December 27, 2011

Hugh Hewitt States Why Everyone Who Votes For Mitt Romney Has a Big Problem …

Filed under: Taxes & Government — Tom @ 7:11 pm

… whether they know it or not — and that includes you, Hugh.

In the course of telling us why in his view no one can defensibly vote for Ron Paul, Hewitt lets out the following zinger:

When you vote for a candidate, you vote for all of his or her positions. You accept the moral responsibility for the working out of their platform in practice.

Assuming you’re not in a true lesser of two evils situation, Hugh is of course exactly right. But we are not in a lesser of two evils situation. There are several acceptable candidates in the field. Their names are not Ron Paul or Mitt Romney. I’ll let others take care of Ron Paul. Leave the Mittster to yours truly.

Have some ketchup and other condiments available, Hugh. We’re going to make you and every supporter of Mitt Romney eat those words in the next several days.

Mmm.

Latest PJ Media Column (‘Is the Obama Administration Politically Manipulating the Poverty Data?’) Is Up

It’s here.

It will go up here at BizzyBlog on Thursday (link won’t work until then) after the blackout expires.

The column shows how the Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM), new yardstick for determining how many Americans are living in poverty and how many are “low income.” It’s the same one reported by the Associated Press earlier in the month as telling readers that 1 in 2 Americans is either poor or low income (the methodology used by the Census Bureau for the past half-century shows that it’s 1 in 3). SPM has the potential to be used to help Barack Obama get reelected, and to make ObamaCare artificially look like a success in its early years; the column demonstrates how.

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Mickey Kaus at the Daily Caller commented on the same subject matter yesterday (link in original):

More “New Poverty” Abuse

… What the AP actually discovered was that by changing the poverty line to this new more expansive measure–a measure, in part, of income inequality and not absolute poverty–the Census Bureau can now bring 146 million people–almost half the U.S. population–under 200% of the (new) poverty line (versus a mere 104 million using the traditional poverty line).

Besides the political manipulations described in my column there, there is also the potential for SPM to become the basis for determining eligibility for certain (or eventually all?) for federal welfare, entitlement, higher education, and other benefits, thereby further increasing dependency. Such a move might be doable by bureaucratic or presidential fiat without the messiness involved in, y’know, passing real legislation.

Tuesday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (122711)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:30 am

Rules are here. Possible comment fodder follows. Other topics are also fair game.

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James Pethokoukis identifies “The 7 most illuminating economic charts of 2011.” Yep, this baby is still Number One:

UnempChartStimVsRealityToNov11

Go see the others, especially the last.

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14 years in the making“Two UAW officials sentenced to prison for strike-related extortion.” The story: “… the two former United Auto Workers officials agreed to end an 87-day strike at a GM plant in Pontiac, MI back in 1997 – but only after General Motors agreed to hire Campbell’s son and the son of another UAW official for high-paying jobs they were evidently not qualified for.”

I want to know who paid for their decade-plus defense. I sure hope it wasn’t the UAW or the union’s legal services plan, but I’m guessing it was one or the other.

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This (HT PJ Media) is a really long read, and yes, it’s an “advertorial.” But it makes a lot of important, easily verifiable points, especially in its section about the utter failures of Detroit during the past 50 years (“How Socialism Came to America … and Destroyed Detroit”).

The link’s Detroit recitation leads to a question, which I believe is every bit as relevant to several other U.S. cities as it is to Detroit, two of them (there are several others) being Cleveland and Baltimore. The question is this:

In the history of the human race — not just the history of the U.S., but in the history of the entire human race — has any nation’s government at all levels anywhere in the world taken so many decades of consciously chosen steps which have led to such huge depopulations (Detroit, 61% in 60 years; Cleveland, 56% in 60 years; Baltimore, 34% in 50 years) while leaving behind such serious ruin? If so, name one.

Memo to lefties: If you can’t (and I doubt you can), these and other cities stand as unique monuments in the history of the human race to the failure of big-government, paternalistic, largely union-driven, dependency-creating, civic bankrupticy-causing socialism.

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Here is more evidence (as if we need it) of the Obama White House’s boorishness, even toward people who are overwhelmingly on their side (“Journalists complain the White House press office has become overly combative”; HT The Blaze).

Among the lowlights:

  • “a screaming, profane diatribe that lasted two or three phone calls …”
  • “National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor, reacting to comments (Politico reporter Julie) Mason made in a TV discussion, sent her an e-mail that included an animated picture of a crying mime — a visual suggestion that she was whining.”
  • “they either favor you or try to punish you, depending if they see you as friend or foe.”
  • “They don’t seem to realize or care that [e-mails sent from the White House] will become part of the official archives of the presidency.”

Thanks to that lack of care, history will show that this White House was an immature collection of punks — imitating their leader.

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Predictions are that December will be a very good month for car sales — “New-vehicle retail sales in December are projected to come in at 1,033,700 — the first time retail sales will top 1 million since the Cash for Clunkers federal rebates drove strong sales in August 2009 …”

Oddly (or ominously), as commenter dscott pointed out at the Christmas Eve off-topic post, finished gasoline shipments have dropped significantly in the past eight weeks or so, and by far more than the normal summer vs. winter differences would explain (especially since prices have declined a bit since summer). There’s no way that gas mileage improvements in new vehicles vs. old would explain the drop-off. The only other alternatives I can think of are either that the economy is seriously slowing down (Can the “experts” be badly blowing their predictions of 2.5%-plus annualized fourth-quarter growth?) or that we’re suddenly importing a lot more gas (not crude oil, finished gasoline, which I think could only be coming from Mexico, Central America, or Canada).

Other less pessimistic suggestions are welcome.

Positivity: Stranded Ariz. student, Texas family rescued

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 5:57 am

Datelined Flagstaff, Arizona:

(12-22) 06:29 PST

Lauren Weinberg was seen leaving her mother’s home in Phoenix on Dec. 11 and later said her car became stuck in the snow a day later in east-central Arizona. The SUV carrying the Higgins family was buried in a snowdrift early this week in rural New Mexico.

The frigid ordeals that followed for occupants of both vehicles ended with their rescues Wednesday. Authorities said all are recovering at hospitals.
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