Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Huma Abedin and the Muslim Brotherhood: Closely Connected

pjmedia ^ | 24JUL12 | Andrew C. McCarthy

Senator John McCain ought to be embarrassed. So should House Speaker John Boehner and Congressman Mike Rogers, the former FBI agent who chairs the Select Committee on Intelligence.
These pillars of the Republican establishment have been championing the cause of Huma Abedin, the deputy chief of staff to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Ms. Abedin’s name arose, along with several others, in connection with questions pressed by five conservative House Republicans regarding Muslim Brotherhood infiltration of the United States government. The GOP establishment, led by McCain, Boehner, and Rogers, has been slamming Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, one of the five House conservatives, over her refusal to back down from concerns over Ms. Abedin.
Here are four things, among many, that we now know: Advertisement
1. Huma Abedin’s mother, Dr. Saleha S. Mahmood Abedin (hereafter, Saleha Abedin), is an influential member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s division for women, the Muslim Sisterhood. She is also a zealous advocate of sharia law’s oppression of women — which McCain himself condemned in a 2011 interview with Der Spiegel.
2. Not only that: Saleha Abedin is a board member of the International Islamic Council for Dawa and Relief. The IICDR has been long banned in Israel for supporting Hamas. It is also part of the Union for Good, which is a formally designated international terrorist organization under federal law. The Union for Good is led by Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the chief sharia jurist of the Muslim Brotherhood. He is the world’s most influential Islamic cleric, and has issued fatwas endorsing suicide bombings against Israel and terrorist attacks against American forces in Iraq.
(Excerpt) Read more at pjmedia.com ...

Republicans blast Pentagon for allowing military uniforms in gay pride parade

The Hill ^ | July 24, 2012 | Jeremy Herb

Republican lawmakers are blasting the Pentagon's decision to allow troops to march in uniform at a San Diego gay pride parade last week.

Two senior Republicans on the House and Senate Armed Services committees said Tuesday that the Pentagon was out of line to grant the one-time exemption that allowed military uniforms in the parade.

Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.) said the Pentagon made a “dangerous exception” to its policy of not allowing military uniforms in parades. In a statement, the Armed Forces Readiness subcommittee chairman said that the decision was a made to advance the Obama administration’s social agenda.
“I am calling on the DOD to halt these dangerous exceptions to policy for political purposes. This decision was an outrageous and blatantly political determination issued solely to advance this Administration’s social agenda,” Forbes said in a statement Tuesday.
“Sadly, this is yet another violation in what has become a pattern of this Administration’s assault on the longstanding history of the Department of Defense as a nonpolitical organization,” he said.
Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) wrote a letter to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta asking for an explanation behind making the exemption in light of the military's "unambiguous regulations" to preserve its apolitical stance.
"If the Navy can punish a Chaplain for participating in a pro-life event or a Marine participating in a political rally, it stands to reason that DOD should maintain the same standard and preclude service members in uniform from marching in a gay pride parade," Inhofe said. "I respectfully request a detailed explanation of the rational you used to grant this ‘one time waiver’ of DOD policy, who requested the waiver, why this waiver was considered justified over other requests, and whether you are considering other exceptions to current policy.”
Both Inhofe and Forbes said that the Pentagon’s decision to allow the service members to participate in the parade in uniform was in clear violation of Defense Department rules on participating in political activities while in uniform.
Forbes pointed to a press release from San Diego LGBT Pride that said the inclusion of military uniforms was helping celebrate the “growing list of states with marriage equality.”
The Pentagon said last week that it was allowing an exemption for military personnel to wear their uniforms at the San Diego gay pride parade but that the exemption only covered that parade and not future ones.

Obama Crosses Picket Line - Hotel Mogul Pritzker Gets Ride on Air Force One as Unions Launch!

Free Beacon ^ | 7/24/12 | staff

Penny Pritzker, the billionaire heiress whose family owns the Hyatt hotel chain, took a ride on Air Force One this afternoon from San Francisco to Portland, Ore., where President Obama was making a series of fundraising stops.

The ride came hours after the announcement of a global boycott of Hyatt Hotels by Unite Here, the nation’s largest hospitality workers union. That boycott has been joined by the National Organization for Women, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, the National Black Justice Center, and the National Football League Players Association.

Pritzker was the national finance chair of Obama’s 2008 campaign. However, in 2012, despite raising a million dollars for Obama, Pritzker has stepped into a “backstage” role according to a recent front-page profile in the New York Times.

The New York Times reported:

For Ms. Pritzker, her high-profile backing of Mr. Obama came at an unexpectedly bitter cost. Their relationship made her a punching bag for the labor movement, which targeted her for what union officials call exploitative practices toward housekeepers by the Hyatt hotels.

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

Obama Hasn't Received His Daily Economic Briefing Since April 2011

The Lid ^ | July 24, 2012

Something is missing. If you look at Barack Obama's calendar for 26th of April, 2011 you will see on his schedule at 10 AM "The President receives the Economic Daily Briefing," after that nothing. According to the daily schedule released by the White House, Barack Obama hasn't received his "daily" economic briefing for the past 15 months (The White House, Accessed 7/23/12).

Jay Carney was asked about it last June:

Q: Just a quick follow-up. I feel like I missed this over the course of the last few months --I might have been on vacation or something --but when did the President stop doing the daily presidential economic daily briefing? MR. CARNEY: I think it happens periodically --
Q: But it used to be a daily thing with the PDB. I’m just curious when it stopped being a daily thing.
MR. CARNEY: I’ll have to go check. Again, it sort of happens occasionally, doesn’t happen all the time...
Politifact: "The RNC Said That Over The Last Six Months, Obama Has Golfed 10 Times And Held 106 Fundraisers Even As His Jobs Council Didn't Meet Once. The RNC's Tally Is On Target. We Rate This Statement True." (Politifact, "Did Barack Obama Hold 100-Plus Fundraisers While His Jobs Council Never Met?," Politifact , 7/19/12) Obama Has Attended 185 Fundraisers Since Announcing His Bid For Reelection.
...Obama played basketball with a Batman (Clooney) and a Spiderman (Tobey Maguire), all in one game. He held a private chat in Los Angeles with some of town's young stars last week, from Jessica Alba to Jeremy Renner.
He has had some of the most popular musicians in the business perform at his fundraisers, such as Alicia Keys, Cee Lo Green, Dave Matthews and the Foo Fighters. For his gig with Obama, Jon Bon Jovi even caught a ride on Air Force One.

Was Obama’s Communist Mentor His Father?

RightSideNews ^ | July 24, 2012 | Cliff Kincaid

Arizona’s Joe Arpaio, known as “America’s Toughest Sheriff” for his treatment of criminals, has been sued by the Obama Administration but is running for re-election this year. He may already have had the last laugh, as his investigators probing President Obama’s birth certificate have come up with sure-fire proof that the document has been tampered with. The evidence shows that the identification of Obama’s father as “African” was not on the original document.

Arpaio says the tampering may represent a “national security threat,” a reference to the fact that, if Obama’s birth certificate is fraudulent, foreigners seeking entry into or citizenship in the United States could similarly obtain phony documents. He is asking Congress to investigate.

The reason for the cover-up in Obama’s case, contends filmmaker Joel Gilbert, is that his real father was , Frank Marshall Davis, a Communist under FBI surveillance who was Obama’s mentor while he was growing up in Hawaii. The Gilbert film, “Dreams from My Real Father,” makes this case, based on a series of striking photo comparisons between Obama and Davis, and informed speculation that Davis, a sex “swinger” and pornographer, had an intimate affair with Obama’s mother. The film includes nude photos that Davis took of her in Davis’s home.
Joseph Farah’s WorldNetDaily, which has been working with and covering the Arpaio inquiry, now seems focused on the critical issue of not where Obama was born but whether the identity of the father has been concealed. Gilbert argues that the “birthers” were on the wrong track all along and that the work of Arpaio’s team “confirms both the evidence and thesis” presented in his film that the father was left as “unknown” on Barack Obama’s birth certificate.
Davis, perhaps the central figure in Obama’s early life, was referred to merely as “Frank” in Obama’s book Dreams from My Father. That cover-up was blown four years ago, when the identity of “Frank” was revealed and his 600-page FBI file was disclosed. Still, such figures as Dana Milbank of The Washington Post continue to refer to Davis as just a non-controversial “author.” Like many in the liberal media, Milbank has been determined to sanitize Obama’s relations with a Communist Party USA operative who was called before Congress to explain his involvement in “Soviet activities” in Hawaii.
These pro-Obama “journalists” understand that while the threat of communism does not pack the same kind of punch it did years ago, it would be extremely damaging for Obama to have it known that he was raised and trained by a Communist operative with loyalties to the old Soviet Union. Indeed, Obama’s loyalty to the U.S. might be questioned as a result.
Despite the failure to explain Davis’s Communist background and strong influence over Obama in his youth, the new Obama biography by David Maraniss, Barack Obama, the Story, confirms an Obama poem about “Pop” was about Davis, not the Kenyan or Obama’s grandfather. The poem talks about Davis and whiskey, and stains and smells on their “shorts.”
Without setting out to ascertain true paternity, Arpaio investigator Mike Zullo’s analysis takes the problem to a deeper level—the mentor may have been the actual father. He analyzed the numbers or codes on certain parts of Obama’s so-called “long-form birth certificate,” as released by the White House.
While most media, including conservative talk radio, have shied away from the blockbuster revelations, Zullo appeared on “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio” on New York’s WABC Radio to talk about the “faded set of puzzling, handwritten codes,” saying that “…they looked like pencil markings to us. Nobody really knew what they were.” Zullo told Klein they were able track down the “local registrar” who signed the document, a now 95-year-old woman named Verna Lee, who explained what the codes meant.
As noted by WorldNetDaily, Lee confirmed to investigators that the “9” meant the information is not stated, meaning there should not have been any information in the box in which the number is written and that it was left “unknown.” On the “official” document released by the White House, however, the “9” was next to “Race of Father,” under which “African,” a reference to Barack Hussein Obama, the “Kenyan goat herder” claimed by Obama as his father when he ran for office, was entered.
What all of this means is that the word “African” was inserted by persons unknown who apparently wanted the identity of the true father concealed.
The reason for the fraud is what takes the scandal to another more dangerous level. The evidence suggests that Obama’s birth document was altered not just to conceal a family scandal but to conceal Obama’s relationship with a Communist who was considered by the FBI to be a top Soviet operative in the state of Hawaii and eligible for arrest in the case of a national emergency.
But the alteration of the document did not go far enough. The “9” was left on by the forgers because they did not understand what it meant or whether it was relevant. They had to have figured that the “9” would have been ignored as mere scribbling on a birth certificate, having nothing to do with the “African” designation for the father.
This omission on their part has now come back to haunt them and constitutes proof, as noted by Arpaio and his investigators, that the document has been altered. But by whom? The culprits would have to include Obama and/or his top associates.
Not surprisingly, the media either ignored the revelation or distorted its significance. The Associated Press wire service covered the Arpaio news conference and noted, “The Obama campaign declined to comment on Arpaio’s allegations.” But the story went on to question the claims of the “birthers” without saying that the critical issue has now become the identity of the father.
Gilbert was the first to assemble evidence that the “African,” Barack Hussein Obama, was not Obama’s real father, and to offer a coherent explanation as to why the cover-up occurred.
Once it was decided that Davis could not be listed as the father, after the birth, the Kenyan Obama, who had a wife and children in Kenya, agreed to a “sham marriage” in exchange for certain benefits, Gilbert says.
He explains, “The Kenyan Obama applied only to extend his visa and for a work permit, instead of citizenship which he would have done if it were a real marriage and if the child was his. Frank Marshall Davis, a married man with five children, wanted the paternity covered up, while ‘Gramps,’ Stanley Dunham, needed a cover (Davis being under FBI surveillance) due to his government employment. Stanley Dunham knew the Kenyan Obama from his work with Operation Airlift Africa, as evidenced in the photo in the film. No father was named on Barack Obama's birth certificate because it was not acceptable for Davis to be named as the father, while the Kenyan was not accepting responsibility for the child, only to assist in the cover up for short term benefit.”
Gilbert tells AIM that, in addition to all of this, “I corresponded and spoke several times with an elderly friend of Frank Marshall Davis named Stephen T. Murin, who was 93 years old. When I asked him about the Obama birth certificate, he told me, ‘as far as I know they didn’t put any father on it.’ Unfortunately, Murin passed away suddenly and I never got a chance to interview him on camera.”
“Barack Obama built his political career on the goat herding Kenyan father, by which he meant that he would bring people together and was above politics. So the story went,” Gilbert said. “In fact, it is more likely Obama has a deeply disturbing family background, from which he acquired a Marxist political foundation. Frank Marshall Davis was a member of CPUSA, and a Communist propagandist and organizer, charged with bringing black people into the movement. Some CPUSA members became Soviet spies, stealing America’s atomic weapons plans and helping to ignite the Cold War. Davis was suspected of espionage in the FBI files.”
Gilbert concluded, “While voters will overlook some fudging by politicians, promoting a false family background to hide a Marxist agenda irreconcilable with American values is a totally unacceptable manipulation of the electorate.”
As Gilbert makes his case to the media, he finds resistance, even from conservative media organizations such as Newsmax.com. “On May 2 of this year, I paid Newsmax $4,350, in advance, for an advertising campaign,” he said at my Washington conference last week. “They pulled it at the last second. ‘Why?’ They said it was because they wanted ‘to move to the Center.’”

Is Bachmann being told to apologize or lose her position on House Intelligence Committee?

glennbeck.com ^ | 24JUL12 | Glenn Beck

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann is getting heat from establishment colleagues over her calls to look more closely into the Muslim Brotherhood and their disturbing influence and infiltration in Congress. Glenn urged people to stand with Bachmann because she is exposing a serious threat to America – it makes one wonder, why would anyone push back?

“I want to talk to you about something of the most serious nature I think I have addressed on the air in maybe a year,” Glenn said as he started the show this morning.

“Do you remember when I said social justice, and get out of churches if you’re involved with social justice?” he asked. “The attacks came from all quarters.”

“Today the political world is in the same kind of attack mode not against me but somebody else. Michelle Bachmann. For a letter she released last week, and within minutes the attacks started coming from both sides of the aisle.”
Bachmann has come under fire for comments directed at Clinton aide Huma Abedin. In a letter she co-signed, she said, “ ”Huma Abedin has three family members — her late father, her mother and her brother — connected to Muslim Brotherhood operatives and/or organizations.”
Glenn said, “No one including Michelle Bachmann is saying she has been compromised. What Michelle Bachmann is asking for – as is her duty to stand and protect and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic – all she’s asking is was there a proper check.”
Glenn has learned that she is now facing pressure to apologize for her comments for be removed from her position on the U.S. House intelligence committee.
When the controversy first started over Bachmann’s comments, she quickly explained: “Not once in the letter to the Inspector General of the Department of State, as you summarize, was it stated that “by extension, (Ms. Abedin), may be working on the organization’s behalf.”
She added, “That her family members are connected to the Muslim Brotherhood has been reported and referenced widely in the Arab-language media, including Al-Hayat, The Arab Times and Al-Jazeera.”
“That does not mean that Huma has done anything wrong,” Glenn explained.
Nevertheless, Glenn asked why it was so ridiculous to think that the same administration that allowed 9/11 Truther and former STORM member Van Jones to be the “green jobs czar” would fail at a background.
In the letter that Bachmann sent out, she had sixteen pages of footnoted information detailing evidence of Muslim Brotherhood infiltration into the United States government. You can read the full letter at the bottom of this article. On radio, Glenn went through some of the key arguments that Bachmann brought forth, and wondered why the media and other politicians were so quick to dismiss the entire document solely because of the Huma Abedin allegation.
“They’re focusing on a process question – whether one woman went through the proper background check. It is what the left always does when they set out to destroy someone. The other claims in this letter, like for example The Muslim Brotherhood is attempting to infiltrate our US government, are supported by quotes from the Muslim Brotherhood itself,” Glenn said.
“Michelle Bachmann is absolutely fearless and if they take Michele Bachmann out, they will take anyone out,” Glenn said. “This is both in the Republican and Democratic parties. She is saying what she believes. She is saying at great peril to her life and her job in Washington.”
“She is saying what she believes because she believes it’s what is right for the country. And so do I. Without any hesitation, without any reservation. I warn you if you do not take the Muslim Brotherhood seriously and help people like Michele Bachmann stand in this battle, they will pick them off one at a time,” Glenn said.
“There are very few people in Washington – more than you know, more than you would expect, less than you would hope – but there are those standing in Washington that are true to the constitution, true to the founding principles. True to themselves. Michelle Bachmann is one of them. She deserves and needs your support today. They are threatening – from the Republicans, Boehner and McCain – threatening Michele Bachmann that if she does not apologize for this letter today, she will lose her position on the intelligence committee. She is perfectly willing to have that happen. I am telling you that is a huge, huge mistake. And it is being orchestrated by those who either have their heads up someplace where their heads don’t belong or they’re getting marching orders from the very peaceful, very secular, nonpolitical, just sweet as pumpkin pie Muslim Brotherhood.”

Read the full letter At link

You Didn't Build That!

Somebody Else™ Made it Happen


What He Really Meant™

A shorter, more accurate version of a recent Obama ad "clarifying" what he meant.

And now for some cartoons


LA Times Can’t Believe 'Dark Knight Rises' Portrays Communism Negatively

Breitbart ^ | 7/24/12 | Ben Shapiro

In perhaps the least self-aware review of the politics of "The Dark Knight Rises" yet, Steven Zeitchik of the Los Angeles Times is befuddled at the idea that left-wing thought could ever be portrayed negatively. 

First, he admits his own incompetence: [M]ore politics doesn't mean your movie's message is more consistent or decipherable. Or perhaps the politics of "The Dark Knight Rises" is perfectly consistent and decipherable … and Zeitchik just doesn’t get it. In the next few lines, he shows that he has no clue what he’s talking about: Contradictions abound in "The Dark Knight Rises."

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

Unemployment Is Still the Biggest Election Issue (2008 Obama supporter Mort Zuckerman)!

WSJ ^ | 7/23/2012 | Mort Zuckerman

The assessment that the U.S. economy is "stuck in the mud," recently given to lawmakers by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, underscores again that there has been no recovery since the theoretical ending of the recession in June 2009.

For the 80% of Americans born after World War II, this is their Great Depression.

(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...

Bain Attacks on Romney Bomb Big Time; Anti-Obama Groundswell Continues to Build!

Rush Limbaugh.com ^ | July 24, 2012 | Rush Limbaugh


RUSH: Folks, according to latest Gallup/USA Today poll: "Despite the concerted Democrat attacks on his business record, [Romney] has a large advantage over [Obama] when it comes to managing the economy." The Politico has the story on this. "Gallup: Bain Still a Positive for Romney." This has been a total bomb by Obama, this effort to castigate Romney on the basis of Bain Capital. "It may be the political question of the summer," says Politico: "are Team Obama's attacks on Mitt Romney's business background working?

"Priorities USA polling says yes. Other independent polls -- including from Gallup and NBC/WSJ," say no. Not really. Reuters says it's working, but nowhere else. "Gallup's out with a round of data for USA Today that suggests, whatever the marginal impact of the Bain assault, Romney's businessman brand is more of an asset than anything else, and that in the big picture he's well positioned on the economy: 'By more than 2-1, 63%-29%, those surveyed say Romney's background in business, including his tenure at the private equity firm Bain Capital, would cause him to make good decisions, not bad ones, in dealing with the nation's economic problems over the next four years.'"

How many millions of dollars has Obama spent to bring about the exact opposite result? I'll tell you something, folks. It's stuff like this that makes me confident. I think that there is a hidden majority out there. I really do. You know, ever since Nixon first talked about it, there's been a Silent Majority. I think that there is a groundswell of anti-Obamaism out there that is set to explode and shock and surprise everybody in the media and on the Democrat side. I don't think this is a tight race.

I don't think it's nip and tuck like the polls say. You don't attack the US economy this way, you don't damage it this way, and have people just sit by and say, "Oh, okay." We have not become a passive people. We are not a passive country. The only poll that claims that Obama's attacks on Romney have had any effect is from Reuters. They claim that 36% of registered voters say the issue has made 'em see Romney less favorably, but that's the only poll out there saying that. And Reuters polls have traditionally been pretty laughable.

Just a week ago they claimed that Obama has surged ahead of Romney by six points, if you recall that one. No other poll has found that, then or now. So they're probably deep in the tank, obviously deep in the tank for Obama. And trying to "outlie even the outliers," is the way to put it. There is also now some concern, ladies and gentlemen, that we are seeing about "negative campaign ads" and whether they're working for Obama or not. See, that's the focus. Not whether the ads are true, not whether there's any merit to them, but, "Are these negative ads working?"

That's after the USA Today/Gallup poll comes out and they see "Oh, Romney's still doing well?" It's not, "Are negative ads good or bad?" It's: "Are they working?" It's: "Are they working for Obama?" Even the AP's article on this poll has to admit, quote, "The findings raise questions about Obama's strategy of targeting Bain's record in outsourcing jobs and hammering Romney for refusing to commit to releasing more than two years of his tax returns." The AP says, "Americans seem focused on the economy," damn it!

"Americans seem focused on the economy, where disappointment with the fragile recovery and the 8.2% unemployment rate are costing the president." Costing the president? What about costing the country? What about costing the American people? So despite what Newsweek says, we aren't "all socialists now." And these polls just continue to shock. Obama is floundering. I'm telling you. I have a story here by Chris Cillizza in the Washington Post: "Scariest Chart of the Day for Democrats."

I don't bother with charts, folks, because you can't see 'em. And I'm not gonna take the time to zoom in and out with my little Dittocam remote control here. So I don't do charts. Charts are for television. But I will tell you. Chris Cillizza: "Scariest Chart of the Day for Democrats -- Democrats (from President Obama on down) have spent months worrying (publicly and privately) that the massive influx of cash to Republican-aligned super PACs could create a massive inequality in spending over the final months of the 2012 campaign.

"Those fears are now well on their way to being realized as Republican super PACs continue to rake in sums well in excess of what their Democratic counterparts are collecting. The Sunlight Foundation, which does great things with data visualization, did the math and graphed out the total amount of itemized -- $200 and above -- contributions to Democratic and Republican aligned super PACs since the start of 2011. Republican super PACs have brought in $228 million since January 2011 while Democratic super PACs have collected $80 million in that time."

This is why the Democrats so hate the Citizens United ruling and so hate the idea that (whispers) corporations... I can cause heart attacks for any liberals in the audience by saying that word. (whispers) "Corporations are people." That just sends 'em into orbit. (whispers) "Corporations are people." They hate that ruling because of imbalances like this: $228 million to Republican super PACs. There are people giving money to Romney and these super PACs in droves to get rid of Obama.

Folks, it is unlike anything you've seen, and you're not hearing about it. But I'm telling you, there is an undercurrent. It's unseen because it's not reported. It's feared. The media, the Democrats, they all know it's there, and they're scared to death of it. But they don't dare talk about it in real terms so as not to give it any greater life than it already has. But they're worried to have it. There's "roughly a three to one advantage for conservatives." Conservatives that are giving this money.

"That chasm is even more consequential when you consider that former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney and the Republican National Committee ended June with $170 million in the bank as compared to $144 million for President Obama and the Democratic National Committee." So Cillizza says, "It's now an absolute certainty that Republicans -- from Romney’s campaign to the RNC to super PACs -- will outspend the Democratic combined money efforts between now and November 6.

"The only question that remains is" will it work?

That's the only thing they're worried about: Will it work?

So I'm feeling ebullient, not overconfident. Don't misunderstand. As I have said countless times and I will say it again: Anything can happen between now and November. Politics... (interruption) Huh? Oh, if the election were held today it'd be a landslide, a huge landslide. You know, I'm trying to play golf over the weekend, the member-guest. And I don't care where we went -- golf course, the heavy hors d'oeuvres cocktail party on Friday night, the beach club dinner on Saturday night -- people come up to me.

"So, Rush, tell me. Tell me what it's gonna be."

You know, normally in situations like that I kind of soft sell it so as not to inspire further conversation. All I'm trying to do is sit down and, you know, pretend I'm having fun at the party. But I just launched at them.

I said, "Landslide. Romney landslide."

And they all nod in great relief. "What about the Senate?"

"Ah. Reid's gone. That's key, but Reid's gone."

And that's when they start doubting with me. That's when they start having doubts. People still doubt. There's a tendency here to want to believe bad news. There's a tendency to want to believe that the bottom's dropping out. And I understand that. I mean, we're living in the middle of the bottom dropping out, and that's what we hope to stop and arrest. But no, if the election were today: Landslide. That’s what these guys are all saying when they report these polls, and they know it. They know how Obama stepped in it in Roanoke (and we're not through with that, by the way).

They know how Obama is stepping in it practically every time he goes off prompter. Carville's out there today warning the Democrats (paraphrased): "You better get off this gun-control business. You better leave it alone. You're gonna lose big if you keep harping on this gun-control business. Stay away from it! This incident in Colorado has not galvanized people against the Constitution of this country. This incident has not galvanized people into wanting more gun control."

Fast and Furious would not have worked, either, despite what they were trying.


RUSH: Now, some of this advantage that Obama has in his super PAC fundraising, of course, is Big Labor. Obama has that advantage. Big Labor is the equivalent of a super PAC. It's not thought of as such. No, it is thought of as such. It's not discussed as such. Obama has Big Labor. So Obama's gonna have his share of money. Don't buy this notion that it's the poorhouse for Obama. But they're not where they thought they would be. In fact, I just got a note reminding me that Obama's campaigning in Seattle and Oregon. Why would Obama be spending money in Seattle and Oregon?

He's raising money in both places, too, but it's not a place where they thought they would be. Now, this Chris Cillizza article. It's got some gold in it, I think. This poll that shows they're not having any effect on Romney with their attacks on Bain is probably why Cillizza wrote his article in the first place. Because it's a branch office of the Obama campaign. And according to Chris Cillizza, some within the Democrat Party are starting to get concerned about the way Obama's burning through his campaign funds.

They never show the same concern for the way he burns through taxpayer dollars, but when it's their own money, look at how concerned they are! They're actually concerned Obama's spending more than he's raising. They're actually concerned about the Obama campaign going into debt. They don't care about that for the country, of course. But their money? Yeah. It matters. Now, here are the hard numbers. According to the Washington Post, Obama's campaign spent $58 million in June alone; $38 million of it went to attack ads against Romney and Bain in the swing states.

None of which seems to have helped Obama at all. To date, the Obama campaign spent $107 million on TV ads, compared to $35 million spent by Romney, and they don't have anything to show for it. Romney's still neck and neck with Obama, if not inching ahead. Now, my own personal opinion is that these polls that show neck and neck are not really accurate. Well, they may be accurate in terms of what people are saying, but they're not accurate in terms of how people are gonna vote. I can't tell you why. It's not wishfulness. It's not hopefulness. It's not pie-in-the-sky utopianism here.

I'm telling you what I genuinely think is going out there. Now, think where Romney would be if we had an even slightly objective or fair news media. Now, according to Cillizza, the regime is following the strategy of the 2004 Bush campaign, which was: Turn out the base; forget the independents. That's what they say the Bush '04 campaign was: Just rev up the base, play to the base, and turn the base out. Don't target independents.

But that's not what Obama's doing at all. We had the piece from Thomas B. Edsall yesterday in the New York Times. We quoted from it. The Obama strategy is to try to suppress the Romney vote by running ads aimed at his white, blue collar supporters. They are trying to suppress the Romney vote. They are gonna run ads and are running ads that are designed to depress people like you, to dispirit people like you, to make you think it's over and that Romney hates you. You may have even seen some of these ads.

It's all tied to "Romney is Bain. Bain is rich. Rich ain't you. And they hate you because you're not rich and they're never gonna let you get rich. They don't want you to become rich." These are the focus points of the Obama ad campaign. It's designed to depress you. They've written off white, working-class voters. That was the first Thomas B. Edsall piece in November of last year. Now, in addition to writing off those voters, they're running ads designed to suppress that vote.

So they're not just replicating Bush '04 campaign and trying to turn out the base, although they are doing that. It's about all they've got. And they're losing independents big, in every one of these polls. They're way behind in independents, as of now. So this Gallup poll... It's interesting. It's always USA Today/Gallup, but when the news is good for Obama it's just a "Gallup poll." When it's bad for Obama, they call it the "USA Today/Gallup" poll. USA Today is in there when the news is bad for Obama.

And they're calling it the Gallup/USA Today poll today. And in this poll, like all the other polls of late, they're showing the strategy of suppressing the Romney vote. They're going after Bain Capital. They're trying to tell you, "Romney hates you. Romney laughs at you. Romney looks down his nose at you. Romney's this rich guy. His wife does horses and equestrian things, and you don't even know what the word means. And they're hoity-toity and highfalutin.

"They don't care about you. They'd just as soon see you in the mud," and so forth. This is the focus of the campaign, and it's not working. Now, what do we learn from this? It's apparently hard -- at least for Obama and his campaign -- to make voters hate somebody simply because he made money by virtue of his own hard work. That's what they're trying to do, and it's not working so far. And I guarantee you, they're in a tizzy at the White House over this and they don't know how to deal with it.

Selective Transparency

National Review ^ | 7/24/2012 | Victor Davis Hanson

We are in a transparency mania, but a rather selective sort of one. Bill Clinton, who chose not to tell the truth while under oath and as president, says he is “perplexed” that Mitt Romney did not offer more candor by providing more than a single year’s tax returns. Yet neither Jimmy Carter nor Ronald Reagan released more than one year’s returns. The reformist John McCain released just two.

True, the 2004 Democratic candidate, John Kerry, offered some 20 years of returns; but that gesture meant almost nothing because his billionaire wife, Teresa, supplied the vast majority of the funds that fueled Kerry’s opulent recreational lifestyle — and she kept largely quiet about where her money was banked and invested. Few in the press praised George W. Bush for releasing nine years of tax returns. Even then one could argue “So what?” — given that likely potential candidates can in advance massage their returns through making a bit less money, taking fewer deductions, and giving a little more to charity as they envision a political race in a few years, while incumbent officials usually have open-and-shut government salaries and simple deductions.

If we are truly in the age of transparency, then disclosure of medical records seems just as important. After all, the republic has had a checkered record of presidents failing to disclose their illnesses both before and during their tenure. Woodrow Wilson suffered from hypertension, but concealed that ailment from the public through two elections — until a debilitating stroke left him incapacitated during his second term. Franklin Roosevelt never disclosed the full extent of his paralysis, his weak cardiovascular condition, or a number of other major health problems — all of which predated his presidency and would affect his performance while in office. The tanned, youthful John Kennedy was far sicker than we knew; full disclosure about his health might have made his pasty-faced rival, Dick Nixon, seem robust in comparison. In 1992 Paul Tsongas probably knew of his cancer’s recurrence but did not disclose it during the Democratic primaries.

Given all that history, and the media demands in 2008 that the septuagenarian cancer survivor John McCain should release thousands of pages of medical records for journalists’ perusal, why did not Barack Obama simply release his medical records? The Left had always trumpeted the desire for “full disclosure” and was probably right in wanting McCain to assure us that he was hale; but, again, why was Obama given a complete pass?

Most of us have had to release our undergraduate transcripts either when being considered for a job or when applying for post-baccalaureate education. Yet Barack Obama apparently does not wish the information about his college career known either. Is he afraid that we will learn that his Occidental and Columbia transcripts were as dismal as was John McCain’s Naval Academy ranking, near the bottom of his class? But whereas the media frowned upon McCain’s carousing undergraduate days, suggesting that they might prove a harbinger of an unpredictable presidency, they were content with blissful ignorance about Obama’s serial drug use as an undergraduate.

There is some reason to worry about Obama’s own transparency, given that he is the least vetted sitting president since John Kennedy, whose vita continues to expand in unwelcome ways nearly half a century after his death. A sympathetic biographer has revealed that the main incidents in President Obama’s life, as told in his own memoir, were largely exaggerated, if not fabricated altogether. We are still perplexed why Barack Obama for over decade permitted Kenya to be listed as his birthplace on his literary agent’s biography of him. Obama has not been forthcoming about his complex two-decade relationship with the odious Reverend Jeremiah Wright. We know now that the president was far more intimate with ex-terrorist Bill Ayers and felon Tony Rezko than he ever let on.

When questions come up about the president’s reluctance to release medical records or college transcripts, or the evidence that he was a fabulist in matters of his own autobiography, the Obama campaign’s defense is essentially that his three and a half years as president have established that he is competent; such past questions, his defenders say, are rendered irrelevant by his present performance. But neither the media nor Obama’s supporters extend that allowance to Romney, who, as head of the 2002 winter Olympic games and as a successful governor of Massachusetts, long ago proved that his lucrative business career had not led to malfeasance but rather to fiscal acumen put to good service for the state.

So how much do we wish to detour from the issues to know about the background of either candidate Romney or incumbent Obama? Some sort of compromise seems in order. If transparency is really what the public demands, and if these issues distract attention from a necessary debate over the economy, then in bipartisan fashion let us now demand full disclosure from both candidates: ten years of income tax returns from each, full and complete access for journalists to all known medical records of each, and complete release of all undergraduate and graduate grades, test scores, and other records.

Romney may not wish to release a decade’s worth of careful tax planning and investment that might reveal him to be more concerned about making money and keeping most of it than about outsourcing or foreign bank accounts. Obama may likewise be embarrassed over a prior undisclosed ailment, or a relatively unimpressive Occidental or Columbia record that would belie his media reputation as the “smartest” man ever to serve as president in the nation’s history. Perhaps for much of August we might hear that Romney had a gargantuan Swiss bank account, or more bankers in the Caribbean than we had surmised. Maybe Obama smoked more marijuana than he has admitted to or received lots of Cs and even some Ds in International Relations — grades that would make it almost impossible for most students to get into Harvard Law School.

But such embarrassments would pass by the end of the summer, and we, the wiser, could move on to the campaign debate over the economy. In short, it is time either to demand that both candidates put up everything — or to shut up and return to the debate over two radically different visions of how to fix an ailing America.

Obama Ducks Jobs Council Because His Hand-Picked Experts Echo GOP on Jobs!

speaker.gov ^

Inquiring minds would like to know why President Obama hasn’t met with his once-highly-touted Jobs Council in more than six months. 

It’s been reported the Council was created “in part to inoculate himself” from an anti-business record, but the president has insisted, “This has not been a show council. This has been a work council.” And with unemployment at 8.2 percent and businesses represented on the Council predicting higher health care costs as a result of Obamacare, they probably expected some follow through from the president.

So what gives? The White House suggests the president, with “a lot on his plate,” is just too busy to be bothered with the Council. Given the president’s heavy fundraising schedule and wandering priorities, that seems to most like a stretch.

Perhaps there’s another reason he’s not eager to face them: he’d have to explain why he’s ignored – and even attacked – so many of their key recommendations. The Wall Street Journal reports, “President Barack Obama is at odds with some of his handpicked outside advisers on hot-button election topics such as regulations and corporate taxes.” Yeah, awkward.
Flashback to January. When the Council last met, they produced a series of recommendations to get the economy moving and create jobs. As it turned out, their report looked a lot like what House Republicans have been advocating in the Plan for America’s Job Creators. Here’s how Reuters described the Council’s recommendations back then:
“President Barack Obama's jobs council is calling for a corporate tax overhaul, expanded domestic drilling and new regulatory reforms… The panel calls for lowering corporate tax rates to ‘internationally competitive levels’ while broadening the corporate tax base by eliminating deductions and loopholes… the report calls for an ‘all in’ strategy on energy that would seek to further exploit domestic fossil-fuel supplies to reduce reliance on foreign imports… [and] the report called for a series of reforms to streamline government rules and reduce the regulatory burden on businesses, which it said would enhance U.S. competitiveness.”
As Speaker Boehner said at the time, “With this report, President Obama’s own panel of experts has endorsed the approach to job creation House Republicans have been pursuing for more than a year.” Indeed, House Republicans have passed more than 30 jobs bills that are focused on these very types of solutions: increasing American energy production, cutting red tape, providing tax relief for small businesses, and reforming our burdensome tax code. Despite calls for action from his Jobs Council, the president has “checked out” and roundly ignored these House-passed bills, leaving them to collect dust in the Democratic-controlled Senate.
The White House, in damage control mode, has assured Americans they aren’t giving up on the Council – even suggesting a supernatural relationship. But that weak spin isn’t going to cut it. After 41 months of unemployment above eight percent, Americans would appreciate a president focused more on saving jobs than saving face.

Obama Cannot Explain This

Flopping Aces ^ | 07-24-12 | James Raider

Twenty four centuries ago Socrates argued that the greatest of evils and the only evil worse than doing wrong was getting away with it. Since we experienced the economic near-collapse four years ago, we have also witnessed complete and utter failure in the administration of justice. Senior levels of the Department of Justice, of the banking industry, of the political system, are all “getting away with it.”
Is there any chance that Covington and Burling, the firm which represents JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, B. Of A., Wells Fargo, etc., and spawned AG Eric Holder and AAG Lanny Breuer, might be receiving disdain and a wagging finger from Socrates looking down from wherever he now sits and observes? Where have ethics gone?

We were recently provided with results of research which claimed that of five hundred financial sector senior executives in the US and the UK, 24% said unethical or illegal conduct was necessary, 26% said they had firsthand knowledge of wrongdoing, and 30% said their compensation pressured them to violate their ethical standards or violate laws. What a surprise, we thought. How could that be? Even the talking heads pretended to be flummoxed. Here’s another one to stupefy the public: 26% of the respondents in this survey said they had firsthand knowledge of wrongdoing. I don’t believe it. Any of it. Actually, it’s not that it’s not believable, because this is not an opinion arrived at through analysis - it is that this is simply not true. Such low percentages would fly in the face of common sense and human nature, . . . oh, and observation.

These percentages are likely off from reality by 100%. No one with any faint familiarity of the Street reading these fictional statistics would have difficulty, if applying objectivity and assessment that driven by motivations such as self preservation, a vast majority would throw ethics aside in favour of bonuses and prolonged career well-being.

Anyone who has hovered around the Wall Street crowds knows, for example, that insider trading is “de rigueur.” There are laws which traders heed, such as, “don’t you dare make a trade for the house without inside information or some knowledge.” But we will continue to hear otherwise, and occasionally be spectators to a very public destruction of a sacrificial lamb.

HSBC Holdings this past week made news when it became the subject of allegations that it conducted money-laundering for drug lords, dictators, and thieves, operating in places from Mexico to Saudi Arabia. It didn’t help that the bank provided terrorists with access to U.S. Dollars and the U.S. Financial system. Why does this bank still have anyone holding an account after news like this? Why isn’t the executive suite and the Board of Directors flushed? Oh, of course, a resignation or two, like David Bagley, the head of HSBC compliance, and all is forgiven. No harm done.

When we watch a Congressional committee pretend to question Jamie Dimon, the head of JP Morgan, we know the sparring will not be a public admonishment, or even a censure. JP Morgan turned $5 billion into noxious vapors, and Dimon faces Congressmen and eats their lunch, or as Daniel Day Lewis might say, “Drinks their milkshake.” He is evidently smarter than anyone who faced him from the bench, and his arrogance intimidated them. Congressmen will not get truth from Dimon or any of the guys controlling the money joystick. What they seem not to know, is that Arrogance is rooted in Insecurity. Don’t back off, go get him.
(Excerpt) Read more at floppingaces.net...

Nearly one in 10 employers to drop health coverage!

The Washington Times ^ | July 24, 2012 | Paige Winfield Cunningham

About one in 10 employers plan to drop health coverage when key provisions of the new health care law kick in less than two years from now, according to a survey to be released Tuesday by the consulting company Deloitte.

Nine percent of companies said they expect to stop offering coverage to their workers in the next one to three years, the Wall Street Journal reported. Around 81 percent said they would continue providing benefits and 10 percent said they weren't sure.

The companies, though, said a lot will depend on how future provisions of the law unfold, since most of the key parts are scheduled to take effect in 2014. One in three respondents said they could stop offering coverage if the law requires them to provide more generous benefits than they do now, if a tax on high-cost plans takes effect in 2018 as scheduled or if they decide it would be cheaper for them to pay the penalty for not providing insurance.

While small business don't face fines for failing to offer coverage, companies with 50 or more full time employees face a penalty starting at $2,000 per worker.

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

Obama whines Romney 'twisted' his words on 'you didn't build that'!


President Obama is now claiming Mitt Romney "twisted" his words by focusing on the now-infamous "you didn't build that" quote from earlier this month, telling a California crowd Monday that the line was taken out of context.
Speaking in Oakland Monday night, he said Romney knowingly "twisted my words around" to imply he didn't care about small business.
The fundraiser comments marked the latest effort by the Obama campaign to claim Romney pulled his quote out of context. The president is trying to douse the still-simmering controversy over his ill-phrased remarks on business in America, after taking a short hiatus from campaigning out of respect for the victims of the Colorado mass shooting, as did Romney. The Obama campaign released a web video titled "Tampered" on Monday that made the same point.
However, the campaign did not initially mount this argument. In the days immediately following the comments, in which the president suggested businesses owe their success in large part to government, the campaign defended the president's remarks -- without claiming they were taken out of context.
The Republican National Committee continued to hammer the quote on Tuesday, releasing a web video that included that and other recent Obama remarks on the economy. The video said: "These aren't gaffes. This is what Obama believes."
Here's what the president originally said in Roanoke, Va.:
"If you've been successful, you didn't get there on your own. You didn't get there on your own. I'm always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something -- there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there.
"If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you've got a business, you didn't build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didn't get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet."
Obama and his team are claiming the "that" was in reference to roads and bridges. Republicans have claimed he was talking about the businesses themselves.
Regardless, Republicans have also taken issue with the entire arc of the speech, not just the "you didn't build that line."
"The context is worse than the quote," Romney told CNBC, in an interview that was tweeted out by the Republican National Committee.
"The context, he says, you know, you think you've been successful because you're smart, but he says a lot of people are smart. You think you've been successful because you work hard, a lot of people work hard. This is an ideology which says hey, we're all the same here, we ought to take from all and give to one another and that achievement, individual initiative and risk-taking and success are not to be rewarded as they have in the past," Romney said. "It's a very strange and, in some respects, foreign to the American experience type of philosophy."

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/07/24/obama-claims-romney-twisted-his-words-on-didnt-build-that/#ixzz21YcTpEYw

The Final Step

Freedoms Journal ^ | July 23, 2012 | Armstrong Williams

A few predictions about Obamacare: It will be implemented, jobs will be destroyed, the economy will tank, which means that more and more people will qualify for free stuff and fewer and fewer people will be able to pay for free stuff.

According to the Doctor Patient Medical Association, 83% of American doctors have considered retiring because ofObamacare.

Thousands of doctors will retire rather than worry about the new laws, taxes, and legal liabilities. Eventually, there won’t be enough doctors to take care of all these people qualifying for free stuff. The money for free stuff will run out.

The next step everyone already knows from looking at Canada and Europe. Waiting for a doctor will be like waiting for bread behind the Iron Curtain. The problem will worsen and worsen.

(Excerpt) Read more at freedomsjournal.net ...

Is President Obama Above Water, and If So, Why?

Power Line ^ | July 23, 2012 | John Hinderaker

This morning David Gelernter wrote a thought-provoking post titled, “What Keeps This Failed President Above Water?” How can a president with a record as terrible as Barack Obama’s be running essentially even in the polls? I have some thoughts on that question from a perspective that is slightly different from Gelernter’s.

First of all, it is questionable whether Obama is, in reality, above water. He can’t get his approval rating out of the 40s, nor can he get a majority in any head-to-head poll with Mitt Romney, even among registered voters or “adults.” For a sitting president more than three months out from the election, that is a poor performance. The voters’ disgruntlement with Obama shows up in poll after poll. At the moment, Romney leads Obama 46-43 in the Rasmussen Survey. Today a new Gallup/USA Today poll got a lot of attention:
Despite concerted Democratic attacks on his business record, Republican challenger Mitt Romney scores a significant advantage over President Obama when it comes to managing the economy, reducing the federal budget deficit and creating jobs, a national USA TODAY/Gallup Poll finds.
By more than 2-1, 63%-29%, those surveyed say Romney’s background in business, including his tenure at the private equity firm Bain Capital, would cause him to make good decisions, not bad ones, in dealing with the nation’s economic problems over the next four years.
USA Today is quick to note that Obama does well in some measures unrelated to the economy:
To be sure, Obama retains significant advantages of his own. By 2-1, he’s rated as more likable than Romney.
Yeah, right. A couple of things are going on there. A great many Americans have only the vaguest impression of Romney and have no idea whether he is likable or not. And saying that Obama is “likable” is a good thing to tell a pollster after you have expressed the opinion that he doesn’t know jack about the economy. “He’s a nice guy, but…”
My guess is that the conventional wisdom will prove correct. Undecided voters will break against Obama in the campaign’s late days, and Romney will win fairly handily. That is, the electoral map will look more like 2004 than 2000.
All of that said, it is remarkable that 40%-plus of Americans say they intend to vote for Obama. Where have they been for the last four years? I think there are several reasons why a president as awful as Obama can command substantial support. The first is that an enormous number of Americans’ fortunes are more closely tied to government spending than to the economy. If you spend $3 to $4 trillion a year, you can buy a lot of votes.
The problem is compounded by the fact that so many Americans don’t pay any income taxes. If you don’t pay income taxes, and if you aren’t especially public-spirited, why, exactly, should you object to the Democrats’ spending spree? This chart from Investors Business Daily illustrates the trend:

Something like 50% of American households cash government checks, and more than 40% pay no income taxes. Do the math; it isn’t surprising that borrow-and-spend has more political appeal than it deserves.
Another factor is sheer partisanship. For millions of people, party loyalty is strong enough to bend perceptions of reality–or at least to bend the manner in which reality is described to pollsters. Thus, throughout the Obama years, African-Americans have rated the economy better than other demographic groups, even though objectively, they have suffered disproportionately. That can only be explained by loyalty to “their guy.” More broadly, Democrats express much more optimism about the economy than Republicans and Independents, as this Rasmussen poll finds:
Democrats have a much more optimistic view of the U.S. economy than either Republicans or unaffiliated adults.
Currently, just 36% of Democrats believe the economy is in poor shape, according to new Rasmussen Reports polling. Nearly twice as many Republicans (67%) offer such a pessimistic view. So do 54% of those not affiliated with either major party.
Put bluntly, if you are delusional about the economy, it makes sense that you might be willing to vote for Obama.
Currently, President Obama is hanging around like a sports team that by rights ought to be losing big, but is only a few points behind. In sports, the team that hangs around often puts on a spurt and wins in the end. In this year’s election, I don’t think Obama will be so fortunate. The fact that he commands as much support as he does is troubling, but reality will win out eventually. Here is a prediction: no liberal commentator will say anything of the sort before November, but as soon as the election results are in, a chorus of liberals will say that it is remarkable Obama performed as well as he did. Given how lousy the economy has been, one would have expected him to get clobbered.

Silly Putty for Potholes

on 11 April 2012, 11:51 AM

Prototype. Waterproof bags filled with a shear-thickening fluid that resists compression when run over by traffic.

CLEVELAND, OHIO—So-called non-Newtonian fluids are the stars of high school science demonstrations. In one example, an ooey-gooey batter made from corn starch and water oozes like a liquid when moved slowly. But punch it, or run across a giant puddle of it, and it becomes stiff like a solid. Pour it on top of a speaker cone, and the vibrations cause the fluid to stiffen and form strange tendril-like shapes. Now, a group of college students has figured out a new use for the strange stuff: filler for potholes.
The students, undergraduates at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, devised the idea as part of an engineering contest sponsored by the French materials company Saint-Gobain—and took first prize last week. The objective was to use simple materials to create a novel product.
"So we were putzing around with different ideas and things we wanted to work with—and we were like, what's a common, everyday problem all around the world that everybody hates?" explains 21-year-old team member Curtis Obert. "And we landed on potholes." He and four other students decided on a non-Newtonian fluid as a solution because of its unusual physical properties. "When there's no force being applied to it, it flows like a liquid does and fills in the holes," says Obert, "but when it gets run over, it acts like a solid."
Case student Nich Barron demonstrates the pothole fillers.
Credit: Mayank Saksena
Scientists call liquids that behave like this non-Newtonian because the viscosity, or resistance, of the fluid changes in response to the forces that are applied to it. This is in contrast to Newtonian fluids, which maintain their fluid state regardless of disturbances.
There are plenty of familiar non-Newtonian fluids, says Michael Graham, a chemical engineer not involved in the project who studies non-Newtonian fluid behavior at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Mayonnaise, ketchup, silly putty, and even blood are examples. Although these substances seem very different, Graham points out that they all contain some sort of particle—and the interaction of those particles explains their behavior.
Ketchup and mayonnaise are shear-thinning fluids. When sitting on your counter, they are thick and clumpy and don't flow because the particles have a tendency to stick together at rest, explains Graham. "Ketchup is actually mashed up tomatoes, and it's the little particles of tomato that are interacting with one another and keeping the fluid from moving," he says. "Mayonnaise is droplets of fat that stick together." But pressing on a glob of mayonnaise with a knife or shaking a bottle of ketchup creates shear stresses that disrupt the particles, so the fluids become runnier and more spreadable.
The type of material the students chose is the opposite of ketchup and mayonnaise. It's shear-thickening, meaning that when a shear stress is applied—say by the force of a car tire—it becomes stiffer and resists flowing. That's because the particles slip and slide past each other easily when moved gently, but they get stuck when strong forces are applied. "The harder you push on it, the higher the viscosity gets. If you push it really rapidly, the particles in the corn starch don't have time to rearrange and get around one another and they jam up," says Graham.

When fluid is moving quickly it is said to have a high "shear rate." At relatively low shear rates (i.e. when the fluid is disturbed gently), repulsive forces between the particles prevent them from clumping together and keep them evenly distributed throughout the fluid. However, when the shear forces that push the particles together become larger than the repulsive forces keeping them apart, the particles temporarily cluster together and form small chains called hydroclusters. Unlike individual particles, which can easily move around each other, the hydroclusters get locked in place and can't move, making the fluid temporarily behave like a solid.
The students say a little experimentation was required to get just the right formulation. "By working with different size particles, you can get different viscosities from it," says Obert. What they came up with is a powdered mixture that is stored in specially designed waterproof bags, which are made of a strong fiber like Kevlar lined with silicone. To produce a ready-made pothole patch, city workers would simply add water and seal the bag.
Currently, potholes are repaired by packing them with asphalt, which is messy, smelly, time-consuming, and requires specialized personnel and equipment, says Obert. By contrast, the fluid filled bags can be carried around in the trunks of police cruisers or vans and dropped into potholes on the spot by employees with little training or experience. They would then be covered with black adhesive fabric so that drivers don't perceive them as a hazard. "We definitely don't want people avoiding them," says team member Mayank Saksena.
The students have road-tested their designs on a number of Cleveland's potholes and found that the bags continue to perform well after more than a week of continuous use in high-traffic areas. Although the product has yet to be field tested in an actual Midwest winter, the students say the bags are intended to be sturdy enough that they can stand up to salt and freezing conditions for weeks at a time, until damaged roads can be permanently fixed. Furthermore, when the roads are repaired, the bags can be removed and reused. When they are not needed, they can be stored empty and refilled by mixing additional powder with water, for a very low cost.
The upfront price of the bags may be as much as or more than traditional repair methods, says Obert, but in the long run cities will save on materials and labor because the filling material is very inexpensive. "The bag might cost a hundred dollars but you can reuse it a hundred times, and by that time you'd be saving a ton of money."
The students plan to patent their invention, so they won't divulge their exact formulation, but they say it's biodegradable and safe enough to eat— although not very tasty. If the bags leak or tear, the contents pose no danger to people or the environment.
The city of East Cleveland has offered to help the students test their new pothole fillers, and the students say they have already been approached by several companies interested in working with them.
East Cleveland Service Director and City Engineer Ross Brankatelli says the product could be a great quick fix for temporary safety hazards, but he's less sure of its longevity in winter road conditions. "I think it will hold up under traffic—I think that part will work. But whether it will be able to handle real winter temperatures and be cost competitive as a semipermanent fix, I have some reservations about that."
Still, one thing is certain: If and when a commercial product is ready, there are more than enough holes to fill.

Look Back...NOW!

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ABC: Always Blame Conservatives

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I destroyed it!

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My Apology

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What we need.

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You didst not make it on your own!

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I want YOU on food stamps!

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More Liberal Logic

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"Then I said..."

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Which Way?

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Drought Tax

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Barack...You Did Build That!

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The House That Jack (thought) He Built!

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'Advance refusal' cards for patients fearing 'death pathway' (the future for ObamaCare)

The Telegraph ^ | 7/24/2012 | John Bingham

Terminally ill patients are being issued with special cards warning doctors not to place them on a controversial “death pathway” amid fears the practice is becoming routine. (UK...the future of ObamaCare)

The “advance refusal” notices operate like an organ donor card, enabling people approaching the end of their life to make their wishes clear to while they still have capacity.

It comes amid a growing backlash against overuse of the “Liverpool Care Pathway” which allows medical staff to withhold fluid and drugs from a patient while they are heavily sedated, actively speeding their end.

Supporters of the technique say that it is the kindest way of letting people slip away rather than die in pain.

But leading doctors have voiced fears that hospitals are hastening the deaths of elderly patients to cut costs and free up bed space amid claims it has become a “standard” alternative to euthanasia.

The number of patients put on the pathway has risen sharply in recent years, and opponents estimate that it is now said to be associated with almost a third of hospital deaths – or 130,000 people.

(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...

Mitt Romney is Too Far to the Right?

Red State ^ | 7/24/2012 | Erick Erickson

The casual consumer of news hears it all the time and not just from Democratic pundits. Reporters, pundits, and concern trolls in the media fret that Romney has had to move too far right. He’s just too conservative.

These same people never stop to examine Barack Obama. Between the two, Barack Obama has repeatedly surrounded himself with people who actually don’t much care for the United States. Writing that may anger people, but it is actual, factual, fact.

Instead of considering if Mitt Romney is too far to the right, perhaps we should consider if Barack Obama is too far to the left.

Barack Obama notes in his fictionalized autobiography that everyone bought and no one read that Frank Marshall Davis was an influence in his life. The Obama campaign disputes how much of an influence Davis was, but he had enough of an impact that Obama took time in Chicago to visit places Davis lived.
Davis was an activist communist and friend of Obama’s grandfather.
Barack Obama left Hawaii, went to Chicago, and sat in Jeremiah Wright’s church for 20 years. Among other things, Jeremiah Wright mouthed off from the pulpit about the “U.S. of KKK A”.
When he got his jump start into the major political arena, Barack Obama held a fundraiser in the living room of terrorists who had tried to kill police officers and blow up the Pentagon.
In fact, one of the terrorists, Bill Ayers, told the New York Times on September 11, 2001:
”I don’t regret setting bombs,” Bill Ayers said. ”I feel we didn’t do enough.”
During Barack Obama’s political career in Chicago, he headlined an event for the Democratic Socialists of America and joined the communist rooted New Party in Chicago as a way to get leverage on the ballot.
In the White House he appointed Van Jones, a self-described communist and Kevin Jennings who has his own far-left outside the mainstream issues.
And now out on the campaign trail, Barack Obama is peddling grade school Marxism in the name of fairness.
The left may keep up the drumbeat on Mitt Romney’s conservatism, but I’d like to think some Super PAC somewhere will make sure the public knows what the media won’t tell them — Barack Obama has spent a lot of time surrounded by people who hold the founding ideals of this country in contempt.
It is an inconvenient fact “reasonable” people are not supposed to discuss, but it also happens to be true.