Saturday, April 26, 2014

op ed review 4/27

"According to a new poll, thirty-seven percent think Obama lies ‘most of the time.’" Another 24 percent say he lies “some of the time.”

Obama’s Staggering Record of Failure

Moving in with parents becomes more common for the middle-aged  The number of Californians 50 to 64 who live in their parents' homes has surged in recent years, reflecting the grim economic aftermath of the Great Recession.
For many Americans, 'temp' work becomes permanent way of life

Senators Denounce Obama for Threatening 'Entire Constitutional System' By 'Nullifying' Immigration Laws

One-and-a-half billion hours of burdensome paperwork has been added by the regulatory state since 2010, according to an analysis by American Action Forum, which pegs the additional economic cost at $43.8 billion. The report finds, "In 2010, the nation's total paperwork burden was 8.8 billion hours; today, it's more than 10.3 billion hours, an increase of 1.5 billion hours, despite the attempt at regulatory reform. For perspective, it would take 786,000 individuals working full-time to complete the new paperwork added since 2010."
In the budget proposal he presented to Congress last month, President Barack Obama called for what would be the highest level of sustained taxation ever imposed on the American people, according to the analysis published last week by the Congressional Budget Office.

The Supreme Court has upheld a ban on using race in admissions to Michigan´s public university.

“Hillary Clinton´s legacy as secretary of state is thin, judging from a press conference Tuesday in which the State Department´s chief spokeswoman couldn´t articulate any of the future presidential candidate´s achievements on the job. She´s not alone, with experts of all political stripes finding it difficult to bolster Clinton´s resume as America´s top diplomat. The former secretary of state herself had trouble articulating any lasting achievements from her tenure, during an April 3 appearance at the Women of the World Summit in New York City.”
A group of former top military officers, CIA insiders and think-tankers, conducted a seven-month review of the deadly 2012 terrorist attack has determined that it could have been prevented – if the U.S. hadn´t been helping to arm al-Qaeda militias throughout Libya a year earlier.
In internal government documents with potential repercussions for the 2016 presidential election, top officials at the U.S. Agency for International Development repeatedly cited former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton for setting into motion a policy to waive restrictions on who could receive U.S. aid in Afghanistan, resulting in millions of dollars in U.S. funds going directly into the coffers of Afghan ministries known to be rife with corruption.

Oregon is set to become the first state to drop its ObamaCare exchange and transition into the system managed by the federal government. The decision follows months of severe technical issues that have made Oregon´s marketplace one of the worst in the country.

Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens supports gutting the Second Amendment in order to remove any limit on government infringements on the right of self-defense.

House Speaker John Boehner theatrically mocked his fellow Republican Congressmen for being afraid to reform immigration policy when he spoke Thursday before the Middletown Rotary Club in his home district.

Why the UN is a joke:  “Iran Wins Seat On UN Women´s Rights Commission”

We have work to do:  “53% Think Neither Political Party Represents the American People”

The mellow, "peace now," countercultural, environmentally conscious “420” celebration deposited 10,000 pounds of garbage on what is known as Hippie Hill in Golden Gate Park, leaving volunteers and park workers to clean up the mess. The pot smokers´ untidiness will cost the city more than $10,000 in cleanup costs. “The immense load of empty bags of chips, candy wrappers, and snack containers left behind was evidence that it was indeed the remnants of weed smokers.”

IRS revokes conservative group’s tax-exempt status over anti-Clinton statements

An obscure federal agency in charge of preventing strikes has instead spent money promoting union membership and propping up public sector unions.

Socialized medicine in the UK:  “At least 1,000 hospital patients are dying needlessly each month from dehydration and poor care by doctors and nurses, according to an NHS study.”

Joe Biden thanks Ukraine for making him ´feel relevant again´


Why Does Nation Tolerate A Habitual Liar As President?
Investor’s Business Daily  4/23/14

Public Trust: Sixty-one percent polled say President Obama lies "some of the time" or "most of the time" on matters of national importance. Americans have to ask: Why do we let him get away with it? It's no surprise that a Fox News poll of 1,012 registered voters last week found immense distrust of a president whose main domestic initiative was based on a lie. The shock is that the same poll found his disapproval level down to its lowest since last fall.

Asked, "How often do you think Barack Obama lies to the country on important matters?" 37% replied "most of the time" while 24% answered "some of the time." Twenty percent said, "Only now and then." The least popular response was "never," with only 15% considering our president completely honest when he's speaking to the nation about big things.

Not only does this mean that 61% believe Obama to be a habitual liar, with most of those believing that most of what comes from his mouth is a lie; it also means that 81% think he has lied as president about important matters at least occasionally. How could they not? For years, millions trusted him when he swore that "If you like the plan you have, you can keep it. If you like the doctor you have, you can keep your doctor, too. The only change you'll see are falling costs as our reforms take hold."

None of that has been true, of course. Yet this same president only last May could be found engaging in a near-self parody. "Don't let people confuse you," he told a group of ObamaCare supporters in the East Room. "Don't let them run the okey-doke on you. Don't be bamboozled."

Even Richard Nixon was not this brazen. The nation was disgusted with Nixon's offenses, and public pressure forced him from office. But this latest Fox poll found that Obama's approval fell to 51% from the 53%-55% range of Fox's seven previous polls. You have to go back to early October 2013, when it was 49%, to find approval of Obama lower.

German physician Anton Delbrueck, about 120 years ago, decided that a new psychological classification — "pseudologia fantastica" — was required after noting that some of his patients were incessant liars. Whether that explains the last two Democrat presidents, today we might need a joint psychological/sociological study of the mass tendency of the country to accept systematic lying from the highest level of government.

The researchers can start with the country's establishment media. Last week, White House press secretary Jay Carney, interviewed at George Washington University, remarked that during 2012 "probably the toughest interview" Obama was subjected to was the one conducted by funnyman Jon Stewart. "Probably the most substantive, challenging interview Barack Obama had in the election year was with the anchor of 'The Daily Show,' " Carney said.

Not "serious" TV interviewers such as Steve Kroft of "60 Minutes," whose questions of Obama in the heat of the 2012 campaign included: "Where do you go to kind of sort things out on your own? And when do you find time to just be alone with your own thoughts?"

Not "Good Morning America's" Robin Roberts, who in May of that election year, while using her interview to provide a nationally televised forum for Obama's big switch on same-sex marriage — another broken promise — threw this hardball: "Mother's Day. Sasha and Malia. Do you have plans for Mrs. Obama?"

It is disgraceful enough for the most prominent journalists to refuse to ask real questions of the most powerful politician in the country because they share his left-wing ideology. But when a large majority of the public recognizes a president as a habitual liar, it is outrageous and entirely un-American for the most powerful within the nation's press to let him get away with his lies, and betray what they claim to stand for.

“It turns out that when the Left inveighed against “imposing morality,” what it meant is that it didn’t yet have the power to impose its own. Now that it increasingly does, the old live-and-let-live pose is abandoned, and the purge is on. The Mozilla episode is another indication that the regime of political correctness that characterizes academia is infecting the American mainstream. It will bring with it the same fear that haunts campus life. Fear of saying the wrong thing and crossing the wrong people. Fear of retaliation for believing the wrong things. For decades, we’ve heard from the Left about the need to fight authority and to resist conformity. Now it is clearer than ever that it wants to wield the former to impose the latter. Brendan Eich is probably not a culmination so much as a sign of things to come.”
                              -Rich Lowry

“The Little Green Book of Eco-Fascism: The Left’s Plan to Frighten Your Kids, Drive Up Energy Costs, and Hike Your Taxes!” by James Delingpole.  One reviewer writes: “Delingpole nails it yet again! He shows us that communists have not gone away. They’ve merely changed tactics by promoting socialism under the guise of Earth worship. The author brilliantly dismantles the eco-religion of the Left and shows us that their true goal is to part us from our money and freedom. Told in a very entertaining and witty manner, it is a must-read for anyone who wants the truth behind the radical environmentalist movement.

The decision to yet again delay the final permit for the popular Keystone XL pipeline was made not in the White House or at the StateDepartment, but in a posh private residence in the Sea Cliff neighborhood in northwestern San Francisco. It was there on February 19 that former vice president Al Gore and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid made the pilgrimage to Tom Steyer´s home to kiss the ring of the hedge fund-billionaire turned super-donor, in exchange for $400,000 that night and a promise of $100 million more to come. Steyer´s sole demand? Stop the pipeline.

Steyer has pledged $100 million in the 2014 election cycle to help Democratic candidates who oppose the Keystone pipeline and who favor “green” energy over fossil fuels. Steyer claims to be a man of principle who has no financial interest in the causes he supports, but acts only for the public good. That is a ridiculous claim: Steyer is the ultimate rent-seeker who depends on government connections to produce subsidies and mandates that make his “green” energy investments profitable.

Support for building the Keystone XL pipeline is now at its highest level ever. The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 61% of Likely U.S. Voters now at least somewhat favor building the major oil pipeline from Canada to Texas, while just 27% are opposed.

Even the Washington Post gets it:  “The administration’s latest decision(on the Keystone pipeline) is not responsible; it is embarrassing. The United States continues to insult its Canadian allies by holding up what should have been a routine permitting decision amid a funhouse-mirror environmental debate that got way out of hand. The president should end this national psychodrama now, bow to reason, approve the pipeline and go do something more productive for the climate.”

The World's Resources Aren't Running Out:  Ecologists worry that the world's resources come in fixed amounts that will run out, but we have broken through such limits again and again.

Do as I say, not as I do:  “Obama will burn more than 35,000 gallons of fuel on Earth Day, emitting 375 TONS of carbon dioxide.”

Thomas Piketty may not be a household name in this country (yet), but the French economist who is updating Karl Marx has quite a following at the White House and among thought leaders of the Democratic Party.  In his latest book, Piketty warns that modern-day capitalism leads to unsustainable levels of inequality.  “The Democratic Party, especially the Obama administration, has been in contact with us and using our findings for a long time,” Piketty told AFP.

“What are the chances that Bernardine Dohrn, the wife of Bill Ayres, and a principal signatory on the Weather Underground´s "Declaration of a State of War" in May 1970 could be appointed as a judge in a Federal Court?”

Washington Post hires ultra-liberal former union bully and nobody bats an eye

How did Harry Reid become so wealthy?

Suppose a scientific conference on cancer prevention never addressed smoking, on the grounds that in a free society you can't change private behavior, and anyway, maybe the statistical relationships between smoking and cancer are really caused by some other third variable. Wouldn't some suspect that the scientists who raised these claims were driven by something—ideology, tobacco money—other than science?  Yet in the current discussions about increased inequality, few researchers, fewer reporters, and no one in the executive branch of government directly addresses what seems to be the strongest statistical correlate of inequality in the United States: the rise of single-parent families during the past half century.

Funny story:  PRUDEN: Putting the ‘pee’ in Portland.  No reservoir of good will in Oregon water supply.
Boehner:  As he moves from lobbyists to the golf course, from press conferences to the tanning bed, he remains oblivious to all that is around him. He has power, incredible power, and yet to this day he has no understanding of the election that made it so. Moreover, all around him are astonishing opportunities for him to be an historic figure -- one who could and should be the man who did more than any other single person in turning back the red tide of Obama. It’s all there for Speaker of the House, and yet John Boehner manages to miss it all -- as he guarantees his spot as the most spectacular failure in the history of Speakers of the House. So seriously, just how dense is this guy?”

So now we know why the Democrats are adopting economic inequality as their central issue: because their constituents, the people who live under policies crafted by the left, are the ones who experience the highest degree of income inequality in their own lives. That’s the upshot of a recent study of income inequality organized by congressional district: “Across the country, inequality is lower in Republican districts than in Democratic ones” and is “highest in the New York City district of Representative Jerry Nadler, a liberal Democrat.” Who has the congressional district with the least income inequality? That would be Tea Party favorite Michele Bachmann, who represents suburban Minneapolis.

It’s an article of the faith of the Democrats that voter fraud is nothing to worry about because it never happens. Kim Strach, the North Carolina director of elections, has living proof — and some dead proof — otherwise. She has identified 35,750 persons who voted in North Carolina sharing a name, birth date and Social Security number with someone who voted in another state in 2012. Another 81 North Carolinians voted after they died. Ghosts have no constitutional rights, not yet, but Barack Obama and the Democrats think rigor mortis need not keep voters from practicing good citizenship.

These Maps Destroy All Objections To The Keystone Pipeline

In what can only be called a gracious historical act, a newsreel archive company called British Pathé has uploaded 85,000 historic films on YouTube—in high resolution, no less. The collection spans from 1896 to 1976 and there’s obviously a lot of great stuff to comb through that ranges from politics to art to culture to sports. One video that has caught The Daily Caller’s eye is the one below, in which American birth control activist Margaret Sanger sternly demands that the women of the world have “no more babies.”

“Moderation in temper is always a virtue; but moderation in principle, is a species of vice.”
                        –Thomas Paine

Saturday, April 19, 2014

op ed review 4/20

A new poll shows former secretary of state Hillary Clinton’s numbers hitting their lowest point in six years. Meanwhile, it finds that the Republican Party is experiencing something of a renaissance. The poll shows Clinton’s favorable rating dropping to 49 percent, compared to 45 percent unfavorable.

Welcome to Obama’s America:  “86M Full-Time Private-Sector Workers Sustain 148M collecting government benefits.”

Bizarre picture of Nancy Pelosi continuing her amnesty campaign, tweeting an image of herself washing the feet of illegal immigrants.

“China on course to become 'world's most Christian nation' within 15 years…The number of Christians in Communist China is growing so steadily that it by 2030 it could have more churchgoers than America.”

Speaker John Boehner and other senior House Republicans are telling donors and industry groups that they aim to pass immigration legislation this year, despite the reluctance of many Republicans to tackle the divisive issue before the November elections.
Speaker Boehner´s primary challenger has a provocative new video in which an announcer asks if Boehner suffers from "electile dysfunction"? "

Education Secretary Arne Duncan thinks, "it's frankly inspiring" that children of illegal immigrants cross the border on a daily basis to attend American schools.

Since taking office in 2009, President Obama has formally proposed a total of 442 tax increases. The 442 total proposed tax increases does not include the 20 tax increases Obama signed into law as part of Obamacare.
Obama Selects First Openly Gay Episcopal Bishop to Lead Easter Prayer

Remember when Lois Lerner admitted the IRS had targeted conservative groups but tried to pass it off as the work of “rogue agents”? Today we know they weren’t rogue, and they weren’t confined to IRS workers in Cincinnati. With every e-mail that becomes public, we learn just how false the earlier IRS explanations have been.
On Tax Day, the Republican National Committee announced it is suing the IRS for stonewalling Freedom of Information Act request for documents about the tax agency’s politicized scrutiny of conservative and Tea Party groups.

The federal government backed down and ended their siege against Nevada cattle rancher Cliven Bundy less than 24 hours after an Infowars exposé connecting the land grab to Harry Reid and a Chinese-backed solar farm went viral, becoming the biggest news story on the Internet.
Senator Reid has escalated the war of words over the Bundy dispute, sensationally labeling the Nevada cattle rancher’s supporters “domestic terrorists” during an event in Las Vegas.
Western lawmakers gather in Utah to talk about taking land back from the federal government.

A small study of casual marijuana smokers has turned up evidence of changes in the brain, a possible sign of trouble ahead, researchers say. "What we think we are seeing here is a very early indication of what becomes a problem later on with prolonged use," things like lack of focus and impaired judgment.”
“Pot vending machine to debut..”

Report: FBI Visiting Gun Shops to Investigate “People Talking About Big Government”    “If you see some Middle Eastern guy come in, you don’t have to be so worried about that……What we’re really looking for are people talking about being sovereign such as sovereign citizens or people talking about big government,” the agent reportedly stated.

“Less than a minute into his speech at the Boston marathon bombing memorial on Tuesday, Vice President Joe Biden went tragically off script and told the crowd of Boston bombing survivors that "it was worth it."

A new Citizens United Political Victory Fund poll shows that Republican Arizona voters have had it with Sen. John McCain, even though the senator has signaled his intentions to run for a sixth term in 2016. According to the poll, 64.2 percent of likely GOP primary voters said that they are ready for someone new to take the job and only 29.3 percent signaled a willingness to re-elect McCain.

IRS data for 2009 show that the top 1% of US taxpayers paid 37% of all federal income taxes collected, the top 50% paid almost all taxes collected (98%) and the bottom half paid only 2%. And these are the stats on people who at least pay income taxes; in 2012 Republican presidential candidate's Mitt Romney was actually criticized for even mentioning that 47% don't pay income taxes.

President Obama has attended 373 fundraisers during his five-plus years in office. That´s  about one every five days or so. Assuming he speaks for close to 15 minutes at each event, that´s well over 5,000 presidential minutes consumed by the dirty business of asking people for money. And that doesn´t include the prep, the glad-handing and hobnobbing, the photos, the private asides, the travel.

The express train hurtling to return racial preference admissions to California has just been derailed by an outburst of opposition from Asian Americans.
A group of Asian Americans is starting a grassroots effort to garner support for the Republican Party and its candidates, saying the GOP most closely aligns with their core values including family, education and entrepreneurship.

Cal Thomas: 
Focus on What What Works  4/8

The Fiscal Times reported last week that the State Department has missing files or incomplete files for more than $6 billion in State Department contracts. Steve Linick, State’s inspector general, issued a “management alert” warning that “significant financial risk and a lack of internal control at the department has led to billions of unaccounted for dollars over the last six years.” “For instance,” writes the FT, “a recent investigation of the closeout process for contracts supporting the mission in Iraq, showed that auditors couldn’t find 33 of the 115 contract files totaling about $2.1 billion. Of the remaining 82 files, auditors said 48 contained insufficient documents required by federal law.” State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf says the $6 billion isn’t missing, but that State is merely experiencing “bureaucratic issues,” which it’s addressing.

The lack of internal control is an apt description for what is wrong with the federal government, which seems incapable of controlling its spending.

Oh, how far we’ve come from the days of our grandparents, who lived through the Great Depression and World War II. Then, slogans like “waste not, want not” and “use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without” were necessities not just for winning a war, but surviving as a family.  Then, children were told to clean their plates because somewhere in the world people were starving. The Puritan ethic reminded people to always live within their means. Envy, greed and entitlement were regarded as “sins.”

I recall an address given by the late Catholic Bishop Fulton J. Sheen. He asked, “How do you define a football field?” His answer? “By its boundaries.” Sheen’s point was that when boundaries are crossed, trouble ensues.  The Founders gave us a Constitution with boundaries that restrict the power and reach of government. We have exceeded those boundaries, which is why government no longer works and we have massive debt.

The duplicative nature of many government programs and the “eternal life” most seem to have without ever having to prove their effectiveness, has contributed not only to the debt, but to the deepening cynicism felt by many Americans. According to a recent Reason-Rupe poll, Americans were asked to guess between zero to 100 what percentage of their elected officials used their political power to help their friends and hurt their enemies. On average, the poll found that Americans think 70 percent of their elected officials do so. In addition, those surveyed were asked to guess between zero to 100 what percentage of their elected officials are corrupted by special interests. They responded that 75 percent were probably corrupted by special interests…

To return government to its constitutional boundaries we need a new Grace Commission. Established in 1982 by President Reagan and headed by businessman J. Peter Grace, the Grace Commission conducted an audit of the federal government with the goal of eliminating waste, fraud and abuse. Its voluminous report was presented to Congress, which promptly shelved it. In Washington, if you haven’t noticed, money is power.

What’s needed now is a new version of the Grace Commission that resembles the Base Realignment and Closure Commission (BRAC), tasked with closing outmoded military bases. Congress gave BRAC the power to close the bases and BRAC gave Congress cover so if anyone complained about lost jobs or negative economic effects in their districts, the commission could be blamed.

Most businesses conduct audits or internal reviews to make sure they are operating efficiently. Not the federal government.  Republicans, who have occasionally proposed fiscal restraint, should promise an audit of the federal government if voters return them to a Senate majority in November and the White House in 2016. It will be difficult, but it must be done or the future of increasing debt and lack of personal responsibility will cripple the country, perhaps beyond healing.

Focusing on “what works,” and getting rid of what doesn’t is the way back from the fiscal brink. We had better start soon, though, because spending like there’s no tomorrow will ensure there isn’t one for the country bequeathed to us.


Neurosurgeon Ben Carson says the White House wanted him to apologize for “offending” President Obama after he famously delivered a conservative message at the National Prayer Breakfast last year. Carson, the former director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital, recalls the events surrounding his 2013 speech in his new book, “One Nation: What We Can All Do To Save America’s Future.”

Charles Murray:  “I just published a book called “The Curmudgeon’s Guide to Getting Ahead” for people making the transition from college to the real world. It consists of tips that I originally wrote for the interns and research assistants at the American Enterprise Institute, where I work. But let’s face it: Some of my advice doesn’t seem to apply if you’re in the political part of Washington.”

Even by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change´s own lamentable standards, its new report makes no sense whatsoever. Before the report´s formal release, US officials--who had seen an earlier draft--wrote to the United Nations demanding it be amended. "The discussion of the economic costs of mitigation is too narrow and does not incorporate co-benefits of action." Loosely translated this means: "If we admit how much we´re spending to such little purpose, the taxpaying public is going to kill us."

Pressing questions for the British House of Lords: Does baked-beans consumption go into our
climate change calculations?

A new report by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service finds that solar facilities in California are acting like “mega traps” that kill and injure birds. As a result, “entire food chains” are being disrupted.

The Washington Free Beacon has compiled this video  of Harry Reid chanting “Koch brothers” 134 times on the Senate floor.

Two major environmental groups will announce Monday that they are creating an alliance between their two political action arms, in an effort to expand their influence on national policymakers. The League of Conservation Voters and the Natural Resources Defense Council Action Fund are starting LeadingGreen, a collaboration that will steer donations to federal candidates and enlist the help of major donors in lobbying elected officials.

“It’s time for Republicans to give women a fair shot at equal pay, Patty Murray said.  So we did a little research.  I was curious - how do the female Patty Murray staffers do compared to the male Patty Murray staffers? It turns out, one of the worst offenders in the entire United States Senate on gender pay is Senator Patty Murray from Washington. According to a 2012 report, female members of Patty Murray’s staff on average made about $21,000 less per year than her male staffers.  That is a difference of 34 percent.  In other words, the female Patty Murray staffers make 66 cents for every dollar that the male Patty Murray staffers make.”

It’s hardly been a secret that in recent years the moderate center of the Democrat party has been driven away and what remains is a conglomeration of disparate blocs which, to date, the party has been able to treat as if there were no conflicting interests between them. As the midterm elections approach and the administration’s incompetence, along with the distaste for the president’s signature ObamaCare legislation, drive the party’s chances down further, the make-believe coalition of opposites may well crumble if the opposition doesn’t blow it.

Republicans are famously divided on immigration reform, but Democrats pretty much unanimously support it. There´s a reason for that. In stark, partisan political terms, continuing the high level of immigration of recent decades, and certainly increasing immigration as envisioned by many reformers, will result in more Democrats winning more elections in coming years

Dennis Prager:  In the United States of America today, the belief that marriage should remain defined as the union of a man and woman is portrayed as so vile by the left that anyone who holds it is unfit for employment. That is why you should uninstall Firefox.

Meet Sylvia Burwell, the Titanic’s New Captain

“Can You Spot The Racist, Homophobic Anti-Semites In This Special 10 Item Quiz?”

“The law, unfortunately, has always been retained on the side of power; laws have uniformly been enacted for the protection and perpetuation of power."
                -Thomas Cooper

Frank J. Fleming: “The reason I like a mugger over a tax collector is that a mugger never acts like you’re supposed to thank him.”