Secretary

Tim Bishop Attacks Tea Party for Not Spending Enough

by Bill O'Connell on September 23, 2011

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President Obama Speaking at Solyndra

Congressman Tim Bishop has not been able to keep from spending, no matter what. The Postal Service has an $8.5 billion deficit, and Tim Bishop is out there fighting to keep an unneeded post office open. We are trillions of dollars in debt and he comes out blasting the Tea Party, because they want Congress to not waste anymore money on green boondoggles like Solyndra.

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The Buffett Rule Lie

by Bill O'Connell on September 20, 2011

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When  does the decent interval end? When does the clock run out on giving the president the benefit of the doubt and when is it time to call it as you see it, no holds barred?

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Tim Bishop Outsources Jobs with Your Tax Dollars

by Bill O'Connell on October 28, 2010

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There’s good news and bad news coming out of the Tim Bishop campaign.  The good news is that he has a new ad out so we don’t have to keep watching the same ad he has been running incessantly for the past five weeks.  The bad news it’s about the one subject that Tim Bishop wants to talk about, outsourcing.  It’s the same old stuff, wrapped in a new package.  Why can’t Tim Bishop talk about his record?  Is he embarrassed by it or afraid of it.

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An Apology Too Far

by Bill O'Connell on May 18, 2010

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If you have been following the Obama administration closely it’s hard to be surprised by some of the things that they do but… never say never.  Yesterday, Michael Posner whose title is, are you ready for this, Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor brought up in discussions with China, the recent law passed in Arizona to control the number of illegals flooding into that state. This is a law that was passed to address this and the previous administration’s miserable failure to control the border.

The Chinese had counterpunched in response to a report on Human Rights issued by the State Department, as required by U.S. law, that was particularly critical of China, North Korea, and Iran and their restrictions on the Internet, other communications means and their treatment of minorities in their respective countries.  This is what the Chinese said:

“The United States not only has a terrible domestic human rights record, it is also the main source of many human rights disasters worldwide,” the Chinese report said, according to the official Xinhua news agency.

“Especially a time when the world is suffering serious human rights disasters caused by the global financial crisis sparked by the U.S. sub-prime crisis, the U.S. government has ignored its own grave human rights problems and reveled in accusing other countries.”

So, after being required by law since 1976 to issue an annual report on Human Rights and not wanting to be excoriated by Congress if they made it a puff piece, our socialist leaning administration felt it necessary to walk it back in meetings with the Chinese by bringing up the new law in Arizona, “early and often”.

The Chinese must have been stunned with their good fortune.  Here was the Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, going out of his way to point to a new immigration law passed in Arizona to say America might be encouraging discrimination.  Here is the question from a reporter and Secretary Posner’s response:

QUESTION:  Did the recently passed Arizona immigration law come up?  And, if so, did they bring it up or did you bring it up?

ASSISTANT SECRETARY POSNER:  We brought it up early and often. It was mentioned in the first session, and as a troubling trend in our society and an indication that we have to deal with issues of discrimination or potential discrimination, and that these are issues very much being debated in our own society.

The Chinese, who under Mao killed millions of their own citizens, force families to have abortions after their first and only child is born, forcefully relocated peasants to Beijing to build the Olympic facilities and them sent them back to their farms, refuse to let information flow to their citizens over the Internet, completely dominate and subjugate Tibet, and we are criticizing our own behavior to them for passing a law in Arizona?

In testimony before Congress after publicly making remarks that the new Arizona law is discriminatory and may trigger a lawsuit from the federal government Attorney General Eric Holder admitted that he had not read the Arizona law.  The Arizona law takes up all of ten pages and the Attorney General has not found the time to read it, but somehow knows the law is discriminatory.

In testimony before Congress Secretary of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano also admitted that she had not read the bill.  The speedy Secretary, who was quick to point out that things were running swell at the Department of Homeland Security after a Muslim extremist in an Army uniform killed thirteen at Fort Hood and that the Times Square bomber was a “lone wolf” before investigators found numerous international ties, wasn’t quick enough to read the ten page law before testifying to Congress.

This is an administration and Congress that can crank out thousands of pages of laws that will change the landscape of liberty in America and then rams them through without reading them and cannot read a ten page law before declaring it discriminatory.  It makes you wonder if anyone in this administration knows how to read, which would explain a lot about their ignorance of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.

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Say Goodbye, Janet

by Bill O'Connell on May 3, 2010

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There comes a time when you have to realize saving face is not worth putting your countrymen at risk.  After the terror attack on Foot Hood, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said:

“The system has worked really very, very smoothly over the course of the past several days,” Janet Napolitano, the Homeland Security secretary said, in an interview on “This Week” on ABC. Robert Gibbs, the White House spokesman, used nearly the same language on “Face the Nation” on CBS, saying that “in many ways, this system has worked.”

Later, both Napolitano and Gibbs had to “amend” those statements.  After a botched terror attack in New York City, Secretary Napolitano was quick to conclude it was a “one-off”.  No problem folks, it’s all clear.  Later in the day reports were that officials were increasingly seeing international links to the bombing.

What is it with Napolitano and her rush to sound the “all clear”?  Wouldn’t it be prudent to let the investigation lead where it is going to lead?  The last place we need such superficiality is at the Department of Homeland Security.  President Obama should replace her before her next goof leads to serious damage to the country.

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Financial Reform — NOT

by Bill O'Connell on April 24, 2010

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It was like the movie Rocky the Democrats (Rocky) were getting pounded left and right over their heavy handed tactics.  They crammed through a health care bill that an overwhelming majority of the country opposed.  They moved on to financial reform and they still couldn’t get any traction.  Their poll numbers continued to drop and it was looking like a dismal election coming up in the fall. 

 And then, just like in the movie Rocky swings from his heels and connects knocking the champ to the canvas.  In this case it was the SEC charging Goldman Sachs with fraud.  Now they could fire a full fusillade of class warfare at the Republicans and either get Republicans to help pass the financial reform bill or be tarred as the party of the evil bankers and greedy Wall Street robber barons.  But unlike the movie, right after knocking the opponent down, when the referee sends Rocky back to a neutral corner he slips in his own sweat, flips on his back and knocks himself out.  By that I mean the news came out that employees of the SEC spent an inordinate amount of their time watching porn instead of the financial markets.  How do you expand the role of government on the heels of that disclosure?

 Trying to Make Up for Bernie Madoff?

When Bernie Madoff’s ponzi scheme was in full swing, Harry Markopolos brought the scam to the SEC practically tied in a bow.  The SEC did not respond.  Perhaps they were too busy…, well never mind.

With the Democrats trusty weapon, class warfare, holstered it’s time to delve more deeply into this financial reform legislation.

In a letter to Senate majority leader Harry Reid and minority leader Mitch McConnell, luminaries including former SEC Chief Accountant Lynn Turner, former Labor Secretary Robert Reich, hedge fund owner Jim Chanos, former Lehman Brothers Vice Chair Peter Solomon, former S&L investigator Bill Black, former Senate Banking Committee Chief Economist Rob Johnson, economists Dean Baker, Barry Eichengreen and others pointed out that Dodd’s proposed financial reform legislation wouldn’t have prevented the current crisis … and won’t prevent the next crisis.

So tell me again why we are doing this?  It’s all about more government control and more power in Washington, not about fixing any real problem.  Where are Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in this bill?  They were at the very core of the financial meltdown.  In other words it’s all politics and it’s all straight out of the Saul Alinsky tome Rules for Radicals:

 Rule No. 13. Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.  In conflict tactics there are certain rules that [should be regarded] as universalities. One is that the opposition must be singled out as the target and ‘frozen.’…

     “…any target can always say, ‘Why do you center on me when there are others to blame as well?’ When your ‘freeze the target,’ you disregard these [rational but distracting] arguments…. Then, as you zero in and freeze your target and carry out your attack, all the ‘others’ come out of the woodwork very soon. They become visible by their support of the target…’

     “One acts decisively only in the conviction that all the angels are on one side and all the devils on the other.” (pps.127-134)

The target in this case, is Wall Street and the Banks.  Demonize them.  When the “others”, meaning the Republicans, come out to challenge the ineffectiveness of the bill, then they can be attacked as being for the fat cats and against the little guys; class warfare at its ugliest.

 Follow the Money

But who is really in bed with the fat cats?  The Political Action Committees (PACs), employees, families of employees and other associates of Goldman Sachs gave almost $1 million in campaign contributions to Obama.  In this legislation, the concept of too big to fail remains untouched.  There will be a $50 billion fund created with money from the top banks to standby if needed for a bailout, but this also gives the impression that the largest banks are now safer because of this fund and therefore can get a lower interest rate on their borrowings compared to smaller banks.

 Democratic Congressman Brad Sherman said:

 “The Dodd bill has unlimited executive bailout authority. That’s something Wall Street desperately wants but doesn’t dare ask for. The bill contains permanent, unlimited bailout authority.”

 Why ask for it when the Obama administration will give it to you.  All you have to do is let them smack you around a bit to prime the class warfare pump, and you’re all set.

If you are backstopped by unlimited executive bailout, go ahead, take bigger and bigger risks.  The government will step in if you fail.  So here we have yet another fat cat (Wall Street/Big Banks) wolf dressed in sheep’s clothing (the little guy; Main Street). 

 If you want real financial reform, then in the name of capitalism, the big banks and Wall Street have to learn to play with their own money. If they hit a home run, good for them.  If they strikeout, they should lose their own money and if they don’t have enough to cover their losses, goodbye.   They should not be allowed to take huge risks and if they pay off, everybody there gets a new mansion in the Hamptons, but if they go bust, hand the bill to us.  Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, we were told were private entities, not part of the government, but wink, wink, nudge, nudge, everyone knew the federal government was standing behind them and would not let them go bust.  So they too, got the kind of interest rates, half a point lower than their competitors, based on this implied backing not based on the strength of their balance sheet.

We have to fight this one too.  This is just more smoke and mirrors from the Obama administration.  Another power grab without any substantive benefit to the American people.

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Unmasking Obama

by Bill O'Connell on April 12, 2010

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I was watching Mike Huckabee’s show this weekend when a curious exchange took place.  Governor Huckabee tried to be fair to President Obama by saying “I believe in his heart that President Obama believes he is doing what is best for the country.”  The governor is not alone among those who oppose President Obama who graciously say this.  Perhaps it is a preemptive strike to avoid being tarred as a racist.  At the same time, however, they will say they think President Obama is a smart man.  How do you reconcile those two positions?

 Either the man is an idiot and he is stumbling toward socialism without realizing it, or he is an intelligent man who is taking the country to socialism by design.  I don’t see a middle ground.  The only possibility is that he is a man with an arrogance so breathtaking in scope, that he ignores the will of the people and is implementing programs and policies that he believes is better for the unintelligent masses, and mistakenly thinks it is still capitalism.  I can’t square the man’s intelligence, which I believe he has, with him not knowing the difference between capitalism and socialism/Marxism.

 Okay, so what prompted this train of thought?  It was prompted by some little know activity south of the border and I don’t mean Mexico.  Earlier in his term, President Obama, Secretary Clinton and others tried to help return a Hugo Chavez puppet to the presidency in Honduras.  Manuel Zalaya was following tactics of Chavez and Castro, to remain in office beyond his term which is limited.  By doing so, he was immediately in violation of Honduran law and their constitution.  He was removed by order of the Honduran Supreme Court with the backing of the Honduran legislature.  The only step they might have taken which was too far was they put him on a plane out of the country.

 Chavez, Castro, et al, were outraged.  Did the Obama administration come down on the side of democracy and democratic institutions? No, they tried to strong arm Honduras to put Zalaya back in office, by cancelling visas, affecting trade and other measures.  Honduras proceeded, ignoring these threats, to hold a general election to peacefully choose a new president which they did.  The United States has reluctantly agreed to recognize the new president, but it was not easy for small Honduras to stand up to the United States and based on what they were fighting for and they shouldn’t have had to.

 What other signs do I find troubling?  After going against the will of the American people in forcing through ObamaCare, Fidel Castro heaped praise upon Obama for the law’s passage only criticizing him for taking so long.  In April of 2009, President Obama embraced Hugh Chavez.  Today Hugo Chavez is in the process of shutting down the last television outlet that is critical of him while forming closer ties to Ahmadinejad of Iran.

 In Ecuador, President Rafael Correa is following the Chavez model.  He is also chummy with Iran, is constantly threatening the free press, and the economy is in shambles.  He fired congressmen who disagreed with him and replaced them with others who saw things his way.  When the constitutional court said the fired congressmen had to be reinstated, Correa took to the airwaves to declare he was ignoring the court’s decision.  Shortly thereafter an angry mob marched on the court, the police who are supposed to protect them stood aside.  Do we have a statement of concern from the White House regarding this trampling of democracy?  No, we have the State Department’s Assistant Secretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs, Arturo Valenzuela, calling on President Correa.  According to the Wall Street Journal’s Mary Anastasia O’Grady:

 During Tuesday’s meeting before television cameras, Mr. Valenzuela expressed concern about Iran’s nuclear ambitions and its budding relationship with Ecuador. According to Reuters, Mr. Correa told him: “We don’t want to get involved in that discussion. But what does it have to do with selling bananas to Iran or with Iran financing our hydroelectric plants?” Translation: Ahmadinejad is my friend. You butt out.

 The U.S. response? Mr. Valenzuela would not rule out a meeting between Mr. Correa and Barack Obama. If that happens, prepare for a redux of the Obama embrace of Hugo Chávez in Port of Spain, Trinidad, in April 2009—more humiliation for Americans who used to think of their government as a noble defender of liberty against despots.

 Creeping Socialism

Obama has given government control over one-sixth of the U.S. economy with the implementation of ObamaCare.  He has nationalized two automobile companies.  He has nationalized the student loan program.  Unions, for the first time, have more members in the government than the private sector, but President Obama wants to increase their numbers in the private sector as well with Card Check.  Who are the unions beholding to and vice versa?  The Democratic Party.  With more union members to do his bidding where does the average citizen stand?  In a July speech President Obama said the following:

 ”We cannot continue to rely on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we’ve set. We’ve got to have a civilian national security force that’s just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded.” (emphasis added)

 If this doesn’t send chills up your spine conjuring up dark images from the 1930s, you need to put down the Playstation and pick up a newspaper or a book.  Consider that when he graduated from Columbia he became a follower of Saul Alinsky, a Marxist community organizer.  Barack Obama did not cut his teeth by starting a small business.  He cut his teeth learning how to take down capitalism using Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals.  As he gets chummy with America’s enemies, he gives the back of his hand to our allies: Israel, Great Britain, Poland,and the Czech Republic.  Do you still believe this is a coincidence Governor Huckabee?

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Can We Recover Our Money?

by Bill O'Connell on July 9, 2009

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$18 Million for This?

$18 million folks, that’s how much the federal government is going to spend to improve the web site that tells us how they are spending the stimulus money. $18 million. They will be spending $9.5 through January, and another $8.5 million through 2014.  I don’t need a calendar nor a calculator to figure out that’s five years from now.  Are they trying to tell us now that this recession is going to last five years?

Stagnant Stimulus

If we remember President Obama and Vice President Biden telling us how urgently we needed the stimulus package and that there was no time to waste to avert a catastrophe.  Right now the unemployment rate with the stimulus is higher than they told us it would be if they did NOTHING.

Less than 10% of the stimulus money has been spent with most of it being transfers to state and local government.  The economy is showing signs of turning around on its own, and I say that because with such a small percentage of the stimulus having been spent it contributed little to the improving conditions.  So naturally, the political class is starting to talk about another stimulus package.  You would almost think that they wanted to drag this out.

Reminiscent of Roosevelt

Through the Great Depression, the steps that Roosevelt took didn’t turn the economy around.  Unemployment remained high until World War II absorbed every able bodied man into the armed forces.  Yet Roosevelt was elected to four terms in office.  Why?  The first three terms were through the Depression.  Although Roosevelt’s policies didn’t work, he knew how to communicate on a personal level.  He held “fireside chats.”  He, through the radio, came into people’s living rooms and soothingly assured them that we have nothing to fear but fear itself.  Trust Roosevelt, he will take care of us, he will see us through.

President Obama’s personal approval ratings continue to fly high, even as the wreckage of almost every campaign promise is strewn around the countryside.  He is certainly likable and his election is historic, but will that be enough to carry him as his inexperience is laid bare at every turn.  But, as the former governor of New York and Secretary of the Navy, Roosevelt had executive experience.  Obama brought no executive experience with him.

Czars Aplenty

So who is running the government?  Obama had 16-18 Czars, depending on who is counting, who are not vetted by the Senate like Cabinet Secretaries and a host of other appointees are.  So where are the checks and balances?  Even Robert Byrd is concerned that the may be violating the Constitution.  If this weren’t so serious, you would think it was a pilot for a sitcom.  What aspect of this administration is not out of control?  Let’s hope we can all survive long enough to make it back to the voting booth.

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