Think Twice About Newt
Editorial - November 29th, 2011 - Washington Examiner
Gingrich's wonkish delight in industrially rationed health care may come as a shock to some on the Right, but it is entirely consistent with his long-standing enthusiasm for individual mandates in health care. In his 2005 book, "Winning the Future," Gingrich put it this way: "We need some significant changes to ensure that every American is insured, but we should make it clear that a 21st Century Intelligent System requires everyone to participate [emphasis added] in the insurance system."
More recently, as The Examiner's Byron York noted yesterday, Gingrich has been seen as an ultimate Washington insider, as exemplified in that $1.6 million he was paid to represent Fannie and Freddie, and his work with Nancy Pelosi on behalf of cap-and-trade. Such facts make it difficult not to view Gingrich as an exemplar of Washington's professional Republican politicians who talk the talk to get elected, but often don't walk it once in office.
Gingrich's surge to the top of the polls follows Republican enthusiasm for first Donald Trump, then Michele Bachmann, Ron Paul, Rick Perry and Herman Cain. There are already some who are touting the super Christian Rick Santorum as the next hot candidate. Can even the progressive John Huntsman be far behind in his turn on top?
It is clear that a number of voters are desperate for someone who is "the perfect conservative" but unwilling to actually research any of the candidates to dig out what they stand for. I have supported Rick Perry from the start, based on his strong record of conservative accomplishments that are real.
One accomplishment that many Republicans seem indifferent to is the tough battle to fix the major flaws in our court system that led to abusive judgments. To fight a battle against the entrenched power of the bar lobby was an incredible victory for conservatives. Yet many conservatives seem indifferent to Perry's accomplishment. I find that attitude bizarre.
Rick Perry also has a fantastic record on illegal immigration, having spent close to half a billion Texas dollars doing the federal job of policing the border. The ridiculous misrepresentation of his record on the Arizona law and his pragmatic position on 'in-state tuition' for a small percentage of illegal alien children have left most conservatives delusional about what his real record is. How can they not understand what he truly stands for?
I still support Rick Perry based on the research I conducted.
It frightens me that the Republican Party could have ever considered the left wing big government progressive Donald Trump a serious candidate over such a useless issue as Obama's birth certificate. Trump is the classic corrupt crony capitalist. Support for the lightweight legislative record of Michele Bachmann still concerns me too. There is no track record of executive experience in her background. What could have led to her surge in the polls? Ron Paul is probably the best candidate on some critical issues, yet despite his record of military service, I find his stands on many foreign affairs issues amateurish. The same criticism applies to the businessman Herman Cain, whose own success is far too easily explained by his riding affirmative action promotions to positions that his track record did not deserve. Cain's business successes are not that impressive either, considering that before he took over Godfather's Pizza (his main claim to fame) it was arguably the fifth largest Pizza chain in America and when he left it was about tenth, where it remains to this day. He is incompetent on most issues of foreign affairs, the most important aspect of a President's job. Gingrich is now surging despite a track record that is filled with serious concerns about his ego. He has never shown consistent support for conservative values unless they served his personal goals and many conservatives feel betrayed. He has abandoned the conservative cause when it served him. Is this history really that hard to discover?
Each Republican candidate in turn, even Rick Perry, enjoyed a surge not based on an assessment of their overall track record, but superficial enthusiasm for the hot new thing. Doesn't that sound a lot like the way America works today? The same logic applies to our entertainers and our consumer products. We buy the hot thing with little research. He (or she) is hot. He (or she) must be great. Such childish actions led to the election of Barack Obama.
Obama must go, so I will vote for whoever wins the Republican nomination. Yet the superficial process and the lack of seriousness in how a majority of the Republican voters are making their decision is truly frightening.
Be Thankful That
Doomsday Never Comes
by Sy Harding - November 26th, 2011 - Forbes
Headlines have been full of gloom and doom for some time: high unemployment, the housing industry in a depression, record government debt, governments dysfunctional, and on and on.
Fear-mongers and ‘big picture’ theorists are having a field day with it all.
Here’s something to be thankful for.
Those long-term doomsday scenarios that always pop up during bad times are the result of simply extending whatever is the current trend in a straight line into the future. They almost never materialize because they don’t allow for the changes that take place before they can materialize.
That last paragraph is among one of the few assessments in this article that are actually correct. It is true that trend lines never continue in the same direction.
However it is inaccurate to imply from that the horrors forecast do not come true for a time and for a number of people. The people whose lives were devastated by the high interest rates and inflation of the late 1970s and early 1980s where not compensated by the fact that those who had money made out well. The devastated spent a lot more than one decade paying off the burdens that government inflicted on them.
In his dismissal of Reagan's job creation reversal of unemployment under Carter, the writer blames Reagan for compromises he was forced to make with an overwhelming Democrat congress to attain more important goals in getting the nation moving. Reagan is blamed for consequences of policies he fought against just because he compromised for the greater good.
That some people made out during the boom and bust of the 90s does not mean that lives were not destroyed in the process, even if large government revenues during the boom allowed for a period of sanity in paying down debt. If you focus on that one issue of debt as Harding does (since we are once again running up debt, this time at a rate that Jimmy Carter would have been proud of) it is easy (but not accurate) to dismiss the consequences that are coming again as solely Reagan's fault.
The writer has accepted the premise that Reagan did not win the cold war by his defense spending, blithely calling his "buildup" a "stimulus". He even equates it to the "stimulus" goal of the progressives. However Reagan never spent that money to prop up the economy and it is curious that progressives usually denounce his spending because it did not improve the economy. It was the vast reduction in regulations and taxes that resulted in the economic boom. The Reagan spending was intended to save America by winning the cold war. Now Progressives are changing their perspective to claim Reagan agrees with their inflated spending theories.
This writer advocates the premise that things are really not that bad right now and if we just muddle along everything will come out okay. He seems to have missed the consequences of this kind of thinking by progressives in the 1930s. Hitler and Stalin were real. That America did not experience them as directly as their own people does not mean that doomsday did not come for the tens of millions who died at their hands. That the world recovered and experienced the massive growth of the post world war years did not bring those people back to life.
We are heading for economic and military doomsday scenarios similar to the 1930s. I agree the world will not end for everyone. At the other end of the bad times there will still be a planet earth and there will still be people. For some of them the good times will return. That is hardly acceptable if millions are dead, millions more are enslaved and tyranny rules most nations.
Alice In Liberal Land
by Thomas Sowell - November 22, 2011 - Townhall.com
"Alice in Wonderland" was written by a professor who also wrote a book on symbolic logic. So it is not surprising that Alice encountered not only strange behavior in Wonderland, but also strange and illogical reasoning -- of a sort too often found in the real world, and which a logician would be very much aware of.
If Alice could visit the world of liberal rhetoric and assumptions today, she might find similarly illogical and bizarre thinking. But people suffering in the current economy might not find it nearly as entertaining as "Alice in Wonderland."
Perhaps the most remarkable feature of the world envisioned by today's liberals is that it is a world where other people just passively accept whatever "change" liberals impose. In the world of Liberal Land, you can just take for granted all the benefits of the existing society, and then simply tack on your new, wonderful ideas that will make things better.
Casual dismissal of unintended consequences never seems to bother liberals. For one thing, they never accept them as something for which they can be held accountable or have the least responsibility. If the world does not work as they wish it, just like Barack Obama, they always insist it is the fault of someone else.
It is George W. Bush's fault (ignoring liberal support for the stimulus and bailout actions he took in his last year). It is the fault of a 'do nothing' congress (ignoring liberals control half the congress as well as the executive branch). It is the fault of Wall Street (ignoring that most on Wall Street are liberals who prefer big government). It is the fault of the Tea Party movement (ignoring the recent Tea Party movement never had anything to do with creating the deficits, or anything else for that matter). Disagree with them and they will go ballistic and scream at you to "wait a minute, this is not my fault!"
Our nation's master philosopher calls it 'illogic'. He explains that it is merely an escape from reality. He is right as usual. It is still an evil process by which liberty is destroyed.
What Is A Progressive
by John C. Goodman - November 19th, 2011 - Townhall.com
When is the last time you heard a liberal describe himself as a "liberal"? It’s probably been a long time. These days, those on the left are more likely to call themselves "progressives."
Writing in The New York Times, Columbia University economist Jeffrey Sachs said there have been two progressive eras — one in the early 20th century and the second under Franklin Roosevelt. He called on modern liberals to usher in a third era.
But what exactly is "progressivism"? To many people, the term "Progressive Era" evokes fond caricatures of Teddy Roosevelt and such reforms as safe food, the elimination of child labor and the eight-hour work day. Yet real progressivism was far more sinister.
Much of the horror of man's history is the failure of people to understand our history and what has come before. The evil described in this article is not some fiction, but a reality of what real Americans suffered under the earliest vestiges of the progressive movement. Of course the real horror is the suffering that occurred during the depression because of the unintended consequences of the anti capitalist FDR. Even his own Treasury Secretary came to understand how miserably they had failed. Morgenthau said “We have tried spending money. We are spending more than we have ever spent before and it does not work. . . . After eight years of this administration we have just as much unemployment as when we started . . . and an enormous debt to boot!”
In the process they extended the depression for a decade longer than it should have lasted. Of course there is nothing worse than a politician who refuses to conceded he is wrong. And progressives are always politicians.
This is an excellent article and should be read by anyone who loves freedom. It is unfortunate but the progressive Barack Obama is rapidly creating the same tyranny that Wilson created in his day. Obama still has a way to go, but he is making more progress that we can tolerate.
How Congress Occupied Wall Street
by Sarah Palin - November 18th, 2011 - Wall Street Journal
Mark Twain famously wrote, "There is no distinctly native American criminal class except Congress." Peter Schweizer's new book, "Throw Them All Out," reveals this permanent political class in all its arrogant glory. (Full disclosure: Mr. Schweizer is employed by my political action committee as a foreign-policy adviser.)
Mr. Schweizer answers the questions so many of us have asked. I addressed this in a speech in Iowa last Labor Day weekend. How do politicians who arrive in Washington, D.C. as men and women of modest means leave as millionaires? How do they miraculously accumulate wealth at a rate faster than the rest of us? How do politicians' stock portfolios outperform even the best hedge-fund managers'? I answered the question in that speech: Politicians derive power from the authority of their office and their access to our tax dollars, and they use that power to enrich and shield themselves.
If you wonder why so many Republicans who claim to be conservative joined in the Alinsky smears of Sarah Palin, this article will tell you why. Sarah Palin is not a part of the inside the beltway corrupt crony capitalist wing of the Republican Party. She is in fact its enemy. I find it amusing how many of these Republican insiders sneer at Palin's efforts to make money legally (writing and speaking) as profiting from her popularity, when at the same time they secretly profit from insider knowledge and special consulting.
Okay. I know that is smearing everyone with a broad brush. Yet I find it hard to see it as anything but true.
At this very moment one of the lead stories gaining attention is how Newt Gingrich secretly received $.18 million from Freddy Mac. Is there any organization less compatible with conservative values than a giant corrupt financial institution that has lost trillions of American tax payer dollars throwing money at the consequences of a tax law created housing boom that destroyed the value of the primary investment vehicle of the average American, their home?
First they pass a law insisting that banks had to loan to minorities even when they were not capable of repaying the loan. Then they pass a law insisting that any profits from capital gains were taxed at vastly lower rates than dividends. Next they allow bundling of mortgages to be treated as low risk securities in the classic scam that was last tried during the great depression. Voila. A boom and bust cycle that leaves America destitute and creates a recession.
What on earth would persuade anyone that Newt Gingrich was not doing as Freddy Mac insisted, 'consulting' on how to keep Republicans on board with the sub-prime mortgage scam?
Yet Newt Gingrich is the new hot Republican candidate, surging to the top. His previous narcissistic behavior, his support for global warming against all logic, his ability to take any side of any issue and tout brilliant explanations of why he is always right, his incompetent management of his own campaign, his smearing Clinton for sexual transgressions while he is at the same moment cheating on his wife, his secret profiting from insider deals - all these horrible flaws are forgiven. No one cares if he is proven to be a corrupt crony capitalist who got on the government gravy train to self enrichment.
How can this be? How can someone derided as being stupid, such as Sarah Palin, see the obvious corruption when so many Republicans cannot? Is it because they are "brilliant" like Newt Gingrich?
The Equality Racket
by Pat Buchanan - November 11th, 2011 - Townhall.com
Equality, egalite, was what the French Revolution, the Bolshevik Revolution, Mao's Revolution of 1949, Castro s Revolution of 1959 and Pol Pot s revolution of 1975 claimed to be about.
This was the Big Lie, for all those revolutions that triumphed in the name of equality were marked by mass murders of the old ruling class, the rise of a new ruling class more brutal and tyrannical, and the immiseration of the people in whose name the revolution was supposedly fought.
Invariably, Power to the people! winds up as power to the party and the dictator, who then act in the name of the people. The most egalitarian society of the 20th century was Mao's China. And that regime murdered more of its own than Lenin and Stalin managed to do.
Inequality is the natural concomitant of freedom.
It is sad that so few in America of today understand this simple truth. The following is not the last sentence in the article, but it should be:
"Yet, behind the latest crusade against inequality lie motives other than any love of the poor. They are resentment, envy and greed for what the wealthy have, and an insatiable lust for power."
[John] McCain predicts rise of third political party
by Steve Holland and David Alexander - November 8th, 2011 - Reuters
Senator John McCain predicted on Tuesday a third political party will emerge in response to Americans' economic frustrations and said it might as well be called "the Fed-Up Party."
The Republican Party's presidential nominee in 2008 raised the possibility of a third party about a year ago, but his comments on Tuesday suggest he has hardened his views as polls show Americans increasingly disillusioned with Washington politics.
With nearly a third of all political registrations rejecting both major parties, this prediction is not all that surprising. It is clear that the Tea Party movement accomplished a great deal by focusing solely on economic issues that directly affect individual freedom. However that focus is a weakness when the war by Islamo-facists continues and foreign affairs are growing as a crisis that our nation must address.
The George W. Bush solution, nation building, has proved an abject failure. If another party is to succeed, someone must start a movement that develops a coherent plan to survive in a global community that envies our wealth, hates our culture and wants to destroy our nation.
The Tea Party is still supporting a man who is totally naive about foreign affairs, Herman Cain. That is the reason I no longer participate in Tea Party activities. I agree we must change the culture of spend, spend and spend. However that is not by itself enough to matter in a world rapidly heading toward nuclear Armageddon.
Sanctions Won't Stop
Iran's Nuclear Bomb Program
by Reza Kahlili - November 8th, 2011 - American Thinker
Years of negotiations and sanctions have failed to stop Iran from its pursuit of a nuclear bomb and its missile program, nor have they convinced the jihadists in Tehran to change behavior. Today Iran holds enough enriched uranium for six nuclear bombs, has over 1,000 ballistic missiles, and is tripling its production of highly enriched uranium.
Iran's strategy has been effective: First, buy time with promises of holding talks and denying any illicit nuclear activity. Second, engage the United States in Iraq and Afghanistan through proxies, believing that it would make it difficult and costly for the U.S. to continue those operations and be forced to withdraw from the region. Last, incite uprisings within Islamic nations such as Bahrain, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, and others with the hope of overthrowing U.S.-backed governments while strengthening Iran's own position through its proxies in the region.
The Iranian leaders have concluded that due to the current events in the Middle East and the global economic crisis, the U.S. and the West have no option but to tolerate a nuclear-armed Iran and that any talk of military action is an empty bluff. A recent analysis in the Iranian Keyhan newspaper, under direct supervision of Khamenei's office, best describes their view: the U.S. has been defeated and soon will be buried.
The reality is that our strategy is failing. If we continue with a doomed strategy, the consequence will be the destruction of Israel, the destruction of America and the destruction of Western civilization. Even if some future administration wins the war against the Islamo-fascists, a continuation of our current strategy is going to result in a nuclear holocaust that will kill millions of Americans. It is clear that Geroge W. Bush and his neo-conservative advisors never understood that their efforts were futile. They convinced themselves that they could accomplish the impossible. Instead they wasted billions of dollars and thousands of lives while Iran moved forward with the primary program we should have been asking our military to defeat. The unintended consequences of our actions are unacceptable.
Even today there are many Republicans who do not understand what a stupid waste of money and lives our efforts in Afghanistan have been. Good intentions do not make up for failure. We must change course.
General Fuller's Career-Ending
Message for Americans
by Fred J. Eckert - November 8th, 2011 - American Thinker
One of America's top generals in Afghanistan was fired last Friday for making "inappropriate public remarks."
Major General Peter Fuller's career-destroying offense was to publicly criticize Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai for saying during an October 22nd interview with Pakistani news media that if the U.S. and Pakistan got into a war, he and Afghanistan would side with Pakistan in fighting against the United States. The general's critical comments were made during an interview Thursday with the left-leaning news website Politico.
"Why don't you just poke me in the eye with a needle? You've got to be kidding me. ... I'm sorry, we just gave you $11.6 billion, and now you're telling me, 'I don't really care?' " Fuller said.
The elite media is treating as a fairly big story General Fuller's being fired for saying what he said in public. Fair enough. But what the elite media have been missing and continue to miss -- and likely will keep right on missing -- is the bigger story of the bigger picture here.
Everything General Fuller said that got him fired is true and needs to be understood by the public and by the media.
What still grates is that this was happening even before Obama became President. The ongoing cover up of the corruption by Karzai's regime is an outrage, because it prohibits the American people from honestly assessing the ignorance of 'nation building' in Muslim countries. This insanity characterized George W. Bush's spending billions of dollars and allowing thousands of American deaths in Afghanistan. The 'nation building' program was clearly destined to fail because of the culture of these backward people.
That George W. Bush and his neo-conservative advisers wanted it to work is irrelevant. They were wrong. The program was, is and always will be a failure. At some point the failure becomes obvious. That point was passed back in 2007. When that happens and America does not abandon the effort, we are the fools.
There are still a number of people in the Republican Party who refuse to admit the failure of the 'nation building' effort in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Their stubborn insistence that these efforts are part and parcel of the existential war we must fight, defeating Islamo-fascism, does nothing except kill soldiers and waste money in a useless and futile battle. It weakens our nation as a result.
It is time to abandon this stupidity and get out of both countries. The two countries we really should be in at this point are Iran and Pakistan. What is happening in those two countries means a lot more to our survival than wasting time, money and blood in failed 'nation building' stupidity.