Saturday, November 01, 2008

On Foreign Policy, It's Ace Vs. Amateur


By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY | Posted Friday, October 31, 2008 4:20 PM PT

Election '08: In foreign policy, John McCain talks experience, and Barack Obama promises change. The latter gets support abroad, but his old and amateurish ideas are less likely to effect change than his cutting-edge rival's.

IBD Series: Obama vs. McCain — The Great Divide

Assuming both candidates intend to advance U.S. interests abroad, it bears looking at how McCain and Obama would conduct foreign policy, , that everyday diplomacy that affects how the U.S. is viewed and can influence other states.

McCain is the ace in foreign policy, not the much-applauded Obama. McCain has played pivotal roles in opening Vietnam to trade, passing the North American Free Trade Agreement and encouraging the color revolutions of Eastern Europe. He's visited most countries and knows that foreign policy works by keeping one's word first, not by projecting an ideology or personality. It will work.

Obama, by contrast, shows neither interest nor experience in foreign affairs, and defers to 300 advisers, mostly from left-wing think tanks. In the Senate, he's done nothing. He's recently traveled only to the warhorse trails of foreign policy in Europe and the Middle East, and not the emerging new democracies visited by McCain. It's inadequate and won't work.

Both candidates say they will work with partners. But how will their ideas play out?

For Obama, multilateral cooperation means reliance on the United Nations, even as dictators run U.N. operations for their own ends and the Security Council is deadlocked in the face of real threats. He'll get rolled because the U.N. system is institutionally weak.

For McCain, cooperation means supporting friends and recognizing enemies. In that realism, he proposes a new league of democracies to give free states a stronger voice. In advocating this, America increases its pool of like-minded allies to work with.

Obama, by contrast, blurs distinctions between friends and enemies. He discards coordination with allies in favor of going it alone with enemies. Example: His suggestion that he would press Iran to end its nuclear program by talking directly to its tyrants, never mind the coordinated effort with Europe now in place.

To allies, that comes across as arrogant, a faith in one's own charisma trumping the coordinated pressure. Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has already recognized its amateurism, hitting Obama with preconditions of his own for talks, while French President Nicolas Sarkozy decried Obama as "utterly immature" with "formulations empty of all content," Haaretz reported.

Obama showed the same careless disregard for allies in saying he would break the NAFTA treaty and rewrite it on his own terms, alarming not only Mexico and Canada, but other partners too.

McCain, however, grasps how foreign policy comes of consensus and spans administrations. Getting NAFTA took consensus — not only of Republicans and Democrats in Congress, but their equivalents in Mexico and Canada. He sees it to be built on, not dropped.

On human rights, both candidates say yes, and McCain has a long record to back it up. But Obama has a different point of view. Already he is using it as a weapon against America's allies, pointing the bony finger at Colombia on human rights and denying it free trade. At the same time, he downplays the atrocious human rights record of Cuba and says he will hold talks with its dictators. McCain keeps friends encouraged and enemies on notice — his rapid stance in defense of invaded Georgia last August was typical.

On global poverty, both vow to end it, but Obama's approach is outdated: doubling aid to $50 billion, as if welfare ends poverty instead of institutionalizes it. McCain proposes partnerships and trade treaties so that the poor can rise up through opportunity.

Obama's focus on personality also may affect the sinews of U.S. power — his congressional allies are proposing cutting military spending by 25%. With no military to back his plans, it's naive to think personality will trump a capacity to project power abroad.

McCain believes in the one U.S. policy that history shows has always worked: speaking softly and carrying a big stick. If defense is strong, the need to use force is low.

Only McCain's ideas are likely to enhance America's leverage and prestige abroad. Obama's proposals were last tried during the Jimmy Carter era; they left America at the nadir of its global influence. Obama's inexperience is why he defaults to such old ideas. McCain shows that experience gives you a cutting-edge awareness of what works.

Obama-Farrakhan Ties Are Close, Ex-Farrakhan Aide Says By Kenneth R. Timmerman


Saturday, November 1, 2008 2:59 PM

A former top deputy to Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan tells Newsmax that Barack Obama’s ties to the black nationalist movement in Chicago run deep, and that for many years the two men have had “an open line between them” to discuss policy and strategy, either directly or through intermediaries.

“Remember that for years, if you were a politician in Chicago, you had to have some type of relationship with Louis Farrakhan. You had to. If you didn’t, you would be ostracized out of black Chicago,” said Dr. Vibert White Jr., who spent most of his adult life as a member and ultimately top officer of the Nation of Islam.

White broke with the group in 1995 and is now a professor of African-American history at the University of Central Florida in Orlando.

White said Obama was “part of the Chicago scene” where Farrakhan, Jesse Jackson, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr. and radicals would go to each other’s events and support each other’s causes.

“Even though Chicago is the third-largest city in the country, within the black community, the political and militant nationalist community is very small. So it wouldn’t be uncommon for [Obama and Farrakhan] to show up at events together, or at least be there and communicate with each other,” White told Newsmax.

The Anti-Defamation League has denounced Farrakhan and his Nation of Islam as a “hate group.”

Farrakhan has called Jews “bloodsuckers,” “satanic” and accused them of running the slave trade. He has labeled gays as “degenerates.” In a 2006 speech, the ADL again condemned Farrakhan when he said: “These false Jews promote the filth of Hollywood that is seeding the American people and the people of the world and bringing you down in moral strength. … It's the wicked Jews the false Jews that are promoting lesbianism, homosexuality. It's wicked Jews, false Jews that make it a crime for you to preach the word of God, then they call you homophobic!"

Obama was careful to “denounce” Farrakhan’s comments – but not the man -- during the Democratic primary season earlier this year, but only after Hillary Clinton called him out for benefiting from Farrakhan’s support.

Farrakhan endorsed Obama in a videotaped speech to his followers at Mosque Miryam in Chicago in February. “You are the instruments that God is gonna use to bring about universal change, and that is why Barack has captured the youth,” Farrakhan said.

He told the crowd that Obama was the new “messiah.” See Video: Farrakhan Endorses Obama, Calls Him Messiah.

Once the news media and the Clinton campaign got hold of those comments from Farrakhan, demands mounted from all sides that Obama “renounce” Farrakhan.

But as he has done repeatedly throughout this campaign, Obama was careful to parse his words.

“You know, I have been very clear in my denunciation of Minister Farrakhan's anti-Semitic comments,” he said during one appearance on “Meet the Press.” “I think that they are unacceptable and reprehensible.”

Obama hastened to point out that Farrakhan had been praising him as “an African-American who seems to be bringing the country together. I obviously can't censor him, but it is not support that I sought. And we’re not doing anything, I assure you, formally or informally with Minister Farrakhan.”

But Obama, once again, was less than candid.

In 1995, according to a profile of Obama that appeared in the Chicago Reader newspaper, Obama “took time off from attending campaign coffees to attend October’s Million Man March in Washington, D.C.”

At the time, Obama was running for the Illinois Senate from Chicago’s South Side, a seat he won after getting surrogates to challenge the signatures on nominating petitions for his chief rival, the incumbent Alice Palmer.

The march, which fell far short of attracting the million men it advertised, was organized by Farrakhan and by Obama’s then-pastor, the anti-white black nationalist Wright.

Obama spoke at length with the Chicago Reader upon his return from the Million Man March. “What I saw was a powerful demonstration of an impulse and need for African-American men to come together to recognize each other and affirm our rightful place in the society," he said.

“These are mean, cruel times, exemplified by a ‘lock ’em up, take no prisoners’ mentality that dominates the Republican-led Congress,” Obama said.

“Historically, African-Americans have turned inward and towards black nationalism whenever they have a sense, as we do now, that the mainstream has rebuffed us, and that white Americans couldn't care less about the profound problems African-Americans are facing."

“Black nationalism” is a current of thought and political action in the African-American community that has been championed by the likes of Farrakhan, Wright, Malcolm X, the Black Panthers and Khalid al-Mansour. Obama discussed his attraction to black nationalism at length in his 1995 memoir “Dreams of My Father.”

Obama further parsed his words in a Feb. 25, 2008, presentation to a Jewish community meeting in Cleveland, Ohio, where he insisted that Wright “does not have a close relationship with Louis Farrakhan.”

And yet, just months earlier, Wright’s Trumpet magazine gave Farrakhan its Lifetime Achievement Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr. Trumpeter Award, saying that Farrakhan “truly epitomized greatness.”

That award was the fruit of a long and deep relationship between the two men, White told Newsmax. In 1984, Wright accompanied Farrakhan on his much-criticized trip to meet Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi, at a time when Gadhafi was considered an enemy of the United States.

Wright also accompanied Farrakhan and Jackson to Syria in 1986, where they successfully negotiated with Syrian strongman for the release of downed American pilot Robert O. Goodman.

Obama’s Speaking Style

In addition to the ideological affinity Obama expressed for the black nationalist movement, White believes that Obama owes much of his success as a public orator to speaking techniques that Farrakhan developed over the years, and exploited for years to great success.

“If you listen to the rhetoric and you take away Obama’s political jargon, you hear a religious tenor to it that is very much Nation of Islam-like. I don’t know if anyone has ever touched on it, but Obama’s speaking style is very Malcolm-like, very Farrakhan-like,” White said.

Any American who has listened to early radio or television interviews of Obama can hear how dramatically Obama’s speaking style has changed since he became a United States senator.

In clips dating from 2001 and even early 2004, Obama speaks haltingly and in long, rambling sentences packed with legalese and dense pseudo-academic rhetoric. But not today.

“As a former minister of the Nation of Islam, I know how they speak,” White told Newsmax. “I don’t know who was training Obama. But that style is not a ministerial style like in the Christian church. It’s a Nation of Islam style.”

White began in the late 1970s as a foot soldier in the Fruit of Islam, the military branch of Farrakhan’s Black Muslim group, then rose to become a minister of the Nation of Islam and a top deputy to Farrakhan himself.

Known initially as Brother Vibert L.X., and later as Minister V.L. Muhammad, he parted ways with Farrakhan not long after the Million Man March, after nearly 25 years within the organization.

White’s 2002 book “Inside the Nation of Islam” prompted death threats by Farrakhan loyalists, so he left Illinois and moved to Florida to teach at the University of Central Florida.

He told Newsmax that Obama’s remarkable speaking style, even his manner of standing at a podium to appear larger than life, is directly copied from Farrakhan.

“If the Nation of Islam can’t do anything else, it can train people how to speak. And nobody can outspeak a Muslim minister,” he said.

Earlier this year, a pro-Clinton blog run by former CIA officer Larry Johnson unearthed a 2004 photograph showing Michelle Obama and Farrakahn’s wife, Mother Khadijah Farrakhan, at an event hosted by Jackson’s Citizenship Education Foundation.

Newsmax queried Obama’s U.S. Senate office, his Chicago office and his campaign press office about his ties to Farrakhan, but did not receive a reply.

Ever since he appeared before the annual policy conference of the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee in June, Obama has attempted to convince the Jewish community that he is pro-Israel.

But his longstanding ties to Farrakhan, Wright and Palestinian activist Rashid Khalidi, among others, have disturbed many Jewish community leaders.

Sen. John McCain publicly chastised The Los Angeles Times on Thursday for not releasing a videotape the newspaper said it possessed of a 2003 dinner for Khalidi, where Obama reportedly accused Israel of carrying out a “genocide” against the Palestinians.

2008 Presidential Candidate Summaries Volume VII

John Sydney McCain

Barack Hussein Obama

2008 Presidential Spouse Summaries Volume VII

Cindy McCain

Michelle Obama

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Hawaiian officials admit withholding Obama's original BC


by Israel Insider on November 1, 2008 at 11:30am

Now it's pretty apparent why Barack Obama made his sudden, last minute visit to Honolulu. It wasn't Granny's health problems that interested him but Hawaii's Health Department.

The strategy may have backfired. A statement by Hawaiian officials Friday that they have seen but won't release an "original" birth certificate that has never been released raises more questions than it answers. It undercuts the indignant claims of Obama spokesmen and supporters that the "birth certificate" has been published for months, and the ridicule and claims of "smear" that the Obama camp has made against anyone claiming otherwise.

Image: the "certification of live birth" claimed by Obama campaign as his "birth certificate"

According to an AP report, Hawaii Health Department Director Dr. Chiyome Fukino said Friday that she and the registrar of vital statistics, Alvin Onaka, have personally verified that the health department holds Obama's original birth certificate.

But they won't say one word about what's on it.

Conspicuously, Hawaiian officials refuse to confirm that the information on the "original" certificate conforms to what has appeared on the "Certification of Live Birth" produced in 2007 that has so far been passed off as original by the Obama "Fight the Smears" site (here) and the Annenberg-backed site (here). The latter dedicated a photoshoot to examining in pornographic detail a computer-generated facsimile that may bear no relation to the original document that the State of Hawaii now admits holding.

Can anyone smell "red herring"?

All of the obfuscation, which has been going on for more than four months, begs the question that the Obama campaign and its media supporters have steadfastly refused to answer: why won't the original birth certificate be released?

Why can't the Obama campaign do as the McCain campaign did, and release the original, typewritten document that the State of Hawaii, finally and in the last days before the election, admits exists in its "vaults"? What could be so damaging or contradictory that Obama has felt the need to keep hidden all these years and has created elaborate cover-ups to put forward computer-abstracted certification of live certificate instead of the original birth certificate?

Fukino says that no state official, including Governor Linda Lingle, ever instructed that Obama's birth certificate be handled differently. But state officials, including Lingle's office, have consistently refused media requests for the release of the document, saying that only Obama himself, or a close family number, was authorized to have access to the "original" certificate. She says state law bars release of a certified birth certificate to anyone who does not have a tangible interest.

Apparently that does not include the American People.

And yet Obama claimed in his memoir Dreams from my Father that he had in his possession his birth certificate. Unless the document has been "lost," he could publish the original without visiting grandma in Honolulu.

Trumpeting victory in Hawaii's admission that a suppressed "original" birth certificate exists is Chicago-based journalist Andy Martin, a long time nemesis of Obama, whose trip to Hawaii preceded the candidate's. (Obama arrived just as Martin left). Martin takes credit for forcing the State's hand in a press release:

Obama has falsely claimed to have placed the "original" on the Internet. has falsely claimed to have seen this document and posted it on the Internet; that is not true. CNN has falsely ridiculed Martin. Hawai'i officials have now refuted Obama's false assertion.

Martin's victory in Honolulu will roil the final weekend of the presidential campaign. Internet chatter is expected to explode as the issue moves to the front page over Saturday and Sunday. Swing voters may be swayed by the exposure that Obama has brazenly been lying to the American people. "We just lobbed a grenade into the final weekend of the presidential campaign," says Andy.

"I am ecstatic. I called Obama a liar. I called '' I said CNN was sloppy and lazy and wrong. And I was right. The State of Hawai'i has now backed me up. Whew. I knew I was right, but I feel a lot more comfortable knowing that I have started to get the machinery moving in state government. The original document is now obviously protected and safe from any tampering by Obama.

"My lawsuit started a firestorm in Hawai'i. The circuit judge has set a hearing for November 18th (a report in the Honolulu Advertiser for November 1st for an earlier hearing date of November 7th is inaccurate; that date was cancelled).

"CNN also has egg on its face, because, once again, Hawai'i backs my contention that the original document has never surfaced in public. CNN tried to demean me by contradicting my accurate claim.

"Now Obama, and CNN have been exposed as liars. I said there was a 'secret,' original, typewritten birth certificate that had never been disclosed, and that document was the original COLB, not the phony 'original' that CNN placed before its viewers.

Martin, who has advanced the theory that the candidate has suppressed the original certificate because it would show that his father is not in fact Barack Hussein Obama, Sr., claims that Frank Marshall Davis -- a high profile Communist and journalist that Obama II referred to in his memoirs only as "Frank" -- is in fact Obama's father.

Martin has a court date in Hawaii on his demand to release the original birth certificate in the public interest scheduled for November 18, 2008. He has scheduled a press conference for today (Saturday, November 1).

2008 Presidential Campaign Summaries Volume VII



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Friday, October 31, 2008

McCain's Saddleback Grand Slam by Jed Babbin



Barack Obama bumped into something hard on Saturday night. The nuanced naif of Illinois preceded -- in Paris Hilton’s wonderful snark -- the “wrinkly white-haired dude” in Pastor Rick Warren’s civility summit and came up very short.

You can judge how well McCain did by the minimalist coverage in the media. The highlights reported here were virtually ignored in the Sunday papers.

McCain has never been better. His self deprecation, his humor, and his life story turned the back-to-back interviews into a conclusive demonstration that he is ready for the presidency and Obama isn’t.

McCain was energized, comfortable and quietly eloquent in explaining why his life proves the most important of qualities in a president: character and core beliefs. Obama -- consistently charming and shallow -- demonstrated neither of those qualities.

John McCain was a prisoner of the North Vietnamese for more than five years. Researching an article four years ago on John Kerry’s antiwar activities during many of those same years, I interviewed more than a half-dozen of McCain’s fellow POWs. Each of them, in much the same words, said “I wouldn’t be alive today but for the personal courage of John McCain.”

That courage was explained, calmly, by McCain when Warren asked him to describe the most difficult “gut-wrenching” decision in his life.

McCain answered, “It was long ago and far away in a prison camp in North Vietnam. My father was a high ranking admiral. The Vietnamese came and said that I could leave prison early. And we had a code of conduct that said you only leave by order of capture. I also had a dear and beloved friend who was from California by the name of Ed Alvarez who had been shot down and captured a couple years before me. But I wasn't in good physical shape. In fact I was in rather bad physical shape.”

“So I said no. Now, in interest of full disclosure, I'm very happy I didn't know the war was going to last for another three years or so. But I said no. And I'll never forget. The high-ranking officer who offered it slammed the door and the interrogator said go back to your cell, it's going to be very tough on you now. And it was. But [it was] not only the toughest decision I ever made but I'm most happy about that decision than any decision I've ever made in my life. It took a lot of prayer. It took a lot of prayer.”

In answer to the same question, the best Obama could do was to claim his decision to oppose the war in Iraq was his toughest. How that was a gut-wrenching decision he didn’t explain. Given the fact that his campaign for the Democratic nomination succeeded because that “decision” gave Obama a huge advantage among the anti-war liberals who control the Democratic Party, Obama’s answer revealed political calculation, not moral courage.

McCain was presidential; Obama was a policy wonk. Warren, in the context of taxation, asked each candidate to define who is rich. Obama wandered around to conclude that a family whose income is $150,000 or less is “middle class.” McCain defined “rich” not in terms of dollar income, but in security, opportunity and freedom to choose the future of the family’s children. McCain sounded Reaganesque: “I think that rich is -- should be defined -- by a home, a good job and education and the ability to hand to our children a more prosperous and safer world than the one that we inherited.”

McCain took a full swing on question after question. Obama bunted.

Answering Warren’s question of when a baby is entitled to human rights, Obama said, “Well, I think that whether you are looking at it from a theological perspective or a scientific perspective, answering that question with specificity, you know, is above my pay grade.”

Obama said he was pro-choice. When pressed to say whether he’d ever voted to limit abortions, Obama slipped and slid around the question, claiming he was in favor of limits on late-term abortions, but cited no example of ever voting for legislation to create such limits. McCain said plainly that he believed that life beings at conception and that, “I will be a pro-life president and this presidency will have pro life policies. That's my commitment, that's my commitment to you.”

Obama defined marriage as between a man and a woman but then launched into an academic disquisition on why he wouldn’t support a Constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. He said, “I think my faith is strong enough and my marriage is strong enough that I can afford those civil rights to others even if I have a different perspective or a different view.” Obama apparently believes gay marriage is a “civil right.” McCain doesn’t.

McCain -- an attack pilot, not a lawyer -- apparently has a deeper understanding of Constitutional law than the former chief of the Harvard Law Review. He said he’d support a Constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, “…If a Federal court decided that my state of Arizona had to observe what the state of Massachusetts decided, then I would favor a Constitutional amendment.” The Full Faith and Credit clause of the Constitution compels that result. Without an amendment, any gay marriage from any state must be given legitimacy by every other state.

Saturday night, Obama’s charm failed to mask his humorlessness. McCain’s comparative charm deficit (“You know, by a strange coincidence I was not elected ‘Miss Congeniality’ in the United States Senate this year. I don't know why”) didn’t mask his sense of humor.

Asked to name a changed position, McCain gently mocked California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger by saying his new-found support for offshore drilling wouldn’t be popular with many people “here in Caleefornia.” Talking about how America needs to build more nuclear power plants, McCain said that America likes to imitate the French. Most endearingly to those of us who cannot resist poking fun at the genetically disagreeable French, McCain said, “…and by the way if you hadn't noticed we now have a pro-American president of France which proves if you live long enough anything can happen in America.”

McCain scored a lot of points with conservatives in the Saturday night forum. His performance was so strong, and if he chooses to capitalize on it, this could be a tipping point for McCain.

His next opportunity to take a big step along that path will be the choice of his running mate. Choosing a strong conservative (Fred Thompson? Mike Pence?) to run with him, McCain could energize and unite Republicans for the remainder of this campaign. 2008 need not be a disaster for Republicans. The decisions that could prove the doomsayers wrong are not above John McCain’s pay grade.

Mr. Babbin is the editor of Human Events and He served as a deputy undersecretary of defense in President George H.W. Bush's administration. He is the author of "In the Words of our Enemies"(Regnery,2007) and (with Edward Timperlake) of "Showdown: Why China Wants War with the United States" (Regnery, 2006) and "Inside the Asylum: Why the UN and Old Europe are Worse than You Think" (Regnery, 2004). E-mail him at

Thursday, October 30, 2008

McCain: The Energy Candidate


By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY | Posted Wednesday, October 29, 2008 4:30 PM PT

Energy: The gap between the presidential candidates' policies is as wide as the chasm between their parties. McCain prefers proven sources while Obama supports the fantasies pushed by environmentalists.

IBD Series: Obama vs. McCain — The Great Divide

The differences are almost as simple as saying that McCain wants to burn domestic oil and trusts the free market to provide energy, while Obama would rather watch windmills go around and around to inspire him to think of new ways for the government to get involved in the energy sector.

They are, though, a bit more nuanced than that. But not by much.

McCain and Obama debate in Nashville on October 7.

McCain and Obama debate in Nashville on October 7.

While both oppose opening Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil development, McCain is in favor of drilling in sectors of the Outer Continental Shelf that had been for years under executive and congressional moratoriums. McCain wants the drilling to be at least 50 miles from shore and the states whose coasts will be involved have to agree.

Obama, however, has merely said he will "look at" drilling, a craven sidestep by a candidate cowed by extremists, which McCain rightly called him on in the last debate.

When Obama says that we can't drill our way out of our energy problems, he is either ignorant or being dishonest. The OCS holds an estimated 115 billion barrels of oil and another 635 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. To put that in perspective, consider that the U.S. burns about 7.3 billion barrels a year. Taking what the Earth gives right off of our coasts will help us cut our imports from hostile nations and drive down prices.

The candidates have significant differences on nuclear power, as well. On this, McCain's position is clear. He has proposed building 45 new nuclear plants by 2030. They would generate enough electricity to power more than 33 million homes.

Obama's views on nuclear power are muddled. In a classic dodge, he said during the Democratic debates that "we should explore nuclear power as part of the energy mix," but he has tended to follow up this qualified support with nonsense about renewable and alternative sources.

Obama also wants to be sure nuclear energy is safe and clean before we go forward. We suggest that by merely checking the record — more than a half century of use without a single domestic death or combustion emission — Obama could clear up any questions he has.

Just as he did with drilling, Obama gives the appearance of one who favors nuclear power, yet he allows himself plenty of wiggle room to abandon his "support" in deference to environmentalists.

Anyone who thinks energy will be more plentiful and cheaper under an Obama presidency should familiarize themselves with his plan to gouge U.S. oil companies — and by extension consumers — with a Hugo Chavez-style 50% windfalls profit tax. Why can't a major-party candidate for president of the United States understand that confiscating energy company profits ruins those companies' incentives for bringing more oil to the market? If Obama would read the Congressional Research Service's study on Jimmy Carter's 1980 windfall profits tax on oil companies, he would learn that it cut domestic crude production by as much as 6% and increased imports by 8% to 16%.

Most middle-school kids will grasp, when told, the laws of supply and demand and will acknowledge that commodity prices rise when supplies fall and can't keep up with the demand. Yet the man that the media have almost elected seems unable to comprehend a basic lesson.

McCain wisely opposes a windfall profits tax on oil companies because he knows their impact — curtailed investment in exploration and additional production — would be counterproductive. The Democratic Party says McCain "refuses to crack down on profits made by oil companies." That Obama's party would treat profit as a crime that has to be cracked down on tells voters all they need to know about this and all the other issues of the 2008 presidential campaign.

The Barack Obama Con Job by Josh Greenberger


October 10, 2008

Missouri Gov. Matt Blunt issued the following statement on news reports of Barack Obama's use of Missouri law enforcement to threaten and intimidate his critics:

"St. Louis County Circuit Attorney Bob McCulloch, St. Louis City Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce, Jefferson County Sheriff Glenn Boyer, and Obama and the leader of his Missouri campaign Senator Claire McCaskill have attached the stench of police-state tactics to the Obama-Biden campaign. What Senator Obama and his helpers are doing is scandalous beyond words, the party that claims to be the party of Thomas Jefferson is abusing the justice system and offices of public trust to silence political criticism with threats of prosecution and criminal punishment. This abuse of the law for intimidation insults the most sacred principles and ideals of Jefferson." (See full article:

In addition to the above, there are mounting negative reports on Barack Obama. They include:

* Obama's Illegal Donations -

* ACORN, an Organization With Ties to Obama, Steals Votes -{E0F68C91-381A-43E8-9857-D990EFC33B34}&dist=hppr

* Obama's Ignorant and Delusional Statements, like, he's campaigned in 57 states -

* Obama's Association With Terrorist Ayers -

* Obama Tried to Stall Gis' Iraq Withdrawal -

It's mind-boggling enough to think there is anyone in this country who is willing to vote for Obama, it's even harder to understand how Obama ever reached the 50% mark in polls.

Apparently, Americans are susceptible to celebrity-type images to the point where logic and reason go out the window. If you're planning to vote for Obama, here's a quick one-question test to help you sort out whether you're choice is a logical one.

If you were looking to hire a new employee, would you hire someone with the above list of problems in his background? Even if you questioned one or two items, would you feel comfortable with that person? If your answer is yes, you're fooling yourself, you're not a businessman, or your business is going south. No one in his right mind would want to hire someone with the above background.

Yet, for some strange reason, there are people who are willing to vote such an utterly incompetent human being into the highest office of our land.

What people don't seem to realize is this election is unlike any in our history. This election really isn't about a liberal Democrat. It's about an individual who will, in all likelihood, bring this country completely down on its knees.

There is absolutely no indication that Obama is capable of carrying out any of his promises. There is nothing in Obama's background that gives us any assurance that his word even means anything, even if he were capable of bringing his promises to fruition. Yet some people are willing to stake the future of their country on someone who's substanceless speeches -- speeches that obviously do not come from experience, but from rehearsals -- "sound good?"

You know what makes a good con artist? When you can't tell the person's conning you! If he wasn't good at it, he'd never reach the level of "artist" -- he'd remain just another hapless flunky.

What's particularly astonishing is how the worse our economy gets, the higher Obama's ratings go. Why? Does anyone honestly believe someone with Obama's background is capable of doing anything to help our economy? Absolutely ridiculous!

If you think things are bad now, one year with a President Obama, I'm convinced, will totally ruin whatever is left of our great country.

John McCain may not be the Messiah we need. But what he says is honest, it comes from the heart, and it comes from experience. He has a record as a decent human being -- an extremely important component in any endeavor -- which at least allows you to have reasonable confidence that he will make every effort to help this country. You absolutely cannot say this about Obama -- you have no idea what Obama will do, you have no idea what Obama's capable of doing, you're not even sure he will not simply cater to a small portion of Americans and to hell with the rest. Are you willing to take that risk?

In a different election, McCain might not have been the perfect candidate. But in the current one McCain looks pretty damn good, and every vote for Obama is, in my opinion, another nail in the coffin of America. Don't take that chance. The country you save may be your own.

Congratulations Philadelphia Phillies! World Series Champions!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Election 2008 At This Moment Summaries

John Sydney McCain

From the 1983 movie Superman III

Barack Hussein Obama
From the 1983 movie Crackin Up

McCain's Optional Flat Tax By Dave


Apr 20th 2008 10:44AM

We're now seeing some of McCain's economic ideas, and there are some features that are getting attention. One is the optional flat tax:

Lamar Alexander has signed on and explains, (as quoted at Redstate):

The Alexander proposal calls for giving taxpayers the option of paying a flat tax, set at 19 percent for the first two years it would be in effect and at 17 percent thereafter. He said that taxpayers would need only to file a one-page form.

Most opposition to a flat tax seems to congeal around the fact that people would need to let go of their beloved home interest deductions, and other deductions as well. This deal would negate that line of attack. If the home interest deduction works for you, take it, else take the 19%. In practice it would work out that high income earners would go for this option exclusively.

Opponents would be left to argue that it is unfair that the rich pay only 20% of their income in taxes. This is not the hill I would want to die on. Most Americans have a pretty decent sense of fairness and the idea that paying 1 dollar out of every five that I make to the government as unfairly low, will seem pretty ludicrous.

This will also have the advantage of shoring up support among the pro-business Republicans, who have been sketchy over McCain's record on taxes in the past.

PHLASHBACK: John McCain on Tax Reform In 2000


Tax plan: $238B over 5 years; $500B over 10 years

McCain’s tax cut plan is valued at $238 billion over five years; and $500 billion over 10 years. Its centerpiece is an expansion of the lowest income tax bracket, the 15% bracket, to cover higher incomes.

Under the plan, the ceiling for the 15% bracket would rise to $70,000 from $43,050 for married couples filing jointly, and to $35,000 from $25,750 for single taxpayers. The effect is to give a $3,504 tax cut to a couple with taxable income of $70,000 or more.

Source: New York Times, p. 22
Feb 27, 2000

Double child tax credit; add family incentives

McCain’s tax plan would double the child tax credit to $1,000 a year, expand tax incentives for savings and investment, reduce the tax on large estates, and reduce the marriage penalty for some people increasing the standard deduction for couples. McCain would offset a portion of the tax cuts by closing corporate tax loopholes. One analysis shows most tax cuts would go to the middle class, those earning between $39,000 & $130,000. The plan would do almost nothing for taxpayers with incomes below $39,000.

Source: New York Times, p. 22
Feb 27, 2000

“Balanced approach”, and starts a flat tax system

McCain’s pitch is that his tax cut plan is modest enough in size that it leaves plenty of money from the surplus tax revenues to deal with other needs. By expanding the 15% bracket to cover millions of additional taxpayers, he says, his plan amounts to a start on creating a system of flatter tax rates.

“I want a balanced approach,” McCain says. “I put a whole lot of money into Social Security, Medicaid, and paying down the debt [and less] money into tax cuts.”

Source: New York Times, p. 22
Feb 27, 2000

Reagan Republican: simplify taxes; cut waste

    Here’s some straight talk.
  • I’m a proud Reagan Republican.
  • I’ll tear up the 44,000-page tax code that benefits special interests.
  • Stop the outrageous waste and pork barrel spending that steals your money.
  • Use the surplus to
    secure Social Security, cut middle class taxes, and pay down the debt.
  • Give me your vote, and we’ll give you back your government.

Source: Television ad, “Proud Reagan Republican”
Feb 26, 2000

Big money interests fear closing loopholes

McCain said that his proposal to eliminate provisions in the tax code that enable corporate investors to write off billions of dollars in deductions had “met with fierce opposition” from big-money interests. And, as he presses the case against loopholes in his campaign, he said the mood in that monied “establishment has gone from concern to fear.” McCain added, “Loopholes. make the tax code 44,000 pages long. And everybody agrees [it] is a cornucopia of good deals for special interests and a nightmare for average citizens.“ McCain said there was a ”direct relation“ between his tax proposal and his efforts to limit special interests’ influence in campaign finance. ”These people,“ he said, ”clearly have an excessive, inordinate influence.“

Source: Boston Globe, p. A31
Jan 30, 2000

Remove charitable deduction; it only benefits rich

McCain’s tax plan could cause charities, universities, & art museums to lose as much as $9 billion over 5 years, the Bush campaign charged. “Anything that would take money away from a charity is a step in the wrong direction,” Bush’s spokesman said.

According to McCain’s plan, people who give charitable contributions in the form of stock, real estate, bonds, or artwork could no longer take a tax deduction for the current, appreciated value of the gift. Instead, the donor could take a deduction only for the original cost of the asset. The McCain campaign describes this as closing a loophole for the very rich, while the Bush campaign says it would kill off incentives for giving.

“Wealthy Americans shouldn’t get a tax write-off for contributing a fancy painting or an overvalued stock,” said McCain’s spokesman. “Bush is protecting his wealthy donor base at the expense of the middle class.” By eliminating the deduction, the spokesman said, 25,000 additional working-class people would get a tax cut.

Source: Boston Globe, p. A12
Jan 22, 2000

Replace employer-provided benefits with a tax cut

Q: As part of your plan to pay for your tax cuts, you say we ought to eliminate what’s called employer-provided benefits to workers. Isn’t that a $40 billion tax increase? A: For the first time since President Eisenhower, we got a surplus and the question is what do you want to do with it? I want to give it to low- and middle-income Americans as a tax cut. I want to give them the benefits from this that they need that lower- and middle-income Americans need.

Source: GOP Debate in Johnston, Iowa
Jan 16, 2000

Middle-class tax cut: expand 15% tax bracket

McCain will present today his first comprehensive plan for apportioning the spoils of the nation’s current prosperity, calling for a middle-class tax cut. The plan’s centerpiece is in expansion of the 15% income tax bracket, the lowest, to cover higher income levels. It would also double the child credit, to $1,000, reduce the so-called marriage penalty paid by many two-income couples, create new tax incentives for savings, and cut the inheritance taxes on multi-million dollar estates.

His tax plan largely tracks a proposal he made last summer. New details include a proposal to pay for much of his tax cut by closing $150 billion worth of specific corporate tax loopholes over the next 5 years. Under McCain’s plan, the ceiling for the 15% tax bracket would rise to $70,000 for couples filing jointly and to $35,000 for single people. Its primary benefits would therefore go to people currently in the 28% tax bracket, couples earning over $43,050 and single people earning over $25,750

Source: New York Times, p. A21
Jan 11, 2000

Don’t promise tax cuts from future surpluses we may not have

McCAIN [to Bush]: I’m more concerned about the surplus gap [than Bush’s phrase, the “tax gap”]. It’s fiscally irresponsible to promise a huge tax cut that is based on a surplus that we may not have. My tax plan. is about the same as yours for middle-income and lower-income Americans. It places a top priority on saving Social Security. It offers a needed tax break for middle-income people and it begins paying down the national debt.

BUSH: In human terms, [a couple earning] $42,000 a year in
income, under [McCain’s] plan, will receive a $200 tax cut. Under the plan that I proposed, they receive an $1,852 tax cut. The fundamental difference is that the additional $1,600 will go to Washington under your idea. And under my idea it goes into people’s pockets. There is enough money to take care of Social Security. There’s enough money to meet the basic needs of our government and there is enough money to give the American people a substantial tax cut.

Source: Republican Debate in West Columbia, SC
Jan 7, 2000

1st step to simplify taxes: close special interest loopholes

FORBES [to McCain]: Cutting the capital gains tax is key to a prosperous future. In New Hampshire you indicated support for a flat tax and I was wondering if you might put flesh on those bones and tell us what you have in mind for tax reform?

MCCAIN: I want to thank you for your efforts on behalf of a flat tax. I think we’ve got to eliminate the marriage penalty, the earnings test, raise the 15% tax bracket, put a level of $5 million on the inheritance tax. But this tax code is 44,000 pages long. It’s an abomination. It’s a cornucopia of good deals for the special interests and it’s a nightmare for American citizens. We’ve got to get rid of the special interest loopholes that are right in this tax code. That’s the first step in cleaning it up to reach your goal of a simplified tax system. I appreciate your efforts. But until the day arrives when we remove the influence of the special interests, we’re not going to be able to achieve your goal.

Source: (cross-ref. from Forbes) Phoenix Arizona GOP Debate
Dec 7, 1999

Supports flat tax; stop complexity by special interests

Q: Do you favor a flat tax? A: Sure, I’m for a flat tax. I’m for a tax system where average Americans can fill out their tax return on a postcard and send it in and not have the fear of an audit. But do you know why the tax code is 44,000 pages long? Do you know why it’s a nightmare, a chamber of horrors for average citizens and a cornucopia of good deals for the special interests? It’s because every time we pass a tax bill we add another special loophole and a special deal for the special interests.

Source: Republican Debate at Dartmouth College
Oct 29, 1999

Keep lump-sum earned income tax credit

McCain said that Congress shouldn’t “tamper with a much-needed tax credit for working Americans” and suggested cutting special interest subsidies would be a better way to meet budget targets. McCain called the proposal an “accounting gimmick” to produce $8 billion in savings by spreading the earned income tax credit over 12 monthly payments rather than the lump sum now paid with tax refunds. “If our goal is to have lower-income Americans lifted up into the middle class, this is the wrong way to do it.”

Source: Will Lester, AP/LA Times
Oct 1, 1999

Cut marriage tax, inheritance tax, & earnings test

    I will:
  • repeal the indefensible tax penalty that punishes couples who want to get married
  • slash the inheritance tax that penalizes those who wish to leave the fruits of their labor to their children
  • end the earnings test penalty for seniors that taxes their income twice and denies them the self-respect that comes from working
  • dramatically increase the number of Americans who qualify for the lowest tax rate of fifteen percent by raising the eligible income to $70,000 per couple.

Source: Candidacy Declaration Speech, Nashua NH
Sep 27, 1999

Taxes should be flatter, lower, and simpler

McCain believes the vast majority of Americans pay an excessive amount of their hard-earned income and accumulated wealth in taxes -- at all levels of government. McCain [believes] that tax relief and smaller government go hand-in-hand. He is committed
to creating a better tax system, which is flatter, fairer, and only taxes income one time. It should be simple and reduce the time and money needed to prepare tax returns, from days to minutes, and from thousands of dollars to pennies.

Source: “Position Papers” 5/24/99
Apr 30, 1999

Voted YES on eliminating the 'marriage penalty'.

Vote on a bill that would reduce taxes on married couples by increasing their standard deduction to twice that of single taxpayers and raise the income limits on both the 15 percent and 28 percent tax brackets for married couples to twice that of singles

Bill HR.4810
; vote number 2000-215
on Jul 18, 2000

Voted YES on phasing out the estate tax ("death tax").

Vote on a bill that would eventually eliminate the tax imposed on estates and gifts by 2010 at an estimated cost of $75 billion annually when fully phased in.

Bill HR 8
; vote number 2000-197
on Jul 14, 2000

The Armey Flat Tax


Congressman Dick Armey (R-TX) has introduced the Freedom and Fairness Restoration Act (H.R. 4585). This act would reform the U.S. tax system, slash government spending and rein in federal regulation. It is the most radical reform proposal in recent memory to receive serious consideration on Capitol Hill.

Tax Reform: Trading Deductions for a Lower Tax Rate. The key element of the Armey plan is tax reform. Based on a proposal previously developed by Stanford University professors Robert Hall and Alvin Rabushka, the plan would scrap virtually all current deductions, credits, exclusions and exemptions, as well as the five current tax brackets. In their place, it would establish a single 17 percent tax rate on a much broader tax base.

The Armey plan does not promise a free lunch. Lower tax rates are possible only if the tax base is expanded by ridding the tax code of deductions and exclusions , even such popular items as the mortgage interest deduction. This means that in return for lower rates, people will have to subject more of their income to taxes. The potential for such trade-offs is shown in Figure I on the reverse side:

  • Under the current tax system, more than one-half of all personal income goes untaxed because of various deductions, exclusions and exemptions.

  • If all personal income were subject to a single, flat-rate tax, a rate of less than 10 percent would bring the federal government just as much revenue as it collects today.

A 17 Percent Tax Rate for Individuals. Armey isn't proposing to go all the way to a 10 percent tax. Generous personal exemptions under the plan prevent the rate from going below 17 percent. Taxes under the plan, however, would be low, flat and simple. For individuals, the tax base would consist of all wages, salaries and pensions.

  • From this gross income, a married couple filing jointly could deduct a personal allowance of $26,200.
  • The personal allowance would be $13,100 for single persons and $17,200 for a single head of household.

  • In addition, taxpayers could deduct $5,300 for each dependent.

  • Thus a family of four would have to earn $36,800 before it paid a penny of federal income tax.

In addition to exempting about half the households in America from any personal income tax, the Armey plan's tax system would be so simple that all taxpayers could fill out their returns on a postcard.

A 17 Percent Tax Rate for Business. Business taxes would be almost as simple. For them, the tax base would consist of total receipts less cash wages and purchases of goods, services and materials used in business, as well as all capital equipment. Companies would pay the same 17 percent tax rate as individuals on the remaining balance. As a consequence, even the largest corporations could file their tax returns on a postcard-size form.

A Tax Cut. If the Armey plan for tax simplification were completely revenue neutral, it would require a tax rate in the range of 19 to 20 percent. Establishing a rate of 17 percent, therefore, constitutes a tax cut. The loss of revenue is paid for by capping government spending,including so-called entitlements. Also, the 17 percent rate is phased in, starting at 20 percent and falling to 17 percent after three years. Thus the deficit would not rise under the Armey plan.

Abolishing the Double Taxation of Savings. All income is taxed only once in the Armey plan, in sharp contrast to our current tax system. Today we tax profits first at the corporate level and again when they are paid out to the company's owners, the shareholders, in the form of dividends. We also double tax saving relative to consumption by taxing income when it is earned and again when it earns a return. We also effectively double tax all capital income by imposing a capital gains tax on the increase in value of capital assets, even though we already tax the return on such assets (e.g., interest, dividends, rent, etc.). The Armey plan eliminates double taxation by abolishing all taxes on interest, dividends and capital gains.

There is no convincing argument for taxing capital gains, since the value of a capital asset is only a function of the return on that asset, which we already tax. This is most clearly shown in the case of bonds, which automatically rise in value when interest rates fall and fall in value when interest rates rise. Since we are already taxing interest income, it makes no sense to levy an additional tax on the bond itself, since the bond has no value without the interest. The same is true of corporate stock and commercial real estate, whose value is entirely a function of the profits or rent they generate. The failure to index the capital gains tax for inflation creates even more distortion.

Stimulating Economic Growth. Our current tax system taxes capital excessively. This discourages investment, saving and capital formation, which are the foundations of economic growth. Slower growth, in turn, reduces employment, productivity and wages. Thus all Americans ultimately pay the price for our ill-designed tax system.

For these reasons, most economists now agree that the best tax system is one that taxes consumption only. Congress has before it many other proposals that would move us in the direction of an economy-wide consumption tax. However, only the Armey plan would do so while also simplifying and reducing taxes for most Americans.

Except for those who now receive tax money from the government rather than pay it (because of the Earned Income Tax Credit), all taxpayers would pay less under the Armey plan. Moreover, even though everyone would pay the same 17 percent tax rate, because the personal allowances do not increase with income the effect is to make the tax burden progressive, although less so than at present.

Summing Up. The Armey plan is the most consistent and comprehensive tax reform proposal currently under consideration. It would eliminate the inequities of the current system, promote growth and improve fairness and simplicity. It is internally consistent and intellectually sound. It should be the starting point for all future discussions of tax reform and will, undoubtedly, be high on the agenda of the 104th Congress.

This Brief Analysis was prepared by Bruce Bartlett of the Alexis de Tocqueville Institution.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

2008 Presidential Campaign Summaries Volume VI



Backstage At The Third Presidential Debate In New York


Backstage At The Ohio and Florida Rallies


O'Reilly Factor Calls LA Times About Khalidi Video By P.J. Gladnick


October 28, 2008

If the Los Angeles Times had a video of John McCain toasting a supporter of the old South African apartheid government, does anyone think they wouldn't release it without hesitation? However, because the Times has a video [1] of Barack Obama toasting former PLO operative, Rashid Khalidi, at an Israel-bashing party that also included terrorists Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, they are now coming up with all sorts of absurd legalistic reasons as to why they can't release the video.

Charles Johnson of Little Green Footballs has posted the messages [2]between a reader and the a Los Angeles Times representative about the release of this video:

From: Readers Rep
Date: Monday, October 27, 2008 16:14
Subject: RE: Not read: The L.A. Times Suppressing Obama’s Khalidi Bash Tape?


The Times did write about the tape, so I’m not sure what you mean aboutsuppressing the video or information from the video. Here is a copy of the report about the video.

Thanks again for writing,
Jamie Gold
Readers’ Representative


If that is the case, then release the video that you have of the event and don’t merely report it. Why is the Los Angeles Times sitting on a videotape of the 2003 farewell bash in Chicago at which Barack Obama lavished praise on the guest of honor, Rashid Khalidi - former mouthpiece for master terrorist Yasser Arafat?


Thanks for your note back. It sounds as if you don’t find “mere reporting” to be enough, but The Times is not suppressing anything.

Just the opposite — the L.A. Times brought the matter to light.

Thanks again for taking the time to write.

Jamie Gold
Readers’ Representative

As Johnson stated, the Times is basically telling its readers: “No, we’re not going to release the video. Go away.” And now the Los Angeles Times has also told the O'Reilly Factor to"go away." Here is the transcript of the video [3] from yesterday's O'Reilly Factor as Bill O'Reilly explains what happened when his staff dared to request that Khalidi video:

Check four. Some are saying that zealots on the right are wrong to demand that the Los Angeles Times release a tape it says it has of Senator Obama praising a radical college professor, Rashid Khalidi, in 2002 [actually 2003]. Now we called the Times today. Apparently there's some kind of ethical problem with releasing that tape. Check believes the Times must explain all this and we'll have more on this story tomorrow. You can access the Times article which purportedly tells all about the tape on [4]. Now, is this a big deal? Check doesn't know but the folks should decide about that tape, LA Times.

Good luck getting that video, Bill. It seems the Times has found all sorts of lame excuses not to release it. Of course, if it had a damaging video about John McCain or Sarah Palin, you could measure the release time in milliseconds.

UPDATE: Just a thought here, folks, but perhaps everybody is appealing for that Khalidi video in the wrong place. The Los Angeles Times staff won't easily release that video because of their obvious bias. However, the person who actually owns the LA Times is Sam Zell. I don't know Zell's politics but I do know he definitely doesn't want to lose readers. An appeal should be made for that video directly to Sam Zell. If Zell orders the Times to post that video on its website, the hits to that newspaper would reach an all-time high. If they don't then the Times will continue to bleed readers. Sam Zell: that is the person to contact.

—P.J. Gladnick is a freelance writer and creator of the DUmmie FUnnies blog.

Joyce Comments: You may also want to try contacting Arab American Action Network (AAAN) as it was their event and they may have an audio or video of it.

Investors Flee From 'Change' Obama Hypes


By JACK KEMP AND PETER FERRARA | Posted Monday, October 27, 2008 4:30 PM PT

Are Barack Obama's proposed tax increases adversely affecting our financial markets? We say yes, unambiguously. The senator has done a masterful job distracting attention from his tax increases with his $500-per-worker tax credit supposedly for 95% of Americans.

Obama has also set forth more than half a dozen additional refundable income tax credits targeted to low- and moderate-income workers for child care, education, housing, welfare, retirement, health care and other social purposes.

These tax credits are devised to phase-out based on income, which will ultimately increase marginal income tax rates for middle-class workers. In other words, as you earn more, you suffer a penalty in the phase-out of these credits, which has the exact effect of a marginal tax rate increase. That harms, rather than improves, the economy.

With the bottom 40% of income earners not paying any federal income taxes, such tax credits would not reduce any tax liability for these workers. Instead, since they're refundable, they would involve new checks from the federal government.

These are not tax cuts as Obama is promising. They are new government spending programs buried in the tax code and estimated to cost $1.3 trillion over 10 years.

Obama argues that while these workers do not pay income taxes, they do pay payroll taxes. True, but his planned credits do not involve cuts in payroll taxes. They are refundable income tax credits designed to redistribute income and "spread the wealth."

Meantime, Obama has proposed effective tax increases of 20% or more in the two top income-tax rates, phasing out the personal exemptions and all itemized deductions for top earners, as well as raising their tax rates.

He wants a 33% increase in the tax rates on capital gains and dividends, an increase of 16% to 32% in the top payroll tax rate, reinstatement of the death tax with a 45% top rate, and a new payroll tax on employers estimated at 7% to help finance his health insurance plan. He's also contending for higher tariffs under his protectionist policies.

Finally, he would increase corporate taxes by 25%, though American businesses already face the second-highest marginal tax rates in the industrialized world, thus directly harming manufacturing and job creation while weakening demand for the dollar.

Obama argues disingenuously that his tax increases would only affect higher-income workers and "corporate fat cats." But it is precisely these top marginal tax rates that control incentives for savings, investment, entrepreneurship, business expansion, jobs and economic growth. While he wants to tax the rich, the burden will fall on the poor and the middle class.

In their new book, "The End of Prosperity," Art Laffer, Steve Moore and Peter Tanous argue that the threat of this tax tsunami is already destabilizing our financial markets and causing capital flight from America.

They write, "Hot capital is escaping over the borders out of the United States and flowing into China, India, Europe, and even Japan. . . Starting in late 2007, foreigners started pulling their money out of the United States, and Americans started investing more abroad. Global investors are losing confidence in the U.S."

The American economy was in shambles when Reagan entered office in 1981. Inflation had soared by 25% over the prior two years, unemployment was heading toward 10%, the prime interest rate hit 21%, poverty was on a 33% upswing and real family income had decreased by almost 10% due to the stagflation of the late 1970s.

Reagan cut the top income-tax rate from 70% to 50%, adopted an additional 25% across-the-board rate cut and sliced capital gains taxes in half. The 1986 tax reform left us with just two tax rates of 15% and 28%. Reagan slashed spending growth, lowered tariffs, reduced regulatory burdens and promoted anti-inflation monetary policies.

The result, the authors explain, was actually a 25-year, noninflationary economic boom, with only two brief, mild recessions in 1990 and 2001. "We call this period, 1982-2007, the 25-year boom — the greatest period of wealth creation in the history of the planet," they write. "Adjusting for inflation, more wealth was created in America in the 25-year boom than in the previous 200 years."

By 1989, the economy had grown by almost one-third, the equivalent of adding the entire economy of West Germany to our U.S. economy. In 1984 alone, real economic growth boomed by 6.8%, the highest in 50 years. Nearly 20 million new jobs were created in the 1980s, increasing U.S. civilian employment by almost 20%. Unemployment fell to 5.3% by 1989.

Spectacularly, inflation was slashed to 3.2% by 1983. The prime rate fell to 6.25% by 1992, even though opponents had argued that Reagan's tax cuts would increase interest rates. Family income reversed its decline, poverty reversed its rise and tax revenues actually doubled.

This is the "Change We Need" today.

The Real Obama


By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY | Posted Monday, October 27, 2008 4:20 PM PT

Election '08: Barack Obama's "spread the wealth" remark to Ohio's Joe the Plumber was a rare peek at the radical behind the guarded rhetoric. A newly-unearthed 2001 radio interview provides full view.

Read More: Election 2008

The real, unguarded Barack Obama has been exposed, and Americans should hear it for themselves before they make the most consequential electoral decision of their lifetime.

Speaking to Chicago public radio station WBEZ seven years ago, then-Illinois state Sen. Obama reflected on the history of the civil rights movement.

"Where the movement succeeded," he said, "was in court-imposed remedies regarding segregation and voting rights."

But where it failed was that "the Supreme Court never ventured into the issues of redistribution of wealth and sort of more basic issues of political and economic justice in this society."

The man now a week away from possibly being elected president then lamented that "the civil rights movement became so court-focused" that it veered away from action to "put together the actual coalitions of power through which you bring about redistributive change, and in some ways we still suffer from that."

"Redistributive change" — so that's the kind of "change we need" and "change we can believe in" that a President Obama would give America. Exactly as he told Joe the Plumber.

It's pretty hard to spin a term as obvious as "redistributive change," but the Obama campaign is doing its desperate best. He was actually defending conservative legal principles, an Obama legal adviser absurdly told the Politico Web site.

The 2001 interview also finds an unwary Obama saying the Supreme Court under Chief Justice Earl Warren — which in Warren's 1953-to-1969 tenure was the most activist and power-grabbing in U.S. history — "wasn't that radical" because "it didn't break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution, at least as it has been interpreted."

Asked by a caller about further "reparative economic work" from the federal courts, Sen. Obama replied that he was "not optimistic about bringing about major redistributive change through the courts," but that "any three of us sitting here could come up with a rationale for bringing about economic change through the courts."

As president, however, "economic change through the courts" would be only a Supreme Court appointment or two away, supported by dozens of Obama's lower-court appointments.

Congress too is eagerly getting ready to enact "redistributive change." Last week, top House Democrats discussed taxing Americans' pretax contributions to 401(k) plans, with the promise of tens of billions of dollars in new government revenues every year — plus forcing workers to invest in government debt, shifting trillions of dollars from private savings to government control.

Could that be part of what Obama meant in Colorado this weekend when he warned, "make no mistake . . . we will all need to sacrifice"? Was it part of what running mate Joe Biden meant last week when he said of corporate executives, "their pensions go first"? Do workers' pensions then "go" next?

Too many Americans think this radical urban organizer is just another Clinton or Gore. But a vote for Obama is a vote for socialist "spreading of wealth," as Obama admitted to Joe the Plumber, and a vote for "major redistributive change," as he put it in 2001.

No Friend Of Israel


By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY | Posted Monday, October 27, 2008 4:20 PM PT

Election '08: Barack Obama tells Israel's supporters he's on their side. But he's using the playbook of Yasser Arafat, the Palestinian terrorist who said one thing to the West and another to the radicals who supported him.

Read More: Election 2008 | Middle East & North Africa

As far as we know, Obama never met or publicly supported Arafat. But in 2003 he did attend a farewell party for an Arafat associate. Peter Wallsten reported in April in the Los Angeles Times that Obama was at an event held as a tribute for Rashid Khalidi, an "internationally known scholar, critic of Israel and advocate for Palestinian rights" who was leaving Chicago for a job in New York.

Khalidi has not been accused of terrorism. But it's alleged that he has links to the Palestine Liberation Organization, which has a terrorist pedigree, and he does hold some rather virulent views on Israel, calling it a racist state.

While he has publicly opposed attacking Israeli civilians, Khalidi does, according to accounts of a speech he made to the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, have a different view of "the ones who are armed, the ones who are (Israeli) soldiers, the ones who are in occupation" of Palestinian lands, because "that's resistance."

Whether the Khalidi farewell was a "Jew-bash," as one blog labeled it, is not evident, as the video that Wallsten was apparently working from won't be released to the public.

But Wallsten revealed enough by writing that Obama was a "frequent dinner companion" of Khalidi and has been present at events, such as the farewell party for Khalidi, "where anger at Israeli and U.S. Middle East policy was freely expressed."

At that function, one speaker said that if Palestinians cannot secure their own land, "then you will never see a day of peace." Another, Wallsten wrote, "likened 'Zionist settlers on the West Bank' to Osama bin Laden."

This is the sort of company that Obama keeps. It's no surprise, though, because Obama has surrounded himself with racist, anti-American ministers (Jeremiah Wright, Michael Pfleger), an unrepentant terrorist (Bill Ayers, who has links to Khalidi through a foundation he and Obama worked on together), radical groups (ACORN, the New Party) and a convicted felon (Tony Rezko).

In addition to dining often with him, Khalidi held a fundraiser for Obama's failed 2000 congressional campaign. He knows the Illinois senator well enough to say that he's "the only candidate who has expressed sympathy for the Palestinian cause."

This should be enough for Obama supporters who stand behind Israel to rethink their vote. Those concerned about honesty and integrity should do the same, since Obama has sworn to be a friend of Israel.

Obama's deception reminds us of the way that Arafat tolerated Israel when talking to the Western media, but had the tongue of a terrorist when speaking in Arabic to radical Palestinian elements. Arafat said what he needed to say to keep his position of power. Obama will say anything to get elected, and then do another to achieve his goal of cutting off oxygen to Israel, the only freely elected government and U.S. friend in the region, outside of the newly formed Iraq.

From Across the Pond - Palin & Thatcher, McCain, Reagan and Obama By Constitutional Conservative


September 9, 2008

It would seem that it is only sexist to trash a woman candidate if she is a Woman Candidate, which is to say a liberal.

The London Telegraph notes what liberals in the US state openly — Palin doesn’t represent women because she’s not a liberal. It seems only liberals can represent womens issues, and women only care about liberal issues. Anyone daring to utter a thought against the pro-abortion, all the time position becomes anathema to “womens issues”.

The Telegraph compares Governor Palin to Margaret Thatcher in that the elites simply don’t understand either one — those in the “flyover” states liberal elites have such contempt for represent mainstream America, Republican and Democrat. Sure, some differences on policy exist, but love of country, family values, duty, and personal responsibility are the same for southern Democrats and conservatives alike — and it’s that foundation people want, in spite of the elites wishes.

The Republican party began losing when they abandoned small-town values and teamed with the big-government big-spending control-your-life elites of the Democratic party, casting true conservatives over the edge of the cliff (while asking for donations before citizens hit the rocky cliffs below), and even worse attempting to purge conservatives from the party which founded it — don’t make the mistake the Republican party bears any resemblance to its conservative roots. Conservatives are in the Republican party, but not all Republicans are conservatives.

If Republicans want to make a comeback, they need to move back to the values which made them popular in the first place. It’s interesting after Sarah Palin was introduced as the VP, fundraising sky-rocketed. Why? It’s an admission Republicans lost their way over the last years, and it’s time for a change in direction — back to middle-American values (the “flyover” states) as those voters (Republican AND Democratic) look for someone who relates to them, and doesn’t treat them like mindless sheep needing direction from the One.

But allow the Telegraph to continue:

They hunt with guns from childhood. They talk about sin (and redemption) in ways that embarrass the urban elite, and they regard patriotism as a fundamental part of their moral code. (It is the liberals’ ambivalence about patriotism that they detest most.)

Like Margaret Thatcher before her, Mrs. Palin is coming in for both barrels of Left-wing contempt: misogyny and snobbery. Where Lady Thatcher was dismissed as a “grocer’s daughter” by people who called themselves egalitarian, Mrs Palin is regarded as a small-town nobody by those who claim to represent “ordinary people”.

What the metropolitan sophisticates failed to understand in the 1980s when Thatcher won election after election is even more the case in the US: most (and I do mean most) ordinary people actually believe in the basic decencies, the “small-town values”, of family, marital fidelity, and personal responsibility. They believe in and honour them — even if they do not manage to uphold them.

Middle America — of which Alaska is spiritually, if not geographically, a part — builds its life around those ideals and regards commonplace moral lapses as part of the eternal struggle to be good.

The life of small-town USA is based on the principles of those Protestant colonial settlers who founded the nation: hard work, self-improvement, personal faith and family devotion. Mrs Palin speaks to and for them in a way that patronising “liberal” elitists find infuriating.

For the last few years the Republican party attempted to eliminate all vestiges of conservatism from its platform and ranks. Yet no matter how hard they worked, a small spark of true conservatism remained which stubbornly refused to go along with the big-government big-spending in-your-face elites.

Many “Republicans” attempt to wrap themselves in the mantle of Reagan, and then switch personality upon election, remove the mask, and act just like any member of the elites. Republicans keep looking for the next Reagan, but allow the guy who would know (Michael Reagan) to weigh in:

I’ve been trying to convince my fellow conservatives that they have been wasting their time in a fruitless quest for a new Ronald Reagan to emerge and lead our party and our nation. I insisted that we’d never see his like again because he was one of a kind.

I was wrong!

Wednesday night I watched the Republican National Convention on television and there, before my very eyes, I saw my Dad reborn; only this time he’s a she.

And what a she!

In one blockbuster of a speech, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin resurrected my Dad’s indomitable spirit and sent it soaring above the convention center, shooting shock waves through the cynical media’s assigned spaces and electrifying the huge audience with the kind of inspiring rhetoric we haven’t heard since my Dad left the scene.

Much has been made of the fact that she is a woman. What we saw last night, however, was something much more than a just a woman accomplishing something no Republican woman has ever achieved. What we saw was a red-blooded American with that rare, God-given ability to rally her dispirited fellow Republicans and take up the daunting task of leading them — and all her fellow Americans — on a pilgrimage to that shining city on the hill my father envisioned as our nation’s real destination.

In a few words she managed to rip the mask from the faces of her Democratic rivals and reveal them for what they are — a pair of old-fashioned liberals making promises that cannot be kept without bankrupting the nation and reducing most Americans to the status of mendicants begging for their daily bread at the feet of an all-powerful government.

Like Ronald Reagan, Sarah Palin is one of us. She knows how most of us live because that’s the way she lives. She shares our homespun values and our beliefs, and she glories in her status as a small-town woman who put her shoulder to the wheel and made life better for her neighbors.

Her astonishing rise up from the grass-roots, her total lack of self-importance, and her ordinary American values and modest lifestyle reveal her to be the kind of hard-working, optimistic, ordinary American who made this country the greatest, most powerful nation on the face of the earth.

Sarah Palin didn’t go to Harvard, or fiddle around in urban neighborhood leftist activism while engaging in opportunism within the ranks of one of the nation’s most corrupt political machines, never challenging it and going along to get along, like Barack Obama.

Instead she took on the corrupt establishment in Alaska and beat it, rising to the governorship while bringing reforms to every level of government she served in on her way up the ladder.

McCain/Palin — the Maverick ticket.

These aren’t the Republicans you thought you knew. And it’s about time — we’ve been waiting.

Conservatives have waited for a change in direction in the Republican party for quite some time. President Bush may be a Republican, but he’s no conservative. Instead, President Bush and like-minded Republicans took for granted conservatives as they joined forces with elites. But no more.

McCain has always been known to go against the party, and the more information coming out on Palin shows she’s just as much an in-your-face to the Republican party as he is (an 80% approval rating for the Palinator doesn’t hurt either). Neither is perfect, but at least they’re willing to take on the establishment and go against party loyalty when required. Conservatism is coming back, and that’s what has the left running so scared.

As Lanny Davis (Former White House Counsel who worked for the Clintons) says about McCain:

But I have changed my mind about one thing: His decision reinforces the most effective theme he can run on — his sometimes persona as a maverick, a tough leader with a stubborn mind of his own, and with a thick skin to take the heat to pursue the beat of his own internal drummer. And given his POW experience and incredible courage during that ordeal, that is some internal drummer he has.

It’s time for conservatives and mainstream America to have their voice heard; the leftist elites never understand the average American, and Republicans for too long have ignored the middle American values which gave them power in the first place. But McCain/Palin have a chance to bring back main street values to politics, as McCain’s speech ended:

I’m not running for president because I think I’m blessed with such personal greatness that history has anointed me to save our country in its hour of need.

My country saved me, and I cannot forget it. And I will fight for her for as long as I draw breath, so help me God.

My friends, if you find faults with our country, make it a better one. If you’re disappointed with the mistakes of government, join its ranks and work to correct them. Enlist in our Armed Forces. Become a teacher. Enter the ministry. Run for public office. Feed a hungry child. Teach an illiterate adult to read. Comfort the afflicted. Defend the rights of the oppressed.

Our country will be the better, and you will be the happier, because nothing brings greater happiness in life than to serve a cause greater than yourself.

I’m going to fight for my cause every day as your president. I’m going to fight to make sure every American has every reason to thank God, as I thank him, that I’m an American, a proud citizen of the greatest country on Earth. And with hard work — with hard work, strong faith, and a little courage, great things are always within our reach.

Fight with me. Fight with me. Fight for what’s right for our country. Fight for the ideals and character of a free people. Fight for our children’s future. Fight for justice and opportunity for all.

Stand up to defend our country from its enemies. Stand up for each other, for beautiful, blessed, bountiful America. Stand up, stand up, stand up and fight.

Nothing is inevitable here. We’re Americans, and we never give up.

Country first, not elites. We can make our own decisions, thank you. We can decide how best to spend our money. We can decide what’s best for our children — without help from the nanny government.

Perhaps the most overused line is “this election is the most important in history”. Yes, it’s important, but the Union won’t end if the reincarnation of Jimmy Carter (Obama) takes over for four years. We lived though the Carter Administration’s bumbling of foreign policy (Iran hostage crisis), bizarrely strange economic policy (windfall profits tax, wage and price controls), and even more bizarre crazy energy policy (”wear a sweater”).

Is it possible that America really wants to return to those depressing days of gas lines and leisure suits? Of malaise and shock over the aggressiveness of America’s enemies? The days when the policies Obama is advocating raised unemployment rates, interest rates and inflation rates into the double digits? When America’s enemies looked the President of the United States in the eye — and found he really wanted to kiss them on the cheek?

Obama’s windfall profits tax idea? A Jimmy Carter biggie. “Unless we tax the oil companies, they will reap huge and undeserved windfall profits,” fumed Carter on national television in 1980. The New York Times agreed, warning darkly that “legislators who sit by idly while oil profits soar will have to answer to the voters.”

With Democrats controlling Congress they got their way. As if on cue, oil production — fell. To the tune of 1.6 billion fewer barrels. America’s dependence on foreign oil rose. Eventually even the Times was agreeing the tax had to be repealed, and by 1988 Reagan, who campaigned against it, signed the repeal (by a Democrat Congress no less) into law. And Obama wants to do this all over again? Yes. It’s not only not a new idea, it’s not a better idea. Yet in terms of Obama, most tellingly it was a Carter idea.

The Union will survive another Carter administration. Perhaps not thrive, but survive. The country lived through Jimmy Carter I, it can live through Jimmy Carter II, the sequel.

The failing fledging flopping Carter Administration lead to the Reagan Revolution and staggering economic prosperity and growth. But before Reagan took office, remember how bleak it was? Gas lines and shortages, increasing energy costs, wage and price controls, “wear a sweater”, hostage crisis, and so on — those living through it will never forget the dark years. And now a group (many of whom didn’t live through Carter I) desire to live through Carter II? Been there, done that. It didn’t work the first time, and wrapping failed polices in “change” banners won’t make it work this time around either. Those failing to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

Unfortunately the memory of people is short-lived, and many weren’t even alive during the Carter Administration’s failures. It’s for that reason those mistakes are brought to the surface again, denying the failures of the past, and attempting to try the same old failed polices yet again.

However, history demonstrates after a failure of liberal policies, people remember why past generations voted conservative. Thus, win or lose in November, McCain/Palin have already won — and that’s what has the liberal elites scared, and why the mean and nasty attacks will continue as they attempt to destroy them. It’s not just due to policy differences, they know if conservatism makes a comeback the liberal elites will be out of power for years — maybe decades.

Sarah Palin is under 50 and could influence politics for 30 or more years. That’s the reason they’re trying to dig up any dirt they can, no matter if it’s true or not — the Palinator is quite a threat to the left and since they can’t compete on ideas (which appeal to the vast majority of mainstream America), they’re left with nothing but mean attacks.

But we’re on the verge of reliving past mistakes — by all accounts Jimmy Carter was a nice guy, with basically a good heart. Unfortunately, he was completely overwhelmed by the Presidency, with the country paying the price for his flopping and attempts at on-the-job training. Even though Carter’s mistakes led to the Reagan Revolution, must we relive the failures to heed the lessons? We hope not.

Will history repeat itself again? Or will the lessons learned from the past be heeded? We’ll know in a few months.