More on that disgusting, evil, mean, and hurtful bake sale at Cal Berkeley. Look, it caused all of those poor students to faint from a mass attack of the diversity vapors. Those left standing, (see the ones with the signs?) had to be taken to the hospital to have their outrage levels checked.
From Heather McDonald:
And like all such previous bake sales, it triggered a storm of ludicrously clueless outrage....
Gibor Basri, Berkeley’s vice chancellor for equity and diversity, could have served a valuable role here by pointing out that the bake sale was obviously a parody of racial and gender preferences, not a criticism of students themselves. Whatever one thinks about the issue of preferences, he might have said, such political theater belongs to Berkeley’s once-revered tradition of free speech. Instead, Basri chose to stoke the melodramatic self-pity of today’s college students. “A lot of students, especially students of color, read [the bake sale] as placing a higher value on white students,” Basri told the New York Times. Basri, in other words, obeyed the ironclad script for all such minor perturbations in the otherwise unbroken reign of campus political correctness. That script requires that the massive campus-diversity bureaucracy treat the delusional claims of hyperventilating students with utter seriousness. Students in the ever-expanding roster of official campus victim groups flatter themselves that by attending what is in fact the most caring, protective, and opportunity-rich institution in the history of the world, they are braving unspeakable threats to their ego and even to their physical safety.
Well, what do you expect from a guy named Gibor?
My favorite character from the piece is the female student who was outraged because "queers" were left off the Young Republicans satirical pricing scheme. How dare they. Here she is making her case...
Dan Henninger suggest giving Herman Cain a serious look for president.
When Mr. Cain talked to the Journal's editors, the most startling thing he said, and which he's been repeating lately, was that he could win one-third of the black vote. Seeing Herman Cain make his case to black audiences would be interesting, period. Years ago, describing his chauffeur father's influence on him in Atlanta, Mr. Cain said: "My father gave me a sense of pride. He was the best damn chauffeur. He knew it, and everybody else knew it." Here's guessing he'd get more of this vote than past GOP candidates.
I always thought the first black president would be a conservative. I was wrong. Maybe the second black president will be. I'd be proud to vote for him and so would millions of other white people after listening to his prescription for getting the country back on the right track.
And you've got love this:
In 1986, Pillsbury sent the 41-year-old Mr. Cain to turn around their Godfather's Pizza business, headquartered in Omaha. The Herman Cain who arrived there April 1 sounded like the same man who roused voters last Sunday in Florida: "I'm Herman Cain and this ain't no April Fool's joke. We are not dead. Our objective is to prove to Pillsbury and everyone else that we will survive."
If come next April, Mr. Cain is still in the hunt for the GOP nomination, it won't be no joke. If he can school Bill Clinton during his effort to sell his wife's failed healthcare bill (as he does below), just imagine what he'd do to Obama.
He got unemployment and a job counselor. He went on CareerLink, worked on his resume and sent it out to dozens of places. Wal-Mart was the first (and only) responder. He starts back to work in two or three weeks.
“It’s been tight, but we’ve always been frugal,” he said. “No car loans, no credit card bills. We keep it simple.”
He thanks his mother for raising him like that.
“We grew up hard. I was raised on ‘nothing’s ever promised.’ If I can’t pay cash right then and there, I leave it there until I can afford it.”
What debt-ridden America could learn from Robert Strange is a lot.
At Berkeley, College Republicans satirize affirmative action and demonstrate the perniciousness of racial double standards with a bake sale charging different prices based on ethnicity and gender. It's an oldie but a goodie.
The response from campus liberals, progressives, and left-wing radicals was, shall we say, predictable. They were outraged. Or pretended to be. Chants against racism and sexism came forth. So did anonymous and empty threats of violence. The local media showed up to cover the event and got plenty of footage.
All and all a great success on the part of young Republicans to get their message out.
And yet, the New York Times runs this headline: "A 'Diversity Bake Sale' Backfires on Campus" It didn't "backfire" at all. The event may have offended some people but that was the point. It got the other side to reveal the stupidity and racialism of their own position.
Energy analyst John Kemp explains why Sunoco and Conoco have had such a hard time turning profit at their Philadelphia, Marcus Hook and Trainer refineries. It has to do with the old plants' inability to handle any product other than expensive "sweet, light" crude.
Because of the expense of buying it, profit margins are much thinner. In the midwest and elsewhere, plants can handle heavier crude that requires more refining. Plus the oil they get, from Canada and elsewhere is less easy and more expensive to export.
The best way to understand why Marcus Hook and Philadelphia are such terrible assets to own is to look at a snapshot of the crudes they were processing in June (the latest month for which detailed data is available) compared with other refiners across the country.
In June, the United States imported 285.9 million barrels of crude oil. The weighted average sulphur content was 1.71 percent while the average API gravity was 28.34 degrees, according to company-level data published by the Energy Information Administration, the statistical arm of the U.S. Department of Energy. Given the scarcity of high quality crudes with low sulphur content and high yield of premium products, as a result of the war in Libya and North Sea maintenance, most refiners focused on acquiring the cheapest and sourest oils their refineries could handle to maximise margins.
But struggling Sunoco imported 4.95 million barrels for Marcus Hook with an average sulphur content of just 0.17 percent and API of 36.8 degrees, much sweeter and lighter crude than other refiners. It also brought in 8.96 million barrels for Philadelphia with an average sulphur content of 0.18 percent and an API of 33.42. Unable to reduce the sulphur content or crack heavier molecules more aggressively to wring more valuable light products from its crude, Sunoco's buyers were forced to chase some of the most expensive crudes in the market.
There are other reasons but those seem to be the most salient.
Interestingly, Joel Kotkin writes in Forbes that when it comes to where America's best jobs will be coming from in the future, they're in oil, gas and coal. When it comes to job growth over the last five years...
... the biggest growth by far has taken place in the mining, oil and natural gas industries, where jobs expanded by 60%, creating a total of 500,000 new jobs. While that number is not as large as those generated by health care or education, the quality of these jobs are far higher. The average job in conventional energy pays about $100,000 annually — about $20,000 more than finance or professional services pay. The wages are more than twice as high as those in either health or education.
Nor is this expansion showing signs of slowing down. Contrary to expectations pushed by “peak oil” enthusiasts, overall U.S. oil production has grown by 10% since 2008; the import share of U.S. oil consumption has dropped to 47% from 60% in 2005. Over the next year, according to one recent industry-funded study, oil and gas could create an additional 1.5 million new jobs.
So how ironic is it that one of America's greatest growth industries is failing in our own back yard? Very. But it helps to know why.
GOP Presidential Candidate Herman Cain wins the Florida straw poll. Dorothy Rabinowitz quotes my friend (and hers) Wallingford's Alan Kors and his amusing observation:
"So, the 'Tea Party racists' in a Republican straw poll chose the self-made black Herman Cain -- mathematician and successful businessman -- son of a cleaning woman and a janitor, as their choice of nominee for the presidency of the United States. Well! What a bigoted group, what a caste society!"
Rabinowitz credits Cain's "unfailing capacity to speak as though from a core of fire deep inside him. An irresistible strength -- as is the mordant humor he brings to the battle."
The oil company has announced it will be shutting down its Trainer refining facility and looking for a buyer.
According to Bloomberg:
Conoco said it will also sell pipelines and terminals associated with the Trainer refinery. The company cited weak demand, pressure from imports and the cost of meeting regulatory requirements for its decision to immediately idle the refinery.
“Demand is going down, there is tremendous underutilization and excess capacity inside and outside the United States,” Chirichella said. “There won’t be a gasoline shortage but I would expect more stuff from Europe, from the Caribbean, the Midwest and the Gulf Coast.”
Ugh. This isn't good. It means fewer jobs for local workers and, in the long run, higher gasoline prices for the rest of us.
Also known as Gaspariville, Lower Chi was described by its neighbors as having “too much crime and drugs, congested, dirty, too urban, unkempt, noisy, a lot of poverty and Section 8 housing, economically depressed, dirty oil refineries nearby, poor housing, a lot of people on welfare, and as a ghetto.”
So last night, Upper Chi political leaders went down to a public meeting in Lower Chi and abjectly apologized for their residents' opinions.
Rocco Gaspari gracefully accepted the "We're Sorry" on behalf of his community.
“There was a mistake made and this is a lesson that everyone needs to learn,” Gaspari said. “It was a human error and that’s what we were taught, that when we make a mistake we have to own up to it. We know there were some things out of your control. Linwood, Marcus Hook, Trainer and Boothwyn should never have wedges put in between them. You being here tonight puts this thing to rest. I accept your apology and this is the end of it.”
As for bringing an end to the crime, drugs, and welfare, etc., they're working on it.
In March 2010, liberal columnist Peter Beinart argued that, for decades, Democratic politicians treated America's innate conservatism like a slumbering bear: If you make no sudden moves and talk quietly, you can get a lot done. But if you wake the bear, as Democrats did in the late 1960s and early '70s, the ursine silent majority will punish you.
But Obama promised to change that. He was tired of the timid, almost apologetic talk. He was going to be an FDR, or at least a Reagan for liberalism. He was going to "fundamentally transform" the country. And to those who counseled that Democrats can't govern that way, Obama and his followers responded with shouts of "Yes, we can!"
You might think it was those shouts that woke the bear, but that's not what happened. After all, Obama enjoyed stunning popularity when he entered the Oval Office.
No, it wasn't words but deeds that roused the beast. The poorly crafted, deeply partisan stimulus was like a sharp stick to the bear's belly. But it was "Obamacare" that ended the hibernation.
Joe "Fatal Vision" McGinniss inadvertently trashes his own book on Sarah Palin before it is released.
Begging for help from a well-known Palin-hater, McGinniss writes:
Jesse, if you can put me in touch with people who are willing and able to substantiate any of the above, now is the time to do so. Otherwise, I hope you won’t complain that there are no startling new revelations in my book. My publisher and I think it’s damning enough without airing the family’s dirty laundry, but because Sarah’s hypocrisy about her family is one of the things that galls me most, I’d like to be able to publish facts in regard to a) through f) above, but I emphasize facts. Not malicious speculation or third-hand rumors relayed by those who hold a grudge.
For any or all of those who’ve told you they’ll speak out, but not yet, now is the time. My book represents the last best chance to put the truth about Sarah in front of the American people in a documented, verifiable way. But I need facts that I can rely on. I didn’t live this long and work this hard over so many decades to wind up as AlaskaWTF between hard covers.
In the end, according to the reviews, McGinniss never did get the facts and went with the malicious speculation and third-hand rumors.
He must have needed the money awfully bad to have sacrificed what little reputation he had left as a writer. Sad, really.
Media Bias on Parade, Then Quantified and Analyzed
At Opinion Journal's Notable Quotable: Dilbert creator Scott Adams writing at dilbert.com, Aug. 30:
Is it my imagination, or has the liberal wing of the media's attacks on conservatives turned into a bunch of cheap gotchas involving nitpicked analogies and quotes taken out of context? Perhaps it has always been this way and I never noticed until this year. Or maybe I'm spending too much time reading The Huffington Post. Maybe you can help me sort this out.
Before I continue, I should note that my own views don't map closely to either the liberal or conservative camps. So I don't have a poodle in the fight. I'm just observing a trend.
Consider Rick Perry. He called Social Security a "Ponzi scheme." As analogies go, that's a good one. I believe I have used it myself. It's a colorful way of saying the math doesn't work well when the population of retired people greatly increases and the number of workers funding Social Security does not. Literally no one on Earth disagrees with the central point of Perry's analogy. But I keep seeing Perry's Ponzi scheme quote reported as if it were some sort of idiot misunderstanding or conspiracy theory or foreshadowing of evil. . . .
Consider Mitt Romney's quote in the context of taxes that corporations are people too. That quote was reported as if Romney is so out of touch with ordinary humans that he doesn't know the difference between an artificial legal structure and a living person. Only a robot could say such a thing! But of course his point is one that 100% of real humans agree with: Corporate profits flow into the pockets of employees and shareholders. I remember a time when a gaffe meant you were wrong. But apparently being 100% right isn't a defense if you're also a conservative.
Pretty good. But it's hard to believe that as keen an observer as Adams is, has never noticed the political bias of the mainstream media.
In a new book Left Turn, UCLA Prof. Tim Groseclose demonstrates how prevalent the liberal bias of the media is and how it tilts voting patterns left. Some 93 percent of the the Washington press corps voting for Obama. What's that tell you? Well, if ask a liberal they'll say it's because they're better-educated, wiser and more compassionate than the average citizen.
Despite the fact that readers and viewers distrust the media, it still has a strong effect on voters. According to Groseclose's analysis, it increased the national vote for Obama some 8 percentage points. How he arrives at that figure is quite interesting. Check it out.
Yesterday's Eagles game was a disaster. After failing to score a touchdown 1st and goal from the two on four tries, things looked ominous and they were. Bad defense. Bad offense and bad luck. Mike Vick broke his hand. Dog lovers cheered. Eagles fans wept. But the Birds have been 1-2 before and turned it around. Still, it doesn't bode well.
The radical right wing Tea Party controlled Republicans have a new plan to guarantee that Pres. Obama is a one term President. Just throw aside the twentieth century’s fair play in politics rules and revert to the nineteenth century’s parties in power stay in power however they must.
Please, not even Cliff Wilson believes that Dominic Pileggi is a member of the "radical right wing Tea Party." And his plan to split up the state's electoral votes by congressional district plus two for the popular vote, is well within the bounds of fair and reasonable proposals. Instead of winner-take-all, winner takes most.
Granted, next year such a system would disadvantage Barack Obama, given that Pennsylvania is slightly more likely remain a blue (Democratic) state, rather than turning red. But clearly, the change doesn't "guarantee" anything. As Ed Rendell pointed out, it's possible that the plan could backfire. The Republican could win the popular vote in the state and the Pileggi plan could cost him the 8 or 9 electoral votes it might take to send him to the White House.
To the extent that Pileggi is trying to gain an advantage for the GOP's candidate, the plan does that. But the Democrats have hardly been above passing laws that advantage their side. The Motor-Voter bill, made it easier to register mostly Democratic voters. It also invited more vote fraud into the system. And they oppose common-sense laws to uphold the integrity of the system - like Voter ID laws - because they believe it depresses turnout for their candidates.
Cliff goes on like a chicken running off, well, a cliff:
If these tea party radical right wing Republicans are successful we will likely see a President elected without a plurality of the popular vote. In the context of the polarized politics of today that will be the final nail in the coffin of the national government.
First of all, it is not "likely" the next president will be elected without a "plurality of the popular vote." It's possible but not likely.
As for such an eventuality being the "final nail in the coffin." Really, Cliff? The federal government will be dead and buried? It will no longer provide for the national defense, collect income taxes, pay social security checks, police the environment, patrol and the borders? My word!
As I said the Pileggi plan has liberals hyperventilating. Whether they actually believe their own hyperbole is another matter. My sense is, a lot of them do.
One last thing. In 2008, Obama won just 53 percent of the popular vote, but he was awarded 68 percent of the electoral votes. Isn't there something wrong with that picture? If more states start revamping how they award electoral votes, the incentive will grow to do away with the electoral college altogether and go to a straight popular vote system. Liberals claim to love that idea. This is one way to get there.
UPDATE: In Chester, a protest against the plan. Seven people showed up. Maybe we should have a threshold number before we cover political protests. How's 12 sound?
UPDATE: It would also help readers to know that the organizer of the protest - America Votes - is a left-wing outfit committed to liberal causes and opposes popular anti-vote fraud legislation like Voter ID laws.
Former Swarthmore resident Joe McGinnis gets bad reviews for his new book about Sarah Palin: Going Rogue Even the New York Times trashes it.
Writes Janet Maslin:
“The Rogue” reopens many knotty arguments about Ms. Palin’s public record, mostly the same ones that were hashed over when she became part of the 2008 presidential campaign. It cites the investigation that became known as Troopergate, the questions about her involvement with the Alaska Gasline Inducement Act (Mr. McGinniss covered this in a 2009 Portfolio article) and her possible commitment to such extreme theological ideas as dominionism, although here too “The Rogue” is too busy being nasty to be lucid. Mr. McGinniss suggests both that Ms. Palin is committed to stealth religious control of government, and that she is not sufficiently devout.
Steve Chapman has some advice for Barack Obama: Call it a day.
The vultures are starting to circle. Former White House spokesman Bill Burton said that unless Obama can rally the Democratic base, which is disillusioned with him, "it's going to be impossible for the president to win." Democratic consultant James Carville had one word of advice for Obama: "Panic."
But there is good news for the president. I checked the Constitution, and he is under no compulsion to run for re-election. He can scrap the campaign, bag the fundraising calls and never watch another Republican debate as long as he's willing to vacate the premises by Jan. 20, 2013.
What? And the let oceans continue to advance? Our planet relapse into sickness. Hope wither? Change die?
Nay, Mr. Chapman, our president knows how needed he is to battle the forces of evil. Despite, the many mistakes and failures of his administration, his vanity remains constant and indefatigable. What would America, what would the planet, do without him?
Golfers can still sign up for the outing to be held on Sept. 30, noon, at Edgmont Country Club for a very reasonable $125 per person. That includes golf, lunch, dinner and prizes. Dinner only, $40. Call Steve O'Connor at 610-328-9327 to register. Checks can be made out to Delaware County Special Olympics and sent to O'Connor at 964 Greenhouse Lane, Secane, Pa. 19018. Jake Spencer and his father plan to attend.)
The prosecution of school kids for using violent imagery in poems, stories, and video is out of control. It is also a violation of their First Amendment rights.
A recent example is the case brought against Zaidee Harrison, a Radnor High School student, who was charged with making terroristic threats, harassment and disorderly conduct, for reciting a not-very-good poem she'd written with her little brother to a friend's Facebook page.
The poem is about a crazed student shooting and setting fire to his school. It's a lame distillation of Natual Born Killers meets Carrie.
The poem was not written in school or even brought to her school. It was, according to Zaidee, written for her brother's "poem book" and sent to her friend for a second opinion. It was copied off the girl's Facebook by some busybody adult and sent to the RHS principal Mark Schellenger.
The over reaction started there. Schellenger had no reason to believe that Zaidee was an actual threat to act out this horror story in real life, any more than he could reasonably expect Quentin Tarentino to show up at his school and go on a killing spree. (But maybe a warrant for his arrest should be issued just in case.)
Schellenger knew or should have known that Harrison has no record of being a problem student with any penchent for violence. According to school records, teachers found her to be a pleasure to have in their classes.
Nevertheless, Schellenger called the cops who took it from there.
That no adults in the criminal justice system managed to recognize the studipity of this prosecution, not to mention the illegality of it, or worse, didn't have the guts to stand up and say they did, just goes to show how far common sense has been removed from the goal of school safety.
It is one thing to phone in a bomb threat that forces the evacuation of a school. It is quite another to write a poem from the perspective of a psychopath. It's done in popular films, books and art all the time.
The district justice in the case threw out the most serious charge, that of making terroristic threats, but held her on charges of harassment and disorderly conduct.
There must be a few school administrators, cops, prosecutors, or judges out there who would admit this is a dumb way to handle matters like these. It would be nice for a few of them to stand up and point out that the process "has no clothes." These sort of prosecutions should be brought to an end.
Will it take a civil rights lawsuit to help these "authorities" see the error of their ways? Maybe.
On Sept. 8, 2009, Marine Sgt. Dakota Meyer, then a 21-year-old corporal, defied the orders of his superiors while on duty in a remote province in eastern Afghanistan, raced into a “killing zone” and helped rescue 36 U.S. and Afghan troops.
When President Obama recently called to tell Meyer he would be awarded the Medal of Honor, the military’s highest honor, Meyer didn’t take the call. Meyer, now 23, was working a new job in construction and asked the president to call him back another time.
“He told me, ‘If I don’t work, I don’t get paid,’ ” Obama recounted with a chuckle Thursday afternoon at the medal ceremony for Meyer in the gilded East Room of the White House.
When invited to the White House, Meyer said he would like to have a beer with his Commander in Chief. The President was happy to accommodate him. No doubt, he was honored to do so.
The above photo was released by the White House. A few critics complained that it was a photo-op for the president. Big deal. It's a nice picture.
Haven't confirmed it yet, but Newtown Township Supervisor George Wood called to tell me that the theft charges against him and George Clement and Marie Richards have all been thrown out by Springfield District Justice Anthony Scanlon.
Wood had been charged with misappropriating a lousy $21 to the township's FedEx account for personal use, Richards, $32 and Clement $90.76.
Scanlon dimissed the charges against all three of them, Wood said.
I asked him if he had any comment about it.
"Nope," he said. "I'm still hesitant to say anything. Only that it's bittersweet... It's sweet that it's over, but bitter that it happened."
Charges against township secretary Gwen Toyzer for allegedly stealing more than $1,000 from the account, have yet to be resolved.
Dear Mr. Spencer; My name is Mary Cellucci and I was a constituent of Former Congressman Joe Sestak. I know of his commitment and his intelligence, integrity, and Work ethic, not to mention his 31 years experience in the Navy. His position of director of the Navys anti-terrorsm unit. If he is (sic) qualified, I don’t know who is. He would get my vote.
Mary, I agree that Joe is smart, honest and works hard but he wouldn't ever think of NOT mentioning his 31 years in the Navy. He's a government man, who obviously believes in the power of government to do good. I prefer a more smaller, less busy and more humble government.
And so if he ever runs for president, you can cancel out my vote. Cheers, Gil
Hmmm. You might take a look at N.Y. 9's outcome. Sestak voted entirely with Obama. Thanks to him we have another trillion in debti with Obamacare not to mention the trillion in failed stimulus. Sestak would be wonderful.. for Russia! All you Marxists are toast! We're going to take this country back and you will never see the Marxists in power again! This country has learned a very hard lesson! Unfortunately the Marxist main stream press like you hasn't! No one takes you seriously any more! Shame on you for not being an American!
Joann, You should read the column again. Maybe you'll realize it's you who are taking it too "seriously." Cheers
I have to laugh at your nonsense article today. Because you'll look real silly when Brown gets trounced in Mass. and Obama wins again. How come you never say anything about the Tea Baggers and Republicans voting NO to everything? You do understand this will be the same way if the Republicans get in the White House too. Why don't you read what Ronald Reagan's daughter had to say about the Tea Baggers and your Party. She said her father wouldn't be associated with anybody that would cheer for 22 people to be put to death or scream let them die as the Perry supporters have done recently in their debates. Your party has become such a joke. By the way, Congress has a lower approval rating than the President. Boehner has a nice tan these days. What jobs have the Republicans created over the passed 6 months? I'm sure we'll just get more lies from your squad because that's all we get these days. Let's remember how we got into this mess in the first place. How can a President accomplish anything when the answer will always be NO. The Southern Tea Baggers are making this country look stupid but then again don't the Southerns always do that? Bibles and Guns for Everyones!!!!
Thanks, Pat Barker
Pat, For a year and a half the President had huge Democratic majorities in both the House and Senate. What did he accomplish? A healthcare bill that a majority of the people in this country hate and one that helped elect Scott Brown to replace Ted Kennedy. Joe voted with the president on every major piece of legislation he supported from early 2009 to the fall of 2010 and what did it get him? A second place finish in the Pennsylvania senate race. Maybe he'll have better luck next time. Cheers
Edythe Maa (a.k.a. Jade Vixen) has been unlucky with the men in her life. Some of the men have been even unluckier. The 29-year-old dominatrix and former Penn grad student, is being questioned in the death of Peter Stelzenmuller, 49, who she found in the attic of the Drexel Hill home they shared together in a scuba suit, dead. The only thing the cops know for sure is that he didn't drown.
A couple of years ago, Maa was abducted by an obsessed client. The man killed Maa's then boyfriend and, after being surrounded by police, shot himself.
In the Stelzemuller case, Maa told police she cut him out of the wet suit and put a pair of shorts on him before detectives arrived. Police hope to question her further about the case, but she's out of town. On business or pleasure? Police didn't say.
My print column, in which I urge Joe Sestak to run for president, is up. Of course, it would infuriate the Democratic establishment if he did run. They'll call him selfish, narcissistic and monomaniacal. They'll make fun of him. They'll compare him to this guy...
But Joe's never been afraid of his fellow Democrats, which is what makes him interesting.
UPDATE: Just found this bit of Democratic opposition research that will be used against Joe if he runs. Don't be fooled by the basket of cash. It's not what it looks like.
About 40 students marched out of the Chester's Science and Discovery/Allied Health high school to protest learning conditions in the school. Large class sizes and a dearth of teachers have some kids and their parents thinking that the neither the district nor the state is serious about wanting to see the educated.
So they marched to a press conference held by the NAACP and Rep. Thaddeus Kirkland, to protest this year's budget cuts in education brought on by the state's economic troubles. Kirkland called it a "great day" in the city of Chester.
For years, Chester schools have shortchanged kids even when they were given plenty of money by the state to do a decent job. Now that they've been given less, it's ridiculous to expect they'll do better. But will they really do much worse?
Meanwhile, it's the teachers who have walked out on Philadelphia archdiocese schools unable to agree to a new contract. New archdiocese superintendent Mary Rochford is playing hardball with the union and is refusing a mediator to help with talks. This strike could drag on for a while.
UPDATE: Watch the video on the Chester protest. You'll have to wade though the chanting and the nonsense from Mondeshire and Kirkland but listen to the two kids at the end. They obviously care about getting an education. They deserve better than they are getting.
Now that the President's "coincidental" Wednesday conflict with the Republican debate has been resolved, we are free to give our undivided attention Thursday to the greatest speech in the history of mankind. A preview of Obama's proposals has been leaked to Spencerblog, and it's an unexpected* hole in one.
*Any Obama economic plan or unemployment figures must include the word "unexpected" since that oft-repeated excuse has become a new college drinking game.
Tonight, our fearless leader will boldly announce a new federal stimulus to build thousands of golf courses across America. This massive program will mandate that each citizen be required to play a minimum of two rounds of golf per week, expanding the Commerce Clause in the Constitution like Obamacare, or face a stiff fine. The same way President Kennedy challenged America to put a man on the moon by the end of the 60's, President Obama will challenge all Americans to break 100 by the end of his second term. Instead of the New Frontier, it will be called the New Fairway.
Tens of thousands of jobs will be created, real green jobs for real greenskeepers. The demand for landscapers will be so high that Congress will have to pass the Dream Act, providing amnesty for illegal aliens, and registered voters for Democratic districts. The increased physical activity supports the First Lady's campaign for healthy living, though its domestic focus might cramp her international travel lust.
Best of all, no one will ever be able to criticize the President for his record-breaking rounds of golf because he will have made the game a new entitlement.
Rhode Island is one of the bluest states in the country, and one where public sector unions have long worked with sympathetic politicians to create a true blue system of well paid public employees retiring comfortably on generous pensions with cost of living raises automatically thrown in.
The only problem is that the state could never afford the beautiful utopia it was crafting, and so politicians and union leaders chose the path of systemic deceit. Taxpayers weren’t told what the bill for the system would be; public service workers weren’t told that the pension guarantees they’d been sold were worthless because taxpayers would not and could not foot the bill.
An economic crisis is nature’s revenge on those who make and those who accept false promises; it is a holocaust of lies when the dross is burned away and only what is real and true remains. Think of cotton candy melting and charring in the flame of a blowtorch; that is what is happening to the secure retirements that “caring” blue politicians and “committed” blue union leaders promised gullible state workers.
In his 2008 convention speech, Barack Obama promised to create five million green economy jobs. The U.S. Conference of Mayors estimated in April 2009 that green jobs could account for 10 percent of new job growth over the next 30 years.
Alas, it was not to be. The gigantic public investments in green energy may be stimulating innovation and helping the environment. But they are not evidence that the government knows how to create private-sector jobs.
Obama Labor Secretary Hilda Solis has gotten rid of her black limo and taken to riding around Washington, DC in a new Chevrolet Equinox from Government Motors. Solis said she was inspired to have her office purchase the Equinox by the unionized American auto workers and "the pride they take making our automobiles here in America."
The problem is that this crossover SUV is built and assembled in Canada with parts that are also made in Canada. Maybe she is just taking her cue from her boss who took a pretend Midwest bus tour (he flew from rally to rally and then slipped onto the bus at arrival), aboard two special order buses made in Canada.
Our economy is in a difficult place and our workers are struggling. Is it too much to expect the Labor Secretary to celebrate jobs that are actual American jobs? Will this administration ever go to work for American families and stop the fraudulent politicking?
George Clooney announces that he will not run for president of the United States, though he will play a presidential candidate in an upcoming movie.
“... (L)ook, there’s a guy in office right now who is smarter than almost anyone you know, who’s nicer and who has more compassion than almost anyone you know. And he’s having an almost impossible time governing. Why would anybody volunteer for that job?” Mr. Clooney told a news conference.
He's got me. Though, there doesn't ever seem to be any shortage of volunteers from either party.
As for how smart, nice and compassionate, Mr. Obama is compared to all the people I know, I'll have to think about that. I don't know what makes George think Obama's so unbelievably smart, other than the fact that he agrees with him on a wide range of political social issues.
Other than getting himself elected senator from Illinois and President of the United States, I don't know what he's done to prove that he is one of the smartest people on planet earth. Not that they are the be all and end all, I wouldn't mind seeing his SAT scores and college transcripts. He hasn't released them. But I bet there are plenty of people I know who scored higher than he did on those tests. Who's to say they aren't "smarter" than this president? And if Barack Obama ran for a job that he is finding "impossible" to do, how smart does that make him?
As for him being nice and compassionate, believe me, I've come across a lot of nice and compassionate people in my lifetime. Most of them didn't go into politics. Some are nurses, some are doctors, some are lawyers, some are teachers, some are social workers, some are businessmen, some are Special Olympics volunteers, a few are even (very few) journalists. Barack Obama would have to be pretty damn nice and compassionate to claim the title of "The Nicest and Most Compassionate Person I Know."
Still, I think it is good George Clooney isn't going to run for president. He makes pretty good movies. I liked "Michael Clayton" even though it required a terrific amount of suspending disbelief to believe huge corporations typically engage murder squads to kill people in order to protect their profits.
His new movie "The Ides of March" is about a Pennsylvania governor running for president on a platform that includes phasing out the internal combustion engine and the death penalty. I will see it. And I will do my best to suspend disbelief in order to enjoy Mr. Clooney's concoction. But clearly he doesn't know much about Pennsylvania, if he thinks we would elect an anti-death penalty, anti-car governor. But who cares. This is just a movie, made by a big-time Hollywood star who is not running for president. What more can we reasonably ask for?
George Will doesn't praise Democrats often but he seems to like Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper, who grew up in Wynnwood, Pa. but went West to seek his fortune.
He found it in beer.
I knew John growing up. We lived in the same neighborhood and played sports together. Though he was two years older, we played on the same Pony League baseball team - The Wynnewood Warriors. My father was an assistant coach.
When my dad passed away this summer John sent me a nice note. They had reconnected in Denver some years ago, when my father became editor of the Denver Post. John had just opened his first of many brew pubs, then got into politics. Eventually, he ran for and became Denver's mayor. Then Colorado's governor.
It is interesting that Will recently wrote about New Jersey's Republican governor Chris Christie. Where Christie is combative and confrontational, Hickenlooper is friendly and disarming. Will finds both governors good fits for the states they govern at this moment in history.
So we Americans cannot help but feel some ambivalence toward our singularity in the world—with its draining entanglements abroad, the selfless demands it makes on both our military and our taxpayers, and all the false charges of imperial hubris it incurs. Therefore it is not surprising that America developed a liberalism—a political left—that took issue with our exceptionalism. It is a left that has no more fervent mission than to recast our greatness as the product of racism, imperialism and unbridled capitalism.
But this leaves the left mired in an absurdity: It seeks to trade the burdens of greatness for the relief of mediocrity. When greatness fades, when a nation contracts to a middling place in the world, then the world in fact no longer knocks on its door.