News for social, fiscal & national security conservatives who believe in God, family & the USA. Upholding the rights granted by God & guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, traditional family values, "republican" principles / ideals, transparent & limited government, free markets, liberty & individual freedom. All content approval rests with the ARRA News Service Editor. Opinions are those of the authors. While varied positions are reported, beliefs & principles remain fixed. No revenue is generated for this site - no paid ads accepted - no payments for articles. Fair Use doctrine is posted & used. Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru] - firstname.lastname@example.org (Pub. Since July, 2006)Home Page
One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics
is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato
Saturday, September 15, 2012
Satire: MSNBC - Are We Better Off Today Than 4 Years Ago
Enjoy! by HerBunk: MSNBC correspondents explain why Obama needs to be re-elected despite his record. The script was based on "The Vast Legions of the Better Off as Reported by MSNBC", an editorial written by Kevin Ferris assistant editor of the editorial page of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Tags:satire,comedy, MSNBC, liberal, biased, reportingTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
by Phyllis Schlafly, Eagle Forum: The bounce expected from Barack Obama’s Democratic Convention speech collapsed the following day under the reality check that the current unemployment figure is 8.1 percent. And 40.7 percent of those have been out of work for 27 weeks or more.
Those numbers tell only a small part of Obama’s failure to deliver on his promises. The real unemployment figure is closer to 19 percent because the official count doesn’t include (a) the 8 million unemployed who have given up and stopped looking for a job, or (b) the people who have had to settle for part-time work, or (c) those who had to take lower-paid jobs well below their qualifications, or (d) the 11 million who are out of the workforce collecting Social Security disability checks.
The plight of young Americans is even worse. For 18-to-29-year-olds, the unemployment rate is 12.7 percent.
The majority of jobs lost during our current depression were well-paying jobs, while the majority of jobs that Obama brags about increasing are lower-paying jobs.
The National Employment Law Project reports that occupations in construction, manufacturing and information, with median hourly wages of $13.84 to $21.13, accounted for 60 percent of job losses and only 22 percent of job growth. Meanwhile, 58 percent of the job growth Obama bragged about was lower-paying jobs with hourly wages of $7.69 to $13.83.
The jobs with the fastest growth were retail sales, where the median wage is $10.97 an hour, and food preparation jobs that pay $9.04 an hour. Some of these jobs are taken by entry-level workers, but many others are taken by older Americans laid off from well-paying jobs.
A Labor Day weekend report also came from the Department of Agriculture telling us that 46,670,373 Americans are now receiving food stamps at an annual cost to the taxpayers of $71.8 billion. Do we really believe that more than 46 million Americans would go hungry without a government handout?
One of Obama’s much talked-about solutions for the jobs problem is to send more kids to college. But most recent college graduates cannot get jobs that require a college degree or justify the enormous debt they incur in order to attend college.
The jobs aren’t there that justify either individual or taxpayer debt to increase college attendance. The Labor Department predicts that, of the top ten occupations expected to provide the most jobs between now and 2020, three will require no more than a high school education, and five others won’t even require a high school diploma.
Even those jobs would be welcomed by unemployed Americans, but many of those fastest growing jobs are taken by immigrants, legal and illegal. Obama’s refusal to enforce the laws against illegal aliens and his prosecution of states trying to do what his administration is failing to do, plus his illegal order to give work permits to 1.7 million young illegal aliens, add up to a direct attack on the job opportunities of millions of Americans.
Those who say we can just concentrate on fiscal issues and ignore social issues are refusing to face the reality that federal spending is driven by social issues, especially the low marriage rate and the high illegitimacy rate. The Census Bureau reports that the poverty rate of single-parent households is 27.3 percent, but the poverty rate of married couples is only 6.2 percent.
The current depression has not only changed the kind of jobs that people take but is changing the American character from self-reliance to dependence on government. During the Great Depression of the 1930s when there were no entitlements, Americans didn’t look to government for handouts and they grew up to become the Greatest Generation.
According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, entitlement payments in 1960 amounted to $24 billion (in current dollars), but by 2010 had climbed to $2.2 trillion in money, goods and services. In 1960, entitlement payments were well below a third of federal government expenditures, about the same proportion as in 1940. But now, entitlements amount to two-thirds of federal spending, with all other government functions reduced to one-third.
America is now a very different country from what it used to be. That enormous growth of entitlements over the last 50 years has transformed not only the purpose of government, but also the American character. Barack Obama has taken us across a landmark threshold.
Many Americans now feel no shame in milking the taxpayers and seem to agree with Obama that “government is the only thing we all belong to.” It doesn’t seem to bother them that their handouts are financed by borrowing from Communist China, leaving a colossal debt to hang around the necks of our children and grandchildren.
Obama’s expensive Stimulus plan failed, and now he offers no plan to create more jobs, or to build individual independence and self-reliance. We hope for a change in November. Tags:Phyllis Schlafly, Eagle Forum, Democrats, Create Jobs, no jobsTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
The below letter to the editor is by Robert "Bob" McDowell, Jr. He is a Professional Engineer and Geologist with over 50 years experience in creating drilling prospects, supervising drilling, well completion, production operation, and pipeline design for oil and gas including repair of problem wells. McDowell is a conservative and active in the Oklahoma Republican Assembly.
By Bob McDowell: As this is written there has been a number of violent 'demonstrations' in the Muslim world of North Africa which have, by design in my opinion, been orchestrated by the religious leaders of that 'faith/government' that appears to believe that their sworn duty is to 'convert, enslave, or kill' those in the rest of the world. These people seem to believe it is their prerogative to take to the streets in violence whenever and wherever it suits them and their agenda of World domination. They seem to take pride in having tortured and killed 'infidels' (non-believers) in the name of their god, Allah And we are told that their belief is that if they die in such actions, they will receive as a reward '72 virgins' in their after life.
Christianity is, and was considered to be during the ministry of Jesus of Nazareth, a new sect of the Jewish faith. One hundred percent of the first Christians were Jews, and it was not until later that "Gentiles", or non-Jewish believers, were converted into the Christian faith. It has been the stated practice of Christian missionaries to tell the story and those hearing to make up their own minds. No one should feel to be forced into the Christian faith.
Because of this, to us, an evil belief on the part of the followers of Islam, a war has been declared on the Western World, including the USA. This was brought home on September 11, 2001 by the hijacking of four airliners which were flown into the towers of the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington. Thanks to the brave and patriotic passengers of the fourth plane it was recaptured and crashed in Pennsylvania. The loss of life was greater than that at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 which began our entry into World War II.
It is my opinion that much of the blame for these recent attacks must lie with the present administration and President Obama who appears to feel that if he goes on with his campaign travels and appearances the problem will resolve itself. Obviously it will not. There seems to be a lack of understanding, or perhaps it is deliberate, that the evil people have no respect for those who show evidence of weakness or determination. We can have the largest and most powerful military defenses in the World, but a failure to, by action, indicate that we are quite willing to use it in our own defense and protection of our citizens and businesses around the World it is of no avail.
Since taking office in 2009, President Obama has signaled just such intentions. He has traveled the world bowing to government officials of the Muslim faith. His administration appointed officials and their staff members have continually acted to attack those of us in the Christian faith. They have required the removal of GOD, JESUS, and crosses from public, and sometimes private, property. Prayer to GOD and the mention of JESUS is forbidden in government schools. Cities and counties are zoning to not allow churches to build or expand and yet, as a further sign of weakness, even private schools, such as the University of Tulsa, have allowed mosques to be built on the school property.
Admittedly, some of this at the school level can be blamed on the infiltration of the church denominational staffs and heads by those of a different mind set. Several of the large denominations have allowed avowed and practicing homosexuals to be installed in the clergy, even as bishops.; They permit same-sex 'marriage', in violation of the specific orders contained in scripture as quoted by Jesus that "marriage is between one man and one woman." Actually, the word 'marriage' is a religious term, and others can attain the secular partnership protections.
We in the USA had better wake up and get our act in order, or we shall cease to be a free and prosperous world power. It seems that President Obama wants it that way! Tags:Bob McDowell, Oklahoma, letter to editor, official failure, President Obama, violent demonstrations, Muslim worldTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Update - EPA Email:Heritage Investigates reports, "The email was sent by EPA management analyst Susie Goldring. The agency distanced itself from the email Thursday night, saying it was “drafted and sent by an individual employee, and without official clearance. Shortly after sending the email in question the individual apologized to her colleagues [Not the public] . . . ” Heritage also noted that EPA’s email included "material that appears to be taken directly, and without attribution," from an independent website.
Cuban-American Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL-18), who chairs the House Foreign Affairs Committee, blasted the EPA:
"I am aghast and upset that a federal agency would send an email depicting el Che Guevara in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. This Administration just doesn’t seem to get it. The image of Che is an insult to countless people who lost family members because of his evil and twisted acts. El Che was a blood thirsty, vengeful, cowardly, sadistic, two bit delinquent who used his position as enforcer in chief of the Castro brothers to send countless innocent persons before the firing squads. His role in the early part of the disastrous calamity that befell the Cuban nation known as the Castro Revolution is well documented and those who ignore it do so willingly so as not to tarnish their love affair with the dictatorship of the Castro brothers. Surely, the EPA could have chosen the image of a Hispanic person who really possessed the attributes that showcase our proud Hispanic heritage. This sad and unnecessary episode encompasses all that is wrong with this Administration: Their priorities are backwards and their allegiances border on the fringe of society with a leftist fanatical slant that is worrisome and not descriptive of our great nation."
The Environmental Protection Agency
sent out this picture in an email
honoring Hispanic Heritage month.
Phil Kerpen, Contributing Author: On September 13, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sent an internal email to its staff under the subject line “Hispanic Heritage Month.” The email, obtained by The Weekly Standard magazine, featured a picture of infamous communist butcher Che Guevara with the slogan “hasta la victoria siempre,” or “on to victory, always.”
Che has long been a hero of communists and other radicals for his brutal tactics, and the iconic photo of Che taken Alberto Korda has shown up in inappropriate places before. But it is especially chilling to see Che’s image being used by a government agency that has pursued an astonishingly aggressive anti-growth and anti-property rights agenda.
The seeming ubiquity of Che’s image should not desensitize us to the depravity of the man. Alvaro Vargas Llosa explained the depths of Che’s evil a few years ago in the New Republic. He noted that Che wrote in “Message to the Tricontinental” in April 1967: “hatred as an element of struggle; unbending hatred for the enemy, which pushes a human being beyond his natural limitations, making him into an effective, violent, selective, and cold-blooded killing machine.”
In January 1957, Che murdered Eutimio Guerra, writing his diary: “I ended the problem with a .32 caliber pistol, in the right side of his brain…. His belongings were now mine.”
Most infamously, Fidel Castro put Che in charge of La Cabaña prison, where he summarily executed hundreds of men – over 500 according to U.S. State Department cables. According to Llosa, jazz musician Paquito D’Rivera wrote a letter criticizing the approving use of Che’s visage. D’Rivera wrote that one of Che’s prisoners “was my cousin Bebo, who was imprisoned there precisely for being a Christian. He recounts to me with infinite bitterness how he could hear from his cell in the early hours of dawn the executions, without trial or process of law, of the many who died shouting, ‘Long live Christ the King!’”
The EPA email said, apparently unaware of the irony: “Religion plays a significant role in the daily life of Hispanics with more than 90% of the population being Roman Catholic. Churches and spiritual activities influence family activities and families unite together to involve in prayers and sermons.”
So what could the EPA have meant by using a picture of the murderous Che with the slogan “on to victory, always”?
The EPA agenda is not literally murderous, but it is devastating to our economy. The agency’s regulations are crushing the coal industry and driving up the price of electricity. The agency’s corrupt shakedown of the auto industry will dramatically increase the price of all but the very smallest and lightest vehicles – putting them out of reach for the Americans who need them most.
The EPA’s infamous abuses of the Clean Water Act led to a recent unanimous Supreme Court case in Sackett, with even the Court’s liberals agreeing that the agency has no right to prohibit an Idaho couple from building a home on their property without even a right to appeal.
Former EPA administrator Al Armendariz resigned in disgraced after video surfaced of him explaining his philosophy of harassing oil and gas companies: “It’s kind of like how the Romans used to conquer little villages in the Mediterranean: they’d go into little Turkish towns somewhere, they’d find the first five guys they’d run into, and they’d crucify them and then, you know, that town was really easy to manage over the next few years.”
WOODWARD: “Lew, Nabors, Sperling and Bruce Reed, Biden’s chief of staff, had finally decided to propose using language from the 1985 Gramm-Rudman-Hollings deficit reduction law as the model for the trigger.” (Bob Woodward, “The Price Of Politics,” Pgs. 339-340, 2012)
WOODWARD: “At 2 p.m. Lew and Nabors went to the Senate to meet with Reid and his chief of staff, David Krone. ‘We have an idea for the trigger,’ Lew said. ‘What’s the idea?’ Reid asked skeptically. ‘Sequestration.’”(Bob Woodward, “The Price Of Politics,” Pgs. 326-7, 2012)
WH Plan: Cut Half From The Defense Department
WOODWARD: “Well, it could work, Lew and Nabors explained. What would the impact be? They would design it so that half the threatened cuts would be from the Defense Department. ‘I like that,’ Reid said. ‘That’s good.’” (Bob Woodward, “The Price Of Politics,” Pgs. 326-7, 2012)
“Top defense officials have warned that further cuts to defense could hurt national security. And defense contractors have been saying for months that the cuts could result in significant layoffs in their industry.” (“White House Details Fiscal Cliff Spending Cuts,” CNN Money, 9/14/12) Tags:sequestration, White House, Draconian Spending Cuts, Cut Half From The Defense DepartmentTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
ARRA News Editorial Comment: Historically, professionals were determines by a set of of criteria. The traditional professions were doctors, engineers, lawyers, architects and commissioned military officers. Later the Nurses, accountants, educators, scientists, technology experts, social workers, Artists and many more.
However the word professional has become watered down with everyone trying to cover themselves with the mantel of a the word "professional." Even hookers and sports players claim to be professionals while seeking their own personal glories and of course money. However, many teachers have surrendered the above professional criteria when they opted to join a Union. In their desire to seeking benefits for themselves, they joined the ranks of blue collar worker and gave up the criteria below of a professional. They are no longer professionals but laborers.
Below are criteria for a professional:
Expert and specialized knowledge in field which one is practicing professionally.
A high standard of professional ethics, behavior owing a higher duty to a client, often a privilege of confidentiality, as well as a duty not to abandon the client just because he or she may not be able to pay or remunerate the professional. Often the professional is required to put the interest of the client ahead of his own interests.
Appropriate treatment of relationships with colleagues. Being held accountable by ones own peers in the profession.
A code of conduct or oath ascribed to by all members of the profession
Teachers formerly were not pursuing their careers for money and benefits. They had a willingness to evaluate and to get rid of the those in their professions who failed to properly educate and serve their clients (students and the community) or who who preyed on their clients.
However, when they became members of a union, they soon ceased to be professionals and gave over their code of ethics to the lowest common denominator in their union thus becoming subjugated to their union's voice in pursuing money and benefits verses a higher calling to ethics, responsibility and professionalism. When unionized they opted to protect each other and not to professional educate their client (the student).
Fortunately, a large number of teachers have not surrendered to the call of statism advanced by government and unions. They have stood bravely in their profession. Thus, they have not participated in "The Strike" against their employer, their students and their community. Tags:The Strike, teachers, teachers unions, professionalism, William Warren, cartoonist, editorialTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act. ~ George Orwell
Today in Washington, D.C. - Sept. 14, 2012
The House reconvened at 9:00 AM and will be debating H.R. 6213 - "To limit further taxpayer exposure from the loan guarantee program established under title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005."
Yesterday the House passed (329-91) , H.J. R 117, a six month funding bill (continuing resolution) to keep government open from Oct 1, 2012 thru March, 31, 2013. This $1.047 trillion funding level for the first half of the year will be in effect when either Barack Obama or Mitt Romney is sworn in as president. ARRA News - more info on this C.R.
The House also passed: H. Res. 775 (Unanimous Consent) — "Condemning the shooting that killed six innocent people at the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, on August 5, 2012." H.R. 1775 (vote: 410-3) — "To amend title 18, United States Code, to establish a criminal offense relating to fraudulent claims about military service." H.R. 6365 (vote: 223-196) — "To amend the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985 to replace the sequester established by the Budget Control Act of 2011." S. 3245 (412-3) — "To permanently reauthorize the EB-5 Regional Center Program, the E-Verify Program, the Special Immigrant Nonminister Religious Worker Program, and the Conrad State 30 J-1 Visa Waiver Program."
The Senate is not is session today and will reconvene for a pro forma session only on Monday and return for legislative business on Wednesday.
On Wednesday, the Senate will vote on a motion to waive the Budget Act with respect to the Murray substitute amendment to S. 3457, the Veterans Jobs Corps bill. If the motion to waive is agreed to, the Senate will vote on cloture (to cut off debate) on the Murray substitute amendment and then adoption of that amendment if cloture is invoked.
Later Wednesday, the Senate will vote on cloture on the motion to proceed (i.e. whether to take up) H.J. Res. 117, the House-passed six-month continuing resolution (CR) to fund the government.
Bad economic news continues to roll in. AP reports today, “U.S. industrial production fell in August by the largest amount in more than three years as factories produced fewer cars and other manufactured goods and Hurricane Isaac triggered shutdowns along the Gulf Coast. Industrial production dropped 1.2 percent last month compared to July, the Federal Reserve said Friday. It was the biggest setback since a 1.7 percent decline in March 2009 when the country was in recession. Manufacturing output, the most important component of industrial production, fell 0.7 percent, led by a 4 percent drop in output at auto plants. . . . U.S. factory activity shrank for a third straight month in August, according to the Institute for Supply Management's closely watched survey of manufacturing conditions.”
This follows a report earlier this week that, as Pew put it, “The median income of American households decreased by as much in the two years after the official end of the Great Recession as it did during the recession itself . . . . The decrease in household income from 2009 to 2011 almost exactly equaled the decrease in income in the two years of the recession. . . . By this yardstick, the recovery from the Great Recession is bypassing the nation’s households.”
And in announcing new Federal Reserve policy yesterday, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke said, “Fewer than half of the 8 million jobs lost in the recession have been restored. And at 8.1 percent, the unemployment rate is nearly unchanged since the beginning of the year and is well above normal levels. The weak job market should concern every American. . . . Five million Americans have been unemployed for more than six months, and millions more have left the labor force, many of them doubtless because they've given up on finding suitable work.”
Speaking on the continued failure of President Obama’s economic policies from the Senate floor yesterday, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said, “For two years, this President got everything he wanted legislatively. Aided by giant majorities in both houses of Congress and goaded on by a chief of staff who told him to brush aside any pleas for bipartisanship, he spent two years putting into place the big-government agenda that he and his liberal allies had dreamed of — an agenda so extreme that their biggest challenge was making sure members of their own party didn’t defect.
“And the results of those efforts are clear for all to see: unemployment’s been above 8 percent for 43 months. Growth is an anemic 1.5 percent — the slowest recovery since the Great Depression. The federal debt is a stratospheric $16 trillion. A full 15 percent of Americans are now on food stamps. The census bureau said just yesterday that household incomes have declined every year of the Obama administration and one out of six Americans are living in poverty. And the labor participation rate — the percentage of those who can work that are actually working — is at its lowest point in decades. If you count people who’ve given up looking for work, unemployment’s above 11 percent, not the 8 percent we read about. These are the grim realities of the Obama economy. And make no mistake: the framework for it was laid in 2009 and 2010.”
I won’t pretend the path I’m offering is quick or easy. I never have. You didn’t elect me to tell you what you wanted to hear.
You elected me to tell you the truth.
And the truth is, it will take more than a few years for us to solve challenges that have built up over decades.
This claim displays the sad obliviousness of a well-intended, but apparently befuddled man making a very hollow promise. Getting the policy mixture right would lead to a return to economic vibrancy quickly, perhaps even immediately. This columnist has cited an example of this before. It is so startling, and heartening, it bears repeating.
German Chancellor Ludwig Erhard, the architect of the post-war German economic miracle, quoted this in the chapter entitled “Birth of the Market Economy” in his classic Prosperity Through Competition:
The big chance for Germany came in 1948: it depended on linking the currency reform with an equally resolute economic reform, so as to end once and for all the whole complex of State controls of the economy-from production to the final consumer-which, following in the wake of the people’s nonsensical demands, had lost all touch with reality. Today few can realize how much courage and sense of responsibility were needed for such a step. Some time later two Frenchmen, Jacques Rueff and Andre Piettre, summed up the combination of economic and currency reform thus:
‘The black market suddenly disappeared. Shop windows were full of goods; factory chimneys were smoking; and the streets swarmed with lorries. Everywhere the noise of new buildings going up replaced the deathly silence of the ruins. If the state of recovery was a surprise, its swiftness was even more so. In all sectors of economic life it began as the clocks struck on the day of currency reform. Only an eye-witness can give an account of the sudden effect which currency reform had on the size of stocks and the wealth of goods on display. Shops filled up with goods from one day to the next; the factories began to work. On the eve of currency reform the Germans were aimlessly wandering about their towns in search of a few additional items of food. A day later they thought of nothing but producing them. One day apathy was mirrored on their faces while on the next a whole nation looked hopefully into the future.’
The German Economic Miracle, in which “If the state of recovery was a surprise, its swiftness was even more so,” was no anomaly. It happened for FDR as well. It therefore comes as poignant that Obama, in his acceptance speech, pivots to FDR in a way that shows him oblivious to what FDR got right. Obama:
It’ll require common effort, shared responsibility, and the kind of bold, persistent experimentation that Franklin Roosevelt pursued during the only crisis worse than this one.
FDR got adjusting the valuation of the dollar, which had grown grotesquely distorted under the pseudo-gold standard then in place, right. The economy responded immediately. As this columnist has elsewhere observed:
As [French monetary statesman Jacques] Rueff observed in The Monetary Sins of the West (The Macmillan Company, New York, New York, 1972, p. 101):
Let us not forget either the tremendous disaster of the Great Depression, carrying in its wake countless sufferings and wide-spread ruin, a catastrophe that was brought under control only in 1934, when President Roosevelt, after a complex mix of remedies had proved unavailing, raised the price of gold from $20 to $35 an ounce.
As investment manager Liaquat Ahamed wrote in his Pulitzer Prize winning history Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World (The Penguin Press, New York, 2009, pp. 462-463) [stating what ensued]:
New orders for heavy machinery soared by 100 percent, auto sales doubled, and overall industrial production shot up 50 percent.
The disorders in our modern monetary system are dramatically different from those faced by FDR. The economy now appears to be suffering from a depreciating dollar. But the principle remains. Good monetary policy is requisite to kindling economic growth. This is the crucial insight.
Of course, the centrality of monetary policy — and its absence from the Republican presidential agenda, creates an opening for Obama to attack. Obama:
They want your vote, but they don’t want you to know their plan. And that’s because all they had to offer is the same prescription they’ve had for the last thirty years:
“Have a surplus? Try a tax cut.”
“Deficit too high? Try another.”
“Feel a cold coming on? Take two tax cuts, roll back some regulations, and call us in the morning.”
This aspect of the president’s critique faintly echoes that of Forbes Opinions and RealClearMarkets.com editor John Tamny. Tamny, correctly, has made the need for monetary reform — optimally, restoration of the classical gold standard — a recurring theme. In his “Tax cuts great, but not enough”, he observes:
Bush-era rates should be made permanent, but they alone can’t jolt the economy into high gear.
Here’s hoping Congress does, in fact, make the tax cuts permanent. If, so, however, investors and citizens more broadly would be wise to curb their enthusiasm. In no way would such a move signal that the U.S. economy is set to roar.
[A]bsent better dollar policy or, specifically, a commitment on the part of the Geithner Treasury in favor of a stronger dollar, neither the economy nor stocks will rebound in any long-term way. They won’t because a weak dollar works at cross purposes with tax cuts given that a weak dollar is anti-investment, and as such, anti-job creation.
Currency devaluation always and everywhere is anti-economic growth – and terrible for stocks – because savers and investors have no reason to do either, faced with eroding returns.
This is a theme to which Tamny returned last month:
… Romney could get taxes, trade and regulation right, but still fail if he continues the weak dollar policies of Bush and Obama. There are no jobs and no companies without investment, and there will be no major investment boom absent a stronger dollar.
Ironically enough, Romney’s indistinct program provides a platform for the “the kind of bold, persistent experimentation” extolled by Obama as FDR’s signature. And Obama has chosen to stand in the stand-pat shoes of Big Government Herbert Hoover. Obama demonstrates his trademark cynicism, and selective memory, when he says “all they had to offer is the same prescription they’ve had for the last thirty years.” Those thirty years were by no means homogenous. They contain two periods of respectable growth: Reagan and Clinton. Both presidential administrations shared the common denominator of lower marginal tax rates, good monetary policy… and the creation of millions of jobs a year, not, as Obama bleakly offers, a million jobs over four years.
Obama, belying his slogan of “Forward,” relentlessly pushes to return America to the Ford-Carter era of higher marginal tax rates and easy money. Romney credibly promises to get tax policy right and offers a possibility of monetary reform. Obama declaims: “The path we offer may be harder but it leads to a better place.” He’s half right. Obama’s path is harder. But it leads only to more of the same… and to ever greater hardship.
------------ Ralph Benko is senior advisor, economics, to American Principles in Action’s Gold Standard 2012 Initiative, and a contributor to he ARRA News Service. The article which first appeared in Forbes was submitted for reprint by the author. Tags:Ralph Benko, Barack Obama, the economy, forward, Ford-Carter era, marginal tax rates, hardshipTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
The U.S. House just passed, 329-91, H.J. R 117 a six month funding bill (continuing resolution) to keep government open from Oct 1, 2012 thru March, 31, 2013. This $1.047 trillion funding level for the first half of the year will be in effect when either Barack Obama or Mitt Romney is sworn in as president.
The bill includes $6.4 billion for the FEMA Disaster Relief Fund and $88.5 billion in “war-related funding” for ongoing overseas military operations. It also freezes federal employees pay during the six month period.
The bill does not address the deep automatic spending cuts and dramatic tax increases that will go into effect January 1, 2013. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) reports that a failure to address these situations could send our economy back into a major recession.
The bill now go to the U.S. Senate where it is expected to pass. Tags:U.S House, Continuing resolution, government fundingTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
· October 1, 2012: The 2013 Fiscal Year starts, and the federal government will shut down if Congress doesn’t pass appropriation bills or a continuing resolution. · January 1, 2013: The government goes over the “fiscal cliff” with automatic tax hikes and spending cuts set to take effect. · Sometime in early 2013: The debt ceiling will need to be raised.
R. Bruce Josten: There is no more urgent priority facing this Congress than preventing the U.S. economy from going over the fiscal cliff on January 1, 2013. Failure to act will slow growth and kill jobs—at the worst possible time.
That is why the U.S. Chamber sent a letter today, signed by 298 business organizations, calling on the president and members of Congress to immediately enact legislation that averts America’s fiscal cliff. They must prevent a devastating combination of historic tax hikes and ill-designed spending cuts from automatically taking effect at the end of this year.
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office and other leading economists warn that, if these tax increases and spending cuts take effect, they will plunge our economy back into recession in 2013 and could drive unemployment back up to above 9%.
The time to act is now.
The onset of harm to the economy will not wait until year-end. The very notion that the fiscal cliff exists has increased uncertainty, which has already begun to slow down consumer spending and hamper business investment.
In our letter, we urge Congress and the president to work together to immediately extend all of the 2001 and 2003 tax rates (including current marginal rates, dividend and capital gains rates, and estate tax relief) for all taxpayers; extend vital expired and expiring business tax provisions; provide alternative minimum tax (AMT) relief; and find spending cuts to replace a sequestration never intended to go into effect.
Short term action is not a substitute for long term fundamental fiscal reform. In addition to immediate action on the fiscal cliff, we also urge them to firmly commit to tackling comprehensive tax reform in the next Congress; and agree to develop a long term plan to address America’s excessive spending, particularly entitlement spending.
These are difficult times for many American families and businesses. The fact that America is entering the crucible of what may be one of the most heated elections in recent decades cannot – and should not – serve as excuses for inaction, at least on an interim basis to avert a crisis.
The threat of further harm to the American economy is real, and the American people and business community should not be forced to wait. We urge Congress and the President to act now.
------- Bruce Josten is executive vice president for Government Affairs at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. His article also appeared in The Hill. Tags:United States, fiscal cliff, act now, U.S. Chamber of CommerceTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Why does a dog wag its tail?
Because a dog is smarter than its tail.
If the tail were smarter, the tail would wag the dog.
Today in Washington, D.C. - Sept 13, 2012: Turmoil continues in other Muslim countries against America. Yesterday, hundreds of protestors attacked the American Embassy in Yemen. And, 500 government backed protesters in Iran were in the streets shouting "Death to America." All, just two days after America remembered its dead after the 9-11 attacks by Muslims fanatics on America. Also, protests continued outside the American Embassy in Egypt, and at the American missions in Morocco, Sudan and Tunisia.
While liberal press seems intent on supporting the effort to support placing the blame on an obscure video verse the real factors. They are evidencing their intent to shield President Obama and his administration. An administration which has bowed physically and metaphorically too often to other countries while the president has verbally stated his support of the Muslim world.
We also have the U.S. Sec. of State Hillary Clinton, who is despised by most Sharia practicing Muslims, barely voicing her complaint against violent anti-American protests while denouncing a video as "disgusting and reprehensible." Well Hillary, so is the so-called depraved artistry against Christians; so is the so-called Muslim "honor killing" of women, so is the global murder of hundreds millions of babies in the womb. But a be haggard Sec. Clinton has remained silent on these issues. The video is not the issue. Sec. Clinton is not even respected by the Muslim world. They hate female leaders like Clinton and if she lived in these countries she would be in a burka. Muslims also hate the U.S. State Dept being filled with gays and Clinton's open recognition of their relationships and sending them to foreign countries. Not all countries are willing to accept the U.S. "live and let live" philosophy.
However, these issues, like the video, are not the primary reason for the Muslim protests against the U.S.A. So, what is the reason behind these a deliberate attacks and protests orchestrated behind the scene radical who hate America?
Let's set aside the extremists hatred for any non-Sharia controlled country. Let's look at other factors. First, consider the weak economies in those countries where people have lots of time on their hands because of lack of jobs. It is evident that the billions of dollars the U.S. has poured into these countries over the years has gained us not friendship. Second, it is a fact that people living in third world countries resent and envy Americans. Third, Muslim clerics present to their followers that the U.S.A. as "the Great Satan. Finally, because of actions and statements by President Obama and by those within the Obama administration, the U.S.A. is now considered by others as extremely weak and vulnerable. And the enemies of America are embolden. As said yesterday, "The jackals are out in numbers."
With all this said, wonder if a "Wag The Dog" option is on the table to aid President Obama in his re-election?
The Senate and House both reconvened at 10 AM today.
The Senate resumed consideration of S. 3457, the Veterans Jobs Corps bill. Last night, they voted 84-8 to agree to the motion to proceed to S. 3457. Following the vote, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) immediately filled the amendment tree and filed cloture (to cut off debate) on the Murray substitute amendment and on the underlying bill. A vote is scheduled for Friday morning unless a unanimous consent agreement is reached on the bill.
House at noon will consider H. Res. 779 which provides for consideration of the bill H.R. 6213 to limit further taxpayer exposure from the loan guarantee program established under title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, and providing for consideration of motions to suspend the rules."
Yesterday, the House addressed and debated four bills with were also voted on and passed: H.R. 3857 (355-62) - "To amend the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 to require the Secretary of Homeland Security to include as an eligible use the sustainment of specialized operational teams used by local law enforcement under the Transit Security Grant Program, and for other purposes." H.R. 5544 (225-189) - "To authorize and expedite a land exchange involving National Forest System land in the Laurentian District of the Superior National Forest and certain other National Forest System land in the State of Minnesota that has limited recreational and conservation resources and lands owned by the State of Minnesota in trust for the public school system that are largely scattered in checkerboard fashion within the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and have important recreational, scenic, and conservation resources, and for other purposes." H.R. 5865 (339-77) "To promote the growth and competitiveness of American manufacturing." H.R. 5949 (301-118) "To extend the FISA Amendments Act of 2008 for five years."
Negative Reports On The Stalled Economy and lack of a robust recovery from the most recent recession just Continue To Pile Up.
Yesterday, Pew Social and Demographic Trends wrote, “The median income of American households decreased by as much in the two years after the official end of the Great Recession as it did during the recession itself. The latest estimates from the Census Bureau show that the median income for U.S. households in 2011 was $50,054.1 In 2009, the year the Great Recession ended,2 the median income of U.S. households had been $52,195 (in 2011 dollars). Thus, in the two years since the end of the recession, median household income has fallen by 4.1%. The decrease in household income from 2009 to 2011 almost exactly equaled the decrease in income in the two years of the recession. During the Great Recession, the median U.S. household income (in 2011 dollars) dropped from $54,489 in 2007 to $52,195 in 2009, a loss of 4.2%. By this yardstick, the recovery from the Great Recession is bypassing the nation’s households. The current ‘recovery’ is also the most negative for household income during any post-recession period in the past four decades.”
Further, Pew noted, “The lackluster results on household income are symptomatic of broader struggles in the economic well-being of U.S. households. As noted in the latest Census Bureau report, the poverty rate has also risen in the two years since the end of the Great Recession, from 14.3% in 2009 to 15.0% in 2011. The rate in 2007 was 12.5%. . . . Another financial burden on households is the nosedive in their wealth (value of assets owned minus outstanding value of debt) due to the recession. The latest available estimates from the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System show that median household wealth fell from $131,016 in 2007 to $79,431 in 2010, a loss of 39%. The malaise in income, poverty and wealth in part reflects the weak performance of the U.S. labor market.”
Today writes, “Overall, median household income fell 1.5% to $50,054 last year, the fourth consecutive annual decline after adjusting for inflation, the bureau said. The typical household has lost ground in seven of the past 10 years and now takes in less cash than it did in 1996 when adjusting for inflation. . . . Big losers: people in their prime earning years. All age groups between 25 and 64 suffered income drops in 2011. Households headed by 45- to-54-year-olds — when earnings typically peak — have seen a 13.4% decline in median earnings over a decade, a drop of nearly $10,000 a year.”
The New York Times summarizes the situation today: “[A]n overwhelming majority of Americans saw no gains from a weak economic recovery in its second full year.” And Pew concluded, “Overall, on the basis of some indicators, such as income and poverty, the economic health of American families deteriorated further in the first two years of the recovery from the Great Recession. Other indicators, such as unemployment, showed minimal improvement, if any. Much like an unwelcome dinner guest who does not know when it is time to leave, the Great Recession seems blissfully unaware that it was declared over in June 2009.”
As Sen. John Barrasso said in the Weekly Republican Address last week, “The reality is that America is not better off than it was four years ago. Today, 23 million Americans are unemployed or underemployed. Many are our friends, neighbors, and family members. The undeniable truth is, President Obama is on track to have the worst jobs record of any President since World War II. . . . The President's policies have failed to produce the results, accountability, and solutions the American people deserve. The Obama Administration is simply not moving our country forward. . . . President Obama says he deserves a grade of ‘incomplete’ on his handling of the economy. But people only ask for an incomplete when they know they’re failing. He’s now asking you to give him more time. The question is—can we afford to give him that time.
Voter ID and protecting elections from election fraud, stealing votes, rigging elections, and in truth stopping non-American citizens and felons from voting should be relevant to all legal voters. After reading Arkansas Lt. Gov. Darr's article, let us know in the comment section below what your Governor or Lt. Governor is saying or doing about voter id in your state by Arkansas Lt. Gov. Mark Darr: In less than two months, Americans will elect a new president. In many countries, citizens do not have the freedom to elect their leaders. This right, guaranteed in our Constitution, has set the United States apart as an example to the world. It is a right for which people have died. It is a right we must protect.
There are those who have sought to take this right away from others to further their own desire for power. Election fraud, stealing votes, rigging elections or whatever you want to call it, it shows a lack of respect for one’s fellow man and for one’s country when it is done.
It is because of this that I believe the time has come for us to pass a voter identification law in Arkansas. Our republic and our government are built upon a system of checks and balances. It is imperative that we protect the integrity of this system. Opponents of voter identification laws have said we don’t need a law because there is no voter fraud in Arkansas. Recent news events have shown that this isn’t the case. Right now, poll workers can ask you to show an ID, but it is not required that you show one. This is just going through the motions. It’s time we got serious about the integrity of our election process.
Opponents of voter identification laws say that supporters are trying to prevent certain people from voting. “Voter suppression” is a buzzword they use as a scare tactic to convince others this is true. Nothing could be further from the truth. This issue is not about “voter suppression”.
Critics of voter ID laws claim that they are discriminatory against minorities. They accuse supporters of the law of being racists and seeking to suppress minority votes. I take great offense at that accusation. Isn’t it racist to suggest that all minority voters are the same and that they aren’t capable of following the law? Isn’t it racist to say that no minority voter could possibly get an ID card on their own and that we have to make special rules because they can’t figure out how to do it? What a condescending point of view that is.
Detractors of voter identification laws also claim that they place a financial burden on citizens who cannot afford a government ID. Yet, when legislation was proposed to provide free voter identification cards, they still opposed it.
In 2011, Arkansas State Representative Bryan King sponsored House Bill 1797, which would have tightened election security and offered voter identification cards at no charge. It narrowly passed the State House with 53 votes out of 100, but it failed to get voted out of committee in the State Senate and did not become law. Rep. King has said he will reintroduce voter ID legislation during the next session and has proposed putting it into the Arkansas Constitution. I support this. Let’s take a stand as a state and say we won’t tolerate threats to fair elections by corrupt politicians and their operatives.
I remember watching the news a few years ago about the first elections held in Iraq after Saddam Hussein was removed from power. Turnout was huge. People showed up in droves and the lines were incredibly long. Elections had not mattered under their former dictator. Now, they were determining their country’s future. I remember the pictures of free Iraqis proudly holding up ink-stained fingers to show that they had voted. There, they used indelible ink to stain each voter’s finger to make sure they only voted once. If they are concerned with preventing voter fraud in Iraq, shouldn’t we be concerned with preventing it here? Tags:Voter ID, election security, election fraud, stealing votes, rigging elections, registered voters, fair elections, protect the vote, Mark Darr, Lt. Gov, ArkansasTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Representative Ron Paul (R-TX-Dist. 14): Last week marked the conclusion of the grand taxpayer funded spectacles known as the national party conventions. It is perhaps very telling that while $18 million in tax dollars was granted to each party for these lavish ordeals, an additional $50 million each was needed for security in anticipation of the inevitable protests at each event. This amounts to a total of $136 million in taxpayer funds for strictly partisan activities - a drop in the bucket relative to our disastrous fiscal situation, but disgraceful nonetheless. Parties should fund their own parties, not the taxpayer.
At these conventions, leaders determined, or pretended to determine, who they wished to govern the nation for the next four years amidst inevitable, endless exaltations of democracy. Yet we are not a democracy. In fact, the founding fathers found the concept of democracy very dangerous.
Democracy is majority rule at the expense of the minority. Our system has certain democratic elements, but the founders never mentioned democracy in the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, or the Declaration of Independence. In fact, our most important protections are decidedly undemocratic. For example, the First Amendment protects free speech. It doesn't - or shouldn't - matter if that speech is abhorrent to 51% or even 99% of the people. Speech is not subject to majority approval. Under our republican form of government, the individual, the smallest of minorities, is protected from the mob.
Sadly, the constitution and its protections are respected less and less as we have quietly allowed our constitutional republic to devolve into a militarist, corporatist social democracy. Laws are broken, quietly changed and ignored when inconvenient to those in power, while others in positions to check and balance do nothing. The protections the founders put in place are more and more just an illusion.
This is why increasing importance is placed on the beliefs and views of the president. The very narrow limitations on government power are clearly laid out in Article 1 Section 8 of the Constitution. Nowhere is there any reference to being able to force Americans to buy health insurance or face a tax/penalty, for example. Yet this power has been claimed by the executive and astonishingly affirmed by Congress and the Supreme Court. Because we are a constitutional republic, the mere popularity of a policy should not matter. If it is in clear violation of the limits of government and the people still want it, a Constitutional amendment is the only appropriate way to proceed.
However, rather than going through this arduous process, the Constitution was in effect, ignored and the insurance mandate was allowed anyway.
This demonstrates how there is now a great deal of unhindered flexibility in the Oval Office to impose personal views and preferences on the country, so long as 51% of the people can be convinced to vote a certain way. The other 49% on the other hand have much to be angry about and protest under this system.
We should not tolerate the fact that we have become a nation ruled by men, their whims and the mood of the day, and not laws. It cannot be emphasized enough that we are a republic, not a democracy and, as such, we should insist that the framework of the Constitution be respected and boundaries set by law are not crossed by our leaders. These legal limitations on government assure that other men do not impose their will over the individual, rather, the individual is able to govern himself. When government is restrained, liberty thrives. Tags:Republic, Not a Democracy, Unites States, Ron Paul To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Tags:Two Losers, Iran, 1979, Jimmy Carter, Cairo, Egypt, Libya, 2012, Barack Obama, history repeats itself, The Looking SpoonTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Gary Bauer, Contributing Author: The news from the Middle East seems like déjà vu. American embassies under attack; U.S. flags ripped down; mobs chanting "Death to America!" Sadly, it's not a bad mind trick, but the bad reality of Barack Obama's failed foreign policy.
Once again, Obama's constant kowtowing to radical Islam has borne poisonous fruit. A dedicated civil servant, Ambassador Christopher Stevens, was brutally murdered last night along with Sean Smith, a foreign service officer, and two U.S. Marines. Photos suggest Stevens was dragged half-naked through the streets.
According to CBS News, Libyan security forces moved Ambassador Stevens and his colleagues from the consulate to a supposedly more secure building. But then members of the Libyan security team reportedly directed the mob to the second building. Obama praised those security forces this morning, although there is no evidence they did their jobs.
In addition to the attack on Ambassador Stevens, the American embassy in Cairo, Egypt, was temporarily overrun yesterday. Radical Islamists scaled the walls, tore down the U.S. flag and raised a black flag that read, "There is no God but Allah, and Mohammad is his messenger." These attacks in Egypt and Libya were quickly blamed on a web video (which virtually no one has seen or heard of) that is critical of Mohammad.
Prior to the attack on the Embassy in Cairo, the staff released the following statement:"The Embassy of the United States in Cairo condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims -- as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions. … Respect for religious beliefs is a cornerstone of American democracy. We firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others."If only the Obama Administration were as concerned about the feelings of American Catholics and evangelicals, whose feelings -- and rights -- it is trampling with Obamacare and its efforts to redefine marriage.
Yet on the anniversary of 9/11, Obama embassy officials release this abject apology to Muslims condemning their fellow Americans for exercising their free speech rights. Last night, Governor Mitt Romney's campaign blasted that pathetic statement, saying, "It's disgraceful that the Obama Administration's first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks."
The Obama campaign said it was "shocked" by Romney's "political attack." Yet the White House also condemned the embassy statement, saying, "The statement by Embassy Cairo was not cleared by Washington and does not reflect the views of the United States government."
What made the embassy think such a statement was a good idea in the first place? No matter how hard the White House tries to deny it, there is no doubt that the bureaucrats in Cairo were simply reflecting the left-wing, politically correct mindset of the administration they serve!
But let's not lose sight of the bigger issue here. There is no movie, speech, photograph, painting, picture, essay, etc., that causes these murderous outbursts. Those are merely the excuses for such violence.
What causes these attacks is a radical Islamic infrastructure that keeps thousands of people on the edge of murderous rampages. They are pushed over the edge whenever one of these convenient excuses emerges. Radical Islam is violent! That Obama and Clinton don't understand this is why more dead Americans will come home in body bags in the days ahead.
Government sources now suggest these attacks were likely coordinated, may have involved the use of heavy weapons and were planned for the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. Yet the Obama Administration played right into the charade of "Muslim outrage" over our alleged insensitivity. Don't fall for the claptrap that a filmmaker is responsible.
It is also a reflection of Obama's weak approach to foreign policy. His outreach to the Muslim world, his grand speech in Cairo, his letter to the ayatollah, his embrace of the Arab Spring -- all of it was naïve. Clearly it has not won us any friends or brought stability to the region.
This morning, Governor Romney faced reporters and stood by his indictment of Obama's weakness, saying, "I think it's a terrible course for America to stand in apology for our values. When our grounds are being attacked and being breached … the first response of the United States must be outrage at the breach of the sovereignty of our nation. An apology for America's values is never the right course."
Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said today, "The lack of leadership is about to lead to an explosion in the Middle East, and I hope people will start to focus on foreign policy, because it really does matter."
On every front -- economic, national security and social issues -- Obama's instincts are not those of the average America.
------------- Gary Bauer is is a conservative family values advocate and serves as president of American Values and chairman of the Campaign for Working Families. Tags:Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families, Middle East, flames, Radical Islamists, LibyaTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Ambassador Murdered - Obama Response - Dems Do Nothing On Fiscal Cliff
Libyans drag the dead body of U.S. Ambassador
Christopher Stevens from the embassy
after he was murdered. Photo viaAl- Ahram
Today in Washington, D.C. - Sept. 12, 2012:
U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans including two Marines were killed (murdered) when Libyan militants attacked the U.S. consulate in Benghazi. President Obama ineptly responded this morning saying, "I strongly condemn the outrageous attack on our diplomatic facility in Benghazi, which took the lives of four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens. Right now, the American people have the families of those we lost in our thoughts and prayers. . . . I have directed my Administration to provide all necessary resources to support the security of our personnel in Libya, and to increase security at our diplomatic posts around the globe. While the United States rejects efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others, we must all unequivocally oppose the kind of senseless violence that took the lives of these public servants."
The U.S. has been attacked again by Libyans. Jefferson handled the first problem correctly with the Barbary pirates. With the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 by Libyan terrorists on Dec 21, 1988, which murdered 270 victims (259 on the plane and 11 in Lockerbie), several presidents failed to severely punish Lybia for the terrorists and their leaders actions. GW Bush did scared the hell out their leader when the U.S. attacked Iraq. Libyan leader Gaddafi gave up their Nukes. Now, Barack Obama does nothing in response to Libya invading our U.S. Embassy and the subsequent murder of an U.S. Ambassador Stevens and so far three other Americans. Instead Obama makes an obtuse remark about rejecting efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others which has no merit except in the radical minds of Muslims. He then calls what happened in Libya senseless violence. No Mr. President, the actions were not senseless, they were deliberate and they killed the spokesperson for the United States Government in Libya. America has surrendered its "peace through strength" policy. The jackals are out in numbers.
This morning, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell delivered the following statement on the attacks against our diplomatic posts abroad: “We learned yesterday, and are receiving reports this morning, of the attacks against the United States Embassy in Cairo and the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. In Benghazi our Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed in service to our nation. Our thoughts and sympathy today are with the families of these brave Americans. These attacks remind us of the sacrifices made on a daily basis by foreign service officers, diplomatic security personnel, and our Marine Security Guards.
I join my colleagues in strongly condemning the murder of these innocent Americans. And I support employing every available tool at our disposal to ensure the safety of Americans overseas and to hunt down those responsible for these attacks. Yesterday we commemorated the anniversary of the attacks of September 11, and today we are reminded that brave Americans serve us every day at the risk of their own lives. We honor the Americans we lost in Libya, and we will stand united in our response. Among the things we can all agree on in Washington is that attacks on the U.S. and its representatives will be met with resolve, and that America’s presence and defense of our national interests across the globe will not be deterred by the acts of violent extremists.”
The Senate reconvened at 9:30 AM today and resumed post-cloture consideration of S. 3457, the Veterans Jobs Corps bill. Yesterday, the Senate voted 95-1 to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to S. 3457.
The House reconvened at 10:00 AM today and at noon began consideration of resumed consideration of H.R. 5544 Minnesota Education Investment and Employment Act which was expected to be taken up tomorrow.
Yesterday, the House worked hard to move quickly on their planned activity in anticipation of their upcoming recess which most of them need so they can campaign for office. Many of the bills passed in this month will never become law as the Senate will not take up these bills, but they do make for good campaign rhetoric back in the congressional districts. Unless any of these bills are allowed by the Democrat controlled Senate in the lame duck session and are passed or incorporated into continuing resolutions, these bills will die and have to be reintroduced by their sponsors in the next session of Congress.
Passed by Voice Vote:
H Res 484 — Resolution on basic human rights in Vietnam
HR 1410 — Vietnam Human Rights Act of 2011
HR 1464 — North Korean Refugee Adoption Act of 2011 - To develop a strategy for assisting stateless children from North Korea
H.R. 4057 — Improving Transparency of Education Opportunities for Veterans Act of 2012
HR 4305 — Child and Elderly Missing Alert Program
HR 4631 — Government Spending Accountability Act of 2012
HR 538 — Federal Customer Service Enhancement Act
HR 6028 — No-Hassle Flying Act of 2012HR 6080 — Improvements in the enactment of title 41, United States Code
HR 6131 — Extending cybersecurity and fraud act
HR 6185 — Local Courthouse Safety Act of 2012
HR 6189 — Reporting Efficiency Improvement Act
HR 6215 — A bill to amend the Trademark Act of 1946 to correct an error in the provisions relating to remedies for dilution.
S 710 — Hazardous Waste Electronic Manifest Establishment Act
S. Con. Res. 17 — Expressing the sense of Congress that Taiwan should be accorded observer status in the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).
The House passed by vote: HR 4264 (402-7) FHA Emergency Fiscal Solvency Act of 2012
Action / vote postponed:
HR 1775 — Stolen Valor Act of 2011
HR 3857 — Public Transit Security and Local Law Enforcement Support Act
HR 5865 — American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act of 2012
S 3245 — 3 year extension of the authorization of the EB-5 Regional Center Program, the Special Immigrant Nonminister Religious Worker Program, the E-Verify Program, and the Conrad State 30 J-1 Visa Waiver Program
The New York Times reports today that Moody’s “warned that it would downgrade the government’s debt if no solution [to the fiscal cliff] was found by year’s end. . . . The Moody’s warning comes a year after its rival, Standard & Poor’s, downgraded the United States’ credit worthiness after the protracted stalemate over raising the nation’s statutory borrowing limit. . . . The agency said Washington must come to agreement to head off billions of dollars in simultaneous tax increases and spending cuts scheduled to begin in January — and to put the government on a sustainable fiscal trajectory. Only then would the United States keep its AAA rating.”
Yet Senate Democrats seem content to do nothing before November to address the massive tax hikes and painful defense cuts scheduled in January. National Journal writes, “The Senate will head home after taking up the continuing resolution next Thursday. Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid said Tuesday that once the Senate votes on the resolution to keep the government funded, they're unlikely to accomplish anything else this session. He said he plans to ‘run out the clock’ on a veterans jobs bill that is up for consideration this week.”
So with the fiscal cliff and another potential credit rating downgrade facing the United States, Democrats remain determined to do nothing. As Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell wrote in Politico on Monday, “Following the president’s lead, Democrats in Congress refuse to develop the kind of responsible, concrete plan to avert the impending ‘fiscal cliff’ that House Republicans voted on weeks ago. . . . Trying to avoid all responsibility for the problems we face, or the pressing challenges ahead, Democrats have simply sat on their hands, preferring to tell tall tales about what’s happening in Washington rather than doing anything about it. They appear ready to ride out the rest of the year doing virtually nothing about the problems we face as a nation — astronomical debt, a looming tax hike, crippling defense cuts and an anemic recovery that all these things promise to make even worse.” Tags:Washington, D.C., Libyans, Ambassador Christopher Stevens, murdered, President Obama, democrats, fiscal cliff, To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
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