Well, we’ve made it this far.
I usually try to stay away from predicting election outcomes because often I let my optimism get in the way. This time however, I think my expectations are realistic. If you have been paying any attention at all to your newspaper or television over that last few months, you know that Republicans are predicting huge gains in the midterm elections. Pundits predict Republican takeover of the House and recent polls indicate that the Senate might not be out of reach either. After two years in the shadows, Republicans appear poised to return to relevancy.
I’m intrigued to see how Republicans handle having a hand on the steering wheel instead of being relegated to the back seat. I hope Democrats in Congress and the White House will realize that this is a statement from America that their change was not the right kind of change- we need reform that goes beyond reacting to symptoms of dysfunction (I’m looking at you health care bill), we need to attack the dysfunction itself.
House Republicans are already talking about slashing $100 billion in Federal spending from the budget if they gain power in November. It’s a nice gesture, but it’s mostly a political ruse to get people into the polls. $100 billion doesn’t represent the kind of change necessary to begin to fix the problem with America.
The majority of the problems facing America right now come back to one thing: poor fiscal planning and an abuse of power by government in regards to money. Imagine this: you’re playing a game with your brother with a fixed set of rules. The game is set up so you are trying to beat the game, rather than each other, but your individual actions still affect each other. It’s your brother’s turn and he decides to try something new: he changes the rules so that he can arbitrarily change the value and amount of the game money to suit his needs. He doesn’t have to ask you and he certainly doesn’t have to consider what is best for you before acting.
This essentially what happened in the United States in the 1930’s when a bank panic forced the end of the gold standard, a system that guaranteed gold for every piece of paper money. It further deteriorated in 1971 when Nixon ended the gold-dollar standard in response to the Vietnam War and French run on the dollar. Like many things, it worked for awhile. I’m convinced now that the Fed and White House honestly don’t know what to do. They know that the system is broken but aren’t willing to risk their political capital to fix it.
What we have today is a government that takes no responsibility for their actions. Sadly, by election time, it is often too late to undo the actions of rogue politicians en masse. What would happen if you gave a five year-old a credit card with no limit and unlimited access to candy and toys? Mayhem. That’s what we have had for political representation in the last 50 years; a bunch of star struck five year-olds dreaming of new ways to spend money they don’t have. Luckily for them, they can just create it. This year, we are running a deficit of $1.17 TRILLION, which is nearly enough to lay a blanket on $1 bills over the entire state of Connecticut. Where does this money go? Of the entire budget, 61 percent ($2.17 trillion) is devoted to Social Security, Medicare, and interest on the current debt. Whoever said we aren’t a socialized nation clearly hasn’t been thinking clearly, or has determined to ignore the facts.
We have allowed government, Republicans and Democrats alike, to pull the wool over our eyes in exchange for the comfort of not having to worry about what the future holds. I am hopeful that this new batch of legislators, from both parties, will know what I now know. After 70 years of financial malpractice, there is literally no time to waste getting back on track to fiscal solvency.
The leftist punditry that played such a key role in convincing the American people that it was safe to hire an inexperienced community organizer as the chief executive of the world’s premier power is at it again. This time it seeks to convince the American people that their perception is wrong. Barack Hussein Obama has done as well as could have been expected under the circumstances. FT columinst, Philip Stephens, writes:
We are less than a week away from the midterm elections. We are hearing about the typical Left-wing fraudulent hijinks: rigged voting machines, union thugs assigned to “monitor” the machines, free food and union “gift cards” given to folks who vote for the Democrat candidate. Democrats have been pulling these kinds of frauds since at least 1960, when the Kennedys stole the presidential election from Richard Nixon.
Here’s a crisp, Marine gate-guard’s salute to all the men and women in America’s military services who have fought our wars for us and who have suffered misery, injury, death — and sometimes cold ingratitude in return. We owe them a debt beyond explication. Their national holiday is shortly before us.
Back in January, David Plouffe was brought back to the White House to set a “winning” strategy for Democrats for the midterm elections. Plouffe, the chief strategist of Barack Obama’s 2008 winning campaign, was called upon to see if he could re-create a winning strategy this time around. He’s had nearly a year to turn the Democrats’ fortunes around. How’s that working out?
The Financial Times published an edited extract from “Zero Sum Game” Gideon Rachman’s forthcoming book. In it their award winning liberal columnist bemoans what he perceives to be the unsavory consequences of the post 2008 relative decline of the US. Before becoming an FT columnist, he reports, he has worked for the BBC and the Economist. Three formidable British media outlets which have never hesitated to delight in exposing their disapproval for any expression of American ideological, economic or diplomatic assertiveness. Nor have they failed to celebrate any manifestations of American difficulties especially when Republicans ruled the land or neo-Conservative advocacy of promoting Democracy and Capitalism held sway.
Here are some of the ways our lives have changed since 9/11. We are all subjected to tedious search and scans at airports, courthouses, museums, concert halls and selective commercial and professional buildings.
Stimulus emerged as a dirty word in this election cycle. Democratic Keynesians argue that it saved the US and what is needed is more of the same. 2/3 of American polled, consider it a waste of money. They may not know the reason the Keynesian recipe no longer works but they can see that it not only does not work but that it is making the sick American economy sicker. But why have American efforts to stimulate the economy fail so miserably while Chinese efforts have succeed so well? Because in the US (though not in China) demand is local but supply is global, points out Andy Xie.
Now that the season has ended, it will be interesting to speculate on what is coming for Don Draper and the gang. We have watched as Don deteriorated throughout most of this season, culminating in his severe business losses and concomitant alcoholism, growing problems for Sally, difficulties in Betty’s marriage and a spiraling realization that his was a perilously un-integrated life. Then came the last episode with reversals all around. Don managed to turn the Lucky Strike firing into a new opportunity for getting in on the ground floor of the anti-smoking campaign; Peggy managed to snag a new account; Joan has kept Roger’s baby that we thought was aborted and has made her unsuspecting husband deliriously happy with this unexpected news; and lastly there was the thunderbolt decision Don made to dump Faye and marry Megan.
“Everybody needs a haircut. That’s how I got started. I was forced to cut my own hair in eighth grade. Back then, they would start around the head like a bowl — no blending, no nothing. That was the style then.'’
When North Korea makes headlines, it is never good news. For instance, there was the Korean War — certainly not good news. Then there was the seizure of the USS Pueblo in 1968 and the shooting down of a U.S. Navy EC-121 intelligence plane in 1969. And in 1983 there was attempted assassination of members of the South Korean cabinet in Rangoon.
The first movie I ever saw being filmed in Chicago was “The Hunter” with Steve McQueen in 1979. They were setting up a shot where a car was to be driven off the Marina Towers parking garage and into the Chicago River. An enormous crowd gathered across Wacker Drive to watch.
After reading the latest rambling casserole of venom dished up by Maureen Dowd I can see why she is so angry. I would be angry too if my President was a hapless nitwit who couldn’t maneuver a sandwich out of a brown paper bag. Lady Dragon Dowd somehow believes that the problem is not her liberal idols she shamelessly sucks up to but the rising stars of the Republican party who happen to be more of a woman than she ever aspired to be.
It was the pearls. They seemed so out of place. She always wore pearls, whether she was doing housework, eating breakfast or just reading the newspaper. Barbara Billingsley, aka June Cleaver, the archetypical 1950’s American mother, died yesterday.
After years of condescension by sophisticated Francophiles for our country’s paucity of maternity/child care benefits, comes the report that French women are 46th in the World Economic Forum’s 2010 Gender Equality Report, behind most of Europe, the U.S. (19), Kazakhstan, Uganda, Namibia and Guyana. So while French bebes and pre-schoolers may be getting government day care, 82% of their mamas work and perform twice as many domestic chores as their husbands in order to keep their careers and families afloat. The prototype in the Times article of Oct 12th is a 31 year old doctor with four children and a husband for whom she shops and cooks in addition to her full time medical job. She is in charge of taking the kids to school and day care each day by Metro. (ou est papa?) The accompanying picture shows her wearing strappy high heeled sandals, carrying an infant in one arm, holding a toddler’s hand in the other and crossing a wide intersection behind two very young children who are crossing by themselves, way ahead of their mother’s reach and disconnected from each other. More than anything else, this photo looks like an illustration for how to be a reckless mother or what not to wear when navigating traffic with four little kids.
I am asking for your “vote.” I posted on the CNN opinion page a call for a new antiwar movement, similar to the one against the war in Vietnam, teach-ins and rallies and all. If you find merit in the following, please consider (a) clicking “recommend” on CNN and (b) sharing with others.
Free speech is infringed upon all the time, even here, in the most free-speaking country on earth. There is not only Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.’s famous dictum against falsely shouting “Fire!” in a crowded theater, but the practice of muzzling claims like “Eating FattySnax Makes You Younger!”
Did anyone else find it interesting that Iran’s nuclear computer got hacked — and the next day Jimmy Carter checked himself into the hospital? This means that if and when Israel finally bombs Iran’s nukes, it could finally kill the man. Apparently, the news merely upset Jimmah’s stomach and he was released the next day.
While most midterm elections turn on specific policies, this year’s will turn on much more – America’s place in the world, both economically, as the interest on the debt continues to consume a greater part of the US gross domestic product, and strategically, as current policies of international engagement can be misinterpreted as opportunities to attack the U.S. or its allies.