Saturday, July 16, 2011

Lightbulbs and our freedom; 55% don't want higher taxes now; Obama claims 80% of us want higher taxes; "Elect me because you are too dumb to understand how smart I am"; Obama claims of job-killing tax cuts!; Liberal group refuses to donate or volunteer for Obama; Bin Laden targeted Obama, Petraeus and sporting event for this 9/11; Krauthammer wants Obama to name one cut; Conservative organization trying to undo new CA law on teaching alternative lifestyles in schools; The UK Telegraph skewers our President; Obama administration negotiates with credit raters; Cyberwarfare at Pentagon

Redstate reports: The issue has taken hold in the press as to be about light bulbs, which of course reasonable people know is an unfair characterization of a complicated issue.  The real issue is obviously freedom.  Freedom to make choices, no matter how insignificant they may seem.  The light bulb situation is an example of that debate, but I’m starting to believe it is becoming a distraction.  You don’t even have to travel far from the realm of light bulbs to see that our overly regulated lives are about to be far more restricted and the impact will be devestating.
Recently, the EPA released it’s Clean Air Transit Rule (CATR) under the name “The Cross Air Pollution Rule.”  This essentially requires states that have power plants to redue emissions they produce which are carried downwind to neighboring states.  CATR is widely expected to result in massive closures or temporary shutdowns of electric plants.
Rasmussen poll: As the Beltway politicians try to figure out how they will raise the debt ceiling and for how long, most voters oppose including tax hikes in the deal.
Just 34% think a tax hike should be included in any legislation to raise the debt ceiling. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 55% disagree and say it should not. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
The Hill reports: Meanwhile, as reported by The Hill: President Obama on Friday kept up the pressure on Republicans to agree to revenue increases in a deal to raise the debt ceiling, claiming 80 percent of the public supports Democrats' demand for tax increases.
"The American people are sold," Obama said. "The problem is members of Congress are dug in ideologically."
Throughout the press conference, Obama blasted Republicans for ignoring what he said is the will of the American people by rejecting tax increases that would balance out spending cuts in a debt package. "I hope [Republicans are] not just listening to lobbyists and special interests ... I hope they're listening to the American people as well," Obama said, citing "poll after poll" showing Republican voters, as well as Democrats, believe in taking "a balanced approach" — including both increased revenues and spending cuts in a plan to cut the deficit.  [Okay - this made me laugh.  First of all President Obama is claiming something which is entirely untrue.  Then he argues for the Republicans to do what he refused to do - listen to the people - 55% of whom do not agree with his plan.  And he must have forgotten that when 70-some% of Americans in no way wanted his Obamacare, he thumbed his nose at the citizens and bullied and bribed his way to victory.  He sure does not lack in gall.]
“We asked the president to lead, we asked him to put forward a plan, not a speech — a real plan — and he hasn’t. We will,” Speaker John Boehner said (R-Ohio) before Obama’s press conference. "If they show me a serious plan, I'm ready to move, even if it requires some tough sacrifices on my part," Obama said.  [Here is the problem: it is HE who refuses to show a real plan to us.  He declares that the Republicans are ideologically entrenched to their plan without even understanding  that he also is entrenched.]
The NY Post weighs in with: Michael Goodwin writes about Obama: In answering a question about a poll showing that two-thirds of voters don't want the debt ceiling raised, he blew off 70 million Americans by saying they aren't paying attention.
There's a novel campaign theme: Elect me because you're too dumb to understand how smart I am.
Harry Truman ran against a "Do-Nothing" Congress. Obama is running against a "Know-Nothing" nation.
He can never be wrong. You always are, unless you agree with him.
That's the story of his presidency. That's who he is.
Human Events writes: President Obama’s press conference today can be summed up with one phrase: job-killing tax cuts.
Yes, he really said that.  The architect of double-digit unemployment, whose crony capitalist pals at companies like Solyndra and Cisco are shedding jobs like mad, thinks letting the private sector keep more of its own money will somehow kill jobs.
It was an epic blunder, the kind of sound bite that becomes part of a President’s immortal legacy.  He looked flustered and desperate when he said it.  He’s grasping at any possible reason to grab more cash and more power, and this is the best he could do while trying to think on his feet.  As always, Obama flatly refused to “get into specifics,” but felt free to criticize the “Cut, Cap, and Balance” pledge on the basis of “the numbers.”  His new rhetorical tactic is pretending that Paul Ryan’s “Path to Prosperity” budget, which passed the House with almost unanimous Republican support, does not exist, but he’ll carefully review a real budget proposal when he sees one.  It’s amazing that any of the political people who work for him signed off on this tactic.  It makes him look ridiculous.As always, Obama flatly refused to “get into specifics,” but felt free to criticize the “Cut, Cap, and Balance” pledge on the basis of “the numbers.”  His new rhetorical tactic is pretending that Paul Ryan’s “Path to Prosperity” budget, which passed the House with almost unanimous Republican support, does not exist, but he’ll carefully review a real budget proposal when he sees one.  It’s amazing that any of the political people who work for him signed off on this tactic.  It makes him look ridiculous.
The AP reports: About a dozen people representing the Progressive Change Campaign Committee delivered what they said were 200,000 pledges from people who will refuse to donate or volunteer for Obama's re-election campaign if he cuts the entitlement programs.  "It's not a question of who they're going to support for president, they're going to vote for Barack Obama. It's a question of where their time and money is going to go," spokesman T. Neil Sroka said.
ABC News reports: U.S. officials say that Osama Bin Laden wanted to assemble a team to attack America on the tenth anniversary of 9/11, and had a hit list that included President Obama, General David Petraeus and a major U.S. sporting event. 
Charles Krauthammer on Friday marvelously demonstrated just how in the pockets of Barack Obama America's news media are.
After claiming on PBS's "Inside Washington" that we now have a "completely compliant, pliant, supine press accepting every leak out of the White House," he silenced the entire panel by asking them to name one specific cut to entitlements the President has proposed (video follows with transcript and commentary):
I’ve heard it again and again that the President’s prepared to do, to make cuts in entitlements. Name me one.
For weeks the media have been telling Americans the President's big budget plan offered cuts in entitlements, but none of them can actually name what those cuts are.
The San Francisco Chronicle reports: A socially conservative organization based in Sacramento filed documents Friday afternoon to start a voter referendum on a controversial law that adds the contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans to school instruction.
[How is this debt ceiling issue playing in London?  This is from the UK Telegraph, proving that our President has failed to be the hero to the world]: The audacity of Barack Obama’s press conference this morning on the budget talks was simply breathtaking. There is something monumentally surreal about the head in the sand approach being taken towards the debt crisis by the gilded elites in 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. In fact the president and his advisers are giving every impression that they sit atop an out of touch, decaying Ancien RĂ©gime, oozing elitist contempt for public opinion and the views of ordinary American people. President Obama has never appeared more distant from the US electorate than he has today, which is probably why just 16 percent of Americans are satisfied with the direction their country is taking, according to Gallup.
The president made the astonishing claim today that a staggering 80 percent of Americans want tax increases as part of any approach dealing with the debt ceiling issue, declaring: “The American people are sold. The problem is members of Congress are dug in ideologically.”
However, as a major poll published just yesterday by Rasmussen shows, this assertion is complete bunkIt turns out we don’t have to do anything radical to solve this problem. Contrary to what some folks say, we’re not Greece, we’re not Portugal. It turns out that our problem is we cut taxes without paying for them over the last decade. We ended up instituting new programs, like a prescription drug program for seniors that was not paid for. We fought two wars, we didn’t pay for them. We had a bad recession that required a Recovery Act and stimulus spending and helping states, accumulated, and there’s interest on top of that… They require us to make some modest adjustments to get our house in order.
The Washington Post reports: The Obama administration has mounted an intense behind-the-scenes campaign to keep the nation’s major credit rating companies from issuing threats that they might downgrade the United States over the swelling size of the federal debt.
Senior administration officials have been trying for months to persuade analysts at the credit rating companies — all part of publicly traded firms — that political leaders in Washington can come to an agreement to tame the debt.
Investors Business Daily writes: The Pentagon has disclosed perhaps the largest theft of sensitive data by an unnamed foreign government. The threat to our electronic infrastructure is real, growing and as dangerous as a North Korean missile.
In outlining America's cyberwarfare strategy last Thursday at the National Defense University, Deputy Secretary of Defense William Lynn disclosed that 24,000 sensitive files containing Pentagon data at a defense company were accessed in a cyberattack in March, likely by a foreign government.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Petulant Obama storms out; Moody's doesn't like McConnell's plan; Another vote on lightbulbs today; Government accidenatlly turns over classified document to ACLU; Pelosi "almost too busy" for debt limit meetings; Congressman Walsh tells Obama to quit lying; Krauthammer on Obama's debt ceiling; Regulation w/o Congressional approval

RedState opines: The President engaged in off Broadway theatrics trying to scare the Republicans into folding on debt ceiling negotiations. Playing the role of Hollywood President, not the real President, the President said he didn’t care if this brought down his Presidency and he would not yield. He then dared Eric Cantor to call his bluff.
Mr. Speaker, this is a man giving away the game. This is the poker player smiling and shifting in his seat trying to fake you into thinking he has an awesome hand. The dramatics are a Hollywood production — a facade hiding a bitter reality for Barack Obama.
You see Mr. Speaker, we know Barack Obama is thin skinned and we know he is mindful of his legacy. This is why Barack Obama stormed out of a meeting with Republicans last night when they confronted him with the fact that his supposed spending cuts are accounting gimmicks.
Barack Obama, for the sake of his legacy, cannot afford to be the President under whom America’s credit tanks and under whom America defaults on its debts.  History will not blame Congress. History will blame Barack Obama for not doing what it takes to lead and for failing to do what it takes, no matter the cost, to keep the U.S. solvent.
RedState writes: Moody’s Investor Services is sending out a pretty clear rejection of Mitch McConnell’s “Pontius Pilate Pass the Buck Act of 2011.”
Republicans and Democrats who are spinning it in favor of folding like a cheap suit and just raising the debt ceiling should pay attention.
According to Moody’s,
“the outlook assigned at that time to the government bond rating would very likely be changed to negative at the conclusion of the review unless substantial and credible agreement is achieved on a budget that includes long-term deficit reduction. To retain a stable outlook, such an agreement should include a deficit trajectory that leads to stabilization and then decline in the ratios of federal government debt to GDP and debt to revenue beginning within the next few years.”
That is directly opposite of the McConnell plan, which would let President Obama raise the debt ceiling by $2 trillion automatically over the next year.

The Hill reports: The House appears likely on Friday to accept an amendment to the 2012 Energy and Water Appropriations Act that would deny funding for the implementation of funds to implement a 2007 law that Republicans say will ban incandescent light bulbs.
The House on Tuesday rejected a bill to repeal parts of the 2007 law that set bulb efficiency standards. However, a majority of members favored the bill by a 233-193 vote, and the only reason it failed is because a two-thirds majority was needed.
On Thursday evening, Rep. Michael Burgess (R-Texas) proposed an amendment to the energy and water spending bill that would prohibit funds in the bill for use in enforcing the 2007 law.
"The federal government has no right to tell me or any other citizen what type of light bulb to use at home," Burgess said. "It is our right to choose."
The Washington Post writes: The U.S. government said it accidentally turned over a classified document about how it determines who are the most dangerous detainees in Afghanistan to the American Civil Liberties Union, and wants a federal judge to order the group to return it and not release it to the public, according to court papers.
CNS News reports: House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said she is “almost too busy” to continue listening to what is going on in the debt limit meetings at the White House with congressional leaders.
(CBS) – North suburban Republican Congressman Joe Walsh has a new YouTube video on his website – where he tells President Barack Obama to “quit lying” about the impact of not raising the national debt ceiling by Aug. 2.
In a nearly three-minute video released Wednesday, Walsh says, “President Obama, quit lying.” He claims there is plenty of money to pay federal debts and cover the costs of Social Security benefits, even if the debt ceiling isn’t raised by the deadline.  “Have you no shame, sir?” Walsh asks in the video, telling Obama to “show some leadership for once.”
The Washington Post writes: Charles Krauthammer writes: President Obama is demanding a big long-term budget deal. He won’t sign anything less, he warns, asking, “If not now, when?”
How about last December, when he ignored his own debt commission’s recommendations? How about February, when he presented a budget that increases debt by $10 trillion over the next decade? How about April, when he sought a debt-ceiling increase with zero debt reduction attached?
Say it, Mr. President. Give us one single structural change in entitlements. In public.
American Thinker opines: Currently there are literally hundreds of government agencies that have the power to "regulate" almost any aspect of our lives, from the food we ingest to the way we educate our children.  Those agencies have created nearly 200,000 pages of regulations that have the power to deprive the citizens of property and liberty.  Yet these regulations are not called law because laws, of course, have to be passed by Congress.  Regulations are agreed upon by a small group of regulators that are out of the reach of the election process.  All of this happens despite the fact that there is no constitutional basis for Congress being able to delegate the authority to make laws to a third party and the founders probably never conceived they would try to do such a thing.  However these agencies have been passing "regulations" in direct violation of the Constitution for decades.  For example, apparently Congress cannot pass laws to restrict the Second Amendment but the ATF can pass regulations that have the same effect.
One agency of the federal government in particular has been in direct violation of the Constitution for its entire existence.  The IRS has the power to force citizens to incriminate themselves, violating the Fifth Amendment, and prosecutes trials under the premise that taxpayers are guilty until proven innocent, violating the Sixth Amendment.  Finally the IRS can seize property and businesses and sell the property and business without a court order, again violating the Fifth Amendment.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Michigan Medicaid births at 47%; Omaha schools spend $130,000 for manuals on cultural sensitivity; President doesn't like shouted questions, bars tv and print reporters from presser; Woman arrested when saving her 6 yr. old daughter from TSA patdown; Wheelchair-bound duo "search raped"; Obama threatens Social Security payments; Skyrocketing public employee costs causing financial ruin; Video of Justice official saying "the President has directed us" [on Project Gunrunner]; "Don't call my bluff", says Obama; Project Gunrunner in Florida?

In the state of Michigan, about 47% of all births are paid for by taxpayers, via Medicaid!  Let us count the things which are wrong with this picture...................
The Omaha World Herald reports: The Omaha Public Schools used more than $130,000 in federal stimulus dollars to buy each teacher, administrator and staff member a manual on how to become more culturally sensitive.
The book by Virginia education consultants could raise some eyebrows with its viewpoints.
The authors assert that American government and institutions create advantages that “channel wealth and power to white people,” that color-blindness will not end racism and that educators should “take action for social justice.”
The book says that teachers should acknowledge historical systemic oppression in schools, including racism, sexism, homophobia and “ableism,” defined by the authors as discrimination or prejudice against people with disabilities.
Politico reports: When asked today why TV crews and print reporters were barred from the pool covering the White House meeting with congressional leaders on the deficit, Carney responded by pointing out that the administration has held two press conferences in the past two weeks and allowed TV cameras into the spray earlier this week.
"People shouted questions at him," Carney said. He then added, "The purpose of the meeting is not to create a circus, but to negotiate, so today we're doing stills only."
The White House Correspondents’ Association has protested exclusion of print and TV from pools — and several reporters in the briefing room took Carney’s comment as an annoyed expression of presidential displeasure with shouted questions.
“It's an absurd reason to say that because we asked questions you're not going to allow cameras in there. He's capable of ignoring our questions. He does it all the time,” said Chip Reid of CBS.
The Tennessean reports: A 41-year-old Clarksville woman was arrested after Nashville airport authorities say she was belligerent and verbally abusive to security officers, refusing for her daughter to be patted down at a security checkpoint.
Andrea Fornella Abbott yelled and swore at Transportation Security Administration agents Saturday afternoon at Nashville International Airport, saying she did not want her daughter to be “touched inappropriately or have her “crotch grabbed,” a police report states.
After the woman refused to calm down, airport police said, she was charged with disorderly conduct and taken to jail. She has been released on bond.
WTSP News reports: "It was extremely thorough, almost a violation, "says Jason Steitler as he describes how a TSA official searched him at the Greater Rochester International Airport July 6th. Steitler's disability requires he uses a wheelchair.
"They did the hair then did the neck. Then they had me do a pushup in my chair, then got down into my inner thigh around my back side. It's the most thorough search [I've] had done in  my life," says Steitler.
Steitler and his wife, Jennifer, were heading home to New Port Richey that morning. She too is in a wheel chair and was searched by a TSA official.
"She's been using the phrase 'search raped' because it was that thorough. She says it was nearly to her crotch," says Steitler
The Washington Examiner writes: So when Obama threatens not to pay Social Security checks on time, the proper response of congressional Republicans should be to pass emergency legislation directing the Secretary of the Treasury to pay interest on the national debt, Social Security and Medicare, active-duty members of the military and government bond-holders before any other government bills are paid.
Of course, the Senate Democratic majority won't go along with this and even if it did, Obama would veto such legislation if it reached his desk. But that's exactly the point - Make congressional Democrats and Obama explicitly choose not to pay Social Security, et. al. so that the responsibility for that decision is clear.
Congressional GOPers have got to rediscover the power of Congress and be willing to use it if they are ever to start winning real and enduring victories against Big Government.
Business Insider reports: Public employee costs account for a large share of municipal budget woes. While worker compensation accounts for just 30% of state spending, personnel costs tends to eat up between 70% and 80% of local government funds.
Skyrocketing employee costs — the result of overly generous union contracts, an aging workforce, and bad pension investments — are now pushing several municipalities to the brink of fiscal ruin. Without union concessions or substantial reform, these cities will edge closer to insolvency while residents pay higher taxes for deteriorating public services.

Here's a look at 14 cities where the problem is particularly acute: NYC, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Pittsburgh, North Las Vegas, San Jose, CA, Providence Rhode Island, New Haven, Connecticut, Newark, NJ, Stockton, CA, Colorado Springs, Costa Mesa, CA, and Central Falls, Rhode Island.

Fast And Furious Scandal: A Watergate For Obama?

  Border: A 2-year-old video shows a high Justice official saying "the president has directed us," including the attorney general, to speed up Project Gunrunner and the offshoot that got a border agent killed.  "The president has directed us to take action to fight these cartels," Ogden begins, "and Attorney General Holder and I are taking several new and aggressive steps as part of the administration's comprehensive plan."
The UK Daily Mail writes: Barack Obama is said to have come to blows with House Majority Leader Eric Cantor on the fifth straight day of debt talks.
The 'tough' and 'testy' meeting got ugly quickly, according to sources who said Mr Cantor clashed with the President after repeatedly pushing for a short-term resolution to the crisis.
According to Mr Cantor the President said: 'Eric, don't call my bluff,' before adding: 'Would Ronald Reagan be sitting here? I've reached my limit. This may bring my presidency down, but I will not yield on this.
'This process is confirming what the American people think is the worst about Washington: that everyone is more interested in posturing, political positioning, and protecting their base, than in resolving real problems,' Mr Obama added.
Mr Obama then 'abruptly' walked off, according to Mr Cantor. 'I know why he lost his temper. He's frustrated. We're all frustrated,' the Virginia Republican said.
The Daily Caller reports: Recent reports have suggested that Project Gunrunner may not have been limited to weapons trafficking to Mexico and that similar programs included the possible trafficking of arms to criminal gangs in Honduras with the knowledge of the ATF’s Tampa Field Division and the Department of Justice’s Middle District of Florida through an operation known as ‘Operation Castaway,’” the letter read.
Bilrakis added that, as a member of the House Committees on Homeland Security and Foreign Affairs, he finds it “troubling” that the U.S. government would “willfully allow weapons to be acquired by dangerous criminal and drug trafficking organizations in direct contravention to our strategic and national interests.”

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Boehner leaves table; CA Governor tells conservatives they can go live in AZ; Unions sour on Democrats; A doctor's letter to our President; Obama's huge federal debt; Unruly passenger is possible terrorist?; Obama's lied again; Mitch McConnell's plan on debt ceiling; Obama threatens loss of SS checks; House fails to repeal incandescent light bulb ban; Obama being probed on fundraising for 2012

Boehner left the table because he and the Republicans in Congress actually, factually believe raising taxes would be a bad idea. President Obama says the taxes he wants to raise are off a ways in 2013 or 2014. But Republicans understand that businesses and employers knowing their profits will fall in a few years will start making cuts today to preserve their net profits tomorrow. It’d be bad for the economy.
The American people will not accept, and the House cannot pass, a bill that raises taxes on job creators. The House can only pass a debt limit bill that includes spending cuts larger than the hike in the debt limit as well as real restraints on future spending. My colleagues and I feel we should enact a balanced budget amendment to keep the federal government from spending us into the same situation again. I think we also need real reductions in spending right now and spending caps to ensure that progress we make is not undone in the future… A bill that doesn’t meet these tests can’t pass the House of Representatives.

Redstate reports: So, a member of the Riverside County Board of Supervisors – Jeff Stone, a Republican – has proposed splitting the state of California, with San Diego and the largely rural, Republican-leaning south east of the state becoming “South California,” and LA remaining with the liberal coast and northern part of the stateBut what’s really interesting here isn’t a proposal by one member of the board of one county, but rather the response by a spokesman for Governor Jerry Brown:
“If you want to live in a Republican state with very conservative right-wing laws, then there’s a place called Arizona,” [Governor] Brown spokesman Gil Duran said.
Redstate reports: What’s the purpose of buying a Democrat if they just don’t deliver the goods? That’s been union bosses’ ham-fisted message to Democrats for a couple of months now: If Democrats don’t start delivering on what union bosses expect, union bosses will pull their funds.
Well, it appears that union bosses are making good on their threats–or, like sending a dead fish, they’re putting the message out that they mean business (before 2012 rolls around and they open up the spigots again).
According to the Center for Responsive Politics union bosses haven’t been as giving as they have been in the past.
Dear Mr. President:
During my shift in the Emergency Room last night, I had the pleasure of evaluating a patient whose smile revealed an expensive shiny gold tooth, whose body was adorned with a wide assortment of elaborate and costly tattoos, who wore a very expensive brand of tennis shoes and who chatted on a new cellular telephone equipped with a popular R&B ring tone. While glancing over her patient chart, I happened to notice that her payer status was listed as "Medicaid"! During my examination of her, the patient informed me that she smokes more than one costly pack of cigarettes every day and somehow still has money to buy pretzels and beer.

And, you and our Congress expect me to pay for this woman's health care?
I contend that our nation's "health care crisis" is not the result of a shortage of quality hospitals, doctors or nurses. Rather, it is the result of a "crisis of culture", a culture in which it is perfectly acceptable to spend money on luxuries and vices while refusing to take care of one's self or, heaven forbid, purchase health insurance. It is a culture based on the irresponsible credo that "I can do whatever I want to because someone else will always take care of me".
Once you fix this "culture crisis" that rewards irresponsibility and dependency, you'll be amazed at how quickly our nation's health care difficulties will disappear.
STARNER JONES, MD -  Check it out for yourself at
  • H.R. 872, the Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act
  • H.R. 910, the Energy Tax Prevention Act
  • H.J.Res. 37, a Resolution of disapproval regarding the FCC’s regulation of the Internet and broadband industry practices
  • H.R. 1249, the America Invents Act
  • H.R. 1230, Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act
  • H.R. 1229, Putting the Gulf of Mexico Back to Work Act
  • H.R. 1231, Reversing President Obama’s Offshore Moratorium Act
  • H.R. 2021, the Jobs and Energy Permitting Act
  • H.Con.Res. 34, a Resolution establishing the budget for the United States government for fiscal year 2012 and setting forth appropriate budgetary levels for fiscal years 2013 through 2011
Buck Buck

Member of Congress
 Buck McKeon, Representative
An unruly passenger who threatened flight attendants after he made several trips to the bathroom and stayed for long periods of time caused the plane to be redirected and was later arrested. The most fascinating part of the story is how the media reported it — especially after seeing the suspects name.
Fox News reports:
According to the FBI, Alramakh went into the plane’s bathroom and used an electronic device while the plane was taxiing in Chicago. He allegedly refused to follow the flight attendant’s directives that he immediately turn off the device and return to his seat, but eventually returned to his seat…
At some point later in the flight, Alramakh got up a third time and approached a flight attendant in a “belligerent, confrontational manner,” the FBI said.
“Alramakh was speaking in a loud tone of voice, using profanity, with his face inches from the flight attendant’s face. The flight attendant asked Alramakh to step back multiple times, but instead Alramakh shoved the flight attendant backwards against the aircraft,” the FBI said in a news release.

The Washington Examiner reports: A dozen years later, her son turned her ordeal into a campaign pitch for national health care. But the story Obama told, Scott writes, was "abbreviated" -- the abbreviation was to leave out the fact that Ann Dunham had health insurance that paid for her treatment. "Though he often suggested that she was denied health coverage because of a pre-existing condition," Scott writes, "it appears from her correspondence that she was only denied disability coverage."
That's a different story altogether. One the president never told.
That is the time during which Obama says his mother battled insurance companies to cover her illness. But Scott, who had access to Dunham's correspondence from the time, reveals that Dunham unquestionably had health coverage. "Ann's compensation for her job in Jakarta had included health insurance, which covered most of the costs of her medical treatment," Scott writes. "Once she was back in Hawaii, the hospital billed her insurance company directly, leaving Ann to pay only the deductible and any uncovered expenses, which, she said, came to several hundred dollars a month."
Scott writes that Dunham, who wanted to be compensated for those costs as well as for her living expenses, "filed a separate claim under her employer's disability insurance policy." It was that claim, with the insurance company CIGNA, that was denied in August 1995 because, CIGNA investigators said, Dunham's condition was known before she was covered by the policy.
Redstate reports: Mitch McConnell just concluded a press conference declaring his intentions to have the Senate Republicans engage in a historic capitulation. So fearful of being blamed for a default, McConnell is proposing a compromise that lets Barack Obama raise the debt ceiling without making any spending cuts at all.
McConnell’s idea is to make the debt ceiling automatic unless Congress, by a 2/3 vote blocks the increase. Oh yes, he put a salve on it by dressing it up in tough talk that, to quote the Wall Street Journal, “[a] ‘eal solution’ to U.S. fiscal problems isn’t possible as long as President Barack Obama remains in office.” So since no “real solution” is possible, McConnell proposes to go Pontius Pilate and wash his hands of spending, blaming Obama while doing nothing himself.
In a nutshell, the President would get to raise the debt ceiling three times in the next year at several billion bucks a pop without making any spending cuts unless two-thirds of both houses of Congress disagree. In his press conference, McConnell says he would not give the President “unilateral authority to make spending cuts on his own,” but this plan would allow the President to raise the debt ceiling pretty much automatically.
The Washington Post writes: Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell moved Tuesday to head off a potentially disastrous U.S. default by offering President Obama new authority to raise the federal debt limit without cutting government spending.
The proposal would transform the political dynamics of the debate, placing the entire burden for raising the $14.3 trillion debt limit on Obama. Republican lawmakers would be spared from voting to raise the limit and could shift their campaign for unprecedented spending cuts to the congressional appropriations process, where the risk of stalemate is shutting down the government instead of capsizing the U.S. economy. However, they would lose the approaching deadline as leverage to pursue their cost-cutting agenda.
McConnell’s proposal came as Obama warned that Social Security and disability checks could be delayed next month if the two sides fail to reach an agreement, piling fresh hardship on millions of families and putting new pressure on the sputtering recovery.
“I cannot guarantee that those checks go out on August 3rd if we haven’t resolved this issue, because there may simply not be the money in the coffers to do it,” Obama said in an interview with CBS News.

The Washington Post opines: The concept isn’t that hard to understand. 1. McConnell had enough of the phony White House talks. The White House offered a paltry $2 billion in actual, immediate cuts. 2. McConnell gave a speech to make clear that wasn’t enough and that the debt limit would be raised only with real cuts and without tax hikes. 3. McConnell could sit back and wait for default. 4. But he comes up with a mechanism to force Obama to put up cuts, send them to Congress and face “default” if the president’s cuts don't get through. 5. In the process he makes 34 Democratic senators vote over and over again on cuts. (The sound you hear in the background is the conga line at the Senate Republican Committee headquarters.)
There are no tax increases in the plan. The onus is on the president to send a request for a debt-ceiling increase and the cuts to go along with it. If he doesn’t do it or if the Congress disapproves of what he sends up (and sustains a veto) the debt ceiling remains in place. But the Senate Democrats will have the power to sustain a veto (and thereby allow phony cuts to be used to raise the debt ceiling), right? Which 34 senators exactly are going to do this? Certainly not the ones in unsafe seats with voters clamoring for real spending cuts.
(CBS News) [Proving to all Americans that our government has really failed in its duty to take our SS money, protect it, and give it back - or proving once again how easy it is to just lie in order to scare us -]WASHINGTON - It was a striking thing today to see the President of the United States say that he cannot guarantee the 27 million Social Security checks that are due to be mailed on August 3rd.
Mr. Obama: Well, this is not just a matter of Social Security checks. These are veterans' checks, these are folks on disability, and their checks. There are about 70 million checks that go out each month. 

"This debt limit increase is his problem," Rep. Boehner said. "And I think it's time for him to lead by putting his plan on the table something that the Congress can pass."

The Republican leader of the Senate Mitch McConnell fired a shot that was jarring to many who heard it.
"After years of discussions and months of negotiations, I have little question that as long as this president is in the Oval Office, a real solution is probably unattainable," Sen. McConnell said.
LA Times reports: Opponents of the federal phaseout of old-style incandescent light bulbs failed in the House on Tuesday to repeal the requirement for more efficient lighting but are expected to try again soon.  But with a 233-193 vote in favor of it, the House GOP leadership may bring it back for approval under procedures that require only a simple majority. The repeal faces dim prospects in the Democratic-controlled Senate, however.,0,746290.story

Politico writes: House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa is probing what he sees as signs of an unseemly overlap between President Barack Obama’s official and political activities.
In what could be considered the committee’s sharpest probe to date of the White House, Issa sent a letter to Obama’s top lawyer Monday evening asking for a slew of documents relating to what the California Republican termed as “an array of potentially illegal fundraising behavior.”
Issa singled out a White House meeting in March between Obama, Democratic National Committee officials and members of the business community — who were all Obama donors. The meeting was organized by the DNC.
He’s also calling into question the Obama administration’s decision to provide access to administration officials – possibly including the White House chef – to large donors.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Tyranny and tyrants - and Barack Obama; Can government mandate obese to join Weight Watchers?; Stun gun found on Jet Blue plane, and 6 yr. old boy patted down twice; Don't say it's a tax raise; Obamacare cost-cutting panel is focus of hearings; Congress sees mishandled Libya War; Maryland voters oppose state's Dream Act college tuition; Sudan credits President Bush for their freedom; Obama sells tanks to Egypt

Writing in the New England Journal of Political Science, Kris Aaron Beck and Prathibha V. Joshi discuss tyranny and tyrants in exhaustive detail in their work "On Tyranny: The Political and Economic Characteristics of the Authoritarian Regime."  According to Beck and Joshi, tyrants and tyrannies differ depending upon the political systems that they seek to dominate.  Yet, there are characteristics common to all tyrants:
#1. Consolidation of Power (page 65). 
Tyrants move quickly to centralize and consolidate power by "investing into one entity the authority to make political decisions previously found within multiple institutions."
Barack Obama is currently in the consolidation phase of his tyrannical foray.  He violates laws with impunity, forcing Congress and/or the Supreme Court to rein him in.  Obama's response to accusations of illegal activity might best be paraphrased as "You don't like it?  So sue me." 
#2. Excessive Self-Love (page 45).
The defining characteristic of all tyrants, "...excessive self-love characterizes tyrannies and tyrants above all else[.]" 
#3. They Hate the Middle Class (page 83).
"...tyrannies loathe the development of a large middle-class even though it can act as an engine of economic growth." 
A thriving middle class is dangerous for any tyrant.  With time and income to allow for certain luxuries, middle-class citizens can also become politically active.  A strong and vibrant middle class is essential for a healthy economy, but it is also a driving force for the expansion of liberty.  
#4. A Vision for the Country (page 70).
"To further their control and justify that initial oppression, tyrants offer a vision for the country that includes where they believe the country should go and how to solve its problems..." To read the entire argument go to:
As NewsBusters previously noted, ABC's "This Week" began its Independence Day weekend program disparaging the Founding Fathers as guys who didn't let women vote and allowed slavery.
What followed was a Roundtable discussion about the Constitution which got quite interesting when the host brought up ObamaCare and George Will marvelously asked the group, "Does Congress have the constitutional power to require obese people to sign up for Weight Watchers? If not, why not?" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
MICHAEL ERIC DYSON, GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY: Well, the beauty of that is, the not knowing -- and we can predict that Rick would say that because he's saying that's the color of the curtain. The basic foundation is set.
WILL: Is that a yes, Congress does have the power to mandate?
DYSON: It's open. If they decide that they will, they will have the power to do so.
An FBI spokesman said Monday that it does not appear a stun gun found aboard a JetBlue plane that landed late Friday in Newark was intended to be used in an attack.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ writes: Call it eliminating an unfair break, or removing an unjust loophole, or even "taking a balanced approach." Just don't call it raising taxes.
As they work toward a must-do deal with Republicans on paring trillions from the deficit in order to raise the nation's debt limit, President Barack Obama and Democrats are saying almost anything to avoid the politically toxic pronouncement that they want to increase taxes.
The Hill writes: House Republicans will make a concerted push next week to shift the healthcare focus back on to President Obama and congressional Democrats — specifically by focusing on a cost-cutting panel in the healthcare law that the GOP charges will “ration” care.

The renewed attacks on the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) will play out in two hearings: first Tuesday in the House Budget Committee, followed by a four-panel marathon the next day in the Energy and Commerce Health subcommittee.
The Washington Times reports: Nearly everyone in Congress says President Obama has mishandled the war in Libya, but that’s as far as the consensus goes — members of the Senate and, in particular, the House have struggled to find unity on ways to rein in his actions.
In the lower chamber, lawmakers have voted on at least three options: endorse the war, limit it to a true supporting role for NATO or end it outright. None has gained a majority.
The Washington Times reports: Maryland elections officials have approved more than 87,000 signatures in opposition to the state’s Dream Act, according to numbers released Monday by the state Board of Elections.
As of Monday afternoon, state officials had verified 87,073 voter signatures submitted by petitioners in an effort to force a November 2012 referendum on the law, which would allow many college-aged illegal immigrants to pay in-state tuition rates.
Investors reports: As South Sudan joyfully celebrated its independence from Sudan, President Obama hailed it as the fruit of partnership, togetherness, hope and unity. South Sudanese, however, hailed President Bush.
Proudly wearing the black cowboy hat given to him by President Bush, South Sudan's new president, Salva Kiir Mayardit, couldn't have made a stronger statement about who made his country's independence possible after 50 years of warfare.
"It was George Bush and the Christian fundamentalists who heard the cry of South Sudan," affirmed a South Sudanese man quoted by the Los Angeles Times. But to hear the White House — in its official recognition of the new republic, as well as on the White House blog and in an op-ed published earlier this year, President Bush had nothing to do with this.
American Thinker writes: This past week, the Obama administration informed Congress that it had approved the sale of 125 M1A1 Abrams Tanks to the government of Egypt. The question of just who is running the government of Egypt was apparently insignificant to the decision-makers. And this goes to the heart of the problem, as this administration continually makes irrational and dangerous foreign policy decisions that may not only have a dramatic affect on the Mideast and surrounding areas, but that will likely impact U.S. interests across the globe.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Santander returns call centers to UK; Repeat of easy-lending cycle by Justice Dept.; Brits can't fire on Taliban planting roadside bombs, as it is not a immedicate threat; Voluntary extra payments to Treasury Dept.; Welfare recipients live large in Fairfax, VA; Obama's possible raise of debt ceiling w/o Congress stirs talk of impeachment; Obama backs down; World Net Daily subpoenas birth certificate info from Hawaii; Democrat plans for debt-reduction; More proof of Holder's perjury; Reform groups call for Maxin Waters ethics investigation to resume; Small businesses not ready to hire

The UK Daily Mail reports: A major bank has brought all its call centres back to the UK from India to try to restore its reputation with customers.
Santander, which owns Abbey National, Bradford & Bingley and Alliance & Leicester, said the move was in response to complaints about its operations in Bangalore and Pune.
‘Our customers tell us they prefer our call centres to be in the UK and not offshore.
‘We have listened to the  feedback and have acted by  re-establishing our call centres back here.
Read more:
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- writes: In what could be a repeat of the easy-lending cycle that led to the housing crisis, the Justice Department has asked several banks to relax their mortgage underwriting standards and approve loans for minorities with poor credit as part of a new crackdown on alleged discrimination, according to court documents reviewed by IBD.
Prosecutions have already generated more than $20 million in loan set-asides and other subsidies from banks that have settled out of court rather than battle the federal government and risk being branded racist. An additional 60 banks are under investigation, a DOJ spokeswoman says.

The UK Telegraph reports: British soldiers who spot Taliban fighters planting roadside bombs are told not to shoot them because they do not pose an immediate threat, the Ministry of Defence has admitted.

There has to be an immediate threat to life and that’s a hard thing to prove. An IED does not count as an immediate threat.

“The Americans are different – their Rules of Engagement are pretty liberal. If they even suspect someone of laying a bomb, they can shoot them.”
Afghans routinely dig holes in river banks to store meat because there is no refrigeration and farmers often dig at night because it is cooler to work.


ZeroHedge reports: HR 2411 states that every worker in America should be able to voluntarily have a portion of his/her wages automatically withheld and sent directly to the Treasury Department for the purposes of paying down the federal debt.
Every employer making payment of wages shall deduct and withhold upon such wages any amounts so elected, and shall pay such amounts over to the Secretary of the Treasury…
That’s right. Uncle Sam is so broke that he wants to give all the good little Americans out there the opportunity to contribute an even greater portion of their paychecks to finance government largess.
Desperate? Hmmm…. Don’t worry, it gets better.
Obviously, if an employee feels so compelled and should elect to have a portion of his/her paycheck withheld, the onus of responsibility is now on the employer to make it happen. The employer has to do all the paperwork, withhold the money, send the payment to the Treasury, maintain the account records, and probably submit to all kinds of new filing requirements.
You can imagine that, if passed, the bill will result in a host of new IRS regulations, complete with a battery of penalties for employers who don’t fill out the paperwork properly, submit filings on time, or make some administrative mistake.
    Directly from the Library of Congress:  (a) In General- An employee may elect for an employer to deduct and withhold upon the payment of wages by such employer amounts to be used to reduce the public debt.
    (b) Requirement of Withholding- Every employer making payment of wages shall deduct and withhold upon such wages any amounts so elected, and shall pay such amounts over to the Secretary of the Treasury at such times and in such manner as the Secretary shall by regulation prescribe.
by Mark Weaver
FAIRFAX, Va. -- Resort-style swimming pools with fountains and heated spas, billiards rooms, granite counter tops, ceramic tile, indoor basketball courts, stainless steel appliances -- many Fairfax County taxpayers cannot afford such luxuries.  But they are paying for these amenities for use by low-income residents who live in subsidized housing in affluent neighborhoods.
"They're a part of our rental program where we subsidize the rents for the individuals in the units, and we end up having to pick up the condo fees," supervisor Pat Herrity told 630 WMAL News.
Herrity does not advocate putting low-income residents in "ghetto-style" housing but he takes issue with taxpayers who cannot afford such luxuries being forced to pick up the tab for people who qualify for subsidized housing.
[One person who commented on this pointed out: In most redevelopments, part of the approval process for developers who come in to areas of currently affordable housing, is to agree to set aside a certain number of units to replace the affordable housing units lost.]
Expose Obama writes: Barack Obama’s threat to bypass Congress and raise the debt ceiling has stirred significant talk of impeachment —and not just on talk radio. A Republican Congressman has confirmed some of his colleagues are talking about initiating impeachment hearings. Scott Keyes of asked Rep. Pete Olson of Texas:“Congressman Tim Scott of South Carolina yesterday in a town hall said if President Obama were to just ignore the debt ceiling,then he might be favoring bringing up articles of impeachment. Is that something that you’ve heard discussed much among your colleagues?”Olson replied,“A little bit.”Olson quickly pivoted to repeating talking points about the debt ceiling,so Think Progress’s Lee Fang followed up:“So Congressman Scott,is he just a lonely voice or are there a large number of people who are talking about this?”Olson answered,“He’s not a lonely voice.”
Congressman Olson’s statement confirms that a number of Congressmen are discussing a motion to remove Barack Obama from office.
Ben Johnson :Conservatives who say they believe in "peace through strength" might take a lesson from the Obama administration this week. Its officials walked back discussion of an end-run around Congress on the debt ceiling after Republicans stepped up their talk of impeaching Barack Obama.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner had raised the possibility the president might unilaterally raise the debt ceiling under the pretext of the 14th Amendment. On Tuesday....

World Net Daily reports: Subpoena Targets “1961 Typewritten Birth Certificate”

Bob Unruh,

A subpoena has been served on officials in the Hawaii Department of Health and the state’s attorney general demanding access to the original “1961 typewritten birth certificate #10641 for Barack Obama.”
The attorney behind the case,Orly Taitz,told WND she is asking a court to compel compliance.
The California attorney contends the state’s “privacy”regulations should be ignored,as Obama already has released what the White House purported to be a copy of the document to the public.
She has developed a case in Washington,D.C.,seeking the original application for Obama’s Social Security number,a document that could provide significant information about the president’s early life that relates to his eligibility.
U.S. District Court Chief Judge Royce Lamberth recently rejected a defense concern over procedure in the dispute. Taitz said that moved the case into the discovery phase,in which she can issue subpoenas to those holding documentation she is seeking.
WND previously has reported on the issue that Obama holds a Connecticut-based Social Security number despite allegedly being born in Hawaii,starting his work career in the Aloha State,and never having lived in Connecticut.
The first three digits of a Social Security number indicate the state of the applicant’s mailing address. Obama’s number begins with 042,which falls within Connecticut’s range of 040 through 049.
The Washington Post writes: Senate Democrats have drafted a sweeping debt-reduction plan that would slice $4 trillion from projected borrowing over the next decade without touching the expensive health and retirement programs targeted by President Obama.
Instead, Senate Democrats are proposing to stabilize borrowing through sharp cuts at the Pentagon and other government agencies, as well as $2 trillion in new taxes, primarily on families earning more than $1 million year, according to a copy of the plan obtained by The Washington Post.
The Salem News reports: New information indicates that U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder's actions are squarely behind the ATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms) operation known as "Fast and Furious", which orchestrated the delivery of almost 2,000 weapons to Mexican drug cartels[1].
Holder openly proclaimed his connection to the operation in April 2009 during a publicized speech in Mexico, then told a Congressional Committee in May 2011, "I probably heard of Fast and Furious the first time in the last few weeks."[2]
The Washington Times reports: A coalition of reform groups wants the House Committee on Ethics to resume its work on the long-pending investigation of Rep. Maxine Waters and provide a public accounting of the status of the case against the California Democrat.
In a statement Friday, the Campaign Legal Center, Common Cause, the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), Democracy 21, the League of Women Voters and Public Citizen said no public notice of the status of the 2-year-old case has been provided “since the abrupt and unexplained cancellation” of a scheduled hearing in November.
In a letter to Rep. Jo Bonner, Alabama Republican and ethics committee chairman, and its ranking Democrat, Linda T. Sanchez of California, the coalition said the “unexplained delay undermines confidence in the ethics process and is unfair to all parties involved in the case.”
The Wall St. Journal reports: The U.S. labor market could stay sluggish for a while, with small-business executives reluctant to hire amid the murky economic outlook.
Almost two-thirds—64%—of small-business executives surveyed said they weren't expecting to add to their payrolls in the next year and another 12% planned to cut jobs, according to a U.S. Chamber of Commerce report to be released Monday. Just 19% said they would expand their work forces.
"I think it's safer to stay on hold and not hire workers," said Harold Jackson, chief executive of Buffalo Supply, a Lafayette, Colo., distributor of high-tech medical equipment used in operating rooms.
The modest hiring plans of small businesses don't make up for the job losses in the past year, when some 29% let go workers, far outpacing the numbers that now plan to hire.