Musings on the Week
Musings on the Week
July 11, 2015
Independence - “I am an American; free born and free bred, where I acknowledge no man as my superior, except for his own worth, or as my inferior, except for his own demerit.” .
Politics – Rasmussen found that only 20% now consider the federal government a protector of individual liberty, while 60% see the government as a threat to individual liberty instead.
Politics – Obama frequently threatened to veto legislation he did not like, but vetoed four bills, because Republican leadership caved on key issues rather than confront the President.
Politics – The idea of “sanctuary cities” has been piloted with immigration laws, and could be expanded to unpopular environment, energy, marriage, religion, and civil rights laws.
Politics – Governor Nikki Haley caved to partisan pressure to remove the Confederate flag, despite ample evidence that it represents Southern pride and state’s rights, not racism.
Politics - This week’s distractions from the sluggish economy and ObamaCare: Trump immigration remarks and refusal to support Kurds against ISIS.
Politics – Hillary Clinton’s release of e-mails in small numbers over a long time is a self-inflicted “death by a thousand cuts” as each batch reminds us of her deceit and poor judgment.
Politics – Hillary Clinton is avoiding taking any positions on issues as she awaits the latest polls to triangulate what her position should be, but her vacillations is undermining credibility.
Politics – The two Democrat Presidential frontrunners are: Hillary Clinton, a Chicago re-tread espousing socialist ideas vs. Bernie Sanders, a New York City re-tread with socialist ideas.
Politics – Hillary Clinton has built a fanciful narrative that the media is biased against her, dubbed the “Clinton media persecution complex” which actually reflects her paranoia.
Politics – Although Carly Fiorina and Donald Trump have little chance of capturing the Presidential candidacy, they both are hammering inconvenient truths to American voters.
Media – Less than a quarter of all Americans, 24%, believe the news media try to report without bias, the lowest reported since the question was first asked in 2004.
Media – Bush suffered from “Bush fatigue,” perpetual media attack and criticism, but now Obama is suffering from “Obama-fatigue,” occurring later as media lost partisan blindfolds.
Independence - “Degrees of ability vary, but the basic principle remains the same: the degree of a man's independence, initiative and personal love for his work determines his talent as a worker and his worth as a man. Independence is the only gauge of human virtue and value. What a man is and makes of himself; not what he has or hasn't done for others. There is no substitute for personal dignity. There is no standard of personal dignity except independence.” Ayn Rand.
Economy – Cities, states, and countries (Greece and Puerto Rico) are declaring bankruptcy as socialist, redistribution of wealth policies do more harm than good, as Margaret Thatcher stated: “The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money.”
Economy – Heavy-handed government regulation has caused mergers into a small number of local monopoly companies in the finance, airlines, and medical insurance industries.
Economy – Obama is trying to peddle that the economy Is as good as it gets, a “new normal” with a record number of Americans not working, full-time jobs replaced with part-time jobs, and stagnant wages – all consequences of policies enacted by this administration.
Jobs – There are now 100 million Americans over the age of 16 that are not working including both those looking and no longer looking for employment.
Healthcare – Income redistribution is driving ObamaCare premiums higher, since many people paying for themselves and for others who can’t (subsidies), including illegal aliens.
Immigration - Over 111,250 unaccompanied alien children have crossed the U.S. border illegally since October 2011, but only about 6% have been removed to their home country.
Immigration – Our porous borders allow thousands of dangerous criminal to sneak into this country where they can rape and murder American citizens, and still not get deported.
Environment - The Earth’s climate has warmed and cooled nine times in the past 12,000 years in lock step with the waxing and waning of the Sun’s magnetic activity (sunspots).
Environment – U.N.’s Christina Figueres, admitted that environmental activists and lobbyists aim to destroy capitalism, not save the globe from ecological Armageddon.
Education – 80% of education majors are female, as are 77% of psychology majors, 61% of art and performance majors, and 82% who majored in public administration and social work.
Gun Control – Maine joined Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Kansas, Wyoming, and Vermont by legalizing permit-less carry of firearms by law abiding citizens.
Civil Rights – The affirmative action tool has out-lived its usefulness, having over-compensated for historic racist and sexist inequities on campuses and in the workplace.
Civil Rights – Civil rights progress is dependent on open and honest discussion of issues and progress achieved, but is being undermined by a suppression of free speech and symbolism.
Crime - According to Justice Department, 41.7% of the federal criminal cases filed in district courts in fiscal 2014 were in the five attorneys' districts that sit along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Welfare – The U.S. has spent more on the “War on Poverty” than on all of America’s real wars combined, and while social service spending exploded, urban decay accelerated.
Independence - “It's not radical Islam that worries the US -- it's independence.” .
GWOT – Despite our President’s assertion, enemies are not defeated with “better ideas… and a more compelling vision,” because guns win wars while ideas are useful waging wars.
GWOT – The only type of “violent extremism” this country needs to worry about is Islamic Jihadism due to its size, track record, pronouncements, tactics, and determination.
Middle East – Obama’s “whack-a-Mole” military strategy is designed to appear committed enough for support, but not enough to make a real difference in the conflict outcome.
Middle East – War against the Islamic State has cost a total of 2.91 billion, or $9.2 million per day, according to the Pentagon and has little sign of success to boast for all this expense.
Afghanistan – Obama’s faulty exit strategy is already “paying dividends” with a resurgent Taliban and a summer offensive moving from rural strongholds to attacking larger cities.
Iran – John Kerry confessed that the negotiation “deadlines” are really meaningless, since the administration is desperate for any type of “deal,” no matter how “meaningless.”
China – The great Chinese stock bubble of 2015 popped with the Shanghai Composite Index falling 32% and the tech-oriented Shenzhen Composite Index dropping 40%.
Cuba – Re-opening the embassy is fine, but any further diplomatic progress awaits resolution of nationalization compensation, human rights normalization, and lifting of trade embargoes.