Links for 9-28-2012

Links for 9-27-2012

  • Democrat political consultant and pollster Pat Caddell spoke at an Accuracy in Media conference and recommended that Mitt Romney run against the media: “Why isn’t Romney himself getting up and saying, ‘I’m running against two organizations – I’m running against the Democrats and the President, and I’m running against the mainstream media, which will not tell you the truth.’” (Apparently I missed my calling as political consultant and pollster.) The full text of Pat Caddell’s speech is here, and it includes this: “I think we’re at the most dangerous time in our political history in terms of the balance of power in the role that the media plays in whether or not we maintain a free democracy or not.” He continued:

    [T]he overwhelming bias has become very real and very dangerous. We have a First Amendment for one reason. We have a First Amendment not because the Founding Fathers liked the press – they hated the press – but they believed, as [Thomas] Jefferson said, that in order to have a free country, in order to be a free people, we needed a free press. That was the job – so there was an implicit bargain in the First Amendment, the press being the only institution, at that time, which was in our process of which there was no checks and balances. We designed a constitutional system with many checks and balances. The one that had no checks and balances was the press, and that was done under an implicit understanding that, somehow, the press would protect the people from the government and the power by telling – somehow allowing – people to have the truth. That is being abrogated as we speak, and has been for some time. It is now creating – that is the danger that I spoke to.

  • With two weeks before voter registration closes for the November election, there are 225,000 fewer voters in Chicago than there were in 2008. Chicago area graveyards are going to be very busy the next couple of weeks.

  • That voter fraud thing that doesn’t happen happened again in Arkansas, where five people were charged with absentee ballot fraud.

  • From an economic perspective, 2012 is on course to be the worst non-recession year in the history of the U.S. The downward revision of second quarter GDP to 1.25% puts the country at risk of another recession (as if the last one truly ended).

  • Lawrence Lindsey argues that the Federal Reserve is “buying the entire deficit” via QE3.

  • The Department of Energy relaxed the repayment terms of electric car manufacturer Tesla’s $465 million loan, which suggests Tesla is in a cash crunch. The DoE did something similar for Solyndra shortly before it filed for bankruptcy.

  • Evidence suggests that Pennsylvania’s high taxes on oil and gas operations is prompting companies to shift drilling to Ohio. Naturally Republican Governor John Kasich has proposed increasing Ohio’s taxes on oil and gas companies to take fuller advantage of the windfall. Fortunately for Ohio the Republican-controlled General Assembly has resisted a tax increase.

  • The FCC-imposed taxes on your cellular phone bill paid for this Romney protestor’s “free” cell phone and service.

Links for 9-26-2012

  • Texas’ stricter voter registration laws will be in effect through the November election thanks to a Supreme Court decision.

  • J. Christian Adams wrote an article for FrontPage Magazine excoriating the New York Times for attacking True The Vote and other groups that are encouraging people to work as poll watchers and to clean up voter registration rolls:

    For exercising this noble civic undertaking, the headlines of the New York Times scream “Voter Harassment Circa 2012.” The Times tells us “a Tea Party group, True the Vote, descends on a largely minority precinct and combs the registration records… nonexistent [voter fraud] is used as an excuse to reduce the political rights of minorities, the poor, students, older Americans and other groups that tend to vote Democratic.” This is an outright lie. And it might be shocking if it weren’t published on the pages of a newspaper with a long history of publishing lies, such as those fed through the pen of Times reporter and Stalin stooge Walter Duranty. The Times has no data that cleaning up the voter rolls affects “minorities” and “the poor,” but emotional dog whistles work better than reason or facts.

  • Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted is trying to clean the state’s voter registration rolls, but federal law limits what he can do and Attorney General Eric Holder isn’t helping (surprise!). Around 1.6 million of Ohio’s 7.8 million registered voters are inactive, meaning they haven’t voted in the last four years. A high percentage of these are likely to be people who moved, including people who moved out of state and are therefore ineligible to vote in Ohio. It usually takes years to move inactive voters off the rolls.

  • The Republican Party of Cook County, Illinois is mounting an effort to staff every Republican election judge position for the November election to help head off voter fraud. The deadline is tomorrow and they’re 400 people short.

  • The city of St. Paul, Minnesota and Department of Justice lawyer Thomas Perez agreed to a quid pro quo that had St. Paul withdraw the case Magner v. Gallagher from the Supreme Court. That case would have been the Supreme Court’s first chance to rule on “disparate-impact analysis,” which uses statistics to prove discrimination under the 1968 Fair Housing Act. Court observers think it likely that the Supreme Court would have struck this down, but since DoJ has used it to collect millions of dollars in fines from banks, DoJ has a strong incentive to prevent it from reaching the court’s docket.

  • Within 24 hours of Ambassador Chris Stevens’ death, the Obama administration knew he’d been murdered by members of an al Queda affiliated group, yet for days afterward they publicly blamed an anti-Islamic YouTube video for the attack.

  • Congressman Darrell Issa and Senator Charles Grassley asked the Justice Department Inspector General to investigate the murder of ICE agent Jaime Zapata on February 15, 2011. There are indications that Zapata was killed with an Operation Fast and Furious weapon.

Links for 9-25-2012

  • Brent Bozell addressed an open letter to the mainstream media accusing them of slanting their coverage of the election in Obama’s favor: “In the quarter century since the Media Research Center was established to document liberal media bias, there has never been a more brazen and complete attempt by the liberal so-called ‘news’ media to decide the outcome of an election.” The letter is co-signed by Rush Limbaugh, Laura Ingraham, Mark Levin, Matt Kibbe, Louie Gohmert, and several other people.

  • Dirty Jobs star Mike Rowe will appear at a Mitt Romney campaign event in Ohio tomorrow. Rowe’s web site mikeroweWORKS is worth investigating, particularly the video of his Congressional testimony on the mismatch between the job skills employers seek and what kids are being taught these days.

  • Investors’ Business Daily describes Valerie Jarrett as Obama’s Rasputin.

  • Michael Mukasey, the former federal judge who sentenced Omar Abdel Rahman (the “Blind Sheik”) to life in prison, wrote an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal discussing the possibility that the Obama administration will release Abdel Rahman to Egypt. His conclusion: “Transferring Abdel Rahman to an Egypt already under the control of the Muslim Brotherhood and presided over by Mohammed Morsi would be pouring gasoline on a bonfire.”

  • Charlie Rose interviewed Mohammed Morsi, who declined to describe the U.S. and Egypt as allies. Why are we still sending billions of dollars to Egypt?

  • The Pigford debacle is still alive – the Obama administration added Hispanics and women to the group that can collect money from the federal government by attesting (often fraudulently) that they attempted to farm something – anything – in the 1980s and 1990s.

Links for 9-24-2012

  • Here’s the Reuters version of the Associated Press story I linked yesterday regarding The Advancement Project’s “report” on the effects of voter photo ID laws and clean voter rolls (yes, this is how the mainstream media works these days). Hans von Spakovsky tore apart the report in an article entitled, “Advancement Project Advances Its Fraud Agenda,” which is an apt description.

  • FreedomWorks endorsed Bryan Hughes for speaker of the Texas House without waiting for the November 6 election. We’ll take all the help we can get removing RINO Joe Straus from that position.

  • William Jacobson of the Legal Insurrection blog did some investigating and learned that Democrat candidate for U.S. Senate from Massachusetts Elizabeth Warren has been practicing law out of her Harvard Law School office but lacks a license to practice law in Massachusetts. Warren admitted as much later in the day. Stephen Green supplied the response from Warren that we all expected: “According to old family lore, I’m 1/32nd licensed to practice law.”

  • Jed Babbin offers more detail on the Taliban attack on Camp Bastion in Afghanistan that killed the commander of Marine air squadron VMA–211, Lt. Col. Christopher Raible, and Sgt. Bradley Atwell.

  • The Daily Caller obtained a full audio recording of Obama’s speech and question and answer session at a 1998 conference at Loyola College. In addition to the previously publicized comments about redistribution, there was this: “Obama also said he viewed welfare recipients and ‘the working poor’ as ‘a majority coalition’ that could be mobilized to help advance progressive policies and elect their champions.” The full article is worth reading – Obama’s comments on welfare reform and health care are a preview of his first term’s policies. If the mainstream media had bothered to search for and report on this in 2008, more people would have known what to expect from a President Obama. Of course the mainstream media is ignoring the story again this year.

  • Victor Davis Hansen wrote another excellent rant about Obama, which includes this: “There is not really any free press anymore, but instead a Ministry of Truth, in which PBS, NPR, the New York Times, the Washington Post, CBS, ABC, NBC, MSNBC, CNN, Newsweek, Time, AP, McClatchy, and Reuters are de facto extensions of the Obama campaign – far more highbrow and adept in disguising their partisanship than an overt Hannity or Limbaugh. Their ‘journalists’ are fed favorable administration leaks when in the old days they had to sue to publish a hit piece. They care little whether ambassadors are left unguarded, or that the U.S. suffers the most costly attack on its air assets since Vietnam, or that administration officials offer lies about Libya that they know cannot be true.”

  • Breitbart.com is learning to write Drudge-style headlines: “Canada PM to Meet with Netanyahu, Obama with Whoopi.”

  • Actress Julianne Moore won an Emmy for portraying Sarah Palin in HBO’s Game Change series, and Ms. Moore couldn’t help but insult Palin in her acceptance speech. I wonder what Ms. Moore will say when she learns that SarahPAC is fundraising off her acceptance speech.

  • It was bad enough when China and Japan were arguing over the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea, but now Taiwan is in on the act, too.

  • Kurds living in Syria have taken advantage of that nations’s upheaval and now control the northeastern part of the country.

  • Would-be defector to the U.S. Wang Lijun was sentenced to 15 years in prison for “defection, bribery, abuse of power, and ‘bending the law for selfish ends.’” Wang could have faced the death penalty but appears to have received leniency in exchange for aiding the prosecution of Gu Kailai.

Links for 9-23-2012

  • The Associated Press published a story claiming that voter photo ID laws and efforts to clean up voting rolls “may hinder at least 10 million Hispanic citizens who seek to vote this fall.” The source of the story? The Advancement Project, which is funded by George Soros, the AFL-CIO, the SEIU, Moveon.org, the Hewlett Foundation, the Packard Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Tides Foundation and is operated by former Obama campaign staff, former Obama Department of Justice employees, large Obama campaign contributors, and former NAACP staffers. This group would claim that voter photo ID laws and well maintained voting rolls will hinder voting by a minority group? Nah. Say it isn’t so.

  • The Advancement Project is going to have to compete with Michelle Obama for minority victimhood status – she told the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation that fighting against photo voter ID laws is the “…march of our times…the sit-in of our day…”

  • A black Democrat who lost a primary race for Florida’s House of Representatives by 13 votes is suing his opponent for absentee ballot fraud. The lawsuit, filed by John Patrick Julien, claims that Barbara Watson’s campaign paid people to collect absentee ballots at nursing homes; at least some of the absentee ballots were cast by people who don’t recall having voted, including people who were dead at the time. One person hired by the Watson campaign “ran radio ads telling Haitian Creole-speaking North Miamians to ‘consult’ with her before casting their absentee ballots, in order to ‘vote correctly.’” You can’t make this stuff up. (via Election Law Center)

  • More from the Associated Press: “The Hinds County [Mississippi] Republican Party and the county’s only white supervisor are suing four black county supervisors, charging race was used improperly as a factor in redrawing district voting lines.” Hinds County is 69% black and 29% white, and the county’s only white supervisor is claiming that the four black supervisors violated open meetings laws by gathering behind closed doors to redraw voting district boundaries such that black candidates will have an (even greater) advantage. The lawsuit alleges that the president of the Hinds County Board of Supervisors told the chairman of the county GOP: “Look Pete, this is a black county, we have black leadership, we are going to hire black people, and elect black people. Get over it.” Mississippi has a history of this sort of thing – you can read about it in J. Christian Adams’ book Injustice: Exposing the Racial Agenda of the Obama Justice Department.

  • CNN reporters rummaging around the burned-out American consulate in Benghazi found Ambassador Chris Stevens’ personal journal and used it as a source. Eventually CNN got around to telling the State Department and the Stevens family about the journal and after several requests from the family agreed to return it. I’m ticked off that CNN would do something this slimy. I’m also ticked off that the State Department didn’t send anyone (preferably someone carrying a large weapon containing live ammunition) to Benghazi to search the consulate and retrieve anything the attackers failed to carry away. Hillary Clinton’s operation is inept and sloppy.

  • Our consulate in Benghazi relied on local security supplied by a militia with ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, the “February 17 Brigade.”

  • On “Fox News Sunday” Brit Hume said the Romney campaign is not doing enough to counteract media bias. I would go beyond “counteracting” and run against the mainstream media as well as the Obama campaign because, for all practical purposes, they’re the same.

  • Senator Rand Paul got a vote on his bill to withhold foreign aid from Egypt and Libya until those countries turn over the people who attacked the embassy and consulate and from Pakistan until they release Dr. Shakil Afridi, the doctor who supplied intelligence to the U.S. about Osama bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad. Unfortunately it went down by a vote of 10–81.

  • Last week’s Taliban attack on Camp Bastion in Afghanistan, which destroyed six Harrier jets and damaged two others, was arguably the worst day in Marine Corps aviation history since the Tet Offensive in 1968.

  • In Texas, even the deer are smarter than the liberals.

Links for 9-21-2012

  • Hundreds of pro-democracy demonstrators in Benghazi assaulted the headquarters of the Islamic militia that’s being blamed for carrying out the attack that resulted in the murder of Ambassador Chris Stevens. The demonstrators claimed to have freed 20 prisoners that they found in the building. Libya’s government says they have detained eight people in connection with the attack.

  • The Libyans who rented the main villa comprising the U.S. consulate in Benghazi were surprised the U.S. did little to bolster the building’s security.

  • The mainstream media isn’t covering it, but U.S. embassies and consulates are under assault in Uganda, India, Malaysia, Australia, and Pakistan. Instead the media are focused on Mitt Romney’s tax returns.

  • A Gallup poll found that “Americans’ distrust in the media hit a new high this year, with 60% saying they have little or no trust in the mass media to report the news fully, accurately, and fairly.” Only 26% of self-identified Republicans trust the media. The numbers for independents and Democrats were 31% and 58%, respectively.

  • The coordination between Tracy Schmaler of the Department of Justice’s Office of Public Affairs and Media Matters included attacks on a then-active DoJ employee, Christopher Coates. Schmaler provided false information to Media Matters that they used to attack Coates, who at the time was prosecuting cases in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in South Carolina. Coates is the former head of DoJ’s Voting Section. He went crosswise with DoJ’s political leadership when he complied with a subpoena to testify before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

  • The Office of Inspector General report on Operation Fast and Furious may have cleared Attorney General Eric Holder of direct knowledge of the operation, but it shows that Holder is doing a poor job of running the DoJ: “The report notes that none of the five deputy assistant attorneys general who reviewed the wiretap applications ‘identified any issues or raised any concerns about the information contained in the applications.’ In fact, three of the DAAGs who agreed to be interviewed admitted that they did not read the agents’ supporting affidavits that were submitted with the wiretap applications. That documentation is essential to determining whether a wiretap application meets the factual and legal standards of the law. Those affidavits, which contained information about firearms’ being trafficked into Mexico, should have ‘caused a prosecutor…particularly one who was already sensitive to the issue of ‘gun walking,’ to have questions about ATF’s conduct of the investigation.’ That they were not reviewed by several DOJ officials who were tasked with doing so reflects a lapse of professionalism and competence.”

  • The Los Angeles Times again refused to release the Khalidi video.

  • Rahm Emanuel was rolled by the Chicago Teachers Union: “Their ‘concessions’ are laughable: Student achievement now accounts for 30 percent of teacher evaluations, but the State of Illinois already requires 25 percent. Teachers will receive raises of 3 percent, 2 percent, and 2 percent over the next three years, on top of automatic step-and-lane pay hikes that are already set in stone. And the school day will be longer, but teachers won’t be teaching any more hours; the city is required to hire hundreds more teachers to fill out the longer school days. All told, the deal will cost Chicago hundreds of millions of dollars in the coming years. This is a resounding defeat for Rahm Emanuel and the education reform movement.”

  • Iranian hackers have been launching cyberattacks against U.S. banks since late 2011. The victims of the attacks include Bank of America, Citibank, and JP Morgan Chase.

  • China is employing economic weapons in its dispute with Japan over islands in the East China Sea – Chinese customs inspections of products from Japanese companies are suddenly very onerous.

  • Shell sued Greenpeace in The Netherlands to stop their interference in Shell’s Arctic drilling efforts. Shell wants the court to fine Greenpeace €1 million if any of its members approach within 500 meters of any Shell property.