Saturday, January 7, 2012

Quick Hits - January 7, 2011

The battle for the Republican Presidential nomination is heating up as the GOP candidates stand off in a 9pm Eastern debate tonight hosted by WMUR / ABC and again at 9am Eastern tomorrow morning on NBC's 'Meet the Press'.  Latest polls from New Hampshire show Mitt Romney with a commanding lead, followed by Ron Paul.  Rick Santorum is seeing a surge since his narrow loss in Iowa, but there are questions if it will be enough to bring him into second.  Newt Gingrich continues to fade, Jon Huntsman and Rick Perry remain in the doldrums.

NH is an 'open' primary which means that registered Democrats and Independents can 'help' determine who will represent the Republican Party against President Obama.  This remains one of the more asinine aspects of the primary process

The expectations for these debates are around how will Santorum go - will he focus his attention on the President, on Mitt Romney, or work to finish off the other candidates?  Will he keep taking the high road in whichever path he takes?  Pretty much ensured to not take the high road, the expectations are that Newt Gingrich will continue to wage a scorched earth campaign against not only Mitt Romney, but also likely Ron Paul and Rick Santorum.  Jon Huntsman didn't campaign in Iowa, focusing all of his attention here, but still hasn't been able to poll into double digits - and holds only a very slight lead over Gingrich.

Ralph Nader came out to note that the White House pressured Democrats not to challenge Barack Obama in the Democrat primaries - seeking to avoid the type of primary fight that ultimately drove President Lyndon Johnson to withdraw from his bid for a second full term.  This is not really much of a surprise given all that the progressive and hard left wings of the Democrat party have invested in the President.

The Massachusetts Senatorial candidate who said that she was the intellectual source for the OccupyWallStreet movement apparently has no problems taking Wall Street money to fund her campaign to unseat Republican Scott Brown.  Elizabeth Warren is taking campaign funds from the Democrat Senatorial Campaign Committee which over the last seven years has received over $40 million in Wall Street contributions - including over $1.5 million so far this campaign season.  The fact that Warren is just another hypocrite should not be much of a surprise for anyone.

Speaking of hypocrites and double standards, records are showing that the number one beneficiary of receiving Administration waivers from having to follow and be subject to the Obamacare requirements are labor unions.

As the President announced plans to gut the US national defense program, including the strategy that existed since the end of the Second World War to have a military capable of fighting and winning two regional conflicts simultaneously, the President and his DoD continue to apply politics to decisions impacting our national security.

The latest comes from the DoD decision as to whom should build the next light attack aircraft for the US military - a company based in the US, in a US factory providing jobs to Americans - or a company based in Brazil, in factories in Brazil providing jobs to Brazilians.  The Administration has decided that the latter.

With this Administration, the decision shouldn't be much of a surprise.  The President believes in wealth redistribution - so prefers to redistribute the wealth of the US to Brazil.  This isn't the first time either.  The Administration has all but halted deep water oil production in US waters in the Gulf (other countries haven't - including Cuba / Chinese partnerships) preferring to direct deep water oil production to Brazilian waters - promising $2B in US funds to facilitate the drilling off Brazil.

Andrew C. McCarthy, a former US Assistant Attorney for New York, notes in his review of the President's contemptuous appointment of 4 officials bypassing the Senate's constitutional authority, that the President is listening to the demands of one of the dumbest people on the face of the planet - Thomas Friedman...and rule like a Chicom dictator...
President Obama has fulfilled a second Tom Friedman fantasy — the first being that he is, in fact, President Obama. “I have fantasized . . . that, what if we could just be China for a day,” the New York Times star columnist gushed for his ponderous fellow travelers on Meet the Press. “I mean where we could actually, you know, authorize the right solutions.”

It was May 2010, not long after Obama and a Congress dominated by Democrats had rammed through Obamacare, the most sweeping government usurpation of private industry and individual liberty in American history. Soon they’d be adding Dodd-Frank’s paralyzing intrusion into the financial sector. Yet, despite the shock and awe of hope and change, here was the Progressive Poobah, grousing that “my democracy” was failing “to work with the same authority, focus and stick-to-itiveness” as a totalitarian Communist dictatorship. After all, unburdened by our remnants of free-market competition, by the gridlock and sausage-making of two-party politics, the Chicoms produce trade and budget surpluses, state-of-the-art airports, and enviro-friendly high-speed rail. All we can manage, “on everything from the economy to environment,” Friedman complained, are “suboptimal solutions” — apparently not to be confused with the optimal Chinese menu of forced abortions, religious repression, secret police, kangaroo courts, and air you could cut with a chopstick.

Are these stories related?

The lottery checks for 85 winners in Illinois, totalling over $150,000, bounced this week

...Moody's lowers Illinois credit rating again.

The progressives in the LA Times tell Governor Moonbeam to continue full speed ahead with funding and developing the California High Speed Rail Network - seeing not only the value in spending $120 billion plus in government funds on a boondoggle without a viable business plan - but in the idea that a new state agency with oversight of the High Speed Rail Network Board will ensure it's success.

This is as the IBD notes that the Governor's irresponsible budget and plan for massive tax hikes will kill any hope whatsoever for a California economic recovery in the near future. The Governor's budget and tax propositions fail to address the fundamental problems that brought CA to this point and will cause even more damage to the State's economy.

In a horrible tragedy, 11 were killed in New Zealand during a hot air ballooning accident yesterday. The passenger basket erupted into a ball of fires as it struck power lines during it's descent - then skyrocketed up before crashing to the earth. 2 died as they leaped from the blazing basket - the others were burned beyond recognition.

A report is coming from Syria that a top Syrian General has defected from the regime to join the forces attempting to replace Syrian dictator Assad.

The Barack Obama foreign policy of appeasement and apology remains active in the region as a State Department official tells Arab media that 'We want to reach out to the islamist parties' that are taking over from the secular Arab dictators - even as these parties call out against the US, Israel, and human rights.

On This Day in History

1789 - The First US Presidential Election takes place - voters cast ballots to choose state electors who select George Washington to the First US President.

1815 - Even though the war is officially over, word has not gotten to British forces seeking to capture New Orleans. The British lost the Battle of New Orleans - the last major battle of the War of 1812.

1942 - Japanese forces on Luzon commence their attacks on US and Filipino forces on the Bataan peninsula.

1953 - President Harry Truman announces that the US has developed the hydrogen bomb.

1979 - Cambodian mass murderer Pol Pot is overthrown. During his brief reign, he killed one third of Cambodia's population.

1989 - Japanese emperor Hirohito dies. Hirohito was the emperor during the Second World War - and many believe he escaped being held accountable for war crimes.

1999 - The impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton started in the US Senate. The President was acquitted on all charges.

One last note - this on the War of 1812, comes from the Canadian paper, the Ottawa Citizen, in Canada's capital, noting that this is the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812.  The Op-Ed calls the War of 1812 Canada's War of Independence....from the United States.  This was also the last foreign war fought on Canadian soil.

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