Month: February 2013

Chris Christie Gets CPAC Invite, Offered $3000

NJ Governor Chris Christie was not invited to be a part of the Conservative Political Action Conference, a large annual gathering of conservatives each year in the DC area.

I think he should attend. While we can differ in our politics, shouldn’t we learn more about what he’s all about? How he views the conservative movement? How he looks at 2012 AND 2016?

What is the point in shutting him out?

I want Gov. Christie to attend, and I make him an offer he can’t refuse….SNL style.

[youtube]http://youtu.be/AmuTXigzXtM[/youtube]

Is Obama To Blame For America’s Spending Problem?

This article originally appeared on ChristianPost.com:

In a recent article on CP, I discussed President Obama’s “selective amnesia” in his State of the Union speech. His “Fix-It First” and “protect Americans abroad” proposals were simply rehashes of old campaign speeches (and since he’s been campaigning almost non-stop for five years, he has plenty of material to work with.) I also talked of Obama’s spending, and the $6 Trillion (and counting) added to the national debt so far.

But am I right? Is the spending problem all Obama’s fault?

One of the commenters on the original article was apoplectic over my statement that, “His own outlandish spending has added $6 Trillion the debt, with deficits of over $1 Trillion each year he has been in office thus far.” They stated:

…as soon as you say that you out yourself as a liar and a political hack. The majority of that 6T was added long before he got there, in fact by republicans who are now trying to blame him for it. Utter garbage.

If the conversation is about utter garbage, well, then yes, it would be (and is!) utter garbage to blame the $6 Trillion all or mostly on former President George Bush.

Not exactly utter garbage, the commenter is right to the extent that spending is not the fault of the President alone. He didn’t get to spend all of our cash in a vacuum. Far too often Congress empowered him. Worse than that, a large swath of the American people saw a value in it; selling out unborn generations to fund their ponzi-schemed free (or subsidized)-for-all.

The current national debt is $16 Trillion. And yes, deficits (said in a more kitchen-table friendly way, overspending) have been over $1 Trillion a year for the past four years. According to Reason, 79% of Americans say that government spending has reduced the quality of their lives, or has made no real impact on the quality of life in the US.

Younger Americans see things differently. According to a study from the Panetta Institute, over 50% of college students think that government should be even more involved in economic matters:  (emphasis mine)

Nearly two in three (65%) college students worry that government is getting too involved in the issue of morality while 33% say that government should domore to promote morality in society…However when it comes to economic matters, a slim majority of college students (54%) believe that we need a strong government to handle today’s complex economic problems while 40% take the other side that states the free market can handle today’s complex economic problems without government being involved. And the partisan unity dissipates on economic concerns as majorities of Democrats (68%) and independents (52%) agree that we need a strong government to handle economic problems while 63% of Republicans take the free market position.

These two studies show the sickening problem and the vicious disconnect between our economic reality and the indoctrinated economic fantasy. Since the re-election of President Obama, I have discussed on my radio program how it happened. I have said, repeatedly, that 60 million voters (which I refer to as 50% +1 of the American population, as a way of explaining the slim majority) now believe in the idea that “Government Should Do Something.”

That means that regardless of the problem, 50% + 1 of Americans look to government for a solution. Said differently, more than half of America’s voters want the federal government to take care of them. Turns out Julia is a real girl, after all!

Congress plays an important role in the profligate spending. As the Christian Science Monitor notes, “Between 2001 and 2011, increased discretionary spending amounted to about $3 trillion.” That includes defense spending and Homeland security. It also includes Food Stamps. A record $80 Billion was spent in FY2012 on the SNAP program.

Add on to this President Bush’s TARP spending and President Obama’s stimulus. TARP was, and continues to be, a horrific idea. Bush’s quote, “I had to abandon free market principles in order to save the free market system,” was not only ignorant, but totally wrong. It’s like saying you’re going to run a marathon by going swimming.

And we haven’t even begun to understand the full costs of Obamacare.

Most of these mega-programs were passed, at least in part, by Congress. Their continual unwillingness to confront the major issues, to kick the can down the road,  to find more ways to demonize those who want to engage prudent, smart, sane fiscal policy is disheartening (and infuriating) to those of us who want to abandon these reckless concepts and fix the problems.

But elected officials are only representations of the electorate. Politics Is Downstream Of Culture. Politicians mostly do what their constituents want them to do, so as to earn their votes and stay in office. (This is a direct, and disastrous, consequence of the 17th Amendment.)

So, is the commenter correct? Well, to a point. Blaming America’s spending problem solely on Obama isn’t accurate. (It’s also wrong to blame it all on Bush and Republicans. That is political hackery!) It would be fair to say that President Obama aligns with, and believes in, spending as a way of solving our economic woes. Obama and Keynes (and Krugman) are wrong. You can not spend your way to prosperity.

But they are not alone. Former Speaker Nancy Pelosi refused to accept the idea that there is a spending problem:

“We have to recognize that, which cuts really help us and which cuts hurt our future? And cuts in education, scientific research and the rest are harmful, and they are what are affected by the sequestration,” she said on “Fox News Sunday.” “So, it is almost a false argument to say we have a spending problem. We have a budget deficit problem that we have to address.”

Every cut is harmful to someone, somewhere. That doesn’t mean that the cuts aren’t needed and necessary. In education, we’ve seen that increased budgets do not equate to better educated students. Pelosi employs the demonizing philosophy; those who want to cut her hand pick examples are “harmful.”

Then again, Pelosi thinks members of Congress getting a pay cut would be an attack on their dignity. True story.

The real problem is not the politicians. The problem is a culture that demands instant gratification, an electorate that pressures Representatives to spend money we don’t have, borrowing $.46 out of every dollar, calling anyone who proposes spending cuts “selfish” or worse.

The blame is theirs, and the blame is ours. We have allowed the culture to be hijacked and college students to be indoctrinated, and politicians to advance the “government is the solution to everything” agenda. For if it is the job for government to do “something,” then, by definition, government must do “everything.”

Obama’s Selective State Of The Union Amnesia

This article originally appeared on ChristianPost.com:

In the State of the Union, President Barack Obama engaged a series of lofty goals and challenges for the American people, and for Congress. He railed on education, military preparedness and spending. It was all vaguely familiar. He has said just the opposite over the past four years. It’s easy to explain; President Obama lied has selective amnesia.

President Obama’s speech was better suited for a campaign stop than a State of the Union speech. Instead of addressing the real issues the nation faces, President Obama pushed platitudes and rhetoric. In addressing the debt and the deficit (two very, very different things) Obama stated: (emphasis mine)

Tonight I’ll lay out additional proposals that are fully paid for and fully consistent with the budget framework both parties agreed to just 18 months ago. Let me repeat: Nothing I’m proposing tonight should increase our deficit by a single dime. It is not a bigger government we need, but a smarter government that sets priorities and invests in broad-based growth.

Anyone who pays attention – at all! – to Obama’s record and rhetoric knows that this does not match up to his history. Obama’s first four years were dedicated to bigger government. His own words about “You didn’t build that” were about government being the driver of a “better” society. His own outlandish spending has added $6 Trillion the debt, with deficits of over $1 Trillion each year he has been in office thus far.

Obama also referred to his “Fix-It First” plan, saying:

Ask any CEO where they’d rather locate and hire, a country with deteriorating roads and bridges or one with high-speed rail and Internet, high-tech schools, self- healing power grids…Tonight, I propose a “Fix-It First” program to put people to work as soon as possible on our most urgent repairs, like the nearly 70,000 structurally deficient bridges across the country.

Is that deja vu you’re experiencing? Yes, it is. “Fix-It First” used to have another name – “Shovel-Ready Jobs.” It was shovel-ready jobs that were supposed to seriously reduce the unemployment rate. Why else spend all that money? Yet, even President Obama noted that those jobs were not as shovel-ready as he expected. Should America believe him now because he gave the same idea a new name?

The most glaring case of amnesia came as he talked about protecting Americans overseas:

As long as I’m commander-in-chief, we will do whatever we must to protect those who serve their country abroad, and we will maintain the best military the world has ever known.

Some one should check that Mr. Obama hasn’t taken a fall like Hillary. How can he say this with a straight face? As Guy Benson of TownHall.com put it, it’s simply “astounding:”

Just six months ago, our diplomats in Benghazi were attacked and murdered by terrorists on 9/11.  The battle at two US compounds lasted nearly eight hours, during which time no resources were deployed to rescue our besieged personnel.  The attack came on the heels of multiple requests for increased security in Libya (and Benghazi specifically), which were inexplicably denied.  We still do not know why they were rebuffed, nor do we know what the president was doing during the prolonged battle.  We do know that he wasn’t actively engaged in his Commander-in-chief duties while these Americans’ lives were in grave danger, and they died.  Given the slaughter at the consulate and the administration’s subsequent stonewalling, this passage in the speech was actually insulting.

Then came a retake on one of his favorite phrases, which I pointed out on Twitter: (emphasis mine)

To hit the rest of our deficit reduction target, we should do what leaders in both parties have already suggested and save hundreds of billions of dollars by getting rid of tax loopholes and deductions for the well-off and the well-connected.

The “well-off and the well-connected” is the new “millionaires and billionaires.” The implication – again! – is that they are unfairly advantaged because they know the right people. Class warfare is here to stay in Term the Second.

He’s already won re-election, he’s giving his fourth State of the Union address, and he’s still campaigning. Valerie! Eric! Michelle! Tell him its over already! Almost a month after the Inauguration, President Obama is still trying to win by dividing Americans and trashing the GOP.

Don’t look for the mainstream media to further expose this selective deja vu. They will focus on what’s really important; Sen. Marco Rubio’s sip of water. Seems they are in perpetual campaign mode as well. Selective amnesia strikes again!

The Article In Which The Tea Party Accepts Karl Rove’s Challenge To A Duel

This article was originally posted on TownHall.com:

When Karl Rove, the defacto Capo of the Republican establishment intelligentsia, took aim at the grassroots activists (the Tea Party), offering them up like Issac for sacrifice to the mainstream media and independent voters, he surely doesn’t expect them to prostrate themselves at the Altar of Rove.

The Tea Party is ready to do battle. But before we count off our paces, perhaps Mr. Rove would like to rethink his challenge to a duel.

Rove’s thesis – that the GOP has been held hostage by the Tea Party, which picks candidates that can’t win, thereby sabotaging and embarrassing Republicans – is a lie on its face. It’s not a half-truth or an exaggeration. It’s a lie. Karl Rove Lies.

Ted Cruz, Pat Toomey, Mike Lee, Marco Rubio, Allen West – all had Tea Party backing.

Certainly Sen. Cruz is a solid Republican, with his enticement of Illinois business owners to move to Texas and his exquisite dress-down of Sen. Chuck Hagel during his Senate confirmation hearing. Sen. Lee is a star. Sen. Rubio has some worried regarding immigration reform, but perhaps a very public face needs to at least discuss the very important issues. Rubio seems interested in solving the problem, as opposed to President Obama, who seems interested only in taking credit for solving the problem.

Doesn’t Mr. Rove want a Republican who is willing to attempt to be a leader?

Yes, Rep. West lost his re-election bid in 2012 to the racist Patrick Murphy. (When you make a TV commercial that shows a black man, West, punching a white woman in the face, you’re a racist. I didn’t make the rules, Chris Matthews did. Now live with it, racist Democrats!) While I strongly disagree with his vote on NDAA, West was largely good for the GOP.

Is Karl Rove saying that the GOP is better off without Tea Party favorite West? The Florida GOP thought so, as they worked hard to change district lines to make it harder for West to run. According to Javier Manjarres at Shark-Tank.net, at the time:

West’s congressional district inexplicably sheds the most Republican electoral support, in comparison  to all other incumbent Republican and Democrat Congressman. A few weeks back we quoted an unnamed legislator saying that, “Allen West was screwed”, a statement which was originally made about made five months before the proposed maps were made public, leading insiders to believe that the fix was in against Allen West. But in light of (Florida House Speaker Will) Weatherford’s comment, it is increasingly clear that this is a fait accompli.

Michelle Malkin noted that Rove disingenuously lumps very different Tea Party candidates together, as the collective bane of the Party:

Rove and his Tea Party-bashing minions will point to the losses of Christine O’Donnell, Todd Akin, Richard Mourdock, Sharron Angle, Ken Buck, and others as justification to tighten his grip on the party in the role of Chief Decider. But those are all very disparate cases. It is ridiculous, for example, to continue smearing and lumping Mourdock (a bona fide, grass-roots candidate and fantastic State Treasurer whose sin was to honestly state his views on life) with establishment incumbent Republican Akin (whose indefensible Magical Uterus Meme idiocy cost the GOP a winnable Senate seat).

Mourdock made a comment based on his views on the sanctity of life. Rather than an attempt to explain Murdock’s statement, and beat back the MSM vultures, Rove went invisible. Obviously, winning the Senate means less to Rove than taking credit for the win…or so it seems.

One other point on Mourdock. The Tea Party support for Mourdock was based on his fiscal beliefs, not his views on abortion. His politically misguided, if heartfelt, comment, coming as it did on the heels of Aikin’s asinine remarks, proved to be his undoing. It had nothing to do with the Tea Party. To say otherwise is a lie. Mr. Rove is lying a lot these days.

Since leaving the White House, Mr. Rove hasn’t met with much success. He’s raised incredible sums of money, but he hasn’t put his money behind the right candidates. Rove’s candidates don’t win. Rove spent $127 million on TV spots for Mitt Romney. He lost 10 of 12 Senate races, and four of nine House races.His record in 2012 is 7-15.

He’s the Charlotte Bobcats of politics.

The Tea Party has taken its lumps, some well-earned. (Note to Tea Party activists: Don’t get off message. Ever.) But once again, Rove has underestimated the determination of the grassroots. Especially after the rigging of Rule 12 at the RNC convention, the grassroots will not shrink from his challenge.

Before Mr. Rove goes any further down this particular path, he might want to consider the areas of agreement between Tea Party and “establishment” Republicans. He might want to consider the need for committed activists who will walk the precincts, staff Get Out The Vote efforts and keep the GOP competitive with Progressives, who are mastering grassroots activism. (Do we need another repeat of ORCA? Do we, Karl?)

If Rove were a tactician, he would embrace the Tea Party based on its values, which were the values of Reagan, and not too long ago, Republicans. Once upon a time, Tea Party values – minus the racism – were Democrat values.

I implore Karl Rove to reconsider this misguided move, and Republicans to refrain from donating to his 527 and its new “Not Tea Party” spinoff. (Seriously donors, with a record like his, can you trust him with your money? Email me. Let’s talk.) But he had better decide soon. The Tea Party is locked and loaded.

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What Is With Illinois?

Here is my latest. This was originally posted onTownHall.com:

Living in California, it is difficult to find fault with other states. California has 12% of the US population, but over 30% of the nation’s welfare recipients. California recently voted to increase the tax burden – actually, some non-tax paying Californians decided to raise taxes on other tax paying Californians – on both individuals and corporations. California is the land of job killing Cap And Trade. It is the land of corruption, so ingrained it’s generational, political and moral graf.

Illinois is closing in fast.

Standard & Poors recently lowered Illinois’ credit rating from A to A-, which puts it in a tie with California as the lowest-rated state. Illinois’ pension obligations are massive, and only 39% funded. The state has $97 billion in unfunded mandates, with $17 million added every day.

According to Bloomberg News, Illinois owes an additional $9 billion to creditors. A planned sale of $500 million in general obligation securities (bonds) may not help their credit woes. Moody’s is considering a credit downgrade as well.

Add to this Illinois raising their personal income tax rate to 5%, which was voted on in 2011. The tax hike is scheduled to sunset in 2015, returning to 3%. Anyone taking odds on whether those tax increases are extended? Anyone? Bueller?

Despite their economic problems, Illinois officials still find ways to fleece the citizens all they can. Lottery official Mike Jones took an all expenses paid trip to London to partake in a conference to talk about ways to market the lottery more effectively. Jones, according to sources, has taken a few other trips as well:

According to Jones’ travel vouchers obtained by Illinois Review, in a little over a year, Mr. Jones has traveled to Washington, DC (twice), San Francisco, London, Rome, Ireland, Atlanta, Montreal, Las Vegas (twice) and Barcelona. Nice work if you can get it….We have no doubt Mr. Jones conducted some business while away on the taxpayers’ dime, but the troubling words “personal time” keep popping up on his travel vouchers while he was in places such as London and Rome.

Aside from their economic woes come their cultural failings. Until a Court forced its hand, Illinois was the only state in the Union that did not allow for the concealed carry of firearms with a CCW permit. It took a recent decision by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals to change that stance. Ruling that Illinois can not deny residents an opportunity for a CCW license, the Court questioned the state’s rationale:

Illinois had to provide us with more than merely a rational basis for believing that its uniquely sweeping ban is justified by an increase in public safety. It has failed to meet this burden.

A law for obtaining a CCW has to be in place by June of 2013 (180 days after the December, 2012 decision.) No doubt, the state’s elected officials will do everything in their power to make the process of obtaining a CCW – allowing residents to exercise their 2nd Amendment rights – as complex and convoluted as possible.

Take a look at Illinois’ elected officials, who blatantly exploit their positions. Mayor Rahm Emanuel, former henchman to President Obama, recently sent a letter to major bank officials asking them to stop providing lines of credit to gun manufacturers. Illinois has a series of gun manufacturers in the state, including Armalite.

According to web sources, Armalite employees 50-200 people, and has sales of over $13 million per year. How long will they stay, given elected officials want to employ economic tyranny against them? The same kind of economic tyranny that Bank of America attempted on American Spirit Arms when they stopped providing their merchant services, or in April 2012, when they ended their business relationship with McMillian Firearms Manufacturing.

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) said that gun control is not a “constitutional issue.” Speaking at California Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein’s press conference on annihilating the 2nd Amendment (wait…it wasn’t about annihilating the 2nd Amendment? Really?) he stated:

This just isn’t a matter of an issue of the Constitution, it’s an issue of conscience, an issue of conscience

It was former Rep. Phil Hare (D-IL 17) who, when asked in 2010 about Obamacare and its potential constitutionality, said, “I don’t worry about the Constitution on this.” Responding that the Supreme Court can rule on its consitutionality is one thing. Not worrying about the Constitution is something horrifically different, considering that every elected official takes an oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States.

And consider President Obama himself, a product of the Chicago way. The US Court of Appeals ruled his ploy to expand recess powers was unconstitutional. On the debt limit, he (with support from perennial lapdog Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV)) sought ways to raise the limit without Congress. He has discussed about how he would like to “go it alone” on immigration reform, lamenting that it’s not the way our “messy” democracy work. Translation: The Constitution is getting in the way.

The Land of Lincoln is dominated by elected officials of personal ambition, duplicitous morals and constitution-shredding agendas. Everyday, another story emerges that shamefully pushes Illinois further down the food chain, joining California on the sea floor.