Days of Change

Day 1121 – The Center Cannot Hold

November 30, 2011
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We could use more hindsight these days. Three years after the fact, we learn that Henry Paulson manipulated hedge funds even before he was given the sole authority over Republican killer TARP. Around the same time, Barack Obama was running for president with even closer ties to Jeremiah Wright than even Sean Hannity lead us to believe in 2008.

This won’t sink Obama’s chances of winning in 2012, but it does exemplify his silly 2008 campaign. The problem with running under the guise of not being like the last president is that you probably have no actual skills to bring to the table. Like Carter before, when the voters learn that you’re a lousy president, you have no ideological consistency to develop your base.

I don’t think Obama is a Republican. I’m unconvinced that he is some kind of socialist. I can see everything he has done (or failed to do) as an attempt to pay back his donors and constituents, in that order. He got his money from Wall Street and his ground forces from government employee unions and the SEIU. He only started fighting for tax increases on the rich when Congress cut him off. Is he a Cloward-Piven type of radical who wants to destroy the American system of government? It doesn’t matter. a fully corrupt politicians will do the same thing as that kind of radical, overspend until the country collapses.

The debate over taxing the rich is over. The rich no longer have enough to cover the annual costs of the government. We must reduce spending regardless of what taxes are increased on higher incomes. Revenue increases are secondary to spending, much like the debate over what to do about illegal aliens is secondary to how to secure the borders. Obama created the Stimulus, the Stimulus created the Tea Party.

Now that Newt Gingrich is basking in the limelight, the fools at MSNBC’s Morning Joe are trying to get Jon Huntsman next in line when Gingrich falters. Joe Scarborough is using the scorched earth strategy, calling Newt and Romney liberals compared to Huntsman, even though Huntsman is the candidate who refuses to even call himself conservative. Maybe some Republicans and Democrats who oppose Obama think a right of center Republican is the best foil for Obama, but they’re wrong.

When Carter ran for president in 1976, he won on the fact that he wasn’t Richard Nixon or part of his administration. Plus, the GOP stupidly nominated Ford over Reagan because Reagan was too polarizing. Carter’s vision for American was of a screwed up place that needed a lot of work and his administration reflected it. Reagan may have had a radically conservative vision for America, but at least he had a vision. We all know how George Bush 41 felt about the “vision thing.”

Voters may not like Obama much, but Wall Street still plans to give him money and unions still plan to campaign for him (and give him money). The Republicans need people to turn out to counter that. They need a candidate with a vision to rally behind and a willingness to point out all the flaws of their opponent. Of course, that person is Sarah Palin so I’ll be waiting for her endorsement. Please don’t pick Mitt Romney.

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Day 1120 – The Wrong Question

November 29, 2011

I’ve mentioned the trick of taking a story, extracting the real point and then creating a fake point to hide the important aspect. If you look at immigration, this country has a problem where people are coming over illegally (the majority from Mexico) and staying without proper identification and subverting the legal process. The real question is how to have a process where the US has the immigration it needs and restricts the rest. The false narrative is that some people want to kick out productive illegal immigrants and rip them away from their children.

After the various path to citizenship remarks by Republicans in the last few days, talking points have sprung up. Talking about how to deal with illegal immigrants is pointless. Even if we legalized all illegals in the country, thousands more would quickly cross the border illegally. Securing the border is the key, along with keeping the availability of jobs down to a minimum. We already tried amnesty first. Let’s try to do it right this time.

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Day 1119 – It Just Might be a Lunatic You’re Looking for

November 28, 2011
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No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

The Constitution of the United States, Article II, Section 1

There are three qualifications to be president of the United States. You have to be a natural born citizen, at least 35 years old and be a resident for 14 years. The Constitution doesn’t even say you have to be white or a man. One president may not have even been a natural born citizen, Chester A. Arthur.

Every other qualification for the presidency is arbitrary. The executive branch has one simple task, decide close calls. The president can either sign or veto legislation, but can be overridden by a 2/3 majority. He can negotiate treaties, pending Congressional approval. When international business requires a head of state, the president is it.

When media personalities talk about qualifications, they mean previous experience being a politician. Generally, presidents are former governors. Others are former Vice Presidents. A small number held positions in Congress and jumped right into the White House. Most politicians at the federal level are lawyers. Nearly all judges are lawyers, too, even though there is no law requiring it.

If you look at Congress, you can tell it’s run by lawyers. They have mastered parliamentary process. The legislation is often voluminous and convoluted. Eliminating legislation always takes a back seat to compensatory legislation. The best way to fix bad law is to tweak it with more laws.

If you believe the political class, most of whom are the same legal minds who created the US government as it exists today, voting for a non-politician or one that isn’t deemed electable by a party is crazy. Benjamin Franklin, not a lawyer, said that doing the same thing over and expecting the same result is insanity. Maybe the electorate could do with going a little crazy.

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Day 1118 – ‘Tis the Season (for Atheists to Shut Up)

November 27, 2011
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Even in times of high religiosity, people always had different levels of faith. In certain countries, (you know which ones) religious activities are dictated by law. It’s not exactly an exercise in faith to do something when not doing it will get you in legal trouble. Christian countries tend to make religious activities part of cultural tradition. The people don’t demand businesses close on Sundays, but many do.

There are many people who are agnostic, living without faith in their lives. They may join in religious activities, but they don’t really seek it out. Then there are atheists, whose religion is to spread the word that there is no God. It is most definitely a belief system and some people dictate it to the masses with a religious fervor.

There is a special segment of celebrity atheists out there who frankly creep me out. It’s not because I fear some kind of universal truth, but what their beliefs have done to them. The worst is when I have to see or hear the traditional holiday season proclamations about how Jesus wasn’t born on Christmas, the Feast of Saint Nicholas has nothing to do with gifts and the tree and December are holdovers from the Druids . Guess what? Hamburgers were invented in Germany and pizza and fortune cookies are actually American foods. Take it to the set of Jeopardy.

I wouldn’t say there is a war on Christmas. That implies there are two distinct sides. Most of the time, Christmas marginalization is the result of the tyranny of factions. Some jerk does their best to feel offended and calls on an ACLU lawyer to shake down a business. When a cashier says “Merry Christmas,” they’re not issuing an order. When a business tells their cashier they can’t say it, that’s an order. Then again, why should I be surprised? Atheism and authoritarianism go together like nutmeg and egg nog.

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Day 1117 – The Heat is Off

November 26, 2011
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Hey, remember how Politico was the Herman Cain harassment story hub for about two weeks? Remember how there were two, then four, then five, then four again, then only two who spoke? One, of course, filed an actual charge.Then she filed another charge at her very next job. The other one didn’t even work for Cain.

This event started around the time Cain’s 9-9-9 plan had put him at the front of the pack, polling near 30%. After the allegations and his response, his numbers dropped in a matter of days. The media credited the loss of faith by women and others. Of course, at the same time, Cain had made a number of mistakes and outright incorrect statements.

Now, Herman Cain is in third place. He’s polling at about 15%. Somehow, the serious charges against him have lost their steam. That’s due to one simple factor. No one really cares about smearing the guy in third place. One of the funny things about Newt Gingrich being in first place now is that scandals have pretty much been wrung out of him. Heck, the infamous divorce story has been debunked by his daughter.

One sign that a political smear doesn’t have staying power is that it goes away when the candidate doesn’t have staying power. This story disappeared faster than most.

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Day 1116 – Poor Baby

November 25, 2011
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The new Mitt Romney Ad:

I’m no fan of Mitt Romney, but he may actually have an idea of what it would take to unseat Obama. The ad itself is pretty boiler plate stuff about how he’ll fix everything and repeal Romneycare Obamacare. What I enjoy is the media’s reaction to the ad.

“If we keep talking about the economy, we’re going to lose” is played from a recording of Barack Obama’s own words. Apparently, he was quoting a McCain aide when he spoke those words in 2008. First of all, that’s why you have to watch what you say. This reminds of a similar incident when Red Eye’s Greg Gutfeld pulled parts of Obama’s biography where he was quoting a sleazy friend.

Then there’s the fact that every quote preceding the one in question basically turned out to be a promise Obama failed to deliver. At least he’s telling the truth that the economy is a losing issue for him. Of course, there’s no way the media will fact check Obama in a Romney ad, so instead they and the White House went into overdrive outrage.

This is the key. It’s how Sarah Palin began to crack Obama. It’s how Netanyahu made Obama lose it about 10 seconds after the camera was off. You have to make him angry. You have to make him a joke. You have to treat him like a bad student. The media will follow. The DNC has produced 2 ads already to counter a line to whom most people who saw the Romney ad probably didn’t even pay attention. Someone’s pissed and they took time out of their schedule to whine about it.

Romney’s people are getting smart. They said it was taken out of context, but Obama took it out of context 3 years ago. Then they said that they’ll keep doing these ads just because it enrages the White House. Jay Carney even brought it up. I guess jobs was the number 2 priority in that press conference. If this keeps up, I might not have to hold my nose the whole time I vote for Romney.

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Day 1115 – Here We Go Again

November 24, 2011

Governor Reagan, who in most cases does typify his party, but in some cases there is a radical departure by him from the heritage of Eisenhower and others.

-James Earl Carter

If a poll were taken today, Jon Huntsman would be first, Romney second. Cain, Bachmann and Gingrich would be near the bottom. That poll would be of people who will be voting for Barack Obama in 2012. The idea that radical and extreme candidates are bad and will lose elections is firmly held in the minds of Republicans. In reality, it mostly applies to Democrats.

In 2008, Mitt Romney tried to claim the conservative mantle against “maverick” John McCain. The same people who like Huntsman but will settle for Romney now were the ones who thought Giuliani was a shoo-in for 2008. Instead, the primary voters liked Mike Huckabee, who became Romney’s focus of attack. Now, Romney is trying to thread the needle.

I’d like to say it’s a matter of picking the more solidly conservative candidate, but there’s a problem in the Republican Party itself. Republicans have had a taste of power since 1994 and grew accustomed to it. There has been an effort to consolidate power and moderate candidates. It almost always means defeat for Republicans. These people would rather a Democrat win than let a Tea Party candidate take their job. Alaska, Nevada, Delaware and NY-23 proved that.

Then there’s Sarah Palin. She was a last-minute choice when someone managed to talk McCain out of his “fusion” ticket with Joe Lieberman. I imagine the strategy was that disaffected Democrats who supported Hillary Clinton would prefer a female running mate. For the sake of gravitas, it should be a governor. Between the governor of Alaska and the governor of Hawaii, Palin was the better fit.

What followed was one of those political accidents like Teddy Roosevelt or Calvin Coolidge where a person outside of the political machine made it to running mate. Palin is the model of a citizen politician. She started in the PTA and eventually made it to governor. She is the GOP’s closest thing to an ambassador to the Tea Party Nation and she’s a solid conservative. And Democrats who don’t like Obama like her.

Winning this election means going hard negative on Obama. The Republicans who might otherwise sit out the election need to be energized and those thinking of voting Obama again need their spirits crushed. Romney may be capable of it, but we know for certain Sarah Palin is. Republicans had better stop listening to Democrats warning of extremism. If your opponent prefers a candidate, run screaming to the one they mock.

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Day 1114 – Did I Miss Anything?

November 23, 2011
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I didn’t have much chance to watch TV or even read blogs on the internet today. Instead, I chose to contribute to the overexertion of the Internet by watching Canadian TV shows on Netflix.

I understand there was a debate last night. Cain looked dumb. Newt looked smart. Mitt looked bored. Bachmann knew her stuff and Perry should pack it in. Ron Paul apparently only wants to go to war after the country is nuked by terrorists.

Black Friday is coming in a few days. Occupiers have threatened to protest. Good luck. People have died at these things, and they weren’t even trying to block shoppers. Then again, death at an Occupy rally is not out of the question these days.

For my part, I’ll be eating the better part of a turkey tomorrow. Have a Happy Thanksgiving. Not having a GOP debate that day will help.

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Day 1113 – Perception Is Reality

November 22, 2011

Most Obama supporters fall on the left side politically. Still, they are the ones most likely to tout the fact that Obama didn’t raise taxes or take away guns. There’s a now infamous exchange between a CNN reporter and a Tea Party protester about how Obama is actually lowering their taxes. This tax “cut” is the federal equivalent of your employer taking away their 401K matching funds and putting them into your paycheck. It’s more money now, but you’ll be buying the bargain cat food at retirement.

Then there’s Obamacare. To the left who opposes Obama, it’s a big giveaway to insurance companies by a plan that was designed by the Heritage Foundation. To the right, it’s a scheme to make private insurance impossible and create de facto socialized medicine through exchanges.

It’s actually the MO of BO since his career in politics began. He preaches leftism, he talking conservatism in private and he does neither when it counts. The early part of his administration reflected the overconfident Democratic majority. The second half represents the gamesmanship of a Republican Party only halfway in power. He’s a do nothing president who lets things get done in his name.

The numbers tell us that he has exploded the debt by more than the Reagan and Bush Administrations combined. His last “jobs” plan of a Stimulus led to a higher unemployment rate and less seemed to get done when the Democrats had a virtual rubber stamp than now, when the Republicans get blamed for the decisions of two branches of government.

At least the Obots seem to think their president is conservative. I’m just not sure why they like that.

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Day 1112 – The Last Temptation of Congress

November 21, 2011
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The so-called “Super Committee” seems to be like the Democratic Super Delegates, an excessively powerful sub-group that does even less good than the whole. In this case, it has admitted defeat, which means Republican and Democratic mainstays take hits in the budget. I wouldn’t call it defeat, since the “cuts” won’t kick in for years and allocations can be increased in subsequent budgets along the way.

In a short time, the deadline will pass for the proposed budget to be posted publicly for 72 hours, making it impossible to vote on the bill by the date set forth in the original agreement over the summer. The sticking points are the same as always. Democrats want to increase taxes to put off making cuts. Republicans want to put off tax increases by cutting the items which grow the fastest, social programs. In this particular game of chicken, they’re jumping out of the car as it goes over the cliff.

Here’s something I thought about tonight. What if the cuts aren’t the problem, but the public review? Many other pieces of garbage regulation either had no public viewing period or avoided it by some legalistic measure. Imagine if they passed this revised spending plan by throwing in a bunch of pork projects and insider trading opportunities like they usually do. If people found these things in the bill and let them be known, Congressmen could not plead ignorance after the fact. Instead, they decided to let the previous decision stand. What if the public review period could actually keep Congress honest, or at least less obviously corrupt?

It might be the first good use of the Internet since Al Gore invented it.

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