April 01, 2013
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- The New York Times
Day 1,526 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,393 Days
The New York Times is reputed to be America's "newspaper of record". It employs armies of credentialed reporters, stringers, specialists, researchers, editors, subeditors, fact checkers, and proofreaders. All these many people come together to do one thing -- to report the news. Accurately. Without bias.
I wonder if this Easter headline was deliberately disrespectful of Christians. nytimes.com/2013/03/31/opi…— James Taranto (@jamestaranto) April 1, 2013
Can't make this up: NYT issues correction on Easter, a holiday about which they apparently weren't that familiar: nationalreview.com/corner/344374/…— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) April 1, 2013
Here's the story...
POPE CALLS FOR
'PEACE IN ALL THE WORLD'
IN FIRST EASTER MESSAGE
VATICAN March 31, 2013 (NYT)
...and the correction.
Correction: April 1, 2013
An earlier version of this article mischaracterized the Christian holiday of Easter. It is the celebration of Jesus's resurrection from the dead, not his resurrection into heaven.
Christ ascended into heaven forty days after His Resurrection.
Layers and layers of editors and fact checkers.
March 23, 2013
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Nancy Pelosi VI
Day 1,517 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,402 Days
Lying is a political commodity. It is meant to be selectively expended. Lie too often and no one believes you. Lie judiciously and no one is sure. Lie all the time and you are Democrat. Volunteer the lie when you could take a pass and you are either Joe Biden or Nancy Pelosi.
Today's specimen, Nancy Pelosi.
March 21, 2013 (WaEx) - Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA, 8th). explained during her press conference today that she was eagerly looking forward to watching college basketball during the NCAA tournament.
"I don't want anybody to lose, I’m rooting for everybody, especially the players," she said, admitting that she had "a lot of allegiances" to the colleges in the tournament.
Political correctness has advanced from everyone makes the team, to everyone gets to play, to everyone wins. Flare to Nancy, when you root for everybody you are rooting for nobody. You are not rooting at all. The basic idea behind rooting is to wish one side to prevail over another.
"I'm crazy, I’m March Mad," she said. "I’m addicted to basketball -- I mean all sports -- but college basketball -- very exciting."
One is not addicted to "all sports" if you "don't want anyone to lose" because the basic concept of sport -- sides compete to win -- is missing. What Ms. Pelosi is addicted to is pushing a soft gray world, a world without edges or ambitions, a world where happiness is not a pursuit but a redistributed government benignity. This is a world she wishes on you. Nancy, of course, lives elsewhere, a privileged elsewhere of her own making.
"I'm crazy." Truth will out.
March 22, 2013
NYC Letter: Joe Biden Is An Idiot XXVIII -- Standing On Dignity
Day 1,516 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,403 Days
Mr. Biden stands on dignity. [Snort.] Mr. Biden stands on dignity much like the short actor stands on his apple crate, to level up.
NEW YORK March 21, 2013 (Yahoo!/AP) - Joe Biden doesn't kiss up to anyone -- whether a queen or a pope.
The vice president told a gathering of Irish-Americans in New York City on Thursday that as a young U.S. senator he was to meet the queen of England. He remembers getting a call from his mother, who told him not to kiss the queen's ring.
And the media's layers and layers of fact-checkers and editors just pass on the fairy tale of the brassy Bidens. We had a look at royal etiquette, what is expected and what is required when greeting British royalty. We found no prescribed etiquette for non-nationals for ring-kissing or any other gesture of subjection. Here is what we did find:
- Do not bow or curtsy if you are not British. Unless you are British, you do not have to curtsy in the presence of the queen. Paul Gauger, the director of regional press for VisitBritain, on Good Morning America:As an American when you're actually meeting the queen you don't have to do a curtsy or a bow because she's not the head of the state of America.
- Do not offer a handshake. Royal Etiquette applies to not touching the queen or any member of the royal family.
So Mr. Biden brags on flaunting an etiquette that does not apply in practice and does not exist in form. The press plays along. The imaginary slight to the queen was a lead-in to Mr. Biden's real slight to his Pope.
Years later, when he was to meet Pope John Paul II, Biden says his mother told him not to kiss the pope's ring. Biden, a Roman Catholic descended from struggling Irish immigrants, says his dad said it was "all about dignity."
Mr. Biden helpfully informs us he is "not a Pope John Paul guy". But Mr. Biden claims to be a Catholic, which means that he is subject to the Church in the person of Her Pope and bound in the observances of Church ceremony and etiquette. Monsignor K. Bartholomew Smith:
Do I kiss the [papal] ring?
Yes, if you are Catholic and the pope offers his hand. If you're not Catholic, you can opt to shake his hand. That's what President Bush did on Tuesday when he met the pope at Andrews Air Force Base outside of Washington, D.C. The ring is a mark of the papacy and, according to Smith, kissing it is a sign of respect and affection.
Mr. Biden's respect and affection for the Catholic Church are variable when they are not absent altogether.
VATICAN March 20, 2013 (LifeNews) - Biden’s office confirmed to the Washington Times that he had received communion and reporters in the White House presidential reporting pool confirmed in an email to LifeNews that Pelosi had received it as well. Pope Francis did not administer the sacrament.
Father Frank Pavone [National Director, Priests for Life] told the LifeNews he opposed the two pro-abortion politicos receiving communion since their pro-abortion views are outside the teachings of the Catholic Church.Some Church leaders mistakenly think we are advocating the use of the Eucharist as a 'weapon'. In fact, we are defending the Eucharist from being used as a political tool. These politicians have no respect for what the Eucharist means: an integral, consistent union with Christ and with all our brothers and sisters. To receive Christ while rejecting the unborn is a slap in the face to both.
The communion came even as Pope Francis’ homily celebrated the right to life of unborn children.
Again, mother Biden.
Biden says his mother told him that no one is "better" than him. And while Biden should treat everyone with respect, his mother said her son should also "demand respect".
Here is an example of Mr. Biden's show of respect tripping over his demand for respect in Claremont, New Hampshire, April 3, 1987.
The [C-SPAN] tape, which was made available by C-SPAN in response to a reporter's request, showed a testy exchange in response to a question about his law school record from a man identified only as "Frank". Mr. Biden looked at his questioner and said: "I think I have a much higher I.Q. than you do."
He then went on to say that he "went to law school on a full academic scholarship - the only one in my class to have a full academic scholarship," Mr. Biden said. He also said that he "ended up in the top half" of his class and won a prize in an international moot court competition. In college, Mr. Biden said in the appearance, he was "the outstanding student in the political science department" and "graduated with three degrees from college".
In his statement today, Mr. Biden, who attended the Syracuse College of Law and graduated 76th in a class of 85 [i.e., the bottom quintile], acknowledged: "I did not graduate in the top half of my class at law school and my recollection of this was inaccurate."
As for receiving three degrees, Mr. Biden said: "I graduated from the University of Delaware with a double major in history and political science. My reference to degrees at the Claremont event was intended to refer to these majors -- I said 'three' and should have said 'two'." Mr. Biden received a single B.A. in history and political science.
Mr. Biden is an inveterate braggart, the big man, the star, the hero, of the little movie that is constantly running in his head. The mother's claim that no one is "better" than her son no doubt haunts a son disabused by a lifetime of posturing, clowning, ignominies, stinginess, pouts, pettiness, and vicious politicking. Still, Mr. Biden is pretty darn sure he is better than most anyone (but not everyone).
It's all about dignity. The dignity of the phony.
"Dignity and an empty sack is worth the sack." (№109 here.)
March 09, 2013
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Début! Dianne Feinstein
Day 1,503 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,416 Days
Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) is the chair on the Senate Intelligence Committee. [Pause.] Don't read too much into that.
The time has come, America, to step up and ban these weapons. The other very important part of this bill is to ban large capacity ammunition feeding devices, those that hold more than 10 rounds. We have federal regulations and state laws that prohibit hunting ducks with more than three rounds. And yet it’s legal to hunt humans with 15-round, 30-round, even 150-round magazines.
Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on gun control
WASHINGTON March 7, 2013 (Blaze)
Ms. Feinstein has here confused the Second Amendment with Mr. Obama's domestic drone policy.
It didn't stop there. The Big Stupid just rolled on:
The problem with expanding this [scil., firearms ban] is that, you know, with the advent of PTSD, which I think is a new phenomenon as a product of the Iraq War, it's not clear how the seller or transferrer of a firearm covered by this bill would verify that an individual was a member, or a veteran, and that there was no impairment of that individual with respect to having a weapon like this.
So, you know, I would be happy to sit down with you again and see if we could work something out but I think we have to -- if you're going to do this, find a way that veterans who are incapacitated for one reason or another mentally don't have access to this kind of weapon.
If Ms. Feinstein had any idea what PTSD is she might have a clue to its distant advent in human psychology.* But she doesn't so she doesn't. Were Ms. Feinstein up to snuff as chair of an intelligence committee, she might be sensitive to the unscientific bias toward veterans as at-risk for PTSD. But she isn't so she isn't.
Big government by Big Stupid.
* There is persuasive dissent that PTSD is wholly modern, but, even so, that opinion dates PTSD back to the Vietnam war.
March 01, 2013
NYC Letter: Joe Biden Is An Idiot XXVII -- Bragging On Nothing
Day 1,496 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,423 Days
Special Mr. Big Stuff Edition
Mr. Biden is quite the guy. Just ask him.
His attainments are truly incredible -- understood in its ascendant meaning.
In a slam-down with a constituent, among other claims, Mr. Biden boasted he "ended up in the top half" of his class while graduating 76th in a class of 85, that's the bottom quintile. After calling the surge in Iraq a "failure", he revealed he was behind its actual success all along. He thinks he's a good bet for 2016. He thinks he's a good bet for most any office -- except the vice presidency, the fainéant office he holds.
Wednesday hosting a Black History Month celebration, Mr. Biden let the occasion get the better of prudent reserve. Surrounded by veterans of the civil rights movement, he bragged on his being an inconsequential person during the civil rights movement.
WASHINGTON March 1, 2013 (WaEx) - Vice President Biden is amazed when whites try to act like they know what blacks have been through, but given a chance this week to brag on his part to end Jim Crow laws, he offered up that he helped to desegregate movie theaters as a kid.
... Biden waxed on about those in the movement who helped him learn about discrimination as a boy and as a senator from Delaware. He recalled the hatred he felt watching violent clashes between whites and blacks. And he admitted to "feeling guilty" that he wasn't marching with activists.
But the vice president said that he did a little part to end Jim Crow laws. As his crowd listened closely Wednesday, according to a White House tape of the event, Biden said that as a kid he was "trying just a little tiny bit at home to desegregate movie theaters and those things we were doing."
As with some other Biden moments, it was a stretch. It wasn't "movie theaters", it was just one movie house. In 1983, after he suggested he was deeply involved in the civil rights movement, at 17 participating in "sit-ins to desegregate restaurants and movie houses", an aide told the New York Times that Biden only tried to desegregate "one restaurant and one movie theater."
Even as he made his latest comments, Biden seemed to realize he might be embellishing. "No big deal," he said. "I want to make it clear to the press, I was no great shakes in the civil rights movement."
"'No great shakes in the civil rights movement,' but let me throw this out there. It's Black History Month and I want to stay on theme." [Pause.] Mr. Biden makes a claim of such puniness he feels compelled to dismiss its puniness. He does so amidst those with genuine claims. [Pause.] It is the telltale of a small man straining to be a great man.
Here is Mr. Biden's original remark made at the New Jersey Democratic State Convention, September 13, 1983:
When I was 17, I participated in sit-ins to desegregate restaurants and movie houses. And my stomach turned upon hearing the voices of Faubus and Wallace. My soul raged on seeing Bull Connor and his dogs.
In a press conference later that week, to address revelations of plagiarism, Mr. Biden had calmed his raging soul:
During the 60's, I was, in fact, very concerned about the civil rights movement. ... I was not an activist. ... I worked at an all-black swimming pool in the east side of Wilmington, Delaware I was involved in what they were thinking, what they were feeling. But I was not out marching. I was not down in not out marching. I was not down in Selma. I was not anywhere else. I was a suburbanite kid who got a dose of exposure to what was happening to black Americans.
When scripting the movie of his life, Mr. Biden repeatedly casts himself as the admirable hero, the hero he lacks the smarts or courage or fire or honesty to be in real life. To wit, his smug coda at the Black History Month fête:
During the event, he put the hammer down on his white liberal friends. "It always amazes me how my white liberal friends think they understand the black community" without having lived in a black community, he said.
Yo. B-man izin da hood!
What's humbled me, as you walk out, I mean, everywhere I go, crowds spontaneously assemble. They start to cheer, whether I go to a play on Broadway or I'm going home to Wilmington, Delaware. I walk on the train. People stand up and clap. I mean, it's humbled me.
Obviously not all that humbled.
Because he's all that.
February 28, 2013
NYC Letter: Aritmetic Ist Schwer -- Maxine Waters
Day 1,495 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,424 Days
Sequester More Awful, Awful, Awful
Than Anyone Thought Edition
Maxine Waters (D-CA, 35th) worries over the sequester.
WASHINGTON February 28, 2013 (RCP) - Maxine Waters:*We don’t need to be having something like sequestration that's going to cause these jobs losses, over 170 million jobs that could be lost** -- and so he [scil., Ben Bernanke] made it very clear he's not opposed to cuts but cuts must be done over a long period of time and in a very planned way rather than this blunt cutting that will be done by sequestration.
According to the BLS, the current total of employed workers is between 134,825,000 (Table B-1, nonfarm) and 143,322,000 (Table A-1). Let's split the difference and say 139,073,500. So. According to Ms. Waters it's conceivable that with sequestration 122% of the American work force could lose their jobs. That's everyone, plus 30,926,500 schlimazels who get laid off twice.
The good news -- Ms. Waters will be out of a job with the rest of us. Silver lining.
170 MILLION JOBS LOST, MAYBE
[Picture source: dentonexable/YouTube]
* Ms. Waters voted against The Budget Control Act of 2011, which is provisioned with the automatic budget sequestration.
** As impressive as Ms. Waters' hyped whammy is, she can't touch Nancy Pelosi for hyped doom:
Every month we do not have an economic recovery package 500 million Americans lose their jobs.
February 26, 2013
NYC Letter: Joe Biden Is An Idiot XXVI Redux -- "Buy A Shotgun. Buy A Shotgun."
Day 1,493 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,426 Days
Listen up, Ladies.
If you want to protect yourself, get a double-barrel shotgun. Have the shells, a 12-gauge shotgun -- And I promise you, as I told my wife -- we live in area that's wooded and is somewhat secluded -- I said, "Jill, if there's ever a problem, just walk out on the balcony here, walk out, put that double-barrel shotgun and fire two blasts outside the house." I promise you whoever's coming in is not gon -- You don't need an AR-15. It's harder to aim, it's harder to use and in fact, you don't need 30 rounds to protect yourself. Buy a shotgun. Buy a shotgun.
Here's what that advice looks like in practice.
"I PROMISE YOU WHOEVER'S COMING IN IS NOT GON -- "
[Picture source: TypicalWhitePerson/YouTube]
This sort of insight into what's best for wimmens is why the wimmens find him so
"I promise you whoever's coming in is not gon -- " "Not gon" what?
* So finds Wonkette Rebecca Schoenkopf:
Wonkers, until now were your panties too dry? Well Old Handsome Joe Biden is from the government, and he’s here to help.
We mean, we are aware that we have a thing for daddies (and also of all internet traditions), but look at this motherfucking Silver Fox in his spanking new official portrait, and the smile, and the eyes. Those kind eyes. Those eyes that chain us to him, hyp-no-tized, like Kaa, the snake in The Jungle Book except that (sadly) he does not want to eat us. We are purring at you, Old Handsome Joe. We are a kitten without a whip.
Perhaps you are not gay for Old Handsome Joe. We suggest, if that is the case, that you go back under your WeaselZippers rock and leave us here, in our bunk, unmolested.
February 21, 2013
NYC Letter: Joe Biden Is An Idiot XXVI -- "Two Blasts"
Day 1,488 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,431 Days
Mr. Biden pulls another bit of fancy from out his nether wink.
Carney was ready to report that VP Biden owns a 12-gauge and 20-gauge that he keeps locked in a safe in his home.— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) February 20, 2013
WASHINGTON February 20, 2013 (FNC/AP) - Vice President Joe Biden said Tuesday that Americans don't need semi-automatic weapons to protect their homes because a couple of blasts from a shotgun will scare off intruders.
"Buy a shotgun, buy a shotgun," the vice president encouraged those worried about defending themselves.
... Biden said he keeps two shotguns and shells locked up at home and he's told his wife, Jill, to use them if she needs protection. He presumably was speaking about before he became vice president, a position that gives the couple full-time Secret Service protection.
"I said, 'Jill, if there's ever a problem, just walk out on the balcony ... take that double-barrel shotgun and fire two blasts outside the house'," Biden said. "You don't need an AR-15. It's harder to aim, it's harder to use and in fact, you don't need 30 rounds to protect yourself."
So here is Mr. Biden's improbable scenario. An intruder gets past a Secret Service detail, disables the home security, and breaks into Mr. Biden's palatial mansion. Hearing the intruder, Mrs. Biden makes her way to the gun safe, fumbles with the tumblers, retrieves and loads a shotgun, makes her way to a balcony, and discharges both barrels of the shotgun into the big blue sky, expending her available ammunition -- unless she had the presence of mind to take a box of shells. The intruder, who can now easily locate Mrs. Biden, instead flees into the arms of the alerted Secret Service slacker detail.
Mr. Biden is sure this is your scenario too, minus the Secret Service and palatial digs. If yours is a two-bedroom home, in all probability your intruder will locate you before you get to your gun safe, unlock it, retrieve and load your shotgun, open the window and waste your shot. [Pause.] This is why you keep a SIG Sauer P226 with its 9mm Parabellum 20-round magazine in the nightstand.
Biden said he learned his lessons on gun safety from his father, who was a hunter. He said as a child, he wasn't even allowed to point a cap gun at other children while playing cops and robbers.
Mr. Biden just has to push his personal hagiography. Born in 1942, Mr. Biden's cops-and-robbers play days were long before the advent of politically correct parental intervention. What is the point of cap guns in cops-and-robbers without the one side shooting the other? What kid with a cap gun playing cops-and-robbers or cowboys-and-Indians doesn't point at and shoot the other side, then argue about the lethality of the shot? Or did Mr. Biden's buddies holster their guns and play at negotiating between the cops and the robbers? If you believe this malarkey, Mr. Biden would like to bore you with his fantastic college career.
UPDATE 02.22.13: Turns out, besides the irreality of Joe Biden's scenario, he gave his wife awful advice, advice fraught with likely illegalities. [Hat tip: Carine & Hervé]
JOE BIDEN'S SHOTGUN ADVICE
COULD LAND JILL BIDEN IN JAIL
Felony Aggravated Menacing, Reckless Endangering
Charges Could Result From Shooting Gun In Air
February 20, 2013 (USNWR) - In a Facebook "chat" Tuesday, the vice president said that he had advised his wife, Jill, to fire a shotgun in the air from their Delaware home's porch if she was concerned for her safety. ... However, Delaware law would likely make his suggestion illegal -- unless the shots were fired in self-defense in a truly life-threatening situation.
A sergeant with the Wilmington, Del., police department explained to U.S. News that city residents are not allowed to fire guns on their property.
... [Defense attorney John Garey, a former Delaware deputy attorney general] said that under Biden's scenario, Jill Biden could be charged with aggravated menacing, a felony, and reckless endangering in the first degree.
... Tom Shellenberger, a lawyer who serves as a spokesman for the Delaware State Sportsmen's Association, told U.S. News that Biden's security tip was "the worst type of advice." Mr. Shellenberger:I am a member of the Delaware Bar, as is Vice President Biden. There are a number of statutory restrictions that could be violated by shooting a shotgun off the porch.
In addition to felony charges, Shellenberger cited the "Discharge of a firearm within 15 yards of a road (7 Del.C. § 719), a misdemeanor," and "Violation of the residential dwelling safety zone as set forth in 7 Del.C. § 723, also a misdemeanor."
"Beyond the potential criminal liability, it is simply bad advice," added Shellenberger. "Not only does blasting blindly away put innocent persons at risk, it also tells the bad guys where you are and that you are armed. In most circumstances, it might be better if that comes as a surprise to the bad guys."
Bidenī ignorantia juris non excusat. [Biden's ignorance of the law does not excuse.]
* Here's the trailer. Go on. It's exactly what you think it is.
February 14, 2013
NYC Letter: Thought For The Day, Début! -- Sandra Fluke
Day 1,481 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,438 Days
Denken ist schwer.*
That’s a pretty scary proposition if you’re an employee. Most of us as employees don't have the freedom to choose any employer we want.
[Hat tip: Jeryl Bier]
We pray for the day involuntary servitude is abolished. Oh. Wait. When did that happen?
Demand free birth control AND the employer of your dreams.
* Echoing Johann Wolfgang von Goethe: "Handeln ist leicht, Denken schwer; nach dem Gedanken handeln unbequem." ("Action is easy, thinking hard; acting according to the mind uncomfortable." Translation by A Luminous Halo.)
February 06, 2013
NYC Letter: Newspeak Dictionary,12th Edition -- Out-Of-Status
Day 1,473 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,446 Days
To disestablish the established meaning of a word or phrase is to end its useful life. When "illegal alien" no longer means "illegal" nor "alien" then it ceases to mean anything useful. John Conyers does not believe illegal aliens exist. And to be sure, he wants the term banned from public discourse.
February 5, 2013 (TWT) - Opening the first immigration hearing of the new Congress, the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee warned his colleagues not to use the term "illegal immigrant" as the debate goes on. Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-MI, 14th).I hope no one uses the term illegal immigrants here today. Our citizens are not -- the people in this country are not illegal. They are are out of status. They are new Americans that are immigrant.
[Picture source: AP/Monster Galaxy]
All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside.
People who are neither born (jus soli) nor naturalized in the United States are aliens. If they reside in the United States without legal sanction they are illegal aliens. All of which is to say, they are not citizens with the rights of a citizen. Article I §8, Clause 4 confers on Congress the power "to establish a uniform rule of naturalization...throughout the United States". That would be the whole of Congress, not Mr. Conyers' conferment alone.
Many immigrant-rights advocates object to the terms "illegal" and "alien", saying that people cannot be deemed illegal, and that the word "alien" makes them sound inhuman. They argue the better terms are "undocumented migrants".
Many newspapers, including The Washington Times, use the phrase "illegal immigrant", deeming it the most accurate description.
But defenders of the term "alien" argue that an immigrant is someone who arrived here legally, while an alien is any foreigner -- therefore an "illegal alien" is the proper description for those who are here outside of the law.
Academics, searching for a more neutral term, have recently begun using "unauthorized migrants" as their phrase of choice.
The verbal twist-ups favored by "immigrant-rights advocates" and academics are meant to undo the laws that pertain. The suggestion is that the illegal alien is a quasi-citizen with a parallel set of extra-legal rights -- obligations of the state to his or her person -- beyond basal human rights. Such rights are not established in law but through advocacy and the shaping of public discourse. Mr. Conyers above confers citizenship on illegal aliens by describing them as some new class of citizen. A class of citizenry that only exists in the rarefied precincts of Mr. Conyers' political correctness.
Where "immigrant-rights advocates" cannot vitiate actual enforcement, they seek confoundment. Making established law meaningless is one step away from chucking it altogether. Someone will have to swallow a bitter pill on illegal immigration. Either those who immigrate illegally are made subject to the law or those who immigrate legally are made saps for abiding by the rules. In the meantime can Mr. Conyers at least stop pretending that the immigration laws don't exist.
And now a Kultur Korner reading on Newspeak:
Syme was a philologist, a specialist in Newspeak. Indeed, he was one of the enormous team of experts now engaged in compiling the Eleventh Edition of the Newspeak Dictionary.
… 'We're getting the language into its final shape--the shape it's going to have when nobody speaks anything else. When we've finished with it, people like you will have to learn it all over again. You think, I dare say, that our chief job is inventing new words. But not a bit of it! We're destroying words--scores of them, hundreds of them, every day. We're cutting the language down to the bone.
… 'Don't you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it. Every concept that can ever be needed, will be expressed by exactly one word, with its meaning rigidly defined and all its subsidiary meanings rubbed out and forgotten. … Every year fewer and fewer words, and the range of consciousness always a little smaller. ... The Revolution will be complete when the language is perfect. … Has it ever occurred to you, Winston, that by the year 2050, at the very latest, not a single human being will be alive who could understand such a conversation as we are having now?'
'Except----' began Winston doubtfully, and he stopped.
"The Revolution will be complete when the language is perfect."
* 5 U.S.C. § 3331, Oath of Office: An individual, except the President, elected or appointed to an office of honor or profit in the civil service or uniformed services, shall take the following oath: "I, [name of declarant], do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God."
February 05, 2013
NYC Letter: Lost In The Great Big World -- Portugal
Day 1,472 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,447 Days
What Mr. Biden has forgotten coupled with what he never knew nets out to pretty much knowing nothing.
February 4, 2013 (Telegraph) - Biden has a well-earned reputation as a gaffe-maker extraordinaire, and this speech was no exception. In a key passage on the Eurozone debt crisis, Biden referred to Portugal, as Poland, a mistake subsequently corrected in the official White House transcript:We have seen positive steps recently to address the eurozone crisis, with the European Central Bank pledging to stand behind countries willing to launch reforms, and with Greece, Ireland, Poland [sic, Portugal], Spain and Italy all taking important steps to put their economies on a sounder path.
This is a prepared speech. It need only be read. It is thought to be idiot-proof. [Pause.] It is not -- not idiot-proof.
SOMEWHERE IN EUROPA
Everywhere A State Of Mind
Needless to say [Ed.: Except for the benefit of the VP.], Poland is not even a member of the Eurozone, and its economy is in considerably better shape than that of debt-ridden Portugal. Biden's blunder is the latest in a series of Obama presidency insults relating to Poland. In May last year Barack Obama was strongly criticised by Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk after he described Nazi death camps during World War Two as "a Polish death camp".Tusk blasted Obama's statement for its "ignorance, lack of knowledge, (and) bad intentions". In 2010 Obama chose to play golf on the day of the funeral of the Polish President Lech Kaczynski, the Polish First Lady, and 94 senior officials who were killed in the Smolensk air disaster, an act that was viewed as deeply insensitive by many Poles. In addition, the Obama administration announced the cancellation of Third Site missile defences on September 17, 2009, which also happened to be the 70th anniversary of the Soviet invasion of Poland.
... Biden's confusion of Poland with Portugal also reflects the Obama administration's tendency to treat Europe as one large entity, rather than as a collection of nation states. In the eyes of the Obama presidency, the European Union is Europe, and the Eurozone is the EU. Washington has so much invested in advancing the European Project that it frequently fails to distinguish between key allies like Poland or Great Britain, and fair weather friends like France. Mr. Biden has demonstrated once again that he can be an embarrassment, both at home and abroad, while advancing a foreign policy that weakens, rather than strengthens U.S. interests.
This mistake doesn't register with many Americans, because many Americans think of Europa as a lump of homogeneous real estate with fun cities, expensive amenities, and poor plumbing. However, few Euros would miss that America's №2 didn't catch his obvious error.
Were Mr. Biden the foreign policy expert he advertises himself to be, he could tell PIIGS from Poles.
№2 without a clue.
February 03, 2013
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Paul Krugman V
Day 1,470 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,449 Days
January 31, 2013 (CNS News) - Responding to House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan's warning that if the federal government continues to run annual $1 trillion deficits we will eventually face a debt crisis, liberal economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman said Wednesday that that is not a legitimate worry because the U.S. government can always print money and weaken the buying power of the dollar.
Weakening the dollar, Krugman said, would be a good thing.
Mr. Krugman apparently belongs to the Weimar Republic School of Economics.
STOP THE PRESSES!
Gutenberg And The Billions-Press
CAPTION: "I Never Intended It For This!"
[Picture source: Simplicissimus, 1923]
Mr. Krugman said on C-SPAN’s Newsmakers:The United States is a country that has its own currency--can’t run out of cash because we print the money. If you even try to think what would happen--suppose that investors get down on the United States. Even so, that would weaken the dollar, not send interest rates soaring, and that would be good. That would help our exports.
Asked whether he thought the U.S. was "in danger of a collapse, a stall, a crisis," Mr. Krugman waved these pesky possibilities away.
No, there’s a whole bunch of reasons why that’s not true. First of all ... that trillion dollar deficit is overwhelmingly the result of a depressed economy, and when the economy’s depressed, it’s good to run a deficit. You don’t want the government to try and balance its budget right now.
It's not "a collapse, a stall, a crisis". It's a "depressed economy". That is some nuance. [Pause.] At some level Mr. Krugman knows that his prescription in present circumstances is no prescription, that he is only shoring up Messrs. Obama and Bernanke's ruinous policies (and here). But such is the life of the shill.
The nuance of national finances sooner or later hits up against the hard arithmetic of ordinary finances. The only survivor in such a collision is the arithmetic.
Here's what a government that "can always print money and weaken the buying power of the dollar" actually looks like.
ZIMBABWE'S INFLATION RATE SURGES TO
October 9, 2008 (Guardian)
January 30, 2013 (Guardian) - Two hundred and seventeen US dollars – the equivalent of £138. That is all that remains in the public account of the Zimbabwean government, a bewildered finance minister has announced.
The paltry amount cast doubt over claims of a slow economic recovery and raised fresh questions about the fate of the country's diamond revenues – officials say almost $685m worth were sold last year.
"Last week when we paid civil servants there was $217 [left] in government coffers," Tendai Biti, the finance minster, told journalists in the capital, Harare, on Tuesday, noting that some of them have healthier bank balances than the state. "The government finances are in a paralysis state at the present moment. We are failing to meet our targets."
Mr. Biti, no worries, just go back to printing more of Mr. Krugman's funny money!
ONE HUNDRED TRILLION DOLLARS
This Single Note Pays Off The United States' National Debt
With Trillions To Spare
[Picture source: Carine]
Q: At what point do we run out of money?
Well, I mean, we're out of money now.
Broke. The Krugman Solution -- get more broke.
January 29, 2013
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Karen Finney
Day 1,465 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,454 Days
Who is Karren Finney? According to Mediaite she is a "leading democratic [sic] strategist, MSNBC Political Analyst and columnist for The Hill, Karen Finney works with political and corporate clients in the United States and globally in the areas of political and communication strategy, message development, crisis communications, branding, and public affairs". Below, some of that deft
communication strategy message development crisis communications.
January 29, 2013 (Mediaite) - During a conversation about the Democratic Party's strategic ability to isolate Republicans as the conservative party makes an attempt to ingratiate themselves among Latino voters, MSNBC contributor and frequent guest host Karen Finney said that the Republican Party’s base will probably scuttle the party’s hopes of an electoral comeback among Hispanics. Ms. Finney:Those crazy crackers on the right, if they start with their very hateful language, that is going to kill them in the same way that they learned, at their little retreat, let's not talk about rape.
If you are a "crazy cracker" and mistook Ms. Finney's racial slur to be a racial slur, put away that hankie. It was only harmless alliteration that you misconstrued as "very hateful".
Finney took to her Twitter account following her appearance on Now to clarify [!] her remarks and apologize if they had offended any of MSNBC's viewers.
Like "nutty nigger", "stupid spic", "crazy chink" -- these are all fun alliterative epithets. The alliteration voids any racial content and just leaves the kooky fun.
Dear Ms. Finney is trying her darnedest to make clear what she meant, and "crackers" was "not meant as racial".
Ms. Finney hopes you are this stupid.
Ms. Finney made her remark in the context of a discussion about the Republican party and its base. Here she is describing that base on MSNBC Live with Martin Bashir, October 28, 2011:
One of the things about Herman Cain is, I think that he makes that white Republican base of the party feel okay, feel like they are not racist because they can like this guy. I think he giving that base a free pass. And I think they like him because they think he’s a black man who knows his place. And I know that’s harsh, but that’s how it sure seems to me.
"White Republican base of the party." "Crazy crackers." The fit is uncanny.
The problem for people who talk too much and try to be clever is the certainty that they will say stupid things. A professional makes a simple apology -- not confined to those offended, but to all, even to those who affirm the stupid thing said -- for saying the stupid thing because the thing said was stupid. End of story, move on to the next cable panel. Not Ms. Finney. The fault lies with you. You have missed her wit. Ms. Finney makes a non-apology to those who missed her wit, and pretends that wit was not based on a racial characterization, which elsewhere she witlessly, unequivocally identifies as racial.
Liberals forgive themselves their slips. But non-liberals who catch them out, why, they are not fit to criticize.
@mizb1974 Did you check out the page of the person with the nerve to criticize Karen though?— Only4RM (@Only4RM) January 29, 2013
January 27, 2013
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Début! Touré
Day 1,463 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,456 Days
MSNBC continues to be a rich field to mine the Big Stupid.
January 25, 2013 (Blaze) - During MSNBC's "The Cycle" on Friday, co-host Toure celebrated the 40th anniversary of the landmark Roe v. Wade decision to legalize abortion by telling the story of when he and an old girlfriend decided to have an abortion 15 years ago.
... He said he was extremely thankful abortion was an option because wasn't ready to be a dad and going through with the pregnancy would have just made "a mess of three lives" because she "wasn’t the one".
"I thank God and country that when I fell into a bad situation, abortion was there to save me and keep me on a path toward building a strong family I have now. And I pray that safety net stays in place," Toure said.
Being able to choose to have an abortion makes for a "stronger America", he concluded.
He wants you to know because of abortion things worked out for him. Although his girlfriend "wasn’t the one" he found her "the one" enough to have unprotected sex with her. Building on that irresponsibility, Touré recognized he wasn't ready to be a dad. That is most probably true, but not being ready did not disoblige him from being responsible. It is Touré's self-serving opinion that "going through with the pregnancy would have just made 'a mess of three lives'". The only certain "messed up life" was his baby's, who was denied life, which is "messed up" in extremis.
This is not so much hypocrisy as it is selfishness.
What is interesting here is liberals like Touré argue that abortion is not the taking of human life. If they were to concede that a human life indeed is taken, then premeditated abortion for personal convenience -- with no threat to the life of the mother -- becomes murder. Yet, here is Touré arguing his abortion affected three lives.
This is hypocrisy.
Abortion saved Touré from a bad situation and he's thankful to both God and country. There is nothing to thank God for, so that just leaves Roe v. Wade.
Happy birthday to Roe v. Wade—what's left of it: bit.ly/U0NCO8— Mother Jones (@MotherJones) January 22, 2013
The same people who condemned Bristol Palin as trailer trash for keeping her baby are celebrating the anniversary of Roe v. Wade. Ghouls.— Jim Treacher (@jtLOL) January 26, 2013
Convenient arguments for convenient abortions.
January 22, 2013
NYC Letter: Loser's Corner -- Dan Freeman
Day 1,458 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,461 Days
PAUL RYAN BOOED AT INAUGURATION
January 21, 2013 (TWS)
For the liberal cadres, there are no worthy opponents.
January 22, 2013 (NRO) - [A] lawyer in the Voting Section of the Department of Justice, Dan Freeman, proudly announced on his Facebook page that he “started the crowd booing when Paul Ryan came out” at the inauguration.
As I pointed out in my series of articles on hires at the Justice Department in 2011, co-authored with Christian Adams, Freeman is one of the very liberal lawyers hired by the Obama administration for a career civil-service position (not a political job).
Freeman was brought into the Voting Section "following a fellowship at the New York Civil Liberties Union. He previously interned at the ACLU, where he assisted the organization with its efforts to attack the Bush administration’s national security policies. He also helped to challenge the 'state secrets privilege' and to support the rights of terrorist detainees at Guantanamo Bay during an internship at Human Rights First. On his résumé, Freeman proudly notes his membership in the liberal American Constitution Society, as well as his service as co-chair of the Yale Law School Democrats."
Career civil-service jobs are supposed to be filled on a non-partisan basis, a rule ignored by this administration as the analysis of the résumés (include Freeman’s) of more than 100 highly partisan hires in the Civil Rights Division reveals.
This is particularly important at the Justice Department, which is the chief law-enforcement agency of the government and one of the most powerful agencies in the executive branch. ... Such abuses are particularly dangerous because of the enormous power wielded by department lawyers such as Freeman.
Freeman and his misbehavior at the inauguration (of which he is apparently proud) is just another example of how ideological the lawyers are these days at the Justice Department.
The inauguration is not a campaign event where any and all can gather to boo or cheer. The inauguration officially closes the campaign. There are no more challenges for the office and the winner takes his prize. This has escaped Mr. Freeman, so he jazzes his huddle to boo the defeated Mr. Ryan. To what end? To Mr. Freeman's unintended end of revealing himself as a jackass. And as is the wont of jackasses he takes pains to advertise his jackassery.
The guy that started the Paul Ryan booing has apparently deleted his twitter account -> @danjfreeman— Ben Howe (@BenHowe) January 22, 2013
Oh, Mr. Freeman's little epiphany on professional conduct.
"I won." Oh, and "BOOOOO!" Yeah.
January 13, 2013
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Début! Ed Schultz
Day 1,449 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,470 Days
Ed Schultz is a conservative-turned-liberal radio and lesser-television personality. He has been the subject of posts in the past (and here, second item). Mr. Schultz has piled up so many stupidities lately that it would be a dereliction not to enroll him as a Big Stupid. And we do so.
January 7, 2013 (NewsBusters) - On his radio show Friday, Schultz got on the wrong side of an argument with a better informed caller. Naturally, Schultz couldn't resist hanging up on the man and labeling him an idiot.CALLER: I am sure Bill Clinton broke a workplace law...
SCHULTZ: No! No! No! No! No, I don't want to talk about Cli-, I want to talk about, Clint, this is not, you brought up three examples of Democrats and I answered to that. Point in case -- (brief glitch in broadcast)
CALLER: ...bring into question your judgment.
SCHULTZ: He was impeached for that and the opposing party decided not to try him in the Senate. Correct?
CALLER: He stayed in a position of --
SCHULTZ: No, I'm just, no, wait a minute! See, I'm putting out facts and you won't even come clean on the facts.
CALLER: I am putting out facts, Ed!
SCHULTZ: No, you're not! (crosstalk) Was, was Bill Clinton tried in the Senate, yes or no?
CALLER: He was! He still stayed in a position of authority.
SCHULTZ: No. No, no, no. (crosstalk) You don't have to get your blood pressure up, Clint, just because you're wrong on this.
CALLER: No, I'm not!
SCHULTZ: Here's the bottom line, here's the bottom line.
CALLER: You are a hypocrite and a liar.
SCHULTZ: No. Oh, I'm a liar? OK, so I guess, so I guess Bill Clinton did get tried in the Senate. OK, you're rewriting the history books which your side does a helluva job, yes you are! Yes you are! (crosstalk) He was never tried in the Senate. Thank you, Clint, you're an idiot. (hangs up on caller, gives phone-in number). The reason why I call him an idiot is because he's trying to rewrite history! Correct me if I'm wrong! Correct me if I'm wrong! Clinton wasn't tried in the Senate. He was impeached in the House and it stopped there.
Really a thing of terrible beauty, don't you think? Not only is Schultz indisputably wrong, and over the airwaves at that, he becomes bellicose in the process. For those unfamiliar with him, you've just encountered the quintessence of the man.
The Clinton trial and acquittal was front-page round-the-clock news. Mr. Schultz is simply breathtaking in his ignorance, comical in his insistence.
January 7, 2013 (NewsBusters) - On that same radio broadcast [see above], Schultz dug deep to reveal he's not equipped to render a valid opinion about, well, just about anything...(h/t, audio, Brian Maloney at mrctv.org):The gun laws and the gun violence in Chicago is a helluva lot different than it is in New York City. There's [sic] two different worlds when it comes to gun violence, it's not even close. New York City is not, you know, an all-safe zone or what not, I'm not trying to make that case. But a city that has got strict, the strictest gun laws in America put forth by Mayor Bloomberg, versus the gun laws that apparently don't even exist in Chicago,* you've got two totally different numbers when it comes to lives lost.
... Remarkably, despite his decades of experience in media, Schultz keeps missing the common denominator in stories about homicides in Chicago, that the endless shootings always seem to occur despite the city's "tough gun laws". If that's not mentioned, a variation will be cited, that of Chicago having "some of the toughest gun laws" in the country.
... According to Breitbart reporter Awr Hawkins, 10 people were shot in Chicago, "the gun control capital of the United States," over the weekend. Two of them did not survive. "Just think," Hawkins writes, "this is all happening in the city Obama is using as a blueprint for gun control measures he wants to impose on the United States as a whole."
And building on a theme...
'WE'VE NEVER HAD A CIVILIAN STOP A SHOOTING'
By Jack Coleman
January 11, 2013 (NewsBusters) - Schultz is tripling down on his ignorance, making an egregiously false claim on his radio show yesterday while talking about whether schools should allow teachers to arm themselves (h/t for embedded audio clip, Brian Maloney at mrctv.org):Would it be a deterrent if, you know, say perpetrators know that there's guns in the schools? How do we know they wouldn't view that as a challenge? I mean, we got a goofy world out there. I'm just not convinced that packing a small firearm is the best defense or certainly not the best defense. You know, you want to make the best defense? Make the school a damn fortress. I mean, you could do that, I mean but, is that reasonable? Is that the right thing to do? Is it necessary? And so I'm just, is it nec-, haven't we had enough school shootings where this is necessary? We've never had a civilian stop a shooting.
... Typical of Schultz, he cited no attribution for his dubious claim but it most likely originated with a report issued by Mother Jones magazine last month after the Sandy Hook massacre.In the wake of the slaughters this summer at a Colorado movie theater and a Sikh temple in Wisconsin, we set out to track mass shootings in the United States over the last 30 years. We identified and analyzed 62 of them, and one striking pattern is this: In not a single case was the killing stopped by a civilian using a gun.
The assertion was quickly dismantled by Mark Hemingway at The Weekly Standard, who pointed out that "when armed civilians are present, they often stop mass shootings before they can become mass shootings." Hemingway also noted that Mother Jones' reseach was limited to incidents in which a shooter killed at least four people, a baseline which allowed the magazine to overlook numerous incidents in which armed civilians prevented shooting rampages from becoming far worse. [Mr. Hemingway goes on to cite six examples.]
OK, all right, let me, let me back up a little bit. Respectfully, the founding fathers aren't here anymore. We are the founding fathers of this country now. Things change in America. Social mores change, attitudes change, habits change, the way we think change (sic), technology is changing. The idea that we need to be stuck in the mud of a different generation because some dead people think that's the way we oughta live 200 and some odd years later, I'm not there. I'm not there.
... I hope I didn't lose a listener there, but I think we have to drag ourselves into this century. How many souls have to be lost, how much do we need to be shaken between our ears to understand that the Second Amendment doesn't apply today. Not with the technology that we have. We have to adjust our Constitution to society. They didn't have the recognition of gay marriage back with our founding fathers. They had black people as slaves! We have evolved as a country on so many things. We need to evolve on firearms!
That night on his television show Mr. Schultz improved his rehearsed remarks with a contemptuous tone:
[Tonight is] a time we as a people come to grips with a changing society. We need to be the Founding Fathers on how we deal with the sickness in our country called 'gun violence'. Hiding behind the Second Amendment doesn’t cut it anymore. Hiding behind the Second Amendment can no longer be the shield for access. The people who wrote that document owned slaves, oppressed women, and were short on tolerance.
Mr. Schultz revisited his complaint with the Constitution last week:
It’s not just laws, it is a societal problem. But we have to take the step forward and do something right. I’m a sportsman. I’ve hunted for over 35 years. Do I look like a guy who wants to see my firearms and my freedoms being taken away? No, of course not. But there are sensible laws.
No, of course not. Mr. Schultz wants to see your firearms and your freedoms being taken away.
You know, we’re right now operating on a document that is archaic in many ways.
Finally there is this from his December 14 radio show:
I'm beyond that [scil., good people with guns stop bad people with guns]. I can't, I can't, I can't consume that anymore, respectfully. We're beyond that conversation. We're beyond that point in America. We need to do something and you know what? I would rather do something and err on the part of doing something than err on the part of not doing something.
When Mr. Schultz and his fellow travelers offer to "drag ourselves into this century", "take the step forward and do something right", "err on the part of doing something than err on the part of not doing something" on guns -- in all of these there is a presumption that they know better than you. They may be wholly ignorant on the issue, but still they know better.
"Correct me if I'm wrong! Correct me if I'm wrong!"
* Allahpundit at Hot Air tries to give Mr. Schultz a nobody's-this-stupid assist:
So I'm thinking, maybe he was just being sarcastic? I.e. he's saying gun laws "apparently don’t even exist in Chicago" because he thinks the cops have done such a terrible job enforcing them and getting guns off the street? He can't possibly have meant it the way this sounds. Dude?
December 13, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Hank Johnson Redux
Day 1,418 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,501 Days
Last month reviewing the campaign season John Ellis observed:
Basically, every two years, the American political parties and their candidates tell the electorate that politics is a filthy, rotten, corrupt business filled with lying weasels and thieving scoundrels. ... Combined with a malignantly intrusive and increasingly reckless media, the net effect is to make any sensible person avoid political life at all costs. Talent goes elsewhere. The political system suffers. It’s bad and it’s getting worse. The quality of congressional representation in Washington has declined precipitously.
There is no dearth of exhibits for Mr. Ellis's proposition. With quality talent staying out of politics, politics becomes central casting for the talentless -- sure things, hacks, and screamers. Our exhibit today: Hank "Keeping Guam Afloat" Johnson.
December 13, 2012 (Mediaite) - In a somewhat verbose apology speech on the House floor this afternoon, [Hank Johnson (D-GA, 4th)] the Georgia-based congressman apologized for rhetorically asking yesterday: "What happens when you put a giant with a midget in a cage fight?" He was using the "m-word" to describe how unfair a fight he felt the Michigan unions faced against the forces in favor of a "right-to-work" state.
Be warned, the ooze of political correctness ahead.
Mr. Johnson:Last night I used an analogy that some find offensive. And I certainly was not meaning to be offensive or use a derogatory term. ... You know, everybody knows what the 'n-word' is ... We don’t say the 'n-word', we say, we refer to that word as the 'n-word'. I had never heard of the [Emphasis.] 'm-word'.
"We don’t say the 'n-word', we say, we refer to that word as the 'n-word'." Brilliant. Brilliant stuff.
Mr. Johnson continues:The 'm-word'. Ah, it's a word also that describes ah a group of people. And duh-aah, it at one time has been commonly used as a descriptive term. Ah, it was at one time socially acceptable. Ah. But to my discovery, ah, just within the last 12 hours or so, I have found that the use of the midget -- ah, excuse me -- the use of the 'm-word' is no longer socially acceptable. Now, the 'm-word' refers to a group of people, the little people. And but, when we say little people, I’m not talking about the Helmsley little people. I’m not talking about the 47%. I’m not talking about the takers instead of the makers as some would describe them. I’m not talking about the middle class, working people, poor people, working poor people -- that's not what is meant by the little, the little people term. It really refers to a medical condition, dwarfism is the name of that medical condition, and sometimes I guess one can even say abnormally small people, abnormally small people which is to me is -- I like that term better than dwarfism.
Hey, abnormally small people, sorry about calling you midgets.
I wanted to say to all of those who may have been offended by my use of the term the 'm-word', I want you to know that it was out of ignorance and not spite or hatred that I used that term and please know that I will never use that term again. I will never use that term again.
Jan Schakowsky (D-IL, 9th) interjects:[Inaudible.] -- to, ah, make people understand that, um, there are those who are deeply offended by it and that we should all learn, um, what to say so as not to defend, ah, offend people.
Because Ms. Schakowsky is the last person to offend anyone.
Mr. Johnson gives a redemptive summation:
It’s a learning moment for me and perhaps many others out there. But I'll tell you, if you want to find out more about little people -- or abnormally small people or unusually small people -- there's a Web site... I have been awakened to, ah, the sensitivities involved and, ah, so anyone who I offended [Hand over heart.] has my deepest apology. [Emphasis.] But --
Stop, Hank. Don't spoil the magic. Too late.
-- the analogy that I used, even though it used the wrong wording, ah, was, ah, was a great analogy in my personal opinion.
Hank has found his audience. Let's take a look at the politically corrected analogy: "What happens when you put a giant with an abnormally small person, an unusually small person in a cage fight?" Like ketchup, political correctness improves everything.
Video at the headline link. Mr. Johnson's horror and remorse at having descended through ignorance into the depths of political incorrectness produces unintended hilarity throughout, but you need to watch the video for the surreality of the establishment shot at 04:29. The wide-shot reveals Mr. Johnson delivering his mea máxima culpa to an empty house. Other than Ms. Schakowsky at the lectern, there are only the stenographer and, we imagine off-camera, any presiding House officials whose office obliges attendance. It has all the intimacy of an airplane-hangar-qua-confessional.
Apparently some midgets (not all, and here) take offense at the term midget. Some bald men take offense at being called bald, some fat people fat, short people short, stupid people stupid, and dead people registered Democrats. A politically correct label does not give the bald man bangs, slim the fatty, stretch the shorty, or put the dead beyond the pall of voter fraud. Politically correct labels for these folk remedy no wrongs, if indeed there are any wrongs to be remedied. Politically correct labels reveal an obsession with normalizing what is different.
The politically correct try to refashion what is different into themselves, something that they find less threatening, less complex, less not like them. It is a wholly dishonest project based on a dishonest call to sensitivity. The sensitivity being assuaged here is not that of the abnormal. It is the fear of the normal for the abnormal. The secondary purpose is to vitiate those who do not share the deep-seated fears behind political correctness. If you recognize differences among people in appearance or aptitude or behavior, that would be you.
December 04, 2012
NYC Letter: Aritmetic Ist Schwer, Début! -- Sheila Jackson Lee
Day 1,409 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,510 Days
Nothing makes a headline like a big money number.
December 4, 2012 (WFB) - Representative Sheila Jackson Lee (D- TX, 18th) claimed that the United States had a $5.6 trillion surplus at the end of the Clinton administration Tuesday. Ms. Jackson, in the interview while discussing fiscal cliff negotiations:Remember, we had a $5.6 trillion surplus in 2000 – 2001 from the Clinton administration.
However, according to CNN Money, the "Treasury Department reported a budget surplus...of $127 billion" for fiscal year 2001 and a $237 billion surplus for fiscal year 2000.
That's $5,236B shy of Ms. Jackson Lee's brag, a margin of error of 1,540%. Even by Democrat standards of arithmetic competence that's some MOE.
Ms. Jackson Lee has been serving the 18th CD since 1995. That suggests she had a passing acquaintance with the nation's finances at the time. At the least she would be aware of the party-line brag for Mr. Clinton's surpluses.
WASHINGTON December 28, 2000 (ABC News) - President Clinton today projected that the United States will have a $1.9 trillion budget surplus over the next decade. He said the increase in the expected surplus means the government will be debt-free by 2010.
During GWB's presidency Democrats were all for honest budgetry. We, too, support honest budgetry with the single difference that we support it on principle not on party circumstances. Honest budgetry lets even more air out of Ms. Jackson Lee's Clinton surplus party balloon.
Other readers have noted a USA Today story stating that, under an alternative type of accounting, the final four years of the Clinton administration taken together would have shown a deficit. This is based on an annual document called the Financial Report of the U.S. Government, which reports what the governments books would look like if kept on an accrual basis like those of most corporations, rather than the cash basis that the government has always used. The principal difference is that under accrual accounting the government would book immediately the costs of promises made to pay future benefits to government workers and Social Security and Medicare beneficiaries. But even under accrual accounting, the annual reports showed surpluses of $69.2 billion in fiscal 1998, $76.9 billion in fiscal 1999, and $46 billion for fiscal year 2000. So even if the government had been using that form of accounting the deficit would have been erased for those three years.
To spare Ms. Jackson Lee, that's $192.1B of Clinton surpluses. That pushes her MOE up to 2,915%.
Bad arithmetic. Stick to it.
November 08, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- The Left's Hurricane Patriots
Day 1,383 of CHOPE
D-minus 1,536 Days
Stick with us on this. To appreciate the bigness of today's Big Stupids you need a glancing appreciation of the enormity of the human toll wrought by Hurricane Sandy.
Hurricane Sandy was the largest Atlantic hurricane on record, with winds reaching 110mph and a 13-foot storm surge. It claimed 185 fatalities over its own short 9-day life and caused upwards of $52B in damage.
AT LEAST 16 DEAD
AFTER SANDY DEVASTATES NEW JERSEY,
SWAMPS LOWER MANHATTAN
October 29, 2012 (WaPo)
HURRICANE SANDY DEATH TOLL
CLIMBS ABOVE 110,
N.Y. HARDEST HIT
November 3, 2012 (LAT)
HURRICANE SANDY DEATHS:
STORM WAS CRUEL TO
NEW YORK'S ELDERLY
November 3, 2012 (HuffPo)
MISERY FOR 2.5 MILLION STILL WITHOUT POWER
AFTER SIX DAYS AS LAWLESSNESS AND FEAR
TAKE OVER NEW YORK'S OUTER BOROUGHS
Residents Claim They Are The
'Forgotten Victims' Of Sandy
November 3, 2012 (Daily Mail)
A WEEK AFTER HURRICANE SANDY
LOOTING IN STATEN ISLAND CONTINUES
November 5, 2012 (PIX11)
Hurricane Sandy is pretty bad [We nod in respectful silence.], but pretty dang good if you are an Obama supporter! First up, Chris "Final Jeopardy!" Matthews:*
November 7, 2012 (TDC) - The untold damage from last week’s storm Hurricane Sandy is estimated to ultimately cost billions of dollars. But there is a silver-lining in it at least for MSNBC Hardball host Chris Matthews.
As Rachel Maddow, the anchor for MSNBC's presidential election coverage, was signing off for the evening, Matthews took a moment to say he was proud of the country.I'm so glad we had that storm last week because I think the storm was one of those things -- no, politically I should say. Not in terms of hurting people. The storm brought in possibilities for good politics.
The New York Post does the carve-up:
Is there a smaller, more unprincipled man in the national political debate than Chris Matthews of MSNBC?
No, there is not.
Bereft of decency and devoid of soul, what mattered most for Matthews is that his candidate -- in this case, President Obama -- somehow was boosted over the top.
... Matthews says he grew up on the Jersey Shore — as savagely hit by Sandy as any region along its devastating path. Empathy? From this pinched little man? Hardly.
For he’s moved on.
Matthews lives in the very rich and overwhelmingly white Maryland township of Chevy Chase -- which makes his pious sermonizing about GOP "elitism" just another bucket of moral bilge.
A rung or two below Mr. Matthews on the bottom rungs of public opinion, is Oscar winner Michael Moore:
November 7, 2012 (WaEx) - This morning, liberal filmmaker Michael Moore wrote a joyful blogpost this morning celebrating President Obama’s victory.
In his post, he thanked a number of people who helped make the president’s re-election possible, especially "Mother Nature". Referring to Hurricane Sandy that hit the East Coast before the election, Moore wrote:You, Mother Nature, with all your horrific damage, death and destruction you caused last week, you became, ironically, the undoing of a Party that didn’t believe in you or your climate changing powers.
Several dozen rungs below Mr. Moore is MSNBC host Alex Wagner:
MSNBC HOST: OBAMA HAD A
'REALLY GOOD WEEK'
Alex Wagner High On Obama's Week After
Hurricane Sandy Devastates NY, NJ
November 2, 2012 (WFB)
Watch the video at the headline link. Ms. Wagner is pretty juiced about Mr. Obama's "really good week", wherein she shapes a multi-state disaster into Campaign Barry talking points. Messrs. Matthews and Moore and Ms. Wagner are boosting their candidate, all well and good, but they might want to dial back the gush that celebrates ends while pointedly ignoring the means.
Politicians help themselves when they do their job well. Mr. Obama conferred with FEMA, sat in its big situation room to be photographed, and made a celebrated trip to New Jersey for a disaster walk-around with Republican governor Chris Christie. This chewed up three days of his campaign schedule but produced panegyrical headlines, op-ed laudations, and non-stop TV gush straight through the election. Mr. Obama was on the job! -- as things got worse and worse in New York and New Jersey.
GIULIANI: WHERE THE HELL
ARE THE GENERATORS?
BLOG November 5, 2012 (Hot Air)
FEMA DIRECTOR BLOGS SANDY SURVIVORS
SHOULD APPLY FOR HELP ONLINE –
ALMOST ONE MILLION STILL WITHOUT POWER
November 7, 2012 (CNS News)
BAD SIGN: FEMA OFFICE ON
STATEN ISLAND CLOSES
'DUE TO WEATHER'
November 8, 2012 (NYPost)
So. Mr. Obama overseeing FEMA produced nothing better than an Inspector Clouseau response. Red tape and processing and confusion remain back-page stories, while Mr. Obama is feted with front-page headlines.
Here is what Messrs. Matthews and Moore and Ms. Wagner dare not say -- Sandy gave the press cover for continuing to ignore Benghazi before the election. And that gave Mr. Obama a "really good week".
The important thing, Mr. Obama had a good week. Really good.
* Mr. Matthews later apologized for his glee.
October 31, 2012
NYC Letter: OK-By-Me Racism -- James Lowery
Day 1,375 of CHOPE
D-minus 81 Days
On day one of the post-racial presidency, a big hint was dropped about what it was going to look like.
On January 20, 2009 at 12:32A Rev. Dr. Joseph Lowery took the podium to deliver the inaugural benediction. Dr. Lowery is a venerated old guard civil rights figure, who, without the tempering leadership of MLK, has assumed the "bitter black man" persona epitomized by Jesse Jackson. The benediction began as the standard hodgepodge of petitions to the Almighty suitable for state occasions and luncheons, then it lurched into racial parody.
LOWERY: Lord, in the memory of all the saints who from their labors rest, and in the joy of a new beginning, we ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get back, when brown can stick around...
... when yellow will be mellow...
... when the red man can get ahead, man; and when white will embrace what is right. That all those who do justice and love mercy say Amen.
LOWERY: Say Amen.
LOWERY: And Amen.
Amen, indeed. There was no laughter after the petition for a time "when white will embrace what is right" because that's just not funny. [Hard sigh.] Not for nothing, but had "white" not already embraced what is right, it's unlikely Dr. Lowery would be doing inaugural schtick. Michelle Malkin points to this song by Big Bill Broonzy (1903-1958) as Dr. Lowery's model. While Big Bill sung about his times, Dr. Lowery retrofits the present to relive his past grievances.
We will interlard bracketed snippets of Dr. Lowery's benediction as our story develops below.
CIVIL RIGHTS ICONS
PUMP OBAMA IN FORSYTH
Lowery: Don't Think Whites Going To Heaven
FORSYTH, Georgia October 31, 2012 (MCR) - Two icons of the civil rights movement visited Forsyth on Saturday to campaign for the reelection of Barack Obama. Andrew Young and Rev. Dr. James [sic] Lowery spoke at St. James Baptist Church as part of a Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) tour across Georgia to encourage black voters to cast ballots for Obama.
... Lowery said Obama lost Georgia by 200,000 votes in 2008 while 390,000 black folks in Georgia did not vote. Dr. Lowery:I don't know what kind of a n----- wouldn't vote with a black man running. All that he did with the stimulus was genius. Nobody intelligent would risk this country with Romney.
[...we seek forgiveness and we come in a spirit of unity and solidarity...to turn to each other and not on each other.]
... Lowery said that when he was a young militant, he used to say all white folks were going to hell. Then he mellowed and just said most of them were. Now, he said, he is back to where he was.
[And now, Lord, in the complex arena of human relations, help us to make choices on the side of love, not hate; on the side of inclusion, not exclusion; tolerance, not intolerance.]
"I'm frightened by the level of hatred and bitterness coming out in this election," said Lowery.
Alas, we seriously doubt that Dr. Lowery is here gazing back from the mirror.
Forsyth Mayor John Howard, a member of St. James who opened Saturday's program, said he was "pretty shocked" by Lowery's comments. He said if a speaker had made the same comments about black people, he would have gotten up and left.
He said the Bible gives set instructions on how to go to heaven and it doesn't say anything about skin color. Hearing the comments he said he looked at the face of his pastor, the Rev. Antonio Proctor, and could tell he was real shocked too. Howard said he and Proctor talked about putting a video of the event on Forsyth Cable TV but decided after his comments that it wasn't a good idea.
Whew! Luckily Mayor Howard doesn't take offense on principle. Still, kudos on his not mistaking a bad idea for a good idea.
Jim Treacher at The Daily Caller has more:
Hat tip to the Georgia Tipsheet, which notes that last week, Lowery said: "If Obama was white, there would be no question on who was going to win."
Out: "America is too racist to elect a black man."
In: "America is too racist to re-elect a black man!"
You failed the test, All White People in America. That’s what you get for judging Obama by the content of his character. Enjoy the lake of fire.
As noted in the headline above, Dr. Lowery is a civil rights icon. Though he freely spouts racist views, he is not held to account because of the unassailable protections that come with civil rights iconography. It's pointless to remark that these same views applied to blacks and put in the mouth of any white person would be immediately condemned as racist. Pointless. Pointless because racism as it is properly understood is not the point. It is not the point because the left has conferred on itself immunity from the charge of racism. That leaves only the politically deviant susceptible to the charge. For example, were the left to take notice, it would deem this post racist. Not because, unlike Dr. Lowery, we advance any preferential notions based on race, but because we dare criticize a black civil rights icon who consistently cites race above reason.
Alleging racism is the left's weapon of choice to marginalize its critics. If you challenge its use of that weapon, expect to be on the receiving end of same.
Post-racial presidency backslides from pre-post-racial presidencies.
October 27, 2012
NYC Letter: Joe Biden Is An Idiot XXV -- "Big Fan"
Day 1,371 of CHOPE
D-minus 85 Days
- fan (făn) n.: An ardent devotee; an enthusiast. [Short for fanatic.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
The bare minimum of fandom is that the fan know the name of the someone the fan is a fan of.
LYNCHBURG, Virginia October 27, 2012 (WaEx) - Vice President Joe Biden twice declared his support for "Tom Kaine" during a campaign rally today when he was trying to praise Tim Kaine, the Democratic Senate nominee in Virginia. Biden began well enough:It’s good to be in a state that’s going to be represented by Tim Kaine.
And then things got shaky.I’m a big Tom Kaine fan -- a big Tom Kaine fan. [Said twice for emphasis.]
The crowd applauded.
What else could they do? That's what people who attend rallies do.
Then-Sen. Obama’s campaign team was also a big Tim Kaine fan in 2008. So much so that they almost chose him as Obama’s running mate instead of Biden.
"[I]t was clear that if we picked [Biden], we would suffer a few self-inflicted wounds," Obama’s 2008 campaign manager David Plouffe wrote in The Audacity to Win.
A few? This is the twenty-fifth post in a series devoted to the vice president's "self-afflictions". There are more. Site search "Joe On The Job" and "The Greats Of Political Whoredom -- Joe Biden" or just "Joe Biden". Truth be told, we don't even try. We do but the occasional dip in the plentitude of Bidenisms. To report them all would overwhelm our capacities.
This small slip -- in conjunction with an extensive history of small and big slips -- shows Mr. Biden not to be a fan at all, just a hack politician giving a perfunctory read from the day's script pushed under his nose. And that speaks to Mr. Biden's insincerity, which bespeaks a lifetime of political hackery.
Were Mr. Biden just a bumbling bumbly bumbler, we wouldn't bother with his bumbling. But Mr. Biden through circumstance and the abysmal judgment of his boss is positioned -- first in line -- to take up the reins of the presidency should Mr. Obama be incapacitated. First in line.
The nation headed by Joe Biden [Frisson.] that is a thought too horrible to think.
"A big [Your name here.] fan -- a big [Your name here.] fan.
ALMOST INSTANT UPDATE: Bonus Bidenism!
BIDEN ACCUSES ROMNEY-RYAN OF
$500 TRILLION TAX CUT!
OSHKOSH, Wisconsin October 26, 2012 (FNC)
Thanks to the VPOTUS for the shout out today. I love Jay Biden!— Gov. Tim Kaine (@timkaine) October 27, 2012
October 26, 2012
NYC Letter: Joe Biden Is An Idiot XXIV -- Cue Ball
Day 1,370 of CHOPE
D-minus 86 Days
A certain sobriety attends the funereal duties of high office. The state receives back its dead with utmost decorum, with solemnity.
Former Navy SEAL Tyrone Woods, 41, was one of four Americans killed in the terrorist attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi. His body was returned stateside September 14, 2012, arriving at Joint Base Andrews (the former Andrews Air Force Base) where Mr. Obama, SOS HRC, and Joe Biden condoled with the family.
October 25, 2012 (Blaze) - The father of one of the former Navy SEALs killed in the terrorist attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya says President Barack Obama wouldn’t even look him in the eye and Vice President Joe Biden was disrespectful during the ceremony when his son’s body returned to America.
... Vice President Biden, as he has become known to do, reportedly made a wildly inappropriate comment to the father who had just lost his hero son.
Woods said Biden came over to his family and asked in a "loud and boisterous" voice, "Did your son always have balls the size of cue balls?"
This is the Joe Biden schtick, a small-time politician trapped inside the vice presidency. The press finds it amusing when it is not outright obnoxious. When it is obnoxious, the press blows it off as "Joe being Joe" or ignores it entirely. You might think all this bearable in a vice president. You might, until Mr. Biden drops by to offer you his sympathies.
January 20th can't come soon enough.
October 25, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Début! John Kerry
Day 1,369 of CHOPE
D-minus 87 Days
It takes a Big Stupid to breath new life into an old stupid laid to rest.
JOHN KERRY, SELF-EXONERATED FORENSIC PUGILIST
It Was The Thin Air Of Confidence
[Picture source: Weasel Zippers]
Debate sparring partner John Kerry, who played a Romney caricature for Mr. Obama's debate prep, has struggled to understand Mr. Obama's poor performance. The problem, as Mr. Kerry sees it, was not Mr. Kerry's aping the Romney of OFA and DNC attack ads only to have Mr. Obama disarmed by the real Mr. Romney.
BLAME OBAMA'S LOUSY
DEBATE ON JOHN KERRY!
Obama’s Tepid Debate Performance
Isn’t Entirely His Fault
By Matt Latimer
October 5, 2012 (TDB)
EXCUSES, EXCUSES: GORE BLAMES ALTITUDE
FOR OBAMA DEBATE PERFORMANCE
October 4, 2012 (ABC News)
Well, you can't blame altitude on John Kerry. So 3 weeks after the fact and 10 days out from the election, Mr. Kerry takes the opportunity to remind everyone about Mr. Obama's big fail, to make sure everyone understands it wasn't John Kerry who came up short.
October 25, 2012 (The Hill) - Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) joined Al Gore this week in blaming Denver's high altitude for President Obama's poor performance in the first presidential debate.
"I personally really do believe that the altitude may have had something to do with it," Kerry told the Sante Fe New Mexican.
Gore previously blamed the high altitude for Obama's showing, a claim mocked widely by Republicans and comedians.
To dispel any lingering doubt about Mr. Kerry's exemplary forensic prep, Mr. Kerry, loyal wingman, dumps the blame entirely on Mr. Obama.
Kerry also attributed Obama's "bad night" to indecision on his strategy for his first match-up with GOP nominee Mitt Romney.
"I … think he wasn't settled in his own mind completely on his own strategy," Kerry said. "And I think that held him back. I was surprised, obviously."
Kerry, who played Romney in mock debates against the president, seemed to imply that Obama might have been considering other last-minute approaches to the first debate, since Obama had been on his game the night before.
"I thought we had a terrific night the night before when we went through it all, and everybody was a little surprised, and he was surprised," Kerry said. "But look at what he did. He came back and he won both [subsequent debates] convincingly and he won the last one more convincingly than Romney won [the first] one."
Mr. Kerry makes this last claim based on -- nothing. But he makes the claim confident that the Sante Fe New Mexican will not challenge it, which it doesn't. The paper just passes it along to its readers as fact. [Pause.] Let's look at that third debate.
GALLUP: VIEWERS DEEM OBAMA WINNER
OF THIRD DEBATE, 56% TO 33%
POLL October 25, 2012 (Gallup)
OK. And now that first debate.
POLL October 8, 2012 (Gallup) - An Oct. 4-5 Gallup poll finds roughly two in three Americans reporting that they watched the Oct. 3 debate, similar to what Gallup measured for each of the three 2008 presidential debates. Those who viewed the debate overwhelmingly believe Romney did a better job than Obama, 72% to 20%. Republicans were nearly unanimous in judging Romney the winner. But even Democrats rated Romney as doing a better job than Obama, 49% to 39%.
... Gallup has assessed opinion on who did better in most past presidential debates. ... Across all of the various debate-reaction polls Gallup has conducted, Romney's 52-point win is the largest Gallup has measured.
Only in Mr. Kerry's world, which is the Wishing-Barry-Back-In-Office world, does a 23% margin of victory surpass a historic 52% margin of victory. Woe upon woe, Mr. Kerry is sure to be disappointed to learn that Mr. Obama's purported two-out-of-three wins were not "convincing" enough to win the debate series.
POLL October 25, 2012 (Rasmussen) - Most voters consider the three presidential debates at least somewhat important to how they will vote, and a plurality of those that watched thinks Mitt Romney was the overall debate winner.
Down in the polls isn't the worst of it. The experience of being a pretend Romney has spiritually tainted Mr. Kerry, tainted his very being.
October 17, 2012 (Politico) - Sen. John Kerry joked Wednesday that he’ll need an "exorcism" after the final debate next week to purge Mitt Romney after playing the GOP presidential nominee for weeks in debate prep with President Barack Obama. Mr. Kerry on MSNBC’s Morning Joe:It’s been an interesting exercise. I’ve decided next Tuesday I’ve got to have an exorcism of Romney out of my being.
Just don't blame John Kerry.
October 23, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Chris Matthews Redux
Day 1,367 of CHOPE
D-minus 89 Days
On any given day MSNBC Hardball host Chris Matthews is in contention for "Today's Big Stupid", but, as we remarked Friday, as Big Stupids go, he's not very inspired. However when circumstances so conspire, when the stars are banjaxed just so, he is lifted into the thin air of exalted Big Stupid. Today is such a day.
October 22, 2012 (NewsBusters) - Going around the rope line at the bottom of his 7 p.m. Eastern edition of Monday's Hardball to ask folks whom they are supporting in the presidential race, Chris Matthews found a young man who said he was backing Romney because, unlike Obama, "he doesn't cover up scandals in the Middle East."
"What was the scandal? Get to it, nail it, what was the scandal?!" Matthews rudely barked at the Romney backer. Upon [which] the young Romney supporter answered that he was referring to Benghazi and the administration's early dogged insistence that the fiasco was the result of a spontaneous demonstration over a YouTube video, Matthews barked back:Yeah, it was about the video. Read the newspaper. Thank you. Everybody knows it's about the video. It's all about the video.
On a tip from Instapundit, we instead sought out Mr. Matthews' parent company to straighten things out.
In this September 26, 2012 interview NBC correspondent Ann Curry does her best to bring Libyan President Mohamed Yousef el-Magariaf round to the Obama telling of events* in Benghazi on September 11 of this year. Mr. el-Magariaf rebuffs her leading questions severally throughout the interview.
Q: Would you call the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi an act of terrorism?
MR. EL-MAGARIAF: I have no doubt about that.
* * * * * *
Q: And you're saying that these [scil., mortars] were fired with such accuracy...
MR. EL-MAGARIAF: Yes.
Q: ...that this could not be done by someone who did not have experience?
MR. EL-MAGARIAF: [Brow lift.] Experience AND knew what he was doing.
Q: And this is what is helping convince you that this was a pre-planned attack? Not...
MR. EL-MAGARIAF: [Nods head affirmatively.] No doubt.
Q: ... a reaction to a controversial movie?
MR. EL-MAGARIAF: Yes. I have no doubt about this.
Q: Do you think this movie had ANYTHING to do [Incredulous head shake.] with the attack?
MR. EL-MAGARIAF: Not on this attack. Not on this attack. It has nothing to do with this attack.
We often marvel at Mr. Matthews' staying power in the competitive arena of opinion "journalism". He makes no pretense as a journalist. He is a shill, a say-anything shill. He never worries about being caught out as he is always several lies ahead of the last fact check. He shapes narratives that push the prejudices and fairy tales of his political brand. He has no real, no original opinions about events. His only identifiably original opinion is the one he holds of himself, which, no surprise, is immodestly flattering. When you need aggrandizement done right, do it yourself.
Mr. Matthews, watch your network. Thank you.
October 22, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Debbie Wasserman Schultz III
Day 1,366 of CHOPE
D-minus 90 Days
October 22, 2012 (Mediaite) - On Monday, MSNBC’s Chuck Todd sat down with DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Shultz in Florida, where he asked questions relating to tonight’s presidential debate on foreign policy, including one regarding her thoughts on what Mitt Romney will bring to the table that is different from what Obama has and will propose.*
Wasserman Schultz told Todd that Obama will "keep our eye on the prize" and protect America from harmful forces -- a contrast, she added, to the "backwards cowboy justice Mitt Romney would drag us back to". ... Then, moments later, she said that it is "unclear" what, exactly, Romney would do differently than Obama.
Todd immediately noted the contradiction, telling Wasserman Schultz that she’d just said two different things.
"And that’s the nature of Mitt Romney’s focus in foreign policy has been," she said. "Who knows what… he hasn't said what he would do differently. He has done a lot of bellicose chest-thumping."
Mr. Todd left unremarked DWS's odd lift of the civil rights anthem to oddly describe Mr. Obama's hunt & destroy counterterrorism.
Hackery is expected. It's the election season. The point of hackery is to make a simple case for the boss and semi-credibly trash the opposition, not make headlines as a double-talking know-nothing hack.
Todd pressed her to say whether she thought Romney would do things differently than Obama, to which she replied by saying she had "no idea". She later added, however, that Romney has "flirted" with the idea of engaging the U.S. in more military action.
Here is a woman who pretends total ignorance of Mr. Obama's extra-Constitutional "kill list" but warns of "backwards cowboy justice Mitt Romney would drag us back to" based on, well, nothing. She complains Mr. Romney has "flirted with the idea" of war, yet supports Mr. Obama who not only flirted, but expanded the war in Afghanistan into Pakistan, put together a Libyan war party,** is poised to unilaterally enter the conflict in Mali, has put American troops on the ground in Uganda, Jordan, and Yemen. She accuses Mr. Romney of doing "a lot of bellicose chest-thumping", yet she supports the President who incessantly brags on killing OBL in a grinding aggrandizing manner.
DWS is a hack. Everyone knows she's a hack. But even hackery has standards of persuasion. DWS can't be bothered with being even border-line persuasive. She's a hack who's lost the knack of the hack.
Managing to ataint an already ignoble profession.
* Transcript here.
** And may attack there again unilaterally.
UPDATE 10.22.12: A little bonus Big Stupid. Here is DWS tonight in the ABC spin room following the third presidential debate, which focused on foreign policy.
@ingrahamangle DWS on ABC just said No.1 BO foreign policy priority is "as president said, nation building at home." DGB— Damian Bennett (@DamianBennett) October 23, 2012
October 21, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Début! Anthony "Van" Jones
Day 1,365 of CHOPE
D-minus 91 Days
Another overdue début as Anthony "Van" Jones enters the Big Stupid rolls. [Heavy disappointed sigh.] What? You thought this was Debbie trifecta Sunday?*
President Obama is a towering figure on foreign policy. You got somebody with a Nobel Peace Prize and he killed bin Laden.
Off hand we can't think of any Nobel Peace Prizes awarded for killing anybody. Even the detestable. Mr. Jones squares that circle.
The Peace Prize Killer.
NYC Letter: Lying Or Not Even Trying? -- Debbie Wasserman Schultz III
Day 1,365 of CHOPE
D-minus 91 Days
Because she thinks you are this stupid.
GREENSBORO, North Carolina October 19, 2012 (WaEx) - A local FOX affiliate in Greensboro, NC asked DNC Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz on why Presisent Obama hasn’t personally campaigned in North Carolina.
Wasserman Schultz explained that they had surrogates campaigning "non-stop" for the president in the state, adding:This is a big country!
Today's event brings Pres Obama's rally count to 75 - 13 of them in Virginia. State with most rallies: you guessed it: Ohio at 18.— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) October 19, 2012
Perhaps Campaign Barry is employing its successful near-but-clear Wisconsin strategy. Or maybe Mr. Obama just has better things to do than campaign in North Carolina.
SUFFOLK POLLSTER: WE’RE NOT POLLING FLORIDA,
VIRGINIA, OR NORTH CAROLINA ANYMORE,
BECAUSE ROMNEY'S GOING TO WIN THEM
BLOG October 9, 2012 (Hot Air)
I've never seen anybody bury a lede like Major Garrett here. Real story is Team O quietly walking back FL NC VA CO. nationaljournal.com/politics/what-…— Jay Cost (@JayCostTWS) October 17, 2012
The latest numbers from RealClearPolitics have Mr. Romney up in North Carolina:
RCP Average: 10/6-10/17 | Romney 50.3%/Obama 44.7%
Spread +5.6 Romney
ROMNEY 52%, OBAMA 46%
POLL October 18, 2012 (Rasmussen)
MIDDLEBURG HEIGHTS, Ohio October 18, 2012 (CNN) - In a clear sign the campaign is confident about putting North Carolina back in the Republican column this year, Mitt Romney's campaign is moving its spokesman out of the state and plans to shift more staffers out in the coming days.
Mr. Obama was last seen in North Carolina during his re-anointment at the DNCC. But he'd really like to win North Carolina. Really badly. If only someone would gift-wrap it for him and stick it in the mail.
Q: Is North Carolina key to your retaining the presidency this time around?
Well, you know, ah, there are a lot of ways that we can win, but I just like North Carolina, so I want to win North Carolina really badly. Obviously, if we win North Carolina, I think we're in good shape for a second term. So we're going to fight for every vote down there.
fighting for every vote that doesn't
require too much effort
(July 9, 2012 RCP/WRAL-TV)
Don't strain yourself, Mr. President. It's a big country!
It's a small electoral map. And getting smaller.
October 19, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Lawrence O’Donnell Redux
Day 1,363 of CHOPE
D-minus 93 Days
We are asked, "Why not more Lawrence O'Donnell Big Stupids?" Of course Mr. O'Donnell is stupid. Plenty stupid. However, much like Chris Matthews, he is not always interestingly stupid. He is predictably stupid. He says all the stupid things you expect from a stupid person of his persuasion. His cable TV show gives his unremarkable stupidities greater reach, therefore a higher profile, than the big crop of freelance stupids that beg seats on the talk show circuit. The "big" in Mr. O'Donnell's Big Stupid is "The Last Word", without which he's just strut without the henhouse.
But. But sometimes he shines. To wit.
LAWRENCE O’DONNELL CHALLENGES TAGG ROMNEY
TO A GOOD OL’ FASHIONED SOUTHIE BRAWL
By Tommy Christopher
The beauty of this Big Stupid is that you have Tommy Christopher approvingly framing Mr. O'Donnell's performance. It's really a two-fer stupid, because superior beta-lefties love nothing more than another superior beta-lefty slamming his penis on the table and brandishing a sawed-off 3" ruler. Bring it on!
October 19, 2012 (Mediaite) - In what can only be described as a masterful hybrid of political essay and one-man dramatic character study, host Lawrence O’Donnell delivered an epic rebuttal to Tagg Romney‘s violent impulses toward President Obama, and indeed, to the entire Romney family. O’Donnell began the segment as the erudite man of letters his viewers know him to be, and ended it as an amalgam of several of my uncles after a few pints, with several castmembers of The Departed thrown in for good measure.
In case you missed it, in an interview with North Carolina radio host Bill Lumaye, Romney son and alleged de facto campaign honcho Tagg Romney said watching President Obama call his dad out over his lies made him "wanna rush down to the debate stage and take a swing at him," restrained only by a cadre of armed agents, and the knowledge that "this is just the nature of the process".
Naturally, this didn’t sit well with a lot of folks, who found the combination of Tagg’s over-the-line impulse and privileged self-delusion worthy of mockery and revulsion. For Lawrence O’Donnell, it was an occasion to unload on the entire Romney family.
But Tommy concludes it's all good clean entertainment.
Now, some of that was over the top...but if you view O’Donnell’s performance apolitically, and just appreciate it for the sheer joy with which he draws it to a close, you can begin to appreciate the appeal of unvarnished opinion journalism...
Let Mr. O'Donnell share, in his recovered Southie accent, the sheer joy of being a privileged TV hack safe in the knowledge that he is below Tagg Romney's notice.
I’ve been sayin’ all year that ya father lies, and has been trying to lie his way into the White House. So, you wanna to take a swing at someone for calling your dad a liar? C’mon. C’mon. Take a swing at me, and don’t worry, there won’t be any Secret Service involved. Just us. And I’ll make it easy for you. I’ll come to you anytime, anywhere. Go ahead, Taggart, take your best shot.
As Mr. Christopher warmly remarks, spoken like a true drunk.
Big tough Larry O'Donnell. From Southie. At this point lefties want a little push-back. They dare you to respond in kind. Pick up the damn gauntlet! Go on, threaten to beat Mr. ODonnell's lilly-white teacup heinie! They double-dog dare you! Then, you see, everything's square. They are assholes, BUT you are the bigger asshole for taking their assholery seriously. P3wned! [Overlong pause as Mr. O'Donnell's glove remains where it fell.] OK. You lose! Now Mr. O'Donnell can brag that he stared down you and the vast right wing conspiracy that stands behind you and Tagg Romney. Chickens!
[The glove remains on the MSNBC studio floor.]
Mr. O'Donnell invites you to be a bigger asshole than he is. If such were possible.
October 18, 2012
NYC Letter: Joe Biden Is An Idiot XXIII -- Iran Deployments
Day 1,362 of CHOPE
D-minus 94 Days
When foreign policy expert Joe "Forgotten More About Foreign Policy Than Most Of My Colleagues Know" Biden isn't busy forgetting where he is, he's forgetting where American troops are.
October 18, 2012 (WFB) - Vice President Joe Biden asked supporters Thursday at a Nevada campaign event, "How many of you know someone who served in Iraq or Iran?"
Biden was joined at the event by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and embattled Senate candidate Rep. Shelley Berkley. At Biden’s question, Reid raised his hand.
When was the last time American troops served in Iran? As near as we can figure it was the Marine security detail and military attachés at the American embassy during the 1979-81 hostage crisis. The United States broke off formal diplomatic relations with Iran on April 7, 1980. Relations have not been restored since.
Biden and Reid, "I'm with stupid."
September 28, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- The Left-wing Punditocracy
Day 1,342 of CHOPE
D-minus 114 Days
The American people can easily be -- misled is maybe too strong a word -- but confused now.
I have fear always about the American public. They’re not very bright.
You are stupid. And these guys -- they're Brainiacs!
On Tuesday Roger Simon, Politico chief political columnist, penned an uncharacteristic satire piece.
PAUL RYAN VS. THE STENCH
By Roger Simon
September 25, 2012 (Politico) - Paul Ryan has gone rogue. He is unleashed, unchained, off the hook.
"I hate to say this, but if Ryan wants to run for national office again, he’ll probably have to wash the stench of Romney off of him," Craig Robinson, a former political director of the Republican Party of Iowa, told The New York Times on Sunday.
... Though Ryan had already decided to distance himself from the floundering Romney campaign, he now feels totally uninhibited. Reportedly, he has been marching around his campaign bus, saying things like, "If Stench calls, take a message” and “Tell Stench I’m having finger sandwiches with Peggy Noonan and will text him later."
We should say would-be satire. The point of satire is to use outsized ridicule, so outsized that the audience is in on the joke. When satire is effectively cloaked in plausibility, then it is not satire but a hoax. Mr. Simon's piece is plenty outsized and plenteously stocked with lame wink-winks so that any low-information reader would reasonable catch on. But plausibility is not simply a correlation to fact, it is what someone is ready and willing to believe. Lefty Brainiacs swallowed Mr. Simon's satire whole and regurgitated it as reality for their sponge-like lefty audiences.
BuzzFeed has a roundup of the oh-so-smart lefty intellects that were taken in:
DOH! DUMBELL NOBEL!
OK, The Word Is That This Was Really Clumsy Cluelessness
[Picture source: Weasel Zipper]
- The Daily Kos
- Tommy Christopher at Mediaite
- Dennis DiClaudio at Comedy Central
- Cord Jefferson at Gawker
Bloomberg has more gullible lefties:
- Joe Gandelman at Moderate Voice
- Liberal radio personality Taylor Marsh
- Steve Benen at MSNBC host Rachel Maddow's blog
- David Ferguson at Raw Story
They bit on this hook-line-and-sinker, not because it is believable, but because, like Agent Muldur, they want to believe. The chatty left is not reality-based, it is narrative-based. It's the narrative that's real.
Now. Look closely. Whose names are missing from the above Brainiac rosters. [Pause.] Why, yours, dear nincompoop American people.
They think. They're smarter. Than you.
* As the report at the link makes clear the online CNBC poll is both informal and unscientific. It polled 76% agreement with Mr. Romney's remark. Before you blow this off, consider that for all the media play given to the snorting indignation of Mr. Romney's detractors, the remark didn't produce a breakaway lead in any national polls for Mr. Obama. Only in the echo chamber shared by the media with the left-wing had Mr. Romney stumbled and lost the election yet again, for the umpty-ninth time.
September 15, 2012
NYC Letter: Joe Biden Is An Idiot XXII -- Foreign Policy Expert
Day 1,330 of CHOPE
D-minus 126 Days
Joe "Forgotten More About Foreign Policy
I'm supposedly an expert on foreign policy. Well, you know, an expert from where I come from is anyone from out of town with a briefcase. I do not have a briefcase.
Than Most Of My Colleagues Know" Biden,
joking around about foreign policy two days after American
diplomatic missions in Egypt and Libya are attacked and
American ambassador Chris Stevens is murdered
EAU CLAIRE, Wisconsin September 13, 2012 (RCP)
Joe "Forgotten More About Foreign Policy
Yeah. He's a briefcase short.
In a world of new threats and new challenges, you can choose leadership that has been tested and proven. ... My opponent and his running mate are new to foreign policy, but from all that we've seen and heard, they want to take us back to an era of blustering and blundering that cost America so dearly.
waving around his foreign policy résumé
DNCC ACCEPTANCE SPEECH
CHARLOTTE September 6, 2012 (ABC News)
Get a f*cking briefcase.
September 13, 2012
NYC Letter: On The Fail Trail -- The "Smart Power" Ticket Redux
Day 1,328 of CHOPE
D-minus 128 Days
In a world of new threats and new challenges, you can choose leadership that has been tested and proven. ... My opponent and his running mate are new to foreign policy, but from all that we've seen and heard, they want to take us back to an era of blustering and blundering that cost America so dearly.
waving around his foreign policy résumé
DNCC ACCEPTANCE SPEECH
CHARLOTTE September 6, 2012 (ABC News)
3:00A. Ring! Ring! Smartest guy in the room, whose single best decision almost two years into his presidency was still picking Joe "Forgotten More About Foreign Policy Than Most Of My Colleagues Know" Biden, takes the 3:00A phone call -- and hangs up.
September 13, 2012 (ABC News) - President Obama says the U.S. would no longer consider the Egyptian government an ally, "but we don’t consider them an enemy." [Full quote, Mr. Obama, infra: "I don't think that we would consider them an ally, but we don't consider them an enemy."]
In an interview with the Spanish-language network Telemundo, less than 24 hours after violent mobs stormed American diplomatic outposts in Cairo and Benghazi, Libya, Obama said the new Muslim Brotherhood leadership in Egypt was still "trying to find its way".
OP-ED September 13, 2012 (WaEx) - In an interview with "60 Minutes" on Wednesday night, President Obama was eager to capitalize on an emerging media narrative: that Mitt Romney had blundered badly with his criticism of the administration's handling of this week's attack on the American Embassy in Egypt.
"Gov. Romney seems to have a tendency to shoot first and aim later," Obama insisted. "And as president, one of the things I've learned is you can't do that, that it's important for you to make sure that the statements you make are backed up by the facts, and that you've thought through the ramifications before you make them."
Perhaps President Fact-Based should have toned down the sanctimony. ... This comment [scil., Egypt is not an ally] was so incredible that NBC foreign correspondent Richard Engel later commented that he "almost had to sit down" when he heard it. Egypt, the 16th largest nation on Earth and by far the largest in the Arab world, was designated a non-NATO ally by Congress in 1989, along with other important countries like Israel, Japan and Australia. Not at any point during the Arab Spring did the U.S. government hint at any change in that status. And Obama has strenuously resisted the idea, promoted by some Republicans, of canceling the $1.5 billion foreign aid package that the U.S. furnishes to Egypt annually. No wonder jaws dropped when Obama dropped this bombshell in a casual news interview on Spanish-language television.
Was Obama sending a major diplomatic message the day after rioters took over the U.S. Embassy in Cairo on Tuesday night? As it turns out, no. Obama was just "shooting first and aiming later." Foreign Policy magazine reporter Josh Rogin followed up with the White House and learned that the comment, although clearly not a simple misstatement, was an Obama blunder, not a change in policy. ... Other administration sources told Rogin "that Obama's 'ally' comment was not prearranged or prepared by staff and that the question was not anticipated." [Ed.: That is, Mr. Obama was off the teat of his teleprompter.]
Fire, aim, ready. Amid ongoing riots in Cairo, Obama accidentally disowned Egypt as an ally. The State Department and White House spokesman Jay Carney both had to follow shortly thereafter with embarrassed restatements that Egypt is a U.S. ally.
... And it takes a lot of brass for Obama, whose incompetence in foreign policy has been amply highlighted by this week's events, to deride his opponent as short on facts.
Facts are what Mr. Obama deems are facts. Mr. Obama pronouncing today's new facts displaces the old facts of yesterday. Today's facts will not necessarily be tomorrow's better facts. If you live in Mr. Obama's world everything swims along on the facts of the moment provided by Mr. Obama. If you don't live in his world of easy facts (e.g., spending to prosperity, the direness of global warming, the perpetuity of sterling credit, jobs and growth just -- just -- beyond the election), then the actual facts can be quite alarming.
August 21, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Todd Akin
Day 1,305 of CHOPE
D-minus 151 Days
The Big Stupid is bipartisan.
Imagine you are a candidate contesting a Senate seat held by an unpopular incumbent. Imagine further that you hold a slight but convincing lead and your candidacy is under the banner of the party enjoying advantages in both base enthusiasm and the generic ballot. All you need to do is keep your nose clean, dress nice, shave twice a day, and work on the pronunciations of the names of the people to thank in your acceptance speech. Oh, one more thing -- DON'T PLAY INTO LOADED QUESTIONS WITH FANTASTICAL STUPID ANSWERS!
August 19, 2012 (Politico) - Todd Akin, Missouri’s Republican Senate candidate, sparked controversy with a claim, made in a TV interview posted Sunday, that victims of “legitimate rape” very rarely get pregnant because their bodies prevent them from doing so.
[Excruciation. Exhale.] Well. Claire McCaskill certainly did get the candidate she wanted to run against. In spades. [Excruciation. Exhale.] Here are Mr. Akin's remarks in full:
In the clip, Charles Jaco, of St. Louis Fox affiliate KTVI’s Jaco Report, asks Akin whether he thinks abortions ought to be permissible in a situation where a woman is raped. While explaining his position, Akin claimed that pregnancy only rarely results from "legitimate rape".Well you know, people always want to make it as one of those things where how do you slice this particularly tough, sort of ethical question. It seems to me first of all, from what I understand from doctors — that’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But, let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work, or something. I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be on the rapist and not attacking the child.
Prior to that portion of the interview, Akin explained why he thought life was important, particularly in the context of American values.
DOCTORS: TODD AKIN
PREGNANCY CLAIM BOGUS
August 20, 2012 (Politico)
Thanks, docs. We know, but we throw in the headline on the off chance Mr. Akin skims us today. Mr. Akin walked back his remarks the same day and again today in a TV spot for good measure. Alas, Mr. Akin is a Republican candidate, which means stupid remarks are not walk-backable. Mr. Akin needs to go, though he makes it clear he will be the last to know this. While Republicans disavow his remarks and distance themselves from his candidacy, the party tries not so subtly to give him the heave-ho. However there remains one person who hopes Mr. Akins stays in the race.
MCCASKILL: 'NOT MY PLACE TO DECIDE'
IF AKIN SHOULD QUIT
August 20, 2012 (Politico/MSNBC)
There’s another problem with this poll for Akin, one we don’t usually see from PPP — they significantly oversampled Republicans. The D/R/I on this survey is R+9 at 30/39/32, but even the GOP-sweep 2010 election had exit polls for Missouri showing an R+3 advantage, 34/37/28. I’m not sure I’d trust that one-point margin lead in this poll.
PPP will hold that lead for Mr. Akin till after today's dropout deadline.
Every serious pro-life advocate knows the progressive "incest and rape" mincing of the abortion issue. If you concede circumstances in abortion, then you weaken the pro-life argument on moral principle. The argument for circumstantial abortion goes something like this:
- Jack Moss, a wrongly convicted black man on death row, wakes up to find he now has a 35-inch collar because he is sharing his body with the head and cervix of Dr. Maxwell Kirshner, a bitter white racist. To escape the electric chair, Jack had volunteered to advance science, however he is shocked to discover himself partnered with Kirshner, who shares all his internal organs and half his extremities. Jack's wife is none too happy about Jack's new addition. The only right thing to do is to remove the annoying Krishner head and make Jack whole again.
Progressives love this movie, because dramatic necessity crowds out thorny morality. Kirshner is a nasty piece of work and Jack deserves his body back, whole and entire. It's just so obvious. There is no movie without restoring the hero, or rather it becomes a very different movie progressives don't want to see.
We are, of course, making fun of the progressive's easy circumstantial argument for abortion. However, as a political matter we find it pointless to argue the immorality of abortion in an arena antithetical to moral argument. The "incest and rape" question is not an invitation to present the moral case against abortion, nor is it an appeal on behalf of the victim. It is a trap. There are responses to the question that neither compromise one's convictions nor spring the trap. Here is a short catechism for Mr. Akin:
- Q: Do you believe abortion is justified in cases of rape and incest?
Mr. Akin: No, I do not.
Q: Really? That seems pretty extreme, an extreme position.
Mr. Akin: Yes, well. I'd remind you that abolition was once consider the extreme position.
Q: They're not the same thing.
Mr. Akin: Each in its time has been called extreme, with extreme as a disparagement. Slavery and abortion, each robs its victim of rightful life. You've asked my position and I've told you. The good people of Missouri know that position so they already know how I will vote on matters of abortion. Just as they already know my positions on all important issues of this campaign, positions very different from my opponent's positions. [Short pause to step on the interviewer's response.] And I am ahead in the polls.
There's not a damn thing Mr. Akin can directly effect in law till he's elected. The objective is to get elected. Be honest, but get elected. And for God's sake don't pretend to be informed when you are pulling shit out your ass!
Defeat snatched from the gums of victory.
August 19, 2012
NYC Letter: Our Clueless President -- Superpowers
Day 1,303 of CHOPE
D-minus 153 Days
In comic books, a superpower is an imaginary superhuman ability. It requires no explanation. It needs no basis in science. The comic book character is simply given the power. In straiten times people often wish to be endowed with some superpower to put things right or stop the suffering or at least help save one person from distress.
Mr. Obama was recently asked what superpower he would want. As president of the United States, whatever you want. No tricks, no fine print. The wildest imaginable power, the big puissance -- BANG! -- it's yours!
WASHINGTON August 17, 2012 (Boston Globe/AP) - Obama discusses a number of offbeat topics in an interview with KOB-FM in Albuquerque, N.M., that aired Friday, including his favorite music, red and green chili and some restaurant recommendations for his hometown of Chicago.
If President Barack Obama could have any "super power", it would be the ability to speak any language. The president says he would "love to be able to speak any language," even though "it might not come in handy to rescue folks from a burning building." Obama says he’s a "big believer in making connections with people."
Glad to know on what the president's doing the big thinking.
Obama says Beyonce’s "Crazy In Love", is a great song to "get my heart rate up," and he also likes Stevie Wonder, Earth Wind and Fire and Jay-Z.
Asked his favorite chili, Obama says, "classic red".
Unemployment has been 8%+ for 3+ years. MT— David Burge (@iowahawkblog) August 17, 2012
@mikememoli If you could have any superpower what would it be? Speak any language, POTUS says.
Attendre ! Ce n'est pas une superpuissance !
Warten! Das ist keine Supermacht!
Espere! No es una superpotencia!
待つ ！超大国ではない ！
Doh! Mr. President, polyglottism isn't a superpower. It's an attainment, the result of ability, study, and practice. An attainment, not an entitlement, no wonder the president thinks it's a superpower.
Maybe the president's English "superpower" can talk away this.
August 17, 2012 (The Hill) - Close to 90 percent of states saw their unemployment rates rise in July, a potentially worrisome development for President Obama’s reelection campaign.
Mr. Obama may need his English "superpower" next month, too!
NOT LOOKING GOOD
POLL August 17, 2012 (Gallup)
The BLS is tracking at 8.7%! Quick! How do you say that in Hmong?
August 15, 2012
NYC Letter: Joe Biden Is An Idiot XXI -- 20th Century Leadership
Day 1,299 of CHOPE
D-minus 157 Days
In June 2008 after becoming the presumptive Democrat nominee Mr. Obama had to make his first big political decision, a decision he would wholly unmistakably own, a decision that would have far-reaching consequences for himself, his candidacy, national security, and the country at large. Mr. Obama chin-stroked over the summer and on August 23 announced his vice president pick [Aching suspenseful organ chord.] -- Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr., a career politician and twice-failed presidential wannabe with a reputation for being an idiot. Mr. Obama had found -- if not the perfect fit for his hope and change pitch -- the perfect foil for his own defects. It was immediately clear to all that the top of ticket was the brains. To wit.
Glenn Reynolds at Instapundit wryly remarks: Uh, how about on every calendar, Joe?
August 15, 2012 (TWS) - In a speech today in Virginia, Vice President Joe Biden seemed to forget we're in the 21st century:Folks, where's it written we cannot lead the world in the 20th century in making automobiles?
Ryan Williams, a spokesman for the Romney campaign, responds:Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan will ensure America leads the world in the 21st century by strengthening middle-class families and creating jobs.
HOPE & CHANGE DAILY
The Return Of Mr. Obama's Underpants, Same Message
August 12, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Debbie Wasserman Schultz Redux
Day 1,296 of CHOPE
D-minus 160 Days
After a strong but overdue début, Debbie Wasserman Schutlz returns with another nationally broadcast Big Stupid!
DWS is the chair of the Democratic National Committee. As chair DWS would be at the forefront of coordinating party fundraising and election strategy. Where direct involvement is precluded by law, DWS would still be expected to have wide-ranging knowledge of the people and organizations supporting Democrat policies and campaigns. That would include Priorities USA Action, an unaffiliated liberal super PAC.
Priorities USA has been in the news lately for running a viciously slanderous ad against Mr. Romney. Democrat spokespersons played dumb (and here* and here and here) about the ad while refusing to repudiate it. Until recently:
Spokeswoman Jan Psaki admitted Thursday that Obama’s campaign had used misleading comments from Joe Soptic, a former union organizer at GST Steel, after she had denied any connection to Soptic.
... Soptic, via an Obama campaign slideshow and a controversial video broadcast by the Obama-allied Priorities USA super PAC, had suggested that Romney was responsible for his wife’s sudden death from cancer. Her death came five years after Bain shut down the money-losing, low-tech steel-company [scil., GST], and seven years after Romney left Bain to manage the 2002 Winter Olympics. Soptic’s wife had health insurance after GST was closed down.
Priorities USA refuses to pull the ad and instead continues to defend it. Amid mounting evidence of illegal coordination between the super PAC and Campaign Barry (and here) DWS continues to play not dumb but conspicuously stupid. The DNC chair on Fox News Sunday (August 12, 2012):
Q: Should the Democrats be releasing an ad that accuses a presidential candidate of being responsible, through inference, of being responsible for a woman’s death?
DWS: First of all, that’s a Priorities USA ad.
Q: I understand...
DWS: It’s a priorities USA Super PAC ad...
DWS: ...and we have nothing to do with it.
Q: Do you deny that they’re Democrats?
DWS: I have no idea of the political affiliation of the folks associated with that Super PAC.
Q: So, Bill Burton, who used to work in the White House, who worked for the Obama campaign in 2008? Not a Democrat?
DWS: That is a Super PAC ad, not affiliated with the party or the campaign.
Um-ah. Oh. Wait a minute.
Clearly Priorities USA is a Democratic SuperPAC. Was trying to state the obvious: we have no control over their activities.— D Wasserman Schultz (@DWStweets) August 12, 2012
Yeah. [Pause.] "I have no idea of the political affiliation of the folks associated with that Super PAC." What's obvious is DWS thinks you are as stupid as she is. Via Twitchy:
— Joe Pounder (@PounderFile) August 12, 2012
#DebbieDoesntKnow who Barack Obama is.
— Jason (@82ndVet) August 12, 2012
#DebbieDoesntKnow all 57 states
— Jason (@82ndVet) August 12, 2012
#DebbieDoesntKnow how to get to Funky Town
Not content merely to play an ignorant twit on national television, DWS goes on to defend the discredited ad. When her defense is challenged, she sniffs about the hypocrisy of the Romney campaign for its lack of indignation about negative -- but not slanderous -- ads by conservative super PACs against Mr. Obama. Oh! Debbie! Puh-leeze! Put on your big girl pants!
You know, this is a campaign for president of the United States. Mitt Romney is running for president of the United States, and he and his campaign leadership need to put their big boy and big girl pants on and defend his record.
Not trying, just lying.
* Although WH press secretary Jim Carney cannot bring himself to comment on the controversial ad he pretends to be unaware of -- an ad widely reported and discussed in the media, Mr. Carney's purview -- he did not hesitate to rebuke an opposition attack ad that was never made, never produced, and never broadcast -- and swiftly repudiated by the Romney Campaign. Here is Mr. Carney from his high pious perch at the White House, May 17, 2012:
I mean, I'll echo [the Campaign Barry statement damning the proposed Jeremiah Wright ad campaign] and say that to launch a multimillion-dollar, divisive attack campaign is not what the American people want. And I think there are moments when you have to stand up and say that that's not the right way to go.
Preach it, brother Carney.
August 04, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Début! Chuck Schumer
Day 1,288 of CHOPE
D-minus 168 Days
It's a week for overdue débuts.
Mr. Reid débuted Wednesday as the grand political whore he is. And every grand whore has his following.
Before we get started, let us just say Mr. Schumer is a political whore in his own right (and here), but formal induction at E-N! will have to wait for another day. Today he is Harry Reid's stooge, which only earns him a Big Stupid.
August 3, 2012 (NJ) - Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), reinforcing the Democratic line of attack on Mitt Romney’s unreleased tax returns, on Friday defended Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) for suggesting that the presumptive GOP nominee might not have paid any taxes over 10 years.
... "Every day Mitt Romney has to talk about tax returns is a bad day for him and a good day for the Democrats," Schumer said on MSNBC’s Morning Joe. "They’re trying to focus this on Harry Reid. There's an 800-pound elephant in the room. It's called unreleased taxes."
That would be the same room where the several 800-pound gorillas languish. Every day Democrats get to talk about the elephant is a good day for them. That's the Big Stupid strategy going into November: Oh! Look! A
squirrel elephant! Wha-what gorillas?
Repeating the call by Democrats and many Republicans [Ed.: Many? What "many"?], Schumer added that Romney should just release his tax returns.
"Guess what? Few things we know about Mitt Romney's taxes—Cayman Islands, Swiss bank accounts—raised more questions than they answer," Schumer said. "He should rip off the Band-Aid now. He should have done it two years ago. No one could understand why."
"No one could understand why." Messrs. Reid and Schumer think they can do a better job than the IRS -- the government's most unforgiving examining agency -- reviewing Mr. Romney's returns. Because where the IRS has found nothing improper, given the chance, the Democrats certainly will. Mr. Schumer understands his rhetorical "why". [Pause.] And so does Mr. Romney.
The 98-pound elephant. Can it put on muscle before November?
July 28, 2012
NYC Letter: Got That Wrong -- Churchill Loaner Whereabouts
Day 1,281 of CHOPE
D-minus 175 Days
Even at the elevated level of a White House blog there are slow blog days.
THE BUST OF WINSTON CHURCHILL
By Dan Pfeiffer, WH communications director
July 27, 2012 (White House) - Lately, there’s been a rumor swirling around about the current location of the bust of Winston Churchill. Some have claimed that President Obama removed the bust of Winston Churchill from the Oval Office and sent it back to the British Embassy.
Now, normally we wouldn’t address a rumor that’s so patently false, but just this morning the Washington Post’s Charles Krauthammer repeated this ridiculous claim in his column. He said President Obama “started his Presidency by returning to the British Embassy the bust of Winston Churchill that had graced the Oval Office.”
This is 100% false. The bust still in the White House. In the Residence. Outside the Treaty Room.
Mr. Pfieffer is correct. His follow-on statements are 100% false.
WASHINGTON February 2, 2009 (Telegraph) - A bust of the former prime minister once voted the greatest Briton in history, which was loaned to George W Bush from the Government's art collection after the September 11 attacks, has now been formally handed back.
The bronze by Sir Jacob Epstein, worth hundreds of thousands of pounds if it were ever sold on the open market, enjoyed pride of place in the Oval Office during President Bush's tenure. But when British officials offered to let Mr Obama to hang onto the bust for a further four years, the White House said: "Thanks, but no thanks."
Diplomats were at first reluctant to discuss the whereabouts of the Churchill bronze, after its ejection from the seat of American power. But the British Embassy in Washington has now confirmed that it sits in the palatial residence of ambassador Sir Nigel Sheinwald, just down the road from Vice President Joe Biden's official residence. It is not clear whether the ambassador plans to keep it in Washington or send it back to London. ... Indeed a bust of Mr Lincoln now sits in the Oval Office where Epstein's Churchill once ruled the roost.
... A British Embassy spokesman said: "The bust of Sir Winston Churchill by Sir Jacob Epstein was uniquely lent to a foreign head of state, President George W Bush, from the Government Art Collection in the wake of 9/11 as a signal of the strong transatlantic relationship. ... The new President has decided not to continue this loan and the bust has now been returned. It is on display at the Ambassador's Residence.
Oh! What 100% false lies won't the Telegraph print to peddle its papers? Oh. Wait
IS THE CHURCHILL BUST CONTROVERSY
A TOTAL BUST?
By Jake Tapper
July 27, 2012 (ABC News) - “Obama started his presidency by returning to the British Embassy the bust of Winston Churchill that had graced the Oval Office,” [conservative columnist Charles ] Krauthammer said in a column this week.
... This was not some random rumor plucked from the ether. The assertion originally came from the British Embassy and from the White House. ... Moreover, White House curator William Allman was quoted in a January 2010 story at CBSNews.comseeming to confirm the (allegedly “100% false”) information.
It turns out there are TWO Churchill busts, the Epstein bronze at issue and a second Epstein bronze, the one Mr. Pfieffer identifies situated outside the Treaty Room, presented to Lyndon Johnson on October 6, 1965.
The one in the White House residence was a gift to the White House from the British Embassy during the Johnson administration.
Back to Mr. Pfieffer, who updated his post:
Since my post on the fact that the bust of Winston Churchill has remained on display in the White House, despite assertions to the contrary, I have received a bunch of questions -- so let me provide some additional info. The White House has had a bust of Winston Churchill since the 1960’s. At the start of the Bush administration Prime Minister Blair lent President Bush a bust that matched the one in the White House, which was being worked on at the time and was later returned to the residence. The version lent by Prime Minister Blair was displayed by President Bush until the end of his Presidency. On January 20, 2009 -- Inauguration Day -- all of the art lent specifically for President Bush’s Oval Office was removed by the curator’s office, as is common practice at the end of every presidency. The original Churchill bust remained on display in the residence. The idea put forward by Charles Krauthammer and others that President Obama returned the Churchill bust or refused to display the bust because of antipathy towards the British is completely false and an urban legend that continues to circulate to this day.
Nice try, Dan.
Mr. Krauthammer, who knows of what he speaks, refers only to the bust returned from the Oval House, a well documented event. Mr. Pfieffer tries to conflate the two busts. He argues on the evidence of the permanent bust that stories of loaned bust's return are 100% false. The loaned bust, as confirmed by both the WH curator and the British embassy, was in fact returned to the British and is no longer within the precincts of the White House as Mr. Pfieffer's original post argues. Next Mr. Pfieffer moves on to the return itself. Nothing to it, he says, common practice, any suggestion to the contrary is 100% false. Whatever the common practice for the disposition of loaned art for the incoming administration, the British government stepped outside the practice offering to extend the Bush-loan of the Epstein bronze. That same government confirmed that the offer was declined by Mr. Obama, which is to say it was not returned as a blind common practice, but in accordance with Mr. Obama's direction.
What is conspicuously missing from Mr. Pfieffer's update is his admission that Mr. Krauthammer was correct about the bronze on loan and he, Mr. Pfieffer, was wrong on the facts. All wrong, 100% wrong.
White House fact check without the fuss of the facts.
July 15, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Mr. Obama Redux!
Day 1,268 of CHOPE
D-minus 188 Days
Super Big Stupid Edition
Mr. Obama's Big Stupid début was gobsmacking stupid. His encore soars into the political empyrean of stupid.
There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me -- because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t -- look, 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. (Applause.)
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.
owning every success everyone has ever achieved
REMARKS AT A CAMPAIGN EVENT
ROANOKE, Virginia July 13, 2012 (White House)
We, on the other hand, are always struck by people who think, well, I can claim others' successes as my own as an advocate of big government. If you are a successful business owner, Mr. Obama is co-opting your success because he himself is so lacking in successes -- other than a Cinderella run for the presidency and a Nobel Peace Prize, which he admits himself undeserving and, to prove his point, has waged war here and there and here and there.
What makes this Big Stupid so big and stupid is that it is not original with Mr. Obama. It's a lift from Elizabeth "High Cheekbones" Warren. That is to say, this is another unforced error as Ms. Warren's argument had already been soundly confuted (and here and here and here and here) and there was plenty of evidence how badly class-baiting plays.
POLL May 11, 2012 (Politico) - Nearly two-thirds of Americans believe that the United States benefits from having a rich class, a figure unchanged from over 20 years ago, according to a new survey Friday.
Indeed, 63 percent of Americans believe that the United States is better off from having a class of wealthy, according to Gallup. Only 34 percent believe that the country does not benefit from having an upper class.
Even as the president has called on the rich to pay their "fair share" in taxes, the Occupy Wall Street protests, and amid a public debate over the so-called Buffett rule, American views of the rich have not changed significantly in over 20 years.
July 10, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Ray LaHood
Day 1,263 of CHOPE
D-minus 193 Days
Team Barry is all forward thinkers thinking forward -- even after someone else has already forward thought what Team Barry will one day forward think. Today's exhibit: Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.
July 9, 2012 (CNS News) - The Obama administration is taking credit for inspiring Lexus to create a hybrid SUV--even though the automobile company began the well-publicized production of its RX 400h SUV hybrid in 2004--four full years before Obama was elected.
... It was widely reported that pre-orders for the Lexus RX 400h SUV were high, and the vehicle was widely available for sale in 2005. The company made its first hybrid sedan, the GS 450h, available in 2006.
... Despite the fact that the RX 400h premiered in 2004, Obama administration Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood expressed a different vision of history when he and EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson were discussing vehicle fuel standards at the Aspen Ideas Festival on July 3. Mr. LaHood:I don’t think the car manufacturers would be manufacturing the cars they are manufacturing today as hybrids, if it weren’t for what the president did in signing the executive order and what Lisa and I have done over the last three and half years about developing C.A.F.E. (Corporate Average Fuel Economy) standards for automobiles and light trucks that will get 54.4 miles per gallon by 2025. ... I think we jump started the ability. When you see now a Lexus hybrid, no one would have ever predicted that 2 years ago. Every car manufacturer is getting into hybrid. I think we jump started those opportunities.
President Obama signed the order for the federal government to raise fuel standards for cars and trucks in May 20, 2010.
Toyota began SUV hybrid production in 2004, which means the project was on the drawing boards years before. The CAFE standards that Mr. LaHood is bragging on as the nudge for Lexus SUV hybrid production was signed in 2010. Team Barry policy has magically prompted Toyota to manufacture SUV hybrids more than six years before that policy was promulgated! More than four years before Team Barry even existed!
We are left wondering what future Team Barry policies are even now producing new and better products.
Credit where credit is magically due.
July 09, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Robert Gibbs
Day 1,262 of CHOPE
D-minus 194 Days
Special Double-Stupid Edition
Campaign Mitt has disclosed that Mr. Romney had a Swiss bank account. The account was closed in 2010. Democrats are outrageously outraged.
WATERLOO, Iowa June 26, 2012 (NYT) - Like Mr. Obama, who was campaigning Tuesday in Atlanta and Miami at fund-raisers, Mr. Biden seized on a recent Washington Post story to slam Mr. Romney for Bain’s reported role as a "pioneer" in investing in and managing companies that sent jobs overseas.
... "A prospective president with a Swiss bank account and a retirement investments in the Cayman Islands?" Mr. Biden said with mock incredulity in Waterloo, Iowa. "Did you ever think you’d be choosing between two people running for president, one of whom had a Swiss bank account? He’s out of touch."
Pushing the secretive Romney finances meme along, the MSM reports Campaign Barry's attack ads as straight news.
Mr. Romney hasn't done anything illegal. That is irrelevant. What he has done according to the Democrats' telling is much much worse. He has made big money, invested his big money, and preserved his capital -- all legally -- while hundreds of millions of Americans are stuck in the Democrats' declining middle class! Unless you're a highly placed Democrat gaming the financial markets, financial success is a sure sign you are "out of touch".
Matthew O'Brien at The Atlantic tries to be fair while giving play to the Demos' horror at foreign investment.
Of course, it's no secret that Mr. Romney is a man of means. But what is still secret is just how Romney has invested those means. Maybe not so much secret as secretive. Romney has released his return for 2010 and an estimate for 2011. So we have a broad outline of what his personal finances look like. ... Mitt Romney's long-time lawyer, R. Bradford Malt, has managed Romney's personal finances since Romney was elected governor of Massachusetts. That's when Romney set up a blind trust, to avoid any possible conflicts of interest.
... Swiss banks are the gold standard of tax havens because of their secrecy and stability. Actually, that sentence should be in the past tense. Swiss banks are not nearly as secret as they used to be. Time was, the Swiss government jealously guarded its banks' reputation for never revealing client information. It was a crime to do so. ... But that started to change in 2008. A former UBS banker came forward with tales of how he helped wealthy American clients evade taxes -- including such charming details as smuggling diamonds in tubes of toothpaste. The IRS launched an investigation, and came up with a list of 52,000 names it wanted from the Swiss banking giant. A settlement followed, and then a new U.S. law. Now foreign banks have to cooperate with the IRS or face fairly tough penalties.
... When most people hear the words "Swiss bank account" they think "tax evasion". That's not always fair. There are plenty of good reasons an American might have a Swiss bank account. Maybe they live abroad. Or work for a Swiss company. But those are good reasons that don't apply to Mitt Romney. He didn't live abroad. And he didn't work for a Swiss company.
That doesn't mean Mitt Romney was up to no good. There's no evidence of that. It's entirely possible that Romney really was just hedging against the dollar. That's the legitimate reason a very wealthy person would want a Swiss bank account. The not-so-legitimate reason is the secrecy -- to hide money from the IRS. It's unfair for the Obama campaign to insinuate Romney was doing the latter. But it'd be a lot more unfair if Romney was more transparent. We just don't know enough to say anything definitively. We don't know how long the account existed. We don't know whether Romney's lawyer or Romney himself set it up.
...Romney can end this controversy whenever he wants. He just has to release more tax records.
Which brings us round to Robert Gibbs.
July 8th, 2012 (CNN) - President Barack Obama's campaign adviser Robert Gibbs continued to hammer Mitt Romney on Sunday over questions about the candidate's overseas financial accounts.
Gibbs, however, stopped short of saying whether Romney was in violation of any tax evasion laws, saying "nobody knows."
"The best way to figure out if he is complying with American tax law is to have him release more of the tax returns," the former White House press secretary said on CNN's State of the Union.
... While Obama's campaign urges the presumptive GOP presidential nominee to release more tax returns, Romney's campaign points to the two-years' worth the candidate released earlier this year.
However, Gibbs said it wasn't enough.
Mr. Gibbs' insinuation is that Mr. Romney may not be complying with American tax law. Here's a clue for Mr. Gibbs. If Mr. Romney were noncompliant the people who would know would be the IRS. The IRS has no investigations into Mr. Romney's returns, they have assessed him no penalties, they have placed no liens against his properties or assets in lieu of payments due (the same cannot be said for Mr. Obama's executive office staff). All of which is to say, the IRS has examined Mr. Romney's returns and not found anything suspicious or illegal. Mr. Gibbs, who has no expertise in tax law, wants to snoop into Mr. Romney's returns to see if he can find what the IRS hasn't. Call it a hunch -- or call it a desperate attempt to smear Mr. Romney the financial Boy Scout.
The problem Mr. Gibbs and the Democrats have grasping the mechanics of high finance -- not its enjoyments -- is they are conceptually limited to one too many sit-throughs of Oliver Stone's Wall Street.
Here is another clue. If Mr. Romney were engaged in illegalities, if his intent was secrecy, why would he voluntarily disclose his instruments of illegality and secrecy?
But Mr. Gibbs is not finished being a donkey.
Flare to Mr. Gibbs: Duh. You might want to put a little thought into those cute metaphors before going on national television.
June 29, 2012
NYC Letter: The Greats Of Political Whoredom -- Nancy Pelosi III
Day 1,252 of CHOPE
D-minus 204 Days
Special Middle-Class Tax Gloat Edition
What would yesterday's discovery of the Obamacare tax (in plain sight at the very center of the law) be without a witless gloat from [Groan.] witless Nancy Pelosi.
June 28, 2012 (CNS News) - House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA, 8th) said Thursday that "It’s pretty exciting" that the Supreme Court upheld the health-care law’s individual mandate as a tax, saying now Sen. Ted Kennedy can "rest in peace". Ms. Pelosi:I knew that when he left us he would go to heaven and help pass the bill. Now I know he was busily at work until this decision came down, inspiring one way or another. And now he can rest in peace.
Awww. Ms. Pelosi's memorializing is so [Call to the Hello Kitty help desk.] cute. Ms. Pelosi went on:
We thought—we knew we were on solid ground in terms of interstate commerce ["Because I know the Constitution. This bill is ironclad. It is ironclad."], solid ground in terms of the constitution, it was just a question of what the vote would be. And with that confidence we happily embraced the decision that came down.
But the court struck down the intended conceptual Constitutional bases of Obamacare, which were -- and Ms. Pelosi still believes to be the Constitutional "solid ground" of Obamacare -- Article One, Section 8, Clause 3, the Commerce Clause, and Article One, Section 8, Clause 18, the Necessary and Proper Clause. Ms. Pelosi might want to at least take a glance at the easy-to-read syllabus provided by the Court:
CHIEF JUSTICE ROBERTS concluded in Part III–A that the individual mandate is not a valid exercise of Congress’s power under the Commerce Clause and the Necessary and Proper Clause. Pp. 16–30. (a) The Constitution grants Congress the power to "regulate Commerce." Art. I, §8, cl. 3 (emphasis added). The power to regulate commerce presupposes the existence of commercial activity to be regulated. This Court’s precedent reflects this understanding: As expansive as this Court’s cases construing the scope of the commerce power have been, they uniformly describe the power as reaching "activity." E.g., United States v. Lopez, 514 U. S. 549, 560. The individual mandate, however, does not regulate existing commercial activity. It instead compels individuals to become active in commerce by purchasing a product, on the ground that their failure to do so affects interstate commerce.
Construing the Commerce Clause to permit Congress to regulate individuals precisely because they are doing nothing would open a new and potentially vast domain to congressional authority. Congress already possesses expansive power to regulate what people do. Upholding the Affordable Care Act under the Commerce Clause would give Congress the same license to regulate what people do not do. The Framers knew the difference between doing something and doing nothing. They gave Congress the power to regulate commerce, not to compel it. Ignoring that distinction would undermine the principle that the Federal Government is a government of limited and enumerated powers. The individual mandate thus cannot be sustained under Congress’s power to "regulate Commerce." Pp. 16–27.
That is not "solid ground".
(b) Nor can the individual mandate be sustained under the Necessary and Proper Clause as an integral part of the Affordable Care Act’s other reforms. Each of this Court’s prior cases upholding laws under that Clause involved exercises of authority derivative of, and in service to, a granted power. E.g., United States v. Comstock, 560 U. S. ___. The individual mandate, by contrast, vests Congress with the extraordinary ability to create the necessary predicate to the exercise of an enumerated power and draw within its regulatory scope those who would otherwise be outside of it. Even if the individual mandate is "necessary" to the Affordable Care Act’s other reforms, such an expansion of federal power is not a "proper" means for making those reforms effective. Pp. 27–30
That is not "ironclad".
WASHINGTON June 28, 2012 (ABC News) - The Court’s decision to uphold the individual mandate requiring Americans to buy health insurance or pay a "tax" caught many by surprise... Pelosi said she, for one, was not surprised at all. Ms. Pelosi:[Chief Justice John Roberts] has written about this, and his decision today and the writing of it is consistent with what he has written before.
As if Nancy had ever read anything Justice Roberts had written before. [Pause.] As is apparent from her earlier gloat, she hasn't read the "total victory" opinion on Obamacare. And if Ms. Pelosi has ever read the Constitution, it is clear she did not read it with comprehension.
Pelosi was quick to point out she didn’t believe Justice Roberts deserved "credit for saving Obamacare", as some have suggested. Ms. Pelosi:Credit goes with how the bill was written, and the president was a very major part of that, and the court upheld that. I don’t want to go into personalities but I do think that the chief justice’s decision was consistent with his other writing.
No qualms there. All credit to the deserving Democrats and Mr. Obama. Of course neither the Democrats nor Mr. Obama thought they had written a tax bill, which is what the court upheld.
We look forward to Mr. Obama & Ms. Pelosi & co. campaigning this fall on their "total" victory sustaining their big new tax on the middle-class.
The undisputed queen of political whoredom.
June 20, 2012
NYC Letter: Got That Wrong -- Sheila Jackson Lee
Day 1,243 of CHOPE
D-minus 213 Days
What a sport! Mr. Obama invokes executive privilege to protect -- George W. Bush!
June 20, 2012 (Right Scoop) - Forget the facts in the Fast and Furious investigation. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX, 18th) has other reasons for supporting Eric Holder, namely his help in the patent law and civil rights arenas, or something.
Also, she says Fast and Furious started under the Bush administration which is highly incorrect, being as how it didn’t start until 2009. But again, who cares about facts when you’re a Democrat. Ms. Lee:Let me try to clarify the record and indicate that this Fast and Furious debacle started under the Bush administration, ah, and-ah it is been evidenced by various reports that it started with the ATL office in Arizona unbeknownst to leadership in Washington D.C., at least leadership that came in under the Obama administration in this instance, Eric Holder.
Um, after it was brought to his attention there was some confusion. He even admits that he sent a letter to Congress that was incorrect. He ultimately corrected that. Every-ah request for him to appear on Fast and Furious before a Congressional committee, the general has ah-attended and been open. The issue that we have is that this is an open investigation. I've spoken to ATF officers who want to come forward and clarify even their position. Unfortunately since this is an open case, since there's an ultimate tragedy that occurred pursuant to this of which we again give our deepest sympathy to the family of the fallen officer, and have no desire to see that happen again -- but we have to be adults in this process, particularly when we’re trying to get to the bottom of the, of the issue of Fast and Furious.
... But what has happened between the general and-ah, in this instance, the chairman of the Oversight Committee ah, has gotten to be very pointed. And I don't think you get answers when you're very pointed. And so I defend the general, one, on the service that he has given to this country, over decades of public service in the federal law enforcement, and the work that he is doing-ah in the area of civil rights, in the area of federal crimes, in the area of mortgage relief, settlements that he’s brought about because of that, and the help that he has given in patent law and inventions in terms of protection, and trust.
Let's boil Ms. Lee's interminable ramble down to her main points. Ms. Lee admits Mr. Holder provided the oversight committee incorrect information, then goes on to applaud the super job he is doing on the Democrat agenda, but she leads with her take-away: "this Fast and Furious debacle started under the Bush administration". [Abrupt needle scratch.] Oh. Wait.
Issa: Holder now retracts claim that AG predecessor, Michael Mukasey, knew about F&F-like program.— Byron York (@ByronYork) June 20, 2012
This is the second time in nearly seven months that the Department has gotten its facts wrong about gunwalking. Attorney General Holder accused Attorney General Mukasey, without producing any evidence, of having been briefed on gunwalking in Wide Receiver. The case Attorney General Mukasey was briefed on, Hernandez, is fundamentally different from both Wide Receiver and Fast and Furious since it involved cooperation with the Mexican government. Attorney General Holder’s retraction should have included an apology to the former Attorney General.
In his eagerness to blame the previous administration, Attorney General Holder got his facts wrong. And his tactic didn't bring us any closer to understanding how a bad policy evolved and continued. Bad policy is bad policy, regardless of how many administrations carried it out. Ironically, the only document produced yesterday by the Department appears to show that senior officials in the Attorney General's own Department were strategizing about how to keep gunwalking in both Wide Receiver and Fast and Furious under wraps.
And Allahpundit at Hot Air gets the curtain call:
Video fun via the Examiner of The One declaring in 2005 that the Attorney General is the people’s attorney, not the president’s. Huh. Are the people clamoring not to know how the rolling, murderous clusterfark known as Fast & Furious came to be?
Here is Mr. Obama's scolding high-minded quote in full:
The Attorney General’s job is not just to enforce the President’s laws it is to tell the President what the law is. The job is not simply to facilitate the President’s power, it is to speak truth to that power as well. The President is not the Attorney General’s client; the people are. And so the true test of an Attorney General nominee is whether that person is ready to put the Constitution of the people before the political agenda of the President.
The clamor not to know.
June 17, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Beau Biden
Day 1,240 of CHOPE
D-minus 216 Days
Joseph Robinette "Beau" Biden III is the Attorney General of Delaware and the oldest son of Joe Biden. He has his father's phony smile as well as his father's genuine talent for botchery.
RALEIGH, North Carolina June 16, 2012 (News & Observer) - Beau Biden, the son of the Democratic vice president, went "off script," as he called it, to fire a shot a Republican Mitt Romney but hit Gov. Bev Perdue at the same time.
At the N.C. Democratic Party's annual fundraising dinner, Biden mentioned that Romney didn't seek a second term as Massachusetts governor, suggesting his failed economic policies hurt him. "I've never met a successful politician who didn't run again," said Biden, the Delaware attorney general.
The crowd collectively groaned. Biden's line sounded similar to what Republicans say about another governor who isn't seeking re-election: North Carolina Democrat Bev Perdue.
Who is Governor Perdue? TDC remarks:
Perdue's administration has been plagued with its own scandals and gaffes — including alleged sexual harassment among staffers at the North Carolina Democratic Party (NCDP) and Perdue's suggestion that the country "suspend" congressional elections in order to "help this country recover."
RALEIGH, North Carolina June 15, 2012 (News & Observer) - North Carolina Bev Perdue is the most unpopular governor in the country, according to a new poll.
Perdue's disapproval rating has hit an all-time high of 59 percent, according to a new survey by Public Policy Polling, a Democratic-leaning firm based in Raleigh. Her approval rating is 30 percent, with 11 percent not for sure.
That makes her the most unpopular governor in the country of the 40 governors that PPP has polled, the firm said.
Beau gets it right -- inadvertently.
Didn't fall far from the tree.
June 07, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Bill Press
Day 1,230 of CHOPE
D-minus 226 Days
Special Advance Fourth Of July Edition
The Star-Spangled Banner is the national anthem of the United States of America. Written in 1814 by Francis Scott Key following his witness of the defense of Fort McHenry, the lyrics celebrate the young nation's virtues and its indomitable spirit. Its range of one and a half octaves challenges the talents of professional singers and local personalities at baseball games. It is a commonplace tightly woven into the fabric of American life.
Bill Press thinks it stupid.
Who is Bill Press? Mr. Press is a liberal shill with a microphone, which is to say he knows better than you what is best for you, the nation, the planet, the expanding universe and whatever lies beyond, and is here to tell you about it.
June 5, 2012 (RCP) - "It is a major crusade of mine and that is to get rid of the Star-Spangled Banner. Now I know you're going to say I am not a true American I'm not patriotic. I don't think patriotism has anything to do with it. The National Anthem is just absolutely monumentally un-singable. I mean there’s so much wrong with it. I don't know where to start," liberal radio talk show host Bill Press said on his nationally syndicated program today.
"It's an abomination. First it ranges two octaves [sic] most people can only do kind of one octave. I mean when you think about it, it’s bombs bursting in air rocket’s red glare it all kinds of, you know a lot of national anthems are that way, all kinds of military jargon and the land there’s only one phrase 'the land of the free' which is kind of nice and 'the home of the brave?' I don't know," he said. "Are we [Americans] the only ones who are brave on the planet? I mean all the brave people live here. I mean it’s just stupid I think. I’m embarrassed, I’m embarrassed every time I hear it."
To dispossess Americans of The Star-Spangled Banner is a "major crusade" of Mr. Press, suggesting he has given this much thought, yet the best he can do is a jumble of jejune personal complaints. But Mr. Press's likes and dislikes, of course, suffice to deprive you of the national anthem.
Mr. Press plainly has too much air time to fill and no time to organize thoughtful argument. But thoughtful argument is not an obligation on the mind of Mr. Press. His own presentment speaks for itself. We won't waste our time and insult your intelligence with a critique of the obviously stupid. Mr. Press has already wasted ours and insulted yours aplenty.
We hope Mr. Press suffers his embarrassment of The Star Spangled Banner till his dying day, while the rest of us enjoy its uplift.
The excruciations of liberalism. Th-the HUMANITY!
May 29, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Paul Krugman, Stupid Again! Encore! Redux
Day 1,221 of CHOPE
Special "Watch The Skies" Edition
Nobel laureate (obligatory mention) and former Enron advisor Paul Krugman begins a pattern of recycling earlier Big Stupids. Bigger. Stupider. And now, he claims this Big Stupid is a "serious proposal".
WAR IS INFRASTRUCTURE!
Who Is Thwarting The Alien Invasion Spending?
This is hard to get people to do, much better, obviously, to build bridges and roads and healthcare clinics and schools. But my proposed, I actually have a serious proposal which is that we have to get a bunch of scientists to tell us that we're facing a threatened alien invasion, and in order to be prepared for that alien invasion we have to do things like build high-speed rail. And the, once we've recovered, we can say, "Look, there were no aliens."
But look, I mean, whatever it takes because right now we need somebody to spend, and that somebody has to be the U.S. government.
NYT columnist and Earth warlord
REAL TIME WITH BILL MAHER
HOLLYWOOD May 26, 2012 (NewsBusters)
Everyone! Quick! Into the Acela! Those aliens will never catch us in our high-speed train to -- dense urban metropolises where we can be herded like cattle.
Now, you might be thinking, "The Bill Maher show? That show was made for stupid." But Mr. Krugman insists this is a "serious proposal". What Mr. Krugman is serious about is not malevolent aliens, what he is serious about is deceiving the public and defrauding the government.
Here is a nice carve up.
The Nation’S Most Dangerous Economist, Paul Krugman,
Releases Another Book With His Only Idea For Dems —
Spend More Money
By Kyle Smith
May 27, 2012 (NYPost) - Krugman is a most unusual economist. Others may measure their words, issue caveats, acknowledge that the research isn’t conclusive, admit that their biases influence their reading of facts. Not Krugman. Krugman is remarkable for his freewheeling writing style, which frequently leads to lively metaphors ("invisible bond-market vigilantes", "confidence fairy"). He is often dismissive, misleading and tendentious. He changes the subject, ignores inconvenient evidence and plays playground bully to people he sees as ideological enemies (a list longer than Nixon’s). He blasts away at others’ work without even providing the basic courtesy of a link to what he’s talking about, which is a disservice to readers who might like to review the other side of the argument to decide for themselves.
... Krugman’s problem, as he reminds us in "End This Depression Now!" (W. W. Norton & Company) is that he is a fanatic in the grip of a religion called "Keynesianism" which says you should borrow and spend your way out of a recession.
Actually Mr. Krugman is in the grip of something far worse, his own unchallengeable opinion -- though it is often at odds with itself.
The problem remains: We’ve got a debt that’s approaching $16,000,000,000,000. Center-left columnist Kinsley wrote, "I have been waiting for Paul Krugman to tell me how we are going to handle the debt, once we get this recession out of the way. No, really. There’s no economist whose judgment I trust more ... But don’t we at some point have to start paying the money back? Why have taxes at all? Why deny ourselves anything money can buy? If $15 trillion in debt can be a freebie, why not $30 trillion or $60 trillion?"
Krugman, typically, humiliated Kinsley on a technical point about inflation vs. hyperinflation and let this whopper of a question sit there, knowing that if he had his way, the debt would be several trillions larger than it is.
Earlier this year Krugman wrote, "People think of debt’s role in the economy as if it were the same as what debt means for an individual: There’s a lot of money you have to pay to someone else. But that’s all wrong; the debt we create is basically money we owe to ourselves, and the burden it imposes does not involve a real transfer of resources."
In 2003, when the debt was less than half what it is today, he wrote, "We’re looking at a fiscal crisis that will drive interest rates sky-high... But what’s really scary — what makes a fixed-rate mortgage seem like such a good idea — is the looming threat to the federal government’s solvency... How will the train wreck play itself out? ... My prediction is that politicians will eventually be tempted to resolve the crisis the way irresponsible governments usually do: by printing money, both to pay current bills and to inflate away debt."
Inflation to pay current bills, a reference to hyperinflation, is exactly what he would later ridicule Kinsley for worrying about.
In 1996, Krugman...said Social Security has a "Ponzi-game aspect in which each generation takes out more than it put in." Last year he said it "is and always has been mainly a pay-as-you-go system, which is nothing like a classic Ponzi scheme."
... When Harvard Professor Mankiw doubted the Obama administration’s projection of 15.6% real growth between 2008 and 2013, Krugman accused him of "deliberate obtuseness" in a post titled "Roots of Evil". Mankiw offered to wager on the matter but got no response. That was smart: The economy will have to catch fire and grow at about 7% between now and the end of 2013 for the Obama projection to come true.
This month Krugman gave us a great summation of why he refuses to even stick to one set of wrong-headed ideas. He has a short attention span, like politicians focused on the next election cycle.
"It’s usually far from clear," Krugman wrote, "what exactly the long-run policy is supposed to be, other than the fact that it involves inflicting pain on workers and the poor." Far from clear? Such uncharacteristic modesty! You knew Krugman was just building up to a one-liner, the one that showed how careless he was about consequences: "In the long run, we are all dead."
Oh, final thought for Mr. Krugman. When proposing a "serious proposal" to get a "bunch of scientists" to lie about an alien invasion in order to hijack the nation's wealth, don't announce it to us rubes who can't tell the difference between the brilliance of your seriousity and the Roland Emmerich flick. We might get suspicious.
Orson Wells, call your agent.
May 28, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Chris Hayes
Day 1,220 of CHOPE
Memorial Day Edition
It's hard to foul up a Memorial Day filler segment on talk TV. You note the day, a few words about the fallen, a nod to the sobrieties, and cut to commercial. Not so Chris Hayes of MSNBC! He assays the deep-think on-air and wins today's Big Stupid.
Thinking today and observing Memorial Day, that'll be happening tomorrow. Just talked with Lt. Col. Steve Burke, who was a casualty officer with the Marines and had to tell people [inaudible]. Um, I, I, ah, [Steve] Beck, sorry, um, I think it's interesting because I think it is very difficult to talk about the war dead and the fallen without invoking valor, without invoking the words "heroes". Um, and, ah, ah, why do I feel so comfortable [sic] about the word "hero"? I feel comfortable, ah, uncomfortable, about the word because it seems to me that it is so rhetorically proximate to justifications for more war. Um, and, I don't want to obviously desecrate or disrespect memory of anyone that's fallen, and obviously there are individual circumstances in which there is genuine, tremendous heroism: hail of gunfire, rescuing fellow soldiers and things like that. But it seems to me that we marshal this word in a way that is problematic. But maybe I'm wrong about that.
MSNBC talking head previewing his discomfort today
UP WITH CHRIS HAYES
NEW YORK May 27, 2012 (NewsBusters)
Let us help you out with that, Chris. You're wrong.
There are certain professions that by the nature of the job are heroic, professions that protect lives at the risk of the protector's own. In Mr. Hayes's telling, to call these professionals who die in the line of duty "heroes" is "so rhetorically proximate to justifications for more" of whatever it was that got the professional killed. So calling the fireman who pulls on his turnout gear to battle fires a hero is "so rhetorically proximate to justifications for more" fires. [Pause.] How is that any less ridiculous than Mr. Hayes's Memorial Day complaint?
Oops! There it is. Mr. Hayes, who has never served in the military, has let the irrepressible liberal loathing of the military slip out. Liberal central has chastised its minions for being too obvious about this, but that was for show, because, guileless patriot, you are so easily assuaged.
Here is a bright fellow stuck with two hours to fill with in-depth liberal chat on Saturday and Sunday mornings between the hours of eight and ten when conservatives are cutting their lawns or in church and liberals are sleeping in. Like many liberals, Mr. Hayes is burdened with the aching need to reform the world the rest of us live in. Also like many liberals he is loaded up with simplistic pieties, biases, and notions. Mr. Hayes's reformation consists of loading you up with the same. Give Mr. Hayes a national TV show with no audience and why is anyone surprised that he should unmask himself?
Without heroes, the world would eventually calm down.
ALMOST INSTANT UPDATE: Mr. Hayes comes back strong with an apology blaming the rest of us for being so removed from the wars others fight and, guilt-ridden, propping ourselves up with an empty holiday. Were things not so, Mr. Hayes would not have made his shallow remark to expose the shallowness of the rest of us. Mr. Hayes:
On Sunday, in discussing the uses of the word "hero" to describe those members of the armed forces who have given their lives, I don't think I lived up to the standards of rigor, respect and empathy for those affected by the issues we discuss that I've set for myself. I am deeply sorry for that.
As many have rightly pointed out, it's very easy for me, a TV host, to opine about the people who fight our wars, having never dodged a bullet or guarded a post or walked a mile in their boots. Of course, that is true of the overwhelming majority of our nation's citizens as a whole. One of the points made during Sunday's show was just how removed most Americans are from the wars we fight, how small a percentage of our population is asked to shoulder the entire burden and how easy it becomes to never read the names of those who are wounded and fight and die, to not ask questions about the direction of our strategy in Afghanistan, and to assuage our own collective guilt about this disconnect with a pro-forma ritual that we observe briefly before returning to our barbecues.
But in seeking to discuss the civilian-military divide and the social distance between those who fight and those who don't, I ended up reinforcing it, conforming to a stereotype of a removed pundit whose views are not anchored in the very real and very wrenching experience of this long decade of war. And for that I am truly sorry.
Mr. Hayes is sorry and you're disconnected.
May 19, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Paul Krugman IV
Day 1,211 of CHOPE
Nobel laureate (the obligatory mention) and former Enron advisor Paul Krugman returns to the Big Stupid. His alien invasion scheme came to naught. Who thwarted the alien invaders and the consequent sure path to American prosperity?
Mediaite can't get out of the lede-box without a snort.
On Friday’s Live With Martin Bashir, New York Times economic columnist and Nobel Laureate Paul Krugman added new dimensions to the art of hyperbolic overstatement when he wondered aloud whether the GOP in Congress wholly consisted of moles attempting to "bring down America" from within.
"Hyperbolic overstatement", that would be hyperbole2. Messrs. Bashir and Krugman on camera together, that would be stupid2.
When asked by Bashir if House Majority Leader Rep. John Boehner was working to “further undermine America’s standing” in his efforts to insist that the debt ceiling not be raised again without accompanying spending cuts, Krugman agreed and said "Sometimes you do wonder if these guys are moles – Manchurian Candidates – for I don’t know who."
A mole* and a Manchurian Candidate are two very different things. A mole is a spy trained to infiltrate an organization, secure its trust, and raid its secrets. A Manchurian Candidate is an unwitting brainwashed automaton with a psychic trigger to execute a programmed plan, most famously, an assassination. But when intellectual dishonesty is the weapon of choice, imprecision is the least of complaints.
"If their real job is to bring down America," said Krugman. "Because they really are doing the best they can."
"What [Republicans] will do is threaten to destroy the economy unless they get what they want," said Krugman.
Because in politics, the only decent, the only patriotic choice is whatever Mr. Krugman happens to want at airtime or on deadline. To choose differently is to destroy America. Representative government means nothing compared to the fine ideas of Mr. Krugman.
It has been said repeatedly, but only because it so often bears repeating, that it was Krugman who took to his blog in the New York Times hours after Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was shot through the head by an extremist to blame the episode on Republican Congressional Representatives-elect and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s innocuous map. This is also a famed opinion leader who called the Bush White House "evil and stupid".
"Evil and stupid" the trademark cake-and-eat-it-too liberal smear, as the link above explains.
We wouldn't go so far as saying that left-liberal-progressive movers are wholly stupid. Some are not stupid at all or not all-stupid, but choose to act stupid for effect or advantage. What at first blush appears to be stupidity, in fact is dishonesty. Mr. Krugman is not wholly stupid yet he advances a wholly stupid supposition to shock but not engage, because engagement -- an actual examination of the evidence behind the claim -- immediately exposes the imbecility of his supposition. Mr. Krugman knows this but makes the supposition anyway to stoke the fears -- not excite the critical judgment -- of those who only listen to the likes of Bashir & Krugman & co. That is dishonest. But it is a special kind of dishonest, it is intellectually dishonest.
Mr. Krugman fancies himself a smarty, yet makes an ad hominem argument against Republicans any schoolboy can slap down. Why? We imagine there are several reasons.
Foremost, the left listens only to itself, and then only to what is doctrinaire. This crowds out deviant opinion, which in turn encourages intellectual puny-ism, the phenomenon of college-credentialed people with low intellectual horizons and feeble intellectual skills. The left often styles itself and its low intellects as the "intellectual elite". These elites are not shy about thinking themselves smarter than you, gentle prole. Just don't ask them to prove it.
Another reason is winning argumentation is hard. A winning argument needs to conform to the available facts (requiring their acquaintance), the whole needs to have a logical hang, its defenses must anticipate and be better than its critics' assaults, and the presentation must be persuasive. So much easier to calumniate. Ask Mr. Krugman.
Finally, stupid is the received state of contemporary left discourse. And the discoursers are legion. To carve out a little space in the media sweeps, lefty pundits, columnists, commentators, and politicians assert louder and more bizarre claims so as to be heard above and stand apart from the cacophony of bizarre lefty claims. Works like a charm, as you see Mr. Krugman's big stupid has drawn us out.
Big stupid today. Big stupid everyday.
* Not to be confused with these good guys in Mao tunics.
May 16, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Chris Matthews
Day 1,208 of CHOPE
Mr. Matthews is a self-professed liberal. It's better than even money that he thinks he is smarter than you. He thinks he is smarter than Sarah Palin. A whole lot smarter.
On at least four occasions, MSNBC's Chris Matthews mocked Sarah Palin for how he felt she'd do if she were ever on the hit television game show Jeopardy!
[O]n October 2, 2008, shortly before that evening's Vice Presidential debate, [Mr. Matthews] said of Palin:Is this [vice presidential debate] about her brain power?... Do you think cute will beat brains?...Do you think she’d do better on the questions on Jeopardy! or the interview they do during a half-time?...My suspicion is that she has the same lack of intellectual curiosity that the President of the United States has right now and that is scary!
Then on January 12, 2010:They find these empty vessels who know nothing about the world! Nothing about foreign policy! Who immediately begin to spout the neo-con line. I read her book — it’s full of that crap....It’s unbelievable how little this woman knows!...Don’t put her on Jeopardy!
And again on November 2, 2010:Senator, do you think Sarah Palin is qualified to be President of the United States?...If she were on Jeopardy! right now and the topic was national government, American government generally defined, would she look like an imbecile, or would she look okay? Does she know anything?
And finally on January 19, 2011:I’d like to see her on just a couple of episodes of Celebrity Jeopardy! or It’s Academic Mac McGarry to just see if she knows anything.
You see where this is going.
CHRIS MATTHEWS BOMBS ON 'JEOPARDY!'
AFTER REPEATEDLY MOCKING PALIN
FOR HOW SHE'D DO
By Noel Sheppard
May 15, 2012 (NewsBusters)
Mr. Sheppard recounts Mr. Matthews flub highlights leading up to this:
[W]hen Double Jeopardy! ended, Matthews had a whopping $4,600, almost $10,000 behind O'Leary and over $8,000 less than Gibbs.
As they all missed a very tough Final Jeopardy! question, the game concluded with Gibbs having $5,600, O'Leary $4,200, and Matthews pulling up the rear at only $2,300.
Supremely confident Brainiac running almost $10K behind the leader, bets only half his money in the Final Jeopardy! round. Had he answered correctly he would've finished with $6,900 knowing Ms. O'Leary could bet nothing and win (she had almost $14K, so betting nothing neither opponent could catch her by betting all and doubling their money). Sportingly she bet large. Chris Matthews bet small because he gave up on winning. Instead he bet on his opponents losing. Here is the blustery go-for-it-all Mr. Matthews on December 18, 2009:
Most of the elected, the vast majority of the elected liberals, want to go for the gold, grab what victory's attainable and build on it in the future. You know where I stand.
We may never know how Sarah Palin might fare on Jeopardy!, but we now know how Mr. Matthews fared. Loser.
May 08, 2012
NYC Letter: Joe Biden Is An Idiot XVIII -- אױ װײ*
Day 1,200 of CHOPE
ATLANTA May 8, 2012 (ABC News) - Vice President Biden today spoke in Atlanta to The Rabbinical Assembly, an international group of more than 1,600 conservative rabbis.
... The rabbi introducing him says, with Biden standing behind him to his right: "Were Joe Biden not the Vice President of the United States, but still a senator from the state of Delaware, a position that he held with great distinction for 36 years, it would still be a signal…"
At the mention of how long he served in the Senate, Biden makes the sign of the cross on himself – to laughter and applause from the rabbis in the audience.
The rabbi introducing him is confused. Biden leans in and whispers and explanation as to why everyone’s laughing…
[Hat tip: Hervé]
Mr. Biden went on, shown in the embedded video, to explain his actions to the larger audience.
As is been observed, I've been doing this job in high public office a long time. [Grins. Awkward pause.] As a matter of fact I've held high public office longer than I was alive before I held high public office. [Grins and waits for joke to take.] And, ah, when I kidded with you, and, ah, blessed my, th-the reason they were laughing, rabbi, when you said 36 years, I did what my mother would, Joe, God bless me for that, y'know, and I was, ah, I-ah, well any rate, I, I am, I'm honored to be back with you.
Got that? [We wait on your getting.] The real joke is, as usual, Mr. Biden himself. A resume Catholic, out of communion with the Church, his sign of the cross is a personal affectation performed here to play the clownish goy. Anything for a vote becomes anything for a laugh.
The sign of the cross, signum crucis, is a Catholic sacramental. It is often accompanied by the explicit Trinitarian profession, "In nomine Patris, et Filii, et Spiritūs Sancti." Of course, Jews, most especially conservative rebbes, only recognize the first term. Lucky for Joe, the Jews, with their long history of persecution and derogation, take unintended discourtesy in stride. Now, imagine Mr. Biden forgetting himself and signing the cross at a gathering of imams. [We imagine Mr. Biden's jokey signing before a conservative Muslim audience.]
Next in line for the presidency. God preserve Mr. Obama.
* אױ װײ = oy vey, Oh, woe! (Oh no! – literally, 'Oh, pain!', cf. German "Oh Weh!").
May 05, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Ted Turner
Day 1,197 of CHOPE
The left has lots and lots of ideas (and this and this and this) for saving the world. Just don't ask them to explain how any of them actually work. Things will just work out because of their immense faith in, ah-um, their ideas.
Ted Turner has an idea for saving the world. But when he attempts to explain how its benefits will materialize, the rainbows evaporate and the unicorns prance away leaving Mr. Turner stumbling from one non sequitur to the next.
May 4, 2012 (NewsBusters) - Appearing as a guest on Thursday's Piers Morgan Tonight on CNN, the news network's founder, Ted Turner, complained that a double standard exists between the U.S. and Israel being allowed to possess nuclear weapons while Iran is expected to be nuclear-free, as he suggested that all countries dispose of their nuclear arsenals to persuade Iran not to build such weapons. ... Below is a transcript of the relevant portion of the Thursday, May 3, Piers Morgan Tonight on CNN:
PIERS MORGAN: What would you do about Iran if you were the American President?
TED TURNER: Well, first of all, I believe in total nuclear disarmament. That's the only way we're ever going to get there. We all got to play by the same set of rules. We have 2,000 or several thousand nuclear weapons. Iran has none at the current time. It's okay for Israel to have 100, but it's not okay for Iran to have two. That's, that's, you're not treating everybody equally.
You have no strong position except force. Only by force can it be done. I think we've already voted at the U.N. and the Security Council to get rid of nuclear weapons. Let's get rid of them. Let's get rid of ours, and then Iran will stop, I believe, and everybody else will because if everybody doesn't have them, then we're safe - at least safe from a nuclear attack.
I mean, if we have full-scale nuclear exchange, it's going to destroy life on Earth, all life. Maybe there will be a few cockroaches left, but that's all, and I find that crazy. This is such a nice world, and most of the people are really nice here.
But, you know, and if you treat people with dignity, respect, and friendliness like I did with the Russians and the Soviets before them with the Goodwill Games, if you try and make friends, you can make friends and you can do that even with former enemies. Japan bombed us at Pearl Harbor, and now we're good friends with the japanese. We fought China in the Cold War, but now we're good friends with the Chinese, most of us are.
Where to begin? Is it worth the effort to parse something so astonishingly stupid?
Let's begin with the "rules". Iran is a non-nuclear-weapon state signatory to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). Israel is not a signatory. Iran has chosen to bind itself to a treaty making it "not okay for Iran to have two [nuclear weapons]" (Article II). Those are the rules to which Iran has freely acquiesced. The same treaty recognizes the United States as one of five nuclear weapon states, an existing condition, the legitimacy of which Iran, again, as an NPT signatory, acknowledges. The international pressure on Iran to end its nuclear weapons program is not an unequal application of the rules -- but the rules established by treaty -- signed and ratified by Iran -- to which signatories are obliged to conform.
Mr. Turner abruptly turns from "treating everybody equally" to introduce this propsoition: "You have no strong position except force. Only by force can it be done." This upturns the feeble NPT rules already in place for a strong arm approach. This approach is best illustrated in Thucydides' Melian Dialogue wherein the strong have their way with the weak. A complete contradiction right after Mr. Turner's plea for equal treatment.
As for the vote "at the U.N. and the Security Council to get rid of nuclear weapons", that is a complete fabrication by Mr. Turner.
Mr. Turner ends supremely confident in his breezy "play nice and make friends" admonition. All that is required is that Israel and America, neither of whose nuclear arsenals are in violation of international law, unilaterally disarm and Iran will end its unlawful nuclear weapons program. And, of course, as goes Iran, so go Russia and China and North Korea and Pakistan and India. And in the rush of disarmament, terrorists will be quick to jump aboard, forswearing the acquisition and use of nuclear weapons, confining themselves to tedious one-head-at-a-time terrorist beheadings. Easy. Peezy. [Pause.] Mr. Turner seems to think Iran only wants nuclear weapons to keep even with Israel (and this). [An iterative pause for patience.] Iran wants nuclear weapons to better advance its declared intention to wipe Israel "off the map".
Mr. Turner rose to prominence as a shrewd businessman. Yet here he is shilling a business proposition so flimsy, so badly conceived, that, as a businessman, he would never buy. He would never consider. He would never touch.
The kindest thing that can be said of Mr. Turner is he has no idea what he is talking about. A fairer assessment is that he is dope who, at his beck, can appear on national television and deleteriously misinform the public. The truth is Mr. Turner is a pernicious stooge. A big stupid for the bad guys.
May 03, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Début! Mr. Obama
Day 1,195 of CHOPE
UPDATE 05.04.12: Welcome, Hot Air folk.
Super Special Presidential Edition
His very self. It was only a matter of time.
Regular skimmers may recall Mr. Obama's claim that he only hires the less competent. Obviously a bad policy.
No. You read that right.
May 2, 2012 (algemeiner.com) - American Jewish artist and Nazi supporter Gertrude Stein was cited yesterday in a White House proclamation in honor of Jewish American Heritage Month 2012
The official release which praises Jewish contributions to American society includes the following statement:Their history of unbroken perseverance and their belief in tomorrow’s promise offers a lesson not only to Jewish Americans, but to all Americans. From Aaron Copland to Albert Einstein, Gertrude Stein to Justice Louis Brandeis.
The folk at Algemeiner had the foresight to make a screen capture.
Stein, who’s exhibition currently on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, was strongly criticized by Harvard Law Professor [Alan Dershowitz] in an Algemeiner column yesterday, where he wrote:Gertrude Stein was herself a major collaborator with the Vichy regime and a supporter of its pro-Nazi leadership. ... Stein’s closest friend, and a man who greatly influenced her turn toward fascism was Bernard Fay, who the Vichy government put in charge of hunting down Masons, Jews and other perceived enemies of the State. Fay was more than a mere collaborator as suggested by the Met exhibit. He was a full blown Nazi operative, responsible for the deaths of many people. After the war, when the horrendous results were known to all, Gertrude wrote in support of Fay when he was placed on trial for his Nazi war crimes.
Team Barry is on it! Gertrude Stein -- down the memory hole!
UPDATE: In an email to the Algemeiner, Matt Lehrich, a White House spokesman claimed that the inclusion of Gertrude Stein in the proclamation was a mistake. He wrote, "A version of this proclamation was sent out in error. The corrected final version has now been issued."
Please note that the most transparent administration in the history of the world chose to delete Ms. Stein without annotation. Perhaps no one will've notice. Oh. Wait. We already have!
The new release, dated May 2nd, omits the reference to Stein and the other Jewish Americans originally mentioned.
Ms. Stein takes Aaron Copland, Albert Einstein, and Justice Louis Brandeis with her. The worthy deleted with the unworthy. Once bitten -- Team Barry isn't taking any chances. If only Team Barry had access to an encyclopedic repository of some sort to fact check Mr. Obama's public remarks. Something they could access easily, say, from a computer. If only someone would invent the Internet. Oh. Wait.
Now some will argue that this is sloppy staff work, not Mr. Obama's big stupid. We would argue that Mr. Obama made the hires, pointedly didn't hire anyone more competent than himself, then "hereunto set my hand" to the proclamation. This flub is consistent with the quality of staff work by this White House, which Mr. Obama has never troubled himself to improve. It's his staff. It's his big stupid.
Mr. Hitler: "It will be in the cloud forever..."
April 20, 2012
NYC Letter: Joe Biden Is An Idiot XVII -- "Legalizing Rattlesnakes"
Day 1,182 of CHOPE
There's everyday stupid. This is the preserve of snotty counter help, the DMV, and telemarketers. There's big stupid. This is reserved for brainless talking heads, idiot politicians, the Chichuachuas of the "entertainment" industry, bigots on high perches, and the can't-be-bothered-to-make-an-effort phonies. Then -- [Pause for effect.] Then there is Joe Biden.
PHOENIX April 20, 2012 (WaEx) - Vice President Joe Biden turned to a counter-productive metaphor yesterday, as he likened President Obama's policies to "legalizing rattlesnakes" in a hotel during an attempt to praise the president.
Biden was trying to praise Obama for courageous decisions. "Obama knew that some actions were going to be unpopular, such as the financial sector bailout," the pool reporter characterized Biden as saying last night. "'That would be like legalizing rattlesnakes in the lobbies of hotels in Arizona,' Biden quipped," according to the pooler.
"That's why I love this guy," he added at the Phoenix fundraiser.
When a trope goes wrong, often enough of the intent is in evidence to guess where it was meant to go. [Pause.] We have no idea where Mr. Biden was taking this. Stupid law requires an equal measure of "gutsy" stupidity? That bad policy is inherently dangerous? Mr. Obama is planning a little payback for Governor Brewer for her finger wag (and this)? Mr. Biden's trope is so completely failed all we can be sure about its intended destination is that it never arrived.
April 19, 2012
NYC Letter: Know-Nothing With An Opinion -- Brian Schweitzer
Day 1,181 of CHOPE
The world is lousy with donkeys.
April 19, 2012 (TDB) - While discussing swing states, [Montana Democrat Governor Brian] Schweitzer said Romney would have a "tall order to position Hispanics to vote for him," and I replied that was mildly ironic since Mitt’s father was born in Mexico, giving the clan a nominal claim to being Hispanic. Schweitzer replied that it is "kinda ironic given that his family came from a polygamy commune in Mexico, but then he’d have to talk about his family coming from a polygamy commune in Mexico, given the gender discrepancy." Women, he said, are "not great fans of polygamy, 86 percent were not great fans of polygamy. I am not alleging by any stretch that Romney is a polygamist and approves of [the] polygamy lifestyle, but his father was born into [a] polygamy commune in Mexico."
Oh yeah, polygamy is going to be a huge. The monogamous Mr. Romney may as well spend the next six-plus months working on his concession speech.
Oh. No. Wait.
THE POLYGAMISTS IN
OBAMA AND ROMNEY’S FAMILY TREES
By David Maraniss
April 12, 2012 (WaPo) - The line of polygamists in Obama’s family can be traced back generations in western Kenya, where it was an accepted practice within the Luo (pronounced LOO-oh) tribe. His great-grandfather, Obama Opiyo, had five wives, including two who were sisters. His grandfather, Hussein Onyango, had at least four wives, one of whom, Akumu, gave birth to the president’s father, Barack Obama, before fleeing her abusive husband. Obama Sr. was already married when he left Kenya to study at the University of Hawaii, where he married again. His American wife-to-be, Stanley Ann Dunham, was not yet 18 and unaware of his marital situation when she became pregnant with his namesake son in 1961.
The line of polygamists in the Romney family traces back generations, when it was an accepted practice in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. His paternal great-grandfathers, Miles Park Romney and Helaman Pratt, were born in the United States but lived for decades in Mexico. ... Pratt had five wives. Miles Park Romney had four, and 30 children, one of whom was Gaskell Romney. The polygamy stopped at Gaskell, who had a single wife and seven children. One of the children, George, was born in a Mormon colony in the state of Chihuahua, Mexico, although he was nonetheless a U.S. citizen. He was Mitt’s father.
[Hat tip: Gateway Pundit]
And forecasting backwards the governor's prediction proves out! Mr. Obama with his one-generation-removed polygamist past failed to carry Montana (47.17%/49.43%) in 2008. Throw in Mr. Obama's abusive grandfather and the women's vote was lost for good. [Double-take.] Wait a minute. Mr. Obama carried the women's vote 56%/43%. H-ha-how could that be?
Here's a guess. Maybe Republican governors weren't trying to put a polygamist stink on Mr. Obama in 2008. Second guess, maybe women voters were smart enough not to mistake Mr. Obama for his father or his grandfather.
In 2008 the press superficially vetted candidate Obama -- when it wasn't boosting him. In 2012 this has come back to bite an uninformed left who know as little about their candidate Barack Obama (and themselves) as the MSM's low-information voter. Or the willfully ignorant among the MSM itself.
Polygamy, one remove or two? The burning non-issue of 2012.
April 18, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Début! Harry Reid
Day 1,180 of CHOPE
With the obvious exceptions of the big-stupids-for-life and the big-stupids-every-other-day, most big stupids are one-offs. People do some big stupid thing, are caught out, and rein themselves back to smaller less noticeable stupidities. So why do we note some big stupids' débuts and not others?
Because, perplexed taxonomist, some big stupids are achingly expected but come late to our party. This is through no fault of their own. They are plenty stupid. But competition is fierce and we have limited ourselves to one a day. Also posting on stupid takes much longer than posting on smart. So when a big stupid with a long history of stupid makes the cut, we like to give it a little extra toot.
Now that we have smoothed your furrowed brow, without further ado, we present the big stupid début of -- wait for it -- TOOT!
Mr. Reid is the facts-be-damned (and this), do-nothing (and this and this -- Oh! and this), know-nothing (and this), clueless Constitutionalist (and abdicator), post-racial racialist, straight-to-overstock author who leads the Democrat majority in the Senate. [Pause.] And for good measure he is an artless liar. He is one of the least liked leaders in Congress (27% favorable/48% unfavorable), second only to long-reign bottom queen Nancy "In The Bag" Pelosi (31%/60%).
WASHINGTON April 18, 2012 (The Hill) - In his opening speech on Wednesday, [Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV)] called on the Senate to quickly move forward on the passage of S. 1789, the 21st Century Postal Service Act, which restructures pension plans for Postal Service employees as well as allows the USPS to access overpayments in the Federal Employee Retirement System. Mr. Reid:Madam President, [addressing Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), the presiding officer of the Senate] I'll come home tonight here to my home in Washington and there'll be some mail there. A lot of it is what some people refer to as junk mail, but for the people who are sending that mail, it's very important.
And when talking about seniors, seniors love getting junk mail. It's sometimes their only way of communicating or feeling like they're part of the real world. Elderly Americans, more than anyone in America, rely on the United States Postal Service, but unless we act quickly, thousands of post offices ... will close. I've said this earlier today; I repeat it.
Although we can't speak to the merits of S.1789, there are many good reasons to reform and save the United States Postal Service. Junk mail isn't one of them. "Standard mail", the official party-dress term for junk mail, is a USPS make-work jobs program (USPS Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe: "If you work in the postal service, it’s jobs mail."). And like most make-work jobs programs it's a money loser:
Overall, the postal service says it makes money on advertising mail—but it could make more. Contributing to the agency's record $8.5 billion shortfall in fiscal year 2010 was a loss of $1.7 billion [20%] on several mail products that didn't cover costs, including advertising-mail flat packages—typically catalogs—advertising-mail parcels, and the separate category of periodicals, according to the Postal Regulatory Commission. The postal service said in fiscal 2010 standard mail covered nearly one and a half times its cost.
Sounds like it's making money, but consider this. The USPS physical plant, management, and employees were put in place foremost to service citizens' personal postal needs. Its junk mail operations are piggybacked on that business infrastructure. The numbers bear out that junk mail, charging half or less the rate of first class delivery, does not make a sustaining contribution to the USPS bottom line.
First-class mail accounted for 50%, or $34 billion, of the postal service's total revenue in the 2010 fiscal year. Advertising mail had higher volumes but brought in $17.3 billion, or only 26% of total revenue, due to hefty discounts and lower rates.
First-class mail has declined in tandem with its higher rate creep. It is cost as much as convenience that has pushed correspondents onto the Internet. Higher first-class rates subsidize the lower junk mail rates, or put differently, lower junk mail rates cannibalize higher first class margins.
What junk mail volumes do is keep postal workers busy. And the USPS wants more. It sees its fiscal salvation in theoretically unlimited volumes of junk mail. But every physical system has limits.
Consumers received 82.5 billion pieces of advertising mail through the postal service in 2010, down 20% from a 2007 peak of 103.5 billion pieces, but far more than the 63.7 billion pieces they received in 1990.
But Harry Reid isn't arguing any of this. No, Harry Reid is arguing the sentimental value of junk mail to abandoned seniors, who eagerly await not birthday cards and letters from grandchildren but impersonal junk mail. Because in Harry Reid's "real world" the elderly are this pathetic and you are a rube. [Pause.] We challenge Mr. Reid's depiction of an isolated vitiated elderly class (and this, for examples) wringing empty joy from junk mail.
In Ray Bradbury's The Great Wide World Over There* such a world exists. Large rural tracts, bypassed by modernity, bereft of phones, radios, television, and newspapers, await the arrival of Mr. Reid's "real world" at the mailbox. But Mr. Bradbury was penning stylish pathos not a floor speech in defense of funding the USPS.
Big stupid. Bears repeating.
* From the short story collection The Golden Apples of the Sun (New York: Doubleday & Company, 1953), №14
April 06, 2012
NYC Letter: Know-Nothing With An Opinion -- Joy Behar
Day 1,168 of CHOPE
Joy Behar is a comedienne whose comedy is based on intrepid exhibitions of her inborn stupidity. Her success -- what raises her above the general population of ignoramuses -- is her agent's canny bookings on national showcases where Ms. Behar is asked semi-serious questions to which she then gives exceptionally stupid responses. To wit.
Tuesday Sarah Palin guest co-hosted NBC's Today Show. This pit her against Katie "The Perky One" Couric guest hosting at ABC's Good Morning America and whatever CBS does in this time slot. Ms. Couric is a liberal heroine in the politically embroidered retelling of her 2008 interview with Ms. Palin. To bitter-sweeten the match-up, Ms. Couric co-hosted the Today Show for several years (1991-2006).
April 4, 2012 (National Journal) - Sarah Palin's appearance as a guest host on NBC's Today beat Katie Couric's guest hosting of ABC's Good Morning America in the ratings battle on Tuesday. The NBC morning show has held its 17-year ratings lead over its ABC rival for the first two days of this week.
With Palin guest hosting, Today drew just under 5.5 million total viewers on Tuesday, according to Nielsen Fast National data. Good Morning America drew 5.14 million viewers with Couric, who is filling in all week.
Monday's Today, which included announcements about upcoming Olympics coverage and Palin previewing her Tuesday appearance, topped Good Morning America by 333,000 viewers according to the Fast National Data.
Allahpundit at Hot Air has more number analysis showing Ms. Palin gave NBC a greater day-over-day viewer boost (390,000) than Ms. Couric managed at ABC (360,000).
In the teeth of the ratings win, the Los Angeles Times panned MS. Palin's guest spot. The damning evidence for LAT? Cherry-picked tweets. Elsewhere a disappointed MSM grudgingly acknowledged that Ms. Palin, nec non dixit, had not not had a little triumph.
Enter Ms. Behar.
April 5, 2012 (WaEx) - Last night, MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell hosted The View's Joy Behar to discuss Sarah Palin's co-hosting gig on the Today Show.
"Shouldn't she be turning some letters on some game show at this point?" Behar asked mockingly. "Why is she still involved in the conversation politically?"
Um, well, Joy, because hacks like Lawrence O'Donnell, for one and you, Joy, for another, keep talking about her. Oh, and because voters find her opinions purchase-worthy (Going Rogue: An American Life #10,943 in Amazon Best Seller Rank).
Behar admitted that Palin had "charisma," but added, "who cares what she thinks about at this point?"
Well, Joy, it looks like that would be you.
In other developments Ms. Behar is not asked to host any national morning talk shows, When You Need a Lift: But Don't Want to Eat Chocolate, Pay a Shrink, or Drink a Bottle of Gin hits #1,022,972 on Amazon Best Seller Rank, and the The Joy Behar Show remains cancelled. This is not to suggest the remotest comparability between Ms. Palin, a woman of accomplishments, and Joy Behar, an accomplished idiot. [Pause.] We're just saying.
Stupid with an opinion.
March 22, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Nancy Pelosi V
Day 1,153 of CHOPE
She's back. It's as if she lives in The Big Stupid.
March 21, 2012 (The Hill) - Speaking on the House floor, Pelosi called on her colleagues to remember "what our founders put forth in our founding documents, which is life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. And that is exactly what the Affordable Care Act helps to guarantee."
... Pelosi's comments stand in stark contrast to how many conservatives see the healthcare law — as a government overreach that intrudes on individuals' rights to libery, in particular the mandate that people buy health insurance.
Pelosi explained that the law gives people the flexibility they need to pursue these goals, since it makes it easier for them to switch jobs in order to pursue their career or family goals:A healthier life, the liberty to pursue happiness, free of the constraints that lack of healthcare might provide to a family. If you want to be photographer, a writer, an artist, a musician, you can do so. If you what to start a business, if you want to change jobs, under the Affordable Care Act, you have that liberty to pursue your happiness.
Before Obamacare people started businesses, changed jobs, became photographers, writers, artists, and musicians, but after Obamacare people can now do these very same things! [Double-take.] Hey! Wait a minute!
And so that is why I'm so pleased that this week we can celebrate the two-year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act.
Ahem. Not everybody will be celebrating.
March 21, 2012 (Politico) - While Friday marks the two-year anniversary of the signing of President Obama's signature health care law, the president has no plans to celebrate the occasion.
"I don’t anticipate a presidential marking of an anniversary that only those who toil inside the Beltway focus on," Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters on Air Force One Wednesday. "What this President is focused on and what his administration is focused on with regards to the Affordable Care Act is the implementation of the Affordable Care Act."
In not celebrating the two-year anniversary, Mr. Obama finally garners majority support.
Life. Liberty. Entitlement happiness.
January 27, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Nancy Pelosi III Redux Redux
Day 1,100 of CHOPE
When one lies, one should lie big, and stick to it.
Reichsminister für Volksaufklärung und Propaganda
January 12, 1941 (Die Zeit ohne Beispiel)
Nancy Pelosi sticks to her lie.
WASHINGTON January 26, 2012 (CNN) - Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi Thursday dismissed the idea she knows something secret about former House Speaker Newt Gingrich that would disqualify him from being president, saying it's just her "instinct" - based on the public record.
Pelosi ruled out Gingrich's chances of becoming the GOP nominee Tuesday when she told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King, "He's not going to be President of the United States. That's not going to happen."
It's nice of CNN to tidy up the transcript to push Ms. Pelosi's lie. However, here is what Ms. Pelosi said:
PELOSI: Let me just say this. That will never happen.
PELOSI: He's not going to be president of the United States. This is — that's not going to happen. Let me just make my prediction and stand by it. It isn't going to happen.
Q: Why are you so sure?
PELOSI: There's something I know.
If Ms. Pelosi was exercising her intuition as she now claims, then her Tuesday response would resemble her Thursday clarification. It doesn't. Ms. Pelosi did not beg her best guess, her gut, her intuition in the Tuesday interview. She alludes to something definite she knows, something outside the realm of opinion, that precludes a Gingrich presidency. "There's something I know," is not "That's something I know (i.e., by intuition, through instinct)." Or "I have a hunch," or "That's my guess."
What Ms. Pelosi says so plainly on Thursday, she could have said just as plainly on Tuesday. Instead she choose a construction that produced exactly the effect she wanted: to set off speculation about an indefensible impediment, some insuperable bar to a Gingrich presidency. Ms. Pelosi knows her original innuendo will long outlast any clarification. Or, were pigs to take wing, an apology.
It's a clumsy -- but effective -- lie. And she's sticking with it.
As we remark elsewhere:
Ms. Pelosi spends a lot of time lying, and yet she is not very good at it. Mostly she is not very clever about lying (and this and this and this). She is not very clever about lying because she thinks you are utterly stupid. You are so utterly stupid any old lie will do -- Ha! -- you'll never catch her out. Her contempt for your intelligence is boundless (oh, and this).
No penalties for well-played lies.
January 25, 2012
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Nancy Pelosi III Redux
Day 1,098 of CHOPE
Second Shot Innuendo Edition
Remember this? Nancy Pelosi claimed to be privy to damning confidential information on Newt Gingrich, which she would reveal, "When the time is right." Mr. Gingrich challenged her. Ms. Pelosi’s spokesman walked back the brag, insisting Ms. Pelosi's information did not extend beyond the public record.
If at first you don't succeed, lie, lie again! And do it on national television!
Here is Ms. Pelosi on CNN yesterday:
Q: Because of your history with Speaker Gingrich, what goes through your mind when you think about the possibility, which is more real today than it was a week or a month ago, that he would be the Republican nominee and that you could come back here next January or next February with a President Gingrich?
PELOSI: Let me just say this. That will never happen.
PELOSI: He’s not going to be president of the United States. This is — that’s not going to happen. Let me just make my prediction and stand by it. It isn’t going to happen.
Q: Why are you so sure?
PELOSI: There’s something I know. The Republicans, if they choose to nominate him, that’s the prerogative. I don’t even think that’s going to happen.
Once again, Mr. Gingrich challenged Ms. Pelosi to make good her brag.
NEWT CHALLENGES PELOSI:
"SPIT IT OUT!"
BLOG January 25, 2011 (Townhall)
Once again Ms. Pelosi's beleaguered spokesman walked back the brag.
January 25, 2011 (The Hill) - Pelosi has suggested in two interviews that she knows something that could prevent Gingrich from becoming president, but her office said the California Democrat doesn’t have any secrets about Gingrich, who has shot to the top of national Republican polls after winning the South Carolina primary.
... But on Wednesday, [Pelosi spokesman Drew] Hammill repeated that all of the information from the investigation is in the public realm.
The public record is pretty clear. Mr. Gingrich was exonerated, eventually, of all charges brought by the House Ethics Committee on which Ms. Pelosi sat.
The Gingrich case was extraordinarily complex, intensely partisan, and driven in no small way by a personal vendetta on the part of one of Gingrich’s former political opponents. It received saturation coverage in the press; a database search of major media outlets revealed more than 10,000 references to Gingrich’s ethics problems during the six months leading to his reprimand. It ended with a special counsel hired by the House Ethics Committee holding Gingrich to an astonishingly strict standard of behavior, after which Gingrich in essence pled guilty to two minor offenses. Afterwards, the case was referred to the Internal Revenue Service, which conducted an exhaustive investigation into the matter. And then, after it was all over and Gingrich was out of office, the IRS concluded that Gingrich did nothing wrong. After all the struggle, Gingrich was exonerated.
Clearly Ms. Pelosi is insinuating she possesses insider information. Whether she does or not is immaterial to the desired effect, which is to kneecap the Gingrich campaign with an unanswerable indictment. Were Ms. Pelosi to reveal confidential insider information, that would become a criminal matter, which is why Ms. Pelosi will play coy with her insinuations but never make good her brag.
Now. Remember this?
Nancy Pelosi (D-CA, 8th),
The American people voted to restore integrity and honesty in Washington, D.C., and the Democrats intend to lead the most honest, most open and most ethical Congress in history.
soon-to-be-Speaker, bragging on the Democratic
Congress-to-be, which subsequently institutionalized
self-dealing, secrecy, and self-excusing
WASHINGTON November 7, 2006 (WaPo)
Nancy Pelosi (D-CA, 8th),
Out of power, Ms. Pelosi turns her earlier Congressional superlatives on their heads.
January 19, 2012
NYC Letter: Know-Nothing With An Opinion -- Dick Harpootlian
Day 1,093 of CHOPE
Special Chasing Contessa Brewer Edition
What, curious skimmer, you may ask is the difference between a "Today's Big Stupid" post and a "Know-Nothing With An Opinion" post?
The former is anyone or anything that strikes us as achingly stupid. The latter is someone who offers an opinion on something without an acquaintance with, without so much as a nod to, the relevant facts. Because "Know-Nothing With An Opinion" is a recent theme, several earlier "Today's Big Stupid" honorees really are Know-Nothings (for examples, this and this and this) -- making Know-Nothings a special class of Big Stupid.
Contessa Brewer is a special class of this special class. A Know-Nothing caught flatfooted, caught in the very act of knowing nothing. This brings us to Know-Nothing Dick Harpootlian.
January 16, 2012 (Mediaite) - South Carolina Democratic Party Chair Dick Harpootlian objected earlier in the week on MSNBC to today’s Republican primary debate. Unlike the rest of America, he was not just objecting to the concept of having the watch the same candidates of the past year or so talk about the same things for another two hours– he considered it objectionable to have a debate on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and "ignore" the holiday. On tonight’s Bill O’Reilly, Harpootlian began to make the case, but was promptly silenced, jaw agape, as O’Reilly reminded him that the Democrats in his state did the exact same thing in 2008.
Mediaite goes on to give the blow-by-blow (the video segment at headline link):
Harpootlian did not remember what happened in 2008 (a Democratic primary debate on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day) and who sponsored it (the Congressional Black Caucus), which prompted several awkward seconds where Harpootlian was obviously caught flat-footed.
With this development, O’Reilly then told him that, "by injecting race into this, you do a disservice." Harpootlian finally replied, blaming Republicans for injecting race into the matter by calling this "the most important election since 1860." "We in the South have a little different version of that election," he noted, suggesting that talking to Southerners in such a way was a sort of dog whistle. O’Reilly disagreed and just asked Harpootlian to give it up, adding, "you’re getting killed here!"
December 23, 2011
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Nancy Pelosi IV
Day 1,066 of CHOPE
Nancy Pelosi, dominating the big stupid.
Nancy Pelosi lives in a world made terrible by Republicans and made sweet by Democrats. It is not the world we live in -- if you are not an irredeemable Democrat, most likely it is not the world you live in -- because it is an invented world, a phony world of phony alarms and phony facts and wand-waves and easy money and phony successes.
And behind the phony claims in Ms. Pelosi's phony world are Ms. Pelosi's phony numbers. From the office of the House minority leader:
WASHINGTON December 19, 2011 (pelosi.house.gov) - Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer and Assistant Democratic Leader James E. Clyburn held a press availability tonight in the Capitol calling on Republicans to pass the bipartisan compromise passed by the Senate that would extend the payroll tax cut for 160 million Americans. Below are Leader Pelosi’s opening remarks, closing statement, and a transcript of the question and answer session:And here’s what is at stake. 160 million Americans would have had a payroll tax cut, continue to have a payroll tax cut. Over 2 million people will lose their unemployment benefits if we don’t act upon the Senate resolution. 48 million Americans will lose the opportunity they have for choosing their own doctors under Medicare. This is very important. 160 million Americans, who are working, will get a tax cut. Over 2 million, who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own, will now lose their benefit. And again, 48 million seniors will have something to lose in this.
... Mr. Hoyer can read a list as long as my arm about the times they have walked way, and right now they’re walking away from the middle-income tax cut for 160 million Americans.
According to the latest BLS employment survey the total civilian labor force (i.e., civilian noninstitutional population) is 153M of which only 140.5M are employed. Adding the total armed services brings the employed to 142M. To benefit from a suspension of an employment tax, a beneficiary would need to be subject to the tax. If you are not employed, you are not subject to a tax on a job you do not have. [Pause.] How to account for Ms. Pelosi's phantom 18M differential? It's not a misspeak as her office headlines the number and repeats it four times in its press release. It is a number that is meant to stand.
Ms. Pelosi got her number wrong when getting it right was as simple as the few checks required for numerous bloggers to catch it. The intriguing question is why push 160M over 140M? One hundred forty million is a sufficiently big number to carry Ms. Pelosi's talking point. Does inflating the truthful number by 12% really improve Ms. Pelosi's stridency?
As with all pronouncements from the House minority leader there is such a flood of errors, fantasies, distortions, and lies who can catch them all? Not the layers and layers of editors and fact-checkers at The Christian Science Monitor or Bloomberg/Businessweek or Forbes or CNN or CBS News or MSNBC or USA Today all of whom reported the bogus 160M number without challenge.
Gilding the lily.
December 06, 2011
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Nancy Pelosi III
Day 1,049 of CHOPE
She's back. [A thousand groans.] Ms. Pelosi enjoyed the high perch of power. Now she is perched lower, an irrelevancy. She takes care to dress nice -- not too nice -- and has time on her hands --when not fundraising* and squeezing in the people's business.
And she's a gossip.
December 5, 2011 (The Hill) - House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is holding back some information on Republican Newt Gingrich that could detract from his presidential campaign, according to a report published Monday.
"One of these days we’ll have a conversation about Newt Gingrich," Pelosi told Talking Points Memo. "When the time is right. … I know a lot about him. I served on the investigative committee that investigated him, four of us locked in a room in an undisclosed location for a year. A thousand pages of his stuff."
Wait, aren't findings not in the public record protected by confidentiality rules of the House Select Committee on Ethics? Why, yes they are.
December 5, 2011 (therightscoop.com) - Newt today said that if Pelosi wants to disclose information about himself from when she was on the ethics committee, that the House should immediately file charges against her as that is a violation of the rules of the House:First of all I’d like to thank Speaker [sic] Pelosi for what I regard as an early Christmas gift. If she’s suggesting she’s gonna use material she developed while she was on the ethics committee, that is a fundamental violation of the rules of the House and I would hope members would immediately file charges against her the second she does it.
Nancy Pelosi served on the then-Committee on Standards of Official Conduct for three terms (102nd, 103rd, and 104th Congresses, 1991-1996 inclusive). This gets a one line mention on her CD site. In all that time, the confidential nature of committee investigations never made an impression on her. Apparently.
December 5, 2011 (ABC News) - House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi now says she is not sitting on a trove of opposition research on former House Speaker-turned-GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich.
In an interview conducted Friday and published Monday, Pelosi hinted that once the time is right she has some juicy stories to tell about her former colleague.
... But this afternoon, Pelosi’s spokesman, Drew Hammill, suggested that her comments have been misconstrued beyond the leader’s intent.
"Leader Pelosi was clearly referring to the extensive amount of information that is in the public record, including the comprehensive committee report with which the public may not be fully aware," Hammill wrote in a statement.
That ethics report, which can be found here, examined allegations that Gingrich violated House rules by using his congressional staff to aide him on a college course he taught called "Renewing American Civilization".
Mr. Hammill is, no surprise, lying for Ms. Pelosi. The House Select Committee on Ethics Report on Mr. Gingrich runs a total of 136 printed pages, of which only 127 pages are the findings proper. Ms. Pelosi plainly claimed, "A thousand pages of his stuff." She was clearly bragging on privy knowledge and materials from her committee work. Ms. Pelosi wasn't teasing TPM's with a rehash of the public record -- TPM doesn't need a Pelosi "conversation" for that -- but her privy knowledge of the committee's investigation.
Mr. Hammill hopes you are this stupid. Ms. Pelosi is sure you are.
* According to WaPo (November 17, 2011):
Pelosi has worked overtime to take back the House — attending 311 fundraising events nationwide and bringing home $26 million for Democrats.
November 20, 2011
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Nancy Pelosi Redux
Day 1,033 of CHOPE
We might add, today and any day Ms. Pelosi opens her mouth.
Nancy Pelosi is the queen of political whoredom. She is a deceiver. She lies (on many levels). She is a self-dealer. Ruthless in power and feckless in the minority, she is a smug, superior being, a person of privilege living large on the public weal. She is a hypocrite, a self-excuser. When convenient she is a politically correct shape-shifter. And she is stupid beyond belief -- willfully stupid -- stubbornly stupid -- fundamentally stupid -- for someone in a position of power. Which brings us round to today's big stupid.
Let's begin here.
WASHINGTON February 25, 2010 (LifeNews.com) - House Speaker Nancy Pelosi misled participants at the White House health care summit today by making the false statement that the Senate health care bill she, President Barack Obama and Democrats are pushing through Congress contains no abortion funding.
Pelosi’s comments came in response to pro-life House Republican Leader John Boehner telling President Barack Obama that Americans don’t want to be forced to finance abortions under the government-run health care bill. Ms. Pelosi:I think it’s really important to note, though, and I want the record to show, because two statements were made here that were not factual in relationship to these bills. My colleague, Leader Boehner, the law of the land is there is no public funding of abortion and there is no public funding of abortion in these bills and I don’t want our listeners or viewers to get the wrong impression from what you said.
But those bills did have public funding for abortion.
Douglas Johnson, the legislative director for the National Right to Life Committee, emailed LifeNews.com about Pelosi’s error:Every version of the health care bill has contained multiple pro-abortion mandates and federal subsidies for abortion — except for the version that was fixed by adoption of the Stupak-Pitts Amendment, over Speaker Pelosi’s objections. But President Obama and Senator Reid succeeded in keeping that fix out of the Senate bill — indeed, the Senate produced a final bill that is the most pro-abortion single piece of legislation to reach the floor of either house of Congress since Roe v. Wade.
Mr. Stupak was a fraud. And the Democrats passed Obamacare with the abortion funding provisions intact. Fast forward to the 2011 Republican House passing The Protect Life Act, which prohibits public funds, including tax credits and cost-sharing reductions, to be used for abortions or abortion coverage. This makes good in law what Ms. Pelosi asserted had been the intent of Obamacare all along. [Pause.] Except Ms. Pelosi's assertion was a lie. She is now outraged that Republicans have acted on her lie.
WASHINGTON October 13, 2011 (LifeNews.com) - Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi took her pro-abortion rhetoric to a new level, today saying Republicans "want women to die on the floor" in expressing her opposition to a bill stopping taxpayer funding of abortions in Obamacare.For a moment, I want to get back to what was asked about the issue on the floor today that Mr. Hoyer address. He made a point and I want to emphasize it. Under this bill, when the Republicans vote for this bill today, they will be voting to say that women can die on the floor and health care providers do not have to intervene if this bill is passed. It’s just appalling.
The Protect Life Act has no provisions directing women to die on the floor. It reinstates conscience protections that exempt pro-life medical workers from complicity in abortions. In Ms. Pelosi's view conscience protections are wrong because conscience gums up the esprit de corps of complicity that makes abortions normative. It's hard to ease abortion into the national consciousness as a routine medical procedure if we're not all in this together.
Which brings us round to Ms. Pelosi's latest big stupid.
Pelosi recently was criticized for the way she characterized a bill to amend Republican-proposed conscience exemptions for health-care reform that allow providers to refuse to perform abortions. Pelosi called the measure, which passed last month with some help from Democrats, "savage," and said, "When the Republicans vote for this bill today, they will be voting to say that women can die on the floor and health-care providers do not have to intervene, if this bill is passed. It’s just appalling."
In retrospect, does she think that assessment went too far? Not at all, she said: "They would" let women die on the floor, she said. "They would! Again, whatever their intention is, this is the effect."
Catholic health-care providers in particular have long said they’d have to go out of business without the conscience protections that Pelosi says amount to letting hospitals “say to a woman, 'I’m sorry you could die' if you don’t get an abortion." Those who dispute that characterization "may not like the language," she said, "but the truth is what I said. I’m a devout Catholic and I honor my faith and love it ... but they have this conscience thing" that she insists put women at physical risk, although Catholic providers strongly disagree.
Ms. Pelosi is not a devout Catholic. Her advocacy of abortion puts her out of communion with the Church. Ms. Pelosi exploits her résumé Catholicism as a nihil obstat for abortion. You see, if "devout Catholic" Nancy can support abortions -- well, there are no excuses in conscience to hold you back.
What conscience thing?
November 11, 2011
NYC Letter: Today's Big Stupid -- Début! Nancy Pelosi
Day 1,024 of CHOPE
Special Big Stupid WITH
¡Cojones Gigantescos! Edition
Nancy Pelosi makes her Big Stupid début!
(A) Q: Congress, oh, for goodness sakes. Such a -- they're so sweet. Their approval rating right now is slightly below -- from what I understand -- hepatitis C.
And you wonder who are these people who approve of Congress. This 9%.
Why do you think that is? Is it --
Well, let me -- You know the last time I was here, in April of 2009, that was the last time I was on the show. The rating -- The Democrats were in control, ah, the Congressional rating was 40%. Forty percent. Do you remember that?
... Q: That's a solid D.
* * * * * *
(B) Q: See. This is where it's difficult for -- you know, when the Democrats were in charge, they had an opportunity to put forth a-a budget. And -- they didn't take it. They didn't take the shot. They di--right before the debt ceiling. Remember how, right before in that session they could have put forth a budget, a specific budget, like the one we put forth, that would have triggered -- I guess they call it the Gephardt Rule, that debt ceiling rule. They didn't do it. Am I incorrect?
Because the Republicans would have fillerbusted [sic] filibustered it.
Yes. Career politician. The once mighty Speaker of the House, ranked at the time by Forbes the 26th (2007), 35th (2008 and 2009) and 11th (2010)* most powerful woman in the world.* Second in succession to the presidency of the United States. [Pause.] And she is this stupid.
First (B). This is the sort of thing, if you missed it in eighth grade civics, is covered in your freshman Congressional orientation. To wit:
The Congressional Budget Act governs the role of Congress in the budget process. Among other provisions, it affects Senate rules of debate during the budget reconciliation, not least by preventing the use of the filibuster against the budget resolutions.
So there was never any Republican filibuster threat. And had there been, Mr. Reid, the majority leader, could have invoked the "nuclear option". In fact he did invoke it recently to prevent a vote on Mr. Obama's jobs bill -- after Mr. Obama's insistence on an immediate vote.
Ms. Pelosi makes the same Republican filibuster claim later in the interview, so the first instance wasn't some lapse. Ms. Pelosi is a 13-term representative. She was a 2-term Speaker. And she is this stupid.
Wait. Mr. Obama did submit a budget. Hhmmm, whatever happened to that?
May 25, 2011 (The Hill) - The Senate voted unanimously on Wednesday to reject a $3.7 trillion budget plan that President Obama sent to Capitol Hill in February.
"Unanimously"? Isn't that everybody in the Democrat controlled Senate? ["Sink in" pause.] That would be all the Democrats.
Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) demanded a vote on Obama’s budget to show that Democrats don’t support any detailed budget blueprint. ... He noted during a floor speech Wednesday that Democrats initially applauded the plan. ... Democratic senators at the time called it “an important step forward”, “a good start” and a “credible blueprint.”
No Democratic senator was willing to support it, however, after Obama discussed a more ambitious plan at George Washington University to save $4 trillion over 12 years. Republicans criticized his speech for lacking detail.
The White House Office of Management and Budget declined to comment on the president's budget receiving zero votes in the Senate.
The Senate also rejected the House-passed budget sponsored by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), which failed on a 40-57 vote.
May 25, 2011 (The Hill) - The Senate on Wednesday resoundingly rejected a budget sponsored by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) that calls for significant cuts to future Medicare benefits.
... Every Democrat voted no except for Sen. Charles Schumer (N.Y.), who did not vote.
The Senate also shot down two other budget proposals.
Now (A). There are several polls that track Congressional approval, so Ms. Pelosi might have found a poll with a big fat juicy 40% Congressional approval for April of 2009. Gallup polled Congressional approval at 34%, the historical average approval rating, so no great shakes. At RCP the average of several polls for Congressional approval in April 2009 never tops 36.5% (April 1). But these are quibbles. Between April 2009 and Ms. Pelosi's recent TDS appearance, approval of the Democrat Congress cratered, climaxing in their historic midterm rout.
A year after Ms. Pelosi's 2009 TDS appearance Gallup polled approval of the Democrat Congress at 23% (April 2010). Heading into the midterms, the Democrat Congress had slipped back to 18% approval (September 2010). By December of last year, the vacating Democrat Congress made approval history.
CONGRESS' JOB APPROVAL RATING
WORST IN GALLUP HISTORY
Thirteen Percent Approve Of The Way
Congress Is Handling Its Job
PRINCETON December 15, 2010 (Gallup)
And when all was said and done, the all Democrat Congress flunked out.
111TH CONGRESS AVERAGED 25% APPROVAL,
AMONG RECENT LOWEST
Pelosi Has Presided Over Least Popular Congresses
Of Past Two Decades
PRINCETON January 5, 2011 (Gallup) -- The 111th Congress received an average 25% approval rating from Americans over the course of 2009 and 2010. While this is similar to the 23% average approval rating for the 110th Congress spanning 2007 and 2008, it is among the lowest average approval ratings for a Congress that Gallup has recorded in the past two decades.
From the beginning, the tip-off is Ms. Pelosi bragging on 40% in the first place. Even Mr. Stewart snorts.
* Current ranking №52, 41 pegs below Lady Gaga (№11). How are the mighty fallen...slain in thine high places. (2 Samuel 1:25, KJV)
October 14, 2011
NYC Letter: Know-Nothing With An Opinion -- Joe Biden
Day 996 of CHOPE
Mr. Obama never read the stimulus bill (final 407 pages) nor the Obamacare bill (final 906 pages) before signing them into law. Democrats openly scoffed at the idea of reading their handiwork before voting on it.
Neither did Mr. Holder -- if you believe DOJ -- read his weekly briefings on Operation Fast And Furious, which allowed straw buys of thousands of guns in America that were walked across the border to Mexican drug cartels.
Reading is hard. [Pause.] Cue Mr. Biden.
October 12, 2011 (TDC) - Appearing on ABC’s "Good Morning America," Biden acknowledged that he’s "not totally familiar with" Cain’s plan, but described it as "more of the same," saying it’s "consistent" with the GOP desire to cut taxes for the rich.
"How many times do we have to go back to that horror movie? Deregulate everything, don’t do anything about taxes for millionaires and billionaires, and continue the tax burden on small- and middle-class people, small-income people. I think it’s more of the same," Biden said.
Admittedly unfamiliar with Mr. Cain's 9-9-9 proposal, Mr. Biden does not shrink from boldly, blindly hammering it with the usual Democrat pieties. "Deregulate everything" -- except the proposal doesn't deregulate anything. "Continue the tax burden" -- is Mr. Biden suggesting the Democrats are prepared to discontinue "the tax burden on small- and middle-class people, small-income people"?
Intrepid opinion. Minus the facts.
October 23, 2008
NYC Letter: Joe Biden Is An Idiot
Countdown 12 days to go
Joe Biden is an idiot. The press knows he's an idiot, so why bother to bring it up (and this)? He is a special idiot because he is Mr. Obama's idiot, which makes him the press's idiot as well (and this). Smooth-talking but inexperienced Mr. Obama sought to balance his ticket with bumbling but experienced Joe Biden.
Idiocy is not the worst of it. Joe Biden is a resume Catholic with the convenient poll-tested self-serving convictions of a resume Catholic. He is opportuning, risibly arrogating, ungracious, clueless (and this and this), and desperate. Desperate to be a bigger footnote in history. In short, he is a small man who wants to be a big man without the natural capacity to be a big man. Joe Biden has attached himself to Mr. Obama, a man he believes not ready for the presidency, in hopes of advancing into the ranks of Trivial Pursuit.
Sarah Palin is not an idiot. Her story is inspiring, her accomplishments are real. The issue with Sarah Palin is does she have the experience to be a vice president? A demanding ceremonial job which requires being at the beck of the president, making appearances and dressing nice, and outliving the sitting chief executive.
How can lack of qualifying vice presidential experience be so vital, so gravely penalize a McCain/Palin ticket, when no qualifying presidential experience -- or any executive experience whatsoever -- is not an issue at all for the top of the Obama/Biden ticket?
What's wrong with this picture? Daniel Henninger picks up the complaint.
OP-ED October 23, 2008 (WSJ) - The complaint against the Alaska governor, at its most basic, is that she doesn't qualify for admission to the national political fraternity. Boy, that's rich. Behold the shabby frat house that says it's above her pay grade.
Congress has the lowest approval rating ever registered in the history of polling (12%!). She isn't the reason polls are showing people want the entire Congress fired, with many telling pollsters they themselves could do a better job.
Sarah Palin didn't design a system of presidential primaries whose length and cost ensures that only the most obsessional personalities will run the gauntlet, while a long list of effective governors don't run.
These rules have wasted the electorate's time the past three presidential elections, by filling the debates with such zero-support candidates as Dennis Kucinich, Mike Gravel, Al Sharpton, Duncan Hunter, Chris Dodd, Joe Biden (8,000 total votes), Wesley Clark and Alan Keyes.
Out of this process has fallen a Democratic nominee who entered the U.S. Senate in 2005 fresh off a stint in the Illinois state legislature, with next to no record of political accomplishment. He may be elected mainly because, in Colin Powell's word, he is thought to be "transformational." One may hope so.
By not bothering to look very deeply at the details beneath either candidate's governing proposals, the media have created a lot of downtime to take free kicks at Gov. Palin.
... If American politics is at low ebb, it is because so many of its observers enjoy working in its fetid backwash.
The primary discomfort with Gov. Palin is the notion that she doesn't have sufficient experience to be president, that Sen. McCain should have picked a Washington hand seasoned in the ways of the world. Such as? Here's an opinion poll question:
If as Joe Biden suggests the U.S. is likely to be tested by a foreign enemy next year, who of the following would you rather have dealing with it in the Oval Office: Nancy (of Damascus) Pelosi, Harry Reid, John Edwards, Joe (the U.S. drove Hezbollah out of Lebanon) Biden, Mike Huckabee, Geraldine Ferraro, Tom DeLay, Jimmy Carter or Sarah Palin?
My pick? Gov. Palin, surely the most grounded, common-sense person on that list of prime-time politicians.
Worth the full read. What has us concerned about an Obama presidency? [Pause.] Well, a good many things, but foremost is putting Joe Biden anywhere near the presidency. No joke. He's an idiot.
Bonus video. Why doesn't Sarah Palin get more play?
THANKS FOR THE HEADS UP, JOE!
Yipes! 3:00AM Obama Drama!