Saturday, March 15, 2008
Subsidies are bad, m'kay?
Imagine this scene: The U.S. Congress is about to pass a bill that will offer cheap loans to American oil companies. The government will loan them $150 for every barrel of oil they produce, with the oil itself serving as collateral. This guarantees that oil will always sell for at least $150 per barrel, because the companies can surrender their oil to Uncle Sam at that price instead of selling it for less. Meanwhile, a system of tariffs will prevent foreign companies from selling oil at prices that can compete with $150 per barrel.
Sounds like a bad idea, doesn’t it? This would force taxpayers to put billions at risk for a program that makes their gasoline more expensive. It would also drive up prices for other goods and services that contain or require the use of oil or gasoline. Oil companies would be the only beneficiaries — at our expense, they would be rolling in dough.
So if this is a bad idea for oil, why is it a good idea for sugar? This is precisely the program currently in place, and Congress is poised to reauthorize it before it expires March 15.
If someone knows the state of this legislation, please let me know.
The Rise of American Incompetence
We used to be the world's most skillful entrepreneurs and managers. Now we're laughingstocks. What happened?
Hard to argue with the article's gist. Let me throw my two cents in: For decades now state and federal laws, rules and taxes have been hampering private individuals and enterprises. The Law and the Tax Code used to make a certain degree of sense. One didn't need a lawyer just to comply with the law in normal operation of business. Today, much of American productivity, effort, labor and talent is expended servicing the arcane and arbitrary legal system encompasing tort law, tax law and regulatory law.
You can thank Congress.
Website for Marine Small Wars articles
Want to know how and why we fight? Avail yourself on these resources from the premier American fighting organization.
Posted by BigDog at 9:01 PM
"If you are not prepared to use force to defend civilization, then be prepared to accept barbarism." - Thomas Sowell
"Ideology, politics and journalism, which luxuriate in failure, are impotent in the face of hope and joy." - P. J. O’Rourke
"We're in a war, dammit! We're going to have to offend somebody!" - John Adams
Open thread. Comments are unmoderated this evening until further notice. I reserve the right to arbitrarily and capriciously delete comments without explanation.
Posted by BigDog at 8:09 PM
Friday, March 14, 2008
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 4:21 PM
Thursday, March 13, 2008
His pastor Rev. Wright.
It's not just the clip you watched a few posts down. Wright preaches political plenty and he has had a lot to say (“God d*mn America!”). It might not matter so much if Obama hadn't gushed over him in his autobiography and named the book "The Audacity of Hope" after a sermon's of Rev. Wright.
Even the MSM is paying attention:
Sen. Barack Obama's pastor says blacks should not sing "God Bless America" but "God damn America."
Is Obama's Pastor a Liability?
The Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Obama's pastor for the last 20 years at the Trinity United Church of Christ on Chicago's south side, has a long history of what even Obama's campaign aides concede is "inflammatory rhetoric," including the assertion that the United States brought on the 9/11 attacks with its own "terrorism."
No matter how one feels about the race issues, Wright's preaching is a big turn off and quite frankly, nutty to those not in his camp.
Obama is trying to dismiss concerns saying "I don't think my church is actually particularly controversial." He said Rev. Wright "is like an old uncle who says things I don't always agree with," telling a Jewish group that everyone has someone like that in their family.
Well then, let's discuss what you don't agree with him on. Let's flesh it out. It's time to be honest.
Update: This might be his second problem.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 10:39 PM
From First Read:
From NBC's Chuck ToddWhile the idea of Florica re-vote seems to be fading, there is a lot of momentum among Michigan Democrats for a June 3 re-vote, according to informed sources in the state. There are a couple of hurdles, including who would pay for the primary (100% Clinton donors or 50-50 split between Clinton and Obama donors; the preference of state Democrats). The state would pass a law that would appropriate the money to run this special primary election; not a mail-in, but a full bore in-person 100% open primary. The state, in turn, would be reimbursed by the Democratic Party or potentially other entities or even seeing if it's possible for donors to contribute to the state directly. Everyone seems to be on board in the state Democratic world of Michigan, including the governor, the Dingells, Carl Levin, the Kilpatricks and the U.A.W. For those that follow Michigan Democratic politics closely, you'll know getting all those folks in agreement isn't easy.
Also, there appears to be very little GOP resistance in the state legis. (or even the McCain campaign) from allowing this to happen. So, barring some major objection by the Obama folks (who are being briefed on this plan later today), the possibility of a Michigan re-vote on June 3 is very high. The only thing that could stop this primary logistically is if the state party is told, legally, they can't raise the large soft money contributions they would need to raise in order to come up with the $10-12 million. All of this needs to be agreed to (including by the state legislature) in the next 10-14 days.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 10:30 PM
They don't see children for the gifts the are. The greatest gift we are given. From Peter Robinson at NRO:
With just a single exception, the non-Muslim population of every country in Europe now has a birth rate at below replacement levels. (The exception is Malta, and God bless it.) Why, I ask Bruce Thornton today on Uncommon Knowledge, do Europeans so steadfastly refuse to reproduce?
Because, replies the author of Decline and Fall: Europe’s Slow-Motion Suicide, “children are expensive. They require you to sacrifice your time and your interests and your own comfort. If your highest good is pleasure, if your highest good is a sophisticated life, then children get in the way. Why would you spend so much money and so much energy on children if your highest good is simply material well-being? That's sort of the spiritual dimension of the problem."“The spiritual dimension of the problem.” There are so few children in Europe, in other words, because there are so few believers.There’s more. (Look for Chapter 4 of 5).
There is a profound truth in those two paragraphs that Europe would do well to understand (Actually the U.S. could do a bit better understanding this as well).
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 8:41 AM
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
TV in Britain! As you can see they even have his logo in the bottom corner! They don't care! I don't know what we can do, but dave deserves some $$ for this I think!
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 8:49 PM
That is what former Democratic vice presidential nominee Geraldine Ferraro and Hillary supporter said. And then she "removed" herself from the campaign. Some say it can't possible be an asset to be black.
The truth is this. Obama would be getting a lot of attention whether he was white or black because he is young, refreshing, new, and charismatic. Not to mention an inspiring speaker. That draws people to him first. But the truth of the matter is that being black is icing on the cake.
Why? Because it is cool to think we have come so far in such a short time. It's cool to think that we could nominate a black man who realistically could become President in my lifetime (and I'm not that old).
When I was little blacks couldn't vote for God's sake. Blacks couldn't swim in the same public swimming pool where I swam. So yes, in that respect, I can understand black Americans coming out in droves to vote for him. It's historic and it's cool and let's face it, he's cool.
But he is also wrong on almost every issue, from abortion to national security, to the war, to taxes, to health care. He's just dead wrong no matter what his skin color was. He is also inexperienced. And that would be true if he were blue.
I don't blame blacks for coming out and supporting him. I understand it completely. And maybe this will bring us past color once and for all. Maybe next time a black man or women runs for the Presidency we won't be so excited about the color of his skin, but about his beliefs.
I'm looking forward to that day.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 7:16 PM
..like those at Democratic Underground, whether banks volunteering information (actually required) to give info to the IRS is because of the Patriot Act.
That would be no.
Currency transaction reporting requirements were enacted in the Bank Secrecy Act of 1970, and money laundering was made a crime in overhaul of the federal narcotics laws that took place in 1986. Believe it or not, Karl Rove did not diabolically dream these provisions up to trap unwary Democrats, nor are they part of George W. Bush's post-9/11 Politics of Fear.
Long before we had an international terrorism problem, these laws were developed to target domestic criminal enterprises (especially organized crime and drug trafficking). The biggest problem many of these syndicates have is hiding the mountains of cash they generate — unexplained wealth being among the best indicators of criminal activity, especially when it comes to the highest-ranking, most insulated crooks. To the extent these laws (and the Treasury Department's implementing regulations) have been beefed up significantly, a lot of that happened during the Clinton administration. (This Treasury Department publication lays out much of the history.)
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 6:50 PM
He really is a Marine. Funny Stuff. via Ace
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 2:47 PM
This whole Spitzer thing has me to thinking about temptation. Christian teaching is full of examples, warnings about it, and guidance against it.
What makes supposedly intelligent people throw everything away, even their careers, reputation, and family, for illicit desire?
And more importantly, what keeps most of us from giving in?
Want to share a story where you were tempted and didn't or did give in and why? Feel free to do so in the comments. You don't have to leave your name or e-mail.
Also, anyone out there stay with a cheating spouse? Why?
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 11:48 AM
Former Democratic vice presidential candidate and former New York Rep. Geraldine Ferarro (also a fundraiser for Hillary) told the Daily Breeze of Torrance, Calif.:
"If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position. And if he was a woman (of any color) he would not be in this position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is. And the country is caught up in the concept."
Please. If Hillary hadn't been married to Bill Clinton she wouldn't be in this position either. I wouldn't call her lucky though.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 7:29 AM
Washington DC: The Members of Florida's Democratic Delegation in the U.S. House of Representatives issued the following statement regarding the seating of Florida’s delegates at the DNC National Convention this August.
“We are committed to working with the DNC, the Florida State Democratic party, our Democratic leaders in Florida, and our two candidates to reach an expedited solution that ensures our 210 delegates are seated.
“Our House delegation is opposed to a mail-in campaign or any redo of any kind.”
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 7:25 AM
Remember when I said before that some Democrats seem to finally "get it" when it comes to the Clintons?
Well, add one more to the list. Former Senator Bill Bradley told The London Times this:
“The bigger the lie, the better the chance they think they’ve got. That’s been their whole approach,”
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 6:30 AM
ABC News is reporting that the Governor of New York, Eliot Spitzer prepared to resign yesterday but held back because lawyers advised him to keep the governorship as a bargaining chip to reach a deal in his case:
According to sources, Spitzer could face federal charges under money laundering statutes as a result of the way he allegedly manipulated his own funds in possible violation of bank secrecy laws to pay for his allegedly illegal activities -- sex with prostitutes.
Now there is talk of impeachment.
I wonder where a man of power who has so humiliated his family and disgraced his office, would get the idea that it was ok to not resign immediately and not put his family and party and state through such a tawdry mess?
Oh wait. Nevermind.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 6:18 AM
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
The former Clinton White House counsel, Greg Craig who is now supporting Barack Obama, has blasted Hillary for claiming to have foreign policy experience.
There is no doubt that Hillary Clinton played an important domestic policy role when she was First Lady. It is well known, for example, that she led the failed effort to pass universal health insurance. There is no reason to believe, however, that she was a key player in foreign policy at any time during the Clinton Administration. She did not sit in on National Security Council meetings. She did not have a security clearance. She did not attend meetings in the Situation Room. She did not manage any part of the national security bureaucracy, nor did she have her own national security staff. She did not do any heavy-lifting with foreign governments, whether they were friendly or not. She never managed a foreign policy crisis, and there is no evidence to suggest that she participated in the decision-making that occurred in connection with any such crisis. As far as the record shows, Senator Clinton never answered the phone either to make a decision on any pressing national security issue – not at 3 AM or at any other time of day.
Ouch. Ouch. Ouch. But he wasn't through. From NRO:
Craig writes that it is "a gross overstatement of the facts for her to claim even partial credit for bringing peace to Northern Ireland." Her claim to a role in bringing peace to Bosnia is also unfounded, Craig says. Her claim to have negotiated the flight of refugees from Kosovo "is not true," according to Craig, who quotes Bill Clinton's top envoy to the Balkans as saying, "I cannot recall any involvement by Senator Clinton in this issue." And on Rwanda, where Bill and Hillary Clinton have said that she pressed him to intervene with U.S. troops, Craig writes, "There is no evidence…to suggest that this ever happened." Finally, Craig attacks Hillary Clinton's claim that her 1995 speech about women's rights in China also qualifies as foreign policy experience. "It is strange that Senator Clinton would base her own foreign policy experience on a speech that she gave over a decade ago," Craig writes, "since she so frequently belittles Barack Obama’s speeches opposing the Iraq War six years ago."
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 11:25 AM
Hillary on the Spitzer mess:
"I don't have any comment on that," she said, "but I obviously am sending, you know, my best wishes and thoughts to the governor and to his family."
Best wishes and thoughts to the governor??? Why? Because he was putting his wife's health at risk by being with prostitutes? Because he has humiliated his wife and teenage daughters in front of a nation? Because he was caught in a crime?? Because he is a perv??
It seems to me that Hillary, more than anyone, would have sympathy for his family, but not him. Best wishes my a**.
Oh wait, Spitzer is a superdelegate.
Well, that explains it.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 7:02 AM
Monday, March 10, 2008
Ok, well not exactly. But he is.
ALBANY - Gov. Eliot Spitzer has informed his most senior administration officials that he had been involved in a prostitution ring, an administration official said this morning.
By "involved" they mean skanking it up with prostitutes. Just so you know.
Mr. Spitzer, a first term Democrat who pledged to bring ethics reform an end the often seamy ways of Albany, is married with three children.
It doesn't seem to matter how powerful, famous, or rich one is, common sense (and morals) go out the window when it comes to thinking with your *******.
Update: Jill alerted me to what the honorable Spitzer had to cancel this morning because of perv indictments. He was to speak to "family planning" activists:
As payback to his abortion industry supporters, Spitzer had supported “the Reproductive Health & Privacy Protection Act (RHAPP)” under the guise of “codifying Roe v. Wade.” It would:
* Allow non-doctors to perform abortions, including a dentist, a social worker, or a health care practitioner.
* Let girls as young as 12 obtain abortions throughout all 9 months of pregnancy without ever having to tell their parents.
* Force health practitioners or Catholic hospitals to lose their medical licenses if they don’t perform abortions since they would be denying women the “fundamental right” of an abortion.
Well, Mr. Spitzer, sometimes karma payback is hell. You deserve every bit of embarassment and ridicule that you receive. God help your children and wife. You are scum.
Nothing like people who honestly think it's ok for a 13 yr old to get a surgical procedure from a "practitioner" without her parents every knowing about it.
These people make me want to PUKE.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 2:01 PM
We believe history will judge that President Bush made his top priority the protection of the American people against a wily and ruthless enemy. Democrats, on the other hand, are treating our intelligence agencies as though they are the enemy. Whether interrogation or foreign surveillance is at issue, the Democrats’ priority has been to degrade our capacity to collect and connect the dots. Let the Democrats and the New York Times scoff: On the issue of national security, we’ll take President Bush’s legacy.
Read the whole thing.
We all just take for granted that we haven't suffered another attack. No school bombed and children dead in the school yard. No plane flown into a building, killing innocent people just trying to make a living. No suicide bomber in the middle of the food court at your local mall. We didn't have to see the carnage over and over on CNN or Fox News.
All that taken for granted. We didn't stay safe by accident. It was hard work, intelligence, and interrogations. If you don't believe that, then you aren't living in reality.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 11:12 AM
From Mona Charon at NRO:
I was just on the John Batchelor radio program. He says that Chuck Todd, NBC News political director, has heard from Hillary's people that she would accept the number two spot on the ticket.
Wow, the Queen will lower herself to accept the VP spot. How grand of her!
Don't you do it Obama! Don't!
I just have this strange feeling that this trial balloon is being sent over to the Obama camp to get an answer. If the answer is no, then all hell is about to break loose.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 6:37 AM
She has no idea how many times I defended her. How many right-leaning friends and relatives I battled with. How many times I played down her shady business deals and penchant for scandals -- whether it was Whitewater, Travelgate, Vince Foster, Cattle Futures, Web Hubbell, or Norman Hsu. She has no idea how frequently I dismissed her husband's serial adultery as an unfortunate trait of an otherwise brilliant man. For sixteen years, I was a proud soldier in the legion of "Clinton apologists" -- who believed that peace and prosperity were more important than regrettable personality traits.
And then she ran for president.
Many Clinton apologists like me — [have] watched Hillary's descent into pettiness and fear-mongering with the heartbreak of a child who grows up to realize that his beloved mother has been a terrible person all along.
Are the conservatives right about the Clintons? Will they do and say anything to get elected?
I don't know.
All I know is...I'm through apologizing.
Nice of you to see the light after all these years. Only problem? Too little, too late.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 6:34 AM
Sunday, March 09, 2008
From Marc Ambinder:
A Turkish-American Hill-Raiser who "who financed a film that depicted an American Jew trading in Iraqi body parts" has been cast out of the Clinton circle of trust, according to a report by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.
From First Read:
PAGE SIX February 11, 2008 -- SEN. Hillary Clinton has gotten cozy with a Turkish-born businessman whom some have described as anti-Semitic. Clinton's campaign Web site identifies Mehmet Celebi as one of her "HillRaisers" - someone who has raised at least $100,000 for her presidential bid. This despite Celebi's controversial producing credit on "Valley of the Wolves: Iraq" - a 2006 movie that depicted a Jewish doctor removing the vital organs of civilian prisoners to sell to wealthy transplant patients overseas. "In accordance with the old anti-Semitic canard, the movie portrays Jewish-American doctors as forcibly harvesting organs from Muslims to give them to Jews," noted Detroit lawyer and columnist Debbie Schlussel observes on her blog. Clinton spokesman Jay Carson didn't get back to us for comment.
The Clinton camp is saying they didn't know about the involvement in the film, yet it looks like they have been asked about it before.
Harvesting body parts from Muslims to sell to wealthy Jews? Sounds like SAW VI.
I always figured Hillary was Jigsaw.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 8:43 PM
Because he is getting filthy filthy filthy rich.
What’s an Emmy worth? If you’re former Vice-President Al Gore, it’s worth just north of $1 million a year and roughly another $48 million in stock. That’s a hefty sum for a guy who of late has traveled the globe as a goodwill ambassador for mankind, stressing the need for humanity to wake up to the dangers of global warming.
You've heard of "green collar" jobs? I think Gore has a "green tux" job.
Something about this deal just doesn't sit right with me. Gore isn't just taking piles of cash. According to the filing Gore, who is listed as executive chairman, and his CEO partner, lawyer-turned-entrepreneur Joel Hyatt, each loaned the company $1 million to get it started. They'll get that back in the IPO. But the two guys also collect hefty salaries for a company that hasn't shown a profit in three years -- taking down $491,677 apiece last year in cash, plus bonuses of $550,000 each for, in Gore's case, helping get the company new affiliate agreements, broadening exiting agreements, and putting together a management team. The two currently receive $600,000 a year in salary and are eligible for additional bonuses, according to the IPO filing.
Better and better:
What really sticks out to me, however, is that Gore and Hyatt, who started the company in 2002 [and jump-started it with a broken-down Newsworld International channel they bought for $70.9 million] will have the kind of hammer-lock control over the company decried by shareholder rights activists and many of the same unions that supported Gore for years.
The root of all evil and all that...if you let it.
Posted by RightwingSparkle at 8:05 PM