Sunday, April 29, 2012

For their next exploding cigar, the Democrats chose polygamy.

National Review ^ | April 29, 2012 | Mark Steyn

For their next exploding cigar, the Democrats chose polygamy...

Just for the record, Romney's father was not a polygamist; Romney's grandfather was not a polygamist; his great-grandfather was a polygamist...

Meanwhile, back in the female-friendly party, Obama's father was a polygamist; his grandfather was a polygamist; and his great-grandfather was a polygamist who had one more wife (five in total) than Romney's great-grandfather.

Obama is the first male in his line not to be a polygamist...

HHS Sebelius Forced to Admit Total Constitutional Ignorance of Health Mandate Legal Issues!

By P.J. Gladnick | April 29, 2012 | 15:01

"Get me outta here! I'm being forced in a most humiliating manner to reveal to all the world my profound ignorance of basic constitutional issues".

Something like that thought must have been rolling around inside the mind of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius while she completely choked under questioning about these legal issues by South Carolina Congressman Trey Gowdy. Even if you disagree profoundly with Sebelius you almost have to feel embarrassed by her pathetic performance last week at the House Education and Workforce Committee hearing. Fortunately for Sebelius her confessions of ignorance were completely ignored by the Mainstream Media but the video (and below the fold) lives on for all eternity to serve as a testament to liberal ignorance and arrogance.

Thus far the only two news sites to cover this train wreck of a testimony by Sebelius are the New York Sun and the Catholic News Agency. Here is the Sun's description of the video:
What a remarkable glimpse of the gulf between the administration and Congress over religious freedom is flashing around the internet. It is a Youtube video of the secretary of health and human services, Kathleen Sebelius, at a hearing of the House Education and Workforce Committee hearing. She is being grilled by a Republican congressman of South Carolina, Trey Gowdy. He asks her about her a statement she has made about seeking a balance between believer’s rights and the contraception mandate. What becomes clear is that there is no feel for, no thought about, but glancing attention to the Constitution the secretary is sworn to support.
Yes, the video is "flashing around the internet" but the MSM has yet to report on it. The Catholic New Agency provides additional details on what took place:
HHS secretary Kathleen Sebelius says she was unaware of legal precedents confirming religious freedom, even as she sought a “balance” between believers' rights and the contraception mandate.
“I'm not a lawyer, and I don't pretend to understand the nuances of the constitutional balancing tests,” Sebelius told Representative Trey Gowdy (R–SC) during an April 26 hearing.
In her responses to subsequent questions, the secretary admitted she was unaware of Supreme Court cases stretching back several decades, in which religious believers' rights against government intrusion were upheld by the court.
Just how amazingly "unaware" Sebelius was can be seen later in the report:
Gowdy cited the “rational basis” test – which involves the legitimacy of a state's interest in legislation – as well as the criteria of “intermediate scrutiny” and “strict scrutiny,” which judges apply in order to gauge a law's relevance to fundamental state concerns.
When Sebelius responded that she did not understand the “nuances” of these tests, she was pressed by Gowdy to explain why she regarded the contraception mandate as constitutionally valid. The rule has been criticized for requiring religious groups to cooperate in providing sterilization and abortifacients.
“This mandate is going to wind up in the Supreme Court,” the South Carolina representative declared.
“We can talk about the politics all we want to. I want to talk about the law,” he told Sebelius. “I want to talk about balancing religious liberty with whatever else you think it's appropriate to balance it with – because you used the word 'balance.'”
“Which of those three tests is the appropriate test to use when considering religious liberty?”
“I am not going to wade into constitutional law,” Sebelius responded. “We are implementing the (health care reform) law that was passed by the Congress, signed by the president, which directed our department to develop a package of preventive health services for women.”
Sebelius said she agreed with the statement that government could not “force certain religious beliefs on its citizens.” When asked why this could not happen, she cited “the separation of church and state,” a phrase not found in the U.S. Constitution.
“It's the Constitution,” Gowdy replied, citing the First Amendment which guarantees the “free exercise of religion.”
Sebelius also agreed with Gowdy's statement that government could not “decide which religious beliefs are acceptable and not acceptable.” This, she acknowledged, is “part of our Constitution.”
“So, before this rule was promulgated,” Gowdy continued, referring to the federal contraception mandate, “did you read any of the Supreme Court cases on religious liberty?”
“I did not,” Sebelius responded.
...“So when a state said, 'You have to send your children to school until a certain age,' and a religious group objected because they did not want to send their children to school until that certain age, do you know who won?” he asked. “It went to the Supreme Court.”
The 1970s case, Wisconsin v. Yoder, is considered a landmark in U.S. jurisprudence. Sebelius said she did not know its outcome. “The religious group won,” Gowdy informed her.
“I think the state has a compelling interest in banning animal sacrifice,” he continued. “When a state banned the practice of animal sacrifice and a religious group objected, it went to the Supreme Court. Do you know who won that?”
“I do not, sir,” Sebelius responded. She was again informed that the religious group prevailed, in the 1993 case of Church of Lukumi Babalu Aye v. Hialeah.
“When a religious group objected to having a certain license tag on their cars, it went to the Supreme Court,” Gowdy said, in an apparent reference to the 1976 case of Wooley v. Maynard. “Do you know who won?”
Sebelius said she was unaware of this outcome as well. “The religious group won,” Gowdy told her.
The congressman also noted the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's recent 9-0 loss in the Supreme Court. The commission accused a Lutheran church and school of retaliatory firing, but lost the case when all nine justices upheld the school's right to choose employees on religious grounds.
“So when you say you 'balanced' things,” Gowdy said, “can you see why I might be seeking a constitutional balancing, instead of any other kind?”
“I do,” Sebelius said, “and I defer to our lawyers to give me good advice on the Constitution. I do not pretend to be a constitutional lawyer.”
“Is there a legal memo that you relied on?” Gowdy asked. “At least when Attorney General Holder made his recess appointments, there was a legal memo that he relied on. Is there one that you can share with us?”
“Attorney General Holder clearly runs the Justice Department and lives in a world of legal memos,” Sebelius responded, saying she “relied on discussions.”
And apparently Sebelius lives in a world of liberal bubbles divorced from legal reality.
Please be sure to watch the video to properly savor the full flavor of the comedy and pathos, along with irritation, presented by Sebelius. Remember Kathleen, thanks to your MSM allies your embarrassing "command performance" on Capitol Hill remains a secret...por ahora.
p.s. Church of Lukumi Babalu Aye v. Hialeah? I have to remember that case just for the name.

Read more:

First Family’s Lavish Vacations Defended

Semi-News/Semi-Satire ^ | 28 April 2012 | John Semmens

Since President Barack Obama assumed office the First Family has racked up a total of 17 vacations. This is nearly five times the number of excursions taken by a typical American family over that time span. Costs are also a sore point. One trip to Spain hit up taxpayers for almost $500,000.

The high costs are not really the Obamas’ fault explained First Lady Michelle. “It’s only because Barack is the President that the cost is so high,” she argued. “We are hostages to the office. Everywhere we go we have to be accompanied by an entourage of bodyguards and personal assistants. We can’t just book a commercial flight and rent a car like common people do. Get used to it—expensive travel comes with the territory.”

As for the seemingly large number of trips, Michelle pointed out that “a person is only President for eight years. We’re just trying to cram in as much as we can in this limited amount of time. We’d be fools not to take advantage of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

If you missed any of this week's other semi-news posts you can find them at...

Obama falls short of meteoric expectations abroad...The enthusiasm verging on euphoria that initially greeted Obama in 2008 seems to be gone for good!

Yahoo ^ | 4/29/12 | Peter Apps, Political Risk Correspondent - Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - It was not just U.S. Democratic voters who were looking forward to "hope and change" when Barack Obama became the 44th U.S. president.
Around the world, many anticipated the United States would behave very differently under the new leader. They wanted to hear less about Americans swaggering and throwing their weight around. Some, perhaps, wanted more talk of U.S.-style freedom and democracy, but not if it meant Washington imposing its will.
A scandal over the hiring of prostitutes by the U.S. Secret Service in Colombia, killings and Koran burnings in Afghanistan and drone strikes in Pakistan have helped fuel an impression of a United States that globally does what it wants regardless of others.
Even the "Arab Spring," some complain, showcased U.S. hypocrisy: Washington withdrew support from autocratic allies like Egypt's Hosni Mubarak only when it became clear they were on the way out ..
The failure to close the Guantanamo Bay military prison in Cuba, .. despite Obama's promises both before and after his election, has added to the disillusionment.
A poll released last week by Gallup and conducted across 136 countries showed 46 percent of respondents had a positive view of U.S. global leadership. That has fallen gradually from 49 percent in 2009 immediately after Obama's election, the highest since Gallup began polling on the issue in 2005.
It remains well above the 34 percent recorded in 2008, the last year of the George W. Bush administration.
Obama is also seen as much more popular internationally than his presumptive Republican challenger in November's election, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, who has indicated he would take a hard line with countries such as Russia and China.

The enthusiasm verging on euphoria that initially greeted Obama, however, seems to be gone for good.
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Congressman Groped by TSA Agent

Semi-News/Semi-Satire ^ | 28 April 2012 | John Semmens

Representative Francisco Canseco (R-Texas) took offense when a Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agent grabbed his penis during a “routine” pat down at the San Antonio Airport. The Congressman’s effort to push the agent’s hand aside was characterized as “an assault” that “impeded security protocols” by Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. Charges may be pending.
“Nothing must be allowed to interfere with our efforts to keep this nation secure from threats,” Napolitano said. “It is essential that everyone fully comply with the procedures of the TSA. Thorough searches of sensitive areas are essential. To put them off-limits would be to invite terrorists to conceal weapons there. Patriotic Americans would willingly put aside any notions of personal privacy for the sake of public safety.”
Napolitano denied that the State Department’s recent declaration that the war on terror is over should affect TSA procedures. “I’ve said many times that al-Qaeda is not the only threat we face,” Napolitano declared. “In my opinion, there are much greater threats coming from home-grown opponents of our government. As we speak, groups are organizing efforts to unseat the President. I think we must remain vigilant.”

If you missed any of this week's other semi-news posts you can find them at...

Obama & Democrats not serious about passing budget!

cnn ^ | updated 12:21 PM EDT, Sun April 29, 2012 | Ron Johnson

Editor's note: U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wisconsin, is a member of the Senate Budget Committee.

(CNN) -- The U.S. government is the largest financial entity in the world. Nothing else comes close.
On Sunday, April 29, it will be exactly three years since the U.S. Senate passed a budget.

If you own or work for a small business that has a loan from a bank, I'm quite sure your business has a budget -- and a rather detailed budget at that. Every year around tax time, many American families sit down to fill out tax forms, estimate their income, and set spending priorities for the upcoming year. It's the responsible thing to do.

And yet, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid appears to believe it is not necessary for the Senate to fulfill its legal responsibility by debating and passing a budget to account for $3.8 trillion in federal spending next fiscal year, $15.6 trillion of debt and, according to figures produced by the Senate Budget Committee Republican staff, more than $65 trillion in additional unfunded liabilities.
To provide some perspective to these incomprehensible numbers, the total net private asset base -- that is, the net value of all household assets, small business assets, and large business assets -- of the United States is $82 trillion, according to figures from the Federal Reserve Flow of Funds Account from March 8, 2012.
Even worse, President Barack Obama and his administration seem to view budgeting as just one more political maneuver. His efforts have been so completely unserious that the President's 2012 budget was rejected by a vote of 97-0 in the Senate. And three weeks ago, when Rep. Mick Mulvaney, R-South Carolina, sponsored a budget proposal based on Obama's 2013 budget plan, it lost in the House by a vote of 414-0.
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Barack Obama: Occupying the White House - Not Made in America! ^ | April 29, 2012 | Scott Rohter

Barack Obama: Occupying the White House Not Made in America! By Scott Rohter, May 2012
Last week twelve Secret Service Agents were ordered back home to the United States, from Cartagena, Columbia because they were caught drinking on the job and using the services of Columbian prostitutes when they were supposed to be preparing for the President’s upcoming Summit of the Americas Conference. They were ordered back home to Washington where they were promptly fired, forced to resign, and made to forfeit their security clearances.

This week new revelations have surfaced involving other Secret Service Agents and similar inappropriate behavior in El Salvador in 2011, Buenos Aires in 2009, and in Moscow as far back as the year 2000 during the Bill Clinton Presidency, calling into question their discretion or the lack of it, and the integrity of the entire Secret Service Department. Good grief!! The lack of morale and the rampant unprofessionalism in the Secret Service has gone viral. It has become widespread and commonplace, and it has infected the entire Department!

In my previous article Breakdown of Morale in the Ranks, I speculated that the reason for this breakdown of morale might be that Barack Obama is not even legally qualified to be President of the United States, not having met the basic Constitutional requirement of being a natural born citizen, and not having a valid American birth certificate to prove it. Barack Obama is not an American born citizen. He is not made in America!
But it is now clear that this scurrilous behavior of the Secret Service goes back way before Barack Obama ever became President. It goes all the way back to the days of President Bill “I did not have sexual relations with that woman” Clinton! To read more visit my website
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

We cannot count on the Supremes to kill Obamacare. Opponents must keep fighting it on all fronts. ^ | April 29, 2012 | Michael F. Cannon

Obamacare had a bad couple of days before the Supreme Court — so bad that President Obama made some ill-considered comments about the Court from which he still hasn't totally backpedaled. Though the oral arguments over the individual mandate and severability were encouraging, we cannot count on the Supremes to kill Obamacare. Opponents must keep fighting it on all fronts.

The most important front right now is to ensure that states do not create the health-insurance exchanges Obamacare needs in order to operate. Refusing to create exchanges is the most powerful thing states can do to take Obamacare down. Think of it as an insurance policy in case the Supreme Court whiffs.
Exchanges are the new government bureaucracies through which millions of Americans will be compelled to purchase Obamacare's overpriced and overregulated health insurance. Through these bureaucracies, insurance companies will receive hundreds of billions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies. Without these bureaucracies, Obamacare cannot work.

Here are just a few reasons why states should refuse to create them.
Jobs. Refusing to create an exchange will block Obamacare from imposing a tax on employers whose health benefits do not meet the federal government's definition of "essential" coverage. That tax can run as high as $3,000 per employee. A state that refuses to create an exchange will spare its employers from that tax, and will therefore enable them to create more jobs.
Religious freedom. In blocking that employer tax, state officials would likewise block Obamacare's effort to force religious employers to provide coverage for services they find immoral — like contraception, pharmaceutical abortions, and sterilization.
The federal debt. Refusing to create exchanges would also reduce the federal debt, because it would prevent the Obama administration from doling out billions of dollars in subsidies to private insurance companies.
The U.S. Constitution. The Obama administration has indicated that it might try to tax employers and hand out those subsidies anyway — even in states that don't create an exchange, and even though neither Obamacare nor any other federal law gives it the power to do so. If that happens, the fact that a state has refused to create an exchange would give every large employer in the state — including the state government itself — the ability to go to court to block the administration's attempt to usurp Congress's legislative powers.
A lower state tax burden. States that opt to create an exchange can expect to pay anywhere from $10 million to $100 million per year to run it. But if states refuse, Obamacare says the federal government must pay to create one. Why should states pay for something that the federal government is giving away?
Bye-bye, Obamacare. That is, if the feds can create an exchange at all. The Obama administration has admitted it doesn't have the money — and good luck getting any such funding through the GOP-controlled House. Moreover, without state-run exchanges, the feds can't subsidize private insurance companies. That by itself could cause Obamacare to collapse. .author_pub2 a { float:right; margin: 10px 0 8px 8px; display:block; height: 142px; width: 110px; background: url(/people/pub_photos/cannon.jpg) no-repeat -110px 0; } .author_pub2a a { float:right; margin: 10px 0 8px 8px; display:block; height: 142px; width: 110px; background: url(/people/pub_photos/cannon.jpg) no-repeat 0 0; }

Michael F. Cannon is director of health policy studies at the Cato Institute and coauthor of Healthy Competition: What's Holding Back Health Care and How to Free It.
More by Michael F. Cannon Unfortunately, ever since Obamacare became law, lobbyists for the insurance companies and others who would financially benefit from it have been wooing state officials with the false promise that a state-run exchange would preserve state control over health care. If the Supreme Court fails to strike down the entire law, they'll say, "Aw, shucks. Now you have to create an exchange."
Nonsense. Obamacare does not and cannot mandate that states create exchanges. Moreover, state-run exchanges do not preserve local control. They will do Washington's bidding, or else they will be commandeered or swept aside.
Even if we assume the Obama administration figures out a way to impose a federal exchange on states, are there any atrocities a federal exchange might inflict that federal regulations could not require state-run exchanges to inflict? Of course not.
That's why every conservative and free-market group, including the Heritage Foundation and the American Legislative Exchange Council, has advised states to refuse to create an exchange and to send all related grants back to Washington. Florida, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Wisconsin have already done so.
If the Court strikes Obamacare down, state officials who refused to create an exchange will look prescient. If not, they will be positioned to drive a stake through its heart.
This article appeared on National Review (Online) 

Illegal Exodus Shows Jobs Matter More Than Handouts

IBD ^ | 04/27/2012

President Obama's Huey Long-style government spending has showered benefits on illegals. That's ironic, because for the first time since the 1930s they would now rather live in Mexico. Maybe jobs matter after all.

At a Hispanic Community Action Summit led by Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa this month, 39 federal officials from agencies ranging from ICE to the EPA courted hundreds of Hispanic activists with one message: Claim your government benefits.
They offered up goodies from food aid to educational benefits to help in fighting deportation.
The outreach, said a conference organizer, was based on a "community organizing" approach of asking Latinos what they wanted and giving it to them.
Well, according to a new study by Pew Hispanic Center, plenty just want jobs, not handouts. Mexican illegal immigrants — about 70% of the 10 million-plus illegals in the U.S. — are leaving America in droves.
For the first time since the Great Depression, more are going back to Mexico than are coming here. Pew estimates that 1.4 million Mexicans came to America in the five years ended in 2010, while the same number and their U.S.-born children returned home.
At about the same time, Obama has showered so much federal largess on the Hispanic community to shore up support for the Latino vote.
In addition to benefits regardless of immigration status, he's offered de facto amnesty by cutting down on deportations, saying U.S. policy will be to prioritize those who have committed crimes. By manipulating statistics to include voluntary deportations, he's managed to make it appear that deportations are up to 400,000.
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Green Energy

Don't Worry

Bite 'em


Justice Department Working With Radical Leftist Groups to Steal Elections! ^ | April 28, 2012 | Katie Pavlich

HOUSTON, TX- Judicial Watch is the largest non-profit government watchdog group in the country with a mission dedicated to prosecuting corruption. Headed by President Tom Fitton, Judicial Watch is armed and ready for election 2012 and the upcoming battle against voter fraud.

Since the Obama administration came to power in 2009, Judicial Watch has filed more than 300 Freedom of Information Act requests with the Obama Administration.

“It’s about time they are afraid of us,” Fitton said. “We just seek to enforce the law.”

The Obama administration is no stranger to scandals; Fast and Furious, Solyndra, GSA, Secret Service, Black Panther Voter Intimidation Case, etc. but Fitton warned attendees of the National True the Vote Summit Saturday that Americans shouldn’t assume that because there’s a topic in the news that people are interested in it and actually investigating it.

“Effective oversight isn’t coming in afterward,” Fitton said. “Effective oversight is stopping it [before it starts].”

As I wrote last night, it is clear the Obama Justice Department is out of control, but we haven’t seen everything yet.

“I’m not being over the top here, I fear the Obama gang is setting themselves up to steal the elections if possible,” Fitton said. “The most problematic area here is the Justice Department.”

Project Vote and ACORN have not gone away, they’ve just been splintered and renamed. On top of still being in existence, even after Hannah Giles and James O’Keefe proved the group was willing to help with the sex trafficking of underage girls, the Obama Justice Department is working directly with these groups in an effort to steal the White House.

“The Justice Department isn’t being run by political appointees, it’s being run by outside activists,” Fitton said. “This attorney general is the most partisan hack we’ve had in office since Richard Nixon’s day.”

These same activists are pressuring states on their voter registration and voter I.D. laws and are working hand-in-hand with the Justice Department to sue those states.

Fitton also warned of Obama’s goals for amnesty and opposition to citizenship verification at the polls. Illegal immigrants voting in states that do not have voter I.D. laws or voter registration verification, is a serious problem.

“This is not about the Hispanic vote, this about the illegal alien vote. This is a serious threat to the integrity of our elections,” Fitton said.

Despite these facts, the Obama machine isn’t going to take November without a fight or accountability.

“If this administration thinks they’re going to sneak their way into office, we’re going to be there yelling at them, at least,” Fitton said.

Don't look now, but Social Security's trust funds are vanishing!

Washington Examiner ^ | 04/27/2012 | Veronique de Rugy

You had better start increasing your personal retirement savings, because Social Security is fast approaching insolvency. According to the latest Social Security Trustees' report, released Monday, the program's combined trust funds will be exhausted by 2033 -- three years earlier than last year's projection and seven years earlier than projections made in 2006.

This means that by 2033 Social Security benefits would have to be slashed significantly. Sounds bad, right? Well, it gets worse.

Since 2010, Social Security has been running a permanent cash-flow deficit. This means that the taxes collected for the program aren't enough to cover the benefits going to retirees. The last time this happened was at the beginning of the 1980s.
Social Security optimists will argue, this time around, that the program can draw on the $2.7 trillion in assets accumulated in its trust funds. That's why Congress created the trust funds in 1983, following the recommendations of the Greenspan Commission. In any year when the program runs a surplus, Social Security invests it in trust funds, from which benefits are paid in years when outlays exceeded payroll tax receipts.
For instance in 2011, the payroll tax brought in $691 billion to pay the $746 billion in retirement benefits. To fill the gap, Social Security drew from the trust fund balances to make payments to retirees. This system will theoretically continue until the trust fund assets are exhausted in 2033. At that point, current law dictates that benefits will be slashed to the level of payroll tax revenues. That will translate to a 25 percent benefit cut across the board.
Think about it this way. Today, monthly Social Security benefits average $1,125 per recipient. After the cut, benefits would dropped to $843.75 -- a $3,375 reduction in benefits a year..
There's another reason why these trends are alarming. For years, the federal government has used Social Security's surpluses to pay for roads, education and wars. Now that the Social Security program will be demanding its money back from the Department of Treasury on an annual basis, the government will have to borrow more and more from investors, increasing the publicly held debt at a greater pace.
Lawmakers could also cut benefits or raise taxes, but they are usually reluctant to go down these unpopular roads. Neither party has introduced a serious plan to reform Social Security, but both sides have, for two years running, supported reductions in payroll tax rates without equal benefit cuts. To pull this off, policymakers borrow yet more money and transfer it to the Social Security Trust Fund to make it appear as if tax revenue was collected. It is another unfunded promise to seniors that will be paid for by future generations.
Unfortunately, Congress has been using a similar gimmick for some time. Beneficiaries of the Earned Income Tax Credit, for example, already have their share of the payroll tax refunded to them. The Making Work Pay tax credit -- part of the stimulus bill -- did the same.
The silver lining to Social Security's new annual deficit is that it exposes the fiction that the program doesn't need reform because it is fully backed by tax contributions. This is important, because a failure to reform the program means dramatic benefits cuts in the future, even for the poorest Americans. Lawmakers have many policy options to choose from: private accounts, privatization with safety net for the poor or eligibility age hike. The only bad option is to do nothing.

Rally to back hard-line Arizona sheriff

Chicago Tribune ^ | April 28,2012 | Tim Gaynor(Reuters)

FOUNTAIN HILLS, Ariz., April 28 (Reuters) - As many as 2000

activists, some chanting "go Joe, go Joe," rallied in Arizona on
Saturday to support Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who is
facing a federal racial-profiling probe for his police sweeps
against illegal immigrants.

"Sheriff Joe is one of the very few guys who will enforce
the immigration laws across this nation," said Randy Hatch, who
used a megaphone to rally supporters of Arpaio at a park in this
northeast Phoenix valley city.

"Every constitution and country that has ever existed has
had to have sovereign borders," he said to cheers from the
crowd, some clutching placards reading "Sheriff Joe keeps us
safe" and

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Blacks in South L.A. Have A Bleaker Jobs Picture Than In 1992 [Except Millionaire Maxine Waters!]

LATimes ^ | April 27, 2012 | Ricardo Lopez

Blacks in South L.A. Have A Bleaker Jobs Picture Than In 1992 Median income in South Los Angeles is lower now than during the 1992 riots, and the unemployment rate has reached even more dire levels.
By Ricardo Lopez April 28, 2012 Two decades after the L.A. riots brought pledges of help to rebuild South Los Angeles, the area is worse off in many ways than it was in 1992.
Median income, when adjusted for inflation, is lower. Many middle-class blacks have fled in search of safer neighborhoods and better schools.
And the unemployment rate, which was bad at the time of the riots, has reached even more dire levels. In two areas of South Los Angeles — Florence Graham and Westmont — unemployment is almost 24%. Back in 1992, it was 21% in Florence Graham and 17% in Westmont.
Last summer, thousands of South Los Angeles residents showed up to a job fair that brought out almost 200 employers at Crenshaw Christian Center on Vermont Avenue. The event, organized by Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Los Angeles), was seen by some as grandstanding.
"People were really skeptical," said Kokayi Kwa Jitahidi, a community organizer with the nonprofit Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy. "People thought, 'Another job fair?'"
There have been training and other job programs — both privately and government-funded — in the roughly 51-square-mile area in the last two decades. A post-riots report said the area needed an investment of about $6 billion and the creation of 75,000 to 94,000 jobs.
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Arizona v. United States: Reading the Tea Leaves of Oral Argument

American Thinker ^ | April 29, 2012 | Herbert W. Titus and WIlliam J. Olson

The issue arose early in the oral argument, even before the solicitor general could make his claim of exclusivity. Justice Scalia kicked off, asking Mr. Clement whether he would concede "that the State has to accept within its borders all people who have no right to be there, that the Federal Government has no interest in removing ... and the State has no power to close its borders to people who have no right to be there."

This time Mr. Clement answered: "I think my answer to that is no." But he did not back up his answer with either reason or conviction, resting Arizona's case on the sole ground that the state has the constitutional right to help the federal government to enforce federal law. In contrast, General Verrilli boldly rejected Mr. Clement's basic argument that the Arizona immigration law was nothing more than the state "aid to Federal immigration enforcement," when as a matter of fact, "Arizona is pursuing its own policy of attrition through enforcement and that the provisions of this law are designed to work together to drive unlawfully present aliens out of the State. That is something Arizona cannot do because the Constitution vests exclusive --"
Before General Verrilli could finish his sentence, Justice Sotomayor asked him to "answer Justice Scalia's earlier question...whether it would be the Government's position that Arizona doesn't have the power to exclude or remove ... from its borders a person who's here illegally." Given the opportunity to finish his sentence, General Verrilli stated: "It is our position [that] the Constitution vests exclusive authority over immigration matters with the national government."
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Sarah Palin tells Christian women to follow Alabama's motto, 'Dare to defend our rights'

The Birmingham News ^ | April 28, 2012 | Eric Velasco

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama -- Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin told an enthusiastic gathering of Christian women today that they should follow Alabama's state motto and dare to defend their rights.
"I'm not just talking about our political rights, but the rights we are given as a daughter of God," the 2008 Republican vice-presidential candidate told women this afternoon at the Extraordinary Women's Conference in Birmingham.

"He trusts us with the responsibility to live big, to live bold, to live passionately and to live vibrantly so we can effect change to the world around us," she said.
Palin was the keynote speaker at the two-day gathering organized by the Virginia-based group, Extraordinary Women. Speakers discussed their own faith journeys, based on the theme "passionate faith."
Palin used examples from her political and personal life, as well as the lives of her children and grandchild, Tripp, to show why a strong faith in God is crucial to surviving life's challenges and setbacks.
She discussed how giving birth to her youngest child, Trig, who has Down syndrome, helped strengthen her faith.
"He is the most precious, amazing child," she said. "God has good plans for us. Trig shows us what really matters and how much God loves us. He only will give us the best."
Palin, an author and commentator paid homage to Alabama's prowess on the college football gridiron -- giving both "Roll Tide" and "War Eagle" shoutouts.
She praised recently drafted Crimson Tide star Trent Richardson as a role model for recently accompanying a cancer patient to her school prom and "giving this girl hope."
She said the nation has recognized Alabama as "a champion in the midst of storms, of restoration." As Alabama rebuilds from last year's deadly tornadoes, the country recognizes how its residents "are persevering with grace," she said.
Palin used the recently broken crystal BCS championship trophy as a metaphor for the state's travails, and the strength that comes from faith.
"It provides a providential lesson," she said. "Shattered dreams and things can be restored."
Palin veered into politics, touching on national Republican Party themes such as the size of the national debt, the country's dependence on foreign oil instead of drilling domestically and the need to support Israel.
She warned that the federal government now risks making the same mistakes as the captain of the ill-fated cruise ship Titanic, ignoring warnings of danger ahead until it is irreparably damaged and sinks.
Palin also took potshots at the "leftist, liberal reporters" and "granola crunchers" who oppose gun-owners' rights. She told the audience to stick to their beliefs and values.
"It's hurt people who hurt people," she said.
But Palin's message Saturday mainly centered on the message that hope and faith are inseparable and that believers should remain strong in their faith when it inevitably is tested.
"Don't be intimidated as they try to reduce you, to mock you, to stop you," she said. "Get off the sidelines. We were created to make a difference and help others put back together their shattered lives and dreams."