Tag Archives: politics

MSNBC suspends Schultz for calling Ingraham a ‘slut’

MSNBC has suspended Ed Schultz for calling Laura Ingraham a “slut” on the air. And Schultz has apologized publicly.

This is progress, as in the past leftwing hosts on MSNBC could say practically anything about their conservative opposites (and frequently did) without consequence.

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Rep. Ryan agrees that his plan played a role in Democrats’ special-election win

Rep. Ryan agreed today that his budget plan played a role in Democrats’ special-election win in New York yesterday.

If Ryan is right, we are in big trouble. His plan might not be the solution, but the Democrats refuse to offer any alternatives. And if it is this Democratic non-plan that the public is choosing, it means that the public remains unwilling to deal with the debt in any way at all.

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“We stand for freedom.”

Kennedy's speech

Fifty years ago today, John Kennedy stood before Congress and the nation and declared that the United States was going to the Moon. Amazingly, though this is by far the most remembered speech Kennedy ever gave, very few people remember why he gave the speech, and what he was actually trying to achieve by making it.

Above all, going to the Moon and exploring space was not his primary goal.

The Context

For Kennedy — whose presidential campaign included an aggressive anti-communist stance against the Soviet Union — the months before the speech had not gone well. Five weeks earlier, for instance, the CIA-led attempt to invade Cuba and overthrow Castro’s communist government had ended in total failure. When Kennedy refused to lend direct military support to the Bay of Pigs invasion, the 1,200 man rebel force was quickly overcome. “How could I have been so stupid as to let them go ahead?” Kennedy complained privately to his advisors.

In Berlin, the tensions between the East and the West were continuing to escalate, and would lead in only a few short months to Khrushchev’s decision to build the Berlin Wall, sealing off East Berlin and the citizens of East Germany from the rest of the world.

In the race to beat the Soviets in space, things were going badly as well. NASA had announced the United States’ intention to put the first man into space sometime in the spring of 1961. The agency hoped that this flight would prove that the leader of the capitalist world still dominated the fields of technology, science, and exploration.

Originally scheduled for a March 6, 1961 launch, the short fifteen minute sub-orbital flight was repeatedly delayed. The Mercury capsule’s first test flight in January, with a chimpanzee as test pilot, rose forty miles higher than intended, overshot its landing by a hundred and thirty miles, and when the capsule was recovered three hours later it had begun leaking and was actually sinking. Then in March another test of the Mercury capsule included the premature firing of the escape rocket on top of the capsule, the unplanned release of the backup parachutes during descent, and the discovery of dents on the capsule itself.

These difficulties caused NASA to postpone repeatedly its first manned mission. First the agency rescheduled the launch to late March. Then early April. Then mid-April. And then it was too late.
» Read more

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Pawlenty calls for Medicare and Social Security reform — in Florida

Now Tim Pawlenty has called for Medicare and Social Security reform — in Florida.

Once again, I don’t know how sincere Pawlenty really is, but he certainly has started his Presidential campaign challenging the voters to face hard realities.

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Kennedy’s Moon speech, May 25, 1961

An evening pause: Fifty years ago tomorrow, on May 25, 1961, John Kennedy spoke to Congress about the world situation and the war between freedom and tyranny. “We stand for freedom,” he began, and finished by committing the United States to sending a man to the Moon and bringing him back safely by the end of the decade.

The clip below shows the first five minutes of that speech. It makes it clear that Kennedy’s main point was not to send the United States to the stars, but to stake out our ground in the battle for freedom and democracy. I will write more about this tomorrow.

To see the whole speech, go to the following link at the Miller Center for Public Affairs.

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NASA announces Orion program will continue

NASA announces that the Orion program will continue, though under a different name.

This is a non-announcement, made to appease those in Congress who are requiring NASA to build the program-formerly-called-Constellation. NASA will do as Congress demands, and in the process will build nothing while spending a lot of money for a rocket and space capsule that can’t be built for the amount budgeted.

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Dear Congress: Your credit application has been turned down

Dear Congress: Your credit application has been turned down.

You may also wish to contact a consumer credit counseling agency. The National Foundation for Credit Counseling can help you locate a reputable counseling agency in your area. You may also wish to visit the NFCC’s website for helpful tips on such subjects as

•drawing up a budget
•living within your means
•saving during tough economic times
•steps to take when your finances get out of control

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Reid rejects Boehner proposal for $2 trillion in spending cuts

On Thursday Senator Harry Reid (D-Nevada) rejected House Speaker John Boehner’s call for “trillions” in spending cuts.

Once again, I must note that while we can be rightly skeptical of the Republicans expressed desire to cut the budget, we can have no doubt that the Democrats are against it entirely, and will resist spending cuts on all fronts.

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Three Reasons That Obama’s Speech Will Worry the Jewish Community

Three reasons that Obama’s speech today will worry the Jewish community.

I especially liked this particular comment in the comments section:

Americans,and to a lesser extent Israelis, need to stop treating renouncing terror as a concession from the Palestinians. For most societies it is a prerequisite to merely being considered worth talking to as human beings. If Palestinian society is not willing to condemn beheading a three month old and shooting an anti-tank at a school bus, then they are savages who should be treated as such.

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Obama and ignoring the War Powers Act

Obama and ignoring the War Powers Act.

If nothing happens, history will say that the War Powers Act was condemned to a quiet death by a president who had solemnly pledged, on the campaign trail, to put an end to indiscriminate warmaking.

The point here has nothing to do with whether the military operation in Libya is wise or foolish. The point is that Obama has now committed American troops to a war without legal authorization.

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“The mood was less than cordial.”

Boehner meets with tea party activists from his district. “The mood was less than cordial.”

Surely, there are Tea Party activists with unreasonable expectations of what Republicans can accomplish with control of the House. However, the major beef Tea Partiers have with Republicans is not their lack of accomplishment. It’s their unwillingness to stand and fight, their apparent lack of principle, and the resulting impotence toward shifting the narrative in Washington.

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White House shuts out Herald scribe

Obama transparency: The White House has shut out a reporter because it disliked the slant of the newspaper’s news coverage. In the administration’s own words:

“I tend to consider the degree to which papers have demonstrated to covering the White House regularly and fairly in determining local pool reporters,” White House spokesman Matt Lehrich wrote in response to a Herald request for full access to the presidential visit. “My point about the op-ed was not that you ran it but that it was the full front page, which excluded any coverage of the visit of a sitting US President to Boston. I think that raises a fair question about whether the paper is unbiased in its coverage of the President’s visits,” Lehrich wrote.

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Twenty percent of the new waivers to ObamaCare are in Pelosi’s district

I guess they finally found out what’s in it: Twenty percent of the new waivers to ObamaCare are in Nancy Pelosi’s district.

Pelosi’s district secured almost 20 percent of the latest issuance of waivers nationwide, and the companies that won them didn’t have much in common with companies throughout the rest of the country that have received Obamacare waivers. Other common waiver recipients were labor union chapters, large corporations, financial firms and local governments. But Pelosi’s district’s waivers are the first major examples of luxurious, gourmet restaurants and hotels getting a year-long pass from Obamacare.

Then there’s this new poll: By 17 percentage points, Americans support repeal.

Repeal is supported by men and women; by those in their 30s, 40s, 50s to mid-60s, and mid-60s on up; and by all income groups (ranging from under-$20,000 to over-$100,000 a year).

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Senate Democrats: Where is your budget?

Senate Democrats: Where is your budget?

With the statutory committee deadline having been missed by six weeks, and with 744 days gone by since the Democrat-led Senate passed a budget, it was reported that this week Senate Democrats would finally produce a budget and hold a markup. But no budget was produced and the markup was delayed yet again.

The Republicans might not be very serious about spending cuts, but the Democrats are a downright joke. At least the Republicans have made some effort to deal with the problem, tepid as that effort is. The Democrats not only oppose any suggestion, they can’t even do their job.

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IPCC announces reforms for next report

The IPCC announced this week it has established new procedures in an effort to avoid the problems that occurred with the last report.

I remain very skeptical of these reforms, as well as anything this UN organization publishes. Consider this quote for example:

On the issue of citing non-peer-reviewed literature, such as reports from nongovernmental organizations and climate activists, the new procedures say that IPCC report authors can include such documents “as long as they are scientifically and technically valid. [emphasis mine]

How convenient. Decide that something written by Greenpeace is “scientifically and technically valid” and you can use it as evidence.

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