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ccp
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« Reply #300 on: October 08, 2009, 02:11:00 PM »

Russia must bee worried to see Obama send Biden to Poland, lol

This made my day!

Doug I don't know who is laughing louder, you, me, or Putin?  cheesy

The Chinese would be to if they weren't suckered into buying so much of our debt.
If monopoly money was worth anything we would all be rich.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #301 on: October 19, 2009, 11:09:50 AM »

The Foundation

"The construction applied ... to those parts of the Constitution of the United States which delegate Congress a power ... ought not to be construed as themselves to give unlimited powers, nor a part to be so taken as to destroy the whole residue of that instrument." --Thomas Jefferson


Health care at the DMV? Now serving number 33,573,901Government

"The most revelatory passage in the so-called 'plain English' version of the health care bill that the Senate Finance Committee approved on Tuesday (without ever drafting the actual legislative language) says that in the future Americans will be offered the convenience of getting their health insurance at the Department of Motor Vehicles. This is no joke. If this bill becomes law, it will be the duty of the U.S. secretary of health and human services or the state governments overseeing federally mandated health-insurance exchanges to ensure that you can get your health insurance at the DMV. You will also be able to get it at Social Security offices, hospitals, schools and 'other offices' the government will name later. Page 19 of the committee's 'plain English' text says: 'The Secretary and/or states would do the following: ... Enable customers to enroll in health care plans in local hospitals, schools, Departments of Motor Vehicles, local Social Security offices, and other offices designated by the state.' This is the bill's most revelatory passage because it sublimely symbolizes the bill's true aim: a government takeover of the health care system. You do not get food at the DMV. You do not even get auto insurance at the DMV. But under what The Associated Press inaptly calls the Finance Committee's 'middle-of-the-road health care plan,' you will get health insurance at the DMV." --columnist Terence Jeffrey

Opinion in Brief
"The magic number du jour is the number of Americans without health insurance. Apparently getting more people insured is another 'good thing' -- which is to say, it is something whose costs are not to be weighed against the benefits, or whose costs are to be finessed aside with optimistic projections or a claim that these costs can be covered by eliminating 'waste, fraud and abuse.' In real life, people weigh one thing against another. But in politics one declares one thing to be imperative, so the issue then becomes how we do it. In real life, all sorts of desirable things are not done, either because of other desirable things that would have to be sacrificed to do it or because of the dangers incurred in achieving the desired objective are worse than the problem we want to solve. Almost never are the dangers of having uninsured people weighed against the dangers of having government bureaucrats over-ruling doctors and deciding whether money would be better spent saving the life of an elderly person or paying for an abortion for some teenager. The crowning irony is that the problems caused by insurance companies refusing to pay for certain medications or treatment are to be solved by giving government bureaucrats that same power, along with the power to prevent patients from using their own money to pay for those same medications or treatments. More than two centuries ago, Edmund Burke said, 'Nothing is good but in proportion' -- that is, when weighed as a trade-off. But a prudent weighing of trade-offs does not produce the political melodrama of pursuing a 'good thing' measured by some magic number." --economist Thomas Sowell


Liberty
"Under Barack Obama, the United States has not been the friend of democrats around the world. America has responded weakly to the democratic movement in Iran, ended the funding of the largest pro-Iranian human rights groups in America, pressured democratic Israel, made overtures to Hugo Chavez while denying American ally and pro-democratic Colombia a free trade agreement, abandoned Honduran anti-Chavez democrats, and has obsequiously deferred to Vladimir Putin. ... The Oslo committee's view is, tragically, true. Thanks to Barack Obama, America is for the first time is aligning its values with those of 'the majority of the world's population.' If you think the world's population has had better values than America, that it has made societies that are more open, free, and tolerant than American society, and that it has fought for others' liberty more than America has, you should be delighted." --columnist Dennis Prager

The Gipper
"You and I are told we must choose between a left or right, but I suggest there is no such thing as a left or right. There is only an up or down. Up to man's age-old dream -- the maximum of individual freedom consistent with order -- or down to the ant heap of totalitarianism. Regardless of their sincerity, their humanitarian motives, those who would sacrifice freedom for security have embarked on this downward path. Plutarch warned, 'The real destroyer of the liberties of the people is he who spreads among them bounties, donations and benefits.' The Founding Fathers knew a government can't control the economy without controlling people. And they knew when a government sets out to do that, it must use force and coercion to achieve its purpose. So we have come to a time for choosing." --Ronald Reagan

Culture
"I am sympathetic to the story told by Joseph Rocha, who claims in a Washington Post opinion column that he was discharged from the Navy because he is gay, though he says he never told anyone. Rocha says his male colleagues concluded he was gay when he wouldn't laugh at their dirty jokes about women or visit prostitutes with them. Gay service members have a point when they claim a double standard exists for heterosexuals and homosexuals regarding sexual behavior. ... But we are beginning in the wrong place. The place to start is whether citizens of this country, through their elected representatives and the military leaders named by them, have a right to determine what type of service members best serve the interests, safety and security of the United States. I contend we do. The military should not be a test lab. Pressure is building to put female sailors on submarines, along with gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people presumably. That many heterosexuals find homosexual behavior immoral and not conducive to unit cohesion is of no concern to the social wrecking crew. What gay activists apparently don't care about is the effect reshaping the military in their image would have on our ability to fight and defend the country, which, after all, is the purpose of a military. ... The gays in the military and gay marriage issues are part of a broader attempt by liberals to restructure society. Social activists despise biblical morality (which heterosexuals could use a little more of, too), traditional values that have been proven to work when tried and numerous other cultural mores. This is not an opinion. It is also not a secret." --columnist Cal Thomas

 
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Political Futures
"Here's the joke. As boom- and bust-prone as high finance always has been and remains, the greatest systemic risk to our economy is not Wall Street. It's the growing federal debt (and weakening dollar) being enacted by those Washington politicians -- the ones who want to protect us from Wall Street. ... [T]he same Congress and president who want to stop the banks from taking too much risk cannot stop themselves from ever more deficits. Indeed, so intoxicated -- nay, hypnotized! -- by debt is the current government that it is not even proposing to try to cut back. Last week saw, at the same time: 1) the world shuddering about the debt-driven weakening dollar ('The biggest story in the world economy is the continuing fall of the U.S. dollar, or at least it is everywhere outside of Washington, D.C., the place most responsible for its declining value.' -- The Wall Street Journal) and 2) Washington cheering Sen. Max Baucus' health bill's spending levels ('Health Care Bill Gets Green Light in Cost Analysis' -- The New York Times). That's right. The federal government is giving the 'green light' for the country to drive to the poorhouse -- and drive there, I would argue, by way of the lunatic asylum. Are they nuts?" --columnist Tony Blankley

For the Record
"'What happened to global warming?' read the headline -- on BBC News on Oct. 9, no less. Consider it a cataclysmic event: Mainstream news organizations have begun reporting on scientific research that suggests that global warming may not be caused by man and may not be as dire and eminent as alarmists suggest. Indeed, as the BBC's climate correspondent Paul Hudson reported, the warmest year recorded globally 'was not in 2008 or 2007, but 1998.' It's true, he continued, 'For the last 11 years, we have not observed any increase in global temperatures.' ... Western Washington University geologist Don J. Easterbrook presented research last year that suggests that the Pacific decadal oscillation (PDO) caused warmer temperatures in the 1980s and 1990s. With Pacific sea surface temperatures cooling, Easterbrook expects 30 years of global cooling. EPA analyst Alan Carlin -- an MIT-trained economist with a degree in physics -- referred to 'solar variability' and Easterbrook's work in a document that warned that politics had prompted the EPA and other countries to pay 'too little attention to the science of global warming' as partisans ignored the lack of global warming over the last 10 years. At first, the EPA buried the paper, then it permitted Carlin to post it on his personal Web site. ... Over the years, global warming alarmists have sought to stifle debate by arguing that there was no debate. They bullied dissenters and ex-communicated non-believers from their panels. ... For a long time, that approach worked. But after 11 years without record temperatures that had the seas spilling over the Statue of Liberty's toes, they are going to have to change tactics. They're going to have to rely on real data, not failed models, scare stories and the Big Lie that everyone who counts agrees with them." --columnist Debra Saunders
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Freki
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« Reply #302 on: October 20, 2009, 07:46:29 AM »

This is a very good look at foreign policy

"Warmongers or Peacemakers: Who Will Be Responsible for Scorching the Earth?"

http://www.pjtv.com/v/2591
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #303 on: October 22, 2009, 07:27:39 AM »

Political Futures
"This year's awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to President Obama can only hasten the decline in prestige of an award that has already gone to people like Yasser Arafat, UN General Secretary Kofi Annan (who presided over the Iraqi oil-for-food scam) and the fabulist Guatemalan activist Rigoberta Menchu. For this year's Nobel, the deadline was February 1, barely ten days after Mr. Obama had assumed the presidency. Though the Nobel committee of five Norwegian politicians presumably considered the evidence over the summer, it's fair to say their award represents little more than wishful thinking that Mr. Obama's diplomatic efforts will ultimately bear fruit. Other U.S. Presidents have won Nobels, but for actual accomplishments. Teddy Roosevelt helped broker a peace treaty between Russia and Japan. Woodrow Wilson worked to build a lasting peace after the end of World War I, however unsuccessful that effort later proved. Even Jimmy Carter won the Peace Prize in 2002 after more than two decades of humanitarian efforts as a former president. The Nobel Committee is said often to make its final decision at its last meeting just before the announcement. If so, President Obama has gotten a consolation prize for the failure of the U.S. to secure the 2016 Olympics. But that won't take away the sense that his award has more to do with political correctness than the realities of peace. Reading the Nobel Committee's explanation of its decision, President Obama appears to have won this year's prize because he's not his predecessor, George W. Bush." --Wall Street Journal columnist John Fund

Culture
"It is absurd and it is embarrassing. It would even be infuriating if it were not such a declaration of emptiness. The Norwegian Nobel Committee has embarrassed itself and cheapened a great award that had real meaning. It was a good thing, the Nobel Peace Prize. Every year the giving of it was a matter of note throughout the world, almost a matter of state. It was serious. It mattered that it was given to a woman like Mother Teresa in 1979. ... Her life was heroic, epic, and when she was given the Nobel Peace Prize, it was as if the world were saying, 'You are the best we have. You are living a life that should be emulated.' ... Some Peace Prizes have been more roughly political, or had a political edge, and were of course debatable. ... It was always absurd that Ronald Reagan, whose political project led to the end of the gulag and the fall of the Berlin Wall, and who gambled his personal standing in the world for a system that would protect the common man from annihilation in a nuclear missile attack, could not win it. But nobody wept over it, and for one reason: because everyone, every sentient adult who cared to know about such things, knew that the Nobel Peace Prize is, when awarded to a political figure, a great and prestigious award given by liberals to liberals. NCNA -- no conservatives need apply. This is the way of the world, and so what? Life isn't for prizes. Yet even within that context, the giving of the peace prize to President Obama is absurd. He doesn't have a body of work; he's a young man; he's been president less than nine months. He hopes to accomplish much, and so far -- nine months! -- has accomplished little. Is this a life of heroic self-denial, of the sacrifice of self for something greater, of huge and historic consequence, of sustained vision? No it's not. Is this a life marked by a vivid and calculable contribution to the peace of the world? No, it's not. This is an award for not being George W. Bush. This is an award for not making the world nervous. This is an award for sharing the basic political sentiments and assumptions of the members of the committee. It is for what Barack Obama may do, not what he has done. He hasn't done anything. In one mindless stroke, the committee has rendered the Nobel Peace Prize a laughingstock." --columnist Peggy Noonan

Opinion in Brief
"The whole business of a bunch of Scandinavian worthies doling out the profits of a long-gone dynamite maker's fortune has always smacked of the worst sort of self-satisfied plutocratic worthiness. But this takes the biscuit. President Obama remains the barely man of world politics, barely a senator now barely a president, yet in the land of the Euro-weenies (copyright PJ O'Rourke) the great and the good remain in his thrall. To reward him for a blank results sheet, to inflate him when he has no achievements to his name, makes a mockery of what, let's face it, is an already fairly discredited process (remember Rigoberta Menchu in 1992? Ha!). That's not the point. What this does is accelerate the elevation of President Obama to a comedy confection, which he does not deserve, and gives his critics yet another bat to whack him with. Shame on the Norwegians." --London's Daily Telegraph chief political commentator Benedict Brogan


Insight
"After having thus successively taken each member of the community in its powerful grasp and fashioned him at will, the supreme power then extends its arm over the whole community. It covers the surface of society with a network of small, complicated rules, minute and uniform, through which the most original minds and the most energetic characters cannot penetrate, to rise above the crowd. The will of man is not shattered, but softened, bent, and guided; men seldom forced by it to act, but they are constantly restrained from acting. Such a power does not destroy, but it prevents existence; it does not tyrannize, but it compresses, enervates, extinguishes, and stupefies a people, till each nation is reduced to nothing better than a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd." --French historian Alexis de Tocqueville (1805-1859)

Government
"A pattern has emerged. Liberal citizens and politicians during the Bush years were permitted to speak out against the Iraq war, root for an American defeat, and cheer with the news of each dead American, and they were labeled patriots. An American speaks out against Obama's socialist policies and he is labeled anti-American. A liberal is able to chant anti-Bush slogans and compare him to Hitler and he is exercising his right to free speech. An American questions Obama's judgment both domestically and on the international stage and he is called a racist. I have attempted to point out to liberal friends and family that if they simply took the vast majority of offensive statements, policies, or actions of Obama over the past nine months and imagined them emanating from Bush, they would see the hypocrisy in their stance -- to no avail. They are content to sit back and watch this administration gut the Constitution, usurp power wherever it can find it, ignore the intent of the founders of this country and the successes of the free market economy which helped lead us to the position of the only world's superpower. But they will wake up in a few years to find that their children are not safe from harm's way, their grandchildren will be working off the enormous debt incurred by this government and will never achieve the economic success of their grandparents, and when they need medical care, they will be waiting in line like the Europeans and Canadians who used to turn to the US in times of emergency. Yet they will have their civil rights, for as long as Bush is not the one authorizing the wiretapping of their cell phones, all is good. Another bottle of champagne anyone?" --columnist Lauri Regan

Re: The Left
"[Liberals lie that] America's lower life expectancy compared to countries with socialist health care proves that their medical systems are superior. President Obama has too much intellectual pride to make such a specious argument, so instead we have to keep hearing it from his half-wit supporters. These Democrats are all over the map on where precisely Americans place in the life-expectancy rankings. We're 24th, according to Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Barbara Boxer; 42nd, according to Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell; 35th, according to Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson; and 47th, according to Rep. Dennis Kucinich. So the U.S. may have less of a 'life expectancy' problem than a 'Democratic math competency' problem." --columnist Ann Coulter

The Gipper
"This democracy of ours which sometimes we've treated so lightly, is more than ever a comfortable cloak, so let us not tear it asunder, for no man knows once it is destroyed where or when he will find its protective warmth again." --Ronald Reagan

Liberty
"The White House insists that the president is hard at work on what to do about Afghanistan, and whether to send more troops to fuel a 'surge' like the surge that prevented a collapse of the West's attempt to rescue Iraq from barbarism and restore a fragile semblance of civilization. The brave young Americans put in harm's way in that godforsaken corner of the world often feel abandoned in a hopeless cause, so the president should feel the pressure to act, and quickly. But the problem is 'multilayered,' his spokesman says. Translated into real English, that means 'he hasn't yet figured out which layer of public opinion to appease, and which layer to disappoint.' He'll do something as soon as he figures out which disappointed layer would squeak loudest and scream longest." --Washington Times editor emeritus Wesley Pruden

 
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For the Record
"On March 27, flanked by his secretaries of defense and state, the president said this: 'Today I'm announcing a comprehensive new strategy for Afghanistan and Pakistan.' He then outlined a civilian-military counterinsurgency campaign to defeat the Taliban in Afghanistan. ... The general in charge was then relieved and replaced with Obama's own choice, Stanley McChrystal. And it's McChrystal who submitted the request for the 40,000 troops, a request upon which the commander in chief promptly gagged. The White House began leaking an alternate strategy, apparently proposed (invented?) by Vice President Biden, for achieving immaculate victory with arm's-length use of cruise missiles, Predator drones and special ops. The irony is that no one knows more about this kind of warfare than Gen. McChrystal. He was in charge of exactly this kind of 'counterterrorism' in Iraq for nearly five years, killing thousands of bad guys in hugely successful under-the-radar operations. When the world's expert on this type of counterterrorism warfare recommends precisely the opposite strategy -- 'counterinsurgency,' meaning a heavy-footprint, population-protecting troop surge -- you have the most convincing of cases against counterterrorism by the man who most knows its potential and its limits. And McChrystal was emphatic in his recommendation: To go any other way than counterinsurgency would lose the war. Yet his commander in chief, young Hamlet, frets, demurs, agonizes. His domestic advisers, led by Rahm Emanuel, tell him if he goes for victory, he'll become LBJ, the domestic visionary destroyed by a foreign war. His vice president holds out the chimera of painless counterterrorism success. Against Emanuel and Biden stand Gen. David Petraeus, the world's foremost expert on counterinsurgency (he saved Iraq with it), and Stanley McChrystal, the world's foremost expert on counterterrorism. Whose recommendation on how to fight would you rely on?" --columnist Charles Krauthammer

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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #304 on: October 30, 2009, 10:29:15 AM »

Digest · Friday, October 30, 2009

The Foundation
"Were we directed from Washington when to sow, and when to reap, we should soon want bread." --Thomas Jefferson

Government & Politics
Just When You Thought It Was Safe
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) unveiled an $894 billion health care takeover bill Thursday; the Congressional Budget Office puts the cost at $1.055 trillion. The bill, a combination of three separate committee bills, should be light reading for our nation's lawmakers, though -- it weighs in at a scant 1,990 pounds, er, pages.

The "reform" plan includes the dreaded "public option" that many thought might be dead and buried. The public option would create a government-run insurance plan to "compete" with private insurance. The obvious problem -- at least to those who understand the free market -- is that it would have several negative effects on health care and the economy. Many employers would drop their insurance coverage in favor of the small penalty paid to the federal government in exchange for putting employees on the government dole. Indeed, an estimated 120 million customers would leave private insurers. With fewer people buying private insurance, many insurance companies would increase rates, further restrict coverage, or go out of business altogether, thus creating a vicious death spiral.

Such a scenario would, of course, suit Pelosi and other Democrats just fine. They continue to condemn the "immoral" and "obscene" profits made by the insurance industry, though as it turns out, those profits are not so obscene after all, but are around 2 percent.

The public option is so unpopular that Pelosi is now trying to re-brand it, suggesting the "consumer option" or the "competitive option" as alternatives. "You'll hear everyone say, 'There's got to be a better name for this,'" Pelosi said. "When people think of the public option, public is being misrepresented, that this is being paid for with their public dollars."

Uh, Nancy, it will be. And by their great grandchildren's dollars.

The bill will "provide" insurance for up to 36 million people by broadly expanding Medicaid and by giving subsidies to moderate-income Americans so they can buy insurance from either private companies or the new government-run plan. "Can buy" in this case means "have to buy" because of a newly minted unconstitutional mandate to buy insurance. And, the subsidies would be paid for in part with a surtax on individuals earning more than $500,000 and couples earning more than $1 million.

In the Senate, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) is working on an "opt out" provision for states that don't wish to participate in the public option, though he's not gaining much support. As currently written, the opt-out would cost states even more money because of the additional funding measures (read: strings) attached.

It would be similar to federal education guidelines, which states can opt out of -- at the expense of federal funding -- or the federally mandated drinking age states can ignore -- if they don't want federal highway money. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) pointed out last week that the federal government used to regulate speed limits, and again, states could "opt out" at the loss of federal highway funding.

It seems that Don Corleone Reid's public option is an offer states can't refuse.

Quote of the Week
"It's not free. ... Someone's going to have to pay for it and you bet it's going to be the taxpayer." --Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) on the "public option"

The BIG Lie
Congressman Bart Stupak of Michigan is a rarity among Democrats -- one who believes the federal government shouldn't pay for abortions. When President Obama told a joint session of Congress in September that "under our plan no federal dollars will be used to fund abortions," Stupak wondered how that was possible when both the House and Senate bills allow federal funding of insurance plans that cover abortions.

In speaking with the president about this apparent contradiction, Stupak found it's only the (unwritten) health care reform plan in Obama's mind that doesn't fund abortions. Unfortunately, the bill the president would sign is one of those thousand-plus page behemoths circulating through both houses of Congress -- or a combination of both.

Stupak wanted to add a prohibition similar to the longstanding Hyde Amendment preventing funding of abortions to the House bill but was told by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, "I will not have my amendment." Instead, placed in the House plan was a "compromise" where just one provider in each state's insurance exchange is required to cover abortions. Some compromise.

From the Left: Barney Speaks Frankly
Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) got a little too comfortable on MSNBC recently and let slip what many of Americans already fear. After taking a few moments to blame Republicans for ruining big government's reputation, Frank said, "We are trying on every front to increase the role of government in the regulatory area." This from a man whose fingerprints were all over the drive to force mortgage lenders to grant home loans to fiscally risky candidates in order to increase minority home ownership. The end result of that move was, of course, the subprime mortgage meltdown and the resulting economic mess we're mired in today.

Frank, chairman of the House Banking Committee, is now one of the principal architects of sweeping regulatory changes to the financial services industry. These changes are meant to prevent the rampant speculation that caused the credit crisis; in reality they're more likely to strangle our free market system and send wealth-creating capital investment overseas. What Frank said is all too true: Democrats aim to expand government in every area, period.

New & Notable Legislation
Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd (D-CT) has introduced legislation to freeze credit card interest rates. "At a time when families are struggling to make ends meet, jacked up rates can quickly create crushing debt," Dodd said in a statement. "People need to be responsible with their money, but they shouldn't be taken to the cleaners by outrageous rates." This follows a bill passed in May -- the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act -- which bars rate increases without a 45-day notification. Since that bill is due to take effect in February, banks, not being stupid, are raising their rates now. Thanks, Chris. All we need now is a law that forbids banks from canceling cards or refusing credit for any customers. Why do Democrats think that problems created by regulation can be fixed only with more regulation?

New York Congressional Special Election
The special election to fill the upstate New York congressional seat vacated when Republican John McHugh was cleverly appointed secretary of the Army by Barack Obama has quickly become the most controversial race this year.

The Democrat candidate is businessman and lawyer Bill Owens, but the real contest here is between Conservative Party candidate Doug Hoffman, who is even leading in some polls, and Republican candidate Dede Scozzafava. As we have previously noted, Hoffman, a self-made millionaire, assumed the Conservative mantle after local GOP leaders picked the shamefully liberal Scozzafava as their candidate.

National Republican figures have come out in force to back either Hoffman or Scozzafava, and by doing so they have outlined the ideological battle lines that exist within the GOP. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich endorsed Scozzafava, a New York Assemblywoman. Gingrich said that it's not his place to question the wisdom of local party leaders, while he also expressed concern that if "we're going to purge the party of anybody who doesn't agree with us 100 percent [then] that guarantees Obama's re-election."

Gingrich may have a point here, but looking at Scozzafava's background, one might wonder if she's agreed with the Party even 10 percent of the time. She has been tied to ACORN and their leftist Working Families Party, she is pro-choice, pro-stimulus package and pro-card check for unions. In fact, she makes party-jumpin' Arlen Specter look like a Reaganite.

Hoffman, on the other hand, is an avowed fiscal conservative who carries a strong message of bringing economic responsibility to Washington. Sarah Palin, Tim Pawlenty, Dick Armey, Fred Thompson and Rick Santorum have all lined up behind him. They have all stressed the importance of sticking to the conservative principles that are, or at least were, the backbone of the Republican Party.

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National Security
Warfront With Jihadistan: 'Dithering' Continues
The commander in chief has taken some well-deserved lumps of late for "dithering" on this decision regarding troop numbers in Afghanistan. Indeed, it's been two months since General Stanley McChrystal made his urgent request to President Obama for more troops. During a visit to Naval Air Station Jacksonville on Monday, Obama said, "I will never rush the solemn decision of sending you into harm's way." To reiterate what we said last week in response to a similar comment from Defense Secretary Robert Gates, perhaps Obama should tell this to our troops in Afghanistan, understaffed and looking death in the eye.

No worries, though -- John F. Kerry has his back. The new Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman declared that Gen. McChrystal's plan "goes too far, too fast." Let the record show that the Massachusetts Democrat was for winning in Afghanistan before he was against it. Five years ago, he ran against George W. Bush and repeatedly droned that Bush had "taken his eye off the ball" by seeking to also win in Iraq.

As columnist Ken Blackwell writes, "Kerry made his career as an outspoken advocate for the Nuclear Freeze of the 1980s. We now know that the Freeze movement was largely financed by the Kremlin. But even back then, American advocates of the Nuclear Freeze had the satisfaction of knowing they wanted the U.S. to back down in the face of Soviet threats while Britain's Margaret Thatcher, West Germany's Helmut Kohl, and even France's Francois Mitterrand wanted us to stand firm. With a record of being wrong on virtually every issue involving American interests and national security, there is only one question left about the long-faced Massachusetts senator: How has John Kerry managed to avoid winning a Nobel Peace Prize?"

UN-Believable
Agence France-Presse (AFP) reports, "US drone strikes against suspected terrorists in Afghanistan and Pakistan could be breaking international laws against summary executions, the UN's top investigator of such crimes said." UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial Executions Philip Alston said, "The problem with the United States is that it is making an increased use of drones/Predators [which are] particularly prominently used now in relation to Pakistan and Afghanistan." He added, "My concern is that drones/Predators are being operated in a framework which may well violate international humanitarian law and international human rights law."

Obviously, our objective is not to kill innocent civilians, and the drones have been highly successful against terrorists, particularly in Pakistan. That's probably why the UN is now so "concerned." According to AFP, "Since August 2008, around 70 strikes by unmanned aircraft have killed close to 600 people in northwestern Pakistan." Admittedly, it's often difficult to tell the difference between regular "people" and terrorists, but AFP makes no attempt to distinguish the two. They're almost as UN-helpful as the UN.

Department of Military Correctness: 'Don't Ask' Discharges
As mentioned two weeks ago, Barack Obama announced that he remains committed to scrapping the Pentagon's 16-year-old "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy, which was implemented in 1993 by President Bill Clinton. The policy itself weakened the military's historic ban on homosexuals serving in the military. One of the arguments used by homosexual activists trying to overturn DADT is that discharging openly homosexual soldiers threatens national security by significantly reducing troop numbers. As so often occurs with leftist arguments, once facts are checked, the argument falls apart.

In examining the latest data on military discharges, it turns out that the number of military personnel discharged for homosexuality was less than 1 percent of the total number discharged for all other reasons. For example, according to Pentagon numbers for 2008, some 634 soldiers were discharged for homosexuality, which is only 0.338 percent of the 187,331 total discharges in 2008. Got that? One-third of 1 percent of all discharges was for violating DADT, and that number has remained consistent over the years. So, while the actual affect of these discharges on the U.S. military is negligible, according to homosexual activists, this loss threatens national security.

What actually threatens our national security is the loss of military discipline, cohesion and moral standing that occurs when agenda driven pressure groups and spineless lawmakers attempt to "normalize" an abnormal behavior in the ranks -- a fact recognized by our Founders. During the Revolutionary War, General George Washington had homosexuals drummed out of the ranks and punished; Thomas Jefferson authored a bill proposing castration as a punishment for sodomy; and the Continental Congress directed that American officers "discountenance and suppress all dissolute, immoral, and disorderly practices," which included sodomy. Ah, but there's nothing like "evolving standards."

Defense Bill Signed
Barack Obama signed the $680 billion defense authorization bill Wednesday. The bill contains the unrelated provision extending so-called "hate crimes" protections to homosexuals and others with gender-disorientation pathology. The measure had failed on its own for years, so Democrats shamelessly attached it to the must-pass defense bill. That failure is largely due to the fact that it makes certain thoughts a crime. Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN) summed it up: "Hate crimes legislation is antithetical to the First Amendment, unnecessary and will have a chilling effect on religious freedom."

Meanwhile, the defense bill contains provisions far more deleterious to national defense, such as terminating production of the F-22. Of gutting the nation's air superiority, Obama crowed that he was being fiscally responsible: "When Secretary Gates and I first proposed going after some of these wasteful projects, there were a lot of people who didn't think it was possible, who were certain we were going to lose, who were certain that we were going to get steamrolled. Today, we have proven them wrong." He then added, "There's still more fights that we need to win." (Like the fight against bad grammar, maybe?)

Obviously, to Democrats, "defense" means pushing aberrant sexual behavior while leaving the nation defenseless.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #305 on: October 30, 2009, 10:30:04 AM »

Business & Economy

Regulatory Commissars: Oil Off Limits for Thriving Bears
Believing themselves to be smarter than the average bear, bureaucrats in the Obama administration continue their quest to create a, well, bear market -- at least for oil. The White House decided to designate more than 200,000 square miles of Alaskan land and coastline as "critical habitat" for polar bears -- the same bear population that has reached greater numbers than previously recorded in history. In fact, despite what Al Gore and his fellow global warmists would have us believe, the population has actually risen by 40 percent since 1974.

This new non-endangered species habitat is enormous enough to qualify as the third largest state in the union, placing it between Texas and California in terms of square miles. Former UnitedHealth general counsel and now Assistant Interior Secretary Tom Strickland claimed at a news conference that the greatest threat to the bear is Arctic ice melt and that "we will continue to work to protect the polar bear and its fragile environment."

However, the new designation as a critical habitat is the first step in requiring even more government consideration of the supposed negative effect on the escalating polar bear numbers before allowing oil and gas development. The state of Alaska responded by filing a complaint in an effort to stop the listing under the Endangered Species Act.

In the meantime, some 30 percent of the world's gas supplies and 4 percent of the estimated global oil supply will be placed off limits because of this deceitful claim that the polar bear population is endangered. Next up, the loggerhead turtle, which, if listed as endangered, would bring regulations on everything along the eastern seaboard, including what lights you can put on the ocean-facing side of your house.

Income Redistribution: Public Option Phones
Bill Clinton may have declared in 1996, "The era of big government is over," but Obama must have missed the message. Never in American history has the era of big government encroached on so many areas of our lives -- and with more on the docket. We can now add another one to the list: Safelink Wireless, a "government supported program that provides a free cell phone and airtime each month for income-eligible customers," all paid for with "Obama money" -- and you know where that comes from.

SafeLink is an extension of or adjunct to the FCC program known as "Lifeline and Link-up." In a nutshell, "poor" people, often already on the dole with other state and federal welfare programs, can apply to receive a free cell phone and 70 minutes of airtime per month from TracFone Wireless, Inc. The Lifeline program pays one-half (up to $30) of installation costs for wired telephone service at a primary residence and provides up to a $10 per month discount for basic monthly service. Oh well, at least these recipients are required to pay some of the costs from their bi-monthly "county" checks. The program uses funds from those little universal service fund (USF) charges that show up on our phone bills. Of course, Lifeline program participants are exempt from USF charges on their bills.

Once again, we're left scratching our heads and searching for the Article and Section of the Constitution under which free phones can be found.

Barack Obama's Flying Circus
If Monty Python were a financial news agency, we could imagine the headline "Dow Exceeds 10,000 to Much Rejoicing." The media devoted multiple column inches and minutes of airtime to that event last week, but few asked, "Why?" The short answer is currency devaluation. Barack Obama's strategy of talking down the U.S. economy has produced its first dividend for his administration, a surging Dow supported by foreign investment. But, like agricultural commodities in the 1970s and commercial real estate in the 1980s, these gains are due solely to the weakness of our currency rather than the strength of our economy. A dollar with lower value makes buying American assets more attractive to foreigners. Each of those previous examples saw a short term increase in values followed by profit taking and a long-term decline. Sure the Dow is over 10K, but what's the dollar worth?

Furthermore, the market bottomed out at 6,500 before beginning its recovery in March, when, as The Washington Times points out, "[T]he Obama administration stopped trying to talk down the economy." Also, "The bottom line is obvious. Part of the increase in stock prices is illusory from the falling dollar. A lot of the remaining increase is simply a recovery from the Obama administration's rhetoric talking down the market." Unfortunately, if they're not talking it down, they're trying to beat it down with regulations.

That doesn't mean that Team Obama won't take credit for any improvement in the market or the economy as a whole. When the newest estimate of 3.5 percent economic growth in the third quarter was announced this week, Obama said the country has "come a long way" since his inauguration, and the new figures are "an affirmation that this recession is abating and the steps we've taken have made a difference." The White House went further Friday, claiming that the $787 billion stimulus has "created or saved" at least 650,000 jobs, or one million if all spending is considered. Yet unemployment is 9.8 percent and rising, so most of those jobs must have been "saved" -- which is a clever way of saying we'll never know.

Culture & Policy
Around the Nation: Swine Flu Emergency!
The Obama administration has, for the second time in six months, declared the H1N1 virus, or swine flu, a national emergency. The administration first made this declaration in April, but perhaps they needed a bit more time to stir up the desired frenzy. And set up a Web site -- flu.gov. Americans are now running to the hospital by the thousands, overcrowding emergency rooms and standing in line for their shots when often the provider has already run out of vaccine. However, all this panic is driven not as much by their physical symptoms as by a government-run campaign of hysteria.

The administration has made much of the fact that approximately 1,000 Americans have died and another 20,000 have been hospitalized after falling ill with H1N1. But, according to the Centers for Disease Control, these numbers, while tragic, are actually much smaller than the number of deaths each year from more commons strains of flu. As a matter of fact, Australia and New Zealand, which did not use the H1N1 vaccine, have reported fewer flu deaths this year than in the past.

The declaration of a national emergency has also increased the powers of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. She now has the authority, for as long as this "crisis" lasts, to sidestep certain federal laws that govern the use of tax dollars for medical treatment.

While some claim this is an administrative move that will allow the government to preempt a possible pandemic, for others it brings to the forefront issues concerning the quality and reliability of government-controlled health care. Imagine, for example, that we really were in danger of dying from a disease for which the government's much bragged about supply of vaccinations had fallen so woefully short?

American journalist H.L. Mencken once said, "The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed, and hence clamorous to be led to safety, by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary." Perhaps flu.gov stands for "Fear-mongering Leftists Unlimited."

Second Amendment: NJ Court Says No Right to Buy Handgun
"A New Jersey appeals court has concluded that Americans have no Second Amendment right to buy a handgun," CBS News reports. "[T]he superior court upheld a state law saying that nobody may possess 'any handgun' without obtaining law enforcement approval and permission in advance." Given that the Supreme Court ruled last year in DC v. Heller that the Second Amendment guarantees "the individual right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation," this ruling is a bit surprising. New Jersey Appellate Division Judge Stephen Skillman, writing for the unanimous three-judge panel, said that Heller "has no impact upon the constitutionality of" the state law.

It's true that the Supreme Court avoided some larger questions in Heller, even specifically saying that the ruling does "not address the licensing requirement." However, the Second Amendment to the Constitution reads: "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." Based on our reading of that plain language, there's nothing in there about permission from a court or law enforcement for particular arms. We hope the Supreme Court addresses this question when it hears McDonald v. Chicago, challenging Chicago's handgun ban, later this year.

Climate Change This Week: China, India, Cats and Dogs
Lashing out at the growing skepticism that global warming is real, Barack Obama last week blasted as agenda-driven "[t]he naysayers" who "pretend that this is not an issue." According to Obama, "From China to India, from Japan to Germany, nations everywhere are racing to develop new ways to produce and use energy." But the issue may not be important enough, even to the president. It seems he will skip the much-touted Copenhagen climate conference and instead drop by Oslo to accept his Nobel Peace Prize.

Could this be because "racing" China and India came to a screeching halt last Thursday when they nixed mandatory carbon emissions constraints, effectively pulling out of any Copenhagen treaty? These two nations recognize what Obama denies and what Wang Jin wrote in China's Science Times journal: "The real intention is not for the global temperature increase, but for the restriction of the economic development of the developing countries."

Meanwhile, two professors from New Zealand have actually suggested ditching cats and dogs in favor of edible pets -- and, no, we're not talking animal crackers. In their book, "Time to Eat the Dog? The Real Guide to Sustainable Living," Brenda and Robert Vale contend that when you account for food production and carbon emissions, a cat is about as a bad for the environment as a Volkswagen Golf, a medium-size dog is twice as destructive as a Toyota Land Cruiser, and two hamsters are equivalent to a plasma TV. The authors write, "There is certainly some truth in the fact that if we have edible pets like chickens for their eggs and meat, and rabbits and pigs, we will be compensating for the impact of other things on our environment."

What to do with the surplus of Rovers and Fluffies? Perhaps they should be served à la carte at Copenhagen. Given such consistently outlandish arguments from the global warming crowd, we don't expect any waiting lines at Copenhagen diners.

From the 'Non Compos Mentis' File
In a no doubt fleeting act of fairness and balance, CNN's Campbell Brown actually stuck up for rival Fox News in an interview this week with White House adviser Valerie Jarrett. And it didn't take long for Jarrett's answers to turn humorous. Here's the exchange:

Brown: So do you think Fox News is biased?

Jarrett: Well, of course they're biased. Of course they are.

Brown: Okay. Then do you also think that MSNBC is biased?

Jarrett: Well, you know what? This is the thing. I don't want to -- actually, I don't want to just generalize all Fox is biased or that another station is biased. I think what we want to do is look at it on a case-by-case basis. And when we see a pattern of distortion, we're going to be honest about that pattern of distortion.

Brown: But you only see that at Fox News? That's all that -- you have spoken out about Fox News.

Jarrett: That's actually not true. I think that what the administration has said very clearly is that we're going to speak truth to power.

It's quite amusing how quickly Jarrett backpedaled when confronted with her own bias; she clearly wasn't prepared for the MSNBC question. Not that Brown acknowledged CNN's bias, mind you.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #306 on: November 12, 2009, 10:12:43 AM »

By KARL ROVE
Republican victories in New Jersey and Virginia governors' races last week—despite eight campaign appearances in the two states by President Barack Obama—have unnerved Democrats.

Over the weekend, White House Senior Adviser David Axelrod tried to calm jittery Democrats who might go wobbly on the president's ambitious agenda by telling NBC's Chuck Todd that next year's congressional elections will be "nationalized." Because they "will be a referendum on this White House," he said, voters will turn out for Mr. Obama. Mr. Todd summed up Mr. Axelrod's plans by saying, "It's almost like a page from the Bush playbook of 2002."

I appreciate the reference. Only two presidents have picked up seats in both houses of Congress for their party in their first midterm elections. One was FDR in 1934. The other was George W. Bush in 2002, whose party gained House seats and won back control of the Senate.

But those midterm elections might not be a favorable comparison for this White House. The congressional elections were nationalized seven years ago largely because national security was an overriding issue and Democrats put themselves on the wrong side of it by, among other things, catering to Big Labor.

At the time, there was a bipartisan agreement to create the new Department of Homeland Security. Democrats insisted that every inch of the department be subject to collective bargaining. They pushed for this even though sections of every other department can be declared off-limits to unionization for national security reasons. What Democrats wanted was shortsighted and dangerous. Voters pounded them for it.

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REUTERS
 .Mr. Bush also had a record of bipartisanship that included winning passage of the No Child Left Behind Act with the support of Democrats Sen. Ted Kennedy and Rep. George Miller. And he had a popular agenda of tax cuts, regulatory reform, and sound leadership in the wake of 9/11 that the GOP could run on. Mr. Obama lacks a comparable foundation.

Instead, the narrative Obama White House officials are writing about themselves is that they are uncompromising, ungracious, and ready to run roughshod over popular opinion. They have mastered the Chicago way of politics: reward friends, punish enemies, and jam the opposition. Voters have a tendency to quickly grow tired of pugnacious governance.

That's only the beginning of Mr. Axelrod's problems. If the 2010 midterms are nationalized, they will be a referendum on Mr. Obama's increasingly unpopular policies. For example, in the newest Gallup survey released on Monday, only 29% say they'd advise their congressman to vote for the health-care bill. This is down from 40% last month. A Rasmussen poll out this week shows that 42% of Americans strongly oppose the bill, while only 25% strongly favor it.

Mr. Obama is increasingly seen as governing from the left—the latest Gallup poll shows that 54% of Americans say the president's policies have been mostly liberal and only 34% say they are mostly moderate. That's a risky position to be in when the country leans to the right.

High unemployment and the president's low approval on jobs and the economy (which is at 46% in a CNN/Opinion Research poll released last week), won't by themselves sink Democrats. But what will hurt are the beliefs that Mr. Obama's $787 billion stimulus bill was a flop and that he doesn't know how to speed up the economic recovery.

Mr. Obama's approval on handling the deficit in the CNN/Opinion Research survey is now 39%. The president's plans to triple the deficit over the next decade is causing a level of angst among independents that we haven't seen since Ross Perot ran for president in the 1990s. This angst has given Republicans a four-point lead in Gallup's generic ballot (48% to 44%), putting the party in a better position than it was in spring 1994, just a few months before its historic takeover of Congress.

About Karl Rove
Karl Rove served as Senior Advisor to President George W. Bush from 2000–2007 and Deputy Chief of Staff from 2004–2007. At the White House he oversaw the Offices of Strategic Initiatives, Political Affairs, Public Liaison, and Intergovernmental Affairs and was Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy, coordinating the White House policy making process.

Before Karl became known as "The Architect" of President Bush's 2000 and 2004 campaigns, he was president of Karl Rove + Company, an Austin-based public affairs firm that worked for Republican candidates, nonpartisan causes, and nonprofit groups. His clients included over 75 Republican U.S. Senate, Congressional and gubernatorial candidates in 24 states, as well as the Moderate Party of Sweden.

Karl writes a weekly op-ed for The Wall Street Journal, is a Newsweek columnist and is now writing a book to be published by Simon Schuster. Email the author at Karl@Rove.com or visit him on the web at Rove.com.

Or, you can send him a Tweet@karlrove.
.Democrats increasingly recognize their vulnerability. Of the 80 House Democrats whose districts were carried by Mr. Bush or John McCain, nine voted against the stimulus, 21 against a budget resolution that called for doubling the national debt in four years, 36 against cap and trade, and 36 against health care. Defections will grow. Nothing concentrates a troubled centrist's mind like a coming election.

Maybe the Obama inner sanctum realizes that its agenda is unpopular and will cost many Democrats their seats next year but calculates that enough will survive to keep the party in control of Congress. Perhaps they have decided that Mr. Obama's goal of turning America into a European-style social democracy is worth risking a voter revolt.

Many Democrats who will be on the ballot next year may come to a different conclusion. Nationalizing the elections over an unpopular agenda isn't likely to repeat Mr. Bush's feat of picking up congressional seats. It is, however, likely to lead to more Republican congressmen than are there now.

Mr. Rove is the former senior adviser and deputy chief of staff to President George W. Bush.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #307 on: January 08, 2010, 11:52:01 AM »

He had several interesting predictions including the iPad, a selloff before the 15% capital gains rate disappears and Lance Armstrong winning his 8th Tour.  I liked this one:

Democratic Majorities Cut to 53-47 in Senate and 219-216 in the House in 2010.
This will be the worst outcome for President Obama, as he'll have to run
for re-election in 2012 with the Speaker Pelosi albatross.

Winning congress in 2010 is a goal that would accomplish very little in this angry partisan environment.  Nothing passed would be signed.  Nothing repealed would get signed.  No vetoes would be over-ridden.  Also as Karlgaard picks up is that America likes divided government.  If Republicans steal the house, then the new speaker representing directionless Republicans becomes the ugly picture on the cover of the news magazines instead of Pelosi and Obama.

Better to gain back most of the ground and take it all with a clear agenda, a LEADER, and a mandate in 2012.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2010, 11:55:21 AM by DougMacG » Logged
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« Reply #308 on: January 08, 2010, 06:22:08 PM »

http://www.swamppolitics.com/news/politics/blog/2010/01/mccain_vs_obamas_leftwing_crus.html

Where was this guy in 2008?
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #309 on: January 15, 2010, 11:02:07 AM »

Digest · Friday, January 15, 2010

The Foundation
"I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." --Thomas Jefferson

Government & Politics
The Modern-Day Plantation
The new book "Game Change" by journalists John Heilemann and Mark Halperin has Washington buzzing. The book revealed some comments made by prominent Democrats that they probably wish had stayed in the smoke-filled room. The one receiving most attention is Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's remark that Barack Obama would succeed as a presidential candidate because he is "light-skinned" and speaks "with no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one."

Reactions on the Left were all too predictable: Reid groveled before Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, and Democrats circled the wagons. It almost goes without saying that, were a Republican to have said the same thing, he would have been run out of town on a rail. But Republicans didn't have to say anything before Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA), Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, thundered, "Senator Reid's record provides a stark contrast to actions of Republicans to block legislation that would benefit poor and minority communities -- most recently reflected in Republican opposition to the health bill now under consideration." Reid also last month called opponents of health care racists in the vein of those who resisted civil rights legislation in the 1960s (i.e., Democrats).

More interesting, though, is that conservatives disagree on how to handle the revelation. RNC Chairman Michael Steele, who is black, called for Reid to resign his leadership post because that's what Sen. Trent Lott did in a similar situation in 2002. Steele is an attack dog; it's his job to say this. But what would Republicans gain by collecting Reid's scalp? Probably not much. Given his dismal poll numbers, Wall Street Journal columnist John Fund doesn't believe Reid will even run for re-election, much less win it, so the GOP may pick up his seat anyway.

National Review's Jonah Goldberg took issue with Steele's premise as well, writing, "y demanding Reid's resignation, Steele is making an idiotic, nasty and entirely cynical game bipartisan. Yes, there's a double standard, but the point is that the standard used against conservatives is unfair, not that that unfair standard should be used against Democrats as well."

Thanks to Democrats, racism has been so broadly defined that practically anything Republicans do or say can be construed as such. As long as that doesn't change, the double standard will remain in effect.

Beyond the political chess match, however, the core of the matter is that Reid's observation isn't necessarily racist. He was partly correct, too. Besides the fact that no Republican was going to win the White House last year, Obama's race helped him.

As Martin Luther King Jr. once put it, "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character." Democrats still have that reversed: "I have a dream that my children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the content of their character but by the color of their skin." What's truly racist is that Democrats demand absolute allegiance and ideological purity from blacks, in effect keeping their prized constituency on the modern-day plantation.

News From the Swamp: Health Care Cost Shuffle
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is the latest organization to analyze the health care fiasco currently being cooked up behind closed doors in Washington, and its assessment is not good. According to the report, the legislation will force health care spending to rise by $222 billion over the next 10 years. Conveniently, revenue for the legislation is spread out over a 10-year budget period, but most of the spending provisions are in effect for only six years.

The report also attacks the idea that cuts in Medicare will help fund the health care bill, pointing out that doctors and hospitals will bear the brunt of these reductions. It's obvious to anyone willing to admit it that this will lead to a lower quality of service and doctors turning away patients insured by the government in favor of those with private coverage and "relatively attractive payment rates." This report, and several like it from numerous nonpartisan groups, have pointed out repeatedly that the health care bill in its current form will do exactly the opposite of what Democrats claim it will do, yet our "representatives" in Congress continue the proverbial march off of the cliff.

Open Query
"We're looking at 37 Democrats who are in districts that are particularly upset and vulnerable to the provisions of this health care bill. Are they going to be with the people or are they going to be with Pelosi?" --House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA), saying that "this health care bill can be defeated"


 

From the Left: Mass. Hysteria
While Massachusetts is one of the bluest states in the country, Republican Scott Brown has come within striking distance of beating Democrat Attorney General Martha Coakley in the special election to fill the state's empty U.S. Senate seat. The special election will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 19, and in recent days Brown has gone from also-ran to serious contender. His meteoric rise demonstrates that the public has serious issues with Democrats, and particularly the health care bill.

Brown made a strong showing in a debate against Coakley in which he fielded considerably tougher questions than she did. While Coakley was asked questions about her campaign style and strategy, Brown was grilled about global warming and health care legislation. He held his own and offered a nice zinger when moderator David Gergen asked him if he would be willing to "sit in Teddy Kennedy's seat" and vote against the health care bill. Brown responded, "Well, with all due respect, it's not the Kennedy seat, and it's not the Democrats' seat, it's the people's seat."

Absolutely true, but try telling that to Paul Kirk and the Massachusetts Democrat machine. Kirk was handpicked by Gov. Deval Patrick to hold the seat after Kennedy died, and he offers a crucial vote on health care should the vote come before the special election. Kirk has promised that he will vote for final passage, while Brown has indicated he will offer the 41st vote to prevent it. But now that it seems sure that the election will pass before the final vote, Kirk and the secretary of state's office, which oversees the special election, may be prepared to stall final certification of the results if Brown wins. They claim they will have to wait a minimum of 10 days for absentee and military ballots. This standard certainly wasn't in play when Kennedy himself was seated the day after the special election in 1962.

On Cross-Examination
"For some time now, leading Democrats have seemed to suffer from an ideological monomania vis-à-vis ObamaCare. No matter how unpopular the measure is, and thus how politically perilous for Democratic office-holders -- they are determined to push it through. But this reaches a new level of pathology. One can understand why they might want to play games with the certification of a Brown victory, but what in the world do they gain by saying so ahead of time? If Brown becomes the first Republican elected to the Senate from Massachusetts since 1972, it would be as clear a message of opposition to ObamaCare as one could hope to have.... For Democrats to announce pre-emptively that they will ignore such a message shows a stunning contempt for democracy." --Wall Street Journal columnist James Taranto

Judicial Benchmarks: Washington's Felon Vote
In its ongoing war against sanity, the Ninth Circus Court of Appeals has once again decided it knows better than the people and their elected representatives. Why wouldn't it? After all, there are upwards of 30 of our most politically connected former lawyers on the Circuit. Why shouldn't they know more about what to do about 100-year-old provisions of the Washington State constitution than the 6.5 million citizens of Washington?

The Court is offended that prison inmates in Washington are disproportionately minorities (this is a painful fact across America). Thus, two members of the Circuit concluded that the provision in the state's constitution denying felons the right to vote was racial discrimination, violating the federal Voting Rights Act. Now, we always thought that convicted felons became convicted felons because a jury found them guilty of committing a felony. We find it hard to believe that Washington juries are motivated to convict by the race of the accused. We also find it difficult to believe that the citizens of Washington would tolerate such a racist judicial system. However, we find it all too believable that two members of the most reversed court in America would rule this way. After all, judges know best. Soon, however, the case may head to the U.S. Supreme Court, where sanity is more likely to prevail.



Around the World: Freedom Declines
Since 1972, Freedom House has done the world a service by the annual publication of its Freedom in the World, which monitors trends in democracy and tracks improvements and setbacks in freedom worldwide. This year's just-released edition has bad news for freedom lovers. For the fourth consecutive year, global declines in freedom outweighed gains in 2009, representing the longest continuous period of decline for global freedom in the nearly 40-year history of the report.

The survey analyzes developments that occurred in 2009 and assigns each country a freedom status -- Free, Partly Free or Not Free -- based on a scoring on key indicators. Five countries moved into "Not Free" status, and the number of electoral democracies declined to the lowest level since 1995. However, 16 countries made notable gains, with two countries improving their overall freedom status. The most significant improvements in 2009 occurred in Asia.

Freedom House found "declines for freedom were registered in 40 countries in Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, and the former Soviet Union, representing 20 percent of the world's total polities. Authoritarian states including Iran, Russia, Venezuela, and Vietnam became more repressive. Freedom also declined in countries that had registered positive trends in previous years, including Bahrain, Jordan, Kenya, and Kyrgyzstan."

Commenting on the Freedom House report, The Wall Street Journal noted:

The recent reversals coincide, however, with America's own waning interest in democracy promotion. This didn't start with the Obama ascendancy. Chastened by the 2006 midterm election debacle and sinking public support for his Mideast policies, President Bush took rhetorical and practical emphasis off his own flagship foreign-policy agenda.

The current administration has changed the focus entirely. In its dealings with Russia and China, strategic issues trump any talk of democracy or human rights, which earlier this year in Beijing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton notably called a distraction to bilateral relations. Ditto in Iran.

Is this the change that we were promised during the presidential campaign? Has America changed from being "the shining city on the hill" to a country which disregards the inscription on the Liberty Bell to "Proclaim LIBERTY throughout all the Land unto all the Inhabitants thereof" and considers the promotion of democracy a "distraction to bilateral relations"?

National Security
Department of Military Correctness: SEAL Trial Moved to Iraq
The Courts Martial of Navy SEAL Petty Officers Matthew McCabe, Jonathan Keefe and Julio Huertas continues apace with two of the three heroes being forced to move their trial to Iraq in order to avail themselves of their constitutional right to confront their accuser in open court. This rare, if not unprecedented, move should be viewed with extreme caution and we hope defense counsel has taken appropriate measures to protect fully the rights of the accused.

For them to enter the sovereign territory of Iraq, even under the auspices of a military court, may place them in peril both physically and legally. What's to prevent the Iraqi government from bringing additional trumped up criminal charges and ordering their arrest? How will the U.S. military protect them from such arrest should such action take place?

One possible alternative would be to insist they hold the trial aboard a U.S. naval vessel in international waters off the Iraqi coast. Failing that, the U.S. Embassy is a second logical alternative.

In a related question, there is an interesting legal position we may be forced to confront in light of the criminal trial of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in New York City. If, as this administration insists, KSM (and others) are just "criminals," then under what legal authority has this administration justified the continued Predator attacks on these civilian "criminals"? We know this administration fully supports a double standard in tax cases and racism allegations, and we certainly don't expect anything different in this case.

This Week's 'Alpha Jackass' Award
"Most of the domestic groups that we pay attention to here are white supremacist groups. They're anti-government, in most cases anti-abortion, they are usually survivalist type in nature, identity oriented. ... Those groups are groups that claim to be extremely anti-government and Christian identity oriented." --TSA nominee Erroll Southers

Meanwhile, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the radical Muslim who actually tried to bomb a U.S. airliner, pleaded "not guilty" in federal court last Friday.

China's Successful Missile Interceptor Test
As China's economic might continues to grow, with its auto and banking industries overtaking the U.S. in world dominance, the Red Dragon's military might also is advancing ominously. This week, China's official Xinhua news agency reported that China tested "ground-based midcourse missile interception technology." Xinhua also said, "The test has achieved the expected objective. The test is defensive in nature and is not targeted at any country." The U.S. military confirmed the test did take place and apparently was successful. Pentagon spokeswoman Major Maureen Schumann said, "We detected two geographically separated missile launch events with an exo-atmospheric collision also being observed by space-based sensors."

China's successful anti-ballistic missile test comes just days after Beijing complained about U.S. weapon sales to Taiwan, including Patriot PAC-3 air defense missiles, which are themselves capable of intercepting short- and medium-range ballistic missiles and could be used against Red Chinese missiles deployed along China's coast and aimed at Taiwan. Both Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the Pentagon said they did not consider China's test to be related to these Taiwanese arms sales. While that may be technically true, since it typically takes many days or weeks to prepare such a missile test, there is little doubt that Beijing intended to send Washington a message -- that message being, "Taiwan is ours, stay away. And if you don't stay away, you will have to contend with our rapidly growing military technology." Just one more rattling saber that our waffling Dear Leader will have to deal with, or ignore at our country's peril.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #310 on: January 15, 2010, 11:03:06 AM »

Obama's Magical Mystery Jobs Tour

Barack Obama and congressional Democrats promised the $787 billion stimulus package would spur 3.5 million new jobs over two years. Nearly one year later, the tally is approaching four million -- jobs lost, that is. December's report revealed 85,000 jobs lost and unemployment at 10 percent (though real unemployment -- including those who have simply stopped looking for a job -- is over 17 percent). The president's solution? Why, another stimulus, of course.

Philosophizing that "the road to recovery is never straight," Obama claims that the $75 billion "Jobs for Main Street Act" currently before the Senate will continue the smashing success of the first stimulus. Success? Oh yes, to manipulate the numbers in its favor, the administration has designed its own job-tracking formula that gives new meaning to the term "fuzzy math." The administration has dropped the ridiculous jobs "saved or created" mantra, opting instead for the stat of jobs "funded" by the stimulus. Under this convenient formula, Obama claims to have created two million jobs to date. Miracles never cease.

If you haven't seen these jobs in your town, though, you're not alone. For example, according to an Associated Press analysis, reviewed by independent economists from five universities, $20 billion-plus in transportation spending from the first stimulus has yielded virtually zip in local job growth. Even Thomas Smith, a pro-stimulus Emory University economist who reviewed the analysis, stated, "As a policy tool for creating jobs, this doesn't seem to have much bite."

Despite the Norman Rockwellian title of the Jobs for Main Street Act, Main Street isn't buying it. GDP growth and stock market improvements notwithstanding, small businesses, which propel real economic growth, simply aren't hiring. In the New York Post, Charles Gasparino explains why: "Having weathered the recession, they now fear the administration will choke off the nascent recovery and increase their costs through higher taxes to pay for the myriad of programs President Obama has in store for us, including the hyperexpensive health-care overhaul."

This "damn-the-torpedoes, full-speed-ahead" approach is no mistake. Regardless of recovery rhetoric, the president's aim has been clear from the start: "I think when you spread the wealth around, it's good for everybody," he said during the campaign. Of course, the 15.3 million Americans who are unemployed might take issue with this.

Yet, as Christina Romer, Chairwoman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers, stated, the stimulus "has done exactly what we have anticipated it would do." She was referring to the supposed job growth. But substitute the president's "redistribute the wealth" intent, and Romer's statement is disturbingly true.


Administration Announces New Bank Tax
A regional convenience store has an interesting placard at the cash register informing patrons that the store pays more in debit and credit card transaction charges than it makes in net profits. The placard further invites the customer to sign a petition to tell Congress to limit transaction fees charged by the "evil banks."

Perhaps Barack Obama has been sneaking out of the White House after hours for a slushee because he also has decided that the evil banks are a potential revenue source for the Treasury. It seems that his Treasury Department has looked at the $46 billion earned by the Federal Reserve Bank in 2009 and concluded that the banking industry could support a donation to offset the cost of the TARP spend-a-thon. The terms of the Troubled Asset Relief Program do require the beneficiary to pay interest to the Treasury, but Obama's proposed fee would be an addition to those interest charges.

The Wall Street Journal reports, "If approved by Congress, the new tax -- which the White House calls a 'financial crisis responsibility fee' -- would force about 50 banks, insurance companies and large broker-dealers to collectively pay the federal government roughly $90 billion over 10 years." Furthermore, "Banks that have repaid their TARP money wouldn't escape taxation." GM and Chrysler are exempt, however.

As a socialist, Obama has as much tolerance for profits as Superman does for Kryptonite (our apologies to Superman for the comparison) ... unless those profits are derived from a fictional autobiographical memoir of a 40-year-old man whose accomplishments couldn't fill a 3x5 index card. However, just in case he reads our humble publication, we would like to remind Mr. Obama that profits represent the return for risk. Profits beget retained earnings, beget capital formation, beget expansion -- the one sustainable source of job growth.

Don't get us wrong -- the federal government (read: taxpayers) never should have bailed out banks in the first place. But many of them have already paid back TARP money, or are working to pay it back (some never wanted it in the first place but were forced to take it), and another tax is not exactly the right remedy for a struggling economy. That $90 billion could cost the economy $1 trillion when the lost capital results in less lending. Alas, everything looks like a nail to someone with a hammer.




From the 'Non Compos Mentis' File
Our thoughts and prayers are with those in Haiti after the terrible and deadly earthquake there this week. The disaster, though, provided fodder for, of all things, the health care debate. MSNBC's Keith Olbermann asked how U.S. health care would withstand such a disaster: "[H]ow would survivors of something like this here fare in terms of getting on their own feet economically afterwards, with the health care system we have in place right now?"

In our estimation, we think our system would fare just fine. We're certainly the first to come to the aid of a nation such as Haiti, sending our own doctors and supplies, not to mention our military. Does Olbermann really think that once health care is rationed and doctors themselves are in short supply, America will be able to help itself, much less other nations? American generosity is possible because of our (mostly) capitalist system -- the system that Olbermann and other leftists want to replace with the graveyard of socialism.

Meanwhile, Pat Robertson, founder of the Christian Broadcasting Network, also made regrettable remarks about Haiti's tragedy. On his show "The 700 Club," Robertson claimed that during the 18th century when Haitian slaves sought freedom from the French they made a "pact to the devil." He concluded, "Ever since, they have been cursed by one thing after the other." Thus the earthquake. Robertson made similar comments after Hurricane Katrina. We would remind Pat that most Haitians are Catholic.

Actor Danny Glover had his own theory as to the cause of the earthquake: "All this hell because of global warming. ... When we did what we did at the climate summit in Copenhagen, this is the response, this is what happens, you know what I'm sayin'?" What Glover is sayin' is that because there wasn't an agreement at Copenhagen, climate change is causing earthquakes. Robertson says the Haitians offended God, Glover claims they angered Gaia.

Barack Obama has their back, though. Speaking to the Haitians, he said, "[A]fter suffering so much for so long, to face this new horror must cause some to look up and ask, 'Have we somehow been forsaken?' To the people of Haiti, we say clearly, and with conviction, you will not be forsaken; you will not be forgotten. In this, your hour of greatest need, America stands with you." In other words, the Chosen One hasn't forgotten them.

Faith and Family: Bicoastal Fronts on the Same-Sex Marriage War
From sea to shining sea, Americans are being divided on the moral issue of whether two people of the same gender should have the right to declare themselves married. Californians thought they had settled the question (for the second time) when the ballot issue and constitutional amendment Proposition 8 narrowly passed in 2008. But their verdict was soon called into question and eventually landed in the courtroom of Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn R. Walker, with a trial to overturn the will of the voters starting this week.

In addition, Judge Walker has promised to turn this trial into a three-ring circus by posting delayed video of the proceedings on YouTube, citing a recently approved federal pilot program which allowed telecasting certain non-jury civil trials. Supporters of Proposition 8 objected to this, citing that ongoing harassment by opponents would have a chilling effect on the willingness of witnesses defending Proposition 8 to be filmed. The filming question went before the United States Supreme Court, which has blocked filming the trial indefinitely.

Across the country, the New Jersey Senate denied the bid of activists to make the Garden State the fifth to allow same-sex marriage. While the state has allowed civil unions since 2006, the same-sex marriage bill was voted on hurriedly so outgoing Gov. Jon Corzine could sign it since incoming GOP Governor-elect Chris Christie opposes the bill.

The bill was rejected by a 20-14 vote, falling seven votes short of passage in the 40-member body and never making it to the Assembly. Same-sex marriage supporters vow to make their next move in court.
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ccp
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« Reply #311 on: January 18, 2010, 07:11:43 PM »

It is hard not to agree that should Brown win tomorrow it would be in my opinion the most stunning political upset in memory.
It is also encouraging in that it shows me at least it is not too late to stop the liberal agenda before it is too late.

Morris does seem to suggest Reconciliation is to be used for "budget reasons" and appears to be more of a bluff then anything else.

   
« URGENT APPEAL RE: MASSACHUSETTS AND OTHER STATESMASSACHUSETTS IS THE GAME CHANGER
By Dick Morris And Eileen McGann 01.18.2010 Beyond a pleasing sight for the heart, what would Ted Kennedy’s seat going Republican really mean?

A lot.

First, there would be the psychological effect. On Democratic donors — it would discourage them from opening their checkbooks. On Republican donors — the impact would be electric in kindling their interest and generosity. On Democratic incumbents seeking re-election — it would make the beaches and golf courses that await them in their Florida retirement homes (and the lucrative lobbying jobs in Washington) infinitely more attractive. On Republicans considering running for the House and the Senate — it will help them see the truth: That their time is at hand! (It might even help our esteemed Party Chairman Michael Steele, realize that we can capture both houses this year!)


But in the Senate itself, it would really signal the end of Obama’s legislative dominance. He’ll probably be able to pass health care either by Democratic dithering in certifying Brown’s election or by ramming through the bill while he’s en route to Washington on the shuttle.

But, beyond that, the prospects of getting 60 votes on the remaining items in Obama’s legislative agenda: cap and trade, union card check, and immigration reform would slip away with the Massachusetts result.

He cannot govern through reconciliation (passing bills with 51 votes by pretending they are just budget bills). If it were that easy, why would Harry Reid have worked so hard - and so successfully - to bribe Senators Landrieu (D-La), Lincoln (D-Ark) and Nelson (D-Neb)? Why would he have caved in to the demands of Connecticut’s Joseph Lieberman and discarded the public option much to the chagrin of his House colleagues?

A victory for Scott Brown would represent the Gettysburg of the Obama Administration - its high water mark, its tipping point.

But even more corrosive for Obama and the Democrats is the knowledge that nobody is safe from Republican assault. If the GOP can win a Senate seat in the People’s Republic of Massachusetts, it can win anywhere, anytime, against anyone. Long term Democratic incumbents from largely Republican districts would have to rethink their loyalty to Reid and Pelosi. Particularly in the House, it will be ever more difficult to round up majorities for Administration bills. Politicians will start running for cover and hiding in the cloakrooms.

Democrats will try to spin their defeat by blaming their candidate, Martha Coakley, for not campaigning hard enough. They will say that they lost because their base did not turn out and that the solution is to pass ever more radical legislation in the hopes of rekindling their fervor. But losing Massachusetts, on top of Virginia and New Jersey, will convince even the most loyal Democrat that the handwriting is, indeed, on the wall.

For all of these reasons, please make an effort today to telephone or e-mail any friends, family or colleagues you know in Massachusetts to urge them to come out and vote for Scott Brown. There is so very much at stake!





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ccp
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« Reply #312 on: January 19, 2010, 09:42:10 AM »

You can't be serious.  Does anyone think this would happen if these were potential Republican voters?  Now we are establishing a trend.  What about the next time there is an earthquake in Mexico City?  Does anyone in Florida have a say in this?  No coincidence it is a state that Dems need to get to blue.  I feel terrible looking at the cable dramas but this is my opinion is nuts but not surprising.  Never let a catastrophy go to waste -

***ORLANDO, Fla. -- The American Red Cross says a plan to bring 45,000 evacuees from Haiti to Florida, and 4,000 of those to Orange County, is not set in stone. The Red Cross clarified Friday who could be involved in a plan to move people out of Haiti.

The Red Cross is preparing for two things: the repatriation of Americans living in Haiti and the possibility of a mass migration of Haitian nationals.
The American Red Cross has seen massive migration into the U.S. from areas like Kosovo and Bosnia in the past, but no determination has been made yet in the case of Haiti. But the repatriation of Americans has already begun. Eyewitness News was told that it includes people like missionaries who may have already been working in Haiti before the quake.

The U.S. citizens are being brought into South Florida through Miami and Homestead, where their identities can be verified. Thursday night, five flights arrived with 190 Americans on board.

“I think that we will continue see U.S. citizens coming in over the weekend and through the beginning of next week. And that would be our first focus and first wave and, I think, as the conditions are assessed in Haiti and some decisions are made both with our federal government and the Haitian government about what’s best for their citizens,” Director of Emergency Services Becky Sebren said.

Americans continued to arrive in South Florida Friday afternoon and, as the United States plans its strategy to help Haiti, the state closest to the island nation is taking center stage with a plan to bring tens of thousands of refugees to Florida and approximately 4,000 to Orlando.

Orange County Mayor Rich Crotty says he has some concerns with the possible plan. If Haitians are brought to Central Florida, the county, city and possibly other area communities will have to scramble to figure out where to put the earthquake victims, and it will be a tough challenge.

"It would occur to me that there is a legal process associated with that and it would probably have to come through the State Department in terms of citizenship and visas, work visas [and] that sort of thing," Mayor Crotty said.

What that influx of people brings with it is a very large service demand, particularly in the area of social services in what is already a tough economy.

"We're very stressed financially right now and this is going to add to that stress," Mayor Crotty said. "So this is a balance we're going to have to work on strengthening."

Governor Charlie Crist told Eyewitness News Friday that, while he's talked to the Secretary of Homeland Security about bringing Haitians to Florida, nothing has been decided at this point.

Governor Crist was at a jobs summit in Orlando Friday morning. Crist wouldn't confirm whether Haitian refugees would be coming to Central Florida; he did say that Florida has pledged to do everything it can to help those in need after the earthquake.

"We want to be in touch with the State Department, making sure we're doing what is necessary for these people to get the help they need and deserve," Crist said.

Governor Crist said, because of mild hurricane seasons for the past several years, there are a lot of relief supplies available in Florida. He said some of those supplies will be used to help Haitians in need.

Additionally, the State of Florida has opened a new emergency information hotline about the Haiti quake. It's meant to give Floridians a link to informational resources on the international response and recovery efforts.***
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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #313 on: January 19, 2010, 08:42:10 PM »

Several sources have called it and there are reports Coakley has conceded. Gonna be fun watching the fallout.
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G M
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« Reply #314 on: January 19, 2010, 10:25:05 PM »

 cheesy It's nice to wake up to this news! grin

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Body-by-Guinness
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« Reply #315 on: January 20, 2010, 12:07:26 AM »

Jon Stewarts take on the special election:

http://www.thefoxnation.com/entertainment/2010/01/19/jon-stewart-melts-down-over-mass-race
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G M
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« Reply #316 on: January 20, 2010, 09:25:39 AM »

http://hotair.com/archives/2010/01/20/the-world-turned-upside-down/

The emperor is an empty suit!
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ccp
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« Reply #317 on: January 20, 2010, 10:16:10 AM »

I still don't know why three quarters still like a man as dishonest about who he is, his real agenda, and his counter revolution.
It is amazing to watch the Dems circle the wagons around him.  No matter what the election in Mass, Virginia and NJ is about everything BUT the chosen one.  That 48 % still approve of his job is still too high for a man who is set on a course and lifes journey and making our country into a socialist or facsist state.  People still don't get it, or they agree with it, or they don't care as long as they get more and more government benefits.

I don't think his state of the union speech will have any surprises but be full of endless spin.  He will continue to paint himself as one of "us" though he is clearly a career long counter revolutionary as Levin/Beck point out. 

****Three-quarters said they liked Mr. Obama, who put his political capital on the line by campaigning for fellow Democrat Martha Coakley in Massachusetts. But just 22% said they were "optimistic and confident" about his presidency—a 10-point decline from a year ago. By comparison, 27% were "pessimistic and worried" about his presidency, compared with just 9% a year ago, when many hoped he would lead the nation into an economic recovery.

Overall, 48% said they approved of the job Mr. Obama is doing, while 43% disapproved—about the same as last month but down sharply from approval ratings in the 60% range in his early months in office.****

I could be wrong but I am less clear that there is evolving any mandate for strict conservativism as Hannity et al would like us to believe. Not that I am necessarily against it but just that I don't think that is a long term winning formula.

What exactly does the tea party stand for?  There is something I think about this that is where the future may lie.

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ccp
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« Reply #318 on: January 20, 2010, 10:28:12 AM »

From Huffington.  The left spin.  It is not that Bama is too radical left or a counter revolutionary like the "fringe right" put forth, it is simply he has been willing to compromise too much, he is not left enough, he is not shoving his agenda through enough.  So goes the spin and self delusion of the left - the core crats.

You gotta love this one:
"Yet Obama has undoubtedly created a different climate in Washington -- one based on reasonable discussion and debate". (as long as you support his radical counter revolution)

One can only hope the Bama will not turn into Bill Clinton and will continue to deceive the voters like he has been doing while behind the scenes doing his real life's dream.  Only then IMHO will we eventually see his popularity go to Jimmy Carter levels where it belongs.
 
***Obama's First Year: High Hopes, Harsh Reality
      Tue Jan 19, 10:12 pm ET
President Barack Obama's victory walk down Pennsylvania Avenue after his swearing-in last January was probably the last time he's been able to breathe easy and just enjoy himself.

Since then, the 44th president of the United States has been on a roller coaster ride even more turbulent than the usual collision with reality experienced by his predecessors in their first years. Though Obama remains popular with a majority of Americans, he's been battered by obstructionist Republicans, vilified by Tea Party activists and condemned by disappointed progressives. And his biggest legislative agenda -- health care reform -- has been stripped of its essential elements on its way through Congress.

Obama's fate will largely be determined by the state of the economy, with rising unemployment and the bailout of the country's biggest banks fueling bipartisan outrage. By continuing Bush's unpopular TARP program to give trillions to financial institutions that helped cause the financial crisis and surrounding himself with economic advisers allied with Wall Street, the president has angered both conservatives and liberals. And since his stimulus and mortgage modification programs have failed to stem, respectively, the unemployment and foreclosure rates, a growing number of Americans feel that Obama's policies favor Wall Street over Main Street. The president's push for financial regulatory reform, including the creation of a consumer finance protection agency, is in danger of being substantially weakened in Congress.

The other major issue that looms over the administration -- and it's also one inherited from the previous administration -- is the increasingly unpopular war in Afghanistan and the president's decision to increase the amount of U.S. troops in that lethal conflict. As American and Afghan casualties mount, more voices in both parties are raising concerns about the necessity of the war and express the fear that the U.S. will be doomed to fighting in Afghanistan for many years to come.

In addition, in the wake of the national security system's failure to prevent the botched Christmas Day airline bombing by a Yemeni-trained jihadist, national security concerns are taking on a bigger role in the fate of the administration. Though Obama has succeeded in changing the tone on national security and outlining a new multilateral approach to foreign affairs, his administration's decision to continue many Bush-era policies -- from warrantless surveillance to refusing to release information on past detainee policies -- has raised eyebrows among those who voted for him. This Friday marks the date by which Obama promised last January to close Guantanamo, but the facility remains nowhere near being shut down.

Yet Obama has undoubtedly created a different climate in Washington -- one based on reasonable discussion and debate -- and expressed a desire to work with the international community, as he has eloquently articulated in his speeches abroad. On national security, the president has largely made decisions through thoughtful consideration of the different perspectives rather than the stubbornly instinctive decisions of his predecessor. On the environment, his administration represents a radical change from the Bush era and has resurrected important regulations that were dismantled by the previous president. Despite criticism that health care reform has been watered down by industry interests and political deal-making, the very fact that the issue is being taken seriously in the Oval Office after years of inertia and is on the cusp of insuring millions of low-income Americans is, in itself, a victory.

Will Obama fulfill the promise of his presidency, learn from his rookie mistakes and have the courage to make the tough decisions needed to move the country forward? Or will he favor compromise over leadership, squander his popularity and cave to the powerful interests gathered against him? It's all up to him -- and to Americans to push him to make the right decisions.

Related blogs: Jody Johnson: Obama One Year Later: Remembering the Images of History in the Making, Saul Friedman: Gray Matters: Grading Obama

Read More: Obama Administration, Obama Afghanistan, Obama Financial Crisis, Obama First Year, Obama Guantanamo, Obama Inauguration, Obama White House, President Obama

 

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prentice crawford
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« Reply #319 on: January 22, 2010, 01:59:43 AM »

Woof,
 A Republican has won the Senate seat once held by Ted Kennedy, in Massachusetts. In a related story Hell froze over! cheesy
                                P.C.
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prentice crawford
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« Reply #320 on: January 22, 2010, 09:23:53 PM »

 www.conservapedia.com/Nancy_Pelosi
 www.conservapedia.com/Harry_Reid
 www.conservapedia.com/Barney_Frank
 www.conservapedia.com/Charles_Rangel
 www.conservapedia.com/Chris_Dodd

 I find it hard to believe that people keep voting these corrupt officials into office time after time. A Liberal ham sandwich could serve its constituents better.
                         P.C.
« Last Edit: January 22, 2010, 10:05:18 PM by prentice crawford » Logged

G M
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« Reply #321 on: January 23, 2010, 05:26:39 PM »

http://hotair.com/archives/2010/01/23/ellie-light-obama-astroturfer/

Who is Ellie Light?
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prentice crawford
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« Reply #322 on: January 23, 2010, 10:31:30 PM »

Woof GM,
 This might answer that: www.fitsnews.com/2010.01/23/ellie-light-barack-obamas-biggest-fan/
                    P.C.
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G M
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« Reply #323 on: January 26, 2010, 10:50:59 PM »

http://hotair.com/archives/2010/01/26/good-news-ellie-light-comes-clean-admits-shes-a-guy/comment-page-1/#comments

She's a Mannnnn, Baby!
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #324 on: February 26, 2010, 07:33:48 AM »

The Foundation
"Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm." --James Madison

Editorial Exegesis

The health care summit is an "evil" trap"A mere three days before President Obama's supposedly bipartisan health-care summit, the White House [Monday] released a new blueprint that Democrats say they will ram through Congress with or without Republican support. So after election defeats in Virginia, New Jersey and even Massachusetts, and amid overwhelming public opposition, Democrats have decided to give the voters what they don't want anyway. Ah, the glory of 'progressive' governance and democratic consent. 'The President's Proposal,' as the 11-page White House document is headlined, is in one sense a notable achievement: It manages to take the worst of both the House and Senate bills and combine them into something more destructive. It includes more taxes, more subsidies and even less cost control than the Senate bill. And it purports to fix the special-interest favors in the Senate bill not by eliminating them -- but by expanding them to everyone. ... The larger political message of this new proposal is that Mr. Obama and Democrats have no intention of compromising on an incremental reform, or of listening to Republican, or any other, ideas on health care. They want what they want, and they're going to play by Chicago Rules and try to dragoon it into law on a narrow partisan vote via Congressional rules that have never been used for such a major change in national policy. If you want to know why Democratic Washington is 'ungovernable,' this is it." --The Wall Street Journal

Insight
"The state tends to expand in proportion to its means of existence and to live beyond its means, and these are, in the last analysis, nothing but the substance of the people. Woe to the people that cannot limit the sphere of action of the state! Freedom, private enterprise, wealth, happiness, independence, personal dignity, all vanish." --French economist Frederic Bastiat (1801-1850)

"People unfit for freedom -- who cannot do much with it -- are hungry for power. The desire for freedom is an attribute of a 'have' type of self. It says: leave me alone and I shall grow, learn, and realize my capacities. The desire for power is basically an attribute of a 'have not' type of self." --writer and philosopher Eric Hoffer (1902-1983)

"The world is weary of statesmen whom democracy has degraded into politicians." --British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881)

Upright
"Offering 'comprehensive' reform usually means years of arguing and horse-trading among pressure groups to get anything done. By the time all the special interests are appeased or bought off, the resulting elephantine legislation typically looks nothing like what was intended. In short, big-government medicine usually doesn't work on big-government sickness. If President Obama wants 'comprehensive' change, it would be better simply not to spend any more money we don't have." --historian Victor Davis Hanson

"[Barack Obama failed to sell a health care reform plan to American voters] because the utter implausibility of its central promise -- expanded coverage at lower cost -- led voters to conclude that it would lead ultimately to more government, more taxes and more debt." --columnist Charles Krauthammer

"Don't ever let anyone tell you that history doesn't repeat. For 70 years, liberals have been spinning the yarn that FDR's New Deal, despite all the evidence that it exacerbated and prolonged the Great Depression, quickened our economic recovery. Indeed, I remember scratching my head when one of my college history professors in the 1970s tried to convince us of that theory and its corollary -- an even better howler -- that FDR was actually a conservative, because if he hadn't implemented his socialist programs, the republic would have died right there." --columnist David Limbaugh

"This is a perfect snapshot of the West at twilight. On the one hand, governments of developed nations microregulate every aspect of your life in the interests of 'keeping you safe.' ... On the other hand, when it comes to 'keeping you safe' from real threats, such as a millenarian theocracy that claims universal jurisdiction, America and its allies do nothing. ... It is now certain that Tehran will get its nukes, and very soon. This is the biggest abdication of responsibility by the Western powers since the 1930s." --columnist Mark Steyn

"In the early aftermath of the suicidal pilot's attack [in Austin], there was no evidence that Stack belonged to a Tea Party organization. In any case, no law-abiding Tea Party group would ever condone what he did. But it didn't stop the haters from immediately smearing advocates of limited government. And it's just the latest in a long line of calculated attempts to paint the vast majority of peaceful Tea Party activists as terrorist threats to civil society. ... The smear merchants, of course, are simply following Rahm Emanuel's advice to exploit every crisis." --columnist Michelle Malkin

"Why should we capitalists go green? To do so is simply to exchange our technological, industrial, and energy superiority for a lie. ... Capitalism is about progressing via the ingenuity and excellence of minds unfettered by government regulations and interference. But environmentalism based on the man-made global warming theory is about regressing from the advances that unfettered minds have made. It's also about pushing the government to regulate and interfere at every step along the way." --columnist AWR Hawkins


The Demo-gogues
The definition of chutzpah: "After a decade of profligacy, the American people are tired of politicians who talk the talk but don't walk the walk when it comes to fiscal responsibility. It's easy to get up in front of the cameras and rant against exploding deficits. What's hard is actually getting deficits under control. But that's what we must do. Like families across the country, we have to take responsibility for every dollar we spend." --Barack Obama

Taxes are going up: "Everything's on the table. That's how this thing is going to work." --Barack Obama after creating a deficit commission on whether he would raise taxes on families earning less than $250,000 a year

Shut up, he explained: "They should stop crying about reconciliation as if it's never been done before." --Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) (It's never been done on a bill of this magnitude before.)

"So I do believe that there is more fertile soil today than when we first took this up." --House Democrat Whip James Clyburn, of South Carolina, weighing in not on all those "shovel ready" supposed job-starting projects of the "stimulus" but on the Demo plan for the government takeover of U.S. medical care.

You don't say: "Health care has been knocking me around pretty good." --Barack Obama, who still hasn't learned his lesson

Speaking of being knocked around: "Men, when they're out of work, tend to become abusive." --Harry Reid ("Many observers have speculated that Reid is likely to lose his job at the end of the current term. ... Is something going to happen to Mrs. Reid if Nevadans don't re-elect this senator?")

Non sequitur: "We have countries like China, which don't have to go through the democratic processes that we do, that order factories to move to deal with their air pollution." --Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM), urging his fellow senators to pass cap-n-tax
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #325 on: March 01, 2010, 11:15:33 AM »

The Foundation
"There is a certain enthusiasm in liberty, that makes human nature rise above itself, in acts of bravery and heroism." --Alexander Hamilton

Opinion in Brief
"Americans cherish their independence. One interesting aspect of the spontaneous tea party movement is the constant invocation of the Founders and the prominence of the 'Don't Tread on Me' flag. ... Americans tend to see themselves as independent doers, not dependent victims. They don't like to be told, especially by those with fancy academic pedigrees, that they are helpless and in need of government aid. That's why the politically popular American big government programs -- Social Security, Medicare, veterans' benefits, student loans -- all make a connection between effort and reward. You get a benefit because you've worked for it. In contrast, Americans have loathed and rejected big government programs with no nexus between effort and reward. Welfare was begun in the 1930s to help widows with children, whose plight, as Russell Baker's memoir 'Growing Up' showed, was often dismal. But when welfare became a mass program to subsidize mothers who didn't work and to excuse fathers from responsibility for their actions, it became wildly unpopular. Bill Clinton recognized this when he signed welfare reform in 1996. ... Barack Obama, who has chosen to live his adult life in university precincts, sees ... Americans generally as victims who need his help, people who would be better off dependent on government than on their own. Most American voters don't want to see themselves that way and resent this condescension." --political analyst Michael Barone

Political Futures
"When Republicans regain a majority in the House and Senate -- either this fall, as seems increasingly likely, or in the election following -- they must learn from their previous mistakes when they last held power. In addition to focusing on overturning whatever health insurance 'reform' proposal this Congress eventually passes (by a veto override, or a lawsuit challenging the measure's constitutionality), a Republican congressional majority must help large numbers of the public unlearn the factual errors they have been taught to accept. From 'climate change,' to the notion that government is a guarantor through 'entitlement' programs of a minimal outcome in life, to the forgotten idea given to us by the Founders that Liberty is the most precious gift there is, the country needs a history lesson based on truth, experience and provable facts. ... A Republican majority should turn the nation's attention away from Washington. A Republican majority must teach us again that 'you can do it,' like so many of our fathers did when the training wheels came off and we learned we could fly down the sidewalk without assistance. America doesn't need restructuring. It needs revival; revival of the principles that made us strong and great; revival of the moral foundation that proved to be our real strength and allowed us to conquer our demons and become independent, not dependent on government. This is the message most Americans want to hear and need to hear. Will the Republicans deliver it?" --columnist Cal Thomas

The Gipper
"Perhaps you and I have lived with this miracle too long to be properly appreciative. Freedom is a fragile thing and is never more than one generation away from extinction. It is not ours by inheritance; it must be fought for and defended constantly by each generation, for it comes only once to a people. Those who have known freedom and then lost it have never known it again. Knowing this, it is hard to explain those who even today would question the people's capacity for self-rule. Will they answer this: if no one among us is capable of governing himself, then who among us has the capacity to govern someone else?" --Ronald Reagan


Re: The Left
"The reason massive Democratic majorities in Congress aren't enough to pass socialist health care is AMERICANS DON'T WANT SOCIALIZED MEDICINE! In fact, you might say that the nation is in a boiling cauldron of rage against it. Consequently, a lot of Democrats are suddenly having second thoughts about vast new government commissions regulating every aspect of Americans' medical care. Obama isn't stupid -- he's not seriously trying to get a health care bill passed. The whole purpose of this public 'summit' with the minority party is to muddy up the Republicans before the November elections. You know, the elections Democrats are going to lose because of this whole health care thing. Right now, Americans are hopping mad, swinging a stick and hoping to hit anyone who so much as thinks about nationalizing health care. If they could, Americans would cut the power to the Capitol, throw everyone out and try to deport them. ... But the Democrats think it's a good strategy to call the Republicans 'The Party of No.' When it comes to Obamacare, Americans don't want a party of 'No,' they want a party of 'Hell, No!' or, as Rahm Emanuel might say, '*&^%$#@ No!' ... Complaining that Republicans are 'obstructionists' is not a damaging charge when most Americans are dying to obstruct the Democrats with a 2-by-4. While you're at it, Democrats, why not call the GOP the 'Party of Brave Patriots'?" --columnist Ann Coulter

Government
"Filibusters are devices for registering intensity rather than mere numbers. Besides, has a filibuster ever prevented eventual enactment of anything significant that an American majority has desired, strongly and protractedly? Liberals say filibusters confuse and frustrate the public. But most ideas incubated in the political cauldron of grasping factions are deplorable. Therefore, serving the public involves -- mostly involves -- saying 'No.' The Bill of Rights effectively pronounces the lovely word 'no' regarding many possible government undertakings -- establishment of religion, unreasonable searches and seizures, etc. The fiction that government is 'paralyzed' by partisanship is regularly refuted. ... Liberals are deeply disappointed with the public, which fails to fathom the excellence of their agenda. But their real complaint is with the government's structure. And with the nature of the politics this structure presupposes in a continental nation wary of government and replete with rival factions." --columnist George Will

For the Record
"For those not versed in the arcane rules of the U.S. Senate, reconciliation is not what a divorced couple attempts when they visit Dr. Phil. It is a mechanism for avoiding filibusters on certain budgetary issues. If Democrats can find a way to apply it to health care reform, they could pass a bill with just 51 votes, negating the election of Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown and the loss of the 60-seat supermajority. Reconciliation was established in 1974 to make it easier for Congress to adjust taxes and spending in order to 'reconcile' actual revenues and expenditures with a previously approved budget resolution. Thus, at the end of the year, if Congress found that it was running a budget deficit higher than previously projected, it could quickly raise taxes or cut spending to bring the budget back into line. Debate on such measures was abbreviated to just 20 hours (an eyeblink in Senate terms), and there could be no filibuster. As Robert Byrd, (D-W.V.), one of the original authors of the reconciliation rule, explained, 'Reconciliation was intended to adjust revenue and spending levels in order to reduce deficits ... t was not designed to ... restructure the entire health care system.' He warns that using reconciliation for health care would 'violate the intent and spirit of the budget process, and do serious injury to the Constitutional role of the Senate.' In fact, in 1985, the Senate adopted the 'Byrd rule,' which prohibits the use of reconciliation for any 'extraneous issue' that does not directly change revenues or expenditures. Clearly, large portions of the health care bill, ranging from mandates to insurance regulation to establishing 'exchanges,' do not meet that requirement." --Cato Institute senior fellow Michael D. Tanner


Faith & Family
"One of the major differences between the right and the left concerns the question of authority: To whom do we owe obedience and who is the ultimate moral authority? For the right, the primary moral authority is God (or, for secular conservatives, Judeo-Christian values), followed by parents. Of course, government must also play a role, but it is ultimately accountable to God and it should do nothing to undermine parental authority. For the left, the state and its government are the supreme authorities, while parental and divine authority are seen as impediments to state authority. ... In a nutshell, the left wants to have ever-expanding authority over people's lives through ever-expanding governmental powers. It does so because it regards itself as more enlightened than others. Others are either enemies (the right) or unenlightened masses. It is elected by demonizing its enemies and doling out money and jobs to the masses." --radio talk-show host Dennis Prager

Culture
"Personal responsibility is a real problem for those who want to collectivize society and take away our power to make our own decisions, transferring that power to third parties like themselves, who imagine themselves to be so much wiser and nobler than the rest of us. Aimless apologies are just one of the incidental symptoms of an increasing loss of a sense of personal responsibility -- without which a whole society is in jeopardy. The police cannot possibly maintain law and order by themselves. Millions of people can monitor their own behavior better than any third parties can. Cops can cope with that segment of society who have no sense of personal responsibility, but not if that segment becomes a large part of the whole population. Yet increasing numbers of educators and the intelligentsia seem to have devoted themselves to undermining or destroying a sense of personal responsibility and making 'society' responsible instead." --economist Thomas Sowell
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #326 on: March 03, 2010, 08:18:58 AM »

PC or anyone:

What can you tell us about Rand Paul and his candidacy in KY?
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prentice crawford
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« Reply #327 on: March 03, 2010, 03:08:50 PM »

Woof Guro Craftydog,
 Here you go:  www.randpaul2010.com   /   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rand_Paul   /   www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/02/03/AR2010020303643.html

                                  P.C.
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ccp
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« Reply #328 on: March 04, 2010, 03:01:18 PM »

Interesting take by DM.  Gerrymandering was for incubent, not party advantage in 2000.

By Dick Morris 03.3.2010 Published on TheHill.com on March 2, 2010

In U.S. politics, all elections are not created equal. It’s OK to lose the state legislative and gubernatorial elections held on years ending in 2, 4, 6 or 8. But you can’t afford to lose those held in years that end in 0. Those are the reapportionment elections.


With the governorships evenly divided and almost all of the state legislatures, the party that loses the decadal election stands to lose control over congressional reapportionment. And, therefore, to lose control of the House of Representatives for a decade.

When Obama persists with his unpopular healthcare proposals, he is dooming his party not just to defeat in 2010, but to losses throughout the coming decade.

The reapportionment of 2000 was a kinder, gentler reapportionment. Except in Texas, where former Rep. Tom DeLay (R) took no prisoners, the two parties concluded sweetheart deals to draw lines that favored the incumbents on both sides of the aisle. In California, for example, the lines so protected Democratic and Republican opponents that there is only one vulnerable Democrat (Jerry McNerney) out of 54 congressmen from that state.

In Iowa and Arizona, reapportionment was handled, as it should be everywhere, by a nonpartisan commission that is prohibited from considering party preferences or incumbency in drawing the lines. But in the other 48, don’t count on the kinder and gentler reapportionment rules of 2000 to apply.

The partisan divide, fostered by Obama’s ruthless use of his majorities, has become so wide and embittered that Republican legislative leaders and governors will press every advantage they can to gain ascendancy. And they should!

Tip O’Neill said that all politics is local. Not anymore. In 2010, all politics is national. The merits or demerits of each individual candidate count for little. Party counts for all.

Voters have come to understand and debunk the Myth of the Moderate Democrat. The fiscal-conservative-sounding, pro-life Democrat who campaigns for office promising to balance the budget, hold down taxes and fight for our values is the same one who marches right into the halls of the House on the first day of the session and votes for Nancy Pelosi for Speaker, Charlie Rangel for chairman of Ways and Means and Henry Waxman for Energy and Commerce. It is that one vote that permits Obama’s radical agenda to pass.

Voters realize that it does not matter if their local moderate Democrat breaks ranks on this bill or that one. That first vote to let the Democrats organize the House is the crucial one. From then on, Pelosi doesn’t really need him and will let him vote no to assuage his district and get reelected.

Presidents only lose when they get stuck in scandal or in their own misguided convictions. So it was with Johnson and Vietnam, Nixon and Watergate, Ford and the pardon, Reagan and Iran-Contra, Bush and the recession, Clinton and Lewinsky and Bush-43 and Iraq. Now Obama is repeating the lamentable history of his predecessors by getting stuck in the mire of his own ideology over healthcare.

So in the elections of 2010, Republicans, independents and even some Democrats (Obama’s rating is now down to 43 percent in Rasmussen) will vote a straight Republican ticket. Gone is the chic notion that party doesn’t matter and one should vote for the individual. Obama has ended those days. Now Democrats can expect the same kind of swath of destruction that will obliterate their congressional and Senate majorities to destroy their hold on statehouses and legislatures. And on the 2011 reapportionment.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #329 on: March 04, 2010, 04:58:52 PM »

Back in the 1980s, when the editorial page of the WSJ was a serious place (quite unlike now in the Murdoch era) one of the powerful themes powerfully pursued was the fact that the incumbent re-election rate of the House was 98%  shocked shocked shocked

We see this here in CA quite vividly.  Back when Gov. S______r had testicles, he tried an initiative for honest apportionment of districts, which for reasons beyond my ken, failed utterly.
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Freki
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« Reply #330 on: March 19, 2010, 08:09:34 AM »

This lays out the historic arguments against states rights used to get us to this sorry health care bill.  It is well worth the read.  We must move back to the founding principles or the Republic is lost!  P.S. Down here in Texas I see Secede bumper stickers everywhere.  If the fed over steps its powers, the States must act with nullification, and or intervention, and God help us.
Freki

Doomed From the Start?


by Thomas J. DiLorenzo, LewRockwell.com

After spending a lifetime in politics John C. Calhoun (U.S. Senator, Vice President of the United States, Secretary of War) wrote his brilliant treatise, A Disquisition on Government, which was published posthumously shortly after his death in 1850. In it Calhoun warned that it is an error to believe that a written constitution alone is “sufficient, of itself, without the aid of any organism except such as is necessary to separate its several departments, and render them independent of each other to counteract the tendency of the numerical majority to oppression and abuse of power” (p. 26). The separation of powers is fine as far as it goes, in other words, but it would never be a sufficient defense against governmental tyranny, said Calhoun.

Moreover, it is a “great mistake,” Calhoun wrote, to suppose that “the mere insertion of provisions to restrict and limit the powers of the government, without investing those for whose protection they are inserted, with the means of enforcing their observance, will be sufficient to prevent the major and dominant party from abusing its powers” (emphasis added). The party “in possession of the government” will always be opposed to any and all restrictions on its powers. They “will have no need of these restrictions” and “would come, in time, to regard these limitations as unnecessary and improper restraints and endeavor to elude them . . .”

The “part in favor of the restrictions” (i.e., strict constructionists) would inevitably be overpowered. It is sheer folly, Calhoun argued, to suppose that “the party in possession of the ballot box and the physical force of the country, could be successfully resisted by an appeal to reason, truth, justice, or the obligations imposed by the constitution” (emphasis added). He predicted that “the restrictions [of government power in the Constitution] would ultimately be annulled, and the government be converted into one of unlimited powers.” He was right, of course.

This is a classic statement of the Jeffersonian states’ rights position. The people of the free, independent and sovereign states must be empowered with the rights of nullification and secession, and a concurrent majority with veto power over unconstitutional federal laws, if their constitutional liberties are to have any chance of protection, Calhoun believed. The federal government itself can never, ever be trusted to limit its own powers.

How did Calhoun come to such conclusions? One answer to this question is that he was a serious student of politics, history, and political philosophy for his entire life, and understood the nature of government as much as anyone else alive during his time. He also witnessed first hand or quickly learned about the machinations of the sworn enemies of limited constitutional government in America: men such as Alexander Hamilton, John Adams, John Marshall, Joseph Story and Daniel Webster.

The Founding Fathers of Constitutional Subversion

America’s first constitution, the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, did a much better job of limiting the tyrannical proclivities of government than the U.S. Constitution ever did, and it did so while permitting enough governmental power to field an army that defeated the British Empire. The limits on government that the Articles contained outraged the advocates of unlimited governmental powers, such as Alexander Hamilton, which is why the “Perpetual Union” that was created by the Articles was abolished as all the states peacefully seceded from that union


The constitutional convention was Hamilton’s idea as much as anyone’s. Upon arriving at the convention Hamilton laid out the plan of his fellow nationalists: a permanent president or king, who would appoint all governors, who would have veto power over all state legislation. This monopoly government would then impose on the entire nation a British-style mercantilist empire without Great Britain, complete with massive corporate welfare subsidies, a large public debt, protectionist tariffs, and a central bank modeled after the Bank of England that would inflate the currency to finance the empire.

Hamilton did not get his way, of course, thanks to the Jeffersonians. When the Constitution was finally ratified, creating a federal instead of a national or monopolistic, monarchical government, Hamilton denounced the document as “a frail and worthless fabric.” He and his Federalist/nationalist colleagues immediately went to work destroying the limits on government contained in the Constitution. He invented the notion of “implied powers” of the Constitution, which allowed him and his political heirs to argue that the Constitution is not a set of limitations on governmental powers, as Jefferson believed it was, but rather a potential stamp of approval on anything the government ever wanted to do as long as it is “properly” interpreted by clever, statist lawyers like Alexander Hamilton or John Marshall. Hamilton “set out to remold the Constitution into an instrument of national supremacy,” wrote Clinton Rossiter in Alexander Hamilton and the Constitution.

One of the first subversive things Hamilton did was to rewrite the history of the American founding by saying in a public speech on June 29 1787, that the states were merely “artificial beings” and were never sovereign. The “nation,” not the states, was sovereign, he said. And he said this while the constitutional convention was busy crafting Article 7 of the Constitution, which holds that the Constitution would become the law of the land only when nine of the thirteen free and independent states ratified it. The states were to ratify the Constitution because, as everyone knew, they were sovereign and were delegating a few express powers to the central government for their mutual benefit.

It was Hamilton who first invented the expansive interpretations of the General Welfare and Commerce Clauses of the Constitution, which have been used for generations to grant totalitarian powers to the central state. He literally set the template for the destruction of constitutional liberty in America the moment it became apparent at the constitutional convention that he and his fellow nationalists would not get their way and create a “monarchy bottomed on corruption,” as Thomas Jefferson described the Hamiltonian system.

Hamilton’s devoted disciple, John Marshall, was appointed chief justice of the United States in 1801 and served in that post for more than three decades. His career was a crusade to rewrite the Constitution so that it would become a nationalist document that destroyed states’ rights and most other limitations on the powers of the centralized state. He essentially declared in Marbury vs. Madison that he, John Marshall, would be the arbiter of constitutionality via “judicial review.” The Jeffersonians, meanwhile, had always warned that if they day ever came when the federal government became the sole arbiter of the limits of its own powers, it would soon declare that there were, in fact, no limits on its powers. This of course is what the anti-Jeffersonians wanted – and what has happened.

In the case of Martin v. Hunter’s Lessee Marshall invented out of thin air the notion that the federal government had the “right” to veto state court decisions. Marshall also made up the theory that the so-called Supremacy Clause of the Constitution makes the federal government “supreme” in all matters. This is false: The federal government is only “supreme” with regard to those powers that were expressly delegated to it by the free and independent states, in Article 1, Section 8.

Marshall also repeated Hamilton’s bogus theory of the American founding, claiming that the “nation” somehow created the states. He amazingly argued that the federal government was somehow created by “the whole people” and not the citizens of the states through state political conventions, as was actually the case. In the name of “the people,” Marshall said, the federal government claimed the right to “legitimately control all individuals or governments within the American territory” (Edward S. Corwin, John Marshall and the Constitution, p. 131).

All of the Hamilton/Marshall nonsense about the founders having created a monopolistic, monarchical government and having abolished states rights or federalism was repeated for decades by the likes of Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story and Daniel Webster. Story was “the most Hamiltonian of judges,” wrote Clinton Rossiter. His famous book, Commentaries on the Constitution, published in 1833, could have been entitled “Commentaries on Alexander Hamilton’s Commentaries on the Constitution,” says Rossiter. He “construed the powers of Congress liberally,” i.e., meaning there were virtually no limits to such powers; and “upheld the supremacy of the nation,” i.e., of monopolistic, monarchical, and unconstitutional government. Stories Commentaries provided a political roadmap for “the legal profession’s elite or at least among the part of it educated in the North during the middle years of the nineteenth century,” wrote Rossiter.

Story’s “famous” Commentaries are filled with phony history and illogic. On the Articles of Confederation, he wrote that “It is heresy to maintain, that a party to a compact has a right to revoke that compact.” But of course the Articles were revoked!

Secession of a single state would mean “dissolution of the government,” Story wrote. Nonsense. After eleven Southern states seceded in 1860–61 the U.S. government proceeded to field the largest and best-equipped army in the history of the world up to that point. It was hardly “dissolved.”

In a classic of doubletalk, Story admitted that “The original compact of society . . . in no instance . . . has ever been formally expressed at the first institution of a state.” That is, there was never any agreement by the citizens of any state to always and forever be obedient to those who would enforce what they proclaim to be “the general will.” Nevertheless, said Story, “every part should pay obedience to the will of the whole.” And who is to define “the will of the whole”? Why, nationalist Supreme Court justices like Joseph Story and John Marshall, of course.

Story admitted that social contract theories of “voluntary” state formation were mere theoretical fantasies. He also held the rather creepy and totalitarian, if not barbarian view that “The majority must have a right to accomplish that object by the means, which they deem adequate for the end . . . . The will of the majority of the people is absolute and sovereign, limited only by its means and power to make its will effectual.”

What Story is saying here is not that there should be a national plebescite on all policy issues that can express the “will of the majority.” No, as with Hamilton he adopted the French Jacobin philosophy that such a “will” was possessed in the minds of the ruling class, and that that class (the Storys, Hamiltons, Marshalls, etc.) somehow possessed “absolute” power as long as it has the military means to “make its will effectual.” Here we have the theoretical basis for Abe Lincoln’s waging of total war on his own citizens.

Contrary to the political truths expressed by Calhoun which have all proven to be true, by the way Story expressed the elementary-schoolish view that the appropriate response to governmental oppression should be only via “the proper tribunals constituted by the government” which would supposedly “appeal to the good sense, and integrity, and justice of the majority of the people.” Trust the politicians and lifetime-appointed federal judges to enforce their view of “justice,” in other words. That hasn’t really worked out during the succeeding 170 years.

Story also repeated John Marshall’s fable that the Supremacy Clause created a monopolistic government in Washington, D.C. and effectively abolished states’ rights, along with the equally ridiculous myth that the Constitution was magically ratified by “the whole people” (presumably not counting women, who could not vote, or slaves and free blacks).

Another famous and influential subverter of the Constitution was Daniel Webster, who repeated many of these same nationalist fables during his famous U.S. Senate debate with South Carolina’s Robert Hayne in January of 1830. This is a debate that Hayne clearly won according to their congressional colleagues, and the media of the day, although nationalist historians (a.k.a., distorians) have claimed otherwise.

The first Big Lie that Webster told was that “the Constitution of the United States confers on the government itself . . . the power of deciding ultimately and conclusively upon the extent of its own authority.” No, it does not. John Marshall may have wished that it did when he invented judicial review, but the document itself says no such thing. As Senator John Taylor once said, “The Constitution never could have designed to destroy [liberty], by investing five or six men, installed for life, with a power of regulating the constitutional rights of all political departments.”

Webster then presented a totally false scenario: “One of two things is true: either the laws of the Union are beyond the discretion and beyond the control of the States; or else we have no constitution of general government . . .” Huh? All the laws? Are the people to have no say whatsoever about laws they believe are clearly constitutional? Apparently so, said Daniel Webster.

The a-historical fairy tale about the Constitution being somehow ratified by “the whole people” was repeated over and over by Webster. His strategy was apparently to convince his audience not by historical facts but by repetition and bluster. “The Constitution creates a popular government, erected by the people . . . it is not a creature of the state governments,” he bellowed. Anyone who has ever read Article 7 of the U.S. Constitution knows that this is utterly false.

In fine French Jacobin fashion, Webster asked, “Who shall interpret their [the peoples’] will? Why “the government itself,” he said. Not through popular votes, mind you, but through the orders, mandates, and dictates of “the government itself.” The people themselves were to have nothing to do with “interpreting” their own “will.”

Article 3, Section 3 of the U.S. Constitution clearly defines treason under the constitution: “Treason against the United States shall consist in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort.” Thus, treason means levying war against “them,” the sovereign states. This is why Lincoln’s invasion of the Southern states was the very definition of treasonous behavior under the Constitution. Had the North lost the war, he could have been justifiably hanged.

Webster attempted to re-define treason under the Constitution by claiming that “To resist by force the execution of a [federal] law, generally, is treason.” Thus, if the federal government were to invade a sovereign state to enforce one of its laws, a clearly treasonous act under the plain language of the Constitution, resistance to the invasion is what constitutes treason according to Webster. He defined treason, in other words, to mean exactly the opposite of what it actually means in the Constitution.

Then there is the elementary-schoolish faith in democracy as the only necessary defense against governmental tyranny: “Trust in the efficacy of frequent elections,” “trust in the judicial power.” Well, we tried that for decades and decades, Daniel, and it didn’t work.

All of these false histories and logical fallacies were repeated by other nationalist politicians for decades. This includes Abraham Lincoln, who probably lifted his famous line in The Gettysburg Address from this statement by Webster during his debate with Hayne: “It is, Sir, the people’s Constitution, the people’s government, made for the people, made by the people, and answerable to the people. The people of the United States have declared that this Constitution shall be the supreme law.” Of course, they did not.

As Lord Pete Bauer once said in commenting on the rhetoric of communism, whenever one hears of “the people’s republic” the “peoples’ government,” etc., it is a sure bet that the people have nothing whatsoever to do with, or control over that government.

Hamilton, Marshall, Webster, Story, and other nationalists kept up their rhetorical fog-horning for decades, trying to convince Americans that the founding fathers did, after all, adopt Hamilton’s plan of a dictatorial executive that abolished states rights and was devoted to building a mercantilist empire in America that would rival the British empire. But their rhetoric had little or no success during their lifetimes.

New Englanders plotted to secede for a decade after Thomas Jefferson was elected president in 1800; all states, North and South, made use of the Jeffersonian, states’ rights doctrine of nullification to oppose the Fugitive Slave Act, protectionist tariffs, the antics of the Bank of the United States, and other issues up until the 1860s. There was a secession movement in the Mid-Atlantic states in the 1850s, and in 1861 the majority of Northern newspaper editorialists were in support of peaceful secession (see Northern Editorials on Secession by Howard Perkins).


The false, nationalist theory of the American founding was repeated by Abraham Lincoln in his first inaugural address (and praised decades later by Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf, wherein Hitler mad his case for abolishing states’ rights and centralizing all political power in Germany). In the same speech Lincoln threatened “invasion” and “bloodshed” (his words) in any state that failed to collect the newly-doubled federal tariff tax. He then followed through with his threat.

The only group of Americans to ever seriously challenge this false nationalist theory, Southern secessionists, were mass murdered by the hundreds of thousands, including some 50,000 civilians according to James McPherson; their cities and towns were bombed and burned to the ground, tens of millions of dollars of private property was plundered by the U.S. Army; Southern women, white and black, were raped; and total war was waged on the civilian population. This is what finally cemented into place the false, Hamiltonian/nationalist theory of the American founding, for the victors always get to write the history in war. Government of the people, by the people, for the people, is “limited only” by the state’s “power to make its will effectual,” as Joseph Story proclaimed. The technology of mass murder in the hands of the state finally made this will “effectual” in the first half of the 1860s. Americans have been mis-educated and misinformed about their own political history ever since. It is this mis-education, this false theory of history, that serves to prop up the Hamiltonian empire that Americans now slave under.

Thomas J. DiLorenzo [send him mail] is professor of economics at Loyola College in Maryland and the author of The Real Lincoln; Lincoln Unmasked: What You’re Not Supposed To Know about Dishonest Abe and How Capitalism Saved America. His latest book is Hamilton’s Curse: How Jefferson’s Archenemy Betrayed the American Revolution – And What It Means for America Today.

Copyright © 2010 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.
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Rarick
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« Reply #331 on: March 20, 2010, 06:14:53 AM »

Good stuff.  I didn't realise that efforts started before the ink was dry. "articles of confederation"- where do I find those?
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #332 on: March 20, 2010, 07:28:52 AM »

All:

Interesting post Freki.

Please ask about this on our SCH forum threads "American History" and/or "Issues in the American Creed (Constitutional law etc)"

TIA,
Marc
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #333 on: March 22, 2010, 11:09:31 AM »

The Foundation
"Human beings will generally exercise power when they can get it, and they will exercise it most undoubtedly in popular governments under pretense of public safety." --Daniel Webster

Toward the Nationalization of Health Care

The Pied PiperWith Senate and House passage of Barack Hussein Obama's so-called "Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act," liberals have now sealed the deal to nationalize the American health care system -- almost 17 percent of the U.S. economy. Passage of this measure completes the "triple crown" of the Left's Socialist agenda: Social Security, Medicare and now health care. One may conclude that nationalized health care, like Social Security and Medicare before it, will soon be bankrupt. (See how your Senator and Representative voted.)

There is no provision in the United States Constitution giving the central government the authority to nationalize health care, but liberals have never let the Constitution stand in the way of their incremental efforts to socialize the U.S. economy.

Remarks by the leaders of both House Republicans and Democrats demonstrate that neither Party's leadership has sufficient regard for First Principles, for Constitutional Rule of Law.

Most Republicans give it scant lip service, while virtually all Democrats reject Rule of Law outright.

In his remarks about the legislation, Republican Leader John Boehner did mention the Constitution, but repeated the same worn refrains about what the American people want.

"Today, this body, this institution, enshrined in the first article of the Constitution by our Founding Fathers as a sign of the importance they placed on this House, should be looking with pride on this legislation and our work. But it is not so. ... When we came here, we each swore an oath to uphold and abide by the Constitution as representatives of the people. But the process here is broken. The institution is broken. And as a result, this bill is not what the American people need, nor what our constituents want. ... We have failed to listen to America. And we have failed to reflect the will of our constituents."

No, Mr. Boehner. You did not take an oath to support and defend the "will of our constituents."

In her remarks about the legislation, Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi did not, of course, mention the Constitution, but she did offer this adulterated view of First Principles, an outright prevarication: "In [passing this legislation], we will honor the vows of our Founders, who in the Declaration of Independence said that we are 'endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.' This legislation will lead to healthier lives, more liberty to pursue hopes and dreams and happiness for the American people."

This assertion is an affront to everything our Founders embodied in our national documents of incorporation, and Pelosi, et al., know that.

Pelosi added, "You will be joining those who established Medicare and Social Security... This is an American proposal that honors the tradition of our country."

Nails in the coffin!

For his part, Obama remarked, "At a time when the pundits said it was no longer possible, we rose above the weight of our politics. We proved that this government, a government of the people and by the people, still works for the people. ... This isn't radical reform, but it is major reform. This is what change looks like. ... This represents another stone firmly laid at the foundation of the American Dream."

That would be a tombstone, a grave marker for American liberty.

The Gipper
"For many years now, you and I have been shushed like children and told there are no simple answers to the complex problems which are beyond our comprehension. Well, the truth is, there are simple answers, they just are not easy ones. The time has come for us to decide whether collectively we can afford everything and anything we think of simply because we think of it. The time has come to run a check to see if all the services government provides were in answer to demands or were just goodies dreamed up for our supposed betterment. The time has come to match outgo to income, instead of always doing it the other way around." --Ronald Reagan


Political Futures
"House Democrats last night passed President Obama's federal takeover of the U.S. health-care system, and the ticker tape media parade is already underway. So this hour of liberal political victory is a good time to adapt the 'Pottery Barn' rule that Colin Powell once invoked on Iraq: You break it, you own it. This week's votes don't end our health-care debates. By making medical care a subsidiary of Washington, they guarantee such debates will never end. And by ramming the vote through Congress on a narrow partisan majority, and against so much popular opposition, Democrats have taken responsibility for what comes next -- to insurance premiums, government spending, doctor shortages and the quality of care. They are now the rulers of American medicine. ... While the passage of ObamaCare marks a liberal triumph, its impact will play out over many years. We fought this bill so vigorously because we have studied government health care in other countries, and the results include much higher taxes, slower economic growth and worse medical care. As for the politics, the first verdict arrives in November." --The Wall Street Journal

For the Record
"Never before has the average American been treated to such a live-action view of the sordid politics necessary to push a deeply flawed bill to completion. It was dirty deals, open threats, broken promises and disregard for democracy that pulled ObamaCare to this point, and yesterday the same machinations pushed it across the finish line. ... By the weekend, all the pressure and threats and bribes had left the speaker three to five votes short. Her remaining roadblock was those pro-life members who'd boxed themselves in on abortion, saying they would vote against the Senate bill unless it barred public funding of abortion. Mrs. Pelosi's first instinct was to go around this bloc, getting the votes elsewhere. She couldn't. Into Saturday night, Michigan's Bart Stupak and Mrs. Pelosi wrangled over options. The stalemate? Any change that gave Mr. Stupak what he wanted in law would lose votes from pro-choice members. The solution? Remove it from Congress altogether, having the president instead sign a meaningless executive order affirming that no public money should go to pay for abortions. The order won't change the Senate legal language -- as pro-choice Democrats publicly crowed within minutes of the Stupak deal. Executive orders can be changed or eliminated on a whim. Pro-life groups condemned the order as the vote-getting ruse it was. Nevertheless, Mr. Stupak and several of his colleagues voted yes, paving the way to Mrs. Pelosi's final vote tally of 219." --columnist Kimberley Strassel

Liberty
"[Barack Obama's] primary goal has always been to gobble up the health care system. The most troubling aspect of the Obamacare debate, however, is not the measure's sweeping and radical aims -- the transformation of one-sixth of the U.S. economy, crippling tax increases, higher premiums, state-sanctioned rationing, longer waiting lines, the erosion of the quality of medical care and the creation of a huge, permanent administrative bureaucracy. Rather, the most alarming aspect is the lengths to which the Democrats are willing to go to achieve their progressive, anti-capitalist agenda. Obamacare is opposed by nearly two-thirds of the public, more than 60 percent of independents and almost all Republicans and conservatives. It has badly fractured the country, dangerously polarizing it along ideological and racial lines. Even a majority of Democrats in the House are deeply reluctant to support it. Numerous states -- from Idaho to Virginia to Texas -- have said they will sue the federal government should Obamacare become law. They will declare themselves exempt from its provisions, tying up the legislation in the courts for years to come. ... Obama is willing to devour his presidency, his party's congressional majority and - most disturbing - our democratic institutional safeguards to enact it. He is a reckless ideologue who is willing to sacrifice the country's stability in pursuit of a socialist utopia." --columnist Jeffrey Kuhner

 
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Re: The Left
"Democrats consider election losses a small price to pay for health care 'reform.' Predictions range from moderate fall election losses to a bloodbath resulting in a Republican takeover of the House and possibly even the Senate. To this Democrats say, 'So what?' Once health care reform becomes law, that's that. Only a Republican charge with a filibuster-proof Republican supermajority in the Senate could undo it. Besides, President Bill Clinton got re-elected when the Republicans took over the House. ... Some people refuse to see what's best. That's why God created Democrats. Democrats ultimately want a Canadian-style single-payer system. ObamaCare will result in cost overruns, caregivers driven out of business, declining quality, rationing, reduced innovation and bureaucrats determining who gets what, how and when. What then? When the complaints grow loud enough, Democrats will be ready -- with a plan to 'reform' the 'reform.'" --columnist Larry Elder

Reader Comments
"The Constitution requires that Members of Congress take an oath 'to support this Constitution.' The oath is not specified in detail, but the oath currently used says the member will 'support and defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign or domestic.' The President's oath is specified in the Constitution. He must swear to 'preserve, protect and defend the Constitution.' In my view, the President's oath is more sweeping. He has the highest obligation in the land to defend the Constitution and our Liberty. Our current President seems intent on destroying, not preserving, the Constitution, and as quickly as possible." --Robert

"Health is not a right. It is a personal responsibility. Health care is not a right. It is a commodity. Health insurance is not a right. It is a financial risk management tool. Those who try to equate the Constitutional right of 'life' with health, heath care, health insurance have got it completely wrong. The Constitution does not guarantee that the federal government will provide you with life. Instead it guarantees that the federal government will not take life away from you. Unless the government has done something to your health that resulted in the loss of your life, then you have no claim against the government, or a right to its monies (which come from taxes). If you fail to take personal responsibility for your health (proper diet, exercise, life style, etc.), that ain't the government's fault. Its your fault and you should bear the burden. If, for some bizarre reason, you can find a Constitutional requirement for providing health insurance to every citizen of this nation, then haven't we been violating the Constitution for nearly the first 130+ years of it's existence?" --Mike

 
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The Last Word
"Liberals keep complaining that Republicans don't have a plan for reforming health care in America. I have a plan! It's a one-page bill creating a free market in health insurance. Let's all pause here for a moment so liberals can Google the term 'free market.' Nearly every problem with health care in this country -- apart from trial lawyers and out-of-date magazines in doctors' waiting rooms -- would be solved by my plan. In the first sentence, Congress will amend the McCarran-Ferguson Act to allow interstate competition in health insurance. We can't have a free market in health insurance until Congress eliminates the antitrust exemption protecting health insurance companies from competition. ... The very next sentence of my bill provides that the exclusive regulator of insurance companies will be the state where the company's home office is. Every insurance company in the country would incorporate in the state with the fewest government mandates.... The third sentence of my bill would prohibit the federal government from regulating insurance companies, except for normal laws and regulations that apply to all companies. Freed from onerous state and federal mandates turning insurance companies into public utilities, insurers would be allowed to offer a whole smorgasbord of insurance plans, finally giving consumers a choice. Instead of Harry Reid deciding whether your insurance plan covers Viagra, this decision would be made by you, the consumer. (I apologize for using the terms 'Harry Reid' and 'Viagra' in the same sentence. I promise that won't happen again.) Instead of insurance companies jumping to the tune of politicians bought by health-care lobbyists, they would jump to tune of hundreds of millions of Americans buying health insurance on the free market. Hypochondriac liberals could still buy the aromatherapy plan and normal people would be able to buy plans that only cover things such as major illness, accidents and disease. ... This would, in effect, transform medical insurance into ... a form of insurance! My bill will solve nearly every problem allegedly addressed by ObamaCare -- and mine entails zero cost to the taxpayer. Indeed, a free market in health insurance would produce major tax savings as layers of government bureaucrats, unnecessary to medical service in America, get fired. ... In addition to saving taxpayer money and providing better health insurance, my plan also saves trees by being 2,199 pages shorter than the Democrats' plan. Feel free to steal it, Republicans!" --columnist Ann Coulter
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Freki
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« Reply #334 on: March 26, 2010, 12:23:32 AM »

A Tale of Two Revolutions

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Freki
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« Reply #335 on: March 29, 2010, 10:31:40 AM »

Who’s Supreme? The Supremacy Clause Smackdown

by Brion McClanahan

When Idaho Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter signed HO391 into law on 17 March 2010, the “national” news media circled the wagons and began another assault on State sovereignty. The bill required the Idaho attorney general to sue the federal government over insurance mandates in the event national healthcare legislation passed. The lead AP reporter on the story, John Miller, quoted constitutional “scholar” David Freeman Engstrom of Stanford Law School as stating that the Idaho law would be irrelevant because of the “supremacy clause” of the United States Constitution.

In his words, “That language is clear that federal law is supreme over state law, so it really doesn’t matter what a state legislature says on this.” Now that Barack Obama has signed healthcare legislation into law, almost a dozen States have filed suit against the federal government, with Idaho in the lead. Battle lines have been drawn. Unfortunately, the question of State sovereignty and the true meaning of the “supremacy clause” may be swallowed up in the ensuing debate.

Engstrom’s opinion is held by a majority of constitutional law “scholars,” but he is far from correct, and Idaho and the thirty seven other States considering similar legislation have a strong case based on the original intent of the powers of the federal government vis-à-vis the States.

The so-called “supremacy clause” of the Constitution, found in Article 6, states, “This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding [emphasis added].”

The key, of course, is the italicized phrase. All laws made in pursuance of the Constitution, or those clearly enumerated in the document, were supreme, State laws notwithstanding. In other words, the federal government was supreme in all items clearly listed in the document.

A quick reading of the Constitution illustrates that national healthcare is not one of the enumerated powers of the federal government, so obviously Engstrom’s blanket and simplistic statement is blatantly incorrect, but his distortion of the supremacy clause goes further.

The inclusion of such a clause in the Constitution was first debated at the Constitutional Convention on 31 May 1787. In Edmund Randolph’s initial proposal, called the Virginia Plan, the “national” legislature had the ability to “legislate in all cases to which the separate states are incompetent…” and “to negative all laws passed by the several states contravening, in the opinion of the national legislature, the Articles of Union….” John Rutledge, Pierce Butler, and Charles Pinckney of South Carolina challenged the word “incompetent” and demanded that Randolph define the term. Butler thought that the delegates “were running into an extreme, in taking away the powers of the states…” through such language.

Randolph replied that he “disclaimed any intention to give indefinite powers to the national legislature, declaring that he was entirely opposed to such an inroad on the state jurisdictions, and that he did not think any considerations whatever could ever change his determination [emphasis added].” James Madison, the author of the Virginia Plan, was not as forthcoming as to his sentiment. Ultimately, Madison preferred a negative over State law and wished the national legislature to be supreme in call cases. But he was not in the majority.

The Convention again broached a federal negative on State law on 8 June 1787. Charles Pinckney, who presented a draft of a constitution shortly after Randolph offered the Virginia Plan, believed a national negative necessary to the security of the Union, and Madison, using imagery from the solar system and equating the sun to the national government, argued that without a national negative, the States “will continually fly out of their proper orbits, and destroy the order and harmony of the political system.” Such symbolism made for a beautiful picture, but it belied reality.

To most of the assembled delegates, the national government was not the center of the political universe and the States retained their sovereignty. Hugh Williamson of North Carolina emphatically stated he “was against giving a power that might restrain the states from regulating their internal police.”

Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts was against an unlimited negative, and Gunning Bedford of Delaware believed a national negative was simply intended “to strip the small states of their equal right of suffrage.” He asked, “Will not these large states crush the small ones, whenever they stand in the way of their ambitious or interested views?”

When the negative power was put to a vote, seven States voted against it and three for it, with Delaware divided (and Virginia only in the affirmative by one vote). Roger Sherman of Connecticut summarized the sentiment of the majority when he stated he “thought the cases in which the negative ought to be exercised might be defined.” Since the negative did not pass, such a definition was unnecessary.

Thus, the federal government was supreme only in its enumerated powers and it did not have a negative over State law. Supremacy had limits.

By the time the Constitution was debated in the several State ratifying conventions in 1787 and 1788, the “supremacy clause” galvanized opponents of the document. The Constitution, they said, would destroy the States and render them impotent in their internal affairs. The response from proponents of ratification illuminates the true intent of the clause. William Davie, a delegate to the Constitutional Convention from North Carolina and proponent of the Constitution, responded to attacks levied on the “supremacy clause” by stating that:

    This Constitution, as to the powers therein granted, is constantly to be the supreme law of the land. Every power ceded by it must be executed without being counteracted by the laws or constitutions of the individual states. Gentlemen should distinguish that it is not the supreme law in the exercise of power not granted. It can be supreme only in cases consistent with the powers specially granted, and not in usurpations [emphasis added].

Davie wasn’t alone in this opinion. Future Supreme Court justice James Iredell of North Carolina argued that, “This clause [the supremacy clause] is supposed to give too much power, when, in fact, it only provides for the execution of those powers which are already given in the foregoing articles….If Congress, under pretence of executing one power, should, in fact, usurp another, they will violate the Constitution [emphasis added].”

Furthermore, in a foreshadowing of nullification, Iredell argued that, “It appears to me merely a general clause, the amount of which is that, when they [Congress] pass an act, if it be in the execution of a power given by the Constitution, it shall be binding on the people, otherwise not [emphasis added]. Other ratifying conventions had similar debates, and proponents of the Constitution continually reassured wavering supporters that the Constitution would only be supreme within its delegated authority.

Most bought their assurances, though to staunch opponents, the Constitution still vested too much power in the central authority. The States would lose their sovereignty, they argued, and as a result, these men demanded an amendment to the Constitution that expressly maintained the sovereignty of the States and placed limits on federal power. Even several moderate supporters of the Constitution embraced this idea.

Ultimately, the three most powerful States in the Union, New York, Massachusetts, and Virginia, demanded that a bill of rights be immediately added to the Constitution; near the top of those recommended amendments on every list, a State sovereignty resolution. These ultimately became the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution, which reads, “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

Clearly the intent of this amendment was to mitigate any design the federal government had on enlarging its powers through the “supremacy clause.” If the power was not enumerated in the Constitution and the States were not prohibited by the Constitution from exercising said power, then that power was reserved to the States.

Several other constitutional “scholars” have weighed in on the debate in the last week, and each has invoked the “supremacy clause” to defend their opposition to State action against healthcare. Duke Law Professor Neil Siegel went so far as to suggest that the States are not reading the Tenth Amendment correctly. In perhaps the most outlandish statement of the debate, he also said, “Any talk of nullification bothers me because it’s talk of lawlessness.”

I guess Mr. Siegel has failed to consider that Idaho bill HO391 was passed by a legitimate legislative body elected by the people of the State. That would make it lawful.

mcclanahan-founding-fathersOf course, this debate ultimately boils down to loose interpretation verses strict construction. Thomas Jefferson had the best line on this issue. When asked to read between the lines to “find” implied powers, Jefferson responded that he had done that, and he “found only blank space.”

The original intent of both the “supremacy clause” and the Tenth Amendment indicate that Idaho and the other States challenging Obamacare are justified and correct and that the legal profession is either in the tank for the federal government or has not read either the debates of the Constitutional Convention and/or the State ratifying debates. This should make people like Engstrom and Siegel, rather than legitimate State law directed at unconstitutional authority, irrelevant.

Brion McClanahan holds a Ph.D in American history from the University of South Carolina and is the author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Founding Fathers (Regnery, 2009).

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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #336 on: March 30, 2010, 08:09:38 AM »

I've also posted this in the Issues in the American Creed thread on the SCH forum.
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Freki
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« Reply #337 on: April 08, 2010, 08:03:20 AM »



I thought this PJTV Video: "A Crisis Of Consent: Rep. Thaddeus McCotter On A Government Gone Wrong" was interesting and hope you do too.

http://www.pjtv.com/v/3347
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Freki
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« Reply #338 on: April 08, 2010, 10:54:52 PM »

Great speech by Thaddeus McCotter, Republican from Michigan

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Rarick
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« Reply #339 on: April 09, 2010, 06:51:16 AM »

You will not be ablr to sell your house unless you meet a green standard under Cap and Trade.

homesteadingtexas.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=23464

There are links to other sites there to, expect to blow an hour at least, probably a couple of fuses too.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #340 on: April 09, 2010, 08:28:08 AM »

I just took a look there.  It was a quick one, but my initial impression is that several of the citiations are from sites that do not seem reliable.
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Rarick
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« Reply #341 on: April 09, 2010, 10:41:48 AM »

I was wondering,  huh but the initial impact was nasty.  I know a real estate guy who will probably know about it or some references.
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Rarick
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« Reply #342 on: April 10, 2010, 04:52:44 AM »

Okay I found a root document with references to the actual bill.

http://www.realtor.org/wps/wcm/connect/865087004eadb900a294fab684cb314f/government_affairs_clean_energy_myths_facts.pdf?MOD=AJPERES&CACHEID=865087004eadb900a294fab684cb314f

Not that extreme one National Organization of Realtors stepped on it..........or are taking credit for stepping on it?  Still bad, that this kind of legislation is being made tells a lot about the current House............
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #343 on: April 10, 2010, 10:53:13 AM »

Thanks for the leg work.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #344 on: April 16, 2010, 09:43:01 AM »

Much as I hate group politics and generalities, group identity plays some role in voting patterns.  Below is a short piece by Paul Mirengoff at Powerline, he says Obama carried the Jewish vote by a margin of 78-21 but that support is falling. (I posted at 'The Way Forward' that the Dem-Repub split is roughly 90-10 for Blacks, and 60-40 for Hispanic.)  Gay vote split is about 75-25 Dem.  Obama won 41% of white males.  Whichever political side you are on in a divided electorate, making progress in any or all of the groups swings elections.
---------------
"There's a new  poll (http://www.mclaughlinonline.com/lib/sitefiles/National_Jewish_Memo_0410.pdf) according to which 42 percent of American Jewish voters say they would vote to re-elect President Obama and 46 percent say they would consider voting for someone else. But I wonder how many of those among the 46 percent would consider voting for an actual Republican. Nonetheless, the poll provides some evidence of intelligent life among my fellow American Jews. In 2008, according to exit polls, Obama carried the Jewish vote by a margin of 78-21" - Paul Mirengoff, Powerline
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ccp
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« Reply #345 on: April 16, 2010, 12:02:03 PM »

Doug I don't know if you saw my post on the Israel thread on this topic a few days ago.  In heavily Jewish populated Palm Beach County Florida's Congressional district where Wexler secretly and very queitly pulled out and resigned after it was made public he didn't even live there and was using a fraudulent front address the Jews were happy to re-elect by *large* margins another liberal Democrat.

So the answer to your question, "But I wonder how many of those among the 46 percent would consider voting for an actual Republican", is very few.

The liberal Jews will not change their minds to vote Republican.  Only a few would. Most will NEVER vote for a Republican- ever! They will simply not vote.  It won't surpirse me if they start to puch for Hillary redux.


*****  Some Jews are finally wisening up
« Reply #797 on: April 14, 2010, 09:35:45 AM » 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Unfortunately, it seems more based on seniors concern about their health care benefits but not the socialist agenda or the 'one's' throwing Netenyahu under the bus (the latter which I must say is astounding to me).

When push comes to shove though most Jews will still vote the Dem party line.  Look at "Toojay country" in Fla. wherein a demcorat won by huge margins in Wexler's old fraudulent seat.  For God's sake Wexler didn't even live in the community he was representing.  He was using a front address.  And what do my fellow Jews do.  Vote the next in line liberal crat right back in.  Again to liberal Jews, Republicans are worse then Nazis.  I had one Jewish patient complain to me the other day that Fox news was on the cable TV in the office waiting room.  I didn't know it was on.  I come in through the back door and never had any input to what station is on.  Another patient must have put it on I guess.  I share the office with another group.  He used the opportunity to go after Bush, state that the health care bill was needed etc. If we didn't go into Iraq we would have plenty of cash to pay for health care etc etc.

I avoided confrontation and rarely discuss politics with patients.  Occasionally pts do bring up topics I agree with and only then will say I do agree.  We are surely a divided country - it seems to be getting worse not better.

****Obama struggling with Jews, but not on Israel
By Ron Kampeas · April 12, 2010

Photos  1 out of 1
Other Media
This question, in the American Jewish Committee's new survey, asked: "Do you approve or disapprove of the Obama Administration's handling of the Iran nuclear issue?" (AJC) Related LinksSenate letter urging tensions tamp-down gets 76 signatures WASHINGTON (JTA) -- A new survey shows President Obama struggling with American Jews -- but not on Israel-related matters.

The American Jewish Committee poll of U.S. Jews found that Obama's approval rating is at 57 percent, with 38 percent disapproving. That's down from the stratospheric 79 percent approval rating among Jews that Obama enjoyed about a year ago, in May 2009. The AJC poll was conducted March 2-23 and surveyed 800 self-identifying Jewish respondents selected from a consumer mail panel.

Obama's advantage among Jews versus the rest of the population appears to be eroding. The latest Gallup polling shows Obama with a national approval rating of 48, nine points below Jewish polling. Last May, general polling earned him 63 percent approval, 16 points below Jewish polling.

Despite the drop -- and weeks of tensions with the Netanyahu government -- Obama still polls solidly on foreign policy, with a steady majority backing his handling of U.S.-Israel relations, according to the AJC poll.

It is on domestic issues that the president appears to be facing more unhappiness.

Jewish voters are statistically split on how Obama has handled health care reform, with 50 percent approving and 48 disapproving. On the economy he fares slightly better. Jewish voters who favor his policies stand at 55 percent, while 42 percent disapprove.

The last AJC poll on the views of American Jews, released last September, did not address domestic issues, so there's no measure to assess any change in support on the specific issues of health and the economy. Indeed, this is the first poll in at least 10 years in which the AJC has attempted to assess views on the economy and health care. However, Jewish voters in solid majorities describe themselves as Democrats and as liberal to moderate in their views, and traditionally list the economy and health care as their two top concerns in the voting booth.

Matt Brooks, who directs the Republican Jewish Coalition, said the relatively low score on domestic issues underscored what he said was a steady decline in Democratic support among Jewish voters.

"This indicates a serious erosion of support," he said. "It's a huge drop. There's no silver lining" for Democrats.

Ira Forman, the director of the National Jewish Democratic Council, countered that the poll did not account for Jewish voters who might be disappointed with

Obama from a more liberal perspective -- for instance, over his dropping from the reform bill of the so-called public option, which would have allowed for government-run health care.

Additionally, much of the AJC polling took place before Obama's come-from-behind victory on March 21, when the U.S. House of Representatives passed health care reform, Forman said. Since then, Democrats have said they see a turnaround in the president's political fortunes. "The narrative was the president was in the tank," Forman said. "This was when it was thought his initiative was dead."

Obama fares strongly with Jews on homeland security, with 62 percent approving and 33 percent disapproving -- a sign that Republican attempts to cast Obama as weak on protecting the nation have had little impact in the Jewish community.

He also scores 55 percent approval on how he handles U.S.-Israel relations, which is virtually unchanged since last September, when his handling of the relationship scored 54 percent approval. At that juncture, the tensions between Washington and Jerusalem were kept at a low bubble and were confined to U.S. insistence on a total freeze of Israeli settlement, and the Netanyahu administration's reluctance to concede.

The latest questions, however, coincided almost exactly with the period when U.S. officials accused the Netanyahu government of "insulting" the United States by announcing a new building start in eastern Jerusalem while Vice President Joe Biden was visiting, and when the president refused to make public gestures of friendship during Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's subsequent visit to Washington.

A question on Obama's handling of Iran's nuclear capability showed a statistical dead heat on the approval side between last September -- 49 percent -- and now, at 47 percent. However, disapproval ratings rose moderately, apparently borrowing from the "uncertain" column: Back in September 35 percent disapproved; now 42 percent give a thumbs down.

The marks compared favorably, however, with Bush administration figures. Bush scored 33 percent approval ratings on Iran in 2006, the most recent year that AJC asked the question.

Support for U.S. and Israeli attacks on Iran to keep it from making a nuclear bomb appeared to drop slightly. Asked about a U.S. strike, 53 percent said they would support one, and 42 percent were opposed, as opposed to 56 percent and 36 percent last September. On an Israeli strike, 62 percent supported and 33 percent opposed, as opposed to 66 and 28 percent in September.

The only other question in the most recent survey directly addressing Obama's foreign policy also showed strong support for the president: 62 percent of respondents agreed with Obama's decision to deploy an additional 30,000 troops to Afghanistan. This contrasts with the consistently negative Jewish assessments of Bush's handling of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, except in the period immediately following the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.

Approval of Obama's foreign policies contrasts with increasing uneasiness in the Jewish establishment with the administration’s approach. Several influential pro-Israel organizations have spent months, to little avail, pleading with the administration to confine its disagreements to back rooms.

A handful of prominent Jewish backers of candidate Obama also appear to have had second thoughts. Most pointedly, in a New York Daily News column Monday, Ed Koch, the former New York City mayor and a supporter of Obama during the 2008 general election, said he was "weeping" because the president had "abandoned" Israel.

And Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), perhaps the most influential member of the Senate's Jewish caucus, on Sunday pointedly avoided answering a question on ABC's "This Week" about whether he agreed with a Netanyahu confidante who said Obama was a "strategic disaster" for Israel.
Brooks predicted a tide of defections. "You'll have a number of candidates" in areas with a strong Jewish presence "asking him not to campaign for them," he said.

David Harris, AJC's executive director, cautioned that low approval ratings did not necessarily translate into electoral losses.

Brooks said that he would advise GOP candidates to hammer Democrats hard on foreign policy, particularly in tight races in Illinois, Pennsylvania and Florida, where Jewish voters trended less liberal than on the coasts. "If Republican candidates are smart, they will make Democratic candidates in these races answerable to whether they support Obama's policies of pressuring Israel," the head of the Republican Jewish Coalition said.

Jewish Democrats are already preparing a response strategy of arguing that the relationship remains close on defense cooperation and other matters, despite heightened rhetoric on settlement differences.

Harris suggested that the polling showed that the American Jewish public would prefer to imagine a closeness rather than deal with tensions. Obama and Netanyahu scored similar solid majorities -- 55 percent and 57 percent, respectively -- on how they handled the relationship.

American Jews "don't want to be forced to choose," Harris said. "They would rather say a blessing on both your houses than a pox on both your houses."

According to the survey, 64 percent of Jews think Israel should, as part of a peace deal with the Palestinians, be willing to remove at least some of the settlements in the West Bank. But 61 percent rejected the idea that Israel should be willing to "compromise on the status of Jerusalem as a united city under Israeli jurisdiction."

The poll had a margin of error of plus/minus 3 percentage points. Interviews were conducted by the firm Synovate, formerly Market Facts.****

 
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DougMacG
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« Reply #346 on: April 17, 2010, 11:38:27 AM »

"the answer to your question, "But I wonder how many of those among the 46 percent would consider voting for an actual Republican", is very few."

CCP, thanks.  I agree and I did read the previous.  The question comes from the powerline post quoted. My point is that any noticable gain with any of these groups is a big deal.  If republicans can win 25%  of Jewish vote it chips away at those historic differences. Same for winning >10% of black vote or >40% of Hispanic vote.  These could be decisive in a divided nation and shift the momentum for the future.

I find it strange that I am more pro-Israel than Jewish voters, more pro-life than Catholic voters and more protective of the right to keep wealth than the wealthy, more pro-family and pro-marriage as a single father than most intact Hispanic families, stronger on school choice than the majority of those who live in failed districts etc, but those who appear to me to be voting against their own interests offer the greatest opportunity for political change IMO even if it is small and slow.
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ccp
Power User
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Posts: 4198


« Reply #347 on: April 18, 2010, 09:04:17 AM »

"If Republicans can win 25%  of Jewish"

Agreed and I hope so.  I remember one of my uncles who I thought was a die hard Democrat suprising me when he came out at a family gathering as voraciously anti-Clinton. 

My uncle a WW2 vet, on the only allied ship that was sunk during D day would describe how he just couldn't get over the fact that a person like Clinton could be commander-in-chief.

I don't know what he thinks about Obama per se, but I could guess what he thought about the "Obama go around the World apologizing for America tour".
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prentice crawford
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Posts: 778


« Reply #348 on: May 08, 2010, 07:09:41 PM »

Woof,
 Hopefully this will start a trend within the party to get rid of these Liberal infiltrators, John McCain, Mitt Romney among many others.

 www.msnbc.msn.com/id/37038395/ns/politics

                       P.C.

 
« Last Edit: May 08, 2010, 07:13:17 PM by prentice crawford » Logged

Crafty_Dog
Administrator
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Posts: 31662


« Reply #349 on: May 09, 2010, 01:00:38 AM »

Only if the Rep candidate wins in November.
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