Friday, December 2, 2011

Political Digest for December 2, 2011

I post articles because I think they are of interest. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree (or disagree) with every—or any—opinion in the posted article. Help your friends and relatives stay informed by passing the digest on. In some cases I post things sent to me by readers I might not have posted on my own, to get ideas circulating.

Free PDF Copy of The Coming Collapse of the American Republic.

You might be an
Occupy Wall Street
protester if…

Tracy Lawrence, Notary Public Who Blew The Whistle On Massive Foreclosure Fraud, Found Dead
Excerpt: Earlier this month, Lawrence came forward and admitted to the Nevada Attorney General's Office that she notarized 25,000 fraudulent documents for Lender Processing Services, a Florida company used by most major banks to process home repossessions. The documents were filed with the Clark County Recorder's Office between 2005 and 2008, The Los Angeles Times reported. (Goes with my recommendation yesterday of Reckless Endangerment. ~Bob. The subprime mortgage crisis that ultimately led to the current near-collapse of the euro zone and the EU (which may be a good thing in the end) was due to a complex of issues, but in large part to shady and illegal dealings on the part of mortgage companies and banks as aided and abetted by government, which refused to do its supervisory job. The above report is the tip of the iceberg. Both the US government and banks -- not to mention unwary buyers who were convinced by both entities that they could afford things they couldn't -- were part of the perverse web that brought down the world economy. Ordinary Americans may have contributed peripherally (with their naïveté), but they did not cause this crisis. The banks in league with corrupt government (see Barney Frank) wrought this mischief on the world. It is therefore cosmic justice that the Fed feels indebted to Europe. But if the Fed wants to help, they should shell out of their own pockets and stop tampering via public funds (bailouts), quantitative easing (and its equivalents such as the proposed aid package to European central banks), borrowing debt to pay debt, and other sleight of hand schemes. --Don Hank)

Excerpt: Senate Republicans have proposed wringing cost savings out of the federal work force and safety net programs to pay for an extension of the current payroll tax cut. In a further sign that the debate had shifted to how to, instead of whether, to extend payroll tax relief, Senate Republicans would take a page from President Obama’s own fiscal commission and freeze salaries for federal civilian employees for three years. That would amount to a five-year pay freeze in total, given that a two-year policy is already in effect. … Republicans also incorporated means testing for a host of federal programs in their proposal, including for food stamps, unemployment benefits and Medicare.

Angry White Man: The bigoted past of Ron Paul.
2008 piece. Leftist publication. But brutal. ~Bob.

UK foreign secretary calls for 'all Afghan groups' to attend peace talks
Excerpt: Next week's International Afghanistan Conference in Bonn, Germany, should include representatives of all the political groups in that war-torn nation, William Hague, the U.K.'s foreign secretary, argues in an opinion article published by The Hill. (Margaret of Valois: "In love, as in war, a fortress that parleys is half taken.”)

Gingrich's hand ‘always six inches from the self-destruct button’
Republican lawmakers on Capitol Hill are nervous about Newt Gingrich’s rise in the polls, with one member saying, “Newt’s hand is always six inches from the self-destruct button.” The legislator, who served with Gingrich in the House, is one of many who are concerned the Georgia Republican will capture the 2012 presidential nomination. The member requested anonymity to avoid finding himself crosswise with a candidate now considered to have a real shot at facing President Obama in the general election. (Notice how the media, which deplores the “politics of personal destruction,” is always happy to help with the anonymous political knife in the back from folks too cowardly to put their names to their thoughts? And you have to read the comment from “Frank,” who said Newt tries to appear smart by using big words like “history.” ~Bob.)

Mitt Romney struggles to find a strategy to combat Newt Gingrich’s surge
Excerpt: All along, everything has gone according to Mitt Romney’s plan. … But they didn’t count on a late and strong rise by Newt Gingrich.

Infrastructure Funding: Taking the Wrong Path
Excerpt: A recent American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) report estimated the United States will need to spend $2.2 trillion over the next few years to bring the country's infrastructure to acceptable levels. A $2 trillion projected estimate for infrastructure sounds daunting, but it is important to examine what planners consider "infrastructure," says Peter Swanson, a Hatton W. Sumners Scholar at the National Center for Policy Analysis.

Joblessness and Regulation: The "Mass Layoff" Fallacy
Excerpt: In a recent Gallup poll, the "myth" cited by Harry Reid seems very real:
Twenty-two percent of respondents stated that government regulation was their primary concern. Fifteen percent of respondents cited consumer confidence. A mere 12 percent pointed to "lack of consumer demand."

Carrier IQ: Researcher Trevor Eckhart Outs Creepy, Hidden App Installed On Smartphones (VIDEO)
Excerpt: In a 17-minute video posted Monday on YouTube, Trevor Eckhart shows how the software – known as Carrier IQ – logs every text message, Google search and phone number typed on a wide variety of smart phones - including HTC, Blackberry, Nokia* and others - and reports them to the mobile phone carrier. The application, which is labeled on Eckhart’s HTC smartphone as "HTC IQ Agent," also logs the URL of websites searched on the phone, even if the user intends to encrypt that data using a URL that begins with "HTTPS," Eckhart said. The software always runs when Android operating system is running and users are unable to stop it, Eckhart said in the video. "Why is this not opt-in and why is it so hard to fully remove?" Eckhart wrote at the end of the video. (Love your “smart phone?” That may change if you’ve been visiting sites or sending/receiving texts that could be embarrassing or illegal. It looks like it touches every smart phone platform. Ron P.)

Will the President Protect Religious Rights?
Excerpt: Sometimes the White House gets the easy questions wrong. On Tuesday, White House press secretary Jay Carney was asked about a controversial mandate stemming from Obamacare that would require religious employers to provide insurance coverage for birth control despite religious objections.

Excerpt: I love Michele Bachmann! Which is why it has pained me to see how badly her handlers have misguided her campaign. Now, with Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich leading the pack, I believe Congresswoman Bachmann has one last chance to reignite her candidacy.

Central Bank Chief Hints at Stepping Up Euro Support
Excerpt: Mario Draghi, the president of the European Central Bank, hinted Thursday that the bank might be willing to step up its support for the European economy if political leaders take decisive steps to prevent future debt crises. Mr. Draghi stopped well short of offering a European version of the massive securities purchases that the Federal Reserve has used to try to stimulate the U.S. economy.

Obama’s Silver Demographic Linings
Excerpt: Obama won 365 electoral votes in 2008, taking prizes in both traditional swing states like Ohio and Florida and newer battlegrounds such as North Carolina and Virginia. Recent history suggests Obama starts his reelection bid with at least 196 electoral votes in 15 blue states and the District of Columbia, while the eventual GOP nominee likely can count on 180 votes from 22 red states. Of the remaining 13, 11 are true swing states and account for 162 electoral votes. Obama needs 74 of those to secure a second term. Doing so means cobbling together a few western states trending Democratic, like Nevada, Colorado, and New Mexico, with traditional Rust Belt battlegrounds. (Isn’t it amazing how the picture changes depending on where you look at it from? Ron P.)

Nearly half German city to evacuate Sunday for defusing of WWII era bomb
Excerpt: About 45,000 residents of the German city of Koblenz, nearly half of the city’s population, are under evacuation orders Sunday following the discovery of what local officials said was one of the largest unexploded bombs ever found, believed to have been dropped by the British Royal Air Force during World War II. The nearly 4,000-pound bomb, packed with more than 3,000 pounds of explosives, as well as other unexploded ordnance, were discovered in the Rhine River, where the water levels have dropped significantly due to a lack of rain over the past few weeks, according to local authorities. (War—another of those gifts that keep on giving. Ron P. No, trying to solve your problems by letting an all-powerful government that totally controls the economy take charge. That’s the gift that keeps on giving. ~Bob.)

‘A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Climate Apocalypse’
Excerpt: That’s where the Climategate emails come in. First released on the eve of the Copenhagen climate summit two years ago and recently updated by a fresh batch, the “hide the decline” emails were an endless source of fun and lurid fascination for those of us who had never been convinced by the global-warming thesis in the first place. But the real reason they mattered is that they introduced a note of caution into an enterprise whose motivating appeal resided in its increasingly frantic forecasts of catastrophe. Papers were withdrawn; source material re-examined.

Newt Gingrich: Serial Hypocrisy
Ron Paul hit piece on Newt. ~Bob.

What Have The Central Banks Of The World Done Now?
Excerpt: The central banks of the world are acting as if it is 2008 all over again. Desperate times call for desperate measures, and right now the central bankers are pulling out all the stops. The Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank, the Bank of England, the Bank of Canada, the Bank of Japan and the Swiss National Bank have announced a coordinated plan to provide liquidity support to the global financial system.

Calif. ranks 46 in business friendliness
Why would you need jobs when you can borrow unlimited cash? Illinois is 40th, Wisconsin is 24th, but hoping to get into the bottom ten by recalling Scott Walker. ~Bob. Excerpt: California ranks 46th in business friendliness as measured by 44 different tax and public policy issues, according to a new study from the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council, a Virginia-based advocacy group.

Holder’s Criminality, Obama’s Hypocrisy
Excerpt: The disgraceful AG Eric Holder is getting really testy lately, lashing out at The Daily Caller for instigating members of Congress, Presidential candidates, and a couple of governors (all Republicans) into calling for his resignation over the deadly Operation Fast & Furious fiasco. Of course, the reporting on it from Sharyl Attkisson of CBS had pretty much EVERYTHING to do with these Republicans’ demands for either Holder falling on his proverbial sword and resigning or Obama throwing Holder under the bus and firing him.

Brown signs dozens of bills previously vetoed by Schwarzenegger
Excerpt: Dozens of bills vetoed during the final legislative session of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s administration have found new life with Jerry Brown in the governor’s office, a California Watch analysis has found. The bills range from high-profile initiatives like the California Dream Act, which grants financial aid to illegal immigrants attending public universities, to legislation that regulates tattoo parlors, increases penalties for animal abuse and prohibits the purchase of alcohol at self-service checkouts.

State pension systems see potential obstacles in Brown's reform plan
Excerpt: Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposal to overhaul public pensions in California may face legal hurdles and create some new costs, according to officials with the state’s two largest public retirement systems. More detail about the governor’s 12-point plan is needed to answer a large number of questions, according to analyses by officials with the California Public Employees’ Retirement System, known as CalPERS, and California State Teachers' Retirement System, known as CalSTRS.

U.S. Accuses Woman of Flight-School Visa Fraud
Excerpt: Federal authorities on Wednesday arrested a Southern California woman they said helped foreign nationals fraudulently apply for student visas to attend flight schools, a security concern since the 9/11 attacks. Karena Chuang, 28 years old, of Lake Elsinore, Calif., was arrested for allegedly overseeing a scheme that helped citizens of Egypt, Sri Lanka and Taiwan enter the U.S. for flight training at programs authorized to accept foreign students.

In the Race for the Senate, Democrats Show Signs of Life
Excerpt: As the Crystal Ball takes a fresh look at the race for control of the Senate, Republicans, unlike some of their predecessors during that sudden Senate vote in LBJ’s Senate, need to stay on the job, lest their seemingly inexorable march to a Senate majority be derailed. For months, Republicans have been the ones to expand the playing field of competitive Senate seats this year, most notably thanks to the retirements of Democratic Sens. Jeff Bingaman (NM) and Herb Kohl (WI), which turned safe Democratic seats into toss ups. But, thanks to smart candidate recruitment, Democrats might have a few chances of their own to take Republican-held seats. (The most important vote a legislator casts is the vote to organize. The most liberal, RINO Republican will vote Republican to organize, putting conservatives in charge of most committees and the flow of business. The most conservative Blue Dog Democrat will vote Democrat to organize, putting liberals in charge. Which is why the Tea Party was arguable Harry Reid’s best friend in the 2010 election. Too many conservatives are obsessed with ideological purity rather than winning on the issues. This is why I will continue to support Scott Brown. ~Bob.)

A Tale of Two Surges
Excerpt: Flat, arid and clear-skied Iraq is accessible by sea and ideal for air operations. Landlocked Afghanistan is mountainous and hard to supply, with a harsh climate and often stormy weather. A nuclear and duplicitous Pakistan plays far more havoc than did even Iraq's meddling neighbors. Iraq has a stronger secular tradition, and its population is mostly literate. Afghanistan is far more fundamentalist and tribal, with well over half the population illiterate.

D.C. funds for needy used more for perks-- Council member calls for closing accounts
Excerpt: D.C. Council member Tommy Wells on Wednesday called for the elimination of special funds the city’s lawmakers are supposed to use to help the needy — money critics consider “slush funds” rarely tapped to help residents. A Washington Times review of 10,000 payments totaling $3.3 million since 2004 shows that just 3 percent or $84,000 has gone to power and water bills, presumably for needy constituents, and $37,000 for phone bills. More — $133,000 — has been spent at pro sporting events. (Political scandals this small don’t make the papers in Chicago. ~Bob.)

Excerpt: Pat Condell has a unique way with language, as a recent video shows. Look at this delightful phrase: “[the EU]…will collapse under the weight of its own illegitimacy.”

I Got 15 Kids and 3 Baby Daddys - Someone's Gotta Pay For Me and My Kids
No excerpt. Just total amazement. Entitlement taken to a whole new level. Where will it end? --MG

Mad Mitt
Excerpt: Where did his unflappability go? (VIDEO BELOW) Mitt Romney appeared strangely agitated in his interview with Fox News host Bret Baier on Tuesday.

Worth Reading: The dirty secret media ignores
False sex charges. ~Bob. Excerpt: Do you recognize the name Crystal Gail Mangum? Do you recognize the name Donna Burleigh? Do you recognize the name Mariah Yeater? What about Nafissatou Diallo, does her name sound familiar? I betting that out of the thousands who read my blog daily, the number of people who could accurately identify these people would be almost infinitesimal.

Prescott High grad on mend at Wounded Warriors outing
Excerpt: After seeing a four-point buck on the hillside at Fort Peck Lake in Montana, Lance Cpl. Michael Martinez flipped his right leg prosthesis upside down to provide a rest for his rifle and fired.

Fire Sale on Electric Cars!: The Chevy Volt and other failures won’t kill Obama’s enthusiasm.
Excerpt: Electric-car sales are on fire. Okay, well, only a few electric cars have actually gone up in smoke. But with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opening a formal safety investigation into fears about fires started by the much-hyped Chevrolet Volt, it’s become clear yet again that electric vehicles are The Next Big Thing — and they always will be.

Fed Buys a Ticket on the Titanic
Excerpt: The Federal Reserve just gave the United States a ticket to board the sinking Titanic that is socialist Europe. Now cheap dollars borrowed by weak nations will shore up failing models of socialist governments, which will be enabled to continue their spendthrift ways while postponing meaningful reform.  If European banks want to borrow dollars, they may do so, as the rate there is cheaper than here in the good old USA.

Ten words you need to stop misspelling
Useful and funny. ~Bob.

Kristallnacht Spreads ....... to New Jersey
Excerpt: There is a sharp spike in vicious anti-Jewish attacks. A couple of weeks ago, on the 73rd anniversary of Kristallnacht, cars were set on fire as more swastikas turned up in NYC: "looks Like a war zone". That was followed the next week with "Avenue Jew," and then more swastikas.

Worth Reading: CEO's Open Letter to President Obama
Excerpt: When you were a community organizer in Chicago, you learned the art of waging a guerilla campaign against a far superior force. But you've graduated from that milieu and now help to set the agenda for that superior force. You might do well at this point to eschew the polarizing vernacular of political militancy and become the transcendent leader you were elected to be.

Former Friend of Ginger White: White and I Had Lesbian Relationship While Cain "Affair" Supposedly Happened
Excerpt: Honestly, you can't make this stuff up. Not only did Ginger White lose a libel case this year, according to a former friend and business partner, Ms. White is a lesbian. And, on top of all of that, Kimberly Vay, who had a relationship with Ms. White, stated that Herman Cain was "never mentioned" during the years they spent as partners. (Throw enough mud and some sticks, they say. Now it’s fling everywhere. What happened to “It’s just about sex” when Bill Clinton lied under oath to duck a sexual harassment charge? ~Bob.)

Conspiracies, Terrorist Defense Videoed at Anti NYPD Rally
Excerpt: Muslim Americans teamed up with
Occupy Wall Street
protesters to march toward the New York Police headquarters Nov. 18 in a demonstration against NYPD and CIA tactics and repression of Muslim American communities. They defended convicted terrorists as victims of entrapment and abusive treatment, including one convicted of trying to kill American troops and FBI agents in Afghanistan.

Media Have Made Traditional Values the Counterculture
Excerpt: As a society, we no longer celebrate the good things in America. The heroes of yesteryear are as hard to find as the use of the word "yesteryear." Valiant soldiers, astronauts, police officers and more have been torn down, criticized and destroyed by the keepers of our pop culture. Replacing them are street thug rappers, clueless athletes and brainless Hollywood stars.

Once You Go Conservative Black, You Better Watch Your Back
Excerpt: With the mainstream media giddily reporting on an alleged affair involving Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain, how long can it be before they break the news that their 2004 vice presidential candidate conceived a "love child" with his mistress, Rielle Hunter?

Islamic Law Comes to Michigan
Excerpt: The city of Dearborn, Michigan denied a permit Wednesday for Qur’an-burning Pastor Terry Jones’ planned protest outside the Islamic Center of America on Good Friday. Islamic supremacists were handed a victory for their violent intimidation and threats. City spokeswoman Mary Laundroche said that Jones’ permit had been denied for “public safety reasons.” In other words, they’re afraid Muslims will riot.

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