September 30, 2012

Sunday reading links

Here are a few good links for your Sunday reading pleasure.

King Shamus tells you where the buck stops.

Big Government tells you to follow Canada's example.

Race for Justice invokes Bill Whittle's common sense explanation.

It Don't Make Sense points out more stupid.

Proof Positive links the replacement NFL referees with the Romney Obama debate.

Diogenes' Middle Finger gets aimed at CNN..

A Conservative Teacher analyzes Obama's education policies.

VandenBrink points out the fix.

Teresamerica supports Tom Smith for Senate.

A Cop's Watch has a story about ... smuggled cheese???

Worried about the recent polls? Fredd says Relax.

Just a Conservative Girl discusses reverse racism and Jay Z.

The War Planner discusses the Obamaphone.

Sharing the best of it

I was catching up on my reading and viewing yesterday and I got to the Pajamas Media PJTV offerings and I saw a number of pieces that made me think to myself "I've got to re-post that!"  I couldn't possibly re-post them all or else I'd look like a local affiliate of Pajamas TV.  The Canadian affiliate I supposed.

Bill Whittle was recently here in Toronto and unfortunately for me, I missed it. I wasn't able to attend, though I'd hoped to do so  After his trip, Bill had some complimentary things to say about Toronto and about Canada and our relationship with the U.S. and some not so complimentary things about our institutionalized multiculturalism. He could not have been more correct. To see his thoughts, on the subject, check this out. I hope he comes back again, I will be sure not to miss him next time.

And again from Bill Whittle, there's a monologue - a eulogy almost - about America's future past and why space exploration is was one of the somethings that made America great.  He leaves it to his audience to infer for themselves that the money for space exploration, which is a drop int he fiscal bucket (now even less than a drop), was better spent than so many Utopian progressive spending efforts that have supplanted the right type of government investments.  He does briefly give credit to private individuals who are attempting to fill the void. But the real learning he provides comes at 5:09.

But that still wasn't the video I decided I'd share.  Instead I wanted to share this discussion that focuses on the recent hot topic of media/polling bias in the presidential race.  Here's the take of Scott Ott, Bill Whittle and Stephen Green on Trifecta.

September 29, 2012

What they said.

Saturday Learning Series - Welfare Economics

Continuing with the Mises Austrian School of Economics 101, Hans-Hermann Hoppe and Jörg Guido Hülsmann discuss the economics of deflation in the 10th of an 11 part lecture series.

This part deals with the foundations of welfare economics.

September 27, 2012

If this doesn't sink Obama, it'll sink the country

The economy's precarious position was underscored Thursday by a pair of government reports. Orders for durable goods—long-lasting manufactured products such as cars and televisions—tumbled 13% in August from July, the biggest monthly drop in more than three years. Much of the decrease came in orders for commercial aircraft, which often show big monthly fluctuations, but the report nonetheless provided new evidence that the once-robust factory sector is losing steam.

The manufacturing slowdown would be less worrisome if other segments of the economy were firing on all cylinders. But another report Thursday provided a separate reminder of how weak the recovery has been.

Gross domestic product, the broadest measure of all goods and services produced, grew at a 1.3% seasonally adjusted annual pace in the second quarter, the Commerce Department said, down from its previous estimate of 1.7% and slower than the first quarter's 2% pace. The revision reflected softer consumer spending and exports along with depleted farm stockpiles due to the Midwest drought.
Watch the mainstream media jump all over this...

any second now...

If Obama gets re-elected the country deserves its fate.  Conservatives too, for allowing it to come to this.

Tough love.

Hey left, you screwed up.

You had the media. We on the right are onto that. You had the web, we're onto that too. You had the courts. We're working on that one. With all of those advances by conservatives to combat your underhanded tactics at tricking the public into voting for your progressive liberal candidates, it's only natural you'd be looking for new ways to own the voters.

Sure, some tried and true methods like public schools and unions still represent strongholds for you but they aren't enough. Your agenda requires a complete web of misinformation. You need more tactics to employ. This is especially true in the time of Obama where the screw-ups come at us in a fast and furious way. You need to run cover for the president and more importantly for the agenda.

So it's only natural I suppose that we'd see you try to juice the polls to mount a voter suppression effort. It's ironic that liberals scream about the voter suppression of voter ID laws proposed by conservatives but are more than willing to use dubious polls to disenfranchise voters.

As an aside, it's also ironic that as the party of big government you deem requiring people to present some official form of documentation to be allowed to vote as bad. You'd think you'd be all for another government issued ID for voters and perhaps another agency to manage the whole system.

But with the speed of the news cycle in the era of the Internet, we're onto you on the poll trickery much more quickly than we were with the other things you've done. While it might have some limited success short term, it won't last. Every time you try a new tactic, we will counter it. Alinsky's playbook is a set of guidelines you can no longer rely on. Everything it advocates can be countered.

You pushed us too far and we are no longer going to stand idly by and let it continue. That's ultimately where you really screwed up. Whether it takes a generation or two or three to fix, we're on it now.

Facebook Metdown, part 21

Via TechCrunch,
Some Facebook users were alarmed this morning when it appeared that private messages written in 2009 and earlier were showing up on viewable Timelines as messages “Posted by friends.”

The earliest version of this post included accounts of users who claimed to have had their private messages turned into Timeline posts. TechCrunch has investigated more, and we have found no evidence that the allegedly exposed posts were actually private messages. Our Facebook specialist Josh Constine found that email receipts show allegedly exposed messages were in fact Wall posts, and the posts do not appear in users’ Facebook Messages inbox.

Facebook also says in no uncertain terms that there is absolutely no privacy bug.
Just because they say it isn't an issue doesn't mean it isn't. People I know personally have been experiencing this issue (though I haven't personally).  When someone has a vested interest in making you believe something or seeing something a certain way, they will try to do so*.

*See pollsters.

September 26, 2012

The science of unskewed polls

Pollsters are ubiquitous these days.  Sure, they're always polling all the time, but right now their presidential polling is high profile media stuff.  That's true because (1) there happens to be a presidential election coming up, and (2) the polls seem to indicate that Obama is winning, and you know the mainstream media is loving that.  Of course they'd want to highlight that.    Conservatives have been right to question the veracity of the polling that in many cases is sampling voters using a partisan split that unfairly penalizes both Republicans and Independents in favor of a larger Democratic voter sample within the poll.  Intentionally or unintentionally there is a bias built into many of these polls.

Photo via

September 25, 2012

Is Gallup biased? It's Chairman isn't.

I stumbled upon a a book that I haven't read yet, entitled "The Coming Jobs War".  If the description of the book at Amazon does the book justice, not only does Jim Clifton, Chairman and CEO of Gallup seem to not exhibit a bias in his beliefs, he actually gets it about America.

September 24, 2012

Charlie Hebdo has angered Muslims

Charlie Hebdo is not a person.  Charlie Hebdo is a satirical magazine in France and it has angered Muslims with an editorial cartoon.  The magazine follows the French tradition of skewering religion.  Free speech in France, is under a microscope as a result.

Conservative Christians might find themselves in an awkward position of having to defend those who would attack religion, or else those who would attack religious disrespect.  French Christians no doubt have felt Charlie Hebdo's sting in the past.
Many French newspapers have rushed to the defence of Charlie Hebdo after the weekly satirical paper published cartoons showing the Prophet Muhammad.

Others, however, accuse the paper of acting irresponsibly in the current context and run front-page headlines warning of the consequences.

A front-page editorial in the centre-left daily Le Monde says the "fundamental" principle of freedom of expression outweighs any other concerns, including religious ones.

The fact that religions may be subjected not just to criticism but also to ridicule has been "clear since Voltaire", it says.

"Whatever people may think of Charlie Hebdo's editorial choices... the only conceivable limit to its freedom is that which the courts might judge to be justified," the paper concludes...

Other papers emphasise the need to act responsibly.

A front-page editorial by Yves Threard published by the centre-right daily Le Figaro says publishing such cartoons is "as easy as it is irresponsible". Resorting to "silly provocations" to respond to Islamists' attempts at intimidation means "falling into their trap", the paper judges.

A commentary by the writer Jean-François Bouthors in the best-selling regional daily Ouest France warns that "claiming to defend the freedom of expression by in turn engaging in a game of contempt, sarcasm and stigmatisation is very wrong".

September 23, 2012

The Senate needs more Tea Party focus

Help us help...Libya?
The Senate has just overwhelming voted to continuing sending aid to Libya, Egypt and Pakistan. It speaks volumes about what the conservative/Tea Party agenda should be for the next decade.

September 22, 2012

Congressman Sez What?

Rep. Cleaver
Congressman Emmanuel Cleaver, a member of the (liberal) Congressional Black Caucus, apparently feels African Americans should vote, or give back their color. No, really.
Congressman Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.), the chairmen of the Congressional Black Caucus, issued a powerful challenge to black voters on Thursday, saying that eligible African Americans who choose not to vote “ought to give us their color back.” The comments came during Cleaver’s address at a CBC forum on voting rights, criticizing an apparent lack of respect from black voters who opt not to exercise their right...

Cleaver cited the history of Jim Crow laws in the South that worked to prevent blacks from voting, with policies ranging from grandfather clauses to literacy tests. “It says: Before you can vote, you must recite the Constitution,” Cleaver said. “And of course nobody’s going to be able to recite the Constitution, so they can’t—they’re then rendered to be too illiterate to vote.”

Cleaver’s address coincides with the implementation of new voter ID laws that have been referred to as a modern method of voter restriction by civil rights groups. The new laws have been adopted by several states including Pennsylvania and Georgia, and require citizens to have specific forms of photo identification in order to cast their vote.

Civil rights activists contend that poor lower class voters, specifically minorities, will be alienated by the law.
The irony is that it was southern Democrats who tried to leverage Jim Crow laws to keep voter suppression intact;
Through the 1930s, legislative dominance by Southern Democrats was buoyed by strong party allegiance in the south and a weak Northern Democratic party. Legislators were more concerned with passing relief bills for an economically depressed constituency than with helping blacks regain suffrage in the South. Black leaders referred to the New Deal as the "Raw Deal," as blacks' concerns were largely ignored. Roosevelt needed the votes of Southern Democrats to pass relief legislation, and he feared losing Congressional support by introducing any provisions for civil rights.
But this misdirection should come as no surprise. Democrats continually project their own guilt onto their political rivals. Suppress votes, stuff ballot boxes and then blame Republicans for not playing fair. The only sad part of it is that they continue to get away with it and the Congressional Black Caucus continue to come across to their constituency as heroes when in fact, Democrats have a history of voter suppression.
Democrats wrote the book. When it comes to voter suppression, the Democrats have a history of doing it, starting after the civil war till 1965. Using what has come to be known as the Jim Crow laws; Democrats would do anything to prevent blacks and poor whites from voting.

They passed laws to make voter registration more restrictive, created the poll tax, and other methods to suppress voting like literacy and comprehension tests (See”). They also were responsible for creating segregation of blacks.

To pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act of 1965, it took the Republicans to help pass it, even though the Democrats had a majority in congress.

Voter picture ID will not suppress voting. If you are registered to vote, your address is already on file and you need a picture ID to drive, cash a check, register for college, and conduct other official business.
Getting back to the original notion, what exactly can we infer from the comment "give back their color"?  It's not clear except that had a Republican said it, it would be front page news by now.

It's okay, the president went on Letterman

The Middle East is a disaster, and then there's this bit of statistical reality:

Click to enlarge/view.

Never fear America, your president appeared on David Letterman's show.  All is well.  Nothing to see here. These are not the droids statistics you are looking for.

Saturday Learning Series - Austrian School Theory and History

Continuing with the Mises Austrian School of Economics 101, Hans-Hermann Hoppe and Jörg Guido Hülsmann discuss the economics of deflation in the 9th of an 11 part lecture series.

If you jump in at the middle it might be boring and/or confusing, but the lack of explosions is offset by the common sense.

A generational cause - school vouchers

Let's start with the disconnect. Though many liberal progressives would have you believe otherwise, the American education system is in decline.
Though spending per pupil has more than doubled since 1970 after allowing for inflation, students continue to rank low in international comparisons; dropout rates are high; scores on SATs and the like have fallen and remain flat. Simple literacy, let alone functional literacy, in the United States is almost surely lower at the beginning of the 21st century than it was a century earlier. And all this is despite a major increase in real spending per student since "A Nation at Risk" was published.
Yet America despite this issue, America has generally prospered over the same period of time. Science has continued to drive innovation but education is failing our society. How is that possible?  There is the disconnect that allows liberals to claim that public education must clearly be doing something right.  But the education system is the problem. The (temporary) solution has come from somewhere else, as Dr. Michio Kaku explains:

The fix Dr.Kaku describes, has clearly started to outlive it's maximum efficiency. Those who learn no longer stay in America - they return home.  America is diffusing it's technological advantages because they've tried to replace domestic educational greatness with the 'magnet effect'.  It worked, but it will not continue to work. Another solution must be constructed. So if the problem is that education system in America is not enough to create a sufficient American pipeline of genius and thus innovation, what then is the solution? The answer isn't anything new. Milton Friedman had the answer decades ago (for a terrific, more detailed explanation, see here).

The principal argument comes between 0:33 and 1:08.  It's simple.  The alternative to his solution is perhaps not a catastrophic decline but a slow painful death of American prosperity that is already underway.  The migration of higher education will continue towards a greater and greater percentage of higher education going to foreign nationals, aided by their growing prosperity.  As that happens the American ability to compete will decline as these learnings are brought  back to other nations and used to improve everything from education, to manufacturing to innovation.  America is effectively exporting its competitive advantage.  What that means over time, is an economic decline, followed by a financial decline and a military decline and any other type of decline that you can imagine.  

I've argued in the past that politically, conservatives have to make whatever inroads they can, be they  small or large.  Some RINOs may be a necessary evil for example.  The reason that I believe this is that when it comes to America's accelerating slip into the abyss, it is being aided and abetted by an unwitting populace, placated by the never-fulfilled promise of an easy path to "hope".  As a result, anything that can be done to halt the decline of America, must be done - even if it means slowing the decline in some ways rather than being a purist and sticking to an all or nothing mentality.  With all or nothing, you can end up with nothing.  The world cannot afford a void in place of America.  With conservative impurities, you can build towards fixing the problem in a better way later, you are just buying yourself more time to make the right fixes.

A solution to America's problem, one as simply and eloquently stated by Milton Friedman decades ago, does not happen overnight even if you need it to be overnight.  A redefining of H1Bs may be a temporary fix., but the real fix is fixing what happens here in America.  School vouchers would do that.  That is a major paradigm shift that requires a growing understanding among the electorate which in turn requires a more balanced media, outreach programs to explain the idea to the disenfranchised and not least of all, an opportunity to move in that direction, which requires more Republicans in power.

September 21, 2012

If it doesn't make sense, it must be Pelosi

Nancy Pelosi, still at odds with reality.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi says she does not want lawmakers to extend the payroll tax cut that expires at the end of this year. She says the measure was always meant to be temporary and says that instead, it is time for Congress to focus on overhauling the entire tax code.
Who believes Nancy Pelosi has the slightest interest in overhauling the entire tax code? Unless by overhauling she means adding 2700 pages that they'll have to pass for everyone to see what's in it.  She just wants the tax increase, and the overhaul can come a few decades down the road.

September 20, 2012

If it makes sense, it makes sense.

I stumbled onto a new blog that I'll be adding to my blogroll today.  It's titled Freedom quest of Zork (the) Hun.  And I thought my blog title was too long.  Despite the title, Zork (if I can call the author that) is a self described social libertarian.  While I don't agree with everything that I've read so far on his blog, there's a lot there that makes sense.

Reading it and agreeing with it does not make me think that I am becoming more libertarian in my beliefs.  It reminds me that modern conservatism (properly applied) or classical liberalism has much in common with libertarianism.  If it were viewed as a Venn Diagram, there would be significant overlap (intersection) but not a complete union.  But it doesn't matter if a viewpoint is forwarded by a conservative or a libertarian - if it makes sense, it makes sense.  Common sense transcends labels anyway.  

Zork makes a lot of sense, and it's worth checking out his blog.  He's a fellow Canadian (Hungarian by birth, but clearly Canadian) and not a fan of socialized medicine (for example).  He tackles issues in a logical way, something I used to do more often when I had more time to devote to longer essay type posts to this blog.

If you get a chance, head over and check out his blog - it's worth the read.

September 19, 2012

Canada Ranks (Well) Ahead of U.S. in Economic Freedom

Canada - right direction, America - wrong direction.  Via Canada's National Post, here's the key paragraph;
“The key driver of our success versus the U.S.’s success is really size of government,” said Fred McMahon, the Fraser Institute’s vice-president of international policy research. “That’s where Canada, since 1995 has gone up significantly [in ranking] and where the United States has gone down even more significantly.”
That says it all.  Obama is not listening, but are Americans?  We'll know (almost) soon enough. 

September 18, 2012

It's come to this.

I wonder how much this guy got in donations.  Photo from here.

The entitlement irony will make your head spin unless you think of it as an act of charity -- for the nation.

Obama: I wouldn't have supported welfare reform

All you need to know.

This is in addition to the Drudge-highlighted comments he made on believing wealth re-distribution in 1998.

Romney's 47% is not a bad thing

Liberal website Mother Jones thinks it has a smoking gun expose on Mitt Romney's comments on 47% of the electorate.  My initial reaction on seeing the video was "so what?"  After thinking about it, I think this video actually helps Mitt Romney.

There's nothing really that terrible in there.  That sort of blunt talk should shore up conservatives still not sure about Romney, and it should reinforce his assertions that the country cannot afford it's current path.  If he plays it right and doesn't have a knee jerk defensive reaction, this could work in Romney's favor.

I'll post more on this later when I get a chance.

September 17, 2012

Can Romney Win?

The man with the plan.
Of course Mitt Romney can win the presidency. There's a lot of polling trying to convince voters that Obama has the election wrapped up but those are potentially misleading.  There were two articles on Hot Air today about Romney possibly changing direction because, as the press wants voters to think, they need a course correction to avoid an utter humiliating defeat. The first post by Ed Morrissey points out that the comical media narrative has lost it's focus.  The second by Allahpundit notices that maybe there are some truths in one stream of the narrative.  But while there is a media-contrived narrative in play, there are some dots that can still be connected.  So let's connect them.

September 16, 2012


The crisis still smoldering in the Middle East, the focus should be on ensuring the safety of American diplomatic personnel as well as civilians who may be in harm's way.  Nevertheless with the stonewalling coming from the White House, attention must turn to Libyagate - what did the president know, and when did he know that there was danger for Americans?

September 15, 2012

The White House Doesn't Understand This

White House spokesman Jay Carney this week felt it important to differentiate between America and this movie that riled up the Muslim world.  Unfortunately, there's something the White House is clearly not understanding.

Via Mediaite;
This is a fairly volatile situation, and it is in response not to U.S. policy, not to, obviously, the administration, not to the American people. It is in response to a video – a film – that we have judged to be reprehensive and disgusting. That in no way justifies any violent reaction to it. But this is not a case of protests directed at the United States, writ large, or at U.S. policy. This is in response to a video that is offensive and – to Muslims.
The apparent missing knowledge: the Muslims offended by the movie do not make the same distinction Carney mentions. It's not like they are burning rolls of celluloid - it's American flags they are burning.

Saturday Learning Series - Deflation

Continuing with the Mises Austrian School of Economics 101, Hans-Hermann Hoppe and Jörg Guido Hülsmann discuss the economics of deflation  in the 8th of an 11 part lecture series.

Public union bankrupting of America in under 9 minutes

Government Unions and the Bankrupting of America.

Israeli-Palestinian history in under 12 minutes

Encounter Books has a number of videos worth watching.  Unfortunately they've disabled embedding here, or else I'd share it with you directly. Debunking the Palestinian lie is a must see history of the longstanding Israeli-Palestinian situation.  In 11 and 1/2  minutes you can why Israel deserves American (and others') support.  Please check out the link and watch the entire video.  It will be eye opening.  It focuses strictly on the history and the facts, many of which most people aren't aware.

September 14, 2012

Blame the right, no matter what.

ZoNation gets it right yet again. Libya - blame the right, because that's logical.

September 13, 2012

America 'was warned of embassy attack but did nothing'

Did nothing?????

Does that even need a story with it?  Should that not end the election right there?
Egypt's General Intelligence Service warned that a jihadi group is planning to launch terrorist attacks against the US and Israeli embassies in Cairo, according to a report Tuesday by Egypt Independent, citing a secret letter obtained by Al-Masry Al-Youm.

According to the report, the attack is being planned by Global Jihad, the group suspected of killing 16 Egyptian border guards in Sinai on August 5.

Al-Masry Al-Youm reportedly obtained a copy of the September 4 letter, sent to all Egyptian security sectors, warning that Sinai- and Gaza-based Global Jihad cells were planning attacks on the two embassies.

What once was a strength is now a weakness

The president's foreign policy record, abysmal as it has been, has for over a year, been papered over by the killing of Osama Bin Laden. It has provided him cover for a series of fatal foreign policy flaws that have led to yesterday's embassy stormings and killings.

The simple truth is that killing Bin Laden is not foreign policy nor should it confer foreign policy credentials to the president. And let's not forget that Hillary Clinton should not emerge unscathed by this. This is enough of a clusterfrak that there is plenty of blame to go around here.

It has been an abysmal failure of foreign policy and it's time it gets turned on the president with the searing intensity the truth demands.

September 12, 2012

Apologizer in Chief

In case you hadn't heard, the Middle East seems to be collapsing into an Islamist utopia where Americans serve as pinatas and violence is the norm.  Tunisia, Egypt and Libya all are disturbingly ill at ease.
As Americans gathered Tuesday to mark the eleventh anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, angry Muslims stormed the U.S. embassy in Benghazi, Libya, killing four Americans, including the U.S. ambassador. Similar attacks had occurred hours earlier at the U.S. embassy in Egypt and now there are reports that Muslims in Algeria and Tunisia are being called on to carry out similar attacks.
To say the president has reacted poorly, and politically to the entire situation is an understatement. The apologizer in chief, has stayed true to form and Iranian hostage crisis 2.0 is warming up.
Is it possible to learn from history? Apparently not if you are an American president determined to win the love of the Islamic world. Over 33 years ago, Islamist rioters stormed an American embassy. U.S. sovereignty was violated and hostages were taken. The immediate response from America, though, was conciliatory–as if those who had insulted the United States could be convinced to think better of their target if those who had just been attacked made enough apologies. The result was the Iran hostage crisis that helped bring down the administration of Jimmy Carter. You might think American diplomats would have learned the lessons of Carter’s Iran debacle but judging by the statement issued today by the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, Egypt, perhaps that chapter of history is no longer considered required reading in the age of Obama.
Whether Obama can distance himself from an embassy's apology is not as important as the fact that he has set the tone with his behavior with allies and enemies alike and even dating back to his apology tour of the Middle East.  Lost in all of this appears to be Obama's snub of Netanyahu recently vis-a-vis Iran.

The Finish

So the race for the White House is still tight. Either Mitt Romney is being mistreated by systemically, deliberately faulty polling - the oversampling of Democrats relative to Republicans and Independents, adults instead of likely voters - or the race is indeed close.

Either way the contender will have to get the White House the old fashioned way - he'll have to earn it, to paraphrase John Houseman.

The more I think about that the more I like it. After all, the economy being as bad as it is presents a reason not to vote for the current guy, but it doesn't make the case for the other guy. That's how we ended up with BHO.

Romney needs to earn his presidency. He needs to fight for it. He can't coast into it on Obama's badness or else we will get yet another ersatz president. Romney needs to do more than he has done to date. He's presented the case that he has business experience. He used the convention to humanize himself.

That leaves two tasks for him to complete. He has to present his plan for recovery. It needs to be comprehensive but simple enough to make a sound bite. It needs to be convincing and realistic. It has to appeal to voters and it has to have measurable goals.

The other thing he needs to do - beat Obama in the debates. Convincingly.

If he does those things well, he'll have earned the confidence of the American electorate and the presidency.

An Idea for Chevy Volts

Sales are bad. The cost is too high and the benefit and usefulness too underwhelming. The Pentagon is shoring up sales by buying them.

I've got a solution - presidential golf carts. Go green to the green. The president can then claim every golf trip as a way of building up the post fossil fuel economy. See - he's really working.

And he golfs enough, and they are troubled enough, he might actually double demand for the things. He's creating jobs. No matter that they are con jobs...

September 11, 2012

Never Forget

Last word politics and the conventions

The editors at National Review make a sound case today as to why conservatives should not fear the bounce for Obama coming out of the Democratic convention (a bounce that in fact looks soft already).  But in making a good case, I think they may have made a mistake in their pronouncement on tactics.
The Democrats, it seems to us, made better use of their convention than the Republicans made of theirs. The Republican message, especially in the most-watched addresses, seemed less coordinated, deliberate, and focused. Republicans spent too much time explaining what a nice guy Romney is and how happy he is about female empowerment, and not enough time explaining how he would improve the national condition.

Both party coalitions are strong. In the absence of shocks, presidential races will be tight.
(emphasis added)

Here's where I think they got it wrong. 

September 10, 2012

More bad news

The last couple of posts have had a pretty negative slant. A so-called Republican supporting Obama, and I missed Bill Whittle.  Let me just pile on that negativity for a moment. The latest polling indicates that president Obama received a post convention bounce while Mitt Romney got none, or the intra-convention bounce wore off because of the timing of the Obama coronation purposefully hit the tail end of the Republican convention and didn't allow the Republican's bounce to take hold.  On top of that, in August, the president had overtaken Romney in fundraising for the first time in months and Democrat Super-PACs seem to be ramping up as well.

Bleh. More bad news.

Nevertheless, I remain upbeat.  The polls may shift and the Obama bounce, puffed up by the media may very well turn out to be as transient as Romney's.  After all, Carter led Reagan by 4 points in September 1980.  Mitt Romney's ad blitz has finally started.  They'll need more messaging to add to the blitz, but the dollar amounts they've raised can help turn the temporary tide.  And really, the three debates are really going to be the deciding factor and frankly I like our chances.  Biden will be torn apart by Ryan. And in the Romney-Obama debates there will be no teleprompter for the president to use.  Short of cheating, he'll come up short against Romney.  He has too much to answer for, to account for, to effectively mount a sustainable and strong defense.

So many things wrong with this I don't know where to start

Politico has a story today about the Republican pizza store owner who was visited by Obama and is now facing a boycott of his pizza restaurant.  There are so many things wrong with this story, I don't know where to begin in my critique, so let me just jump right in:
The owner of a Florida pizza shop says people are boycotting his business because he bear-hugged President Barack Obama on Sunday.

“People are saying a lot of bad things and boycotting my restaurant,” Scott Van Duzer, 46, told POLITICO. “There’s no middle line anymore, and that’s exactly what’s wrong with our country right now.”

I am SERIOUSLY bummed!

Bill Whittle is in Toronto tonight, and I can't go. I have a personal commitment that I will be dealing with instead. While I am fully committed to that personal commitment, I am seriously bummed not to be seeing Bill Whittle tonight (at 8 pm at St. Michael's College (University of Toronto)).

For those of you who don't know who Bill Whittle is, check out this video interview from the Toronto Sun.

September 9, 2012


WordsMatter2012 put out this video about Obama last week.

Canada Continues To Stand Tall

Ronn Torossian writes on Right Wing News,
Today, Canada announced that it is closing its embassy in Iran and would be expelling Iranian diplomats from Canada. As Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird said “Canada has closed its embassy in Iran, effective immediately, and declared personae non gratae all remaining Iranian diplomats in Canada. Canada’s position on the regime in Iran is well known. Canada views the Government of Iran as the most significant threat to global peace and security in the world today,” said Baird.

“The Iranian regime is providing increasing military assistance to the Assad regime; it refuses to comply with UN resolutions pertaining to its nuclear program; it routinely threatens the existence of Israel and engages in racist anti-Semitic rhetoric and incitement to genocide; it is among the world’s worst violators of human rights; and it shelters and materially supports terrorist groups, requiring the Government of Canada to formally list Iran as a state sponsor of terrorism under the Justice for Victims of Terrorism Act. Moreover, the Iranian regime has shown blatant disregard for the Vienna Convention and its guarantee of protection for diplomatic personnel. Under the circumstances, Canada can no longer maintain a diplomatic presence in Iran. Our diplomats serve Canada as civilians, and their safety is our number one priority. Diplomatic relations between Canada and Iran have been suspended. All Canadian diplomatic staff have left Iran, and Iranian diplomats in Ottawa have been instructed to leave within five days.”
Memo to BHO - take a hint.

Canada has been standing up to Iran since the conservatives were a minority government.  They were the first to walk out on Ahmedinejad's racist rant at the U.N. a few years back.

Canada is no military powerhouse, but they do stand up for right, now that they have a conservative government.

September 8, 2012

Romney Ad Blitz - Spanish Edition

I'm glad to see that Romney is not ceding the Hispanic vote to Obama.

As part of his ad blitz, this ad is clearly destined for certain states - Florida and Nevada come to mind. I'm not sure which states this will run in, if you have any insight, let me know.
TAMPA, Florida — In its first sustained and organized attempt to woo Hispanic outreach this election cycle, the Romney campaign is preparing a major post-convention blitz aimed at wooing Latinos in Florida, an aide told BuzzFeed.

The effort will include a dramatic increase in Spanish-language ad spending, an aggressive bilingual mail program geared toward early voter turnout, and an ambitious ground game led by 13 full-time field staffers dedicated solely to courting Hispanics — more, the aide claimed, than "any other Republican presidential campaign in history."

The stakes are high: Swings of a few percentage points among Hispanic voters in Florida, as in other crucial states, could easily swing the election.

Though the campaign declined to provide specific numbers, an aide said they plan to spend "substantial money" on Spanish-language ads, many of them featuring the candidate's son, Craig Romney, who speaks fluent Spanish. They will also run negative commercials attacking President Obama for breaking his promise to take on immigration reform during his first year in office — a counter to Latino communities' distrust with the Republican Party over some leaders anti-immigrant rhetoric in general and over Romney's hard primary opposition to the "Dream Act" and other measures to legalize illegal immigrants.

Romney surrogates and aides will hold a series of "Hispanic dialogues" throughout the state, where Latino voters will be encouraged to come discuss the issues they find most important.
It's not just about money though, it's about connecting.  I would have liked to have seen Romney and the RNC start this effort two years ago.

Romney Ad Blitz - North Carolina Edition

North Carolina won't make the mistake of supporting Obama again.

Romney Ad Blitz - Colorado Edition

Military cutbacks under Obama hurt Colorado.

Romney Ad Blitz - Florida Edition

Obama has not been good for Florida.  Mitt Romney wants Floridians to know that.  Most must already know, but just in case you live in Florida and didn't realize that point, here's the ad from Romney's post Democratic convention ad blitz.

Romney Ad Blitz - Virginia Edition

Virginia I believe, will go Republican this cycle, and it won't be as close as the polls indicate.  Following the end of the DNC convention, Romney won't allow the Obama bounce - if there is one - to take hold in swing states like Virginia.  It's a good, targeted strategy. Here's the Virginia ad opener.

Romney Ad Blitz - Ohio Edition

Now that Clinton and Obama have finished speaking, watch for the Romney fundraising advantage to start having an impact.  As long as the campaign doesn't overspend or blow it's budget too quickly, they have a funding advantage they have to leverage from now to the finish.  They can do like Obama did in 2008, speak their message far more often than the other side.  It's a way of getting in the last word, which is very important in politics.  Here's Romney's opening for Ohio.

Saturday Learning Series - Business Cycle Theory

Continuing with the Mises Austrian School of Economics 101, Hans-Hermann Hoppe and Jörg Guido Hülsmann discuss business cycle theory in the 7th of an 11 part lecture series.

September 6, 2012

Some great reading from around that webophere thing

Some great recent reading in the links below.

No, you didn't save the auto industry Mr. President.  From the Cato Institute

Full Metal Patriot has a logical take on the Democrats' We Belong All to the Government insanity.

Elizabeth Warren truth exposed at Legal Insurrection

Line of the week is at Capitalist Preservation.

The first in a long line of fact checking the Clinton speech: Job creation?  From The Foundry

What??? King Shamus has gone bi-partisan for the Democrats.

Clinton apologizes for his speech. I guess it wasn't Castroesque enough. Via Diogenes Middle Finger

I've been 'wondering' why there haven't been a ton of state polls since the RNC convention. Virginia Right 'wonders' a little bit further and more specifically.

What to look for in Obama's acceptance speech

What should you expect to see in Obama's acceptance speech tonight?  That is, as opposed to at Obama's acceptance speech tonight, where you will see a large number of drones with no clue about reality.  According to top aides, you'll see him tackle entitlement reforms.  I'm assuming that means with the same tremendous aplomb he tackled the deficit with in his first term.
Top campaign aides to President Obama said that in his speech on Thursday night, the president will discuss deficit reduction and entitlement reform.

Stephanie Cutter, appearing on CNN’s Starting Point on Thursday, said, “I think you will hear the president lay out his plan of balanced deficit reduction where everybody pays their fair share and we cut what we don't need and that includes entitlement reform.”

Earlier, she said: “I think you will hear him talk about the types of decisions we need to make as a country if we want to get our debt under control and do it in a way that will unleash growth and help the middle class grow.”
Ironically, the number one solution - getting rid of Obama - will not be part of the party platform.

September 5, 2012

I was right: Obama was behind Dems flip flop on God

Earlier I posted my thoughts on Obama being behind the removal of God and Jerusalem from the Democratic party platform party platform for personal electoral reasons.  I said he was behind it all. It turns out I was right at least about him being behind it.  

Via Big Government (emphasis added):
The Democratic National Convention, reeling from today’s chaotic fiasco surrounding the reinsertion of pro-Israel, pro-God language into the party platform, has announced that President Obama personally intervened to ensure that that language was revived. But Politico is now reporting that President Obama approved the original, Jerusalem-less, Hamas-less language less than a fortnight ago. He didn’t try to change the platform “until after Republicans jumped on the omissions of God and Jerusalem late Wednesday.” And his own party was clearly against it – the people on the floor of the convention probably didn’t even vote in majority numbers for the reinsertion of pro-Israel, pro-God language. They booed Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, the DNC chairman, off the stage after he rammed through the measure on the third vote.
That was fast.

Democrats' Flip Flops Fly?

Democrats change their platform on God and Jerusalem, and then change it back at the behest of Dear Leader while the arena is filled with boos.
Needled by Mitt Romney and other Republicans, Democrats hurriedly rewrote their convention platform Wednesday to add a mention of God and declare Jerusalem the capital of Israel after President Barack Obama intervened to order the changes.

The embarrassing reversal was compounded by chaos and uncertainty on the convention floor, requiring three votes before a ruling that the amendments had been approved. Many in the audience booed the decision.

The episode exposed tensions on Israel within the party, put Democrats on the defensive and created a public relations spectacle as Obama arrived in the convention city to claim his party's nomination for a second term.
My two cents - this was all an Obama play for the middle.  They changed the party platform and Obama and team didn't know about it?  That's hard to believe.  Not only do i not believe that, I bet team Obama asked them to do it so that he could demand they put God back in.

Think of the timing of the sudden Obama intervention and reversal of the party platform.  It's on the same day as Clinton speaks to fire up the center-left wing of the party.  The Democrats need more of the voters from the middle if they want to fend off a Romney slow roll towards the presidency. I think Obama ordered the change so he could look distant from the far-left wing of the Democrat party.  He's a moderate by comparison.

The booing in the hall?  Maybe they ordered that too.  If they didn't, the optics are terrible.  If they did, the optics may be just what Obama wanted.  Will it work? It might make a small difference.  This time around a small difference could be a big difference.

It sounds cynical, but with this bunch, I think that's the right frame of mind to view events.

The one Democrat speech that matters

Last night Michelle Obama performed well in her speech.  There was a host of other unimportant speeches.  The Anne Romney speech and the Michelle Obama speech both served their purposes, both spoke well enough, neither was a game changer, though I think Anne Romney's speech may have done a little more good for her husband.  But there really is only one Democratic speech that matters - more than anyone's, even Barack Obama's.  I'm speaking of course of Bill Clinton's speech tonight.

Obama's speech has been minimized.  In terms of his effect, he's really going to be preaching to the choir and a small subset of undecided voters.  Just like Mitt Romney's speech it was not a game changer, neither will Obama's be. It won't change a lot of minds, even if the press exalts it, which you know they will.  Obama will get more of a bounce than Romney - they'll make sure of that.  But it will still be small.

The real potential to change the game lies with Bill Clinton. He can make things really bad for Obama, or he could make things marginally better or even more for the president if he can convince people that he and Obama are cut from the same centrist cloth (for the record, I do not believe Clinton was a centrist, he was pragmatic and also benefited from the existence of one Ross Perot).  If Clinton can carry off that message, and he actually is better at connecting with voters than president Obama, then it might swing the election.

I don't think he'll pull it off, but his is still the only speech I'm interested in because I'm curious to see if there are some subtle back-handed compliments for the president.  Whether Hillary Clinton wants back in the White House or not, I'm sure Bill does.  Bill has his own agenda and it points to 2016.  It probably won't be evident in his speech but it could be there in some subtle ways.

And for this I might have to miss some of the NFL season open tonight.  Oh wait, Clinton won't matter either.

Hollow Man

It's even more poignant now than it was when it happened that Clint Eastwood riffed on the empty chair president, given that the DNC has cancelled the arena rock presidential acceptance speech that was to happen at Charlotte's 74,000 seat Bank of America stadium because there's a 20% chance of rain. Instead they will go with a smaller venue.

Empty chair president, meet empty stadium throng of worshippers.

The irony is delicious.  Keep in mind the RNC went on with their convention in the face of Hurricane Isaac.  Not because they were insensitive - they in fact shortened from 4 days to 3 - but because they weren't led by "suspend your campaign" McCain. The were sensitive about potential damage and injury that might result from the hurricane, but they knew that suspending the convention was a bad idea.  

What did the Democrats learn from that?  Nothing.  Apparently scaling back is still okay.  In any case they really couldn't apply that lesson here, since they weren't really suspending anything but rather scaling back.

Bonus Irony:  The Democrats had already shortened their campaign from 4 days to 3 due to money problems, which of course they blamed on uh, er, logistics

Bonus Irony 2: The location of the acceptance speech (Time Warner Cable Arena) is where the NHL's Carolina Hurricanes play.

The common elements of all of this? Empty suit, empty stadium, empty rhetoric and wind.  You do the math.

Government of the Borg, By the Borg

Finally, the proof we need that the Democrats, are the Borg.  This is an actual video from the Democratic National Committee:

September 4, 2012

Gingrich pops off on Democrats

This is the reason I wanted to see Gingrich debate Obama this fall.  His take no prisoners attitude and fearless approach, combine with a calm, sequential approach to his argument is just terrific.

Obama venue like Obama speech - over-promise, under-deliver

Empty chair, meet empty stadium.
Call him president downgrade.  Obama promised everything in 2008.  I think I recall him saying we'd have solar-powered flying cars by the end of his first term in office. I don't have one. Maybe he didn't promise that one.  He did promise oceans would stop rising and crazy numbers of jobs would be created and the deficit would be cut in half and he'd end the war, and scads of other stuff. Come to think of it, the one thing he didn't promise as far as I recall, was to capture or kill Osama Bin Laden.  But I digress.  The point is president Obama has under-delivered on his vast list of promises.

So why should his 2012 convention speech be anything but more over-promising?  That's something for voters to bear in mind while listening to it.

My Favorite 2012 RNC convention speech

My favorite RNC convention speeches: Condi Rice, with Marco Rubio a close second.  Both speeches were terrific. Both serve as a palate cleanser for the DNC speeches to come this week.  I'll probably be revisiting this page myself a few times this week.

September 3, 2012

10 political lessons from Julius Caesar

With the GOP convention finished and the Democratic convention about to fire up, it seems like a good time to share some insights brought to us centuries ago by William Shakespeare, via the stage play Julius Caesar.

These lessons seem to be often forgotten in today's political climate.  Nevertheless they are important lessons and a reminder is always a good thing.

Not all of these lessons are overtly political at first blush - many apply more readily to everyday life - but there are some keenly applications important nevertheless.


An effective new RNC ad;


September 2, 2012

Bipartisanship Can't Work With Incompatible World Views

Here's why, simply, and in under 6 minutes.

It underscores the importance of this election cycle.

Obama flinches on Israel

He's done it again.  The president has abandon Israel.  He flinched, like he frequently has with Israel, in the face of an Iranian threat.

The details of the flinch via Time:
Seven months ago, Israel and the United States postponed a massive joint military exercise that was originally set to go forward just as concerns were brimming that Israel would launch a strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities. The exercise was rescheduled for late October, and appears likely to go forward on the cusp of the U.S. presidential election. But it won’t be nearly the same exercise. Well-placed sources in both countries have told TIME that Washington has greatly reduced the scale of U.S. participation, slashing by more than two-thirds the number of American troops going to Israel and reducing both the number and potency of missile interception systems at the core of the joint exercise.

“Basically what the Americans are saying is, ‘We don’t trust you,’” a senior Israeli military official tells TIME.

The reductions are striking. Instead of the approximately 5,000 U.S. troops originally trumpeted for Austere Challenge 12, as the annual exercise is called, the Pentagon will send only 1,500 service members, and perhaps as few as 1,200. Patriot anti-missile systems will arrive in Israel as planned, but the crews to operate them will not. Instead of two Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense warships being dispatched to Israeli waters, the new plan is to send one, though even the remaining vessel is listed as a “maybe,” according to officials in both militaries.
The context?  The president doesn't want to be complicit in any pre-emptive strike on Iran. Did the president flinch because he fears a full scale war with Iran?  Not likely.  He flinched because the military exercise got postponed to a time too close to the election for him to be able to sit on both sides of the fence.

He's got those on the left thinking he's too cozy with Israel and isn't doing enough to help the Palestinians - like this Washington Post article from 2009:
President Obama came into office insisting that his administration would press hard and fast to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But after nine months, analysts and diplomats say, the administration's efforts have faltered in part because of its own missteps.

As Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton made clear during her Middle East trip, which ended Wednesday, U.S. officials are now promoting new tactics -- what they called the "baby steps" of lower-level talks -- to bring the Israeli and Palestinian leaders together for direct talks.

But the dynamics have changed since Obama named a special envoy to the region on his second day in office and tried to make a fresh start. Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, whom the administration once would have been happy to see undermined, has been strengthened -- while Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, whom the administration had hoped to bolster, has been weakened.
That about says it:  "....would have been happy to see [Netanyahu] undermined".  Therein lies the true intent of the president.  Obama has never been a friend to Israel, there are numerous examples of that.  So the flinch in supporting an ally is not about fear of Iran - they have done little to halt the Iranian nuclear program and Israel is clearly expendable.  Which means the reason for the flinch is timing, which means it's political.  What that means is that the president is not being honest with Americans and Jewish voters.  He wants your vote, but he doesn't care about the Promised Land. 

I'm conservative and racist

I have a confession to make -- I'm conservative and I'm a racist.  Okay, at least according to liberal doctrine I'm a racist. A couple of my recent posts seem to support that conclusion. Each night after the convention speeches I posted some quick, first-instinct assessments of the speeches.  There seems to be a pattern in my assessments that looks like it might be racist.  Parenthetically, I should add, I'm a middle-aged white guy, which makes the racism on my part extra evil.

September 1, 2012

Saturday Learning Series - Praxeology

The Austrian School of economics, as described by Hans-Hermann Hoppe and Jörg Guido Hülsmann, is explained in an 11 part lecture series. The previous lecture can be found here.

This particular lecture focuses on praxeology. What is that? The term was coined by the famous Austrian school economist Ludwig von Mises. But it's meaning is a bit tricky to explain, but it ties into free will and the study of how human action relates to the idea that when a specific condition holds true, a particular action should be taken. That's not highly instructive, the video explains it better.

Intended or not, the Clint Eastwood speech was tactically brilliant

Over at the Blog de King Shamus, the Clint Eastwood speech "fallout" gets put to bed:
Everybody’s second-favorite community organizer Saul Alinksy said that ridicule is man’s most potent weapon. It works so well because it rallies your troops. Even better, when a well-played joke lands squarely on target, it causes problems for the other side. Look at how the Stalinists were so discombobulated by Clint’s mockery of their Saviour. When they went into Panic Alert Obama Defense Level Five, they spent a lot of time addressing Clint’s speech rather than dealing with Mitt Romney.
It's a great point.  You know that the Doomocrats will go hard after Romney and Ryan at their convention this week, but by focusing all of their panic on Clint Eastwood's speech right now, they ignore the content of the Romney speech and thereby stall their attacks on Romney for a little while. The whole Democratic approach to this election was to demonize Romney (and Ryan).  Demonizing Clint Eastwood doesn't help them one iota.  Not one.  No one will be voting for Clint Eastwood in 2012.  No one will be voting against him or against Romney based on Eastwood either.

What this does, is allows Romney's convention bounce to gain some traction and avoids the risk of the liberal attacks derailing the bounce.  The Democrats by positioning their convention right after the Republicans clearly want to suck the strength out of the natural convention bounce for the Republicans.  The Clint Eastwood speech whether intended or not, swayed the focus of liberal attacks to his supposedly oddball speech and Mitt Romney gets a few days of a free ride.

The other tactical brilliance of Eastwood's speech is what it did for Republicans.  A favorite Obama trick is to supposedly remain above the fray while surrogates - 'not connected with the president' mind you - serve as attack dogs.  Eastwood got in some zingers about the president in the middle of a convention that was focused on the approach that it's okay to change your mind about Obama.  Yes, he's a nice guy (ha!) but he's not a good president.  It's time for a change, because the country deserves and needs better.  That message can't be inter-mingled with attacks.  Clint Eastwood says those things and while he's a Republican supporter, he's arms length from team Romney.

Now when Democrats go into their convention armed for Bain, they are going to play to their playbook and attack Romney and Ryan.  They'll look petty while Romney gets to stay above the partisan fray and focus on economic policy and jobs.

In retrospect, Eastwood's speech may have done a lot more good for the Republican cause than at first blush.  That makes my day.

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