ARRA News Service
News Blog 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 "smaller" government, free markets, lower taxes, due process of law, liberty & individual freedom. 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 or by this "Blog" - no paid ads - no payments for articles. Fair Use Doctrine is posted & used.
Blogger/Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru & 2010 AFP National Blogger of the Year]
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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Gov. Sarah Palin: 'I'm not a quitter'

CNN INTERVIEW 7/6/09 Video:
Gov. Palin is a fighter (barracuda), not a quitter!

Tags: Alaska, Barracuda, CNN, interview, Sarah Palin To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Hate Speech Bill Limiting Freedom of Speech?

Senate is trying to abridge 1st Amendment - Free Speech.
Also abridging double jeopardy! Listen closely!

Tags: 1st Amendment, banning free speech, double jeopardy, US Senate To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Friday, July 10, 2009

John Rep. Boozman: Stop Talk of Second Stimulus

by U.S. Rep. John Boozman (R-AR): Like many of you, I am concerned with the manner in which Washington is spending the hard earned tax dollars of American workers and families. I have fought against President Obama and Nancy Pelosi's spending spree, voting against the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

It is very disconcerting to see and read media reports White House officials are open to the possibility of a second economic stimulus. A second stimulus implies there was a first, but the reality is the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was no more than a spending bill. To many of us, the lack of job creation and the pace with which the money is being spent is not a surprise. Job creation needed to be the focus, not spending. Private business, not big government will put Americans back to work.

The Obama Administration, Speaker Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid promised that their trillion-dollar 'stimulus' would create jobs "immediately" and unemployment would not rise above eight percent. Unfortunately, that hasn't been true. In June alone, almost half a million jobs were lost, driving unemployment to 9.5 percent, its highest level in almost three decades.

Middle-class families, small businesses and Washington are all wondering the same thing - where are the jobs that we were promised this legislation would create? In almost five months since the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was approved, spending is slow and job creation is minimal. A report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) shows the 'stimulus' isn't working as quickly as Democratic leaders assured us. This validates many concerns I had and many of the same concerns you shared with me prior to passage of this legislation; government spending is not the answer to jumpstart our economy.

Less than a month after President Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Speaker Pelosi was already talking about a possible need for a second stimulus and Appropriations Chairman Dave Obey (D-WI) told his staff to begin drafting a second stimulus proposal. Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) recently said on Fox News Sunday that he doesn't "think anybody can honestly say that we're satisfied with the results so far of the stimulus" and left open the possibility of a second stimulus. It is hard to believe that after rushing a $1 trillion stimulus bill through Congress, Democrat leaders are ready to borrow more taxpayer dollars.

Let's hope that if a second stimulus is developed, it will stimulate the economy, not just spend taxpayer dollars on projects that have little to no impact on American job creation. I think there will be much more resistance from Americans who just want their money back. I am committed to ensuring Arkansans and all Americans have quality jobs to provide for their families, but like the first stimulus, I'm not optimistic a second stimulus would have far better results.

Tags: Arkansas, economic stimulus, John Boozman, Obama administration, Steny Hoyer, US Congress To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Blue Dog Democrats & Nationalized Health Care

by Robert Roman0, Senior Editor of ALG News Bureau: There's blue blood in the water. Congressman Mike Ross (D-AR-CD4), chairman of the Blue Dog Health Care Task Force, dropped a bombshell yesterday on Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi's plans to implement a so-called public "option" for health care.

Ross stated that if the House Majority brings their bill to the floor as proposed, an "overwhelming majority" of his 52 member coalition would vote against it. As well they should, a group that claims that their "top priority will be to refocus Congress on truly balancing the budget and ridding taxpayers of the burden the national debt places on them."

Congressman Ross' statement is encouraging, but it needs to be backed up by action to defeat any proposal that threatens to bankrupt the nation by creating another unsustainable entitlement. With the national debt now soaring above $11.4 trillion, unfunded liabilities in Medicare and Social Security totaling $104 trillion, a proposed annual budget of $3.6 trillion, and a projected deficit of $1.8 trillion this year alone, a vote in favor of a trillion dollar government-run health care plan would decidedly be against Blue Dog, fiscal conservative principles.

And with legislation moving through Congress at a frightening speed this year—trillion dollar "stimulus," carbon energy taxes, nearly a $4 trillion dollar budget, and now healthcare—with only 178 House Republicans, the only chance at saving privately-provided health options will be if Democrats vote against their leadership, and against this legislation.

But that will only happen if pressure is brought to bear on each and every member of the Blue Dog coalition and beyond. They must hear from the more than 201.7 million constituents who possess privately-provided health care as of 2007—and would undoubtedly like to keep it and not be forced to trade it in for a substandard government plan. For, unless the users of health care defend what is rightly theirs, the so-called public "option" will take over the entire system, devouring all other options.

What's worse is the exact details are not yet publicly known of the plan. And it is moving swiftly: House Democrat leaders plan on unveiling it today, and committee votes are expected as early as next week. Only there's just one small problem. They have not even shown it to their Blue Dog colleagues yet.

"We've just got a lot of questions and the top of the list would be how to pay for it," said Congressman Marion Berry (D-AR-CD1). That, of course, is an excellent question, since the only way to pay for any new spending programs with the country in such a steep deficit will be to borrow more cash from overseas, raise taxes, or print more dollars.

And in all of the above financing alternatives, the American people will wind up paying more. Borrowing too much leads to higher interest rates as U.S. debt becomes less attractive of an investment. Raising taxes obviously takes more money away from Americans to purchase their own health options. And firing up the printing presses leads to inflation, which will mean higher prices on just about everything, including health care, thus fueling the bottom line of whatever proposal is enacted.

But that may not even be the worst of it. An even more fundamental question to be answered about the so-called public "option" is: Who will qualify? If it is truly to be an option for all Americans, then in principle everyone would qualify. And if that's the case, say goodbye to private health care, as everyone starts lining up for government freebies.

Advocates of the public "option" claim that it will be "cheaper" than private care. That they want to cut health care costs—which in reality means price controls that unfortunately always lead to shortages. It will also put private insurers who attempt to compete out of business, since they cannot borrow trillions of dollars to stay in the black.

As a result, even if government does not issue free health care outright, and just heavily subsidizes individuals and employers to switch to the government plan, the net effect will still be a state-run monopoly that crowds out private options, long lines at the doctor's office, and a declining quality of care as doctors are forced to take pay cuts and yet work even longer hours.

So, the Blue Dog Democrats really ought to consider the 201.7 million American people who like the quality of their privately-provided health care that is unparalleled anywhere in the world. Because they do not need "more time" to consider this plan. They need to know that there's somebody in Congress who is going to fight to help them keep their options.

Tags: Americans for Limited Government, Arkansas, Blue Dogs, health care, Marion Berry, Mike Ross, nationalized health care, Robert Romano To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Twisted and Paper-thin

by William Warren:

Tags: increased taxes, political cartoon, political satire, William Warren To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Today in Washington D. C. - July 10, 2009

Last night, the Senate passed H.R. 2892, the fiscal year 2010 Homeland Security appropriations bill, by a vote of 84-6. The bill provides $44.3 billion for Homeland Security programs including $16 billion for customs, border protection and immigration and $8.9 billion for the Coast Guard.

Prior to final passage, the Senate rejected amendments from Sens. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) to strip an earmark for an emergency center in Montana, John McCain (R-AZ) to strip an earmark for a training center in West Virginia, and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) to increase FEMA firefighter assistance grants. The Senate approved an amendment from Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) to require contracts or grants be awarded by competitive bids except for awards to small businesses or those owned by women or minorities.

On Monday, the Senate is expected to take up the fiscal 2010 Defense authorization bill, S. 1390, and hold a cloture vote on the nomination of Robert Gr0ves to be Census director. ARRA News Service previously reported on Groves involvement with ACORN and Groves' refusal "to rule out paying ACORN lieutenants tens of millions of tax dollars to, of all things, count the number of Americans who should receive federally funded hand-outs and be allowed to vote." Also on Monday, the Judiciary Committee will begin hearings on the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to be an associate justice of the Supreme Court at 10 AM.

Obama's Week: It’s been a rough week for President Obama’s signature initiatives, with continuing criticism of the ineffective $787 billion stimulus bill, Democrats unable to get their act together on health care bills, and the climate tax bill stalling. However, he will manage to drop by to visit with Pope at Vatican City today.

Following last week’s dismal job numbers, including an increase of the unemployment rate to 9.5%, the worst in 26 years, Vice President Joe Biden on Sunday claimed that the administration “misread how bad the economy was” when pushing for its staggeringly expensive stimulus package. Of course, that’s not what the administration said at the time, leading to renewed criticism of the stimulus bill.

A report released by the Government Accountability Office in the middle of the week only raised further concerns when it found that states are using stimulus money “for short-term projects and to fill budget gaps rather than spending on long-term improvements,” according to USA Today. In a New York Times analysis piece titled, “Doubts About Obama’s Economic Recovery Plan Rise Along With Unemployment," the NY Times related, “Administration officials had predicted that the stimulus program would save or create 600,000 jobs by summer. But the economy has lost more than two million jobs since Mr. Obama took office, and officials now estimate that the program has saved only about 150,000 jobs.” (Of course, the administration has yet to provide any measurement of just how many jobs the stimulus has supposedly “saved or created.”)

All of this resulted in a week of Democrats bickering with each other and the White House over whether a second stimulus would be necessary, or even a good idea. Appearing on Greta van Susteren’s show, Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell summed up the general Republican view of such an idea, saying, “we had a great saying down home in Kentucky that there’s no education in the second kick of a mule.”

Meanwhile, throughout the week, Democrats in the Senate struggled to come up with workable health reform bills and ways to pay for a government-run insurance program. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid waded into the morass in the middle of the week to rule out taxing health benefits, which led Democrats scrambling for other ideas that included income surtaxes and taxes on beer and soda. And as Senate Democrats toiled, rank-and-file House Democrats put the brakes on the unveiling of their health bill today. Politico reports, “House Democrats of every stripe filled the speaker’s mailbox with a torrent of missives to make their case for what they do and don’t want in the legislation – all while tax-writers struggled to agree on ways to pay for it.”

In an attempt to give the impression of momentum, the White House rolled out another deal, this time with hospital groups, to “save” billions of dollars in health care costs over the next decade. But the announcement was swiftly questioned in the same way previous savings deals were, with many wondering whether any of these savings would actually materialize. The administration also spent much of the week arguing with Democrats in Congress, and even President Obama’s own chief of staff, as to the necessity of a government-run insurance plan. Further, it issued a harsh rebuke to House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman (D-CA) who questions whether the White House was obligated to abide by any of the health deals it has struck.

On top of all of this, President Obama’s push to regulate carbon emissions ran into roadblocks this week. He was unable to get an agreement at the G-8 summit from China, India, and other developing nations “to commit to specific goals for slashing heat-trapping gases by 2050.” And yesterday, Senate Democrats scrapped a plan to begin working on their version of a burdensome cap-and-trade carbon regulating scheme, pushing committee consideration back into the fall.

Clearly, it’s been a tough week for Obama and Democrats on their key issues. Perhaps they’re looking forward to changing the subject next week when confirmation hearings on Judge Sonia Sotomayor begin.

Tags: Barack Obama, conservative democrats, energy bill, federal spending, increase taxes, nationalized health care, Robert Groves, 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!

Thursday, July 09, 2009

The Truth About the Democrat Energy (Cap-and-Trade) Bill

Truth # 1- Federal Government Intrusion: The Federal Government Wants to Tell You How to Build Your House What the bill does: The House-passed bill establishes a national building code for commercial and residential buildings, requiring a 30 percent reduction in energy use immediately after passage and an additional 50 percent reduction in energy use by 2014 for residential buildings and 2015 for commercial buildings (Bill as report Sec. 201, p. 297). What this means for consumers: Bureaucrats in Washington D.C. will tell you how to build your house. This will also create a whole new bureaucracy in Washington and more intrusion into the lives of Americans. [Source]

Truth #2: Democrats Want Fannie and Freddie to do to our National Energy Policy what They Have Done to the Housing Market What the bill does: The House-passed energy bill provides additional credit for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to advance energy efficient and “location-efficient" mortgages. The bill also authorizes the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to guarantee portions of a mortgage used to “green” single-family and multi-family housing. (Sec. 286 of the Manager’s Amendment, p. 112, and Sec 299I of the Manager’s Amendment, p. 173.) What this means for Americans: These provisions put taxpayers on the hook for more mortgages that may default. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have made taxpayers potentially liable for more than $5 trillion in our current housing crisis. Instead of reforming Fannie and Freddie, why are Democrats expanding their authority into energy policy? [Source]

Truth #3: Creates the Largest Welfare Program in Our Nation's History What the bill does: The bill (H.R. 2454) requires the Secretary of Health and Human Services to provide monthly cash payments, or “energy stamps”, to low-income households for their estimated “loss in their purchasing power” resulting from the Democrats’ national energy tax. The bill establishes a national standard of eligibility (covering everyone under 150% of the poverty line). Energy stamps would reach an estimated 65 million individuals (about 20% of all US residents) – making it a larger program than welfare, food stamps, or even Medicaid. (H.R. 2454, American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009, Sec. 431, p. 1193) What this means for Americans: If, as Democrats claim, their national energy tax will create millions of well-paying “green jobs,” then why do we need to create a new energy welfare program? The Democrats’ national energy tax plan will raise energy costs on all Americans. Democrats know this so they created the largest welfare program in American history to compensate for those increased costs. Despite the massive scope of this program, more than 200 million Americans will not receive benefits, just energy tax hikes without direct relief. [Source]

Truth #4: Promotes “Green Banks” At a Time of Record Job Losses What the bill does: Requires federal banking agencies and the National Credit Union Administration Board to encourage insured depository institutions and credit unions to establish and maintain “green banking” centers. These centers will provide consumers who seek information on obtaining a mortgage, home improvement loan, or home equity loan with additional information on obtaining a home energy rating or audit, financing for cost-effective energy-saving improvements, and obtaining beneficial financing terms for meeting energy efficiency standards. (H.R. 2454, American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009, Sec. 299E, p. 659) What this means for Americans: With the national unemployment rate reaching 9.5%, Democrats are making the establishment of “green banking” centers their priority, instead of focusing on job creation. The Democrats’ national energy tax plan will help ensure that these “green banking” centers are established across the country. At the expense of working families across the country, Democrats have passed the largest tax increase and job relocation bill in American history. As a result, commerce will come to a grinding halt. The best way to help domestic banks is to reverse course and support the Republican “all of the above” energy plan, the American Energy Act. [Source]

Truth #5: Taxpayer-Funded Mobile Homes What the bill does: The Democrats’ national energy tax requires electricity providers and gasoline distributers to purchase from the federal government carbon emission "allowances" The federal government will then offer “allowances” to states that provide tax-rebates of up to $7,500 toward the purchase of a new Energy Star qualified manufactured home. To qualify for the rebate, an individual has to own a manufactured home constructed prior to 1976 and have a household income that does not exceed 200% of the poverty level. (H.R. 2454, American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009, Sec. 203, page 372.) What this means for Americans: The costs of these “allowances” will be passed on to consumers, increasing fuel prices on families by an estimated 58% and increasing electricity rates by an estimated 90% by 2035. Some of the revenue from these increased costs will be used to purchase new mobile homes. At a time when Americans already face rising energy costs and the country faces high unemployment, Democrats want taxpayers to pick up the bill for mobile home parks? [Source]

Truth #6: Uses American Tax Dollars to Plant Trees What the bill does: Authorizes such “sums as may be necessary” to cover up to 50% of the cost of tree planting programs by retail power providers. To receive taxpayer-funded support, the trees must increase shade during the summer months or protect from wind during the fall and winter months, so to reduce energy consumption for cooling and heating. (H.R. 2454, American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009, Sec. 205, page 393.) What this means for Americans: Almost half a million people lost their jobs in June alone and Democrats want taxpayers to subsidize retail power providers and their tree planting programs. Runaway reckless spending is not going to get America back to work. Because of the Democrats’ national energy tax millions more jobs will be lost as American manufacturers relocate overseas, but at least homes and empty warehouses will have shade. [Source]

Truth #7: Yet Another Taxpayer-Funded Giveaway to ACORN What the bill does: The bill allocates taxpayer funds to groups like ACORN, to advise and train eligible “community development organizations” how to reduce the carbon footprint of residents in “affordable housing.” (H.R. 2454, American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009, Sec. 298, p. 638.)
What this means for Americans: The American people will see their tax dollars go to so-called community activist organizations like ACORN, to teach low-income residents how to live in accord with the worldview of the Environmental Left. [Source]

Truth #8: Increases Utility Rates on America’s Families and Businesses What the bill does: Mandates a Renewable Electricity Standard, or RES, that requires retail electricity providers to generate 20% of their electricity from renewable energy sources, like wind and solar energies. The utility companies must meet this new standard by 2020. (H.R. 2454, American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009, Sec. 101, p. 12.) What this means for Americans: The American people will see their utility bills, in the words of President Obama, “necessarily skyrocket.” As a candidate for the presidency, then-Senator Obama noted that because of his energy plan utility companies would be forced to “retrofit” their operations. This will cost money and those costs will be passed onto American energy consumers. As a result, Americans will face skyrocketing electricity rates as utility companies pass on the costs of constructing and bringing new renewable forms of energy online. At a time when America’s families are struggling and need relief from higher prices across the board, the Democrats have proposed a massive national energy tax. [Source]

Tags: building codes, cap-and-trade, Democrats, energy bill, green banks, homes, jobs, job losses, utility costs, welfare To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

NO to Robert Groves and ACORN Corruption!

Barack Obama -- the former attorney for the corrupt Association of Community Organization and Reform Now (ACORN) -- has now nominated for Census Bureau czar a man who (perhaps not surprisingly) refuses to rule out paying ACORN lieutenants tens of millions of tax dollars to, of all things, count the number of Americans who should receive federally funded hand-outs and be allowed to vote.

On May 19 of this year, Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) asked Obama Census Czar nominee Robert Groves for a firm commitment that he would not hire ACORN operatives to count the U.S. populace. And it is even less wonder that Mr. Vitter has now put a hold on the Groves' nomination, since Mr. Groves refuses to extend the Senator even the courtesy of a response, let alone a commitment to protect the sanctity of the census from the voraciously corrupt ACORN lieutenants. . . . Get the full story

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has threatened to invoke a cloture vote Monday morning to break Mr. Vitter’s hold on Mr. Groves. It’s time to tell the members of the Senate in no uncertain terms: “If Robert Groves won’t commit to keeping ACORN away from the census count, we want him kept away from the Census Bureau.” The Senate switchboard number is 202-225-3121. Also see: Corruption is ACORN - Watch This Video!
Tags: ACORN, Barack Obama, Census, Census Bureau, David Vitter, Harry Reid, Robert Groves To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Today in Washington D. C. - July 9, 2009 - Senate Doctors to Address Obama Care

The Senate resumed consideration of the fiscal year 2010 Homeland Security appropriations bill, H.R. 2892 and will vote on an amendment from Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) to strip an earmark for an emergency center in Montana.

Yesterday, rejected an amendment from from Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) to make FEMA grants competitively bid, regardless of congressional earmarks. However, the Senate agreed to an amendment to the Homeland Security appropriations bill from Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) to require the completion of at least 700 miles of border fencing by the end of 2010. In addition, the Senate stopped an motion to table an amendment by Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) then passed the amendment by voice vote to make E-Verify permanent -- 12 Democrats and 1 Independent defied Party leadership and voted with all 40 Republicans to:
  • permanently authorize E-Verify, pro-amnesty forces can't constantly threaten to kill it if they don't get their way

  • require all federal contractors to use E-Verify so returning veterans and other unemployed Americans will get jobs created with federal tax money.

  • All 40 Republicans
    Voted For E-Verify

    Democrats who Switched
    to Support E-Verify:

    Kent Conrad (D-ND)
    Bryon Dorgan (D-ND)
    Kay Hagan (D-NC)
    Mary Landrieu (D-LA)
    Joe Lieberman (I/D-CN)
    Blanche Lincoln (D-AR)
    Mark Pryor (D-AR)
    John Rockefeller (D-WV)
    Democrats who
    already Supported E-Verfy:

    Max Baucus (D-MT)
    Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
    Claire McCaskill (D-MO)
    Ben Nelson (D-NE)
    John Tester (D-MT)

    Backsliders voting with
    other Democrats Against
    American Workers:

    Evan Bayh (D-IN)
    Jim Webb (D-VA)
    Socialized Health Care: With President Obama’s push for government-run health insurance again running into problems among Democrats in Congress, the White House resorted to a familiar tactic yesterday in order to create the impression of momentum by announcing yet another deal with a health group to create “savings.” However, it’s becoming clear to many that the administration’s announcements are mainly PR exercises and it’s unclear whether any of these savings will actually materialize.

    In a must-read article, The Washington Post writes today, “The Obama administration, hoping to boost its health-care reform effort with financial concessions from the hospital and pharmaceutical industries, is instead confronting deep dissension on several fronts within Democratic ranks and possible defections among key constituencies.”

    Politico reports that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid jumped into negotiations among Finance Committee Democrats struggling to produce a health reform bill to announce that Democrat leaders are not open to taxing health benefits in order to pay for such a bill. Politico writes, “Reid’s move blows a gigantic hole in efforts to find $1 trillion to pay for health reform - and set off a scramble Wednesday to come up with a replacement for the suddenly missing $320 billion over 10 years.”

    Energy Bill - Cap-in-Trade (aka Crap&Tax): Meanwhile, House Energy & Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman (D-CA), “lead House architect of the landmark health legislation, warned yesterday that he is not obligated to abide by deals struck recently by the White House, Senate Finance Committee, industry executives and interest groups such as AARP,” according to The Washington Post. But the White House came down hard on Waxman in what Politico deemed an “unusually stark rebuke,” claiming, “We are absolutely part of these agreements and bound by them.” Can you believe that AARP is interfering in government and on the side of higher taxes and nationalized health care? Apparently the libtards have assumed all the key positions at AARP, worship Obama and screw-over their membership.

    Waxman is not the only one raising questions about these supposed deals. The Washington Post described the deal with drug companies, which Waxman questioned, as “managed for maximum public relations exposure.” And Roll Call said that it was “unclear how it would directly benefit the health reform effort.” That seems to be the common thread among all the White House’s announcements of deals with health groups to produce “savings.”

    Sure enough, The Associated Press reported that yesterday’s deal with major hospital associations, announced by Vice President Joe Biden, “may also be on shaky ground.” What do we expect if "shaky" Biden is announcing something? Biden has been shaking since he met Sarah Palin in the 2009 V.P. Debate.

    And The Washington Post noted today that the deal “was quickly undermined by skepticism in the industry. . . .‘Everyone can say we need to reform the system,’ said one state hospital official, who requested anonymity to discuss the internal rift. ‘But when you start to look at the details of how you do that, that’s when you get the rats scurrying off the ship. That’s what’s happening now.’” The article in The Post goes on to note the limited nature of the agreement between drug companies and the AARP and notes several state hospitals oppose yesterday’s deal.

    In stark contrast to the Democrats’ infighting over tax increases and the White House’s troublesome PR efforts, Senate Republicans are standing tall and calling for the right kind of reform, that “make[s] health care less expensive and easier to obtain without destroying what’s good about our system.” The Republican Senate doctors, Tom Coburn, M.D. of Oklahoma, and John Barrasso, M.D. of Wyoming are launching a live online show today to discuss Republican ideas for health reform and explain why the Democrats’ approach is the wrong one for America.

    Tags: AARP, doctors, e-verify, Homeland Security, nationalized health care, US Congress, US Senate, Washington D.C., Where's the Fence, border security To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

    Senate Republican Doctors Launch the “Senate Doctors Show”

    The Senate Republican Conference has announced that a new, live, online show – “Senate Doctors” – broadcasting every Tuesday and Thursday at 4:00 p.m. Eastern time. The first show will airs today - Thursday, July 9, 2009 at 4:00 p.m ET.

    Senator John Barrasso, M.D. (R-WY) – an orthopedic trauma surgeon and former President of the Wyoming Medical Society – and Senator Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK) – a family practice physician specializing in obstetrics – will be regular hosts, with guests making appearances. The show will focus on policy discussions, with constituents sharing their questions, stories, concerns, and comments about health care proposals being debated in Congress.

    Barrasso said, “We all agree that health care needs reform. Having practiced medicine for over two decades in Wyoming, I know that the devil is in the details. Doing nothing is simply not an option. We must be careful, we must be thoughtful, and we must be deliberate about the changes we make. Health care is a very complex and intensely personal issue. It deserves a serious, open, and transparent national debate. ‘Senate Doctors’ will allow more Americans to participate in that discussion.”

    Coburn said, “As a practicing physician, I know that the doctor patient relationship is at the heart of medicine. Unfortunately, some in the Senate want to severe that relationship and put unaccountable and unqualified politicians and government bureaucrats in charge of medicine. Having a government board dictate medical treatments based on abstract economic data – not medical knowledge, or years of experience – is wrong for Americans and my patients. Republicans are committed to making health care more affordable while letting doctors and patients call the shots.”

    For more information, to submit questions and comments, or to tune in, visit the “Senate Doctors Show”. Viewers can send questions and comments via e-mail, Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter from this site. Barrasso and Coburn will respond to a sampling of questions in future episodes.

    Tags: conservatives, GOP, Republican Party, wisdom, Wyoming To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

    Wednesday, July 08, 2009

    Honor the Jackson 5 - Real Heroes

    They following brave people will NEVER get the media coverage they deserve or anything equal to the praise and coverage lavished on the Jackson 5 musical family. This week at the passing of Michael Jackson the world weeps at the death of a recording artist and entertainer who made hundreds of millions of dollars from his music.

    While most Americans are thinking about Michael Jackson, we hope you will join us and think about the Jacksons 5 - young men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice for America.
    Army Pfc. Leslie D. Jackson

    18, of Richmond, Va.; assigned to A Company, 115th Forward Support Battalion, 1st Cavalry Division, Ft. Hood, Texas; killed May 20 when her vehicle hit an improvised explosive device as she was returning to Camp Eagle in Baghdad.
    Army Staff Sgt. William S. Jackson II

    29, of Saginaw, Mich.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 16th Engineer Battalion, 1st Brigade, 1st Armored Division, Giessen, Germany; died Nov. 11 of injuries sustained when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle during combat operations in Ramadi, Iraq.
    Army Spc. Dustin C. Jackson

    21, of Arlington, Texas; assigned to the 350th Adjutant General Company, Grand Prairie, Texas; died March 12 in Tallil, Iraq, of wounds sustained when his vehicle was hit by indirect fire.
    Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Kyle E. Jackson

    28, of Sarasota, Fla.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 10th Aviation Regiment, 10th Mountain Division, Fort Drum, NY; killed Jan. 13 when his OH-58D Kiowa Warrior helicopter came under attack by enemy forces using small-arms fire near Sukar, Iraq.
    Army Spc. Marlon P. Jackson

    25, of Jersey City, NJ; assigned to A Company, 94th Engineer Battalion (Combat) (Heavy), 130th Engineer Brigade, Vilseck, Germany; died Nov. 11 of injuries sustained when an improvised explosive device exploded on a road in Tampa, Iraq.
    These were all brave soldiers who risked their lives, put everything on the line, to protect their friends and family and their country, which they loved so much that they sacrificed their own lives to protect it.

    With all the media hype surrounding the celebrities and the cult of personality built up around high-profile entertainers, it is predictable that you may not have heard of THIS Jackson five, and no matter where you look on TV they will still be covering Michael Jackson’s elaborate funeral.

    But that doesn’t give us an excuse to forget about our troops and the sacrifices they have made. Honor their teammates still on the front lines fighting against the terrorists, preserving our freedom and security back home.
    The above is a public service reminder of our troops and their sacrifices. Consider sending a "care package to our troops deployed in service to our country. Moving America Forward is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and all contributions are tax-deductible.

    Tags: American Heroes, care packages, heroes, Jackson 5, Michael Jackson, military, military deaths, military troops To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

    Is the NRA Executive Director Waffling on Gun Rights & Judge Sotomayor?

    by Bill Smith, ARRA Editor: The Washington Times posted an article today titled"NRA raises concerns over Sotomayor." NRA Executive Director Chris W. Cox wrote in a letter to U.S. Senators, "The cases in which Judge Sotomayor has participated have been dismissive of the Second Amendment and have troubling implications for future cases that are certain to come before the Court. Therefore, we believe that America's 80 million gun owners have good reason to worry about her views."

    While at first glance it appears that the NRA is going to oppose the confirmation of Sotomayor, NRA members and american gun owners had better not get their hopes up that the NRA is best supporting them in this situation. For The Times' article leads off with the statement, "The National Rifle Association said Tuesday that it would actively oppose Supreme Court nominee Judge Sonia Sotomayor's confirmation if she is hostile to senators who press her about gun rights." What kind of wimpy statement is that?

    If The Washington Times article is incorrect, then NRA Director Cox needs to be all over The Times for a retraction. Also, the NRA needs to clarify that they are opposing the confirmation of Sotomayor. After all. who cares if she is hostile to the senators asking questions. Many of us would be hostile to today's senators asking us questions. What matters is that Sotomayor may be hostile to or at minimum dismissive of citizen's gun rights by holding that 2nd Amendment rights are only valid against Federal jurisdiction but are not valid rights protected within jurisdictions of the States. What's next, restriction of 1st Amendment free speech? All States upon admission as a State to the USA were required to ratify that they support the U.S. Constitution. Has the Supreme Court ruled that this ratification has no merit? If it has no merits, why should any State have to follow any amendment or requirement in the U.S. Constitution or for that matter, any of the laws passed by the Federal Government?

    However, if today's Washington Times report is correct, then America's 80 million gun owners are not being represented by the NRA and the NRA members are wasting their time with Chris Cox as NRA Executive Director. Silence or a wait to see "how Sotomayor treats the senators" are not options for the executive director of the NRA. Again, if the Times was in error, Director Cox your immediate attention and action are needed to remediate this situation on behalf of 80 million gun owners! Please, let us know what you have done to correct this situation with The Times and what you have done to send a clear message to the US Senate that the NRA is opposing the confirmation of Judge Sotomayor.
    Tags: 2nd Amendment, ARRA News Service, Bill Smith, Chris W. Cox, gun rights, Judge Sonia Sotomayor, nominations, NRA, US Supreme Court To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

    Today in Washington D. C. - July 8, 2009 - John McCain Not Doing Well With His Former "My Friends" the Democrats

    The Senate began consideration of the fiscal year 2010 Homeland Security appropriations bill, H.R. 2892. Was to vote on amendments from Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) to reauthorize the e-Verify program and Jim DeMint (R-SC) to require the completion of at least 700 miles of border fencing by the end of 2010. Yesterday, the Senate voted 47-51 against an amendment from Sen. John McCain (R-AZ)to eliminate a grant program and reduce funds for state and local FEMA programs. Note: Sen. John McCain is not doing so well with his old "my friends"the Democrat senators who again reject another of his amendments.

    Judge Sonia Sotomayor: As the Senate Judiciary Committee prepares to begin hearings on the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court next week, Senate Republicans are concerned about whether she will use her policy preferences to make law from the bench.

    When Judge Sotomayor’s name was being considered for a nomination to the high court, one of the first things Americans learned about her was from a video of an appearance she made at Duke University in 2005, where she said that “court of appeals is where policy is made.” Given that a Supreme Court Justice is in a role higher than that of an appeals court judge, there is some concern that she might take this view to the high court, especially in light of her ruling in the now-famous Ricci case.

    It’s now known that while Sotomayor was an adviser to the Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund, the group (per the AP) “brought several discrimination lawsuits that sought to scrap the results of job tests because too few Hispanics scored well.” The Wall Street Journal noted, “The Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund filed several lawsuits on behalf of minority employees alleging that promotional examinations were racially biased, obtaining judgments or settlements that guaranteed their promotion, sometimes ahead of white employees with higher scores.”

    Sen. Mitch McConnell explained the problem in a floor speech yesterday: “As has been reported, before she was on the bench, Judge Sotomayor was in leadership positions with PRLDEF for over a decade. While there, she monitored the group’s lawsuits and was described as an ‘ardent supporter’ of its litigation projects—one of the most important of which was a plan to sue cities based on their use of civil service exams. In fact, she has been credited with helping develop the group’s policy of challenging these types of standardized tests." When the Ricci case reached Judge Sotomayor on the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals, “[s]he ruled that the government can intentionally discriminate against one group on the basis of race if it dislikes the outcome of a race-neutral exam and claims that another group may sue it. . . . [A]s Judge Cabranes put it, under her approach, employers can ‘reject the results of an employment examination whenever those results failed to yield a desired racial outcome, i.e., failed to satisfy a racial quota.’” Note: when the Supreme Court overturned Sotomayor’s ruling in its review of the Ricci case, “No one on the Supreme Court, not even the dissenters, thought [hers] was a correct reading of the law.”
    The New York Times writes today that next week, “Republicans say they intend to focus on what they see as Judge Sotomayor’s willingness to bring a personal agenda to the court, especially when it comes to issues of race.” A GOP aide has advised that Republicans will “Respectfully ask questions but very pointedly ask about the appearance of favoritism. Americans don’t like the idea that a judge might play favorites.”

    Sen. McConnell summarized the problem: “In the Ricci case — her third and final reversal of this term — Judge Sotomayor was so wrong in interpreting the law that all nine justices, of all ideological stripes, disagreed with her. As we consider her nomination to the Supreme Court, my colleagues should ask themselves this important question: is she allowing her personal or political agenda to cloud her judgment and favor one group of individuals over another, irrespective of what the law says?”

    Tags: John McCain, Mitch McConnell, Sonia Sotomayor, 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!

    Tuesday, July 07, 2009

    Iran's Nukes: The Russian Connection

    by Michael Fenenbock, DeNuke Iran: Iran intends to become a nuclear power and Russia is their greatest enabler. This cannot come as news to anybody. So what's up with this summit in Moscow? President Obama just held talks with Putin and Medvedev and apparently never even mentioned Russia's support for Iran's nuclear ambitions.

    Surely the President knows about the Russian connection. It's not like it's secret. I mean, here's some of what's public knowledge.
    • Russia is responsible for construction of the Iranian nuclear power plant at Bushehr.
    • Russia is supplying Iran with nuclear fuel with no provisions for dealing with spent nuclear fuel.
    • Russia has provided "blueprints" for Iran's development of a heavy water nuclear reactor.
    • Official Russia turns a blind eye while Iran obtains uranium mining and milling technology from Russian companies.
    • Russia is Iran's close partner when it comes to delivery systems - building missiles. At least seven Russian companies expert in missile technology are operating in Iran.
    President Obama says his principal foreign policy goal is to "remake America's image in the world." He wants to be liked. And to that end, while in Moscow, he delivered a "please like me" speech aimed at the Russian people. But this is Russia and in Russia you play by the Bear's rules. President Obama's speech was carried only on the least watched Russian TV channel (think C-Span). On the other hand, Mr. Putin's finger wagging lecture to Mr. Obama about the Cold War and American arrogance received extensive coverage on all Russian media.

    In all honesty, Mr. President, I would rather America was respected and feared than liked. The regime in Tehran wants nuclear weapons. The Russians are helping them. See also: DeNuke Iran Activist Community

    Tags: Barack Obama, DeNuke Iran, Disarmament, Iran, Putin, Russia, Russian To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

    The Democrats Have Total Control - 60 votes in Senate

    Rob Jesmer, NRSC Executive Director: With U.S. Senator-elect Al Franken (D-MN) solidifying the Democrats' 60-member supermajority in the United States Senate, the Democrats have total control. No debate on their reckless liberal agenda. And no excuses for their failed policies. The Democrats own everything and have no one to blame now.

    Now that Democrat Senate Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) finally has a filibuster-proof U.S. Senate majority, Reid can ram Democrat initiatives through Congress without a bipartisan debate, including card check, government-run health care, increased spending, and higher taxes. With no checks or balances, the Democrats now have a tight grip over Washington. This is now their debt, their tax hikes. Hold the Democrats accountable for their reckless fiscal policies by preparing to support Republicans so that essential checks and balances are restored in 2010.

    Review the following video and share with friends:

    Tags: 60 seats, Al Franken, bailouts, cap-and-trade, Democrat, Excessive spending, Harry Reid, increased taxes, Nancy Pelosi, NRSC, stimulus, supermajority, US Congress, US Senate, video To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

    Today in Washington D. C. - July 7, 2009 - Empty Promises

    Senate will begin consideration of the fiscal year 2010 Homeland Security appropriations bill, H.R. 2892. Sadly, Al Franken will be sworn in today as senator for the state of Minnesota. Yesterday, the Senate passed the fiscal year 2010 Legislative Branch appropriations bill, H.R. 2918, by a vote of 67-25 after refusing an amendment from Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) to strip an earmark from the bill providing money to a museum in Nebraska.

    Socialized Health Care: As we learn more about the mistakes made when the administration and Democrats in Congress rushed the costly stimulus bill to approval, Americans are rightly concerned about a similar rush on health care legislation.

    Today, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell reminded Americans about the way the stimulus bill was passed. “Earlier this year, advocates of the stimulus said that the bill had to pass right away, with minimal scrutiny and minimal bipartisan support. They gave the American people less than 24 hours to review one of the costliest pieces of legislation in history, and then they hoped for a good result. The reason for the rush is clear. Proponents of the stimulus were concerned that public support would start to fade if people got a closer look at the details. So they short-changed the debate and overpromised on results. And now their predictions are coming back to them.”

    Back in February, Americans were told that the economy would face “catastrophe” without swift passage of the $787 billion stimulus bill. President Obama said, “if we don’t act immediately, then millions more jobs will disappear [and] the national unemployment rates will approach double digits . . . .” The administration predicted the unemployment rate would not exceed 8% if the stimulus passed, but it stands at 9.5% today. The administration predicted the stimulus would create up to 4 million jobs, but the AP writes, “Since Obama signed the $787 billion economic stimulus bill in February, the economy has shed more than 2 million jobs.” The administration promised “unprecedented responsibility” in stimulus spending, but Vice President Joe Biden admitted last month, “We know some of this money is going to be wasted … Some people are being scammed already.”

    Asked about the promises made on the stimulus bill, compared to the economic reality on Sunday, Biden said, “We misread how bad the economy was.” Sen. McConnell added today, “These were costly mistakes, and we can’t take them back. . . . [N]ow that Americans are hearing the same kinds of arguments about health care that we heard about the stimulus, the taxpayer antenna should go up.” Indeed, the administration has already begun making promises it clearly cannot keep. Obama said last month, “[W]e must preserve what is best about our health care system, and that means allowing Americans who like their doctors and their health care plans to keep them.” But according to the AP, “[N]o president could guarantee such a pledge.” And several news outlets pointed out that Obama “had to concede” that “he wasn’t saying ‘no one’ will take away any American’s health insurance” under his government plan.

    The Washington Post noted that despite assurances during the campaign that middle-class voters would not see a tax increase, the White House has refused to rule out “a tax hike on health insurance plans that would hit middle-income Americans.” And The Wall Street Journal noted, “A proposal in the Senate to limit tax deductions for medical costs would fall hardest on middle-income taxpayers who are uninsured and who come up against expensive health problems.” Bloomberg features a story today titled, “Obama’s Health Plan Sparks Unease Among Nation’s Middle Class.” The story includes Strawberry Point, Iowa resident Shelly Syverson’s observation, “The middle class always get stuck paying for everything.”

    Sen. McConnell explained today, “Americans who are now waking up to headlines about the problems with the stimulus don’t want to be told a few months from now that the people who sold them a government-run health care system misread the state of our health care industry, or that the health care plan they’re proposing was based on faulty assumptions. . . . On the stimulus, Americans saw what happens when Democrats rush and spend. When it comes to health care, they are demanding we take the time to get it right.”

    Tags: economic stimulus, empty promises, Socialized medicine, 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!

    Monday, July 06, 2009

    Sarah Palin and “Blood Sport”

    For the media, the race is clearly in full swing, especially in regards to Sarah Palin. Reports of Sarah Palin's political death are highly exaggerated and reflect more the biases of the prophets, soothsayers and media talking heads than it does the political reality. Sarah Palin is a force in the GOP and one of the most promising figures in American politics whether she is governor of Alaska or not. It is totally premature to interpret Sarah Palin's announcement as a withdraw from American politics. A year from now, a lot of pundits may be eating their words. - Gary Bauer

    Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families: During her surprise weekend announcement, Sarah Palin bemoaned that American politics increasingly looks more like “blood sport” than it does legitimate debate. I agree. Thanks to figures like Saul Alinsky and his “Rules for Radicals,” the Left has put together a “kill machine,” funded by ideologues like George Soros, that is capable of destroying anyone who stands in the way. In recent months, Palin was the target of 15 ethics probes, all of them baseless, which cost her hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees to defend against.

    Plus, the Left has countless “volunteers” in Big Media and among the “chattering class” who are tireless in their efforts to smear conservative leaders. They have fired more of their barbs at Governor Palin than at anyone else in the GOP, while at the same time arguing that she has no chance to be president. If that’s so, why waste their ammo? Why are they so obsessed with her?

    Even as she announced that she was stepping down as governor at the end of the month, the Left was at her throat. They even attacked, once again, her son Trig, who has Down syndrome. In her remarks, Palin commented on Trig by saying that we need more such children because they teach us about our own humanity and the worth and value of all babies, even those society deems “less than perfect.”

    Within hours, the Huffington Post, the preeminent leftwing blog, had posted a piece under the guise of comedy claiming that Palin would run in 2012 on a “More Retardation platform.” The Huffington Post was not the only leftwing site to use that line of attack. The rhetoric was disgusting and I won’t dignify it by reprinting it. But you will notice that the “watchdogs” of Big Media – always ready to pounce on Rush Limbaugh for alleged mean-spiritedness – haven’t said a word about how mean-spirited these attacks on Palin and her son are.

    Meanwhile, while everyone predicts her political death, Governor Palin made it clear in her own online communications that she intends to remain a leader in the battle for conservative ideas. She told supporters to “hang in there” as critics “feed false info” to the media. She promised she would try to build a national consensus around smaller government, a strong national defense, fiscal responsibility and energy independence.

    I want to save my last word on this today for some fellow Republicans. Once again, I watched in disgust this weekend as Democrats were joined by some Republicans in taking shots at Governor Palin. Ed Rollins, a longtime GOP consultant and advisor to Mike Huckabee, said her announcement was “suspicious.” Mike Huckabee himself couldn’t resist a negative “analysis” by suggesting her announcement raises questions of whether she can take the heat. A lot of GOP pollsters and consultants also weighed in with their political knives out.

    Their performance reminded me of the saying: “Liberals resurrect their dead, while conservatives bury their wounded.” Come on, guys! Let’s aim our fire at Obama and his socialist friends. Our first priority should be retaking Congress in 2010. There will be plenty time in 2011 and 2012 for the GOP presidential nomination to play out.

    Tags: Blood Sport, conservative, conservative democrats, Gary Bauer, Politics, Sarah Palin To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

    Honduras Outraged by Obama-Chavez Alliance

    ARRA News Service previously posted the story In Honduras, Freedom Restored with subsequent story by Cliff Kincaid, Now, Kincaid provides a followup expressing concerns by the citizens of Honduras. This followup story highlights again the importance of our prior questions: Why is Mr. Obama not supporting the legal transfer of power in Honduras? Why is he siding with the Marxist governments in South America?

    Cliff Kincaid writes [emphasis added]:
    They are mystified that an American president would want to return this Chavez puppet to power in Honduras.

    I continue to receive messages from Honduran citizens upset at the international media for their distorted coverage of the situation in the Central American country. The people support the ouster of Manuel "Mel" Zelaya, who is considered a puppet of Venezuelan Communist ruler Hugo Chavez. They are mystified that an American president would want to return this Chavez puppet to power in Honduras.

    One Honduran wrote:
    "The recent action taken by our Congress is highly supported by several organizations in support of peace and democracy: the State General Attorney, the Supreme Court, the Armed Forces, the private organizations and especially many young people. Mr. Zelaya broke the law on several occasions even after the Supreme Court stated that it was illegal. He had no respect for our laws and our Constitution.

    "It's not a new fact to the international media what are Chavez intentions over Central and South America. And we in Honduras don't want that. We don't want to go back to socialism or communism. We still believe very strongly in our democracy and very strongly in our freedom... We should be an example to Central American countries as well as South American countries who have not yet been influenced by Chavez.

    "May God bless our small but courageous country. And I hope the international media investigate very deeply. Send your people here and interview people from Congress and Supreme Court. Thank you again for reading our side of the story. We want a democracy, peace, freedom, and a president who doesn't believe he is above the law.

    "Many people don't know where Honduras is, but after this, they shall remember that Honduras said no to socialism and communism.

    "I'd also like to say that I am shocked by Mr. Obama's comments. Doesn't he know Mr. Zelaya is allied with Chavez? Doesn't he know that Mr. Zelaya wants to do in Honduras what Chavez did in Venezuela, Morales has done in Bolivia, Correa has done in Ecuador, Ortega in Nicaragua, as well as what Castro has done in Cuba?"
    Another wrote:
    "As you already know we are living in a horrible situation in our country and feel very disappointed and frustrated because we don't have the support of the international community.

    "How is it possible that other governments support a liar, a corrupt man, a 'Chavez wannabe,' as he is called in some articles, who also has strong links to the drug dealing business?

    "It's amazing. They have made him a martyr. We keep writing and writing and thankfully some people have responded. We now see articles in the Washington Post, Miami Herald, New York Post, Wall Street Journal to name a few, in favor or our actions and understanding it wasn't a coup. And to tell you the truth, they should have done this before! He was out of control.

    "I'm asking you, what more can we do? How can we get more people to believe that what we did was the right thing? Have you seen his speeches? Do you notice how incoherent he is? Do you see how he lies? For us it is so obvious, and that is what I wonder... how is it possible that people so well-prepared, so educated like the people in the U.N. and the U.S. government believe him? How come they are now on the same side of Hugo Chavez? Hugo Chavez talking about democracy? It's unbelievable. And it hurts.

    "I love Honduras and it hurts to see that we are alone. It hurts because we have witnessed how he has stolen, abused his power and how he has created a huge war between the Hondurans. By paying poor people and promising them false things, he does have their support. He speaks to them about God. It's amazing and sad. And now we see how this people who are badly influenced are vandalizing, destroying businesses when they protest. We had gone to marches, and they are all peaceful.

    "We are a poor and small country, but we love our country and we support the Armed Forces as well as the new president. We don't want a corrupt puppet of Chavez. What more can we do?"

    Tags: Accuracy in Media, Barack Obama, Cliff Kincaid, constitution, Freedom, Honduras, Honduras Revolution, Jose Manuel Zelaya Rosales, media bias, term limits, Zelaya Coup To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

    SCOTUS Nominee Sonia Sotomayor Connection with Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund

    Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama, ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, held a special blogger conference call today to discuss the upcoming hearings on President Obama’s nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. Judiciary Committee Chairman Pat Leahy has scheduled the hearings to begin on July 13th, but Republicans believe that it’s important to take the time needed to look at Judge Sotomayor’s full record, rather than rush to meet arbitrary deadlines for a vote on her nomination.

    To that end, Sen. Sessions wrote a letter to the White House last week asking about the 300 boxes of documents concerning Sotomayor’s time at the Puerto Rican Legal Defense Fund that hadn’t yet been made available to the committee. There are now some interesting press reports coming out about her time with the PRLDF that are worth reading.

    Sen. Sessions discussed the the important issue of Judge Sotomayor relationship with the Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund (PRLDEF).
    --PRLDEF is an activist legal organization that has taken highly controversial positions on a wide range of legal issues, including in cases remarkably similar to the New Haven Firefighters case.

    --From 1980 through 1992, Judge Sotomayor served in a variety of leadership roles in PRLDEF, including Chairperson of the Litigation and Education Committees.

    --According to the New York Times: “[f]or 12 years she was a top policy maker on the board of the Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund,” and was an “involved and ardent supporter of their various legal efforts,” “frequently meeting with the legal staff to review the status of cases.” J. Hoffman, A Breakthrough Judge: What She Always Wanted, The New York Times, Sept. 22, 1992.

    --Also from the New York Times: “…Ms. Sotomayor stood out, frequently meeting with the legal staff to review the status of cases, several former members said. . . . And so across her 12 years on the board . . . she played an active role as the defense fund staked out aggressive stances on issues like police brutality, the death penalty and voting rights.” Hernandez and D. Chen, Nominee’s Links With Advocates Fuel Her Critics, The New York Times, May 29, 2009.

    --As has been widely reported, Judge Sotomayor ruled against the New Haven Firefighters and sided with the City of New Haven’s decision to throw out their promotions. Judge Sotomayor did not provide a legal rationale for her decision. But, Judge Sotomayor was Chairperson of the PRLDEF’s Litigation Committee in 1987 when its active litigation docket included the following cases that may shed light on her judicial approach:

    In Hispanic Society of the Department of Sanitation v. N.Y.C. Dep’t of Sanitation, the Fund represented the plaintiffs “in regard to a claim that the Supervisor Examination has a severe disparate impact upon Hispanic test-takers.” In support of its claim, the report noted that “Hispanics comprised 5.2% of the test-takers and only 3.8% of the passers[.]”

    In Hispanic Police Society v. New York City Police Department, PRLDEF represented Hispanic police officers “challenging the examination of sergeant in the New York City Police Department as discriminatory and not job related.” Following discovery, the parties entered into a settlement that “provid[ed] for positions of sergeant consistent with the percentage of Hispanic test-takers.” To do so, the officers in question had to be advanced beyond others with higher scores.

    In Hispanic Police Society v. New York City Civil Service Commission, PRLDEF represented the plaintiffs in a “Title VII employment discrimination case challenging the validity of the examination for lieutenant in the New York City Police Department.” The report indicated that the parties entered into a settlement “allowing plaintiffs the opportunity to participate in the preparation of a new lieutenant’s test.”

    -- Judge Sotomayor supported the Fund’s efforts to oppose reinstatement of the death penalty in New York. The Fund based its opposition on factors including world opinion, the “inhuman psychological burden” it places on offenders, and the “evident racism” with which it is associated.

    --The Fund has filed numerous briefs on abortion-related cases before the Supreme Court, and has consistently argued that it “opposes any efforts to overturn or in any way restrict the rights recognized in Roe v. Wade.” PRLDEF has also argued aggressively against limitations on the public funding of abortions.

    --When New York Mayor David Dinkins criticized members of a radical Puerto Rican nationalist group and called them “assassins” because they shot members of Congress, the Fund criticized not the assassins, but the mayor. The President of PRLDEF, at a time when Judge Sotomayor was an active leader of the organization, claimed that it “lacked sensitivity” to call those individuals “assassins.” He also explained that for many people in Puerto Rico, these men were fighters for freedom and justice.

    Tags: bloggers, Jeff Sessions, PRLDEF, Puerto Rican legal Defense and Education Fund, Sonia Sotomayor, Supreme Court To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

    Today in Washington D. C. - July 6, 2009 - Biden: Economic Stimulus is not Working!

    The Senate reconvened today at 2 PM today and resumed consideration of the fiscal year 2010 Legislative Branch appropriations bill, H.R. 2918. At 5:30, the Senate will vote on an amendment to the bill from Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) to strip an earmark. Several other amendments will receive voice votes. A vote on final passage of the Legislative Branch appropriations bill is likely this evening. The Senate is then expected to begin consideration of the fiscal year 2010 Homeland Security appropriations bill, H.R. 2892.

    VP Biden Speaks: Appearing on ABC’s “This Week” yesterday, Vice President Joe Biden was asked about the administration’s $787 billion stimulus package that was rushed through in February in light of the increasing unemployment rate. Biden said, “We misread how bad the economy was . . . .”

    Except at the time the White House was pushing their massive spending bill, they were warning of catastrophic consequences if it wasn’t passed. On February 25th, Biden said on NBC’s “Today Show,” “[I]f we don’t do anything, every economist says we’re going to lose 4 to 5 million more jobs this year.” Speaking at a town hall meeting in Fort Meyers, Florida on February 10th, President Obama said, “[I]f we don’t act immediately, then millions more jobs will disappear; the national unemployment rates will approach double digits.” And a week earlier, Obama told House Democrats, “If we do not move swiftly to sign the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act into law, an economy that is already in crisis will be faced with catastrophe.”

    Stimulus Fails: But, the AP points out, “Since Obama signed the $787 billion economic stimulus bill in February, the economy has shed more than 2 million jobs.” The unemployment rate has “approach[ed] double digits,” and now stands at 9.5%, the worst in 26 years.

    When the stimulus bill was being debated, Republicans warned that it was not timely, targeted, or temporary. Yesterday, according to ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, Biden “argued more time is needed for the stimulus to work.” But if the stimulus was designed to prevent the problems we are now seeing, it clearly has not done its job, given that unemployment has already passed the level the administration predicted it would be at without a stimulus bill.

    Now, some are already calling for a second stimulus package. The AP writes, “Economists and heavyweight Obama backers such as Warren Buffet already are calling for another stimulus, saying the recession proved to be deeper and more devastating than originally believed.” And of course the AFL-CIO’s policy director said, “We strongly believe we need another stimulus, and we need it now.” Stephanopoulos notes that Biden “didn’t rule out a second government stimulus package,” despite his reminder that much of the stimulus spending hasn’t yet taken affect.

    Obama, Biden, and Democrats in Congress may or may not have misread “how bad the economy was.” However, they did issue an incorrect prescription for turning around the economy by spending nearly $1 trillion which was added to the debt.

    Tags: economic stimulus, Joe Biden, unemployment, US Congress, US House, US Senate, vice president, Washington D.C. To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

    What's wrong with Obama's Independence Day Message?

    America's Best Choice - Originally posted on America, You Asked For It!
    by John M. Allison III: In his first Independence Day message to his supporters, the President demonstrated his fundamental misunderstanding of what is probably the most well known sentence of the Declaration of Independence. That's giving Obama the benefit of the doubt, because the alternative is he's intentionally misinterpreting the intent of the founders to manipulate the people and consolidate power.

    From the Declaration of Independence:
    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
    President Obama's interpretation seems to ignore that little word wedged between 'the' and 'of'--pursuit.

    Now, it's important to remember this document wasn't put together in a day. It wasn't something Jefferson put together in one sitting on a cafe napkin. Jefferson and the other founding fathers carefully chose their words to ensure their message to the King and the world was communicated effectively. The phrase "pursuit of happiness," survived the editing process and became permanently etched in the final document that initiated the formation of what would become the greatest nation on Earth.

    From the President's 4th of July message:
    Our country began as a unique experiment in liberty -- a bold, evolving quest to achieve a more perfect union. And in every generation, another courageous group of patriots has taken us one step closer to fully realizing the dream our founders enshrined on that great day.
    Read that paragraph carefully.

    The first sentence references the lead phrase in the US Constitution. Our founding fathers sought to form a more perfect union, but the current President seems to interpret this as the dream of the perfect union. Our wise founders, by inserting that little adverb "more" into this sentence, recognized that perfection is unachievable. Some may have believed such an achievement is unattainable due to the fallibility of man, others may have based their belief on the understanding that each man has a different definition of the "perfect" state. But one thing is clear--the editors of Jefferson's draft would have struck the word 'more' if they wished to communicate that they sought the perfect union.

    Our founding fathers made clear their belief that the guarantee of personal freedom was the most important role of government. These great patriots recognized that the freedom to excel must be complemented by the freedom to fail. Their acknowledgment that man has an inalienable right to pursue happiness rather than attain happiness seems incomprehensible to our current President. The President and his Democratic lackeys in Congress believe the founders had it all wrong. In their minds, your personal freedom creates inequities in society that can only be corrected by regulation and legislation.

    Where the founders believed in an individual's right to the fruits of his labors, Obama and his ilk would have you believe the role of government is to equalize the distribution of those fruits among the populace. In their world, the man who works overtime or even two jobs to afford a larger house, a newer car, better health insurance, or even to treat his family to a vacation once in a while should be brought down to the same economic status as the man who chooses to work part-time, or not at all, so that he can sit on the sofa and watch Oprah or Dr. Phil. Rather than allow each individual to strive for his definition of economic success, Obama and his Socialist pals want to define success and, through regulation and legislation, force all Americans to fit that mold.

    Another paragraph from the President's message:
    As free people, we must each take the challenges and opportunities that face this nation as our own. As long as some Americans still must struggle, none of us can be fully content. And as America comes ever closer to achieving the perfect Union our founders dreamed, that triumph -- that pride -- belongs to all of us.
    There it is again--the perfect union. This is repetitive I know, but it seems our President can't grasp such a simple concept so I'll go on.

    I don't know about you, but I'm not acquainted with anyone who hasn't struggled at some point in their lives. I'm sure they exist, but they're few and far between. Again, the founders' understanding that no such "perfect union" could exist is evidenced in the Constitution by the little adverb "more." They didn't dream of a perfect union in the Utopian sense, they dreamed of a "more perfect union"--meaning better than the one that existed at the time. To create a perfect union would require the existence of a perfect human being(s) and I believe the Bible when it says there is no such thing.

    The President has described the Constitution as a document of "negative liberties" and he's right, if you believe the Constitution was written to guarantee rights to our federal government. However, the fact is the Constitution wasn't written to secure the rights of government, but the rights of the governed. It follows then, what the President views as "negative liberties" granted the federal government become simply "liberties" enjoyed by citizens.

    Those liberties, especially the right to be as successful as one chooses, are precisely what allowed the United States to become the greatest nation--the most charitable, the most innovative, the most powerful--on Earth in less than 200 years. Remove those liberties, through taxation, legislation, or regulation, and we may well achieve economic equality for all. But at what price?

    The cost of such equalization will be borne by all Americans. Innovation will evaporate. When the prospect of reaping the financial rewards for building a better mousetrap is stripped from our society, we'll be stuck with the mousetraps of today. Our health care system may be expensive, but we're paying for the innovation that continually increases the lifespan of our citizens. The President and his cronies are currently hyping a government system that will eliminate the financial rewards for such innovation and result in the stagnation of medical discoveries, thereby stifling advances that would continue to increase longevity in the future.

    Obama's 4th of July message implies that his reforms will move us closer to a "perfect" union, one in which all our countrymen are guaranteed an equal share of the nation's economic pie. The end result of such ideology will be a reduction in the size of that pie so that all Americans will have a smaller portion, but they'll all be equal. This was not the founders' intent.

    The system envisioned in 1776 rewarded hard work and personal responsibility. The President and Democrats in Congress seek to reward the opposite by punishing those traits so valued by our founding fathers. It seems the founders, or at least Benjamin Franklin, knew this day would come.
    "When the people find they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic."--Benjamin Franklin

    Tags: 4th of July, Barack Hussein Obama, constitution, Independence Day, John Allison III, liberty To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

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