Friday, June 8, 2012

The Final Five: June 8, 2012



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Tonight's Crazy Story:
Live Fish Surgically Removed From Indian Boy's Lung
Students at all 23 High Schools in Maryland's Prince George County will receive a new diploma after the ones they received stated that they had completed their "progam" of study.


Topic One: The Day of Silence
Today, several blogs are observing a "day of silence" to protest the jailing of Aaron Walker. A Maryland court imposed a restraining order on Walker for writing about convicted bomber from Speedway, Indiana, Brett Kimberlin. This order went against existing legal precedent and is a definite judicial affront to the first amendment. When Walker continued to blog about Kimberlin, the judge ordered Walker jailed for violating the restraining order.

Ace of Spades proposed the protest:
For now, I'm just going to write this, to let people know my plan.

On Friday, this site will be absolutely dead-silent, which is what Brett Kimberlin and his stalker crew seeks, and what the media and our supposed Representatives in Congress would permit.

The only post on Friday will be a bold-faced Open Letter to Congress, urging them to act and not attempt to pass the buck to others.

They are our representatives; we would like some representation.

They vowed to defend and protect the Constitution; they can honor that vow now.

I will post links of Congressmen's and Senator's email addresses and offices and phone numbers, and urge every concerned American citizen to let them know, in no uncertain terms, that a crime in progress against the First Amendment (and people's safety) is occurring, and we humbly request they take this seriously.


While I did not participate today, I still ask you to write your Senator and Representative and urge them to defend the first amendment.


Time for a Laugh:
"A new study claims that coffee drinkers live longer than people who don't drink coffee. Of course, they spend so much time waiting in line at Starbucks that it evens out."
-Conan O'Brien


Topic Two: Excessive Spending
Three examples of excessive government spending have come across the newswires recently:

Food stamp spending doubling this year: "The vast majority of federal spending in the Senate farm bill, which is estimated to cost over $100 billion annually, is going toward food stamps, representing a 100 percent increase since President Barack Obama took office, according to Alabama Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions. “This legislation will spend $82 billion on food stamps next year, and an estimated $770 billion over the next ten years. To put these figures in perspective, we will spend $40 billion federal dollars next year on roads and bridges,” said Sessions, the ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee. “Food stamp spending has more than quadrupled since the year 2001. It has increased 100 percent since President Obama took office,” he said."

NASA project scrapped due to cost: "NASA is shuttering the Gravity and Extreme Magnetism Small Explore (GEMS) project, which was going to use X-rays to study black holes and space-time theory, the space agency announced Thursday -- but not before costing taxpayers at least $43.5 million. GEMS was supposed to cost no more than $119 million, not counting the rocket that would launch it into orbit. But NASA has already spent tens of millions, according to June 5 briefing charts obtained by SpaceNews.com, and an independent evaluation pegged the project at 20 to 30 percent overbudget."

Federal government has nearly $70 billion in unspent cash: "The federal government has at least $70 billion that has languished for years in unspent accounts, never reaching the states, localities, businesses and taxpayers the money was designed to help, according to a new report by Sen. Tom Coburn. Mr. Coburn, the Senate's chief waste-watcher, said in many cases politicians and bureaucrats ignored money already in the pipeline and went out to try to corral more funding instead. This year alone the government will carry more than $2 trillion in unspent money into 2013, and while much of that money is obligated to specific expenditures in future years, Mr. Coburn said about a third has not been, "meaning it is essentially money for nothing."

I am not doubting that these projects may have had a legitimate purpose, but each also represents a problem with government spending. If we are truly in a "recovery", why are so many additional people in need of food stamps? If the GEMS project was such a necessary project that we needed to spend it right away, why are we cancelling it so quickly? And if we have $70 billion sitting around in unused allocations, wouldn't it be a better idea to use that to pay down a small fraction of our debt?


Debt Watch:
$15,733,369,432,140.84
( As of Thursday, June 7, 2012 )

Change: -$1,227,146,318
Your share as a citizen: $50,316.49
Share per household: $137,726.90
Debt since Obama inauguration: $5,106,492,383,228


Topic Three: Learning from History
Five lessons America can learn from other nations' failures: "As Ronald Reagan noted, 'Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.'

"That's true of freedom, but it's also true of values, wealth, power, and influence. There's absolutely no guarantee that future generations of Americans will grow up in a prosperous, free super power as we have. In fact, it's entirely possible that America could be a terrible place to live a few decades from now. Of course, that doesn't have to be our future either. If we are smart enough to learn from other nations’ mistakes, we can avoid their fates."


Tweet of the Day:
@RBPundit: Obama is spending so much time at $40K per plate fundraisers, he thinks the rest of the private sector is "doing fine." #outoftouch #tcot


Topic Four: The Regulatory Effect
John Stossel argues that uncertainty in regulation is paralyzing business: "Let's remember that the economy -- which is to say, us -- is already burdened by byzantine bureaucratic impositions. Every week, the feds add another thousand pages of rules and proposals for rules. Local governments add their own. My mayor, in New York City, even proposes micromanaging the size of the drinks restaurants may sell."

"On top of the existing mountain of red tape, the Obama administration has piled on more, with more to come. Obamacare was less a specific prescription than a license for the Department of Health and Human Services to write new rules, lots of which are yet to be written. No one knows how the bureaucrats will micromanage health insurance."

"Then there's Dodd-Frank, the 2,300-page revamp of finance industry regulation. Again, the bill left the rule-writing to regulatory agencies. Who knows what they will come up with?"

"Every year, Congress makes thousands of changes to tax laws. And no one can guess what will happen in 2013 if the 2001 and 2003 rate cuts expire."


Food for Thought - A Quote from our Founders
"Democracies have been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their death."

-James Madison


Topic Five: Remembering Ray Bradbury
The effects of Bradbury's masterpiece: "Fahrenheit 451 focuses on a single, salient aspect of human life: the written word. Bradbury's dystopia is fantastically simple. Firemen exist to burn books: the final immolation of all the collected writings of men will liberate us from our past and from the long heritage of civilization. Mass communication and particularly mass amusement have replaced the solitary acts of reading and of writing. What Bradbury saw, of course, is the world we live in today, and what he was defending was, in the purest sense of the word, conservatism. It is a fact of modern history that conservatism is inextricably connected with the written word. The Torah and the Christian Bible, preserved so deliberately by believers over many centuries, are touchstones to conservatism. Documents like our Declaration of Independence and the Constitution prescribe the purposes and limits of government and void the ambitions of power-hungry leftists."

Bradbury's turn toward conservatism: "What isn’t widely known, as reported in Breitbart News, Bradbury, once an admitted liberal, had become a “rock-ribbed conservative who embraced the Tea Party movement in recent years.” Bradbury is best known for Fahrenheit 451 — the temperature at which paper burns — a chilling tale of government‑suppressed speech through book burning. The fireman’s “job is to burn books, all of which have been banned as unsafe to the state and disturbing to the tranquility of its population.”[1] Bradbury’s futuristic yarn has consistently been used by the Left as a warning of what might happen if the Right ever gained political power. There are book burners on the Left (e.g., Nazis and Communists) and book burners on the Right. Paper burns at the same temperature for ideologues on either end of the political spectrum."

I planned to write my own comments here, but as I began writing, I realized that the limited space here would not permit me to share all of the thoughts that I have. I will post it on the blog this weekend, and will providehttp://godfatherpolitics.com/5559/you-wont-believe-how-obama-and-co-are-spinning-the-wisconsin-recall-election/ the link in Monday's Final Five.


Tomorrow in History
June 9, 1732 - King George II issues a charter granting James Oglethorpe the right to found the colony of Georgia.


Grab Bag - Interesting and Important Stories to Conclude Your Evening:
Boehner gives Pelosi a hug

'I couldn't get a disease named after me so I settled for a tax'

Holder in the hot seat over Fast & Furious

Reid to try to change the filibuster next year if Dems hold Senate

The post-Wisconsin spin

School questions city's water double-billing; gets charged higher fees

Was the internet invented in 1934?



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D.C. Daily: June 8, 2012

Senate
Yesterday's Action:
During business yesterday, the Senate took the following actions:
  • Passed S. 3261, to allow the Chief of the Forest Service to award certain contracts for large air tankers.
  • Passed H.R. 5883, to make a technical correction in Public Law 112-108.
  • Passed H.R. 5890, to correct a technical error in Public Law 112-122.
  • Passed S. Res. 476, honoring the contributions of the late Fang Lizhi to the people of China and the cause of freedom.
  • Passed S. Res. 488, commending the efforts of the firefighters and emergency response personnel of Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut, who came together to extinguish the May 23, 2012, fire at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery, Maine.
  • Agreed to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to consideration of S. 3240, the "Agriculture Reform, Food, and Jobs Act of 2012", by a vote of 90 yeas to 8 nays.
  • Began consideration of the nomination of Andrew David Hurwitz to be Circuit Judge for the Ninth Circuit. A motion to invoke cloture was entered, and a vote on cloture will occur on Monday, June 11.

Today's Schedule:
The Senate will not meet today. The next meeting of the Senate is scheduled for 2:00 PM on Monday, June 11.


House
Yesterday's Action:
During business yesterday, the House took the following actions:
  • Passed H.R. 436, the "Health Care Cost Reduction Act of 2012", by a vote of 270 yeas to 146 nays.
  • Passed H.R. 5855, the "Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2013", by a vote of 234 yeas to 182 nays.

Today's Schedule:
The House will meet today at 9:00 AM. The House is expected to begin consideration of H.R. 5882, the "Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, 2013".


Executive Agencies
Significant Proposed Rules:
There were no significant rules proposed today.

Significant Final Rules:
  • Federal Housing Finance Agency: establishing prudential standards (Standards) relating to the management and operations of the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae), Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac), and Federal Home Loan Banks (Banks) (collectively, regulated entities). (Effective 8/7/12)
  • Coast Guard: correcting six technical errors inadvertently published in a final rule on March 23, 2012. (Effective 6/21/12)
  • Federal Maritime Commission: revising the regulations which govern negotiated rate arrangements. (Effective 9/10/12, unless adverse comment is received by 8/10/12)

Presidential Documents:
  • Presidential Memorandum: delegating to the Secretary of State the reporting functions conferred upon the President by section 8 of the Belarus Democracy Act of 2004.
  • Presidential Determination No. 2012-07: certifying that it is important to the national security interests of the United States to waive the provisions of section 7040(a) of the Act, in order to provide funds appropriated to carry out Chapter 4 of Part II of the Foreign Assistance Act, as amended, to the Palestinian Authority.


Supreme Court
The court has concluded scheduled oral arguments for the October 2011 term. However, the court is still meeting to finalize decisions on cases it heard during the preceeding term. The court's next session of oral arguments is scheduled to begin on Monday, October 1, 2012.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Final Five: June 7, 2012



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Tonight's Crazy Story:
Live Fish Surgically Removed From Indian Boy's Lung
A boy was playing a game involving swallowing a fish had it go "down the wrong pipe" and into his lungs. Doctors reported that the fish was still alive when they performed the surgery to remove it.


Topic One: ObamaCare
RomneyCare gone bad: "Key stakeholders aren’t sure whether the springtime rush to craft a state approach to health care costs will create a national model — much the way Massachusetts’s 2006 coverage expansion signed by Gov. Mitt Romney helped create a framework for President Barack Obama’s 2010 national health law. In fact, some are wondering whether the cost-savings effort will even work in Massachusetts. “That remains to be seen. Hopefully, the final product is reasonable and we can all adjust,” said Richard Aghababian, president of the Massachusetts Medical Society."

Another broken ObamaCare promise? Exchanges might not spur competition: "Exchanges are similar to the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP), which allows federal workers to choose from a range of health plans. Plans can only participate if they meet certain minimum standards. But some areas of the country don't have many competing FEHBP plans, so workers in those areas don't reap the same benefits from competition among insurers, according to a study published in Health Affairs. The same thing could happen with exchanges unless states and the federal government take proactive steps to avoid it, the study says.Rural areas with low populations tend to have less competition among insurance companies. They have fewer doctors and other healthcare providers, and are often dominated by one large insurer — in the case of the FEHBP, usually Blue Cross/Blue Shield."

HHS missing ObamaCare deadlines: "The Health and Human Services Department has missed nearly half of its legal deadlines while implementing President Obama’s healthcare law, according to an analysis by the American Action Forum. HHS has faced 42 statutory deadlines in the roughly two years since the Affordable Care Act became law — and it missed 20 of them, according to the AAF’s count."


Time for a Laugh:
"Governor Scott Walker won his recall last night in Wisconsin. Who would have guessed the governor of Wisconsin would have been a better closer than LeBron James?"
-Jay Leno


Topic Two: Defining "Green"
Darrell Issa asks how the administration defines a green job: "The Obama administration on Wednesday acknowledged a wide-ranging definition of “green jobs” that includes bus driver, bicycle-shop clerk and other unexpected lines of employment, which the chairman of the GOP-led House oversight committee said is being done for “clearly political purposes.” ... Issa suggested the administration is reclassifying such jobs to prove that billions of taxpayer dollars, through the federal stimulus program, have created green, or environmentally-focused jobs – a major initiative for President Obama."

HotAir analysis: "Four years ago, Obama promised more than once that he’d create five million “green jobs” over the next decade. Thanks to the magic of reclassification, sounds like he might already have gotten there. And the punchline is, this is all basically useless for him politically: No one outside the furthest reaches of the left will care inside the voting booth what O’s “green jobs” record is so long as baseline economic numbers are as grisly as they are now. And since Congress is almost guaranteed to be redder next year, Obama will have even less leeway on his crony-capitalist “green loans” program even if he ends up getting reelected. Still, if this nonsense ensures a steady supply of videos as entertaining as this, I guess it’s not wholly useless. Bring on the “green” oil lobbyists."


Debt Watch:
$15,734,596,578,458.59
( As of Wednesday, June 6, 2012 )

Change: +$1,187,295,259
Your share as a citizen: $50,320.42
Share per household: $137,737.64
Debt since Obama inauguration: $5,107,719,529,546


Topic Three: The Debt
CBO gives two scenarios: "The first assumes laws currently in place rule the day. That means lawmakers do nothing to lessen the effects of the so-called fiscal cliff and allow $7 trillion in tax hikes and spending cuts start to take effect in January. Under that scenario over the long run, debt falls to 53% of the size of the economy by 2037 from more than 70% today. Tax revenue would rise to 24% of GDP in 25 years and keep growing. That would be well above the 18.3% historical average."

"Then there's the second scenario analyzed by CBO -- the one many consider to be a more realistic outlook. In that scenario, Congress largely leaves many of today's policies in place. Among them: The Bush tax cuts. Protection for the middle class against the Alternative Minimum Tax. A rollback of scheduled payment cuts for Medicare doctors. The agency also assumes lawmakers cancel the nearly $1 trillion in spending cuts set to take effect next year. So what happens? First, spending on health care entitlements would be slightly higher, accounting for 10.4% of GDP. Debt would be pushed to more than 90% of GDP by 2022, cross its historical high of 109% by 2026 and continue rising to nearly 200% by 2037. And that doesn't account for any negative effects that such high debt might have on the economy."


Is Obama our spending czar? "Where were we? Oh yes; the “Spending Czar in Chief” claiming that he’s tightfisted with taxpayer dollars. Hilarious. To you and me. To Democrats, it’s cringe-inducing. They can’t believe the President would actually go on stage and deliver such hilarious material with a straight face. That’s why, instead of fanning out on the talk shows to amplify the President’s comedy routine, many once-sympathetic pundits and columnists are now covering their eyes, shaking their heads, and hoping for something to pop up in the news cycle to yank the President off stage, and off his ridiculous message track."


Tweet of the Day:
Gabriella Hoffman (@Gabby_Hoffman): Admonishing personal wealth is acceptable to Democrats, yet they're so keen about spreading the wealth but keeping their own $. #hypocrites


Topic Four: Medicare Fraud
The problems of government-run healthcare: "Barely a day goes by without a major news story highlighting some new Medicare or Medicaid scam that has bilked the government — that is, taxpayers — out of millions of dollars. Though most of the reports involve only a few people and scamming under $10 million, that’s chump change when compared to some of the bigger busts."

"For example, federal authorities announced on May 2 they had arrested 107 health care providers, including doctors and nurses, in several cities and charged them with cheating Medicare out of $452 million. To put this in perspective, the collapse of the solar company Solyndra, which had taken $535 million in taxpayer dollars from the Obama administration, has been a recurring topic in the media and public debates. The Medicare fraud arrest mentioned above was a news story for only a day or two."


Food for Thought - A Quote from our Founders
"I consider trial by jury as the only anchor yet imagined by man by which a government can be held to the priciples of its Constitution."

-Thomas Jefferson


Topic Five: Voter ID
A discussion on why the left opposes ID laws: "Thus, the Left’s main reason for opposing voter ID laws is an exaggeration. Obtaining a photo ID is not an undue burden and is actually not something out of reach for those Americans interested in voting. Since voting generally takes place every two years, there is adequate time to obtain a photo ID before it is needed at a polling place. And, if those on the Left are concerned that some have a difficult time obtaining photo IDs, they should help them gather the necessary documentation and help them obtain the ID, just as they assist people in other areas of need."

"So what’s the real reason behind the Left’s opposition to voter ID laws? Undermining America’s electoral process is something those on the Left know how to do since it advances their agenda. They do not want laws to prevent this activity. Breaking a law has consequences."

"For instance, ACORN (a well-known national organization whose efforts primarily benefited Democrats) was convicted last year of voter fraud in Nevada. Two years ago ACORN settled a lawsuit in Ohio, where ACORN had been sued for engaging in a widespread pattern of corruption by submitting false voter registrations. As part of the settlement, ACORN agreed to give up its business licenses in Ohio and cease all activity in that State. Because of its various scandals, ACORN has disbanded nationwide."


Tomorrow in History
June 8, 1789 - Twelve proposed amendments to the United States Constitution are introduced in the House of Representatives. The ten that would be ratified by the states would eventually become known as the Bill of Rights.


Grab Bag - Interesting and Important Stories to Conclude Your Evening:
Obama's biggest gaffes

Judge Andrew Napolitano: Where is the outrage on domestic drones?

Boy sends running back $3.38 to go back to NY Giants

Current TV host says national anthem is stupid and embarassing

Reporters forced to use government equipment to write about jobs numbers

Polls oversample Democrats

One in five drop friends over political Facebook posts

Pro-choice on abortion; no choice on soda

Ten jobs that will make you fat

Hitler's reaction to the Walker recall victory



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D.C. Daily: June 7, 2012

Senate
Yesterday's Action:
During business yesterday, the Senate took the following actions:
  • Passed S. Res. 484, designating June 7, 2012, as "National Hunger Awareness Day".
  • Passed S. Res. 485, to authorize representation by the Senate Legal Counsel in the case of Common Cause, et al. v. Joseph R. Biden, et al.
  • Continued consideration of the motion to proceed to consideration of S. 3420, the "Agriculture Reform, Food, and Jobs Act".
  • Confirmed the nomination of Jeffrey J. Helmick to be District Judge for the Northern District of Ohio, by a vote of 62 yeas to 36 nays.

Today's Schedule:
The Senate will meet at 9:30 AM today. The Senate will resume consideration of the motion to proceed to consideration of S. 3420, the "Agriculture Reform, Food, and Jobs Act". A vote on the motion to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to consideration will occur at approximately 10:30 AM.


House
Yesterday's Action:
During business yesterday, the House took the following actions:
  • Passed H.R. 5325, the "Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2013", by a vote of 255 yeas to 165 nays.
  • Began consideration of H.R. 5855, the "Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2013".
  • Suspended the rules and passed S. 292, the "Salmon Lake Land Selection Resolution Act".
  • Suspended the rules and passed S. 363, to authorize the Secretary of Commerce to convey property of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to the City of Pascagoula, Mississippi, and for other purposes.

Today's Schedule:
The House will meet today at 10:00 AM. The House is expected to resume consideration of H.R. 5855, the "Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2013".



Executive Agencies
Significant Proposed Rules:
There were no significant rules proposed today.

Significant Final Rules:
  • Environmental Protection Agency: finalizing revisions to our rules pertaining to the regional haze program. (Effective 8/6/12)
  • Coast Guard: amending the current regulations for fire suppression systems on several classes of commercial vessels. (Effective 7/9/12)

Presidential Documents:


Supreme Court
The court has concluded scheduled oral arguments for the October 2011 term. However, the court is still meeting to finalize decisions on cases it heard during the preceeding term. The court's next session of oral arguments is scheduled to begin on Monday, October 1, 2012.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

The Final Five: June 6, 2012



Tonight, a special "Wisconsin Victory" edition.


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Tonight's Crazy Story:
Report: 119% Voter Turnout in Madison, WI
A Madison election clerk told a radio host that Madison was expecting 119% voter turnout. While this could be due to same-day voter registration; it does not help defeat the impression of voting fraud.


Topic One: The Union Impact
The Walker victory spells doom for public unions: "Despite a last-minute smear campaign accusing Scott Walker of fathering an illegitimate love child, the governor’s recall election victory sends a clear message that should resonate around the nation: The fiscal cancer devouring state budgets has a cure, and he has found it. The costly defeat for the entrenched union interests that tried to oust Walker in retribution for challenging their power was marked by President Obama’s refusal to lend his weight to the campaign for fear of being stained by defeat. We’ll see how well this strategy of opportunistic detachment serves in the fall as Obama reaches out to unions for support." HotAir's Ed Morrissey adds: "It turns out that the majority of Wisconsin voters don’t sympathize much with the plight of poor, downtrodden … government workers."

However, Wisconsin was not the only state with union issues on the ballot. Voters in San Jose and San Diego approved changing the cities' pension systems into 401(k) systems. Thomas Lifson explains: "Voters in San Diego and San Jose, the 8th and tenth biggest municipalities in the United States, decisively voted to redistribute income from the rich (public employees) to the middle class taxpayers who earn far less on average. Both cities have strong Democratic registration majorities, indicating that the general public has fully absorbed the lesson that government jobs are wildly overpaid, and that it is necessary to choose between using money to serve the taxpayers, or using it to benefit the bureaucrats." Mike Flynn at Breitbart says this is only the start: Voters in San Diego and San Jose overwhelmingly approved significant cuts to their city workers' pension benefits. Its the start of a wave the unions will be unable to stop.

The unions responded that they believe these measures will be defeated in the courts: "Yolanda Cruz, president of the Municipal Employees’ Federation, the city’s largest union, said that the passage was “an unfortunate way to spend taxpayer money fighting it in court because we will definitely take it there. Taxpayer money would be better used getting services back.” Unions may know a lot about the unfortunate spending of taxpayer money, but though all these initiatives will end up in courtrooms — so much for “Power to the People!” — the mood of voters is unmistakable."


Time for a Laugh:
"Presidential primaries were held in California, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, and South Dakota today. Both candidates for president — Obama and Romney — have already clinched their nominations. So today's primaries were mostly for people who really like stickers."
-Jimmy Kimmel


Topic Two: The Obama Impact
Red flags for Obama: "President Obama wasn't on the ballot in Wisconsin, but Gov. Scott Walker's decisive victory in last night's gubernatorial recall is a stinging blow to his prospects for a second term. The re-election was a telltale sign that the conservative base is as energized as ever, that the Democratic GOTV efforts may not be as stellar as advertised, and that the Democratic-leaning "blue wall" Rust Belt states of Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania will be very much in play this November. Walker won by a bigger margin than he did in 2010, and with more overall votes. He carried 38 percent of union households - a slight improvement from his 2010 midterm tally -- a strikingly strong number given how he's been cast as the villain of labor. It's a sign of the cultural divide between national Democrats and blue-collar whites, one that is particularly acute for the president."

The ground game impact: "Last night’s exit polls still showed Obama with a double-digit lead. But they also showed Walker and his opponent Tom Barrett in a dead-heat, when Walker actually won the race by seven points — raising doubts about the accuracy of the exit polling. Republicans may also have the ground game on their side. The Democratic Party relies heavily on unions to organize on the ground, but if Big Labor couldn’t get out the vote for Barrett against Walker — public enemy #1 for unions — they’ll likely also have trouble rallying support for Obama, whose relationship with the unions has been shaky at times."

Will Walker be the Romney's Margaret Thatcher? "Some elections are precursor elections. When Margaret Thatcher won in May of '79 and then stood tall against the British trade unions, no one knew then that she was not merely a strong leader, but also the first wave of generational reform and resolve. Ronald Reagan followed her victory with another 18 months later, and still people didn't understand the enormous change that had taken place. That revolution wouldn't be fully understood until the Soviet Union fell apart in 1989. The huge GOP win in 2010 was a major event, but Scott Walker's triumph yesterday was very much like Thatcher's win --a foreshadowing of a huge shift that will be completed in its electoral consequences when Mitt Romney wins in November. It is a "foreshock" in earthquake terms, and the size of Walker's margin of triumph is so large that the commentariat is still absorbing it this morning."


Debt Watch:
$15,733,409,283,200.18
( As of Tuesday, June 5, 2012 )

Change: +$5,296,880,340
Your share as a citizen: $50,316.62
Share per household: $137,727.25
Debt since Obama inauguration: $5,106,532,234,287


Topic Three: The Exit Polls
As the polls closed at 9:00 PM ET, the media reported the race as too close to call. However, as results began to trickle in, they quickly realized that the exit polls predicting a close race were wrong and called the race for Walker and Kleefisch only 51 minutes later. What happened? "On Tuesday, as in the other instances, the fault is less about the exit polls themselves, than it is about a widespread, albeit understandable misrepresentation of the numbers. The exit poll is, after all, a poll, complete with a margin of sampling error and other foibles. One issue with the exit polling for the recall election was that there was no telephone survey of absentee voters. NBC News estimates at least 15 percent of all voters voted that way, and that they favored Walker over Barrett. The first exit poll numbers to include estimates of the vote breakdowns for absentee voters was the release a half-hour after poll-close, perhaps accounting for the shift from 50-50 to 52-48. Another, easily forgotten aspect of early numbers is that they are preliminary."

Another item being discussed is the exit poll's support for Obama, showing him with a 51-44 lead over Romney. However, with the poll results pointing to a statistical tie between Walker and Barrett, can we trust the Obama/Romney numbers? Breitbart's John Nolte says: "Yes, the media is still quoting exit polls that couldn't even get the main event correct. The results between Walker and Barrett aren't 50/50. It wasn't even close. Walker trounced Barrett by an even wider margin than when they squared off in 2010: Seven points instead of six." Even if the six-point spread for the Obama/Romney race was correct, it is still less than half of Obama's 2008 victory margin. While the Obama camp may be trying to spin this as good news, I am sure that, internally, they are concerned about this result.


Tweet of the Day:
@AceofSpadesHQ: One could tune to either CNN and Fox and get both rightist and leftist analysis. MSNBC stood proudly alone in not even attempting a pretense


Topic Four: Walker's Vindication
Walker's victory is courage rewarded: "In the face of an angry and violent union movement and hostile media, Scott Walker chose to attempt a fundamental reform of his state’s budget woes. He was told he couldn’t get away with it, and for a time it appeared as if his critics would make him pay for his resolve with his job. But by not merely surviving the recall, but winning big, Walker demonstrated that it is actually possible for a conservative Republican to not only win an election by promising change but to successfully deliver it. ... After his recall victory, never again will union thugs storm a state capitol, as happened last year in Madison, secure in the belief that they had the muscle to intimidate a governor and a legislature with a fresh mandate for change from the people. Never again will liberals assume that the status quo they defend with such fervor is unassailable. The reforms Walker advocated and then passed have been shown to be more than theoretical ideas aired at symposiums at conservative think tanks. His recall victory shows that rather than being an example of how extremists always fail, he may well prove to be the first of a wave of reform-minded conservatives to successfully defeat the unions."

Walker didn't hide from fiscal reality: "But beyond the issue of whether Scott Walker's survival puts Wisconsin in play in November, his victory represents an example of the way politicians in our most pressed states are sorting themselves as they confront this long fiscal downturn. Increasingly they fall into two camps: those willing to undertake tough reforms in the face of severe fiscal restraints that don't appear likely to improve anytime soon, and those who continue to put off the difficult decisions even as their states' balance sheets deteriorate and investors grow wary of their budget instability. Just a few days before the Wisconsin vote, for instance, neighboring Illinois' legislators fled Springfield without passing pension reform despite enormous pressure on them to end the bleeding in the state's budget caused in part by growing retirement costs. Even a coalition of Illinois municipal officials led by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel couldn't persuade the legislators to pass a bill reducing the costs of the pension system. Lawmakers openly admitted that they feared for their jobs in November if they voted for reform in May."


Food for Thought - A Quote from our Founders
"Let us therefore animate and encourage each other, and show the world that a free man, contending for his liberty on his own ground, is superior to any slavish mercenary on earth."

-George Washington


Topic Five: The Response
One woman was apparently not happy that Barrett conceded the race before all the votes were counted. She slapped Barrett on the face as he walked by. But Walker's sweeping victory is shown in this county-by-county map. Walker won 60 of the state's 72 counties. I think the best line from the night was this statement from Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch: "Now this is what democracy looks like!" Finally, Democrats kept it classy on Twitter, threatening to kill Scott Walker.


Tomorrow in History
June 7, 1892 - Benjamin Harrison becomes the first President in American history to attend a baseball game.


In Conclusion:
Erick Erickson offers these seven conclusions from last night's results:

  • "The first thing we can conclude is that defense of public sector unions is now a non-starter even in the birthplace of American progressive politics."
  • "The second thing we can conclude is that the same winning coalition of disaffected independent voters, tea party activists, and Republicans held together in Wisconsin to keep Scott Walker."
  • "The third thing we can conclude from Wisconsin is that the Republican Party’s use of technology in its GOTV efforts really paid off."
  • "The fourth thing we can conclude from Wisconsin is that Barack Obama is extremely nervous."
  • "The fifth thing we can conclude is that exit polling does not work well for recall elections."
  • "The sixth thing we can conclude from Wisconsin is that Barack Obama is still the favorite there, but, while I hate to be repetitive, the Democrats’ continued recall efforts have made the state much more competitive for the GOP in that state."
  • "The seventh thing we can conclude from Wisconsin is that MSNBC is consistently the most entertaining news network in America when things go badly for the left."



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D.C. Daily: June 6, 2012

Senate
Yesterday's Action:
Yesterday, the Senate took the following actions:
  • Passed S. 2061, the "Former Charleston Naval Base Land Exchange Act".
  • Passed S. Res. 477, calling for the safe and immediate return of Noor and Ramsay Bower to the United States.
  • Passed S. Res. 478, commemorating the 200th anniversary of the chartering of Hamilton College in Clinton, New York.
  • Passed S. Res. 479, commemorating the dedication of the Strategic Air Command Memorial during the 20th anniversary of its stand down.
  • Passed S. Res. 480, commemorating the 20th anniversary of United States Strategic Command.
  • Passed S. Res. 481, celebrating the 60th Anniversary of the United States-Philippines Mutual Defense Treaty and the vitality of the overall bilateral relationship.
  • Passed S. Con. Res. 45, authorizing the use of Emancipation Hall in the Capitol Visitor Center for an event to award the Congressional Gold Medal, collectively, to the Montford Point Marines.
  • Rejected the motion to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to consideration of S. 3220, the "Paycheck Fairness Act", by a vote of 52 yeas to 47 nays (three-fifths support required). The motion to proceed to consideration was subsequently withdrawn.
  • Began consideration of the motion to proceed to consideration of S. 3420, the "Agriculture Reform, Food, and Jobs Act". A motion to invoke cloture was entered, and a vote on cloture will occur on Thursday, June 7, 2012.

Today's Schedule:
The Senate will meet at 9:30 AM today. The Senate will resume consideration of the motion to proceed to consideration of S. 3420, the "Agriculture Reform, Food, and Jobs Act".


House
Yesterday's Action:
During business yesterday, the House took the following actions:
  • Continued consideration of H.R. 5325, the "Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2013".
  • Suspended the rules and passed H.R. 2060, the "Central Oregon Jobs and Water Security Act".
  • Suspended the rules and passed H.R. 2512, the "Three Kids Mine Remediation and Reclamation Act".
  • Suspended the rules and passed H.R. 3263, the "Lake Thunderbird Efficient Use Act of 2011".
  • Suspended the rules and passed H.R. 241, to authorize the conveyance of certain National Forest System lands in the Los Padres National Forest in California.
  • Suspended the rules and passed H.R. 1740, to amend the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act to designate a segment of Illabot Creek in Skagit County, Washington, as a component of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System.
  • Suspended the rules and passed H.R. 2336, the "York River Wild and Scenic River Study Act of 2011".
  • Suspended the rules and passed H.R. 4222, the "Pascua Yaqui Tribe Trust Land Act".
  • Suspended the rules and passed H.R. 4282, the "International Child Support Recovery Improvement Act of 2012".
  • Considered S. 292, the "Salmon Lake Land Selection Resolution Act".
  • Considered S. 363, to authorize the Secretary of Commerce to convey property of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to the City of Pascagoula, Mississippi, and for other purposes.
  • Passed H.R. 5890, to correct a technical error in Public Law 112-122.
  • Passed H.R. 5883, to make a technical correction in Public Law 112-108.

Today's Schedule:
The House will meet today at 10:00 AM. The House is expected to resume consideration of H.R. 5325, the "Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2013".


Executive Agencies
Because yesterday's Federal Register was not available at the time of publication, today's edition contains significant actions from yesterday and today. Significant Proposed Rules:
  • Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: reopening the comment period for the proposed rule amending Regulation Z (Truth in Lending) to implement amendments to the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) made by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. (Comment period closes 7/9/12)

Significant Final Rules:
  • State Department: announcing the treaty between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland Concerning Defense Trade Cooperation into force. (Effective 4/13/12)
  • Environmental Protection Agency: listing carbon dioxide (CO 2) or R-744, as acceptable substitute, subject to use conditions, in the motor vehicle air conditioning (MVAC) end-use for motor vehicles. (Effective 8/6/12)


Supreme Court
The court has concluded scheduled oral arguments for the October 2011 term. However, the court is still meeting to finalize decisions on cases it heard during the preceeding term. The court's next session of oral arguments is scheduled to begin on Monday, October 1, 2012.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

The Final Five: June 5, 2012



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Tonight's Crazy Story:
Trapped Bank Robber Cut From Air Duct, Police Say
A man broke into a Chicago bank vault and made off with $100,000, but he then got stuck in an air duct as he tried to escape.


Topic One: Wisconsin Recall
Wisconsin recall could impact November: " President Obama holds multiple paths to re-election, with a handful of battleground states being able to slip away without leading to his defeat. But each possible outcome on his campaign map has always shared a common trait: winning Wisconsin. A Republican resurgence here, which has burst into full view as the party determinedly defends its sitting governor in a rare recall election, is spilling into the presidential race. The result is poised to shape the general election fight between Mr. Obama and Mitt Romney, who intends to add Wisconsin to his list of targeted states."

Another article detailing how Wisconsin reforms are working: "Wisconsin struts onto the stage Tuesday in the drama known as the crisis of the entitlement state in the Western world. The state’s recall election of Gov. Scott Walker upstages, however briefly, the story line of Illinois trying to come to grips with its unfunded $83 billion liability in government employee pensions, the comedy of Gov. Jerry Brown pursuing an extravagantly expensive high-speed train to nowhere as California sinks under a $16 billion budget deficit, and the starring role of Greece in the wrenching euro zone tragedy. Passions typical of a Greek tragedy are driving polarized voters to the polls in Wisconsin to determine Walker’s fate. He is, according to your world view, a heroic figure who has tamed the avaricious public sector unions leeching off the taxpayer or a villain spearheading an assault on workers, their rights and their unions."

And don't worry about fraud in today's recall, the DOJ is going to be monitoring the election.


Time for a Laugh:
"On Friday, President Obama spent the night at his home in Chicago for the first time in over a year. It was nice — he even went down to the basement and dusted off some old campaign promises."
-Jimmy Fallon


Topic Two: Obama's Legacy
Obama's pathetic legacy: "What I want to focus on here is how pathetic it is that Obama is now reduced to posing as a fiscal conservative. Did Obama run in 2008 on a platform of restraining federal spending? Of course not. He represents the left wing of the Democratic Party, whose main object>ive is increased federal spending. To the extent that he has influenced legislation, has it ever had the purpose of limiting federal spending? Don’t be ridiculous! His signature legislative “achievements,” the stimulus and Obamacare, entailed billions of dollars in new federal appropriations. Has he ever even proposed to limit spending in any meaningful way? No. On the contrary, his budgets have been so flamboyantly profligate that in the last two years, not a single Senator or Congressman has been willing to vote for them. Obama has never been, or tried to be, anything but a far-left spendthrift. So the fact that he now is reduced to posing as a green-eyeshade cost-cutter is simply pathetic."

The do-nothing President: "Not only does the Obama team not have, as it has never had, a plan to deal with the Great Recession; it also has no motivation to take action now in the face of economic stoppage. As the economy sinks into the 1%-growth range, if not recession, we’ve got a do-nothing president. In an election year. Pretty weird stuff. Now, Obama is trying to cast things the other way. He says we’ve got a do-nothing Congress. He has what he calls a “jobs bill” which has been on offer since last fall. On its face it’s a collection of half-measures and penny-ante Keynesianism: tax credits for small businesses, tax increases on multinationals (no kidding), a veterans’ jobs corps, that sort of thing. The president did zero last fall to build up support in Congress for this rubber chicken. All he said—all he boomed—was “PASS THIS BILL!” In other words, the “jobs bill” was never meant as serious legislation—only a rhetorical crutch to cover up the administration’s lack of a program and absence of initiative."


Debt Watch:
$15,728,112,402,859.92
( As of Monday, June 4, 2012 )

Change: +$3,205,037,865
Your share as a citizen: $50,299.68
Share per household: $137,680.88
Debt since Obama inauguration: $5,101,235,353,947


Topic Three: Going Green
Green politics: "At the beginning of his administration, President Obama insisted that if we didn’t follow their lead, we would surrender the hugely profitable renewable energy sector to those sagacious Spaniards. In 2009, researchers at King Juan Carlos University found that Spain had destroyed 2.2 jobs in other industries for every green job it created. It also calculated that the Spanish govern-ment has spent more than half a million euros for each green job created since 2000, while wind industry jobs cost more than 1 million euros apiece. “Since 2009,” reports the Wall Street Journal, “the Obama administration has awarded more than $1 billion to American companies to make advanced batteries for electric vehicles. Halfway to a six-year goal of producing one million electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles, auto makers are barely at 50,000 cars.” Well, that leaves just 950,000 cars to go. Obama believed he was smart enough to start whole new industries simply by sluicing taxpayer dollars into the right maws. Any suggestion that the transition to inefficient energy sources might come at a cost to taxpayers or economic growth was derided as a "false choice."

The 'scientifically illiterate' are more likely to believe in climate change: "A US government-funded survey has found that Americans with higher levels of scientific and mathematical knowledge are more sceptical regarding the dangers of climate change than their more poorly educated fellow citizens. The results of the survey are especially remarkable as it was plainly not intended to show any such thing: Rather, the researchers and trick-cyclists who carried it out were doing so from the position that the "scientific consensus" (carbon-driven global warming is ongoing and extremely dangerous) is a settled fact, and the priority is now to find some way of getting US voters to believe in the need for urgent, immediate and massive action to reduce CO2 emissions."


Tweet of the Day:
Dana Loesch (@DLoesch): I wonder if it will be a zombie apocalypse today with the dead rising to vote in #WI.


Topic Four: Steal Money, Buy Votes
A discussion of the investment strategies of both Romney and Obama: "Private equity firms partner with financial institutions, venture capitalists, and private investors to purchase companies that are often poorly managed and losing money. The private equity firms believe that with hands-on management, possibly a reduced work force, restructuring, the sale of some assets, the company can be salvaged, either for a sale or ongoing profitability. The goal is to make money for the investors, not to guarantee someone a job. Some companies make it and others do not. The risk of gain or loss remains with the investors with their own money at no risk to tax payers."

"President Obama and some of his fellow Democrats have criticized Mitt Romney’s tenure at the private equity firm Bain Capital. What’s there to criticize? Romney and his business partners invested their own money in failed companies and brought a good number of them back to life. Sounds like a good thing to me. Did some people lose their jobs? Yes. Did some people keep their jobs? Yes. If the investment had not been made, would everybody have lost their jobs? Yes."

President Obama has been using money that the government took from you and me to “invest” in companies for political purposes. We didn’t give him permission to do this. There is no constitutional basis for such “investments.” If a private equity firm stole money from you and me to invest in a company – no matter how good the investment might be – the managers of that company would go to jail."


Food for Thought - A Quote from our Founders
"If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them will deprive the people of all property until their children wake up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered."

-Thomas Jefferson


Topic Five: The Overplayed Hand
Erick Erickson discusses why the Obama campaign team has failed to live up to its expectations: "Between his election and now, Barack Obama had the House and Senate, did nothing to improve the economy, caved in to Republican demands, grandstanded at the Olympics meeting only to see Chicago lose out, campaigned for Democrats in Virgina, Massachusetts, New Jersey and elsewhere only to have them lose, and has routinely overplayed his hand in office. That is, in fact, Barack Obama’s true pattern behind the hype and myth. He overplays his hand and has his spin machine convince the Washingto Press Corps that it was all intentional and his campaign team are geniuses. The only thing is — they aren’t."

"Campaigns and people are fickle. No doubt at some point the Romney campaign will have a worse week than Barack Obama. But for everyone wondering right now how such a well polished and brilliant campaign team could have such a bad series of consecutive weeks the answer is simple. They never were the brilliant, well polished campaign team they’ve claimed to be."


Tomorrow in History
June 6, 1946 - 155,000 Allied troops land on the beaches of Normandy as part of Operation Overlord, now known as D-Day.


Grab Bag - Interesting and Important Stories to Conclude Your Evening:
Stealth destroyer could undermine China strategy

More Americans identify as independent than at any time in the past 75 years

The IRS's lies about religious political involvement

Court orders photographer to violate religious beliefs

TSA not doing its job

52% of unemployed have been to college

The "Eco-Thugs"

FOX's 'The Five' beats Stewart and Colbert



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D.C. Daily: June 5, 2012

Senate
Yesterday's Action:
Yesterday, the Senate took the following actions:
  • Passed S. Res. 462, recognizing National Foster Care Month as an opportunity to raise awareness about the challenges faced by children in the foster care system, acknowledging the dedication of foster care parents, advocates, and workers, and encouraging Congress to implement policy to improve the lives of children in the foster care system.
  • Confirmed the nomination of Timothy S. Hillman to be District Judge for the District of Massachusetts, by a vote of 88 yeas to 1 nay.
  • Considered the motion to proceed to consideration of S. 3220, the "Paycheck Fairness Act".

Today's Schedule:
The Senate will meet at 10:00 AM today. The Senate will resume consideration of the motion to proceed to consideration of S. 3220, the "Paycheck Fairness Act", with a vote on the motion to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to consideration at approximately 2:15 PM.


House
Yesterday's Action:
The House was not in session yesterday.

Today's Schedule:
The House will meet today at 12:00 PM. The House is expected to consider ten measures under suspension of the rules. 1) H.R. 2060, the "Central Oregon Jobs and Water Security Act"; 2) H.R. 2336, the "York River Wild and Scenic River Study Act of 2011"; 3) H.R. 1740, to amend the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act to designate a segment of Illabot Creek in Skagit County, Washington, as a component of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System; 4) H.R. 3263, the "Lake Thunderbird Efficient Use Act of 2011"; 5) H.R. 241, to authorize the conveyance of certain National Forest System lands in the Los Padres National Forest in California; 6) H.R. 2512, the "Three Kids Mine Remediation and Reclamation Act"; 7) H.R. 4222, the "Pascua Yaqui Tribe Trust Land Act"; 8) S. 363, to authorize the Secretary of Commerce to convey property of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to the City of Pascagoula, Mississippi, and for other purposes; 9) S. 292, the "Salmon Lake Land Selection Resolution Act"; and 10) H.R. 4282, the "International Child Support Recovery Improvement Act of 2012". The House will also continue consideration of H.R. 5325, the "Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2013", subject to a rule.


Executive Agencies
Significant Proposed Rules:
Today's edition of the Federal Register was unavailable at the time of publication.

Significant Final Rules:
Today's edition of the Federal Register was unavailable at the time of publication.


Supreme Court
The court has concluded scheduled oral arguments for the October 2011 term. However, the court is still meeting to finalize decisions on cases it heard during the preceeding term. The court's next session of oral arguments is scheduled to begin on Monday, October 1, 2012.

Yesterday, the court issued two decisions:
  • Reichle v. Howards: the court reversed a lower court decision and determined that police officers and other law enforcement officers cannot be sued for violating someone's rights if the law or the courts did not recognize that right at the time of the arrest.
  • Armour v. Indianapolis: the court affirmed a lower court decision which stated that the city of Indianapolis was not required to refund taxes to property owners who paid in a lump sum after they forgave the taxes of homeowners who paid on an installment plan.

Monday, June 4, 2012

The Final Five: June 4, 2012



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Tonight's Crazy Story:
'Gannon is not going to the prgrogm': 6 Year Old Outsmarts School With Forged Note
A first grader in Massachusetts was dismissed from school to go home instead of to an after-school program based on a misspelled note written in yellow highlighter. School officials reportedly said the note looked suspicious but dismissed him when they were unable to contact his parent.


Topic One: Entitlement Society
Repairing entitlements is the only way to save the American dream: "Spending on the three main entitlement programs—Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security—is projected to double as a share of the economy within a few decades. Spending on Social Security is driven upwards as more Americans retire, while spending on Medicaid is driven upwards by rising health care costs. Medicare spending is driven both by demographics and rising health care costs. Under President Obama, the nation is building a bridge of debt to the unsustainable future. America is already suffering from almost four years of trillion-dollar-plus deficits; debt held by the public stands at over 70 percent of the economy and is rising. Congress and the President should offer solutions that put these programs on a budget to reduce costs today and preserve them as a safety net for the future."

What's better: a job or a handout? "At best, the results are mediocre. The unemployment rate generally gets the most attention, and that was bad news since the joblessness rate jumped to 8.2 percent. What makes that number particularly painful is that the Obama Administration claimed that the unemployment rate today would be less than 6 percent if the so-called stimulus was adopted. But as you can see from the chart, squandering $800 billion on a Keynesian package hasn’t worked."

The lie about Social Security: "A recent front page USA Today story inadvertently exposed the lie that is Social Security. Though the article was ostensibly about budget deficits, and how unfunded liabilities of the Social Security variety were not properly being accounted for in deficit calculations (they quadruple taxpayer liability), a staff expert at a liberal think tank shed light on why. Sure enough, and despite the protests for years from big government apologists that our Social Security funds are secure, it turns out they’re not. We know this now not because we’re logical, or because some libertarian said so, but because Jim Horney at the liberal Center on Budget Priorities told us exactly that."


Time for a Laugh:
"The concept of the big summer blockbuster didn't exist until "Jaws" in 1975. I'm surprised no one's combined "Jaws" with a fairy tale — "Snow White and the Seven Sharks."
-Craig Ferguson


Topic Two: ObamaCare
Is ObamaCare slowing hiring? "By mandating that employers buy expensive health insurance for their employees, the new health reform law will raise the cost of labor and make it more expensive than otherwise to hire new workers. Plus, the law forces employees to have this expensive fringe benefit, even if they would prefer a less costly health plan in exchange for higher wages. To make matters worse, the health plan that employers will be required to buy will not be viewed by employees as a valuable benefit if they can get the same coverage at highly subsidized rates in the newly created health insurance exchanges. A family with an annual income just over of $30,000, for example, will be able to obtain insurance whose cost is nearly $15,000 for a premium of only about $950. Government (the taxpayers) in this case will be subsidizing 94% of the real cost. If the employer provides that same insurance, there is no new government subsidy (except for very small enterprises) and the benefit is about 50% of the worker's wage!"

Another broken ObamaCare promise: "According to the latest figures, only 170,300 businesses out of more than 4 million that qualify for the small business tax credit have taken advantage of it. That means that only a mere 4.25% of eligible businesses have used the tax credit. The government set out to discover why so few small businesses have applied for and received the tax credit. They found out that the procedure to file for the tax credit is long and cumbersome and many businesses figured it wasn’t worth the effort. According to the Government Accountability Office, the businesses that are supposed to benefit the most by the tax credit are the smaller businesses that pay the lowest wages. However, 80% of these businesses don’t offer health benefits and the tax credit is not big enough to entice them to offer the coverage. Additionally, only 30% of small businesses with 10 or fewer employees offer health insurance benefits. Those that do, pay higher premium costs than larger companies. The tax credit was supposed to help offset those higher costs, but the process takes so much time and effort that the vast majority of them won’t even bother to apply."


Debt Watch:
$15,724,907,364,995.04
( As of Friday, June 1, 2012 )

Change: -$45,777,720,368.96
Your share as a citizen: $50,289.43
Share per household: $137,652.82
Debt since Obama inauguration: $5,098,030,316,082


Topic Three: Wisconsin
Chuck Norris enters the Wisconsin recall, announcing his support for Scott Walker. [Insert Chuck Norris joke of your choice here.] "But there’s a bigger reason that Pres. Clinton came out to Wisconsin to engage in the battle to recall Gov. Walker: Democrats, liberals and progressives like him know that as Wisconsin goes on Tuesday, so possibly goes the nation in November. They fear that a win for Gov. Walker will contribute to conservative momentum that will ultimately lead to President Obama’s defeat in his campaign for re-election. And they’re right. While the fight for conservatives doesn’t start and stop in Wisconsin, it’s an OK Corral of sorts for Democrats and liberals. When their groundless recall of Gov. Walker is shot down, a potent statement will be sent across our land about the type of government We the People want. Walker’s recall is not just about Wisconsin; it is about national reform. It’s about living within our means. It’s about taking back our republic. It is about saving our nation and posterity, one election and state at a time."

Wisconsin group publicizing who does and does not vote. The mailings are being sent by the Greater Wisconsin Political Fund. The Executive Director of the group is Michelle McGrorty, a former employee of the Democratic Caucus. She was granted immunity in a scandal involving illegal use of taxpayer funds for campaigns. With the election coming down to turning out the vote, it seems that the Greater Wisconsin Political Fund is working hard to put pressure on people to turn the vote out tomorrow.


Tweet of the Day:
@mlmelear: Liberals love to help minorities...as long as helping them doesn't include empowering them as individuals.


Topic Four: Democrats Require ID
If you were told that a political party in Massachusetts would be requiring ID in order to vote at their state convention, you would probably expect it to be the Republicans, right? Wrong! Massachusetts Democrats disenfranchised their delegates this weekend by requiring ID to vote at the party's state convention. As the Breitbart article puts it: "When their own party is at state, it seems their priorities are somewhat different that their rhetoric suggests."

Beating the Democrats at their own game: "The text tactic is crashing the party. The Democrats argue that requiring IDs to vote disenfranchise “non-whites.” Eric Holder, the nation’s Attorney General,” told us so. Since we don’t believe in discrimination, it seems that to require anyone to have an ID is by definition discriminatory. ... Every Democrat event will require IDs. Ask politely why an ID is required given the policy of the Attorney General. Videotape everything. Post the videos on YouTube and contact sites like Breitbart, Newsmax, Newsbusters, Godfather Politics, Conservative Byte, Patriot Update, and Vision to America. Be cordial. Don’t yell. Don’t make a fuss. All you’re looking for is for anyone to say that an ID is needed to get in. Since it’s a political event, any ID requirement is an indication of voter disenfranchisement. Make the point over and over again."


Food for Thought - A Quote from our Founders
"You have rights antecedent to all earthly governments; rights that cannot be repealed or restrained by human laws; rights derived from the Great Legislator of the Universe."

-John Adams


Topic Five: Ending Deficit Spending
Godfather Politics discusses Warren Buffett's comments on deficit reduction: "Why would 50 percent of the electorate that does not pay any federal income tax agree to put a restraint on deficit spending when they are the recipients of an unequal distribution of the spending?"

"The great fear of a politician is not being able to go back to his district (congressman) or state (senator) and having to tell voters that he didn’t bring home the bacon. Voters always want to know, “What did you do for me lately?” That is, how much tax money were you able to procure from Washington?"

"Government spending is a massive shell game. People are taxed. The money goes to Washington, and then Congress divides up how the money is spent. Spending the money means sending it back to the states with a congressman’s or senator’s name on it. This insures their re-election."

"The wild cards in every discussion about fiscal policies are voters. We are in this fiscal mess because a majority of people voted for it. Californians are about to vote on whether taxes should be increased to pay for the state’s huge deficit. Surveys show that 59 percent of the people are for the tax increase. Why? It’s simple: The people voting for the increase won’t be paying the tax."


Tomorrow in History
June 5, 1977 - The Apple II, Apple's first personal computer, goes on sale.


Grab Bag - Interesting and Important Stories to Conclude Your Evening:
Is the handbrake going extinct?

Obama's busy day...at taxpayer expense

San Antonio Schools to track students via microchip in student IDs

The next President will shape the Supreme Court's future

Facebook developing technology to allow users under age 13

Will she ever stop lying?

Liberals don't like it when they get a taste of their own medicine

Obama: go buy a thingamajig



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D.C. Daily: June 4, 2012

Senate
Friday's Action:
The Senate was not in session on Friday.

Today's Schedule:
The Senate will meet at 2:00 PM today. The Senate will resume consideration of the motion to proceed to consideration of S. 3220, the "Paycheck Fairness Act". At 5 PM, the Senate will begin consideration of the nomination of Timothy S. Hillman to be District Judge for the District of Massachusetts, and a vote on confirmation will occur at approximately 5:30 PM.


House
Friday's Action:
During business Friday, the House took the following actions:
  • Resumed consideration of H.R. 5325, the "Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2013". Action was taken on several amendments.


Today's Schedule:
The House will not meet today. The next scheduled meeting of the House will be at 12:00 PM on Tuesday, June 4.


Executive Agencies
Significant Proposed Rules:
There were no significant proposed rules printed in today's Federal Register.

Significant Final Rules:
There were no significant final rules printed in today's Federal Register.


Supreme Court
The court has concluded scheduled oral arguments for the October 2011 term. However, the court is still meeting to finalize decisions on cases it heard during the preceeding term. The court's next session of oral arguments is scheduled to begin on Monday, October 1, 2012.