Saturday, September 5, 2009

Political Digest September 5, 2009

From a correspondent
Since Democrats and the Media think Obama is God, doesn’t his speech to school kids violate separation of church and state?

Next summer’s blockbuster movie
The Community Organizer versus the Organized Communities!

The Inhumanity of Being Humane to Terrorists
A must read. I couldn’t agree more. Guess that makes me a bad person. There goes my invite to the next brie and white wine party in Hyde Park.

How to Win in Afghanistan
Excerpt: No one wants to see troops risking injury and death in ground combat. It would be nice if it weren't necessary. But it is. We tried the offshore strategy in the 1990s when Afghanistan became a stronghold of al Qaeda. Even after 9/11 we still stuck to a minimalist approach. Recall the failure to capture Osama bin Laden at Tora Bora because we wouldn't commit enough American troops. As recently as 2008 there were only two U.S. Brigade Combat Teams in the entire country (a brigade has roughly 4,000 soldiers), compared to 20 in Iraq at the height of the surge. There are now five brigades engaged in combat in Afghanistan. For most of the Bush administration, we relied on unmanned Predator drones and Special Forces to keep the enemy at bay. Afghan Security Forces were too small and ineffective to pick up the slack. Even today there are only 173,000 Afghan soldiers and police compared to 600,000 in Iraq. The result: The Taliban, which had been routed in 2001, staged a disheartening resurgence.

Guards fired
What happened to the Marines?

Is the world just plain stupid?
Good questions about the Middle East. The answer to the title question is: Yes.

Then & Now
Democrats didn’t think Bush talking to kids was a good idea.

Obama, the Mortal,_the_mortal
Excerpt: Accordingly, Obama unveiled his plans for a grand makeover of the American system, animating that vision by enacting measure after measure that greatly enlarged state power, government spending and national debt. Not surprisingly, these measures engendered powerful popular skepticism that burst into tea-party town-hall resistance. Obama's reaction to that resistance made things worse. Obama fancies himself tribune of the people, spokesman for the grass roots, harbinger of a new kind of politics from below that would upset the established lobbyist special-interest order of Washington. Yet faced with protests from a real grass-roots movement, his party and his supporters called it a mob -- misinformed, misled, irrational, angry, unhinged, bordering on racist. All this while the administration was cutting backroom deals with every manner of special interest -- from drug companies to auto unions to doctors -- in which favors worth billions were quietly and opaquely exchanged

Honor killings on the rise
Nothing to do with Islam, of course. Probably misguided Presbyterians.

A GOP Senator Looking to Meet Halfway
Here’s the problem. Republicans don’t want to give Obama a “victory” that will strengthen him for the 2010 mid-term elections. Democrats don’t want to considered a couple of pretty good bills by republicans, because they don’t want Republicans to get any credit going into the midterm elections. Statist (leftwing) Democrats insist on a “public option” because, back by tax dollars and exempt from state mandates, it will soon put private insurance out of business because it will be cheaper based on those two factors. They want a single-payer government system, like Canada and Europe, no matter what they say. Republicans will only support a plan that lowers the cost of medical care through reducing liability insurance costs and reducing defensive medicine—tort reform. Democrats, who are led by lawyers several layers deep and get big contributions from trial lawyers, aren’t going to support a plan that reduces costs if it takes dollars out of lawyers pockets. Stalemate.

Iranian Blogger Does About-Face
Family Skeptical After Ex-Vice President Alters His View of Election From Prison
Excerpt: The headline on the last blog item that former Iranian vice president Mohammad Ali Abtahi published before his June 15 arrest -- "It was a huge swindling" -- left no doubt that he believed that his country's presidential election had been stolen. His more recent entries, from prison, have taken a different view. "The majority of detainees know there was no real cheating," the onetime opposition leader wrote in a recent posting. "Whoever understands present-day Iran realizes that the street riots are against Iran's glory, history and people," he wrote in another. (Guess Iran didn’t get the “torture doesn’t work” memo.)

Why the Stimulus Failed
Excerpt: Conservatives have correctly declared President Obama's $787 billion "stimulus" a flop. In a January report, White House economists predicted the bill would create (not merely save) 3.3 million jobs. Since then, 2.8 million jobs have been lost, pushing unemployment toward 10 percent, says Brian Riedl, a research fellow at the Heritage Foundation.

Van Jones linked to “Truther” movement
There were a lot more Democrat “truthers” than Republican “birthers.” The White House denied it, but the evidence is otherwise. But he’s black—can’t fire him.

Distortions -- or Truths?
Excerpt: We should have "an honest debate" on health care, said Barack Obama in his Aug. 22 radio address, "not one dominated by willful misrepresentations and outright distortions." Among the "phony claims" made against the House bill, says the president, are that it provides funding for abortions, guarantees coverage for illegal aliens, contains "death panels" and represents a federal takeover of the health care system. Is Obama right? Are critics misleading and frightening folks with falsehoods about Obamacare?

America's Debt Disaster
America's debt crisis is not a hazy menace in the distance. The national debt costs taxpayers $500 million in interest payments every day. That's half a billion dollars up in smoke -- yesterday, today, tomorrow, and the next day. And where does that money go? Much of it is shipped to foreign investors, including China's central bank. Experts say we owe China about $800 billion, but no one knows for sure. The Communist Party buys Treasury securities through anonymous middlemen, and refuses to divulge the full extent of its loans, calling them a "state secret."

Local schools shy away from Obama's speech
Excerpt: PUSD Superintendent Kevin Kapp said, "The President's speech next week is a perfect example of a good idea gone crazy." The White House provided schools with supporting materials and lesson plans. Officials are objecting to the lesson plans. "This simple speech, which I thought was a wonderful idea until I read the supporting material and lesson plans moved from a good and simple idea to an overly political event. I am offended that the White House would send out 'lesson plans' for a speech by our President," Kapp said.

Congressman on HCR
Worth viewing.

Harry Jekyll and Harry Hyde
Excerpt: In the Aug. 6 edition of the Las Vegas Sun, readers saw an op-ed by Harry Reid. “I have never taken up the Washington hobby of pointing fingers for political gain,” reassured Nevada’s eminently reasonable, bipartisan, four-term senator. A few hours later, Mr. Reid appeared for the national press, armed with a piece of Astroturf, to berate town-hall protestors as captive to "Internet rumor mongers and insurance rackets." The Republican Party "is run by a talk-show host," snapped Washington's eminently angry and partisan majority leader. Welcome to Mr. Reid's bipolar world, which isn't about to fuse any time soon

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