Oh my...this is not going to set well with some people. The Obama Administration has decided to EXTEND three provisions of the Patriot Act including...
The Obama administration supports extending three key provisions of the Patriot Act that are due to expire at the end of the year, the Justice Department told Congress in a letter made public Tuesday.
Lawmakers and civil rights groups had been pressing the Democratic administration to say whether it wants to preserve the post-Sept. 11 law's authority to access business records, as well as monitor so-called "lone wolf" terrorists and conduct roving wiretaps.
These provisions were the ones that the Bush haters hated the most about the Patriot Act and are provisions that then Candidate Obama promised to overturn. Good to see yet another campaign promise was kept by President Obama.
I have a co-worker- a friend of mine, who I think I completely perplex. He is a New York City musician, artist and liberal. He has seen me come in to work carrying my reusable flatware and plate for my lunch and talk about conserving energy at home etc so much that he has called me a "hippie chick" more than once - and yet I am a conservative. There is so much of me that goes against so many of the stereo-types of conservatism, the biggest of which is my environmental conservation efforts. I keep reminding him (and others) that conservatism and conservation both have the same root word and that conservation is a very conservative trait.
That was never more apparent than this weekend as Jim Hoft, the Gateway Pundit points out. The national mall looked like this after Saturday's 9/12 events.
Logical Lady Salena Zito had a column up last week that added to my recent posts about the troubles that are plaguing the President in recent weeks. Her column, while focusing on the Pennsylvania Senate race, shows how the President’s troubles are filtering down to the Democrats down ticket hurting them in their re-election efforts.
The best observation that any politico can offer on the three-way U.S. Senate race in Pennsylvania between Republican Pat Toomey and two Democrats, U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak and incumbent Sen. Arlen Specter, is that it’s complicated.
So many unpredictable dynamics can affect it, including the economy, health care, the war in Afghanistan , and people's perceptions of President Obama, Congress and the two political parties.
There is something to be said about the impact of BOTH political parties in all states. As one of the Rasmussen reports polls that I linked to mentioned, Republican voters are not over thrilled with the vast majority of the Republicans in Congress.
However, Arlen Specter should be untouchable. He is the incumbent and he has the best name recognition of any of the challengers. The fact that he loses not only to Toomey but also to Sestak is a testament to the dissatisfaction that voters across the country are feeling right now.
Adding fuel to the fire is this Washington Post column.
In 2008, Colorado became a symbol of the changing politics in a region once firmly in Republican hands -- and also of the grass-roots power and energy fueling Barack Obama's candidacy. Today, the state embodies the uneasiness spreading throughout Democratic ranks as Obama struggles with major challenges and the 2010 midterm elections approach.
Colorado has been one of the Democratic Party's major success stories. Between 1968 and 2004, Republican presidential candidates carried the state in all but one election. Last year, Obama crushed John McCain in Colorado , part of a broader shift in the balance of political power in the Rocky Mountain West.
Obama's victory and earlier Democratic wins here have transformed the state. Early in the decade, Republicans controlled virtually everything -- the governor's office, almost all other statewide offices, the congressional delegation and both houses of the Colorado legislature. Today, Democrats are in control of all of those.
A year ago, Denver enthusiastically hosted the Democratic National Convention, which culminated with Obama's acceptance speech before more than 80,000 people at the Denver Broncos' football stadium. Legions of volunteers, young and old, fanned out across the state throughout the fall to rally the vote for Obama's campaign.
Today, the energy that powered Obama to victory has begun to dissipate. Some of his supporters remain on the sidelines; others are, if not disillusioned, questioning what has happened to his presidency. As they look toward 2010, Democrats are nervous. Gov. Bill Ritter, appointed Sen. Michael F. Bennet and at least one Democratic member of the House will probably face difficult election campaigns next year.
Roy Romer, a former Democratic governor, called the state of play "very much tougher" for Obama and the Democrats than it was a year ago. "The slippage is there, and it's because things are tough and solutions aren't easy, and they [voters] don't see progress toward solutions," he said.
"The political environment is tough for Democrats, tough for incumbents, tough for all politicians," Mike Stratton, a veteran Democratic strategist based in Denver , said a few days ago.
Even the AP has noticed the writing on the wall....
Despite sweeping Democratic successes in the past two national elections, continuing job losses and President Barack Obama's slipping support could lead to double-digit losses for the party in next year's congressional races and may even threaten their House control.
Fifty-four new Democrats were swept into the House in 2006 and 2008, helping the party claim a decisive majority as voters soured on a Republican president and embraced Obama's message of hope and change. Many of the new Democrats are in districts carried by Republican John McCain in last year's presidential contest; others are in traditional swing districts that have proved tough for either party to hold.
From New Hampshire to Nevada, House Democrats also will be forced to defend votes on Obama's $757 billion economic recovery package and on energy legislation viewed by many as a job killer in an already weak economy.
Add to that the absence of Obama from the top of the ticket, which could reduce turnout among blacks, liberals and young people, and the likelihood of a highly motivated GOP base confused by the president's proposed health care plan and angry at what they consider reckless spending and high debt.
Taken together, it could be the most toxic environment for Democrats since 1994, when the party lost 34 House incumbents and 54 seats altogether.
Emphasis mine. That last line should not be cause for automatic celebration within Republican circles. There is still much work to be done. However, given what we are seeing today, campaign 2010 could be a tough one for Democrats. Much can change between now and then but the Democrats are showing the penchant for shooting themselves in the foot that we have long see out of elected Republicans. If Republicans remember their roots, and find candidates that reflect those roots, 2010 could be a good year indeed.
So there has been a lot of breathless hyper-ventilating over Rep. Joe Wilson's emotional outburst last Wednesday night. Politicians on boths sides of the aisle are decrying Rep. Wilson's outburst and are demanding punishment. Granted these same voices were surprisingly silent regarding this particular outburst in 2005 but that is just another expected example of liberal hypocricy.
Jazz, Rick Moran and I talked about it briefly on last Thursday's episode of MSR (replay can be found here). At the time, I had mentioned that I wish that we had MORE outbursts like that and I pointed out the British Parliment has outbursts like this all the time. Alex Massie, the former DC correspondent for the Scotsman and the Daily Telegraph (both UK newspapers) took those comments a step further....
In Britain, boorish behavior like Rep. Joe Wilson’s is a cherished part of the political culture. Alex Massie on why American politicians are a bunch of wimps.
Far and away the most deplorable element of what we must now, presumably, call the Joe Wilson Affair is the fact that Rep. Wilson (R-SC) has felt the need to apologize for calling the president of the United States a liar during his speech on Wednesday night.
The second most deplorable aspect of this midget-size tempest was President Obama’s acceptance of Wilson’s apology. “We all make mistakes,” Obama said, adding that the congressman “apologized quickly and without equivocation. I am appreciative of that.”
Could anything be prissier than that?
Congrats and kudos to Rep. Jason Chaffetz. One of his big campaign promises was that he was not going to push for earmarks, that any worthy projects for his district will be presented on their own merits as a stand alone bill. The theory being that if a project is good enough to stand on it's own, it is worth funding. The first test of that theory came in the form of Rep. Chaffetz' bill HR 2265 - the Magna Water District Water Reuse and Groundwater Recharge Act of 2009. The Water Reuse and Groundwater Recharge Act of 2009 has been passed out of the House Natural Resources Committee with a favorable recommendation to the whole House.
Just what will the Magna Water District Water Reuse and Groundwater Recharge Act of 2009 do? This....
Magna Water District (District) constructed an electrodialysis reversal (EDR) drinking water treatment plant to remove harmful arsenic and perchlorate from the Barton Well Field. To address the water shortage issues facing the citizens of northwest Salt Lake County, the District developed a state-of-the-art, first of its type in the world water reuse and recharge facility, known as BIOBROx, which treats the waste stream from the EDR plant to produce high quality effluent that can be used for outdoor irrigation. In doing so, the Magna Water District will be saving over 580 million gallons/year of drinkable water that was formerly being used for irrigation purposes.
Rep. Chaffetz introduced the Magna Water District Water Reuse and Groundwater Recharge Act to address a pollution issue that was created by rocket motor production and that now necessitates a federal clean up.
This is a huge win for the people of Magna, the environment and those who are championing the Porkbusters cause.
Whodathunk it - an evil conservative championing environmental conservation......
Senator Orrin Hatch's and Governor Herbert's offices teamed up to bring a report to us on the real cost of cap and tax trade to Utah residents - and it's not a pretty picture! I'm going to skip most of the introduction to the report because by now we should all know what the Waxman Markey Bill (aka Cap and Trade) is intended to do. I am going to jump ahead to who the Senator and the Governor brought together to bring us this information....
We have invited representatives from the Utah industries who provide Utahns with their electricity, their food, and their gasoline to help citizens better understand how the Waxman-Markey legislation might affect them and their families. This report reflects the input of these industries and of various economic studies of the Waxman-Markey proposal by national think tanks and associations.
The first part of the report goes over something that has been discussed at length already - the cost of the increase in electrical rates to the average Utah household.
The next part is a bit of an eye opener - the impact on the food supply and America's farmers and ranchers(all italicized emphasis is mine).....
Utah and American farmers and ranchers produce the safest, most wholesome and affordable food available in the world today. Producing abundant food and fiber for a growing demand domestically and globally requires fuel and fertilizer for planting, cultivating, growing, harvesting, transporting and processing. It’s important to note that food in our local grocery stores today travels in excess on 1,200 miles before consumers take it home. Agriculture is one of the most energy sensitive sectors of our nation’s economy. Energy related expenses for Utah’s farm and ranch families are no estimated between 40-50 percent of total production costs.
There are less than 1 million farming and rancing operations producing food for over one-half billion people = 300 million Americans and over 200 million globally. This thin green line provides America’s food security.
Part of the reason why I am a very busy blogger today (as I Tweeted earlier) stemmed from the fact that I had an 8:30 breakfast meeting with Caleb Howe (Redstate.com Politics Daily sorry about that Caleb), Adam Bitely (NetRightNation) and some really great folks from the American Liberty Alliance (more on that later) and then from there I had to bolt up to Farmington where I was working ring crew for a local dog show. The State Capital was between points A and B so I took a quick side trip up to the Capital at about 9:30 this morning to see if there was anyone gathering yet. I was surprised to see a crowd of 150-200 already on the grounds with signs, flags and all the other accoutrement that one would expect from a gathering of the angry mob. I snapped a few pics with my trust Blackberry to share with you.
The first thing I saw as I entered the Capital grounds was this rowdy group....
As I walked closer to the Capital Building I came upon this group
Today's latest news on stem cell research comes from DC and from Britian. First from DC comes the news that the FDA is halting human trials of embryonic stem cells "treatments"....
When used in animal research, injections of embryonic stem cells formed tumors afterwards and also prompted the immune system of the intended recipients to reject the cells.
The FDA delayed the trials to review studies of the therapy, called GRNOPC1, in its use with animals.
Now, new reports indicate problems associated with the animals in Geron's studies prompted the FDA to halt the human trials. Specifically, the animals developed cysts at the injury sites after the injections.
Geron tried to play down the concerns and said in a statement that “a very low frequency of injected animals developed microscopic cysts in the regenerating injury site” but the cysts were “non-proliferative, confined to the injury site, and had no adverse effects on the animals."
It added that none of the animals developed teratomas.
“We have submitted these data to the FDA and are in discussions with the agency to answer its questions and proceed with the clinical trial,” Geron said.
One of the arguments that the anthropogenic global warming alarmists love to throw out at anything contrary to their "settled science" is that none of the deniers works are "peer reviewed". Well no longer can they use that canard to diminish the concerns and dissent of others. For noted MMGW denier Dr. Richard Lindzen has a new peer reviewed article out that debunks the "settled science".
SPPI’s authoritative Monthly CO2 Report for July 2009 announces the publication of a major peer-reviewed paper by Professor Richard Lindzen of MIT, demonstrating by direct measurement that outgoing long-wave radiation is escaping to space far faster than the UN predicts, and proving that the UN has exaggerated global warming 6-fold.
Lindzen’s paper on outgoing long-wave radiation shows that the “global warming” scare is over. Thanks to recent peer-reviewed papers that have not been mentioned in the mainstream news media, we now know that the effect of CO2 on temperature is small, we now why it is small, and we know that it is having very little effect on the climate.
This month’s CO2 Report provides the latest real-world scientific data about the climate –
The IPCC assumes CO2 concentration will reach 836 ppmv by 2100, but, for almost eight years, CO2 concentration has headed straight for only 570 ppmv by 2100. This alone halves all of the IPCC’s temperature projections.
As you may (or may not) know, my Blog Talk Radio partner Jazz Shaw is one of the many authors of the group blog "The Moderate Voice". Jazz is arguably one of the very few true moderates there. However today, Polimom, hit a home run with this thought provoking post on progressives and the Obama Administration.
The last two elections (2006 and 2008) were a rebuke to a Republican party that was running amok, and utterly without coherence, vision, or leadership. They deserved to be ousted, and their overheated rhetoric and deliberate misstatements about the new administration demonstrate that they are nowhere near ready to return to power; they need far more time in the political wilderness.
I don’t think, though, that the Republicans are going to be out for very long. It’s highly likely, in fact, that they’ll regain enormous ground in 2010 — not because of some newly-found coherence, but because the Democrats are blowing it. And the movement left, aka the “progressives”, own this.
Progressives are, in many ways, the yin to the far right yang. Their views are not mainstream; they’re seen as far to the left. And just like their counterparts on the extreme right, they don’t understand how far away they are from the massive moderate majority in the country.
I would also add that the far left loves to try to define anyone right of center as "far right" (as seen in the post comments) in an attempt to marginalize them and vice versa. It is a game that both sides play.
This amazing disconnect was brought home to me fully this weekend in the aftermath of the Van Jones resignation, when Jane Hamsher wrote at firedoglake:
Now [Van Jones has] been thrown under the bus by the White House for signing his name to a petition expressing something that 35% of all Democrats believed as of 2007 — that George Bush knew in advance about the attacks of 9/11.
To her, evidently, Van Jones’ Trutherism is just normal and perfectly acceptable.
Yet that same poll found that only 22% of all Americans agreed with Mr. Jones. Can’t anybody do subtraction any more? Even a third-grader could look at those numbers and see that the vast majority of America are not “Truthers”. Tellingly, that 22% figure is identical to the percentage that identified itself as “Somewhat Liberal” or “Very Liberal” in a poll just a few days ago.
Folks, when 78% of the country disagrees with you, your views are not representative. Sorry...
Many hard liberals seem to think that they and they alone brought Obama to the presidency. Without them (the thinking goes), he’d never have been elected, and thus, “he owes them”…. and right there is the root of the fear of the Obama presidency springing up around the country.
Which shores up my previous conclusions about the Presidents plummeting poll numbers. The center that he worked so hard to cultivate last summer during the election has abandoned him since January in large part because he has (as I mentioned before) ceded his agenda to the far left wing in Congress.
Markos Moulitsis doubled down on Ed Schultz' program yesterday (HT AP at Hot Air)
Markos has one thing right - this IS the defining issue for President Obama and if he can't deliver on this (and the war) with the overwhelming majorities that he has now, he is never going to deliver on them and that is going to turn off more than just the center moderates.
Until the President takes back his agenda he will continue to bleed support from the center until the only support he has is the 32-33% of the far left base that will support him no matter what.
That is not a strategy for winning future elections - a lesson that the far right STILL needs to learn.
Well maybe not with our traditional allies as President Obama seems to be intent on angering them at any and every turn.
Downing Street has hit back at Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton for attacking the decision to release the Lockerbie bomber.
President Obama and the US Secretary of State fuelled a fierce American backlash against Britain, claiming Abdelbaset Al Megrahi should have been forced to serve out his jail sentence in Scotland – but a senior Whitehall aide said their reaction was ‘disingenuous’.
British officials claim Mr Obama and Mrs Clinton were kept informed at all stages of discussions concerning Megrahi’s return.
The officials say the Americans spoke out because they were taken aback by the row over Megrahi’s release, not because they did not know it was about to happen.
‘The US was kept fully in touch about everything that was going on with regard to Britain’s discussions with Libya in recent years and about Megrahi,’ said the Whitehall aide.
‘We would never do anything about Lockerbie without discussing it with the US. It is disingenuous of them to act as though Megrahi’s return was out of the blue.
So the President KNEW that the Scots were going to give Megrahi a "compassionate release" and then when the American people cried "Foul" he expressed outrage that he never knew it was coming. It appears that the President miscalculated yet again on how the American people were going to react to this move so he had to quick scramble to cover his assets.
Great work Mr. President. So glad you are keeping your promise to improve our standing in the world.....
The first words I heard out of the Junior Logician's mouth when I got home from work tonight was "That was SOOOO lame!" After supper and chores, I asked him about his real thoughts about the speech. The one part that I thought was a winner for the President was his attempt at connecting with the kids, but that is where he lost the Junior Logician the most. As the Junior Logician reminded me, yes there are things that are similar between growing up then and now, but there are also many things that are very, very different. The classes are different, the expectations are different and the distractions that they deal with are different.
I asked him if there was anything that he took away from the speech - anything useful. He said that the remarks of the young man who introduced the President (whose name I did not get as I did have to step away from the computer just then) were the best part of the speech. The Junior Logician said that he took more away from the example that young man gave of being active in the community and getting good grades and working hard then he did out of anything the President said.
One of the problems that he had with the speech was that he felt that there were times that the President was "talking down" to them - treating them like they were still in grade school - which was the very real danger that the President ran talking to a group of school children that are this diverse. I would love to hear from the parents of a kindergradener or first grader to see if their kids came away from the speech with the feeling that the President was "talking over their heads". I suspect that will be the case.
So I asked the Junior Logician (who is probably more politically active than any of his classmates) how the speech resonated with his classmates. If his class was any indication, the speech was a major flop, as the vast majority of the class talked through the whole speech and did not pay attention to a single thing he said.
So those are the thoughts of a more or less typical teen-ager about the President's speech this morning.
So work cooperated and I was able to listen to the vast majority of the President's speech this morning. Now a lot of conservatives (some of whom are dear friends and others who I admire greatly) were busy counting words and were commenting about the over-use (in their minds) of the word "I". Given the context of the speech I understand exactly why the President used the word "I" so many times. He was using himself and his life experiences as an example to kids who are in similar situations as he should! Let me repeat myself....the President, who has a compelling life story of success in spite of the life circumstances he faced growing up, was correct in using his story to try to inspire others. A lot of kids are in single parent homes or in homes where there is a step parent. Many of those kids use that as an excuse for their lack of trying (much less success) in school. As far as using the Presidential bully pulpit to inspire kids, this was a very inspiring speech. One section that I particularly liked was this...
I hope the Junior Logician was paying attention to that part of the speech.
My only quibble (and it really is a minor one) with the speech was this....
If you quit school, you are quitting on your country? That is a bit of a burden to put on kids - especially the little ones. Yeah high school kids (like the Junior Logician) can handle this type of rhetorical flourish, but littler kids don't always get that kind of "big picture" thinking.
All in all, if this was the original speech, it was a very well prepared, well delivered inspirational speech - the type of speech that this President is so very good at reading. However, given the text of the accompanying lesson plans (which were leaked out last week) you have to suspect that this was not the original speech. Assuming that it was the original speech, the tone deaf part of the whole thing was the accompanying lesson plans. It really should be up the the teachers, administrators and the school district to decide what discussion points they hit after the speech. After all - these front line teachers and administrators know what their individual curricula are and how best to fit the President remarks into that curricula...and THAT (in a nutshell) should have been what the debate over this speech should have been about.
The White House has released a transcript of the speech that the President will be giving today at 10AM Mtn. I will be watching the speech from work (if it's not too busy) and I will post my thoughts on it (and maybe some thoughts from the Junior Logician) this evening.
The Logical Husband sent me this Christian Science Monitor piece that should be required reading for all Westerners. It talks about the challenges that we in the West must overcome in order to gain a truce with the Muslim world.
It goes beyond Saudi schoolbooks that teach as fact the Protocols of the Elders of Zion (a demonstrably bogus Jewish "plot" for world domination) and Tehran's sponsorship of a Holocaust skeptics conference. The 2004 tsunami? That was possibly caused by an Indian nuclear test, ably assisted by experts from the US and Israel, according to Egyptian newsweekly Al-Osboa. According to the 2006 Pew Global Attitudes Project, majorities in Egypt, Jordan, Indonesia, and Turkey do not believe that Arabs carried out the 9/11 attacks. And when asked in the same survey what is most responsible for Muslim nations' lack of prosperity, about half of those in majority Muslim countries responded "US and Western policies" either first or second, beating out "lack of education," "government corruption," "Islamic fundamentalism," and "lack of democracy."
Conspiracy theories threaten American diplomacy because when Mr. Obama promises X Thursday, a great percentage of Muslims will believe he really intends Y or that some shadowy organization will ensure Z. Every culture exhibits some interest in conspiracy theories (see "The Da Vinci Code"), but they are especially resonant in Muslim contexts, and Western leaders need to find a way to mitigate this problem. The first step is to understand its origins.
- What Are They Thinking?
- Rep. Ellison Admits What The President Refuses To
- A FOreshadowing of Things To Come
- How Bad Is It?
- Inside The Numbers
- From The "What If President Bush Had Done This" Department
- Heroic Kids
- Founders Morning Quote
- Hostile Climates
- I Pledge
- The Blame Game
- Founders Morning Quote
- Government Knows Best?
- Heating Up The Global Warming Debate
- Daily Quote