"To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." -- Theodore Roosevelt


One of Salem Oregon's Unofficial Top 1000 Conservative Political Bloggers!!!

Friday, April 18, 2014

New Study: 1/3 of Vegetative Patients may be Conscious



Something to keep in mind as health officials rush you to sign away a loved ones life...

From The Washington Free Beacon:

A new study published in the Lancet shows that as many as one-third of vegetative patients are misdiagnosed. 
Researchers used brain-imaging techniques and found minimal consciousness in 13 of 42 patients it studied. 
The study revealed that those patients with minimal consciousness have emotions and may feel pain. 
This could have major legal and medical consequences, Maclean’s reports.

After finding that 13 of 42 vegetative patients showed brain activity indicating minimal consciousness, they re-examined them a year later. By then, nine of the 13 had improved, and progressed into a minimally conscious state or higher. 
[...] Kate Bainbridge, who was one of the first vegetative patients examined by Owen, was given a scan that showed her brain lighting up in response to images of her family. Her health later improved. “I can’t say how lucky I was to have the scan,” she said in an email to Maclean’s last year. “[It] really scares me to think what would have happened if I hadn’t had it.”

Scary indeed.


Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Telegraph: Russian Separatists Registering Jews in Ukraine




From The Telegraph article by Tim Stanley:

A shocking story coming out of Ukraine: pro-Russian separatists in the eastern part of the country are accused of asking Jewish citizens to register their identity or face deportation. 
According to Haaretz, a notice to that effect was pasted up near a synagogue in Donetsk – a city being claimed by ethnic Russians. The notice ordered all Jews over the age of 16 to register with the self-proclaimed government and to pay a registration fee. It asks them to provide
ID and passport … to register your Jewish religion, religious documents of family members, as well as documents establishing the rights to all real estate property that belongs to you, including vehicles.
Failure to comply will result in deportation and confiscation of property. The notice claims that this action is necessitated by Jewish support for the “nationalist junta” in Kiev. The chairman of the temporary Russian government of Donetsk (characterised by hostility to the West and hankering for Sovietism) acknowledged that the notice exists but denies responsibility. 
What does this tell us? Whoever is responsible for the notice, it indicates that the situation in Ukraine is descending into violent anarchy exploited by extremists. Ever since the crisis began, the Russians have claimed that the Ukrainian nationalist movement is riddled with neo-Nazi anti-Semites – and they certainly do have a presence.  
But if this notice comes from the pro-Russian side then it’s evidence that they, too, contain elements of anti-Semitism. And, if the situation is allowed to descend ever further into chaos, Jews could end up becoming targets of violence. Which is obviously a terrifying thought.

Just when you didn't think the Ukrainian troubles couldn't get any better...

Well, I'm sure Ron Paul can explain how the Jews and Israel actually started the problems in Ukraine--  doubtlessly starting their nefarious planning not long after perpetrating 9/11.


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Lazy but Happier Blogger Update with One More Mark Gormley "Little Wings" Video


I've been rather lazy for the past four or five days. It's amazing how much better I feel when I ignore Obama's attempts to create big, centralized government. But I know I shouldn't be so complacent, and I'll be back in soon-- probably tomorrow.

In the meantime, here's another Mark Gormley classic "Little Wings." Once again, look for the classic move "The Mark Gormley Weight Shift."

Enjoy, and I'll be back soon:




Monday, April 14, 2014

Mark Gormley: "Without You"


Be sure to check out Mark's signature moves-- "The Head Turn," "Walking in Place," and "The Mark Gormley Weight Shift."

Enjoy:





Is it just me, or do you get the feeling that the girl in the video probably wouldn't be dating Mark Gormley in reality? Call me jaded.


Friday, April 11, 2014

Friday Funnies: Greta Van Susteren Interviews Democratic Hopeful Mike Dickinson


Truly one for the books. (h/t Patterico at Patterico's Pontifications)

Probably the worst interview a candidate could ever hope for.




So what are we to take away from this interview, Mr. Dickinson? That you're a liar and a partisan, but at least you admit that you're a liar and a partisan. Oh, and if one disagrees with Obama and Democrats then you're going to work take away their right to free speech-- because, you know, you just arbitrarily decided that they're not genuine.

Great...

WSJ: Why Would Democrats Circle the Wagons Around IRS after Feigned Outrage at the IRS Scandal?


"Look, my administration and its minions merely pick on racists and sellouts. Okay? They have it coming. Because voting is the best revenge. And, by the way, that's why voter ID laws are racist. This all makes sense if you think 'correctly'"

A good question.

From The Wall Street Journal piece by Kimberly A. Strassel:

Democrats quickly dropped any feigned outrage over IRS targeting and circled the wagons around the agency. Why? The targeting was outrageous, the public was fuming, and nobody likes the IRS. Joining with Republicans would have only been right and popular.   
That is, unless Democrats are worried. As the Camp [House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp] timeline and details show, the IRS responded to liberal calls to go after conservative groups. Democrats weren't just sending letters. Little noticed in the immediate aftermath of the IRS scandal was a letter sent May 23, 2013, by Carl Levin and (Republican) John McCain to the new acting director of the IRS disguised as an expression of outrage over IRS targeting. Artfully hidden within it was Mr. Levin's acknowledgment that his subcommittee on investigations had for a full year been corresponding and meeting with IRS staff (including Ms. Lerner) to ask "why it was not enforcing the 501(c)(4) statute."  
What was said in the course of that year? How much specific information was demanded on conservative groups, and how many demands dispensed on how to handle them? Good questions.  
In 2012, both the IRS and Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings were targeting the group True the Vote. We now have email showing contact between a Cummings staffer and the IRS over that organization. How much more contact was there? It's one thing to write a public letter calling on a regulator to act. It's another to haul the regulator in front of your committee, or have your staff correspond with or pressure said regulator, with regard to ongoing actions. That's a no-no.  
The final merit of Mr. Camp's letter is that he's called out Justice and Democrats. Mr. Camp was careful in laying out the ways Ms. Lerner may have broken the law, with powerful details. Democrats can't refute the facts, so instead they are howling about all manner of trivia—the release of names, the "secret" vote to release taxpayer information. But it remains that they are putting themselves on record in support of IRS officials who target groups, circumvent rules, and potentially break the law. That ought to go down well with voters.

But Obama assured us it was just some rogues in Cincinnati and then later that there wasn't an smidgen of evidence about all this.

Could the Obama-in-chief have lied to the American people?! Say it ain't so.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Obama Administration Scapegoating Israel as Mid-East Talks Collapse


"Look, if Israel would just cease to exist then the Middle East would be much better off. Then we could concentrate on sending selfies to Russia and borrowing more money from China."


This seems to be standard practice for Obama and his ilk. I guess it was too much of a stretch to blame Bush.

From The Washington Free Beacon article by Adam Kredo:

The Obama administration has been waging a secret media war in capitals across two continents blaming Israel for the recent collapse of peace talks with the Palestinians, according to former Israeli diplomats and Washington, D.C. insiders familiar with the peace process. 
Multiple sources told the Washington Free Beacon that top Obama administration officials have worked for the past several days to manufacture a crisis over the reissuing of housing permits in a Jerusalem neighborhood widely acknowledged as Israeli territory. 
Senior State Department officials based in Israel have sought to lay the groundwork for Israel to take the blame for talks collapsing by peddling a narrative to the Israeli press claiming that the Palestinians were outraged over Israeli settlements, the Free Beacon has learned. 
These administration officials have planted several stories in Israeli and U.S. newspapers blaming Israel for the collapse of peace talks and have additionally provided reporters with anonymous quotes slamming the Israeli government. 
The primary source of these multiple reports has been identified as Middle East envoy Martin Indyk and his staff, according to these insiders, who said that the secret media campaign against Israel paved the way for Secretary of State John Kerry to go before Congress on Tuesday and publicly blame Israel for tanking the talks.  
[...]  
Indyk, who served as the U.S. ambassador to Israel during the Clinton administration, as well as in several other roles, was appointed by Obama to act as the U.S. special envoy for peace negotiations. 
One former Israeli diplomat familiar with Indyk’s tactics said that he is a crass political player who has a history of planting negative stories about Israel in order to undermine the Netanyahu government and bolster his hand in the talks.  
[...]
Another Washington-based source familiar with the talks said that Kerry’s peace team has a track record of trashing Israel anonymously. 
“It’s one of the worst-kept secrets in Jerusalem that Kerry’s team leaks anti-Netanyahu quotes and claims to the Israeli press—not that is should be a mystery why Israeli reporters based in Israel keep producing anti-Bibi quotes from ‘American officials,’” the source said.  
[...]  
“When talks fell apart and the State Department needed a scapegoat, of course they chose Israel, except they picked the dumbest explanation imaginable,” said the source who serves as a senior official at a pro-Israel organization. 
The Obama administration seized on an announcement by the Israelis that 700 apartments would be built in Gilo, a Jerusalem suburb widely recognized as Israeli territory. 
The housing news was actually a reissue of an earlier pronouncement permitting these new apartments to be built, meaning that the substance of the decree had not changed for months and had not been a roadblock to the peace talks.

Planting stories to lay out the blame on an ally? Kerry and Obama would never, never do that. Especially not to Israel...


Rep. Elijah Cummings Linked to IRS Scandal


Rep. Elijah Cummings (D)

Surprised? You shouldn't be. Obama and the Democrats were adamant about maintaining control of the presidency, and obsessed with keeping political power out of the hands of the rising conservative factions in America. Breaking laws meant for little people is all in a days work for these people.

Besides what's the point of political power if you can't lord it over your lessers. Isn't that right Rep. Cummings?

From the Washington Examiner's article by Susan Ferrechio:

House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., has accused the panel's top Democrat of prompting the Internal Revenue Service in 2012 to target a conservative organization applying for non-profit status. 
Issa said records obtained last week from the IRS show communications from the office of ranking member Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., about True the Vote, a Texas-based, non-profit conservative group that aims to prevent voter fraud.  
The communications at one point involved Lois Lerner, the ex-IRS official whom Issa's panel is poised to hold in contempt of Congress on Thursday for refusing to provide testimony about her involvement in targeting conservative groups. 
“The IRS and the Oversight Minority made numerous requests for virtually identical information from True the Vote, raising concerns that the IRS improperly shared protected taxpayer information with Rep. Cummings’ staff,” a statement from the Oversight panel reads. 
According to Issa, Cummings and his staff sought “copies of all training materials used for volunteers, affiliates, or other entities,” from True the Vote. 
Five days after the Cummings inquiry, the IRS sent True the Vote an email requesting “a copy of [True the Vote’s] volunteer registration form,” “… the process you use to assign volunteers,” “how you keep your volunteers in teams,” and “how your volunteers are deployed … following the training they receive by you.” 
Issa said Cummings and his office asked for more information in January 2013 about True the Vote, this time getting Lerner involved. 
At one point, an email revealed, Lerner asked her deputy, “Did we find anything?” 
When the deputy said she had not received any new information, Lerner responded, “thanks – check tomorrow please.” 
Issa said Cummings had previously denied asking the IRS about True the Vote. 
At a February subcommittee hearing, when Issa asked whether his office may have put True the Vote “on the radar screen” of the IRS, Cummings said the accusation was “absolutely incorrect and untrue.”

How can there be any question that the partisan IRS was targeting conservative groups?

From Jim Hoft at The Gateway Pundit:

The IRS Conservative Targeting Scandal involved:

The real question is only who was responsible. I'm sure it all has nothing to do with Obama and IRS official Sarah Hall Ingram's 155 visits to the White House.


Mark Levin: "The President is actually spending more time fundraising in Texas than honoring those who were murdered at Fort Hood"





"The President is actually spending more time fundraising in Texas than honoring those who were murdered at Fort Hood at the memorial ceremonial… I’m sorry ladies and gentlemen, I believe this man is a disgrace.”

Well, that's because those who were killed at Foot Hood weren't his people. Obama is no fan of the military, but he absolutely despises the men and women who make up our military.

Is it any wonder that the Obama Administration has repeatedly worked to limit the spread of and discriminate against Christians in the military? Remember the U.S. army started listing Catholics and Evangelical Christians as extremist after Obama was in office.


Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Shocker: IRS Offices Firmly Side with Obama and Democrats


"The IRS dares to dream, dares to see the coming age of light. It will be a a glorious era of enlightenment... where federal bureaucrats shall reign over the huddled masses of pathetic non-government workers."

The IRS has become Obama's political attack dogs. Doubtlessly, their partisan attacks and leaks of Republicans' tax records and donor lists influenced the presidential race and very possibly changed the outcome.Would you expect anything else?

From The Washington Times article by Stephan Dinan (via Drudge):

Even as the IRS faces growing heat over Lois G. Lerner and the tea party targeting scandal, a government watchdog said Wednesday it’s pursuing cases against three other tax agency employees and offices suspected of illegal political activity in support of President Obama and fellow Democrats. 
In one case the Office of Special Counsel, which investigates federal employees who conduct politics on government time, said it was “commonplace” in a Dallas IRS office for employees to have pro-Obama screensavers on their computers, and to have campaign-style buttons and stickers at their office.  
In another case, a worker at the tax agency’s customer help line urged taxpayers “to re-elect President Obama in 2012 by repeatedly reciting a chant based on the spelling of his last name,” the Office of Special Counsel said in a statement. 
OSC said it is seeking “significant disciplinary action” against that employee. 
Another IRS employee in Kentucky has agreed to serve a 14-day suspension for blasting Republicans in a conversation with a taxpayer.  
“They’re going to take women back 40 years,” the IRS employee said in a conversation that was recorded. The employee also said that “if you vote for a Republican, the rich are going to get richer and the poor are going to get poorer.”
[...]  
The federal Hatch Act prohibits most government employees from conducting politics on government time. OSC is charged with looking into those violations.   
The accusations come as the IRS is still facing tough questions from House Republicans over its targeting of conservative groups seeking nonprofit status.
I'm sure it's just some individuals that just happen to work there and not a systemic/cultural problem caused by public sector unions. I mean suggesting that would just be crazy talk. Right, Wisconsin and Scott Walker?


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

U.S. Sees Sharp Rise in Health Insurance Premiums


"All this debt and guranteed failure, I bequeath to you. You're welcome."


Which is not really surprising, but whatever...

From The Daily Caller article by Sarah Hurtubise:

Americans have recently been hit with some of the largest premium increases in years, according to a Morgan Stanley survey of insurance brokers. 
The investment bank’s April survey of 148 brokers found that this quarter, the average premium increase for customers renewing an insurance plan is 12 percent in the small group market and 11 percent in the individual market, according to Forbes’ Scott Gottlieb. 
The hikes — the largest in the past three years, according to Morgan Stanley’s quarterly reports — are “largely due to changes under the [Affordable Care Act],” analysts concluded. Rates have been growing increasingly fast throughout all of 2013, after a period of drops in 2012. 
While insurers were hiking premiums since 2012 by smaller amounts, the lead-up to the Obamacare’s launch has seen the average rate  at which premiums are growing fourfold.
The small group market saw a jump from a growth rate of close to 3 percent during Morgan Stanley’s September 2013 survey to just above 6 percent three months later in December — the month before a surge of Obamacare regulations hit insurance companies. 
Over the next three months, the rate doubled again to the current average small growth premium growth rate of 12 percent. 
Individual policies saw a much starker jump after the Obamacare exchanges launched, in anticipation of the health care law going live in 2014. Morgan Stanley’s September 2013 survey, like the previous three quarters, found a fairly constant growth rate around 2 percent — but in December, the rate had shot up to above 9 percent.

Oh, and the cost of keeping ObamaCare up and running is billions of dollars a year, and the federal government gets unfettered access to your medical records, and Washington D.C. will get to determine your choice of treatments (for cost-effectiveness, of course), and the IRS (yes, Lois Lerner's IRS) will be "even-handededly" enforcing ObamaCare, and you can expect a decline in the quality of you health care and your lifespan.

Sounds great, right?

Oh, and the really major hikes in health insurance costs aren't expected to happen until 2016, so this is just a warm-up.

Thanks Democrats and Obama!


US Navy Converting Seawater into Fuel?




Let's not get ahead of ourselves, but this could be a really big thing...

From the AFP at Yahoo News (h/t Tom Blumer @ Bizzy Blog):

The US Navy believes it has finally worked out the solution to a problem that has intrigued scientists for decades: how to take seawater and use it as fuel 
The development of a liquid hydrocarbon fuel is being hailed as "a game-changer" because it would signficantly [sic] shorten the supply chain, a weak link that makes any force easier to attack. 
The US has a fleet of 15 military oil tankers, and only aircraft carriers and some submarines are equipped with nuclear propulsion. 
All other vessels must frequently abandon their mission for a few hours to navigate in parallel with the tanker, a delicate operation, especially in bad weather. 
The ultimate goal is to eventually get away from the dependence on oil altogether, which would also mean the navy is no longer hostage to potential shortages of oil or fluctuations in its cost. 
Vice Admiral Philip Cullom declared: "It's a huge milestone for us." 
"We are in very challenging times where we really do have to think in pretty innovative ways to look at how we create energy, how we value energy and how we consume it. 
"We need to challenge the results of the assumptions that are the result of the last six decades of constant access to cheap, unlimited amounts of fuel," added Cullom.  
[...]  
US experts have found out how to extract carbon dioxide and hydrogen gas from seawater. 
Then, using a catalytic converter, they transformed them into a fuel by a gas-to-liquids process. They hope the fuel will not only be able to power ships, but also planes.  
That means instead of relying on tankers, ships will be able to produce fuel at sea. 
- 'Game-changing' technology - 
The predicted cost of jet fuel using the technology is in the range of three to six dollars per gallon, say experts at the US Naval Research Laboratory, who have already flown a model airplane with fuel produced from seawater. 
Dr Heather Willauer, an research chemist who has spent nearly a decade on the project, can hardly hide her enthusiasm. 
"For the first time we've been able to develop a technology to get CO2 and hydrogen from seawater simultaneously, that's a big breakthrough," she said, adding that the fuel "doesn't look or smell very different."  
Now that they have demonstrated it can work, the next step is to produce it in industrial quantities. But before that, in partnership with several universities, the experts want to improve the amount of CO2 and hydrogen they can capture. 
"We've demonstrated the feasibility, we want to improve the process efficiency," explained Willauer.  
[...]
A crucial benefit, says Collum, is that the fuel can be used in the same engines already fitted in ships and aircraft. 
"If you don't want to re-engineer every ship, every type of engine, every aircraft, that's why we need what we call drop-in replacement fuels that look, smell and essentially are the same as any kind of petroleum-based fuels.  
Drawbacks? Only one, it seems: researchers warn it will be at least a decade before US ships are able to produce their own fuel on board.

 So is there a civilian market for this?


Monday, April 7, 2014

The Coming of Unaffordable Health Insurance Due to ObamaCare


The Light-bringer will save you from the burdens of personal choice on health matters-- and all for the bargain price of trillions of dollars!


I was just writing about how ObamaCare was going shoot up the costs of coverage and make affordable health care a thing of the past. Luckily enough, I came across this editorial from The Washington Examiner which mentions the coming rate hikes. Check out the whole piece at the link below.

From an editorial in The Washington Examiner:

On the campaign trail on June 5, 2008, after effectively securing the Democratic nomination, Obama declared, “In an Obama administration, we'll lower premiums by up to $2,500 for a typical family per year.” 
In reality, his law piled on a heap of new regulations on insurance policies that drove up the cost of insurance, especially on younger and healthier Americans. A Nov. 2013 Obamacare study from the Manhattan Institute looked at premiums in 49 states and found that on average, the base price of premiums went up 41 percent as a result of Obamacare. 
In the coming months, insurers will have to submit premiums for 2015, and they're already warning consumers to brace themselves. "I do think that it's likely premium rate shocks are coming,” Chet Burrell, chief executive officer of CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, told Reuters. “I think they begin to make themselves at least partially known in 2015 and fully known in 2016.”  
During his health care pitch to the American people, Obama also vowed to make the system more affordable to businesses. But Obamacare imposes a raft of new requirements and regulatory red tape on businesses. 
A recent study from the American Health Policy Institute analyzed the internal costs of Obamacare among more than 100 large employers (defined as having more than 10,000 workers). It found that over the next decade, these large employers would pay between $4,800 and $5,900 more per employee than they otherwise would have without Obamacare. In total, the study estimated, the cost of Obamacare to all large employers would be somewhere around $151 billion to $186 billion. [emphasis mine]

All that money so that big-gov fans in D.C. can tell you what insurance you must buy, for how much, and what will be the most cost-effective (also known as often ineffective) treatments inflicted upon you-- after all, decisions that important and expensive shouldn't be left in the hands of patients and doctors.

What a bargain!


About 1800 Children in New Jersey Have Health Plans Cancelled Due to ObamaCare


"Eggs have to be broken to make a good soup. Folks all know this. Besides those kids were most likely racist and against gay marriage."


Because it was all, you know, for the kids and stuff...

From the Breitbart article by Wynton Hall:

Roughly 1,800 New Jersey children had their insurance plans cancelled last week due to Obamacare.  
[...]  
Obamacare's new mandated requirements killed New Jersey's low-cost children's insurance coverage plan, FamilyCare Advantage. The plan, offered by Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, was designed for children whose parents make too much money to qualify for Medicaid and offered medical, dental, and vision coverage for just $144 a month. The program, which was the first of its kind in the nation, was implemented six years ago and considered a model for others states seeking economical ways to provide quality coverage for kids from working class families.  
Yet, since FamilyCare Advantage lacked things like mental health services, Obamacare deemed the children's 1,800 plans illegal and the program shuttered last week.  
"This is enormously disappointing, said NJ state Sen. Joseph Vitale (D) who co-sponsored the bill that created the program. "It was $5 for doctor visits, $1 for pharmacy and no deductible or cost sharing."  
The Obamacare plan offered by the same insurance provider has a $1,500 minimum deductible. [Yeah, and how much more will they have to pay per month?] Vitale told NJ.com that most families whose children were covered will be ineligible for taxpayer-funded federal Obamacare subsidies because "they earned too much money."  
The 1,800 New Jersey children join the five million other Americans who also had their plans canceled by Obamacare. A new study by the RAND Corporation reportedly finds that nearly one million people whose plans were canceled by Obamacare still remain uninsured, a figure Democrats previously claimed was less than 10,000.

Well, this what happens when you let D.C. politicians and bureaucrats determine what is best for your health needs. Bureaucracies simply do not care about you, and when the government is providing the health insurance, it massively complicates and hampers any courts ability to rule fairly on lawsuits brought against these government insurers. Health care becomes a political on the order of determining voting districts. Treating people this way is despicable, but inevitable under ObamaCare.

If you've read this horrendous, Los-Angeles-telephone-book-sized law, than this kind of is certainly not a surprise. The law is chock-full of the worst sort of the Left's liberty killing, micro-management, so there's going to be plenty more of atrocious incidences in the near future.

When? Hard to say, but basically when Obama stops illegally delaying ObamaCare's institution. So, probably after the 2014 elections.

But in the meantime all of these kids' mental health needs will be sort of covered after that $1500 deductible, so it's totally worth it.


Friday, April 4, 2014

U.S. Warns China Not to Annex (More) Asian Territories and Islands



Don't worry. According to Obama and Kerry, using these troops is not proper for the 21st-- and it's a sign of weakness too.


Or else what? My bet is that Kerry will tell them that they're not acting properly for the 21st Century. *gag*

From Reuters:

China should not doubt the U.S. commitment to defend its Asian allies and the prospect of economic retaliation should also discourage Beijing from using force to pursue territorial claims in Asia in the way Russia has in Crimea, a senior U.S. official said on Thursday. 
Daniel Russel, President Barack Obama's diplomatic point man for East Asia, said it was difficult to determine what China's intentions might be, but Russia's annexation of Crimea had heightened concerns among U.S. allies in the region about the possibility of China using force to pursue its claims. 
"The net effect is to put more pressure on China to demonstrate that it remains committed to the peaceful resolution of the problems," Russel, the U.S. assistant secretary of state for East Asia, told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.  
Russel said the retaliatory sanctions imposed on Russia by the United States, the European Union and others should have a "chilling effect on anyone in China who might contemplate the Crimea annexation as a model." [Bwah ha ha! Stop it! You're killing me!]  
This was especially so given the extent of China's economic interdependence with the United States and its Asia neighbors, Russel said.  
[...]  
Russel termed the deployment of large numbers of Chinese vessels in its dispute with the Philippines in the South China Sea "problematic" and said that Beijing had taken "what to us appears to be intimidating steps." 
"It is incumbent of all of the claimants to foreswear intimidation, coercion and other non-diplomatic or extra-legal means," he said. 
In Asia, China also has competing territorial claims with Japan and South Korea, as well as with Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan in potentially energy-rich waters.

Oh yeah, and also various islands (including Pagasa Island) located between Japan, China, and the Philippines.

China has somewhat recently turned to hard-Left regime, and as the country slumps economically, as the living conditions for China's citizens continues to deteriorate, China has focused more and more on the expansion of its territory. Nothing drums up support at home like a great, patriotic conflict against usurpers and aggressors.

Beyond that, Marxism is never self-sufficient so it has to expand, find a patron to pay its bills, or collapse. There is no patron large enough to cover China's expenses, so it has to either expand or reform. And there's really to incentive for the Chinese leadership to reform.

I really don't think that the State Department staff sending out selfies of themselves is going to worry China all that much.


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Massive Voter Fraud in North Carolina


President Asterisk, whose asterisk just keeps on getting bigger.


But remember that measures to curtail this sort of thing are racist...

From PJ Media:

The North Carolina State Board of Elections has found thousands of instances of voter fraud in the state, thanks to a 28-state crosscheck of voter rolls. Initial findings suggest widespread election fraud.
     
  • 765 voters with an exact match of first and last name, DOB and last four digits of SSN were registered in N.C. and another state and voted in N.C. and the other state in the 2012 general election. 
  • 35,750 voters with the same first and last name and DOB were registered in N.C. and another state and voted in both states in the 2012 general election. 
  • 155,692 voters with the same first and last name, DOB and last four digits of SSN were registered in N.C. and another state – and the latest date of registration or voter activity did not take place within N.C.
The second point is key, as double voting is election fraud under state and federal statutes. Punishment for double voting in federal elections can include jail time.  
In October 2012, Project Veritas produced video showing a Barack Obama campaign worker helping a voter register to vote in both Texas and Florida.

Nothing to see here. Move on. Move on.



Wednesday, April 2, 2014

ObamaCare to Cost Employers $5000 Per Employee


"And thus I give unto you mortals, the end of employer-based health insurance. You're welcome."


Maybe even more than that... But hey, remember that any claims that ObamaCare is bad for the economy is/are (a) stupid (b) racist (c) because you want poor people to die.

From The Washington Free Beacon article by Elizabeth Harrington (via Drudge):

Obamacare will cost large companies between $4,800 and $5,900 more per employee and add hundreds of millions to their overhead, according to a new survey
The American Health Policy Institute conducted a confidential survey of 100 large employers—those with 10,000 or more employees—asking what costs they expect to incur from Obamacare over the next decade. 
Factoring in the health care law’s added mandates, fees, and regulatory burdens, employers anticipate cost hikes between $163 million and $200 million in 2016, a 4.3 percent increase. By 2023, employers will be paying 8.4 percent more than “what they would otherwise be spending” for their employees’ health care. 
In the next 10 years, the total cost of Obamacare to all large American employers is estimated to be from $151 billion to $186 billion, according to the study. 
“This study is a c-suite diagnosis of how [the Affordable Care Act] ACA is shaping large employer behavior,” Tevi Troy, president of the American Health Policy Institute, said. “We don’t know yet precisely how employers will react, but the study shows that employers will have to make real changes or incur heavy costs, which means that the ACA will have a significant impact on those in employer-sponsored health care.”  
[...]  
“If the law leads to significant cost increases for [employers], this would affect the behavior of employers, which could in turn affect how—and even whether—they provide health care for their employees,” the study said. 
Health care costs have already been increasing for large businesses, which spend $578.6 billion each year to provide health coverage for 170.9 million employees, retirees, and dependents. However, numerous studies suggest that Obamacare is adding to employers’ burdens. 
For instance, a report by the Urban Institute found that Obamacare increased large employer health costs by $11.8 billion in 2012, and the Joint Committee on Taxation estimated that the excise tax on high-cost plans would cost $32 billion from 2018 to 2019.

Don't worry Americans! According to Dems, this is really, really good news for the economy. I'm not totally sure why, but it is! Or is it that it's only good for Washington DC's economy? I keep forgetting...

ObamaCare Enrollment Covers 1.7% of Formerly Uninsured and Increases Taxes $1.058 Trillion


"Folks can thank me for all that I give you by buying tacky commemorative plates. Remember those?"


And even that's a big maybe.

From the Breitbart article by Wynton Hall:

Obamacare, the plan purportedly created to provide health coverage for the uninsured, has enrolled just 1.7% of America's 48.6 million uninsured.  
News of the disastrous numbers comes as nervous Democrats and President Barack Obama, ahead of the November midterm elections, did their best on Monday's enrollment deadline to put a positive spin on the deeply unpopular Obamacare program. The latest Associated Press poll finds that Obamacare has now hit an all-time low approval rating of just 26 percent
The White House now claims an Obamacare enrollment figure of six million people. However, according to The New York Times, at least 20% of those never paid their premiums to activate coverage, leaving them uninsured. That drops the number down to 4.8 million.  
[...]  
Even conceding the White House its alleged six million enrollment figure (which, again, includes duplicates and incomplete applications), that would mean that just 810,000 of paying Obamacare customers were previously uninsured, a figure that represents 1.7% of America's 48.6 million uninsured people. 
Indeed, most of those the White House counts as Obamacare enrollees are among the five million who had their health insurance plans canceled due to Obamacare.

Oh, and did we mention the costs of ObamaCare?

From The Washington Free Beacon:

According to Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates, Obamacare is also adding $1.058 trillion in new taxes, including $317.7 billion in payroll taxes, a $111.0 billion tax on “Cadillac” high cost plans, and $55 billion for those who do not abide by the individual mandate.  
[...]  
The senators [Sens. Tom Coburn (R., Okla.) and John Barrasso (R., Wyo.)] predicted that the mandate would negatively impact jobs, which was backed up by the CBO estimate that the law will eliminate the equivalent of 2 million jobs.

Plus, Washington bureaucrats will begin making decisions on patients treatments-- in the name of cost-effectiveness. So let's all get ready to lobby DC for all our ills and treatments to be covered. And if not, then I hope your wealthy. Sound great, doesn't it?

And yet our community-organizer-in-chief has the gall to be running a victory lap right now. Pathetic.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Road & Track: "The government knew about GM ignition problems and did nothing"


"But the UAW donate a helluva lot to Democrats, so you know..."


Because, you know, the UAW GM is too big too fail.

From the Road & Track article by  Ed Niedermeyer (h/t Instapundit):

GM's recent wave of recalls reveals the ugly truth: The brutal competition for car sales can lead automakers to cut corners, including in crucial safety gear like airbags, steering, and brakes. The bottom line is that some automakers can't be relied on to always put customer safety first. 
In these situations, even the staunchest libertarian has to admit an uncomfortable truth: When all else fails, we ultimately rely on government regulators to ensure our safety on the road. Unfortunately, the still-unfolding GM scandal reveals that motorists can hardly rely on this last line of defense. That's because, like so many aspects of the US regulatory system, auto safety officials have more incentive to serve the interests of the automakers they are charged with watchdogging than to fulfill their public duty. Though the GM scandal is grabbing attention, it's clear that the NHTSA's problems run deeper than its failure to catch an ignition scandal it knew about as early as 2004 and only considered formally investigating in 2007.  
A recent New York Times article reveals the depth of revolving-door problem among auto regulators, pointing out that the last administrator of the National Highway Transit Safety Administration, David Strickland, left the agency for a lobbying firm employed by Chrysler the day after approving a controversial "fix" for rear-impact fire risk in Jeep Grand Cherokees. The fact that Strickland was apparently negotiating a job with a Chrysler lobbyist while making the decision to drop a recall of Grand Cherokees adds to a drumbeat of concern about this issue that dates back to at least the Toyota recall firestorm of 2010.  
[...]  
With the GM scandal providing a far more credible basis for a renewed push for regulation than the largely misunderstood Toyota problems, a number of lawmakers are reviving the push for tighter MVSA-style regulations. But although the GM situation may better illustrate the need for auto safety regulation, it's still unclear whether any proposed regulation could have prevented what appears to have been a shocking abdication of responsibility at GM.  
[...]  
Perhaps, then, the answer to America's latest auto safety crisis does not lie in simply throwing more money at the NHTSA, which clearly needs a better monitoring mandate before it can even hope to efficiently spend more tax money protecting consumers. In fact, the answer may not lie in regulation at all, but in a strong criminal law enforcement regime that targets the individuals responsible for defects that lead to injury and death. By creating new criminal penalties for auto safety malfeasance, along with strong incentives for whistleblowing, lawmakers could force individual employees to hold their companies responsible for design defects—or face the consequences. After all, the problem at GM seems to have stemmed from a lack of individual responsibility within a broader deficit in corporate responsibility.

And, rather importantly, we need to leave economic fascism out of our government.

As enormous gasbag Michael Moore calls on death and commando style raids on whoever is responsible at GM (no doubt, he believes executives are to blame), let's not forget that Obama was busily touting the GM Cobalt back in 2009. (video here)


Poll: Most Americans Oppose Stricter Gun Control Laws



Pic from Legal Insurrection

Probably as a result from the massive overreach by various lawmakers in New York, Colorado, etc., immediately after the Sandy Hook killings.

From Rasmussen Reports (via AWR Hawkins at Breitbart):

Most voters oppose tougher gun control for the first time since the Connecticut elementary school shootings in December 2012. 
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 40% of Likely U.S. Voters now think the United States needs stricter gun control laws, down nine points from last May and the lowest level of support for stricter laws since February 2012. Fifty-three percent (53%) do not think the country needs tougher gun control laws, the highest level of opposition in over two years.

Considering that we've witnessed the arrest of State Senator Leland Yee, a major gun control advocate in California, and the rather selective enforcement of Washington DC's gun control laws, I'm astonished it's not a bit lower. But the Dems did clamber up the backs of dead children to proclaim their "moral high ground," so...