CONTENTS: Dan Hannan replay; Boehner gets TEA; Henninger – BO’s likeability; FreshJuice for BO; Kurtz – IPAB & Obama; Strassel – slush funds; Love Jesus, Love America; Issa snubbed; Cheaper Gasoline; Leftist insanity; PC smothers Easter; TEA vs greens; DISCLOSE mutates; Hanson – Bill & Hill in MidEast; Guzzardi – SB1, Leach/Greenleaf, school choice, Dwight Evans; Our age & our leaders; “Trump the magnificent bastard”; Your cost of living
Announcements at p. 8 and at http://www.deadcatsandclippings.com/?page_id=3984
4/22/1864: Congress approved putting the phrase “In God We Trust” on America coins. (Bennett & Cribb, 2008)
Dr. Terry Jones confronts Islam today at a mosque in Michigan.
Hillsdale’s webinar, “Economic Liberty and the Constitution” is still up for viewing.
Daniel Hannan: About Gordon Brown, Could’a Been about BO…
“You’ve spoken here about free trade, and amen to that. Who would have guessed, listening to you just now, that you were the author of the phrase ‘British jobs for British workers’ and that you have subsidised, where you have not nationalised outright, swathes of our economy, including the car industry and many of the banks? Perhaps you would have more moral authority in this house if your actions matched your words? Perhaps you would have more legitimacy in the councils of the world if the United Kingdom were not going into this recession in the worst condition of any G20 country?
“The truth, Prime Minister, is that you have run out of our money. (emph added, jb)The country as a whole is now in negative equity. Every British child is born owing around £20,000. Servicing the interest on that debt is going to cost more than educating the child. Now, once again today you try to spread the blame around; you spoke about an international recession, international crisis. Well, it is true that we are all sailing together into the squalls. But not every vessel in the convoy is in the same dilapidated condition. Other ships used the good years to caulk their hulls and clear their rigging; in other words – to pay off debt. But you used the good years to raise borrowing yet further. As a consequence, under your captaincy, our hull is pressed deep into the water line under the accumulated weight of your debt We are now running a deficit that touches 10% of GDP, an almost unbelievable figure. More than Pakistan, more than Hungary; countries where the IMF have already been called in. Now, it’s not that you’re not apologising; like everyone else I have long accepted that you’re pathologically incapable of accepting responsibility for these things. It’s that you’re carrying on, willfully worsening our situation, wantonly spending what little we have left. Last year – in the last twelve months – a hundred thousand private sector jobs have been lost and yet you created thirty thousand public sector jobs…” (emph added, jb)
Daily Caller: Mr. Boehner Served some TEA
“Conservatives are generally divided into two camps on the debt ceiling vote: On one end, there’s the “hell no” caucus, consisting mostly of state Tea Party activists and congressional freshmen who campaigned on the promise that they would never vote to raise the debt ceiling under any circumstance.
“Second, there’s a substantial group of Republicans — consisting of seasoned House and Senate Republicans and members of leadership — who have voted for debt limit increases in the past but say they won’t support it again unless there are “serious” cuts and institutional changes to the way Congress spends money.
“Democrats are also part of the equation, some who voted against raising the debt ceiling while George Bush was president, but now say it’s imperative to raise it and would do it tomorrow if Republicans would let them.
“Of those groups, the ‘hell no’ caucus has largely been ruled out. Boehner and the GOP must find a way to raise the cap to avoid a default while securing budget cuts so the Tea Party doesn’t run them out of town….”
Daniel Henninger WSJ: “Obama’s Likeability Gap”
“If it is true, as Michelle Obama said in February, that her husband isn’t smoking anymore, maybe he’d better start mellowing out with the cigs again before it costs him the presidency.
“The Barack Obama we’ve been seeing lately is a different personality than the one that made a miracle run to the White House in 2008.
“Obama.2008 was engaging, patient, open, optimistic and a self-identified conciliator.
“Obama.2011 has been something else—testy, petulant, impatient, arrogant and increasingly a divider.
“Never forget: That historic 2008 victory came with 52.9% of the total vote and 52% of independent voters. David Axelrod recently noted “how small the margin for error is.”
Fresh Juice for BO
This group spent $5000 each, or a total of about $76,000, to get into a rally, to protest on behalf of Bradley Manning, the imprisoned alleged leaker to WikiLeaks, and to sing “It takes a lot of Benjamins to campaign, we paid our dues, where’s our change…” This occurred after his Facebook show in which he answered eight questions, all o f them written by Facebook staff…
Stanley Kurtz, NRO: “IPAB, Obama, and Socialism”
“A month ago here at NRO, my EPPC colleague James Capretta described the real plan by which the president and his allies aim to close the fiscal gap. Their goal, says Capretta, is to work by stealth, so voters never fully realize that the government has adopted their strategy. The first part of the plan involves taxing “the rich” for Medicare and health insurance, but without Reagan-style indexing of taxes to inflation. That way, inflation-driven “bracket creep” will raise health-care taxes on the middle class without congressional Democrats ever having to vote for new taxes. (See Ross Douthat on this today.)
“The second part of the plan involves IPAB-imposed price controls and the large-scale rationing of health care that implies. But to work, IPAB’s authority has got to extend beyond Medicare. The idea, says Capretta, is to wait until the massive financial strains brought on by Obamacare bring calls for cost control. That’s when the Democrats will push for IPAB’s authority to be extended beyond Medicare to all of Obamacare, at which point we’ll be very close to a single-payer health-care system with Canadian-style rationing.
“The president’s speech last week tracks well with Capretta’s predictions….”
Kimberly Strassel, WSJ: The Slush Funds
“The groundwork is now in place for the real fight, over House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan’s comprehensive fiscal 2012 blueprint. This is the opportunity to move the spending-reform debate from the b-word (billions) to the t-word (trillions). T”…hat is, if the GOP doesn’t put symbolism ahead of substance.
“That risk exists, as evidenced by the recent brouhaha over ObamaCare funding. Behind the scenes, and increasingly in front of them, the GOP and the grass roots have been working up a lather over the ObamaCare “slush funds.” The funds are a worthy target—symbolic of everything offensive about the new health law. They are also arguably a diversion.
“The beef with the slush funds is that they are “self-funding.” Normally, Congress creates programs, and those programs must then be funded by later appropriations bills. Democrats—who worried the GOP might one day control the federal purse— instead included mandatory money for a half-dozen ObamaCare programs in the law itself, thereby denying future appropriators the ability to defund them.
“Adding insult, the programs are wince-worthy…”
Love Jesus, Love America
It must be liberal election selection…our Prez praised the glory of Christ’s resurrection, Mrs. Prez announced that she loves America…These are remarkable changes from two years ago…They probably like the free airplane and the gas for it and the Secret Service rituals that make them the star….
Dennis Miller Show: Ben Stein – Take Money from the People who Make It
Issa Snubbed by Obama – ATF Documents
“For the first time since Republicans took control of the House and gained the power of congressional subpoena, the Obama administration has declined to comply with a subpoena issued by top GOP oversight official Rep. Darrell Issa.
“In the face of a subpoena by Issa, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) provided no documents by the April 13 deadline, according to an April 20 letter from Issa to ATF’s director, Kenneth Melson.
“Issa is threatening contempt proceedings if ATF does not comply….”
Washington Examiner: Cheaper Gasoline
“‘There is no magic formula to driving gas prices down,’ President Obama told a Pennsylvania crowd earlier this month. Although he was literally correct that there is no magical concatenation of words involved, there is a formula. It involves either persuading Obama to reverse his opposition to significant expansion of domestic energy production, or replacing him in the Oval Office in November 2012….”
David Solway, Pajamas Media: Leftist Insanity?
Research accumulates from brain scanners and the people who drive them, that “liberal” and “conservative” have strong foundations in what you inherit….The scientists – many of them Brits and possibly leftists – interpret the patterns as other-inclusiveness and fear …I’m not sure that Solway/Jenkins have a better approach….
“In the gated community of the leftist thought-world, no suspicious words, abrasive ideas, or events disturbing to its peace of mind and settled convictions are permitted entry. It lives in an encysted, self-referential domain guarded against unwelcome intrusions. Thus, the expression of doubt, uncertainty. or hypothesis is generally lacking in its world-view. Its core propositions are usually context-free or context-impoverished, in the sense that the left tends to deny the existence of pragmatic referents. “Meaning is often mediated through a process of referential exclusion, an avoidance or even willed ignorance of the “facts of the matter.” It can look at what is demonstrably happening before its eyes and decide that it is not happening. It will then mobilize language to posit and describe a counterfeit reality, a knock-off world…”
“David Jenkins asks, ‘Could it be that leftism is a mental illness?’”
Lona O’Connor, Palm Beach Post: PC Suppresses “Easter”
“In Boynton Beach, they are still bucking a national trend that is reducing the Easter Bunny to a ‘Spring Bunny’ and Easter eggs to ‘spring spheres.’
“The city’s senior center is hosting an Easter show and an Easter bonnet contest on Thursday . The senior center is expecting about 120 people for its popular festivities.
“But by next year, even that might be gone.
“‘We’ll probably be changing soon,’ said Ann Foster, a recreation specialist at the Boynton Beach Senior Center. “I’ve heard there is a lot of controversy. Now people say, ‘holiday party’ and ‘holiday show.’ I don’t know where we’re going with all this.”
“The quiet de-Easterization of the bunny seems to have surfaced about six years ago, in shopping malls and some cities. The Boca Raton Town Center mall sponsors a “Bunny Bash Extravaganza” and the “Spring Bunny” has been visiting the Gardens Mall for years.
“Blessedly, the White House continues to call its annual event the ‘Easter Egg Roll.’”
Daily Caller: TEA vs. Greens/Agenda 21
“Across the country, private citizens and business owners are joining forces with Tea Party activists to push back against well-funded green pressure groups that work with government officials. Over the past few decades, the environmental movement has worked to undermine property rights, block entrepreneurial activity and expand regulatory control without a serious, concerted response, according to free-market advocates
“However, since the 2010 elections, Republican governors and state lawmakers aligned with the Tea Party have worked to unwind environmental provisions they view as being overly burdensome to business. This has occurred in tandem with legislative efforts on Capitol Hill to curtail the power and influence of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)…”
Hans A von Spakovsky, Pajamas Media: Alert! “DISCLOSE” by Executive Order
“An impeccable source has provided me with a copy of a draft Executive Order that the White House is apparently circulating for comments from several government agencies. Titled “Disclosure of Political Spending By Government Contractors,” it appears to be an attempt by the Obama administration to implement — by executive fiat — portions of the DISCLOSE Act.
“This was the bill introduced last year by Sen. Chuck Schumer and Rep. Chris Van Hollen to overturn the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. FEC. The bill had onerous requirements that were duplicative of existing law and burdensome to political speech. It never passed Congress because of principled opposition to its unfair, one-side requirements that benefited labor unions at the expense of corporations. Democratic commissioners at the Federal Election Commission then tried to implement portions of the bill in new regulations. Fortunately, those regulations were not adopted because of the united opposition of the Republican commissioners.
“As my source says:
‘It really is amazing — they lost in the Supreme Court, they lost in Congress, they lost at the FEC, so now the president is just going to do it by edict.’”
Victor Davis Hanson, NRO: BO & Hillary’s Adventure in the Middle East
Our leaders, stumped for options, have decided to throw drones (sic!) at the Libyans…drones that are slow, fly low, and are easy target for anti-aircraft fire. I hope that Hillary is happy about this mess… http://news.blogs.cnn.com/2011/04/21/obama-has-okd-use-of-drones-in-libya-gates-says/
“…the challenge for America should have been to prod pro-American authoritarians to reform (but not to abdicate), to support staunchly our very few democratic friends, to oppose publicly anti-American totalitarians, and wherever possible to stay out of intervening militarily, given that no resistance group as of yet has proved democratic, or indeed has even published much of a liberal reform manifesto.
“Instead, the Obama administration has done exactly the opposite in every case.
“There are two, and only two, democratic states in the region: Israel and Iraq. The Obama administration has serially pressured the former and cannot refer to the latter without expressing regret or apology for the conditions that led to the present constitutional government. The message seems to be that pro-American democracies are either taken for granted or actively distrusted.
“There are also as of now only two regimes that have collapsed: pro-American and autocratic Egypt and Tunisia. Once we saw protests against these regimes explode, the administration joined in the calls for Mr. Mubarak and Mr. Ben Ali to step down. Both did, and we understandably rejoiced at the chance of something more constitutional. Yet it is not clear what or who their replacements will be, much less whether they will be any more liberal and transparent…”
Bob Guzzardi: SB1
Pennsylvania’s $26 billion dollar unionized and bureaucratic government school system traps 10s of 1000s of children in violent and dysfunctional schools and denies these children a Constitutional Right to an education. SB 1, amended, offers these children an exit strategy; a Choice and an Opportunity to Parents who want something better for their kids. SB 1, amended, redirects money from the failed school system to individual parents and students. And competition challenges the government’s own monopoly on education. Where do your kids go to school? Where do Senator Daylin Leach’s kids go to school? What could be the justification for denying these kids an opportunity to escape? (Leach is also into bats…)
Bob Guzzardi: Leach = Greenleaf
In the closely contested Montgomery County Commissioners race the negative associations of the Greenleaf Voting Record to the Leach Voting Record e may well cause many common sense fiscal conservatives to think that Greenleaf, Jr. shares Greenleaf, Sr.’s – Daylin Leach perspective. This is a problem that the party will have to address.
1 Very Liberal Democrat Daylin Leach’s 2010 Record Liberty Grade F +
Very Liberal Republican Stewart Greenleaf’s 2010 Record Liberty Grade D-
Stewart Greenleaf is Republican Chair of Judiciary and Daylin Leach is Democratic Chair of Judiciary Committee.
The key money votes in 2010 were the 14 Appropriations Votes 1A through 14 A and General Acts 46,47, 48 and 82 relating to the Capital Budget.
Anomalously, because Daylin Leach voted against Governor Rendell’s 2010-2011 budget –Appropriations Act 1A – (it didn’t spend enough for Sen. Leach’s Liberal tastes), and Republican Senator Greenleaf voted for a budget that spent more than Pennsylvania’s tax revenues.
Most irritating were Appropriations Acts 10A to 14A which took millions of dollars from taxpayers and gave them to billionaire private corporations and the millions and millions spent to administer the state employees’ pension funds which are bankrupting Pennsylvania’s Taxpayers.
10A Penn State a $4 billion dollar corporation whose president Corporate Executive Graham “Too Much is Never Enough” Spanier, a leader among highest-paid public-college presidents at a total cost of employment of $800,592
11A UPITT a $1.88 Billion dollar corporation UPitt’s Chancellor Mark Nordenberg who had compensation that totaled $600,045 last year, including a $460,000 salary, a car, a house, $75,000 in deferred compensation and $65,045 in retirement pay.
12A Temple U a 1.074 Billion dollar corporation Temple University’s Ann Weaver Hart, whose compensation package last year totaled $602,403. That includes a $527,402 salary, plus a car, house and $75,000 in deferred compensation
13A Lincoln U
Acts 2A to 9A are not much prettier and, particularly infuriating, to me is Act 7A with $35,000,000 going to the opaque Gaming Control Commission and which could have gone
Bob Guzzardi: 2010 School Choice Poll
In my view, this poll tells us that Education Improvement Tax Credits are not well understood even though they have been available in Pennsylvania for ten years. Note the popularity of Vouchers with the African-American voter. Stunning. I speculate that this is a grassroots voter, a parents, who are sick and scared of having to send his kids to violent schools that don’t educate. It is not about unions, or governments, it is about an Opportunity to learn and to be willing to work for something better. Note the support for Universal Vouchers. There is a large “undecided”, another word for “opportunity to inform with facts.”
PHILADELPHIA, April 19, 2011 — Majority of voters say they are more likely to support legislators at the polls if they vote to pass school choice.
In a new Pennsylvania poll, conducted by national polling and research firm Public Opinion Strategies (POS), by a 15% margin (54%-39%) respondents favored pending legislation known as Senate Bill 1.
Respondents also indicated that the two most popular attributes of the legislation are that it gives parents more control and choices over their children’s education and that it gives poorer children stuck in failing schools other alternatives.
When asked if they will be more or less likely in next year’s elections to vote for a legislator that supports school choice legislation, 57% of respondents said they would be more likely, while only 33% indicated they would be less likely, a 24 point difference.
The survey was conducted April 13-14, and included 600 likely voters throughout Pennsylvania, with a margin of error of plus or minus 4.0%.
Bob Guzzardi: Dwight Evans
Dynamite and the numbers tell a story $3.5 Million to New Media 2008-2009!!! AND $700,000 for failed Mt. Airy nightclub, North by Northwest. How many other failed enterprises has Dwight Evans funded? Et tu, Chaka Fattah? Germantown Settlement, Emanuel Freeman?
Philadelphia Voters have a Clear Choice May 17 and again in November 8: John Featherman Mayor or Philadelphia Bankruptcy and “Business As Usual” politics benefitting a few Insiders. Will the Democrats, once again, win election with promises of Free Money Without Working and where will that Free Money come from if City is bankrupt and can’t pay.
Aaron Proctor described the City Council candidates well, if with a bit too much snark , reporting on the presentation at the German Society, April 20 sponsored by among others, Jim Foster and Germantown Newspapers.
Our Age and Our Leaders
“An Arkansas couple split up. It was not peaceful: The woman moved in with her granddaughter, the man lived alone. However, he still craved the sweet potato pies that his ex-wife made.
“The granddaughter ordered and delivered the pies. The old woman never asked where they went and the old man never asked their origin.” (From a letter to Bob Kingsley, American Country Countdown, 9/5/2010)
Do what we did or do something different…cultures stabilize habits in the middle of reliable assets and through the acts of old men, mothers, and small children. This works well until environments change and the cultures that fail are the ones that insist on keeping their old habits. Or get a lucky break when the invaders, weather, and earthquakes are passing things.
The cultures that follow older leaders often heighten their chances to collapse. The reason is that the most innovative brains are (usually) those of young males who (usually) have a more active right frontal cortex than the one that rides (usually) in the skulls of old males and in most – but not all – women.
Boehner, McCain, Lieberman, Romney, and Trump chant what they’ve always chanted – their futures are known by their pasts – whereas Paul Ryan, Sarah Palin, or even Barack Obama is more innovative. Each is also a gamble. Obama leads us to disaster at a faster rate and with more cleverness than McCain or Boehner could deliver.
Ryan and Palin are young. They are untried but exceptional. But so were Churchill, MacArthur, Eisenhower, and Patton who defeated their age-mate, Adolph Hitler, who had his own big-government inventions…
Dilbert’s Scott Adams: Trump the Magnificent Bastard
“It has come to my attention that there are still a few people in the world that I have not offended. I’d like to fix that by endorsing Donald Trump for president. But not for the reasons you might think.
“This morning I read a news item saying that some folks at NBC think Trump might be pretending to run for president to boost ratings. The story noted that ratings for his TV show are up 20% lately. I laughed out loud because sometimes I forget that at least half the country doesn’t realize he’s just screwing with the media.
“The magnificent part of this whole thing is that he’s putting no effort whatsoever into concealing his prank. That’s what I love about the guy. He knows that no level of clownery in a field of clowns will single him out as the one clown that doesn’t really mean it…”
Your Cost of Living
Fuel for your car and fuel for your belly escalate while Mr. Bernanke prints dollars. Obama’s response is to have Mr. Holder investigate the oil companies rather than our government’s restrictions on drilling and digging. Meanwhile, your Apple Iphone and iPad and Google’s Android track your movements… http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703983704576277101723453610.html?mod=WSJ_hp_MIDDLETopStories