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Saturday, April 25, 2009
Cap and Trade: A Great Big Tax
Chairman Emeritus of Energy and Commerce Committee, John Dingell (D-MI), calls cap and trade as it is: Nobody in this country realizes that cap and trade is a tax, and its a great big one.
Tags:CAP, cap-and-trade, energy, energy tax, John Dingell, Tax, TradeTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Gun Owners of America:-- Even BB guns could be on the chopping block -- Remember CANDIDATE Barack Obama? The guy who “wasn’t going to take away our guns”? Well, guess what? Less than 100 days into his administration, he’s never met a gun he didn’t hate.
A week ago, Obama went to Mexico, whined about the United States, and bemoaned (before the whole world) the fact that he didn’t have the political power to take away our semi-automatics. Nevertheless, that didn’t keep him from pushing additional restrictions on American gun owners.
It’s called the Inter-American Convention Against Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Ammunition, Explosives, and Other Related Materials. To be sure, this imponderable title masks a really nasty piece of work. First of all, when the treaty purports to ban the “illicit” manufacture of firearms, what does that mean?
1. “Illicit manufacturing” of firearms is defined as “assembly of firearms [or] ammunition ... without a license....” Hence, reloading ammunition -- or putting together a lawful firearm from a kit -- is clearly “illicit manufacturing.” Modifying a firearm in any way would surely be “illicit manufacturing.” And, while it would be a stretch, assembling a firearm after cleaning it could, in any plain reading of the words, come within the screwy definition of “illicit manufacturing.”
2. “Firearm” has a similarly questionable definition. “[A]ny other weapon” is a “firearm,” according to the treaty -- and the term “weapon” is nowhere defined. So, is a BB gun a “firearm”? Probably. A toy gun? Possibly. A pistol grip or firing pin? Probably. And who knows what else.
If these provisions (and others) become the law of the land, the Obama administration could have a heyday in enforcing them. Consider some of the other provisions in the treaty:
* Banning reloading. In Article IV of the treaty, countries commit to adopting “necessary legislative or other measures” to criminalize illicit manufacturing and trafficking in firearms. Remember that “illicit manufacturing” includes reloading and modifying or assembling a firearm in any way. This would mean that the Obama administration could promulgate regulations banning reloading on the basis of this treaty -- just as it is currently circumventing Congress to write legislation taxing greenhouse gases.
* Banning gun clubs. Article IV goes on to state that the criminalized acts should include “association or conspiracy” in connection with said offenses -- which is arguably a term broad enough to allow, by regulation, the criminalization of entire pro-gun organizations or gun clubs, based on the facilities which they provide their membership.
* Extraditing US gun dealers. Article V requires each party to “adopt such measures as may be necessary to establish its jurisdiction over the offenses it has established in accordance with this Convention” under a variety of circumstances.
We know that Mexico is blaming U.S. gun dealers for the fact that its streets are flowing with blood. And we know it is possible for Mexico to define offenses “committed in its territory” in a very broad way. And we know that we have an extradition obligation under Article XIX of the proposed treaty. So we know that Mexico could try to use the treaty to demand to extradition of American gun dealers.
Under Article XXIX, if Mexico demands the extradition of a lawful American gun dealer, the U.S. would be required to resolve the dispute through “other means of peaceful settlement.” Does anyone want to risk twenty years in a sweltering Mexican jail on the proposition that the Obama administration would apply this provision in a pro-gun manner?
* Microstamping. Article VI requires “appropriate markings” on firearms. And, it is not inconceivable that this provision could be used to require microstamping of firearms and/or ammunition -- a requirement which is clearly intended to impose specifications which are not technologically possible or which are possible only at a prohibitively expensive cost.
* Gun registration. Article XI requires the maintenance of any records, for a “reasonable time,” that the government determines to be necessary to trace firearms. This provision would almost certainly repeal portions of McClure-Volkmer and could arguably be used to require a national registry or database.
ACTION:Contact your senators! Urge them to oppose the Inter-American Convention Against Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Ammunition, Explosives, and Other Related Materials. You may also use the Gun Owners Legislative Action Center to send your Senators the pre-written e-mail message. See also:GOA's CIFTA Treaty Analysis Tags:Barack Obama, GAO, Gun Owners of America, treaty, banning reloading, CIFTA, United States, MexicoTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
by Kerby Anderson, Point of View: Although politicians talk about the Social Security "trust fund," the reality is that it is neither. There was no "trust" and there is really is no "fund." Each Congress has spent the surpluses that were supposed to be set aside for when the baby boom generation began to retire.
Economist Kevin Hassett has found something else. The surpluses that once fed this imaginary trust fund are now gone. Due to the current recession, the fund is now negative. Payroll receipts are down because fewer people are working. Essentially, the trust fund has gone into the red about ten years ahead of schedule. The latest government numbers confirm this. This year, it is estimated that Social Security will take in $654 billion in payroll taxes and pay out $662 billion in benefits and expenses. That is a shortfall of $8 billion.
The response from the Social Security Administration is that even though there is a shortfall, Social Security is not running a deficit. It turns out that the interest the government owes itself for borrowing (and spending) the surpluses will provide an additional revenue stream. So even though there is a shortfall, Social Security isn't running a deficit . . . yet.
While all of this is true, some members of Congress are starting to object to this accounting sleight-of-hand. And all this does is postpone the inevitable. By the next decade, the bulk of baby boomers will have begun their retirements. The only way to have been able to fund the millions of boomer retirees, would be to have a real trust fund not a fictitious one. Each year Congress spent the money in the trust fund. And now a recession has removed any last pretense of there being money for future retirees.
I don't think most Americans really care whether the Social Security trust fund is technically broke. They just want to know if their Social Security will be there for them. The reality is that each year, more retirees will be drawing on funds that aren't there. For some reason, no one in the administration will tell you the truth. I just did. I'm Kerby Anderson, and that's my point of view. Tags:congress, Kerby Anderson, Point of View, social security, trust fundTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Breaking News: Mexican Flu Outbreak Alert - No Border Security
Received a heads up form ALIPAC which is tracking news and CDC concerning a possible Flu pandemic breaking out in Mexico. At this time, there is no indication of any additional border security being implemented to protect the lives of US citizens. Checking wire and news sources revealed that the White House is closely following the outbreak in the United States and President Barack Obama has been informed.
Reuters reported that a strain of flu never seen before has killed up to 60 people in Mexico and also appeared in the United States, where eight people were infected but recovered. Mexico's government said at least 20 people have died of the flu and it may also be responsible for 40 other deaths.
Various wire service are reporting that The Geneva-based World Health Organization said tests showed the virus from 12 of the Mexican patients was the same genetically as a new strain of swine flu, designated H1N1, seen in eight people in California and Texas. Howevever, an analysis by the Center for Desease Control showed the disease is a mixture of swine, human and avian viruses. Mexico reported 1,004 suspected cases of the new virus, including four possible cases in Mexicali on the border with California.
World Health Organization said it was in daily contact with U.S., Canadian and Mexican authorities and had activated its command and control center for acute public health events. Most of the dead were aged between 25 and 45, a health official said. It was a worrying sign as seasonal flu can be more deadly among the very young and the very old but a hallmark of pandemics is that they affect healthy young adults.
The CDC said it will issue daily updateshere Tags:border control, Canada, CDC, Center for Disease Control, fluorescent light, Mexico, pandemic, swine flu, United States, World Health organizationTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Wish we had Reagan back again - I slept comfortable at night! Now, I fear our own government, And consider the present situations in the world; for example, nukes could fall into the hands of the Taliban in Pakistan. Again, none of these would have happened with Reagan.
Tags:Ronald Reagan, Taliban, terrorismTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Senate bill would give President Obama authority over all networks. Sens. Jay Rockefeller. D-WV, and Olympia Snowe, R-MN introduced the Cybersecurity Act of 2009 (SB773), which would permit the White House to declare a "cybersecurity emergency" and shut down or limit Internet traffic in any network the president declares "critical." A companion bill (SB778), creates the new "cybersecurity czar" to take his place among the troubling number of similarly named posts in this administration.
If the Cybersecurity Act of 2009 passes, the president will have authority to shut down Internet traffic for "national security." The bill's language also allows the commerce secretary to "access all relevant data" on those "critical" networks "without regard to any provision of law, regulation, rule, or policy restricting such access." The bill as currently written provides zero structural oversight over the proposed broad new executive branch powers. Thus, President Obama would also have access to digital data from industries including banking, communications and even the energy grid. Under the bill there would be a cybersecurity czar inside the White House. So far this isn't being reported much outside of business circles. If George W. Bush had sought this kind of authority the ACLU would have rightly gone nuts; where are they now? [Full Story -by James G. Lakely, San Francisco Chronicle " Don't put feds in charge of the Internet"]Tags:Barack Obama, cybersecurity, Cybersecurity Act 2009, Czar, internet, networksTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Harvard Chaplain Approves Death Sentence For Converting From Islam - #CALH
H/T to William Murray,Chairman Religious Freedom Coalition for this heads up on an situation identified earlier this month at Harvard University: Imagine the outrage if a Christian chaplain called for even mild discipline of those who violate the tenants of Christianity. It would be on the front page of every newspaper in America. But when the Muslim chaplain at Harvard University said the death penalty was "appropriate" for those converting from Islam, the media showed no interest at all. Muslim students at Harvard who disagreed with the chaplain refused to give their names out of fear of the "Islamic community." [Read Full Story: The Harvard Crimnson: "Chaplain’s E-mail Sparks Controversy"] Tags:chaplain, conversion, Harvard University, Islam, Islamic law, William J. MurrayTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Tags:Americans for Limited Government, Energy Crisis, environment, Global Warming Fraud, political cartoon, William WarrenTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
On Monday, the Senate will return to a bill to crack down on financial fraud, S. 386. Last night, Reid filed for cloture on the bill.
Yesterday, senators voted on seven motions to instruct conferees on the budget resolution (S. Con. Res. 13). Though the motions are non-binding, two that were approved are worth noting. The Senate agreed to a motion from Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE) to instruct conferees include language prohibiting the use of reconciliation for climate change legislation (this is now the second time a majority of the Senate has voted this way). The Senate also agreed to a motion from Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) to require that future energy legislation not increase the cost of domestic energy production or increase energy costs for families.
H.R. 1913, the so-called hate crimes bill, was voted out of the House Judiciary Committee by a partisan vote of 15-12. A vote of the entire House is expected next week --- on Wednesday, April 29. Democrats refused to exclude pedophiles (people who stalk and sexually abuse children) in the ‘hate crimes’ bill. According to Louis P. Sheldon, Chaiman of Traditional Values Coalition, "this bill is the crown-jewel of pro-LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) agenda. The LGBT crowd has been trying to get this legislation passed and signed into law for more than a decade."
National Security: After a week of muddled announcements from the Obama administration about investigations over enhanced interrogation methods used on terrorist, it appears that the White House is now back to the position Obama’s chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, laid out on Sunday. According to The Washington Post, “President Obama rebuffed calls for a commission to investigate alleged abuses under the Bush administration in fighting terrorism, telling congressional leaders at a White House meeting yesterday that he wants to look forward instead of litigating the past.” On Sunday, Emanuel said that “[t]his is not a time for retribution.”
The Post writes, “On Tuesday, Obama explicitly raised the prospect of legal consequences for Bush administration officials who authorized the techniques applied to ‘high value" terrorism suspects, and said if Congress is intent on investigating the tactics, an independent commission might provide a less partisan forum than a congressional panel.” But now, as Politico reports, Obama “thinks it would be a mistake to set up a commission to investigate [alleged] excesses of the Bush administration’s war on terror.”
Why has the administration been all over the place on investigating interrogation methods? It could have something to do with the intense pressure the White House has been getting from the Left. The AP writes in an analysis piece today that Obama “is trying to appease his liberal base without losing control of a potentially volatile inquiry into George W. Bush administration's use of harsh interrogation tactics against terrorism suspects.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has “always been for a truth commission” and expressed her support for it at a meeting with the president yesterday, according to Politico. It’s not just Pelosi, though. The AP notes, “[L]iberal groups, blogs and Web sites are afire with calls for full-bore inquiries and possible prosecutions of the lawyers and officials who justified the tactics. . . . Liberal talk show host Ed Schultz said this week on MSNBC that many liberal Democrats ‘want to see prosecution. Does the president just ignore them?’”
Indeed, MoveOn.org released an ad calling for a special prosecutor to investigate former Bush administration official. And Byron York reported that liberal billionaire George Soros is also calling for such an investigation. George Soros who appears to believe that he bought the presidency for Obama and now Obama should do what ever he demands.
There may be other political considerations at work, too. Accordingto another story in The Washington Post today, “A source familiar with White House views said Obama's advisers are further convinced that letting the public know exactly what the past administration sanctioned will undermine what they see as former vice president Richard B. Cheney's effort to ‘box Obama in’ by claiming that the executive order heightened the risk of a terrorist attack.”
There has been no shortage of political games to play with intelligence gathering and the Bush administration’s war on terror policies. If the administration is deciding that it’s better after all to look forward and ignore the calls from the left for political revenge, it would be a positive development. Especially since the path would return us to a Clintonian era where we let down our human intelligence which according to the 9-11 Commission contributed to our vulnerability leading to the attack on 9-11. Tags:national security, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C.To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Tony Perkins, Washington Update: Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner surprised everyone yesterday when he announced that the banks receiving government bailout money would not be allowed to pay off the loans early. For firms like J.P. Morgan Chase and Goldman Sachs, the administration's "gotcha" moment came in the form of Tuesday's press conference, when Geithner said it was up to the government to decide when and how the banks repaid their TARP debts.
Anxious to get out from under Washington's thumb, some had asked to be released from their bailouts. Not so fast, said Geithner, who indicated that the banks were at the mercy of the "system as a whole" and its ability to rebound collectively. For the firms frustrated by the President's constant meddling, the news is a crushing blow. But for Uncle Sam, who delights in this new role as the federal loan shark, the ability to dictate everything from executive salaries to internal purchases is simply too much power to walk away from.
As Larry Kudlow points out on NRO, "If a bank has the money to pay the taxpayers back, they should be allowed to do so. Is ... Obama... simply trying to maintain control over the banks?" Or worse, nationalize them for good? This example of payday loan politics should serve as a warning to any companies seeking government handouts that Washington will hold their autonomy as collateral. After Geithner informed the banks of this small print, the markets took a predictable dive. See also:The Washington Post: Geithner Hints at High Bar In Letting Banks Repay Aid Tags:banks, FRC, nationalized banking, TARP, Timothy Geithner, Tony Perkins, Washington UpdateTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Sec. Napolitano Should Answer Before Congress and Resign
Hat Tip to The Freedom Crier who visited and left a comment on prior post Slander of Military by Home Land Security and had the following video posted with Rep. Michele Bachman taking to the floor to call to question the recent Homeland Security department memo referring to conservatives as "right-wing extremists" who pose a potential threat to the security of the nation. Rep. Bachmann urges that Sec. Janet Napolitano be called to answer questions before Congress and potentially tender her resignation.
Tags:conservatives, Department of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, Michele Bachmann, Right Wing, right-wing extremists, US CongressTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Senate is considering S. 386, legislation designed to crack down on financial fraud. Yesterday, the Senateapproved an amendment that would create a bipartisan commission to investigate the causes of the financial crisis. The Senate also approved, by unanimous consent, a resolution (S. Res. 108) commending the crew of the Maersk Alabama, Captain Richard Phillips, and the U.S. Navy for their exceptional efforts and devotion to duty.
House Judiciary Committee continues markup on legislation that will put your religious freedoms in danger of the HR 1913 "Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009." Yesterday, The Democrats admitted defeat on the phony “findings” that claimed homosexuals and drag queens were fleeing across state lines to avoid personal attacks. The Democrats voted to remove the “findings.” Sources at the mark-up meeting identified that Rep. Gerald Nadler (D-NY) admitted that this bill is designed to raise the penalties for crimes against these specially protected groups! This is unequal protection under the law. Democrats admitted that “animus” – or what a person thinks – is the basis for enhanced penalties against homosexuals, bisexuals, and transsexuals. They have admitted that this is a thought crime bill! People will be punished for what they think – just for their violent actions!
HR 45 - the Blair Holt Firearm Licensing & Record of Sale Act of 2009 was introduced into the House. Basically this bill would make it illegal to own a firearm - any rifle with a clip or ANY pistol unless: It is registered. You are fingerprinted, supply a current Driver’s License and Social Security number, and submit to a physical & mental evaluation at any time of their choosing. Each update - change or ownership through private or public sale must be reported and costs $25. Failure to do so you automatically lose the right to own a firearm and are subject up to a year in jail. Includes a child provision clause on page 16 section 305 stating a child-access provision. Gun must be locked and inaccessible to any child under 18. The Government would have the right to come and inspect that you are storing your gun safely away from accessibility to children and fine is punishable for up to 5 yrs. in prison.
Remember the Federal Budget for Year 2010. House and Senate Budget Committees (controlled by democrats) are convening a conference committee to reconcile the differences between their two versions of the budget. Expect their use of a process called “budget reconciliation,” that would stifle debate and ease passage of controversial and costly changes that the Obama Administration wants. These changes, which are aimed at “remaking” the American economy, include nationalized health care, a cap-and-trade energy program, and an overhaul of the college loan system. What’s more, the Obama budget would levy a whole host of new and higher taxes to fund these policies.
The budget would raise income taxes on individuals and small businesses by $636 billion over 10 years. President Obama’s budget would also impose a “light switch tax” on all Americans in order to implement a cap-and-trade energy policy, where companies would have to pay the federal government to use oil, natural gas, and other fossil fuels. That tax alone could cost American families as much as $3,100 per year in higher prices for electricity, gasoline, and other products and services.
This massive $3.6 trillion budget comes on top of the $787 billion “economic stimulus” package; $410 billion fiscal 2009 omnibus spending bill that was loaded with more than 8,000 earmarks; and the $700 billion bailout of Wall Street, Detroit automakers, and homeowners who took out mortgages they can’t afford. Note that the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has predicted that the Obama budget will push the federal deficit to a mind-numbing $1.85 trillion this year and pile up $9.3 trillion in deficits over the next decade, on top of the existing $11 trillion national debt! CBO called these deficits, which would never fall below 4% of our economy’s gross domestic product, “unsustainable.” The non-partisan Citizen's Against Government Waste is calling for individuals to contact their Senators and Representatives to demand that sanity is returned to the process and that these items be removed from the budget.
National Security: In the wake of the White House releasing previously classified memos providing legal reasoning for and describing enhanced interrogation techniques on terrorists, Democrats in Congress and the Obama administration are all over the map on whether there should be new investigations over these methods. There have also been mixed messages on whether the administration would be open to prosecutions of officials who wrote the legal advice in the memos.
In their daily briefing on Congress, The Huddle, Politico writes, “Democrats have been completely knocked off their game this week by the debate over torture and spying. So instead of driving the national conversation to climate change – a huge domestic priority for Dems – they’re fighting amongst themselves over who knew what on torture and what should be done about it now . . . .” The Washington Timesreports that top legislators knew of the interrogations including democtrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV (D-WV), and Rep. Jane Harman (D-CA). As they should have been
Politico points out, “The headlines show a completely mixed message from Democratic leaders.” That may be understating things a bit. The AP says, “Democrats hold back on second interrogations probe,” but Roll Call reports, “‘Truth Commission’ Gains Currency Among Democrats.” According to the San Francisco Chronicle, “Pelosi backs anti-terror truth commission,” but according to the Las Vegas Sun, “Reid declines forming panel to probe Bush interrogation tactics.” One AP story says, “Dems push for torture hearings, ignoring Obama,” yet another AP story says, “Obama open to torture memos probe, prosecution.” Meanwhile, Bloomberg writes, “Obama Says Prosecuting Lawyers for Memos Up to Holder,” but the Los Angeles Times reports, “Prosecuting ‘torture memo’ authors called ‘a real stretch.’”
Politico pointed out the only thing that was made clear yesterday, writing, “Obama muddles torture message.” The Washington Post has a very good article examining the shifting statements coming from the White House, divisions in Congress, and the effects on President Obama’s desire to move forward. It’s worth reading the whole thing.
So, where do we go from here? That appears to be up to the administration and the Democrat majority in Congress. They might do well to consider what Sen. McConnell said Tuesday: “The president made big deal, after coming to office, about looking forward and not looking backward. And I wish there were as much focus in this administration on policies that will keep us safe here in the United States.” Tags:CIA, federal budget, gun control, Hate Crime Bill, national security, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C.To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Heritage Foundation: On Tuesday, the Heritage Foundation learned that the State Department had flown a delegationof new media experts to Iraq to consult with government officials and entrepreneurs on digital technology. The delegation made sense for several reasons, including the vast amount of digital talent that had been assembled. However, why was Blue State Digital was in Iraq? This was a company that unlike AT&T, Twitter, Google, MeetUp and Wired, was relatively unknown and not an industry leader in really anything.
It was then discovered that Blue State Digital is the official digital arm of the Democratic National Committee, Obama for America, and countless other liberal organizations, trade unions and political candidates. So why did they merit the distinction of serving in this delegation over say, GoDaddy.com executives, or other non-partisan website developers? Hoping it wasn’t about securing government funded contracts and business for a political pal, we waited to hear the reason. Now, we have an answer.
Reporting on the ground in Iraq is Wired.com Senior Writer Steven Levy who says: "[the State Department] hopes that a few of the companies will follow up and work out some technology exchanges or collaborations with Iraqis, beginning a process that will play at least some part in bootstrapping the bottomed-out situation into something approaching a 21st Century economy."
So, this is indeed about government contracts and business prospecting at the expense of taxpayers for the President’s campaign buddies. Granted, the President had a nice campaign website, but it was nothing that a non-partisan web developer could not have also brought to flourishing Iraq. While we are happy the President has finally realized that Iraq is a burgeouning civil society, we wish he wasn’t resorting to cronyism so soon. Will ACORN be on the next flight to Baghdad to consult on community organizing? Tags:ACORN, Barack Obama, Blue State Digitial, Contracts, federal money, Iraq, new mediaTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
This issue will remain a "dark stain" on America until the Department of Homeland Security rescinds Janet Napolitano's List full of emotional verbiage that labels as dangerous a majority of American citizens and ceases to indoctrinate law enforcement with respect to that list and proposed actions against their fellow citizens. Tags:Gary Varvel, Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, military troops, political cartoon, Townhall, veteransTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families: Yesterday was Holocaust Remembrance Day. All over Israel, the country came to a standstill for two mournful minutes as air raid sirens marked the murder of six million Jews who died in the Nazi Holocaust. Here in Washington, visitors crowded into the Holocaust Memorial Museum while politicians here and in Europe released statements expressing their commitment to making sure such a horror never happens again.
But, in fact, a second holocaust looms on the horizon. In increasingly Islamic Europe, attacks on Jews by skin heads and “jihadist wanna-bes” continue to grow. And in Tehran, the Shiite fundamentalist and Hitler admirer Mahmoud Ahmadinejad continues to march toward the production of nuclear weapons while he tells cheering mobs to imagine a new world without Israel and America – a world he promises is coming soon.
At 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue our new president appears clueless. His foreign policy to date has been one long apology tour – first in Europe, then the Middle East and last week in Latin America. But the more he apologizes, the more the thugs of the world can’t believe their good fortune. Last year, Iran, Syria, North Korea and their assorted allies were dealing with a president who understood good and evil, history and America’s role in the world. This year, they are dealing with a president who thinks he needs to be really tough on browbeating Israel into making more concessions for peace.
While the occupants of the White House change, the White House usually changes its occupant’s views on foreign policy. There is a reality about the nature of the world that presidents find difficult to ignore. But so far President Obama still acts as if his major goal is to please the radical Left of American politics and appease the enemies of freedom. If he doesn’t wake up, great horror lies ahead for us, for Israel and for free men everywhere. Tags:Gary Bauer, holocaust, Israel, Jews, jihad, JihadistTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Tags:anti-war protestors, Barack Obama, citizens, Hugo Chavez, leftist, political cartoon, Politics, Right Wing, Susan Boyle, William WarrenTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
A four year old gives grown-ups an American history lesson. Watch him explain the Declaration of Independence, the Boston Tea Party and the rights of American citizens. Even he understands citizens should be in charge! Take some time out of your schedule to find out how ballot initiatives can work for you at Citizens In Charge.
Tags:Citizens In Charge, right to petition, videoTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
It is that Sen. Blanche Lincoln is feeling uncomfortable about the fuss raised by black lawyers over the all-white slate of nine names sent to President Obama for three vacancies on the federal bench in Arkansas. Does that mean she’ll work extra hard to find a black lawyer for the list of nominees that will go up for the just announced fourth judicial vacancy in Arkansas at Fort Smith? (Or, for real diversity, maybe an Oklahoman to go with the Texan she and Mark Pryor have suggested for the judgeship in South Arkansas.)
No, the rumor is that the makeup to black voters (Lincoln, like most Democrats, has depended on a strong black vote in past elections and has lavished money on notorious street money operators to get the job done) might come in U.S. attorney nominations. No word has been forthcoming on these so far. The most mentioned names for the jobs — Michael Barnes in Little Rock and Conner Eldridge for the Western District — are white males.
While I agree that Sen. Lincoln (as the state’s senior Senator) was wrong in allowing a list to be put forward that did not contain an African-American jurist (unlike Republican Rep. John Boozman during the last administration), what twigged me is the parenthetical notation of the “street money” efforts by Sen. Lincoln.
I am not naive enough to think that Democrats in Arkansas do not engage in the old politics epitomized by Boss Tweed and Tammany Hall, but one would have to ask: In the post-racial America of Barack Hussein Obama, does street money have a place in the electoral process? After all, he turned his nose to the practice during the Pennsylvania primary.
As a constituent of Mrs. Lincoln, I would like her to share with us her “buy-out-the-vote-efforts” of the past or call Mr. Brantley’s claim false. Personally, I do not expect the latter as - despite my opposition to many positions he possesses - Mr. Brantley doesn’t report things he knows to be false.
If Blanche Lincoln really wants to show Arkansans that she is not of the stale politics of old, she would do well to disclose her Boss Tweed tactics and choose to disavow any street money payments by her, or allies on her behalf, during her re-election campaign. Will she run on her merits, or will she “make it rain”?
Tags:Arkansas, Barack Obama, Blanche Lincoln, Democrat, John Boozman, Judges, judicial appointments, Mark Pryor, political favors, Republican, SenatorTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Confused with the ongoing mixed messages about protecting our CIA agents and advisers, so is the press! The AP writes today in an analysis piece, “No wasting time digging up the past? So much for that. President Barack Obama said Tuesday that his attorney general would determine whether anyone from the Bush administration broke the law by crafting a legal rationale for drastic, demeaning interrogations of terror suspects. Trouble is, the White House had been sending the opposite signal for days.” . . . White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel said over the weekend the administration did not support prosecutions for ‘those who devised policy.”
And in aninteresting piece looking at the shifting rhetoric from the administration on the idea of prosecuting former administration officials the AP notes that Obama said in a written statement last week, "This is a time for reflection, not retribution’ and ‘nothing will be gained by spending our time and energy laying blame for the past." In its analysis, the AP writes, “Then came Obama's comments Tuesday when a reporter asked him if he backed prosecution for those who devised the interrogation policy. . . . ‘With respect to those who formulated those legal decisions, I would say that that is going to be more of a decision for the attorney general, within the parameters of various laws, and I don't want to prejudge that,’ Obama said. . . . It immediately seemed like a huge, surprising opening. Which is exactly what some of the liberal and human rights groups that helped get Obama elected want.”
At a press conference yesterday, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters, “The president made a big deal, after coming to office, about looking forward and not looking backward. And I wish there were as much focus in this administration on policies that will keep us safe here in the United States. I think it's important to remember, from 9/11 until the end of the Bush administration, not another single attack on the U.S. homeland. We were obviously doing something right. It wasn't just good luck. And to the extent that the president wants to alter the fundamental policies that have kept us safe for the last eight years since 9/11, it's a matter of some concern.”
It’s troubling that the administration seems eager to investigate and is even considering prosecutions over policy differences. Is this really the best way to go about protecting the American people from a very real threat?
But then again, The Teleprompter did apologize to Europe for US arrogance (even though Americans sacrificed and saved them twice from the jaws of tyranny), did bow to the King of Saudi Arabia, and did jovially shake hands with a South American dictator. We can't read minds or tea leaves or know whats in the hearts of man, but when a man kicks a dog when the dog has done nothing, we can surmise that the man doesn't like dogs. So, when we look act the actions and the words of the current POTUS, where are the directional arrows pointing? You decide - you comment! Tags:Barack Obama, CIA, Hate Crime Bill, HSS, Kathleen Sebelius, POTUS, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C.To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
"Karl Rove follows me on Twitter. That's creepy," wrote McCain, 24, on the DailyBeast website. McCain wrote she joined Twitter a few months ago because it allowed her to share the "less serious" and "humorously uncensored moments" of her life. Twitter, the wildly popular microblogging platform, constrains messaging to 140 characters or less. "But there's also been a downside: I am now being followed by Karl Rove, and my local sheriff, and God knows how many other political pundits," McCain wrote. "We need to take Twitter back from the creepy people."
In reading the above, I thought Sual might be spoofing, but then I read McCain's post. Also, I just checked Megan's twitter; she has 25,954 followers but only follows 66 people so don't get too excited. McCain obviously knows she can can block any follower from reading her twits. With over 25,000 followers she is not really concerned about keeping her "less serious" and "humorously uncensored moment" secret because she could have made her twits "private." Her use flippant humor in calling certain individuals "creepy people" make for a follow-on question: what is your favorite beverage when twitting your "uncensored moments." Maybe she will twit about this.
Megan further adds:
But "to be honest, I find Rove's Tweets boring," McCain wrote. "Sometimes he takes questions; other times he talks about his appearances on cable news and other shows. But he doesn't say anything substantive." . . . While McCain acknowledged that Rove's Tweets seem to reveal a "softer side" to him, she believes he's being "disingenuous" about his real self.
Who's being "disingenuous?" Is Rove being on "cable news and other shows -real boring"? Not likely - but it was a good plug of Rove by Megan.
So what is happening with her post? Having raised children, I can make an experienced educated parental opinion. Megan had to (or wanted to) post an article and decided to try humor but may have missed the mark based on many of her readers' comments. However, Megan hit a home run in getting people to read her post or to (as you are now doing) read about her post in hopes you will "buy" her product. She uses popular "keywords: nouns / names" that drive the Internet and her potential followers wild. She mentions Twitter, her father - John McCain, her former teenage "dream bow" - Karl Rove, a favorite cop - Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, and a couple liberal websites. She concludes, "I can't shake the fact that Karl Rove is following me-it can be creepy. So watch out." Now that line was funny and good marketing. She has already labeled her content as "Megan's humorously uncensored moments." She now humorously invites you to "Get 'creepy' and follow me -- Megan McCain on Twitter." Tags:Joe Arpaio, John McCain, Karl Rove, Megan McCain, twitterTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Kerby Anderson, Point of View: Tomorrow, the House Judiciary Committee will consider legislation that will put your religious freedoms in danger. Wednesday, April 22 the committee is scheduled to mark-up the HR 1913 "Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009." At a hearing during the last Congress, Representative Artur Davis (D-AL) admitted that this legislation could be used to arrest pastors for hate crimes. Already in this country we have seen state hate crimes laws used to arrest people for sharing their faith and businesses forced to pay heavy fines for choosing not to provide services for same-sex “wedding” ceremonies.
Under this law, if someone commits a crime against a homosexual this person as well as others could be charged with a hate crime. The "crime" could be as simple as sharing how God can help him change his lifestyle. And if that person read my book on homosexuality prior to their crime, not only could he be charged with a hate crime, but I could too! Your pastor could be charged in the same way for a statement he made in a sermon. This would mean criminal prosecution in a Federal Court.
Rasmussen Reports: National telephone survey finds that 52% of the nation’s Likely Voters now worry that the government will do too much. That’s up from 50% a month ago and 43% in mid-February. It’s the highest level of concern measured since Barack Obama was elected president. . . . . The number who worry that the government will do too little has fallen sharply to 31%. That’s down nine points from 40% a month ago and 12 points from 43% two months ago. Tags:Barack Obama, big government, economy, Rasmussen Reports, SurveyTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Senate reconvened at 10 AM today and resumed post-cloture consideration of the nomination of Christopher Hill to be ambassador to Iraq. Following completion of debate on the Hill nomination, the Senate will vote on cloture on the motion to proceed to S. 386, legislation designed to crack down on financial fraud. Yesterday, the Senate voted to invoke cloture on the Christopher Hill nomination and confirmed three Department of Justice nominees.
Certainly, President Obama is to be commended for looking to eliminate wasteful government spending, but his request for his cabinet secretaries to find around $100 million in savings just doesn’t measure up when we consider the crisis we face in entitlement spending and the president’s own budget. Heck, he could probably eliminate that amount running his local staff and the White House.
To quote Sen. McConnell, “Cutting $100 million in waste is good. But let’s put it in context. We’ll spend about that much every single day just on the interest payments for the Stimulus bill that Congress passed earlier this year. $100 million in savings is good, but it only amounts to about 33 cents in savings for every single American. Compare that to entitlement spending, where, in order to meet all of our current and future entitlement promises, we would have to extract $495,000 from every American household. The way I see it, there’s simply no question as to where the priority should be.”
Glancing at yesterday and today's headlines few were impressed with the savings being sought: Reuters: “White House on defensive over spending cuts”; AP: SPIN METER: “Saving federal money the easy way”; Politico: “Obama’s savings questioned”; CNN: “What cutting $100 million really means”; ABC: “Obama Asks For $100 Million in Budget Cuts: Is it Just a Drop in the Bucket?”; CBS: “Is $100M Much Of A Budget Cut? Ask Obama”; Marketplace: “Will budget cuts make a difference?”; CongressDaily: “Republicans scoff at Obama’s call for spending cuts”; Roll Call: “Obama Orders Spending Cuts, Defends Effort”; Politico: “GOP-ers mock Obama’s budget cuts”.
Indeed, the president himself acknowledged that these cuts barely scratch the surface of mountainous federal spending. According to ABC News, “Isn’t $100 million just a drop in the bucket, one reporter asked. ‘It is and that’s what I just said,’ the president said. ‘None of these things alone are going to make the difference but cumulatively, they make an extraordinary difference because they start setting a tone. So what we're going to do is line by line, page by page, $100 million there, $100 million here, pretty soon, even in Washington, it adds up to real money.’”
The problem: it’s hard to see just where they’ve gone line-by-line looking for cuts in an unprecedented $3.6 trillion budget proposal.Tags:nomination, Christopher Hill, ambassador, Iraq, federal spending, US Congress, US Senate, Washington D.C.To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Hat tip to Political Calculator for the following: Janeane Garofalo calls Tea Party attendees "teabaggers" "racist rednecks" on Countdown with Keith Olbermann." (4/16) Can they really be this far out of touch with reality? I’m not surprised that the only show she can get on is Olbermann’s. She should launch her own liberal radio station. Oh wait, that already blew up in her face.
Apparently, we’re all just dumb, white racists, who hate the fact that we have a black President. She’s like a heroin addict who hasn’t reached step one in her recovery. She can’t admit she has a problem (with her limp biscuit?). I just love how she can’t admit that there was a significant turnout at the TEA parties. She says “literally tens of people”. She must be referencing the liberal counter-protests.
Let’s see if we can do the math. The liberals claim that public education is increasing in quality. Garofalo claims that Fox News can’t survive without an uninformed (unintelligent) electorate. Hmm…then why is Fox’ market share increasing and the MSM market share decreasing? And one more comment before I go. Why do you think it is that the liberals seem to know so much about teabagging? I guess it must be their superior intelligence and open mindedness.Tags:countdown, Janeane Garofal, Keith Olbermann, liberals, MSNBC, race card, racist, rednecks, tea party, teabag, videoTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Congress returned from an extended recess today. The Senate will reconvene at 2 pm and begin consideration of the motion to proceed to legislation designed to crack down on financial fraud, S. 386. At 5:30, the Senate is expected to vote on a trio of nominees to be assistant attorney generals. Following those votes, debate will begin on the nomination of Christopher Hill to be ambassador to Iraq, with a cloture vote on his nomination scheduled for this evening.
While it’s encouraging that the administration is discussing ways to cuts some of the excessive spending in Washington, the difference in magnitude between the cuts being sought and the proposed budget is revealing. The Washington Post reports today that President Obama will order his cabinet “to identify a combined $100 million in budget cuts over the next 90 days.” The Post notes, “Although the budget cuts would amount to a minuscule portion of federal spending, they are intended to signal the president's determination to cut spending and reform government, [a senior administration] official said.”
Sen. Mitch McConnell said, “I appreciate the efforts to save millions by identifying unnecessary or duplicative government spending. But let’s not forget that at the same time they’re looking for millions in savings, the President’s budget calls for adding trillions to the debt. The nation’s debt is at its highest level ever, but under the administration’s budget, the amount of public debt will double in five years and triple in 10.” Interestingly, the government will pay $100 million in interest per day over the next ten years on the stimulus bill.
Meanwhile, The New York Times reports that the administration is already having trouble coming up with ways to pay for its ambitious agenda, including health reform. Congress has shown little enthusiasm for some of the large tax increases the administration wanted. Even if all the tax increases called for in the budget were implemented, it would still leave Americans with a staggering amount of debt, more than all the debt accumulated from the administrations of George Washington to George W. Bush.
Cutting wasteful spending is an excellent idea, but looking to save millions while adding trillions to the debt (that’s a difference of 6 zeroes) without looking at entitlement reform is barely a drop in the proverbial bucket.Tags:financial fraud bill, debt, interest payment, National Debt, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C.To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
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