Tuesday, August 30, 2011

What to Think About Black-on-White Violence

I certainly understand why the media and politicians shy away from confronting the outbreak of black-on-white violence that seems to be occurring. We do not want to lose the gains made in racial harmony and civil rights since the 1960's, nor do we want to place labels on any ethnic or racial group. But just as we have to face the fact that virtually all terrorists are Muslims to deal with the problem, so must we deal with inter-racial violence before lots of white people decide they must carry firearms to protect themselves.

Why does this seem to be happening now? Is it because black people are suffering disproportionately from the failures of Obamanomics? Have we reached a tipping point with respect to the violent behavior of fatherless children? Is it another symptom of the general breakdown of American society we see on all sides from television programs designed for ignorant slobs to incivility and invectives in our politics? Can it possibly be a black reaction to the criticisms being heaped on a failed black president? I don't know the answers, but we need answers and effective action fast.

The Racial Violence that Dare Not Speak Its Name

By John T. Bennett August 30, 2011 American Thinker

Recent flash mob violence has alerted Americans to a troubling wave of sadistic racial mayhem. A notable outbreak occurred in Denver in 2009, setting a pattern of delay, denial, and silence. Now that same scourge has returned to Denver, among many other places.

In 2009, a four month wave of mayhem broke out in Denver. There were at least 26 violent robberies committed by two black gangs. The victims were -- without exception -- whites and Hispanics. When the dust settled from that initial spate of violence, victims were left with injuries ranging from a skull fracture to broken noses and shattered eye sockets. The local Denver ABC news affiliate summarized the crime spree:
Black gangs roaming downtown Denver often vented their hatred for white victims before assaulting and robbing them during a four-month crime wave, according to interviews and court records obtained by 7NEWS.

That is not the language of a conservative commentator; it's simply a mainstream local news report from an American city that has witnessed widespread racial violence.

The first-hand accounts and surveillance videos of the 2009 attacks are shocking. These weren't sucker punches or fair fights -- the attackers swing madly and rapidly with a viciousness that can only come from blind cruelty. The victims, who can be seen in interviews, were kind-looking, ordinary people. The victims were mostly either gay or straight couples. They didn't provoke the attacks in any conceivable way. The attackers sometimes fractured skulls, or broke eye sockets, and left one victim in a coma. There were a total of 26 attacks from July 17 to Nov. 17.

An incredible 38 people were arrested in connection with this campaign of racist violence. Thirty were ultimately charged, all black. Has this number of arrests been made against any violent white supremacist or right wing organization in the last 50 years?

The story first came to light in 2009 when a source inside the Denver police department said that the department was "keeping the public in the dark" about the attacks. Court documents show that the police did indeed have knowledge of a pattern of racial attacks, but remained silent for 27 days. One victim complained that, had the police informed the public sooner, he could have protected himself.

The same group responsible for that violence is suspected in the murder of Andrew Graham, a young graduate student who was senselessly shot in 2010.

Late last month, Denver saw a possible return to violence, as couples leaving restaurants were being attacked by a group of black men with baseball bats. The Denver Police have renewed warnings of those attacks.

The brutality in Denver is disturbingly similar to violence occurring elsewhere, nationwide. In the last few months alone, a young white lady named Shaina Perry was taunted and beaten in Milwaukee. A young white man named Carter Strange had his skull fractured by a mob in South Carolina. Dawid Strucinski was beaten into a coma by a mob in Bayonne. Anna Taylor, Emily Guendelsberger, and Thomas Fitzgerald were beaten and kicked to the ground in separate Philadelphia flash mobs. Every weekend in July, mobs have attacked in Greensboro, NC. In a mostly-white suburb of Cleveland, witnesses reported large groups of "teens" walking through the streets, "shouting profanities and racial epithets," and one man was viciously beaten while leaving a restaurant with his wife and friends. In all of those cases, the victims were white and the attackers were black.

Then there are the ominous stories that no one has ever heard about. For instance, a mob of 150 "young people" descended on a small, predominantly white NJ town named Winfield Township during a firefighter's carnival. Perhaps the townspeople are merely lucky that there wasn't violence. Isn't the racial mob mentality scary enough that we shouldn't have to wait for violence before we take it seriously?

It cannot be emphasized enough that these attacks often occur in suburban areas where the black groups have to leave their own neighborhoods and purposefully travel to areas that are predominantly non-black, to attack non-black victims. For instance, in one of the many flash mob attacks in Chicago, Trovulus Pickett, 17, is part of a group that attacked and robbed several victims, including a 68-year-old doctor. The attacks occurred in the North side, which is 15 miles away from Pickett's home. This indicates a serious level of planning and potential racial targeting. If these were just run-of-the mill robberies, it wouldn't be too surprising. But the social problem we're looking at is large groups, sometimes numbering in the hundreds, sometimes armed, engaging in racially-focused violent crimes.

There is quite simply no way for a politically correct society to grasp these events, much less effectively deal with them. Liberals have reached the depths of self-deception and self-censorship in response. The Washington Post, New York Times, and the Chicago Tribune, have all openly stated that they will refuse to report on the racial facts of these violent crimes. The Los Angeles Times explains that they don't want to "unfairly stigmatize racial groups." They prefer the soft bigotry of low expectations instead.

These flash mobs have turned the comfortable narrative of racism on its head.

Politicians, the media, academics, and the legal community do not have the capacity to face the issue. The reigning dogma of white racism is too deeply entrenched.

There is a small grievance industry built around condemning white racism and intolerance, real or imagined. Indeed, the welfare state itself is in large part based on the assumption that whites need to give more to achieve racial equality, as reflected in President Obama's lament that the civil rights movement didn't focus on economic redistribution. Legal treatises complain that the racist white power structure grows into the bitter fruit of anti-minority racist violence. For instance, the work of Mari Matsuda and Richard Delgado is featured in countless undergraduate courses, and is ubiquitous in graduate and law school courses. They argue that hate speech is a severe social problem and that such speech, along with other tools of racism, keeps minorities in an inferior position (1). While academics dwell on hateful speech, the actual violence continues. We all pay the price, as racial guilt is used to extort tax money for the welfare state, which fosters the mobs. The PC status quo will not acknowledge the fact that the worst form of racism today is black mob violence.


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Friday, August 26, 2011

Atom Smasher Disproves Global Warming

I keep saying I'm not going to publish another piece on global warming. I've been convinced for many years that it is mostly a natural condition that has gone through cycles throughout our history, and most of my readers are bored by the subject by now. However, this latest study, rather than just disproving the theories of the global warming alarmists, actually proves a positive - that global temperature changes are entirely of natural causes.

CERN: 'Climate models will need to be substantially revised'

New atomsmasher research into cloud formation

By Andrew Orlowski 25th August 2011 Science

CERN's 8,000 scientists may not be able to find the hypothetical Higgs boson, but they have made an important contribution to climate physics, prompting climate models to be revised.

The first results from the lab's CLOUD ("Cosmics Leaving OUtdoor Droplets") experiment published in Nature today confirm that cosmic rays spur the formation of clouds through ion-induced nucleation. Current thinking posits that half of the Earth's clouds are formed through nucleation. The paper is entitled Role of sulphuric acid, ammonia and galactic cosmic rays in atmospheric aerosol nucleation.

This has significant implications for climate science because water vapour and clouds play a large role in determining global temperatures. Tiny changes in overall cloud cover can result in relatively large temperature changes

Left Click To Enlarge

Unsurprisingly, it's a politically sensitive topic, as it provides support for a "heliocentric" rather than "anthropogenic" approach to climate change: the sun plays a large role in modulating the quantity of cosmic rays reaching the upper atmosphere of the Earth.

CERN's director-general Rolf-Dieter Heuer warned his scientists "to present the results clearly but not interpret them". Readers can judge whether CLOUD's lead physicist Jasper Kirkby has followed his boss's warning.

"Ion-induced nucleation will manifest itself as a steady production of new particles that is difficult to isolate in atmospheric observations because of other sources of variability but is nevertheless taking place and could be quite large when averaged globally over the troposphere."

Kirkby is quoted in the accompanying CERN press release:
"We've found that cosmic rays significantly enhance the formation of aerosol particles in the mid troposphere and above. These aerosols can eventually grow into the seeds for clouds. However, we've found that the vapours previously thought to account for all aerosol formation in the lower atmosphere can only account for a small fraction of the observations – even with the enhancement of cosmic rays."

The team used the Proton Synchotron accelerator to examine the nucleation using combinations of trace gases at various temperatures, with precision. These first results confirm that cosmic rays increase the formation of cloud-nuclei by a factor of 10 in the troposphere, but additional trace gasses are needed nearer the surface.

Climate models will have to be revised, confirms CERN in supporting literature.

"[I]t is clear that the treatment of aerosol formation in climate models will need to be substantially revised, since all models assume that nucleation is caused by these vapours [sulphuric acid and ammonia] and water alone.

The work involves over 60 scientists in 17 countries.

Veteran science editor Nigel Calder, who brought the theory to wide public attention with the book The Chilling Stars , co-authored with the father of the theory Henrik Svensmark, has an explanation and background on his blog, here [4], and offers possible reasons on why the research, mooted in the late 1990s, has taken so long.
Svensmark, who is no longer involved with the CERN experiment, says he believes [5] the solar-cosmic ray factor is just one of four factors in climate. The other three are: volcanoes, a "regime shift" that took place in 1977, and residual anthropogenic components.

When Dr Kirkby first described the theory in 1998, he suggested [6] cosmic rays "will probably be able to account for somewhere between a half and the whole of the increase in the Earth's temperature that we have seen in the last century."


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Sunday, August 21, 2011

Republican Delusions

The following article lays out what I have been trying to say for weeks: that Republicans and America are in real trouble because we will probably get another term of an Obama presidency if we do not wise up. Of the candidates now in the race, it is delusional to think that anyone but Mitt Romney can beat Obama - and although I love Sarah Palin, she can't beat him either.

This is a long article, but well worth reading:

Republican Delusion is Obama's All-Too-Secret Weapon

By John Ziegler August 21, 2011 American Thinker
When exactly did Republicans seemingly become so delusional?

The first sign that the GOP base had left the gravitational pull of the rational earth in the Obama era was when professional blowhard Donald Trump shot to the top of the presidential polls on the strength of his bogus birth certificate crusade.

Fortunately, that particular problem took care of itself (at least for now), but the overall situation may have actually gotten worse. The most troubling part is that the vast majority of the party's rank and file seems to have no idea the peril its prospects of unseating President Obama are really in.

There is no doubt that Obama is very vulnerable, far more so than most observers (including me) believed likely when he was swept into office by a tidal wave of biased media coverage less than three years ago. His approval ratings are in the low forties, and in many of the battleground states he appears to be a heavy underdog.

The census-induced changes in the Electoral College slice his margin of error to almost nothing, and the economy shows very little sign of improving enough to rescue him. He has also left a trail of damningly false televised statements which should make for great attack ad fodder.

And yet the Republican Party appears on the verge of making Obama's reelection about as likely as the circumstances surrounding his presidency would make possible.

Consequently, this golden opportunity to help the country largely dodge the Obama bullet is on the verge of being squandered.

While the vast majority of conservatives (including many prominent commentators) would find that notion laughable, the evidence overwhelmingly indicates that, thanks largely to their predilection for seeing reality through overly optimistic and star-spangled glasses, they are dangerously out of touch.

The first misunderstanding that has led to this dangerous case of Republican hubris is the nature of the polling data. When the average conservative thirsting to see Obama be a one-termer hears that his "approval rating" is in the low forties (or even lower) they seem to think this means that almost sixty percent of the voting public has decided that they are unlikely to vote for him next year, but this is far from the truth.

Plenty of people have no problem saying now that they "disapprove" of a president in 2011 and still decide not to vote him out of office in 2012. In fact, saying they "disapprove" of the president's job performance doesn't even mean that they want him replaced at the instant they are asked.

The best way to think of this may be to consider the president as the national spouse. Plenty of wives may say at any given moment (especially when the honeymoon is long over and things seem to be going poorly) that they "disapprove" of the job that their husband is doing, but that doesn't mean they are necessarily going to leave him for someone else, particularly when there is no other specific option available at the time.

Another red herring in the political data is the "Obama vs. Generic Republican" number, which could not be more deceiving. Currently, Obama regularly loses nationally to this fictitious candidate, but if anything, these numbers show just how unlikely it really is that he will actually be defeated. When a poll respondent processes that question they conjure up the image of Republican who has no major blemishes and has yet to have their entire careers picked apart by a media all too eager to destroy them.

The only thing this number really means is how high the eventual Republican candidate's vote total could be. Unfortunately, this data currently actually provides good news for Obama because while he has lost at least once to the mythical untarnished Republican, this nonexistent challenger still has yet to get over 50 percent of the vote. Currently, despite all of his recent problems, no named candidate comes close to beating Obama in an actual head to head matchup except Mitt Romney.

Of course, none of the leading or even potential Republican candidates comes close to fitting the 'generic" description either. Ironically, the one candidate who came by far the closest, Tim Pawlenty, ended up, through little fault of his own, being the very first to be knocked out of the race.

The early demise of the Pawlenty campaign tells you everything you need to know about how this delusion/ignorance regarding political realities is stunting the Republican nominating process in a way Obama should only be able to dream about.

Pawlenty was the one candidate who clearly would have made the election an unambiguous referendum on Obama. That is a battle which, even with the media on his side, the president cannot win unless the economy makes an unexpected recovery.

Pawlenty's campaign was doomed by some of the very qualities which made it so attractive to those who understand how a national presidential election works in the modern age. He was seen as "boring" by a Republican electorate that is clearly looking to be highly stimulated. But in his case 'boring" also meant "electable."

He would have provided very little ammunition for the forces traditionally set to obliterate the Republican candidate. His record was strong and inoffensive, he didn't say things that the press could make sound outrageous, and he wasn't too rich, dumb, old, corrupt, crazy or racist (the usual laundry list of attack points on Republican candidates). In short, he was nearly the perfect candidate to run against Obama, and yet he barely got out of the starting gate, mostly because, as he said, the "audience" (which polls indicate believes electability is the most important quality in a nominee) was looking for something different.

Unfortunately for Pawlenty, he was either unwilling or unable to even make this argument. A couple of months ago at an event in Los Angeles attended by hundreds of conservatives in the entertainment industry (yes, they do exist), I asked Pawlenty during the Q and A how he planned to communicate the reality that he obviously had the best, and perhaps only, chance to beat Obama.

In a moment that directly foreshadowed his "Obamnycare" debate debacle, the former governor balked at the opportunity I presented him in a way that is emblematic of this issue of Republican overconfidence. Pawlenty's answer not only didn't augment the argument for his campaign, it actually destroyed it. He didn't accept the premise that he was the only candidate who could beat Obama and attacked the notion that the president was going to be particularly difficult to take down, saying that it would be a mistake to overestimate his electoral strength.

Well, even forgetting the obvious dangers of underestimating Obama, why wouldn't the base go for a "sexier" option if nearly anyone could slay this Democratic dragon? He was basically saying, "If you don't like me, go ahead and take a flyer on a riskier candidate."

That is exactly what the Republican base is in the process of doing.
As of now, there is only one current candidate who, barring a total economic collapse, has even the slightest chance of beating Obama and he (Romney) is distrusted by at least half of the Republican electorate. This is not simply a matter of opinion. The facts overwhelmingly point towards this conclusion as being patently obvious.

Even most Republicans would admit that Ron Paul (foreign policy dove/nut), Rick Santorum (just google his name and homosexuality) and Herman Cain (the Muslim issue and lack of experience) can't possibly win a general election, especially against a media darling like Obama. It also seems to be accepted wisdom that Newt Gingrich (his global warming commercial with Nancy Pelosi and his Paul Ryan comments) and Jon Huntsman (worked for and praised Obama) can't possibly win the nomination.

This of course leaves Romney along with, for now, Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry.

Regardless of what Tea Party activists will tell you, neither Bachmann nor Perry has any chance to defeat Obama unless there is an economic catastrophe or massive scandal between now and the election. This would be the case if both of these candidates didn't hold policy positions (which they do) that the media will easily be able to use to make them seem far outside the mainstream.

This argument can be made almost entirely without even looking at their politics (a factor, by the way, which is becoming increasingly overrated as the electorate becomes more ignorant and frivolous). One need only see how the basic narratives of the general election would take hold with each candidate as the nominee to see that Obama would win, probably easily.

In the case of Bachmann, she would be trying to become the first female president (ask Hillary Clinton about how tough that is just on its own) with the added burden of being seen by the media as a near clone of Sarah Palin, who herself has already been, largely wrongly, destroyed in the eyes of sixty percent of the public. Heck, Saturday Night Live already uses a Bachmann character that is just as devastating as their Palin impression was.

On top of that, she would be trying to become the first congressperson to be elected president in the modern history of the country -- during a time period when Congress is probably the most unpopular it has ever been. If that weren't enough, Bachmann leads the portion of that Congress (the Tea Party caucus) which is by far the scariest and easily demonized to non conservative portions of the country.

Heck, even if everything broke her way (which the media would never allow), the statement about her from her own former governor, Tim Pawlenty, at the last debate, where he mocked her lack of accomplishments in Congress would be played on a televised loop until Obama got over the top.

Quite simply, even if she were qualified and politically sound (two very questionable presumptions) Bachmann could never beat Obama without some sort of massive disaster hitting the country or his campaign.

The Perry problem is only slightly less definitive. At least he has been the governor of a major state for the past ten years and has a plausibly sellable record. Unfortunately, thanks to that state being Texas, the negative narrative about his candidacy almost literally writes itself. It took all of one day on the campaign trail for comedians to practically quote Perry when joking that the big difference between him and the roundly vilified George W. Bush is that the famously "stupid" former president is better educated.

Thanks to the obvious comparisons to Bush (they were even both on school cheerleading squads!) Perry will be far easier to negatively caricature than even Bachmann. His free-wheeling campaign/speaking style will provide fertile ground from which the media will inevitably reap a bounty of easily manipulated sound bites.

His rant on the Federal Reserve chairman was a classic example. The fact that he was correct on the issue and said " almost treasonous" was completely (and purposely) lost in the coverage of that event.

Should Perry get the nomination, this phenomenon would only get more pronounced.

While Perry would likely fight back (perhaps the one characteristic that truly separates him from Bush) and hold his own, his record of accomplishments would not be enough to sustain him against the inevitable onslaught. For one thing, Texas is in the middle of its worst drought in a generation and by election time Perry's economic stats will not look nearly as impressive as they do today, especially when put in the biased light shined on them by the pro-Obama media.

So now we are left with only Romney or a late entry into the race. There appear to still be two legitimate possible future candidates: Paul Ryan and Sarah Palin.

Since he is a congressman and a Tea Party favorite, Ryan has many of the same disadvantages in his narrative that Bachmann does, but without the attention grabber of being a woman. While he is clearly brilliant, he has the great misfortune of having already put down his plan to save the country in detailed writing. This would provide the Obama campaign team far too many attack points where the rebuttal would take more than the six seconds the tiny attention span of the media and the public would allow him to explain why electing him wouldn't really mean the end of Medicare and Social Security.

If we lived in a country where facts and details mattered and where courage and intellect were rewarded, Ryan would at least have a shot. Sadly, we don't and he doesn't.

As a legitimate Sarah Palin expert, I have written extensively (at great personal cost) about how her premature resignation as governor of Alaska completely disqualifies her as the person who should take on Obama. Even if she hadn't already been unfairly destroyed during the 2008 election, quitting her only major job, in a way that appears to have been designed for her to stay famous and get rich, would make it impossible for her to take on an incumbent president. Not surprisingly, in nearly every head-to-head poll Palin does worse against Obama than every other Republican candidate. Her fans have seemingly forgotten about the resignation, but were she ever to get the nomination the nation would be reminded of it on a daily basis.

That leaves only Mitt Romney as the last hope.

This is not to say that Romney doesn't have "issues" even in a general election, because he does as well. Being a Mormon won't help, though the media will really have to do gymnastics to justify this as an issue after the way they protected Obama on the Rev. Wright scandal in 2008. His business record as a job cutter would certainly be exploited and his personal wealth would play right into the class warfare campaign the Obama forces intend to run (which is why Pawlenty should have been the nominee). Finally, his penchant for changing positions would potentially allow him to be cast as the Republican equivalent of John Kerry.

While these circumstances are hardly ideal, against a weakened Obama they can be overcome. None of them rises to the level of a "disqualifier" and together they are still less dangerous than the negatives in any of the other candidates. Plus, Romney would have the ability to win key states like Michigan and New Hampshire which would be clearly out of reach for Bachmann or Perry. Then, of course, there is the fact that he looks and sounds more like a president than perhaps anyone else who has ever run for the office. Unfortunately, that seems to matter more than just about anything else these days.

While the evidence (both from polling and observational data) strongly indicates Romney has the best chance to beat the Obama candidacy the Republicans are most likely to face in 2012, his biggest problem appears to be that while the base claims electability is the most important quality it is looking for, it doesn't yet understand that he may be the only person with a real shot.

It is also possible that, much like a young woman on the dating scene, what the Republican base says it wants and what it really desires are two very different things. They have already discarded the "nice" guy who would have been best for them in the long run (Pawlenty) and are now enamored with the latest "bad boy" (Perry) who is exciting but who has very little "marriage" potential.

In short, Romney is in great danger of being left at the alter by a base which wrongly thinks that Obama's weakness has left them free to follow their hearts instead of their brains.

So, how it is all going to work out? Obviously, no one knows for sure, but here is my best analysis.

I continue to believe that Sarah Palin has no choice but to get in the race. While I am no longer in contact with her or her team after I came out against her running, everything I observed from the "inside" indicated to me that she was very open to running and nothing since then has changed my mind about that.

Her brand depends on her running because if she doesn't, her followers will feel let down and she will have no apparent next act. Once there are two new nominees on the 2012 ticket, she is old news with no office to change her narrative. By 2016 she would be ancient history with either a Republican president in office or with a brand new crop of highly qualified challengers ready to pounce on what should be the slam dunk of replacing a term-limited Obama.

My prediction is that she gets in and runs almost exclusively an air war intended to create the appearance of a real primary campaign without any of the hassles. She knows that her vote is pretty much set in stone and it won't be impacted much, if at all, by creating a traditional organization. If she is as smart as I think she is, her goal would be to exceed low expectations and finish a respectable second to Romney and thus use the campaign to change minds about her for the future. In a sense, she would then become a hybrid of Romney and Mike Huckabee after 2008: technically "unemployed" but well known and respected enough to sustain her viability into the future.

Weirdly, one of the reasons I am convinced Palin will get in is that there is actually a chance she could come "close" to winning the nomination. The spotlight of scrutiny is already directly on Bachmann and Perry and it is possible that one or both could either evaporate or at least wear thin in an era when two months is an eternity.

If things break her way, she could end up as the last Tea Party Star standing up against Romney (not counting Ron Paul) and it would be possible that Romney would not be popular enough with the base to reach the vote threshold needed to put her away. Still, she could not beat Romney in a protracted battle because, as Obama proved in 2008, winning a delegate battle is still all about organization, an area when Romney would dominate Palin, who frankly may not even want to actually win the nomination.

In that sense, Palin entering the race would probably be the best development the Romney campaign could hope for. She would immediately split votes from Bachmann and Perry and simultaneously raise the issue of electability to the front burner. Ironically, the fact that she probably helps Romney would be the only genuine excuse Palin could use at this point not to run.

An entry by Ryan seems less easy to predict both in likelihood and potential impact. Like Palin, he would probably hurt Bachmann most, but he could also take votes from Romney. Having him in the debates would definitely change their tenor and tone in a way that would heighten their substantive nature, but also may have negative consequences for the eventual nominee in a general election. For instance, I doubt that Romney would look forward to having to either embrace Ryan's plan on camera and hurt himself in a the general, or reject it and further turn off the base. Ryan is definitely a wild card, but my gut tells me he will not get in, especially if it becomes clear that Palin will.

As far as the potential implosions of Bachmann and Perry, this will not happen as easily as it may have in past cycles. This is where Obama's current weakness may end up as his greatest strength.

If Obama was perceived as nearly unbeatable, the Republican base would be far more sensitive towards the obvious signs that Bachmann and Perry can't play to a national audience. But now the base is so suspicious of "moderation" (especially after John McCain) that any attacks from the media/left are seen as a badge of honor by those who will be voting in the early primary states. As shown by Bachmann's victory in Ames the week of her "crazy eyes" Newsweek cover photo, the more a candidate is seen as the target of the left, the more they are instinctively trusted by the hard right, even when there is little or no logic to such support. It is also important to point out that the conservative media has shown itself extremely hesitant to strongly criticize any Republican candidate with a following (Palin being a prime example) for fear of losing their fans as customers.

If Obama were really smart (I know what you are thinking), he would spend every day ripping/mocking Bachmann and Perry and praising Romney. Doing so would single handedly make it almost impossible for Romney to win the nomination.

This is not to say that Bachmann and Perry can't fade away by the time South Carolina comes around. Bachmann will be vulnerable to a run by Palin and Perry will now have to deal with the absurdly high expectations of a frontrunner which would make anything less than a second place finish in Iowa a campaign killer. Assuming Palin gets in the race, only one of the Bachmann/Perry duo (likely the one who wins Iowa) makes it to South Carolina as a still viable candidate.

Palin, on the other hand, thanks to her celebrity, low overhead, the overwhelming desire of the news media to keep covering her, and lack of anything to lose, will be able to keep going as long as her bus doesn't break down.

This means South Carolina will likely come down to Romney, Palin, Paul and either Bachmann or Perry (probably Perry). In that scenario, if Romney finishes second (third at the very worst, which he barely did in 2008) he should be fine. Thanks to Michigan and Florida on the horizon, he should be able to outlast whoever wins South Carolina unless it is decidedly Perry. If Romney fails to meet this mark, it could create the nightmare scenario of a Perry, Palin and Paul death march to the finish, a race which would eventually be "won" by Perry.

One of the keys to the race is whether Palin catches fire in Iowa, which seems unlikely at this point. She is beloved by much of the base, but they also have grave suspicions about her electability. If she finishes third or worse in Iowa (which will happen without at least either Bachmann or Perry collapsing) the same will happen in New Hampshire and her greatest weakness will be set in stone, making it much easier for Romney to beat her in South Carolina. Again, her lack of organization and the fact that the establishment greatly fears her nomination, make it impossible for her to win a long slog, but how well she does will play a huge role in shaping the dynamic of the race.

In the end, Romney is still the favorite, but almost nothing can go wrong for him. Should he somehow lose the perception of being the most electable option, he would almost immediately be toast. He is like golfer Nick Faldo in the final round of the 1987 British Open: eighteen pars and he is the winner, but any major blunders and he will need a huge break to pull it out.

When it comes to the general election, there are two other important factors in Obama's favor that are being totally overlooked at this time. The first is that Obama will not just be running against an unpopular Congress, but rather against the even more powerful force of undivided government.

Americans have usually mistrusted too much power being in the hands of one party, but in today's toxic environment this trend is on steroids. Even in 2008, Obama benefited greatly from a massive misperception among his voters that Republicans still controlled Congress. In fact, according to two national polls I commissioned after the election, had voters been required to know that it was the Democratic Party which ruled Congress, Obama would have actually lost. Huge portions of the country had little or no idea that they would be handing one party total control of the political process.

In 2012, Obama will undoubtedly make sure that every voter knows that if he is replaced there is an excellent chance that Republicans will be in total command and that there will be nothing from keeping the Tea Party from sending the country into fiscal chaos. The debt ceiling debate will be made to work in his favor because he will be able to make it seem as if his defeat would cause the United States to default on its debt, with economic calamity certain to follow.

The "Obama as goalkeeper against the Tea Party" argument has the potential to be very powerful, especially with the media more than willing to help sell it and the president still personally popular. And yet I have yet to hear anyone even mention it.

The other unmentioned pro-Obama factor is even less likely to get any public conversation.

Thanks to the massive fragmentation of the media, the landscape of news outlets has been dramatically altered over the past decade. One of the many consequences of this reality has been that "news" organizations have been forced to make decisions base almost solely on business considerations and to become ideologically driven in order to attract and please a core audience.

The dirty little secret of this development is that it is actually economically beneficial for conservative outlets to have a Democratic president and for liberal ones to have a Republican commander in chief. In fact, about the only part of the economy that President Obama has dramatically improved is that of conservative commentary, especially that of Fox News whose ratings have never been better.

There is absolutely no doubt that conservative news/commentary outlets will have a profound self interest for Obama to remain in office. While many of them will not act on that self-interest, at least some of them undoubtedly will. I know this because a few of the most influential "conservative" sources took a dive for Obama in 2008 and have so far gotten away with it without their customers even having a clue.

Even if this problem somehow doesn't transpire, there is no doubt that the vast majority of media will be favoring Obama in 2012 almost as much as they did in 2008. If the conservative base hasn't yet learned the obvious lessons of that unprecedented display of "Media Malpractice," then perhaps they deserve to have history repeat itself.

It is not too late yet, but it is getting close.

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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

We Republicans are In Real Trouble

I know that some of the more rabid supporters of Bachmann, Perry and Paul will call me a traitor or worse, but, if you listen to what these candidates actually say with just a little bit of wisdom and maturity, you realize that Michelle Bachmann, Rick Perry and Ron Paul are almost certifiable.

Mrs. Bachmann, there is no way we can move forward without raising the debt ceiling. We cannot possibly work our way out of this mess in a month. It’s going to take years and a fundamental change in the attitudes and expectations of voters.

Mr. Perry, we really don’t want to end Social Security or Medicare, and Ben Bernanke may be mistaken, but he’s not a traitor.

Mr. Paul, we really don’t want Iran to get nuclear weapons, and they are the threat in the Middle East, not America.

I have great reservations about what Mitt Romney would actually do as president, but he’s looking better and better to me all the time. I keep hoping Governor Christie will get in.


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Monday, August 15, 2011

We Need to Call Them Bastards Again

We have learned that they may be black, or they may be white, but one thing that links the rioters in London, Philadelphia and Wisconsin is that they are fatherless children of welfare, and they hate us. In England, more than 50% of births are to unwed mothers; in the USA it has risen to over 40%.

Senator Moynihan, who coined the phrase, “defining deviancy down”, warned us that this was coming. Children, particularly boy children, need fathers who work, both to discipline them and to set an example for them. In Moynihan’s time the statistics were just starting to move; today it’s clear: before President Johnson’s Great Society and its expansion of government benefits, the percent of children of unwed mothers for both blacks and whites was only 5%. Today it’s 33% for whites and 72% for blacks, even higher for Hispanics, and society is unraveling.
Left Click to Enlarge

We need to make more changes in welfare, specifically AFDC. I wouldn’t change things for those now getting benefits, but, unless there is some form of real disability involved, we need to make welfare a temporary program to handle emergency situations. The unintended consequences of today’s welfare programs are destroying the people who get the benefits, and, shortly, they will be out there destroying the rest of us. Obama's broken promises of hope and change have also accelerated the destructive process. See The Sleeping Giant Awakens.

Cameron: Riot-hit UK must reverse `moral collapse'


Riot-hit UK must reverse `moral collapse'

LONDON (AP) -- Britain must confront its "slow-motion moral collapse" Prime Minister David Cameron declared Monday, following four days of riots that left five people dead, thousands facing criminal charges and at least 200 million pounds ($326 million) in property losses.

Cameron said his coalition government would outline new policies designed to tackle a culture of laziness, irresponsibility and selfishness which he believes fueled Britain's unrest.

He also pledged to toughen rhetoric from ministers and officials, who he claimed had too often had shied away from promoting strong moral standards.

His government would no longer be timid in discussing family breakdown or poor parenting, or in criticizing those who fail to set a good example to their community.

"This has been a wake-up call for our country. Social problems that have been festering for decades have exploded in our face," Cameron told an audience at a youth center in Witney, his Parliamentary district in southern England." AP


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Friday, August 12, 2011

Oh,Oh, Did Rick Perry Really Say This?

In my previous post I mentioned that I hoped that Rick Perry was for real because I was discouraged by the performances of the GOP debaters in Iowa. Since I knew little about Perry, I decided to do some research. The first thing I learned was that all the left-wing blogs were going crazy with delight because an interview that Perry gave Newsweek last fall had come to light - an interview in which he made some careless, and not-smart comments about Social Security and Medicare.

Whatever you think about the original justification for these programs, they are ingrained in American life, and any person who is running for president cannot let himself be portrayed as someone who would end or seriously slash Social Security and/or Medicare, and this is just what Rick Perry has done to himself. Republicans should focus on the message that they wish to SAVE Social Security and Medicare for their children, and no changes they make would affect those on or about to enter these programs.

Social Security is not a Ponzi scheme. It needs adjustments because of the increased longevity and better health of older Americans. The liberalizing of disability benefits and the expansion of the definition of disabilities that occurred several years ago must also be revisited.

I think we Republicans are in real trouble. We'll vote for anyone to beat Obama, but we need independents and some Democrats too. Rick Perry won't get them.

Rick Perry on the Record

From scrapping Social Security and Medicare to immigration to Constitutional amendments, Texas Governor Rick Perry spoke openly last fall with Andrew Romano.

Questions in bold type.

by Andrew Romano August 12, 2011 Daily Beast

In "Fed Up!", you criticize the progressive era and the changes it produced: the 16th and 17th Amendments, Social Security, Medicare, and so on. I understand being against these things in principle—of longing for a world in which they never existed. But now that they’re part of the fabric of our society, do you think we should actually do away with them?

I think every program needs to stand the sunshine of righteous scrutiny. Whether it’s Social Security, whether it’s Medicaid, whether it’s Medicare. You’ve got $115 trillion worth of unfunded liability in those three. They’re bankrupt. They’re a Ponzi scheme. I challenge anybody to stand up and defend the Social Security program that we have today—and particularly defend it to a 27-year-old young man who’s just gotten married and is trying to get his life headed in the right direction economically. I happen to think that the Progressive movement was the beginning of the deterioration of our Constitution from the standpoint of it being abused and misused to do things that Congress wanted to do, and/or the Supreme Court wanted to implement. The New Deal was the launching pad for the Washington largesse as we know it today. And I think we should have a legitimate, honest, national discussion about Washington’s continuing to spend money we don’t have on programs that we don’t need.

America’s looming debt crisis is a real problem, but neither Republicans nor Democrats have really been addressing it seriously. What solutions should your party be pushing?

I think the states are the ones who should be making the decision on whether or not they want to be spending their dollars on those types of programs—not having it made in Washington, D.C.

I see how that might make sense for, say, education. But what would it mean for something like Social Security—a big, national safety net? In the book, you call Social Security a “failure” that “we have been forced to accept for more than 70 years now.” Is it time for it to end?

Well, the counties of Matagorda, Bresoria, and Galveston in 1981 decided they wanted to opt out of this Social Security program. They have now very well funded programs and their employees are going to be substantially better taken care of then anybody in Social Security. So I would suggest a legitimate conversation about let the states keep their money and implement the programs. That’s one option that’s out there. But I didn’t write the book and say here are all the solutions. I think the first step in finding the solutions is admitting we have a problem—and admitting that Social Security is a Ponzi scheme.

What about Medicare? That’s an even bigger contributor to these debt problems.

Here’s the problem, in the 25 years that I’ve worked in Texas state government both as a legislator, an appropriator, then as lieutenant governor and the governor of Texas: Washington attaches strings to all these programs. They take away the incentive for innovation because they say here is a portion of your money back and here are the only ways that you can spend it. That on its face is bad public policy.

And again, I think it’s an abuse of our Constitution. There’s no place in the Constitution that says Washington, D.C. is supposed to be mandated health-care coverage, for example. That gets to the very core of the book. If America really wants to be strong again, we need to get back to the principles this country was based upon. The Constitution as it was written, and the 10th Amendment that clearly says the states are where these decisions should be made. Moving back in that direction will create substantially more competition. States should be laboratories of innovation. I promise you, I know you did a profile on Bobby Jindal, who I happen to think is one of the brightest governors in our country. Bobby knows health care very well. If he were given the freedom from the federal government to come up with his own innovative ways working with his legislature to deliver his own health-care innovations to his citizens, I guarantee he could do it more efficiently and more effectively than one-size-fits-all coming out of Washington, D.C.

But again, Medicare. It’s been in place for more than four decades now. What do you suggest we do to set it on a more fiscally sustainable path going forward?

I think we need to have a national discussion and not be afraid to talk about it.

That is my goal. I didn’t write the book and say anywhere in it, I got all the solutions. What I did say is, We have to be courageous as a country and stand up and admit that we have a Social Security program that is bankrupt, that is a Ponzi scheme, that Medicare and Medicaid collective had $106 trillion worth of liability that is unfunded, and that we need to deal with it and quit passing it on to the next Congress and the next generation.

You’re a supporter of the Tea Party movement. What was your reaction when activists were out there saying “keep your government hands off my Medicare”? Isn’t that a contradiction? Medicare is a government program, but a lot of people are reluctant to have it affected in any way—even as they’re calling for spending cuts. Doesn’t that make the job of balancing the budget and shrinking Washington more difficult?

[Laughs] I think you can find any sign on any issue at any rally. I’m not going to respond to one person’s sign.

I think the first step in finding the solutions is admitting we have a problem—and admitting that Social Security is a Ponzi scheme.

That’s fair. But the larger problem is that we have Republicans in Washington railing against Medicare cuts in the Democratic health plan—even though they’re exactly the kind of cuts they’ve been advocating for decades. Can we take these talking points about reduced spending seriously when the people who are making them are refusing to actually cut the necessary programs?

I would suggest that any Republican who is not going to work toward finding a solution to the budgetary problems that we have in this country ought to just go home and just let somebody come who really is interested in not spending more dollars that we don’t have on programs that we don’t want. The issue is about spending. One of my solutions that I would move forward on is put a freeze on spending for a year. Quit doing the earmarks. These are simplistic but the fact of the matter is they’ll go a long way toward giving the private sector the confidence that Washington is not going to continue spending dollars in the long or short term, devaluing the dollars they have today. You want to see job creation, get some stability in Washington, D.C. And frankly if you want to see a great growth spurt in America, have Washington basically block grant those dollars back to the states and have the states come up with their own innovative ways to deliver health care, pension programs, whatever it make be: transportation, infrastructure, education. Our goal is to quit sending so much money to Washington, D.C.

Let’s talk about some Constitutional issues, which take up a large part of your book. In the book, you argue against the 17th Amendment, which allowed the people to elect their senators directly instead of letting their state legislatures do it for them. This has become a big Tea Party talking point, but I’m not sure I understand the logic behind it. You say that by allowing people to elect their own senators, “the states have handed over a significant chunk of their sovereignty to the federal government.” But wouldn’t we be less free, and the country less democratic, if we didn’t have a say in who was representing us in Washington?

Stand by just a second. [30 seconds of silence.] OK, I’m back with you. I apologize. I’m sorry, I got distracted when you were talking. I think the issue is about consolidating the power in Washington, D.C. The 17th Amendment is one of those where they were making... the states were historically more in control when they decided who those senators were going to be. They took the states out of the process at that particular point in time. So that’s the... uh... the historic concept of checks and balances, when you had the concept of the federal government and the states. The 17th Amendment is when the states started getting out of balance with the federal government, is my belief.

Some Tea Partiers call for the 17th Amendment to be reversed or repealed. Is that something you would support?

Here’s what I think. We need to get the spending under control before we start... This is kind of like, deliver my mail on time, preferably on Saturdays, defend the border before you come down here and start telling us how to do all these other things. The base responsibilities... If the federal government would just take care of the base responsibilities the Constitution calls for then we might have a bit more progressive conversation about the federal government getting involved in a whole lot of other things. But for me, that’s what people are really upset about. We’ve got a border with Mexico that’s not secure today. We had another Texas citizen killed yesterday in Juarez. Americans are looking at that and going, Why are you trying to tell us how to educate our children, how to deliver health care, how to do this myriad of things, you know, what kind of cars we can drive, what kind of lightbulbs we can have in our house, when you’re not even taking care of your basic responsibilities. And so I kind of put the repeal of the 17th Amendment in the, you know... It’s important to have that conversation, but relative to the spending, it’s secondary.

The Constitution says that “the Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes… to provide for the… general Welfare of the United States.” But I noticed that when you quoted this section on page 116, you left “general welfare” out and put an ellipsis in its place. Progressives would say that “general welfare” includes things like Social Security or Medicare—that it gives the government the flexibility to tackle more than just the basic responsibilities laid out explicitly in our founding document. What does “general welfare” mean to you?

I don’t think our founding fathers when they were putting the term “general welfare” in there were thinking about a federally operated program of pensions nor a federally operated program of health care. What they clearly said was that those were issues that the states need to address. Not the federal government. I stand very clear on that. From my perspective, the states could substantially better operate those programs if that’s what those states decided to do.

So in your view those things fall outside of general welfare. But what falls inside of it? What did the Founders mean by “general welfare”?

I don’t know if I’m going to sit here and parse down to what the Founding Fathers thought general welfare meant.

But you just said what you thought they didn’t mean by general welfare. So isn’t it fair to ask what they did mean? It’s in the Constitution.


OK. Moving on. Many Tea Partiers want to repeal the 14th Amendment, which provides for birthright citizenship. Do you agree with them?

Again, I think it’s one of those that you put out there and have a discussion on the issue. But the 14th Amendment was clearly put in place during a period of time when we had individual coming into the country, and it served its purpose. Is it being abused today? It may be. But from the standpoint of does it rise to the level of having a constitutional prohibition or removal of that, probably not.

You mentioned border security, earlier. You’re the governor of a border state and have been for some time. As you write in the book, Ronald Reagan signed a bill in 1986 trying to reform immigration that didn’t work out — the borders security provisions weren’t enforced—then President George W. Bush tried again and could get it through Congress because “people had been to that rodeo before.” Is there a possible path to pursued in two parts: first, a measure that establishes stricter border security and then, and only then, a later measure that provides a pathway to citizenship for the millions of immigrants who are here illegally? A one-two punch.

We have a pathway to citizenship in this country today: it’s get in the line and do what it takes to get here legally. You cannot have a comprehensive discussion about immigration reform until you secure the border. I’ve got a 1,200 mile border with Mexico and it’s not secure. We have American citizens being killed, we have drugs coming across, we have illegal immigrations and all types of other human trafficking going on. Our border is not secure because our federal government has been an abject failure at it.

I think everyone can agree on that, but...

Here’s what everyone should agree on: get the border secure, then we can have a conversation about what type immigration policy we want to put in place. If there’s a revolving door at the border, your immigration policy is not worth the paper it’s written on.

But just to be clear: if border security is accomplished, you can envision some sort of path to citizenship for people who are here illegally.


You write about how drastically the size of government has expanded over the past few decades. But during much of that time, Republicans were in office. The government grew under Nixon. It grew under Ford. It grew under Reagan. And it grew under Bush. These presidents couldn’t cut spending or shrink Washington. Does that mean they weren’t true conservatives?

I think I could probably go through and find programs from each of those presidents that were not as conservative as I am. Again, what I think we need to be focusing on is our current situation here. Going back and picking and choosing what either the Nixon or the Bush 41 or the Reagan years didn’t do right is not particularly productive.

I understand that. But the arc of history you trace in the book is all about this inexorable growth of government and the harm that it’s done to the country.

As I point out, it happened with Woodrow Wilson and the monstrous growth of the New Deal. If what you’re asking me is if Ronald Reagan is more conservative than Franklin Roosevelt, uh, yeah, I think so.

But the larger question that I’m trying to get it is whether it’s even possible to be your kind of conservative—the kind of conservative you’re advocating for in this book—if you’re working in Washington. Because in theory, Reagan was your kind of conservative, and yet government grew when he was in office. Can conservatives actually reverse the last 75 years of federal policy?

Sure. Absolutely they can. We just have to be principled and disciplined and learn how to say no. The idea that you can’t put the genie back in the bottle is not correct. I don’t subscribe to it. It takes people who will say no to special interests and no to new spending, and say yes to allowing the states to be more in control of their futures.

Earlier this year you told Newsweek that “when the history books are written, I think George W. Bush will go down as … an incredibly good president.”

I still think that.

But in this book you slam Bush’s 2008 stimulus as “a quick (non) fix” and criticize him for signing into law “large education increases and a massive expansion of Medicare to the tune of more than $500 billion.” Later, you criticize his attempt at comprehensive immigration reform and disparage his notion of compassionate conservatism. Are you now saying that in some sense, President Bush was a disappointment domestically?

Yeah, there were programs that President Bush promoted that I don’t think, neither on the front side or not with history, were particularly good. Medicare Part D was one of those. A $7 trillion expansion in that one program.

You also place a lot of blame for the growing deficits on Obama, and his stimulus package in particular. But if you were president after Lehman Brothers collapsed, and you were facing that economic crisis, what would you have done?

I think you allow the market to work its way through it. The idea that we own an automobile company today is staggering in its proportions. I don’t understand why the TARP bill exists. Let the processes find their way. I don’t think it’s the government's job to be protecting a company that’s “too big to fail.” I don’t buy into that premise. We have bankruptcy laws and reorganization laws on our books for a reason. I think history will show those were bad decisions.

But the counterargument is that if GM collapsed, there would have been tons of jobs lost—and now it’s profitable again. Without TARP, the banking system would’ve imploded—and now the money’s been paid back.

I don’t necessarily buy into the premise that somehow or another those measures saved these jobs. There are companies that get restructured on a regular basis and the workers don’t lose their jobs. They get new management, they put a pay-out plan in place and we go on about our business rather than getting these huge amounts of debt piled on future generations.

Another criticism you have of Obama is on health care—and in particular the individual mandate, which you call unconstitutional. But according to the Constitution, Congress has the right to regulate interstate commerce. Shouldn’t that include health insurance? After all, most health insurance is sold through interstate companies. And when a person declines to purchase health insurance, that affects interstate commerce by driving up health insurance premiums for everyone else.

I happen to think that forcing citizens to buy a private sector product is unconstitutional on its face. I can’t find that anywhere in the Constitution. The commerce clause has been highly overused, and that’s just another example of it through the years.

You were just reelected. When you finish out this term, it’ll be 14 years as governor of Texas—an all-time record. Given that there are no term limits in the Lone Star state, are you planning to stay on and run again?

To look past this term, the next four years, is way down the road. To say “here’s what I’m going to be doing in 2014” is a bit of stretch.

But you’ve said that you’ve got the best job in the country...

I do.

... and that you have no interest in running president. Still the case?

Not going to run for president. Not going to be a vice-presidential candidate. Not going to be in anybody’s cabinet. And I suspect I’m not going to be anybody’s ambassador either.


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No Winners Last Night

I really don't know much about Rick Perry, except for his excellent record in Texas, but I sure hope he's the real thing after watching last night's debate. Michelle Bachmann is lovely, but her answers to most questions were absurd. Santorum, Paul, Cain, Huntsman and Gingrich have no real chance, and I can't grasp the difference between Romneycare and Obamacare when Romney explains it. I didn't agree that Pawlenty lost big, but he didn't win either. The most points were scored by Gingrich, who has no chance at all. As far as all the hands up to reject 10 to 1, I put that as a necessity to win Republican primaries, and not a serious position.

No winners in Thursday’s debate, but many losers

By Ezra Klein August 12, 2011 Washington Post

The most telling moment of Thursday’s GOP debate wasn’t when Michele Bachmann cooly stuck a knife between Tim Pawlenty’s ribs, or when Rick Santorum plaintively begged for more airtime, or when Mitt Romney easily slipped past questions about his record on health-care reform. It was when every single GOP candidate on the stage agreed that they would reject a budget deal that was $10 in spending cuts for every $1 in tax increases. Even Fox News’s Bret Baier couldn’t quite believe what he was seeing.

He asked again just to make sure the assembled candidates had understood the question.

Primary debates are usually watched for what they say about the candidates, but they’re generally important for what they say about the party. This one was no different. With the notable exceptions of Ron Paul and Jon Huntsman, the candidates didn’t disagree over policy. They disagreed over fealty to policy.

Bachmann didn’t attack Pawlenty’s policy proposals. She attacked him for past statements suggesting he might believe in other policy proposals, like the individual mandate and cap-and-trade. Palwenty’s assault on Romney took the same form. This debate wasn’t about what policies the candidates believed in. That was largely a given. This debate was about which of the candidates believed in those policies the most.

The best policy in this debate wasn’t the policy most likely to work, or the policy most likely to pass. It was the most orthodox policy. The policy least sullied by compromise. A world in which the GOP will not agree to deficit reduction with a 10:1 split between spending cuts and tax increases is a world where entitlement reform can’t happen. It’s a world where the “supercommittee” fails and the trigger is pulled, and thus a world in which $1 out of every $2 in cuts comes from the Pentagon. It’s not a world that fits what many in the GOP consider ideal policy. But it is a world in which none in the GOP need to traverse the treacherous politics of compromise.

Perhaps no candidate is better suited for that world than Michele Bachmann. But tellingly, the candidate who is best on the politics also proved worst on the policy.
Over and over again, Bachmann misstated basic facts. She said that Tim Pawlenty “implemented” cap-and-trade in Minnesota. He did no such thing. She said “we just heard from Standard Poor’s,” and “when they dropped our credit rating what they said was we don’t have an ability to repay our debt.” Simply not true.
S&P has never questioned our ability to repay our debt. That’s why we remain AA+.

They have questioned whether political brinksmanship will stop us from paying our debt. The downgrade “was pretty much motivated by all of the debate about the raising of the debt ceiling,” said John Chambers, head of S&P’s sovereign ratings committee. That is to say, it was motivated by political brinksmanship from the likes of, well, Michele Bachmann.

It’s fitting that the candidate best able to resist compromise is the candidate who seems least able to correctly explain the policies at issue and the choices we face.

It’s a lot easier to take a hard line if you don’t understand the consequences of your actions, and a lot simpler to belt out applause lines if you’re not slowed down by the messy complexities of the issues. But where Bachmann is leading, the other candidates are following. Mitt Romney knows perfectly well that a deal with $10 in spending cuts for every $1 in tax increases is a great deal for conservatives. What he probably doesn’t know is how he’s going to explain why he pretended otherwise when he was vying for the nomination.

After the debate, the punditry immediately turned to who won and who lost. Pawlenty, most said, was the clear loser. Romney, Bachmann, and maybe the absent Rick Perry were the possible winners. I would look at it more broadly.

The losers in tonight’s debate were anyone who wants to see the sort of compromise necessary for the political process to work, and anyone who has been convinced that they can achieve their goals simply by restating their convictions. As for the winners? Well, I didn’t see too many of those.


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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Sleeping Giant Awakens

Unfortunately, there seem to be common links among the violent riots that took place recently in Philadelphia, at the Wisconsin state fair and in London. The vicious thugs we saw were mostly black, children of welfare and fatherless. Chronic and high rates of unemployment - and the cuts in programs and benefits already made with more to come may also be contributing factors. Ringleaders also all seem to have iPhones and Blackberries.

When I read the following piece this morning, I remembered the lady in Fort Myers who exclaimed in 2008, "Obama's going to pay my mortgage for me".

We are in for tough times and the most vicious presidential campaign in history.

The Sleeping Giant Awakens

By Robin of Berkeley August 10, 2011 The American Thinker
One of my closest friends, "Gail," lives in a pristine suburb in northern New Jersey. It's one of those leafy bedroom communities where residents drive their Lexus SUVs to the railroad station each morning to catch the train to Manhattan.

After 9/11, Gail told me that eerily, several vehicles were left abandoned in the parking lot for weeks. Their drivers never returned home that day to retrieve them.

But, in general, not much goes on in her sleepy, idyllic town. The residents rave about shopping sprees to Loehmanns and sprints to Whole Foods for organic strawberries. There is no crime to speak of; the local paper blares news about a recent traffic accident or the opening of a Trader Joe's. So when Gail told me what happened to her son, I was absolutely dumbfounded.

As for Gail, like my former self, she's a staunch supporter of the Democratic Party. This isn't surprising given that she's a born-and-raised East Coast Jew. But, unlike the former me, Gail is a liberal, not a self-proclaimed progressive/leftist.

While many conservatives merge liberalism and leftism, there are huge differences between the two camps. Liberals, like Gail, want a kinder and gentler America.

They choose safe, suburban suburbs, with schools that (as of yet) do not radicalize their children. While it's the rare liberal who would display a flag on July 4, he still cares about this country, supports Israel, and is wary of radical Islam.

The progressive/leftists are an entirely different species entirely; they do not love this country or Israel. In fact, the far left would like nothing better than to knock the US and Israel down from their high horses.

Leftists sympathize with the "victims" of the United States, not those Americans who are brutalized by thugs or terrorists. The left practices third-worldism, the belief that the paths of Chavez and Lenin are vastly superior to our own Founding Fathers. Having become smitten by the renegade image of Che Guevara, they fashion themselves as post-modern revolutionaries, who set out, with a missionary zeal, to change the world.

Consequently, leftists turn a blind eye to the savagery of the third world, e.g. the burqua or beheadings. Progressives justify the brutality of gang violence and perhaps engage in mob behavior themselves. While they label conservatives as reactionary, leftists are, in truth, the true reactionaries, reacting against Mommy, Daddy, God, and country.

Like me, my liberal friend, Gail, voted for Hillary Clinton during the primary. Gale was pleased with the prospect of a female president and nostalgia for the "good old days" of husband, Bill. After Hillary lost, Gail was a Good Democrat, and chose Obama instead.

She voted for him, even though I tried and tried in vain to wake her up to the truth. I myself voted for Hillary until the ascent of Obama snapped me out of my lifetime progressive trance.

I saw that something was terribly wrong, that people were acting crazy around him. The multitudes were entranced, hypnotized, in a cult-like way. Even more disturbingly, the more emotionally unstable supporters were behaving violently towards any and all opponents. And Obama, taking in the whole scene, said nothing.

The smearing of the opposition, the misogyny directed at Hillary, the cloud of aggression that followed Obama around, like the grime that trailed after the cartoon character Pigpen, felt frightening to me, menacing, and creepy. It finally dawned on me that should Obama be elected, the dark and uncivilized behavior that I see in Berkeley would spread and multiply and envelope the entire country.

I tried my best to explain all of this to Gail; I pleaded with her to reconsider her automatic pilot vote for Obama. I pulled out all of the stops: I explained in painstaking detail what life was like in Berkeley, Oakland, and San Francisco under the radicals. I told her about walking a gauntlet of paranoid, drug-addled derelicts on Telegraph Avenue, about the frequent attacks on tourists in San Francisco. I reminded her of my own mugging , and informed her that everyone out here has a similar story -- or knows someone who does.

And, I told her, the worst part of it is that no one seems to care -- that citizens have become so programmed in the dogma of white privilege that they offer themselves and their children up as sacrificial lambs. Like the hostages of Stockholm, Berkeley-ites defend their abusers, protecting them rather than guarding themselves.

And finally I explained that Obama was cut from the same radical cloth -- that he surrounds himself with the type of militants who hold Berkeley captive. And, I warned her, should Obama be elected, the antisocial behavior that is tolerated in Berkeley will become the new normal all across the country.

Gail listened politely, though ultimately she voted for Obama. While she listened, she didn't really understand. Of course, she didn't -- how would she?

This wasn't her world. When you live in a safe, sheltered reality, you have no idea what it's like for people in Berkeley or Oakland or Detroit. You can't grasp what it's like to hear story after story of horrendous crime; of what it's like to attend a meeting at work one day and hear gunfire outside, as I did; or how it feels to walk to a restaurant on a cloudless blue-sky day and find yourself lying prostrate minutes later, with nose broken and two black eyes.

I didn't blame Gail; it is human nature to reject what we cannot relate to. It is impossible to fully grasp what another person goes through unless you walk in his shoes. You can't fully understand the horror of that moment when the doctor utters the word "cancer," nor the enormity of being a woman enslaved by a burqua. And you cannot comprehend what it's like to live in a place like Berkeley or, to take an even more extreme example, Zimbabwe, where gang violence is not just tolerated but it is heralded as part of a noble revolution.

You can't understand this, that is, until it happens to you.

Gail told me this week that her only child, Justin, was playing basketball in the well-manicured park down the street with his college-aged friends and his girlfriend. Suddenly they were surrounded by a group of black guys from somewhere else who began taunting them, invoking racist language.

Her son and his friends yelled at them to go away, but one young male lunged at Justin, punching him in the face. Justin fell and was knocked unconscious. The hoodlums then ran away; luckily, one of the kids got their license plate. I hope and pray that small-town USA takes unprovoked street violence more seriously than places like Berkeley.

Justin became conscious again after a few minutes, but he sustained a deep gash that required several stitches. Any head injury is potentially serious. But perhaps even more worrisome than his physical wounds are the emotional ones sustained by Justin and his friends.

These are good kids, well-raised, polite, and tolerant. They have held no malice towards anyone based on the color of skin.

But will racial hate now be planted in their hearts? Will it corrupt their trusting souls? Of course, everything that is happening right now, whether in New Jersey or Wisconsin, is purposeful.

The radicals want to promote anarchy. But it's more than this: they want the hate that blackens their souls to warp others as well.

My dear friend, Gail, was in tears, shell-shocked, incredulous. She kept repeating over and over again, "How could this happen? How could this happen?" She struggled to find the words for such barbarism; she had not a clue of how it could invade her insular world.

I spoke to Gail tenderly, as though I were calming down a frightened child stirring from a deep sleep.

"I'm so sorry, sweetie. This is horrible. Justin didn't deserve to be treated this way, and his friends didn't need to see such brutality.

"But, Gail, it's not just happening in your small town, but it's happening all over the country, and it's getting worse every day. There have been random mob violence against white people in Iowa , Chicago, Atlanta, in Wisconsin , where dozens of white people were beaten up, even pulled out of their own cars."

"But why?" Gail asked me plaintively. "Why is this happening now?"

"It's Obama," I explained. "It's what I told you a few years ago. This is what happens when you put someone in power like Obama. Something spreads, like a virus. It's subtle; it's almost invisible. But it poisons one person, and then another and another, until soon the whole country is corrupted.

"It's a sickness called hatred, Gail. Most black people are good, law-abiding, moral people. Obama comes from a far-left fringe group of militants who hate America and want to drag us down. Those same people have degraded and exploited poor black kids for years. These radicals use them as their foot soldiers. Obama would never get his own hands dirty

"I know these militants, Gail; I live among them. They hate America; they want to devolve us back into some primitive brute state. This is why things are getting worse and worse in this country: the economy, the Middle East, and hate crimes against whites."

After I finished, Gail was quiet for several seconds. Then she said, sounding heartbroken, "But he made so many promises. He seemed so nice. "

"Yes, that's true, sweetie," I answered. "But people aren't always as they seem."
Three years ago, I sounded the clarion call to my friend Gail to wake up and discern the person behind Obama's carefully crafted mask. I tried to make her see what would happen to this country if the radical left seized power.

Back then, she didn't understand what I was saying; she simply couldn't.
She is starting to understand now.


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Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Obama is Most Successful President of All

When I was teaching in college, and found myself to be a conservative in a cauldron of liberals, I kept making the mistake when debating them, that they also had the best interests of America in their hearts. It took me quite a while to figure out that most of these liberal college professors actually hated this country, and wanted to bring it down.

I keep making the same mistake in my reaction to the policies and programs that Obama champions, because it is becoming perfectly obvious to more and more Americans that, the worse things get here, the more he is succeeding in attaining his true goal: the humiliation and the weakening of a country Obama believes has been an oppressor of poor peoples thoughout the world.

To understand why he believes what he does, you need to read the book, “The Roots of Obama’s Rage" by Dinesh D'Souza in which he describes the impact Obama’s parents had on him, and how much he desires to implement the real “dream of his father”. Suffice it to say that, in his mind, we, the British and the French and most of the European countries carry the sin of colonialism and must be punished. Obama’s socialist leanings are secondary to his anti-colonialism.

Why else would he be buddies with William Ayers?

Why else would he sit for 20 years in a church listening to anti-American and anti-white rantings?

Why else would he cancel the anti-Iranian, anti-missile defense system the Poles and Czechs risked so much to deploy?

Why else would one of his first acts in office be the return of the Churchill bust and the insult to the Queen?

Why else is he trying to destroy Israel, a country he also considers a colonial criminal state?

Why did he immediately undercut Mubarek, while refusing to offer any support for the Iranian freedom marchers?

Why else has he destroyed our currency and our ability to repay our debts?

Why else does he go on and on about the so-called super rich and wanting to confiscate the wealth of successful businessmen?

Why else does he seem completely unconcerned about the unemployed - going to the podium about every six months to announce that :”Now I’m going to really work to get jobs”, but doing nothing?

I could go on with dozens of more examples, but I’ll stop here.

Of course, not every Obama act is in this vein. He also tries to do just enough to get re-elected, such as his support of the war in Afghanistan, where, incidentally, he changed the mission (the same as did Clinton in Somalia to disastrous results), and he changed the ROE (rules of engagement) so much that we are losing thousands of dead Americans for the first time and drove General McChrystal to distraction.

As someone whose parents were of white, European stock, I can say that I despise Obama almost as much as he despises me. He’s not the worst president since Carter, he is the most successful one - and the most dangerous to our freedom and prosperity!


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Monday, August 08, 2011

Obama Apologists and the Downgrade

Here are a few gems gleaned from cable news channels this weekend:

Standard and Poors was stupid to downgrade US bonds.

The Standard and Poors downgrade was political.

The Tea Party is responsible for the downgrade.

Standard and Poors made a mistake with their math.

We would have cut 4 trillion, but the Tea Party wouldn’t go along.

These huge cuts by the Tea Party will cause a depression.

Tea Party members are terrorists
(They don’t call Muslim mass murderers ‘terrorists’)

The media should not publish what Tea Party leaders say.
(Courtesy of Senator Kerry, the Vietnam hero)

“I believe this is, without question, the tea party downgrade”
(Also courtesy of Kerry)

“S&P had shown “terrible judgment”
(Treasury Secretary Geithner)

The cause of the downgrade was the reckless spending and borrowing by President Obama, and the unwillingness of the Obamaites to recognize the need for major cuts in spending, wholesale dumping of government regulations, cancelling of Obamacare and making America's tax code fairer and more competitive with other nations.

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Sunday, August 07, 2011

New Strategy For Ground Zero Mosque

New Strategy For Ground Zero Mosque

By JanSuzanne Krasner August 7, 2011 American Thinker

The Park51 project for a 15-story mosque/community center at Ground Zero, led by developer Sharif El-Gamal and Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, has dwindled down to a much smaller vision, a four or five-story 'PrayerSpace' and community center. This may be a far cry from their original plan, but many are bewildered as to why they are still moving ahead with any planned mosque at this site, given the tremendous negative opinion most Americans have of its location.

Sharif El-Gamal believes in his vision and he is committed to its location at Ground Zero. He admits that the introduction of his idea to the general public was "backwards" and now he is "going back to basics." He believes that he is acquiescing to the community's desire for the building not to tower over Ground Zero and states: "If the community only wants four or five floors, it's going to be four or five floors." This new shorter version will still require El-Gamal to raise about $10 million. He believes that depending on the community board's recommendations could take as much as five years before there are any changes to the Burlington Coat Factory building site.

Meanwhile, in spite of El-Gamal's insistence that he'd like to work with the community, the chairperson of the Community Board, Julie Menin, said that he has not responded to several of her requests to meet to discuss the plans that they would like to see implemented at 45-51 Park Place. Although the community board is not as interested in the blueprints of the building, they do want to have input into the public activities the center will offer. Menin commented: "A tremendous number of young families need services, like classes, recreation and athletic centers."

Since El-Gamal's purchase of this property last year (for $4.85 million in cash) this unpopular and contentious project has undergone several important developments as a result of pressure from the neighborhood community and the American public. El-Gamal has had trouble raising the necessary $150 million to build the original planned Park51, previously known as the 'Cordoba House' Mosque/Community Center at the site that is only two blocks from Ground Zero.

Back in early January, 2011 Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf and El-Gamal cut off their business ties. Rauf had taken on a greater quest, that of launching a global movement to fight misunderstanding of Islam and improve relations between people of different faiths and cultures. By late January the Park51 Group selected NYC Imam Abdullah Adhami as its senior advisor and one of several Imams who would eventually be picked to coordinate religious services in the mosque.

Americans have been able to witness the slow unraveling of a cover up by the Park51 Group to hide the radical intent of their planned Mosque. Feisal Abdul Rauf, the son of the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, claims to be a moderate. Through the hard work of Pamela Geller's organization 'Stop Islamitization of America' (SIOA), and other investigative journalists, Feisal was exposed for what he truly is, a Islamic extremist and NJ slum landlord. So off he went on greater conquests.

Then the non-profit Park51 Group selected Imam Adhami, a NYC Imam who was then heard in one of his sermons to call for 'Sharia Law;' who posted his opinion on a website that people with "homosexual feelings are the result of some form of violent emotional or sexual abuse at some point in their life;" and who was also proven to have links to Anti-American Imam Al-Hajj Talib Abdur-Rashid and terror supporter Imam Siraj Wahhaj. By early February Adhami quit.

According to Sharif El-Gamal the past year has taught him that he needs a new strategy, slower and more realistic, one he should have started before going public last year. He has spent the past year traveling around the country to garner supporters and has attempted to build relationships with the residents of the neighborhood and Muslim groups in NY, NJ and CT; and he has seduced the Aunt of a 9/11 victim to his advisory board. In addition to organized prayers, he has held events in Park51's makeshift space, including various art exhibits, yoga and Brazilian martial arts classes, to Muslim holiday ceremonies and discussions on bullying with Muslim and non-Muslim children. He says all of this will provide him with a better understanding of the community's needs to aid him in formulating a better community center.

El-Gamal's new tactic is in line with the moderate, non-violent global approach for Islamic conquest of Western societies. Terrorism is the tool of choice by radical Muslims. But, under the guise of love and peace, moderate Muslims populate neighborhoods and build Mosques as the tool to take over communities, one at a time. This is what has happened in Germany with multiculturalism, as well as France, Sweden, Spain, Australia, Denmark and the UK. Neighborhood after neighborhood, Muslims build up their population to an intimidating level where police do not even enter. They build their religious centers with leaders and literature that radicalizes their membership. They demand that 'Sharia Law' becomes the law of their enclave and the original residents are either driven out or run scared.

This pattern is starting in communities in America. Dear reader, please keep your eyes open and be aware. In each of these US cities there is a growing Muslim population: Dearborn, Detroit, Tampa, Philadelphia, Camden, Wilmington, Brooklyn, Los Angeles, Baltimore, Chicago, DC, Dallas, Houston, Ft. Worth, Atlanta, San Diego, Seattle, St. Louis, Columbus, Memphis and Miami and the residents are beginning to see a growing demand for 'Sharia Law' to take precedence over our civil courts.

Look at the college campuses where the Muslim Student Association, founded by the Muslim Brotherhood, have intimidated many of our youth into silence. Understand that 'Sharia' compliant financial demands are being met on Wall Street and in public and privately owned companies. Educate yourself about the hate and justifiable murder of Infidels that is part of 'Sharia Law' and is found in the Koran. And clearly understand that Islamists want to symbolize the conquest of America with a Mosque at Ground Zero that Arabs are calling a 'Rabat' (the point of contact at the heart of the infidel's territory that had been raided).

It will shortly be ten years since 9/11 and the Park51 Rabat is still being planned in the hallowed grounds of 9/11 under the protection of the Dhimmis of NYC. Here's hoping that in the five years El-Gamal needs to actually begin building his vision the American public will wake up to the real dangers of Islamic political ideology and the Mosque at Ground Zero will just go away.


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Saturday, August 06, 2011

Amy Winehouse and Social Security

Social Security benefits are financed by a payroll tax that was 6.2% of pay. This amount was paid both by employees and employers. When tax collections exceed the cost of benefits in any one year, the excess goes into a trust fund; when tax collections are insufficient to pay for benefits, the US Treasury pays the difference. Under President Obama, the Treasury has borrowed money to pay the difference, which happened in 2010 and is happening this year as well.

Last Year Obama cut the 6.2% tax only on employees by 2 points for one year. This had no effect of stimulating the economy, but it sharply reduced tax receipts so that the Treasury had to borrow even more billions to prop up Social Security.

During the recent debt increase negotiations, Obama wanted to extend this cut for another year, and he is still pursuing this move.

More Amy Winehouse government.


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Thursday, August 04, 2011

Amy Winehouse and Governing by Liberals

President Obama, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid are to be pitied; they just don't understand that everything they do, in the name of "jobs", destroys jobs. Every one of the thousands of new regulations they put in place destroys jobs. Every new tax they slipped in and the huge new taxes and costs coming from the implementation of Obamacare destroys jobs. Every time President Obama curses out businessmen and successful people, including those who dare to own or rent corporate jets, it destroys jobs as investors run for the hills.

And when Obama's stimulus program turned out not to finance "shovel-ready" jobs, but to save the jobs of public-sector union government workers and pay their pension benefits, more jobs were lost.

Of course, maybe they are really not interested in creating private sector jobs. Maybe they like things just the way they are.

Winehouse Government

By Ralph R. Reiland 8.4.11 American Spectator

It feels like we're dealing with an Amy Winehouse ​ form of governing.

"These overdoses happen because these guys drink 20 beers and then reach for their heroin," a friend of mine said after the late star's recent death, at 27. "You can't think straight once you're totally blitzed."

It seems the same with our politicians, overdosed on their own importance. Their non-straight thinking and out of control spending has already put us $14.3 trillion in the hole at the federal level, not counting the tens of trillions in unfunded entitlement liabilities, and they're still racking up $4 billion per day in new red ink.

Even with the deal in Congress to supposedly cut $2 trillion or $3 trillion in federal spending over the next 10 years, the national debt would still firmly be on a trajectory to increase by another $8 trillion to $10 trillion over the coming decade.

Part of the problem in all this is that eighth graders can't vote. The self-absorbed politicians, always fixated on their re-election, know it's safer to play Santa Claus ​ than Scrooge, and so we get more and more "free" goodies from the government and the re-elected politicians just keep passing the bill onto our children and grandchildren.

Per person, the national debt now comes to nearly $50,000 for every man, woman and child in America -- $200,000 for each family of four.

But not everyone's going to pay. No kid is going to pick up the tab from the sales at his lemonade stand, about 50 percent of households don't pay any federal income taxes, 20 percent of working-age American males between the ages of 25 and 54 are not working (and layoffs are increasing), so it's clear that the $50,000 debt burden per capita is going to be far from equally distributed.

"The national debt per taxpayer calculates to $128,000," reports Roy Filly at The Rugged Individualist .

But everyone shouldn't pay, according to President Obama's "I think when you spread the wealth around, it's good for everybody" redistributionist philosophy and leveling goals.

"According to our President, the 'rich' are the top 5 percent of earners," writes Filly. "If we divide the national debt among the top 5 percent of earners, then each of them owes $2,539,068. Importantly, the top 5 percent of earners range in earnings from something a bit more than $150,000 (which, by the way, is household income, not individual income) on up."

Obama doesn't adjust his definition of the "rich" for the different cost of living in different locations. A two-income couple living in Manhattan with total annual earnings of $150,000 aren't likely to see themselves as living high.

So let's change the target to the real super-rich to pay off the debt, the guys Obama likes to portray as joyriding around in their corporate jets. "Honey, let's gas up the Gulfstream and shoot over to Dairy Queen for some chocolate-vanilla twisties."

The "fair share" of the current national debt for these targeted super-rich? "The extremely affluent -- those making more than $1,500,000 per year -- would each owe $96,230,700, or every penny they make for the next 64 years," writes Filly.

Add the nearly $100 trillion in unfunded liabilities to the $14.3 trillion national debt and it's clear that we'd have to wipe out the entire upper class in order to make even a small dent in the red ink.

In an earlier era, pursuing his egalitarian utopia with vigor, Stalin slaughtered millions of kulaks, Russia's "rich" peasants, identified as those whose ramshackle shacks had two windows instead of one.

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