Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Just 27% of voters nationwide favor passage of a second economic stimulus package. The latest Rasmussen Reports nationwide telephone survey found that 55% are opposed and 19% are not sure.
Despite the public opposition, 74% say it’s likely that Congress will try to pass another stimulus plan before the year is out.
If Obama truly wants to provide solutions that would help America's economic situation and move Congress forward towards a greater spirit of non-partisan cooperation, he will support the No Cost Stimulus Act.
The No Cost Stimulus Act of 2009, recently introduced by Congressman Rob Bishop (R–UT) and Senator David Vitter (R–LA), would create an expected two million new jobs. Not "save or create," (designed to claim success for the original stimulus plan no matter what happens) but "create."
The No Cost Stimulus Act of 2009 would do this by expanding domestic energy supply and streamlining burdensome, unnecessary environmental review processes that have placed a stranglehold on access to reliable U.S. energy sources for decades.
It would do so by opening up offshore drilling, utilizing a small strip of ANWR for our energy needs and streamline regulations. As the Heritage Foundation notes, not only would easing the offshore drilling restrictions create jobs, it would also provide some much-needed short term energy security:
An estimated 19 billion barrels of oil—nearly 30 years of current imports from Saudi Arabia—as well as substantial natural gas reserves are estimated to lie beneath these restricted areas.
Bishop and Vitter compare this to the earlier stimulus attempt:
The last “stimulus” was 1,071 pages, cost $787 billion and is already at the receiving end of criticism for its potential effectiveness. Our legislation doesn’t cost a dime...
The bill is not perfect. It requires a significant portion of the revenue from ANWR to be used for new energy research, research that presumably would already be happening if it were likely to be profitable any time soon.
But the bill is designed to be agreeable to both parties and congressional democrats will find that aspect of it heartwarming. The extension of state boundaries to expand offshore drilling should be very attractive to democrats from coastal states. There ought to be more than enough here to make a real, bipartisan difference.
If President Obama meant what he said during the campaign, he will forcefully back this bill and urge Congress to get it done for the good of America.
"SUPPORT The Bishop-Vitter No Cost Stimulus Act of 2009"
YOUR Senator: http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm
YOUR Congressman: https://forms.house.gov/wyr/welcome.shtml
or: Speed Message them with your personal distribution list...
Iraqis are significantly more optimistic about the future, less concerned about security and increasingly supportive of democracy, according to a new poll gauging Iraqis’ attitudes six years after the U.S.-led invasion...
Iraqis fear U.S. pullout of volatile Mosul
Grenades lie unattended next to a west Mosul bazaar. Garbage bags throughout the city are searched daily for bombs. (Snip) President Barack Obama is ending all American combat operations after August 2010.
The Iraqi security forces are not sure they'll be ready.
''If you don't have the Americans, this is not going to be good,''
said an Iraqi army captain who gave his name only as Ahmed...
Asked Sunday on CNN if President Obama’s policies are making the U.S. less safe, former Vice President Dick Cheney said: “Yes.”
Looking slimmer and relaxed, Cheney told John King on “State of the Union” that Bush administration policies on detention and interrogation of suspected terrorists – some of which were immediately modified by Obama — “were absolutely essential” to preventing another 9/11-style attack...
White House: Cheney almost as popular as Limbaugh
The White House says former Vice President Dick Cheney is the second most popular member of the "Republican cabal," behind only talk-show host Rush Limbaugh. White House spokesman Robert Gibbs on Monday brushed off Cheney's criticism of President Barack Obama's new administration.
Cheney said Sunday that Obama's decisions are threatening the nation's safety. Obama reversed many of his predecessor's executive orders, including how the country treats suspected terrorists.
[So the White House's response to a deadly-serious policy question is to attack Cheney personally - evidently for not being 'popular'.]
Gunbattles and airstrikes by NATO and Afghan troops killed 53 militants in Afghanistan, including a wanted Taliban commander who tried to hide from soldiers under a woman's burqa, officials said Saturday.
Talking to Taliban is Pointless and an Act of Surrender
By Dr. Sami Alrabaa
Is it really possible to appease the Taliban? Hillary Clinton described Obama’s wish as “naïve and irresponsible”.
Thus far, the Taliban has violated all agreement reached with the NATO forces in Afghanistan. The latest was with the British. After promising not to attack a girls’ school in southern Afghanistan, the Taliban did assault the school and killed 12 students and three English language teachers.
In 2007, an inmate in Guantanamo with number 008 and called Abdulrasul was released. Back in southern Afghanistan, he rejoined the Talibans and is coordinating insurgence against the Afghan army, police, and Western forces.
The Taliban has no interest whatsoever in negotiating with the West and to live in peace. A peace agreement would mean an end to them and the flow of money...
A Christian minister who has had heated arguments with Muslims on his TV Gospel show has been brutally attacked by three men who ripped off his cross and warned: ‘If you go back to the studio, we’ll break your legs.’
Pakistan-born Mr Samuel, 48, who was educated by Christian missionaries and moved to Britain 15 years ago, said that over the past few weeks he has received phone-in calls from people identifying themselves as Muslims who challenged his views.
‘They were having an argument with me,’ he said. ‘They were very aggressive in saying they did not agree with me. I said those are your views and these are my views.’
He said that he, his wife Louisa, 48, and his son Naveed, 19, now fear for their safety, and police have given them panic alarms.
‘I am frightened and depressed,’ he said. ‘My show is not confrontational.’
WHY DO WE LET EXTREMISTS MAKE US A LAUGHING STOCK?
JUST how gullible do the Islamic extremists think we are?
On the evidence from this week alone, they must think we’re compete idiots.
And quite right they are too. The week began with the charming sight of 20 angry Muslim extremists shouting abuse at a homecoming parade of British troops in Luton, while waving placards calling the soldiers baby-killers, murderers, rapists and terrorists.
The only people arrested were two who shouted abuse back at the extremists.
Free speech is all very well but since when is it a right in a democratic society to call someone a torturer or a baby-killer? If that isn’t inciting hatred or violence, what is? [snip]
There will always be extremists. The issue is not what they do but how we as a nation deal with them. Pandering to Muslim extremists’ fanatical views and demands will never placate them.
They will never be happy until our nation, democracy and way of life are destroyed.
We are at war and we have two stark choices. It’s a choice between two ways of life and, in effect, two flags.
If we don’t, as a nation, stand up for every value of liberty, equality and decency that the Union flag represents, we may as well just give up and wave the white flag. Who’s laughing
An Islamic clerics’ group in South Africa is protesting the appearance of Koranic text in advertising and promotional merchandise for the soccer World Cup, which the country is hosting in 2010. At issue are soccer balls featuring images of flags of the world, including those of Saudi Arabia, Iran and Iraq. All three flags include words from the Koran.
(Snip) Western business interests invariably back down.
As money from the economic "stimulus" package begins flowing, some Republican governors are rejecting their states' share of $7 billion for enhanced unemployment benefits, saying the strings Congress attached would lead to higher business taxes. To get the money, states must expand unemployment benefits, such as covering part-time workers who lose their jobs.
"It seems really unreasonable that the federal government would require a change in state law as a condition of accepting these funds,"
Perry spokeswoman Katherine Cesinger said.
"The governor's main message is Texans who hire Texans drive our state's economic engine, and the last thing we need to do is burden them with higher taxes."
- Led by Republican Governors Association chairman Mark Sanford of South Carolina, a group of governors has rejected the unemployment money or other funding from the $787 billion stimulus package.
- Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, Haley Barbour of Mississippi, and Bob Riley of Alabama also have rejected the unemployment money.
image toon - sclm mny bbro - Stimulus comes with welfare strings attached
Obama White House slaps down Sanford on stimulus plan
WASHINGTON — White House Budget Director Peter Orszag on Monday rejected South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford's request to use up to $700 million of his state's economic stimulus funds to pay down state government debt.
[Heaven forbid anyone reduce their debt.]
When the European Union (EU) established the euro in 1999, it put in place strict limits on deficit spending and debt-to-gross domestic product (GDP) ratios. Those limits have not been universally honored within the currency bloc, but there's a reason they're there.
For decades, countries like Greece, Italy and Belgium had run up huge national debts trying to pay for social-welfare programs and keep their economies afloat at the same time. The chief result of these policies was a huge pile of IOUs:
- In Italy, the national debt stood at 107 percent of GDP in 1999.
- In Belgium and Greece it was 104 percent; Greece's fiscal house was so disordered that it was excluded from the first group of euro countries.
U.S. debt stood at 36 percent of GDP at the end of 2007 -- before the financial panic and stimulus started piling it on. The United States has run up $1 trillion in publicly held debt in the past six months alone -- that's 7 percent of GDP right there. [and our deficit now at 12%]
image toon - 1st mny sclm bbro - Bear market says 'let's try stimulus plane E'
Cap and trade will be a huge tax on the productive sectors of the economy.
The "cap" is a government-imposed limit on total emissions; companies then buy permits from the government to emit pollutants up to the amount of the cap, and can then trade these permits with each other. The process of issuing and pricing the permits will be an invitation to astonishing amounts of lobbying and favor-seeking. Cap and trade, in the words of MIT's Richard Lindzen, will be a bureaucrat's dream.
According to a recently released study by the George C. Marshall Institute:
- The cost of cap and trade to the overall economy -- depending on the size and scope of the legislation -- is up to a 3 percent drop in GDP in 2015 below what it would otherwise be.
- Americans would see their electricity prices jumping up to 15 percent, natural gas prices up to 50 percent and gasoline prices up to 145 percent.
Obama's plan is far more ambitious, and would be a far greater burden to American taxpayers; the administration projects that the tax would raise some $650 billion for federal coffers between 2012 and 2019.
The other reason for not hurrying up with a carbon tax may well be that the science underlying climate-change alarmism has taken a beating, says the Standard.
"It's been a catastrophic year for global warming activists ... all of a sudden, the observations are very inconvenient."
says Christopher Horner of the Competitive Enterprise Institute.
[I.e., the planet is cooling - but don't expect that little factoid to put any meaningful dent in the propaganda blitzkrieg that's coming - there's simply too much money on the line not to fight for it - and you should fight back: it's your money.]
CARBON TAX HITS ALL AMERICANS
The President's budget aims to raise $646 billion through a cap-and-trade tax on energy. Last year, Peter Orszag, who was then Director of the Congressional Budget Office and is now President Obama's Director for the Office of Management and Budget, testified before the House Ways and Means Committee on a similar proposal:
- Speaking about a cap-and-trade proposal to cut carbon emissions by 15 percent, he said it would cost the average household about $1,300 a year through higher energy costs; he also noted that working class families would be hardest hit.
- President Obama's current proposal aims to cut carbon emissions by more than three times that of last year's proposal -- 83 percent.
- John Feehery, writing in The Hill's Pundits Blog last week, noted that using Director Orszag's analysis, this would mean that the average family will pay close to $4,000 a year, or $333 a month.
And, it doesn't take into account the increased costs for everything from groceries to school supplies that a carbon tax will also impose on everyone...
image toon - engry - Oby plays 3-card cap & trade
A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association finds that hospital emergency rooms are, indeed, jammed. But it's not for the reason proponents of nationalized health care suggest.
In conducting the first study of its kind, researchers discovered that other scholarly papers on the uninsured simply assumed that they are the principal cause of emergency department (ED) overcrowding:
- Among the 127 identified articles, 53 had at least 1 assumption about uninsured ED patients, with a mean of 3 assumptions per article.
- Common assumptions include hypotheses that increasing numbers of uninsured patients present to the ED and that uninsured patients lack access to primary care.
- Available data support statements that ED care is more expensive than office-based care, and this is true for all users, insured and uninsured.
- It doesn't support assumptions that uninsured patients are a primary cause of ED overcrowding, present with less acute conditions than insured patients or seek ED care primarily for convenience.
President Obama has used events such as community discussion groups and last week's summit to foster the impression that he is soliciting opinions from all angles of the health care debate, but the reality is a lot different. Obscured by the Administration's theatrics is the fact that it has kept at bay those who advocate free-market solutions rather than government-run health care.
The guest list to the 'summit' was a telling sign. Despite having representatives from 169 different labor, industry, and policy organizations, the White House did not invite any organizations that advocate a consumer-based free-market approach to health care.
Progressive organizations such as the Center for American Progress, Health Care for America NOW!, and Campaign for America's Future were represented, but pro-market groups such as the Cato Institute, Consumers for Health Care Choices, the Galen Institute, or the Council for Affordable Health Insurance were not.
"They brought in the health care establishment to basically divvy up the pie, and consumers were left out of it entirely,"
lamented Greg Scandlen, president of Consumers for Health Care Choices.
"This is all predetermined and orchestrated to get the result they want."
Shadegg noted that other lawmakers who weren't invited included free marketers such as Rep. Paul Ryan, Rep. Tom Price, Sen. Richard Burr, Sen. Jim DeMint, and Obama's personal friend, Sen. Tom Coburn.
By contrast, Sen. Bernard Sanders and Rep. John Conyers were on hand -- both of them advocate a socialized, or single-payer, system.
The Obama administration signalled today that it was ready to repudiate the prohibition and "war on drugs" approach of previous presidents, and steer policy towards prevention and "harm reduction" strategies favoured by Europe.
David Johnson, an assistant secretary of state, said the new administration would embrace policies supporting federally funded needle exchanges.
Obama's public support is eroding
— A new poll by the independent Pew Research Center for the People & the Press has found that President Barack Obama's popular support is eroding, with his approval rating dropping:
"President Barack Obama's approval rating has slipped, as a growing number of Americans see him listening more to his party's liberals than to its moderates, and many voice opposition to some of his key economic proposals,"
Another polarizing move from Barack Obama. His permanent campaign is organizing a political organization loyal to him, bound by a pledge, outside the government and existing party apparatus. The historical precedents are ominous. Only this time around the Obama organization supplies YouTube videos on how to organize, and social networking software connects them.
Lona Manning points out that we were warned by Michelle Obama about this:
“Barack Obama will require you to work. He is going to demand that you shed your cynicism. That you put down your divisions. That you come out of your isolation, that you move out of your comfort zones. That you push yourselves to be better. And that you engage. Barack will never allow you to go back to your lives as usual, uninvolved, uninformed.”
Notice that by taking the pledge, Obama believers foreclose any discussion of any issues. Barack Obama by definition is always right, once they have pledged personal loyalty.
This is not the way a democracy is supposed to operate.
It was clear from the moment Gov. Sarah Palin appeared on the national scene as McCain’s vice-presidential choice that the Left was terrified of her charismatic appeal, effortless (and teleprompter-less) articulateness, formidable track record in political life, beautiful family, can-do American optimism, and also her success in actualizing what the largely-leftist feminist movement has advocated for since the 1960s, the notion that women could “have it all.” Palin’ genuinely self-made-woman status embodied the arch-goal of feminism – its paltry stats notwithstanding – but the tolerant feminists attacked her anyway.
It is columnist Wesley Pruden, however, who sums it up hilariously:
“Not only was she bereft of an Ivy League credential…she didn’t have a master’s degree in women’s studies from Harvard, nor had she ever taken a course in art appreciation at Stanford. She didn’t have a doctorate from Yale in the poetry of Nineteenth-Century Romania, nor had she written a learned paper for the Council on Foreign Relations on the politics of the Third Ten-Year Plan for Agricultural Reform in Uzbekistan. She was begging feminists with fancy credentials who had never accomplished anything to hate her, and they did.”
Yes, the Left’s snobbish fealty to the Ivy League was on full display during the 2008 campaign. But while the Ivy Leaguer ultimately won, the public cast a thunderous “no” vote against the so-called mainstream media’s blatantly biased – indeed, fawning – coverage, which can now be seen in the current demise of major liberal media.
Meanwhile, the lovely, modest, well-spoken, intelligent, humble, and well-brought-up Bristol Palin, and her mother, blithely ignore the rabid ravings of The Huffington Post, The Daily Kos, and the shrikes on “The View”.
The harder they try, the clearer it is that Gov. Palin’s popularity and clout is impervious to their efforts. And their dread is sure to increase as the truth of Ruth S. King’s words finally sink in:
“We have not seen the last of her."
[And that's what scares them most. Recommended > ]
Palin to Keynote Senate-House GOP Dinner
The chairs of the National Republican Senatorial Committee and National Republican Congressional Committee today announced that Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin will deliver the keynote address at the annual Senate-House Dinner. The dinner will be held on June 8 at the Washington Convention Center.
Lenin famously said of liberals in the West that they were "useful idiots."
A number of really smart (go ahead, ask them) people endorsed Obama only to find out that they were hoodwinked. He's not the guy they fell in love with. It's the morning after, and they've been forced to confront the fact that he's a fraud. A forgery.
In John LeCarre's "Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy" master spy George Smiley points out that "the more one has paid for a forgery, the more one defends it in the face of all the evidence to the contrary." And, these people have paid plenty for their forgery.
They fell in love with the idea of Obama and that blinded them to the reality of the man Obama. The hard leftist. The man with no management skills. The man with no knowledge of history. The man who insults our allies. Now, as the reality of what they have done is hitting them in the face, they are painfully coming to grips with their colossal gullibility.
Alec Guinness brilliantly portrayed the moment of clarity when he contemplated the bridge he had built for the Japanese over the River Kwai and said,
"What have I done?"