Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Which Way The Wind Blows

We've been protesting the Keystone XL pipeline, which would link the refineries of Texas to the tar sands of Alberta, the second-biggest pool of carbon on the planet. And it's that carbon which in turn links all this to Vermont's weather. It's not mere chance that we've had one of the biggest snowpacks on record, followed by the wettest spring on record, followed now by a hurricane bearing almost unprecedented loads of water. It's simply physics.  (Bill McKibben, Bulrington Free Press, 8/30/2011)

McKibben takes time out from protesting the possibility of getting cheap oil from a friendly country (No blood for oil!) to remind us that Hurricane Irene is all man's fault.  Meanwhile, he probably hasn't had time to read the following...

Best known for its studies of the fundamental constituents of matter, the CERN particle-physics laboratory in Geneva is now also being used to study the climate. Researchers in the CLOUD collaboration have released the first results from their experiment designed to mimic conditions in the Earth’s atmosphere. By firing beams of particles from the lab’s Proton Synchrotron accelerator into a gas-filled chamber, they have discovered that cosmic rays could have a role to play in climate by enhancing the production of potentially cloud-seeding aerosols. –Physics World, 24 August 2011 (Link from Climate Depot)

Unfortunately, the climate change crowd are among the most closed-minded people you will ever meet.  Their livelihoods depend upon hyping every storm and every drought as man-made.  No doubt they will ignore or slough this off just as they did the East Anglia e-mail scandal.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Precarious Pandemonium

Slow Death
The Lockerbie bomber is believed to still be in Tripoli where he is dying of prostate cancer, Scotland's government said Monday, citing parole officials who had contact with the man's family....Al-Megrahi was convicted in 2001 over the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103, which killed 270 people. He was freed from a Scottish jail on compassionate grounds in August 2009 after doctors estimated he had only three months to live due to the cancer.  (Huffington Post, 8/30/2011)

So let's not trust Scotland's government this time, OK?

Tone Deaf
Some senior administration officials involved in the discussions noted that the tone set on this Sept. 11 should be shaped by a recognition that the outpouring of worldwide support for the United States in the weeks after the attacks turned to anger at some American policies adopted in the name of fighting terror — on detention, on interrogation, and the decision to invade Iraq. 

So the guidelines aimed at foreign audiences also call on American officials to praise overseas partners and their citizens, who have joined the worldwide effort to combat violent extremism.  (NYT, 8/30/2011)

The more we think about this, the angrier we get.  It is classic Obama.  The gist of which is - on a national day of remembrance - we have to be sensitive to how the rest of the world thinks because they did not like that we aggressively defended ourselves against terrorism.  But, it is even worse!  We have to thank them for their help.  Well, let's compare the body counts...

Lights Out
Not since the grim period after World War II has Germany had significant blackouts, but it is now bracing for that possibility after shutting down half its nuclear reactors practically overnight....on most days, Germany has survived this experiment only by importing electricity from neighboring France and the Czech Republic, which generate much of their power with nuclear reactors. ...Then there are real concerns that the plan will jettison efforts to rein in manmade global warming, since whatever nuclear energy’s shortcomings, it is low in emissions. (NYT, 8/30/2011)

Loved this one as it must have the enviros contorted.  So Germany shuts down nuclear reactors (Go Green!).  But it has to import electricity generated by....nuclear reactors.  Such nuclear reactors which are cleaner than alternatives like burning coal.  What's a person to think?

Monday, August 29, 2011

Could Have Been On Easy Street

Lucky or Crazy?
When it comes to energy, America is lucky to be next to Canada, whose proven oil reserves are estimated by Oil and Gas Journal at 175 billion barrels. This ranks just behind Saudi Arabia (260 billion) and Venezuela (211 billion) and ahead of Iran (137 billion) and Iraq (115 billion). True, about 97 percent of Canada’s reserves consist of Alberta’s controversial oil sands, but new technologies and high oil prices have made them economically viable. Expanded production can provide the U.S. market with a growing source of secure oil for decades.

We would be crazy to turn our back on this.  (Robert J. Samuelson, Washington Post, 8/28/2011)

This is what the McKibben crowd is now protesting.  They don't want foreign wars for foreign oil, but then again, they don't want oil from good neighbors. What they want is the solar-powered car.  Where do we stand on that, by the way?

Perp Walk
An illegal immigrant from Kenya busted for drunken driving after nearly striking a cop car in Framingham is the uncle of President Obama, the Herald has learned.

Obama Onyango told cops he wanted to “call the White House” after he was nabbed for OUI Aug. 24 after nearly plowing his SUV into a police cruiser. He was arraigned Thursday and was ordered held without bail because he was wanted on a federal immigration warrant, officials said.  (Boston Herald, 8/29/2011)

Kudos to Howie Carr who is apparently almost the only one reporting this story.  We suspect the president is embarrassed enough and that is not RedStateVT's point.  Our point is that the state-controlled media will not report this story.  This after they wrote endless stories about Neal Bush.  Ho-hum, more journalistic hypocrisy.

No Laughing Matter
Former Vice President Al Gore is comparing the struggle to win over climate change skeptics to the fight against racism.  (, 8/28/2011)

OK, this isn't funny anymore.  There is something seriously wrong with Ethanol Al.  He needs to be under a doctor's care.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Moving Violation

The Better Parts
For the better part of the last two years, President Obama’s saving grace has been his image as a strong leader who people like and trust, regardless of the issues of the day. 

Even that is starting to erode.  A new Pew Research Center survey shows the American people are increasingly skeptical about the president’s leadership bona fides.

A record high number of people say that Obama is not a strong leader (47 percent), can’t get things done (50 percent), isn’t well-informed (33 percent), is not a good communicator (22 percent) and doesn’t stand up for what he believes in (22 percent).

It’s hardly the picture of a man with major image problems, but the numbers do represent some of the first cracks in in the image Obama has crafted for himself, and that could lead to problems down the line. (Aaron Blake and Rachel Weiner, Washington Post, 8/26/2011)

It strikes us that Blake and Weiner are a bit late-to-the-game with the analysis that Obama's image is "starting to fade."  But, do they really believe that he does not have "major image problems" that could  cause "problems down the road?"  Which deserted island have they been living on?

But a soaring jobless rate among African Americans and a newfound comfort by black lawmakers to criticize Obama’s economic policies are prompting the White House to recalibrate — and to focus more directly on the struggles of black America.

The shift comes amid a growing concern among some Democrats that the stubborn economic conditions in minority communities might hamper efforts by Obama’s reelection campaign to generate the large black voter turnout it needs in key cities to make up for his declining support among white independents. (Washington Post, 8/26/2011)

This one gave us pause.  The implication seems to be that the Administration is going to focus on "the struggles of black America" in order to get re-elected.

Republicans say they are increasingly happy with the 2012 Republican presidential field — which probably has a lot to do with the rise of Rep. Michele Bachmann and Texas Gov. Rick Perry.

New data from an AP-Gfk poll shows that, while just 52 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents were satisfied with the field two months ago, that number is now at 64 percent.

But were they ever actually that upset?

Data from the Pew Research Center suggests that voters have historically been similarly hesitant to embrace their options early in the presidential campaign, and that the 2012 GOP presidential field isn’t as full of unappealing misfits as some wagered. (Washington Post, 8/26/2011)

Every once in a while the Washington Post surprises us.  

The Name of the Beast
Hurricane Irene hadn’t even made landfall in the United States before some people figured out what to blame it on.

“Irene’s got a middle name, and it’s Global Warming,” environmental activist Bill McKibben wrote Thursday night in The Daily Beast. He argued that this year’s hot Atlantic Ocean temperatures and active spree of hurricanes — coupled with droughts, floods and melting sea ice elsewhere on the globe — are “what climate change looks like in its early stages.”  (, 8/27/2011)

There have been hurricanes since the beginning of time, but Middlebury College's resident enviro-alarmist has now got it figured out.  The good thing, however, is that every time McKibben opens his mouth he exposes further the lunacy of his "cause." 

Thursday, August 25, 2011

So Much To Tell You

Why We Love Dick Cheney
Former Vice President Dick Cheney says in a new memoir that he urged President George W. Bush to bomb a suspected Syrian nuclear reactor site in June 2007. (NYT, 8/24/2011)

The media keeps asking Dick Cheney if he has any regrets and he keeps saying no!

New York's Finest
Since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, the New York Police Department has become one of the nation's most aggressive domestic intelligence agencies, targeting ethnic communities in ways that would run afoul of civil liberties rules if practiced by the federal government, an Associated Press investigation has found. (Huffington Post, 8/25/2011)

The folks at the ACLU are surely beside themselves over this one. Lest you have any doubts, however, consider this...

Police operations have disrupted terrorist plots and put several would-be killers in prison.

"The New York Police Department is doing everything it can to make sure there's not another 9/11 here and that more innocent New Yorkers are not killed by terrorists," NYPD spokesman Paul Browne said. "And we have nothing to apologize for in that regard."

Amen, brother. Thank you for keeping us safe.

Much Ado
Have you noticed the state-controlled media attempting to whip up a feud between Karl Rove and Sarah Palin?  Rove is not officially advising any Republican candidate and Palin is not a candidate.  Nonetheless, we get endless updates of the purported "feud" between the two.  Guess it beats talking about the unemployment numbers.

Justice in the Green Mountain State
Burlington police say a man arrested earlier this summer for breaking into an occupied apartment and then released on conditions has committed a similar crime — and then was released on identical conditions. (Burlington Free Press, 8/25/2011)

You cannot make this stuff up.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Treatise on the Liberal

RedStateVT is pleased to present today an original work of Hessian analysis: Treatise on the Liberal.  Bear in mind that this is a work-in-progress, a living document, that will grow in both size and impact over time.  Enjoy!

Liberals believe it is wrong to kill murderers, but alright to kill the unborn.

Liberals want CEOs to be accountable, but not teachers.

Liberals say they want a strong national defense, but will always cut defense spending first.

Liberals want to outlaw fast food, but legalize illicit drugs.

Liberals are not materialistic, but they want to redistribute your money to others.

Liberals hated Ronald Reagan, but love Fidel Castro.

Liberals support women’s rights, but protected Ted Kennedy and Bill Clinton.

Liberals support the separation of church and state, but believe Islam should be studied in schools.

Liberals think Sarah Palin is a lightweight, but Nancy Pelosi is a statesman.

Liberals stick up for minorities and the poor, but promote policies that enslave them.

Liberals want the military off college campuses, but believe gays should be allowed to serve.

Liberals believe that there is almost no problem that cannot be solved by increasing taxes.

Liberals believe in the rights of the individual, unless that individual does not want to join a union.

Liberals are particularly sympathetic toward criminals and people who are in this country illegally.

Liberals believe that the rich have probably committed crimes, unless they support liberal policies.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Pull On Your Coat About Something

The Headline War on the Right
Back To School In Texas: Scrutiny Of Rick Perry's Education Record Shows Mixed Results (Huffington Post Headline, 8/23/2011)

Romney plans to quadruple size of Calif. home (Washington Post Headline, 8/22/2011)

In  other news, Barack took the girls out for ice cream yesterday.

Pump It Up
The AFL-CIO is getting ready to pump even more money into elections by forming a super PAC and targeting developments in the states, the Associated Press reported Monday. (, 8/23/2011)

We'll take a guess that there will be no outraged voices from the Left decrying the pernicious effects of big-moneyed special interests.

Sunday, August 21, 2011


History Making
But a review of Mr. Perry’s years in office reveals that one of his most potent fund-raising tools is the very government he heads.  Over three terms in office, Mr. Perry’s administration has doled out grants, tax breaks, contracts and appointments to hundreds of his most generous supporters and their businesses. And they have helped Mr. Perry raise more money than any politician in Texas history, donations that have periodically raised eyebrows but, thanks to loose campaign finance laws and a business-friendly political culture dominated in recent years by Republicans, have only fueled Mr. Perry’s ascent.  (NYT, 8/21/2011)

The hit pieces on Governor Rick Perry are now well underway.  We have already had the "College Transcript Revelation."  Now the "Dirty Money" article.  Forthcoming will be the "Allegations of Extramarital Affairs" article and then the "Suspicions of Alcohol Abuse" piece.  This is how Republican candidates get vetted.  Meanwhile, still no in-depth look at Obama's admitted drug use.  Oh well, that's old news.  Instead we get the Vineyard Update: turns out Obama is meeting with his advisers, so it is not really, technically a vacation.  Also, he and Michelle had a private dinner. Stayed tuned for more updates.

Reflections Of
President Barack Obama says his low approval rating is a reflection of public unhappiness with Congress. (NYT, 8/21/2011)

The president mans up.....not!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Right Outside Your Door

Mint Julep
Newly-minted presidential candidate Rick Perry got a taste Thursday of the rough-and-tumble nature of presidential politics, with protesters dogging him on the campaign trail, demanding to know whether he thinks Social Security is unconstitutional and begging him to follow through on threats of Texas seceding. (Washington Post, 8/20/2011)

In a "barking dog" story the Washington Post breathtakingly writes that Governor Rick Perry was Democrats!

“He’s appealing to the tea party,” said Larry Drake, a retired federal worker and Democrat who said he came Thursday to show his opposition to the Republican governor. (Washington Post, 8/20/2011)

This is news?

Victims Rights
Leaders are elected to lead (from the front, incidentally). That means dealing with events, not plaintively claiming to be their victim. (Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post, 8/19/2011)

One of RedStateVT's aphorisms is that you get the presidency that you get.  George Bush certainly did not want 9/11, but that is the presidency that he got and those were the circumstances that he dealt with for eight years.  Barack Obama likewise did not want a recessionary economy, but that is what he got.  How has he dealt with it?  Well, so far he has tried the blame game and - when that grew old - he has now switched to playing the victim card.  How unpresidential! 

Repeat After
...he spent his political capital on the largely irrelevant issue of health care. Now he wants to become the jobs candidate, mainly through the repetition of the word “jobs.” (Michael Gerson, Washington Post, 8/19/2011)

Good point by Gerson and one that RedStateVT has made.  Namely, the Left ignored the economy for two years pushing their unwanted health care agenda.  Then, when the polls told them that their flagging numbers were a result of high unemployment, they all start chanting "jobs."  We note that even Vermont's Colonel Sanders has taken time out from his usual calls for wealth redistribution to echo the jobs mantra.  Of course, what the Left wants are more union and public sectors jobs.....

Friday, August 19, 2011

Nantucket Sleigh Ride

Mr. Obama, who is on his third summer vacation on Martha’s Vineyard as president, is expected to fall into a time-tested schedule of golf, bike rides and ice-cream outings with his daughters and a couple of dinners out with his wife, Michelle. (NYT, 8/19/2011)

Loyal readers know that RedStateVT does not begrudge the president either a round of golf or a summer vacation.  Being president is a full time job.  If Obama wants to party on Nantucket with his Wall Street backers or hedge fund friends, that is fine.  We have asked for only one thing: a public apology from the Left for criticisms directed against George Bush for his golf and his vacations.  The following are invited to offer up said apology: Keith Olbermann, the Washington Post editorial page or James Carville.  To date, no apology.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Since You Asked

Under the Lights
The president and his aides have repeatedly sought to claim the national spotlight with speeches during difficult political moments. But expectations are always high for such addresses, and there are few examples in which a speech by Mr. Obama has dramatically helped to change the political or legislative narrative in his favor.  (NYT, 8/18/2011)

Another myth debunked: Obama the Orator.

You call tell how unhappy Republicans are by reading the Wall Street Journal editorial page, the one-stop shop for conservative orthodoxy. 

An actual quote from E.J. Dionne Jr., the one stop shop for progressive orthodoxy. (Washington Post, 8/18/2011)

On the Decline
Since the Cold War’s end, the combined gross domestic product of NATO’s European members has grown 55 percent, yet their defense spending has declined almost 20 percent. Twenty years ago, those nations provided 33 percent of the alliance’s defense spending; today, they provide 21 percent. (George Will, Washington Post, 8/17/2011)

Anyone want to venture a guess as to where the spending of NATO's European members has gone?  Correct answer is: increasingly expensive entitlement programs.  Liberals will always sacrifice national security for a larger welfare state.  And, by the way, threaten to reduce government largess even a teeny bit and guess what happens?  Correct answer is: the recipients of  those government handouts riot in the streets.


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Danger On The Rocks

Speed Bumps
Seeking a jolt for the economy, President Barack Obama will lay out new ideas for speeding up job growth and helping the struggling poor and middle class in a major speech in early September, a senior administration official told The Associated Press. (NYT, 8/17/2011)

The White House moves aggressively on the economy.....three weeks from now.  When the president returns from vacation....

Of the corporation, by the corporation, for the corporation. We the corporation. Corporations who need corporations are the luckiest corporations in the world. Power to the corporation! (Maureen Dowd, NYT, 8/13/2011)

Like most readers of the New York Times, RedStateVT usually avoids Maureen Dowd's columns because - over the years - they have become increasingly devoid of reality.  Her obsession with Bush I and II were so far over the edge that there was simply nothing to be gained from reading her.  Here she takes off in a similar fashion after Mitt Romney.  Mind you there is nothing insightful or honest about her attack.  She criticizes his hair, his speech, his religion, while never once offering anything of substance.  The quote above is as close as she gets to deep analysis. 

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Iron Gates of Time

Tea For One
And what a picture it is, a philosophy oriented around shrinking the role of the federal government in every imaginable way, by slashing spending, cutting taxes and halting or rescinding regulations. Their mantra is repeal and retrenchment, devoid of new initiatives or a positive agenda. (Steven Rattner, NYT, 8/15/2011)

Rattner doesn't like the Tea Party.  With enemies like Rattner, the Tea Party should be just fine:

Former Obama administration official Steven Rattner was sued by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo Thursday for his role in a pay-to-play scheme involving New York's pension fund. 

Rattner, the former auto czar, agreed to pay $6.2 million and to a two-year ban from associating with any investment adviser or broker-dealer to settle the SEC allegations, the SEC said Thursday. (New York Post, 11/18/2010)

Wave Goodbye
So what does the president have to offer the Midwest? The idea that the wave of the future is an ever-larger public sector financed by a more or less stagnant private sector looks increasingly absurd. (Michael Barone, WSJ, 8/16/2011)

We struggle to comprehend why this is not obvious to all.  Until, that is, you realize that if you are on the other side - the beneficiary of the largess - you will do whatever it takes to preserve the status quo.

Dip Down
President Obama's Gallup approval rating has dipped below 40%--or, as the White House prefers to put it, the president has saved or created 39 approval points. (James Taranto, WSJ, 8/16/2011)

Good one from Taranto!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Bitter Fruit

Mr. Breivik, 32, a self-described Christian crusader, was calm, cooperative and in control of his emotions, whatever they might have been, Paal-Fredrik Hjort Kraby, a police prosecutor, said Sunday in Oslo. (NYT, 8/15/2011)

RedStateVT has stayed on the sidelines in the debate over how lone psychopaths are described in the press...until now.  The Times is apparently fine with calling the Norway killer "a Christian crusader."  (They cover themselves by using the term "self-described.")  And the Fort Hood shooter?  Did they call him a self-described "soldier of Allah?"  We'll check and get back to you.

Genuine Articles
Mr. Obama was a genuine product of the political culture that had its birth among a marginal group of leftists in the early 1960s and that by the end of the decade had spread metastatically to the universities, the mainstream media, the mainline churches, and the entertainment industry. Like their communist ancestors of the 1930s, the leftist radicals of the '60s were convinced that the United States was so rotten that only a revolution could save it. (Norman Podhoretz, WSJ, 8/15/2011)

Notice how the loudest complaints about “broken politics” come from those who lost the debate. (Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post, 8/12/2011)

Two of the smartest guys out there.....

Book of Jobs
The GOP seems to believe that a federal, state or local job somehow isn’t a “real” job. I’ll bet most Americans know otherwise.(Eugene Robinson, Washington Post, 8/11/2011)

Well, Eugene, what is it exactly that a federal, state or local job creates?  More paperwork?  More obstacles to someone trying to create a product or deliver a service that people want?  Maybe they aren't real jobs, after all!

Sunday, August 14, 2011


Rest in Pieces
Mr. Obama’s political advisers are struggling to define a response, aware that their prospects may rest on persuading voters that the results of the first term matter less than the contrast between their vision for the next four years and the alternative economic ideas offered by Republicans.  (NYT, 8/14/2011) 

We had to read this one a couple of times.  So Obama will apparently run on the following: "Never mind what I did (or didn't do) during my first term.  I've got some great ideas for the next four years."

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, who made his fortune as co-founder of a profitable private equity company, has personal financial assets worth as much as $264 million, according to disclosure documents filed Friday.  (Washington Post, 8/12/2011)

This then will be the narrative of the state-controlled media's attacks on Romney: "He's rich." Let's take a quick look at some rich Democrats and how they got that way:

Barack Obama - shady Chicago real estate deal with convicted felon.
Harry Reid - shady Nevada real estate deal.
John Kerry - married wealthy widow.

Friday, August 12, 2011

The Rugged Road Through Barren Lands

"Corporations!" the protesters shouted, suggesting that Mr. Romney, as president, should raise taxes on large businesses. "Corporations are people, my friend," Mr. Romney responded, as the hecklers shouted back, "No, they're not!"  "Of course they are," Mr. Romney said, chuckling slightly. "Everything corporations earn ultimately goes to people. Where do you think it goes?" (NYT, 8/12/2011)

Good for Mitt Romney for standing up to this claptrap from the modern Democrat party, and practiced most egregiously by B. Hussein Obama and Colonel Bernie Sanders.  A corporation is not some evil entity running amok.  It is run by people, makes products that people use, pays salaries and benefits to people, pays dividend to people, invests in communities, makes charitable contributions, etc.  Get it Dems?

What would a real response to our problems involve? First of all, it would involve more, not less, government spending for the time being, with mass unemployment and incredibly low borrowing costs, we should be rebuilding our schools, our roads, our water systems and more. It would involve aggressive moves to reduce household debt via mortgage forgiveness and refinancing. And it would involve an all-out effort by the Federal Reserve to get the economy moving, with the deliberate goal of generating higher inflation to help alleviate debt problems. (Paul Krugman, NYT, 8/12/2011)

Discredited economist Krugman has the solution to America's economic malaise: more debt (how's that working so far?), more 'shovel-ready' projects (how'd that work out the last time?), allowing mortgage deadbeats to walk away (that's fair!) and inflation (just what America needs!).  Is this guy for real?

A federal appeals court has struck down the requirement in President Obama's health care overhaul package that virtually all Americans must carry health insurance or face penalties. (Washington Post, 8/12/2011)

It has been all downhill for Obama since he partied with rappers on his birthday: S&P downgrade, stock market free fall, Wisconsin recall failure and now another defeat for Obamacare. 

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Nothing Can Stand In Your Way

Done With Bonaparte
In conversations with folks across the center-left in recent days, everyone’s basically had it with the president. (Matt Miller, Washington Post, 8/10/2011)

The far left has had it with Obama....

It simply is wrong for the president to pursue the same messages,  the same talking points and the same approach he has previously taken. Once again, he is reverting to political gamesmanship: tacking to the left, tacking back to the center, pleasing no one and accomplishing nothing.   (Douglas E. Schoen,, 8/11/2011)

The center Left has had it with Obama....

(The British National Health Service) is sometimes adequate regarding medicine but is a sensational jobs program: It is the world’s sixth-largest employer (behind the Chinese army, Wal-Mart, China National Petroleum, China State Grid Corp. and Indian Railways). (George Will, Washington Post, 8/11/2011)

What Obamacare will bring.  (No one has a way with a statistic quite like George Will.)

We Await The Outrage
The financially strapped U.S. Postal Service is considering cutting as many as 120,000 jobs. Facing a second year of losses totaling $8 billion or more, the agency also wants to pull its workers out of the retirement and health benefits plans covering federal workers and set up its own benefit systems. (NYT, 8/11/2011)

Call Jesse Jackson! Call your favorite Hollywood celebrities! This shall not stand.  March on Washington!

“(Uber-Left billionaire George) Soros specifically stated, “Don’t worry it is yours, I am only putting it in the name of a company for tax purposes as I want to avoid paying gift taxes,” the complaint says. (NYT, 8/11/2011)

Seems Liberal billionaires/millionaires don't like to pay taxes either!  (John Kerry comes to mind.)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Hang Time

Former Burlington Chief Administrative Officer Jonathan Leopold explained under oath last month the city’s rationale for not revealing to the state the improper use of $17 million in general city funds to keep Burlington Telecom afloat in 2008 and 2009.  He said the plan was to get new commercial financing for Burlington Telecom — money which would allow repayment of the city money — and then announce the violation of the municipally owned utility’s state license to the Department of Public Service
“We would address the issue of non-compliance,” Leopold said, “when we felt we had a cure.” Since the beginning of summer, both state and federal prosecutors have declared they will not prosecute city officials or Burlington Telecom managers for financial mismanagement of the city-owned telecommunications provider.  (Burlington Free Press, 8/10/2011)

This is Progressive Justice: steal $17 million and avoid prosecution.  So - to put this in terms everyone can understand - if you steal a car (non-compliance) you will not be prosecuted if you return the car (cure).  Welcome to Vermont.

Bill McKibben: Europe is fascinating — it shows how modern societies can prosper with much higher fuel prices. Everyone over here has been paying $8 a gallon for gas since WWII, and hence, as if by magic, nice cities and fast trains. We can't get there overnight, but a reminder not to be scared of a lower-carbon future.  (Burlington Free Press, 8/10/2011)

To all you wealthy suburban parents looking for a good college to send junior to, consider that Middlebury College actually employs enviro-Luddite McKibben.  McKibben marvels at European prosperity.  By which he is referring to what....France? Ireland? Portugal? Greece?  Which of the bankrupt European countries with $8 per gallon gasoline does McKibben think the U.S. should emulate?

Go Big Or Go Home
Mr. President, it's time to go big on the economic solutions.  It's time to propose a massive second stimulus, offset by some serious tax hikes and budget cuts once the economy regains a semblance of good health.  (Harold Myerson, Washington Post, 8/10/2011)

Apparently Myerson has been in a coma for some time, or perhaps he has been away, visiting Mars.  Note to Myerson: Google "the Tea Party."  You will learn that a patriotic uprising of common Americans has handed out-of-control spending Democrats defeat after defeat.  A second 'massive stimulus' is a non-starter.  Sorry to tell you...

The Way
The Tea Party purists - those that see no shades of gray, no need for a balanced mix of revenue increases through closing tax loopholes for the wealthy and spending cuts - should take credit for the S&P downgrade.  They got their way. (Lanny Davis,, 8/10/2011)

Clinton-apologist-turned-Obama-apologist Davis apparently did not read the S&P report.  They said $4 trillion, not $2.4 trillion.  You can't blame the Tea Party if you haven't read the report, Mr. Davis.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

When Your Hands Are Shaking

Naming Names
And some of the exact same people — I can go down a list of their names — are involved in this. And so what do they do? They pay pseudo scientists to pretend to be scientists to put out the message: ‘This climate thing, it’s nonsense. Man-made CO2 doesn’t trap heat. It may be volcanoes.’ B***t! ‘It may be sun spots.’ B***t! ‘It’s not getting warmer.’ B***t!  (Al Gore)

(Note: expletives have been deleted, this being a family blog!)  It is hysterical (and yes, sad) when Liberals like Gulfstream Al become unhinged. This usually happens when the ridiculous policies they have been trying to hype are finally rejected - not by the Right - but by the average man on the street.  Ethanol Al's entire reputation has been riding on junk science and now the ride is coming to an end.

Yet when the stock market fell more than 500 points last week and the image that night was of the president whooping it up at his birthday party, the juxtaposition — just bad timing, of course — seemed appropriate. He does not seem to care. (Richard Cohen, Washington Post, 8/8/2011)

That is the enduring mystery of Obama’s presidency. He delivered his statement on the economy beneath a portrait of Abraham Lincoln, but that was as close as he came to forceful leadership. He looked grim and swallowed hard and frequently as he mixed fatalism (“markets will rise and fall”) with vague, patriotic exhortations (“this is the United States of America”).  “There will always be economic factors that we can’t control,” Obama said. Maybe. But it would be nice if the president gave it a try.  (Dana Milbank, Washington Post, 8/8/2011)

The Washington Post Liberals are clearly disheartened even as they struggle to defend an Obama Presidency that is looking more doomed everyday.  Will one of them have the guts to suggest that Obama step aside after his term is up and let a stronger Democrat candidate try?

Monday, August 8, 2011

Sing Bird of Prey

The real reason for White House fury at S&P is that it realizes how symbolically damaging this downgrade is to President Obama's economic record. Democrats can rail all they want about the tea party, but Republicans have controlled the House for a mere seven months. The entire GOP emphasis in those seven months—backed by the tea party—has been on reversing the historic spending damage of Mr. Obama's first two years.  (WSJ, 8/8/2011)

It has occurred to us that Liberals are outraged at the Tea Party because......Liberals lost the argument!  All the talk about how the Tea Party "held the country hostage" is merely a smokescreen for their furor at having lost the debate.  Meanwhile President Obama's speech today on the S&P downgrade talked about the need to create jobs for construction workers.  It was absolutely bizarre.  For a moment, we almost thought he was going to say "shovel-ready." 

Three Part Harmony
The liberal agenda came in three parts: First, raise taxes on high-income Americans to limit domestic spending cuts; second, protect the social “safety net,” especially Social Security and Medicare; and finally, cut defense spending to spare (again) domestic programs.

Liberals got two of three. They failed on taxes, the Republicans’ litmus test. But they prevailed elsewhere. Social Security, Medicare and most benefits (food stamps, Medicaid) for the poor, regardless of age, were put off-limits. (Robert Samuelson, Washington Post, 8/7/2011)

Samuelson's take - on the other hand - is that Liberals won.  Whether or not you believe that, one thing is abundantly clear.  That is the utter gutlessness of Democrats in refusing to acknowledge the long-term unsustainability of entitlement spending. They would turn America into a welfare state if left unchecked.  

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Side Show

The Game Begins
A source in Texas passed The Huffington Post Perry's transcripts from his years at Texas A&M University. The future politician did not distinguish himself much in the classroom. While he later became a student leader, he had to get out of academic probation to do so. He rarely earned anything above a C in his courses -- earning a C in U.S. History, a D in Shakespeare, and a D in the principles of economics. Perry got a C in gym. (Huffington Post, 8/5/2011)

Time then for the vetting of the presidential candidates by the state-controlled media.  Here is how it goes.  Republican accomplishments are overlooked.  (What?  You didn't know that George Bush had an MBA from Harvard?)  But lies about Republicans get full coverage.  (George Bush...didn't he skip out on his Air National Guard service two weeks early?  And wasn't there a DUI in there somewhere?)  College transcripts and college pranks by Republicans are front page news.  But no one knows that Al Gore reportedly spent his college years in a cannabis haze.  And how many stories are written about Obama's shady real estate deal with a convicted felon?  And what about his admitted use of cocaine and marijuana?  Oh, who cares!  The important thing is that we know that Texas Governor Perry got a C in gym.

Got the Fever
Since that meeting, several lawmakers have publicly questioned whether the ratings agencies have the competence to evaluate the country’s finances, and whether it was appropriate for them to be so deeply involved in discussions of fiscal politics. The criticism reached a fevered pitch after S.& P. announced Friday night that it was downgrading America’s credit rating, a decision that thrust the ratings agencies to the center of the debate over the government’s budget, and prompted renewed scrutiny of an industry that has been harshly criticized since the financial crisis. (NYT, 8/7/2011)

Let's role play this.  During President Bush's term the credit rating of the U.S. is downgraded.  The state-controlled media has a field deal.  This devastating never-before event is all W's fault! But when it happens under the Obama reign, the story is that the rating agencies are incompetent.

Someone Like Him
Over all, the message will be of Mr. Obama as “someone who kept the economy from falling into a depression, who is fighting for the middle class every day and understands where the economy needs to be not just next month and next year, but for the long term so that we can compete with China and India for the future,” said Dan Pfeiffer, the White House communications director. (NYT, 8/7/2011)

Reason for Republican optimism....Obama's handlers will have him run as the one who protected us from Chinese and Indian competition.  Because that is the real concern of the average American today.

Expiration Date
Letting all of the cuts expire at the end of 2012 would save $3.8 trillion over the next decade. Letting the tax cuts expire for those making more than $250,000 would save $700 billion. (New York Times Editorial, 8/7/2011)

Only Liberals like the New York Times editorial board could describe tax hikes as "savings."

Friday, August 5, 2011

Putting Out The Fire With Gasoline

If we just let all income tax rates revert to what they were during the era that should be called the Clinton Prosperity, a debt problem that now may seem overwhelming suddenly looks quite manageable. (Eugene Robinson, Washington Post, 8/4/2011)

Thanks to Robinson for reminding us again that the problem is "the rich."  If they would simply pay more taxes then there would be no debt problem.  Of course, there would be no more rich, but that is not a concern of Redistributionist Robinson.

Credit rating agency Standard & Poor's says it has downgraded the United States' credit rating for the first time in the history of the ratings. The credit rating agency says that it is cutting the country's top AAA rating by one notch to AA-plus. The credit agency said late Friday that it is making the move because the deficit reduction plan passed by Congress on Tuesday did not go far enough to stabilize the country's debt situation.  A source familiar with the discussions said that the Obama administration believes S&P's analysis contained "deep and fundamental flaws."  (New York Times, 8/5/2011)

This may be then the ultimate legacy of the Obama Presidency.

The Democratic National Committee is seeking to define the opening phase of the 2012 campaign as a debate over leadership, arguing in a memo that the leading GOP presidential candidates are gripped by "ideological intransigence and pandering,” and have ducked difficult issue debates. In a document addressed to Sunday television show producers, DNC communications director Brad Woodhouse writes that the Republican candidates are “failing to lead on the issues,” pointing to the debt ceiling debate as proof.  (, 8/5/2011)

Good luck to the DNC in trying to sell this one.  Anyone who thinks that Obama 'led' on the debt ceiling discussion was simply not paying attention.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

All Down The Line

Republicans Seeking Election Remain Unsure About Embracing Tea Party (New York Times Headline, 8/3/2011)

In a related story, Democrats aren't sure what to do about Bernie Sanders.

Plot Line
“While deficit reduction is part of that agenda, it is not the whole agenda,” a grim-faced Mr. Obama said in the Rose Garden moments after the Senate approved the debt limit deal. “Growing the economy isn’t just about cutting spending.” He later added: “That’s not how we’re going to get past this recession. We’re going to have to do more than that.” (NYT, 8/3/2011)

The country eagerly awaits the rest of Obama's agenda for economic recovery.

Nice Try
Still, heading into an election year, Mr. Obama’s advisers say he will be able to point to his role in the debt negotiations as proof of his ability to be a mature, responsible leader who is able to rise above Washington’s relentlessly partisan fray. (NYT, 8/3/2011)

Quick RedStateVT straw poll: How many thought Obama acted "above the fray" and how many thought he was "out of the loop?"

During the negotiations over raising the debt ceiling, President Obama reportedly warned Republican leaders not to call his bluff by sending him a bill without tax increases. Republicans in Congress ignored this threat and passed a bill that cuts more than a dollar in spending for every dollar it increases the debt limit, without raising taxes. Yesterday, Mr. Obama signed this bill into law. He was, as he said, bluffing. (Paul Ryan, WSJ, 8/3/2011)

Recall that several weeks back Obama sat Congressman Paul Ryan in the front row during one of his "speeches" and promptly insulted him in public.  Well Ryan now gets his revenge.  Quick RedStateVT straw poll: Who do you think would be a better president, Obama or Ryan?

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Who Will Lay The Laurel Wreath?

With a Gun
In his private sessions with House and Senate Democrats, Biden reportedly likened dealing with the Republicans to negotiating with terrorists and said GOP leaders had “put guns to their heads.” (Dana Milbank, Washington Post, 8/2/2011)

More Democrat civility, this time courtesy of Crazy Joe.

Best of all it's Free!
Private health insurers must now give birth control and other women's health tests for free, the Obama administration said Monday.  Among the benefits to be offered "without cost-sharing"  -- meaning no co-pay, co-insurance or deductibles beginning Jan. 1, 2013 -- are:

-- well-woman visits;
-- screening for gestational diabetes;
-- human papillomavirus (HPV) DNA testing for women 30 years and older;
-- sexually-transmitted infection counseling;
-- human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) screening and counseling;
-- FDA-approved contraception methods and contraceptive counseling;
-- breastfeeding support, supplies, and counseling, including breast pumps; and
-- domestic violence screening and counseling.  
(, 8/2/2011)

A quick primer on "free."  The government mandates that these services be provided "free."  Because doctors and insurance companies do not work for nothing, they raise fees for other services and premiums to cover the cost of the "free" services.  The increased costs get shared by all to pay for "free."  That is how "free" works.

Monday, August 1, 2011

The Wall On Which The Prophets Wrote

Rally Time
At the same time, Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the former speaker and current Democratic leader, was noncommittal about the plan, suggesting that Democrats might not rally behind it. (NYT, 8/1/2011)

If Obama has lost Pelosi, there is no hope left for him.

Worst of Times
The worst thing you can do in these circumstances is slash government spending, since that will depress the economy even further. Pay no attention to those who invoke the confidence fairy, claiming that tough action on the budget will reassure businesses and consumers, leading them to spend more. It doesn’t work that way, a fact confirmed by many studies of the historical record. (Paul Krugman, NYT, 8/1/2011)

'Single Note' Krugman keeps at it.  Let's see how the markets view the confidence thing....

European and Asian financial markets heaved a sigh of relief Monday over the last-minute agreement in Washington to raise the U.S. debt limit, shrugging off for now the lingering concerns about longer-term global growth prospects and the debt crisis in the euro-area.  Stock markets rallied across the region on news that U.S. policy makers had reached the framework for a budget deal that would clear the way for an increase in Washington’s borrowing limit and could help avert a default... The Euro Stoxx Europe 600 Index rose 0.7 percent in London by Monday afternoon and the FTSE-100 added 1.4 percent. The benchmark Standard & Poor’s 500 futures contract rallied 1 percent, setting the tone for a stronger opening on Wall Street. (NYT, 8/1/2011)