March 30, 2011

30 Years Ago, Some Children Cheered Reagan Assassination Attempt

As a reminder that leftists have been poisoning the wells of civility and basic human decency for a very, very long time, I present these two items from the Associated Press and United Press International on April 1 and 2, 1981, respectively:

  • Via AP, dateline Tulsa — “Teachers Stunned as Children Cheer Reagan Shooting”
  • More generalized coverage from UPI — “Children Cheer News President Was Shot”

Details are after the jump.

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ADP: Private Sector Added 201,000 Jobs in March; What Was Reagan’s Number?

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 1:11 pm

Continued decent news from ADP:

Private-sector employment increased by 201,000 from February to March on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to the latest ADP National Employment Report® released today. The estimated change of employment from January 2011 to February 2011 was revised down to 208,000 from the previously reported increase of 217,000. This month’s ADP National Employment Report removes any remaining doubt that private nonfarm payroll employment accelerated heading into 2011. The increase of 201,000 is in line with the consensus expectation both for today’s report and for Friday’s jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

That’s nice, and it beats the heck out of what we were seeing throughout 2009 and 2010.

But how was the economy under Ronald Reagan doing at a similar point?

Much better:

ReaganVsObamaJobs21mos

In June 1984, the 21st month after the 1980s recession ended, the economy under Ronald Reagan added 355,000 private-sector jobs. Population-adjusted with some tempering for aging demographics, that would be the same as adding about 420,000 jobs today. Additionally, the Reaganomics number brought that era’s 21-month total of private-sector jobs added to 5,086,000; population- and demographics-adjusted, that would be the same as adding about 6.5 million jobs today.

In the 20 post-recession months from July 2009 to February 2011 under Obamanomics, the economy has added 362,000 private-sector jobs — and that’s if future comprehensive revisions don’t knock the number down by a few hundred thousand or so, as has been the case during each of the past two years (for all jobs, 378,000 in February 2011; 902,000 a year earlier).

Thus, while it will be somewhat welcome news if the Bureau of Labor Statistics tells us on Friday that the economy added about 200,000 jobs in the private sector, in historical context it will not in any way, shape, or form represent an impressive result — not even if it’s 300,000.

Illinois’ Arrogant, Ignorant Governor

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 10:22 am

To say that Illinois Governor Pat Quinn doesn’t get it fails to describe the depth of the man’s ignorance.

Here’s a recent statement he made about the possibility that one of the state’s marquee employers might leave the state — a statement which, after brief news search, I could only find in a Tuesday evening Investors Business Daily editorial:

Caterpillar is not leaving Illinois. They have well-skilled workers who know how to get the job done. They just signed an agreement with the United Auto Workers, I think for six years. I don’t think we should get in a panic at all.”

Even if Cat keeps its headquarters in Peoria and doesn’t reduce its existing Illinois blue- or white-collar workforce, it will be a hollow victory. Earth to Quinn: it isn’t just about keeping what you have, which Illinois is barely doing — maybe. It’s about capturing the new facilities growing companies like Cat build.

On that front, as Rich Miller at Capitol Fax details, Illinois has missed out on the following recent Caterpillar expansions, most if not all of which might have been reasonable prospects for the state if it didn’t have such a punishing business climate made worse recently by additional income tax hikes:

* Dec 18, 2008: Cat announces new plant in Texas …
* January 5, 2009: Caterpillar plant, 600 jobs bound for North Little Rock
* Jul 30, 2010: Cat announces new North Carolina plant – 850,000-square-foot facility will be used for axle assemblies
* October, 2010: Caterpillar Selects Victoria, TX, For New Hydraulic Excavator Facility

If an Illinois-based company like Caterpillar won’t even think about expanding in Illinois, it’s reasonable to believe that other Illinois-based companies are acting similarly, and that few out-of-state companies looking to expand are giving Illinois serious consideration.

The IBD editorial elaborates further, reminding the governor that the company didn’t just spring up out of the Illinois cornfields:

According to the nonpartisan Tax Foundation: “The (Illinois) corporate income tax will rise from 7.3% to 10.9%, a 49% increase and (making Illinois’) the highest state corporate income tax in the United States and the highest combined national-local corporate income tax in the industrialized world.”

In other words, anyplace Caterpillar moves — and that means anywhere — the tax situation will be an improvement on what it faces in Illinois.

Before he pooh-poohs the possibility of losing Caterpillar, Gov. Quinn might review the company’s history. Cat got its start not in Illinois, but in California in 1883 as the Stockton Wheel Co. After various incarnations and acquisitions through much of the 20th century, it became Caterpillar.

In 1967, the company moved its headquarters from Stockton to Peoria, where it now employs 23,000 of the 100,000 workers who make those gigantic yellow construction and mining machines that are among the best in the world, if not the best.

… Until the governor recognizes that businesses operate on real-world accounting, not the government’s big-tax approach to business, he’s looking at the migration of not only Caterpillar, but other big home-based enterprises — State Farm maybe, or McDonald’s — to states where entrepreneurs and world-class companies are treated as precious resources, not strip-mined for taxes to pay for unsustainable and inefficient government.

Caterpillar, of course, is lucky. It can move. Unfortunately, small towns that rely on business with Caterpillar workers will go under. So will many small businesses that aren’t able to move after such tax hikes.

If Quinn doesn’t think Caterpillar has given him reason to panic, he’d better think again.

Pat Quinn will not recognize that people — and companies — can and do vote with their feet. Caterpillar did so when it planted its headquarters in Illinois 44 years ago. It can do so again. So can other Illinois companies.

Positivity: Despite controversy in NYC, pro-life billboards coming to Chicago

Filed under: Life-Based News,Positivity — Tom @ 9:20 am

Chicago_Leader_billboard_CNA_US_Catholic_News_3_28_11From Austin, Texas:

Mar 29, 2011 / 06:15 am

A pro-life group plans to continue their billboard campaign in Chicago after a recent ad was pulled in New York City following complaints.

Life Always, the organization behind ads claiming the abortion industry targets America’s black community, will launch a new billboard in Chicago on March 29, featuring an image of President Obama.

The billboard reads: “Every 21 minutes, our next possible leader is aborted.” In the ad, President Obama is shown next to the word “leader,” and viewers are also directed to visit thatsabortion.com.

“Our hope at Life Always is to call attention to the devastation that abortion is causing in America,” Marissa Gabrysch, group spokeswoman, told CNA March 28.

“By using a likeness of our President, we hope to draw attention to the fact that our next generation of leaders is in jeopardy because of abortion,” Gabrysch said.

The organization says it plans to unveil over 30 billboards in South Chicago to draw attention to the disproportionate number of abortions among African Americans in the U.S. Life Always cites Census data and Center for Disease Control reports which show that although African Americans comprise less than 13 percent of the population, they account for 36 percent of the entire country’s abortions.

The plans to launch the Chicago ads follow the removal of the group’s prominent billboard in New York City. A 29 feet high and 16 feet wide billboard – unveiled on Feb. 22 and taken down within days – depicted a young black girl beneath the phrase “The most dangerous place for an African American is in the womb.”

“The New York billboard generated strong reactions, which was the goal,” Gabrysch said. “We all need to react.”

Pete Costanza, the general manager for Lamar Advertising, said the billboard was removed because an objector to the billboard harassed the waiters and waitresses in the Mexican restaurant below the sign.

The restaurant has no affiliation with the billboard company or the pro-life group.

Dr. Alveda King – niece of civil rights legend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. – told CNA that despite being removed, the New York billboard “opened up dialogue across the country.”

“I’ve been able to have many conversations since the billboard went up and came right back down,” she said, “about how African American women and their children are victims and how we have been targeted by genocide.” …

Go here for the rest of the story.