Thursday, April 30, 2009
Note, he has updated his twitter page 110 times and is still only at 950 followers. All this while he's running hard in a contentious primary with two other Dems.
Hate to break it to ya, Terry, but your potential future rival, Republican AG Bob McConnell, has 1,837 followers and he's only updated his page 96 times. All while he sits back, raises money, and watches you Dems rip eachother apart.
Anyone else feeling good about 2009?
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Randy Pullen, the RNC's elected treasurer, former RNC General Counsel David Norcross and three other former top RNC officers have presented Mr. Steele with a resolution, calling for a new set of checks and balances on the chairman's power to dole out money.For shit's sake, Republicans. Stop stepping on eachother's toes.
The powers include new controls on awarding contracts and spending money on outside legal and other services.
Clearly this was done for one reason, to embarrass Steele. Now, you may or may not support Steele. After all, he lost NY-20, right? (of course, we'll ignore that the NY-20 seat was won by 40,000 votes in 2008...and was lost in the special by 400).
First and foremost, Pullen and Cross knew that this effort would make news and throw a wrench in Steele's efforts as Chairman. All this despite the RNC far outraising the DNC and Republicans holding solid leads in the NJ and VA Gov races coming up in the Fall.
Checks and balances? For a campaign organization? Ridiculous. Campaign organizations need to move fast and efficiently. Slowing down the process will only present more challenges in our effort to regain power.
Lay off. Steele won. Accept it and let him do his job.
"[In 2008], there was no voter fraud."
In yesterday's Columbus Dispatch -
Three staff members for Vote Today Ohio, an independent get-out-the-vote organization supporting Barack Obama, pleaded guilty in Franklin County this afternoon to improper voting.And to think Brunner has a shot at being Senator.
"We told them we wanted to do everything we could to retain employees in Columbus and Westerville and also expand," [Lt. Gov Lee] Fisher said. "And we were prepared to offer financial incentives, especially a job-creation tax credit.""Retain employees and expand".
Thanks to a "financial incentive".
This means the Strickland Administration understands and believes that lower taxes can help bring and retain jobs in Ohio.
And yet, in the 843 days Ted Strickland has served as Governor, he has yet to propose any kind of tax incentive at a larger scale in order to help all Ohio businesses. This despite Ohio maintaining the 4th worst business climate in the country.
Let's make it clear for the Governor.
More businesses in Ohio means more jobs. More jobs in Ohio means more tax revenue. More tax revenue in Ohio means being more capable of satisfying the constitutional requirement of balancing the budget.
And yet, JPMorgan Chase are the ones benefiting from a tax incentive.
Ted Strickland must answer for letting Ohio fall into this hole.
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
So now we can safely assume it will be Specter vs. Toomey in the general election next year. Some have said that this dooms Toomey's chances since Pennsylvania isn't prone to electing hard right conservatives.
Well to those I say, don't forget Sen. Rick Santorum - a social conservative who represented PA up until 2006. Santorum lost for a couple reasons, increased negative environment for Republicans at a national level and an opponent in Bob Casey who was widely known and opposed to abortion, thereby stealing one of Santorum's biggest constituencies.
So what does this mean for Specter v. Toomey?
Well now you have a pro-choice Democrat who betrayed his old base and of late, has been popular with Democrats and split with Independents.
The question becomes, how will Independents react to the switch? Will they see it as the obvious political, rather than idealistic, move that it is? If so, will that turn them off or have they become so cynical that they don't care?
I think it's safe to assume that Republicans will have the edge in GOTV. They'll be ticked and want their revenge against the one that betrayed them. Without Obama on the ticket, this will make it more difficult to inspire Democrats to go out and vote for the guy without any scruples.
But at the end of the day, this race will come down to what most toss-ups in 2010 will be about - the economy.
Why isn't the government ceasing all non-needed spending? Like photo ops, for instance? That's what companies who need to borrow to fund operations do.We're asking, nay, forcing companies to bend at the will of the President in order to conduct their business in the way the White House sees fit. This fly-over is such a blatant double-standard that you have to wonder how something like this could ever take place.
Easy. To the Obama Administration, this isn't their money.
20 points. That's the lead Strickland maintains according to the last major poll released on the race coming up next year.
211,000. That's the number of jobs Ohio has lost in just the past 12 months.
2. The number of consecutive weeks Ted Strickland has foregone his responsibilities as Governor and gone on campaign trips to Texas and New York City in order to build relationships with future contributors.
1. The number of terms Ted Strickland is going to have thanks to his completely inept style of leadership.
Monday, April 27, 2009
So, here's a little thing I like to call sneaky racism. Sneaky because either the perpetrators don't know they're doing it, or they do and almost nobody else does. It's a form of hypocrisy wherein seemingly normal white people kinda forget about stereotypes because they're too busy patting themselves on the back for their own day-to-day cultural sensitivity. For example, remember the Office Max Rubberband Man?
Apparently, having a black man with a big 'ol silly afro and shiny smile dance around like a court jester delivering supplies to white people doesn't strike everyone as racist, but it does me.
Consider Joe Biden's recent description of President Obama.
“Well, there isn’t one person I could compare him to, but he’s like a cross between Denzel Washington and Franklin Roosevelt.”Seriously? Hey, Joe... did ya HAVE to throw Denzel in there? I'm seriously curious why you did. Nah, I'm just messin' with ya. I know what you mean. He's black. That makes him different. Take Eli Whitney, for instance. I've always thought of him as a cross between Jethro Tull and Denzel.
Bravo, Joe. You are truly a pioneer of sneaky racism.
Feel free to take a moment to contain your laughter.
Well, since 3BP was one of the first to unveil the major issues with voter fraud in Ohio during the last election, we'll have to disagree with our Secretary of State.
Of course, considering how often she was out of town and not in charge of her office, I guess I can understand why she missed all these cases of voter fraud.
Friday, April 24, 2009
Thursday, April 23, 2009
April 23rd - White House National Economic Council Director Larry Summers nods off while U.S. President Barack Obama talks to the press after a meeting with officials from the credit card industry at the White House.
Feb. 24th - President Obama's fiscal sustainability summit at the White House Monday apparently wasn't all that stimulating.
The Financial Times is reporting that Larry Summers, head of Obama's National Economic Council, actually fell asleep at the podium.
Well, it turns out he made quite an impression in Noble County on April 17th.
My wife Pam and I attended the Noble County Lincoln Day Dinner last Friday evening. John Kasich was their keynote speaker. They had a great crowd attending and I believe that was the first Lincoln Dinner they have held in several years. I am from Belmont County but have heard that Noble county is still buzzing in the barber shops (no pun intended), the restaurants, etc., about Kasich's visit to their county. It is refreshing to hear someone in the political field tell it like it is. There is light at the end of the tunnel, especially if John Kasich does decide to run for Governor. I am encouraged. Let's pray he does.Thanks to Kent, Rachel and Dustin for writing in. These three folks are perfect examples of why Kasich's tour of Lincoln Day Dinners is going to pay off so well when he officially kicks off his campaign. While speaking to thousands of activists that support his cause, he has lit a fire under them that will provide the grassroots swell that is necessary to win a statewide campaign.
I would like to take the opportunity to let you know what you missed if you were not able to attend the Noble County Lincoln Day Dinner. John Kasich gave an enthusiastic speech to the group with an inspiring message of how when you ask, you just might receive! John encourages everyone to leave every situation better than you found it. I have been a long time admirer of John and his motto of "Stand for Something"! I was moved by being in attendance and I know many others were as well. It would be an enormous blessing to Ohioans for John to run for Governor for this great state!
I was lucky enough to be able to attend Noble County's Lincoln Day Dinner at the last minute thanks to one of my friends who invited me to tag along. Little did I know that John Kasich was in attendance that night and the main speaker of the night as well. During John's speech he told a story of when he was 18 years old and he wanted to make a difference on something he was passionate about so he wrote a letter to the President of the United States about it. He was very surprised when we recieved an actual invite from the President himself to go to Washington D.C. and meet with him. That just showed to me personally that even though I am a 19 year old, I can make a difference and stand up for what is right in not only my county, but in my state and country as well!
When it comes to cutting spending, I'm starting to think Gov. Strickland just throws a dart at a wall filled with 3x5 notecards with the names of Ohio's agencies on them.
It's now come to this.
Just when Ohioans need help the most, the state legislature plans to slash $181 million a year from the county agencies that provide aid to the needy and disabled.Now, I'm all for making government more efficient. As taxpayers, we should expect responsible spending practices from our state government.
County officials in central Ohio and across the state say they will be cutting caseworkers who investigate allegations of child and elder abuse and process applications for food stamps, health care and other services.
Chip Spinning, director of the Madison County Department of Job and Family Services, said that despite a 25 percent increase in reports of alleged abuse and neglect, he expects to cut his child welfare staff from eight caseworkers to four.
But Governor Strickland's inaction to improve Ohio's economic standing has placed us in this position. Rather than cutting what we want to, we are cutting what we have to.
Now the question becomes, how do the voters react? Will they place the blame on Strickland?
Strategically speaking, the Republican opponent must make sure Strickland has ownership of Ohio's economic situation. He must highlight the lost jobs and drastic spending cuts, then blame them on Strickland's 'hide under the desk and hope it goes away' economic policy.
As Governor, Strickland has only been reactive - relying on the one-time federal stimulus dollars to balance the budget and haphazardly cutting spending when much of this could have been avoided with lower taxes and increased incentives for businesses.
Now let's hope the next guy can dig us out of this hole.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Ohio conservatives may have found themselves a new hero.
Warren County Commissioner David Young made headlines today by refusing to accept federal stimulus dollars.
Commissioners have refused $373,000 in stimulus money to buy three new transit buses and make other improvements to the fleet, citing philosophical objections to the spending.'Atta boy, Commish. That's how doing the right thing can get your name in papers.
The Ohio Department of Transportation says it's the only rejection the agency is aware of.
Warren County also wants to return $1.8 million in stimulus funding for replacing windows and roofs on government buildings to make them more energy efficient.
Commissioner David Young says the county won't spend stimulus money on things it doesn't need.
Warren County is now represented by Jean Schmidt and Mike Turner in Congress. Turner had a American Conservative Rating of only 63 in 2008. If Rep. Turner keeps that up, he may find someone more than happy to replace him.
Monday, April 20, 2009
Remind you of a certain movie with Kevin Kline?
Original ideas? Who needs 'em? At least in Dave they cut $650 million.
Obama's plan to build so-called high-speed rail in ten new corridors is unfair to taxpayers and bad for the environment. Here are the most important problems with the plan.Read more at The Corner...
1. NOT TRUE HIGH-SPEED RAIL
Except in California, the trains Obama is proposing are "moderate-speed rail," running at top speeds of 110 mph and average speeds of only 60 to 70 mph. Many American railroads ran trains this fast in the 1930s through the 1960s, and they were unable to keep people out of their cars.
Only California is proposing true high-speed rail (as fast as 220 mph), but this will be extremely expensive. A true, nationwide high-speed rail network would cost more than half a trillion dollars, and wouldn't even provide through high-speed service from New York to Chicago, much less to the West Coast. (Obama's plan, when fully built out, will cost about $100 billion.)
Since they'd rather twitter than read history, they need to observe a modern-day version of it and see how it works.
Many are up in arms about the cordial engagement of Obama towards Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez, and rightly so. But Obama feels that using new diplomatic tactics like hugs and fistbumps are the way to cool an evil heart.
Fine. Since we aren't going to convince his Administration otherwise, we will sit back, wait, and watch.
In about 3 and a half years we will have an opportunity to gauge its success. At that time if relations are better with Venezuela, economic relationships are improving and the Venezuelan government has substantively improved in the realm of human rights, treatment of dissidents and media restrictions -- then we can say, in this instance, it worked.
But, if we're at the status quo with only symbolic rather than substantive improvements, then we'll know, once again, it is better to hold an evil dictator's feet to the fire than it is helping their favorite book reach the best-seller list.
With the Draft John movement bursting at the seams, I'd love to get reports from my readers about how John is being received at these events, and any other details you can provide.
From what I've heard, John has been getting record crowds at each Lincoln Day dinner he has attended over the past 15 months, including a whopping 425 at the event in Gov. Strickland's hometown of Scioto County. For the uninitiated, in the past 425 attendees would be considered a vast success at even the biggest Ohio county Lincoln Day dinners. These dinners are fundraisers for the County Party in which they are hosted, and have given Kasich a chance to not only reach out to thousands upon thousands of GOP activists ready to hit the ground running when he announces, but also put untold amounts into GOP coffers throughout the state.
So, if you attend the upcoming dinners in Hardin, Jefferson or Richland counties, shoot me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll post it here on the blog. Thanks!
Sunday, April 19, 2009
Publishing a grassroots website urging John Kasich to run for Governor of Ohio.
Capitalizing on his fiery performance at the Columbus Tea Party, this website is a must-visit for any Ohioan hoping to turn Ohio around.
Visit runjohnrun.org and sign your name to the petition.
Friday, April 17, 2009
(click to enlarge)
What a schmuck.
Once again under Gov. Strickland, Ohio's unemployment numbers increased. Our unemployment rate is at a staggering 9.7%. Just one year ago we were at 6.1%.
That's 211,000 jobs lost in only one year.
But it's going to get better, right? How much worse can it get?
Well, don't worry. Strickland is hard at work creating new jobs for...Kentucky.
Yep, today we learned that DHL, a company that employs 1,000 people in the 12,000 person town of Wilmington, is moving to the Cincy/Kentucky airport (for the non-Buckeyes out there, the airport is located in Northern Kentucky). Mind you, they had only been in Wilmington since 2005, but apparently there is something about Ohio that makes it an unattractive place to maintain their business.
Gov. Strickland seems to think his so-called promise not to raise taxes on Ohioans is enough. Well, when you have the 4th worst business tax climate in the country, that isn't enough. And he hasn't done one thing during his term in office to fix it.
You want jobs back in the Buckeye State, Ohioans? Vote Gov. Strickland out of office.
Thursday, April 16, 2009
I'll just include the portion that raised my eyebrow here:
So to sum it up, a Great Society program aimed at providing mortgages for minorities who would not have otherwise qualified was ultimately taken advantage of, putting people into homes they could never afford. This boosted home sales and prices in the short term but ultimately caused a massive collapse of the market.
Both in the 70's and 80's, real-estate operators used payoffs, ruses and fraudulent statements to secure inflated amounts of F.H.A. mortgage insurance for hundreds of clients, overwhelmingly lower-income members of minority groups who stood little chance of meeting mortgage payments on their often dilapidated houses. In many cases, prosecutors charged, the ''clients'' were fictitious.
The results have been huge numbers of defaults that have left the real-estate operators collecting millions of dollars in insurance payments from the Federal Government, while hundreds, if not thousands, of families have lost their dreams of owning homes, as their houses, in already hard-pressed neighborhoods, fell vacant.
The Brooklyn scenario, which Federal prosecutors estimated led to 5,000 vacant houses and defaults on mortgages totaling $100 million in 1968 and a similar amount in 1970 and 1971, was repeated in so many other cities that it became an issue in the 1972 Presidential campaign.
As we all know, the Great Society was a pet project of Lyndon Johnson who was naturally a member of the Party of Unintended Consequences.
Thank goodness that party learned its lessons and didn't try taking the same sort of program national just a few decades later.
What's that? They did?
From that very same reputable newspaper.
Here's a hint to our friends from the left: perhaps the happy, cheery "everyone gets a house and if you don't agree, you're a racist" stuff doesn't work and we shouldn't try it again.
As was pointed out on this blog last October, strangely not mentioned in all of that was the then-governor of Texas, upon whose feet this whole mess is now being laid.
A further example of how the modern version of the POUC is repeating itself is explained better here than I could.
The key bit here is that if the Feds had not been guaranteeing mortgages (bailing out banks for taking reckless risks), blockbusting could never have happened. The FHA, in effect, financed the destruction of Bushwick and countless other communities across the country. The fires, the vacancies, all those empty lots — point your blaming fingers at the federal government for way overstretching its bounds. This world is littered with the ashes, rubble, and corpses of good intentions, and for a long time in Bushwick you could find all three.
As we learned from the Governor's budget:
Counting state dollars, federal aid, and increased borrowing, Ohio will spend nearly 44 percent more in 2011 than it did a decade earlier if spending levels in the two-year budget that Gov. Ted Strickland has placed before lawmakers are adopted.Why is that important? Well, it turns out this decision to drastically increase spending is going to end up costing Ohioans much more than they bargained for when they put Strickland into office.
How do we know?
Well, today Ohio Auditor Mary Taylor announced that Ohio will face an $8 billion shortfall in 2012-2013.
Using tax and spending figures in Strickland's proposed 2010-11 budget, along with "modest" projections of growth in education, Medicaid and other high-priority areas, Taylor said the state will need $3.9 billion more in 2012 and $4 billion more in 2013 to balance the budget.An important note before we continue, remember the Ohio Constitution requires a balanced budget. That means Ohio absolutely must pay for this shortfall of $8 billion. If we don't get control of this crisis quickly, there will be only two ways to pay for it -- drastic cuts in spending or drastic increases in taxes.
Unless the governor and lawmakers curb spending in the two-year budget that takes effect July 1, the options two years hence will be limited to even deeper spending cuts or big tax increases, Taylor said.
If that doesn't shock you, this will.
Strickland's budget chief agrees there is a massive shortfall.
Sabety conceded under questioning that despite the nearly $7 billion in one-time money in this budget, state tax revenues are only expected to increase by about $1 billion in 2012-13.But does the Governor see this as an issue? Apparently not.
You may want to make sure you're sitting down for this one.
[Gov. Strickland said], "we're dealing with the budget for 2010 and 2011, and the standard that I'm being held to is, 'How are you going to balance the budget in 2012 and 2013?' It's still 2009. I just don't get it.He doesn't get why it's important to consider the future economic standing of the State of Ohio?
Mr. Strickland, you do understand that you're the Governor, right? It's your job to strive for the longstanding financial well-being of the great state of Ohio.
How is this as a reason to consider the long-term future of the state?
[In order to pay for the California's budget shortfall], the California Budget Project estimates the [state ordered] tax hikes will disproportionately hurt working-class earners. A couple with $40,000 in taxable income will see a 12.9 percent increase in taxes, while a couple making $750,000 would get a 2.9 percent increase.Gov. Strickland, are you sure you don't want to consider the long-term effects of a massive budget shortfall? Clearly, you don't get it.
But I know someone that does.
John Kasich has a record of fixing budget boondoggles at a national level.
Recharge Ohio. Support John Kasich.
h/t: Y-Town Buck
Obama says an upgrade to the nation's train system could relieve congestion, help clean the air and save on energy in morning remarks.Yep. Amtrak is at full capacity. This is truly a crisis.
"This is not some fanciful, pie-in-the-sky vision of the future. It's happening now. The problem is, it's happening elsewhere."
Among the politicians, Kasich drew the loudest cheers and chants of "Run, John, run!" He struck a populist tone, noting his own roots as the son of a mailman.WBNS in Columbus did a great job covering the event. You can see the video here.
"The next generation better than this generation: We'll fight for it, won't we?" he asked to applause. "We know what the winning formula is. The winning formula is low taxes."
By the way, the next liberal I hear that uses the all-too-unoriginal 'teabagging' joke gets a punch in the mouth.
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
But it seems turnout at these events has been much higher than expected. The coverage on Fox has been constant, and even though CNN has been their usual snarky douchebag selves, they've still covered the protests, and that's a positive for the movement. It lends the movement credibility, and makes it more difficult to be considered a fringe protest.
The problem with these events has been branding. Rick Santelli from CNBC inspired round two of the 'tea party' name , but it has enabled the left and the MSM to think it's all about taxes, and in turn, build their talking points around it. I think we can all agree first and foremost, this is about out of control spending and a renewed need for fiscal responsibility.
But what's vital at this point is the 'what now...'
What do we start working on tomorrow?
As we wade through the puddles of today's Tea Parties, I was curious where President Obama stood with his approval numbers. Per Rasmussen, the pollster considered the most accurate of the 2008 election, Obama's approval rating stands at 55%. This seemed a bit low to me since the President should be experiencing a bit of a Pirate Bump by now.
So I wondered where Bush stood at the same time in his Presidency, mid-April of 2001. Since Rasmussen wasn't available, it seems fair from a statistical perspective to use an average of four major polls to determine Bush's approval rating at the time. That's when the surprise came in...
ABC News/Washington Post Poll
4/19-22/01 - 64%
FOX News/Opinion Dynamics Poll
4/18-19/01 - 63%
NBC News/Wall Street Journal Poll
4/21-23/01 - 56%
USA Today/Gallup Poll
4/20-22/01 - 62%
An average approval rating of 61.25%. Six points higher than Obama.
All despite being only a few short months out of one of the most divisive elections in American history.
h/t: Duke Buck
It seems an entire House caucus is having trouble making sense of Strickland's boondoggle of an education funding plan.
This morning's press conference to unveil the plan has been rescheduled to Thursday, as Democrats continue to pore over district-by-district funding runs.Translation: We've got absolutely zero idea what the eff Gov. Strickland was doing.
“We are working to ensure that the impacts of the legislative changes are accurate and that requires additional diligence in the calculation and review process, said Rep. Stephen Dyer, D-Green. “Given the significance of these reforms, it is important that we are communicating accurately with those impacted by this comprehensive reform effort.”
Good luck, fellas. You'll need it.
Either way, I'm interested in hearing how things went at your respective Tea Parties, whether in Columbus, DC, or wherever.
Send any pictures/stories to me: email@example.com.
Have fun out there. Don't get teargassed.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
I look forward to seeing the Guv's plan for scaling back this Department, since they're clearly not necessary.
The Strickland administration paid a Columbus attorney nearly $50,000 to help it draft the governor's new school-funding plan.
The state Office of Budget and Management requested that Squire Sanders & Dempsey be brought in to draft legislative language because of the firm's previous work on education funding, said Amanda Wurst, spokeswoman for Gov. Ted Strickland.
The original assignment was for $35,000, but Strickland's office ended up paying attorney Alex Shumate $49,275 because of the workload and volume of legislative research, Wurst said.
"They were hired because of the volume of legislative language and research that was necessary," Wurst said.
It’s a foundation built upon five pillars that will grow our economy and make this new century another American century: new rules for Wall Street that will reward drive and innovation; new investments in education that will make our workforce more skilled and competitive; new investments in renewable energy and technology that will create new jobs and industries; new investments in health care that will cut costs for families and businesses; and new savings in our federal budget that will bring down the debt for future generations. That is the new foundation we must build. That must be our future – and my Administration’s policies are designed to achieve that future.Back on March 10th, the White House released the following:
[President Obama] proposed five pillars of reform:One might wonder where the President became so enthralled with using 'Five Pillars' as a tool to promote his agenda...well, a quick googling will fix that right up.
1) "Investing in early childhood initiatives" like Head Start;
2) "Encouraging better standards and assessments" by focusing on testing itineraries that better fit our kids and the world they live in;
3) "Recruiting, preparing, and rewarding outstanding teachers" by giving incentives for a new generation of teachers and for new levels of excellence from all of our teachers.
4) "Promoting innovation and excellence in America’s schools" by supporting charter schools, reforming the school calendar and the structure of the school day.
5) "Providing every American with a quality higher education--whether it's college or technical training."
Now, I'm not one for black helicopter and conspiracy theories, but you'd imagine these two speeches were vetted pretty thoroughly. And during this vetting you'd also imagine someone would notice that the President was evoking Islamic references to encourage Americans to buy-in to his agenda.
Five pillars? On two different occasions?
I'm not sayin'. I'm just sayin'.
The blogosphere is up in arms this morning, and rightly so, about a new report released from the Department of Homeland Security. The report is full of inflammatory statements, including:
Rightwing extremism in the United States can be broadly divided into those groups, movements, and adherents that are primarily hate-oriented (based on hatred of particular religious, racial or ethnic groups), and those that are mainly antigovernment, rejecting federal authority in favor of state or local authority, or rejecting government authority entirely. It may include groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration.Rejecting federal authority in favor of state authority? You mean federalism?
Yeah. Only idiots prefer state over federal authority.
Furthermore, how just is it to lump hate groups in with those of the political right? Racism existed long before the Republican and Democratic parties, and it's existed in both parties since.
Just ask Senator Byrd.
For more on this, check out Michelle Malkin's blog.
Monday, April 13, 2009
We are now concerned about an ongoing threat to public education in the District of Columbia and hope that you will use your voice to help eliminate this threat. Specifically, we urge you to call on Congress to end the District of Columbia pilot voucher program as scheduled this year and to oppose any efforts to extend this ineffective program.A threat? Really?
Well it turns out, despite a report from the US Department of Education stating the program's success, and despite Obama's Secretary of Education supporting the DC Voucher system, the President still wants to bow down to the NEA in a fashion that would make the Saudi King blush.
Obama hates poor people. Really. He does. If you don't believe it then the only other option is that the NEA controls his education policy. There is just no better way to describe this:
Officials who manage the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program sent letters this week to parents notifying them that the scholarships of up to $7,500, were being rescinded because of the decision by the Education Department. Citing the political uncertainty surrounding vouchers, a spokesperson for Mr. Duncan told us that it is not in the best interest of students and their parents to enroll them in a program that may end a year from now. Congress conditioned funding beyond the 2009-10 school year on reauthorization by Congress and approval by the D.C. Council. By presuming the program dead -- and make no mistake, that's the insidious effect of his bar on new enrollment -- Mr. Duncan makes it even more difficult for the program to get the fair hearing it deserves.Taking scholarships away from kids even though they have another year to use them? Seriously?
That's not to mention the impact of the last-minute decision on these families. Many of the public charter schools already have cut off enrollments for the upcoming school year; the deadline for out-of-boundary transfers for the public schools has passed. No doubt Mr. Duncan is right about possible disruption for new students if the program were to end. But scholarship officials have been upfront with parents about the risks, and the decision really should be theirs. Let them decide whether they want to chance at least one year in a high-quality private school versus the crapshoot of D.C. public schools.
For posterity's sake, let's briefly go over the main reasons the NEA uses to support being rid of the DC School Choice program.
- A 2007 U.S. Government Accountability Office report found pervasive administrative and accountability problems.
- The program supports private schools that do not charge tuition and schools that use unqualified teachers - some do not have even bachelor's degrees.
- In 2008, a study by the Department of Education found that students in the D.C. voucher program generally did no better on reading and math tests after two years than their public school peers.
Make no mistake -- if Obama wanted to keep this unquestionably successful and inexpensive program, he could use his influence in Congress to ensure it continues. But he isn't.
America, is this the change you've been looking for?
We're trying to gather whatever advice we can do as well as you all did during the past eight years.
Suggestions already made by some cohorts include:
- Postpone college classes so professors can attend
- "Hey Hey! Ho Ho! IQ points have got to go!"
- Bring literature that explains your point of view.
- Seek out foreign sponsorship. [courtesy of A.N.S.W.E.R.]
- Make sure you have a lot of posters promoting the event taped to street signs that people will see for months to come.
- Make sure your greatest minds are present.
- Showers are for the weak.
- If there's more than 50 people there, go ahead and call it a million man march.
- Bring a mainstream, populist message.
- Don't forget to take a vaction day at work....er....uh....nevermind....we don't work.
- Bring condoms.
- See those police? They absolutely hate getting their shoes tied together.
- Bring ugly women.
- Learn from our mistakes. Use accurate spelling on your signs.
- Pants are optional. So are morals.
According to The Hill newspaper:
Democrats and Republicans will do their best to spin a win by venture capitalist Scott Murphy (D) or Assemblyman Jim Tedisco (R) as having broad national meanings. But political observers and analysts have largely drawn the conclusion that such a razor-thin election can only be seen as a draw.To this I have one thing to say.
Just a little less than 5 months previous to the special election, a Democrat won NY-20 by more than 70,000 votes.
Now we can agree that a draw in this circumstance means, plainly speaking, nothing changed.
Well, can someone let me know when 70,000 came to equal 25?
The fact is, results drastically changed since the last election in the district. But one thing didn't change -- the electorate.
Many want to prop up the difference between the number of registered Republicans and Democrats in the District -- but that difference was there on Nov4 when the Democrat Congresswoman won by 70,000 votes and Barack Obama won by almost 10,000 votes.
And that margin is now statistically down to zero.
A draw? I don't think so.
A message has been sent. Many just don't want to hear it.
If it seems as if every time a cable television news show cuts to commercial, some group with a vague but noble-sounding name wants you to urge your congressman or senator to support or oppose part of President Barack Obama’s agenda, you are probably right.To give you some perspective, Obama spent $310 million on television advertising for his ENTIRE CAMPAIGN -- that's over one year. These interest groups have almost equaled that in less than 3 months.
Television viewers are being deluged by so-called issue ads paid for by corporations, unions, advocacy groups and individuals who have spent a whopping $270 million just since Obama took the oath of office, according to data provided to POLITICO by the Campaign Media Analysis Group.
It’s an unprecedented clip, experts say, a breakneck pace that could yield more than $1 billion in issue ad buys before the end of the year.
And you thought you were gonna get a break, eh?
Sunday, April 12, 2009
I also wanted to take a timeout from politics to share with you a good column shared in my Church's bulletin this morning. Hope you all have a great Easter!
As we celebrate Easter Sunday, let’s take a look at the first man to walk into the empty tomb. Peter must have come to the tomb with many different feelings swirling in his heart—ranging from unspeakable hope that Jesus was alive again to oppressive guilt at having denied him.
Seeing those linens neatly folded, Peter must have recalled his own actions that helped bring Jesus to such a horrible end. “First I bragged about my undying loyalty to him, and then I denied ever knowing him. If he really has been raised up, I have to face him. I’m such a coward and a traitor; will he take me back?” While Peter’s view was so negative, Jesus had a different approach. He looked inside Peter’s heart and saw the love as well as the weakness. He knew that Peter had denied him only out of fear.
Try to imagine the first conversation between Peter and the risen Lord. “Why do you put up with me, Lord? I failed you!” “Peter, that’s all in the past now. I know your heart, and I know your love. When the Spirit comes, you will be strengthened beyond what you can imagine. So be at peace. I want you to feed my sheep.”
Surely we all have more than a little bit of Peter in us! Like him, we too have made boastful statements about our lives or about our faith. And we too have been embarrassed when reality confronted these claims.
So let’s give up all of our negative views of ourselves. After all, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31). Instead, let’s listen to Jesus as he tells us that he knows how much we love him—and as he tells us how much he loves us. Let’s allow these words of encouragement to move us into the world to feed his sheep. May God bless you this Easter.
Saturday, April 11, 2009
We all know the legend of Mr. Soze. And in the face of the current pirate crisis, don't we want someone who will make sure Americans are never embarrassed or taken advantage of again?
We need the Soze Doctrine:
"He goes after the rest of the mob. He kills their wives, he kills their parents and their parents' friends. He burns down the houses they live in and the stores they work in, he kills people that owe them money. And like that he was gone." - Verbal Kint
Come on, America. Join the movement.
Make the world afraid to ever mess with us again.
President Obama's lack of quick and decisive action in dealing with the pirate/terrorist/hostage crisis shows that he likely wants to prove he can deal with thugs in a diplomatic way.
He wants to make this crisis a microcosm of showing the world that he represents a new way of doing things.
How will we know he succeeded? There are two necessary outputs.
- The American hostage must be returned unharmed without any action taken by our military.
- There must be a noticeable decrease in pirating and hostage taking.
As for the second, that may prove to be more difficult. A vital requirement to encourage a decrease in pirating is providing a deterrent. Diplomatic solutions tend to only encourage dangerous behavior. This morning's taking of the American-owned tugboat seems to enhance that notion.
Here it is, Mr. President. Prove you're a transcendent figure. The world is watching.
Friday, April 10, 2009
There is a vocal minority that seems to think Kasich is drastically hurting his chances at winning the Governor's race in 572 days by not announcing his official candidacy yet.
While I do agree that he is missing some important time to raise money, the earned media he is receiving with appearances on Fox and hosting the O'Reilly Factor expands his profile among the millions of conservatives the network reaches. This increased national profile will only be a benefit to him when it comes time to start raising money.
Not to mention the thousands of conservative Ohioans that tune in to Fox News.
Consider this among the multitude of other reasons why Kasich's waiting game is going to pay off.
There have been crates of articles covering President Obama’s foreign policy blunders. Rarely by the mainstream media, of course, but by independent and web authors. For the first time though, I think this ineptitude is hitting home for the American people. The Somali pirate crisis (no, its not just an issue, there are American lives at stake, hence CRISIS), added to the events of this past week, show the lack of backbone or willingness to use a ‘big stick’ in this administration.
Starting with the President's Europe trip, his speeches were European in style and policy. He's a true political chameleon, but we already knew that from observing his transition from Senator to Candidate to President Obama. He may be the first president go out of his way to avoid putting our nation first. When he discussed the past administration on his trip he was quoted as saying:
“America has shown arrogance and been dismissive, even derisive.”Instead of recognizing US citizens that have given their lives to save European countries, he appears to hold contempt for his country on foreign soil.
Unapologetic, submissive, liberal diplomacy.
Instead of restoring America’s standing on the world stage, he has humiliated his own country. Apologizing to Europe for the Iraq war? Why? Just to gain political favor? This falls in line with what Obama told his supporters he would do: improve relations with foreign countries to accomplish larger goals. But look at the results -- no additional NATO combat troops for Afghanistan from mainland Europe and a deafening silence from other countries now involved in the hostage crisis.
We have a military. We have a special forces trained for these kinds of situations.
But we see the President doing nothing. I am not abdicating a full-scale invasion and mitigation of another civil war in the least, but targeted strikes using our supposed international intelligence community would be a big win for Obama and the families of those held hostage, and America.
These pirates are economically motivated, as terrorists are politically motivated, but I am sure terrorists view (and are told) the pirates are winning great battles against the United States. Similar to the now-Hollywood imbued knowledge that Afghanis did not know that it was the US who saved them from the Soviets, the lack of information in the middle east could turn this crisis into a different monster that affects more than just a few American families.
My heart and prayers go out to these families.
UPDATE (from DJ Tablesauce): Latest word is that the pirates are demanding $2 million for the American hostage.
Ok, here's the plan:
- Give them the money.
- Get our hostage.
- Blow them to all hell.
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Gov. Mark Sanford of South Carolina, who is not running for re-election, went on the air to defend his stance on rejecting a portion of the stimulus funds. If this isn't throwing viral red meat to conservatives, I don't know what is...
And it's also a damn good idea.
UPDATE: I'm a big fan of Jim Geraghty's Campaign Spot, but his analysis of the ad has it completely wrong.
Yes, the style is a bit like a campaign ad — Sanford's extremely soft-spoken — but it's not like the governor doesn't have good reason to take to the airwaves and explain his position, a stance that Democrats want to portray as cruel and heartless.Unfortunately, Jim doesn't directly explain what that reason is. Could this ad possibly convince some South Carolinians that Sanford is making the right decision about rejecting some of the funds? Sure. But what effect would that have on anything? He doesn't need public support to do what he's doing. He has every right as Governor to reject the funds. Is it really worth 230k in distribution + production costs for an ad with no direct benefit? Sorry Jim, but politicians don't make moves like this on principle. It just doesn't happen.
The other thing is, this ad is only running in South Carolina. And you have to figure that if Sanford were to run, he would have the state wrapped up anyway.Now here is where Jim is being particularly shortsighted. First, this assumes the spot was made just for South Carolinians. It wasn't. Sanford knew this ad would go viral on popular conservative websites. And it did. Conservative bloggers and their commenters are talking about it, and that is a good thing for Mark Sanford. These are the kinds of people you want to influence when you're 3 years out from the next Presidential primary. Hell, Jim...just the fact that you and the rest of NRO are talking about it proves the point.
Second, remember in 2008 how many campaign ads we saw on youtube that never made the television airwaves? The point of these ads was to help shape the message and give people something to talk about. This is the same kind of thing.
Finally, and built upon the previous two points, lately conservative activists have heard a lot about Sanford being one of the next great hopes. We've heard about what he stands for and what he's doing for South Carolina -- but many have never heard or seen him speak. This was an introduction to those activists. It provided them an opportunity to see a serious conservative communicating on a serious issue. Was it necessarily inspiring? No, but the topic doesn't warrant grand eloquence.
Sorry, Jim. But I've gotta disagree with you on this one.
It's a campaign ad.
The Pew Research Center reported last week that President Barack Obama "has the most polarized early job approval of any president" since surveys began tracking this 40 years ago. The gap between Mr. Obama's approval rating among Democrats (88%) and Republicans (27%) is 61 points. This "approval gap" is 10 points bigger than George W. Bush's at this point in his presidency, despite Mr. Bush winning a bitterly contested election.Now if you shared that paragraph with any Obama fan, they likely would shoot back with something like, "this can only be blamed on Republicans -- all they can do is say no -- Obama is the only one actually looking out for everyday Americans." But is that really the case?
Look at the record. He froze Republicans out of the debate on the stimulus and the budget. He's personally gone after conservatives like Rush, Eric Cantor, Palin and most recently played the blame game with George W. Bush.
This is where in response, an Obama fan would deflect the argument to identify Bush as an even worse character when he entered office.
But take an honest look at W's record upon his inauguration:
Among his first appointments were Democratic judicial nominees who had been blocked by Republicans under President Bill Clinton. The Bush White House joined with Democratic and Republican leaders to draft education reform legislation. And Mr. Bush worked with Republican Chuck Grassley to cut a deal with Democrat Max Baucus to win bipartisan passage of a big tax cut in a Senate split 50-50 after the 2000 election.But does Obama have anything to worry about? Absofrickinlutely.
On both Mr. Obama's performance and policies, independents are starting to look more like Republicans. For example, the most recent Fox News poll (taken March 31 to April 1) found that Mr. Obama's job approval among independents has fallen to 52%, down nine points from the start of March and down 12 points from late January. Over the same period, the number of independents who disapprove of Mr. Obama's performance has doubled to 32% from 16%.If that Obama supporter isn't sweating a little bit by now, he should be.
The same poll also found that 76% of independents worry that government will spend too much to help the economy; only 12% worry it will spend too little. Independents oppose Mr. Obama's proposed budget by a 55%-37% margin.
Click here for video. Seriously. Do it.
Taricani: Ma’am, I wanted to ask you about the police charging you with cyberstalking.
Bruno: [adorns a giant bunny head and dances around]
Hear those crickets? That means there aren't any.
But that apparently hasn't stopped many from thinking it's a good idea.
According to one of the best pollsters out there, only 53% of Americans believe capitalism is better than socialism.
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey found that 20% disagree and say socialism is better. Twenty-seven percent (27%) are not sure which is better.Fortunately, this last paragraph means most of 3BP's readers aren't idiots. Though you have to wonder what Republican could ever consider socialism superior to capitalism.
Adults under 30 are essentially evenly divided: 37% prefer capitalism, 33% socialism, and 30% are undecided. Thirty-somethings are a bit more supportive of the free-enterprise approach with 49% for capitalism and 26% for socialism. Adults over 40 strongly favor capitalism, and just 13% of those older Americans believe socialism is better.
There is a partisan gap as well. Republicans - by an 11-to-1 margin - favor capitalism. Democrats are much more closely divided: Just 39% say capitalism is better while 30% prefer socialism. As for those not affiliated with either major political party, 48% say capitalism is best, and 21% opt for socialism.
An important observation is that Rasmussen didn't define the differences/histories of capitalism versus socialism. I'd like to think this was on purpose so as to determine Americans' basic understanding of economic systems. I'd imagine explaining the complexities of each would have been damn near impossible in this kind of poll.
What does that mean? Three things.
- Too many Americans don't properly understand the positives and negatives of both systems.
- Academia and the media have not adequately defined and challenged those that support socialism.
- Many of our leaders, in an effort to amass power, have demagogued the economic debate.
Help everyday Americans better understand that the economic system that made our country great isn't out of date.
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
hey! just wanted to drop a quick line and say hi and congrats on being named best state political blog by The Fix!!
all the best,
Lauren B. Goode
Fisher for Ohio
Please contribute today at www.fisherforohio.com!
But it seems Jennifer Brunner's troubles aren't over. The same woman castigated over last election's Golden Week fiasco and a multitude of voter fraud cases now has found herself 44 years behind times.
Ohio appears to be violating a federal mandate by not automatically updating voter registrations when residents change the address on their driver's licenses, according to the final report from two elections summits.This makes me wonder one thing...
That makes it more difficult for counties and the state to maintain up-to-date voter-registration lists, contributing to the relatively high number of provisional ballots cast in Ohio and other problems, the report said.
Norden pointed out that the National Voting Rights Act of 1965 says that any change of address on a driver's license shall serve as a notice to automatically update a voter's registration, unless he or she says the change is not for voting purposes.
WHAT IN THE HELL ARE YOU DOING OVER THERE?!?!
I'm sorry, Jennifer. I don't mean to yell. But honestly, your job is to make sure Ohio's elections are run properly. I'd imagine one of the highest priorities would be making sure the voting rolls aren't obnoxiously inaccurate.
What are you doing instead?
Squat. Your lack of action is providing ample opportunity for double-votes, identity theft, and election fraud in general.
Secretary Brunner is running for the U.S. Senate. She'll likely win the nomination and have all the cash she needs to face Rob Portman.
I just hope she runs on her record.
Expect increased coverage of the upcoming Governor's race as things continue to heat up.
In the meantime, will someone please lean underneath Gov. Strickland's desk and let him know we're coming for him.
Check it out. We've reached James Bond Villain level, folks.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The president's new science adviser said Wednesday that global warming is so dire, the Obama administration is discussing radical technologies to cool Earth's air.I couldn't help but visit the way-back machine to my youth when I read this. Weather manipulation? This is soooo the plot from GI Joe: The Revenge of Cobra. The plot:
John Holdren told The Associated Press in his first interview since being confirmed last month that the idea of geoengineering the climate is being discussed. One such extreme option includes shooting pollution particles into the upper atmosphere to reflect the sun's rays. Holdren said such an experimental measure would only be used as a last resort.
"It's got to be looked at," he said. "We don't have the luxury of taking any approach off the table."
In this film, Cobra is at it again. This time, they have a device called the Weather Dominator which can control the world's weather and use it as a devastating weapon. Now the Joe team must find a way to fight Cobra when they seem to have the very elements at their command.
But, in all seriousness, the White House is once again shamefully utilizing the 'crisis' canard. They did it with the stimulus, with the budget and time and time again as they've rolled out their policy agenda. It's making me wonder if they even know what a crisis really is.
President Obama, you can only cry wolf so many times.
No, really. They are.
Somali pirates hijacked a U.S.-flagged, Danish-owned container ship on Wednesday with 20 American crew on board in a major escalation in attacks at sea off the Horn of Africa nation, officials said.I know, I know...calling them 'pirates' almost makes them sound quaint. But don't make any mistake, these guys are terrorists. And the President is sleeping through it.
Andrew Mwangura, coordinator of the Mombasa-based East African Seafarers' Assistance Program, told Reuters the 17,000 ton Maersk Alabama had been seized off Mogadishu far out in the Indian Ocean, but all its crew were believed to be unharmed.
UPDATE: The Americans took their ship back. Makes me think of this:
In other words, she isn't running for the Alaskan Senate seat against Lisa Murkowski.
Many seemed to think after the election that moving into the elder body of the U.S. Congress would be the best move for her -- providing a chance to develop and show off the foreign policy chops some think harmed her in '08.
I disagree. She should maintain her role, building her reputation as a successful executive in the face of a tough political atmosphere -- quietly establishing her record so there is no question of positive results as Governor come 2012. She can satisfy the national conservative base by feeding them one of the red meat issues they crave -- energy.
"Drill baby, drill" has vanished from our nomenclature since the last campaign season. It resonated for a reason, and engaged conservatives haven't detached from energy as a major issue simply because gas prices aren't $4 a gallon. Palin, just as before, has the moral high ground to speak directly towards the net benefits of increased drilling. If she can develop a unique and viable policy towards increased use of nuclear power, she can show her chops as a policy wonk, enthuse the conservative base and most importantly, do the right thing.
Finally, and not to be overlooked, the last poll taken in Alaska showed higher favoribility ratings for Murkowski than Palin. If the Governor wants to continue her career in politics, she obviously can't risk losing a Senate race.
It's a shame. I suppose I'll have to admire from afar.
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
Polls Finds More OptimismBut what good is a poll if the sample is skewed? To me, the two most interesting questions of this poll had nothing to do with approval rating or direction of the country. Instead, it was the questions asking 'who did you vote for?'(43 Obama-25 McCain) and 'what Party do you affiliate yourself with?' (39D-23R-30I).
Americans have grown more optimistic about the economy and the direction of the country in the 11 weeks since President Obama was inaugurated, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll.
"Fully two-thirds said they approved of his overall job performance. By contrast, just 31 percent of respondents said they had a favorable view of the Republican Party, the lowest in the 25 years the question has been asked" in the poll.
While I can understand Party affiliation fluctuating over time, this poll seems to go to the extreme in their sample. I accept that there are fewer Republicans than Democrats, but 16 percent fewer than the D's and less than 1/4 of the population?
What is particularly telling is the 'who did you vote for' number. As we all know, the election was much closer than the 43-25 differential that this poll provided. There are few numbers in politics that are stable, but the ultimate poll of the nation comes every four years. If you want to properly gauge Americans, wouldn't it be more effective to fit your sample around how they actually aligned themselves?
With such skewing, why should we even bother paying attention to these numbers?
The former President never really seemed to get the credit he deserved for a program he first initiated in 2003, and had renewed in 2007, to treat those infected with HIV on the African continent.
But now a study has been released that helps us understand the real-life impact of what he really accomplished.
CHICAGO (Reuters) - A U.S. program launched during the Bush administration has cut AIDS deaths by 10 percent in targeted African nations compared to their neighbors and saved more than a million lives, U.S. researchers said on Monday.One million people.
Africans. HIV patients. All for less than 10% of what we gave to AIG.
One million people.
Thanks, W., for understanding the value of human life.
h/t: Petr Weifen
Monday, April 6, 2009
We suck at giving things.
First it was DVDs.
Then an iPod.
Now we've donated the diplomatic equivalent of a fairly nice bottle of port to the earthquake relief effort in Italy.
The United States said Monday it would donate 50,000 dollars in emergency aid to Italy after a powerful earthquake killed at least 100 people.Also delivered were a gorgeous bouquet of freshly picked lilies and a "Sorry All Your Medieval Buildings Were Destroyed" hallmark card.
President Barack Obama earlier offered his condolences on a visit to Turkey and voiced hope that the United States could send rescuers.
The earthquake killed at least 100 people and injured 1,500 more as it reduced medieval buildings to rubble in the central town of L'Aquila.
50 grand? Seriously? This is so frickin' embarrassing.
UPDATE: An aftershock of 5.1 magnitude was just felt in Italy. Obama just sent them a Home Depot two-for-one coupon.