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Archive for February, 2009

February 28th 2009

Obama’s Budget: A Hope, A Wing And A Prayer

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s Prez-O sets off to grow the size of the federal government by a third, there is mounting evidence that it’s just not a very good idea. (As if we’d need much evidence!)

First, the economy offers up some screamin’ caution- it contracted by 6.2 percent in the last quarter at an annualized rate, blowing out the federal government’s standing estimate that it would “only” shrink by 3.8 percent. That caused economists to call a depression – not a Great Depression, mind you, but a depression nonetheless – 20 to 25 percent likely, according to an article in the Obama-boosing NY Times.

In that [mild depression] view, the unemployment rate would reach 10.5 percent by the end of 2011 — up from 7.6 percent at the end of January — average home prices would fall 20 percent on top of the 27 percent they have plunged already, and losses in the financial system would more than triple, to $3.7 trillion. …

Yet, in drawing up the budget, the White House assumed the economy would expand by a robust 3.2 percent in 2010, with growth accelerating to 4 percent over the next three years.

“It’s a hope, a wing and a prayer,” Mr. Sinai said. “It’s a return to a sanguine view of the economy that is simply not justified.”

But Obama soldiers on, not oblivious to the economy, obviously, but apparently not particularly concerned about doing harm to it.  Is he thinking that if it sinks badly enough, it will allow him to pursue even more radical solutions?

Perhaps. Perhaps the federal government will grow and grow, under the guise of fixing the economy and bringing back American strength.  If that’s so, then I’m worried because today I was on the Social Security Administration’s Web site’s database of most popular baby names - a nifty resource if you ever want to know what the most popular baby names were in, say 1978, as I did today for a story I’m working on.  Nifty, huh?

Well, what’s not nifty at all is this little note that runs at the bottom of the name tables:

Note: Rank 1 is the most popular, rank 2 is the next most popular, and so forth.

That’s the federal government Obama wants to expand.  Do they think we’re that stupid … or are they so stupid themselves that they needed the explanation and thought they’d better put it on the table for the rest of us?

God help us.

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February 28th 2009

Class Warfare

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here’s a book excerpt in Salon today, a story by a Brooklyn woman of her quest to buy a home back before the bubble burst, driven by the common fear that if she didn’t get in, she would continue to pay landlords for the rest of her live, that her children would never play in their own backyard.

The excerpt ends abruptly after two pages, just as she’s talking with her Realtor about buying a place using a no-documentation loan.  I know the rest.  They get a crappy, expensive loan and buy a vastly overpriced home.  They’re now upside down, and since they never really had the wherewithall to afford the place, they’re at risk of losing it and want The Gift-Giver in DC to bail them out using other people’s money.

Yawn.  Not interested.  But I am interested in the class hatred this woman exhibits as she watches more successful families move into the new condos that are being built in her new neighborhood:

Later, I’m in the park with my friend Geri and our spawn. I’m talking about the weekend and the million-dollar condos and the fancy new crop of families at the school when I find myself off on a rant against rich people and their designer diaper bags that starts from my toes and gushes forth like a Vesuvius of resentment. “These douchebags come in and ruin everything. What is it?” I ask. “Why do they make me so crazy?”

Geri, with all the wisdom of the Dalai Lama if he’d grown up over a bar in New Jersey, fixes her gaze on me. “Do you know any rich people?” she asks.

I ponder this. I have a suspicion a few of our friends are wealthier than they let on, but actual, three-kids-in-private-school, wheeeee-I-have-so-much-money rich? “A few,” I tell her.

“They’re all a**holes, right?” she replies. I have to admit she has a point there. “You don’t get rich enough to buy a house in this neighborhood today unless you’re f***ing people. So when you see somebody pushing one of those $800 strollers, you know it was paid for by f***ing people. That,” she says with a flourish, “is what you hate.”

That’s it? If you’re rich, you might as well have a tattoo on your forhead that says “I f*** people?”

Look, I live in Coto, where the nefarious “Real” Housewifes of Orange County folks live, so I know ruinous rich folks when I see them, but I also know plenty of amazingly decent people who happen to be rich – and they didn’t get there by hurting others.  I know an amazingly giving and charitable family that owns a chain of restaurants that serve hearty meals and a fair price, and another that owns a chain of hotels and loses bookings every day because they refuse to put pay-for-view movies in the rooms since doing so would require carrying porn. 

Rich folks like this are all over the place; it’s called success, achieving your dreams, filling a need.  And if the author of the book gets bailed out, it will be these rich people who pay for her mistake.  Obama will dig deep into their pockets so the Brooklynite doesn’t have to deal with her prejudices and her errors, so that she can go on with a grudge on her shoulder, hating anyone who does better than her, demanding a neutered and dying America so she can feel better.

She’s an Obama gal. No doubt. 

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February 28th 2009

Obama Declares War

CNBC, the only feather in the NBC peacock that deserves the title of “objective,” has done it again. After broadcasting the Feb. 19 Rick Santelli “Tea Party” monologue that fired opposition to Obama’s stimulus spending program, it now fires another direct hit on the SS Obama, this time from Larry Kudlow.  Kudlow says it pretty succinctly:

Obama Declares War on Investors, Entrepreneurs, Businesses, And More

Let me be very clear on the economics of President Obama’s State of the Union speech and his budget.

He is declaring war on investors, entrepreneurs, small businesses, large corporations, and private-equity and venture-capital funds.

That is the meaning of his anti-growth tax-hike proposals, which make absolutely no sense at all — either for this recession or from the standpoint of expanding our economy’s long-run potential to grow.

Why would Obama declare war on the American economy? Because, Kudlow says,

Raising the marginal tax rate on successful earners, capital, dividends, and all the private funds is a function of Obama’s left-wing social vision, and a repudiation of his economic-recovery statements. Ditto for his sweeping government-planning-and-spending program, which will wind up raising federal outlays as a share of GDP to at least 30 percent, if not more, over the next 10 years.

And what of those vaunted middle-class tax cuts? Glad you asked.

And as far as middle-class tax cuts are concerned, Obama’s cap-and-trade program will be a huge across-the-board tax increase on blue-collar workers, including unionized workers. Industrial production is plunging, but new carbon taxes will prevent production from ever recovering. While the country wants more fuel and power, cap-and-trade will deliver less.

On Glenn Beck’s show last night, Bernard Goldberg said we live in the United States of Celebrity and “Obama is the celebrity in chief, which is much more important than being the Commander in Chief.”  As long as Obama is cool, he’ll be in, Bernard said. I fear it’s true, and that even stuff like this, even on an NBC station, won’t overcome Obama on the cover of People and the focus of a three-minute feature on Entertainment Tonight.

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February 28th 2009

All Not Quiet On The Tibetan Front

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ust because the Olympics are over and the world’s flitting focus is no longer on the Communist Chinese government’s repressive dictatorial rule, it doesn’t mean everything is peachy in Tibet and the neighboring southwestern Chinese provinces.  From BBC:

A Tibetan monk has been shot after setting fire to himself during a protest at Beijing’s rule, reports say.

The incident happened in the Tibetan-populated town of Aba in southwest China’s Sichuan province during a gathering of more than 1,000 monks.

The monk, named Tapey, is said to have shouted slogans and waved a Tibetan flag, then doused himself with petrol and set himself alight.

Campaign groups said witnesses then saw Chinese police shoot the man.

The monk collapsed and was taken away by the police.

Chinese reports only mention the self-immolation, not the shooting – but people in the town told the media that the streets of the town, Aba, are swarming with Chinese police, and all of them are armed.

Next year marks the 50th anniversary of the overthrow of Tibet and the escape into excile of the Dalai Lama. Consequently, the Chinese are trying to keep a tight rein on Tibet, but more bloodshed and more repression are sure to come. 

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February 28th 2009

Dems Lie, Campaigns Die

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rom Flopping Aces, this little 8-minute film shows what we’re up against:  A well-documented record proving the Dems were at the wheel and in complete control of the economic collapse … while the GOP lies defeated and we live in Obamaland, where media complicitcy and Dem lies combine to keep the people duped.

The clip shows a Fannie and Freddy regulatory hearing where Dems are whistling “all is well” and blaming the regulators for politicizing the issue or for incompetence, while Republicans are calling for more regulation, becuase Freddie and Fannie are in danger of collapse, are mismanaged, and need needs to fixed.  This is not ancient history; it’s 2004, when Congress till had time to acknowledge the writing on the wall and take action that might have spared us the banking/mortgage meltdown.

You’ll particularly like Maxine Waters saying, “Under the leadership of Mr. Franklin Raines, everything … is working just fine,” and Barney Franks adding smugly, “I have seen nothing in this hearing that raises the safeness and soundness issue” at Fannie or Freddy.

That is the record.  We all know it is the record.  Yet the national media have so entirely given up on ethics that a substantial portion of the population firmly believes that it was Republican under-regulation that killed the economy, and the Dems, to continue the media-endorsed cover-up of their blame, continue adopting policies that further weaken America.

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February 27th 2009

Just Send The Royalty Check To Incredible Wife

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h, the days I wish we had an agent (and a patent attorney) living in the extra bedroom!  The ideas Incredible Wife comes up with can be mind-boggling.

Tonight, we were watching a bit of Glenn Beck as he railed against the various malfeasances of the federal government, and Incredible Wife turned to me – like it was really no big deal at all – and said:

You know what we need?  A reality show that puts a team of federal bureaucrats against a team of private sector entrepreneurs and gives them a big problem to solve. That would really show people what’s wrong with Obama’s vision of government!  The private sector would win every time; they’d need five times as many bureaucrats to hope to come close.

A great idea, even if she is being too kind to the feds.

So, Mr. Hollywood Producer Man, before you put Government Survivor on the air, be sure to sign this little contract here, and make sure you’ve got enough money in the account – ‘cuz if we’re going to have to give 40 percent to PrezO so he can coddle the losers and the lazy, you bet we’re gonna want waaay over $250K for this.

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February 27th 2009

Report From San Diego Tea Party

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hat’s the shredded stimulus bill from the San Diego Tea Party today, snapped by Cheat-Seeking Missiles’ field correspondent Christa – part of our far-flung network of intergalactic correspondents.   Here’s here report; scroll down for lots more photos:

The protest in San Diego was fantastic. There were at least 300 people in attendance (one estimate put it at 500, but that seems a little high), many lining the streets with cleverly sloganed signs protesting the government’s spendthrift plans.

As for what went down – although there were speakers, it was difficult to hear them, so my focus was on the protesters flanking Harbor Drive, shouting “Save Our Country” while they waved American flags and signs of all sizes and colors. Although people were driven by outrage at the government’s actions to protest, the atmosphere was much more friendly than angry. As we sounded off on the error of the Obama-led government’s financial expansion (which is rewarding bad behavior), there was a sense of joy in gathering with like-minded citizens who were willing to take the time to stand up for their beliefs. When the media blares its Obama-friendly tune over and over again, it’s far too easy to feel like we’re the lone Conservatives, so it was really validating to unite with protesters of all ages and races, rallying against the massive government expansion.

Some of the slogans were so clever! Hopefully you can see them in the photos. Amid the protest, someone was blasting music that sounded like parodies poking fun at the stimulus bill; there was also someone who blared the audio clip of Obama saying that any bill would wait on his desk five days for the American people to read online (ironic, considering that Congress didn’t even have five days!). If things don’t change, I have a feeling there will be more protests along these lines – particularly on July 4th. I know I’d be there again in a heartbeat. Totally worth the vacation day! When it comes to stepping up for what’s right and protecting the future for generations, well, nothing is too much to ask, really.

Thanks, Christa!  Job well done.  And thanks to all the patriotic Americans who turned out for the San Diego Tea Party!  Let’s keep it up!

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February 27th 2009

OC’s Little Tea Party

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hat’s Representative Dana Rohrbacher on the left along Rhonda Rohrbacher, and me and Incredible Daughter #1 on the right.  Between us is OC tweet-mate Mark Matthews his wife and youngest son.  Both signs by the Incredible Daughter.

Yes, our chilled-out cold belt neighbors, we did have to wear light jackets at the beach today!

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February 27th 2009

A Video Winner At Watcher!

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or what may be the first time ever, it wasn’t words but pictures (well, pictures of a cartoon saying words) that took a first place in a Watcher of Weasels best ‘o the blogs competition.  And if a picture is worth a thousand words, it’s also worth a couple notches, since my word-laden post on the same topic came in third!

The Nose on Your Face took a first place in the Non-Council category for this fantastic and viciously funny video, Islamic Rage Boy Addresses Muslim TV Exec’s Recent Wife-Beheading:

Runners-up from Non-Council members were The Long War Journal, second place, with Analysis: Pakistan peace agreement cedes ground to the Taliban; a depressing and complete analysis of more horrors from Islam, followed by Chesler Chronicles at Pajamas Media’s A Dutch Hero Comes to Warn Us, Seek Our Support. The Incomparable Geert Wilders, MP, in New York City … hmmm, another post on the horrors of Islam.

We’re on to something here …

Over on the Council side of things, though, the winners’ minds were on other things.  Rhymes With Right was thinking about stupid claims of racism (and equally stupid cartoons), taking first with About The Chimp Cartoon, followed by a three-way tie for second from Council members who were all thinking about Obama’s America: Bookworm Room’s Giving the people what they want, The Razor’s Octomom: A Symbol of Obama’s America, and The Colossus of Rhodey’s Reaction Eric Holder’s “cowards” comment.

See all the winners here.

Thanks, Watcher, for breaking another barrier with that whole “first video ever to win” thing … wow, you’re now a peer of that guy who’s America’s first African-American president.

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February 27th 2009

The Obama Lie Machine

Conversation between Incredible Wife and I has been too much about too little money lately.  A couple years ago, developer clients were pouring a few million dollars a year into our firm as we helped them win approvals for their challenging development projects – now most of them are gone, and we’re getting by with our other excellent and much appreciated lines of business, but it’s just not the same.

We joked last night about missing a few mortgage payments so we’d qualify for a bail-out from the man who walks on water hot air.  Why not go begging for our very own taxpayer-supported present from The “Gifted” One? Our tax dollars are going to pay for others’ mortgage payments, so why not get instead of give? 

Because, of course, it’s dishonest. We can make the payments, and we’ve been in this house for 17 years – we’re hardly flippers.  And also because Prez-O assured us in his Not the State of the Union Speech that his mortgage bailout plan is clean and is “a plan that won’t help speculators or that neighbor down the street who bought a house he could never hope to afford ….” So we surely wouldn’t get away with such a scam, right? Well …

If the administration has come up with a way to ensure money only goes to those who got in honest trouble, it hasn’t said so.

Defending the program Tuesday at a Senate hearing, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said it’s important to save those who made bad calls, for the greater good. He likened it to calling the fire department to put out a blaze caused by someone smoking in bed.

“I think the smart way to deal with a situation like that is to put out the fire, save him from his own consequences of his own action but then, going forward, enact penalties and set tougher rules about smoking in bed.”

Similarly, the head of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. suggested this month it’s not likely aid will be denied to all homeowners who overstated their income or assets to get a mortgage they couldn’t afford.

“I think it’s just simply impractical to try to do a forensic analysis of each and every one of these delinquent loans,” Sheila Bair told National Public Radio.

The source of that – a Town Hall article - is the #1 emailed article on the site today.

Among the other gaffes and flat-out lies called out in the article:  The car-haters in the White House don’t know where the car was invented (it’s Germany, not America), he said we’re importing more oil while we’re importing less, and this gem:

OBAMA: “Thanks to our recovery plan, we will double this nation’s supply of renewable energy in the next three years.”

THE FACTS: While the president’s stimulus package includes billions in aid for renewable energy and conservation, his goal is unlikely to be achieved through the recovery plan alone.

In 2007, the U.S. produced 8.4 percent of its electricity from renewable sources, including hydroelectric dams, solar panels and windmills. Under the status quo, the Energy Department says, it will take more than two decades to boost that figure to 12.5 percent.

Respectfully, the man just makes things up; whatever sounds good and sooooothing, he’ll say it. Less respectfully, he’s a liar and smart folks will question everything he says.

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With Obama winning the presidency by seven percent, we can't blame the media. Their laudatory coverage and refusal to extensively probe into Obama's background and [lack of] experience was at best responsible for five percent of his vote, the pundits tell us. Here is a compilation of over 100 significant instances of pro-Obama/anti-McCain bias during the 2008 campaign.

For all 'Media Bias 2008' – Click Here

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