Saturday, January 7, 2012

op ed review 1/8/12

THIS WEEK’S NEWS

One of the closest Iowa GOP caucuses in history: Romney edges Santorum by just eight votes:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2081986/Iowa-caucus-2012-Mitt-Romney-Rick-Santorum-deadlocked-Iowa.html

Michele Bachmann ended her bid after coming in 6th.

http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2012/01/04/source-bachmann-will-acknowledge-the-reality-of-iowa-vote/

“President plans to cut half a million troops and says US can't afford to wage two wars at once”

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/obama-the-us-can-no-longer-fight-the-worlds-battles-6285629.html

Strategy to include "building up and training foreign military."

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/jan/5/obama-takes-cutback-strategy-to-pentagon/

President Obama has indicated he is prepared to convey information about secret American missile defense technology to Russia.

http://bigpeace.com/jpollak/2012/01/04/obama-to-share-missile-defense-secrets-with-russia/

With the Pentagon pushing to cut costs, Boeing said on Wednesday that it would close its plant in Wichita, Kan., over the next two years and lay off many of the 2,160 workers.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/05/business/boeing-to-shut-wichita-plant.html

President Obama made four recess appointments Wednesday, naming three new members to the National Labor Relations Board and appointing Richard Cordray to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. But the appointments may have been illegal, according to past administration statements.

http://dailycaller.com/2012/01/04/obama-makes-four-recess-appointments-of-dubious-legality/

Investor’s Business Daily: “President Obama's nonrecess "recess appointments" can't be excused as over-the-top electioneering. This president has crossed over from socialistic extremism into lawlessness and, perhaps, impeachability……Now we have the makings of a banana republic, where the rule of clearly written constitutional law is compromised by a ruler's subjective whim.”

http://news.investors.com/Article/596910/201201051902/obamas-banana-republic-abuse-of-power.htm

A group of anti-Obama Facebook groups are planning to fly an “Impeach Obama” Banner over this year’s Super Bowl.

http://www.whitehousedossier.com/2012/01/06/groups-fly-impeach-obama-banner-super-bowl/

Gov. Chris Gregoire said Wednesday she wants Washington to become the seventh state in the nation to make gay marriage legal.

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-201_162-57352305/wash-governor-vows-to-legalize-gay-marriage/

“Take Two Minutes and Stand for Marriage: Call the Washington legislative hotline: 1-800-562-6000 Does it concern you that the legislature is considering redefining marriage? Tell them what you think.”

President Obama can claim partial credit for two of this year’s greatest product failures described in a top-seven disaster list prepared by Yahoo! Finance.”Worst Product Flops of 2011.” The No. 3 prize went to the battery-powered Chevy Volt, which had been touted by Obama as the green-tech model for future vehicles.

http://dailycaller.com/2012/01/04/obama-gets-two-awards-for-worst-product-failures-of-2011/

The Obama administration has embarked on a full-scale effort to “engage” with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.

http://www.commentarymagazine.com/2012/01/04/egypt-muslim-brotherhood-obama-engagement/

Well, that didn’t take long: Now that President Obama has brought US troops home — to fulfill a campaign vow — Iraq is devolving into political chaos verging on civil war.

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/editorials/goodbye_iraq_13BiGjGEmeRVnnHrCCTyKI

Higher-ups within U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services are pressuring rank-and-file officers to rubber-stamp immigrants’ visa applications, sometimes while overlooking concerns about fraud, eligibility or security.

http://www.thedaily.com/page/2012/01/03/010312-news-immigration-strife-1-3/

According to its latest annual report, the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) received $487.4 million in tax dollars over a twelve-month period and performed 329,455 abortions. The number of adoption referrals continued to decline, about 4900.

http://cnsnews.com/news/article/planned-parenthood-s-annual-report-got-4874m-tax-money-did-329445-abortions

Employers are facing more uncertainty in the wake of a letter from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission warning them that requiring a high school diploma from a job applicant might violate the Americans with Disabilities Act.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/jan/1/eeoc-high-school-diploma-might-violate-americans-w/

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THIS WEEK’S FEATURED COLUMN

Steve McCann 1/5/12

The left invariably frames its policy pronouncements under the mantle of so-called "rights" that only the government can guarantee. The implication being that all citizens are entitled and guaranteed, by virtue of living in the United States, to what is defined as a "right." Much of this current approach by the so-called Progressives stems from the State of the Union address delivered by Franklin Roosevelt in 1944 in which he laid out what is commonly referred to as the "Second Bill of Rights." It is a consolidation of socialist thinking begun in the mid-nineteenth century.

These tenets, never contemplated by the founding fathers as God-given rights, have nonetheless become the foundational principle of the Democratic Party. Democrats' successful attempt, along with the tacit concurrence of many in the Republican Party, to force this dogma on American society has entailed at least partial realization of the following:

The right to a useful and remunerative job in the industries or shops or farms or mines of the nation;

The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation;

The right of every family to a decent home;

The right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health;

The right to adequate protection from economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment; and

The right to a good education.

While these are admirable goals for any society, it is impossible to guarantee these ideals. Yet when liberals frame and promote these goals as "rights," the expectation of much the populace is that these are in fact entitlements that every American should be guaranteed. It also becomes much easier for the politicians to manipulate the voters by paying lip-service to these "rights" and spending the country into oblivion in order to provide them.

Out of this mindset has come the minimum wage laws, the creation of innumerable federal agencies to regulate and monitor all aspects of business, 160,000 pages of federal regulations and a tax code exceeding 80,000 pages, Medicare and Medicaid, an overwhelming litany of various welfare and social programs, Social Security, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, the creation of seven new presidential cabinet secretaries since Franklin Roosevelt, ObamaCare, federal intrusion into local education matters, the institution of public-sector unions, and the loss of liberty and individual freedom through the unfettered growth of government.

What has this cost the people of the United States? A society at odds with itself while bent on class warfare and self-satisfaction as the future of succeeding generations is made untenable. From a strictly financial perspective, the picture comes into focus by comparing the last fifty years (1962 to 2012, with 1962 inflation adjusted to 2012 dollars)…..It is projected that by 2016, if no changes are made, the total national debt will be over $21.5 trillion; the debt as a percent of GDP will be in excess of 113%, and overall government spending will exceed $8.0 trillion.

This scenario has come about as a direct result of injecting the Roosevelt "Second Bill of Rights" into the mainstream of American political thinking, coupled with the belief that the phenomenal economic growth the nation experienced over the past fifty years would go on in perpetuity. Therefore, the well-worn adage of "If the United States can (fill in the blank), why can't we provide (fill in the blank) for the American people?" became the standard justification for any new program necessary to guarantee these newly found "rights."

Unfortunately, this mindset is not limited to the Democratic Party. The mainstream of the Republican Party for much of the past fifty years has been aiding and abetting this philosophical approach by simply slowing down the spending but not making a case for why these policies and programs are not "rights," but goals a nation and its peoples should strive to achieve. The only God-given "rights" a government must guarantee are those enumerated in the Constitution: "Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness." Not the assurance of, but the environment to allow all to pursue, happiness.

In 2012 the Republican Party elites, despite the dire future facing the country, have not come to grips with why their preferred candidate for the presidential nomination, Mitt Romney, said as recently as 2004 that "[f]air and affordable housing should be a right, not a privilege." In 2003, George W. Bush and a Republican-controlled Congress, including Rick Santorum, who is also a candidate for president, voted for and passed a massive increase in Medicare spending through a new prescription drug program. The debate leading up to passage revealed the frequent use of the words "rights" and "entitled" when it came to the needs of senior citizens.

The United States will never solve its fiscal or societal dilemmas until its citizens, led by principled leaders unafraid to tell the truth, understand what "rights" are and that life is inherently inequitable and difficult. Government, which is made up of fallible human beings, cannot make life fair and guarantee equal outcomes; it can only provide a framework to enable the individual to pursue those goal. The history of mankind has shown that to do otherwise condemns that nation to an inevitable collapse in which all its people pay the ultimate price.

http://www.americanthinker.com/2012/01/the_lefts_rights_scam.html#ixzz1iiAU7MI2

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FROM OTHER COLUMNS

“That seems to leave Mitt Romney as the last man standing, the Castor Oil Candidate. He’s the heavy favorite Tuesday in New Hampshire, and a new Rassmussen poll shows him leading Rick Santorum by 29 percent to 21 percent. The rap on Mitt is that nobody loves him, and that may be so. But this is the year when nobody likes anybody, and the anybody that nobody likes most is Barack Obama. Another Rasmussen poll shows that a “generic” Republican candidate, meaning almost anybody, would defeat Mr. Obama. Is this the year they gave an election and nobody came?”

-Wes Pruden

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ISLAM

“If I wanted to murder my family or destroy a historic university and yet not give my faith a bad name in the press, I would convert to the Religion of Peace. Yep, if you belong to that lovely creed, you can snap on Christmas and execute your entire clan or burn down a famous college, and the media won’t say shizzle about your faith or your motivation for mayhem.”

http://townhall.com/columnists/douggiles/2012/01/01/the_santa_killer_was_a_religion_of_peacer

“Islamists….are having the best time of their lives since the last Caliphate. The news that the Obama Administration has brought in genocidal Muslim Brotherhood honcho Yusuf Al-Qaradawi to discuss terms of surrender for the transfer of Afghanistan to the Taliban caps a year in which the Brotherhood and the Salafists are looking up carve up Egypt, the Islamists won Tunisia’s elections, Turkey’s Islamist AKP Party purged the last bastions of the secular opposition and Libya’s future as an Islamist state was secured by American, British and French jets and special forces.”

http://www.canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/43608

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GLOBALONEY

James Delingpole: “The money our governments have poured into the renewable (energy) Ponzi scheme has been squandered – and seen to be squandered – on such an epic scale that even the most purblind, state-addicted, left-leaning voter can have failed to notice that something isn't quite right here; that maybe next time it might be an idea to let the market pick energy winners rather than leave it to government, which patently hasn't a clue.”

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/jamesdelingpole/100127634/ha-ha-warmist-losers-for-you-the-war-is-over/

Lying With Numbers: Green Energy Edition

http://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2011/12/30/lying-with-numbers-green-energy-edition/

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THE PRESIDENTIAL RACE

Ann Coulter: So it was a relief to see that when the first votes in the Republican primary were actually cast -- even in a caucus system ideal for zealots, fanatics and mobs -- reason prevailed. Romney won. Not a professional politician, Romney has created a lot of jobs and also knows how to fire people, something heretofore untried in the federal workforce, except briefly by Reagan. Having spent his life turning around companies in the private sector and not sitting on some Senate committee spending money, he'll get to Washington and be as shocked as the rest of us are at how taxpayer money is wasted even by conservative senators like Santorum. Iowa shows that Republicans are still the party of normal people -- normal people who are determined to defeat Obama…”

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=48571

After the caucuses, Romney gave a speech with a theme worthy of a national election, contrasting a “merit-based” or “opportunity” society with Barack Obama’s promotion of an “entitlement society,” which Romney termed “a fundamental corruption of the American spirit”: “Once we thought ‘entitlement’ meant that Americans were entitled to the privilege of trying to succeed. But today the new entitlement battle is over the size of the check you get from Washington. And the only people who truly enjoy any real rewards are those who do the redistributing — the government.”

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/suddenly-a-fun-candidate/2012/01/04/gIQAnn0jaP_story.html

Gov. Chris Christie at a Romney rally in Iowa: "Let's be real clear. President Barack Obama came out to Iowa three years ago, and he talked to you about hope and change. Well, let me tell you, after three years of Obama, we are hopeless and changeless, and we need Mitt Romney to bring us back, to bring America back.”

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2011/12/30/christie_after_three_years_of_obama_we_are_hopeless_and_changeless.html

Eight votes don’t mean much, but even had Mitt Romney lost out to Rick Santorum in Tuesday's Iowa caucuses, he would still have emerged as the big winner last night. He didn’t lock up the nomination, but he acquired a key strategic advantage. To beat Romney, you’ve got to get him one on one and win all the non-Romney votes out there.

http://thehill.com/opinion/columnists/dick-morris/202253-romneys-huge-win-

“It's not true that the Republican Party is against the conservative movement, and wants to attain its demise. The two need each other. With over 40 percent of the voting public defining itself as "conservative" (warning: these self-definers might not all please or align with the movement conservatives), the movement gives the party a strong base to build on. But with only 40 percent in its corner, the movement needs the party to expand its appeal and build coalitions around it. One who knew this was President Reagan, whose two picks for vice president were George Bush the elder (and Sen. Richard Schweiker, a Pennsylvanian who was a great deal more liberal). Reagan also frequently spoke of his past as a Democrat. When conservatives get their own numbers over the 50 percent mark, they can afford to dismiss the Republican Party. Until then, they ought to face facts. It isn't true, either, that the Establishment's hit on Gingrich was a RINO-esque coup against the conservative movement, and an effort to kneecap the Right. For one thing, this Establishment includes Rich Lowry, Ann Coulter, Tom Coburn and others, a collection of squishes if ever there was one, along with useful idiots such as George Will.”

http://washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/columnists/2012/01/truth-and-untruth-about-gop-establishment/2057386#ixzz1iVMYALfE

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ARTICLES

If the individual states of our nation are a laboratory of democracy, then the states of Europe are the laboratory of socialism. What we are witness to in Greece, and eventually in Spain, Italy, and possibly France, is the painful death of the welfare state…..One of the first organs to fail is the socialized health care program. No matter its stated merits, a serious and impactful socialized medicine program is simply too expensive for any state to long sustain. The lesson here is for our nation to rid ourselves of ObamaCare entirely before it becomes embedded into the fabric of society, because it too will be rooted out by the forces of economics. It is easier to throw out the seed than uproot the plant, so the sooner this is done, the better. Anything less is a form a gross medical malpractice.

http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/12/european_health_care_economic_malpractice.html#ixzz1i8GQ5i6z

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. claims Jim Crow is returning. In a recent speech, Mr. Holder said that attempts by states to pass voter identification laws will disenfranchise minorities, rolling back the clock to the evil days of segregation. He said that a growing number of minorities fear that “the same disparities, divisions and problems” now afflict America as they did in 1965 prior to the Voting Rights Act. According to the Obama administration, our democracy is being threatened by racist Republicans. Hence, the Justice Department must prevent laws requiring a photo ID to vote from being enacted.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/dec/30/voter-id-terrifies-democrats-will-obama-steal-the-/

Ryan Jerome was enjoying his first trip to New York City on business when the former Marine Corps gunner walked up to a security officer at the Empire State Building and asked where he should check his gun. That was when Jerome’s nightmare began. The security officer called police and Jerome spent the next two days in jail. The 28-year-old with no criminal history now faces a mandatory minimum sentence of three and a half years in prison. If convicted, his sentence could be as high as fifteen years. Jerome has a valid concealed carry permit in Indiana and visited New York believing that it was legal to bring his firearm.

http://dailycaller.com/2012/01/03/marine-faces-fifteen-years-behind-bars-for-unknowingly-violating-gun-law/#ixzz1iQKU81ui

John Nolte: Advice for Hollywood: Top 10 Ways Hollywood Can Win Its Audience Back

http://bighollywood.breitbart.com/jjmnolte/2012/01/02/top-10-ways-hollywood-can-win-its-audience-back/

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NOTEWORTHY WEBSITES

Impressed by the effectiveness of the liberal Center for American Progress, a group of conservative journalists and operatives are preparing to engage in their own sincerest form of flattery. The Center for American Freedom’s goal is to wage a well-funded assault on the Obama White House and the liberal domination of partisan online media. The group also will have a campaign-style war room directed by two former heads of the Republican National Committee’s impressive research operation. And CAF's media-monitoring unit will attack unfair reporting at MSNBC, just as Media Matters has done to Fox News.

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0112/71099.html#ixzz1ib7i8A1f

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LATE-NITE

Leno: According to the Mayans, the world is supposed to end in the year 2012. Are you buying that? When's the last time you even ran into a Mayan?........Experts say traffic deaths are down because the bad economy means more cars are being repossessed, and all the unemployment means we don't have as many people driving to work. So you know what that means? The White House economic plan is also their highway safety plan.

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WISE WORDS

"The aim of every political constitution is, or ought to be, first to obtain for rulers men who possess most wisdom to discern, and most virtue to pursue, the common good of the society; and in the next place, to take the most effectual precautions for keeping them virtuous whilst they continue to hold their public trust."

-James Madison

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