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Views on the News

Views on the News*

August 8, 2015

 

Hillary Clinton is all things to all people and nothing at the same time; all the excuses of her husband, but none of the charm; and aside from which restroom she uses, she has no obvious appeal.  Hearing Hillary Clinton give a speech is like sitting in on a college civics class taught by someone who thinks she’s speaking to kindergarteners; condescension squared is about as close to an accurate description as you can get.  With all the charm of sweat socks and the warmth of the moon, Hillary Clinton is still leading a major American political party’s race for their nomination.  The unfortunate truth is that there is no viable alternative for the Democrats.  Hillary’s mere existence has propelled her to a position she is simply unsuited for.  It’s not the first time, because like 2008, Hillary was a given.  She’d been a Senator for eight years, stood by as her husband humiliated her, and was a woman, it was her time.  Rather than go with someone with a padded resume, they went with someone with no resume.  The Democrats passed on someone with few accomplishments in favor of someone with none.  Obama was an unknown, but Clinton was too well known for her own good.  Hillary is a formidable candidate in the abstract; it’s just reality where people don’t like her.  It will be lamed on sexism.  That’s the story of the Clintons; their wounds are always self-inflicted. Yes, they damage others around them too.  It’s these others who pay the highest price to their credibility, but they always end up wealthier for their loyalty.  Think of how many from the Clinton social circle are household names with high-paying jobs.  Now think of any of them with credibility? Judging by the enthusiasm gap, indifference is the only thing Hillary Clinton inspires in those who don’t stand to earn seven-figure salaries after their association with her.  None of these scandals and character flaws, individually or collectively, will be enough to beat Hillary. The media is that devout Catholic in a loveless marriage who doesn’t believe in divorce, they may want to leave, but they aren’t going anywhere.  Whoever the GOP eventually nominates will need the help of those who were defeated to vanquish the Teflon Dame, because the sooner all the candidates realize what they’re eventually going to be up against and act accordingly, the better the chances they can stick on Hillary Clinton the only label that matters – loser. 

(“The Teflon Dame” by Derek Hunter dated August 2, 2015 published by Town Hall at http://townhall.com/columnists/derekhunter/2015/08/02/the-teflon-dame-n2033514 )

Many people are under the mistaken impression that the political battle lines in America are Democrats vs. Republicans.  Some even erroneously believe the battle lines are Liberal vs. Conservative.  If you want to make sense of the seemingly-irrational behaviors of both parties, consider the reality that the battle lines are actually Elitists vs. the People.  In 2014, Republicans were swept into office in the midterms, ostentatiously to turn back Obamaism.  ObamaCare was to be repealed, or, at the least, relief was to be offered for the suffering the program is causing.  Iran was to be denied resources for developing a nuclear weapon, or, at the least, slowed in that development. Obama’s penchant for going outside the bounds of the Constitution by sidestepping Congress with overreaching and illegal Executive Orders was to be halted, or, at the least, censured.  Illegal alien invasion was to be stopped or curtailed, and violators were to be prosecuted and shipped back to their countries of origin.  Instead, the establishment Republicans re-elected John Boehner and Mitch McConnell to head the two legislative bodies.  Led by those two feckless elitists, we got the following results:  On ObamaCare, many repeal votes have failed, and most recently the Senate vote for repeal failed;  Per Iran’s quest for the atomic bomb, there has been no action by either party to stop an illegal “agreement” that went outside the bounds of the Constitutional treaty mechanisms; As regards Obama’s lawlessness and failure to heed the Constitution, no one in either legislative body has taken to the podium to denounce Barack’s dangerous behavior; On illegal alien invasion, neither the House nor the Senate are forcefully demanding that illegal aliens be deported; and as a bonus, the Senate blocked a vote to defund Planned Parenthood.  The Republicans are acting in a manner most reminiscent of Democrats.  It appears that there IS no difference between the two parties… none at all.  In the Republican grassroots, there was great frustration when the lack of opposition (by the establishment Republicans) to Democrat policies became apparent.  There are murmurings of discontent on the far-left, as well, that the Democrats are only paying lip service to their important issues.  It has become quite clear that the real fight is that of Elitists against The People.  Elitists like Planned Abortionhood whose founder’s vision was to reduce the ‘surplus population.’  Elitists like ObamaCare, with the Death Panels poised to deny treatment to ‘useless old people’.  Elitists like Communism and/or Socialism, with its control over the masses and the tendency to gather wealth at the top.  Elitists like big government and fascist police-state controls, to better keep the populace from rising up in anger. Elitists like illegal alien invasion (and have encouraged it not only in America, but European nations), because that form of invasion dilutes national identities, erases borders, and leads the world to a nationless overall government.  Elitists are using Islam’s threat to increase the police-state tactics in nation after nation.  Elitists like Agenda 21, with the stated purpose of herding us into vast cities, where we can be more efficiently worked and better controlled.  If you have signed up on the sides of the Elitists, you have many choices, foremost among those being Jeb Bush and Hillary Clinton, but if you are on the side of the people, your choices can be only Ted Cruz or Donald Trump. 

(“The New Battle Lines: Elitists vs. Us” by Lawrence Mayo dated August 2, 2015 published by American Clarion at http://www.americanclarion.com/the-new-battle-lines-elitists-vs-us-39328 )

 

The open borders movement has long been suspected as a scheme to turn red states blue to ensure permanent Democrat rule.  A slew of new reports show that the plot is real, and may be succeeding.  Democrats have long had trouble selling undisguised socialism to the voters, but are not without ideas.  If U.S. voters won't buy the bigger government programs they seek, well then importing new voters from elsewhere might just work. After all, socialism is attractive to many poor people from less-developed nations, and that's who gets visas these days.  The bottom line is that more immigration favors Democrats.  There is no prediction of Democrat electoral ascendancy that doesn't rely on demographic factors as the main engine of the party's dominance.  This calls for a re-examination of what's going on and whether it's in the broader U.S. national interest, outside of party politics.  It's long gone undiscussed that impact of current immigration policies, dating from the days of Ted Kennedy and his claims to prioritize family reunification, has had the actual effect of importing Democrats.  Now with President Obama extending amnesty to 664,607 illegals by executive order, including many with links to crime, terrorism and gangs, excluding virtually no one, it's clear that it's a vote-gathering game.  The sooner this issue is distilled to its raw political equation, the sooner we can have a national discussion about what kind of immigration benefits America, instead of what kind of immigration benefits Democrats. 

(“Immigration as Obama’s Vehicle for ‘Fundamentally Transforming’ America” dated Jul 30, 2015 published by Investor’s Business Daily at http://news.investors.com/ibd-editorials/073015-764325-immigration-obamas-vehicle-for-fundamentally-transforming-america.htm )

After days of reeling from the most macabre revelations of the Center for Medical Progress’s undercover videos, from talk of “less crunchy” abortions, to the news that “a lot of people want liver,” to clinic employees staring at dismembered human remains and exclaiming “another boy,” Planned Parenthood’s defenders are launching their counterattacks.  The stakes are quite high: In the sexual revolution’s moment of triumph, with abortion legal, marriage redefined, and the biological facts of gender rendered irrelevant in the face of human will, it has suddenly been exposed for what it is, a tawdry and deadly exercise in human selfishness.  Planned Parenthood’s defenses fall into three general categories: the desperate, the immoral, and the nonsensical.  The first, and most desperate, defense relied on buzzwords like “extremist,” and “anti-woman,” and “politically motivated” — almost always paired with an allegation that the tapes were edited. Yet by releasing the full tapes simultaneously with the condensed versions, the Center for Medical Progress was able to respond with simple truth.  Then came the immoral claim, that harvesting aborted fetal tissue for medical research is actually a good thing.  They claim that by killing these kids and selling (or receiving handsome reimbursements for) their body parts Planned Parenthood is helping advance medical research toward curing diseases like ALS.  The only way for Stern and others to justify their moral calculus is to dehumanize the aborted child, and to do so in a way that defies science.  After all, from the moment of conception a child is a distinct and separate human being, possessing its own DNA.  Planned Parenthood’s most nonsensical defense is calculated to appeal to the wavering middle, to those who don’t like abortion but also don’t necessarily want to see it outlawed.  We’ll call this Planned Parenthood’s “pro-life” defense, that defunding Planned Parenthood will actually increase abortions by depriving women of much-needed contraceptives.  Planned Parenthood claims that the 327,000 abortions it performs annually represent just 3% of its total services, and that its contraceptive distribution programs actually prevent 216,000 abortions per year.  If the contraceptive services are so valuable and the abortions so inconsequential to Planned Parenthood, why not drop 3% of its business to save the 97%?  Planned Parenthood would rather close its doors than stop killing babies, because of ideology and self-interest. Despite its protestations to the contrary, abortion is big business for Planned Parenthood, and the group is working furiously to keep it that way.  Planned Parenthood systematically and brutally kills children by the hundreds of thousands.  The Center for Medical Progress videos show that it does so with a casual indifference to the undeniable humanity of each baby.  Unless Planned Parenthood willfully gives up its abortion business, defunding the group will not only save lives, it will help rid this nation of its most reprehensible corporate citizen, because there is no credible defense for mass murder. 

(“Planned Parenthood’s Desperate, Immoral, and Nonsensical Defenses” by David French dated August 3, 2015 published by National Review Online at http://www.nationalreview.com/article/421974/planned-parenthood-defenses-desperate-immoral-nonsensical )

 

Calling this the “worst economic expansion since World War II” is like saying the ebola virus is the worst cold you ever had.  At some level you might be technically correct, but you end up communicating confusing, even misleading, information.  By just about every economic metric, this has been a mediocre, subpar recovery. For the first few years following the end of the recession in June 2009, employment increased slowly.  Wages to this day have been little changed.  Retail sales have been inconsistent; housing has seen soft sales numbers, while price increases have been a function of a lack of inventory caused by limited amounts of home equity and immobility as a consumer try to reduce debt.  Gross domestic product growth has been weak and lacking in consistency.  The post-World War II recession recoveries are the wrong frame of reference; the proper one is the much more severe set of credit-crisis collapses and recoveries.  Economists warn that the U.S. subprime mortgage issue was turning into a full-blown credit crisis, not just a typical recession.  Instead, they prefer to compare with previous financial crises, such as Japan (1992), Finland (1991), Sweden (1991), Norway (1987) and Spain (1977).  These earlier financial and credit crises had several consistent elements: A prolonged and deep decline in asset prices, including equity (average of 55%) and housing prices (average of 35%).  They also noted that banking crises are followed by “profound declines in employment.”  The average increase in the unemployment rate was seven percentage points during the four years after the collapse.  This is in line with the rise in the U.S. unemployment, rate, which increased from about 4% to 10%.  Other elements they saw as consistent with credit crises were an explosion of government debt, and costly “ambitious countercyclical fiscal policies aimed at mitigating the downturn.”  The key point here is that credit bubbles are very different from ordinary recession recoveries.  Bank crises and the long, slow painful recoveries are simply not comparable to other business cycles.  So next time someone says this is the worst recovery since World War II, remind them that the economy is recovering from a full-blown financial crisis, not just a typical recession. After all this discuss, remember Barack Obama is still the President who has presided over this long, painful recovery, and everything he has done has not made the recovery any shorter or any less painful.

(“This Recovery Really is Different” by Barry Ritholtz dated August 3, 2015 published by Bloomberg at http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2015-08-03/this-recovery-really-is-different-from-the-others )

The Obama administration today announced its Clean Power Plan rules, which set limits on carbon emissions from power plants nationwide, as part of the fight against global climate change.  Unfortunately, the Clean Power Plan packs neither the environmental nor diplomatic punch the Obama administration has claimed, because it offers little flexibility and comes at enormous economic expense.  The United States is responsible for only 5% of the world’s total carbon emissions.  Using the EPA’s own climate-model emulator, the Clean Power Plan rules will affect climate by less than two-hundredths of a degree Celsius by 2100, an amount so miniscule that it’s nearly impossible to measure.  Of course, developing countries are responsible for most of the world’s carbon emissions.  Even the Obama administration and its allies in Congress acknowledge this, but they claim that the Clean Power Plan will help them reach a broader agreement at the United Nations climate conference in Paris late this fall.  The big problem is that there’s little reason to expect that the developing world will make the economic sacrifices necessary to reduce emissions.  Beijing is a key bellweather, and early developments in negotiations aren’t promising.  China promises only to “stop increasing” carbon emissions by 2030, which is to say, Beijing will allow emissions to increase for another 15 years, even as the United States requires power plants, by 2030, to reduce their carbon emissions by 32% from 2005 levels.  China also will strive to get one-fifth of its energy from renewable sources by 2030, relying on dirtier energy to fill the rest.  China’s pollution problems are severe, and the valid environmental concerns of its citizens have increasing political importance.  Nevertheless, the cadres in Beijing rely on economic growth for their legitimacy; so, with roughly 200 million Chinese living on $1.25 a day or less, it is doubtful that the Chinese Communist Party will impose environmental protections that could hinder growth.  However in the United States, the federal government plans to strictly enforce these draconian regulations.  At the same time that the EPA overstates the impact of the Clean Power Plan on climate change, it substantially understates the impact on the national economy.  Even so, the EPA has predicted that complying with the Clean Power Plan will be equivalent to the combined total cost of all Clean Air Act rules set forth up to 2010.  National Economic Research Associates predicts an eye-popping compliance costs of up to $479 billion.  Though President Obama is claiming the Clean Power Plan will ultimately save Americans $85 per year on their utility bills, the NERA study found that households in 43 states will actually see double-digit price hikes.  While the Obama administration claims that the Clean Power Plan is flexible, allowing states to figure out the best way to implement the regulations, the reality is quite different. If the EPA doesn’t approve of the plans that state legislatures submit, the agency can just impose its own methods, as it has done with the rules on regional haze.  Already, states are pushing back: Fourteen states, along with the Murray Energy Corporation and others in the energy sector, launched a recent challenge to the Clean Power Plan in federal court.  More than a dozen more states anticipate taking future legal action against the regulations, and others have threatened to defy the EPA’s mandates outright.  The Clean Power Plan exemplifies bad policy, deeply harming the economy without meaningful environmental achievements. 

(“Obama’s Clean Power Plan Will Cost Billions and Lower Temps by Two-Hundredths of a Degree Celsius by 2100” by Jillian Kay Melchior dated August 4, 2015 published by National Review Online at http://www.nationalreview.com/article/421992/clean-power-plan-will-cost-billions-wont-lower-temperature )

President Obama's sordid Iran nuke deal is looking more and more like the foreign policy version of ObamaCare.  It's duplicitous, secretive, destructive and legacy-driven, and he's going to have to go full community organizer to get it passed.  It is the culmination of Obama's dangerously flawed philosophy that you enhance national security through appeasement.  Never mind that this terrorist theocracy, by its own admission, is immune to rehabilitation.  Even in the midst of negotiations with the Obama regime, the mullahs didn't bother to pretend they had goodwill toward us.  It was as though Iran's leaders were trying to validate the deal's opponents, demonstrating their contempt for America and Israel, showing their intention to continue sponsoring global terrorism, and signaling their unwillingness to submit to legitimate inspections.  The Obama regime's denial of Iran's malevolence grew in direct proportion to Iran's confessions.  Obama's problem is that you can only fool part of the people part of the time.  His propaganda machine doesn't always succeed, as some facts are too stubborn to ignore. Whether there are limits to the Democrat Party's loyalty to party over country, on the other hand, is another matter.  Polls show that just as with ObamaCare, Obama has been unable to fool the majority of Americans into believing that this deal is good for America.  A Quinnipiac poll shows that 57% of Americans oppose it, whereas only 28% support it.  By similar majorities, Americans disapprove of the way Obama is handling the situation in Iran and believe that the deal makes the world less safe.  Don't assume this gives Obama a second's pause; it simply inspires him to push harder. But he is growing desperate.  So Obama has launched an intense lobbying effort of congressional Democrats.  As with the 2012 presidential election, he knows he can't win GOP support, so he has shucked any pretense of bipartisanship and turned to the far left for support.  Like a seasoned community organizer, he is isolating and demonizing his opponents and distorting facts that damage his cause.  Obama is arguing that opposition to his deal is coming from the same groups that led us to war in Iraq, by which he is not so subtly implying Jewish groups.  Meanwhile, John Kerry is telling us that Iran's supreme leader wasn't serious when he called for "death to America."  The Obama administration wants us to believe it instead of Iran concerning Iran's intentions.  He's pursuing a "don't trust but verify" strategy with Iran, yet the specifics of the deal scream otherwise.  Not only are "anytime, anywhere" site inspections absent from the deal but also the United States has a subordinate role in the inspections process.  The deal results in the likely acceleration of Iran's acquisition of nuclear weapons, and it frees up billions to Iran, which can and will use the funds to sponsor global terrorism.  Just as with ObamaCare, everything about this deal is wrong and the American people oppose it, which is why Obama will become more militant and deceitful in trying to cram it down our throats.  Now is not the time to mince words about the evils we face; now is not the time to pull our punches in deference to the false gods of bipartisanship and compromise, which only one party (the GOP) honors, in any event.  Just like ObamaCare, we can't rely on America's waning rule of law to save us from this unconstitutional and reckless monstrosity.  Perhaps our side can take a page from Obama's playbook and pull out all the stops in opposing this deal, because the stakes are too high to sit this one out.

(“Iran Deal is Obama’s Foreign Policy ObamaCareby David Limbaugh dated August 4, 2015 published by Town Hall at http://townhall.com/columnists/davidlimbaugh/2015/08/04/iran-deal-is-obamas-foreign-policy-obamacare-n2034144 )

 

There is so much published each week that unless you search for it, you will miss important breaking news.  I try to package the best of this information into my “Views on the News” each Saturday morning.  No updates have been made this week to the issue sections.

 

David Coughlin

Hawthorne, NY

http://www.returntocommonsensesite.com/