Views on the News
October 23, 2010
Views on the News*
If Barack Obama had been a commercial product instead of a political candidate, then he and his brand creators would be facing one of the most massive class action suits ever to hit any American business. Sold to the American public as “sort of God,” marketed as a political savior of such extraordinary intelligence and giftedness that there had simply never been anyone like him, Barack Obama so misrepresented himself that hundreds of pundits are still trying to make sense of what went wrong. So, imagine that corporate laws against fraudulent branding applied to political advertising. Well, if they did, then Barack Obama would prove the quintessential false branding case. Considering all the damage this President has done to our economy, our standing in world affairs, and our ability to protect ourselves from Islamic terrorism, there isn’t a citizen in this nation that couldn’t climb on board any class action suit against his outlandishly fraudulent campaign claims. Fraudulent advertising is no laughing matter in the business world. There are laws against so blatantly misrepresenting one’s product. In the world of commerce, what’s in the box had better be as it was advertised or you’ll be in a heap of trouble with not only your bamboozled customers, but with every regulatory agency that has a single pencil-pusher. On the intelligence claims, no proof has ever surfaced that any of the Obama brainiac hoopla was anything other than gratuitous accolades granted via affirmative action and white-liberal racial guilt with: no transcripts and no professional articles. From kindergarten through law school, not a single shred of evidence has ever surfaced to show that Barack Obama was ever even a good student, much less the brainy wizard of his advertisers’ imaginations. Then, let’s take those godlike claims: the ones to end the rising of the seas and heal all the sick. Well, anyone who bought that overstuffed load of narcissistic hype is a candidate for the evolutionary throwback pail, but still, it was a heap of fraudulent advertising, the likes of which would put any American business on the bankruptcy auction block in a Chicago minute. The fact that the candidate did nothing to discourage such over-hyping garbage and the fact that he even indulged it to the nth degree would make him lawsuit-fodder in anyone’s book. Not only has President Obama failed to over-perform his predecessors in the job, he has under-performed so badly that the only way he can even put forth the pretense that there’s anyone there is to bring on a staff of dozens of unaccountable czars and shift his real responsibilities to them. A great many Americans still like the president but they don’t respect him. As soon as reality hit the branders’ myth, respect started to melt faster than a Yankee candle. By promising things no mere mortal could ever deliver and jumping into a job for which he was dolefully unprepared, those who loved the symbolic racial victory the most have tragically been the ones most hurt by the Obama lie. Any time a mere mortal puts himself on a pedestal complete with faux Greek columns and the fanfare of a media army who tingle at the mere mention of his name, the only words which ought to sear into the American mind are: Buyer Beware!!!! You are about to be bamboozled, swindled, and taken for the most expensive ride you can imagine. Your stupidity will cost you, your children and your grandchildren the farm and every stick on it.
(“Barack Obama and the Pitfalls of Fraudulent Branding” by Kyle-Anne Shiver dated October 18, 2010 published by Pajamas Media at http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/barack-obama-and-the-pitfalls-of-fraudulent-branding/ )
Every measure of consumer confidence suggests attitudes consistent with an even more prolonged recession. The supreme confidence, national pride, and sense of achievement that marked the nation through its first 200 years have been transformed into a mood of doubt. The spasm of hope and idealism that greeted Barack Obama's election two years ago has gone up in smoke. Even the wealthiest and most highly educated are anxious at the decline of America's competitiveness. Our government has been incapable of addressing the nation's problems rationally and constructively. We are haunted that the world is catching up with America; the sense of uniqueness and self-esteem that has been a part of our national character since our founding and has been amplified since World War II is steadily eroding. Consequently every measurement of consumer confidence suggests attitudes consistent with an even more prolonged recession as the surge of government spending from the stimulus program and the need for companies to build back some inventory peter out. A sense of malaise is pervasive. As the economist David Rosenberg points out, the list of statistics now available should scare everybody:
· 1 in every 10 American homeowners missed a mortgage payment in the first quarter;
· Roughly 1 in 6 Americans are either unemployed, underemployed, or left the labor force;
· Over 4 in 10 unemployed Americans have been out of work for at least six months;
· 1 in 4 Americans with a mortgage have negative equity in their homes;
· only 1 in 10 Americans believe that their incomes will rise in the next six months;
· Only 1 in 5 see business conditions improving during the same period;
· Only 1 in 8 Americans believe that government policy is actually helping the economy.
The consumer confidence index remains near or below its lows of the previous four recessions:
· Household debt, which was about 30% in relation to disposable income in 1950 and went to 60% in 1970, is now 125% and it might take as long as a decade to return to the earlier, safer range.
· The public's aversion to risk is reflected in mutual fund flows, which indicate a substantial transfer of funds toward fixed-income securities and away from strategies that look for capital appreciation and assume higher risk.
· Normally in two-plus years after a recession starts, nominal GDP is in double figures and real GDP is up by 7.5% but currently, nominal GDP is up slightly over 1% and real GDP is down from pre-recession peaks.
By some key measures, this is the weakest recovery ever and as for employment, housing, and personal income, there has been no recovery at all. The expectation for the next several years is of even more financial trauma, chronically high unemployment, and poor economic performance reflected in constraints on discretionary spending and credit, and housing attitudes that will likely remain negative for many years. It is imperative that our national government in Washington change its ways. The public will no longer tolerate the accumulation of deficits and debts to pay for short-term, quick fixes and initiatives aimed at bailing out this or that sector of the economy, whether they be homeowners, businesses, automobile dealers—or well-pensioned public sector workers. The population has lost confidence in interventionist policies. They look again for American pragmatism to revive the country and for policies that promote education, infrastructure, a coherent energy strategy, and programs to create incentives to hire people. American voters demand long-term programs to restore and protect the economic welfare of the people.
(“America’s Supreme Confidence Has Become a Malaise” by Mortimer R. Zuckerman dated October 18, 2010 published by US News & World Report at http://politics.usnews.com/opinion/mzuckerman/articles/2010/10/18/mort-zuckerman-americas-supreme-confidence-has-become-a-malaise.html )
We are witnessing the unmistakable collapse of an American Presidency with chief among its causes being the unbridled hubris that prompted him to force ObamaCare, the government takeover of the finest health care system in the world, against the clear will of "we the people" while turning his back on the free-market principles that once made us the most prosperous nation on earth. A diminished president, even if his fate is self-inflicted, is not good for America and should not be pleasing to any patriot regardless of his or her political leanings. Barack Obama made so many ObamaCare promises and the evidence so far is that they are all unkeepable:
· ObamaCare hearings would be held in public – The President totally ignored this promise.
· ObamaCare would reduce our deficit - Even the President's own actuary now admits the overhaul will increase, not decrease, the deficit.
· ObamaCare would allow you to keep your doctor and your current insurance - Estimates are that 90 million Americans will lose their current insurance policies because of the takeover, and millions of them will be forced into Medicaid and government exchanges.
· ObamaCare would not jeopardize senior citizens' care - Already, 42% of doctors do not accept Medicare, and that number will increase.
· ObamaCare would not ration health care - The President recess appointed Dr. Donald Berwick as the head of Medicare, who is an admirer of the British Health System which purposely undersupplies medical needs to alleviate "bottlenecks."
· ObamaCare would not raise taxes on anyone earning less than $250,000 a year - New excise taxes on pharmaceuticals and medical products will by necessity be passed on to the patients who depend on these lifesaving medicines, pacemakers, MRI machines or even tongue depressors.
· ObamaCare would create 4 million new jobs, 400,000 almost immediately - Since the health care takeover was signed into law, no such jobs boom has occurred.
So what needs to be done? We must defund, repeal and replace ObamaCare before it defunds America, destroys the finest health care system in the world and replaces it with a European social-welfare government-run version. First, in 2010, elect candidates who understand that health care freedom, like our other freedoms, saves lives. Elect candidates who pledge to first defund ObamaCare immediately and then will vote for its repeal. Second, let's convince this President that it's in the nation's best interest, and his own, to undo this unholy government takeover that bears his name. If we cannot convince this President of his health care mistake, then in 2012, let's elect a President who will undo the damage.
(“Obamacare’s Unkeepable Promises” by Milton R. Wolf dated October 21, 2010 published by The Washington Times at http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/oct/21/we-are-witnessing-the-unmistakable-collapse-of-an-/ )
The foreclosure document mess is a red-flag indication that a long-term leftist strategy to take down the nation as we know it is as close to “success” as it has ever been. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac own or guarantee $5.5 trillion of mortgages -- more than half of all US home mortgages. Major banks such as Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Citicorp, and JP Morgan Chase service the loans for Fannie and Freddie for fees. Many banks, including Bank of America, have halted all sales of foreclosed properties. The state of Connecticut slapped a 60-day moratorium on all foreclosure sales earlier this month. Title insurers are backing away. A brazen gambit to get banks off the hook for many of their documentation errors, the “Interstate Recognition of Notarizations Act of 2010,” zoomed through Congress and reached President Obama’s desk last week. The President pocket-vetoed it. The goal of the unsuccessful legislation was to force state courts “to give equal treatment to notarized documents … that were notarized out of state.” Apparently, many overwhelmed mortgage servicers frequently failed to have their foreclosure documents properly notarized in the states where their delinquent borrowers live; in some cases, they weren’t notarized at all. In the courts, non-notarized or improperly notarized documents relating to real property usually aren’t enforceable. The key word in the previous paragraph is “overwhelmed.” In full context, mortgage servicers’ inability to keep their foreclosure documents in order is best seen as a symptom of a system thrown into crisis by decades-long employment of a deliberately disruptive “progressive” tactic applied to housing and home lending. Its roots go back to 1960s radicals Richard Andrew Cloward and Frances Fox Piven. The “Cloward-Piven strategy” forces political change through orchestrated crisis, and seeks to hasten the fall of capitalism by overloading the government bureaucracy with a flood of impossible demands, thus pushing society into crisis and economic collapse. The strategy’s filthy fingerprints are all over housing and mortgage lending, in at least these forms:
· The Community Reinvestment Act and its amendments, which enabled “community organizations” to force banks to make imprudent loans as a condition of getting regulatory approval of mergers, acquisitions, and other corporate actions.
· The explosive growth of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and the quiet de facto government takeover of the mortgage loan approval process that accompanied it.
· Once they had commandeered the approval process, the deliberate loosening of lending standards at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which enabled throngs of undeserving applicants to buy houses they couldn’t afford.
· Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s 15-year campaign of fraudulently overstating the quality of loans in the mortgage-backed securities they issued.
If the system isn’t already overwhelmed, it’s awfully close. The left’s goal of “pushing society into crisis and economic collapse” appears to be within their grasp and Barack Obama is now President of the United States. The foreclosure mess is so pervasive that I don’t see how anyone can be comfortable making a prediction as to where it’s heading. Whether Cloward and Piven ultimately get their way heavily depends on November’s election results, aggressive post-election action to restore constitutional governance, and lots of prayer for those who must deal with this.
(“The Foreclosure Document Mess: Cloward, Piven, and Their President Are Surely Pleased” by Tom Blumer dated October 17, 2010 published by Pajamas Media at http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/the-foreclosure-document-mess-cloward-piven-and-their-president-are-surely-pleased/
“Fault Fannie, Freddie” by Stephen B. Meister dated October 23, 2010 published by New York Post at http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/opedcolumnists/fault_fannie_freddie_ZJpw6tlmd4S9ocAOlk6eIL )
Although the Senate is in recess, both Republicans and Democrats in the Senate introduced immigration bills in October to set the stage for debate on the issue through the election, the lame duck session, and the 112th Congress. Republicans do not need an 800-page bill like Menendez’s, but there are a few simple principles that need to guide our policies. We must increase border security and interior enforcement against illegal immigration. We need to remove rewards for illegal aliens, and we need to reform our excessive legal immigration policies to protect American workers and taxpayers. The anti-amnesty organization Numbers USA lists 5 bills in the House of Representatives that will give real “comprehensive immigration reform”:
· The SAVE Act mandates E-Verify to ensure that employers cannot hire illegal aliens and increases border security and interior enforcement.
· The CLEAR Act clarifies the inherent right of states to enforce immigration law, which will prevent the Obama administration and activist judges from interfering with Arizona’s SB 1070 and similar state and local laws.
· The Birthright Citizenship Act will end the absurd practice of giving automatic citizenship to the children of illegal aliens.
· The SAFE Act will abolish the diversity lottery system.
· The Nuclear Family Priority Act will end chain migration for extended families. While most countries prioritize immigrants who have skills, America gives preference to family reunification including adult parents and siblings.
In 2009, the U.S. issued over 1.1 million permanent legal visas and nearly one million temporary work visas despite growing unemployment. The GOP leadership stood against many of the pro-amnesty and anti-enforcement activities by the Obama Administration and Democrat Congress. We can thank Republicans for exposing Obama’s attempt at amnesty via executive order and stopping the DREAM Act amnesty. When Republicans take back Congress, voters will expect them to do more than just stop bad bills; but also take proactive steps to secure our borders, enforce our laws, and stop the flood of foreign workers.
(“Real Comprehensive Immigration Reform” by Virgil Goode dated October 19, 2010 published by Town Hall at http://townhall.com/columnists/VirgilGoode/2010/10/18/real_comprehensive_immigration_reform )
Black people who diligently vote for Democrats are intellectual slaves to the liberal agenda, inasmuch as they, for the most part, are ignorant of the history of the Democratic Party and vote for policies that harm their communities. It is only a black intellectual slave who can observe the impact of liberal policies on the black community without having a scintilla of unease about pulling the lever for Democrats -- election after election. Democrats continue to actively perpetuate insidious policies that keep blacks on the lowest rung of the socioeconomic totem pole. Socialism is nothing more than a deceitful left-wing farce that inherently creates a super-exclusive oligarchy under the laughable guise of egalitarianism. Only mass intellectual serfdom in the black community can present an adequate explanation as to why the myth of "Benevolent Big Government" continues to prevail -- and why the black vote is almost monolithically given to the Democrats. A basic rule of economics is that if you want more of an activity, you subsidize it, and if you want less of an activity, you heavily tax it. Sadly, what Democrats have been doing for decades is subsidizing every bad action of impoverished blacks. The most deplorable example of this is the exponential rise in the illegitimacy rate that came as a result of its liberal subsidization. The subsidization of illegitimacy poses all sorts of problems for the black community, including stymied economic progress, dismantling of the black family, low IQs in children, high dropout rates, and crime. As a result of the Democrats' "well-intentioned" welfare policies, we now have a 70% illegitimacy rate in the black community, which will likely increase if the largesse of Big Government is not stopped. Democrats have successfully addicted black liberals to the crack cocaine of government aid, so like any addict, black liberals keep coming back to the voting booth and pulling the lever for everything with a (D) after its name so they can get that next fix of Uncle Sam's free money. It's been nearly fifty years of failed Democrat policies, and all black intellectual slaves have to show for their decades of cultish allegiance to liberals is worsened poverty, a broken family structure, failing schools, massive black genocide via abortion, run-down communities, perennial joblessness, and almost every other social malady that can be imagined. Black liberals are suffering from political Stockholm syndrome. The need for Democrat cross-burning in order to keep blacks in the underclass is over. Democrats have succeeded in creating black intellectual serfs who are so swayed by the blandishments of Big Government and the empty anti-capitalist rhetoric of the left that they don't even realize they've been hoodwinked by some of the biggest beneficiaries of capitalism! The black community's allegiance to Democrats is among the most shameful political facts in American history, and it can be ended only by the articulation of a true conservative message from passionate, intrepid, and ethnically diverse messengers.
(“The Liberal Elite and Black Intellectual Serfdom” by Chidike Okeem dated October 20, 2010 published by American Thinker at http://www.americanthinker.com/2010/10/the_liberal_elite_and_black_in.html )
Just in case you have not heard the news, Barack Obama, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi are gearing up for the mother of all battles just after the election in the lame duck Congress. They know that the American people are about to go to the polls and hand them a massive repudiation of their left-wing agenda, and they’re not happy. Refusing to accept defeat, these three are planning a counter attack. Instead of taking to heart the unmistakable message of the American people, they’re moving, full steam ahead, in the opposite direction. Digging in with unprecedented and arrogant defiance, they’ve planned a legislative blitzkrieg during the coming lame-duck session of Congress in order to shove as much of their radical agenda, as humanly possible, down your throat before the new Congressmen and Senators can be sworn into office. If Obama cannot get his legislative agenda enacted by the lame-duck Congress, he will impose it by decree. As President Obama remakes his senior staff, he is also shaping a new approach for the second half of his term: to advance his agenda through executive actions he can take on his own, rather than pushing plans through an increasingly hostile Congress. This rule by edict is confirmed by Obama strategist David Axelrod said, “It’s fair to say that the next phase is going to be less about legislative action than it is about managing the change that we’ve brought.” Obama believes that the best arena to execute his plans may be his own branch of government meaning more executive orders, more use of the bully pulpit, and more deployment of his ample regulatory powers and the wide-ranging rulemaking authority of his Cabinet members. Congressional Republicans have accurately called the regulations “job-killers.” Now it looks as though the President will ignore the Republicans and the will of the voters. Obama plans to ram his agenda down the American people’s throats “by any means necessary” and will ignore the wants and needs of his constituents.
(“Obama’s Post-Election Attack Plan” by Floyd and Mary Brown dated October 19, 2010 published by Front Page Magazine at http://frontpagemag.com/2010/10/19/obamas-post-election-attack/ )
* 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. Updates have been made this week to the following issue sections:
· Foreign Policy at http://www.returntocommonsensesite.com/fp/philosophy.php