The Boy King’s Epic Failure

Over at Commentary Contentions, Jonathon Tobin sums up the status of the Obama presidency thusly:

Obama came into office thinking all of the country’s problems, both domestic and foreign, were the fault of his predecessor, a myth he still clings to. Having been handed the reins of power along with comfortable Democratic majorities in both houses of Congress, he had two years to do as he pleased. That’s exactly what he did as he rammed through a trillion dollar stimulus and a health care bill that vastly expanded federal entitlement spending. These measures were unpopular and cost him his majority in the House of Representatives. But worse than that, they were a failure, and burdened by his ideology-based inability to embrace policies that will promote growth, he has led the country to ruin.

If Obama appears clueless today it is because he has already played every card in his hand during the first half of his one term. All that is left to him now is the last resort of every political failure: to blackguard his opponents and hope that demonizing them, as he hopes to do with the populist Tea Party movement, or to incite prejudice against them, as he plans to do with Mitt Romney should he be the GOP nominee, will ensure his re-election. The trouble with this strategy is it is an attempt to divert the public’s attention from the one thing they can never be distracted from: an economic collapse he has helped bring about.

Emphasis added.  America hates a loser, and it hates a whiner.  Obama is increasingly perceived on all fronts as both.  As Glenn Reynolds often says, at this point, Carter part II is looking like a best case scenario.

Published in: on August 10, 2011 at 10:24 am  Leave a Comment  

The Daily Kos Is Delusional

I know, no big surprise there.  But this is exceptional:

Beyond Wisconsin, if we can enjoy a similar “loss rate” in Republican-held districts (picking up 33 percent of them), Speaker Nancy Pelosi will have a huge majority in 2013. We had a message that resonated with large numbers of working people in overwhelmingly white working-class districts that shifted hard against Democrats in 2010. GOP overreach is winning them back for us. Just think, before today, only 13 state legislators had been recalled in the entire history of this nation.

So yeah, I feel strangely energized and elated.

Must be the medical marijuana.

Here’s an alternative view — the unions shoveled money by the truckload into an election and lost 4 out of 6.  In addition, 1 of their 2 wins involved Randy Hopper, who was last seen shacked up with his 25 year-old mistress.  When that’s the best you can do despite an all-out effort, you might want to reconsider the popularity of your views.  Just a thought.

Stay tuned, since the recall vote for the Dems who fled the state to avoid doing their jobs comes next.

Published in: on August 10, 2011 at 10:11 am  Leave a Comment  

Who Are The Real Economic “Terrorists”?

Just a few days ago, columnist Froma Harrop was busy attacking Tea party activists and House Republicans associated with them in, shall we say, rather harsh terms:

The tea party Republicans have engaged in economic terrorism against the United States–threatening to blow up the economy if they don’t get what they want. And like the al-Qaida bombers, what they want is delusional: the dream of restoring some fantasy caliphate. . . .  That the Republican leadership couldn’t control a small group of ignoramuses in its ranks has brought disgrace on their party.

Today, Ms. Harrop laments the bankruptcy of a small town back East:

CENTRAL FALLS, R.I. — The stock market plunged over 500 points last Thursday, but no one seemed very perturbed about it in this tiny factory town. Three days before, Central Falls had filed for a Chapter 9 bankruptcy. These working-class folk see bottoms fall out on a regular basis.

* * *

If any U.S. city was destined to go bankrupt, it was this one — though Vallejo, Calif., beat it by three years. Like Vallejo, ruinous public-employee contracts sent Central Falls over the edge. Unlike the San Francisco suburb, Central Falls has a smaller, less economically diverse tax base. (The median household income is under $33,520 a year.) Its local government at the time of the bankruptcy filing was far more corrupt than Vallejo’s.

On this thin tax base, Central Falls faced an annual deficit of $5 million and unfunded pension obligations of $80 million. For a long time, its police and firefighters could retire on full pensions after only 20 years of service. So even though their monthly payouts were not princely, workers could start collecting them — and free health coverage for life — while in their 40s. Bankruptcy lets a city tear up union contracts and start over.

* * *

Being able to erase foolish spending decisions made in more prosperous times is a tempting proposition. Very few cities have tried bankruptcy so far, but many are considering it.

The experience of Vallejo offers some warnings on the dangers of going the bankruptcy route, however. Harrisburg, Pa., and others on the brink, take note.

Vallejo’s bankruptcy resulted in a $9.5 million legal bill and a black eye to its reputation. Bankruptcy is a booming announcement that the local government is dysfunctional. For some businesses, having the city’s name on the letterhead becomes an embarrassment. A lawyer and real estate broker recently moved out of Central Falls, not because he didn’t like the city, but because its name has become a stigma associated with failure.

But like other depressed factory towns, Central Falls retains its reputation as a nice place filled with nice working people. Less than an hour from Boston and loaded with some lovely housing now selling super-cheap, the city will rise. Its next generation, meanwhile, is playing soccer while the sun shines.

Central Falls may be a nice place full of nice people, but they spent too much money, made promises they could not keep, drove out businesses, and went broke.  Who are the “terrorists” — the ones who desroyed the economic viability of their own communities or the ones trying to clean it up?  It is amazing that people such as Harrop choose to attack the latter while giving the former a complete pass.

Published in: on August 9, 2011 at 11:41 am  Leave a Comment  

Talk About Stuck On Stupid

Widener Law School has decided to double down after a faculty committee determined that a couple of students — Jennifer Perez and Nadege Tandoh, to be precise — falsely accused law professor Lawrence Connell of engaging in racist and sexist conduct.  The school is requiring Connell to submit to a psychiatric examination before it will reinstate him.  Professor Jacobson has the details.

Speaking of nutjobs, who in their right mind would go to Widener or hire one of its graduates after this spectacle?  Not me.  The place is a joke.

Published in: on August 9, 2011 at 10:57 am  Leave a Comment  

Is Obama Smart?

No.  “The presidency of Barack Obama is a case study in stupid does.”

You read it here first, though.

Published in: on August 9, 2011 at 10:40 am  Leave a Comment  

The Brilliant Fast And Furious Operation

This, apparently, was the ATF’s plan for the Fast and Furious operation:

1.   Sell over a thousand weapons to Mexican Sinaloa drug cartel.

2.   Don’t follow the guns.

3.   Don’t follow the money.

4.   ???

5.   Take the entire Sinaloa cartel down!  Yeah baby!

It didn’t quite work out as planned.  Details here

The more I read about it, the more I am convinced that the whole plan was directed at using U.S.-bought  weapons in the hands of Mexican drug cartels as an excuse to agitate for more gun control in the U.S.

Via Ace of Spades.

Published in: on August 5, 2011 at 5:16 pm  Comments (2)  

Welcome Back, Carter

Today, the stock market did something it has not done since the Jimmy Carter administration — achieve a nine session declining streak.  Obama as a Carter retread is increasingly looking like a best-case scenario.

Published in: on August 4, 2011 at 4:52 pm  Leave a Comment  

This Kind Of Sums Up The Whole Obama Administration

“I think the key is not to get too bogged down in detail.”   Seriously.

Even with this kind of fluff, Obama can’t play it straight:

“If somebody asks about taxes, nobody is really interested in hearing what precise marginal tax rate change would you like to see in the tax code,” Obama said. “What they want to know is that our campaign stands for a fair, just approach to the tax code that says everybody has to chip in, and that it’s not right if a hedge fund manager is being taxed at a lower rate than his or her secretary.”

Really, “everybody has to chip in”?  OK, how about the 49% who pay no federal income taxes whatsoever?  Somehow, I don’t think Obama wants them paying their fair share. 

On Afghanistan and Iraq, Obama said: “If somebody asks about the war, whether it’s Iraq or Afghanistan — if it’s Iraq, you have a pretty simple answer, which is all our folks are going to be out of there by the end of the year. If it’s Afghanistan, you can talk about, look, we think it’s time for us to transition to Afghan lead and rebuild here at home. So, again, it’s a values issue: Where are we prioritizing our resources?”

Out by the end of what year?  I am not in favor of abandoning Iraq or Afghanistan, but who on earth would believe Obama’s time-tables at this point, even if they wanted to?  Every year, its “by the end of the year,” and the deadline keeps slipping. 

That’s one of the essential problems with Obama — he just makes stuff up.  The end of this year becomes the end of next year, which later becomes the end of the year after that.  Taxing hedge fund managers becomes taxing small business owners and those trying to acquire some modicum of wealth, and will eventually become taxing the middle class — without ever openly advocating for it, mind you — to pay for an ever-expanding welfare and regulatory state.

Published in: on August 4, 2011 at 2:02 pm  Leave a Comment  

If You’re That Proud Of It, Go Into Porn . . .

. . . but stick to more honorable professions and avoid politics.

Another Democrat has just been caught sending pics of his Weiner to some chick over email.  WTF is wrong with these people?  At leat he isn’t currently married.  He’s currently really fucking stupid, but not married.  As someone who is happily married but often stupid,  I recognize the difference.

From someone who snoops through emails for a living, here’s a newsflash.  Copies of every email you send are probably out there somewhere.  Actually, lots of copies are as well.  So keep your junk out of the airwaves. 

If you are dumb enough to do shit like this, you should probably stay out of the gene pool.  And you should definitely avoid politics. You are too dumb, even for that.

Anyway, masochists among you “can see one of the pics at the link. Don’t worry, they’ve blocked out his little constituent.”  I shall restrain myself from clicking.  Or commenting on the size of his “constituency.”

Published in: on August 4, 2011 at 12:06 am  Leave a Comment  

The Spending Debate IS About Jobs

The next media meme is rapidly forming now that the debt ceiling debate is done (and widely believed to have been lost by Obama and congressional Dems) — now that the distraction is over, it’s time to focus on JOBS.  Over at Ace’s place, they are having some fun with Jake Tapper’s quip that the president  has done quite a few pirouettes towards focusing on jobs without much success.

Nice, but not enough.  The media and Dems (but I repeat myself) are desperate to frame the government’s deficit spending in two incredibly harmful ways. 

First, they are framing government spending as an imperiled bulwark against further economic decline.  Basically, they are channelling Krugman and the other crazy-Keynesians.  You know, the story: “The hundreds of billions of dollars thrown down the rat-hole to date were somehow successful in staving off another Great Depression, so we need to throw hundreds of billions more after it to fend off the Great Recession.”  Then, trust us, we’ll deal with the debt/deficit issues decisively later.  Really.  We mean it.  You really can trust us. 

Second, they are trying to frame the deficit debate as a distraction from, instead of an integral part of, job creation.  Nonsense.  The massive governmental overreach of the Dems and the Obama Administration is why jobs are not being created.  The money is there, but no one will invest it so long as these clowns are in power.  They are far more interested in confiscating and redistributing wealth than fostering conditions that favoring creating it.

Conservatives from all quarters need to push back hard on the false media narrative.  The debt debate is not a distraction from jobs issues, but an essential part (regulatory reform being another key pillar) of freeing up job creation.  Ensure that taxes will not be raised, get government out of the way, restore  certainty and faith in the rule of law, and take the target off business’s backs, and employers will hire again.  It’s not that complicated.

Published in: on August 3, 2011 at 11:24 pm  Leave a Comment  

Fear And Loathing At The Other McCain

Another great rant, this time from The Other McCain.

Perhaps you see my point without me explaining it, but I’ll explain it anyway: We all got screwed over in a lousy deal.

It doesn’t matter, in this context, whether you’re a left-winger who wants to tax Donald Trump into the poorhouse, or a right-winger who wants to zero out the budget for the National Endowment for the Arts.

At a moment like this, the real division is between Chumps, who foolishly expected politicians to deliver on their promises, and Cynics, who never for a moment expected anything other than a bipartisan swindle. And in case you were in the former category — an idealistic young True Believer who hasn’t lived long enough to cultivate the cynicism necessary to understand how politics really works — isn’t it high time you grow the hell up?

Count me in the Cynic camp.  Spending cuts will be promised; tax increases will be delivered. 

Takeaway line: “Becoming a conservative doesn’t mean you have to quit hating Republicans.”  Amen, brother.

By the way, McCain is heading over to Iowa on a shoe-leather Fear and Loathing excursion onto the 2012 campaign trail.  Hit his tip jar with a donation to support some first-hand non-MSM reporting if you are so inclined.  I did.

Published in: on August 2, 2011 at 1:02 pm  Comments (2)  

“To Hell With You People”

Jonah Goldberg has a great rant up at NRO’s The Corner.  It is a must read.  Here’s a taste:

So flashforward to this week. Tom Friedman — who knows a bit about Hezbollah — calls the tea partiers the “Hezbollah faction” of the GOP bent on taking the country on a “suicide mission.” All over the place, conservative Republicans are “hostage takers” and “terrorists,” “terrorists” and “traitors.” They want to “end life as we know it on this planet,” says Nancy Pelosi. They are betraying the Founders, too. Chris Matthews all but signs up for the “Make an Ass of Yourself” contest at the State Fair. Joe Nocera writes today that “the Tea Party Republicans can put aside their suicide vests.” Lord knows what Krugman and Olbermann have said.

Then last night, on the very day Gabby Giffords heroically returns to cast her first vote since that tragic attack seven months ago, the vice president of the United States calls the Republican party a bunch of terrorists.

No one cares. I hate the “if this were Bush” game so we’re in luck. Instead imagine if this was Dick Cheney calling the Progressive Caucus (or whatever they’re called) a “bunch of terrorists” on the day Giffords returned to the Congress. Would the mainstream media notice or care? Would Meet the Press debate whether this raises “troubling questions” about the White House’s sensitivity? Would Andrea Mitchell find some way to blame Sarah Palin for Dick Cheney’s viciousness? Would Keith Olbermann explode like a mouse subjected to the Ramone’s music in Rock and Roll High School? Something inside me hidden away shouts, “Hell yes they would!”

 That is because the whole civility issue was never about civility at all.  It was about trying to squelch dissent.  That is also what calling Tea Partiers racist terrorist jihadist suicide bombers is about.  The Democrats are losing the debate, so they want their adversaries to shut up.

Published in: on August 2, 2011 at 12:42 pm  Leave a Comment  

Because The Past 53 Attempts Worked So Well

“Federal Reserve policy makers may start weighing additional steps to prop up the recovery after growth fell below 1 percent in the first half of this year and economists began cutting second-half growth forecasts.”  The solution for government failures is always more government intervention.

Published in: on August 2, 2011 at 12:10 pm  Leave a Comment  

The NYT Follows The Dems’ Lead

Not much of a surprise here.  Yesterday, Republicans and Tea Partiers were terrorists according to the Vice President and House Democrats.  Today, columnist Joe Nocera declares that “the country has watched in horror as the Tea Party Republicans have waged jihad on the American people.”  Nice.

Let’s see.  Spending under Obama has increased from under 20% of GDP to over 25% in just a couple of years.  Our federal debt has gone from $10.626 Trillion as of January 20, 2009 to $14.343 Trillion just 2 1/2 years later.  An increase of 35%.

What did we get for it?  Anemic growth and persistent unemployment.  So who, exactly, is waging war on the U.S. economy?  Where do these people think we are going to find the money for all of this spending?  Under the mattresses of “millionaires and billionaires”?  It is never going to happen.  Wealth is mobile.  If the government tries to confiscate wealth, those who create it — along with jobs for the rest of us — will take their money and our jobs elsewhere.

By the way, what happened to civility in political discourse?  We have Dems in Congress and the Vice President calling political opponents terrorists, NYT columnists calling them jihadists.  And at USA Today, it’s racist to oppose the President’s profligate spending, partisanship, or liberal agenda. 

Lovely people.

Published in: on August 2, 2011 at 10:11 am  Leave a Comment  

Regulation: The Silent Job-Killer

Most people have no idea how pervasive and expensive regulatory compliance is in the U.S.  It is increasingly worse, especially under the Obama Administration’s EPA. 

Fresh on the heels of sacrificing U.S. industry on the mantle of global warming by taking over carbon emissions, the EPA has now set its sights on ozone.  The EPA itself estimates that compliance with a new standard for ozone emissions will cost industry at least $90 Billion per year. That’s $90 Billion — per year — that won’t be spent on increasing productivity and competitiveness, hiring new workers, or increasing wages. 

Oh, research by a Manufacturers Alliance/MAPI economist concludes that the costs are slightly higher than that:

• GDP would be reduced by $676.8 billion in 2020 (in 2010 dollars), an amount that represents 3.6 percent of projected 2020 GDP in the baseline case (2.5 percent annual GDP growth);

• Total U.S. job losses attributable to a 60 ppb ozone standard are estimated to rise to 7.3 million by 2020, a figure equal to 4.3 percent of the projected 2020 labor force;

• Job jeopardy and the impacts of a 60 ppb ozone standard are largest in states where there is considerable manufacturing and refining activity. The states with the largest job losses include: Texas, which would lose nearly 1.7 million jobs at a total attainment cost and reduction in GDP of $452 billion (in 2010 dollars); Louisiana, which would lose 983,000 jobs at a cost of $270 billion; California, which would lose 846,000 jobs at a cost of $210 billion; Illinois, which would lose 396,000 jobs at a cost of $98 billion; and Pennsylvania, which would lose 351,000 jobs at a cost of $86 billion;

• Together, annual attainment costs and reduced GDP in 2020 would total $1.7 trillion.

This, of course, is on top of the costs of carbon emissions regulation, the forthcoming 100,000+ pages of ObamaCare regulation, the FCC’s new net neutrality regulation, and so on.  Over-regulation is a large part of the reason that 9%+ unemployment and anemic growth is the new Obama normal.  Hope for a change in 2012.

Published in: on August 2, 2011 at 9:41 am  Comments (1)