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Hipster in a Onesie – The New Face of Obamacare

Posted by V the K at 9:08 am - December 18, 2013.
Filed under: Era of Obamacare,Gay America

Sorry, fellas. He’s taken.

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The Federalist has a hilarious rundown of the mockery this latest Obamacare Propaganda inspired. My personal favorite after the break:

(more…)

I don’t even know how to respond to this…

I am (finally) completely speechless:

Nick (ColoradoPatriot, from The Ranch)

UPDATE (yea, it’s been a whole two minutes):
Come to think of it, it’s not the first time I’ve been left speechless by a House member…

UP-UPDATE: Here’s one along similar lines: Perhaps the new line from the Statists could be that the health insurance policies aren’t new…they’re just changed … see? it’s not different, it’s the same, just changed

…but then again, perhaps this is what they’re hearing when we try to explain to them that it is different:

McCaskill to everybody who doesn’t work for her: Drop Dead!

The benevolence of our overlords on display today as Senator Claire McCaskill of Missouri expresses her sympathy for those lowly prolitariat forced to abide by her legislative edicts.

As Lindsay Graham (of all people?!) actually shows some fortitude by insisting on a vote on the Vitter Amendment (which would subject all Hill employees, from the Senators and Representatives themselves to their most junior of staffers with the actual cost of Obamacare the rest of us have to suffer), the Rolla reprobate finds it within her generous heart to stand up for the less-fortunate. Er, or at least the less fortunate with whom she has the misfortune to have to be in physical contact on a regular basis. Her reaction:

“I don’t mind giving up mine,” Missouri Democrat Claire McCaskill said of the federal contribution to her personal health insurance. “I’m in a much [better situation] than the young ladies and the young men that work for me that have just gotten out of college with large student debts and that are still trying to figure out if they can afford the rent in Washington, D.C., or the car payment in Columbia, Mo.”

What about those less fortunate who aren’t blessed with working for someone who actually has the authority to exempt them from this horrific law? If those freshly-minted college graduates who work for Senator McCaskill deserve better, how about their contemporaries who have chosen a career in something more productive than water-carrying for legislative tyrants?

So here you have someone who voted for Obamacare admitting how unaffordable the “Affordable” Care Act is…so much so that she wishes to deliver folks burdened with it from under its onerous requirements.

If only her sympathy and sense of service extended beyond the few hundred square feet of her Senate office.

Truly incredible.

-Nick (ColoradoPatriot, from an Undisclosed Location)

The Dawn Davenport Presidency

By way of Michelle Malkin’s excellent website Twitchy, I’ve learned of two great hashtag nicknames for Obama and his administration in the past few days: #PresidentStompyFoot and #SpiteHouse.  As appropriate and amusing as those are, in thinking about his behavior, I’ve come up with another one lately which I like to imagine is just as good: President Cha-Cha Heels.

The reference, for those who don’t recognize it, is to Dawn Davenport, the spoiled teenager in John Waters’ 1974 film Female Trouble.  Although the film is one of Waters’ earlier efforts and is therefore full of the sort of rude, crude, and just plain gross humor and incidents which assured it an NC-17 rating, in some respects it is a useful parable about the evils of modern liberalism.

Here’s a brief synopsis: Dawn Davenport wants nothing more than a pair of “cha-cha heels” for Christmas, but when her parents refuse to get her any on the grounds that “nice girls don’t wear cha-cha heels,” she throws her mother into the Christmas tree, runs away from home, gets pregnant, and eventually becomes a criminal before being discovered by Donald and Donna Dasher, a couple who loves to photograph women committing crimes.  They make her famous, and she becomes even more notorious as a result.  The Dashers are the sort of liberals who embrace transgression as art and dysfunction as beauty, until Dawn goes berserk and then they try to pretend that they had nothing to do with it.

So what does this have to do with Obama?  Well, our petulant President seems rather like Dawn Davenport throwing a tantrum because he didn’t get any cha-cha heels to wear with his Mom jeans.

As Thomas Sowell wrote in an excellent article that appeared last Friday: “You cannot blame other people for not giving you everything you want. And it is a fraud to blame them when you refuse to use the money they did vote, even when it is ample to pay for everything else in the government.”

In any case, Obama doesn’t care.  He didn’t get his cha-cha heels, and so he’s determined to “walk all over you,” in the words of this catchy tune inspired by the story of Dawn Davenport and performed by Eartha Kitt and Bronski Beat:

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Unfortunately, like the Dashers, his enablers in the press and the liberals who voted for him are rallying around him as though there’s nothing offensive, disturbing, or troubling about his dishonest and spiteful behavior.

 

Fun Obamacare ad hits college campuses

Generation Opportunity, “a free-thinking, liberty-loving, national organization of young people”, has set up OptOut.org to let young people know that they needn’t (and probably shouldn’t) sign up for Obamacare. Their current ad for young women:

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(Male version, here.)

Now for the ‘media bias’ angle. I learned about this from Yahoo! which, naturally, has titled their article “Creepy Obamacare ad hits college campuses”.

In other words: Even after all the government-spying scandals, Big Government-run health care (that costs a young woman far more than she’ll get from it, despite the fine they’ll extort for her saying ‘no’) still doesn’t strike Yahoo! News as creepy. But ads against it, they’ll suggestively title as ‘creepy’.

FROM THE COMMENTS (thank you Kurt): Get ready for Obama(care) to ask detailed questions about your sex life. Umm…I thought that was only supposed to happen under the Religious Reich Theocracy that the Left always warns us against?

The president’s “reforms” aim to turn doctors into government agents, pressuring them financially to ask questions they consider inappropriate and unnecessary…

Doctors and hospitals who don’t comply with the federal government’s electronic-health-records requirements forgo incentive payments…

…the new requirements are turning it “into an interrogation, and the data will not be confidential.” Lack of confidentiality is what concerned the New York Civil Liberties Union in a 2012 report…

Privacy and confidentiality will just be for the rich:

The administration is ignoring [various] protests from privacy advocates. On Jan. 17, HHS announced patients who want to keep something out of their electronic record should pay cash.

“Thanks, Obama!”

Living in the present in challenging times

Several of my Facebook friends like to post inspirational and thought-provoking quotes on a regular basis.  Two or three of them have recently posted a quote which has been attributed to Lao Tzu which reads:

If you are depressed you are living in the past.
If you are anxious you are living in the future.
If you are at peace you are living in the present.

As someone who has lately been bouncing back and forth between these states of mind, I can appreciate the essential wisdom of the quote.  Most of my feelings of depression lately have been spurred on by my regrets about things I wish I had done differently in my life, and so in that regard, they are an instance of dwelling in the past.  Most of my anxiety stems from my concerns about where our country is headed under its current leadership (or lack thereof), and my feelings of uncertainty or even paralysis as to what is or should be the best path for me to take from this point forward.  The more I think about it, the more overwhelming the many different options start to become.

Partly because of the circumstances which have fueled both my recent feelings of depression and of anxiety, I also have to wonder whether or not the “living in the present” endorsed by the quote is really so desirable after all.  When things are going well, yes, that sounds ideal, but isn’t there the risk of a sort of complacency which can result in self-indulgence, lack of ambition and disengagement?
I thought of these points and more yesterday when Glenn Reynolds linked to a post by Sarah Hoyt entitled “If You Don’t Work, You Die.”  In the post, Hoyt reflects on the importance of what she refers to as envy and striving for growth and life, which, to my mind suggests a certain resistance to complacency.  She reflects on an experiment in Denver in the 1970s with a guaranteed minimum income and the finding that a certain segment of the population was content to live on it and to stop striving to better their lives, and she speculates that it is partly an inherited trait which had value in the conservation of social energy.  The part of the post that fascinated me the most was when she described herself in the following terms:
Some of us are broken.  We were given both envy and high principles.  We can’t even contemplate bringing others down to level things, but instead we work madly to increase our status.  (No, it’s not how I think about it, but it’s probably what’s going on in the back of the monkey brain.)  Most of humanity however is functional.  Give them enough to eat, and a place to live, and no matter how unvaried the diet and how small/terrible the place, most people will stay put.
It seems to me that she has hit on something crucial there because although I’m often tempted to focus on being content with things the way are, every so often something happens to jar me from that state of mind, either by making me feel depressed or anxious or by throwing me off balance completely with some new dream or hope.
I’d like to write more about the disruptive power and potential value of such dreams, but for the time being, I’d like to pose a question for our readers.   When we live in difficult and challenging times, how can one try to remain “in the present” without falling into complacency or without becoming disengaged from the sorts of issues and problems that threaten to make existence even more trying and difficult?

Capricious Enforcement: A sign of the times

Back in October 2010, blogger Tigerhawk recalled what one of his Princeton classmates, who was originally from Romania, said about the nature of life under socialism:

One recurring tool of socialist tyranny is the capricious enforcement of unworkable laws.

He quoted the passage in making a point about the “capricious enforcement” which was an inevitable feature of the unworkable mess better known as Obamacare.

But two and a half years later, it’s evident that observation could just as easily have been applied to our byzantine tax code, our environmental regulations, and even laws pertaining to press freedoms under the Obama administration.  As Dan wrote earlier today, the only folks who are surprised by any of these scandals are the ones who haven’t been paying attention to what has been going with our government since January 20, 2009.

In the case of the Obama administration, though, it’s not strictly capricious enforcement, but selective enforcement, always with a partisan goal in mind.  The IRS targeting of the Tea Party and conservative organizations is appalling, but one would have to be naive not to believe, as ABC’s Trey Hardin noted today, that it wasn’t authorized by someone in the West Wing.  Hardin observed (audio at the link):

I will tell you this on the IRS front. I’ve worked in this town for over 20 years in the White House and on Capitol Hill and I can say with a very strong sense of certainty that there are people very close to this president that not only knew what the IRS were doing but authorized it. It simply just does not happen at an agency level like that without political advisers likely in the West Wing certainly connected to the president’s ongoing campaign organization.

And it’s not just the IRS.  Earlier today it came out that the EPA waived fees for leftist organizations and leftist journalists who requested information, but not for conservative ones:   “Conservative groups seeking information from the Environmental Protection Agency have been routinely hindered by fees normally waived for media and watchdog groups, while fees for more than 90 percent of requests from green groups were waived, according to requests reviewed by the Competitive Enterprise Institute.”  Yes, this would be the same EPA that has classified carbon dioxide as a pollutant, making the mere act of exhaling potentially troublesome.

A coincidence?  I think not.  This is the same administration committed to picking winners and losers on most matters.  Hence, it should surprise no one that while oil companies are prosecuted for the deaths of eagles and other protected species, the bird-killing wind farms are naturally given a pass.   Clearly, some energy companies are more equal than others.

It’s the same with journalists.  Just a day after the AP snooping scandal broke, the administration is playing favorites again.  Jake Tapper has gained a reputation as one who can be counted on to ask tough questions of the White House with greater frequency than the reporters at most of the other lamestream news organizations.  Well, today Professor Jacobson at Legal Insurrection is reporting that the White House played Jake Tapper by selectively leaking one e-mail with the apparent aim of creating a diversion in the reporting about the Benghazi cover-up.  Jacobson writes: “Like I said, this entire diversion of leaking a single email out of a chain of emails to Tapper was simply meant to put critics of the administration back on their heels and to provide an excuse for White House defenders to throw around words like ‘doctored.’”

And so what else do we see today?  Well, all of a sudden the administration’s lackeys in the press such as Hilary Rosen are now out expressing their sympathy for poor Jay Carney.  I guess they’re afraid of ending up as the subject of a DOJ snooping scandal or an IRS investigation or a selective leak.

 

Big Government drives the economy underground

Some days ago, cnbc.com ran an article called $2 Trillion Underground Economy May Be Recovery’s Savior. It uses quotes from experts:

The shadow economy is a system composed of those who can’t find a full-time or regular job…

“You normally see underground economies in places like Brazil or in southern Europe,”…

Estimates are that underground activity last year totaled as much as $2 trillion…double the amount in 2009, according to a study… “The jobs are in service industries from small food establishments to landscaping.”…

A report from ADP Research Institute states that many employers, especially in low-wage businesses such as retail and food service, plan to reduce workers’ hours to less than 30 a week to avoid having to offer health benefits through Obamacare…

“The result is less tax money paid to the various levels of government.” “Those working and not paying the taxes puts the burden on those who pay the tax,”…

Workers who aren’t on the books don’t get Social Security or health benefits…

Several points here leap out at me.

  1. How Obamacare destroys full-time jobs, as predicted by many on the Right before it passed.
  2. How ‘normal’ taxation creates Second or Third World conditions in the economy.
  3. How people can at least survive, when taxes are lower (or absent).
  4. The experts’ and media’s cluelessness about all this. Despite the information presented by the article, its unspoken perspective remains that government is robbed, when people avoid taxes. Umm… how about people being robbed, when an excessively large and redistributive government taxes them so heavily that they (or their potential employers / trading partners) are forced into the underground economy?

In other words: Shouldn’t we shrink government and lower taxes enough that people won’t need to be in the underground economy?

That’s the question these articles never ask; the one you’re supposed to never think about. They are always written from an assumption that people do something illegitimate, when they avoid the government’s tax man; never from an assumption that the government does something illegitimate, when it charges people enough to drive them to it.

Obamacare Schadenfreude: April Jobs Report Edition

Something strange happened with the latest jobs report.  A few lamestream press outlets woke up from their Obama-induced daze long enough to recognize that although the unemployment figure is purportedly lower than it was in March, and lower than it has been in some time, things don’t seem quite right with the numbers.   Just seeing them grapple with the data and begin to recognize its implications has brought on my latest instance of Obamacare Schadenfreude.

Let’s begin with the National Journal.  Today its website ran a story entitled “Forget the Unemployment Rate: The Alarming Stat Is the Number of ‘Missing Workers.’”  The story begins by summarizing the “unexpected” state of affairs:

The federal government’s latest snapshot of the unemployment rate offered few bright spots Friday. The economy added 165,000 jobs in April—slightly better than March’s revised number of 138,000 jobs. Unemployment went down one-tenth of a percentage point to 7.5 percent; and health care, retail trade, and the food-services industry added positions.

The glaring caveat to this jobs report is the huge number of Americans who remain out of the workforce. Called the “labor force participation rate” in wonkspeak, that number held steady in April at 63.3 percent—the lowest level since 1979.

The story goes on to speculate about the causes behind the decreased labor force participation rate, explaining that some of the number–but by no means all–can be explained by the fact that the first of the baby boomers have now reached retirement age.  The article says that beyond retirees, “Roughly 3 million to 5 million of them left because they could not find jobs, economists estimate.”

But the article doesn’t stop there.  It recognizes that decreased labor force participation has serious economic implications for government because it decreases revenues coming in from taxes.  Suddenly, in other words, the decreasing labor force in the United States is much more of a matter of concern than it was a year ago when Obama was facing re-election, because it doesn’t bode well for the future of the economy or the budget (something that conservatives have been pointing out for years):

If these workers do not return to the labor market, their absence may alter the country’s budget picture. “One of the biggest problems we face with the baby-boomer bulge in retirement is having enough workers behind them to pay their bills,” says Harry Holzer, a professor at Georgetown University’s Public Policy Institute.

Missing workers can translate to a decrease in tax revenue, coupled with an increase in the use of government benefits, such as food stamps and disability insurance. The number of Americans collecting food stamps hit a high of 47.8 million people in December 2012. A similar spike has occurred in enrollments for the Social Security disability payments.

Since the start of 2007, the percentage of Americans in the labor market has dropped from 66.4 percent to 63.3 percent. In the 1970s and 1980s, the number of working Americans grew—because of the dramatic increase in women holding jobs outside of the home.

Nancy Cook ends her article by quoting a very optimistic prediction that unemployment will eventually fall to around 5.5% by 2017, but then she notes, ominously, “Only then can economists gauge if people have left the workforce because of the downturn in the economy, or if they’ve left forever because the economy fundamentally changed. If that’s the case, the U.S. officially will become a place where the labor market has little use for millions of Americans.”

The National Journal article, though, isn’t the only such piece by a lamestream press outlet today.  None other than the Gray Lady herself suddenly woke up and noticed the missing workers: (more…)

Name that Obama-era affliction

In a previous post, I wrote about Obamacare Schadenfreude, that feeling of amusement when some ardent supporters of Obamacare realize that that monstrous piece of legislation will have negative consequences for them or for causes about which they claim to care.  I was reminded of that post again yesterday when I heard that one of the authors of Obamacare, Max Baucus (D-Montana), complained that the implementation of Obamacare was going to be a “huge train-wreck coming down.”

Likewise, a little over a week ago, Jay Rockefeller (D-West Virginia) complained about the incomprehensible complexity of the law:  “‘I believe that the Affordable Care Act is probably the most complex piece of legislation ever passed by the United States Congress,’ he said, as quoted in the Washington Examiner. ‘Tax reform obviously has been huge, too, but up to this point it is just beyond comprehension.’”  My response to both Senators is simply to respond:  well, isn’t that just too bad.

Today, though, I’d rather write about another Obama-era affliction which I’ve been suffering with since late January 2009.    It is something akin to depression, and it is brought on or exacerbated by the daily outrages resulting from this administration’s policies.

Sometimes it boils up to anger which gives me more energy, but at other times I feel listless and unmotivated or even hopeless.  At times, I get by just focusing on the routines and necessary activities of my daily life, but sometimes even those feel like a burden.  Writing about the issues can be therapeutic, though there are many times when I’d rather not think about them at all.

So what to call this condition?  “Obamalaise” came to mind, but I think others have used that to describe the lingering weakness in our economy.

I also thought of “Obama Weltschmerz.”  That conveys the angst and depression, and I like the fact that, like Obamacare Schadenfreude, it uses a German word.  As I see it, the use of a German word helps to communicate my sense that Obama’s America feels like it’s headed towards the sort of economic collapse which characterized Weimar Germany.

Maybe that’s too dark.  “Obamanomie” communicates a sense of impending social instability and alienation.  That might get at the matter a little better, though it’s perhaps even more depressing to think about.

In any case, I know I’m not the only one suffering with this condition.  I suspect many of our readers are, too.  What would you call it?

Obamacare Schadenfreude

Back in 2004, James Piereson coined the phrase “Punitive Liberalism” to describe a particular malady common in the days of severe Bush Derangement Syndrome.  James Taranto introduced many of us to the idea when he wrote:

Writing in The Weekly Standard, James Piereson offers a useful addition to the American political glossary: “punitive liberalism.” This “bizarre doctrine,” which found its fullest expression in the presidency of Jimmy Carter, holds that “America had been responsible for numerous crimes and misdeeds through its history for which it deserved punishment and chastisement.” Those who disagree “were written off as ignorant patriots who could not face up to the sins of the past.”  (Hat Tip: Ace; the original version of Taranto’s piece is only available currently at the Wayback Machine)

It is with some trepidation, therefore, that I describe some symptoms I have been experienced with increasing frequency over the last few months.

I first noticed the condition when I read, a few weeks after the election, that the Community College of Allegheny County in Pennsylvania was cutting “the hours of 400 adjunct instructors, support staff, and part-time instructors to dodge paying for Obamacare.”

“It’s kind of a double whammy for us because we are facing a legal requirement [under the new law] to get health care and if the college is reducing our hours, we don’t have the money to pay for it,” said adjunct biology professor Adam Davis.

My reaction?  When I read that, I could hear (to borrow a phrase from Taranto) one of the world’s tiniest violins playing in the background. I actually laughed and felt relieved about something in the political world for what may have been the first time since the disaster known as the 2012 Presidential Election.  Yes, I thought, even the leftists in academia will not manage to avoid paying for the mess that is Obamacare, and it will cost some of them far more than they imagined.

Then just a few days ago, I had an even stronger reaction when I heard that some unions were petitioning the  administration for special subsidies to defray the high cost of insurance under Obamacare.  Rick Ungar writes in Forbes:

Unhappy that important improvements in insurance benefits resulting from the healthcare reform law will now cost employers with union workers a bit more—improvements such as no longer permitting insurance policies to place the yearly and lifetime caps on benefits that leave beneficiaries high, dry and broke should they suffer a serious and expensive illness—some labor unions are now asking the government to change the rules to allow low-earning union workers access to the government subsidies so that their employers will not be disadvantaged when competing with companies who have non-union employees.

Yes, you read that correctly.  Becket Adams at the Blaze elaborates further:

No, really, union heads are acting like no one warned them that costs would go up.

“We are going back to the administration to say that this is not acceptable,” said Ken Hall, general secretary-treasurer for the Teamsters.

“I heard him say, ‘If you like your health plan, you can keep it,’” said John Wilhelm, chairman of Unite Here Health, the insurance plan for 260,000 union workers. “If I’m wrong, and the president does not intend to keep his word, I would have severe second thoughts about the law.”

Why? Why? Why didn’t anyone tell these leaders about the costs associated with “Obamacare”? (more…)

Will the GOP Ticket Win 2012 Election On Medicare Debate?

That seems to be one of the major calculations behind Mitt Romney’s selection of Paul Ryan as his VP nominee.  This weekend, Ryan stood in front of thousands at The Villages senior community in Florida to deliver the GOP message on Medicare.

We can’t allow Medicare to be the piggybank for Obamacare.

Awesome!

RELATED ITEM: Fighting to Win – Stephen Hayes at Weekly Standard

Too much focus on Medicare for Democrats? Republicans could campaign on entitlement reform and win? A running mate who actually will affect the outcome of a presidential race? So much for conventional wisdom.

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

EXPECTEDLY! Obama Recovery WORSE
Than Recession For Americans’ Income

When our President is beholden to union special interests and a failed Keynesian economic dogma, most of us could have  did predict his “recovery” plans would have been a complete FAIL.

From Ed Morrissey at HotAir.com:

When running for President, Barack Obama decried the decline of American household income, which certainly dropped during the 2007-2009 Great Recession.  Since the recovery began in June 2009 — a recovery for which Obama has repeatedly claimed credit — that trend has gotten worse, not better.  A new report shows that the percentage of decline in household income during the so-called recovery actually doubled that of the recession:

During the recession, which economists say lasted from Dec. 2007 to June 2009, the median annual household income fell by 3.2 percent, from $55,309 to $53,518, according to a report authored by two former U.S. Census Bureau officials. But in the post-recession period from June 2009 to June 2011, the figure fell by 6.7 percent, from $53,518 in June 2009 to $49,909 in June 2011. …

The study found that during the post-recessionary period, families with just a male or female head with no spouse present saw a 7.3 percent decline in income compared to the 4.5 percent drop for married-couple households. Income for households with a head under the age of 25 fell by 9.5 percent, significantly more than the 5.5 percent decline for households with a head who is 45 to 54 years old.

Again, I repeat: Our President Spent $787 Billion Dollars Of Our Money And We Got Was This Lousy 9.1% Unemployment Rate (Forever…)

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

What the (Need For a) Court Challenge to Obamacare Says (Negatively) About America

So I’m reading today how the Stalinization of Healthcare Act of 2010 is facing renewed Constitutional scrutiny, this time at the hands of a three-judge panel on the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Georgia. Much hay has been made since the passage of the monstrosity and immediate court challenges thereto of the political make-up of the judges who have so far heard arguments and their seemingly ideologically mirrored conclusions about the federal government’s Constitutional authority to force its subjects citizens to purchase a service for no other reason than that they happen to live in America. Which is to say, up until now, every judge appointed by a Democrat has sided with the Administration, and every Republican-appointed judge has sided with Americans.

What’s gratifying about what we learned today is that members of the panel of the 11th hearing this particular case (this is the one in which twenty-six states have filed suit), made up of two Clinton appointees and on GHWBush appointee, are skeptical of the Administration’s position. If they were to rule the way observers are thinking they will, it’d be the first time a body representing the judicial branch has, ahem, crossed the aisle.

And to be honest, that’s what’s making me grit my teeth a little bit.

Yes, yes, yes. I’m all upset (or whatever) about the “politicization of the Judicial Branch…”

And yes. It’s always grated on me how the Left in America tends to go bawling to the Bar when they can’t convince a majority of their fellow citizens to go along with their cockamamie schemes. When accusations of ‘hate’, ad hominem insults, and attempts to shame voters (or legislators) into going their way don’t seem to win the other side over (imagine, huh?), the Left seems all too prepared time after time to lawyer-up and take their adversaries to court, rather than ever attempting (really) to settle their difference the good old-fashioned representative democratic (“American!”) way: at the ballot box.

So that’s partly—but only partly—why if (hopefully when) this charlie foxtrot is finally dispensed with, it’ll be a Pyrrhic victory for us. Not only because we had to go hat-in-hand to the Black Robed Sages like a bunch of little bitches…

No, no. It’s because this whole national humiliation has said some very troubling things about the state of our alleged democratic republic.

Consider: (more…)

NY TIMES: Earmark Ban Already Having Important Impact

Well, well, well…. (h/t – Instapundit)

Even Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio, who made battling earmarks a cornerstone of his Congressional career since his election in 1990, said he would not have predicted that Congress could kick the habit.

“Think of this fight we have had for 20 years,” Mr. Boehner said in a recent interview. “If somebody would have asked me, ‘Will you ever get there?’ I would have had my doubts.”

But through a confluence of events, Mr. Boehner and the rest of the anti-earmark crowd did get there; the impact of the decision by leaders of the House and the Senate to ban earmarks for at least the next two years is already being felt.

When House Republicans were searching for cuts to offer Senate Democrats as part of a temporary spending plan to avert a government shutdown, they were able to reach into accounts set aside for earmarks and find nearly $2.8 billion that would have previously gone to water projects, transit programs and construction programs. No earmarks, no need for that money, and the threat of an imminent shutdown was eased.

Lawmakers said the absence of earmarks also allowed for a more freewheeling debate on the House floor during consideration of the Republican plan to slash $61 billion from this year’s budget since Democrats and Republicans were not caught up in protecting the special provisions they had worked so hard to tuck into the spending bill.

ACTUAL change you can believe in.  Boehner’s Congress has already shown to be a better steward of our money than every Congress in a generation before.

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

Party Like It’s 1773!

A good reminder of the significance of this date…. from the Heritage Foundation.

On this day in 1773, a group of colonists disguised as Indians boarded British merchant ships and dumped into the Boston Harbor an estimated £10,000 worth of tea as a protest against British colonial policies.. John Adams declared this event, that we celebrate today as the Boston Tea Party, to be the “grandest event which has ever yet happened since the controversy with Britain opened.” What led once loyal colonists to protest the World’s leading power?  How should we think about the Tea Party two hundred thirty-seven years later?

The American Revolution began as a tax revolt. After defeating France in the Seven Years’ War (which began in North America as the French and Indian War), Great Britain gained control over vast areas of land in the Americas, but also incurred massive debts. For the first time, Parliament looked to the American colonies as a source of revenue, and so began the long train of abuses against the American colonies. The American Revenue Act (sometimes called the Sugar Act) expanded import and export duties and created new government mechanisms to enforce trade laws. The Stamp Act was the first direct tax levied on America, requiring all newspapers, almanacs, pamphlets, and official documents—even decks of playing cards!—to have stamps as proof of payment of taxes.

These new policies outraged the colonists. The problem with the policies was not the amount of taxation—the taxes were actually quite low—but the process by which the British government imposed and enforced these taxes. As loyal colonists, the Americans recognized Parliament’s authority to legislate for the empire generally. But, the power to tax was a legislative power reserved to the colonists’ own assemblies rather than a distant legislature in London. The English Bill of Rights of 1689 had forbidden the imposition of taxes without legislative consent, and since the colonists had no representation in parliament they complained that the taxes violated their traditional rights. Thus the American’s rallying cry became: “No taxation without representation!”

The British rejected the Americans’ argument for self-government. The Declaratory Act of 1766, asserted Parliament’s absolute sovereignty over the Americans, including the power to make laws for the colonies “in all cases whatsoever.” “No taxation without representation” meant no taxation without the approval of the British Parliament. It never literally meant—not for the Americans or even for the overwhelming majority of British citizens—representation in that body. The colonists, like all British subjects, enjoyed “virtual representation” of their interests by the aristocrats that controlled Parliament.

After repealing the earlier taxes, the British government passed a new series of revenue measures (called the Townshend Acts) in 1767, which taxed goods such as paper, glass, lead, and tea—and once again affirmed the power of British courts to issue undefined and open-ended search warrants (called “writs of assistance”) to enforce the law. Asserting that the sole right of taxation was with the colonial legislature, Virginia proposed a formal agreement among the colonies banning the importation of British goods—a practice that quickly spread to the other local legislatures and cut the colonial import of British goods in half. So Parliament eventually repealed those duties, too, except for the tax on tea.

Our forefathers did not destroy the tea cargo because of a simple tax dispute. At issue were the principles of self-government, consent, and natural rights. These principles are enunciated in the Declaration of Independence and continue to define us as a nation and inspire us as a people.

In 2010, we have our own intolerable act—Obamacare, a massive bureaucratic expansion of government over one-sixth of the American economy and many aspects of our lives and medical decisions. But there is a key difference between the situation now and that of 1773. Those early patriots had to establish their independence and to start anew. But, our task is different. “It is not about fixed bayonets but fixed principles; not about bullets but ballots. Our task is not to overthrow; it is not revolution; it is renewal and restoration of those self-evident truths of constitutional government at the heart of America.”

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

I WANT YOUR MONEY — Coming October 15th

The trailer.  The website.

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

TONIGHT at 8:30PM – GayPatriot’s America on BlogTalkRadio

Wow…. two weeks in a row, baby!  Tonight I’ll be talking with Ben Howe — a conservative activist and host of BTR’s “Renewing America”.  Ben attended the “Restoring Honor” rally in DC on Saturday and has some on-the-scene commentary to share. 

(Photo courtesy of Jon Ward from The Daily Caller)

Oh yeah… and I’m broadcasting tonight live from our nation’s capital — Washington, DC.  I couldn’t make it for the 8/28 rally, but I’m here this week for my “real” job.

And I’m just a few blocks from The White House.  Maybe I’ll hop on over to 1600 Penn Ave and ask Michelle for a crumpet.

Tune in tonight at 8:30PM for GayPatriot’s America.  We have a great chat room too!

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

The Plague of Unemployment Spreading Across USA

Note the jump in unemployment AFTER the “Stimulus” passed in February 2009. (h/t – Instapundit)

HOPE AND CHANGE!

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

Breaking News: Left Devoid of Perspective, Humor, and Irony. (Related: World Ends.)

Okay, so let me get this straight:

The ever-so nuanced and most brilliant leader in a generation, President Obama, comes out after the passage of Obamacare and declares that:

I’m not exaggerating…Leaders of the Republican Party … called the passage of [The Stalinization of Health Care Act of 2010] “Armageddon.”…

So after I signed the bill, I looked around to see if there were any asteroids falling or some cracks opening up in the earth. Turned out it was a nice day. Birds were chirping. Folks were strolling down the Mall.

(my emphasis)

Now there’s a guy who knows the power of words. Or something. We’re to believe the leader of the Free World and what they’d have us believe is the most eloquent speaker of our generation is so dense he can’t tell a rhetorical flourish when he hears one? He can’t discern methaphorical language? Perhaps it’s a certain font on the TelePrompter, and if he’s not reading it, he doesn’t recognize it.

Anyway, comes now the toadies in the left to once again jump on an actual professional speaker, Rush Limbaugh.

In a mockery of the mockery, Rush has this to say:

You know, a couple of days after the health care bill had been signed into law Obama ran around all over the country saying, ‘Hey, you know, I’m looking around. The earth hadn’t opened up. There’s no Armageddon out there. The birds are still chirping.’ I think the earth has opened up. God may have replied. This volcano in Iceland has grounded more airplanes — airspace has more affected — than even after 9/11 because of this plume…Earth has opened up. I don’t know whether it’s a rebirth or Armageddon. Hopefully it’s a rebirth.

How does the Left play this? deadpan serious and completely without irony.

It’s not the president to them who looks like the jackass by completely missing the point and condescendingly belittling those who’d rather not have Kathleen Sebelius determine thier health care needs. It’s Rush Limbaugh for pointing it out.

Coming next? Criticism for Limbaugh saying “Obama ran around all over the country”. Technically, he flew on Air Force One. Sheesh, doesn’t this guy do any fact-checking before he shoots his mouth off?

Score another one for the death of Poetry.

-Nick (ColoradoPatriot, from TML)

UPDATE (from Dan, trying to be funny):  But, doesn’t Obama realize that the bill doesn’t kick in until 2014.  Guess he wanted to give us time to prepare for Armageddon.