THE SAPIENT SPARROW: conservatism for commoners

"What has always made the State a hell on earth has been precisely that man has tried to make it his heaven."–Holderlin

FAVORITE QUOTES OF THE DAY AFTER LABOR DAY

After spending the past several weeks in “cancerland”, I was able to peruse various sites today to see what I’ve been missing.  My favorite quotes are below, along with links to the entire article in which each appeared.  Enjoy!

[T]hey’ve [Big Labor] instituted schemes where teachers receive raises for not dying over the summer.

Keynesian politicians don’t realize (or pretend not to realize) that economic growth occurs when there is an increase in national income. Redistribution plans, by contrast, simply change who is spending an existing amount of income.

If we are going to talk about “the policies that created this [economic] mess in the first place,” let’s at least get the facts straight and the names right.

Just as stunning as the tableaux of the massive throngs lining the reflecting pool [on 8/28] were the images of the spotless grounds afterward. If someone had told attendees they were expected to mow the grass before they left, surely some of them would have hitched flatbed trailers to their vehicles for the trip to Washington and gladly brought mowers along with them.

The only path back to robust growth and prosperity is to stop this [Obama’s] agenda dead in its tracks, and then by stages to reverse it. These are the economic stakes in November.

…the administration remains clueless, hinting that it may seek another “stimulus” costing billions. This bunch is either willfully doing damage to the U.S. economy, or completely incompetent.

[Allen] West: I would absolutely support repealing all of Obama-passed legislation.
For those interested, his website is http://www.allenwestforcongress.com.

If Keith Fimian wins the [Virginia] 11th, the GOP will far exceed their electoral success of 1994. You can follow the Fimian campaign itself at KeithFimian.com.

The Labor Day sprint to November has begun. The game is afoot.

(Note to Harry [Reid]: Repeating oneself is bad enough, repeating vague platitudes about “failed-policies-of-the-past-and-the-need-for-a-new-strategy”– like someone else we know — is downright pathetic.)

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Filed under: November 2010 midterm elections, , , , ,

MENENDEZ & PASCRELL: CLUELESS IN NEW JERSEY

With the mid-term elections less than 90 days away, I find myself fantasizing about what New Jersey might be like if she were represented in Washington by individuals who actually could read and do math.  By extension, what might the entire Country look like?  Alas, despite the election of Chris Christie to the position of Governor of the Garden State, I am resigned to the voters returning Representative Bill Pascrell,  8th District, to Washington this November. The 2012 re-election of Senator Bob Menendez is more doubtful, even if he dodges the recall action now in process.  However, having lived in New Jersey for the past 25 years, I have learned to never underestimate the hypnotic power of politicians who have  “Ds” after their names over the New Jersey electorate.

There was a time when I attempted to correspond with both Rep. Pascrell and Senator Menendez.  (To my credit, I had never tried to write or call Senator Lautenberg.)  I stopped these futile efforts over a year ago out of a desire to keep my sanity intact.  As a result they stopped sending me e-mails and newsletters and making “robo-calls” to my home.  A kind of peaceful co-existence reigned among us.  Last week that peace was broken.  My fault, I have to confess.  The potential of a “lame duck” Congressional session this fall was just too tempting.  I took aim and fired off letters in conjunction with a petition from Freedom Works on the issue.

Here is the letter that Freedom Works sent, with my comment appended at the end:

July 30, 2010

Dear Representative Pascrell,
Dear Senator Lautenberg,
Dear Senator Menendez,

Dear Member of Congress,

I continue to hear rumors about a potential “Lame Duck” session that could be held right after the November elections and before the new Congress is sworn-in.

I fear that despite a very different political make-up in Congress, elements of the far Left will view this as their last chance to enact threats to our liberty including:

1. The Cap and Trade Energy Tax Hike!
2. Another “Stimulus” Bailout Scheme!
3. More Tax Hikes at a Time when we can Scarcely Afford them!

This would go directly against the will of the people – having had their say in the November Elections – and I urge you to oppose it as the worst kind of political, dirty-trick.

Should a lame duck session surface, I will be watching your vote very closely on cap and trade, additional taxpayer-funded bailouts, any attempts to increase taxes, and any other policy proposals that erode more of our freedoms and expand the reach of government.

H/T to Rep. Tom Price for his Resolution addressing this issue. I strongly support his efforts.

Sincerely,

Okay, here is a little test.  What is the main idea of the above letter?  Anyone?  Anyone?  Below is the answer of Senator Menedez:

Dear Mrs. Hurley:

Thank you for contacting me to express your concerns about legislation addressing climate change.  Your opinion is very important to me, and I appreciate the opportunity to respond to you on this critical issue.

I understand your concerns about the potential economic impact of this legislation.  Like you, I believe it is vital that we carefully consider and prepare for how a program to reduce global warming pollution will affect the daily lives of those at every income level. Before supporting any energy legislation, I will be looking for significant investments in consumer rebates and energy efficiency to protect consumers and businesses from energy price increases.

However, when thinking about our energy and global warming policies, I think it is critical that we stop and recognize the fundamental choice we are facing.  We can either act now and gradually lower our emissions, or we can delay action and make the inevitable switch to cleaner fuels suddenly and in an economically disruptive manner.

Embarking on a new energy path now would mean rebuilding our manufacturing base by creating jobs in clean energy technology right here at home, reducing our dangerous dependence on foreign energy, and cutting global warming pollution.  As your Senator, I believe moving forward on energy independence and clean energy is the only sensible path for New Jersey and for America.  I have complete confidence that if we in Congress can take on our toughest energy and climate challenges, then our entrepreneurs, engineers, and workers  can make America the leader in clean energy technology that will power the 21st century economy.

On this issue, as with any issue, there are many different views.  Again, thank you for sharing your thoughts with me.  Please do not hesitate to contact me if I can be of further assistance.  I invite you to visit my website (http://menendez.senate.gov) to learn more about how I am standing up for New Jersey families in the United States Senate.

Sincerely,

His response begs the question, “Is a real person actually reading his correspondence, or does his office use computer software that uses predictive logic to generate (mis)responses?”  It is good to know, I guess, that Senator Menendez is consistently “mis-responsive”.  The letter I had sent previous to the one last week concerned Obamacare legislation.  Senator Menendez replied by telling me that he did not support funding for the closure of the Guantanamo Bay detention center.  Remember, that a majority of New Jersey voters elected this guy—crazy-making, isn’t it?

Shortly after the exchange with Senator Menendez, I received a call from Representative Pascrell inviting me to join a “Telephone Townhall” meeting with him.  With some difficulty, I was able to resist his invitation.  However, the next day, I received from Representative Bill, a copy of his newsletter—the first one he has sent me in two years.  I tried not to read it; I really did.  But this latest newsletter looked so appealing.  Glossy paper, full color, so unlike the black and blue newsletter that he had previously sent.  So, I read it.

Representative Bill began with a warm, personal letter (my comments in italics):

Dear Friends and Neighbors:

For the past 13 years, I have had the honor of serving the residents of the 8th Congressional District.  As your representative in Congress, it is my priority to make sure you stay informed about the actions of your government in Washington.  (Notice his priority to inform us of Government actions instead of requesting that his constituents inform him about what actions to take.)

In this Congress, we are working hard to turn around the economy, and the results are starting to show.  After 22 straight months of job loss, we have now seen our economy create private-sector jobs for 6 months in a row.  (Omitted in this statement are any statistics that describe the impact these private-sector jobs have had on unemployment, almost nil, and how many more jobs that the private-sector would need to create in order to appreciably reduce unemployment.)
Not only has the Recovery Act helped stem the tide of the recession, but it has included the largest tax cut for any two-year period in the nation’s history allowing over 3.2 million N. J. families to receive tax cuts. (Emphasis is in original text.  More about the alleged tax cuts can be found below.)

We can see the impact of the Recovery Act right here in the 8th District, with the bridge improvements on I-280, the resurfacing of Interstate 80, (Okay, aside from the wasteful expenditure for the “Recovery Act” PR signs, I can support these.) and a Head Start program in Montclair.  (Ummm, Rep. Bill just lost me again.)
With the help of the Recovery Act grants, we are taking America in a new direction—creating good American jobs, providing the lowest taxes in 60 years for the middle class, and helping small business competitively expand.  (Wow, who knew?!?) Times are still hard for families in the 8th District, and I will continue working to get our economy back on track.  (Oh, no, Rep. Bill, please don’t, you’ve done enough already, really you have.)

As Americans we are all affected by these issues and now is the time to voice our thoughts towards finding common solutions.  (Really?  We can “voice our thoughts”.  Is this to be done before or after you inform us “about the actions of our government in Washington”?)

Warm Regards,

Inside his glossy newsletter, Representative Pascrell informs us that he is “delivering tax cuts to working class families and over $311 million to the 8th District from the Recovery Act to create jobs and build the foundation for our future.”  He then specifically accounts for only ~$107.6 million of the money that the 8th District received from the Recovery Act.  (Approximately 34.6%).  It has been spent on such things as education, energy efficiency and green jobs, water quality, sewage efficiency, road and bridge projects.  Approximately 7% of the $311 million went to educational-related items.  (Read: NJEA)  By contrast, Law Enforcement received .08%, yes you read that correctly, 8/100ths of one percent of Recovery Act funds.  Over 21% of the Recovery Act funds went to environmental and green energy-related projects.  About 6% of the $311 million was spent on road and bridge projects.  So where did the other 65.4% of the money go?

Reading on, it becomes clear that a large, undisclosed, portion of the $311 million was spent on “health care”, i.e., support for Medicaid, medical technology and senior nutritional programs.  Whatever remained of the $311 was spent on that “largest tax cut for any two-year period in the nation’s history” that allowed “over 3.2 million N. J. families to receive tax cuts.”  Following is the list of “tax cuts” bestowed on “over 3.2 million N. J. families”:
 Expansion of the child tax credit
 Expansion of the college credit
 The Homebuyer credit
 The Small Business tax credit of renewable energy production
 The Small Business tax credit that allows an immediate tax credit to be claimed for capital equipment purchases
Reduction in withholding
 One-time $250 payment to seniors, veterans and the disabled in the 8th Congressional District.

There is one, teensy-weensy problem with the above list, aside from the reduction in withholding, (which has negligible or even negative consequences), none of these items are “tax cuts”.  They are “tax credits”.  The Heritage Foundation explains the difference between these two.  In short, “tax cuts” allow taxpayers to keep more of the money they earn over a period of time.  “Tax credits” are temporary, perhaps even one-time, benefits given to specific individuals that meet particular requirements.  I suppose that Rep. Bill can be forgiven for not knowing the difference; nearly all the Democrats confuse these two terms and seem to use them interchangeably.

Near the end of his newsletter, Representative Pascrell invites the reader to check out the funding amounts at the “Recovery.gov” site.  Being a glutton for punishment, I did.  Clicking on the state of New Jersey on the map gave me the following information:
 Total awarded (to the State of New Jersey)     $5,122,510,000
 Total received (through 6/20/10)                         $2,442,720,000
 Recipient Reported Jobs (between
April 1-June 30, 2010                                                                22,885

At this point I intend to re-instate my “no contact” rule with Senator Menendez and Representative Pascrell.  I much prefer writing to those who are not clueless.  And, if it looks as if I’m weakening, will someone please force me to re-read this post and then remind me of von Hayek’s words:
“We shall not grow wiser before we learn that much that we have done was very foolish.”

Filed under: NJ Federal Representatives, , , , , ,

THE DNC & THEIR “CONTRACT ON AMERICA”

photo by Christian Science Monitor, 2010

DNC Chairman Tim Kaine unveiled an anti (?)-Republican advertisement campaign that seeks to tie Republicans to the Tea Party.  The advertisement, ostensibly, seeks to turn the American people away from Republicans (and toward Democrats?), because of their close ties with Tea Party ideas.   The ad lists the ten planks of the Tea Party “Contract From America” and then states that these are virtually identical to what Republicans want to do.  Hmmm—has it been lost on them that a majority of Americans are sympathetic to the Tea Party, if not outright members?  As I looked over what the DNC is calling “Contract On America”, I could only pray that the Republican Party is actually embracing these goals.  I think they are winning ones.

One caveat as you read the DNC “Contract” below—the annotation that follows each item is wildly inaccurate and madly spun from a Lefist point of view.  For example, the outcomes that the DNC states from repealing Obamacare, privatizing Social Security or phasing out Medicare are overstated at best.  Visit Representative Paul Ryan’s “Roadmap” site for the true plan that the conservative Congressional Republicans are developing.

Oh, and by the way, in case you are concerned about #10, consider this:

Repealing the 17th Amendment would mean that another amendment would need to be passed in order to “undo” it.  The Constitution spells out four paths for an amendment:
* Proposal by convention of states, ratification by state conventions (never used)
* Proposal by convention of states, ratification by state legislatures (never used)
* Proposal by Congress, ratification by state conventions (used once)
* Proposal by Congress, ratification by state legislatures (used all other times)
When an amendment is proposed in Congress, 2/3 majority in each house of Congress must pass it before the amendment is sent on to the States.  Then ¾ of the States (or their legislatures) need to approve it,  no matter where the amendment originated.  Not an easy process.  Huge majorities would need to agree in order for this to happen.  Like it or not, I think we are stuck with popular election of Senators.

Read the DNC advertisement below.  What do you think?  I think that the DNC advertisement has a lot for Republicans to like.  With enemies like the DNC, who needs friends?

THE CONTRACT ON AMERICA
1. Repeal the Affordable Care Act (Health Insurance Reform)

Put insurance companies back in charge, repeal tax credits for small businesses, allow insurance companies to deny coverage based on preexisting conditions and to drop coverage when a person gets too sick and make prescription drugs for seniors less affordable.

2. Privatize Social Security or phase it out altogether

Turn the guaranteed retirement benefits of America’s seniors over to Wall Street CEOs by putting Social Security at risk in the stock market or, as some Republicans have called for, phase out Social Security altogether and end a program millions of American seniors rely on for their survival.

3. End Medicare as it presently exists

Phase out and end Medicare as it presently exists for future generations of seniors — ending Medicare’s guaranteed healthcare benefits for more than 40 million American seniors — and replace it with a voucher system which will result in higher premiums and fewer services for seniors.

4. Extend the Bush tax breaks for the wealthy and big oil

At a cost of nearly $700 billion, extend the Bush tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans and big oil, which are set to expire and which have and will continue to explode the federal budget deficit.

5. Repeal Wall Street Reform

Roll back the toughest consumer protections ever enacted, allow banks to continue to grow too big to fail, and ensure that predatory lenders continue to utilize their most abusive practices.

6. Protect those responsible for the oil spill and future environmental catastrophes

Cap liabilities for those responsible for environmental disasters like the Gulf oil spill and let companies like BP decide which victims deserve compensation for the disaster and what the timeline for relief should be.

7. Abolish the Department of Education

Put the big banks back in charge of student loans and put an end to federal assistance for public schools.

8. Abolish the Department of Energy

End America’s investments in a clean-energy future and disband the organization responsible for oversight of nuclear materials.

9. Abolish the Environmental Protection Agency

Gut the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act — which together protect our kids from air pollution and keep drinking water safe — and disband the watchdog that holds polluters accountable.

10. Repeal the 17th Amendment

Take away your right to pick your U.S. Senator.

Filed under: big government, , , , , , , ,

STOP! WAIT! COME BACK!

“The truth is, it took nearly a decade of failed economic policies to create this mess, and it will take years to fully repair the damage. But I am confident that we are finally headed in the right direction. We are moving forward. ; And what we can’t afford right now is to go back to the same ideas that created this mess in the first place.”—President Barak Obama, July 23, 2010 in weekly address

In a four page article in National Review Online, William Voegeli systematically argues that Liberalism is dangerous.

If politics is defined as “the way power is organized”, American power was conceived to be essentially organized by individual citizens in a free market who then delegated a portion of that power to duly elected representatives.  Voegeli makes the point that power thus organized is responsive to the electorate, because their positions depend on the support of the electorate.

As the result of Liberalism, we now have a system in which Congressional power is largely (mis)placed in a myriad of Government Agencies: SSA, EPA, US Department of Ed., etc., etc. who can regulate extra-legally.  These unelected bureaucrats are not responsive to citizens, because citizens have no power to fire them.  Thus, the individual is diminished and devalued by huge, faceless Government machinery.

America originated with the idea of an individual with natural, God-given, inalienable rights. This idea preceded laws, regulations and policies.  The rights of an individual citizen of the United States were not changeable, could not be abolished, nor could they be bestowed.  Humans possessed these rights by virtue of being created in the image of God.

Today housing, jobs, health care, transportation, food, childcare are identified as “rights”.  They are not. Furthermore, when we treat them as such, we are treading into an extra-Constitutional boggy swamp.  “Rights” that are invented and then distributed “fairly” after taking money from other citizens to pay for them are simply favors give to specific groups at the expense of individual citizens.

These Leftist ideas should alert us that our Country is traveling into an uninhabitable landscape.  Indeed Voegeli concludes his article with a plea to “turn around and go back”—wise words to cling to during this “Summer of Recovery” when we continue to hear that we cannot “go back”.

Voegeli’s summary is below.  Take the time to read his entire article.  It is well worth it.

“C. S. Lewis wrote that since progress means getting closer to your goal, when you’ve taken a wrong turn and are getting farther and farther from your destination, the truly “progressive” response is to turn around and go back to the right road. Most conservatives believe that America took a wrong turn in 1932, one that has led us farther away from the goal of preserving and strengthening republican self-government. Self-styled progressives talked us into that navigational error, and in the subsequent 78 years their liberal disciples have continued on the wrong road, superintending a rolling regime change that has steadily hollowed out our constitutional republic and replaced it with an administrative state, one increasingly indifferent to ordinary citizens’ concerns and insulated from their opposition.

The conservatives now reviving constitutionalism are rightly insistent on the need to retrace our steps, and to undo the mistakes that have supplanted limited with unlimited government. The point is not to go back to 1932 and stay there, compiling a list of things government cannot do and problems it cannot address. The point, rather, is to resume progress on the road not taken: toward a government that is both limited and vigorous, scrupulous about upholding the principles of republicanism but energetic and prudent about working within the framework created by those principles to respond to economic and social changes with policies that advance the people’s prosperity and security.”

— William Voegeli is a contributing editor of The Claremont Review of Books and a visiting scholar at Claremont McKenna College’s Salvatori Center.

Filed under: big government, , , , , ,

UPDATE-U.S. (SLAUGHTER) HOUSE

Yesterday afternoon, Roll Call reported that the Senate Parliamentarian had verbally ruled that the Senate process of reconciliation could not proceed until such time as the House passed the Senate Obamacare Bill “as is”, and the President signs it into law.  Although the ruling has not yet become “official”, and there is always a chance that V.P. Biden, as President of the Senate, could overrule the Parliamentarian, it seems as if the fate of Obamacare is once again squarely on the shoulders of the House.  The piece is reprinted below:

Ruling Kills an Option for Moving Health Bill
March 11, 2010, 2:30 P.M.
By David M. Drucker
Roll Call Staff

The Senate Parliamentarian has ruled that President Barack Obama must sign Congress’ original health care reform bill before the Senate can act on a companion reconciliation package, senior GOP sources said Thursday.

The Senate Parliamentarian’s Office was responding to questions posed by the Republican leadership. The answers were provided verbally, sources said.

House Democratic leaders have been searching for a way to ensure that any move they make to approve the Senate-passed $871 billion health care reform bill is followed by Senate action on a reconciliation package of adjustments to the original bill. One idea is to have the House and Senate act on reconciliation prior to House action on the Senate’s original health care bill.

Information Republicans say they have received from the Senate Parliamentarian’s Office eliminates that option. House Democratic leaders last week began looking at crafting a legislative rule that would allow the House to approve the Senate health care bill, but not forward it to Obama for his signature until the Senate clears the reconciliation package.

Meanwhile, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) moved Thursday to put Senate Republicans on the defensive over health care, sending a letter to Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) in which he dared the GOP to vote against reform.

Reid also defended the Democrats’ use of reconciliation to get a final health care reform bill to the president’s desk, noting that the bulk of health care reform was approved under regular order via the package that cleared the Senate on Christmas Eve. Reid also emphasized that Republicans have used the procedure several times over the years.

However, Reid also promised in the letter that Republicans would have ample opportunity to amend the reconciliation package.

“Reconciliation is designed to deal with budget-related matters, and some have expressed doubt that it could be used for comprehensive health care reform that includes many policies with no budget implications. But the reconciliation bill now under consideration would not be the vehicle for comprehensive reform — that bill already passed outside of reconciliation with 60 votes,” Reid wrote to McConnell.

“Reconciliation will not exclude Republicans from the legislative process. You will continue to have an opportunity to offer amendments and change the shape of the legislation. In addition, at the end of the process, the bill can pass only if it wins a democratic, up-or-down majority vote. If Republicans want to vote against a bill that reduces health care costs, fills the prescription drug ‘donut hole’ for seniors and reduces the deficit, you will have every right to do so,” he said.

From the commentary last evening, it also appears that the “Slaughter Solution” would not meet the standard of “passing the Senate Bill”, i.e., a rule that “deems” it passed is not the same thing as actually passing the Bill.  The “Slaughter Solution” was being devised to give cover to those Democrats, such as the “Stupakers”, and make it easier to vote for the Bill by technically voting for the “rule”.  Now, this tactic seems to be moot.

However, it was reported this morning that Mr. Obama has postponed his Asia trip to stay in Washington D. C. and “work on” (read strong-arm/coerce) passage of “Healthcare Reform”.  He now plans to start his trip on March 21st, instead of March 18th.  It is not immediately clear to me what he thinks he can do in an extra two days in the Capitol, but I’m sure he will come up with something that is sure to be thuggishly sleazy.

Filed under: U.S. GOVERNMENT, , , , ,

U.S. (SLAUGHTER) HOUSE

Well, what will they think of next?  I am utterly amazed, though perhaps I shouldn’t be, at the lengths that Pelosi, et. al. will go to in order to force the passage of the immensely unpopular Obamacare bill.  The most recent shameless tactic is being designed by Rep. Louise Slaughter, hence its name the “Slaughter Solution”.  If used, it will definitely live up to its name!

Mary Katharine Ham at the Weekly Standard sums up the measure below:

Symbolism: Dems Mull Ramming of Health-Care With ‘Slaughter Solution’
3:21 PM, Mar 10, 2010 ·
BY Mary Katharine Ham


Congress Daily reports today that the Senate may try to find a way to pass the Senate bill without a final House vote. Sounds improbable, but Rube Goldberg would be proud.

I present to you the Slaughter Solution, devised by Rep. Louise Slaughter. (What Sen. Death Panel was not available to put his name to it?). Via Congress Daily ($):

House Rules Chairwoman Louise Slaughter is prepping to help usher the healthcare overhaul through the House and potentially avoid a direct vote on the Senate overhaul bill, the chairwoman said Tuesday.

Slaughter is weighing preparing a rule that would consider the Senate bill passed once the House approves a corrections bill that would make changes to the Senate version.

Slaughter has not taken the plan to Speaker Pelosi as Democrats await CBO scores on the corrections bill. “Once the CBO gives us the score we’ll spring right on it,” she said.

NRO: “Crucially, it gives the lie — in a big, big way — to the Democratic narrative that health-care reform should and will be finished via simple “majority rule,” and not bound up in the arcane rules of the United States Senate.”

From the GOP Leader blog: “You see, Democratic leaders currently lack the votes needed to pass the Senate health care bill through the House.  Under Slaughter’s scheme, Democratic leaders will overcome this problem by simply ‘deeming’ the Senate bill passed in the House – without an actual vote by members of the House.”

The blogosphere has been replete with analysis of using this twisted tactic.  At the Foundry Blog there is a very good description of the strategy, the implementation process and its Constitutional problems.  An excerpt follows:

Procedurally, this would happen in the following order.  The House Rules Committee would approve this self-executing rule.  The House would vote on the rule that allows this scenario.  Then the House will vote on the reconciliation measure.  Upon passage of the reconciliation measure the Senate Obamacare bill will be deemed to have passed the House and the reconciliation measure will be sent to the Senate.  This so called “Deeming Resolution” is a trick that allows the House to pass a bill they never voted upon.  Therefore, the real vote on the pro-abortion Senate passed bill will be the vote on the rule to allow this scenario to roll out on the House floor.

One provision that may make the rule is a provision that does not allow the House to report the Senate passed Obamacare bill to the President until the Senate passes a reconciliation bill.  Bills are enrolled before being sent to the President for his signature and the House can prevent the enrollment and delivery of Obamacare to the President until the Senate completes work on the reconciliation measure.  Sound complicated?  Yes and it is supposed to so the American people can’t understand that the House is on the verge of passing an unpopular Obamacare bill, yet they are reserving the right to claim that they did not vote for the Senate passed bill.

For a more complete understanding of the “Slaughter Solution” and its consequences for passage of Obamacare, take time to read the entries from the New York Post, Red State, American Thinker and Big Government.

This is Chicago slaughter house politics at its best, or worst depending on how one looks at it.  “If they bring a knife to the the fight, we bring a gun”, our Dear Leader has said.  The “Slaughter Solution” is not a gun, it is a nuclear bomb.


Filed under: U.S. GOVERNMENT, , , , , , ,

MASSA V. BECK: “A WASTE OF TIME”

AFP/Getty Images/File – US Representative Eric Massa, pictured in 2009, resigned suddenly this week facing harassment allegations …

In the interest of “closure”, here is an excerpt of an article by Michael Scherer.  The excerpt, I think, sums up the appearance of Massa on Glenn Beck’s show last afternoon.  Time to move on, nothing to see here, and we have bigger fish to fry.

… in Massa, Beck found a sort of liberal doppelganger, a mesmerizing train wreck of a man who was impossible to undercut in the classic fashion. To many conservative allies of Beck, it probably didn’t come as too much of a surprise. In recent days, prominent Republicans like Bill Kristol had expressly warned Beck and others about coming to Massa’s defense just because he was alleging dirty tricks by the Obama White House. “We shouldn’t get into the business of being pro-Massa just because we are anti-healthcare,” Kristol said Monday on Fox. The ruling talk-radio king, Rush Limbaugh, spent much of Tuesday making clear that he would not be tied to Massa, after spending much of Monday praising Massa’s revelations about Democratic Party politics. “Anybody who embraces this guy is in big trouble,” Limbaugh said.

Beck would not budge. But as those 60 minutes came to an end Tuesday afternoon, [Beck] seemed to recognize that he had fallen into a trap. “I think I have wasted your time,” Beck said.

Filed under: U.S. GOVERNMENT, , , ,

GREAT BREAKING NEWS: Massa Fights Back: Implicates Obama/Rahm Emmanuel in bribery scandal, may rescind resignation

This item just came through one of my 9.12 listmates.  If it proves true, it gives further insight into the strong-arm tactics and corruption of the present administration-a microcosm of the way the entire country is being treated by Mr. Obama and his cronies.

Massa Hints He Could Rescind Resignation
March 8, 2010, 7:14 A.M.
By Jennifer Yachnin
Roll Call Staff

Rep. Eric Massa (D-N.Y.) suggested on a New York radio station Sunday that he could rescind his resignation — scheduled to take effect at 5 p.m. Monday — after asserting that an ethics investigation into allegations that he sexually harassed one of his aides may have been orchestrated by Democratic leaders to get him out of office before the health care vote.

Responding to a caller to his weekly radio show on WKPQ Power 105 FM, a recording of which was made available via the Web site of local station 13 WHAM-TV, Massa said: “I’m not going to be a Congressman as of 5 o’clock [Monday] afternoon. The only way to stop that is for me to rescind my resignation. That’s the only way to stop it. And the only way that’s going to happen is if this becomes a national story.”

During the hour-and-a-half show, Massa said that Democratic leaders are using the House ethics committee to get him out of office before the vote on health care because he voted against the House health care bill last fall.

“Mine is now the deciding vote on the health care bill, and this administration and this House leadership have said, ‘they will stop at nothing to pass this health care bill, and now they’ve gotten rid of me and it will pass.’ You connect the dots,” Massa said Several times during the broadcast Massa raised the prospect of rescinding his resignation if national news media picked up on his story of being railroaded out of office by Democratic leaders.

In response to a caller’s suggestion that Massa disseminate his allegations by contacting Fox News, Massa stated: “I can’t call Fox News. You guys gotta call Fox News. I can’t do it. … Here’s why. I’m in the center of this storm, so obviously I’m not objective.”

But Massa also repeatedly pointed out that the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, commonly referred to as the ethics panel, would continue its investigation if he remains in office.

“That’s very kind of you, but understand what that means for me,” Massa said in a response to a caller who suggested he not resign. “It means that a group of lawyers are going to try to rip me and my family limb from limb. And you’ve already seen it in the newspapers. … It’s a piranha feeding frenzy.”

Massa said on the show that the ethics investigation focused on sexually charged comments he made to an aide at a New Year’s Eve celebration, but charged he was unaware of an ethics committee investigation into the incident until after he had announced his retirement last week.

The House ethics committee confirmed Thursday that it is investigating unspecified allegations against Massa.

Massa surprised political observers when he announced on Wednesday that he would not run for re-election in November. He cited a recurrence of cancer as the reason for his decision, but after the ethics investigation was confirmed, Massa announced he would step down immediately.

Here’s the next story:

March 8, 2010 9:06 AM
By Reid Wilson

Embattled Rep. Eric Massa (D-NY) lashed out in an emotional radio appearance Sunday, accusing Dem leaders of what he suggested was an orchestrated campaign to force his resignation.

“There’s a reason that this has all happened, frankly one that I had not realized,” Massa said on WKPQ radio on Sunday. “Mine is now the deciding vote on the health care bill, and this administration and this House leadership have said, quote unquote, they will stop at nothing to pass this health care bill. And now they’ve gotten rid of me and it’ll pass.”

Massa addressed rumors circulating on blogs about his personal behavior, including incidents during an informal Navy ceremony in ’83 on the USS New Jersey and one that occurred in a state room later during his Navy career. He insisted he had done nothing uncommon, insisting his sin was foul language.

A complaint before the House ethics committee, he said, stemmed from a wedding Massa attended over New Years, when he made an inappropriate comment to an aide, according toRoll Call, which first reported the radio program.

Massa maintained his comments were inappropriate, but he blamed “political correctness” and accused Dems of a setup. Massa voted against health care legislation in Nov., and he has not been a reliable vote for Dem leadership. That, he said, has put a target on his back.

“When I voted against the cap and trade bill, the phone rang and it was the chief of staff to the president of the United States of America, Rahm Emanuel, and he started swearing at me in terms and words that I hadn’t heard since that crossing the line ceremony on the USS New Jersey in 1983,” Massa said. “And I gave it right back to him, in terms and words that I know are physically impossible.”

“If Rahm Emanuel wants to come after me, maybe he ought to hold himself to the same standards I’m holding myself to and he should resign,” Massa said.

Massa slammed House Maj. Leader Steny Hoyer for discussing a House ethics committee inquiry, accusing Hoyer of lying in an effort to eliminate an opponent of health care. Hoyer said last week he heard in early Feb. about allegations against Massa, and that he told Massa’s office to report the allegations to the ethics committee.

“Steny Hoyer has never said a single word to me at all, never, not once,” Massa said. “Never before in the history of the House of Representatives has a sitting leader of the Democratic Party discussed allegations of House investigations publicly, before findings of fact. Ever.”

“I was set up for this from the very, very beginning,” he added. “The leadership of the Democratic Party have become exactly what they said they were running against.”

Massa bemoaned the state of the nation’s politics, which he said is perpetuated by the constant need for money to run for re-election. And, he said, he has been made an example by Dem leadership.

“There is not a single member of the Democratic freshman class whi is going to vote against this health care bill now that they’ve got me,” he said. “Eric Massa’s probably not going to go back to Congress, because the only way I would go back there would be as an independent. A pox on both parties.”

Massa has held the radio program, in which he took calls from constituents, during his 14 months in office. He said yesterday’s episode would be his last as an incumbent.

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STATE OF DIS-UNION: THE PROPER RESPONSE TO THE STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS?

AP Photo

This will be short and sweet-MUCH shorter and sweeter than the State of the Union address last night!

My predictions proved to be very accurate.  Although next time I really ought to set a point total goal, so that there is actually a way to prove that I won the “Obama Speech Game”.

Allow me to digress for a moment and tell you that I used to work in the field of Domestic Violence as a counselor in a shelter for battered women.  The men in the lives of these women all had some behavioral traits in common.

1) They all blamed other situations, people etc. for their mistakes and shortcomings.
2) They all promised, over and over again, to do things that they never actually did, nor ever intended to do.
3) They all gave sweet little gifts along with sweet little words and then returned to their former behavior.
4) They all revised history, twisted facts and lied to make themselves look good, which made everyone else feel rather crazy.
5) They all needed to be right and wanted their own way in all things.
6) None would entertain any sort of disagreement with their viewpoints.  In the case that disagreement was expressed, there was swift and brutal retribution.

The object of an abuser, either consciously or unconsciously, is to create an atmosphere of dependency, debility and dread to bind his victim to him.

Obviously, I am not saying that the POTUS is a physically violent man.  However, abuse comes in many different degrees and types—and it never ends well.  Solution?  It is always the same.  If you don’t want to be hurt, stay as far away from him as you possibly can.  Perhaps that would work well in this instance as well.

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THINKING ABOUT THE STATE OF THE UNION

The State of the Union address will be given on Wednesday, January 27, 2010.  I really am not looking forward to it.  Sitting through yet another speech by Mr. Obama takes not only self-discipline, but also intestinal fortitude.  After all, I am fairly certain about what the POTUS will say.  So, to make this event a bit more palatable, I have been listing those catchy phrases that I think we are bound to hear, as well as the topics he is sure to cover.  I plan to listen to the State of the Union address with my list, ready to check it against the actual speech.  It will be fun to see how well I can predict what Mr. Obama says.  Here are some of the things I believe we will hear:

1) Bush bashing: failed policies of the past, we inherited, etc., etc.

2)Let me be clear (followed by a vague statement, or a complete falsehood).

3)This will not be easy, or this will be hard, or this will take time, or it took a long time and change will not happen overnight.

4)Fighting for you, i.e., little guy, middle class, working people, etc.

5)Fighting against special interests, Wall Street, banks, rich people, etc.

6)Green jobs.

7)Energy independence.

8)Living our values has made us safer in the “Homeland”.

9)It would have been worse had we done nothing.

10)So that this will never happen again.

11)Explaining the focus of popular anger and frustration.

12)Explaining what the “people” want.

Gee, watching the State of the Union address may not be so bad after all.  (I am really looking forward to the White House spin on items #11 and #12).

The Republican response to the State of the Union address will be as important, if not more important.  It could set the tone for the time leading up to the November 2010 elections.  A response that conveys a strong, positive, pro-growth message, not unlike Scott Brown used in his successful Senate campaign, would be welcome.  Not so long ago, even John McCain, (during the 2008 Presidential campaign), stated that we needed to “grow the economy” out of the economic downturn.  Perhaps this would be a good occasion to reiterate that to the American people.

During the Saturday, January 23rd, broadcast of “The Larry Kudlow Show, Jerry Boyer stated that Republicans “need to fight with both a sword and a shield”.  I agree.  It is not enough to play defense by simply critiquing Democrat policies.  Most Americans are so steeped in the Keynsian view that increased Government, increased spending, increased regulations and decreased risk in the business sector is the answer to economic woes that they do not properly understand that history disproves the success of such policies.  Republicans need to educate Americans in the successful strategies of lower taxes, less regulation, freer trade and smaller more local government in wealth creation in a free market.  Even President JFK knew that “a rising tide lifts all boats”.  It would be delicious for the Republicans to quote this well-beloved Democrat to the Democrats.  It seemed to work for Scott Brown.

Maybe the Republican response could also include the wonderful graph that Larry Kudlow has on his NRO blog, “Kudlow’s Money Politic$”, reproduced below along with his words:

Take a look at the following chart. It looks more complicated than it really is. What it shows is job losses during all the post-WWII recessions, two years after the jobs peak.”

You’ll see that all the post-war cycles had employment rising by now. But, as this chart clearly shows, it’s still falling. That’s the issue for America right now.

Will someone please explain to me how raising taxes on banks — or anybody else for that matter: rich people, capital gains, whatever — will make the jobs line go up instead of down? Someone please explain to me how we’re going to tax our way out of this jobs decline?

Bank taxes? What a terrible idea. Raising personal income taxes, health-care related taxes, capital-gains taxes? All terrible ideas. It’s totally nuts. These tax hikes are not going to create jobs here in America, they will take jobs away.

Mr. Kudlow is absolutely right, and the Republicans need to shout that from the rooftops.  On Wednesday, I  am fairly sure what we will hear from the POTUS.  I am less sure about how the Republicans will respond.  I hope that the Republicans will recognize, as did Edmund Burke that, “There is, however, a limit at which forbearance ceases to be a virtue.”  Now is the time for Republicans to step outside their comfort zone, to take up the sword and to lead an attack against the destructive plans of the Left.  The time for forbearance is long past.

The Republicans would do well to be informed by other words of Edmund Burke, “When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle.”  Be assured, the Republicans must continue to stand together, or they too will fall.  With one voice, they need to loudly offer conservative solutions, explain in simple terms how these solutions will work and pledge their unwavering support to implementing these.  To be sure, this struggle can be won, but only if those with superior ideas act in concert with strength and certainty.

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"His eye is on the sparrow, and He surely watches me." --Mrs. Doolittle, 1905

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