16 April, 2011

I Love The Smell of Peaceful Green Hippies In The Morning

Rebecca A Mansour retweeted this original tweet by John Nolte:


This caused a poor disturbed individual @molinelobo to post the following:


And this:


And this:


And this:


And this:


This is what the peaceful left looks like. These people are not interested in dialogue. They are interested in shutting up anyone who disagrees with them. And they don’t care how they do it.

The Day Of Reckoning Is Coming

This post is primarily directed at more liberal readers, but whatever your stripe, hopefully there’s something here for you.

We are fast approaching the day of reckoning for our country. Everyone, Democrats and Republicans alike says that the growth of our debt is unsustainable. Every economist says so.

At some point then, our debt will become overwhelming. When that happens, our economy and our lifestyles will suffer catastrophic consequences. And the government won’t be able to help. There’ll be no food stamps, no unemployment checks, no Medicare, no Medicaid, no Social Security, no welfare of any kind.

A popular phrase in Washington, D.C. these days is “we can’t continue to kick the can down the road.” I’ve heard President Barack Obama (D-USA) say it. I’ve heard Congressman Paul Ryan (R-WI-01) say it. That may not be completely true. We might be able to kick the can down the road another ten years or so. We might even be able to put off the crisis for a few years (not ten, though, less than that) while doing so.

So, what we do as a people, and what our government does, over the next ten years may well decide the future of this country as an independent nation. We are facing the largest obstacle to our future since the Civil War. Yes, it’s that big.

Look at this chart. It’s about a year old, but still accurate enough for our purposes.

This chart is pretty optimistic, actually. I’ve seen scarier ones, but it’s good enough.

The good news is that it probably won’t actually be that bad. We probably won’t ever hit 600% of GDP, because the country will self-destruct long before then. Somewhere between 2030 and 2050, our economy will completely melt down.

Here’s a look at projected tax revenue vs. entitlement spending. This is from the CBO.

There’s no doubt about it. President Lyndon B. Johnson’s “Great Society” is bankrupting this country.

But what about defense? We spend way too much there. Surely that’s a bigger problem, right?


Notice that dark blue area at the bottom. That’s defense. The green area and everything above it is entitlements and interest. Interest growth is even worse than entitlement growth. Of course, the interest growth is due to entitlement growth.

So, that’s where we’re going. And it’s ugly. As I’ve been saying a lot lately, this isn’t politics. It’s math. You can argue with politics all you want, but you’ll find it much harder to argue with math.

You don’t like the Ryan plan. I get it. Fine. Then what’s your alternative?

Not the President’s vague outline from the other day, I hope.

The President’s plan does exactly what I mentioned earlier. It kicks the can down the road for another ten years. And buys us maybe 5-8 years, if we’re lucky, on the impending crisis. It does nothing about the major cost factor in our spending growth, and assumes tax revenues at much higher levels than we’ve ever had.

Let’s chalk his plan down as “unserious” then, and move on.

I ask again, what’s your alternative?

Well, we could totally eliminate the military. Libs hate the military.  Well, there’s that graph again.

Looks like we could maybe save a decade or so by eliminating the military. That might be enough time, actually. After that, you won’t care about your entitlement programs because you’ll be too busy learning to speak Chinese.

Let’s mark that idea down as “unserious” and move on.

Let’s tax the heck out of the rich. That’s what Michael Moore says we should do.

But as Mary Katherine Ham points out:

The grand total of the combined net worth of every single one of America’s billionaires is roughly $1.3 trillion. It does indeed sound like a “ton of cash” until one considers that the 2011 deficit alone is $1.6 trillion. So, if the government were to simply confiscate the entire net worth of all of America’s billionaires, we’d still be $300 billion short of making up this year’s deficit.

But, that’s just billionaires, and it’s net worth. We’re talking about taxing income. Let’s look at everyone.

  1. Tax the profits of the entire Fortune 500 at 100%. $391B
  2. Tax 100% of all income over $250,000 for everyone in America. $1.412T

Not even $2T. You’ve covered the deficit for less than a year and a half, and in the process you’ve destroyed the economy.

Of course, you wouldn’t actually go to those extremes, would you? You’d just do part of that. Congratulations, you’ve just returned to the President’s plan which we already decided was “unserious”.

And even if it could work, there’s still a problem. When you increase taxes on big corporations, they tend to move elsewhere. Ask San Francisco about Twitter. Or ask Illinois about Caterpillar. Or New York about Rush Limbaugh. And it’s not just businesses that do that. Those billionaires you want to tax? They have enough money to move elsewhere. And they will.

And, as was mentioned in the link above, what happens then is the well runs dry. Higher taxation is a short term solution. We have a long term problem. All you’ve done is kicked the can down the road a bit.

Let’s mark that idea down as “unserious” too.

I realized that I forgot to compare “The People’s Budget”. So, let’s take a look at that, shall we?

The progressives create impossibly high tax rates, and while they claim to balance the budget in 2021 (it is very hard to confirm their numbers), they almost certainly won’t after that.


Mimicking President Obama, their plan would retain the Bush-era tax rates and some tax credits for those making less than $200,000 ($250,000 for joint filers). In addition, it would protect middle-income families from the Alternative Minimum Tax for another decade.

Beyond that, the tax increases in this plan are breathtaking. It would restore pre-2001 income tax rates for those making between $200,000 and $1 million and create five new brackets for higher earners, topping out at 49 percent for those making $1 billion or more. Capital gains and dividends would be taxed at ordinary income rates for those making $1 million or more (up to 49 percent). It would also cap the value of itemized deductions for high-income taxpayers at 28 percent (another Obama idea), raise Social Security payroll taxes for both workers and employers, and raise the gas tax by 25 percent. There’s more, but you get the drift.

Ah, so a pretend budget. I’d like to see some CBO scoring, but they create burdensome taxes and appear to make it look like they are doing something for the first ten years. They don’t address the growth of entitlements, so like the previous taxation based plans, all they do is kick the can down the road. They should call it “The Taxing the Heck Out of the People Budget”. It would be more accurate, because this budget is about as un-people friendly as you can get.


To review, we’ve discarded:

  • Paul Ryan’s Plan
  • The President’s Plan
  • The People’s Budget
  • Defunding the Military
  • Taxing the heck out of the rich

Hmm. I ask again, what’s your alternative?

There is none. There is no way out of this situation without entitlement reform.

Period. Anyone who says otherwise is lying. Yes, I’m talking to you, Mr. President, and you, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV).

At the risk of repeating myself again, math trumps politics.

You may hate the Ryan plan. But at least it faces reality. If you don’t like it, come up with your own, but if it doesn’t include entitlement reform, all you’re doing is wasting your time and everyone else’s.

And we don’t have any more time to waste.

UPDATED: Included some information on “The People’s Budget”

15 April, 2011

What A Surprise–More Faux News

I saw this yesterday, and neglected to post about it so Jim Hoft at Big Journalism beat me to it.

You may have seen this in U.S. News:

GOP Boss Says Birther Claims a Distraction

Newly-installed Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus has a message for Donald Trump and other so-called “birthers”: Shut up!

Priebus, who’s starting to score some fundraising and organizational victories inside GOP HQ, having taken over for controversial former Chairman Michael Steele, says the debate over President Obama’s birthplace and whether he can be president is a huge distraction away from the party’s effort to fight Democratic spending and tax plans.

However, I saw the GOP Chairman’s tweet when it came across. Here it is, preserved for eternity:

President Ronald Reagan (R-USA) famously said about his arms deal with the Soviets, “trust, but verify”.

We can’t even do that with the MSM anymore. We have to “never trust, and refute”.

This is just pathetic. It’s bad enough to put editorial spin on the front page. It’s worse to ignore stories that are damaging to the Dems, or force all of us to play “name that party” when there’s a Democrat involved in a scandal. But when you invent things out of whole cloth, you lose the right to call yourself a news organization. You are now a purveyor of fiction.

More faux news.

14 April, 2011

Stalking–Peaceful Green Hippie Style

Well, isn’t this just terrific?

Sarah Palin has obtained a new restraining order against the stalker who's been terrorizing her family  -- after the man allegedly made several disturbing threats ... including raping Sarah's daughter.

It's unclear which daughter Sarah was referring to in the legal docs -- but she later mentions that the stalker targeted Willow in his threats and it "bothered [her] tremendously."

It doesn't end there either -- according to the docs, Shawn phoned Sarah's house calling her a "slut or whore" ... and Sarah's dad claims the family was so spooked they "made sure we armed ourselves."

I’m so glad the enlightened left is there to show me the true way to inner peace and contentment.

“Spending Reductions In The Tax Code” Worse Than Orwellian

Yesterday, during his speech, President Barack Obama (D-USA) employed a curious turn of phrase: “spending reductions in the tax code”. Many on the right have rightly criticized this phrase as Orwellian for “tax increases”.

But it’s far worse than that. Look at his exact words (emphasis mine for clarity):

This is my approach to reduce the deficit by $4 trillion over the next twelve years. It’s an approach that achieves about $2 trillion in spending cuts across the budget. It will lower our interest payments on the debt by $1 trillion. It calls for tax reform to cut about $1 trillion in spending from the tax code. And it achieves these goals while protecting the middle class, our commitment to seniors, and our investments in the future.

In the coming years, if the recovery speeds up and our economy grows faster than our current projections, we can make even greater progress than I have pledged here. But just to hold Washington – and me – accountable and make sure that the debt burden continues to decline, my plan includes a debt failsafe. If, by 2014, our debt is not projected to fall as a share of the economy – or if Congress has failed to act – my plan will require us to come together and make up the additional savings with more spending cuts and more spending reductions in the tax code. That should be an incentive for us to act boldly now, instead of kicking our problems further down the road.

Basically what he’s talking about is getting rid of tax deductions, like the home mortgage deduction. But the phrasing is very telling. He thinks of a tax deduction as “government spending”. In other words, he’s stating directly that when the government allows a deduction, they are giving you some of their money, not letting you keep more of your own.

We’ve known on the right that those on the left feel this way for some time, but this is the first time I can remember a prominent Democrat politician, much less the President, actually say it in words out loud.

It’s possible that I’m even giving him a benefit of the doubt here that he doesn’t deserve. I’m assuming he’s talking about deductions, but he may consider any kind of tax cut or lowered tax rate as “spending in the tax code”. It’s not really clear, and it’d be easy to make the even scarier interpretation.

Regardless, the conclusion here is inescapable. We’re past “slippery slope” territory. We’ve even zoomed right on by “carried to its logical conclusion”. Once you start down the path the President laid out yesterday, there’s only one possible destination.

And that’s that the government owns everything, and you only get what the government decides to give you.

Congratulations, everyone. You went to bed on Tuesday night in the United States of America. You woke up in the United Socialist States of America.

Mr. President, You Lie

I’m writing this in response to the President’s speech yesterday about his “new” budget plans, and why they are laughable from the start.

Then Senator Barack Obama (D-IL), debating Senator John McCain (R-AZ), October 2008:

But there is no doubt that we’ve been living beyond our means and we’re going to have to make some adjustments.

Now, what I’ve done throughout this campaign is to propose a net spending cut.


President Barack Obama (D-USA) in 2011, State of the Union Address:

The health insurance law we passed last year will slow these rising costs.


Employees' share of premiums for a family plan is up an average 14%, to $3,997, vs. just a 3% rise in the total bill, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

And it's not just premiums that are spiraling higher. You're also likely to be hit with higher deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums as well as bigger bills for doctor's visits and drugs.

"Increasingly, employees have to be thoughtful about not just the cost of the plan, but the cost of the services they use," says Michael Thompson, a principal with Pricewaterhouse-Coopers' human resources practice.

Obama, 2009:

That is why I have pledged that I will not sign health insurance reform that adds even one dime to our deficit over the next decade. And I mean it. We have estimated that two-thirds of the cost of reform to bring health care security to every American can be paid for by reallocating money that is simply being wasted in federal health care programs.


CBO: Obamacare = at least $109 Billion in Deficit Spending Over 10 Years; UPDATE: Former CBO Director: Obamacare Deficit will be $562 Billion over 10 years

And that includes the double-counting of Medicare “savings”.

“There is an issue here on the budget because your own actuary has said you can’t double-count,” said Shimkus. “You can’t count — they’re attacking Medicare on the CR when their bill, your law, cut $500 billion from Medicare.”

He continued: “Then you’re also using the same $500 billion to what? Say your funding health care. Your own actuary says you can’t do both. […] What’s the $500 billion in cuts for? Preserving Medicare or funding the health-care law?

Sebelius’ reply? “Both.”

And it includes such wonderful budget gimmickry as collecting taxes for 10 years, but only running the program for 5. Sure, that’ll help the deficit numbers for the first ten years, but unless you’re only planning on running the program half the time from now on, you have a problem after the first ten years are up.

Another source of double-counted savings is the CLASS Act, which creates a new, federally run long-term care insurance program. Beneficiaries will begin paying premiums in 2011 but will not receive benefits for five years. This frontloads revenue and creates the illusion of $70 billion to pay for new spending under PPACA. In reality, premium payments from CLASS will be used to pay out benefits in later years.[8] Senator Kent Conrad (D–ND) called this “a Ponzi scheme of the first order, the kind of thing that Bernie Madoff would have been proud of.”[9]

Then Senator Obama, 2008:

"I can make a firm pledge," he said in Dover, N.H., on Sept. 12. "Under my plan, no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase. Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes."

He repeatedly vowed "you will not see any of your taxes increase one single dime."


Now in office, Obama, who stopped smoking but has admitted he slips now and then, signed a law raising the tobacco tax nearly 62 cents on a pack of cigarettes, to $1.01. Other tobacco products saw similarly steep increases.


The health care law that Obama signed on March 23, 2010, raises taxes on some things regardless of income. Two taxes in particular stand out. A tax on indoor tanning services begins this year. And in 2014, people will have to pay a fine, levied through their income taxes, if they don't have health insurance. Neither of these taxes are pegged to income.

President Obama, 2011 SOTU:

We have to confront the fact that our government spends more than it takes in. That is not sustainable.

Reality of budget plan from one month later:

At no point in the president’s 10-year projection would the U.S. government spend less than it's taking in.

Obama, yesterday:

This is my approach to reduce the deficit by $4 trillion over the next twelve years. It’s an approach that achieves about $2 trillion in spending cuts across the budget. It will lower our interest payments on the debt by $1 trillion. It calls for tax reform to cut about $1 trillion in spending from the tax code. And it achieves these goals while protecting the middle class, our commitment to seniors, and our investments in the future.


Called a “debt failsafe trigger,” Obama’s scheme would automatically raise taxes if politicians spend too much. According to the talking points distributed by the White House, the automatic tax increase would take effect “if, by 2014, the projected ratio of debt-to-GDP is not stabilized and declining toward the end of the decade.”

In other words, more tax increases coming your way.

Finally, it’s worth pointing out that even his new plan expects a tax revenue-to-GDP ratio of much higher than 20%. So, this graph should not be missed.

As you can see, the peak was just over 20% (20.9% to be precise). Some say that we can’t consistently beat 19% (this is known as “Hauser’s Law”). I don’t know whether that’s true or not, but I do know that it would be foolish to assume that we can, since we never have.

Over this period there have been more than 30 major changes in the tax code including personal income tax rates, corporate tax rates, capital gains taxes, dividend taxes, investment tax credits, depreciation schedules, Social Security taxes, and the number of tax brackets among others. Yet during this period, federal government tax collections as a share of GDP have moved within a narrow band of just under 19% of GDP.

Why? Higher taxes discourage the "animal spirits" of entrepreneurship. When tax rates are raised, taxpayers are encouraged to shift, hide and underreport income. Taxpayers divert their effort from pro-growth productive investments to seeking tax shelters, tax havens and tax exempt investments. This behavior tends to dampen economic growth and job creation. Lower taxes increase the incentives to work, produce, save and invest, thereby encouraging capital formation and jobs. Taxpayers have less incentive to shelter and shift income.

Really, based on his track record, anyone that believes Obama when it comes to any kind of dollar figures should be forced to wear a tattoo on his forehead that says “moron”.

The Obligatory ‘Rick Santorum Launches Exploratory Committee’ Post

Former Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA) announced last night that he’s creating a 2012 Presidential exploratory committee.

BTW, what exactly is that? Look. Don’t mince words. Run. Or don’t run. Don’t dip one toe in the pool to check the temperature first.

Hey, at least he hasn’t been to 57 states with a couple more to go to.

I’ve been out traveling the country. I’ve been to 25 states over the past year, spending a lot of extra time in Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada now, and I’ve gotten a lot of great feedback from people, a lot of encouragement. And I feel like we’ve got a good, strong presence on the ground, and now really the test for me is whether we can raise the money that’s necessary.

13 April, 2011

The President Isn’t A Hypocrite About The Debt Ceiling

Well, he is. But he’s no more of a hypocrite here than a typical politician.

Many people are pointing out one of his past statements about raising the debt ceiling, and his “no” vote on the issue.

The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can’t pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies.

And now:

And today White House press secretary Jay Carney said that “the president, as David Plouffe said yesterday, regrets that vote and thinks it was a mistake.  He realizes now that raising the debt ceiling is so important to the health of this economy and the global economy that it is not a vote that, even when you are protesting an administration's policies, you can play around with, and you need to take very seriously the need to raise the debt limit so that the full faith and credit of the United States government is maintained around the globe.

Look, fiscal responsibility is always a good talking point. You rarely come out on the losing side of that issue, as long as you don’t provide any specifics. Therefore, the minority party nearly always opposes raising the debt ceiling. Why not? It doesn’t cost them anything. They know it’s going to pass without their help, so they can score a few political points coming out against it.

The truth is that generally very few in Washington are opposed to debt, no matter how big it is. But they don’t want that to be public. So, the minority party and vulnerable members from the majority vote no. Then everyone pats themselves on the back, and winks to each other that they’ve fooled the American public again, and business proceeds as usual in Washington. It’s been going on like that for over 100 years.

Had President George W. Bush (R-USA) been a Senator in the minority before becoming President, he likely would have voted against raising the debt ceiling too. That’s the way the game is played.

Do I like that? No, of course not. But I’m not foolish enough to be in denial of it.

So, President Barack Obama (D-USA) is no more a hypocrite on this issue than just about every other Congressman and Senator who has ever lived. I’m not happy about his reversal, but it’s hardly surprising, and it would be hardly surprising even if he had an R after his name. Bloggers and pundits that think he should be excoriated for this need to examine history.

Now, having sad all that, I’m not going to let him or the rest of the Democrats off the hook entirely. The Democrats took the screaming about debt and deficits to unheard of levels during the Bush years. Ok, you want to argue that Bush and the GOP were spendthrifts? I wouldn’t argue too strongly against you.


When the Democrats gained power, did they cut spending? No. But no one in Washington ever has, so that’s hardly surprising. Did they follow the normal pattern and go to modest spending increases? No. They threw everything they could get into the budget, and into their plans for the foreseeable future. FY09 had nearly a $1.5T deficit. Ok, but half of that was TARP. So, FY10 and FY11 should have been much smaller. They weren’t.

If Bush and the GOP were fiscally irresponsible in the early 2000s, then the spending that Obama and the Democrats have done amounts to treason. You want to accuse them of hypocrisy, there’s your target. And you’d be absolutely right.

Now, the Tea Party has gone even further. Did I say that the amount of screaming about the debt and deficit during the Bush years was unprecedented? If so, then we need a whole new word for what the Tea Party has done. And that’s a good thing. As long as we hold the Republicans feet to the fire on this issue.

Sooner or later (hopefully sooner), the Democrats will no longer be the dominant power in Washington. There are more than a few indications that the GOP leadership expects once again to go back to business as usual when that happens. Sure, they’ll offer up a few token cuts to appease the base, but then they’ll go back to patting themselves on the back and winking to each other that once again, we’ve been fooled. We can not let that happen this time. We cannot be fooled again. This time is has to be different. We have to make it be so.

Or it’s over. Forget about security for your children. There’s not even going to be security for you.

Ok, I was wrong. Partly.

And people like Tammy Bruce and Erick Erickson were more right than I was giving them credit for.

I said that while the budget deal was a crap sandwich, it was the best crap sandwich we were likely to get. As more details are exposed, the deal looks even crappier.

However, I stand behind my other points, being a shutdown favors the Democrats, and that we’re not going to get anything but crap sandwiches as long as this President is in the White House. As I said earlier, we’re going to have to fight for every penny, and when we’ve gotten all the pennies we’re likely to get, it’s time to move on to the next battle.

Forcing Harry Reid to agree to an up or down vote in the Senate on ObamaCare funding and Planned Parenthood funding are big wins, and will be important next November.

I am not walking back on anything I said when I described how the Tea Party can win.

So, I was wrong in calling the budget deal a win. Mea culpa. I foolishly took Speaker Boehner (R-OH-08) at his word. I won’t make that mistake again.

He should have gotten more pennies. But he should not have shut the government down over it.

Next battle is still the debt ceiling, then budget for FY2012. I’m still cautiously optimistic about both of those, but considerably less so than I was on Sunday.

Oh, and Sarah Palin was one of the people that was right. I should know better than to trust my instincts vs. hers. Say what you will about the lady, but to deny her political savvy is to deny reality.

12 April, 2011

Peaceful Green Hippie Gets Probation

A Wisconsin man was sentenced Monday to probation for a November 2010 incident in which he became so enraged that Bristol Palin remained on "Dancing With The Stars" he shot his TV, the Wisconsin State Journal reported.

Steven Cowan, 68, claimed Palin's success on the show was a political conspiracy before he blasted his set with a shotgun and began a 15-hour standoff with cops at his home in Black Earth, Wis., 19 miles (30 kilometers) west of Madison.

Shooting your TV because the daughter of someone you dislike is doing well in a reality show. This is a man who seriously needs to unplug.

11 April, 2011

Lovin’ Those Peaceful Green Hippies

Yes, I have trouble with Facebook. And all I wanted to do was share my blog. I’m not even posting content there, just linking.
Meanwhile…this page is on their site. And has been for some time, despite numerous complaints.
More here.
So much for that new civility.
I’m not even going to comment further. Given my mood today, that’s probably for the best.

The Obligatory Mitt Romney Has Launched An Exploratory Committee Post

Yawn. No, I can’t comment on the video. Didn’t watch it. Have no desire to do so.
I’ve said it before. I’ll say it again.
Barack Obama stands a far better chance of getting my vote on November 6, 2012 than Mitt Romney does.
And I loathe Barack Obama.
So, that should clear up any questions about my feelings for Mitt.

Everything Old Is Well, Still Old

We heard yesterday that the White House will unveil a new plan for fiscal responsibility this week. Well, I’m glad that the White House is jumping on the bandwagon, but the ink isn’t dry on their last pathetic budget plan. Nothing says “leadership” like jumping all over the place on issues.

And we already know what’s going to be in it. They’re going to time warp back to last summer, which means killing the Bush tax cuts, major cuts to defense, and they’ll punt on entitlements and tell Congress to do something about them.

I’m pretty sure we already had this election, but apparently President Barack Obama (D-USA) thinks he gets a mulligan. Maybe the only thing that says “leadership” like jumping all over the place is jumping back a year to arguments that were miserable failures then. The fashion world has a statement that “everything old is new again”, but that doesn’t apply here. In this case, old is well, still old.

Expect to hear, once again, all summer long about how awful the Bush tax cuts are. We’ll also hear that if not for the evil Republicans who are being held hostage to the even more evil Tea Party not allowing him to expire them, we wouldn’t be in this mess.
Remember this graph?

Removing that tax cut on the $250,000 and up crowd will only get the feds back an additional $700B. And that’s over ten years. When you’re running trillion dollar deficits annually, that’s a drop in the bucket. It’s not that much bigger a drop than the one we got this weekend which works out to be over $400B over ten years.

If we get rid of all of the Bush tax cuts, we get to $3T over ten years. A much more impressive number, but that assumes that we don’t kill the economy in the process, so you can write down “unrealistic” next to that number.

Expect no one on the Democrat side to mention ObamaCare at all, and to attempt very hard to deflect the subject when asked about it.

And certainly don’t expect any Democrat to even discuss the fact that we had all these discussions already, and that the American public made their opinion on them quite clear.

GOP Trust Ad

The ad’s ok, but it also serves as a great round up of more of those peaceful green hippies in action.