Wednesday, October 31, 2012
We Need Bigger Government
We know liberals are worried that President Obama might lose next week, but are they so panicky that they want to suggest even before the storm has passed that Mitt Romney and Republicans are against disaster relief? Apparently so. It's an especially low-rent tactic, akin to blaming the tea party for Jared Lee Loughner's shooting of Gabby Giffords. But it's equally absurd to argue that a once-in-a-century storm means you can't block-grant Medicaid.
Sestak Has Questions on Benghazi
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Beyond the Pale
President Has Been
When the history of this administration is written, maybe someone will note the dissonance between the president's hip persona and his retro ideology. Here was a man who promised a "transformative" presidency. Yet when transformation came, it amounted to a two-pronged attempt to impose, from one side, a version of European social democracy by way of ObamaCare, and from the other side a version of Chinese state-directed "capitalism" by way of the stimulus.Read it all.
Monday, October 29, 2012
Sunday, October 28, 2012
"Terafying" Planned Parenthood
From the comments, "terafied" takes great offense:
You know what? Stop. Just stop. Uninformed rants like this are destructive and idiotic. Planned Parenthood is a PRIMARY CARE PROVIDER offering baseline medical care for women who can't afford to get it elsewhere. They never claimed to be anything other than that. They do, however, administer reproductive health exams, including breast checks. They are trained to spot abnormalities, and if they do, they will send patients to imaging centers JUST LIKE EVERY OTHER PHYSICIAN DOES. And they also will pre-qualify low-income patients for the cost of mammography, by connecting them with programs such as Medicaid, or using their own Title X funding, to pay that patient's bill - UNLIKE EVERY OTHER PHYSICIAN.
Saturday, October 27, 2012
10 Questions for President Obama...
In light of his recent claim to have issued directives to secure embassy personnel, Bill Kristol would like to know:
1.) To whom did the president give the first of his "three very clear directives"—that is, "make sure that we are securing our personnel and doing whatever we need to?"I'm guessing before all those questions are answered, the president will assert "Executive Privilege."
2.) How did he transmit this directive to the military and other agencies?
3.) During the time when Americans were under attack, did the president convene a formal or informal meeting of his national security council? Did the president go to the situation room?
4.) During this time, with which members of the national security team did the president speak directly?
5.) Did Obama speak by phone or teleconference with the combatant commanders who would have sent assistance to the men under attack?
6.) Did he speak with CIA director David Petraeus?
7.) Was the president made aware of the repeated requests for assistance from the men under attack? When and by whom?
8.) Did he issue any directives in response to these requests?
9.) Did the president refuse to authorize an armed drone strike on the attackers?
10.) Did the president refuse to authorize a AC-130 or MC-130 to enter Libyan airspace during the attack?
Here's what the CIA says...
UPDATE: From The Blaze:
Francis “Bing” West, who served as an assistant secretary of defense under President Ronald Reagan, told Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren that the president’s explanation about his actions when the U.S. mission in Benghazi was attacked should be easily verifiable.
“President Obama today said that he gave an order to everyone while the attack was going on to do everything they could to secure the personnel,” West said. “Now that’s really big because that means that those who were turning down [former Navy SEAL] Ty Woods when he was asking for the help were going against the orders of the president of the United States.”
Woods was one of four Americans killed in the Libya assault. Obama on Friday wouldn’t answer directly whether pleas for help on the ground were denied during the attack, telling KUSA-TV, “the minute I found out what was happening, I gave three very clear directives. Number one, make sure that we are securing our personnel and doing whatever we need to.”
“A chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff doesn’t take an order from the president when he says ‘do everything’ and not put that in writing and send it out to the chain of command,” West said. “If that actually happened the way President Obama today said it happened, there’s a paper trail and I think people reasonably enough can say, ‘well can we see the order?’ because hundreds of others supposedly saw this order.”
“But if there is no order then people have to ask some very basic questions, ‘what the heck happened?’” he said.
Well, an investigation is underway. But it won't be done until after the election, don't you know.
Friday, October 26, 2012
Home State Blues: Liberalism's Wrecking Ball
Illinois politicians, including the present President of the United States, have wrecked one of the country’s potentially most prosperous and dynamic states, condemned millions of poor children to substandard education, failed to maintain vital infrastructure, choked business development and growth through unsustainable tax and regulatory policies — and still failed to appease the demands of the public sector unions and fee-seeking Wall Street crony capitalists who make billions off the state’s distress.Read it all here.
Thursday, October 25, 2012
Let's Go to the Videotape
But what does he call his own flip flops?
Bamnesia will do.
Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Project Veritas Claims Another Scalp
Trump's October Fazizzle
And I thought he'd gotten Obama to agree to appear on Celebrity Apprentice.
It scared the crap out of me when I was 7.
Meet Dan Waldron...
In GOP's War on Women Fewer Horses and Bayonets
KATHRYN JEAN LOPEZ: You contend that there is no “war on women” in the United States. If that’s the case, why does the Left seem to think it’s an accusation with traction?
SABRINA SCHAEFFER: There is absolutely no war on women. And the claim that one political party is openly hostile to more than 50 percent of the electorate should strike any reasonable person as absurd. You don’t have to be a political scientist to know that women – single or married, rural or urban, young or old, mothers or childless — are not a homogenous voting bloc. The reality is the “war on women” rhetoric is a despicable use of gender politics and fearmongering by Democrats to try to shore up a critical constituency — single women — whom the president won by a 45-point margin in 2008. These single female voters are a critical part of the Democratic base, and they are the basis for Sandra Fluke’s fame, the “Life of Julia” infographic, and the “war on women” narrative.Read it all.
The President Doesn't "Lie"
“What the president said is not correct,” Woodward told POLITICO Tuesday. “He’s mistaken. And it’s refuted by the people who work for him."Doh!
Why Planned Parenthood Doesn't Do Mammograms
The problem for Planned Parenthood—which thinks and acts much more like a business than most people realize—is that mammograms are much less profitable than the relatively lucrative procedure of abortion.Read it all.
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Questions on Libya
Read it all.
Monday, October 22, 2012
McGovern was an honest, good-humored man, and one of our memories involves an op-ed he wrote for the Journal in 1992 on the perils of running a small business. After retiring from the Senate, he fulfilled a lifetime ambition to buy and operate the Stratford Inn in Connecticut. The inn failed, in part due to a recession that was more severe in New England than elsewhere, but also because of the burdens imposed by government.
"My business associates and I also lived with federal, state and local rules that were all passed with the objective of helping employees, protecting the environment, raising tax dollars for schools, protecting our customers from fire hazards, etc.," he wrote.
"While I never have doubted the worthiness of any of these goals, the concept that most often eludes legislators is: 'Can we make consumers pay the higher prices for the increased operating costs that accompany public regulation and government reporting requirements with reams of red tape.'" The entire op-ed is available on OpinionJournal.com.Makes you wonder what he would have thought of Obamacare as a business owner.
The New Old Yawker
Obamacare Gone Wild
Sunday, October 21, 2012
Once you get past the Libya lie and CNN Candy's complicity in legitimizing that lie, it was quite remarkable that the main talking point after the second Presidential debate was Governor Romney's use of a "binder" in his recruitment of women to serve in Massachusetts state government. Why did all those deep thinkers in the media focus on the trivial and miss the instructive connection between the Libya and women's pay debate questions?
Even esteemed Daily Times Editor, Phil Heron, felt compelled to regurgitate the disingenuous Democratic spin while failing to mention that men in the Obama administration are compensated 18% more than women in the same position, and that Massachusetts under Romney was recognized for employing more woman in more senior positions than any other state.
Left unsaid in the binder meme was crazy Joe Biden's assertion one week earlier in the Vice-Presidential debate, between his snorts, guffaws and other rude noises, that State Department intelligence failed to advise the White House that this was an act of terror. This followed weeks of Obama excuses, apologizing for a 13-minute YouTube video that no one saw, and ignoring the late Ambassador Stevens' pleas for more security at the Benghazi consulate.
The net effect of Biden's and Obama's misrepresentations is to throw Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, under the bus. How can any responsible analysis of the debates ignore this public humiliation of Hillary? Hasn't this poor woman suffered enough? Why do these politically ambitious liars keep dumping on her? No matter how much you disagree with her politics, you have to admire her fortitude.
It's apparent today's journalists haved turned into partisan cheerleaders when Governor Romney's commitment to equality is nitpicked over a "binder", while Obama and Biden impugn the reputation of their highest-ranking female Cabinet officer without question or consequence. America is much better served with Romney walking the walk rather than Obama talking the talk.
Negativity, Nastiness and Deception
Barack Obama was in Manchester on Thursday. When he came to Veterans Park in 2008, he sold “hope and change.” He was uplifting, inspiring. Last week, that was gone. In its place was the negativity, the deception, the nastiness that Obama once said he wanted to remove from politics.
Obama offered New Hampshire nothing but bitterness and envy. He attacked Romney with a litany of mischaracterizations and deliberate falsehoods.
It was far from the uplifting message Obama delivered four years ago. But four years ago Obama did not have an indefensible record.Read it all.
My print column is up.
Saturday, October 20, 2012
Friday, October 19, 2012
Spencerblog Returning Soon
Friday, October 12, 2012
Obama Loses Big Bird
Reached for comment, Mr. Bird said, "The Obama people are making me look like a jerk in need of a government handout. I'm good. I'm rich. I'm worth a couple hundred mil. That's a lot of bird seed, bro."
It was Paul Ryan, the conservative, who kept his cool and made his points. He ably defended the proposed policies of the Romney/Ryan ticket. He pointed out the failures of the Obama administration without sounding shrill or nasty. He didn't mug for the camera, sigh, roll his eyes, or otherwise try to distract viewers from what his opponent was saying. He was a perfect gentleman.
He was the anti-Joe Biden.
A certain type of Democrat will take solace from Biden's performance. He was aggressive and on offense most of the night, accusing Romney of insulting his own mother and father with his 47 percent remark, and trying to scare seniors and middle-class workers into believing that the GOP ticket is only interested in tax cuts for the rich.
His blustery performance was an attempt to distract voters from the record of the Obama administration and the fact that neither he nor the president have a credible plan to improve the economy over the next four years.
He did what partisan Democrats were so disappointed that President Obama didn't do during his debate. He attacked the "enemy." The problem with that is that Independents and swing voters don't see Republicans as the enemy. They see an economy that is limping along, 23 million under or unemployed, failing wages and all the rest. They see a President who hasn't lived up to his promises or billing.
It is old liberal lions like Joe Biden who want to hold on to an unsustainable status quo when it comes to medicare, social security and other entitlements. He is the Crocker Jarman of this administration. And win or lose this election, his unaffordable, big union, welfare-state liberalism is on the way out.
UPDATE: Mike Barone agrees with Spencerblog.
Joe Biden appealed to Democratic partisans, firing them up by attacking and, even more often, smirking at Paul Ryan’s arguments. But smirks only work when your audience starts off agreeing with you. That would be the case with strong Democratic partisans, but it’s not at all that clear that it appeals to Independents, or to those who are undecided or moveable. He was trying to dismiss Ryan’s arguments as ridiculous, in line with Democratic talking points that no rational person could possibly agree with him, but I think that only works with people who are already convinced. He may have increased Democratic voters’ enthusiasm—down in the dumps after Barack Obama’s performance eight days ago—but he didn’t do much in the way of converting those who are not already converted.Sounds right.
Ryan beats Biden, 48 to 44. Sounds about where the overall race is, which is bad, bad news for Democrats.
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
A Sister's Concern
My print column is up.
Tuesday, October 9, 2012
Let 'Em Rumble
Lehrer defends himself here.
"The first few times I said 'let's move on' and they wanted to keep talking, the inclination of course is to stop them so I could cover all the subjects I wanted to cover," he said. "But I'm sitting there thinking, 'Wait a minute, they're talking to each other, leave 'em alone.' So I backed off."
He'd get much harsher criticism if he prematurely stopped discussions, he said.
"Not only that, but I would have deserved it," he said.Spencerblog completely agrees. Now, let's see what the "moderators" in the upcoming debates do. Will they try to make themselves the story. Or will they let the candidates have at each other? We're rooting for the latter.
Sully in Full Panic
Venezuela's Food Stamp President
Could it happen here? Sure. Bret Stephens reports.
Monday, October 8, 2012
Sunday, October 7, 2012
Wag The Economist
We've all heard the prevailing wisdom that no President has ever been re-elected with an unemployment rate above 8%. So is anyone surprised that, right on cue, the government jobs report squeaks just under that symbolic 8% threshold, conveniently one month before the election?
Fresh off Obama's embarrassing performance in the debate last Wednesday, otherwise known as the "debacle in Denver", these supposedly neutral government reports couldn't have come at a better time for the President. His campaign could switch gears from making excuses for Obama's 90-minute broadcast meltdown to reiterating the fantasy that their economic plans were finally beginning to work. It's too bad actually, because the post-debate excuses were almost as entertaining as the actual event.
Unfortunately, there is no entertainment value in the human misery these labor statistics convey. Even if you accept the new 7.8% unemployment numbers, they are based upon assumptions that reflect an America in profound distress. The total unemployment and underemployment rate (the U6 computation) remains the same, a debilitating 14.7%.
Likewise, the labor force participation rate has not changed and is stuck at a 30-year low. If this labor force participation rate was the same size as when Obama took office, the unemployment rate would be 10.7%. It should be no cause for celebration that millions of Americans have given up looking for work.
So the politicking and spinning will go on, obscuring the high cost of this Administration's economic and leadership failures. What is especially troubling is that in Mitt Romney we have perhaps the most qualified person ever to run for President and fix these problems. As long as the voters permit these "Wag The Dog" or "Wag The Economist" campaigns to dumb down our public discourse, then we will continue to suffer with a partisan, incompetent government diminishing the American dream.
Viola, Maggie and the Heartbreakers
My print column is up.
Saturday, October 6, 2012
From the Vagina Monologues...
Friday, October 5, 2012
If It Moves, Tax It!
When Obama mentioned this talking point, Romney replied, "I've been in business 25 years and I have no idea what you're talking about. Maybe I should get a new accountant."
Obama offered no defense of his statement.
But today, John Nichols over at The Nation - a far left political magazine - does.
Obama was talking about strategies for getting new revenues without raising taxes on struggling businesses: “(Part) of the way to do it is to not give tax breaks to companies that are shipping jobs overseas,” said the president. “Right now, you can actually take a deduction for moving a plant overseas. I think most Americans would say that doesn't make sense. And all that raises revenue.”
That’s not actually a debatable point. The U.S. tax code has, since the 1980s, provided multinational corporations with tax breaks for moving jobs overseas.No, it doesn't and no it hasn't. What the tax code reasonably allows is U.S. companies not to pay taxes on profits not earned in this country. Businesses pay the taxes to the country where they are earned (at the rates those governments charge). Corporate profits are only taxed when it is brought back to this country. Because of our high corporate tax rates, businesses are discouraged from repatriating that cash. Lower tax rates would not only encourage businesses to repatriate that cash, it would encourage the companies to stay here in the first place.
Imagine, you owned a business in New Jersey and you moved it to Pennsylvania because you found the workers and the tax rates in the Keystone state to be better. But you continued to live in New Jersey. Would the Garden State be giving you "a tax break" if it didn't put lien on your house for moving your business to a more hospitable environment? Of course not.
Democrats and Republicans have talked for years about changing the code. The issue was debated in the Senate as recently as July, when Republicans blocked action on the “Bring Jobs Home Act,” which would have provided a 20 percent tax break for the costs of moving jobs back to the U.S.See the difference? An actual "tax break" is being proposed for business to moving jobs to the U.S. There isn't a "tax break" for leaving.
That measure, would, as well, have rescinded business expense deductions that CNN notes are now “available to companies that are associated with the cost of moving operations overseas."No wonder the GOP didn't support it.
The reason some businessmen, like Steve Jobs for instance, open a plant oversees is to escape the oppressively hostile business environment they find in states like California. They don't get U.S. tax breaks for doing so. They just aren't punished as severely as liberals would like them.
The Obama/Nichols position is like saying the federal government gives you a tax break for dying. Only, it doesn't. It charges you to leave this veil of tears as well.
UPDATE: Just saw this exchange in the comments section of today's column on this very point.
From Stephen Chapman:
Wow Gil - guess you don't know how to do any research do you? Companies DO receive tax breaks for shipping jobs overseas - just like they receive a tax break for moving to Iowa from Philadelphia. any normal business expense related to relocating operations is tax deductible - whether moving overseas or domestically. You could argue that Obama is being disingenuous when he says that companies receive a tax break for moving jobs overseas. But you didn't. You said he was wrong. Well Gil, guess you never heard of google or don't know any accountants or CPA's huh? Epic Fail Gil. Epic Fail.DelcoBrian responds:
The Obama Mythology
Stuff we learned...
• Contrary to the mythology of Obama as idealistic defender of the poor, attorney Obama helped a famous Chicago slumlord get off with a $50 fine after the guy failed to turn the lights and water back on in the affordable-housing complex from which he had also thrown out the residents in the dead of winter.• Contrary to the mythology of Obama as the principled speaker of truth to corrupt power, Obama's 1997 Valentine's Day speech pointed the way to uniting Chicago's infamous Daley political machine with its longtime nemesis, the city's liberal activists. Key to the deal: using tax dollars and credits to build affordable housing. Developers got rich, liberal activists got jobs and influence, politicians got campaign money, and poor people got the shaft.• Contrary to the mythology about Obama as "rock-star" law professor, his students at the University of Chicago Law School often ranked him in the bottom half of the faculty. During Obama's final years teaching, only a minority of his students said they would recommend his course.Interesting. But of course his class was obviously chock full of racists.
An Honest Liberal Economist
WASHINGTON -- After 47 percent, the campaign's most incendiary number is $5 trillion. That's the tax cut planned by Mitt Romney with most benefits going to the wealthy, according to President Obama and his campaign. The president has used the figure repeatedly, as have his surrogates and ads. In Wednesday's debate, Romney vehemently denied that there ever was a $5 trillion tax cut for the rich. He's right. The figure is a partisan construct that, somehow, has been given a pass by most of the media as one plausible version of the truth. It isn't.
Obama Pulverized at Debate
George Will, a relentless critic of the Romney campaign, also gives him props for showing Obama to be the callow young executive that he is.
The presidential campaign, hitherto a plod through a torrent of words tedious beyond words, began to dance in Denver. There a masterfully prepared Mitt Romney completed a trifecta of tasks and unveiled an issue that, because it illustrates contemporary liberalism’s repellant essence, can constitute his campaign’s closing argument.
Barack Obama, knight of the peevish countenance, illustrated William F. Buckley’s axiom that liberals who celebrate tolerance of other views always seem amazed that there are other views. Obama, who is not known as a martyr to the work ethic and who might use a teleprompter when ordering lunch, seemed uncomfortable with a format that allowed fluidity of discourse.Also...
Late in the debate, when Romney for a third time referred to Obamacare's creation of "an unelected board, appointed board, who are going to decide what kind of [medical] treatment you ought to have," Obama said, "No, it isn't." Oh?
The Independent Payment Advisory Board perfectly illustrates liberalism's itch to remove choices from individuals, and from their elected representatives, and to repose the power to choose in supposed experts liberated from democratic accountability. Beginning in 2014, IPAB would consist of 15 unelected technocrats whose recommendations for reducing Medicare costs must be enacted by Congress by Aug. 15 of each year. If Congress does not enact them, or other measures achieving the same level of cost containment, IPAB's proposals automatically are transformed from recommendations into law. Without being approved by Congress. Without being signed by the president.
These facts refute Obama's Denver assurance that IPAB "can't make decisions about what treatments are given." It can and will by controlling payments to doctors and hospitals. Hence the emptiness of Obamacare's language that IPAB's proposals "shall not include any recommendation to ration health care."Ouch!
Thursday, October 4, 2012
Wednesday, October 3, 2012
Best Tweet goes to Mark Hemingway...
That wasn't a debate so much as Mitt Romney just took Obama for a cross country drive strapped to the roof of his car.Somebody get a hose.
The nut jobs at MSNBC are having conniptions from Chris Matthews on down. Romney lied. Romney. Romney lied.
There's your headline, Rachel: Romney lied! Obama died!
UDATE: From Andrew Sullivan - one of the president's biggest fans...
Look: you know how much I love the guy, and you know how much of a high information viewer I am, and I can see the logic of some of Obama's meandering, weak, professorial arguments. But this was a disaster for the president for the key people he needs to reach, and his effete, wonkish lectures may have jolted a lot of independents into giving Romney a second look.
Obama looked tired, even bored; he kept looking down; he had no crisp statements of passion or argument; he wasn't . He was entirely defensive, which may have been the strategy. But it was the wrong strategy. At the wrong moment.
The person with authority on that stage was Romney - offered it by one of the lamest moderators ever, and seized with relish. This was Romney the salesman. And my gut tells me he sold a few voters on a change tonight. It's beyond depressing. But it's true.
More here. Time to sober up, America
Voter ID Injunctified
His ruling leaves the law in place, finds that there is nothing unconstitutional or unlawful about it, only that some affected voters haven't been provided enough time to comply with it and that the state hadn't been able to do enough reach out to get these would-be voters suitable IDs.
Spencerblog remains skeptical of the use anecdotal stories pushing the meme that getting an photo ID was just too great a burden for thousands of people. But, it's not a bad thing that Judge Simpson decided to err on the side of voter inclusiveness, rather than exclusiveness.
There will be no good excuse in the future for voters not to be able to prove who there are when they are casting a ballot. Despite what Democrats have been saying for months, voter fraud does and has occurred for years. There are numerous examples of it, including (but not limited to) the apparent theft of the 1960 presidential election. Tightening up the process, making it less susceptible to fraud and out-right theft, is in everybody's best interest.
Questions for the Candidates
UPDATE: From the comments, 1uofpitt1 writes:
No, that is not the tragic reality. The waiting list to adopt babies with Down syndrome is long. If only their mother's wouldn't abort them. The cost of raising such a child is no more exorbitant than the cost of raising any other child. Compare the fate pro-lifers have in mind for Down syndrome kids to the fate pro-abortionists have in mind - being sliced and diced and trashed as medical waste - I'll go with the pro-lifers every time.
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Mr. Bayh Regrets
Monday, October 1, 2012
First the Catholic Church, then Penn State. Now the Boy Scouts.