Saturday, October 31, 2009

op ed review 11/1

THIS WEEK’S NEWS

The House health care bill unveiled Thursday clocks in at 1,990 pages and about 400,000 words. With an estimated 10-year cost of $894 billion, that comes out to about $2.24 million per word. .

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1009/28904.html

According to Gallup, the percentage of Americans who believe the cost of health care for their families will "get worse" under the proposed reforms rose to 49% from 42% in just the past month.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704335904574495131591949574.html

Conservatives outnumber moderates and liberals in the American populace in 2009, confirming a finding that Gallup first noted in June. Forty percent of Americans describe their political views as conservative, 36% as moderate, and 20% as liberal. This marks a shift from 2005 through 2008, when moderates were tied with conservatives as the most prevalent group.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/123854/Conservatives-Maintain-Edge-Top-Ideological-Group.aspx

Conservatives from around the country are fighting to preserve what they see as the integrity of the Republican Party. Urged on by leaders like former Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaska and Dick Armey, the former House majority leader from Texas, they have come to defeat Dede Scozzafava, the Republican candidate for Congress in the 23rd District.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/27/nyregion/27upstate.html

Scozzafava is the product of an obscenely corrupt political bargain by GOP bosses that sells out their party -- and New Yorkers generally. She favors same-sex marriage, abortion, tax-and-spend, union card-check, and is backed by ACORN.

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/editorials/doug_hoffman_for_congress_21sqalnJNLjOEpD7JEOHaJ

How or why the party regulars in NY23 thought that Scozzafava would be acceptable to anyone to the right of Karl Marx will forever remain a mystery.

http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2009/10/ny23_now_a_litmus_test_for_con.html

Inexplicably, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is warning conservative activists that their support for a third-party candidate in a key upcoming New York special election is a “mistake.”

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1009/28730.html

On Saturday, trailing in the polls, , Scozzafava dropped out of the race.

http://www.politico.com/blogs/scorecard/1009/BREAKING_Scozzafava_drops_out_of_NY_23.html

An early progress report on President Barack Obama's economic recovery plan overstates by thousands the number of jobs created or saved through the stimulus program, a mistake that White House officials promise will be corrected in future reports. The government's first accounting of jobs tied to the $787 billion stimulus program claimed more than 30,000 positions paid for with recovery money ($2.6M/job). But that figure is overstated by least 5,000 jobs, according to an Associated Press review of a sample of stimulus contracts.

http://apnews.myway.com/article/20091029/D9BKMVMG0.html

A total of 690,000 new vehicles were sold under the Cash for Clunkers program last summer, but only 125,000 of those were vehicles that would not have been sold anyway, according to an analysis released Wednesday by the automotive Web site Edmunds.com. That means the government ended up spending about $24,000 each for those 125,000 additional vehicle sales.

http://money.cnn.com/2009/10/28/autos/clunkers_analysis/index.htm

One of the 20 finalists in health care video contest run by Barack Obama’s campaign arm features a mural of an America flag splattered with health care graffiti until it’s covered completely by black paint. According to the Organizing for American Web site, the 20 finalists in the “Health Reform Video Challenge” were chosen by a panel of “qualified” Democratic National Committee “employee judges.”

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1009/28848.html#at

Cell phone service is now a government entitlement:

https://www.safelinkwireless.com/EnrollmentPublic/Home.aspx

Virginia Turns Back to Red Again

http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/017/117sxpdm.asp

“Medicare provides a rich income stream for criminals. Medicare fraud has become the most profitable crime in America.”

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/10/23/60minutes/main5414390.shtml

White House for sale: During his first nine months in office, President Obama has quietly rewarded scores of top Democratic donors with VIP access to the White House, private briefings with administration advisers and invitations to important speeches and town-hall meetings. High-dollar fundraisers have been promised access to senior White House officials in exchange for pledges to donate $30,400 personally or to bundle $300,000 in contributions ahead of the 2010 midterm elections, according to internal DNC documents.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/oct/28/democratic-donors-rewarded-with-wh-perks/?source=newsletter_must-read-stories-today_photo_feature#at

A large, enthusiastic crowd of people carrying signs and waving flags in protest of a government they say is not representing them gathered in San Diego to kick off Tea Party Express II, the first of 38 stops that will span 7,000 miles in 20 days and wind up in Orlando, Fla.

http://www3.signonsandiego.com/stories/2009/oct/26/crowd-kicks-8216tea-party8217-tour/?uniontrib

No good deed goes unpunished: The case of the "flying imams" has been settled. The six suspicious acting Muslim clerics who were pulled off a U.S. Airways flight will be paid an undisclosed sum to drop their lawsuit.

http://www.minnpost.com/ericblack/2009/10/26/12801/flying_imams_in_the_rear-view_mirror_what_was_the_evidence_against_them

Home Depot employee fired for wearing a button that reads: "One nation under God, indivisible."

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/local/breakingnews/sfl-button-fired-bn102609,1,6533129.story

“Ratings for Fox News up 10% since attacks by Obama”

http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2009/10/ratings_for_fox_new_up_10_sinc.html

US Chamber of Commerce President Tom Donohue says a campaign by the White House and its allies to undermine his association has largely failed — and actually has helped raise even more money for its pro-business efforts.

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1009/28720.html

There's a poll up at KIROTV.com. Hutchinson leads by 53%.

http://www.kirotv.com/surveyresults/21421874/detail.html?section=news&questionum=1&answer1=2

President Barack Obama has only been in office for just over nine months, but he's already he’s been on the golf course more than President Bush was in two years.

http://www.politico.com/click/stories/0910/obama_ties_bush_on_golf.html

Democrats have made health insurance companies the villain in the health care debate. Actually, industry profits barely exceeded 2 percent of revenues in the latest annual measure.

http://apnews.myway.com/article/20091025/D9BI4D6O1.html

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THIS WEEK’S FEATURED COLUMN

Jed Babbin 10/26/09

Congressional Republicans are suffering from legislative exhaustion. They’ve been swimming against the Obama congressional tsunami since February and they’ve lost a lot of big battles. A good many of them have fought the good fight, but they’ve still lost on everything from the faux “stimulus” package to the awful and unconstitutionally vague “hate crimes” law. At this point, too many are fatalistic, seeing nothing more than a continuing string of defeats this year and next.

Establishment Republicans among them aren’t helping themselves. They’re ignoring conservative causes and neglecting to campaign to capture the Tea Partyers and the other votes that they can gain with a concerted effort aimed at them.

Perhaps the best example of the struggle between the Republican Establishment and resurgent conservatives is the otherwise obscure special election next month in New York’s 23rd congressional district. Most of the House Republican leadership is backing the hyperliberal “Republican” candidate Dede Scozzafava against conservative Doug Hoffman.

Prominent conservatives across the nation -- former Tennessee senator Fred Thompson and former House Minority Leader Dick Army, among many others -- have come out strongly for Hoffman. The Republican establishment is content with Scozzafava, who will -- if she’s elected -- make former Republican Arlen Specter look like a staunch party loyalist.

In the Senate, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) heads the outreach program. Is she concentrating on the Tea Partyers and independents? No: she’s going on a pander-quest, reaching out to women, blacks and Hispanics, usually-reliable Democratic voting blocks unlikely to be brought aboard the Republican train. Jennifer Lopez isn’t going to help Murkowski.

These are not the moves of a party serious about winning in 2010 and beyond.

The Republican establishment disdains ideological conservatives. Even some in the conservative media argue that to win, Republicans have to shy away from ideological campaigns. But ideological campaigns are built on solid conservative ideas and principles. It is these campaigns, not those such as John McCain’s last year, that win over independent voters.

It’s one thing to energize your base. But you have to build on it to win elections. The moment to start is now.

Republicans need to think -- and act right now -- on the Tea Partyers’ distrust of government and analyze what else will animate independents. Whether you call them Tea Partyers or “Reagan Democrats” doesn’t matter. What matters are those “kitchen table” issues.

Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi are pushing hard for the government-run healthcare takeover. Why isn’t the RNC running ads in every media market where the House Blue Dogs sit, asking the Tea Partyers specifically and everyone else to call their offices to demand that they vote against it?

Scott Rasmussen reports that thirty-eight percent of Americans think budget reduction is the top priority. All year, Speaker Pelosi has blocked Republicans’ ability to offer amendments on appropriations bills. Why isn’t Minority Leader John Boehner fighting openly against her? Forget earmarks: they’re small change. Republicans need to make the Obama multi-trillion dollar spending spree a top issue.

Ross Perot ran a campaign based almost entirely on the idea of reining in federal spending. And when Americans are losing jobs, fearing for the safety of their home investments and looking at what Washington is spending, that’s a kitchen table issue just as much as healthcare.

The Republican Party used to stand with the independents -- the Reagan Democrats -- on everything from federal spending to national security. It’s time to renew that focus, and conduct a national ideological campaign. If they start now, they can win big next year, and again in 2012. If they don’t, they will remain in the wilderness. And none of the Tea Partyers will shed a tear.

Edited from a longer column, read it here:

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=34120

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FROM OTHER COLUMNS

"Much of what government does is based on the premise that people can't do things for themselves. So government must do it for them. More often than not, the result is a ham-handed, bumbling, one-size-fits-all approach that leaves the intended beneficiaries worse off. Of course, this resulting failure is never blamed on the political approach -- on the contrary, failure is taken to mean the government solution was not extravagant enough."

-John Stossel

"What is most frightening about the political left is that they seem to have no sense of the tragedy of the human condition. All problems seem to them to be due to other people not being as wise or as noble as they are."

-Thomas Sowell

"Under every plausible analysis, it seems, ObamaCare will deliver lower-quality care at higher prices, increasing the federal debt while reducing Americans' freedom. Why are they so determined to do this to us?"

-James Taranto

"If the American press corps were as concerned about the Tenth Amendment as it has been protecting the First and trying to get rid of the Second, this would be a far different country."

-Rich Galen

"Communism is nothing more than Nazism with better PR. Its track record of atrocities dwarf those of Hitler, and its core philosophy is every bit as repugnant, if not more so. That anyone in America would even attempt to put 'lipstick on this pig' is an unmitigated disgrace. That they can do it with such relative ease -- under the banner of 'social justice,' no less -- is truly frightening."

-Arnold Ahlert

"The University of Chicago disclosed it would someday like to be home to Barack Obama's future presidential library. The president was a professor at the Chicago Law School for a dozen years. He taught the ‘How to Get Around Constitutional Law’ class."

-Argus Hamilton

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LEFTIST WATCH

Rep. Barney Frank lets the cat out of the bag: "We are trying on every front to increase the role of government"

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2009/10/26/frank_we_are_trying_on_every_front_to_increase_the_role_of_government.html

Rocco Landesman is President Obama's handpicked chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. Last week he gave the keynote address to the 2009 Grantmakers in the Arts Conference. Those of us concerned about the politicization of life and art in the Age of Obama will not be consoled by a reading of Landesman's speech. The speech bears examination in its entirety, but Landesman's tribute to Obama is especially worth a look: “This is the first president that actually writes his own books since Teddy Roosevelt and arguably the first to write them really well since Lincoln. If you accept the premise, and I do, that the United States is the most powerful country in the world, then Barack Obama is the most powerful writer since Julius Caesar.” (note: Obama didn’t write his own book, and Lincoln never wrote a book.)

http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2009/10/024805.php

The Democratic National Committee, keeping up its drumbeat of harsh new-media campaigns against GOP leaders, is rallying Democrats to attack Sarah Palin where she communicates -- on Facebook. In an email to its list (after the jump) and a web page, the committee is pushing supporters to go after Palin on the social media site for alleged "lies".

http://www.politico.com/blogs/bensmith/1009/DNC_attacks_Palin_lies.html

“Obama’s Safe Schools Czar Advocated ‘Queering Elementary Education”, calling for elementary school children to explore their sexual identities, for teachers to incorporate homosexual themes in grades K-5, for discarding a “hetero-normative” approach to education and for “acknowledging children as sexual beings.”

http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/56196

The head of a prominent liberal think tank says America should legalize pot and tax it to pay for health care.

http://blogs.abcnews.com/george/2009/10/video-podesta-tax-pot-to-pay-for-health-care.html

Hillary Clinton tells Pakistan their taxes are too low. In the US, she says, “We tax everything that moves and doesn’t move..”

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/print.asp?page=2009%5C10%5C30%5Cstory_30-10-2009_pg1_1

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ARTICLES

“It's officially safe to criticize Barack Obama”

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/blogs/beltway-confidential/Memo-Its-officially-safe-to-criticize-Barack-Obama-67950962.html

Political strategist Frank Luntz’s memo on how to defeat Pelosicare. Advice on how to frame the debate. Important read, especially for candidates.

http://www.politico.com/static/PPM41_healthcare_research_highlights_memo.html

Der Spiegel’s interview with Charles Krauthammer:

http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,656501,00.html

Better read this: “now look at the real reason why this policy (mass immigration) was introduced, and in secret. The Government's 'driving political purpose', wrote Neather, was 'to make the UK truly multicultural'. It was therefore a politically motivated attempt by ministers to transform the fundamental make-up and identity of this country. It was done to destroy the right of the British people to live in a society defined by a common history, religion, law, language and traditions. It was done to destroy for ever what it means to be culturally British and to put another 'multicultural' identity in its place. And it was done without telling or asking the British people whether they wanted their country and their culture to be transformed in this way. Spitefully, one motivation by Labor ministers was 'to rub the Right's nose in diversity and render their arguments out of date'.”

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-1222977/MELANIE-PHILLIPS-The-outrageous-truth-slips-Labour-cynically-plotted-transform-entire-make-Britain-telling-us.html

As promised, Barack Obama is bringing change to America. He's making it more Republican. It's not that more people are actually becoming Republicans or calling themselves Republicans -- the number of voters who formally identify with the party is at its lowest point in years. But we appear to be in the early stages of a shift in which political independents, people who not too long ago were sick of Republicans, are now leaning

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/politics/Obama_s-big-change_-He-moves-America-to-the-Right-8442204-66186122.html

A four-hour stop in New Orleans, on his way to a $3 million fundraiser. Snubbing the Dalai Lama. Signing off on a secret deal with drug makers. Freezing out a TV network. Doing more fundraisers than the last president. More golf, too. President Barack Obama has done all of those things — and more. What’s remarkable is what hasn’t happened. These episodes haven’t become metaphors for Obama’s personal and political character..”

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1009/28764.html

A star is born: Hannah Giles is a townhall.com contributor and aspiring journalist. She is the journalist behind the ACORN prostitution/tax evasion sting. She is the oldest daughter of Townhall.com columnist Doug Giles.

http://townhall.com/columnists/HannahGiles/2009/10/28/mainstream_media_ignores_juicy_acorn_nuggets#at

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NOTEWORTHY WEBSITES

NUTBUSTERZ: We are a citizen action group committed to exposing the danger that ACORN and the Working Family Party poses to our democracy based on their record of subverting elections through voter fraud, falsifying petitions for Constitutional Amendments and favored candidacies, looting government housing programs, blackmailing corporations and cheating the public campaign finance system.

http://nutbusterz.org/

The spaghetti western database

http://www.spaghetti-western.net/index.php/Essential_Top_20_Films

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WISE WORDS

"If you want total security, go to prison. There you're fed, clothed, given medical care, and so on. The only thing lacking ... is freedom."

-Dwight D. Eisenhower

"But a Constitution of Government once changed from Freedom, can never be restored. Liberty, once lost, is lost forever."

-John Adams

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