Kevin’s Corner

Editor’s Note (3/14/12): 

Discourse and Diatribe has a new writer. Kevin Francis is an old friend from my undergrad days (we are fraternity brothers), and he and I have been debating politics for decades. Our debates have picked up again recently – thanks to the magic of Facebook – and he is the perfect person to take up the political discourse (and occasional diatribe) from the conservative perspective on our website. As you’ll see, Kevin doesn’t pull any punches!

Enjoy – and welcome, Kevin!

David Bleidistel

Editor, Discourse and Diatribe

 

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November 4, 2012:  And Here’s Reality

Clearly the House remains in the hands of Republican control. Despite Nancy Pelosi’s desperate hopes of returning to her perch upon her broom – sorry – ding dong the witch is dead. That leaves the minor job of predicting the Presidency as well as the Senate. My first prediction is that they will both go to the same candidate. Should Obama retain the Presidency – the Senate will likely follow. Should Romney win, I believe the Senate will follow as well. Yes, there are the two abortion races to consider – easy wins for the Republicans if unpopular comments had not been made. Breaking those down – I believe that Murdoch still has a good chance of winning. He is in a red state and clarified his comments. He was far ahead of his opponent and was set on cruise control till the rape comment. Don’t discount the fact that party affiliation runs strong in his state and to change the tide – it will take more than that comment. Secondly, and I believe this strongly, his words were “publicly” unpopular but the core values extend to the bigger right to life issue and while people may not want to tell pollsters over the phone that they are supporting Murdoch – privately – in the comfort of a secure voting booth – I believe they will. The Democrats are not helping themselves either with the fact that they are planning to have Pro Choice out in force close to polling places. It will anger those with Pro Life leanings and further the desire to make a stand and choose Murdoch.

 

For a while I did sales in building my business. I quickly learned something that I believe is invaluable. Once you have the sale – shut up and go home. If you keep talking – you can only hurt yourself. You are looking for a yes – making it a more enthusiastic yes does nothing – saying something that may give the customer an opportunity to say – let me think about it – that is a sharp veer from the course you were on. Akin is running against himself. Quite frankly, you could have put a mongoose in red and Claire would have fallen by a good margin. All Akin had to do was stay with the concept above. You have the deal – now shut up. He didn’t do that. On his side is the Pro Life core that will still pull in votes, but also on his side is the fact that while people are now saying let me think about it – they are looking at Claire and asking if they want more of the same. This one will be closer to call though – and Claire may still pull it out – but if there is a hard break to Romney – this will follow.

 

Don’t discount concerns over gridlock. Romney received endorsements on this idea alone. Democrats bemoaned this as political blackmail and stated that this idea to not support the President regardless of his ideas should not be a factor for which the Republicans should be rewarded. Why should it not be a factor – it is a reality. Obama himself, when he was riding high and at his most arrogant, prior to the first debate that he basically missed out on – said that his victory will be of the size that will give him a mandate from the people. It is very possible that if he does win – he will not have the popular vote – that is far from a mandate. Well, let me rephrase that – it is a mandate – for the Republican house to continue to push an uncompromising agenda. This will lead to what would be the biggest fear of the American people – gridlock preventing things from getting done. Naturally if you believe that – and most educated voters do – they will have to give an additional consideration to Romney. Why? Because Democrats at their core see themselves as willing to compromise and they will compromise on issues of ideology while Republicans will do so only in an emergency. How the public portrays those ideas will determine if Republicans decide an issue is an emergency or not. Worse, in the unlikely event that Obama wins and Republican’s get the house and senate – be prepared for the next Watergate on Libya – and a push towards impeachment. Yes, Obama has set forth a rocky path.

 

Democrats – don’t lose heart – if Obama comes in – he will let you down – but get things done. Why? Obama cares more about his legacy that his ideology. He will make compromises that Democrats and his spoken promises would have been unthinkable in an attempt to maintain or bolster his own popularity and dampen the idea of Libya and poor management. He will make the deals that you don’t like. Democrats falsely believe that in a second term, with no election to follow, Obama will be more adamant about his ideas and do what he needs to do to work around congress when he can. You would be wrong. He will do what he needs to do to leave the office as a success – not as the first African American Jimmy Carter. He is deeply concerned about his image and his legacy and he will make that a priority. He wants to remain relevant after his term ends.

 

On the other hand – if turn out and the vaunted ground game that Obama has constantly talked about – break the way reasonable analysts suggest – Romney could top 300. This would be the ultimate nightmare for Democrats as the Supreme Court will flip and the push towards a conservative America will be there for years to come. You can count on a very aggressive court agenda the day that things flip to a conservative majority. Say what you will about Republican’s – they are adept at getting things through the court system and they will do so to a great deal of success. I further see that the newest crop of voters are more up for grabs than at any time in history. Most in college were liberal based on the ideals of youth and the lack of real world experience combined with the teachings of a usually more liberal faculty. Alas, the internet has changed all that and information is easily available. The acceptance of information taught in Universities and Colleges as a default is not what it once was and embracing social media is a talent that is suited best for conservatives whose message comes across more eloquently and with many more soft edges in media than in person.

 

All that being said – this election is too close to call. I will stick beside my idea that the Senate will follow the Presidency and the house is a lock. I give the popular vote to Romney. My prediction for the Presidency is that Romney gets over 300 or Obama gets a squeaker. My prediction for the Presidency – Obama winning – he will cave and usher in the next President to be a Republican or he won’t cave and will usher in the next President to be a conservative. If Romney wins, his economic policies will give enough comfort to business that an expansion that is begging for government to get out of the way will happen and while serving as a good President – he will get huge bumps for an economy that will do better, a Supreme court that face affirmative action and election reform that are pretty much going the conservative way anyway and a sharp turn away from Obama who will be painted with the Libya failure, his administration with Fast and Furious and his failures to complete many of his promised ideas will be tagged in what will go down as a terrible Presidency where American bought into an idea rather that a skill set. Either way – the next 4 years ends badly for Obama – and it couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.

 

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October 1, 2012:  Politics and Human Nature

I have been keenly watching this election and have come to the realization that the fault on the Republican Party is that in getting elected, they are unwilling to deal with human nature; and in governing, the Democratic Party is unwilling to deal with human nature.  For Republicans,  they fail to realize that people want to believe that they are fair and just and have a sense of community.  They don’t want to point out that it simply does not exist on the level at which it is being put across by Democrats.  In theory, it sounds very good and makes people think that voting for Democrats is the right thing to do.  The problem lies in the fact that not just high earners or conservatives feel that they have a right to keep what they have earned, but so do Liberals (Democrats) and to a much more devious extent, as they willingly suggest that this is not the case.

 

There seems to be a desire to make things fair.  Obama said in his now disputed “you didn’t build that” speech that you don’t work harder than everyone else;  there are plenty of people out there that work hard.  This is absolutely true – there are plenty out there that work hard – yet that does not mean they deserve to be compensated more for the fact that they work hard.  They need to be compensated for the fact that what they do is considered to have a certain value that goes with it.  That is the reality.   If I need people to dig a hole in my backyard, the person that comes with an earth mover will work far less hard than the guy that carries it out scoop by scoop with a shovel and a wheel barrel,  and he will work far less hard that then guy that scoops it up by hand.  A series of decisions went into each one, not the least of which was that one guy decided to take the risk to buy an earth mover to make his job easier and more profitable in the long run.  So the liberal or Democratic idea is to reward this hard working man who hand-scoops dirt by providing him with some way to equate the services he has access to with the guy who has the dirt mover.  The way to do that is to more heavily tax the guy with the dirt mover.  The funny thing though is that the guy scooping dirt by hand will be happy to get these additional services but the guy with the wheel barrel is most happy that the guy with the earth mover is paying extra taxes to help the hand scooper.  Mind you – he does not pay extra taxes – but is more than willing to advocate the taxing of the earth mover because they feel better about the fact that they are helping the hand scooper while keeping their shovel and wheel barrel.  They are good people because they are concerned about the hand scooper.  Now if the hand scooper and the wheel barrel guy go bid on the same job – I can guarantee you that the wheel barrel guy will not pull away so that the hand scooper can get the job.

 

The wheel barrel guy makes decisions everyday placing a higher value on their own life than that of the hand scooper.  They buy a car rather than take the bus and give the hand scooper the difference.  They upgrade their home rather than donate to the homeless shelter, they send their kids to private school rather than use that money to provide meals to the hungry.  Aside from Mother Teresa, I see almost nobody that translates this philosophy into their daily lives.  Yet somehow they feel that it is appropriate to be the judge of when someone else has enough.  Does he really need another car?  Another house?  Why not give that money to the poor?  Do they ever look and say, “Do I need another coat, another shirt, should I pass up that steak?”  Because to some, that is a life of absolute opulence.

 

Let’s take the case of Mitt Romney – are you a better person because you do volunteer work for 10 hours a week and donate 10,000 per year or is he a better person because he does (for example purposes only) no volunteer work and donates 4 million a year?  I can tell you – for the recipients of the donations – I will get 100 % vote for Mitt.  So is it irresponsible of Mitt to enjoy the fruits of his labor as well as donate a tremendous amount of money or is it irresponsible of you for not doing so?  The fault of the Republican Party is that they have not recognized that people want to feel good about themselves and realize that they want to feel like they are doing the “right thing.”  Yet Democrats don’t really look much beyond that to see that the guy who is getting food stamps has been getting food stamps for 20 years but if they get in a program that helps them become more marketable, than they, as well as their heirs, get a chance to move up to the next level.  In some ways there is a desire – and an evil one at that – for the middle class to keep a lower class.  It allows them to feel good about their own social standing as well as feel good about the fact that they are voting to help these people to get better lives – just not as good as theirs.  Is that being overly critical of the middle class?  Not really.  Suppose these wealthy were taxed to the point that they would allow the lower class to have access to private schools and colleges and clothing outlets that provided high end designer cloths as well as subsidized purchases of automobiles to the extent that they are now living better than the middle class.  With no tax increases on the middle class – you would assume that they would be happy to see the lower class start to live well.  That would sadly not be the case.  Suddenly there would be a what about me outcry.  Should there be if you are truly concerned about caring for these people?  This is the truth of human nature.  Republicans (conservatives) must embrace the idea that success is a good thing.  They need to get the message across that they are providing the opportunity for people to better their lives at every level and not keeping people in assigned stations.

 

Democrats fail to see the reality of human nature when they do govern.  If you take away the incentives of success by taxation, regulation and guilt – you take away that motivation for people to do better.  People who have experienced success will typically donate or volunteer.  They will do so with experience and a desire to be effective – unlike the government who does so inefficiently and in a mode of survival rather than one of upward mobility. They suggest that it is best to provide people with things they have not earned – and accordingly take for granted.  When people receive services they have not earned, they do not work as hard to take advantage of them.  When this happens, those providing the services also provide less quality – why work extra hard if you are not appreciated?  This sums up why the free education in the U S is providing lower quality education to an increasingly less educated country.  The measure of success is not always money.  This is very true.  Yet, those who are successful because of other measures like being good family people and providing the best that they could – they typically are not looking for help from government, but opportunity.  Democrats need to govern with the real goals of improving people’s lives – yet they govern with the idea that they need to keep people at a station and penalize those that advance beyond that station by either charging additional taxes or removing additional services.

 

For those of you in the middle class who think this is harsh, ask yourself – when you go out to dinner, do you ever think, “If I just don’t go out to dinner I can provide clothing for a stranger”, or if you do go through a thought process is it, “If I just don’t go out to dinner I can get another coat for my daughter”?.  Does she need another coat – nope.  So if you don’t go through that process every time – and I can guarantee you don’t – then how do you feel justified in suggesting that someone else be forced into that process?  How is it that you getting another coat for your daughter is justifiable, but someone else getting a second luxury home is not?

 

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September 27, 2012:  Obama is Scamming the Elderly

 

The word “hope” always seems to imply something in the future.  The term always seems to have an innocence that keeps it from being associated with experience and unintentionally attaches itself to the young.  The hope that never came about as promised by Obama was never intended to apply to seniors.  The Obama administration sees seniors as nothing more than a voting block to be followed or scared into checking the Democratic box in the upcoming elections.  A harsh statement indeed.  Unfortunately, it is a harsh reality.

 

Let’s start with Obamacare.  The push to get seniors to vote included the promise of lower health care costs, more choices and long term care.  You better contact your representative and let them know you want Obamacare because if not – you will be without care in the future.  While this law was wedged through with bribes and manipulation, little of the promise was kept.  Health care costs are actually projected to be significantly higher not that we have sorted through the 2700 pages of garbage that made up this law.  Choices?  Do you have Medicare Advantage?  Guess what it runs out and you don’t get to have it anymore.  Is this upsetting to seniors – of course it is.  However, it runs out before the election and our scam artist of a President doesn’t want seniors to be informed when voting.  Instead, our President has decided that he will be using just over 8 billion in “experimental program funds” which an independent government office has determined is not experimental at all, but merely a check to fund Medicare Advantage till after the elections so that seniors are not aware that it will be pulled from them shortly thereafter.

 

Don’t worry though my friends.  Obama has made provisions for you for long term care.  Oh but wait, his provisions were not budgeted for – no surprise with no budget, so this was quietly dropped from Obamacare.  Yes, for many of you – you heard it first here.  On the back pages of newspapers and silently mentioned in news reports was the fact that long term care was so poorly budgeted and calculated that it could not sustain itself for more than two years at a paltry ten dollars per day.  That’s right – a program that was part of the fabric of Obamacare, that was a big selling point to seniors, which provided some peace of mind for the elderly – dropped.  The bang not heard around the world as it was so lightly covered.  Both these actions are not merely calculation mistakes – they are morally bankrupt decisions based on the desire to get votes.  That Florida is a battleground state and has a large senior population probably has given our President reason to feel that he can spend 8 billion unbudgeted, unjustified dollars.  Now that Obamacare was passed – we can also not take back those votes that promised long term care.  These decisions are quite easy for a man that barely acknowledges the existence of the mother that raised him alone.  Seniors – they are way off the list.

 

Many seniors are reluctant to spend money as they way to leave something for their kids and grandkids.  Give them a chance for a head start.  With benefits eroding and costs rising and no long term care as promised – this is becoming increasingly impossible.  In fact, many may have to look to their kids for assistance.  Not something that they want to do.  They are told vote for Obama because the Republicans want to take away your social security, they want to take away your Medicare.  Yet, it is Obama that passed the payroll tax cut that further removes money from a program that is already underfunded.  Remember the idea was that by allowing a tax cut – there would be more revenue available to stimulate the economy.  I am quite confused by this because on the one hand this is the bill of goods that was sold to America in creating and extending the tax cut, yet the Republican suggestion that lowering taxes will stimulate the economy has been vilified by Obama.  Lets’ face it – this was just another way for Obama to get votes.  The proposed higher taxes that amount to a rain drop in the Ocean, have been spent so many times on so many programs by Obama that it must be magical money.  The reality is that Social security and Medicare are set to go bankrupt and as independent government offices have shown, at a much faster pace than anyone projected.  In response, Obama has not released a budget so that there is nothing to show seniors that there is no way that social security will be there for them or the heirs they can no longer help.  Instead, there is the attack on the solution in the Ryan budget that makes hard choices but addresses the problem.  It is certainly a good thing that Joe Biden has assured us that Obama has a big stick because he will need it to point to the chart that shows how far in the red the administration is running the deficit.

 

It is truly disgraceful to look at seniors as voting blocs instead of people and preying on fears and making false promises to get their votes.  Under his watch we have seen GSA, Secret Service, Fast and Furious and an attack on the Supreme Court.  A review of campaign headquarters shows that Obama has been campaigning non-stop since the last election.  Employing the very latest in cutting edge technology to scam the seniors that have the most at risk.  If there is any doubt about the feeling of this administration regarding seniors – look to Harry Reid, who said, “Seniors love getting junk mail.  It is their way of staying in touch”.

 

President Obama – never forget – our seniors are old enough to know better.

 

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April 16, 2012:  Obama’s roots – “The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree”

 

Barack Obama is black.  Actually he is half white and half black.  He rarely mentions the white side though it was his white mother that raised him without the help of his father who was a wife-beater, a drunk and a bigamist.

– A wife-beater?

– A drunk?

– A bigamist?

And Barrack Obama worshipped his father.   I am not suggesting that Obama is any of these.  In fact on all these accounts he has exhibited only the best behavior and intentions.  Yet, like the choice of Joe Biden for Vice-President – one has to really question his worshipping of his father and his almost intentional avoidance of anything to do with the mother who raised him alone and without a father’s support provided him with the self-confidence and work ethic that led to his success.  At his core – is he really the defender of women’s rights or is this just the latest political hot button that he thinks he can exploit? The women who have spoken strongly on behalf of Obama seem to have overlooked these clear warning signs.   Actions and respect, not just words will eventually gain the intelligent woman’s vote!!!

 

Accepting the influence of his father was not enough (since he basically abandoned him) but at least he had the right friends – people who loved America

 

Barrack Obama spent his formative years  with  people who have benefitted hugely from this country and have properly expressed their gratitude to it –  like Derek Bell and Jeremiah Wright .

 

Derek Bell:

“We live in a system that espouses merit, equality and a level playing field but exalts things like wealth, power and celebrity, however gained”

 

Examples (mine): We exalt Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Martin Luther King Jr, Steve Jobs, Warren Buffett, Ronald Reagan, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr, Mike Wallace and, of course, Bernie Madoff (do we really honor him?).  I guess it is hard to draw the line between high profile and high respect when you are trying to make a point.  I suppose this is why the many young blacks that get murdered by their own every day go unnoticed – but suddenly a death has relevance when killed by a person of another race.  This is the most racist comment of all.

 

Jeremiah Wright (Barrack Obama’s pastor for 20 years – that’s right, 20years!!!):

 

“The Government gave them the drugs, builds bigger prisons, passes three-strike laws and wants them to say: God Bless America! No! No! No! God Damn America”

 

 

“Hilary is married to Bill and Bill has been good to us. No he ain’t. Bill did us, just like he did Monica Lewinsky.” (Do my liberal friends believe this?)

 

“The Government lied about inventing the HIV virus as a means of genocide against people of color. The Government lied.” (Does ANYONE believe this – besides Jeremiah Wright, Rosie O’donnell and, perhaps, Barrack Obama? Any REASONABLE person?)

 

“Barrack knows what it means living in a country and a culture that is controlled by rich, white people. Hillary would never know that.” (This evil country dominated by ‘rich, white people’ voted Barrack Obama – a community organizer – to be President of the United States. Why do you think they did that???)

 

And he had ties to Acorn ( a subject for another day).

 

And he got his tactics from Saul Alinsky (another subject for another day).

 

Playing the race card

Barrack Obama got into Harvard without the ordinary high standards required for that University, was mostly an unimpressive student and was still offered a position as a Professor.  At this point, I would imagine that anyone reading this is already feeling a bit uncomfortable – identifying me as being politically incorrect at best and racist at worst.   Herein lies a problem.  I am an American of East Indian descent.  If someone doesn’t know me and is looking for me, they may be directed by someone pointing to me and saying “he’s the Indian guy right there “.  No hesitation, no uncomfortable thought process – just the Indian guy right there.  I am sure the words  ‘ short ‘ or  ‘ could lose a few pounds ‘   may also be used, but would likely be stated in the same tone and volume as  ‘ Indian ‘.  On the other hand, when describing a black person, it seems that there is an effort by ‘politically correct’ people to avoid the word  ‘ black ‘ .  If it is said, it is said in a lower volume – as if the description is somehow wrong  and  (God forbid) he might even overhear me .  Trust me – he knows he is black.  The effort to not be painted with the brush of racism has made what is clearly a person’s most visible distinctive feature something that may be considered offensive to say.  A quick translation tells you that the reluctance to use the word black in the description means that you believe that either it has a negative connotation or you feel that others may believe it has a negative connotation and you are somehow sharing that  opinion by pointing it out.

 

How the mainstream media ‘vetted’ the President

Calling or not calling someone ‘black’ would be an unimportant observation, except for the fact that Barack Obama just happens to be a President of the United States running for re-election.  Had any other nominee stated his experience in the private sector as “community organizer”, most people would  have said  – what the heck is that?  Is that what social workers are called these days – akin to ‘janitors’  becoming  ‘sanitation engineers’ ?  He was admitted to Law School – at Harvard, mind you – despite being an unspectacular student.  If this had been Mitt Romney,  the assumption would  have been  that dad paid his way in and it would certainly have come out in the press.  Nobody will say that Obama was admitted in an effort to provide equal opportunities to people of different races.  Again, not a big deal – but the man is the President.   John Kerry was buried for the manipulated swiftboat story that lampooned his campaign. Yet the truth about Obama’s history with Jeremiah Wright has been brushed under the rug.  He has faced less pressure from the press and late night TV hosts such as Jay Leno than any President before him.  He lied to the American people regarding the debt negotiations and it was  reported as a mere footnote in the  media.  It is not so much that nothing sticks to this President as that nothing much gets thrown at him .   And although he has come under (subdued) attack for the policies that he has put in place – for gas prices, for jobs and for the economy – the stupidity of Solyndra, GSA, Fast and Furious, Obamacare and the war on the Supreme Court have been met with arguments (and sympathetic understanding) as opposed to the usual cutting jokes from comedians and devastating comments from the mainstream media.  Is there still racism in America? Yes there is.   But hugely less than there was – and best resolved now by equal treatment.

 

Mitt Romney has the qualifications, the experience and the achievements to be President

 

Mitt Romney is white.  He grew up wealthy.  He attended the best schools and had a father that ran for the Presidential nomination.  He has likely never wondered if he could pay the rent, never wondered what it would be like to be on unemployment, never wondered if there was a way he could go to a better school.  Mitt Romney grew up in a stable family home.  He has not cheated on his wife, he has not committed a crime and he has been a huge success in high profile events like the Olympics and has had independent success after donating the massive fortune left him by his father, to make an even more massive fortune on his own – from scratch.  He lives the life of opportunity and success that is, for many, the American Dream.  In what has become an odd turn of events, Mitt Romney is somehow being made to explain away his wealth and success.  Wasn’t there a time that these were considered positives?  Yes, at Bain Capital he purchased companies and sold off the ones that were unable to survive and rebuilt the ones that were salvageable.  In the companies  that were sold and closed , people lost jobs . But the reality is that those jobs and businesses were not sustainable  – and would have been lost anyway.   What is far more important are the companies (and jobs) that he saved, making way in some cases for huge expansions. We are faced with a budget that is not sustainable.  We are faced with a turnaround project on a size and scale that has never been witnessed before.   We will need cuts and painful decisions to be made.   We will need choices  to be made between energy and environmental causes, between social programs and sustainability, between spending and safety and between entitlements and opportunities.  When a bad decision is made in the private sector – the fall out is both severe and immediate.  When a bad decision is made in  Government –  you can always blame Bush.  Mitt Romney has to answer for Romneycare.  Mitt Romney has to have an answer for illegal immigration.  Mitt Romney has to clarify what the details of the Ryan budget will entail.  Mitt Romney has to answer to or make allocations for social issues.  Mostly – Mitt Romney has to lead a country out of our present mess by creating revenue, cutting waste, making unpopular decisions and creating a healthy business environment that will get people working again and will give people once again an opportunity for the American Dream  – while letting people know that the programs they are contributing to now will be there  for those who really need them.  He needs to compete against other countries that are not playing by the same rules.  I don’t know about you – but the want ad for the next President  is not one that should be filled by someone with a resume as a community organizer , a successful campaigner and a failed Presidency.  Quite the opposite – it seems that Mitt walked up with a skill set almost ideally crafted to solve the problems with which the next resident will be confronted.

 

And he has the character to fulfill his Presidential duties with honor and integrity

 

Mitt Romney grew up with opportunities that most of us never had.  He grew up with wealth that most of us have never seen.  He got an education most of us would never get.  He is on track to run for an office that most of us will never even try for.   But he has character. At a time when he did not have great wealth, he inherited a good bit of money from his father. BUT, AS I HAVE SAID ABOVE, HE GAVE IT ALL TO CHARITY. And, as far as I know, he continues to give to charity on a scale unmatched by anyone with his wealth. All the money he owns now is what he earned himself. Don’t dismiss the man’s qualifications because he is rich.   He needs to be emulated – not envied.

 

Barack Obama was given opportunities that he would not have gotten if he was not black, he has been given a pass on his failures that he would not have been given if he were not black.  Now the man who has run on hope and change and not resume and substance must  not run – if he, too, has character, as a black President – he must run simply as President.  He must not only face the questions of what he has done since becoming President.   He must also answer honestly and with integrity the questions of his upbringing and past mentors.  He just cannot continue to say that he did not know the thinking of someone who was his pastor for 20 years. (Very dishonest or very obtuse, don’t you think?)

 

My origins are East Indian and, no, I am not a racist no matter what Janeane Garofalo might say.

 

I have personally adjusted my words in this repeatedly to see if I could get my message across without sounding racist.  My concerns are telling me that deep down I am worried that I may be racist or perceived as racist and my brain  – and my heart – are telling me that nothing I have said here is wrong and that  I have said  nothing here  that should not be said.   Once you have achieved the highest office in the land, you have achieved a goal and a status that very few will ever achieve.  You have accomplished beyond what even the most pedigreed would hope to accomplish.  You have transcended race, creed and color and you should be prepared to be evaluated on your merits. And you should expect America to subject you to the same abuse and brutality that it has heaped on every person that has aspired to that office – or to its re-election.

 

Derek Bell’s rare words of cautionary wisdom  

 “Power in the hands of the reformer is no less potentially corrupting than in the hands of the oppressor.”

 

 And MY final words of wisdom

When all is said and done – we need not look at black or white or rich or poor.   We need to strip all that away and match up the task at hand with the men who want the job.  We need to look at what we will face in the next four years and who is equipped to address the immediate needs and determine the path that America wants to be on.  Americans need to decide who we are, what we have become and what we want to be.  There is a quote at the end of the movie Wall Street by Lou Mannheim “Man looks in the abyss, there’s nothing staring back at him. At that moment, man finds his character. And that is what keeps him out of the abyss”.  America needs to find its character.

 

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March 30, 2012:  Obama the Politician

When Barack Obama burst on the scene with his keynote speech and was heralded as a rising star in the Democratic Party and all of us were watching his meteoric rise – one couldn’t help but feel that he was an accomplished politician.  He spoke well, dressed well, had a good sense of humor and had a message.  He had a message that America was ready to receive – a message of hope and change.  We had just completed 8 years of George Bush (and I believe history will show him to be a much better President that he has been given credit for) and people were ready for change.  This change was not to come in the form of Hilary Clinton who had the problem of being lumped in with the establishment in Washington and has always suffered from a likeability problem.  The Republicans, countered with John McCain – who also represented more of the same.  His “Maverick” personality was betrayed by his years in office and his failure to be able to energize the party and his pulling in of Sarah Palin was too little too late and for her – in some ways – too much too fast.  For Obama – he would be the one to carry the torch and for the Republicans – it would be left to the V P to stir the base.  Sarah Palin was a highly popular Governor with a record of solid accomplishment in Alaska but  her style was not guarded enough for the National Stage and minor comments were turned into major gaffes.  She has since refined her comments and has been looked at as a true leader while McCain has drifted into la-la land and is that unwanted relative that shows up at all the family events.

 

Obama had the luxury of having very little history.  He didn’t vote very often in the Senate and mainly complained about the current administration (mostly about things that have come to be failures in his own administration like the raising of the debt ceiling and the price of gas).  He didn’t go through the normal process of the rattling of old closets for skeletons that most candidates face and the few things that turned up were related to race issues and in a strange attempt at political correctness – nobody really went after the issues.   Hilary Clinton felt they were not good to bring up in the primaries for fear of losing votes and the Republicans were not energized enough by McCain to put him through what would be the ordinary process of review – emphasizing more of his radical views that would come to later shape his policy.  For his part, Obama attracted Hollywood, he was the cool pick.  He ran a campaign based on a delicious candy coating, but nobody knew what was inside.  Ironically Forrest Gump did the voice over for his 17 minute commercial and he was at least right about one thing – “you never know what you’re gonna get.”   The thing he did masterfully was just throw out that message of hope and change and each person was left to think that what they wanted would be in that hope and change.   Few voters really took the time to see what was inside.  The problem was – that he actually won.  Now he had to create policies that matched up with the expectations he created.

 

This is where Obama the real politician came out.  A man who had never run an organization of any size, a man who got into Harvard with sub-par grades, who voted rarely in the Senate, did little towards any meaningful legislation and cut his teeth as a critic of the opposition – but now he was the one being held accountable.  He had control in the first two years and had momentum on his side.  The smart thing to do would have been to immediately address unemployment and the economy.  Instead, Obama decided to tackle health care.  Why – because he wanted a signature issue to stamp his Presidency.  Why – because he has a ridiculously huge ego and arrogance that were seen as confidence and composure on the campaign trail.  As he began to govern – it became apparent that he was incredibly thin skinned.  He would go to the public again and again and make speeches because he was unable to work with people in his own party and across the aisle.  When they pushed back on the bully – he began to cry.  He didn’t address the problem – he whined to the public, he blamed everyone else.  As his history shows, he has always been defensive, always been angry, always gravitated to the radical and tried to insight anger in a large group as a manner to deal with issues.  The health care bill was wildly unpopular, squeaking through on bribes for votes.  It has been an unmitigated disaster.  The unknown costs have stagnated growth in business unwilling to expand for fear of what could be a huge expense that nobody can put a number on.  It gives you that same uneasy feeling you have when you are presented a menu with no prices.  Despite the huge turnover in Congress just two years in – Obama failed to see the light.  When he felt that Fox news was reporting too many of his fumbles, he threatened to shut them down.  He has surrounded himself with a group of sheep, instead of quality people.  He is like the coach that does not hire good assistants so he has job security.  Just a few highlights of his team: Carney seems to be making up what he says as he goes along. You can almost hear circus music in the background and see someone juggling while he speaks.  Wasserman just flat out looks like insane and this is before she opens her mouth to remove any doubt.    Axelrod has the greasy look of a man that just ate a bucket of KFC with no hands and give off vibes of a car salesman trying to sell you the Chevy Volt (and indirectly- he is).  Eric Holder is the poster boy for reverse discrimination, and doesn’t even have the decency or intelligence to try and cover up his failures and energy secretary Chu looks like he gets his shirts tailored by the same guy that dresses Ron Paul and that is by far the biggest compliment he can be paid.  Add in V P Biden who is truly an embarrassment – so incompetent that Osama Bin Laden had a plan in place to assassinate Obama – just so that Biden would run the country.  What is worse for Obama –is that Biden will now be on active display in the upcoming election and that has to be as welcome as Billy Carter was to brother Jimmy.

 

His arrogance and his ego have not only led him to be surrounded by bad choices, but have led him to make bad choices.  Americans are upset about high gas prices.  Response – Going on tour and talking  about an “all of the above” energy policy.  Defending what Americans have already determined is garbage – Going as far as to say “hey Solyndra was not mine”.  A return to the blame game.  Not stopping there however; Killing two birds with one stone and throwing in Obamacare as something to be proud of.  Also wildly unpopular, with costs rocketing and benefits dropping even before full implementation as well as the challenges it is creating for religious organizations.  The wise move would be to kneel down with the Reverend Jeremiah Wright and pray the Supreme Court strikes down your bill.  Back away slowly and then run as fast as you can.   Instead – ego steps in again and he’s on tour stating how great this is and how Republicans will be sorry they labeled it Obamacare because it will be so successful.  Does he realize that we aren’t talking about Reaganomics.  This is Obamacare.  Sadly- some are saying that touting these issues are his best way of avoiding talking about the economy – which speaks volumes about the economy.  The way the Supreme Court questioning went, it would seem that at least the individual mandate will be struck down as unconstitutional.  Yes that same mandate that Obama decried when running in the primaries against Hilary Clinton.  Isn’t anyone going to wonder how so much effort was put into a bill that may violate that little used document – the Constitution.

 

Obama must run on his record now.  This time, he has a history.  Republicans should not shy about pointing out his failures.   The press is being dragged kicking and screaming into reporting on his failures.  The questions being posed by reporters are harsher and his responses are becoming sarcastic.  The arrogance of the “billion dollar war chest” inspired Republican donors, deterred Democratic donors, and has fallen way short.  Ego announced it.  Actions by the people denounced it.  Ego led to poor interactions on the tarmac in Arizona and at a meeting with Bobby Jindhal.  His comments on Trayvon Martin were overblown by Republicans Gingrich and Santorum.  However, they lacked the requisite footnote of “innocent till proven guilty” and support for the justice system, and as details are emerging, it seems that this was not a hate crime.  Of course his distaste for the justice system came with the public chastising he gave the Supreme Court for the Citizens United decision in his State of the Union address.   Decorum dictated that this was not the venue for such commentary and was not received well by the Justices.  There are still three branches of government and only one of them has lifetime appointments.    His desire to push back at Rush Limbaugh had little to do with Ms. Fluke and more to do with the comments made by Rush about Obama.  Unfortunately, without the pass that he was given in the past, he was put under fire for Bill Maher.  His friends from Hollywood are hardly as high profile this time around and the Republican Party has picked up their own Hollywood support that is becoming more vocal.  His old videos berating George Bush on gas prices seem oddly comical now that he says he has no control.  Even people like Warren Buffet seem to be keeping their distance.  After all – he has an ego too – and he hates to be wrong.  Obama has twice now put people’s  lives at risk with both Israel and Russia – being caught saying he would do the “unpopular” if they hold off till after the election.  Imagine – putting his own re-election ahead of the safety of innocent lives.  How does it play with the leaders of these countries that non-American lives mean so little compared to his return to power? Not really conveying that international image he had talked about so much.   He told Americans that anybody who says we are not on a recovery doesn’t know what they are talking about.  Doesn’t he know that a large majority of Americans say they are worse off than they were 4 years ago.  Why?  Because the stimulus package had to have worked – after all, it had his name on it.  He doesn’t exhibit the leadership needed to make the tough decisions.  The truth regarding how he backed away from the agreed deal that would have made up the grand bargain because he got butterflies bespeaks a man devoid of leadership skills.

 

Quick to take credit for things he had nothing to do with and quick to lay blame for things he did.  These are the signs of an immature man more interested in his own image than in achieving his ideals. “ The buck stops here” and “give credit where credit is due” are two phrases that have eluded the man in the Oval Office.  At this rate, you will soon see the return of Snickers Bars to the vending machines at the White House.  They will be delivered just as soon as the moving van with” Chicago or Bust” clears out of the driveway.

 

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March 19, 2012:  Making Foreign Aid a “Win-Win”

There is an ongoing struggle with the issue of foreign aid.  As a humanitarian cause, it is something that in theory we all support.  As the struggles economically here at home have expanded, many have felt it best to help Americans first.  The problem for many is that even our poorest Americans are living in better conditions than many of the people who we provide aid.  We also have no control over the money once it is given and the general feeling is that more ends up in the hands of government and less in the hands of those we were intending to help.  We also begrudge those nations our assistance when they don’t support us on other issues, though we really can’t evaluate the full extent of their decisions as we can hardly agree on our own.  How then do we settle this problem?

 

I believe we can resolve this issue while at the same time solving some additional problems as well.  What these countries need is infrastructure, education and jobs.  Teach them to be independent and they will eventually rise above their poverty rather than continually having to wait for a hand out with little hope of ever gaining traction.  This sounds eerily similar to the situation with welfare, but that is for another time.  What these countries do have in ample supply is population.  Population to third world countries equates to problems.  Population to companies equates to workers.   Have U S Corporations set up shop in these countries.  The fear has always been that they will be faced with changes in leadership or regulations or corrupt government officials that will make it impossible to conduct business.  What I propose is that the U S make a treaty with the government in question and have them sign a lease for the company that sets standards for regulations, for business conduct and for government interaction.    This will provide a safe venue for corporations to build.  The result of this will be jobs and infrastructure paid for by private companies that will be capitalizing on lower cost abundant labor and natural resources.  For the country granting these leases they have two major benefits – payroll taxes that can flow to the government and workers who now have spendable income.  Tax revenues equate to additional infrastructure, schools and higher living standards.  Take this program one step further.  The companies setting up in these countries will not pay corporate taxes – in the country they are residing – they will pay the tax here in the U S.  Those complaining of U S Companies not paying tax on world income will now see them paying taxes here while still effectively providing developing countries with foreign aid at no cost to the U S – just revenue.

 

The term of the lease for these companies to operate will be calculated based on their investment in the country.  At the end of the term, the country will have the option to impose updated regulations and the company will have the choice of leaving or staying.  The side benefit that comes with this, of course, is that as people become educated and have access to information, they embrace opportunity and freedom and as a result they do not readily accept the rampant corruption that often exists in these governments.  The added benefit is that as these countries become better off, they open the doors for the next level of U S Companies to come in and build.  It is, in many ways, a way to bring about a turbo-charged industrial revolution with the hindsight of having gone through one.  It is a way to build an ongoing expansion project that will house companies of increasingly higher levels starting with simple goods and eventually leading to technological ones and all the while both countries will be receiving tax dollars and the U S will maintain its desire to help those abroad with the bonus of eliminating government corruption in one country while eliminating red tape in the other.  Of course, with the current administration in the U S, it could be a question of which country has more red tape and which has more corruption.  Most importantly, it will, from the start, provide the poor in these countries with a work ethic and the dignity of a pay check and a better life rather than standing in line for food and hoping that it comes.  It is sinful to not help make these people self-reliant and provide them to a path of independence.  Hopefully, if this is instituted in our foreign policy, it will come full circle and be instituted in our domestic one as well.  Ahhhh – the welfare system – need for reform – but a topic for another day.

 

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March 16, 2012:  The Immigration Solution

Immigration is a volatile subject and one in which both parties have missed the mark.  The Democrats have a revolving door approach that does little to deter illegal immigration, nothing to encourage legal immigration and rewards behavior that is not within the law with Amnesty.  They further not only do not enforce laws that are on the books, but seem to be working to deter attempts to identify those who have broken the law.  On the other hand, the Republican party has become so dug in with trying to stop illegal immigration, that they are taking little or no responsibility for the loose borders that have created the problem in the first place and the poor enforcement of regulations that have perpetuated it.  They have proposed, and logically so, that foreign students who have come to the U S for an education and graduate with degrees that are in shortage be given a “green card with their diploma.”   I have not seen a logical argument that would not allow for instituting the law immediately.  In the case of those already here, the solution of deporting anyone here illegally is simplistic in that many have been here for years and have family and roots in the community and have been allowed to live and work here in part due to our negligence in enforcing regulations.  While the act is illegal, the objective in coming to this country was what nearly all our families before us felt in coming to this country, an opportunity to build a better life and provide for their families.  As the party that places the highest regard on family and family values, it is contrary to core values to pull these families apart.  A very successful hybrid of various programs can be created that will achieve several goals and be fair to all.

 

I would suggest that workers here illegally would have to immediately register under a documented worker program.  They would be issued a taxpayer identification number that would be used in place of a social security number.  They would be able to work, but with the caveat that there would be an additional tax that would be paid for life of a reasonable amount, say 5 % that would be an ongoing penalty for the illegal entry into the country.  The TIN could be revoked for non-payment of taxes as well as revoked for criminal activity and normal laws would be enforced.  What this would accomplish, in conjunction with an E-Verify program that would impose harsh penalties on violating employers, is having all workers contribute taxes and therefore be eligible for many of the benefits being currently received on a tax-free basis.  It also allows the future generations that were born here the same citizenship rights that now exists and eliminates the question of deporting illegal parents of kids that were born here.  The immediate question becomes, what about all those who are in line for legal immigration – are they not now being penalized for having gone through the process?  The answer is no – if we allow them the same opportunity to pay the penalty to move to the front of the line and get immediate acceptance.  Those that would be willing to wait for acceptance and avoid that penalty would be able to go through the normal process.  Since most are coming here for future generations, I believe that many would be willing to pay the premium.

 

At the same time, we must close the borders, build the fence and enforce the laws.  These parts combined make the problem of immigration solvable and palatable to everyone.  Those who do not register can, and should, face the full extent of the laws on the books and Amnesty should be taken away as a future option.  In a somewhat ironic turn of events, many of those workers who apply to be documented and who agree to pay the premium could very well work on building that fence.   Let’s take responsibility for our own failures in securing the borders and enforcing laws, make America once again truly the land of opportunity and restore dignity to the many families that have come here to make a better life for themselves and future generations, but let’s do so in a manner that removes the high costs associated with the benefits of citizenship and have workers be provided a path to documentation that takes into account the manner in which entry to the country was obtained.

 

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March 14, 2012:  Obama’s Deception

Politicians on both sides of the fence lie. You can call it politics, you can call it a change in stance or many times there is either a genuine change of opinion, a desire to bow to the wishes of those you were elected to represent or even a compromise where you hold your nose and say yes to one thing to get something else through of greater importance to your political agenda. These compromises and changes are usually made within the framework of what is believed to be the political ideology of either party – being it liberal ideas or conservative ideas. While we are quick to point out the changes in position of the other side, there is always some understanding that these changes were to accommodate some part of a political agenda believed to be in the best interests of the American people. While in many instances you can disagree with the decision, you can certainly follow the ideology.

Never have I found a President whose goals were so out of line with the ideology of either party or the interests of America as a country as President Obama. President Obama is not proud of this country, of its history, of its strength or of its greatness. He instead sees the U S as a country that is arrogant, wealthy and uncaring. One that uses more than their fair share of natural resources and who as a whole live far too well. While many see him as a socialist because of his ideas of class warfare and uneven taxation to create one massive middle class, what has been severely overlooked is that this middle class is not what you and I have come to know as a middle class. He is systematically creating scenarios which will eventually result in a government-controlled population that looks to Washington for how to live, how to eat, how to drive and eventually how to think. A middle class that does not live at the standards of today but one that lives far below the standards of today and relies on government to set that standard.

 

Let’s take a quick look at what we see as some basic problems and how what seems like a reasonable response is actually a systematic effort to create a different America. The stated goal of Obama was to raise energy prices to levels that would make his alternative energy packages viable. This was clearly stated in several videos of both Obama and Energy Secretary Chu. The idea being, once gas prices become prohibitive, once electricity prices become prohibitive – then alternate energy that he has been pushing becomes cost effective. This is because Obama feels that the U S uses too much of the world’s fossil fuels and we don’t have the right to do so, that we should drive smaller cars, take the bus more, car pool – generally reduce the standard of living we are used to. Now, when prices have become an issue, these statements are not only being taken back, they are being made to sound ridiculous as Obama said why would I want gas prices to go up in an election year? The truth is, he just didn’t want it to become an issue in an election year. What he says now is that the President has very little control over gas prices and everybody knows it. What he said when he was on the rise and planning his Presidential run was that President Bush was in control of these gas prices and he has let them get out of control and it is hurting the American people. This suggests one of two possibilities – the first being that President Obama is flat out lying and is stating he has no control over these gas prices because he wants to push his alternative energy program and still stay in office. The alternate suggestion is that President Bush had a much more sophisticated grasp of energy policy and the economy and accordingly, he could have an effect on gas prices – but President Obama has no such skill set. Neither is an acceptable position for the President to be in.

 

We look to the issue of contraception. While there is a clear issue with the trampling of religious freedoms, there is another issue that has been rarely discussed. When does a President have the right to tell an insurance company what they must provide and further what they must provide for free? It is well within the realm of possibility that drug prices will be set under the health care bill. In fact, few believe that this will not be the case. Here is where things get a little sticky. Rick Santorum was asked about the high cost of a drug by a lady who said she can’t afford it and that her son will die without it. His response was a harsh reality but a truth that Obama refuses to address. He said, I honestly feel for you and your situation, but if we force drug companies to set price limits on what they can charge, there is no incentive for them to engage in research to cure existing ailments such as cancer or new ones that we have yet to encounter. The greatest developments in these areas have come not from government funded research but from private companies. It is more than disingenuous to sell the country on a health care bill not knowing if there will be available medication to cure sickness. In that area, we again look to the health care bill and see that when pushing for it to go through the elderly were promised long term care. Months ago this was just lopped of the bill quietly as a feature that was too expensive. After getting their support, he abandoned them. Why did this happen? It happened because mathematically they found that long term care at just $ 10.00 per day per person could not be sustained for a period of more than two years. Again, you have the scenarios of he was lying or he was so drastically off on his calculations that he is unqualified to put such a bill into practice.

 

Most recently, you have seen the flip flop in regards to Israel. When running for office the support for Israel was unquestioned. The support for Israel of course came with financial support for his campaign. Immediately after coming to office he turned his back on Israel in a systematic and insulting fashion. Now, facing dropping numbers in the polls and loss of campaign contributions there is a sudden renewed friendship with Israel culminating in reports that Obama promised advanced weapons that not even George Bush would provide (the war monger that he was made out to be) in return for not attacking Iran till after the election. His speeches regarding the cavalier attitude with which the Republicans support Israel in a war effort ring hollow when the price of these lives to the Obama administration is merely votes. These revelations should not come as any surprise. The Breitbart video that has been somewhat brushed aside showing Obama asking fellow students to open their hearts and minds to the ideas of Professor Bell (who he remained close with till his death a year ago) are best revealed in the science fiction story by Dr. Bell in which he suggested that when faced with an overwhelming deficit, that white Americans would sell black Americans to aliens as slaves as the Jews stood by and let it happen.

 

The constant apologies for America, the First Lady’s programs telling people what they should eat, the meeting with the Catholic Bishops regarding contraception and the White House in which the White House told the Catholic Bishops, that they (the Bishops) should get a better grasp of the Catholic religion by following the lead of more enlightened Catholic groups is a reminder of the arrogance of this President and the degree of control he feels he can exercise. There is of course the hypocrisy of attacking Rush Limbaugh while accepting support from Bill Maher – when both have been guilty of the same inappropriate comments regarding women. And, there is the beyond hypocrisy of the constant talk of closing the loopholes for corporate jet owners that seems to be coming from the Republicans when in fact the loopholes for corporate jet owners were created in Obama’s stimulus package – an entirely Democratic proposition. The idea that voter fraud does not exist and to force identification would be discriminatory against the poor, when photo identification is required to collect welfare makes no sense. Yet, it has been proven and admitted that Obama made it into a primary with forged signatures.

 

It is one thing to do what you can to make America embrace a more liberal agenda. It is quite another to run on that platform while all the while your intention is to install your own agenda that changes the very fabric of this country.

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© 2012 by David Bleidistel.  All rights reserved.