Friday, October 31, 2008

Obama and Restoration of What?

The Democrats are now the partisan home of the upper crust of the American meritocracy, of the credentialled classes, the classes that believe every endeavour is some variety of IQ test. USA Today did a review of fund-raising data and discovered that Obama dominates fundraising among the leaders of ‘finance, insurance, real estate, health, communications and law’. His campaign has run through hundreds of millions more than McCain’s, and will spend a quarter of a billion dollars on television alone before this election is over. Obama has far more than twice as many ads up in Colorado, Georgia, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia. In Florida, he has run 18,909 ads to McCain’s 5,702. The Democratic party is the vehicle through which, after a populist interlude, the governing classes are proposing to take their country back. Obama is a restoration candidate but that doesn’t mean he has a plan....Obama is On Course for Victory, But He Isn't Ready for the White House, Christopher Caldwell, UK Telegraph, 10/31/2008

Restoration can mean a good thing. After the Oliver Cromwell disaster in 17th century Brtain, restoration meant the return of a stable, predictable state. It was no longer absolutist as, say, Elizabeth the First's regime was, but the new monarchy wasn't an unending parade of wars, rump parliaments, and revolutionary zeal either. There was a restoration in France after Napoleon, which was very good news for most of Europe, overrun and battered for decades. Another restoration came under Konrad Adenauer in postwar western Germany; no one would doubt the importance to all of humanity of that.

But in the case of the Democrats, restoration means the end of values at odds with their own; it means a crushing victory over the essential American idea that individual choice is fundamental, the state a limited necessity, and that success or failure is more dependent on personal will and integrity than on a handout or a social program. The constituencies for statism, a political perception at permanent odds with that idea, have now turned to a man who is a cipher to those unexposed to alternate views of his past, his Marxist mentors, his associations with radicalism as a community organizer, and his allies, domestic and foreign, as a rising politician. To be blunt, in the Democrats' hysterical attacks on Obama's opponents for office, in their disavowal of any alternative view of facts, in their turning to him as a secular savior, combined with astonishingly little consideration of consequences, these elites bear a passing resemblance to those German industrialists who thought a little bit of Hitler wouldn't be such a bad thing. After all, Adolf had smiled charmingly and benevolently upon the burgermeisters and the factory owners. Hitler made such marvelous presentations of hope and joy for the New Germany at enormous political rallies. What matter if his associates had ideas and plans aimed at a completely different objective than the restoration of the old Germany? What had to be ended was the indecency of democracy.


When Silencing Dissent is "Progressive"

Those who see a racist in every non-Obama voter are themselves the people for whom Obama’s race is his defining characteristic. They say in terms that his race is the reason we must vote for him. They are the people who, by smearing every conceivable criticism of Obama or revelation of his unsavoury associations as ‘racist’, have emptied the term of its meaning. They are the people who, posing as ‘progressive’, display daily their utter contempt for their fellow human beings who are apparently incapable of voting against Obama on the rational grounds of the disturbing information they have learned about him, because by definition such information is just a load of racist smears. It cannot be true because there cannot be any dissent...The Politics of Mass Hysteria, Melanie Phillips, UK Spectator, 10/31/2008

You can hardly miss this if you've paid attention to news sources other than CNN. Yesterday it took the form of lifting press credentials for three American news organizations, barring them from Obama's last weekend campaign trip. They dared to editorialize that Senator McCain would be a better choice for President.

The writer remembers a similar hysteria when David Dinkins ran for Mayor of New York. If you were opposed to him because, for instance, just before his candidacy he was doing a work/release program for tax evasion, then you described as a racist. If you pointed out that, as a Democrat, Dinkins was likely to continue the preposterously corrupt practices that had bankrupted the city, the retort would be "it's because he's black that you're saying that." If you pointed out that Dinkins' political perception of the "quiet riot" of black crime would not reduce the city's then-astronomical murder rate, the worst of any large city in the world at the time -- well, you know. The level of corruption escalated because the new Mayor's friends and associates were the same bandits who had populated the Koch mayoralty. The level of murder increased because of a continuing disregard for the connection between small and large crimes (the broken window thesis so brilliantly pursued by Dinkins' successors, which has brought New York's crime rate so low that it's now one of the safest cities in the United States). None of that mattered, though. What did was that a cultivated, intelligent black man, a former Marine, but a man who also bad political alliances and worse political ideas, was assumed to be a better choice than someone with different convictions, simply because he had darker skin.


New Voting Bloc for Obama

John McCain and Barack Obama, if you're wooing a population of registered voters who are young, female and drawn to men in suits, then Allegheny County has 675 ladies ready to pull your lever...They're convicted streetwalkers, escorts and brothel babes collared in 2000 and from 2003-2006, uncovered by the Trib...Based on the prostitutes' voter registration cards, they're destined to become Obama girls in November. That's because 78 percent of them registered as Democrats....Majority of Allegheny Prostitutes are on the Democratic side, Carl Prine, Tribune Review, 10/30/2008

Expect a DNC statement on legalizing prostitution soon.



Thursday, October 30, 2008

Plumbing the Depths with Obama

Joe Wurzelbacher (also known as Joe the Plumber) has learned there's a price to pay for being the one to get Obama to admit that he has a socialist dream to "spread the wealth." Not only are you thrust into the public eye, you get the privilege of having government officials who support Obama rifle through private files looking for dirt on you...Helen Jones-Kelley, director of the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services and a maxed-out contributor to the Obama campaign, has confirmed that she approved the check on Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher after the Oct. 15 presidential debate...Jones-Kelley explained her governmental prying by saying, "Our practice is when someone is thrust quickly into the public spotlight, we often take a look" at them. For example, she cited the case of a lottery winner who was found to owe back child support. But Wurzelbacher didn't win the lottery; he merely asked how much more of his hard-earned money was going to be taxed away under the Obama plan....Obama's Plumbers, The Editors, Investors Business Daily, 10/29/2008

If you wanted to know about that Senator from Illinois's priorities, this tale of how much was invested into investigating the deadly threat of Joe the Plumber's curiosity should be of help.


Fox in the Henhouse: Democrats Fixing the Financial Mess?

Presidential candidate Barack Obama has put free-market capitalism at the root of the current mortgage industry debacle, denying the real history of government interference in that market...On Sept. 15, with banking giant Lehman Bros. filing for bankruptcy protection, Obama was given the opening to begin weaving his anti-capitalist storyline. And that he did. Artfully blurring the mortgage industry crisis with generalized tax policy, Obama declared: "I certainly don't fault Sen. McCain for these problems, but I do fault the economic philosophy he subscribes to. It's a philosophy we've had for the last eight years, one that says we should give more and more to those with the most and hope that prosperity trickles down to everyone else." ...The words were carefully chosen. That day in Colorado marked his return to the teleprompter and a strictly refocused campaign message intent on fusing the mortgage industry woes and free-market capitalism in general...Confident the American people are primed for his brand of "change," Obama maintained his anti-capitalist theme..."What we have seen in the last few days is nothing less than the final verdict on an economic philosophy that has completely failed."...According to Obama, capitalism has been "rendered . . . a colossal failure."....

Contrary to the Obama narrative, however, free-market capitalism is not at the root of the current mortgage industry crisis, but rather the very socialism he hawks. The historical record makes this fact unmistakably clear. Why the Mortgage Crisis Happened, M. Jay Wells, Investors Business Daily, 10/29/2008

What follows is that actual history in great detail. Go to the link and read it all. If you miss this, and listen to the rhetorical frenzy of a crowd-rousing Marxist (see Wonker's citation below), you'll miss the only story that matters. From politicizing markets by enforcing a policy that encouraged loans to anybody on the basis of race, instead of on financial merit, to the furious refusal of Barney Frank and Congress to regulate a gathering storm, it's a horror story whose denouement we're living in right now.

Wake up, sleepers. They're trying to take it all on the basis of lies and rhetoric.


Obamamania a Symptom?

There is something odd -- and dare I say novel -- in American politics about the crowds that have been greeting Barack Obama on his campaign trail. Hitherto, crowds have not been a prominent feature of American politics. We associate them with the temper of Third World societies. We think of places like Argentina and Egypt and Iran, of multitudes brought together by their zeal for a Peron or a Nasser or a Khomeini. In these kinds of societies, the crowd comes forth to affirm its faith in a redeemer: a man who would set the world right...As the late Nobel laureate Elias Canetti observes in his great book, "Crowds and Power" (first published in 1960), the crowd is based on an illusion of equality....Obama and the Politics of Crowds, Fouad Ajami, Wall Street Journal, October 30, 2008

A bitter listing of crowd-oriented politics includes not only Third World dictators like Robert Mugabe, but Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Mao Zedong, Juan and Eva Peron, and Napoleon Bonaparte, whose primary legacies were, or still are, ruins. Crowds, the basis of mob rule, not of democracy, are the most fearsome collective on Earth. They make a school of sharks look pacific.


Cutting to the Obama Chase; or, What Oft Was Thought

My top secret correspondent datamines really good stuff from time to time. Of the following snippet, he opines: "You will neither notice nor care about the following if you hate Bush enough." Adding: "Leave it to a Brit to phrase things so eloquently...and perceptively."

"You have to pinch yourself - a Marxist radical who all his life has been mentored by, sat at the feet of, worshiped with, befriended, endorsed the philosophy of, funded and been in turn funded, politically promoted and supported by a nexus comprising black power anti-white racists, Jew-haters, revolutionary Marxists, unrepentant former terrorists and Chicago mobsters, is on the verge of becoming President of the United States… and apparently it's considered impolite to say so."

- Melanie Philips, The Spectator ( UK ) 10/14/08

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

More on Democrat Plan to Emulate Argentina on 401(k) Accounts

Earlier, we pointed out an article in U.S. News about hearings in Congress on a plan to eliminate 401(k) account tax breaks to recapture the $80 billion dollars in taxes "lost" via these retirement accounts. We weren't kidding.

Powerful House Democrats are eyeing proposals to overhaul the nation’s $3 trillion 401(k) system, including the elimination of most of the $80 billion in annual tax breaks that 401(k) investors receive...House Education and Labor Committee Chairman George Miller, D-California, and Rep. Jim McDermott, D-Washington, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee’s Subcommittee on Income Security and Family Support, are looking at redirecting those tax breaks to a new system of guaranteed retirement accounts to which all workers would be obliged to contribute.House Democrats Contemplate Abolishing 401(k) Tax Breaks, WorkForce Management, 10/16/2008

Yep, it just hurts the Democrat plans to redistribute wealth to their constituents too much! However...

A plan by Teresa Ghilarducci, professor of economic-policy analysis at the New School for Social Research in New York, contains elements that are being considered...Under Ghilarducci’s plan, all workers would receive a $600 annual inflation-adjusted subsidy from the U.S. government but would be required to invest 5 percent of their pay into a guaranteed retirement account administered by the Social Security Administration. The money in turn would be invested in special government bonds that would pay 3 percent a year, adjusted for inflation...The current system of providing tax breaks on 401(k) contributions and earnings would be eliminated....(Absolish 401(k) tax breaks, con'td)

Yep, instead of voluntarily contributing money for property that you have control over, you will be required to contribute a fixed amount. Mandatory volunteerism, anybody?

“I want to stop the federal subsidy of 401(k)s,” Ghilarducci said in an interview. “401(k)s can continue to exist, but they won’t have the benefit of the subsidy of the tax break....”

Trust a professor from a hard left institution like the New School for Social Research to dictate her terms for how other people should invest.

This is what you're looking forward to?



Gov. Paterson Requests Federal Aid, Democrat Assembly Unwilling to Make Cuts

Gov. Paterson grimly declared yesterday that New York faces a historically unprecedented four-year, $47 billion budget deficit, $20 billion higher than projected just three months ago - and will need some form of federal bailout..."In order to address these issues, as New York is really the epicenter of the national crisis of finance, we're going to need federal assistance," said Paterson , as he presented a six-month report on the state's current budget....PATERSON PLEA TO FEDS: RE$CUE US!, Fredric U Dicker, NY Post, 10/29/2008

It had to happen. When you throw $700 billion at losers on Wall Street, you can expect the same kind of beggary from state governments, especially one that gets a third of its tax revenues from the financial services industry, now in its worst mess since the 1930s. With a $122 billion dollar budget in New York State, with no effort to cut spending by an Assembly as profligate as California's, does the accidental governor really expect the Feds to say, 'sure, where do we send the check?' Sadly, unlike the last New York State disaster in the 1970s, the answer is likely to be 'yes, only too happy to comply.' President Bush and the current Congress bear little similarity to former President Ford and the Congress he had to work with. This is what it means when analysts talk about moral risk. When you cave in to one group of con artists and send them money as a reward for their screwing up, every con artist in the country is going to get on the receiving line. The net result will be sharp devaluation of the dollar, and inflation. Back to the Seventies!

The NY Post's editors have a different reaction, worth looking at in part.

[Paterson] is also going to tell lawmakers that the state's economy "is a vital engine" that drives that national economy...Alas, Washington's own cupboard is bare...The good news is that New York's budget is so bloated that finding fat to cut shouldn't really be all that hard...Take school spending. State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli just uncovered more than $400 million that districts squirreled away in various retirement reserve funds...The money apparently isn't needed to pay those costs - and much of it can't even be used for that purpose...It seems these school districts had so much money - from sky-high property taxes and ever-soaring state aid - they didn't know what to do with it all...Overall, state aid to schools is slated to soar 12.3 percent next year. Medicaid, meanwhile, is set to rise 19.6 percent.

Earth to Albany: Think again. A $47 Billion Gap, Editorial, The New York Post, 10/29/2008

Second the motion....


Obama and the Courts, WSJ

One of the great unappreciated stories of the past eight years is how thoroughly Senate Democrats thwarted efforts by President Bush to appoint judges to the lower federal courts...Consider the most important lower federal court in the country: the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. In his two terms as president, Ronald Reagan appointed eight judges, an average of one a year, to this court. They included Robert Bork, Antonin Scalia, Kenneth Starr, Larry Silberman, Stephen Williams, James Buckley, Douglas Ginsburg and David Sentelle. In his two terms, George W. Bush was able to name only four...Although two seats on this court are vacant, Bush nominee Peter Keisler has been denied even a committee vote for two years. If Barack Obama wins the presidency, he will almost certainly fill those two vacant seats...The net result is that the legal left will once again have a majority on the nation's most important regulatory court of appeals...The balance will shift as well on almost all of the 12 other federal appeals courts...On the Supreme Court, six of the current nine justices will be 70 years old or older on January 20, 2009. There is a widespread expectation that the next president could make four appointments in just his first term, with maybe two more in a second term. Here too we are poised for heavy change...These numbers ought to raise serious concern because of Mr. Obama's extreme left-wing views about the role of judges. He believes -- and he is quite open about this -- that judges ought to decide cases in light of the empathy they ought to feel for the little guy in any lawsuit....Obama's 'Redistribution' Constitution, Stephen Calabresi, The Wall Street Journal, 10/28/2008

You know, the little guy who doesn't like guns, the little guy who wants his pregnant girlfriend to have an abortion, the little guy who claims that the finger he scalded at a fast food restaurant is worth ten million dollars, the little guy who wants to sue General Electric because a UFO landed on his porch...don't be fooled. Most of all the "little guy" is a Democrat after money someone else has earned.


Thomas Sowell on Justice and Obama

Senator Obama has stated very clearly what kinds of Supreme Court justices he wants-- those with "the empathy to understand what it's like to be poor, or African-American, or gay, or disabled, or old."...Like so many things that Obama says, it may sound nice if you don't stop and think -- and chilling if you do stop and think. Do we really want judges who decide cases based on who you are, rather than on the facts and the law?...Obama and the Law, Thomas Sowell, 10/28/2008

Thomas Sowell's pursuit of the truth about this year's Democrat savior is one for the books, and one expects a book to come out of it. For those in doubt about the value of future Supreme Court appointments and its bearing on their choices in the election, read this column.


Malkin's Top 5 Obamamedia Picks

We'll give you one; you can look at the rest.

1) The Los Angeles Times and the suppressed Obama/Jew-bash videotape.

In April, L.A. Times reporter Peter Wallsten reported on a 2003 farewell party for Rashid Khalidi, a radical Palestinian Liberation Organization spokesman/adviser turned Ivy League professor. The anti-Israel Arab American Action Network sponsored the gala. In attendance: good neighbors Barack Obama and Weather Underground terrorist duo Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn...Wallsten reported that the "event was videotaped, and a copy of the tape was obtained by The Times." But the news organization refuses to let readers watch the video of Obama and his left-wing terrorist friends and will not release the tape. It's "old news" now...The paper had no problem, however, embedding a video clip of Sarah Palin's 1984 swimsuit pageant on its gossip blog and deeming it newsworthy....Notororious Obama Moments of 2008, Michelle Malkin,, 10/29/2008

When a great paper becomes a schill for a single point of view, it's just another version of Pravda, the newspaper of record of the defunct Soviet Union. But, read Malkin's greatest hits anyway.


Dems and Military Vote: If You Can't Win, Cheat

As absentee ballots pour in from U.S. troops overseas, officials are voicing concerns that many of those votes won't be counted..."It's dismal," said Rosemary Rodriguez, who works for the U.S. Elections Assistance Commission, a non-partisan group. "These are the voters that are in some cases preserving our liberties and out there with their lives on the line."...Rodriguez estimates that in the last general election, only about 30 percent of overseas military ballots were actually returned and counted...Ballots from US Troops Risk Being Discarded, CNN, 10/28/2008

It's no secret that 60-70% of serving military men and women favor John McCain. That's a potential of 700,000 or more votes. Spread across the right states, it could dramatically impact the election. Apparently, the DNC believes that if they can't win a constituency, they should ban it from voting. This is evidently another example of Democrat fairness.


Monday, October 27, 2008

Government Intervention or Bust?

The U.S. stock market has lost 1,417 points--a decline of nearly $3 trillion in value--since President Bush signed into law a $700-billion financial industry bailout bill that was supported by both the Republican and Democratic presidential candidates....Stock Market Has Fallen Steadily Since Bailout Bill Signed, Matt Cover, CNS News

Somehow, the thought of a President and Congress devoted to a lot more of this, including seizing your 401(k), you know, the nest egg you've worked for the last thirty years (see below), is not comforting.


Hillary's Odds Knocked Down by Frauds?

With accusations of voter registration fraud swirling as early voting begins in many states, some Hillary Clinton supporters are saying: “I told you so.” Already in Iowa, the Obama campaign was breaking the rules, busing in supporters from neighboring states to vote illegally in the first contest in the primaries and physically intimidating Hillary supporters, they say...Obama’s surprisingly strong win in Iowa, which defied all the polls, propelled his upstart candidacy to front-runner status. But Lynette Long, a Hillary supporter from Bethesda, Md., who has a long and respected academic career, believes Obama’s victory in Iowa and in twelve other caucus states was no miracle...Long has spent several months studying the caucus and primary results...“After studying the procedures and results from all 14 caucus states, interviewing dozens of witnesses, and reviewing hundreds of personal stories, my conclusion is that the Obama campaign willfully and intentionally defrauded the American public by systematically undermining the caucus process,” she said...Hillary Backers Decry Massive Obama Vote Fraud, Kenneth Timmerman, Newsmax, 10/25/2008

It's true that cries of "fraud at the polls" predate Tammany Hall's great days. There's probably a similar phrase in classic Greek. However, the caucus game, which turned the primaries into an Obama triumph despite the loss of a number of state popular votes, is one of the truly ugly political stories of 2008. It's even bigger than dead people voting in Cook County in 1960. As somebody's saying goes, who you emulate may determine how you act, whether Hugo Chavez, or the real JFK.


ABC News Reporter on MSM's Career-Driven Bias

The traditional media are playing a very, very dangerous game -- with their readers, with the Constitution and with their own fates. The media have covered this presidential campaign with a bias and that ultimately could lead to its downfall. The sheer bias in the print and television coverage of this election campaign is not just bewildering, but appalling. And over the last few months I've found myself slowly moving from shaking my head at the obvious one-sided reporting, to actually shouting at the screen of my television and my laptop computer. But worst of all, for the last couple weeks, I've begun -- for the first time in my adult life -- to be embarrassed to admit what I do for a living...Media's Presidential Bias and Decline, Michael S. Malone, ABC News, 10/24/2008

This is a message that should have been obvious to bloggers a long time ago. It's the old cornered animal story. When the porcupine can't get away, that's when quills start to fly. Fact is, network news of any variety, except for, has had a declining audience for decades. The fragmentation of news sources, starting nearly forty years ago with CNN, but now with thousands of blogs, multiple cable networks, has made the actor reading the network executive's approved copy mostly irrelevant. (Quick, name your top five network anchors.) More significantly, it's made the network executive in the news division, and the news division itself, increasingly irrelevant to the network's future. The conversion from efforts to report all the facts of a story to sensationalism was the first step.

I watched with disbelief as the nation's leading newspapers, many of whom I'd written for in the past, slowly let opinion pieces creep into the news section, and from there onto the front page. Personal opinions and comments that, had they appeared in my stories in 1979, would have gotten my butt kicked by the nearest copy editor, were now standard operating procedure at the New York Times, the Washington Post, and soon after in almost every small town paper in the U.S. ...(Media's Presidential Bias...(cont'd))

The writer stopped reading the NY Times in 2000 after the Presidential election, figuring trade fiction was probably more interesting if purchased in the fiction section of a bookstore. Those writers are at least professionally engaged by telling tall tales. The next step, all the more disturbing, is becoming the New Pravda, one-sided news sources that deny the existence of any other view.

Republicans are justifiably foaming at the mouth over the sheer one-sidedness of the press coverage of the two candidates and their running mates. But in the last few days, even Democrats, who have been gloating over the pass -- no, make that shameless support -- they've gotten from the press, are starting to get uncomfortable as they realize that no one wins in the long run when we don't have a free and fair press...what I object to (and I think most other Americans do as well) is the lack of equivalent hardball coverage of the other side -- or worse, actively serving as attack dogs for the presidential ticket of Sens. Barack Obama, D-Ill., and Joe Biden, D-Del...If the current polls are correct, we are about to elect as president of the United States a man who is essentially a cipher, who has left almost no paper trail, seems to have few friends (that at least will talk) and has entire years missing out of his biography...That isn't Sen. Obama's fault: His job is to put his best face forward. No, it is the traditional media's fault, for it alone (unlike the alternative media) has had the resources to cover this story properly, and has systematically refused to do so....(Media's Presidential Bias...(cont'd))

What's noteworthy additionally is that a public treated to only one side of a story, as if there were no other, may give an equally false response to a polltaker's question. This was standard fare in the Soviet Union. The only honest answers you could get would come in a private party where the room had been scanned for microphones, and then only after months, or even years, of developing trust. Toward the end of the Bolshevik regime, the assumption on the street, widely reported, was that nobody in official circles, or in the press, told anything but lies. Is this what the media wants?

Picture yourself in your 50s in a job where you've spent 30 years working your way to the top, to the cockpit of power & only to discover that you're presiding over a dying industry. The Internet and alternative media are stealing your readers, your advertisers and your top young talent...Your job doesn't have anywhere near the power and influence it did when your started your climb. The Newspaper Guild is too weak to protect you any more...In other words, you are facing career catastrophe -- and desperate times call for desperate measures...And then the opportunity presents itself -- an attractive young candidate whose politics likely matches yours, but more important, he offers the prospect of a transformed Washington with the power to fix everything that has gone wrong in your career...With luck, this monolithic, single-party government will crush the alternative media via a revived Fairness Doctrine, re-invigorate unions by getting rid of secret votes, and just maybe be beholden to people like you in the traditional media for getting it there...And besides, you tell yourself, it's all for the good of the country...((Media's Presidential Bias...(cont'd))

Believe it.


Friday, October 24, 2008

Obama and Your 401(k)

I hate to use the "S" word, but the American government would never do something as, well, socialist as seize private pension funds, right? This is exactly what cash-strapped Argentina just did in the name of protecting workers' retirement accounts (Efharisto, Fausta's Blog). Now, even Uncle Sam isn't that stupid, but some Democrats might try something almost as loopy: kill 401(k) plans....Would Obama, Dems Kill 401 (k) Plans?, US News Capital Commerce, James Pethokoukis, 10/23/2008

You aren't surprised, are you? Obama's fellow Chicagoan, Jesse Jackson, has been talking about "unjust, untaxed resources" for years. He wasn't talking about his son's Annheuser-Busch Beer franchise. He was talking about IRA's and 401(k)'s, you know, those investment vehicles tens of millions of Americans have as insurance against a badly managed, overindebted Social 'Security" system. As an ACORN community organizer might say at a rally, "there's 5 trillion in money we don't have in those accounts."


Palin: The Feminist Straw Woman

A few months ago Vanity Fair ran an article about the discovery that the playwright Arthur Miller, with his third wife, the photographer Inge Morath, 40 or so years ago had a Down syndrome son. Miller promptly clapped the boy into an institution...and never saw the child again. Most people would have taken this for a heartless act...on the part of a man known for excoriating the putative cruelties of capitalism and the endless barbarities of his own country's governments...Yet, so far as one can tell, Arthur Miller's treatment of his own child has not put the least dent in his reputation, while Sarah Palin's having, keeping, and loving her Down syndrome child is somehow, by the standard of the liberal woman of our day, not so secretly thought the act of an obviously backward and ignorant woman, an affront to womanhood. "Her greatest hypocrisy," proclaimed Wendy Doniger, one of the leading feminist lights at the University of Chicago, "is her pretense that she is a woman."...Loathing Sarah Palin, Joseph Epstein, Weekly Standard, 10/24/2008

The attacks on Governor Palin by feminists (with the notable exception of Senator Clinton, who has restricted critical remarks of the Alaskan Governor to the usual and facetious subject of experience) are not very puzzling. As the noted essayist Joseph Epstein suggests in this essay, it's not very different from accusations of witchcraft in 17th century Salem, transference of jealousy into divine rage.


Russell vs. Murtha Update, Michelle Malkin

The symbol of everything wrong with Washington is 18-term Democratic Rep. John Murtha, king of congressional pork and infamous Abscam sting target who was videotaped entertaining a $50,000 bribe from undercover FBI agents posing as emissaries for Arab sheiks trying to enter our country illegally in the 1980s. Most recently, in June, the Democratic porkmeister was caught intervening on behalf of a law-breaking Pennsylvania company convicted of selling military equipment parts illegally overseas and knowingly violating national-security rules...The champion for hope and change is GOP challenger Bill Russell, a Desert Storm veteran, former Army lieutenant colonel and Army reservist who survived the September 11 terrorist attack on the Pentagon...Republicans face tough odds across the country. A Russell upset over the nation’s dirtiest Democrat promises a silver lining. Murtha’s constituents are ready to throw the bum out. And not a moment too soon....Booting John Murtha, Michelle Malkin, National Review, 10/24/2008

Thanks to Michelle Malkin for showing this to the rest of the world. Read the whole, inspiring story. There are some reporters out there. Not every byline belongs to a DNC official.


Back to the Seventies?

A newcomer to national politics, he claimed to transcend partisan labels. He moved to the center during the campaign, at a time when the Democrats held large congressional majorities. In a troubled economy, he told voters he would keep taxes down for most Americans, limit spending, and balance the budget, all while implementing ambitious social programs. He planned to cut military spending to free money for other purposes, but assured moderates and conservatives that when it came to America’s enemies, he would be tougher than the Republicans. The media, droves of moderates, and some conservatives believed him, having pegged him as a man of character...His name was Jimmy Carter, the year was 1976, and he won. His presidency helps us predict the likely results of an Obama victory in 2008.....1976 is Back, Mark Moyar, National Review, 10/24/2008

Glad somebody said it! Oil shock, financial mess, endless bear market, the Fonz (older and dumber?), wind power, refusal to develop our own oil resources -- sounds familiar to anyone over 50. Yep, Moyar hit the nail on its head. Is anybody paying attention? In 1976, the choice was clear, a sober, levelheaded, fiscal conservative vs. a rhetorical empty suit. For mysterious reasons, American believed the latter. We know the results. Unlike television shows, political reruns get worse with time.


Quote of the Day: Media Bias

There turns out to be no standard of objectivity in contemporary journalism. Palin’s career as a city councilwoman, mayor, and governor of Alaska was never seen as comparable to, or — indeed, in terms of executive experience — more extensive than, Barack Obama’s own legislative background in Illinois and Washington. Somehow we forgot that a mother of five taking on the Alaskan oil industry and the entrenched male hierarchy was somewhat more challenging than Barack Obama navigating the sympathetic left-wing identity politics of Chicago....An Instructive Candidacy: What Sarah Palin Taught Us About Ourselves, Victor Davis Hanson, National Review, 10/24/2008

Victor Davis Hanson is a military historian and classicist.

Note to Obama: Capitalism Works in Aviation

An American firm is on the cusp of re-imagining the supersonic dream and confidently plans to have supersonic commercial aircraft back in the skies as a reality by 2015....The New Concorde: Supersonic jet will get you from New York to London in Three Hours, Daily Mail, 10/23/2008

The original Concorde, heavily subsidized from design to flight and throughout thirty years of operation, lost billions of dollars for its builders and operators. Finally, overwhelmed by its financial problems, the brilliant first SST was retired. Now what? A privately organized and financed American company, Aerion, has taken fifty deposits on a 12-seat, supersonic business jet it will bring to service in four years. It will serve approximately the same crowd the Concorde did, at greatly reduced cost, both financially and environmentally. It will also meet noise standards for modest supersonic flight, as it sheds no supersonic boom at speeds up to Mach 1.15.

Hmmm. Maybe NASA, the vastly subsidized American space agency, should be turned over to Aerion. The Mars mission might be fulfilled in five years instead of twenty.


Greenspanning The Crash?

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan's congressional testimony yesterday on the economic crisis was surreal. During his appearance before the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee, Mr. Greenspan, and Committee Chairman Henry Waxman of California and other Democrats, spent much of their time dancing around the political decisions that created the subprime-mortgage-market collapse. This behavior should not come as much of a surprise. Both Mr. Greenspan and the liberal Democrats who control the committee have important reasons not to delve too deeply into the role of Congress in pushing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to the brink of collapse, a financial catastrophe that will cost taxpayers $200 billion....Whitewashing Fannie Mae, Freddie, Editors, The Washington Times, 10/24/2008

Easy money -- for all of the obfuscations of Alan Greenspan, a linguistic style well-known from any lifelong bureaucrat, those two words define the spirit that created the current crash, with its driving factors of defaulted subprime mortgages and all of the mortgage-based securities built on that cardboard foundation. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were encouraged by the Democrats to guarantee mortgages that would not otherwise have been given, but the flood of cheap money that made such faulty instruments possible was provided by decisions of the Federal Reserve when Greenspan was Chairman. However, even he made an effort to stop the political manipulation of mortgage risk.

During this period, Mr. Greenspan called for reforming the GSEs. In testimony before the Senate Banking Committee on Feb. 24, 2004, for example, he called on Congress to place limits on the size of Fannie and Freddie's portfolios in order to restrict their issuance of debt. But Congress failed to listen, and the Bush administration lacked the political muscle to pressure it to do so. Instead of reining in the GSEs, powerful members of Congress put pressure on Fannie and Freddie to massively expand investment in financially risky "affordable" housing projects from 2005 to 2007, ultimately triggering the GSEs' collapses. Irresponsible politicians — not "market failure" — bear primary blame for these financial disasters....(Whitewashing Fannie Mae...cont'd)

Don't expect to see a position paper on that from the DNC or from Obama's media campaign.


Obama Not Civil Service Material?

How many of politicians have a single tie to either group, much less seven of them? John McCain charitably calls Obama "a person you do not have to be scared [of] as president of the United States," but Obama's multiple links to anti-Americans and subversives mean he would fail the standard security clearance process for Federal employees...Islamic aggression represents America's strategic enemy; Obama's many insalubrious connections raise grave doubts about his fitness to serve as America's commander-in-chief...Obama Would Fail Security Clearance, Daniel Pipes, 10/21/2008

You haven't heard much of this, because discussion of it is banned by the "free" press representatives at MSM. But you ought to look further and decide for yourself if a friend of CAIR is a good prospect for occupant of the White House.


Thursday, October 23, 2008

Obama and Soros Interview

Senator Barack Obama treaded onto Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton’s home turf last night to meet with prominent Democratic donors and feel out those who might prefer the sound of President Obama to President Clinton (as in Hillary, not Bill).

Amid intensifying presidential musings by Mr. Obama and Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Obama met with George Soros, the liberal billionaire philanthropist, then some other donors last night at Mr. Soros’s offices. Afterward he spoke at a charity event that was to be followed by a news conference.

One of the donors who met with Mr. Obama, and who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he did not want to offend Mrs. Clinton, said that he and several others had supported Mrs. Clinton’s Senate campaigns but were not committed to her as a presidential candidate....Obama Meets Party Donors in New York, Patrick Healy, NY Times, 12/5/2006

Some wag might express surprise that the "newspaper of record" left that item on their Web archives. Don't forget what George Soros's connection to American politics is. In 2004, he spent millions to try and stop President Bush's reelection. In the 1990s he deliberately undercut, and forced the devaluation of, the British pound. He has long worked with groups and individuals openly hostile to the United States. His thinking should sound familiar, as in this quote from a speech to the Jewish Funders Conference in 2003.

'There is a resurgence of anti-Semitism in Europe. The policies of the Bush administration and the Sharon administration contribute to that,' Soros said. “If we change that direction, then anti-Semitism also will diminish,” he said. “I can’t see how one could confront it directly.' Do We Have to Listen When a Billionaire Speaks?,

No doubt the policies of the Roosevelt Administration in the 1940s caused a rise in anti-Semitism in Germany...what can we hope for from a future President with allies like this?


Obama, Alinsky, ACORN, Gramsci: Just Good Neighbors

Obama was trained by the Alinsky-founded Industrial Areas Foundation (IAF) in Chicago and worked for an affiliate of the Gamaliel Foundation, whose modus operandi for the creation of ‘a more just and democratic society’ is rooted firmly in the Alinsky method. As The Nation magazine puts it, ‘Obama worked in the organizing tradition of Saul Alinsky, who made Chicago the birthplace of modern community organizing...’ In fact, for several years Obama himself taught workshops on the Alinsky method...But Obama brought a special slant to Alinsky’s radicalism. Far from being – as he has been painted – a ‘post-racial’ politician, Obama’s politics are all about promoting the cause of black people and achieving ‘reparations’ from white society (a perspective through which his whole welfare redistribution agenda is framed). Accordingly, he saw his three-year role as a community organiser in Chicago as mobilising black people for action against their white oppressors. Finding himself hampered in creating an activist network among black churches, he decided to join such a church to give himself more credibility. That’s why he joined the infamous black-power Trinity Church of Christ – a move, it seems, that had less to do with any spiritual quest than as a radical tactic for mobilising the black proletariat....Revolution You Can Believe In, Melanie Phillips, The Spectator, 9/9/2008

And you thought Wonker was bonkers for suggesting such a thing. Phillips' concluding paragraph is a warning beacon.

In both America and Britain, Gramsci’s acolytes have been conducting a decades-long march through the institutions. In Britain, they have substantially achieved their aim of subverting western morality and changing the face of British society. No political party stands against this. In the US, they have made huge inroads but haven’t yet won. With Palin on one side and Obama on the other, it is now clear that this US presidential election has taken the culture war to the gates of the White House itself....(Phillips...cont'd)

Who knew?

Not CNN, NBC, CBS, ABC, PBS, The NY Times, The Washington Post...but you do.


25 Years Ago Today

October 23, 1983.

On that day, 241 U.S. Marines, soldiers, and sailors were murdered as they slept by truck bomb jihadists — who were waging a war on us long before we woke up and started fighting the war on them.

Barack Obama thinks they need more “compassion” and education. He wants to pull out and “end” the war, not win it.

A recipe, in other words, for more Beirut bombings...The Beirut Barracks Bombings: 25 Years Ago Today, Michelle Malkin, 10/22/08

Thank you, Michelle Malkin, for reminding us. Then-President Reagan negotiated with the terrorists shortly after the bombing by ordering the USS New Jersey to use its 16 inch guns on their bases and training camps. We know what Senator McCain would do. What would Senator Obama do? Perhaps a nice lunch?


The Wisdom of Palin Critics

She is not a woman. A woman knows how to give birth to another life. Motherhood. She is a monster. Guantánamo is a paradise if compared to her crimes against nature....Viewer comment on YouTube to video of caribou hunting

If this is the caliber of intelligence for a reported majority of voters who will try to put Obama and Biden in the White House, Alaska sounds like it might be a nice place to live, even in winter.


Home Grown Energy in Short Political Supply

"The lifting of the ban on drilling for oil and oil shale doesn't mean the end of the fight for clean energy, which Big Oil and its allies have exploited for their own gain," said Frances Beinecke, president of Natural Resources Defense Council. "We look to the next Congress and a new president to reverse course and deliver a clean, homegrown energy future."...Congress Allows Offshore Drilling Ban to Expire, ENS, 9/30/2008

In case you didn't know, to Democrats and to the tiny minority they allow to control decisions on domestic energy source development, "clean" energy means non-oil. And Big Oil is the terrible villain that's brought us the energy supplies that underpin our civilization. If you seriously believe big propellers in the sky are going to get your Prius from New York to San Francisco, you probably also believe that elephants are agents of Satan.


Obama to Give More Credit Cards to Subprime Mortgage Holders?

The problems on Wall Street, our energy woes, the election-year fight over taxes versus more programs, and the housing crash have one common denominator: massive debt. They are simply the collective reflections of our own spendthrift habits of buying things with borrowed money that we now either can’t or don’t want to pay back....It's the Economy, Stupid, Victor Davis Hanson, National Review Online

If Salvador Dali had been alive to paint this year's election campaign, the background for campaign posters might have included melting caricatures of the candidates. Why is it that neither Senator is willing to conduct pitched battle on the subject of government and private debt?

Victor Davis Hanson, the military historian and classicist, has no such qualms. Read his article at the link. It's a sharp, wise description of what has gone wrong and why. A campaign of fabulations is no campaign at all.


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

That Was the Week That Was

Gee, I'm showing my age--our headline was the theme of the British telly show that inspired the news segment of our own "Laugh In" TV series. That, in turn, spawned the more elaborate news segment on Saturday Night Live. You know, the one that used to be funny but is now engineered as weekly fuel to support NBC's 24/7 effort to obliterate the Republican Party in this election.

But that's not why we're penning one of HazZzMat's continually difficult-to-write posts today. It's just to indicate that I'll be putting up what are hopefully relatively succinct posts on the current Wall Street shenanigans, how they tie in with language and electioneering, and how we are, as a nation, about to succumb to the utter triumph of Gramscian chicanery.

I've been away again for awhile due to the continuing problems involving the Wonkers' remaining parental unit, Mrs. Wonker's dad. (The rest of those units, alas, have departed over the last year and a half, probably due in part to needing to leave a world that they could no longer remotely comprehend.)

Additionally, I've been at the computer for what seems like my own 24/7 gig trying to salvage my investment portfolio so I can have a retirement. Aggressive trading has gotten back over 25% of my disastrous portfolio losses over the last 3 days, although today it looks like the market is swooning again. Given that I used to be a professional at this, I'm confident I can at least get back to even over the next 12 months, but God knows what the average dude is thinking out there right now.

Sadly, he's probably thinking about pulling the lever for Obama in about 3 weeks. This would complete the triumph of the most intensely organized far left attack on American democracy that this country has ever seen. Unfortunately, John Q. Public is not seeing this and is buying the line that everything is Bush's fault. And concluding that the only way to wreak revenge and salvation is by banishing the Repubs and putting in the Democrats Socialists.

Wrong answer. Stay tuned. We'll get there.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Fey Palin? Or the Real Sarah

Just a thought tonight after watching the VP debate. (On Fox, of course, so I wouldn't have to listen to MSM sniping and condescension.) Biden acquitted himself well, but played pretty fast and loose with the facts as many are pointing out. Palin was stiff at the outset, too much verbiage out of the briefing book. But she loosened up and once again became the lethal weapon that the recent NBC and ABC interviews took great pains to muffle. Hopefully, it's not too late to salvage the flagging McCain campaign once again with a bit of sass and energy. Time to make Baked Alaska out of the Obama camp for once and for all.

Meanwhile, is it my imagination, or is every single flavor of NBC/CNN outlet providing substantially more footage of Tina Fey playing Palin than they are providing actual footage of Palin herself? Or is it just me?