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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Goodbye 2009

With the ending of 2009 in a few days, we will see the end of year one of the age of Obama. While the first year was not an unmitigated disaster, I think it best described as a mitigated disaster. Here's what we got: 1) A stimulus bill that did not stimulate, but rather made payoffs to favored Obamacrat groups and wasted precious federal assets. 2) A healthcare "reform bill" that does not accomplish any of Obama's main objectives but still cost trillions of dollars and sets up 29 new federal agencies to control or monitor the health system with little or no benefit for the American people. Oh, and a bill that got passed despite heavy opposition from the American people themselves. 3) A House passed cap and trade bill that would cripple the economy to deal with a problem which may or may not be real. Anthropomorphic global warming may be a creature of phony science if the hacked e-mails from East Anglia are to be believed. Instead of having the courage to organize an immediate transparent review of the underlying science by the federal govenment, Obama played the ostrich and put his head in the sand. 4) A foreign policy long on apology and short on accomplishments. Probably the biggest accomplishment in the sphere of foreign policy in 2009 is that we are not yet in another war. 5) In Afghanistan, a dithering president who decides on his policy in March and orders an action plan to carry it out, only to rethink the objective for months and months once that plan is presented to him. Resolute? I think not. 6) In the War on Terrorism (sorry, but I still call it that), a purported leader who wants to ignore it and go back to the very unsuccessful methods used by Clinton. It is just a law enforcement matter, even if that leaves the country much less safe than before. And finally 7) a man who is so certain of his infallibility, that every time (and there were many) that bad news came forward in 2009, Obama managed to try to blame George W Bush for it. To say the least, it is getting a old. I doubt that the American people even hear it much anymore. Obama has managed to take his persona, probably his greatest asset, and transform himself from a smart, insightful, reasonable centrist who is beyond partisanship (remember "there are no red states or blue states on the United States?") and turn himself into an old fashioned ward politician who sees every problem as the fault of the other side. One who will not even speak to the opposition to see if they have any ideas worth using. One who will never say I accept responsibility for this event. One who will never use the truth whena lie would be more convenient for his narritive.

So, although none of items 1-7 are good, at least 2 and 3 have not yet passed and we are still here. Let's hope 2010 will be better. I feel reasonably confident that the high point will be in November, but time will tell.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

No, but they could run the Health care system

The news that a known terrorist was allowed on a flight to Detroit with a bomb strapped to his leg (thankfully one that did not work) is a wake up call to those who believe in the ability of the federal government to manage things. Clearly, a man who boarded the flight under his own name and who was on a terrorist watch list should not have been allowed to gain access, or, at least, he should have been thoroughly searched so that the bomb would have been uncovered. Instead, he just seems to have fallen through the cracks. The fact that the bomb maker was sufficiently inept so that there was no harm to anyone other than the terrorist himself from the blast (or the fizzle) of the explosive, does not mitigate the threat revealed when the airport security failed in its basic task. Had the bomber succeeded, there would have been hundreds killed (maybe thousands depending upon where the plane crashed.)

Right now, the same people who cannot control something as simple as a list of terrorists are angling to take over one-sixth of the US economy which is the healthcare system. When they prove themselves unable to control healthcare, there may be thousands dead. What will it take for the Obamacrats to realize that the government is just not up to this task?

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Health care passes the senate

I could not let today's "historic" vote in the Senate go without comment. first, isn't it strange that every time the Obamacrats pass something it gets called historic? Obama's presidency was historic. His Nobel peace prize was historic (or more aptly hysterical). The stimulus bill was historic. The cap and trade bill in the House was historic. You get the picture. In the media, however, unemployment is not historic; rather, it is the highest since 19__ -- and you fill in the blank just to show that it is not all that bad. The fraud by the global warming "scientists" was not historic, it was just normal science. The tea party movement was not historic as the first broad based political movement to spring up spontaneously in this country since the 1960's anti-war movement. No, the tea party goers were dangerous bigots motivated by racism and ... Again, you get the picture. I think it is time for the media to retire the word "historic". Otherwise, it will come to mean nothing.

Second, I find it disgusting that the bill passed on a party line vote. It tells me that the goal of the legislation was not to do something good for the country. Instead, the bill is designed to help the Obamacrats. It cannot be that 60 Obamacrats disagree with 40 Republicans completely on the issues here. Every other major new program in history has been passed with some support from both parties, usually a large amount of such support. Every other program like this has been passed with a great deal of public support. there has never been a program passed with unanimous opposition from the minority party and a large majority of the American people opposing the bill as well. Maybe that is why the bill is historic.

One thing is certain. The Obamacrats have shown that they do not care what the American people think. Nor do they care what is good for the country. Nor do they have principles upon which they rely -- after all, look at all the so-called moderates who sold out for a few pieces of silver. I hasten to add that Joe Lieberman, at least, did hold out for changes in policy positions. He did not oppose the bill for personal gain like Ben Nelson or Blanche Lincoln (not to mention Mary Landrieu). Still, the overarching description of the Obamacrats must now be greedy, uncaring, unpatriotic and self absorbed. And the good thing is that the American people have been there to see this truth become self evident.

If the country is lucky, this will be the end of Democrats in power for many decades to come. Who knows, maybe the Whig party will make a comeback.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Sliding lower and lower

President Obama's poll number hit a new low in the daily Rasmussen job approval poll today both in total numbers and among those who either strongly approve or strongly disapprove. The difference between strong approval and strong disapproval is now -21%. this is much higher than it has ever been. I suppose that the medical hope and change is not proving so popular among the American voters. Overall, Obama's approval numbers are now at 44% approval and 56% disapproval. These numbers are nowhere near the lows achieved by George Bush, but they are still disasterously low for a President. If these numbers do not change much, Obama's days as a political force will soon come to an end.

The amazing thing is that no one on the Obamacrat side seems to understand what is happening. The Obamacrats think that words alone will change things. They are stuck in permanent campaign mode. After all, during the campaign, Obama moved people with his speeches. Now, however, he is president and actually has to perform. This is where his problem comes in. He still gives a nice speech, but he is in danger of being totally blotted out by the public. Why listen to yet another Obama speech when he still does nothing good? Why care what obama says when more and more people are unemployed. Didn't he promise an 8% maximum for unemployment if only the emergency stimulus bill were passed? The administration cannot even spend the stimullus money or--even worse--keep track of the portion that has been spent. And unemployment remains over 10%.

No one knows what 2010 will bring. The truth, however, is that unless there is a marked change in direction in the actions of the administration, not just the words of the persident, 2010 will surely bring big gains for the GOP.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Himes is a deficit hawk

The vote on the new so-called jobs bill that the House passed this week was remarkable in that it included a no vote by congressman Jim Himes. Apparently Himes was one of those new Congressmen who were allowed to vote no in the hope that they could use the vote to help keep their seats. Of course, the bill still passed by a close margin. The bogus claim that shovel ready projects would create jobs was trotted out even though about three quarters of the money for shovel ready projects under the first stimulus bill remains unspent. In truth, the bill is really a payoff to the teachers' unions so that teachers will not have to share in the current economic downturn through cutbacks or layoffs.

Himes must be a moron if he thinks that the district will fall for this ploy. First he voted for the main stimulus bill. Then he voted for cap and trade. Then he voted for the monstrosity of a healthcare bill that passed the House. He also voted for all the spending that has pushed the deficit to record highs and then he voted to raise the debt ceiling to accomodate the news profligate spending. Suddenly, he votes against a payoff to the teachers' unions and he is a deficit hawk. Himes should know this: he already lost reelection in 2010. This is too little too late.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Shovel ready jobs -- what are the shovels for?

Last night the House of Representatives approved a bill for $155 billion in additional funding that was described as being for shovel ready jobs and also funding for states and localities to prevent the layoffs of teachers and other public workers. I think that the shovels are for the BS. Remember the stimulus package and all the shovel ready jobs that were supposed to be funded? Well we have yet to see even half of that money get spent. There were not enough shovel ready jobs to get funded under that law. So now the house passes a bill to help the teachers union avoid necessary pay cuts and streamlining of school budgets and they trot out the claim once again that it is for shovel ready jobs. It is hard to imagine that anyone in Washington believes the US public to be so stupid that they will not understand what is happening. Indeed, the fact that they passed this payoff at a time when it will get minimum coverage in the news cycle shows that Pelosi and her cronies actually do understand that the more people hear of this bill the less they will like it.

It will be fun to see how Obamacrats in the Senate spin this pile of garbage. I am sure it will be a "compassionate" payoff. I am also sure that bills like this will play well with the Obamacrats new concentration on "deficit reduction". The Obamacrats spending to control the deficit reminds me of the old Vietnam era adage that it is like screwing for virginity.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Health care or utter Nonsense

As I am writing this, there is a supposed compromise in the Senate that will allow a bill with no public option or medicare buy-in to pass with the required 60 votes. Of course, there was a supposed compromise with the medicare buy-in as part of the legislation that Harry Reid announced would pass just days ago. That fell apart quickly. Senator Burris of Illinois has now announced that he will not vote for a bill that does not accomplish the ends of the public option. Indeed, it seems that the next likely thing will be Chris Dodd announcing that he will not vote for the bill unless Obama arranges a new mortgage for Dodd for a 30 year fixed rate of 1% or lower. And with all of the brouhaha on Capitol Hill, the only clear losers are the legislative process and the American people. Why clear losers? Because as of this moment no one other than maybe Harry Reid knows what is in the bill. We are watching the spectacle of United States Senators signing on to pass a bill whose contents are unknown to them. The process is once again revealed to be basically nothing but BS, like the commitment to transparency made by Obama. And we get a bill that is not thought out, but rather one that is just passed so that they can say they did something.

Isn't it time that the American people elected folks to the Senate who took their jobs seriously? This is not some club that exists for photo ops and public relations. These people are supposed to make the hard choices after studying the problems and weighing the alternatives.

Anyone who reads this blog knows that I am no fan of the Obamacrats. Two months ago I would be hard pressed to think of a reason to like them less than I did then. Amazingly, their conduct with regard to health care has managed to lower my opinon of them. These are incompetant fools. Unfortunately, we gave them the power to do great damage to the country.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

An incredible switch

Today's Rasmussen poll on Obama's job performance contains a really amazing result. Every day since Obama became president, Rasmussen has run a tracking poll regarding the public's perception of Obama's Job approval. On his first day in office, Mr. O had 44% of the public who rated his performance as excellant and 16% who said it was poor. These are the strong partisans. Today, these numbers have switched so that 42% now rate his performance as poor and only 23% rate his performance as excellant.

These numbers are important since they show the people who are most fired up about the president and therefore those who are most likely to vote in the elections in 2010. They are amazing numbers sinced there are more than 23% of the people who would normally be considered Democrats. Indeed, the 23% figure means that a large group of Dems no longer give Obama an excellant rating, an ominous sign for the party in 2010.

Obviously, a one day result means next to nothing for the results next November. It is important to remember, however, that trends begin with a single day.

Friday, December 11, 2009

what a difference a year makes

Last year at this time, the Obamacrats were on top of the world and the media was writing the obituary of the GOP. Conservatism was dead, or so we were told. The country wanted big government and was willing to pay for them -- or so we were told. The Republicans were just a regional permanenet minority party that would waste away as demographic trends moved against them.

Now just one year later, everything has reversed. The GOP won big in last November's elections. The wins were not just in the the Southern regional base announced by the media, but also in places like New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania that the GOP has permanently lost - or so we were told. The current polls show the likelihood of major Republican gains in November. True, these gains are nearly all in the Southern regional base announced by the media: those Obamacrats in biggest danger of losing come from Dixie states like Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Illinois, Nevada and North Dakota. Oh wait! These are not southern states. Maybe they are planning to move.

The point is that the Obamacrats have overinterpreted their mandate. What they won was a mandate for not beinig George Bush. It was not a vote for big government. It was not a vote for national healthcare. It was not a vote for new taxes to fight the possibility that man is causing global warming. Indeed, it was a vote to get someone who would focus on getting the economy back on track and lowering unemployment.

What the Obamacrats have done is to throw away their political capital on issues that most people do not care about. Obama has managed to look weak, act weak, and even hurt himself in foreign affairs when he does the right thing. The apology tours have not helped here at home or with those abroad. The failures to support the protesters in Iran or the democrats in Honduras have also hurt, just like the idiocy of injecting the settlement issue into the Arab Israeli peace process (sorry to use the wrods Arab-israeli and peace proces in the same sentence. The decision to send more troops to Afghanistan, while correct in my opinion, was accompanied by confusion as to the end date of the commitment and by a major show of dithering for months on what to do. The answer was easy to reach; yet, Obama took over 100 days to come to the only logical conclusion.

At home, Obama has manged to mess up the things he touched and really mess up the things he tried. Thus, he let Pelosi and friends write a stimulus bill that he very little stimulus in it. Then he tried to sell the bill by promising that it would keep unemployment under 8% with a great focus on shovel ready projects, etc. In truth, the only shovel needed for the stimulus bill was the one to shovel away the BS that came out in support of its passage. As a result, the US has spent nearly three quarters of a trillion dollars in support of various Obamacrat interest groups and unemployment broke through 10%. Indeed, last month Obama hailed the decline in the rate to 10% even though the decline was due not to more jobs (the was a net reduction in jobs) but rather to more people just leaving the workforce for good since there were no jobs available.

Cap and trade is another issue where Obama has made a mess. Again, Obama did not write the bill but left it to Congressmen like the wacky Waxman to decide what the bill should contain. Obama's failure to lead on this issue let the bill become another christmas tree of nonsensical plans to reduce greenhouse gases by things like farm subsidies and low income housing. If the conection to global warming is not apparent, that is because there is no connection. Now, with the discovery that the science behing the theory that man-made global warming exists may have been phony, obama has not wavered for a moment. Imagine if he had come forward and announced a US effort to put together the true climate data. Instead he responded in the way that would make the ever green (for the money he is scamming) Al Gore proud. Obama simply ignored the whole controversy.

Then there are Obama's strong commitments like ending don't ask don't tell, closing Gitmo, etc. Those have not gone as planned.

Finally, there is healthcare. Obama and his cronies are still pushing ahead with a plan which changes daily. The public opposes the effort according to the poll data, but that makes no difference to the Great Barack.

My guess is that the obamacrats have signed there own death warrants. come next November the GOP will be truly regional, but the region will be the entire USA. I still think that it is too much to ask for the GOP to take back Congress, but the days of unbridled Obamacrat power will be over.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Senate votes down anti abortion language

The Senate vote to kill the amendment offered by Senator Nelson of Nebraska which would continue the ban of federal funding for abortions may be the last straw in the debate of the healthcare bill. Nelson has said he will not support hte bill without the antiabortion language. Of course, he is hedging a bit now that he has lost. Still, if he is true to his word and opposes the bill, nothing can pass without one of the Maine Republican senators. That means there cannot be a public option in the bill. It also means that the supposed compromise to pass the bill with no public option but with a big increase in the coverage of medicare and medicaid also will not pass. there may be some increase in medicare coverage, maybe to age 60, but that is about it. I guess that the goal is to see how fast medicare can be bankrupted. After all, the Democrats bill would take half a trillion dollars out of medicare but then would increase those covered by the plan by about 65%. sounds like a total failure to me.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Harry Reid -- to call him a jerk does not do it justice

The latest in the long line of stupidity and offensiveness that seems to regularly emanate from the mouth of Harry Reid is today's bon mot in which he compares opponents of his healthcare bill to those who supported slavery. I was wondering when we were going to get the racism card played in the healthcare debate. and now it is here. Those evil Republicans (who of course only have 40% of the seats) are blocking the Democrats with 60% from passing this great bill. What BS! The truth is that the public does not support anything like the Reid bill. As support levels for the bill continue to fall (along with Obama's approval ratings and the Democrats chances of retaining control of Congress), Reid is, as usual, blaming all of his shortcomings on the other side. there has been no Republican input whatsoever into the current Senate bill. Harry and friends wrote the bill behind locked doors and kept all Republicans out. The bill is a christmas tree including presents of billions of dollars for Democrat senators whose votes are needed, and even with all the pork, Reid cannot find 60 votes to keep the bill afloat. I think we are seeing the end game in which Reid prepares for defeat which he wants to blame on the Republicans. He might do better to simply acknowledge that the bill does not have public support and table it for now.

In truth, the only good coming from the healthcare debate right now is that it continues to sink Reids approval numbers in Nevada. He is at best a 50-50 shot to be reelected. Reid's defeat would be one of the best possible consequences of a healthcare fiasco.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Chris shays campaign manager indicted

A friend of mine just sent me the link to the article on the arrest of Chris shays campaign manager for stealing a quarter of a million dollars from the campaign. To say the least, the campaign manager Michael Sohn is a slime if he did this. Faithin government is low enough right now. there is no need to add the theft of campaign dcontributions to the list. Given the high ethical standards set by Shays while in office, it is even more reprehensible that this would happen.

I do wonder how the campaign manager thought he could get away with this. In a campaign for congress it is hard to overlook the loss of $250,000 especially with all of the forms that have to be filed.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

polls of interest

In recent days, there have been a number of interesting polls. Senator Lincoln of Arkansas is well behind all of her potential challengers. Will this motivate her to vate against the healthcare bill (which is extremely unpoplular in Arkansas)? Mike Caslte is leading Beau Biden by a bunch in Delaware. Harry Reid is behind all opponents in Nevada. Chris Dodd is way behind in Connecticut. the generic congressional vote is swinging strongly towards the republicans. Obama's job approval numbers are at all time lows with those which poll likely voters (as opposed to all adults) showing a majority disapproving of his performance.

What does all this (and more ) mean? In truth, the answer is "not much!" Still, the Obamacrats in Washington must be getting indigestion watching their numbers fall lower and lower as the Great leader takes them over the edge of the cliff. My guess is that passing healthcare would be the end of the democratic majority for quite some time.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Unemployment figures

The numbers are in for November unemployment based upon the payroll companies. They show a loss of 169,000 jobs for the month. This is worse than the 155,000 expected by the consensus of economists, but, more important, they continue the major job losses of the last year.

Despite the continuing losses, the numbers got portrayed in the media as an improvement in the economy. After all, we lost fewer jobs in November than in October. Isn't it time for the numbers of jobs to start going up? Every month, new people join the job market and fewer jobs exist. Every month it gets harder and harder to find a new job. Every month we hear about how things are getting better and about all the jobs created or saved by the stimulus. The truth is that there is no credible evidence that any jobs were created by the stimulus outside the government. There is also no proof that any jobs were saved. so for three quarters of a trillion dollars, Obama created about 10000 jobs. What a fiasco!