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Had Obama given high school classmate a haircut, would narrative have been about how you can “make mistakes and still recover”?

In an interview during his Senate race” in 2004, reported Lois Romano of the Washington Post in 2007, “Obama said he admitted using drugs because he thought it was important for ‘young people who are already in circumstances that are far more difficult than mine to know that you can make mistakes and still recover.'”

Now, to be sure, Mitt Romney grew up under far more fortunate circumstances than Mr. Obama, but one wonders that if the legacy media had investigated something troubling in that latter’s past, they would have spun it as the Democrat spun his cocaine use.

Mitt Romney may or may not have given his high school classmate a haircut (in a bullying manner).  He has long since stopped pulling adolescent pranks.  Given his stable marriage and an adulthood filled with abundant acts of kindness for individual in need, Mitt Romney has quite obviously become a better person these past 47 years.  So too has Barack Obama since his high school years.

Had the Washington Post bothered to report Mr. Obama’s adolescent antics, one wonders if they would have covered it as they covered his cocaine use, stressing his ability to recover from mistakes — and casting his process of maturing as an example for young people to follow.

Jerry Brown’s California: An illustration from Melrose Avenue

Just shy of a year ago, I posted some pictures I took of empty storefronts on Melrose between Fairfax and La Brea.  Today, I chose just one block, this time west of Fairfax and found on the north side of the street (Melrose) between Edinburgh and Highland exactly as many empty storefronts as occupied ones:

If entrepreneurs weren’t vacating these stores, they could be paying taxes to the state of California, helping reduce it’s deficit while providing jobs for aspiring actors — and other Hollywood wannabes.

The very state policies which cause these enterprises to go belly-up account to a large degree for the state’s slumping revenues.  California has become one of the nation’s least-friendly states for small business.

As Jennifer Rubin puts it:

. . . unless you understand that California has the worst business climate in the country and its revenue projections turned out to be wildly over-optimistic. Reuters explains: “The deeper deficit forecast reflects the state’s uneven economic recovery: tax collections this year have fallen about $4 billion below projections, though many state legislators and economists had warned that the January revenue estimates were far too optimistic.”

And tax collections will continue to fall unless state legislators act to reduce the regulatory burden and adopt a more business-friendly tax structure. That alas does not seem to be on Governor Brown’s agenda.

Oh, and the south side of that block also has its share of vacant storefronts: (more…)

Increasing support for same-sex unions

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 3:45 pm - May 14, 2012.
Filed under: Gay Marriage,We The People

There are two new polls out which suggest that even as voters across the country reject state recognition of same-sex marriages, they are increasingly open to civil unions.  Given the care Gallup takes to survey a representative sample of the American population, we should have every confidence that theirs presents a pretty accurate portrait of American public opinion.

Their latest shows, as per their headline, U.S. Acceptance of Gay/Lesbian Relations Is the New Normal. Indeed.  Take a gander at this chart and look when the shift occurred:

During the Bush years, the 13-point advantage of those finding gay relations morally wrong was erased.

And this belief that gay/lesbian relations are morally acceptable accelerated in recent years. Another chart shows that more Americans find gay/lesbian relationships morally acceptable than believes same-sex marriages should be valid. Guess that means that all opponents of state recognized gay marriages are not haters — as goes the narrative.

By a 2-to-1 margin (63-31), Americans think gay and lesbian relationships between consenting adults should be legal. A CBS survey yields a similar result, showing that “62 percent – close to two thirds – of Americans believe that same-sex unions should be recognized by law.

With research from NYU political scientist Patrick Egan showing that “the share of voters in pre-election surveys saying that they will vote to ban same-sex marriage is typically seven percentage points lower than the actual vote on election day”, perhaps the better strategy toward improving the lot of gay people in relationships would be, in the present, to push for civil unions.

These numbers show just how greatly things are improving for gay people in America.  Attitudes are shifting.  Not all Americans may want to call our unions marriages, but increasingly, they respect their integrity and moral worth.  A good sign indeed.

Obama’s “political policy on same-sex marriage isn’t even different from Romney’s”

As usual you can count on blogress diva Ann Althouse for insightful commentary on events of the day.  And she does so again today with her thoughts on gay marriage and the 2012 election.

She agrees with us that Republicans should resist using the same-sex marriage issue against Obama:

The issues in this election should have to do with economics, foreign policy, and the things that fall squarely within a President’s responsibility. Obama has a record here, and he should have to defend it, not distract us with a “social” issue. His actual political policy on same-sex marriage isn’t even different from Romney’s: Leave it to the states. Leave it to the states is a fine — truly excellent — way to package the issue and set it to the side. I would encourage Republicans to do exactly that . . .

Emphasis added.  Just read the whole thing (via Instapundit).

I quibble slightly with Althouse’s spin, and would replace the word “actual” in the highlighted passage above with “effective.”  Romney does favor a constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman, thus precluding state recognition of same-sex unions.

The reason, however, I would use the word “effective” is that there is no way such an amendment could muster the necessary two-thirds majority in both houses of Congress in order to be sent to the states for ratification — and you need three-quarters of the states to agree to a constitutional amendment.  Ain’t gonna happen.

The only difference between Obama’s policy on gay marriage and Romney’s is rhetorical.  Just words.

Will Americans tire of the Democrats’ shiny objects?

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 3:48 am - May 14, 2012.
Filed under: 2012 Presidential Election,Media Bias

In recent days, the president’s strategy for reelection has become pretty clear; he means to distract voters from the anemic recovery as well as his unpopular health care overall, the nation’s debt and the impending insolvency of entitlements (not to mention his absence of solutions for the last two) by dangling bright shiny articles in front of a compliant media.

If voters decide the 2012 election based on Obama’s economic record,” observes the editors of the Washington Examiner, “he will lose.  And so the liberal media, as in love with him as ever, is helping him parade shiny objects to distract voters from that record.”

They want to make Mitt Romney appear so weird and out-of-touch that come November, voters will pinch their nose and vote for Obama only to spare us four years of Romney.  And so far, thanks in large part to a legacy media remarkably incurious about the failure of the Democratic Senate to vote on a budget for over three years or the Treasury Secretary’s acknowledgement that the administration has no plan to address the nation’s debt crisis, the Obama distraction strategy appears to be working.

This has led New York Times columnist Ross Douthat to ask “what this successful maneuvering is actually gaining the White House“:

The weaknesses it’s trying to exploit are real enough: the country is moving leftward on many social issues, and Romney’s mix of squareness and weirdness — the moneyed background, the Mormonism, the 1950s persona — makes it relatively easy to portray him as culturally out of touch.

But this would be a bigger problem for Republicans if the 2012 campaign were taking place amid prosperity and plenty.

In the end, people will likely look to their pocketbooks and realize how their purchasing power has declined over the past four years.  And they might just start getting tired of the endless distractions coming from our supposedly even-handed media that they may just tune them out.

Before our friends in the legacy media run after the next bright shiny object, they may want to talk to that boy who cried, “Wolf,” one too many times.