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January 10, 2012

Left-leaning summary of Bain and Holson Burns

Today was the New Hampshire Primary, and Mitt Romney won big. But this also marks only a very few days since Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry started attacking Romney's work at Bain Capital from a perspective more suited to a class warrior like President Barack Obama than someone who claims to be a fiscal conservative who understands capitalism.

On Sean Hannity's show tonight, Rick Perry went so far as to bring up Gaffney SC as an example of what he called "vulture capitalism."

I looked it up, and while I'm sure there are more details to be uncovered, at first blush, Perry appears to be completely lost in the weeds.

A vulture, Governor Perry, eats an animal that's already dead. In order for your metaphor not to make you look foolish, the plant that Holson Burns closed in Gaffney would have to have been in operation already, and already in trouble, when Bain made its investment.

Unfortunately for you, the facts appear to be quite different: Bain bought Burns, organized it with Holson, and tried to make it a leading player in the photo album and frame market, with mixed success. The plant in Gaffney would likely never have been built, and the workers never employed in such an industry, had Bain not been trying in good faith to grow a business. They were not operating a charity that might employ people to sell overpriced goods that no one would buy except as a charitable exercise. They were trying to be profitable.

The business fell on hard times in the early nineties, and they had to restructure. That's when the plant in Gaffney was closed.

There was no vulture trying to pick a corpse clean. This was an attempt to nurture and grow a business. It was not perfectly successful, but you have made a grave error by criticising it. You have just indicted any small businessperson who ever hired employees during a boom and then let any of them go when they fell on hard times as "vulture capitalists." If there are any such people in South Carolina (dare I say even in Gaffney?), you will not win their support if they learn the truth about Holson Burns.

March 15, 2009

FactCheck.org article

I just heard Austan Goolsbee on Fox News Sunday repeating a grave distortion of the truth that the Obama team has been retailing for months trying to misrepresent the record of "the last eight years." But he didn't stop there. He actually expanded the scope of the misstatement because he said words to the effect that the Bush recovery was weak and squeezed the middle class by reducing median family income by $2000 per year.

As even FactCheck.org has pointed out long since, there is no measure by which this is true, and, true to form, they were kinder to Obama than he deserved by using 2000 statistics as the benchmark. Check out the last secion of the article linked.

I hope to expand on this point in a more lengthy article, soon.

October 8, 2008

2006 release

In the first Presidential debate on Sept. 26, Obama said the following in a rebuttal of McCain's attack on his weak reaction to the Russian invasion of Georgia:

No. 1 is we have to have foresight and anticipate some of these problems. So back in April, I warned the administration that you had Russian peacekeepers in Georgian territory. That made no sense whatsoever. And what we needed to do was replace them with international peacekeepers and a special envoy to resolve the crisis before it boiled over. That wasn't done. But had it been done, it's possible we could have avoided the issue.

I haven't completed my research, but the claim by Obama that he had discovered something in April that no one knew is, of course, patently ridiculous. The Georgians have been trying to "internationalize" the peacekeeping force since at least 2006, as the linked release demonstrates. The peacekeepers have been there for more than fifteen years, so it is certainly nothing new. I think Obama exposed how little he knows about the history of this issue, and again exposed how little he knows despite his willingness to claim to have figured everything out before anyone else.

September 26, 2008

Summary of Obama's Role in White House Meeting

The media are out in force repeating Obama's and the Democrats' talking points regarding the White House meeting called yesterday to negotiate a deal to rescue the financial markets from the fallout from the mortgage crisis. . According to them, McCain did nothing in the meeting, and somehow that derailed the deal they had already struck.

Of course, there was no deal with the House Republicans, but a few leaders spoke for them out of school. Linked above is a blog entry that tells a fascinating story of how Obama apparently tried to seem like the hero, but all he did was pit the majority against the minority and, surprise of surprises, the minority did not respond well to being railroaded.

Perhaps this is what Obama meant by "Yes, we Can!" "Yes, we can walk in and tell some parties to a negotiation what they are going to agree to. Yes we can step out afterward and blame it on everyone but ourselves."

September 25, 2008

Rocky Mountain News Speakout On the Web

Check out this piece I discovered today. It refers briefly to a few of the problems with Obama's claims to share the values of Middle America. There's a lot more detail here but this is a good, quick summary.

September 8, 2008

Washington Post Outline of 2008 Tax Plans

Obama's tax plan has begun to unravel on him, as evidenced by his recent admission that he may have to reconsider raising taxes on the very rich if the economy is still struggling when he comes into office. It exposes the fact that such tax increases are damaging to the economy, and thus it's not a good idea in general. It leaves him wide open to the accusation that he has flip-flopped again. In short, I'm ecstatic that he said it...

September 3, 2008

Liberal Blog Reporting the Statement

Once again the Democrats have stepped in it. They forgot that attacking a Conservative woman in sexist terms is still a sexist attack. When will they learn the lessons the rest of us have long since learned about not using stereotypical language in attacking their political rivals as Harry Reid's office did in sniping at Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as follows:

"Anyone who knows Senator Reid knows he never backs down when he's fighting for what's right and that he always stands up to John McCain when he is wrong. Shrill and sarcastic political attacks may fire up the Republican base, but they don't change the fact that a McCain-Palin administration would mean four more years of failed Bush-Cheney policies."

Maybe this is the kind of thing Michelle Obama meant when she said this country was "downright mean" ...

August 30, 2008

Full Article

The Democrats are apoplectic trying to blunt the impact of McCain's appointment of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin to be his running mate. I don't think they can avoid exposing again just how unqualified Obama is as they try to assert that she is unqualified.

If they accuse McCain of being irresponsible for appointing someone more qualified than their own headliner, how can they not admit that as a party they have failed the nation by nominating someone less qualified in turn?

April 17, 2008

Apr. 16 Debate Transcript

If these were candidates in my party I would be embarrassed. They made statements in this debate that add up to the following:

You can't predict the future based on clear historical patterns. Presidents have the right to give orders that their subordinates universally declare to them to be foolish. (More importantly, a person who promises to do so would be a good candidate for president. But when George W. Bush ignored the alleged advice of SOME of his subordinates, they would say he was COMPLETELY irresponsible. What a crew of hypocrites...) It is good to raise taxes even if this will reduce revenues, because the tax code is about fairness and social justice, not about paying for massive new entitlement programs.

If one of these nuts ends up elected, our chickens will really be coming home to roost.

March 13, 2008

Read the Report

ABCNews.com today is proudly featuring an article offering the chance to view the allegedly suppressed Pentagon report that acknowledges that an examination of reams and reams of documents recovered from Iraq show no operational ties between Saddam Hussein's regime and al Qaeda. And that is true. But this would have been a more accurate teaser: "Read the report that shows that al Qaeda was virtually the only crew of bloodthirsty murderers with which Saddam Hussein had not established an intimate working relationship."

March 12, 2008

Samantha Power, the national security adviser to Barack Obama's campaign who resigned after calling Hillary Clinton a "monster" in an interview, is an extreme left-wing activist whose policies would be a disaster for our country (and wouldn't effectively relieve the suffering she considers a higher calling for our military than protecting our collective interests worldwide). Read this op-ed in the Investor's Business Daily for more details of this political liability for Obama. We should exploit this in the general election to expose just how extreme and impractical are his beliefs on foreign policy.

A lot of buzz is going around about how much advantage the Democrats have going in to the next election. The data I've seen cited is mostly regarding party affiliation, which currently favors Democrats. I think it likely, though, that this is a residual effect of the anti-Republican backlash of 2006 which hasn't entirely worn off as long as Bush is the big Republican story. But the Democrats are divided between a known quantity and a dream candidate, and the dream candidate is an unknown whose blemishes will become apparent as the days wear on. The Democratic leadership has been completely ineffective and has failed on almost all of their agenda, and have exposed their hostility to security and justice in their inability to pass the Protect America act and other similar legislation. As consciousness of these failures grows when the Republican campaigns hammer them I think their "moderate" and "independent" support will erode significantly. I am feeling more and more optimistic that we will either not lose more ground in the fall, or even gain ground against the failed liberal policies of the Democrats.

March 10, 2008

Newsweek Poll

A couple of choice tidbits come out in a recent poll by Newsweek. First, Reuters did not report on it. It has McCain in a virtual tie with Obama in the head-to-head race. Reuters was very excited about the ABC/Washington Post poll last week that had Obama up by 11 points. But they didn't report on this. And I noted that they had a recent summary of the race, and characterized the three candidates as follows:

Obama was "a first-term lawmaker seen as charismatic yet largely untested."

Clinton is "the tenacious, politically savvy, two-term Democratic Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York."

McCain is "a crusty old politician known for blowing his top."

How's that for fair and balanced coverage? I would say, using the same tone as they used with McCain, that Obama is "a naive hypocrite dining out on the myth of his political purity" and Clinton is "an ambitious, self-important political hack."

Back to the Newsweek poll: Obama beats McCain by one point, 46% - 45% in the poll. But McCain takes first place in the derby to see who would be more prepared to take the 3 a.m. call: "When all voters were asked which of the three candidates they would most trust to take a 3 a.m. call, the largest number pointed to McCain (45 percent), followed by Clinton (27 percent) and Obama (18 percent). Almost a fifth of Clinton's supporters say that they would trust McCain more to take the call."

Furthermore, "[m]any Democrats in the NEWSWEEK Poll said that they would back McCain if their favorite candidate were not the nominee." This bodes well for November...

March 3, 2008

Overnight I published a piece suggesting the Obamawave had crested. Indeed, today the poll averages on RealClearPolitics.com show a distinct movement toward Clinton. This could be interesting...

February 29, 2008

This is a great site for looking into Global Warming: http://wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com/ Anthony Watts is a moderate skeptic and he analyzes the data effectively.

September 11, 2007

Joe Biden is winning converts even among Republicans for his "partition Iraq" proposal. I suppose it must have merit. It worked well in the Balkans, after all. The Bosnian muslims and Croatians and Serbs had trouble getting along, so they just split into three states. Neat and simple, and everyone was happy. Oh, wait... There were Serbs living in Bosnia and Croats living in Serbia and Muslims living in Croatia, and these minorities didn't just voluntarily pick up and go "home" to the new homeland. Hmmm.

I wonder if the Sunnis of Kurdistan or the Shiites of Anbar or the Sunnis of the south of Iraq will leave more willingly when we forcibly partition their nation.

I wonder if, when racial tensions erupted in the U.S., any liberals suggested we should just create Black cities and Hispanic cities and White cities and Asian cities to reduce the tension.

Only a Democrat (and a "moderate" Republican) could try to make Jim Crow, by another name, smell sweet.

August 1, 2007

I happened to be following Jim Lehrer's News Hour in recent days and found it interesting that, among all the negative stories he reported about Iraq, he failed to mention some significant facts. First, he neglected to mention, when he tallied the total U.S. casualties in Iraq for July, that it was the lowest total in eight months. He also failed to mention that there are two left-of-center pundits who have been critical of the President's handling of Iraq who have now published in the New York Times their opinion that the surge is turning the situation in Iraq and may indeed make victory possible.

July 24, 2007

Today Democratic Congressional Leaders patted each other on the back for delivering on one of their 8 or 10 campaign commitments, 200 days into the 100 days, sporting their lowest public approval ratings in history. And we learn from a report in the Washington Post taken from Rowan Scarborough's latest book that the Dubai Ports World deal that the Republican Congress should have left alone would have given us unprecedented access to intelligence at ports all over the world. Nice job, guys.

July 14, 2007

The Democratic Congress has its lowest approval numbers ever, 9 points lower than the vilified G.W. Bush, matching the numbers the Republican Congress put up before being trounced in the election of 2006. Perhaps they ought to stop criticizing the Iraqi parliament for its inaction and stop looking for smoking guns where there can't be any guns (the President can't be accused of crimes for executing his constitutional authority to grant pardons and hire and fire U.S. attorneys, so why bother investigating unless it is simply a McCarthyite witch hunt--something Democrats and liberals are supposed to oppose). Maybe if this Congress could accomplish something it could get away with pointing out other legislatures' failures.

June 8, 2007

Paul Harvey has some nerve. Like so many liberals who advocate embryonic stem cell research as though human embryos were not human and alive, and as if someone cannot reasonably believe that there are any rights to be weighed, he implied in his news commentary today that President Bush must be a cold-hearted person. After all, said Harvey, there are many medical professionals who believe that embryonic stem cells can save lives and relieve suffering.

Be fair, Paul. How many infants would you be willing to kill to eradicate cancer from the world altogether? How many? To relieve the suffering and premature death of millions of people, how many infants would you kill? How about this, we would only kill infants that were going to die anway from some kind of disease. SInce they would never have a long life, or never achieve adulthood anyway, how many would you have executed so that their organs could be used to make a sustainable cure for all cancers?

If that question is not easy for you to answer with a number greater than zero (and I hope it is not!), then you know why it is hard for many of us to decide how many embryos, which are human beings in our minds, should be destroyed to serve the needs of the rest of us.

Apr. 16, 2007

As the situation with today's two shootings on the campus of Virginia Tech University is being investigated, I have noted the media ignoring explicit warnings from the principles, rushing instead to conclude that there was one shooter in both incidents. I listened carefully to the news conference and read the news report on FoxNews.com, and so far this appears to be an inference, not a fact. But it is being reported widely, both on Fox News and ABC radio news reports. I wish journalists were more careful.

Here are the rumors: an Asian man came to the campus looking for his girlfriend. He killed two people in the dorm and then went on a premeditated killing spree more than two hours later in an academic building on the opposite and of the campus using a completely different modus operandi.

We shall see...

Mar. 14, 2007

Clinton fired 92 U.S. Attorneys at once when he took office in 1993. Bush fires eight and Charles Schumer runs out like Chicken Little clucking that the sky is falling because of an unprecedented political move and abuse of power. Or maybe the better fairy-tale reference is to the boy who cried wolf. If there ever is a real abuse of power, a real dishonest administration, no one will listen to him because of his daily forays into partisan hyperbole.

Jan. 23, 2007

What kind of economy to the Democrats want? They complain bitterly about the fact that corporate bosses make far more than the workers. But in the same period of time they complain the gap has widened immensely between corporate bosses' salaries and the salaries of workers, the salaries of the other filthy rich in our society, entertainers and sports figures, have increased at least as much and probably more. Why do they not mention this fact? Well, it doesn't feather their nest because they won't make people stop wanting to go to movies and watch sports. But if they can impose some kind of salary cap on corporate bigwhigs they seem to think they will increase the wages of workers. Of course, the lesser value of excellence in management cannot have such an effect, but will instead produce less quality management which will lead to lower profits and lower profits lead to workforce cuts, which help no one. Indeed, they don't like economies that have low unemployment, rising incomes, and low inflation. Their policies will take us back to the heydey of liberalism in the 1970's when inflation was rife, unemployment was in double-digits, and hope was at its lowest ebb since the Depression. Couple that with their policy of abandoning our allies in Iraq to allow al Qaeda and Iran to take over the region, and disaster will be inevitable should their policies win out. Hopefully there won't be enough of the fools who helped elect them to help them push us to the brink of disaster.

Nov. 1, 2006

John Kerry lets his guard down from time to time, and when he does, he exposes his real beliefs. Military people are idiots who can't come up with anything better to do with their lives than die in a failed war. That's what he thought after his return from Vietnam, and that's what he thought yesterday. Just when it seemed like the liberal lies of the Pelosi's and the Michael J. Fox's might win the day, the arrogance of Kerry may give the Republicans an opening to prevent the disastrous advancement of the irresponsible and fraudulent platform of Nancy Pelosi from corrupting the House of Representatives. There is room for hope. Vote Republican.

Sept. 8, 2006

The Democrats are outraged that ABC might portray Democrats in a less-than-heroic light. They've never complained that NBC's West Wing routinely caricatured and misrepresented the policies and beliefs (to say nothing of the methods and actions) of Republicans. They haven't stood up and decried the media lynching of the Bush Administration as conspirators in the outing of Valerie Plame, even though it is clear that there was never any such conspiracy (they haven't even apologized for their own false claims about that subject repeated endlessly on the evening newscasts). Every speech any of them gives is a litany of false accusations and empty claims (new "plans" that have no substantive beyond existing plans for Iraq, alleged lies that everyone with a brain knows were not lies, etc., etc.). They attack every program necessary for our national security on the assumption (nowhere justified by facts) that these programs are being abused or stretched beyond the Constitution and the laws. They attack our military conduct in every arena. The difference? Well, Republicans were very generous in not pointing out when the Clinton administration was bombing Serbia in 1999 that Serbia was no threat to its neighbors, was not harboring and had not used weapons of mass destruction, and was demonstrably guilty of nothing but attacking terrorists even though they were hiding among human shields. No, the Republicans supported that action because they were inclined to trust even an administration that was actually corrupt (as opposed to one that is constantly accused of corruption without evidence). And because the Republicans believed that partisanship ends at the water's edge. Unfortunately that stream does not flow in both directions. Democratic hypocrisy stinks and their disloyalty and anti-Americanism stinks even more. It's a shame the media manages to portray them as reasonable people when all they are is political hacks without an ounce of integrity or patriotism. And I'm not talking about Sam Nunn or (on his good days) Joe Lieberman. I just can't think of any other exceptions.

Apr. 28, 2006

I saw a clip yesterday of Sen. Mary Landrieu (D - LA) saying that we need to "abolish and reinvent" FEMA because (according to her and the rest of the rats fleeing the sinking bureacratic ship THEY INVENTED) it was so ineffectual in the response to Hurricane Katrina last September. Well, if that's the standard, we ought to abolish and reinvent Louisiana and New Orleans. That would solve a lot more fundamental problems. Creating a new bureaucracy charged to do what no bureaucracy can do without the help of local and state officials is nothing more than putting a dress on a pig.

Apr. 17, 2006

CNN Report April 2005
How about that Shinseki myth? Did Gen. Shinseki say we needed hundreds of thousands of troops after the invasion of Iraq to secure the peace? According to other generals who were in meetings he attended, he did not object to Gen. Tommy Franks' plan for the invasion and aftermath. The chorus of generals who've claimed to have been of a different opinion and not to have been heard might well have been a bit quieter than they want us to believe.

Apr. 6, 2006

What is 'amnesty'? The Greek root means "lack of remembrance" and legally that means immunity from prosecution for previous offenses. If there is an arrangement in the law that allows illegal immigrants to remain in this country and not worry that they might be prosecuted or deported for their previous illegal acts, then they will effectively have amnesty even if some want to deny that the word applies.

Mar. 15, 2006

Well, it's finally happened. A law suit has been filed on the theory that, in order to afford them equal protection under the law, men must have the same right granted women by the Roe v. Wade decision to opt out of parenthood and thus not be liable for physical or financial support of a child the woman chooses to keep. I have expected for years that this was inevitably going to happen. The reaction of some conservatives is very cold, since they don't think the woman should have the right to abort (a position I share with them). But they don't see as I do (I suppose) that it will weaken whatever hold feminists have on public opinion when they have to abandon their rhetoric of "reproductive choice" since this case will force them to argue against "reproductive choice" when it comes to men. Their arguments will unravel thread by thread until all that will be left is the basis for their opinion: it's "good" for women to be able to evade their responsibilities when they so desire, but what's good for the goose is not good for the gander...

Mar. 8, 2006

If I had time and energy I would write three columns today. First, I would point out that it is a sad day for our collective discourse when even the Republicans don't care about the truth. They don't have a single factual reason (at least that they've demonstrated so far) to think the Dubai Ports World deal would be dangerous, and thus there's no reason other than bigotry to conclude that our staunchest ally in the Middle East is not worthy of trust because they're Arabs. That coupled with the intolerable meddling in Executive action makes this whole situation distasteful to the point of disgust. I am ashamed of the House Republicans who today took the cowardly step of amending a critical spending bill with a poison pill designed to trap their own President. I would write about the hot issue of abortion and go through again the arguments that abortion and embryonic stem cell research are contrary to any objective standard of human rights. I would also develop an argument about the situation with Iran and the wishy-washy Russians who seem unwilling to work with us to keep us from having to act unilaterally against Iran when the Russians prevent the world from taking any meaningful steps to force them back from the brink of nuclear Armageddon. It's all too overwhelming and it's been a long day, so these arguments will have to wait at least another day.

Mar. 6, 2006

When will I have time to deal in detail with all the outrageous lies and distortions foisted on us daily by the liberal media and liberal teachers. Jay Bennish's now-infamous rant is not simply a liberal opinion offered without a balancing conservative opinion. It is a rant based on a complete and utter lack of perspective and would dissolve upon factual examination. It is not irresponsible primarily because it was offered without balance, but because it has no basis in reality. Then there is the continued misrepresentation of facts regarding the Dubai Ports World deal, the bizarre media flip-flop on Michael Brown which is really just an attempt to lionize him so as to demonize George W. Bush just as unfairly as Brown was demonized in the first place. Will they ever recognize how transparent they are?

Mar. 2, 2006

More media lies. They're so quick to try to make mincemeat out of George W. Bush that they don't even bother to study the evidence they're putting up on broadcast, newspaper, and internet media. Just as an example, CNN.com reports on tapes and transcripts of briefings of the President prior to Katrina's landfall, and declares in the subhead that "federal disaster officials warned President George W. Bush and his homeland security chief before Hurricane Katrina struck that the storm could breach levees". No such words were ever spoken. One official said it wasn't certain whether or not the water would "top" the levees. "Top" is not a synonym for "breach" unless you're ignorant or too eager to trash the President to bother using a dictionary. The disastrous floods that eventuated after the "breach" of levees would not have occurred had they only been "topped." What can I say? If the measure of journalism is accuracy and objectivity, everyone who printed this misconception has revealed themselves to be foreigners in that realm. They're pure propagandists trying to sway public opinion with lies and misrepresentations of the truth. It is truly disgusting.

Feb. 28, 2006

On Laura Ingraham's radio show this morning she's touting the Coast Guard memo (from early in the investigation of the Dubai Ports World deal) and scoffing at people who say it's been taken out of context. It has been, as is clear from the testimony of the leadership of the U.S. Coast Guard, who have told a Senate committee that the concerns expressed in the memo were addressed in subsequent reports. A little context would make this whole flap evaporate, but no one seems interested in investigating the context because that would take the wind out of their rhetorical sails.

Feb. 27, 2006

Sen. Susan Collins (R - Maine) is emblematic of the Republicans' inability to refrain from cannibalism. Why they would want to jump to the conclusion, without reason, that the Dubai Ports World deal is bad for security and foreign policy is beyond me, unless it is simply congressional politics. I need to write up a fuller discussion of this issue (if I have time before it's old news!!!).

Feb. 21, 2006

I am putting final touches on the new site. It will be nice to be able to wade back into the fray with a more streamlined interface. I hope users will find it more helpful and useful. It will be much easier for me to keep it up to date.

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