Monday, December 31, 2012


Scar Face
Mr. Biden, who owns two shotguns, brings decades of experience and plenty of scar tissue from past battles with the National Rifle Association to frame recommendations that Mr. Obama wants ready by next month. (NYT, 12/29/2012)

Democrats own guns? Why don't we hear more about them?

He said that he had paid $192 million in taxes over 45 years and complained that the state this year took 85 percent of his income. (NYT, 12/29/2012)

Loving Gerard Depardieu's battles with the French socialists. Kudos to him for calling them out. He makes a point that RedStateVT made many times when socialists in the U.S. (the Democrat party) were harassing Mitt Romney. Namely, never mind the marginal rate for a moment. What is the absolute value of taxes paid? In Depardieu's case, he has an 'absolute' right to ask when is enough enough.

Tick Tock
“This is one of the lowest points of the U.S. Senate,” Senator Barbara A. Mikulski, Democrat of Maryland, remarked as she ticked off what she said were other nadirs in a long Senate career, including the impeachment of President Bill Clinton. “This is what we’re doing to ourselves.” (NYT, 12/30/2012)

We disagree with Mikulski, but only on the timing. Clinton's impeachment was not the nadir. It was when Clinton lied to the American people...which led to his impeachment. 

Dirty Harry
On the Senate side, Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader, took to the floor at midday to proclaim the talks all but finished, shocking even some Democrats. Later he said, well, maybe they were not. Mr. Reid said he had made a counteroffer to the most recent one offered by his Republican counterpart, Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky. Then his aides said he had been sort of joking. (NYT, 12/30/2012)

When the times get tough, the Senate majority leader gets...stupid.

...the attack also raised new questions about the safeguards in a patchwork private and public mental health system that is supposed to allow mentally ill people to live as freely as possible in the community while protecting them and the public. (NYT, 12/30/2012)

The case of a mentally ill woman who pushed an innocent bystander to death on the NYC subway reminds us again of the Liberal policy of deinstitutionalizing the insane: "They're not insane, they're just differently abled."

Teeter Totter
AS the nation teeters at the edge of fiscal chaos, observers are reaching the conclusion that the American system of government is broken. But almost no one blames the culprit: our insistence on obedience to the Constitution, with all its archaic, idiosyncratic and downright evil provisions. (Louis Michael Seidman, NYT, 12/30/2012)

A Georgetown University constitutional law professor comes up with a really clever idea: Let's ignore the U.S. Constitution! What a wonderfully Liberal idea. Of course, Seidman does not want to ignore all of the Constitution....

This is not to say that we should disobey all constitutional commands. Freedom of speech and religion, equal protection of the laws and protections against governmental deprivation of life, liberty or property are important, whether or not they are in the Constitution. We should continue to follow those requirements out of respect, not obligation.

Nor should we have a debate about, for instance, how long the president’s term should last or whether Congress should consist of two houses. Some matters are better left settled, even if not in exactly the way we favor. Nor, finally, should we have an all-powerful president free to do whatever he wants. Even without constitutional fealty, the president would still be checked by Congress and by the states. There is even something to be said for an elite body like the Supreme Court with the power to impose its views of political morality on the country. (Louis Michael Seidman, NYT, 12/30/2012)

...he only recommends that we ignore the parts that he does not like. Perhaps his students should ignore the parts of Seidman's class that they do not like.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

RedStateVT Presents The Worst of 2012

Joe Biden, Harry Reid and Candy CrowleyThe three worst offenders in the genre “Let’s defame Mitt Romney and/or throw the election to Barack Obama.” We say it again: Joe Biden’s performance in the debate with Paul Ryan was the single most disgraceful public performance by a national politician that we have ever seen. Period. Harry Reid’s allegation that Mitt Romney paid no taxes for ten years (for which he offered no proof, only hearsay) was almost equally despicable. And, of course, Crowley’s bail-out of Obama on Benghazi was the low point of modern political journalism. Shame on them all.

ObamacareFirst showing up on our list in 2010, Obamacare is back as we now get to know it more intimately and its adoption becomes inevitable (see Chief Justice John Roberts).  It gets worse with time. The LTC portion gets canned because it is financially impossible, new waivers for Obama friendlies, more taxes on individuals come to light, the medical device tax suddenly gets noticed, mass confusion over the exchanges, and on and on.  All this because of the poor unfortunate souls without insurance. Yes, the very same individuals who were too lazy and/or selfish to look in the yellow pages under “Insurance – Health insurance providers” to purchase coverage on their own. Well in due course they can look up providers on the computer because of the wondrous state insurance exchanges. (What makes us think they might? Oh, maybe – just maybe – because of the mandate. Thanks, Justice Roberts!) These are also the same people who wait to get sick before considering that they may need insurance. Thereby ending up with a “pre-existing condition” which made them ineligible to buy insurance. Such problem which Obamacare is going to solve. This is progress.

Elizabeth Warren - If there was a less appealing candidate for political office this year, we did not see him/her. Even the nutty "rape" Republicans could not match Warren for the sheer volume of ineptitude which included fake ancestral roots (minority, of course), plagiarism, disparagement of business after having served as an insurance company lawyer, doubts about whether she even had a valid law license, claims to be the intellectual godmother of the horrible Occupy movement, etc. Of course the voters of Massachusetts elected her. The only consolation was watching her first press conference as she first stood mute, then had to be prodded by Deval Patrick to respond and then fumbled the answers. Expect to see her as a Dem VP candidate in the future.  

HollywoodThe beautiful 1%ers fall in behind Obama, no surprise. It’s groupthink for sure in la la land. They throw their moral weight (such as it is) behind the Occupy movement then use every legal maneuver they can to reduce their own taxes. They love the working man in America, but film their “projects” in Canada. They eschew the violence of guns in America all the while indoctrinating youth in how to become the next serial killer. Meanwhile they live in gated communities protected by armed guards. Ben Affleck has decided not to run for the Senate from Massachusetts. What a loss for the country.

Chief Justice John RobertsConspiracy theorists on the Right claim that the fix was in. We don’t know, we may never know. Was Roberts really trying to give the Court some wiggle room for the cases to follow? Why would he support a decision that he clearly does not support? Did he buckle under to some unidentified pressure from the White House? More questions than answers. He dishonored himself and the Supreme Court and sold out the country. Shame on him.

Unions (or maybe it’s just union bosses)We love the hard-working union members…blah blah blah. Maybe it is union bosses who encourage members to do such horrible things. Like the teachers who brought children to the capitol rotunda to protest in Wisconsin. Or like the members who resorted to violence in Michigan, destroying property and physically threatening anyone who disagreed with them. You have to wonder when even Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel takes issue with the city’s teachers union…

The KardashiansPerennial offenders. As we have said in the past, much that is wrong with America wrapped up in one weekly show… televised daily.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Without Hindrance

A RedStateVT Snap Poll
Who will be blamed if an agreement on the fiscal cliff is not reached?
a) Republicans
b) Not Democrats
c) All Republicans but no Democrats
d) All of the above

In several states, the gun companies have enlisted unions that represent gun workers, mindful that Democratic lawmakers who might otherwise back gun control also have close ties to labor.

In Connecticut, the United Automobile workers, which represents Colt workers, has testified against restrictions (NYT, 12/23/2012)

One of our pet peeves is the media tactic of branding all Republicans or all Democrats with a single stroke on issues. Because the media is overwhelmingly Liberal, they lead their audience to believe that all Democrats are pro-gun control, pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage, etc. Of course the truth is more nuanced, but we do not often get that story. It's too bad really because we would get a much more intelligent debate. What? There are are Dems who are pro-life? Let's hear what they have to say!

Opponents argue that the money spent so far, about $14.7 billion, is enough, and that a renewal could cost about $12.2 billion were it to last for 10 years. They also complain that the credit allows wind machines to be profitable even when there is a surplus of electricity and the market price for it falls to zero.

The tax credit could be equal to one-sixth to one-half of the revenue from the wind turbine, depending on electricity prices in the area of the generator.

Wind advocates say that the wind production tax credit did not cost the taxpayers any money, because it stimulated economic activity, in the form of manufacturing and construction, that was taxed at the federal, state and local levels. (NYT, 12/27/2012)

We certainly hear enough about tax breaks for oil companies. You mean to say that there are tax breaks for wind companies as well? Who would have guessed? Not to worry though because wind companies create jobs and generate tax revenue. Do oil companies likewise create jobs and generate tax revenue? Further research is necessary to answer that question.

Heading For The Exits
Five years after Al Gore joined the prestigious venture-capital firm Kleiner Perkins to back environmentally correct companies, the collaboration has yielded few successful exits for Mr. Gore and his partners, along with some spectacular disasters.

This week brought further embarrassment for a Kleiner-backed and taxpayer-subsidized project called Fisker Automotive. In an interview with Delaware's News Journal, the head of the state's economic development office, Alan Levin, discussed the $21.5 million that was provided by the state in return for a Fisker promise to build green cars there. "All we want are the jobs or our money back," Mr. Levin told the newspaper.

Fisker, an electric-car maker, is currently not making any cars due to various design and production problems. Last year the Department of Energy stopped lending money to Fisker after the company missed development deadlines, but federal taxpayers were already on the hook for more than $190 million. (NYT, 12/27/2012)

We see it as poetic justice if green millionaire Gore feels some pain here. Meanwhile, good on Levin for summing it all up rather, well...poetically. Also note that when they say "federal taxpayers" that means everyone. We want our money back too.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Revealing Science

Liberal Logic
“Let’s widen the argument out a little bit,” Mr. Gregory said. “So here is a magazine for ammunition that carries 30 bullets. Now isn’t it possible that if we got rid of these, if we replaced them and said, ‘Well, you could only have a magazine that carries 5 bullets or 10 bullets,’ isn’t it just possible that we can reduce the carnage in a situation like Newtown?” (NYT, 12/26/2012)

We have many Liberal friends and know them to be highly educated, articulate and successful. So what is it about media Liberals? Why do they come across as fools unable to put together an argument that goes from A to C? Gregory wants to outlaw 30 bullet capacity magazines (while allowing the 5 or 10 capacity options) to "reduce the carnage." Where to begin? Well Lanza - even with his mental problems - would likely have then carried three 10 capacity magazines. (Note to Gregory: the math works out the same.) In the absence of an armed school guard he would have had plenty of time to reload and continue killing.

The good news is that Gregory may be under investigation for illegally possessing and displaying the 30 bullet version on this show.

Russian Reset
President Vladimir V. Putin said Thursday that he would sign into a law a ban on adoptions of Russian children by American citizens, retaliating against an American law that punishes Russians accused of violating human rights and dealing a potentially grave setback to bilateral relations. (NYT, 12/27/2012)

One of our biggest fears about Obama has been the suspicion that he is a rube when it comes to negotiating foreign policy. With his public pronouncements of his willingness to "reset" America's positions, his opening bid immediately shows his hand to the other side. Who then bank the free giveaway. After stiffing Poland on a promised missile defense treaty Obama got exactly nothing in return. He then tells the Russians on an open microphone that he will have "more flexibility" after the election. God help us. So far the whole reset thing is not exactly working out, is it?

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Consider This

Still, we were stunned by Mr. LaPierre’s mendacious, delusional, almost deranged rant. (NYT editorial, 12/21/2012)

The New York Times does not like what NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre said yesterday. Here is some of what he said:

In a race to the bottom, media conglomerates compete with one another to shock, violate and offend every standard of civilized society by bringing an ever-more-toxic mix of reckless behavior and criminal cruelty into our homes — every minute of every day of every month of every year.A child growing up in America witnesses 16,000 murders and 200,000 acts of violence by the time he or she reaches the ripe old age of 18. And throughout it all, too many in our national media … their corporate owners … and their stockholders … act as silent enablers, if not complicit co-conspirators. Rather than face their own moral failings, the media demonize lawful gun owners, amplify their cries for more laws and fill the national debate with misinformation and dishonest thinking that only delay meaningful action and all but guarantee that the next atrocity is only a news cycle away. (Wayne LaPierre, CEO of the NRA, quoted on, 12/20/2012)

Well, it doesn't exactly sound delusional to us, but perhaps delusion is in the eye of the beholder. Obviously the New York Times wants to keep the focus on guns and not the cultural rot that LaPierre (and RedStateVT) have emphasized. The Times is probably also annoyed at LaPierre's jabs at "media conglomerates." Anyway, we quickly went through the Times and here is what we found in a review of a book, a movie and a video game:

“We are seeing a transitional generation,” concludes Ms. (author Abbi) Glines, who started by publishing young-adult fiction and has slowly been adding steamier material as she has seen it drive up sales of her books. “They want a good narrative with the emotional intensity of teenagers, but they want sex, too.” (NYT, 12/21/2012)

“Jack Reacher” brings its hero to Pittsburgh, where a sniper has just shot down five innocent people, including a nanny accompanying a small child, in broad daylight. (NYT, 12/20/2012)

The game encourages players to resist employing the many creative methods of killing that it offers. You’re rewarded for the indirect approach: sneaking around corners, over roofs and through tunnels, and eavesdropping on characters who provide clues to your target’s whereabouts. But there’s nothing to stop you from making Corvo charge right through the front door and kill everyone in his path. There are many ways to accomplish each mission. Corvo can assassinate his enemies — or bystanders — with his blade, or he can choke them into unconsciousness with his hands. (NYT, 10/5/2012)

Tell us again, who is delusional?

And one more thing, Liberals quickly scoff at the idea of armed guards in schools while forgetting the following:

The idea of arming school security officers is not altogether new. Districts in cities including Albuquerque, Baltimore, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami and St. Louis have armed officers in schools, either through relationships with local police departments or by training and recruiting their own staff members. (NYT, 12/21/2012)

In closing, we will turn to Charles Krauthammer (as we often do) for the wrap-up:

Every mass shooting has three elements: the killer, the weapon and the cultural climate. As soon as the shooting stops, partisans immediately pick their preferred root cause with corresponding pet panacea. Names are hurled, scapegoats paraded, prejudices vented. The argument goes nowhere.
Unless you are prepared to confiscate all existing firearms, disarm the citizenry and repeal the Second Amendment, it’s almost impossible to craft a law that will be effective.
We live in an entertainment culture soaked in graphic, often sadistic, violence. Older folks find themselves stunned by what a desensitized youth finds routine, often amusing. It’s not just movies. Young men sit for hours pulling video-game triggers, mowing down human beings en masse without pain or consequence. And we profess shock when a small cadre of unstable, deeply deranged, dangerously isolated young men go out and enact the overlearned narrative. (Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post, 12/20/2012)

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Prison Moons

Hollywood’s power lunches have been filled in recent days with conversations about hypocrisy, according to people in the industry: Many of those who are liberal leaning and support gun control also make their livings selling violent images.

There is also a creeping dread in Hollywood that the industry will be drawn into a governmental crackdown on violent imagery. President Obama, in an appearance Wednesday in which he pledged to pursue more restrictive gun-control measures, also suggested that the country needed to look more closely “at a culture that all too often glorifies guns and violence.” (NYT, 12/19/2012)

Hollywood should feel dread...and guilt. Good for Obama for putting Hollywood's Liberals on notice. Let's hope he follows through.

But then there is this....

But even in a period of reflection, there were already pockets of people in Hollywood pushing back on Tuesday — executives who maintain that, while tragic, the Newtown massacre had no connection with entertainment. (NYT, 12/19/2012)

So, tell us again. It's the NRA that is in denial?

With A Flourish
The auto industry has not only survived but it is flourishing. Car sales, which had sunk as low as 10.4 million in 2009, are now running at an annual rate of more than 15 million. As many as 250,000 new workers have been added. Disastrous past industry practices – from bloated inventories to excessive sales incentives – have been curbed. (Steven Rattner, NYT, 12/19/2012)

Just to review, "Obama Car Czar" Rattner is a private equity guy (we thought private equity guys were evil!) who paid $10 million in "restitution" for alleged improprieties involving a New York State public pension fund. Now he writes extolling the wonderful thing that the auto bailout turned out to be. What with the low inventories and reduced sales incentives and everything. But didn't we just read something about this a mere six days ago? Of course we did! 

G.M. ended November with about a 140-day inventory of Silverados, which is about double the industry standard of 60 to 70 days of supply. To clear out the backlog, G.M. raised its truck incentives an unspecified amount this month to generate more showroom traffic. (NYT, 12/13/2012)

A pretty strong chart from today’s WSJ piece by Jeff Bennett and Christina Rogers, looking at a new problem for Detroit auto makers: despite healthy sales growth, stockpiles of unsold vehicles are building up to more than twice the size of the industry average. And foreign brands are not having the same problem. (WSJ, 12/5/2012)

Calling the New York Times Fact-Checker!

Vermont's Green Mountain Power sends a notice to customers announcing an increase in the Energy Efficiency Charge (EEC) from $0.00931 to $0.01011 per kWh. Sounds innocuous enough...until we did the math. The increase is 8.6%! This is the thing with taxes and why we fight them. They always go up in such stealthy and seemingly small increments that we tend to overlook them. Until we realize that the government has their hands on our wallet and is shaking it hard. 

What is the EEC? Here is how it is described: "The EEC pays for an organization called Efficiency Vermont to provide energy efficiency services to most of the state....Energy efficiency benefits Vermonters in two ways: first, using less electricity lowers the bills of individuals who take steps to reduce their power; second, and more importantly, when statewide use goes down, it reduces electric utilities' total system costs, which would otherwise be paid by all electric customers through rates."

Only the government (or a public utility) could write something like this, both idiotic and incomprehensible at the same time. To the first point, apparently the public is not aware that 'using less electricity lowers their bills.' They just HAVE to get the word out on that! Second, lower overall usage drives down rates for all customers...such savings, we would note, which are reduced by the cost of the EEC paid by these very same customers. Here's a thought - and we are just free-styling here - eliminate the EEC and pass the savings along directly!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Tight Formation

Our Latest on Guns And Society
With various proposals beginning to appear on gun control, we thought it might be useful to see how they may play out in the real world. For example, gun control advocates want to limit or eliminate the availability/sale of assault rifles and high capacity ammunition magazines. So, the thinking goes, people like Loughner and Lanza could not use these weapons to kill...what, as many people? Presumably, they could still get access to more conventional weapons, so - and we are straining to be objective on the logic - even though they could still shoot people in a crowded school or theater, the carnage would not be as bad. Is that the argument? Would Newtown be less of a tragedy if only five children were killed? Of course not. Which brings us back to the rationality of the gun control argument. Blogger Derecho Washington argues - if he is being serious - for Federal buybacks of ALL guns. It is a completely unrealistic suggestion, but at least is more logical than a partial ban on this or that.

And so we return to our central argument on the issue: namely, American culture. Madmen will continue to do great violence if the culture desensitizes them to violence. For the record, we are neither adamantly for nor against the assault weapon/ammunition ban. Ban them if you will, but at the same time ban violent video games, bring pressure on Hollywood to tone down the violence in movies, identify people at risk for mental illness and hospitalize them if necessary, make divorce and single motherhood the exception, and encourage rather than mock the role of religion in society...for starters.

Unlike the A.I.G. rescue, however, the government’s wind-down of its G.M. bailout is expected to lose money. The Treasury Department’s break-even pricepoint is generally estimated at about $53 a share, following the car maker’s I.P.O. (NYT, 12/19/2012)

Obama's much vaunted GM bailout in which he used our tax dollars to save the jobs of union workers who would vote for him and give him campaign contributions funneled through UAW dues. The Treasury will sell 200 million shares at $27.50 by year-end. Do the math. 

The Rising
Given what we know now, there is almost no way that the feared large temperature rise is going to happen. Mr. Lewis comments: "Taking the IPCC scenario that assumes a doubling of CO2, plus the equivalent of another 30% rise from other greenhouse gases by 2100, we are likely to experience a further rise of no more than 1°C."

A cumulative change of less than 2°C by the end of this century will do no net harm. It will actually do net good—that much the IPCC scientists have already agreed upon in the last IPCC report. Rainfall will increase slightly, growing seasons will lengthen, Greenland's ice cap will melt only very slowly, and so on. (Matt Ridley, WSJ, 12/18/2012)

Addendum (we'd like to see): Reached for comment on these latest findings which contradict their position, Gore and McKibben declared again that climate change is "settled science, because we say so."

The attack in Benghazi and the Obama administration’s explanation of what happened and who was responsible became politically charged issues in the waning weeks of the presidential campaign, and Republicans have continued to demand explanations since then. Susan E. Rice, the United States ambassador to the United Nations, took herself out of consideration for secretary of state after Republican criticism of comments she made in the aftermath of the lethal attack threatened to become a divisive political battle. (NYT, 12/18/2012)

Editor's note (we'd like to see): And by "Obama administration" we mean specifically President Obama and Hillary Clinton.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The Sunlight Brightly Gleams

A Difficult Truth
There is no doubt that Nancy Lanza, mother of the Newtown shooter is a victim - in fact, the first victim - of the massacre perpetrated by her son. Make no mistake, she did not deserve to die. By all accounts she was burdened by and struggled mightily with her youngest child's illness. May she rest in peace. 

Unfortunately, Lanza also made some very very poor decisions that set this tragedy in motion. It is very difficult for us to write the truth here. However, we have to ask why she would use guns and target practice as an activity to bond with and engage a child with obvious mental problems. Why would she have guns accessible to him in the first place? 

As we have said, let's have that national discussion on guns in America. It should include the role of parents as enablers, whether through allowing their kids to be exposed to the violence that Hollywood sends our way or in not locking the gun cabinet.

Shape Shift
Demonstrating rapidly shifting attitudes toward gun control in the aftermath of a massacre in a Connecticut school, many pro-gun Congressional Democrats — including Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader and a longstanding gun rights supporter — signaled an openness Monday to new restrictions on guns. (NYT, 12/17/2012)

In a shocking display of journalism, the New York Times admits that there exist pro-gun Democrats. What's next? Pro-life Democrats? Anti-gay marriage Democrats? 

Diversify This!
Liberals tend to overemphasize racial diversity, especially in politics, but the diversity lobby was notably missing in action Monday after South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley's announcement that she chose Tim Scott to replace departing Senator Jim DeMint. It is a striking moment nonetheless. A Republican Governor who is the daughter of immigrants from India appointed a Republican who will become the only sitting African-American Senator in the 113th Congress. (WSJ, 12/17/2012)

On Monday, South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley announced that she was appointing U.S. Congressman Tim Scott to the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Jim DeMint. When he is sworn in on January 3, Scott will be the lone African American of either party in the Senate but this historic news didn't seem to interest ABC or CBS as neither mentioned the news that night. (, 12/18/2012)

Question: How long can Liberals and their media sponsors ignore minority Republicans?
Answer: As long as it takes. 

Peace Of Work
Rep. Dennis Kucinich, (D-Ohio), whose spaceship should be landing any day now to take him back to the planet Zaxxon, called for a federal "Department of Peace" in the aftermath of the Newtown, Connecticut massacre. (, 12/18/2012)

Just for laughs!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Whoever Says

"We cannot turn our back and say that violence in films or anything that we do doesn't have a sort of influence," Foxx said in an interview on Saturday. "It does." (actor Jamie Foxx, quoted on, 12/16/2012)

...they never met Adam, a reclusive youth who had few if any friends and spent most of his time in two adjoining bedrooms in the family home. There he would spend hours on his computer, much of the time devoted to playing violent games. (, 12/16/2012)

See RedStateVT's recent post on the causes of gun violence. So far we have divorce, mental illness and video game violence. 

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sustained a concussion after becoming dehydrated and fainting, and will no longer testify Thursday before the House Foreign Affairs Committee on the deadly attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. Clinton had been suffering from a stomach virus at the time, according to a statement on Saturday from Philippe Reines, deputy assistant secretary of state. She is being monitored by doctors and is recovering at home. She was never hospitalized, Reines said. (, 12/16/2012)

Won't testify? Never hospitalized? The cover-up continues.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Bless The Children

It should come as no surprise that the rate of mass shootings at schools and in other public places is increasing. The surge has nothing to do with guns, which have been widely available in the U.S. for years. Gun control laws have been increasing. Instead, there is a direct correlation between the increase in violence and the gradual degradation of morals, ethics and parenting. We are cultivating mental illness in our society. (Rachel Alexander, Townhall, 12/15/2012)

Excellent article that we would have liked to write. By all means, let's have a national discussion on gun control. Such discussion which should also include an examination of the role of the degradation of American culture in these horrific events. Violent video games, violence in movies, decriminalization of marijuana, abortion on demand, decline (and even mockery) of religion, ubiquitous pornography, deinstitutionalization of the mentally ill, quick and easy divorce, ready acceptance of illegitimacy, glorification of single parenthood, etc. What is clear is that all of these things are more prevalent today than they were twenty years ago, even as gun control laws have gotten more stringent. So if there are more of these mass shootings now notwithstanding tighter gun laws, doesn't it make sense to ask if culture plays a role? It is also worth noting that many of the things we list are items that evolve from or fit squarely with the Liberal agenda. Hollywood loves to shout that the NRA has blood on its hands, all the while feeding our children a steady diet of violence.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and families of the Newtown violence.

The unions’ frenzy against this freedom is as understandable as their desire to abolish the right of secret ballots in unionization elections: Freedom is not the unions’ friend. After Colorado required public-employees unions in 2001 to have annual votes reauthorizing the collection of dues, membership in the Colorado Association of Public Employees declined 70 percent. After Indiana’s government stopped in 2005 collecting dues from unionized public employees, the number of dues-paying members plummeted 90 percent. In Utah, automatic dues deductions for political activities were ended in 2001; made voluntary, payments from teachers declined 90 percent. After a similar measure in Washington state in 1992, the percentage of teachers making contributions fell from 82 to 11. The Democratic Party’s desperate opposition to the liberation of workers from compulsory membership in unions is because unions are conveyor belts moving coerced dues money into the party. (George Will, Washington Post, 12/14/2012)

So in Colorado 70%, in Indiana 90%, in Utah 90%, and Washington 71%; representing the decline in union dues payers. Unions have a problem - a big problem - not with Republican politicians, but with their own members.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Publish Or Perish

Two For You
So Republicans ran Susan Rice out of town...or at least the State Department because she is black. To believe this you have to first ignore both Colin Powell and Condi Rice. Then you have to say that - notwithstanding Powell and Rice - Republicans were motivated by racism and NOT Rice's incompetence/poor job performance. Then you have to say that John McCain (one of Rice's harshest critics) is a racist. The same John McCain who adopted a dark-skinned daughter from Bangladesh  Only Liberals could say "racism" here. It's certainly easier than admitting that a black female did a poor job. 

A guest on talk radio today (Dennis Miller show) defending gay marriage made the following comment (paraphrasing): 'opponents of gay marriage are evangelicals who want to impose their views on society.' Which struck us as a bit off. Since the dawn of civilized society, there has been no gay marriage. So evangelicals (and other opponents of gay marriage) do not want to impose their views, they only want the perpetuation of the status quo. Proponents of gay marriage are the ones, in fact, who want to impose their views on society. By all means, let's have a debate on the topic. But let's also tell the truth about who wants what. 

The Susan Rice story -- and the politics surrounding it -- also prompts this question for our brethren in the news media: Why did the unclassified talking points that Rice read back in September overshadow everything else about the attack in Benghazi? (, 12/14/2012)

Answer: Because you at NBC News and your "brethren in the news media" chose not to report the full Benghazi story so as not to damage the president's re-election. Only Liberals could consciously ignore a story and then ask why everyone ignored the story. Oh, and by the way, Fox News did NOT ignore the story. Have you folks over at NBC heard about Fox?

Forks And Knives
A knife-wielding man injured 22 children and one adult outside a primary school in central China as students were arriving for classes Friday, police said, the latest in a series of periodic rampage attacks at Chinese schools and kindergartens. (NYT, 12/14/2012)

Outlaw knives?

Slights is more than slightly ironic that Democrats, the fiercely pro-choice party, reserve free choice for aborting a fetus while denying it for such matters as choosing your child’s school or joining a union. (Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post, 12/13/2012)


So So
President Barack Obama on Thursday brushed aside concerns that he favors socialism, saying in an interview with Univision that his policies are so mainstream that he would have been considered a moderate Republican in the 1980s. (, 12/14/2012)

Of course, we remember very clearly the incessant demands from 1980s Republicans that we "spread the wealth around."

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Divining Signs

The income stagnation that has hit the middle class in the last decade is complicating the Democrats’ position in the fiscal talks, making it more difficult for them to advocate across-the-board tax increases if a deal falls through.

Many Democrats have derided the expiring tax cuts as irresponsible since President George W. Bush signed them a decade ago. Yet the party is united in pushing to make the vast majority of them permanent, even though President Obama could ensure their expiration at year’s end with a simple veto....

“It’s perfectly reasonable for the White House to begin collecting more revenue from folks who have done by far the best in pretax terms,” said Jared Bernstein of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a former economist for Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. “But ultimately we can’t raise the revenue we need only on the top 2 percent.” (NYT, 12/12/2012)

It is no longer a secret: Democrats want tax increases ON EVERYONE. In a perfect world, they would start with the rich and then, when it became obvious that they needed more, they would begin making the case that the middle class should kick in more "for the good of the country." Funny, we do not recall them running for office on that month ago.

In A Name
It actually is the Bush-Obama rates. Two years ago, when the economy was, as now, sputtering along barely above stall speed, Obama — joined by 43 Senate and 139 House Democrats — extended the rates for two years because the economy was too weak to absorb large tax increases. (George Will, Washington Post, 12/12/2012)

Well, that's a good point. Why don't Obama and his allies in the media call them "the Obama tax cuts?"

Not Normal
Now comes Michigan’s new right-to-work law, passed Tuesday in a travesty of normal democratic deliberation. This effort to weaken unions would be problematic in any event. The moral case for unions is that they give bargaining strength to workers who would have far less capacity to improve their wages and benefits negotiating as individuals. Further gutting unions is the last thing we need to do at a time when the income gap is growing. (E.J. Dionne Jr., Washington Post, 12/12/2012)

Two points. "Travesty of normal democratic deliberations?" Isn't that how Dionne's friends Reid and Pelosi passed Obamacare, or are we remembering that wrong? "Gutting unions?" Eliminating the forced collection of union dues, that's going to destroy unions? As others have said, if the unions are providing such enormous benefits for their members, said members will gladly pay their dues. Democrats and union bosses prefer the status quo: mandatory confiscation.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

The Grinding Wheel

As President Obama considers how quickly to withdraw the remaining 68,000 American troops in Afghanistan and turn over the war to Afghan security forces, a bleak new Pentagon report has found that only one of the Afghan National Army’s 23 brigades is able to operate independently without air or other military support from the United States and NATO partners. (NYT, 12/10/2012)

It is worth another reminder here that Afghanistan is demonstrably Obama's war. As an Ann Coulter column some time back reminded us, Bush had largely turned away from Afghanistan (and toward Iraq) after the initial rout of the Taliban and some additional clean-up. We doubt that Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld held any illusions that Afghanistan would never be a problem again. Rather it is likely that they recognized that given its history, it was unconquerable and ungovernable and that from time-to-time the U.S. would have to return to kill the cockroaches which had returned. Time to move on.

Obama, by contrast, promoted Afghanistan as the "war of necessity" probably to show his strong-on-national security bona fides. He owns it and he owns the following:

More than 2,000 American service members have died in the war, which has cost the United States more than $500 billion since 2001. More than 1,200 American service members have died in Afghanistan from the beginning of 2010 to the present, which is roughly the period of the surge. (NYT, 12/10/2012)

Republicans said they intended to cast final votes as early as Tuesday on legislation abruptly announced last week that would bar workers from being required to pay union fees as a condition of employment, even as thousands of union members planned to protest at the state Capitol and as President Obama, visiting a truck factory outside Detroit, denounced the notion. (NYT, 12/10/2012)

Are unions being outlawed? No. Is collective bargaining being outlawed? No. Are unions being forced to give back wages or benefits? No. So what is all the fuss in Michigan about? 

Workers cannot be forced to pay union dues. That's it. That's all. 

Obviously unions view this as an existential threat, knowing as they do that when right-to-work has been passed in other states, lots of workers don't pay. 

So in a free society, a segment of the population does not believe that they are getting value for their purchase and does not want to be forced to pay. Isn't this the way things are supposed to work?

...the best case for right to work is moral: the right of an individual to choose. Union chiefs want to coerce workers to join and pay dues that they then funnel to politicians who protect union power. Right to work breaks this cycle of government-aided monopoly union power for the larger economic good. (WSJ, 12/10/2012)

President Obama says the middle class benefits mightily from the Bush tax cuts and cannot afford to see them expire. Which provokes a question: Where has our press corps been these past 10 years?  For most of that time, Democrats have been hollering that the only people to benefit from the Bush tax cuts were Bill Gates, Wall Street bankers, and the guy with the top hat and monocle who appears on our Monopoly sets. Now the same press that accepted, approved and amplified the "Bush tax cuts for the wealthy" trope leaves unchallenged a president who today tells us, oh, by the way, those Bush tax cuts are vital for America's middle class—and claims that the opposition to middle-class tax cuts proposed and put into law mainly by Republicans comes from . . . Republicans. (William McGurn, WSJ, 12/10/2012)

McGurn knows the answer to his rhetorical question. Journalism is dead. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Trampling Out The Vintage

Tax Time
In the Affordable Care Act, the new tax on investment income is called an “unearned income Medicare contribution.” However, the law does not provide for the money to be deposited in a specific trust fund. It is added to the government’s general tax revenues and can be used for education, law enforcement, farm subsidies or other purposes. (NYT, 12/8/2012)

An article worth reading to learn about the taxes already coming (never mind the fiscal cliff) as a result of Obamacare. Fox News told you about these while the rest of the media ignored them. With Obama safely re-elected, the Times is now free to report the facts. Also interesting is that "the affluent" are now defined not as the top 2%, but as the top 20%! Shortly, in order to up the pot, Obama and the Dems will define the rich as the top 53%.... which gets us exactly to the 53-47 split that Mitt Romney spoke about. Ooops.

Sign O' The Times
Yet amid the celebration, there were signs of concern over how the Supreme Court might rule. The fact that the Supreme Court is hearing the cases hardly means it is about to ratify same-sex marriage. As supporters and opponents said in interviews, the court might well use these cases to find that there is no constitutional protection for same-sex marriage. (NYT, 12/8/2012)

RedStateVT prediction: The Supreme Court will rule that same-sex marriage is unconstitutional in a 5-4 decision. However, Justice Roberts will side with the minority in a "let's make an exception" extra-judicial ruling. Remind us again: Who signed the Defense of Marriage Act? Oh, of course, it was Bill Clinton.

The annual United Nations climate change negotiations concluded here late Saturday after the customary all-night negotiating session and recriminations over who must bear the costs and burdens of a warming planet.

Delegates from more than 190 nations agreed to extend the increasingly ineffective Kyoto Protocol a few years and to commit to more ambitious — but unspecified — actions to reduce emissions of climate-altering gases.

Wealthy nations put off for a year resolution of the dispute over providing billions of dollars in aid to countries most heavily affected by climate change. Industrial nations have pledged to secure $100 billion a year by 2020 in public and private financing to help poor countries cope with climate change, but have been vague about what they plan to do before then. (NYT, 12/8/2012)

Forget saving the planet. The number one goal of the climate change crowd is income redistribution. Remind us again: What was the U.S. Senate vote on the Kyoto Protocol? Oh, that's right, it was 95-0 against.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Short Handed

He (Obama) pretends that Boehner’s offer to raise revenue by eliminating deductions rather than by raising rates is fiscally impossible.

But on July 22, 2011, Obama had said that “$1.2 trillion in additional revenues . . . could be accomplished without hiking tax rates, but could simply be accomplished by eliminating loopholes, eliminating some deductions and engaging in a tax reform process.” Which is exactly what the Republicans are offering today.

You’ve heard of situational ethics. This is situational mathematics. (Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post, 12/6/2012)

The late Tim Russert was famous for asking politicians their views on an issue and then immediately displaying quotes wherein they had espoused the opposite position. Sadly for the country today it is not so in the press today when it comes to Obama. Can you imagine for even one second George Stephanopoulos or Brian Williams or Andrea Mitchell or Piers Morgan saying to Obama: "But Mr. President, on July 22, 2011, here is what you said about eliminating deductions. So are you changing your position on deductions and are Republicans right to be frustrated?"  Journalism is dead. 

But as this column has hitherto noted, the cliff’s consequences — huge tax increases and defense cuts — are progressivism’s agenda. And Obama needs to restock the pantry where he stores his excuses for his economic policy failures. The tax increases would augment his policy of enlarging government’s control of the nation’s economic output, and he could henceforth blame continuing economic anemia on Republicans who supposedly should have averted what progressives desire. (George Will, Washington Post, 12/5/2012)

Light bulb moment for us, thanks to Will. Obama WANTS to go off the cliff. It gets allows him to eviscerate the military and raise taxes on EVERYONE. And to blame it all on Republicans.

The Supreme Court announced Friday it will for the first time hear arguments about same-sex marriage, with a decision on one of America's most politically divisive social issues likely this summer. (Washington Post, 12/7/2012)

Liberals must be overjoyed at the prospect of their new favorite justice, John Roberts, throwing the gay marriage decision their way. 

In Dreams
Some law enforcement officials, alarmed at the prospect that marijuana users in both states could get used to flouting federal law openly, are said to be pushing for a stern response. But such a response would raise political complications for President Obama because marijuana legalization is popular among liberal Democrats who just turned out to re-elect him.

“It’s a sticky wicket for Obama,” said Bruce Buchanan, a political science professor at the University of Texas at Austin, saying any aggressive move on such a high-profile question would be seen as “a slap in the face to his base right after they've just handed him a chance to realize his presidential dreams.” (NYT, 12/6/2012)

It's also a "sticky wicket" for Obama (aka "the interceptor") because of his reputation in his younger days as a serious stoner. We are just waiting for someone at NORML to raise this awkward issue. But Mr. President, when you were a teenager in Hawaii isn't it true that.....?

Thursday, December 6, 2012

In Tune

With the election results ensuring another four years with an empowered adversary in the White House, and a growing docket of polls that show voters ready to blame Republicans for a failure to avert the so-called fiscal cliff, many House Republicans appear to view Mr. Boehner with the same sort of respect that adult children award their parents for the sage counsel they ignored in their younger days. (NYT, 12/5/2012)

Forget the backhanded compliment to Boehner above, the relevant phrase is "ready to blame Republicans." The Liberal media is already baking this in to the story line weeks before we know what happens.

Competition among states and cities to lure businesses in hopes of creating jobs is not new, but it has become more fierce in recent years. An investigation by The Times found that state and local governments are giving out $80 billion a year in tax breaks and other subsidies in a foolhardy, shortsighted race to attract companies. That money could go a long way to improving education, transportation and other public services that would have a far better shot at promoting real economic growth. (NYT editorial, 12/5/2012)

The Times claims that tax incentives to lure business do not make economic sense for states. Perhaps they don't, but the alternative presented by the Times is the old Liberal standby: more money to education and the public sector. How about a Times investigation into the economics of that approach? Given labyrinthine rules that prevent accountability and efficiency in the public sector, our guess is that such an investment might not make economic sense either.

Here's another idea for a Times investigative piece: job creation in right-to-work states.

The inability of this Congress and this president to compromise on anything, now or at any time in the past four years, is itself a problem worthy of some thought.

Here's one thought: The main reason there isn't, and may never be, a solution on the fiscal cliff is that Barack Obama doesn't know how to do a political compromise. Where in his career did Barack Obama ever learn the art of the political deal? Nowhere. (Daniel Henninger, WSJ, 12/5/2012)

This is the price we pay for electing a junior senator with little political experience. Who voted "present" rather than leave his footprints on the record. Say what you will about Bush or Clinton or Romney for that matter, but all governed states and in doing so, were forced to learn what Henninger calls "the political deal." 

The Heretic
HOWARD DEAN: The only problem is -- and this is initially going to seem like heresy from a progressive is -- the truth is everybody needs to pay more taxes, not just the rich. And it's a good start. But we're not going to get out of this deficit problem unless we raise taxes across the board, to go back to what Bill Clinton had and his taxes. And if we don't do that, the problem is the pressure is going to be on spending even more. (, 12/6/2012)

It is not just RedStateVT saying it. Liberals are even letting it slip. After the rich, the middle class is being teed up for tax hikes. Because, after all, we just have to keep spending....

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Observable Ways

Bottomed Out
The president restated his bottom line for the negotiations with Congress to avert a fiscal crisis in January: “What I’m going to need, what the country needs, what the business community needs in order to get to where we need to be, is an acknowledgment that folks like me can afford to pay a little bit higher rate.” (NYT, 12/4/2012)

What strikes us time and time again is the failure of Liberals to make an honest intellectual case for their positions and, similarly, to defend these positions when confronted by conservative arguments. Case in point is the never-ending demand by Obama for higher taxes on the rich. Conservatives say the following: 1) many of those defined as 'rich' are small business owners who would scale back their businesses and lay off workers if taxes go up; 2) raising taxes on the rich to the levels that Obama and the Dems want would be rounding error in the effort to balance the budget/pay down the debt, etc. and 3) the wealthy in this country already pay a majority of all taxes collected. 

What do Obama and the Dems offer in return? What is their intellectual rebuttal? There is none. Just calls for "fairness."

The stimulus measures in the White House’s debt proposal stem from President Obama’s long-since-scuttled American Jobs Act proposal, and include a continuation of emergency support for long-term unemployed workers, an extension of the payroll tax cut, billions in infrastructure investment and a mortgage refinancing proposal. (NYT, 12/4/2012)

If this all sounds familiar to you, it should. Devoid of new ideas, Obama recycles from his not-even-yet-completed first term.

What Junior Is Up To
In recent weeks, college students on dozens of campuses have demanded that university endowment funds rid themselves of coal, oil and gas stocks. The students see it as a tactic that could force climate change, barely discussed in the presidential campaign, back onto the national political agenda. (NYT, 12/4/2012)

As a sign of their serious commitment, the students pledged to give up their personal cars and ride public transportation or bicycles instead. Just kidding!

Or how about this?

Realizing that the divestiture of energy stocks from their schools' endowment funds would mean lower investment returns and that these lower returns would translate to increased costs and less financial aid, students pledged to ask their parents to make up the difference by paying higher tuition. Just kidding!

A former adviser, Eric Fehrnstrom, told Rucker that Romney will “be involved in some fashion” in public service. And nobody can begrudge Romney some downtime. But his failure to engage now, at a time when he could have the most clout, reinforces the impression that his candidacy was less about principle and patriotism than about him. (Dana Milbank, Washington Post, 12/4/2012)

So Milbank wants Mitt Romney - who Liberals like Milbank told us was a corrupt and incompetent man - to jump in and help Obama and the country with this pesky fiscal problem. The same Obama who Liberals tell us won both the election and a mandate.  

See, here's the thing about Republicans. They have infinite more grace after losing or retiring. Compare Reagan, Bush I or Bush II with Carter and Clinton. The latter two just will not go away. Usually much to the dismay of their Democrat successors!

We are asked to believe that a multimillionaire African-American woman, who boasts that those who “mess” with her end up badly, is a victim of racism for not being welcomed as a nominee for secretary of state — a position that has not been held by a white male in 15 years — after she went on five television shows the Sunday after the Benghazi attack in an effort to convince Americans of the absurd myth that their ambassador had been killed in the course of a demonstration gone bad, rather than being murdered in a preplanned al-Qaedist hit. (Victor David Hanson,, 12/4/2012)

Great article by Hanson, which paired with a recent piece in the Wall Street Journal, paint a rather unflattering picture of Susan Rice. We'll suggest that the Republican opposition to Rice is also payback to Dems for John Bolton.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Leveling Passion

Rome Burns
The depth of the disagreement played out on the Sunday morning talk shows, even as Mr. Obama went golfing with former President Bill Clinton in a session that White House officials presumed would include trading notes about the fiscal crisis. (NYT, 12/2/2012)

In the midst of a major financial crisis, President George Bush made the unfortunate and inexplicable decision to go golfing fumed MSNBC's Chris Matthews. The Washington Post, Huffington Post, ABC, CBS, CNN and other media likewise expressed shock and disappointment at the president's action using words like "tone-deaf," "unseemly," and "unconscionable." Oh, it was Obama not Bush? Never mind!

Willing And Unable
So a normal negotiation looks strange only because the past two years have been so utterly abnormal, driven by tea party extremism and an irrational hostility to Obama, a fundamentally moderate man who has already shown a willingness to offer more than his share of concessions. (E.J. Dionne Jr., Washington Post, 12/2/2012)

Dionne brings out a chestnut from the Liberal playbook: "Obama is a moderate." The same Obama who said:

"If someone wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can it's just that it will bankrupt them."
"What's wrong with spreading the wealth around?"
"You didn't build that."

Oh, and who favors no limits on abortion, including partial birth abortion.

This is a moderate.

Oracle said on Monday that it would pay more than $800 million in next year's dividends to shareholders later this month, joining a growing number of companies accelerating such payments or declaring special dividends because of the possibility that income tax rates will rise in 2013. (NYT, 12/3/2012)

Capitalism adapts.

As it likewise will once the full brunt of Obamacare hits. Such adaptation which will include companies laying off workers and reducing hours. 

Target Practice
Bob Costas' gun control rant was bad but made worse by one key point -- he lives much of his life with the benefit of armed security. (i.e. men with guns). (, 12/4/2012)

Liberal hypocrisy on gun control is especially laughable. 

Once again, though, violence results in Liberal focus on the weapon and not on the culture. 

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Official Account

At The Pump
Liberals have delighted in the picture of Mitt Romney pumping his own gas several days ago. We are not certain what the source of their joy is...perhaps, it is that the plutocrat who dared challenge Obama is now reduced to a commoner. But then again, if Romney was the feudal baron that they portrayed him to be, wouldn't he have one of his many servants doing the fill-up? So perhaps Liberals and those who voted against him largely as a result of the unending characterizations of Romney by Liberals - now apparently proven wrong - misjudged him. Shouldn't Liberals embrace, rather than mock,  the image of a multi-millionaire in America who dares be seen at the pump?

Obama is claiming an electoral mandate to raise taxes on the top 2 percent. Perhaps, but remember those incessant campaign ads promising a return to the economic nirvana of the Clinton years? Well, George W. Bush cut rates across the board, not just for the top 2 percent. Going back to the Clinton rates means middle-class tax hikes that yield four times the revenue that you get from just the rich.

So give Obama the full Clinton. Let him live with that. And with what also lies on the other side of the cliff: 28 million Americans newly subject to the ruinous alternative minimum tax.

Republicans must stop acting like supplicants. If Obama so loves those Clinton rates, Republicans should say: Then go over the cliff and have them all. (Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post, 11/29/2012)

And now the great Krauthammer joins Coulter in endorsing the RedStateVT position!

The Obama administration said Friday that it would charge insurance companies for the privilege of selling health insurance to millions of Americans in new online markets run by the federal government.

The cost of these “user fees” can be passed on to consumers. The proposed fees could add 3.5 percent to premiums for private health plans sold in insurance exchanges operated by the federal government. (NYT, 11/30/2012)

And so it begins...or continues...or whatever.

The Louisiana senator (Mary Landrieu) was joined by Democratic Sens. Max Baucus of Montana, who heads the Senate Finance Committee, and Mark Pryor of Arkansas, who said this week they would prefer not to raise the estate tax. They wouldn't say how an increase would affect their support for a broader agreement as the parties scramble to head off a package of hefty spending cuts and new taxes known as the fiscal cliff. (WSJ, 11/30/2012)

So there are at least some Democrats who oppose at least some tax increases.