April 16, 2011

AFP Pic Caption, Video Description: ‘Tea Party Radicals Rally on Tax Day’

A photo taken at a Tea Party demonstration in Boston carried at Yahoo News carries the following caption (HT Powerline):

VIDEO: April 15 was tax day in the United States, and Tea Party radicals used it to stage demonstrations across the country, including near the site of the original Boston Tea Party revolt of the colonial era.

The photo was grabbed from an Agency France-Presse video with an identical description. The pic and caption follow the jump:


Mark Levin Tees Off on Trump …

Filed under: Health Care,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 10:54 am

… and proves that the man cannot be taken seriously as a presidential candidate (Levin site link; YouTube).

Excerpts and points (just a sample):

  • Levin — “Did he (Trump) go to a single rally? Did he contribute to a single Tea Party cause?”
  • (He’s given money to) Chuckie Schumer, Anthony Weiner, and Charlie Crist.
  • “I don’t see any contributions to Marco Rubio … he bet against Rubio twice.”
  • He gave $2,400 to Friends of Harry Reid.
  • But Trump says, “This is what a businessman does.” Levin: “What does a businessman do? Make unprincipled contributions to some of the most left-wing losers in the nation who are undermining our country? This is the new Tea Party candidate?”
  • Trump wrote in his 2000 book — “We must have universal health care.”
  • Trump wanted to impeach Bush for “lies” about the war in Iraq, calling him “so incompetent, bad and evil.”
  • Now he’s saying that Obama is now the worst president ever, and that Carter is number two. Huh?

No sensible conservative can accept this. Trump is fundamentally unserious, and potentially very dangerous.


UPDATE: See the contributions for yourself.

UPDATE 2, April 17: Heaven help us, Trump’s another guy claiming a pro-life conversion — and, unlike Mitt Romney, he’s smart enough not to leave any easily traceable tracks.

Obama Channels Nixon: You Can’t Legislate My Czars Away, Because I Am the President (Updates: Vid of Obama Signing-Statement Promise, and RWR Considers Impeachability)

Filed under: Taxes & Government — Tom @ 9:55 am

Via Jake Tapper (HT Althouse via Instapundit; internal link is in original; bolds are mine):

President Obama Issues “Signing Statement” Indicating He Won’t Abide by Provision in Budget Bill

One rider – Section 2262 — de-funds certain White House adviser positions – or “czars.” The president in his signing statement declares that he will not abide by it.

“The President has well-established authority to supervise and oversee the executive branch, and to obtain advice in furtherance of this supervisory authority,” he wrote. “The President also has the prerogative to obtain advice that will assist him in carrying out his constitutional responsibilities, and do so not only from executive branch officials and employees outside the White House, but also from advisers within it. Legislative efforts that significantly impede the President’s ability to exercise his supervisory and coordinating authorities or to obtain the views of the appropriate senior advisers violate the separation of powers by undermining the President’s ability to exercise his constitutional responsibilities and take care that the laws be faithfully executed.”

Therefore, the president wrote, “the executive branch will construe section 2262 not to abrogate these Presidential prerogatives.”

In other words: we know what you wanted that provision to do, but we don’t think it’s constitutional, so we will interpret it differently than the way you meant it.

During his presidential campaign, then-Senator Obama was quite critical of the Bush administration’s uses of signing statements telling the Boston Globe in 2007 that the “problem” with the Bush administration “is that it has attached signing statements to legislation in an effort to change the meaning of the legislation, to avoid enforcing certain provisions of the legislation that the President does not like, and to raise implausible or dubious constitutional objections to the legislation.”

Then-Sen. Obama said he would “not use signing statements to nullify or undermine congressional instructions as enacted into law.”

Maybe somebody has an answer to this: If Congress has truly de-funded the czar positions, how is the Executive Branch going to pay them? With Bernanke bucks?


UPDATE: Via Rhymes with Right answers the previous question, and has more —


Good points. Generally hard to argue, though one would need to come up with more offenses to meet the plural standard in “misdemeanors.” Maybe each decision to cut an unauthorized check or send an unauthorized bank draft would represent an individual misdemeanor.

If this were Nixon or any other Republican or conservative president, these and other matters relating to the “signing statement” would have been hammered in the press for the remainder of the president’s time in office.


UPDATE 2: Obama’s direct promise in answering a campaign question on signing statements in 2008 (HT to an e-mailer) —

The key statement, beginning at 0:50, criticizing George W. Bush’s use of signing statements and promising that he won’t use them:

He’s been saying, “Well, I can basically change what Congress passed by attaching a letter saying ‘I don’t agree with this part’ or ‘I don’t agree with that part’ (or) ‘I’m going to choose to interpret it this way or that way.’”

That’s not part of his power. But this is part of the whole theory of George Bush that he can make laws as he’s goin’ along. I disagree with that. I taught the Constitution for ten years. I believe in the Constitution, and I will obey the Constitution of the United States. We’re not going to use signing statements as a way of doing an end-run around Congress.

It’s as obvious a promise-break as you’ll ever see.

Positivity: Maine student born without hands honored for penmanship

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 6:57 am

From Readfield, Maine (HT Daryn Kagan; “How dare you feel sorry for yourself” videos are at link):

April 7, 2011 6:26 a.m. EDT

Born without hands and lower arms, fifth-grader Nicholas Maxim received a unique award Monday for his participation in Zaner-Bloser’s 20th annual National Handwriting Contest.

“We submitted his entry because we felt his penmanship was amazing considering he completes most of his work without using his prostheses,” said Cheryl Hasenfus, Readfield Elementary School principal.

At those times, Nicholas writes by holding a pen or pencil between his upper arms.

On behalf of Zaner-Bloser, a publisher of educational materials, Hasenfus presented a trophy to Nicholas during a school assembly for his excellent penmanship. The school is in Readfield, Maine.

Inspired by his ability, Zaner-Bloser decided to create a new award category in his honor: Nicholas Maxim Special Award for Excellent Penmanship.

“When our team saw Nicholas’ handwriting, we were just amazed,” said Zaner-Bloser President Bob Page. “Since we started this contest 20 years ago, we’ve been pleased to get a great response that increases every year, and Nicholas inspired us to encourage all students to participate.” …

Go here for the rest of the story.