Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Obama's agenda of hate

Barack Obama’s budget address last week ranks among the most dishonest and dishonorable presidential speeches in generations. It contained an avalanche of false and misleading statements. It was shallow and bitterly partisan. Yet the speech served a useful purpose: It provided the American people in general, and Republicans in particular, with the basic line of attack President Obama will use between now and the 2012 election.

The White House strategy is clear: argue that Obama wants to restore fiscal balance by raising taxes on “millionaires and billionaires” while those who don’t favor higher taxes on the wealthy are fundamentally unserious. As a political matter, of course, class warfare does not have a particularly successful track record. But, to keep it that way, Republicans need to provide a compelling response to the Obama strategy. Fortunately such a response exists.

Obama’s argument is built on sand. A tax increase on the wealthy would fall far short of the revenues needed to reverse our fiscal trajectory. Our budget problems are significantly worse today than they were in the 1990s. There are not nearly enough wealthy people in the nation to tax in order to tame our debt. If the president wants higher taxes to improve our fiscal imbalance, he will need to embrace a massive middle-class tax increase and/or a value added tax (VAT). But Obama hasn’t shown the slightest preference for that option. It’s pure fiction to pretend that higher taxes on those making more than $200,000 will make much of a dent in our debt, given the size of our long-term spending problem. Obama’s argument isn’t with Republicans. It’s with basic arithmetic.

Republicans need to unmask the philosophy guiding modern liberalism when it comes to taxes. What liberals are interested in isn’t growth so much as egalitarianism and redistribution for its own sake. For many on the left, increasing taxes isn’t about economics as much as morality. They believe taxing the wealthy is a virtue, to the point that they would penalize “the rich” even if that has harmful economic consequences. Recall that during a campaign debate, when asked by Charles Gibson about his support for raising capital gains taxes even if that caused a net revenue loss to the Treasury, Obama sided with tax increases “for purposes of fairness.”

Higher taxes would keep our current welfare state in place for only a little while longer. The entitlement apparatus would remain unsustainable. Tax increases might slightly delay, but could not forestall, a fiscal crack-up. The only thing that can is reconfiguring and restructuring our entitlement programs, most especially Medicare. That is what Paul Ryan’s plan does—and what President Obama’s budget avoids doing.

The point cannot be made often enough: Modern liberalism, as embodied in the Obama presidency, is the defender of the status quo. And the status quo is a road to economic ruin.

It is important for Republicans to put this debate in the right frame. Left unaddressed, our crushing burden of debt will cripple the American economy. Yet the aim of conservatism isn’t simply lower deficits and debt. It’s also limited government and a thriving society. A leviathan state is injurious because of its effect on civic character, because it undermines self-reliance and creates dependency. And this, in turn, results in an enervation of the entrepreneurial spirit that is necessary for innovation and prosperity.

Barack Obama has amassed a dismal economic record as president. (Former senator Phil Gramm points out that if Barack Obama had matched Ronald Reagan’s post-recession recovery rate, 15.7 million more Americans would have jobs.) Obama can’t campaign on his record—so he’s betting his reelection chances on stoking embers of anger and resentment. That’s about all that’s left of hope and change.



Some more food for thought for The Donald

According to the typical liberal media narrative, those of us who have questioned President Obama's life documents are kooks. Nuts. Creeps. "Birthers." When Donald Trump raises issues with the birth certificate, members of the left, right, and center assume that he's doing so for political reasons and that there's no real story. They use the Old Jedi Mind Trick: "nothing to see here ... move along."

There's only one problem. There's something to see here.

There has been an enormous amount of misinformation with regard to Obama's life documents from well-meaning grassroots activists (some of whom are too trusting or inexperienced to know how to vet information properly) to media personalities (who are often sloppy and/or ignorant of the facts involved) to agenda-driven snake oil salesmen (who are using grassroots ire to fundraise or sell their books) to outright disinformation supplied by the Obama Administration itself. But just because there are many people who confuse the life documents issue doesn't mean there isn't one.

In fact, there are two.

For over two years, I have been privy to private investigators' files, have seen private investigations of other private investigations, have done my own research -- and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that there are two crucial problems with President Obama's life documents. First, the registration number on Obama's "Certification of Live Birth" (which, as Trump recently explained to an incredulous Meredith Vieira, is not a long form birth certificate) is out of sequence to other birth certificates issued on the very next day in Hawaii to a pair of twins named Nordyke (certifications of live birth and birth certificates carry the same registration number).

Second, according to a private investigator, Susan Daniels, whose work was validated by at least two other investigators I'm aware of, the Social Security number that Obama used for approximately 25 years was issued with a Connecticut-based number, though neither Obama nor anyone in his family lived in that state at any point during their lifetimes. Bill O'Reilly claimed on his April 14, 2011, show that Obama's father, Barack Obama Sr., lived in Connecticut "for several years", but when I called O'Reilly for verification of his source(s), I was put into a voicemail and received no return call. As of this writing, it appears that O'Reilly's Mailbag Segment on Obama's Social Security number has been scrubbed by Fox News from the podcast of the show, along with some viewer mail on the subject.

Contrary to Mr. O'Reilly's claim and according to private investigations, after Obama Sr. left Hawaii, he lived in Cambridge, Mass, which he left for Africa in 1965. Obama Sr. never worked or took classes in Connecticut, and no one has ever proven or even given a reason for his living in that state. We know that 1977-79 was the period when Obama's Connecticut-based Social Security number was issued because private investigators have tracked down the dates when the Social Security numbers directly above and below Obama's number were issued. Both of these numbers were issued to Connecticut residents. But from 1972 until his death in a car crash in 1982, Barack Obama Sr. was in Kenya. During this period he was never in America. We reach this conclusion because Obama Sr.'s addresses have been tracked and can be seen in several private investigator data bases.

So it appears Obama Sr. had nothing to do with the application for Obama's Social Security number, as Mr. O'Reilly suggested. But then again, this is the same O'Reilly who also announced on his April 14th show that, although Obama's birth certificate has not been made public, Hawaii officials have it on file. This about-face conflicts with his 2008 statement that he'd actually seen the birth certificate and that's how he knows Obama is legitimate. "We have a copy of it," he said at the time. (NB: such a possession would have been illegal.)

Not only have these issues been ignored or derided by the press, any attempt to answer these questions has been stymied at the state level. Obscured by countless charges and counter-charges, and under the cover of stealth legislation, Hawaii has changed the law and the language with regard to the release of birth certificates, making it very difficult if not impossible to establish the veracity of any charges with regard to Obama's. One can only surmise that if fraud has indeed occurred, a cover-up of that fraud was the goal -- and accomplishment -- here.

But we need not allow state governments, or anyone, to cover up the Obama birth certificate conundrum. There is something we can do. We can ask states to adopt legislation that requires candidates to make public their long form birth certificates in order to be placed on the presidential ballot, and in accordance with Article 2, Section 1 of the Constitution. Arizona has already attempted something along these lines, but Arizona's law doesn't go far enough: it permits forensics testing only on secondary documents -- which is to say, if a long form birth certificate is not submitted, there will be no forensics testing on it. Instead, states must pass bills requiring forensics testing of any and all life documents submitted to them, if questions arise about them.

In order to push for such legislation, we all must shift into second gear. Instead of asking "where is the birth certificate?," we must now demand that whatever documents are released on a candidate's life, such documents must be subjected to forensic testing. Anyone who's concealed his documents (and hired lawyers to fight efforts in court to reveal his place of birth), as Mr. Obama has, appears not trustworthy; his actions alone demand forensics testing for any document he produces as proof of his "natural born" status. As Ronald Reagan famously put it, "Trust, but verify."

To date, no such total verification has taken place and thus secrets remain hidden. Instead, sloppy reporting and careless statements, including one made by the Republican National Committee (whom I also called to verify their sources and have received no return call), have been based on second-hand reporting rather than on investigative fact checking. And Obama has something to hide. If he didn't, Obama's attorney, Bob Bauer, would not be sending bullying letters to other attorneys promising sanctions, court costs, etc., if the birth certificate case were pursued against them (see threatening letter here). Obama wouldn't be spending money to defend against these lawsuits if there were no problems -- he'd be releasing his documentation pronto. For his trouble, Bob Bauer has been promoted to White House Counsel. Clearly, Obama's life documents -- which remain sealed from public view -- pose a problem for him, and the behavior of his inner circle proves it.

This is something that Mr. Trump seems to know instinctively. He has been unafraid in his pursuit of Obama's birth certificate. He has suggested an investigation of Hawaiian Governor Neil Abercrombie, who brashly promised that he would release Obama's birth certificate when he took office, only to say -- after having dug into the birth records -- that he didn't know he wasn't allowed to release such a thing. After Mr. Trump's perfectly reasonable suggestion, Abercrombie has been quiet.

Trump has stated that he has investigators on the ground in Hawaii checking on the birth certificate firsthand, and has stated that they "can't believe" what they are finding. Trump may understand that deception has already occurred here -- when Obama released his "Certification of Live Birth" in 2007 as if it were a valid birth certificate, it appears he meant to deceive the public. Trump's refusal to back off the birth certificate issue has the elites frowning, the base in an uproar, and Obama on his heels.

Meanwhile, the Republican establishment continues to shrink from the once-in-a-lifetime political opportunity Obama has handed them by his concealments. Frightened to attack Obama's "character," they instead insist on attacking his policies -- the same failed strategy that McCain (and they) have already tried. The Obama campaign and presidency, day after day, assassinated Bush's character (and now others) and lied continually, full of guile, about Obama's policies and political beliefs at the same time, and they continue this practice even today.

Why? Because it's effective. The vast majority of Americans already agree with Republicans on the major issues -- health care, "don't ask, don't tell," the stimulus package, the deficit -- policy arguments which Republicans have lost to Obama because they refuse to pull out the big guns. Were the Democrats thinking about beating Nixon on policy when they went after him on Watergate? The Republicans seem willing to allow Obama to waltz to a second term, unchallenged in this terribly important Constitutional issue, and Americans care deeply about their Constitution, simply out of spinelessness.

Trump has a spine, which is why he is gaining momentum and has pulled way ahead of the pack. Now we must convert that momentum into action. Instead of passing judgment about who is crazy or sane on the issues of the birth certificate and the Social Security number, we must ask Obama to show his hand, and we then must forensically test whatever he has, or he must fold. Forensics testing is not an outlandish idea; as distasteful as this analogy might be -- a sordid affair vs. a serious Constitutional issue -- forensics testing of a blue dress a few years ago revealed another set of lies of a young U.S. president, also attempting to defraud the public.

Because of the irregularities and unanswered questions outlined above, certainly the American people have a right to know whether the birth record that supposedly establishes the eligibility of their president is un-tampered with. And they also have a right to know whether the social security number that he has been using is genuinely his or stolen. Use of another person's social security number is a felony.

In the interests of full transparency and disclosure, in the interests of protecting the Constitution and the integrity of our elections, we need to force Obama and all other presidential candidates to show us their birth certificates before they join any presidential campaign and demonstrate they are eligible to serve us. Anything less is a deep betrayal of our most basic democratic ideals.




Hungary: Pols okay conservative constitution: "Hungarian lawmakers approved a socially and fiscally conservative new constitution yesterday that was blasted by rights groups and the political opposition for measures including a ban on gay marriage and protection of the life of a fetus from conception. Conservative Prime Minister Viktor Orban says the constitution will allow the former communist country to complete a transition to democracy and move to an era of sound finances and clean government after years of mismanagement"

Why we must freeze the debt limit: "A failure to increase the debt limit now would just create an ersatz 'crisis.' For too long, analysts and politicians have balked at the massive political impediments to reforming the federal budget — especially entitlement programs. Many now concede, actually, that no prudential reforms are likely unless there is an imminent 'crisis.' On the other hand, political liberals argue that there is no real 'crisis' — and so no need for real reforms. Well, here's the opportunity for a 'crisis' that 'should not be wasted.'"

Closing social distance: "Along with many of my fellow economists, I am drawn to the study of the nonmarket foundations of the market process. We find that examining the nature and significance of social capital, norms of trust and reciprocity, and conventions of fair play — combined with the traditional concerns of private property, the rule of law, and free trade — greatly improves our understanding of how social cooperation works or doesn’t work."

Welcome budget-cut talk: "Finally. A serious budget plan. House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan's proposal has the head-in-the-sand crowd horrified . A Washington Post columnist called it 'radical ... irresponsible ... extreme.' Ryan's plan offers some great things: less spending than President Obama wants; a path to a balanced budget; repeal of Obamacare; an end to corporate welfare. And it would make the social safety net sustainable rather than open-ended and going broke."

Are we allied to a corpse?: "The Post story about Britain and France, the leading military powers of NATO Europe, depleting their smart-bomb supply in a one-month clash with an African nation of 6 million, and begging the Yanks to come back and win the war for them, raises a major question. Is the most successful alliance in history, which kept the Red Army of Stalin, Khrushchev and Brezhnev from smashing through the Fulda Gap and reaching the Channel, a hollow shell?"


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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)


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