Friday, July 31, 2009

Threat to Healthcare Freedom Advances in House

The Threat to American Freedom known as HR3200 cleared the House Energy Committee, 31-28. Blue Dogs Bart Gordon (Tenn.), Baron Hill (Ind.), Mike Ross (Ark.), and Zack Space (Ohio) vote yes. The Pelosi Poodles in the end come to heel.

This bill includes allowing for taxpayer funded abortions. An amendment to limit that was defeated By strongarm tactics.

What to do now? Just call 1-800-211-0907 and voice your opinion on AARP’s dime. Join a Recess Rally.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Heckled politician manicures his wikipedia entry

A Hilarious heckling video of Toledo Mayoral Candidate Ben Konop gets whitewashed in Wikipedia, and Newsbusters finds: "Checking the history, a user "BKonop" is repeatedly removing a "Controversies" section of the article. ... It just seems a bit unseemly that the possible subject of the article is repeatedly removing a "Controversies" section,"

Now, that's funny. A guy so lame that his press conference gets run off by a lone heckler, and he's hacking wikipedia to whitewash his real story (including broken promises). That's worth heckling a guy over.

Birther Madness

Here's conspiracy theory for ya: The liberal MSM is keeping the 'birther' story alive as a way to distract from Obama's other troubles (see "ObamaScare" and consider that most Americans thought him stupid to call cops 'stupid') and as a way to call the right-winger crackpots.

Brilliantly, Mark Steyn at the NRO's corner cited it as what a real conspiracy theorist would believe. So, birthers, get with the program: Obama was really born in Hawaii after all and this whole birther madness is a ruse to get you to ignore his airbrushed biography and his far-left agenda that's currently flaming out.


We have dodged a bullet of the destruction of our freedom ... for now. Obama's fast track to ObamaCare in the ObamaNation has been delayed. Congress will recess without the Congressional vote Obama wanted on a healthcare bill.

The first speed bump was the CBO, noting that millions who lose their private health insurance, the deficit would balloon by hundreds of billions, and claimed savings in Medicare would be miniscule. The glue putting the ObamaCare package together was 'cost savings' and we are finding out the ugly truth: There are no 'cost savings' to massive additional intrusion into health care; there is only reductions in health care via rationing and via Orwellian 'kill Granny' quality-of-life judgements that with-hold care from those 'on their way out anyway'. Surely we can save money in the healthcare system by not caring for people, but then that contradicts the whole point of the rush to reform anyway - the claim that we had to cover additional Americans with health insurance.

The bill he is pushing is a Trojan horse bill to drive America to single-payer socialized medicine. The fundamental flaw in the entire ObamaCare approach is that it will harm significantly more Americans than it helps, Americans who neither need nor want Government-run healthcare. This flaw is both policy and political. Polls have turned south on Obama in the past 60 days, reflecting the American people rejecting a radical socialist reshaping of our healthcare system. The people do not want wants in this bill: Higher taxes, mandates that kill jobs, restrictions on patient care, unfunded mandates to the state, taxpayer funded abortions. The list of calamaties in the bill goes on and on.

The Congress will recess without a vote on a bill, but a bill will be out there, crafted by the left-wing Democrat leaders like Rep Waxman, waiting to be voted on in the fall - HR 3200. We would be wise to study the bill.

A few rules for what we should NOT do in a healthcare bill:
1. No more taxes. We cannot afford at this time to be loaded down with higher taxes and higher deficits. Bigger Government is not 'reform'.
2. No mandates. No mandates on employers or employees. Mandates have been tried at the state level, and are creating more problems than solutions.
3. No 'kill Granny' policies. No Orwellian 'death with dignity' required sessions and attempts to push an agenda of healthcare denial to the elderly, solely to save costs.
4. No "public option", no socialized medicine. That is a single-payer Trojan horse that will kill off private insurance. Assurances by Democrats that it is not are belied by statements of many Democrats that it is precisely their expectation that Government-run health insurance will take over. The watered-down version of this, 'co-operatives', should be viewed with suspicion as well, since they are Government-managed and required Government subsidy. It's Government health insurance under another label.
5. No taxpayer-funded abortions. This and many other provisions in the bill are
6. No replacement of Doctors' decisions with Government decisions. We do not need a Government board to dictate terms of care. This is another step towards socialized medicine.
7. No unfunded mandates to states.

The Waxman bill breaks ALL those rules. The issue of the uninsured is not a crisis that require such a destructive wrecking of what is good about the US healthcare system. It's an issue that requires a surgical response, and we need to kill this bad bill first, start over and slowly and carefully craft and limited and targeted solution.

The US Senate Race is ON

Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison has told reporters she is 'all in' on the Governor's race and will resign in the fall from the US Senate. That means the US Senate race will be on, and a special election will be held next year (perhaps in May) to replace her.

Senatorial candidates - start your campaign engines. Of the announced candidates, I think the conservative and articulate Michael Williams would be best.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Marijuana News in Austin and California Offers Bleak Picture of Future; Bright Line Created

I've been struck recently by two newspaper stories that deal with marijuana, one here in Austin and one in California, where so many new Austinites are originating from these days.

The first, in the Austin Democrat Statesman, notes how "Police tie motive to drugs" in the murders of 21-year-old John Goosey and 22-year-old Stacy Barnett, because 19-year-old James "Ricky" Thompson owed money to Goosey.

Make no doubts about it. The blood money was drug money.

Goosey is described by police in the story as a "midlevel drug distributor who was bringing in "substantial amounts" of marijuana, repackaging it and selling it to others." In my book, "others" equals Austin dope smokers.

Thompson owed thousands of dollars to Goosey -- ostensibly he was one of Goosey's street sellers, though the Statesman is never so bold as to say so -- and wasn't paying Goosey.

Thompson thus felt his only option to clear the debt was to wipe out Goosey. Thompson killed Barnett for good measure it appears. Poor girl.

All you Austin dope smokers have Goosey and Barnett's blood on your hands, whether you want to think so or not.

So too will President Barack Obama have blood on his hands as a result of actions his administration has taken ending federal enforcement of state marijuana laws.

Goosey and Barnett were murdered Tuesday, July 21, just two days before the Wall Street Journal published its story "With 'Med Pot' Raids Halted, Selling Grass Grows Greener," that "in February, the Justice Department said it would adhere to President Barack Obama's campaign statement that federal agents no longer would target med-pot dealers who comply with state law."

(But before I go further, let's savor the tragic irony that this president, who is trying to exert federal control of nearly every other activity known to mankind, decides to let state laws govern marijuana. Also, could it be that med-pot might become a major component of ObamaCare, if passed.)

Anyway, the law in California is that if you have a hangnail, and can get a doctor to prescribe marijuana to reduce your pain, you can legally buy marijuana from growers and distributors who are complying with state laws. Up until Obama, the Feds did not think much of the law and would make occasional raids to root out legal and illegal medical excuses in California.

Now though, thanks to Obama, we'll see what a marijuana state produces. We'll have four years of results from California to watch and learn.

Here's some questions we can ask:

  • Will overall drug usage rates go up? Not just for marijuana, but other drugs as well.
  • Will drug-related murders go up?
  • Will industrial and commercial productivity go up or down?
  • Will divorces go up or down?
  • Will incarceration rates go up or down?
  • People are already leaving CA in droves -- many of them coming to Austin -- so will this trend continue, reverse or increase?
  • Will Californians who left California to come to the great state of Texas seek to poison Texas with medical marijuana laws in the same way they did California, and then leave?
  • Will Californians, in four years, see the devastation of free-wheeling marijuana on what's left of their society, and vote for a Republican president who'll reverse course?

Now, thanks to Obama, we'll be able to ask these and many more questions about the effects of marijuana on a large population -- in this case the most populous state in the nation -- between the bright line date of February 2009 and February 2012. It's a new ingredient and deserves serious attention.

The question is, will anyone other than a little ole blogger in Texas ask any questions?

Monday, July 27, 2009

Austinites are Motivated Against ObamaCare

Thanks to Bryan Preston, here's video from Saturday's counter-protest to Obama Care proponents. A great showing, mostly ignored by Austin news media:

Link to National Debt Clock

Great Link.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

QOTD: Jefferson on confidence in our leaders

"It would be a dangerous delusion were a confidence in the men of our choice to silence our fears for the safety of our rights... Confidence is everywhere the parent of despotism. Free government is founded in jealousy, and not in confidence. It is jealousy and not confidence which prescribes limited constitutions, to bind down those whom we are obliged to trust with power... Our Constitution has accordingly fixed the limits to which, and no further, our confidence may go... In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution."
--Thomas Jefferson: Draft Kentucky Resolutions, 1798. ME 17:388

UPDATE: Jefferson on lies -
"There is no vice so mean, so pitiful, so contemptible; and he who permits himself to tell a lie once, finds it much easier to do it a second and a third time, till at length it becomes habitual; he tells lies without attending to it, and truths without the world's believing him. This falsehood of the tongue leads to that of the heart, and in time depraves all its good disposition." --Thomas Jefferson

Hate Crime in East Austin?

Brick Thrown through a window in East Austin - "The brick, thrown through a 4-year-old boy’s bedroom window, read “Keep Eastside Black. Keep Eastside Strong.” The homeowner, Barbara Frische, who is white, said she has lived in the home for 10 years." Yet:

Police have not classified this incident as a hate crime, said Austin Police Sgt. Richard Stresing, because hate crimes target an individual specifically because of an identifying characteristic, like race. Police say the incident has been classified as criminal mischief and deadly conduct.

Clearly, if the colors were reversed, it would NOT be put down to mere "criminal mischief".

UPDATE: More Bad Austin Police decisions hitting the blogosphere. Great, a sting operation that ends up arresting neighbors concerned about abandoned vehicles left (by cops!) for days.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Simple Fixes to Health Care

We have each picked apart the Obama Healthcare Plan as well as we can with the information we have available. This plan scares people. The plan calls for an overhaul of the entire health insurance system to provide an additional 10-15% of Americans with insurance that do not currently have it. The end results of this plan are price fixing of government plans, which will in turn undercut private insurance and cause rationing of care. Not to mention that the federal government operates with higher administrative and overhead costs than private businesses, which will cause the cost of health care to increase even faster.

With health care costs spiraling out of control, there are some simple fixes that we should explore that will drive down the actual cost of health care and open the doors for people to purchase their own plans.
Fix #1:
The current federal tax system requires employers to purchase health insurance for their employees. This presents cookie-cutter approaches that drive up premiums because we are in common risk pools.

If the federal tax structure is changed to allow individuals to purchase their plans instead of employers, each individual could purchase the health care plan that meets their needs, much in the same way we currently purchase life insurance or car insurance.

Fix #2:
Examine what does not work and does not save money in Medicare and Medicaid. Many regulations are in place at the federal level that slows down the process of receiving health care, causes administrative hiccups in receiving reimbursements, and prevents a person from using the doctor of their choice.

Fix #3:
Provide methods to save doctors money on their overhead costs.

Tort reform, specifically, medical malpractice reform. The current health care system is about covering your butt instead of providing health care. Imagine if we empowered doctors instead of attorneys in the health care process! Doctors' insurance rates are increasing rapidly. Naturally, doctors must pass these costs on to customers. When third and fourth parties are involved in the costs the price naturally goes up because the direct parties are not responsible for setting the prices.

Doctors also leave medical school with thousands of dollars in loans and debt. To pay this off, they must pass the costs on to the individual (or the insurance company). Higher education is a whole other problem in itself, but imagine if students leaving medical school (or any other college, for that matter) did not leave with more personal debt then some small cities.

Every cost gets passed on to the consumer. The trick in health insurance is to drive down the actual cost of health care, which will drive down insurance costs. The government solution will not provide the cost efficiencies and lower costs necessary to drive down the actual cost of health care.

We must have solutions that empower individuals to make their own decisions and have options to deregulate the market. Driving down costs and providing more consumer options is the only way to truly improve both the costs and access to health care.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Leading America's 2nd Emancipation

I'm following Raging Elephants on twitter. Out of Houston and led by a black conservative radio talk show host who's "Leading America's 2nd Emancipation". Houstonians are getting restless. I'm reminded of the Buffalo Springfield song (is that dating me?) - "There's something happening out there, what it is aint exactly clear."

UPDATE: as if on cue, Instapundit - "These things are happening all over, under the media radar."

ObamaCare Outrage #16: Forcing old people to discuss suicide

Democrats want you old people to die with dignity, putting euthanasia policies into ObamaCare:

The section, titled “Advanced Care Planning Consultation” requires senior citizens to meet at least every 5 years with a doctor or nurse practitioner to discuss dying with dignity.

The section requires that they talk to their doctor, not a lawyer, about living wills, durable healthcare powers of attorney, hospice, etc. Given the progressive intelligentsia already being on the record in favor of euthanizing the elderly, it is no small leap to see where the Democrats are headed with this.

Legally forcing senior citizens to have “death with dignity schedules every few years is just another way to say the government wants to make sure seniors know it is time to commit suicide to save the system money.

They are FORCING old people to have discussions about dying. Death with dignity is code for assisted suicide. This is their 'healthcare savings' for ya: "Hey, Granny, take a hint, it's time to stop using up all that healthcare. Just die already."

Monday, July 20, 2009

ObamaCare Outrage #15: Taxpayer funded healthcare for illegal aliens

12 million illegal aliens covered by ObamaCare:

On Friday, Democrats moved one step closer to giving free health insurance to the nation’s estimated 12 million illegal aliens when they successfully defeated a Republican-backed amendment, offered by Rep. Dean Heller, R-Nev., that would have prevented illegal aliens from receiving government-subsidized health care under the proposed plan backed by House Democrats and President Barack Obama.

The House Ways and Means Committee nixed the Heller amendment by a 26-to-15 vote along straight party lines, and followed this action by passing the 1,018-page bill early Friday morning by a 23-to-18 margin, with three Democrats voting against the plan.

he Democratic plan will embrace Obama’s vision of bringing free government medical care to more than 45 million uninsured people in America – a significant portion of whom are illegal aliens.

According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, costs under the Obama plan being proposed by the House will saddle citizens with $1.04 trillion in new federal outlays over the next decade.

The ObamaCare bill's costs skyrocket in part because of the coverage of these millions of illegal aliens.

ObamaCare Outrage #14: 83 million Americans will lose private health insurance

American Spectator reports on Heritage analysis of Democrat House bill:

Democrats and President Obama have denied that the creation of a new government-run health care plan would be a Trojan Horse for single-payer health care, but a new report by the Lewin Group (comissioned by the Heritage Foundation) finds that the House Democrats' health care bill would shift more 83.4 million Americans from private health care coverage to the government plan. To put that in perspective, that would mean that nearly half (48.4 percent) would lose their private health coverage. In all, the government plan would have 103.4 million members once implemented, according to the Lewin analysis. President Obama has repeated the mantra that anybody who likes their health insurance plan can keep it, but in reality about 63 percent of covered Americans get their health care through their employers, and if employers decide to drop their current health plans in favor of the government plan, workers won't have any choice but to sign up.
The ObamaCare bill is a bill that with subsidies, regulations, cost-shifting and taxes, will force most Americans into the Government-run health insurance system.

The more you look at the bill, the worse it looks.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Obamacare Outrage #13: Replacing doctors with bureaucrats

Obama says “there will be a panel of experts to determine what procedure is best...”.

They used to call these experts ... doctors. Obama is replacing doctors with bureaucrats in making healthcare decisions. Sigh.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Predictions for 2010

I usually don't make predictions, but here are some fearless predictions:

1. The observation that Gov Perry has 13,000 twitter followers while Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison is not even on twitter is one of many reasons to think Governor Perry will be a survivor. He's fighting like one. KBH is fighting like its still 1993. Big mistake. Governor Rick Perry will defeat KBH in the Republican primary.

2. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison will see the writing on the wall by December so she will NOT decide to vacate her senate seat, but play it safe. Lose the primary means she will ride it out until 2012, and no Senate race after all and a more boring 2010 election cycle. Dewhurst and Abbott will stay put. The Republicans will have an incumbent slate and sweep the board at the Texas state level, enjoying a bounce from 2008 as the Democrats nationally take a beating with voter Obama fatigue.

UPDATE: 8/1/09 - Crystal ball already broken on this item. KBH has announced she will vacate her US Senate seat later this year.

3. The tax-and-spend-and-regulate liberal Democrats can't help it. Doing the same thing they did in 1993-1994 and 1965-1966, they raised taxes, added huge new spending programs, and forced onerous regulations. Obama's poll ratings will be in low 40s by mid 2010. Unemployment will stay above 9% through mid 2010. Bad news for Democrats.

4. Nationally, the Republicans will make big gains in House seats, winning back over 30 seats, but missing the goal of deposing Pelosi as speaker. Likewise in the US Senate, strong gains, including Harry Reid losing his re-election, but not enough for a Republican majority. One of the defeated incumbents will be liberal Democrat Congressman Chet Edwards, finally washed out by his conservative constituents in a tide of rejection of the left-liberal Pelosi Congress. Senator Ogden will defeat him, and Dan Gattis will be a new State Senator replacing Ogden.

5. Kirk Watson will run for statewide office. The smart choice for a post is Lt Governor, where the power is. It will set off a race locally, 3-way for the SD-14 slot - Strama, Naishtat, Rodriguez. Local Dems know Naishtat is "furniture" but Rodriguez is light on fundraising, so will bow out of contention and up-and-comer Mark Strama will get the nod.

6. Local Democrats will take the Travis County Republicans for granted. To their chagrin.

7. There will be major corruption scandals in the Democrat party at the national level. The news media will cover it up. (Wait, that's not a prediction; that happens on a regular basis.)

Expect the unexpected. Some variation of the above will or will not happen.

Texas vs Cali on welfare burden

Another California versus Texas comparison. via Chuck Devore: Cali has 12% of US population but 33% of the welfare rolls. Texas has one-tenth the welfare burden even though its population is 2/3rds of California's:

About Cronkite

The passing of iconic TV journalist Walter Cronkite, who died at aged 92 this week, has led to mythical claims of his objectivity from the same media that violates standards of objective journalism daily. Some thoughts on his influence on TV journalism led me to comment on his status and changes in the media:

Cronkite was respected in part because there was no reference point or alternative views to observe or contrast his bias. One major problem with the liberal media bias of the Cronkite era you mention was their blindness to their own subjectivity and the myth-creation of an ‘objective media’, when in fact it was anything but. They could get away with it because the liberal media had a virtual monopoly on national inside-the-beltway news for many decades.

Yet through a historical lens, we can review how for example CBS / 60 minutes went after General Westmoreland, Cronkite’s famous declaration that Tet was a defeat for the US (a dubious claim now we know that it decimated the VietCong), etc.

Now that we live in a world of a plethora of news and opinion sources, anyone can triangulate where any particular news source is, in terms of their reliability, objectivity, and bias. If you have any questions, you can always go to or other media ‘watchdog’ places to see what critics have to say about it.

Protests Against Obamacare, Nationwide and in Dallas

nationwide protests against ObamaCare at dozens of Congressional offices across the nation. Here is a report on one of those protests, in Dallas, organized by Dallas Tea Party activists:

Thanks to each and every one of you who showed up today to STAND UP FOR LIBERTY and AGAINST Government-run health care.


By this morning, we had 367 RSVPs for the demonstration.

By 11:00 am, a crowd had already assembled, and the crowd only grew from there. By 12:00 noon, the Tea Party Patriots were OUT IN FORCE and we made our voices heard.

There's no way to know for certain how many folks ultimately showed up, but it was pretty clear we had HUNDREDS there, and Dallas Police confirmed that.


We had several local TV news outlets there, so we suspect we may have made it onto the local news.

Addendum: The liberal media is spinning the setbacks for President Obama, but in fact the majority of Americans oppose the Democrats' ObamaCare bill, disliking the tax hikes, the spending hikes and the restrictions on healthcare choice. Tea Parties are a key part of the resistance movement, for example Tea party Patriots are focussing on ObamaCare as their #1 activism target. The Democrats meanwhile are engaged in a mad and mindless rush to pass some huge, monstrous regulation FAST, before the measure wilts under the heat of scrutiny by the people. That is a nutty and dangerous way to legislate, sure to lead to bad policy. America will be the winner if this mad rush gets derailed, and we'll have Tea Partiers to thank for that.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Obamacare Outrage #12: Higher Tax rates than Sweden and France

Democrats in the House pass a $500 billion tax increase.

We will be seeing people fleeing from the high-tax USA to capitalist havens like Sweden and France.

Obamacare Outrage #11: Taxpayer Funded Abortions

How Senator Mikulski Slipped an Abortion Mandate into the Health Care Bill , and was outed on her actions by Senator Hatch:

To eliminate any ambiguity that Mikulski’s amendment was intended to mandate abortion coverage in the proposed health-care reform, Hatch asked her a final question.

“Madame Chairman, would you be willing to put some language in that says, ‘Not including abortion services’?” Hatch asked. “Then I think you would have more support.”

Mikulski concluded with a convoluted response, saying, “So, no, I would not be willing to do that at this time.” Mikulski’s amendment passed.

On Monday, Hatch offered his own amendment in the committee to prohibit any funding of abortion through federally funded health insurance programs except in cases of rape, incest or to save the life of the mother. The amendment was defeated.
Taxpayer-funded abortions is now in the Senate ObamaCare bill.

Quote of the Day: Sam Houston

“The great misfortune is that a notion obtains with those in power that the world,or the people,require more governing than is necessary. To govern well is a great science but no country is ever improved by too much governing…most men think when they are elevated to position, that it requires an effort to discharge their duties, and they leave common sense out of the question” - Sam Houston, Texas President & Texas Governor

More from Sam Houston:
“Texas has yet to learn submission to any oppression, come from what source it may.”

“I would give no thought of what the world might say of me, if I could only transmit to posterity the reputation of an honest man.”

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Ten Ways Obamacare Will Kill You

The Obamacare bills in Congress are a clear and present danger to the life, liberty and prosperity of Americans. That's why I call the Waxman House bill the "Destroy American Freedom Act" and urge everyone to learn about how horrible these bills are. The healthcare 'reform' engine is based on myths like the myth of 46 million uninsured, but the lies are getting exposed and the Mask is off with this Rube Goldberg bureaucratic monstrosity. These ObamaCare bills could one day literally kill people.

Here are Ten Ways Obamacare will kill things we hold dear:

1. It kills jobs: It contains small business mandates and higher taxes, including an 8% payroll tax on businesses that don't offer health insurance, that will make businesses shed jobs and crush a weak employment situation.Previous health care tax hikes have already killed jobs and this will be even worse.
2. It kills choice: choice of employers, employees, self-employed, health providers, hospitals, all will have their choices reduced and eliminated by the bureaucratic morass created by the Federal program. Malkin calls it "The Death of Choice."
3. It kills innovation.
4. It literally kills via inevitable rationing, which has caused suffering in other 'single-payer' countries and which Obama has chillingly justified. See "Health rations and you" for a satiric glimpse of the future.
5. It kills productive Americans through higher taxes, pushing top effective tax rates well above 50% in some states, and taxing those who dare to go without expensive mandated health insurance. Is the solution to the uninsured to tax 8 million Americans without health insurance? Even the Washington Post is skeptical of these massive tax hikes.
6. It kills fiscal responsibility: With $1 trillion over ten years and a true cost of $4 trillion, Obamacare ramps up a new $200 billion/year entitlement program that hurtles the Federal Government ever faster to bankruptcy. Claims that it would save long-term health costs are refuted by CBO; it saves no money but adds costs to the Government.
7. It will kill state Government budgets by forcing higher Medicaid costs on states; it "would hijack Texas’ state budget as part of its government takeover of our health care system" to the tune of $4 billion a year in Texas alone.
8. Kills private sector insurance: The Govt-run health insurance scheme will lead to destruction of private health insurance as the rules and subsidies make it impossible for private health insurance to function in true market-oriented way. It will destroy private health insurance and lead to single-payer.
9. It kills quality care by doctors, bureaucratizing the entire system and cutting quality to cut costs.
10. It kills our freedom: It forbids individual private health insurance outside 'exchanges' that are set up to reduce choice in health insurance by channelling people into public care (see #8) - "Individual health insurance coverage that is not grandfathered health insurance coverage under subsection (a) may only be offered on or after the first day of Y1 as an Exchange-participating health benefits plan"; it punishes opting out of health insurance; it outlaws health insurance that doesnt meet burdensome Federal guidelines.

This bill outlaws giving someone a job and only paying a wage for that job. As stated here: “If the government purports to deprive me of my right to contract with a doctor to provide me or my family with healthcare at a price I am freely willing to pay and the doctor is freely willing to accept, that is an act of tyranny warranting open rebellion.”

Ultimately, this bill will kill the health industry as we know it, sending America
in a direction where we have fewer rights and choices than even people in socialized
healthcare countries. Not that the status quo is great, as both the current system and more government intervention suffer from the same lack of market fundamentals: Little direct-pay natural price controls, barriers to competition, high litigation and regulation costs, massive cost-shifting, excessive system complexity, and not enough consumer responsible and choice. There is an alternative to this nightmare: Put consumers back in control and in responsibility for health care spending.

Stopping this bill may be the last chance we get at having a choice over our healthcare.

Obamacare: The Destroy American Freedom Act

Another Waxman monstrosity has been produced, where Waxman, the jackboot leftist Congress-critter from Cali, has managed to make a bad idea even worse. If you love freedom, you will hate this bill.

There are so many awful provisions - tax hikes, mandates, rules, robbing states to pay for this bill, put the squeeze on old people - that I can highlight just one:
This bill will make individual health insurance illegal. via Redstate, there is IBD:

It turns out we were right: The provision would indeed outlaw individual private coverage. Under the Orwellian header of “Protecting The Choice To Keep Current Coverage,” the “Limitation On New Enrollment” section of the bill clearly states:

“Except as provided in this paragraph, the individual health insurance issuer offering such coverage does not enroll any individual in such coverage if the first effective date of coverage is on or after the first day” of the year the legislation becomes law.

So we can all keep our coverage, just as promised — with, of course, exceptions: Those who currently have private individual coverage won’t be able to change it. Nor will those who leave a company to work for themselves be free to buy individual plans from private carriers.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Sotomayor fallout: Living Constitution is (publicly) dead

Deconstructionism takes a hit in the Sotomayor hearings:

First, Sotomayor embraced legal formalism and rejected legal realism, critical race theory, and the host of other academic deconstructionist fashions of the past eighty-odd years. (For my thoughts on how those movements themselves act as the driver behind the judicial confirmation mess, see my column in today’s Examiner.) It’s hardly surprising that Mike Seidman reacted as strongly as he did to Sotomayor’s testimony: we have a Democratic Supreme Court nominee openly rejecting as illegitimate the major academic movement to which Seidman has devoted his life. Sotomayor explicitly repudiated the “empathy” standard of judging articulated by the president who nominated her, and completely retreated from her own past race- and gender-conscious statements about the law.

Author says it "represents a major victory for conservatism. ... It’s hard for me to see why Sotomayor’s statements couldn’t be used pretty powerfully to undercut the legitimacy of a full-blown transnationalist like Harold Koh, or anyone firmly rooted in the Critical Legal Studies school." The "living Constitution" guff has been killed off in the public realm. One of the benefits of GOP backbone - it creates the need for Liberal hypocrisy, to deflect from that fact that most people disagree with the Liberal position on things.

ObamaCare taxing and spending

AmSpec's Phillip Klien has this chart on ObamaCare, a new $200 billion/ year entitlement spending program:

How its paid for:

Revenue-raisers include: $544 billion from a new income tax surcharge on single people making $280,000 a year and households making $350,000 and above; $37 billion in other tax adjustments. About $500 billion in cuts to Medicare and Medicaid. About $200 billion from penalties paid by individuals and employers who don't obtain coverage.

Wall Street Journal on the cost: The Democrats will hit an 8% payroll tax on business if they dont follow Govt mandate, that's any business with a payroll above $250,000; and another $500 billion income tax increase, rich will pay income tax rates not seen since Jimmy Carter days (and that went *so* well); and they tax individuals who dare to go health insurance free, e.g., if you are self-employed and make about $60,000 and don't have Govt approved health insurance, you get taxed. And they are going to carve out 'savings' from Medicare and Medicaid by screwing the doctors and patients in those systems.

Then they add mandates and complexity that will eventually destroy our private health insurance options, the ultimate end-goal for the liberals is a 'single-payer' fully socialized medicine system, 100% govt, 0% private. Turns out most of the uninsured are doing so out of choice, and only about 8 million of the uninsured really need assistance that is unavailable from existing extensive Govt programs.

So to help 8 million, the healthcare system is going to be nationalized and screwed up beyond all recognition for the 90% rest of us. This bill is a nightmare and a clear and present danger to our jobs and the economy.

Democrat's latest Job-killing idea - tax small business

Democrats want an 8% payroll tax hike on businesses that don't provide health insurance. They also are forcing a $500 billion tax hike. Another bill that is doing the wrong thing at the worst time to do these things. If you are going to knee-cap the economy, it's really a bad idea to do it when unemployment is heading to double digits.

"House Democrats on Tuesday unveiled sweeping health-care legislation that would hit all but the smallest businesses with a penalty equal to 8% of payroll if they fail to provide health insurance to workers."

... "This bill costs too much, it covers too few and it has way too much government involvement," said Michelle Dimarob, a lobbyist with the National Federation of Independent Business, the main trade group for small firms. "Small business doesn't want any of those things."

Obama claims that this fixes what is wrong with health care... So what's wrong with healthcare is that we don't have high enough taxes, enough Government mandates and meddling and more bureaucracy?


One way to get out of political hot water: Lie about what you said. Judge Sotomayor has thrown liberal judicial activism 'under the bus' as a way to deflect criticisms from Republicans over her very questionable rulings, like Ricci case, and statements ("wise Latina") and associations with radical groups that expose her biases.

Republicans like Sen Jeff Sessions are saying: "Blind, equal justice is the foundation of our remarkable legal system and the bulwark of our shared freedoms." Judge Sotomayor could have challenged that forthrightly. Even though the polling shows Americans don't want liberal activist Judges, there are 60 Democrat votes in the Senate to confirm a fothright liberal activist. Instead, Sotomayor fled from the 'empathy' standard, choosing political expediency over honesty. Instead, we get a different Sotomayor on the role of Judges today than in her past:

JUDGE SONIA SOTOMAYOR: “We don’t make policy choices in the court. We look at the case before us with the interests that are argued by the parties, look at our precedent, and try to apply its principles to the arguments parties are raising.”

JUDGE SONIA SOTOMAYOR: “All of the legal defense funds out there. They are looking for people with Court of Appeals experience. Because it is -- Court of Appeals is where policy is made. And I know, I know this is on tape. And I should never say that because we don't make law, I know. [Laughter]. I'm not promoting it. And I'm not advocating it, you know. OK. [Laughter].” (Judge Sonia Sotomayor, Remarks At Duke University Law School, 2/25/05)

No wonder some commentators are quipping "Soto-liar". While I wouldn't advise comments like Judge Ginsburg's comments that Roe v Wade was about reducing population, something better than "my words failed" and direct contradictions with previous statements would help.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Taxes Taxes Taxes

We live in a new era where governmental organizations at all levels are encroaching ever more aggressively for the capital and time of the private sector in order to fund their programs.

A few personal examples:

  • My recent T-Mobile bill included a note about a 40 percent increase in a Regulatory Programs Fee that it passes to its customers, that will cost me $12 more per year per line. I have three lines on my account, so that adds up to $43.56.

T-Mobile says its a 'fee we collect and retain to help us recover the costs associated with funding and complying with a variety of government mandates, programs and obligations, such as enhanced 911 programs, number portability, and governmental requirements concerning the construction and operation of our network.'

I also pay another $15.67 in taxes against $120 in T-Mobile charges on my monthly bill. So, my total mobile phone taxes are $19.30 or roughly 10 percent now.

  • Now, on to the state of Louisiana. I employ one person on a part time basis in Louisiana. My first payroll for her was in October 2008, the fourth quarter of 2008.

I've already had to deal with two errant money grabs from the Louisiana Workforce Commission. First they sent me a bill saying I owed $250 for unemployment insurance for the third quarter of 2008. The problem was that I did not have an employee payroll in the third quarter. I had to take time out of my business life to contact my payroll processor and ask about this problem and then after researching it on their end they advised me to call the Workforce Commission and tell them that their billing was in error. I called and the Workforce Commission acknowledged their error and reversed it. But the question is whether they just assumed I had not paid the third quarter installment and billed me so as to get the money. What if I'd paid the money? Would I have gotten it back once the mistake was discovered? Or was this an attempt to get me to pay it in hope that I'd just look over their mistake and assume it was right?

Then a few weeks later I receive another correspondence from the Louisiana Workforce Commission telling me I needed to start paying benefits for a person who I supposedly had laid off. Problem was that I'd never had that person in my employ. So again, calls were made to the LWC and faxes sent and hopefully the problem has been resolved. We'll see. All the while, I'm out about 4 hours in terms of lost productivity in taking care of these issues.

My point here is simply that all levels of government are going to be actively scrounging for tax revenues in any way they can get it because the are seeing huge shortfalls in their normal revenue generation operations. Keep an eye on them and protest at every possible turn. It will keep them tied up from doing more damage.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Demographics of the uninsured

Going Galt on Obamacare reminds us of a statistic on who the health-uninsured are:

"Of the almost 46 million Americans counted as uninsured by the U.S. Census Bureau, 14 million of them are eligible for existing government programs but have not signed up. Another 17 million of them are earning over $50,000 a year but do not buy insurance because they feel it is too expensive. Two-thirds are young people between 18 and 31 who consider themselves “invincible.” They would buy insurance if it were cheaper and available to cover catastrophes, which is why one has insurance. Because 64 percent of Americans get their insurance through their employer and insurance is not portable, many of the uninsured are just between jobs and hence counted as uninsured, even if they are only uninsured for a short period of time. There are only about 8 million uninsured that need some assistance."

Rubio Beats Crist

Don't be on Crist over Rubio. Crist's support for the stimulus is a bad bad call that will be fatal, and Rubio beats Crist and wins the 2010 election both.

Sotomayor and the forgotten Constitution

The nomination of Judge Sotomayor now moves to the Senate, where the Kabuki dance of the confirmation hearings is taking place this week. Senators make speeches with questions marks at the end, and the show-prepped self-described "wise Latina" will respond by saying as much nothing as possible.

Let me remind the good Senators on both sides what this confirmation should be about: The Constitution. Senators, Presidents, and Supreme Court Justices all take an oath of office to uphold the Constitution. To uphold the Constitution must have some real significance, or it would not be core part of the oath of office. In monarchies and despotisms, fealty was to the King or leader, but in our Constitutional Republic, we expect fealty from public servants to the laws and the Constitution?

What should 'uphold the Constitution' mean to the Judges? Like a gothic arch that is architected to make the free space of a cathedral, the architecture of our Republican form of government and legal system is the structure to support our freed and civil society. It consists of a division of powers between branches of Government; it includes the concept of limited Government - that Government only has powers granted by the people to it; it includes Federalism, and our Bill of Rights. The foundation that underpins our political order and civil society is the concept that we are ruled as a nation of laws, not men. Presidents must execute the laws, and not merely what they wish; Judges must be bound to interpret the law as it is written, not as they would wish it. It is left to political bodies to make the laws. The Rule of Law and the Constitution can only be upheld if it has substance and a grounded certainty, and if Judges themselves share this understanding of the architecture of our Republic and abide by this Constitutional and legal scheme.

This is all good civics, but how does Obama's nomination play into this? The fact that it doesn't is the point. The Sotomayor nomination was partly an ideological pick ("empathy" as a code word for liberal judicial activist) and partly an identity politics pick (Obama had no white males in his 'shortlist' and wanted a minority on SCOTUS). Where in Obama's nomination was consideration given to the question: Does she adhere to the laws and the Constitution as they are written? Does she faithfully interpret the laws, without injecting personal bias or consideration?

We sadly know the answer. President Obama has made it his intent to only nominate Judges whose view of their role is inherently corrupted, defective and wrong. Sotomayor wants Judges to change laws not just interpret them. Sotomayor reached an unwise and unwarranted decision in Ricci, that the Supreme Court overruled. Here ruling was Prejudiced. She doesn't recognize Second Amendment Rights that are clearly written in the Consitution, and likewise appears hostile to freedom of political speech in campaigns.

In fact, Obama's fatal flaw is that he was and is specifically seeking out, via his 'empathy' standard, Judges who would bend the law to reach the 'right' conclusion. This view of the law has corrupted the bench, put courts on the path towards judicial activist overreach and even tyranny, and undermined the rule of law. It has also, in this era of "Borking", led to politicization of the judicial nomination process. The true primary role of Judges has been relegated by liberals who reject this view of the Judge's proper role, to an "ism" - "Originalism" and "judicial conservatism", and even the perverse view of calling it 'activism' if someone who upholds a traditional view of judges as interpreters of the laws tries to overturn bad judicial rulings not based on it.

Basic civics-level understanding of what Judges should and should not do is being ignored. Liberals since the time when FDR attempted to pack the Supreme Court in an act of political bullying, have seen the courts in a dangerous and new light - as an avenue for political advancement. In the hands of groups like the ACLU and gay activists, courts have made political decisions that elected bodies were unwilling to make; those actions invariably have coarsened politics and deprive Americans of both liberty and democratic choice.

The classic example of such Judicial activist overreach has been Roe v Wade, which used oxymoronic construct of 'substantive due process', misread the 14th amendment and Constitution, denied rights to unborn, and cast a shadow on abortion policy for a generation by trumping democratic local and state choice on matter. It's a decision so obviously wrongly reasoned that even legal expert liberals like Alan Dershowitz acknowledge the decision was flawed.

The Judges serve a role as watchdogs of the law and of due process. When Judges are asked to do two things, their primary mission suffers. A Judge cannot serve an ephemeral "empathy" standard that is code for liberal social policy and serve the law through interpretation at the same time. This is akin to asking the Federal reserve to keep sound money and low unemployment; juicing money to goose employment ends up watering down the value of money. Just as President Obama's economic policies that ask the Federal reserve to do too much are a threat to the soundness of the U.S. dollar, so too his approach to judicial nominations will lead to Judges who undermine the rule of law and the Constitution.

The currency of the Rule of Law weakens when Judges are asked to do too much. While Senator Cornyn asks many great questions, the one question that needs to be answered is: "Judges take an oath to uphold the laws and the Constitution. Will you keep your oath, above and beyond all other considerations, as your sole, primary, and unwavering objective?"

Sunday, July 12, 2009

What Obama Doesn't Say

Ouch: "In President Obama’s op-ed on the topic of the economy, here are some words you won’t find: profits, investment, incentives, taxes, risk, enterprise or markets. Or freedom, or liberty."

5 Steps to Better Healthcare

Max Borders of NextRight nails it with 5 steps to better healthcare policy. A summary:

1. Let people buy health insurance across state lines. I live in North Carolina. If folks in my state could buy insurance in Idaho, we would cut our premium almost in half.

2. Give poor and working class people tax credits (vouchers) to buy insurance. It’s not hard. Help the poor. Keep the competitive market, too.

3. De-couple health insurance from our jobs. Change the tax code.

4. Give greater access to health savings accounts for use on the small stuff.

5. Stop driving up costs with regs and mandates.

Democrats Socialized Medi-Tax Increase Bill

Good news: Health Care Bill 'Delayed Indefinitely'. Maybe they are getting these kind of calls: Stop screwing up healthcare and fix the economy, dammit."

Then we hear Rep Rangel touts tax increase to pay for socialized medicine, with a rollout of this tax-and-spend plan on Monday.

Perry Appoints Gail Lowe to chair SBOE

Gov Perry appoints Gail Lowe as SBOE chair.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Obama's Mission Accomplished Moment

Obama gave his Radio Address on the stimulus, and Hot Air debunks the multiple lies in it. Obama said his $787 billion stimulus bill “has worked as intended.” From Roger Simon:

Cantor recently said the stimulus bill was “full of pork- barrel spending, government waste and massive borrowing cleverly called ‘stimulus.’ The plain truth is that President Obama’s economic decisions have not produced jobs, have not produced prosperity, and have not worked.”

One look around us and it’s hard to deny that. The stock market these days would seem to be agreeing with Cantor too. Meanwhile, Obama is now trying to reassure us by insisting his $787 billion stimulus bill “has worked as intended.”

Obama's "I wouldn't do anything differently" are EXACTLY the kinds of hubristic statements that got Bush into trouble in Iraq. It may be early to predict, but I think saying the stimulus "has worked as intended" at a time of 9.5% unemployment is a 'mission accomplished' moment for Obama. Actually, that would be unfair to Bush, since there was some accomplishment to tout (toppling Saddam), whereas here, there is zero evidence of economic progress since February - at best, the economic deceleration has slowed (but not even stopped). President Delusion as "Stop the ACLU" calls it. RNC made an ad "Nothing" mocking Obama's "there's nothing we'd do differently" statement.

The numbers are in - Government intervention has not helped the economy:

In response to bad news like this, the Obama administration is moving the goalposts, changing the definition of success.

The bad June jobs report coincided with a fall in Obama's popularity. Now that people are beginning to get it - "huh, the stimulus didn't work", will they connect the dots and realize that Obama's entire domestic agenda - cap-and-trade, socialized healthcare, trillion-dollar deficits - is a dagger pointed at American prosperity? They are beginning to notice that Washington is going the wrong way.

Pundit and Pundette have the same reaction.

Lesson: Latin Studies Endangers Kids

Latin American Prof abandons kids at a mall ...

Bridget Kevane, a professor of Latin American and Latino literature at Montana State University, drove her three kids and two of their friends -- two 12-year-old girls, and three younger kids, age 8, 7 and 3 -- to a mall near their home in Bozeman. She put the 12-year-olds in charge, and told them not to leave the younger kids alone. She ordered that the 3-year-old remain in her stroller. She told them to call her on their cell phone if they needed her.

And then she drove home for some rest.

... and the story becomes bizarre grist for a woman defending elitists. It's bizarre that this story was used by a feminist to launch an anti-Palin tirade (what/!?)

Real Lesson: Latin Studies Profs Endanger Kids.

The Conscious Universe

Via Rick Moran a quote about the universe:

By the late sixties, it had become clear that if the Big Bang had been just one part in a million more powerful, the cosmos would have blown outward too fast to allow stars and worlds to form. Result: no us. Even more coincidentally, the universe’s four forces and all of its constants are just perfectly set up for atomic interactions, the existence of atoms and elements, planets, liquid water, and life. Tweak any of them and you never existed.

You read this and the instant reaction is "What are the odds?" or ... "Thank God!"

It's almost as if an Intelligent Designer figured it out to work out elegantly. Just in time to ponder for Sunday.

California versus Texas

California versus Texas.

Not that Californian government comes cheap: it has the second-highest top level of state income tax in America (after Hawaii, of all places). Indeed, high taxes, coupled with intrusive regulation of business and greenery taken to silly extremes, have gradually strangled what was once America’s most dynamic state economy. Chief Executive magazine, to take just one example, has ranked California the very worst state to do business in for each of the past four years.

By contrast, Texas was the best state in that poll. It has coped well with the recession, with an unemployment rate two points below the national average and one of the lowest rates of housing repossession. In part this is because Texan banks, hard hit in the last property bust, did not overexpand this time. But as our special report this week explains, Texas also clearly offers a different model, based on small government. It has no state capital-gains or income tax, and a business-friendly and immigrant-tolerant attitude. It is home to more Fortune 500 companies than any other state—64 compared with California’s 51 and New York’s 56.

Except for the stupid "lack of culture" crack, probably due to some Euro-centric snobbery, the article makes a good case for Texas leading the nation forward.

I'm a Texan By Choice, got here as fast as I could. Texas doesn't have a state income tax, an over-bearing state government, and the people believe in individualism and strong values. This 'culture' is what makes it a good place to make a living and raise a family.

California had its golden age in the post World War II era right through the internet bubble. But California is not what it once was. I once had a job opportunity to move to California, about 10 years ago, but I took a pass at it. I couldn't bear to leave the Texas I had come to love, and California was just a place with traffic jams and high taxes. Maybe with 11.5% unemployment, the traffic is less, but the taxes are still killing the state. It's not too late for Cali to learn from Texas and recapture it's former glory, but it will take a major turnaround.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

At least we are not New York

Albany, I give up.

Second Stimulus?

Having a trillion dollar boondoggle spending plan and calling it 'stimulus' is like hitting your head with a hammer and calling it an aspirin. A second stimulus is like hitting yourself in the head with a hammer a second time because the first time really hurt.

The first stimulus has not helped the economy, and Obama is in a tough position and he is losing popularity.

President Obama, the "more cowbell" of American Liberalism, is adopting the Liberal strategy of taking EVERY liberal idea on at once without a care for the cost or whether it works. Cook the books to get the dreck passed, then plead ignorance when it goes awry with the lame "it's worse than we forecasted" (no, you are MAKING it worse!), and move the goalposts. And as the economy circles the drain, tax-and-spend-and-regulate yet more. It's mindless, dumb liberal-lemming-ism. Is there any other?

The calls for another stimulus are an implicit acknowledgement of the failures of President Obama and the Democrats on the first stimulus - It Isn't Working. So the Democrats will have a hard time convincing themselves a second stimulus is a good idea. But the problem is that it isn't working because Big Govt Spending never was and never is real stimulus. At best, it shifts some activity around, in the margins. At worst, it fritters away wealth into useless 'economic activity' that helps statistics but doesnt create long-term economic growth. A dozen 'stimulus' bills would fail as badly.

At least the people oppose a second stimulus and are wary of Democratic agenda items: "The $787 billion stimulus package, the cap-and-trade bill's utility rate increases, the public health insurance package -- all these seem to generate more apprehension than enthusiasm. So does the prospect of doubling the national debt, as the Congressional Budget Office estimates, from about 40 percent of gross domestic product to about 80 percent." They are smartening up enough to see through the charade.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Obama Lied, Jobs Died

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: “So, there’s nothing that we would have done differently.” (ABC’s “Good Morning America,” 7/7/09)

Administration Predicted The Unemployment Rate Would Not Go Above 8 Percent If The Stimulus Passed

“Just 10 Days Before Taking Office, Obama’s Top Economic Advisers Released A Report Predicting Unemployment Would Remain At 8 Percent Or Below Through This Year If An Economic Stimulus Plan Won Congressional Approval.” (“Biden Says ‘Everyone Guessed Wrong’ On Jobs Number,” The Associated Press, 6/14/09)

“The Unemployment Rate Rose In June To 9.5 Percent, Making It The Worst In 26 Years.” (“Unemployment Reaches 9.5 Percent, Highest In 26 Years,” U.S. News & World Report, 7/2/09)

The Administration Predicted The Stimulus Would Create Up To 4 Million Jobs
LARRY SUMMERS, Director Of The National Economic Council: “Yeah, The Plan Will Create 3 Million To 4 Million Jobs.” “Yeah, the plan will create 3 million to 4 million jobs more than the economy otherwise would have had, and that's before you get to the financial recovery approach.” (NBC’s “Meet The Press,” 1/25/09)

3,382,000 Jobs Have Been Lost So Far In 2009. (U.S. Dept. Of Labor, “Employment, Hour, And Earnings >From The Current Employment Statistics Survey (National),” Accessed 7/6/09)

The Administration Promised “Unprecedented Responsibility” In Stimulus Spending
PRESIDENT OBAMA: “Now, what is required in return, what I will need from all of you, is unprecedented responsibility and accountability -- on all of our parts. The American people are watching. They need this plan to work. They expect to see the money that they've earned, that they've worked so hard to earn, spent in its intended purposes, without waste, without inefficiency, without fraud.” (President Obama, Remarks, Washington, D.C., 2/20/09)

VICE PRESIDENT BIDEN: “We Know Some Of This Money Is Going To Be Wasted … Some People Are Being Scammed Already.” “‘We know some of this money is going to be wasted,’ Biden said during a roundtable discussion in New York with business leaders aimed at promoting the two-year stimulus plan. … ‘There are going to be mistakes made,’ said Biden. ‘Some people are being scammed already.’” (“Biden Says Some Waste Inevitable Part Of Stimulus,” Reuters, 6/2/09)

The Administration Urged Massive Spending “Immediately” To Avoid “Catastrophe”

PRESIDENT OBAMA: “If We Do Not Move Swiftly To Sign The American Recovery And Reinvestment Act Into Law, An Economy That Is Already In Crisis Will Be Faced With Catastrophe. … Millions More Americans Will Lose Their Jobs. Homes will be lost. Families will go without health care. Our crippling dependence on foreign oil will continue. That is the price of inaction.” (President Obama, Remarks To House Democratic Caucus, 2/5/09)

· OBAMA: “And Economists Across The Spectrum Have Warned, If We Don't Act Immediately, Then Millions More Jobs Will Disappear, The National Unemployment Rates Will Approach Double Digits, more people will lose their homes and their health care, and our nation will sink into a crisis that at some point is going to be that much tougher to reverse.” (President Obama, Town Hall Meeting, Fort Myers, FL, 2/10/09)
REP. JIM COOPER (D-TN): Dem Congressman Calls Rushed Process “An Abomination” Saying “We Didn’t Have Enough Time To Read It And Go Through It.” “‘It was an abomination, the procedure that they used to rush it through right before the President's Day recess,’ Cooper told engineers gathered at the American Council of Engineering Companies of Tennessee luncheon, according to multiple reports. ‘I still didn't like the fact that we didn't have enough time to read it and go through it.’” (“Cooper Calls Rushed Stimulus Vote ‘An Abomination,” The Hill's "Briefing Room" Blog, 02/17/09)

We now have lost about 4 million jobs since Obama was elected, and we now have a blown budget, the prospect of more job-killing bills on the horizon and a tepid recovery at best. Obama Lied, Jobs Died.

Texas Mugging of Western Civ

How leftists and liberals conspired to undermine Western Civilization at UT. A long story, but well worth the read:

The College of Liberal Arts (CoLA) at the University of Texas has all of the problems that plague higher education in America, only more, bigger, and with a better football team. It forms its own self-contained and self-referential world of all varieties of leftist thought, with only the occasional intrusion of voices from the right side of the intellectual dial. ...

This is a case study of how leftists operate to destroy vestiges of conservative thought on campus. Academic bias is not a mere accident, but a result of the deliberate acts of hostility from leftwing sources to conservative ideas and people.

The Palin Rorshach Test

Palin is a genuine cultural phenom who has both die-hard fans and die-hard detractors, who in both cases, in a kind of Derangement syndrome, manage to rationalize their opinions of her actions through the prism of their view of her. The rationalization goes like this:
1. I like/dislike Palin.
2. Therefore everything she does is great/stinks.
3. Therefore her decision was good/bad.

As in "My candidate thinks outside the box... The other guy is erratic."
From this I conclude that her decision to resign as Governor of Alaska was neither helpful nor hurtful to whatever political ambitions she has. Interestingly, Gallup confirms my suspicion.

While many base voters are fine with Gov Palin's decision, I don't quite know what to make of Governor Palin's decision. I prefer elected officials to fill their terms than quit mid-term, but that's really an issue with the people of Alaska. The liberals will keep bringing up experience, conveniently forgetting how inexperienced Obama was (and is!) This decision may end up being the liberating start to a national campaign or the beginning of the end, and she needs to find herself a kitchen cabinet of trusted, smart advisors if she wants it to be the former not the latter.

Needed - The Braveheart Spirit

Rick Moran helped answer a question/dilemma I was faced with when looking at this data. It caused me to pen this reply:

Conservatives up, Republicans down 40% of Americans are conservative (good) yet 4 of 10 Republicans are unfavorable on their own party … wassup with that?
You’ve added the puzzle piece. As per #7, WE LACK LEADERSHIP. And what the leadership lacks is that “Braveheart” spirit - they are like those Scottish nobles trying to cut deals with the English King for their own hides, while the TEA-Partying rabble want someone who will FIGHT!

It’s not unhelpful to know where you stand, but it is pointless to bemoan it rather than change it. It’s not the snarling that we need, but the “Dont give up” DETERMINATION TO MAKE OUR VOICES MATTER. Because ultimately I give a damn about this country because I’ve got some kids who may just grow up into a pathetic backwater country because our first black President put us in hock to the Chinese in his quest to destroy coal power plants and private health insurance. We need a Churchillian response to Obama’s threats to our liberty and prosperity, not a Neville Chamberlain at Munich response. Fight on the cap-and-trade, fight on the budget, fight on ObamaCare, fight on Gitmo, fight on Sotomayor, fight them whereever they try to regulate, tax, spend, and undermine our American values, individualism and freedom.

It’s not so much 300 Yockey’s, but instead of waiting for the ‘next Reagan’ while clutching the martinis and muttering how all is lost, realize that we have among us 10,000 Reagans ready to take on the Obama-borg. We are the solution, the 40% of American that self-admits to being ‘conservative’ and the MAJORITY of Americans who want less Government not more. We have to fight to make our solutions a win or we’ll end up as precipitate, to coin a chemical analogy.

We need a virtue that conservatives of all people should not neglect. … as Dan Rather put it …. COURAGE! Cue the Braveheart theme, Bill Murray’s “Stripes” speech, or whatever it takes. Time to “Man Up” and head for the sound of political gunfire. Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!

Freedom is dying here in our land, our home. What will you do to defend your home and loved ones from the Tyranny that has come to these United States? Will you become their slave? Will you cower, fearfully in the shadows? Or will you stand. What will you do?

PS. It's normal for the party out of power to lack one unifying leader. That's fine, because what we need is not one Reagan, but 10,000 Reagans.

Monday, July 6, 2009

America is still conservative, Pt2

Americans moving ideologically right, showing that America is as conservative as it was in 2004.

In related news: Clinton pollster shows no movement towards socialized healthcare since 1994.

If America is so conservative, why does the GOP seem to be so hapless?

Friday, July 3, 2009

Texas Is Safe Again

Texas Lege Special Session has adjourned, having done the 'bare bones' things to keep agencies alive until 2011. And so we bid Farewell to the lege until 2011. Texas Is Safe Again.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Kudlow: June Jobs Tell a Bad Story

When Larry "Economic Sunshine" Kudlow says its bad ... we are looking at grim jobs numbers, another 467,000 jobs lost this month, near double-digit unemployment. The economy has bottomed perhaps, but shows little tendency to get up off the mat - the "L" shaped economy. The road to 4 million jobs is going in reverse, with 3 million jobs lost since inauguration day.

The Stimulus Bill has been a 'miserable failure':

TCR: Double Standard For Harris County Republican Office Holders GOP

TCR latest article: Double Standard For Harris County Republican Office Holders:

In the media it's déjà vu all over again with the 2010 elections coming soon, we now have an attempt to replay the themes of the 2008 election cycle. The Houston major media never misses an opportunity to rip Republicans, while Democrats operating similarly are left alone. The recent story of alleged voter registration irregularities continues and now an assistant to Tax-Assessor Collector Leo Vasquez is attacked because on his own time he sells voter lists, while at the same time one county-wide Democratic office holder employs a well known Democratic consultant, and another one has an experienced political operative on the payroll. So do we have a double standard? Seems so.
TCR Comment: What's the big deal? One thing's for sure, don't criticize one side and let the other off the hook.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The Problem with Health Care in One Picture

Drum Roll: The Problem With Health Care Is… Link

Consumers Turning Nose at Government Car Makers

Today's WSJ news -- that "The three biggest car makers in America called a bottom to the long decline in U.S. auto sales" based on June sales -- contains a nugget of information that may be interesting to watch in the future.

Namely, GM and Chrysler -- the two U.S. government and union owned automakers -- reported reeling sales.

GM said its sales fell 33% to 174,785 vehicles, Chrysler Group LLC's declined 42% to 68,297 and even Toyota's were down 32% at 131,654.

Ford, the only one of the Big Three Detroit auto makers that didn't require government bailout loans and stayed out of bankruptcy-court proceedings, reported its sales declined just 11%, to 154,873 cars and trucks. That total allowed Ford to outsell Toyota for the fourth straight month. thinks Americans already may be suspicious of the prospects for government owned autos. No warranties, poor workmanship, service desk run arounds (even more so than now). They don't want to own anything that the government and unions will have future control over. Who's going to trust government workmanship?

Indeed, rental car companies don't want any part of the GM/Chrysler vehicles:

The sharp declines at GM and Chrysler were caused in part by significantly lower sales to fleet customers such as rental-car companies. GM's fleet sales were down 49% and Chrysler's 95%.

We'll have to watch sales the next few months to see whether this is just a one-month market reaction or general skepticism.

Todd Herman and TechRepublican At PDF 2009

Personal Democracy Forum or PDF is a Forum about how the internet and social media impacts politics and vice versa. It bills itself as "the world's largest and best known conference on the intersection of technology and politics." They just held their 2009 forum.

Some TechRepublican blog posts on the forum: 5 Things I Learned at PDF from Joe Mansour, including how the Pickens Plan recruited 1.5 million volunteers in 8 months.Todd Herman (from RNC) discusses GOPs next steps in web development. "45 days" to relaunch on Which notes:

Despite the Dem’s recent success in using the internet, Republicans as a whole (68%) are actually more likely to be online political users then Dem’s (53%). 84% of Republicans go online and of that group 79% are online political users. Only 40% of Republicans engage in online activism. (Online activism is defined by three components; 1) going online for political news and information 2) communicating with others about politics online and 3) using social media tools (FBOOK, Twitter, Email) to interact with other voters/campaigns.)”
Wait a sec - only 40% of Republicans? That actually sounds huge, it could mean 32,000 Republican online activists in Travis alone. Republicans need facebook but maybe they need MySpace too to reach the 'other half' of social media consumers.

PS. Rick Perry does social media. New twitter slogan - "So easy, an Aggie can do it!"

Austin and Texas July 4th Tea Parties

If you were wondering "what next" for the  Tea Party movement that rallied 700,000 on April 15th: They are doing it again.  There are rallies locally in Austin and across Texas in the patriotic spirit of America's Declaration of Independence.

The Dallas July 4th Tea Party event is being planned and billed as an extravaganza:
Nationally-known speakers – World-famous musicians – Fantastic fireworks extravaganza – Food, fun and more! 

Tens of thousands of citizens from Texas and around the region are expected to turn out from 3pm to midnight on July 4, 2009 for America’s Tea Party, a FREE rally and fireworks show to be held at the famous Southfork Ranch near Dallas, TX. Southfork is internationally known as the film location for the legendary “Dallas” television series.

Here are the Austin Tea Party Rallies with special guests at a Friday rally and a July 4th rally:
July 3rd, 9:00am to 11:00am, Austin Tea Party
Zilker Park Polo Field [Barton Springs Road and MOPAC]
Special guests: Joe the Plumber and KLBJ morning talk show host Sgt. Sam Cox
More info at

July 4th, 2:00pm to 4:00pm, Austin Independence Day Tea Party
Texas State Capitol South Steps/Lawn
Special guests: U.S. Senator John Cornyn, U.S. Congressman Louie Gohmert, State Rep. Wayne Christian, others
More info at

After July 4th comes 9/12 March on Washington DC.