Saturday, July 14, 2012

op ed review 7/15


THIS WEEK’S NEWS
The national debt has increased by more than $64,000 per federal taxpayer since Barack Obama was inaugurated president.

“Americans Will Work More than 6 Months to Pay Cost of Gov't in 2012”

Two-thirds of likely voters say President Obama has kept his 2008 campaign promise to change America — but it’s changed for the worse, according to a sizable majority. A new poll for The Hill found 56 percent of likely voters believe Obama’s first term has transformed the nation in a negative way, compared to 35 percent who believe the country has changed for the better under his leadership.

Voters continue to support across-the-board federal spending cuts to help solve the federal budget crisis.…the highest level of support since Rasmussen Reports first asked the question in August 2011.

In the wake of the Supreme Court decision to uphold Arizona’s law allowing police to check the immigration status of those they detain, an overwhelming majority of Americans say they want to see their own states enact the same kinds of laws.  Support was high across most demographics, including self-identified Republicans and independents, and even Hispanics favored the policy by a 55 percent to 41 percent

Karl Rove:  “Elections are about numbers, and right now the president's are bad……According to exit polls, 44.8 million Republicans showed up to vote in 2004 while only 41.4 million did in 2008. Almost all those 3.4 million Republicans who stayed home have been energized by Mr. Obama's agenda and are now eager to vote against him….”

President Obama’s Department of Health and Human Services released an official policy directive undermining the welfare reform law of 1996. The new policy guts the federal work requirements that have been the foundation of that law — one of the most successful domestic policy reforms in the 20th century. “The result is the end of welfare reform as we know it.”

Eighty-three percent of American physicians have considered leaving their practices over Obamacare, according to a survey released by the Doctor Patient Medical Association.

The Obama administration is using Spanish language soap operas to push food stamps…….”presents a semi-dramatic scenario involving characters convincing others to get on food stamps, or explaining how much healthier it is to be on food stamps.”

“It wasn’t quite a game changer, but Mitt Romney finally gave voters a moment of magic in his NAACP convention speech this Wednesday. For once, style and content rose to the occasion. He even earned himself a standing ovation from a civil rights lobby – a big win for a Republican candidate. It was never going to be an easy gig. “If you want a president who will make things better for the African-American community, you are looking at him,” he said. “You take a look.” “Take a look.” It was cocky, cheeky, maybe even a little rude. But it’s also making a YouTube sensation.”

Presbyterians debated for more than three hours on whether to change their definition of marriage. In the end, they preserved the traditional meaning, upholding a ban on officiating gay weddings.

Supporters of gay marriage in Washington say they have raised more than $2M to oppose R74 in November.
Preserve Marriage Washington, which collected the signatures to get R-74 on the ballot, has only raised $135,000.
You may want to donate:

President Obama says Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez doesn’t pose a "serious" national security threat to the United States.
Mitt Romney responded to President Obama's comments on Hugo Chavez with this statement: “….a stunning and shocking comment by the President…….Hugo Chavez has provided safe haven to drug kingpins, encouraged regional terrorist organizations that threaten our allies like Colombia, has strengthened military ties with Iran and helped it evade sanctions, and has allowed a Hezbollah presence within his country's borders. And he is seeking to lead – together with the Castros – a destabilizing, anti-democratic, and anti-American ‘Bolivarian Revolution’ across Latin America. President Obama's remarks continue a pattern of weakness in his foreign policy, one that has emboldened adversaries and diminished U.S. influence in every region of the world. As president, I will speak clearly and resolutely on the challenges we face so that both our allies and our adversaries will know where we stand.”

An Arizona man was sentenced to 60 days in jail, given a $12,180 fine and granted three years probation for holding a Bible study in his home. City officials claim that he’s running an operation “without the required permits.”

Jane Pitt, mother of actor Brad Pitt, has been scared into silence by the hate-filled, vulgar and even violent reaction to her public assertion that Barack Obama is “a liberal who supports the killing of unborn babies and same-sex marriage.” Pitt has even been the subject of death threats following her letter to the editor of Missouri’s Springfield News-Leader in which she asserted failure to vote for Republican presumptive presidential candidate Mitt Romney constituted a vote for Obama.

Socialized medicine:  Nearly 12,000 patients die needlessly in UK hospitals every year due to blunders by staff, researchers warn. They say that doctors and nurses routinely misdiagnose illnesses, fail to treat patients quickly enough or give them the wrong dose of drug.
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THIS WEEK’S FEATURED COLUMN
Arthur Herman  7/12
“A house divided against itself cannot stand.”  

Those were Abe Lincoln’s words in his first inaugural in 1861, as America was running headlong into civil war.  Now we’re a house divided again and another civil war is coming, with the 2012 election as its Gettysburg. Call it America’s coming civil war between the Makers and the Takers.

On one side are those who create wealth, America’s private sector–the very ones targeted by President Obama’s tax hikes announced Monday. On the other are the public employee unions; left-leaning intelligentsia who see the growth of government as index of progress; and the millions of Americans now dependent on government through a growing network of government transfer payments, from Medicaid and Social Security to college loans and corporate bailouts and handouts (think GM and Solyndra).

Over the past century America’s private sector has been the source of productivity, innovation, creativity, and growth–and gave us the iPhone and iPad. The public sector has been the engine of entitlement, stagnation, and decline -- and gave us Detroit and the South Bronx. The private sector built the strongest economy in the world.  It armed the free world in World War Two, and then in the three decades after the war turned America into the most prosperous society history had ever seen. It revived America in the Reagan and Clinton years, and thanks to the Bush tax cuts brought this country back from economic collapse after 9/11.

In those same years a growing public sector, by contrast, turned Europe into a cesspool of debt, stalled economies, and chronic social dysfunction that’s set the streets of Athens -- and perhaps other European capitals--on fire. That’s where we’re headed, too, more rapidly than we like to think.

That public sector–state, local, and federal -- now consumes 40% of GDP, compared to 33% just twelve years ago. It’s brought us to the point where 48% of Americans are now on some form of government handout, from 44% when Obama took office–almost a fifth more than during the Reagan years. And too many of them have been programmed to believe they have no future unless the government takes more from the Makers -- precisely what Obama promised on Monday. So we know which side Obama and the Democratic party are on. Like John Brown’s raid on Harper’s Ferry, ObamaCare has been a wakeup call to what’s at stake–just as the turbulent events in Wisconsin showed how far Democrats are willing to go to win.

We’re not Greece yet -- or on the brink of Bull Run. But it’s time for Romney and Republicans to make clear which side they’re on -- and to make it clear there can’t be government transfer payments, from Medicaid to Social Security, without a strong vibrant private sector to pay for them. They don’t have to stoop to the Democrats’ tactics. They just have to give our free market, private sector economy the robust defense it deserves.

A country where more Americans go on Social Security disability than get jobs-- as happened last month--can’t stand. Lincoln hoped in 1861 that the “angels of our better nature” would pull us back from catastrophe. He was wrong. Let’s hope in 2012 those angels still hover -- and can make a house divided whole once more.



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FROM OTHER COLUMNS
"Justice Roberts apparently forgot that his first duty is not to protect the 'image' of the court but to protect the Constitution, of which the court is the primary steward. Whether or not he intended to, Justice Roberts breathed new life, for now, into the Great Destroyer, making November that much more important. If the tea party was taking a brief nap -- as some have suggested (but I don't believe) -- the federal government has awoken it with an ear-piercing alarm that will not quit ringing before Election Day. ... [L]et's truly reflect on America's Constitution and its liberty and redouble our resolve and commitment to recapturing both."
                   -David Limbaugh

"Given how many more Americans define themselves as conservative rather than as liberal, let alone than as left, how does one explain the success of left-wing policies? One answer is the appeal of entitlements and a desire to be taken care of. It takes a strong-willed citizen to vote against receiving free benefits. But an even greater explanation is the saturation of Western society by left-wing hate directed at the right. The left's demonization, personal vilification, and mockery of its opponents have been the most powerful tools in the left-wing arsenal for a century. Since Stalin labeled Leon Trotsky -- the man who was the father of Russian Bolshevism! -- a 'fascist,' the Left has labeled its ideological opponents evil. And when you control nearly all of the news media and schools, that labeling works. The liberal media even succeeded in blaming the right wing for the assassination of President John F. Kennedy even though his assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, was a pro-Soviet, pro-Castro communist. Similarly, just one day after a deranged man, Jared Loughner, attempted to kill Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and murdered six people in the process, The New York Times columnist Paul Krugman wrote that it was right-wing hate that had provoked Loughner.... Krugman made it all up. But what matters to most of those who speak for the left is not truth. It is destroying the good name of its opponents. That is the modus operandi of the left. It works."
                 -Dennis Prager

"With Barack Obama at the helm, and David Axelrod charting the course against Mitt Romney, this nation is about to set sail into a poisonous sea of class envy and hatred. 'Bain' Capital will be 'Bane' Capital, as in evil. 'Venture capital' will be 'vulture capital.' This November's election might boil down to a fundamental debate between the merits of markets vs. central planning and wealth redistribution; at the least, that's where the rhetoric is taking us. If I were advising Mitt Romney, I'd tell him to bone up not only on the good he did at Bain Capital ... but on Hayek, Friedman, Hazlitt, Mises, Laffer, and, most of all, Marx. He might Google the word 'agitprop,' since he will be precisely such a target. And if Romney does this right, he has [the] chance not only to win Americans' vote but to educate them about the wondrous free-market system that has made their nation the greatest marvel in human history -- and which they won't learn about from Obama and Axelrod."
                  -Paul Kengor
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GLOBALONEY
Americans sweltering in the recent record-breaking heatwave may not believe it - but it seems that our ancestors suffered through much hotter summers in times gone by, several of them within the last 2,000 years. A large team of scientists making a comprehensive study of data from tree rings say that in fact global temperatures have been on a falling trend for the past 2,000 years and they have often been noticeably higher than they are today - despite the absence of any significant amounts of human-released carbon dioxide in the atmosphere back then.
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ISLAM
Prominent Muslim clerics in Egypt have begun to call for the demolition of Egypt’s Great Pyramids—or, in the words of Saudi Sheikh Ali bin Said al-Rabi‘i, those “symbols of paganism.”  Most recently, Bahrain’s “Sheikh of Sunni Sheikhs” and President of National Unity, Abd al-Latif al-Mahmoud, called on Egypt’s new president to “destroy the Pyramids and accomplish what the Sahabi Amr bin al-As could not.” This is a reference to the Muslim Prophet Muhammad’s companion, Amr bin al-As and his Arabian tribesmen, who invaded and conquered Egypt circa 641. Under al-As and subsequent Muslim rule, many Egyptian antiquities were destroyed as relics of infidelity. According to early Muslim writers, the great Library of Alexandria itself—deemed a repository of pagan knowledge contradicting the Koran—was destroyed under bin al-As’s reign and in compliance with Caliph Omar’s command.

Bizarre Story:  Celebrity photographer in the UK kicked by Muslim woman she tried to help, then arrested for “racially aggravated assault.”

“Taliban shoot woman 9 times in public execution as men cheer”  Officials in Afghanistan, where the amateur video was filmed, believe the woman was executed because two Taliban commanders had a dispute over her.  "In order to save face," they accused her of adultery.  Then they "faked a court to decide about the fate of this woman and in one hour, they executed the woman.”

The supreme leader of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood – and of its president elect Mohammed Morsi – has called for jihad on Israel.
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LEFTIST WATCH
DNC Chair describes herself as “pretty happy” with the ongoing economic recovery.
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BOOKS, FILM
In an interview with The Daily Caller, author Brad Thor remembered the late conservative activist Andrew Breitbart and urged people to take his place in the battle of ideas. “We may have lost a general, but the war goes on,” Thor said. “He left big shoes to fill. We all need to step up; we all are Andrew Breitbart, and it is our duty. That man’s family shared him with us, and we owe it to them — we owe it to the country –to all step up.” “The general falls. The battle’s not over.”

Can Americans discern between the “dreams” of President Obama and those of the Founding Fathers? The makers of the upcoming documentary film “2016: Obama’s America” hope so. “I’ve got a strong desire to defend against the changes in our culture, our life, our laws, our freedom. We now have someone in office who has professed a desire for change, and this has disturbed me,” producer Gerald R. Molen tells Inside the Beltway.

“Barack Obama's Brother to Make Film Debut in Anti-Obama Documentary”…..”D’Souza seems most curious to know why the half-brother of the most powerful man on the planet lives in poverty and without any financial help from President Obama.”
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ELECTION
All the latest polls show President Obama is losing …well, everyone. He’s down 13 points with voters ages 18 to 25, nearly half of whom think he’s done a mediocre job…..The healthy young don’t really care about health care, but they do care about jobs — and nearly 2 million 20- to 24-year-olds are unemployed….. Nationwide, his approval rating among blacks is down nine points to 77 percent while Mr. Romney’s has doubled to 18 percent. White support is down six points from November 2008 to just 38 percent, according to a Gallup poll in June. Despite his nonstop class warfare, Mr. Obama has dropped most among less-affluent whites, down nine points with whites who make $60,000 or less per year……“President Obama does not currently have enough white support to win re-election even if he retains his minority base from 2008,” Real Clear Politics’ David Paul Kuhn wrote late last month. “Today, fewer whites back Obama than any Democratic candidate since Walter Mondale. Romney does not need to emulate Ronald Reagan to win. Should he match Reagan’s share of the white vote in 1984 — presuming all else remains constant since 2008 — Romney would rout Obama.”

Pollster Pat Caddell:  “The Supreme Court’s Obamacare-affirming decision--which can be summed up as “Read John Roberts’ lips, it’s a tax”--has put a political cudgel in the hands of Republicans. The cudgel, of course, is taxes.  But a huge nail is also embedded in the cudgel: the fundamental deceit of Obamacare. Yet in the week since the Court’s decision, Republicans have yet to demonstrate that they truly grasp the significance of this weapon--or that they can effectively wield it. Why? Some Republicans are worried that the fight over Obamacare distracts from the issue of the economy. What these Republicans fail to realize is that healthcare and the economy are inextricably linked; Americans now realize that Obamacare was a detour on the road to economic recovery, so to remind them of one is to remind them of the other. And the two issues, compounded, are all the more powerful.”

Michael Gerson:  “One would think, given so much practice, that the Obama White House would have been better prepared for last week’s wretched jobs report. Instead, we witnessed the five stages of bad public relations. Delusion: It was a “step in the right direction.” Dismissiveness: Don’t “read too much into any one monthly report.” Grudging acceptance: “It’s still tough out there.” Cliche: “There are no quick fixes.” Self-pity: “I suspect that most people in Cincinnati would acknowledge that I’ve tried real hard.” I suspect that most people in Cincinnati and elsewhere would prefer an economic strategy that consists of something more than blame shifting and the systematic lowering of expectations.”

Top national Democratic operative Charles Halloran has been retained by a new George Soros-backed super-PAC to target Congressman Allen West for defeat this November. West is said to be at the top of Nancy Pelosi’s hit list…..left wing billionaire George Soros is among those who committed to a $5 million war chest to defeat West.
He’s one of the good guys. Donate to Rep Allen West here:

A parade entry portraying President Barack Obama and using the term “Obamanation” has made some angry, and others upset at the negative attention. It happened in the city’s annual Fourth of July parade. The float showed a person dressed as President Obama with one sign that read “Huntsville Welcomes Obama’s Farewell Tour?” On the back, another sign said, “Ask about our assault gun plan. Call Eric Holder.”
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ARTICLES
The United Nations is deliberating over a treaty that will place comprehensive limits on the international weapons trade. The language of the draft agreement is so expansive it wouldn’t take an Obama-appointed judge very long to extend the treaty to cover the domestic firearms market as well. If American jurists continue to be enamored by the popular trend to consider international precedence when making U.S. rulings, you can kiss the Second Amendment goodbye.

Michael's 10 Rules For Using Your Anger As An Asset To Winning:    Logic is persuasive, anger isn’t; Keep your eye on the prize at all times;  Less is more…..Fewer is better…..Don’t cannibalize the cause…..Don’t argue with liberals.

“Hank Williams Jr. to Obama: Pack your bags, take your teleprompter with you…”

Lloyd Marcus:  On July 4th, I co-hosted the Campaign To Defeat Obama Telethon. We raised funds to wage campaigns in four states which Obama won last election: Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan, and Nevada. Our goal is to win those states, delivering 50 electoral votes to Mitt Romney. Patriots across America responded well, making the telethon a success. After the broadcast, a few of our staff who were taking donations over the phones said they were shocked at the number of hate-filled, emotion-driven, idiotic calls from Obama supporters.

Since Mitt Romney wrapped up the Republican nomination for president a few weeks ago, the Democrats have been throwing everything but the kitchen sink at him. In tens of millions of dollars of advertising and nonstop campaigning by the president, Romney has taken an (unfair) beating over his years at Bain Capital, his wealth, his tax bill, his wife's hobbies and more. As one joke making its way around the Internet put it, “By now we are supposed to be more angry about how Mitt Romney spends his money than we are about how the president spends our money!”
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NOTEWORTHY WEBSITES
The Romney campaign has released a new television advertisement, "No Evidence," in which it flatly accuses President Barack Obama of having "lied" in his campaign's attacks on Mitt Romney for "outsourcing" jobs to foreign countries.

List of Obama’s lies.  Examples: "If you like your doctor or health care plan, you can keep it." "Since I've been president, federal spending has risen at the lowest pace in nearly 60 years….."

Top Ten Felons, Fugitives, and Shady Characters in Obama's Life

Chart:  The latest estimate of the cost of Obamacare:  $2.6 trillion dollars in its first decade.

Week’s best photos:
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Stella Paul:
Here are just a few of the things I miss since America entered the golden age of Hope and Change in January 2009:   Optimism. Going for minutes, hours, even days, without worrying about what weird insanity the government is dreaming up next.  Having money.  The Border Patrol.  Looking up at the moon and thinking, "America - we own space!"  Having a president whose background isn't more closely guarded than the formula for Coke.  Going on vacation without the TSA auditioning me for "Stella Does Dallas".    Jobs.    Not feeling like I have to whisper, if I say something that's not completely, 100% complimentary about our president.    Listening to the latest rant against Israel at the UN, without wondering if it's coming from the American Ambassador.  Feeling protected.  Having a president who doesn't want to fundamentally transform me.  Getting a doctor's appointment right away and not thinking, "That was nice while it lasted.   Having a president who would never, ever bow to the Saudi king, the Chinese premier, the Japanese prime minister and the mayor of Tampa.  Gazing up at the sky and not wondering if that's a bird or a drone.  Snacking on whatever I want, while the First Lady remains calm and indifferent. Having a president who thinks it would be unimaginably crazy to bring the 9/11 conspirators to New York for a civil trial.  PrivacySeparation of State and Media.  College graduates with a future in America, not China or Hong Kong.  Having a president who inspires us to feel that Americans are all in this game together.  A dollar that's worth 100 cents and isn't signed by a tax cheat.  America's Triple-A rating.  Having a president who doesn't seem needier for attention than Paris Hilton.  Strolling through the mall without worrying about racially-motivated flash mobs.  Looking at maps without trying to figure out where I can run.  Reading 1984 as an interesting work of fiction.  Dignity.  Pride
What do you miss?
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LATE NITE:
Leno:  The White House is now urging Americans not to "read too much" into last week’s jobs report. In fact, they said it would be best if you didn’t read it at all……At a democratic fundraiser in Seattle earlier this week, Vice President Biden said that Romney's economic policies were “George Bush on steroids" — as opposed to Obama's policies, which are “Jimmy Carter on Ambien.”
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WISE WORDS
"Would it not be better to simplify the system of taxation rather than to spread it over such a variety of subjects and pass through so many new hands."
                              -Thomas Jefferson

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