March 7, 2016

Not News: SNAP (Food Stamps) Has Become the Nation’s Guaranteed Income Program

Since the economy finally began consistently regaining jobs in early 2010, the establishment press has had a consistent, predictable and annoying reporting (and non-reporting) pattern.

It starts with the Friday morning jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics at or near the beginning of the month. Virtually without fail, it has spit out positive and sometimes even very positive seasonally adjusted increases in overall payroll employment (one small exception: the Census hiring season in mid-2010). Those seasonally adjusted increases have often reflected the underlying data, but on several glaring occasions (one of them in January of this year, when the seasonal conversion should arguably have shown no jobs added at all), they have not. Later that day, or in some cases a week later, but in either case in the late afternoon when most reporters are thinking about their weekends instead of their jobs, the USDA releases its report on enrollment in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), aka Food Stamps. If you didn’t know that the economy was adding jobs, the Food Stamp figures would lead you to believe that it wasn’t. Somehow, this is never news.

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Thanks, ORP

Filed under: Taxes & Government — Tom @ 4:51 pm

If the Republican Party gets GOP nominee and/or President Trump, the Ohio Republican Party will likely have played a major role, as Tom Zawistowki demonstrates:

KASICH AND ORP SUCCEED IN DENYING OHIO VOTERS
THE RIGHT TO VOTE FOR PRESIDENT IN OHIO PRIMARY

Akron, OH – Tom Zawistowski, President of the We the People Convention, announced tonight that Ohio Governor John Kasich and the Ohio Republican Party have succeeded in their goal of denying as many as one million Ohio Republican Voters their right to vote for the Republican Presidential Nominee of their choice in this year’s Republican Primary. Zawistowski confirmed that both the Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio campaigns have essentially “conceded” Ohio due to the rules passed by the ORP and the Ohio House last year, making Ohio a “winner-take-all” state. Neither campaign is spending money in Ohio and neither candidate has even visited Ohio. Republican frontrunner Donald Trump has visited the State twice and is leading in the polls, but is also not spending significant money on the race due to the unfair advantage given to Kasich by the ORP and the House.

Zawistowski explained, “Have you noticed all those TV ads in Ohio for Donald Trump, Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio? Have you seen all their signs all over the state? Been getting their mailings? The answer is that you have not, because they do not exist. The deck is so stacked against them by the ORP and John Kasich that they all have no practical choice but to concede the state and dissapoint their voters. All those Cruz voters and Rubio voters who are so excited about their candidates, thanks to John Kasich and the Ohio Republican Party, their votes just don’t count this election. Both candidates are way behind in the polls because they decided as early as last June not to campaign in Ohio. Fortunately, according to our own polls and other national polls, Trump is leading Kasich by 6% at this point, so voters have one alternative to Kasich, although that lead may evaporate as virtually all the money donated to the Ohio Republican Party is going to support Kasich’s campaign.”

Zawistowski continued, “In the ultimate irony, Kasich and the Republican Establishment, by using a “contrived” win by Kasich in Ohio and “ideally” another winner-take-all win by Rubio in Florida to force a “brokered convention”, will have a second opportunity to invalidate tens of millions of votes by Trump, Cruz and Rubio supporters by picking another candidate as their Presidential Nominee at the Convention! This type of manipulation of the electoral process is why 75% of Republican voters on Super Tuesday said in exit polls that the Republican Leadership had betrayed them. In order to avoid this double jeopordy at the hands of John Kasich and the Ohio Republican Party, we urge Ohio voters to do two things in this primary. First, voters should not vote for John Kasich who did this to them, but instead vote for Trump, Cruz, and Rubio to prevent Kasich from winning the Primary. Second, go to http://www.ohiocitizenspac.org and locate the endorsed Ohio Republican State Central Committee member in your Senate District and vote for them, so that citizens can replace the corrupt leadership in the Ohio Republican Party who implemented this plan that denied you your opportunity to vote in this primary. That is how we restore OUR Ohio Republican Party, hold those who did this heinous act accountable, and make sure this never happens again.”

Last April 22, 2015, at Kasich’s and the ORP’s request, the Ohio House Senate voted 23-10 to change the Ohio Primary from proportional to “winner-take-all”. This year, whichever candidate gets the most total votes wins all of Ohio’s 66 Republican Convention Delegates. This scheme intentionally made the idea of competing in Ohio financially unjustifiable for every other candidate except Kasich and therefore no other candidate is running to win in Ohio, with the exception of Donald Trump. The We the People Convention had spoken out about this move denying voters their primary vote in a Press Release last April, in which Zawistowski implored the Ohio House to vote down the measure.

Current polling, though, shows Trump leading.

As Kasich’s candidacy becomes more and more obviously not viable, his chances of catching Trump would appear to be fading — and quickly. As Tom Z’s email noted, Cruz and Rubio aren’t campaigning. Maybe Cruz should consider changing his mind (and Rubio really-really-really should consider dropping out), but it’s mighty late in the game for Cruz to ramp up a recovery effort.

Thus, the most likely result at the moment is a Trump win.

I don’t think that this is what the ORP envisioned 11 months ago. (That’s an understatement, folks.)

Kasich’s best chance of winning appears to be to tell Buckeye State Republicans: “Even if you like Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio and despise me, you need to vote for me to stop Trump.” Good luck with that, guy.

The term “just desserts” comes to mind.

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UPDATE: Tom Z informs me that the House also voted on the matter, with a 56-43 margin. It was along party lines, except that nine Republicans voted against the change to a winner-take-all primary: Becker, Boose, Brinkman, Hambley, Hood, Retherford, Roegner, Thompson and Zeltwanger.

How Convenient: Labor Dept. Rule May Remove Financial Advice From the Airwaves

Score another blow for (allegedly) “unintended consequences.”

A proposed 33-page rule applying to investment advisers emanating from the Department of Labor would redefine the fiduciary relationship between investment advisers and their clients investing for retirement, which is the predominant objective of most investors. According to the Wall Street Journal, the rule “could be released as soon as this month.” One side effect of the rule is that it could mark the beginning of the end of financial talk radio and TV broadcasts. Since such programs tend to lean center-right (there are exceptions, including Suze Orman), it seems mighty convenient for the government and its regulatory army that the press, particularly the Associated Press, has paid no visible attention to this apparently imminent rule.

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Monday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (030716)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:00 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.

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6:00 a.m.: Learned while preparing a post on Nancy Reagan’s death: One of the great enduring left-driven myths about Reagan was that he was, in the execrable words of Democrat Clark Clifford, an “amiable dunce.”

Those same mythmakers “somehow” forget that Clifford, as President of First American Bankshares from 1982-1991, “deliberately or unwittingly fronted for international criminals, delaying for years their detection by bank regulators and drug agents.” He was indicted for his involvement, only avoided going to trial because “he was physically unable to go to trial.”

In other words, it was Clark Clifford who, had he gone to trial, would have used the following defense: “I was just an amiable dunce.”