Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

This blog is devoted to a variety of topics including politics, current events, legal issues, and we even take the time to have some occasional fun. After all, blogging is about having a little fun, right?

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A little housekeeping

Regular readers know that my lovely wife and I were constant and consistent bloggers. When she finished her undergrad degree and moved onto law school, the blogging fell into my lap to handle. I did a pretty good job on my own. (I was blogging before she was, so it really wasn't that difficult to do solo blogging again.) But law school is done for her, and she took the Bar Exam last month. I'm crossing my fingers she passed it first time through.

So what does this have to do with the site? Well, let's just say that the blogging will be infrequent from this point forward. I'm working on a personal project, a novel specifically. The novel idea has been rattling around my cob-web-filled skull for the last twenty years, and I made a promise to myself this year to get on the stick and write it finally. As of today I'm just over 220 pages into it, and I'm shooting for between 500 and 600 pages, and hopefully about 100,000 to 200,000 words.

Thus far it's been fun. A ton of research has gone into this novel. I have easily done as much research for this book as I have done as a blogger. The difference comes in what exactly is being researched. My novel is a thriller a la Vince Flynn and Daniel Silva, so there's research on firearms, countries, certain intelligence agencies and how they work, and Washington, DC. (The novel takes place in DC.) So, if everything goes as planned, I'm hoping to be shopping this around to publishing houses by summer of 2011. Once the rough draft is finished, then it's time for some proof-reading, polishing, and fine-tuning. (There are also considerable hoops I've got to jump through to prepare the manuscript for a publishing house.)

But this is why the blogging here has dropped significantly in the last few weeks. I just don't have the time to do it day-in and day-out while I'm working on this. I will say that if I do have a few minutes to post something up, it'll be on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, or Friday. Those are the days that I actually have extra time, usually late mornings, when I'm not at work or working on the novel.

My apologies to our regular readers, but I decided it was time to get this done. Twenty years is long enough to put this off, and I'm not getting any younger.

Publius II

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

NRO editors on the Ground Zero mosque

When this was first presented, I thought it was a political hoax, or a joke cooked up by some nutter in New York. But it's a reality, and it's a reality we're 100% opposed to. We're not opposed to a religion being allowed to build a church, but Ground Zero is hallowed ground. We wouldn't support ANY religion putting up a church at Ground Zero. We would stand against any sort of inappropriate display or building on any ground in America that is considered hallowed. (After all, we believe the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II, but there's no way in Hell we'd support any sort of display at the USS Arizona memorial in Hawaii "commemorating" that brain-dead decision. We also wouldn't support the Ku Klux Klan erecting any sort of memorial at Gettysburg.)

Point being, there's a level of respect that is due at places like Ground Zero. Over at National Review, the editors have penned a piece on this issue:

The story of the proposed mosque at the site of the World Trade Center has been thoroughly misrepresented, as have the parties behind the project. They present themselves as ambassadors of moderate Islam. Daisy Khan, executive director of the American Society for Muslim Advancement, says the project aims to put the Muslim community “at the front and center to start the healing.”

Ms. Khan knows better, because she is also Mrs. Feisal Abdul Rauf, the wife of the main Islamic cleric behind the project. Rauf is no moderate. He presents himself as a peacemaking Islamic Gandhi, but he is in fact an apologist for the terrorist outfit Hamas, which he refuses even to identify as a terrorist organization. Nor is Rauf exactly full-throated in his rejection of terrorism, offering only this: “The issue of terrorism is a very complex question.” While he cannot quite bring himself to blame the terrorists for being terrorists, he finds it easy to blame the United States for being a victim of terrorism: “I wouldn’t say that the United States deserved what happened, but the United States policies were an accessory to the crime that happened.”

As National Review’s Andrew C. McCarthy has documented, Rauf’s book, published in the West as What’s Right with Islam Is What’s Right with America, had a significantly different title abroad: A Call to Prayer from the World Trade Center Rubble: Islamic Dawa in the Heart of America Post-9/11. “Dawa” means Islamic proselytizing, a process that ends in the imposition of sharia. The book was published abroad with the assistance of the Islamic Society of North America and the International Institute of Islamic Thought, which are two appendages of the Muslim Brotherhood, an organization behind much of the world’s murderous Islamic terrorism. The Islamic Society of North America was identified as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation terrorism case. The co-founder and president of the International Institute of Islamic Thought, Shaykh Taha Jabir al-Awani, was an unindicted co-conspirator in the Sami al-Arian terrorism case.

This dispute has been presented as a question of whether an Islamic center and mosque should be built in proximity to the scene of the worst act of Islamic terrorism — and the worst act of political violence — ever committed on U.S. soil. But at least as germane to the dispute is the question of whether these particular parties ought to be doing so. The fact that an apologist for terrorists and an associate of terrorist-allied organizations is proceeding with this provocation is indecent. We have thousands of mosques in the United States, and who knows how many Islamic cultural centers in New York City. We do not need this one, in this place, built by these people. We’re all stocked up on Hamas apologists, thanks very much.

The libertarians among us are wrong to take a blasé attitude toward this, asking, “If their permit applications are in order, why not?” Here is why not: because this is not just a zoning dispute. The World Trade Center is, in effect, the gravesite of 3,000 Americans who died at the hands of Islamist radicals, and to build a mosque on this site — particularly a mosque with Muslim Brotherhood connections — would be extraordinarily unseemly. We will not appeal to the official powers to use the machinery of government to stop this project. We appeal, instead, to the sense of decency of the American Muslim community, and to its patriotism.

Beyond that, Americans should make their displeasure with this project felt economically and socially: No contractor, construction company, or building-trades union that accepts a dime of the Cordoba Initiative’s money should be given a free pass—nobody who sells them so much as a nail, or a hammer to drive it in with. This is an occasion for boycotts and vigorous protests — and, above all, for bringing down a well-deserved shower of shame upon those involved with this project, and on those politicians who have meekly gone along with it. It is an indecent proposal and an intentional provocation.

That is our overall gripe. The fact that they want it so close to Ground Zero is an affront to this nation, and every American should lodge their formal complaints to the companies involved in its construction. We don't support boycotts because they generally don't work. But in this instance we do support a boycott, including a boycott of New York City. The asininity involved in this decision is astronomical. If those on the Landmark Commission are elected, we hope New York residents boot them from office. If they're appointed by Mayor Bloomberg, then Bloomberg should be ousted. (He is for the mosque being built; such is the life of a disrespectful ass. Giuliani would never have allowed this mosque to go through.)

The fact that this mosque's construction will be funded by Muslim Brotherhood blood money is sickening. This is how the leaders of Islam now are acting. The moderates don't have a voice in Islam. They're shunned, or worse, silenced. The radicals are the ones in charge now, and while they can offer empty platitudes about how this will help "heal the wounds," it's a lie. They will be celebrating their mosque's construction just two short blocks from the most sanctified, honored ground in the entire nation. And readers will kindly recall that this is not the first time hallowed ground has been tainted. The United 93 memorial in Shanksville, PA drew significant ire and controversy with its shape (a red crescent) and alignment (in direct alignment with Mecca).

The terrorist apologists will stop at nothing when it comes to infiltrating this name, and every time we give in, it's a victory for them. For the last time, repeat after me: Lan Astalem -- I will not submit! Enough is enough. We live in a nation where we are being ruled by the minority, and their leadership (if you could call it that) is extremely detrimental to this great republic. It's time to get rid of the politically-correct @$$holes, and take this nation -- it's identity, it's ideals, and it's values -- back from these people who seem intent on wrecking everything good about America. The Landmark Commission should be ashamed for clearing the way for this Muslim front group to erect a mosque so close to Ground Zero.

This will not help "heal" squat. It'll only serve to continue the animosity towards a group of people who can't seem to figure out how to drag their 7th Century, anachronistic asses into the 21st Century.

Publius II

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

House outlook for midterms: Pelosi would be smart to worry

The midterm elections are less than 100 days away, but in an interview on This Week with Christiane Amanpour Nancy Pelosi says she's not nervous about the upcoming election:

In an exclusive interview on "This Week with Christiane Amanpour," Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., struck a confident tone on the electoral prospects for Democrats this November, despite predictions by many, including at least one top White House official, that Democrats could lose control of the House.

"I'm not nervous at all," Pelosi said. "I never take anything for granted. And our agenda now is ... we're not going back to the failed policies of the Bush administration. We're going forward," she said.

"So what does it make you feel then, when the president's own spokesman said that you might lose the majority?" Amanpour asked her.

"With all due respect," Pelosi shot back, "I don't spend a whole lot of time thinking about what the president's employees say about one thing or another."

She's not nervous, but many of her colleagues are. Captain Ed points to recent pieces written on The Rothenberg Political Report. For example, there's this assessment written by Mr. Rothenberg:

Democrats now hold a 39-seat edge in the House. Yet the playing field continues to expand: The Rothenberg Political Report currently lists 88 seats as “in play.” Seventy-six of those seats currently are held by Democrats.

Many of the same places that helped build the president’s winning coalition in his race against Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. — states such as Ohio, Indiana, Virginia, and Pennsylvania — could be the places where Republicans rack up the gains they need to take back the House.

In many of those districts, the Obama agenda has been widely unpopular. House members are left defending votes on items including the stimulus, bailouts, health care and cap-and-trade that have grown more unpopular with the passage of time.

It means that the president and his agenda will very much be on the ballot — while the president himself won’t be the best position to help Democrats play defense.

I said in January of last year that if the Democrats led as moderates, and kept their hard-Left ideology in check, they'd be successful come the 2010 midterms, and the 2012 election. I warned that if it wasn't kept in check, the people of America would do their best to bounce the problems from office. And no one can deny that the Democrats and their agenda is a problem. It's a serious one because they haven't addressed the problems facing the nation. They've exacerbated the recession, spent the nation into trillions of dollars in debt, and they've engaged in thuggish tactics that would've made Al Capone jealous.

Let’s be clear about where we all would be if unemployment were actually at 4 percent right now.

Most of the hand-wringing about jobs and the economy would be gone, stronger employment numbers would mean a more vibrant economy (which almost certainly would mean higher federal and state revenues and lower deficits) and polling undoubtedly would show the president with better numbers, Congress with a higher approval rating and the Democratic Party more popular than it is now. Because of that, the huge enthusiasm gap that now exists and is likely to fuel GOP gains in November would be much smaller or nonexistent. …

Actions, indeed, do have consequences. In this case, the combination of an aggressive Democratic agenda, a weak jobs recovery and a large deficit has created a political environment very different from the one 18 months ago, when Democrats won a special election in New York’s open 20th district by demonizing Republicans for waffling on, then opposing, Obama’s economic stimulus plan.

It’s very difficult to imagine Republican gains in the House of fewer than two dozen seats, and my own newsletter, after going race by race, recently placed likely GOP gains in the range of 28 to 33 seats, if not higher.

The nation has been waiting to see if the adults will step forward and deal with the economic problems we're facing, but they haven't. The children are still behind the wheel of dad's car with an open bottle of Jack Daniels held between their knees. The unemployment numbers haven't eased, and it's taken shady practices to make people think that the employment situation is getting better. (That was revealed when temporary Census workers reported being hired, then laid off, then rehired again, skewing the numbers for a couple of months leading up to summer.) The Democrats haven't taken care of our economic woes.

Instead of spending us into oblivion, the Democrats could have easily written themselves a ticket to success by lowering tax rates across the board, and suspending all non-essential government spending. Hell, if they really wanted to turn the economy around in record time, that would help, but a tax holiday for small businesses for a year would have greatly improved the economic situation in America.

But the Democrats couldn't set aside their ideology long enough to do what was right. As was revealed back in February of last year, the Democrats had a forty year wish-list that they wanted to implement immediately. Their own selfish desires for power and control have brought reality to their doorstep, and a lot of them are going to lose their jobs this fall. The House appears to be a lock, with the GOP taking as many as forty seats. The Senate isn't as rock solid, but the GOP will make some significant gains there.

And what are the Democrats going to do after the bloodbath in November? The rumors on Capitol Hill is that in their lame duck session, they're going to do their damnedest to ram through everything they couldn't get passed earlier such as cap and trade and card check. The small coalition of Blue Dogs in the House begging the president to back an initiative to extend President Bush's tax cuts beyond 31 December of this year lack the clout to push for the move. Pelosi has no desire to extend those tax cuts. The quote above in her interview proves it. She's blaming Bush, just like Barry does.

The simple fact is that the Democrats are obviously too stupid to figure out where they went wrong, and they're too bloody arrogant to admit they were wrong. Mr. Rothenberg finishes up with more wisdom, and reasoned analysis, than the Democrats (especially Nancy Pelosi) will ever come up with:

The House surely is at great risk, and anyone who asserts that Democrats are certain to maintain their majority after November is simply not worth listening to on the subject. The trajectory of this election cycle is clear. But don’t delude yourself. It didn’t have to be this way.

Hammer. Nail. Head. 'Nuff said.

Publius II

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Dennis Prager on why the Left hates conservatives

I've often considered writing such a piece myself, but every time I begin it, I always notice that I just don't quite put it the right way. I know the Left despises conservatives for a whole host of reasons but Dennis Prager puts it succinctly today at National Review. (And before any liberal readers go off half-cocked on this column please remember that Mr. Prager always speaks in generalities. Of course not every liberal shares this same hatred of conservatives, but the vast majority do.):

Of all the recent revelations to come out of JournoList, an e-mail list consisting of about 400 liberal/left journalists, perhaps the most telling is the depth of their hatred for conservatives. That these journalists would consult with one another in order to protect candidate and then President Obama and in order to hurt Republicans is unfortunate and ugly. What is jolting is the hatred of conservatives on display, as exemplified by the e-mail from a public-radio reporter expressing her wish to personally see Rush Limbaugh die a painful death — and the apparent absence of any objection from her fellow liberal journalists.

Every one of us on the right has seen this hatred. I am not referring to leftist bloggers or to anonymous comments by angry leftists on conservative blogs — such things exist on the right as well — but to mainstream, elite liberal journalists. There is simply nothing analogous among elite conservative journalists. Yes, nearly all conservatives believe that the Left is leading America to ruin. But while there is plenty of conservative anger over this fact, there is little or nothing on the right to match the Left’s hatred of conservative individuals. Would mainstream conservative journalists e-mail one another wishes that they could be present while Harry Reid or Nancy Pelosi or Michael Moore died slowly and painfully of a heart attack?

From Karl Marx to today, the Left has always hated people of the Right, not merely differed or been angry with them. The question is, why?

Here are three possible answers.

First, the Left thinks the Right is evil. Granting the exceptions that all generalizations allow for, conservatives believe that those on the left are wrong, while those on the left believe that those on the right are bad. Examples are innumerable. Howard Dean, the former head of the Democratic party, said, “In contradistinction to the Republicans, Democrats don’t believe kids ought to go to bed hungry at night.” Rep. Alan Grayson (D., Fla.), among many similar comments, said, “I want to say a few words about what it means to be a Democrat. It’s very simple: We have a conscience.” ...

Second, when you don’t confront real evil, you hate those who do. You can see this on almost any school playground. The kid who confronts the school bully is often resented more than the bully. Whether out of guilt over their own cowardice or out of fear that the one who confronted the bully will provoke the bully to lash out more, those who refuse to confront the bully often resent the one who does. During the 1980s, the Left expressed far more hatred for Ronald Reagan than for Soviet Communist dictator Leonid Brezhnev. When Reagan labeled the Soviet Union an “evil empire,” the liberal world was enraged . . . at Reagan. ...

Third, the Left’s utopian vision is prevented only by the Right.

From its inception, leftism has been a secular utopian religion. As Ted Kennedy, paraphrasing his brother Robert F. Kennedy, said, “Some men see things as they are and say, Why? I dream things that never were and say, Why not?” That exemplifies left-wing idealism — imagining a utopian future. There will be no poor, no war, no conflict, no inequality. That future is only a few more government programs away from reality. And who stands in the way of such perfection? Conservatives. How could a utopian not hate a conservative?

This hatred will only increase if the Left feels its programs to greatly increase the size of government are in any way threatened in the forthcoming elections. The problem is that this hatred does not decrease when the Left is in power.

Hatred of conservatives is so much a part of the Left that the day the Left stops hating conservatives will mark the beginning of the end of the Left as we know it.

Mr. Prager is more correct than people will give him credit for. The simple fact of the matter is that we conservatives utilize logic, intellect, common sense, and a real-world understanding to motivate our ideology. Whereas the Left will claim we want to see people starve when we stand in opposition to an increase in welfare or jobless benefits, we argue that it would be more beneficial to help employ those people, and ease their tax burdens. Give a tax break to small businesses (America's bread-and-butter when it comes to employment), and that employer can hire more workers, employing more people, and instilling personal responsibility. But the Left doesn't like that idea so they throw up an emotional straw man filled with the idea that people would rather have a hand-out than work an honest day's work for an honest day's wage. On this point there is reinforcement.

In his autobiography "An American Life" Ronald Reagan wrote about the work he did helping unemployed people during the Great Depression. He noted that when he found the people he was helping work, they stood a little taller, felt pride in doing work. But the person who oversaw what he was doing scolded him to stop helping these people. Just give them their unemployment check, and send them on their way. Reagan knew then as we do now that a man takes pride in the work he does, takes pride in being able to provide for his family. A man who is given a hand-out feels no pride. In fact, as my grandfather used to tell me "That which is given has no value." He was right.

The Left thrives on emotion. It is an adolescent emotion that has morphed into an ideology that is a detriment to any free society. They believe in a larger, more intrusive government. They abhor the idea of personal responsibility. When it comes to defense, they're more apt to point the finger at America and blame it for the ills and gripes of others.

The very worst of liberalism is embodied in the current president. Barry has exhibited every pratfall of liberalism to the point where the public is genuinely outraged at much of what he has done, and they abhor him for his general attitude towards this nation. He takes no pride in the fact that America is a "shining city on a hill;" an embodiment of freedom and democracy that the world always looks to. And his cronies in Congress are no better. Radical liberals like Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi are the cause of the lack of faith in Congress amongst the voting populace. Captain Ed reported on 8 July that congressional approval had hit a first time low of 95 -- the first time Congress's approval dropped to single digits. Who controls Congress? The Left does.

When the Left gets their way, the people aren't pleased. America is a center-right nation, not a hard Left nation. Therein lies the problem for liberals this coming November. The voting public is going to throw these bums out in the hopes that the GOP can do better. I don't know if that'll work, but right now anything is better than handing the Left the car keys after a year and a half of binge drinking. Make no mistake, they're drunk on power, and it's already evident in the rhetoric coming out of them now. The Left has said after they lose in November, before the GOP takes back the reins of power, that their lame-duck session is going to be one jam-packed with everything they couldn't get passed in the last 18 months. Rather than listen to the people, they're content to move forward -- full speed ahead and damn the torpedoes, and damn the nation for retaliating against them.

Elections have consequences, and the people would be better suited to remember that before leaping off the cliff with the rest of the lemmings.

Publius II

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

JournoList Part Two -- Gag FOX News, and bias against the Tea Party movement

Yesterday, Jonathan Strong revealed the JournoList discussion of how the media insulated Barry from the Jeremiah Wright controversy. I know I was snarky when I said that he was pointing out the obvious, but what was interesting about his piece was how quickly the media circled the wagons in an orchestrated effort to protect their candidate of choice. Today, Mr. Strong points out that many big names in the media debated over whether or not the government should take control of FOX News:

The very existence of Fox News, meanwhile, sends Journolisters into paroxysms of rage. When Howell Raines charged that the network had a conservative bias, the members of Journolist discussed whether the federal government should shut the channel down.

“I am genuinely scared” of Fox, wrote Guardian columnist Daniel Davies, because it “shows you that a genuinely shameless and unethical media organisation *cannot* be controlled by any form of peer pressure or self-regulation, and nor can it be successfully cold-shouldered or ostracised.
In order to have even a semblance of control, you need a tough legal framework.” Davies, a Brit, frequently argued the United States needed stricter libel laws.

“I agree,” said Michael Scherer of Time Magazine. Roger “
Ailes understands that his job is to build a tribal identity, not a news organization. You can’t hurt Fox by saying it gets it wrong, if Ailes just uses the criticism to deepen the tribal identity.”

Jonathan Zasloff, a law professor at UCLA, suggested that the federal government simply yank Fox off the air.
“I hate to open this can of worms,” he wrote, “but is there any reason why the FCC couldn’t simply pull their broadcasting permit once it expires?”

And so a debate ensued. Time’s Scherer, who had seemed to express support for increased regulation of Fox, suddenly appeared to have qualms:
“Do you really want the political parties/white house picking which media operations are news operations and which are a less respectable hybrid of news and political advocacy?”

But Zasloff stuck to his position. “
I think that they are doing that anyway; they leak to whom they want to for political purposes,” he wrote. “If this means that some White House reporters don’t get a press pass for the press secretary’s daily briefing and that this means that they actually have to, you know, do some reporting and analysis instead of repeating press releases, then I’ll take that risk.”

Scherer seemed alarmed. “So we would have press briefings in which only media organizations that are deemed by the briefer to be acceptable are invited to attend?”

John Judis, a senior editor at the New Republic, came down on Zasloff’s side, the side of censorship. “Pre-Fox,” he wrote, “I’d say Scherer’s questions made sense as a question of principle.
Now it is only tactical.

Now, is anyone surprised by this discussion, open and candid, amongst journalists? It shouldn't. the alphabet networks and the mainstream news industry have been attacking FOX News since it first took to the cable airwaves. And it has consistently decimated the other cable news networks. At this point in time, MSNBC resembles Air America in its death throes. Their commentators are partisan jokes that no one with a brain takes seriously, and their bias is so evident that it's laughable to think these people still claim to be unbiased news observers, commentators, and reporters.

As for pulling FOX's license, I'm not too sure that would be possible because, as Captain Ed points out in his piece on this topic today FOX may not have an FCC license:

I’m actually unclear on whether Fox News has an FCC license, since it uses satellite transmission rather than actual broadcast through local affiliates. Usually, it’s the affiliates themselves that have to get the licenses, not the network whose content they broadcast, and Fox News doesn’t use traditional TV stations for its content. But that’s a more esoteric point. The point is that Zasloff has no trouble letting government determine whether a news organization should be allowed to publish, apparently based on nothing more than its discomfort with the news itself. Not only does this sound as though Zasloff needs a refresher course on Constitutional law and free speech, it also sounds like an endorsement for fascism, in which governments pick and choose which businesses are allowed to exist based on their level of cooperation with the government.

And speaking of fascism, early on in Mr. Strong's piece he cites Bloomberg's Ryan Donmoyer and his illiteracy when it comes to history when comparing events to the Tea Party movement:

In the summer of 2009, agitated citizens from across the country flocked to town hall meetings to berate lawmakers who had declared support for President Obama’s health care bill. For most people, the protests seemed like an exercise in participatory democracy, rowdy as some of them became.

On Journolist, the question was whether the protestors were garden-variety fascists or actual Nazis.

“You know, at the risk of violating Godwin’s law, is anyone starting to see parallels here between the teabaggers and their tactics and the rise of the Brownshirts?” asked Bloomberg’s Ryan Donmoyer. “Esp. Now that it’s getting violent? Reminds me of the Beer Hall fracases of the 1920s.”

Quick history lesson for Mr. Donmoyer: The Brownshirts were the SA, the precursor to the SS, and were so named because of their uniform. Once the SS was established, it quickly pushed the SA (Brownshirts) out of power. And the point behind their creation was to sweep national socialists into power under the leadership of Adolf Hitler. The Tea Party movement is comprised of everyday, average America citizens that aren't pleased with the direction the federal government is going in, they're not happy with the fact their elected representatives aren't listening to them, and they're appalled at the intense and swift growth of government intervention in their lives.

The Tea Party movement wasn't established to commit a coup by election, as the Nazis had been. The movement was established to send a message to Washington, DC to knock off their crap, and listen to the people, and the movement promised repercussions in the midterms if their voice wasn't heeded. And if you've been watching the polls, they're telling a story of a political bloodbath in November. Do I believe the prognostications that are claiming this will be a sweeping victory for the GOP? I take such predictions with a grain of salt.

Is there a chance that the GOP could take the House back? Yes, a very good one, and even Democrats are admitting it. The House is divided with 257 seats controlled by Democrats and 178 seats controlled by the Republicans. The GOP only needs 39 seats to take the majority. So it is a distinct possibility the GOP could retake the House. The Senate is separated by nine votes, and it could also be taken from the Democrats. When the party in charge is the focus of the voter's ire, the voters will take their frustration out on that party. The Tea Party is hardly a putsch, and it's offensive that a journalist would even make such an equivocation.

Publius II

New Quinnipiac numbers; things trending down for Barry

And the hits just keep on coming, folks. Quinnipiac has released some interesting numbers today that show Barry, if he runs in 2012, could very well lose to any Republican, named or otherwise:

A year after President Barack Obama's political honeymoon ended, his job approval rating has dropped to a negative 44 - 48 percent, his worst net score ever, and American voters say by a narrow 39 - 36 percent margin that they would vote for an unnamed Republican rather than President Obama in 2012, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

This compares to a 48 - 43 percent approval for Obama in a May 26 national poll by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University and a 57 - 33 percent approval last July, just before the political firestorm created by opposition to his health care plan galvanized political opponents and turned independent voters against him.

In this latest survey of more than 2,000 voters, independent voters disapprove of Obama 52 - 38 percent and say 37 - 27 percent they would vote for a Republican contender in 2012.

American voters also say 48 - 40 percent Obama does not deserve reelection in 2012.

Anti-incumbent sentiment slams both parties as voters disapprove 59 - 31 percent of the job Democrats are doing, and disapprove 59 - 29 percent of Republicans in Congress. But voters say 43 - 38 percent they would vote for a Republican in a generic Congressional race.

American voters say 42 - 32 percent that Obama has been a better president than George W. Bush, similar to the 43 - 30 percent who felt that way in January of 2010.

"It was a year ago, during the summer of 2009 that America's love affair with President Barack Obama began to wane. In July of 2009, the President had a 57 - 33 percent approval rating. Today, his support among Democrats remains strong, but the disillusionment among independent voters, who dropped from 52 - 37 percent approval to 52 - 38 percent disapproval in the last 12 months, is what leads to his weakness overall when voters start thinking about 2012," said Peter A. Brown., assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"In politics a month is a lifetime and we have 28 months until November of 2012. But politicians with re-elect numbers at 40 percent bear watching," Brown added. ...

"The Republican tilt of the electorate little more than 100 days before the 2010 election is evident, but not overwhelming. Republicans hold a 43 - 38 percent lead on the 'generic ballot,' compared to a 42 - 34 percent Democratic lead in July 2009," said Brown. "What a difference a year makes."

Voter approval of the President's handling of some of the nation's problems shows:

-- Disapprove 56 - 39 percent of his handling of the economy;

-- Disapprove 46 - 43 percent of his handling of foreign policy;

-- Disapprove 51 - 41 percent of his handling of the Gulf of Mexico oil spill;

-- Disapprove 58 - 30 percent of his handling of illegal immigration;

-- Approve 46 - 34 percent of his nomination of Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court.

"The massive disapproval of his handling of illegal immigration stems from voter opposition to his decision to have the government ask the federal courts to throw out the Arizona law. They say 60 - 28 percent the lawsuit is a bad idea," said Brown.

Bear in mind that we still have just over two years before 2012, but the fact remains that Barry has dropped like a rock the longer he has been in office. The "hope" and "change" from 2008 is gone, the honeymoon is over, and he's honked off the number one constituency that put him over the top. I know there are prognosticators that claim it was minorities that put him over the top, but they're wrong. The Independent voter was the key to the whole election, and after the health care debacle back in March, where an overwhelming majority of Americans did not want to see it passed after they learned what it entailed, the Independents walked away from Barry and haven't looked back since.

This is why Quinnipiac is focused on the Independent's disillusionment with him. They bought his crap, hook, line, and sinker. A year after Barry was inaugurated we're sick of hearing from these people about how they were duped. Know why we're sick of hearing this whining and complaining?


This schmuck hasn't even run a bloody lemonade stand, and we listened to so many people during the election speak of their hopes and dreams for this man. Well, guess what? You were played like a harp from Hell. The Pied Piper strutted on in from Chicago, and the rats lined up to follow him. Only they look less like rats and more like lemmings running right off of a cliff.

Of course, thanks to the "One-Party Media" covering Barry's @$$ in 2008 these voters were "misinformed" or not privy to what we knew. I mean, let's face facts folks: Unless you spend a decent amount of time on the Internet each day, or unless you listen to talk radio throughout your day, you aren't going to get the full story on ANY issue from today's media outlets if the journalists don't want you to know about it. The media quashed any and all stories regarding Jeremiah Wright in 2008, and George Stephanopoulos and Charlie Gibson were rebuked by their fellow journalists for even broaching the subject with Barry. (In their colleague's eyes, it was beyond the pale to even bring it up in a presidential debate.)

Chances are you won't hear too much about this poll today, and you sure as Hell won't see it anywhere in the media. 2010 is on everyone's mind right now, and it should be. The 2012 race won't even begin to heat up until after the midterms as GOP contenders jockey for position and file their paperwork. Our focus now should be in getting rid of as many Democrats in Congress as possible in an attempt to take back the Congress. I'm not going to get into a tit-for-tat argument over which House of Congress is more important to retake. They both have their respective power, and the necessity to wrestle control away from the Democrats is imperative this year. Furthermore, the Republicans need to promise, and carry through on the promise, to rollback as much of the president's radical agenda as they can starting with Obamacare. In fact, the Republicans need to campaign on easing the tax burden on the American worker and on American companies to try and bring us out of this recession. Additionally they need to stand in firm, lock-step opposition to raising the national deficit anymore than it already is until this recession is over.

But regardless of who runs in 2012, we seriously don't see a scenario where Barry is anything more than a Jimmy Carter redux, in and out in four years.

Publius II

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

JournoList scandal: Pointing out the obvious

For those that don't know what JournoList is, it's a Google Groups forum for the media to discuss politics and current events. It was Mickey Kaus that broke the story behind JournoList, and put up on his blog a public discussion on the site. The public got an inside look at the media and their inherent liberal bias. It created a firestorm that came and went within a week or two. Today, Jonathan Strong from the Daily Caller exposes just part of the lengths the media went through to protect their golden child, Barry, in the 2008 primaries and the general election: (HT to Glenn Reynolds)

It was the moment of greatest peril for then-Sen. Barack Obama’s political career. In the heat of the presidential campaign, videos surfaced of Obama’s pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, angrily denouncing whites, the U.S. government and America itself. Obama had once bragged of his closeness to Wright. Now the black nationalist preacher’s rhetoric was threatening to torpedo Obama’s campaign.

The crisis reached a howling pitch in mid-April, 2008, at an ABC News debate moderated by Charlie Gibson and George Stephanopoulos. Gibson asked Obama why it had taken him so long – nearly a year since Wright’s remarks became public – to dissociate himself from them. Stephanopoulos asked, “Do you think Reverend Wright loves America as much as you do?”

Watching this all at home were members of Journolist, a listserv comprised of several hundred liberal journalists, as well as like-minded professors and activists. The tough questioning from the ABC anchors left many of them outraged. “George [Stephanopoulos],” fumed Richard Kim of the Nation, is “being a disgusting little rat snake.”

Others went further. According to records obtained by The Daily Caller, at several points during the 2008 presidential campaign a group of liberal journalists took radical steps to protect their favored candidate. Employees of news organizations including Time, Politico, the Huffington Post, the Baltimore Sun, the Guardian, Salon and the New Republic participated in outpourings of anger over how Obama had been treated in the media, and in some cases plotted to fix the damage.

In one instance, Spencer Ackerman of the Washington Independent urged his colleagues to deflect attention from Obama’s relationship with Wright by changing the subject. Pick one of Obama’s conservative critics, Ackerman wrote, “Fred Barnes, Karl Rove, who cares — and call them racists.”

Michael Tomasky, a writer for the Guardian, also tried to rally his fellow members of Journolist: “Listen folks–in my opinion, we all have to do what we can to kill ABC and this idiocy in whatever venues we have. This isn’t about defending Obama. This is about how the [mainstream media] kills any chance of discourse that actually serves the people.”

“Richard Kim got this right above: ‘a horrible glimpse of general election press strategy.’ He’s dead on,” Tomasky continued. “We need to throw chairs now, try as hard as we can to get the call next time. Otherwise the questions in October will be exactly like this. This is just a disease.”

(In an interview Monday, Tomasky defended his position, calling the ABC debate an example of shoddy journalism.)

Thomas Schaller, a columnist for the Baltimore Sun as well as a political science professor, upped the ante from there. In a post with the subject header, “why don’t we use the power of this list to do something about the debate?” Schaller proposed coordinating a “smart statement expressing disgust” at the questions Gibson and Stephanopoulos had posed to Obama.

“It would create quite a stir, I bet, and be a warning against future behavior of the sort,” Schaller wrote.

Tomasky approved. “YES. A thousand times yes,” he exclaimed.

The members began collaborating on their open letter. Jonathan Stein of Mother Jones rejected an early draft, saying, “I’d say too short. In my opinion, it doesn’t go far enough in highlighting the inanity of some of [Gibson's] and [Stephanopoulos’s] questions. And it doesn’t point out their factual inaccuracies …Our friends at Media Matters probably have tons of experience with this sort of thing, if we want their input.”

As Professor Reynolds urges, read it all. It's three pages long, and it's eye-opening to those who still think the media is an unbiased observer/reporter of the news of the day. They're not, folks. They haven't been ever since the day that Walter Duranty whitewashed Stalin's atrocities in the Soviet Union. It continued through Walter Kronkite's days as a biased journalist, and up through Dan Rather who was made infamous for his story about President Bush's service in the Texas Air National Guard, informally dubbed "Rathergate."

(The "th" superscripted in the scandal's title refers to the "th" in the Killian memo denoting the 187th fighter wing that Bush was a member of. The "th" in 187th was superscripted; a task unable to be done on typewriters of the day, and required a different typewriter for that sort of feature that Killian's secretary said he never would have used for such a compartmentalized memo.)

In short, Mr. Strong is revealing nothing more than what we already knew. The media is biased. They can't deny it, and they can't even explain it. In numerous interviews with journalists, Hugh Hewitt has consistently asked those reporters if there is a bias in the media. By an overwhelming majority, they tell him there is, and it's to the liberal side of the issues/ideology.

Are all media outlets included in this? Yes they are, even FOX News. Ywes, even FOX News has its ideological liberals. The difference between them and others is that they still present a balanced approach to news commentary, and when they report the news they do so as journalist of old did -- Report the facts, and let the viewer/listener determine the truth or veracity of the story. MSM outlets, like those listed in Mr. Strong's piece, don't do that. They start from a point of ideological bias, and craft the story (or defense of, in the case of Barry and Jeremiah Wright) around that bias.

Professor Reynolds also brings up another take on the media on his site today. It comes from Maimon Schwarzschild at Right Coast:

The usual disillusioned phrase is “mainstream media” or MSM. The problem, of course, is not mainstream-hood. Angrily talking about the “state-run media” is even more misguided: the media were anything but state-run, or state-sympathetic, when Bush was president; and Republican or conservative officials or judges can expect relentless hostility now as much as ever.

What we have is One-Party Media: newspapers, broadcast networks, newsmagazines which represent the views and preoccupations of the Democratic Party and the political left, and consistently denigrate or ignore the views and preoccupations of the political right or centre-right; and which very often systematically ignore any news or information which might reflect badly on the one party, or reflect well on the policies, proposals, or values of the other. . . . It is extraordinary, and I think unprecedented, that a free press has voluntarily transformed itself into something not very different from the controlled press in an undemocratic country. But that is what has happened.

Say it with me, folks: "Understatement of the Year." We do have nothing more than a One-Party Media, for the most part, and they will do anything they can to protect this incompetent, obtuse, agenda-driven president that was elected by a majority of America that were sucked in by a snake-oil salesman. He offered them "hope" and "change;" empty rhetoric that didn't require any specificity. But now that the people see that the emperor has no clothes (and no clue, for that matter), they're turning on him. Thanks to those who are investigating the JournoList scandal, we see that the all powerful Wizard IS hiding behind the curtain, and that the media -- the Wizard -- is the source of Barry's real power. So long as his willing defenders are ready to paint dissenters as racists (their preferred card in this debate) Barry is safe behind the facade of competence and power. In fact, he's a weak, petulant bully. They know it. We know it. And now we know that they know it otherwise there wouldn't have been a need to dig in and coordinate a defense for him.

Publius II