Second Term Malaise

Thursday, April 18, AD 2013

Bored Obama

Often times the worst thing that can happen to any President is winning a second term, since most presidential second terms in American history have tended to be dismal.  Ann Althouse enumerates the ways in which Obama’s second term is off to a miserable start:

1. It’s been so bad that the media dropped their erstwhile foible of talking about everything that happens in terms of what it means for Obama. And here it is, the first lap of his new term, when there’s more reason than usual to talk about how things are working out for the President.

2. Obama made gun control his big issue leading into the new term. He tried so hard to deploy his speaking skills to channel the nation’s emotion after the Sandy Hook massacre, and in the end he couldn’t even wrangle all of the Democrats in the Senate, and he was reduced yesterday to surrounding himself with human vessels of tragedy and “a scowling Vice President Biden” and pronounce it “all in all…  a pretty shameful day for Washington.” The media offered weak support by describing him as passionately angry, but I watched the video and found it surprising dull. I couldn’t motivate myself to go over to my computer to blog about it last night. Obama knew he was going to lose. The theater of sympathy and outrage had gone on far too long, the show was a flop, and the leading man was obliged to take his curtain call.

3. North Korea apparently has a nuclear weapon and the nerve to use it (or to pose as if it does), and the new Secretary of State, the exceedingly dreary John Kerry, is sojourning in the general area nattering about global warming —  “the Foreign Minister and I agreed to raise the initiative above the level that it is today” — and meanwhile, back in the United States, it’s really cold.

4. Obama’s efforts to get some lightweight good press over basketball failed. His bracket was busted, and a cutesy photo-op produced an embarrassing video in which he went 2 for 22. That he could play basketball was an element of his legend, and now it’s that video that comes to mind when we think of Obama and basketball. Does he even have another sport? Golf? Golf, unlike basketball, never worked as an element of the Obama legend.

5. He shut off White House tours, presumably on the theory that it would spark outrage at the sequester (and those terrible Republicans), but that gesture clashed with his own fun in the White House. Ordinary kids had their field trips canceled, while Obama’s daughters got Justin Timberlake to come to the White
House and perform right in front of them. It was another of the many parties. Wasn’t Beyonce just there? And then she and Jay-Z went to Cuba, and, when criticized, Jay-Z put out a pissy rap tune that (I
think) insulted Obama.

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11 Responses to Second Term Malaise

  • The country faces rather dire economic circumstances and the American people decided to reelect a King Log who will do nothing for the next four years.


    Do you mean…

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  • Given what Obama has been able to “accomplish” in his first term, namely Obamacare, just his winning a second is a major success in that he is able to cement it. Let’s face it, Obamacare is here to stay for the foreseeable future.

    Although the gun control legislation failed to gain a filibuster-proof vote in the Senate, people like like Pat Toomey, Kelly Ayote, and Jeff Flake, who are not only key republicans, but hitherto reliable conservatives, did much of Obama’s bidding on the bill.

    Furthermore, you have conservative heart throb Marco Rubio spending practically all the political capital he has to crawl into bed with Chuck Schumer, Dick Durbin, John McCain, and Lindsey Graham, the worst elements of both parties, to advance this trainwreck of an immigration bill. Rubio is making the talk radio rounds making such an ass of himself trying to defend it that not even Rush Limbaugh or Mark Levin, who normally waste no time shilling for Rubio, are willilng to circle the wagons for him on this.

    I would say that if you look at this through the lrnse of Obama’s Alinskyite mindset, his second term is off to a smashingly successful start.

  • “Let’s face it, Obamacare is here to stay for the foreseeable future.”

    And increasingly unpopular with the American people Greg, even before the onerous provisions kick in. Democrats in Congress are beginning to panic that Obamacare will be the nail in their coffin for the 2014 elections:

    “people like like Pat Toomey, Kelly Ayote, and Jeff Flake, who are not only key republicans, but hitherto reliable conservatives, did much of Obama’s bidding on the bill.”

    Ayotte and Flake both voted against the legislation, merely allowing it to come to the floor to be defeated. Toomey has sworn off any further efforts by him to get Toomey-Manchin passed in future.

    “to advance this trainwreck of an immigration bill.”

    Which, unless heavily amended, will never get through the House.

  • Do you think Obama really cares whether or not Obamacare is unpopular? It was unpopular when it was first signed and he still got reelected.

    Why even allow an undermining of the 2nd Amendment to get to the floor to begin with? The fact that Toomey is willing to allow his name to be attached that legislation is very telling in and of itself. Like I have said before, to see even the conservative wing of the GOP get its ass handed to it by a third rate thug like Obama is painful to watch.

  • “Do you think Obama really cares whether or not Obamacare is unpopular?”

    If it gives him a Congress totally controlled by Republicans the last two years in his term, yes I think he will care quite a bit.

    “Why even allow an undermining of the 2nd Amendment to get to the floor to begin with?”
    To hand Obama a major defeat and to get Democrats on record in an up or down vote that will come back to haunt some of them in 2014.

    “The fact that Toomey is willing to allow his name to be attached that legislation is very telling in and of itself.”
    It’s called a mistake Greg, something I suspect Toomey is telling himself now. Santorum’s suspicions that this guy might be politically inept and undependable are looking prescient.

    “Obama is painful to watch.”

    That is the most accurate part of your comment.

  • Obama lost the House, damned near lost the Senate, caused massive GOP victories many states in 2010 due in large part to Obamacare and was still unfazed. I don’t see his losing Congress next year, which is far from certain, to make him care about the unpopularity of Obamacare.

    What is it with you guys who refuse to understand who this guy is? You seem to want to think he is trying to be Bill Clinton, but is just doing a bad job. Nor do I think you want to realize just how much of an advance of left wing ideology as policy Obamacare really is.

  • “Obama lost the House, damned near lost the Senate, caused massive GOP victories many states in 2010 due in large part to Obamacare and was still unfazed.”

    Because he is a loser for the Democrats, and most Democrats have yet to figure out that Obama could care less about his party. The Republicans haven’t been stronger at the state level since the twenties and retained the House in 2012 in the teeth of Obama being reelected. Obama will leave the Republicans much stronger and the Democrats much weaker than when he was sworn in in 2009.

    ” I don’t see his losing Congress next year,”

    I certainly do. The House is already a lost cause for the Democrats and there are enough Democrats running to hold seats in red states that the Senate is very much in play. Without Obama on the ticket, the 2014 electorate is going to look far more like 2010 than 2012.

    “What is it with you guys who refuse to understand who this guy is?”

    A fairly run of the mill liberal Democrat who is the last gasp of traditional Democrat identity politics before the great shattering of the Democrat coalition. They who live by identity politics die by identity politics.

    “realize just how much of an advance of left wing ideology as policy Obamacare really is.”

    It is only an advance if it proves popular, like Social Security. If anything Obamacare is more unpopular today than when it passed, and we have not yet seen the truly onerous features yet kick in.

  • What is it with you guys who refuse to understand who this guy is? You seem to want to think he is trying to be Bill Clinton, but is just doing a bad job. Nor do I think you want to realize just how much of an advance of left wing ideology as policy Obamacare really is.

    I suspect you are attributing to Obama a seriousness of purpose he lacks. An alternative hypothesis one might delineate is as follows:

    1. He has an understanding of American history derived from trade books written by the likes of Alan Brinkley, Doris Kearns Goodwin, Arthur Schlesinger &c.

    2. He has an understanding of American institutions derived from imbibing the work of academic grifters like Laurence Tribe.

    3. He has an understanding of economics and business derived from reading articles ca 1980 by liberal journalists about the auto industry and the oil industry.

    4. He has an understanding of the larger society derived from the tastes and prejudices and habits of the social circles in which he has moved all his life. The public tangles over contraception mandates and guns are the work of a man who just does not get his opposition and has not minimal respect for them due to social isolation. (Robert Bork had a similar assessment of John Paul Stevens, bar that Stevens is a pleasant and agreeable human being on a day-to-day basis).

    5. He reads memoranda and checks off canned options provided by his subordinates, adding some vague marginalia in the process (“we ought to be doing more of this”).

    6. He understands himself as a figure in a long narrative which includes other characters such as Franklin Roosevelt, John Kennedy, Earl Warren, &c.

    7. He makes a lot of gassy and self-referential speeches.

    He’s playing a role. He hardly knows policy from bingo and has done little or no serious thinking about normative questions. The leadership of the Democratic congressional caucus regard his utterances as so much white noise (recall Pelosi hitting the mute button on the phone and negotiating with Reid over details while Obama yammered). By all appearances, this man, a licensed attorney, has no manifest skills in the art of negotiation.

    Look at his previous employments. He was on the faculty of the University of Chicago Law School for 12 years. He published not one scholarly article in that time. He was a specialist in constitutional law. The problem with that was identified by William Dyer: you can fake it teaching constitutional law, which you cannot in teaching commercial or tax law. Much of the time, he appears to have been assigned to teach boutique courses (“___ & the Law”). Per Richard Epstein, he did not attend faculty meetings or serve on committees. By some accounts, his student evaluations declined monotonically, as did his course attendance.

    You can call him “left wing” or whatever, but I submit to you a more precise description would be “shallow and conventional product of a particular subculture”. There’s hardly any there there, and never was.

The Clothes Have No Emperor

Friday, February 8, AD 2013

18 Responses to The Clothes Have No Emperor

  • Agreed.

    To quote the second worst Secy of State, recently, “What difference does it make?”

    It’s now every man for himself.

    America is kaput.

  • Obama is not merely the worst President in our history.

    Give it until 2061 to make definitive statements like that. In any case, Andrew Johnson, Woodrow Wilson, Hebert Hoover, and Lyndon Johnson are stiff competition for that award.

    I am remembering in 1981 the Reagan Administration was taken to task in the press because there was a dogfight (over in minutes, IIRC) between U.S. Navy pilots and LIbyan Air Force planes and the President was not informed until he awakened the next morning. I see that in 2012 our courtesan news media is on top of things.

  • He is additionally completely disconnected from the office that he holds.

    Cut the guy some slack. He needed to rest up for that fundraiser in Vegas the next day.

  • Art

    What about Jimmy Carter? It would a sin against justice for any discussion about the worst U.S. president to not include his name.

  • The Palace Guard Media: Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these courtiers from the swift completion of their leftist jock-sniffing.

  • What about Jimmy Carter? It would a sin against justice for any discussion about the worst U.S. president to not include his name.

    Mr. Carter’s principal offenses include

    1. Bad monetary policy leading to more rapid currency erosion.

    2. Loss of prestige (a fungible quality) due to dithering nincompoopery vis a vis Ayatollah Khomeini, Anastasio Somoza, the Sandinista National Directorate, Ahmadou Mahtar M’Bow, and sundry others. He did eventually realize that putting Cyrus Vance in charge of the Foreign Service and Andrew Young in charge of public diplomacy were bad moves. Took about two-and-a-half years of embarrassment as well as substantive policy failure (e.g. arms control treaties you could cheat, the Law of the Sea swindle, &c).

    3. A comprehensive failure to build relationships with members of Congress other than Edmund Muskie. (To be sure, Congress was and is an awful institution).

    4. An attempt at civil service reform that ended up (after the Democratic Congressional caucus was done with it) as a bag of bon bons for the public employee unions and assorted micro-constituency groups (e.g. blacks who do poorly on civil service examinations).

    He had some successes too (airline and trucking deregulation, the Camp David accords).

    Mr. McClarey will have to correct me if I have misunderstood, but I believe that Andrew Johnson was perfectly content to let the Southern states re-institute bondage through the black codes, Woodrow Wilson was willing to accommodate destructive and futile French revanchism to get his dippy and unworkable collective security scheme, Herbert Hoover presided in the most otiose manner over 29 months worth of rapid deflation and waves of bank failures; and Lyndon Johnson marched American troops into Indo-China armed with a strategy so wretched we came out the back end with an unmitigated political loss and 58,000 dead soldiers, inveigled and manipulated Congress into enacting a public medical insurance scheme so dysfunctional that the political economy of medical care has never been right since, ruined the autonomy of state and local government with wretched ‘co-operative federalism’, promoted one thing after another which made for the ruin of the inner city: ‘urban renewal’, public housing, mortgage insurance for people who had no business taking out loans; and so forth. I think you have to wait another dozen years to make a definitive statement on Carter, but I think he’s a piker compared to these others. YMMV.

  • The naked truth concerning Barrack Hussein Obama is that had we the media and Supreme Court of the 1940’s today he would have long since been impeached.

  • Two other things about Johnson:

    1. Currency erosion. The inflation Mr. Carter exacerbated appeared in 1966 after Johnson successfully bullied the Federal Reserve under Wm. Martin into co-operating with his economic stimulus program. Martin had resisted for about a year and then caved.

    2. Habituation to fiscal deficits.

    During the period running from 1929 to 1961, the federal government ran deficits as a matter of course. However, there was tremendous slack in the macroeconomy during the period running from 1929 to 1941 (and even so, we balanced the budget twice), the country was under a comprehensive national mobilization from 1941 to 1945, was at war and under a partial mobilization from 1950 to 1953, was winding down a war effort during 1945-47 and 1953-54, and was facing business recessions in 1945-47, 1954, 1957-58, and 1960-61. Just about every year there was not some politico-military or economic justification for running a deficit, the budget was balanced. The adults left the room in 1961 and you can see the results. We live in Johnsonland, and it is not a nice neighborhood.

  • For a long time I counted Obama as our second worst President behind Buchanan who did so much to hasten on the Civil War through his inaction and appeasement of Southern fireeaters. However, after his re-election I decided that Obama in two terms would do enough harm to the country to surpass even Buchanan.

  • I forgot that Carter, Vance, Sol Linowitz, and Ellsworth Bunker were successfully played by Omar Torrijos and Gabriel Lewis. Returning the Canal Zone to Panama was a magnanimous act. Turning over unqualified control of the canal and paying the Panamanians to take it off our hands was incomprehensible.

  • Forgot about Carter undermining Abel Muzorewa’s government in Rhodesia. Carter being Carter, he likely still thinks he did the right thing.

  • The main problem with Johnson (Andrew, that is) was his stubborn inability to work with the Republicans in Congress to make Reconstruction work. Admittedly many of the Republicans were in revenge mode, so they desired a policy that was far too stern, while Johnson went too far in the other direction. Now perhaps this is less a condemnation of Johnson than a sign of what a talented politician Lincoln was, but Abe was able to work with the Radical Republicans throughout the Civil War. I have no doubt that had he lived Reconstruction would have been more successful as the policy would not have been as spiteful yet it would have perhaps granted longer-lasting protections to the freed slaves. Honestly, we’ll never know, and it’s quite possible that no president would have steered precisely the right course.


    Somehow, I suspect that ‘making Reconstruction work’ would have required generations-long trusteeships over most of the Southern states. One could argue that stiffing Confederate veterans of their Army bonuses was bad policy and stripping much of the adult population (including veterans and Confederate politicians) of civic privileges was also. Please note that the code linked to above was enacted in Mississippi three years prior to the passage of the 14th Amendment.

  • I think that Lincoln might have hit upon the partial solution of creating “black” states out in the West and in Alaska. The United States Colored Troops, all 180,000 of them, could have been used to help establish the infrastructure of such new states. The Federal government could have picked up the tab to transport black families to new lives in the West. This would have had to have been done on a voluntary basis of course. With Southern states bleeding blacks to these newly created states, I think there would have been an attempt on part of some of the states to treat the freedmen better in order to retain this source of cheap labor. The new black states would have ensured continued black representation in the House and the Senate. Not an ideal solution certainly, but far better than what historically occurred.

  • I always thought that Andrew Johnson was a politically deaf person in an awful situation. We usually remember that war is hell, but we always seem to forget how ugly the aftermath of war is.

    Lincoln had the same good fortune as Churchill, not having to serve through the rebuilding years. Lincoln maybe could have pulled it off, as he was a great man with a great reputation. Johnson’s reputation was less stellar, and he didn’t make any friends with anyone in states that had the vote. I think of him as the wrong man for a tough job, but not as one of the worst presidents of all time. I could be wrong though.

  • ….the biggest problem that night senator was that nobody knew what was going on…..

    S H A M E F U L !

  • Shameful!
    US citizens must be wondering how this is affecting the way other countries view their foreign policy. Knee jerk is that the US can no longer be trusted.
    Saner heads realise that this will pass with the passing of Obama – the sooner the better.
    I’m not suggesting that some redneck should make it happen sooner than his elected term comes to its close. 😉

  • Since Fox and the Weekly Standard have been covering this in the immediate aftermath in September, I have been waiting for someone to label this the famous three AM call and demanding to know where the president and Hilary were during he crucial 7-8 hours and where are the state department employees who were on site and have not been allowed to be questioned as well as who concocted the lame video story that he parroted for weeks. Just like his overriding his advisors on Syria, he didn’t act. I believe he went to bed relying on the fact that his staff and the media would cover for him which people have been doing all his life I hope the parents and other relatives of the slain men come forward and demand answers. Better late than never.
    I believe he is the worst because of his duplicity (see Obamacare), disengagement, trashing of the Constitution and enormous debt and government expansion and intrusion in every facet of citizens’ lives and his unwillingness to confront terror (The handling of Fort Hood shooter who killed 31 Americans is a disgrace). Add to that his handling of Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Libya, Egypt etc. and his constant campaigning on selected issues and playing constatly to his base, make him the hands-down winner.

Sarah Palin on Roe and Obama

Wednesday, January 23, AD 2013



Forty years ago today the Supreme Court rendered its Roe v. Wade decision. Those who believe in the sanctity of human life and long to see America embrace a culture in which innocent life is honored and protected continue to look for a day when humanity is again deemed valuable, where we cherish even those who would be born in “less than ideal circumstances.” Children are our most precious resource and remain the greatest symbol of hope God has given us. This is just one reason why the annual March for Life has been such a powerful aspect of the pro-life movement. This year’s event is Friday, January 25th, and once again a multitude of Americans will gather in Washington, D.C. to show their support for precious little ones.

Our Founding Fathers declared: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.” However, since 1973, millions of children have been denied the basic right upon which all the others hinge: the right to life.

Lately, President Obama has taken to boldly highlighting children in his speeches. Using kids as the backdrop for his gun control speech, the President claimed his commitment to young ones. “If there’s even one life that can be saved, then we’ve got an obligation to try,” he said. He then outlined why gutting our Second Amendment is the means by which he believes we accomplish this. Every law-abiding citizen’s heart is broken when children are the target of men hell-bent on committing acts of evil, and we agree that the safety and protection of innocent life is paramount.

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18 Responses to Sarah Palin on Roe and Obama

  • Thank you for this. Very well articulated. I have been saying this myself for a long time now. Obama would be willing to abort and kill his own grandchild if his daughter had an unintended pregnancy. It is a vicious point of view on the value of human life. An unborn child is every bit as fully human as any child killed in the school massacre. Think of what our society would be like if we welcomed all human life with joy, rallied around to support the mothers of all children, and put down our selfish inclinations to do just what is convenient for our own purposes. There is a terrible, malicious selfishness at the heart of American materialism. Obama’s agenda only encourages it. He is a source of depression and sense of futility for the whole nation.

  • Well said, Sarah Palin! For individuals with Down syndrome, their families, and friends, who are going to be at the March for Life in DC on Friday, please join us for our KIDS (Keep Infants with Down Syndrome) gathering prior to the march, and walk with us in the March for Life, in solidarity with the individuals with Down syndrome, born and unborn. Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers, herself also a mother of a child with Down syndrome, will speak to our group at 11:00.
    (if you decide to join us, my contact information is on the KIDS blog)

  • Good posting. My one nitpick – and it’s a nitpick – is that we shouldn’t refer to the pro-abortion agenda as “liberal”. We should allow the self-identified liberal to reclaim his rightful role in the pro-life movement. It’s kind of the point of the whole posting.

  • I sincerely hope Sarah Palin’s career in politics is not over. She needs to stay in the political arena and keep being a voice for life.

  • Sarah has not made a “career” in politics, she has stepped forward as a freedom loving American citizen to make things better for our country when corrupt politicians were only making things better for themselves. She was so effective at righting wrong in government, even taking on high level people in her own party, that she became a threat to the opposing party and to some within her party. Those politicos turned the elite media on her to destroy her and have succeeded to this point. Not even a single Catholic clergyman ever spoke up in her defense, not even when it was announced she was carrying a Downs syndrome child. Until the good people in this country rise up and demand from the First Amendment Rights protected media, the truth and honest objectivity, we will continue to be deceived by what has become Pravda in the U.S. If we will do that, good people like Sarah Palin will have a real chance to be elected to high office. I, for one, don’t trust or believe the liberal, now leftest media. But I do trust and believe Sarah Palin.

  • when I see a post with Sarah Palin in the headline I read it right away. To me she stands for hope. She is a sign of contradiction to the sick and sad culture around us.
    This quote from our first commenter says it well : There is a terrible, malicious selfishness at the heart of American materialism. Obama’s agenda only encourages it. He is a source of depression and sense of futility for the whole nation.

  • The current administration has no moral compass. Anarchy and chaos will surely plague us for the next four years.

  • I realize that Ms. Palin has dramatic views and fairly extreem opinions and truth doesn’t seem to matter. When she can refer to him as President Obama I might see a a reason to listen to her vitroil.
    Serioulsy folks, she really is history and illiterate to boot.

  • I love this woman! What she’s been subjected to by mental midgets has been horrendous, yet she still remains so strong and a thorn in Obama’s side. May God bless and protect her and her family.

  • “I realize that Ms. Palin has dramatic views and fairly extreem opinions and truth doesn’t seem to matter.”

    What a substanceless comment! A glittering jewel of an example of a troll grunt that manages only to convey a dislike of Sarah Palin and spares not a second to address the substance of her post which is that Obama’s pro-abortion advocacy makes all of his protestations of concern for children ring as hollow as his promise in 2008 to reduce the deficit in half by the end of his first term. Obama uses kids as political weapons. In the womb they are useful to stir up his followers who view the right to slay their offspring as a precious right or rite. Outside the womb they are useful as political props. Palin was completely on target in her critique.

  • Blee – are you a Mass attending Catholic?

  • Perhaps Blee can enlighten us on what extreme opinions Governor Palin has or when she has strayed from the truth. We’ll be awaiting your response.

  • Blee, Palin refers to President Obama as “President Obama” once in the piece, and 8 times as “the President”. She doesn’t refer to him as “Obama” once.

  • I realize that Ms. Palin has dramatic views and fairly extreem opinions and truth doesn’t seem to matter. When she can refer to him as President Obama I might see a a reason to listen to her vitroil.
    Serioulsy folks, she really is history and illiterate to boot.

    Your literate self might learn to spell common-and-garden words like ‘extreme’ and ‘vitriol’.

  • I so miss getting that sharp Palin point of view on Fox. Who knows where we would be if the puppet media hadn’t tore her down so quickly. Sometimes I get so disheartened by the way Satin so easily steals the show. But I remind myself that it is like we are seeing the gnarly, raveled and torn backside of a beautiful tapestry that won’t be completed until the end of time. We already know that Our Lady’s immaculate (yet sorrowful) heart will triumph! Sigh.

  • Sarah Palin: “There is destiny for every child in the world and it is good…” the unalienable right to the pursuit of Happiness. The pursuit of Happiness for our- selves and our constitutional posterity is the pursuit of our destiny. God, the Father, alone, knows where our pursuit of our destiny will bring us, therefore, let us not hesitate or delay to do the will of God.
    Sarah Palin has my vote. I was, indeed, very disappointed in that I could not vote for Palin.


Friday, November 2, AD 2012

The Las Vegas Review Journal, the largest paper in Nevada, in its endorsement of Mitt Romney for President minces no words:

U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three other Americans died in a well-planned military assault on their diplomatic mission in Benghazi seven weeks ago, the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. So why are details surfacing, piecemeal, only now?

The Obama administration sat by doing nothing for seven hours that night, ignoring calls to dispatch help from our bases in Italy, less than two hours away. It has spent the past seven weeks stretching the story out, engaging in misdirection and deception involving supposed indigenous outrage over an obscure anti-Muslim video, confident that with the aid of a docile press corps this infamous climax to four years of misguided foreign policy can be swept under the rug, at least until after Tuesday’s election.

Charles Woods, father of former Navy SEAL and Henderson resident Tyrone Woods, 41, says his son died slumped over his machine gun after he and fellow ex-SEAL Glen Doherty – not the two locals who were the only bodyguards Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the Obama administration would authorize – held off the enemy for seven hours.

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11 Responses to Ditto

  • U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three other Americans died in a well-planned military assault on their diplomatic mission in Benghazi seven weeks ago, the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. So why are details surfacing, piecemeal, only now?

    Because it’s a really, really, REALLY bad idea to try to blame the CIA when you screw up.

  • I expect better of American Catholic than linking to an opinion piece with no sources and few quotes as somehow a reference on what really happened.

  • I have written on this site extensively about the Benghazi attack Jeff, and I see absolutely nothing in this editorial that is not in accord with the facts as they have painfully been coming out, with zero help from a stonewalling White House.

  • Jeff’s failed obfuscation aside, what else can be said about this scandal except that it’s treason? Sacrificing the lives of Americans, denying them help, and for what? Because you’re afraid a rescue will fail and hurt your election chances? Beyond pathetic… Obama is a coward and possibly the worst president of all time. Spin that NY media.

  • “Obama is a coward and possibly the worst president of all time.”

    Possibly? Do you have a contender in mind? Who could it be? I rack my brains and I cannot guess who might have been worse.

  • Woodrow Wilson was no prize as a President or a human being given his devious segregationist policies, autocratic behavior and megalomania. He did do a few reforms here and there so that leftist historians could ooh and aah about him.

  • “I cannot guess who might have been worse.”

    A lot of historians consider James Buchanan, Lincoln’s immediate predecessor, the worst president of all time because he did nothing to stop the nation’s slide toward civil war in the late 1850s. His predecessors, Millard Fillmore and Franklin Pierce, weren’t much better.

  • Elaine and Rozin,

    What I see as the difference between Buchanan(/Fillmore/Pierce) and Obama is like the difference between a sin of omission and one of commission.

    Buchanan’s presidency led to a transformed United States because he failed to do what was necessary. Obama has laid the groundwork for a transformed United States by positive design.

    His motivation for the purposeful transformation is due, unlike with Wilson, to a dislike of the idea of the United States of America. (I admit I’m speculating, but his policies suggest it to me strongly.) Wilson, as far as I know, did believe in a certain American exceptionalism, derived from the exceptionalism of the Anglo-Saxon race.

    Furthermore, Buchanan and Wilson were undoubtedly Men of Their Times. They were following the general mood of the nation. Obama, on the other hand, is governing counter to the general mood of the nation. He is trying to impose his will, which would not be accepted except for the complicit, duplicitous aid of the mainstream media.

    For these reasons, I think that Obama is not only the worst president we’ve had, but the most dangerous.

  • Nicholas,

    There is no right answer we should all agree. Your response is thoughtful but would only be valid IMO if Obama were to lose in a popular vote landslide. I was thinking of worst President in both political and personal terms also. I don’t think Buchanan was the worst or even second worst President. He suffers by comparison with Lincoln. Fillmore, Pierce and Andrew Johnson had even less going for them. It’s fair to say that a below average series of presidents did nothing to stop the slide towards secession. Wilson was in many ways a duplicitous and detestable person and his betrayal of his own African American supporters illustrates that. Obama’s betrayal of his African American supporters is by neglect rather than malice

    Obama is simply a mouthpiece for the general views of many Democrats today. I have heard nothing from him that I haven’t heard from them previously. That’s why his defeat would not stop his viewpoint. The Democrat nominees in 2016 and 2020 will think no differently than he does.

  • Rozin,

    Let us pray that Tuesday’s results, building on the 2010 midterm elections, and continuing in the 2014 midterms, force a change in the leadership of the Democrat party.

    If Tuesday’s election can become a national repudiation of the current Democrat viewpiont – the way that we saw in 2010 Congressional and state elections – then moderate Democrats (indeed, maybe moderate pro-life Democrats) might be able to take on leadership roles heading into the 2020 election cycle.

    We can pray.

  • Yes Nicholas that’s what I was doing. Even if it takes until 2024 for the Democrats to return to Life I will still be overjoyed.

Why Polling Skews Against Political & Religious Conservatives

Tuesday, October 23, AD 2012

Some 20 years ago as I was finishing graduate school, I worked for a polling company. It was longer than I wanted to but it gave me some valuable insights on that business before I moved into the line of work that I wanted. I got to know the man who ran the company; he ran polls for national and international companies and occasionally dabbled into political polling. He was meticulous and it became very clear that this job was his life. Now I don’t know his politics but I would guess that he was left of center, at least on social issues. However, he was nearly fanatical about being impartial and getting the true response. Some twenty years later, all of this helps me to understand how political polling works, and believe me it is very difficult. In other words, if political polling isn’t done exactly right it becomes a terrible slanted mess.

Here’s how live polling works. Automated computer dialers call randomly generated phone numbers, which are often are disconnected, faxes and or not in service. In a four hour shift you would be lucky to get 8-10 complete surveys per poll taker in a hotly contested political race. Now mind you that was 20 years before cell phones, my understanding is that now because of cell phones and caller id many polling agencies are using brief computer automated voices to ask questions. Most polling agencies have given up on live survey results on such things as your favorite bar of soup, breakfast cereal, shoe company etc. Believe me there were nights that we would put in a four hour shift and call over 150 people and get one or two complete surveys concerning your favorite shampoo.

When it comes to political polling my old boss (who is a Ph.D and widely respected across the country) would fret about the way we ask each question, our tone and our attitude. He would drill into us that he needed unbiased surveys for his clients. He would remind us, and this is very important in today’s world, that conservative oriented people don’t like polling as much as liberals because liberals believe in proselytizing their views while conservatives feel their views are a reflection of their values, as well as their cultural and religious upbringing. This is why liberals tend to be oversampled in polling. By and large they don’t hang up on pollsters and surveys because they view it as their duty and mission to get the word out. Again, my boss was not a conservative and he could see this 20 years ago.

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14 Responses to Why Polling Skews Against Political & Religious Conservatives

  • More recently, there’s the “there are a lot of nutjobs on the other side, and they’ve already proven willing to try to ruin someone’s life over political differences. Nope, not taking the risk that this number blocked guy who claims to be taking a “totally anonymous” political survey is for real” effect.

    As I told the poor guy before I hung up– “no, sorry, no political polls. I like my car.”

  • My one encounter with exit polling was when I was working at a polling place for a candidate, and a pollster was assigned to the same location. He had very specific procedures to randomize the voters he questioned, but he always seemed to end up talking to the young women. I’d bet that anything short of automated calling of random phone numbers, some guy is going to figure out a way to use it to hit on gals.

  • As Mr Hartline implicitly shows, accurate polling of “future behavior” is very difficult and expensive. However, since the Left has thrown off the mask and become much more menacing, as Foxfier notes, it does introduce yet another reason for skewed polling. It’s gotten to the point where anything advanced by the Left including polling (and most pollsters are Leftists) has to be viewed as agitprop unless independently verified. It will be interesting to see if the University of Colorado (Bickers and Berry) model of state (Electoral College) voting ends up more accurate than the public pollsters this cycle. It would even more interesting to see if the “internal” polls of the two Parties matched the model back in the summer.

  • Pinky, believe it or night there was a theory floated around the political blogosphere that in the midterm election of 2010 and earlier this year in the Scott Walker recall election, that male graduate students who were sent to do exit polls were asking an inordinate amount of women exit poll questions. Also the theory states, that female graduate students were asking too many other single female students to exit polls thus skewing the results. As you can imagine there was a lot of egg on pollsters faces after that fiasco.

    Rozin, yes some of the polls are nothing more than agenda driven polls. To save their own reputational skins, I can’t imagine that the final CBS/NY Times poll will have an Ohio sample at +9 Democrat. This number would be something you would expect to see in Oregon, Washington or Minnesota, though a Rasmussen poll today had the race there at 51 Obama 46 Romney. The last Republican to win in Minnesota was Richard Nixon, needless to say that poll has put the fear of God into Chicago HQ.

  • This conservative family can testify to not picking up calls from pollsters. We’ve had more than a few calls during the dinner hour from one or another questionable phone numbers. Since Maryland isn’t a battle ground state, I suspect that the polls are about one of the ballot initiatives. The gambling question seems to be the most well funded. We already had someone come to our door to ask where we stood on that one. I suppose Democrats don’t mind interrupting dinner or the kids’ bedtime to answer questions? I did actually answer a poll call a few months ago, and I found the questions confusing and poorly worded. I suspected that my answers would be twisted to mean whatever the pollster wanted. So I’ve been even more reluctant than usual to pick up any new calls.

  • I just got a call last night from someone wanting to know if I cared to answer “four brief questions” regarding a Democratic candidate for local office. I said no because I suspected that with that few questions, it was probably a “push poll” meant to contrive a certain result and I didn’t care to participate in that game. I’ve only responded to one poll this year, which turned out to be quite lengthy and asked about multiple races. Also, I made the mistake of responding to a poll in the mail that claimed I was a “carefully selected” voter and ever since I’ve been pummeled with junk mail and spam from the RNC and similar groups, so I’m kind of reluctant to encourage them further.

  • Two years ago, the first question they asked me when polling me is asking me about my religion. After telling them I was Catholic, the person hung up. At another time, my husband was asked the same question & when he wouldn’t answer the question, the same thing was done. I was polled once, again about 2 yrs. ago, by Rasmussen but was not asked about religion.

  • Exit polls do not require a likely voter screen and, as they are conducted in person, have a much higher response rate than telephone polls. Still, exit polls conducted in 2004 had some systemic error incorporated within them that proved decisive in context (and led knuckleheads at Harper’s magazine to promote the idea that Republican operatives had hatched some sort of insidious super-secret conspiracy to rig the tabulation machines). I think we have reached a point where anticipatory polling is so unreliable we really do not know what is afoot (but repeated instances of Mitt Romney tallied as leading among non-aligned voters but losing among the sum of voters are … inneresting).

  • Polling is much more sophisticated than 20 years ago. Surveys can get the phone numbers of registered voters from the database at the state’s Secretary of State.

    Some of the polls you get aren’t “push polls.” Rather, they are conducted by interest groups seeking information about voters so they can then follow up at a later point with mailed materials or a visit to your door. They probably put you in a database for future use.

    If you tell the “Obama for Colorado” surveyor you don’t like Obama, they won’t waste their time trying to get you to the polls or trying to persuade you. If you are on the fence, they might work on you some more.

    If you don’t reply, they won’t know enough about you to do one thing or another.

  • Surveys can get the phone numbers of registered voters from the database at the state’s Secretary of State.

    It would be the county Board of Elections in New York. I am not even sure the standard form has a space for a phone number, and it would be your landline number on the date of registration if they did. For thirteen years I voted from the same address on Rochester’s south east side. In that time period, I had five different apartments and four different landline phone numbers.

  • Actually Kevin J though polling may be more sophiscated than it was 20 years ago because of more advanced software, the same methods that were used 20 years ago are used today. Pollsters don’t want to call from voter registration lists, they want random numbers because as Art Deco has stated your phone number is not always provided or accurate on voter registration materials. Pollsters would rather get a variety of disconnects, faxes etc than just deal with provided lists that may miss substantial segments of the populace, i.e those who just have cell phones or those who have moved since they registered.

  • I’d have to completely disagree. I was called by a religious pollster who told me there three questions. When I disagreed with the first question about the definition of marriage, the call was discontinued. Only one question. It is hard to get an accurate poll when those doing them refuse to continue the calls that don’t give them the answers they want.

    There is a saying, “There are liars, damned liars, and then there are statisticians.” Whomever does them skews them in favor of their views. ALL OF THEM regardless of affiliation.

  • Or, possibly, they were polling for a group that you weren’t part of.

    Good heavens, haven’t you ever heard of a selection questions? That’s like claiming all polls are horrible because you’re asked if you’re registered to vote, then if you plan to vote, and saying “no” on either one means they stop asking questions.

    There are inherent flaws to polling, there are induced flaws, and there’s a difference!

Who Was Presidential?

Tuesday, October 23, AD 2012

I have to give the Republican National Committee credit this year when it comes to being quick off the dime in producing web videos.  The above was put out immediately in the aftermath of the debate contrasting the calm demeanor of Romney from the somewhat frenetic and combative stance of Obama.  This clip was typical of the entire debate:

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4 Responses to Who Was Presidential?

  • I thought Obama bin Laden did as well as expected.

    The night went to the SF Giants 9-0 !

    The suit has no president . . .

  • Once again the liberal darlings who call themselves pro-nuclear bloggers at Atomic Insights and NEI Nuclear Notes refuse to recognize that Romney (in the video above) mentions the word “nuclear”, but not his opponent who has given billions of dollars of taxpayers’ money to now bankrupt renewable energy companies. Oh, by the way, under Barack Hussein Obama, Dominion has just announced the closure of 556 megawatts of clean, safe, inexpensive electrical energy from the Kewanee Nuclear Power Plant. Solar power companies like Solyndra that received Obama funding are now bankrupt and nuclear power plants are shutting down. We cannot afford another four years of this.

  • I didn’t watch the debate and it sounds like I didn’t miss much. Oh well, according to this cartoon I just stumbled across (titled “The United Swing States of America”), it doesn’t matter anyway since I live in one of the “everyone else can just sit back and have a beer” states:

  • Mr. ‘wrong and wreckless’ in the Oval Office accusing someone, who wants to serve there, of the same was – well – wrong and wreckless.

    In line with many actions of his fishy foreign policy and many choices of his political liasons, he failed to speak with sincerity about his history of contemptuous dismissal of American government process and its allies.

    Seems like the faded purpose of the UN is more his ambition than leading one USA.

When the Believers Lose Their Faith In The Religion Of Big Government

Sunday, October 21, AD 2012

President Barack Obama’s debate performances could never equal the expectations of the secular faithful. Many on the far left envisioned an American society where religion was about as important to the populace and politically influential as it is in Sweden. The land of the midnight sun has been a great hope to liberals ever since religion began to erode there in the 1950s and abortion became commonplace in the 1960s. Governor Michael Dukakis famously poured over Sweden’s great Welfare state enterprise to see what he might learn, which of course led to his electoral demise in 1988.

With all of his rhetorical skills, President Obama could never make Americans have a come to Pierre Trudeau, Willy Brandt, Jose Luis Zapatero (pick your favorite Western Democratic Socialist) moment like many Americans have a Come to Jesus moment over failings in their lives. Instead of realizing that not everyone can be suckered into buying Big Government swampland, the Left has taken their frustrations out on the President. If only he were talking more about rising and falling oceans and making them believe we are the ones we have been waiting for; the Left attacks the messenger and not the message.

Frank Rich, the New York Times columnist laments about this in a long New York magazine  article. The writer for the Old Gray Lady states the Americans are somehow too dumb to become like Europeans and surrender their lives to government and not God. He sees little hope and concludes the Tea Party will always prevail in the American persona rather than government control. Talk about a brain trust, can you imagine the anti-religious nuggets thrown around the water cooler when Bill Keller, the former New York Times editor was present. You may recall Keller infamously dubbed himself a “Collapsed Catholic,” fortunately reported to us by former Newsweek Religion Editor Kenneth Woodward, who is not Catholic and hardly a friend of conservatives, but a principled man who couldn’t take any more of the Times’ hypocrisy directed at the Church. I would strongly suggest you read this The New York magazine article for if conservatives mouthed these same thoughts about minorities instead of suburbanites and rural residents, we would be blacklisted.

In my just released book, The Catholic Tide Continues to Turn, I note how the Left turned on Al Smith (the first Catholic standard bearer) after he formed the Liberty League in the mid and late 1930s and told Americans he could no longer support President Roosevelt. This startling development occurred after a number of questionable instances came to light including the Supreme Court Packing Case and the Roosevelt 1938 purge of Conservative Democrats. By 1940 unemployment was still at 14% and if had not been for World War II who knows how long unemployment would have remained in double digits.

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9 Responses to When the Believers Lose Their Faith In The Religion Of Big Government

  • 1. “President Barack Obama’s debate performances could never equal the expectations of the secular faithful. ”

    They could but only if the polls said he won. The content or reality is not important to the Leftist.

    2. “The writer for the Old Gray Lady states the Americans are somehow too dumb to become like Europeans and surrender their lives to government and not God. ”

    This is so Last Generation. Today’s Leftists have moved on to adoring Castro, Chavez and the Chinese Politburo with a longing look at Islamic jihadists.

    3. “Perhaps the President’s lackluster and uneven debate performance comes from a man who no longer believes in what he is selling.’

    He still believes it but he has always been a lazy goofoff expecting other people to translate his TOTUS talk into stirring deeds.

    4. “The Left has morphed into a powerful money machine.”

    The Leftists only hide beyond populist rhetoric, they always prefer the limousine. And they have always been part of the well to do class.

    5. “Socialist thinker Joseph Schumpter (Shortly after World War II) believed that Socialism could eventually win because Capitalism would give the people all of their material needs while weaning them off religion.”

    Sometimes academics top the Stupid list. He could have seen that Socialism would promptly take away all that Capitalism had provided.

    6. “Some on the Left see it all slipping away, they will never have the 2008 perfect storm opportunity at least within my lifetime.”

    Never underestimate the ability of termites.

  • Once again another informative post Rozin. As I have indicated in previous articles (and perhaps should have for this one,) I have always believed there are two sorts of leftists. The first being the utopians (small in number) they cling to the 1960s as their model. They are the ones I wrote of living at one time in cramped apartments and VW buses. However, the second group (and larger of the two) are the true radicals (often dressed as if they were indeed the man himself) those who adhere to the ideals of the French Revolution and the tactics of Saul Alinsky.

    An electoral loss for the radicals would be devestating, whereas the utopians would take it in stride. In some ways the Utopians still haven’t recovered from Bob Dylan going electric, the end of the Summer of Love, along with the demise of the Eugene McCarthy candidacy.

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  • I thank you for bringing the new god to the readers attention, I hope more are listing, because our Creator is watching this culture of greed and death spread. Do you think He is going to stand back and not get our attention about almost 4000 babies a day killed in the US out of greed ? Do you think if this continues and other things you have talked about He will allow, not make, something happen that will make 9-11 look like a spark, that will bring us back on our knee’s to Him ? JMJ

  • I get the feeling that if I sat down with Frank Rich for ten minutes I could explain politics to him. He understands that political movements adapt, and that predictions of impending ideological collapse are faulty. But he doesn’t apply that to his own thinking, that the moderate Republican is disappearing and that Republicans can’t win women or minorities.

    You don’t have to be a fortune-teller to see that in a two-party system, each party is always going to present itself as nearly in the middle but a bit over to one side. On a four-mile stretch of road, the best position for one gas station is at the two-mile marker. The best position for a rival gas station is at just about the two-mile marker, but a little up or down the road (to be the closest gas station for 50% of the market). Three or more gas stations, there are different strategies, but with two it’s inevitable. The same is true with politics.

  • Being a faithful Catholic means being neither Left nor Right. Sure, we are to reject the extreme statism of the Far Left, but we must also equally oppose Ayn Rand atheistic capitalism, which is nothing more than libertarian anarchy. Both ideologies challenge and contravene Catholic faith and morals.

    God bless for this terrific article!

  • One question as to the role of Big Government and consistent ideology. The author presumably opposes abortion in all forms and promotes the abolition of that sinister practice. I concur. How would the author go about achieving this goal? Would it be through the use of Government to interject itself in the medical field and forcibly ban abortion?

    So, if it is acceptable to prevent the deaths of the unborn through the use of Big Government, why is it also not acceptable to utilize the power of government to prevent deaths of living people outside of the womb, vis a vis health care reform?

  • Benjamin a very interesting question with regard to the role of government. The single most important role of government is to protect her citizens. We naturally think of a foreign invasion, or a terrorist attack (The War of 1812, or 9-11-01.) However, we don’t have to go to far into the realm of history to see an era when lawlessness had the nation living in fear. For example, because of Prohibition outlaws were roaming the countryside (John Dillinger, Ma Barker, Pretty Boy Floyd) because the cities were teaming with mobsters shooting it out over liquor territory. Law enforcement, much like their current compatriots in Mexico, were hopelessly outgunned. Something had to be done, which is why J Edgar Hoover established the FBI.

    In our modern era, though there are far fewer abortions (Thank God due to the relentless efforts of pro-life forces) somewhere between 1-2 million of our citizens are killed in abortion facilities. The Constitution established the courts to administer the laws and law enforcement to enforce the laws. Once Roe has properly run her course (it was wrongly argued and established in the first place) the courts and law enforcement will remedy the situation.

    As for Government Health Care, this is not promised by our forefathers, as was Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. If one says the government is responsible for you being happy one could argue health care could make you happy, or some illegal vice. Does that mean the government should provide you with that as well? This is a slipperly slope. The Catholic Church has always said health care is a right, but they never said it was a right to be provided for by the government. In the Renaissance era, the elite of the Church would provide hospital space for the poor and indigent. We should be our brothers keeper, not the state.

Great Depression II

Friday, October 19, AD 2012

8 Responses to Great Depression II

  • The economy stinks because of the policies Obama has pushed.

    The first Great Depression lasted until 1946 (let’s not name wartime conscription, rationing, deficit spending as full employment, economic growth or recovery) because of the big government control/New Deal, not because it was otherwise impossible to restore the economy.

  • The first Great Depression lasted until 1946

    It did not. Real domestic product per capita had by 1941 exceeded the value it had had in 1929. The labor market in 1941 was suffering from a sclerosis it had not in the earlier period.

    Great Depression II

    Again, the rate at which goods and services were being produced in this country declined by 27% between the summer of 1929 and the spring of 1933. Over a period of a year (spring of 2008 to spring 2009) that metric declined by 5% and then began slowly to increase again. The scale of these two sets of events differs too much to be using the same terminology.

  • “Great Depression II”

    Art in FDR’s first term the economy grew by a robust 7 percent each year erasing the losses incurred under Hoover’s term. The Great Depression II might be a misnomer, but only because Obama’s stewardship of the economy is worse than that of FDR’s as to economic growth during FDR’s first term.

  • Absent some great national crisis…

    No Oct. Surprises. If we can clear a few more
    days without a new conflict, other than a Biden moment, we should be in good shape for Tuesday. Please Almighty Father, confusion for our foes and VICTORY for America.

  • Given the enormous growth in govt between FDR and Obama it’s not easy to compare the effects of their policies on the same ruler. A major problem for Obama is that he is pursuing FDR like policies when the debt was already getting excessive and regulatory sclerosis was much more advanced at the time he took office. Like any strong medicine, leftist policies must be administered in small doses to be beneficial as opposed to destructive. Unfortunately the Dem party has a pronounced autocratic bent.

  • Art, I think there’s a problem with claiming the Depression ended in ’41 because of real GDP. GDP can increase during a war because we are producing a lot more stuff; the problem is, it’s not stuff that anybody wanted. The very fact that real GDP measures production but not sales aggravates the problem. If I make a billion bombs, GDP may go up, but it doesn’t mean we’re better off.
    Plus, during the Depression, deflation caused people to delay purchasing until prices reached their real value; their decision to withhold from purchasing made sense. They would not purchase

  • sorry, they would not purchase because it made sense not to. Low GDP was the necessary result of people responding to uncertainty. The war didn’t take that uncertainty away, it just took their money and they were forced to spend it in ways they would not have before, on guns and bombs and whatnot.

  • $1101 : 1947
    $1133 : 1946
    $1284 : 1945
    $1314 : 1944
    $1230 : 1943
    $1072 : 1942
    $915 : 1941
    $789 : 1940
    $732 : 1939
    $683 : 1938
    $713 : 1937
    $682 : 1936
    $607 : 1935
    $561 : 1934
    $509 : 1933
    $519 : 1932
    $601 : 1931
    $648 : 1930
    $716 : 1929

    Ike, the foregoing are the figures for real gross domestic product per capita expressed in 1937 currency units. You will note that the figures for 1939, 1940, and 1941 all exceed the figure for 1929. The war began in December of 1941 and the anticipatory expansion of the military in the Fall of 1940. The Depression was over before the war.

    As for ‘deficit spending’, public sector borrowing as a share of domestic product never exceeded 4% in any of the fiscal years years running from 1929 through 1941. Mr. Big Spender Roosevelt turned in two balanced budgets, which is two more than most of his successors have managed.

    You will also note the figure for 1947, the data for which were collected at a time when demobilization was complete. It exceeds the value for 1929 by 53%.

2 Responses to Libya Lies

I Was Watching a Townhall and a Fight Broke Out

Tuesday, October 16, AD 2012




Predictably Obama was very aggressive tonight.  Less predictably perhaps, Romney was just as aggressive.  Here are some thoughts:

1.  Wired Obama-Obama came loaded with talking points and spoke rapidly throughout the debate to get them all out.

2.  Face Time-Classic political theater with Obama and Romney having a few face to face clashes during the debate.

3.  Crowley Hearts Obama-Candy Crowley attempted to come to the rescue of the President in misstating that Obama blamed the Benghazi attack on terrorism in his rose garden statement.  That is incorrect.  The operative phrase in Obama’s statement:   Since our founding, the United States has been a nation that respects all faiths.  We reject all efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others.  But there is absolutely no justification to this type of senseless violence.  None.  The world must stand together to unequivocally reject these brutal acts.  Crowley’s intervention indicated that she was not a moderator but rather an Obama partisan.

4.  Romney the Good-Romney gave another good debate performance and I expect he will do just as well in the third debate.  If Obama is hoping for Romney to stumble or commit a gaffe, I think he will wait in vain.

5.  Boxing match-Although the back and forth got a bit tiresome to me after a while, I did like the way in which both candidates talked directly at each other.  Romney did make the mistake of asking too many questions of Obama, as if he were going to get any forthright answers.

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12 Responses to I Was Watching a Townhall and a Fight Broke Out

  • I do think Obama was pretty slick in getting in the 47% dig in his closing remarks without Romney being able to respond.

  • I just want to point out that the big question is not really how soon (or not) Obama put the label “act of terror” on Libya– to me the really big point is about his LACK of ACTION. he might have (or not) said the right things. He is a talker after all. But he should have immediately taken some kind of action in our defense; not even beginning investigating for how long!

  • “I just want to point out that the big question is not really how soon (or not) Obama put the label “act of terror” on Libya– to me the really big point is about his LACK of ACTION. he might have (or not) said the right things. He is a talker after all. But he should have immediately taken some kind of action in our defense; not even beginning investigating for how long!”

    Romney gonna have a golden opportunity to fact check exactly what Obama said and rub his nose in it during Monday’s debate because Monday’s debate is entirely on foreign policy and national security.

  • 1. #3. paved the way and helped her favorite consistently. No F & F n’ stuff needed.
    Bet he got a handle on his four year term in the resort where he was trained for days for ‘townhall’ – in all but sincerity.

    3. Unprofessional. Broke rules. Not a moderator. Can just hear the screams if the shoe were on the other foot. The rule book would be on the table with condemnations forever.

    6. Mitt Romney striving for clarity and fairness, but incumbent wasn’t as usual.

    4. Very strong man to be able to withstand the cheating.

    7. Obama’s free pass from the media spoiled him – resents being questioned while he can continually point at and blame what is diverse from him. Playground bully, backroom thug.

    10. Too bad these debates are reported like sports scores. People see behavior and character, which hopefully helps them sort through truth and lies.

  • To me it was all about tone. Obama sounds angry, petulant. Romney exudes calmness, stability — what you want in a crisis. These debates demonstrate why I’ve supported Romney since the primaries. He’s going to win.

  • Watched the debate. Despite some sayind Obama won, i can’t agree. In my high school years I was on our class debate team. In my 20’s i was the leader of our debatng team in Jaycees. The key to winning a debate, is making your point strongly and believably – even if it is wrong – and being able to effectively counter any rebuttal to your argument. Romney was head and shoulders above Obama again tonite, although Obama came out fighting – unlike last time, and gave a much better performance. But he focussed on trying to tell everyone what Romney was “:really” saying – he had no positives for his own vision for America – because his record in four years is dog poo.
    I won’t say that Romney has gained further momentum from this, but has certainly held up his gains from last debate. Next week, I think that he will be able to close the gate on O’Bumbler when the porkies that O’Bumbler came out with will be confirmed by the media at large – not just Sean Hannity 🙂
    I’m beginning to agree with your assessment Don – that Romney will win in a lesson to the Dems. We have been having a debate here on our local Catholic blog about the US elections – and some are saying “so what?”
    Thepoint is, that what happens in the US has a major influence in the rest of the world – in particluar the western Anglo-Saxon- Celtic world, because we hold a common heritage and mindset different to the rest of world cultures, and the US, whether people like it or not, is the leader in this culture.
    I do really hope that Romney kicks O’Bumbler’s arse (ass in ‘mericaspeak) 🙂

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  • As long as Obama is defeat, that is all that matters. I am glad Romnry acquitted himself well again. I see many main stream news outlets saying Obama won, but they are liberal and that is to be expected.

  • I was walking Buddy (try to be the person your dog thinks you are) and snoring.

    Couldn’t bring myself to watch the Yanks roll over, either.

    Glenn Beck (on Imus) said, “Romney kindly emasculated Obama.” heh

    Old Chinese adage, “A liar is not believed even when he tells the truth.” Obama and his imbecilic worshipers have divorced themselves from facts and truth.

    Re: energy: Mitt missed his opportunity to ask why gas prices are so high during slow driving season, and for Obama’s advice to Americans choosing between buying gas to get to their jobs or eating.

    Benghazzi. . . 100+ recent violent episodes . . . repeated requests for security upgrades . . . spontaneous protest . . . 200 gomers armed with AK’s and RPG’s . . . for five days it was caused by an obscure YouTube video . . . video producer still in jail . . .

  • “video producer still in jail” . . . thanks for that info.

  • The amazing thing is how little discussion is being had in these debates and in the election in general about Obamacare. One would think that the signal achievement of Obama’s first term – the one that our esteemed Vice President called a “big f’n deal” would be trumpeted a bit more by President Obama. Curious.

  • Re: Obamacare and its invisibility

    The Left simply goes “underground” when there is public opposition to anything they are doing. They let the bureaucracy and activist judges carry the ball forward. The same thing is going on with the EPA etc. The Repubs have a candidate who doesn’t want to mention Obamacare that much either.

The Data and Demographics That Detail Why Romney Will Defeat Obama in Ohio

Sunday, October 7, AD 2012

 I am going to take a break from promoting my just released book, The Catholic Tide Continues to Turn to write about another interest of mine; election polling and demographics in my home state of Ohio. Lately my dander has been raised more than once by polls which are totally inept in their sampling rational. This article will attempt to explain why at this point Governor Mitt Romney is in the driver’s seat in my home state. Full disclosure; I did not vote for Governor Romney in the GOP primary, my vote went to Senator Rick Santorum. Also until the mid 1990s I was a conservative Democrat; my political work began in the 1980s as in intern in the Ohio State House and then continued for the Democratic Leadership Council on Capitol Hill in 1994-95. I saw no hope for conservative Democrats like myself after my stint in Washington DC. I view myself not as a Republican, but a conservative.

The 2008 General Election was a perfect storm for Democrats across the country and Ohio was no exception. By 2010, the gains the Democrats made had evaporated and the GOP returned to the levels it had enjoyed in the 1980s. However, political polling across the country has not reflected this change. Obviously this makes a huge difference in Midwestern swing areas, especially suburban locations, the area of most states that continue to grow, even if that state’s total growth is stagnant.

For example in Ohio the area surrounding Franklin County (Columbus) and the area surrounding Hamilton County (Cincinnati) are the fastest growing areas of the state. These areas generally go GOP 65%-35%. Conversely, the Democratic strongholds of Lucas (Toledo,) Cuyahoga (Cleveland,) Summit (Akron,) and Mahoning (Youngstown) are the areas of the state that have seen a freefall in residents since the late 1970s.

While many people are aware of this statistic, one area few seem to realize is the age demographic, Democratic voters are dying off faster than the younger (40 and 50 something) Reagan era GOP voters of the fast growing GOP strongholds of suburban Columbus and Cincinnati.

Now let’s take a look at raw voter counts in Ohio and what we can expect after the polls close at 7:30 PM on November 6. A cursory glance of the 2004 and 2008 election results in the Democratic strongholds in the northern part of the state might make one reason that a serious error had occurred. How could Massachusetts Senator John Kerry possibly get more votes than the first African American standard bearer, then Illinois Senator Barack Obama in areas like Cuyahoga County which is over 30% African-American, the highest percentage in the state?

The answer is simple, thousands of voters had died or moved from that area of the state in those four years, and many more thousands have done so since the economic meltdown of 2008. For example in 1980 Cuyahoga County had 1,500,000 residents compared to 1,280,000 in 2010, Lucas County had 471,000 in 1980 compared to 441.000 in 2010 and Mahoning County had 290,000 residents in 1980, compared to 239,000 in 2010. Many left for southern and western states. As recent as a few days ago (early October 2012) election officials had reported a huge drop off in eligible voters for this Democratic rich area of the state.    Let’s give the President the benefit of the doubt and say his numbers in Cleveland, Toledo and Youngstown only drop 5% (due to shifting demographics) this is still a nightmare scenario for the Obama-Biden ticket when one realizes that Romney-Ryan ticket will certainly gain at least 5% in the Columbus and Cincinnati fast growing suburban areas.

Now let’s take a look at the GOP strongholds of suburban Columbus and Cincinnati. In 1980 Butler County (outside of Cincinnati) had 258, 000 voters compared to 368,000 in 2010 and Warren County directly north of Cincinnati had 99,000 residents in 1980 versus 212,000 in 2010. Let’s look at Columbus, Delaware County which for years was the fastest growing county in the Midwest had 53,000 residents in 1980 compared to 174,000 in 2010 and Fairfield County had 93,000 residents in 1980 versus 146,000 in 2010.

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17 Responses to The Data and Demographics That Detail Why Romney Will Defeat Obama in Ohio

  • Too bad none of what you cite will make any difference, since we have a criminal administration willing, and certainly capable of stealing this election. And should this not succeed, there are Obama’s minions – The Muslim Brotherhood, ACORN, The New Black Panters, etc., ready to riot, claiming WE stole the election. Then, of course, the Dictator in Chief will use his self-appointed powers to declare martial law, and void the election.

  • That all worked real well for the Democrats in 2010. Most of the states now have Republican governors, including all the swing states. This election is not going to be decided by the margin of fraud.

  • The thing that has me worried, is that in our town–once a bastion of conservatism–there are Obama/Biden signs everywhere. I’ve never, ever seen this many signs for a Democrat president. Heck, I’ve never seen that many signs for a Democrat anything. It could simply be that a local Catholic (“seamless garment” type) is running for state house on the Democratic ticket. She is very well organized and well known among the liberals, social justice community and her own parish (which may still be the largest in our diocese although it’s population has been declining over the past few years).

  • “in our town, once a bastion of conservatism, there are Obama-Biden signs everywhere”

    Well, I’m seeing far FEWER Obama signs in Central Illinois today than I saw four years ago. I’m seeing plenty of signs for local level Democratic candidates (Congress, state legislature) but hardly any for Obama. I don’t see all that many Romney signs either, though.

  • Re: Edie Eason – I wouldn’t put anything past Comrade Barry, or more precisely the Axelrod/Peoples’ Democratic Party inner cluster. The phrase “cyber security” keeps popping up lately . . . I won’t really relax until the Oath of Office is taken by a non-incumbent on Jan 20, 2013. And even then I’m not going to be totally off guard.

  • From Instapundit:
    “DEMOCRATS GONE WILD: Obama supporters ‘key’ cars displaying pro-Romney bumper stickers.” …
    Posted at 11:59 am by Ed Driscoll

    Young, footloose, and ‘care’free under the influence of media and – well … .

  • @Elaine:

    Thanks; need the boost. Think I will chalk it up to union politics (the unions have a proposal on the ballot. An important one) and the local democrats being amazingly organized. One of the funniest yard displays I’ve seen though is one for Obama, the democratic state representative, and then our representative to Washington. Obama and the local democrat are hard left; our representative to Washington is well to the right of middle.

  • Thanks WR Aiken, I did see that and that is the reason I wrote this article. I did not want on Election Night to say, I told you so when I didn’t do anything about it. My article is an attempt to spell out everything I have been seeing, reading and hearing around me. As I wrote in the article, I dare say Ohio isn’t the only state that fits the criteria of which I wrote.

    The anti-suburb and anti-rural pitch has been the clarion call of the far left for some time. This is not your Flower Power Left but a more aggressive and wealthly Left which I describe in my book; “The Catholic Tide Continues to Turn.” Whereas the old left admired the Berrigan Brothers, Father Cool and Sister Sunshine; this new left is fimly in the camp of Saul Alinsky and Richard Dawkins.

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  • Hopefully there is political action aimed at convincing Catholic democrat voters to abstain from voting for Nobama. Even if they vote an otherwise democrat ticket. Direct action outside RC church’s on Sunday should urge Catholics to abstain on behalf of the Church. This could peel off enough votes to win the Ohio. Lets face it; blind loyalty prevents many old-timers from voting for any GOP canidate. But appealing to their conscience & love of Church might sway them & reduce turnout for the vile Nobama.

  • _________________________________________________________________________________



    “The question to ask is this: Are any of the candidates of either party, or independents, standing for something that is intrinsically evil, evil no matter what the circumstances? If that’s the case, a Catholic, regardless of his party affiliation, shouldn’t be voting for such a person.” – Archbishop William Lori, Diocese of Baltimore, Maryland

    Journalist: “is it ever licit for a Catholic to vote for a pro-abortion candidate? Is it ever valid?”

    “No. You can never vote for someone who favors absolutely the right to choice of a woman to destroy a human life in her womb. Where you don’t have a candidate who is proposing to eliminate all abortion (voters may) choose the candidate who will most limit this grave evil in our country. But you could never justify voting for a candidate who not only does not want to limit abortion but believes it should be available to everyone.” – Cardinal Raymond Burke

    “I certainly can’t vote for someone who’s either pro-choice or pro-abortion. Jesus tells us very clearly that if we don’t help the poor, we’re going to go to hell. But Jesus didn’t say the government has to take care of them, or that we have to pay taxes to take care of them. Those are prudential judgments. You can’t say that somebody’s not Christian because they want to limit taxation. To say that it’s somehow intrinsically evil like abortion doesn’t make any sense at all.” – Archbishop Charles Chaput, Diocese of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

    “One might argue for different methods to address the needs of the poor, to feed the hungry and to solve the challenges of immigration, but these are prudential judgments, not intrinsic evils… You need to think and pray very carefully about your vote, because a vote for a candidate who promotes actions or behaviors that are intrinsically evil and gravely sinful makes you morally complicit and places the eternal salvation of your own soul in jeopardy.” – Bishop Thomas Paprocki, Diocese of Springfield, Illinois

    “Other pieces of legislation touch on the building of a good and just society and may be open to prudential judgement, … (but) ‘Forming Consciences’ tells us that in the political debate today there is no other issue that rises to this level of moral certitude: Abortion is always wrong. To support political platforms that protect so-called ‘abortion rights’ is to participate in the inexorable conclusion: many, many innocent unborn children will be killed. Sometimes a single issue will be so important it overrides a whole range of lesser issues.” – Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington, D.C.

    “Could a Catholic in good conscience vote for a candidate who supports legalized abortion when there is another choice of another candidate who does not? Could a voter’s preference for the candidate’s positions on the pursuit of peace, economic policies, health care, etc., overcome a candidates support for legalized abortion? The Catholic voter must ask and answer the question: What could possibly be a proportionate reason for the more than 45 million children killed by abortion? We cannot conceive of such a proportionate reason.”- Archbishop Joseph Naumann & Bishop Roger Finn, Diocese of Kansas City, Kansas

    “In all of Church teaching, the Life issues, particularly the protection of unborn children against the crime of abortion, has to be our greatest priority. This is an ongoing slaughter of 4,000 children every single day for the last 40 years. If we support and promote persons who have pledged to extend it and intensify the slaughter, then we bear great responsibility with them.” – Bishop Robert Finn, Diocese of Kansas City, Kansas

    “A committed and convinced Catholic is always pro-life on the issue of abortion and euthanasia, and that includes in the voting booth.” – Archbishop Dennis Schnurr, Diocese of Cincinnati, Ohio

    “The failure to protect and defend life in its most vulnerable stages renders suspect any claims to the ‘rightness’ of positions in other matters affecting the poorest and least powerful.” – _U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops

  • The bishops calling to vote for “life” means that Catholics should vote for candidates that support quality life for impoverished, medically fragile, disabled, illiterate, marginalized, disenfranchised, and homeless in the way Jesus served humanity, right? Voting for candidates that support “pro-life” are the candidates who work to make things equitable and fair for people who are not born into privilege or luck. I am a Catholic “pro-life” who is supporting the Obama/Biden ticket because they support “life” for all Americans regardless of the way they come into this world.

  • “because they support “life” for all Americans regardless of the way they come into this world.”

    Actually they are against a great many Americans coming into this world at all, those whose mothers decide to slay them through child murder euphemized with the term abortion.

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We Apologize For Breathing

Friday, September 21, AD 2012

Hattip to AllahPundit at Hot Air.  Your tax dollars at work.  The State Department is paying for the above video to run in Pakistan.  I find it breathtaking in its complete incomprehension.  The foolish anti-Mohammed video is merely a pretext for the Jihadists to carry on their war with us.  Obama and Clinton could apologize from now until Doomsday and it would have no impact, except to convince watching muslims that the United States leadership is weak and confused which is a completely accurate assessment of the Obama administration abroad.

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15 Responses to We Apologize For Breathing

  • Liberals simply do not understand. We have one at work. He was complaining about a totally separate subject: that Romney wants to open up more fossil fuel supply that will pollute the atmosphere. I tried explaining that Obama’s appointment of an anti-nuclear power activist as head of the US NRC and his undermining of US commercial nuclear power (the only viable alternative to fossil fuel) are even worse. But the truth didn’t matter. His eyes are fixed on the Obamessiah, yet a better technical engineer or more dedicated one I have yet to meet.

    I am convinced that liberalism is a disease of the mind that blinds the self to the truth.

  • I’m being charitable here. The liberals running us into the mud are idiotic, unprincipled cowards. It’s why they lost the Middle East and North Africa (now regime-sponsored terrorist recruiting centers and training camps), Africa, and are losing the global terror war against us.

    Paul, the useless idiots are also at war with coal, electricity generation, oil (e.g., ban Keystone pipeline), and the (evil, unjust) private sector.

    The one campaign promise Obama has kept: skyrocketing energy prices.

  • What we can and cannot do in the Near East and adjacent areas is quite constrained by costs and (with regard to certain functions) a deficit of capable and loyal personnel. A great deal of this is just political tides you cannot manipulate readily, certainly not with the clandestine services we have (in which Aldrich Ames was promoted how many times?). That having been said, a security cordon for diplomats is certainly something we can afford and that is what they did not supply to the departed Mr. Stevens and others. Instead of owning up to that they give us this. As for the odious Mr. Morsi, a reminder that we have a long memory might do for the time being. With our fiscal house in better order we might just be able to graduate to ‘nice little canal you have there; pity if someone took it from you’.

    Please note with regard to your second video that murderous intent applies primarily to the Jews and is regarded indulgently by the twerps currently in the employ of Ron Unz and Taki Theodorogetdrunkfalldownchaseskirts and also by the soi-disant Catholic peace-and-justice types (see Jonathan Tobin’s recent brief critique of Margaret Steinfels commentary).

  • “Please note with regard to your second video that murderous intent applies primarily to the Jews”

    I can think of a lot of Copts and other Christian Arabs who have the misfortune to have been born in the Middle East Art who would beg to differ as to that sentiment.

  • You are wrong – the video would have worked if Madam Hillary had worn a Hijab and covered herself appropriately. What was she thinking!?!

    Actually, I am with the Muslims on covering Hillary from head to toe – finally, common ground we can work from!

  • In his statement, the pres said, forgive me if I get the words wrong as I’ve listened several times, the that he objects to the demograte??? of all faith beliefs.
    I wonder how he can say that when he and his administration are basicly at war with the Catholic Church and other Christian faiths with all these mandates that go against the moral values of the faith of others. Is he in fact saying he will not stand for anyone to make comments or other fourms of communication against the Muslim religion but will promote it against Christian religions.

  • “wonder how he can say that when he and his administration are basically at war with the Catholic Church and other Christian faiths ”

    We don’t form murderous mobs and hunt and kill American ambassadors. Additionally I think Obama views Islam through the usual liberal prism where colorful members of the Third World can do no wrong and America can do no right. It is as condescending to them in its way as any Brit colonel in the nineteenth century ranting about WOGS in India. On the other hand, Christians in general, and Catholics in particular, are viewed as enemy number one, always standing in the way of the building of a global secular utopia. (I realize the glaring contradictions that these beliefs contain, but I do think that is how Obama and many secular liberals rationalize in their own minds the disparate treatment they mete out to Muslims and Christians.)

  • WHY do we reject this video’s content and message? On what grounds does the US government take a stand on a particular religious message? The video, as I understand it, was a privately-funded piece of art with a religious commentary. The President can personally condemn it, and Congress can pass a resolution condemning it, but seriously, how in the world can the US government state a position on it?

  • I can think of a lot of Copts and other Christian Arabs who have the misfortune to have been born in the Middle East Art who would beg to differ as to that sentiment.

    Agreed they have been on the receiving end of more abuse the last 37 years. The aspirations the Arab world’s enrages have toward the Jews remain unfulfilled due to Israel’s military.

  • Yes this apologizing thing is out of control. Jesus would have NEVER apologized for anything especially for the sake of an attempt at peace.

  • Last time I looked Bob Obama wasn’t Jesus, although I think some of his more deluded followers may be confused on that point. Anyone who believes these apologies will do anything other than to encourage Jihadist attacks, needs to put down the crack pipe and take a cold shower, stat.

  • It is correct that Jesus would never ever apologize. He is God. God is without apology. So when he had a fit in the temple, overturning the tables of the money changers and whipping them out, he did so without apology. When he condemned Tyre and Sidon, he did do without apology. When he ripped up one side and down the other of that society’s self-righteous leaders (can you spell social justice Democrat?), he did so without apology. When he told the disciples to arm themselves with a sword just before Judas met him to betray him, he did so without apology. And when he told Pontius Pilate that his kingdom was not of this world, and Pilate would have no power except what God gave him (something Obama would do well to remember), he did so without apology.

    No apology for righteousness, holiness, virtue, integrity, honor ad true justice! None! Not then. Not now. Not ever. And Jesus Christ will one day return to Earth on that great white horse with that great sword coming out of his mouth exactly as Revelation 19 explains, and without apology there will be hell to pay. You get that, Bob?

  • The pres has different views as to what needs apoligies for and what not – we know he is sending out apology messages to the Muslin nations but now a word of apology to Christians over a pice of art of Christ Crucified covered with urine, that is acceptable to him and no apology to Christians needed or condemnation of the artist.
    I made a comment to others that after the Pres took office he went to Egypy on his ‘apology tour’ to the Muslim nations, maybe he needs to go back there right now, stand in the middle of all those Muslims yelling ‘Kill Americans’ while they burn Our Flag and apologize to them again, in person.

  • This is one of the most shameful moments in American history. When before have we cowered before our enemies like this?
    What Carter began in the Muslim world, Obama will finish. What started in Iran now infects the entire region.
    He has no idea what he is unleashing.
    Others have pointed out that what the United States has repeatedly shown to the Muslim world through its actions is that we fear only one thing: Allah.
    Oh, the things they have observed.

    Americans troops don’t dare chase Jihadi’s into our mosques.
    Americans will burn Bibles at their military bases so they can’t be used to corrupt the faithful.
    They treat the Koran with the respect it deserves, wearing gloves when they touch it and never putting it on the ground.
    When Mohammad (insert appropriate verbage here) is shown disrespect, the nation’s very own leader buys time on our televisions to apologize.

    Bush was so very wrong. We are at war with Islam. And we are losing.

  • Impeach, try and convict the Secretary of State.

    It’s the only way to be sure.

Declaring War on the Church

Thursday, August 9, AD 2012

Well the above video from the Romney campaign removes all doubt that the HHS Mandate is going to be front and center in the fall campaign.  Obama was campaigning with Sandra Fluke yesterday, as Ed Morrissey at Hot Air details here.  Obama’s war on the Catholic Church, and his attempt to promote schism within the Church, may play a decisive role in the swing states like Ohio that will decide this election.

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27 Responses to Declaring War on the Church

  • Someone was there interviewing people as they left the Fluke/Obama rally. It’s an amusing video.

  • Thank you, Donald, for this post!

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  • Actually everything is A-OK.

    President Obama, Archbishop Dolan and very likely Mitt Romney will be attending the annual Al Smith Catholic Charities dinner together. It should be a great photo op and good laughs all around!

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  • The laugh will be on Obama at that dinner I suspect. Carter when he appeared in 1980 was booed while Reagan was received with warmth. We shall see.

  • I’ve got to tune out until election day. News that 2012 is shaping up to be a replay of 2008 is too depressing for words. I can’t begin to imagine why my fellow Americans voted for Mr. Obama to begin with, much less why they’d do so again. Here we are though, again watching a GOP challenger slip in the polls. This time though, it is astounding that we have an utter failure of policy and the President’s lead grows daily. Remind me again how voting for Santorum was foolish because he couldn’t win a General campaign.

    Give some good news guys. I’m sure I’m not the only loyal reader who needs it!

  • Sure, check out Rasmussen. He is the only pollster who polls 15000 people each month in a huge survey to determine party strength. His polls over the past month have usually shown Romney with about a two point lead:

    His party id poll currently shows the Republicans with a slight advantage over the Democrats, which is death for the Democrats in the coming election. Most other election polls that you see floating around are junk with no likely voter screen and usually something like a D6-D9 advantage for the Democrats in the percent of people sampled, which is simply absurd this year. Junk data makes for junk polls.

  • Wow. “Be Not Afraid!” was an eloquent choice for Mitt Romney to quote the Pope. Yes he is trying to appeal to Catholic voters, and I hope Catholic voters listen, stay informed be active and pray. Be Not Afraid.

    We can Not be afraid of what almost seems cataclysmic around us culturally and politically.

    When I hear those words and think of young Karol W lying face down hiding from Nazis – he knew what he was talking about when he said not to be afraid.
    And the brave people of Ukraine, Latvia — saints- who kept their faith in the face of real evil. The little prayer book in my purse is called “Mary Save Us” – smuggled out of Siberia– the author, Adele, a catechism teacher, did die in the camp.. in the 1950’s.

    I hope voters take this war on religion seriously. All you eastern europeans now in heaven pray for us.

  • Don,

    I’ve seen many other polls showing the opposite.

    I still think Obama is going to win in a squeaker, but I hope to be proven dead wrong.

  • Anzlyne: “All you eastern europeans now in heaven pray for us.” All the saints and angels in heaven, pray for us.”

  • Tito, you have to look at the poll internals. Gallup, which is the best poll after Rasmussen, shows Obama with a one or two point lead usually over the past 30 days. Polls which show Obama with a large lead are simply junk with too many Democrats sampled and usually no likely voter screen.

  • The communist government officials raped Lech Walesa’s daughters while he waited in the next room listening to their screams. Only the voters can stop Obama’s rape of little children’s conscience rights. Walesa knows the evil and Walesa is endorsing for Romney.

  • “The communist government officials raped Lech Walesa’s daughters while he waited in the next room listening to their screams.”

    Source Mary? I have never read that.

  • Gallup polls registered voters, not likely voters. Rasmussen is the major which uses a likely voter screen as a matter of course. I think NPR has attempted that as well.

  • Just which is the constituency to whom Sandra Fluke would appeal?

  • Correct Art. Assuming a two point decrease for Obama in a switch to a likely voter screen, Rasmussen and Gallup have been very close in their numbers this cycle.

  • “Just which is the constituency to whom Sandra Fluke would appeal?”

  • I got a call today from a pollster asking a bazillion questions about mainly local and state races, about name recognition for various local/state candidates and whether I had a favorable or unfavorable opinion of them, etc. I wasn’t completely decided about several of the races she asked about, and didn’t really have any opinion on some of the people she mentioned, but when she asked how likely I was to vote, I said “very likely” and when she asked whether I would vote for Romney or Obama I said “definitely Romney.” So maybe I just nudged the polls a tiny fraction of a point in the “red” direction….

  • I am interested in whether there is a poll taking demographic – if that is a correct term for polls about which I agree with G-Veg – that counts people who decline participation.

    A month or so ago, there was a call from someone who said they were from Gallup and I declined participation. Maybe caller ID would be helpful. I’ve seen some very long alpha-numeric ID’s, city-state ID’s, and other generic words (like service) and am wary.

    Just a glimmering hope that many may remain silent in resolve in this intimidating atmosphere, such as when using lawn signs or bumper stickers causes an occasion for sin for someone.

  • Lord Courtney famously remarked that there are lies, damned lies and statistic.

    It is worth noting that the noble lord was not merely an excellent mathematician (he was Senior Wrangler at Cambridge) but a President of the Royal Statistical Society (1897 – 1899)

  • War on the Church?

    Don’t worry about the Church.

    Worry about Obama.

    They declared war on drugs 50 or 60 years. Who won that one?

  • Donald McClarey says: “The communist government officials raped Lech Walesa’s daughters while he waited in the next room listening to their screams.”

    Source Mary? I have never read that.

    Ask Lech Walesa. Walesa is the most reliable source.

  • Link to where you read this Mary. If you do not I will delete the comments referencing this. I have a strong love of history and I will not allow statements like that to remain on this blog if they are not based on fact.

  • I am sorry Donald, I do mean to be rude. I saw Lech Walesa on television weeping, his hands to his eyes, confessing what he had endured, and this is what he confessed: that “the communists took his minor daugters into the next room and he heard them screaming”. This happened when the communists tried to break Walesa and Solidarnocs (sp) the Gdansk shipyard solidarity encouraged by John Paul II, something one does not forget decades later. The fact that Walesa is still alive and can vouch for the truth of this is relevant. Otherwise you may do as needs to be done.

  • That is fine Mary. I am sure you heard what you heard. I can find no reference to the incident but I will let the comments stand based upon what you heard Walesa say.

  • Thank you, Donald. I am thinking too, of Jerzy Popielusko (sp), the Cathoic priest whom the communists beat and drowned, who is now up for canonization. I am going to continue to look as this is very relevant to Obama’s election. Obama is a man who will not permit people the use of their free will and their conscience and I see no difference between a war on God, a war on the Catholic Church and a war on the individual person made in the image and likeness of God. There is a very enlightening episode by Fulton J. Sheen entitled “The Glory of Being an American.” Bishop Sheen says that persons make up “WE, the people”. Communism is made up of “the masses”. When the individual no longer has any value to the party, he ceases to exist. The communist party error in that logic is that the communist party did not give the human being existence and therefore cannot take existence away.

Great Depression II

Thursday, August 2, AD 2012

Al Lewis at MarketWatch uses the D word to describe the perpetual lousy economy we have been living through the past four years:

There is nothing more depressing than hearing about a new recession when you haven’t fully recovered from the last one. I take heart in suspecting that in a still-distant future, historians will look back with clarity and call this whole rotten period a depression.

The precise definition of a depression, of course, remains as debatable as anything else in the field of economics. By some definitions, it is a long-term slump in economic activity, often characterized by unusually high unemployment, a banking crisis, a sovereign-debt crisis, surprising bankruptcies and other horrible symptoms we can find in the headlines almost every day.

It is easy to avoid seeing all of these events as constituting a depression if you somehow have kept your livelihood intact all this time. But it’s important to remember that not everyone has to stand in a bread line during a depression.

Nearly one out of seven Americans receives food stamps, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. That’s more than 44 million people. If they all stood in a line and someone photographed them using black-and-white film, they easily could be mistaken for people from the 1930s. Instead, they go to a grocery store and spend their credits like money. There isn’t even a social stigma to make them stand out as any more glum or destitute than anybody else.

Last week, the Associated Press reported that America’s poverty rate likely has hit levels not seen since the 1960s. Surveying several economists and academicians, the wire service predicted the official poverty rate would come in as high as 15.7% when the Census Bureau releases it in September. That would wipe out all the gains of President Lyndon Johnson’s War on Poverty.

Poverty is another word for joblessness, and our economy hasn’t been generating enough decent-paying jobs for many years. Globalization, technology, outsourcing, immigration and the schemes of financiers have taken their toll. No one is certain when jobs will come back, and many of the jobs that remain don’t pay anywhere near what, say, your average failing CEO gets paid.

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48 Responses to Great Depression II

  • In the interests of precision, real domestic product in 1933 was 27% lower than it had been in 1929. By contrast, the rate at which goods and services were being produced in this country declined by 5% over the period running from the 2d quarter of 2008 to the 2d quarter of 2009. It has seen slow growth since. The dimensions are just entirely different.

    The difficulties we face are sclerosis in the labor market, inhibition on the part of entrepreneurs generated by the tremendous public sector deficit, and an incipient disaster when the bond market cuts the government off at the bar. Obama has no plan to address any of this because he is all about striking public poses and actually developing and publicizing plans would offend various Democratic Party client groups, would offend the holders of various and sundry ideological shticks, and render him vulnerable to public attacks of the opposition. The trouble is, it is not at all clear that the opposition has any concerns other than public relations either.

  • I think Paul Ryan’s budget Art would indicate a will among Republicans to at least start addressing the real issues confronting us, and not to simply continue writing hot checks until we can no longer do so. In regard to Great Depression II, I think our situation long term is more precarious than Great Depression I. In Great Depression I the fundamentals of the economy were always sound and FDR was correct that fear, a collapse of public confidence, was the primary culprit in regard to getting the economy up and running with investors willing to take risks again. Our present situation will require the much harder task of basically weaning a large part of the population off government dependence, a task that I suspect will be as pleasant nationally as the individual travails of a heroin addict going cold turkey.

  • Donald: More reason for the “depression ” is that Obama takes and takes and takes. Make Obama return the stimulus packages and the economy will correct itself. It is the economy as raided, abused and cheated by Obama. The word I wanted to use is not publicly admissible. Make Obama give us back what he stole. Every bill passed by Congress is a blank check for the government and a bottomless pit for the people. For this reason alone, Affordable Healthcare must be overturned.

    Czar Nicholas II was replaced because he saw his people starving in the byways and did nothing. Obama is not so stupid. Obama feeds the people with out taxdollars and steals the credit for it, demanding adulation for handing over our money to the hungry and the greedy, the not so hungry. WE can do this ourselves without having to worship at the feet of a mortal, fallible, inhuman being.

  • I have problems with this sort of designation because I don’t know what the Great Depression felt like. I look around today and I see food stamps and closed businesses and iPhones. I know that there was some prosperity in the 1930’s, and that there’s a sense of despair now, but I just don’t know if they’re comparable.

    I remember the 1970’s, and it seemed worse then. Unemployment and inflation. You could argue that the main consequence of inflation was devaluation of property, and that the housing market collapse in recent years has had a similar effect. We also had gas shortages though. When you can’t drive your car even though you’re willing to pay the market price for gasoline, that’s a different level of economic failure.

    OK, I’ve got a thought – it doesn’t feel as bad as the 1930’s or the 1970’s because you don’t see people chipping in for each other. I’m thinking of hitchhikers, panhandlers, et cetera. Is that because things haven’t gotten so bad, or because our selfishness and fear of others are worse than they used to be, or because government does a more effective job of keeping the equivalent of charitable acts invisible? I don’t know.

  • Pinky: “OK , I’ve got a thought – it doesn’t feel as bad as the 1930?s or the 1970?s because you don’t see people chipping in for each other. I’m thinking of hitchhikers, panhandlers, et cetera. Is that because things haven’t gotten so bad, or because our selfishness and fear of others are worse than they used to be, or because government does a more effective job of keeping the equivalent of charitable acts invisible? I don’t know.”
    Wihtout God and the Ten Commandments, some people applaud and enjoy the violence of crime wrecked on their neighbors. It has become unreal. The victim is dead and so, who cares, maybe God cares. Justice and peace have been banned from the public square. In Poland, a hitchhiker was given a green booklet, which the person who gave him a ride signed, and the govenment paid for the ride. In America, one would never be seen again until one’s body was found, after all, if the victim hadn’t been born he could not have been murdered. It was all the victim’s mother’s fault for not aborting him and now, that he has caused all this trouble for the police, let us forget about him as though he had never existed. God is watching. God is counting. Let us have public recourse to God in our culture and all else will right itself.

  • In regard to Great Depression II, I think our situation long term is more precarious than Great Depression I. In Great Depression I the fundamentals of the economy were always sound and FDR was correct that fear, a collapse of public confidence, was the primary culprit in regard to getting the economy up and running with investors willing to take risks again.

    No clue to what you are referring when you say ‘sound’. Again, there had been a catastrophic decline in output over the previous 3.5 years when Roosevelt took office. The only economic contractions of comparable dimensions that have been seen in recent decades occurred in war torn states, or during the tremendous dislocations which attended the dismantling of some of the command economies in Eastern Europe, or in Argentina during 1999-2004. It is true that the public sector balance sheet was in much better shape during the Depression. However, the labor market was suffering a tremendous sclerosis.

    The last time I checked, Mr. Ryan’s plan (is it updated?) reflected the Republican Party’s collective addlement about tax rates, hence incorporated decades worth of federal deficits.

    It is not so much “federal dependency”, per se. The programs most injurious to the social ethic of the slums are the ones with modest dimensions or ones most easily repealed or replaced. The problem you have is the wretched structure of financing medical care, which has promoted escalating allocations of available resources (public and private) and dead weight loss through a hopeless gordian knot of cross subsidies. What does the Democratic Party do? Pass legislation to make matters even worse.

  • “No clue to what you are referring when you say ‘sound’.”

    The factories and our resources were all intact Art, and we had a work force that was more productive than any of our competitors. The US was the dominant industrial power on the planet before and after the Great Depression. It was all a crisis of confidence and not fundamental problems with our system. My theory has always been that the New Deal retarded our recovery from the Great Depression, although I give FDR high marks for restoring national morale which was of help in the recovery, even if almost all of his economic policies were wrongheaded. Now we have an economy where the public sector rests like a boulder on a private economy struggling to bear up under the weight.

    “The last time I checked, Mr. Ryan’s plan (is it updated?) reflected the Republican Party’s collective addlement about tax rates”

    The solution Art is not to raise taxes but rather to slash spending to the bone. That solution is coming whether we opt for it or not, but it will be far less catastrophic if we implement it, rather than having a de facto National Bankruptcy occur in the public sector.

  • Don, I tend to agree. The question should never be why does a recession occur; it’s why does an economy ever work in the first place. That’s why Adam Smith was interested in the wealth of nations. Wealth is an abnormality.

    An economic crisis is caused when too many people look down and realize they’re walking on a tightrope. (The modern anti-capitalist would say that they look down and realize that they’re walking on air, Wile E. Coyote style.) The utter absurdity is that one guy can put up a factory making ball bearings, and convince people to show up and run machines if he gives them pieces of paper. And how did he put up the factory? He promised someone else pieces of paper. And what’s he going to do with the ball bearings? He thinks someone else will take them in exchange for pieces of paper. Ridiculous. Getting people to buy into the whole game is tough. An economic recovery takes place when you re-convince people to play.

    There was one area where the American capacity to produce dropped during the 1930’s, and that was agriculture.

  • What ended the Great Depression was the Second World War

  • What ended the Great Depression was the Second World War

    No. Military conscription and ramping up war production flushed out the plaque in the labor market here. Per capita income had by 1941 returned to pre-lapsarian levels in the United States, and then some. Recovery of income levels was earlier in Britain and on the eve of the 2d World War the British labor market was in about the same shape it had been in 1929 (bad shape but not bad shape induced by the financial crises). I would have to re-check the stats, but if I recall correctly, the country that never recovered (saw a loss in production levels not later recouped) was France. France was also very committed to a gold-standard.

  • Donald wrote: “The factories and our resources were all intact Art, and we had a work force that was more productive than any of our competitors. The US was the dominant industrial power on the planet before and after the Great Depression.”

    I don’t know hardly anything about economics except to balance my checkbook. However, working in the nuclear energy industry, I find what Donald is implying about the current American infrastructure to be correct. For example, we have no great foundries capable of manufacturing the large Reactor Pressure Vessels, Steam Generators, and Pressurizers that building a nuclear power plant requires. Japan and Spain provide such vessels. Even much of the instrumentation and controls is designed and manufactured overseas (e.g., Hitachi, Siemens, etc.). And Westinghouse, once the premiere US nuclear energy company, is now owned by Toshiba. And the expertise to do these nuclear things now lies with the Red Chinese (who intend on building 30 new nuclear reactors over the next couple of decades) and the French (whose nation is 70% + electrified via nuclear energy). Jeff Immelt, GE’s CEO and Barack Hussein Obama’s appointed Jobs Czar, recently said that nuclear is simply too hard to do. That’s an amazing statement for the head of a company which invented the Boiling Water Reactor. Well, if you’re a Democrat enamoured with a love of goddess Gaia and green energy, black death, with the corresponding hatred against self-responsibility and self-accountability, then of course it is too hard to do.

    Prediction: no nukes – more reliance on fossil energy – more price spikes and customer cost expenditures – more depression. Cheap, clean energy with a capacity factor of 90+ % is absolutely vital for a prospering economy, and that is exactly what Barack Hussein Obama opposes.

    BTW, Obama’s new appointment to the US NRC chairmanship (which the Senate confirmed) to replace woman-hater Gregory Jackzo (such an embarrassment to the Administration) is Allison MacFarlane, herself a geologist with ZERO nuclear experience (but she did work against the Yucca Mountain used fuel repository which endeared her to Harry Reid), and her husband is an anthropologist who studies anti-nuclear activism. Both of course are Democrats. Need I say more?

    Vote for Romney!

  • Ah, it is like Groundhog day.

    For a concatenation of reasons, the ratio of federal income tax collections to domestic product fell from 14% a dozen years ago to about 7.5% in recent years. That is the single most salient vector which has as its resultant federal borrowing to the tune of 9% of domestic product. Of course there are other causes.

    I had this exchange with a retired political scientist named Richard Reeb some time ago, which went something like this.

    1. You cannot welsh on federal debt service. Country go blooey.
    2. Benefits to the elderly have to be amended fairly gradually. The old tend to be somewhat impecunious anyway and have a limited capacity to adjust to abrupt changes in circumstances.
    3. With these parameters in mind, you would have to cut all other federal spending by about 2/3 if you want to close the defict absent an increase in income taxes. Federal borrowing accounts for about 40% of the current revenue stream.

    The retired political science professor says ‘cut away’. We still had troops in Iraq at the time (not to mention the chaps at your local VA).

    It is really a poor idea to be innumerate and insoucient about all this.

  • That’s an interesting point Michael. Exactly how and why? Military involvement now is seen as a Cost not a fuel for the economy. and will be budgeted less money. WWII involved our total economy, and of course world trade, defense contractors. I’ve got lots of questions.
    Could some of the factors be that the populace had been formed by the depression, was gaining on it, and had a sense of unity and mutual support by the time the war ended that was much more than isolationism but was the will to be a team and to improve our circumstances.
    I’m afraid any chance for a sense of unity in this country now is terribly fractured and more so every day

  • You could not raise taxes sufficient Art to possibly pay the debt obligations we have now. If Obama had his wish and the Bush tax cuts expired on those earning over 250k a year, the resultant taxes would be 85 billion more in taxes a year. With the current federal budget, 85 billion is a rounding error. Of course all this leaves aside the impact of hiking taxes on the economy. Slashing spending to the bone Art is the only option for digging us out of our fiscal hole.

  • The last time I checked, the ratio of federal expenditure to domestic product was about 0.24. That is higher than it ought to be and excising the dreck in the federal budget could take it down to 0.21. “Higher than it needs to be” is something different than “unprecedented” or “irreperable”. Payroll taxes collections currently amount to 6% of domestic product, corporate profits taxes about 1%, and miscellaneous taxes 0.5%. Again, collecting as much as 14% of domestic product in federal income taxes was accomplished fairly recently.

    We can check the technical literature. I am not sure there is a large difference in the macroeconomic effects of spending cuts or tax increases per se. Some sorts are more efficient than others, of course. Both have contractionary effects over a circumscribed time period. IIRC, our most recent efforts at stimulus suggest a short term multiplier of 0.6 for efforts to goose the economy, as some economist predicted when the stimulus was under consideration. That suggests several years of economic stagnation as fiscal consolidation is being effected.

  • McClarey wrote, “Many mistakenly view Obama as a radical.”

    Suppose that a U.S. President was basically raised as a communist and now sticks it to us like a fascist. Should he be considered a radical?

    Thomas Sowell composed the following article.

    The following website is not a so-called “birther” site, Donald.

  • Suppose that a U.S. President was basically raised as a communist

    By his maternal grandmother (vp of a local bank), his maternal grandfather (furniture salesman turned insurance agent), or his step-father (engineer employed by the state oil company of Indonesia – a subsidiary of the Indonesian military)? He met his father once over a period of several weeks in 1971. One’s mother generally is a weak influence on one’s view of public life and the President has been passably clear he thought his own addle-pated.

  • Art Deco,

    You didn’t check out the links in my post, did you? Not surprising…
    You didn’t read the Sowell article, did you? Exactly…

    Was BHO at all associated with Frank Davis Marshall, Art?
    Would you say that the Weather Underground was/is a marxist, revolutionary group?

    Art, here’s a link to another article that you won’t peruse:

    And two more:

  • The one job Obama had was editing a financial newsletter. Look it up. He referred to it, in a letter to his mother, as working for the enemy.

    In 2009, he and the ministry of troof promised that if Congress gave him $800 billion to stimulate, the unemployment rate would fall to 5.4%. If his heavy-majority Dem Congress didn’t, he said it would be 6%. Obama got the dough: the unemployment rate has been above 8% (even with adjustable statistics) for 41 consecutive months.

    Liberal dolts (I repeat myself again): that means we the people are worse with the stimulation.

    Obama’s policies were intended to harm the evil, unjust private sector. It’s working. Give him four more years and it’s finito.

    Look at what the Obama regime did, not what the ministry of troof said.

  • Dr. Sowell says nothing about his upbringing and the other link is to a speculative work apparently contending that Barack Obama, Sr. falsely claimed paternity of Ann Dunham’s child (even though he was already married to someone else and had been acquainted with Ann Dunham for all of 5 months as of February 1961). It belongs in the same dumpster with Birch Society publications and most Kennedy assassination literature.

    Frank Marshall Davis was in Stanley Dunham’s circle of friends. Strange as it may seem, there are people in this world whose politics do not infuse there every waking moment. The notion that the President was ‘basically raised as a Communist’ because a quondam party member was a friend of his grandfather is preposterous.

  • Art Deco,


    Did BHO not refer to a “fundamental (to the roots) transformation” of the U.S.?

    I wrote, “Suppose that a U.S. President was raised as a communist…” It’s a supposition, a proposition that I think should be considered.

    You did not answer my question about the Weather Underground.

    Did you read the American Thinker articles? Before you tune out completely, I ask you kindly to read the following from a solid Catholic priest.

    Basically, Father Hardon’s contention is that Marxism is alive and well in the U.S. Marxism involvies cutting roots and replanting.

    And another on the modern link between contraception and socialism:

  • Edward R R your links are quite an education for me. thanks

  • anzlyne,

    I owe my education to Christ Jesus and his Church.

    Are you Christian?

    I’m still wondering what McClarey thinks.
    He wrote, “Many mistakenly view Obama as a radical.”

    I hypothesized: “Suppose that a U.S. President was basically raised as a communist and now sticks it to us like a fascist.”

    Again, should he be considered a radical?

    With that question still in the air, I must state that without a radicalized populace, BHO would not have been elected…

  • “I’m still wondering what McClarey thinks.”

    That Obama was raised in a hard left environment, but I doubt if he has strong ideological views of his own. He simply accepts unthinkingly those views that are dominant in his own party. He is a complete reactionary and the farthest thing from a radical. Viewing him as some sort of driven ideologue is to give the man far too much credit and to misunderstand him.

  • OK!

    Mr. McClarey,

    What do you think about this article?

    Also, do you think his views on sexual morality are simply reactionary, sir?

  • Yes, because they are taken as gospel among the liberal circles in which he has spent his entire life. He is not some rabid revolutionary, but rather a dyed in the wool unimaginative reactionary, and that is one of the keys to defeating him. He does not respond well to the unexpected and the new.

  • I looked at the American Thinker pieces, but they’re junk.

    Obama has been in office for three years and change, ample time to see what he brings to the table: nothing. Take all the vectors which operate in the Democratic Party as a matter of course, calculate the resultant, and that’s what you get with this Administration.

    Unlike Jimmy Carter or Ronald Reagan, Obama manifests very little evidence of sustained reflection on either the political order or matters religious. Unlike Harry Truman, Richard Nixon, or George W. Bush, he has not shown much inclination for reading histories. He lacks the history of real accomplishment outside electoral politics that Eisenhower and Bush the Elder had.

    Richard J. Daley was Mayor of Chicago for 21 years; he never wrote his memoirs. James Thompson was Governor of Illinois for 14 years; he has never written his memoirs. Charles Percy had a handsome career in business of 28 years duration followed by 18 years in Congress; he never wrote his memoirs. Barack Obama was a working member of Congress for two years and change. He was on the faculty of the University of Chicago Law School for 12 years. His curriculum vitae is bereft of law review articles. It does, however, have a pair of memoirs. The man doesn’t wanna run nuttin’ but his mouth. His politics are as superficial as everything else about him.

  • “The man doesn’t wanna run nuttin’ but his mouth. His politics are as superficial as everything else about him.”

    I think you may have hit the nail on the head there. Another common assumption about Obama that, I believe, gets overplayed in some conservative circles is that he is a “Chicago Machine” politician determined to impose corrupt Windy City style government everywhere. Well, if he were a true Machine politician, he wouldn’t have bothered running for POTUS. True Machine politicans regard state or federal office as a mere stepping stone to the ultimate prize of becoming alderman or mayor, where they get to be much bigger fish in a smaller pond. Rahm Emmanuel fits the mold of a Machine politician; Obama doesn’t.

  • I am a Christian. I hope there is enough evidence in my life to convict me!
    I think that is what you and Don McC and Art D are talking about– what the evidence tells us about who B. Obama is. By our fruits we are known– not by who we hang out with, the sins or virtues of our parents etc- but the fruits of our own lives. We are seeing fruit evidence already. He may not be personally strong, but surrounded and influenced by many strong ones who seem him as a likely carrier for their ideas…or he may be very strong and wily… I don’t really know.
    But I do not see evidence of increasing peace patience goodness love, joy, forbearance, kindness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
    As you know that list is from Paul’s letter to Galatians . Right before Paul lists those fruits he lists some other works:
    immorality, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, rivalry, jealousy, outbursts of fury, acts of selfishness, dissensions, factions,
    occasions of envy,* drinking bouts, orgies, and the like.

  • I think that President Obama is a machine politician in style. He doesn’t like to or expect to be challenged. Favors are given out on the basis of loyalty. There is no opposition party worth considering. The top man can use any lever of power he wants to.

    It also means that he’s more loyal than Bill Clinton ever was. Clinton betrayed every one of his constituencies (except for the abortion lobby) at one point or another. I look at Obama’s loyalty to Holder and I see a machine politician. Reverent Wright is a different case. Wright didn’t play the role he was supposed to. He talked when the candidate didn’t want him to. That’s a punishable offense.

    Ideologically, I think that in most cases if you scratch a liberal, you find more liberal underneath. Conservatives claim that you’ll find a socialist underneath. And maybe a lot of liberals were influenced by socialism in their youth, but life experiences tend to moderate us from our more ideological youths. I don’t think that Obama has ever moderated his beliefs. Scratch him, and there’s a hardcore socialist underneath. Or, I think D’Souza has argued that there’s an anti-colonialist underneath. Someone who wants to see the First World’s role diminish, wants to see the rich lose and the poor gain.

  • I dunno, Pinky. Andrew Greeley and others have identified clubhouse politics as reliable avenues of political participation for wage-earners and as operating in ways which reflected the priorities of working people (at least in a particular era). Greeley also said: “Mayor Daley didn’t need house intellectuals”, or pretty boys, or polished and articulate people. Mayor Daley himself was known for an extraordinary head for people: “he met you once, he remember you forever”, said one of his precinct captains. For all the crookery of Chicago politics, there was an intense decency about the man manifest in certain spheres (vis-a-vis his wife, for example). Obama keeps his nose clean up to a point. I doubt other people register much with him.

    Obama, like Gary Hart and Michael Dukakis, seems a manifestation of the sensibility and priorities of the professional-managerial bourgeoisie in American politics, to the point where Hillary Clinton was appealing with some success to the more vernacular wing of the Democratic electorate. Except, of course, that Hart’s background was thoroughly working-class, small town, and hard-shell protestant; what was so odd about him is how little of that you could see or hear when he spoke. Still, it was a world he knew. It is hard to imagine someone farther away in spirit from Chicago ward politics than Obama (except Dukakis, who was at least a capable wonk).

  • “It is hard to imagine someone farther away in spirit from Chicago ward politics than Obama”

    Bingo. Classic/traditional ward politics (whether in Chicago, NYC, Boston, or any major city) was and is intensely local and personal. It demanded a lot of tedious social activity, like going to wakes, church suppers, parades, etc., where you could get to know literally every potential voter in your ward. While favors are, as Pinky said, given out on the basis of loyalty, the flip side is that the politician also had to show loyalty to his constituents, and work to earn their vote. If he didn’t, sooner or later the party sachems would notice and he’d find himself displaced by a rival. Policy wonks with grandiose aspirations about making history and changing the world generally don’t have the patience for this stuff.

    “For all the crookery of Chicago politics, there was an intense decency about the man (the senior Mayor Daley) manifest in certain spheres”

    He was, I understand, a daily communicant throughout his life. Mike Royko’s “Boss” points out that during his years as a state legislator he was unusual in that he shied away from “the many pleasures of (session life in) Springfield,” such as getting drunk every night, playing high-stakes poker with lobbyists, and shacking up with secretaries. Instead, he faithfully went to Mass every morning, did his work, called his wife every night, and went for walks with two of his best friends (one of whom later became a bitter political rival). He was equally straight-arrow in his personal life while mayor. With that in mind, I’m amazed there wasn’t any seismic activity reported near Holy Sepulchre Cemetery the day Rahm Emmanuel made his infamous “Chicago values” remark.

  • Mayor Daley I deserves credit for leading a blameless personal life. However, if there was any art of political corruption he failed to master, it wasn’t from lack of effort on his part.

  • Art,

    Did you check out the American Spectator article?

  • Donald,

    Was BHO simply a reactionary when it came to the Born Alive Infant Protection Act?

  • Valerie Jarrett’s one-time-father-in-law knew a friend of Stanley Dunham’s and they had in their social circle another family that had some vaguely-stated association with David Axelrod. Six degrees of separation.

    When Barack Obama was acquainted with Frank Marshall Davis, the latter was running a wholesale paper business. Vernon Jarrett was a prominent opinion journalist in Chicago for a quarter century. He was, per Joseph Epstein, a standard issue black particularist, whatever he may have done with his time ‘ere age 30; he also was notable for having no time for Jesse Jackson.

    The business about David Axelrod is lifted from Discover the Networks. Again, Discover the Networks does not say much definite about the association between Axelrod and David Canter. Axelrod was a newspaper reporter for the Chicago Tribune and then set up shop as a Democratic Party campaign hack for hire. On the basis of his observable behavior, there is no reason to believe he is anything but what he appears to be. He was born in 1955. By the time he would have been involved in any kind of political activity, the Communist Party was a remnant organization of no importance. The Students for a Democratic Society and allied organizations had proved evanescent. Axelrod would have been too young to have had much to do with them. There was a segment of portside opinion journalism that favored the other side during the later years of the Cold War. If he had ever worked for any of these publications (Village Voice, Mother Jones, The Nation, Radical America, &c), it would be on Discover the Networks. It is not.

    All of these people are observable and known quantities. There is no there there.

    As for the antecedent generation, the following is notable. The Communist Party had 100,000 members in 1947. It had about 16,000 in 1972. Even if it acquired not a single new recruit in those 25 years, there you have 84,000 quondam members. During the interval between 1947 and the midpoint of Barack Obama’s residence with his grandparents, it is a reasonable guess about 40% of people living in 1947 had died. That leaves you with roughly 50,000 one-time members ca 1975, or roughly 150 in metropolitan Honolulu and 10x that number in and around Chicago. They had jobs and friends like everyone else.

  • Good point Edward R R .. he is not just a do nothing. He HAS taken action and is responsible for the deaths of (how many???!!!) I think we can recognize his stripes.
    I am not sure why some are reluctant to call him radical. We have to take him really seriously for what he claims to be and for what he shows himself to be. It is a mistake to underestimate his commitment to what he espouses.

  • “Was BHO simply a reactionary when it came to the Born Alive Infant Protection Act?”

    Sadly yes. By the time he started his political career the Democrat party was the pro-abort party and Obama simply follows unthinkingly the path of his party. Obama did not invent any of this. He is not an innovator or a radical.

  • “Valerie Jarrett’s one-time-father-in-law knew a friend of Stanley Dunham’s and they had in their social circle another family that had some vaguely-stated association with David Axelrod. Six degrees of separation.”

    If you’re really into connecting the dots that much, then I must be one of the most dangerous radicals on earth. I work for an agency of the Illinois General Assembly, of which Obama was once a member. That means I have only 2 or 3 degrees of separation from EVERYONE Obama knows, from David Axelrod to Bill Ayers to Tony Rezko. Better not tell The American Spectator!

  • Donald,

    The Born Alive Infant Protection Act was passed unanimously in the U.S. Senate in 2002. Being against that Act was apparently not as you say “the path of his party” at the time.

    NARAL expressed neutrality on the bill, sir.


    Please understand that the American Spectator is on your side, if you are against the current administration.


    The American Thinker is not a rag as you apparently believe. Again, if you are against the current administration, I suggest reading further on that website.

  • I have read it. The quality is mixed and, re the President, some of their writers are obsessed with the inconsequential (e.g. how long a time BO Sr. cohabited with Ann Dunham and the characteristics of their social life, to the point of calling Gov. Abercrombie a liar because he has offered memories inconsistent with a thesis of Jack Cashill, &c.).

  • I am familiar with the American Spectator, which I look at in hard copy. It is not a bad publication, but it is not comprehensively reliable in its editorial judgment.

  • Elaine Krewer and Donald R. McClarey

    Mayor Daley may well have been a man of great personal piety, but that is not always incompatible with a pragmatic approach to politics. Père Joseph du Tremblay was not only an austere religious, but wrote one of the treasures of French spirituality, his «
    Introduction à la vie spirituelle par une facile méthode d’oraison, » is still in print; it is a remarkable adaptation of St Ignatius Loyaola’s Spiritual Exercises to the Franciscan tradition – Père Joseph was a Capuchin Friar. He was also Cardinal Richelieu’s most trusted confidante and diplomatic agent, hence his nickname of l’Eminence grise [Grey Eminence] Richelieu, too, was personally devout and a reforming bishop; he introduced the Tridentine reforms for priestly formation into his diocese of Luçon, the first French bishop to do so.

    Alas, both men were sometimes betrayed into using methods to achieve their political goals that were less than edifying.

  • So far as I can see Mr Obama has made no original contribution to the political thinking of the Left. Moreover, he appears uninfluenced by more recent developments, especially on the International Left – One thinks of people like Slavoj Zizek, Alain Badiou, Eric Hazan or the comité invisible.

    This may well be, because what Europeans consider the Radical Left, Americans would regard as the lunatic fringe.

  • “The Born Alive Infant Protection Act was passed unanimously in the U.S. Senate in 2002. Being against that Act was apparently not as you say “the path of his party” at the time.”

    Yeah, of course Naral was neutral on that piece of legislation because it contained this provision:

    `(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed to affirm, deny, expand, or contract any legal status or legal right applicable to any member of the species homo sapiens at any point prior to being `born alive’ as defined in this section.’.

    Pro-aborts tend to be neutral when a piece of legislation cannot impact their sacred right of abortion.

  • “Keynes” is subverted by today’s credentialed, academic economists, liberals, and so-called journalists.

    The man was a clear thinker and highly correct in his advocacy of short-term, government deficits to raise falling aggregate demand . . .

    In about 50 words Keynes, would tell us why $5 trillions in deficit spending; Obamacare; Dodd-Frank; stealing from mortgagees and GM bondholders; vetoing energy independence; etc. have not resolved Great Depression II.

    He curtly had “pegged” Marx, Obama and his ilk.

    “Marxian Socialism must always remain a portent to the historians of Opinion — how a doctrine so illogical and so dull can have exercised so powerful and enduring an influence over the minds of men, and, through them, the events of history.” – John Maynard Keynes

    “. . . an obsolete textbook which I know not only to be scientifically erroneous but without interest or application to the modern world . . .” – John Maynard Keynes on Karl Marx’s “Das Kapital”

    “I can be influenced by what seems to me to be justice and good sense; but the class war will find me on the side of the educated bourgeoisie.” – John Maynard Keynes

    Now, I am a “Keynesian.”

  • Here’s a sample of articles from American Thinker that more or less correspond to the perspective of The American Catholic:

    Articles: Obama the Lawbreaker versus the Catholic Church
    Feb 22, 2012 … Catholic bishops and the Church’s other clerical and even lay leaders have let this issue devolve into a debate about the right to use ……/obama_the_lawbreaker_versus_the_catholic_ church.html

    Articles: Obama’s Catholic Church Gambit: Lessons from American …
    Feb 16, 2012 … Morris speculates that the Obama HHS mandate on contraception, sterilization, and abortifacients is a fight with the Catholic Church that Team ……/obamas_catholic_church_gambit_lessons_from _american_communists.html

    Articles: Why is the Catholic Church Surprised?
    Feb 19, 2012 … Why is the Catholic Church Surprised? By Trevor Thomas. In the months prior to the 2008 U.S. Presidential election, then candidate Barack ……/why_is_the_catholic_church_surprised.html

    Blog: War on the Catholic Church
    May 13, 2012 … War on the Catholic Church. Keith Riler. We know contraception’s cheap and plentiful availability makes President Obama’s HHS policy a ……/war_on_the_catholic_church.html

    Articles: The ObamaCare Mandate: Are Catholic Martyrs Not Far Off?
    May 27, 2012 … Those unfamiliar with Catholic theology don’t understand why Church officials can’t be more flexible when it comes to ObamaCare and the ……/the_obamacare_mandate_are_catholic_martyrs _not_far_off.html

    Articles: Obama’s War against Catholics
    Feb 8, 2012 … The Catholic Church, with its dogma, magisterial authority, and two-thousand- year-old tradition, is the most visible and significant source of ……/obamas_war_against_catholics.html

    Archived-Articles: The Catholic Church and the Left
    Feb 20, 2011 … Whatever one may think of its theology and ecclesiology, the cold heart fact of the matter is that the Catholic Church is not just one more ……/the_catholic_church_and_the_le.html

    Articles: ‘Pro-Choice’ Obama Forces Religious Institutions to Pay for …
    Jan 25, 2012 … Reaction from the Catholic Church, its bishops, several Catholic universities, and many other Catholic leaders has been swift and categorical.…/pro-choice_obama_forces_religious_ institutions_to_pay_for_abortion_drugs.html

    Articles: Whom the Gods Would Destroy
    Feb 12, 2012 … I’m referring, of course, to the Catholic Church. Now, I don’t mean that the Archangel Gabriel will appear out of the East to scourge the ……/whom_the_gods_would_destroy.html

    Archived-Articles: Catholic Church and Health Care Reform
    Aug 16, 2009 … The Catholic Church’s opposition to euthanasia (an act just as evil as abortion) is clearly stated in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, #2277: ……/catholic_church_and_health_car.html

President Obama Shows Us How

Thursday, August 2, AD 2012

A few observations:

1.  This bozo wouldn’t recognize the dignity to which his office is entitled unless said dignity offered to make a sizable campaign contribution.

2.  Just how dumb do they think the average Obama contributor is if they think it is necessary to demonstrate how to make a campaign contribution?

3.  They must be lacking in the mass contributions category this go round.

4.  What might have been considered cute in 2008 by his followers might rub some of them the wrong way in 2012, especially those who have been out of work for a while, and living in mom’s basement.

5.  This society is rapidly becoming a badly written Saturday Night Live routine.

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14 Responses to President Obama Shows Us How

  • #5 is depressingly true.

  • Underneath Obama’s face is the leprosy of death.

  • “Leprosy of death”? Too colorful. Obama is simply a somewhat bright guy who, through luck more than anything else, rode a wave of dissatisfaction with the Bush administration to the White House. He is a fairly unimaginative pol who believes in the enconomic nostrums of his Party, which, unfortunately for the nation, are complete cock and bull. Obama is no arch-fiend or a grand villain, but rather an incompetent liberal dime-a-dozen politician from Chicago who, in more sane times, would never have arisen beyond the State Senate of Illinois.

  • #5. Reality imitating art. No wonder Hollywood loves him so much. They wrote the script.

  • In my view Mary De Voe and Don McC are both right in their characterizations-
    A bright guy, a true believer in the left way without being aware of the death that lurks there– in an eating away fashion that could be likemed to leprosy

  • Thanks Anzlyne, I could not say all the nice things, the excuses, for Obama, Donald has. Obama’s total unappreciation for the human being, Obama’s contempt for America, our flag, and our Constitution, Obama’s lack of spine to stand up to Planned Parenthood and for what is right and free, Obama is to me another picture of Dorian Grey. I am waiting for the people to see Obama for who he really is or maybe for who he really isn’t. Everything after this will an ad hominem.

    Donald McC. I have reread your analysis of Obama’s situation and you are most probaby correct, however your use of the term “arch fiend” seems to address Obama’s contempt for his constituents. Obama is comfortable with taking us to totalitarianism.

  • “Obama is no arch-fiend or a grand villain, but rather an incompetent liberal dime-a-dozen politician from Chicago who, in more sane times, would never have arisen beyond the State Senate of Illinois.” That is what they said about Napoleon. Remember Napoleon forced the Church to crown him emperor.

  • Please Mary. I am quite familiar with Napoleon. I have read dozens of books on his campaigns. Obama is no Napoleon.

  • How about Santa Anna? (He called himself Napoleon of the West)

  • He is a rip off artist and so is the Democratic Party for the most part, connections with Acorn, Chicago and it notorious corrupt political sphere, etc all spell that out. The draining of our country’s coffers and our pockets is never ending. I really don’t think they will be happy until they do have it all in some way (including ownership of our homes, businesses, etc). They are so good at making it look so innocent!

  • He’s like the “three-card montie” scam artists that used to steal working stiffs’ money on street corners before NYC was saved by Mayor Giulliani and Commissioner Bratton.

    I fear many voters are sufficiently desperate and despicable to re-elect the con artist in chief.

    Abandon all hope . . .

  • T. Shaw,

    The lines at Chick-Fil-A on Wednesday say that your pessimism and mine are unfounded.

Walesa Endorses Romney

Tuesday, July 31, AD 2012


Faithful readers of The American Catholic will recall the incident, recounted here, when President Obama chose to snub Lech Walesa, the near legendary former President of Poland, who, as the leader of Solidarity, along with Pope John Paul II and President Ronald Reagan, sounded the death knell of European Communism, as being “too political”.  Yesterday Walesa got “too political” again:

Two months ago, President Obama’s team refused to host former Polish President and Nobel Peace Prize Lech Walesa  at the White House, claiming that he was too “political” to participate in the Presidential Medal of Freedom ceremony.

Today, Walesa — an anti-Communist freedom fighter — got political.  “Gov. Romney, get your success, be successful!” Walesa said in Poland during a meeting with the former governor. “Poland and many other countries will certainly do their best for the United States to restore its leadership position. And after our conversation, I’m quite confident that you will be successful in doing that,” The Washington Post quoted him as saying.

The endorsement comes two months after Obama refused to host Walesa at the White House. The Polish government had requested that Walesa receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom that was posthumously awarded to Jan Karski, who served in the Polish Underground during World War II.

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5 Responses to Walesa Endorses Romney

  • That is about as a good an endorsement as you can get

  • Pulaski and Kiosciusko and now Walesa are still fighting for our freedom

  • I had forgotten that the Obama White House had rejected a request from the Polish Government that the retired President of Poland receive an award on behalf of the deceased. One grasps for an explanation (other than the President or Valerie Jarret or someone disapproves of Lech Walesa’s career – must have been some disagreeable article in The Nation about him).

  • If I remember correctly, a couple of years ago, Walesa appeared in Chicago at a campaign/fundraising event for Adam Andrejewski, a GOP candidate for governor, who was one of half a dozen GOP primary candidates at the time. I believe Walesa said at the time that he saw a lot of himself in Adam A. (not sure I want to try spelling his last name from memory again), as someone trying to stand up against a corrupt system. Adam A. didn’t win, but I don’t think we’ve seen the last of him on the political scene.

  • A union man supporting Romney. Amazing!

President Obama: No One Actually Achieves Anything On Their Own

Monday, July 16, AD 2012

That’s a paraphrase, but I don’t think I’m too far off from what the president actually said.

There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me — because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t — look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something — there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there. (Applause.)

If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didn’t get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet.

The point is, is that when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together. There are some things, just like fighting fires, we don’t do on our own. I mean, imagine if everybody had their own fire service. That would be a hard way to organize fighting fires.

Here is some video from the speech:

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40 Responses to President Obama: No One Actually Achieves Anything On Their Own

  • Jim Treacher writes, “Obama tells us we don’t deserve what we have earned.”

    And, “Here’s The Smartest President Ever, speaking in Roanoke on Friday and writing Romney’s next ad for him. Sure sounds like he’s channelling Elizabeth Warren. . . . Barack Obama openly stokes bitter resentment against Americans who work hard, take risks, and create jobs. But at least he’s ‘likable’!”

    From comments: Americans to Obama: “Funny, we were thinking the exact same thing about you…”

  • is that the very same people they are castigating are the ones who paid for those roads, bridges and police through their taxes.

    That was the first thing that went through my mind….

  • I would be very skeptical of the datum that the most affluent 1% are responsible for 40% of the tax collections.

    The difficulty you get with this is that the speakers are not vigorous about delineating the circumstances, degree, and process by which the fruits of an individuals entrepreneurship and labor are socialized and re-allocated to third parties. He and Eliz. Warren are going to have to do better than that if they want to construct a believable apologia for the Steven Chu’s green energy loan portfolio.

  • Business owners do business to supply a demand, make a profit to pay hard working people and to pay myriad taxes.

    Firefighters, police, public educators, and public road builders are also working people paid by government with everyone’s tax dollars.

    ” There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me — because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t — look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. ” School, highways, byways, police and firefighters.

    So, like those who want to give something back, just give campaign contributions and party. Who knows how to control government spending or cares – except maybe folks like Paul Ryan – the campaign counts and tracks donations of those who want to give something back though – not to worry. There’s going to be a lot of insurance business coming along which is why, just maybe, the idea of firefighting comes into a comparison with business owners. I don’t know – just a publically educated citizen of the den. What I do know is that I had two employers close the doors for good due to a bad economy, skyrocketing taxes and overhead. Hundred year old businesses.
    Now, the police get broken window reports.

    Why doesn’t he like wage earners and retirees from private business with no unions who may not afford campaign contributions or enjoy being denigrated for having more faith in God than him?

  • Art, it is correct when applied to income taxes, though the percentage falls when all federal taxes are accounted for (payroll, excise). I’ve seen conflicting numbers on the share of all federal revenues – it’s somewhere between 22 and 28 percent.

  • The Universal Declaration on Human Rights of The United Nations says that the human being gets his inalienable rights from the state when he is born. The American citizen is endowed by his Creator, when he is created, as is stated in our Declaration of Independence. It is simply an extension of this thought of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights that Obama is making to the effect that all things come from the state and therefore belong to the state. Even that state in America is constituted by the people. The presidency is constituted by the people as his constituents. Obama can practice his atheism in the privacy of his own home, but not as president of the USA.

  • He’s right. Certain people don’t deserve what they earn.

    He names the wrong people.

    A huge blood sucking tick is feasting on the commonweal. Everything it gets is confiscated from the private sector.

    Let’s go to the facts. The public sector is growing faster than the private economy, and it will bleed us until, unexpectedly, there is nothing left.

  • Ever since that healthcare non-debate where Obama pretended to listen to John McCain and then rudely shut him down with, “John, I won!,” I’ve had an open ear listening to Obama’s condescending speeches fill the rich and lustrous version of reality of which he is to be the hero.

    The man is not well. (Note: I used the word “man” liberally, and the words “not well” conservatively).

  • I think the president has a point. Certainly the folks at MFGlobal wouldn’t have
    been able to take and ‘lose’ over $1.5 billion from their client’s accounts, and face
    no legal action for their theft, all on their own. I’m sure the people at Solyndra,
    Ener1, 1366 Technologies and Solar City wouldn’t have been able to pocket those
    billions in taxpayer dollars prior to declaring bankruptcy, all on their own. Being
    bundlers for the president’s re-election campaign, having ties to the administration,
    showing up for fundraisers with a fat envelope– those things are much more
    important to this president than seeing individuals trying to succeed all on their
    own. If people succeed all on their own, they won’t need to grease the palms of
    some party hack.

    I think that a political machine that controls the economy, where no one may get
    ahead on their own without the purchased goodwill and protection of party insiders–
    where you gotta pay to play– that actually is Obama’s vision for America. It is the
    corruption of Chicago writ large.

  • The socialist government-directed redistribution of wealth is folly.

    The Catholic Church proposes, in contrast, an individually-directed redistribution of wealth. The rich, by their own accord, ought to sell their belongings and give to the poor.

    It is Christ’s command: it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven.

    It is the Church’s teaching: “St. John Chrysostom vigorously recalls this: “Not to enable the poor to share in our goods is to steal from them and deprive them of life. The goods we possess are not ours, but theirs.” (CCC 2446)”

  • So to follow that logic, let’s start applauding the person who brings on the beverages to the plane, the person who puts the fuel in and the people who paved the runway. Who cares about the pilot? Anyone can fly the darn plane as well just by looking at the flight manual 10 minutes before takeoff. And what star athlete could make their own uniforms? Or construct the arena or stadium. Why pay to watch them when we can watch the person collecting the tickets do their far more important job. Also let’s pass a law forbidding anyone from saying “ME, I or MYSELF. I know that will be a hardship for some Presidents but that’s logic for you.

  • On a different note, isn’t it quite apparent that leftists use the exact same reasoning to excuse criminal behavior that they use to condemn excellence that wasn’t sponsored by the government? The criminal does crime according to the Left because of all the other people in their lives who contributed to their maladjustment. So society is to blame for the criminal. But they are also the sole basis for anyone doing something outstanding. Unless of course a bureaucrat claims credit in which case society had nothing to do with it, only Government. Because Government is not part of society, just above it.

  • Do not fear that which can only kill the body.

    Fear that which can kill the Soul.

  • Nate Wildermuth wrote “The Catholic Church proposes, in contrast, an individually-directed redistribution of wealth…”

    Paul VI teaches in Populorum Progressio “24. If certain landed estates impede the general prosperity because they are extensive, unused or poorly used, or because they bring hardship to peoples or are detrimental to the interests of the country, the common good sometimes demands their expropriation.
    Vatican II affirms this emphatically…”

    And, again, in Section 33, “ Organized programs are necessary for “directing, stimulating, coordinating, supplying and integrating” (35John XXIII, Encyc.letter Mater et Magistra: AAS 53 (1961), 414.) the work of individuals and intermediary organizations.

    It is for the public authorities to establish and lay down the desired goals, the plans to be followed, and the methods to be used in fulfilling them; and it is also their task to stimulate the efforts of those involved in this common activity…”

  • I will be happy when the Catholic Church returns to its mission: the salvation of souls.

    PS: It’s not as if the collectivist, central planners haven’t been redistributing and controlling the economy since 1913, when they amended the US Constitution to make the progressive income tax “constitutional” and they instituted the Federal Reserve to centrally control the money supply and interest rates.

    And, they have given $$$ trillions since the 1960’s War on Poverty, and we have more poor people today. In fact, the Lightbringer in the WH has accelerated poverty formation rate in the US.

    The Devil is in the details.

  • I’ve suspected for a long time that the core of Ayn Rand’s Objectivist “every person for themselves” philosophy was an overreaction to the collectivism displayed by the Nazis and Communists. Because they abused terms like “sacrifice” and “common good” to justify the government controlling everything, she went off the deep end in the other direction and insisted that sacrifice was always bad and there was no such thing as a “common good.”

    So I suspect that the main reason hardcore “all government is evil, all taxation is theft, and everyone makes it totally on their own or not at all” libertarians exist at all (though they can hardly be said to dominate the GOP) is BECAUSE of smug liberals like Obama who think nothing can be done right and no one can survive without government being involved.

  • In the interests of precision.

    1. The 16th Amendment was a perfectly legitimate legal act, as is the income tax it authorizes.

    2. The Federal Reserve controls only the discount rate it charges its member banks and the dimensions of the monetary base. It influences other metrics. As for re-instituting a specie-based currency, you do not want to go there.

    3. There are quite a mass of witless cross-subsidies incorporated into the tax code and federal expenditure, all bits of patronage for the clientele of particular members of Congress. There is no central planning. The only sort of planning you see concerns public works and land use, and the latter is the province of local governments.

  • Elaine, the President is enough of an irritant from what he actually does do and fails to do. No need to lay on him the responsibility for the intellectual maldevelopment of the world’s libertarian cranks.

  • When my restaurant had been open about 6 months, and another 4 months before 9/11 knocked a bunch of us out, I was approached one afternoon between service times by a well-meaning person who wanted me to donate to a worthy community cause. She did not know that a 1-3% profit margin is superlative in small-box stores like mine, and I politely declined with the caveat that once I was more fully established I would be happy to be a regular sponsor of those charitable activities I saw beneficial, were I able.

    “But,” she stammered, “don’t you want to give something back?”

    “I already do, miss,” was my reply. “I give 15 people jobs. I give hundreds of people great food at a reasonable price. I give the electric, gas & water people another place to sell thier products and services. I give way too much to the developer in rent every month. I ‘give back’ 97-100% of the money that comes through my door every month depending on how well I control my food cost, wastage and labor.”

    I will gladly admit that, after a quick primer on free-market economics and entrepreneurial risk, she understood quite well and asked if she should concentrate her efforts on more established enterprises. I said that was a good idea and she genuinely thanked me and went on her way. Smart girl.

    The point, though, is that while none of us who ever ventured out into the insane world of entrepreneurism got there solo, it works both ways. The independent businessman, the risk-taker, the investor and venture capitalist do not work solely for themselves even if their motives happen to be self-centered. Each of their efforts enables profit and growth by others who would not be able to ‘share the wealth’ if those opportunities did not exist. I’m sure that any of us who was weird enough to not sleep through Econ 101, when it was taught and not indoctrinated, remembers the old exercise of “How many people does it take to get a banana to your kitchen?”

    There’s no “funnel of benevolence” leading to the wallet of the successful business person. Instead, it’s more like a sprinkler head of growth and wealth, both watering the ground upon which it stands but also providing for the surroundings that in turn do their part and so forth.

    So, enough of this “giving back” shenanigans. After I have paid my debts and bills, and rendered unto God what is His, what’s left is mine. All 1% of it.

  • While I may not disagree too much with the O’s general concept, I am still left with the question “and then what?” Of course no one does everything on their own, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t do anything on their own. The O did not pay back my student loans; the O did not get up to go to classes for me, do my homeowrk, take my exams; the O did not go through hundreds of job interviews for me; the O did not get up each morning to get in to work and perform my duties.

    The entire issue is not should each pay his fair share for the well being of the community, but what precisely is that fair share? There is a lot of room for debate on that.

  • Mary, I have to disagree with you on the UD of HR – it does not specify from whom rights are obtained,

    Article 1.

    •All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.

    so it is a bit inaccurate to say it claims the states give the rights – to paraphrase a modern day prophetess, the UD claims they are born that way. The states recognize the rights (or should), but it does not claim the states creates the rights.

  • In the Kingdom of Obama is like this. The subjects find more disability pensions than can find jobs. Last month in the Kingdom of Obama, 85,000 subjects became disability pensioners and 81,000 serfs found work. In the Kingdom of Obama, jobs are like hens’ teeth.

  • Anyone who takes even a cursory examination of Mr. Obama’s background should, in NO way, be surprised at his remarks.

  • “It is for the public authorities to establish and lay down the desired goals, the plans to be followed, and the methods to be used in fulfilling them; and it is also their task to stimulate the efforts of those involved in this common activity…” The virtue of charity must always remain voluntary or it becomes extortion to the demands of others.

  • Tc matt says: “Mary, I have to disagree with you on the UD of HR – it does not specify from whom rights are obtained,

    Article 1.

    •All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.

    so it is a bit inaccurate to say it claims the states give the rights – to paraphrase a modern day prophetess, the UD claims they are born that way. The states recognize the rights (or should), but it does not claim the states creates the rights.”

    Saint Thomas Aquinas said that human existence was the criterion for the objective ordering of human rights. Aquinas also said that the human being was an individual substance of a rational nature. Homo-Sapiens.
    Citizenship is the only good a nation can bestow or endow on an individual person.
    What the UD of HR is saying is that unless an individual can produce a vital statistic of citizenship or a certificate of citizenship, the human being in existence in the womb has no acknowledgeable or recognizable civil or human rights for which the United Nations will vouch for, or be responsible for or have cause to defend. The UD of HR is derelict in omitting the truth of the creation of the United Nations by the nations, created by man, created by God. Without an acknowledgement of God, a person does not exist unless he has citizenship papers. With God, a person exists without citizenship papers.
    Yes, you are right T c Matt. The UD of HR does not claim creation of or endowment of human rights. The UD of HR claims jurisdiction over human rights and thusly jurisdiction over God.

  • Michael Paterson-Seymour: :Paul VI teaches in Populorum Progressio “24. If certain landed estates impede the general prosperity because they are extensive, unused or poorly used, or because they bring hardship to peoples or are detrimental to the interests of the country, the common good sometimes demands their expropriation.
    Vatican II affirms this emphatically…”

    And, again, in Section 33, “ Organized programs are necessary for “directing, stimulating, coordinating, supplying and integrating” (35John XXIII, Encyc.letter Mater et Magistra: AAS 53 (1961), 414.) the work of individuals and intermediary organizations.”

    The first paragraph describes Eminent Domain dealt with in the Fifth Amendment, called the takings clause. It requires recompense for the value of the land by the government. To expropriate land that would not be used for the common good or go uncompensated for is still stealing.

    The second paragraph needs to be understood, that yes, organizations must be formed to produce much good results. A person may not be forced to enter into such an organization, or forced to support such an organization without free consent. Force is what communism uses. Free will is what the Church uses in respect to the dignity of the human being.

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  • Mary de Voe wrote, “The virtue of charity must always remain voluntary or it becomes extortion to the demands of others.”

    But in Populorum Progressio, the pope is not talking about the virtue of charity, but about the virtue of justice; this is the teaching of the apostles; this is the teaching of the holy fathers:-

    “23. “He who has the goods of this world and sees his brother in need and closes his heart to him, how does the love of God abide in him?” (1 Jn 3. 17) Everyone knows that the Fathers of the Church laid down the duty of the rich toward the poor in no uncertain terms. As St. Ambrose put it: “You are not making a gift of what is yours to the poor man, but you are giving him back what is his. You have been appropriating things that are meant to be for the common use of everyone. The earth belongs to everyone, not to the rich.” ( De Nabute, c. 12, n. 53: PL 14. 747; cf. J. R. Palanque, Saint Ambroise et l’empire romain,Paris: de Boccard (1933), 336 ff.) These words indicate that the right to private property is not absolute and unconditional.

    No one may appropriate surplus goods solely for his own private use when others lack the bare necessities of life. In short, “as the Fathers of the Church and other eminent theologians tell us, the right of private property may never be exercised to the detriment of the common good.” When “private gain and basic community needs conflict with one another,” it is for the public authorities “to seek a solution to these questions, with the active involvement of individual citizens and social groups.” (Letter to the 52nd Social Week at Brest, in L’homme et la révolution urbaine, Lyon: Chronique sociale (1965), 8-9.)”

  • “the right to private property is not absolute and unconditional.” The right to property is absolute and unconditional when that property is justfully gained, shared and gratefully acknowledged by the possesor as belonging to God.
    The matter here is the soul of the person who is in possession of the property, to whom the papal letters are rightfully addressed. All papal letters, called encyclicals, because they encircle the world are addressed to each and every person.
    The apostles, therefore, the Church Fathers did not wrest or take by force what possessions of the people ought to have been given to the poor. In condemning greed, and authorizing the VIRTUE of Charity, they spoke JUSTICE. If anyone refuses JUSTICE, he refuses God. We cannot take from the atheist because he is an atheist any more than we can take from the greedy man. Stealing from the wealthy to give to the poor is still stealing. The possessions of the wealthy that belong to the poor in Justice must be willingly surrendered to the poor for the salvation of the wealthy man’s soul. God did not authorize the taking from the rich man to give to Lazarus.

  • Pope Paul VI explains his remark in this way, “No one may appropriate surplus goods solely for his own private use when others lack the bare necessities of life. In short, “as the Fathers of the Church and other eminent theologians tell us, the right of private property may never be exercised to the detriment of the common good.” When “private gain and basic community needs conflict with one another,” it is for the public authorities “to seek a solution to these questions, with the active involvement of individual citizens and social groups.”

    St Thomas, too, says: “Community of goods is ascribed to the natural law, not that the natural law dictates that all things should be possessed in common and that nothing should be possessed as one’s own: but because the division of possessions is not according to the natural law, but rather arose from human agreement which belongs to positive law, as stated above (57, 2,3). Hence the ownership of possessions is not contrary to the natural law, but an addition thereto devised by human reason.” [IIa IIae Q66, II,obj 1]

    Now, it is within the power of the legislator to repeal or amend the positive law.

  • Now, it is within the power of the legislator to repeal or amend the positive law.
    Put it on the ballot for the will of the people to be heard, as the common good now embraces contraception, abortaficients and trangenderism as well as genetically engineered human beings and clones.

  • As Roman Catholics, some of you people should be ashamed of yourselves for bearing false witness against President Obama. Don’t use my faith and religion for your evil political purposes.

  • Truly hilarious Joe. Care to point out any false statements made against Obama in this post, or were you merely troll venting?

  • ” … Don’t use my faith and religion for your evil political purposes. ” – Joe Walsh

    In a nutshell.

  • The first bill that obama passed was to reinstitute U.S. funds (100 Million U.S. Tax dollars)
    to abortion world wide that President George Bush vetoed any U.S. tax money to fund Planned Parenthood world wide. Back then I couldn’t figure out who would of voted for this turkey? Now as time goes on…it will only get worse. I pray there isn’t another term for obama and the bitch.

  • I’m with you, Henry.

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  • Michael Paterson-Seymour: “Pope Paul VI explains his remark in this way, “No one may appropriate surplus goods solely for his own private use when others lack the bare necessities of life.” The key word is SURPLUS. Taking away the necessities of life from anyone and drilling them into poverty is not Catholic Doctrine, nor is it charity. It is not even sane. Excuse me: Give them your own and I will give them mine.

    As for former president Clinton and now, Obama, both wrote Executive Orders appropriating all public lands and waterways. Obama wrote an Executive Order authorizing the appropriation of all private lands. The Homestead Act used to give the homeless a place to build for themselves on public land. Now, the public is not allowed on public land. See “INDWELLERS” in public parks. Government in and of itself cannot own anything. Everything belongs in joint and common tenancy to each and every person to be held in trust for all constitutional posterity.

  • Joe Walsh says:
    Friday, July 20, 2012 A.D. at 7:13am
    “As Roman Catholics, some of you people should be ashamed of yourselves for bearing false witness against President Obama. Don’t use my faith and religion for your evil political purposes.”
    The Infant Butcher from the South Side of Chicago has defenders.

  • Mary de Voe wrote, “Government in and of itself cannot own anything. Everything belongs in joint and common tenancy to each and every person to be held in trust for all constitutional posterity.”

    Governments cannot own anything, certainly, but is it really true that nations cannot? Suppose I buy bonds issued by the government of Nusquamia, who really owes me the money? Is it each citizen, at the time the bonds were issued; does each of them owe me the whole amount, subject to a right of contribution from his or her fellows, or does each owe me an aliquot share? No one thinks that way. Does the government of Nusquamia owe me the money? They have a duty to see me paid, which is not at all the same thing. It is impossible to convert the proposition that Nusquamia owes me money to a series of propositions that certain human beings, now in existence, owe me the money.

    Some jurists, notably the German Pandektists, argued that “moral persons,” bodies like churches, municipalities, universities, trades unions, businesses and other associations are “persons,” not by legal fiction, but by being ultimate and unanalysable bearers-of-rights-and-duties and that, in that sense, legal personality is no fiction, but a social reality. Indeed, they often spoke of the state as “the corporation of corporations. The French school take the opposite view, except, somewhat illogically, for the Nation.

    NB I know that Innocent IV held the “fictitious person” view of corporations, but he was speaking as a canonist, not a political philosopher, and it is certainly not magisterial teaching.