CONTENTS: RIP (5 stories, 3 tapes); Imprimis – blasphemy & free speech; Hillsdale – Constitution 101; Freind – Catholic schools teeter; PA Independent – Welfare, Education, Pensions; Gas well fees near; Lincoln Radio; Ferrara – BO lost energy debate; Gallup – social issues minor?; Mosques double in America; Federal loans raise tuition; Erickson – Mitt’s loss; Newt tours the South; BO care hurts in swing states; Meckler left TEA national; Hanson – etiquette of killing dictators; Climate & skeptics; Volts; Jewish charities/media matters; Putin upgraded syrian radar; Isl group threatened WND; GOP primary schedule
Announcements: p. 11 and at http://www.deadcatsandclippings.com/?page_id=394
“I had less motivation to work and fewer skill sets after college graduation than after high school. I was cut off…” Andrew Breitbart, TEA leader, author of Righteous Indignation, and a genius for investigative journalism.
Breitbart’s 2012 CPAC Speech: “We’re not taking it anymore…”
Watch it, remember it, share it with your kids…
Allahpundit: Obama College Tapes Promised
“Via Mediaite, here’s the hotly anticipated answer to the lingering question raised by Breitbart’s CPAC speech. No, he wasn’t just messing with the left’s head when he said he has tapes of The One in his younger years. They exist, says Bannon, and he and some of the “Big” guys like Joel Pollak and Larry O’Connor are going through them. They must be near the end of their review too if Bannon can promise them as soon as 10 days from now. Obviously there’ll be organizational upheaval for them to deal with in the days ahead, especially with a new Breitbart site set to launch imminently. Watch to the end for a hint about that; supposedly it’s been in the works for two years and AB was putting the finishing touches on it last night in preparation for a Sunday launch. I assume it has to do with Obama and the election, but stay tuned.”
RIP – Andrew Breitbart, 1969-2012
Larry Solov, Big Government
“Andrew passed away unexpectedly from natural causes shortly after midnight this morning in Los Angeles.
“We have lost a husband, a father, a son, a brother, a dear friend, a patriot and a happy warrior.
“Andrew lived boldly, so that we more timid souls would dare to live freely and fully, and fight for the fragile liberty he showed us how to love.
“Andrew recently wrote a new conclusion to his book, Righteous Indignation:
“I love my job. I love fighting for what I believe in. I love having fun while doing it. I love reporting stories that the Complex refuses to report. I love fighting back, I love finding allies, and—famously—I enjoy making enemies.
“Three years ago, I was mostly a behind-the-scenes guy who linked to stuff on a very popular website. I always wondered what it would be like to enter the public realm to fight for what I believe in. I’ve lost friends, perhaps dozens. But I’ve gained hundreds, thousands—who knows?—of allies. At the end of the day, I can look at myself in the mirror, and I sleep very well at night.
“Andrew is at rest, yet the happy warrior lives on, in each of us.”
Lots more at http://biggovernment.com/
“…he had the Big Government websites, Big Journalism websites — the clip that he posted of Shirley Sherrod contained enough of her comments that any fair-minded viewer would realize she was telling the audience about her previous prejudices. This was the case involving all of the mythical black farmers that were signed up for a giant government payout. She and her husband were in on that, and so many of them were not qualified to receive the payment. They all got the payment on the basis of past racism and bigotry and all of this. He exposed Shirley Sherrod, just as he exposed Anthony Weiner’s photos, or Anthony’s Weiner photos, he exposed ‘em. Where’s Weiner today? He’s walking the baby to the dry cleaners in Queens.
“Then there was ACORN. Remember the James O’Keefe videos. That was Andrew Breitbart. They went walking in portraying a pimp and a prostitute looking for ways to scam the system, and there was ACORN telling ‘em how to do it. All caught on tape. It caused ACORN to theoretically shut down, and change their name and come back to life as a bunch of separate organizations. The AP article damns Andrew Breitbart with faint praise. It describes him as “an outspoken critic of the mainstream media but was lionized by his fans for his efforts at exposing government corruption and media bias.” Now, was he only lionized by his fans?
“Wouldn’t you think that real-life journalists would applaud Breitbart’s efforts to expose government corruption and media bias? I mean, what does the media claim to exist to do? To hold the powerful accountable! “Speak truth to power,” is that the phrase? Well, the mainstream media has become part of the power. When that power is held by the Democrat Party, the mainstream media covers up the corruption. He was exposing it…”
Michael Walsh, NRO: Our Lost Achilles…
“…It was not in his DNA ever to leave the field. He was the kind of leader the Right needs more of — not a go-along, get-along time-serving functionary but a tactical commander on the battlefield, ever ready to take the bridge, fire the village, and move on to the next objective. If he had a flaw, it lay in not distinguishing between tactics and strategy, and in fighting with targets (Media Matters and a host of other blogosphere hacks and nonentities) who were beneath him.
“He did not live to make General, which is the Left’s gain and our loss. But his example lives on. Those of us who were his friends, colleagues, and allies remain standing, in the fight to the end. It is the very least we can do for him…”
Jonah Goldberg, NRO: Andrew RIP
“…I’ve never known someone, perhaps with the exception of Drudge himself, who had more of a savant’s sense of media, old and new — but especially new. In the early days of the Drudge Report there was a lot of talk about how Drudge made the news, and that was often true. But he could only do that by understanding the news and how it worked at a visceral instinctive level. Matt saw this same gift in Andrew, which is why he hired him. The two of them changed the course of the massive river of news for literally billions of people. That’s no exaggeration, even venerable enterprises and institutions that despised the Drudge Report and pretended it didn’t exist had to change course because of it…”
Roger Simon, PJMedia: A Whirlwind Dies
“My condolences to America, which has lost one of its truly great patriots. Andrew, more than anything, cared about his country. He worked for it non-stop. And now he has given his life for it.”
Great Tape: http://www.pjtv.com/?cmd=mpg&mpid=86&load=5144
Another great tape: Breitbart’s Dinner with Ayers and Dohrn
PJ Tatler: “One of Andrew Breitbart’s most endearing habits: when angry progressives sent their hatred his way he retweeted it for all his followers to see.”
“@BenFinfer What kind of god takes Andrew Breitbart but leaves Ann Coulter?”
Paul Marshall, Imprimis: Blasphemy & Free Speech
“…A growing threat to our freedom of speech is the attempt to stifle religious discussion in the name of preventing “defamation of” or “insults to” religion, especially Islam. Resulting restrictions represent, in effect, a revival of blasphemy laws.
Few in the West were concerned with such laws 20 years ago. Even if still on some statute books, they were only of historical interest. That began to change in 1989, when the late Ayatollah Khomeini, then Iran’s Supreme Leader, declared it the duty of every Muslim to kill British-based writer Salman Rushdie on the grounds that his novel, The Satanic Verses, was blasphemous. Rushdie has survived by living his life in hiding. Others connected with the book were not so fortunate: its Japanese translator was assassinated, its Italian translator was stabbed, its Norwegian publisher was shot, and 35 guests at a hotel hosting its Turkish publisher were burned to death in an arson attack.
More recently, we have seen eruptions of violence in reaction to Theo van Gogh’s and Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s film Submission, Danish and Swedish cartoons depicting Mohammed, the speech at Regensburg by Pope Benedict XVI on the topic of faith, reason, and religious violence, Geert Wilders’ film Fitna, and a false Newsweek report that the U.S. military had desecrated Korans at Guantanamo. A declaration by Terry Jones—a deservedly obscure Florida pastor with a congregation of less than 50—that he would burn a Koran on September 11, 2010, achieved a perfect media storm, combining American publicity-seeking, Muslim outrage, and the demands of 24 hour news coverage. It even drew the attention of President Obama and senior U.S. military leaders. Dozens of people were murdered as a result.
Such violence in response to purported religious insults is not simply spontaneous. It is also stoked and channeled by governments for political purposes. ..
Hillsdale: “Constitution 101: The Meaning and History of the Constitution”
“This course on the U.S. Constitution will be offered online and at no charge to everyone who wants to understand and defend the timeless principles of liberty upon which our nation was founded!
“‘Constitution 101’ began on February 20, 2012, and concludes the week of April 30. IT IS NOT TOO LATE TO REGISTER FOR THIS COURSE, because it is archived online, you can take each course at your leisure. The course covers such topics as the Declaration of Independence and its connection to the Constitution, how the Constitution is structured to protect individual liberty and ensure good government, the crisis of constitutional government faced by Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War, and its modern challenges during the ‘Progressive’ era.
“It is my honor to teach the first class, ‘Introduction: The American Mind,’ and the final class, ‘The Recovery of the Constitution.’ All of the classes will be taught by Hillsdale College professors — the top teachers in their field and the same ones who instruct our students here on Hillsdale’s campus. Larry Arnn, Ph.D.
Christopher Freind, DelCoTimes: Catholic Schools Remain Open— But For How Long?
“Now that a short-term victory for many schools has been achieved, it’s time to push emotion aside and take an objective look at the situation, where more questions than answers remain. What changed? What transpired in thirty days that allowed almost half of the schools to stay open? Was it “faulty information” that the Blue Ribbon Commission received, as some readers allege? Or was it a few deep-pocketed donors stepping up to the plate? And if so, is relying on a handful of wealthy individuals really a sustainable financial solution?
“With that distinct possibility that schools will still close in the near future , how can the Church avoid it?
1) Start talking about the positive aspects of the Church, restoring the credibility that has been shattered by years of sex scandals, shredded documents and cover-ups. The Roman Catholic Church is the largest provider of social services in the entire world (and second in America behind only the U.S. government) and administers the world’s largest nonpublic school system, yet most people are unaware of those phenomenal achievements — a massive failure in public relations. The Catholic mission is perhaps the most noble on the planet, and the Church’s history, while certainly not without its darker moments, is a storied one. From its humble beginnings as the church of a fisherman named Peter, Roman Catholicism became the most benevolent and impactful force the world has ever known. It’s time to tell that magnificent story and educate the world — again — on what it really means to be Catholic, while purging every aspect of the scandals which have rocked the Church to its very foundations. Unequivocally, pride in Catholic identity leads to fuller schools.
2) Play political hardball…make it crystal clear to all legislators who doubt the ferocity of a newly awakened tiger — one that has shed its paper skin — that they will reap the whirlwind for that miscalculation….
PA Independent … Welfare, Education, Pensions
Bumsted & Puko, Pittsburgh Live: Gas Well Fees Up for a Vote
“HARRISBURG — The state House and Senate are near final agreement on Marcellus shale legislation that would establish an optional fee for counties to levy on drillers and provide state funding to help attract companies to process natural gas.
“Voting is expected to begin this week on a proposal that would allow each county with deep gas wells to approve a resolution authorizing a fee, which would not vary from county to county. The fee would be tied to the price of natural gas and be in place for 15 years, according to a ‘draft framework’ sent to House GOP members…”
Lincoln Radio Journal
“(March 4, 2012 – March 20, 2012) This week on Lincoln Radio Journal: Eric Boehm has the week’s news headlines from the Pennsylvania Independent; David Taylor of the Pennsylvania Manufacturers Association hosts a Capitol Watch roundtable discussion on the “four alarm fiscal fire” facing state government with Matthew Brouillette of the Commonwealth Foundation and with State Representative Stephen Bloom (R-Cumberland); And, Lowman Henry has a Town Hall Commentary on the impact of debates in the race for the GOP Presidential nomination.”
Peter Ferrara, American Spectator: Obama Lost an Energy Debate
“…America has the resources to be the world’s number one oil producer, number one natural gas producer, number one coal producer, number one nuclear energy producer, even the number one alternative energy producer. The reason you never heard about this before, as Gingrich explains, is that “the politicians in Washington, the old-time establishment, the elite news media, the bureaucrats, don’t have a clue what’s possible, or in some cases, they have a clue and they are opposed to it…”
Gallup: Social Issues Least Important
This is stunning and, I hope, flawed…”It’s the economy, stupid” is itself a very stupid outlook. Values give us reasons to question our gods and either to tolerate or to overcome adversity…cash flow makes us move to North Dakota or northern Pennsylvania…it won’t cause us to demand compromises from Islam…
“Registered voters rate the economy as the most important issue to their 2012 presidential vote, followed by unemployment, the federal budget deficit, and the 2010 healthcare law. Social issues rank as the least important issue.”
AP: Mosques Nearly Double in America since 9/11
“NEW YORK — The number of American mosques has increased dramatically in the last decade despite post 9/11 protests aimed at Muslim houses of worship, according to a new study. The new Islamic centers serve Muslims who moved into the suburbs and newer immigrants from Africa, Iraq and elsewhere.
Researchers conducting the national count found a total of 2,106 Islamic centers, compared to 1,209 in 2000 and 962 in 1994. About one-quarter of the centers were built between 2000-2011, as the community faced intense scrutiny by government officials and a suspicious public. In 2010, protest against an Islamic center near ground zero erupted into a national debate over Islam, extremism and religious freedom. Anti-mosque demonstrations spread to Tennessee, California and other states.
Andrew Gillen: Center for College Affordability: Federal Loans and College Tuition
“Over the past quarter century, a debate has raged within higher education policy circles over whether or not federal financial aid dollars contribute to college tuition increases. The theory that federal financial aid subsidies do enable colleges to raise their tuitions, a theory championed by former U.S. Secretary of Education William J. Bennett, has never been fully vindicated nor fully discredited by the evidence. This study provides additional refinements to the so-called “Bennett Hypothesis” by explaining the conditions under which federal financial aid can and does aid tuition increases and the conditions under which those aid programs (due to more effective targeting and design) provide little to no role in tuition increases.”
Richard Vedder, Chronicle: “Bennett, Biden, & Boondoggles”
Dr. Vedder promised to give us a list of colleges that are free of leftist bias in their humanities courses … he asks that you call … 740-593-0097; email@example.com
“…Andrew’s study (above) uses simple but powerful graphical analysis to make a point, and is an absolutely great example of how simple economic theory and some knowledge of college behavior can deliver stunning insights. In the end, Andrew embraces the essential truth of the Bennett Hypotheis, modified a bit (what he calls, “Bennett Hypothesis 2.0″)….”
“…First, these aid programs have always been justified primarily on the grounds of offering equal educational (and thus economic) opportunity. Yet Postsecondary Education Opportunity points out in its January 2012 newsletter that the degree-attainment gap between those in the top and bottom income quartiles has widened dramatically since 1970—roughly the era of major federal student-financial-assistance programs. This trend is exactly what we would expect if aid payments to price-sensitive lower-income students are largely wiped out by aid-induced rising tuition costs. (Because upper-income students are less price sensitive, their ability to pay is not as damaged by tuition hikes in response to increases in federal financial aid.)
The second piece of news relates to continuing research that I am doing with Daniel Bennett, a Ph.D. candidate in economics at Florida State. Our research so far suggests that expanding college attainment is associated with less, not more, income equality…”
Erick Erickson, Red State: Romney Loss
“When you have a candidate few people really like, whose support is a mile wide and an inch deep, whose raison d’etre (a 4am fancy word) is fixing an economy that is fixing itself without him, and who only wins his actual, factual home state by three percentage points against a guy no one took seriously only two months ago, there really is little reason for independent voters in the general election to choose him if the economy keeps improving.
Seriously, putting it bluntly, conservatives may not like Barack Obama, but most other people do. And when faced with a guy you like and a guy you don’t like who says he can fix an economy that no longer needs fixing, you’re going to go with the guy you like…”
Ken Thomas, AP: Newt Tours the South
“Gingrich spoke before polls closed in the two primaries and made no reference to either contest. Next week, on ‘Super Tuesday,’ 10 states with a total of 419 delegates at stake will vote in the GOP race, including Georgia. He represented the state in the House for 20 years.
“‘I think re-electing Barack Obama will be a disaster,’ Gingrich said at the University of West Georgia, where he taught during the 1970s. ‘The challenge for us is to present a clear and compelling alternative so that the country has a really clear sense of what the difference is.’
Gingrich was pinning his hopes on winning Georgia and showing strength in Tennessee, Oklahoma and other states voting March 6. He opened a three-day bus tour in Georgia to fend off rivals Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum.
Bypassing Tuesday’s primaries, Gingrich gambled that one of his rivals would emerge as a weaker candidate and give him a chance to climb back into contention in the topsy-turvy race.
Susan Page, USA Today: Swing States – BOCare Hurts
“…The battleground states surveyed include Michigan — where Tuesday’s primary has become a critical showdown between Romney and Santorum — as well as Ohio and Virginia, which vote next week on Super Tuesday. The other swing states are Colorado, Iowa, Florida, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Pennsylvania (emph added, jb) and Wisconsin.
Alex Pappas, Daily Caller: Mark Meckler Leaves TEA National
“Tea Party Patriots co-founder Mark Meckler told The Daily Caller that he resigned his leadership position with the grassroots organization last week out of frustration with how money is being spent and how closely the group has aligned itself with Republicans.
Tea Party Patriots (TPP) officials say they’re a coalition of more than 3,400 local tea party groups made up of more than 15 million members.
“In an interview, Meckler — a well-known figure in the movement — cited, as an example, how Tea Party Patriots spent $250,000 to sponsor the Southern Republican Leadership Conference presidential debate in South Carolina this year.
“‘That bothered me on a lot of levels,’ he said…”
Victor Davis Hanson, NRO: Etiquette for Taking Out Dictators, 15 Rules
“In the past 40 years, the United States has intervened to go after autocrats in Afghanistan, Grenada, Haiti, Iraq, Libya, Panama, Somalia, and Serbia. We have attacked by air, by land, and by a combination of both. In the post-Vietnam, post–Cold War era, are there any rules to guide us about any action envisioned against Syria or Iran — patterns known equally to our enemies?
1. The target cannot have nuclear weapons.
2. We do not attack large countries…
“…Based on these rules, we can make two general observations about Syria and Iran. In Syria, the U.S., on proper humanitarian grounds, could easily intervene through air power alone — without either congressional or U.N. sanction — to so weaken the non-nuclear Assad regime that, as happened in Serbia and Libya, it would surely and quickly implode. That said, we probably will not, given that such action would offend China and Russia, would not ensure quiet or stability in the aftermath, be soon criticized by those pundits who originally urged us to go in, and in six months be either unappreciated or overtly criticized by nations that had initially demanded that we do something to stop the slaughter.
“As far as Iran goes, based on past precedents, there is zero chance that the United States would ever intervene to change the government, either on the ground or by an extended bombing campaign — and only a slight chance we will preempt by bombing suspected Iranian nuclear facilities.”
David Evans: Climate – The Skeptics Case
“We check the main predictions of the climate models against the best and latest data. Fortunately the climate models got all their major predictions wrong. Why? Every serious skeptical scientist has been consistently saying essentially the same thing for over 20 years, yet most people have never heard the message – here it is, put simply enough for any lay reader willing to pay attention…”
Republished on www.wattsupwiththat.com
This document is also available as a PDF file here: TheSkepticsCase
“The Cost to Operate a Chevy Volt” – Snopes Caught!
The Snopes Finding:
“…False…the Chevy Volt is not intended to be a car drivable for long distances in electric vehicle (EV) mode.” http://www.snopes.com/politics/business/chevyvolt.asp
“Eric Bolling (Fox Business Channel’s Follow the Money) test drove the Chevy Volt at the invitation of General Motors.
“For four days in a row, the fully charged battery lasted only 25 miles before the Volt switched to the reserve gasoline engine.
“Eric calculated the car got 30 mpg including the 25 miles it ran on the battery. So, the range including the 9 gallon gas tank and the 16 kwh battery is approximately 270 miles. It will take you 4 1/2 hours to drive 270 miles at 60 mph. Then add 10 hours to charge the battery and you have a total trip time of 14.5 hours. In a typical road trip your average speed (including charging time) would be 20 mph.
“According to General Motors, the Volt battery holds 16 kwh of electricity. It takes a full 10 hours to charge a drained battery.
“The cost for the electricity to charge the Volt is never mentioned so I looked up what I pay for electricity.
“I pay approximately (it varies with amount used and the seasons) $1.16 per kwh.
16 kwh x $1.16 per kwh = $18.56 to charge the battery.
“$18.56 per charge divided by 25 miles = $0.74 per mile to operate the Volt using the battery.
“Compare this to a similar size car with a gasoline engine only that gets 32 mpg.
$3.19 per gallon divided by 32 mpg = $0.10 per mile.
“The gasoline powered car cost about $15,000 while the Volt costs $46,000.”
“So Obama wants us to pay 3 times as much for a car that costs more that 7 time (sic) as much to run and takes 3 times as long to drive across country. (emph added, jb)
Adam Kredo, Free Beacon: Jewish Charities Donated to Media Matters
Alan Dershowitz struck…
“…Several of the nation’s most preeminent Jewish charities are facing criticism for donating hundreds of thousands of dollars to MMFA.
“Five Jewish charities in some of the nation’s largest cities have donated nearly $600,000 to Media Matters since 2006, according to documents obtained by the Daily Caller. The bulk of the donations came between 2008 and 2010.
“A number of the charities in question are tied to the centrist Jewish Federations of North America, an umbrella organization that includes some of the country’s largest Jewish nonprofits, including those in New York, Boston, and Washington, D.C…”
Rabinovich, Washington Times: Russia Upgrades Syrian Radar
Is Putin being obnoxious to us or doing us a favor, preventing the spread of The Brotherhood and encouraging Chechen agitators within his boundaries… or maybe, one action accomplishes two goals…
“JERUSALEM — Russia has upgraded a surveillance station it maintains in Syrian territory in order to provide Iran early warning of an Israeli attack, according to the Israeli security-related blog Debkafile.
Bob Unruh, WND: Islamic Group Threatens WND
“A man who says he represents the United Muslim Nations International organization has warned WND to “moderate” its reporting on issues involving Islam because of how Muslims may react.
The warning came in an email to WND from Faarooq al Mohammedi, who said he was asking on behalf of the Muslim organization that WND “comply as it would be in the companies (sic) best interest as we would not want to take you down the same rout (sic) as we have with other non-complaint media firms…”
“…Pamela Geller, who writes at AtlasShrugs and long has waged battles against the encroachment of Islamic religious law in the United States, said while she was not familiar with the group, the tactic is common.
“The tactic is pure Islamic supremacist intimidation, a tried-and-true strategy that they employ frequently,” she said. “They cannot answer us, so they try to shut us down…”
GOP Debate Schedule
March 19, 2012 – 9pm ET on PBS
Location: Portland, OR
Sponsor: Oregon Public Broadcasting, NPR, PBS, The Washington Times and the Oregon Republican Party
GOP Primary Schedule
March 3: Washington State caucuses
March 6: Super Tuesday — Primaries or caucuses in Alaska, Georgia, Idaho, Massachusetts, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia. Wyoming caucuses begin.
March 10: Kansas caucuses
March 13: Alabama, Mississippi primaries; Hawaii caucuses
March 17: Missouri caucuses
March 20: Illinois primary
March 24: Louisiana primary
April 3: District of Columbia, Maryland, Texas, Wisconsin primaries