Saturday, 9 August 2008

Wake up America

Wake up America

Comedian Bernie Mac, Dead at 50

Posted: 09 Aug 2008 12:09 PM CDT

Actor and comedian Bernie Mac died at a Chicago area hospital from complications related to pneumonia. He was only 50 years old.

The comedian suffered from sarcoidosis, an inflammatory lung disease that produces tiny lumps of cells in the body's organs, but had said the condition went into remission in 2005. He recently was hospitalized and treated for pneumonia, which his publicist said was not related to the disease.


More at Fox News.

Just because he was funny as all get out, here is one of his clips, via Youtube (link is to more than one of his clips, enjoy them all.



RIP Bernie Mac.

The Saga Of The John Edwards Affair Continues As Sister of Mistress Asks For DNA Test

Posted: 09 Aug 2008 12:33 PM CDT

Following the National Enquirer's investigation into John Edwards has been quite an experience. Lies, media bias, denial and accusations were exposed like a badly written novel. It continues today with Hunter's family demanding DNA tests.
I have never followed a National Enquirer story until the Edward's saga and it was quite an eye opener for me. There were just so many details provided in the one story reported about Edwards being trapped and cornered in the Beverly Hilton hotel restroom, that I felt there were questions that needed to be answered.

I reported about the media's refusal to investigate, their emails to media bloggers "requesting" them to not cover the issue, John Edward's denials and calling the story "tabloid trash" while claiming it was untrue, Edward's supporters at Daily Kos banning their own writer for daring to mention it and a money trail showing that Edward's backers and friends were paying to have his mistress, Rielle Hunter, relocated.

Fox News, for all the criticisms leveled against them, did stand up and actually investigated and found what no other media outlet would even attempt to look for when they interviewed one of the security guards that helped escort Edwards from the restroom and kept reporters away from him.

Kudos to them for keeping their eye on the ball.

To my mother, may she rest in peace, I apologize for all the times I teased you mercilessly for picking up the Enquirer every week.

Yesterday John Edwards admitted that the affair with Rielle Hunter, which the National Enquirer reported about last October, was true, despite his denials to the contrary for all the months between then and now.

ABC News' Bob Woodruff conducted an interview with Edwards, which aired last night and the full transcript can be found here.

Both Edwards and his wife Elizabeth provided statements to the press, which I added as updates to yesterdays pieces. (Listed as previous related posts at the bottom of this post)

Today ABC News reports that the saga has not ended because during the interview Edwards admitted the affair, but denied that he was the father of Hunter's baby which was born in February of this year.

In Edward's statement, he did say "I am and have been willing to take any test necessary to establish the fact that I am not the father of any baby, and I am truly hopeful that a test will be done so this fact can be definitively established."

To that end, Hunter's her younger sister Melissa told ABC News that people should "stop bad-mouthing" her sister and she goes on to challenge Edwards to keep his pledge and have the DNA tests done.

In the first reaction from Hunter's family, her younger sister Melissa told ABC News that Edwards should immediately follow through on his pledge to take a paternity test.

"I would challenge him to do so," the sister said.

"Somebody must stand up and defend my sister," she said. "I wish that those involved would refrain from bad-mouthing my sister."


In his interview Edwards claims that he only met with Hunter at the Beverly Hilton hotel to try "to keep this from becoming public."

He also admitted that the latest meeting which the National Enquirer exposed was not the only contact he had with Hunter and that they had "other telephone" contacts.

He also admits that he had not told his wife of the meeting with Hunter prior to going to the hotel.

Hunter had been hired by John Edwards to produce Web documentaries for the Edwards campaign, at a cost of $114,000. Those were called "Plane Truths", video found here.

There are only two possibilities here, he either is or is not the father of Frances Quinn.

If he is not, the DNA tests would confirm it fast and put an end to this saga once and for all.

His wording, via ABC News, regarding the DNA test, was "I would welcome participating in a paternity test. I'm only one side of the test, but I'm happy to participate in one."

That suggests that he is willing to participate, but leaves open the question of whether Hunter will.

If he is, then people would wonder why he came clean about the affair but refused to acknowledge the baby.

The timing would explain that because if the baby is his, then that would mean, from the timing of the birth, that John Edwards had continued the affair, even after his wife was re-diagnosed with cancer.

For the sake of Edwards, his wife Elizabeth, his children and his loyal supporters and friends, Edwards should insist on the DNA test to put this saga to bed once and for all and let the chips fall where they may.

If he is not the father, and his willingness to take the test suggests he may not be, then he can, at least, prove that much of the National Enquirer story wrong.


Previous pieces:

John Edwards Video Speaking To Mistress, Rielle Hunter for 'Plane Truths'; Elizabeth Edwards' Statement Added

John Edwards Admits To Sexual Affair Reported By National Enquirer; Updated with Edwards' Statement and Reactions

National Enquirer Publishes Spy Photos of John Edwards and Alleged Love Child

Bloggasm, LA Times Blog Editor, National Enquirer and John Edwards

Fox Confirms Portion of National Enquirer Story About John Edwards Meeting Mistress

LA Times 'Asks' Their Bloggers To Not Report On National Enquirer's John Edwards Story:
Update- Fox Interviews Hotel Security, Verifies Enquirer Story

John Edwards Caught Meeting His Lover

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McCain and Obama's Statements On War Between Georgia and Russia

Posted: 09 Aug 2008 10:48 AM CDT

Commentary below statements.

John McCain's statement:

Today news reports indicate that Russian military forces crossed an internationally-recognized border into the sovereign territory of Georgia. Russia should immediately and unconditionally cease its military operations and withdraw all forces from sovereign Georgian territory. What is most critical now is to avoid further confrontation between Russian and Georgian military forces. The consequences for Euro-Atlantic stability and security are grave.

The government of Georgia has called for a cease-fire and for a resumption of direct talks on South Ossetia with international mediators. The U.S. should immediately convene an emergency session of the United Nations Security Council to call on Russia to reverse course. The US should immediately work with the EU and the OSCE to put diplomatic pressure on Russia to reverse this perilous course it has chosen. We should immediately call a meeting of the North Atlantic Council to assess Georgia's security and review measures NATO can take to contribute to stabilizing this very dangerous situation. Finally, the international community needs to establish a truly independent and neutral peacekeeping force in South Ossetia.


Barack Obama's statement:

I strongly condemn the outbreak of violence in Georgia, and urge an immediate end to armed conflict. Now is the time for Georgia and Russia to show restraint, and to avoid an escalation to full scale war. Georgia's territorial integrity must be respected. All sides should enter into direct talks on behalf of stability in Georgia, and the United States, the United Nations Security Council, and the international community should fully support a peaceful resolution to this crisis.


The NYT shows that 1,500 are dead already and the Washington Post has one called "Stopping Russia".

THE OUTBREAK of fighting between Russia and the former Soviet republic of Georgia was sudden but not surprising. Conflict has been brewing between Moscow and its tiny, pro-Western neighbor for months. The flashpoints are two breakaway Georgian provinces, Abkhazia and South Ossetia -- the latter being the scene of the latest fighting. The skirmishing and shelling around Georgian villages that prompted Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili to launch an offensive against the South Ossetian capital, Tskhinvali, may or may not have been a deliberate Russian provocation, to which Russia's tank and air assault was the inevitable follow-up.


How the international community handles this situation is critical and TigerHawk states the situation spectacularly:

Another is that Barack Obama took the same position as a European Union that is very worried that Russia will cut off its supplies of natural gas and the most politically weak president since Jimmy Carter's hostage year of 1980. Neither are in a position to do anything other than call for completely ineffectual international condemnation. John McCain understands, however, that the next president will have the difficult task of persuading Europe -- all over again -- that it should side with Pax Americana rather than be Finlandized by the resurgent Russian Federation. Winning the political argument inside Europe and the other states peripheral to Russia will require clear American leadership, precisely as it did in the 1940s and 1950s. Transnational progressive platitudes run the risk of losing the important argument over the security of Europe and the other weak powers on Russia's frontier. George W. Bush has given up out of political weaknesses and organizational exhaustion, Barack Obama is giving up out of transnational romanticism, and John McCain is signaling the world that the United States under his leadership will be a reliable ally.


The Politico is right, this was the "3am" moment, but their analysis is wrong, because you do not caution the victim to show restraint, you tell the aggressor to back the hell off.....as John McCain did.

Once again Obama proves without a doubt that he is too inexperienced to deal with a world crisis and would not be a reliable ally.

I would take it a step further to say that most people I have spoken to do not trust Russia and never have. Russia has also been one of the UN weak links in getting strong meaningful sanctions against Iran and has been directly responsible for watering them down to the point that they have been ineffective.

I cannot see Obama's statement giving those people very much encouragement that he can be trusted to handle a serious crisis that involves Russia.

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John Edwards Video Speaking To Mistress, Rielle Hunter for 'Plane Truths'; Elizabeth Edwards' Statement Added

Posted: 09 Aug 2008 11:44 AM CDT

[Update on top] Elizabeth Edwards' statement and video called "plane truths" of John Edwards, produced by his mistress, Rielle Hunter, found here.

Edwards finally admitted to the affair (story here) and now video is online of Edwards speaking to Rielle Hunter, his mistress, during his campaign and while they were having their affair.

Hat Tip Top of the Ticket for the video via LiveLeak (video shown below).

Hunter was hired in 2006 to make a series of behind-the-scenes campaign videos on Edwards for his ultimately unsuccessful run for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination. Those videos were exhibited on the Edwards website for a brief time last year.

Then, they disappeared.

However, The Ticket has obtained Chapter I of those videos called, in ironic hindsight, "Plane Truths."





Much more over at Top of the Ticket, go....read.

[Update] Elizabeth Edwards' statement, via DailyKos:

Our family has been through a lot. Some caused by nature, some caused by human weakness, and some – most recently – caused by the desire for sensationalism and profit without any regard for the human consequences. None of these has been easy. But we have stood with one another through them all. Although John believes he should stand alone and take the consequences of his action now, when the door closes behind him, he has his family waiting for him.

John made a terrible mistake in 2006. The fact that it is a mistake that many others have made before him did not make it any easier for me to hear when he told me what he had done. But he did tell me. And we began a long and painful process in 2006, a process oddly made somewhat easier with my diagnosis in March of 2007. This was our private matter, and I frankly wanted it to be private because as painful as it was I did not want to have to play it out on a public stage as well. Because of a recent string of hurtful and absurd lies in a tabloid publication, because of a picture falsely suggesting that John was spending time with a child it wrongly alleged he had fathered outside our marriage, our private matter could no longer be wholly private.

The pain of the long journey since 2006 was about to be renewed.

John has spoken in a long on-camera interview I hope you watch. Admitting one's mistakes is a hard thing for anyone to do, and I am proud of the courage John showed by his honesty in the face of shame. The toll on our family of news helicopters over our house and reporters in our driveway is yet unknown. But now the truth is out, and the repair work that began in 2006 will continue. I ask that the public, who expressed concern about the harm John's conduct has done to us, think also about the real harm that the present voyeurism does and give me and my family the privacy we need at this time.

[Update] Let us not forget John Edwards extreme hypocrisy.

Here is Edwards on Clinton on Feb. 12, 1999:

I think this President has shown a remarkable disrespect for his office, for the moral dimensions of leadership, for his friends, for his wife, for his precious daughter. It is breathtaking to me the level to which that disrespect has risen.

Perhaps a reason why he continues to deny the child?

Then go follow the money.

What a tool Edwards is...really!

Previous pieces:

John Edwards Admits To Sexual Affair Reported By National Enquirer; Updated with Edwards' Statement and Reactions

National Enquirer Publishes Spy Photos of John Edwards and Alleged Love Child
Bloggasm, LA Times Blog Editor, National Enquirer and John Edwards
Fox Confirms Portion of National Enquirer Story About John Edwards Meeting Mistress
LA Times 'Asks' Their Bloggers To Not Report On National Enquirer's John Edwards Story: Update- Fox Interviews Hotel Security, Verifies Enquirer Story
John Edwards Caught Meeting His Lover

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Court Reverses Itself, California Parents Can Homeschool Without Teaching Credentials

Posted: 08 Aug 2008 03:25 PM CDT

Hat Tip Malkin.

The Second District Court of Appeal in Los Angeles reversed it's Feb. 28, 2008 ruling saying that parents that homeschool their children must be credentialed.
There are an estimated 166,000 children in California that are taught at home by their parents and after the February ruling there was concern that students that were taught by parents that were not credentialed would be listed as truants.

Today the court reversed their prior ruling. (PDF here)

After hearing from an array of objectors that included state education officials and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, the court agreed to reconsider the case and issued a new ruling today that reached the opposite conclusion: State law allows home schooling, although children can be required to attend school if they're being abused or neglected at home.

Although the compulsory-education law hasn't changed since 1929, some alter laws "demonstrate an apparent acceptance by the Legislature that home-schooling is taking place in California, with home schools allowed as private schools," Justice H. Walter Croskey, author of the earlier ruling, wrote in today's 3-0 decision.


The California Homeschool Network explains this ruling, saying "Today's court ruling held that (1) California statutes permit home schooling as a species of private school education; and (2) the statutory permission to home school may constitutionally be overridden in order to protect the safety of a child who has been declared a dependent. Homeschooling, therefore, remains a legal educational option in California."

Many are sighing a breath of relief right now and others are celebrating this decision.

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John Edwards Admits To Sexual Affair Reported By National Enquirer; Updated with Edwards' Statement and Reactions

Posted: 08 Aug 2008 05:09 PM CDT

[Updates below] Edwards statement added.

After consistently denying the National Enquirers claims that he had an affair with Rielle Hunter, John Edwards finally admits that he did have an affair with Hunter and continues to deny he is the father of Hunter's baby.
Edwards admits he lied about the affair while he was running his presidential campaign after the National Enquirer first exposed the affair late last year.

Back in October of 2007, Edwards made his denials publicly, saying, "The story is false, it's completely untrue, it's ridiculous."

He repeated those denials just a couple of weeks ago when the National Enquirer reported about Edwards meeting with Hunter at the Beverly Hilton hotel.

Recently, the National Enquirer cornered Edwards at the Beverly Hilton hotel and this story once again entered the news stream although many major news organizations did not cover the National Enquirer claims.

ABC News has now announced that Edwards is admitting to his extra-marital affair and that he repeatedly lied about the affair on the presidential campaign trail.

Edwards today admitted the National Enquirer was correct when it reported he had visited Hunter at the Beverly Hills Hilton last month.


John Edwards does continue to deny being the father of Rielle Hunter's baby after the National Enquirer produced photos they allege is John Edwards holding the child, and says he does not love Hunter.

According to Edwards, he claims he knows he is not the father based on timing of the baby's birth on February 27, 2008, saying he ended his affair with Hunter too soon to be the father.

Edwards said the affair began during the campaign after she was hired. Hunter traveled with Edwards around the country and to Africa.

Edwards said his wife, Elizabeth, and others in his family became aware of the affair in 2006.


Yesterday it was reported that Democratic party members were insisting that John Edwards deal with this issue before they could decide his role in the Democratic National Convention saying he could lose his speaking spot if he did not do so.

[Update] Listening to a National Enquirer employee on television saying they stand by their assertion that he is the father and challenging Edwards to take a DNA test and promising to publish the results no matter what they are.

Charlotte Observer brings up a blast from the past.. Edwards regarding Clinton in 1999:

I think this President has shown a remarkable disrespect for his office, for the moral dimensions of leadership, for his friends, for his wife, for his precious daughter. It is breathtaking to me the level to which that disrespect has risen.
[Update] Edwards' statement:

In 2006, I made a serious error in judgment and conducted myself in a way that was disloyal to my family and to my core beliefs. I recognized my mistake and I told my wife that I had a liaison with another woman, and I asked for her forgiveness. Although I was honest in every painful detail with my family, I did not tell the public. When a supermarket tabloid told a version of the story, I used the fact that the story contained many falsities to deny it. But being 99% honest is no longer enough.

I was and am ashamed of my conduct and choices, and I had hoped that it would never become public. With my family, I took responsibility for my actions in 2006 and today I take full responsibility publicly. But that misconduct took place for a short period in 2006. It ended then. I am and have been willing to take any test necessary to establish the fact that I am not the father of any baby, and I am truly hopeful that a test will be done so this fact can be definitively established. I only know that the apparent father has said publicly that he is the father of the baby. I also have not been engaged in any activity of any description that requested, agreed to or supported payments of any kind to the woman or to the apparent father of the baby.

It is inadequate to say to the people who believed in me that I am sorry, as it is inadequate to say to the people who love me that I am sorry. In the course of several campaigns, I started to believe that I was special and became increasingly egocentric and narcissistic. If you want to beat me up - feel free. You cannot beat me up more than I have already beaten up myself. I have been stripped bare and will now work with everything I have to help my family and others who need my help.

I have given a complete interview on this matter and having done so, will have nothing more to say.


It is being reported on television that Edwards and his wife Elizabeth might be making a public statement, if and when he does, I will try to provide the video.

Reactions are starting to come out.

Former campaign manager David Bonior said in an e-mail statement, "I am disappointed and angry. Thousands of friends and supporters of Senator Edwards put their faith and confidence in him, and he has let them down. Young supporters who put their time and energy into his campaign with a newfound energy and idealism for politics have been betrayed by his actions. But the issues we cared about and fought for — poverty, worker justice, clean environment and health care for all — are issues worth continuing to fight."

It is being reported on television that Edwards and his wife Elizabeth might be making a public statement, if and when he does, I will try to provide the video.

Previous pieces:

National Enquirer Publishes Spy Photos of John Edwards and Alleged Love Child
Bloggasm, LA Times Blog Editor, National Enquirer and John Edwards
Fox Confirms Portion of National Enquirer Story About John Edwards Meeting Mistress
LA Times 'Asks' Their Bloggers To Not Report On National Enquirer's John Edwards Story: Update- Fox Interviews Hotel Security, Verifies Enquirer Story
John Edwards Caught Meeting His Lover

Mayor Calls For Frederal Probe After SWAT Kicked In Door Of Home And Shot Dogs

Posted: 08 Aug 2008 01:43 PM CDT

Mayor's press conference on YouTube here and below.



A Maryland Mayor is demanding a federal probe after SWAT raided his house and shot his dogs. Evidently drug smugglers are sending drugs to unsuspecting victims in order to smuggle them into the country.
Two men have been arrested, one of which is a FEDEx deliveryman who according to the plan, drops the drugs off, leaving a box on the doorstep and another man picks them up.

The FBI have opened up an investigation into a July 29, 2008 raid upon the a Maryland Mayor's house, Cheye Calvo, after SWAT burst in, without knocking, and shot the family dogs, killing them.

The Prince George's County Police Department, with the sheriff's special operations team assisting, had been investigating the drug smuggling operation and after arriving home from walking the family dogs, Chase and Payton, his mother-in-law told him that a package had arrived for his wife.

He was upstairs changing when he heard the commotion downstairs from the authorities kicking in the door and he was brought downstairs in boxer shorts, handcuffed and then was forced to the floor next to his mother-in-law, near the bodies of his dead dogs lying in their own blood.

Calvo asserts that when he asked to see the warrant for the raid, he was refused and according to the CNN report, Maryland does not offer "no-knock" warrants and the authorities did not knock before entering.

Calvo wants an independent investigation start because he claims the departments cannot be trusted to do an internal investigation.

While he was being held, Calvo said, he told police he is the town's mayor, but they didn't believe him.

Berwyn Heights has its own police force, he said, but Prince George's County police did not notify the municipal authorities of their interest in his home or the package.

"They didn't know my name. All they knew was my wife's name. They matched that to the registration of the car," Calvo said. "It was that lack of communication that really led to what has really been the most traumatic experience of our lives."

After the raid, arrests were made in the package interception scheme.

The incident has prompted the couple to call for a federal investigation because, they say, they don't believe police are capable of conducting an internal investigation.


Calvo's states, "They've said they've done nothing wrong. I didn't sign up for this fight, but I think what we have to do now is make changes to how Prince George's County police and Prince George's County sheriff's department operate."

The police, via spokeswoman Sharon Taylor, expressed sympathy for the animal's deaths, but stopped short of apologizing and stated "We've done these similar kinds of operations over and over again, to the tune of removing billions of dollars of drugs from the community and without people or animals being harmed. We don't want any of our operations to result in the injury or loss of anybody, and certainly not animals."


The police say they shot the dogs because they felt threatened.

According to the Washington Post story about this incident, Police Chief Melvin C. High said that Calvo and his wife were probably innocent victims of the conspiracy yet he defended the actions of the policemen who conducted the raid.

In a press conference, Calvo, surrounded by county elected leaders and friends, states "We have witnessed a frightening law enforcement culture in which the law is disregarded, the rights of innocent occupants are ignored and the rights of innocent animals mean nothing. A shadow was cast over our good names. We were harmed by the very people who took an oath to protect us."

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No comments:

Conflict: The Power of Propaganda trailer

If Mr. Carter had stuck to Habitat for Humanity instead of Inaccurate Boloney, we could admire him and I did. He has lost all credibility due to his ignorance of the truth in the Middle East. What a sad legacy to leave! Some have said that he has consumed too many bad peanuts and it has affected his brain making him nuttier in his old age.

Blacks Held Back - Dr. Walter E Williams

THE NEW GAME: POWER CLING !!!

Obama learned his lesson well


"Obama learned his lesson well. I am proud to see that my father's model for organizing is being applied successfully beyond local community organizing to affect the Democratic campaign in 2008. It is a fine tribute to Saul Alinsky as we approach his 100th birthday." --Letter from L. DAVID ALINSKY, son of Neo-Marxist Saul Alinsky


Hillary, Obama and the Cult of Alinsky: "True revolutionaries do not flaunt their radicalism, Alinsky taught. They cut their hair, put on suits and infiltrate the system from within. Alinsky viewed revolution as a slow, patient process. The trick was to penetrate existing institutions such as churches, unions and political parties....

"One Alinsky benefactor was Wall Street investment banker Eugene Meyer, who served as Chairman of the Federal Reserve from 1930 to 1933. Meyer and his wife Agnes co-owned The Washington Post. They used their newspaper to promote Alinsky....Her series, called 'The Orderly Revolution', made Alinsky famous....

"Alinsky’s crowning achievement was his recruitment of a young high school student named Hillary Rodham. She met Alinsky through a radical church group. Hillary wrote an analysis of Alinsky’s methods for her senior thesis at Wellesley College. ...

"Many leftists view Hillary as a sell-out because she claims to hold moderate views on some issues. However, Hillary is simply following Alinsky’s counsel to do and say whatever it takes to gain power.

"Barack Obama is also an Alinskyite.... Obama spent years teaching workshops on the Alinsky method. In 1985 he began a four-year stint as a community organizer in Chicago, working for an Alinskyite group called the Developing Communities Project.... Camouflage is key to Alinsky-style organizing. While trying to build coalitions of black churches in Chicago, Obama caught flak for not attending church himself. He became an instant churchgoer." [by Richard Poe, 11-27-07] See also Community Oriented Policing


Quote from Saul Alinsky's Book "Rules for Radicals"

In this book we are concerned with how to create mass organizations to seize power and give it to the people; to realize the democratic dream of equality, justice, peace.... "Better to die on your feet than to live on your knees.' This means revolution." p.3

"Radicals must be resilient, adaptable to shifting political circumstances, and sensitive enough to the process of action and reaction to avoid being trapped by their own tactics and forced to travel a road not of their choosing." p.6

"A Marxist begins with his prime truth that all evils are caused by the exploitation of the proletariat by the capitalists. From this he logically proceeds to the revolution to end capitalism, then into the third stage of reorganization into a new social order of the dictatorship of the proletariat, and finally the last stage -- the political paradise of communism." p.10

The one thing he did not learn is the passion of FREE people to be free! - Press4TRuth

Saul Alinsky - Mentor of Obama

WorldNetDaily

War on Gaza. Whoops!

What Obama DOES NOT Know Can Hurt Us


The Financial Post today carried the following article by Alex Epstein that pretty well sums up the problem with a president with NO economic or business experience.

Obama doesn’t get roots of crisis
Posted: April 07, 2009, 7:04 PM by NP Editor
By Alex Epstein

Barack Obama rightly stresses that we first must understand how today’s problems emerged. It is “only by understanding how we arrived at this moment that we’ll be able to lift ourselves out of this predicament.”
Unfortunately, Obama (along with most of the Washington establishment) has created only misunderstanding. In calling for a massive increase in government control over the economy, he has evaded the mountain of evidence implicating the government. For example, Obama’s core explanation of all the destructive behaviour leading up to today’s crisis is that the market was too free. But the market that led to today’s crisis was systematically manipulated by government.
Fact This decade saw drastic attempts by the government to control the housing and financial markets — via a Federal Reserve that cut interest rates to all-time lows and via a gigantic increase in Fannie Mae’s and Freddie Mac’s size and influence.
Fact Through these entities, the government sought to “stimulate the economy” and promote home ownership (sound familiar?) by artificially extending cheap credit to home-buyers.
Fact Most of the (very few) economists who actually predicted the financial crisis blame Fed policy or housing policy for inflating a bubble that was bound to collapse.
How does all this evidence factor into Obama’s understanding of “how we arrived at this moment”? It doesn’t. Not once, during the solemn 52 minutes and 5,902 words of his speech to Congress did he mention the Fed, Fannie or Freddie. Not once did he suggest that government manipulation of markets could have any possible role in the present crisis. He just went full steam ahead and called for more spending, more intervention and more government housing programs as the solution.
A genuine explanation of the financial crisis must take into account all the facts. What role did the Fed play? What about Fannie and Freddie? To be sure, some companies and CEOs seem to have made irrational business decisions. Was the primary cause “greed,” as so many claim — and what does this even mean? Or was the primary cause government intervention — like artificially low interest rates, which distorted economic decision-making and encouraged less competent and more reckless companies and CEOs while marginalizing and paralyzing the more competent ones?
Entertaining such questions would also mean considering the idea that the fundamental solution to our problems is to disentangle the government from the markets to prevent future manipulation. It would mean considering pro-free-market remedies such as letting banks foreclose, letting prices reach market levels, letting bad banks fail, dismantling Fannie and Freddie, ending bailout promises and getting rid of the Fed’s power to manipulate interest rates.
But it is not genuine understanding the administration seeks. For it, the wisdom and necessity of previous government intervention is self-evident; no matter the contrary evidence, the crisis can only have been caused by insufficient government intervention. Besides, the administration is too busy following Obama’s chief of staff’s dictum, “Never let a serious crisis go to waste,” by proposing a virtual takeover of not only financial markets but also the problem-riddled energy and health-care markets — which, they conveniently ignore, are also already among the most government-controlled in the economy.
While Obama has not sought a real explanation of today’s economic problems, the public should. Otherwise, we will simply swallow “solutions” that dogmatically assume the free market got us here — namely, Obama’s plans to swamp this country in an ocean of government debt, government controls and government make-work projects.
Alternative, free-market explanations for the crisis do exist — ones that consider the inconvenient facts Washington ignores — and everyone should seek to understand them. Those who do will likely end up telling our leaders to stop saying “Yes, we can” to each new proposal for expanding government power, and start saying “Yes, you can” to those who seek to exercise their right to produce and trade on a free market.
Financial Post
Alex Epstein is an analyst at the Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights.

Deciphering Obama in Cairo


Deciphering Obama in Cairo

Center for Security Policy | Jun 05, 2009
By Frank Gaffney, Jr.

By and large, President Obama's address yesterday in Cairo has been well received in both the so-called "Muslim world" and by other audiences. Nobody may be happier with it, though, than the Muslim Brotherhood - the global organization that seeks to impose authoritative Islam's theo-political-legal program known as "Shariah" through stealthy means where violence ones are not practicable. Egyptian Muslim Brothers were prominent among the guests in the audience at Cairo University and Brotherhood-associated organizations in America, like the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), have rapturously endorsed the speech.

The Brotherhood has ample reason for its delight. Accordingly, Americans who love freedom - whether or not they recognize the threat Shariah represents to it - have abundant cause for concern about "The Speech," and what it portends for U.S. policy and interests.

Right out of the box, Mr. Obama mischaracterized what is causing a "time of tension between the United States and Muslims around the world." He attributed the problem first and foremost to "violent extremists [who] have exploited these tensions in a small but potent minority of Muslims." The President never mentioned - not even once - a central reality: The minority in question, including the Muslim Brotherhood, subscribes to the authoritative writings, teachings, traditions and institutions of their faith, namely Shariah. It is the fact that their practice is thus grounded that makes them, whatever their numbers (the exact percentage is a matter of considerable debate), to use Mr. Obama euphemistic term, "potent."

Instead, the President's address characterized the problem as a "cycle of suspicion and discord," a turn of phrase redolent of the moral equivalence so evident in the Mideast peace process with it "cycle of violence." There was not one reference to terrorism, let alone Islamic terrorism. Indeed, any connection between the two is treated as evidence of some popular delusion. "The attacks of September 11, 2001 and the continued efforts of these extremists to engage in violence against civilians has led some in my country to view Islam as inevitably hostile not only to America and Western countries, but also to human rights. This has bred more fear and mistrust."

Then there was this uplifting, but ultimately meaningless, blather: "So long as our relationship is defined by our differences, we will empower those who sow hatred rather than peace, and who promote conflict rather than the cooperation that can help all of our people achieve justice and prosperity."

More often than not, the President portrayed Muslims as the Brotherhood always does: as victims of crimes perpetrated by the West against them - from colonialism to manipulation by Cold War superpowers to the menace of "modernity and globalization that led many Muslims to view the West as hostile to the traditions of Islam." Again, no mention of the hostility towards the infidel West ingrained in "the traditions of Islam." This fits with the meme of the Shariah-adherent, but not the facts.

Here's the irony: Even as President Obama professed his determination to "speak the truth," he perpetrated a fraud. He falsely portrayed what amounts to authoritative Islam, namely Shariah Islam, as something that is "not exclusive," that "overlaps" and "need not be in competition" with "America. Actually, Shariah is, by its very nature, a program that obliges its adherents to demand submission of all others, Muslims (especially secular and apostate ones) and non-Muslims, alike.

This exclusiveness (read, Islamic supremacism) applies most especially with respect to democratic nations like America, nations founded in the alternative and highly competitive belief that men, not God, should make laws. Ditto nations that stand in the way of the establishment of the Caliphate, the global theocracy that Shariah dictates must impose its medieval agenda worldwide. In practice, Shariah is the very antithesis of Mr. Obama's stated goal of "progress; tolerance and the dignity of all human beings." Its "justice" can only be considered by civilized societies to be a kind of codified barbarism.

At least as troubling are what amount to instances of presidential dawa, the Arabic term for Islamic proselytization. For example, Mr. Obama referred four times in his speech to "the Holy Koran." It seems unimaginable that he ever would ever use the adjective to describe the Bible or the Book of Mormon.

Then, the man now happy to call himself Barack Hussein Obama (in contrast to his attitude during the campaign) boasts of having "known Islam on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed." An interesting choice of words that, "first revealed." Not "established," "founded" or "invented." The President is, after all, a careful writer, so he must have deliberately eschewed verbs that reflect man's role, in favor of the theological version of events promoted by Islam. Thus, Mr. Obama has gone beyond the kind of "respectful language" he has pledged to use towards Islam. He is employing what amounts to code - bespeaking the kind of submissive attitude Islam demands of all, believers and non-believers alike.

Elsewhere in the speech, Mr. Obama actually declared that "I consider it part of my responsibility as President of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear." Note that, although he referred in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian-Arab conflict to "vile stereotypes" of Jews, he did not describe it as "part of his responsibility as President" to counter anti-Semitic representations.

Unremarked was the fact that such incitement is daily fare served up by the state media controlled by his host in Egypt, President Hosni Mubarak, by the Palestinian Authority's Mahmoud Abbas and by every other despot in the region with whom Mr. Obama seeks to "engage." Worse yet, no mention was made of the fact that some of those "vile stereotypes" - notably, that Jews are "descendants of apes and pigs" - are to be found in "the Holy Koran," itself.

Perhaps the most stunning bit of dawa of all was a phrase the President employed that, on its face, denies the divinity of Jesus - something surprising from a self-described committed Christian. In connection with his discussion of the "situation between Israelis, Palestinians and Arabs," Mr. Obama said, "...When Jerusalem is a secure and lasting home for Jews and Christians and Muslims, and a place for all of the children of Abraham to mingle peacefully together as in the story of Isra, when Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed (peace be upon them) joined in prayer."

Muslims use the term "peace be upon them" to ask for blessings on deceased holy men. In other words, its use construes all three in the way Islam does - as dead prophets - a treatment wholly at odds with the teachings of Christianity which, of course, holds Jesus as the immortal Son of God.

If Mr. Obama were genuinely ignorant about Islam, such a statement might be ascribed to nothing more than a sop to "interfaith dialogue." For a man who now pridefully boasts of his intimate familiarity with Muslims and their faith, it raises troubling questions about his own religious beliefs. At the very least, it conveys a strongly discordant message to "the Muslim world" about a fundamental tenet of the faith he professes.

Finally, what are we to make of Mr. Obama statements about America and Islam? Since he took office, the President has engaged repeatedly in the sort of hyping of Muslims and their role in the United States that is standard Muslim Brotherhood fare. In his inaugural address, he described our nation as one of "Christians, Muslims and Jews." Shortly thereafter, he further reversed the demographic ordering of these populations by size in his first broadcast interview (with the Saudi-owned al-Arabiya network), calling America a country of "Muslims, Christians and Jews."

Yesterday in Cairo, the President declared that "Islam has always been a part of America's story." Now, to be sure, Muslims, like peoples of other faiths, have made contributions to U.S. history. But they have generally done so in the same way others have, namely as Americans - not as some separate community, but as part of the "E pluribus unum" (out of many, one) that Mr. Obama properly extolled in The Speech.

Unfortunately, a pattern is being established whereby President Obama routinely exaggerates the Muslim character of America. For example, at Cairo University, he claimed there are nearly seven million Muslims in this country - a falsehood promoted by the Muslim Brotherhood and its friends - when the actual number is well-less than half that. Shortly before The Speech, in an interview with a French network, Mr. Obama said, "If you actually took the number of Muslims Americans, we'd be one of the largest Muslim countries in the world."

Incredible as these statements may seem, even more astounding is their implication for those who adhere to Shariah. The President's remarks about America as a Muslim nation would give rise to its treatment by them as part of dar al-Islam, the world of Islam, as opposed to dar al-harb (i.e., the non-Muslim world).

Were the former to be the case, Shariah requires faithful Muslims to rid the United States of infidel control or occupation. And we know from last year's successful prosecution of the Holy Land Foundation - a so-called "charity" engaged in money-laundering for one of the Muslim Brotherhood's terrorist operations, Hamas - that such an agenda tracks precisely with the Brothers' mission here: "To destroy Western civilization from within America, by its own miserable hand."

This reality makes one of Mr. Obama's promises in Cairo especially chilling. Near the end of his address, the President expressed concern that religious freedom in the United States was being impinged by "rules on charitable giving [that] have made it harder for Muslims to fulfill their religious obligation." He went on to pledge: "That is why I am committed to working with American Muslims to ensure that they can fulfill zakat."

Let us be clear: Muslim charities have run into difficulty with "the rules" because they have been convicted in federal court of using the Muslim obligation to perform zakat (tithing to charity) to funnel money to terrorists. At this writing, it is unclear precisely what Mr. Obama has in mind with respect to this commitment to "ensure [Muslims] can fulfill zakat." But you can bet that the Brotherhood will try to translate it into the release of their imprisoned operatives and new latitude to raise money for their Shariah-promoting, and therefore seditious, activities in America.

I could go on, but you get the point. The Speech contained a number of statements about the laudable qualities of America, the need for freedom in the Muslim world, about women's rights and the desirability of peace. But its preponderant and much more important message was one that could have been crafted by the Muslim Brotherhood: America has a president who is, wittingly or not, advancing the Brotherhood's agenda of masking the true nature of Shariah and encouraging the West's submission to it.

Frank J. Gaffney, Jr. is President of the Center for Security Policy in Washington. An abbreviated version of this article appeared in Newsmax, June 5, 2009.

OBAMA for CHANGE ??? A Stimulating Thought !!!

[As you will see below, even Jackie Mason doesn't think this is funny!] Rahm Emanuel's statement in November, "Never let a serious crisis go to waste. What I mean by that is it's an opportunity to do things you couldn't do before."

Well now we have the proof. I said it before Mr. Obama was elected. The ONLY change that Obama expects to bring to Washington is him in the white house!

Now we have the proof. This "STIMULUS" bill is anything BUT stimulating! Apparently hundreds of phone calls against the bill are coming into government offices. But the government of the people, by the people and for the people has now become the government OVER the people, right by the people and FOR the democratic party in government!

Didn't Mr. Obama say that he wanted to CHANGE the way Washington worked? Ha, well now we know how.

So Mr. Obama has brought CHANGE TO AMERICA... yes CHANGE AS TO WHO GETS THE PORK. - His soundbytes about there being NO PORK in the bill are absolute blatant lies.

The letters and calls to the congress were 100:1 AGAINST this package but that did not thwart the courageous congress from paying back all their supporters AGAINST the will of the people!

However it was that unofficial third party in the U.S. called the left-wing socialist media combined with the fairy-tale elite in Hollywood. who actually elected Mr. Obama.

The so-called "stimulus" bill just passed in the U.S. will stimulate that famous employer, the National Association for the Endowment for the Arts, build Milwaukee schools when 15 are empty with declining enrolment and so on.

It is complete PORK. There may be a few million of the billions here and there which might actually do a little but the stock market tells all as they have been in freefall as the "package" made it's way through the congress.

Yes is it payback time as the hog trough package goes out to all the supporters which the Democrats did not have the power to reward previously.

What Mr. Obama came to the Whitehouse to change was ONE THING ... WHO GET'S THE PORK?

The bill is full of nothing but spending to reward those who elected Mr. Obama and his "Democratic" presidential guards and very little to help the average worker at all.

It is a sad time when telling blatant lies and rewarding those who support you are more important than actually helping people cope with this deep recession.

So much for the country of Abraham Lincoln and a country which was "of the people, by the people, for the people". Unless of course those people are Democratic suckies.

If even comedian Jackie Mason sees this, there perhaps is hope for the American people somewhere.

Obama's Plan for Change

Research Suggests That GOVERNMENT STIMULUS SPENDING May Worsen Situation

Terence Corcoran reports in the National Post on Friday, January 16, 2009 that the STIMULUS everyone is yelling for may only work over a short period and may actually MAKE THE ECONOMY WORSE over longer periods.

See original article here.


WHO SAYS A STIMULUS ACTUALLY STIMULATES?

or is it simply temporary VIAGRA for the ECONOMY?

POINTS from article above ...

-"Except for one problem: What if it's not true? What if, as a wide and growing school of economists now suspect, the government spending and stimulus theory is a crock that is shovel-ready to be heaved out into the barnyard of economic waste?

- "What if, as a wide and growing school of economists now suspect, the government spending and stimulus theory is a crock that is shovel-ready to be heaved out into the barnyard of economic waste?"

- Even disciples of Keynes, such as Harvard's Greg Mankiw, recently highlighted economic studies that show government spending binges -- shocks, they are sometimes called -- don't seem to help the economy grow. They might even make it worse.

-One of the studies cited by Mr. Mankiw was by two European economists (Andrew Mountford and Harald Uhlig), titled "What are the Effects of Fiscal Shocks?" It looked at big deficit-financed spending increases and found that they stimulate the economy for the first year, but "only weakly" compared with a deficit financed tax cut. The overriding problem is that the deficits crowd out private investment and, over the long run, may make the economy worse. "The resulting higher debt burdens may have long-term consequences which are far worse than the short-term increase in GDP."

-A paper by two economists, including the current chief economist at the International Monetary Fund, Olivier Blanchard, concluded that increased taxes and "increases in government spending have a strong negative effect on private investment spending."

-Roberto Perotti, an Italian economist with links to Columbia University, in "Estimating the Effects of Fiscal Policy in OECD Countries," found nothing but bad news for Keynesians. Economic growth is little changed after big increases in government spending, but there are signs of weakening private investment.

- What we all might logically intuit to be true -- spend government money, especially borrowed money, and you stimulate growth -- has long been thought to be a fallacy by some economists. That thought is now spreading. British economist William Buiter said the massive Obama fiscal stimulus proposals "are afflicted by the Keynesian fallacy on steroids."

Except for one problem: What if it's not true? What if, as a wide and growing school of economists now suspect, the government spending and stimulus theory is a crock that is shovel-ready to be heaved out into the barnyard of economic waste?

The Prime Minister, in his comments on Friday, seemed to be riding right into the barnyard. He said the government would be simply "borrowing money that is not being used" and "that business is afraid to invest." By borrowing that money, and turning it over to all the groups and interests looking for part of the stimulus spending, he would be jump-starting activity while the private sector got its legs back.

Even disciples of Keynes, such as Harvard's Greg Mankiw, recently highlighted economic studies that show government spending binges -- shocks, they are sometimes called -- don't seem to help the economy grow. They might even make it worse.

One of the studies cited by Mr. Mankiw was by two European economists (Andrew Mountford and Harald Uhlig), titled "What are the Effects of Fiscal Shocks?" It looked at big deficit-financed spending increases and found that they stimulate the economy for the first year, but "only weakly" compared with a deficit financed tax cut. The overriding problem is that the deficits crowd out private investment and, over the long run, may make the economy worse. "The resulting higher debt burdens may have long-term consequences which are far worse than the short-term increase in GDP."

Two other studies point in the same direction. A paper by two economists, including the current chief economist at the International Monetary Fund, Olivier Blanchard, concluded that increased taxes and "increases in government spending have a strong negative effect on private investment spending."

Roberto Perotti, an Italian economist with links to Columbia University, in "Estimating the Effects of Fiscal Policy in OECD Countries," found nothing but bad news for Keynesians. Economic growth is little changed after big increases in government spending, but there are signs of weakening private investment.

What we all might logically intuit to be true -- spend government money, especially borrowed money, and you stimulate growth -- has long been thought to be a fallacy by some economists. That thought is now spreading. British economist William Buiter said the massive Obama fiscal stimulus proposals "are afflicted by the Keynesian fallacy on steroids."

Over at Stimulus Canada, Mr. Harper's plan looks somewhat more modest and Canada is not in the same fiscal fix as the United States. But Ottawa and the provinces are clearly ready to borrow big wads of money from the future to stimulate the economy today. It's money that is supposedly sitting out there in the timid hands of investors who will be repaid with tax dollars later.

But if that stimulus spending does not generate much fresh economic growth, and the borrowing chews up money that private investors could invest in the future, the shovel-ready brigades who get the cash today will produce only short term gains at the expense of the long term health of the economy.

[Doesn't it make you wonder when nobody seems to know what to do but some of the advice of the best researchers suggests that a STIMULUS may actually HARM the economy? Some economic researchers point to FDR and the Great Depression and suggest that FDR actually INCREASED the length of the depression. He was obviously and encourager and inspired hope which is an important factor as we see when the markets fall like bricks. But did his fiscal policy actually make it longer?]

The Stimulus Package

FDR POLICIES Prolonged Depression

FDR's policies prolonged Depression by 7 years, UCLA economists calculate

Two UCLA economists say they have figured out why the Great Depression dragged on for almost 15 years, and they blame a suspect previously thought to be beyond reproach: President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

After scrutinizing Roosevelt's record for four years, Harold L. Cole and Lee E. Ohanian conclude in a new study that New Deal policies signed into law 71 years ago thwarted economic recovery for seven long years.

"Why the Great Depression lasted so long has always been a great mystery, and because we never really knew the reason, we have always worried whether we would have another 10- to 15-year economic slump," said Ohanian, vice chair of UCLA's Department of Economics. "We found that a relapse isn't likely unless lawmakers gum up a recovery with ill-conceived stimulus policies."

In an article in the August issue of the Journal of Political Economy, Ohanian and Cole blame specific anti-competition and pro-labor measures that Roosevelt promoted and signed into law June 16, 1933.

"President Roosevelt believed that excessive competition was responsible for the Depression by reducing prices and wages, and by extension reducing employment and demand for goods and services," said Cole, also a UCLA professor of economics. "So he came up with a recovery package that would be unimaginable today, allowing businesses in every industry to collude without the threat of antitrust prosecution and workers to demand salaries about 25 percent above where they ought to have been, given market forces. The economy was poised for a beautiful recovery, but that recovery was stalled by these misguided policies."

Using data collected in 1929 by the Conference Board and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Cole and Ohanian were able to establish average wages and prices across a range of industries just prior to the Depression. By adjusting for annual increases in productivity, they were able to use the 1929 benchmark to figure out what prices and wages would have been during every year of the Depression had Roosevelt's policies not gone into effect. They then compared those figures with actual prices and wages as reflected in the Conference Board data.

In the three years following the implementation of Roosevelt's policies, wages in 11 key industries averaged 25 percent higher than they otherwise would have done, the economists calculate. But unemployment was also 25 percent higher than it should have been, given gains in productivity.

Meanwhile, prices across 19 industries averaged 23 percent above where they should have been, given the state of the economy. With goods and services that much harder for consumers to afford, demand stalled and the gross national product floundered at 27 percent below where it otherwise might have been.

"High wages and high prices in an economic slump run contrary to everything we know about market forces in economic downturns," Ohanian said. "As we've seen in the past several years, salaries and prices fall when unemployment is high. By artificially inflating both, the New Deal policies short-circuited the market's self-correcting forces."

The policies were contained in the National Industrial Recovery Act (NIRA), which exempted industries from antitrust prosecution if they agreed to enter into collective bargaining agreements that significantly raised wages. Because protection from antitrust prosecution all but ensured higher prices for goods and services, a wide range of industries took the bait, Cole and Ohanian found. By 1934 more than 500 industries, which accounted for nearly 80 percent of private, non-agricultural employment, had entered into the collective bargaining agreements called for under NIRA.

Cole and Ohanian calculate that NIRA and its aftermath account for 60 percent of the weak recovery. Without the policies, they contend that the Depression would have ended in 1936 instead of the year when they believe the slump actually ended: 1943.

Roosevelt's role in lifting the nation out of the Great Depression has been so revered that Time magazine readers cited it in 1999 when naming him the 20th century's second-most influential figure.

"This is exciting and valuable research," said Robert E. Lucas Jr., the 1995 Nobel Laureate in economics, and the John Dewey Distinguished Service Professor of Economics at the University of Chicago. "The prevention and cure of depressions is a central mission of macroeconomics, and if we can't understand what happened in the 1930s, how can we be sure it won't happen again?"

NIRA's role in prolonging the Depression has not been more closely scrutinized because the Supreme Court declared the act unconstitutional within two years of its passage.

"Historians have assumed that the policies didn't have an impact because they were too short-lived, but the proof is in the pudding," Ohanian said. "We show that they really did artificially inflate wages and prices."

Even after being deemed unconstitutional, Roosevelt's anti-competition policies persisted — albeit under a different guise, the scholars found. Ohanian and Cole painstakingly documented the extent to which the Roosevelt administration looked the other way as industries once protected by NIRA continued to engage in price-fixing practices for four more years.

The number of antitrust cases brought by the Department of Justice fell from an average of 12.5 cases per year during the 1920s to an average of 6.5 cases per year from 1935 to 1938, the scholars found. Collusion had become so widespread that one Department of Interior official complained of receiving identical bids from a protected industry (steel) on 257 different occasions between mid-1935 and mid-1936. The bids were not only identical but also 50 percent higher than foreign steel prices. Without competition, wholesale prices remained inflated, averaging 14 percent higher than they would have been without the troublesome practices, the UCLA economists calculate.

NIRA's labor provisions, meanwhile, were strengthened in the National Relations Act, signed into law in 1935. As union membership doubled, so did labor's bargaining power, rising from 14 million strike days in 1936 to about 28 million in 1937. By 1939 wages in protected industries remained 24 percent to 33 percent above where they should have been, based on 1929 figures, Cole and Ohanian calculate. Unemployment persisted. By 1939 the U.S. unemployment rate was 17.2 percent, down somewhat from its 1933 peak of 24.9 percent but still remarkably high. By comparison, in May 2003, the unemployment rate of 6.1 percent was the highest in nine years.

Recovery came only after the Department of Justice dramatically stepped enforcement of antitrust cases nearly four-fold and organized labor suffered a string of setbacks, the economists found.

"The fact that the Depression dragged on for years convinced generations of economists and policy-makers that capitalism could not be trusted to recover from depressions and that significant government intervention was required to achieve good outcomes," Cole said. "Ironically, our work shows that the recovery would have been very rapid had the government not intervened."

-UCLA-

http://newsroom.ucla.edu/portal/ucla/FDR-s-Policies-Prolonged-Depression-5409.aspx?RelNum=5409

LSMS368


AIG & Taxes & Free Enterprise

Mr Obama: Please Prove You ARE Non-Partisan

Mr. Obama will now have to prove he is non-partisan.

Editor: If he makes the mistake of believing that he is only the President of the 52% of the population that elected him and of the far-left liberal democrats, and tries to enact laws which the 46% who voted for McCain vehementally oppose, he will create more partisanship than has ever occurred before.

Now is his test. Will he leave failed socialistic policies like the War on Poverty and the Great Society behind, or will he make the same mistakes as his liberal precessors?

So now is the time for Mr. Obama to shine, but shine on the right as well as the left. Shine on the almost half the United States which are part of red states and red counties in blue states. He will become president of both and to be inclusive as an agent of change, he must govern in the best interests of middle America.

This article from the NP reflects some of that concern:

Sharing wealth will drain it

Obamanomics a drag on growth

Jacqueline Thorpe, National Post Published: Thursday, November 06, 2008

As the fervour fades, the world will have to get used to a new word: Obamanomics.

It means tax hikes for the rich, tax cuts for the poor and middle class, a promise to renegotiate NAFTA, greater union power, windfall taxes on oil and gas profits, higher taxes on capital gains and corporate dividends and more comprehensive health care coverage.

Barack Obama's economic plan may deliver the greater income equality Americans have apparently been craving, but also slower growth. Despite the vast tax hikes, it will cost a vast sum and U. S. federal finances, already ravaged by bailouts and recession, will slide deeper into the red.

The plan is not market-friendly but that does not mean the markets will not like an Obama presidency. If he can give the U. S. back its confidence, restore its reputation and sense of optimism, markets will take the bait as they have done with Democratic presidents so often in the past.

If he can become a Clintonstyle pragmatist, resist caving to every whim of a deeply left Congress, and not meddle with the bailouts that seem to be gingerly gaining traction, markets might even run with his presidency. The year from hell for investors could then be nearing an end.

Obamanomics is essentially about taking more money from the rich and giving it to the poor, plain old-fashioned "neighbourliness" as Mr. Obama has described it.

-

Or, as others have remarked, taking money from those who earn it and giving it to those who don't.

Under his income tax plan, Mr. Obama says he will provide tax cuts for 95% of Americans. He will do this by repealing Bush tax cuts -- set to expire in 2010 -- and bumping the top rates back to 36% from 33% and to 39.6% from 35%. Individuals earning over US$200,000 and families over US$250,000 will see sizable tax increases. This includes sole proprietors of businesses such as lawyers, accountants or plumbers called Joe.

Since 38% of Americans currently do not pay federal income taxes, Mr. Obama will provide them with refundable tax credits. Under his plan, 48% of Americans will pay no income tax.

"For the people that don't pay taxes, he is simply going to write them a cheque," says Andy Busch, global foreign exchange strategist at BMO Capital Markets. "That is income redistribution at its worst and produces very little value."

Other plans include raising taxes on capital gains and dividends to 20% from 15% for families earning more than US$250,000. He plans to leave the corporate tax rate at 35%, which in a world of rapidly falling rates, looks positively anti-business. He will introduce windfall taxes on oil and gas companies but offer US$4-billion in credits to U. S. auto-makers to retool to greener cars.

Much has been made of Mr. Obama's plan to renegotiate NAFTA to make it more labour-friendly, though no one seems to believe he will actually make it more protectionist.

The bottom line is this: Obama's economic plan is likely to be a drag on growth and it will cost money. The nonpartisan Tax Policy Center estimates Obama's program would add US$3.5-trillion to U. S. debt over the next 10 years, including interest. His plans for health care-- which may be delayed by financial necessity -- would tack on another US$1.6-trillion.

Read more here.

Obama - Who Are You?

Obama Sued by Democrat to Produce Birth Certificate Obama's Birth Certificate MUST SEE VIDEO Philip Berg, a DEMOCRAT is the man who is suing Barack Obama to hand over his Birth Certificate. The video below gives his Credentials and the Mr. Berg lays out his case in Berg v. Obama, and explains why it is important for the case to be resolved quickly. In his argumentation, Mr. Berg points out that Senator Obama could settle the lawsuit immediately by producing the proper documents to prove Obama is a natural-born citizen as required by our constitution. It is A MUST SEE..MUST PASS AROUND VIDEO!

NOW LA PRESIDENT SUPPORTS SARAH PALIN

Veteran Accuses Senator Obama of Being Wrong

OBAMA'S ECONOMIC PLAN

WHY IT IS WRONG TO CALL IRAQ A MISTAKE

OBAMA Comment by AltMuslim.com

This is an interesting comment by the website AltMuslim.com.
[Editor:Just because his middle name is Hussain does NOT mean he's a Muslim. Just because his church gave Lewis Farakhan last year a Lifetime Achievement award does

NOT mean he is a Muslim. Just because he wore traditional Muslim dress when visiting in Sudan does NOT mean he is a Muslim. So what does it mean? Read what they say for yourself.]
=================================

Friday, April 18, 2008

Obama's Problem with the Truth [David Freddoso]

First the "hundred years" controversy, and now this. Is the man a liar, or are his speechwriters and advisors just that willing to leave him vulnerable to attack?

Obama's Problem
February 07, 2008 01:00 PM EST

The Peculiar Theology of Black Liberation

Spengler, Asia Times (Hong Kong), March 18, 2008

Senator Barack Obama is not a Muslim, contrary to invidious rumors. But he belongs to a Christian church whose doctrine casts Jesus Christ as a “black messiah” and blacks as “the chosen people”. At best, this is a radically different kind of Christianity than most Americans acknowledge; at worst it is an ethnocentric heresy.

What played out last week on America’s television screens was a clash of two irreconcilable cultures, the posture of “black liberation theology” and the mainstream American understanding of Christianity. Obama, who presented himself as a unifying figure, now seems rather the living embodiment of the clash.

One of the strangest dialogues in American political history ensued on March 15 when Fox News interviewed Obama’s pastor, the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, of Chicago’s Trinity Church. Wright asserted the authority of the “black liberation” theologians James Cone and Dwight Hopkins:

Wright: How many of Cone’s books have you read? How many of Cone’s book have you read?

Sean Hannity: Reverend, Reverend?

(crosstalk)

Wright: How many books of Cone’s have you head?

Hannity: I’m going to ask you this question . . .

Wright: How many books of Dwight Hopkins have you read?

Hannity: You’re very angry and defensive. I’m just trying to ask a question here.

Wright: You haven’t answered—you haven’t answered my question.

Hopkins is a full professor at the University of Chicago’s Divinity School; Cone is now distinguished professor at New York’s Union Theological Seminary. They promote a “black power” reading of Christianity, to which liberal academic establishment condescends.

Obama referred to this when he asserted in a March 14 statement, “I knew Reverend Wright as someone who served this nation with honor as a United States Marine, as a respected biblical scholar, and as someone who taught or lectured at seminaries across the country, from Union Theological Seminary to the University of Chicago.” But the fact the liberal academy condescends to sponsor black liberation theology does not make it less peculiar to mainstream American Christians. Obama wants to talk about what Wright is, rather than what he says. But that way lies apolitical quicksand.

Since Christianity taught the concept of divine election to the Gentiles, every recalcitrant tribe in Christendom has rebelled against Christian universalism, insisting that it is the “Chosen People” of God—French, English, Russian, Germans and even (through the peculiar doctrine of Mormonism) certain Americans. America remains the only really Christian country in the industrial world, precisely because it transcends ethnicity. One finds ethnocentricity only in odd corners of its religious life; one of these is African-American.

During the black-power heyday of the late 1960s, after the murder of the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr, the mentors of Wright decided that blacks were the Chosen People. James Cone, the most prominent theologian in the “black liberation” school, teaches that Jesus Christ himself is black. As he explains:

Christ is black therefore not because of some cultural or psychological need of black people, but because and only because Christ really enters into our world where the poor were despised and the black are, disclosing that he is with them enduring humiliation and pain and transforming oppressed slaves into liberating servants.

Theologically, Cone’s argument is as silly as the “Aryan Christianity” popular in Nazi Germany, which claimed that Jesus was not a Jew at all but an Aryan Galilean, and that the Aryan race was the “chosen people”. Cone, Hopkins and Wright do not propose, of course, to put non-blacks in concentration camps or to conquer the world, but racially-based theology nonetheless is a greased chute to the nether regions.

Biblical theology teaches that even the most terrible events to befall Israel, such as the Babylonian destruction of Jerusalem in 586 BCE, embody the workings of divine justice, even if humankind cannot see God’s purpose. James Cone sees the matter very differently. Either God must do what we want him to do, or we must reject him, Cone maintains:

Black theology refuses to accept a God who is not identified totally with the goals of the black community. If God is not for us and against white people, then he is a murderer, and we had better kill him. The task of black theology is to kill Gods who do not belong to the black community. . . . Black theology will accept only the love of God which participates in the destruction of the white enemy. What we need is the divine love as expressed in Black Power, which is the power of black people to destroy their oppressors here and now by any means at their disposal. Unless God is participating in this holy activity, we must reject his love. [1]

In the black liberation theology taught by Wright, Cone and Hopkins, Jesus Christ is not for all men, but only for the oppressed:

In the New Testament, Jesus is not for all, but for the oppressed, the poor and unwanted of society, and against oppressors. . . . Either God is for black people in their fight for liberation and against the white oppressors, or he is not [Cone].

In this respect black liberation theology is identical in content to all the ethnocentric heresies that preceded it. Christianity has no use for the nations, a “drop of the bucket” and “dust on the scales”, in the words of Isaiah. It requires that individuals turn their back on their ethnicity to be reborn into Israel in the spirit. That is much easier for Americans than for the citizens of other nations, for Americans have no ethnicity. But the tribes of the world do not want to abandon their Gentile nature and as individuals join the New Israel. Instead they demand eternal life in their own Gentile flesh, that is, to be the “Chosen People”.

That is the “biblical scholarship” to which Obama referred in his March 14 defense of Wright and his academic prominence. In his response to Hannity, Wright genuinely seemed to believe that the authority of Cone and Hopkins, who now hold important posts at liberal theological seminaries, was sufficient to make the issue go away. His faith in the white establishment is touching; he honestly cannot understand why the white reporters at Fox News are bothering him when the University of Chicago and the Union Theological Seminary have put their stamp of approval on black liberation theology.

Many things that the liberal academy has adopted, though, will horrify most Americans, and not only “black liberation theology” (Queer Studies comes to mind, among other things). It cannot be in Obama’s best interests to appeal to the authority of Cone, whose unapologetic racism must be repugnant to the great majority of Americans, including the majority of black Americans, who for the most part belong to Christian churches that preach mainstream Christian doctrine. Christianity teaches unconditional love for a God whose love for humankind is absolute; it does not teach the repudiation of a God who does not destroy our enemies on the spot.

Whether Obama takes seriously the doctrines that Wright preaches is another matter. It is possible that Obama does not believe a word of what Wright, Cone and Hopkins teach. Perhaps he merely used the Trinity United Church of Christ as a political stepping-stone. African-American political life is centered around churches, and his election to the Illinois State Senate with the support of Chicago’s black political machine required church membership. Trinity United happens to be Chicago’s largest and most politically active black church.

Obama views Wright rather at arm’s length: as the New York Times reported on April 30, 2007:

Reverend Wright is a child of the 60s, and he often expresses himself in that language of concern with institutional racism and the struggles the African-American community has gone through,” Mr Obama said. “He analyzes public events in the context of race. I tend to look at them through the context of social justice and inequality.

Obama holds his own views close. But it seems unlikely that he would identify with the ideological fits of the black-power movement of the 1960s. Obama does not come to the matter with the perspective of an American black, but of the child of a left-wing anthropologist raised in the Third World, as I wrote elsewhere (Obama’s women reveal his secret , Asia Times Online, February 26, 2008). It is possible that because of the Wright affair Obama will suffer for what he pretended to be, rather than for what he really is.

Note

1. See William R Jones, “Divine Racism: The Unacknowledged Threshold Issue for Black Theology”, in African-American Religious Thought: An Anthology, ed Cornel West and Eddie Glaube (Westminster John Knox Press).

Original article

(Posted on March 17, 2008)


Comments

I have mixed feelings about the whole Jeremiah Wright ordeal. On one hand, I understand his feelings. As a white man, I choose to stand with my race just as he chooses to stand with his. Thus, I can’t fault him for his views. On the other hand, I also recognize that Rev. Wright would never attempt to understand my feelings or concerns so why should I try to understand his? The fact is, people like Wright are not intellectually consistent with their beliefs; they preach ethno-centrism and border-line hatred of other races yet would accuse a white man of being “racist” for the slightest perceived insult.

Posted by Conrad R. at 6:03 PM on March 17


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Jeremiah Wright, Obama's Former Pastor - Christian in Name but what???

March 26, 2008

How the Leftist Churches Set a Time Bomb for the Democrats

By James Lewis
Until the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Senator Obama's spiritual mentor in Black Liberation Theology, popped out of the woodwork, I didn't even know about BLT -- Black Liberation Theology. But the doctrines of Black Liberation have been preached since 1966 in black churches, with the enthusiastic support of white churches of the Left, notably the United Church of Christ. The Rev. Wright runs an official UCC church.

Though I am not a professional theologian, I daresay that Jesus would not, repeat not, approve of BLT. Because Black Liberation Theology seems to go straight against every single word in the Sermon on the Mount. Odd that the UCC has never noticed that over the last fifty years.

In fact, the liberal churches have bestowed great influence and prestige on the inventor of Black Liberation Theology, a Dr. James Hal Cone. Writes Dr. Cone, among other things,


* "Black theology refuses to accept a God who is not identified totally with the goals of the black community. If God is not for us and against white people, then he is a murderer, and we had better kill him."

* "All white men are responsible for white oppression."

* "While it is true that blacks do hate whites, black hatred is not racism."

* "Theologically, Malcolm X was not far wrong when he called the white man "the devil.""

* "The black theologian must reject any conception of God which stifles black self-determination by picturing God as a God of all peoples."

* "We have had too much of white love, the love that tells blacks to turn the other cheek and go the second mile. What we need is the divine love as expressed in black power, which is the power of blacks to destroy their oppressors, here and now, by any means at their disposal."

Apparently liberal religious authorities like those at the United Church of Christ love this preaching so much that they have made Dr. Cone a professor at the Union Theological Seminary, the "Charles Augustus Briggs Distinguished Professor of Systematic Theology." It is a stamp of official approval for a peddler of race hatred.

What would Jesus say? Well, we may never know that, but in a month we'll know what Pennsylvania Democrats will say. And if they turn thumbs down on that grandchild of Black Liberation Theology, Senator Barack Obama, the Democrats will have no one to blame but themselves. Including the Churches of the Left, which have reveled in rage-mongering radical chic since the Sixties.

If you've ever wondered why black people in America have had such a hard time rising in society, even after slavery ended in 1865, even after the Civil Rights Acts of the 1960s, even after affirmative action tilted the playing field in their favor, the answer has to be found in the doctrines that have been preached to blacks by their most powerful leaders. If Black Liberation Theology is to be believed, blacks can never make it on their own. They have to rely on a separatist, rage-filled ideology, supported whole-heartedly by white Leftist churches.

The Left has a long, long habit of shafting the very people is purports to love. Instead, the Left only empowers Leftist elites. Look at the history of the Soviet Union, of Maoist China, of Fidel Castro. Who profited from those regimes except the elites, dining on caviar while ordinary people starved? Today Hugo Chavez is squandering Venezuela's oil wealth on his personal ego trips. It is the poor who suffer from Chavez' caudillismo.

What the Church of the Left have done to poor blacks is just like that. Instead of supporting messages of hope and strength, they celebrated the rage demagogues who keep people in thrall. "Black Liberation" is an enslavement of the mind. If you keep black people popping with anger at whites, half a century after the end of Jim Crow, you are not helping them. You are hurting them.

For the Democrats, who have knowingly supported this corruption of the poor for decades, the churches of Left have set a time bomb. Next month we'll see if it explodes.

Maybe it's Divine justice.

James Lewis blogs at dangeroustimes.wordpress.com/

Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/2008/03/how_the_leftist_churches_set_a.html at March 30, 2008 - 11:06:16 PM EDT

Why is Obama Ducking the Questions? Only One Possible Reason!

[excerpted from http://proteinwisdom.com/?p=11541]

March 21, 2008
Dems 2008: McClatchy discovers Black Liberation Theology [Karl]

Given the chain’s general leftward slant, it is all the more notable that McClatchy is perhaps the first establishment media outlet to report some of the specifics of the Black Liberation Theology that is the vision of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, Barack Obama’s church — and to note (as already noted here) that Obama dodged the larger issue:

Obama’s speech Tuesday on race in America was hailed as a masterful handling of the controversy over divisive sermons by the longtime pastor of Trinity United, the recently retired Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr.

But in repudiating and putting in context Wright’s inflammatory lines about whites and U.S. foreign policy, the Democratic presidential front-runner didn’t address other potentially controversial facts about his church and its ties.

McClatchy’s Margaret Talev went so far as to interview Dr. James H. Cone, who first presented Black Liberation Theology as a system of thought in the late 1960s. Dr. Cone reaffirmed his prior view that Trinity most embodies his message and opined that he thought the Rev. Wright’s successor, the Rev. Otis Moss III, would continue the tradition. (It does seem likely so far.)

Unfortunately, the piece quotes only Dr. Cone and Dwight Hopkins, a Trinity member and liberation theology professor at the University of Chicago’s divinity school. Apparently, McClatchy could not be bothered to contact neutral theologians or critics of Black Liberation Theology. As a result, Cone and Hopkins get away with softening the harder edges of their theology.

Nevertheless, McClatchy has now done more than most of the establishment media (and certainly more than TIME magazine’s new puff piece or the ignorant and inane ramblings of E.J. Dionne, Jr.) on the underlying issue, even as it hypothesizes Obama’s church membership is one of political convenience rather than reading Obama’s writings on the subject, which are consistent with the theology.

Most important, McClatchy sought answers from the Obama campaign on the issue:

It isn’t clear where Obama’s beliefs and the church’s diverge. Through aides, Obama declined requests for an interview or to respond to written questions about his thoughts on Jesus, Cone or liberation theology.

That is the standard response of the Obama campaign to any controversy, as anyone trying to report on Obama’s relationship with Tony Rezko will tell you. Obama will not answer press inquiries until the establishment media turns up the heat to the point where he feels compelled to do so. That pattern should trouble people far beyond those concerned about the degree to which Obama susbscribes to Black Liberation Theology.

(h/t Gateway Pundit.)

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Press4Truth contains opinions of various authors and does not necessarily represent the views of Press 4 Truth. They are presented often to challenge the accepted thinking which very often is obtained from soundbytes rather than study of the issues.