Thursday, September 29, 2011

Sen. Durbin admits: Obama "Jobs" bill unpopular even with Democrats

During his speech earlier this month, Pres. Obama commanded Congress to "pass this bill" some 17 times. Apparently, he hadn't checked to see even whether the Democrats would support the bill. The Hill reports:
Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said, at the moment, Democrats in Congress dont have the votes to pass President Obamas jobs bill, but Durbin added that that situation would change. 
If any more proof was needed that Obama was never serious about the Jobs bill, this is it.

Politicized Science, the delta smelt, and California farmers

U.S. District Court Judge Oliver W. Wanger declared that testimony from two Interior Dept. scientists, Frederick V. Feyrer and Jennifer M. Norris, was “false,” “contradictory” and “misleading”  and that the Interior Department acted in “bad faith”  in regards to the use of the delta smelt fish and the endangered species act to stop water flow to California farmers.  More at Instapundit, the New York Times, and the San Francisco Examiner.

PREVIOUSLY on California farmers protesting against the water cutoff:
Farmers protest in San Jose (Nov. 21).
PREVIOUSLY on politicized science:
EPA uses phony peer review
National Academy of Sciences warns EPA on junk science
The failed science of environmentalism
Federal Judge rejects Federal enviromental "science" as "arbititrary and capricious"
The politicization of medical research funding
2 more examples of politicized science: Gulf oiil spill and California's air regulations
AIDS advocates distorted science
Politicized science of crime statistics
Politicization of medical science
Bee colony collapse disorder: the cause is whatever your politics say it is
Ozone hole and politics

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Colorado cantaloupes have killed more people this year than US commercial nuclear power in its entire history

The UK Guardian reports:
A listeria outbreak linked to cantaloupes from Colorado has killed 13 people and infected 59 others, US health officials have said. [Emph. added]
The FDA associates the outbreak with Jensen Farms’ Rocky Ford-brand cantaloupes.

How many people have been killed by commercial nuclear power plants in the US? None, as best I can tell. This Wikipedia article lists deaths from nuclear and radiation accidents and none are attributed to US commercial nuclear power in its entire history. (The Wikipedia article does not list Three Mile Island because no one died at Three Mile Island. For more details, the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission's summary of the health effects of Three Mile Island is here.)

Hat tip: Instapundit

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Obama's rich fantasy life

In Commentary, Peter Wehner writes:
I have written before about Obama’s deep, almost desperate, need to portray himself as the opposite of what he is, to conceive of himself in a way that is at odds with reality. We have seen it in all sorts of areas, including claiming himself to be a voice of civility, portraying himself as a champion of bi-partisanship, lecturing others about profligate spending, and saying he is the only responsible “adult” in Washington. Now we see this habit in a new arena – this time, the president as Obama the Stoic, a man so committed to “pressing on” for the cause of social justice he just doesn’t have time to feel sorry for himself. Indeed, he has now decided to sermonize to others not to complain, not to grumble, and to “stop crying.”

This is akin to John Edwards hosting a weekend seminar on the importance of marital fidelity.
At times, I think that the main purpose of liberalism is the avoidance of unpleasant realities.

Hat tip: Instapundit.

PREVIOUSLY on liberals and their fantasy worlds:
Liberal talk show hosts and their paranoid fantasies
Rep. Pete Stark fantasizes about Pres. Bush's motives
Hate crime fantasies
Real or fantasy: Obama's core value is "unity"?
Salon Magazine and its sexual fantasies involving Sarah Palin
Michelle Obama fantasizes that she is the first White House resident to care about military families
Feminist imagines that all men are pro-rape and pro-domestic violence
Rep. Barney Frank's fantasies: the mortgage crisis was caused by "conservatives"
How reporters avoid addressing reality
If only hate could change false to true

Friday, September 23, 2011

It's a paradox, education edition

The Sacramento Bee reports on a "paradox": student test scores have increased after several years of public school budget cuts:

They write:

It's a trend that would seem to defy conventional wisdom: As public school spending has declined in California in recent years, student achievement test scores have gone up.

Statewide, school districts spent 6 percent less from 2008 to 2010, but the percentage of second- to seventh-grade students scoring proficient on the state's standardized English test rose from 48 percent to 55 percent.

In the Sacramento region, the same held true. School districts in the four-county region cut annual spending by about $120 million, or 4.4 percent, from 2008 to 2010, hampered by the lousy economy and state funding cuts. That translates to a 1 percent cut per student. But during that same period, their state achievement test scores improved – a lot.

It is a "paradox" only if you think that government schools spend their money wisely on things that actually affect student learning.

PREVIOUSLY on the paradoxes that vex liberal minds:
It's a paradox: Congress unpopular "despite record"
"Ironically," conservatives and their children are happier
It's a paradox!: Crime down when criminals are in jail.
Paradox: crime is down (again)
Paradox: few fraudulent voters if voters are required to have IDs

PREVIOUSLY on the subject of education:
Study: teacher's unions are bad for education
Study: sexist women teachers stunt learning of girl students
Black students, harassed for "acting white," get $150,000
Teaching self-esteem backfires
Education in Korea vs. the US: does "self-esteem" backfire?
LA pays teachers not to teach
What teachers learn in teacher's ed.
Obama promises to throw money at schools
How to get a job teaching in California even if you are illiterate

Monday, September 19, 2011

Sophisticated thinking at the New York Times

James Taranto spots the New York Times having difficulty with math:
The New York Times reports from Frankfurt that "foreign leaders" are pressuring the Greek government to institute "a range of draconian layoffs and pay reductions among public sector workers" in order to avert default. Check out this bit of analysis in the course of the story:

The original aid package requires Greece to reduce its deficit to 7.5 percent of gross domestic product this year, and below 3 percent by 2014, according to the International Monetary Fund.
The reduced number of workers employed in the public sector would only add to the difficulty of meeting these targets as payroll tax collections shrink.

Unless employees of the Greek government pay more than 100% of their wages in taxes, this cannot possibly add up.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

NPR: Obama is still like Jesus

Not all liberals have soured on Pres. Obama.  Frank James, writing at, stills sees Obama as a biblical figure:
The realities of governing as opposed to the unrealities of presidential campaigns may have made President Obama a much more human figure compared with the almost messiah-like status he had in the eyes of many supporters in 2008.

But that doesn't mean there still isn't the occasional moment reminiscent of a Bible story.

At a rally on the campus of North Carolina State in Raleigh, N.C. Wednesday where President Obama went to drum up support for his jobs bill, this happened.

AUDIENCE MEMBER: I love you, Barack!

THE PRESIDENT: I love you back. (Applause.) But first — but if you love me — if you love me, you got to help me pass this bill. (Applause.) If you love me, you got to help me pass this bill.

 Here's John 21:15, the New International Version, describing a scene between Jesus and his disciples:
When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter,"Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?"

"Yes, Lord," he said, "you know that I love you."

Jesus said, "Feed my lambs."

Hat tip: The Corner and Hot Air.

NPR's Frank James says minorities support child prostitution?
NPR: If criminals make you uncomfortable, you are a "hardened racist"
NPR allies itself with George Soros
NPR declares Sonia Sotomayor to be "moderate" or even "conservative"

Thursday, September 15, 2011

RomneyCare, fail

In a preview of what ObamaCare will do for the US, a study by Suffolk University’s Beacon Hill Institute found that RomneyCare has been a disaster for Massachusetts, costing over 18,000 jobs.  The Boston Herald reports (hat tip: GatewayPundit):

The Bay State’s controversial 2006 universal health-care plan — also known as “Romneycare” — has cost Massachusetts more than 18,000 jobs, according to an exclusive blockbuster study that could provide ammo to GOP rivals of former Gov. Mitt Romney as he touts his job-creating chops on the campaign trail.

“Mandating health insurance coverage and expanding the demand for health services without increasing supply drove up costs. Economics 101 tells us that,” said Paul Bachman, research director at Suffolk University’s Beacon Hill Institute, the conservative think tank that conducted the study. The Herald obtained an exclusive copy of the findings. . . .

Despite Romney’s vaunted business acumen as a successful venture capitalist, Bachman said the former governor “was a little naive about what would become of the law.”

The Beacon Hill Institute study found that, on average, Romneycare:

•    cost the Bay State 18,313 jobs;

•    drove up total health insurance costs in Massachusetts by $4.311 billion;

•    slowed the growth of disposable income per person by $376; and

•    reduced investment in Massachusetts by $25.06 million.

Class warfare

Steve Kemp captures another yet another fascinating video of Democrats in action. This is from Rep. Barbara Lee's Town Hall meeting in Oakland California, August 16, 2011 and features rhetoric from Representives Nancy Pelosi, Barbara Lee, Raul Grijalva and Mike Honda. Their agenda is class war:

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Bob Turner (R) wins NY-9!

Republican Bob Turner won in a heavily Democratic district in New York City (Brooklyn/Queens). Separately, the Republican Mark Amodei won in Nevada-2, a safe Republican district.

Turner's victory is particularly surprising not just because of his party but also because he is a Catholic running against a Jew in a heavily Jewish district. Polls seem to indicate that the key issue was not Obama's economic policies but rather Obama's strained relationship with Israel. (Slate argues that it the Democrat's support for gay marriage.)

The Washington Post is trying to spin the results as showing a "fickle" electorate. They cite Democrat Hochul's win in an upstate NY special election earlier this year as evidence that "Republican momentum should be seen as momentary." Their article omits mentioning that the margin of victory in that election was provided a dirty trick: Millionaire Democrat Jack Davis ran as a pretend "Tea Party" candidate garnering 9% of the vote, giving Hochul the margin she needed for victory.

Both sides in the NY-9 campaign are accusing the other of dirty tricks, as the Daily Caller reports (hat tip: LegalInsurrection and Ace):
The campaign of Democrat David Weprin sent out a press release Tuesday accusing supporters of Republican Bob Turner of organizing an effort to jam the Weprin campaign’s phones. In response, Turner communications director William O’Reilly noted that Jewish residents of the district were receiving phone calls from a phony group calling itself “Jews for Jesus for Turner,” which he called an attempt to scare Jewish voters.
Are there no adults in the room?

Obama's idea of "bipartisianship"

The Hill reports:
Obama's top political adviser David Axelrod said Tuesday that the administration was unwilling to break up the president’s $447 billion jobs plan if Republicans were only receptive to passing certain elements.

"We're not in a negotiation to break up the package. It's not an à la carte menu. It's a strategy to get this country moving,” Axelrod said Tuesday on ABC's "Good Morning America." [Emph. added]

When, exactly, has the Congress ever passed a pork-barrel spending "jobs" bill without negotiating elements of it?

If there is an adult in the room, he is not the one living in the White House.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

“Are you guys ready? Let’s roll.”

From ChicagoBoyz (Hat tip: Instapundit):
The only part of the American national security establishment that successfully defended America on 9/11 was the portion of the reserve militia on board Flight 93, acting without orders, without hierarchy, without uniforms or weapons, by spontaneous organization and action.
Because of Todd Beamer and his compatriots on Flight 93, the enemy knows that brave American citizens would stop any similar hijack attempts.  In a few harrowing minutes, the passengers on Flight 93 did more for the future secuity of airline passengers than anything that the TSA, with its crotch-checks and naked-body scanners, has done in the years since.

PREVIOUSLY on the subject of terrorism:
Dept. of Justice supports citizenship for terrorist-Americans
The TSA's new slogan (comic)
Arab Technology meets German Engineering
Saddam provided terrorists with money, training camps, and weapons says ex-Minister Aziz
9-11 in review

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

CEOs to Obama: Get out of the way!

CNBC reports (Hat tip: Instapundit):
We asked several CEOs leading up to the speech what bold steps Obama could take to reduce the 9.1 percent unemployment rate.

John Schiller, chairman and CEO of Energy XXI, said "if the government would get out of the way, from a regulation standpoint, and let us [XXI] do what we do good you'll see us continue to hire and grow this economy."

"I think that's a message from across the board," said Schiller.

Richard Parsons, chairman of Citigroup, told CNBC there are some specific things that can be done "in terms of moving government out of the way where its in the way of job creation."

In other words, it's the regulations, stupid.

PREVIOUSLY on the failure of liberal economic theories:
Survey of CEOs: Obamanomics is still the problem

Is it a "civil right" for drug addicts to get welfare checks?

News4 (Jacksonville) reports:
The American Civil Liberties Union of Florida plans to challenge the state's law requiring new welfare recipients to pass a drug test.An ACLU spokesman told The Associated Press Wednesday the lawsuit is being filed on behalf of a 35-year-old Orlando man, Luis Lebron.The spokesman says Florida's drug testing law is unconstitutional, saying it violates the Fourth Amendment's search and seizure protections.
In support of Al Qaeda, ACLU sues Boeing
The ACLU and America's legal paralysis
ACLU opposes the Bill of Rights but supports easy vote fraud
ACLU argues for right to privacy for those who have sex in public bathrooms
ACLU funded ads vs. the facts

After gun control comes knife control

Boston already has strict gun control but still has a high and rising murder rate.  Consequently, the great minds on the Boston city council are proposing strengthening the knife control laws.  You can watch a video of Councilors Michael Ross and Tito Jackon explaining their proposal here.

Knife control and even pepper spray control in Massachusetts is not new.  TheBlaze writes:
Current Massachusetts law bans all sorts of weapons and imposes draconian prison terms for their possession. Many knives such as switchblades are illegal outright. You need a license to carry pepper spray.  One could guess this has made the city much safer from rogue female joggers.
Does knife control prevent crime?  Britain already has knife control.  In the Wall Street Journal, Joyce Lee Malcolm reviews the results of Britain's efforts at gun and knife control:

The ban on handguns did not stop actual crimes committed with handguns. Those crimes rose nearly 40%, according to a 2001 study by King's College London's Center for Defence Studies, and doubled by a decade later, according to government statistics reported in the London Telegraph in October 2009.

Knives? It's illegal for anyone under age 18 to buy one, and using a knife for self-defense is unlawful. In 1991, American tourist Dina Letarte of Tempe, Ariz., used a penknife to protect herself from a violent attack by three men in a London subway. She was convicted of carrying an offensive weapon, fined, and given a two-year suspended sentence.

The result of policies that punish the innocent but fail to deter crime has been stark, even before the latest urban violence. The last decade has seen a doubling of gun crime. According to the latest annual report of the Home Office (2009), there was a 25% increase in crimes involving contact, such as assault and battery, over the previous year.

PREVIOUSLY on crime:

NPR: If criminals make you uncomfortable, you are a "hardened racist"
Pro-crime immigration policy
Fake hate crimes
Hate crimes (and anti-Semitism) in the US
Our outdated criminal justice system
Court: Big brother may track you
CSI Fail: bite mark analysis
Why is Islam popular in prison?
Obama DoJ: vote fraud helps "increase turnout"
An insider's guide to vote fraud
In liberal paradise, dissent will be a crime
Should it be a crime to disagree?
Art or hate crime: you decide
Pro-crime: left defends sex slave ring because they were illegals (say what?)
To rise to power, 20th century fascists depended on liberal do-gooders.

Monday, September 05, 2011

Democrats and their short memories

It was just a few months ago when liberals started lecturing about "civility."  Now, they have forgotten about that completely.  Recently, they have been outraged aver Boehner's "unprecedented" action delaying Obama's speech by a day.   In doing so, they forgotten how Democratic Congresses have treated Republican Presidents.  James Freeman at the Wall Street Journal looked into how the Democrats treated one of Reagan's requests to speak and Reagan's much more civilized response to it:
Much of the media has been running with the claim that a president's request to speak to Congress has never been rejected until this week. Various Capitol Hill "historians" have been quoted saying that House Speaker John Boehner took unprecedented action when he cited the difficulty of hosting President Obama on the president's requested date of Sept. 7. We're not so sure.

The truth is that you don't have to go back that far in the nation's history to find a similar circumstance. And unlike the current speaker, who quickly agreed to host the president on the following day, Sept. 8, a previous holder of the gavel refused to grant the White House request, regardless of the date and time.

The June 24, 1986, edition of The Wall Street Journal featured a story headlined, "President's Bid to Address the House On Nicaragua Is Rejected by Speaker." That's right, no quibbling over the date and time, just a flat-out rejection. In that case, President Ronald Reagan wanted to address the House before its critical vote on funding for the anti-communist "Contra" rebels in Nicaragua. . . .  Reagan already had the votes to prevail in the Senate, and Mr. O'Neil wanted to avoid having the spotlight turned on the House, which would make him and his colleagues accountable to the public if Contra aid were rejected. . . .

A White House aide at the time tells us that Reagan simply shrugged off the rejection and said, "They have televisions up there on Capitol Hill, don't they?" He made his case on TV instead and then won the House vote to continue assisting the Nicaraguan freedom fighters. [Emph. added]

Hat tip: Greg.

PREVIOUSLY on Democrats and short memories:
Rep. Speier rewrites history
Speaker Pelosi, the Democratic Party, and hysterical amnesia
Rep. Barney Frank suffers amnesia regarding housing policy.
Moveon forgets whether is supported or opposed Afghanistan war
Memories work differently in adults and children

The environment: communists vs. capitalists

Liberals often blame pollution on "greedy corporations." So how do communist societies deal with pollution? The New York Times reports on how Chinese Communist Party officials lower pollution:
This capital city’s skies were clogged with pollution, as is often the case, and China’s government was concerned. So it summoned officials of the American Embassy here to a meeting.

But the session had nothing to do with hazy skies. Rather, Chinese officials were peeved that the Americans were monitoring pollution themselves, and posting on Twitter for anyone to read, their more precise findings, which usually judged the smog far worse than official Chinese readings.

Chinese officials feared the conflicting information “might lead to ‘social consequences,’ ” an American Embassy cable quoted the officials as saying. So could the Americans please block Chinese citizens from visiting the Web site?

In sum, the communist solution for pollution: lie about it.

The details my differ but Al Gore uses the same strategy.

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Yet another Democrat fundraiser arrested

The Orange County Register reports that Ms. Kinde Durkee was arrested "in connection with" her work as a Democratic campaign treasurer:
A prominent Democratic campaign treasurer who works for federal, state and O.C. lawmakers including U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Rep. Loretta Sanchez and state legislators Lou Correa and Jose Solorio has been arrested by the FBI on suspicion of mail fraud, The Orange County Register has learned.

U.S. Attorney's Office spokesman Thom Mrozek confirmed Saturday afternoon that Kinde Durkee of Burbank-based Durkee and Associates, was arrested by the FBI on a criminal complaint filed by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Sacramento. Special Agent Steve Dupre of the bureau’s Sacramento office said she was arrested in connection with her position as a campaign treasurer.

The LA Times reports that Durkee is accused of embezzlement of campaign funds.

PREVIOUSLY on Democrat fundraising:
Democrat fundraiser indicted
Top Dem fundraiser pleads guilty
Clinton Donor indicted
Top Dem fundraiser pleads guilty
Corruption loses a key advocate
How to buy a congressman
How politics is done
Bernie Madoff was a major donor to left/liberal causes.

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