The Liberal Press Meets the Law That Governs Government
MSNBC's Norah O'Donnell asked her "favorite wonk," liberal Washington Post child writer Ezra Klein, whether the GOP's opening the 112th Congress by reading the Constitution aloud is a gimmick.
Klein said that of course it was a gimmick because reading the Constitution aloud "has no binding effect on anything." Besides, Klein told O'Donnell, "the text is confusing because it was written more than 100 years ago."
Thus, before the Constitution was read aloud on the floor of the House for the first time in history, Mr. Klein said aloud what many of us had long suspected what the left thinks about the Constitution. To them, it's hot air like so much of what is said on the floor of the House of Representatives and the Senate.
In the twisted political world of Washington, the law that governs government -- the Constitution -- is malleable and negotiable like everything else that takes place in that town.
That is why it is important for constitutional conservatives to emphasize one point over and over. The Constitution isn't just a compact or a set of guiding principles. The Constitution is the law that governs government.
Those in government who seek to evade the Constitution seek to evade the law that binds them. Call them what you will: statists, ruling-class elites, bureaucrats, politicians. In a sense, however, they are every bit the miscreant lawbreakers as low-level hoodlums and high-level con artists, except they are lawbreakers who have been rewarded, not punished, for their lawbreaking.
The anti-constitutional left is in a quandary because the Constitution is now being forced on them. They are resorting to demagoguery against constitutional proponents. They may as well be attacking motherhood and apple pie, which they would if motherhood and apple pie threatened their political belief system.
In that regard, the Tea Party is like the new sheriff in town. Like a town run too long by the wrong element and gone bad, it's going to take some cleaning up, but the law that governs government will be enforced. And how will the liberal press handle all this, which is a threat to its own power base? As they say, stay tuned.
Congratulations, Speaker Boehner, to you and the members of your new majority in the U.S. House of Representatives. The gracious humility of your acceptance remarks was a vivid contrast to your predecessor's ill-mannered comments as she handed over the speaker's gavel. She clearly does not intend to be held accountable for the disastrous performance of her party in last November's elections.
Though former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's long-winded rudeness is an indication of the challenges you and other responsible members of the 112th Congress will face in the days ahead, your arrival on Capitol Hill is already having a positive effect in Washington. Shortly before you became speaker of the House, the Obama administration announced it is withdrawing its new regulation requiring "end-of-life counseling" for Medicare recipients. In short, there will be no "death panels." Then, just hours after you gaveled the new House to order, President Barack Obama's confrontational spokesman, Robert Gibbs, announced his resignation as White House press secretary. Now the hard work begins.
You already have received much advice in the month since we last spoke. Most Americans are aware you and your new 242-193 majority intend to vote next week on repealing "Obamacare." We also know Republican priorities include holding the line on tax increases, cutting federal spending, decreasing the deficit, and regulatory reform to stimulate the U.S. economy. All of those are important -- but none more so than protecting our nation's people and territory.
Though the president is the commander in chief of our armed forces and the day-to-day conduct of our foreign policy is the purview of the executive branch, there is much that must be done by Congress to protect our homeland and our people better. Here are five national security issues in urgent need of congressional attention:
--Secure America's borders. American citizens on our southern frontier say they are "under siege" from drug cartels and contraband traffickers. They are. Last year, the 111th Congress allocated $600 million to federal agencies for improved border security -- but not one cent went to state and local officials. New Drug Enforcement Administration agents, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers and Border Patrol personnel and equipment, such as unmanned aerial vehicles and sophisticated surveillance devices, are essential. But so is state and local law enforcement -- now going broke -- because many illegal entrants commit serious crimes once they have crossed the border. State and local officials need the resources and means to coordinate with federal agencies for the protection of our citizens. President Obama refuses to visit the Arizonan border. You should.
--Maintain America's military strength. The O-Team plans to make dramatic cuts in military spending based on the anticipated departure of all U.S. troops from Iraq and a cut in U.S. forces in Afghanistan -- even with 1,400 additional Marines being dispatched in the coming days to Kandahar province. Obama says withdrawals will be "conditions-based," but the only condition that makes sense in Afghanistan is winning. The 112th Congress should define victory as a representative government in Kabul that respects the human rights of the Afghan people, can defend itself against internal and external threats, and is a friend to the West.
Though "earmark" is now a four-letter word in Washington, Congress must prevent the Obama Pentagon from defunding new weapons systems, such as the Marines' Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle and the vertical takeoff and land variant of the F-35 strike aircraft. If we lose our ability to project military power, we invite attack.
--Counter terror. Obama insists on describing radical Islamic terrorists as "extremists" and treating them as common criminals. They are not. Radical Islamists are enemy combatants. Congress already is using the power of the purse to prevent the O-Team from transferring terror suspects from the detention center at Guantanamo Bay to the U.S. for trial in civilian courtrooms. The 112th Congress should vote to make this restriction a permanent matter of law. Let Obama veto the bill if he dares.
--Make energy independence a national priority. The Obama administration is abusing its regulatory authority to increase the price of hydrocarbon fuel. By making it nearly impossible to build nuclear power plants and refineries or exploit our own reserves, the O-Team has increased our reliance on foreign energy, making us more vulnerable to adversaries like Venezuela's Hugo Chavez and Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad while sending billions of petrodollars to places that fund radical Islam. Freeing up America's energy reserves is crucial to our national security and essential to economic recovery.
--Support democracy movements. The Obama administration purports to be concerned about Iranian efforts to acquire nuclear weapons, North Korean aggression, Somali piracy, slavery in Sudan, and Yemen's harboring terrorists. Though Obama has traveled around the world apologizing for America, he has shamefully abandoned support for democracy movements and human rights organizations. The 112th Congress must restore funding for democratic institutions overseas. This pillar of U.S. national security policy is much less expensive than other forms of foreign aid -- and far more effective than contrition.
The top 10 political lies of 2010
OK, we're game. Here, in no particular order, are the top 10 political lies of 2010.
1. Ninety-five percent of "working families" received a tax cut.
No. The bill gave tax cuts to those who pay taxes -- and gave money, "tax credits," to those who pay little or nothing in taxes. We used to call this welfare.
2. The General Motors bailout "worked."
Did it? Tell that to GM's bondholders. CNBC's Larry Kudlow wrote: "The GM bondholders own $27 billion and they're getting 10 percent of the common stock in an expected exchange. And the UAW owns $10 billion of the bonds and they're getting 40 percent of the stock." What would have happened had the government stepped aside and let the private sector take over -- a natural and necessary consequence of running a business into the ground? What about "moral hazard" -- shielding a company from the effect of its poor decisions -- which, in turn, encourages negligence and sloth on the part of other companies deemed "too big to fail"?
3. ObamaCare will "bend the cost curve down."
The alleged "savings" occur only by assuming politically unlikely and unpopular cuts in Medicare. Then there are sub-lies, including: "If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor." Obama later admitted, "I think that some of the provisions that got snuck in might have violated that pledge."
4. The tea party is "racist."
The proof? The head of the NAACP told CNN's Anderson Cooper that tea partyers used the racially coded rallying cry "take our country back." Unfortunately, Cooper ran a montage of Democrats like Bill Clinton, Howard Dean and John Kerry rousing supporters by demanding that they "take our country back." Yes, a handful of idiots held up stupid signs. And no, they weren't impaled and set on fire. Quick, somebody call Sharpton!
5. The $800 billion "stimulus" funded millions of "shovel-ready" jobs.
Vice President Joe Biden's June "Summer of Recovery" report claimed that "shovel-ready" projects created jobs. "Between ... tax relief, direct aid, and shovel-ready projects, the Recovery Act has ... created or retained between 2.2 and 2.8 million jobs." Even Obama, in October, admitted, "There's no such thing as 'shovel-ready projects.'" Oh.
6. Stimulus "saved or created" 3.5 million jobs.
The administration had predicted that 90 percent of the "saved or created" jobs would be private sector. Reason columnist Veronique de Rugy writes, "Four out of five jobs created were created in the public sector. (Two years into the stimulus) 682,370 jobs were reported created, not 3 million, and over 510,000 of these were in the public sector."
7. There is a "consensus," according to the White House website, that the stimulus plan "pulled us back from the brink of economic disaster."
Consensus? A poll by the Pew Research Center found that nearly two-thirds of Americans thought the stimulus did not contribute to job creation.
8. The 111th Congress was the "most productive" since -- pick one -- the New Deal, LBJ's Great Society or the beginning of the republic.
Define "productive." The deficit tripled from the '08 budget. The past two years produced almost $4 trillion in new debt, more than any Congress in history. This congressional "productivity" cost the Democrats their House majority and their Senate supermajority.
9. Bush-era "deregulation" caused the Gulf oil spill.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Bush placed "the employees of Big Oil in charge of regulating their own industry." The oil extraction business remains heavily regulated. Obama's administration, not Bush's, approved the Deepwater Horizon project.
10. Guantanamo Bay will be shut down in 2010.
Obama promised a closure in the first, and then the second, year of his administration. Gitmo exists for a reason. It confines Islamofascists who want to kill American "infidels." No other country that we can trust to keep the would-be killers confined wants them. "I'm going to close down Guantanamo" is yet another I'm-not-Bush promise that crashed-landed onto the mean streets of the real world. OK, technically not a "lie." But, whatever.
French airport security a joke too: "Security staff at two busy French airports failed to spot a handgun hidden inside the luggage of two reporters. The undercover journalists from state-run France 2's Envoye Special program boarded planes at Paris Charles de Gaulle and Marseille airport with the 9mm semi-automatic pistol. The guns had been dismantled into two pieces, inside their cabin bags, and then reassembled in the toilets mid-flight by one of the reporters. The program set out to prove perceived weaknesses in screening routines at French airports. One of the journalists, Linda Bendali, told France Info radio that a lack of attention was not the problem, rather "a lack of understanding of what they were supposed to be looking out for. They are not very familiar with dangerous weapons."
Confused thinking? "Defense Secretary Robert Gates has decided to send an additional 1,400 Marine combat forces to Afghanistan, officials said, in a surprise move ahead of the spring fighting season to try to cement tentative security gains [sic] before White House-mandated troop reductions begin in July. The Marine battalion could start arriving on the ground as early as mid-January."
Pentagon announces plans to rein in spending: "For the first time in more than a decade defined by costly wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the Pentagon announced plans Thursday to freeze its ballooning budget, forcing the services to shrink the Army and Marines and increase health care premiums for military retirees and their families. The Pentagon says it can stop asking for annual budget increases in 2015, adjusting its spending only for inflation. The last time the Pentagon's budget went down was in 1998."
Obama still angry at Honduras for ousting its Leftist dictator: "The U.S. says it is not renewing a $215 million aid program in Honduras. The U.S. Embassy did not give a reason in a statement announcing the decision. But Honduran officials claimed Thursday that it was because of corruption under the government of former President Manuel Zelaya, who was ousted in a June 2009 coup."
CA: Police issue warning about buying and selling gold: "With gold selling for more than $1,400 per ounce, officials remind the public that there are laws governing the buying and selling of gold, Pasadena police said in a written statement. 'The Pasadena Police Department would like to inform the public that buying gold is against the law unless you are licensed by the California Department of Justice,' the statement said."
CA: Blue Shield seeks rate hikes of as much as 59%: "Another big California health insurer has stunned individual policyholders with huge rate increases — this time it's Blue Shield of California seeking cumulative hikes of as much as 59% for tens of thousands of customers March 1. Blue Shield's action comes less than a year after Anthem Blue Cross tried and failed to raise rates as much as 39% for about 700,000 California customers. San Francisco-based Blue Shield said the increases were the result of fast-rising healthcare costs and other expenses resulting from new healthcare laws."
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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)