Tuesday, June 30, 2009
As American troops pullback in Iraq, Islamic killers move in.Six days before U.S. combat forces are due to withdraw from major Iraqi cities, a bomb hidden under vegetables on a three-wheeled motorcycle killed at least 60 people and wounded 135 more in Sadr City, a densely populated Shiite Muslim slum in the Iraqi capital.
And this.At least 25 civilians were killed and more than 75 were wounded when a bomb in a parked car detonated early Wednesday inside a marketplace in a small southern Iraqi town, medical officials said.
Another day, another day of internecine Muslim slaughter in Iraq. To put things in perspective, if a proportionate mass killing had occurred in the US, it would equal 2000 American dead. Pundits and academics and scribblers of every kind will write millions of words trying to explain these killings. Some will blame Iran. Some will blame Al-Qaeda. Some will blame Bush. Yet such things happen regularly in Iraq and in almost every nation where Mohammed hangs his ragged turban. Muslim killing Muslim began when Islam began. It will end when the last two Muslims strangle each other with their own intestines.
Truth be told, Islam is not particular about whom it kills. The killing fields of Islam have seen the murder of Muslims, Christians, Jews, Hindus, pagans, atheists, Zoroastrians—really, anyone will do, in a pinch even Rosicrucians. The killing is the thing—the only thing.
And the result of all of this mayhem is…well, nothing. No Muslim life has been bettered, no Muslim nation’s GDP has increased, no deeper understanding of Islam has emerged, no new invention except the suicide bomb has come out of these oceans of blood. Wherever one goes in what B. Hussein Obama calls “the world of Islam” one finds poverty, tyranny, Jew hatred, misogyny and terror. One does not find anything remotely resembling the Declaration of Independence, The Wealth of Nations, Summa Theologica or The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.
The obvious conclusion to those with eyes is that the majority of Muslim lands are filled with soap-deprived and illiterate barbarians.
Read the rest.
They seem to be shooting protesters indiscriminately from the rooftops.
Click on the link for more video and reportage.
The heavy blue line was Team Obama's projection of unemployment WITH their plan in place.
The light blue line was their "scare" projection of what would happen if their plan was not put in place.
The plan is in place.
The red dots are the real unemployment numbers.
Question: did the plan, which was put in place promising to make unemployment better:
(2) have no effect,
(3) or actually make it worse?
One thing is clear: Team Obama's projections are not to be relied upon ... for anything.
Neither are his promises.
Higher Taxes - Gibbs: "We're going to let the process work its way through."
What's the Obama Press Corps supposed to do now?
From Hot Air:
It’s a laugh riot, isn’t it? Actually, they might be laughing more at Gibbs’s feeble way of ducking the question than The One’s looming broken promise, but in Gibbs’s defense, what’s he supposed to say? Obama pounded McCain for wanting to pay for health care by taxing benefits, rode into D.C. promising Change, and now he’s going to eat a crap sandwich by reversing himself because it turns out personal charisma doesn’t work on hard economic numbers. So Axelrod and company have to go out and face the firing squad and “explain” via stuttering half-answers why Barry O lied about this last year.
From the comments:
They are not laughing at him they are laughing with him.
We are going to let this process work it’s way through..
We are going to let this process work it’s way through…
Just what the he!! is Pravda west laughing at. Obama lied his a$$ off to get into office and these morons laughing protected and spun everything they could to get him there.
The people getting screwed in their little ideological fairyland that they have created are us and I can tell you I don’t see a dam# thing funny.
I really,really,really hate these a$$holes.
Most political and media discussions of medical care have an air of unreality reminiscent of Alice in Wonderland. There is an abundance of catch-phrases but remarkably few coherent arguments.
Let's start at square one. Why is there alarm about American medical care? The most usual reason given is because its cost is high and rising.
That is certainly true. We were not spending nearly as much on high-tech medical procedures in the past because there were not nearly as many of them, and we were not spending anything at all on some of the new pharmaceutical drugs because they didn't exist.
This general pattern is not peculiar to medical care. Cars didn't cost nearly as much in the past, when they didn't have air-conditioning, power steering and high-tech safety features. Homes were cheaper when they were smaller, had fewer bathrooms and lacked such conveniences as built-in microwave ovens.
We would like to have all these things without the rising costs that come with them. But only with medical care is such wishful thinking taken seriously, with government regarded as a sort of fairy godmother who will give us the benefits without the costs.
A cynic is said to be someone who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. If so, then it is political cynicism to point to other countries that spend less on medical care, including some countries where there is "universal health care" provided "free" by their governments.
Just as medical care, houses and cars were all cheaper when they lacked things that they have today, so medical care in other countries is cheaper when they lack many things that are more readily available in the United States.
There are more than four times as many Magnetic Resonance Imaging units (MRIs) per capita in the United States as in Britain or Canada, where there are government-run medical systems. There are more than twice as many CT scanners per capita in the United States as in Canada and more than four times as many per capita as in Britain.
Is it surprising that such things cost money?
The cost of developing a new pharmaceutical drug is now about a billion dollars. Neither political rhetoric nor government bureaucracies will make those costs go away.
We can, of course, refuse to pay these and other medical costs, just as we can refuse to buy air-conditioned homes with built-in microwave ovens. But that just means we pay attention only to prices and not to the value of what we get for those prices.
We can even refuse to pay for so many doctors. But that just means that we will have to wait longer to see a doctor-- as people do in countries with government-run medical systems.
In Canada, 27 percent of the people who have surgery wait four months or more. In Britain, 38 percent wait that long. But only 5 percent of Americans wait that long for surgery.
Surgery may well cost less in countries with government-run medical systems-- if you count only the money cost, and not the time the patients have to endure the ailments that require surgery, or the fact that some conditions become worse, or even fatal, while waiting.
A recent report from the Fraser Institute in Canada shows that patients there wait an average of ten weeks to get an MRI, just to find out what is wrong with them. A lot of bad things can happen in 10 weeks, ranging from suffering to death.
Politicians may talk about "bringing down the cost of medical care," but they seldom even attempt to bring down the costs. What they bring down is the price-- which is to say, they refuse to pay the costs.
Anybody can refuse to pay any cost. But don't be surprised if you get less when you pay less. None of this is rocket science. But it does require us to stop and think before jumping on a bandwagon.
The great haste with which the latest government expansion into medical care is being rushed through Congress suggests that the politicians don't want us to stop and think. That makes sense, from their point of view, but not from ours.
Monday, June 29, 2009
A blatantly fraudulent election may have been the spark that ignited Iran’s current rebellion, but don’t be misled: Iran has never had free and fair elections.
I was in Iran 30 years ago for the first elections held under the gaze of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the dour, militant leader of Iran’s Islamist revolution. I was a young and inexperienced foreign correspondent unconvinced by older and more experienced foreign correspondents that Khomeini and his followers intended to transform Iran into a freer and more just society, rather than one that would be brutally oppressive at home and threatening abroad.....
The truth is Khomeini and his followers were never freedom fighters. “Don't listen to those who speak of democracy,” Khomeini said in March 1979. “They all are against Islam. . . . We will break all the poison pens of those who speak of nationalism, democracy, and such things.”
Khomeinists believe in the strictest possible interpretation of the Koranic injunction to “command right and forbid wrong.” It was with that in mind that, in 1979, the drinking of alcohol was forbidden, not just for Muslims, but also for infidels in Iran. I still have the memo issued by the management of the hotel at which I and most other foreign journalists lodged, warning of unpleasant consequences should we ignore the prohibition.
More to the point: If “commanding right and forbidding wrong” is your religious and political obligation, what do you do when Iranians go to the polls and vote wrongly, instead of rightly? Apparently, you hand the election to the “right” candidate, in the current instance to Ahmadinejad, including in his opponent’s home region, and without bothering to count millions of paper ballots....
Over the years that followed, Khomeini’s revolution failed, and not only by liberal democratic standards — more people executed, imprisoned, and driven into exile than under the shah, egregious violations of human rights, sponsorship of terrorism, Holocaust denial, and genocidal threats. It failed also by Khomeini’s standards.
Just as the Russian Revolution and the social engineering of Lenin and Stalin did not create a “New Soviet Man,” so Iran’s Islamic Revolution has not succeeded in creating a new Islamist Man — one who wants nothing more than to obey Iran’s religious ruling class and fight for the imposition of Islamic law around the world.
This is what Iran’s demonstrators are demonstrating. They are waging a revolution for hope that has been denied and change that, it seemed, would never come. President Obama’s moral support should be loud and clear.
Congratulations, it's a ...cross-border incident!
Somewhere in America Alone, I cite an example of the logical reductio of socialized health care: "the ten-month wait for the maternity ward". I've been adding to the file ever since. Here's the latest entry, from Hamilton, Ontario:
Hamilton's neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) was full when Ava Isabella Stinson was born 14 weeks premature at St. Joseph's Hospital Thursday at 12:24 p.m.
A provincewide search for an open NICU bed came up empty, leaving no choice but to send the two-pound, four-ounce preemie to Buffalo that evening.
Well, it would be unreasonable to expect Hamilton, a city of half-a-million people just down the road from Canada's largest city (Greater Toronto Area, five-and-a-half million) in the most densely populated part of Canada's most populous province (Ontario, 13 million people) to be able to offer the same level of neonatal care as Buffalo, a post-industrial ruin in steep population decline for half-a-century.
But wait! The fun and games are only just beginning. When a decrepit and incompetent Canadian health bureaucracy meets a boneheaded and inhuman American border "security" bureaucracy, you'll be getting a birth experience you'll treasure forever:
Her parents, Natalie Paquette and Richard Stinson, couldn't follow their baby because as of June 1, a passport is required to cross the border into the United States. They're having to approve medical procedures over the phone and are terrified something will happen to their baby before they get there.
Once Buffalo enjoys the benefits of Hamilton-level health care, I wonder where Ontario will be shipping the preemies to. Costa Rica?
The NY Post says the autopsy found Michael Jackson had nothing in stomach but half-dissolved pills. His emaciated body was a network of needlemarks and scars weighing barely 112 pounds on a 5′ 10″ frame; and the whole skeletal assembly was surmounted by a head bald but for a scant covering of peach fuzz, a fact artfully disguised by wigs worn on all his public appearances. The Post writes:
“He was skin and bone, his hair had fallen out, and he had been eating nothing but pills when he died,” a source close to the singer’s entourage told the paper. “Injection marks all over his body and the disfigurement caused by years of plastic surgery show he’d been in terminal decline for some years.”
There were four fresh injections around his heart, presumably from attempts to pump adrenaline into it to jumpstart it, the paper said. Three of them had penetrated and damaged his heart wall, while a fourth struck his ribs, the paper reported. He also sustained several broken ribs while authorities administered CPR during his final moments Thursday.
If any man in Guantanamo Bay prison had been found in this condition there would be cries for a war crimes prosecution. But since Jackson succumbed to that most socially acceptable and lucrative of ends, death by celebrity, the real question is whether anyone — anyone at all, bar some fall guy — will be found guilty of anything.
Why did no one know?
This guy lived and died in the middle of a big city; he was among the most watched human beings on the planet and yet everything that was publicly known about him was either a lie or so shaded a truth as to be virtually indistinguishable. How any investor could be induced to bet hundreds of millions of dollars on a series of Farewell Concerts featuring a man in the condition of a Holocaust concentration camp victim is something that could never have happened without some major league disinformation going down.
These information lockdown artists were geniuses. Where were these masters of deception over the decades when US codes, missile designs and nuclear installation data were falling down behind copiers, suddenly appearing in China or being accidentally published in open source?
The backstory of Jackson and the Nation of Islam:
But for the circle of handlers who surrounded Jackson during his final years, their golden goose could not be allowed to run dry. Bankruptcy was not an option.
These, after all, were not the handlers who had seen him through the aftermath of the Arvizo trial and who had been protecting his fragile emotional health to the best of their ability. They were gone, and a new set of advisers was in place.
The clearout had apparently been engineered by his children’s nanny, Grace Rwaramba, who was gaining considerable influence over Jackson and his affairs and has been described as the ‘queen bee’ by those around Jackson.
Rwaramba had ties to the black militant organisation, the Nation of Islam, and its controversial leader, Louis Farrakhan, whom she enlisted for help in running Jackson’s affairs.
Before long, the Nation was supplying Jackson’s security detail and Farrakhan’s son-in-law, Leonard Muhammad, was appointed as Jackson’s business manager, though his role has lessened significantly in recent years.
In late 2008, a shadowy figure who called himself Dr Tohme Tohme suddenly emerged as Jackson’s ‘official spokesman’.
Read the rest.
Sunday, June 28, 2009
"On the other hand, AC's strive to be the best at the culture that they inherited from Europe. Throughout the West, they are tops in their professions as lawyers, doctors, engineers, Ivy League professors and business moguls; this is all well and good. It's when they decide to engage us as politicians that things become messy and convoluted. The African colonial politician (ACP) feigns repulsion towards the hegemonic paradigms of Western civilization. But at the same time, he is completely enamored of the trappings of its aristocracy or elite culture." She's pegging Obama here, just pegging him. He's totally caught up in the trappings of aristocracy or elite culture, taking the plane up to New York, flying the kids over to Paris. This is the stuff about the job he loves, he's enamored of it.
Remind you of Mugabe who lives it up as people starve?
It is of passing interest that the "profession" of "Journalism" itself requires no moral celibacy on the part of scribes ( pride, envy, wrath, sloth, lust, avarice, and gluttony being required activities for advancement -- Current Champions: Perez Hilton and his life partner Arianna Huffington.) The position of the media/entertainment industry en masse is that none of the seven deadly sins are allowed to be present in a Republican. Conversely, all seven deadly sins must not only be present but be celebrated in a Democrat. But since all this is well known and daily shown, we will let this interest in the media's position pass for the moment. Besides, it is futile since long and continuing research into the activities of our media today has shown, again and again, that you cannot insult whores.
But, as a Republican, he cannot screw everyone over. The screwing and the screwing over must be left to the Democrats. They will never be charged with "not keeping it in their pants" since they have had it out of their pants since before puberty when they went off to raise millions by sitting on the lap of that die-hard but finally dead Democrat, Michael Jackson.
Did I do that?
Because we have another Duke Rape case. And this time it’s probably not a hoax.
About the author, Professor Mike Adams:
Mike Adams is a verbal “bomb thrower” ... and a tenured professor at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. I have been following his essays at Townhall for several years. He has travelled the road from Left Wing Atheist to Right Wing Christian and is an entertaining polemicist in the style of Ann Coulter.
In his writing he examines the seamy underside of Liberal campus culture. Well, here's a seamy underside that is not going to get much sunlight in the MSM. Nowhere nearly as much attention as the trumped up Duke Lacrosse Rape case.
According to Adams, it seems that
... Duke University has another rape case on its hands. This one may hurt the university nearly as much as the one that rocked its campus back in 2006. Unlike the previous case, this one appears to involve a credible confession of sexual abuse. Like the previous case, crucial facts are already being filtered through the prism of identity politics.
Frank Lombard is the associate director of Duke’s Center for Health Policy. The university administrator was recently arrested by the FBI and charged with offering up his adopted 5-year-old son for sex. I tried to contact Frank Lombard over the weekend to probe his expertise regarding the health benefits of raping small children. So far, he’s declined to comment.
University administrator Lombard is accused of logging on to a chat room online and describing himself as a “perv dad for fun.” The detective who wisely looked into the suspicious screen name says that Lombard admitted to molesting his own adopted son. All this was before allegedly inviting a stranger to travel to North Carolina from another state to statutorily rape his already-molested adopted son.
Duke is known for its radical faculty that is a virtual parody of political correctness.
… when several white Duke Lacrosse players were accused of raping a black stripper. A whopping 88 professors signed a statement accusing the players of both racism and rape. Such was their regard for the presumption of innocence.
Perhaps even more stunning was the response of some professors after it became apparent that the white lacrosse players were innocent. After that became so obvious the school had to readmit the students, Professor Kate Holloway resigned her committee assignments in protest.
It should be noted that the DA who tried to railroad the Duke students was later disbarred and went to jail for his crimes. The Duke faculty never apologized and continues to defend its initial position. The case engendered a book and a blog, "Durham in Wonderland" devoted to exposing the sickening hypocrisy of the Duke faculty community.
But back to the current Duke Sex scandal. This time the perps are not students. He is white, however, which should make him ripe for condemnation. But ….
And here is a big but … he is homosexual. And he adopted two black children. And he is pimping these black children to strangers. And it has been alleged that he has been filmed performing a variety of sex acts on these children.
What is the proper response of the Duke faculty to this outrage? They will be torn.
White = bad!
Male = bad!
Homosexual = good!
Homosexual adopting children = very good!
Performing sex acts on children = keep you laws out of my bedroom?
What is a proper Liberal professor at Duke to do? Stay tuned.
Endnote: The Virginian Pilot had an AP story on this which told you very little. This will probably be the take from the MSM. They have more important things to inform their readers about: the death of another child abuser, Michael Jackson, and the infidelity of South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford. By all means, editors, stay away from this one, it does not fit the template.
UPDATE: More information on Frank Lombard. It seems that he was a Vestryman of the Episcopal Church of the Advocate in Durham, NC. The church describes itself as practicing "radical hospitality." It is also busy scrubbing its website of any mention of Frank Lombard.
I have only one comment to make about this. It is not only a cowardly thing to do, it's not a Christian thing to do.
They were perfectly happy to have a gay man with two adopted "African American" children as a leading member of the church. But he's now exposed as a pedophile practicing perverted sex with children and offering them to strangers to feed his sexual fantasies.
Now that he is exposed as a sinner before the entire world, and now that his persona is being torn down, his shame is at its peak, he is most in need of Christ's forgiveness. Christ's apostles here on earth are the members of his church. And rather than practicing "radical hospitality" they are scurrying for cover; not willing to face the sins that they have enabled.
"Radical hospitality," not so much. A bunch of whitened sepulchers is more like it.
A new and even more scandalous rape allegation has surfaced at Duke University. Yet the usual media and campus PC crowd are keeping mighty quiet. Identity politics apparently trumps all sense of outrage....
I am afraid that as far as the media and academic communities are involved, it is not the crime itself that matters, but rather whether the alleged perp is a member of an "oppressor" group. Although white, Lombard is gay, so in the interest of avoiding unpleasant stories involving homosexual adoption, the media is anxious to shut down public interest in the affair.
However, the outspokenness and willingness to judge in advance a case involving white jocks - easy targets - of Duke and media, inevitably place a spotlight on their handling of another Duke rape allegation....
All this coming in the wake of another highly publicized incident at the same prominent university? I don't think they can suppress this one. The conservative media have the power to put this case on the national agenda. It is too dramatic.
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Dems will lose in 2010. (It's the economy, stupid!) By then it may be too late.
Last week I detailed how air, trucking, and rail shipping is down 20% year-over-year. Global trade is down about 30% in the major exporting countries ...
Last month saw the number of unemployed rise by 345,000. What was not in the headline data was that 217,000 of those jobs were estimated from the "birth-death" ratio. ...
In other words, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) entered an estimate that 217,000 new jobs were created. Does anyone really believe that? Without that fudge factor, unemployment rose by 562,000!
In earlier recessions hiring picked up as manufacturers expanded production. In a service economy the re-hiring process is much slower. That's what happened in 1992. The nationalization of the US auto industry does not bode well for a consumer-led manufacturing recovery.
... should labor market conditions instead proceed along the path taken in the 1992 recovery, the unemployment rate could peak close to 11% in mid-2010 and remain above 9% through the end of 2011."
That is not in any Congressional budget forecast. Want to run an election campaign at 10% unemployment levels?
... This projection indicates that the level of labor market slack would be higher by the end of 2009 than experienced at any other time in the post-World War II period, implying a longer and slower recovery path for the unemployment rate. This suggests that, more than in previous recessions, when the economy rebounds, employers will tap into their existing workforces rather than hire new workers. This could substantially slow the recovery of the outflow rate and put upward pressure on future unemployment rates."
Thanks to the fear of losing their homes and jobs people are increasing their savings at an incredible rate.
From a negative 3% in late 2005 (the result of massive borrowing, primarily mortgage equity withdrawal and credit cards), we have risen to a positive 6.9%. That is the highest rate since 1993.
It bears repeating: the recovery will not be on the backs of the consumer. And with credit hard to find and even harder to get, it will be slow to come from industry.
Final thought for today. The Congressional Budget Office released another report this week, saying that the current deficit levels are unsustainable. They suggest that either taxes must increase by $440 billion or spending must be cut by a like amount, or some combination. If you assume some of the new health-care and other programs are enacted, the number comes closer to $700 billion.
This is not a Congress that wants to cut other parts of the budget by $700 billion. Raising taxes by $700 billion (over 4% of GDP) will dip us back into recession. Not raising taxes will result in debt that cannot be funded at anywhere close to today's rates. A recent IMF study is very sobering about the worldwide problem of growing country debt. Finding a trillion dollars in the market every year, when every other country is also trying to raise debt is simply not going to happen. It will destroy the dollar. There are few good choices in front of us, and fewer still good choices that are likely.
Team Obama, Pelosi and Reed are Mad Hatters that have seized the wheel of the ship of state and have no idea of the carnage they are unleashing on the American economy. Over the next year they are going to push and pull on economic levers and they will find them disconnected. Forget about the economy returning to normal. We are facing a New Normal and God help us because the government can't.
The American Nomenklatura and the Health Care Debate
OBAMA OPTS OUT OF OBAMACARE
While Obama thinks that your medical care may have to be discontinued and you may just have to take painkillers until you're dead; for himself he has other plans.
Without question, the most damaging moment for Obama came when he acknowledged that in spite of the rationing implicit in his public health care plan, he would still pay out-of-pocket to obtain the best health care for his family. As reported by ABC’s Jake Tapper, “President Obama struggled to explain today whether his health care reform proposals would force normal Americans to make sacrifices that wealthier, more powerful people – like the president himself – wouldn’t face.”
Thank you for contacting me regarding health care reform. I appreciate your taking the time to share your views and concerns.
As you know, addressing the health care crisis in our country is a top priority for me and my colleagues in Congress. There are 47 million Americans without health insurance and millions more that are underinsured. Health care costs currently consume more than $2 trillion per year and are estimated to reach over $4 trillion by 2017, jeopardizing family budgets and the long term financial stability of our system. Despite these huge expenditures, the United States ranks 42nd in the world in life expectancy, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, and our health care system ranks lower than many countries on quality, access, efficiency, equity, and preventative care. We must improve the value and availability of care while addressing the increasing burden health care costs are placing on American families. Providing all Americans with access to affordable health insurance also means that the cost of uncompensated care for the uninsured will not be added onto the costs of the insured.
I believe that everyone in this country should have access to health insurance that is affordable, that provides adequate coverage, and that is always available. We can do this by producing better information regarding treatment, promoting health and preventing disease, and creating incentives so that all Americans can receive quality health care. We can offer Americans better, more affordable health care choices while allowing those who are insured to keep their coverage. We should also closely examine the role that health insurance companies play on the rising costs of health insurance in this country.
As the Senate continues to debate health care reform, please be assured that your views will be very helpful to me and my staff. I hope that you will continue to share your views with us in the years ahead.
For people with short memories, Jim Webb defeated George Allen based on a smear campaign run by the media surrounding the term “macaca,” a word that was classified as racist despite the fact that no one had ever heard of it. Shortly after assuming office there was an incident with a handgun owned by Webb, a crime in Washington DC, that no one was ever charged with.
Note that the letter starts Webb’s argument with the statement that there is a health care “crisis.” There is not. Everyone in the country has access to health care, and very good health care.
Second, there is a fake statistic about the uninsured, and a reference to the underinsured” (whatever that means). According to the article in Investor’s Business Daily, 18 million of those uninsured have incomes over $50,000 per year and 20% of all uninsured have incomes over $70,000 annually. They simply decided not to buy insurance. A further 27% of the “uninsured” are illegal aliens. Another 20% are uninsured for a few months a year.
Is it really a good idea to tax working people to subsidize those who refuse to pay for a necessity they could easily buy? Is it a good idea to tax working Americans to pay health insurance for illegals?
The answer, of course, is no.
Then Webb raises the issue of the quality of our health care with the spurious life expectancy statistic. At first glance it seems that the best health care should create longer life. And it does. But there are other factors like lifestyles, diet and heredity that have much more of an effect than health care on longevity. A study by the National Center for Public Policy Research concludes that:
There is no relationship between life expectancy and spending on health care. Greece, the country that spends the least per capita on health care, has higher life expectancy than seven other countries, including Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States. Spain, which spends the second least per capita on health care, has higher life expectancy than ten other countries that spend more.
More robust statistical analysis confirms that health care spending is not related to life expectancy. Studies of multiple countries using regression analysis found no significant relationship between life expectancy and the number of physicians and hospital beds per 100,000 population or health care expenditures as a percentage of GDP. Rather, life expectancy was associated with factors such as sanitation, clean water, income, and literacy rate.8 A recent study examined cross-national data from 1980 to 1998. Although the regression model used initially found an association between health care expenditure and life expectancy, that association was no longer significant when gross domestic product (GDP) per capita was added to the model.9 Indeed, GDP per capita is one of the more consistent predictors of life expectancy.
Yet the United States has the highest GDP per capita in the world, so why does it have a life expectancy lower than most of the industrialized world? The primary reason is that the U.S. is ethnically a far more diverse nation than most other industrialized nations. Factors associated with different ethnic backgrounds - culture, diet, etc. - can have a substantial impact on life expectancy. Comparisons of distinct ethnic populations in the U.S. with their country of origin find similar rates of life expectancy. For example, Japanese-Americans have an average life expectancy similar to that of Japanese.10
Which leads me to the issue with the new nomenklatura - a term that seems more and more applicable to members of this government and administration (tax cheats galore).
In my reply to Webb, I raised the issue of special treatment for government officials who are specifically exempted from the regulations that are in the proposed health care bill that's under consideration.
I do not want the government to determine when my quality of life is such that giving me a pain pill and wait for me to die is the most cost effective way of dealing with my medical condition. That is not my way of putting it, that was president Obama during this ABC infomercial who made that statement. That is the way that countries who have government health care deal with serious medical problems as people age.
Furthermore, I want any system that applies to me to apply to you and all the other people in political power. Again, President Obama said that he would opt out of any government mandated program for his own family. How about you, Jim? Do you and members of Congress and officials in this administration have access to special treatment at Walter Reed or other special government hospitals that we, the public, can't access? The Russians had a name for that class of people: the nomenklatura.
I await his reply.
What’s the expiration date on pledges?
HOPE AND CHANGE! Earlier this week, the White House officially abandoned President Obama’s “Sunlight before Signing” pledge. Those pledges all have expiration dates. All of ‘em.
Linking to the Volokh Conspiracy:
The End of Transparency (Before It Ever Began):
Earlier this week, the White House officially abandoned President Obama's "Sunlight before Signing" pledge (which I discussed here and here). As the NYT reported:
And then there's the pledge to run an open, science based government at the EPA. Of course only the fools who voted for Obama really believed it ... or pretended to.
From The Corner:
This week, CEI released evidence to the public, by means of a filing of comments with the Environmental Protection Agency, that the EPA was suppressing science skeptical of the harmful effects of global warming. By taking this action, Obama's EPA demonstrated its hypocrisy when it comes to the role of science in its decision-making. Shortly before assuming office, EPA administrator Lisa Jackson declared: “As Administrator, I will ensure EPA’s efforts to address the environmental crises of today are rooted in three fundamental values: science-based policies and programs, adherence to the rule of law, and overwhelming transparency.” Jan. 23, 2009. This followed the president’s own January 21 memo to agency heads on “Transparency and Open Government.” And in an April 27 speech to the National Academy of Sciences, the president declared that, “under my administration, the days of science taking a back seat to ideology are over.”
Did you hope he would change his pledges?
Jonah has excerpted part of his book dealing with Hitler's plans to destroy Christianity.
It is one of the triumphs of the Left that they have been able to label Nazis as right wing for nearly 70 years. The exact point at which the Nazis (National Socialist Worker's Party) became "right wing" was when the Germans attacked their allies, the Russians, and Josef Stalin re-labelled Adolf Hitler as a right-winger. The Left has been doing it ever since.
Huzzah! Thanks to a few pointed questions from the press corps at a White House news conference, the long Obama captivity of the media is at an end. The Hotline, an inside-the-Beltway tip sheet, proclaimed June 23 “The Day the Love Ended.”
The New York Daily News’s Michael Goodwin celebrates the press corps’s ability to channel the mood of the country: “By peppering the President with forceful questions . . . and by challenging some of his slippery answers, reporters captured the changing tone in the country. Like the end of a real honeymoon, blind infatuation is giving way to a more accurate view of reality.”
“The press corps gets it,” Goodwin writes. “For Obama, the hard part begins now.”
Swamis and carnival contortionists who can fit their bodies into Happy Meal boxes could learn something from the press about flexibility, given its ability to effortlessly pat its own back.
Silly me, I thought the main job of the press was to challenge slippery answers and ask tough questions, not to do that only when it helps “capture a tone.”
But what truly confuses me is how a few tough questions make up for months of forehead-scraping obeisance to The One. Suddenly these half-dozen reporters are media redeemers? “They Asked Tough Questions for Our Sins.”
Indeed, shouldn’t this be a moment for reflection on how bad the press has been until now? Instead of “The Honeymoon Is Over,” why isn’t the headline, “Handful of Reporters Make Colleagues Look Like Chumps”?
As Kool Aid–allergic columnist Robert Samuelson has noted, such sycophancy is a serious public-policy problem because the president is proposing a radical overhaul of pretty much everything, and for the most part the press hasn’t cared that his explanations are iffier than gas-station sushi and his assurances are more dubious than a North Korean press release. Obama’s ongoing promise that he’s “creating or saving” jobs is as plausible as the chess-team captain’s claim that his supermodel girlfriend can’t fly down from Canada for the prom.
Maybe the fly infestation at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. has something to do with the fact that the White House is a central hub of bovine manure distribution?
There is no redemption for the press. It has compromised itself so far that, like a two bit crack whore, it's never going to get a marriage proposal.
Friday, June 26, 2009
Without question, the most damaging moment for Obama came when he acknowledged that in spite of the rationing implicit in his public health care plan, he would still pay out-of-pocket to obtain the best health care for his family. As reported by ABC’s Jake Tapper, “President Obama struggled to explain today whether his health care reform proposals would force normal Americans to make sacrifices that wealthier, more powerful people – like the president himself – wouldn’t face.”
Though it is not in the standard Republican playbook, the opponents of Obamacare should argue that his program is fundamentally unfair and at odds with America’s egalitarian commitments. Assuming that Republicans are correct, and the creation of a public-plan will lead to the collapse, rather than invigoration, of private health insurance, the end result of Obamacare will be a massive shift from an employer-based system of private health insurance toward government-provided care.
And Republicans need to note at every opportunity that after this transition takes place, the rich and powerful will still be able to get all the care they want. Last night the President spoke about the need to ration care to bring down costs. That can only be done in a public system. Those who have access to private health care will still have their choice of doctors, hospitals, and procedures.
In other words, Obamacare, contrary to its promise, will entrench rather than eliminate the Two Americas, maintaining a system of private coverage for the rich, and imposing a government bureaucracy that rations care on the middle class.
American people are - on the whole - opposed to the kind of draconian levelling that socialism and communism imposes on a nation. But it is useful to point out to those who support the equalization of outcomes, that those so-called egalitarian systems have superior outcomes for the powerful and the well-connected, as Obama made very clear an is medical care infomercial.
Jake Tapper at ABC news broke from the ranks of his brethren by highlighting the question that led to this devastating admission...
It's always the case that the elites set themselves apart. As in Animal Farm all animals were equal, some were just more equal than others.
President Obama struggled to explain today whether his health care reform proposals would force normal Americans to make sacrifices that wealthier, more powerful people -- like the president himself -- wouldn't face.
The probing questions came from two skeptical neurologists during ABC News' special on health care reform, "Questions for the President: Prescription for America," anchored from the White House by Diane Sawyer and Charles Gibson.
Dr. Orrin Devinsky, a neurologist and researcher at the New York University Langone Medical Center, said that elites often propose health care solutions that limit options for the general public, secure in the knowledge that if they or their loves ones get sick they will be able to afford the best care available, even if it's not provided by insurance.
Beldar on the Defender of the Faith - of Islam
Did you have the same reaction that I did back in 2001 when — in an official speech specifically directed to the Christian world during one of his trips to the Middle East, a speech whose official theme was "A New Beginning" — President George W. Bush firmly rejected the constitutional separation of church and state, and instead proclaimed that his official duties included the defense and promotion of one religion (emphasis mine):So I have known Christianity on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed. That experience guides my conviction that partnership between America and Christianity must be based on what Christianity is, not what it isn't. And I consider it part of my responsibility as President of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Christianity wherever they appear. (Applause.)
That was actually today, not 2001. It was President Obama, not President Bush. And it was Islam, not Christianity
Castle - DE the choice of such average American as Chisty Todd Whitman and Pierre duPont IV. Country club all the way, does not have to worry about the cost of things.
More stupid government official jokes (The country is in the very best of hands).
If you think a travel agent's job is boring, just look at these examples:
A DC airport ticket agent offers some examples of 'why' our country is in trouble!
1. I had a New Hampshire Congresswoman ask for an aisle seat so that her hair wouldn't get messed up by being near the window..
2.. I got a call from a candidate's staffer, who wanted to go to Capetown I started to explain the length of the flight and the passport information, and then she interrupted me with, ''I'm not trying to make you look stupid, but Capetown is in Massachusetts .''
Without trying to make her look stupid, I calmly explained, ''Cape Cod is in Massachusetts, Capetown is in Africa ''
Her response - click.
3. A senior Vermont Congressman called, furious about a Florida package we did. I asked what was wrong with the vacation in Orlando.
He said he was expecting an ocean-view room. I tried to explain that's not possible, since Orlando is in the middle of the state.
He replied, 'don't lie to me, I looked on the map and Florida is a very thin state!'' (OMG)
4. I got a call from a lawmaker's wife who asked, ''Is it possible to see England from Canada?''
I said, ''No.''
She said, ''But they look so close on the map.'' (OMG, again!)
5. An aide for a cabinet member once called and asked if he could rent a car in Dallas.
When I pulled up the reservation, I noticed he had only a 1-hour layover in Dallas.
When I asked him why he wanted to rent a car, he said, ''I heard Dallas was a big airport, and we will need a car to drive between gates to save time.''
6. An Illinois Congresswoman called last week. She needed to know how it was possible that her flight from Detroit left at 8:30 a.m., and got to Chicago at 8:33 a.m.
I explained that Michigan was an hour ahead of Illinois, but she couldn't understand the concept of time zones.
Finally, I told her the plane went fast, and she bought that.
7. A New York lawmaker called and asked, ''Do airlines put your physical description on your bag so they know whose luggage belongs to whom?''
I said, 'No, why do you ask?'
She replied, ''Well, when I checked in with the airline, they put a tag on my luggage that said (FAT), and I'm overweight. I think that's very rude!''
After putting her on hold for a minute, while I looked into it. (I was dying laughing). I came back and explained the city code for Fresno, CA is (FAT - Fresno Air Terminal), and the airline was just putting a destination tag on her luggage..
8. A Senator's aide called to inquire about a trip package to Hawaii. After going over all the cost info, she asked, ''Would it be cheaper to fly to California, and then take the train to Hawaii ?''
9. I just got off the phone with a freshman Congressman who asked, ''How do I know which plane to get on?''
I asked him what exactly he meant, to which he replied, ''I was told my flight number is 823, but none of these planes have numbers on them.''
10. A lady Senator called and said, ''I need to fly to Pepsi-Cola, Florida.. Do I have to get on one of those little computer planes?''
I asked if she meant fly to Pensacola, FL on a commuter plane.
She said, ''Yeah, whatever, smarty!''
11. A senior Senator called and had a question about the documents he needed in order to fly to China. After a lengthy discussion about passports, I reminded him that he needed a visa. 'Oh, no I don't. I've been to China many times and never had to have one of those.''
I double checked and sure enough, his stay required a visa.
When I told him this he said, ''Look, I've been to China four times and every time they have accepted my American Express!''
12 A New Mexico Congress woman called to make reservations, ''I want to go from Chicago to Rhino, New York .'' I was at a loss for words. Finally, I said, ''Are you sure that's the name of the town?'' '
'Yes, what flights do you have?'' replied the lady. After some searching, I came back with, ''I'm sorry, ma'am, I've looked up every airport code in the country and can't find a rhino anywhere.'
''The lady retorted, ''Oh, don't be silly! Everyone knows where it is. Check your map!''
So I scoured a map of the state of New York and finally offered, ''You don't mean Buffalo, do you?''
The reply? ''Whatever! I knew it was a big animal.''
Now you know why the Government is in the shape that it's in!
Could anyone be this DUMB?
YES, THEY WALK AMONG US, ARE IN POLITICS, AND THEY CONTINUE TO BREED
You start off each day with reading this then you have no reason to ask
the Question: What are they thinking in DC.
How stupid are members of congress?
We haven’t the patience nor the gentlemanly demeanour to have done what Dr. Bernanke did yesterday when he answered truly stupid questions from House committee members for more than three hours. Obviously angry at times; obviously embarrassed at times; obviously shocked by the stupidity of the questioning at times, Dr. Bernanke did his best to defend himself and the Federal Reserve Bank itself from the attacks made upon him and upon the institution by the Congress.
The focus was obviously upon the Fed’s role in “forcing” the Bank of America to go ahead with its takeover of Merrill Lynch. The Bank’s CEO, Mr. Lewis, has said that he was pressured by Treasury and by the Fed to go ahead with this “merger” or face removal from office. His accusations have been an embarrassment to Dr. Bernanke personally, and the attacks made upon him yesterday by congressmen and women who are obviously his intellectual inferior were uncalled for and were “grandstanding” of the first and worst order.
Watching the far-left-of-centre Dennis Kucinich try to accuse Dr. Bernanke either of maliciousness, or of conflicts of interest, or of mismanagement of the nation’s monetary affairs bordered upon the inane. Why Dr. Bernanke did not answer Mr. Kucinich’s questions with the simple statement to the effect that “Mr. Kucinich, wasn’t it Cleveland that defaulted on some of its debt obligations during your tenure in office as that city’s mayor three decades ago?” We’d have answered his questions in that manner, but Dr. Bernanke… a son of the South and a gentleman accordingly… could not do so or would not do so. He is too cultured for that sort of thing. So he endured the grilling.
We watched as he answered the truly stupid Ms. Kaptur… also from Ohio…without the urge to leap across the table and strangle her. It was Ms. Kaptur who only a year or so ago began her round of questions to Dr. Bernanke with the statement, “Mr. Treasury Secretary.” Dr. Bernanke said, very calmly, “I am not the Treasury Secretary.” Ms. Kaptur responded in a stament that should be entered into the Hall of Fame of Congressional faux pas, “Who are you then, Sir?” She did not recognize the Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board, and she’s in a position of some authority on the Banking Committee!
Had we been Dr. Bernanke, at the first signs of Congressional stupidity… and that might have taken all but two minutes before the idiocy was unleashed in full… we’d have leaped across the table and given the committee members a good sound thrashing.
Thankfully we are not Dr. Bernanke.
I’ve read the Constitution several times, but I’ve never seen the part that says that elected officials are allowed to physically assault people who’d like to ask questions. Like, say, about his questionable earmark habits:Congressman Alan Grayson has had a close relationship with the civil rights group for which he tried to get hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars. As WDBO first reported, the freshman Representative requested $350,000 for the Florida Civil Rights Association, despite its history of controversy, and being run by a man the state says is not trustworthy enough to be a bail bondsman.
(H/T: the NRCC)
Finding the constraints demanded by the dignity of the office too much to bear, Rep. Grayson? Because that’s easily fixed.
Question for the public: who is the bearded guy who called the cameraman a Jackass?
Felony charges have been filed and an arrest warrant issued for a well-known Orange County political activist suspected of committing election and voter registration fraud, the California secretary of State's office announced Wednesday.
Investigators in the agency's election-fraud unit said Nativo V. Lopez, 57, of Santa Ana leased office space in Boyle Heights and registered to vote using that address although he lived with his family in Orange County. They also say Lopez, president of the Mexican American Political Assn., cast an illegal ballot in L.A. in the 2008 presidential primary.
The Los Angeles County district attorney's office, which is working with the secretary of State, charged Lopez with four felonies: fraudulent voter registration, fraudulent document filing, perjury and fraudulent voting. A warrant was issued for his arrest and bail was set at $10,000. The offenses carry penalties of up to three years in prison.
Instapundit asks: "What is it with these people and Trig Palin?"
There is a deep sickness in the soul of some of these Democrats that they have such a consuming hatred of Sarah Palin that they would disfigure her child. for them, it's about hatred of anyone who does not abort their Downs Syndrome children, who is a Christian, who is willing to openly profess her beliefs, who is a free and accomplished woman, who has the looks that they envy, and who is wildly popular with most of the American people.
For all those things they can't stand her and want her and her baby humiliated or dead.
On the same page Blue Oasis blog is also asking for donations from democrats (on the sidebar) to continue to slander the popular Alaskan governor and post distorted photos of her children.
The photoshop doesn't look at all like Eddie [Burke - a radio show host]. It simply looks like a grotesque manipulation of Gov. Palin's beautiful baby boy. It was a tasteless and heartless thing to do. It was the sort of thing a person who is sick with hatred would do.
Biegel then makes a crude sexual suggestion about Eddie Burke and the governor. Biegel is objectifying the governor. Turning her into a sex object and suggesting that Eddie's admiration of her is nothing more than hormonal.
Why do they always attack her for her "femaleness" -- for her appearance or her attractiveness as a woman or her role as a mother? It's crude and sexist. It's not okay.
From Gateway Pundit:
More PDS... After hearing about how South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford had "disappeared for four days" Sen. Kerry joked: ‘Too bad’ Gov. Sarah Palin didn’t go missing.
UPDATE: Tom W. sends this on the face superimposed on Trig:
It's a conservative radio-talk show host named Eddie Burke.
He once called pro-choice women "baby-killing maggots," so his face was put on Trig's body because--as a leftist told me--it's the face of one person who should have been aborted put on the body of another person who should've been aborted.
The one on the left is Alaska Democratic party operative Linda Kellen Biegel, aka "Celtic Diva." The one on the right is Democrat Senator Begich.
More on "Celtic Diva"
Just a reminder for those who may have forgotten - Linda Kellen Biegel of "Celtic Diva's Blue Oasis", behind the latest frivolous ethics complaint against Governor Palin, was the official Alaskan blogger for the DNC.
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Obama, Iran, Liberals, Media (but I repeat myself)
You might be a scaredy-cat if ... the president of France is talking tougher than you are.
More than a week ago, French president Nicolas Sarkozy said: "The ruling power claims to have won the elections ... if that were true, we must ask why they find it necessary to imprison their opponents and repress them with such violence."
But liberals rushed to assure us that Obama's weak-kneed response to the Iranian uprising and the consequent brutal crackdown was a brilliant foreign policy move. (They also proclaimed his admission that he still smokes "lion-hearted" and "statesmanlike.")
As our own Supreme Leader B. Hussein Obama (peace be upon him) explained, "It's not productive given the history of U.S.-Iranian relations to be seen as meddling."
You see, if the president of the United States condemned election fraud in Iran, much less put in a kind word for the presidential candidate who is not crazy, it would somehow crush the spirit of the protesters when they discovered, to their horror, that the Great Satan was on their side. (It also wouldn't do much for Al Franken in Minnesota.)
Liberals hate America, so they assume everyone else does, too.
David Squires defends Jeremiah Wright's right to be an anti-Semitic, racist white hating, America damning, aids conspiracy believing bigot.
He begins by telling us that the Jeremiah Wright gave a good sermon that he enjoyed. He just doesn’t remember what it was about.
And Wright built a big church.
There are some people who are compelling speakers who can move large crowds. There are a few people who can build mass movements.
The history of the 20th Century was dominated by several men who managed to do that. The leaders of Russia, Germany and Italy are examples of men who could do that with literally catastrophic results.
There are two things to keep in mind about people like that. (1) They often create cults of personality that cause their followers to do very bad things. Think not just the previous examples, but add Jim Jones. (2) Jeremiah Wright built a large congregation because many people who were attracted to him believed in what he preached, including racial animosity, anti-Semitism, and conspiracy theories. To be sure, they were sprinkled in as spice in a meal, but they provided a definite flavor. And the people who attended his church liked the flavor.
Free people, people who want to create their own objectives, set their own goals and live their own lives are suspicious of demagogues, of people who draw adoring crowds that like the way something is said, but really can’t remember exactly what was said. Be very careful of those who hold a mirror before them so that their fans can see in that mirror exactly what they want to see; someone like Barack Obama and – perhaps – Jeremiah Wright.
I defend Wright’s right to say what he wants to say. His brand of bigotry should not be outlawed, but a society that applauds what he says is not a healthy society.
Barney Frank to Fannie and Freddie: "That was fun, let's do it again."
Most Americans know that the root of the current economic crisis is the fact that we were making loans to people who couldn't afford to own a house. Specifically, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were pressured to make SUBPRIME LOANS to people without steady income and without down payments. This experiment was an abject failure and let to our current economic downturn. Guess what - they are at it again!
Back when the housing mania was taking off, Massachusetts Congressman Barney Frank famously said he wanted Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to "roll the dice" in the name of affordable housing. That didn't turn out so well, but Mr. Frank has since only accumulated more power. And now he is returning to the scene of the calamity -- with your money. He and New York Representative Anthony Weiner have sent a letter to the heads of Fannie and Freddie exhorting them to lower lending standards for condo buyers. You read that right. After two years of telling us how lax lending standards drove up the market and led to loans that should never have been made, Mr. Frank wants Fannie and Freddie to take more risk in condo developments with high percentages of unsold units, high delinquency rates or high concentrations of ownership within the development.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
This became, perhaps even more than the election of Barack Obama to the Presidency, Sullivan’s driving motivation during the 2008 campaign, if the quantity of his writings are any indication of his drive. While others were intimidated by photos of Mrs. Palin in late-stage pregnancy looking like a woman in late-stage pregnancy, the biological impossibility of a seventeen year-old girl giving birth to two non-fraternal children less than eleven months apart, and other indicia of what the rest of us take for ordinary reality, that laser-like mind knew no fear. Without a blow by blow of those two months of Herculean effort, it’s impossible to fully capture the way in which the Atlantic rivaled the New England Journal of Medicine in pushing the edge of medical consensus; a sampling will have to suffice. (Note that I’m not delving into the way Sullivan immediately leaped into the breach on the news that McCain had selected Palin to inform us that a woman about whom he had heard virtually nothing was unqualified to hold the sinecure of the Vice Presidency, and stayed on-message while he revealed his understanding of gynecology — I don’t want any readers to think I’m spinning his acumen from thin air.)
Read the whole thing.
For those following the "Did Krugman advocate a housing bubble?" debate, first ably blogged here by Big Tim Cavanaugh last week, a skilled summation, and I think a pretty definite settling of the question (answer: yes!)
They had initially sought to enter the grounds of a facility run by Massey Energy, the biggest company conducting mountaintop mining in West Virginia. But several hundred miners and relatives, along with supporters of the coal industry, blocked the entrance, according to the Charleston Gazette.
Labels: global warming
…country's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, calling for an improvement in relations, according to interviews and the leader himself.
An Iranian with knowledge of the overture, however, told The Washington Times that the letter was sent between May 4 and May 10 and laid out the prospect of "cooperation in regional and bilateral relations" and a resolution of the dispute over Iran's nuclear program.
You can imagine the dismay of Team Obama when the Iranian people rose up in protest against the fraudulent election and threatened to topple the dictatorship of the mullahs. Events and pictures of the beatings and deaths have forced Obama to come out with statements condemning the violence, but never the theocracy which actually rules the country.
As I have said before, Obama is objectively on the side of the people who are murdering Iranian women and students, believing that he can strike a deal with the mullahs in exchange for the end of ostracism of Iran. The revolution puts that effort in doubt. But it will get no help from Obama.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Frank J's Random Thoughts
If being a man is too much for Obama, could he at least aim for butch lesbian?
Brutally murdering people isn’t enough to lose a party invitation from Obama. Kinda puts his relationship with Ayers in a new light.
New hard line from Obama: If Iran continues its brutal behavior, no sprinkles at the ice cream social.
Obama’s actions remind me of all the great leaders who stood silent during massive atrocities.
It’s so wrong to find it funny that Perez Hilton got beaten up, but I CAN’T HELP IT!
Our medical care is great and most people are happy with their care.
But our colleges and universities are charging more and more for less and less. They are becoming less “universities” than Liberal indoctrination camps that provide a nearly useless certificate showing that its graduates are barely literate and trainable once they leave. All this for anywhere from $25,000 to $100,000 per year.
Can Jack Welch save American families and their offspring from this travesty? You can bet your bottom dollar that he will get massive pushback from Big Education.
Monday, June 22, 2009
... the most inept and incompetent President in history. He was wrong on every foreign policy decision he ever made ...
... while other European leaders and even the US Congress have made their condemnation of the current government and their actions clear and have voiced clear support for the demonstrators, Obama has chosen to take the " I don't want to be seen as meddling" approach and has watched it all from the sidelines. As events in Iran become more dramatic, Obama's position has gotten to the point where it's becoming increasingly irrelevant.
Iran has already come out and condemned France, Great Britain and Germany for their "meddling" statements. So what does Obama think? That by trying to stay in the good graces of an oppressive and now murderous regime he is somehow going to affect change through negotiation?
Change is occuring within Iran without Obama.With the protestors having crossed a line of no return experts say it is not going to be possible for the ruling mullahs in Iran to hold onto power without unleashing the worst violence against their own people that the middle east has seen since Sadaam used chemical weapons to put down a revolt of the Kurds.
So one of two things are going to happen. Either the demonstrators are going to succeed in overthrowing the current government which has already become destabilized, or the conservatives in Iran will unleash an unprecedented bloodbath against the protestors. Either way Obama's position of trying to stay in their good graces for the sake of negotiation has become obsolete, a situation that neither he nor his advisors have been able to recognize.
The other argument being made for Obama's soft pedaling is he doesnt want to be used as a "foil" or an excuse by the current governement to unleash more violence against the demonstrators.
Is he kidding? All he has to do is warn Iran publicly against doing just that and make it clear publicly that the safety of the demonstrators is the responsibility of the Iranian government and that any attempts to use the United States as an excuse to commit murder or human rights violations against its own people will be just that -- an excuse.
To see and read and hear these fumbling excuses by the Obama Administration and Obama himself as to why he has chosen "not to meddle" in an unprecedented revolution by the moderates and liberals in Iran is too reminiscent of the ineptness of George Bush to be believed.
As events continue to unfold in Iran, Obama's position is becoming more and more absurd each passing minute....
Obama yesterday decided to issue a statement that was stronger than those of the past few days. But his statement that " the whole world is watching" was still typical Obama -- stating the obvious, borrowing the chants of the anti-war demonstrators in the US in the 1960's and telling us what everyone has known for days and hardly needs to be pointed out --- yes the world is watching.
But Obama's decision to sit on the sidelines in order to preserve some future attempt at negotiating with the current regime has been usurped whether he likes it or not. There are already reports that anywhere from 19 to 150 people have been killed by government police and militia. If this continues and the present government cracks down harder on the demonstrators and the violence increases it will be impossible for Obama to "negotiate" anything with the current Iranian government if they succeed in quashing the revolution. Any outstretched hand to this government after a bloodbath will look like the worst kind of appeasement.
Yet all of this represents a golden opportunity for the United States. If the current government becomes destabilized or even toppled, that, and not Obama's "outstretched hand" to a government that chants "Death to America" would be the best chance of a non-nuclear Iran which would be a benefit to the world.
But so far Obama has not seized the opportunity. He insists on giving legitimacy to the current government..The world seems ready to line up against the current Iranian government and their actions as the statements of condemnation from other European countries have shown. Obama could be the one to rally them. Instead he doesn't want to "meddle".
People are taking their lives into their hands to stand up against a repressive government that poses a threat to the whole world and Obama is worried about Iran's reaction to his own response, which when one thinks about it, doesn't bode well for how Obama would handle negotiations with Ahmedenjad anyway.
Rubin's comments have clarified one other thing: once again, it's all about HIM. The whole rest of the civilized world may be roundly condemning the state sanctioned violence in Iran, but to Obama, it's HIS words, HIS actions, that are the issue. As he has done so often in the campaign and since his election, he presents an image of being above the fray; a Godlike presence hovering over a lower life form, looking not at the people, but looking into a possibility that we lesser mortals cannot see.
No. He. Can't.
Workaday Media Bias and State Budget Crises, Example #1 shows the typical manner in which pretty much any newspaper views government spending.
The only bit in the entire 1,283-word article that even references the widespread and routine state spending increases before the crisis hit is this brief attributed paragraph, presented as if the natural order of things is government growth above and beyond that of inflation and population:
While state general fund spending typically increases by about 6 percent a year, it is expected to decline by 2.2 percent for this fiscal year, Mr. Pattison said. The last year-to-year decline was in 1983, he said, on the heels of a national banking crisis.
"These are some of the worst numbers we have ever seen," said Scott D. Pattison, executive director of the National Association of State Budget Officers[.]
And have the poor state governments have been starved all these many years so that now that revenue is down because people have been thrown out of work they are on starvation budgets? Well .... In 2002 total combined state revenue was $1.097 trillion.... In 2007 this figure had risen to almost $2 trillion. That's an 81 percent increase, at a time when prices plus population increased 19 percent.
In 2002 total combined state revenue was $1.097 trillion.... In 2007 this figure had risen to almost $2 trillion. That's an 81 percent increase, at a time when prices plus population increased 19 percent.
At a time when people who work in private industry are being thrown out of work or are watching their paychecks shrink, a 2.2% reduction is viewed as a catastrophe. To a worker earning $50,000 a year it represents a cut of $1,100 and may call for some adjustments in the family budget. The taxpayer who works in the dreaded "private sector" sucks it up and makes do, glad he still has a job. For the government, making this kind of an adjustment is unthinkable and calls forth histrionics that would make a ham actor blush.
Of course in good times the states and cities spent and spent more with little thought to the future, except the future of getting re-elected by showering goodies on their constituents.
Walking out of the General Assembly building one afternoon, I saw a line of people waiting to plead their case for more money from the Virginia legislature. What was depressing is that not one of those dozens of people crowded into the meeting room and even more standing in line waiting to get inside were there to speak for the taxpayer; the dumb mule who is told to shoulder the ever larger burden and just shut up and take it. Their job is to pay, and pay some more. And if they complain they are described as right-wing knuckle dragging nut jobs that probably listen to Rush Limbaugh and watch Fox News. And the department of Homeland security should watch them carefully because you never know when they can snap. The editorial writers will tell them not to get "uppity."
The Virginian Pilot typically reprints the NY Times news “analysis” a few days after is shows up in the Old Grey Whore. I'll let you know when it shows up.
Media Bias: As much of the U.S. private sector, including health care providers, resists government takeovers, what a sorry sight to see ABC News leap forward to make itself a propaganda arm of the government.
But that's the story as ABC crosses the line from journalism to advocacy in turning its coverage of health care over to the White House.
This Wednesday, on every show from "Good Morning America" (kicking things off with an interview with the president) to "World News Tonight" (broadcast from the Blue Room) to a prime-time special called "Prescription for America" (and emanating from the East Room), the network will puff the Obama administration's trillion-dollar plan to nationalize U.S. health care.
The all-day, White House-based coverage itself amounts to a nationalization — this one of a major media outlet in support of an administration that will return the favor for access at the cost of objectivity and the public's right to know.
Don't think it isn't. This isn't your grandfather's propaganda. Forget public service announcements. Just as some newspaper ads trick themselves up to look like news stories to enhance their credibility, making a partisan program indistinguishable from the nightly "news" is a propaganda tool in the same vein.
Nobody has figured this out better than Barack Obama's political operation, which has manipulated almost all the mainstream media since he began running for the presidency.
Under the cover of news, ABC can present the president's side of the health reform issue as "factual" and leave out the real costs and concerns about government control and rationing of health care. Personal stories that tug at the heartstrings will be featured prominently, as will unchallenged canards about the wonders of socialized medicine.
Long and repetitive coverage will numb the public into thinking all sides have been explored. A token few seconds of time given over to a critic or two will enable ABC to call its coverage "fair." But expect the opposition to be portrayed as heartless or wacko.
The only thing such propaganda can't do is admit its real aims.
ABC insists it will present a balanced picture — as balanced, we suppose, as the political contributions of ABC News employees who gave 80 times more to Obama's campaign ($124,421 to $1,550) as they did to his opponent, John McCain.
With numbers like that, it doesn't take a genius to know what ABC's political atmosphere is like. In any case, ABC's output speaks for itself. The Media Research Center's Business & Media Institute has shown that in the first half of 2009, ABC sources quoted in health care stories shilled for ObamaCare 55 times to its opponents' 18 — a 3-to-1 margin.
The best proof that the public is getting propaganda is that ABC is refusing to take ads from critics who are offering to pay for them. Among those turned away: the Republican National Committee and a group called Conservatives for Patients' Rights.
"Our organization is more than willing to purchase ad time on ABC to present an alternative viewpoint, and our hope is that ABC will reconsider having such viewpoints be part of this crucial debate for the American people," said Rick Scott, group spokesman.
This is a disgrace. Much of the U.S. private sector, from banks to automakers to hospitals, have resisted a government takeover, seeking to maintain their independence. Only the media, which should be the most independent of all, haven't.
ABC's capitulation contrasts sharply with the efforts of other broadcasters such as radio's Rush Limbaugh and TV's Fox News to defend themselves against the so-called Fairness Doctrine and personal attacks from White House staff bidding to silence them.
It also contrasts with brave media outlets overseas, including Globovision, Venezuela's last remaining independent TV station, which is defying Hugo Chavez's goons, or Iran's Twitterers and Facebookers defying the mullahs.
It all amounts to a sad corruption of American journalism. Once upon a time, people would go into journalism to expose the seamy underbelly of American politics. Today, ABC News, in its abject submission to the Obama administration on health care, has decided to become the seamy underbelly.
The Obama whiplash
Obama’s followers are developing whiplash. As event unfolded in Iran and Obama said nothing, the refrain was that Obama’s refusal to condem the Iranian regime for its crackdown was exactly right. ...Must not appear to interfere…. Can’t do anything anyway…. Condemnation will only give ammunition to the Mullahs. Obama’s finely tuned PR machine put out all the reasons why doing nothing, saying nothing was exactly the right thing to do. Going out for frozen custard with the girls was the ultimate geopolitical coup.
Out comes Obama with his condemnation of the Iranian crackdown. The Obama followers now take exactly the opposite approach. Condemning the Iranian regime shows steel. His statement is exactly right. We must assert our moral authority. His condemnation will not strengthen the Iranian regime.
Watching this in action will explain to the current generation of Americans who did not see the Communist Party USA during the 1940s. First, as allies of Hitler, denouncing the warmongers in Washington; then, after Hitler attacked Stalin, doing a 180, overnight.
We were always at war with Eurasia.
For chilling examples of this kind of thinking go to The Volokh Conspiracy.
After President Obama’s big speech on health care, I was among the first to note that I couldn't see how he could possibly keep his promises. Now, according to the Associated Press, the White House has backed off Obama’s promises made just last Monday.
In other words, if you believed something closer to the opposite of what Obama promised, that would be closer to the truth. When Obama said he “will keep this promise”:If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor. Period.
he actually meant:If you like your doctor, many of you will NOT be able to keep your doctor. Period.
And when Obama said he “will keep this promise”:If you like your health care plan, you will be able to keep your health care plan. Period. No one will take it away. No matter what.
Obama really meant:If you like your health care plan, many – perhaps most – of you will NOT be able to keep your health care plan. Period. Someone – perhaps your employer – may take it away. It all depends on how things work out.
Jim Hoagland has this inadvertently amusing passage today:But the president and his advisers still have not adjusted policies and tactics being overtaken by events. This is clear both from the initial "caught in the headlights" reaction by Obama as he temporized — albeit with steely skill — and from accounts of diplomatic and other official sources here.
Sunday, June 21, 2009
Obama smokes. We know it. He’s admitted it.
WHY are there no photos of this?
Not this one. It’s a fake.
So’s this one.
I mean a REAL one.
And has anyone checked Michelle’s suspiciously-fast-growing “victory garden” for the chopped-up corpses of over-zealous paparazzi?