Thursday, March 31, 2011

Republicans Learning To Play Hardball!

For decades, the Democrats attacked Republican-supporting institutions. They spied on churches and sent the IRS to investigate their tax exempt statuses. They tried to ban corporate giving and attacked the Chamber of Commerce because they favored Republicans. They attacked wealthy Republican donors and groups like the Mormon Church and the Boy Scouts which they saw as being on the “wrong side.” And the Republicans never fought back. Now that’s changing, and it’s about time.

Unlike their ancestors, the new Republicans seem to be getting it. In the budget battle, they’ve specifically targeted federal funding for left wing bastions like NPR and Planned Parenthood. Arizona, Texas and Indiana started cleaning up the illegal immigration mess, much to the chagrin of the race lobby. Wisconsin and Ohio Republicans are going after unions, which is particularly significant because unions have become the backbone of the Democratic Party. Democrats draw money directly from taxpayers through the unions, and union bosses provide Democrats with “workers” for political campaigns. All of this will be a huge blow to the Democratic Party, as it will end their taxpayer subsidy.

Now three House Republicans are targeting another Democratic stronghold -- AARP. AARP is ostensibly a non-partisan interest group that represents old people. Indeed, they need to be non-partisan to maintain their tax exempt non-profit status. But everyone knows they aren’t non-partisan. Consider this:
● AARP opposed tax cuts under Reagan and Bush.
● AARP worked to defeat the nomination of Clarence Thomas.
● AARP helped Clinton defeat the balanced budget amendment.
● AARP supports gun control and lobbied to strengthen the Brady Bill.
● AARP supports entitlements for illegal aliens.
● AARP partnered with race-hate group La Raza to promote amnesty and drivers licenses for illegals, and to end enforcement of immigration laws.
● AARP calls homosexuality a civil right and opposes the Defense of Marriage Act.
● AARP pushed heavily for Obamacare even though it would cut $500 billion from Medicare, THE program upon which all of its members rely.
● While AARP does not contribute to candidates, AARP executives give overwhelmingly to Democrats.
AARP has 1,800 employees in Washington and they lobby. John Boehner notes that “AARP is one of the most liberal organizations in Washington, D.C.” And for their efforts, AARP gets around $83 million a year in direct payments from the federal government, not to mention their non-profit status saving them from hundreds of millions in taxes.

Now Republican Reps. Wally Herger (Ca.), Charles Boustany (La.) and Dave Reichert (Wash.) are challenging AARP’s tax exempt status and demanding the IRS investigate. They point out that while AARP claims to speak for seniors, it actually “operates in direct opposition to their senior membership.” Specifically, in lobbying for Obamacare, AARP supported a bill that would drain $500 billion out of Medicare, which would hurt seniors severely. Why would AARP do this? Because AARP stands to make an additional $1 billion over ten years as a result of Obamacare because AARP gets paid to refer seniors to insurance that fills in the gaps in Medicare. . . which will now have $500 billion in new gaps.

Moreover, AARP-sponsored insurance policies are not cheaper for seniors than policies seniors could get alone on the open market, and several AARP executives are paid seven-figure salaries. . . none of which is consistent with AARP being a non-profit. Indeed, a quick look at AARP’s funding is rather illuminating as to AARP's true nature. AARP gets most of its money from selling insurance and advertising. In 2008, AARP was paid $652 million in royalties from insurance companies for referrals. It also received $120 million for advertisements inserted in its publications. By comparison, it collected only $249 million in membership dues. Of this, Boustany said:
“During this investigation it became very clear that despite its privileged tax-exempt status, in many cases, AARP represents a for-profit entity, in fact, an insurance company.”
Of course the Democrats are screaming bloody murder as they always do whenever their allies get attacked. Democrat Sander Levin (Mich.) called this a “witch hunt.” Boo hoo hoo.

First of all, the Republicans are right that AARP is not a non-profit. It is clearly a very large for-profit insurance referral company -- so large it belongs in the Fortune 500. Secondly, its lobbying is clearly partisan. Thus, it cannot be a non-profit. Third, I don’t care if it is a witch hunt. The Democrats have tried to stifle anyone who disagrees with them for decades by passing laws against them and sending the IRS after them. It’s time the Republicans started playing the same game. As long as only Democrats are willing to use this weapon, they will continue to use it with impunity. Only by doing to their friends and allies what they have done to everyone else will the Democrats ever be stopped from playing these destructive games. And if that damages a couple of Democrat-fellow-traveler institutions in the process, then all the better.

Their next target should be the ABA and the AMA.

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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Top 10 Reasons We Like Top 10 Lists

Ok, I lied, I'm not giving you ten reasons for anything. But I will tell you why people are so obsessed with top 10 list and why this is normally a waste of time.

Human beings are by their very natures classifiers. We classify everything. We group by color, shape, weight, width or any other distinguishing characteristic. We feel compelled to put our books in a particular order, as we do with our CDs, which are kept separately. We put labels on species, trees, rocks, and each other. We even match our socks.

The reason for this is the nature of our brains which are designed to gather information and put it into a format that is easy to understand. Think of it this way. Take everything you own and put it into a pile. How long would it take to find two socks? And how much easier does this become when you create a system for storing your junk? The same holds true for the facts stored in your brain. Our brains literally hold trillions of pieces of information. Categorizing makes it possible to search this information in a fraction of the time it would otherwise take, because each category eliminates trillions of possible alternatives that otherwise would need to be sorted through: “Let's see. . . human (ignore animals, minerals and vegetable), white (ignore Bill Clinton), male (ignore Perez Hilton), fat, red coat and hat. . . must be Santa!”

This ability is perhaps the single most important ability we have. If we could not categorize and process the world around us, we could never know what is relevant to our lives, what is dangerous to our persons, or what we need to survive. Without this ability we would not know what is edible, we could not spot family members, we wouldn't know when we need to run or duck, and science would be impossible. This ability to spot patterns and bring order from the chaos lets us live and grow.

But this ability doesn’t always work perfectly. There is a psychological phenomenon called Pareidolia, where we have a tendency to see faces in random objects. This is a subset of something called Apophenia, where humans see patterns in randomness that aren’t there. This is our brain trying too hard to categorize the world around us. Essentially, these two phenomena result in us trying to group things that can’t be grouped. Coincidentally, this is where most conspiracy theories are born.

And that brings us to Top 10 lists. The problem with most Top 10 lists is that the list maker usually is trying to group together items using subjective judgments. For example, they are looking for the "best" or "worst" somethings. But subjective judgments are meaningless as they vary from person to person based on personal preference. Thus, these lists only offer us a glimpse into how this particular person has classified these items inside their brain.

So why do this and why listen? My first instinct is to say that both the list maker and the list reader are engaging in a form of Apophenia, as the list maker is trying to categorize that which can't be categorized to bring order to their world, and the reader is hoping to piggyback on their efforts. But that explanation isn't entirely satisfying because both should know that the list is subjective in nature and thus useless.

So what is really going on? Maybe the list maker has learned that they can exploit the human herd instinct? Maybe people continue to look at “best” lists despite the obvious meaninglessness of the information because they are looking for someone to affirm their own choices. In other words, if this guy lists “Melt With You” as his favorite 1980s song, then you were right to feel the same way. . . your behavior is consistent with the herd. And maybe the list maker knows this and making the list is their way of trying to lead the herd?

Or possibly, people are just trying to check their brain's functioning against how other people's brains function?

Or maybe it really is that our need to categorize is just so strong that we will accept false data, even knowing it is false, so long as it offers the promise of further categorizing our world?

In any event, think twice the next time someone offers you a "best" or "worst" or "most overrated" list. Ask yourself what criteria they are really using before you add their lists to your brain.


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Liberals Are Tax Cheats!

Liberals love raising taxes, and the reason is mainly that they don’t expect to pay those taxes. Some liberals are rich trust fund kids who have their income well hidden behind tax hedges. Other liberals are the perpetually lazy who don’t plan to work enough to pay those taxes. And the rest. . . well, they’re apparently tax cheats.

There was an interesting article the other day which outlined the demographic profile of the typical tax cheat. The article concluded that the average tax cheat also “engages in a range of other risky behaviors.” But they missed the bigger point: these tax cheats are liberals.

Of the people surveyed, 15% admitted cheating on their taxes. Comparing those who admit cheating against those who did not cheat, the survey found that those who admitted cheating were:
● Far more likely to say that they are “overall better people” than others.

● Far more likely to say that they are “special and deserve to be treated that way.”

● Much more likely to describe themselves as “spenders rather than savers.”

● Much more likely to lie about their income to qualify for government benefits.

● Much more likely to file a false insurance claim.

● Much more likely to keep the wrong change given to them by a cashier.

● And 28% of the cheaters admitted “they’d steal money from their kids’ piggy-bank” compared to just 3% of the non-cheaters.
Nice.

So the typical tax cheat is someone who thinks they are special and deserves better treatment than the rest of us because they are better people. Tell me that’s not a liberal trait! In fact, that kind of undeserved smugness is the very foundation of modern liberalism, which seeks to instill both unearned entitlement and unwarranted self-esteem in its adherents.

Plus, these “better people” are on government benefits. Again, this is solid liberal territory, as both rich and poor liberals look to the government as their provider. What's more, they lied to get those benefits. Lying has become a pillar of Democratic politics and second nature to liberals.

Moreover, these tax cheats have no qualms about stealing from the government, from corporations and from their kids to fund their out of control spending.

Clearly, the typical tax cheat is a solid liberal. In fact, if I didn’t know better, I’d swear this survey was conducted just on Congressional Democrats!

Imagine that.


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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Obama Speaks on Libya

Ladies and Gentlemen. Through our sources, we have obtained the original copy of Obama’s Libya speech before someone apparently cleaned it up ever so slightly. After you read this, tell us in the comments if you think this would have been better than Obama’s confused snoozer last night? And feel free to tell us what you might have said in his place. . . we'll pass your comments on to our contact "Joey B."

******

Enter speechifying room. . .
Look serious. . .
Read from TOTUS. . .
NO adlibbing. . .

******
Good evening. Tonight, I’d like to update you Americans on the international effort going on in a place called Libya -- what they have done, what I heard the Frensh and Britters plan to do about it, and why you should blame George Bush if you are unhappy.

I want to begin by paying tribute to the men and women in uniform on both sides. Because of them, our dedicated diplomats have saved uncountable numbers of lives. Meanwhile, as we speak, American troops are supporting your ally Japan, leaving Iraq to its people, generally not invading 187 other countries, futzing around with the Taliban in Afghanistan, and some other stuff that I don’t remember from the briefing. That has nothing to do with Libya, but it sounds good (don't read this part out loud).

You may not know this, I certainly didn't, but Libya sits directly between Tunisia and Egypt -- two nations that are located in a place called “the Middle East,” near Mexico. We used to call them the Orient, but that was racist, so we no longer call them Orientals. Instead, they are now called Orientations, which makes them happy and gay. Let me give a shout out to my third biggest contributors!

Libya is ruled by a man named Miramar Gandalf, who looks like Michael Jackson and smells like fish oil. He has denied his people their freedom, he exploited their wealth, he raised their taxes and he tried to seize their health care system and put it under the control of his sinister government. He has also involuntarily-ended-the-continuing-living of those who oppose him at home and man-made-disasterized journalists. That is what happened in Libya six weeks ago.

Exactly one day after that began, some people in places called Frensh and Britterica took action to try to stop Mr. Gandalf. Because they acted, we too have a responsibility to act so that we don’t seem weak. Though, we are naturally reluctant to use non-peaceful-expression to solve the world’s many challenges, the use of non-peaceful-expression is called for in this instance. But you can rest assured that I will do my utmost not to solve any of the problems in this Libya place.

When Gandalf began non-peacing his people, my immediate concern as President was with the safety of our citizens in Brazil. So I went to Brazil to ensure that our people, Kenyan and American, were not being mistreated. Contrary to what those who oppose tell you in the media, this was not just a vacation. And I can happily confirm to you that my trip was a success and for the first time in my wife’s life, she is proud to know where Brazil is located.

I understand that when the Frensh and Britters started non-peacing Gandalf’s non-peacing paid-volunteers, Gandalf chose to escalate his non-peacing. That was when I received a call from Obama bin Laden, my long lost uncle. He asked if we could non-peace some people in Libya too. So I unleashed non-civilian jets and helicopter regulated-militia-owners-ships upon people who had no means to defend themselves. These were taxhoarders and the IRS made swift work of them. I also ordered our non-peacers to do something about Libya. They tell me they have.

And we are not alone in this. Canada sent a box of maple syrup. Denmark and Norway sent a card. Italy and Spain and Greece sent promissory notes. Turkey sent a brigade to help Mr. Gandalf. And some of the Orientations sent other things in a box that I haven’t opened yet.

Make no mistake, we are serious about not-surrendering in this mutual non-agreement until our grievances are given a fair hearing by Mr. Gandalf. And we will stay involved and proactive in these events until such time as it is no longer time to remain involved or proactive, and I assure you that will be at some point. In the meantime, I have ordered my political team to find an exit strategy that allows me to blame this entire incident on the failure of George Bush to solve these problems before they were dumped in my lap. Tonight I ask you all to respond to all poll questions regarding Libya by blaming Mr. Bush.

Good night and may Allah bless you with a sexy camel.

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Monday, March 28, 2011

Why Unions Are Bad

With all the union vitriol lately, I thought I would explain exactly what I despise about unions. Philosophically, I have no qualms with unions. America guarantees the freedom to associated (First Amendment) and we enforce contract rights. So if a group of employees bind together and demand a group contract and employers are willing to accept that, then so be it. The problem with unions is what they've become.

First, I have a serious problem with union protections being put into law. If employees want to bind together, I support that. But only if the employer also has the right to not contract with them. I cannot support federal law giving one side or the other the right to force their will upon the other. I do not believe in freedom for only one side.

Secondly, modern unions have long ago stopped being organizations that seek to protect “workers.” Instead, they’ve become corrupt bureaucracies whose sole purpose has become self-perpetuation. What’s more, these unions are intensely short-sighted. They really would rather see a company or industry fail and see jobs sent overseas than they would compromise in any meaningful way. That’s why clothing is no longer made in America and why American cars can’t compete.

Nor do they care about consumers or the products they make. That’s why union companies fail to innovate and their products are shoddy. As proof that unions don’t care about consumers, no matter who they are, let me present this quote from Albert Shanker, the former President of the United Federation of Teachers: “When school children start paying union dues, that’s when I'll start representing the interests of school children.” That’s why our schools not only are falling behind, but cannot change.

Third, unions have become organizations of thugs. Witness the number of death threats their membership sent to Republican legislators in Wisconsin. This is unacceptable in America and the unions that encouraged these members need to be charged as racketeering organizations. Or consider that former SEIU executive Stephen Lerner was caught on tape discussing a plan to destroy banks and the stock market by trying to coordinate a “strike” on mortgage, student loans and local government debt repayment. His idea is to destabilize banks to “create the conditions necessary for a redistribution of wealth and a change in government.” Or consider the recent civil RICO lawsuit by Sodexo against the SEIU. The complaint alleges harassment of employees, threats of making false claims of wrongdoing, putting roaches into food served by Sodexo, and lying to hospital patients about Sodexo food containing bugs, rat droppings, mold and flies. These are not people who care about workers. They have become criminal enterprises that dabble in politics.

Finally, even when the unions aren’t misbehaving, their priorities are disgusting. Rather than protecting workers from abusive employers, they are protecting abusive perverts and criminals from justice. Consider what the New York Times just discovered. The Times conducted an investigation into state-run nursing homes in New York State. After examining 13,000 allegations of abuse by staff in 2009, including sexual abuse and violence against people with conditions like Down syndrome, autism and cerebral palsy, the Times found that only 5% were reported to law enforcement even though state law requires that each instance be reported.

Moreover, the Times reviewed 399 disciplinary actions take in 2008 against employees accused of serious neglect, physical abuse and sexual abuse. It found that in each case, the allegations were proven true and in each case the worker had previously been disciplined at least once. And what happened to these people? In 25% of the cases involving physical, sexual or psychological abuse, the agency just transferred the worker to another home. The agency tried to terminate 129 of these employees, but only succeeded in firing 30 of them. The rest skated through to abuse again.

Why can’t these people be fired and their crimes reported? You guessed it: their union. The Civil Service Employees Association (their union) challenged EVERY attempt at discipline. Said union executive Ross D. Hanna:
“If they’re brought up on charges, we have an absolute duty to represent them. That’s our job. When we know the person is guilty, we try to convince the person to get out of it by resigning. But if the person decides to go forward, we have to do our best job.”
That's bull! Nowhere is there an obligation to protect someone the union knows to be guilty. And if there is, then the union is not legitimate.

This is why people have come to hate unions. They don’t care about workers and they don’t care about companies. They don’t care if companies die or jobs vanish. They don’t care about consumers or taxpayers. All they care about is redistribution of wealth in the country, bulking up their political power, and protecting the vilest creatures from getting what they deserve. How does that help anyone?

This is what’s wrong with unions. They served a purpose in the age of robber barons when workers were treated like expendable machines. But now they’ve become the robber barons themselves. It’s time for them to reform or die.

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Thursday, March 24, 2011

Jamie Gorelick?! Is Obama Kidding?

The latest rumor has Obama looking at appointing Jamie Gorelick to be the next director of the FBI. Good grief. This pick should bother everyone. Gorelick’s career has been an unending series of conflicts of interest, abuses of power, and questionable decisions. Let’s look at the highlights of Gorelick’s reign of error.
1. Gorelick's Wall of Silence
Between 1994 and 1997, Gorelick was Clinton’s Deputy Attorney General, the number two position at the Justice Department. In 1995, Gorelick wrote a memo outlining what would become known as “Gorelick’s Wall.” This memo interpreted court decisions on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 and recommended a set of restrictions on the ability of criminal investigative organizations, like the FBI, to share information with intelligence agencies, like the CIA. Gorelick’s Wall prevented intelligence agencies from accessing the computer of Zacarias Moussaoui, a computer which could well have led to the discovery of 9/11 before it happened.

But wait, says Gorelick in an editorial, the 9/11 Commission found that this wall already existed under Reagan and Bush I, and it never found this wall to be that big of a deal. What Gorelick fails to mention, however, is that she was on the 9/11 Commission AND that she never disclosed her 1995 memo to her fellow Commissioners.

This is not only an incredible conflict of interest that never should have been allowed, but it shows exactly why such conflicts must be avoided. By accepting the position on the 9/11 Commission, Gorelick essentially placed herself in the position of investigating herself. The fact she ignored such an obvious conflict of interest speaks poorly of her judgment. Moreover, her failure to disclosed this key memo to the Commission makes any conclusion they reached on this issue meaningless.

Further, Gorelick tries to defend herself by blaming Reagan and Bush for creating the policy, even though she is the one who provided the new interpretation. Then she tries to blame Janet Reno by claiming that her memo was less restrictive than what Reno ultimately put out (an argument which contradicts her attempts to blame Reagan or Bush). Also, she attacks her critics as “partisans” and blames “public rancor” for the allegations against her, which is an evasive tactic.

This incident is an ethical disgrace, and it calls into question whether she can put the interests of the FBI and the nation above her own self-interest.
2. Gorelick Champions Governments’ Right To Know
Also while serving as Clinton’s Deputy Attorney General, Gorelick tried to give the government control over the internet. Arguing that the internet was “transmitting child pornography into our homes,” that terrorists could use the internet to communicate, and that the internet could allow hackers to “shut down the banking system,” Gorelick fought for a ban on the domestic use of strong encryption and tried to force companies to put their encryption codes into escrow so the government could get at them. This is evidence of a mind that cares little for civil liberties and Constitutional rights.

(FYI, internet expert Gorelick didn’t even know her own e-mail address at the time.)
3. Fannie Mae Pay Day
Moving on from the Justice Department, Gorelick took a job as the Vice Chairman of Fannie Mae between 1997 and 2003. Guess what Fannie Mae started doing while Gorelick was there? Yep: bundling subprime loans into securities. . . the same securities that blew up the world economy in 2008. In March of 2002, Gorelick defended this practice in an interviewed with Business Week: “We believe we are managed safely. . . . Fannie Mae is among the handful of top-quality institutions.” She was paid $26,466,834 during her time at Fannie Mae. We would pay $338 billion to bail them out (and take on $5 trillion in loan guarantees).

Moreover, during this period, a $9 billion accounting scandal arose at Fannie Mae. According to the Director of the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight, false signatures were used by Fannie Mae to shift expenses into the future and wrongly increase profits. During 1998, these false profits triggered $27.1 million in bonuses to a handful of Fannie Mae executives, including Gorelick, who received $779,625 of that.

This scandal eventually resulted in $9 billion in profits being removed from Fannie Mae’s books. And while there is no direct proof of Gorelick’s involvement, let me point out that direct proof was not considered necessary in scandals like Enron or under Sarbanes-Oxley, where executives are considered responsible for the actions that occur under their watch. Further, her senior position and the unwillingness/inability of Fannie Mae to investigate who faked these signatures or who was aware of what, call into question her role, especially as she apparently made no attempt to expose this issue.
4. Railroading White Kids At Duke
Following her departure from Fannie Mae, Gorelick returned to a big DC law firm. In 2006, she joined the defense team that represented Duke University in the 2006 Duke University lacrosse case. This was the incident where Duke railroaded 47 Duke University students on flimsy and contradictory rape allegations by a stripper with a history of mental problems, who actually identified people who were not present as the rapists, who then confessed to a friend that she was lying to get money from the “white boys,” and who later tried to set fire to her live-in boyfriend. Despite this, Gorelick’s client suspended the entire lacrosse team, took no action to stop threats made against the players, their families and the team’s coach, and sent out e-mails stoking racial tensions.
5. International Peace Through Superior Firepower
Gorelick now serves on the board of directors of United Technologies Corporation, a defense contractor with $5 billion in defense contracts, while also serving on the board of directors of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, organizations dedicated to (leftist) international peace. Do you see any conflict there?
6. Student Loan Lobbyist
Finally, Gorelick is currently a lobbyist for the lending industry fighting student loan reform. Remember the whole “no lobbyist” thing from Obama? No? Well, neither does Obama apparently. Oh, and she represents BP.

Gorelick has shown a lack of judgment when it comes to conflicts of interest, a penchant for passing blame to others, questionable business ethics, and an utter indifference to the rights of individuals. This is not someone who should be running the FBI.

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Liberals Savaging Liberals

I’ve been reading an interesting series of posts at a blog belonging to a liberal named Lee Stranahan. He bills himself as a writer and a filmmaker, is regularly featured at Huffpo, and now has worked with Andrew Breitbart. I’d never heard of him until someone mentioned us in his comments and that got back to us, but what makes these posts so interesting is that Stranahan has recently discovered that liberals aren’t that tolerant of dissent. Surprise!

His first experience with liberal intolerance began when he suggested at the DailyKos that John Edwards may indeed have had an affairs as the National Enquirer was then saying. This resulted in him being banned by DailyKos, something which continues today, and he received a vicious verbal beating from his former brethren. Here's a sample:
“Mr. Stranahan, you seem to be clueless, dimwitted and, apparently, stupid. . . So, my dear idiot friend, Mr. Stranahan, please, I implore you, go and crawl back into whatever foul putrid pit of a hole that you and your Republican Minion Trolls were spawned from.”
Can you feel the love?

More recently, he’s been blasted for working with Andrew Breitbart on the Pigford fraud scandal -- a situation where a large group of blacks are pretending to be farmers so they can claim they were discriminated against and thereby share in a settlement with the Department of Agriculture. Breitbart’s interest is exposing the black racism and the fraud going on. Stranahan says his interest is keeping as much money as possible for the actual victims, rather than the fraudsters. That’s fair. Yet, he soon found himself attacked for working with Breitbart. Here’s a tweet: “Listen douche. I don’t care what you think about anything. You’re a whore and a traitor. Just piss off, weasel.”

All of this opened his eyes. And now he’s discovered that leftist bloggers willingly spread false stories to attack Republicans. Imagine that! This story involves attempts by Minnesota Republicans to prevent people from taking more than $20 in cash off welfare credit cards each month, i.e. to stop them from using these as cash cards. Simple enough. Yet, a leftist blogger turned this into the following:
“Minnesota Republicans are pushing legislation that would make it a crime for people on public assistance to have more than $20 in cash in their pockets any given month.”
That’s a total lie and is not even close to a reasonable interpretation of the law. But that didn’t stop other leftist bloggers from running with this: “GOP wants it to be illegal to carry cash if you’re poor” and “[GOP] make it a crime for poor to have more than $20.” Stranahan says he found hundreds of leftist blogs repeating this -- the only blog that accurately portrayed the law belonged to a conservative.

Having decided that lying was bad for their side, Stranahan notified one of the blogs belonging to a woman he’d known for years. He expected she would retract the story. She didn’t. Instead, she trashed Stranahan.

Now, he’s found leftists telling everyone to block him for asking whether the unemployed really should be getting 99 weeks of unemployment.

All of this has shocked Stranahan. He is shocked that people he assumed were his friends could turn on him so nastily and so quickly. He’s even more shocked that the reason they turned on him wasn’t that he no longer believes in liberalism, but that he had the nerve to express doubts on a couple minor points. But what’s shocked him the most is that leftists would continue to spread lies when they know them to be lies.

Of course, none of this surprises us. We’ve all experienced this ad nauseum by now. In my experience, and those of most conservatives with whom I’ve spoken, the vast majority of liberals love to describe themselves as loving, caring, open-minded people, but are anything but. They don’t allow even the slightest hints of dissent. They shout down their opponents rather than debate them. They use racist, sexist and homophobic attacks freely. They condone violence, threats and death threats, so long as they believe in the cause. They lie. They deny the truth. And when it becomes impossible to lie or deny, they shift blame. Indeed, they excel at seeing themselves as victims in every instance. They even blacklist conservatives in professional ranks. What’s more, the behavior of leftist in the past decade has reached such a psychopathic level of rage that I have to assume there is a great deal of insanity in their ranks.

This isn’t a group that is going to like anyone asking inconvenient questions. So it surprises me that Stranahan is shocked by the response he got.

Now, to be fair, there are conservatives like this. But here’s the difference. As a conservative, when I go to a liberal blog and start posting, I will be savagely attacked by almost everyone at that site. I will be called a monster, a criminal, a fascist, a racist and/or a hater. My motives will be impugned. And I will be told that my views don’t matter and that I shouldn’t be allowed to speak them.

By comparison, when I’ve seen liberals come to conservative blogs (excluding trolls of course), they are generally allowed to speak their minds and many of the regulars will try to engage them in discussions. Are there conservatives who will unfairly attack them? Sure, but we’re talking about a small percentage of conservatives, maybe 10%-15%. At liberal sites, it’s close to 80%-90% who will do the attacking. Thus, I see the current poisonous state of our national discourse as the fault of liberals, as it’s virtually impossible to engage them in conversation, whereas most conservatives are willing to debate.

Stranahan sounds like a “good” liberal, in the sense that he sounds thoughtful and has shown himself willing to question sacred cows. If more liberals were like that, then our politics wouldn’t be nearly as poisonous as it has become. Let’s hope that his asking these questions might convince other liberals that it’s time to stop hating those who disagree with them and to treat those who dissent with dignity and respect.

In the meantime, let me congratulate Stranahan for taking the red pill.

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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Is Obama Right On Nuclear Plant Locations?

I don’t often agree with Obama, but it does happen. And right now, I agree with something he’s done. On Sunday, Obama’s Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced that, in response to the nuclear crisis in Japan, the US would start giving “population” much more weight when deciding where to build nuclear power plants. In other words, they’re going to start putting these plants away from large population centers. It’s about time.

I am not opposed to nuclear energy. I do not fall for leftist arguments, which are based on emotion rather than science and which mistake possibility for probability and demand perfection when no such thing is possible. But I also don’t fall for industry propaganda, which tries to pretend that a nuclear plant is no more dangerous than an old tractor sitting in some field.

The truth is that nuclear power plants are fairly safe, but they are not entirely safe. Indeed, there have been 33 serious accidents at nuclear plants since 1952 (with another 39 military accidents) and there are any number of things that can go wrong. And more importantly, when these accidents do happen, they have the potential to do serious, serious harm. Not only can they kill large amounts of people and make many more significantly ill, but they can make large chunks of land uninhabitable. Chernobyl, for example, resulted in an 1,100 square mile exclusion zone.

Thus, when thinking about building a nuclear plant, the first question we should be asking is: where can we put it that it doesn’t cause a major catastrophe if something goes wrong? This is simple common sense. When you store a can of gasoline, you don’t store it under your bed or next to your fireplace. You put it somewhere safe. You don’t build a house underneath a hanging boulder and you don’t put a school next to a toxic dump. It’s just common sense to account for potential dangers when building something.

Yet, for whatever reason (read: heavy lobbying), we have never thought about this when building nuclear plants. Indian Point power plant, for example, is only 40 miles from New York City, and 21 million people live within 50 miles of the plant. Imagine the cost if something went wrong! Not only could you be dealing with millions of sick people, but even if they all got out, you still could be looking at abandoning New York City in its entirety! And I’m not talking about evacuating until the danger passes, I’m talking about abandoning the city. What kind of criminally negligent fool thought this was a good place to put that plant?

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that we shouldn’t build plants. To the extent these plants make economic sense, without subsidies, I’m all for them. But that doesn’t mean we have to be stupid about where we place them. Here’s why.

Have you ever wondered how cities, states and countries are able to sell each other electricity? It’s because the transmission of electricity is highly efficient -- even given our outdated and poorly constructed electric infrastructure. According to electrical industry groups, the power loss resulting from transporting electricity 1,000 miles is only 8.71%. To transport electricity 2,000 miles results in a loss of around 17%. (Apparently, 2-3% is normal even for local transport.)

So how far is 1,000 miles? Well, St. Louis to Washington, D.C. is only 878 miles. New York City to Miami is only 1090 miles. Even New York City to Los Angeles is only 2,462. That means you can put reactors almost anywhere in the country and service most of the country with less than 10% loss in energy.

So why haven’t we done this? Well, it would increase the costs of electricity! True, but doesn’t it make more sense to pay 10% more for electricity than it does to run the risk that some disaster could eliminate a major metropolitan center?

Building any of these plants in or near a large population center is shortsightedness at its worst. Put them in the middle of deserts or on the far reaches of the coast. Don’t be stupid.

Thus, I have to congratulate President Obama for making the right decision here. I’m glad someone finally decided to use a little common sense.

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Monday, March 21, 2011

Impeach Obama The Warmonger!

I have it on good authority that Dennis Kucinich (D-Pluto) is made from clown concentrate and processed chicken parts. So it won’t surprise you that he’s now wondering aloud whether Obama should be impeached for his war mongering in Libya. Yeah, that Obama. . . the one who spent the weekend in Brazil cancelling press conferences so he could samba. Does he have a point?

For some background, the French and British decided something needed to be done about Libya, where Michael Jackson’s evil clone (see below) has been killing his own people. They went to the United Nations and somehow got the UN to agree to institute a no fly zone over Libya. Russia, by the way, agreed to the resolution and then promptly turned around and condemned it. Weirdos.

With UN approval in his pocket and the French leading the way. . . Field Marshal Obama fled to Brazil as our navy started launching cruise missiles at Libyan air defense installations to protect coalition forces.

Enter clown boy and his posse of “hard-core liberal House Democrats” (as Politico describes them). This group of hard-core fans includes nine House members including noted intellectual luminaries like Maxine Waters and Sheila Jackson Lee, and our friend Dennis.

As a group, they question whether Obama has the constitutional right to launch missiles against Libya (after all, the word "Libya" doesn't appear in the Constitution anywhere). They’re also upset that Congress hadn’t been formally consulted before the attack, and they’re upset that this would lead the US into a third war in the Muslim world. Said one Democrat on the conference call:
“They consulted the Arab League. They consulted the United Nations. They did not consult the United States Congress.”
Kucinich goes one further and says this raises the question of impeachment. Kucinich, by the way, is an impeachment hobbyist, having tried to bring impeachment articles against both George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.

So let’s look at a few points.

First, they are wrong about the “requirement” to advise Congress before blasting some foreign country. Only Congress can declare war, but under the 1973 War Powers Act, the President can commit US troops for up to 60 days without Congressional approval. So their point is garbage. . . and uppity Belgium better watch its back!

Secondly, this pretty much kills any claims the Democratic left flank has to legitimacy on war issues. They claimed they opposed Bush because he acted without genuine UN approval. Obama got that. Yet, they still complain. They claim they opposed Bush because he only wanted Iraq’s oil and Afghanistan’s. . . dirt. They said we should only fight when US interests aren’t at stake, like when an evil dictator is killing his own people and it has nothing to do with us (yes, they said that). Well, that’s exactly what Gaddafi is doing in Libya, and yet they still oppose the use of force. In fact, at the same time these Democrats were holding their conference call of stupidity, anti-war protestors were protesting at the White House gates.

What does this tell us? It tells us the left is lying when they come up with specific reasons for opposing particular military actions. The truth is they simply object to military action of any kind. Hence, we should start treating their objections as irrelevant.

Third, this tells us the left is unhinged and probably will field a candidate against Obama in the primary. Vermont Socialist Bernie Sanders says a primary challenge would be a good thing (sounds like Martha Stewart... "it's a good thing"), though he won’t do it himself. Our boy Dennis Kucinich says a primary challenge would make Obama a “stronger nominee,” and seems intent on jumping in where Bernie fears to tread.

But wait, what about Hillary, you ask? Well, for one thing, Hillary no longer has progressive street cred, so she might as well be Son of Bush. For another, Hillary essentially took herself out of the race this week, saying that she will not run for President, will not take another government job and will not serve in Obama’s second term. I suspect this is actually her attempt to bail out before the rats start abandoning the A.S.S. Obama once the writing on the wall gets clearer in 2012 -- which makes it a brilliant move. But whatever her reasons, she out.

So Kucinich is in. And since Kenya Boy proved that you don't need to be a US citizen anymore to become President, I think we need to expand the field of possible contenders for his VP spot. Thus, I give you....
Kucinich/Kaddafi 2012
. . . you heard it here first.

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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

2012 Contender: Herman Cain

Herman Cain is an interesting candidate. He’s a successful businessman with an impressive record of turning around distressed companies. He’s also an economic and religious conservative, with some creative ideas, and some ideas that will turn off moderates, and one or two ideas that are a little troubling. Is he electable?

The big knock on Cain is that he’s never held elective office. He has an excellent response:
Most of the people in Washington have political experience. How’s that working out for us? Not too well. What I bring to the table is more important than political experience, and it’s leadership experience and problem-solving experience.
But that kind of experience may not help when he has to deal with a political Congress and an entrenched bureaucracy which has more power than anything he’s dealt with in the private sector. Also, should the Presidency be a person’s first political job?

1. His “record”: He has impressive credentials. He has a bachelor’s in Mathematics and a master’s degree in computer science. In 1977, he joined Pillsbury and rose to vice president. Pillsbury later assigned him to run 450 Burger King restaurants in the Philadelphia area. This was BK’s least profitable region, and Cain turned it into BK’s most profitable. Pillsbury then appointed him the CEO of failing Godfather’s Pizza, which he returned to profitability. In 1992, he joined the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, and became its chairman in 1995-1996. Cain ran for Senate in Georgia in 2004 and lost in the primary. Today he hosts a radio show and writes a syndicated column. He has written several business books without the assistance of Bill Ayers.

2. Economics: On economics, Cain is solidly conservative with hints of libertarianism:
Taxes: He wants to make the Bush tax cuts permanent. He wants to reduce the top corporate tax rate from 35% to 25%, reduce the capital gains tax to zero, and end the tax on repatriating profits from overseas. “Liberals say, ‘You just want to reward the rich. No, I want to employ the poor. . . . this is how you can get a job.” He also wants to abolish the IRS and replace the tax code with the FAIR tax.

Spending: He wants to cut the budget across-the-board immediately, and then go through each agency making more cuts, “looking for whole programs to eliminate.” He also says he will veto any bill containing earmarks.

Entitlements: He wants to turn Medicare and Medicaid into block grants to the states and let them establish their own rules. He “totally supports” Paul Ryan’s plan for allowing personal retirement accounts. And he wants to repeal ObamaCare.

Unemployment: He advocates diminishing unemployment benefits over time to encourage people to work, which is what Tommy Thompson did successfully in Wisconsin in the 1990s.

Gold: He believes in the gold standard, which is troubling.
3. Unions/Wisconsin Cain supports Scott Walker and says we need to reverse the trend of giving public sector workers more and more.

4. Global Warming: He does not believe in global warming, saying the science has been manipulated and has become “garbage in, garbage out.”

5. Energy Independence: He favors biofuels as a means of gaining energy independence, so we “stop sending billions of dollars to oil countries that do not like us.” However, he does not believe in using corn: “you don’t use food, you use waste.” He also, apparently does not favor subsidies.

6. Defense/Foreign Policy: Cain’s position on defense is interestingly, but unclear. First, he says we need to start paying attention to our own interests: “The United States has got to stop being Uncle Sucker. We put things on the line, we lose lives, and what do we get in return?” And he wants to be more careful about putting our soldiers in harm’s way.

Thus, on Afghanistan, he says he would ask the military if we can actually win: “I don’t know the answer to that. If the answer is no, then give me an exit strategy. . . . If they say we can win in Afghanistan, I want to hear what the strategy is going to be, and then as president, I’m going to make the decision whether I want to execute that strategy.” So he’s not blindly gung-ho. That’s good.

But then his position on Iran seems strangely bellicose: “We’re not going to talk Iran into not developing nuclear missiles, so we should stop wasting our breath. . . I would park those nuclear submarines over there, with detection capabilities on those ships, and I would do the same thing for Kim Jong Il, that other sick little potentate in North Korea. The only thing they understand is the threat of force and retaliation. I wouldn’t make the first move. I would just make sure our warriors are in place.”

7. Social issues: Cain is a religious conservative, but it’s not clear what this would translate into. Indeed, he seems to be taking the position that these issues would not be his priority. For example, when asked about gay marriage, he said:
I will not sign any legislation that is going to weaken traditional marriage, but I am not going to make getting a constitutional amendment on traditional marriage the centerpiece or the leading issue of my administration. We have a few issues relative to national security, the economy, spending, immigration and education that I think we ought to focus on first. . . leadership is saying very clearly what our priorities are and what we are going to focus our energies on. There are some things that should not distract us from our most pressing priorities.
Here are his views:
Abortion: He believes life begins at conception and opposes abortion even in cases of rape and incest. He also has accused Planned Parenthood of being “formed to systematically lower the black population. . . because they don’t want to deal with the problems of illiteracy and poverty.”

Gays: He opposes gay marriage on the basis of his belief in the Bible, and opposes gay adoption: “How messed up are those kids going to be?”

Separation of Church and State: His statements in this area sound clear, but are strangely ambiguous:
“The First Amendment says the government can’t establish a religion. It doesn’t say that people can’t have religion in government. If you elect people who share the founding spirituality of this country, you will be able to depend on them to make the right decisions.”
What this means in terms of policy, I do not know? At the same time, he says he will allow Muslims “to practice their religion all they want,” but will not let them “force their beliefs, their Sharia law, on the rest of us.” Again, what does this mean in terms of policy?

Immigration: He supported Arizona’s action, and he says the idea of comprehensive immigration reform is a sham designed to do nothing. He says the US must (1) secure the border, (2) enforce the current laws, and (3) streamline the process for becoming a U.S. citizen. What the third part means is unclear.

Affirmative Action: Cain says he opposes quotas, though he’s expressed the idea that in some instances it’s acceptable to consider race.

Guns: He “believes strongly in the 2nd Amendment.”
Cain is one of those guys about whom all conservatives will find something to like. But they will also find something to dislike. And his appeal to non-conservatives is probably very limited. Would he make a good President? Absolutely. Can he win the job? Maybe.

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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Obama: Gutless Waffler?

"Why can't I just eat my waffle?" -- Barack Obama

Last week, Democrats accused President Obama of lacking leadership. This week, The Economist questions his guts: Obama hasn’t “demonstrated much political courage.” Well knock me over with a syrup bottle! How bad do things need to get before the MSM accuses a Democrat of cowardice?

Check out this quote from the reliably liberal Economist:
Has [Obama], at any point in his presidency so far, demonstrated much political courage? It's quite hard to think of an unambiguous example. It's much easier to think of examples where he appears not to have had the courage of his convictions. . . . It is surprising after all this time how hard it is to point to any particular action or episode.
Wow! And then they list his waffles:
● His “erring on the side of caution as the drama unfolds” in Libya.

● “Guantanamo is still open, despite his promise to close it.”

● “He reinforced the troops in Afghanistan, but set a date to start withdrawing, a careful bit of bet-hedging.”

● “He pushed for peace in Palestine, but seems to have retreated at the first sign of gun smoke from Capitol Hill.”

● “He established a bipartisan commission on the deficit, but failed to run with its recommendations.”

● “He said he would let the Bush-era tax cuts expire for the rich, but backed down after the mid-term elections.”

● “His support for gay rights has been a study in caution, as has his position on gun control.”
They do point out that Obama “went to the wire” on ObamaCare, but they dismiss this because “it would have been even riskier for him to accept defeat than to press forward.” And let’s not forget that Obama’s party had overwhelming numbers in Congress, so he faced no actual opposition.

Clearly, if he were a superhero, he'd be "The Waffler." And The Economist isn’t the only liberal outfit expressing a loss of faith this week. Consider these examples:
Union Wafflery:
In 2007, Obama told a union audience, “If American workers are being denied their right to organize and collectively bargain when I’m in the White House, I’ll put on a comfortable pair of shoes myself, and I’ll walk on that picket line with you.”

Comfy shoes? Yeah, that’s not a strange thing for a dude to say, oh no.

Anyhoo.... so far Obama refuses to get involved in Wisconsin. He won’t even send Joey Biden or his labor secretary. Heck, he hasn’t even sent a single death threat, unlike the rest of his union thug friends. This isn’t sitting well with the thugs. Says Rose DeMoro, the executive director of a nurses union: Obama has been “largely a bystander” and they “feel a sense of betrayal from him and are not liking it much” (does that mean they like it a little? Hmm, confusing). Other union thug-leaders made similar complaints. Obama has responded by adding insult to idiocy, when his press monkey stated that the walking shoes promise wasn’t meant to be taken literally. . . just like when he said “I won’t raise your taxes”. . . not to be taken literal.
Guns and Waffles:
Before Obama became President, he called it a “scandal” that Bush let the federal assault weapons ban expire. With the Giffords shooting and the new tone of unbridled death threats that inspired on the left, gun-control nuts thought Obama would finally follow through with prior promises to ban “assault weapons” yada yada yada. Obama even wrote an editorial, which contained the strongest words on gun control in over a decade, according to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence (Against Criminals). They had high expectations.

But now Obama refuses even to offer a timeline for taking any action, and he’s steering clear of the issue entirely. In fact, he won’t even confirm that he still supports various gun control proposals. Thus, the Brady Bunch has given him an “F” for his first two years.
Gay Waffles:
As Clinton was our first black President, Obama is our first gay president, at least he sounded that way on the campaign trail. But then he got elected and suddenly started defending Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and the Defense Against Marriage Act and refusing to take a stand on gay marriage and refusing to extend most federal benefits to the partners of gay federal employees. Hollywood gays called him out on that this week.
Eco-Waffles:
And don’t forget Obama’s incredible backflips whenever it comes to the environment. He started cap and trade and quit when someone objected. He went to Copenhagen promising to save the world and came back with an agreement to agree to ignore the conference. Windfarms. . . yeah, but they spoil the view. No coal gave way to clean coal gave way to whatever coal. Etc. Then he was going to open off-shore drilling, and he did. . . except he won’t issue permits (Bill "Groper" Clinton criticized him for that this weekend).

I could go on all day, but that would be pointless, just like Obama. At least liberals are starting to get the point.

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Monday, March 14, 2011

The MSM Smears Michele Bachmann

Oh my God!! Do you know how stupid Michele Bachmann is? She actually thought the revolutionary war started in Concord, New Hampshire, when it really started in Concord, Massachusetts. Like, wow! This is not someone who should be elected to anything. What’s next? Is she going to think there are 57 states? No, only a retard would think that. . .

In case you missed the three dozen stories this weekend and the headlines at every media outlet, Michele Bachmann made a mistake in her speech in New Hampshire. She wrongly attributed “the shot heard around the world” to Concord, New Hampshire. It actually happened 50 miles away in Massachusetts. Thus, the AP headlines screamed “Bachman flubs Revolutionary War Geography!”

Of course, all politicians misspeak. So what’s the big deal? It’s the ones with a pattern of being wrong who should concern us. Politicians like Biden, whose stupidity would require a teraybyte of memory to detail. Or Obama whose knowledge of US history and geography is worse than that of your average high school student. . . from Kenya. Or Pelosi, whose stupidity is so bizarre as to border on insanity rather than simple ignorance. So why pick on Bachmann for a single flub?

You know the answer to that. They’re picking on Bachmann because she’s a conservative and she’s a threat to them. If she had been a Democrat, they would have ignored her flub and savaged her critics for raising it. But she’s not a Democrat, thus the MSM smears her. . . just as they’ve done with every other Republican. Outfits like Politico are even trying to turn this into a big deal by claiming this is part of a pattern; note their headline: “For Michele Bachmann, a pattern of getting facts wrong.” Pattern? Really? Actually, it's only three facts and they aren't really "fact" facts.

For example, she said “the very founders that wrote [the Constitution and Declaration of Independence] worked tirelessly until slavery was no more.” What's the problem you ask? Well, according to Politico, while many of them (like the ones she names) did in fact become ardent anti-slavery leaders, not all of them did, and they ALL died before slavery was abolished. Hence, they did not work tirelessly "until slavery was no more" as Bachmann says. Clearly, she is a fool, right? Well, no. This is a smear. Bachmann never said what Politico claims: she never said they ended slavery, she said they worked to end it, and she never said "all the founders." Politico has intentionally misinterpreted what she said so they could attack her. That's bogus "journalism." And let me point out, using their logic, FDR wasn’t opposed to Nazi Germany, because he died before the Nazis were defeated. Hmmm, who knew FDR was a Nazi sympathizer?

She also said she wanted to hear from Gen. Petraeus before we take action in Libya. BUT, Libya isn’t under his chain of command. O-M-G!! What was she thinking?! How can someone on the House Intelligence Committee not know that Libya isn’t part of Petraeus’s command, smugged Politico. Of course, this too is a smear. She never said he was in charge of Libya, she said she wanted to hear from him on the issue. Why hear from Petraeus? Perhaps because he's the most trusted American military man since Ike.

Again, Politico has taken Bachmann’s words, given them an unreasonable interpretation, and then analyzed and spun that interpretation until they could declare her wrong. This is the equivalent of my reinterpreting your statement that you like your mom, as meaning that you don’t like your dad, because you didn’t mention him. And since you don’t like your dad, you must dislike all dads. And since Santa must be a dad (Santa did not immediately return our request for comment), you must have lied when you said you like Santa. Apparently, that passes for "journalism" in the MSM these days.

But then. . . she did get the Concord thing wrong.

This is all they offered to "prove" that she has a problem with "facts." So, do you see the pattern? There actually is one here. It's the way the MSM jumps on every issue (real or imagined) they can possibly use to smear conservatives as stupid. Yet, somehow, they give a total pass to every single instance of Democratic stupidity, like. . .
● Obama saying there are 57 states
● Obama seeing the nation’s “fallen heroes. . . in the audience here today”
● Obama’s plan to bring “greater. . . inefficiencies to our health care system”
● Obama’s claim that “Israel is a strong friend of Israel’s”
● Obama not knowing that Austrians speak German
● Obama’s claim about the deaths of 12 people in Kansas: “in case you missed it, this week, there was a tragedy in Kansas, 10,000 people died”
● Biden’s famous three letter word J-O-B-S
● any Bidenism
● Pelosi’s claim that “500 million Americans lose their jobs every month in this country,” a country of 300 million people
● Pelosi’s “we have to pass the health care bill . . . so we can see what’s in it”
● Pelosi’s claim that unemployment benefits “create jobs faster than almost any other initiative you can name”
● Pelosi’s “this bill can be bipartisan, even though the votes might not be bipartisan”
● Pelosi making up Bible quotes
● Pelosi’s scientific claim: “I believe in natural gas as a clean, cheap alternative to fossil fuels”. . . (for any liberals in the audience, natural gas is a fossil fuel)
● Pelosi calling “family planning services” economic stimulus because “they reduce cost.”
This is just the tip of the iceberg ignored by the MSM. Where there are Democrats, there is rampant stupidity and an MSM journalist ready to ignore it or excuse it.

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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Modern Media Matters

Let’s talk about a couple issues related to the modern media, both of which came to light in the past few days. First, we have the NPR issue and the whining about James O’Keefe. Then we have the issue of fake callers.
1. NPR Stung
James O’Keefe first came to the public consciousness when he pulled a sting on ACORN, exposing them as a criminal organization. His sting was so successful it killed ACORN. What made this all the more shocking, was the number of government organizations who should have been investigating/overseeing ACORN, yet somehow, “knew nussiiiiing” until O’Keefe exposed the truth.

Now he’s done it again. This time he exposed the bias as the top of NPR, with an NPR executive slandering Republicans, acquiescing in anti-Semitic remarks, and saying they don’t need funding -- this despite the fact NPR claims to be unbiased and continues to lobby for funding on the basis that withdrawing funding would destroy NPR.

So far two executives have resigned as a result of this, but that’s hardly enough. There is no way someone with these views or who thinks such conduct is acceptable could make it to the top of a news organization if his conduct was not condoned by the other managers and staff. And since I don’t recall any NPR reporters blowing the whistle, I think it’s a fair read that they too share his beliefs. . . as further evidenced by the bias they inject into their stories. So it sounds to me like it’s time for (1) a purge, (2) outside supervision, and (3) intensive sensitivity training by conservative and Jewish groups.

Of course, the left is complaining that what O’Keefe did was unethical -- they made the same claim when Tucker Carlson exposed the Journolist. But what O’Keefe did is a time-honored journalistic tactic used by 60 Minutes, Primetime Live and dozens more. It doesn’t suddenly become immoral just because it catches liberals.
2. Media Fakery
Leftists are also claiming that a company provides fake callers to shows like Rush and Hannity so they can control what questions they get asked. Really? Why? They get more callers than they can possibly use and their screeners control who gets through, so they already control what questions get asked. Moreover, anyone who argues for a living is more than capable of twisting their callers to get to any point they want. So why bother?

Nevertheless, this raises a good point to keep in mind: you can’t just believe everything you see or hear. Consider the issue of fake comments. Fake comments have become a part of the propaganda/marketing wars. They are everywhere now. When you see a town hall meeting on television, what you are seeing is a highly controlled, almost scripted event that is designed to provide the public with a certain perception of the politician who held the event. This includes selecting who gets in (including race and gender quotas), selecting who gets to ask questions, and often planting questions to help the speaker make the precise points they want to make. When you see a story at Yahoo or other news sites, you often see a couple hundred strangely similar comments appear usually within a short period of time. These are from groups that troll the web looking for articles where they can influence the public by creating the impression that the rest of the public thinks one way or another.

Even when you go to a website, you have no idea if the comments you see are real. Some are intended to make the place seem busier or to stir up controversy or to make the author seem more popular (unlike the first comment below, which is 100% legit!). In the commercial arena, some companies have marketing departments which go to places like Amazon and talk up their own products and talk down their competitors. One college professor was actually fired when he was caught anonymously posting malicious comments about a competitor’s book. Even the Washington Redskins are believed to have hired someone to post comments as andyman, attacking their critics at various newspapers. Some companies/political groups even set up fake blogs dedicated to their products, but which appear to be unrelated and spontaneous.

The point is you can’t believe anything you see in this anonymous yet highly-produced world, so the idea that anyone should be upset if Rush uses a fake caller is ludicrous. This also means, that despite the fact we have become a cynical people, we apparently still need to become even more cynical.

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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Obama "Failed to Lead"

Exactly what makes a person a leader is difficult to define. Some people have it, some don’t. But one thing all leaders have is the ability to chart a course and persuade people to follow them on that course. Barack Obama is not a leader. . . and people are starting to notice. People like Sen. Joe Manchin and Sen. John Kerry.

In February, Democratic Senator John Kerry publicly worried that Obama’s Afghanistan policy was failing. His reasoning? At the core of his argument is a lack of leadership. Said Kerry:
“What I don’t want is to be party to a policy that continues simply because it is there and in place. . . that is what I’m determined to try to prevent.”
Translation: there has been no leadership here. Obama is just doing what everybody else has done, and he doesn't have the leadership ability to change course.

But at least he's done something, which is itself unusual. Indeed, compare this to Egypt, where Obama had no idea what to say, so he said nothing, before he said something, before he said something else. At the same time, his “team” was busy contradicting him in every direction. Finally, when the outcome was clear, Obama tried to pretend that this was his plan all along.

Interestingly, his non-leadership on Egypt continues. This week, British Prime Minster Cameron is in Egypt, to meet with the new government and offer support. Obama was golfing.

Or look at Libya, where Obama didn’t say a word for over a week. When he did finally speak, he told us he had to be briefed first. While he was busy arranging a meeting with his staff, the British went to the UN and started working on sanctions against Libya. Then the British, Chinese and others evacuated their people, as Obama issued statements on Wisconsin. Now the British and NATO are working on imposing a no fly zone and/or aiding the Libyan rebels. Obama went golfing.

Now we have West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin ripping apart Obama’s budget proposal. He calls Obama’s budget a failure of leadership:
“Why are we doing all this when the most powerful person in these negotiations — our president — has failed to lead this debate or offer a serious proposal for spending and cuts that he would be willing to fight for?”
Oh Joe, you poor deluded hillbilly. Obama doesn’t lead from the front, he never has. When he came to power, he didn't outline a clear agenda like other Presidents, he spoke vaguely of giving health care to everyone, saving the world from global warming, fixing China, producing millions of jobs, and about two dozen other quasi-policy platitudes. And when the Democrats asked, “what do we work on first?” He said, “that’s up to you.” When they plowed into healthcare and the cracks emerged between moderate and liberal Democrats, and they asked him “help us decide who is right,” he said “hey, I’m not going to decide for you.” When they asked him to decide how to pay for ObamaCare and whether a single payer should be used, he got angry and told them to do the right thing. Then he went golfing.

Immigration reform and cap and trade died because he refused to get involved.

Financial reform? “Go ahead Sen. Dodd, I’ll sign whatever you and countrywide send me.”

Stimulus spending? “Sure, send it on over, I’ll sign it. . . whatever it is.”

You don’t want to approve my appointments? “Ok, whatever.”

When BP tried to destroy the Gulf of Mexico, Obama went golfing. He waited weeks before he even said the words "BP." Then he whined that his handlers hadn’t told him yet “whose ass to kick.” Leaders usually know those kinds of details.

He failed to respond to a terrorist attempt to blow up an airplane over Detroit, because he was on vacation. He failed to respond to Haiti until others showed him the way. The Chinese and other BRIC countries blew him off in Copenhagen because they saw him as irrelevant. The pirates in Somalia see him as a joke. He had to send Bill Clinton to save some journalists in North Korea, and he was nowhere to be seen when the North fired artillery shells at the South. He hasn’t even been able to find the American border with Mexico.

When the Republicans took over the House and a budget war started, he sold out the Democrats before the negotiations even began. Heck, even his State of the Union speech was just a list of things prior Presidents have done and a whiny request that everybody try harder. . . at stuff.

Obama is not a leader. He lacks the brain power to have an ideology, i.e. he has no ideas what he wants. He lacks the savvy to persuade people. And he lacks the willpower to stand in a fight.

So poor Joe Manchin better get ready for a lot more disappointment.

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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Who CAIRs? You Should Care

Americans are starting to fight back against fundamentalist Islam. Oklahoma passed a law preventing its courts from adopting Sharia law in their decisions. Tennessee made it a crime to support those who plan, finance or commit acts of terror. And Rep. Peter King (R-NY) plans hearings on radical Islam. All of this has been done over the fierce opposition of a lobbying group called the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR). But who is CAIR really?

CAIR calls itself a “civil rights” group and claims to be working to protect Muslims from discrimination. But their words and deeds tell a different story. For example, here is CAIR co-founder Omar Ahmad explaining that CAIR’s goal is to impose Sharia law in America:
“Islam isn’t in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant. The Koran should be the highest authority in America.”
And here is CAIR spokesman Ibrahim Hooper agreeing: “I wouldn’t want to create the impression that I wouldn’t like the government of the United States to be Islamic sometime in the future.”

But these are just words, so lets look at their deeds.

For starters founders Omar Ahmad and Nihad Awad were officers of the Islamic Association of Palestine, a group described by the Treasury Department as “intimately tied to the most senior Hamas leadership.” CAIR has tried to justify this by saying Hamas wasn’t designated a terrorist organization until later. . . when it started suicide bombings. But the FBI has said CAIR “went to great length and spent much effort hiding their association with [Hamas].”

Also, in 2009 (15 years after Hamas started using suicide bombers), CAIR sued the author of a book which portrayed CAIR “as a subversive organization allied with international terrorists” including Hamas. CAIR sued the author, alleging that the author had harmed them by publishing “unlawfully obtained. . . confidential” CAIR documents. BUT, as Politico noted, “despite the book’s harsh claims that CAIR is part of a ‘jihadist network,’ the suit does not allege libel or defamation.” In modern public relations parlance, that’s as good as an admission by CAIR because the only reason not to include such a claim is fear of what might be discovered during the litigation -- truth is a defense, and defendants have the right to investigate all allegations against them.

Further, a number of CAIR’s employees and founders are criminals with terrorist ties:
● Former CAIR Communications Director Randall Ismail Royer was sentenced to 20 years in prison for training to kill US soldiers. He pled guilty to carying explosives during the commission of a felony and of helping four people gain entry to a terrorist training camp in Pakistan.

● Former CAIR Communications Director Bassem Khafagi pled guilty to bank fraud after being charged with funneling money to terrorists.

● Texas CAIR Chapter founder Ghassan Elashi was convicted of shipping high tech goods to Hamas in Syria.

● CAIR fundraiser Rabih Haddad was deported to Lebanon because of terrorist ties.
CAIR also has defended Osama bin Laden and his conspirators:
● In 1998, CAIR objected to a billboard declaring Osama bin Laden “the sworn enemy” and demanded that it be taken down as being “offensive to Muslims.” They also publicly denied Osama bin Laden’s responsibility for the bombing of American embassies in Kenya and Nairobi.

● They called the conviction of the 1993 World Trade Center bombers “a travesty of justice” and called the conviction of mastermind Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman (“the blind Sheikh”) “a hate crime.”

● They called the extradition of suspected Hamas terrorist Mousa Mohammed Abu Marzook “anti-Islamic.”

● Florida CAIR Communications Director Ahmed Bedier said: "Catholic priests pose more of a terrorism threat by having sex with young altar boys than those who flew planes into the World Trade Center."
They have also praised and defended various convicted Muslim murders including Black Panther “Minister of Justice” H. Rap Brown, who murdered a police officer in March 2000. Indeed, there is a pattern of CAIR and similar groups coming to the defense (financially and rhetorically) of Muslims accused of violent crimes in the US.

In the Tennessee situation, CAIR misled the public about the meaning of the bill. The law mirrors federal law, which makes it a crime to finance or support acts of terror. It would have no application to the peaceful practice of Islam. Yet, CAIR claims the law makes it a crime punishable by 15 years to practice Islam. Indeed, they told the AP, they "fear the measure would outlaw central tenets of Islam, such as praying five times a day toward Mecca, abstaining from alcohol or fasting for Ramadan” and “this is an anti-Muslim bill that makes it illegal to be a Muslim in the state of Tennessee." Bull. Then CAIR began a smear campaign against Tennessee Tea Party officials, who support the law, and tried to get them banned from public appearances.

CAIR has similarly admitted trying to stop Rep. King's hearing, though they claim the effort is "widespread". . . as if that excuses it. And they tried to block Middle East expert Dr. Walid Phares from testifying at Rep. King's hearings on the basis that as a Christian, he cannot be allowed to testify about the radicalization of Islam as he cannot be impartial. They tried smearing him too, as they do with all who oppose them.

The Anti-Defamation League has accused CAIR of having a long record of propagating antiSemitic propaganda and "offering a platform to conspiratorial Israel-bashers." CAIR’s LA office head, for example, refers to Israelis as “zioNazis.” And while CAIR has at times condemned political violence, the ADL notes that their condemnations have been vague and generic. CAIR founders have also said they would never condemn any "freedom fighters" trying to free the Palestinians.

Even other Muslim groups have criticized CAIR for being “overly conservative,” by for example, taking the stance that all Muslim women are require to veil their hair.

Yet, our MSM has cited CAIR more than 11,000 times in the past 5 years!

So the next time you see a CAIR spokesman on television keep in mind who these people are. This is pretty clear evidence connecting CAIR to radical Islam and terrorism. And it’s not just right-wingers who’ve noticed. Sen. Dick Durbin said, CAIR is “unusual in its extreme rhetoric and its associations with groups that are suspect.” Sen. Chuck Schumer said CAIR has “ties to terrorism” and “intimate links to Hamas.” Of course, that was before the Democrats decided it was politically correct to ignore terrorism.


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Monday, March 7, 2011

Feminists: “Pay No Attention To The Tiger Mom”

I have long had a problem with liberal feminists. I make a distinction because I know many conservative women who consider themselves feminists and I think they get it about right. Their goal is equal opportunity and respect. That’s fair. But liberal feminists are something else, as their response to the Tiger Mom demonstrates. . . once again.

Liberal feminists are a disgusting species. Ostensibly, they want “equality” for “womyn.” But their version of equality is pretty skewed. For one thing, it involves a lot of oppression theory, and like all oppression theorists, their goal is to replace the oppressors rather than ending the oppression. Secondly, the only thing they despise more than male oppressors are women who chart a “traditional” course of motherhood -- the derision they pour out on stay-at-home mothers is truly vile. Third, their view of equality isn’t about equality of opportunity, it’s about equality of result. Thus, for example, they are offended that women don’t earn as much as men, regardless of the fact women make choices that harm their income potential.

Moreover, because they equate income with power, their entire philosophy is premised on forcing women to become Alpha Males. Thus, they disdain the hallmarks of femininity and they aim their philosophy at making women enter and remain in the work force. Indeed, this is why feminists are so obsessed with abortion: according to feminist literature, children are an obstacle to women achieving their full economic potential, so we must eliminate children. Thus, even when they can’t convince women to have abortions or avoid sex with males (in college you hear: “all sex is rape” and “the phallus is a weapon”. . . sure, try robbing a bank with one), they push for things like government sponsored day care, with the idea of getting women back to work as quickly as possible.

Many women find this troubling because they don’t like being separated from their children, and there is a vast amount of data showing that such a separation is bad for children. But feminists will not be deterred. Thus, they routinely put out intentionally flawed studies to try to con women into thinking their kids are better off in these environments. That’s where the Tiger Mom comes in.

The “Tiger Mom” is Amy Chua (above left). She’s a Chinese-American lawyer who wrote a book explaining why Chinese mothers are “better” than Western mothers. Her reasoning comes down to permissiveness and laziness. According to Chua, Chinese mothers push their kids to the edge of insanity. They control every aspect of their kids’ lives, from imposing three hours of homework a night to keeping them from participating in wasted classes or activities in schools to forcing the appropriate hobbies upon them. Naturally, this caused an uproar. But she also caused a good deal of introspection because many modern parents fail to place any expectations on their kids or impose any sense of discipline.

Liberal feminists were not amused. Although few women want to emulate the Tiger Mom’s parenting, the vast majority of mothers apparently concluded they should at least be a little more like the Tiger Mom. But this runs directly counter to the efforts of liberal feminists. Clearly, something had to be done to defuse this, and fast.

Enter Rahna Reiko Rizzuto (above right), a Vermont college professor. She’s been making the rounds of day time television, e.g. the Today Show, etc., where she’s being presented as the Western response to the Tiger Mom. Rizzuto says she never wanted to be a mother because “I was afraid of being swallowed up by that.” So when her sons were 5 and 3, she decided she didn’t want to be a parent anymore. She divorced her husband, moved to Japan and chose not to be the custodial parent. How did that turn out you ask? Well, you wouldn’t believe how great it was! Everyone should dump their kids. In fact, she’s a better mom for it, and her kids love her and turned out way better than they possible could have if she had stuck around like the oppressive Tiger Mom or those stupid stay at home slave women.

In an article at Salon.com, she said: “I had to leave my children to find them.” How Zen. And by being a part-time mother, she “get[s] concentrated blocks of time when I can be that 1950s mother we idealize who was waiting in an apron with fresh cookies. . . and wasn’t too busy for anything we needed.” Isn't that great? That's why kids are always asking parents to divorce, so they get to spend concentrated days with each parent. By the way, note the disdain for 1950s mothers, that’s a common theme in feminism.

Backing Rizzuto up is Talyaa Liera, a “spiritualist” and author of a parenting book. She moved 3,000 miles away from her kids. Sure, she felt conflicted at first, but then she “realized that by being so nurturing, I was in some ways keeping my children from growing to their potential.” Gee, no wonder all the best and brightest people come from orphanages or foster homes, they weren't hindered by being nurtured! According to Liera, she doesn’t regret abandoning her kids because she had the opportunity to grow personally:
“I have the unique opportunity most women don’t get to have, of being able to truly create the life I wish to have, do something in the world that makes a difference, and model this kind of independence for my children.”
Let me translate. First, her business opportunities are more important than her kids. Second, other women are suckers. Third, raising kids is not important nor does it make a difference. Fourth, “my being important is enough to inspire my kids.” What a selfish as~hole!

And of course, no liberal feminist diatribe would be complete without an assault on "the double standard that lets men do what we're doing." Right, that's why we celebrate absentee fathers rather than condemn them for abandoning their families.

But in the end, none of this is aimed at you. It's aimed at women who are doing what they've been told by feminists and are starting to have doubts. Make no mistake, the reason these absentee-mothers are getting play right now is that feminists are concerned the Tiger Mom has struck a chord that will revive the maternal instincts of womyn and will irreparably harm the feminist cause of turning women into economically-powerful oppressors. The idea here, just like with the fake studies that claim day care is good for kids, is to trick women into thinking they don't need to act like a parent to be a parent.

That’s what’s wrong with liberal feminists.

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Sunday, March 6, 2011

The World Is(n’t) Dying!

Environmentalists are nothing if not consistent. We’re all going to starve! We’re all going to melt freeze melt freeze! The planet can’t sustain us! Global warming will bring wars! And now, we’ve “unleashed” the sixth GREAT MASS EXTINCTION!!! Oh, the evil humanity! Don’t believe it.

A new “study” released in the journal Nature warns that mankind has caused the sixth known mass extinction in Earth’s history to begin. According to the study, Earth has experienced five prior mass extinctions. With the exception of an asteroid strike, the other four extinctions each took millions of years, and were caused by naturally-caused global warming or cooling (huh, I thought only man caused climate change?).

These five prior extinctions killed around 75% of all species. And apart from these moments, the study asserts, only two species died out on average every million years. But then evil man came along, and in the last 500 years, over-hunting, over-fishing, the spread of germs, and climate change have killed 80 out of 5,570 mammal species. This, researcher Anthony Barnosky claims, demonstrates that we’ve started the sixth great mass extinction, which could arrive between 300 and 22,000 years from now (depending on traffic) unless we “devote resources and legislation toward species conservation.”

Now, to be fair, Barnosky is “careful” to explain that there are weaknesses in the study. For example he warns that (1) the fossil record is not complete, and (2) mammals are an imperfect benchmark for Earth’s biodiversity. But don’t worry, he assures us, he has been “conservative” in his scaremongering.

Ok, let’s break this down.

First, the fossil record contains billions of species. The study estimates there are between 15 and 30 million current species. That is not a 75% kill rate in prior extinctions as the study claims, it’s at least a 97% kill rate (but likely closer to 99.9%). Thus, the study right away vastly understates the historic extinction rate against which it’s comparing the modern extinction rate. That’s a cheap way to make the present look much worse than it is.

Secondly, when he says the fossil record is incomplete, he ain’t kidding. Fossilization is incredibly rare because of the unique conditions needed for it to occur, and few species will actually be fossilized. This is how evolution scientists explain the lack of “transition fossils” to explain why there are no half-creatures. Moreover, because of the fossilization process, 95% of all fossils are marine invertebrates, 4.74% are plants and 0.25% are insects. Only 0.0125% are land animals. Of the land animals, only the most numerous and those with large, hard bodies are likely to have been fossilized.

This means that mammals and mammal-like creatures are the least likely species to have been fossilized -- most will simply disappear without a trace. Thus, we have no way to compare the extinction rate for modern mammals with similar creatures in the past. Therefore, when the study says that history shows only 2 extinctions per year, that by definition does not include mammals or mammal-like creatures. And that makes this study a fraud. This is like comparing the number of ships sunk in the past 50 years against the handful of ancient canoes found sunken in riverbeds and then assuming that modern ships are less safe because we know more of them that have sunk. This is statistical fraud.

Third, the study fails to address another problem with modern biology. To get funding, modern biologists have started finding new species where none previously existed. What they’ve been doing is taking things that would have been declared a single species in the past and they’ve exploded those into dozens of species. The natural result of this, of course, will be to dramatically increase the extinction rate because each species category is smaller and less stable. Think of it this way, this is like having five kids and then declaring each kid a separate species -- now, any one of them that dies before reproducing suddenly counts as a species extinction, whereas in the past, only the deaths of all five without any of them first reproducing would have counted as a species extinction. Thus, the modern rate of species extinction is vastly overstated.

Finally, the study uses averages to compare the past to the present, but it uses inconsistent averages and it misuses them. The study says (paraphrase): “large numbers died in the past 500 years, but in the past it took on average millions of years for the same number to die.” This sounds dramatic, but it’s false. The study author has no idea if the species that died in the “millions of years” actually died a couple per year (as the study implies) or if they died in clumps. This is like knowing that I ate a dozen donuts last year, and assuming that I ate them one per month, and then shrieking when you find out I ate a dozen donuts over two days recently because “the rate of donut extinction used to be one per 30 days and is now six per day.” This is statistical nonsense.

What we have here is a ridiculous study that is designed to reach a specific result for political reasons. It compares things that cannot be compared, it fudges its data, and even then it use statistical fraud. It’s like comparing apples to speedboats to reach a conclusion that bicycles need seatbelts, and even then lying about the speed of the apples. This study is garbage, and the fact that “scientists” would put it out tell us again that environmental “scientists” are not scientists, they are advocates spinning fantasies for political purposes. The field is a disgrace, and until they purge it of these people, it will remain a disgrace.

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