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Despite Failure of “Stimulus” to Work as Advertised,
President Focuses on Regulatory Schemes, not Economic Recovery

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 8:08 pm - July 2, 2009.
Filed under: 2010 Elections,Economy,National Politics,Obama Watch

Welcome Instapundit Readers!  While you’re here, you might want to check out my tributes to Karl Malden, my co-blogger’s reflections on the President’s tanking poll numbers, a thought on how some gay marriage activists have made demonizing Mormons their modus operandi and my observation that the MSM see Obama and Palin as blank screens upon which to project their prejudices.

Today, the Labor Department released figures showing unemployment hitting new highs, continuing to exceed even the level the Obama Administration forecast it would have attained without the “stimulus”–and considerably higher (considerably, considerably) than Democrats promised if Congress passed the legislation which may well have ended Arlen Specter’s political career. (Hey, ya’ gotta find a silver lining somewhere.)


(Chart courtesy of Innocent Bystanders.)

No wonder the President’s support is taking a hit, particularly on the economy.

Apparently, Obama is more interested in exploiting the economic crisis to achieve his own political goals* than to first accomplish what he was elected to do.  Recall, how the polls started shifting in the Democat’s direction as the scope of the financial meltdown became clear.  He used the economic downturn to his political advantage.  People trusted him to fix the economy.

But, now instead of focusing on the economy, he continues forward a myriad of initiatives, many of which would place burdens on private industry, you know, companies which tend to create new jobs.  Instead of getting us out of the mess that Obama “inherited,” the “stimulus” has made it worse.

Small businesses aren’t hiring because they are “paralyzed by regulatory uncertainty.” If they had greater confidence in the Administration’s economic plans, were less skeptical about its attitude toward the private sector, these employers might be expanding their businesses, hiring new workers and spurring economic growth.

Given the regulatory schemes proposed by the Obama Administration and the legislation proposed by the Democratic Congress, no wonder the economy continues to stagnate.  Unless the President develops economic plans which work, based on models of successful recoveries, rather than adhere to theories similar to past policies which failed to end economic crises, expect unemployment to continue its upward climb.  But, then again, if the economy fails to recover, expect Obama’s failures should help end the political careers of Barbara Boxer, Russ Feingold, Patty Murray and Hary Reid.

Like I said, ya’ gotta find a silver lining.

* (more…)

An Ordinary Looking Actor with an Extraordinary Talent

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 6:09 pm - July 2, 2009.
Filed under: LA Stories,Movies/Film & TV

For the fourth time since I moved to LA, I trekked up to Hollywood Boulevard to honor a legend who had recently passed by laying flowers on his star on the Walk of Fame.  The large wreath is something the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce places over the star of each individual when he dies.  Mine is the smallest bouquet.


On my way to Malden’s star, just east of Hollywood & Vine, I passed Michael Jackson’s star just in front of Grauman’s Chinese Theater. The sound trucks that had been there the last time I drove through the heart of Hollywood were gone, but the barricades — and the crowds–remained, with posters expressing people’s affection for the King of Pop and sadness at his passing. There were also balloons and flowers, a marked contrast to Malden’s star–near an empty Hollywood cafe.

Obama Support Is Tanking

Wow.  As PatriotPartner said to me — “Want to see a lead balloon?  Go to Rasmussen today“. (h/t – HotAir)

Ed Morrissey sums it all up nicely over at HotAir.

Rasmussen’s new poll, taken before the release of June’s unemployment numbers, shows significant slippage for Barack Obama on the economy, his central issue.  Only 42% of American voters give him excellent or good marks on handling the economy, the lowest ratings he has yet received.  His personal approval rate has fallen to 53%.

The demographics of his decline portend more bad news for Obama and his Democratic allies in Congress.  Only the youngest voters support him on fiscal policy, and only barely, 52%-46%. Every other age demographic above 30 years of age has majorities now showing disapproval.  Independents have begun to run away in massive numbers; they now oppose him 75%-23%, a huge break away from Obama and a sign that his supposed moderate stances have been exposed as shams. Every income level except the lowest also has majorities disapproving of his handling of the economy.  Voters outside the “political class” oppose Obama 65%-33%.

Obama doesn’t fare well on national security, either.  Rasmussen reports that Obama only has 44% approval on these issues, and 55% opposing him.  Majorities of both women and men view him disfavorably.  Every income level has majorities opposed to Obama, and independents disapprove 68%-31%.  Obama only wins within the $60K-$75K income level; even his base of support among the lowest income earners narrowly reject Obama’s national-security policies, 52%-47%.

Obama isn’t just coming back to Earth in the polling.  He’s losing independents and demonstrating his radical bent on policy, and more and more Americans have begun to see it.

Perhaps the grown-ups in America are waking up before it is too late.  The awakening will only increase over the July 4th weekend as talk of our shared economic disaster will trump Michael Jackson around the patio.

As I said on Twitter earlier today

Is it 1979 again??? 10% unemployment. Americans being taken hostage by Islamists. President coddles dictators.

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

US Soldier Captured in Afghanistan

Posted by Bruce Carroll at 11:29 am - July 2, 2009.
Filed under: Military,Post 9-11 America,War On Terror

This is depressing news. My prayers go out to him and his family.  Please let’s all pay attention to what is going on in both Iraq and Afghanistan!

CAMP LEATHERNECK, July 2 — A U.S. soldier missing from his base in eastern Afghanistan since Tuesday is believed to have been captured by Taliban militants, the military said Thursday.

In a statement issued from U.S. military headquarters in Kabul, officials said “we are exhausting all available resources to ascertain his whereabouts and provide for his safe return.”

The soldier was not part of the large-scale assault launched on Taliban forces in southern Afghanistan early Thursday. That operation, which involves about 4,000 troops from the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade, was encountering only light resistance, officials said. But the military expects the Taliban to respond more harshly once troops move into towns and begin patrols.

Military officials in Afghanistan, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the situation, said the missing soldier appears to have walked off his base into an unsecured area.

A U.S. official in Afghanistan said the soldier’s absence was discovered when he did not show up for morning formation. It is highly unusual for a U.S. soldier to leave a military base unaccompanied by other American troops.

A member of the Taliban linked to insurgent leader Sirajuddin Haqqani in Pakistan said that the soldier is in the custody of militants from the Haqqani network who are operating on the Afghan side of the border.

10% unemployment, Americans captured by Islamists and the US President coddles dictators.

Is it 1979 all over again?

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

In Memoriam Karl Malden

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 3:25 am - July 2, 2009.
Filed under: Great Men,Movies/Film & TV

One of the greatest character actors of all time has died. Karl Malden, who won an Academy Award for best supporting actor in A Streetcar Named Desire, passed away of natural causes yesterday in Los Angeles. He was 97.

He made up for his ordinary looks by his extraordinary performances, distinguishing himself in three films directed by Streetcar director Elia Kazan, including his (in my view) his greatest performance (and that’s saying a lot) as Father Barry in On the Waterfront. Kazan had first met the actor in New York in the 1930s where he him “in a host of successful Broadway shows.

He later starred alongside Michael Douglas in the 1970s television show, “The Streets of San Francisco.”  He served as President of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences from 1989-1992.  His acting range was incredible, from the pathetic older man trying to control his younger wife in Kazan’s Baby Doll, to the level-headed “G.I.’s general,” Omar Bradley, in Patton, to the persistent police inspector in Hitchcock’s under-appreciated I, Confess.

He was truly protean, able to play almost any character.  In the three films he did with Kazan, he assumed three entirely different guises.  He could be a nebbish, manipulated by those around him–or the moral force of one of the grestest movies of all time.  He could hold his own again more charismatic screen legends like George C. Scott, Montgomery Clift and Brando.

Words cannot capture the true greatness of this man, so let me offer two scenes from Waterfront where he really shows his acting chops. I can’t watch the first without crying. All you need do is look at his face at the end of the second clip to see that a good actor doesn’t need dialogue to express his character’s emotions.

UPDATE:  From the comments:

An actor who could play characters at opposite ends of the moral and emotional scales and all points between — from Dad Longworth in “One Eyed Jacks” to Omar Bradley in “Patton” and Father Barry in “On the Waterfront” — and make them rock solid believable, is an actor that comes along maybe two or three times in a century.

Couldn’t have said it better myself.

They’d rather demonize Mormons than promote gay marriage

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 3:24 am - July 2, 2009.
Filed under: Gay Marriage,Gays & religion,Hysteria on the Left

When talking to (and reading the e-mails of) my gay friends and acquaintances about Mormons, all too many of them insist on insulting that faith and its flock, largely because of the church’s involvement in the efforts to pass Proposition 8 last fall.

Recall the hysteria of the protests last fall against the passage of Prop 8?  The activists directed their ire at the Mormon Church.  And now, as we debate means to repeal the proposition, it seems sometimes that they would rather attack Mormons than make the case for gay marriage.

In that process, they would alienate those Mormons who, while they love their church, do not always agree with its teaching, individuals who might buck church elders and vote for gay marriage.  If the issue is about the qualities of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, then they lose those votes–as well as those of others truly tolerant of the great variety of religions which flourish in the United States.

Last month, Law Professor William A. Jacobson noted how some bloggers were singling out one of the signatories on the Obama Justice Department brief in support of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) because that lawyerThey  is Mormon:  “Even though others also signed the brief, and the brief must have gone through a vetting process at DOJ, Aravosis chose to single out the one person who was Mormon for scorn“.

Why is it that gay marriage activists are so determined to use the debate on their issue to vilify members of a particular faith instead of making the case for the social change they advocate? It’s almost as if their real issue is not promoting gay marriage, but demonizing cetain social conservatives.

If Arlen Specter Had Voted Against the “Stimulus” . . .

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 2:08 am - July 2, 2009.
Filed under: 2010 Elections,Congress (111th)

.  . . . he wouldn’t be facing headlines like this one in the Christian Science MonitorAre Specter’s Senate days numbered?

With his polls slipping and Congressman Joe Sestak having all but announced a bid to challenge the Senator in Pennsylvania’s Democratic primary, the odds against the Republican-turned-Democrat returning to the 112th Congress are increasing every day.  Had he sacrificed his eagerness to be at the center of attention during the “stimulus” debate and joined his party’s opposition to budgetary profligacy, he might have been able to win renomination as a Republican, simply by sticking with his party on issues which draw media attention.

Simply put, had he voted against the “stimulus,” his opponent wouldn’t have garnered the support he did among rank-and-file Republicans, upset at our party’s past profligacy and eager for a return to fiscal sanity.

Opposition to the “stimulus” may have brought him less time in the limelight, but secured him a longer tenure in the Senate.

The primary difference between Sarah Palin & Barack Obama

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 1:56 am - July 2, 2009.
Filed under: Obama Watch,Sarah Palin

Well, there are many.  You know, like her actually having executive experience before she appeared on the national stage–and actually taking on corruption in her party.  Ace identifies another one–perhaps the one which prevented her from looking as good in interviews during the fall campaign as he did:

As I said ten times during the campaign, Barack Obama is just Sarah Palin plus six months of briefing books and town halls.

Given how quickly she had to master the questions facing candidates on the national ticket while campaigning for the Republican ticket, while nursing an infant, while raising children, that she had so many fewer gaffes than her rival for the Vice Presidency, who had far more time to prepare is simply amazing.