Saturday, January 21, 2012

Friday, January 20, 2012

Occupiers for Obama

The only Occupy camp that hasn't been cleared is in Washington, D.C. Why is that not surprising? - Peter Hannaford/The American Specator Online on 1.20.12

In most cities where they had been camping, the “Occupy” people have drifted away, no longer welcome to create tent cities -- even in New York, where it all started, or in Oakland, where well-organized anarchists (not an oxymoron in this case) led militant assaults on the port. The one big exception is Washington, D.C., where assorted leftists, layabouts, and Generation Y'ers (as is Y work? and Y take responsibility for my actions?) have been allowed to live non-stop in downtown's McPherson Square for three months.

Until the "Occupy" people came along, the square was dominated by Civil War General James McPherson's equestrian statue (and his ever-present pigeons). It has long been a popular pedestrian shortcut from "I" to "K" Street and its benches were frequently used on warm days for resting or reading.

Washington's mayor says his public health inspectors have reported the tent camp is infested with rats and has the potential for communicable diseases, hypothermia, and food-born ailments. So why hasn't he shut down the camp? It is the one city in the land where the city government does not control the situation. The National Park Service overseas McPherson Square. The NPS has been, oh, so tolerant of the campers despite the fact there is a clear federal regulation prohibiting sleeping in such public places.

To justify their inaction, National Park officials claim that the camp is a "round-the-clock demonstration vigil" and the tents are "temporary structures" and thus elements of free speech.

Yes, but the NPS regulation say that "temporary structures" may not be used for sleeping (the Supreme Court in 1984 ruled that a regulation preventing sleeping in a public park did not violate the First Amendment).

Mayor Vincent Gray has written to the NPS to alleviate the health hazard by clearing the park. (Neighboring stores, restaurants, and many citizens have been complaining.) The NPS hasn't yet replied, though its spokesperson says it is "reviewing" the matter.

The ever-cautious National Park Service must begin the review by finding an employee who knows how to read. Then he or she must read the regulation, digest its significance, then discuss it with superiors. Who would they be? The Superintendent of the NPS reports to the Secretary of the Interior. The Secretary of the Interior reports to, now let's see -- why, it's the President of the United States!

Early in the New York "Occupy" effort, Mr. Obama had kind words for the Occupiers. He shrewdly deduced that even if there weren't many voters among the noisy campers many other left-liberal types would sympathize with them and Obama's quasi-endorsement would help him sharpen his class warfare campaign message. Day after day the campers obliged. Finally, the stench, noise, public defecation, drug-dealing, rape, and assault were too much, and police moved in and cleared out the camp. Other cities followed suit, but not Washington.

The volume of criticism in Washington is growing daily. Of course the White House is a bystander, as one of its spokesmen recently claimed, with a straight face, that "operational decisions have been and continue to be made" by Interior and NPS officials.

Another "of course" is that this violation of a federal regulation and the resulting public health and public nuisance would not have been tolerated more than briefly unless tacit approval of a hands-off approach had not been made by the White House. Up until now, at least, it has served the Obama campaign's political purposes.

Just Tuesday this week, the "Occupy" people obtained a permit for an anti-Congress rally of 10,000 people on west side of the U.S. Capitol. Only a few hundred showed up to wave anti-capitalist signs and shout slogans.

Congress is not idle in all this. The indefatigable Rep. Darrell Issa, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, has called a hearing for next Tuesday to determine who is responsible for the decision to allow the "Occupy" people to camp indefinitely in McPherson Square. The double-talk from NPS officials and other administration operatives should be entertaining, if not satisfying.
__________________

Peter Hannaford’s is latest book is Reagan's Roots: The People and Places That Shaped His Character.

The president has, in an election year and without congressional oversight, assumed sweeping and virtually unilateral authority to make policy that will generate windfalls for his two most financially crucial campaign constituencies -- organized labor and the plaintiffs' bar.

Manhattan Moment: The rest of the story behind Obama's recess appointments - James R. Copland/Washington Examiner

Just how important are trial lawyers and labor unions to the president's election? In the 2008 election, lawyers and law firms funneled over $45 million into Obama's campaign, more than twice as much as any other industry.

Since assuming office, Obama has worked to repay these campaign benefactors. The auto-company bailouts propped up unions by undercutting the clear legal rights of secured debt holders, and much of the "stimulus" spending was designed to protect public-sector unions by shielding them from budget cuts made by strapped state and local governments.

Trial lawyers avoided any serious tort reform in Obamacare, and they got legislation that gutted statutes of limitation for employment-discrimination lawsuits and expanded the scope of private litigation against government contractors.

...With his recess appointments, however, Obama is now in a position to avoid such congressional obstacles and help unions and lawyers through fiat. With three of the five NLRB members slipped into power in the dead of night -- and two of these three were nominated only two days before the Senate's Christmas break, hardly stalled by congressional inaction -- the president's labor-friendly cronies will be well-positioned to make rulings advantageous to unions.

Call to Convention! Please act now and make your reservations!


California Republican Party 2012 Spring Convention

Room reservations open now at the Hyatt San Francisco Airport, Burlingame. Please call the Hyatt at 888-421-1442 by Friday, February 3, 2012 to receive your California Republican Party discounted group rate of $145 plus tax & occupancy fees per night. The CRP room block is available for the nights of Friday, February 24th through Sunday, February 26th. This rate is based upon availability at the time you book your reservation. Rooms may sell out prior to the above date.

HYATT RESERVATION PROCESS & BOOKING WEBSITE
A dedicated booking website has been created at the Hyatt for the convention so you will be able to make, modify and cancel hotel reservations online, as well as take advantage of any room upgrades, amenities or other services offered by the hotel.

To book your room online, ◼ Click here.

Bankrupt Solyndra Caught Destroying Brand New Parts

Solyndra paid at least $2 million for the specialized glass. A CBS 5 crew found one piece lying in the parking lot. Solyndra still owes the German company that made the tubes close to another $8 million. - SF CBS

At Solyndra’s sprawling complex in Fremont, workers in white jumpsuits were unwrapping brand new glass tubes used in solar panels last week. They are the latest, most cutting-edge solar technology, and they are being thrown into dumpsters.

Forklifts brought one pallet after another piled high with the carefully packaged glass. Slowly but surely it all ended up shattered.

Team Obama shuts down 'Main Street'

The imagery associated with Obama’s visit may undercut the very message he is trying sell.

A White House official said Obama will speak at Disney World to “unveil a strategy that will significantly help boost tourism and travel,” but local newspaper reports in Florida have revealed that Disney World’s Main Street, which is centrally located in the park and contains much of the food and other items that can be purchased in the park, will be closed until late in the day. According to these reports, the guests who are at Disney World when Obama visits have been barred from attending the speech unless they get special permission from the White House and Disney’s employees will not even be able to use their passes to get into the park....

“The White House is literally shutting down ‘Main Street USA’ -- including dozens of vibrant shops, restaurants and attractions,” (Jason) Recher told HUMAN EVENTS. “[Obama’s] job-killing policies have already shut down many real Main Streets across our country, so I guess it makes sense.”

“This is politics at its worst.” That’s how Terry O’Sullivan, general president of the Laborers’ International Union of North America described President Obama’s decision to reject the bipartisan Keystone XL pipeline and the more than 20,000 jobs that would come with it.

But the president’s union supporters aren’t the only ones shocked by his willingness to make out-of-work Americans wait for much-needed jobs. - speaker.gov/

Editorial boards across the country are calling the decision everything from “shortsighted” to “a missed economic opportunity” to “the most craven sort of election-year politics.” See what they're saying, at the link.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

“Newt Gingrich was not my preferred candidate, and still isn’t. But in these debates he has proven that Republicans love a fighter. We are tired of a biased media belittling us and denigrating, even undermining, us. We are tired of an ignorant media inflating nonsense and avoiding asking the other side the tough questions Republicans deal with every day. Like a Civil War general once accused of letting his personal problems get in the way of doing his duty, we may not be able to spare Newt Gingrich. He isn’t perfect, far from it. But he fights.”

Can We Spare Newt Gingrich? He Fights - PJMedia

Poll: Majority Of Americans Think Obama Hasn't Accomplished Much of Anything

The latest Washington Post-ABC News poll has the bad news for Obama as he enters the last year of his first term: - CNS News

Nine percent of Americans believe the economy is in the middle of a strong recovery - and slightly more than half of Americans think Obama has accomplished little or nothing in his three years in office.

The WaPo story tries to put a good spin on it for Obama, noting that, while "twice as many say they are worse off financially since Obama became president than say their situations have improved," at least "Obama has begun to recover from career lows in several important areas, including job creation, which is expected to be at the center of the debate in the general-election contest."

Herman Cain will give Tea Party State of the Union response

This will be the second tea party response hosted by the California-based political action committee. - Kathleen Hennessey/LA Times

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) delivered remarks last year carried live on CNN. It was not yet clear whether the networks planned to air Cain's remarks. The speech will stream on the group’s site, ◼ www.teapartyexpress.com.

The official GOP response to the president's speech will be delivered by Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels.

FULL CNN GOP Debate South Carolina January 19 2012



South Carolina GOP CNN debate, Jan. 19, 2012. Transcript - Chicago Sun Times

Charleston Debate – Newt took 1st question about ex-wife, wrapped question around John King’s neck, and tightened



John King started the night with a question about Newt’s ex-wife’s interview in which she alleged Newt sought an “open marriage.” - Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion

Newt lectures CNN for question about ex-wife - Charlie Spiering/Washington Examiner

"I am appalled that you would begin a presidential debate on a topic like that," Gingrich said.

King got defensive, but the crowd loved it, giving Gingrich a standing ovation for his answer.

70% Disagree With Obama – Favor Increased Access to Oil and Gas Resources

What America is Thinking on Energy Issues - 70 percent of voters favor more oil and natural gas development - API

Seventy percent of American voters favor increased access to U.S. oil and natural gas resources, and similar numbers believe more oil and natural gas development would provide major benefits to the nation, including more U.S. jobs, according to ◼ a new poll released today. (PDF)

"Voters know developing more of America's homegrown energy makes sense for our economy and our energy security," said API President and CEO Jack Gerard. "Our economy will demand large amounts of oil and natural gas for at least several more decades even as the role of alternative energy increases. Common sense says we should have Americans producing that oil and gas here at home as much as possible."

PUMP PRICE DOUBLES SINCE INAUGURATION DAY - eia.gov/ via Drudge

“After the largest tax hike in our history, the state continues to be in this precarious fiscal position with persistent payment delays, and frankly, the situation is unlikely to significantly improve in the near term,” she said.

Illinois’ Unpaid Bill Crisis Just Keeps Getting Worse

Illinois keeps falling farther behind on its debt.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Regine Schlesinger reports, officially, the state has a backlog of more than $4.25 billion in unpaid bills.

But Illinois State Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka says when one factors in other bills, the figure is closer to around $8.5 billion.

Those other outstanding bills include tax refunds, employee health insurance, and bills that have not yet reached her desk.

Topinka says this is extremely disappointing, since a year ago, the state sharply increased income taxes (by 67 percent) and corporate taxes.

“After the largest tax hike in our history, the state continues to be in this precarious fiscal position with persistent payment delays, and frankly, the situation is unlikely to significantly improve in the near term,” she said.

Some state officials say the solution is more borrowing to pay the bills, but Topinka says the solution is to cut spending.

Santorum Wins Iowa, RPI Refuses to Acknowledge Victory

It seems odd that Iowa GOP Chairman Matt Strawn declared Romney the winner on caucuses night, but refuses to declare Santorum the winner after the certification process. - The Iowa Republican

Iowa GOP Chairman Matt Strawn told the Des Moines Register that he could not speculate on who actually won the caucuses because the party was unable to certify the final eight precincts. However, we can speculate about those precincts because we have the results that were phoned in on caucus night. In the eight disputed precincts, Santorum received 81 votes to Romney’s 46.

...It seems odd that Iowa GOP Chairman Matt Strawn declared Romney the winner on caucuses night, but refuses to declare Santorum the winner after the certification process.

John Boehner: Sign the petition to build the Keystone pipeline and tell President Obama to stop destroying jobs:

Despite strong support from Republicans, Democrats, businesses and labor unions, President Obama has decided to reject the job-creating Keystone pipeline project to appease his radical left-wing base.

Sign our petition today and tell President Obama to stop putting his own reelection ahead of American job creation! Click here now.

Gingrich Surges To South Carolina Lead

New Rasmussen poll will show Newt Gingrich pulling into the lead in South Carolina - John Hayward at Human Events
New poll has Gingrich leading Romney in S.C. - Michael Barone/Washington Examiner
Gingrich......33%
Romney.......31%
Paul...........15%
Santorum.....11%
Perry...........2%
Other..........1%
Not Sure.......6%
Rasmussen: Gingrich 33/31 over Romney in SC - HotAir
Two Polls Show Gingrich Ahead Of Romney In South Carolina - Wake Up America
Newt Gingrich led Mitt Romney 34-28 in PPP's South Carolina polling last night, the first of what will be three nights of tracking. Ron Paul at 15%, Rick Santorum at 14%, Rick Perry at 5%, and Buddy Roemer at 3% round out the field.
Gingrich leads Romney on 1st night of tracking - PPP
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has now surged ahead of Mitt Romney in the final Rasmussen Reports survey of the South Carolina Republican Primary race with the vote just two days away. - Rasmussen

Debate TONIGHT 5:00 p.m.

Tune in Thursday at 8 p.m. ET for the CNN/Southern Republican Presidential Debate hosted by John King and follow it on Twitter at ◼ #CNNDebate. For real-time coverage of the South Carolina primary, go to ◼ CNNPolitics.com or to the ◼ CNN apps or CNN mobile web site.

Livestream

Perry Dropping Out; Will Endorse Gingrich

Rick Perry plans to drop out of the race for the GOP presidential nomination on Thursday and will endorse Newt Gingrich, sources tell National Journal. Perry will make the announcement in North Charleston at 11 a.m. - National Journal

Rick Perry is telling supporters that he will drop his bid Thursday for the Republican presidential nomination, two sources familiar with his plans told CNN. - CNN

Perry: ‘Newt Is Not Perfect, But Who Among Us Is?’ - CBS-DC

Bitter Marianne Gingrich Unloads, Claims Newt Wanted Open Marriage...


In her most provocative comments, the ex-Mrs. Gingrich said Newt sought an "open marriage" arrangement so he could have a mistress and a wife. - ABC via Drudge (image source)

In her first television interview since the 1999 divorce, to be broadcast tonight on Nightline, Marianne Gingrich, a self-described conservative Republican, said she is coming forward now so voters can know what she knows about Gingrich.

It has come to this - Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion

‘Gingrich Called Her Husband on His Birthday’
Browning said Marianne Gingrich called her husband on his birthday in June 1987 to tell him she was leaving him. Gingrich, he said, came back to Georgia to find his home emptied out.

Browning said the pair maintained separate residences for six years before reconciling in late 1993 or early 1994.
When Marianne cleaned out the house - Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion
There’s more to the story than you are hearing in the media. Marianne Gingrich is no innocent, and she was the one who broke the marriage and cleaned out the house, via Robert Costa via AP report from 1999
A CLOSER LOOK AT ABC’S BRIAN ROSS - The Crossroads

Rick Santorum: "Rebellion"

Where Do Your Representatives Stand on SOPA and PIPA?

SOPA Opera - ProPublica

67 Supporters, including California representatives Baca, Bass, Berman, Bono Mack, Boxer, Chu, Feinstein, Gallegly, Schiff, and Sherman.

Judge Napolitano "What if..."

House investigates 'F' grades of Obamacare rules

House investigators have asked President Obama's regulatory officials and Health and Human Services to explain why economists at Duke and George Mason Universities flagged all nine Obamacare regulations released in 2010 with failing grades caused by "biased" analyses. - Joel Gehrke/Washington Examiner

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee statement noted that "the study found that the estimated benefits and net benefits of the regulations were systematically biased upward [and] the estimated costs of the regulations were systematically biased downward," according to economists Christopher Conover and Jerry Ellig. The economists, who released the study through the Mercatus Institute, also found that "the distinction between transfers and efficiency benefits was often confused; and that the analyses consistently ignored less expensive regulatory alternatives."

The Mercatus Center says that the Obamacare regulations appear designed "to justify, rather than inform, decisions."

House Oversight and Government Reform Chair Darrell Issa, R-Calif., and Health Care Subcommittee chair Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., suggested "that the review process—designed to be a check against flawed regulations—was rushed" in violation of Obama's executive order on regulatory review.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Iowa GOP Will Certify Who Won the Jan. 3 Caucuses on Thursday Morning

The outcome of the Iowa caucus election came under scrutiny after allegations surfaced that primary contender Mitt Romney, who apparently beat counterpart Rick Santorum by 8 votes, had mistakenly received 20 votes. - CNS News

Hell Hath No Fury

DRUDGE EXCLUSIVE: NEWT EX-WIFE UNLOADS ON CAMERA; NETWORK DEBATES 'ETHICS'
ABC DEBATES 'ETHICS' OF AIRING BEFORE PRIMARY...
NYT: Disagreement over timing of interview - NYT
Greta Van Susteren: 'I would hold it until after the polls close' - GretaWire
AP: ABC TO AIR FRIDAY NIGHT... - AP via Breitbart
AP: ABC TO AIR THURSDAY NIGHT...
GINGRICH DAUGHTERS: 'The failure of a marriage is terrible and emotional experience' - Politico
The failure of a marriage is a terrible and emotional experience for everyone involved. Anyone who has had that experience understands it is a personal tragedy filled with regrets, and sometimes differing memories of events.

We will not say anything negative about our father’s ex-wife. He has said before, privately and publicly, that he regrets any pain he may have caused in the past to people he loves.

ABC News or other campaigns may want to talk about the past, just days before an important primary election. But Newt is going to talk to the people of South Carolina about the future– about job creation, lower taxes, and about who can defeat Barack Obama by providing the sharpest contrast to his damaging, extreme liberalism. We are confident this is the conversation the people of South Carolina are interested in having.

Our father is running for President because of his grandchildren – so they can inherit the America he loves. To do that, President Obama must be defeated. And as the only candidate in the race, including Obama, who has actually helped balance the national budget, create jobs, reform welfare, and cut taxes and spending, Newt felt compelled to run - to serve his country and safeguard his grandchildren's future.
Adviser: Marianne 'very bitter' - National Review
Is Newt's campaign about to collapse? Gingrich's ex-wife promises explosive revelations in TV interview ahead of primary - Daily Mail
ABC Lands Gingrich Ex-Wife Interview, Civil War Erupts Over Air Date - Dana Loesch/Big Journalism
Will Newt's ex doom his chances in South Carolina? - Philip Klein/Washington Examiner

House votes to block Obama request for another $1.2 trillion in debt

The House on Wednesday kicked off the new Congressional session by passing a resolution to reject President Barack Obama’s call to raise the debt limit by another $1.2 trillion. - Audrey Hudson/Human Events

The resolution was passed by Republicans on a mostly party-line vote of 239 to 176. Rep. David Dreier (R. –Calif.) was the only Republican voting no, six Democrats voted yes.

However, the largely symbolic resolution is not expected to pass the Democratic-controlled Senate during a vote next week or advance to the White House, which means the national debt will automatically increase to $16.4 trillion.

The so-called resolution of disapproval is the only option available to stop what are now automatic debt increases triggered by the Budget Control Act that passed the House in August by a vote of 269-161 with 174 Republicans and 95 Democrats voting in favor of the new law.

There have already been two automatic increases since its passage totaling $9 billion, but Wednesday’s action sought to block until after the November election the third and final increase expected.

Rep. Dan Burton (R. –Ind.) said Republicans share in the blame for raising the debt ceiling, and that they should never have passed the Budget Control Act to put the increases on autopilot.

“We gave the president carte blanche and it’s dead wrong,” Burton said. “This president has control that no president has had in history … able to raise the debt ceiling without us being able to do a darn thing about it. This body made a huge mistake. And the American people need to know it.”

By rejecting the job-creating Keystone Energy Pipeline, President Obama is destroying tens of thousands of American jobs and shipping American energy security to the Chinese. The House will not allow this to stand.



Speaker Boehner and House Republicans today blasted the Obama administration’s decision to deny new jobs to tens of thousands of Americans and surrender America’s energy security to China by rejecting the Keystone XL pipeline. Speaker Boehner pledged to continue fighting for the thousands of much-need jobs the pipeline will create - especially for those hit hardest by the Obama administration’s disastrous economic policies.

Rep. Allen West Condemns State Department for Denying Keystone Pipeline Project
(WASHINGTON)-- Congressman Allen West (R-FL) released this statement today upon learning of the State Department's decision not to issue a permit to begin construction on the Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada, before the February 21st deadline:
"It is absolutely irresponsible that the President would block a project such as the Keystone XL pipeline - a project that industry experts say would create at least 20,000 American jobs and be essential in helping jumpstart the American economy. This decision today is further evidence that President Obama is not serious about setting the conditions for job creation nor working towards our energy independence as it relates to our national security. Once again, President Obama has shown that his reelection and pandering to his left wing liberal environmental base is more important than securing the future for our nation. The ramifications of this utterly disturbing politically motivated decision will be far and wide. Congratulations China."
Obama’s “Forced” Keystone Decision Rejects Jobs, Energy, and Logic - Heritage.org
President Obama’s politically intoned decision to reject TransCanada’s permit application to construct a 1,700-mile pipeline from Alberta, Canada, to Texas refineries sent a clear message that special interest demands are of more importance than more energy and much-needed job creation.
Senator Marco Rubio: Keystone Pipeline Should Move Forward
President Obama's decision not to move forward on the Keystone pipeline is a mistake. This decision offers even more appalling evidence that this administration is hopelessly rudder-less in its jobs and energy policies. By not acting on Keystone, the President is depriving America of a means to create jobs, take a step towards energy independence, and bolster our national security by tapping into our energy resources and those of our friends in Canada instead of tyrannical governments.
Michele Bachmann:
The President will not issue the permit to complete the Keystone Pipeline. This decision shows a lack of interest in creating thousands of needed jobs to boost the American economy.

Evangelicals for Perry Endorses Newt Gingrich for President - Yes, you read that right.

While we greatly desire to fight on with Gov. Perry until the end, it is time to put our money where our mouth is in an attempt to avoid a repeat of the mistake of a divided conservative field. - evangelicals4perry.net

There remains a small chance that Gov. Perry will come back in South Carolina and enjoy a resurgence of his campaign heading into Florida and beyond but it is highly unlikely. Rather than waiting for the results of South Carolina before pursuing consolidation, we have chosen to make whatever small contribution we can before the votes are cast. Therefore, we are joining Evangelicals With Newt in endorsing Speaker Gingrich for President.

Rick Perry’s Final Act: King Maker? - Redstate
He can end his campaign now and leave a hero or stay in till Sunday and be a spoiler.... For a generation, Rick Perry was undefeated. Now he will go back to Texas and everyone who ever lost to Rick Perry will seek to settle old scores. It will be a tough, bloody fight. He will have to be ready for it.

Perry, however, has a potential trump card up his sleeve as he rebuilds political capital. It’s simple: he can drop out today, and endorse someone else. Doing so today, before the CNN Debate tomorrow, gives the news time to sink in.
Evangelicals With Newt

Jerry Brown defends California and his tax plan

Gov. Jerry Brown defended his plan to raise taxes in his State of the State address this morning, the second of his third term, depicting California as a place of opportunity ripe for investment in high-speed rail, water infrastructure and schools. - Sacramento Bee

"California is on the mend," he said.

Brown called his ballot measure to raise the state sales tax and income taxes on California's highest-earners "fair," and he suggested, as he has for weeks, that schools would suffer if higher taxes aren't approved.

RASMUSSEN: ROMNEY 30%, GINGRICH 27%

The race for the Republican presidential nomination is now nearly even with Mitt Romney still on top but Newt Gingrich just three points apart. - Rasmussen

(T)he story in the new numbers, taken Tuesday night, is Gingrich’s jump 11 points from 16% two weeks ago. Romney’s support is essentially unchanged from 29% at that time, while Santorum is down six points from 21%. Paul’s and Perry’s support is also unchanged. Former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman earned four percent (4%) of the vote at the start of the month but dropped out of the race this week. This suggests that many voters are still looking for an alternative to Romney and currently see Gingrich as that candidate.

The Income-Inequality Myth

Reports of skyrocketing incomes for the wealthy and stagnating wages for the rest are unfounded. - Michael Tanner/National Review Online

As we listen to President Obama, Occupy Wall Street, and much of the mainstream media working themselves into a lather over inequality in America, one thinks of “Harrison Bergeron,” the 1961 short story by Kurt Vonnegut that posited a society based on perfect equality, “not only equal before God and the law . . . equal every which way.” The government employed a “Handicapper General” to ensure that no one was smarter, more athletic, or more productive than anyone else. Beautiful people were forced to wear masks, athletic people had to carry weights, and intelligent people wore radios in their ears to interrupt their thoughts with loud noises.

Yet for all the sound and fury — and beating drums in Zuccotti Park — almost everything that people presume about inequality in America is wrong.

For example, nearly all reporting on income inequality in America has suggested that the incomes of the rich have been rising, while incomes for the rest of us have been stagnant or even declining. But that may represent a significant misreading of the data....

Poverty, of course, is a bad thing. But is inequality? After all, if we doubled everyone’s income tomorrow, we would eliminate an enormous amount of economic hardship. Yet, inequality would actually increase. ... a must read at National Review Online.
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◼ Michael Tanner is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute and author of Leviathan on the Right: How Big-Government Conservativism Brought Down the Republican Revolution

Barack Obama’s critics



Why are Barack Obama’s critics so smart? - Nile Gardiner/The Telegraph

Prominent Obama-backer Andrew Sullivan has ◼ a rather pompous piece in this week’s edition of Newsweek, which the magazine has subtly headlined on its cover page: “Why are Obama’s critics so dumb?”

In response to Sullivan’s provocative article, which has stirred up a good deal of debate in America, here are five reasons why President Obama’s conservative critics are significantly smarter in their approach and thinking than his failing Left-wing administration in Washington:

1. Obama’s critics have a far better understanding of the concerns of the American people and the mood of the country...

2. Obama’s critics reject big government and the ludicrous idea that bureaucrats know best...

3. Obama’s critics reject appeasement of America’s enemies, support America’s allies and don’t believe in apologising for their country...

4. Obama’s critics believe that a presidency should behave with decorum, and show respect for opposing views...

5. Obama’s critics know a gaffe-prone, embarrassing administration when they see one Read it all...

Obama Rejects Keystone Pipeline

TransCanada Can Reapply After Finding Alternate Route - Michelle Malkin

In other words, the Obama State Department is allowing TransCanada to reapply after they find a route for the pipeline that avoids the delicate habitat where the endangered 2012 election lives.

...At this point, the “alternate route” for the Keystone project’s oil appears to lead to China.

“There is a 50-year-old lie that has caused an entire people to become harlots to the political idea that government knows what is best.”



How about that “honest discussion on race”? - Darleen Click/Protein Wisdom

The Stop Online Piracy Act threat continues and starting Wednesday, January 18th, websites are joining the protest by going dark.

Protest on Web Uses Shutdown to Take On Two Piracy Bills - NYT

With a Web-wide protest on Wednesday that includes a 24-hour shutdown of the English-language Wikipedia, the legislative battle over two Internet piracy bills has reached an extraordinary moment — a political coming of age for a relatively young and disorganized industry that has largely steered clear of lobbying and other political games in Washington....

One response is Wednesday’s protest, which will direct anyone visiting Google and many other Web sites to pages detailing the tech industry’s opposition to the bills. Wikipedia, run by a nonprofit organization, is going further than most sites by actually taking material offline — no doubt causing panic among countless students who have a paper due.

It said the move was meant to spark greater public opposition to the bills, which could restrict its freedom to publish.

“For the first time, it’s very clear that legislation could have a direct impact on the industry’s ability to do business,” said Jessica Lawrence, the managing director of New York Tech Meetup, a trade organization with 20,000 members that has organized a protest rally in Manhattan on Wednesday. “This has been a wake-up call.”

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

WHITE HOUSE ON PARTIAL LOCKDOWN… #Occupiers Go Rogue – Chuck Smoke Bombs At White House (Video)



Obama’s Army Attacks White House– - Gateway Pundit

Over 1,000 #Occupy protesters gathered at the White House tonight and threw smoke bombs over the fence. This forced the White House to go on lockdown. Reporters were forced to go underground to the basement.

UPDATE: Police dispersed the leftist mob tonight. ◼ The Washington Post reported:

An apparent smoke bomb was thrown over the fence of the White House as hundreds of Occupy protesters massed outside the gates.

The crowds were dispersed Tuesday night, and U.S. Secret Service spokesman George Ogilvie says there were no arrests in the incident.

California: GOP responds to Jerry Brown's address before it's given

Republican legislative leaders rolled out their response to Gov. Jerry Brown's 2012 State of the State address Tuesday, slamming the Democratic governor for telling Californians that the"sky will fall" without higher taxes. - Sacramento Bee

"Today Governor Brown shared his vision for California for the year ahead," Assembly GOP leader Connie Conway says in a video. "Republicans were eager to hear his ideas for the many challenges facing our state. Unfortunately, the governor's vision is centered around one thing: higher taxes."

The only thing is Brown hasn't shared that vision yet.

A pre-taped video of Conway and Senate GOP leader Bob Huff responding to Brown's address was posted online today via the Senate Republican Caucus' Vimeo channel, more than 16 hours before Brown is scheduled to deliver the address.

Tough new Santorum ad: Let’s face it, Romney = Obama



Consider it payback for the Romney Super PAC ads that have Santorum so worked up today. - HotAir

You can go back to the days of double-digit tax increases, billion-dollar budget deficits, and record job loss, because in the three years before I took office Wisconsin lost 150,000 private sector jobs, or we can move forward and ultimately be in a position where we can move the state forward.



On the day Democrats file 1 million recall signatures, Governor Scott Walker does an interview with Rush Limbaugh. - Althouse
Yeah, we have a great choice here. We don't even know who the candidate is against us yet other than we know the real opponent will be this money coming in from out of state from these government unions, but in the end it's a real choice. You can go back to the days of double-digit tax increases, billion-dollar budget deficits, and record job loss, because in the three years before I took office Wisconsin lost 150,000 private sector jobs, or we can move forward and ultimately be in a position where we can move the state forward. We've had a net increase of jobs this year. We balanced the budget without tax increases. We did it the old-fashioned way. We made structural changes that think more about the next generation than just about the next election. And we were able to protect core services by making these reforms. That's where I think the majority of people in our state want to go... I think the facts, if given a chance to get out, will ultimately allow us to yet again earn the trust of a majority of people in our state.
Looks like Wisconsin heading for recall election - Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion
Wisconsin Democrats brag: The Walker recall effort has reached 1 million signatures - HotAir
Walker himself isn’t worried, though, so I won’t be, either. He was quoted by WTMJ as saying, “The optimist in me looks at that and says: The overwhelming majority of the people in the state chose not to sign that, and I earned the trust of the majority the last time. My hope is I will earn their trust again.”
◼ sign up to verify the petition signatures here: http://www.verifytherecall.com/

Obama jobs council releases new recommendations

If Obama treats the recommendations of his jobs council like he did the deficit-and-debt-reduction recommendations of the Erskine-Bowles debt commission, then this matters not at all. Nevertheless, the ideas his latest council presented are worth considering for their own sake: - HotAir
Obama’s jobs council is calling for an overhaul of the corporate tax structure, expansion of domestic petroleum drilling and a raft of reforms to federal regulation.

As first reported by Reuters, the new corporate tax rates should sink to “internationally competitive levels,” the report says, as well as an “all-in strategy” to cut reliance on foreign fuels by promoting domestic sources.

This is just the latest in the new stream of GOP-sounding policy proposals coming from the White House this year. Last week the proposal was to streamline the government by consolidating federal agencies.

Dead People and Other Voters

Dead People and Other Voters - Peter Hannaford on 1.17.12 for The American Spectator Online

Perhaps Eric Holder should be more interested in California's sham redestricting.

Years ago the Democrats learned that the surest way to win a tight election was to have just the right number of dead people ready to vote. It worked in Texas in 1948 and Illinois in 1960 and may have worked in South Carolina in 2010 if Attorney General Eric Holder hadn't left well enough alone.

In late December he announced that the U.S. Department of Justice would block South Carolina's new law requiring voters to present photo IDs at the polls, a direction he reiterated in a MLK Day appearance yesterday. Holder's stated reason for the blockage was that the law would put minorities and poor people at a disadvantage. He ignored the fact that photo IDs are required to board airplanes; to buy cigarettes or liquor (by young people) ; to buy certain over-the-counter medicines; and, in many stores, to buy things with a credit card. Never mind awkward facts when it's possible to depict the South Carolina legislature and Republicans in general as discriminatory.

Barack Obama: Typical Politician

Mr. President, please don’t play the race card in 2012...

Congressman Allen B. West to President Obama

...My message to President Obama is this: “Mr. President, your very presence in office demonstrates Dr. King’s dream has indeed come true. But how devastated would Dr. King be to know the Americans who are still fomenting racism at the highest levels are the very people for whom he fought for and died?”

Valerie Jarrett’s partisan speech at Atlanta’s Ebenezer Baptist Church may have violated the IRS tax rules for churches’ political activities, said a prominent free speech attorney.


Jarrett’s partisan pulpit speech may have violated IRS church-state rules - Neil Munro/Daily Caller (image source)

On Sunday President Barack Obama’s controversial aide, Valerie Jarrett, used the Ebenezer pulpit to tell the congregation that the jobs of teachers, police and firefighters “are now in jeopardy because Congress — well, let me be specific — because [of] the Republicans in Congress.”...Shortly after the religious service, the church hosted a voter registration drive for its mostly African-American congregation.

Mark Levin's Ameritopia


In Ameritopia: The Unmaking of America Levin asks, what is this utopian force that both allures a free people and destroys them? In the end, Levin’s message is clear: The American republic is in great peril. The people must now choose between utopianism or liberty. At Amazon

Are You Ready for Ameritopia? - The Other McCain
Ameritopia Explodes Into 2012 Campaign - Jeffrey Lord/American Spectator

Mark Levin has an uncanny knack for writing a book that isn't simply a popular bestseller. Levin's last book, Liberty and Tyranny: A Conservative Manifesto, became a major political player in the 2010 elections. Literary dynamite, if you will, tossed into the political scene with the fuse lit.

Now comes the just released Ameritopia, making it plain Mark Levin has done it again. In fact, without doubt, Ameritopia should be considered the companion book to Liberty and Tyranny.

And yet again it is the historical rarity of a book as major political player -- this time at the very heart of the 2012 presidential election itself.

Romney: Get rid of campaign contribution limits

Romney wavering on Florida debates?


Will frontrunner Romney keep debating? - Byron York/Washington Examiner (image source)

After a debate in which Republican frontrunner Mitt Romney faced attacks from all sides, the Romney campaign says it has not yet accepted invitations to participate in two high-profile debates leading up to the January 31 Florida primary, and a key Romney adviser is expressing fatigue and frustration over what he sees as a never-ending series of GOP debates.

"There are too many of these," Romney strategist Stuart Stevens said after Monday night's Fox News debate at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center. "We have to bring some order to it. We haven't accepted Florida…It's kind of like a cruise that's gone on too long."


He might not like getting beat up on stage, but at least he’s there to defend himself. - HotAir

SOPA protest: 7,000 and growing, say organizers

An estimated 7,000 websites are planning to go dark Wednesday as part of a mass protest against a pair of controversial anti-piracy bills — and opponents of the measures say the number is likely to increase. - Politico

A mix of watchdog groups, content creators and grass-roots activists on Tuesday touted the planned mass Internet blackout as the largest online “revolution” in the U.S. to date.

The online protest is aimed squarely at lawmakers pushing the Stop Online Piracy Act in the House and the PROTECT IP Act in the Senate and comes with a message: back off the bills or face the wrath of the same Internet community you’re trying to regulate.

“Tomorrow will be a big day of action,” said Tiffiniy Cheng, director of fightforthefuture.org, which is organizing the blackout. “The fight will continue until we get the final say from members of Congress that these bills will be dropped, and we’ll start from the beginning on how to balance protection of copyright with expression online.”

Gelareh Bagherzadeh, was studying molecular genetic technology at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. She was of Iranian descent and was very active in promoting Iranian women's rights

Med student shot to death near Galleria - Dale Lezon, Zain Shauk and Mike Glenn/Houston Chronicle

Bagherzadeh participated in protests against the Iranian government in 2010 and was among those calling for a change in the current regime as demonstrators in Tehran pushed for revolution.

At the time, she, like other outspoken protesters, requested that her last name not be used in a Houston Chronicle online video because she feared persecution.

"We want change and we want freedom in our country," she said in the video.

She was an organizing member of SabzHouston, a group that pushed for political change in Iran.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Newt Gingrich's Standing Ovation at South Carolina GOP Debate



The most enthusiastic response from the debate crowd Monday night came when Newt Gingrich challenged debate moderator Juan Williams - Weekly Standard
The old Newt is back, bashing moderators and refusing to back down. And the crowd goes wild. - Buzzfeed
S.C. Debate Moment of Night — Newt tackles race card play, slams it to ground - Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion

DEBATE WRAP:
TRANSCRIPT: Fox News Channel & Wall Street Journal Debate in South Carolina - FOX
South Carolina: The final five; Update: Non-Romneys attack, Romney deflects, stumbles - Michelle Malkin
SOUTH CAROLINA GOP DEBATE - The Other McCain
Romney put on defense at South Carolina debate, as GOP rivals fight for edge in state primary - FOX via Drudge
GOP Race Intensifies - Wall St. Journal
Romney unscathed from debate attacks - Reuters
Rivals attack Romney in testy Republican presidential debate - The Hill
Mitt Romney Stumbles, Newt Gingrich Shines - ABC

Morning Bell: Life-Changing Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

The greatest tribute to the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., is not to name a street in his honor or celebrate a national holiday. It is to recognize and support those who are working to carry out his vision, those who empower those facing the greatest obstacles through personal relationships that restore the fabric of civil society—without the need for federal government intervention. - Robert L. Woodson Sr./Heritage Morning Bell

DEBATE TONIGHT 6:00 (9:00 ET) on FOX

It's almost time. Tonight at 9:00 PM, the SCGOP will join Fox News Channel, The Wall Street Journal, and Twitter to present a "First in the South" Presidential Debate. I hope you'll tune in to this pivotal discussion on America's future!

Please take a moment to view this short history and preview of our critically important Presidential Primary:



South Carolina Republican Party via Facebook

South Carolina Pre-Debate Thread UPDATE: New Rick Santorum TV Ad Hits Romney as ‘Just Like Obama’ - The Other McCain
__________________

South Carolina Republican Presidential Debate - brevardtimes.com

The first live South Carolina GOP Presidential Primary Debate with all five remaining candidates: Rick Santorum, Mitt Romney, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, and Newt Gingrich, will air on Fox News tonight at 9 p.m. E.S.T. (6 p.m. P.S.T.) ◼ Live Stream
Location: Myrtle Beach Convention Center in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Sponsor: Fox News and the South Carolina Republican Party

Rick Santorum: Values


__________________Rick Santorum

ROMNEY TAKES OFF

Mitt Romney has a double-digit lead in Florida, ahead of his closest rival by 17 points, according to an American Research Group poll released on Monday. - Jonathan Easley/The Hill
Poll finds Romney pulling away in South Carolina - Cameron Joseph/The Hill

On the Sunday before the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, senior White House adviser Valerie Jarrett visited Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta to give a political speech, in support of her boss (Barack Obama) and congressional Democrats

Valerie Jarrett Blasts Republicans from the Pulpit - Daniel Halper/Weekly Standard

At the end of Sunday's sermon, after Jarrett had delivered her remarks to the congregation, the church held a voter registration drive.

Praise Be: First Family Starting to Attend Church Again - Kate Hicks/TownHall

I hate to be a cynic, but there does seem to be something fortuitous about the timing. The Obamas have rarely spend Sundays worshipping since moving into the White House, but this one marks the third in a month where they have attended service -- just in time for election season.

Newsweek vs OhioCRs, we like our version better. What do you think?


Via Ohio College Republican Federation on Facebook

If you're not on Facebook, you need to be. If you are, ◼ "LIKE" us on Facebook today, it's a great way to stay in touch, with Republicans in Humboldt, and in Ohio.

◼ Related: Conservative blogs take on Newsweek cover - Politico
(Sullivan) overlooks the degree to which Obama has discredited left-wing theory by exposing its flaws in practice–the real reason the left is distancing itself from him. - Joel B. Pollak/Breitbart's Big Government
Well, sure. We who are unhappy that unemployment has increased on Obama’s watch, that over-regulation has stymied economic growth, that our children now owe a $15 trillion debt that we can’t pay–hey, we’re just dumb! We obviously aren’t smart enough to understand how devastating our economy, unemploying millions of Americans and burdening our children with trillions of dollars in debt is really a great idea. - PowerLine
Oh, About that Newsweek Cover - PJ Media

‎"Let me be quite clear. If you want peaceful, pleasant, managing the decay in Washington. I'm the wrong person because what I stand for is such a disruption in the Washington establishment,” Gingrich said. “You can see it if you watch television. The talking heads are terrified that I'm going to win because they understand I represent the end of the game.” - Newt Gingrich


Via Florida With Newt on FacebookCalifornia With Newt

Tonight, the latest edition of Survivor: Republican Primary moves once again to Fox News Channel, which will televise and moderate tonight’s debate in South Carolina.

Debate preview: And then there were five - HotAir

This won’t be the final debate before Saturday’s primary in the Palmetto State; CNN will air one on Thursday evening, presumably with the same number of candidates, although at this rate … who knows?

When Michele Bachmann withdrew after the Iowa caucus, her absence arguably changed the dynamic of the debates. Bachmann had consistently attacked the other Republicans on stage, sometimes very effectively, and particularly Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich. Huntsman’s withdrawal will not change the debate dynamic much, if at all, unless Fox (and then CNN) allow for longer responses rather than more questions. It also could allow each candidate to answer every question, something that was impossible with seven, eight, and nine candidates on stage at the same time. The absence of Huntsman might mean fewer questions on China in particular, although Paul’s presence guarantees that foreign policy will remain a key debate topic throughout the rest of the primary debates. Otherwise, it’s going to basically be a repeat of the last several debates, and the big question will be whether one of Mitt Romney’s opponents can find a way to (a) trip him up, or (b) find a way to distinguish himself as the clear alternative to a Romney nomination.
__________________

South Carolina Republican Presidential Debate - brevardtimes.com

The first live South Carolina GOP Presidential Primary Debate with all five remaining candidates: Rick Santorum, Mitt Romney, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, and Newt Gingrich, will air on Fox News tonight at 9 p.m. E.S.T. (6 p.m. P.S.T.) ◼ Live Stream
Location: Myrtle Beach Convention Center in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Sponsor: Fox News and the South Carolina Republican Party

DSA Marxists Take Over the Occupy Movement: Plan ‘Spring Offensive’, With Widespread Occupations of State Capitols, Schools and Workplaces

DSA is working hard to sustain ‘Occupy’ over the winter in readiness for a major “spring offensive” largely directed at Republican controlled state capitols as they struggle to address massive budget problems. - Big Government

"This spring Occupy should move to the front lawns and rotundas of state capitol buildings to demand a change in state budget policies – and to demand federal government aid to states and localities."

MLK Day 2012: The Civil Rights Movement, The Left & The Legacy of MLK



Happy Martin Luther King Day - a day set aside to honor the most towering figure of our nation's civil right's movement begun in the 1930's. - Wolf Howling
MLK Day Blog Round-up
MLK Day proposal: Give the race card a rest - Michelle Malkin

Special Interview – James O’Keefe of Project Veritas

the NH First In The Nation Voter Fraud video that has gone viral in the blogosphere and has ignited a firestorm of commentary and angst... in NH - GrokTalk

Audio at the link

“This race has degenerated into an onslaught of negative attacks not worthy of the American people and not worthy of this critical time,” Huntsman said. “At its core, the Republican Party is a party of ideas, but the current toxic form of our political discourse does not help our cause.”





Jon Huntsman drops out, endorses Mitt Romney - Juana Summers/Politico

“For our nation to move forward together with new leadership and unity, the Republican Party must first unite,” Huntsman said, explaining his support of the former Massachusetts governor.

...And though he’s now switching his support to Romney, Huntsman spent the last few months intensifying his criticism of the former Massachusetts governor and poll leader that’s included swipes at Romney’s own divisive rhetoric and his changing views on issues. Last week in New Hampshire, Huntsman said Romney’s remark about liking to fire people made him “pretty much unelectable.”

Huntsman: A boutique candidacy that didn't sell - Byron York/Washington Examiner

A Fitting Finale to the Huntsman Flop - The Other McCain (video source)

Another consistent theme of Huntsman’s candidacy also continued until its end: His final campaign press conference was lavishly covered by the media. Multiple network cameras, dozens of press photographers and scores of reporters were on hand for the 11 a.m. event in Room 202 of the Sheraton Convention Center on Oak Street. Among the faces I recognized in the media swarm: Byron York of the Washington Examiner, Danny Yadron of the Wall Street Journal, Dan Balz of the Washington Post, Michelle Goldberg of Newsweek and Carl Cameron and John Roberts of Fox News.

Huntsman’s media coverage was always grossly disproportionate to his support among Republican voters. He was the subject of glowing profiles in the mainstream press and treated with deference in network TV interviews. Yet despite his enviable media coverage, Huntsman never got out of the single digits in national polls of likely GOP primary voters. Strangely enough, however, his poll numbers were always deemed minimally sufficient to include him in televised debates.

Lots of agreement at Congressional candidate forum

The candidates vying for the open seat in the newly created 2nd Congressional District found a lot of common ground when they met at the Mateel Community Center on Sunday. - Mary Anderson/Redwood Times/Times-Standard

The candidate forum was organized and sponsored by the Redwood Caucus, led by resident Dave Sky. The three-hour program was broadcast on KMUD Redwood Radio and KZYX, Mendocino, and on public access television.

The candidates are Susan Adams, Dan Roberts, Brooke Clarke, Tiffany Renee, Stacy Lawson, Andy Caffrey, John Lewallen, Jared Huffman, Norman Solomon, and Dr. William Courtney.

The Obama chief of staff turnover is indicative of a failed management style at the top that sends the most skilled Washington operatives scurrying for the exits as soon as they can find the door

4 chiefs of staff in under 3 years? - Rick Manning/The Hill

So into the breach steps Jack Lew, someone whom few know, but someone whom the AFL-CIO knows well from his days as the New York University (NYU) executive vice president. In 2004, Lew emailed full-time NYU faculty to remind them of their duty to report for work even if a strike took place. At the time, a strike by adjunct professors was looming. Lew still expected full-time faculty to do their jobs even if they were personally opposed to crossing picket lines....

Yep, new Obama Chief of Staff Jack Lew is officially a union-buster. Should make for an interesting nine months on the job — until Obama finds his replacement.

Senator Tom Davis endorses Ron Paul

SC Senator Tom Davis has announced his endorsement of Ron Paul, a candidate he feels can beat Barack Obama while staying true to Republican Party principles. - WMBF

During a press conference in Myrtle Beach Sunday night, Davis announced his endorsement of candidate Ron Paul, saying Dr. Paul has fought a lonely battle in Washington against crony capitalism.

Taking to the podium after receiving his endorsement, Paul told the crowd that showed up at the Pallisades Ballroom in Myrtle Beach Sunday that, "We will do well next Saturday."

This just in: Barack Obama wins in '12

President Barack Obama will win re-election in 2012. The reason he'll win? He knows who he is. - John Kass/Chicago Tribune

And the Republican politicians don't know who they are. They've forgotten what they're about, or perhaps like some isolated tribe, they've lost the language necessary to explain it to themselves.

Their voters know this and don't really believe them anymore....

What's bothersome is that I disagree with almost every single Obama policy, often vehemently, because what he's doing amounts to feeding handfuls of steroids to the federal leviathan gorging on our individual rights and freedoms.

But being anti-Obama isn't enough to vote him out. Republican voters have to believe, and I don't think they do. They see the game unfolding. And they don't want to be suckers again.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Poll confirms Dems' uphill battle in Nebraska

When Sen. Ben Nelson, D-Neb., announced his retirement, Democrats received a quick reminder of how bleak 2012 could prove for their Senate prospects. - David Freddoso/Washington Examiner

Democrats' best hope in Nebraska, many have said, would be for former Sen. Bob Kerrey, D to return and run for his old seat...Magellan Strategies, a Republican firm of whose work I am not really a fan, has released the first poll that I am aware of testing Kerrey in head-to-head matchups against the two leading Republican candidates. In both cases, he loses and fails to pull more than 40 percent support....

Even factoring in the Republican lean that Magellan's polls tend to carry, this is an ugly poll, considering that Kerrey is probably the best known and most revered Democrat in the state. For Republicans, this means they might not have to worry too much about who among their primary candidates is "more electable."

But for Democrats, this has a deeper strategic significance. If they begin the 2012 cycle ceding two seats, their odds of holding the Senate majority are very slim.

The Republican Party is beefing up its minority outreach nationwide and preparing to put its rising Hispanic stars on the campaign trail amid concerns that tough immigration rhetoric in the presidential primary is taking on an increasingly anti-Hispanic tone.

Republicans to spotlight Hispanics on stump - Jeri Clausing/AP via Washington Times

A senior Israeli official voiced disappointment in the Obama administration on Sunday, saying "election-year considerations" lay behind its caution over tough Iran sanctions sought by U.S. legislators.

Netanyahu deputy "disappointed" with Obama on Iran - Reuters

Moshe Yaalon, Israel's vice prime minister, contrasted the administration's posture to that of France and Britain, which he said "are taking a very firm stand and understand sanctions must be imposed immediately."

US military chief to Israel as Iran tension grows - AP News

Israel considers a nuclear-armed Iran to be an existential threat because of its nuclear program, missile capabilities, support for anti-Israel militants in Lebanon and Gaza and frequent references by its president to the destruction of Israel.

Israel has repeatedly hinted it might take military action if international sanctions fail to stop Iran's nuclear development.

Huntsman to Drop Out, Endorse Romney

The editorial board of the South Carolina paper The State would have liked to have had this information before they published their Huntsman endorsement this morning. - Michelle Malkin
Huntsman could bring us back together - The State
Huntsman dropping out. Endorsing Romney. - Althouse
According to National Journal, the often strange campaign of Jon Huntsman will come to an end tomorrow in a formal withdrawal from the Republican presidential nomination race. Huntsman plans to endorse Mitt Romney on his way out - HotAir
Huntsman to drop out of the race - neoneocon
Huntsman Will End Bid - National Journal

The endorsement will take place at 11 a.m. EST at the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce in Myrtle Beach, S.C., where Huntsman had previously scheduled several campaign events on Monday.

Jarrett was an early supporter of Obama’s political career. From her post at the nexus of Chicago business and politics, she was helpful in introducing the ambitious state senator to rich and well-connected figures. The association was not without embarrassment, however. Jarrett was an occasional collaborator with the developer Antoin Rezko, whose 2006 arrest for public corruption became a shallow pothole in Obama’s road to the White House.

The Worst White House Aide: Valerie Jarrett’s perfect record . . . for giving bad advice. - Matthew Continetti/Weekly Standard

...One of Obama’s more flowery hagiographers, journalist Richard Wolffe, divides the administration into “revivalists,” who want the president to be true to the spirit of hope and change, and “survivalists,” who believe compromise is necessary in a divided country. Jarrett is the leader of the revivalists, and her fingerprints are on every blunder and boo-boo the White House has ever made....

The House is lost, Obama’s reelection looks dicey, but Jarrett is flying high. In one sense she is the most successful Obama courtier of them all: She has outlasted her rivals. Gibbs is gone. Internal clashes led to Emanuel’s sudden discovery that he had always wanted to be mayor of Chicago. Emanuel’s replacement, fellow Chicagoan Bill Daley (brother of Richie), was muscled out last week; word is he fought with Jarrett too....

Obama Adviser Valerie Jarrett Described As - Ulsterman

2012 Primary Schedule

The 2012 GOP primary/caucus schedule - 2012presidentialelectionnews.com

January 3.......Iowa (caucus)
January 10......New Hampshire (primary)
January 21......South Carolina (primary)
January 31......Florida (primary)
February 4......Nevada (caucus)
February 4–11..Maine (caucus)
February 7......Colorado (caucus)
..................Minnesota (caucus)
..................Missouri (primary) w/not count for delegates
February 28....Arizona (primary)
..................Michigan (primary)
March 3.........Washington (caucus)
March 6, (Super Tuesday)
..................Alaska (caucus)
..................Georgia (primary)
..................Idaho (caucus)
..................Massachusetts (primary)
..................North Dakota (caucus)
..................Ohio (primary)
..................Oklahoma (primary)
..................Tennessee (primary)
..................Vermont (primary)
..................Virginia (primary)
March 6-10.....Wyoming (caucus)
March 10........Kansas (caucus)
..................U.S. Virgin Islands (caucus)
March 13........Alabama (primary)
..................Hawaii (caucus)
..................Mississippi (primary)
March 17........Missouri (GOP caucus) will determine delegates
March 18........Puerto Rico (primary)
March 20........Illinois (primary)
March 24........Louisiana (primary)
April 3..........District of Columbia (primary)
..................Maryland (primary)
..................Wisconsin (primary)
..................Texas (primary)
April 24.........Connecticut (primary)
..................Delaware (primary)
..................New York (primary)
..................Pennsylvania (primary)
..................Rhode Island (primary)
May 8...........Indiana (primary)
..................North Carolina (primary)
..................West Virginia (primary)
May 15..........Nebraska (primary)
..................Oregon (primary)
May 22..........Arkansas (primary)
..................Kentucky (primary)
June 5..........California (primary)
..................Montana (primary)
..................New Jersey (primary)
..................New Mexico (primary)
..................South Dakota (primary)
June 26.........Utah (primary)

The Disconnected President - SOTU one year ago

Flashback to last year's State of the Union speech - Doc Zero(John Hayward)

Beyond the fact-checkable whoppers fried up on the grill of desperate political necessity, the speech illustrated a disturbing ignorance of the way every facet of our economy and culture is connected. Barack Obama is a disconnected President, who lacks a basic understanding of the fantastically complex system he pretends to control. He’s a vain and egotistical man frantically waving his arms in front of a symphony he can barely hear, and claiming to be the conductor....

This State of the Union speech was the midterm exam in a long, painful lesson about the interdependence of politics, culture, and the economy. The challenge facing a democracy is to maintain a government that secures freedom against anarchy, without following its worst instincts into tyranny. Government is force, and the larger its programs become, the more it becomes fixated on compliance. The belief that we can let the government control some portions of our lives and industry, while the rest remain vibrant and creative, is a childish fantasy that should have died for good last night, before the spectacle of a man who doesn’t understand why his declared capitalist enemies aren’t producing enough jobs to boost his approval ratings. When he urged Americans to begin removing the obstacles to their success, he was too disconnected to understand that process already began in Massachusetts last week.

Local NAACP hosts MLK celebration

Local NAACP hosts MLK celebration - Times-Standard

The local branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People will be hosting a celebration in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. on Monday at noon at the Adorni Center, 1011 Waterfront Drive in Eureka.

There will also be a meeting at 3:30 p.m. today at the Boys & Girls Club, 3015 J St. in Eureka.
The club depends on members' donations and invites citizens who stand for tolerance, dignity and diversity to join together to protect their freedom.

Regular membership in the club is $30 per year for adults and $15 for youth. For more information, call 268-8287.

New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor’s new book, The Obamas, is chock-full of revelations about the First Couple. To save you the time of reading (and the cost of buying) Kantor’s account, we have compiled the Top 10 Obama Revelations that are contained in the book.

Top 10 Obama revelations - Human Events
1. Alice in Wonderland Ball
2. Michelle Obama’s Power
3. Michelle vs. Rahm
4. (Press Secty.)Gibbs vs. Jarrett and Michelle
5. Alice in Wonderland Ball Cover-up
6. Marital Quarrels
7. Michelle’s Clothes Fetish
8. Michelle’s Washington Hell
9. Bowling Embarrassment
10. Barbershop Sanctity

Economist Morici says even somebody as smart as the Secretary Chu, an award winning scientist shouldn’t be playing venture capitalist with tax dollars.



Eleven More Solyndras Ate $6.5 Billion of Taxpayer Dollars - Yid With Lid
The 11 Other Solyndras - Michelle Malkin

Yesterday there was another White House document dump regarding Solyndra’s bankruptcy filing just after the 2010 elections. While Solyndra is the crown jewel in the Department of Energy’s “you can’t make a green omelette without breaking a few hundred million taxpayer eggs” trial-and-error initiative, there are many other examples.

CBS News’ Sharyl Attkisson — who was one of the first reporters on the Solyndra trail — featured 11 other DoE loan recipients that either have or probably will take a Solyndra-style plunge and suck down $6.5 billion of taxpayer loans with them.

S&P Cuts Credit Ratings for 9 Euro Zone Nations

"Today's rating actions are primarily driven by our assessment that the policy initiatives that have been taken by European policy makers in recent weeks may be insufficient to fully address ongoing systemic stresses in the euro zone," S&P said in a press release announcing the downgrade. - CNBC

Standard & Poor's downgraded the credit ratings of nine euro zone countries, stripping France and Austria of their coveted triple-A status but not EU paymaster Germany, in a Black Friday 13th for the troubled single currency area.

The credit-rating agency put all 14 euro-zone nations — Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia, and Spain — on "negative" outlook for a possible further downgrade.

Germany was the only country to emerge totally unscathed with its triple-A rating and a stable outlook.

Downgrade of Debt Ratings Underscores Europe’s Woes - NYT
S&P Cuts Ratings on France, Italy, Other European Countries - FOX Business

Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday

Did you know...
◼ The Republican Party - the party of Abraham Lincoln - was borne in 1854 out of opposition to slavery.

◼ The party of Jim Crow and the Ku Klux Klan was, as Jeffrey Lord points out in an article at the WSJ, the Democratic Party.

◼ The 13th (abolishing slavery), 14th (due process for all citizens) and 15th (voting rights cannot be restricted on the basis of race) Amendments to the Constitution were enacted by Republicans over Democratic opposition.

◼ The NAACP was founded in 1909 by three white Republicans* who opposed the racist practices of the Democratic Party and the lynching of blacks by Democrats.

◼ In fairness, it was the Democrat Harry Truman who, by Executive Order 9981 issued in 1948, desegregated the military. That was a truly major development. Yet - the military has been the single greatest driving force of integration in this land for over half a century.

◼ It was Chief Justice Earl Warren, a former Republican Governor of California appointed to the Supreme Court by President Eisenhower, also a Republican, who managed to convince the other eight justices to agree to a unanimous decision in the seminal case of Brown v. Board of Education. That case was brought by the NAACP. The Court held segregation in schools unconstitutional. The fact that it was a unanimous decision that overturned precedent made it clear that no aspect of segregation would henceforth be considered constitutional.

◼ Republican President Ike Eisenhower played additional important roles in furthering equality in America. He "proposed to Congress the Civil Rights Acts of 1957 and 1960 and signed those acts into law. . . . They constituted the first significant civil rights acts since the 1870s." Moreover, when the Democratic Governor of Arkansas refused to integrate schools in what became known as the "Little Rock Nine" incident, "Eisenhower placed the Arkansas National Guard under Federal control and sent Army troops to escort nine black students into an all-white public school."

The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was championed by JFK - but it was passed with massive Republican support over 80%) in Congress and over fierce opposition from Democrats who made repeated attempts at filibuster. Indeed, 80% of the vote opposing the Civil Rights Act came from Democrats.( Women were added to the Act as a protected class by a Democrat who thought it would be a poison pill, killing the legislation. To the contrary, the Congress passed the Act without any attempt to remove the provision....

◼ Martin Luther King Jr. was the most well known and pivotal Civil Rights activist ever produced in America. His most famous speech, "I Had A Dream," was an eloquent and stirring call for equality. You can find it here. Rev. King was, by the way, a Republican.

◼ h/t, and credit to: Wolfhowling, who compiled this wonderful collection of links: Standing At The Crossroads - Identity Politics, Multiculturalism & The Melting Pot (Updated & Bumped)
◼ article in WSJ
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Monday, January 16 is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is a United States federal holiday marking the birthday of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It is observed on the third Monday of January each year, which is around the time of King's birthday, January 15.

* To advance civil rights for blacks, Republicans started the NAACP on February 12, 1909, the 100th anniversary of the birth of Abraham Lincoln. The first black head of the NAACP was black Republican James Weldon Johnson who became general secretary in 1920 and wrote the lyrics to the song "Lift Every Voice and Sing". Republicans also founded the HBCU's (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) because Democrats were trying to prevent blacks from getting a good education.