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Happy Birthday, Winston Churchill!

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 4:18 am - November 30, 2009.
Filed under: Great Men,World History

Today marks the 135th anniversary of the birth of the greatest man of the century concluded now nearly a decade ago.  On November 30, 1874, Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill was born at Blenheim Palace.  His father was Lord Randolph Churchill, his mother the former Jennie Jerome, the second daughter of the American financier Leonard Jerome.  His very parentage thus embodied the special relationship between the United States and United Kingdom.

Indeed, it was Churchill himself who coined the term to describe the relations between the two powerful Anglophone democracies.

Like a red head born almost exactly 134 years after him, Churchill was two months premature.  (The combination of those two characteristics must be a sign of greatness!)  Like that young Californian, the great Briton had trouble sitting still, traveling to Cuba, India, Sudan and South Africa to fight for his country (and sometimes dubious causes) before his 30th birthday.  He would write about his experiences; his books would earn him fame and fortune.

First elected to parliament in 1900 as a Tory, he broke with his party over tariffs, preferring free trade and the Liberals.  He would rejoin the Conservative Party in 1925, staying with the Tories, through his two terms as Prime Minister and until the end of his life.  Noting that Churchill “stood for Parliament under six labels,” one of his biographers, Paul Johnson wrote that “He was not a party man. . . .  His loyalty belonged to the national interest, and his own.

And Churchill saw the British national interest clearly linked to that of the United States and Western democracies.

While forever associated with the two great wars of the last century, the man himself may well have enjoyed the thrill of battle, but he was well aware of the horrors of war and did his utmost to prevent it.  A warmonger he clearly was not, though he did understand that war was sometimes necessary to prevent even worse evils. (more…)

Zelaya Opponent Wins Honduran Election by Large Margin

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 2:40 am - November 30, 2009.
Filed under: Honduras,Politics abroad

The Central American country’s long national nightmare should now be over.

First, the leftist President Manuel Zelaya tried to rig a referendum in defiance of his nation’s constitution to hold onto power.  Then, when the nation’s judiciary removed him from office, world leaders, including our own President, refused to recognize this constitutional action.

Well, yesterday, Honduras held elections which Zelaya described as a “fraud“; he urged his supporters to boycott the vote.  Well, over 60% of registered voters turned out, delivering a 56% majority to Porfirio Lobo. Defeated by Zelaya “in the last presidential election in 2005,” Lobo “comes from the centre-right opposition National Party.”

Despite recent electoral victories for the allies of Hugo Chavez in Nicaragua and El Salvador, chavismo does not appear to be an unstoppable force in Central America.   Democratic, constitutional governance will prevail, in Honduras at least.

With the Obama Administration saying it would recognize the results, it seems all’s well that ends well.  And shows as well that all its bellyaching over the “coup” these past few months was really just much ado about nothing.

On global warming, “The science is settled . . .

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 9:54 pm - November 29, 2009.
Filed under: Climate Change (Global Warming),Science

 . . . er, at the bottom of that dumpster.”  

So, sayeth Jim Treacher (via Instapundit).

(His trenchant commentary on this piece of news: “SCIENTISTS at the University of East Anglia (UEA) have admitted throwing away much of the raw temperature data on which their predictions of global warming are based.“)

MSM’s masquerade of objectivity

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 5:38 pm - November 29, 2009.
Filed under: Blogging,Media Bias,New Media

As per this post, the problem with the way Katie Couric interviewed the vice presidential candidates last fall was not that she asked tough question of the Republican while tossing softballs to the Democrat, it was that she did so while masquerading as a non-partisan purveyor of news.

If she acknowledged her bias, she might lose some audience share, but would gain in integrity.  She and others in what we’ve called the mainstream media, but which others identify by its more partisan inclinations, still engage in their masquerade of objectivity.  As my friend John Nolte observes:

A non-partisan, unbiased news media simply doesn’t exist anymore. All that remains of this once somewhat respectable profession are two kinds of media: those who lie about their agenda and those who don’t – and Mr. Gerson’s employer* is one of the liars. Whether it’s Glenn Beck, Arianna Huffington, National Review or MSNBC, tell me your biases upfront and we can at least start a dialogue from an honest foundation. On the other hand, the Washington Post, New York Times, Newsweek, Time, CNN, NBC, ABC, CBS and the like, have spent years making jerks out of us – lying to our faces. We knew this, there just wasn’t any alternative. But now that there is, their time is just about up.

Of the supposed unbiased news sources listed above, only Newsweek even makes noises about acknowledging its biases.  And to be sure, there are numerous reporters working for some of those outlets (even the Times) who had demonstrated a considerable degree of objectivity in their research and even-handedness in their reporting.

For others, however, the notion of objectivity is a mask to conceal their prejudices.  They just want us to believe that the way they see things is the way things are.

———–

*John penned his post in response to Michael Gerson’s lament for the decline of the MSM in the Washington Post.

Tea Parties: Where the Energy is on the Right

With 4,000 tea party patriots rallying against big government and higher taxation in St. Louis yesterday, it’s becoming increasingly clear that this phenomenon is here to stay.  

This is not some flash in the pan movement.  Americans have been protesting the Administration’s spendthrift policies at least since February.  And the roots of this movement may even go back to the fall of 2007 when people started flocking to the libertarian Ron Paul’s quixotic campaign for the GOP presidential nomination.

Tea party protests certainly belong on any list of the top 10, if not top 5, phenomena of 2009.  If Time magazine took conservative ideas seriously, they would consider these protestors as candidates for People of the Year.

As a gay conservative, it’s reassuring to see the rise of these protests.  It shows that the energy on the right is not among the social conservatives seeking to stymie the growing acceptance of gay people in America today.  Instead, the energy is among those of us who seek to reduce the size of government, thus increasing individual freedom.

Watching the increasing number of Americans rallying to the cause of freedom reminds me of the relief I felt back in 1994 when I first read the Contract with America.  After it appeared to some that Republicans were moving in the direction of social conservatism in 1992, the Contract showed the GOP returning to its small government principles.  We’re seeing the same thing today.

And as Republican officials and candidates recognize the resilience of the Reaganite ideas embodied in these protests, seeing them as a legitimate expression of the sentiment of a growing number of Americans (confirmed by a recent Gallup poll), they’re beginning to realize to win back to congressional majorities, they need focus on cutting government spending and reducing federal regulation.   And oppose the Obama Democrats’ big government solutions to our nation’s problems. 

So, don’t be deceived about the direction of American conservatism in the post-George W. Bush era.  You can see it on the streets of cities across the nation.  And read it in the polls.  The tea parties may not yet have succeeded in returning America to its small government ideas, but they have galvanized a large segment of the American people.  And showed that the principles Ronald Reagan so eloquently articulated still resonate far and wide across the fruited plain.

Ronald Reagan’s Reading* List

While I have long compared Sarah Palin’s communication skills as well as her ability to connect with Americans to those of Ronald Reagan, I have also long noted that she lacks his (self-)education in the ideas of conservatism and free markets.  To achieve his status as a leader of the right, she needs study the ideas which undergirded his political philosophy.

In her book, that accomplished Alaskan repeatedly references the Gipper and his ideas, pointing to them as the guiding principles for post GOP successes and future Republican governance.  Now, she needs improve her understanding of those ideas.  To that end, she would do well to read the books he read (adding into the mix various conservative “classics,” like Charles Murray’s Losing Ground, appearing since (and, to some degree, in response to) his rise).

Perhaps, some Reagan scholar — or intrepid blogger with a lot of time on his hands — could start reviewing his diaries and letter and other information about the Gipper to identify the books he read in the 1950s and 1960s as he began his move away from his longstanding affiliation with the Democratic Party and toward the GOP.  (Maybe that list has already been compiled.)

I’d just love to see what he read.

As an aside, let me indicate another presidential reading list I’d like to see, the list of books that Thomas Jefferson sent to James Madison in the late 1780s while the former was in France and the latter was drafting the Constitution.

* (more…)

Sarah Palin & the Need to Communicate the Gipper’s Vision

As I finished Sarah Palin’s book earlier this morning, I wondered if she were the right person to spearhead a Republican Renaissance in the United States.  She clearly understands why our party has lost its way, but remains a controversial figure, even a divisive one.  The mere mention of her name whips a huge segment of the American left into a frenzy.

But, even if she is not the right person to lead the GOP, Sarah Palin can help carry the Republican message forward; she certainly understands what has been ailing our party in recent years.  Toward the end of her book, she gets at the twin failures which have plagued the GOP, losing sight of our small-government principles and failing to communicate those principles.  To be sure, she recognizes the challenge of articulating them:

It’s easy to promise free medical care and a chicken in every pot.  It’s more difficult to explain how we’re going to pay for it all and to explain why social programs that were supposed to help the poor have ended up hurting them, becoming unsustainable financial liabilities for all of us.  Ronald Reagan was the last president to explain this to us.

Somewhere along the way, those clear principles got lost.  People look at the Republican Party today–the supposedly conservative party—and say, “What happened to the Reagan legacy?”

In short, the issue is not just conservative ideas, but communicating those ideas.  One reason I believe Sarah Palin matters is that she has shown a knack for communicating that vision and connecting with voters that few Republican politicians have shown in recent years.

And the Republican Party, despite it rises in most polls in recent days, still has an image problem.  Many young voters still see ours as the party of backward-looking social conservatives.  A Hollywood friend recently dismissed the GOP as “old-fashioned.” (more…)

Carly Fiorina: big government policies to blame for CA’s collapse

Every now and again, I support a candidate for public office, only to find that the more I study his (or her) record, the more I find he (or she) has a firm grasp on the issues of greatest concern to me.  This is not to say I agree with the candidate on every issue, but, his focus is where mine would be if I were running for office.

So it is today with Carly Fiorina as it was in 1994 with Jim Miller.  Who is Jim Miller, you ask?  Miller was the Director of the Office of Management and Budget in Ronald Reagan’s second term who, in 1994, ran unsuccessfully against Oliver North for the Republican nomination for a United States Senate seat in Virginia.  I initially supported Miller largely because I didn’t think North would make a good candidate in the general and that he would make an even worse Senator.

My instincts (and not just mine) served me well.  In a very Republican year, North was one of the few well-funded Republican challengers who lost his bid for federal office.

In the run-up to the Republican convention in Richmond (where the Senate nomination would be decided), I learned more and more about the Gipper’s former budget director and became increasingly impressed with his command of economic issues and his unflinching support for free markets.

Last night, after reading John Fund’s piece on my gal for the 2010 Senate race in California, I became increasingly enamored with Carly Fiorina, finding in her a similar commitment to free markets.  Surveying the business climate in the Golden State,

Ms. Fiorina is not shy in pointing out what’s to blame. “The high tax, big government, regulatory regime we see in California is the current course and speed for where the nation is headed,” she warns. “California is a great test case, a factual demonstration that those programs don’t work.” She notes that while state spending has significantly outstripped inflation in recent years, every year government services perform more poorly and it becomes harder to open a business. “I very much doubt Hewlett Packard could be founded today as a manufacturing company in California,” she adds soberly.

In short, Carly gets it, not just where California politicians have lost their way, but also where Republicans have lost their bearings.  We need keep a clear eye on our principles, that the solutions to most social and economic problems don’t lie with government, unless we’re looking for ways to reduce government’s intrusion in our lives and pocketbooks. (more…)

San Francisco Brunch Today @ 12:30 PM

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 3:01 am - November 28, 2009.
Filed under: Post 9-11 America

If you have not already, please let me know if you’d like to attend our brunch today in San Francisco. (Details provided with confirming e-mail).

Athena’s Insight: Why Obama’s Bow Matters

In our media age, if a politician does not recognize the importance of his image, he’s either never going to get the seat to which he aspires or will lose it soon after he does.  John McCain probably lost as many votes last fall from his erratic behavior at the time of the financial crisis as he did for his failure to craft and communicate a coherent message on the economy.   By contrast, Obama’s coolness at the same time may have sealed the deal for many wavering voters, wanting to vote for the party out of power, but having doubts about its 2008 presidential nominee.

By the same token, Peggy Noonan thinks that President Obama’s repeating bowing to the crowned heads of Asia could hurt him more for the image they convey than for the protocol they breach:

In a presidency, a picture or photograph becomes iconic only when it seems to express something people already think. When Gerald Ford was spoofed for being physically clumsy, it took off. The picture of Ford losing his footing and tumbling as he came down the steps of Air Force One became a symbol. There was a reason, and it wasn’t that he was physically clumsy. He was not only coordinated but graceful. He’d been a football star at the University of Michigan and was offered contracts by the Detroit Lions and Green Bay Packers.

But the picture took off because it expressed the growing public view that Ford’s policies were bumbling and stumbling. The picture was iconic of a growing political perception.

The Obama bowing pictures are becoming iconic, and they would not be if they weren’t playing off a growing perception. If the pictures had been accompanied by headlines from Asia saying “Tough Talks Yield Big Progress” or “Obama Shows Muscle in China,” the bowing pictures might be understood this way: “He Stoops to Conquer: Canny Obama shows elaborate deference while he subtly, toughly, quietly advances his nation’s interests.”

Instead we’re getting headlines indicating that he didn’t get much, if anything, from his trip to Asia.  It becomes thus an image of his failure to show confidence on the world stage much, much as his coolness in the fall campaign suggested a confidence to handle tough crises without breaking a sweat. (more…)

Global Warming Marketing Is Based On A Complete Lie

Folks, this is the original “hockey stick” graph that was so compelling in Al Gore’s movie “Inconvenient Truth.”  This graph, and much of the other data Gore hawks, came directly from the computer models from the Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia in eastern England.

This graph has now been proven to be a complete lie and utter fiction.

hockey_stick

As Megan McArdle at The Atlantic put it quite concisely a couple days ago

Bearing this in mind, I think most people–including me–missed the biggest part of the climate emails story.  Sexing up a graph is at best a misdemeanor.  But a Declan McCullough story suggests a more disturbing possibility:  the CRU’s main computer model may be, to put it bluntly, complete rubbish.

The emails seem to describe a model which frequently breaks, and being constantly “tweaked” with manual interventions of dubious quality in order to make them fit the historical data.  These stories suggest that the model, and the past manual interventions, are so poorly documented that CRU cannot now replicate its own past findings.

You see, folks.  According to the emails from the CRU scientists themselves, the post-1960 data (the beginning of the “hockey stick”) was constantly “fiddled with” to the point that the entire model is a complete lie.  They were tampering with science from the start.  THAT is the story of the “Climategate” emails.  The CRU scientists were, in effect, ruining the modeling from the beginning and at many points along the way.

Those who deny the science behind the manipulation of the computer models are, in fact, denying the truth from the words of the CRU scientists themselves.

RELATED: Climategate: It’s the Totalitarianism, Stupid – James Lewis, PajamasMedia

RELATED: There Was Proof Of Fraud All Along – Vincent Gray, IPCC expert

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

More Hypocrisy from the One

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 1:36 pm - November 27, 2009.
Filed under: Liberal Hypocrisy,Media Bias,Obamania

Just caught this in Fred Barnes’s WSJ piece on why Obama isn’t changing Washington 

“Change must come to Washington,” Mr. Obama said in a June 2008 speech. “I have consistently said when it comes to solving problems,” he told Jake Tapper of ABC News that same month, “I don’t approach this from a partisan or ideological perspective.”

He doesn’t?  Hmmm. . . interesting comment to make from a guy who never forged a bipartisan consensus on a controversial issue while he was in the Illinois Senate or representing Illinois in the U.S. Senate.  And while he had friends on the Republican side of the aisle, he never parted company with his Democratic colleagues on any major issue, always marching in lockstep with his partisan caucus.

If he doesn’t approach things from a partisan perspective, why then did he tap primarily partisan hacks to serve on his White House staff, picking a particularly ruthless partisan for the most important job (after his own) in the West Wing, Chief of Staff?

Obama won last fall in large part because people bought his rhetoric about being a postpartisan healer.  But, the reality of his record–and now his Administration–shows an entirely different person.

Wonder why the media didn’t investigate this when they had the chance during the campaign.  For there was abundant information to show just how much daylight there was between the Democrat’s rhetoric and his record.  And they wouldn’t have needed travel all the way to Alaska to find such information, much of it could be accessed with just a handful of keystrokes.

Climategate & the “need” to blame Western man for all manner of social and environmental ills

It seems every now and again this idea for (what seems to be) a brilliant post on Climategate flashes across my mind and then fades before I have a chance to write it down or otherwise record it.  

When I try to recall those thoughts or call them up by reading other thoughtful posts on this scandal of considerable consequence (and apparent media ignorance), all that comes up are two notions, both which may perhaps be a brilliant insights, but the first is definitely not my own.  It is something I have read on a number of conservative blogs and heard from other thoughtful conservative individuals–and may even have read in an intelligent conservative column or two (or three). 

Basically, it boils down to this:  they’ve been doctoring the data on global warming because they need it to be so.  First, if private industry has created this problem, then it becomes to easier for them to demand increased government control over our society, giving greater power to a certain “anointed” class (which must needs include them). And second, it makes it easier to be critical of our species, particularly that part of our species which resides in the industrialized West or otherwise contributes to the civilization of the West.  

If I do have anything original to offer, it might be about that second point, though I’m pretty sure I’m not the first to raise it.

There is a fascinating irony to the attitude under consideration in that second point.  The very notion of self-criticism is a a key aspect of Western civilization.  And yet, some have taken it to an extreme.  It’s not just some problems that can be attributed to our society, our culture, our civilization, our species, but every major problem must needs be one of human design.  Some have taken a key aspect of Western civilization to indict that very civilization (and, in other fields of endeavor, to blame the West while excusing the rest even when their crimes are far worse). (more…)

HAPPY THANKSGIVING

I would like to wish our readers and their families & friends the most blessed and happy Thanksgiving today.  We are so fortunate to live in the freest and most prosperous nation in the history of mankind.  In that spirit, I would like to reprint President George Washington’s First Thanksgiving Proclamation.

New York, 3 October 1789

By the President of the United States of America, a Proclamation.

Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor– and whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint Committee requested me to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness.

Now therefore I do recommend and assign Thursday the 26th day of November next to be devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be– That we may then all unite in rendering unto him our sincere and humble thanks–for his kind care and protection of the People of this Country previous to their becoming a Nation–for the signal and manifold mercies, and the favorable interpositions of his Providence which we experienced in the course and conclusion of the late war–for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty, which we have since enjoyed–for the peaceable and rational manner, in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national One now lately instituted–for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed; and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and in general for all the great and various favors which he hath been pleased to confer upon us.

and also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech him to pardon our national and other transgressions– to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually–to render our national government a blessing to all the people, by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed–to protect and guide all Sovereigns and Nations (especially such as have shewn kindness unto us) and to bless them with good government, peace, and concord–To promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the encrease of science among them and us–and generally to grant unto all Mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as he alone knows to be best.

Given under my hand at the City of New York the third day of October in the year of our Lord 1789.

Carly Fiorina to use New Media Aggressively against Boxer

Yesterday, my gal for the race to unseat Ma’am Boxer, Carly Fiorina, took to the pixels of BigGovernment.com to take on Obamacare, calling it a “fiscal albatross for our already ballooning federal budget deficit“:

This proposal will cost taxpayers up to $2.5 trillion, create a massive new entitlement, raise taxes, add to the federal deficit and fail to solve our nation’s health care crisis.  It is the kind of big government answer that we have come to expect from Democrats, particularly my opponent, Barbara Boxer. It is the same answer that has proven to fail this country time and time again.

When it comes to big government follies, this businesswoman doesn’t mince her words.

Knowing the media challenges facing critics of big government, Carly Fiorina understands the importance of blogs in getting her message out.  Since she announced her Senate bid earlier this month, she has already communicated directly with your humble correspondent on two occasions, once on a conference call (with other bloggers) and the second time in a one-on-one telephone interview.

In that conversation, when I asked her how she planned on dealing with a hostile media and Boxer’s politics of the gutter, she replied “that’s why you and your colleagues are so important; you’re changing the course of political discourse.”  She intends to use technology “aggressively” to get her message out.  As to Ma’am’s attacks, well, Carly told me she is not unused to “hostile media.”

It’s nice to have a Republican candidate who recognizes the importance of new media.  Carly Fiorina has learned from past GOP defeats.  In the past, her Democratic opponent, Barbara Boxer has been dependent on the mainstream media from keeping her record under wraps.  In her 1998 campaign, for example, she didn’t suffer for limiting her access to the press to avoid questions about her daughter’s then marriage to the then-President Bill Clinton’s ethically challenged brother-in-law.

But, Boxer has never faced an election, with a fully operational blogosphere, eager to raise questions about her voting record and the distance she has kept from her constituents.  According to her office, she does hold townhalls for Californians, but only for those who “come to Washington every week that the Senate is in session.” So, during this recession, when one in eight Californians are out of work and others scraping to get buy, a citizen of the Golden State has to buy a ticket for a transcontinental flight just to talk to our junior Senator. (more…)

San Francisco Brunch Saturday, November 28 @ 12:30 PM

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 3:46 pm - November 25, 2009.
Filed under: Blogging,Travel

We’ve fixed a location for our brunch this coming Saturday in San Francisco. Drop me a line if you’d like to attend.

On Bill Sparkman’s Suicide & the Hysteria of the Left

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 2:07 pm - November 25, 2009.
Filed under: Blogging,Hysteria on the Left

Well, at least, Howard Dean, Rachel Maddow’s guest host on her eponymous MSNBC show, reported that the death of Bill Sparkman was rule a suicide.  He noted only that the show has reported the story, without referencing the hysterical assumptions Miss Maddow made.  Wonder if she, when she returns from her Thanksgiving break, will apologize for breathlessly linking his death to anti-government protesters of the tea party variety.

So eager to besmirch conservatives are that that once these left-wingers learned about his death, they rushed to judgment asserting that right-wingers created the climate of hate which led to his murder, for murder they presumed it to be.  One prominent left-wing blogger quickly ruled out suicide, writing

on September 26, “No Suicide: That’s the one thing we know for certain now in the case of the Kentucky lynching”…

Lynching?  Lynching?  Wonder if he’ll apologize for such overheated rhetoric now that an investigation has revealed the truth.

But, as we learned from the experience of the dishonest Joe Wilson, investigations don’t mean much to leftists when they don’t yield the result they want.

Well, at least we have one more piece of evidence of the hysteria of the left–and their readiness to slime conservatives even if the only “evidence” they have to back up their case is their own prejudice.

The O So Hip Obama

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 1:40 pm - November 25, 2009.
Filed under: Obamania

Sister Toldjah took the words right out of my mouth.  Discussing coverage in the New York Times and Washington Post (home base of the Democratic gusher Sally Quinn) of President Obama’s first state dinner last night, she writes, “Both pieces go in depth as to how ‘hip’ and ‘modern’ and ’stylish’ President Obama’s first state dinner was, and how marvelous the First Lady looked – implying a ‘departure’ of sorts for First Ladies in terms of style.

Look, I didn’t find anything particularly extraordinary about the First Lady’s dress and the President looked a tad uncomfortable in his tux.  James Bond he ain’t.  But, then, neither did either look like the equivalent of Björk at the 2001 Oscars.  Both looked fine and handled the public portions of the dinner quite well in a manner similar to that of their predecessors as host and hostess-in-chief.  (They just had more cronies and “corruptocats” at their dinner.)  The folks in the MSM, Ms. Quinn especially, seem to have created this narrative of the Obama’s style out of whole cloth, wanting so much for this era to be a new Camelot.

But, I don’t think many people outside the deep blue pockets in the deep blue islands on our nation’s coasts are paying much attention.  Michelle Obama is not the fashion icon that Jackie O was (before she was O).  And her husband may decorate the covers of various fashion magazines, but that’s an editorial choice and no longer a response to a popular demand.

Carly Fiorina’s Plan to Create Jobs: Unshackle the Entrepreneurs

When I first heard Carly Fiorina’s name batted around as a potential candidate to replace our state’s ineffective junior Senator, I was optimistic about her bid.  I believe we need more people from the private sector in government, those who know what it is like to keep an enterprise afloat in an ever-changing marketplace, those who know the cost of innovation and the burdens of government interference, regulations which can stymie that innovation and delay, if not prevent, job-creating expansion.

When I got to talk to her on Monday, I asked her to build on the point she made in her conversation with Greta van Susteren about job creation. In her answer, she offered broad principles for streamlining regulations in order to let small businesses grow and thus help us meet the most pressing need facing the Golden State, where one in eight adults is out of work, create jobs.  Unlike the woman she seeks to replace, Carly opposes vast federal schemes to increase government control over the marketplace and over our lives, knowing such regulation will make it increasingly difficult for businesses to grow while increasing the chances they’ll have to lay off employees just to stay afloat.

She talked about how various government departments have their own sets of regulation, meaning that an entrepreneur has to go through “multiple steps” just to set up a new business.  She wants to simplify this process.

To that end, she wants to review environmental regulations to make sure they’re accomplishing the goals of those who crafted them.  The second area of review would be employer mandates where she finds “lots of overlap.”  Finally, she wants to reduce the tax burden on businesses, fearing that in the current climate in Washington, there are “more [taxes] to come.”

It is Carly’s understanding of the burdens on business that makes me an enthusiastic supporter of her candiacy.   It is entrepreneurs who built the Golden State and entrepreneurs who can bring it back from the brink.   And it is they who, when their energies are unleashed, can expand existing enterprises and create new ones, thus creating the jobs we so desperately need in this one-time land of promise.

Looks like the thrill has found its way to Larry King’s leg

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 10:18 pm - November 24, 2009.
Filed under: Annoying Celebrities,Media Bias,Obamania

Well, the thrill may no longer be running up Chris Matthews’ leg, but over at CNN, his less partisan counterpart, seems to have gotten whatever thrill the MSNBC host lost.  Just got back from doing cardio at the gym and was treated to three-quarters of an hour of breathless coverage of President Obama’s first state dinner honoring India’s Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh.

Sally Quinn, fresh from questioning Sarah Palin’s faith on the O’Reilly Factor and on her blog, was gushing over the First Lady’s dress.  Her eyes lit up and she became animated when Larry King gave her the chance to talk about Mrs. Obama’s wardrobe.   “This is high fashion!”  ”What a striking woman!”  ”Jackie O has met her match!”

Then, they brought on Neeam Khan, the man who designed the dress for this most divine woman.  ”Oh what a gift to humanity you are!” gushed Ms. Sally.  ”That you have it within you to clothes worthy of this striking woman!”  ”Clearly you must be the first man to design the peplos for the next Panathenaia!”

Wonder if Larry ever so convered a state dinner during the George W. Bush years and if ever brought on the designer of any of Laura’s dresses while having a Republican partisan coo over the excellence of that classy First Lady’s attire.