Thursday, February 16, 2012

Political Digest for February 16, 2012

The Old Jarhead Blog: Bringing you news and information the MSM is too busy covering American Idol, celebrity affairs and sensational missing person cases to cover. Please forward to friends who need to be informed.

Best older posts for new blog readers

Excerpt: There are two conservatives for every liberal in America. That’s the message of a recent David Brooks column as well as a Gallup survey. I think the imbalance is much starker. I would guess there are four conservatives for every liberal. Maybe even more. Here’s a test I invite you to take. Watch C-Span’s morning call-in show and listen to what people who phone in on the “Democrat” or “liberal” line have to say. When is the last time you heard a caller say, “We should all pay higher taxes so that the government can provide us with universal day care”? Or how about, “We should all pay higher taxes so the government can provide us with universal long term care”? I bet you can’t remember ever hearing that. Here is what I suspect you will hear: Teachers complaining that teachers aren’t paid enough. Union members complaining about competition from workers overseas. Senior citizens whining about the meagerness of Social Security or Medicare benefits. Minority callers advocating more affirmative action. What is the common denominator of these comments? Self-interest.

Still a Better Deal: Private Investment vs. Social Security by Michael D. Tanner
Excerpt: However, private capital investment remains remarkably safe over the long term. Despite recent declines in the stock market, a worker who had invested privately over the past 40 years would have still earned an average yearly return of 6.85 percent investing in the S&P 500, 3.46 percent from corporate bonds, and 2.44 percent from government bonds. If workers who retired in 2011 had been allowed to invest the employee half of the Social Security payroll tax over their working lifetime, they would retire with more income than if they relied on Social Security.

Is U.S. Health Spending on Another Planet? By Christopher J. Conover
Excerpt: The Occupy Wall Street protests have sparked the observation that those earning more than $34,000 per year fall in the top 1 percent of global income. The advantages of being born in America are extraordinary by any measure. But the global distribution of health expenditures is tilted much more in the direction of the United States than the distribution of income (figure 1.7a). From a global perspective, the U.S. health system is massive, accounting for more than one-third of an estimated $6.4 trillion in health expenditures across the world in 2009.

Mitt Romney faces major test in Michigan primary, once thought an easy win
Excerpt: Once thought to be an easy win for native son Mitt Romney, the Michigan primary has instead turned into one of the stiffest tests for the Republican presidential front-runner — and an unexpected opportunity for the surging campaign of Rick Santorum.

Media Matters tax status
Excerpt: One central requirement before an organization like Media Matters can achieve the gold-standard nonprofit status — known by its place in the tax code, Section 501(c)(3) — is that it may not “attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities” or “participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates.

11 immigrants arrested in 2007 raids in New Haven win $350K settlement with feds, won't be deported
Excerpt: Almost five years after their homes were raided by immigration agents, 11 New Haven residents will split a monetary payment and will not be deported in what their lawyers are calling an unprecedented settlement with the government. The 11 were among more than 30 people who were arrested by Immigration and Custom Enforcement agents on June 6, 2007 in New Haven.

Mich. gun advocates support Starbucks' open-carry policy
Excerpt: "Whether you carry or not doesn't matter," said Janice Robinson of St. Clair Shores, who organized Tuesday's support for Starbucks. "It's supporting your Second Amendment rights."

Fake Cancer Drug Found in U.S.
Excerpt: The maker of the widely used Avastin cancer drug said Tuesday that it is warning doctors, hospitals and patient groups that a counterfeit version of the medicine has been found in the U.S. Tests of counterfeit vials of Avastin showed that they didn't contain the active ingredient in Roche Holding AG's intravenous drug, according to the Swiss company's Genentech unit. It isn't clear how much of the counterfeit product was distributed in the U.S. or whether it has caused any harm. (While counterfeiting drugs may be “new” in the USA, it’s not in the rest of the world. A famous spy novel that became a movie, The Third Man, used it as a plot device in the post-war Germany of the late 1940s (fake penicillin). If these guys had done a better job of faking the packaging, they might’ve gotten away with it for years. “Gee, the patient just didn’t respond to treatment. Sorry.” Which gives us another category of low-life to add to the mandatory death-penalty group of those who are simply too dangerous to the rest of us to leave alive. Ron P.)

The Progressive Legacy: Part II By Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: "Often wrong but never in doubt" is a phrase that summarizes much of what was done by Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson, the two giants of the Progressive era, a century ago. Their legacy is very much alive today, both in their mindset -- including government picking winners and losers in the economy and interventionism in foreign countries -- as well as specific institutions created during the Progressive era, such as the income tax and the Federal Reserve System. Like so many Progressives today, Theodore Roosevelt felt no need to study economics before intervening in the economy.

Brown's campaign relies on home-grown support By Rick Gleason
excerpt: Though the general election is still many months away, voters in Massachusetts are already casting their votes in the primary for the U.S. Senate race. Analyzing Federal Election Commission (FEC) reports for this race shows a very interesting trend. If one counts the total number of "Itemized Individual Donations" each candidate reports, Sen. Scott Brown carries a 51 percent lead over Elizabeth Warren. Further, 70 percent of Brown's "Itemized Individual Donations" originate in Massachusetts, whereas Warren only sees 37 percent of these donations coming from Massachusetts. It's quite clear to me that "We the People of Massachusetts" individually support Brown whereas a majority of out-of-staters support Warren.

Obama Mulls 80 Percent Disarmament of Nuclear Arsenal
Excerpt: The Obama administration is weighing options for sharp new cuts to the U.S. nuclear force, including a reduction of up to 80 percent in the number of deployed weapons, The Associated Press has learned. Even the most modest option now under consideration would be an historic and politically bold disarmament step in a presidential election year, although the plan is in line with President Barack Obama's 2009 pledge to pursue the elimination of nuclear weapons. (And the transformation of America into a second-rate country continues... –Larry. Alas, I don’t think we will be able to stop at “second rate.” Maybe not at “country.” ~Bob.)

Obama's Friends Win Big in Budget
Excerpt: You don't need to log on to President Barack Obama's Facebook page to find out who his friends are, and you don't need to read tea leaves, gaze into a crystal ball, or consult a psychic to learn where his priorities lie. No, you only have to take a look at his 2013 budget, just released on Monday, to see what kind of company the president keeps and to what extent he will go to lend his pals a helping hand. The folks seated at the president's head table haven't changed much in the past few years -- the only difference is how much is being served up in the taxpayer-funded buffet.

AU forces capture rebel strongholds near Somali capital
Excerpt: African Union troops launched an offensive against al Qaeda-linked Somali rebels and captured strongholds to the south of the capital Mogadishu, the AU force said on Tuesday. The Burundian contingent of the AU's peacekeeping force (AMISOM) overpowered the rebels after a fierce gun battle in which 10 rebels were killed and two AU soldiers injured, said the acting AU troops commander, Brigadier General Audace Nduwumunsi.

Meanwhile, the UN Is Planning Your Future — All of It
Excerpt: The United Nations hasn’t stopped the carnage in Syria, hasn’t stopped Iran’s race for nuclear weapons, and so far hasn’t even managed to produce financial disclosure forms for its top officials that actually disclose anything about their finances. (For instance, here’s the UN “disclosure” form for the head of the UN Environment Program, Achim Steiner.)

A New Anti-American “Peace” Movement by Posted by John Perazzo
Excerpt: As the political air hangs heavy with uncertainty about whether the U.S. or Israel might launch an attack against the nuclear facilities of Iran—a nation whose president has pledged to “wipe off this disgraceful blot [Israel] from the face of the Islamic world”—the American “peace” movement is once again doing what it was born to do: condemn the United States and Israel while giving a free pass to the genocidal murderers who seek to annihilate both nations. One of the most noteworthy recent newcomers to this movement is Chicago Mass Action (CMA), an activist group that engages in street demonstrations protesting America’s alleged racism, imperialism, and fascism.

Democrats Richer Than Romney
Excerpt: Democrats who have been a bit too obscenely eager to damn Mitt Romney as Mr. Moneybags may want to reconsider. The media has spent a great deal of time touting the claim that Romney would be the richest president in half a century. But Romney’s net worth of approximately 200 million dollars would not even make him the richest senator. Senators Kohl, Warner and Kerry all beat out Romney in the wealth sweepstakes. And they’re all Democrats. For all the news stories about his wealth, if Romney ran for Congress, he wouldn’t even make it as the wealthiest member of the House of Representatives.

Excerpt: International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that armed men raided a church in Ouargla, Algeria on Wednesday tearing down the gate to the church’s compound and damaging the iron crucifix on the church’s roof. The Protestant Church of Ouargla in eastern Algeria was vandalized by an unknown number of armed men late Wednesday evening, the Protestant Church of Algeria (EPA) told ICC. After breaking through the gate, the church was ransacked and the crucifix rising high above the premises was dismantled. (Well, you must remember that openly displaying a Cross is against Shari’a Law, endorsed by American courts and the NYT. ~Bob.)

Muslim marriage counsellor labelled ‘satan’ for sex comments
Excerpt: A UAE-based marriage counsellor faced a storm of criticism last night after she said married Muslim women should enjoy sex with their husbands. Ahead of Valentine’s Day, today, Emirati Wedad Lootah told Muslim women they should not be afraid of enjoying intercourse and that there was a misconception that Islam forbids married women from enjoying lovemaking.

1st Female AF Air Combat Vet in Run for Congress
Excerpt: Before all that, in 1994, McSally was the Air Force's first woman to fly in combat. She said her experience in being in the spotlight and dealing with public scrutiny have helped prepare her for this campaign. McSally has been a registered Republican since June 2006, according to Pima County Recorder's Office records. When asked if she considers herself moderate or conservative, she said, "I consider myself a leader." ("I consider myself a leader." Well all right then. Maybe we're getting somewhere. MasterGuns)

 Excerpt: The full body scanners that President Obama last night authorized to be rolled out in airports across the country at a cost of over $1 billion dollars not only produce detailed pictures of your genitals, but once inverted some of those images also display your naked body in full living color. And you don’t need to be a graphics wizard using a $600 software suite like Photoshop to pull off the trick – inverting a photo is a simple process that takes one click and is an option available even in the most basic image editing software. (Well, if they want to look at my over-weight, 66-year-old body, they can knock themselves out. I can see how a 16-year-old girl might object though. ~Bob.)

Excerpt: On Tuesday Rep. Darrell Issa, chairman of the House committee on Oversight and Government Reform, took a major step toward holding Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress for his failure to provide subpoenaed documents and other information about Operation Fast and Furious.

The underestimation of Rick Santorum and how powerful a candidate and problem he could be for Barack Obama
Excerpt: I have seen a strange spirit of fear and anxiety throughout this nomination fight. Those fearing that whomever gets the nod, how the vaunted Obama machine will destroy our candidates. Then there is the hand-wringing over potential head-to-head polling matchups of each of the candidates vs. Obama. Worst of all, the nastiness and vitriol between Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich has done much damage to their public image and makes one wonder if either of these guys is really cut out to be president.

Report: Russia faced major nuclear disaster in 2011
Excerpt: Russia came close to nuclear disaster in late December when a blaze engulfed a nuclear-powered submarine carrying atomic weapons, a leading Russian magazine reported, contradicting official assurances that it was not armed.

In Obama’s America, chicken nuggets are healthy
Excerpt: Want further evidence that this is not your founding fathers’ America? TheDC’s Matthew Boyle depresses with his report: “A North Carolina elementary school forced a preschool student to eat cafeteria chicken nuggets for lunch on Jan. 30 after officials reportedly determined that her homemade meal wasn’t up to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s standards for healthfulness, according to a report from the Carolina Journal. The newspaper reported that the four-year-old girl brought a turkey and cheese sandwich, a banana, potato chips and apple juice in her packed lunch from home. That meal didn’t meet with approval from the government agent who was on site inspecting kids’ lunches that day. (In what sense can we still describe ourselves as a “free people”? ~Bob.)

Obama includes Canada in his `King of World’ territory
Excerpt: Canadians, watching the Fundamental Transformation of the United States of America, from the safety of over-the-border observation, consider themselves too distant from the expanding Marxist policies of the President Barack Obama regime.

Iran helping al Qaeda plot attack on West, intelligence sources say
Excerpt: Iran and al Qaeda's core leadership under Ayman al Zawahiri have established an operational relationship amid fears the terror group is planning an attack against the West. There are concerns such an attack, possibly targeting the London Olympics later this year, would be in revenge for the killing of Osama bin Laden by the US last year.

Excerpt: Four free market advocacy groups filed a 39-page amicus brief to the Supreme Court this week supporting the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals decision that the individual mandate in President Obama’s health care reform law is unconstitutional. The groups are the Pacific Research Institute, Benjamin Rush Society, Docs 4 Patient Care and the Galen Institute.

The BBC is Killing Britain's Recovery - by James Delingpole, Telegraph UK
Excerpt: The BBC is not a benign organisation. Indeed, it probably bears greater responsibility than any other institution for Britain's cultural, moral, intellectual and economic decline. Even if you were just to consider its outrageous, misleading propagandising over climate change, you would have more than reason enough to scrap the licence fee.

TheDC top ten: Interesting nuggets from Media Matters’ 2010 tax records By David Martosko
Excerpt: A fascinating paper trail created by Media Matters For America and its lobbying affiliate, Media Matters Action Network, showcases the wealthy political machine that The Daily Caller has been exploring this week.TheDC has obtained copies of both organizations’ tax returns from 2010 (neither has filed a 2011 return yet), and Media Matters For America’s audited financial statement from the same year. The documents are chock full of insights into what can happen when wealthy left-wing donors lavish no-strings-attached cash on partisan activists.

Secrecy Surrounds Conference to Train Cops on ‘Political Violence’: The government won't speak about the mysterious American Muslim Advisory Council.
Excerpt: Activists in Tennessee are asking about a taxpayer-sponsored terror training conference scheduled for later this month, as federal and state agencies have enacted a high level of secrecy regarding the two-day event and its scheduled speakers. The terrorism conference is being sponsored by the Middle Tennessee U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Nashville Joint Terrorism Task Force, and is being held at the offices of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation on February 27 and 28.

Colorado student quits high school choir over Islamic song praising 'Allah'
Excerpt: "I don’t want to come across as a bigot or a racist, but I really don’t feel it is appropriate for students in a public high school to be singing an Islamic worship song,” Harper told KREX-TV. "This is worshipping another God, and even worshipping another prophet ... I think there would be a lot of outrage if we made a Muslim choir say Jesus Christ is the only truth." (Liberals believe in separation of church and state. Mosque and state, not so much. ~Bob.)

She was ahead of her time, almost prophetic in her writings. –Dave. "When you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing; when you see that money is flowing to those who deal not in goods, but in favors; when you see that men get rich more easily by graft than by work, and your laws no longer protect you against them, but protect them against you…you may know that your society is doomed." --Ayn Rand

Excerpt: There are a lot of new twists to the old story of massive demonstrations in Greece. This is the first time in my life (I first went to Greece in 1973) that I can remember Greek rioting and demonstrations that were not anti-American. Oh, there have been a few contorted efforts to blame the Wall Street “Jews” for the 2008 meltdown that in turn supposedly called in Greek credit, but it is a half-hearted attempt, and for the most part the Greeks seem bewildered that they cannot properly fault the U.S. for much of anything in their present disaster — so unlike the old days of the 1967 coup, the colonels, the Cold War, the American support for Israel, the oil boycotts of 1973, the 1974 Cyprus disaster, the bombing of a kindred Orthodox Milosevic, etc.

1 comment:

  1. Hi, Old Jarhead, and thank you!

    Here's a comment-and-question I'm asking of all the veterans who have blogs.

    I had a really frightening thought the other night: Just suppose Obama orders the military to do something that's beyond his authority as commander in chief, or beyond the constitutional limits of the power of the armed forces.
    It seems to me that our people have only two choices: follow their oath to preserve the Consitution, or follow orders from the C-in-C. This would be an swful dilemma, a bit like that in which Robert E. Lee found himself in 1861.
    What do you think they will do?

    Even scarier: do you think Obama might order our Armed Forces people to take an oath of personal loyalty to him (as Hitler did), and if he did -- I wouldn't put it past him -- what would our troops do?

    I will greatly appreciate any thoughts you may have on this. That man scares the hell out of me.