Juicy raw meat served up fresh for conservative political junkies...

Monday, May 12, 2008

Government Surplus- Why supply side works

by George Dienhart

Fox News reports the following:

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. government took in a record $404 billion in revenue in April, up 5% from a year earlier, but outlays rose 19% to $244.5 billion, cutting the monthly surplus down to $159.3 billion, the Treasury Department reported Monday. The surplus in April was close to the $160 billion estimated by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. For the first six months of the fiscal year, the total deficit of $152.2 billion jumped 88% from the $80.8 billion through the first six months of last fiscal year. Reflecting the economic slowdown, total receipts are up 3% this year to $1.55 trillion. Outlays through the first six months are up 7.4% to $1.7 trillion.

See- the tax cuts are working, and most likely a major reason that we have not slipped into recession. We just need to work on the outlays, which outpaced inflation.

Does the RNC finally get it?

by George Dienhart

The Washington Times has obtained a memo outlining what may be the Republican campaign strategy this fall. In part, the memo states:

"It starts with this: Washington is broken, the American people want it fixed, and Democrats in Washington have proven unable or unwilling to get the job done. Republicans will,"

This is addressing that “change” thing all the kids are so crazy about these days. It is also putting the lack of change over the last two years squarely where it belongs- right at speaker Pelosi’s dainty little feet. This is the first salvo of a policy that is designed to stem the massive hemorrhaging that is slowly killing the GOP.

It is all part of what the RNC calls "American Families Agenda"- which is scheduled to kick off on Wednesday. The Agenda is designed to address challenges confronting families and will seek to replace outdated laws to help women with children who work outside the home and families in which both parents work. These groups normally skew to the left, and are a growing part of the population. The first item on the agenda addresses rising fuel costs- this is good timing because prices will drop after the summer travel season ends. This will keep the agenda on people’s minds as the prices drop. Mmm mmm- that’s good politics.

Other parts of the agenda will address health care, the economy and national security. The Democrats have seized the health care issue as a tent pole in their own strategy. The economy and national security are normally GOP territory. This year the economy may be in play- but economic concerns are already ebbing as the dollar gains strength and employment numbers keep coming in better than expected. The economy grew last quarter, meaning there is no chance that the current slowdown can be rightfully called a recession- it takes negative growth in consecutive quarters for that. The economy will probably grow again this quarter anyway, albeit more slowly than I would like to see. Voters are not stupid and truth normally wins out at the end of the day. Barring any kind of catastrophe, the economy is likely to be a non-factor in this election.

As always, the devil is in the details. Politicians make promises all the time. The Democrats made their 6 in ’06 promises two years ago and dropped the ball on every one of the six promises. We all want cheaper fuel, but how are we going to get it? The first step is to enact a strong dollar policy- a stronger dollar will buy more oil per dollar than a weak dollar. We also need to drill, drill, drill, and drill. In short, we need to stop printing money as if it was the Sunday paper, and start developing our own oil fields. The strong dollar part of the equation could be done immediately by the fed buying back gobs of greenbacks. Europe would most likely agree to a similar buying spree as it is in their best interests as well. Developing our untapped fields in the ocean and in Alaska will take longer, but have long-term benefits.

As far as healthcare goes, I feel we are falling into a trap to outspend the Democrats on this. Even if we win elections, we may lose if the GOP jumps on any kind of healthcare plan that infringes on what is currently the best healthcare system in the world. We can drive down rates by allowing insurance companies to pool the members across the nation, as opposed to having separate plans for each state. The potential savings of truly national insurance are massive would open up the markets to millions of new consumers.

As far as national defense goes, we really need to differentiate ourselves from the Democrats here, and it comes down to one thing- do you want to surrender or win?, America will chose to win, by an overwhelming margin when the stakes are spelled out. This is an easy victory for us.

I will cover this more Wednesday after the news embargo on this is lifted. We will see how close I am.


Someone else that doesn't know when to call it quits

by George Dienhart

I’m talking to you Bob Barr. Apparently, he’s a Libertarian now. A Libertarian with WAYYYY to much time on his hands. What’s Bob’s solution to the federal government spending too much? Why he’s planning on trying to siphon off votes from the candidate that best represents restraint in spending. Great plan Bob, really.

Why is she hanging in there?

by George Dienhart

Clintonista Terry McAuliffe knows why, and dishes in an email sent to solicit campaign funds:

'Hillary is within striking distance of winning the popular vote nationwide - a key part of our plan to win the nomination.'

It looks as though she is not planning to bow out graciously after Obama declares victory on the 20th. The next two states should go to Hillary by overwhelming margins, adding to her popular vote lead.

Double standard prevails

by George Dienhart

Camp Obama refuses to address corruption issues- ties to Toby Rezko. The Rezko issue was active just 3 years ago when Rezko helped Obama buy his McMansion. Why is this relevant? It is relevant because the Obama Camp has decided to bring up the “Keating 5” scandal from McCain’s past. Past as in 1989. Interesting double standard. A fascinating historical footnote is that 4 members of the Keating 5 were Democrats. Why is that relevant? According to a wikipedia article, Robert S. Bennett, whom McCain had hired to represent him in this matter, defended McCain's character and was one of many people who criticized the piece. Bennett, who was the special investigator during the Keating Five scandal that The Times revisited in the article, said that he fully investigated McCain back then and suggested to the Senate Ethics Committee to not pursue charges against McCain because of "no evidence against him." Bennett was coincidentally on Hannity and Colmes the night the story broke to talk about his autobiography. On the show, he said that he felt the Committee pursued charges against McCain because, without him, the case would have been entirely against Democrats.” I guess that is what passes as fair to the Democrats.

The Scorecard

by George Dienhart

List courtesy of the New York Times:

Republicans and Democrats agree that the following states are in play:






New Hampshire

New Mexico







Republicans believe that they can add:

New Jersey


Democrats believe that they can be competitive in


North Carolina

South Carolina

One things for sure- the maps going to look a whole lot different on election night.


The biggest insult of all

by George Dienhart

Obama is compared to Walter Mondale in the Chicago Tribune:

"Obama's 2-front battle has given McCain an edge.  We'll make the case that Barack Obama is a wonderful new voice selling old, discredited ideas, including the most massive tax increase since Walter Mondale ran for president,' said Steve Schmidt, a senior McCain adviser. 'It's a combination of weakness, not being ready to be president and not being able to deliver on the things he says he will deliver on.'”

Maureen Dowd nixes "Dream Ticket"

By George Dienhart

Dowd states (via the Politico):

"Obama will never be at his best around Hillary; she drains him of his magical powers. She's Jane Jinx to him. It's a similar syndrome to the one Katharine Hepburn's star athlete and her supercilious fiancé have in 'Pat and Mike.'

Rezko comes up again in Newsweek

by George Dienhart

This is why I wrote today’s first post about Obama and Rezko- you’ll be hearing a lot more of Rezko’s name as we move closer to the general election. Via Newsweek:

“Obama is 'extremely vulnerable' to questioning about his ties to Chicago fixer Tony Rezko, who has been indicted for political corruption. (Obama is not linked to any wrongdoing.) Another target is former Weather Underground member Bill Ayers, whose association with Obama will remind voters of bomb-throwing student radicals of the 1960s. 'There's plenty of stuff out there,' says Brown. 'I'm kinda like in a candy store in this election.”

The article also describes the upcoming election cycle as “swiftboat times 5”

Support Myannar- or support a brutal Junta?

Don’t get me wrong, Google is trying to do a good thing here. I just hope the money actually gets to the victims. I’d stay away from the UN administered UNICEF and give to Direct Relief International.

The mighty middle?

by George Dienhart

Gerald F. Seib and John Harwood of The Wall Street Journal speculates that moderates may pave the way to a less confrontational legislature:

'The long, fascinating spectacle of the presidential primaries has all but obscured their potential impact on American politics: Campaign 2008 may break Washington's gridlock by reviving the long-dormant political center. ...
They go on to write, 'In the wake of Tuesday's primary elections in North Carolina and Indiana, it appears more likely than ever that the two presidential candidates this fall will be Sen. Barack Obama for the Democrats and Sen. John McCain for the Republicans. They happen to be the two most surprisingly successful candidates of the year, and both got ahead largely by arguing they have unique abilities to bring people together in Washington.'

This is probably true of a McCain presidency. An Obama presidency will be more successful in passing legislation that the Bush administration, largely due the Democrats majority in both houses. I doubt that there would be a lot of reaching across the isle, though. There’s not enough common ground between conservatives and the nation’s most liberal Senator (by ACU rating).

From the unintentionally funny file:

by George Dienhart

According to Ron Allen on 'the Chris Matthews Show, Sen. Obama has quite a sense of humor. Or maybe he’s just a vindictive jerk:  'May 20th: Oregon, Kentucky - the day that Obama thinks he's going to get a majority of the pledged delegates. He's probably going to have a big speech, not in Louisville or Portland, but probably in a swing state - Michigan or Florida - and really make a pitch to get this thing moving to the general election.'

So, he’ll declare victory in one of the states that he has worked so hard to disenfranchise. Funny Guy, that Obama…

Smart move from the McCain camp.

by George Dienhart

When Hillary surged late in the primary season, Obama started ducking debates. Apparently someone at McCain HQ noticed. Via the Politico:

'The McCain camp is also examining a suggestion by Mark McKinnon, a media strategist for the Republicans, who has suggested that his boss and Mr Obama agree to campaign together in some states, attending joint town hall meetings and debating each other without a moderator. ... [A] refusal from Mr. Obama could be used against him.  'The town hall meeting is John's best format,' the aide said. 'He's a natural campaigner up close with the public. That would test Obama's claims that he wants a clean fight on the issues. John is also strong on finance reform. If Obama reneges on public funding it will look bad.'

Balls in your court, Sen. Obama.

Who is Tony Rezko and what is his connection to Obama?

by George Dienhart

I have a large family, at least by modern standards. With all the kids, we probably pull apart our coach and vacuum it out more often than smaller families. We always find a virtual treasure trove of items when we clean out the couch. We have found PSP games, missing remote controls, and all sorts of “action figures”. Barbie dolls, GI Joe and other toys seep in to the dark and mysterious crevices of our couch, only to surface when we do our weekend cleaning. We also find spare change. The most I ever found was about enough to buy a cup of coffee at Starbucks.

During the campaign, Sen. Obama also cleaned out his couch. He apparently found enough spare change to buy 24,633 cups of coffee. That is $73,900.00 in change that was found in the cushions of the metaphorical couch where Tony Rezko once sat. When it has all said and done, Rezko has lost about 200 thousand dollars worth of change in the cushions of Obama’s various fund raising efforts. This is what Obama must be referring to in his constant calls for “change”.

So, you must be wondering whom the Rezko connected Obama donors were. The list includes:

  • Talat Othman ($1000.00), whom Rezko recommended for a spot on the Illinois Finance Authority.
  • Semir Sirazi ($2000.00), a friend of Tony Rezko who insists that Rezko owes him money. I wonder where that money could have went….
  • Michael Sreenan ($2000.00), an attorney for a Rezko development company and eventual owner of a certain infamous piece of land in Chicago. Sreenan purchased this lot, which adjoins the Obama’s home, from Rezko’s wife.

All in all, a lot of joe. Still thirsty? I hope so; we also noticed a fresh steaming hot cup of Hypocrisy at the Obama’s house. I will not often thank the Clinton’s, but they served us this tasty treat:

'Senator Obama has premised his campaign on just words, most notably the resounding speech he delivered in October 2002 against the Iraq war. But with the fifth anniversary of the invasion upon us, the onus is now on Senator Obama to demonstrate what he did to act on that 2002 speech when he got to the U.S. Senate. ... When he took over the subcommittee that oversees NATO and Afghanistan and had a chance to follow up on the part of his 2002 speech that argued that Iraq diverted attention from Afghanistan, he failed to hold a single hearing. ... At the end of the day, the true test for a president is not the speeches he or she delivers - it's whether he or she delivers on the speeches.'

So, the most anti-war candidate was actually in position to “do something” about the war. What did he choose to do? Absolutely nothing. No hearings, no new ideas, and no change. Just more business as usual for Barrack Obama, once again showing that his MO is to say something inspiring while doing absolutely nothing...

That is a bad week for a man running for president. Incredibly, there is even more. Controversy once again reared its ugly head in the form of Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright. We all heard the stories about the America hating preacher that Obama counts amongst his advisers. Obama has tried to ignore the talk of what goes on in his church, often stating that he has not attended during the most controversial sermons. Newsmax magazine seems to think otherwise. Ronald Kessler reported that Obama attended for the now famous ‘United States of White America' sermon. He also added, “the senator sat in his pew and nodded in agreement.”

When you add this all together, it becomes apparent that Obama has some serious deficiencies in his personality. His association with Rezko shows that he is a bad judge of character. He compounded his bad judgment in regards to Rezko by taking 200 thousand dollars in cash from him for various political campaigns. He also showed bad judgment in allowing Rezko to become involved in purchasing the lot adjoining the property Obama wished to buy; it appears Rezko may have paid more for his property so Obama would be able to pay less. Either Obama chose to ignore that Rezko might believe that Obama now owed him a favor, or he is the most naïve man ever to walk the face of the earth. Neither trait makes for a good president. These character traits are bad enough, but Obama also chooses to befriend a pastor who takes every available opportunity to insult America, spew hatred and disseminate harmful rhetoric about race. Not only did Obama fail to get up and walk out of the church as Rev. Wright continuously assailed America- he allegedly showed his agreement by sitting quietly in his pew, nodding his head.

I guess a November win by Obama would be a change. We would change Presidents, going from an honest, hard working man who loves America to Obama. That is not the kind of change I want to find.