Wednesday, March 31, 2010

More On the Offshore Oil Bravo Sierra

Obama opens up offshore drilling...or does he?

The headlines read that President Obama is opening up the oil spigots and attempting to wean America off its dependence on foreign oil. But that's what the headlines read - what's the rest of the story? Rep. Mike Pence says this: “As usual the devil is in the details. Only in Washington, D.C., can you ban more areas to oil and gas exploration than you open up, delay the date of your new leases and claim you’re going to increase production."
Michelle Malkin has the details HERE.

Employers 'unexpectedly' cut jobs
Experts should really stop trying to predict the jobs numbers because they never get it right and Americans are mislead to think it's shocking news. The latest numbers are no exception - experts say the month of March saw 'unexpected' job reductions by employers. Unexpected to who? The Marxists who think big government actually works? Get the latest on the economy HERE

Scientist: We can't save Earth
According to a top scientist, it's too late. Humans are at the mercy of mother Earth. The scientist who achieved fame for his theory that the whole Earth is a single organism now believes the only hope is that the Earth will take care of itself. Excellent! Now it’s time to fire up the SUV's, get our incandescent light bulbs back - and leave them on! Read the full story HERE.

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Voting While White

Wes Pruden

PRUDEN: Shunning the party of whiners
We're not yet a nation wholly of whiners, but some of our congresspersons are working on it. Democrats who should have been taking a victory lap spent a week cowering in fear of the contents of a tea cup. No wonder real men — mostly but, by no means all, white — are shunning the Democrats.

The polling gurus are finding that millions of the white men who helped put Barack Obama in the White House are leaving the Democrats in great numbers, and this could lead to really bad news in November. Gallup finds that white male support for a Democratic Congress has fallen 8 percentage points since last summer, while the support of women has remained remarkably steady. White women who voted for Mr. Obama continue to support him, but only 38 percent of white men support him now. Unless the president and his party find a way to reverse this trend they must prepare for an epic bath nine months hence.

Accomplishing such a turnaround would require first of all for Democrats to pipe down about what a tough life they have. Life is real, often hard, and, as Damon Runyon famously said to a whiner at the poker table, "three out of three people die, so shut up and deal." Democrats in Congress who got their way in the health care "reform" debate are frightened now that the people they abused are angry and determined to do something about it. With the help of the compliant "mainstream" media, they have created the specter of a tsunami of hate, bigotry, racism, slander, rock-throwing, spitting, irritable bowel syndrome and seven-year itch. Sarah Palin has got the Democrats particularly spooked.

Read the rest here

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So Here's the Deal on Offshore Drilling

New York Times -- Obama to Open Offshore Areas to Oil Drilling for First Time
If the Senate is willing to get on board with global warning legislation, President Obama might allow some expanded oil exploration off the U.S. coast.
Writer John Broder wonders if this will alienate enviros, but since the plan is limited in scope, delayed and conditional, only the hard liners will grouse. These days, Obama is flying so high with the Left that he could move Yucca Mountain to ANWAR and sign the order in a sealskin coat and probably get away with it.
Though the move will jazz pressies who are looking for new examples of Obama’s post health-care powers, it seems unlikely that this will break up the bipartisan coalition against cap and trade.
What Obama is essentially offering to do is not fight fir the extension of an existing congressional moratorium on offshore drilling. That has limited stroke in terms of a compromise offer since an extension would have been election year poison to Democrats anyway.
And what the president would do himself won’t happen for a long time. Expect Republicans to cheer his first step and call for him to go the rest of the way.
“The first lease sale off the coast of Virginia could occur as early as next year in a triangular tract 50 miles off the coast that had already been approved for development but was held up by a court challenge and additional Interior Department review, officials said.
But as a result of the Obama decision, the Interior Department will spend several years conducting geologic and environmental studies along the rest of the southern and central Atlantic Seaboard. If a tract is deemed suitable for development, it is listed for sale in a competitive bidding system. The next lease sales — if any are authorized by the Interior Department — would not be held before 2012.”

Wall Street Journal -- White House Court Brief Backs Race-Based Admissions
The racial preferences in the University of Texas admissions process are likely to be the next battlefield in the war over affirmative action.
UT reserves three quarters of its freshman slots for students in the top 10 percent of in state high schools. The other quarter are selected on “holistic” criteria designed to boost black and Hispanic enrollment.
The program, instituted three years ago, is intended to help minority students in majority-white schools who lag their pallid peers.
While the Supreme Court upheld University of Michigan Law School’s right to discriminate subjectively to achieve a more diverse student body in 2007, this is a different case with a different court.
Because of the statistical discrimination and hard quotas, there are fewer penumbras in which to hide discrimination and Justice Alito is not of the same race-centric generation as his predecessor, Sandra Day O’Connor.
Writer Jess Bravin explains that seeing where the train is heading, the Obama administration is getting ready for a passionate defense of the quota system.
With the Fifth Circuit taking up the case, expect a real brouhaha.
“‘[The] university's effort to promote diversity is a paramount government objective,’ says the brief filed by the Education and Justice departments. The administration disputed claims that Texas was simply engaging in raw racial preferences.
‘The question is not whether an individual belongs to a racial group, but rather how an individual's membership in any group may provide deeper understanding of the person's record and experiences, as well as the contribution she can make to the school,’ the brief says.”

New York Times -- Despite Doubt, Karzai Brother Retains Power
The argument against President George W. Bush’s strategy for stabilizing Iraq and Afghanistan was that if the locals didn’t think we would ever leave they would never stand up and govern themselves.
But now that we have a timetable for our colossal nation-building effort in Afghanistan, how can we get friendly Afghans to change their ways if they know that we will start trying to pull out in 14 months?
As Examiner colleague Sara Carter points out today, the Pakistanis are fuming because some of the Talibani they hand over to the Afghans end up getting cut loose as part of side deals with the government in Kabul.
The larger problem is that Hamid Karzai will need his own warlord coalition to have any kind of chance to govern if the U.S. really could execute a 2011 drawdown. That urge to survive, of course, only makes it more likely that the drawdown will not come to pass and that our commitment to Afghanistan will deepen, not wane.
Writer Dexter Filkins looks again at Karzai’s brother, Ahmed, who seems to function as a go-between from the government to the narco-warlords with whom the government is looking to forge a separate peace.
Ahmed Karzai is also the Donald Trump of Afghanistan, doing real estate deals (where he knows NATO forces will need property) and providing his own security force to protect his assets, a force which might one day form the core of a Karzai family palace guard.
“Perhaps the most vivid example of Ahmed Wali Karzai’s reach came last August, when his brother sought re-election. According to Western diplomats in Kabul, he cut deals with insurgent groups to refrain from attacking polling stations, and then helped orchestrate a large-scale campaign of forging ballots on his brother’s behalf. “

Washington Post -- In blueprint for Haiti, U.S. takes new approach to aid
The Obama administration has decided not to let the crisis of the Haitian earthquake go to waste.
Writer Mary Beth Sheridan got an advance look at Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s $1 billion nation-building plan for the island kleptocracy.
The idea is to take the techniques we’ve honed in Iraq and Afghanistan and apply them to Haiti.
The reason the billions poured into Haiti before went down the rat hole of corruption was because America had to work through the existing government (or try to pick sides among the existing corrupt factions). The new way is to make a government to our liking from the ground up. That $1 billion will turn into $10 billion in no time.
“The most dramatic change is an effort to build up Haiti's fragile government, instead of working around it. In an emergency spending request sent to Congress last week, the administration says it will help reconstruct the Haitian government, paying for new ministry offices. More broadly, the goal is to develop the framework of a modern state -- spending money to help Haiti create building codes, regulatory systems and anticorruption standards. U.S. funds would be used to train and pay Haitian officials… Now, all but one of its ministries are in ruins. Nearly 17 percent of Haiti's civil servants died in the disaster…
The Obama administration insists that its plan will help the Haitian government with its own priorities -- not impose a U.S. vision. The plan, however, allots $48 million to housing and offices for up to 300 short- and long-term U.S. personnel.

Shelby Steele -- Barack The Good
Steele is a man at the peak of his powers. As writer who focuses on race and American culture, the Age of Obama is prime time for Steele.
His latest is a meditation on the perils of having a president who was history making from the moment he won office. You really must read this piece.
“Mr. Obama's success has always been ephemeral because it was based on an illusion: that if we Americans could transcend race enough to elect a black president, we could transcend all manner of human banalities and be on our way to human perfectibility. A black president would put us in a higher human territory. And yet the poor man we elected to play out this fantasy is now torturing us with his need to reflect our grandiosity back to us.
Many presidents have been historically significant in retrospect, but Mr. Obama had historic significance on his inauguration day. His inauguration told a transcendent American story. Other presidents work forward into their legacy. Mr. Obama is working backwards into his.”

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DWW-Driving While White

One Nation Under Arrest

Before President Barack Obama took over the White House, no United States citizen had ever been forced by the federal government to buy a product against their will. But now, thanks to the passage of Obamacare, Americans, by dint of their mere existence, are now required to purchase Obama administration approved health insurance or face a penalty assessed through the Internal Revenue Code. This is simply unprecedented. The income tax doesn't kick in until an American earns income. Auto liability insurance doesn't become mandated until an American chooses to drive (and even then it's only by the state). And farmers must first grow food before they are subject to the regulations of the Department of Agriculture.

But facing federal government sanction for simply breathing? That is a troubling assault on American liberty.

Obamacare is just the latest example of the growing reach of the federal government into all aspects of our lives. While the final bill passed by Congress specifically made the noncompliance with an IRS individual mandate penalty not a crime, far too often when the spotlight of American attention is not focused on an issue, Congress has gone ahead and criminalized what was once before perfectly normal behavior. Consider, for example, small-time inventor and entrepreneur Krister Evertson, whose story is recounted by Heritage fellows Brian Walsh and Hans von Spakovsky:

In May 2004, FBI agents driving a black Suburban and wearing SWAT gear ran Evertson off the road near his mother's home in Wasilla, Alaska. When Evertson was face down on the pavement with automatic weapons trained on him, an FBI agent told him he was being arrested because he hadn't put a federally mandated sticker on a UPS package.

A jury in federal court in Alaska acquitted Evertson, but the feds weren't finished. They reached into their bag of over 4,500 federal crimes and found another ridiculous crime they could use to prosecute him: supposedly "abandoning" hazardous waste (actually storing, in appropriate containers, valuable materials he was using for the clean-fuel technology he was developing). A second jury convicted him, and he spent 21 months in an Oregon federal prison

Putting the wrong stamp on a package. Storing your own property own your own land. When did these actions become federal crimes? Why? How can we stop them?

A new book launched yesterday and published by The Heritage Foundation answers these questions. One Nation Under Arrest: How Crazy Laws, Rogue Prosecutors, and Activist Judges Threaten Your Liberty documents how over the past 50 years the politicization of American criminal law and practice has created traps for millions of innocent and unwary Americans and threatens to make criminals out of those who are just doing their best to be respectable, law abiding citizens.

In 1998, an American Bar Association task force estimated that there were over 3,000 federal criminal offenses scattered throughout the 50 titles of the United States Code. Just six years later, that number is estimated to be over 4,000 and Columbia law professor John Coffee estimates that the federal government could use the criminal process to enforce as many as 300,000 federal regulations.

Lavrentiy Beria, the chief of the Soviet security and secret police under Stalin reputedly said, "Show me the man, and I'll find you the crime." Our country is by no means a Soviet police state yet, but a federal government empowered with a sprawling code that makes all of us potential criminals is more than just an existential threat to American Liberty. This overcriminalization trend must end. Become informed. Learn the issues. Buy the book. And fight back.

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How the Radical Left Views Us

Randy's Right has this posted.
Be prepared for poseurs, infilitrators and trouble-makers.
On April 15th thousands of right-wingers will attend rallies in cities and towns across the United States. The organizers of this nationwide day of protest call it a tea party. This tea party movement that emerged only a year ago is a coalition of conservatives, anti-Semites, fascists, libertarians, racists, constitutionalists, militia men, gun freaks, homophobes, Ron Paul supporters, Alex Jones conspiracy types and American flag wavers.

Those American flag wavers and the constitutionalists are the ones that worry me the most. There's no telling what we'll do.

I resent being lumped in with the ronbots and Alex Jones conspiracy types, though; I was a conspiracy freak long before Jones started spouting insane theories.

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We've Lost Patience With Them

The Nation's Pulse
America's Quiet Anger

There is a quiet anger boiling in America.

It is the anger of millions of hard-working citizens who pay their bills, send in their income taxes, maintain their homes and repay their mortgage loans -- and see their government reward those who do not.

It is the anger of small town and Middle American folks who have never been to Manhattan, who put their savings in a community bank and borrow from a local credit union, who watch Washington lawmakers and presidents of both parties hand billions in taxpayer bailouts to the reckless Wall Street titans who brought down the economy in 2008.

It is the fury of the voiceless, the powerless, the ordinary nobodies of Flyover Country who are ridiculed, preached to, satirized and insulted by the Celebrity Loudmouths of the two Left Coasts, the Jon Stewarts and Keith Olbermanns, the Paul Krugmans and their ilk.

It is the salted wound of the millions who see that ruling Democrats in Congress are not listening to them but are willfully ignoring public opinion and the verdict of recent elections in passing a huge new health care entitlement when the existing entitlements of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid are already going broke.

It is the frustrating helplessness of citizens who revere the Founding Fathers and the genius of the Constitution that they wrote, who actually believe the words of the Constitution mean what they say, not more and not less. They who watch politicians and the courts stretch and bend that Constitution -- finding "rights" not enumerated, powers never granted, meanings unimagined -- believe that their country is being redefined without their consent.

Most of the angry are not out marching in the streets, waving signs or shouting into bullhorns. And they are not smashing windows or phoning death threats to politicians. They are simply waking up angry in the morning, and going to bed angry at night. And their resentment is multiplied by the media's efforts to portray them all as dangerous, crazy people, and by the effort of certain Democrats to tar them with brush of violent intent.

They are embittered, too, by the rhetoric of a triumphant president who turns on its head Winston Churchill's heroic attitude promising defiance in defeat but magnanimity in victory. For a president of a deeply divided country, defiance in victory is not an endearing posture. It has all the persuasive charm of a Chad Ochocinco victory dance in the end zone of the opponent's stadium.

These quietly angry people gather in their churches while their religions are called divisive and their beliefs are labeled as bigotry, and they pray for a better day. They talk among themselves in their Main Street cafes, at the Rotary club or at their kids' softball games, seeking others who understand their frustration and will not respond with arrogant dismissal.

They are tired of being told they are too stupid to understand the country's complex problems, too rooted in the past to find solutions, too selfish to share what they have worked for with everyone else who wants it.

They are not reaching for guns or for pitchforks. They are holding their anger within, waiting for their time, watching those in power over-reach and over-indulge.

Their wound is deep, and it will not be salved by more presidential speeches, Congressional hand-outs, or promises of wonderful things to come. They no longer believe any of that. Their quiet rage abides, waiting till it can be expressed in that
silent place behind the curtain where the ballot lists the names that they have now committed to an angry memory.

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Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Why Obamacare Can Be Repealed

BY John McCormack
Sean Trende has an important piece at RealClearPolitics, which I won't excerpt because you really should read the whole thing.

Update: Also not to be missed is Jeffrey Anderson's A Three-Year Plan for the Repeal of ObamaCare.

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Women and Guns

Feel-Good Story: More Women Buying Firearms
BY Mary Katharine Ham

It does make me all warm and fuzzy:
A 2009 study found 70 percent of shop owners reported more female buyers.

The study, conducted by the National Shooting Sports Foundation and Southwick Associates, also found 80 percent of the female gun-buyers who responded said they purchased a gun for self-defense, followed by 35 percent for target practice and 24 percent for hunting.

Despite this study, another long-term study, conducted from 1980-2008 found that the demographics of gun ownership had stayed rather static. But if women made up a larger proportion of the post-election uptick in gun sales than in the past, as some shop owners suggest, it would put a different face on those sales, which are routinely characterized as a white, male trend of redneck paranoia.

Might I posit that this study combined with a recent Quinippiac poll, which showed that the Tea Party movement is majority female, suggests no one should try to physically attack a group of Tea Party moms on a dark night. (Disclaimer for Democrats: This is not to be construed as an incitement to violence, or a euphemism for political violence, or a glorification of violence. It is rather a celebration of the idea of women who are prepared to defend themselves should someone try to hurt them, which is always something that makes me smile.)

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An Overture or A Smokescreen?

Be very careful when the opposition seems to be giving you what you want, it usually means there is something being taken somewhere else.

Government set to unveil offshore drilling plan

The plan could pave the way for a significant new domestic source of energy, helping to reduce U.S. dependence on oil imports and boost supplies of natural gas used to displace coal in power plants as the country works to reduce emissions of climate-changing greenhouse gases.

Last month, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said he wanted to release the updated drilling plan by the end of March.

Two industry sources said on Monday President Barack Obama was expected to give a speech about energy security on Wednesday, which could include his views on expansion of offshore drilling.

The Interior Department and White House declined comment on Monday on whether Obama would speak to the issue in a speech slated for mid-morning on Wednesday at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland.

The administration has been weighing the pros and cons of offshore drilling since it took office and put the brakes on a Bush-era proposal that called for drilling along the East Coast and off the coast of California.

For more than 20 years, drilling was banned in most offshore areas of the United States outside the Gulf of Mexico because of concerns spills could harm the environment.

Congress allowed the prohibition to expire in 2008 and former President George W. Bush lifted a drilling moratorium that year. Environmental groups and some lawmakers continue to raise concerns about the impact increased drilling would have on coastal areas.

But Obama, who wants Congress to move a stalled climate change bill, has sought to reach out to Republicans by signaling he is open to allowing offshore drilling, providing coastlines are protected.

The U.S. Geological Survey estimates the U.S. Atlantic coast waters may hold 37 trillion cubic feet of gas and nearly 4 billion barrels of oil, while the Pacific Coast has 10.5 billion barrels of oil and 18 trillion cubic feet of gas.

To put that in context, the United States imports about 2 billion barrels of oil a year from OPEC nations and is expected to import 2.7 trillion cubic feet of natural gas from all sources this year, according to the Energy Department.

The administration's plan is expected to spell out whether and when drilling will be allowed in 3 million acres off the Virginia coast.

The Bush administration had proposed leasing the Virginia tracts to energy companies and said the government would receive bids for the leases in November 2011.

However, a senior Interior official told an oil industry conference in January that drilling off Virginia's coast would definitely be delayed past the original 2011 leasing date.

The proposed Virginia lease area, located about 50 miles from shore, may hold 130 million barrels of oil and 1.14 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

The possible delay in drilling off Virginia's coast has been criticized by the state's new governor, Republican Bob McDonnell, and two U.S. senators eager for the state to tap into the jobs and royalties that come with exploration.

A spokeswoman for McDonnell said his office has not been told the updated drilling plan would be announced on Wednesday.

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Pure Awesome


Shooting, Machine Guns, and Bacon! AAAAAAAAhhhhhh!!!!!!

too....much.....awesome.......must ........hold.....on.....

me want!

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Morning Must Reads from DCExaminer

NBC News -- Obama: I’ll continue to reach out to GOP
One would be tempted to say NBC was the most ridiculous and fawning of all the news organizations when it comes to interviewing President Obama – Brian Williams going out for burgers with the president, etc. – but that would be giving short shrift to CBS. Sixty Minutes man Steve Kroft has been nuzzling Obama since back in the Democratic primaries and on Friday, Harry Smith will interview the president during a game of hoops at the White House basketball court – with a cheesy cross promotion to the network’s March madness coverage. That’s bush league, even for a morning show.

But NBC probably still wins the battle of the lightweights on points.

This morning, the president’s interview with Matt Lauer aired on Today. Credulous throughout, asked the president was if he really he could reach out to the Right, despite all the things they’ve said and done. Obama said that though conservatives are undeserving, he would still help them overcome their petty fears and prejudices.

The Lauer interview, Smith’s hoop dreams, and the visit to snub Hamid Karzai in person in Afghanistan, are all part of the rollout of the new, new Obama – the tough guy who gets results.

Today Obama will also sign the health care reconciliation bill, which the White House is re-branding as a college loan bill. The feds took over the student loan program to Hoover up billions of dollars currently going to private bank interest and repurpose it to Obamacare. The bill also adds hundreds of billions in new taxes, including a 4 percent tax on investment income.

But the message from Obama: those who oppose his policies (say, 54 percent of the electorate) have been led astray by radical and racist xenophobes who hate him personally and have no legitimate reason to dissent. Obama blames the news media for spreading these bitter, clinging instincts to other succeptable minds. (To complain about bad press in the middle of such sycophancy must have been some kind of veiled joke.)

If you think that spending $2 trillion when we’re already $12 trillion in the hole and that putting a government that has failed to steward the existing welfare programs in charge of the rest of health care sound crazy, you’ve probably been misled by a birther and may soon unwittingly join a militia.

Lauer did not ask the obvious questions – Are you concerned that making these invidious distinctions for your own political gain will further divide the country? Are you concerned that it will backfire?

Brett Baier, and to a lesser extent, George Stephanopoulos are so far the only interviewers who I’ve seen question Obama’s assumptions.

But maybe I’m just mad because Obama jinxed my WVU Mountaineers by picking them to beat Duke and win the national championship. You know Obama’s a Duke guy. Why pick on West Virginia?

“Moving back to domestic topics, Obama took a measured view of the Tea Party movement that has focused its anger on him and his administration. He took care to distinguish between the people who question his citizenship and who are convinced he’s a socialist and those who are simply concerned about the future of a country going through economic turmoil.

‘There's a part of the Tea Party that actually did exist before I was elected … where there's some folks who just weren't sure whether I was born in the United States, whether I was a socialist. Then I think that there's a broader circle around that core group of people who are legitimately concerned about the deficit, who are legitimately concerned that the federal government may be taking on too much. And I think those are folks who have legitimate concerns. And my hope is that as we move forward and we're tackling things like the deficit, imposing a freeze on domestic spending, taking steps that show we are sincere about dealing with our long-term problems that some of that group will dissipate.’”

New York Times -- Companies Push to Repeal Provision of Health Law
The shady accounting of the Republicans’ Medicare drug benefit depended on companies continuing to cover retirees’ prescriptions, which was going the way of the defined-benefit pension plan. As an enticement to stay in the game, big employers were given a direct subsidy of 28 percent of the value of the drug benefits but also allowed to deduct the amount of that subsidy from their corporate taxes.

In crafting Obamacare, Democrats took away the subsidy write off and plugged the revenue from continued, consistent consumption into their fantasy accounting projections for the president’s plan.

Of course now that there’s less subsidy, there will be less lavish retirement benefits. And those retirees’ drugs will be 100 percent subsidized on Medicare instead of 28 percent subsidized on a corporate plan.

I hate to be the one to break the news, but this whole universal health insurance thing could turn out to be pretty expensive.

Companies are charging off the loss of revenue as SEC rules require and preparing to change benefits packages. The politically obsessed White House, of course, believes that it’s all political. If the companies would embrace, instead of resisting change – they would see that less money is really more money.

But what will they do about labor?
“Gerry Shea, the A.F.L.-C.I.O.’s chief strategist on health care, stopped short of calling for a repeal of the provision. ‘We’re very concerned about the disruption that could be caused because of this, with people being pushed out of employer plans,’ he said. ‘With all the changes we’re looking at because of the new health legislation, we feel you don’t need this.’

Mr. Klein argued that the provision would undercut Mr. Obama’s job creation plans. ‘If companies are going to take a hit like this on their financial statements that will certainly hurt their ability to borrow in the marketplace and make the type of investments that will retain and create jobs,’ he said.”

New York Times -- Afghan Leader Is Seen to Flout Influence of U.S.
If you can’t do anything about a problem, why pick at it?

As Ambassador Eikenberry’s cables show, we’ve known that Hamid Karzai is not exactly Mustafa Kemal for a long time.

We had the chance to force him out or let the wolves carry him away and start over with the new replacement, but opted to stick with our man if Afghanistan. So there’s no chance that we will now decide to plunge the country into chaos just at the moment we are trying to pacify and stabilize Afghanistan.

What’s the point of President Obama calling out Karzai for being the figurehead of a marginal government of a narco state ruled by warlords? Presumably it must have something to do with mollifying American liberals because it sure doesn’t play in the Hindu Kush, where everyone is waiting for the attempted U.S. drawdown to begin.

Writers Dexter Filkins and Mark Landler give us the back story.
“This month, with President Hamid Karzai looking ahead to a visit to the White House, he received a terse note from aides to President Obama: Your invitation has been revoked.
The reason, according to American officials, was Mr. Karzai’s announcement that he was emasculating an independent panel that had discovered widespread fraud in Mr. Karzai’s re-election last year.

Incensed, Mr. Karzai extended an invitation of his own — to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian president, who flew to Kabul and delivered a fiery anti-American speech inside Afghanistan’s presidential palace.

“Karzai was enraged,” said an Afghan with knowledge of the events, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the delicacy of the issue. “He invited Ahmadinejad to spite the Americans.”

The dispute was smoothed over only this week, when Mr. Obama flew to Kabul for a surprise dinner with Mr. Karzai.”

Washington Post -- Under shadow of 1957, Arkansas stays out of health-care fight
Writer Peter Slevin tells us that states resisting the imposition of Obamacare in court are walking the same path that the states who fought the application of Brown v. Topeka Board of Education.

What dreck.

Democratic Gov. Mike Bebee of Arkansas said he would not join the dozens of chief executives considering a legal battle to prevent their citizens from being forced into Obamacare. Bebee told reporters that when Arkansas tried to resist Brown v. Board in 1957 it lost, just as the other state would loose this fight too.

Grasping for any link between Obamacare resistance and racism – the very motif Democrats served up on the day they passed the bill – Slevin was off like a shot to Little Rock to soak up this new evidence of moral equivalency between racism and health opposition.

The states fighting Obamacare are seeking a Supreme Court ruling, not resisting one. The states that seek to block the insurance mandate want to preserve individual rights, not impede them.

Also, health care is not a racial issue.

Slevin does not note these differences. Neither does he treat detractors with a shred of fairness.
It’s one thing to do as Matt Lauer does and not question the president’s assumptions, but doing the work of Democrats looking to demonize their political foes is something even worse.

“When President Dwight D. Eisenhower (R) federalized the Arkansas National Guard and sent soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division to protect the Little Rock Nine, he told the nation that the Supreme Court's ruling was ‘the law of the land.’ When Obama signed the health-care bill into law at the White House, he said health insurance ‘is the law of the land.’

[Democratic Attorney General Dustin] McDaniel used the same phrase as he explained why Arkansas will not join the lawsuits.

‘The law of the land does, in fact, come from our elected officials in Washington,’ McDaniel said. ‘A state deciding that it wants to singularly defy federal law simply because the citizens may not like it -- that's not the way the democratic process works. That's not the way the Constitution is set up.’”

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You'll Find Out When Its Law

Obstensibly thinking by then it will be too late to do anything about it.

$1 Billion AT&T Headache is Just Obamacare's First Side Effect
In the closing days of the Congressional health care debate, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) told the National Association of Counties: "We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it."

Today marks the end of just the first week of life under Obamacare and Speaker Pelosi has been proven right: we are just now finding out what is in it. This past Friday, AT&T, the biggest U.S. telephone company, announced that it would take a $1 billion charge against earnings thanks to tax changes buried in the 2,300+ page bill. $1 billion. That is a full third of AT&T's $3 billion earnings for the fourth quarter of 2009.

The tax charges stem from changes Obamacare makes to the tax treatment of prescription-drug benefits for retirees. Companies used to be able to deduct part of their costs for providing drug benefits to their retirees, but Obamacare cancels that deduction. Roland McDevitt, director of health care research at Towers Watson, tells the Wall Street Journal, they "have a stream of tax benefits they are losing way out in the future." Since companies had counted on these deductions for current and future retirees as an existing asset under the old law, accounting rules require firms to take the full loss for the change in the same quarter in which the tax law is changed. Hence Friday's announcement to inform shareholders that AT&T's bottom line was about to take a $1 billion hit.

AT&T's billion-dollar Obamacare headache is so large due to the size (281,000 employees) of the company. Piper Jaffray & Co. analyst Chris Larsen tells Bloomberg: "Companies like AT&T, that have large employee bases, are going to have higher health-care costs and, therefore, lower earnings unless they can negotiate something or offer less to their employees." And changes to current and future retirees' health care seem to be exactly what will AT&T will do as a side effect of Obamacare. AT&T wrote in their Friday filing: "As a result of this legislation, including the additional tax burden, AT&T will be evaluating prospective changes to the active and retiree health-care benefits offered by the company."

And AT&T is not alone. Towers Watson estimates that just this tax change alone will eliminate $14 billion in U.S. corporate profits. That's $14 billion less American employers have to spend creating new jobs when our unemployment rate is still 9.7%.

And AT&T is not the only company informing employees that Obamacare is going to mean worse care for them. Verizon Communications, the second biggest U.S. phone company, told employees last week that Obamacare "may have significant implications for both retirees and employers."

The Heritage Foundation will be keeping you apprised of all of the consequences of Obamacare as they are learned with our new Foundry feature "Side Effects." Already our health care experts have identified negative intended and unintended consequences from the legislation to children's health insurance and health insurance taxes.

The American people already do not like this law. But to repeal it, we must keep Americans educated about all of Obamacare's failures and offer our “Second Opinion” on what conservative idea would fix it.

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Economic Justice

The term is thrown around as a talking point of the left to justify their massive takeover of the American economy, as if it were something that can be manufactured with a word processor and good thoughts.

Economic justice is available to everyone who lives in America. As a matter of fact, America is the only country in existence which provides the vehicle for all Americans to achieve economic justice. Its called the free-market system, or capitalism.

What is economic justice? Economic justice is when you punch a clock for ten years, putting up with anal retentive managers and then buy the company and fire the managers.

Economic justice is acheived when you put 30 years in service, retire, buy a motorhome and tour the country. Economic justice is putting your kids through college; help them get a degree in whatever field they choose and having your chldren return the favor by taking care of you when you need it.

In other words, economic justice is personal responsibility and initiative applied to financial decisions.

It can't be regulated, legislated or forced. It can't be given to one without taking it from someone else. It must be earned.

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Oy Vey, y'all!

Happy Passover, Y'all!

shameless taken from RedState who stole it from Wizbang



VA-11 News on Healthcare Repeal

Fimian, Herrity sign on to health care repeal pledges
By: William C. Flook

The two Virginia Republicans seeking to challenge 11th District Rep. Gerry Connolly have signed a pledge vowing to repeal the federal health care overhaul, further cementing the nearly $1 trillion initiative as the central issue in the June primary.
Both candidates already had denounced the legislation, which Connolly backed. Pat Herrity, a Fairfax County supervisor, labeled the Democratic incumbent "Gerry Pelosi" and announced he would "work tirelessly to repeal this bill." Keith Fimian, a businessman who ran against Connolly in 2008, charged the changes would "devastate the best health care system in the world."

But putting their names on a repeal pledge represents an irreversible promise to conservatives -- and other opponents of the health care overhaul -- who will decide the GOP nominee. And it signals that both Herrity and Fimian are putting great stock in public unease over remaking the nation's health care system.

"The two biggest problems we have are out-of-control spending and our failure to create jobs and get the economy back on track," Herrity said. "And this bill makes those two problems worse, and adds a whole new one in terms of threatening our quality of health care."

Read more at the Washington Examiner:

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Supreme Court may weigh coverage mandate

Health care reform now in court's hands

The same Supreme Court justices whom President Obama blasted during his State of the Union address this year may ultimately decide the fate of his crowning achievement as more than a dozen states have called on the courts to strike down the health insurance mandate of Democrats' health care overhaul - a move that would threaten the entire law.

Two major constitutional challenges have been levied against the new law, one by the state of Virginia, which enacted a law exempting its citizens from the federal health insurance mandate, and another by Florida and 12 other states. Legal scholars are divided on the merits of the cases, and even Congress - through its research service and its budget scorekeeper - has said it's an open question whether the provision could pass constitutional muster.

At issue is the scope of the federal government's power over states and individuals. Critics of the law say the requirement that all Americans buy insurance or pay a fine, if allowed, would mean that Congress has virtually boundless authority to compel actions. Proponents argue that legal precedents support an expansive reading of the legislative branch's license to regulate such activity.

"This is one of the most consequential lawsuits in our generation," said Baker Hostetler lawyer David B. Rivkin Jr., who is serving as outside counsel to the 13 states that have filed suit. "The fact you have so many different state attorneys general, Republicans and Democrats, from a variety of states coming together to do this just underscores how strongly they feel that the act infringes core constitutional interests of their respective states."

The mandate, which doesn't take effect until 2014, is central to Democrats' goal of insuring about 32 million more Americans. The law would offer tax credits to low-income individuals and allow young adults to remain on their parents' policies longer.

Both of the state lawsuits challenge the federal government's authority under the Commerce Clause, which grants Congress the power to regulate commerce among the states. The Florida case also cites a violation of the 10th Amendment, which reserves those powers not spelled out under the federal government in the Constitution to the state governments, and argues that the health care law's expansion of state Medicaid programs threatens state sovereignty.

Among the arguments against the law is that because it does not allow for purchasing insurance across state lines - the insurance exchanges are state-based - the buying of health insurance does not constitute interstate commerce. In addition, the plaintiffs say, not purchasing health insurance does not constitute an economic activity.

"Thus far in our history, it has never been held that the Commerce Clause, even when aided by the Necessary and Proper Clause, can be used to require citizens to buy goods or services," Virginia Attorney General Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II argues in his state's lawsuit. "To depart from that history to permit the national government to require the purchase of goods or services would ... create powers indistinguishable from a general police power in total derogation of our constitutional scheme of enumerated powers."

While a requirement to buy health insurance might be new, some legal analysts say, Congress can in fact define an economic activity as something that results from not taking an action.

"The 1964 Civil Rights Act prohibits hotels and restaurants from discriminating based on race and thus prohibits inactivity," said Erwin Chemerinsky, dean of the University of California Irvine School of Law, noting that law relied upon the Commerce Clause. "The Supreme Court has said that Congress can regulate economic activity that has a substantial effect on interstate commerce. Buying or refusing to buy insurance is economic activity. The effect on the economy is enormous."

More here.

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Monday, March 29, 2010

Video From Searchlight

This is the opposition folks. This is what they do. Do not underestimate them.

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Thomas Sowell

Opinion in Brief

"The corrupt manner in which this massive legislation was rammed through Congress, without any of the committee hearings or extended debates that most landmark legislation has had, has provided a roadmap for pushing through more such sweeping legislation in utter defiance of what the public wants.

Too many critics of the Obama administration have assumed that its arrogant disregard of the voting public will spell political suicide for Congressional Democrats and for the President himself. But that is far from certain.

True, President Obama's approval numbers in the polls have fallen below 50 percent, and that of Congress is down around 10 percent. But nobody votes for Congress as a whole, and the President will not be on the ballot until 2012.

They say that, in politics, overnight is a lifetime. Just last month, it was said that the election of Scott Brown to the Senate from Massachusetts doomed the health care bill. Now some of the same people are saying that passing the health care bill will doom the administration and the Democrats' control of Congress. As an old song said, 'It ain't necessarily so.'"

--economist Thomas Sowell

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Charles Krauthammer

The Last Word

"As the night follows the day, the VAT cometh. With the passage of Obamacare, creating a vast new middle-class entitlement, a national sales tax of the kind near-universal in Europe is inevitable.

... As Obama has repeatedly insisted, the real money is in health care costs -- which are now locked in place by the new Obamacare mandates. That's where the value-added tax comes in. For the politician, it has the virtue of expediency: People are used to sales taxes, and this one produces a river of revenue.

Every 1 percent of VAT would yield up to $1 trillion a decade (depending on what you exclude -- if you exempt food, for example, the yield would be more like $900 billion). It's the ultimate cash cow.

Obama will need it. By introducing universal health care, he has pulled off the largest expansion of the welfare state in four decades. And the most expensive.

Which is why all of the European Union has the VAT. Huge VATs. Germany: 19 percent. France and Italy: 20 percent. Most of Scandinavia: 25 percent. American liberals have long complained that ours is the only advanced industrial country without universal health care. Well, now we shall have it. And as we approach European levels of entitlements, we will need European levels of taxation."

--columnist Charles Krauthammer

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More Money Out Of Your Check

Under The Radar: New Paycheck Deductions Under ObamaCare

Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama told the American people that they will learn what is in the health care bill once it is passed. For once, they're right.

Hidden in the fine print of the health care bill is yet another entitlement program that is being foisted on already overburdened American workers. The program purports to offer long term care, and hidden in the fine print is a new government right to automatically deduct $146.00 to $240.00 a month from the paychecks of unsuspecting workers.

If you’re one of the lucky few that still gets a paycheck, be advised that your employer is going to automatically enroll you in this latest money grab by the government. Of course, you have the right to opt-out. Once you find out about it.

One can only hope that the opt-out procedure won’t be as complicated as the opt-out provision for union membership. If it is, you could be paying this monthly donation for months, or even years, until your opt-out application is perfected and processed.

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I think its the hair.

UPDATE: Technical difficulties. Picture not loading.
Eerie, isn't it?

Did you watch him expose Obama for the scam artist that he is at the "health care summit?

Well, apparently, some people like the idea of a President Ryan.

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Tonight on Blogtalk Radio

Humble Infidels' Blogtalk Radio


Uncle Jimbo from, Ryan Pitts and Mike Denton (who were in the battle) will be the guests as well as Tankerbabe "From Cow Pastures to Kosovo".

The Battle of Wanat is the topic; Ryan and Mike were there and will tell their story of the battle.

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DCExaminer Editorial Highlights


Obama shows the love to his union bosses

Examiner Editorial
"Obama's hope is that, with Becker calling the shots for the pro-labor NLRB majority, the board will find a way to circumvent Congress and throttle workers' right to secret ballots."

Obama's perverse foreign policy

Examiner's Sunday Editorial
"American presidents are often accused of being opaque or inconsistent in foreign affairs, but President Obama may be the first to be downright perverse, antagonizing our strongest allies, while trying to appease our most dangerous adversaries."

Stuffing union coffers with taxpayer cash

Mark Hemingway, Examiner Columnist
"Despite representing just more than 7 percent of the private labor force (and falling), union political influence today is stronger than at any time since LBJ won passage by the House of Representatives of repeal of the Taft-Hartley Right to Work law, but fell just short in the U.S. Senate."

2010 could be the Black Swan year in politics

Hugh Hewitt, Examiner Columnist
"What if new media transform legions of new activists into committed, effective political operatives, the sort who are willing to dig deep into their pockets to fund and into their time to organize for Republican candidates?"

A deepening crisis between U.S., Israel

John R. Bolton, OpEd Contributor
"The idea that Israel's recalcitrance, personified by pugnacious Bibi Netanyahu, is the central obstacle to peace is exactly backward, like looking through the wrong end of a telescope."

Romneycare shows need to repeal Obamacare

Timothy P. Cahill, OpEd Contributor
"There can no longer be any doubt that RomneyCare was the model for ObamaCare. That fact should be of grave concern to every American."

On the government plantation forever?

Star Parker, Examiner Columnist
"If you want to know where it all leads, look at our inner cities that were long ago taken over by government compassion. This is our future, my fellow Americans."

Obama's U.S. is unprepared for catastrophe, domestic or foreign

James Jay Carafano, Examiner Columnist
"This White House refuses to fund national security adequately. To pay for operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, Gates mortgaged the military's future capabilities -- including homeland defense."

Somebody should be in charge of the prom

Gregory Kane, Examiner Columnist
"First, who is in charge? Is it the adults, or youngsters like McMillen and Taylor? Because I'd rather have adults who are occasionally wrong in charge as opposed to youngsters who are only occasionally right."

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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Your Laugh For Today

Be prepared to spend some time here.

This is funny. Wierd but funny. Anyone with a dog should do this at home so we have enough empirical data to justify our findings. Post it on youtube or let us know and we'll hook you up.

My theory is: it sounds like (in the same frequency range) as a siren, but they react before that section. The oboe riff seems to spark a reaction, (but it has the same effect on me.)

Here's a sample. There are probably 50 to 60 more available at the link in the first line.

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DCExaminer Morrning Email Blast

Apparently, Henry "Nostrils" Waxman doesn't appreciate someone taking a closer look at this steaming pile of dog excrement. If this doesn't offend your sense of freedom and fairness, you need to move to some other country where politicians are free to bitchslap private companies when they question their government; like Venezuala. If I worked for any of these companies in an executive position, I'd respectfully and firmly advise Nostrils to have winged intercourse with a round mobile pastry.

Byron York - Democrats threaten companies hit hard by health care bill

Rep. Henry Waxman, chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, has summoned some of the nation's top executives to Capitol Hill to defend their assessment that the new national health care reform law will cost their companies hundreds of millions of dollars in health insurance expenses. Waxman is also demanding that the executives give lawmakers internal company documents related to health care finances -- a move one committee Republicans describes as "an attempt to intimidate and silence opponents of the Democrats' flawed health care reform legislation."

On Thursday and Friday, the companies -- so far, they include AT&T, Verizon, Caterpillar, Deere, Valero Energy, AK Steel and 3M -- said a tax provision in the new health care law will make it far more expensive to provide prescription drug coverage to their retired employees.

Now, both retirees and current employees of those companies are wondering whether the new law could mean reduced or canceled benefits for them in the future.

The news is an embarrassment for Democrats. As President Obama and Congressional leaders tout the purported benefits of the new health care law, some of the nation's biggest companies are saying it will mean higher costs and fewer benefits -- not exactly what Democrats want to hear in the days after their historic victory.

So Waxman has ordered the executives to explain themselves at an April 21 hearing before the Energy and Commerce Committee's investigative subcommittee. That subcommittee just happens to be chaired by Rep. Bart Stupak

Waxman's demands for documents are far-reaching. "To assist the Committee with its preparation for the hearing," he wrote to Stephenson, "we request that you provide the following documents from January 1, 2009, through the present:

(1) any analyses related to the projected impact of health care reform on AT&T; and

(2) any documents, including e-mail messages, sent to or prepared or reviewed by senior company officials related to the projected impact of health care reform on AT&T. We also request an explanation of the accounting methods used by AT&T since 2003 to estimate the financial impact on your company of the 28 percent subsidy for retiree drug coverage and its deductibility or nondeductibility, including the accounting methods used in preparing the cost impact statement released by AT&T this week.

Michael Barone - Obama slights our friends, kowtows to our enemies
Barack Obama's decision to postpone his trip to Indonesia and Australia -- to a democracy with the world's largest Muslim population and to the only nation that has fought alongside us in all the wars of the last century -- is of a piece with his foreign policy generally: Attack America's friends and kowtow to our enemies.

Timothy P. Carney - Why pot growers favor pot prohibition
If California legalizes marijuana, they say, it will drive down the price of their crop and damage not just their livelihoods but the entire economy along the state's rugged northern coast

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Andrew Briebart On Searchlight Rally

The bus was egged as they arrived in Searchlight and SEIU goons were positioned with signs directing rally attendees in the wrong direction.

Remember who you are dealing with as we move into the summer election season. They will stoop to any action to make you look bad or transfer blame. Everyine should have a video camera with good sound capabilities.

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Saturday, March 27, 2010

From Their Lips....

Demo-gogues on ObamaCare

"If you're making over $200,000 a year, you're going to pay slightly more in taxes. It's the cost, I think, of having the kind of America that we want to have." --Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), who by "we" means "congressional Democrats"

"Well, the drug companies will have their profits reduced by close to $90 billion over the lifetime of this bill. That's part of the strategy moving forward." --job-killing, innovation-crushing Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius There goes the incentive for R&D.

"The harsh fact of the matter is when you're going to pass legislation that will cover 300 American people in different ways it takes a long time to do the necessary administrative steps that have to be taken to put the legislation together to control the people." --Rep. John Dingell (D-MI) caught on tape letting the Freudian goal of ObamaCare slip

"When the deal goes down, uhh, this talk about uhh, rules, we make them up, as we go along..." -- Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-FL), a former federal judge impeached for corruption and perjury, thus, in the small minds of rule-of-men-types, qualifying him to serve as a representative and member of the House Rules Committee, on the sausage factory recipe used to pass ObamaCare.

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Happy Now?


Things About the Left You Need To Know

Do not underestimate them. Expect the absolute worst behavior imaginable, and then go further. They only care about winning. All else is merely the means to an end, and everything is justifiable in their minds.

EDITORIAL: Dems play the terror card
Claims of intimidation meant to distract from falling polls
To hear Mr. Clyburn talk, you'd think the Capitol had been bombed - like President Obama's spiritual mentor Bill Ayers and the Weather Underground did in 1971 or the communist Revolutionary Fighting Group did in 1983. We don't recall Republicans placing the blame on Democrats for those bona fide terror attacks committed by the Democrats' ideological cousins. For the party's leaders to make such insinuations now rings hollow.

Mr. Clyburn now wants to tie any potential future violence directly to the Republican leadership. Demonstrators "get their signals" from the Republicans, he said, leaving the implication that anything that might happen is at best condoned by, and at worst ordered by, the GOP.

But Mr. Clyburn is the one sending the signal, whether he knows it or not. Any leftist thug is now free to toss a brick through a Democratic congressional district office window secure in the knowledge that the act of vandalism will be blamed automatically on Tea Partiers or Republicans.

This victimization sideshow is meant to hide the fact that Democrats are pursuing policies that the American people oppose, and they are beginning to face a political price. A CBS News poll released Wednesday showed that 62 percent of Americans want Republicans to continue to challenge Obamacare. Other polls show congressional approval ratings at record lows. We suppose the people who were polled are aiding and abetting terrorism too, by Democrats' standards.

We did not see either Mr. Hoyer or Mr. Clyburn hold a press conference last summer when thugs from the Service Employees International Union were beating demonstrators at town meetings or when they used physical intimidation tactics and made threats of violence against demonstrators on the Mall on March 21. Silence gives consent, indeed.

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The Next Takeover of the American Economy

Socialism on Parade: Its easy to follow when you see it happening. I wonder which Article of the Constitution they'll invent to justify telling you how much you can earn or how much your time is worth. Stop this crap now, folks, or it will be too late and the next paycheck they confiscate will be yours, or your family's.

EDITORIAL: The left's next move: Salary caps

Administration expands reach into private-sector compensation

Emboldened by the passage of health care legislation, the Obama administration will set its sights on a new target - regulating how much money you can make.

Recipients of federal bailout money already face regulations designed to rein in "excessive" corporate salaries. Since the administration has proclaimed this first step a success, it is only a matter of time before it seeks broader control over private-sector compensation. The administration gave itself a pat on the back for a job well done after "only" 16 of 104 senior corporate executives quit when their salaries fell under the pay czar's knife. The administration takes this as indisputable proof that high salaries are not needed to keep executives in their jobs.

The evidence, however, is far from compelling. Most executives are not going to abandon their companies instantly, and the cuts only went into effect in the last few weeks of 2009. While the salary reductions were substantial - on average a 74 percent cut compared to 2008 levels - there is no way to know whether companies are promising to make up the losses to their executives in the future because they think the regulations will be lifted eventually.

Kenneth R. Feinberg, the special master for executive compensation, is a lawyer with no experience running a business. To him, losing 15 percent of company leaders might seem to be an acceptable loss, but it is a different matter to the operations suddenly deprived of management experience and talent. Those firms have a financial stake in the outcome of their decisions. When pay is cut, will the executives be as careful? Will they work as hard? Will they retire sooner?

Such questions need not trouble a government regulator like Mr. Feinberg, who now wants to go after the 25 highest earners at each of 416 companies to slash their salaries. That could affect more than 10,000 high-level corporate officers, and it represents a massive government intervention into the marketplace. The notion that the government is going to decide how much people can earn is shocking, and the damage to the economy will be incalculable.

After taking over General Motors and the entire health care industry, it must seem like a small move to begin micromanaging the internal decisions of another 416 companies. The administration still hasn't learned the lessons from the last century: Central planning does not work.

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Victory for America???

FoxNews is running a poll on healthcare.

Go tell 'em what you think.

Is Health Care Bill a Victory for America?
President Obama called the House passage of a health care reform bill a "victory for the American people." Do you agree?

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Love Your Enemy and Drive Them Nuts

How to Oppose ObamaCare
What critics of the president's health care plan can learn from Gandhi's methods of nonviolent resistance
President Obama is betting that come November the bruising, year-long battle that he has just dragged the country through will be a distant memory. But that profoundly underestimates the dismay of a large segment of the public that sees what he signed Tuesday as a fraudulent piece of legislation based on fraudulent thinking backed by fraudulent facts enacted through a fraudulent process. (Yes, Americans do care about "process," Mr. President. It's another name for representative government.)

It is hardly surprising then that Americans are feeling a growing panic as they watch their constitutional republic descend into a banana republic. President Obama is fond of quoting Mahatma Gandhi's line that "we should be the change we want to see." But Gandhi also said that "civil disobedience becomes a sacred duty when the state has become lawless and corrupt." Americans instinctively understand this, which is why pockets of resistance to ObamaCare are already emerging. The question is only whether they can be constructively harnessed into a grassroots, Gandhi-style civil disobedience movement powerful enough to undo this monstrosity.

Read the rest here.

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Life Imitates Art - Minority Report in Oregon?

Pre-Crime Policing
Allegedly “disgruntled” man has his guns seized, and “voluntarily” surrenders to two SWAT teams and dozens of police officers for a crime that hadn’t been committed

To hear them tell it, the five police agencies who apprehended 39-year-old Oregonian David Pyles early on the morning of March 8 thwarted another lone wolf mass murderer. The police "were able to successfully take a potentially volatile male subject into protective custody for a mental evaluation," announced a press
put out by the Medford, Oregon, police department. The subject had recently been placed on administrative leave from his job, was "very disgruntled," and had recently purchased several firearms. "Local Law Enforcement agencies were extremely concerned that the subject was planning retaliation against his employers," the release said. Fortunately, Pyles "voluntarily" turned himself over to police custody, and the legally purchased firearms "were seized for safekeeping."

This voluntary exchange involved two SWAT teams, police officers from Medford and nearby Roseburg, sheriff's deputies from Jackson and Douglas counties, and the Oregon State Police. Oregon State Police Sgt. Jeff Proulx explained to South Oregon's Mail Tribune why the operation was such a success: "Instead of being reactive, we took a proactive approach."

There's just one problem: David Pyles hadn't committed any crime, nor was he suspected of having committed one. The police never obtained a warrant for either search or arrest. They never consulted with a judge or mental health professional before sending out the military-style tactical teams to take Pyle in.


If what happened to Pyles is legal, in Oregon or elsewhere, we need to take a second look at the civil commitment power. Even setting aside the SWAT team overkill in Medford, there's something awfully discomfiting about granting government authorities the power to yank someone from their home and drag them in for a mental health evaluation based on a series of actions that were perfectly legal, especially with no prior oversight from a judge, or guidance from a psychiatrist.

"The idea that Pyles turned himself in voluntarily is ridiculous," says Starrett, the gun rights activist. "There's nothing voluntary about waking up to a SWAT team outside your home, then having a police negotiator call and suggest you surrender. They had no arrest warrant. But Pyles only had one option. If he didn't come out on his own, they were going to come in to get him."

Read the rest at Reason.

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Friday, March 26, 2010

Change We Can Believe In


via Barking Moon Bats Early Warning System, LC Aggie Smith at Hookers & Booze, via Ed, via good ol’ CmBlake6 I think. From Logistics Monster, who gave it the Marie Antoinette caption but found the picture at Dale Toon’s Out of Order blog. Help spread the image.

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

In Case You Still Wondered How Zero Feels About Israel

This should pretty much establish Dr Utopia's view of Israel as an ally. The title is all wrong though, IMAO. The Prime Minister has no reason to feel humiliated; it is we who should be embarassed for the shabby treatment. I personally apologize to the people of Israel and the Prime Minister for the disrespectful behavior of this Nation's President.

Binyamin Netanyahu humiliated after Barack Obama 'dumped him for dinner

For a head of state to visit the White House and not pose for photographers is rare. For a key ally to be left to his own devices while the President withdraws to have dinner in private was, until this week, unheard of.

Yet that is how Binyamin Netanyahu was treated by President Obama on Tuesday night, according to Israeli reports on a trip seen in Jerusalem tonight as a disastrous humiliation.

After failing to extract a written promise of concessions on Jewish settlements, Mr Obama walked out of his meeting with Mr Netanyahu but invited him to stay at the White House, consult with advisors and “let me know if there is anything new”, a US congressman who spoke to the Prime Minister said today.

“It was awful,” the congressman said. One Israeli newspaper called the meeting “a hazing in stages”, poisoned by such mistrust that the Israeli delegation eventually left rather than risk being eavesdropped on a White House phone line. Another said that the Prime Minister had received “the treatment reserved for the President of Equatorial Guinea”.

Read the rest here

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Tea Party Leader Resigns Over Rand Paul's Pal Adam Kokesh

Tea Party Leader Resigns Over Rand Paul's Pal Adam Kokesh
There is no doubt in my mind that Ron Paul's libertarian movement is attempting to take over the Republican Party through co-opting the Tea Party movement. We've seen this here in Kentucky as a good chunk of our Tea Party leaders supported Bill Johnson, but Rand Paul's big money (77% of it coming from out of state people in this "liberty movement") gave him credibility with the media and made him able to bill himself as "the Tea Party candidate" here. It was all a hoax, of course, and now Kentucky's grassroots-selected candidate has been disenfranchised.

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Appropriate and Inappropriate Violence

I find it very interesting that most commenters at Erick's post, If King George Will Not Listen, at RedSTate, are decrying the INAPPROPRIATE use of violence, but, not the idea of violence itself.

Defense may be violent. That is not an inappropriate type of violence.

Violence is only a tool.

Not all of the violence has been committed by leftists. Google "Window War" and you will come to the 3 Percenters. Some of them have, allegedly, broken windows of Democratic offices. However, they do not support the GOP either, seeing them as just as bad, but in a different way. This is an example of inappropriate violence, as are threats and any types of physical assault. Violence or advocating violence to overthrow our lawful government is also inappropriate. Nor is any of this, speaking strategically or tactically, useful. At all.

The big question is "when is violence appropriate or useful?". THAT is the dangerous elephant in the room. I do not know the answer except that those conditions have not been met.

The Left knows how to set up false crises. The Left knows EXACTLY what is going through the minds of those that are thinking about force. THEY have been there. They know what the Tea Parties are thinking. THEY have been there. The Left is going to use any crisis, real or false, to discredit the Tea Parties and like minded. They even have a play book in Saul Alinsky. They have the lemming like press. They are willing to lie, cheat, and steal to falsely accuse. Ends justify the means.

If the Tea Party protests must escalate, we must be NON-Violent. It is not a good idea to only WOUND a tiger. And the progressive movement is a tiger, but one still constrained by the chains of public opinion, law, and yes, the threat of pushing certain elements so far that the left would regret it. We must use their weapons against them. Ghandi and MLK did it the right way. We must turn public opinion against them. This is still a nation of decent people. The anger needs to be banked, not stoked. Stoked fires burn brilliantly and hotly, but are quick and are a threat. Banked fires last a long time. Anger should be used as a tool, not a weapon. Use it to motivate, not harm. Every fighter knows that the first fighter to get angry tends to lose.

We must not allow the Left and their useful idiots to use our anger as a weapon against us.

cross posted at RedState

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It Was Probably Someone Just Cleaning His Weapon

Rep. Eric Cantor's Richmond Office Shot At
BY Mary Katharine Ham

House GOP leadership No. 2 Rep. Eric Cantor's home office in Richmond was shot at Wednesday night. It was his campaign office, not his congressional office:

The Department of Homeland Security is involved in the Cantor case because he is a member of the House leadership.

Fox News has also obtained a threatening message left Friday on the voicemail of Rep. Jean Schmidt, R-Ohio.

I would enjoy an in-depth media report on why these threats against GOPers are entirely irrelevant, but I'm guessing they'll just be politely ignored. Either that or the violence verification and due diligence we've not seen much of when it relates to Tea Party accusations will rev up to stipulate carefully that this isn't necessarily a politically motivated attack, which it very well may not be.
Will these violent Tea Partiers stop at nothing?

Update: Richmond Police confirm to CNN that the office was shot at over the weekend and they're investigating. There's obviously a discrepancy on the date of the incident, so I'll update when I hear a solid one.

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This Site Joins Rep Mike Pence

We condemn the use of violence and intimidation to make political statements. We also condemn the smearing of honest American citizens exercising their First Amendment rights of speech and assembly.

Rep. Mike Pence puts it rather well when he says, "I strongly condemn bigotry, threats or vandalism. I also condemn the smearing of law-abiding citizens."

H/T The Hammer

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Coffins Do Not A Threat Convey

The Coffin on Carnahan's Lawn Was Part of Prayer Vigil, Not Threat

BY Mary Katharine Ham

I read an account from the Politico last night of Tea Party protesters allegedly placing a coffin outside the St. Louis home of Rep. Russ Carnahan.

It occured to me, as it would to any honest person not interested in painting anti-Obamacare protesters as irretrievably violent, that the coffin in question was likely a prop in a political protest. The Left used countless flag-draped coffins for eight years to symbolize the war dead in protests. As recently as this week, the use of such coffins was reported as "Symbolic coffins mark anti-war protests in Washington."

One would think if coffins qualify as threats, not political theater, the press would have been interested in the lawn full of death threats anti-war protesters delivered to the White House last weekend, according to this photo.

Lets not forget the flag-draped coffins in front of Walter Reed Army Medical Center that Code Pink and SEIU says was probably just people who wanted to make trouble for their "peace vigil".

Now we wait with baited breath for the VLWM to pick up on The Hammer's research and issue story after story correcting their original lack of journalistic due diligence.

H'mm, are those crickets I hear?

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