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Last update: 2012-08-10

A Message from OutloudOpinion 8.10.12

2012-08-10 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

A Message from OutloudOpinion 8.10.12 …

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Economy: Obama Brags About Treading Water 6:14.12

2012-06-14 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

After President Barack Obama said, "The private sector is doing fine," he later quickly regrouped. "The economy is not doing fine (emphasis added). That's the reason I had the press conference." But Obama said he was particularly concerned about losses in the public sector. The cluelessness is absolutely stunning. Obama is wrong about both the private and public sector. Obama's assessment of the economy reminds many of 2008 Republican presidential candidate John McCain's characterization of the economy. In September 2008, the investment firm Lehman Brothers was collapsing. Wall Street was shaking as the yet-to-be-declared recession deepened, but McCain said: "I think, still, the fundamentals of our economy are strong. But these are very, very difficult times." The reaction to McCain was harsh. His opponent, then-Sen. Obama, pounced: "We just woke up to news of financial disaster, and this morning he said that the fundamentals of the economy are still strong? Sen. McCain, what economy are you talking about?" The Washington Post said: "Sen. Barack Obama seized on McCain's assessment of the health of the economy, blasting the Republican for being 'disturbingly out of touch' with the reality that everyday Americans face. 'I just think he doesn't know,' Obama said in Grand Junction, Colo. 'He doesn't get what's happening between the mountain in Sedona where he lives and the corridors of Washington where he works.'"…

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Obama Listens to Rich Liberals, at His Own Peril 6:14.12

2012-06-14 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

Who does Barack Obama listen to? Not Republican politicians. Evidently weeks go by between his conversations with Speaker John Boehner, who determines what legislation comes to the House floor. Not Democratic politicians. We have it on good authority that he seldom talks to Democratic members of Congress. Lyndon Johnson used to be on the phone constantly, cajoling and inveigling but also on the alert for shifts in opinion. Speaker Tip O'Neill walked around the Capitol, asking member after member, "What do you hear?" In contrast, Obama, a former adviser told Vanity Fair's Todd Purdum, "is a total introvert. He doesn't need people." But there is one group of people Obama has to listen to: the people who give him large sums of money. He recently attended his 150th fundraiser. That's more than the number attended by the last four presidents put together. Obama has seen enough Architectural Digest-type interiors in Park Avenue triplexes and Beverly Hills mansions, and on the block in San Francisco's Pacific Heights, where every house is owned by a billionaire, to develop an expertise in Louis XV walnut commodes and Brunschwig & Fils fabrics. He's also had plenty of chances to absorb the advice of the kind of rich liberals who like to give money to Democratic presidents. And the evidence that he has taken some of that advice is his initiatives on three controversial issues, each of which involves serious political risk. The first and least risky of these stands is his endorsement of same-sex marriage. Many Democratic money-givers, straight as well as gay, have strong convictions on this issue and were probably not appeased by his assurance that he was "evolving" from his opposition to it.…

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Create Wealth, Not Jobs 6:14.12

2012-06-14 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

Soon after the president dropped his ill-advised "the private sector is doing fine" gaffe, White House press secretary Jay Carney scolded the media for failing to frame the comment in the proper "context." Which is weird, because the context is the worst part. Yes, government "creates" jobs, often out of thin air. The private sector creates wealth -- which, in turn, allows us to fund the vital work of sending weapons to Mexican drug lords and prosecuting Roger Clemens. Yet there is a pervasive argument coming from Democrats these days -- and, no doubt, the president was thinking of this context when he gaffed -- that goes something like this: "You know, if local governments hadn't laid off all those public service workers -- a policy conservatives embrace, mind you -- the unemployment rate would be closer to 7 percent rather than 8 percent." Let's just say that few Americans are grousing about the decline in government productivity since those dreadful purges. Having a robust array of government services is a luxury, not an engine of growth. Though taking out a massive advance against future prosperity to artificially pump up employment statistics might be an effective way to win re-election, it is no way to judge economic well-being. A decline of wealth, on the other hand, is. A new survey from the Federal Reserve found that both American income and wealth have deteriorated dramatically since 2007, as the median real income has fallen by 7.7 percent -- everyone taking a hit but "retirees and other nonworking families." For the average American, net worth has declined by about 40 percent since 2007 -- from $126,000 to $77,000. The average family can say goodbye to about 18 years' worth of savings. Meanwhile, not only does the Bureau of Labor Statistics find unemployment rates of government workers at 4.2 percent but also studies find that public-sector employees -- free of the constraints of demand -- make more than their private-sector counterparts in similar vocations. What this signals to the president, naturally, is that the economy is jonesing for more unsustainable busywork and debt. Hey, good salaries and job security -- what's not to like?…

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Obama Campaign May Be Fooling Itself 5.30.12

2012-05-31 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

"Axelrod is endeavoring not to panic." So reads a sentence in John Heilemann's exhaustive article on Barack Obama's campaign in this week's New York magazine. Heilemann is a fine reporter and was co-author with Time's Mark Halperin of a best-selling book on the 2008 presidential campaign. While his sympathies are undoubtedly with Obama, he does a fine job of summarizing the arguments and tactics of both sides. And he's capable of directing snark at both candidates. Samples: Romney "seems to suffer a hybrid of affluenza and Tourette's." "A cynic might say that the liberation Obama feels is the freedom from, you know, actually governing." Heilemann's article is well-sourced. It's based on interviews with David Axelrod, the former White House aide now back in Chicago, David Plouffe, the 2008 manager now in the White House, and Jim Messina, the current campaign manager. The picture Heilemann draws is of campaign managers whose assumptions have been proved wrong and who seem to be fooling themselves about what will work in the campaign. One assumption that has been proved wrong is that the Obama campaign would raise $1 billion and that, as in 2008, far more money would be spent for Democrats than Republicans. Heilemann reports the campaign managers' alibis. Obama has given donors "shabby treatment," he writes. This of a president who has attended more fundraisers than his four predecessors combined. As for the Obama-authorized super PAC being $90 million short of its $100 million goal, well, it was late getting started and some money-givers don't like negative ads.…

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Under Obama, Things Keep Getting Worse 5.30.12

2012-05-31 :: Matt Towery
Length: 5s

No matter what propaganda we see from the elite media or from Obama supporters, the American people will not be fooled. The May report by The Conference Board showed consumer confidence at its lowest point in the last five months. That might shock those who swallow the Obama administration's argument that it has produced significant job growth and reduced unemployment. That's all wonderful until you run into someone who has been unemployed for years and is not even counted in the unemployment figures. The fact is that the American people can feel it when things are not improving, and despite being told that the nation is making the turn toward a strengthening economy, the public feels the squeeze at every turn. Yes, we keep being told things are getting better, like the advance estimate of the first quarter's gross domestic product, which was originally reported at 2.2 percent. Oops, that number was revised at the end of May to be a tepid 1.9 percent. That is hardly news for celebration and additional reason not to trust any rosy projections that might arrive right before the November elections. Oh, and by the way, sales for existing houses dropped in April, shocking the experts who did not see it coming. Of course we are all told, based on our antiquated way of measuring inflation, that the cost of goods and services in America is really not rising much at all. Perhaps that is the case, but it seems hard to leave a grocery store these days with any reasonable amount of products and not drop at least a hundred dollars. And all of this for food and other products that seem to be in smaller and smaller packages. I guess that's not inflation, it's just imagination. As for the thrill we should all have over the decline in gas prices, well, many just are not so overjoyed. We are nowhere near the average price for gas on the day President Obama was inaugurated. That price, even "deemed" as correct under this new print media "judge and jury" known as "Politifact," was $1.79. While oil prices rise and fall (and, curiously, often fall when the public starts to really complain), the price in most areas of the nation is well into the three dollar plus range. Now, of course, that's not inflation, it's just imagination.…

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Why Jeremiah Wright Matters -- Still, Part II 5.30.12

2012-05-31 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

Once upon a time, analysts, pundits and historians explored the relationship between a given subject and his father. We do so for possible insight into the subject's values, character, decision-making process, biases, interests, fears, etc. You know -- acorn, tree. But the standard intellectual inquiry, for some reason, does not apply to the long, intimate relationship between Barack Obama and the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, who called himself a "second father" to young Barack. Sen. Obama described his 20-year relationship with his pastor this way: "What I value most about Pastor Wright is not his day-to-day political advice. He's much more of a sounding board for me to make sure that I am speaking as truthfully about what I believe as possible and that I'm not losing myself in some of the hype and hoopla and stress that's involved in national politics." Indeed, Obama describes a relationship that is (SET ITAL) closer, far closer (END ITAL) than the relationship that many sons have with their fathers. Leftist New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd confidently places the actions, policies and decisions of George W. Bush at the feet of his father. Dowd insists, for example, that George W. Bush's decision to invade Iraq was Dad-driven. She called the Iraq War "a Freudian tango" that provided a "chance for W. to complete his transformation from the screwup son to the son who fixed his father's screwups." None of that fear of chemical or biological attack in the wake of 9/11 national security stuff for Dowd. No, it's all about Dad. In a recent column comparing blue-blooded "patricians" Bush-41 and Mitt Romney, Dowd writes, "Their political philosophies were not shaped by a passion for ideas as much as a desire to serve and an ambition to climb higher than their revered fathers. Pragmatism trumps ideology; survival trumps conviction. Both men, to the manner born in Greenwich and Bloomfield Hills, adapted uncomfortably to the fundamentalist tent meeting mood of the modern GOP, knowing their futures depended on Faustian deals with the right." But Obama and Wright's relationship tells us nothing.…

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CNN Plays Dirty Too 5.17.12

2012-05-17 :: R. Emmett Tyrrell
Length: 5s

WASHINGTON -- I first heard it two, perhaps two and a half years ago. A sage sitting in his New York City office pronounced it. Said the sage to me: "This is going to be the dirtiest presidential campaign in history." I would pass on my prescient friend's name, but he is a gentleman of high profile. It would be best if he were to continue his life unmolested by the Living Saint in the White House, whom a benighted majority of Americanos deposited there in 2009. Now, roughly six months from Election Day, I fear my friend was right. Financial donors to Mitt Romney have suffered unflattering attention from the press, from boycotters to labor thugs to stink bomb throwers. It is only a matter of time before the government begins harassing them with its vast array of federal agencies. Mitt Romney himself has suffered from the media and from assorted psychopaths. Yet, in time, what goes around comes around, as the phrase has it. President Barack Obama will get similar treatment, though not from the government. He controls the government, and thus far only a sole Marine has objected to him. He is Sgt. Gary Stein, and needless to say, he got the old heave ho.…

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Recent News Could Cause Panic for Obama Campaign 5.17.12

2012-05-17 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

Is it panic time at Obama headquarters in Chicago? You might get that impression from watching events -- and the polls -- over the past few weeks. In matchups against Mitt Romney, the president is leading by only 47 to 45 percent in the realclearpolitics.com average of recent polls. A CBS/New York Times panelback poll, in which interviewers call back respondents to a previous survey, showed Romney leading 46 to 43 percent -- and leading among women. That's despite the Democrats' charge that Republicans are waging a "war on women" by opposing requirements that all health insurance policies provide free contraceptives. Evidently that's not the only issue on the minds of American women. Or consider the clumsiness of Obama's announcement a week ago that after "evolving" he is now in favor of same-sex marriage. This was clearly not rolled out according to some long-term plan. On Sunday, May 6, Joe Biden told "Meet the Press" that he was "absolutely comfortable" with same-sex marriage. On Monday, press secretary Jay Carney was so battered with questions about the issue that he cancelled the daily press briefing for Tuesday. Then, at a hastily arranged interview with ABC News on Wednesday, Obama announced his switch. As a supporter of same-sex marriage, I am glad that Obama took the step that Dick Cheney took several years ago. Like many Americans, he changed his mind at some point and supported a policy that almost no one backed a quarter-century ago. Recent polls report that about half of Americans now back same-sex marriage. True, voters in North Carolina on Tuesday voted to ban same-sex marriage by a 61 to 39 percent margin. But only a few years ago, any political pro would have been astonished to see the issue get 39 percent support in a state where 44 percent of voters are white evangelical Protestants.…

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Will Gay Marriage Force Black Churches to Reconsider Democratic Party? 5.17.12

2012-05-17 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

President Obama's affirmation of gay marriage threatens to undermine the near-monolithic black support Obama enjoyed in 2008. Several members of the black clergy now say they intend to sit out the presidential election. One poll from last November found black opposition to gay marriage at 58 percent, higher than the rest of the country, which is about evenly split. The real question is this: What took black church leaders so long to reconsider their near blind support for the Democratic Party? The historical strength of black churches has been that of a moral and spiritual refuge in a once-hostile country of legalized slavery and Jim Crow. This explains why so many civil rights leaders came out of the church. The moral cause was just and clear: Equal rights mean equal rights -- for everyone. But equal rights and equal results are two very different things. The modern civil rights movement lost its way by failing to appreciate the difference. To achieve "equal results," the Democratic Party, among other things, demands redistribution of wealth, a government response to the "gap" between the rich and poor, higher minimum wages and higher taxes on the so-called rich. The Democratic Party opposes education vouchers, despite polls showing that black and Hispanic inner-city parents want them. The Democratic Party is the party of race-based preferences and also opposes privatization of Social Security.…

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Obama's Chicago Politics: Thuggery Not Civility 5.2.12

2012-05-03 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

It has been reported that the Obama campaign this year, as in 2008, has disabled or chosen not to use AVS in screening contributions made by credit card. That doesn't sound very important. But it's evidence of a modus operandi that strikes me as thuggish. AVS stands for Address Verification System. It's the software that checks whether the name of the cardholder matches his or her address. If a campaign doesn't use AVS, it can wind up accepting contributions from phony names or accepting contributions from foreigners, both of which are illegal. The 2008 Obama campaign pocketed money from "John Galt, 1957 Ayn Rand Lane, Galts Gulch CO 99999" and $174,000 from a woman in Missouri who told reporters she had given nothing and had never been billed. Presumably she would have noticed an extra charge of $174,000. The Obama campaign is evidently happy to pocket the money. After all, this is the president who, according to political scientist Brendan Doherty, has appeared at more fundraisers in three and a half years than his six predecessors did in 35 years. Obama has been to at least two fundraisers just in my apartment building. I often see police and Secret Service blocking traffic for a block around Washington's posh Jefferson Hotel at 16th and M Streets. Obama talks a good game on transparency and openness, but he's ready to flout the law by avoiding AVS and to break his high-minded campaign promises.…

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Obama Losing Rock-star Status Among Young Voters 4.27.12

2012-04-30 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

Last week, Barack Obama delivered speeches at universities in Chapel Hill, N.C., Iowa City, Iowa, and Boulder, Colo. The trip was, press secretary Jay Carney assured us, official government business, not political campaigning. It's part of a pattern. Neil Munro of the Daily Caller has counted 130 appearances by the president, vice president, their spouses, White House officials, and Cabinet secretaries at colleges and universities since spring 2011. Obviously, the Obama campaign strategists are worried that he cannot duplicate his 66 to 32 percent margin among young voters back in 2008. Recent surveys of young people show inconsistent results. Gallup's tracking shows Obama leading Mitt Romney 64 to 29 percent, and a Harvard Institute of Politics poll shows him leading Romney 43 to 26 percent among those who said they had an opinion. But a March survey of 18- to 24 year olds by the Public Religion Research Institute showed Obama ahead of "a Republican" by only 48 to 41 percent. Only 52 percent had favorable opinions of Obama, and 43 percent had unfavorable opinions. Where the surveys seem to be in accord is that young voters are less engaged, less likely to vote and less enthusiastic about Obama than in the days when he was proclaiming, "We are the change we are seeking."…

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"Crucify Them": The Obama Way 4.26.12

2012-04-26 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

One of President Obama's radical eco-bureaucrats has apologized for confirming an indelible truth: This White House treats politically incorrect private industries as public enemies who deserve regulatory death sentences. Environmental Protection Agency administrator Al Armendariz, an avowed greenie on leave from Southern Methodist University, gave a little-noticed speech in 2010 outlining his sadistic philosophy. "I was in a meeting once, and I gave an analogy to my staff about my philosophy of enforcement, and I think it was probably a little crude and maybe not appropriate for the meeting, but I'll go ahead and tell you what I said," he began. In a video obtained and released by Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., Armendariz then shared his bloody analogy: "It was kind of like how the Romans used to conquer little villages in the Mediterranean. They'd go into a little Turkish town somewhere, they'd find the first five guys they saw, and they would crucify them. And then you know that town was really easy to manage for the next few years. ... So, that's our general philosophy." Echoing President Obama's "punch back twice as hard" treatment of his political enemies, Armendariz explained to his underlings that "you hit them as hard as you can, and you make examples out of them, and there is a deterrent effect there. And, companies that are smart see that, they don't want to play that game, and they decide at that point that it's time to clean up." In other words: Suck up, fly left, or face prosecution. The goal isn't a cleaner environment. The goal is political incitement of fear.…

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Obama Administration's Repeated Abuses Are Extension of Extreme Liberalism 4.26.12

2012-04-26 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

Every day, we get a new kick in the gut from the Obama administration. Most recently, Environmental Protection Agency Region 6 Administrator Al Armendariz was caught on video articulating his view of the agency's role in enforcing its regulations. Aremendariz said: "It was kind of like how the Romans used to, you know, conquer villages in the Mediterranean. They'd go into a little Turkish town somewhere; they'd find the first five guys they saw, and they'd crucify them. Then, you know, that town was really easy to manage for the next few years. ... It's a deterrent factor." This man should be fired -- yesterday. White House press secretary Jay Carney risibly says Aremendariz wasn't articulating the attitude of the administration. Sadly, that's precisely what he was articulating. Indeed, we've seen this attitude by the administration in countless examples, from Obama's handling of the Obamacare legislation and restructuring of the GM loans to the administration's New Black Panther voter intimidation case to Solyndra to Fast and Furious to -- oh, never mind; I have to keep this to less than 20,000 words. None of this should surprise us. Obama is the quintessential liberal, and his administration's recurring abuses are simply the logical extension of liberal hubris born of a self-righteous certainty of the superiority of leftist ideas. This inevitably leads to dictatorial usurpations and lawlessness from the liberal ruling class. These liberals are sure not only that their ideas and policies are more effective but also that they are morally imperative -- and that conservative ideas and policies are not just ineffective but also woefully immoral.…

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Carter Redux? 4.26.12

2012-04-26 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Every new datum on economic stagnation -- such as Thursday's Labor Department announcement that unemployment claims remain at a three-month high -- increases the temptation to compare the 2012 presidential race to 1980's. Both years feature a Democratic incumbent, elected on a surge of high hopes, who must face the voters after four years of disappointment. In both cases, the economy is a drag on the president. In both cases, the incumbent has attempted to demonize his opposition in order to avoid running on his record. In both cases, the challenger was regarded, at first, as easy to defeat. It's seductive to believe that 2012 will turn out the way 1980 did, with voters concluding that the challenger was not the ogre the president warned of, seeing him instead as the more presidential of the two. It may happen. But the Romney campaign and those who wish it well have to grapple with the fact that the country has changed in the past 32 years in ways that don't advantage Republicans.…

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Shrinking Problem: Illegal Immigration From Mexico 4.26.12

2012-04-26 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

The illegal immigration problem is going away. That's the conclusion I draw from the latest report of the Pew Hispanic Center on Mexican immigration to the United States. Pew's demographers have carefully combed through statistics compiled by the U.S. Census Bureau, the Department of Homeland Security and the Mexican government, and have come up with estimates of the flow of migrants from and back to Mexico. Their work seems to be as close to definitive as possible. They conclude that from 2005 to 2010 some 1.39 million people came from Mexico to the United States and 1.37 million went from the U.S. to Mexico. "The largest wave of immigration in history from a single country to the United States," they write, "has come to a standstill." The turning point seems to have come with the collapse of housing prices and the onset of recession in 2007. Annual immigration from Mexico dropped from peaks of 770,000 in 2000 and 670,000 in 2004 to 140,000 in 2010.…

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If Mormonism Is Fair Game, so Is Jeremiah Wright 4.26.12

2012-04-26 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

A well-regarded Republican strategist at a private gathering recently warned, "And just wait until they play that Mormon card." By "they," he meant the Obama campaign and its complicit media cheerleaders. Lawrence O'Donnell, only days later, gave his viewers a historical tutorial on the Mormon religion, darkly suggesting that we all should be afraid, very afraid. The Democratic governor of Montana, Brian Schweitzer, called Mitt Romney's grandfather a "polygamist." This is actually good news for the Romney campaign. By making Romney's Mormonism an issue, the Obama campaign has, as trial lawyers like to say, "reopened" the issue of religion. The Romney campaign can therefore revisit the Rev. Jeremiah Wright and Obama's close relationship to him. True, Obama apparently severed ties to Wright, but Obama did so only after the very salvation of his first presidential campaign depended upon it. Wright, Obama's pastor for some 20 years, was described by Obama as his "spiritual advisor." Wright married the Obamas, baptized their children and blessed their home. One of Wright's friends is the anti-Semitic advocate of racial separatism, Minister Louis Farrakhan. "Trumpet Magazine," published by Wright's daughter and formerly promoted on the church's website, once honored Farrakhan in a cover story as a man who "truly epitomized greatness." In the article, Wright lauded Farrakhan as "one of the 20th and 21st century giants of the African-American religious experience."…

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Romney Should Show He's a Leader, and Here's How 4.19.12

2012-04-20 :: Linda Chavez
Length: 5s

If Mitt Romney is to have any chance of beating President Barack Obama in November, he must win a larger share of the Hispanic vote than current polls suggest he will. And he won't unless he solves his immigration problem. It's a problem of his own making. He decided that beating up on illegal immigrants would boost his popularity among those suspicious that he was really a moderate Republican. In doing so, he injected an issue into the campaign that had largely fizzled -- and for good reason. Illegal immigration is down to historical lows -- primarily because the U.S. economy continues to be sluggish, so fewer people want to come here. Romney has plenty of advisers trying to figure out how best to soften his negative image among Hispanic voters. We can expect to see him wolfing down tacos and mumbling a few phrases in Spanish in the days ahead. But neither tactic will do anything but make him look foolish. What he should do is rid his campaign of the likes of Kris Kobach -- the zealot behind several state anti-illegal immigrant laws being challenged in the courts right now. The Romney campaign already has started to back away from its association with Kobach, but that's just the first step. The next thing he needs to do is to speak honestly and openly to the American people about the true state of immigration to the U.S. -- legal and illegal.…

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If CAIR's Attacking You, You Must be Good 4.19.12

2012-04-20 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

"Where are all the moderate Muslims?" It's a question often posed by Americans who watch with disgust as the Council on American-Islamic Relations and other apologists for radical Islam hog all of the attention. CAIR, which was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the terror financing Holy Land Foundation case, and which regularly denounces any effort to combat radical Islam as anti-Muslim prejudice, is routinely described in the press as a Muslim "civil rights" group. Moderate American Muslims exist though. And it's not that hard to find them. Just see who CAIR and the Muslim Public Affairs Council are denouncing. This week, they are after Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, founder and president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy. Sen. Mitch McConnell has appointed Jasser to serve on the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, and this has sent the most prominent Muslim American organizations to the barricades. A dishonest character assassination campaign has been launched against Jasser, urging Muslims to protest the appointment. CAIR spokesman Ibrahim Hooper told The Blaze that Jasser "has long been viewed by American Muslims and the colleagues in the civil liberties community as a mere sock puppet for Islam haters and an enabler of Islamophobia." That gives you the flavor of CAIR's level of discourse.…

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To Win Burbs, Romney May Pick 'Double-vanilla' Veep 4.18.12

2012-04-19 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

Some 20 million Americans in primaries and caucuses will take part in selecting the Republican presidential nominee. One person will choose the vice presidential nominee. This has long struck me as absurd: One person choosing someone who, as a result, might become president for as long as 10 years. But just about everyone in politics says it's the only proper way. Over the last 25 years, presidential nominees of both parties have engaged in conscientious consultation and have mostly made pretty good choices. No more picks at five o'clock in the morning to meet a convention deadline. For even longer, every vice president has done constructive work of governance. Voters have come to expect a VP nominee who can contribute substance more than one who can balance a ticket. Ticket-balancing suggestions have come in to Mitt Romney. He should endorse a fiery cultural conservative, some Republicans say, although he's not likely to name the undisciplined Rick Santorum. He needs to name a Latino, say others. But the most obvious choice, the eloquent Sen. Marco Rubio, has reiterated his unwillingness to run. So has New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez.…

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Five Myths of the 'Racist' Criminal Justice System 4.18.12

2012-04-19 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

Calling America's criminal justice system "racist" is not confined to "civil rights leaders" like the Revs. Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton. Then-Sen. Barack Obama, during the 2008 presidential campaign, said it, too. Blacks and whites, said Obama, "are arrested at very different rates, are convicted at very different rates (and) receive very different sentences ... for the same crime." When the man who became president of the United States says this -- the No. 1 law enforcement officer -- it must, therefore, be true. Let's examine five major assumptions behind this assertion.…

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Ouch! Decade of Obamacare Will Cost $1,160 billion 4.12.12

2012-04-14 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

How much will Obamacare -- call it the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act if you like -- cost over the next 10 years? More than you've been led to believe, reports Charles Blahous of George Mason University's Mercatus Center. To be specific, he projects it will add $1,160 billion to net federal spending over the next 10 years and at least $340 billion to federal budget deficits in that time. Blahous was appointed by Barack Obama as one of two public trustees of the Social Security and Medicare programs. He worked on these issues in George W. Bush's administration and submitted his Mercatus paper for anonymous peer review. Why does he say Obamacare will increase spending when the Obama administration, citing Congressional Budget Office numbers, promised it will save money? One reason is that the CBO said Obamacare's "Class Act" provisions would save money, since the government would collect premiums immediately but not pay off policyholders until later.…

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You Pay for Warren Buffet's Medicare 4.12.12

2012-04-13 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

The president is barnstorming around the nation hoping to enrage voters at the injustice that the wealthy pay fewer taxes than the middle class. "Now that's wrong," Obama objected, "That's not fair." It also isn't true. According to the National Taxpayers Union, in 2009, the top 1 percent of earners paid 36.7 percent of income taxes. The top 5 percent paid 58.6 percent. And the top 10 percent paid more than 70 percent. Social Security and Medicare taxes fall more evenly on all income groups (except the poor) but are lower. Further, Obama had the opportunity to repeal the Bush tax cuts he claims to find so odious when his party controlled both houses of Congress, but he chose to extend them instead. This is political demagoguery of a high order, attempting to achieve re-election by whipping up class envy and finding "kulaks" to scapegoat. While it isn't true that the rich are not paying their fair share, it is true that you are subsidizing Warren Buffett's Medicare. This is but one of the many injustices and inefficiencies of our current health care system that will only worsen if Obamacare is not repealed or overturned by the Supreme Court. The one and only thing that Democrats and Republicans agree on regarding health care in the United States is that costs are too high and rising at an unsustainable rate, though Democrats engage in denial on the subject of Medicare's solvency. Yet with the very next breath, Democrats nearly always argue that the pre-Obamacare health system was a "free-market" system that failed.…

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Thank You, Ms. Rosen 4.12.12

2012-04-13 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

Though everyone is talking about Democratic strategist and Obama confidant Hilary Rosen's insolent remarks about Ann Romney, I want to discuss them, too, because they reveal her leftist mindset. Rosen didn't misspeak; she spoke deliberately and with passion. And when given a chance to retract or soften her remarks, she doubled down -- at least initially. Her comments came in a segment on CNN with Anderson Cooper. Cooper pointed out that in the current economy, "women are seeing jobs come back much more slowly than men are," and he asked Rosen, essentially, whether there was anything wrong with the Romney campaign's highlighting that fact and "reaching out to women on an issue that they care about, on the economy." "Guess what?" asked Rosen. "His wife has actually never worked a day in her life. She's never really dealt with the kinds of economic issues that a majority of the women in this country are facing in terms of how do we feed our kids, how do we send them to school and why we worry about their future."…

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Feminists Limit Women's Choices 4.12.12

2012-04-13 :: Linda Chavez
Length: 5s

Not since Hillary Clinton's infamous remark during the 1992 presidential campaign -- "I suppose I could have stayed home and baked cookies and had teas" -- has a prominent Democratic woman so insulted full-time homemakers. Speaking on CNN Wednesday, Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen said that Ann Romney has "never worked a day in her life" and, therefore, can't understand the struggles of most women. Rather than apologize for sticking her thumb in the eyes of millions of American homemakers, Rosen doubled down when critics responded. "This isn't about whether Ann Romney or I or other women of some means can afford to make a choice to stay home and raise kids," she said. Talk about a "war on women"; this sounds like a war on work-at-home moms. In Rosen's view, they're either lazy or privileged. Nothing about Rosen's comments surprises me. I know her slightly -- we are both frequent panelists on PBS' all-female public affairs program, "To the Contrary" -- and she's a perfectly nice woman. But she's also a hard-core feminist -- and that's the problem.…

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Romney Trails Obama, but Key Numbers Break His Way 4.11.12

2012-04-12 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

Now that Rick Santorum has "suspended" his campaign, we can stop pretending and can say what has been clear for weeks: Mitt Romney will be the Republican nominee for president. The general election campaign has begun. In some quarters, it is assumed that Barack Obama will be re-elected without too much difficulty. There are reports that staffers at Obama's Chicago headquarters consider Romney's candidacy a joke.…

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Leftist California Professors "Corrupt" Higher Education 4.11.12

2012-04-12 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

I don't know any polite way of putting this -- but he's lying," said professor John Ellis, president of the National Association of Scholars' California division. Ellis was reacting to a critic's characterization of the NAS's damning report, "A Crisis of Competence: The Corrupting Effect of Political Activism in the University of California." California taxpayers spend $2.8 billion to educate the more than 230,000 students at the 10 campuses that comprise the UC system.…

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They Don’t Know Us 4.2.12

2012-04-02 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

Apparently, many liberals were disappointed in the administration’s performance before the Supreme Court. They felt that the government’s lawyer, Solicitor General Donald Verrilli, did not respond effectively to the challenges of some of the conservative justices. The editor of Commentary, John Podhoretz, offered an explanation on his magazine’s blog. “American liberals,” he wrote, “know their own language, but they don’t know the language of their ideological and partisan opposite numbers. ... Conservatives speak liberal, but for liberals in the United States, conservatism might as well be Esperanto.”…

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Obama Touts His Record 4.2.12

2012-04-02 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

In his excellent daily Web news summary, "The Transom," Ben Domenech says that President Obama's speech at the Portland Museum of Art on Saturday "is likely to be Obama's campaign speech from here on out." He's probably correct, so let's take a look, with an eye to whether it's likely to work. Obama's template is nothing new. He first repeats his claim as to the catastrophic conditions he inherited from President Bush. "It's hard to remember sometimes how perilous things were when I was sworn in." So Obama took immediate action "to save the auto industry, to get the banks lending again" and to make sure state and local governments didn't lay off teachers and first responders. Indeed, he moved so fast that "people didn't fully appreciate the scope and magnitude of what got done in those first six months, that first year."…

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If Obama Had a Son 4.2.12

2012-04-02 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

When he was first sworn in as Attorney General, Eric Holder made one of the more obtuse comments in political history. When it comes to issues of race, Holder declared, we are "a nation of cowards ... we, as average Americans, simply do not talk enough with each other about race." Really? It seems to me that we talk endlessly, and usually unproductively, about race. We love nothing better in America than a good racial angle. The Trayvon Martin case pushes all the buttons. Black provocateurs such as Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton get to strut their stuff. The liberal media get to distort and cheerlead for one side. Conservatives get to indulge their disdain for the race hustlers, and everyone's blood pressure rises. We are now engaged in another fruitless shouting match about whether young black men are being hunted on the streets of America and whether "stand your ground" laws are dangerous. But as the estimable Ann Coulter has pointed out, Florida's "stand your ground" law was irrelevant to the Martin case. Whichever version of events that night you believe: A) that Zimmerman followed and shot Martin in cold blood; or B) that Zimmerman shot Martin in the midst of a fight; the law, which does not require a person who fears for his life to retreat before using deadly force, is not implicated.…

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The Invincible Dogma 4.2.12

2012-04-02 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

A long-standing legal charade was played out again recently, when Federal Express paid $3 million to settle an employment discrimination case brought by the U.S. Department of Labor. Federal Express was accused of both racial discrimination and sex discrimination. FedEx denied it. Why then did they pay the $3 million? Because it can cost a lot more than $3 million to fight a discrimination case. Years ago, the Sears department store chain spent $20 million fighting a sex discrimination charge that took 15 years to make its way through the legal labyrinth. In the end, Sears won -- if spending $20 million and getting nothing in return can be called winning.…

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Three Perilous Previews of Obamacare 4.2.12

2012-04-02 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

Because of the nation's and Supreme Court's war over Obamacare this past week, I'm deferring until next week Part 2 of my article last week, "Not All Presidential Orders Are Created Equal," to address this raging debate. (END ITAL) Though I have concern that every American citizen has affordable health care, too, I have grave concerns about the opinion that the federal government holds the true solution. History shows that whenever government oversees personal welfare (such as with Medicare, Medicaid, welfare and Social Security), the program is inept, broken, intrusive, impersonalized, oppressive or often bankrupt.…

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Dupes for the State 4.2.12

2012-04-02 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

Public misunderstanding, ignorance and possibly contempt for liberty play into the hands of people who want to control our lives. Responses to my recent column "Compliant Americans" brought this home to me. In it, I argued that the anti-tobacco movement became the template and inspiration for other forms of government intrusion, such as bans on restaurants serving foie gras, McDonald's giving Happy Meals with toys, and confiscating a child's home-prepared lunch because it didn't meet Department of Agriculture guidelines. A few responses read like this: "Smoking is different because that actually affects other people. We should be living by the notion that you should be able to do whatever you want as long as you don't hurt other people. Smoking hurts other people." If we banned or restricted all activities that affect, harm or have the possibility of harming other people, it wouldn't be a very nice life. Let's look at what can affect or harm other people. Non-obese people are harmed by obesity, as they have to pay more for health care, through either higher taxes or higher insurance premiums. That harm could be reduced by a national version of a measure introduced in the Mississippi Legislature in 2008 by state Rep. W.T. Mayhall that in part read, "An act to prohibit certain food establishments from serving food to any person who is obese, based on criteria prescribed by the state Department of Health." The measure would have revoked licenses of food establishments that violated the provisions of the act. Fortunately, the measure never passed, but there's always a next time.…

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Americans Are Worrying About the Constitution Again 3.30.12

2012-03-31 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

"I don't worry about the Constitution," said Rep. Phil Hare, Democrat of Illinois, at a town hall meeting where voters questioned his support of the legislation that became Obamacare. You can find the clip on youtube.com, where it has 462,084 hits. That was before the 2010 election, in which Hare, running for a third term in a district designed by Democrats to elect a Democrat, was defeated 53 to 43 percent by Bobby Schilling, proprietor of a pizza parlor in East Moline. A lot of politicians are worrying about the Constitution these days. Liberal commentators were shocked this past week when in three days of oral argument in the lawsuits challenging Obamacare, five Supreme Court justices -- a majority -- asked questions strongly suggesting they think the legislation is unconstitutional. And so the Constitution -- and the limits it places on Congress' powers -- is once again part of our politics. And will continue to be, whichever way the Court rules.…

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Trayvon and the Good Victim 3.29.12

2012-03-31 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Just as Rahm Emmanuel didn't want to let a good crisis go to waste, the national press doesn't want to let a good victim go to waste. The death of Trayvon Martin is a terrible thing, but the usual suspects are hijacking his death to create a morality play. Whenever this happens, and it happens with some frequency in American life, truth is corrupted. About 153 young black men are killed every week in America -- 94 percent of them at the hands of other young black males. Only one of those who were murdered on Feb. 26 has dominated national news coverage -- because his killer was not black. There is an etiquette to discussing ethnicity that goes straight out the window if the press decides to create a racial villain. Normally, if a person is of mixed ancestry, as George Zimmerman is, he gets the benefit of the doubt on being a minority. A person with mixed ancestry, such as Cameron Diaz or Bill Richardson, would never be called "half white." But Zimmerman became, in the phrase adopted by The New York Times, a "white Hispanic."…

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Obama Doubling Down on His Leftist Radicalism 3.29.12

2012-03-31 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

You can't even casually surf the Internet on any given day without numerous reminders of just how radical President Obama is -- and this is during an election year, when it should be in his political interest to mask his radicalism. Minding my own business, I happened on an article by Jacob Laksin on FrontPageMag.com, titled "Obama's Pick for World Bank Hates Capitalism." I'd heard a bit about this before but hadn't yet studied it. I'm so used to Obama's extremism that such revelations hardly move me, much less surprise me. I know where he stands; I just wish everyone else did. Obama has nominated Dartmouth College President Jim Yong Kim to head the World Bank. In 2000, Kim edited a collection of studies under the title "Dying for Growth: Global Inequality and the Health of the Poor." The "book's radical central premise," writes Laksin, is that "capitalism and economic growth (are) bad for the poor across the world." Kim co-wrote the introduction, which includes the claim that the book shows "that the quest for growth in GDP and corporate profits has in fact worsened the lives of millions of women and men." It says that even in those instances in which free trade and free markets have led to economic growth, they've done so without benefiting "those living in 'dire poverty,' one-fourth of the world's population." Can't you just hear Obama himself in those words?…

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Not Black and White 3.29.12

2012-03-31 :: Linda Chavez
Length: 5s

It may be months before we know what actually happened the night Trayvon Martin was shot in Sanford, Fla. on February 26. But many seem to have already decided that this was a brutal case of racial profiling and vigilante justice, emblematic of lingering racism in America. Martin's parents, who understandably want justice for their son, have been joined by a plethora of activists, politicians, commentators and celebrities in demanding that the shooter, George Zimmerman, be arrested and tried for murder. The Justice Department has gotten in on the act as well, investigating whether the shooting constituted a hate crime based on a an inaudible comment by Zimmerman on his 911 call that some have alleged was a racial slur. But turning this tragic incident into a symbol of racism is wrong and reeks of opportunism on the part of racial showmen like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson. Most homicides in the U.S. involve a victim and a perpetrator who are of the same race. But cross-racial homicides are more common among strangers, as in the Martin shooting. According to the most recent data available from the Justice Department, blacks have a homicide victim rate that is six times higher than whites, but their rate for committing homicide is seven times higher than whites.…

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Eco-Scams Are as Easy as "A123" 3.29.12

2012-03-31 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

While President Obama was busy lambasting Big Oil tax breaks on Thursday, yet another one of his environmental welfare recipients (the very kind he wants to redistribute oil subsidies to) was teetering on the edge of bankruptcy. Who needs to win the Mega Millions lottery? Start a pie-in-the-sky eco-boondoggle, and a half-billion-dollar jackpot ripe for squandering is all yours! The Solyndra of the week is A123 Systems, an electric vehicle battery company based in Massachusetts. The firm also has battery plants in Michigan, where former Democratic Gov. Jennifer Granholm once heralded A123 as a federal stimulus "success story." Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited the company headquarters and hailed it as a "great example of how Recovery Act funding is helping American companies." In addition to nearly $300 million in Obama Recovery Act funds, Granholm kicked in another $135 million in tax credits and subsidies to bribe the company to keep jobs in her state. How's the return on government investment? This green dud will have taxpayers seeing red. A123's official company motto is "Power. Safety. Life." But the firm's reality is "Out of power. Endangering safety. Clinging to life."…

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Obama's Gaffe Hints at Hidden Agenda in Second Term 3.28.12

2012-03-29 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

"I actually did vote for the $87 billion before I voted against it." So said John Kerry, in Huntington, W.V., on Tuesday, March 16, 2004, two weeks after he had clinched the Democratic presidential nomination by carrying every state but Vermont in the Super Tuesday primaries. Kerry was responding to an ad run by George W. Bush's campaign criticizing his 2003 vote against an $87 billion supplemental appropriation for the Iraq war. Two days later, the Bush campaign ran an edited version of the ad with the "actually did vote" footage added. Kerry had a defensible position. He did actually vote for a Democratic version of the supplemental that included a provision raising tax rates on high earners. He voted against the Republican version without the tax increase, knowing it would pass. The troops would not go unfunded. But those 14 words were repeated again and again by the Bush campaign in the next eight months. Kerry was labeled a flip-flopper, and delegates at the Republican National Convention brandished flip-flops for the TV cameras one night.…

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Jesse: Trayvon Proves 'Blacks Are Under Attack' 3.28.12

2012-03-29 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

"Blacks are under attack," said the Rev. Jesse Jackson, irresponsibly turning the Florida shooting death of an unarmed black teenager, Trayvon Martin, at the hands of Hispanic neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman into a barometer of black-white "race-relations." President Barack Obama, three years past his inauguration as American's first black president, weighed in, too. As when he accused the Cambridge police of "acting stupidly," Obama injected race, but this time a little less directly: "If I had a son, he'd look like Trayvon." The implication, of course, is that race undoubtedly played a role in the death of Trayvon Martin. A special prosecutor as well as a Florida grand jury will examine the case, re-interview all the witnesses and go over all the evidence. Zimmerman may well be charged with murder, and a racially motivated one at that. Or the prosecutor may find the evidence insufficient to convince a jury that Zimmerman did not act in self-defense.…

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Toward the Conquest of World Poverty 3.28.12

2012-03-29 :: Steve Chapman
Length: 5s

Progress can often be defined as the stuff that happens while humanity is preoccupied with everything that is going wrong. On the surface, the first decade of the 21st century looks like an ugly parade of terrorism, war and economic convulsion. But in one important sense it stands as possibly the greatest decade in human history. And that's no accident. Among the most vicious enemies of human welfare is poverty. In a world plagued with limited resources, bad governments and unsound economic policies, it often appears to be an inescapable scourge. Most people paid no attention in 2000 when the United Nations proclaimed the goal of halving the number of earth's inhabitants living in extreme poverty by 2015, compared to 1990. But way ahead of schedule, the target has already been hit. For the first time since it began tracking, says a new World Bank report, "the data indicate a decline in both the poverty rate and the number of poor in all six regions of the developing world."…

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The ObamaCare Penalty That Isn't 3.27.12

2012-03-27 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

On Monday, U.S. Solicitor General Donald Verrilli told the Supreme Court the "shared responsibility payment" required of Americans who fail to obtain government-approved medical coverage is not a tax. On Tuesday, he said it is. In the first instance, Verrilli was urging the Court to address the constitutionality of the individual health insurance mandate in spite of an 1867 law that ordinarily bars legal challenges to taxes that have not been collected yet. On the following day, he was arguing that, even if the mandate cannot be justified as a regulation of interstate commerce, it is a legitimate exercise of Congress's tax power.…

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Is Obama Killing His Senators? 3.27.12

2012-03-27 :: Dick Morris
Length: 5s

Outside the beltway, polling indicates a massacre of Senate Democrats is in the offing in the 2012 elections. Currently, Rasmussen's polls have Republicans leading Democrats for eight Senate seats now held by Democrats. Bill Nelson is six behind Connie Mack in Florida; Claire McCaskill is 10 behind Sarah Steelman in Missouri; John Tester is three behind Denny Rehberg in Montana; Sherrod Brown is four behind Josh Mandel in Ohio. And for open seats, George Allen is three up on Tim Kaine in Virginia; Jon Bruning is 20 ahead of Bob Kerrey in Nebraska; Tommy Thompson is 15 ahead in Wisconsin; and either Rick Berg or Duane Sand will undoubtedly win in North Dakota. And the races in New Mexico and Michigan show the Republican candidate less than four behind. (The GOP might lose Massachusetts and Maine, but a massive wipeout of Democrats is coming.) Why? Obviously, the shift in party identification has a lot to do with it. While Washington insiders are chortling about Obama's likely re-election, those who are paying attention know that there has been an eight-point party identification shift from Democrat to Republican, two points of which took place after the 2010 elections. Not only is this shift going to doom Obama's chances, but it will also engulf Democratic candidates up and down the line.…

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The War on Wisconsin 3.27.12

2012-03-27 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

Now is the time for all good tea partiers to come to the aid of Wisconsin. Fiscally conservative leaders in the Badger State are under coordinated siege from Big Labor, the White House, the liberal media and the judiciary. The yearlong campaign of union thuggery, family harassment and intimidation of Republican donors and businesses is about to escalate even further. This is the price the Right pays for doing the right thing. The most visible target is Gov. Scott Walker, who faces recall on June 5 over his tough package of state budget and public employee union reforms. Three state GOP legislators -- Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, Sen. Van Wanggaard and Sen. Terry Moulton -- also face recall. A fourth target, staunch union reformer and Second Amendment advocate Sen. Pam Galloway, announced she was stepping down last week -- leaving the legislature deadlocked and Democratic strategists salivating.…

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Geraldo's Point 3.26.12

2012-03-26 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

It is not often that I agree with Geraldo Rivera, but recently he said something very practical and potentially life-saving, when he urged black and Hispanic parents not to let their children go around wearing hoodies. There is no point in dressing like a hoodlum when you are not a hoodlum, even though that has become a fashion for some minority youths, including the teenager who was shot and killed in a confrontation in Florida. I don't know the whole story of that tragedy, any more than those who are making loud noises in the media do, but that is something that we have trials for.…

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Obamacare: Will the Court Vindicate Itself? 3.26.12

2012-03-26 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

If there has ever been a case that could vindicate the Supreme Court as a guardian of liberty or incriminate it as freedom's thief, it is the court's present consideration of the Affordable Care Act. At the founding of the republic, the Anti-Federalist opponents of the Constitution warned that to grant the power to declare laws unconstitutional to an unelected and life-tenured Supreme Court could subvert the democratic republic and threaten our liberties.…

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Profiling 3.26.12

2012-03-26 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

Right now, there isn't enough known about the circumstances surrounding the fatal shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, a black, by George Zimmerman, a 28-year-old part-Hispanic, during his neighborhood watch tour in an Orlando, Fla., suburb. If evidence emerges that Zimmerman's actions were not justified, he should be prosecuted and punished; however, there's a larger issue that few people understand or have the courage to acknowledge, namely that black and young has become synonymous with crime and, hence, suspicion. To make that connection does not make one a racist. Let's look at it. Twelve years ago, a black Washington, D.C., commissioner warned cabbies, most of whom were black, against picking up dangerous-looking passengers. She described "dangerous-looking" as a "young black guy ... with shirttail hanging down longer than his coat, baggy pants, unlaced tennis shoes." She also warned cabbies to stay away from low-income black neighborhoods. Did that make the D.C. commissioner a racist?…

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Priscilla Buckley, RIP 3.26.12

2012-03-26 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

When I see Priscilla Buckley, who died over the weekend at age 90, in my mind's eye, she is roaring with laughter. That's how you would find her much of the time during her 43 years as managing editor of National Review. She so reveled in a good story or a bon mot. Her chin would tilt up, and her sunbeam grin would turn her blue eyes into little half moons of mirth. It was particularly true when brother Bill was around. The two spent a lifetime chortling over the lighter side of life. And when you were around them, the world seemed altogether brighter. Bill Buckley was the founder, owner, editor, and guiding spirit of National Review. But Priscilla, his sister, set the daily tone at the offices on East 35th Street in Manhattan. Her rule was benevolent and irenic, thank God, because magazines of opinion are known for eccentric and prickly characters, and NR was no exception. But while writers would be late with their copy or fail to show up for meetings or squabble with their editors, everyone seemed mentally to tuck his shirt in when Priscilla was around. She was so gracious, professional and discerning that people wanted to be better in her presence. (They didn't always succeed.)…

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Not All Presidential Orders Are Created Equal (Part 1) 3.26.12

2012-03-26 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

In his typical duck-'n'-dodge fashion, President Barack Obama spewed his 115th executive order upon the American public on a late Friday afternoon, March 16. Cloaked in one of Obama's candy-coated, grandiloquent titles, the "National Defense Resources Preparedness" executive order set the blogosphere ablaze this past week. Canada Free Press ran an article titled "Obama Executive Order: Peacetime Martial Law!" An Examiner.com article similarly declared that the order would "nationalize everything" and "allow for a civilian draft." And the Drudge Report ran a story headlined "Martial Law? Obama issues Executive Order: the National Defense Resources Preparedness."…

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Are the "Less Fortunate" Less Fortunate? 3.26.12

2012-03-26 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

In his front-page-of-the-business-section "Economic Scene" column in The New York Times last week, Eduardo Porter wrote, "The United States does less than other rich countries to transfer income from the affluent to the less fortunate." Think about that sentence for a moment. It ends oddly. Logic dictates that it should have said, "transfer income from the affluent to the (SET ITAL) less affluent," (END ITAL) not the (SET ITAL) less fortunate. (END ITAL) But for Porter, as for the left generally, those who are not affluent are not merely "less affluent," they are "less fortunate."…

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Obama's Algae Racket 3.20.12

2012-03-22 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

Pond scum stinks. And so do the Obama administration's enormous, taxpayer-funded "investments" in politically connected biofuel companies. While the president embarks on a green rehabilitation tour this week to quell growing public outrage about big green boondoggles, the White House continues to cultivate a cozy algae racket. Obama's promotion of algae as a fuel source at a campaign speech in Miami last month caught the nation's attention. But algae companies have been banking on administration support from Day One. In December 2008, when the White House announced the nomination of Energy Secretary Steven Chu, the CEO of Florida-based biofuels startup Algenol, Paul Woods, exulted to Time magazine: "You see this smile on my face? It's not going away. Everyone is really excited by this."…

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Obama Doesn't Care About Debt 3.20.12

2012-03-22 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

As you may have heard, Senate Democrats haven't bothered to present a budget in more than 1,000 days and counting -- which, unlike many pundits, I don't find particularly upsetting, considering we've been free of a new Democratic budget for 1,000-plus days and counting. This week, though, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., offered up the House's budget outline, which -- whether misguided, genius, flawed or whatever you might think of it -- is a pretty earnest reflection of the concerns of about half the country. The primitive half. So the White House -- where rational, enlightened grown-ups are represented -- responded like so:…

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Race and Rhetoric 3.19.12

2012-03-20 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

One of the things that turned up, during a long-overdue cleanup of my office, was an old yellowed copy of the New York Times dated July 24, 1992. One of the front-page headlines said: "White-Black Disparity in Income Narrowed in 80's, Census Shows." The 1980s? Wasn't that the years of the Reagan administration, the "decade of greed," the era of "neglect" of the poor and minorities, if not "covert racism"? More recently, during the administration of America's first black president, a 2011 report from the Pew Research Center has the headline, "Wealth Gaps Rise to Record Highs Between Whites, Blacks and Hispanics." were; look at Hayes!…

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Obama and the Future Fallacy 3.19.12

2012-03-20 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Speaking to students at a Maryland community college, President Obama indulged one of the left's favorite vanities -- the claim to represent "the future." His topic was energy. The president warned against Republicans who want "an energy strategy for the last century that traps us in the past." He compared today's Republicans who are less enthusiastic than he about government subsidies for "wind, solar and biofuels," to the "flat earth society" and to President Rutherford B. Hayes, who supposedly disdained the telephone. The president had those students chuckling and grinning and feeling smugly superior to benighted Republicans who are so stuck in the past. They always were; look at Hayes!…

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They Call These Accomplishments? 3.19.12

2012-03-20 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

If you read through the Washington Monthly's list of Obama's top 50 accomplishments, you'll quickly understand why my brother, Rush, properly wanted him to fail. When Rush said he wanted Obama to fail, everyone knew he was talking about his policies, and for those few who pretended otherwise, he explained it a thousand times: He wanted his policies to fail because his policies are disastrous for America.…

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The Real Reason the NAACP Went to Geneva 3.19.12

2012-03-20 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the NAACP, has gone to the United Nations -- specifically the U.N. Human Rights Council -- for, in the words of USA Today, "help battling what the organization views as forces attempting to push back voting rights." Those "forces" are laws being passed by various states that require a photo ID for voting.…

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Is Liberalism Lazy and Immoral? 3.15.12

2012-03-16 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

The best advocates are often converts. So it is with Arthur C. Brooks, president of the American Enterprise Institute. Brooks has an important forthcoming book, "The Road to Freedom," which I'll discuss in a minute, but it's worth pausing over the unusual career of Brooks himself because it says much about happiness, free enterprise and the unique American spirit that Brooks has spent the last decade attempting to save. The son of two liberal college professors, Brooks writes that when he was growing up in Seattle, "No one in my world voted for Ronald Reagan. I had no friends or family who worked in business. I believed what most everybody in my world assumed to be true: that capitalism was a bit of a sham to benefit rich people, and the best way to get a better, fairer country was to raise taxes, increase government services, and redistribute more income." Brooks became a professional musician, playing the French horn with the Annapolis Brass Quintet and with the Barcelona City Orchestra. He also taught music. But a musical career didn't fulfill him. "I (had) what some considered the best job possible, yet was unhappy. ... My friends in the orchestra thrived on what they were doing. ... They spent their vacations at classical music conventions and heatedly discussed the most esoteric details of the lacquer on their instruments..." Like most Americans, Brooks wanted more from his career than a paycheck. He wanted to derive a deeper satisfaction. Because he had skipped college to "go pro," he began taking courses at night, eventually pocketing bachelor's, master's and doctorate degrees in social science.…

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Obama's Health Care Duplicity No Longer Debatable 3.15.12

2012-03-16 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

President Obama said, "The package we've put together" will "start bending the cost curve on health care" and "cut the deficit by a trillion dollars." Even a sympathetic Congressional Budget Office has finally put the nail in the coffin of that howler. At the time Obama made the claim, we all knew it was specious, and study after study came out showing just how fraudulent it was. There was the double counting on Medicare, the "Doc Fix" scam and a host of others. When Rep. Paul Ryan asked the CBO to rescore Obamacare with more accurate assumptions, it didn't quite make the grade -- by hundreds of billions of dollars, which, of course, are but rounding errors for the federal spending virtuoso in the White House. Many of us knew at the time that Obama's drive for socialized medicine had nothing to do with reducing spending -- the last thing that is ever on his mind. We knew that it wasn't about increasing access to care -- because socialized medicine schemes always ultimately reduce people's access to quality care. Looked at in a light most favorable to Obama's intentions, it was but another utopian scheme to put everyone on a level playing field. Looked at honestly and realistically, it was a Trojan horse to expand government control over our private lives that would result in less, worse and more expensive care. No one who has watched Obama and the titanic leftist juggernaut he has unleashed on our beloved America thought he was promoting Obamacare to bend the health care curve down. If that had been the case, he wouldn't have had to go to such lengths to make it appear as though this budget buster was actually a plan for cost containment. Indeed, we knew he would go to any lengths to pass this bill, even if it ended up costing two or three times more than he falsely projected. And what do you know? Just a few years later, as this legislative Frankenstein awaits the verdict of the Supreme Court, the CBO released a report this week admitting it will cost about twice as much as Obama twisted its arm into calculating a few years ago.…

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The Myth of "Middle-Class" Uncle Joe 3.15.12

2012-03-16 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

This has got to be the bazooka of all Joe Biden blowhardisms. The nation's vice campaigner in chief went on the attack against Republicans this week, clad in full populist armor. "These guys don't have a sense of the average folks out there," said The Everyman. "They don't know what it means to be middle class." But who was his audience? Nope, not blue-collar workers in Allentown, Pa. Biden was speaking to an exclusive club of $10,000-per-couple campaign donors gathered at the home of the Senate's $200 million man, Democratic Mass. Sen. John Kerry, in Georgetown, D.C. That's smack dab in the middle of Beltway America, where they like a twist of cognitive dissonance with their aperitifs. The White House is once again drawing on the fantastical myth of middle-class Joe to portray Republicans as out-of-touch elitists. A Washington Post headline described Biden "digging back into his roots to move Obama forward." But the administration's leading populist poster child is a wretched symbol of entrenched Washington power. And his fables are getting oldy-moldy. At another campaign event in Ohio, Regular Joe rolled up his sleeves and pumped out the common-man colloquialisms. "It's good to have a dad in the automobile business, man," he said. Yeah, man. Preach it, man. Oh, hey, weren't you the man who savaged average-guy Joe "the Plumber" Wurzelbacher in Ohio four years ago by lying about his income and mocking his American dream to own a small business? Man.…

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If I Had a Rich Man: Wealthy Super PAC Donors Make Politics More Competitive 3.13.12

2012-03-13 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

In the two weeks before this month's Super Tuesday primaries, The Wall Street Journal reports, "outside political action committees supporting the Republican presidential hopefuls spent three times as much as the candidates themselves." Rep. David Price, D-N.C., says the "undue influence" of these so-called super PACs, which can collect and spend as much as they want as long as they do not coordinate with candidates, "strikes at the heart of our democracy."…

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Economy Actually Lost 2.7 Million Jobs in January 3.13.12

2012-03-13 :: Dick Morris
Length: 5s

Obama's entire claim that the economy is reviving is based on phony numbers and rigged statistics. Nothing is more misleading than the recent administration claim that the economy added over 200,000 jobs during each of the past three months and that unemployment is stable at 8.3 percent. Dr. John Hussman of the Hussman Fund says that the claims of job gains are based entirely on weighted figures. "Total non-farm employment in the U.S., before seasonal adjustments, fell by 2,689,000 jobs in January." Then the spin doctors at the Bureau of Labor Statistics went to work. Hussman explains: "because its typical for the economy to lose a large number of jobs after the holidays, largely in retail trade, construction and manufacturing, the BLS estimated that the 'normal' seasonal decline in employment should have been 2,932,000 jobs in January. The difference between the two numbers ... was 243,000 jobs, which was reported as an increase in employment."…

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What's the Matter with Soledad O'Brien? 3.13.12

2012-03-13 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

CNN's Soledad O'Brien isn't used to criticism. In the world of media elites, she's a beloved figure and an award-winning news anchor. But last week, she revealed her true, decidedly non-neutral colors. And she's not happy about the hoi polloi questioning her hallowed journalistic objectivity. On Thursday, O'Brien interviewed Joel Pollak, editor-in-chief of the late Andrew Breitbart's online empire. Breitbart's BigGovernment.com released a 1991 video of Barack Obama (then a 30-year-old law student) at a Harvard rally embracing radical racialist Derrick Bell and his push for more aggressive race-based hiring at Harvard. Bell is a proponent of critical race theory (CRT), which posits that America remains a hopelessly racist country dominated by Jews and white supremacists.…

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Who Is Happy? 3.12.12

2012-03-12 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

After 25 years of lecturing on happiness, writing a book on the subject ("Happiness Is a Serious Problem") and devoting an hour of my radio show every week for the last 13 years to happiness, here are some conclusions about who is happy. (SET ITAL) People who control themselves. (END ITAL) Happiness is dependent on self-discipline. We are the biggest obstacles to our own happiness. It is much easier to do battle with society and with others than to fight our own nature. (SET ITAL) People who are given little and earn what they have. (END ITAL) That is why lottery winners are rarely happier than those who have far less money -- they didn't earn their newfound wealth. And they are often less happy after their win than they were before it.…

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Compliant Americans 3.12.12

2012-03-12 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

Last month, at a Raeford, N.C., elementary school, a teacher confiscated the lunch of a 5-year-old girl because it didn't meet U.S. Department of Agriculture guidelines and therefore was deemed nonnutritious. She replaced it with school cafeteria chicken nuggets. The girl's home-prepared lunch was nutritious; it consisted of a turkey and cheese sandwich, potato chips, a banana and apple juice. But whether her lunch was nutritious or not is not the issue. The issue is governmental usurpation of parental authority. In a number of states, pregnant teenage girls may be given abortions without the notification or the permission of parents. The issue is neither abortion nor whether a pregnant teenager should have an abortion. The issue is this: What gives the government the authority to usurp parental authority?…

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The Big Hoax 3.12.12

2012-03-12 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

There have been many frauds of historic proportions -- for example, the financial pyramid scheme for which Charles Ponzi was sent to prison in the 1920s, and for which Franklin D. Roosevelt was praised in the 1930s, when he called it Social Security. In our own times, Bernie Madoff's hoax has made headlines. But the biggest hoax of the past two generations is still going strong -- namely, the hoax that statistical differences in outcomes for different groups are due to the way other people treat those groups.…

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Obama's Covert Plan To Raise Gas Prices 3.12.12

2012-03-12 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

President Barack Obama's energy plan involves radically increasing gas prices to the European rate of about $10 a gallon. And he's well on his way, as gas prices have more than doubled since he took office in January 2009, when gasoline was only $1.79 per gallon. And he's scheming to double prices again in his second term, with you footing the bill. It's no secret that we're being gouged at the pumps. The reason for soaring gas prices? According to Obama, it's not because of anything he has done -- not his devaluing the dollar via his disastrous economic decisions, his closing federal lands for oil production opened by his predecessor, his passing cap-and-trade legislation in the middle of the worst economy since the Great Depression or his refusing to stand strong against the regime in Iran, which controls 20 percent of the world's oil supply via the Strait of Hormuz.…

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Thanks President Obama, but I Need More 3.12.12

2012-03-12 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Dear President Obama, As a certifiable member of the female sex, I want to thank you for preventing the Republican Party from conducting a "war on women." Some cynics might say that you were worried about women's declining support for Democrats. While 56 percent of women voted Democrat in 2008, only 48 percent did so in 2010. And while the percentage of women with a favorable view of your leadership has been climbing back up recently (women seem more willing than men to give you credit for improving economic numbers), you need a really lopsided proportion of the women's vote to compensate for your weakness among men. A February Quinnipiac poll, for example, found that white men disapproved of the way you are handling your job by a two to one margin.…

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On Iran and Entitlements, Obama Kicks the Can Down the Road 3.7.12

2012-03-08 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

Kicking the can down the road. That's been the Obama administration's response on issues from Iran's nuclear weapons program to America's entitlement systems. Start with Iran. In a statement in the Oval Office before his meeting with President Obama on Monday, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu noted that Obama had "reiterated yesterday" the principle that "when it comes to Israel's security, Israel has the right, the sovereign right, to make its own decisions." That evening, speaking to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, Netanyahu said: "Israel has waited patiently for the international community to resolve this issue. We've waited for diplomacy to work. We've waited for sanctions to work. None of us can afford to wait much longer. "As Prime Minister of Israel, I will never let my people live in the shadow of annihilation." In response to Netanyahu and in his own speech to AIPAC, Obama declared that the United States would not allow Iran to obtain a nuclear weapon. He explicitly ruled out a policy of "containment." But there clearly is a difference between the two leaders. Obama has been talking about preventing Iran from getting a nuclear weapon. Netanyahu has been talking about preventing Iran from getting a nuclear weapons capability. I draw the conclusion that Netanyahu will very soon order an Israeli attack on Iran's nuclear weapons facilities. Meanwhile, Obama is kicking the can down the road, announcing Tuesday that the United States will participate in further negotiations with Iran.…

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'Outrage' Over Limbaugh -- What About Left-wing Misogyny? 3.7.12

2012-03-08 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

"A firestorm of outrage from women after a crude tirade from Rush Limbaugh," said NBC anchor Brian Williams. This was followed by a reporter who said: "In 2012, the personal is political. What began as a debate over religious freedom has devolved into what some call a 'war on women.'" The "outrage" over Rush Limbaugh's "misogyny" provides the latest examples of the liberal vs. conservative double standard and the selective indignation of the left. Limbaugh criticized the congressional appearance of Sandra Fluke, a Georgetown law student who supported requiring even religiously affiliated institutions to provide "free" contraceptives. "So, Ms. Fluke, and the rest of you femi-Nazis," Limbaugh said, "here's the deal: If we are going to pay for your contraceptives and, thus, pay for you to have sex, we want something for it. And I'll tell you what it is. We want you to post the videos online so we can all watch." Limbaugh also called her a woman who admits she gets "paid" for sex -- something that, according to Limbaugh, makes her a "slut" and a "prostitute." He apologized, but reportedly has lost sponsors. Fluke refused to accept his apology. "I don't think that a statement like this issued, saying that his choice of words was not the best, changes anything," Fluke said. "And especially when that statement is issued when he's under significant pressure from his sponsors who have begun to pull their support." The "firestorm" over Limbaugh's "sexism" would be convincing -- were it not for its selective nature. Where's the outrage when the misogyny comes from the left?…

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After Super Tuesday... 3.6.12

2012-03-06 :: Dick Morris
Length: 5s

This column is being written on Super Tuesday. We -- as of yet -- do not know the outcome of the 10-state matchup, but let's assume that Mitt Romney wins the bulk of the caucuses and primaries. Give Newt Gingrich Georgia. Give Rick Santorum Oklahoma and Tennessee. Assume they split Ohio. Since it's proportional representation, it doesn't really matter -- in delegates -- who narrowly wins. Then give Romney Massachusetts, Virginia, Vermont, North Dakota, Idaho and Alaska. He already won Washington state on Saturday. If the final lineup is slightly different, it's not that important. So as of Wednesday morning, when this column will appear, 34 percent of the delegates will have been allocated. In some states, the caucuses have been held but the delegates themselves not yet chosen, but we know how much each candidate will win. At this point, Romney has close to half of the delegates. Santorum and Gingrich should have about 22 percent each, and Ron Paul should have about 9 percent.…

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Sandra Fluke's Protection Racket 3.6.12

2012-03-06 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

On his radio show last Friday, Rush Limbaugh complained that Democrats try to "impugn and discredit the people who disagree with them." That was two days after Limbaugh called Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke a "slut" and a "prostitute" because she disagreed with him about the Obama administration's regulation requiring employers to provide health care plans that cover contraception. By Saturday, facing criticism from fellow Republicans and desertions by advertisers, Limbaugh was apologizing to Fluke for his "insulting word choices," implausibly claiming he "did not mean a personal attack." Whatever his intentions, Limbaugh's sexist tirade reinforced a narrative that depicts resistance to the contraceptive mandate as part of "a systematic war against women," as Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., put it last week. But that narrative remains false, no matter how many stupid jokes Rush Limbaugh makes.…

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The War on Conservative Women 3.6.12

2012-03-06 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

I'm sorry Rush Limbaugh called 30-year-old Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke a "slut." She's really just another professional femme-a-gogue helping to manufacture a false narrative about the GOP "war on women." I'm sorry the civility police now have an opening to demonize the entire right based on one radio comment -- because it's the progressive left in this country that has viciously and systematically slimed female conservatives for their beliefs. We have the well-worn battle scars to prove it. And no, we don't need coddling phone calls from the pandering president of the United States to convince us to stand up and fight.…

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It Just Ain't So 3.5.12

2012-03-05 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

The U.S. Census Bureau reports that 2011 manufacturing output grew by 11 percent, to nearly $5 trillion. Were our manufacturing sector considered a nation with its own gross domestic product, it would be the world's fourth-richest economy. Manufacturing productivity has doubled since 1987, and manufacturing output has risen by one-half. However, over the past two decades, manufacturing employment has fallen about 25 percent. For some people, that means our manufacturing sector is sick. By that criterion, our agriculture sector shares that "sickness," only worse and for a longer duration. In 1790, 90 percent of Americans did agricultural work. Agriculture is now in "shambles" because only 2 percent of Americans have farm jobs. In 1970, the telecommunications industry employed 421,000 well-paid switchboard operators. Today "disaster" has hit the telecommunications industry, because there are fewer than 20,000 operators. That's a 95 percent job loss. The spectacular advances that have raised productivity in the telecommunications industry have made it possible for fewer operators to handle tens of billions of calls at a tiny fraction of the 1970 cost.…

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James Q. Wilson (1931-2012) 3.5.12

2012-03-05 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

There are undoubtedly many people who are alive today because of James Q. Wilson, who died last week. He was not a doctor or medical scientist, nor was he a fireman or coast guardsman who rescued people from immediate dangers. James Q. Wilson was a scholar who studied crime. He saved lives because his penetrating analyses of crime, and the effect of the criminal law, debunked the theories of other intellectuals, which had led judges and legislators to ease up on criminals -- leading in turn to skyrocketing rates of crime, including murder.…

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Get Off Your Gas! Drill and Vote (Part 1) 3.5.12

2012-03-05 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

Since Jan. 1, the price of gas has soared 45 cents a gallon -- the highest on record for this time of year. AAA reported this past week that the national average of unleaded gasoline climbed from Feb. 28's $3.71 per gallon to March 2's $3.73 per gallon and then up again to $3.76 per gallon over the weekend -- the 25th straight increase in the past month. According to The Associated Press, the nationwide price of gas is expected to reach $4.25 by the end of April. But in many cities across the nation, people don't have to wait for April showers to bring May's misfortunes.…

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Genius for Subject Changing 3.5.12

2012-03-05 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

The Obama administration issues an edict regarding birth control that is 1) blatantly unconstitutional, 2) economically absurd, and 3) completely unmatched to any national need. What are they talking about? The "Republican war on women." Democrats are geniuses at muddying the waters and twisting the debate in a direction they find congenial. They've been at this a very long time. Recall that in the late 1980s and early 1990s, we found ourselves ensnared in a discussion of so-called "censorship." The National Endowment for the Arts (a luxury no deeply indebted nation should indulge) had provided grants to two particularly obnoxious exhibits. One was a photograph by Andres Serrano called "Piss Christ" that depicted a crucifix submerged in a jar of the artist's urine. The other was a series of homoerotic photographs by Robert Mapplethorpe, featuring, to cite just one example, a man's anus being penetrated by a bullwhip.…

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Rush: At the Tip of Liberty's Spear 3.5.12

2012-03-05 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

If you'll indulge me, I need to express this beyond my Twitter posts: I am proud of my brother, Rush, for his multiple sincere apologies to Sandra Fluke. I am not even slightly surprised that so many on the left refuse to accept his apology. I think this entire incident is instructive. Rush is heartsick over the direction this country is going and that we arrived at a place where many people don't even bat an eye over the alarming development that our government is mandating insurance coverage -- and forcing employers to pay for it even when they object on moral grounds.…

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Many Muslims Are Making Many Atheists 3.5.12

2012-03-05 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

Here in Sydney, Australia, where I've been lecturing for a week, I may have had one Australian-born waitress or waiter and one Australian-born taxi driver. As is my wont, I ask all of them where they were born and, whenever possible, have some discussion about their native country. I say "whenever possible" because, unlike in the United States --where taxi drivers, whether foreign- or American-born, are known for being talkative -- that has not been my experience in Sydney, where apparently the influence of the famous British reserve is still very much in evidence. I ask where the driver was born, he responds, and the discussion is pretty much ended.…

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Obama's Campaign Bully Brigade Rides Again 3.1.12

2012-03-02 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

They're baaaaaaack. Barack Obama's election-year goon squad kicked into high gear this week by kicking the president's fiercest opponents in the teeth and targeting their pocketbooks. Returning to bully business as usual, the Obama campaign launched a brazen salvo against two prominent conservative critics and their legions of private citizen donors. Let's be clear (to use Obama's favorite phrase): This is not just the politics of personal destruction. It's a vendetta of campaign finance destruction. Under the guise of "disclosure," Team Obama is exploiting the power of high government office to intimidate lawful, peaceful contributors who support limited-government causes. In a scathing fundraising e-mail appeal, Obama campaign manager Jim Messina name-checked wealthy free-market philanthropists Charles and David Koch -- along with a growing movement of grassroots conservatives who have freely, voluntarily and legally given money to the Koch-founded nonprofit activist group Americans for Prosperity and its sister foundation. As a speaker at several AFP events over the past three years, I've met thousands of like-minded, hardworking Americans who support their work at the local, state and federal levels.…

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Who's the True Conservative? 3.1.12

2012-03-02 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

The theme for this year's primary season was set back in May 2011. Recall that the Republican-dominated House of Representatives had just done something that cynics said would not and could not be done. They voted for a budget -- the Ryan budget -- that actually began to tackle the problem of limitless entitlement spending. The cliche about entitlements (the "third rail") had been largely true. Neither Republicans nor Democrats had shown the courage to tell middle-class voters that Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security would have to change. But on April 15, all but four Republicans (and zero Democrats) voted for a budget that would block grant Medicaid to the states and gradually transform Medicare from the whale-shark entitlement that threatens to swallow all other federal spending into a premium support program. Naturally, the Republicans got no credit for this principled vote from the usual suspects (the press, the liberal commentators, the professors). But you'd think fellow Republicans and conservatives would offer at least a clap on the back. Nope. Just a few weeks later, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, appearing on MSNBC's "Meet the Press," labeled the Ryan budget "too radical" and "right-wing social engineering," which Gingrich explained that he opposed as much as "left-wing social engineering." As Rep. Paul Ryan said at the time, "With allies like that, who needs the left?"…

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The Left, Not Social Conservatives, Threatens Religious Liberty 3.1.12

2012-03-02 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

Now hear this: No Republicans on the national political scene, including Rick Santorum, threaten our religious liberty. Many Democrats, including President Obama and Senate Democrats, do. And they've struck again with the Senate's defeat of the Blunt amendment. President Obama, who seems to spend as much time community organizing as he does attending to his executive duties, doubtlessly conspired with his crack opposition research trolls and the liberal media to shoehorn the contraception issue into the 2012 presidential campaign. What do I mean about Obama's spending time community organizing? Well, he is using the office of the presidency to intimidate the Koch brothers into disclosing their donors' names. He and his minions falsely, with malice aforethought, accused the U.S. Chamber of Commerce of receiving foreign contributions, with no evidence, and when challenged to substantiate it, they taunted that it was up to the chamber and its defenders to prove a negative. Obama's Justice Department has taxpayer-funded employees posing as ordinary American citizens and posting pro-Obama agenda comments on various websites. His Justice Department attacks Republicans genuinely attempting to monitor actual voter fraud and protects his friends who engage in real-life voter intimidation. I could go on.…

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Why Liberals Like Taxing the Wealthy 2.29.12

2012-03-01 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

I have long been puzzled by the enthusiasm with which many young liberal bloggers cheer on proposals to raise tax rates on high earners. I can understand why they might favor them, but not why they seem to invest so much psychic energy in the issue. Some of this may just be team ball: You cheer when your side puts up numbers on the scoreboard. So Democratic cheerleaders are rah-rahing what they insist on calling repeal of the Bush tax cuts (which have been in effect now longer than the Clinton tax increases they rolled back). But the liberal bloggers cannot be entirely ignorant of the knowledge that we have a pretty progressive income tax already. In 2009, the top 1 percent of earners reported 17 percent of adjusted gross income and paid 37 percent of total income tax revenues. By some measures, the American tax system, including the payroll tax and state and local taxes, is more progressive -- in the sense of extracting disproportionate shares of revenue from high earners -- than most European tax regimes, which rely heaving on value-added taxes. Plus, as liberal economist Lane Kenworthy points out, you don't get much income redistribution from higher tax rates. You get more from transfer payments. But, as House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan has documented, federal transfers are getting less progressive. Social Security and Medicare increasingly transfer money from young low earners to old people with relatively high incomes and considerable accumulated wealth.…

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Burned in Afghanistan 2.29.12

2012-03-01 :: Steve Chapman
Length: 5s

Afghans are rioting, American soldiers are regularly murdered by their allies, the Taliban are hanging in, and civilian casualties in Afghanistan set a record last year. But a Pentagon spokesman assures us that "the fundamentals of our strategy remain sound." He had to tell us because we wouldn't know it otherwise. In almost every respect, our venture in Afghanistan looks like a dismal, irredeemable failure. Year after year, we've been told that things are getting better. But lately, it's hard to take that claim seriously. When Afghans erupted in rage over the careless burning of Korans at Bagram Airbase, the upheaval was not just about Muslim holy books. It was also about the grossly dysfunctional relationship between us and them -- a product of the huge cultural gulf, our outsized ambitions and the irritant of our presence. Afghanistan is a medieval country that we can barely begin to understand. Yet we presume that with all our money, technology, weaponry and wisdom, we can mold it like soft clay.…

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'Super Tuesday' 2.29.12

2012-03-01 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

Many people are looking to the many primary elections on March 6th -- "Super Tuesday" -- to clarify where this year's Republican nomination campaign is headed. It may clarify far more than that, including the future of this nation and of Western civilization. If a clear winner with a commanding lead emerges, the question then becomes whether that candidate is someone who is likely to defeat Barack Obama. If not, then the fate of America -- and of Western nations, including Israel -- will be left in the hands of a man with a lifelong hostility to Western values and Western interests. President Obama is such a genial man that many people, across the ideological space, cannot see him as a danger. For every hundred people who can see his geniality, probably only a handful see the grave danger his warped policies and ruthless tactics pose to a whole way of life that has given generation after generation of Americans unprecedented freedom and prosperity. The election next November will not be just another election, and the stakes add up to far more than the sum of the individual issues. Moreover, if reelected and facing no future election, whatever political constraints may have limited how far Obama would push his radical agenda will be gone.…

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The Spy Who Hated Me 2.28.12

2012-02-29 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

The day Tyler Clementi discovered that his roommate at Rutgers University had used a webcam to spy on him as he kissed another man, he described the incident to a friend during an instant-message chat. "It could be interpreted as a hate crime," the friend suggested, according to a recent New Yorker article by Ian Parker. Clementi's reply: "hahaha a hate crime lol." That risible possibility has become a reality because Clementi, an 18-year-old freshman, jumped off the George Washington Bridge two days later for reasons that remain unclear. The New Jersey trial of Clementi's roommate, Dharun Ravi, illustrates the dangers posed by hate crime statutes, which enhance the penalties for existing offenses based on bigoted motives and therefore punish people for their opinions.…

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Oil Goes up; Obama Goes Down 2.28.12

2012-02-29 :: Dick Morris
Length: 5s

I hate to quote the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, but the chickens have come home to roost for President Barack Obama as higher oil and gasoline prices swamp his re-election bid. Count the chickens: Obama has refused to impose tough sanctions on Iran until two months ago, increasing the likelihood of an Israeli attack. Already speculation that such a strike might be in the offing is driving up oil prices.…

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The Autoworkers Obama Left Behind 2.28.12

2012-02-29 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

The White House fairy tale about the Happily Ever After Auto Bailout is missing a crucial, bloody page. While President Obama bragged about "standing by American workers" at a rowdy United Auto Workers meeting Tuesday, he failed to acknowledge how the Chicago-style deal threw tens of thousands of nonunion autoworkers under the bus. In a campaign pep rally/sermon billed as a "policy speech," Obama nearly broke his arm patting himself on the back for placing his "bets" (read: our money) on the $85 billion federal auto industry rescue. "Three years later," he crowed, "that bet is paying off for America." Big Labor brass cheered Obama's citation of GM's "highest profits in its 100-year history" as the room filled with militant UAW chants of "union made."…

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Obama's Union Speech a 'Load of You-Know-What' 2.28.12

2012-02-29 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

False choices. Populist bromides. A lecture on values. President Barack Obama treated us to some of his greatest hits this week. Speaking before the United Auto Workers union in Washington, Obama, champion of the working man, challenged auto bailout "naysayers" to "come around" and admit that "standing by American workers was the right thing to do," as bailouts "saved" the auto industry. (You have to wonder whether downtrodden citizens appreciate just how close they came to having to roller-skate to work.)…

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Equality or Inequality 2.27.12

2012-02-27 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

Rick Santorum's speech at the Detroit Economic Club stirred a bit of controversy when he said: "I'm not about equality of result when it comes to income inequality. There is income inequality in America. There always has been, and hopefully -- and I do say that -- there always will be." That kind of statement, though having merit, should not be made to people who have little or no understanding. Let's look at inequality. Kay S. Hymowitz's article "Why the Gender Gap Won't Go Away. Ever," in City Journal (Summer 2011), shows that female doctors earn only 64 percent of the income that male doctors earn. What should be done about that? It turns out that only 16 percent of surgeons are women but 50 percent of pediatricians are women. Even though surgeons have many more years of education and training than do pediatricians, should Congress equalize their salaries or make pediatricians become surgeons?…

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For Whom Would America's Founders Vote for President? 2.27.12

2012-02-27 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

When New York churches no longer can meet in public school settings, a federal court orders a Rhode Island public school to remove a prayer banner that has been posted for more than five decades (and it complies), the federal government mandates that Catholic institutions cover abortion-inducing drugs, contraceptives and sterilization (at no cost to the patient), the U.S. Air Force removes "God" from the motto of the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office, atheists continue to contest "under God" in our Pledge of Allegiance, town councils can't pray to start their meetings, evangelical pillars like Franklin Graham are subdued by gotcha gangs in the mainstream media, and cultural icons like Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow can't even bow in silent prayer without criticism, you can be assured that religious liberty is under assault by secular progressives across America. And leading the national charge is none other than our president, Barack Obama. Though America's Founding Fathers opposed the reign of kings or priests, they actually advocated the role of religion in society and civic service, including intermingling their own Christian faith in political convictions and choices. And I believe they would want us to vote in a president who is committed to the same.…

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Assad's Useful Idiots 2.27.12

2012-02-27 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton issued a firm statement to the Syrian elite this week, urging them to overthrow the regime of Bashar al-Assad. "The longer you support the regime's campaign of violence against your brothers and sisters, the more it will stain your honor," she advised. Only now? Only after thousands of men, women and children have been murdered, tens of thousands wounded, and countless homes destroyed by artillery shells has the Obama team finally shed its illusions about the Syrian regime?…

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Christian Conservatives Guard Religious Liberty 2.27.12

2012-02-27 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

The First Amendment to the United States Constitution contains two clauses addressing religious liberty: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." It's a shame that in their modern misguided zeal to read the first clause as mandating a complete separation of church and state, liberals do great damage to the second clause and defeat the overarching purpose of both: ensuring religious liberty.…

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Pettiness and Mud 2.27.12

2012-02-27 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

The only good news for the Republicans coming out of the seemingly endless presidential candidate "debates" is that some Republican leaders are now belatedly thinking about how they can avoid a repetition of this debacle in future elections. What could they possibly have been thinking about, in the first place, when they agreed to a format based on short sound bites for dealing with major complex issues, and with media journalists -- 90 percent of them Democrats -- picking the topics?…

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Barack 'All of the Above' Obama 2.23.12

2012-02-24 :: Lawrence Kudlow
Length: 5s

President Obama fought back against rising oil and retail gas prices in a speech in Florida on Thursday. But it was a curious speech. He started out by mocking Republicans, stating that GOP candidates are licking their chops as gasoline prices rocket up. He said, "They are already dusting off their three-point plans for $2 gas. I'll save you the suspense: Step one is drill, step two is drill, and step three is keep drilling." Very clever. It's kind of what Newt Gingrich said in this week's Arizona debate. But here's the curious part. Obama said, "If we're going to take control of our energy future, if we're going to avoid these gas-price spikes down the line, then we need a sustained all-of-the-above strategy that develops every available source of American energy -- oil, gas, wind, solar, nuclear, biofuels and more."…

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Lighten Up on Political Correctness 2.23.12

2012-02-24 :: Linda Chavez
Length: 5s

Have we become so hypersensitive that a phrase in use for half a millennia must now be banished from the English lexicon? I'm speaking, of course, of the furor created last week when ESPN's mobile site ran a story headlined "A Chink in the Armor." The idiom is commonly used to describe the vulnerability in an otherwise impenetrable defense. Its etymology goes back to the Middle Ages, when knights in battle wore suits of armor that covered their bodies head to foot. Opponents looked for small openings -- chinks -- through which they might thrust their swords or other weapons.…

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Now We Know Why Not Santorum 2.23.12

2012-02-24 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Wish I had a nickel for every conservative who confidently predicted that the Arizona debate would, of course, feature obnoxious questions about birth control and the devil aimed at Rick Santorum. As it turned out, CNN's John King did not ask "gotcha" questions and for the most part, conducted a fair and informative debate. The exception, and this may not have been King's fault, was CNN's absurd reality-show-style introductions of the candidates: "Newt Gingrich, the determined challenger," "Mitt Romney, the long-distance runner." Hmm. How about "CNN, the desperate, ratings-starved network"? Memo to file: John King isn't one of the bad guys. He's pretty straight. Maybe FoxNews should offer him a job? Consider all of the reasonable people Fox has attracted from other networks: Brit Hume from ABC, Jim Angle from NPR, Chris Wallace from ABC, John Roberts from CNN, Doug McKelway from ABC. Truth is, there are still some nonliberals even in the unlikeliest places, such as the major networks.…

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Giving With One Hand and Taking With the Other 2.23.12

2012-02-24 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

So we should all be grateful that President Obama is just now coming out for a corporate tax rate cut? But does anyone really believe he's had a supply-side epiphany? That this is an election year surely wouldn't have anything to do with his apparent change of heart, would it? He's been president for more than three years, and Republicans have been clamoring all that time for a reduction in the world's second-highest corporate tax rate. So don't you think that if Obama truly favored this, it would have happened long ago? But there's something more cynical about Obama's new proposal. It wouldn't operate as advertised. As we get closer to the 2012 general election campaign, Obama wants to be positioned to compete with the eventual nominee on this issue. Newt would cut the current 35 percent rate to 12.5 percent. Romney would reduce it to 25 percent. And Santorum would reduce it to 17.5 percent for all corporations except domestic manufacturers, which would be exempted from the tax. Obama calls for a modest reduction, to 28 percent, which would still be reason to cheer coming from him, but it's not quite that simple. Underneath the smoke and to the side of the mirrors, we find it's just another ploy to empower Obama to pick the winners and losers.…

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The $4 Billion Obamacare Slush Fund for Progressives 2.23.12

2012-02-24 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

If you like how the Obama administration's multibillion-dollar "investments" in bankrupt solar companies have turned out, you'll love the latest federal loan program to nowhere. It's the Obamacare loyalty rewards program for progressives. To appease liberal Democrats pushing for the so-called "public option" (the full frontal government takeover of our health care system), the White House settled for the creation of a $6 billion network of nonprofit "CO-OPs" that will "compete" with private insurers. It's socialized medicine through the side door. House Republicans sliced about $2 billion from the slush fund in last spring's budget deal and proclaimed the program dead. Hardly. On Wednesday, the White House trumpeted the release of nearly $700 million in taxpayer-funded low-interest loans for seven CO-OPs in eight states. Administered by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the fund will pour more money into CO-OP plans nationwide throughout the next year. In 2014, according to Washington bureaucrats, the plans will be offered on the federally approved and federally monitored state health exchange "marketplace." Some marketplace. Given how Team Obama has dispensed special Obamacare waivers to scores of campaign donors, it's a sure bet the CO-OP/exchange mechanism will be brazenly rigged against non-subsidized, for-profit insurers. And against taxpayers. Obama health officials assure us that there will be an "early warning system" in place before loan recipients get into financial trouble. But we know from the half-billion-dollar Solyndra scam that when this administration sees red flags, it's full speed ahead.…

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Aren't High Gas Prices What Democrats Want? 2.21.12

2012-02-22 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

Gas prices are spiking. That's great news, right? We have to wean ourselves off the stuff. At least that's what we've been hearing for years. Oil is dirty. We import it from nations that hate our guts (like Canada!). And moreover, we're running out. Oil is "finite." Finite much in the way water is finite. So why aren't Democrats making the case that the spike in prices is a good thing? Isn't this basically our energy policy these days? How we "win the future"? If high energy prices were to damage President Barack Obama's re-election prospects, it would be ironic, considering the left has been telling us to set aside our "dependency" -- or, as our most recent Republican president put it, "addiction" -- for a long time.…

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The High Priests of Eco-Destruction 2.21.12

2012-02-22 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

Rick Santorum is right. Pushing back against Democrats' attempts to frame him as a religious menace, the GOP presidential candidate forcefully turned the tables on the White House: "When it comes to the management of the Earth, they are the anti-science ones." Scrutiny of the White House anti-science brigade couldn't come at a better time (which is why Santorum's detractors prefer to froth at the mouth about comments he made four years ago on the existence of Satan). It's not just big-ticket scandals like the stimulus-subsidized Solyndra bankruptcy or the Keystone pipeline debacle bedeviling America. In every corner of the Obama administration, the radical green machinery is hard at work -- destroying jobs, shredding truth and sacrificing our economic well-being at the altar of environmentalism.…

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If Santorum Wins ... 2.21.12

2012-02-21 :: Dick Morris
Length: 5s

What would the race for president look like should Rick Santorum win the Republican nomination? His candidacy would do a lot to put social issues into play. While he would rev up the base of social conservatives who might be left cold by a Mitt Romney candidacy, President Barack Obama would welcome the distraction from his economic record. He would likely try to bring into the dialogue fringe issues such as contraception, back-alley abortions, stem cell research and others. His insistence on the inclusion of birth control in health insurance policies issued by Catholic institutions is a foretaste of his probable tactics against Santorum, should he win the Republican nomination.…

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Contraceptive Failure 2.21.12

2012-02-21 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

A month ago, the Obama administration said religious organizations will have to pay for health insurance policies that cover contraception and sterilization, even if they consider those practices immoral. Two weeks ago, responding to widespread complaints that its edict violated freedom of conscience, the administration unveiled a "new policy," under which religious organizations will have to pay for health insurance policies that cover contraception and sterilization, even if they consider those practices immoral.…

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Obama's Fiscal Fakery: How Can You Pay Down the National Debt by Building It Up? 2.14.12

2012-02-20 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

Decrying "a decade of deficits" on Monday, President Obama declared that "my budget lays out a path for how we can pay down these debts." It is hard to see how that can be true, since his plan would add $6.7 trillion to the national debt during the next decade. Obama thus begins his fourth year in office the way he began his first, preaching prudence while practicing profligacy. Back then, you may recall, he promised to cut the deficit, at that point estimated to be $1.3 trillion, "at least in half by the end of his first term," as a spokesman for the Office of Management and Budget put it in February 2009.…

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A Tea Party Senate Takeover 2.14.12

2012-02-20 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

The tea party isn't dead. It's just looking down ballot. While fiscal conservatives remain split over the GOP presidential candidates, grassroots activists are coalescing around a stellar slate of limited-government candidates looking to reinforce and reenergize the right in Washington. And in the spirit of the modern-day tea party movement, no entrenched incumbent -- Democrat or Republican -- is safe.…

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Commerce Is the Culture War 2.14.12

2012-02-20 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

It's always curious to watch the champions of "choice" decide what choices to champion and what choices to dismiss for the common good. If you believe that the Obama administration's decision to force Catholic institutions to pay for and offer (directly or indirectly) products the church finds morally objectionable is an assault on religious freedom and free speech, you probably also realize the importance of consumer choice. After all, when government dictates what people buy and sell, it dictates much more.…

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Chris Christie on Israel -- and What It Means to Be a Leader 2.13.12

2012-02-20 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie addressed the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) last week. In the few words reported by the Weekly Standard magazine, he said just about everything one needs to know about Israel; about America and Israel; and about American political leadership: "America should stand by its friends and its democratic allies, even, and sometimes especially, when it's unpopular to do so."…

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The Free Lunch Is Back 2.13.12

2012-02-20 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Leaving aside the blatant assault on religious liberty that the Obama administration's contraceptive mandate represents (a number of commentators have ably elucidated the assault on free exercise), the edict ought to offend all sensible Americans for its sheer economic and moral fatuousness. In this case, "moral" refers to moral hazard, i.e., unintentionally encouraging bad behavior. But first, consider the economic argument the administration has advanced for forcing insurance companies to offer free contraceptives and abortifacients to all women.…

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President Magoo Needs No Delphic Oracle 2.13.12

2012-02-20 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

President Obama is nothing if not an incorrigible spendaholic, as his new budget reconfirms in spades. While the nation drowns in debt, Obama wants to buy new expensive Tinkertoys to indulge his utopian fantasies. Legend has it that prior to embarking on his mission to conquer the known world, Alexander the Great, who had not yet established his greatness, visited the oracle at Delphi seeking a good omen. The oracle was actually a priestess who sat on a stool in the crypt of Apollo's Temple above a fissure in the earth that emitted vapors and put her into a trance, wherein she would channel messages from Apollo.…

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The 'Progressive' Legacy 2.13.12

2012-02-20 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

Although Barack Obama is the first black President of the United States, he is by no means unique, except for his complexion. He follows in the footsteps of other presidents with a similar vision, the vision at the heart of the Progressive movement that flourished a hundred years ago. Many of the trends, problems and disasters of our time are a legacy of that era. We can only imagine how many future generations will be paying the price -- and not just in money -- for the bright ideas and clever rhetoric of our current administration.…

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Why I Chose Newt Over Santorum 2.13.12

2012-02-20 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

In 2008 -- when my wife, Gena, and I were on the campaign trail backing former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee for president -- former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania was fighting to get former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney elected. (Go to http://bit.ly/zEIaPw to hear how Santorum passionately endorsed and elevated Mitt in his bid for the Oval Office.) Just three years ago, in his interview with radio host and conservative commentator Laura Ingraham, Santorum also emphatically told millions of listening Americans, "If you're a conservative ... if you're a Republican ... there is only one place to go right now, and that's Mitt Romney."…

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Rising Black Social Pathology 2.13.12

2012-02-20 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

The Philadelphia Inquirer's big story Feb. 4 was about how a budget crunch at the Philadelphia School District had caused the district to lay off 91 school police officers. Over the years, there's been no discussion of what has happened to our youth that makes a school police force necessary in the first place. The Inquirer's series "Assault on Learning" (March 2011) reported that in the 2010 school year, "690 teachers were assaulted; in the last five years, 4,000 were." The newspaper reported that in Philadelphia's 268 schools, "on an average day 25 students, teachers, or other staff members were beaten, robbed, sexually assaulted, or victims of other violent crimes. That doesn't even include thousands more who are extorted, threatened, or bullied in a school year." I graduated from Philadelphia's Benjamin Franklin High School in 1954. Franklin's students were from the poorest North Philadelphia neighborhoods -- such as the Richard Allen housing project, where I lived -- but there were no policemen patrolling the hallways. There were occasional after-school fights -- rumbles, we called them -- but within the school, there was order. Students didn't use foul language to teachers, much less assault them.…

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"To Stop the Multiplication of the Unfit" 2.9.12

2012-02-10 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

If you aren't creeped out by the No Birth Control Left Behind rhetoric of the White House and Planned Parenthood, you aren't listening closely enough. The anesthetic of progressive benevolence always dulls the senses. Wake up. When a bunch of wealthy white women and elite Washington bureaucrats defend the trampling of religious liberties in the name of "increased access" to "reproductive services" for "poor" women, the ghost of Margaret Sanger is cackling. As she wrote in her autobiography, Sanger founded Planned Parenthood in 1916 "to stop the multiplication of the unfit." This, she boasted, would be "the most important and greatest step towards race betterment." While she oversaw the mass murder of black babies, Sanger cynically recruited minority activists to front her death racket. She conspired with eugenics financier and businessman Clarence Gamble to "hire three or four colored ministers, preferably with social-service backgrounds, and with engaging personalities" to sell their genocidal policies as community health and welfare services. Outright murder wouldn't sell. But wrapping it under the egalitarian cloak of "women's health" -- and adorning it with the moral authority of black churches -- would. Sanger and Gamble called their deadly campaign "The Negro Project."…

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Obama Invites Backlash on Conscience Rule Betrayal 2.9.12

2012-02-10 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

As God's instrument, Moses parted the Red Sea. Well, it appears President Obama has a different idea. With a wave of his hand, he's going to reunite our bitterly divided political waters on the hottest of hot-button issues. Don't get me wrong; Obama's conscious effort to divide Americans on the basis of race, ethnicity, religion and wealth for political purposes is alive and thriving. That's a separate phenomenon. What I'm talking about here is his apparent conviction that by sheer force of his presence, his charisma, his aura and his gift for supernatural nuance, he can utter magical words on any bitterly controversial matter and instantly reconcile opposing factions, even on matters that do not lend themselves to neat solutions. This exaggerated sense of self-worth, not just his visceral liberal inclination toward appeasement, is what leads him to believe he can negotiate with terrorists and persuade them to renounce their jihad against America upon witnessing his world apology tour, his outreach to Muslims in Cairo, his witch hunt against CIA interrogators, and his shoutouts to the Muslim Brotherhood. (Don't tell him, but polls show he's even less popular than President George W. Bush was in the Muslim world.) His stunning absence of any awareness of his own limitations (Socrates' wisdom yardstick) is obviously what convinced him he could deliver a speech at the University of Notre Dame that would induce a bilateral epiphany in which both sides of the abortion debate would finally realize that until he had deconstructed the issue so elegantly, they had been looking through the abortion glass darkly. Henceforth, they would see clearly and bask in the glow of harmonic convergence where pro-life advocates would appreciate the bizarre concept of a mother's sacred reproductive rights and the pro-aborts would come to understand, er, never mind. Only one side in these arguments needs to show movement -- the side that opposes Obama's beliefs.…

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Referendum on the Incumbent 2.9.12

2012-02-10 :: Linda Chavez
Length: 5s

Conventional wisdom suggests that the current refusal of the GOP base to accept Mitt Romney as the de facto presidential nominee will doom the party to failure in the fall. The thought is that too many debates, too much sniping among the candidates, and an overall enthusiasm deficit will leave the nominee -- and the odds still favor Romney -- mortally wounded. But this election was never going to be decided so much by voters affirmatively choosing the Republican candidate as by whether they were going to reject Barack Obama. Second-term elections are always a referendum on the incumbent, not the challenger. And when Americans have chosen to turn out a sitting president, it has rarely been because the challenger was so much more appealing. The qualities of the challenger aren't irrelevant; they're just not as decisive as the perceived success or failure of the incumbent. In 1980, Americans chose to give Jimmy Carter the boot. Inflation and interest rates had gone through the roof on his watch, and unemployment had risen. The Soviet Union had invaded Afghanistan, and its surrogates had made inroads in the United States' own backyard. Carter made Americans feel bad about themselves, so they voted him out of office. Many Americans didn't know all that much about Ronald Reagan, and the media tried to make him out to be a reckless cowboy, but voters knew they didn't want more of Carter. The same could be said of George H.W. Bush. Voters liked him enough when he pushed Saddam Hussein out of Kuwait in the hundred-hour war, but by the time re-election rolled around, things had changed. Bill Clinton was a small-time governor from a southern state but became the Democrats' nominee largely because better-known candidates with bigger reputations hadn't bothered to run. But he won because voters were tired of Bush.…

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Do You Speak Conservative? 2.9.12

2012-02-10 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Newt Gingrich knows the lingo. He makes conservative audiences roar with approval when he compares the efficiency of FedEx and MasterCard to the post office and Immigration and Customs Enforcement. He never loses an opportunity to attack the press for its moral preening. Conservatives adore this table turning. Nothing makes them angrier than to be derided as heartless by people who define virtue by their willingness to give away other people's money. Rick Perry quickly lost his own conservative luster when he used the word "heartless" about his Republican rivals. Want to see how conservatives behave? Rent and watch "The Blind Side." The family that adopted Michael Oher, a homeless black teenager, was conservative and Christian. Think that's an anomaly? Glance at the families of Republican office seekers. John and Cindy McCain adopted a sickly child from Pakistan. Jon and Mary Kaye Huntsman have two adopted daughters, one from China and one from India. Michele and Marcus Bachmann have five biological children and fostered 23 teenagers -- many with eating disorders and other challenges. Wander into any church or synagogue on the weekend and you will find more of a "rainbow coalition" than at a New York Times editorial conference. Self-described conservatives, as Arthur C. Brooks demonstrated so cogently in his book "Who Really Cares," donate more to charity than do self-identified liberals. Perhaps that's because conservatives are wealthier? No. Liberals on average earn 6 percent more than conservatives. Yet conservatives donate about 30 percent more. Conservatives also volunteer more of their time -- and their blood. Brooks writes: "If liberals and moderates gave blood at the same rate as conservatives, the blood supply of the United States would jump about 45 percent." Of the 25 states that had higher than average charitable giving, 24 went for George W. Bush over John Kerry in 2004.…

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GOP Must Convince Young People It's the Party of Options 2.8.12

2012-02-09 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

The Republican presidential candidates, except for Ron Paul, haven't been paying much attention to young voters in the primaries and caucuses so far. But any Republican nominee -- which is to say probably Mitt Romney, or maybe Newt Gingrich or Rick Santorum -- had better be paying attention to them in the summer and fall. The reason three of the four Republicans haven't paid much attention to young voters is that the under-30 folks have been turning out in the Republican contests in miniscule numbers. According to entrance and exit polls, voters under 30 accounted for 15 percent of participants in Iowa, 12 percent in New Hampshire, 9 percent in South Carolina, 6 percent in Florida and 8 percent in Nevada. By way of comparison, voters that age were 18 percent of the electorate in November 2008. And, in that election, they voted 66 percent to 32 percent for Barack Obama over John McCain. Voters above that age favored Obama by only 50 percent to 49 percent. McCain would have won if the voting age were 35. In this year's Republican contests, the big winner among young voters has been Ron Paul. His libertarian message -- on monetary policy, marijuana policy and foreign policy -- has brought out the under-30 voters, though many and perhaps most don't identify themselves as Republicans at all.…

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Aren't Republicans Supposed to Be Colorblind? 2.8.12

2012-02-09 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

"Which of our Hispanic leaders would you consider to serve in your Cabinet?" A woman attending the last Republican debate in Florida asked this of the four Republican rivals. Oh, for crying out loud! Ethnic-based Cabinet appointees? Do we still need to go out and "seek" people of a certain color or religion to show "fairness and inclusion"? What about considering the best people possible -- isn't that the only appropriate answer to that question? But Republicans go all Democrat, all too often, in front of black and brown audiences. They say things to show how empathic they are, rather than promote their principles as beneficial to all, regardless of race or gender or ethnicity. Look at the way former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum answered this Cabinet question. Obviously anticipating such a query, they spat out practically every Hispanic name they could think of short of the Frito Bandito. Only one, libertarian Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, said the right thing. Paul simply said he wanted someone who understands fiscal and monetary policy -- "Hispanic or otherwise." And Paul won't be the nominee.…

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Obama's Halftime Hypocrisy 2.7.12

2012-02-08 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

On Super Bowl Sunday, America was treated to the most expensive political commercial in history -- brought to you by Chrysler -- called "It's Halftime in America." In a series of vapid non sequiturs, Clint Eastwood's gravelly voice pinned the promise of a city -- no, a nation -- to government dependency, claiming that "the people of Detroit" lost almost everything but because "we" pulled together and the "Motor City is fighting again" -- punching, roaring, imbued with American grit -- we survived.…

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Super PAC-Men: Obama Bundlers Gone Wild! 2.7.12

2012-02-08 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

The White House didn't blow a dog whistle for deep-pocketed liberal donors on Monday. No, the administration whipped out a supersized vuvuzela. Blaring message: Let loose the campaign finance-bundling hounds of super PAC war! President Obama's campaign manager, Jim Messina, who served as White House deputy chief of staff for operations before assuming 2012 re-election duties, announced the super PAC super-flip-flop in a mass e-mail to supporters and a blog post published on the left-wing Huffington Post website. In a related conference call to major campaign finance bundlers, Messina encouraged these high-dollar donors to start funding Priorities USA Action. That's the Democratic super PAC founded by former White House staffers Bill Burton and Sean Sweeney.…

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Economic Chaos Ahead 2.6.12

2012-02-06 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

Let's think about the kind of mess that we're in. Federal 2010 Medicare and Medicaid expenditures totaled $800 billion. The projected annual growth of both programs is about 7 percent. Social Security expenditures are more than $700 billion a year. According to the 2009 Social Security and Medicare trustees reports, by 2030, 49 percent of federal revenues will go for Social Security and Medicare payments. The unfunded liability of both programs is already $106 trillion. But not to worry. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that it's possible to sustain today's level of federal spending and even achieve a balanced budget. All that Congress would have to do is raise the lowest income tax bracket of 10 percent to 25 percent and the middle tax bracket of 25 percent to 66 percent and raise the 35 percent tax bracket to 92 percent. That's a static vision that assumes that people will have no response and they'll work just as hard and send more money to Washington. If Congress did legislate such tax increases, it would be the economic equivalent of committing national hara-kiri.…

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A Defining Moment 2.6.12

2012-02-06 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

Governor Mitt Romney's statement about not worrying about the poor has been treated as a gaffe in much of the media, and those in the Republican establishment who have been rushing toward endorsing his coronation as the GOP's nominee for president -- with 90 percent of the delegates still not yet chosen -- have been trying to sweep his statement under the rug. But Romney's statement about not worrying about the poor -- because they "have a very ample safety net" -- was followed by a statement that was not just a slip of the tongue, and should be a defining moment in telling us about this man's qualifications as a conservative and, more important, as a potential President of the United States.…

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Removing Planned Parenthood's Fig Leaf 2.6.12

2012-02-06 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Planned Parenthood would appear to have won this latest skirmish in the abortion wars. The Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation having first decided to withdraw future grants to the world's largest abortion provider, quickly retreated under a barrage of accusations, complaints and threats. No fewer than 26 Democratic senators signed a letter to Komen saying, in part that, "It would be tragic if any woman --let alone thousands of women -- lost access to these potentially life-saving screenings because of a politically motivated attack. We earnestly hope that you will put women's health before partisan politics and reconsider this decision . . ."…

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Obama Says He Deserves a Second Term; Let's Consider 2.6.12

2012-02-06 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

President Obama told NBC's Matt Lauer in an interview Sunday, "I deserve a second term." Well, let's see. He had the courage to tell the Supreme Court off for daring to defy him in its campaign finance law ruling. And he did it during his State of the Union speech, when they weren't in a position to object, showing just what a marvelous tactician he is. He was not about to be stymied by an obstructionist Republican House that didn't buy into his Euro-fashionable idea that we're all going to die from catastrophic man-made global warming. So when those knuckleheads wouldn't pass cap and trade, his Environmental Protection Agency lawlessly imposed its own emission standards. He showed those Republicans.…

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Feminists Are Anti-Choice 2.2.12

2012-02-03 :: Linda Chavez
Length: 5s

Horror of horrors! Lego has introduced a new line of gender-specific toys aimed at girls. I might not even have become aware of the controversy had it not been a topic of discussion on the all-female PBS talk show "To the Contrary," on which I frequently appear. That we are still debating the pros and cons of allowing boys and girls to prefer different play choices says a great deal about the failure of the feminist movement. Lego, which markets plastic building blocks for everything from "Star Wars" fighting vehicles to Egyptian pyramids, has now introduced a line aimed at young girls. The new toys include Butterfly Beauty Shop, Stephanie's Outdoor Bakery, and Olivia's House, all featuring recognizable girl figures with long hair and feminine outlines, unlike the squat, sexless figures that characterize many of the company's other building sets. More importantly, these toys depict girls engaging in traditionally female activities and roles: getting their hair done, baking, caring for children. The company says that it has introduced the new line because of customer demand. Little girls (or their mothers) apparently aren't lining up to buy Lego's Fangpyre Wrecking Balls or Pirates of the Caribbean. But feminist critics say that the real motive is to reinforce gender stereotypes and limit little girls' aspirations. In fact, it's the feminists who want to limit women's choices. Their message to girls and young women is: If you're not exactly like men, you don't believe in equal rights.…

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What Is It About 'No Free Lunch' That Obama Doesn't Understand? 2.2.12

2012-02-03 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

Obama's latest homeowner mortgage relief plan is perfect for him: It both is consistent with his ideology -- duh -- and allows him to buy more votes with someone else's money, all the while pretending there is in fact such a thing as a free lunch. The painfully superficial liberal approach to poverty gets old, as does its corollary tenet that conservatives who reject liberals' failed ideas lack compassion. Indeed, Obama seemed to devote half the words in his prayer breakfast speech to proving that Scripture compels liberal policies. Obama's latest proof that he cares more than we do is his proposal to "give every responsible homeowner in America a chance to save about $3,000 a year on their mortgage by refinancing at historically low rates. No more red tape. No more runaround from the banks." This has all the elements. He frames the program as applying only to (SET ITAL) responsible (END ITAL) mortgagors; he personally gets credit for handing out this money from his legendary "stash"; government, not the market, dictates what the interest rate will be; government will wave its magic wand forbidding "red tape" and bureaucratic obstacles; and banks, one of his favorite targets, are demonized and lined up to be punished. But haven't we had enough of this man's top-down manipulation of the market in the guise of helping people? Is he ever to be held accountable for similar failed programs he's already tried? How about that $75 billion mortgage relief plan he implemented in 2009? You know, the one he said would "give millions of families resigned to financial ruin a chance to rebuild"? The one he said would save 7 million to 9 million mortgages.…

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Drop the Middle Class Talk 2.2.12

2012-02-03 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

In 1992, Arkansas Gov. Bill Clinton built his campaign for the White House on doing more for the "forgotten middle class." Calling it the "new covenant" (Democrats since Roosevelt have tried to work the words "new" or "deal" into their campaign slogans), Clinton promised to focus on the people he called "the backbone of the country, the ones who do the work and pay the taxes and send their children off to war." Sound familiar? Here is Mitt Romney, the morning after the Florida primary: "I'm in this race because I care about Americans. I'm not concerned about the very poor. We have a safety net there. If it needs repair, I'll fix it. I'm not concerned about the very rich; they're doing just fine. I'm concerned about the very heart of ... America, the 90 percent, 95 percent of Americans who right now are struggling." The usual firestorm erupted -- with liberals and conservatives alike pouncing on evidence of Romney's "tin ear." NPR anticipated (eagerly?) that Romney's words would show up in Democratic attack ads. And an exasperated Jonah Goldberg wondered in National Review Online whether Romney actually knows how to play this game: " . . . The concern is, after nearly a decade of running for president, if he can't get this stuff down now he never will."…

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Democrats Love Taxes -- They Just Don't Want to Pay Them 2.1.12

2012-02-03 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

Forgive Republican candidate Mitt Romney for his alleged failure to adequately explain why he paid "only" 14 percent of his income in taxes. The honest answer -- "Well, because my accountants couldn't figure out how to get them any lower" -- does not work in this or very many other election years. Romney seemed flat-footed because, like most business people, he seeks to minimize costs and expenses. This includes taxes. A normal wealthy-and-proud-of-it guy would have said: "Let me get this straight, pal. I'm not supposed to take every legal advantage provided me by the tax laws to reduce my taxes?" For what it's worth, about 15 percent of Romney's last two years of income went to charity -- substantially higher than the percentage given by the Obamas or Joe Biden's $380 (not a typo) of his quarter-million dollar income in 2006.…

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Romney's Edge: Electability 1.31.12

2012-01-31 :: Dick Morris
Length: 5s

Mitt Romney's sudden surge in Florida reflects a basic fear voters have of nominating former Speaker Newt Gingrich. Despite his obvious brilliance, creative ideas and stimulating turns of phrase, they worry that he will come across as too strident to voters and will cost the Republican Party the presidency. Women, in particular, worry that his personal baggage may impair his ability to defeat Barack Obama in November. Instead, both genders are coming to feel that it is better not to take a chance and to vote for Mitt Romney, the more electable of the two.…

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Complexity Compounded 1.31.12

2012-01-31 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

In his State of the Union address last week, President Obama used billionaire investor Warren Buffett's secretary, Debbie Bosanek, as a prop to illustrate the unfairness of our tax system. "Right now," he said as Bosanek sat near first lady Michelle Obama, "Warren Buffett pays a lower tax rate than his secretary." Commentators spent the next week speculating about what Obama meant. Was he referring to marginal rates or effective rates? On taxable income or adjusted gross income? Was he talking about federal income taxes or payroll taxes, as well? If the latter, was he counting the so-called employer's share or just the employee's share? What about state income taxes?…

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First, They Came for the Catholics 1.31.12

2012-01-31 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

President Obama and his radical feminist enforcers have had it in for Catholic medical providers from the get-go. It's about time all people of faith fought back against this unprecedented encroachment on religious liberty. First, they came for the Catholics. Who's next? This weekend, Catholic bishops informed parishioners of the recent White House edict forcing religious hospitals, schools, charities and other health and social service providers to provide "free" abortifacient pills, sterilizations and contraception on demand in their insurance plans -- even if it violates their moral consciences and the teachings of their churches.…

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Republicans' Obamacare Problem 1.31.12

2012-01-31 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

Once the presidential nomination process is settled -- and Lord knows that day can't come fast enough -- Republicans will get back to doing what they do best, getting on Barack Obama's case. Incredibly, though, they'll have to do it without one of their most potent arguments. The Republican candidate, after all, can't effectively attack what he supports. Today both leading contenders for the nomination have defended the idea of government's forcing all consumers to buy something in the interest of the common good. An individual mandate is about health insurance today, but really no one has offered any good reason Washington couldn't force us to buy a government-sanctioned iPad or rubber ducky tomorrow.…

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The 2012 Race Takes Shape 1.27.12

2012-01-30 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

We got mixed signals from a turbulent political week. Barack Obama seems to be enjoying an uptick in polls -- up toward, but not quite at, 50 percent approval. It's a reminder that he can expect to benefit from Americans' desire to think well of their presidents and from the reluctance of many voters to be seen as rejecting the first black president. But his weakness was apparent in his State of the Union address: issues. He devoted a mere 44 words to the health care law passed in March 2010. This is the strongest evidence possible that his signal legislative achievement is a millstone around the neck of his campaign. Similarly, we heard little in the hour-plus speech about infrastructure. The words "shovel-ready projects" and "high-speed rail" appeared nowhere -- significant omissions from a president who (as a mischievous Republican ad shows) sprinkles the same phrases in one State of the Union after another. And there was a third omission, not perhaps as obvious but, in the long run, possibly more glaring -- the omission of any serious public policy initiatives to quicken the pace of economic growth and address the long-term entitlement problems that Obama has occasionally noted. Yes, he did call for higher taxes on high earners. But the man who can call on experts at the Treasury Department to draft legislation gave no indication that he has any feasible draft for his "Buffett rule," which would presumably require a second alternative minimum tax for very high earners.…

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They Have Islamist Fanatics, We Have Secularist Fanatics 1.30.12

2012-01-30 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

The Muslim world is threatened by religious fanaticism. The Western world is threatened by secular fanaticism. Both seek to dominate society and to use state power to do so. Both seek to eliminate the Other -- for Islamic fanatics, that means non-Muslim religions and secularism; for secular fanatics, it means Christianity and virtually any public invoking of God. The Islamists impose Sharia law; the American Civil Liberties Union and the left generally impose secular law. The Taliban wiped out public vestiges of Buddhism in Afghanistan; the ACLU and its allies seek to wipe out public vestiges of Christianity in America -- as it did, for example, in Los Angeles County, when it successfully pressured the County Board of Supervisors to remove the tiny cross from the county seal. A city and county founded by Catholics -- hence the name "The Angels" -- was forced to stop commemorating its founders because they were religious.…

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Social Pressure to Marry Is Dead 1.30.12

2012-01-30 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

The advice columns of newspapers are good windows into the conscience of a culture. There you will find a field guide to what is considered socially acceptable and unacceptable. One of the advice columnists for the Washington Post, Carolyn Hax, is consistently sensible and solid in her suggestions. Straightening out busybodies, drug abusers, interfering in-laws and ungrateful children with equal aplomb, she's usually a pleasant read with the morning coffee. But not always. A recent response to a letter from "Grandmother-to-be" provides an example of the collapse of social wisdom on the subject of marriage and childbearing. "My 26-year-old son's girlfriend -- of four months -- is pregnant," wrote grandma. "I have very mixed emotions about this, mainly because he just met her, and I do not know her. They work and live across the country. I am disappointed in their behavior. How do I tell my friends the news? I am embarrassed."…

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Getting Nowhere, Very Fast 1.30.12

2012-01-30 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

California has a huge state debt and Washington has a huge national debt. But that does not discourage either Governor Jerry Brown or President Barack Obama from wanting to launch a very costly high-speed rail system. Most of us might be a little skittish about spending money if we were teetering on the brink of bankruptcy. But the beauty of politics is that it is all other people's money, including among those other people generations yet unborn.…

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Let's Honor, Not Stretch, the Buckley Rule 1.30.12

2012-01-30 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

In the intense heat of the present, it is easy to forget even the relatively recent past, but it seems to me that this GOP primary season is more acrimonious than the past few, probably because the stakes are so high. When I've noted that this is the most important presidential election of our lifetimes, a few excitability-resistant conservative friends have said, "They have been saying that about every election for more than a generation." My response to that is:…

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Proof Voters Are Smarter Than Media and Washington Elite 1.30.12

2012-01-30 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

I think the mainstream media and Washington elite think the majority of voters just fell off the turnip truck. But the South Carolina primary and other current voting trends show otherwise. The MSM are working double time to get us to forget about the unprecedented results of the South Carolina primary, but they are a sign of what could be in Florida, Nevada and beyond. They are also proof that American citizens will not be outwitted by the political shenanigans of the powers that be. Let me give you a few examples.…

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Obama's Racial Politics 1.30.12

2012-01-30 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

There's been a heap of criticism placed upon President Barack Obama's domestic policies that have promoted government intrusion and prolonged our fiscal crisis and his foreign policies that have emboldened our enemies. Any criticism of Obama pales in comparison with what might be said about the American people who voted him in to the nation's highest office. Obama's presidency represents the first time in our history that a person could have been elected to that office who had long-standing close associations with people who hate our nation. I'm speaking of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Obama's pastor for 20 years, who preached that blacks should sing not "God Bless America," but "God damn America." Then there's William Ayers, now professor of education at the University of Illinois at Chicago but formerly a member of the Weather Underground, an anti-U.S. group that bombed the Pentagon, U.S. Capitol and other government buildings. Although Ayers was never convicted of any crime, he told a New York Times reporter, in the wake of the September 2001 terrorist attack, "I don't regret setting bombs. ... I feel we didn't do enough." Obama has served on a foundation board, appeared on panels, and even held campaign events in Ayers' home, joined by Ayers' former-fugitive wife, Bernardine Dohrn. Bill Ayers' close association with Obama is reflected by his admission that he helped write Obama's memoirs, "Dreams from My Father."…

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Mr. and Mrs. Cranky Pants 1.26.12

2012-01-26 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

So, it turns out that the cool cat billed as "No Drama Obama" by his sycophants is actually quite the drama queen. While the White House publicly pretends to ignore conservative detractors of his administration, Chief Touchy-Touchy seems to be personally consumed by our critiques. Yes, mine included. On Wednesday, the president had himself a mini-"Toddlers and Tiaras"-style meltdown with Arizona GOP Gov. Jan Brewer after landing in Phoenix for a post-State of the Union dog-and-pony show. As Brewer told pool reporters on the scene, Obama took umbrage at Brewer's recent memoir. She minced no words on the cover: "Scorpions for Breakfast: My Fight Against Special Interests, Liberal Media, and Cynical Politicos to Secure America's Border." And she minced no words describing her impressions of Obama as they sparred over her state's tough immigration enforcement law, which is now the subject of a Justice Department witch-hunt. Brewer called Obama "patronizing" and "condescending." I'd say she was excruciatingly polite. According to Brewer, "He was a little disturbed about my book. ... I said to him that I have all the respect in the world for the office of the president. The book is what the book is. I asked him if he read the book. He said he read (an) excerpt." In the shadow of Air Force One, Obama complained that Brewer hadn't "treated him cordially" and then stalked off while she was responding mid-sentence. Photogs captured the fracas on film. The civility police gasped at Brewer's "disrespectful" finger-pointing. On cue, one progressive commentator insinuated the gesture was a "racist" jab tantamount to lynching..…

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For Gingrich, Amnesty no Impediment to Nomination 1.26.12

2012-01-26 :: Linda Chavez
Length: 5s

One thing was missed in Newt Gingrich's victory in the South Carolina primary: Conservatives embraced a pro-amnesty candidate without batting an eyelash. This should come as a wake-up call to those who've been pushing a hard-line anti-illegal immigrant position in the Republican Party. Granted, Gingrich didn't spend a lot of time discussing his position, which favors amnesty for those illegal immigrants who have been here for a long time, have deep family and community ties, and have paid taxes and avoided breaking other laws. But that's the point. He didn't have to spend a lot of time defending his position because so few conservatives cared. Now Gingrich seems poised to win another Southern primary: Florida. The latest polls show him within a few percentage points of beating Mitt Romney again (and at least one poll shows him up by 5 points). Whether or not a Gingrich win is a good thing for Republican prospects in the fall, it could help lay the groundwork for future Republican victories by defusing an issue that is guaranteed to alienate the fastest-growing segment of the voting population. Like other voters, most Hispanics care a lot more about jobs than they do about immigration. Still, they are turned off by candidates who portray illegal immigrants as criminal invaders who want a handout from U.S. taxpayers. Republicans have damaged their ability to woo an important constituency by insisting on a punitive approach to illegal immigration. In this election alone, it could cost Republicans key states critical to winning the presidency: Florida, Colorado, Nevada and New Mexico.…

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Obama's Misstatements on the Union 1.26.12

2012-01-26 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

Only a president long shielded from criticism and accountability could make the kind of State of the Union speech President Obama did Tuesday night. It's hard to know where to begin, given his repetition of tired ideas from his previous SOTUs, his taking credit for successful policies he resisted and omitting failed ones he promoted, his numerous misrepresentations on issues big and small, and his glaring refusal to address the main issues that threaten the nation. Let me touch on just a few highlights in this brief space. Excessive spending is the primary threat to our nation's and Americans' financial future, yet Obama glossed over it and distorted his record. He said, "We've already agreed to more than $2 trillion in cuts and savings. But we need to do more." But everyone knows he's had to be dragged kicking and screaming to the cutting table. His unrelenting passion is spending. Even The Washington Post said, "Obama does not mention that Republicans forced him to accept $2 trillion in budget cuts during the debt-ceiling impasse." Obama said, "I'm prepared to make more reforms that rein in the long-term costs of Medicare and Medicaid and strengthen Social Security, so long as those programs remain a guarantee of security for seniors." Well, that's mighty magnanimous of him, but why is he so grudging about it? As president, he should be singularly focused on entitlement reform. Yet he has obstructed and demagogued such reforms. His condition that the "programs remain a guarantee of security for seniors" is completely dishonest, because Paul Ryan's plan did just that and he rejected it while ridiculing and demonizing Ryan.…

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Romney Should be Proud 1.26.12

2012-01-26 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

It's as predictable as vultures at a carcass. When a wealthy Republican is running for office, the press will make his wealth a handicap. Recall that when George H. W. Bush was running in 1988, he was derided as a "preppy." George W. Bush was the undeserving scion of the ruling class. We were told never mind that he had succeeded in business on his own. Though John McCain had been a fixture on the national stage since 1980, no one had paid much attention to his wealth until he was the Republican nominee, at which point his many houses suddenly became a matter of profound national importance. Democrats, of course, are permitted to be rich without fear of undue scrutiny. John F. Kennedy was wealthier than Mitt Romney, or would have been had he lived to collect his inheritance. Lyndon B. Johnson was born poor and died very rich. He didn't earn his money in the private sector. He used political influence to first purchase and then maintain monopolistic radio licenses in his wife's name. There wasn't much fuss about John Kerry's great wealth in 2004. Kerry didn't earn his fortune either but secured it through two advantageous marriages. Teresa Heinz Kerry is rumored to be in the billionaires' club. Good for her. Though, she didn't earn it either, but rather married the heir of the ketchup fortune. John Kerry was an advocate of raising taxes on the rich, but he, like Warren Buffett, declined to contribute more than required to Uncle Sam. In fact, he was caught mooring his yacht in Rhode Island so as to avoid Massachusetts' taxes. Oh, and before he married Teresa Heinz, there were a number of years when Sen. Kerry donated nothing at all to charity.…

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Newt Declares War on Media 1.25.12

2012-01-26 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

The Republican re-embrace of former Speaker Newt Gingrich says a lot about whom he sees as his opponent -- and it isn't just President Barack Obama. It's the media. If not for major media's embrace, Obama would still be sitting in the Senate, perhaps mulling another run for the presidency. A UCLA economist-political scientist recently tried to measure how the liberal media bias influences the way people vote. He concluded that this bias gives the Democrat candidate 8 to 10 percentage points. Republicans understand this. So does Gingrich -- on a very deep level. He knows the media dislike him above and beyond their anti-conservative Republican disdain. That he is testy, no-nonsense, whip smart and knowledgeable makes him formidable. That he engineered the 1994 GOP takeover of the House and pushed former President Bill Clinton into governing in the center makes him effective. The good news for the media is that Gingrich is a Southern white male Christian Republican. He belongs to a group for which no advocacy organization exists to play the race/sex/religion card when Gingrich gets called -- on-air by cable hosts and pundits -- "racist," "disgusting" and a "pig." Gingrich bites back. Hard. Thus, he addresses the question of his messy personal life while hitting the CNN moderator for bringing this up as the first question. Gingrich knows he lacks the Reaganesque "aw, shucks" persona. Reagan used his sunny disposition to counter the media's attempt to portray him as a dangerous nutcase whose finger should never go near the nuclear button -- not unlike how many try to portray Gingrich.…

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Is Anybody Serious? 1.25.12

2012-01-26 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

The Republican candidates' circular firing squad now seems to be using machine guns. Whoever the eventual "last man standing" turns out to be, he may not be standing very tall or very steadily on his feet -- and he may be a pushover for Barack Obama in the general election, thanks to fellow Republicans. Whether you are a Democrat, a Republican or an independent, this is a very serious and historically crucial time for the United States of America. What Mitt Romney did or did not do when he was with Bain Capital, or what Newt Gingrich did or did not say to his ex-wife, are things that should be left for the tabloids. With the economy still faltering and Iran on its way to getting nuclear bombs, surely we can get serious about the issues facing this nation. Or can we? Mitt Romney's boasts about what he did at Bain Capital are as irrelevant as Newt Gingrich's demagogic attacks on Romney's role there. Romney is not running to become head of Bain Capital. While Gingrich backed away from his demagoguery about Bain Capital, Romney is continuing to press ahead with his charges that Gingrich was a lobbyist for Freddie Mac. As someone who has been a consultant, but never a lobbyist, I know the difference. As a consultant, I have offered advice to people in government and in private organizations, both businesses and non-profit organizations. But I have never gone to a government official to urge that official to make a decision favorable to those who were paying me, or to those for whom I did free consulting.…

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Unlike Obama, GOP Candidates Talk Seriously About Governing 1.25.12

2012-01-26 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

You know politicians are serious when they move from campaigning to governing. Something like that may be happening on the Republican campaign trail -- but, unfortunately, not at the Obama White House. Campaigning clearly carried the day for Newt Gingrich in South Carolina, where he beat Mitt Romney by a 40 percent to 28 percent margin. It's generally agreed that Gingrich clinched the race when he reacted angrily to questions by Fox News's Juan Williams and CNN's John King. Both times Gingrich got standing ovations. But not for how he'd govern. His platform can be summed up in a bumper sticker a Washington lawyer printed to buck up George H.W. Bush's hapless 1992 campaign: "Annoy the media -- vote for Bush." It was fun but didn't win many votes. South Carolina Republicans got a charge out of imagining how Gingrich would rebuke Barack Obama in the Lincoln-Douglas debates he's been proposing. Except of course Obama would never agree to that format. In the Monday debate at Tampa, Fla., Romney came back hard at Gingrich, saying that he had been ousted as speaker by his own party and that he had to resign "in disgrace." Gingrich complained afterward about the ban on applause and said he might not show up for later debates with a similar ban (although it is imposed in the fall debates). What's important here is that Romney went after Gingrich for the way he governed. Gingrich cites, with a little exaggeration, significant things he achieved as speaker -- welfare reform, holding spending down, tax cuts.…

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GPS Tracking and Other New Surveillance Technologies Threaten Privacy 1.24.12

2012-01-24 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

"If you win this case," Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer told Deputy Solicitor General Michael Dreeben during oral argument in U.S. v. Jones last fall, "there is nothing to prevent the police or the government from monitoring 24 hours a day the public movement of every citizen of the United States." That prospect, Breyer said, "sounds like '1984.'" Fortunately, the government did not win the case. But the court's unanimous decision, announced on Monday, may not delay Breyer's '1984' scenario for long. Unless the court moves more boldly to restrain government use of new surveillance technologies, the Framers' notion of a private sphere protected from "unreasonable searches and seizures" will become increasingly quaint.…

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Obama's Green Robber Barons 1.24.12

2012-01-24 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

Had enough of fat cat Barack Obama, his jet-setting wife and his multi-millionaire Chicago consigliere/real-estate mogul Valerie Jarrett attacking the "rich"? Well, brace yourselves. You'll be hearing much more from the White House about the "wealthy few" who aren't paying their "fair share" as Obama's re-election campaign doubles down on class-war demagoguery. As usual, there's always a set of immunity charms for the privileged friends and family of the ruling class. When it comes to all the Green Robber Barons who've reaped an obscenely unfair share of billions of tax dollars from the Obama administration, the envy trumpeteers will be quieter than a nest of mute church mice.…

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A See-Saw Campaign? 1.24.12

2012-01-24 :: Dick Morris
Length: 5s

Everybody was expecting a quick knockout in the GOP nominating contest this year. After a year of debating, it appeared that Mitt Romney would sweep the table after winning New Hampshire and seeming to win Iowa. Now, people are looking to see if Newt Gingrich can K.O. Romney, winning Florida after his stunning upset in South Carolina. But, as in a boxing bout where everyone is looking for a big punch and a quick end, this fight may frustrate everyone and go the distance. Not to a brokered convention. That won't happen. The winner-take-all rules the Republican National Committee imposed on primaries and caucuses held after April 1 militate against that outcome. But it will be a see-saw primary battle with one candidate the seeming winner only to watch his rival come storming back.…

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Evangelicals and Romney: Should Theology Matter? 1.23.12

2012-01-23 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

As an American, a Republican, and a fiscal and social conservative -- and though I have endorsed no Republican candidate -- there is one thing that would disturb me greatly if Mitt Romney were not the Republican nominee: if Romney's Mormon faith were a factor in his defeat. Many evangelical leaders have said that if Romney is the Republican presidential candidate, they would not vote for him in the general election. What is implied -- and sometimes explicitly stated -- is that his Mormonism prevents them from voting for him in the primaries. Most evangelicals label Mormonism a cult, and many accuse Mormons of being dishonest for calling themselves Christians.…

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Schools of Education 1.23.12

2012-01-23 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

Larry Sand's article "No Wonder Johnny (Still) Can't Read" -- written for The John William Pope Center for Higher Education Policy, based in Raleigh, N.C. -- blames schools of education for the decline in America's education. Education professors drum into students that they should not "drill and kill" or be the "sage on the stage" but instead be the "guide on the side" who "facilitates student discovery." This kind of harebrained thinking, coupled with multicultural nonsense, explains today's education. During his teacher education, Sand says, "teachers-to-be were forced to learn about this ethnic group, that impoverished group, this sexually anomalous group, that under-represented group, etc. -- all under the rubric of 'Culturally Responsive Education.'" Education majors are woefully lacking in academic skills. Here are some sample test questions for you to answer. Question 1: Which of the following is equal to a quarter-million? a) 40,000, b) 250,000, c) 2,500,000, d) 1/4,000,000 or e) 4/1,000,000. Question 2: Martin Luther King Jr. (insert the correct choice) for the poor of all races. a) spoke out passionately, b) spoke out passionate, c) did spoke out passionately, d) has spoke out passionately or e) had spoken out passionate. Question 3: What would you do if your student sprained an ankle? a) Put a Band-Aid on it, b) Ice it or c) Rinse it with water.…

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South Carolina Message 1.23.12

2012-01-23 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

Just days before the South Carolina primary, polls showed Mitt Romney leading Newt Gingrich. Then came the debates and the question about Gingrich's private life, which brought a devastating response from the former Speaker of the House -- and a standing ovation from the audience. Apparently the television audience felt the same way, judging by the huge turnaround in the support for Gingrich. The stunning victory in South Carolina brought Newt's candidacy back to life.…

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Just Attack the Media and We're At Your Feet 1.23.12

2012-01-23 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

So the message South Carolina voters sent was -- "Anything goes so long as you attack the media." Whatever you think about Mitt Romney's shortcomings as a candidate -- and I agree with Mark Steyn, who said of his stump speech, "The finely calibrated inoffensiveness is kind of offensive" -- embracing Gingrich is like bashing yourself in the face to relieve the pain in your foot. Certainly it's possible that the voters have done all of us a favor. If Gingrich's success there scares Romney into becoming a better candidate, then it may work out well in the general election.…

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The Question Is Not 'Electability,' but 'Re-electability' 1.23.12

2012-01-23 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

Republican internecine squabbles this primary season seem to turn on the vying candidates' respective electability against incumbent Barack Obama. But if even uber-liberal New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd has finally awakened to President Obama's arrogance, what does it say about (SET ITAL) his (END ITAL) electability? It's understandable that a lib would take so long to turn on the messiah, having invested so much in his presidency. But I wonder whether these people ever realize how late they are to the party and how utterly devoid of profundity their belated epiphanies are.…

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The Bank of (Democratic Party) America 1.17.12

2012-01-17 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

Well, isn't this rich? And I do mean rich. President Obama, man of the people, will deliver his presidential nomination acceptance speech at the Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C. -- so that Democratic Party fundraisers can reward big donors with skyboxes and other lavish perks. As usual, the White House and its allies are trying to camouflage naked partisan money-grubbing in populist garb.…

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Misguided Efforts Gave Us the Pretense of 'Independent' Campaign Spending 1.17.12

2012-01-17 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

Winning Our Future, a "super PAC" that supports Newt Gingrich's bid for the Republican presidential nomination, is spending more than $1.2 million on ads in South Carolina, which holds its primary on Saturday. That fact requires some explanation. First, why would anyone want Newt Gingrich to be president? Second, what is a super PAC? While the former question remains a mystery, the answer to the latter reveals how the vain crusade to curb the influence of money on elections has made talking about politics needlessly cumbersome and complicated.…

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How To Fight Money in Politics: Free Will 1.17.12

2012-01-17 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

Have you heard about these terrifying super PACs? According to cable news anchors -- and other trustworthy sources -- they're like political super-bugs, resistant to free will. Needless to say, the principled and high-minded political debates we've grown accustomed to are now over. Our unsullied national conversation is about to be defiled by a carpet-bombing of television ads and radio spots. And clearly, there is no better way to corrode "democracy" than allowing defenseless voters more exposure to free speech.…

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Newt Is Finally Newt Again 1.17.12

2012-01-17 :: Dick Morris
Length: 5s

The imposter who wallowed in negative ads; attacked capitalism at Bain Capital; and hemmed and hawed when asked about his role at Freddie Mac is gone. The real Newt Gingrich has returned! The former speaker was in his glory during Monday night's GOP debate in South Carolina. Inspired and egged on by a conservative crowd and appealing to a national TV audience, he put red meat before the voters. Rick Santorum, by contrast, served only white-meat chicken. It was a GOP debate, so nobody served pork.…

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Presidential Nonsense 1.16.12

2012-01-17 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

Last week, President Barack Obama, at a Capital Hilton fundraising event, told the crowd, "We can't go back to this brand of you're-on-your-own economics." Throughout my professional career as an economist, I've never come across the theory of "you're-on-your-own economics." I'm guessing what the president means by -- and finds offensive in -- "you're-on-your-own economics" is that it's a system in which people are held responsible for their actions, that they take risks and must live with the results, that people can't force others to pay for their mistakes, and that they can't live at the expense of other people. President Obama's vision was shared by our Pilgrim Fathers of the Plymouth Colony in modern-day Massachusetts. They established a communist system. They all farmed together, and whatever they produced was put in a common storehouse. A certain amount of food was rationed to each person regardless of his contribution to the work. Many Pilgrims complained that they were too weak from hunger to do their share of the work. As deeply religious as the Pilgrims were, they took to stealing from one another. Gov. William Bradford, writing his history of the colony in "Of Plymouth Plantation," said, "So as it well appeared that famine must still ensue, the next year also if not some way prevented."…

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My One Question for All GOP Candidates 1.16.12

2012-01-17 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

In my previous two columns, I outlined the 10 questions we need to ask to find our next president. I believe them wholeheartedly, but I have one last question that is almost as important as all of them combined. And it is for all the GOP candidates. During former House Speaker Newt Gingrich's November trip to Charleston, S.C., he said the following: "I do approach this whole campaign, I think, differently from everybody else. We have a number of friends who are also running. We have no opponents except Barack Obama. I think that's very important. I think (Abraham) Lincoln was very wise, as was captured in a book called 'Team of Rivals.' ... Literally everybody who was his opponent ended up in the Cabinet because he needed all of them in order to be able to put together the political power during the crisis that we faced. I would say the same thing. I don't know of a single person currently running who wouldn't be a very effective member of an administrative team and who doesn't have real talent and, in some way ... a unique strength. So I don't have any opponents on the Republican side."…

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An Ignored 'Disparity' 1.16.12

2012-01-17 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

With all the talk about "disparities" in innumerable contexts, there is one very important disparity that gets remarkably little attention -- disparities in the ability to create wealth. People who are preoccupied, or even obsessed, with disparities in income are seldom interested much, or at all, in the disparities in the ability to create wealth, which are often the reasons for the disparities in income. In a market economy, people pay us for benefiting them in some way -- whether we are sweeping their floors, selling them diamonds or anything in between. Disparities in our ability to create benefits for which others will pay us are huge, and the skills required can develop early -- or sometimes not at all.…

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Mark Levin's 'Ameritopia' 1.16.12

2012-01-17 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

Mark Levin's hard work in researching, organizing and writing his new book, "Ameritopia," will be a blessing for all who read it. Countless books chronicle the forward march of the liberal agenda and attempt to deconstruct the fallacies in modern leftist thinking. Many critique the statist policies the left has imposed on us the past half-century and their disastrous effects on our culture, our economy and our national security.…

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Don't Abandon Capitalism 1.12.12

2012-01-13 :: Linda Chavez
Length: 5s

It's bad enough when Democrats start playing class warfare, but when Republican presidential contenders begin using phrases like "vulture capitalism," it's time to be really worried. It's easy to dismiss as sour grapes Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry's attacks on Mitt Romney and Bain Capital, which Romney co-founded. It's no coincidence that the attacks are getting nastier in South Carolina, site of the next presidential primary and perhaps the last chance one of the challengers has of stalling Romney's path to the nomination. But Romney's critics should be ashamed of themselves for promoting anti-business stereotypes. The left has always treated wealth as suspect. If one person becomes rich, the assumption is that it is at another's expense, which is why the left believes government has the obligation to redistribute wealth. But it isn't just the left that has a poor understanding of wealth creation or how free-market capitalism works. A growing number of populist conservatives are deeply suspicious of corporate America, too. You can hear it in their rhetoric about everything from the bank bailouts to immigration. Corporations seem to be the new villains for everyone to hate. And no candidate in recent memory quite invokes the corporate image as much as Mitt Romney. He is the son of a car company executive. He looks like he just stepped off the pages of Fortune magazine. And it turns out that he made his own fortune heading up a private equity firm that specialized in corporate takeovers.…

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Obama's "Razist" Lobbyist Moves Up 1.12.12

2012-01-13 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

With public attention focused on the GOP primaries, the White House quietly promoted another self-dealing lobbyist to serve as President Obama's top domestic policy adviser. Promises? What broken promises? Cecilia Munoz, the current director of intergovernmental affairs at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., will now serve as head of the Domestic Policy Council. She'll wield heightened influence at Obama's daily morning briefings and expand her reach from immigration issues to education, health care and beyond. Gushing headlines heralded the advancement of Obama's top Hispanic civil rights "advocate" as a win for the "middle class." But Munoz is a veteran member of the Beltway lobbyist class whose former organization is reaping a taxpayer-funded windfall as she climbs the government ladder. Before joining Team Obama, Munoz spent two decades as chief registered lobbyist for the National Council of La Raza ("The Race"). Whose "middle class" does The Race represent? I've tracked the radical identity politics-driven group for years as it promoted drivers' licenses and in-state college tuition breaks for illegal aliens; opposed cooperative immigration enforcement efforts between local, state and federal authorities; and opposed a secure fence along the southern border.…

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It Isn't Just the Mandate 1.12.12

2012-01-13 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Most people have heard that Obamacare is being challenged as unconstitutional because it contains an individual mandate forcing people to purchase health insurance. That challenge is due to be heard by the Supreme Court this year. But while the mandate is certainly problematic in a system that, at least notionally, is one of limited and enumerated powers, the mandate is not the worst part of this bill -- not by a long shot. Truly, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) belongs in a museum somewhere in an exhibit about what can happen when you elect Democrat majorities to the House, Senate and White House. Like so much else in the Democratic agenda (Dodd-Frank, environmental regulation, mortgage relief), it relies not on incentives, competition or patient choice but on blatant government coercion.…

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Everything Is At Stake, All Right 1.12.12

2012-01-13 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

On this we can agree with President Obama: Everything he stands for is at stake in 2012. Obama told 500 fawning sycophants in Chicago that he is unrepentant about his policy agenda and intends to treat us to more of the same, much more, in a second term. Obama said, "Everything that we fought for is now at stake in this election." Lest there be no mistake, he repeated the message in the smaller settings of private homes. We can endlessly debate whether he is such a devoted ideologue that he's blind to his policy failures, whether he's willing to sacrifice the economy and the fiscal integrity of the United States for his perceived higher good of radical redistribution, or whether he really intends to do harm, but these are moot questions anymore. Under any of these possibilities, the fact remains that he is hellbent on accelerating his present course, not reversing it, on dictating, not working within his constitutional constraints, much less building a bipartisan consensus. Hubris and defiance are his trademarks, not humility. He said, "If you're willing to work even harder in this election than you did in the last election, I promise you, change will come."…

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'Tactical Voters' went to Romney in New Hampshire 1.11.12

2012-01-13 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

To win just under 40 percent of the vote in a primary with five active candidates is pretty impressive, even for a candidate like Mitt Romney, who started off with significant advantages in New Hampshire. Yes, he is well-known there because he was governor of next-door Massachusetts, had run before and owns a house on Lake Winnipesaukee. But the exit poll indicates Romney held his own among independents, tea party supporters and late deciders. He didn't lose ground in the heat of the campaign, despite his ragged performance in Sunday's debate (he was obviously not candid about why he didn't run for re-election as governor) and his Monday statement, instantly regretted if I read the videotape right, that "I like being able to fire people who provide services to me." Romney easily exceeded the 25 percent ceiling that many critics perceived, and he's running at least a bit above that in the few post-new-year polls in the next primary states, South Carolina and Florida.…

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Univision Attempt to Blackmail Marco Rubio -- Hispanic Groups Yawn 1.11.12

2012-01-13 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

Consider the following hypothetical. Fox News, during the 2008 presidential campaign, learns about a long-ago arrest of a relative of Sen. Barack Obama. Fox calls Obama. It makes an offer Fox assumes he cannot refuse: "Agree to appear on the show of your anti-ObamaCare nemesis, Sean Hannity, or we run the story on your relative's arrest." Obama refuses. Fox runs the story. Turns out the piece so lacks credibility that none of the other newspapers and television outlets, conservative or liberal, follow suit. A Fox executive later brags to a national magazine that Fox did, indeed, try to make mincemeat of Obama by getting him to debate ObamaCare on Hannity's show in exchange for sitting on a hit piece. Months after Fox's attempt, a big-city newspaper gets hold of the story. It writes a lengthy piece about Fox's sordid, and very possibly illegal, attempt at journalism by blackmail.…

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The Republicans' Cow Pie Bingo 1.11.12

2012-01-13 :: Steve Chapman
Length: 5s

The Republican presidential race now moves from New Hampshire to South Carolina, but it's really taking place in an upside-down Lake Wobegon -- where all the men are homely, all the women are weak and all the candidates are below average. We are often told that modern campaigns generate rivers of pointless trivia and shameful misinformation. But this one has served ably to do something that is as valuable to voters as it is unwelcome to the Republican Party: put a merciless spotlight on the mammoth flaws of every aspirant. There are people who yearn for the short political campaigns in parliamentary countries like Britain, where the process of choosing a national leader is over before Rick Perry can count to three. But in those places, candidates are generally well-known and thoroughly vetted before they offer themselves for the nation's highest office. Here, random individuals are apt to follow the example of Joan of Arc, called to service by voices only they can hear. As she discovered, though, an auspicious beginning doesn't assure a happy outcome. In a long, expensive, nonstop campaign like this one, first impressions mean nothing. What matters is enduring appeal. Or, at least, tolerability over time. The wide-open nature of presidential politics makes the campaign as unpredictable as cow pie bingo. Candidates who appear formidable while watching from the sidelines turn out to be inept on the field. Candidates who seem laughably unlikely at the outset suddenly take flight on the wings of destiny -- before eventually plunging back to earth. That's the value of the endless debates and media scrutiny. They expose every liability a candidate labors to conceal, while demolishing every asset the candidate presumes to publicize.…

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Romney and McCain: The GOP Frenemies' Club 1.10.12

2012-01-11 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

Michael Corleone said to "keep your friends close, but your enemies closer." But what, pray tell, do we do with our frenemies? This is the awful election-year quandary of movement conservatives. And everything you need to know about our heartache can be summed up in one image: 2008 presidential election loser John McCain and Mitt Romney together on the campaign trail. When they're together, they look like they're holding each other (and the rest of us) hostage. Their toxic chemistry makes seething, ex-newlyweds Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries look like Fred and Ginger. In New Hampshire last week, after Romney's Iowa caucus squeaker, an overly giddy McCain mocked his endorsee for his "landslide victory." Awkward.…

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The Freakin' FCC: The Increasingly Incomprehensible Ban on Broadcast Indecency 1.10.12

2012-01-11 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

My daughters, who range in age from 5 to 18, watch TV programs and movies on DVDs, on smart phones, streaming from Netflix through our Wii, on video websites, on our DVR and on demand from AT&T U-verse. They do not know or care what "broadcast television" is, and they certainly do not perceive a categorical distinction between "over-the-air" channels and the rest. But the Federal Communications Commission does, imposing a form of censorship on broadcast TV that would be clearly unconstitutional in any other context -- for the children, of course. A case the Supreme Court heard on Tuesday gives it an opportunity to renounce this obsolete doctrine once and for all.…

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The GOP's Creative Destruction 1.10.12

2012-01-11 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

Yes, it's true that unlike (SET ITAL) some (END ITAL) Republicans, Democrats don't "enjoy firing people." They enjoy "investing" your money in exploding electric vehicles, bullet trains and other highly unprofitable but morally satisfying economic misadventures. Venture socialism is certainly empathetic. Venture capitalism, on the other hand, happens to be useful. And until the presidential aspirations of Newt Gingrich were dashed by this starch-shirted RINO, there existed a target-rich environment for conservatives -- namely Mitt Romney's elastic record on policy. Yet for reasons well-known, Newt and other Republicans have chosen to make Barack Obama's populist case by attacking Romney's record at Bain Capital.…

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In Greed I Trust 1.9.12

2012-01-09 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

Last week's column started off asking: "What human motivation gets the most wonderful things done?" The answer is that human greed is what gets wonderful things done. I wasn't talking about fraud, theft, dishonesty, special privileges from government or other forms of despicable behavior. I was talking about people trying to get as much as they can for themselves. Think about greed and racial discrimination. In 1947, when the Brooklyn Dodgers hired Jackie Robinson, why did racial discrimination by major league teams begin to drop like a hot potato? It wasn't feelings of guilt by white owners, affirmative action or anti-discrimination laws. It turned out that there was a huge pool of black baseball talent in the Negro leagues. It became too costly for teams to allow the Dodgers to gain a monopoly on this talent. Black players won the National League's Most Valuable Player award for seven consecutive seasons. Had other teams not stepped in to hire black players, allowing the Dodgers to hire them, it might have given the Dodgers a virtual monopoly on world championships.…

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Kodak and the Post Office 1.9.12

2012-01-09 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

The news that Eastman Kodak is preparing to file for bankruptcy, after being the leading photographic company in the world for more than a hundred years, truly marks the end of an era. The skills required to use the cameras and chemicals required by the photography of the mid-19th century were far beyond those of most people -- until a man named George Eastman created a company called Kodak, which made cameras that ordinary people could use. It was Kodak's humble and affordable box Brownie that put photography on the map for millions of people, who just wanted to take simple pictures of family, friends and places they visited.…

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10 Questions To Find Our Next President (Part 2) 1.9.12

2012-01-09 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

Whom should we nominate to represent the GOP in a fight against President Barack Obama in the 2012 presidential election? I believe the name of the candidate that fills the majority of the answers in 10 particular questions deserves your vote. Last week, I discussed the first five questions. (If you haven't read those, please do so before proceeding.)…

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Family History Haunts Romney 1.9.12

2012-01-09 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

At the 757th Republican debate over the weekend, Newt Gingrich zinged Mitt Romney for attempting to portray his decision to forego a re-election race in Massachusetts as reluctance to become a lifetime politician. " . . . Can we drop a little bit of the pious baloney?" Gingrich taunted, observing that Romney's poll numbers were dropping in 2006, and he was eyeing a presidential run, which he did indeed make in 2008. True enough. Romney's explanation was transparently self-serving and contrived. That said, Romney cannot hope to compete in the phoniness league Newt Gingrich belongs to. At that level of play, candidates dare to suggest that they take huge retainers from Freddie Mac in order to offer advice "as a historian," and commit serial adultery because "partially driven by how passionately I felt about this country, that I worked far too hard and things happened in my life that were not appropriate."…

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This Week's MSM Bias Award Goes to George Stephanopoulos 1.9.12

2012-01-09 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

We've been dealing with liberal media bias for years, but George Stephanopoulos' performance in the Republican presidential debate Saturday night in New Hampshire was particularly egregious. In many of these MSM-moderated debates, liberal moderators have tried to stir up personal fights between candidates, which diverts our focus from more important issues and, before national television audiences, shifts attention far away from Barack Obama and his disastrous agenda.…

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Leftism Makes You Meaner 1.9.12

2012-01-09 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

Only a fool believes that all those with whom he differs are bad people. Moreover, just about all of us live the reality -- often within our own family -- of knowing good and loving people with whom we strongly differ on political, religious, social and economic issues. That said, I have come to believe that the more committed one is to leftism, the more likely one is to become meaner. Two examples in just the past week offer compelling evidence. Prominent left-wing commentators used the way in which Rick Santorum and his wife handled the death of one of their children to attack -- make that mock -- the former Pennsylvania senator.…

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The GOP Needs a Bolder Growth Message 1.6.12

2012-01-07 :: Lawrence Kudlow
Length: 5s

Message to my fellow conservatives: Please don't blame the mainstream media for the improvement in jobs, unemployment and economic growth. Reporters are not making this up. The economy is better. It's going to give President Obama a leg up on the election. GOP beware, and come to your senses. Take Friday's jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Non-farm payrolls gained 200,000, and the unemployment rate slipped to 8.5 percent from 8.7 percent. It may well be that a seasonal quirk added 42,000 messengers and couriers to the totals, but that will be lost in the headline reporting. It will be given back next month. It's inconsequential to the overall story. Likewise, a normal labor participation rate would yield much higher unemployment. But that's academic. Like any president, Obama will take credit for these economic gains. He's doing that right now. And he has a case to make: A year ago, the unemployment rate was 9.4 percent, and in 2011 it fell almost a percentage point. In the 12 months through December 2011, the economy produced 1.64 million new jobs, while in 2010, only 940,000 were created. On a monthly average basis, 137,000 new jobs per month were created in 2011, compared to only 78,000 a month in 2010. Things are getting better.…

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The Weakness That Saps the Strength of GOP Candidates 1.6.12

2012-01-07 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

A presidential campaign exposes candidates' strengths and weaknesses. The strengths they're eager to tell you about. So let's look at the weaknesses. Start with Rick Santorum, whose poll numbers in New Hampshire and South Carolina have been surging since (by last count) he lost the Iowa caucuses by the Chinese lucky number of 8 votes. Santorum's weakness is that he can't resist concentrating on peripheral issues. The prime example is his leadership in 2005 in getting the Senate summoned into voting for a law preventing the removal of life support for Terri Schiavo. Santorum's position was intellectually defensible (and shared by Democrats like Tom Harkin). But voters considered it weird to devote so much energy to a single unhappy legal case. I think this accounted more than anything else for Santorum's 59 percent to 41 percent defeat in Pennsylvania in 2006. In New Hampshire, Santorum was unable Thursday to resist Boston radio talk show host Michael Graham's invitation to characterize himself as a "Jesus guy." Again, he had an intellectually coherent rationale.…

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Obama's Motto 1.5.12

2012-01-06 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

President Obama is calling for dramatic defense cuts that could threaten our national survival while obstructing structural reforms to our entitlement programs that are essential for our national financial survival. It just doesn't get much worse than this. President George W. Bush attempted in good faith to reform Social Security, and Democrats savaged him. Rep. Paul Ryan proposed a comprehensive financial plan that would, as painlessly as possible, restore national fiscal sanity, and Obama and his Democrats have misrepresented the plan (saying it would end Medicare) and used class warfare and fear-mongering to kill it in the cradle. Indeed, Republicans have repeatedly submitted and passed comprehensive and detailed budget plans to restore our financial solvency, and Senate Democrats have blocked every one of them. Meanwhile, the Democratic Senate hasn't produced a budget in almost three years. Three years! It is undeniable, undebatable, irrefutable, inarguable and certain that the United States is spending at a level that will destroy it. It is equally indisputable that Democrats have shown no willingness to join Americans in tackling the problem. Every time you confront a liberal with these incontrovertible facts, his response is not: "You are simply wrong." It is, "Bush started this." Well, Bush did spend too much, but he was a piker compared with Obama. But it doesn't much matter who caused it anymore, does it? If your family is facing a serious problem, is your first instinct to blame the culprit -- other than to identify it for purposes of devising a solution -- or to address the problem?…

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Dinner With Terrorists 1.5.12

2012-01-06 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

If you were running the Illinois Humanities Council and a famous terrorist offered to help in your fundraising drive, what would you do? If you said, "slam down the phone" or something to that effect, it just shows how remote you are from the sensibilities of the Obama age. Because, in fact, when Bernardine Dohrn and Bill Ayers offered to auction "dinner for six" at their house, the IHC cheerfully accepted. Ayers and Dohrn were members of the Weather Underground in the 1960s and early '70s. They set off bombs at the New York police headquarters, the U.S. Capitol building and the Pentagon. In 1970, the group blew up the Park police station in San Francisco, killing Sgt. Brian V. McDonnell, a 45-year-old father of two and wounding eight others. The San Francisco Police Association has claimed, as recently as 2009, that "There are irrefutable and compelling reasons to believe that Bill Ayers and his wife Bernardine Dohrn ... are largely responsible for the bombing of Park Police Station." In a New York Times interview, published (ironically) on Sept. 11, 2001, Ayers was asked whether he had repented. He said, "I don't regret setting bombs. I feel we didn't do enough." Even now, he continued, he finds a "certain eloquence to bombs, a poetry and a pattern from a safe distance."…

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Obama's Super-Czar Is on the Loose 1.5.12

2012-01-06 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

Here is the operating motto of the Obama White House: "So let it be written, so let it be done!" Like Yul Brynner's Pharaoh Ramses character in Cecil B. DeMille's "The Ten Commandments," the demander in chief stands with arms akimbo issuing daily edicts to his constitution-subverting minions with an imperious wave of his hand. His entourage of insatiable usurpers never rests. Can't delude legislators into adopting a $1.5 billion Kabuki summer-jobs makework boondoggle? Create an unfunded program through executive fiat. Can't muster up a filibuster-proof majority for radical nominees? Czar-ify 'em. Can't get Congress to approve vast wild lands designations? Grab them under cover of a holiday lame-duck session. Can't get the illegal alien bailout DREAM Act passed on Capitol Hill? Executive-order it. "So let it be written, so let it be done!" In keeping with the dark and defiant habits of this administration, the new head of the half-billion-dollar Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was sworn in behind closed doors on Wednesday night. The nomination of former Democratic Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray to serve as Dodd-Frank regulatory enforcer had been soundly defeated in the Senate before Christmas. But as I reported last month, progressive zealots funded by billionaire George Soros goaded Obama to ignore the Senate's constitutionally grounded advice and consent role. At his left flank's urging, Obama vowed to follow in President Theodore Roosevelt's footsteps (TR recess-appointed 160 officials during a recess of less than one day) and install Cordray even though the Senate technically remained in pro forma session. Fresh from his Hawaii vacation, Obama returned to Washington and for once delivered on a promise.…

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Czar Barack 1.4.12

2012-01-05 :: Steve Chapman
Length: 5s

Back in 2007, when Barack Obama was running for president, a mildly surprising bit of news emerged: He and Dick Cheney were eighth cousins. Today, though, it appears that report was wrong. Judging from Obama's record in office, the two are practically brothers. As a candidate, Obama criticized the last administration for holding Americans as enemy combatants without trial. He faulted it for wiretapping citizens without a warrant. He rejected the Republican claim that the president has the "inherent power" to go to war without congressional consent. He depicted George W. Bush and his vice president as a menace to constitutional limits and personal freedom. But look at him now. Last week, Obama signed a bill letting him detain U.S. citizens in military custody without convicting them of anything -- not for a month or a year, but potentially forever. Obama pledges he will never use that power to hold an American. But Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., said the bill originally applied only to non-citizens. Citizens were included, he said, at the request of the White House. Even if Obama doesn't plan to use the power, it will be sitting on the shelf for Mitt Romney or Rick Santorum. Those who voted for Obama in 2008 expected something different. "The detention of American citizens, without access to counsel, fair procedure, or pursuant to judicial authorization, as enemy combatants is unconstitutional," he told The Boston Globe. His reversal brings to mind not only Cheney but another Republican. "Obama has eclipsed Nixon in the establishment of an imperial presidency," George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley told me. And Turley voted for Obama.…

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Romney's watchwords in Iowa: Divide and Conquer 1.4.12

2012-01-05 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

Elections are contests held during a moment in time between candidates who have records stretching back, often far back, into the past. So there is always a tension between the man (or woman) who is running and the moment. That tension is greater than usual when the contest is for the nomination of a political party dominated by a large number of newcomers to politics motivated by strong opposition to current policies. That was the case 40 years ago, when members of the peace movement, opposed to the Vietnam War, became the largest and most highly motivated part of the Democratic Party. And it is the case this year because the political newcomers referred to as the tea party have become the most highly motivated part of the Republican Party. They are opposed to the Obama Democrats' vast expansion of the size and scope of government and to any policy that abets it. The Republican candidates, who had their first real test in this week's Iowa caucuses, have long political records, going back to the 1970s in the case of Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul, and all of them (or all but one) have taken stands in tension with the principles of this cycle's Republican voters. Some have backed a mandate to buy health insurance -- a conservative proposal in the 1990s. At least one championed spending earmarks. Some are vulnerable to charges of crony capitalism. Some have disparaged or declined to support the Medicare reforms in House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan's budget package.…

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The Loneliness of the Non-mainstream Swimmer 1.3.12

2012-01-04 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

"I don't think Ron Paul represents the mainstream," says Mitt Romney. Newt Gingrich, another of the Texas congressman's opponents in the contest for the Republican presidential nomination, uses stronger terms, declaring, "Ron Paul's views are totally outside the mainstream of virtually every decent American." As the results in Iowa suggest, the "mainstream" to which Romney and Gingrich refer is not defined by voters; it is the range of opinion deemed acceptable by leaders of the two major political parties. The mainstream has brought us a national debt the size of the national economy, a bloated yet overextended military that has strayed far from its mission of defending the country, and a lawless executive branch that usurps legislative powers and violates civil liberties.…

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What Establishment? 1.3.12

2012-01-03 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Campaign season is not a time for truth. It's a time for the candidates, the press and the voters to tell themselves fables. The Democrats' fable this year is straightforward: President Obama has been a failure at reviving the economy because the hole dug by George W. Bush and the Republicans was so deep that it will require a second Obama term to fully reverse the damage. Further, the obstructionist Republicans in Congress are blocking the kind of "progressive" reforms, such as new taxes on the rich, that would solve our budget and deficit emergencies and boost economic growth.…

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Iowa-Bashing Snobs and Sore Losers 1.3.12

2012-01-03 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

The Iowa caucuses may not have much predictive value, but they did a wonderful job of unmasking both elitist whingers on the left and incompetent whiners on the right. As they do every presidential election cycle, progressives of pallor wore their indelible disdain for Middle America on their sleeves. Pale-faced University of Iowa journalism professor Stephen Bloom launched a 6,000-word jeremiad, littered with factual errors, against his home state's residents. The abridged version: Raaaaaaaacists! Hicks! Christians! Argggh!…

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Santorum: Big-Government Conservative 1.3.12

2012-01-03 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

Rick Santorum, like most Republican candidates, fashions himself the one true conservative running in 2012. If the thought of big, intrusive liberal government offends you, he might just be your man. And if you favor a big, intrusive Republican government, he's unquestionably your candidate. People are taking a look at Santorum. Important people. Even New York Times columnist David Brooks recently celebrated his working-class appeal, newfound viability and economic populism, noting that the former Pennsylvania senator's book "It Takes a Family" was a "broadside against Barry Goldwater-style conservatism" -- or, in other words, a rejection of that Neanderthal fealty for liberty and free markets that has yet to be put down. Santorum's book is crammed with an array of ideas for technocratic meddling; even the author acknowledges that some people "will reject" what he has to say "as a kind of 'Big Government' conservatism."…

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10 Questions To Find Our Next President (Part 1) 1.2.12

2012-01-02 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

Whom should we nominate to represent the GOP in a fight against President Barack Obama in the 2012 presidential election? I believe the name of the candidate that fills the majority of the answers in the following 10 questions (in no particular order of importance) deserves your vote. Based upon the GOP candidates' character and track records: 10) Who is most committed to follow and lead by the U.S. Constitution? It's one thing to take the presidential oath of office, but who has the strongest track record of citing and standing by the Constitution?…

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I Love Greed 1.2.12

2012-01-02 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

What human motivation gets the most wonderful things done? It's really a silly question, because the answer is so simple. It turns out that it's human greed that gets the most wonderful things done. When I say greed, I am not talking about fraud, theft, dishonesty, lobbying for special privileges from government or other forms of despicable behavior. I'm talking about people trying to get as much as they can for themselves. Let's look at it. This winter, Texas ranchers may have to fight the cold of night, perhaps blizzards, to run down, feed and care for stray cattle. They make the personal sacrifice of caring for their animals to ensure that New Yorkers can enjoy beef. Last summer, Idaho potato farmers toiled in blazing sun, in dust and dirt, and maybe being bitten by insects to ensure that New Yorkers had potatoes to go with their beef.…

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Republican Voters' Choices 1.2.12

2012-01-02 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

No one seems to be really happy with this year's field of Republican candidates for that party's presidential nomination -- except perhaps the Democrats. The sudden rise, and equally sudden fall, of a succession of Republican front-runners is just one sign of the dissatisfaction of the Republican voters with this field of candidates. In this, as in many other aspects of life, we can only make our choice among the options actually available. So Republican voters who want to be realistic need to understand that they are going to end up with qualms and nagging doubts about whomever they pick this time. Not all voters want to be realistic, of course. Some voters, whether Democrats, Republicans or independents, treat elections as occasions to vent their emotions, rather than as a process to pick someone into whose hands to place the fate of the nation.…

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The Wrong Kind of Minority 12.29.11

2011-12-29 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

The Washington Post proclaimed in a recent headline another historic "first" for the United States -- the first female usher-in-chief at the White House. Stop the presses! The accompanying story reveals that the nominee hails from Jamaica, so it's probably a two-fer. Oh, boy. The Post and other liberal organs are obsessed with firsts. The first female letter carrier to handle the Capitol Hill route will get a mention in the press. The first African-American anything is guaranteed at least a nod. You don't even have to be first to get "first" treatment. The last two Supreme Court nominees have been women, joining a court that had already seated two women (one retired). Nevertheless, the femininity of the candidates was cheerily chatted up. When Barack Obama became the first black nominee of a major party and then the elected president, dignified notice of an historical milestone would have been appropriate. But you know what happened -- the media went on an inebriated, extravagant first binge.…

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Coulter's Self-Fulfilling Prophecy 12.29.11

2011-12-29 :: Linda Chavez
Length: 5s

Conservative columnist Ann Coulter has some advice for GOP presidential hopefuls: Hang tough on illegal immigration. Coulter sees illegal immigration as one of the two signature issues of the Republican presidential campaign (the other being repeal of Obamacare). Coulter predicts that if the candidates fail to be sufficiently hard-line, they'll invite future political suicide: "... Capitulate on illegal immigration, and the entire country will have the electorate of California." Her column is not only lousy advice; it speaks volumes about how little she understands immigration policy.…

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Blind to Their Liberal Biases 12.29.11

2011-12-29 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

I think it's very difficult for any of us to be objective about any subject, especially something we care deeply about, but my objective observation is that liberals tend to be less aware of and less willing to admit their biases. We see this often, which I'll get to, but first, let me relate how this phenomenon most recently came to my attention.…

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The Year in Obama Scandals -- and Scandal Deniers 12.27.11

2011-12-27 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

With 2011 drawing to a close, it is time to account. As an early-and-often chronicler of Chicago-on-the-Potomac, I am amazed at the stubborn and clingy persistence of President Barack Obama's snowblowers in the media. See no scandal, hear no scandal, speak no scandal. Dartmouth College professor Brendan Nyhan asserted in May -- while Operation Fast and Furious subpoenas were flying on Capitol Hill -- that "one of the least remarked upon aspects of the Obama presidency has been the lack of scandals." Conveniently, he defines scandal as a "widespread elite perception of wrongdoing."…

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One-Man Intervention: Ron Paul Challenges His Party's Mindless Militarism 12.20.11

2011-12-21 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

Reporters routinely describe Ron Paul's foreign policy views as "isolationist" because he opposes the promiscuous use of military force. This is like calling him a recluse because he tries to avoid fistfights. The implicit assumption that violence is the only way to interact with the world reflects the oddly circumscribed nature of foreign policy debates in mainstream American politics. It shows why Paul's perspective is desperately needed in the campaign for the Republican presidential nomination.…

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Michelle Obama's Unsavory School Lunch Flop 12.20.11

2011-12-21 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

The road to gastric hell is paved with first lady Michelle Obama's Nanny State intentions. Don't take my word for it. School kids in Los Angeles have blown the whistle on the east wing chef-in-chief's healthy lunch diktats. Get your Pepto Bismol ready. The taste of government waste is indigestion-inducing. According to a weekend report by the Los Angeles Times, the city's "trailblazing introduction of healthful school lunches has been a flop." In response to the public hectoring and financial inducement of Mrs. Obama's federally subsidized anti-obesity campaign, the district dropped chicken nuggets, corn dogs and flavored milk from the menu for "beef jambalaya, vegetable curry, pad Thai, lentil and brown rice cutlets, and quinoa and black-eyed pea salads."…

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Obama and Holder Should Put the Race Card back in the Deck 12.19.11

2011-12-19 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

President Obama led us to believe that he would be a post-racial president who would bring the races together, but it's gotten to where you can't criticize this most leftist administration in American history without someone accusing you of racism. The most recent example involves criticism of Attorney General Eric Holder over Fast and Furious, an operation conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, which was overseen by the Justice Department. It involved the indirect sale of weapons to Mexican drug cartels, which resulted in some 300 killings in Mexico, including the murder of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry. Throughout, despite having received detailed memos from DOJ officials about it, Holder has denied he was aware of it.…

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Why Thomas Friedman Abetted Anti-Semitism 12.19.11

2011-12-19 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

After a lifetime of studying the left, I have concluded that leftism is a form of moral poison. It causes otherwise decent and kind people who take it into their systems to say and/or do cruel and sometimes evil things. While not specifically about the left, a major new scholarly book, "Pathological Altruism" (Oxford University Press), explores this phenomenon of people wanting to do good things yet ending up doing bad. It applies to The New York Times foreign affairs columnist Thomas L. Friedman, who has a deep altruistic urge to bring peace to the Middle East. But because he sees the world through the liberal/left prism, he says morally reprehensible things -- statements that individuals associated with hate-filled, non-altruistic groups and ideologies would make.…

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That Ol' Time Religion 12.19.11

2011-12-19 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

President Obama spoke at the annual meeting of the Union for Reform Judaism last week, and he gave the attendees that ol' time religion -- liberalism. Not surprisingly, since Reform Judaism is, in Richard Brookhiser's timeless phrase, "the Democratic Party with holidays" -- it was well-received. While the audience in the hall purred appreciatively at the president's invocation of the usual liberal bromides, Obama's claims on the subject of his administration's support of Israel -- at least to those not blinkered by partisanship -- are nothing short of jaw dropping. "I am proud to say," he told the group, "that no U.S. administration has done more in support of Israel's security than ours. None. Don't let anybody else tell you otherwise. It is a fact." No, it's an assertion, and it scarcely passes the laugh test.…

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China Trade: Myths vs. Reality 12.19.11

2011-12-19 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

Republicans and Democrats, liberals as well as conservatives, have bought into anti-Chinese trade demagoguery. Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi suggested that tariffs against China are a "key part of our 'Make It in America' agenda." During his 2010 campaign, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., called his tea party-backed Republican challenger, Sharron Angle, "a foreign worker's best friend." In a recent news conference, President Barack Obama gave his support to the anti-China campaign, declaring that China "has been very aggressive in gaming the trading system to its advantage," adding that "we can and should take action against countries that are keeping their currencies undervalued ... (and) that, above all, means China." Republican 2012 presidential candidates have jumped on the anti-China bandwagon. Mitt Romney wrote: "If I am fortunate enough to be elected president, I will work to fundamentally alter our economic relationship with China. ... I will begin on Day One by designating China as the currency manipulator it is." Former Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa., was even more challenging, saying, "I want to go to war with China."…

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The Past and the Present 12.19.11

2011-12-19 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

If Newt Gingrich were being nominated for sainthood, many of us would vote very differently from the way we would vote if he were being nominated for a political office. What the media call Gingrich's "baggage" concerns largely his personal life and the fact that he made a lot of money running a consulting firm after he left Congress. This kind of stuff makes lots of talking points that we will no doubt hear, again and again, over the next weeks and months.…

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Feds' War on Religion (Part 1 of 2) 12.19.11

2011-12-19 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

Anyone who knows me knows that for my whole life, I've been a huge supporter of our U.S. military personnel, whom I congratulate about their victory in Iraq. But when our president and officials in the U.S. Department of Defense exchange a war abroad for a religious war at home, can't we see that something else is seriously awry in this administration? It's one thing to watch "merry Christmas" be omitted from signs in your favorite department store but quite another to see Bibles withheld from wounded warriors at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. It's true! On Dec. 2, the Family Research Council reported that it had discovered a memo released in September at the esteemed military hospital, in which Navy officials announced that "no religious items (including Bibles, reading material, and/or artifacts) are allowed to be given away or used during a visit."…

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A Democrat Reaches Across the Aisle on Medicare 12.16.11

2011-12-16 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

It's highly unusual in a presidential debate for two Republican candidates -- the two leading in current national polls -- to heap praise on a liberal Democratic senator. But in the Fox News debate in Sioux City, Iowa, Thursday night, both Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney had very good words to say for Oregon's Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden. The subject was the Medicare reform plan put forward in a Wall Street Journal opinion article that morning by Wyden and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan. "Today is a big day for the country," Romney said. It was "an enormous achievement" for Ryan and Wyden, people on opposite sides of the aisle, to come together. Gingrich, harshly criticized last May for calling Ryan's earlier Medicare plan "right-wing social engineering," went out of his way to say that Romney had produced "a very good plan" for Medicare and that it was "brave" for Wyden to join Ryan in their bipartisan plan.…

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Iraq -- Victory or Defeat? 12.15.11

2011-12-16 :: Oliver North
Length: 5s

They are coming home. For the first time since March 19, 2003, there are no U.S. combat or combat support troops in Iraq. There is still a contingent of U.S. Marines guarding the biggest American embassy in the world and the largest military attache's office at any diplomatic mission. But there is no doubt in anyone's mind -- ally or enemy -- that the war in Iraq is over. The only uncertainty now: Who won? Short answer: America's soldiers, sailors, airmen, guardsmen and Marines -- and the American people whose sons and daughters served in Iraq. Though our commander in chief cannot utter the word "victory," it is. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta -- in Baghdad for a ceremonial "casing of the colors" for U.S. Forces-Iraq -- came close when he said of all who served during eight years and eight months of war: "You came to this 'Land Between the Rivers' again and again and again. You did not know whether you'd return to your loved ones. ... Your sacrifice has helped the Iraqi people to cast tyranny aside and to offer hope for prosperity and peace to this country's future generations."…

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Keystone Blue-Collar Blues 12.15.11

2011-12-16 :: Lawrence Kudlow
Length: 5s

The payroll-tax-cut debate is not really about the payroll tax, which is a very weak-kneed economic stimulant and a lackluster job creator because of its temporary nature. Without permanent incentives at lower tax rates, these rebates don't do anything for growth and jobs. Instead, the key to understanding the payroll-tax debate is to grasp President Barack Obama's leftist vision of taxing successful earners (the millionaire surtax) and his obsession with clean energy at the expense of fossil fuels. These are ideological positions. They support the Obama vision of class warfare and his attachment to radical environmentalism.…

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Nancy Pelosi, Down and Dirty 12.15.11

2011-12-16 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

As a rueful Queen Elizabeth once said of a particularly rough year for the royal family, 2011 is "not a year on which" Queen Nancy Pelosi "shall look back with undiluted pleasure." The former House Speaker relinquished her crown -- er, gavel -- in January. It's been an epic downhill ski crash ever since. Most recently, Pelosi faced questions from liberal "60 Minutes" and conservative investigative author Peter Schweitzer about a 5,000-share Visa stock purchase she made with her husband as the House was considering credit card regulations. She made a "killing" off the highly sought-after initial public offering. The stock holdings more than doubled in a few weeks; the credit card regulations were put on ice somewhere in the back of Pelosi's fridge. While she makes grand gestures toward banning congressional insider trading, San Fran Nan's financial conflicts of interest are once again on display. This week, Reuters columnist Dan Indiviglio pointed to pending House legislation titled the "New Alternative Transportation to Give Americans Solutions Act of 2011," which is stuffed with natural gas vehicle subsidies: $9 billion worth, to be precise. These very subsidies are championed by Texas billionaire and failed wind farm evangelist T. Boone Pickens. He just happens to be a major stockholder in the company that would benefit from the bill: Clean Energy Fuels.…

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About Those Self-Evident Truths 12.15.11

2011-12-16 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

"We hold these Truths to be self-evident..." What truths? What has happened to our passion for liberty? I am concerned that we conservatives, instead of making our case as fearless champions of liberty, are too often on the defensive, preoccupied with trying to prove we aren't the demons the left says we are. In the GOP primary contest, you'll hear one candidate scolding the others for lacking compassion, another demagoguing a rival for advocating essential entitlement reform, and another shaming an opponent for being too wealthy. Shouldn't our side do a better job of proudly proclaiming our case for what we believe in rather than have our tails tucked between our legs, apologizing for conservatism and all too often neglecting our first principles? Because we face an existential threat to the nation in our exploding discretionary and entitlement spending, we rightly aim our rhetoric against the deficits and the debt. That's critically important, but in the process, do we forget to explain that we favor smaller government also as a matter of principle? Do we make the case that we oppose a bigger and more intrusive government because a) it is incompatible with what we stand for -- robust political liberty -- and b) other than metastasizing and swallowing up the private sector and our individual liberties, government does only a few things well? Likewise, do we connect the dots between our confiscatory tax policies and the diminution of our liberties, demonstrating a nexus between oppressive taxes and serfdom? Do we protest that we are already overtaxed and that an onerous tax system, enforced by a menacing federal agency, devours our political liberty?…

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NTSB: the Banning Nannies 12.15.11

2011-12-16 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

A few months ago, tooling along in my brand new Honda (aka "cute car"), I came to a stop at a red light. On my right, a police cruiser with lights flashing was investigating a fender bender. A total of three cars, the two that were in the accident plus the police car, were off on the shoulder. I was waiting for the light to change when -- bam -- someone crashed into me from behind. One of the police officers instructed us to pull over to the side of the road near the other two cars. "Everybody OK?" My husband and I nodded. "I saw the whole thing," the officer said. "So this won't take long." As we were filling out paper work and exchanging insurance information (the other driver was mortified and cooperative), yet another car rear-ended a third car waiting at the red light. The road was so strewn with red and white glass that it looked like a holiday display. When my husband and I expressed amazement at the three crashes within the space of about eight minutes, the officer shrugged. "It happens all the time." The cause of the second two accidents (I don't know what caused the first.): "distracted driving." Both drivers were "rubbernecking" instead of paying attention to the road in front of them. By the logic that the National Transportation Safety Board applied this week in its recommendation to ban all cell phone use by drivers, perhaps we should also ban police cars? The accident that led to the NTSBs sweeping recommendation was similar to the one I just described, except that it was more serious. In Gray Summit, Mo., in 2010, a distracted driver crashed into a truck. Then, in an accordion pattern, two school busses crashed into him. Two people were killed and 35 injured.…

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Tebow Critics Put Their Own Bigotry on Display 12.15.11

2011-12-16 :: Linda Chavez
Length: 5s

Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow has been a controversial sports figure ever since he agreed to do an ad for the conservative organization Focus on the Family; the spot aired during the 2010 Super Bowl. Feminists and other groups, who feared the ad would be overtly pro-life and anti-abortion, tried to keep it from running. In the end, the message turned out to be pretty innocuous, and those who tried to censor it looked downright silly. Now Tebow is once again a target for illiberals who find his evangelical Christianity somehow threatening and offensive. The latest episode involves a recent column for The Jewish Week that bashed Tebow for symbolizing intolerance. But it was the writer, Connecticut Rabbi Joshua Hammerman, who put his own astonishing bigotry on display. Hammerman titled his piece "My Tebow Problem," and indeed it is Hammerman's problem -- not Tebow's. While claiming to want to root for Tebow, who has pulled off an unprecedented string of amazing consecutive fourth-quarter comebacks for his underdog team this season, Hammerman made the following prediction: "If Tebow wins the Super Bowl, against all odds, it will buoy his faithful, and emboldened faithful can do insane things, like burning mosques, bashing gays and indiscriminately banishing immigrants. While America has become more inclusive since Jerry Falwell's first political forays, a Tebow triumph could set those efforts back considerably." Really?…

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Vladimir Putin's Divided Russia 12.13.11

2011-12-15 :: Steve Chapman
Length: 5s

Moscow is not a city of ghosts, but on Saturday, tens of thousands of figures were seen marching in the Russian capital chanting, "We exist! We exist!" That might seem like an exercise in the obvious. But the crowd thought a reminder was in order for Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who has generally regarded his critics as though they were invisible. He can see them now. In last week's parliamentary election, his United Russia Party suffered a humiliation, losing 77 of its 315 seats and getting less than a majority of all votes -- down from 64 percent four years ago. It's embarrassing enough to do poorly in an honest election. Putin's party managed to crater despite vigorous measures to rig the vote. In the province of Chechnya, United Russia somehow garnered 99 percent at the polls. In the city of Rostov-on-Don, state TV reported its share of the vote at 146 percent. Putin and his sidekick, President Dmitry Medvedev, defended the integrity of the election, but they were a tiny chorus. Opposition groups posted video of ballot-stuffing and other tactics that would make a Chicago precinct captain smile. One man said he was paid to cast 45 ballots for United Russia. A Russian election watchdog group, Golos, said United Russia "achieved the majority mandate by falsification." International observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe found "frequent procedural violations and instances of apparent manipulation."…

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Republicans: Racist, Sexist, Homophobic -- and Elitist 12.13.11

2011-12-15 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

The next best thing to calling a Republican "racist," "sexist," "homophobic," or "Uncle Tom" (where appropriate) is to call him "out of touch." Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney is the latest wealthy Republican to be called "out of touch." The proof? Why, he offered to bet rival Texas Gov. Rick Perry. The amount offered was -- gasp -- $10,000! This, of course, makes him another born-on-third-base-and-thought-he-hit-a-triple Republican. The Democratic National Committee pounced and immediately put out a video: "Mitt Romney: Simply Out of Touch -- Ten Thousand Times Over." But which "elite, out-of-touch politician" considers a $172,200 annual salary "relatively modest" -- Republican presidential hopeful Romney or President Barack Obama? Answer: Obama. Whose $300K-per-year hospital-executive wife traveled to working-class Zanesville, Ohio, and complained about the high cost of her daughters' summer camp, piano and dance lessons? Answer: Obama's. The then-U.S. senator was making $170K. The 2005-2009 median income in Zanesville: $28,854, almost $13,000 less than the national median. Romney fits this role perfectly. Son of a former American Motors CEO and Michigan governor, Romney made a bundle buying and selling businesses. Pretty blond wife. Pretty kids. Every hair in place. What's not to hate? Never mind that there are more multimillionaire Democrat senators than multimillionaire Republican senators. Never mind that the average contribution to the DNC is larger than the average contribution to the RNC.…

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Romney Bets on Old Rules as Newt Moves Under Radar 12.13.11

2011-12-15 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

"We're not going to lose in New Hampshire." So says Mitt Romney's state coordinator, Jason McBride. Stuart Stevens, the Romney campaign's TV ad-maker, expresses similar confidence. Asked if Romney might finish second in New Hampshire, his answer is an unhesitating "no." Whether that confidence is well founded may determine the fate of the candidate who has been the on-and-off frontrunner in the race for the Republican presidential nomination. There are four contests in January -- the Iowa caucuses, and then the primaries in New Hampshire, South Carolina and Florida. Romney currently trails Newt Gingrich in polls in three of the four. Only in the Granite State does he cling to the lead he has held in every poll there since April 2010. If New Hampshire follows the pattern of past primaries, Romney should be headed for a win. In 2008, he only narrowly lost the state, 37 percent to 32 percent, to John McCain. He's been running ahead of that 32 percent in almost all polls this cycle. He has been building an organization replete with field directors and voter-identification efforts since last May. An absentee ballot drive is getting underway.…

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If You're Looking for a Profligate Authoritarian, Gingrich Is Your Man 12.13.11

2011-12-13 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

The first time Newt Gingrich disgusted me was in 1995, when the freshly installed speaker of the House proposed the death penalty for drug smugglers. Fifteen years later, I had a similar response when Gingrich demanded government action to stop Muslims from building a mosque near the site of the World Trade Center. From the perspective of someone who wants to minimize the role of government in every aspect of our lives, Gingrich is bad in the ways conservatives tend to be bad -- and then some. At the same time, he is generally not good in the ways conservatives tend to be good, which makes me wonder why anyone would prefer him to Mitt Romney as a presidential candidate.…

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Port Whine: Big Labor's Occu-Punks 12.13.11

2011-12-13 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

Scruffy progressive protesters locked themselves together across railroad tracks, blocked traffic and shouted profanities at police on Tuesday in a coordinated "West Coast Port Shutdown." Truckers lost wages. Shippers lost business. This is what the Occupy Wall Street movement calls "victory." Aging Big Labor bosses toasted one another from the sidelines as they declared the "rebirth of the labor movement." What's really going on? It's an old-school power grab by a decrepit union wrapped in self-deluded social media do-goodism.…

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Bain Over Newt Any Day 12.13.11

2011-12-13 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

This week, Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney called on newly minted front-runner and noted historian Newt Gingrich to return the estimated $1.6 million he made providing "strategic advice" to Freddie Mac, the quasi-governmental agency that has done the hard work of making "toxic home mortgages" a forever feature of our national portfolio. To this, Newt, the great American theorist, unsheathed his trademark intellect and offered a completely irrelevant yet vaguely smart-sounding retort: "If Gov. Romney would give back all the money he's earned from bankrupting companies and laying off employees over the years at Bain, then I would be glad to listen to him. But I bet you $10, not $10,000, that he won't take the offer."…

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Obama's Campaign Strategy 12.13.11

2011-12-13 :: Dick Morris
Length: 5s

In his "60 Minutes" interview, President Obama offered a keen insight into his 2012 re-election strategy. It takes some decoding, but his underlying strategic goals emerge. He said: "The question next year is going to be -- and then this is how a democracy is supposed to work -- do they see a more compelling vision coming out from the other side? Do they think that cutting taxes further, including on the wealthy, cutting taxes on corporations, of gutting regulations, do we think that that is going to be somehow more successful? And if the American people think that that's a recipe for success and a majority are persuaded by that, then I'm going to lose."…

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Newt's Past and Future Leadership 12.13.11

2011-12-13 :: Tony Blankley
Length: 5s

Almost all political commentators agree on one thing. The Republican presidential campaign is unlike any we have experienced. It is not a campaign of steady trends and continuities, but rather of emotional reversals and discontinuities. Perhaps this is so because the last 3 to 4 years have been a shocking time of discontinuities and reversals for America. Really, America has been bewildered, shocked and disoriented since Sept. 11, 2001. The economic collapse and the unprecedentedly statist policies of the last three years have just compounded the anxiety. The rise of China, the fall of Europe and the chaos in the Middle East have been startling in their swiftness -- and the lack of American leadership as these dramatic events unfold is sending a shudder throughout the world. We don't know what to make of events. We have not been convinced that either President George W. Bush or incumbent President Obama have had a clue about how to make things right.…

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Economic Fairness 12.12.11

2011-12-12 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

The most prevalent theme in President Barack Obama's Dec. 6 Osawatomie, Kan., speech was the need for greater "fairness." In fact, though the president never defined the term fair(ness), he used it 15 times. Explaining his new hero, Teddy Roosevelt, Obama said: "But Roosevelt also knew that the free market has never been a free license to take whatever you can from whomever you can. He understood the free market only works when there are rules of the road that ensure competition is fair and open and honest." What's fair competition is somewhat subjective, but let me suggest a few examples of what's clearly unfair. Say a person wants to become a taxi owner. He has a driver's license, a car and accident liability insurance. Is it fair that in New York City, he has to first purchase a taxi license (medallion) that as of October sold for $1 million? Taxi licenses in Chicago go for $56,000. In Boston, they are $285,000, and in Philadelphia, they run $75,000. Is that fair competition?…

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GOP Creating Fuel for Obama 12.12.11

2011-12-12 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

Casey Stengel, a baseball legend who played on five teams and managed four, said: "It's easy to get good players. Getting them to play together, that's the hard part." What's true in sports is definitely true in politics -- even more so. Many say that 'tis the season for GOP rivalry, but when does inference turn to infighting? When does public debate abandon solidarity? And when does friendly bantering turn into friendly fire that is fuel for our foes?…

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The Volt Administration 12.12.11

2011-12-12 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

The headline reads like a piece from the Onion: "U.S. Navy Paying $15/Gallon for Green Fuel." But it's real enough. It seems that, fresh from its success with Solyndra, the Obama administration is slated to spend $12 million to buy a biofuel/gasoline blend that runs $15 a gallon to power a portion of the Navy's fleet in a demonstration project. "We are doing this for one simple reason," explained Navy Secretary Ray Mabus, "It makes us better war fighters. Our use of fossil fuels is a very real threat to our national security and to the U.S. Navy's ability to protect America and project power overseas."…

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Gridlock to the Rescue? 12.12.11

2011-12-12 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

Washington gridlock may turn out to be the salvation of the Obama administration. Not only does gridlock allow the president to blame Republicans for not solving the financial crisis that his own runaway spending created, the inability to carry out as much government intervention in the economy as when the Democrats controlled both Houses of Congress means that the market can now recover on its own to some visible extent before the next election. Such a recovery would of course be credited as a success of the Obama administration's policies. With this theme being echoed throughout the pro-Obama media, enough voters might be sufficiently impressed to give the president a second term.…

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Obama's '60 Minutes' Interview Gives Grading on a Curve New Meaning 12.12.11

2011-12-12 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

The most disturbing aspect of President Obama's "60 Minutes" interview is how sincere he sounded when misrepresenting his record. I'm not sure whether I would prefer that he be lying or self-deluded, but there's plenty of each to go around. Obama is a left-wing ideologue, a true believer, who is convinced that his agenda is mandated by a superior moral imperative (from who knows where) and that it must be advanced irrespective of the consequences, because no matter how bad they might be, they would have been worse without his agenda.…

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Adultery, Character and Politics -- My Responses 12.12.11

2011-12-12 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

Because the issue is so important, I have decided to respond to critics of my last column on adultery, politics and character. As any reader of my columns or books knows, I am a religious conservative, and my primary concern is morality. By morality, I mean issues of good and evil. I am also concerned with the issue of sin, but sin and evil are not identical. All evil is sin, but not all sins are evil. For example, religious people regard saying the word 'God' for no religious purpose ("taking God's name in vain") as sinful. But to regard saying, for example, "God damn it, I stubbed my toe," as evil is to trivialize evil.…

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Newt the Supply-Side Sizzler 12.8.11

2011-12-09 :: Lawrence Kudlow
Length: 5s

Say what you will about former Speaker Newt Gingrich. His philosophy, his policy proposals, his track record, his campaign and all the rest. But the one thing you have to acknowledge about Gingrich is that he's a sizzler. He has a way with words. And he's as good a communicator as anyone in modern politics. In my CNBC interview with Gingrich this week, he slammed President Obama's tax-the-rich, class-warfare attack on banks and businesspeople. He hammered Obama, calling him a hard-left radical who is opposed to free enterprise, capitalism and "virtually everything which made America great." It was a brutal, frontal, hard-hitting attack on the president. He called Obama "the candidate of food stamps, the finest food-stamp president in American history." He said, "I want to get equality by bringing people up. (Obama) wants to get equality by bringing people down." He said, "I want to be the guy who says, 'I want to help every American have a better future.' (Obama) wants to make sure that he levels Americans down so we all have an equally mediocre future."…

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Holder, Blago, Richardson: Triangle of Sleaze 12.8.11

2011-12-09 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

It was a rough week for the corruptocracy. White House officials better ho-ho-hold on tight because the sleigh ride isn't going to get any smoother. On Wednesday, disgraced former Gov. Rod Blagojevich, D-Ill., received a 14-year prison sentence for scheming to sell President Barack Obama's Senate office, along with several other pay-for-play schemes. Blago played the distressed daddy for the federal judge, invoking his young daughters and wife (who held her notoriously foul tongue in check) to bemoan how his "life is in ruins." How far Blago's fallen from the glory days of 2008, when he was gloating at the prospect of naming a candidate to fill then-President-elect Obama's seat. "I've got this thing, and it's f**king golden," he crowed. All that glitters now, though, are the paparazzi flash bulbs that Blago faces on his perp walks. Earlier this week, Bill Richardson, former Democratic governor of New Mexico, disgraced former presidential candidate and failed Obama Commerce Secretary nominee, faced new reports of a federal grand jury into his possible violations of campaign finance laws. The funny-money business is tied to an alleged mistress payoff a la disgraced former presidential candidate and Sen. John Edwards, D-N.C.…

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Obama Default Mode: Blame Israel 12.8.11

2011-12-09 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

After a two-hour meeting in Cairo, Khaled Mashaal, unelected leader of Hamas, and Mahmoud Abbas, unelected leader of the Palestinian Authority, were all smiles. "We want to assure our people and the Arab and Islamic world that we have turned a major new and real page in partnership on everything to do with the Palestinian nation," Mashaal announced. "There are no more differences between us now," agreed Abbas. In other words, the "moderate" Abbas is now a full partner with the leader of an organization whose charter is committed not just to the destruction of Israel but also to the elimination of all Jews everywhere. This is the same Abbas who forfeited whatever slim claim he held to a moderate status by declining to accept Israel as a Jewish state, refusing to engage in direct negotiations with Israel (as recently as last week chief Palestinian Authority negotiator Saeb Erekat declined a Quartet request to sit down with the Israelis), and flouting the Oslo Accords by going to the United Nations to demand recognition. Now, he is formally partnered with a genocidal, Islamist organization. But the Obama administration thinks Israel is the problem. Meanwhile, in Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood won 40 percent of the vote in parliamentary elections, while another 25 percent went to Salafi forces. The Salafis regard the Muslim Brotherhood as squishes. Sheik Abdel Moneim el-Shahat, leader of the Salafis, is scornful of the Muslim Brotherhood for talking about citizenship and freedom outside the strictures of Islamic law. El-Shahat is not so broad-minded. "I want to say: citizenship restricted by Islamic Shariah, freedom restricted by Islamic Shariah, equality restricted by Islamic Shariah." So two-thirds of the Egyptian electorate support candidates who will find Hamas utterly congenial. But the Obama administration is dismayed by Israel.…

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Obama Is No Teddy Roosevelt 12.8.11

2011-12-09 :: Linda Chavez
Length: 5s

Barack Obama channeled Teddy Roosevelt this week in a speech in Osawatomie, Kan. Supporters are calling it the most significant economic speech of his administration. But critics rightly point out that the Teddy Roosevelt whom Obama invoked was not the beloved 26th president and standard-bearer of the GOP. Instead, it was the radicalized third-party candidate seeking a third term and the man whose progressivism was a precursor to the rise of big government in the later 20th century. What's more, President Obama's speech was so full of reckless accusations and misinformation that The Washington Post's Fact Checker blog gave it three Pinocchios, signifying "significant factual errors." President Obama has a history of comparing himself to American giants -- from Abraham Lincoln to Ronald Reagan. So it's no surprise that he would choose to give his speech in the same town as Teddy Roosevelt's 1910 address. But whenever Obama invokes past heroes, he ends up looking smaller. And this week's speech was a prime example.…

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In Kansas, Obama Emulates Dorothy: 'Lions and Tigers and Capitalists! Oh, My!' 12.8.11

2011-12-09 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

President Obama's much-ballyhooed speech in Osawatomie, Kan., was his best effort to put a happy face on class warfare. Though some were elated, fantasizing that he might be getting his messianic mojo back, even his reliable cheerleaders recognize there's no substance beneath the hot air rising. Liberals get all dewy-eyed when Obama reverts to idealistic tones, as they are saps for perfect-world scenarios that never materialize. They love it when he co-opts history in service to their cause. So he traveled to Kansas seeking to identify with Teddy Roosevelt, the icon of rugged individualism, to lambast the evils of rugged individualism. Obama misdiagnosed the problems facing America, distorted the historical record, set up straw men to excoriate, and conflated history and principles, all to demonize his opponents, divert scrutiny from his record, and build support for his cause. He offered no concrete solutions, only low-minded platitudes, because everything he's tried has failed and he has nothing left to try. He views the national economy as a zero-sum game in which the success of some means the misery of others. He sees unequal distribution of income and wealth as a pervasive evil -- an evil caused by the most sinister of boogeymen: unregulated capitalism.…

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Obama Pursues Rich and Poor, Not White Working Class 12.7.11

2011-12-08 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

Has Barack Obama's Democratic Party given up on winning the votes of the white working class? Thomas Edsall, the longtime Washington Post reporter now with The Huffington Post, thinks so. Surveying the plans of Democratic strategists, Edsall wrote in The New York Times on Nov. 28 that "all pretense of trying to win a majority of the white working class has been effectively jettisoned." Of course, an Obama campaign spokesman issued a prompt denial. No campaign wants any groups of voters to know that it has written them off. But Edsall is plainly on to something. Obama campaign strategists have made it known that they are concentrating on states like Colorado and Virginia -- states with high percentages of college educated voters, young voters and minorities. Obama carried both these states in 2008, even though Republican presidential candidates had carried Virginia in every election and Colorado in all but one election between 1964 and 2004. Not all Democrats accept the Colorado/Virginia strategy. William Galston, a top domestic aide in the Clinton White House, has argued that the Obama campaign should concentrate on states like Ohio, with an older and more blue-collar population. Only one Democrat in the last century has won the presidency without carrying Ohio, Galston points out. If John Kerry had run just 2 points stronger there in 2004, he would have been elected president. And Ohio's demographics look a lot like those in Pennsylvania, which Obama carried by 10 points in 2004 but where he is now running behind in the polls.…

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Cain: Enter as a Problem Solver, Exit as a Victicrat 12.7.11

2011-12-08 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

Herman Cain is out. He "suspended" his campaign for the Republican nomination for president this week after a fifth woman made allegations against him. This time, an Atlanta woman claims she had a 13-year-long affair with the former CEO. As with the four other women who made allegations of sexual harassment -- two still unidentified -- Cain denies ever having done "anything inappropriate." Then why quit the race? Quitting means five unmitigated liars -- not just unmitigated liars but, as Cain suggests, coordinated liars -- ran him out of Dodge. If the man who would be commander in chief abandons ship because a handful of liars said awful, unprovable things about him, the nation is better off without him trying to lead it. Cain, after all, marketed himself as a genial but tough, no-nonsense, bottom-line guy who overcame hardship unimaginable by most Americans. He was born and raised "po,'" -- too "po'" to be poor -- and promoted himself as a leader who defied the odds and fixed two failing businesses.…

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Barack Obama, Class Warrior? 12.7.11

2011-12-08 :: Steve Chapman
Length: 5s

Someday, when today's adults are old and gray, their grandchildren will sit down and ask, "What did you do in the class war?" You may not have noticed, but it seems we are in the midst of one. On this point, Republican candidates and officeholders are in agreement. Newt Gingrich accuses President Barack Obama of advocating "class warfare and bureaucratic socialism." Mitt Romney says he is trying "to divide America." Rick Santorum? "Class warfare." Michele Bachmann? Ditto. Now a hedge-fund manager has become a Fox News hero for writing the president a letter depicting him as the evil twin of Fidel Castro. Obama, charges Leon Cooperman of Omega Advisors, is engaging in "desperate demagoguery," treating the rich as a "selfish and unfeeling lot who must be subjugated by the force of the state," employing a strategy "that never ends well for anyone but totalitarians and anarchists." Maybe cold showers are in order. Obama, it's true, has proposed a small increase in tax rates on the wealthy, but nothing draconian by historical standards. His purportedly populous speech Tuesday in Osawatomie, Kan., had his usual quota of dubious data, blame for his predecessor and economic folly. Incendiary, however, it was not. His stress was not on punishing the rich or getting revenge on those who caused the financial crisis. It was about enlarging the middle class. His rhetoric consisted of lines like, "We're greater together than we are on our own" and "I believe that this country succeeds when everyone gets a fair shot."…

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Ixnay on Cordray: Not Another Obama Czar 12.6.11

2011-12-07 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

Wrapping himself in the mantle of Theodore Roosevelt's "National Greatness" agenda, President Obama urged the nation to stand strong and unite behind ... his umpteenth regulatory czar. Nothing symbolizes American strength and vigor more than another unaccountable Washington bureaucrat. If Richard Cordray, the stalled White House nominee to enforce the Dodd-Frank financial bureaucracy, is not approved, the wheedler-in-chief warned in Osawatomie, Kan.: "Every day we go without a consumer watchdog in place is another day when a student or a senior citizen or member of our Armed Forces could be tricked into a loan they can't afford -- something that happens all the time."…

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Obama vs. Capitalism 12.6.11

2011-12-07 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

In Teddy Roosevelt's era, President Barack Obama explained to the nation this week, "some people thought massive inequality and exploitation was just the price of progress. ... But Roosevelt also knew that the free market has never been a free license to take whatever you want from whoever you can." And he's right. Even today there are people who believe they should have free license to take whatever they want from whomever they can. They're called Democrats.…

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Detention Pretension 12.6.11

2011-12-07 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

Do you see a problem with a law that authorizes indefinite military detention of anyone the president identifies as an enemy of the state? For President Obama, the problem is clear: The law does not give him enough discretion. Obama has threatened to veto the National Defense Authorization Act if the final version includes a provision approved by the Senate last week that requires military detention of some terrorism suspects. Obama, like his predecessor, wants the leeway to keep them in civilian custody and maybe even give them a trial, if he so chooses. Those of us who are not the president are apt to be more concerned about the unchecked power the bill gives him to lock us up and throw away the key. Defenders of the bill's detention provisions say they merely codify powers granted by the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) that Congress approved after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. But unlike the AUMF, Section 1031 of the National Defense Authorization Act explicitly "affirms" the legality of military detention "without trial." Furthermore, it says such treatment is permitted not only for "a person who planned, authorized, committed or aided the terrorist attacks" or who "harbored those responsible" (language that echoes the AUMF), but also for anyone who joins or supports al-Qaida, the Taliban or "associated forces" -- a much wider net.…

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Free To Die? 12.5.11

2011-12-05 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman, in his New York Times column titled "Free to Die" (9/15/2011), pointed out that back in 1980, his late fellow Nobel laureate Milton Friedman lent his voice to the nation's shift to the political right in his famous 10-part TV series, "Free To Choose." Nowadays, Krugman says, "'free to choose' has become 'free to die.'" He was referring to a GOP presidential debate in which Rep. Ron Paul was asked what should be done if a 30-year-old man who chose not to purchase health insurance found himself in need of six months of intensive care. Paul correctly, but politically incorrectly, replied, "That's what freedom is all about -- taking your own risks." CNN moderator Wolf Blitzer pressed his question further, asking whether "society should just let him die." The crowd erupted with cheers and shouts of "Yeah!", which led Krugman to conclude that "American politics is fundamentally about different moral visions." Professor Krugman is absolutely right; our nation is faced with a conflict of moral visions. Let's look at it.…

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Feds Allow Arsenic in Apple Juice? 12.5.11

2011-12-05 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

This past year, I started writing a health and fitness column through Creators.com, titled "C-Force." It is no surprise that in researching for that column, I've discovered repeat offenses of food and beverage tampering by the federal government. But arsenic in apple juice? Dr. Oz received significant flak when he reported in September that "some of the best-known brands of apple juice contain arsenic." Since then, however, Oz has been redeemed and his claims substantiated!…

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Will The Economy Sink Obama? 12.5.11

2011-12-05 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Writing for the liberal-leaning Brookings Institution, William Galston surveys the demographic and political landscape. He expresses alarm about President Obama's re-election chances. "If the election pitting Obama against the strongest potential Republican nominee, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, were held tomorrow, the president would probably lose." Romney is the strongest possible nominee, but, as Galston demonstrates, even with Obama's weaknesses, pitfalls await. In the first place, a year is a long time in politics. The unemployment rate could decline dramatically. Obama could do the smart thing and focus his re-election effort on the Midwestern states that have decided presidential contests for more than 50 years, or the Republicans could "commit creedal suicide by nominating a presidential candidate outside the mainstream or unqualified for the office."…

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Christmas Books 12.5.11

2011-12-05 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

The joys of Christmas do not include coping with crowds at shopping malls or wracking your brains trying to figure out what to get as a gift for someone who already seems to have everything. Books are a way out of both situations. You don't even have to go to a bookstore, with books so readily available on-line. As for the person who seems to have everything, newly published books are among the things they probably don't always have.…

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What Does Adultery Tell Us About Character? 12.5.11

2011-12-05 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

With Herman Cain's announcement that he was suspending his presidential campaign because of the charges of sexual harassment and of a 13-year affair, issues are raised that the country would do well to think through. The two most obvious are whether we should care about a politician's sexual life and how much the press should report about these matters. But there is a larger issue that needs to be addressed first: What does adultery tell us about a person? For many Americans, the answer is: "Pretty much all we need to know." This certainly seems to be the case with regard to presidential candidates. The view is expressed this way: "If he can't keep his vows to his wife, how can we trust him to keep his vows to his country?"…

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Newt Keeps Pitching the America of His Imagination 12.2.11

2011-12-05 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

Here are a couple of things to keep in mind about Newt Gingrich, as he leads in polls for the Republican presidential nomination nationally and in Iowa and South Carolina, and may be threatening Mitt Romney's lead in New Hampshire. One is that he is an autodidact. A second is that he has incredible perseverance. Autodidact is a fancy word for someone who is self-taught. Gingrich calls himself a historian and says his worldview was shaped at age 15 by viewing the bones at the ossuary at Verdun, site of the World War I battle. And he did earn a Ph.D. in history in 1971, with a dissertation on "Belgian Education Policy in the Congo: 1945-1960." But he hasn't pursued that or any other subject with scholarly rigor. Instead, in his voluminous writings and unusually lengthy speeches, you will find references to the futurist Alvin Tofler, to Olympic beach volleyball, to zoos and space exploration. You'll find management book lingo, salesmanship tips, offbeat and sometimes revealing facts and anecdotes. Gingrich started running for Congress as a teacher at West Georgia College, in a traditionally Democratic area where he had no local connections, in 1973. That was when Richard Nixon was president. Nelson Rockefeller was governor of New York, and Ronald Reagan governor of California. Both had supported tax increases and signed bills legalizing abortion. Paul Ryan, Marco Rubio and Bobby Jindal were not yet in kindergarten.…

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Where Ron Paul Is Right 12.1.11

2011-12-02 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

Five years ago last month, Milton Friedman died at age 94. To the very end, the Nobel Prize winning economist was astute, tireless and wonderfully avuncular. Thanks to the Internet, his commentaries on subjects ranging from greed, to slavery, to the Great Depression myth and many other topics, can be enjoyed forever. Of course, great thinkers have been recording their thoughts in books for millennia. And Friedman was no exception. But there's no denying the immediacy and intimacy of video. Wouldn't we have loved to click on Edmund Burke, Alexander Hamilton or Cicero and watch them talk about their ideas? If you do dip into the Friedman oeuvre, start with his exchange with Phil Donahue! Nothing would be easier than to invoke the great Friedman as the sage of limited government. He was certainly that. If he were commenting on America's current predicament, he would doubtless prescribe a radically smaller public sector. But Friedman poses challenges to conservatives as well as liberals. He opposed, for example, the war on drugs. That's right. Friedman was for legalization of all drugs, not just marijuana.…

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Egyptian Elections Pose Danger for US 12.1.11

2011-12-02 :: Linda Chavez
Length: 5s

Americans notoriously care little about foreign affairs, but this week's elections in Egypt deserve our attention. The Egyptian version of the so-called Arab Spring began as a popular uprising against long-term strongman Hosni Mubarak and promised greater liberty and freedom for the most populous Arab nation. But early returns from parliamentary elections in about a third of Egypt's provinces, including Cairo, suggest that Islamists will carry the day. The implications for peace in the Middle East are worrisome. The Muslim Brotherhood -- an outlawed group prior to the fall of Mubarak and long considered a terrorist organization -- has won a plurality of votes in the first round of voting. (Elections in the remaining provinces will take place in December and January.) What's more, candidates supported by the ultra-religious Salafi sect have won nearly 25 percent of the parliamentary seats so far, and it's likely that they'll join the Muslim Brotherhood to form a government. The Salafi winners in Egypt's elections are already talking about changing the banking system to conform to Islamic law (which forbids paying or charging interest), censoring art and entertainment, outlawing the sale of alcohol and restricting education for women. And since the Salafis will hold the balance of power, it's difficult to imagine that the Muslim Brotherhood will resist. Of course, the most immediate impact will fall on Egyptian women, whose rights will be curtailed by Islamic law, as well as on the 10 percent of the Egyptian population that is Christian. Inevitably, however, an Islamist government in Cairo will spell trouble for the United States and pose a grave danger to our ally, Israel.…

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Miley Cyrus, Occupier Poster Girl 12.1.11

2011-12-02 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

She's perfect. Miley Cyrus, Hollywood's perpetually half-dressed wild child with an insatiable appetite for attention, jumped in front of the Occupy Wall Street bandwagon this week. The young Disney mogul unveiled a YouTube anthem hailing the aimless, anti-capitalist protesters. Smells like opportunistic teen queen spirit. Like so much of the warmed-over, Big Labor-underwritten Occupy movement, Miley's musical tribute to its foot soldiers is a worn-out derivative remix. She took "Liberty Walk," a year-old single; spliced in video footage of union marchers carrying carbon-copy "TAKE BACK OUR DEMOCRACY" signs; tossed in random scenes of global discontent from London to China to San Diego to Salem, Oregon; slapped on a treacly dedication to "the thousands of people who are standing up for what they believe in" (like, whatever that is); stirred; auto-tuned; and released: "Sayin' goodbye to the people who tied you up/ It's a liberty walk, walk/ Feelin' your heart again/ Breathin' new oxygen/ It's a liberty walk, walk/ Free yourself, slam the door, not a prisoner anymore!"…

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Obama Pleads for 4 More 12.1.11

2011-12-02 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

Instead of trying to govern, a matter about which I suppose we should be grateful, President Obama is once again galloping from fundraiser to fundraiser, straining to make the implausible case that the country needs his second term. In New York for three events -- in which he raked in $2 million from the very type of fat cats he daily condemns -- he pleaded with voters (Reuters' terminology, not mine) to be patient with him and to give him more time to fulfill his 2008 "hope and change" campaign promise. He told supporters: "After all that is happening in Washington, it may be tempting to believe that change may not be as possible as we thought. It has been three wrenching years for this country." I'll say. Well, I, for one, fault him not for failing to honor that promise, but for keeping it. We've had change, all right, and precisely the kind he had in mind. One can only imagine how much more change he would have effected if he'd had his way -- if democracy, as he has complained, weren't so "slow" and so "messy." Worse still, let's imagine how much more change he'd attempt if, God forbid, he were to purloin a second term. His words to the friendly audiences confirm what attentive observers already understand about his remaining ambitions. He said: "Every single thing that we care about is at stake in this next election. It's going to take more than a few years to meet the challenges that have been decades in the making." It would be one thing if Obama had been referring to the entitlement structure that the liberal establishment has imposed on Americans over the past half-century or more. But if entitlements were his concern, he wouldn't be single-handedly obstructing their structural reform. No, he's talking about the sluggish state of the economy, which absolutely wouldn't take even two years -- much less a decade -- to turn around if he would remove his socialist boot from its gasping throat.…

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Untouched by the 60s, 'Romney reflects the Corny '50s 11.30.11

2011-12-01 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

One question I sometimes have been asked in this presidential campaign goes something like this: Why does Mitt Romney sound so corny? Actually, phrasing it that way suggests the answer. "Corny" is a word you don't hear people say much any more. As you reach a certain age, you hear yourself uttering words or phrases that you realize no one else says anymore. The vernacular of your youth has passed into quiet obscurity. As it happens, I know something about Romney's youth, since he was three years behind me at the private boys school I attended in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. I still have trouble shaking my image of him as a 14-year-old boy, which he was when I graduated. Romney was popular at school in part because his father was the Republican candidate for governor that year and would be the first Republican to hold that office in 14 years. This was a school where the straw vote in the 1960 presidential election was Richard Nixon 92 percent, John Kennedy 8 percent. Academically, the school was a fast track, with some very good teachers and a lot of very smart boys. Romney was not at the top of his class, but apparently he did just fine.…

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Bulletproof Barney Frank Retires -- Liberal, Gay, Untouchable 11.30.11

2011-12-01 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

When Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., announced his intention not to seek re-election after a 32-year career, not one of the nightly news broadcast network anchors found time or space to mention either Frank's central role in the housing meltdown or his congressional reprimand. Not one. Similarly, an Associated Press article headlined, "Democratic Rep. Barney Frank Announces Retirement," mentioned the reprimand, but nada on Frank and the housing collapse. ABC called him "one of the most familiar, powerful and colorful characters on Capitol Hill." NBC said, "Among his legacies -- besides his legendary sharp tongue -- he was the first member of Congress to publicly acknowledge he was gay, back in 1987." In a nearly 30-paragraph press release -- uh, news article -- headlined, "Barney Frank, a Top Liberal, Won't Seek Re-election," The New York Times sanitized, purged and whitewashed. The "all the news that's fit to print" newspaper, America's most influential, left out a few things. Frank relentlessly defended Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the "government sponsored entities" at the center of the housing meltdown. National Review editorialized: "It is as a champion of a different kind of pay-for-play operation, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, that the congressman did the most damage to the country." Economist Thomas Sowell wrote last year, "No one contributed more to the policies behind the housing boom and bust, which led to the economic disaster we are now in, than Congressman Barney Frank."…

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Eat Less Salt, or Else 11.30.11

2011-12-01 :: Steve Chapman
Length: 5s

"Put down the salt shaker and back away from the table. And don't even think about going for the chips." Those are lines you may hear on a TV police drama of the future, when the federal drive to curb salt consumption reaches cruising speed. Last year, the government's Institute of Medicine urged the Food and Drug Administration to "gradually step down the maximum amount of salt that can be added to foods, beverages, and meals." The FDA is listening. In September, it published a notice concerning issues "associated with the development of targets for sodium reduction in foods to promote reduction of excess sodium intake." It is currently focusing on voluntary steps to "promote gradual, achievable and sustainable reduction of sodium intake over time." But if it doesn't get its way, it may go beyond gentle encouragement. "Nothing is off the table," a spokesperson declared last year. Salt has always been prized as a culinary marvel -- perking up flavors, masking bitter elements and preventing spoilage. Soup without salt is excellent for nourishing your garden, but unfit to eat. Any number of dishes taste better with a dash or two.…

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Ending Income Inequality? 11.28.11

2011-11-29 :: Walter WIlliams
Length: 5s

Benefiting from a hint from an article titled "Is Harry Potter Making You Poorer?", written by my colleague Dr. John Goodman, president of the Dallas-based National Center for Policy Analysis, I've come up with an explanation and a way to end income inequality in America, possibly around the world. Joanne Rowling was a welfare mother in Edinburgh, Scotland. All that has changed. As the writer of the "Harry Potter" novels, having a net worth of $1 billion, she is the world's wealthiest author. More importantly, she's one of those dastardly 1-percenters condemned by the Occupy Wall Streeters and other leftists. How did Rowling become so wealthy and unequal to the rest of us? The entire blame for this social injustice lies at the feet of the world's children and their enabling parents. Rowling's wealth is a direct result of more than 500 million "Harry Potter" book sales and movie receipts grossing more than $5 billion. In other words, the millions of "99-percenters" who individually plunk down $8 or $9 to attend a "Harry Potter" movie, $15 to buy a "Harry Potter" novel or $30 to buy a "Harry Potter" Blu-ray Disc are directly responsible for contributing to income inequality and wealth concentration that economist and Nobel laureate Paul Krugman says "is incompatible with real democracy." In other words, Rowling is not responsible for income inequality; it's the people who purchase her works.…

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Gingrich and Immigration 11.28.11

2011-11-29 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

Now that Newt Gingrich has become the latest in a series of Republican front-runners, he is getting the kinds of scrutiny and attacks that have done in other front-runners. One of the issues that have aroused concern among conservative Republicans is that of amnesty for illegal immigrants, especially after Gingrich said that it would not be "humane" to deport someone who has been living and working here for years. Let's go back to square one. The purpose of American immigration laws and policies is not to be either humane or inhumane to illegal immigrants. The purpose of immigration laws and policies is to serve the national interest of this country.…

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Who's the Most Conservative of Them All? 11.28.11

2011-11-29 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

While the nation was digesting its turkey dinner, Rep. Michelle Bachmann was seizing an opportunity to score points at Newt Gingrich's expense. Suggesting that his position on illegal immigration amounts to "amnesty," Bachmann predicted that the GOP electorate would "come home" to the person who has been the most "consistent conservative." That would be, she offers, herself. The voters may not agree with her solution, but many in the GOP do seem to be looking for a -- forgive the expression -- "thrill down the leg" candidate to take on Obama in the general election. Thus, the seismic spikes for Bachmann, Perry, Cain and even, briefly, Trump. It is now, apparently, Newt Gingrich's turn in what Brit Hume called "the single most dangerous place to be in American politics, which is the non-Romney leader in the Republican field."…

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A Response to Oregon's Governor on Capital Punishment 11.28.11

2011-11-29 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

The governor of Oregon, John Kitzhaber, announced last week that he would not allow any more executions in his state during his time in office. Kitzhaber, a Democrat, gave five reasons for his decision. My response follows each one. 1. "I refuse to be part of this compromised and inequitable system any longer." This has become one of the most frequently offered reasons for objecting to capital punishment -- that because the system is not equitable, no murderer should be put to death.…

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A Quick Look at the GOP Field 11.28.11

2011-11-29 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

The GOP presidential nomination process is a roller-coaster ride -- sometimes uplifting, other times discouraging, but we press forward. President Obama and his agenda are unspeakably disastrous for the nation, so this election matters more than any in my lifetime. The national debt clock is ticking faster than Obama's heart beats for big government, and his re-election would guarantee virtual national bankruptcy. That's why the grass-roots tea party phenomenon sprouted, and it's why there is so much scrutiny of the GOP candidates.…

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Thanksgiving 2011 11.22.11

2011-11-22 :: Tony Blankley
Length: 5s

As we approach the festive season -- the elongated, enchanting month from Thanksgiving through Christmas to New Years -- my mind has been drifting through various memorable past holidays. Some have been personal -- the last one with my father before he died. But one that stands out for historic reasons was Christmas 1991. It was precisely on Dec. 25, 1991 -- 20 years ago next month -- that the Soviet Union expired. Mikhail Gorbachev resigned his office, and the godless Soviet Union formally ended its existence. On that Christmas Day -- of all days --mankind was given the gift of deliverance from the half-century-long threat of nuclear annihilation. Mankind had never been more than one human misjudgment away from the unthinkable. It seemed a miracle that for all the human blundering, the crass politics of the world, the trillions of dollars spent on nuclear weapons -- we had come out the other side untouched by the long-dreaded nuclear flame. But after expressing my heartfelt gratitude for the deliverance from such an evil, I remember thinking that it was a pity that from then on history and politics would be so boring -- not that I was complaining.…

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Superfrauds 11.22.11

2011-11-22 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

Our government has the time to worry about school lunch menus in Boise, Idaho, but the Senate hasn't found the time to pass a budget in Washington, D.C., in nearly three years. H.L. Mencken famously wrote that every decent man is ashamed of his government. This one gives you little choice. Gridlock is ordinarily the most constructive and moral form of government, but with entitlement programs on autopilot self-destruct, we're in trouble. So Americans turned their weary eyes toward a dream team, a supercommittee, a 12-member panel of our brightest lights, charged with identifying a measly $1.2 trillion in deficit savings over 10 years. Save us.…

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Passing the Purse 11.22.11

2011-11-22 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

Clearly what we need is a super-duper committee. Instead of six Republicans and six Democrats, it will have three members from each party, and its deficit reduction plan will go directly to the president for his signature, bypassing Congress entirely. This time for sure! The recurrent fantasy that Congress can delegate difficult fiscal decisions to an autonomous body -- whether a commission or, as in the case of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, a subset of itself -- speaks volumes about the abysmal failure of our elected representatives to do the work they were hired to do. Now that the latest attempt to reassign the power of the purse has collapsed in ignominy, it hardly seems likely that Congress will rise to the task, especially since it has not managed to pass an actual budget (as opposed to continuing resolutions) in more than two and a half years.…

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The Search for Marizela: A Thanksgiving Note 11.22.11

2011-11-22 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

On March 5, my 18-year-old cousin disappeared from her University of Washington campus in Seattle. Marizela Perez -- 5-foot-5, 110 pounds, short black hair with brown/red highlights and bangs cut into an asymmetrical bob, wearing a dark hooded jacket, jeans and light brown suede boots -- was last seen at a Safeway grocery that fateful Saturday afternoon. Marizela walked out the door and up Brooklyn Ave., and hasn't been seen or heard from since.…

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Should the Rich Be Condemned? 11.21.11

2011-11-21 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

Thomas Edison invented the incandescent bulb, the phonograph, the DC motor and other items in everyday use and became wealthy by doing so. Thomas Watson founded IBM and became rich through his company's contribution to the computation revolution. Lloyd Conover, while in the employ of Pfizer, created the antibiotic tetracycline. Though Edison, Watson, Conover and Pfizer became wealthy, whatever wealth they received pales in comparison with the extraordinary benefits received by ordinary people. Billions of people benefited from safe and efficient lighting. Billions more were the ultimate beneficiaries of the computer, and untold billions benefited from healthier lives gained from access to tetracycline. President Barack Obama, in stoking up class warfare, said, "I do think at a certain point you've made enough money." This is lunacy. Andrew Carnegie's steel empire produced the raw materials that built the physical infrastructure of the United States. Bill Gates co-founded Microsoft and produced software products that aided the computer revolution. But Carnegie had amassed quite a fortune long before he built Carnegie Steel Co., and Gates had quite a fortune by 1990. Had they the mind of our president, we would have lost much of their contributions, because they had already "made enough money."…

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Alice in Liberal Land 11.21.11

2011-11-21 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

"Alice in Wonderland" was written by a professor who also wrote a book on symbolic logic. So it is not surprising that Alice encountered not only strange behavior in Wonderland, but also strange and illogical reasoning -- of a sort too often found in the real world, and which a logician would be very much aware of. If Alice could visit the world of liberal rhetoric and assumptions today, she might find similarly illogical and bizarre thinking. But people suffering in the current economy might not find it nearly as entertaining as "Alice in Wonderland."…

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Students Share Penn State Shame 11.21.11

2011-11-21 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

The initial shock of the child abuse scandal at Penn State was disturbing enough, but what came later may have been even more so. That Joe Paterno, other coaches and members of the administration failed in a straightforward, utterly uncomplicated moral task -- to protect defenseless children from rape -- is almost mind numbing. No weighing of competing interests or complex variables was required. On one hand, you had children being abused and, on the other, the reputation of a hugely profitable football program. They chose the football program!…

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Even Obama's Cheerleaders Are Falling Away 11.21.11

2011-11-21 :: David Limbaugh
Length: 5s

President Obama's cheerleaders are starting to peel away along with his approval ratings, and it's a fascinating sight to behold. They offer different reasons, but they all boil down to one obvious thing -- Obama is first and foremost about Obama -- and one less obvious: He has been a failed president. Democratic pollsters Pat Caddell and Doug Schoen, admittedly more centrist than most of their Democratic counterparts, penned an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal urging Obama "to abandon his candidacy for re-election." The authors conclude that the only way Obama could possibly win in 2012 would be "to wage the most negative campaign in history," because he has no successful record to run on. If he would happen to win in that way, he wouldn't be able to govern, they say, so he should step aside and allow Hillary Clinton to run.…

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The Secrets of Soros, Obama, Occupiers and the MSM (Part 2 of 3) 11.21.11

2011-11-21 :: Chuck Norris
Length: 5s

Last week, I discussed how Occupy protesters are being directly aided by the mainstream media and indirectly aided by White House stimulus money, as well as New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg's and even Vice President Joe Biden's households. I also detailed how the mainstream media are accelerating their progressive blitz not only to hasten the second coming, or election, of President Barack Obama but also to help him and other progressives in reaching their final goal of "fundamentally transforming the United States of America." I believe the MSM are also bent to coronate a particular GOP candidate whom they feel could be beaten most easily by Obama. I believe that candidate is former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, for the sole fact that the powers behind the MSM believe his presidential run would fracture the Republican Party and cause a third-party candidate to run, dividing the conservative vote, just as Ross Perot did in 1992 and 1996.…

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Obama Has a Knack for Ticking off America's Friends 11.16.11

2011-11-16 :: Michael Barone
Length: 5s

The election of Barack Obama, we were told, would bring new respect and friendship for America in the world. No longer would we be led by a Texas cowboy ignorant of and indifferent to world opinion. Instead, we would have a visionary leader sympathetic to the governments and peoples of the world. But Obama's best moments in foreign policy have been when he follows the leads of predecessors. In his twice-postponed trip to Australia this week, he will reportedly announce that a U.S. Navy base will be opened there. That cements ties already strengthened by George W. Bush and previous presidents to the one nation in the world that has fought alongside the United States in every war in the last century. But domestic politics can trump foreign policy for Obama. He cancelled previous Australian trips to lobby the House to pass Obamacare and to respond to the Gulf oil spill. Closer to home, crassly political ploys have angered the governments and peoples of our two geographical neighbors, Mexico and Canada. Only domestic politics can explain two of the Obama administration's most controversial moves: exporting illegal guns to Mexico and balking at building an oil pipeline from Canada. The export of guns to Mexico was the whole point of the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms' Operation Fast and Furious. Why ever would our government do such a thing? Conservative commentators have argued that the administration wanted to use evidence of deaths caused by guns illegally exported from the U.S. to spur demands for gun control laws here. Democratic leaders have done that before. In 2009, Obama claimed that "more than 90 percent of guns recovered in Mexico come from the United States." That claim was echoed by Hillary Clinton and Sens. Dick Durbin and Dianne Feinstein.…

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A Little Hardball With Chris Matthews About John Kennedy 11.16.11

2011-11-16 :: Larry Elder
Length: 5s

I just interviewed MSNBC "Hardball" host Chris Matthews about his new book, "Jack Kennedy: Elusive Hero." You know things didn't go well when, a few minutes after the interview concludes, Matthews' booker emails my producer: "I wish you would've let me know that Larry was planning on attacking Chris. Chris is always up for a good, healthy debate, but that was really not professional or cool." To which my talented, hardworking producer, Jason Rose, responded: "Larry addressed historical accounts directly related to the subject matter of Mr. Matthews' book. Larry doesn't agree with the one-sidedness of the book's portrayal of JFK. "Mr. Matthews refused to address Larry's issue with the book. He refused to debate. Larry made no personal attacks on Mr. Matthews, but tried to address the book's shortcomings. Given Mr. Matthew's typical on-air demeanor and style, Larry felt that a spirited debate would be more than manageable by Mr. Matthews." Matthews' book ends in 1989 -- as the Berlin Wall came crashing down: "The Iron Curtain was being ripped aside. Communism was in its death throes. The Cold War was ending without the nuclear war we so feared. We had gotten through it alive, those of us who once hid under those little desks of ours. "Thanks to him, I'd say. He'd come a long way from the kid who caused trouble at boarding school, from being Joe Kennedy's son. In the time of our greatest peril, at the moment of ultimate judgment, an American president kept us from the brink, saved us really, kept the smile from being stricken from the planet. "He did that. He, Jack Kennedy."…

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Newt Gingrich, Myth and Mouth 11.16.11

2011-11-16 :: Steve Chapman
Length: 5s

Republican voters' esteem for Newt Gingrich has been rising fast. At this rate it might someday equal, though not surpass, his regard for himself. Gingrich is not a person with an ego. He's an ego with a person. Just listen to his explanation of why it took him a while to catch on with voters: "Because I am much like Reagan and Margaret Thatcher, I'm such an unconventional political figure that you really need to design a unique campaign that fits the way I operate and what I'm trying to do." Other GOP candidates sound like they are merely campaigning for office. Gingrich, however, hurls verbal thunderbolts like Zeus, as the lights flicker and the earth shakes. Hopelessly in love with the sound of his own voice, he exhibits a stern, overbearing self-assurance that gives his pronouncements weight even when he is uttering nonsense. In a debate last week, the former House speaker was asked a simple question: What measures would he adopt after repealing President Barack Obama's health care plan? After ridiculing the question and trying repeatedly to evade it, he gave his answer: "One, you go back to a doctor-patient relationship and you involve the family in those periods where the patient by themselves can't make key decisions. But you re-localize it. Two, as several people said, including Gov. Perry, you put Medicaid back at the state level...…

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Constitutional or Not, Obamacare Has To Go 11.15.11

2011-11-15 :: David Harsanyi
Length: 5s

Is not doing something the same as doing it, and should government be allowed to force you not to do the thing you're already not doing by making you do it so you don't not do it anymore? That is just one of the perplexing legal questions the Supreme Court will likely find a way to say "yes" to in July after it wrestles with the constitutionality of Obamacare. Once the court upholds the individual mandate -- a provision that allows politicians to coerce citizens to purchase products in private markets (or, in this case, state-backed monopolies) -- we will have precedent that puts few limits on the reach of Washington and crony capitalism. And beyond policy, Obamacare demonstrated why we should be cynical about government.…

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Obama's Half-Billion-Dollar Crony Drug Deal 11.15.11

2011-11-15 :: Michelle Malkin
Length: 5s

What do you get when you mix Democratic fat-cat donations, Big Labor favors, pharmaceutical lobbying and Beltway business as usual? Answer: another toxic half-billion-dollar Barack Obama-approved crony deal. Move over, Solyndra. Here comes Siga-Gate. This latest Chicago-style payoff on your dime involves a dubious smallpox drug backed by a liberal billionaire investor, along with a former union boss who was one of the White House's most frequent visitors. They're the "1 percent" with 100 percent immunity from the selectively outraged Occupier mobs that purport to oppose partisan government bailouts and handouts to privileged corporations.…

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An Important New Book 11.15.11

2011-11-15 :: Tony Blankley
Length: 5s

A just released book, "Bowing to Beijing" by Brett M. Decker and William C. Triplett II, will change forever the way you think about China -- even if, like me, you already have the deepest worries about the Chinese threat. As I opened the book, I was expecting to find many useful examples of Chinese military and industrial efforts to get the better of the United States and the West. Indeed, there are 100 pages of examples of the most remorseless Chinese successes at stealing the military and industrial secrets of the West and converting them into a growing menace -- soon to be a leviathan -- bent on domination and defeat of America. The authors itemize the sheer, unprecedented magnitude of this effort. But the opening chapters dealt with human rights abuses, and my first thought as I started reading was that I wanted to get right to the military and industrial examples.…

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Upholding the Insurance Mandate Would Encourage Endless Meddling 11.15.11

2011-11-15 :: Jacob Sullum
Length: 5s

A couple of months ago, Deputy Assistant Attorney General Beth Brinkmann was standing before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, defending the federal law requiring Americans to buy government-approved health insurance, when Judge Laurence Silberman asked her about broccoli. Specifically, he wanted to know whether a law requiring Americans to buy broccoli would exceed the federal government's authority to regulate interstate commerce. "No," Brinkmann said. "It depends," she added. Silberman evidently was troubled by that shifty answer. Last week, he expressed "discomfort with the government's failure to advance any clear doctrinal principles limiting congressional mandates that any American purchase any product or service in interstate commerce." Oddly, he voiced that concern in the context of a majority opinion upholding the health insurance mandate. Dissenting Judge Brett Kavanaugh congratulated the majority for its candor in "admitting that there is no real limiting principle to its Commerce Clause holding."…

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Is Newt Electable? Hell Yes! 11.15.11

2011-11-15 :: Dick Morris
Length: 5s

As the debates accumulate, it becomes more and more evident that Newt Gingrich's intellect, experience, articulateness and depth of knowledge elevate him to the top of the field. Anyone should be happy to pay admission to watch him duel with Obama in debate. Newt's not as charismatic as Cain or as smooth as Romney, but boy, does he have a brain! Ever since the election campaign started, Newt has always gotten in his own way. Now he has graciously stepped aside and let his creativity and intellect shine through.…

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Will Republicans Blow It? 11.14.11

2011-11-14 :: Thomas Sowell
Length: 5s

Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes said that a good catch phrase could stop thinking for 50 years. One of the often-repeated catch phrases of our time -- "It's the economy, stupid!" -- has already stopped thinking in some quarters for a couple of decades. There is no question that the state of the economy can affect elections. But there is also no iron law that all elections will be decided by the state of the economy.…

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The Same Old Obama 11.14.11

2011-11-14 :: David LImbaugh
Length: 5s

President Obama's various remarks at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation CEO business summit in Honolulu over the weekend show he is simply incapable of growing in office. In just a few short statements, we saw many of the familiar practices through which he has alienated such a large percentage of the American people and damaged the economy. Away from his teleprompter, he treated us to further insults of Americans, his unfriendly attitude toward business and the private sector, his narcissism, and his refusal to accept responsibility for his own actions.…

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Little Cellist 11.14.11

2011-11-14 :: Mona Charen
Length: 5s

"The Little Cellist" is a brightly colored, chipper website aimed at children. There, you can find clips of Julian Lloyd Webber playing "The Swan" from "Carnival of the Animals" by Camille Saint-Sa‰ns, as well as quizzes, links to orchestra websites and assorted games for budding musicians. Being past the mid-century mark, I am decades past being a "little" -- in the sense of young -- anything. Yet, here I am, a middle-aged but eager and diligent beginner, sawing away on the cello. The optimists say it's never too late. I mean to find out if that's true. When I say, "sawing," that may be too kind to the sounds I've coaxed from this noble instrument in the first few weeks. My husband said he ducked, expecting a huge dragonfly to dive bomb him. My indulgent family endured more repetitions of "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" than non-convicts should be expected to hear. But they bore it like men -- as well they should (at least the offspring among them) considering the hours -- no, years! -- I've devoted to their lessons, rehearsals, auditions and practice, practice, practice.…

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Poverty in America? 11.14.11

2011-11-14 :: Walter Williams
Length: 5s

According to CBS News, "the number of people in the U.S. living in poverty in 2010 rose for the fourth year in a row, representing the largest number of Americans in poverty in the 52 years since such estimates have been published by the U.S. Census Bureau." MSNBC said, "The U.S. poverty rate remains among the highest in the developed world." Let's look at a few poverty facts. Heritage Foundation researchers Dr. Robert Rector and Rachel Sheffield laid out some facts about the poor in their report "Understanding Poverty in the United States: Surprising Facts About America's Poor" (9/13/2011). Eighty percent of poor households have air conditioning. Nearly three-fourths have a car or truck, and 31 percent have two or more. Two-thirds have cable or satellite TV. Half have one or more computers. Forty-two percent own their homes. The average poor American has more living space than the typical non-poor person in Sweden, France or the U.K. Ninety-six percent of poor parents stated that their children were never hungry during the year because they couldn't afford food.…

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Does a Full-Time Homemaker Swap Her Mind for a Mop? 11.14.11

2011-11-14 :: Dennis Prager
Length: 5s

I periodically write and regularly broadcast about male-female issues because I want to help men and women, especially husbands and wives, get along better. But I have developed a secondary reason: to elicit left-wing reactions. They reveal an enormous amount about how the left thinks. For example, one of the biggest left-wing websites (Daily Kos) wrote that "Dennis Prager advocates marital rape." Why? Because I wrote a column in which I suggested that if a woman loves her husband, and if he is a loving and good man, she might not want to be guided solely by "mood" in deciding whether and when to have sex with him.…

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