John McCain

Who Would Obama Rather Run Against?

by Bill O'Connell on October 24, 2011

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Don’t pay attention to what you are hearing from Obama’s supporters. What they really want may be the opposite of what they are saying.

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The Unusual Calculus of Herman Cain’s Chances

by Bill O'Connell on October 15, 2011

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Throughout out the Republican campaign process, Herman Cain has been portrayed as an interesting candidate, but with no serious chance of winning the Republican nomination. What I found was the most curious logic was on the O’Reilly Factor the other night. Bill’s reasoning that Herman Cain won’t win the nomination was because the most important thing to Republicans was to unseat Obama and that independents won’t vote for Cain because he is too conservative.

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Starbucks CEO Schultz Has a Jobs Recovery Plan

by Bill O'Connell on August 18, 2011

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Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz wrote an open letter to his fellows CEOs about the current economic situation. (Howard Schultz CEO Letter) In it he calls for action. The letter and Mr. Schultz are interesting both for what they say and what they don’t.

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Tim Bishop Compares Republicans to Riverboat Gamblers

by Bill O'Connell on May 31, 2011

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Martin Luther King, Jr. gave a great oration with his “I Have a Dream” speech that moved millions of Americans to action. Howard Dean gave a puzzling oration with his “I Have a Scream” speech that moved millions of Americans to laughter and derision. Tim Bishop flops at oration with an “I Have a Scheme” remarks that will leave hundreds (he’d be hard pressed to reach millions), scratching their heads.

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Steve Israel Attacks Redistribution of Wealth, or Does He?

by Bill O'Connell on December 7, 2010

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For years Daniel Patrick Moynihan, one of the most thoughtful and erudite public servants we have had, published a document New York and the Federal Fisc that described the flow of dollars from New York and the great imbalance on the return trip.  Steve Israel seems to have taken up that mantle but his votes in the House are baffling.

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A Question for Chuck Schumer: When Are We All Americans?

by Bill O'Connell on December 1, 2010

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The Democrats were routed at the polls.  They lost the House of Representatives; they converted a near supermajority in the Senate to a mere majority and they lost enough state level races to give Republicans the kind of control they haven’t enjoyed since 1928.  But the message fell on deaf Democrat ears.

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Krugman Looniness Doesn’t Let Up

by Bill O'Connell on September 20, 2010

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In today’s rant titled, “The Angry Rich and Taxes,” Paul Krugman continues to amaze how the man won a Nobel Prize for economics.  I know, I know, it was for his work on international trade.  I keep telling myself, but it just seems so strange that when he wanders into other areas he seems so lost.  But then again, he was a paid advisor to Enron.

After his introductory riff he gets down to business, “The rage of the rich has been building ever since Mr. Obama took office. At first, however, it was largely confined to Wall Street.”  Ever since Mr. Obama took office and primarily from Wall Street?  Wall Street spent tremendous amounts of money to get Obama elected over John McCain and Krugman is trying to tell us that they were upset with him from the day he took office?  Here are the numbers:

  1. Goldman Sachs associates gave $764,700 more to Obama than McCain
  2. Citigroup associates gave $379,239 more to Obama than McCain
  3. JP Morgan associates gave $467,025 more to Obama than McCain
  4. UBS associates gave $350,726 more to Obama than McCain
  5. Morgan Stanley gave $241,429 more to Obama than McCain

Who is crazier, Krugman or all those folks on Wall Street, who we are told are devilishly clever, who spent a fortune to elect a man they hated the day he won?

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Putting the Champion of the Little Guys Myth to Rest

by Bill O'Connell on April 20, 2010

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The Democrats are currently trying to roll out that old war horse, “class warfare” in a desperate attempt to arrest their freefall in the polls.  The myth is that they are for the little guy when they are the party of big government.  Businesses, once they get big, are hardly fans of the free market as they would much prefer to settle into a profitable market niche and not have to keep battling against upstarts.

Show Me the Money

An organization known as OpenSecrets.org, has a website that has information on contributions to the 2008 presidential campaign.  The list of top contributors is not a list of contributions by corporations but by contributions from those company’s Political Action Committees, its individual members or employees or owners, and those individuals’ immediate families, but it does give you a sense of where the people who make up these companies see their bread buttered.

If you look at the top 20 donors to Obama compared to the top 20 donors to McCain, the 20th donor on Obama’s list gave 32% more to Obama than the top donor to McCain.  As with any large organization there will be individuals who support Republicans and individuals who support Democrats, as well as their PACs wanting hedge bets by giving to both.  But the amounts are telling.

What is particularly illuminating is with regard to Wall Street and the Banks.  The Democrats are latching onto the sound bite that they want more regulation to protect the little guy, while the Republicans want less regulation so that Wall Street and the banks can get rich at the expense of the little guy.

Who’s Dumber Wall Street or the Democrats?

Does anyone believe that the leaders of Wall Street would give money to a candidate or party without expecting their point of view to be heard?  Does anyone believe that the Democrats would take contributions and then turn around and burn those who contributed so generously, particularly before a very tough election?  Okay, now that we have that settled let’s look at the numbers.

The top Wall Street and Bank Contributors to Obama’s election were as follows:

  1. Goldman Sachs — $994,795
  2. Citigroup — $701,290
  3. JP Morgan Chase — $695,132
  4. UBS AG — $543,219
  5. Morgan Stanley — $514,881

The top Wall Street and Bank Contributors to McCain’s election were as follows:

  1. Merrill Lynch — $373, 595 (subsequently sold to Bank of America)
  2. Citigroup — $322,051
  3. Morgan Stanley — $273,452
  4. Goldman Sachs — $230,095
  5. JP Morgan Chase — $228,107
  6. Wachovia — $195,063 (acquired by Wells Fargo)
  7. UBS AG — $192,493
  8. Credit Suisse — $183,353
  9. Bank of America — $166,026
  10. Bear Stearns — $117,498 (subsequently sold to JP Morgan Chase in a fire sale)
  11. Lehman Brothers — $114,357 (Bankrupt)

It looks like four of the companies with people who gave to McCain didn’t survive the meltdown and either disappeared or were swallowed up by the winners.  If you look as people from companies that gave to both candidates, the amounts are significantly different:

  1. Goldman Sachs associates gave $764,700 more to Obama than McCain
  2. Citigroup associates gave $379,239 more to Obama than McCain
  3. JP Morgan associates gave $467,025 more to Obama than McCain
  4. UBS associates gave $350,726 more to Obama than McCain
  5. Morgan Stanley gave $241,429 more to Obama than McCain

I am not suggesting any quid pro quo for the contributions, but people do things for a reason.  Who do you think will be more sensitive to the needs of Wall Street, Obama or the Republicans? 

So look for a Financial Reform package that is a lot of smoke and mirrors that actually does nothing constructive.  Republicans will oppose it, and Democrats will try to flog them as being for Wall Street and the Banks and against the little guy, but facts are facts.  Remember, after passing ObamaCare Democrats tried to paint the picture that they stood up to the insurance companies, when they passed a law that will compel millions of Americans to become customers of those same insurance companies.  Do you think that is why the opposition from the insurance companies was muted?

It’s time to drive home the point that this Administration is allied with Wall Street, GE, health insurance companies against us.  It should not be hard to do.  People are listening closely like never before.

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Thank you, Mr. President?

by Bill O'Connell on April 16, 2010

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President Obama went about doing what he does best, giving another speech, and in doing so demonstrated his true colors.  He also demonstrated how far he has come from his empty promises to be a uniter and not a divider.  As millions across the country gathered to make their voices heard that we are over taxed and over governed, he smugly wondered to a crowd of supporters why the Tea Party members weren’t thanking him for lowering our taxes.

That claim holds about as much water as his continually proclaimed “jobs saved”, a statistic that he and Joe Biden frequently parrot but no one knows how to measure.  The Bush tax cuts are about to expire and Obama has no intention of extending them.  Thank you, Mr. President.  He took $787 billion of our hard earned tax dollars and squandered them on a stimulus program that actually made things worse.  How can I make such an outrageous statement?  I am relying on the words of the smartest man ever elected to the presidency of the United States.  He told us that if we did not implement his stimulus package, the unemployment rate would rise to 9%.  Well, it’s at 9.7% so it is not unreasonable to conclude the package that he passed actually made the situation worse.  Thank you, Mr. President

He has rammed through his health care program that will add taxes to drugs and medical devices, will tax citizens if they do not buy the insurance he wants us to have.  It will cost $1-2 trillion and where does he think that money is going to come from?  The Federal government only has one source of revenues, taxes and fees.  So how does he suppose he is going to pay for all of this?  Why, thank you, Mr. President

Keep mugging it up, Mr. President, keep sneering at the majority of Americans, and soon you can join Jimmy Carter’s elite club of bitter hope and change one term presidents.

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Obama’s Truth Deficit

by Bill O'Connell on February 1, 2010

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For nearly eight years we heard the left scream, “Bush Lied!” over the decision to invade Iraq.  One decision and the same refrain repeated over and over again.  Where is the scrutiny of the truth police where President Obama is concerned?

In his State of the Union address he took the unprecedented step of calling out the Supreme Court and encouraging his minions to give that rebuke a standing ovation.  Shameful.  This is not to say that Obama cannot criticize other branches of government, but there is a time and a place.  When Joe Wilson called out “LIAR!” during a previous speech by President Obama he was roundly criticized and rightly so.  Not for the criticism, but for the time and the place.  Joe Wilson called the president to apologize.  Did Obama do the same?

The timing of the act was bad enough, but the accusation he made was not true, as Samuel Alito could be seen saying, if you can read lips.  In the midst of his constitutional duty to report to Congress on the State of the Union, he uses a blatant lie to attack his guests. But that wasn’t all.  His speech was sprinkled throughout with falsehoods, not least of which was his statement on jobs.

Counting the Uncountable

To try to put a positive spin on his porkulus bill, he had to make up a statistic that no reputable economist can endorse, “jobs saved”.  In his State of the Union speech and on the Sunday morning talk show circuit, Obama and his team talked about 2 million jobs created or saved. But they weren’t all on the same page, some said 1.8 million, but regardless it is blatant dishonesty.

Jobs created is a real statistic.  As a small business owner I can tell you that when you hire someone there are a number of government agencies that you have to report it to and you have a deadline in which to do so.  There is also some paperwork involved when you eliminate a job.  But I have never, never had to report to any agency when I thought about eliminating a job and then changed my mind.  After all wouldn’t that be the definition of a job saved?

If I never thought about eliminating the position, then the job is not “saved” it just continues to exist.  If I thought about eliminating the position and did so, it would not be a job “saved” it would be a job eliminated, no?  So it is this two step process of thinking about the action and then not following through that could reasonably be thought of as a “job saved”.  How do you measure that thought process?  Hiring someone is an observable action.  Eliminating a job is an observable action.  Saving a job are two related thought processes not externally observable, they can only be “reported” by the decision maker and it cannot be independently verified.  Is that the kind of statistic upon which you want your government to base billions of dollars in spending decision?   The only added feature of Obamanomics is that some money changes hands.  Money that comes from you, dear taxpayer, and goes to the businessman.  Can you see why such a statistic is ridiculous?

Which One Is It Mr. President?  Mr. Biden? Anyone?

Let’s pretend for a moment that “jobs saved” is a real statistic.  If the president has a figure in his head of 2 million jobs created or saved, and for the aforementioned reasons the number of jobs created is a hard number reported to some agency, then the number of jobs saved should be a matter of simple math.  2 million minus the number of jobs actually created equals the number of jobs saved.  So why not report it as such?  100,000 jobs created and 1.9 million jobs saved, for example.  Why lump them together?  Because when you lump them together its harder to tell how big of a lie the president is telling.

Stimulus recipients previously reported that they had directly “created or saved” 640,329 jobs by Sept. 30, but their filings were criticized after it emerged that some people had reported saving jobs when they had actually spent the money on pay raises or paying employees who were not in danger of being laid off.

In December, the White House Office of Management and Budget changed its guidance, telling recipients they should start counting every worker whose salary was funded with stimulus money, rather than guessing whether the jobs would have existed in the absence of the federal plan. Opponents of the program accused the administration of “moving the goal posts” to make the plan appear more successful. — Wall Street Journal, Latest Stimulus Report Fuels Jobs Pressure, Feb. 1 2010

So companies using stimulus money to give people raises was counted as jobs saved!  We have 10%-17% of our workforce idled and taxpayers are being fleeced to give people raises and this administration is calling that successful policy.  When do we start firing people in this administration?  How about Janet Napolitano?  How about Eric Holder?  or are we saving their jobs too so that the numbers look good?  The other reports are just as galling: $1000 purchase of a lawn mower is credited with saving jobs;  using stimulus money to purchase boots with each boot (left and right) being counted as a job saved because someone had to make the boots; stimulus money going to create jobs in Congressional districts that do not exist.  Does anyone have any confidence that this administration has a clue about how to run a government?  This is beyond embarrassing.

The Next Stimulus

But fear not, since the first stimulus was so successful, President Obama is teeing up the next one, but don’t worry this one is only $100 billion.  Doesn’t that just make you feel warm all over?

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