Sunday, November 29, 2009

Hatin' Palin

As Sarah Palin hits the road to promote her book, there has been a lot of discussion in the press about why she draws such strong negative reactions from some. In RedStateVT’s view the answers are not that difficult and can be summed up as follows:

1) Sarah Palin is a woman and liberals expect any minority (defined as anyone not a white male) to be liberals. When a member of a minority is not liberal, liberals get really annoyed and try to discredit them. The list of apostates is long and includes everyone from Ann Coulter to Carrie Prejean to Condi Rice. (The latter committed the multiple infractions of being a conservative African-American woman who worked for George Bush.)
2) Liberals are particularly snobby about the way that people talk, viewing this as a sign of someone’s innate intelligence. They despised George Bush’s folksy speech and periodic malapropisms. Similarly, they don’t like the way Sarah Palin talks. Hence, both she and Bush are viewed as dumb. By contrast, liberals are agog with the lofty oration of Al Gore and Barack Obama. It doesn’t really matter what they say or whether they are right or not, it’s just that it sounds so much better!
3) And lastly, as is often the case, you hate what you fear the most. If liberals truly thought Palin was an inarticulate, inconsequential lightweight why would they spend so much time obsessing about her?

Friday, November 27, 2009

Never Mind the Facts

Flash Back
Two key domestic policy objectives of the Bush Administration came under attack today as the data meant to provide the supporting rationale was found to be flawed and, in some instances, fraudulent. The revelations have unleashed a firestorm of media coverage and Administration officials are being pressed to explain whether the President will withdraw his support for these programs. (RedStateVT News, 11/27/2008)

Flash Forward
Two key domestic policy objectives of the Obama Administration came under attack today as the data meant to provide the supporting rationale was found to be flawed and, in some instances, fraudulent. Administration officials issued no statement and the media largely ignored the revelations. (RedStateVT News, 11/27/2009)

Of course, the two issues are global warming and health care. The above items are illustrative, but we believe they pretty much ring true. We now know that climate change advocates have been faking the data. We also know that those reports that infant mortality in the U.S. is worse than – fill in the blank with any third world country – are likewise false. Turns out that in the U.S. we go to extraordinary lengths to keep newborn babies alive, while other countries simply don’t count babies who die soon after birth. (Ann Coulter ran seven columns from August through October that get to these issues and are required reading on health care.)

But, of course, liberal reaction to facts that contradict their world view is simply to ignore them. Hence “fixing” global warming and the U.S. health care remain top priorities for Obama.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


One would think that the revelation that scientist-advocates have been faking data would give pause to the global warming movement. Apparently not as President Obama heads to a UN conference in Copenhagen on December 9th:

Mr. Obama will tell the delegates to the climate conference that the United States intends to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions “in the range of” 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020 and 83 percent by 2050, officials said. The administration has resisted until now delivering a firm pledge on emissions reductions because Congress has not yet acted on global warming legislation and because several large developing nations, including China and India, have not detailed their own plans. (NYT, 11/25/2009)

It is disturbing enough that Obama's advisors would not counsel him to sit this one out. But he then takes it a step further and unilaterally surrenders by showing his cards to China and India. RedStateVT has said it before, but Obama may just be the worst negotiator-in-chief this country has ever seen.

Exactly Wrong
Nancy Pelosi, the House speaker, said during a conference call of economists and bloggers that there was "serious unrest in our caucus about can we afford this war.” Ms. Pelosi said she did not want to sacrifice the party’s domestic agenda to the cost of the troop buildup. “The American people believe that if something is in our national security interest, we have to be able to afford it,” she said. “That doesn’t mean that we hold everything else” hostage to that. (NYT, 11/24/2009)

One of the earliest lessons that RedStateVT learned as a young conservative is that national security comes first. A country must be able and willing to defend itself from its enemies. If there is no country, then all other domestic priorities are meaningless. Pelosi apparently would rather have a health care bill than defend the country from terrorists.

Exactly Right
RedStateVT offers a preliminary "thumbs-up" to President Obama for his statement that he intends to "finish the job" in Afghanistan. This is exactly the type of resolve that the world needs to hear and we hope he follows through.

Monday, November 23, 2009

So Much for "Settled Science!"

As a follow-up to an item in yesterday's RedstateVT post: Sunday Funnies - Climate Confusion:

The tiny, close-knit clique of climate scientists who invented and now drive the “global warming” fraud — for fraud is what we now know it to be — tampered with temperature data so assiduously that, on the recent admission of one of them, land temperatures since 1980 have risen twice as fast as ocean temperatures. One of the thousands of emails recently circulated by a whistleblower at the University of East Anglia, where one of the world’s four global-temperature datasets is compiled, reveals that data were altered so as to prevent a recent decline in temperature from showing in the record. In fact, there has been no statistically significant “global warming” for 15 years — and there has been rapid and significant cooling for nine years. (

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sunday Funnies

The Next "60" May Be Tougher
She (Blanche Lincoln, D-Arkansas) added: “But let me be perfectly clear. I am opposed to a new government-administered health care plan as a part of comprehensive health insurance reform, and I will not vote in favor of the proposal that has been introduced by leader Reid as it is written.” But Senator Lieberman, who voted to take up the health care bill, said he was still staunchly opposed to a government-run plan. It is “a terrible idea,” he said. (NYT, 11/22/09)

Senator for Sale
Ms. Landrieu (D-Louisiana), whose support came after she won a provision that could be worth more than $100 million in additional federal aid for her financially troubled state, said, “I have decided there are enough significant reforms and safeguards in this bill to move forward, but much more work needs to be done.” (NYT, 11/22/09)

Let the Circus Begin
The five men the Justice Department has said will be charged in the attacks of Sept. 11 intend to plead not guilty so they can express their political and religious views during a trial, the lawyer for one of the men said on Saturday. (NYT, 11/21.2009)

California Breakdown
At the Peace in Medicine Healing Center in Sebastopol, the wares on display include dried marijuana — featuring brands like Kryptonite, Voodoo Daddy and Train Wreck — and medicinal cookies arrayed below a sign saying, “Keep Out of Reach of Your Mother.”

The warning tells a story of its own: some of the center’s clients are too young to buy themselves a beer.

Several Bay Area doctors who recommend medical marijuana for their patients said in recent interviews that their client base had expanded to include teenagers with psychiatric conditions including attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. (NYT, 11/21/2009)

Climate Confusion
Hundreds of private e-mail messages and documents hacked from a computer server at a British university are causing a stir among global warming skeptics, who say they show that climate scientists conspired to overstate the case for a human influence on climate change….In several e-mail exchanges, Kevin Trenberth, a climatologist at the National Ceneter for Atmospheric Research, and other scientists discuss gaps in understanding of recent variations in temperature. Skeptic Web sites pointed out one line in particular: “The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t,” Dr. Trenberth wrote. (NYT, 11/20/2009)

Al Gore's award-winning global warming film "An Inconvenient Truth," socked two years ago by a British court ruling that found several errors, is facing additional scrutiny with the release of a new documentary that seeks to rebut many of Gore's claims.

Buoyed by the ruling, two Irish journalists -- Phelim McAleer and Ann McElhinney -- released a documentary in which they gather evidence outlining the damage of global warming hysteria. In "Not Evil Just Wrong," they challenge the claims made in Gore's film and conclude that the film is not worth screening in schools because it is shown there as "an article of science, not faith." ( 11/22/2009)

Friday, November 20, 2009

Six Questions for Harry Reid

With respect to the Health Care Bill:

1) If a large portion of the savings in your bill will come from eliminating waste and fraud in the system, why hasn't this been tackled before? RedStateVT notes that you were first elected to the Senate in 1986 and are currently serving your fourth term.

2) A large portion of the American population has deep moral and religious objections to abortion. Will you respect the beliefs of these people and guarantee unequivocally and with no loopholes that federal money will not be used for these purposes?

3) Will your bill include tort reform to protect doctors from frivolous lawsuits?

4) Will your bill guarantee unequivocally that individuals who are in this country illegally will not be covered?

5) Will your bill guarantee unequivocally that services and benefits for senior citizens will not be curtailed or reduced?

6) Will you give the representatives who will vote on the final bill the time to read the bill....and insist that they do? Likewise, will you do the same for the American people?

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Holder on the Hot Seat

Remember this?

Barack Obama didn’t take long to make an impact on the issue of Guantanamo Bay. Within hours of assuming office, President Obama issued an order suspending all military tribunals for 120 days. Today’s hearing for Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was among those delayed until May 20th, while Obama decides what to do. (, January 21, 2009)

And then this?

Attorney General Eric Holder: "After years of delay, those responsible for the attacks of September 11 will finally face justice." (, November 13, 2009)

The day after he takes office, Obama suspends KSM'S tribunal hearing! But Holder is comforted that KSM will finally face justice! (our emphasis)

A reminder that Holder is largely credited (discredited?) with orchestrating the Marc Rich pardon in the waning days of the Clinton Presidency when Bill and Hill were busy stealing the White House silverware.

Holder also called the U.S. "a nation of cowards" when it comes to issues of race.....this shortly after the first African-American President was elected and days after he was appointed the first African-American Attorney General.

You can't make stuff like this up!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Quote of the Day

“China effectively stage-managed President Obama’s public appearances, got him to make statements endorsing Chinese positions of political importance to them and effectively squelched discussions of contentious issues such as human rights and China’s currency policy,” said Eswar S. Prasad, a China specialist at Cornell University. “In a masterstroke, they shifted the public discussion from the global risks posed by Chinese currency policy to the dangers of loose monetary policy and protectionist tendencies in the U.S.” (New York Times, 11/18/2009)

Up to the job?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Image Matters

President Obama has ignited yet another flap after he practically touches his shoes with his forehead in a deep bow to Japanese Emperor Akihito. Here is an account of the incident: ( This, of course, comes after Obama previously bowed to the Saudi leaders and after he publicly talked of American mistakes. Obama’s aim, of course, is to demonstrate humility to the world, to show that he is not Bush, the arrogant cowboy. In doing so, he hopes to curry favor with other countries in order to advance his strategic goals. Only it won’t work and here’s why.

Obama is playing on an international stage and the people there who he needs to influence view such gestures as a sign of one thing only: weakness. Think of the world’s bad boy leaders and rouge power players: Chavez in Venezuela, Assad in Syria, Ahmadinejad in Iran, Castro in Cuba, that crazy dwarf in North Korea, whoever is speaking for the Palestinians, bin Laden, etc. How does this group react when the President of the strongest nation on the planet bows and scrapes and apologizes? We suspect they are not saying to themselves……"well OK, we got our mea culpa, let’s all just find a way to get along now." More likely, they are saying: we got ‘em on the run, press the advantage!

Because Americans are the people that they are, Obama’s approach would work if the national stage was the only platform. We like a dose of humility in our leaders which is why politicians always try to position themselves as average Joes, whether or not it’s true (see Biden, Joseph). But the image of the President of the United States, through what he does and what he says, is instantaneously projected internationally. The President cannot allow that image to be seen as weak. Only bad things will result.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Depends on what your definition of success is.....

After an hourlong meeting in Singapore on Sunday afternoon, Mr. Obama managed to get President Dmitri A. Medvedev of Russia to express dissatisfaction with Iran’s response to a nuclear offer made by world powers, raising the prospect that sanctions may be the next step in the West’s continuing effort to rein in Tehran’s nuclear ambitions.......“The reset button has worked,” Mr. Obama said after the meeting, alluding to the administration’s early promise to press a “reset” button in America’s relationship with Russia after several years of bickering over a host of issues like missile defense and the status of Kosovo. (New York Times, 11/15/2009)

So let's get this straight. President Obama stiffs erstwhile allies Poland and the Czech Republic by outright cancelling a missile defense program and in return Russian President Medvedev "expresses dissatisfaction" with Iran which, in turn, "raises the prospect of sanctions." This guy Obama is one heck of a negotiator. Can you even imagine the laugh they are having back in Moscow? "Hey Dmitri, let's see if we can get him to give us Alaska back!"

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Weekend Grab Bag

Barack Obama: Deficit Hawk
President Barack Obama plans to announce in next year's State of the Union address that he wants to focus extensively on cutting the federal deficit in 2010 – and will downplay other new domestic spending beyond jobs programs, according to top aides involved in the planning. (, 11/13/2009)

Notwithstanding the "too cool for school" guise that the White House put on the recent election results, it turns out that Obama may have been watching after all. RedStateVT believes that Democrats will get hammered at the polls next year over runaway spending. And so the Spender-in-Chief is now forced to begin redefining himself. Good luck, we don't think Americans are going to buy it (pun intended).

Hope Eric Holder Doesn't Find Out!
Federal prosecutors have taken steps to seize four U.S. mosques and a Manhattan skyscraper owned by a nonprofit Muslim organization long suspected of being secretly controlled by the Iranian government. (, 11/13/2009)

Gore Redux
As a followup to RedStateVT's recent post (Al's Gored, 11/6/2009) we note the following from the 11/11/2009 column by WSJ opinion writer Holman Jenkins (one of our favorites!) on Enviro-Al: When so much of his position and prestige are invested in a predicted climate crisis, is Mr. Gore likely to be open to contrary evidence? Is he likely to be particularly fastidious about whether proposed steps will actually have an effect on global warming if they also happen to benefit his investments?

Good questions indeed!

Local Scene
The Vermont Gubernatorial race is getting started and we got a chuckle out of the Vermont Republican Party's characterization of the ever increasing roster of opposing candidates: What doesn't bode well for the Democrats is the 5 person (plus Anthony Polina?) "who's the biggest moonbat" catfight that's about to ensue. Get your popcorn ready.

For some, the biggest sin in Vermont politics is not being liberal enough!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Guns and Butter

A friend sent RedStateVT New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof's 11/11/2009 Opinion piece (America's Defining Choice) and asked for comment. Short answer? How does sophomoric stuff like this get published? Kristof first sets up the old guns versus butter question, using the "choice" of more troops in Afghanistan versus more money for health care. He then rolls out the tired liberal shibboleth of the poor victim. Here it takes the form of the hardworking single mom (she works two jobs!) who can't afford health insurance, gets cancer and dies. Kristof writes: "...she felt she couldn't afford to splurge on herself to get gynecological checkups. For more than a dozen years, she never had a Pap smear." A dozen years? In a dozen years, she never could afford it? Putting aside the question of personal responsibility, what were the choices she did make during those dozen years? Kristof doesn't say, of course. Truly our heart goes out to this woman and her daughter, but to hold her up as the reason that we need Obama's health care fix is laughable. There are other targets that Kristof could just as easily pick, but avoids. How about the bailout for GM versus health care? Is it better to keep a moribund car company alive or to fix health care? When in doubt, however, liberals like Kristof will always scrimp on national defense.

Afghan Decision Update -- Latest word is that President Obama is not happy with the options that he has been given on Afghanistan and it's back to the drawing board. We're a bit perplexed because we guess the options would have included: A) 40,000 troops that your hand-picked General asked for, B) something less than 40,000 troops, and C) no new troops. The Ditherer-in Chief instead chooses D) none of the above.

It has now been 74 days since General McChrystal made his request.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Political Correctness Body Count: +13

Some things would be laughable if they weren't so sad. The Fort Hood massacre shows us once again that silly PC thinking has deadly consequences. What kind of twisted logic allows a Muslim jihadist to remain in the military in the name of diversity? What kind of myopia refuses to admit that this massacre of innocent lives was anything other than another act of Islamic terrorism?

RedStateVT makes no excuses for the military brass who knew and did not act, but this is the same military who have been beaten down for years by the PC crowd over women, gays, minorities, Muslims, fill-in-the-blank, in the military.

And then we have the Left Wing Media falling over themselves warning us not to "jump to conclusions." Chris Matthews (now about on par with Dan Rather in the credibility index) ponders 'whether contacting Al Qaeda is a crime.' Alan Colmes says that 'we don't even have a clear definition of terrorism.'

Well here is where RedStateVT stands: if someone yells "Allahu Akbar" and starts shooting we are jumping to the conclusion that it meets the definition of terrorism.

Post Script:
Chicago Mayor Richard Daley pointed to America's "love" affair with guns as the driving factor behind last week's shooting at Fort Hood, becoming the latest and possibly most prominent figure to show a reluctance to cite religion (Fox 11/11/2009)

You can't make stuff like this up.....

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Never Mind What The People Say!

From the Burlington Free Press, 11/10/2009:
As the spotlight on health care reform shifts from the House to the more conservative Senate, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., will be pushing for a hard left turn in the form of a single-payer system. The Vermont independent acknowledges that a plan to create a national single-payer system like Canada’s, in which the federal government would be the only source of financing for all health care services, isn’t politically viable..... He also has requested a vote on a national single-payer system, which even he predicts would fail. “But I think it’s important we have it, because I think there are many millions of Americans who understand ... that is the only solution to providing comprehensive, universal, cost-effective health care to all Americans,” Sanders said. (emphasis RedStateVT)

So Corporal Sanders admits that his plan is a non-starter and would be rejected by the people, but it makes sense........why?

Monday, November 9, 2009

A Multiple Choice Question

Twelve U.S. servicemen are brutally gunned down by a fellow soldier. In his first public appearance after the massacre, the President of the United States begins by doing which of the following:

A) Offering condolences to the family of the dead soldiers.
B) Reassuring Americans that this was a random act of violence.
C) Vowing to uncover all the facts related to the tragedy.
D) Offering a "shout out" to a Native American medicine man.

If you guessed D) then you are a winner!

Thinking Americans can certainly disagree about Obama's policies. However, RedStateVT wonders whether even his supporters secretly question whether he has the necessary gravitas for the job.

Here's a good post on the incident:

Saturday, November 7, 2009

"I thought they were begonias!"

Barney Frank (a.k.a. Captain Renault) is shocked, shocked to find out there was pot smoking going on.......

Rep. Barney Frank admitted Friday that he was sitting on the porch of his partner’s Maine home when police came to arrest his partner for marijuana possession. Frank, responding to new reports that he was present during the Aug. 2007 arrest of James Ready, said in a statement he was unaware Ready had marijuana plants. According to a police report obtained by MyFoxBoston, Maine police arrested and charged James Ready with marijuana possession, cultivation and use of drug paraphernalia. He pleaded guilty to civil possession and paid a fine. The remaining charges were dismissed last year. Frank was not charged. (, 11/6/2009)

Friday, November 6, 2009

Al's Gored

It's been a tough stretch for enviro-alarmist Al Gore. First video surfaces of him being questioned at a speech about inaccuracies and errors in his horror documentary An Inconvenient Truth. Then the PETA folks come after him. Back story: apparently a study has shown that the carbon cost of raising livestock from birth to your dinner plate is far higher than that of tooling around in our SUVs. PETA's challenge to Gore: become a vegetarian. Finally, Gore is reported (NYT 11/3/2009) to have made millions of dollars investing in various alternative energy ventures. At RedStateVT, we love capitalism and applaud those who have achieved financial success. But doesn't it seem just a bit dishonest that Gore has used his bully pulpit to champion a controversial cause for immense personal financial gain?

For those who want an historical view of climate change and weather patterns RedStateVT recommends: The Great Warming, Climate Change and the Rise and Fall of Civilizations by Brian Fagan, 2008, Bloomsbury Press. Fagan meticulously documents the effects on culture and civilization of a naturally occurring warming during the medieval period (800 - 1300AD). RedStateVT is fairly certain that there were no automobiles then, and yet miraculously there was a significant increase in temperature which led to both drought and famine in some areas and thawing and increased agricultural production in other places. We have always thought it unfathomable that the enviro-crowd apparently believes that humankind is entitled to constant and predictable weather.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Insightful Election Result Analysis.....Not

Today the New York Times web site analyzes the results of yesterday's elections and apparently concludes that the biggest story is feuding between Conservatives and Republicans. Those of you who might have thought it was the defeat of two candidates that President Obama campaigned for must be wrong....

Meanwhile, we are again reminded that Dede Scozzafava is a "moderate" Republican. Under this definition, RedStateVT concludes that Corporal Bernie Sanders must fit the profile of a "moderate" Democrat.

The Times also reports: "As they assessed the results, Democratic lawmakers and party strategists said their judgment was that voters remained very uneasy about the economy and did not see Democrats producing on the health, energy and national security changes they promised when voters swept them to power only a year ago." So those of you who interpreted the defeat of Democrat gubernatorial candidates as a rejection of Obama's policies are also apparently wrong.... The results instead should be interpreted as voter frustration that Obama and his party have not passed health care, cap and trade, closed Gitmo and retreated in Afghanistan.

You can't make up spin like this.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Headline You Won't See

Wall Street Billionaire Defeated in Governor Race!
It was actually a bit disconcerting to watch (now outgoing) New Jersey Governor Corzine clinging to President Obama during their campaign appearances. Corzine looked like a drowning swimmer desperately trying to stay afloat. Along with the Republican victory in Virginia, Dem candidates in 2010 are now going to have to think long and hard about their campaign strategies. (See RedStateVT's 10/30/09 post: Thanks, But No Thanks).

Dem spin points to exit polling which purports to show that voters were responding to local issues and that they didn't consider the elections to be about Obama. In that case, we urge the Obamacrat party to stay the course! (And by the way, we can't wait for 2010...)

Other Election Notes
How would one categorize a politician who supported gay marriage, abortion, and the Obama stimulus plan and who endorsed the Democrat candidate in a local election? Well the New York Times would call that politician a "moderate Republican." We would call that person (Dede Scozzafava, by the way) an Arlen Specter Democrat. Of course, the agenda of the New York Times was to paint Conservative Doug Hoffman as an extremist and the way to do that is to label Scozzafava as a moderate.

RedStateVT got a real kick out of the feigned detachment of the White House this election cycle. Obama was said to not be following the results all that closely (even after making campaign appearances with both losing candidates). Previously Obama was also described as vaguely aware of the flap with Fox News (orchestrated by his inner circle of advisors). This is the same Obama who never heard his pastor make incendiary racial remarks. Doesn't this guy ever pay attention?

The New York Times also reported the following this morning regarding the defeat of same-sex marriage in Maine: "With the repeal, Maine became the 31st state to reject same-sex marriage at the ballot box. Five other states — Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, New Hampshire and Vermont — have legalized same-sex marriage, but only through court rulings and legislative action." It appears that voters consistently support traditional values, unlike judges and politicians.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Obama's Disastrous Year

First in a Series
"January made me shiver...."

In remarks that some found objectionable, Reverend Joseph Lowery’s inaugural benediction included the following: “…we ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get in back, when brown can stick around … when yellow will be mellow … when the red man can get ahead, man; and when white will embrace what is right.”

--Fox News commentator Cal Thomas remarks presciently: “Here's what's going to happen. As long as Obama continues high in the polls and is perceived as doing well, it (race) won't be a problem, nobody will talk about it. But when he starts making mistakes and criticism begins against him, look for a Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton or a Joseph Lowery to raise the race card.”

Chief Justice John Roberts re-administers the oath of office to Obama one day later after they mix-up the words during the official swearing in.

Obama issues an executive order to close down Guantanamo prison in one year. Attorney General Eric Holder says the deadline will be difficult to meet.

On his third day in office, Obama issues a statement reaffirming his commitment to protecting abortion rights. Later in the week he repeals rules that restrict federal money for international organizations that promote or provide abortions overseas.

Obama issues new rules on government transparency and ethics and new limits on lobbyists saying: “For a long time now there’s been too much secrecy in this city. Transparency and rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency.”

--On January 28, Fox News reports:
The White House on Wednesday defended Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner's choice of Mark Patterson - an ex-lobbyist from Goldman Sachs - to be his chief of staff. The selection is at least the third high-profile exception to a policy by President Barack Obama that says no one who has lobbied on a set of issues within the past two years can take a role in his administration that deals with the same subject matter.

--On January 31, the New York Times reports:
President Obama’s pick for health and human services secretary, Tom Daschle, failed to pay more than $128,000 in taxes, partly for free use of a car and driver that had been provided to him by a prominent businessman and Democratic fund-raiser, administration officials said Friday……….The confirmation of Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner was held up only briefly after the disclosure that he had failed to pay more than $34,000 in taxes owed to the federal government.

The January Consumer Confidence Index hits a new low.

The House passes a $819 billion stimulus bill with no Republican support. Obama remarks: "I am grateful to the House of Representatives for moving the American Recovery and Reinvestment plan forward today. There are many numbers in this plan. It will double our capacity to generate renewable energy, it will lower the cost of healthcare by billions and improve its quality. It will modernize thousands of classrooms and send more kids to college, and it will put billions of dollars in immediate tax relief into the pockets of working families.”

Obama conducts his first televised interview from the White House…..with Al Arabiya, an Arabic-language channel based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. He says: “….Americans are not your enemy” and “we sometimes make mistakes…”