Thursday, December 31, 2009

Person of the Year for 2009

Time Rag has it all wrong, as usual, giving the Person of the Year award to--well, it's irrelevant who they gave it to--"a bald man with a gray beard and tired eyes." Whatever. The Person of the Year for 2009, as even Time Rag ought to know, is every citizen activist who attended the Tea Party rallies!

Who had the most impact on the events of 2009? Pretty obvious, it seems to me. Here's what Ed Morrissey wrote at HotAir: No one had a greater, obvious, and unexpected impact on the world than the perhaps-millions of people who suddenly rediscovered citizen activism and accountability from elected officials. Not only did they turn out for barely-organized protests around the country in April and July, they showed up at rallies at ad-hoc events, and they flooded town-hall meetings. Their advent frightened the powerful so much that some refused to show their faces in public in a season when fund-raising and handshaking are as traditional as pennant races in baseball.act on the events of 2009.

My son and I and went to as many Tea Party rallies in and near St. Louis as we could (I think my son--Army Infantry, two tours in Iraq--went along with me to keep me out of trouble--heh. Bless his heart). My husband joined us when he could. These events were an eye-opening experience. We met some great people, and we kept running into some of them rally after rally. The St. Louis Tea Parties were well-organized, and we owe that to a lot of hard work from people like Bill Hennessey and Dana Loesch, and a lot of other people who worked as hard and who were not as visible.

This is from the St. Louis Tea Party website: Mark Steyn said it all: While Euro-weenies were marching in the streets begging their socialist governments to take over more of their lives, the American Tea Party movement grabbed our Gadsden flags and told our government, “Get the hell out of my way.”

In 2010, we finish what we started.

In 2010, we plant the Gadsden Flag in the U.S. Capitol!

In 2010, find a Tea Party in your area and join us, you won't be sorry! "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."--Edmund Burke.

Happy New Year, everyone!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Obama Hawaiian Vacation Countdown

Wednesday, Dec. 30: Day 7 at the Winter White House

He's really spending two weeks there? Two weeks? Personally, I think it would be better for the country if he spent all of his time there. He could just move the White House to the Big Island permanently. Who cares?

Kailua Beach, where the Obamas are staying has, of course, been closed down. Some people mind, some people don't. This is from Row 2, Seat 4, Fox News' View of the White House. The residents of Kailua are split on whether or not they are happy President Obama and his family are vacationing in their area of Honolulu. Some people are excited the President has stopped by but others would prefer to have their beach back to themselves.

Don Mitchell who has lived on the island for over 20 years decided his front lawn could be used for some news organizations to park closely to his house, but some are not as welcome. Check out the cost for Fox News! ["Free"--way to go, Don!]

Kailua Beach--the lamestream press is actually calling this "the Winter White House." The 7,000-sq-ft house has a "crown jewel," the master bedroom, with it's "breathtaking view" of Kailua Beach, which has been ranked the island's best, a favorite of Hawaiian royalty. And the President has a personal connection to this stretch of sand. Oh. Gag. Me. [Maybe this will be Obama's full time home in his next job, when he becomes King of the World.]

Thank goodness the crown jewel master suite is just steps from the beach, since America's fashion diva, Lady Michelle, seems to have forgotten her belt back in the room. h/t to (who else) Michelle's Mirror's Blog for the photo.

Yunji also tells us that the President's Christmas getaway is on the market, and one realtor says the President has expressed some interest in buying it, but no final word on an offer. He’ll have to sell just a few more books. Oh surely not. I'm sure his Chicago cronies could get him one sweet deal on the property--somehow.

Update: For a little perspective, here's a photo of Richard Nixon's Florida Winter White House.

And Harry Truman's Winter White House, since he was a Democrat, was a little more up-scale; like Nixon's, his was also in Florida. It was later used by Eisenhower who probably liked it because it had all the upscale class of an Army officers' barracks.

Monday, December 28, 2009

He Doesn't Get It: Obama Is Slipping, and Not Only in the Polls (added: Damage Control of the "Christmas Incident")

Does he get it? This is Ed Lasky at the American Thinker: "Obama's Image: What a Difference a Year Makes."

Paraphrasing Winston Churchill: Barack Obama is no longer a riddle wrapped inside a mystery inside an enigma . . . . Now he's a "cynic wrapped in a hypocrite inside a bully." Doh!

Read Lasky's article--excellent.

The Damage Control of the "Christmas Incident" Continues

Obama can't seem to get this right. The Napolitano walkback wasn't enough. Now he's come out again (and again in suitcoat without a tie, which clearly says, "I'M ON VACATION, DAMMIT!"

Once more, with feeling. Actually, this is one of the most flaccid, passionless speaking displays from Our Greatest Orator evah, except that he shows a definite undercurrent of irritation, as if he's pissed to have to come out again and tell all these morons that they need to just accept the party line on terrorism and STFU and let him get back to the beach.

Ouch--look at the set of his mouth. And is it just me, or does The Won look pale (heh), pissed, and exhausted in this photo? Is someone deliberately "lightening" these photos? Sometimes he looks quite black, sometimes he looks gray, and sometimes, like here, he looks pasty white. He sure doesn't look like a guy who's on a two-week Hawaiian beach vacation. Maybe there's a reason why Candidate Obama's medical records were a state secret. Hey, BO, back off a little on the gym workouts. You also look like you could use a burger. Just sayin'.

Here's a transcription of Obama's second whack at spin-doctoring the attempted blowup of jetliner over American soil. Yesterday [which was Monday--the attack was Friday, which is three days, Bro] I updated the American people on the immediate steps we took [his patented up-inflection on took and pissed off half-sigh], the increased screening and security of air travel [increased security--are you joking, BO? And the increased screening--nobody gets up out of their seat for the last hour of the flight--as if the last hour of the flight is the only time a terrorist could set of a bomb?] to keep our country safe in the wake of the attempted terrorist attack on Christmas Day, and I announced two reviewssss, a review of our terrorist watch list system [this is Janet Napolitano's job, but evidently she thought Bush's system was fine since she's been in her job for eleven months without doing anything] and a review of our air travel screening, so we can find out what went wrong, fix it, and prevent future attacks. [Easy, right?] Those reviews began on Sunday [well, I'm on still vacation, but you can bet your butt that Janet's vacation is finished] and are now underway. [Why didn't those reviews begin 11 months ago?] Earlier today, I issued the former [did he mean formal?] guidelines for those reviews, and directed the preliminary findings be provided to the White House by this Thursday. [Interesting that he says "to the White House" and not "to me".] It's essential that we diagnose the problems quickly, and deal with them immediately. [It's after the fact, BO. What's so "essential" about working on the problems now that wasn't essential months ago? Is this the first time it occurred to your administration that a terrorist could blow up a plane?] More comprehensive formal reviews and recommendations for improvement will be completed in the coming weeks, and I'm committed to working with Congress and Homeland Security communities [huh?] to take all necessary steps to protect the country.

So he had nothing new to say this second time around. It's not clear why he bothered, except that he evidently was feeling the heat for being too uninvolved in the business of the country and too overinvolved in his two-week Hawaiian vacation. The NYT, the Obama Paper of Record, wrote, The visual contrast of a president on vacation while there was anxiety about air travel also drew fire. Although aides issued statements describing conference calls with counterterrorism advisers, pictures of passengers enduring tougher airport screening were juxtaposed with reports of the president picnicking at the beach and playing sports. Which is maybe one reason most presidents in the past have stayed either at the White House or at Camp David for the Christmas holidays.

Then there was this from Jennifer Loven, President of the White House Correspondents' Association, and as HotAir's Allahpundit says, Good Lord, Barry if you've lost her. . . . here's what she wrote:

Until Monday, the president had not been heard from publicly since the Christmas Day scare. He was ordering stepped-up security measures and after-action reviews behind the scenes, but also enjoying his Hawaiian vacation with games of golf, basketball and tennis and trips to the beach.

He drew questions about his level of involvement by not getting his first briefing on the incident until two hours after it was all over - and then only for 15 minutes, when he departed for the gym.

Aides defended the low-key approach as purposeful, designed to not glorify the attempted attack with undue presidential attention and perhaps encourage other terrorists.

In the spirit of Saul Alinsky, whose playbook is under the pillow of every ObamaTeam member, we return to Alinsky's Rule # 5: Ridicule is man's most potent weapon.

Obama took three days to address the bombing of Northwest Flight 253. At American Thinker, William Tate gives us the Top Ten reasons why it took Obama three days to respond to the terror attempt:

Number 10: My teleprompter was on vacation this week.

Number 9: Polishing a Nobel Prize takes longer than you think.

Number 8: It was Bush's fault.

Number 7: The waves here in Hawaii are bitchen, dude.

Number 6: Janet Napolitano said the system worked great, even if I couldn't get email on my Blackberry for a while there.

Number 5: This sort of thing just ain't supposed to happen on my watch.

Number 4: It was Bush's fault.

Number 3: Axelrod never told me I'd have to work on the holidays.

Number 2: I was busy celebrating Festivus.

And the Number One excuse Obama can give for taking so long to respond to the attempted attack on Northwest Flight 253:

I was busy looking for my birth certificate.
Others at the America Thinker are calling Obama "the Bizarro President": All that matters to him is that he gets to use health-care to define his presidential legacy and the luxury to enjoy every single perk of the office as much as he can, 9-irons, expensive beef, and multi-million dollar vacation homes included. But much is at stake, and while this nation needs a real leader who is ready to commit to do anything necessary for its well-being, we instead got the Bizarro President, not The One.
Obama just doesn't seem to get it.

Update. Oh my, this is bad, even worse than I originally thought. Not only has Obama lost Jennifer Loven, he also seems to have lost that uber-Obama-slobberer, Maureen Dowd. Say it isn't so, Mo.

Here's Dowd's op-ed at the NYT: "As the Nation’s Pulse Races, Obama Can’t Seem to Find His."

Here are some exerpts:

If we can’t catch a Nigerian with a powerful explosive powder in his oddly feminine-looking underpants and a syringe full of acid, a man whose own father had alerted the U.S. Embassy in Nigeria, a traveler whose ticket was paid for in cash and who didn’t check bags, whose visa renewal had been denied by the British, who had studied Arabic in Al Qaeda sanctuary Yemen, whose name was on a counterterrorism watch list, who can we catch?

But in his [Barry Obama's] usual inspiring/listless cycle, he once more appeared chilly in his response to the chilling episode on Flight 253, issuing bulletins through his press secretary and hitting the links. At least you have to seem concerned. . . . Heck of a job, Barry. Ouch!

Update #2. The wheels are definitely coming off Obama's wagon. The New York Daily News' assessment of Obama's handling of the recent airline terrorist attempt says that he lacked urgency and decisive leadership. His initial Monday response (76 hours of empty space, that, unfortunately for ObamaTeam, was filled by the inane "the system worked" remarks of Janet Napolitano), says the NYDN, was "too long in coming, too cool in delivery and too removed from the extreme gravity of the plot"--not unlike his initial "shout-out" about the terrorist shooting at Fort Hood.

Continues the NYDN article: What the public was left with was a never-to-be-repeated case study in crisis mismanagement. It's time to get a grip, Mr. President. . . . Obama's description of Abdulmutallab as an "isolated extremist" was remarkable and disturbing. This radicalized young Nigerian is nothing of the sort. He operated, in fact, as an Al Qaeda-recruited, Al Qaeda-supplied, Al Qaeda-directed foot soldier - as, to put it directly, an enemy combatant, and not as the criminal "suspect" of Obama's description.

While the NYDN seems willing to give Obama a pass on "inherited" botched security screening procedures and "unwieldy" databases [you can't review procedures or fix a 500,000 name database in eleven months?--hell, the Empire State Building was built in eleven months--but I digress] the people at NYDN do hold Obama accountable for his own anti-terror appointees and policies--you mean Obama's appointments weren't Bush's fault, too--how can that be?  

Things the NYDN does hold Obama accountable for, although the list ought to be longer:
  • his costly and wrongheaded order to try key Guantanamo detainees in civilian courts, including Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, architect of 9/11, in Manhattan Federal.
  • his determination to release selected detainees into foreign hands and hope for the best [but don't forget--BUSH DID IT TOO]
  • Napolitano, who will never live down her declaration that "the system has worked really very, very smoothly over the course of the past several days." Or her previous clanger that the 9/11 hijackers had entered the U.S. through Canada. Or her euphemistic airbrushing of terrorism as a "man-caused" disaster.
Update #3. I was sure that it wouldn't be too long before we heard from Dick Cheney. George Bush won't speak out against Obama, but Cheney has no compunction against airing his opinions of ObamaTeam in public. He has an interesting take quoted in Politico on Obama's reasons for downplaying the airliner attack: that Obama "is trying to pretend that we are not at war. He seems to think if he has a low key response to an attempt to blow up an airliner and kill hundreds of people, we won’t be at war. He seems to think if he gives terrorists the rights of Americans, lets them lawyer up and reads them their Miranda rights, we won’t be at war. He seems to think if we bring the mastermind of 9/11 to New York, give him a lawyer and trial in civilian court, we won’t be at war. And why doesn't he want to admit that we're at war with terrorists? Because it doesn't fit with the view of the world he brought with him to the Oval Office. It doesn’t fit with what seems to be the goal of his presidency — social transformation — the restructuring of American society.”

Politico continues in the article, criticizing the "conservative" response to Obama's lame response to the air attack: As indicative of what they contend is Obama’s world view, conservatives passed around the recording of a statement Obama made on Nov. 21, 2007, while taking calls on New Hampshire Public Radio: “I truly believe that the day I’m inaugurated, that not only does the country look at itself differently, but the world looks at America differently. If I’m reaching out to the Muslim world, they understand that I’ve lived in a Muslim country and I may be a Christian, [an aside--what a neat little rhetorical sleight-of-hand: "I may be a Christian, but then again I may not be." Very clever. Honestly, I think the guy is a Muslim, but regardless--he's no Christian. But that's for another post.] but I also can understand their point of view. …The world will have confidence that I am listening to them, and that our future and our security is tied up with our ability to work with other countries in the world. That will ultimately make us safer. And that’s something that this administration has failed to understand.”

That's the end of Politico's article, so I'm not sure exactly where they were going with that last paragraph. It's not enough to "listen" to radical Islamicists; it's not enough to "reach out." Bush, as highly ridiculous and wrong-headed as the Leftists wanted to make every one of his policies, every statement that came out of his mouth--even so, he kept America safe after 9/11. We're a nervous country right now (have you heard about the "suspicious vehicle" that closed down Times' Square today?); Obama needs to cut short his vacation and come back to Washington--today. Go relax at Camp David if you need to, Pres, but you need to quit playing the entitled rich-boy beach bum and get back to working your day job.

Update #4. Great minds think alike (heh). Michelle Malkin, in a post from 28 December, asks "Why is Obama still in Hawaii?" Read her post here.

Ya sure gotta be glad that The Won is having such a great time on the Big Island.

Update #5. Not that he'll take the advice.

Who is Janet Napolitano and why does she still have a job?

"The system worked."** The Director of Homeland Security, Madam Secretary, made her rounds on all of the Sunday talk shows (except of course, Chris Wallace on Fox News), saying just about the dumbest things she could possibly say about the Christmas Day thwarted terrorist attack on Northwest Airways flight 253. She told Jake Tapper who was filling in for Stephanopoulos on ABC's This Week: "Everything happened that should have. Passengers reacted correctly, the crew reacted correctly." She also said, "The traveling public is safe." And this, We’ll let the FBI and the criminal justice system do their work."

**Please read the fine print on your airline ticket: "In case of terrorist bomb attack, passengers will be expected to put out fire with bare hands." That's how "the system" works in Janet Napolitano's world.

Hey Janet: Your system didn't work if a terrorist gets on a plane and detonates a bomb. And he's not a criminal, he's a terrorist. Just sayin'.

This is the same individual who, in her testimony to Congress as Homeland Security Secretary, refused to use the word "terroism" and referred instead to "man-caused disasters." Later she told Der Spiegel last March, "Perhaps that was only a nuance, but it demonstrates that we want to move away from the politics of fear toward a policy of being prepared for all risks that can occur." She went on to say, "Our policies will be guided by authoritative information. [We'll do this job "smarter" than anyone else ever has.] We also have assets at our disposal now that we did not have prior to 9/11. For example, we are much better able to keep track of travellers coming into the US than we were before." Really? Napolitano is also remembered for her threat assessment report in April about "disgruntled" military veterans being a right-wing extremist threat. She apologized for her statement, but why the apology for something she honestly believes about veterans?  Oh, and not to be forgotten is the her assertion that crossing our U.S. border illegally "isn't a crime, per se." Frankly, I've had about enough of this woman. Three strikes and you're out, Janet. And now it's four strikes, with her ridiculous assertion that air travel is safe because the system worked.

The Washington Times editorialized about her man-made disaster language: This is a ludicrous nuance that causes confusion; it is PC language that is almost meaningless, worse than saying salad dodger for an obese person or product relocation engineer for a trash hauler. The WT editorial opines that Madam Secretary seems "confused" about her responsibilities, and they're not the only ones to point this out. Jonah Goldberg, writing this Sunday at the National Review Online, writes that Napolitano has a habit of arguing that DHS is a first responder outfit. Goldberg continues his point: By her logic if the bomb had gone off, the system would have "worked" since it has done everything right.

This is a ludicrous woman. How did she get the top job at and why is she still there? One article about her describes her as "wonky and charismatic." Someone obviously had the wrong word and instead meant "wonkish." Wonky is something that's odd or doesn't work right; wonkish is someone complex, subtle, hard-working, studious, or detail-oriented. People often refer to AlGore as wonkish. But charismatically wonkish--wow. She's remembered by one judge, a former employer, as a "gregarious people person who happily excelled at detail-oriented paperwork." A description like that sounds like code for "she's not too bright"; however, she has a consistent lifelong record of success in school and employment. She's also, unlike most of Obama's appointees, not a tax cheat and not a communist.

Madam Secretary Janet Napolitano is a 52-year-old former governor of Arizona who is also a native New Yorker. Well, OK, she graduated high school from a school in Albuquerque, did her undergraduate work in California, and received her JD from UVA, so she's sort of a hybrid mixed bag--a geographical mutt, if you will. Here's something I remember hearing but had forgotten--she served as an attorney for Anita Hill when Hill testified against Clarence Thomas. She was appointed by President Bill Clinton as a U.S. attorney, and she was subsequently elected Arizona Attorney General. She won the 2002 Arizona gubernatorial election with 46% of the vote, defeating her Republican opponent who received 45% of the vote. [Republicans just have start winning those close elections!] She was named by Time Rag as one of the best governors in the U.S. [Well, that's a meaningless platitude, considering the source.] What did the people of Arizona think of her? She set a record for the total number of vetoes issued by an Arizona governor, giving her the title "Governor No" (JaNo?), and she was re-elected in 2006, so go figure. Way to go, Arizona. Then she was an early endorser of Barack Obama. So she backed the right horse, so to speak, and consequently ended up with a big federal job, head of Homeland Security.

So I'm looking around the internet, trying to figure out what Arizonans think of this woman, and I find a site that in early December speculated that Napolitano might return home to Arizona to run against John McCain for Senate in 2010. I found another article that says she "provided a new model for progressive politics in the West" in the way she was able to contain Republicans as governor. Reading through the article that extols her as a great progressive, her policies seem to be all over the map. She was for government health insurance in her state "for the children"; she was for an increased sales tax for infrastructure (the article says that her governing record is full of tit-for-tat deals); she enacted universal all-day kindergarten, although she conceded to Republicans about school vouchers (she doesn't like vouchers); as a governor, she wanted to impose a cap and trade system on Arizona; she's vetoed state funds for raids on illegal immigrants; and she's relentlessly pro-choice. The progressive label fits her, although she says she "resists" labels.

Conclusion: Janet Napolitano isn't a lightweight, and she shouldn't be underestimated. Why then does she  keep stepping in shit, making these unforced errors, in her capacity as Director of Homeland Security? If her remarks are analyzed from the standpoint that she is an otherwise reasonably intelligent and savvy politician making dumb remarks, then two things come to mind: 1) she's in the wrong job; and 2) she's used to being the smartest person in the room and as such her knee-jerk reaction is to make patronizing remarks to Jane and Joe Q. Public. Perhaps she's also using bad judgment, repeating Rahm Emanuel-generated talking points instead of using her own brain.

Don't look to her to be fired from her job as Homeland Security Director; do look for her to quit that post sometime in the near future to run for political office--IMHO.

Update. Oh jeeze, now the White House Monday morning quarterbacks are evidently making Janet walk back the stupid remarks she made on the Sunday shows. A blog called Charlie Foxtrot has the story: "Let the Furious Napolitano Spin Begin." Sunday Janet said, "The system worked." Monday morning on the Today Show, Janet said, "The comment is being taken out of context."

Matt Lauer: "You would then concede that the system that was supposed to prevent something like this from happening failed miserably."

Napolitano: (nodding) "It did." Then she asks, "What do we need to do, to change, perhaps, the rules that have been in place since 2006?" Code for IT'S BUSH'S FAULT! --"All of that under review right now."

Well, Janet, what the hell have you been doing since January 2009 when you were given the job?

Let's review, or, as my favorite blogger, Michelle's Mirror's Blog suggests: I offered an alternate solution that would eliminate the underwear screening that is bound to tick everyone else off: “How about you just don’t let Muslims from turd-world countries traveling to America on a one-way ticket, purchased with cash, without luggage, who are denied re-entry into the UK for suspicion of terrorist involvement, whose name is in an FBI terrorist database, whose father notified the U.S. embassy in Nigeria that his son might do something like this, and was last seem pacing about in the airport grabbing his privates to say good bye – how about you just don’t let them get on the damn airplane!”

To every reasonable question she was asked by Matt Lauer (and frankly, the tenor of those questions was a surprise to me--I must be missing something), her reply was the same: "That's my question too," and "We're looking into that." "Obviously we need to review those protocols," she said--the protocols used to determine who gets on the no-fly list, how the list gets "whittled down" (her phrase) from the larger watch list. I want to see this woman go in front of Congress and explain what she's been doing for the past eleven months that's been more important than reviewing "protocols" for how a terrorist does or doesn't get put on a no-fly list.

Napolitano: "What I would say is, our system did not work in this instance, no one is happy or satisfied with that, and extensive review is underway. . . . But at this point we feel. . . that air travel is safe as we work our way through this problem."

Yep, especially if you fly by private jet, like federal wonks at her level do. That's quite a walkback in just under 24 hours.

I think it's pretty clear that whatever political talents Janet Napolitano possesses, she is clearly either in over her head at Homeland Security or just simply in the wrong job. ABC's Brian Ross reports that Umar Abdulmutallab, the failed Christmas Day airline bomber, says “more like me” will be coming to the US: "We are carrying a bomb to the enemies of God."

Update #2. Sent to me by nobakindown, one of my frequent commenters:

Imagine if George W Bush Was Bodysurfing, posted by Laura Ingraham.

...when an airline terror plot almost succeeded in killing 300 inside the U.S. on Christmas Day. Imagine then if his Homeland Security Secretary, in a bizarrely self-congratulatory mode, said that "everything happened that should have" to thwart the attack. A man who never should have been allowed anywhere near the U.S. managed to hang on to a multiple entry visa and nearly carry out the worst attack in our nation since 9/11. This is a total outrage and isn't surprising given this administration's rebranding the war on terror "overseas contingency operations." As I have been saying all along, Team Obama is woefully unprepared to handle what our country is facing. Now their incompetence is not only hurting the free market, it is endangering the lives of the American people. Hmm...maybe Desiree Rogers will come out of hiding to save the Obama brand from yet another embarrassment.

P.S. Does anyone beside me have ZERO CONFIDENCE in taking an international flight to the U.S.?

P.S.S. Has anyone heard from BO? No? Really not? Wonder what's he's up to? Busy, I guess.

I guess he finally weighed in on the Christmas Day terrorist attack. Blah, blah--like, who cares? Says Dr. Zero (Doc 0) from HotAir on Twitter: Has there ever been a moment of crisis in which both America's citizens and enemies were less interested in what the President had to say? Probably not. Go play golf, Barry.

Some comments from HotAir people:

Good thing he didn't wear a tie; otherwise, I'd never known he is on vacation.

His attempt at a moustache gave him all the gravitas of a French Cabaret singer.

He looks pissed that his vacation was interrupted to me. And no, I could care less what he has to say.

Even without the tie he still has to look right then left then left then right then left then right…President Pong

A mai-tai on the podium would have made this more convincing.

BO: let me be perfectly clear, blahblahblah, i have sent a tersley worded letter, blahblahblah, bush-bush-bush, blahblahblah….zoned out… Hey B+ presidente, go back to working on your D- golf swing.

Didn’t he get a tie for Christmas that he could have worn? Oh wait…..does he celebrate Christmas?

Blame Bush--"Pathetic," Says Karl Rove

Sunday, December 27, 2009

"Ho-ho-ho": Barack and Lady Michelle Do Christmas

I was talking to someone just today who made the point, "Where have presidents in the past spent Christmas?" The Obamas are breaking the bank with their spendthrift vacations--the taxpayers' bank, that is. Is their lavish entitlement lifestyle just part of the deal--have presidents always spent taxpayer money this way? [h/t: image from Michelle's Mirror's Blog]

Michelle Obama told her BFF, Oprah, that the First Family will go to Hawaii for Christmas, "like we always do"--always defined as starting last year for the first time, since that's when the American taxpayer began footing the bill for them. From HillBuzz: The Obamas will burn through thousands of dollars a day renting three mansions side-by-side . . . dragging hundreds of staff members thousands of miles from their families at Christmas, all at massive taxpayer expense. There simply is no record of any other president spending as lavishly or pulling staff away from their families on the holidays as much as the current president and his “fashion icon” wife, especially not in a time when so many are suffering in a prolonged recession.

If you can stand it, here's some weird insane gushing from an Obama BFF, George Stephanopoulos. Not a critical word to be heard from the lamestream media. Imagine the outrage if a Republican president had done this during an economic downturn like the one we're experiencing now. The Obamas will be on the island for two weeks. The Christmas tree was delivered special delivery from the mainland. Are there more Mao ornaments in the personal family collection? Seriously, these people are wearing on my last nerve.

And P.S. When was the last time the media didn't cover the First Family attending Christmas church services? Are the Obama's "still looking"? Their excuse is that it's "too disruptive" for them to go to church anywhere. Since when was it disruptive for the POTUS to go to church? Every other POTUS has somehow managed to attend church--but Barack Obama is some special case. He's a special case, alright. Robot Gibbs, the White House press secretary, whose job it is to know the president's schedule--that's his one job, actually--said he "didn't know" what Obama's schedule would be when asked if the president would attend church on Christmas. Back in July, White House "spokespeople" were still putting out the fiction that the Obamas were continuing to look for a church "home." No one is bothering to say that anymore, perhaps because even these people realize it sounds too much like an embarrassing, obvious lie.

HillBuzz did the research about where the first families in the past have spent Christmas, and they came up with some revealing answers:

2008, Bush: Camp David

2007, Bush: Camp David, then his ranch at Crawford, Texas

2006, Bush: Camp David

2005, Bush: Camp David

2004, Bush: Camp David

2003: Bush, Camp David

2002: Bush, Camp David

2001: Bush, Camp David

2000: Clintons, White House

1999: Clintons, White House

1998: Clintons, White House, then Hilton Head for Renaissance Weekend

1997: Clintons, Sarajevo, with the troops

1996: Clintons, White House

1993: Clintons, Hilton Head, S.C. (borrowed from a friend)

1992: Bush, Camp David

1991: Bush, Camp David

1990: Bush, Camp David

1989: Bush, Camp David

1988: Reagan, White House

1987: Reagan, White House

1986: Reagan, White House

1985: Reagan, White House

1984: Reagan, White House

1983: Reagan, White House

1982: Reagan, White House

1981: Reagan, White House

1980: Carter, Plains, Georgia

1979: Carter, Camp David

1978: Carter, Plains, Georgia

1977: Carter, Plains, Georgia

1976: Ford, Vail, Colorado

1975: Ford, Vail, Colorado

1974: Ford, Vail, Colorado

1972: Nixon, White House

1971: Nixon, White House

1970: Nixon, White House

1969: Nixon, White House

1968: Johnson, White House

1967: Johnson, White House

1966: Johnson, Texas--his ranch

1965: Johnson, Texas--his ranch

1964: Johnson, Texas--his ranch

1963: Johnson, Texas--his ranch

1962: Kennedy, Hyannis Port, MA (family compound

1961: Kennedy, Hyannis Port, MA (family compound

1960: Eisenhower: White House

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Remembering When. . . Reagan's First Christmas Address to the Nation, 1981

h/t to Joshuapundit, who notes Reagan's concrete support for the freedom of the Polish people; note how the entire speech is full of phrases like "we" and "us" and "Americans"; note Reagan's humility. What a breath of fresh air.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Harry's Reid's Gift to America:
ObamaCare Passes the Senate with 60 Votes

Our government is broken; the procedure by which the health bill was passed in the Senate is almost as disturbing as the bill itself. The vote at 7:00 a.m. today was 60 to 39. No Republicans voted for the bill, so at least the Dems can't use one Republican vote for the bill to call this crap "bipartisan."

My friend at HotAir, Ed Morrissey, says it well: [Let's] call this what it was. Harry Reid bribed members of his caucus to support the Democrats’ highest priority domestic agenda item. Why? Because it was so radical that not even all of the Democrats could support it until he started using taxpayer money to buy their votes. That’s not “deftness,” it’s crude corruption of the kind that Reid and the Democrats ran against in 2006 and 2008.

The cynical Democrat plan all along has been to pass anything--and then rewrite it later when the spotlight is off. So not only do we not know what's in this bill, but what's in the bill doesn't even matter--because this thing will be amended, and they won't even have to work in the dead of night to do it.

Karl Rove says that the way Harry Reid reached unanimity in his caucus could hurt Democrats more than they realize. Rove expressed this view in yesterday's WSJ: "The Real Price of the Senate Health Bill." As he says, there are problems with getting short-term benefits for states (like Ben Nelson did for Nebraska) in exchange for long-term costs for the nation. Rove has a whole list of special deals that Reid and his cronies made to get this bill passed. Check out his article.

According to Rove, here's what the nation gets for Harry Reid's bought Democrat votes: Taxes start going up now, Medicare cuts begin after next fall's election, and spending for subsidies commences in five years. The price tag is not the first decade's announced $871 billion cost: It is $2.4 trillion. That's the cost of the tax credits in insurance exchanges, and the additional Medicaid costs the reform generates, over the first 10 years it's fully up and running, according to Congressional Budget Office numbers compiled by Republicans on the Senate Finance Committee.

Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK), who is also a medical doctor, wrote a good piece in the Dec. 24 Real Clear Politics: "Voting Against Government-Run Health Care." Coburn says that if the bill becomes law, he will do everything in his power to work toward its repeal. Here are some exerpts.

This Congress will be remembered for its arrogance, corruption and stupidity. . . . This bill will ration care, cut Medicare, increase premiums, fund abortion and bury our children in debt.

This process was not compromise. This process was corruption. This bill passed because votes were bought and sold using the issue of abortion as a bargaining chip.

The experience of government-run health care in the United States and around the world shows that access to a government program is not access to health care. Forty percent of doctors restrict access to Medicaid patients. Medicare already rations care and denies medical claims at twice the rate of private insurers.

The backers of the Reid bill, in many cases, have been unwilling argue for what they believe in - a single-payer health care system controlled by Washington. Their hide the ball strategy led them to rush this process and ram the bill through on the eve of the most important Christian holiday when they hoped the American people wouldn't be watching.

The clear will of the public was not only ignored, but concerned citizens were personally attacked by politicians in power. The American people were derided as an angry mob, and were called evil-doers and unpatriotic by the leaders of the House and Senate.

I would contend this bill is Exhibit A in the American people's case against Washington. Soon enough, the American people will have the opportunity to ration the terms of the elected officials in Washington who sought to impose their will on the public.

Michelle Malkin is calling ObamaCare the "tipping point in the culture of corruption." [By the way, if you've never read The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell, you should ask Santa to put one in your stocking. Excellent read.] Courtesy of HotAir, here are two interviews with Malkin, one by Mark Steyn  and then another one of Malkin being interviewed on Fox & Friends. Mark Steyn says that so far, seven attorney generals of seven states are looking into the legality of the Cash for Cloture to senators in Nebraska, Louisiana, and Connecticut, among others.

An article written by James Rosen has more information about state prosecutors mounting a legal challenge to the health care bill. Some are saying that  the exemption, just one example, of Nebraska was done in a way that violates the Constitution because it's a tax on 49 other states that's being levied, with the other 49 states paying Nebraska's share. Attorneys general in South Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Utah are considering a lawsuit, bringing to ten the number of prosecutors joining the initiative. The states would not have legal standing to file suit until after the health-care bill gained final passage and was signed into law by President Obama.

And P.S. If you haven't read Malkin's book, Culture of Corruption, that's another good read. It's an excellent reference book for who's-who in the Obama administration. Malkin's research in this book is impressive.

Reid is seeking his fifth consecutive six-year term in 2010. His poll numbers with Nevada voters are at 38% favorable--anything under 50% indicates an incumbent who is in trouble. Nine Republican candidates are lining up to challenge Reid for his seat. The most viable in November were businesswoman and former GOP official Sue Lowden, attorney and businessman Danny Tarkanian, and former Nevada assemblywoman Sharron Angle. This is a seat the Republicans must win. Payback is hell, Harry. Unfortunately there's nothing we can do to this assclown that can approach the damage he's done to this country.

Sen. Chuck E. Schumer (D-NY) is also up for re-election in 2010. He's the Economic Committee chair, and here's his elitist, snotty take on this craptastik bill and the legislative process--that the American people don't care. What a cynical hack. I suppose it's too much to hope for that New Yorkers would vote him out, but his race is something to keep an eye on. A January 9, 2009 article in the New York Daily News asked the question, "Who in their right mind would oppose him?" I'm hoping that the political climate has changed a bit since that article ran.

Gateway Pundit is reporting on a national Joker outbreak. Evidently it began with our own esteemed Senator from Missouri, Claire McCaskill.

 These posters are sprouting up on signs in small towns all over the place. Right, Chuck--voters don't care. Michelle Malkin says this jokerizing trend is just the beginning of the end for these log rollers and bribe takers.

Obama’s Jokers: Senator Claire McCaskill, Senator Carl Levin, Senator Ben Nelson, Senator Al Franken, Senator Mary Landrieu, Senator Dick Durbin

Added: Another Obama wonk beclowned: Janet Napolitano

And of course, there's the Head Joker himself.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

More breaking news from President Dither:
Guantanamo Now Won't Close Until 2011

Apparently the feds can't scrape together the money it would cost to buy the Illinois prison they were planning to use for the terrorist prisoners at Guantanamo. Or at least that's how the NYT is reporting the story. Although it seems like the federal government finding $150 million to buy the Illinois prison would be something on the equivalent of me finding a quarter in my couch.

According to the White House, then, $150 million is money that can't be found to "restore the standards of due process and the core constitutional values that have made this country great." My God, do people remember what a huge moral issue he made of this during the campaign? Closing Gitmo was going to return America to the "moral high ground." It was going to make the entire planet love us again. Recall that he pledged to close the facility in the first 100 days of his presidency.

So OK, perhaps it isn't only the money, as the NYT reports--which may be why the NYT has the story, so they can spin it the way the White House wants it spun. Someone at the Washington Independent says that support was lost from Democrats when Obama recently announced that the Illinois facility might also be used to continue to hold terror suspects indefinitely without charge or trial. So then what's the incentive for supporting the move from Gitmo? What was it anyway--the logic always escaped me.

It's looking more likely all the time that the very first executive order that Obama signed, on his first day in office, may never come about. “There are at least two pieces of legislation that are going to have to go through this Congress before those prisoners can come here, said the Minority Leader of the House, Rep John Boehner (R-Ohio). "And I wouldn’t want to bet on when those two pieces of legislation will pass, if ever."

So far, I can't find where a whole lot of people are writing about this. You can bet, though that the Leftist wing-nuts are gonna go bananas when word gets out.

Crap, Mr. President, maybe this job is harder than it looks? Just sayin'.

I think he needs ANOTHER HAWAIIAN VACATION. Lady Michelle told her BFF Oprah that the family will vacation at Hawaii at Christmas "like we do every year"--yes, the long-standing family tradition that started in--2008. Oh no, please don't tell me we're going to be beset by more man-boob pics of Obama on the beach!

I found this next photo on Michelle Obama's Mirror's Blog, one of my favorite blogs, and I just had to post it somewhere, so I'll put it here.

Proof positive that Barack Obama has never done a real day's work in his life. Have you ever seen anyone who looks more awkward than he does when he's trying to "do normal"--bowling, bicyclying, and now digging. What were they thinking when they posed him with that pick axe? Plus the fey never-used white leather gloves? He needed gloves to take two whacks with that axe for the camera? Somebody ought to tell him to put his back into it, not his butt. This is even worse than when President Calvin Coolidge dressed up in an Indian headdress.

In a word, Obama is a sissy, and I don't like having a metrosexual sissy for a president.

Obama could learn a lot from these guys, and I don't just mean how to dig a hole.

Obama Plans to Dither--on Health Care?

Coming from Obama, this has got to be some pretty bad news, especially for Senators, who have worked weekends and insane around-the-clock hours so that Harry Reid could get his vote on health care in the can by Christmas Eve.

Politico is reporting this morning that the White House "anticipates health care talks to slip into February"--past his State of the Union address. Really? I thought the whole point of Harry Reid holding the Senate hostage for the past few weeks was so this health crap bill could be voted on in time for Obama to take credit for passing the bill when he speaks to the country in January. The State of the Union address is typically delivered on the last Tuesday in January, although that is by tradition, not by law. So maybe the address will be held up as well. That's fine with me--how about some time next summer?

Instead of finishing the health bill, HotAir is reporting that Obama plans a "very hard pivot" to a new jobs bill. Is anyone else wondering if our president is suffering from a serious case of ADD?

The reason for the anticipated delay, Politico is also reporting, may be that Nancy Pelosi and the House are going to make more trouble than previously thought about negotiating the differences between the Senate and the House health bill. When it comes to theater of the absurd, Nancy Pelosi is front and center--so the idea that she might make trouble on these health care negotiations can come as no serious surprise to anyone.

Hot Air's Ed Morrissey writes: The other term for “hard pivot” is “dithering.” The more Obama dithers, the less likely ObamaCare becomes.

If that's optimism that the bill won't pass coming from Morrissey, I can't say that I share it. The health bill sure seems like a done deal to me. Curiously, however, some pundits even at this late date seem to be hold out some hope that the bill won't get to Obama's desk. Bill Kristol at the Weekly Standard wrote this morning, "It Could Still Go Down." I don't think so, but "it ain't over till it's over," so maybe there's still a slim hope that this health care bomb could blow up in our legislators' faces.
"Work George Washington would have approved of"
--Victory or Death

I need something positive for a change. I don't know if Newt is considering a run for political office--or if not, why not. Is there something so terrible in his past that keeps him from becoming--a politician? I don't know, and I don't really care. It does seem like talk about Newt running flips the Leftists into crazy even faster than Sarah Palin, so he must be doing something right. Whatever, it's just good to hear some positive ideas instead of the constant carping about how awful things are.

The Restoration Weekend took place November 19-21, 2009. Newt Gingrich was a keynote speaker. His five-part speech is here.

Here are some quotes from Part 2 of the video.

The message I want to bring to you today is, this is a moment to quit worrying about them. We know who they are, we know how bad they are, we know how much damage they would like to do. This is the moment to figure out what the replacement is. And I want to argue that the purpose of 2010 and 2012 should be very straightforward: that this should be the greatest replacement campaign, probably since Andrew Jackson in 1828. . . . And we should be very clear from day one. We're not interested in reforming the Left, we're not interested in compromising with the Left, we're not interested in understanding the Left, we are interested in replacing the Left.

Quotes from Part 3.

Three questions that will define America for a generation.
  1. Who are we?
  2. What does it take to compete successfully with China and India economically?
  3. What threatens us, and how do we keep America safe?
The difference between the Secular Socialist Left and the rest of us is so startling that when you get to this level of basic values, we are a 70 or 80 or 90 percent country, and they're somewhere between a nine and 15 percent minority. [And then he answers his three questions in Part 3.]

America has been, for 400 years, a country of a work ethic, a country which believed in savings, a country which believed in investing, and a country which, at its core, fundamentally repudiates the idea that some group of politicians ought to decide an appropriate level of income, and ought to decide how to take from one group to give to another for political purposes.

Do you believe we are better off to appease the Chinese and decay gracefully while the Chinese become the dominant power on the planet, or do you think we should roll up our sleeves, do what it takes, get our act together, and compete successfully so we remain the most prosperous and strongest country on the planet? That's a fundamental choice.

December 7, 1941--the Japanese attack us at Pearl Harbor; August, 1945--the Japanese surrender. Forty-four months. In three years and eight months, we mobilized 15,500,000 people in uniform, we built the B17, B24, B29, we build four cities and 29 facilities for the atomic bomb, we build a 2-ocean navy, we sweep across North Africa, Sicily, Italy, France, Luxembourg, Belgium, Holland, defeat Germany while simultaneously sweeping across the Pacific. Forty-four months. It recently took us 23 years to add a fifth runway to the Atlanta airport. . . . Eight years after 9/11 we have not rebuilt the World Trade Center. In World War II, we would have taken exactly the same blueprint, rebuilt exactly the same buildings, done it 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, put them back up in less than a year, to say to the planet: You can hit us, but you can't keep us down.

This system is broken, and you have to think about replacement, not reform.

Quotes from Part 4.

The country increasingly believes that the stimulus was just a waste of money and a politician payoff. . . . They're going to try to ram through another stimulus, because they don't know anything else. These are people of stunningly limited capacity. They get up every morning--they know the answer is "government," they just don't know what the question is yet.

Then he talks about a three-part economic plan at American Solutions.

You start with that. We're going to downsize government, just like all the businesses that have been downsizing, we're going to learn how to do it at the same level of intensity. We did it once before . . . we balanced the federal budget, four straight years, $405 billion dollars in debt paid off, while cutting taxes for the first time in 16 years. We know this can be done, it's a historic fact, it's not a theory.

The fact is, we're the best integrator of human talent on the planet, unless we're methodically screwing ourselves up--that's called government, by the way.

Here's the video, Part 5.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

"Like Dukakis without the administrative skill"

Updates below.

Well, I managed to stay away from the blog for 24 hours. I will try to keep my posts briefer during the holiday week, but when I find something that hits me, I'll post it here.

Obama's numbers continue to drop; yesterday's Rasmussen Daily Tracking Poll has him at -17. I'd love to see him drop to about -30. Passing this health care crap should help the downward trend.

Update on Rasmussen: Today Obama is -21, down from -17 yesterday. Fifty-three percent of men strongly disapprove of the job Obama is doing. He does better with women--39% of women strongly disapprove--why he does better with women, I can't imagine. Surely it's not because women actually like a weak man. Like I say--makes no sense to me. The worst part of the poll for Obama is the Independents--the idiots who put him into office in the first place. Today, 61% strongly disapprove of the job he's doing. Can we call it the Presidential Disapproval Index yet?

Interestingly, the Left is increasingly turning on Obama. Some are calling it "buyer's remorse." Right--who would have thought there would be a problem with electing a junior senator to POTUS? Freaking fools.

There was a scathing article about Obama and his leadership style that was posted on the Huffington Post a couple of days ago, written by Drew Weston: "Leadership Obama Style, and the Looming Losses in 2010: Pretty Speeches, Compromised Values, and the Quest for the Lowest Common Denominator."

The article is a reflection about Obama's dropping numbers and how those who voted for him are becoming demoralized. Weston says that three things are costing Obama his popularity with his base:
  • a laissez faire style of leadership that appears weak and removed to everyday Americans
  • a failure to articulate and defend any coherent ideological position on virtually anything
  • a widespread perception that he cares more about special interests like bank, credit card, oil and coal, and health and pharmaceutical companies than he does about the people they are shafting.
Weston burns Obama's leadership style. It's the job of the president to be in the fray. It's his job to lead us out of it, not to run from it. It's his job to make the tough decisions and draw lines in the sand. But Obama really doesn't seem to want to get involved in the contentious decisions. . . . He's like an amateur boxer who got a coupon for a half day of training with Angelo Dundee after being inspired by the tapes of Mohammed Ali. He got "float like a butterfly" in the morning but never made it to "sting like a bee." Why is it you people on the Left just can't get over the concept of "style" with this guy? I guess it's because that's all there is--just a thin veneer of style. Instead of looking for a leadership style, you should have been looking for anything in his biography that showed you this guy even once demonstrated leadership--on anything.

Secondly, Weston says, Obama has no vision, no message. No kidding? Abortion, gays, immigration, jobs--the guy has nothing. The problem with the president's strategic team is that they don't understand the difference between compromising on policy and compromising on core values. No, Weston, the biggest problem isn't with Obama's "team"--it's with Obama. He has no core values. Or did you somehow miss that when he was being so thoroughly vetted for POTUS? And it's pretty hard to have a message if you don't really, in your gut, believe in anything. This White House has no coherent message on anything. The message on health care reform changed even more frequently than the interest rates on credit cards last Spring, and turned a 70-30 winning issue into its current 30-50 status with the public. . . . To be honest, I don't know what the president believes on anything, and I'm not alone among American voters. No shit, Sherlock. And this is a surprise to you?

And third, says Weston, Obama shows a preference for the lowest common denominator. An example: Want health care reform? Let Congress work it out, and whatever comes out, call it a victory. Health care, energy, financial regulation--settle for half a loaf on all of it.

Weston seems to think that Obama's biggest success so far has been on the international stage. Right--try telling that to the COP15 conference. He was a big, big hit there. But wait, says Weston, he's spoken with "great eloquence" to Muslims around the world. Perfect.

Weston concludes, and who can argue any of it?: I don't honestly know what this president believes. But I believe if he doesn't figure it out soon, start enunciating it, and start fighting for it, he's not only going to give American families hungry for security a series of half-loaves where they could have had full ones, but he's going to set back the Democratic Party and the progressive movement by decades, because the average American is coming to believe that what they're seeing right now is "liberalism," and they don't like what they see. I don't, either. What's they're seeing is weakness, waffling, and wandering through the wilderness without an ideological compass. That's a recipe for going nowhere fast -- but getting there by November.

Update. When you have the Leftist rag, Time magazine, telling you it's time to worry about the polls, maybe it's time to worry.

According to the recent Battleground poll, just under two-thirds of Democrats say they are extremely likely to vote in upcoming elections, compared to 77% of Republicans and Independents. Oops, that might be a problem for you, Prez. They're calling it "the enthusiasm gap. Hahahaha. And in Time Rag, "just under two-thirds" probably means 25%. Here's an article about the Battleground poll in American Thinker: "The Battleground Poll and the Battle for America." The AT calls the Battleground poll "one of the few bipartisan polling organizations. The population sample isn't skewed either Right or Left, and the poll has proven "very accurate over many elections." AT reports that, in the same poll quoted in Time Rag, 63% of Americans describe themselves as "very" or "somewhat" conservative.

This also explains why Obama runs away from "labels" (all leftists do, and have for many years).

Time Rag continues: there are also signs that Obama is beginning to feel the taint of the long-standing anger against politics and politicians in general. The Wall Street Journal/NBC poll found in December that 61% of the country has only some confidence, or no confidence, in Obama having the right set of goals and priorities to be President. Ouch! That's the sort of thing that, only a few short months ago, would never have seen the light of day in the lamestream media.

Monday, December 21, 2009

We've been here before--sort of

Lyndon Baines Johnson was a Senator from Texas before he was Vice President and then President. When he had Harry Reid's position, Senate Majority Leader, he was one of the most effective leaders the Senate ever had, if "effective" means he could pass legislation. He was known for his in-your-face arm-twisting methods, and he got results--real bipartisan results, not just one vote from a whacko faux-Republican from Maine. One of the best books I think ever written about the Senate is Robert Caro's third volume of his Johnson biography, Master of the Senate.

I was reading a different book just last night, a biography of Katharine Graham, the owner of The Washington Post, by Carol Felsenthal. What I read about Johnson's passage of the Civil Rights Act made me realize that what's happening now in the Senate about health care is nothing new. What's different about the process now is that it's out in the open, mainly because of bloggers on the internet and also because of the 24-hour news cycle. Unfortunately, it would seem as if the tortured process and work-arounds that we're seeing today is pretty much business as usual.

This is from Felsenthal: There were some who were focused on making sure that Lyndon Johnson would be the Democrat candidate for President in 1960. And with that goal in mind, Johnson was pushed to make the Civil Rights Act of 1957 his cause. The bill had been passed by the House, and Johnson was advised that if he wanted the presidency he had to shed his segregationist image by piloting it through the Senate, where he was the majority leader. Johnson was in a tough position--squiring the bill would hurt him in Texas; killing it would hurt his national ambitions. So, following his political instincts and the advice of Phil Graham [Katharine Graham's husband and the owner of The Washington Post]--who bolstered his advice with some very helpful editorials in The Washington Post--Johnson decided to weaken the bill, but just enough to save his Texas constituency without fatally disillusioning his hoped-for national one. It was a brilliant piece of work. The version of the bill that Johnson pushed through the Senate had everything cut out of it except voting rights, and even there the enforcement provisions were enfeebled.

Sound familiar? "Pass anything"--and then later they will come around again and make the bill into anything they want it to be. This morning at 1:00 a.m., in the dead of night, Harry Reid passed cloture on his crap bill with a completely partisan vote, 60-40.

Seriously, this is taxation without representation. Everyone's taxes will go up because of this health crap bill--Every. One's. It will also turn out to be a job killer--just ask any small business owner how many new jobs he's going to be creating over the next year--or instead, how many people he will have to lay off.

This is my last post for awhile. I have my own work to do, and I need a break from the smell of this Washington swamp. I plan to keep reading about what's going on to keep myself informed, but I'm going to stop blogging for awhile--it's too time consuming and it feels like a waste of time at this point--although I reserve the right to change my mind even tomorrow if I want to, since for me writing is often the very best way to learn what I want to know about a subject.

It's clear that these assclowns in Washington are going to succeed in shoving whatever they want to down our collective throats, at least for the time being. We've been here before, but it seems much more dangerous this time. We could lose our country, literally, because Washington seems determined to spend until they break the bank. It's imperative that people keep informed about what's going on, but unfortunately, I'm afraid that many too many thinking adults aren't paying attention. When they wake up one morning and ask, "What happened to my country?" at that point it will be too late.

What's the quote?--"A government big enough to give you everything you want is strong enough to take everything you have." --Thomas Jefferson

I plan to stay informed, stay involved, and do what I can to help change the direction we're headed--off the precipice--as Obama recently said in one of his most memorable Freudian slips. I know there are a lot of people out there who are doing the same, and I only hope that more people--on both the right and the left--will join the cause.

Oh, and P.S. I'm not feeling defeated nor even feeling particularly pessimistic. We have the greatest country in the world, and the people who love this country will prevail. Also, I'm not nearly as calm as this post may sound. I'm INCENSED at what the Senate has done the past week, and I guess I'm just taking a step back to figure out how best to respond. Re-form the line, and fight on.