Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Political Digest for November 30, 2011

Time to do your Christmas shopping. What better gift for your friends who hope to have a future than my book. You can educate them and support wounded troops by buying a copy. And not a penny goes to SSgt Grinch here.

The Coming Collapse of the American Republic
All royalties go to a charity to help wounded veterans. E-Book available at Smash Words:
Please forward and post where possible.

Too busy to OWS

Compromise as a Positive Value in Political Economy: Rope-a-Dope on Debt, Deficits and the Size of Government by Samuel L. Skogstad, Ph.D.
Guest Column by a Marine turned economist. Worth Reading. ~Bob.

Best and Worst Run States in America — An Analysis Of All 50
Excerpt: Despite these differences, states can do a great deal to control their fate. Well-run states have a great deal in common with well-run corporations. Books are kept balanced. Investment is prudent. Debt is sustainable. Innovation is prized. Workers are well-chosen and well-trained. Executives, including elected and appointed officials, are retained based on merit and not politics. (Wisconsin is 16th, Illinois 49th. Thank god for California, 50th. ~Bob.

Worth Reading: Gingrich and Immigration by Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: The purpose of American immigration laws and policies is not to be either humane or inhumane to illegal immigrants. The purpose of immigration laws and policies is to serve the national interest of this country. … At one time, immigrants came to America to become Americans. Today, the apostles of multiculturalism and grievance-mongering have done their best to keep foreigners foreign and, if possible, feeling aggrieved. Our own schools and colleges teach grievances.

Another Sowell! Lessons of History? by Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: Senator Goldwater was not crazy enough to start a nuclear war. But the way he talked sometimes made it seem as if he were. Ronald Reagan would later be elected and re-elected taking positions essentially the same as those on which Barry Goldwater lost big time. Reagan was simply a lot better at articulating his beliefs.

Sign of the Times - by Mark Steyn
Excerpt: If I've sounded a wee bit overwrought in recent columns, it's because America is seizing up before our eyes. And I'm a little bewildered by how many Americans can't see it. I think about that chap at LaGuardia with "Don't Tread on Me" on his chest, and government bureaucrats in his pants. And I wonder if America's exceptional attitudinal swagger isn't providing a discreet cover for the shriveling of liberty. Sometimes an in-your-face attitude blinds you to what's going on under your nose.

What You Don't Often Hear About Those 'Greedy' One-Percenters - by John Tamny, Forbes
Excerpt: People who should know better bemoan the economic means possessed by the 1 percent, but rarely do they consider the gargantuan efforts required by those at the top to get there in the first place. To show why this is true it’s useful to reference an opinion piece written by Thomas Sowell long, long ago. Having witnessed a caricature artist draw a willing individual, when the artist collected his payment after services rendered he was dismayed to hear the customer complain about the “high” cost of something which took five minutes to draw. But as the artist correctly pointed out, the customer didn’t see the 25 years of hard work and practice that preceded his ability to sketch an individual in five minutes.

Fed “Secrecy” Slowly Falls…
Will make you want to join OWS, of they weren’t smelly socialists wanting more of the government that created the bust and aided the looters. ~Bob.

Reid bill might block state immigration laws
Democrats in Congress have proposed a new racial profiling ban that could thwart state and local laws on immigration enforcement, such as the controversial Arizona law currently tied up in federal court, by withholding federal funding for state and local law enforcement agencies engaged in "racial profiling" and empowering the Department of Justice (DOJ) to file lawsuits against state and local governments. (Throw open the borders and let the colonists in to destroy our culture. As long as it means votes for Democrats in the short term. ~Bob.)

No room at the inn for persecuted Christians
Muslim immigrants are resettled posthaste throughout the West, with or without proper ID (there is a famous one in DC). Yet, persecuted Christians, the most threatened and desperately needy group by far, are denied entry in our post-American world. Perhaps we shouldn't even call it America any more, you know, when things come down to this abysmal state of affairs. --Don Hank

Regulatory Analysis and Regulatory Reform
Excerpt: Congress and the executive branch have attempted to improve the quality of regulatory decisions by adopting several laws and executive orders. These laws and orders require agencies to follow a system of decision-making that is meant to optimize policies and ensure that they will address their tailored problems, all while minimizing costs: identify the root cause of a problem, define the goal to be achieved, establish a list of possible means of attaining the goal, assess the benefits and costs of each option, and select the policy that maximizes benefits over costs. Yet, despite the logical coherence of this process and its ability to bring about sound regulatory policy, federal agencies have consistently ignored this call and circumvented this system, say Jerry Ellig and Sherzod Abdukadirov of the Mercatus Center.

Fuel Efficiency Standards Will Be Expensive
Sticking it to the average guy so rich, elite liberals can feel green and fuzzy, like month old meat in the fridge. ~Bob. Excerpt: Doubling fuel-efficiency standards to 54.5 miles per gallon (mpg) by 2025 won't be cheap -- and it will require the government to consider other implications, says the Detroit News. The Obama administration finally unveiled the price tag to the auto industry for its proposed 2017-2025 fuel economy regulations earlier this month: $157.3 billion. In total, the proposed regulations will supposedly save drivers $1.7 trillion at the pump. But the administration said the savings at the pump will wipe out about $50 billion in gas tax revenue -- and the government will have to find another way to fund road repairs. It's one of the most expensive -- if not the most expensive -- regulation in U.S. history.

Retirements hit Dem aspirations for a House takeover in 2012
Excerpt: Rep. Barney Frank’s (D-Mass.) announcement Monday that he won’t seek reelection — coming on the heels of Rep. Charles Gonzalez’s (D-Texas) weekend announcement to the same effect — threw another stumbling block in the way of Democrats as they struggle to take back control of the House.

Key question in scandal: Why?
Excerpt: Confusion surrounds the murderously destructive Operation Fast and Furious gun-running scandal mostly for one very big reason: None of the Washington, D.C., planners of the federal plan to trace weapons purchased in Arizona to the drug cartels of Mexico have articulated how they expected to accomplish that feat. It is the great, enduring mystery of Fast and Furious. (From the left leaning Arizona Republic. ~Bob.)

Gingrich Wields History, Seeking to Add Chapter
Excerpt: Newt Gingrich is a historian. He earned a Ph.D. in history. If you’ve forgotten, he’ll remind you. (My problems with Newt aside, all else being equal, I’d far rather have a historian in the White House than a lawyer. Or Community Organizer. ~Bob.)

Decorated Marine Sues Contractor.
Excerpt: Two months ago, Dakota Meyer was awarded the Medal of Honor by President Barack Obama for his service in Afghanistan, the military's most prestigious award. On Monday, Sgt. Meyer alleged that a defense contractor has called him mentally unstable and a problem drinker, ruining his chances for a job in the defense industry. Sgt. Dakota Meyer alleges BAE Systems blocked him from a defense-industry job by claiming he is mentally unstable and has a drinking problem. (This is a guy who told the WH he couldn’t take a call from Obama at 10am because he had to work. They better settle. ~Bob.)

Along Mexican border, US ranchers say they live in fear
Excerpt: "I'm a citizen of the United States. This is supposedly sovereign soil, but right now it's anybody's who happens to be crossing here," he said. "I'm a little nervous being here right now. Definitely don’t come down here after dark."

How the EPA May Cost You Thousands
Excerpt: Brace yourself. The cost of a new car in America is set to explode, skyrocketing by thousands of dollars, all thanks to a new regulation proposed by President Barack Obama's Environmental Protection Agency and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Government’s back door censorship
Excerpt: If you are censored and told what you may or may not say, it probably will not be the result of government action. The government still has First Amendment considerations to contend with, making censorship politically difficult. If the government decides to censor you, it will leave the dirty work of doing so to an NGE. What is an NGE, you ask?
Excerpt: If just watching from the sidelines counted for leadership then the President had a great week last week—because that just about sums-up the White House response to the most critical foreign policy front at the moment—the Middle East. The Arab Spring is long gone, but the tumult that has spread throughout the region is far from over. If anything, the situation may be more unsettled now than it was when the Spring sprung.

Neurosurgeon Dishes on Obamacare 'Death Panels', Administration Calls Patients 'Units' -

Stalin's daughter Svetlana dies in Wisconsin
Good news for the Stalinists who want to “Recall Walker” to build a soviet style all powerful state in Wisconsin. ~Bob. Excerpt: The only daughter of Soviet dictator Josef Stalin, Svetlana Peters, who denounced communism after a Cold War defection worthy of a novel, has died in Wisconsin, authorities said on Monday.

Ugly way to win
Excerpt: You could almost hear the hands rubbing together in glee in President Obama’s political shop at the failure of the congressional supercommittee. How the president’s politicos must welcome a new count in the indictment against the “do-nothing Congress.” The phrase famously originates from the 1948 presidential election, when Harry Truman used it to lambaste a just-elected GOP Congress and claw his way to an upset re-election victory.

Worth Reading from NYT: The Future of the Obama Coalition by Thomas B. Edsall
Excerpt: For decades, Democrats have suffered continuous and increasingly severe losses among white voters. But preparations by Democratic operatives for the 2012 election make it clear for the first time that the party will explicitly abandon the white working class.

Worth Reading: The New Deal: 1932-2011.
Excerpt: The goal is to re-elect President Obama – which is something that poor African-American and rich liberal voters both wish to do – and if that is accomplished, then anything else is extra. Which is just as well, because nobody really expects Obama to have much in the way of coat-tails this go-round.

Advice Column: Is Obama's Presidency So Divisive as to Sever Old Friendships?
Excerpt: Jane talks of the president incessantly, referring to him at every possible conversational turn. She calls Republicans “the clowns.” She’s lived in academia her entire adult life and has contempt for those who don’t share her politics. Throughout our decades of friendship, I never disclosed my political views to her.

Is the Occupy Wall Street Movement Occupied?
Excerpt: Anti-Israel and Muslim-American advocacy groups in the United States are capitalizing on the Occupy Wall Street Movement (OWS) to promote their own agendas.
The Occupy movement started in New York's Zuccotti Park Sept. 17, and spread to more than 100 cities, according to the movement's "unofficial" website.

UK To Tap Pension Funds to Help Economy
Excerpt: Britain unveiled plans on Monday to tap pension funds for the lion’s share of an investment of up to 30 billion pounds ($46.5 billion) in big building projects to help to revitalise a stagnant economy forecast to slip back into recession next year. The measures are the latest in a drip feed of government announcements ahead of Finance Minister George Osborne’s autumn statement on Tuesday when growth forecasts will be cut as the euro zone crisis bites. (The trouble with socialism is that in order for it to be instituted, people have got to be taught to trust the government. Now that we all see what that leads to, whom do we trust now? Like it or not, we will have to start trusting in God when the whole thing comes crashing down. There won't be anything else to trust. --Don Hank)

A Bailout Monstrosity
Excerpt: On Monday, after two years of efforts to pierce the veil of secrecy surrounding the largest bank bailout in history, revealed the true scope of the phrase, “too big to fail.” In short, the number is staggering: total loan guarantees and lending limits engineered by the Federal Reserve to rescue the financial system amounted to $7.77 trillion as of March 2009.

How we know they know they are lying
Excerpt: It is to some extent forgivable when people adopt extreme positions out of misapprehension or delusion. It is quite another matter if they mislead others by deliberate falsehood. Politicians, of course, treat the lie as part of their professional equipment. Indeed, in some circumstances they are obliged to use it (when, for example, telling the truth about the economy would cause a run on the currency). In science, up to recent times, there is no circumstance in which a deliberate falsehood is justifiable. It requires at a minimum being drummed out of one’s learned society. (I referred to this essay on the importance of scientific ethics and their relationship to practical politics the other day, but didn’t include the link. I think it one of the best essays of its type I’ve ever read. Ron P.)

Excerpt: The global economy is heading for a massive amount of trouble in the months ahead. Right now we are seeing the beginning of a credit crunch that is shaping up to be very reminiscent of what we saw back in 2008. Investors and big corporations are pulling huge amounts of money out of European banks and nobody wants to lend to those banks right now. (Yeah, I know. Another dismal report and many will think "there he goes again." I must admit something: I don’t feel all that dismal about the failure of the euro zone. And no, it's not Schadenfreude (ie, gloating). It is really a mixture of 2 things. My European friends hate the EU because it was foisted on them by stealth, it is costing them tons of money, it is hurting jobs, it is killing sovereignty, and bringing general angst. The people signed on to the EU because they were given to understand that it would not hurt national sovereignty and would basically boost the economies of all nations. All lies, as everyone now knows. I had been warning of the duplicity of the EU and their total disregard for national issues and people for a long time, even before this WND article: So my feeling about this is: 1--I am vindicated. I told you so. 2--The other shoe has dropped -- or is about to. After waiting for so long for an inevitable disaster to happen, it is sort of like a man on death row being told his time is up. At least you know it's over. But on the other hand, I am still optimistic because now the evil men who dreamed up this scam are flopping about like landed fish and haven't a clue or an excuse. They took others for fools and now they turn out to be the real fools. Once the majority see that they never had a clue and the whole thing was a scam from the get-go, there is at least hope that fragrant freedom will eventually rear its head again on the Old Continent. And hopefully that sweet smell will be wafted over the Great Pond. --Don Hank)

The Night Before Occupy Christmas
Funny parody. ~Bob.

Iranian hard-liners storm British Embassy, residential compound
Excerpt: Student hard-liners stormed the British Embassy compound on Tuesday to protest tough new sanctions against Iran, replacing the Union Jack with an Islamic flag and chanting “Death to England” as they hurled satellite dishes from the roof of a security building to the ground below. (Paging Jimmy Carter. ~Bob.)

Tehran Embassy: like 1979 all over again - by James Delingpole
Excerpt: What is happening now is happening for a very particular reason: because the West has lost its authority in the Middle East. By attempting to appease it it has shown the weakness which the Islamic world despises and which it is now exploiting with vicious glee. The rot set in, of course, with President Obama's infamous Cairo Surrender Monkey speech, in which, inter alia, he apologised for the crusades, pandered to the Islamist notion of the Ummah, referred to the 9/11 killers not as "terrorists" but "violent extremists", and gave the strong impression that it really wasn't any of America's business which crazed Islamist theocracies run by ravening lunatics hell bent on destroying the State of Israel had nuclear weapons and which ones didn't.

Washington Post Blogger Asks for Dirt About Newt
Excerpt: What would one expect from a newspaper that only five months ago called for readers to sift through former Alaska governor Sarah Palin's email messages?

U.K.: 3500 girls in London at risk for female genital mutilation each year
Excerpt: The elephant in the room here is the role of Islamic jurisprudence in perpetuating the practice: "Hanbalis hold that circumcision of women is not obligatory but sunna [commendable according to the word or example of Muhammad, but not obligatory], while Hanafis consider it a mere courtesy to the husband." - Umdat al-Salik e4.3. The Shafi'i school of jurisprudence, which is present or dominant in many of the countries mentioned below, holds it to be obligatory.

Only 225 People Turn Up For Free Tickets To Obama Event In Pennsylvania - by Jammie
Excerpt: The failed president will be appearing in Joe Biden’s hometown tomorrow for another campaign appearance on the public dime, and in a sign how hugely unpopular he is only a couple hundred Obamatons lined up to get their free tickets. I guess they’ll have to bus in some unions goons to make it look as if he’s still got support.

Deputy A.G. behind 'Fast and Furious' met with President Obama four times during the height of the operation
Excerpt: Item 1: In March of 2011, President Obama denied knowledge of 'Operation Fast and Furious' -- the Justice Department program that sent thousands of murder weapons to Mexican drug cartels. (Where are White House Tapes when you need them? ~Bob.)

MPAC Proud to Host Radical Tunisian Leader
Excerpt: A radical Tunisian Islamist leader, denied an entry visa into the United States during the 1990s, is scheduled to make two appearances on Capitol Hill Tuesday.
Rachid Ghannouchi, leader of Tunisia's Ennahda Party, will attend a forum on the Arab Spring at the Cannon Office Building, an announcement from the event's sponsor, the Muslim Public Affairs Council's (MPAC) said. He'll also attend a special dinner Tuesday evening. (The Germans could have won WWII if they had invented “Nazophobia” to intimidate us with. ~Bob.)

Who’s Blowing Up Iran?
Excerpt: Another week, another explosion at or near an Iranian military installation (or is it a nuclear research facility?). As usual, the regime doesn’t know what to say. The mullahcracy is so intensely divided that different “spokesmen” from different ministries/news outlets/cults/mafias put out different versions.

Gallup: Obama Tanking Among Independents
Excerpt: Obama's approval rating has decreased among all six partisan/ideology groups Gallup tracks on a regular basis since January, but it has dropped the most -- 10 percentage points, from 40% to 30% -- among pure independents. These are the roughly 14% of national adults who neither identify with one of the two major parties nor indicate a leaning.

‘Down Goes Willard’: Newt Gingrich storms South Carolina.
Excerpt: Newt Gingrich wowed hundreds of conservative voters in this sleepy coastal town on Monday, all of whom braved the rain to attend a town-hall meeting with the latest Republican frontrunner. “We will be back, we will rebuild the country we love,” Gingrich said near the end of his hour-long presentation. “You ain’t seen nothing yet.”

Donald Berwick Bows Out
Excerpt: Berwick was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for his involvement in Tony Blair’s ill-fated efforts to improve Britain’s National Health Service. It was during this period that the NHS set up its notorious health-care-rationing board, the National Institute for Clinical Excellence, which routinely stymies the use of life-saving treatments in order to save money. … “Please don’t put your faith in market forces,” said Berwick. “It is a popular idea: that Adam Smith’s invisible hand would do a better job of designing care than leaders with plans can do. I do not agree.

Excerpt: Given Climategate II, no noticeable heating of the planet during the last decade, and all sorts of questionable research on supposed problems like polar bear population declines and Himalayan glacier melting — not to mention the wind and solar debacles here and in Europe — the man-made-global-warming movement is about done for now. We sometimes forget that the fad gained its traction during the Bush years, fueled in large part by the myth that a Texas Bible-thumper was going to prevent wise technocrats from saving the planet from the Neanderthals.

Illinois GOP: 'divorce' Chicago, make 51st state
Excerpt: Two Republican state legislators from downstate Illinois filed a proposal to "divorce" Illinois from its traditional metropolis, arguing that Chicago should comprise its own state rather than overshadow the more conservative political positions held around Illinois. "At the end of this fiscal year we'll have $5 billion of unpaid Medicaid bills," State Rep. Bill Mitchell said during a press conference last week. "With the president's Obamacare coming down on the state of Illinois and expanding Medicaid further, it's going to put an additional $2 billion on the taxpayers of the state of Illinois . . . just like a divorce, there's irreconcilable differences between the state of Illinois and Cook County; [they] want to spend money we don't have."

Newt Gingrich - Exposes America's Cancer
On the courts. ~Bob.

The Iron Lady - by Daniel Hannan, Human Events
Excerpt: To understand the magnitude of Margaret Thatcher’s achievement, you have to recall the calamity that preceded it. It is difficult, these days, to convey the unremitting awfulness of 1970s Britain: the pessimism, the rancour, the double-digit inflation, the power cuts, the three-day working week, the regulation of prices and incomes, the IMF bailout. It felt as if we were finished as a country. Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, we had been outperformed by every European economy.

Lame-duck Barney Frank Joins Effort to Repeal Obamacare Death Panels
Excerpt: Massachusetts Democratic Rep. Barney Frank announced on Tuesday his support for the repeal of the Independent Payment Advisory Board, a significant portion of President Obama’s health care overhaul. Frank, who announced Monday that he would retire at the end of his current term in office, became the 12th Democrat, and the 212th member of the House, to co-sponsor Tennessee Republican Rep. Phil Roe’s bill aimed at repealing the IPAB.

Gingrich Immigration Plan a Real, Workable Solution - by Robert Laurie
Excerpt: By denying illegal immigrants the right to vote, you acknowledge that they have broken the law by circumventing legal immigration procedures. By allowing them to stay in the country, with their family, you show compassion and take wind from the sails of the pro-illegal political movement. At the same time, you dash the hopes and dreams of cynical Democrats who see amnesty as the ultimate votes-for-citizenship quid pro quo. More importantly, you force liberals into the uncomfortable position of voting against the measure.

Orange-faced: Second Coaching Legend May Be Undone
Excerpt: [Syracuse head basketball coach Jim] Boeheim stood fast behind his old friend [assistant basketball coach Bernie Fine], but was forced into an embarrassing mea culpa over the weekend when ESPN aired an audio tape of a conversation between Davis and Fine’s wife, Laurie — a tape that ESPN had in its possession for almost a decade. In that conversation, which Davis recorded, Laurie Fine admitted to knowing that her husband had molested Davis while also revealing that she had sex with the former ballboy once he turned 18.

Former Business Partner: Ginger White Never Mentioned Herman Cain
Excerpt: The female bodybuilder who once ran a bicycle business with latest Herman Cain accuser Ginger White says the Atlanta woman never mentioned the Republican presidential candidate, who she says was her lover for 13 years. "His name has never come up," said Kimberly Vay, who told ABC News that she and White were former business partners.

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