Saturday, October 15, 2011

A Jesse Jackson Plan I Can Almost Agree With

I came across a FOX News article earlier today stating that Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. has proposed that the federal government hire all unemployed Americans at a salary of $40,000. Initially, I considered the plan ridiculous. However, I later realized that the government is already paying most of these people $17,000 for not working. I could accept the Jackson proposal with the following changes:

1) Use this proposal to replace the current unemployment system. No more unemployment paid to people who are not working. Instead, you come work for the government 3 days each week and document at least 8 hours of work searching for a job on the other two days. Meet the work requirements: get your check. However, just like the current unemployment system, this opportunity to work for the government would expire after a set number of weeks.

2) Reduce the salary to around $20,000. This would reduce the burden that would be placed on the government and would give people incentive to continue searching for work instead of living off of the government.

3) Only those currently eligible for the unemployment system would receive benefits. If you quit or are fired and would be ineligible for unemployment, you receive no benefits.

This plan would be financed by the current unemployment taxes. It would also benefit the federal, state, and local governments by giving them added labor without much added cost. (Imagine the cost savings this winter if we had those on unemployment blowing snow off the sidewalks instead of paying overtime.) It would also benefit the unemployed by allowing them to gain experience and skills, which could increase their marketability. Furthermore, it would reduce the hesitancy of employers to hire unemployed workers, since they know that the person has not just been sitting around collecting a check for weeks. If we implement the above changes to this proposal, it might just become a Democratic jobs plan that I could actually support.

UPDATE: I just want to add that I do not support the portion of his proposal to bail out state and local governments. The only part of this proposal I support is putting the unemployed to work.

Friday, October 14, 2011

The Final Five: October 14, 2011

The Final Five: Bedtime Stories for Conservatives
October 14, 2011

Tonight's Crazy Story
If you are trying to impersonate a police office, it might not turn out too well if you pull over an actual police officer. Read what happened at The Blaze.

Tonight's Final Five:

The Occupy Wall Street protesters claim that they are standing up against greed. However, Erick Erickson argues on RedState that even these protesters are motivated by greed.

Much has been made of Rick Perry's switch from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party. However, PajamasMedia's Bryan Preston argues that a party switcher might actually be better than an "always-been" Republican.

Taking a break...
To laugh a little
"Big Ben is leaning to one side, but they think that it might be able to somehow correct itself. And I thought well, yeah, look at Mitt Romney. He used to lean to the left, now he leans to the right."
-David Letterman, 10/13/11

Now Back to The Final Five

As TARP turns three, Forbes's Richard Salsman takes a look at its lack of accomplishments.

President Obama has declared, "This is not class warfare, this is math." Milton Wolf from The Washington Times takes a look at the math behind the President's policies.

The Republican National Committee publishes another set of numbers explaining the "accomplishments" of the Obama Presidency. Courtsey of The Weekly Standard.

Tomorrow in History: October 15
October 15, 1878 - The Edison Electric Light Company begins operation.

Food For Thought - A Bedtime Snack
"A feeble executive implies a feeble execution of the government. A feeble execution is but another phrase for a bad execution; and a government ill executed, whatever may be its theory, must be, in practice, a bad government."
-Alexander Hamilton

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Perry States the Obvious

I came across a video today in which Rick Perry stated the obvious: he's not good at debating.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Final Five: October 13, 2011

The Final Five: Bedtime Stories for Conservatives
October 13, 2011

Tonight's Crazy Story
If you thought the story about a man throwing a hot dog at Tiger Woods was crazy, just wait until you hear his reasons for attempting this action.

Tonight's Final Five:

Ann Coulter writes that one good effect of the "Occupy Wall Street" protests is that the protesters ended their "Occupy Our Mother's Basements" initiative. While their location may have changed, their parasitic ways of living on other's money has not.

While Obama has been quick to point out persecution of Muslims, he has been slow to point out the persecution of Christians by the Muslims. A Washington Times editorial explains why Christians have little reason to support the President.

Taking a break...
To laugh a little
"President Obama had beer with four unemployed construction workers. And Obama asked the guys what was it like to lose their jobs, and they were like, “Oh, you’ll see."
-Jimmy Fallon, 10/12/11

Now Back to The Final Five

Obama was elected with zealous support from the Democratic base, but that support has faded during his term. National Review Online's Victor Davis Hanson boils the fading support down to two factors: war and Wall Street.

Commentary Magazine's Peter Wehner analyzes the growing unity in the country. While the tea party and the Wall Street protesters may disagree on almost everything, both appear to have lost faith in our government and its leaders.

Peter Wallison explains for the Wall Street Journal why the Occupy Wall Street protesters have good reason to be angry, but they need to direct their anger at the people truly responsible for the problems.

Tomorrow in History: October 14
October 14, 1884 - Inventor George Eastman receives a patent for his new paper-strip photographic film.

Food For Thought - A Bedtime Snack
"Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom of Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops that can be, on any pretence, raised in the United States."
-Noah Webster

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Guide to Protesters

Make sure you understand the difference between the Occupy Wall Street protesters and the Tea Party.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Final Five: October 12, 2011

The Final Five: Bedtime Stories for Conservatives
October 12, 2011

Tonight's Crazy Story
Corn mazes are a fun part of the fall season. However, it turned scary for one family when they couldn't find their way out and all the staff left them in the maze. See the report from FOX News.

Tonight's Final Five:

A new economic prediction says that we are headed for another recession. That's bad news for the Democrats. Unfortunately, it's also bad news for the Republicans, who if elected, will have to deal with the mess left behind by the current administration. Jonathan Tobin analyzes at Commentary Magazine.

Obama's struggles are giving the hard left a nervous breakdown. The Wall Street Journal's James Taranto analyzes why the left is struggling with the reality of their President.

Taking a break...
To laugh a little
"Happy birthday to Bo, the White House dog. Do you know difference between Obama's dog and the economy? Obama fixed the dog."
-David Letterman, 10/11/11

Now Back to The Final Five

Rohan Poojara argues at Real Clear Markets that we need to reform our immigration system to allow for high-skilled, legal immigration that would improve our competitiveness.

Monty Pelerin at American Thinker argues that Obama's biggest problem is himself: he had a great marketing team and a media that supported him, but people cannot be fooled by the same poor product twice.

Eli Lehrer and Ike Brannon lay out the case for a simplification of the tax code: cut tax rates and reduce deductions.

Tomorrow in History: October 13
October 13, 1775 - The Continental Congress establishes the first American Navy.

Food For Thought - A Bedtime Snack
"But a Constitution of Government once changed from Freedom, can never be restored. Liberty, once lost, is lost forever."
-John Adams

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Mr. President: If The Jobs Bill Is So Great...

...why can't your own party pass it? A Senate vote for cloture failed; falling 10 votes short of the 60 needed to end debate and schedule a vote. Since Sen. Jim Webb (D-VA) stated that he would vote for cloture but against the bill, that leaves only 49 votes in support of the jobs bill.

In the aftermath of the vote, the President accused Republicans of obstruction. Since each chamber is controlled by a different party, perhaps the hypocrite-in-chief should present a bill that at least one chamber can support. It's hard to convince Republicans that this is good legislation when the Senate, controlled by the President's own party, can't even pass it.

Consider Me "Intellectually Dishonest"

Chris Christie told me yesterday that I am intellectually dishonest. Christie stated, "Any attempt to try to compare what happened in Massachusetts and what the president has done to the United States of America with his plan is completely intellectually dishonest." Well, I'm about to continue my "dishonest" ways (at least in Christie's opinion).

Here's some of the similarities between the Obama and Romney plans:
  • Both require individuals to purchase healthcare coverage or face a fine.
  • Both give employers some responsibility for providing healthcare.
  • Both create a standard minimum package that plans must cover.
  • Both establish insurance exchanges for the uninsured.
  • Both prohibit insurance companies from cancelling coverage.
  • Both require plans to cover pre-existing conditions.

To be "dishonest," it seems that the two bills are similar on all major components. I understand the federal vs. state difference, and I agree that Massachusetts has the right to set up whatever type of healthcare system they desire. However, since I cannot seem to find a major difference between the two bills, I am left to assume that in Romney's opinion, the only thing making the Affordable Care Act "bad legislation" (his words, not mine) is that it was instituted by the federal government instead of a state.

Furthermore, given the recent revelation that Romney healthcare advisers also met with Obama, and the fact that Obama cited the Massachusetts law as being substantially similar, I find it hard to believe that someone could claim there is no possible way to connect the two bills. Finally, Romney's health care law was a signature achievement of his time as governor, as evidenced by the law's presence on his official portrait.

Chris Christie can call me "intellectually dishonest" if he wants, but I will not fall for word games. The Massachusetts law may be slightly better because it is a single state's solution, but that does not mean that Romney's state law is any better legislation than the federal law signed by the President. Bad legislation is bad legislation regardless of where it is passed; whether it is the Massachusetts legislature or the United States Congress.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Final Five: October 11, 2011

The Final Five: Bedtime Stories for Conservatives
October 11, 2011

Tonight's Crazy Story
Is running a marathon when 39 weeks pregnant a good idea? One woman ran the Chicago marathon, and then gave birth right afterward.

Tonight's Final Five:

In 2008, China embarked on a program of government spending on infrastructure projects. Now the bills are due and many local governments are finding themselves short. Kelvin Soh and Aileen Wang analyze what may happen next.

As dismal economic reports follow other dismal economic reports, one must wonder if we are experiencing a double-dip recession. Tim Iacono analzyes the future for the blog Seeking Alpha.

Taking a break...
To laugh a little
"It’s the 24th day of the Occupy Wall Street protests, also known as the largest homeless slumber party in the world."
-Jimmy Kimmel, 10/10/11

Now Back to The Final Five

Jonah Goldberg responds to a Washington Post article claiming that Obama is a policy genius for National Review Online.

Erica Werner argues at Real Clear Politics that Obama has two versions of reality: the one that's actually happening and the one that he tries to talk about.

Commentary Magazine's Steven Hayward explains why liberals are attempting to misappropriate Ronald Reagan for their own cause.

Tomorrow in History: October 12
October 12, 1999 - The world's population passes the six billion mark.

Food For Thought - A Bedtime Snack
"The great object is that every man be armed. Everyone who is able may have a gun."
-Patrick Henry

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Congressional Update: October 11, 2011

This update is taken from the e-mail newsletter of Congressman Geoff Davis (R-KY). If you would like to receive his e-mail updates, you may sign up here.

Last Week on the House Floor
Last week, the House was in session Monday through Thursday, during which the following bills passed the House:
  • H.R. 686, To require the conveyance of certain public land within the boundaries of Camp Williams, Utah
  • H.R. 765, To amend the National Forest Ski Area Permit Act of 1986
  • H.R. 670, To convey certain submerged lands to the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands
  • H.R. 2608, Small Business Program Extension and Reform Act of 2011
  • H.R. 2681, Cement Sector Regulatory Relief Act of 2011

Anticipated Action on the House Floor This Week
This week, the House will be in session Tuesday through Friday. The House is expected to vote on the following bills:
  • H.R. 2250, EPA Regulatory Relief Act of 2011
  • H.R. 3078, United States-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement Implementation Act
  • H.R. 3079, United States-Panama Trade Promotion Agreement Implementation Act
  • H.R. 3080, United States-Korea Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act
  • H.R. 2832, To extend the Generalized System of Preferences
  • H.R. 358, Protect Life Act
  • H.R. 2273, Coal Residuals Reuse and Management Act
  • H.R. 2433, Veterans Opportunity to Work Act of 2011
  • H.R. 2074, Veterans Sexual Assault Prevention Act
  • H.R. 2349, Veterans' Benefits Training Improvement Act of 2011
  • H.R. 1263, To amend the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act to provide surviving spouses with certain protections relating to mortgages and mortgage foreclosures
  • H.R. 1025, To amend title 38, United States Code, to recognize the service in the reserve components of certain persons by honoring them with status as veterans under law

You can read bills, summaries by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service and keep up-to-date on their progress as they move through the legislative process by visiting and typing in the bill number.

Monday, October 10, 2011

The Final Five: October 10, 2011

The Final Five: Bedtime Stories for Conservatives
October 10, 2011

Tonight's Crazy Story
If you steal someone's phone, there's some things you might not want to do with it. One of them is posting your photo on the victim's page.

Tonight's Final Five:

Health insurance premiums climbed more this year than any year since 2004. John Merline says on Investors Business Daily that we can consider it another one of ObamaCare's broken promises.

James Pethokoukis looks at the latest jobs report and says that minimal job creation without any reduction in unemployment seems to be the "new normal."

Taking a break...
To laugh a little
"There’s a proposal in Congress to allow rich people who feel they don’t pay enough income tax to voluntarily pay more. Economists say this could bring in as much as $75 a year."
-Jay Leno, 10/7/11

Now Back to The Final Five

Given the hype surrounding Barack Obama when he was inaugurated, the Obama Presidency now seems to be a dismal failure. Noemie Emery argues at The Weekly Standard that "Prince Obama" has turned out to be a frog.

While the 9-9-9 plan from Herman Cain has some very good ideas for tax reform, does America really need to create a new tax? Dean Clancy argues at FreedomWorks that the 9-9-9 plan is a combination of good, bad, and ugly.

Forbes's Howard Gleckman gives five reasons why the "Buffett Rule" makes for great politics, but awful policy.

Tomorrow in History: October 8
October 8, 1975 - NBC debutes a new comedy show titled Saturday Night Live, featuring George Carlin, Andy Kaufman, Janis Ian and Billy Preston.

Food For Thought - A Bedtime Snack
"Americans [have] the right and advantage of being armed, unlike the citizens of other countries whose governments are afraid to trust their people with arms."
-Samuel Adams

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A Study in Unemployment Rates

A successful stimulus package would keep unemployment at about the expected rate. An extremely successful stimulus package would keep unemployment below the expected rate. An unsuccessful stimulus package would result in unemployment above the expected rate. What do you call a stimulus package that keeps unemployment above the rate predicted if nothing was done?