Wednesday, July 31, 2013

INTERVIEW: Senator Mike Lee, Rush Limbaugh and Defunding ObamaCare

RUSH: We're happy to welcome to our program Senator Mike Lee from Utah. He's gonna bring us up-to-date on his effort here to lead the Republican Party in the Senate to attempting to defund Obamacare.  Senator, welcome.  Great to have you here.

LEE:  Thank you, Rush.  It's a pleasure to be with you.

RUSH:  Tell me and everybody else what you're trying to do because there are now people saying what you want to do can't be done because so much of the spending is locked in.  I've read no, that's not true.  And then, second question, I remain perplexed.  I mean, you got a majority of the American people that oppose this, and I don't see the Republican Party trying to connect with them, outside of you and a couple others.  So a lot of this doesn't make any sense to a whole lot of people.

LEE:  That's right, it doesn't make any sense to a whole lot of people outside the Washington Beltway.  You see, inside the Washington Beltway, this discussion is controversial.  Outside the Beltway, Obamacare is universally despised.  This is an issue, Rush, that is no longer just about Republican versus Democrat.  It's no longer about liberal versus conservative.  This is about Washington, DC, versus everyone else.  This law is despised because it's gonna make our health care unaffordable.  It's also going to make health care unfair, because the president has said he's gonna hold hardworking Americans to the line and punish them if they don't comply with the law's exacting demands, but he's gonna give a big carve-out for Big Business.  Big Business doesn't have to comply.  The American people shouldn't have to put up with it. The president said he's not ready to implement the law. We shouldn't fund it.

RUSH:  When you say Big Business doesn't have to comply, you're talking about the one-year waiver on the employer mandate?

LEE:  That's correct.  The president's selectively enforcing the law in a way that he doesn't have the authority to do.
RUSH:  Isn't that a tantamount admission that the law's punitive and he doesn't want it to be punitive going into an election?

LEE:  Yes.  It's punitive, so he looked at that aspect of the law that is the most unpopular with those who can afford lobbyists, the most unpopular with those who have contacts that can get into the White House and get an audience, and so that's what he's doing, is he's throwing this bone out there so that he doesn't get attacked as much within the business community and the lobbyist community.  Meanwhile, he's throwing the rest of us out into this wasteland that is the world of Obamacare.

RUSH:  Well, maybe you can help some of us understand.  Even if the Republican Party does not want to be identified or known as a conservative party, they still are an opposition party.  I don't understand why they're not, even if they believe that what you want to do can't be done, why not make a stand?  Why not stand up and say, "This is who we are. This is what we're for.  This is why this is bad.  This is why we want to repeal it for you." There's a majority of the American people waiting to be connected with.  Why this capitulation with the Democrats, Senator?

LEE:  The fact that that question is so difficult to answer is itself a great source of frustration to me, because, look, we have a majority of the representatives in the House and a sizeable plurality of the senators who are against Obamacare, have been since day one.  In the House they voted 39, 40, 41 times to repeal it.  So those of us who say we're against it, those of you who recognize this law's going to be bad for the American people, ought to be willing to stand up and say, "You know, one of the few powers that we still guard jealously within Congress is the power of the purse."  We should simply refuse to fund Obamacare.  We want to fund the rest of government, just not Obamacare.

The Rest of the Interview:

Sheila Jackson Lee is a Racist and a complete Idiot.

Bad news for America: we’re facing a serious deficit of crazyiness Insane Democrats used to fill the aisles, as James Traficant, Alan Grayson and Cynthia McKinney fought aliens, anti-psychotic meds and the voices in their heads. But sadly elections have taken their toll on the dumbest and craziest congressmen. Now we’ve only got David Wu and Sheila Jackson-Lee to kick around.

Sheila Jackson-Lee might be the dumbest person in congress. She might even be the dumbest person outside congress. If there were ever a global championship for idiots, the country could send her there. And leave her there; because unlike Lassie, she wouldn’t be able find her way back on her own.

When Enron wanted someone to use as a puppet, they picked Sheila Jackson-Lee. They wanted a woman who didn’t have a mind of her own. Enron executives described her as “agreeable”, which was a polite way of saying, “dumber than a bunch of rocks caught in the hubcaps of a slow bus going the wrong way on a one way street in the middle of a flood.”

Jackson-Lee’s only qualification for sitting on the Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics was the space between her ears. She visited JPL and asked if the Mars Rover would be able to show “the flag the astronauts planted there before”. Staffers were reportedly surprised that she didn’t complain about cost overruns on the Death Star.

In February, Congress was debating federal spending. And Sheila Jackson-Lee got up to make her contribution denouncing a Pepsi commercial as racist. Other things that Jackson-Lee has denounced as racist include hurricanes, a balanced budget and secret service agents. Crying “Racism” is actually her only life skill.

In 2003, Sheila Jackson-Lee complained that hurricane names were too “lilly white” and said that “All racial groups should be represented.” She suggested Hurricanes “Keisha, Jamal and Deshawn”.

Last year, Lee tried to denounce the Tea Party as racist at an NAACP meeting, but in the middle of it she forgot the word for sheets, and condemned them for wearing, “uh, clothing with a name.”  Which is exactly how most of the rest of Congress refers to her.

Not only has Jackson-Lee voted against every national security measure she could think of, but she actually goes out looking for dictators to support. She  invited Assad to speak in Texas, urged F-16 parts sales to Hugo Chavez, called for an end to economic sanctions against Saddam and participated in an event conducted by an Iranian regime front group against military action on Iran. She might be considered a walking security risk, if she actually knew anything.

Last last year she got up on the House floor to celebrate the victory in Vietnam and the “two Vietnams, side by side, North and South.”

There probably isn’t a single member of congress less fit to understand how the government works or what her duties are. Jackson-Lee opposed repealing Obamacare because that would violate the Fifth Amendment’s right to Due Process. An Amendment that had so little to do with the topic at hand that she might as well have picked it by throwing a dart at the Bill of Rights. In one sentence, she proved that she had never read the Bill of Rights and had no idea what Due Process even means.

Read More about this Racist Fool: Frontpage Mag

Is Chicago the Next Detroit?

So it turns out the president's home city of Chicago (D-IL) is suffering through a bit of fiscal trouble:
Mayor Rahm Emanuel closed the books on 2012 with $33.4 million in unallocated cash on hand — down from $167 million the year before — while adding to the mountain of debt piled on Chicago taxpayers, year-end audits show. Last week, Moody’s Investors ordered an unprecedented triple-drop in the city’s bond rating, citing Chicago’s “very large and growing” pension liabilities, “significant” debt service payments, “unrelenting public safety demands” and historic reluctance to raise local taxes that has continued under Emanuel.

Those unprecedented downgrades were delivered despite what the Sun-Times describes as Mayor Rahm Emanuel's "aggressive cost-cutting measures."  Long-term unfunded promises and the costs of servicing the city's debt are swamping shorter-term attempts at fiscal restraint.  Absent significant reforms, this is America's future, too.  More on that eye-opening triple downgrade, directly from the credit ratings agency:

Moody's Investors Service has downgraded the City of Chicago's (IL) general obligation (GO) and sales tax ratings to A3 from Aa3; water and sewer senior lien revenue ratings to A1 from Aa2; and water and sewer second lien revenue ratings to A2 from Aa3. Chicago has $7.7 billion of GO debt, $566 million of sales tax debt, $2.0 billion of water revenue debt, and $1.3 billion of sewer revenue debt outstanding. The outlook on all ratings is negative ...The downgrade of the GO rating reflects Chicago's very large and growing pension liabilities and accelerating budget pressures associated with those liabilities. The city's budgetary flexibility is already burdened by high fixed costs, including unrelenting public safety demands and significant debt service payments.

Moody's reference to "unrelenting public safety demands" is in part a euphemism for Chicago's appalling murder and violent crime crisis, which manages to remain alarmingly acute despite the city's strict anti-gun laws.  Strange, that.  Oh, did I say triple downgrade?  I meant quadruple, and this one genuinely hurts The Children:
Chicago's public schools on Wednesday forecast a record $1 billion fiscal 2014 budget deficit despite layoffs of 1,000 teachers and the expected closing of 50 schools, prompting one credit agency to downgrade its debt rating. The nation's third-largest public school district blamed the mounting red ink on an expected sharp rise in annual pension payments for teachers, because the state of Illinois has failed to curb ballooning pension costs.

For years, Illinois teachers unions negotiated unsustainable contracts with their Democratic buddies, who run the city and state -- a vicious cycle that is has begun its inevitable meltdown.  The obligations owed to these government employees are consuming the city's budget, prompting desperate bouts of austerity cuts -- which are now unavoidable.  To paraphrase one of the city's prominent citizens, Chicago's fiscal recklessness is comin' home to roost.

Read More: Town Hall 

Sign the petition and tell Congress: Don't Fund Obamacare!

On October 1st, millions of Americans will be required to enroll in Obamacare and could lose access to their doctors and be forced to pay higher premiums and higher taxes. But there's still time to stop it. Republicans in Congress can stop Obamacare if they refuse to fund it.

Sign the petition and tell Congress: Don't Fund Obamacare!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Pres Obama has bad news for blacks.

If you knew nothing else about President Obama other than looking at the data, you might conclude that he was insensitive to blacks, given that they have done far worse economically under his administration than Hispanics or whites. 

What is striking is that the president and his advisers still seem to be clueless about which economic policies work and which don’t work. Despite his (at least for this week) emphasis on the economy, he persists in being the anti-Reagan, with anti-growth policies. In his speech in Illinois, the president came up with no new pro-growth proposals, just more of what has not worked.

President Reagan reduced the maximum tax rate on job creators by 60 percent; Mr. Obama increased the maximum tax rate on job creators by 17 percent. 

Reagan cut non-defense, discretionary, federal government spending by a third as a percentage of gross domestic product; Mr. Obama has increased it. 

Reagan cut government regulations while Mr. Obama has greatly increased them.
The results are:

Under Reagan, adult black unemployment fell by 20 percent, but under Mr. Obama, it has increased by 42 percent.

Black teenage unemployment fell by 16 percent under Reagan, but has risen by 56 percent under Mr. Obama.

The increase in unemployment rates has been far worse for blacks under Mr. Obama than for whites and Hispanics.

Inflation-adjusted real incomes are slightly higher for Hispanics and whites than they were in 2008, but are lower for blacks.

The labor force participation rate has fallen for all groups, but remains far lower for blacks than for whites and Hispanics.

Most people, when confronted with the evidence presented above, probably would realize that they had been mistaken and then try a set of policies that were successful in the past. Not Mr. Obama. Given the tenor of his most recent talks, he seems to be intent on doubling down on his own failed policies.

Read More: The Washington Times

Richard W. Rahn is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute and chairman of the Institute for Global Economic Growth.

If Detroit is Bankrupt how are they going to pay for the New Hockey Arena?

Detroit’s current financial situation is infamous. With a bankrupt government, a stalling economy, and one of the highest unemployment rates in the nation, the city is under control of a governor-appointed emergency manager. Clearly, the city budget is in need of stringent reorganization to escape these circumstances and help the city onto a sustainable economic path. In a curious and insulting move, Detroit has chosen to use precious state funding to finance a new, $444 million hockey arena.

While Detroit’s emergency manager, Kevyn Orr, claims that the project is “part of the economic development … If it is as productive as it's supposed to be, that's going to be a boon to the city," its real benefits will likely be tepid at best. Even if there are vast benefits from the investment, the ramifications of cutting spending elsewhere to fund it will outweigh its profits. And any profits that are made will not come soon enough to assuage the dire economic hardships that Detroit and its citizens are facing today.

Because of spending cuts and layoffs in the Detroit Police Department, officers take an average of one hour to respond to a situation. Needless to say, the city’s safety isn’t enhanced by the fact that 40% of its streetlights have been shut down indefinitely.

Read More: Policy Mic

The New Film on Terry McAuliffe by Breitbart

From chief fundraiser for the Democratic Party to the Clintons' right hand man, McAuliffe has profited from being at the center of power. In this 30-minute documentary, Fast Terry exposes how McAuliffe’s politically motivated business decisions and empty promises have had a negative impact on the lives of Americans from Franklin, Virginia to Tunica, Mississippi and is now tied to a federal investigation by the Department of Homeland Security.

We invite you to watch the trailer for the film below, and visit for more information. 

The Trailer:

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Worst President in Modern Times?

The Wall Street Journal published a lead editorial one that responded harshly to President Barack Obama's new series of economic speeches. "The President called his speech 'A Better Bargain for the Middle Class,' but no President has done worse by the middle class in modern times," the editorial noted. 

The article went on to highlight several key areas in which the Obama presidency has harmed middle-class Americans.

The economy has become more unequal under Obama. "For four and a half years, Mr. Obama has focused his policies on reducing inequality rather than increasing growth," the Journal notes. "The predictable result has been more inequality and less growth." The rich have done well; the middle class has struggled.

Middle class incomes have fallen under Obama. The Journal points out that median real household income has fallen by 5%--not just since the start of the recession under George W. Bush, but also since the start of the economy recovery in 2009, for which Obama and the Democrats have often claimed sole credit.

The administration has constantly failed to meet promises of faster growth. Contrary to Obama's cherry-picked statistics in his recent speech, the Journal reminds readers that the Obama recovery is "one of the weakest on record," despite repeated rosy projections by the White House and the media of fast growth. 

Obama has made entitlements are a drag on the middle class. The Journal focuses on ObamaCare, which has hurt job creation and created uncertainty. It could have also mentioned the failing state of Social Security and Medicare, which Obama has failed to reform, and the future cost of Obama's staggering debt.

Even Obama's few pro-growth initiatives are not serious. Despite the Journal's early, enthusiastic support for immigration reform as an engine for expansion, the authors of the editorial finally admit: "we're not sure [Obama] wants even that to pass...he may be setting it up to use as a campaign wedge in 2014."

Well Said: Breitbart

Some are Wise and Some are Otherwise. Obama hasn't learned a thing.

“As a country, we’re older and we’re wiser,” President Obama declared in a speech in Galesburg, Illinois.  He’s certainly older.  But on the basis of this speech bristling with tired ideas he’s trotted out time and time again, Obama himself is anything but wiser.    

A quick read turns up false and misleading claims, pious promises, and statements that mean nothing.  “I will engage the American people in this debate” over America’s future, he said.  Not with this boring, forgettable speech, he won’t.  Somebody at the White House needs to tell truth to power:  Mr. Obama, no one takes your speeches seriously any more.

He says he’s “challenging CEOs…to hire more Americans.”  By boosting their cost of doing business by imposing Obamacare?  Thanks to the president, CEOs are hiring more…more part-time workers, that is.
“I care about one thing and one thing only, and that’s how to use every minute of the 1,276 days remaining in my term to make this country work for working Americans again,” he said.  This begs the question: What have you been doing for the past four-and-one-half years?

In the dubious claims department, Obama laid it on thick.  “We now produce more natural gas than any country on Earth,” he said.  True, but this has occurred despite the dead hand of Obama’s regulators.  “We have tough new rules on big banks,” he said.  But the big banks are bigger than ever and still too big to fail.

There’s “a new foundation for stronger, more durable economic growth,” Obama went on.  But who thinks this will be case once the Federal Reserve stops pumping $85 billion into the economy each month?  

Only a few dreamers.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The President and His Racial Hang-Ups

When Barack Obama said that if he had a son, "he'd look like Trayvon," it perhaps didn't say much for him as a parent. And when the president now says that Martin could have been him "35 years ago," it doesn't say much for him as a youth. Of course, we know that Choom Gang Obama smoked marijuana like Martin. I wonder, though, did he miss 53 out of 90 days of school and get suspended 3 times during that period? Was he caught with ladies jewelry, a "burglary tool" and drug paraphernalia in school? Did he enjoy fighting and, when a girlfriend implored him to beat his sword into ploughshares, say that he was going to fight another boy again because "he didn't bleed enough for me"? Most significantly, would Obama have attacked George Zimmerman, broken his nose and pounded his head against the pavement? It seems the president is implying he was a thug.

(Aside: on the other hand, if you truly believe Martin was a good kid, Mr. Obama, would you have been okay with his dating one of your daughters?)
In reality, I'm quite certain what young Obama would've done if he had been profiled and was alarmed at being followed. Run. Ah, but should a teenager minding his own business (supposedly) have to be profiled?  The president certainly doesn't think so, as he recently said, "There are very few African American men who haven't had the experience of walking across the street and hearing the locks click on the doors of cars. That happens to me - at least before I was a senator. There are very few African Americans who haven't had the experience of getting on an elevator and a woman clutching her purse nervously and holding her breath until she had a chance to get off."

Yes, what injustice. What an imposition. What prejudice.

What nonsense.

Read the Rest: The American Thinker

Why are so many Democrats bailing on ObamaCare?

The landmark health-reform law passed in 2010 has never been very popular and always highly partisan, but a new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds that a group of once loyal Democrats has been steadily turning against Obamacare: Democrats who are ideologically moderate  or conservative.

Just after the law was passed in 2010, fully 74 percent of moderate and conservative Democrats supported the federal law making changes to the health-care system. But just 46 percent express support in the new poll, down 11 points in the past year. Liberal Democrats, by contrast, have continued to support the law at very high levels – 78 percent in the latest survey. Among the public at large, 42 percent support and 49 percent oppose the law, retreating from an even split at 47 percent apiece last July.

The shift among the Democratic party’s large swath in the ideological middle– most Democrats in this poll, 57 percent, identify as moderate or conservative – is driving an overall drop in party support for the legislation: Just 58 percent of Democrats now support the law, down from 68 percent last year and the lowest since the law was enacted in 2010. This broader drop mirrors tracking surveys by the non-partisan Kaiser Family Foundation and Fox News polls, both of which found Democratic support falling earlier this year.

Politically, the downward shift among moderate and conservative Democrats may be inconsequential. Senate Democrats have ignored more than three dozen House Republicans efforts to repeal the law, and even if they lost control of the chamber in the 2014 midterm elections Obama would surely veto any attempt to undo his signature legislative achievement.

But persistent skepticism of Obamacare continues to pose an obstacle to getting key parts of the law off the ground.

Read More: Washington Post

Charles Krauthammer Schools an Idiot Lib on Detroit

Monday, July 22, 2013

FACT: Democrat Virginia Gubernatorial Candidate Terry McAuliffe is full of Crap

PolitiFact, the left-leaning fact-checking organization, said Virginia gubernatorial candidate, Democrat Terry McAuliffe, made "hyperbolic" and false statements during last Saturday's debate when he alleged that an independent prosecutor had concluded that Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, the Republican candidate, should be prosecuted on ethics charges.

"There is nothing in the report that remotely supports McAuliffe’s claim. To the contrary, the report concludes Cuccinelli did not violate any laws," PolitiFact concluded. "McAuliffe’s hyperbolic statement is not only wrong, it defies any reasonable reading of the report. We rate his comment Pants on Fire."

At last Saturday's gubernatorial debate, McAuliffe alleged that a special prosecutor wrote in his report that Cuccinelli should be prosecuted for failing to disclose some benefits he received from Star Scientific CEO Jonnie Williams. Cuccinelli has said his failure to disclose the benefits was an oversight, and the special prosecutor agreed.

"If you read the report, which I have done, it says the attorney general should have been prosecuted," McAuliffe said at the debate. 

Cuccinelli immediately called McAuliffe out on the false charges.
"That’s absolutely wrong," Cuccinelli said. "I’ll let the fact checkers take care of it."

After he was briefed for 15 minutes by his handlers after the debate, McAuliffe, when pressed on his statement, said, "Well, that’s my analysis of the report."

As PolitiFact noted, though, the nine-page report released on July 18 said, "our investigation finds no evidence" that Cuccinelli "violated any laws or intentionally failed to disclose the gifts." The report, according to PolitiFact, did not even mention the word "prosecute," and it offered "no opinion on the strength or weakness of the state's disclosure laws."

Courtesy: Breitbart

Friday, July 19, 2013

Another ObamaCare Fail: You MAY NOT be keeping the Doctor you like after all.

As Obamacare was being pushed through Congress in 2010, the Obama administration and its allies were unequivocal in two claims: If you like your doctor and you like your current health care plan, you can keep them both. 

 HHS Secretary Kathleen Sibelius and then-House speaker Nancy Pelosi backed the president fully in this regard. The White House even went so far as to post a "Health Insurance Reform Reality Check" on its website, where "Linda Douglass of the White House Office of Health Reform debunks the myth that reform will force you out of your current insurance plan or force you to change doctors."  President Obama upped the ante, putting the promise in the form of a "guarantee":

THE PRESIDENT: Here is a guarantee that I've made. If you have insurance that you like, then you will be able to keep that insurance. If you've got a doctor that you like, you will be able to keep your doctor. Nobody is trying to change what works in the system. We are trying to change what doesn't work in the system.

While there has been sniping back and forth between the administration and its detractors about the real-world application and implementation of Obamacare, the new website has taken some of the mystery out of the controversy.  And President Obama and his administration do not fare well in this latest "reality check."  Among the questions that HHS recently added to the website: "Can I keep my own doctor?":

"Depending on the plan you choose in the Marketplace, you may be able to keep your current doctor."  The bottom line is that Obamacare guarantees neither. Doctors may be only available through certain networks, just as in the current system.  And only plans that existed in their current form on March 23, 2010, are even eligible to be "kept." The vast majority of plans will be new, subject to a raft of new regulations, requirements, and restrictions.
Now that Health and Human Services has confirmed that the suspicions of Obamacare opponents were justified, the Obama administration will have some explaining to do to friends and foes of the law alike. Because now everyone is finding out "what's in it."

The Weekly Standard

But, I thought President Obama saved Detroit.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Obama's Coal Hypocrisy: America NO Africa YES

Africans can burn coal. Americans can’t.

That’s the conclusion to be drawn from the Obama administration’s most recent forays into energy policy.

On June 25, President Obama was at Georgetown University decrying “carbon pollution” and making it clear that he will prohibit any new coal-fired power plants from being built in the U.S. Five days later, while Obama was in Africa, the White House released a fact sheet on its “Power Africa” initiative that aims to double access to electricity in sub-Saharan Africa by helping finance some 10,000 megawatts of new generation capacity in that region.

During his Georgetown speech, Obama used the phrase “carbon pollution” a whopping 30 times. In the document on Power Africa, that phrase doesn’t appear even once. 

The contrast between Obama’s Georgetown speech and his effort to make electricity more available in Africa goes to the crux of the entire climate-change debate. Talk about cutting carbon dioxide emissions may appeal to “green” voters in rich countries where energy is cheap and abundant. It doesn’t sell in Africa or other poverty-stricken regions where energy is scarce and expensive.

In his Georgetown speech, Obama announced a “new national climate action plan” to “protect our country from the impacts of climate change,” as well as a plan to “lead the world in a coordinated assault on a changing climate.” During his remarks, the president repeatedly implied that the U.S. could, on its own, make a major difference in global carbon dioxide emissions and, therefore, in climate change. He said that voters should reward politicians based on their green quotient: “Remind everyone who represents you that . . . sheltering future generations against the ravages of climate change is a prerequisite for your vote.” He went on to say that by limiting emissions from domestic power plants, Americans “will have the satisfaction of knowing that the world we leave to our children will be better off for what we did.”

It’s hard to imagine a bigger fib. And it’s a fib that relies on the public’s near-total ignorance of the realities of global energy use, such as the soaring amounts of carbon dioxide coming from developing countries. But given Obama’s desire to do something about energy poverty in Africa, a laudable goal, let’s look at what’s happening there.

Between 2002 and 2012, the U.S. reduced its “carbon pollution” — to use Obama’s inane phrase — by 8 percent. Meanwhile, in Africa, carbon dioxide emissions rose by nearly 35 percent. Over that same time frame, U.S. coal use dropped by nearly 21 percent. In Africa, coal use jumped by 15 percent. And despite Obama’s cheery talk about “clean energy” and renewables, Africa’s coal use — indeed, Africa’s use of all forms of energy — will continue to soar.

Read More: National Review

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Study: Electric Cars No 'Greener' Than Gasoline Cars

According to a newly released study, electric cars are no more “environmentally friendly” than are gasoline-powered vehicles. In fact, with everything considered, they may even be worse on the environment. Confused?
In an article entitled “Unclean at Any Speed” in the journal IEEE Spectrum, researcher Ozzie Zehner says electric cars lead to hidden environmental and health damages and are likely more harmful than gasoline cars and other transportation options. From

Electric cars merely shift negative impacts from one place to another, he wrote, and “most electric-car assessments analyze only the charging of the car. This is an important factor indeed. But a more rigorous analysis would consider the environmental impact over the vehicle’s entire life cycle, from its construction through its operation and on to its eventual retirement at the junkyard.”
Political priorities and corporate influence have created a flawed impression that electric cars significantly reduce transportation impacts, he said.
“Upon closer consideration, moving from petroleum-fueled vehicles to electric cars starts to appear tantamount to shifting from one brand of cigarettes to another,” Zehner, a visiting scholar at the University of California, Berkeley, said.

This, of course, should come as no shock to anyone who has followed the similarly ridiculous (political) story of ethanol.
As is the case with the electric car, the idea of ethanol was (is – to politicians and environmentalists) appealing. We could reduce our dependence on oil – foreign oil in particular – and stop spewing megatons of carbon into the atmosphere. All by replacing oil with clean, home-grown, all-American corn! It all sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it? It is.
As reported in Popular Mechanics, corn farming isn’t cheap. In fact, it’s damn expensive.

It requires heavy inputs of nitrogen fertilizer (made with natural gas), applications of herbicides and other chemicals (made mostly from oil), heavy machinery (which runs on diesel fuel) and transportation (diesel fuel again). Converting the corn into fuel requires still more energy (gas, oil, diesel fuel). The ratio of how much energy is used to make ethanol versus how much it delivers is known as the energy balance, and calculating it is surprisingly complex.
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory states that, “Today, 1 Btu of fossil energy consumed in producing and delivering corn ethanol results in 1.3 Btu of usable energy in your fuel tank.” Even that modest payback may be overstated. Skeptics cite the research of Cornell University professor David Pimentel, who estimates that it takes approximately 1.3 gal. of oil to produce a single gallon of ethanol.

The pros and cons of both electric cars and ethanol will be debated for years. As will the pros and cons of wind and solar power. The question is, what should be the government’s role – if any – in the meantime?
Should the federal government mandate and support (prop up) specific technologies (See: Barack Obama: wind and solar energy) and spend (lose) billions of tax-payer dollars on those (politically-selected) technologies? Or, should it allow the free market to choose the best alternatives? (Let’s go with “B”, shall we?)
Perhaps the answer lies somewhere in between.

Read More: Independent Journal

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

North Carolina turns down Federal Long Term Unemplotment funds and loans.

North Carolina became the first state in the country to forfeit federal long-term unemployment benefits.

As her state budgets continued to balloon and unemployment remains uncomfortably high, the Republican controlled legislature ended the state’s war on prudent fiscal policy by exempting herself from receiving further federal assistance for people unemployed longer than 26 weeks, as well as lowering the maximum potential benefit.
If you listen to Paul Krugman of The New York Times, you’d believe the GOP was doing this to upset President Obama and purposefully hurt the poor.

Is life too easy for the unemployed? You may not think so, and I certainly don’t think so. But that, remarkably, is what many and perhaps most Republicans believe. And they’re acting on that belief: there’s a nationwide movement under way to punish the unemployed, based on the proposition that we can cure unemployment by making the jobless even more miserable.

But it’s not only elitist policy wonks from New York that believe the human cost shows a lack of compassion. The Charlotte Observer quotes resident Eddrena Morris, unemployed since February 2012, who asks, “What do they expect people to do? How are people going to feed their families?”

It’s a legitimate concern for someone looking to put food on their table but the difficult truth is that extended benefits play an unfortunate role in the stubborn 8.8 percent unemployment rate North Carolina currently lives with.
As of today, jobless benefits cap out at a pretax rate $350 per week (down from $535 prior to Sunday’s cuts). As Krugman notes, “some hammock,” in response to Paul Ryan referring to welfare’s changing role from safety net to entitlement hammock.

And he’s right, it’s not much money. Speaking personally, $1,500 per month would barely cover the cost of feeding my family of 6, much less cover electricity or water or any other of life’s essentials.

But the question remains: does receiving up to $1,500 per month purely as a matter of benefit for searching for a job hurt the economy as a whole? Or help it?

Read More: Red State

Monday, July 1, 2013

Obama Administration to allow Foreign Security Troops in United States?

As part of a deal signed in Wash DC between the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry and FEMA, Russian officials will provide “security at mass events” in the United States, a scenario that won’t sit well with Americans wary of foreign assets operating on US soil.

According to a press release by the Ministry of the Russian Federation for Civil Defense and Emergencies, US and Russian officials met on June 25 at the 17th Joint U.S.-Russia Cooperation Committee on Emergency Situations.
In addition to agreeing with FEMA to “exchange experts during joint rescue operations in major disasters,” the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry will also be providing “security at mass events” in the United States.
This suggests that events designated as “National Special Security Events” by the Department of Homeland Security, which include the Super Bowl, international summits such as the G8 and presidential inaugurations, will now rely partly on Russian authorities to provide security.

The meeting last week also agreed on the conclusion that US and Russian emergency authorities will increase their co-operation, “in order to respond efficiently to all kinds of disasters.”

The use of foreign troops or other officials in a law enforcement capacity providing “security” inside the United States is illegal under Posse Comitatus. Capt. William Geddes of the U.S. Army Reserve acknowledged last year that it is against federal law to use US troops to conduct police patrols, despite the fact that such occurrences are becoming increasingly common. The use of foreign troops is an even more clear cut violation of Posse Comitatus.


NFL says NYET to ObamaCare Propaganda

The NFL indicated that the league had no desire to help the Obama administration sell and implement Obamacare this fall.

NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy emailed the Washington Examiner's Philip Klein to say the NFL had no plans to help promote Obamacare: 

We have responded to the letters we received from members of Congress to inform them we currently have no plans to engage in this area and have had no substantive contact with the administration about PPACA’s implementation.

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello emailed the Washington Post the same statement.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius had said this week the Obama administration was looking to partner with professional sports leagues to market Obamacare exchanges this fall to sell the unpopular healthcare law to the public. 

The NFL's statement comes hours after the two top ranking Republicans in the Senate--Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Senate Republican Whip John Cornyn (R-TX)--wrote a letter to six major professional sports leagues urging them not to feel threatened or pressured into supporting Obamacare. 

Hat Tip: Breitbart Sports