Friday, June 8, 2012

Nobody's doing fine, DUMMY!


TalkingSides.com ^ | 08/08/12 | CaroleL



Presidential candidate Barack Obama took a break from his jam-packed fundraising schedule this morning to squeeze in a special guest appearance as President of the United States. Almost a week after the most recent round of dismal employment reports, Mr. Obama took to the podium to make what was advertised as a statement on the economy. Not surprisingly, the event was just another stump speech from our Campaigner-in-Chief.


Arriving 25 minutes late, the president delivered the same old excuses and called for the same old non-solution - specifically that Congress pass the "jobs plan" he's been pushing for almost a year.


Of course that jobs plan is nothing but more wasteful government spending just like the $800 billion stimulus which failed to produce the promised results. Yet today the president claimed that had this latest scheme been approved by Congress, "we'd be on track to have a million more Americans working this year. The unemployment rate would be lower. Our economy would be stronger."


Not able to stop at one incredulous statement he went on to say, "The private sector is doing fine" and "if Republicans want to be helpful" they should "be thinking about how do we help state and local governments."

(Excerpt) Read more at talkingsides.com ...

Obama Green-Tech Program That Backed Solyndra Struggles To Create Jobs!


Washington Post ^ | September 14, 2011 | Carol D. Leonnig and Steven Mufson




A $38.6 billion loan guarantee program that the Obama administration promised would create or save 65,000 jobs has created just a few thousand jobs two years after it began, government records show.


The program — designed to jump-start the nation’s clean technology industry by giving energy companies access to low-cost, government-backed loans — has directly created 3,545 new, permanent jobs after giving out almost half the allocated amount, according to Energy Department tallies.


President Obama has made “green jobs” a showcase of his recovery plan, vowing to foster new jobs, new technologies and more competitive American industries. But the loan guarantee program came under scrutiny Wednesday from Republicans and Democrats at a House oversight committee hearing about the collapse of Solyndra, a solar-panel maker whose closure could leave taxpayers on the hook for as much as $527 million.


The GOP lawmakers accused the administration of rushing approval of a guarantee of the firm’s project and failing to adequately vet it. “My goodness. We should be reviewing every one of these loan guarantee” projects, said Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.).

(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...

Walker Lesson: We Can Stand Up To Big Unions!


Capitol Confidential ^ | 6/8/2012 | Jack Spencer



On Tuesday, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker won his statewide recall election 53 to 46 percent in a state that has been "blue" longer than Michigan in terms of voting for Democrats in presidential elections.
Many observers said it was the biggest loss government unions have ever experienced.
"It’s more than a big deal, it’s a huge deal,” said Vincent Vernuccio, Labor Policy Counsel at the Competitive Enterprise Institute. "It will embolden governors and legislators across the country. They'll know that they can stand up for taxpayers against special interests.
"They’ll understand that they might have to endure some pain, but they’ll know they can win in the end and go down in history as people who helped save their states."
Announcement of the recall election results marked the climax of nearly 16 months of a political war that pitted the unions against Walker and Wisconsin's conservative legislature. This fight began in the early months of 2011, when the unions, particularly government unions, reacted to reforms Walker and the legislature were putting in place.
Among the reforms that enraged the government unions was having state employees pay a 5.8 percent contribution into their pension plans and pay for 12 percent of their health care. In response, the unions shipped tens of thousands of protesters and activists into the Badger State. They tried to use a State Supreme Court race and Senate recalls as referendums against the reforms. Both efforts failed. Then the unions turned in enough signatures for Walker to face a recall election. Now they’ve lost in that effort as well.
Dennis Darnoi, a Farmington Hills Political Consultant, said he thinks government employee unions have failed to adjust to changing times.
"Ten to 15 years ago there was sort of the sense of a level of equality," Darnoi said. "In that economy there wasn't nearly as much impact on the budgets. Also, it seems like the unions have become more intractable. They used to make concessions where needed. Now they aren't doing that at all.
"It seems like on every issue the unions are resisting," Darnoi continued. "Then, invariably, a story comes out about top union brass making large salaries. Their attitude no longer seems to have anything to do with compromise. It's not about sharing in a solution — it's all about what they say they're entitled to."
Many voters now see view government unions as privileged partisans who look at taxpayers as an endless supply of money to fund their benefits and perks.
"Union salaries and benefits kept growing and growing,” said Inside Michigan Politics Editor Bill Ballenger. "They had the best of both worlds. This went on for a long time and it didn't seem to be much of an issue, except for with a few voices in the wilderness, like the Mackinac Center, which had long been saying that something was rotten in Denmark.
"So when there was finally a backlash, it caught a lot of people off guard,” Ballenger continued. "What finally seemed to do it was the recession in 2008. I still don't know how much it was the result of Conservative efforts or if it was just a case of it being a lagging indicator."
Ballenger said he doesn't buy the union argument that Walker only won because of the money he spent on the race.
"Look, Walker was no shrinking violet when it came to going out and raising money for his defense," Ballenger said. "But this is more than the result of him being well-funded. By the time the Walker recall election came, the unions in Wisconsin weren't even using the same arguments they'd originally used. Those arguments just weren't working anymore."
A year ago when the unions were attacking Walker's reforms they claimed he was taking away "fundamental American rights." The attacks changed to alleged cuts in education and other themes.
John Truscott, of Lansing-based Truscott Rossman, was communications director for former Michigan Governor John Engler in the 1990s.
"I don't think it would have been easy to see this coming back in the 1990s," said John Truscott, who was communications director for former Gov. John Engler and now runs a Lansing-based communications firm. "Government unions were a lot stronger back then. Now, I think they're fighting for their lives. They've been decimated. That's why they're so desperately trying to rally the troops.
“Another thing that has changed is that private sector union members aren't very sympathetic with the government unions," he said. "They see government unions as having had a lot of things just handed to them."

FLORIDA THUMBS NOSE AT DOJ; CLEANS VOTER ROLLS OF FELONS & ILLEGALS


Big Government ^ | 6-8-12 | MARGARET MENGE



Leonard Pitts, possibly the worst columnist taking up space at a major American newspaper, complains this week about Florida’s attempt to clean its voter roll in a column entitled ‘GOP Power Play.’ Specifically, he’s outraged that a voter should have to prove eligibility!

The outrage is that the 19 million people who live in Florida have been so ill served for so long by a lazy, incompetent and incurious press.

You would think after the independent review of the 2008 vote in Minneapolis-St. Paul found that 393 felons had voted, more than enough to eclipse Al Franken’s 312-vote margin of victory just in two counties, journos in Florida, the hotspot of election controversy, would have gotten on the ball and started combing through our voter roll to find out how many felons are on it, and how many dead people, how many non-citizens and how many second home owners already voting Up North.

They haven’t. None have, that I’veevery heard. Because they Don’t Care. They don’t a clean roll. Let’s face it. They want a roll they can monkey with.

There’s plenty of evidence the Florida voter roll has lots of ineligible voters on it.

(Excerpt) Read more at breitbart.com ...

Jobs, Money, Scott Walker: Is It Time for Democrats to Panic?


National Journal ^ | June 7, 2012 | By Naureen Khan



Democrats are having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad June. But if it’s time to start panicking, most of them haven’t gotten the memo.

Despite a spate of negative news, Democrats nationwide, both publicly and privately, seem remarkably Zen about their party’s prospects in November and unwilling to take out any frustration on their man in the Oval Office just yet. “Is there any anxiety on our side? Yes,” said Jerry Crawford, a longtime Democratic activist in Iowa. “Should the other side be feeling at least as much anxiety? Yes. There’s plenty of concern everywhere for both sides.”

(Excerpt) Read more at nationaljournal.com ...

Obamacare's Medical Device Tax Kills Jobs


ATR ^ | 2012-06-05 | Justin Sykes



Following close on the heels of the latest dismal jobs report this week is a House vote to repeal the Medical Device Tax. The Protect Medical Innovation Act, or H.R. 436, was introduced by Representative Erik Paulsen (R-MN) and thanks to bipartisan support, including 233 co-sponsors, was approved by the Ways & Means Committee by a vote of 23-11 last week. H.R. 436 will now go to the House floor for a vote sometime this week.
H.R. 436 seeks to repeal the Medical Device Excise Tax included as part of Obamacare legislation. As part of the Obamacare bill, a 2.3 percent tax increase on medical device manufacturers will begin in 2013, and could equate to $29 billion in additional taxes on medical device manufacturers, a cost which will inevitably be passed to the consumer. As H.R. 436 proceeds to the floor this week for a vote, House members on both sides of the aisle should vote in support of this repeal effort in order to protect healthcare manufacturing jobs, the healthcare manufacturing industry, and innovative efforts to improve healthcare in the United States.
The Employment Situation Summary released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics last week evidenced a stagnant unemployment rate of 8.2 percent under President Obama. However, the two sectors showing upward trends in employment, healthcare and manufacturing seem to be the targeted industries under Obamacare. Last month the healthcare industry added 33,000 jobs, with the manufacturing sector adding an additional 12,000 jobs to the labor force for a total of 45,000 jobs. If the Medical Device Tax goes forward this week, "the tax could result in job losses in excess of 43,000." The Medical Device Tax under Obamacare would not only work a direct burden on job creation, but would also work a hardship on the Medical Device Manufacturing Industry and create a virtually impenetrable economic barrier to innovation, placing most innovators in the red.
The industry as a whole would suffer as the Medical Device Tax would make for a $3 billion increase in taxes paid by medical device firms. The tax increase would cripple domestic medical manufacturers, leading to cost-cutting measures including job loss and outsourcing of medical manufacturing jobs and plants. Additionally, the $3 billion tax increase would inevitably lead to manufacturing costs being passed along to consumers and patients leading to increases in the costs of everything from bedpans to tongue depressors.
The effect the Medical Device Tax would have on innovators in the medical field is that medical device manufacturers may end up paying taxes on "devices sold at a loss." For example, Analogic, which specializes in innovative medical technology production, earned $3.7 million in net income last year. Under Obama's Medical Device Tax, Analogic would have paid roughly $7.5 million in taxes last year, amounting to a $3.8 million loss. The effect of this tax is unsustainable, killing innovation and jobs.
Thus, the negative effect the Medical Device Tax under Obamacare would have would be to discourage medical innovation, while also cutting job growth in two industries vital to the American economy. House members should vote in support of H.R. 436 this week in an effort to support American job growth and encourage medical innovation in the United States.
Read more: http://atr.org/obamacares-medical-device-tax-kills-jobs-a6932#ixzz1xEnSFsxx

Critics of Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s ‘Tent City’ Announce Protest, Then Chicken Out of Meeting!


Stand With Arizona ^ | 06-08-2012 | John Hill





by John Hill


Stand With Arizona

A pro-illegal alien activist group announced what they promised to be a "massive" protest to "demand" that Sheriff Joe Arpaio's famous Tent City be "shut down", but then chickened out when Arpaio invited them to his office to discuss it.
"Puente", a left-wing, Soros-funded group which advocates for illegal alien amnesty and against Arizona immigration law S.B. 1070, declared their intention to "take on" the "racist Sheriff Joe" and show they are "unafraid". But that all changed after this Sheriff Joe Facebook post:
Evidently Puente does not like my 19 year old successful tent city incarceration program with thousands protesting on June 23rd at the tents. Numerous presidential candidates have visited the tents and support the concept. I suggest leaders of Puente meet with me in my office to discuss concerns and save resources from demonstrating in the heat. I started tent city on Aug 2nd, 1993 and will be celebrating the 20th anniversary in August and plan on having some type of celebration.
Puente's response? Uh, we can't make it: "There's nothing for us to discuss...we just want this guy out of office," said Puente "organizer" Carlos Garcia.

So much for "undocumented and unafraid". This reminds us of the student protest against Sheriff Joe a few months back, where they planned to get arrested - NOT by Arpaio's deputies - but by the Phoenix P.D. - who they knew would just release them, unlike Arpaio.
In the video news report below, reporters absurdly give inmates a chance to whine about how they don't like the heat of Tent City (boo hoo!), and Sheriff Joe responds, "Thank you (to the ) men and women fighting for our country who are living in the same type of tents", and also recounts how the tent conditions act as a big deterrent for criminals to keep them from ever wanting to stay there again.
Indeed, Joe probably said it best a few years back, When an AP reporter visited Tent City on a particularly hot day, and interviewed an inmate complaining that “It feels like you’re in a furnace, it’s inhumane!” Arpaio overhead this and shot back:
“It’s 120 degrees in Iraq and our soldiers are living in tents too, and they have to wear full battle gear, but they did not commit any crimes, so shut your damned mouth!”
Amen to that! Sheriff Joe will NEVER shut down tent city, and we stand with Joe and his enforcement of immigration laws, and defiance in the face of attacks from Eric Holder and this corrupt administration. Video link below:
EXCERPT...CLICK HERE TO READ FULL ARTICLE

The Private Sector

EPA Official Showers Love on Anti-Fossil Fuel Activists!


National Legal & Policy Center ^ | June 8, 2012 | Paul Chesser



Susan Hedman
As President Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency continues to receive much-needed scrutiny as it conducts its reign of terror (“crucifying”) on fossil fuel industries, yet another renegade regional administrator has been shown in full alliance with environmental extremists in pursuit of regulations to kill oil and coal. Natural gas isn't far down the hit list.
This time it’s Region 5 Administrator Susan Hedman, a veteran attorney who has litigated environmental cases as part of the University of Maryland Environmental Law Center, as counsel for the Environmental Law and Policy Center, and as senior assistant attorney general in the Illinois Attorney General’s office. Last August she joined dozens of activists outside her Chicago office to celebrate the expected implementation of EPA’s Mercury Air Toxics Standard, which was released in December. Bloomberg reported that the rule would cost utilities an estimated $9.6 billion per year in compliance costs, fulfilling the president’s campaign promise to make electricity costs “necessarily skyrocket.”
“We really appreciate your enthusiastic support for this rule,” Hedman gushed before a crowd of 90-or-so eco-activists. “It’s quite literally a breath of fresh air compared with what’s going on in the nation’s capital these days,” she added, referring to a “tough political climate” for EPA.

VIDEO 3:35 minutes

Region 5 covers Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota. Among the groups represented at the rally, which gathered on the final day EPA accepted public comments on the rule (as though comments would change anything), were Union of Concerned Scientists, Sierra Club, Environment Illinois and several others. Health care representatives also participated, claiming the Clean Air Act that the rule would amend achieved data-specific milestones that are unverifiable.
“It saved 160,000 lives and prevented 86,000 emergency room visits last year alone,” said Brian Urbaszewski of the Respiratory Health Association of Metropolitan Chicago.
But Steve Milloy, who publishes the Web site Junkscience.com, co-wrote (with Harvard physicist Willie Soon) in the Washington Times that current levels of mercury (harmful to humans when deposited in water resources and ingested by fish) “are neither exceptional nor alarming.” The subject of their piece was an April hearing of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, in which the new EPA rule was scrutinized. Among those appearing was Syracuse University professor Charles Driscoll, who endorsed the position that emissions from coal-fired power plants in the U.S. are the primary cause of mercury pollution in the Great Lakes region, most of which falls under Hedman’s oversight.
“But a 2012 study in the journal Environmental Pollution noted that mercury in Lake Michigan, for example, has declined dramatically (more than 50 percent) since the mid-20th century,” Milloy and Soon wrote. “The study’s explanation for this decline has nothing to do with atmospheric deposition of mercury, but rather it was due to the curtailment of direct industrial and wastewater discharges in the lake.”
The study might have been dismissed as a mere disagreement among scientists, except one of the co-authors of the report was Driscoll!
As for Hedman, her sympathies and agenda in support of environmental extremism – specifically in support of the EPA MATS regulation.
“Thank you especially for this last group of comments coming in on the last day of our comment period on the new (MATS),” Hedman said in a congratulatory tone, holding up a huge stack of papers. “Really (emphasis hers) appreciate these. We’ll review these comments along with the other 600,000 comments that we’ve received in Washington, and we plan to have a final rule issued by November.”
Watch the video – do you think Hedman would have behaved similarly if groups of coal and utility workers held a publicity stunt about their own MATS comments in front of her Chicago office? Would you consider her, and EPA in general, a fair evaluator of all the comments they received on MATS?
“The unprecedented response that we have received to this rule tells me – and it tells the EPA generally – that Americans are tired of waiting for clean air…,” she said.
“In Washington, EPA faces a very tough political climate. But President Obama and (EPA) Administrator (Lisa) Jackson are standing firm in our fight to protect the environment, and the health of Americans, with environmental safeguards like these….Your active involvement on these issues is so very, very important. We’re all in this fight together, to make these safeguards a reality.”
Undoubtedly the political discomfort Hedman referred to comes from Congressional overseers like Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe, a Republican, who is the chamber’s strongest critic of the global warming alarmism industry and of excessive, inconsequential (health-wise) regulations of the utility sector. He recently called attention to the behavior of (now former) EPA Region 6 Administrator Al Armandariz, who in a video unearthed by Inhofe’s staff spoke of his practice of “crucifying” oil and natural gas companies to compel compliance. Armandariz resigned shortly after the video was revealed.
Hedman and Armandariz are only two in a systemic attitudinal problem at EPA. As NLPC revealed last month, Region 8 Administrator James Martin denies there is widespread scientific disagreement about whether global warming is a threat to the planet.
“You could have a convention of all the scientists who dispute climate change in a relatively small phone booth,” he told the Denver Post in 2008. Martin also was part of a ginned-up case in Pavillion, Wyoming, that insinuated groundwater contamination was attributable to hydraulic fracturing in the area, although testing did not prove conclusive.
And this week Inhofe has unveiled footage of Region 1 Administrator Curt Spalding, who praised Jackson – his boss – for her implementation of greenhouse gas standards on coal-fired power plants. “She had to do what the law and policy suggested,” he said, noting that the new regulations would lead to the destruction of coal-mining communities like those in West Virginia and Pennsylvania. Inhofe also released a video that contained series of clips of President Obama and various EPA regulators stating their mission to force the U.S. economy away from efficient and affordable fossil fuels, in favor of costly “green” energy.
Yesterday Armandariz was scheduled to testify before the House Energy and Commerce Committee about his “crucifying” comments and practices, but he cancelled at the last minute. He was still in Washington apparently, though, as evidence shows he met with Sierra Club officials at their headquarters a few blocks from Capitol Hill.
“Rather than testifying in the House and being accountable for carrying out the Obama-EPA’s ‘crucify them’ agenda, it appears Mr. Armendariz may have had a job interview with the Sierra Club,” Inhofe told National Journal . “With such an impressive job-killing resume, it would be no surprise if the Sierra Club is recruiting him for their ‘Beyond Gas’ campaign designed to ‘prevent any new gas plants from being built’ and to end natural gas production in this country.”
It shows what cowards many at EPA are – rather than defend their indefensible behavior before the publicly-elected officials they are accountable to, they instead decry how “tough” it is in Washington to face a “political climate” that refuses to go along with their extreme agenda. At the same time they eagerly pop out at photo-ops with their environmentalist homeys who show up at their offices to shower love upon them. It’s pretty sickening.
Paul Chesser is an associate fellow for the National Legal and Policy Center.

Pelosi: Obamacare Is ‘A Right’


CNSNews ^




(CNSNews.com) - House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) said at her Thursday press briefing that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act—AKA Obamacre—is not a privilege but “a right.”
At the same time, Pelosi also said Social Security and Medicare are rights.

Key elements of Obamacare include a provision requiring all individuals to purchase government-approved health-care plans, taxpayer-funded transfer payments to finance the purchase of health-care plans by individuals and families who earn less than 400 percent of the federal poverty level, and a regulation that requires all health-care plans to cover, without any fees or co-pay, sterilizations, contraceptives and abortifacients for all women with “reproductive capacity."

A majority of the nation’s state governments challenged Obamacare in federal court, arguing that the federal government does not have the constitutional authority to force individuals to purchase health insurance. The Supreme Court is expected to rule on these challenges by the end of this month.

Pelosi made her statement that Obamacare is a “right” in response to a reporter who asked her about a CBS News/New York Times poll that showed 41 percent of Americans want the Supreme Court to overturn the law in its entirety while another 27 percent want the Supreme Court to throw out the individual mandate and keep the rest of the law.

“Why do you think that is and what does that say in terms of the chance that the Supreme Court will strike it down?” the reporter asked Pelosi.

(Excerpt) Read more at cnsnews.com ...

Obama blames GOP Congress for slowing economy, Romney fires back!


Published June 08, 2012FoxNews.com

  • June 8, 2012: President Barack Obama leaves after speaking about the economy in the White House briefing room. (AP)
Facing a slew of economic bad news, President Obama said Friday the private sector is doing just fine but blamed Republicans for not helping out-of-work teachers and other public-sector employees – an analysis pounced on by GOP leaders.

“The private sector is doing fine,” the president said during a White House press conference. “Where we're seeing weaknesses in our economy have to do with state and local government. … If Republicans want to be helpful, if they really want to move forward and put people back to work, what they should be thinking about is how do we help state and local governments.”

GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney responded within minutes from a campaign stop in Council Bluffs, Iowa.

“He said the private sector is doing fine,” Romney said. “Is he really that out of touch? I think he’s defining what it means to be detached and out of touch with the American people. Has there ever been an American president who is so far from reality as to believe in an America where 23 million Americans are out of work.”

The president’s statements mark at least the second time he has turned the focus on Congress since a Labor Department report released a week ago showed the U.S. jobless rate increased in May from 8.1 percent to 8.2 percent, amid a string of recent downbeat economic reports.

“The president must be on another planet,” Sen. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., told Fox News. “You saw job figures last Friday, completely disconnected from reality.”
Obama thanked Congress for passing the payroll tax cuts in his proposal but urged them to reconsider tax breaks to small businesses that hire and his plan to help homeowners take advantage or historically low mortgage rates.
“If you don’t pass (legislation) during an election year, you should explain to the American people,” Obama said.
He also said his administration is not responsible for recent national security leaks and has “zero tolerance” for such actions.
“The notion that my White House would purposely release national security information is offensive,” he said. “It’s wrong. … We don’t play with that.”
The president began his roughly 10-minute speech, followed by questions from reporters, by urging European leaders to handle the region’s debt crisis to avoid a recession that would further hurt the U.S., its largest trading partner.
Obama's tone was markedly different when it came to European leaders, whom he prodded to inject money into the banking system. He also said it is in "everybody's interest for Greece to remain in the eurozone," despite the division of public opinion inside the country where austerity measures have been imposed to deal with out-of-control deficits.
"The Greek people also need to recognize that their hardships will likely be worse if they choose to exit from the eurozone," Obama said. "The solutions to these problems are hard, but there are solutions," he said.
The president spoke as new signs that the European debt crisis was hurting the U.S. economy.
The president's attack on Republicans was part of his campaign playbook in an election in which the economy is the top issue. Romney is campaigning for the White House as better equipped to created jobs, and polls make the race a close one, with only about a dozen battleground states in dispute.


The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/06/08/obama-tells-congress-european-leaders-to-improve-economy-avert-crisis/#ixzz1xE5c1I6t

ERIC HOLDER DUCKS CONGRESS’S QUESTIONS ABOUT MASSIVE TERRORISM FINANCING TRIAL


The Blaze ^ | 7 June 2012 | Jason Howerton



Members of the House Judiciary Committee on oversight on Thursday called on U.S. Attorney General to provide documents and evidence relating to the landmark Holy Land Foundation trial – the largest terrorism financing trial in U.S. history.


The committee made a nearly identical request more than a year ago, however, the documents were never made available by Holder or his department, lawmakers say.


Following court proceedings, the Holy Land Foundation was found guilty of providing millions of dollars in funding to Hamas and other Islamic terrorist organizations in 2008. Named as “unindicted co-conspirators” in the trial were the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA). Both have documented ties to the radical Muslim Brotherhood…which then have ties to the Obama administration

(Excerpt) Read more at theblaze.com ...

Holder Doubles Down: Senior DOJ Officials Knew Nothing About Fast and Furious Tactics!


Townhall.com ^ | June 8, 2012 | Katie Pavlich



Capitol Hill- It was another tense hearing for Attorney General Eric Holder on Capitol Hill where he testified before the House Judiciary Committee about Justice Department Oversight today. Holder was asked about and covered a variety of topics, but his personal role and those of his senior Justice Department officials in the lethal Fast and Furious operation were front and center.

Chairman Lamar Smith opened his remarks with Fast and Furious, saying the Department of Justice has not provided enough information about the operation that has left hundreds dead in Mexico and at least one U.S. federal agent, Brian Terry, dead. Smith berated the Justice Department for its failure to comply with Congressional subpoenas that “may shed light on why this program was authorized and who had knowledge of the inappropriate tactics.”

Holder, in his own opening remarks, reiterated his “commitment to working with Congressional leaders.” He also stated that his Justice Department orchestrated “a series of coordinated strikes against violent drug cartels,” while working alongside counterparts in Mexico. However, in the case of Operation Fast and Furious, the Mexican government and ATF agents working in Mexico throughout 2010 were left in the dark about the program, as DOJ sanctioned the sales of thousands of AK-47s and .50 caliber rifles, allowing them to be trafficked across the southern border.

Earlier this week, Chairman of the House Oversight Committee Darrell Issa, who also sits on the House Judiciary Committee, sent Holder a letter about six Fast and Furious wiretap applications dated 2010 that were approved by his Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer and Deputy Assistant Attorney General Jason Weinstein. Both Holder and Breuer have said under oath they knew nothing about the program until the beginning of 2011, after Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was killed. Breuer is the second in command behind Holder at the Justice Department. Today, Holder again doubled down on the recurring defense that senior officials within his Justice Department knew nothing of the gunwalking tactics.

“Fast and Furious was a mid-level, regional investigation,” Holder said. “Mr. Weinstein and Mr. Breuer did not know about the tactics being used in Fast and Furious until the beginning of last year.”

When asked about whether his senior officials in the Justice Department had simply read the wiretap applications, Holder responded by saying his top officials did not read the affidavits and the details of what was in the Fast and Furious wiretaps while trying to talk his way around the questions asked.

“Mr. Attorney General, you are not a good witness. Good witnesses answer the question,” Issa said.

As a refresher, in order to apply for and have a wiretap approved, agents must submit extremely detailed information about a case.

“A reasonable person would only come to the conclusion that senior members of the department of Justice knew about gunwalking tactics in Fast and Furious,” Rep. Jason Chaffetz said.

Chaffetz invited Holder to sit down with himself, Rep. Trey Gowdy and two Democratic Reps. to further discuss Fast and Furious. Holder declined the invitation saying, “With all due respect, I give you four hours a crack,” adding that he has testified about Fast and Furious eight times before Congress.

President Obama’s White House was also under scrutiny about Operation Fast and Furious today, after all, in March 2011 President Obama discussed Eric Holder’s knowledge about Fast and Furious. The problem is, Holder admitted in May 2011 to only knowing about Fast and Furious for “a few weeks.” Holder said today he did not personally brief the White House at any time about the program, especially before December 2010, when Terry was killed.

"How would the White House know about Fast and Furious if they didn't hear it from you?” Chairman Smith asked.

Holder responded by saying the White House would have been informed about Fast and Furious by his staffers. He was then asked if there was any collaboration between the Justice Department and the White House on Fast and Furious messaging. Holder didn’t deny the White House connection and said the DOJ was working with the White House to “get the facts out” about this case.

Obama's Deepening Hole


Townhall.com ^ | June 8, 2012 | Hugh Hewitt



A raft of new polls underscore the political free fall Barack Obama finds himself in.

As an incumbent president matched against a nominee from the other party who survived a grueling primary season, Obama should be rolling in dough and enjoying a double-digit lead nationally and healthy head-starts in the key battleground states.

Instead he finds himself in a statistical tie in state after state, including the reliably blue states of Michigan, Iowa, Colorado, Nevada.

When it comes to campaign contributions, Mitt Romney outraised the president by $17 million in May!
And of course Wisconsin voted overwhelmingly to back its reformist governor Scott Walker.
Every day brings another Obama pratfall or embarrassing moment, including the off-color joke that stuns most people who hear it.
What is hurting the president most, however, is the dismal economic news about job creation and the growing sense that only Romney has a plan to re-ignite the engines fo American capitalism.
In his new book Our Divided Political Heart, E.J. Dionne does the best job a lefty can of defending the president, but as our conversation on air Thursday showed, Dionne is trying to make a square a circle and to announce that 2+2 = job growth under Obama. (The transcript of that interview is here)
The president’s record –the facts of his time in office—are just overwhelmingly bad. And he has no plan beyond a tax hike on millionaires that doesn’t raise a fraction of the revenue necessary to remedy the deficit much less the debt.
This is the president’s dilemma: He has no record to run on. None. Even the repeated references to the death of bin Laden have begun to rub the public the wrong way as they step on the admiration owed to the men who took the risks and actually dispatched the terrorist.
Time’s Mark Halperin reports that Republicans now believe that Romney can win and Democrats now believe that Obama can lose. By this Halperin means the Beltway elites who have never been ahead of a single story about the president they collectively revere.
If they now get it, imagine just how deep the political hole is that the president finds himself in.
The “first rule of holes” is “stop digging.” The president hasn’t. The president won’t. And the hole keeps getting deeper, not just for him, but for America.

Liberals Recruit More People Onto Food Stamps, Even As Unemployment Rate Falls


Boston Herald ^ | June 8, 2012 | Michael Graham



It’s a Massachusetts Rorschach test.

In 2009, the state unemployment rate peaked at 8.7 percent. It’s now down to 6.3 percent — a 28 percent drop. Meanwhile the number of Bay Staters on food stamps has jumped from 720,000 to more than 850,000, a 15 percent increase.
Here’s the test question: Is that a good thing, or bad?
Look, the economy still stinks, but it doesn’t stink as bad as it did in 2008-2009. And yet, from 2007 to 2011, spending on food stamps went up an astonishing 135 percent.
And it’s still going up.
How does this make sense? Shouldn’t “more jobs” equal “less welfare?”
It turns out, that’s all part of the plan.
Both the federal government and the Patrick administration have been spending your money to recruit more non-traditional “clients” to become dependent on . . . your money!
As James Bovard reported in The Wall Street Journal, “Thanks in part to vigorous federally funded campaigns by nonprofit groups, the government’s AmeriCorps service program, and other organizations urging people to accept government handouts, the number of food-stamp recipients has soared.”
Then Department of Transitional Assistance chief Julia Kehoe told the Dorchester Reporter last year, “The department reached out specifically to groups who had been under-represented in past years: the elderly, those who were unaware of their eligibility, and people who viewed the program as too burdensome to apply for.”
Notice who’s not on the list: the hungry, the destitute and the folks who’ve run out of options.
No, those folks have been on food stamps all along, which is in the minds of most Americans why the program exists. But once you’ve maxed those folks out, how do you keep growing your government program?
By expanding it to...
(Excerpt) Read more at bostonherald.com ...

What Wisconsin means


Washington Post ^ | June 7,2012 | Charles Krauthammer



It was predictable. In Indiana, where Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) instituted by executive order a similar reform seven years ago, government-worker unions have since lost 91 percent of their dues-paying membership. In Wisconsin, Democratic and union bosses (a redundancy) understood what was at stake if Walker prevailed: not benefits, not “rights,” but the very existence of the unions.

So they fought and they lost. Repeatedly. Tuesday was their third and last shot at reversing Walker’s reforms. In April 2011, they ran a candidate for chief justice of the state Supreme Court who was widely expected to strike down the law. She lost.

In July and August 2011, they ran recall elections of state senators, needing three to reclaim Democratic — i.e., union — control. They failed. (The likely flipping of one Senate seat to the Democrats on June 5 is insignificant. The Senate is not in session and won’t be until after yet another round of elections in November.)
And then, Tuesday, their Waterloo. Walker defeated their gubernatorial candidate by a wider margin than he had — pre-reform — two years ago.
Most important, however, because in the end reality prevails. As economist Herb Stein once put it: Something that can’t go on, won’t. These public-sector unions, acting, as FDR had feared, with an inherent conflict of interest regarding their own duties, were devouring the institution they were supposed to serve, rendering state government as economically unsustainable as the collapsing entitlement states of southern Europe.
It couldn’t go on. Now it won’t. All that was missing was a political leader willing to risk his career to make it stop. Because, time being infinite, even the inevitable doesn’t happen on its own.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...

Former ACORN Director Gets $445 MILLION From US Government


Jim Hoft


ACORN was the largest radical leftist group in America before controversy forced the discredited community organizing group to disband. This radical group worked closely with the Obama camp during the 2008 election but was not open about the relationship. The photo below was scrubbed from the ACORN website before the election:

One of Barack Obama’s first big “community organizer” jobs involved ACORN in 1992. He worked along side ACORN before he became an elected official. Obama also trained ACORN employees. He represented ACORN in court. Obama worked with and protested with ACORN. His campaign donated $800,000 to ACORN in 2008 for voter registration efforts.

And, ACORN even canvassed for Obama in 2008.
In 2009 Obama promoted a top ACORN operative, Patrick Gaspard, whose organization was fined $775,000 for election violations, to a top post in the White House. Gaspard is helping shape domestic policy today.
Barack Obama was not honest about his relationship with ACORN during the 2008 election.
In 2009 Congress voted to defund ACORN and its affiliates. But that didn’t stop the Obama Administration from giving $560,000 to ACORN affiliates in 2010. Obama may not know economics. His foreign policy is a disaster. He makes a horrible leader. But, he knows community organizing.
Now this…
The Obama Administration has given a former ACORN official nearly HALF A BILLION DOLLARS after leaving the corrupt far left group......
(Excerpt) Read more at thegatewaypundit.com ...

Frustrated liberals want more from Obama


FOX ^ | Associated Press

They are trying to be hopeful, but the Democratic Party's most passionate voters are struggling to hide their frustration with President Barack Obama.

Republicans may attack the president as a big-government liberal, but many liberals meeting Thursday at Netroots Nation -- an annual convention likened to "a giant family reunion for the left" -- argue that Obama hasn't fought hard enough for progressive priorities on taxes, health care and the economy. Even more problematic for the president is this: With the election just five months away, some are threatening not to donate money or time or even vote in November for the man who overwhelmingly ignited their passions and captured their imaginations four years ago.

"I want to be happy with him," said Democrat Kristine Vaughan, a 45-year-old school psychologist from Canton, Ohio. "But I am finding that he has succumbed to the corporate influence as much as everyone else. I think he has so much potential to break out of that, but overall he has been a disappointment."
Vaughan isn't sure whether she'll vote for Obama a second time and probably won't donate money as she did during his first campaign. She refuses to support Republican challenger Mitt Romney, but is considering writing in another candidate in protest.

(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...

The Bell Tolls for the Government Unions


Townhall.com ^ | June 8, 2012 | Pat Buchanan



In 1919, after Boston police went on strike to protest the city's refusal to recognize their new union, Gov. Calvin Coolidge ordered the National Guard into the streets.
Sam Gompers, the legendary father of American labor, wrote the governor that the Boston police had been denied their rights.
Coolidge's terse reply put him in our history books:
"Your assertion that the Commissioner was wrong cannot justify the wrong of leaving the city unguarded. ... There is no right to strike against the public safety by anyone, anywhere, any time."
Ronald Reagan's firing of the striking air traffic controllers, whose union had been among the few to endorse him, marked him as a leader willing to act against a powerful union if the public interest commands it.
Gov. Scott Walker is now in that tradition. He has just routed a recall campaign that began with state senators disgracefully fleeing to Illinois rather than provide a quorum and mobs occupying his capitol.
Walter's victory is a fire bell in the night for the public-sector unions. It reflects a rising realization among all Western peoples that to continue accommodating the demands of government unions is to risk our survival as free and prosperous nations.
The Badger State rout of Big Labor was total.
The public-employee unions first capitulated to the governor's demand that they contribute more to their pensions and health care benefits. But they drew the line at Walker's determination to curtail collective bargaining and to cease deducting union dues from the paychecks of state workers.
Collect your dues yourself, the governor was telling the unions.
With their union dues no longer taken out of their paychecks, tens of thousands of Wisconsin public employees refused to pony up those dues and quit their union, instead. What does this tell us?
Many union members do not believe they get their money's worth from unions that claim to represent them, and would prefer to get out of the union and keep the dues money themselves.
This desertion by their members represents a massive vote of no confidence in unions like the America Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, the Service Employees International Union and the American Federation of Teachers. AFSCME in Wisconsin lost 34,000 of its 62,000 members last year alone.
From the Wisconsin experience, if right-to-work laws were enacted in every state, giving employees freedom to join or leave a union, public-employee unions would be abandoned, reduced to shadows of what they are today. What does it say about a union if its members would prefer not to belong, if they were free to leave?
The curtailment of collective bargaining is the issue on which Walker appeared to be on the weakest ground, as school kids are taught that collective bargaining is a sacrosanct right.
Yet here, too, the governor has a compelling argument.
When union leaders put piles of cash into political campaigns, and union bosses then sit down to bargain with the people they have just put into office, who represents the public?
Is there not an inherent conflict of interest when unions literally purchase with campaign contributions the election of officials with whom they are to negotiate the new contracts for their members?
There are other reasons public-employee unions are losing public support. The pay and benefits of federal employees are twice that of the average private-sector worker, while the pay and benefits of state employees are half again as high. And government workers enjoy a job security few private-sector workers ever know.
Unionized government workers are seen by almost no one as victims. Yet their numbers are huge.
Where there were twice as many Americans working in manufacturing as in government in 1960, today the reverse is true. We have 22 million workers in government and 11 million in manufacturing.
This is an immense and costly army for taxpayers to sustain.
Even Democrats, though they howl that we must milk the rich more, are starting to concede that the government sector, now at a peacetime record 37 percent of the gross domestic product, must be pared back.
The salad days of the government employee are coming to an end, as they have already in Greece, Italy and Spain.
As Europe went farther down that "road to socialism" than did we, the pain there will be greater. But it is coming here, too.
Already, states and cities have begun cutting their labor force. And the states that were most indulgent in providing pay and benefits their taxpayers could not afford are the states being hit hardest, like Barack Obama's Illinois and Jerry Brown's California.
The anger and accusations of union leaders, directed at Gov. Walker, testify to their shocked awareness of the new political realities.
And Obama's conspicuous absence from the battlefield -- he sent a tweet and did a flyover -- testifies to his recognition that while government unions may be his loyal political allies, they are also an albatross hanging around his neck this November.

Singers defend national anthem after radio host calls it an ‘abomination’



  • ace young diana degarmo proposal 660.jpg
    Ace Young proposes to fellow 'Idol' alum Diana DeGarmo. (Reuters)
Oh say can you sing? (idiot) Bill Press doesn’t seem to think so.

The talk show host started a major controversy on his radio show this week when he hit the airwaves and announced to listeners that the American national anthem, a.k.a. “The Star- Spangled Banner,” is “stupid” and “un-singable.”

“It’s an abomination… First of all, it ranges two octaves; most people can only do, kind of, one octave,” said Press. “It’s more than a pet peeve. It is a major crusade of mine. A major cause of mine and that is, to get rid of ‘The Star-Spangled Banner.’”

While Press seems to think the song is an “embarrassment” to our country, singers including an “American Idol” finalist and an Operatic tenor, who also happens to be a former police officer who sang at Ground Zero, disagree.
“The ‘Star-Spangled Banner’ is most definitely singable. It’s a beautiful song. It talks about the strife our country went through to gain its independence...It’s a statement of pride. To say it’s an ‘abomination’ is shocking to us who are more patriotic,” said former NYPD officer Daniel Rodriguez, otherwise known as the “Singing Policeman," who captured the hearts of America with his stirring rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner” at the first Yankees baseball game post 9/11.

"Maybe [Bill Press] never read more than the first paragraph of the poem?”
- Daniel Rodriguez

“I was at Ground Zero when the [Twin Towers] came down. At that Yankee game, I felt the pride of our country," Rodriguez told FOX411.com. "I couldn’t even hear myself because people were screaming with tears when I started singing 'And the rockets’ red glare.' It was triumphant.”
However, unlike Rodriguez, who received an offer to be personally trained by Placido Domingo after his chilling performance, some singers have indeed struggled with the song. In 2011, Christina Aguilera notoriously botched the lyrics at the Super Bowl XLV. Other stars to skip a note or two include Steven Tyler, Jesse McCartney, and Michael Bolton (who used notes scribbled on his hand to guide him through his mediocre performance).
But the trouble some singers have singing the national anthem isn’t reflective of the song itself, Rodriguez says. It’s more about the singer.
“It’s not that of a big a deal. It should be in the range of any singer," he said.
As for the song’s lyrics, which Press called “stupid,” they originated from an1814 Francis Scott Key poem that was written during the Battle of Fort McHenry. Once set to music, the patriotic poem became widely popular, so popular that President Woodrow Wilson made it our national anthem in 1916. Since then, “The Star-Spangled Banner” has become a part of Americana, being sung at every major sporting event, a kind of badge for those who get to sing it.
“I remember the first time I sang it as a kid for the Colorado Rockies baseball game," said “American Idol” finalist Ace Young. "It was amazing to hear 60,000 people sing it with me. I had chills.”
“We have amazing troops fighting hard so that we are truly a free nation, and I am proud and honored to sing it every time I am asked,” Young said.
Indeed Whitney Houston’s performance at the Super Bowl XXV in 1991 was a defining moment in her career. Her iconic rendition was released as a single and went on to be regarded as one of her finest artistic achievements.
For Rodriguez, who will be starring in the Chelsea Opera’s production of Madame Butterfly this weekend, the national anthem is an attainable song, especially if you know your limits and don’t try to fluff it up.
"Singers usually pick a key that’s a little too high. It should be started low," he said.
And whether sung off-key or not, Rodriguez thinks the song itself is deeply rooted with meaning, and should be sung by all those who believe in this country.
“The song itself is powerful," he said. "Maybe [Bill Press] never read more than the first paragraph of the poem?”


Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2012/06/08/singers-defend-national-anthem-after-radio-host-calls-it-abomination/?intcmp=features#ixzz1xDEHambJ

Five Lessons America Can Learn From The Failures Of Other Nation-States!


Townhall.com ^ | June 8, 2012 | John Hawkins



As Ronald Reagan noted,
Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.
That's true of freedom, but it's also true of values, wealth, power, and influence. There's absolutely no guarantee that future generations of Americans will grow up in a prosperous, free super power as we have. In fact, it's entirely possible that America could be a terrible place to live a few decades from now. Of course, that doesn't have to be our future either. If we are smart enough to learn from other nations’ mistakes, we can avoid their fates.
1) The Soviet Union: In the sixties and seventies, many economists believed the Soviet Union had an economy that was superior to ours. In fact, when Reagan came into office, many economists still expected the Soviet Union to eventually surpass America economically. Reagan knew better and realized he could break the Soviet Union economically. He dramatically ramped up American military spending because he knew that the Soviets couldn't afford to keep up with us. Reagan also convinced Saudi Arabia to help reduce the price of oil, which sliced into Soviet revenues, told Europe not to buy more oil or natural gas from the Soviets than absolutely necessary, and helped enmesh the Soviets in an expensive war in Afghanistan. Then Gorbachev, in an effort to save the Soviet Union, started giving the people more economic and political freedom, which spiraled out of control and led to the downfall of the Evil Empire.
Today, America is relying on nations that don't have our best interests at heart to provide us with the oil we need to power our economy and to buy our debt. Could America handle another seventies-style OPEC oil embargo? Could we deal with an organized effort to convince other nations not to buy our debt? Imagine going another half a trillion dollars deeper in the hole every year just to finance our debt. How long do you think we could keep that up, especially on top of the out-of-control spending we already have?
2) Greece: The Greeks embraced the same sort of European socialist model that the Democratic Party is in love with. They have powerful unions, early retirements, a massive government, and high taxes.
They also have bankruptcy and soon, default.
Greece has been kept from defaulting on its debts thus far solely by infusions of cash from more responsible nations. This option, which likely wouldn't even be open to the United States because we're so much bigger than Greece, has come at a terrible price. Nobody wants to throw good money after bad; so in return for giving Greece cash they can't borrow on the free market, the Greeks have been required to cut into their deficits. We’ve heard a lot about "austerity," but Greece is still running a large deficit despite the fact that it has slashed pensions and life saving drugs are becoming hard to find. Instead of cutting government and spending all the way to the bone, the Greeks have tried to make up their shortfall by raising taxes, which has further depressed their moribund economy.
Make no mistake about it: unless America makes some dramatic changes, we are headed towards the same fate as Greece. Once a nation gets into a position where it has trouble getting loans, has great difficulty paying its day-to-day bills, and has to beg for cash, there are no good options remaining. There's nothing but misery and pain for a long, long time and a greatly reduced standard of living once the worst of the suffering is over.
3) Italy: Italy is also struggling to pay its bills and eventually it is likely to fail for a simple reason: There are just not enough young Italians being born.
"(T)he state needs a birth rate of 2.1 children to maintain a stable population. In Italy, it's now 1.2. Twenty years ago, a million babies were born there each year. Now it's half a million. And the fewer babies you have today, the fewer babies are around to have babies in 20 years. Once you're as far down the death spiral as Italy is, it's hard to reverse. "
Italy has generous entitlement programs that rely on young workers to pay the bills, but there is such a shortage of Italian youths that the programs are becoming unsustainable. Given Italy's poor economy, horrible debt situation, and hostility to foreign workers, the country is not even a particularly attractive destination for immigrants. So, how will this end for Italy? Badly.
We here in the United States have a birth rate of just around the replacement level of 2.1, which is good. However, because of the Baby Boomer population bubble, we don't have enough young people to pay for our entitlement programs either. Additionally, although we're an attractive destination for immigrants, we don't take advantage of it. We have a family-based immigration system instead of a system centered around getting the best and brightest immigrants. In a nation where almost 50% of the population pays no income tax, how much sense does it make to bring in manual laborers and janitors as American citizens because they're related to someone who's already here as opposed to bringing in rocket scientists, engineers, and entrepreneurs who would actually add to the tax base? We're refusing to take advantage of a great opportunity without realizing that one day that door may close. We may no longer be the top destination for immigrants in the world and we may not be able to bring in the same quality of new American citizens again.

4) Sierra Leone: Sadly, most countries on the planet have "extractive" economies. That means a few people get rich, most people stay poor, and governing tends to primarily be about securing wealth and power for a few people at the expense of the many. Oftentimes in nations like this, politicians will make decisions that seem bizarre to Western eyes. In 1961, Sierra Leone gained independence from the British. Since the country had natural resources galore and burgeoning coffee, cocoa, and diamond exports, the potential was there for the country to take off economically. Unfortunately, after winning an election in 1967, Siaka Stevens became a dictator and deliberately destroyed the railroad that was taking those exports to market. Economically, the country was terribly damaged by his decision, but it had the effect of weakening his political enemies and allowing him to consolidate power. Today, Sierra Leone is wretchedly poor and still recovering from a nearly decade long civil war.
The sad fact of the matter is that we do have similar policies to these here in America, but on a lesser scale. For example, Scott Walker just faced a recall election in Wisconsin because of policies that turned a 3.6 billion dollar deficit into a surplus. His policies also allowed property taxes to be reduced for the first time in 12 years, but to do that, the Democrats' union allies had to take a small haircut. All across America at the state and local level, there are towns and cities running massive deficits in order to funnel huge sums to the unions. Similarly, our legal system has been drawn up in a way to create as many lawsuits as possible in order to benefit trial lawyers. Hundreds of billions of dollars are wasted on endless paperwork and lawsuits in order to cater to environmental groups that won't be happy unless everyone is living in grass huts. The more political spoils we toss to these groups, the more it weakens our economy and hurts everyone else.
5) The Roman Empire: If you ask why the Roman Empire fell, you'll hear a lot of different theories: lead poisoning, moral degradation, high taxes, corruption, a failing economy -- it goes on and on. However, the direct cause of the fall of the Western Roman Empire was its failure to assimilate barbarian tribes. The Romans believed in spreading their culture and so, barbarians had always been allowed to become Roman citizens. They were also used in increasing numbers in the Roman military. However, the Roman practice was to split the barbarians up and send them to different areas so that they could be incorporated into the culture instead of retaining loyalty to their tribe. The time came, however, when this practice was stopped. We don't know for sure if they didn't have the troops, lacked the will, or just no longer thought it was necessary.
Unfortunately, what happened as a result was that Visigoths and Vandals (among others) who were driven into Roman territory by the Huns were allowed to stay together as tribes, in Roman territory. They kept their loyalty to their own people and never became Romans in any meaningful sense. They bided their time and eventually rampaged through the western half of the Roman Empire, sacked Rome, and put an end to the Western Roman Empire.
Here in the United States, we have more than 10 million illegal immigrants in our country whose first loyalty is not to the United States. Does that mean they're going to tear through the countryside and sack D.C.? Probably not, but there is a danger in having a large, uncontrolled alien population inside our borders. Does the flood of illegal aliens on our southern border make it much easier for criminals, drug dealers, and terrorists to get into our country? Unquestionably. Could we one day see large numbers of Mexican illegal immigrants who believe that the southwestern United States rightfully belongs to their people start to engage in organized terroristic violence against American citizens? Absolutely. Some people might say, "That's unthinkable," but that's probably also what most Romans would have said if you had asked them if the Visigoths might pillage Rome one day.

NBC TO VOTERS - BLAME EUROPE, NOT OBAMA!


NBC Today SHOW ^ | 06-08-2012 | cww



New NBC Meme -- Goood news -- The horrible economy and unemployment rate are not the fault of Obama or his policies. It's Europe's fault -- totally!


This morning on the NBC Today Show, they trotted out their own on air "Talent", Jim Cramer of MAD Money, to tell us all that the bad economy has nothing to do with our government or its policies. Instead, we are totally beholden to Europe. Well excuse me, but when did former hedge fund manager Jim Cramer become a global economist? You could almost see the Obama bumper sticker on his shiny forhead!
And I'm not saying that the European economy and soverign debt crisis is not hurting the US -- it is. But Cramer completely relieved Obama and the administration of all responsibility. Well, hell, Jim --why not call it a day and send everyone home from D.C. if their efforts are futile! (actually, that's not such a bad idea!)

I have an idea, Mr. Cramer. Trying picking up the phone and calling the first 10 small business owners listed in your local Chamber of Commerce Facebook and ask them how Obama's policies are affecting small businesses. Ask them if they are hiring this year. Ask them what their tax and healthcare liabilities will be in 2013. Ask them how regulations are affecting thier companies. Ask them if they have laid off or reduced the hours or salaries of their employees in the past 6 months. Then ask them if it's Europe's fault.

And after you get their response, call your physician and set up an appointment to reverse that Obama worshipping rectal-cranial transplant.BooooooYaaaaaahhhh!

Why Do We Elect People Who So Clearly Lack Character?


American Thinker ^ | 06/08/2012 | Patricia McCarthy



By now, nearly everyone paying attention knows that Barack Obama has lied countless times over the years in order to further his academic and political career. He is, in fact, a "composite." And what we do know is just a hint of what there is yet to know, given that all his academic records are sealed.
Our president lied about his mother's lack of health insurance. He lied about his father's early life. His publisher's brochure described him as "born in Kenya" for years, until he began running for president. There are countless other examples of his prevarications that fluff out his phony résumé. It is almost certain that he did not write Dreams from My Father by himself and that his relationship with Jeremiah Wright was cultivated to serve his political future...until it didn't. And now, even Michelle is unable to keep the fabricated facts of her husband's life straight.
And then there is Elizabeth Warren, the darling of the Boston/Harvard left, the self-described Cherokee without a shred of evidence to prove her claims of Native American heritage. Her claim made her a diversity hire at two prestigious schools. She even submitted a couple of recipes to a Native American cookbook, Pow Wow Chow, that she borrowed from Pierre Frainey. She chose those recipes poorly; Oklahoma Cherokees probably did not dine on cold omelets with crabmeat!
Bill Clinton's moral lapses and crimes against women are legendary and too numerous to list, yet he still has adoring fans who would vote for him in a minute if he was on a ballot -- any ballot. Hillary does not score much better on the truth and morality scale: Whitewater, managing her husband's "bimbo eruptions," her fabricated helicopter landing in Bosnia amid sniper fire, etc.
(Excerpt) Read more at americanthinker.com ...

Let's keep our momentum going - all aboard to our next big battle!


Tea Party Express



If you feel like we do, you are still buzzing from our historic victory in Wisconsin and can feel that we have momentum on our side!

While we have a full head of steam, we must re-focus this tremendous energy on our next big battle - the runoff election for U.S. Senate in Texas between Tea Party conservative Ted Cruz and moderate Republican establishment candidate David Dewhurst.
Tea Party Express endorsed and conservative Texas U.S. Senate candidate Ted Cruz was successful in holding David Dewhurst under 50% of the vote forcing a runoff election between the two on July 31st.


The runoff will be a battle between the moderate establishment Republican vs. the Tea Party conservative.

We hope to build on our new momentum ahead of the runoff, and raise enough money to help the Ted Cruz campaign combat the smear campaign funded by the personal resources of millionaire David Dewhurst.

Dewhurst remains personally wealthy, well-connected and we have no reason to believe that he will let up on the low-blows and lies that we saw from his campaign the last couple of weeks.

We need all Tea Party members to coalesce behind Ted Cruz, as we did behind Wisconsin's Gov. Walker. This is the next great Tea Party battle and we will prove the critics wrong again!

Your passion is why we are where we are today!

This campaign has always been about taking our country back, restoring the Constitution and returning our government to “We, the people.” Now, for the next 2 months, the battle is on. The runoff is July 31, and we need conservatives more united than ever.


In the closing weeks of the campaign, our support surged with the endorsements of Gov. Sarah Palin, Sen. Rick Santorum, Congressman Ron Paul, and Sean Hannity, in addition to the support off Glenn Beck, Mark Levin, Rand Paul, and many others.

We need you to stand with us united in this runoff to defeat career politicians clinging to power. The battle is on, and liberty is at stake.

Ted Cruz speaking at our rally in San Antonio, TX last month
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If you haven't heard about Ted Cruz, here is a little about why we have endorsed him and are fighting to send him to Washington:
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Ted Cruz is a self-professed child of the Reagan revolution. His parents fled Cuba after experiencing an oppressive government and instilled in Ted a profound respect and appreciation for freedom. He understands that it is not our government that makes America run, but our entrepreneurial spirit. He made money as a kid by reciting the Constitution from memory to Rotary Clubs in Texas and giving speeches on free-market economics.
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As Solicitor General of Texas from 2003-2008, Cruz authored 80 U.S. Supreme Court briefs and personally argued 40 oral arguments, including 9 before the Supreme Court. Named “a Republican star rising in Texas” and “a great Reaganite hope” by the National Review, Ted Cruz has led the fight against Obama’s offshore drilling moratorium and for private property rights for Americans. His “Growth and Jobs Agenda” promotes a limited government plan that pledges to repeal ObamaCare and Dodd-Frank, kill Cap and Trade, and dramatically simplify the tax code.

Ted Cruz at the Tea Party Express Endorsement Press Conference in Dallas, Texas

We were honored to travel around the great state of Texas with him last month to endorse his campaign and hope that you will be as excited as we are about his candidacy.

We have a great candidate that we all need to support to send him to Washington!

One of Tea Party Express’ top priorities in 2012 is to elect a conservative majority to the U.S. Senate, and thanks to patriots like Ted Cruz, we are well on our way to doing just that. But we need your support if we are going to be successful and finish the work we all started in 2010.

Donate $25, $50, $100, $250, $500, $1000, or even more! Click here to contribute now!

MAP: The US States That Are Growing And The Ones Being Left Behind


Business Insider ^ | 06/08/2012 | Max Nisen



From the BEA's state by state GDP breakdown for 2011. The dark blue states (highest quintile) are the 10 fastest growing states, the light blue the next 10, and so on.


chart


(Excerpt) Read more at businessinsider.com ...

Fast and Furious: Eric Holder’s bizarre House Judiciary testimony


humanevents.com ^ | 7 June, 2012 | John Hayward



Attorney General Eric Holder attended hearings into Operation Fast and Furious by the House Judiciary committee on Thursday. His testimony brought one major breakthrough: it turns out he doesn’t hate David Axelrod’s guts after all. There have been accounts that Holder nearly came to blows with President Obama’s top political advisor, but Holder told House Judiciary they have a “great relationship,” and he doesn’t think Axelrod has ever “done anything that I would consider inappropriate.”

Whew! Glad we got that out of the way! In other news, U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry is still dead because of Operation Fast and Furious. The Attorney General still maintains he and his top deputies didn’t know anything, can’t remember anything, and have no intention of complying with lawful subpoenas from Congress. Holder acknowledges that he’s only turned over 7,600 of the 140,000 Fast and Furious documents he’s sitting on, and that’s about as good as it’s going to get.
This did not sit well with the clearly exasperated Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), who is chairman of the House Oversight Committee, and the lead House investigator into Operatin Fast and Furious. “You’re not a good witness,” Issa snapped at one point, when Holder made one of his periodic efforts to pretend that coughing up five percent of the required material constitutes fulfillment of his subpoenas. “A good witness answers the question that was asked.”
How about those wiretap applications, smuggled out of Justice by a whistleblower, which prove beyond question that Holder’s inner circle was well aware of “gun walking” tactics, long before Agent Terry’s death? Well, according to the Attorney General, that’s all George Bush’s fault.
Holder claimed that high officials in his department don’t review wiretap applications before signing them – they skim over brief summaries and ignore details not directly related to the request for electronic surveillance. You know, little peripheral matters like the ATF losing hundreds of guns to Mexican drug cartel hit men. “They do not look at the affidavits to see, if in fact… to review all that is engaged… all that is involved in the operation,” the Attorney General explained.
For his part, now that Issa and his whistleblowers have kindly brought the wiretap applications to his attention, Holder has read them in full. “I have read those, and I have read Wide Receiver as well,” he said, referring to the vastly smaller Bush-era gun walking program. “I can say that what has happened in connection with Fast and Furious was done in the same way… wiretap applications were done in the same way under the previous Administration in Wide Receiver.”
Asked when the White House was made aware of the gun walking tactics employed by Operation Fast and Furious, Holder essentially said his staffers briefed the White House but didn’t brief him, so he doesn’t know what anybody said, or when they said it. He allegedly still hasn’t found the time to gather “specifics” about the case, even though he easily made the time to conduct a political seminar for black preachers recently. When Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) demanded to know who authorized Fast and Furious, Holder referred him to the eternally “in progress” internal Justice Department investigation, which is apparently being conducted by Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster. He even said he doesn’t know how many guns have been recovered, or even more appalling, how many are still missing.
Holder also complained about having to keep giving the same non-answers to investigative committees eight times now, moaned about how he feels under “attack,” and of course slipped in a call for more gun-control legislation.
Unbelievably, while he was being read an email from Deputy Assistant Attorney General Jason Weinstein that discussed “gun walking” by Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), Holder said it was actually about the Bush-era Operation Wide Receiver… even though the email actually referred, verbatim, to Fast and Furious.
An astonished Chaffetz said, “The email says Fast and Furious, you say it doesn’t. I’ve got it in black and white.”
“I have superior knowledge,” was Holder’s ultimate response.
There is no question this nonsense would be yielding 24-hour wall-to-wall news coverage from hyperventilating anchors if Holder was a Republican attorney general. He’d already be a staple of late-night comedy routines. Instead, expect a total media blackout of this incredible hearing.
House Democrats, especially Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee of Texas, were happy to aid Holder in covering up his malfeasance by interrupting legitimate questions from the serious members of Congress, in an obvious bid to run out the clock on the Judiciary hearings. It was rather like watching a group of little kids squabble over the rules of a softball game. Except that several hundred people have already been killed by this particular game, so it sure isn’t “softball.”
It is simply impossible to watch this testimony without concluding that Eric Holder is either a dangerous incompetent, or a liar. If what he says is true, his removal from the Justice Department would cause nary a ripple – he’s so disconnected from vital operations that nobody would even notice he was gone. Otherwise, he should be up on charges, most definitely beginning with contempt of Congress.

How Obama Creates Uncertainty and Paralyzes Growth


Reason ^ | 06/08/2012 | John Stossel



President Obama would do us all a big favor if he'd ask himself this: "Would I start or expand a business without knowing what regulations or taxes government will impose next year?"

If he'd just stop and ask that, he'd have a sense of what's wrong with the economy. He'd understand why a country that must create 120,000 new jobs each month just to absorb newcomers created only 69,000 last month.

Past recoveries were quicker. Something is different. What could it be?
Let's remember that the economy -- which is to say, us -- is already burdened by byzantine bureaucratic impositions. Every week, the feds add another thousand pages of rules and proposals for rules. Local governments add their own. My mayor, in New York City, even proposes micromanaging the size of the drinks restaurants may sell.
On top of the existing mountain of red tape, the Obama administration has piled on more, with more to come. Obamacare was less a specific prescription than a license for the Department of Health and Human Services to write new rules, lots of which are yet to be written. No one knows how the bureaucrats will micromanage health insurance.
Then there's Dodd-Frank, the 2,300-page revamp of finance industry regulation. Again, the bill left the rule-writing to regulatory agencies. Who knows what they will come up with?
Every year, Congress makes thousands of changes to tax laws. And no one can guess what will happen in 2013 if the 2001 and 2003 rate cuts expire.
There is an irresistible temptation for politicians to "do something" whenever real or imagined problems appear. The number of on-the-fly programs in recent years (from attacks on unpaid internships to Cash for Clunkers) has been astounding. This uncertainty kills job creation.
(Excerpt) Read more at reason.com ...