People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it. Welcome to From On High.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Why Blaming Bush Misses The Mark

Sure it was Bush's fault.  But no more than it was Clinton's fault.  And Bush 1's.  And Reagan's.  And Carter's.  And ...

Here's all you need to know to see that both parties contributed mightily to the train wreck that is about to occur.  Federal spending from 1965 to the present:

If there were another line that showed the rate of inflation over that same period it would reveal an almost straight line left to right. Except for the Vietnam War and the simultaneous War on Poverty years of Lyndon Johnson, the rate hovered between 3 and 5.5% annually.  While federal spending grew uncontrollably.

That's why, when a few lone voices in Congress today ask President Obama to simply find the cash before he extends unemployment benefits - a federal expenditure that will add $30 million to the deficit if he doesn't - they are drowned out by the cacophony coming from those who contributed to the troubling chart above.

Collapse is coming.

And they don't even care.

Graph and accompanying article courtesy of Kevin D. Williamson

Makes Sense

Yeah, it means Crazy Al Gore would have been president in 2001.  But it makes much better sense than having Americans vote for electors rather than for candidates, which is the system we have now:

Mass. may join effort to bypass Electoral College
By Martin Finucane, Boston Globe Staff

The state Legislature is poised to give final approval this week to a new law intended to bypass the Electoral College system and ensure that the winner of the presidential election is determined by the national popular vote.

Both the House and Senate have approved the National Popular Vote bill. Final enactment votes are needed in both chambers, however, before the bill goes to the governor's desk, the Globe reported last week.

Under the proposed law, all 12 of the state's electoral votes would be awarded to the candidate who receives the most votes nationally. [link]
Why not go all the way and simply scrap the Electoral College all together?  Well, because Massachusetts can't on its own.  But we could.

And will.  Some day.

It was a good idea.  But now it's not.

The popular vote!  Democracy at its essence.

As I Suspected

The mystery regarding Obama's decision to close thousands of Chrysler and GM dealers around the country only gets curiouser and curiouser.  Ostensibly, the reason for the closings was to stop the bleeding - to save both companies millions in losses.

But the dealerships being closed (or that have already closed) are independent companies.  How does their demise affect GM in a positive way?  And how, when they existed, did they contribute to the bleeding?

Here's a quote from a TARP Special Inspector General Neil M. Barofsky on the closings and their misguided purpose:

"One GM official emphasized this point by telling SIGTARP (Barofsky) that GM would usually save 'not one damn cent' by closing any particular dealership."

So why, then, if it wasn't going to save GM "one damn cent," did Obama close all those dealerships and throw tens of thousands of Americans out of work?

And why do we allow government to make these stupid decisions at all?

Makes Sense To Me

How does the man who proved himself to be the worst political campaigner in American history campaign to get his pet piece of legislation passed in the Senate?

Campaign in the closet!

When Unemployment Becomes Welfare

Obama excuse-makers have seized on the rather odd notion of late that unemployment checks are a great way to stimulate the economy. Odd because, if that were the case, with 14 million Americans out of work, many of them for years, and most of them receiving unemployment checks all this time, we'd be up to our eyeballs in economic growth.   Instead conditions continue to worsen.

A limp, desperate notion, if you ask me:

Stimulating Unemployment
Wall Street Journal editorial

Presidents typically invite Americans to appear at Rose Garden press conferences to trumpet their policy successes, but yesterday we saw what may have been a first. President Obama introduced three Americans—an auto worker, a fitness center employee and a woman in real estate—who've been out of work so long they underscore the failure of his economic program. Where are his spinmeisters when he really needs them?

Sure, Mr. Obama's ostensible purpose was to lobby Congress for the eighth extension of jobless benefits since the recession began, to a record 99 weeks, or nearly two years. And he whacked Senate Republicans for blocking the extension, though Republicans are merely asking that the extension be offset by cuts in other federal spending.

But Mr. Obama was nonetheless obliged to concede that, 18 months after his $862 billion stimulus, there are still five job seekers for every job opening and that 2.5 million Americans will soon run out of unemployment benefits. What happens when the 99 weeks of benefits run out? Will the President demand that they be extended to three years, or four?

The President is right that "we've got a lot of work to do" to get Americans back to work and that the toll on families from high unemployment is considerable. There are few things in life more demoralizing than being unemployed for a lengthy period of time. But paying people not to work and adding $30 billion more to nearly $1.4 trillion of deficit spending is a dismal substitute for real economic growth and private job creation. Republicans are right to resist it. [link]
We don't need a welfare check, Mr. President.  We need job opportunities.

It's That Time Of Year

Must be summer ...

You might wonder why I've got four weed trimmers. Think about it. One for me and one for each of Paula's hands, with one to spare should she break one.

So many weeds.