Published on Nov 23, 2014
” A bill (Kenan Thompson) and an executive order (Bobby Moynihan) explain how government really works with a little help from President Obama (Jay Pharaoh). “
” Last Saturday in Gouda, Holland, the police arrested as many as 90 people, the majority of whom were protesting against “Black Pete”, part of a traditional pre-Christmas children’s street party.
We don’t normally associate a Santa Claus celebration with police arrests, so this requires a little explanation.
Black Pete (Zwarte Piet in Dutch) is a blackface character in Dutch and Belgian folklore. He is the clownish helper of St Nicholas (Sinterklaas) in delivering presents to children.
In the Netherlands, the Sinterklaas festival lasts for weeks culminating on Saint Nicholas Day, 5 December, and starting with the arrival of St Nicholas in a Dutch city by boat with hundreds of jolly Black Petes, amusing kids and giving them treats.
It’s great fun and a merry occasion for the Dutch, and considered by both children and adults as the highlight of the year.
This year it was the medieval city of Gouda that kicked off the festivities on 15 November, with the event broadcast live on Dutch national television.
Thousands of parents and children gathered in the city’s market square.
Traditionally the crowds — men, women and kids — as well as the actors portraying the Black Petes coming off the ships, are white people with their faces painted black, frizzy hair, golden earrings, large red lips and gaudy medieval costumes.
It’s this that has been for some time the subject of acrimonious attacks from self-styled “anti-racism” activists. They claim that Zwarte Piet is a racist stereotype, a throwback to the colonial era in a now diverse, multicultural Holland, a country that must be tolerant of everything except, it seems, its past, culture, traditions, and identity.
Leftist politicians have called for Black Pete to be abolished.
The criticisms have polarized the Netherlands. The overwhelming majority of the nation wants Black Pete to carry on as usual, as revealed by a poll showing that more than 90% of the Dutch reject the idea that Zwarte Piet is racist and would not change his appearance.
Over 2 million people — in a country whose total population is less than 17 million — signed a Facebook petition last year, calling for Black Pete’s appearance to remain the same.
While the Facebook page “The Dutch ‘Black Pete’ tradition is racism” has a risible number of 198 “Likes”, the Facebook page “Pietitie” in Pete’s support has 2,012,438 “Likes”. It says: “Don’t let the Netherlands’ most beautiful tradition disappear.”
The latter FB page is Holland’s most popular ever.
The Dutch say Black Pete is harmless fun, an integral part of their culture that is now under fire from outsiders. As Dutchman Marco put it: “This is how I celebrate, how my grandmother and grandfather and parents celebrated, and I don’t think it’s racist.”
Holland’s anti-immigration, anti-Islam Freedom Party, led by one of the most popular politicians in Europe, Geert Wilders, has proposed legislation that would enshrine Zwarte Piet’s black colour in law. They want to protect Pete and with him Dutch culture, threatened to be “damaged from on high”.
Belgium has a similar tradition and faces similar problems.
Self-described human rights activist Maria Hengeveld, who writes for the Africa is a Country website, claimed: “In general, attacks on Zwarte Piet are widely interpreted as attacks on (white) Dutchness and threats to (white) children’s right to jovially celebrate their ‘cultural heritage’”. She went on to point out that politicians, lawmakers and big businesses “are sensitive to public feeling” on the issue. For example, Albert Heijn, Holland’s largest supermarket chain, went back on its promise to ban Black Pete from its stores after an enormous public uproar.
Even the country’s Prime Minister Mark Rutte, who may sense a danger in displeasing his electorate, has backed Black Pete.
Attempted meddling from the UN was revoked:
The [Facebook] page, attracting over a million likes in just one day, followed a letter from the UN’s human rights body announcing an investigation and warning the Dutch that the [Black Pete] character is a “racist stereotype”. “
Published on Nov 20, 2014
– Debbie Wasserman-Schultz
– China’s one-child limit
– IRS fraudulent refunds
– Gitmo detainees
– Fox series “Utopia” canceled
– Joe’s Crab Shack
– Bruce Jenner
Love NewsBusted and want to receive alerts about new episodes in your
email? Visit http://newsbusters.org/newsbusted to sign up for free!
Starring: Jodi Miller
Production: Dialog New Media “
Published on Nov 22, 2014
” Comparing him at one point to Tony Soprano, Judge Jeanine Pirro rips Obama from stem to stern for his outlandish and lawless immigration “orders.” “
But it turns out they don’t. Not to him. You gotta hand it to the guy: It would be hard to devise a more open expression of contempt for the will of the people than what he’s just done. An election was held. His party lost, badly. And, without waiting for the new guys even to take their seats, in the so-called “lame-duck session” (an unnecessary carbuncular proceduralism most developed nations manage to do without), the President tells the – oh, what’s the word? – “citizenry”, “Hey, thanks for taking the trouble to drive to the polling station the other day. Leave your name at the desk and if we need you for cheering extras at my photo-op we’ll get back to you.” You can change legislators. Meanwhile, he’ll change the legislation.
I’m getting weary of the monarchical comparisons, which are a bit of an insult to real monarchs. The Obama model seems to owe more to Judge Dredd, the popular comic-book figure with the power to arrest, convict, sentence and execute as he does what’s necessary to bring hope and change to a dystopian megalopolis. Likewise, President Dredd: “He is the Law, and you’d better believe it!” A contempt for the people and for constitutional and legal restraints is what ties the President’s actions on Thursday night to Eric Holder’s corrupt justice department to Lois Lerner’s corrupt revenue agency to Jonathan Gruber’s corrupt health commissariat (merely to skim the surface of the most recent additions to the unending Obama-scandals document dump).
To express common-or-garden contempt for the will of the people, Obama could have simply repealed another handful of inconvenient paragraphs from Obamacare or made Lois Lerner Attorney-General, but the form of contempt he chose is especially exquisite: “legalizing” millions of foreign law-breakers and setting them on the path to US citizenship. The chief of state has heard the voice of the people and his message to them is: “Yeah, whatever, I can always get another people. Hey, here comes five million or so right now, plus another ten million in chain-migration relatives down the road…” “
Saturday’s must read …
” The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is the lead federal agency for disaster preparedness, response, and relief. FEMA’s budget fluctuates from year to year, but spending has trended sharply upwards in recent decades. The agency spent $22 billion in fiscal 2013 and $10 billion in fiscal 2014. The main activity of FEMA is distributing aid to individuals and state and local governments after natural disasters, such as hurricanes, floods, and earthquakes. In addition, the agency provides ongoing grants to the states for disaster preparedness, and it operates the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).
FEMA’s response to some major disasters has been slow, disorganized, and profligate. The agency’s actions have sometimes been harmful, such as when it has blocked the relief efforts of other organizations. FEMA’s dismal response to Hurricane Katrina in 2005 dramatized the agency’s bureaucratic dysfunction. FEMA’s grants for disaster preparedness are known for wastefulness. As for the NFIP, its insurance subsidies are spurring development in flood-prone areas, which in turn is increasing the damage caused by floods. The NFIP also encourages an expansion of federal regulatory control over local land-use planning.
Federalism is supposed to undergird America’s system of handling disasters, particularly natural disasters. State, local, and private organizations should play the dominant role. Looking at American history, many disasters have generated large outpourings of aid by individuals, businesses, and charitable groups.
Today, however, growing federal intervention is undermining the role of private institutions and the states in handling disasters. Policymakers should reverse course and begin cutting FEMA. Ultimately, the agency should be closed down by ending aid programs for disaster preparedness and relief and privatizing flood insurance. “
” Civil asset forfeiture is a controversial policy in which the government seizes private property that it believes was either gained through the commission of a crime or used to commit one. However, the items being seized sometimes belong to someone who was never accused of a crime at all or people who later turn out to be completely innocent. Since a civil process is used to seize the items in question, individuals facing the loss of property do so without the benefit of the level of due process that would ordinarily be afforded a criminal defendant.
The Washington Post notes that, under President Obama, civil asset forfeitures have doubled. Now, as Eric Holder steps aside as US Attorney General, his potential replacement, nominee and US Attorney for the Eastern District of New York Loretta Lynch, recently announced that her office seized over $904 million in asset forfeitures in 2013 alone.
According to a quote from The Wall Street Journal’s editorial page, “As a prosecutor Ms. Lynch has also been aggressive in pursuing civil asset forfeiture, which has become a form of policing for profit. She recently announced that her office had collected more than $904 million in criminal and civil actions in fiscal 2013, according to the Brooklyn Daily Eagle.” The editorial calls for senators to ask questions in an effort to clarify Lynch’s views on the controversial policy. “
” Pundits warn that a funding fight over the president’s move to grant de facto amnesty to illegal aliens threatens a politically risky government shutdown. But there’s something much more important at stake here.
The Founders had good reason to give Congress the power of the purse: Short of impeachment, it’s the most effective way to stop a lawless president from disobeying the will of Congress and usurping powers not granted by the Constitution.
The question is: Will Congress use this power to thwart President Obama’s shredding of the Constitution with his executive amnesty plan? “
Even some renowned liberals are recognizing the threat to our Constitution posed by “King Obama’s” unilateral action …
” There’s more at stake here than mere political fortunes. We are at the constitutional tipping point that Georgetown University law professor Jonathan Turley warned us about as Obama continues to wield executive authority that he himself once said he did not have.
We live in a constitutional republic, and the president who says he cannot wait for the Congress to act ignores a Constitution that says he has to. Article I, Section 8 gives Congress exclusive authority to “establish a uniform Rule of Naturalization” and Article II, Section 3 says that it’s the president’s duty “to take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed.”
Professor Turley told the House Judiciary Committee at a Dec. 3 hearing that Obama’s abuse of executive power has grown to the point that “he’s becoming the very danger the Constitution was designed to avoid.” “
” Barack Obama put the cat among the pigeons Thursday night, but he may be surprised by how big that cat could get, and with it a big cat’s appetite for more than pigeons.
His “executive orders” demanding a stop to deportations is no doubt good news for millions of illegal immigrants — 5 million at last count — he wants to preserve and protect for Democrats looking to replenish a depleted constituency. But it’s not such good news for anyone who appreciates law and order on the border. Amnesties can be good, but they must be written carefully lest they invite more of the same misery that led to amnesty. The president’s invitation to the millions south of the border — “Come on in, I’ll find a way to make you legal later” — guarantees that hell on the border will continue, and probably get worse. The hell on the Potomac will get a lot worse.
The president and his lawyers are clever. By not actually issuing an executive order called an executive order — he can call it a “memo” to his prosecutors but it’s still an order from the executive — he will make it more difficult for the Republicans to find a way to overturn it.
Just the anticipation of the president’s big speech set off cries and celebrations. Rep. Nancy Pelosi, having abandoned her dream of ascending once more to speaker of the House, and who knows no more of the nation’s history than the president apparently does, got lost Thursday afternoon in a history book. She mistook Barack Obama for Abraham Lincoln, and his immigration amnesty for the Emancipation Proclamation. “Does the public know that the Emancipation Proclamation was an executive order? she asked. (Does the public know that the Emancipation Proclamation preserved slavery in the four slave states still in the Union, and freed no slaves in the departed Confederate states? The public could look it up.) The only similarities in Mr. Lincoln’s proclamation and Mr. Obama’s order is that neither was intended to resolve anything, but to set loose that cat among the pigeons. The Civil War circa 1861-1865 ground bloodily on, and the immigration system circa 2014 is still broken and bleeding, and probably farther from resolution than ever.
Civil war is the metaphor of the day. Phyllis Schlafly, who almost single-handedly defeated the feminist crusade for an equal-rights amendment, now calls Mr. Obama’s executive order “a modern-day Fort Sumter.” “
Average / Year Years in Office EO Number Range George Washington Total 8 1.02 7.85 unnumbered John Adams Total 1 0.25 4.00 unnumbered Thomas Jefferson Total 4 0.50 8.00 unnumbered James Madison Total 1 0.13 8.00 unnumbered James Monroe Total 1 0.13 8.00 unnumbered John Quincy Adams Total 3 0.75 4.00 unnumbered Andrew Jackson Total 12 1.50 8.00 unnumbered Martin van Buren Total 10 2.50 4.00 unnumbered William Henry Harrison Total 0 0 0.08 unnumbered John Tyler Total 17 4.34 3.92 unnumbered James K. Polk Total 18 4.50 4.00 unnumbered Zachary Taylor Total 5 3.70 1.35 unnumbered Millard Fillmore Total 12 4.53 2.65 unnumbered Franklin Pierce Total 35 8.75 4.00 unnumbered James Buchanan Total 16 4.00 4.00 unnumbered Abraham Lincoln Total 48 11.65 4.12 unnumbered Andrew Johnson Total 79 20.31 3.89 unnumbered Ulysses S. Grant Total 217 27.13 8.00 unnumbered Rutherford B. Hayes Total 92 23.00 4.00 unnumbered James Garfield Total 6 10.91 0.55 unnumbered Chester Arthur Total 96 27.75 3.46 unnumbered Grover Cleveland – I Total 113 28.25 4.00 unnumbered Benjamin Harrison Total 143 35.75 4.00 unnumbered Grover Cleveland – II Total 140 35.00 4.00 unnumbered William McKinley Total 185 40.84 4.53 unnumbered Theodore Roosevelt Total 1,081 144.71 7.47 William Howard Taft Total 724 181.00 4.00 Woodrow Wilson Total 1,803 225.38 8.00 Warren G. Harding Total 522 216.60 2.41 Calvin Coolidge Total 1,203 215.21 5.59 Herbert Hoover Total 968 242.00 4.00 5075 – 6070 Franklin D. Roosevelt Total 3,522 290.59 12.12 6071 – 9537 Harry S. Truman Total 907 116.58 7.78 9538 – 10431 I 504 133.33 3.78 9538 – 10029 II 403 100.75 4.00 10030 – 10431 Dwight D. Eisenhower Total 484 60.50 8.00 10432 – 10913 I 266 66.50 4.00 10432 – 10695-A II 218 54.50 4.00 10696 – 10913 John F. Kennedy Total 214 75.35 2.84 10914 – 11127 Lyndon B. Johnson Total 325 62.86 5.17 11128 – 11451 Richard Nixon Total 346 62.34 5.55 11452 – 11797 I 247 61.75 4.00 11452 – 11698 II 99 63.87 1.55 11699 – 11797 Gerald R. Ford Total 169 68.98 2.45 11798 – 11966 Jimmy Carter Total 320 80.00 4.00 11967 – 12286 Ronald Reagan Total 381 47.63 8.00 12287 – 12667 I 213 53.25 4.00 12287 – 12499 II 168 42.00 4.00 12500 – 12667 George Bush Total 166 41.50 4.00 12668 – 12833 William J. Clinton Total 364 45.50 8.00 12834 – 13197 I 200 50.00 4.00 12834 – 13033 II 164 41.00 4.00 13034 – 13197 George W. Bush Total 291 36.38 8.00 13198 – 13488 I 173 43.25 4.00 13198 – 13370 II 118 29.50 4.00 13371 – 13488 Barack Obama Total 193 33.10 5.83 13489 – 13681 I 147 36.75 4.00 13489 – 13635 II 46 25.14 1.83 13636 – 13681 Note: Obama EO counts are updated monthly following the 20th day of the month to recompute average per year. Orders issued between updates can be accessed here:
Last Update: Data Through November 20, 2014. (through 5.83 years of the Obama Administration)
Citation: Gerhard Peters. “Executive Orders.” The American Presidency Project. Ed. John T. Woolley and Gerhard Peters. Santa Barbara, CA. 1999-2014. Available from the World Wide Web: http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/data/orders.php.
1 1789 to 1945 (Roosevelt) data includes “numbered” and “unnumbered” executive orders. 1945 (Truman) & 1967 (Johnson) data includes only numbered executive orders including those with letter designations (ex. Executive Order 9577-A).
• 1789 – 1945 (Roosevelt) data obtained from Lyn Ragsdale, “Vital Statisitcs on the Presidency: Washington to Clinton.” rev. ed. (Washington, D.C.: CQ Press, 1998).
• 1945 (Truman) – present data compiled by Gerhard Peters, The American Presidency Project, from documents contained in the Federal Register.”
” Remember when President Obama, when asked about what he would do to “ensure more people aren’t being deported,” deferred by saying:
My job is to execute laws that are passed.
I’m the President of the United States. I’m not the emperor of the United States.
Jon Stewart remembers. And he’s noticed how the President’s latest words on the extent of his presidential powers don’t exactly square with his previous declaration that he is not “the emperor.”
I’m going to do what I can do through executive action.
It’s good to be the king. “
” This video, flagged by invaluable Twitter resource and Ace of Spades Decision Desk entrepreneur John Ekdahl, is among the most infuriating things you will see today.
Composed by American Commitment, this video is nothing more than a smash cut of the various videos of Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber juxtaposed against footage of Democratic lawmakers either denying his existence or exalting him to the heavens.”
” President Obama’s looming executive action on immigration reform represents a Fort Sumter-type moment, according to conservative icon Phyllis Schlafly.
Fort Sumter, of course, is the sea fort in Charleston, South Carolina. It was there that the opening shots of the U.S. Civil War were fired on April 12, 1861.
Schlafly at first considered comparing the Obama amnesty to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, but decided that Obama’s plan is much more subtle.
“ With Pearl Harbor, the American people knew what was happening,” she said.
But Fort Sumter represented the beginning of a ruinous war, and Schlafly, like fellow conservative luminary Richard Viguerie, speculates that an executive amnesty might touch off a sort of modern-day conflagration.
Obama plans to announce his unilateral immigration reform proposal in a televised address Thursday night. While no details are being released by the White House until then, analysts widely expect it to include work permits for up to five million people currently in the U.S. illegally.
However, the administration may be expecting to authorize many more than those five million. Last month, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services began searching for a contractor capable of producing up to 34 million blank green cards over the next five years. “
” So the Senate Democrats just defeated the $8 billion Keystone XL pipeline by 1 vote. Sitting duck Mary Landrieu — the soon-to-be former senator from Louisiana — begged her Democratic colleagues to vote for the energy-and-job-creating project but, no, the Fauxcahontas Elizabeth Warren “Green” wing of the party chose leftist sanctimoniousness over practicality.
Here’s the thing about energy: we need as much of it as we can get as cheaply as possible. Are you worried about “the environment,” “peak oil,” etc.? Then you should be an aivd supporter of fracking, the Keystone pipeline, and any other means of extracting fossil fuels from the bounty of the Earth. Why? Because what the United States needs is cheap, abundant energy, period (as the president might say). The reason is that if you want to help the downtrodden, save the environment, preserve the wetlands, and make the world safe for unbearable gasbags like Elizabeth Warren, then you need money. And to get money you need energy, lots and lots of energy. Let’s say you are interested in developing viable alternatives to carbon-based fuels: how would you do it? By basic research and an accumulation of engineering experiments.
What is the indispensable prerequisite for undertaking those tasks wholeheartedly? Money, wealth, prosperity. Without those golden keys, there is no research to speak of and little in the way of experimentation. The liberal (i.e., the wacko) wing of the Democratic Party doesn’t seem to understand that.
Or maybe it does understand it but chooses to ignore it. After all, a lack of resources does not hamper Elizabeth Warren’s movements. It merely hurts the people she pretends to serve. Air Force records show that Barack Obama charged the taxpayers $1,539,402.10 for his Labor Day travels for “fundraising, personal business, and politicking.” As Judicial Watch’s Tom Fitton put it, “This Labor Day back-and-forth shows President Obama seems to confuse Air Force One with Uber.” “
” WATCH: disturbing footage from inside Palestinian UNRWA schools. Find out what is actually being taught in UNRWA schools – schools that are funded with American and European tax dollars.
How can a generation taught from cradle to grave to hate make peace? “
Update: We have received a comment from the organization that produces these videos and would like to inform our readers that all of their videos are produced with private donations . Please give if you can and support Israel and the truth:
” It would be nice if you were to indicate that our agency produces these films with private support that we welcome so that we can produce more solid audiovisual investigations of UNRWA
Israel Resource News Agency
Center for Near East Policy Research
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Jerusalem 94581 Israel
” Mike Rowe, former host of Dirty Jobs, has come to be known as a salt of the earth type of guy. Someone the average Joe can relate to and who understands that true economic stimulation comes from folks working hard for their income and living within their means.
Apparently, Rowe can add culturally savvy marketing expert and dispenser of wisdom to his resume after completely owning a rather obnoxious liberal who was attempting to commandeer his Facebook page to promote his book in a rather unsavory manner.
Rowe’s response is simply epic.
From Mad World News:
Jim Green: It is ALARMING when we do the demographic post mortem on this election, because it is probable that it was decided by our RACISTS–voting against President Obama, who wasn’t on the ballot—that gave the Republicans their election wins—OUR GREED AND IGNORANCE, Amazon.comJim Green: Why is the media avoiding that we have a U.S. Senate bought and paid for by the Koch Bros/1%–and what they want for their dollar is to cut THEIR taxes [for pure GREED], and cut regulations to increase the bottom line [for pure GREED]….in short “OUR GREED AND IGNORANCE” [Amazon] ruled the day
Jim Green: Why on Earth would ANYONE vote Republican? A reptile has more decency than the Republicans in Congress! Only an odious toad would pass Ryan’s budget or gut Food Stamps—and these depraved snakes made them THEIR HIGHEST PRIORITY! If only one child in America goes hungry because of the Republican’s War on Children it explains why—IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO BE A CHRISTIAN, AND VOTE REPUBLICAN, Amazon/Kindle
Here’s Mr. Rowe’s response via his official Facebook page:
Hi there, Jim
Greetings, from somewhere over Colorado. It appears you’re still trying to sell some books on my Facebook page. Personally, I haven’t read them, and based on your marketing strategy, I suspect I’m probably not alone. Since part of your approach seems to involve me, I thought perhaps I might offer you some unsolicited marketing advice. I hope it’s not too presumptuous, but these tips have served me well over the years, and I can’t help but think you and your marketing team might benefit from their immediate implementation.
1. Consider starting off each blurb with a friendly salutation. In my experience, a little cordiality goes a long way, especially when you’re trying to persuade someone to give you money.
2. Think about addressing your audience as something other than “racists,” “reptiles,” and “toads.” I get that you want to be provocative, but if your goal is to sell your book, a number of well-known studies have proven it’s best not to insult your potential customers.
3. Reconsider your commitment to caps and exclamation points. These are excellent choices when warning people about a fire, a volcanic eruption, an ebola outbreak, or a looming tsunami. But I’m afraid their use in the context of a book sale implies a level of urgency that may exist only in your mind. If you really want to persuade thoughtful people that Christians can’t vote for Republicans and remain Christian, you’ll need to appear credible – not hysterical. Lower case should work just fine.
4. Consider limiting each blurb to a single entry. When you post the identical screed four times in a row, it looks very much like a broken record sounds. This will lead people to conclude that you’re either a) inept at posting, or b) deliberately obnoxious. Neither conclusion is likely to lead to a sale. Remember, most people see posts like yours as small piles of vomit that they can quickly step around. But when the same vomitus post appears multiple times, you force my friends here to slosh through a virtual lake of spew. Ironically, this will not only make more people like you even less, it will decrease the odds that someone who might actually share your world view will feel inclined to purchase your book. (I’ve deleted all of your redundant posts from this morning, but left the original. You’re welcome.)
5. Regarding your overall claim, I’m not an authority on Republicans or Christians, but last I checked, America is still populated by plenty of both. Unless you wish to alienate a majority of the country, you might consider something a tad more conciliatory. Something like – “There is no “R” in Jesus – But There’s G-O-P in Gospel!”
Finally, with respect to your “challenge,” I’m not a registered Republican, but from time to time, I have voted like one. If you really want to know why, ask me in a fashion that incorporates the aforementioned steps, and I’ll try to explain it to you.
In the meantime, GOOD LUCK WITH YOUR BOOKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!
PS. As you can see, the captain has given me some plastic wings. So clearly, I know what I’m talking about.
It seems Mr. Green was thoroughly schooled and is no doubt curled up in the fetal position somewhere sucking his thumb.
Rowe once again manages to completely annihilate this liberal nonsense without coming off as a jerk. It’s a rare gift, and it looks like America’s favorite blue collar hero is putting it to good use. “
Thanks to Young Conservatives
” Pro-Illegal alien activists are declaring victory on the White House’s Facebook page. More than that, they are specifically calling out white people.
This is the White House’s actual page, which has on it the President’s official video announcing his executive amnesty plan. And the White House is allowing racist antagonism like the comments below.
Over on Twitter, people of about the same intelligence are saying similar things, again specifically saying racist things towards whites: ”
” As Americans shop in the health insurance marketplace for a second year, President Obama is depending more than ever on the insurance companies that five years ago he accused of padding profits and canceling coverage for the sick.
Those same insurers have long viewed government as an unreliable business partner that imposed taxes, fees and countless regulations and had the power to cut payment rates and cap profit margins.
But since the Affordable Care Act was enacted in 2010, the relationship between the Obama administration and insurers has evolved into a powerful, mutually beneficial partnership that has been a boon to the nation’s largest private health plans and led to a profitable surge in their Medicaid enrollment.
The insurers in turn have provided crucial support to Mr. Obama in court battles over the health care law, including a case now before the Supreme Court challenging the federal subsidies paid to insurance companies on behalf of low- and moderate-income consumers. Last fall, a unit of one of the nation’s largest insurers, UnitedHealth Group, helped the administration repair the HealthCare.gov website after it crashed in the opening days of enrollment.”
It’s all about the cronyism with this administration . Read the rest at NY Times
- Aired: 11/18/14
- | Views: 1,746
” Nancy Pelosi goes against her legacy as an advocate for women’s voting rights and denies Rep. Tammy Duckworth the right vote by proxy in the Democratic leadership elections. (5:12) “
” Americans’ assessments of their personal freedom have significantly declined under President Obama, according to a new study from the Legatum Institute in London, and the United States now ranks below 20 other countries on this measure.
The research shows that citizens of countries including France, Uruguay, and Costa Rica now feel that they enjoy more personal freedom than Americans.
As the Washington Examiner reported this morning, representatives of the Legatum Institute are in the U.S. this week to promote the sixth edition of their Prosperity Index. The index aims to measure aspects of prosperity that typical gross domestic product measurements don’t include, such as entrepreneurship and opportunity, education, and social capital.
“ This is not a good report for Obama,” Legatum Institute spokeswoman Cristina Odone told theWashington Examiner.
In the 2010 report (which relied on data gathered in 2009), the U.S. was ranked ninth in personal freedom, but that ranking has since fallen to 21st, with several countries, including France, Germany and the United Kingdom passing the U.S. “
” Democrats have become so frustratingly useless to young people that it’s inspiring Salon writers to say semi-nice things about libertarians. Yes, my friends, perhaps the partisan apocalypse really is nigh.
In a piece at Salon today, Tim Donovan explores how millennial-voter turnout in the recent midterm elections was low, and that didn’t bode well for Democrats. He scoffs at the idea that the dismal showing had much to do with voter identification laws or other logistical barriers. Rather, Donovan suggests (as I, too, did recently) that Democratic candidates have done a crap job of focusing on issues that actually matter to young voters:
For those of us who follow “millennial issues,” this generation’s low turnout hardly came as a surprise. Last April, the Harvard Institute of Politics found something surprising while talking with young voters: considerably more young Republicans expected to vote than Democrats. Armed with this troubling data, Democratic candidates had months to adapt their messaging and court our votes. What happened? Universally, Democratic candidates didn’t bother to address the (very real, very serious) problems that are on the minds of many millennials: the racist and costly drug war, ballooning student loan debt, long-term unemployment, flat wages at shitty retail and restaurant jobs, and an imperiled climate. Democratic strategists seemed to assume that running as the Not-Republican Party would carry them to victory among young voters.
I don’t know that the issues Donovan mentions are necessarily those that excite millennials the most, nor that it’s true Democratic candidates didn’t focus on wages or climate policy this election season. But he’s certainly right that they focused much more on scaremongering about Republicans than actually setting themselves apart from them in substantive ways. Donovan continues:
Personally, I’d vote for Rand Paul for president faster than you can say “libertarian wacko” if I thought he would actually end the drug war, slash corporate welfare and plow the savings into student loan debt relief or a robust infrastructure bill. If someone like myself—a pajama-festooned, latte-sipping, liberal hipster who writes for Salon, fer chrissake–is willing to ignore party preference in favor of actual legislative gains, I can only assume that less ideologically committed millennials are even more willing to vote Republican for the right candidate or platform. “
As we’ve expressed before , Barack Obama is the greatest libertarian recruitment tool to come along in decades . With crushing debt and regulations grinding the citizenry and it’s economic motor to a halt , Obama is the perfect man at the perfect time to effect a sea-change in the political nature of generations to come . It is difficult for one to imagine a more fitting personification of “The State” than president Obama .
New CBO Study Shows That ‘The Rich’ Don’t Just Pay Their ‘Fair Share,’ They Pay Almost Everybody’s Share
” The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) just released its annual report on “The Distribution of Household Income and Federal Taxes” analyzing data through 2011 on American household’s: a) average “market income” (a comprehensive measure that includes labor income, business income, and income from capital gains), b) average household transfer payments (payments and benefits from federal, state and local governments including Social Security, Medicare and unemployment insurance), and c) average federal taxes paid by households (including income, payroll, corporate, and excise taxes). Some of the key findings of the CBO analysis are displayed in the table above, with the data organized by household income quintiles. The data in the first five rows above appear in the CBO report (from Tables 1 and 4), and rows 6-8 above have been calculated separately based on data from the first four rows in the table.
The CBO report received attention and commentary this week from John Merline at Investor’s Business Daily (“New CBO Report Explodes Tax Fairness Myths”), Reason’s Nick Gillespie (“3 Charts About Income Inequality, Transfers, and Taxes”), AEI’s Jim Pethokoukis (“Here is what’s really happening to middle-class incomes and inequality”), Heritage Foundation’s Curtis Dubay (“The Richest 1 Percent of Americans Pay 24 Percent of Federal Taxes”) and former economist Paul Krugman (“Why the One Percent Hates Obama”).
Some additional analysis and commentary will be provided here that reveal a yet-to-be discussed major implication of the CBO report – almost the entire burden: a) of all transfer payments made to American households and b) of all non-financed government spending, falls on just one group of Americans – the top one-fifth of US households by income. That’s correct, the CBO study shows that the bottom three income quintiles representing 60% of US households are “net recipients” (they receive more in transfer payments than they pay in federal taxes), the second-highest income quintile pays just slightly more in federal taxes ($14,800) than it receives in government transfer payments ($14,100), while the top 20% of American “net payer” households finance 100% of the transfer payments to the bottom 60%, as well as almost 100% of the tax revenue collected to run the federal government. Here are the details of that analysis.”
” A 57-year-old ban on silencers, the noise-suppressing devices that are used to muffle the sound of a gunshot, could be lifted this week.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission will meet this Thursday in Key Largo to discuss the issue. Advocates say the rule change would be good for a hunter’s health. According to hunters, manufacturers, and the National Rifle Association, a suppressor can protect a hunter’s hearing from the loud bang that is heard while hunting in the field or shooting at a gun range. It would also allow sportsmen to shoot near residential areas without disturbing residents. “