Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Some history the Left would like you to forget
The fraternal coming together of two socialist armies
After Stalin and Hitler had carved up Poland between them, there was a joint parade of the Soviet and Nazi armies in the city of Brest on 23 September, 1939. On the right in the picture is German Major General Heinz Guderian and Soviet Brigadier Semyon Krivoshein. The German is the better-dressed one, of course.
A Post-Racial President?
by Thomas Sowell
Many people hoped that the election of a black President of the United States would mark our entering a "post-racial" era, when we could finally put some ugly aspects of our history behind us. That is quite understandable. But it takes two to tango. Those of us who want to see racism on its way out need to realize that others benefit greatly from crying racism. They benefit politically, financially, and socially.
Barack Obama has been allied with such people for decades. He found it expedient to appeal to a wider electorate as a post-racial candidate, just as he has found it expedient to say a lot of other popular things-- about campaign finance, about transparency in government, about not rushing legislation through Congress without having it first posted on the Internet long enough to be studied-- all of which turned to be the direct opposite of what he actually did after getting elected.
Those who were shocked at President Obama's cheap shot at the Cambridge police for being "stupid" in arresting Henry Louis Gates must have been among those who let their wishes prevail over the obvious implications of Obama's 20 years of association with the Reverend Jeremiah Wright. Anyone who can believe that Obama did not understand what the racist rants of Jeremiah Wright meant can believe anything.
With race-- as with campaign finance, transparency and the rest-- Barack Obama knows what the public wants to hear and that is what he has said. But his policies as president have been the opposite of his rhetoric, with race as with other issues. As a state senator in Illinois, Obama pushed the "racial profiling" issue, so it is hardly surprising that he jumped to the conclusion that a policeman was racial profiling when in fact the cop was investigating a report received from a neighbor that someone seemed to be breaking into the house that Professor Gates was renting in Cambridge.
For those who are interested in facts-- and these obviously do not include President Obama-- there has been a serious study of racial profiling in a book titled "Are Cops Racist?" by Heather Mac Donald. Her analysis of the data shows how this issue has long been distorted beyond recognition by politics.
The racial profiling issue is a great vote-getter. And if it polarizes the society, that is a price that politicians are willing to pay in order to get votes. Academics who run black studies departments, as Professor Henry Louis Gates does, likewise have a vested interest in racial paranoia. For "community organizers" as well, racial resentments are a stock in trade. President Obama's background as a community organizer has received far too little attention, though it should have been a high-alert warning that this was no post-racial figure.
What does a community organizer do? What he does not do is organize a community. What he organizes are the resentments and paranoia within a community, directing those feelings against other communities, from whom either benefits or revenge are to be gotten, using whatever rhetoric or tactics will accomplish that purpose. To think that someone who has spent years promoting grievance and polarization was going to bring us all together as president is a triumph of wishful thinking over reality.
Not only Barack Obama's past, but his present, tell the same story. His appointment of an attorney general who called America "a nation of cowards" for not dialoguing about race was a foretaste of what to expect from Eric Holder. The way Attorney General Holder has refused to prosecute young black thugs who gathered at a voting site with menacing clubs, in blatant violation of federal laws against intimidating voters, speaks louder than any words from him or his president.
President Obama's first nominee to the Supreme Court is, like Obama himself, someone with a background of years of affiliation with an organization dedicated to promoting racial resentments and a sense of racial entitlement. An 18th century philosopher said, "When I speak I put on a mask. When I act I am forced to take it off." Barack Obama's mask slipped for a moment last week but he quickly recovered, with the help of the media. But we should never forget what we saw.
Rep. Conyers (D-MI): "What good is reading the bill?"
Congressman John Conyers (D-Naturally-MI) has finally committed the “unforgiveable sin.” In his own smarmy, dismissive manner, he has told the truth about how he and his elitist colleagues really feel about actually reading the bills with which they saddle the country-bumpkin American people. “What good is reading the bill,” the oily career politician ventured at a recent National Press Club luncheon, “if it’s a thousand pages and you don’t have two days and two lawyers to find out what it means after you read the bill?” Well, the answer to that question is really two-fold.
First, when you are a semi-literate shyster who has made your living being a race pimp for the past 40 years, there’s really very little sense in your reading the bills at all. To begin with, you wouldn’t understand them unless the monosyllabic words were written in big block letters with multi-colored crayolas. And, besides, all you really need to know is how much is earmarked for race-baiting set-asides.
Second, when you are busy committing and abetting fraud on a routine basis, it’s hard to take time out from your crowded schedule for trifling matters like fulfilling your constitutional duties.
After all, you are the man who repeatedly violated House ethics rules by directing staffers to work on local and state campaigns, and babysit and chauffeur your children. You are the man who allowed a former top aide convicted of fraud to obtain a fake passport through your office, and then flee to Ghana. And, of course, you are the man who stands accused of helping your jailbird wife attempt to defraud the Environmental Protection Agency.
Doesn’t really leave much time for reading 1,000-page pieces of bothersome legislation, does it? Much easier just to vote Yes, nationalize the entire medical industry, and stick the taxpayers with tens of billions of dollars a year for bogus healthcare treatment. But, then, that is the sinful, shameful nature of Washington politics as usual, isn’t it?
Blue Dogs: All Bark, No Bite
The Democrats’ self-styled fiscal conservatives don’t have a voting record to match their rhetoric
The Blue Dog Democrats could make or break health-care reform. That’s both good news and bad. It’s good news because the Blue Dog coalition, formed in 1995, currently lists 52 Democrats in the House of Representatives and boasts of being “fiscally conservative.” To emphasize their point, the Blue Dogs post the national debt (more than $11 trillion)—and the share every American has in that debt ($36,683)—on their Web site.
The Blue Dogs have even growled recently that the House’s health-care reform legislation is too expensive. It raises taxes too much and doesn’t do enough to slow the growth in health-care spending. But do the Blue Dogs really belong in the fiscal conservative pack? They talk like fiscal conservatives but vote like liberal Democrats. So far this year, the House has seen at least four major spending bills. Here’s how the Blue Dogs voted:
* The State Children’s Health Insurance Program (Schip). One of the first things the Democratic leadership wanted the newly inaugurated President Obama to sign was a huge expansion of Schip. Democrats have been trying to pass the expansion for over a year, with some bipartisan support. President George W. Bush vetoed the legislation twice, and Congress sustained his veto both times by a hair.
Schip was created for low-income uninsured children not eligible for Medicaid. Under the old bill, children whose family incomes were 200% of the federal poverty level were covered. With the new bill, Democrats increased funding to cover children whose family incomes are up to 300% of the federal poverty level—or $66,000 a year for a family of four. The Bush administration and most conservatives thought it should remain at 200%. Did the Blue Dogs agree? Only two voted against the expansion.
* The $787 billion stimulus. The next major spending package was Mr. Obama’s stimulus bill. Not one House Republican voted for the bill. The Blue Dogs? Only 10 of 52 voted against it.
* President Obama’s 2010 federal budget. In April, Congress took a vote on the president’s $3.5 trillion budget for 2010—by far the biggest spending package in history. Again, not one House Republican voted for the bill, but only 14 Blue Dogs joined them in opposition.
* The cap-and-trade energy tax. In June, the House took an enormous step by pushing through the president’s cap-and-trade energy tax. The legislation will stifle economic growth by imposing huge new costs on every business and each American household. Eight House Republicans voted for the bill. Twenty-nine Blue Dogs voted against the legislation.
Had those eight House Republicans voted with their party, it’s not clear that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi would have let that many Blue Dogs break with the Democrats. It is also unclear how many Blue Dogs voted against the bill because of their self-proclaimed fiscal conservatism. Blue Dogs from energy-producing states, for instance, may have been looking out for local interests.
So the question is how many expensive government expansions can a group of congressmen vote for and still claim to be fiscally conservative? Only one Blue Dog, Bobby Bright of Alabama, voted against all four bills. And only four Blue Dogs voted against as many as three of the bills.
Republicans have long called themselves fiscal conservatives. But after their spending spree in the first six years of the Bush administration, they are widely perceived to have tarnished their brand. Are the Blue Dogs tarnishing their brand, too? If 80% of them voted for the stimulus bill and nearly 75% voted for the 2010 federal budget, can the group rightfully claim to be fiscally conservative?
The health-care bill will be the final test. The House legislation will cost at least $1 trillion over 10 years, including around $550 billion to $600 billion in new taxes. That doesn’t count the employer mandate that will force employers to provide coverage or pay a penalty.
If all House Republicans oppose the bill, which seems likely, the Blue Dogs have enough votes to make or break health care in the House. Blue Dog Mike Ross of Arkansas says the bill can’t pass the House. He’s right, but only if 40 Blue Dogs or other Democrats vote against the bill.
The Democratic leadership and the president will put enormous pressure on the Blue Dogs to support the legislation. Now we’ll see if the Blue Dogs have bite to go along with their bark.
HI: State health director reaffirms Obama’s birth certificate: “In an attempt to quash persistent rumors that President Obama was not born in Honolulu on Aug. 4, 1961, Hawaii’s health director reiterated this afternoon that she has personally seen Obama’s birth certificate in the Health Department’s archives. ‘I, Dr. Chiyome Fukino, director of the Hawaii State Department of Health, have seen the original vital records maintained on file by the Hawai’i State Department of Health verifying Barrack Hussein Obama was born in Hawaii and is a natural-born American citizen. I have nothing further to add to this statement or my original statement issued in October 2008 over eight months ago …’ On Oct. 31, Fukino originally tried to put an end to the belief among so-called ‘birthers’ that Obama was not born in the United States and thus was ineligible to run for the office of president.” [Well why will Obama not let anyone see it?]
Fighting healthcare & the politics of fear: “In crisis marketing, the GOP, moderate Democrats and anyone else who has doubts about this healthcare plan can’t simply say ‘no’ since it is obvious healthcare does need repair. They have to acknowledge something has to be done. What is happening with healthcare? Why does it seem that if we don’t go along with the White House’s agenda we’re heading into the abyss? This is the same thing that happened with bank bailouts and is still happening with global warming. This is what I would call a crisis marketing tactic, a CMT. With CMT, the momentum for change is created by suggesting that the alternative to change — even radical change — is simply too dire to contemplate.”
The real unemployment rate hits a 68 year high: “Although you have to dig into the statistics to know it, unemployment in the United States is now worse than at any time since the end of the Great Depression. … The official unemployment rate hit 9.4% in May — already as high as the peak unemployment rates in all but the 1982 recession, the worst since World War II. And topping the 1982 recession’s peak rate of 10.8% is now distinctly possible. The current downturn has pushed up unemployment rates by more than any previous postwar recession.”
Storm insurance irresponsibly cheap: “Texas is a model of fiscal stability compared with most other states — with one glaring exception. Texas is one hurricane away from bankrupting its state-run wind insurance pool. The Texas Windstorm Insurance Association, Texas’ insurance market of last resort for coastal property owners who don’t have private insurance, is living on borrowed time and borrowed money. Coastal insurance rates are priced below market and below the risk posed by coastal properties.”
How governments run things: “Yes, we know the argument, if only those wise people who had learned how to steal the most votes were put in charge of running everything then we’d all be gambolling in flowered meadows and life for all would be immeasurably better. This argument works right up until we look at what actually happens when the politicians manage to run something. Like, say, the monopoly off track bookie in New York State.”
Wrong big picture, dangerous fine print : “President Obama has of late been spending much of his energy arguing that it is absolutely urgent that both chambers of Congress pass a bill this summer so that a final bill will get to his desk by October. Why? Why, because ‘the time is now.’ And the status quo is unacceptable. And we’ve never been this close before. Never mind that in the bills as now written, nothing would actually happen for more than three years. Indeed, no uninsured American would get health insurance under the Democratic bills until 2013 at the earliest. In fact, the CBO has estimated that the number of uninsured Americans will increase in 2011 and 2012, before the bills’ major provisions go into effect. And of course 2013 is safely after the next presidential election, just in case anyone’s keeping track. This is about political momentum. The administration and Democratic leaders in Congress understand that the more people learn about what these bills would actually do to American health care, the less the public will like them.”
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The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialist) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party" (In German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei)
Posted by JR at 12:34 AM