Saturday, May 21, 2011

op ed review 5/22


In search of Hispanic votes and a long-shot immigration overhaul, President Barack Obama on Tuesday stood at the U.S.-Mexico border for the first time since winning the White House and declared it more secure than ever. He mocked Republican lawmakers for blocking immigration over border security alone, saying “they won't be happy until they get a moat with alligators along the border”.

Obama administration officials turned down pleas from lawmakers and public-interest groups to place the names of Mexican drug cartels on their list of designated terrorist organizations. This would have given law enforcement agencies the authority to use such measures as the Patriot Act to crack down on suspected drug cartel members and associates. The director of Homeland Security’s counternarcotics enforcement, said that using such laws and tactics "might be too severe."

The Obama administration approved 204 new waivers to Obamacare in the last month, bringing the total to 1,372.

President Obama says “there is nothing more important” than a government job.

President Obama visited the Allison Transmission Headquarters in Indianapolis and bragged about how democrats saved the hybrid plant with $62 million in stimulus cash. The plant has approximately 2500 employees. That comes out to $25,120 per employee.

First Lady Michelle Obama scheduled a poetry evening at the White House, inviting Chicago poet and rapper, Lonnie Rashid Lynn, Jr., AKA “Common.” Lynn is controversial, in part because his poetry includes threats to shoot police and at least one passage calling for the “burn[ing]” of then-President George W. Bush.

Donald Trump bows out of the 2012 contest.

Huckabee is also out.

The Mitt Romney campaign is voicing little surprise at the Wall Street Journal Editorial Board’s scathing critique of the potential presidential candidate and the health care plan he put into place as Massachusetts governor. The Journal’s Editorial Board lambasted what has since been called “Romneycare” as the predecessor to “Obamacare.”

You'd think that with gas prices this high, sales of hybrid or electric cars would really get charged up. Think again. So far, they make up only about two percent of all vehicles sold in the U.S.

The Senate rejected Republican-backed legislation intended to speed up and expand offshore oil and gas drilling

Republican presidential hopefuls criticized President Obama's speech on the Middle East Thursday. “President Obama has thrown Israel under the bus,” Mitt Romney charged in a statement.

Rep. Ron Paul, the eccentric Texas libertarian, spoke out against the US operation that killed Osama bin Laden. “The congressman said the operation "absolutely was not necessary," and that "respect for the rule of law and world law and international law" should apparently preclude any such operation…”

Arizona lawmakers want more fence along the border with Mexico — whether the federal government thinks it's necessary or not. They've got a plan that could get a project started using online donations and prison labor. If they get enough money, all they would have to do is get cooperation from landowners and construction could begin as soon as this year.

If you listen to the passengers and crew who flew on American Airlines Flight 1561 last weekend, there's no doubt about what happened on their harrowing trip: A Yemeni man shrieking "Allahu akbar!" at the top of his lungs more than 30 times rushed the cockpit door twice intending to take down the plane and kill everyone on board. The clammy, sweaty lone male passenger exhibited classic symptoms of what Middle East scholar and author Daniel Pipes has dubbed "Sudden Jihad Syndrome"

Legislation requiring voters to present photo ID at the polls has ignited a partisan battle, but an overwhelming majority of Minnesotans support the idea….Eighty percent of respondents said they favor a photo ID requirement….Democrats have almost universally opposed it, arguing that it will prevent members of some groups from voting.

By a 47% to 19% margin, Americans say they would want their member of Congress to vote against raising the U.S. debt ceiling.. Republicans oppose raising the debt ceiling by 70% to 8% and independents by 46% to 15%. Democrats FAVORr raising the ceiling by 33% to 26%.

Increasingly, it seems that the American flag is joining toy guns and dodgeball on the banned-from-school list. The latest story on this front involves The Butterfield Elementary in Orange, Massachusetts, where a teacher told an 11-year-old boy that he may not hang his depiction of Old Glory because it might “offend” another student.

High pay and benefits for lifeguards in Newport Beach CA is the latest example of frustrating levels of compensation for public employees. More than half the city’s full-time lifeguards are paid a salary of over $100,000 and all but one of them collect more than $100,000 in total compensation including benefits.

Great moments in socialized medicine: the number of people in England who are being forced to wait more than 18 weeks for medical treatment has risen by 26% in the last year, while the number who had to wait longer than six months has shot up by 43%.

Anticipating the elimination of the military ban on homosexuality, the Office of the Chief of Navy Chaplains has decided that same-sex couples in the Navy will be able to get married in Navy chapels, and that Navy chaplains will be allowed to perform the ceremonies -- if homosexual marriage is legal in the state where the unions are to be performed.

A Michigan man who won $2 million in a state lottery game continues to collect food stamps 11 months after striking it rich. And there's nothing the state can do about it, at least for now.



Lauri Regan 5/13

Yes Mr. President, I Do Want Alligators in My Moat

In yet another one of Obama's highly touted campaign speeches (are there any other type?), the President once again chose to use derisive rhetoric to whip up the masses against those horrible Republicans. Obama attempted to put the GOP on the defensive by suggesting that Republicans not only want the country surrounded by a moat to prevent evil immigrants from entering, but that in order to ensure success, they would fill the moat with alligators…The country is in economic turmoil and is being threatened by terrorists who originate in the Middle East and Northern Africa but who are crossing our borders undetected, and our president wants to lead from behind so that he can campaign (and bash Republicans) from in front.

Well Mr. President, I am proud to say that I do want alligators in a moat that protects our country. And I hope to God that you have one or more decision-makers in your administration that understand that it will take a lot more than killing Osama bin Laden and occasional drone strikes in Afghanistan to protect the citizens who hired you for that job. For while you traverse the country spiking the football and fundraising for the 2012 election, there are way too many terrorists who want to see each and every U.S. citizen dead and who are not taking time out of their planning stages to play golf; party with hateful, racist rappers; and hobnob with the rich and famous at $35,000 a plate dinners.

In addition to the more than $500,000 that Obama spends on speechwriters, he also pays up to $100,000 to an outside public relations firm that he apparently uses for teleprompter lessons, "speech preparation training," "speech writing services," and "speech coaching services." Obama likely feels as if each of the meaningless metaphors that his speechwriters develop is worth the price we pay, but I am getting sick and tired of his kitschy, fighting rhetoric designed to pit citizen against citizen…..before joking about border security, perhaps Mr. Obama should visit the U.S. towns in the southwest that are on the front lines of dealing with the issue of illegal immigration and Mexican drug cartels. For Barack Obama cares more about picking up the votes of the millions of illegal immigrants and the American Hispanic community than he does about helping U.S. citizens in need of protection from dangerous criminals.

Of particular concern to our country's national security, however, is the growing presence of Hezbollah just south of our Mexican border. Does the President need a refresher course in the terrorist tactics of Hezbollah, "recognized by many experts as the 'A' team of Muslim terrorist organizations," according to a U.S. intelligence expert? According to this agent, "[w]e are looking at 15 or 20 years that Hezbollah has been setting up shop in Mexico...I consider Hezb'allah much more dangerous in that sense because of strategic thinking; they think more long-term." Hezbollah's long-term plans include their continued partnership with the drug cartels involving the exchange of Hezbollah expertise for cash and protection. So while Hezbollah trains Mexican drug lords in the arts of firearms and explosives and sophisticated tunnel development, President Obama believes that extensive plans to secure the southern border are just an irresistible opportunity to slap the GOP that takes the issue quite seriously.

If building a moat and filling it with alligators is what it takes to protect the American people, my children, family, neighbors, and friends, then I expect our elected leaders to do just that. What I do not expect the President of the United States to do is laugh it up at his adversaries' expense in order to gain political momentum in the face of falling poll numbers. American values, freedoms, and lives are on the line daily and I am sick of this administration calling me racist, Islamaphobic, conservative, evil, or whatever label the next hired gun comes up with to describe U.S. citizens who recognize that the country is at war and secure borders are no laughing matter. I want a President who will not demean me, his fellow citizens, the other elected officials chosen to lead at the State and Federal level, and those who disagree with him. That is beneath the office of the President and it shows contempt for the very people who elected him.

So as Obama announces yet another outreach to the world's Muslims, I await my disgust at listening to him offer carrots to a people who feel nothing but disdain for America and its President. And I have no expectation that he will call a spade a spade and denounce Islamic jihadists. I fully expect to hear Obama throw out yet another euphemism to describe the state of the Mideast's turmoil rather than use the absurd phrases "overseas contingency operation" and "man-caused disaster" to describe the war and the terrorist acts committed by members of the population to whom he will be speaking (the majority of whom either support such acts or remain silent in their face).…..we are being led from behind by a man who makes jokes about our national security. Will it take terrorist attacks in southern U.S. towns before this administration stops campaigning, stops making jokes, and takes their job seriously? From a President who labels the rapper Common as a "socially conscious" poet; who befriended terrorist Bill Ayers and anti-Semites Rashid Khalidi and Reverend Wright; and whose administration labels the Muslim Brotherhood and Syrian dictator Bashir al Assad as moderate, we can only hope that in 2012, the American people build a moat around the White House, fill it with hungry Republicans, and hang signs that say Obamas Keep Out.

Edited from a longer column, read it here:



"One of the shameful hallmarks of a dictatorship is the restriction of movement -- telling citizens or groups they cannot travel or relocate freely. We are now witnessing a shocking example of that dictatorial practice at the hands of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), which is insisting that a major U.S. employer may not move some of its operations from one state to another because to do so might somehow violate workers' rights. The case in point involves famed aircraft manufacturer, Boeing, which is building a second assembly line for its new 787 jetliners in South Carolina. That's a no-no, says the NLRB. ... The NLRB has filed a complaint against Boeing, a firm headquartered in Chicago, for daring to choose where they may locate one of their plants. In this case, Boeing is being told it cannot make the move on the specious grounds that the move constitutes an unfair labor practice. The unfair labor practice? South Carolina has a state right-to-work law, which ensures employees the right to either join a union or not to join a union as they see fit. Imagine that, a law that allows a worker to choose whether or not to join a union! ... When a federal agency takes it into its grubby hands to dictate where a firm may locate some of its facilities America stands at the dividing line between freedom and tyranny."

-Michael Reagan

"When you look at other countries and the history of the world in general, we are all just amazingly, unbelievably wealthy in this country. We have technology and opportunities that are insane; we can't even comprehend how well off we are compared to people who used to have to live in huts and fight for every meal. When you look at it objectively, every one of us in this country is a billionaire. And what did we do to earn all this incredible wealth? For most of us, the answer is: absolutely nothing. We were just born with it. So we take it for granted. And we demand even more. There is another type of rich person, though -- the working rich. The people who create. These are the people who made all the benefits we enjoy in society today. Thanks to their creativity and initiative, we have all the technological marvels we enjoy today. Because of their hard work, we have all these companies that give us cushy 9-to-5 jobs where we earn sums of money most of the world couldn't even imagine possessing. And are we thankful? Do we say, 'Thank you, rich people, for making all these things so we can benefit from them. I can't even believe how simple and easy my life is because of you'? No, we demand more from them, because we're the idle rich, and we think the working rich owe us everything."

-Frank J. Fleming



Harry Reid: ‘The Founding Fathers Would Support Telling Boeing Where They Can Build Factories’

Why Is George Soros Spending Over $48 Million Funding Media Organizations? “… it was again proof that a strategy of funding journalism was a powerful way to influence the American public.”

Venezuelan police found the murdered body of a newspaper columnist and opposition political activist dumped on wasteland.

Dennis Prager: “How Leftism Poisoned a Psychiatrist’s Mind……In the course of my lifetime, I have surely read many thousands of columns. And since I read those with which I differ as often as I do those with which I agree, many have annoyed, some even angered, me. But I do not recall reading a column that I considered as reprehensible as Professor Klitzman’s. What other word can describe a brother using the killing of his sister’s murderer to badmouth America and hold it ultimately responsible for her death?.....Asking what America did to elicit the hatred of Muslim terrorists is morally equivalent to asking what Jews did to arouse Nazi hatred, what blacks did to cause whites to lynch them, what Ukrainians did to arouse Stalin’s hatred, or what Tibetans did to incite China’s harshly repressive treatment of them.”



“The Terrorist Next Door: How the Government is Deceiving You About the Islamist Threatby Erick Stakelbeck. Michelle Malkin says “You are holding in your hands the unvarnished, invaluable reporting that the rest of the “mainstream media” can’t or won’t do. My friend Erick has traveled the world to interview terrorists who are plotting the establishment of a global Islamic caliphate—and who have succeeded in Islamicizing large swaths of Europe. He has investigated fifth column organizations on our soil that pledge allegiance not to our Republic, but to sharia law. In The Terrorist Next Door, he also blows the whistle on how the same reckless, open-borders policies I exposed in Invasion nine years ago continue to aid and abet jihadi-sympathizers from Somalia and elsewhere.”

“The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Vietnam War” by Phillip Jennings. Jennings shatters culturally-accepted myths and busts politically incorrect lies that liberal pundits and leftist professors have been telling you for years. The Vietnam War was the most important—and successful—campaign to defeat Communism. Without the sacrifices made and the courage displayed by our military, the world might be a different place. The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Vietnam War reveals the truth about the battles, players, and policies of one of the most controversial wars in U.S. history.

Dick Cheney has finished his memoir, according to his daughter, and the book is scheduled to come out on Aug. 30. Liz Cheney said the book, currently being edited, will be “very straightforward,” with “a lot of in-depth analysis of really critically important issues.” Cheney’s memoir, “In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir,” is being published by Threshold Editions, a conservative imprint of Simon & Schuster run by Republican strategist and former Cheney aide Mary Matalin.



For his criticism of math education in Washington State, Prof. Cliff Mass has been fired at KUOW. This is his side of the story and if it gets your goat, contact the emails at the end.



Mitt Romney has all the trappings of a GOP presidential front-runner except for one important thing: enthusiasm from party activists.

What a difference a debate makes. Businessman Herman Cain is the big winner in the latest Daily Caller/ConservativeHome presidential primary tracking poll, surging forward to become a top contender, despite generally being considered an underdog.

Jack Kemp once described Cain as having 'the voice of Othello, the looks of a football player, the English of Oxfordian quality and the courage of a lion'.

“Former House speaker Newt Gingrich threw his hat into the presidential ring on Wednesday. Republicans should toss it back onto Gingrich’s head and ask him to kindly go away. He is the wrong man to lead the GOP to victory in November 2012.”

Top Republicans are increasingly convinced that President Barack Obama will be easily reelected if stronger GOP contenders do not emerge, and some are virtually begging Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels to add some excitement to the slow-starting nomination race.

Why, after all this, does President Obama enjoy an approval rating near 50%? How can people even think of voting for him over the Republican nominee in 2012? Well wonder no more. The economy. The Great Recession, which began in 2007, ended in June 2009, just five months after Obama was sworn into office. Since June 2009, real Gross Domestic Product has grown in every quarter, at an average annual rate of 2.8%. In the preceding eight years, from 2000 to 2008 (4th quarter to 4th quarter), average growth was only 1.7% per year.

You can expect the revived talk of a Rick Perry for president campaign to shift into hyperdrive now that Rush Limbaugh is declaring the Texas governor the best hope Republicans have to bring life to a lackluster presidential field. Limbaugh, on Wednesday's show, declares the staunchly anti-Washington Perry has the mix of message and personality and appearance to drive Democrats "nuts" and dispel America of the notion that President Barack Obama is unbeatable in wake of the death of Osama bin Laden.

Economists Timothy Conley and Bill Dupor have studied the effects of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (the purported stimulus bill) with great rigor. Earlier this week, they reported their findings in a paper titled "The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act: Public Sector Jobs Saved, Private Sector Jobs Forestalled." The paper is dense and rather lengthy, and requires considerable study. Here, however, is the bottom line: “Our benchmark results suggest that the ARRA created/saved approximately 450 thousand state and local government jobs and destroyed/forestalled roughly one million private sector jobs.”



Tell ‘em what you think…..

Rare color photos from the depression era:

If anyone is curious what I was busy with last week, this is my other civic engagement:



Leno: President Obama’s approval rating, which got a bump after killing bin Laden, has slipped again. Which is really bad news — not for the president, for Moammar Gadhafi…….Scientists say they have found the "master switch" that controls obesity. It's called the refrigerator light…….To save money, Washington State has canceled next year’s presidential primaries. If we could just get the other 49 states to do this, the candidates wouldn’t have anywhere to campaign and we would have the best election year ever……..Mitt Romney is having major trouble with endorsements. He keeps getting endorsed by President Obama. They have the same healthcare plan……..There’s talk in Hollywood about doing another “Mad Max” movie, where gas is so expensive that people steal and kill to get it. It takes place sometime in the future — like July.



"Born in other countries, yet believing you could be happy in this, our laws acknowledge, as they should do, your right to join us in society, conforming, as I doubt not you will do, to our established rules."

-Thomas Jefferson

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