Friday, April 22, 2011

op ed review 4/24

THIS WEEK’S NEWS

“A devastating Gallup survey showing the president with the lowest approval ratings of his presidency--just 41 percent….The White House received another significant blow today with the release of the latest Washington Post/ABC News poll, which revealed deep-seated public unease over his handling of the economy, the number one issue for US voters.”

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/nilegardiner/100084488/a-grim-easter-for-the-obama-presidency-washington-postabc-news-poll-delivers-another-blow-to-the-white-house/

Gas prices have reached five dollars per gallon at some stations in Washington, DC.

http://www.upi.com/News_Photos/view/f772b5b1f31e2af83d29d52d228dd553/Gas-prices-continue-to-rise-in-Washington/#ixzz1K4Z5az9s

On the first anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the administration’s de facto moratorium, or “permitorium,” on offshore drilling has resulted in higher prices for gas and heating fuel in addition to costing thousands of Americans jobs and making the country more dependent on foreign oil.

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/265182/gulf-still-waiting-more-drilling-permits-darrell-issa

U.S. households are now getting more in cash handouts from the government than they are paying in taxes for the first time since the Great Depression.

http://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/2011/04/20/government-cash-handouts-exceed-tax-revenues/

There are so many tax breaks that 45 percent of U.S. households will pay no federal income tax for 2010.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110417/ap_on_re_us/us_no_taxes

That would probably be about the same 43% of Americans who say their tax rate is “about right”

http://www.gallup.com/poll/147152/Americans-Split-Whether-Taxes-High.aspx

The Governor of Idaho has signed an order banning Obamacare.

http://www.localnews8.com/news/27614296/detail.html

Republicans say any bill that even hints at amnesty or legalization for millions of illegal immigrants already living and working in the United States is dead before it ever makes an appearance in a congressional committee.

http://cnsnews.com/news/article/ap-comprehensive-immigration-reform-prob

A state-funded sex education Web site in Massachusetts tells teens an abortion is “much easier than it sounds”

http://www.bostonherald.com/news/regional/view/2011_0420site_no_stigma_in_abortion_critics_blast_state-funded_sex-ed_web_site/srvc=home&position=0

Indiana could become the first state to end Medicaid coverage for Planned Parenthood services.

http://www.indystar.com/article/20110420/NEWS05/104200323/Senate-approves-bill-cuts-off-funds-Planned-Parenthood?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|IndyStar.com

Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee are the strongest potential Republican challengers to President Obama at this time, according to a new McClatchy-Marist poll. And Obama faces a formidable bloc of voters who say, as of now, that they definitely won't vote for him no matter who his opponent is.

http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2011/04/19/112463/romney-huckabee-take-early-lead.html

The US government plans to sell off much of its remaining stake in General Motors this year at a potential loss of more than $11 billion, but the Obama administration is willing to accept the loss in order to cut its last ties to the auto manufacturer.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5iQ772RYgyZRuijNjN58Syvf8HExw?docId=CNG.862196b5b90a6d3e5734cc272997d1cd.a51

General Electric paid no U.S. corporate taxes in 2010. Also, since 2002, GE has eliminated a fifth of its work force in the U.S.

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/editorials/2014684454_edit05taxes.html

This week GE reported a 77% increase in first-quarter earnings.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703983704576276564256544634.html?mod=WSJ_hp_LEFTTopStories

He is known for dressing inmates in pink underwear and feeding them green baloney. And now America's toughest Sheriff has come up with a new initiative to give the public a voice in law enforcement - an online Mugshot of the Day competition. Arizona-based Joe Arpaio, known for his uncompromising stance on crime, is letting the public browse through the mugshots of those arrested each day and then vote for their favorite.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1378608/Americas-toughest-Sheriff-Joe-Arpaio-lets-public-rate-mugshots-online.html#ixzz1K4aBEYNN

Reports of a U.S. “death squad” in Afghanistan, complete with the publication of gory photographs, have failed to attract media attention. Conservatives, while not seeking negative coverage of the armed forces, say it is another example of a blatant double standard. The reason the mainstream media have barely touched the story, conservatives say, is because it happened under President Obama, not George W. Bush.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/apr/17/afghanistan-death-squad-killings-fail-get-media-po/

In Texas, 54 percent of legal immigrants and 70 percent of illegal immigrants receive welfare assistance, with illegal immigrants generally receiving benefits on behalf of their U.S.-born children.

http://blogs.chron.com/txpotomac/2011/04/study_immigrants_with_children.html

Three days after a federal appeals court continued to block implementation of major parts of the Arizona immigration law, state legislators in Georgia overwhelmingly passed a bill with provisions similar to Arizona’s on a 112-59 vote, despite threats of boycotts by pro-immigration groups and lawsuits by the American Civil Liberties Union.

http://washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/2011/04/undeterred-9th-circuit-court-appeals-georgia-follows-arizona-s-le

Rep Cathy McMorris Rogers (R-WA) reports that US taxpayers are on the hook for an impending bailout of Portugal.

http://biggovernment.com/crodgers/2011/04/18/u-s-taxpayers-on-the-hook-for-portugal-bailout/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+BigGovernment+%28Big+Government%29

The California state Senate has approved legislation that would require public schools to include gay history in social studies lessons.

http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/California-GayHistory-Schools/2011/04/17/id/393120

One year after the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, support for offshore oil drilling has rebounded. A new survey indicates that 69 percent of Americans favor increased offshore drilling, with just over three in ten opposed.

http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2011/04/19/cnn-poll-support-for-increased-offshore-oil-drilling-on-rise/

Florida officials are investigating after an unemployment agency spent thousands in taxpayers' money to give 6,000 superhero capes to the unemployed.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1378632/Workforce-Central-Florida-spends-14k-public-funds-6k-superhero-capes-jobless.html

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THIS WEEK’S FEATURED COLUMN

Rich Lowry, National Review

The size of government threatens the American way of life as we know it. The solution is straightforward — cut government. A vibrant grassroots movement insists that it happen, and Washington is lousy with rival plans for how to go about it.

The social threat to the American way of life is as dire, if not more so. But it is more insidious, and more complicated. No grassroots movement has mobilized against it, and no high-profile bipartisan commission is suggesting remedies. Yet it proceeds apace, all but ignored except in the lives of Americans.

Among those trying to sound the alarm is Charles Murray of the American Enterprise Institute, an author and a thinker who has a well-earned reputation for prescience and fearlessness. In a bracing lecture on “The State of White America,” he notes that America has long had an exceptional civic culture. “That culture is unraveling,” he warns. “America is coming apart at the seams. Not the seams of race or ethnicity, but of class.”

Murray takes whites as his subject to avoid the question of whether racism is responsible for the problem he describes, namely the “emergence of classes that diverge on core behaviors and values.”

Murray identifies what he calls the “founding virtues,” such as marriage, industriousness, and religiosity, which have always been considered the social basis of self-government. He looks at whites aged 30–49 and divides them into the top 20 percent socio-economically and the bottom 30 percent. The top tier is basically the upper middle class, the bottom the working class. He finds two worlds, increasingly separate and unequal.

In 1960, everyone was married — 88 percent of the upper middle class and 83 percent of the working class. In 2010, 83 percent of the upper middle class is married and only 48 percent of the working class. This gap “amounts to a revolution in the separation of classes.” In 1960, births to single mothers in the working class were just 6 percent; now they are close to 50 percent.

When it comes to industriousness, there’s the same divergence. In 1960, 1.5 percent of men in the upper middle class were out of the workforce; it’s 2 percent now. In 1968, the number for working-class men hit a low of 5 percent; even before the spike in unemployment after the financial crisis, it was 12 percent in 2008. “The deteriorations in industriousness,” Murray notes, “have occurred in labor markets that were booming as well as in soft ones.”

Although secularization has long been on the rise, it’s more pronounced in the working class. Among the upper middle class, 42 percent say they either don’t believe in God or don’t go to church. In the working class, it’s 61 percent. In other words, a majority of the upper middle class still has some religious commitment, while a majority of the working class does not.

These trends mean, just as it is suffering economically, the working class is getting cut off from the richest sources of social capital: marriage, two-parent families, and church-going. More people are falling into a lower class characterized by men who can’t make a minimal living and single women with children. Murray argues that America can maintain its national power even if these trends continue. With a growing lower class “increasingly unsuited for citizenry in a free society,” though, it will no longer be the country we once knew.

He quotes the 19th-century observer of American life Francis Grund: “The American Constitution is remarkable for its simplicity; but it can only suffice a people habitually correct in their actions, and would be utterly inadequate to the wants of a different nation. Change the domestic habits of the Americans, their religious devotion, and their high respect for morality, and it will not be necessary to change a single letter of the Constitution in order to vary the whole form of their government.”

When it comes to saving the American way, balancing the budget is the easy part.

http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/264455/coming-apart-seams-rich-lowry

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FROM OTHER COLUMNS

“The debt accrued on Mr. Obama's watch is the centerpiece of the forces that are driving the United States to global pauperhood. In 2008, gross public debt was 69 percent of the gross domestic product. This year it will pass 100 percent. Mr. Obama's debt has stifled economic productivity and has driven the country to the point where only 66 percent of men had jobs last year, the lowest figure on record. Were it not for Mr. Obama's drunken-sailor-style spending, facilitated by Democratic supermajorities in both houses of Congress during his first two years, the United States wouldn't be in this fix. Still, the president's answer to economic crisis is to heap on more debt. It's this crippling tax-and-spend Obama creed that's bringing America to the brink of Third World inferiority."

-The Washington Times

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BOOKS, FILM

“Righteous Indignation: Excuse Me While I Save the World” by Andrew Breitbart. “If you ever watch the news, listen to the radio or check the headlines on msn.com, you must read this book. There is a battle going on for the information gateway of our country: the news media complex. And the great general leading the charge, the brilliant strategist who has been literally on the forefront of this fight and has seen it from the inside-out and the ground-up, who makes it possible for you and I to literally hear "the rest of the story".... is Andrew Breitbart….”

http://www.amazon.com/Righteous-Indignation-Excuse-While-ebook/dp/B0047Y16FI/ref=dp_kinw_strp_1?ie=UTF8&m=AG56TWVU5XWC2

Coming in June: “Demonic: How the Liberal Mob Is Endangering America” by Ann Coulter. “The demon is a mob, and the mob is demonic. The Democratic Party activates mobs, depends on mobs, coddles mobs, publicizes and celebrate mobs – it is the mob. Sweeping in its scope and relentless in its argument, Demonic explains the peculiarities of liberals as standard groupthink behavior. To understand mobs is to understand liberals.”

http://www.amazon.com/Demonic-Liberal-Endangering-America-ebook/dp/B004IK8Q8Q/ref=pd_sim_kinc_1?ie=UTF8&m=AG56TWVU5XWC2

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LEFTIST WATCH

“United Nations diplomats will set aside pressing issues of international peace and security to devote an entire day debating the rights of “Mother Earth.” A bloc of mostly socialist governments lead by Bolivia have put the issue on the General Assembly agenda to discuss the creation of a U.N. treaty that would grant the same rights found in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to Mother Nature.”

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2011/04/18/prepares-debate-rights-mother-earth/

President Obama’s ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice, has long been an advocate for weakening American sovereignty in order to benefit the UN and its anti-American agenda. It is a policy known as “engagement,” where the United States subsumes its own vital interests, abandons its traditional role of leadership in the world community, and, as Anne Bayefsky writes, pushes the process of “subcontracting American national security” to the UN.

http://frontpagemag.com/2011/04/18/the-misguided-tenure-of-susan-rice/

Once again we find a Democrat in Congress expressing contempt for the Constitution.

http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/35698

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ACTIVISM

“Join other conservative leaders from across Washington at the Evergreen Leadership Conference: A Conservative President – How Do We Choose? Our conference will be held on the weekend of April 30-May 1, 2011, in Yakima, Washington.”

http://www.evergreenconference.org/about.htm

The RightOnline Conference (Minneapolis MN, June 17-18) brings together influential new media experts, representatives of conservative organizations, and hundreds of citizen activists to provide important leadership and grassroots training, offering the tools and inspiration to more effectively impact public policy in favor of limited government and free enterprise. The agenda provides a solid program of workshops and training seminars on new media strategies and tools that can be used to mobilize and advance free market policies. Speakers include Michelle Malkin, Andrew Breitbart, John Fund, Ed Morrisey, etc.

http://rightonline.com/beta/

The American Family Association urges you to support the Chick-fil-A restaurant chain, under attack by gay activists.

http://www.afa.net/Detail.aspx?id=2147505518

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ISLAM

Women who do not wear headscarves are being threatened with violence and even death by Islamic extremists intent on imposing sharia law on parts of Britain.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1377780/London-Taliban-targeting-women-gays-bid-impose-sharia-law.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

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GLOBALONEY

Seattle is enduring the coldest average high temperature for the first half of April on record at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. And there's no end in sight. "It's an all-time record for the least number of days above 55 degrees".

http://soundpolitics.com/archives/014778.html

The original moonbat, GeorgeMonbiot, columnist for the left wing UK Guardian, now admits that he was bamboozled by fearmongers whipping up anti-nuclear fears. “The unpalatable truth is that the anti-nuclear lobby has misled us all. I've discovered that when the facts don't suit them, the movement resorts to the follies of cover-up they usually denounce..”

http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2011/04/leading_warmist_admits_he_was.html

Time Magazine says your ice maker is killing the Earth.

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/lachlan-markay/2011/04/18/time-your-icemaker-killing-earth

Crazed cult leader Charles Manson has broken a 20-year silence in a prison interview to speak out about the dangers of global warming.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1378178/Charles-Manson-breaks-20-year-silence-40th-anniversary-gruesome-Sharon-Tate-murders.html#ixzz1Ju8mPD2X

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ARTICLES

CBS News on Sunday morning managed to examine incongruities in the U.S. tax system, highlighting those – including a former New York Times reporter – who think the wealthy aren’t paying enough, but without bothering to point out the disproportionate share of the income tax paid by those at the top nor how more than a third of those who file an income tax return pay nothing or even get more back than they put in.

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/brent-baker/2011/04/18/cbs-rues-unfairness-rich-not-paying-enough-without-noting-more-third-am#ixzz1JtqUlDZq

“Barack Obama’s budget address last week ranks among the most dishonest and dishonorable presidential speeches in generations. It contained an avalanche of false and misleading statements. It was shallow and bitterly partisan. Yet the speech served a useful purpose: It provided the American people in general, and Republicans in particular, with the basic line of attack President Obama will use between now and the 2012 election. The White House strategy is clear: argue that Obama wants to restore fiscal balance by raising taxes on “millionaires and billionaires””

http://www.weeklystandard.com/articles/incredible-shrinking-obama_557490.html

Which two have done more to improve your life - Thomas Edison and Steve Jobs, or Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi?

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/apr/18/job-and-liberty-destroyers/

“I'm hoping someone can help me. I left on vacation last week, and when I got back, an entire war was missing. I've looked for it on all the major networks and cable outlets (excepting Fox News), as well as all the major newspapers. Although I've found hints that it still exists somewhere, President Obama's Libyan War is officially missing in action….”

http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/04/a_war_gone_missing.html

“Sarah Palin rides to the sound of the guns. It was a chilly, wet and blustery afternoon in Madison, Wisconsin — one more appropriate for a late-season Packers game than a springtime political rally. The stirring NFL Films theme, “The Classic Battle,” would’ve been a more apt musical choice than Van Halen’s “Right Now” to accompany Palin as she entered the stage outside the state capital building to address thousands of Tea Party members, along with a good number of extremely hostile, expletive-hurling government union rowdies….”

http://blogs.reuters.com/james-pethokoukis/2011/04/16/palin-in-madison-veni-vidi-vici/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C5cZWRx_AMs

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NOTEWORTHY WEBSITES

“You'll go starry-eyed at Nasa’s latest mission success - because the space agency has uploaded thousands of amazing space snaps onto the internet, including shots of previously unseen galaxies, stars and asteroids.”

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1377762/Nasa-posts-thousands-amazing-space-images-internet.html#ixzz1JtlvqSrd

The photos are here:

http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/WISE/main/index.html

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WISE WORDS

"A Constitution is not the act of a Government, but of a people constituting a government and a government without a constitution is a power without right."

-Thomas Paine

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