October 31, 2010

Helping Out Tim Burns in PA-12

Tim Burns is running for Congress in the congressional district of PA-12. The only poll I could see in October has his opponent ahead by 7, but the sample size seemed a bit small. Tim Burns needs your vote.

In his own words, here's why he's a better choice than Mark Critz.

Don't forget, Mark Critz likes Obamacare.

Reminder: You are a mob.

This is what they think of you.  You are a right wing extremist mob. A mob at the behest of the GOP.

They think you are a mindless minion and do not have any legitimate concern for the country because after all, the country is doing just fine. Meanwhile, they are just community activists.

Don't be an enabler and vote for anyone beholden to groups like these unions. You are not a mob. You are a person like many others, concerned about the dire consequences of power hungry government and bloated bureaucracy. That's all.

Helping Out Brian Dubie

Back in September, after an extremely close Democratic primary, Peter Shumlin was running narrowly ahead of Republican Lieutenant Governor Brian Dubie in Vermont’s gubernatorial race. This is Vermont. Back then the gap was less than 5 points among likely voters. Like many other Republicans in this cycle, Dubie understands that the economy is the topmost item on voters' minds.



Even Democrats see it;

Vote for Dubie.

October 30, 2010

Jon Stewart Rally? Yawn.

Really, no links, no thoughts, no writing about it, because it is a distraction from stories that merit coverage.

Like this one.

John Stewart rally to fool the youth of America - I've already spent too many words on it.

NPR, Nina Totenberg - Wait, what now?!

Hypocrisy alert: NPR is okay with firing Juan Williams because he's afraid of getting on an airplane when there are visibly Muslim-garbed people on his flight, even though Juan himself recognized this fear as an issue in the same comment. But Nina Totenberg, she of the hope that Jesse Helms' grandchildren get AIDS, steps in it again and I guarantee you she won't get called on this one either.

Helping Out Charles Djou in HI-1

Charles Djou is the Republican Congressman representing HI-1.  This is tough territory for Republicans but Djou has a shot a pulling out a victory over the once heavily-favored Colleen Hanabusa.  Please throw your support behind Djou, and get out there and vote for this;

Because this is a view of the alternative;

Helping Out Roy Blunt

Just because Missouri Republican senate contender Roy Blunt has a decent lead in the polls over Robin Carnahan doesn't mean you can take it easy.  Please be sure you make it out to vote for him if he's on your ballot.

He needs your vote, because this,

is better than this;

It's come to this: Obama the bully

President Obama has really gone and added the bully to the bully pulpit (Follow the link to see the irony of the term as it applies to the White House).  After his "I won" comments to Republicans following his Presidential victory, after his repeated demagoguery and locking the Republicans out of talks while trying to convince people they had no ideas, after castigating the Supreme Court in the State of the Union because he knew better than they did on 'special interests' and election spending, after endless examples of how he doesn't give a flying frappucino about what Republicans think. Why?  He's a bully.

That's only part of what bullies do - they put people down and force things to go their own way.  There's no interest in talk or compromise - it's about glorifying themselves, putting others down, and forcing their will on others.  But it becomes more evident in the context of what's happening now.  With the GOP poised to hit Democrats with a truly big wave (follow the link to see a great video of a rogue wave capsizing a boat), the real characteristics of a bully get displayed.

Helping Out Charlie Baker

In Massachusetts, Charlie Baker is running for governor.  It's a close race, and he's within striking distance of Democrat Deval Patrick.  That leads me to the following question. Okay Massachusetts, do you really want Deval Patrick as your governor? This guy?

Seriously, this guy??

How about a real change? How about helping out Charlie Baker so he can work for Massachusetts?

October 29, 2010

Helping Out Chris Dudley

In Oregon the governor's race is neck and neck.  Republican Chris Dudley is neck-and-neck with Democrat John Kitzhaber.  There's plenty of reasons to want Chris Dudley to win.



and ideas.

Vote for Chris Dudley.

Helping Out John Kasich

The Ohio governor race is pretty tight.  Right now Republican John Kasich holds a 3 point lead over Democrat Ted Strickland.  John Kasich understands what matters to Ohio voters - jobs, jobs, jobs.

He talks about it here;

He also discusses integrity;

And why Ted Strickland is not the man for the job;

Friday Musical Interlude - History Repeating

The Propellerheads and Shirley Bassey - History Repeating.

Think 1994 and the Contract with America. Think of the Republican tide. Now think of history repeating itself, and do your part to make it happen America. Catch the wave.  Go out and vote in the midterm elections.

October 28, 2010

Helping Out Tom Emmer

Republican Tom Emmer may be a bit of a dark horse, but the race for Minnestoa governor is very tight in the home stretch. According to Rasmussen,
The race to be Minnesota's next governor remains a close one with Republican Tom Emmer running neck-and-neck with Democrat Mark Dayton, while support for Independence Party candidate Tom Horner appears to be fading.

A new Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of Likely Voters in the state finds Dayton still barely ahead, with 44% support to Emmer's 41%. Horner now picks up 10% of the vote.
For Emmers, jobs are priority #1:

And that means better education;

and most importantly, he's no Mark Dayton;

Helping Out Paul LePage

Paul LePage is running for governor of Maine.  He's only 3 points up on Libby Mitchell.  He needs your help and more importantly he needs your vote.  He's a common sense conservative, and Maine could use that.

Want to know more?

His opponent, on the other hand, is a big spender of taxpayer money.

October 27, 2010

Helping Out Daniel Webster

In the congressional district of FL-8, bellicose and uncouth Democrat Alan Grayson is in danger of losing his seat to Republican contender Daniel Webster, in a close FLorida race. Daniel Webster needs your help defeating Alan Grayson.

You DO remember Alan Grayson, don't you?

Now why have that, when you can have this;

From a candidate who understands the reality of the math;

Helping Out Duke Aiona

Duke Aiona , a Republican governor for Hawaii? It's possible.  It's margin of error time for this race. According to Rasmussen,
The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of Likely Voters in the Aloha State shows Abercrombie picking up 49% of the vote, while Aiona earns 47% support. One percent (1%) prefer some other candidate in the race, and four percent (4%) are undecided. 
These numbers move the race from Solid Democrat to a Toss-Up in the Rasmussen Reports Election 2010 Gubernatorial Scorecard.
In late June, Abercrombie held a 58% to 32% lead over Aiona. The first survey of the race in March found Abercrombie, a congressman for nearly 20 years who stepped down to run for governor, leading Aiona 54% to 31%.
Aiona understands the unique needs of Hawaii,

and also the similarities with other states when it comes to wasteful government spending.

Vote Aiona.

Helping Out Meg Whitman

You're probably thinking to yourself, this woman is a billionaire, she doesn't need my help.  But Meg Whitman needs your help and your vote for governor of California against 70's school liberal Jerry Brown. She's behind, but not very far.  She needs that last big push from her supporters.

Please California, don't make another mistake, your state is bleeding money.  Support Meg Whitman.

On debt,

On everything,

she's a common sense leader. California really needs that.  As opposed to this;

Helping Out Bob McConnell

Bob MccConnell is running for Congress in Colorado district CO-3.  He needs your support.  He's a solid conservative, endorsed by Sarah Palin. Colorado needs a common sense representative and in this last week, where some of the races are tightening, make sure you give him any support you can.

He's targeting the national debt.

He's a Tea Party guy;

And while he thinks the unfunded liabilities of Social Security and Medicare need to be addressed, he is not willing to forgo the commitments already made in those areas. That's both sensible and honorable.

Please vote for Bob McConnell on November 2nd.


With so much attention on the Congressional blowout most everyone is expecting, the Democratic party firewall is no longer Congress, it's the Senate. In my latest series of Helping Out posts, I started with Senators because it is entirely possible that 10 seats is still an achievable target for Republicans in the Senate. Why 10?

Helping Out Allen West

Allen West is such a stand out candidate there is no reason this should be a swing race.  Yet FL-22 is listed as a swing race by RealClearPolitics.  Things look to be going Mr. West's way, but with 2 polls and 2 leaders there's no reason to lighten up on the throttle at this point.  Allen West needs your help to bring this district home for America.

Why vote for West?  There's this;

And this;

And reason to eschew his opponent, Klein;

October 26, 2010

Helping Out Liz Carter

In GA-4 congressional district in Georgia, Republican Liz Carter is running against Democrat Hank Johnson.  Remember the guy who thought that 8000 Marines being stationed on Guam would cause the island to tip over? That's Hank Johnson.  Missed that? Take a look;

Liz Carter can use your help - donations, volunteers and of course, your vote.  Contrast Hank with a little common sense from Liz;

There's plenty of reasons to correct the situation in this district. Remember to do your part. If you still aren't convinced, watch this for a few more reasons.

Helping out Matt Doheny for NY23

Remember congressional district NY23?  That's the district where in a special election last fall, establishment and RINO Republican Dede Scozzafava dropped out of the race and endorsed the Democrat instead of conservative candidate Doug Hoffman.  This time around, Doug Hoffman did what Scozzafava would not. He dropped out but also endorsed the Republican candidate Matt Doheny.  Thanks to that gracious move, the polls have tightened up into toss up range.

Matt Doheny really needs your help.  He gets it;

His opponent, does not;

Helping Out Tom Tancredo

Independent candidate for governor in Colorado Tom Tancredo has made a stunning late charge at Democratic hopeful John Hickenlooper.  With just over a week to go, he's behind 42% to 38% among likely voters.  Tancredo a conservative Republican entered the race relatively late when it looked like the GOP candidate in the race, Dan Maes was not going to be a serious challenge.  By offering himself as a credible alternative, Tancredo might be able to take take the race for conservatives.  It depends on Maes voters and undecideds breaking for Tancredo.

Governorships are important, especially this year.  Get out and vote for Tancredo.  Here's some reasons why.

The economy;

Some views on immigration;

Then there's this;

Helping Out Martha Roby

Republican candidate Martha Roby is running for Congress in Alabama's 2nd district trying to unseat Bobby Bright. Recently the Cook Political Report moved this race from a Lean Democrat race to a toss up race.  Martha could use your help for a push across the finish line in this race.  Bobby Bright claims to not want to support Nancy Pelosi for speaker.  But where does he stand on the issues?  That's what really matters.

As Roby points out;

Whereas she is clear in what she stands for;

And clear on the big differences between the two of them.

Vote for Roby, and if you can, volunteer to help her campaign out.

Helping Out Thomas Foley

In Connecticut, Thomas Foley is running for governor and is within 4% of of Democrat candidate Dan Malloy.  Foley could use your help.  According to Rasmussen;
The race has tightened since late September when Malloy held a 10-point lead. Earlier this month, he held a narrower 49% to 44% edge over Foley. In surveys dating back to May, Malloy has consistently been the front-runner, with support ranging from 38% to 50%. Foley, in those same surveys, has earned 33% to 45% of the vote.
Thomas Foley deserves your support.  Simply put, here's why;

He understands that jobs are the most important issue right now.

And Dan Malloy, his opponent, is focused on green energy stuff. Why now Dan?

October 25, 2010

Take a hint America!

Well, at least liberal America.  The city of Toronto Canada, a very liberal city, has elected a conservative mayor tonight.  In particular, coming off of a socialist mayor, they've elected a fiscally conservative mayor.  And he won handily, despite polls calling the race getting very tight in the last week.
TORONTO (Reuters) - Toronto voters on Monday elected conservative Rob Ford as mayor of Canada's biggest city, tilting away from their recent liberal leanings and opting for his platform of small government, fewer taxes and big spending cuts.

Ford, a suburban city councilor and businessman, defeated George Smitherman, a former Liberal Party deputy premier of Toronto's province of Ontario. Ford was victorious on a platform that promised to "stop the gravy train at City Hall."

Ford drew 47 percent of the vote, compared to Smitherman's 35 percent, with no other candidate getting more than 12 percent, according to official vote tallies.

"People just kept telling me ... you're the only one that I trust that can get this City Hall spending under control," Ford, who was supported by provincial and federal Conservative Party figures, said on local television following his victory.
If Toronto Canada is doing that, if Britain is trending conservative and France and Germany are inching in that direction, what dynamic is left for the left? I'm not getting overconfident, but I'm feeling a wave election for Congress this midterm.

Helping Out Ron Johnson

Ron Johnson is poised to win the Senate seat for Wisconsin.  He needs your support.  Go vote for him on November 2nd, and if you can volunteer to help him out, consider doing so.  Russ Feingold is a tough opponent but Ron Johnson is a better choice.

He understands the real world;

He understands the math;

And he understands what he's up against.

Help him out.

Democrats: anything but our record!

From outside spending, to John Boehner, blame Bush, Rush Limbaugh, Tea Partiers are crazy and jobs saved, the Democrats have thrown so many red herrings out there for public consumption that it's starting to look like a Gulf Oil Spill but in fish.

It's the ultimate Wizard of Oz 'don't look behind the curtain' approach to the election. Whether it is born of panic or not doesn't matter because it doesn't seem to be working. Misdirection is an indicator that Democrats have been more than unwilling to campaign on what they've done for the last two years. That shows a lack of confidence in their own agenda. Perhaps even a lack of faith. So really, why do they want to retain power? It must be for other reasons. Either personal or dogmatic, doing what was best for American economic malaise was not what was (or is) on their minds.

But that's what's on the public's minds. And that is why this will be a wave election. Not 40 seats in Congress. Likely north of 60. And possibly a Senate takeover as well. It's not even about a love of the GOP. It's about a voter lack of faith in those who have a lack of faith in their own ideas. It's about sharing that lack of faith in their approach.

The GOP may be the party of 'no' in Democrat eyes but right now that meshes well with the will of the people - Americans today are a people of 'no'. If the Democrats are thinking 'anything but our record', Americans are agreeing - anything but your record.

Helping Out Joe Miller

Joe Miller is running for senate in Alaska, and he's facing an unexpectedly strong write in challenge from liberal Republican Lisa Murkowski, whom  he has already defeated in the GOP primary.  Murkowski has a big name recognition factor in the state, but Miller is the better candidate.

He's also the more in touch candidate with Alaska's conservatives;

And Murkowski is soft, and getting softer on Obamacare repeal;

Not to mention the fact that she's having a hissy fit;

Helping Out Mark Kirk

In the latest Rasmussen poll in Illinois, Republican Mark Kirk holds onto a slim lead over Democrat Alexi Giannoulias. He needs your help. He needs your vote. He deserves your vote.

Here's one reason why.

And then there's this.

And this bit of uncomfortableness;

October 24, 2010

Helping Out Pat Toomey

In Pennsylvania, a quality Republican candidate in Pat Toomey is facing a slight surge by liberal Joe Sestak.  He needs your support. Please be sure to vote for Pat Toomey on November 2nd.

Toomey gets it;

He knows the truth behind the economic situation;

And of course, Sestak is not the greatest of choices.

Helping Out Ken Buck

In Colorado, Republican Ken Buck needs your support in a tight race with Democrat Michael Bennet.  Buck can use your vote.

Here's why he deserves it;

And this too;

And then there's this tripe.

Helping Out Linda McMahon

Linda McMahon is gaining ground in the Connecticut Senate race with Dick Blumenthal.  She needs your vote and your support.  This is a seat Republicans need to win.  Why?

This says it all;

But here's some bonus reasons;

and of course this;

where he really meant to say this;

October 23, 2010

Helping Out Carly Fiorina

Carly Fiorina is in a tight race with far left ideologue Babara Boxer for Senate in California. Fiorina deserves your support. Help her out if you can, donate, vote for her, volunteer - whatever you can do.

Here's some reasons why:

And this,

And of course this;

Helping Out Dino Rossi

Dino Rossi is in a tight race for with Democrat pork queen Patty Murray.  Please support Rossi. Here's part of the reason why;

And then there's this;

And this;

Helping Out Sharron Angle

I haven't been as able to spend the time to help out conservative candidates as much as I'd like to, or have in the past.  But I can still do a small part by posting some support for candidates.  Here's my first attempt, for Sharron Angle in Nevada, trying to unseat Harry Reid.

This is a very important election for Nevada and for America.  Please do your part to help out Sharron Angle.

Then there's this.

And he says taxes are um, voluntary??

Oops: Biden Accuses GOP Of Spending $200 Billion

From RealClearPolitics Video, (go take a look at the video, I'll wait) VP Joe Biden Accuses GOP Of Spending $200 Billion: “I was amazed at the amount of money, this $200 billion of money that is — where there’s no accountability”.

Now, when you are speaking about accountability, and using specific dollar amounts, don't they have to be from somewhere other than out of your...thin air?

To give you a sense of size, according to the IMF, the entire Gross Domestic Product of Egypt, for 2009, was roughly $188 billion. That's a country of over 81 million people. In other words, the money being spent by the right on this election is bigger than every cent spent in Egypt an anything in the entire year of 2009. Really?  REALLY?

Others like Open Secrets reported, had estimated the total combined spending at $3.7 billion.  Sure, that amount may have changed, but $200 billion?

Can this man really be that dim, or was this a deliberate scare tactic?  Either he's to vapid to be Vice President, or else too dishonest.  Someone should follow that man around with a lie detector every day, because the American people need to know which is the real truth, dangerously uninformed, or blatantly dishonest.

Notable and timely quote

"I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man."

~Thomas Jefferson

Why this quote? Because.

October 22, 2010

Friday Musical Interlude For Tea Partiers

This song was written about anti-Semitism.  Today, the left is probably regretting that it tried to portray Tea Partiers as a lunatic fringe. Disparage the people at your peril.  Meanwhile, conservatives are the ones supporting Israel rather than Hamas these days. 

While I will resist the temptation to call the far left a lunatic fringe, it's clear at this point that Tea Partiers are not one. That will be proven in just a few days.

Not to mention what NPR thinks of Juan Williams...

October 21, 2010

Juan Williams fired. Liberal intimidation extends to the left too.

Everyone on the right side of the blogosphere has already talked about this. I'm not going to be the first to offer this opinion but I think it bears repetition.

While I typically disagree with Juan Williams, his firing for expressing a personal feeling was wrong and he has been done an injustice.

There. I said it. I'm not leaping to his defense because NPR is a very liberal organization and Juan Williams supposedly said something politically incorrect. I'm not leaping to his defense because he said it on Fox news. His firing was simply wrong. It is ironic that conservatives are coming to his defense and liberals seem to be happy he's gone because he went off the p.c. reservation. That's not universally true of liberals, I should add.

But my point is that unlike many other liberals who go on Fox, Juan tried to operate with journalistic integrity. His comments were typically well phrased and reasonably thought out. Definitely liberal, and 99% of the time I disagreed. But I respected, even prior to last night, how he operated. No name calling, no denigrating (that I saw), and talking based on facts instead of p.c. emotion.

Shut down free speech, even on the left, liberal elite? Just before the election too? People are onto you. Dumb move.

President Obama blowing smoke

From, of all places, MSNBC;
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is crediting its anti-recession stimulus plan with creating up to 50,000 jobs on dozens of wind farms, even though many of those wind farms were built before the stimulus money began to flow or even before President Barack Obama was inaugurated.
Out of 70 major wind farms that received the $4.4 billion in federal energy grants through the stimulus program, public records show that 11, which received a total of $600 million, erected their wind towers during the Bush administration. And a total of 19 wind farms, which received $1.3 billion, were built before any of the stimulus money was distributed. ( See a list of the projects here.)

Yet all the jobs at these wind farms are counted in the administration's figures for jobs created by the stimulus.
Why is MSNBC breaking this story? One of two reasons, I suspect.  Either they are closest to the green base and they know their audience will be interested in it or (2) nobody watches MSNBC, so it minimizes the damage to the President in the pre-election climate.

What are the odds Keith Olbermann talks about this story tonight? And if a tree falls in a forest, does anyone hear it? I mean, besides Al Gore.

October 20, 2010

Quick note on the President's ditch

Is it just me or do the President's two most commonly referenced metaphors of late not go together in some way?

1. The Republicans drove the car into the ditch.

2. There are a bunch of shovel ready projects for the ARRA stimulus (or - oops, shovel ready doesn't mean what I thought it meant).

Ditch+shovel+President Obama? Make your own punchlines.

October 19, 2010

President Obama is in denial

President Obama is in denial.  He doesn't like what he sees going on in these midterms and he frustrated.  Clearly he needs to do something about it.  He's tried quite a few things already and they haven't worked or have worked marginally at best. He seems bereft of ideas, but apparently he's got one thing left.  What's his plan? Blame the voters. I'm going to go out on a limb and say that politically, that's a bad idea.

October 17, 2010

Sunday Reading

Reading.  Good stuff.
Some quality reading for Sunday, is linked to below.  Reading is never a bad thing, as long as you read with both an open mind AND a healthy dose of skepticism and questioning of the absolute veracity of what you read.

NOW What?  Jerry Brown gets the endorsement of the National Organization of Women despite unflattering comments out of the Brown campaign against his opponent Meg Whitman.  As much as I dislike Nancy Pelosi, I would never consider using that type of language to describe her.  Clueless would suffice.

Lest Republicans think a few tax cuts will keep the people happy, King Shamus suggests they think again.

Meanwhile, Paul is still frustrated over Democrat "stupidity" (his word, not mine.  I'm sticking with clueless...).  Bottom line, he catches a number of liberal obfuscations (that's lies for those of you who are clueless).  You gotta love Paul, he's not afraid to word things how he really feels about them.

Rasmussen is predicting that the GOP will win 55 seats in the House.  Hello 1994.  What's interesting is the Clinton campaign for Clinton that seems to be underway. Are the Clinton's using Obama's distance from the electorate as an excuse for a primary challenge in 2012?  Bill Clinton lost 54 seats in 1994.  I guess he felt he should have faced a Democrat primary challenge in 1996.

Nancy Pelosi, as An Ol' Broad points out, is the Queen of Clueless (see, I told you that was the worst I'd say). Full Disclosure: I have called her uncool too.

SecularStupidest ponders Constitutions and those who usurp them.  An interesting comparison involving China's Constitution.

Janeane Garofalo in hiding?  Come on out and call us racist idiots again. Please. Sorry, no link, but do you really want one for that?

Legal Insurrection asks how long has this been going on? He's talking about candidate Maurice Hinchey assaulting a reporter, not the song by ACE.  My answer?  At least this long.

Western Hero on the View from crazy land.  Why would the left think ranting and raving and demonizing is going to help their cause on November 2nd?  Probably because it's all they've really got.  No one is falling for the economic lies anymore.  Politicians are being held accountable, and Democrats aren't used to that.

October 16, 2010

Saturday Learning Series - Election Basics

Saturday Learning Series returns today with a brief look at elections. Here are a couple of simple explanations of the election process in the United States.   

Presidential elections

Voting patterns

October 15, 2010

A quick blog self analysis

I've been looking back over my blog statistics and made a few confirmations/discoveries of things that I already intuitively knew.  There have been 3 period that I had a lot of visitors to my blog.  The first period was when I was new.  I was writing a lot more essay style posts than at other times.  I have to say, that's what I'd prefer to write - more insightful, researched posts.  I had my greatest readership success at that time.  I'm not sure whether it was because I was new or because of what I was writing, but I was getting noticed.

Friday Musical Interlude - Man In Black

Johnny Cash and June Carter: Jackson

October 14, 2010

Poll: Democrats more extreme than Republicans

A new poll out, from The Hill, indicates that voters are more likely to see Democrats as extreme than Republicans. Who knew? How about all the Tea Part faithful who love the Constitution and the rule of law etc.?  Pretty sure they knew.
Likely voters in battleground districts see extremists as having a more dominant influence over the Democratic Party than they do over the GOP.

This result comes from The Hill 2010 Midterm Election Poll, which found that 44 percent of likely voters say the Democratic Party is more dominated by its extreme elements, whereas 37 percent say it’s the Republican Party that is more dominated by extremists.

The revelations in a survey of 10 toss-up congressional districts across the country point to problems for Democrats, who are trying to motivate a disillusioned base and appeal to independents moving to the GOP ahead of the Nov. 2 election.
For Democrats, reality bites (hard).

Military Ballots Matter

The state of corruption in Illinois (or IS Illinois) calls into question the suspicious nature of the fact that in that state, where a very close Senate race is being contested, the Democratic machine could be somehow pulling the strings to ensure that military voters are disenfranchised this cycle.  A slap on the wrist and a 'oops, my bad' after  a close Democrat victory does nothing to ensure that every vote counts.  Remember that one Democrats?

The U.S. Justice Department is investigating whether the state of Illinois missed the deadline for mailing absentee ballots to members of the military and other overseas American voters as part of a new federal overseas voting law.

Cris Cray, Director of Legislation at the Illinois State Board of Elections, says not all of Illinois' 110 jurisdictions were compliant with the 2009 Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment Act (MOVE).

The law requires every state to mail their absentee ballots 45 days prior to Election Day to overseas troops, government employees and other Americans who want to vote from abroad.
Cray says she is currently compiling data from each of Illinois' jurisdictions to determine which were compliant and which were delinquent. Cray said it's possible the ballots may not be counted because the state was tardy in sending them out...

Overseas ballots could be a deciding factor in Illinois' mid-term elections where recent polls show a tight U.S. Senate race between Republican Mark Kirk and Democrat Alexi Giannoulias. Republican Bill Brady has an edge over Democratic incumbent Pat Quinn for governor.
A post-electoral apology does not counter disenfranchisement of voters. This isn't about hanging chads. This about non-compliance and an apparent lack of effort to make sure that citizens of the state get to actually, you know, vote. Or worse, this is about circumventing democracy and trying to make it seem accidental. Surely this runs counter to democracy. It would seem a possibility that it is deliberately so.

Are You Cautiously Optimistic Yet?

Obama's recipe for Democrats' midterm disaster
Listening to conservative pundits talk about how well the Republicans are going to do this election cycle runs the gamut from the cautious who are projecting a possible take over Congress to the unbridled enthusiasm of a Dick Morris who has in the past mentioned 100 seats in Congress and more than 10 in the Senate.  Let's all hope he's right, but as some have argued, there could be a danger in setting the bar too high.  Anything short of 60 might now seem like a failure of conservatism.  I don't see how, but then again it would give the media a chance to try to knock the wind out of Republican sails and go back to the mantra of "it's an anti-incumbency election, not a knock on the Democrats or President Obama".  But at some point you have to get past the worry over some October surprise, over the worry  that most every poll is wrong and over the worry that some sort of self-induced mass Republican collapse is going to happen.  It's okay to be cautiously optimistic now.

October 13, 2010

Is Today The October Surprise Day?

Just about everyone thinks that there is some big October surprise coming from Democrats this month. That is in addition to a bunch of mini-October-surprises. I don't know if the Democrats have anything they can pull out this year, but far be it from me to say they won't try. After all, the villain-du-jour approach has largely fallen flat. Firing up the base has had only limited success, if any. The base has already been reduced to a husk of far left liberals at this point, the lost voters from the middle are the ones he should have been courting all along, with less far left policies in a center-right country. Of course that didn't fit with his agenda, so that approach is already long lost.

Is an October surprise imminent? I don't know if something is coming, but if it is, a day like today could very well be the day. It's a relatively slow news day. That's perfect for some supposed bombshell to unleash on Republicans. The thing is, it's probably a little early in the cycle to drop the big one. Doing something now gives Republicans a chance to counter the argument.  Remember in 2000 the Bush drunk-driving alert that came late in the game?  The best time it would seem is in the last week.  I've been a firm believer that in politics, having the last word makes a big difference.  Then again, the trends have been so Republican-friendly of late, they might need more than just a week if they want to turn things around.  Every day that passes is one less day the Democrats have a chance to turn things around.

I'm no expert at  political dirty pool, but it just seems a little too quiet today.

October 12, 2010

Don't Throw Things - The Video

As much as I understand the anger and frustration of Israelis with President Obama, as I said yesterday, don't throw things.  There was a piece on Israelis throwing shoes at the President.  Now there's video.

[Thanks to @secularstupiddd for the link and the video.]

Now if only we could get the President and other Democrats to stop throwing around baseless accusations, we'd be all set for a proper intellectual debate of the issues. Sadly, I'll throw out the opinion that it will never happen.

October 11, 2010

Don't throw things!

On my other blog, I posted this morning about Obama getting a book tossed at him.  He wasn't hurt - his supporters are always off target.  Now there's a story about shoes flying at him too.  You can read it all here.

The bigger point though, is don't throw things.  That's just bad.  And when you vote against the Democrats, don't call it throwing a temper tantrum.  Don't call it throwing out the trash.  It's just a return to common sense.  But just be civil while you do it.  Then again, I think most of my 6 readers get that...

Soros won't stop the GOP avalanche

George Soros won't stand in the way of the GOP avalanche.  Gee thanks George.  The quote in the NY Times is stark;
Mr. Soros, a champion of liberal causes, has been directing his money to groups that work on health care and the environment, rather than electoral politics. Asked if the prospect of Republican control of one or both houses of Congress concerned him, he said: “It does, because I think they are pushing the wrong policies, but I’m not in a position to stop it. I don’t believe in standing in the way of an avalanche.”
I have a question for Mr. Soros. If it's going to be an avalanche, but the policies are wrong in your mind, does that mean that you think the majority of voters are wrong-minded? Are they stupid Mr. Soros? Are they being fooled by slick advertising? Remember, many of these are the same people who voted for your guy last time around. So if they are easily swayed then your guy did the same thing last time to them and your liberal agenda might have had support a mile wide but it wasn't more than an inch deep.  I guess you know better than the rest of us Mr. Soros. I guess we haven't earned our liberty and we should leave the governing to the rich elite like yourself.

October 8, 2010

Another Presidential Advisor Bites the Dust. Hmmm.

The President's National Security Advisor is stepping down. General James Jones was expected to have a short shelf life anyway. But the hastening of the departure raises questions.

The story is here: http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2010/10/president_obamas_national_secu.html

Is this another instance of abandoning a sinking ship? The article raises the question of the Woodward book and possible comments from Jones. Is it a forced resignation? Is the President that thin skinned that he would let someone go at a politically inconvenient moment? Talk about bad timing. This sends an abandon ship signal, exactly the opposite of what the President needs to do as he tries to rally his base for the midterms. Good news for conservatives.

What other reason could be for this? Pure speculation, but could it be in relation to an October surprise that involves an attack on Iran? General Jones perhaps disagreed with it.

Aside from the geopolitical implications for America, Jones is not known to be a friend of Israel.


It is possible he doesn't want to see them helped, or he'd rather see them blamed than America for a strike at Iran's nuclear program.

Whatever the case, the timing is just plain odd.

Friday Musical Interlude - Night Moves

Bob Seger's Night Moves.  If you are 35 and this doesn't bring back some sort of memory, or stir some sort of emotion, you might be dead already.

October 7, 2010

Food Stamps For Everyone!

Food Stamps.  Tasty.
You know what these things in the picture are?  They're food stamps. You know how many people in the United States are currently using food stamps?  41.8 million people.  That's more than the entire population of Argentina.  At last check, Argentina was NOT a super-power.  Argentina has a GDP per capita of $14,525 according to the IMF (2009).  The United States by comparison has a GDP per capita of  $45,934.  Three times that of Argentina.

According to Bloomberg,
The number of Americans receiving food stamps rose to a record 41.8 million in July as the jobless rate hovered near a 27-year high, the government said.

Recipients of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program subsidies for food purchases jumped 18 percent from a year earlier and increased 1.4 percent from June, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said today in a statement on its website. Participation has set records for 20 straight months.
Yet the United States, the one that's the superpower, has more people on food stamps than the entire country of Argentina.  For a family of 3 (roughly the average family size in the U.S.), in order to qualify for food stamps, the family's Gross Income must be under $23,808 to qualify for food stamps.  That's not that far from Argentina's GDP per capita.

In Argentina roughly 20% of the population is below the poverty line. In the United States, the number varies but is typically in the teens. Based on the recent numbers, 13.6% of the United States is currently on food stamps. So things aren't all that rosy.  Curiously, 20 straight months of growing food stamp use happens to coincide with the number of months President Obama has been in power.  Hmmmmm.  Maybe the President should kick off some sort of War on Poverty.  It could be a green movement too!  I don't like the direction of that line of thinking.  But I bet a lot of Democrats do.

No Matter How Hard It Tries, Government Won't Create Jobs

Ostensibly related, scary jobs graph.
No matter how hard it tries, government won't create jobs.  This is really quite simple.  

(1) In order for wealth to be created, value has to be added to something. Trees become wood, they become more economically valuable.  Bulk wood becomes pencils it becomes more economically valuable (thank you Milton Friedman).  Wealth has been added to the system.  In this example it is goods being created, but it could also be a service.

(2) In order to create a good or service some combination of three things is required.  Those three things are land, labor and capital ($).

(3) Government is typically not in the business of making goods, but it does, ostensibly provide services.  

(4) Normally these goods or services are created by people or businesses in response to a perceived need.   Jobs are a necessary by-product of wealth creation.  In order to create wealth, people need to do work. It is one of the 3 key ingredients of production.

(5) In the case of government, it has land, and labor, but it gets it's capital by taking it from businesses and people in the form of taxes. It requires that capital to employ it's labor and maintain it's land (and buildings) in addition to providing whatever services it can.  There is a significant use of capital required for this.

(6) By taking this money out of the hands of business and people it is reducing their ability to have the three resources needed to create wealth - specifically capital.  Essentially what government has done is move one of the factors of production from one player (the private sector) to another (itself).

(7) Assuming everyone can create wealth equally (and that's a flattering assumption for the government) by employing land, labor and capital, the government has not added any jobs that would not have been created elsewhere.  In fact, judging by the failure of the Keynesian ARRA stimulus pushed through by the Democrats, they likely provided less jobs than if they'd left that money with business to do it's thing.  All government can do is shift what those dollars help create.  Instead of iPods*, you might get more workers at the DMV.  Government has never been better than the free market at assessing what the public wants.  If it were, the government would be producing iPods. Since it is not, the government is producing less wealth, and less jobs than would have been created if they'd left that money where it originally was.

The government cannot create jobs, it simply can move around the existing job mix to suit itself.  I don't think I've ever heard any Keynesian economist argue that the government money goes further than private sector money (has a higher multiplier effect).  That erstwhile taxed capital, could have been put to more effective use by the private sector.  It would have created more jobs than ARRA did. That's a separate discussion that requires more time.

Keynesian adherents would argue that business has been sitting on the sidelines and that money would not have been spent anyway.  They might also argue that the money wasn't taxed, it was mostly borrowed, from China. That's an interesting argument but it is flawed.

Let's address China first.  Setting aside whether it's a good idea to borrow enormous sums of money from a global competitor, the money the government uses from China it WILL have to be paid back eventually.  With interest.  So it will still come out of the private sector in the form of a tax, except it will happen in the future, and it will be more than advertised. Oops.

Regarding private money sitting on the sidelines, there are a number of problems with that argument.  A lot of the money that the private sector is sitting on, it is doing so out of uncertainty.  That uncertainty has been brought on by a stalled recovery, which has been caused by the Keynesian tax and spend approach to government and the private sector is simply waiting for the dust to settle before it starts spending again.  Now instead of $3 trillion that the private sector is sitting on and waiting to spend, it's only $2 trillion.  The other trillion, plus interest, will be forfeited to China.  The money is gone - in exchange for what?  A 9.6% jobless rate (probably 9.7% by tomorrow) instead of the promised 8% cap.  Congratulations guys, you blew it.

Another problem with the money on the sidelines issue is that it will not stay there forever.  The Great Recession will not last forever either.  But without the unintended consequences of government intervention, perhaps that private investment would have already started to flow back into the economy.  Just like the Obama White House's fictitious jobs saved, one could argue that the number of jobs destroyed has been in the millions.

Keynesianism, is a flawed view of economics.  At least as it's being practiced today.  I would argue (and others have said that Keynes himself would to some extent agree with this) that the only time a government stimulus is a good idea is if the government has been prudent and was not sitting on a mountain of debt but rather a healthy surplus.  Keynes I believe might argue the surplus point, but I believe he would agree that systemic deficits are counter-productive and not how he meant the government stimulus in a recessionary period idea to be applied.

It's something to consider when you start thinking about who you are voting for in any election.  President Obama wasn't lying when he said as a candidate that he thought spreading the wealth was a good thing.  He's talking about it through a prism of how government will spend your money, and whom it would like to see benefit.  The one part he did forget to mention was that while the government can't create wealth, and while it's busy spreading it around, they're also hard at work spreading around the debt.  There's a lot more of that going around these days than wealth.

*Steve Jobs, unlike government, has created iPods, jobs (and more Jobs).
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