"Anyone interested in President Obama's actual executive-power policies, however, should look at his position on warrantless wiretapping. Dick Cheney must be smiling."
Saturday, March 7, 2009
Why has the debate over global warming become so partisan with most on the Left and Right taking opposing positions? Some on the Left argue that people on the political Left are more willing to consider the evidence of science. But I see a more likely reason: People on the Right do not like high taxes and suspect the argument for restrictions on carbon dixoide emissions is just a convenient opportunity to increase tax revenues and the size of government. The Obama Administration demonstrates the truth of these suspicions. A half trillion dollars a year is a lot of money.
Friday, March 6, 2009
WELL, IT WORKED FOR MSNBC UNDER BUSH: Glenn Beck strikes ratings gold by challenging Barack Obama. And it’s working for Rush Limbaugh. The Obama White House’s tendency to lash out at critics by name provides added incentive, of course.
It's a good / service. It's something you're entitled to buy, but that no one owes you. Just like a car, a bike, a house, food, or a Tickle Me, Elmo doll.
No one ever has a right to anything provided by another person, unless and until s/he has paid that person the mutually agreed upon price for the good / service.
"Positive" v. "negative" rights just plays into the Left's dishonest game. "Rights" are things people can not take away from you. They are not things you take from other people.
"In an interview with CNBC, Representative Barney Frank says he wants to push for prosecution of the people who caused the country's financial meltdown," the financial network reports:
The Massachusetts Democrat says he has no specific targets in mind, but says the most significant thing lawmakers can do is make past bad practices illegal.
A September report from the Business & Media Institute suggests one possible target for investigation: a senior member of the House Banking Committee. This congressman is "a recipient of more than $40,000 in campaign donations from Fannie since 1989" and "was once romantically involved with a Fannie Mae executive." The same congressman "was and remains a stalwart defender of Fannie Mae." We won't mention his name--oh wait, come to think of it, we already did.
In other news, O.J. Simpson has gone undercover in a Nevada prison in search of the real killer.
But in these troubled economic times, one big company is bucking the trend.
Exxon Mobil put on a show of strength on Thursday, pledging to increase investments in coming years, chiding rivals for mistimed acquisitions and reminding everyone it had the financial strength to make headway even as other companies pulled back.“The question now becomes who can be successful in more challenging times,” Rex W. Tillerson, Exxon’s chairman and chief executive, said at the company’s annual investor presentation at the New York Stock Exchange.
The nation may have moved on, but the court has not. Next month, as Hillary Rodham Clinton settles in as secretary of state, the court will have a look at “Hillary: The Movie,” a scathingly hostile look at Mrs. Clinton in the tradition of Michael Moore’s “Fahrenheit 9/11.”
The case, to be argued March 24, will require the court to confront a new genre with old roots: the slashing political documentary.“Hillary: The Movie,” released last year in the thick of the Democratic presidential primary season, is a fine example of the genre. There are ripe voice-overs, shadowy re-enactments and spooky mood music. There is, inevitably, Ann Coulter. Asked to say something nice about Mrs. Clinton, Ms. Coulter responds, “Looks good in a pantsuit.”
Banker and Boston are among a small cadre of savvy gamblers who, because of a quirk in college basketball scheduling, become Ivy League scholars each Friday. As nearly every other Division I conference takes the night off, the Ivy League offers the gamblers an opportunity to capitalize on the dearth of information available on teams that represent institutions better known for patents and professors than for athletic prowess.
"The House on Thursday night turned back another call to investigate the PMA Group, a once-powerful lobbying firm whose offices were recently raided by the FBI and which has close ties to Pennsylvania Rep. John P. Murtha (D).
Twenty-one Democrats, including nine freshmen, voted to proceed with debate on the measure offered by Arizona Rep. Jeff Flake (R) calling for an investigation of the lobbying firm. Most of the Democrats represent fiscally conservative districts."
"Mark-to-market accounting is the principle reason why our financial system is in a meltdown. The destructiveness of mark-to-market -- which was in force before the Great Depression -- is why FDR suspended it in 1938. It was unnecessarily destroying banks."
Thursday, March 5, 2009
"A sound, if cynical, policy for elections is to never vote for a candidate whose policies match your own. Since politicians often renege on their promises, you are better off voting for a candidate who says he'll do the opposite of what you want—and trusting that he's a liar.
George H.W. Bush, after all, gave an emphatic promise not to raise taxes and then raised taxes. Bill Clinton vowed to crack down on China's human rights abuses and didn't. George W. Bush championed a humble foreign policy."
"They may need a support group before the month is out. They could gather in New York or Washington where many victims reside. The meetings would start: “I’m Maureen [or David]. I’m a duped Barack voter. And I’m mad.”
The ranks indeed are filling with the disaffected and the disappointed — Chris Buckley, Maureen Dowd, David Brooks, David Gergen, and even that gynecological sleuth and blogger Andrew Sullivan. And then there is the very angry Marty Peretz. Their complaints are varied but expressed with equal amounts of remorse and bitterness. They all have been done wrong by Barack."
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
"What Obama does have, though, is an atmosphere of crisis and a massively-unpopular opposition party, which grants him an unparalleled political opportunity to pass whatever spending the Democratic Party likes, and damn the short-term cost. And what you see in his budgeting proposals, I think, is the liberal equivalent of the conservative attempt to 'starve the beast.' In both the Reagan and Bush eras, Republicans passed tax cuts and ran up large deficits while hoping that by starving the federal government of revenue they would curb its long-run growth. Obama's spending proposals would effectively reverse that dynamic - they would create new spending commitments and run up large deficits, in the hopes that the dollars poured into health care and education will create a new baseline for government's obligations, which in turn will create the political space for tax increases on the middle class. Like the starve-the-beast approach, the Obama strategy puts off the hard part till tomorrow: Give them tax cuts today, conservatives said, and they'll swallow spending cuts tomorrow; give them universal health care, universal pre-K, subsidies for green industry and all the rest of it today, liberals seem to be thinking, and they'll be willing to pay for it tomorrow."
"You see, when I'm not wasting time greedily praying to be rich, I plead with some higher power to sentence my middling local representatives to painful obscurity and professional failure. My congresswoman, for instance, carries an intellectual confidence so severely out of step with her skill set that the promise of disappointment, I trust, one day will bring me great joy."
"Down came the hands. No one needed to be told who that man was, or why he was there. Everyone behind paused to wait patiently and respectfully, and everyone within reach helped me pick that old, frail, brave man up to look on the nuts and bolts of that totem of his distant life. And they thanked him, and they asked him questions, and marveled at him. A Brigadier General and a sailor and a J.A.G. and Vietnam vets by the handful pressed his hand for the piquant residue of that life that might be on it.
He just looked for one familiar face that he had not brought with him, but there were none.
My father asks for nothing."
(My father passed away on Sunday)
But what most of you probably don't realize is that this is EXACTLY what the Obama, Reid, Pelosi team wants - a complete capitulation of both the market and the populace. This will enable them to not just dominate the conversation even more deeply than they are now; but to control the entire pie when the rubble clears.
We will have no choice but to allow the federal government to be the major player (at least that's what they think) in every economic, political, and social agenda. There will be no opposition, there will be no other way..... we are being played for fools, folks.
And I think that this speaks directly to my point:
President Barack Obama enjoys widespread backing from a frightened American public for his ambitious, front-loaded agenda, a new poll indicates.
He is more popular than ever, Americans are hopeful about his leadership, and opposition Republicans are getting drubbed in public opinion, the new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll suggests.
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
"Of course it is true that if you have spent any significant time studying economic crises, including our own past ones, you cannot help but have a little intellectual thrill of recognition at understanding emotionally a phenomenon that you previously only grasped intellectually--'So this is what it felt like!' But for an adult, it's the same kind of thrill that you get when you finally age enough to grasp the sadness behind all those essays about lost youth. You don't root for cancer to spread just because it gives you a deeper perspective on Keats."
"Up until now, President Obama has voted “present” on enemy combatants. Rather than resolve the dilemma between the law-enforcement approach (which he supported as a candidate) and the law-of-war paradigm, he has said he is studying what to do about the remaining 245 Gitmo detainees. Now, it appears his plan is incalculably worse than either alternative: He is going to let many of them go."
"...the Obama budget is more than just the sum of its parts. There is, entailed in it, a promiscuous unwillingness to set priorities and accept trade-offs. There is evidence of a party swept up in its own revolutionary fervor — caught up in the self-flattering belief that history has called upon it to solve all problems at once.
So programs are piled on top of each other and we wind up with a gargantuan $3.6 trillion budget. We end up with deficits that, when considered realistically, are $1 trillion a year and stretch as far as the eye can see. We end up with an agenda that is unexceptional in its parts but that, when taken as a whole, represents a social-engineering experiment that is entirely new.
The U.S. has never been a society riven by class resentment. Yet the Obama budget is predicated on a class divide. The president issued a read-my-lips pledge that no new burdens will fall on 95 percent of the American people. All the costs will be borne by the rich and all benefits redistributed downward."
Monday, March 2, 2009
"I am not so sure that Barack Obama is going to lose support among his followers any time soon. If deception has worked to his advantage so far it was largely the self-deception among those who felt compelled to believe in him. BHO’s great talent was knowing how to tap into this need and package himself so that he passed, like a shiny silk cloth which changes color depending on the angle of the light, as anything you wanted him to be at all."
In the 1960s, the cardboard record jacket came into its own as a canvas for graphic artists, who used its ample dimensions to spin elaborate visual and conceptual fantasias. Album covers became generational touchstones, with iconic images like the "family portrait" of famous people rendered as cardboard cutouts and waxworks on the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, the Day-Glo colors and trippy starburst ornamentation on Cream's Disraeli Gears, and the extravagantly Gothic lettering on the Grateful Dead's Aoxomoxoa.
THE GORE EFFECT STRIKES AGAIN: “That’s right, folks: the Left’s day of civil disobedience in D.C. to protest global warming looks to be snowed out — just as I predicted back in December.”
Sunday, March 1, 2009
"Byrd specifically noted the creation of three new White House bodies -- the offices of Health Reform, Urban Affairs Policy, and Energy and Climate Change Policy -- and complained that 'the rapid and easy accumulation of power by White House staff can threaten the Constitutional system of checks and balances. At the worst, White House staff have taken direction and control of programmatic areas that are the statutory responsibility of Senate-confirmed officials.'"
"If your bullshit meter isn’t already slamming the needle into the red zone, read on:"