Saturday, October 29, 2011

Asian Americans most bullied in US schools: study

Asian Americans endure far more bullying at US schools than members of other ethnic groups, with teenagers of the community three times as likely to face taunts on the Internet, new data shows.

Policymakers see a range of reasons for the harassment, including language barriers faced by some Asian American students and a spike in racial abuse following the September 11, 2001 attacks against children perceived as Muslim.

"This data is absolutely unacceptable and it must change. Our children have to be able to go to school free of fear," US Education Secretary Arne Duncan said Friday during a forum at the Center for American Progress think-tank.

The research, to be released on Saturday, found that 54 percent of Asian American teenagers said they were bullied in the classroom, sharply above the 31.3 percent of whites who reported being picked on.

The figure was 38.4 percent for African Americans and 34.3 percent for Hispanics, a government researcher involved in the data analysis told AFP. He requested anonymity because the data has not been made public.

The disparity was even more striking for cyber-bullying.

Some 62 percent of Asian Americans reported online harassment once or twice a month, compared with 18.1 percent of whites. The researcher said more study was needed on why the problem is so severe among Asian Americans.

The data comes from a 2009 survey supported by the US Justice Department and Education Department which interviewed some 6,500 students from ages 12 to 18. Asian Americans are generally defined as tracing ancestry to East Asia, the Indian subcontinent or the South Pacific.

Asian Americans most bullied in US schools: study

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Ron Paul’s Economic Plan: Cut 5 Cabinet Agencies, Cut Taxes, Cut President’s Pay - Washington Wire - WSJ

Mr. Paul’s “Restore America” plan calls for a drastically reduced federal government to help spur American business — a familiar theme for the Texas Republican and many of the GOP White House hopefuls. But unlike some of his Republican rivals who have released economic plans, the libertarian congressman mostly avoids the weeds of tax and trade policy, according to excerpts.

But Mr. Paul does get specific when he calls for a 10% reduction in the federal work force, while pledging to limit his presidential salary to $39,336, which his campaign says is “approximately equal to the median personal income of the American worker.” The current pay rate for commander in chief is $400,000 a year.

The Paul plan would also lower the corporate tax rate to 15% from 35%, though it is silent on personal income tax rates, which Mr. Paul would like to abolish. The congressman would end taxes on personal savings and extend “all Bush tax cuts.”

He would also allow U.S. firms to repatriate capital without additional taxes. Some lawmakers have recently proposed such legislation as a way to spur job growth. Its critics argue that a tax holiday for companies with money abroad has not historically led to domestic investment.

But the plan, at its heart, is libertarian. While promising to cut $1 trillion in spending during his first year, Mr. Paul would eliminate the Departments of Education, Commerce, Energy, Interior and Housing and Urban Development. When former Massachusetts Gov. MItt Romney unveiled his economic plan last month, he said he would submit legislation to reduce nonsecurity, discretionary spending by $20 billion.

Ron Paul’s Economic Plan: Cut 5 Cabinet Agencies, Cut Taxes, Cut President’s Pay - Washington Wire - WSJ

Friday, October 14, 2011

News from The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Obama administration Friday pulled the plug on a major program in the president's signature health overhaul law - a long-term care insurance plan dogged from the beginning by doubts over its financial solvency.

Targeted by congressional Republicans for repeal, the program became the first casualty in the political and policy wars over the health care law. It had been expected to launch in 2013.

"This is a victory for the American taxpayer and future generations," said Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., spearheading opposition in the Senate. "The administration is finally admitting (the long-term care plan) is unsustainable and cannot be implemented."

News from The Associated Press

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Tea Party Invades Occupy D.C. to Defend Capitalism | Video |

What happens when the Tea Party invades the seemingly never-ending “Occupy” protest movement? Until now, this question has been left to the whims of the imagination. But over the weekend, Accuracy in Media, Let Freedom Ring and Young America’s Foundation joined forces to infiltrate ”Occupy D.C.”

As you can imagine, the results are quite hilarious, as the Tea Party counter-protesters state their love for capitalism, holding signs that read, “Taxed Enough Already” and “Unions Destroy Jobs,” among others. The patriotic young men, who are predictably met with anger, hand out Constitutions to the “Occupiers,” while defending capitalism (Meredith Jessup covered this on the blog as well).

In the video, you’ll hear an Occupy D.C. protester call one of the Tea Partiers an “idiot.“ Another man calls one of the supporters of capitalism a ”candy a**.” And yet another individual who is visibly agitated says, “I‘m gonna turn away because I don’t turn the other cheek. You push me and you’re gonna have a problem.”

Some of the other responses, though, are even more bizarre: “Our troops are the terrorists” and “You and your corporate cronies…get the f**k out of my country” are two odd statements to look out for.

Accuracy in Media described the mission as follows: “To see what happens when three peaceful fans of capitalism, guns and our military take to the streets.”

Watch the insanity unfold, below (caution: language):

Tea Party Invades Occupy D.C. to Defend Capitalism | Video |

Monday, October 10, 2011

The American Spectator : Andrew Jackson: Tea Party President

But, if Roosevelt is no proper model, who among past presidents should Republicans turn to for lessons and guidance? Who is the Tea Party progenitor? Who offers the insight, outlook, and rhetoric for today's GOP?

The answer is Andrew Jackson, who would have slapped down the notion of American greatness conservatism with utter contempt because he believed the country's greatness emanated from its people, not its government. Jackson was the great conservative populist of American history, and his story bears study at a time when the country seems receptive to a well-crafted brand of conservative populism.

Indeed, conservative populism is the essence of the Tea Party -- opposed to big, intrusive government; angry about the corporate bailouts of the late Bush and early Obama administrations; fearful of the consequences of fiscal incontinence; suspicious of governmental favoritism; wary of excessive global ambition.

These concerns and fears were Jackson's concerns and fears 180 years ago when he became president, and his greatest legacy is his constant warning that governmental encroachments would lead to precisely the kinds of problems that are today besieging the country -- and roiling the Tea Party. That legacy deserves attention.

The American Spectator : Andrew Jackson: Tea Party President

George Reisman's Blog on Economics, Politics, Society, and Culture: WHERE PROFIT COMES FROM

This theory of profit/interest has major implications for the understanding of capital accumulation, the determination of real wages and the general standard of living, taxation, inflation/deflation, and the business cycle. It also provides the basis for the overthrow of virtually all aspects of Keynesianism and its system of national income accounting, along with an equally fundamental and thorough refutation of Marxism and the exploitation theory.

George Reisman's Blog on Economics, Politics, Society, and Culture: WHERE PROFIT COMES FROM

Monday, October 3, 2011

BET's Robert Johnson To Obama: Stop Attacking The Wealthy | RealClearPolitics

BET founder Robert Johnson on the "FOX News Sunday" program: "Well, I think the president has to recalibrate his message. You don't get people to like you by attacking them or demeaning their success. You know, I grew up in a family of 10 kids, first one to go to college, and I've earned my success. I've earned my right to fly private if I choose to do so.

"And by attacking me it is not going to convince me that I should take a bigger hit because I happen to be wealthy. You know, it is the old -- I think Ted and Fred and I we both sort of take the old Ethel Merman approach to life. I've tried poor and I tried rich and I like rich better. It doesn't mean that I am a bad guy.

"I didn't go in to business to create a public policy success for either party, Republican or Democrat. I went in business to create jobs and opportunity, create opportunity, create value for myself and my investors. And that's what the president should be praising, not demagoguing us simply because Warren Buffet says he pays more than his secretary. He should pay the secretary more and she will pay more."

BET's Robert Johnson To Obama: Stop Attacking The Wealthy | RealClearPolitics

Thursday, September 29, 2011

The American Spectator : The Obama Code

"When there is a gap between one's real and one's declared aims, one turns, as it were instinctively, to long words and exhausted idioms, like a cuttlefish squirting out ink." -- George Orwell, "Politics and the English language"

Last weekend, President Obama gave a speech to the Congressional Black Caucus. It would have passed largely unnoticed into the giant, gaseous cloud of accumulated Obama speeches that hangs somewhere above Washington had it not been for an Associated Press reporter dutifully doing his job.

Reporter Mark Smith quoted the President this way:

"Take off your bedroom slippers. Put on your marching shoes," he said, his voice rising as applause and cheers mounted. "Shake it off. Stop complainin'. Stop grumblin'. Stop cryin'. We are going to press on. We have work to do."

Though that is precisely what the president said, it differed from the official White House transcript, which included the three missing g's. Smith, sensing something important not in the president's words, but in the way he delivered them, thought it important not to change them. For that simple application of journalistic integrity, he was called a racist.

On Chris Hayes' MSNBC show, author and, unbelievably, professor of journalism Karen Hunter said the AP story was "inherently racist." She explained, "I teach a journalism class, and I tell my students to fix people's grammar, because you don't want them to sound ignorant. For them to do that, it's code, and I don't like it."

At this point it might be worth noting that in 2009 Hunter said, also on MSNBC, that people who show disrespect to the president are racist. For a professor, she certainly has issues with logic. Hunter, it would seem, is an expert at silencing dissent by alleging racism.

Why, though, would accurately quoting the president be racist? Because, Hunter believes, not cleaning up the president's grammar makes him "sound ignorant." Yet did the president himself not utter the words that way -- on purpose?

Anyone who has watched Obama speeches -- which would be anyone who has flipped on an American television set at any random time in the past three years -- knows that Obama does not always drop his g's. He made a conscious decision to do so when speaking before the Congressional Black Caucus. Whatever for?

The American Spectator : The Obama Code

Friday, September 23, 2011

The American Spectator : His Biggest Big Lies

If you work hard, play by the rules, save your money, create jobs, and make a success out of yourself, President Obama and the Democrat party will plunder everything you have worked so hard for, because in their view that is only fair.

That is the meaning of the policies President Obama is espousing as he campaigns for re-election around the country this week. As Mark Steyn has explained, there is no bill yet that the President is demanding Congress pass, it won't create any jobs, and there is no money to pay for it. It is just a traveling road show, and we need to start to hold accountable our relatives, friends and neighbors who would fall for it, and thereby darkly threaten the entire future of America.

The American Spectator : His Biggest Big Lies

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Obama’s Solar Scandal - Michael Barone - National Review Online

One factor favoring President Obama’s reelection, according to a recent article by political scientist Alan Lichtman, is the absence of scandal in his administration.

Lichtman may have spoken too soon.

The reason can be encapsulated in a single word: Solyndra.

That’s the name of a company that manufactured solar panels in Fremont, Calif. (which voted 71 percent for Obama in 2008). It was the first company to receive a loan guarantee from the Department of Energy as part of the 2009 stimulus package. This wasn’t small potatoes. The loan guarantee was for $535 million.

It was, Vice President Biden said, “exactly what the Recovery Act was all about.” Energy Secretary Steven Chu, a Nobel Prize winner, said it would help “spark a new revolution that will put Americans to work.” It was part of the Obama administration’s program to create so-called green jobs, which we were told were the key to future economic growth.

Obama’s Solar Scandal - Michael Barone - National Review Online

Nobel Prize-Winning Physicist Resigns Over Global Warming | Fox News

Dr. Ivar Giaever, a former professor with Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and the 1973 winner of the Nobel Prize in physics, abruptly announced his resignation Tuesday, Sept. 13, from the premier physics society in disgust over its officially stated policy that "global warming is occurring."

The official position of the American Physical Society (APS) supports the theory that man's actions have inexorably led to the warming of the planet, through increased emissions of carbon dioxide.

Giaever does not agree -- and put it bluntly and succinctly in the subject line of his email, reprinted at Climate Depot, a website devoted to debunking the theory of man-made climate change.

"I resign from APS," Giaever wrote.

Giaever was cooled to the statement on warming theory by a line claiming that "the evidence is incontrovertible."

"In the APS it is ok to discuss whether the mass of the proton changes over time and how a multi-universe behaves, but the evidence of global warming is incontrovertible?" he wrote in an email to Kate Kirby, executive officer of the physics society.

"The claim … is that the temperature has changed from ~288.0 to ~288.8 degree Kelvin in about 150 years, which (if true) means to me is that the temperature has been amazingly stable, and both human health and happiness have definitely improved in this 'warming' period," his email message said.

A spokesman for the APS confirmed to that the Nobel Laureate had declined to pay his annual dues in the society and had resigned. He also noted that the society had no plans to revise its statement.

The use of the word "incontrovertible" had already caused debate within the group, so much so that an addendum was added to the statement discussing its use in April, 2010.

"The word 'incontrovertible' ... is rarely used in science because by its very nature, science questions prevailing ideas. The observational data indicate a global surface warming of 0.74 °C (+/- 0.18 °C) since the late 19th century."

Giaever earned his Nobel for his experimental discoveries regarding tunneling phenomena in superconductors. He has since become a vocal dissenter from the alleged “consensus” regarding man-made climate fears, Climate Depot reported, noting that he was one of more than 100 co-signer of a 2009 letter to President Obama critical of his position on climate change.

Nobel Prize-Winning Physicist Resigns Over Global Warming | Fox News

Saturday, September 10, 2011

The American Spectator : Letter to a Liberal Friend

Letter to a Liberal Friend

I went to one of those prestigious Eastern colleges that turn out the bureaucrats who populate President Obama's administration so I have an unusual perspective on his supporters. I know these people very well, yet I can't figure out their motivation.

As class secretary, I spend quite a bit of time gathering news for the Alumni Notes. When I call to chat, nearly all my former classmates are staunchly liberal, enraged at the Tea Party and alarmed at the possibility that President Obama may not be re-elected. This is kind of strange. Forty years ago, many of these people were football jocks or party animals who had very little concern for politics. Yet they have someone "matured" into staunch liberals. All this was summed up by one alumnus who wrote in the class notes a few years ago, "I continue to prosper while moving rapidly toward the angry left."

One of the classmates I contacted this year is a Washington tort lawyer. He told me how he recently represented an entrepreneur who got a permit from the Department of Interior to develop a coal mine in Tennessee, spent $3 million developing infrastructure, and was then told by the bureaucrats that they had changed their mind -- the mine was too close to a national forest.

"I won a $300 million settlement before a federal administrative judge, working on contingency," he said. "But when it went up to the appeals level, the three-judge panel threw it out. They said the government can do anything it wants. It makes me sick."

"Isn't that the sort of thing the Tea Party is complaining about?" I asked.

"Tea Party!" He was astounded. "You're not one of those Tea Party people, are you? They're all crazy."

Another class member is now a prominent professor at the University of Wisconsin. I asked him what it was like in Madison during last summer's demonstrations and he said, "Heck, I was in them. We've got an absolutely insane governor in this state, Governor Walker. The man is crazy. He wants to gut the entire system. We were out there to stop him."

In the next breath was telling me about his second home in the Caribbean. "We have a little compound down there," he said. "We got hit by a hurricane ten years ago and I had to go down to rebuild the place. There are only about 100 people on the island so we all helped each other out."

Somehow the incongruity of an affluent college professor with a hideaway home in the Caribbean who is also a member of the oppressed working masses who must demonstrate against an insane governor who is foolish enough to be upset because his state is going bankrupt did not register in his head.

I've had several conversations with liberals lately and they have one simple explanation for the President's current troubles -- "racism." "What's really going on is these Tea Party people can't stand the idea of being ruled by a black man, don't you think that's it?" Nine percent unemployment, 20 million people out of work, a 27-year-high in unemployment among African-Americans -- if George Bush were President, he would be being charged with racism.

So I've composed a letter to my liberal friends who are beginning to realize that Obama may be a one-term President. We've seen this before -- Jimmy Carter and George H.W. Bush both tripped over the economy and failed to get re-elected. Nobody argued it was because Carter was a Southern Baptist or Bush was Skull-and-Bones. So why should it be hard to fathom that 43rd President might face the same experience?

The American Spectator : Letter to a Liberal Friend

Articles: The Continuing Disgrace of U.S. Education

September 10, 2011

The Continuing Disgrace of U.S. Education

By Gary Jason

If Americans dared to hope that their K-12 educational system might be improving, several new articles will bring the poor souls back to reality.

The first is a piece by Paul Peterson of the Harvard Program on Educational Policy and Governance. Peterson notes that on the most recent national test results, only a risible 32% of American 8th-graders scored "proficient" in math. By coincidence, on the international PISA tests, taken by students from 65 countries and administered by the OECD, our students' scores are at 32nd place.

How do the other developed nations stack up? In six countries (Canada, Finland, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, and Switzerland), at least 50% of the 8th-graders score proficient in math. Many other nations which don't score that high still outscore us, including Germany (45%), Australia (44%), and France (39%).

Most worrisome is the fact that 75% of Shanghai students scored proficient in math. As we compete with China for high-tech industry, the ability of its educational system to teach Chinese kids math will give the country an ever-increasing competitive edge, unless ours closes the gap.

Within our country, there are wide discrepancies in math proficiency. Massachusetts has the high average of 51%, with only five other states scoring above 40%. (These are Kansas, Minnesota, New Jersey, North Dakota, and Vermont).

Depressingly, some of the richest states score lowest in math proficiency, with New York at 30%, Michigan at 29%, Florida at 27%, and my home state of California at a pathetic 24%.

Articles: The Continuing Disgrace of U.S. Education

Blog: PBS alters transcript to hide Obama gaffe

PBS alters transcript to hide Obama gaffe

Timothy Birdnow

Barack Obama has gone to Congress asking for more money to spend. The President, in a rambling and tedious exercise mixing blame with demands, made quite a few dubious statements in laying out the case for Congress to vote for the plan which as yet does not exist. Much like Obamacare, Congress must ultimately vote for the bill to know what is in it.

At one point Mr. Obama made a major gaffe; he identified Abraham Lincoln as the founder of the Republican Party.

Lincoln did not join the Republicans until 1856, over two years after the party was founded. The first Republican convention was held in Ripon, Wisconsin in 1854.

Such a gaffe would have brought huge amounts of ridicule and derision on George W. Bush, but in the case of Obama the media yawned.

Actually, they did more than yawn; government-funded PBS has altered the transcript of the President's speech, removing the offending comment.

Blog: PBS alters transcript to hide Obama gaffe

Monday, August 29, 2011

The American Spectator : Lew's Lewd Letter

"Obama Takes Charge at Hurricane Command Center" blared the AFP headline on Saturday. But it was just another disappointment for Obama. By the time the over-hyped hurricane Irene blew into town, there wasn't anything for Obama to take charge of.

It could have been a big psychological moment for Obama's campaign but it was just another let down for the man. The stock markets seemed to respond better to the East Coast earthquake last week than to Barry's recent speeches.

But Barry O'bama really has the luck of the Irish. With every sentient American worried about our still-sinking economy, we've been diverted from thinking about it all summer.

Gaddafi's fall, Irene's sweep of the not-so-earthquake-shattered East Coast, and now Dick Cheney's memoir have taken turns dominating the news. Maureen Dowd's review of Cheney's book seemed to say that last week's earthquake and the Irene minicane were the result of Voldemort-Cheney casting another evil spell on Washington, D.C.

Meanwhile Obama vacationed at Martha's Vineyard, contemplating how he would announce his new plan to revive the economy and restore confidence in the financial markets. The liberal media has been bewailing the fact that Obama has no announced theme for his 2012 campaign. One sluggo even moaned that the campaign website had not a single slogan on it. But there soon will be slogans aplenty because the post-vacation Big Speech has been hyped almost as much as Irene. Obama has a lot riding on it.

The problem he faces is that neither he nor anyone on his team can bring themselves to consider that reducing the size and scope of government is the only way to restore confidence in our economy among the financial markets, investors, and voters.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The American Spectator : If Only Obama Would Abdicate

This boringly ineffective would-be demagogue in the Oval Office keeps trotting out the same tired, petty, counterfactual lines in every one of his pompous, detached-from-reality speeches -- and he did so again in his Saturday radio address. So shopworn is his refrain, and so counterproductive are his policies (both enacted and proposed), that the markets tank just about every time he opens his mouth, and the economy suffers with each minute he continues to occupy the White House. His resignation from office, in abject embarrassment at his failures, would be a great first step toward economic recovery, not to mention a balm to the souls of tens of millions of Americans sick of his condescension, his prevarications, and his incompetence.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Explaining Japan's Recession - Benjamin Powell - Mises Daily

One prominent New Keynesian, Paul Krugman, recently recognized that,
Japan's postal savings system which channels money into public works projects that have little if any social payoff, is monumentally inefficient; so is the practice of rolling over the debts of companies that will never regain profitability and hence keeping capital employed producing what nobody wants. (Krugman 2001)
Krugman argues that this is not a problem as long as Japan is not producing at capacity. He says that to assert otherwise is erroneous because the focus on supply ignores the real problem: inadequate demand. Japan's problem, however, is not inadequate aggregate demand but a structure of production that does not meet consumers' particular demands. Producing things that nobody wants and propping up malinvestments cannot possibly help any economy. This policy is equivalent to the old Keynesian depression nostrum of paying people to dig holes and fill them. Neither policy will revive the economy because neither forces businesses to realign their structures of production to match consumer demands.
Krugman offers another policy solution. Because New Keynesians do not strictly prefer fiscal policy over monetary policy, Krugman recommends "unconventional monetary expansion, with the Bank of Japan buying dollars, euros, and long-term government bonds; it also involves accepting and indeed promoting mild inflation and a weak yen. I could explain why this would probably work, but what's the point? It's not about to happen" (Krugman 2001). Krugman should not think that this could not happen, because it is similar to what occurred from mid-1997 to mid-1998, and this approach did not work. During that period the BOJ's holding of commercial paper went from zero to $117 billion (Herbener 1999, p. 14).

Explaining Japan's Recession - Benjamin Powell - Mises Daily

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The American Spectator : The Disgrace of Obamanomics

The Disgrace of Obamanomics

Last Friday's report on economic growth for the second quarter of 2011 completes the burial of Obamanomics. The economy grew a paltry 1.3% for the quarter, with reported growth for the first quarter reduced from a meager 1.8% to a negligible 0.4%. The economy for the entire year so far has actually grown less than the weak growth we thought we had for the first quarter alone.
The growth for the fourth quarter of 2010 was also reduced to 2.3%, meaning that for the last nine months the economy has grown a minimal 1.5%, barely treading water as the weekend Wall Street Journal described it. For comparison purposes, economic growth during the first seven quarters of the Reagan recovery in the 1980s boomed at an average of 7.1%. Economic growth during the first seven quarters of the Obama non-recovery has now been reduced to an average of 2.6%, barely a third as much.
Historically, as the Journal also reiterated, "the deeper the recession, the more robust the recovery." So the idea that the recovery is so bad because the recession was so bad doesn't wash. Based on the historical pattern, we should be in the second year of a booming recovery by now. President Obama instead is mired in three and a half years of stagnation with worse to come.

The American Spectator : The Disgrace of Obamanomics

US Economy: Private Sector Adds 114,000 Jobs, But Layoffs On the Rise - CNBC

Layoff Wave Lifts Job Cuts to 16-Month High
A separate report showed the number of planned layoffs at U.S. firms rose to a 16-month high in July, as sectors which had been seeing fairly few layoffs unexpectedly bled jobs.
Employers announced 66,414 planned job cuts last month, up 60.3 percent from 41,432 in June, according to a report from consultants Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc.
The job cuts were up 60 percent from June, and 59 percent higher than the 41,676 layoffs recorded in July 2010. Its was the largest monthly total since March 2010, and the first month this year that the government was not the biggest job cutter.
"What may be most worrisome about the July surge is that the heaviest layoffs occurred in industries that, until now, have enjoyed relatively low job-cut levels," John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas, said in a statement.
Layoffs in the pharmaceutical and retail sectors overtook nonprofit and government job cuts last month, accounting for 20.32 percent and 16.93 percent of announcements, respectively.

US Economy: Private Sector Adds 114,000 Jobs, But Layoffs On the Rise - CNBC

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Does America Need Ayn Rand or Jesus? -

Does America Need Ayn Rand or Jesus? -

"Ayn Rand is everywhere and her political opponents are growing nervous.

Rand of course is a champion of individual rights, including property rights, and an advocate of laissez-faire capitalism. Walk through any Tea Party gathering and you’ll see signs such as “Who is John Galt?,” “Rand was right” and “Read Atlas Shrugged.” Paul Ryan says of her, accurately in my view, that “Ayn Rand more than anyone else did a fantastic job of explaining the morality of capitalism, the morality of individualism.”"

Stop the Lying - Jim Lacey - National Review Online

Stop the Lying - Jim Lacey - National Review Online:
From the comments:

"How do you think we got all of this excessive regulation in the first place? The stories that Upton Sinclair published in the early 20th century was a bunch of lies, by his own admission. This led to increased regulation on the part of government.

The Tennessee Valley Authority was meant to promote access to electricity for rural folk, but in reality was a naked power grab by the government to increase regulation over the utilities.

The Cuyahoga River fire was put out before there was ever an Environmental Protection Agency, but we still got one.

Remember when the ozone was under assault by chloroflourocarbons? Yeah, me neither, but no one ever talks about that anymore. However, we still have a Clean Air Act the benefits of which are always dubious.

Everyone knows that Fannie and Freddie was at the center of the housing mess, but was curiously neglected as the Congress decided to ensure that greedy bankers don't take advantage of consumers 'again' (just like all the other times we've had a recession) with Dodd-Frank.

And don't even get me started on Obamacare.

In order for the government to grab more power, it must always position itself as the virtuous entity amongst a sea of rot, i.e., the rest of us. That itself is a lie."

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Dangerous Disaffection - Henry Olsen - National Review Online

Dangerous Disaffection - Henry Olsen - National Review Online: "Reagan’s rhetoric always made the typical American feel valued and special. It did not emphasize the great entrepreneurs and captains of industry, although Reagan understood how setting them free would benefit America. Instead, he focused in speech after speech on ordinary people who did extraordinary things — the “boys of Pointe-du-Hoc,” the Lenny Skutnicks. It’s a rhetorical approach built on genuine sympathy for the average person.

His vision of a new Republican party included the educated and the uneducated, the working class as well as the upper class. He explained how working-class Democrats and independents could make common cause with traditional Republican supporters to forge a new majority founded on conservative principles, a strategy that carried him to a landslide.
That majority can be reconstructed. Blue-collar whites believe the president and the Democrats do not have their best interests at heart. They want to make common cause with conservatives to save our country. They just need to know that they will be safe on the Republican ship if they come aboard. "

Monday, June 27, 2011

Capitalism Magazine - Book Excerpt: I Am John Galt - Introduction

Capitalism Magazine - Book Excerpt: I Am John Galt - Introduction:

"Maybe when you think of a villain (and let’s leave out overt monsters like, say, Adolf Hitler) you think of a corrupt politician like Richard Nixon or a crook like Bernard Madoff. Who could disagree with that? Ayn Rand certainly demonstrated that evil could exist at the highest levels of government and in business as well. We’ll meet real-world villains of both types in this book. But Rand’s novels focused primarily on that special brand of evil that is carried out under the high-minded slogans of altruism. The real-world villains you’ll meet in this book all have one thing in common: No matter how rabid their lust for power, no matter how voracious their appetite for unearned wealth, and no matter how many lives they have to destroy in the process, their villainy is all carried out in the name of selfless service to others.

Real-life Randian heroes and villains are among us. If you so choose, you can live your life such that you can truly say, “I am John Galt.” This book shows you how."

Capitalism Magazine - Hard to Take a Bone from a Dog

Capitalism Magazine - Hard to Take a Bone from a Dog:

"Because the U.S. dollar is the international reserve currency, the Fed has been able to camouflage its debasement for decades. Given that many nations are obliged to buy dollars to manage their currency valuations, excess liquidity in the U.S. flows quickly offshore where it's pernicious effects fall on other nations. Recent news from China, where the government is struggling to contain inflation while civil unrest flares, confirms this hypothesis. Too much more of this and the dollar's reserve status will be placed in greater jeopardy.

Clearly something has to be done to cut government spending or America's debt crisis will result in a sudden collapse of the once mighty U.S. dollar. The key question, though, is how to persuade politicians to take the necessary actions when doing so could spell electoral defeat?"

Friday, June 24, 2011

Leather-Politics : Message: The Real Culprits

From the book review:

More recently we've witnessed the creation of a new historical narrative about the financial crisis of 2008. The perceived history, eagerly peddled by liberals and Democrats, is that the crash of 2008 was the result of Wall Street's greed. It was unregulated capitalism that brought us to the brink of financial meltdown, the Democrats insisted. And they codified their manufactured history into a law, the Dodd-Frank Act, that completely avoided the true problem.

It's both surprising and gratifying therefore to report that a great revisionist history has just been published by none other than a New York Timesreporter, Gretchen Morgenson, and a financial analyst, Joshua Rosner.

In Reckless Endangerment, Morgenson and Rosner offer considerable censure for reckless bankers, lax rating agencies, captured regulators, and unscrupulous businessmen. But the greatest responsibility for the collapse of the housing market and the near "Armageddon" of the American economy belongs to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and to the politicians who created and protected them. With a couple of prominent exceptions, the politicians were Democrats claiming to do good for the poor. Along the way, they enriched themselves and their friends, stuffed their campaign coffers, and resisted all attempts to enforce market discipline. When the inevitable collapse arrived, the entire economy suffered, but no one more than the poor.

Leather-Politics : Message: The Real Culprits

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

GOP eyes tax breaks, loopholes - Richard E. Cohen -

Last week’s resounding votes on ethanol subsidies were just the start. Republicans are now starting to eye all sorts of tax breaks and special-interest loopholes once considered sacred cows as they seek ways to increase government revenue without actually raising tax rates.
The targeting of long-protected tax breaks — for ethanol, research and development, manufacturing and foreign company income — is a sign that key House Republicans are ready to break with the orthodoxy of past tax debates while ditching special interests that have long held sway in tax reform discussions.

Read more:
GOP eyes tax breaks, loopholes - Richard E. Cohen -

Monday, May 9, 2011

Housing crash is getting worse: report

BOSTON (MarketWatch) — If you thought the housing crisis was bad, think again.

It’s worse.

New data just out from Zillow, the real-estate information company, show house prices are falling at their fastest rate since the Lehman collapse.

Monday, April 11, 2011

American Thinker: Donald Trump Scores an Important Victory... Over the Media

Gail Collins, the New York Times's most reliably uninteresting liberal attack dog, questioned Trump's sanity just for raising the birth certificate issue. But would she say the same about famed black Vanderbilt University Law Professor and Obama supporter Carol Swain? Swain has said "I think that by not releasing it [the full birth certificate], it makes people much more passionately opposed to the president. Moreover, for a president who was elected on the basis of his personal background, it is troubling that Obama himself would want to withhold such basic information."

The media's curiosity about the background of those running for national office seemed to know no bounds when it came to George W. Bush's service in the Texas Air National Guard or the sexual behavior of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin's daughter. But during and since the 2008 campaign a virtual wall of silence has been constructed around Obama.

This has important implications for the country. Questions about Obama's family and his relationship to Islam, for example, and hence his world view, remain subjects of speculation. Former CIA officer Larry Johnson, for example, believes that the full birth record from the State of Hawaii was probably amended in 1968 to show Obama was adopted by his step father, the Indonesian Muslim Lolo Soetoro, that he became formally known for a time as "Barry Soetoro," and may even have his religion listed as Muslim. This would completely change what Obama has said about his past and represent a public fraud of a very significant magnitude.

The 10 Best Conservative Replacements For Glenn Beck’s Fox News Slot | NewsReal Blog

Since the announcement that Glenn Beck is leaving Fox News, conspiracy theories abound. We may never know the whole story or the details behind the split but what we can do is wildly speculate who is going to take his place. The most important thing Fox News president Roger Ailes should keep in mind is whoever takes Beck's time slot has to be someone who makes the Left put their full-blown moonbattery on display. It must be someone who pushes all the right buttons and enrages leftists, causing them to picket and boycott and all the other fun and hilarious things they do when confronted by conservative truth-tellers.
The thing I'll miss most about Beck being gone is the reaction from all the statist twerps who hate him with a frenzy that can only be compared to neurotic miniature poodles who pee on the carpet when overexcited. Ailes should focus like a laser on replacing Beck with only the most hated personality he can find. Not only will it keep the ratings up, but it will provide sane people with fantastic entertainment. The following are 10 suggestions for conservative hosts sure to make the Left angrier (and funnier) than they already are.

10. We Have Lesbians Too, Only Ours Are Prettier: Meet Tammy Bruce
Nothing infuriates the Left more than a traitor, and Tammy Bruce is a pretty big traitor. Bruce is a lesbian, a former NOW chapter president, and lifelong Democrat. Then she saw the light when she realized that individuals aren't welcome on the Left. Group-think is a requirement and Bruce isn't a team player. She's been one of the most popular conservative talk-show hosts and a best-selling author ever since. She loves to tweak the Left and isn't afraid to say unpopular things. Readers at the Huffington Post went bananas after she called Michelle Obama trash.
"That's what he's married to," Bruce said. "…You know what we've got? We've got trash in the White House. Trash is a thing that is colorblind, it can cross all eco-socionomic…categories. You can work on Wall Street, or you can work at the Wal-Mart. Trash, are people who use other people to get things, who patronize others, who consider you bitter and clingy…"
Just perusing the reader comments is a fun trip down the the progressive rabbit hole.
These are the kinds of people, however, that will encourage the upcoming slaughter of Republicans in the next election. In this way they are doing for the American people what Anita Bryant did for the gays- stir them to action. I look forward VERY MUCH to seeing far fewer Republican­s in the Congress and Senate after the next election. ~Johnny76
Those were delusional ramblings that Johnny76 wrote in 2009. In case you weren't aware, the election in 2010 ushered in a record number of Republicans and enough people to fill the mall in D.C. who also think the White House is full of trash.

Boehner: Next fight to be about trillions, not billions -

The Path to Prosperity is a powerful blueprint for economic growth and fiscal responsibility that will help our economy get back to creating jobs, stop Washington from spending money we don't have, and lift the crushing burden of debt that threatens our children and grandchildren.

Before serving in Congress, I ran a small business. Created jobs. Met a payroll. I understand how important the Path to Prosperity is because I've seen firsthand how irresponsible choices in Washington hamper our economy by creating uncertainty and eroding confidence.

Small businesses are the engine of job creation in America, and every decision a small business owner makes — particularly when it comes to making a new investment or adding payroll — involves weighing risks.

When government engages in policies that rattle confidence or decrease predictability, employers tend to do the logical thing: They sit on their hands. Rather than hiring new workers, launching new ventures, or investing in new equipment, they stand pat, keep their heads down and attempt to ride it out.

American Thinker: Silver and Gold Prices Delivering Terrible News for America

As I've been saying for the last year or so, now is the time to save whatever wealth you have from the coming Obama-caused hyper-inflation and buy gold, and lately, to buy silver.  Here's an article that explains a little about why:

In the United States, the media's interest has been focused on who won the game that was the potential government shutdown.  As usual the reporting is based on a sporting event and not the importance of the change of direction the shutdown represents.  At the moment there is no winner or loser; that will be decided if and only if spending is dramatically reduced and government begins to shrink appreciably. 

Many of us have repeatedly called attention to the financial markets and international uncertainty precipitated by American monetary, fiscal and foreign policies by focusing on bell-weather commodity prices, particularly precious metals.  On Friday silver pushed above $40.00 a troy ounce for the first time since 1980 and gold reached a new all-time high in nominal terms at $1,474.19.

Recent predictions and those generally accepted by the markets have silver hitting $50.00 a troy ounce and gold to crash the $1,550.00 mark soon.  While these rallies have had clear links to fears about inflation, there is more to this situation than just inflation fears.

In fact both markets actually have surplus supply.  While demand is good, particularly for silver in industrial use, much of the demand is driven by investors.  It is not a matter of industrial demand but rather demand driven by investors.

Obama Puts Taxes on Table -

What he shows no awareness of is that it is people who have wealth who are the ones who invest it in business and thus create the jobs he says he wants.  By raising taxes on "the wealthy"--in fact the upper middle class--Obama's policies are anti-growth, anti-wealth, and hurt everyone, especially those at the bottom of the wage scale.  We need those investment dollars.  We need to know that we don't have a government that hates success, hates wealth, and is perfectly willing to sacrifice those who earn a lot for the benefit who live off the rest of us.

In a speech Wednesday, Mr. Obama will propose cuts to entitlement programs, including Medicare and Medicaid, and changes to Social Security, a discussion he has largely left to Democrats and Republicans in Congress. He also will call for tax increases for people making over $250,000 a year, a proposal contained in his 2012 budget, and changing parts of the tax code he thinks benefit the wealthy.

The Military's Secret Shame - Newsweek

While many might assume the perpetrators of such assaults are closeted gay soldiers, military experts and outside researchers say assailants usually are heterosexual. Like in prisons and other predominantly male environments, male-on-male assault in the military, experts say, is motivated not by homosexuality, but power, intimidation, and domination.

Assault victims, both male and female, are typically young and low-ranking; they are targeted for their vulnerability. Often, in male-on-male cases, assailants go after those they assume are gay, even if they are not. "One of the reasons people commit sexual assault is to put people in their place, to drive them out," says Mic Hunter, author of Honor Betrayed: Sexual Abuse in America's Military. "Sexual assault isn't about sex, it's about violence."
According to Hunter and others, the repeal of the military's policy of "don't ask, don't tell" might actually help the institution address the issue. Under that rule, being gay meant being fundamentally unfit to serve; it meant you didn't belong. It also meant that victims were even more reluctant to report their attacks. "I wouldn't say that the repeal is going to make it safe," says Aaron Belkin, director of the Palm Center, a think tank on gays in the military. "But male victims will be a little bit less reluctant to report their assaults."

Belkin notes that it's not just the military that avoids the issue: even gay-rights organizations are wary of it. "We don't like to talk about it because it makes rape look like a gay issue," Belkin says. "The military doesn't want to talk about it because, as embarrassing as male-female rape is [from their perspective], this is even worse. The very fact that there's male-on-male rape in the military means that there are warriors who aren't strong enough to fight back."

The Military's Secret Shame - Newsweek

What happened to Jeloudov is a part of life in the armed forces that hardly anyone talks about: male-on-male sexual assault.

In the staunchly traditional military culture, it's an ugly secret, kept hidden by layers of personal shame and official denial. Last year nearly 50,000 male veterans screened positive for "military sexual trauma" at the Department of Veterans Affairs, up from just over 30,000 in 2003.

For the victims, the experience is a special kind of hell—a soldier can't just quit his job to get away from his abusers.

Daily Presidential Tracking Poll - Rasmussen Reports™

In a book released last year, Scott Rasmussen observed that, "The gap between Americans who want to govern themselves and politicians who want to rule over them may be as big today as the gap between the colonies and England during the 18th  century." He added that "The American people don't want to be governed from the left, the right, or the center. They want to govern themselves." In Search of Self-Governance is available at

MAD AS HELL: How the Tea Party Movement is Fundamentally Remaking Our Two-Party System, by Scott Rasmussen and Doug Schoen, can be ordered at, Barnes and Noble, Borders and other outlets. It's also available in bookstores everywhere.

It is important to remember that the Rasmussen Reports job approval ratings are based upon a sample of likely voters. Some other firms base their approval ratings on samples of all adults. President Obama's numbers are always several points higher in a poll of adults rather than likely voters. That's because some of the president's most enthusiastic supporters, such as young adults, are less likely to turn out to vote. It is also important to check the details of question wording when comparing approval ratings from different firms.

Friday, April 8, 2011

What Wisconsin's Judicial Election Means

Regardless of the ultimate result, there are vital lessons we should take from the race.

First, the machine of leftism, even operating in a structurally leftist state like Wisconsin, is a paper tiger.  Unions long ruled Great Lakes states with an iron hand and a rubber truncheon.  The well-paid army of union operatives, the dull armies of whipped members, and the timidity of possible opponents has meant that unions were able to drive the economy of the industrial heartland of the world's greatest economy into poverty and despair.

This judicial election, however, dispels the notion of omnipotent unions.  Voter turnout in these elections is ordinarily light.  Incumbent judges seeking reelection do not have huge organizations and vast pots of campaign funds to support them.  In this race, the leftist challenger Kloppenburg had all the advantages.  She should have walked away with this race, but she did not.  Even if Kloppenburg somehow "discovers" her own trove of uncounted votes, the left will only win the battle and lose the war.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

American Thinker: Regulatory Dysfunction

If we are to emerge from recession, America's business regulatory burden must be reassessed.

In a 2008 review of the cost of government regulations entitled Ten Thousand Commandments, Wayne Crews of the Competitive Enterprise Institute estimated that the cost of government regulations to businesses and, ultimately, to consumers was $1 trillion or more annually.  Regulations added 70,000 pages to the Federal Register.  Regulatory costs almost matched all corporate profits in 2007 and were seven times higher than the 2007 budget deficit.  Crews wrote that "Federal environmental, safety and health, and economic regulations cost hundreds of billions of dollars every year over and above the costs of official federal outlays."

Monday, April 4, 2011

Capitalism Magazine - At War...with America: Obama's Altruistic War Fighting Philosophy

We have no responsibility to provide the Libyan people with anything, least of all help in overthrowing their tyrant. And about that $33 billion in Libyan assets: It does not belong to the Libyan people; it belongs to us because it represents wealth extorted from the West, especially from the U.S. in the form of oil prices on oil produced from expropriated oil wells and fields. That $33 billion should be applied to Obama's rising government debt, and be returned to American taxpayers by declaring an income tax holiday for the next three years.

Two of the best critiques to date of Obama's Libyan intervention are Richard Salsman's March 23rd Forbes article, "Libya Exposes Obama as Our Latest Neocon President," which presents the moral case against Obama, and Daniel Greenfield's March 29th "The Known Unknowns of Libya" on Sultan Knish, which spotlights the utter recklessness of Obama's irrational, illogical, and perilous actions regarding Libya.

Capitalism Magazine - Donald Trump: The Wish Fulfillment Candidate

As the American economy continues not to grow or get any better, the appeal of a fascist-lite dictator such as Donald Trump will grow. This isn't because there are no rational alternatives to dictatorship. It's just that none are being offered. The Tea Party talks cutting spending, but offers no strength because it offers no ideology of any kind. As a result, it's hardly cutting a penny from the budget (and in today's terms, a penny is a billion). Quite naturally people are going to listen to Donald Trump, because they think he's something different from Barack Obama. But Donald Trump is not the voice of reason, nor the voice of the personal responsibility Americans must take if we are to remain a free country (politically) and become a free country again (economically).

Trump is the voice of wishful thinking -- disguised by toughness.

Capitalism Magazine - Housing Will Remain a Government Program

As I have repeatedly predicted, the US will have a "double-dip" recession lead by the housing sector:
The widely-followed Case-Shiller Home Price Index fell 3.1% in January; prices are now at their lowest level since the housing market made its first bottom in April 2009. Sales of existing homes were off nearly 10% in February, and new homes sales were at a record low. As the economy worsens, there can be little doubt that housing is headed for a double-dip.

The government's "make housing affordable" approach to market intervention is the root of the entire problem. To a large extent, this intervention takes the form of mortgage purchases by government-sponsored Fannie and Freddie. Through these entities, nearly all new loans for homes are now destined for public ownership. When these entities buy a mortgage, they are doing so to help the borrower get the needed financing. They have only a casual interest in the investment quality of the transaction. This is very different motivation from the private investor, who is primarily concerned with getting paid back; and on that basis, wouldn't go anywhere near US housing.

Capitalism Magazine - The Draft: Slavery as Literal as it Comes

You hear less about the draft nowadays because the liberal left -- the politicians who are responsible for most expansions of government power -- don't like the use of military force, at least when it's the American military doing the intervention. Liberals cannot in good conscience support a draft when they have so little use for the military. This is why so many liberals (and conservatives too) favor something called "national service." National service is a way to turn young people into servants of the state without even using the military.

I'd like to think it says something for the United States that it no longer has a military draft, and there's no indication that one is forthcoming. I'd like to think that it represents progress towards the expansion of individual rights. But then I look at all that Obama has done to expand government power, and all that George W. Bush did to expand government power before him, and I recognize there's no trend towards individual rights in the United States. What happened was that the military became more technological and high-tech, making untrained manpower less relevant than trained forces who are comfortable with the use of our advanced weaponry. It's politicians who want to impose "national service" -- draft or not -- on the population, because the vast majority of liberal and conservative politicians care first and foremost about the government ... not the people, and least of all the individual.

It's not possible to conceive of a free society in which there's a draft -- not now, not ever. Freedom is the most precious thing a human being can have, and because most individuals understand this, most will fight for it if the invaders are at their front door. It's governments who oppose freedom and it's governments who want to expand their own power.

The draft is a perfect way to do that. But in a technologically advanced society as the United States, government has found other ways to expand its coercive influence over the lives of people. If we continue our move towards soft fascism and socialism, who knows -- the draft may make a comeback.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

RealClearPolitics - Video - Donald Trump: Obama Possibly A Muslim

I do agree with Karl Rove on this one.  If Donald Trump tries to make an issue of Obama's birth, he will only be falling into a trap laid by Obama to marginalize everything else Trump might otherwise have to say on the serious issues facing the country.  Obama may or may not have been born in HI, although it's very difficult for me to credit the notion he was not, since his birth was announced within three days of his birth in a Hawaiian newspaper.  His hippie Mom planned for him to be President one day?  She birthed the kid in Kenya, smuggled the baby into Hawaii and then gave the newspaper a false report, knowing one day that the kid who would be President needed to be a born citizen? 

More probably Obama's birth certificate says he's a Muslim.  There must be some reason why Obama will not show it and has spend millions in legal fees to prevent others from obtaining information about his birth and about his academic record at Harvard, his teaching record at Chicago.

But arguing that Obama is not an American citizen is debating about how to put toothpaste back in the tube.  It's a gigantic time-waster and an excellent way for Obama to derail his opposition in 2012, that is, if his opposition falls into that particular trap.