The Wurzelbacher Effect

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Cross posted on Conservative Badlands.

CT

To say the polls and the economy have been anything less than bipolar is an understatement. Fear and concern about the future are driving this election more than in anytime since the 70's, the reasons for all this trepidation is obvious though. What is not, is why the American population’s perception of Obama and McCain is so erratic? Obama’s lead continues to ebb and flow like the tide.



If you believe the lesser than reputable polling sources or the MSM, Obama has the election in the bag. However, what I don’t trust about their information is the margin of victory they are declaring. Here are some numbers from IBD and Rasmussen from the last eighteen days. I chose these two because of their reputation for accurate polling results, techniques, and continuity.

On Rasmussen, from the 17th-26th, Obama did not have much to worry about, IBD has a similar situation from the 17th-21st. Then, things started changing with people’s acuity of the election, what was it? On or around the 15th of this month was when we met Joe Wurzelbacher. The gentleman who, so unexpectedly but graciously, accepted the mission of confronting Obama on his policies. This encounter revealed Obama's true nature concerning; taxes, wealth, and redistribution.

The effect was not immediate as you can see by the polls. But Joe opened the door for the GOP to be able to hammer Obama with vids, ads, and even on some MSM outlets about his platform on taxation and wealth redistribution. This is the only factor I can see that has some legitimacy where the erosion of Obama's lead is concerned.

While the Ayers controversy is important with the Conservative base and purists, it has not been a concern to most Moderates and Independents. Thus, it has been a somewhat ineffective campaign tactic. However, Obama’s proven wealth redistribution philosophy is the common denominator between the above mentioned groups. You might even be able to include some Blue Dog Democrats in that number also.

There is also a fear that Obama and his Progressive cronies are going to increase government spending and raise taxes. This is a legitimate apprehension, with the bail out and the upcoming proposal of ANOTHER stimulus package, the question arises, “Who is going to pay for all of this?” The average American is not ignorant; they may not understand complex macroeconomic derivatives or know what the GCI (Global Competitiveness Index) is. But, they do know that raising taxes and raucous spending during a recession, or otherwise, is tantamount to economic suicide.

Rasmussen now has some interesting poll results out, it seems that the American voter is changing their mind about McCain v. Obama on taxes, “After several weeks of John McCain’s campaign attacks on Barack Obama’s tax plan and idea of “spreading the wealth around”, the latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds voters trust McCain more than Obama on taxes, 47% to 45%.”

There is also a slight shift in opinion concerning who they trust more on economic issues, “McCain also has gained ground as the candidate to trust on economic issues. Forty-eight percent (48%) now trust the Republican hopeful more than the Democrat while 47% hold the opposite view.”

This has to be the explanation of why the polls are shifting, further closing the gap between McCain and Obama. Keep in mind, these are national polls, they represent voters on a national level, not regional. Internal state polling still has McCain at a severe disadvantage in key areas. Though, as a rule of thumb, when national polls tend to shift, in time the state polls usually follow. The question is, does enough time remain for McCain to recover the ground needed to be victorious?

Either way, win or lose, I am giving Joe Wurzelbacher credit for shedding some light on this issue. We have been so lost in the torrent of economic flooding I think people have forgotten how much taxation and spending actually effects the economy. This is why I am calling this phenomena “The Wurzelbacher Effect.”

-CT


"Happy Hunting!"
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Be Careful When PUMA-ing, You Might Get More Than You Bargain For

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Also appears on Conservative Badlands

CT

A few days ago one of the contributors on Conservative Badlands did a piece called the PUMA Factor, it was a look at how this block of voters might be one of the groups to decide the Presidential election in 08’. It made me realize that I didn’t know much about their movement or philosophies, other than the obvious. PUMA means Party Unity My Ass and they were angry because HRC got lambasted in the primaries and there was a SERIOUS possibility of caucus manipulation. So, I had an out of the ordinary idea, I figured go into their virtual community and ask them if anyone would be interested in answering a few questions for this post. Well I got some takers.



Most of the PUMA’s that answered the call of the wild in my open thread were female but the composite of their whole movement, I imagine, is a little harder to determine. One very pleasant and intelligent woman, who goes by the SN, Angrynana said this, “Also, there is a mistake in thinking all Pumas and Puma types are older, white women. There are men, people of many religions, all races, gays and lesbians, young, middle-aged, and older Pumas. There are groups from the West and the East. There are Native American Pumas and African American Pumas.” I can honestly say I believe this assessment. Since there were about 18 million people who voted for Hillary in the primaries and the Democratic Party is noted for its pluralism, it makes sense they are a very diverse lot.

What I was more curious about was what brought them to this point and what were they going to do after the election. Their responses ranged from moving to the GOP, going Independent, to retaking the Democratic Party. Judging the answers, Ereizindian sums the majority of their thoughts up well, “If the Dem leadership continues to deprecate its members who were slandered and vilified in the primaries and GE, I shall become an Indie, possibly on my way to becoming a Republican.” This is not to say all of sudden they identify with the Republican or Conservative movement. For them, however, it will be a near strategic impossibility to retake the Democratic Party. It has slid too far into an abyss of identity politics and viral cult worship, it is no longer about issues, it is about one man.

Despite their obvious visceral anger towards the Democratic Party establishment a single theme reigned supreme in the great majority of their posts and emails. Helen put it best, “IT IS COUNTRY AND PRINCIPLES BEFORE PARTY.” I was absolutely, jaw droppingly, astounded to hear a Hillary supporting Democrat in Exile say this. These responses gave me the insight to look at them as I have never looked at a political opponent before, I saw Americans who care about their country. This got me thinking, who am I to judge whether they can love their country just because they are Democrats. Neither Republicans nor Conservatives have the copyright or moniker on patriotism. After all aren’t PUMA's demonstrating this by standing by our sides?

They have become apostates to their party but not their country, that speaks volumes to me. PUMA's have recognized that this is about America, not a singular person. They also understand this has nothing to do with the sweeping change and one man, little m, cannnot shoulder this all by his lonesome. That goal is far too lofty and enchanting to be anywhere near reality. Truth be told, he is neither Atlas nor Prometheus, even if he thinks he is.

In closing I would like to thank all of the ladies and gentlemen who so graciously accepted my invite to participate in this undertaking, I hope I did you justice. Sometimes we get reminders of things from unexpected sources and that is what the PUMA’s did for me. My suggestion to Republicans and Conservatives, alike, try and understand them. Politically we may need them as much as they need us, we are rapidly becoming a house that is acquiring vacancies and they may need a home. More importantly, they are Americans who love their country enough to look past partisan lines. That, my friends, is the miracle of being an American first.

-CT


“Happy Hunting!”

Pic cred to The Confluence, I violated some internet copyright laws by snagging them. Hopefully in the spirit of the post they won't mind.
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ATF Busts Up Skinhead Plot

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CT

ATF disrupts skinhead plot to assassinate Obama

WASHINGTON – Federal agents have broken up a plot to assassinate Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama and shoot or decapitate 102 black people in a Tennessee murder spree, the ATF said Monday Read more...
And so it begins. I have a feeling we are going to be seeing a lot more of this ignorance and depravity in the near future. I might have serious differences with Senator Obama on policies and even question much of his motivation, but this obvious stupidity is beyond belief. More importantly is the intention of killing innocent Americans who have nothing to do with the candidate. This is about race and that is it, plain and simple. It is absolutely disgusting. I hope they hang them up by their balls.

-CT


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PUMA:Open Thread

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1) What are your plans, as a PUMA, to do after the election if McCain loses or wins.

2) Do you intend on staying Dem, convert to Repub, or go Indie.

3) What motivated you to vote for McCain/Palin?

If there is anything you would like to add, please feel free, as I stated any input is great, thank you for your time.

-CT
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Special Forces strike into Syria

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CT

Seems American special forces flexed their muscles in Syria proper.
DAMASCUS, Syria – U.S. military helicopters launched an extremely rare attack Sunday on Syrian territory close to the border with Iraq, killing eight people in a strike the government in Damascus condemned as "serious aggression."
The article goes on to say,
"We are taking matters into our own hands," the official told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because of the political sensitivity of cross-border raids.
The Syrian government of course condemned the preemption,
"Syria condemns this aggression and holds the American forces responsible for this aggression and all its repercussions. Syria also calls on the Iraqi government to shoulder its responsibilities and launch and immediate investigation into this serious violation and prevent the use of Iraqi territory for aggression against Syria," the government statement said."
My problem with the Syrian government is they are acting like they are totally innocent and have no regional control. There is ample evidence of them at least turning a blind eye to these insurgent operations which is allowing them to continue. But, the debate will rage and people will still have their opinions since unilateral preemption is such a touchy subject.

-CT

"Happy Hunitng!"
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You don’t need a Weatherman to know which way the wind blows.

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CT

All the talk about the Obama-Ayers connect is intriguing. Not because of Ayers or Obama, but the history of the Weatherman and the SDS (Students for a Democratic Society). I must admit, I have a had a morbid fascination with their history prior to this controversy. Maybe it was growing up in the 70’s and watching to many Dirty Harry movies, you know hard-ass cop against the weed smoking, RPG wielding, commie, dust heads.

Because Ayers is such a prevalent figure in this election I am not going to spend to much time on the SDS, this is not meant to undercut their historical relevance to the Weatherman.

SDS came into existence in 1960, before this it was known as SLID (Students League for Industrial Democracy). They were the most notable and powerful organization of the New Left, Hippie take over of Liberalism. In the start, their rhetoric was primarily focused on the banning of anti-communism, which they saw as wholly undemocratic. They also blamed the United States paranoia concerning Russia as the biggest obstacle for nuclear disarmament.

With the escalation of the Vietnam war in 1965 the SDS went on the move, severely changing its tactics to more protests and allowing any one in including communists. This strained relations with some of the older Left organizations. There numbers grew but it was in 1969 at the SDS national convention they split due to internal squabbling. It was out of this the Weathermen were born. A pamphlet was passed out at the convention with a lyric from a Bob Dylan song, “You don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows,” which inspired their name.

The Weathermen’s first act was a series of riots in Chicago known as the Days of Rage, in October of 1969. It was simultaneous with the trial of the Chicago Eight. Since the Weathermen felt that militancy was necessary and would garner more results than peaceful protest rioting was just a natural progression.

The Days of Rage was basically about making the American public “wake up” to their country’s complacency towards its involvement in Vietnam. Overall about 200-300 hundred protesters rioted through the Gold Coast neighborhood of Chicago. But the riot was dismantled by the authorities. Two days later the Weathermen launched another riot in the Loop, Chicago’s main business district, but the police were ready and the riot only lasted about 15 minutes.

The Weatherman became even more radical after the December 1969 raid of Fred Hamilton’s home, a noted leader of the Black Panther movement. In which he and another man, named Mark Clark, were killed and four others wounded. The Weathermen issued a declaration of war against the United States government and changed their names to the Weather Underground Organization. They continued on their terrorist campaign with bombings of the Pentagon, the Capital building, banks, and police stations.

In March of 1970 in Greenwich Village in New York, while preparing to bomb a non-commissioned officers dance at Fort Dix, one of the nail bombs that was going to be used detonated prematurely. This resulted in the deaths of three members of the WUO.

In the early 70’s the WUO shifted to a more Marxist-Leninist approach and published Prairie Fire: The Politics of Revolutionary Anti-Imperialism. There were about five thousand copies produced and spread around the nation. It was also hailed by Leftist newspapers and even appeared in bookstores.

On another interesting note the Weathermen were responsible for the September 1970 prison break of Timothy Leary. The Brothers of Eternal Love, an LSD distribution ring, paid them $20.000 to break him out of jail.

In 1971 the Citizen’s Commission to Investigate the FBI broke into one of the Bureau’s Pennsylvania offices and stole hundreds of files containing information about the subversive actions of Leftist groups, including the Weathermen. This was the catalyst for the end of, COINTELPRO, an FBI counterintelligence operation Later in 1973 the FBI proceeded with the 'Special Target Information Development' which meant sending agents in to directly penetrate the Weathermen organization. But due to prohibited tactics agents used any charges against the Weathermen were to be dropped. Basically the Weathermen no longer had to remain underground and would face minimal charges if they turned themselves in.

After the 1976 conference called “Hard Times” the Weathermen dissolved. This was due to fracturing between them and other racially motivated Leftist organizations. Also, the East Coast wings of the Weathermen felt there was a lack of commitment to violence, by other members. This casued strain in the leadership. Over the next few years members would either turn themselves in or join other radical organizations. But a “peaceful” wing of the WUO still exists and it is called the Prairie Fire Organizing Committee.

Cred to Wiki info necessary to fill in the blanks I could not provide. Believe me there would have been a lot of them. Here is the link to the article I drew from for this shortened version, Weathermen. Try some reads on COINTELPRO and the SDS, very interesting also.


-CT

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Partisanship, Special Interest Groups, and Why Voters Accept 2nd Rate Legislation

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CT

Analysis Online, published an article How Leaders Make Policy Decisions. In an ongoing study Professor Max Bazerman, Jesse Isidor Straus Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, quantifies why policy makers lack the ability to “ make wise tradeoffs, or to give up small losses for much larger gain.” as well as the voters’ willingness to accept their poor decision making processes.

This is particularly interesting due to the climate of this election. Numerous special interest groups, media outlets, and political parties have ambitions that they are promoting. Messages will be distorted and lacking significant facts in order to shift the judgment of the voting public. Not to mention the sweeping atmosphere of “change” both sides in this election are promoting.

Bazerman offers two reasons for this irrational judgment process: "proliferation of special interest groups" and a host of “judgment biases.” He sees these two factors as the most important for guiding constituents to accept middle of the road policies that inevitably do more harm than good for the country.
“The problem comes when actions designed to strengthen the political power of the special interest are misinterpreted as providing greater benefits to individuals who identify with the group, when the reality is to the contrary, Bazerman explains.”
Special interest groups and self-seeking individuals have promoted many worthless causes, this goes for both sides of the aisle. In their current strategies, most use facts are considerably generalized or try to generate fear to reinforce their preferred outcome. A good example is the current economic crisis, yes had to slip this in. Bother parties have adopted this mentality, implying the rival group was the causality of the situation. This is simply not true, evidence is supporting that a host of bad decisions, made by both parties, throughout a fifteen-year period led to it.

With judgment biased, he lays out four reasons that people will tolerate fundamentally flawed policies.
  • The Harm of Omission – People (including policy makers) are more fearful of the harms that could result from action than the harms of inaction even when the harms of inaction are greater.
  • Status Quo Bias – Connected to the bias of omission is the bias exhibited by many people of preferring the status quo. “People are more likely to be concerned about the risk of change than about the risk of failing to change, and will be motivated to preserve current systems and beliefs,” notes Bazerman.
  • The Fixed Pie Pitfall – Hefty, black-and-white generalizations about situations and policy decisions dominate this judgment bias, which is strongly exhibited in negotiations and partisan fervor, notes Bazerman. This bias is built on the assumption (when opposing sides battle) that what is good for one side must necessarily be bad for the other side.
  • The Winner’s Circle Curse– This one is highlighted by the high-dollar bidding for sports franchises and stadium improvements that has become trademark with modern day sports. Bazerman says taxpayers are ill-served by this type of competition because the winner more often than not is the party that has most overestimated the benefits of winning.

Again, with the economic crisis, partisan biased is driving poor decision making. So far we have been offered nothing but bail-outs and stimulus packages. The psychological aspects of this are particularly important. Neither side wishes to be perceived as the cause of the problem, but both want to be recognized as the one with the solution. This promotes each party to rush, trying to beat the other, which leads to poor solutions that become policy. Thereby exacerbating an already bad situation. They are more concerned with the political outcome than the well being of our nation. Partisan minded voters are more than gladly to back up these decisions, regardless of their value or product.

Voters have a responsibility to see beyond party motivation and tactics. Fundamentally understanding the issues is imperative and it's quite alright to understand those issues based on personal political philosophy. But, what is as equally important is to understand the motivations of the people supporting those issues. Reshaping the way we make policy is just as important as reshaping the policies themselves. If we do not, we are dooming this country and its population to years of flawed legislation supporting the self-serving needs of individual groups, which will only continue fracturing our society.

-CT


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In the News: 23rd October 2008

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CT
_______________________________________________________________________________________

Top Iran officials recommend preemptive strike against Israel
By Barak Ravid, Haaretz Correspondent-Senior Tehran officials are recommending a preemptive strike against Israel to prevent an Israeli attack on Iran's nuclear reactors, a senior Islamic Republic official told foreign diplomats two weeks ago in London.

The official, Dr. Seyed G. Safavi, said recent threats by Israeli authorities strengthened this position, but that as of yet, a preemptive str
ike has not been integrated into Iranian policy.

Safavi is head of the Research Institute of Strategic Studies in Tehran, and an adviser to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. The institute is directly affiliated with Khamenei's office and with the Revolutionary Guards, and advises both on foreign policy issues.Safavi is also the brother of Yahya Rahim Safavi, who was the head of the Revolutionary Guards until a year ago and now is an adviser to Khamenei, and holds significant influence on security matters in the Iranian government. Read more...
Preemptive strike against Israel? Yeah that's smart. I sure hope the insurgent backing government of Iran isn't listening to this guy. Big Bad, aka the United States, would cause it to start raining steel if Israel got whacked. I can think of no other way to put it.
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ELECTION REJECTION: NETWORK NEWS SLUMPS;VIEWERSHIP FADES
The Obama-McCain match-up is proving to be a lackluster election ticket for the Big 3 network news programs, according to NIELSEN MEDIA RESEARCH.

As the sh
outing from the trail and the frantic spinning from the anchor desks intensify, the audience is voting with their remotes.

All 3 evening n
ews shows experienced audience drops year-to-year for the week of Oct. 13-19, 2008.

CBSNEWS w/ Couric shed a half a million viewers, falling from 6.4 million t
o 5.9 million; ABCNEWS dropped from 8.1 million to 7.6 million; NBCNEWS slumped from 8.2 million to 7.8 million.
I don't know why but for some strange reason I don't feel sorry for them.
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Oil falls below $67 on US recession fears
By Madlen Read, AP-Oil prices tumbled below $67 a barrel to 16-month lows Wednesday after the government reported big increases in U.S. fuel supplies -- more evidence that the economic downturn is drying up energy demand.

he Energy Information Administration said crude inventories jumped by 3.2 million barrels last week, above the 2.9 million barrel increase expected by analysts surveyed by energy research firm Platts. Gasoline inventories rose by 2.7 million barrels last week, and inventories of distillates, which include heating oil and diesel, rose by 2.2 million barrels. Read more...
Remember the good ole' days, about a month or two ago, when this was all we had to worry about? My how things change from week to week. And let me tell you I am so worried about those poor folks in OPEC starving to death. What will they do?

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Larijani: Iran prefers Obama
YnetNews-Iranian parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said Wednesday that Iran would prefer Democrat Barack Obama in the White House next year. Larijani also dismissed any idea that the US would attack Iran.

"We are leaning more in favor of Barack Obama because he is more flexible and rational, even though we know American policy will not change that much," Larijani said at a press conference during a visit to Bahrain. Read more...
I would prefer him too. He has absolutely no foreign policy experience and his mentor is Joe Biden, the Iranians must be jumping for joy over his possible election.

____________________________________________________________________________________

Cred to the Drudge Report for stayin' up late providing all the cool links. Thanks!

-CT

"Happy Hunting!"
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Tales From the Drip: Liberal Myths About De-Regulation

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Pundit,



Most of the blame placed on de-regulation, by the Left, for the current economic crisis is simply a misleading account of the causes. This is as unreasonable as the Right calling Liberals, socialists. While heaping the blame on de-regulation in this environment of witch hunting is the trendy political motivation du jour, it is quite incorrect. Both sides in this mess were looking for a boogey man, for the Right it was the CRA and for the Left it was Gramm-Leach-Bliley.

De-regulation of the financial sector predisposes people to thinking that all of the rules were gone and Wall Street was running amuck in an orgy of economic freedom. Nutz! Regulatory expansions were never abandoned, nor were any of the rules discarded. It is a misnomer to assume otherwise.

Since the beginnings of the Bush administration, there has been little attempt at actual de-regulation of the financial sectors. From the Heritage Foundation.
In terms of rulemaking--the promulgation of specific rules by regulatory agencies--the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is by far the most active among agencies in the financial realm. Based on data from the Government Accountability Office, the SEC completed 23 proceedings since the beginning of the Bush Administration that resulted in a substantive and major change (defined as an economic effect of $100 million or more) in regulatory burdens. Of those, only eight--about a third--lessened burdens.

The Federal Reserve reports five major rulemakings in the database since
1996--four of which were deregulatory. The only rule change reported by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Controller of the Currency is the 1997 adoption of new capital reserve standards, an action with mixed consequences.
As far as Gramm-Leach-Bliley, is concerned the major banks and holding companies that have collapsed were actually unaffected by the actual legislation. From AEI.
None of the investment banks that got into financial trouble, specifically Bear Stearns, Merrill Lynch, Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs Group Inc., were affiliated with commercial banks, and none were affected in any way by the repeal of Glass-Steagall.
But, the CRA amendments in Gramm-Bliley, was motivation for smaller banks and thrifts, mortgage underwriters, etc. to start a major issuance of sub prime loans, circumventing credit standards set up by the industry. These were purchased in package deals called Residential Mortgage Backed Securities by these major institutions. When people defaulted on them these companies, who so kindly bought them (Sarcasm intended.), were left with enormous amounts of debt without the liquid capital to back that debt up. Sucked to be them.

Concerning the repeal of Glass-Steagll, actually might be favorable to correcting the economic crisis.
AEI-The repeal of portions of the Glass-Steagall Act in 1999--often cited by people who know nothing about that law--has no relevance whatsoever to the financial crisis, with one major exception: it permitted banks to be affiliated with firms that underwrite securities, and thus allowed Bank of America Corp. to acquire Merrill Lynch & Co. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. to buy Bear Stearns Cos. Both transactions saved the government the costs of a rescue and spared the market substantial additional turmoil.
and
Heritage-In fact, President Bill Clinton--who signed the reform bill into law--defended the legislation in a recent interview, saying, "I don't see that signing that bill had anything to do with the current crisis. Indeed, one of the things that has helped stabilize the current situation as much as it has is the purchase of Merrill Lynch by Bank of America, which was much smoother than it would have been if I hadn't signed that bill."
Only a fool would think that tyrannical regulation or free market anarchy are the proper approaches to the economy and its problems. Regrettably with the witch hunt mentality and it being an election year and enemy is needed. As time goes on and more peer review studies are released the truth is sure to come out. Until then we will probably have to endured crushing laws and acts seeking to undermine the free market even further more than likely bringing in more financial problems in the future.

OmegaPundit


‘The last word on everything.”
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In the News : 22nd October 2008

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CT

Oh where to start? Frank needs to keep his mouth shut about tax increases, Murtha, I don't even know what to say about him shuttin' up, and Obie on McCain's willful ignorance. It's a morning full of comedy!
______________________________________________________________________________________

Barney Frank on Tax and Spend



You want it, you got it. "My encouraging will have more impact on Senator Obama." "Needs to be a focus on spending increases." "Deficit fears need to take a second seat." and "There needs to be tax increases." Yeah Barney sounds like a lot of new ideas from you and your Liberal pals. Tax and spend your way out of enormous debt, do I have to say anymore?
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John Murtha Calls Western Pa. 'Redneck'

CHARLEROI, Pa. -- U.S. Rep. John Murtha is calling many of the people who put him in office "rednecks."

The news comes one week after Murtha claimed the area is racist, then apologized for that comment.

In explaining his comments about racism, Murtha, D-Johnstown, told WTAE Channel 4 Action News on Monday it's difficult for many in the area to change. Murtha said that just five to 10 years ago the entire area was "redneck."

Now Murtha said only certain segments of the population are holding on to those racist feelings. Read m
ore...
Who keeps electing these people to public office? The only place we should ever have the unfortunate sightings of Murtha or Frank are on the cover of the National Enquirer. These people are ridiculously stupid and getting worse, I think they are O2 deprived.
____________________________________________________________________________________

Obama says McCain offers 'willful ignorance'
By JENNIFER LOVEN, (AP) - Democrat Barack Obama said Tuesday that Republican John McCain is offering little more than "willful ignorance, wishful thinking, outdated ideology" to an economy in crisis, seeking to capitalize on the main issue that is propelling him forward in the race for the White House.

"While President Bush and Sen. McCain were ready to move heaven and earth to address the crisis on Wall Street, t
he president has failed so far to address the crisis on Main Street, and Sen. McCain has failed to fully acknowledge it," Obama said at a jobs summit his campaign staged in economically precarious and politically significant Florida.

Obama said that McCain's response to the limping economy doesn't offer enough to Americans worried about keeping their jobs, their homes and their lifestyles. Read more...
This was too good not to follow up the other two posts with. I think I need to refer Barry to them. Seems Barney Frank is worried about my job, my home, and my lifestyle, if I have all three he can tax the living hell out of me and keep his spending programs running. If I don't want to pay them Murtha will probably think I am a racist. Oh well.
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What can I say the Three Stooges here are about as fun as a shaving your buddy's eyebrows after he passes out drunk. Well that is it for toady, can't wait to be taxed and spent to death, while being branded a racist, and told I am willfully ignorant cause I want to save money. What a bright future we have!

-CT

"Happy Hunting!"
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Locking up the Free Markets and Throwin' Away the Key.

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CT

Sometimes by looking back on the historical relevance of a past can be a guide or lesson book for the future. You can apply this to the present day economic tragedy and the political state of affairs of 2008 to the environment of 1933. The Wall Street Journal just published an article by Paul H. Rubin, Get Ready for the New New Deal. An intriguing comparison of the FDR administration to a potential Obama administration and how that may not be the right thing for America’s future.
The new president's response was to restructure the economy with the New Deal -- an expansion of the role of government once unimaginable in America. We now know that FDR's policies likely prolonged the Great Depression because the economy never fully recovered in the 1930s, and actually got worse in the latter half of the decade.
Keeping in mind, as rightfully pointed out in the WSJ article, Obama is one of the most Liberal members of Congress. Himself as well as Nancy Pelosi, Herry Reid, and other noted Liberal leaders have all blamed this on de-regulation. How else should we expect them to react other than imposing further directives and possibly even going as far as creating new and more powerful regulatory bodies.
Unlike FDR, Mr. Obama will not have to create the mechanisms government uses to interfere with the economy before imposing his policies. FDR had to get the Supreme Court to overturn a century's worth of precedents limiting the power of government before he could use the Constitution's commerce clause, among other things, to increase government control of the economy. Mr. Obama will have no such problem.
This is the key point, FDR basically had to build this Liberal bastion of regulatory bodies from the ground up. Until this point, the control the government extended over the economy was minimal and that attitude had lasted for the better part of a hundred years, until the Depression. Obama, on the other hand, has sixty-five years or so of regulatory growth and institutions to build upon. With no opposition in Congress the overwhelming size of regulatory bodies and laws he can create would change the landscape of the American economy for generations. I guarantee it will have free marketers going into convulsions just at the mere thought.

Also pointed out early in the WSJ article is the fact that we are not in the crisis that was being experienced in 1933. There is a great deal of potential for it to collapse and go the way of the Depression, but we are not there yet. Unfortunately, Congress and Senator Obama are already planning on trying to spend their way out of this. This is stereotypical Liberal behavior to economic misfortune, throw money at it till it goes away. Stimulus packages will not stimulate anything other than a want by people to get another check from the government.

When it comes to these stimulus packages, I think we forget sometimes that they are a loan that Congress is making to us on our behalf. It has to be paid back sooner or later. I fail to see how incurring more debt will solve any of our current problems. It was carrying to much debt that got us here in the first place, so we want to enable the problem further?

Part of the more successful attitudes that FDR demonstrated during the Depression years was fiscal responsibility. He and those around him made a Herculean attempt to control spending so they could stimulate some growth in the economy. Albeit the increase in manufacturing for WWII is probably the most notable reason we pulled out of the Depression but his fiscal conservatism did play a major role. However, based on the stimulus package approach I do not think we can expect Obama or Congress to adopt this frame of mind. I only hope and pray that someone wakes up and realizes trying to correct one extreme with another usually ends in further disaster.

-CT

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Colin Powell and the Conservative Identity Crisis

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CT

The list of Conservatives jumping ship is growing more and more everyday and to Jacobin glee signaling the death knell of a once great and proud philosophy. The latest victim to “fall to the call” is former Secretary of State Colin Powell. Once upon a time, he was a great bastion of Republican intellectualism and wisdom, an elder statesman and military genius not seen since Patton or Bradley.

This surely should be the sign for us, in the trenches, to give up the fight, move on from our yokel tradition loving philosophy, read Rousseau, cast our lot for Obama, and praise Pelosi as the high priestess and beg her forgiveness.

Not only no, but hell no! This only serves to strengthen the resolve of those who see the folly in the decisions of the great statesman, politicians, and pundits. Whether their reason was the Palin pick, the Bush Presidency, or philosophical values, they are taking the easy road.

If you feel ‘disenfranchised” with the Conservative movement, as many do, tired of its irrationality and its corruption, what are you left to do, divorce yourself from it? No, you make a stand for pragmatic reform where no one else would. That is what being a Conservative is, you don’t defect to the side of your adversary.

What is necessary is a philosophical rebellion against an opponent, both on the Left and Right, who is seeking to take that which we hold dear; the pursuit of liberty for the individual, a balance of the state, and an honest responsibility to our fellow man. This is what spawned our movement, this is what gave life to this great nation, this is the example we should live by.

Amid the Left’s rise to a first world governing hyper-power, Conservatives must become opinionated insurgents. We will have to endure the Left’s sanctimonious quest for political revenge, all the while biting our tongues, being careful not to spew rhetoric. We will have to be patient and resolute, educating ourselves on their mistakes, choosing our battles carefully, refining our movement, and above all else understanding who we are. Some of our most noted names are falling prey to this crisis of identity and look where it has brought them.

-CT


“Happy Hunting!”
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In the News: 19th October 2008

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CT

Interesting day in political news, we have Obama saying that he is going to change the world, lofty goals indeed, 45% of the electorate doesn't buy it for a minute, Colin Powell seems to, and Madame Screecher getting all hot and bothered about Barry.
______________________________________________________________________________________

Barack Obama vows to 'change the world'
By Toby Harnden, Telegraph-The supremely confident demeanor and exalted rhetoric of the Democratic nominee at a New Hampshire event betrayed that he is a man convinced he is poised to make history.

While his Republican opponent John McCain, trailing in the polls, is pursuing a strategy of eking out a victory in traditional swing states, Mr Obama is transferring resources to conservative strongholds like Georgia, West Virginia and even Kentucky in pursuit of a landslide victory.

Speaking in an apple orchard against the picture-perfect New England backdrop of an red, green and yellow autumn foliage on a stage adorned with pumpkins and hay bales, Mr Obama reminded voters of the dangers of hubris. Read more...
Lofty goals indeed. Sorry, I am not buying what ole' Barry is selling. We joke about Liberals being socialists, we know philosophically they are not. Nevertheless, what they seem to not understand is that they have the very Far Left of their party taking charge. That Far Left's arrogance and hubris is demonstrated in statements like this and that is dangerous. I truly do not think Senator Obama knows what he is getting into.
_____________________________________________________________________________________

Obama's lead slips to 3 points
Andrew Quinn, Reuters - Democrat Barack Obama's lead over Republican John McCain in the presidential race has dropped to 3 points, according to a Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby poll released on Sunday.

Obama leads McCain by 48 to 45 percent among likely U.S. voters, down 1 percentage point from Saturday. The four-day tracking poll, which has a margin of error of 2.9 points.

Pollster John Zogby said the numbers were good news for McCain, and probably reflected a bump following his appearance in the third and final presidential debate on Wednesday. Read more...
Seems that a lot of people are not buying that Obama will change the world. If his victory is not a sweeping landslide, it will not be the mandated change people are claiming. Many on the Left are trying to perpetuate the myth that a vast many Americans want Liberal change. I do not buy it. Do they want change? Yes, they do. But this 3-5% of the electorate is not going to get the change they were looking for if Liberals are running everything. Look at what happened when the Republicans got drunk with power. The Liberals will be worse, in my opinion.
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Powell endorses Obama for president
WASHINGTON - Former Secretary of State Colin Powell endorsed Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., for president on Sunday, criticizing his own Republican Party for what he called its narrow focus on irrelevant personal attacks over a serious approach to challenges he called unprecedented.

Powell, who for many years was considered the most likely candidate to become the first African-American president, said in an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that he was not supporting Obama because of his race. He said he had watched both Obama and his Republican opponent, Sen. John McCain of Arizona, for many months and thought “either one of them would be a good president.” Read more...

I still have a great deal of respect for former Secretary of State Powell, as an elder statesmen, a general, and an American. His intellect is far above that of his peers and his wisdom usually sound. However on this one he is drastically wrong. I must remind the Left, before the jump up and down, he was the main reason we went to war in Iraq, remember the UN speech? One is left to wonder if he is not atoning, in his own mind, for what he perceives he did wrong in the Bush administration.
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Pelosi: 100% Barack's Gonna Win
By Jeff Dufour and Patrick Gavin, dcexaminer.com-There are only 15 days left until Election Day, which means that pundits and pols will be busy predicting who will win come November 4.

We caught up with Speaker Nancy Pelosi at Georgetown's Café Milano Friday night and she didn't pull any punches.

"100% Barack Obama is going to win!" she told Yeas & Nays. "He's going to be our next president and a great president at that. We're all excited to work with him."Read more...
If this is not a good enough reason not to vote for Obama then I do not know what is. Anything this nitwit is for I am vehemently against.

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Well that is it for today, it was all Obama all the time today here at PCT. Hope you enjoyed.

-CT

"Happy Hunting!"
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Filibuster May Be Gettin' Busted

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Pundit,



Welcome to the potential world of one party politics. The Liberal Supermajority an article that just appeared on WSJ online, makes a point about the elimination of the filibuster and what you can expect from a hyper-liberal Congress. Let’s look at worse case scenario, the Liberals could pick up anywhere form 12-24 seats in the House, which they already control 235-199. In the Senate, they have the potential at gaining five seats and presently have a 51-49 advantage over the Republicans.

As far as the Senate is concerned, you have to have a 3/5ths majority vote to invoke cloture, or ending the filibuster. If the Liberals obtain the seats they expect to win the numbers in the Senate shift to 56-44. Four votes short, as far as the Democrats are concerned, to be able to invoke cloture at a whim.

Nevertheless, how difficult it to get the necessary four additional votes? Not very. You can dangle an earmark-laden carrot in front of most of the borderline Republicans and they will bite. Therefore, with back door dealings in mind, invoking cloture probably will not be that difficult for the Liberals.

What does this actually mean though? As pointed out in the WSJ article we can probably expect, massive regulation on business, green agendas, higher taxes, free speech infringements, etc. Along with a President Obama, more than happy to sign off on any piece of legislation that passes through Congress.

The only potential possibility I see is for the Republicans to caucus with the Blue Dog Democrats in the House. Even then, only about 47 Representatives who belong to this coalition and they are not even a sure thing.

Now keep in mind this is a worse case scenario and this is based on polling data not reality. However, if this does happen it will be comparable to the 1933 New Deal Democratic revolution minus the fiscal conservatism. With New Deal legislation, it took almost 66 years of political TNT to get rid of it. Guess the Repubs in Congress better start stocking up.

-OmegaPundit



“The last word on everything.”
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Disservice to Joe: Let's not forget what he was trying to find out.

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CT

Populism, although sometimes a worthy goal, can get in the way of the overall objective or message that spurred a movement. Take Joe Wurzelbacher, in an attempt to discredit him the media is scrutinizing his life with a magnifying glass. I am sure they have air lifted reporters to Ohio to see if there is any more dirt, they can dig up on him.

This causes Conservatives and those who share similar philosophies about the natural rights of the individual, to become enraged about the media attacks on a private citizen. It ignited fury in me when I read about it, The Vetting of Joe. As well as many others across the blogoshpere, Make a Difference Today– Help Stop Media Witch Hunt Against Joe the Plumber and His Son, a very noble and worthwhile goal indeed. However, with this populist approach we might be doing a disservice to Joe and his family. While trying to protect his individual rights to free speech we should not forget or overlook the reason this started, taxes and their effects under an Obama administration.

Joe questioned Senator Obama about his plan to tax those who make more than $250,000 a year. This was the Senator’s response, “It's not that I want to punish your success. I just want to make sure that everybody who is behind you, that they've got a chance.'' ``I think when you spread the wealth around it's good for everyone.”

This statement is a look at Obama’s core philosophy on progressive taxation. Obama, in his heart, is an archetypical American Liberal. Simply put, he believes in the power of the state to effect change in the lives of the individual and this requires funding. This is data on the fundamentals of the Obama tax plan, European Levels of Taxation: Barack Obama's Tax Plan .

Real growth is the key to America’s prosperity. Minus the present economic calamity, spurring growth and success in our industrial and service industries versus economic redistribution is key to America’s future, Job Creation from the Obama and McCain Tax Plans: A State-by-State Analysis. This is also the answer to surviving the Subprime Bust. Obama does not support any measures that I can see that are “progressive” to the economic state of this country, they are “regressive” in nature.

This is what Joe Wurzelbacher showed us and this is what you need to be considering when you cast your vote. The populist movement to protect the central rights of an individual’s free speech is highly admirable. Joe deserves our support and accolades, but do not forget what he was trying to investigate.

-CT

“Happy Hunting!”
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The Vetting of Joe the Plumber?

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CT

Looks like a lonely plumber started a little bit of a firestorm with Camp Obama and the media. Why does he need to be “vetted?” Am I missing something in all of this, is he running for political office, is he being considered for the Supreme Court, or a high ranking cabinet position in a McCain administration? This person asked a question to a candidate trying to be an informed voter. He is the one who needs to be doing the vetting and that is exactly what Joe did.

But you see in the world of the Obamitrons to question the collective will get you destroyed. You will be made repentant at the altar by the high priests of the media in this new order of things.

The AP just put out an article: Is 'Joe the Plumber' a plumber? That's debatable.
HOLLAND, Ohio – Joe the Plumber's story sprang a few leaks Thursday. Turns out that the man who was held up by John McCain as the typical, hard-working American taxpayer isn't really a licensed plumber. And court documents show he owes nearly $1,200 in back taxes.
Okay and I owed a small amount of back taxes when I was younger, I have a less than perfect credit history, I got non-judicial punishment in the military once, I worked as land surveyor but was never licensed. So what, because of all this I cannot ask a question? I had better keep my mouth shut or all my dirty laundry will be aired across the Internet and television? This is the future that we can expect under an Obama administration, one where he will let the media do his dirty work for him. Humiliation can be a wonderful disciplinary tool, it is great for keeping people who are conforming to polite society in check. But it only works for so long before people start not caring.

But the next question is who is vetting the media? Who is fact checking the fact checkers? What do they have to hide? I see no checks and balances in place for the media, nothing to offset their incredulous and corrupt world. It is demanded of candidates and now demanded of you and I, so why not them? However, if you try it, there will be righteous indignation and cries about freedom of the press.

This pack of buzzards we call the media has not one ounce of integrity or decency. They are left wing zealots who have no problem taking on the mission of destroying a private citizen because he questioned their messiah. What world do these people live in? Do they have a grasp on reality or are they all mentally ill? I am truthfully questioning their sanity in even bothering to report that this man has no plumbing license and owes some back taxes. Why are they frightened?

Wurzelbacher, to anyone who still has a mind left, did nothing wrong, his question does not correspond to the script, that was his sin. He made an inquiry about Obama’s plan that caused him to flub and that revealed his true nature. In the far left liberal ethos there is no room for this, it is the biggest roadblock for egalitarianism. This why Joe has to be vetted, because he is obviously not a good little Progressive robot. Here is a new idea, let's vet Obama, does he have something in his past we should be concerned about?

Good luck Joe, I wish I could do more for you.

-CT

"Happy Hunting!"
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Subprime Questions, We Are All Confused

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CT

Recently I had a visit from a gentleman named, Chris. Chris seems to be left leaning and runs a fairly informative website on health care issues. If you are interested here is his link, Single-Payer Healthcare Blog. But Chris's political viewpoints are not the topic. He asked some very poignant questions about the Community Reinvestment Act in a polite post and was curious about obtaining some data. Here is Chris's post.
Thanks for this post. It clarifies a few things for me as information has been hard to find.

Regarding "a massive liberal community giveaway program. The regulations forced on these institutions, along with their greed, gave rise to the Sub Prime Bubble."

Are you aware of any data indicating why this is a "giveaway". Weren't these mortgage and business loans?

And are you aware of what was "forced" on the institutions? My understanding was that they were forced to consider underserved areas (i.e., no more redlining) but what else were they forced to do? It seems there were lots of people sounding alarms, but not that low income people were seeking loans they couldn't afford, but that lenders were sucking people into loans they shouldn't get. Hence, the push back against predatory lending in some states.

Any information you can provide would be appreciated!
I liked his approach so much that I figured a post would be the best way to answer his questions.

1) Are you aware of any data indicating why this is a "giveaway". Weren't these mortgage and business loans?

Is it a giveaway or entitlement program? Giveaway, no, Chris caught me on a semantic of poor verbiage. Entitlement, yes. Look at the definition of entitlement from Merriam-Webster online:
1 a: the state or condition of being entitled : right b: a right to benefits specified especially by law or contract

2
: a government program providing benefits to members of a specified group ; also : funds supporting or distributed by such a program

3
: belief that one is deserving of or entitled to certain privileges
But that was never my gripe, nor do I blame CRA loans or Community Development Financial Institutions, my major argument is that the CRA being paired with the FSMA is what set things into motion. Susan White Haag of the Brookings Institute wrote a very informative paper called COMMUNITY REINVESTMENT AND CITIES: A LITERATURE REVIEW OF CRA’S IMPACT AND FUTURE. Here is an excerpt from pg 33.
However, the literature reflects the mainstream secondary mortgage market becoming increasingly responsive to low income housing and community development needs in recent years, driven in part by the impetus of the Federal Housing Enterprises Financial Safety and Soundness Act of 1992, which required HUD to set annual affordable loan-purchase targets for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac; but also by demand for products that can satisfy the investment test compliance criteria.22 Thus, secondary market products, such as mortgage-backed securities and other instruments backed by affordable housing and community development loans, that provide a source of investment test credit at the same time promote the liquidity of the secondary market for the CRA loans that underlie the instruments. Thus, the revised CRA regulations are helping to foster increased secondary market activity by supporting both sides of the secondary market equation.
It did not work, this is what allowed Wall Street to come along and further abuse subprime loans due to the increased distribution form 1998-2006. If you need a visual on the rise of subprime distribution through those years please refer to An Obama Fact Check, Sub Prime Finger Pointing.

Chris's second question was about predatory lending. I personally have found no data on the statistics of predatory lending practices in regards to the subprime bust. But I can say that there was malfeasance on the part of mortgage companies and underwriters by misrepresenting the credit history of individuals seeking housing loans. How many exactly I do not know, but it is definitely part of the problem.

But the other part is the individuals seeking the housing loans, they bear a responsibility in this also. A person knows how much they can afford and how much they cannot. I understand the desperation in wanting your own home especially as low as home prices and interest rates were at the height of the bubble. It does not relinquish them of their responsibility either. One of the actual government intervention policies I am in favor of is raising credit standards, it might just force Americans to start saving instead of living off of credit. As far as banks being forced to comply with CRA regulations again refer to any number of posts I have written on the topic, look for labels with Financial Services Modernization Act, Financial Modernization Act ,subprime crisis, subprime mortgage, Glass-Steagall, or Gramm. These writes get repetitive and exhausting.

There a few things I would like to add to the end of this. The first, I actually came across the information about the CRA on September 15th and posted about it on September 16th. The only reason I am saying this is not to pat myself on the back or say I am ahead of the power curve. It is to show that I did not come across this because some partisan wonk wrote an article blaming just the CRA and I ran with it. That reasoning is to simplistic, as is the blame on deregulation. I actually did a little research and drew my own conclusions. If I can anyone can, I am no smarter or better educated than anyone out there, you have to be willing to get the information and look beyond partisan politics sometimes. Lastly, I would like to thank Chris for being decent and asking some great questions. This is why we need discourse, it keeps us honest.

-CT

"Happy Hunting!"
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QUESTIONING ACORN?!?!? You are a racist!!

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Pundit,




Ezra Klein over at the American Prospect, formerly, one of my favorite Left wing commentators, has succumbed to his own blog statement of “Momma Said Wonk You Out.” Klein is definitely wonked out in the worst of ways and is losing credibility fast. In his latest post, The Voter Fraud Fraud, Klein runs a blind gambit that poor little ACORN is falling prey to the big vast right wing conspiracy. He offers up a severely botchalized helping of Art Levine as his inspiration to this absurd conclusion. All this despite the monstrous amount of information to the contrary.

These two excerpts are from Levine’s article, which Klein presented on his blog, and he wasted not time in going form 0 to stupid.
Voter fraud is actually less likely to occur than lightning striking a person, according to data compiled by New York University's Brennan Center for Justice.

Yet even after the Justice Department declared the war against voter fraud a "high priority," only 24 people were convicted of illegal voting in federal elections between 2002 and 2005 -- and nobody was even charged by Justice with impersonating another voter.
Absolutely, because ACORN is not involved voter fraud it is into what you call voter registration fraud. Voter fraud is not the issue; it is voter registration fraud or election fraud whatever you want to call it this week. Nice play on semantics eh? Well here are some convictions and indictments tied directly to ACORN for “voter registration fraud.”
  • In the state of Missouri in 1986, 12 ACORN members were convicted of voter fraud.
  • AR 1998-A contractor with ACORN-affiliated Project Vote was arrested for falsifying about 400 voter registration cards.
  • MN 2004-During a traffic stop, police found more than 300 voter registration cards in the trunk of a former ACORN employee, who had violated a legal requirements that registration cards be submitted to the Secretary of State within 10 days of being filled out and signed.
  • In Ohio in 2004, four ACORN employees were indicted by a federal grand jury for submitting false voter registration forms.
  • In January 2005 two Colorado ACORN workers were sentenced to community service for submitting false voter registrations.
  • OH 2007-A man in Reynoldsburg was indicted on two felony counts of illegal voting and false registration, after being registered by ACORN to vote in two separate counties.
  • 2007, in Kansas City, Missouri, four ACORN employees were indicted for fraud.
  • Five ACORN employees were convicted and imprisoned in Washington State, in 2007.
  • PA 2008-An ACORN employee in West Reading, PA, was sentenced to up to 23 months in prison for identity theft and tampering with records. A second ACORN worker pleaded not guilty to the same charges and is free on $10,000 bail.
  • In April of this year eight ACORN employees in St. Louis city and county pleaded guilty to federal election fraud for submitting bogus voter registrations.
  • ACORN (Itself) is currently under investigation for fraudulent voter registration and related activities in at least 11 key battleground states.
But you better ignore all this cause Ezra has a warning for you,
In other words, when it comes to this ACORN stuff, there's nothing new under the sun. It's just that Republicans are more desperate, and more likely to lose, and there's more potential in stoking racial resentment and fear when the Democratic candidate is black, and so they're spending more time on it.
Yup, nothing new under the sun at all, ACORN is still as corrupt as it has always been. But you are a racist if you question what they are doing. Here is a little advice to Ezra and Art, where there is smoke there is usually a fire and ACORN is blazing.

None of this has anything to do with a Bush Justice Department, McCain claiming the election is being stolen from him, or a vast right wing conspiracy. It is about local voting official’s dong their jobs and reporting their findings to the proper authorities and years of allegations that have finally caught up with ACORN.

I would expect much better of the Left with their postulating about protecting voter’s rights. Aren’t they the group who was bitching and griping about hanging chads, phone jamming, and Rovian plans for massive vote tampering? Weren’t they leading the battle cry about the disenfranchisement of voters in 2000, swearing up and down Bush stole the election? I guess I am expecting to much from political infants.

-OmegaPundit


“The last word on everything.”
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Firedoglake and Huffington are huffin' some BS when it comes to the CRA

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CT

While out cruisin' the socialist slums of the blog world, I came across an ever growing favorite of mine, Firedoglake. Seems the burnin' doggies want to tackle the CRA meme and try and spin it is as a "racist" maneuver. Of course this was done by rich whitey to cover his/her wealthy arse and blame our brown and down brothers and sisters.

FDL linked up to the Huffington Post to make the case about how the CRA only extends to small banks and thrifts. And the amount of CRA loans had nothing to do with the increasing in subprime loans. Back on to topic.

Phoenix Woman from FDL displays her obvious party wonkism and ignorance on the topic,
If the GOP's bogus arguments sound familiar, it's because they used the same easily-debunked nonsense to try and blame the current crisis on the 1977 Community Reinvestment Act (because it allegedly forced nice upstanding bankers to give money to black people! Quelle horreur!) -- even though the vast majority of the bad loans out there had nothing to do with the CRA.
Hmmm, how could the vast majority of the CRA loans have nothing to with the bad subprime loans? The CRA is what brought them into existence. Using there own cited sources (i.e. Wikipedia, Community Reinvestment Act) look at the definition.
The CRA mandates that all banking institutions that receive FDIC insurance be evaluated by the relevant banking regulatory agencies to determine if the institution has met the credit needs of its entire community in a manner consistent with safe and sound operations.
This means that loans had to be made to low income individuals who would not have otherwise qualified for home loans and these loans were labeled "subprime" due to the relative risk involved with their issuance. There is some truth in saying that the whole economic crash was not caused by CRA specific loans, it was caused by subprime loans. Most of them were issued because of regulatory requirements of the CRA amendments to the Financial Services Modernization Act, others just because of greed. In effect its pairing with the FSMA opened the door for a larger subprime market. So the CRA does have a little something to do with subprime bust.

Enter Phil Gramm arch super villain at large,
The reason the Republicans are dipping into the race-baiting barrel once again isn't just because it's their favorite thing to do. It's because they have to hide their lead role in ripping out all the finance-industry laws that had saved America from stock market meltdowns during the latter half of the last century. Phil Gramm, John McCain's go-to guy for financial wisdom, is the lead villain of the piece, as he successfully pushed to kill the Glass-Steagall Act that had kept us and our money safe for so many decades.
Now this raises two points about Phoenix Woman's ignorance. First, Gramm did not do away with Glass Steagall, it was well on its way out, The Long Demise of Glass-Steagall. His was the final bullet to its head but it was already done and as far as protections it was withering on the vine. So to characterize Phil Gramm as the architect of its destruction is quite disengenious. Secondly in order to get the Financial Service Modernization Act passed he had to compromise with Clinton by adding CRA amendments to the FSMA which severely empowered the CRA therby assisting in putting us in this mess. This brings me to the Huffington Post article Hale "Bonddad" Stewart's article, Memo to Republicans: CRA Has To Do With the Current Problems. Actually it does.

His first stultifying assessment,
There are two huge problems with this analysis. The first one alone should dismiss this claim as a farce. The CRA was signed into law in 1977 -- almost 30 years ago. So, what do you think the possibilities of a law passed 30 years ago causing the lending problems now?
Huh? So by Stewart's logic, Phoenix Woman's statement that Glass Steagall has been protecting our money is irellevant becuase it was passed in 1933. This is one of the most comical arguments the Left has.

Second one,
But wait -- Clinton changed the law That was the real problem No it wasn't, regarding those changes:
But half correct, it was his forced compromise with Gramm that empowered the CRA even more and extended its reach.

Third one,
But here's the real kicker. The Community Reinvestment Act only applies to banks and thrifts:
This is true if we were still living prior to 1999. This is an excerpt taken from US Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs website concerning Gramm, Leach, Bliley of 1999.
The Federal Reserve may not permit a company to form a financial holding company if any of its banks or S&Ls did not receive at least a satisfactory rating in its most recent CRA exam.

No bank or financial holding company may commence new activities authorized under the Gramm-Leach Act if any bank, or bank affiliate of a financial holding company, received less than satisfactory rating at its most recent CRA exam.
Meaning if a financial institution(i.e. insurance company, annuity, bank, mortgage holder, etc.) did not comply with the CRA requirements of subprime loans then they would not be allow to merge with another institution. The point that was lost on Firedoglake and Huffington, was not the amount of the CRA specific loans, but the regulatory requirements imposed on the FSMA created an even larger market for the issuance of subprime loans. A market and regulation that Wall Street was more than happy to exploit. Now, don't misunderstand me, I am not implying that Wall Street was a victim of the big bad regulation loving Dems either. Believe they have their fare share of blame in all of this, probably the most.

In synopsis, the CRA was not the only mitigating factor to the subprime bust, but it definitely helped. The rigorous attempts by both sides to paint the other in such a bad light is further proof that they both had their fingers in this pie. Blame lies in four places, Democrats, Republicans, Wall Street, and people who could not pay their bills. Concerning the last group, it is utterly ridiculous for Liberals to paint the Republicans as racist for claiming it was all the CRA. As it is just as ridiculous for the Republicans to blame everything on the CRA. People, who do not or cannot pay their bills are not confined just to one color; there are brown ones, red ones, white ones, yellow ones and even some rich ones. Its about time we all faced the music and realize this all our fault, it will be the only way any of us can help correct it.

-CT

"Happy Hunting!"
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In the News: 13th-14th October, 2008

1 comments
CT

____________________________________________________________________________________

Dow jumps 936 as governments pledge bank aid

By Tim Paradis, AP Business Writer,NEW YORK (AP- Wall Street stormed back from last week's devastating losses Monday, sending the Dow Jones industrials soaring a nearly inconceivable 936 points after major governments' plans to support the global banking system reassured distraught investors. All the major indexes rose more than 11 percent.

The market was expected to rebound after eight days of precipitous losses that took the Dow down nearly 2,400 points, but few expected this kind of advance, which saw the Dow by far outstrip its previous record one-day point gain, 499.19, set during the waning days of the dot-com boom. The Standard & Poor's 500 index also set a record for a one-day point gains. Read more...
Seems our banks are reveling in a socialist run on the finance system. Although some of this is needed, the end result of government intermingling with finance is probably here to stay.
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Bush, Berlusconi vow cooperation on crisis

AP, via Breibart.com-Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said Monday that US President George W. Bush hoped for a meeting of Group of Eight rich country leaders on the financial crisis "in the next few weeks."

Du
ring a joint public appearance at the White House, Bush stressed the need for coordinated US-Europe action to calm markets but did not mention such a summit, while the White House denied any specific plans for G8 talks.

"These
are tough times," said the US president. "People all over the world are understandably concerned about the global financial crisis and about how it will affect their families and their businesses." Read more...
Note to self, if you ever go to the proctologist and he has both hands on your shoulders like the President does on Berlusconi's shoulders, it's BOHICA (Bend Over Here It Comes Again) time. Guess he was demonstrating what the federal government is doing to the American taxpayer.
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Congressman says McCain 'sowing seeds of hatred'

WASHINGTON (AP) - Rep. John Lewis, a Georgia Democrat and veteran of the civil rights movement, says the negative tone of the Republican presidential campaign reminds him of the hateful atmosphere that segregationist Gov. George Wallace fostered in Alabama in the 1960s.

Republican candidate John McCain on Saturday called Lewis' remarks "shocking and beyond the pale."

The Obama campaign said the Illinois senator doesn't believe McCain or his policy criticism is at all comparable to Wallace and his segregationist policies.

In a statement issued Saturday, Lewis said McCain and running mate Sarah Palin were "sowing the seeds of hatred and division, and there is no need for this hostility in our political discourse." He noted that Wallace also ran for president. Read more...
Lol, that is all I have to say on that one.
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Burning McCain campaign sign lands men in hot water

The Portland Tribune-The presidential campaign got a little too hot for two Portland men who were arrested early Saturday morning, Oct. 11, and charged with burning a large John McCain campaign sign outside a Southeast Portland home.

Portland Fire and Rescue investigators said the two men made a Molotov cocktail and threw it at the sign in the 7900 block of Southeast 17th Avenue. Read more...

Yeah and McCain and the Republicans are sowing the seeds of hatred. And please don't give me that garbage that this backlash from the way McCain is campaigning. This another example of typical Leftist infantile bullshit.
____________________________________________________________________________________

-CT

"Happy Hunting!"

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