Friday, May 2, 2014

Double Whammy: GOP Demands IRS Special Counsel

Breitbart ^ | 5-2-14 | Matthew Boyle
Not only are House Republicans forming a select committee to investigate Benghazi, there is now a concerted push from top GOP officials for the appointment of a special counsel on the IRS scandal. Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) introduced the IRS scandal special counsel resolution on Friday. Jordan’s resolution calls on Attorney General Eric Holder to appoint an independent counsel to investigate the IRS scandal, rather than the current Department of Justice attorney investigating. The current DOJ investigator donated thousands of dollars to President Obama’s re-election campaign and to the Democratic National Committee. In a statement announcing his resolution’s introduction, Jordan said: We need this Special Counsel to help us get to the truth because the so-called investigation by the Justice Department has been a joke. The current investigation has no credibility because it is being headed by a maxed-out donor who is financially invested in the President’s success. The Attorney General says he won’t share any information with Congress about the investigation, but looked the other way when information was leaked to the media signaling that no one would face criminal charges. This resolution calls for a real investigation by an unbiased investigator to get to the truth and hold those responsible for this illegal targeting accountable for their actions. ~snip~ Congressional investigations into the IRS targeting scandal have uncovered evidence of serious criminal activity, which must be resolved aording to the law. Unfortunately, the Department of Justice’s current investigation has lost credibility and public confidence. Appointing a Special Counsel is a necessary step to restore impartiality to a case that requires it. The person Attorney General Holder appoints must be someone beyond the Administration’s own political circle, whose professional independence and political disinterest is beyond reproach.
(Excerpt) Read more at breitbart.com ...

Selective Outrage when It Comes to Racism

Townhall.com ^ | May 2, 2014 | Linda Chavez
Racism is ugly, no matter who is spewing it. But there does seem to be a double standard when it comes to public outrage on the subject. It was less than a week after LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling's racist comments to his girlfriend in a private conversation became public that he was banned for life from NBA games and venues, fined $2.5 million, and on the verge of being forced to sell his team. But when a Democratic congressman engages in racist, public name-calling of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, the reaction is muted at best. First, let's be clear: What Sterling did was offensive and hurtful, and the man is clearly a repulsive character. But what was most shocking about the incident was how quickly the NBA moved to punish Sterling for uttering his prejudices in a private conversation, when the league earlier had ignored that Sterling engaged in actual illegal housing discrimination. In 2009, Sterling settled a suit with the Department of Justice, paying a nearly $3 million fine, the largest in history for federal housing discrimination. The precedent seems a dangerous one to me, not to mention hypocritical. However toxic Sterling's views -- and they are -- is it worse to reveal prejudiced sentiments to an intimate partner than it is to refuse to rent to individuals on the basis of the color of their skin? And what about forcing black and Hispanic tenants to live in dangerous, unsanitary buildings by refusing to make necessary repairs? But the NBA treated the former as a hanging offense and turned a blind eye to Sterling's egregious flouting of federal law. But if the NBA is guilty of hypocrisy, what about the Los Angeles chapter of the NAACP, which awarded Sterling its Humanitarian Award in 2008 and its President's Award in 2009 -- despite Sterling's record of housing discrimination? That raises the double standard at play in another ugly example of racial prejudice. Last week, Congressional Black Caucus member Rep. Bennie Thompson hurled a racial epithet at Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas on the radio, but his comments barely raised an eyebrow. Apparently a member of Congress calling Thomas an "Uncle Tom" -- and doing so on a program sponsored by the New Nation of Islam, no less -- is acceptable. And Thompson didn't leave it at that. When asked about his comments in an interview on CNN, Thompson doubled down, telling reporter Dana Bash that it's OK for him to use the term because he's black. Yet no one is suggesting that his colleagues reprimand Thompson for his clearly racist remarks. Directing racial slurs at blacks if they happen to be conservative has no consequences. No one gets ostracized. Apologies don't follow. And those with exquisite racial sensibilities see no problem in calling Thomas an "Uncle Tom" or depicting Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice as a self-proclaimed "house n*gga," as cartoonist Ted Rall did in 2004. The selective outrage is troubling. If a private organization decides it wants to exclude a racist from its midst, that is its right. But wouldn't it be good if we condemned racism in all its forms? Arguably, we ought to hold members of Congress to higher standards than we do private individuals. When former GOP Senate Minority Leader Trent Lott praised his colleague Sen. Strom Thurmond's presidential candidacy on a pro-segregationist ticket, he was forced to resign his leadership post in 2002 -- as I believed he should do and stated so at the time. Thompson should be held to the same standard. The congressman -- like Sterling -- can say what he wants, but his colleagues should shun him. If we're serious about abhorring racism, let's at least be consistent. Selective outrage undermines the legitimacy of our sentiments.

U.S. Economy Slides Deeper Into Decline

Townhall.com ^ | May 2, 2014 | Donald Lambro
WASHINGTON - The Obama economy nearly stopped breathing in the first quarter, giving the Republicans new political ammunition for a full takeover of Congress in the November elections. No sooner did the Commerce Department announce that the economy barely grew by one-tenth of one percent in the first three months of this year, than the news media was searching for the toughest words to describe the U.S. economy's demise under President Obama's anti- growth, anti-job policies. "U.S. Economic Growth Slows to a Crawl," was the way the Reuters news agency put it Wednesday, and even that was being generous. Some said the economy "stalled," or "barely grew" or "hit a wall." Others called the 0.1 percent growth rate "anemic," a word that doesn't do justice to an economy that has all but ground to a halt. But after one excuse after another for the president's economic failures, some in the news media weren't pulling their punches. Here's the way the Wall Street Journal put it: "U.S growth nearly stalled in the first three months of the year, fresh evidence that the economic expansion that began almost five years ago remains the weakest in modern history." "U.S. economic growth stalled to near zero," the Journal said on its website, minutes after the government announced its shocking number. Even the liberal New York Times, one of the Democrats' biggest apologists, pointed out that the economy's failing grade was actually a continuation of what Americans have been experiencing ever since Obama's first year in office, without any sustained improvement. "For all the attention devoted to the quarterly fluctuations, the current underlying rate of expansion is not much different from the frustratingly slow trajectory in place ever since the economy began to recover from the Great Recession," the Times said. "The average quarterly rate of growth since the summer of 2009 stands at 2.2 percent," the newspaper noted, a pathetic, sub-par rate of growth for the largest and once strongest economy on the planet. The White House was still peddling their belief that the economy would soon pick up in the second quarter and that the slowdown was the result of a harsh winter. But wiser economists aren't buying the administration's excuses. Dan North, the chief economist at Euler Hermes North America, a large insurer, told the Times that even if the growth rate picks up in the second quarter, "the annual growth rate in 2014 will most likely still be below the post-World War II average of just over 3 percent." "We've been living in a sub 3-percent land, and people have gotten used to that as the new normal," North said. "But it's not. It's anemic." Yes, a bitter winter took its toll on growth, but it was not the driving force behind a snails-pace economy. Its precipitous plunge into recession-leaning territory -- defined by two back to back quarters of near minus growth -- was driven by multiple weaknesses across the nation's economic landscape. U.S. exports plunged 7.6 percent, a victim of Obama's failure to negotiate new trade deals. Business investment fell as many companies cut back on their inventories in the face of a weak economy. The real estate markets were in decline as higher interest rates and rising prices pushed homeownership beyond the reach homebuyers. "The housing market has cooled recently as buyers have struggled to afford homes," the Los Angeles Times reported this week. The Federal Reserve said Wednesday that the "recovery in the housing sector remained slow." And remember all that inventory businesses bought in the second half of 2013, believing the economy was going to take off? Well, their shelves were still full throughout the first quarter, resulting "in manufacturers receiving fewer orders" in the past three months, Reuters reported. But the biggest factors behind the economy's decline is the shrinking labor market, high, long-term jobless rates, and stagnant or declining incomes. "A separate report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Wednesday on the employment cost index showed that private sector wages and salaries in the first quarter of 2014 increased at the slowest rate since the bureau began tracking the data in March 1980," the Times reported. Little wonder, then, that the Conference Board reported Wednesday that U.S. consumer confidence fell in April as a result of growing concerns about job cuts and business pullbacks in investment. There are lots of ways that this economy can be turned around, but Obama and the Democrats are opposed to all of them. We need revenue neutral, job friendly tax reform that scrubs corporate welfare out of the tax code, broadens the tax base, and lowers income tax rates across the board for businesses and individuals. The Republicans in the House have a plan ready to go, but Senate Democrats want no part of it. And Obama's too busy trying to raise the minimum wage, even though the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says it will kill 500,000 jobs. We need tax incentives to unlock trillions of dollars in capital investment to expand existing businesses, create new ones and boost employment. In his second term, Bill Clinton signed a GOP-passed capital gains tax cut and his economy took off. Obama and the Harry Reid Democrats flatly oppose this. We need to enact fast track trade authorization to open up world markets to American goods and services, but the Democrats won't even discuss it for fear of angering their party's union bosses. Sad to say, but the American economy is on a slippery slope to further decline and it's not going to get any better until we have tough, new leadership in the Senate and the Oval Office.

Obamacare: The Never-Ending Gift that Repeatedly Teaches Us that Big Government Doesn’t Work!

Townhall.com ^ | May 2, 2014 | Daniel J. Mitchell
Sigh. Another day, another grim Obamacare update. Actually, we have two updates on the never-ending disaster of government-run healthcare. Our first story comes from the Washington Times, which reports that the company hired to fix the failed Obamacare website is way behind schedule and way over budget.
Fixing the Obamacare website to get it ready to handle a second round of enrollments will cost the federal government $121 million… The deal, which Accenture announced on its website Tuesday, costs more than the $93.7 million it took to build HealthCare.gov in the first place. It’s also $30 million more than the government projected for fixes just a few months ago… “There doesn’t seem to be a light at the end of the tunnel for Obamacare website expenses,” said House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell E. Issa, California Republican.
I’m mystified, by the way, why taxpayers always have to cough up more money on these contracts. If some company promises to do X in exchange for Y amount of money, shouldn’t that contract be binding? Instead, this is just the latest chapter in the endless book of government cost overruns. Our second story comes from the Washington Examiner, which reports that there are some big problems with Obama’s supposed success of bribing and coercing people into Obamacare.
…officials from President Obama down have touted 8 million Americans signing up for coverage through the program’s exchanges. But, among other things, they haven’t revealed how many of those individuals formally completed their enrollment by paying their premiums. …>what the committee heard back was that just 67 percent of individuals signing up for health insurance through the federal health exchange as of April 15 paid their first month’s premiums and actually completed enrollment.
Gee, if that’s a success, I’d hate to see a failure. And the story also notes that the White House has been unable to trick sufficient numbers of young people into overpaying for healthcare. That’s very bad news for the insurance companies that put their trust in government.
In addition, just 25 percent of enrollees were between the ages of 18 and 34, according to the report. The administration had been aiming for roughly 40 percent of enrollees to come from this younger demographic to help offset the cost of providing coverage to older and sicker participants.
I guess this means stupid birth control ads weren’t enough to get young folks to flush away their dollars. Geesh, no wonder I’m tempted to feel sorry for the President. But let’s not forget that there actually are some people who are benefiting from Obamacare. It’s too bad, though, that we can’t all be corrupt DC insiders. Let’s close with some cartoons from Townhall. Since we’ve already talked about the absurdity of counting coerced enrollments as an indicator of success, we may as well share a funny Glenn McCoy cartoon that makes the same point. If you like this cartoon, Ted Cruz’s office put together a satirical – yet accurate – look at the “success” Obama has achieved. And this Eric Allie cartoon has the same message. And here’s Henry Payne on Obama’s mission-accomplished moment. Reminds me of the low-expectations theme Lisa Benson used in another very amusing Obamacare cartoon. Yup, the mission has been accomplished. A few million more Americans are now more dependent on government (which Mark Steyn explained was one of the left’s main goals) and the political class has made it harder for people to achieve the American dream. P.S. Switching topics, I can’t resist sharing this Michael Ramirez cartoon.

House Republicans call for special prosecutor on Tea Party targeting

The Hill ^ | 5/1/14 | Bernie Becker
House Republicans plan to vote next week on a resolution that would urge Attorney General Eric Holder to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the IRS’s improper scrutiny of Tea Party groups. In a statement announcing the vote, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said Republicans have no faith in the investigation that is already being carried out at the Justice Department. “It is time for Attorney General Holder to appoint a special counsel to investigate the IRS targeting scandal and bring the appropriate charges against those responsible,” Cantor said in a statement. “This is far too serious a matter
(Excerpt) Read more at thehill.com ...

IMPEACH: Official Says Obama NEVER Went Into Situation Room During Benghazi Attack (VIDEO)

Conservative Tribune ^ | May 02 2014 | Conservative Tribune
Obama has neglected his most basic duties as Commander-in-Chief so many times that it’s actually quite frightening. He skipped a key national security meeting right in the middle of the Ukraine crisis, then had the gall to do it AGAIN. On Benghazi, he was suspiciously missing from the picture when we were given more details about the timeline of the attack and the response from Washington. Now, the former NSA spokesperson admitted that Obama never even entered the situation room during the attack. Simply amazing. Via IJ Review: In a contentious interview with Bret Baier on Fox News, former NSA spokesperson Tommy Vietor admitted that Barack Obama never even entered the situation room even as the attack continued at the Benghazi consulate. Ironically, he was trying to defend the president when he made this comments, by criticizing Fox News for airing reports that Obama watched the attack unfold from the Situation Room. When did America become so complacent that we allowed this degree of dereliction of duty from our president go unpunished? It’s past time for Obama to answer for his actions during the Benghazi attack and finally be investigated by a special congressional committee and then impeached.
(Excerpt) Read more at conservativetribune.com ...

The household survey is insane, Opinion: Don’t believe the drop in the unemployment rate to 6.3%

Market Watch ^ | May 2, 2014 | By Rex Nutting
The household survey is simply insane. Do not pay any attention to it. Do not make eye contact. Just calmly walk away. It’s simply not believable that the labor market contracted so violently according to one survey, while at the same time a separate survey of business establishments showed strong payroll growth of 288,000. Consider this: The jobless rate fell because 733,000 fewer people were considered unemployed. That’s the largest one-month decline since 1949, when unemployment fell by 920,000 when two large national strikes concluded. Nothing like that happened in April.
(Excerpt) Read more at marketwatch.com ...

Two stories that remind us what Democrats really are: hateful racists and Anti-American bootlickers!

Coach is Right ^ | 5/2/14 | Kevin "Coach" Collins
Last Wednesday two stories appearing on line reminded us that the fake, phony Democrats are the racists and anti-Americans they try to portray conservatives to be. The first story is about an audio tape which has surfaced that includes Marie Strumolo Burke a White Democrat candidate for mayor of Belleville New Jersey saying she didn’t want her town to become a “F%^king N^%ger town.” The honest look at how Democrats really feel about African Americans was caught as a background remark on a voicemail left for another Belleville Councilperson. Since the Chairman of the town’s Planning Board was a party to the original call it is quite likely that Democrat Burke was apoplectic about...
(Excerpt) Read more at coachisright.com ...

Cheerleader

Power!

Oxymoron of the century

"IF"

Ignored?

Malcontents

Denial

MY Chair!

Indoctrination Kamps

Liberal Issues

Keystone Delay

Just Because!

No Voter Fraud?

History Repeats

White Trash

Swift-Boated

Sam Adams

Under it all

Brothers

The Other Side

I'm Hillary

SATAN?

Half-Baked