Saturday, June 13, 2009

Op Ed Review 6/14

THIS WEEK’S NEWS

Conservatives raced toward victory in some of Europe's largest economies as initial results and exit polls showed voters punishing left-leaning parties in European parliament elections in France, Germany and elsewhere. Right-leaning governments were ahead of the opposition in Germany, France, Italy and Belgium, while conservative opposition parties were leading in Britain and Spain. Germany's Social Democrats headed to their worst showing in a nationwide election since World War II.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090607/ap_on_re_eu/european_elections

In the words of the socialists’ leader in the Euro-parliament, the centre left suffered a “very bitter evening”...

http://www.economist.com/world/europe/displaystory.cfm?story_id=13805596

During a visit to Afghanistan, Rep. Mike Rogers, Michigan Republican, witnessed captured foreign fighters being read Miranda warnings. The Justice Department says this is done ''to preserve the quality of evidence obtained.'' "This is the logical conclusion to [the] Obama administration's approach to combating terrorism. Actually scratch that. America is no longer fighting terrorists, just investigating alleged crimes," says one blogger.

http://washingtontimes.com/news/2009/jun/12/stop-mirandizing-terrorists/

Chicago politics comes to DC: 1)The AmeriCorps Inspector General accuses prominent Obama supporter of misusing AmeriCorps grant money. 2)Prominent Obama supporter has to pay back more than $400,000 of that grant money. 3)Obama fires the AmeriCorps Inspector General

. http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/blogs/beltway-confidential/Whats-behind-Obamas-sudden-firing-of-the-AmeriCorps-inspector-general-47877797.html

The Obama Administration has appointed a compensation czar to determine pay for top executives at Government Motors, Chrysler, Bank of America, American International Group, Citigroup, Chrysler Financial and GMAC.

http://blogs.ajc.com/thinking-right/2009/06/11/whats-my-pay-mr-czar/?cxntfid=blogs_thinking_right

No word yet on when Obama will impose pay caps on labor union bosses.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/weblogs/back-story/2009/jun/11/business-groups-dare-obama-to-limit-pay-for-unions/

What next? “President Obama will proclaim public education K-12 as too crucial to the future of the nation to be left in the hands of volunteer citizen committees, also known as School Boards and Independent School Districts…”

http://www.americanthinker.com/2009/06/nationalizing_public_education.html

The Philadelphia Women’s Center gave away free abortions this week “in honor of Dr. George Tiller.”

http://townhall.com/columnists/JillianBandes/2009/06/09/the_philly_abortion_giveaway?page=full

The American Medical Association is letting Congress know that it will oppose creation of a government-sponsored insurance plan, which President Obama and many other Democrats see as an essential element of legislation to remake the health care system.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/11/us/politics/11health.html

“..Dave Letterman told a rape joke about a little girl. Not just any little girl, of course, because that would be wrong. No, his joke on national television was about the daughter of Sarah Palin,…a Republican. Which, to many of the Left, apparently made it right… “They'd lynch him if he told it about, say, one of Barack Obama's daughters instead.”

http://www.news.com.au/heraldsun/story/0,21985,25622580-5000117,00.html

If there was any question that a stubborn strain of old-school sexism persists in Obama's America, one has only to look at certain leaders of the "liberal media" but which is sounding and acting, recently, more like the frat-house media. There, like a virus hiding in the body…misogyny has found a place to lurk almost undetected,

http://www.salon.com/mwt/broadsheet/feature/2009/06/12/letterman_palin/index.html

Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor belongs to a highly selective club for women only.. “If this judge were a man, the nomination would never make it to the Senate for hearings.”

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/jun/11/sotomayors-club-for-women-only/

A Christian evangelical group that works to improve the lives of underprivileged children says it has been prohibited from conducting Bible study classes in public housing projects in Tulsa, Okla

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,525424,00.html

Could California become the first state in the nation to do away with welfare?

http://www.mcclatchydc.com/nation/story/69467.html

A 7 foot tall statue the late former President Ronald Reagan was unveiled in the Capitol Rotunda this week.

http://projects.ajc.com/gallery/view/news/reagan-statue-capitol/

Newt Gingrich was the keynote speaker at Monday night's fundraising dinner for the Senate and House Republican campaign committees, but it was Sarah Palin who stole the show

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/06/08/AR2009060804096.html?hpid=opinionsbox1

“Exxon Mobil's surprise decision to join Trans-Canada on a vast Alaska gas pipeline project is a big step toward making the U.S. self-sufficient in domestic energy. By defying naysayers, Sarah Palin is now vindicated.”

http://www.ibdeditorials.com/IBDArticles.aspx?id=329698559684271

Your tax dollars at work: The House passed a plan to provide vouchers of up to $4,500 for consumers who turn in old cars and trucks for more fuel-efficient vehicles.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124458189145699485.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

A new test to reveal the gender of a fetus in early pregnancy has sparked a row over whether it will lead to sex-selection abortions.”

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10577091

The Rev. Jeremiah Wright said that President Obama hasn't spoken to him since they parted ways last year, because "them Jews aren't going to let him talk to me."

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/06/10/wright-suggests-jews-white-house-wont-let-speak-obama/

Former President George H.W. Bush celebrated his 85th birthday by leaping into thin air from a plane.

http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2009/06/12/at-85-george-hw-bush-jumps-for-joy/

Air France Flight 447’s passenger manifest contained the names of two people with alleged ties to Al Qaeda.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/csm/20090610/ts_csm/aterrorlink

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THIS WEEK’S FEATURED COLUMN

Cal Thomas: 6/9

A statue of Ronald Reagan was unveiled last week in the Capitol Rotunda at a time when many Republicans, and even some conservatives, think Mr. Reagan's ideas are passe. Before moving on, Republicans and those conservatives who don't want to ''live in the past'' should be asked what better ideas they have to offer.

As the Obama administration and congressional Democrats move quickly with their new power to grab even more power and build larger, more intrusive and costlier government, they - and we - should consider Mr. Reagan's thoughts on the "power of the individual, rather than government power and peace through strength to keep us free." And, "Man is not free unless government is limited." And, "[C]oncentrated power has always been the enemy of liberty."

As government acquires the auto industry and seeks to own health care, as it plans to take more money from the productive in order to subsidize the unproductive or less productive, as government evolves from nanny into a cruel and abusive guardian that will rob the individual of incentive and punish those who manage to succeed with crippling regulations and higher taxes, where are the champions of liberty and personal responsibility?

Instead of stories many of us heard as children about people who grew up in difficult circumstances - alcoholic mother, abusive father, racial discrimination, physical handicaps - and rose to self-sufficiency, even prosperity, we get messages that say you can't do it on your own and you will never amount to anything unless you place your faith in government.

"You can do it," parents tell their children as they urge the youngsters to higher levels of achievement. This sentiment used to be found in popular culture, including feel-good films that inspired people to achieve their ideals. Now we punish the successful and make the pursuit of success more difficult because of strangulating government.

Why must government "fix" health care? Because government does few things well, why aren't better minds than politicians leading the way? We know what works. It isn't collectivism and government bureaucrats telling us what type of health care they will allow us to have that will bring transformation; it is individuals employing innovation. Individuals such as the late statistician W. Edwards Deming, who developed his System of Profound Knowledge and his 14 Points for Management guidelines using principles known as "systems thinking." He used those systems as a consultant to Japanese industry to help several Japanese manufacturers create more efficient workplaces, higher profits and increased productivity. (Visit www.managementwisdom.com/goodnews.html for an excerpt from a television documentary that spells out how health care can be fixed, starting with hospitals, not government.) Why aren't more people raising the profile of these proven solutions, which have cut costs and improved patient care at hospitals that have implemented them?

Some years ago, CBS News correspondent Lesley Stahl reported on a jobs program run out of a Harlem housing project in New York City. Participants were the hard-core unemployed who either had never had a job or couldn't hold onto one. All were minorities. The leader asked, "How many think racism is a problem in America?" Every hand went up. He then said, "So what? Your problem isn't racism; your problem is attitude, and that's what we're going to change."

He taught them how to dress, how to shake hands and look prospective employers in the eye. Cameras followed one woman to an interview. She got the job and began to cry. She had discovered her value and the power of the individual. Government didn't give her that job; she got it on her own. In fact, government had been sending her checks, which had caused her to be more dependent on government.

"There are no constraints on the human mind, no walls around the human spirit, no barriers to our progress except those we ourselves erect," Mr. Reagan said. And, "Government's first duty is to protect the people, not ruin their lives."

As politicians prepare to do things for which government has little experience and even less ability, where are the leaders who will again embrace the power behind Mr. Reagan's thoughts? It was Mr. Reagan who said, "Governments tend not to solve problems, only to rearrange them." He warned, "Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same."

Government is eroding freedom. It is time to fight, but where are the generals to lead us? Will the public wake up and realize what is being stolen from us before it is gone?

Read the full column here:

http://washingtontimes.com/news/2009/jun/09/reagan-unveiled/

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FROM OTHER COLUMNS

"In the end, the explanation for this long, long war -- which grows longer -- doesn't lie in anything we've done but in who we are: a nation dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal and endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights. Has there ever been a doctrine more subversive to the despotisms of the world? What we in the West do, right or wrong or neither, is but an excuse for the war being waged against our civilization by a rapacious enemy. It is what we are that threatens them: a beacon. Ideas have consequences; they can spread of their own accord. That is why we are such a threat to their closed societies. It is what we represent: freedom. And freedom attracts by its very existence. Eternal vigilance, it turns out, isn't just the price of liberty but of our existence."

-Paul Greenberg

"The teaching establishment and politicians have hoodwinked taxpayers into believing that more money is needed to improve education. The Washington, D.C., school budget is about the nation's costliest, spending about $15,000 per pupil. Its student/teacher ratio, at 15.2 to 1, is lower than the nation's average. Yet student achievement is just about the lowest in the nation. What's so callous about the Washington situation is about 1,700 children in kindergarten through 12th grade receive the $7,500 annual scholarships in order to escape rotten D.C. public schools, and four times as many apply for the scholarships, yet Congress, beholden to the education establishment, will end funding the school voucher program. Any long-term solution to our education problems requires the decentralization that can come from competition. Centralization has been massive. In 1930, there were 119,000 school districts across the U.S; today, there are less than 15,000. Control has moved from local communities to the school district, to the state, and to the federal government. Public education has become a highly centralized government-backed monopoly and we shouldn't be surprised by the results."

-Walter E. Williams

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LEFTIST WATCH

Now the ACORN crime family is jumping on the global warming alarmism bandwagon, according to (the left-leaning) Worldwatch Institute. The radical community group, which is now facing voter registration fraud charges in Nevada, has joined forces with Al Gore and other groups for the ultimate taxpayer shakedown: carbon emission controls.

http://spectator.org/blog/2009/06/08/acorn-enters-the-highly-lucrat

Gay activists in California try to turn neighborhoods against pro-marriage supporters.: "Dear Neighbor, Our neighbors, Colleen and Jay Pimentel (address) contributed $1,500.00 to the Yes on Proposition 8 campaign. NEIGHBORS SHOULD BE AWARE OF THEIR NEIGHBORS' CHOICES."

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1904146-1,00.html

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BOOKS

Thomas Sowell: “In an age that values cleverness over wisdom, it is not surprising that many superficial but clever books get more attention than a wise book like "The Character of Nations" by Angelo Codevilla, even though the latter has far more serious implications for the changing character of our own nation…..But clever people among today's intelligentsia disdain the very idea that there is such a thing as "national character."

http://townhall.com/columnists/ThomasSowell/2009/06/10/the_character_of_nations?page=full&comments=true#comments

“American Passage: The History of Ellis Island” by Vincent J. Cannato a "sweeping and heart wrenching read"

http://radioequalizer.blogspot.com/

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GLOBALONEY

A row between the fast food giant Burger King and one of its major franchise owners has erupted over roadside signs proclaiming "global warming is baloney".

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/jun/05/burger-king-global-warming-us

Sales of the Prius in the US are down more than 45 per cent this year.

http://www.businessgreen.com/business-green/news/2243569/sales-stall-prius-big-japan

Taking public transportation may not be as green as you think, says a new US study

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=CNG.243153c6a091a3b942a75077729e8c92.c51&show_article=1

More and more Democrats are ready to vote against Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s climate change bill, according to a congressional committee chairman who now opposes his leader.

http://thehill.com/leading-the-news/dem-mutiny-on-climate-bill-grows-says-peterson-2009-06-10.html

Welcome to the third annual International Conference on Climate Change, a daylong session of speeches and scientific presentations that took place Tuesday just blocks from the U.S. Capitol. Almost no media covered the event. (too many of the speakers were global warming skeptics)

http://hamptonroads.com.nyud.net/2009/06/global-warming-not-so-fast-skeptics-say-meeting

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ARTICLES

Mark Steyn: “The British National Health Service is the biggest employer not just in the United Kingdom but in the whole of Europe. Care to estimate the size and budget of a U.S. health bureaucracy?.... by historical standards, we're loaded: We have TVs and iPods and machines to wash our clothes and our dishes. We're the first society in which a symptom of poverty is obesity: Every man his own William Howard Taft. Of course we're "vulnerable": By definition, we always are. But to demand a government organized on the principle of preemptively "taking care" of potential "vulnerabilities" is to make all of us, in the long run, far more vulnerable. A society of children cannot survive, no matter how all-embracing the government nanny. I get a lot of mail each week arguing that, when folks see the price tag attached to Obama's plans, they'll get angry. Maybe. But, if Europe's a guide, at least as many people will retreat into apathy. Once big government's in place, it's very hard to go back.”

http://www.ocregister.com/articles/health-care-government-2462454-life-expectancy

Newsweek editor Evan Thomas has created a precious contrast in the media's approach to presidents Bush and Obama. "Well, our job is to bash the president, that's what we do," Thomas said on February 2, 2007. Well, that was then, this is now. "I mean in a way Obama’s standing above the country, above – above the world, he’s sort of God." – Evan Thomas on Hardball, June 5, 2009.

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/tim-graham/2009/06/08/quick-take-evan-thomas-vs-evan-thomas

“The establisment Left had been crushed across most of Europe, just as it was in the early 1930s…….. It is not clear why a chunk of the blue-collar working base has swung almost overnight from Left to Right, but clearly we are seeing the delayed detonation of two political time-bombs: rising unemployment and the growth of immigrant enclaves that resist assimilation.”

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/ambrose_evans-pritchard/blog/2009/06/08/europe_swings_right_as_depression_deepens

Charles Krauthammer's remarks upon receiving the 2009 Eric Breindel Award for Excellence in Opinion Journalism: “….the genius of Rupert Murdoch and Roger Ailes was to have discovered a niche market in American broadcasting -- half the American people. The reason Fox News has thrived and grown is because it offers a vibrant and honest alternative to those who could not abide yet another day of the news delivered to them beneath layer after layer of often undisguised liberalism. What Fox did is not just create a venue for alternative opinion. It created an alternate reality…A few years ago, I was on a radio show with a well-known political reporter who lamented the loss of a pristine past in which the whole country could agree on what the facts were, even if they disagreed on how to interpret and act upon them. All that was gone now. The country had become so fractured we couldn't even agree on what reality was. What she meant was that the day in which the front page of The New York Times was given scriptural authority everywhere was gone, shattered by the rise of Fox News. What left me slack-jawed was the fact that she, like the cohort of mainstream journalists she represented so perfectly, was so ideologically blinkered that she could not fathom the plain fact that the liberal media were presenting the news and the world through a particular lens. The idea that it was particular, and that there might be competing ones, perhaps even superior ones, was beyond her ken. That's why Fox News is so resented. It altered the intellectual and ideological landscape of America. It gave not only voice but also legitimacy to a worldview that had been utterly excluded from the mainstream media. I'm proud to be part of this televised apostasy. And particularly proud to be part of the single best news program on American television, the six-o'clock news -- first with Brit Hume, now with Bret Baier. How good is "Special Report"? So good that even if I weren't on it, my mother would watch it -- and she spent 50 years as a Democrat.”

http://www.nypost.com/seven/06102009/postopinion/opedcolumnists/how_fox_news_opened_america_173419.htm?page=0

The Party Of Yes:6 Ways Democrats Are Hurting America

http://townhall.com/Columnists/JohnHawkins/2009/06/09/the_party_of_yes_6_ways_democrats_are_hurting_america?page=full

Karl Rove: “How to stop socialized health care”

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124467554761003983.html#mod=djemEditorialPage

Do you want your government to know that you have bowel troubles? Do you mind if the president can discover if you have erectile dysfunction? ...Do you think this is a silly claim? Well, don’t.

http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/11789

During his White House years, William Jefferson Clinton was dubbed "America's first black president" by a black admirer. Applying the standard of identity politics and pandering to a special interest that earned Mr. Clinton that distinction, Barack Hussein Obama would have to be considered America's first Muslim president.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/jun/09/americas-first-muslim-president/

Which is more newsworthy — the murder of an abortion doctor in Wichita, Kan., by an alleged anti-abortion activist or the murder of an Army recruiter and the wounding of another in Little Rock, Ark., by an alleged Muslim convert who is said to hate the U.S. military? Most people not involved in news-placement decisions would probably say they were equally newsworthy. But those in the news media actually making those decisions had a different view.

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0609/23481.html

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NOTEWORTHY WEBSITES

Help organize a July 4th TEA PARTY in your city

http://www.teapartyday.com/

Jon Voight’s speech to the Republican dinner:

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/ken-shepherd/2009/06/09/video-jon-voights-speech-republican-dinner

Six things you cannot say in Seattle: Number six: “I’m a Republican.” “There is no surer ticket to the Mental Hospital for the Criminally Insane than to make this declaration in Seattle today.”

http://crosscut.com/2009/06/11/seattle/19017/

A supervolcano may be brewing beneath Mount St Helens

http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20227124.700-supervolcano-may-be-brewing-beneath-mount-st-helens.html

What’s left of Saddam Hussein’s palaces:

http://www.richardmosse.com/photography.php?pid=1&photo=32

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WISE WORDS

"In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place, oblige it to control itself."

-James Madison

"[T]hose who have never broken free from the mentality of tax-and-tax and spend-and-spend still think increasing taxes is the best way to solve America's problems. ... We need a tax policy that offers incentives for people to work, save, and invest -- all the things that will keep our economy growing and improve our well being. We need a basic tax reform that will permit us to bring everybody's tax rates down. ... Our country needs leadership that can see beyond the demands of the special interest groups and prepare America for a better tomorrow."

-Ronald Reagan

“That some should be rich shows that others may become rich, and hence, is just encouragement to industry and enterprise.”

-Abraham Lincoln

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LATE NITE

Letterman: Well, it's been a busy week here on the Late Show. Earlier in the week, I made some jokes that upset Sarah Palin. I was telling jokes about her family and stuff. She got really upset. And I think everything's fine now. I think everything's going to be great because she called today and offered to take me hunting.

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The Op-Ed Review is a compilation of the week’s news and opinions of interest to the conservative activist. I follow a variety of news sources and note what I think are the important events of the week that may be underreported in the mainstream media. I also read about 50 syndicated op-ed columns each week and reprint part of what I think is the best one. The goal is to help the reader be a more effective activist for the conservative cause. If you would like to receive this as an e-mail each weekend, click here to drop me a note. mailto:garyfoss3@comcast.net

Gary Foss

47th District Republicans

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