Wednesday, July 27, 2011


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Posted on Wednesday, July 27, 2011 10:01:13 AM by Arrowhead1952

Sent with nostalgia...

The Green Thing

In the line at the store, the cashier told an older woman that she should bring her own grocery bags because plastic bags weren't good for the environment.

The woman apologized to him and explained, "We didn't have the green thing back in my day."

The clerk responded, "That's our problem today. Your generation did not care enough to save our environment."

He was right -- our generation didn't have the green thing in its day.

Back then, we returned milk bottles, soda bottles and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over. So they really were recycled.

But we didn't have the green thing back in our day.

We walked up stairs, because we didn't have an escalator in every store and office building. We walked to the grocery store and didn't climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time we had to go two blocks.

But she was right. We didn't have the green thing in our day.

Back then, we washed the baby's diapers because we didn't have the throw-away kind. We dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling machine burning up 220 volts -- wind and solar power really did dry the clothes. Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing.

But that old lady is right; we didn't have the green thing back in our day.

Back then, we had one TV, or radio, in the house -- not a TV in every room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief (remember them?), not a screen the size of the state of Montana .

In the kitchen, we blended and stirred by hand because we didn't have electric machines to do everything for us.

When we packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, we used a wadded up old newspaper to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap.

Back then, we didn't fire up an engine and burn gasoline just to cut the lawn. We used a push mower that ran on human power. We exercised by working so we didn't need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity.

But she's right; we didn't have the green thing back then.

We drank from a fountain when we were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time we had a drink of water.

We refilled writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and we replaced the razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull.

But we didn't have the green thing back then.

Back then, people took the streetcar or a bus and kids rode their bikes to school or walked instead of turning their moms into a 24-hour taxi service.

We had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances. And we didn't need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest pizza joint.

But isn't it sad the current generation laments how wasteful we old folks were just because we didn't have the green thing back then?

Please forward this on to another selfish old person who needs a lesson in conservation from a smartass young person.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Spend It Like Bush (American Thinker–Randall Hoven)

By Randall Hoven

What if, over the next decade, the federal government spends as irresponsibly as President George W. Bush did?

Compare two things: the 2012-2021 federal budget as proposed by President Obama in February (and as scored by the Congressional Budget Office in April), and the actual average spending level from 2001 through 2008 as a fraction of Gross Domestic Product. We'll keep the CBO's predictions of revenues and GDP untouched so that only spending differences are compared.

The CBO scored Obama's proposed budget as costing $46.2 trillion over 2012-2021, or 23.5% of GDP on average. Since the CBO expects $36.7 trillion in revenues over that time frame, the 10-year cumulative deficit would be $9.5 trillion. That is the Obama plan, and the only one he has put in writing this year.

For President Bush's numbers, we can use the White House Office of Management and Budget numbers (Table 1.2). Federal spending under Bush, from 2001 through 2008, varied between 18.2% and 20.7% of GDP, and averaged 19.6% of GDP.

Now we can do a simple ratio calculation. If we were to spend at the Bush rate (19.6% of GDP) instead of the Obama rate (23.5% of GDP), total spending over 2012-21 would be $38.5 trillion instead of $46.2 trillion.

That is a $7.7 trillion difference! Here is a table, to make the comparisons easy.

2012-2021 Federal Budget Projections


Obama's Plan

(as scored by CBO)

At Bush's Spending Rate (as % of GDP)


$36.702 T

$36.702 T


$46.172 T

$38.509 T

Cumulative Deficit

$9.470 T

$1.807 T

Cumulative Deficit

4.8% of GDP

0.92% of GDP

Debt held by the public in 2021

$20.806 T

$13.143 T*

Debt held by the public in 2021

87.4% of GDP

55.2% of GDP*

*Approximated by subtracting the 10-year cumulative deficit from total debt in 2021.

Got all that? To answer the original question: if, over the next decade, the federal government spends as "irresponsibly" as President George W. Bush did, it would:

  • Cut $7.7 trillion from Obama's spending plan and cumulative deficit.
  • Bring deficits below 1% of GDP (instead of 4.8%).
  • Reduce the federal debt held by the public to about 55% of GDP by 2021, or below the level it was last year (instead of nearly 90% of GDP)

Deficits below 1% of GDP and debt below 55% of GDP, both declining, would not even make the bond market's radar screen, much less lead to watch lists and downgrades. Our national debt nightmare would be over.

My proposed new slogan: "Spend it like Bush."

Here are a few tidbits from fiscal history. First, spending under President Clinton (1993-2000) averaged 19.8% of GDP. So spending 19%-20% of GDP is not some fluke of history unique to George Bush. That was the average for the 16 years before Obama took office, 1993 through 2008, under Presidents of both parties, in times of both peace and war.

Second, the House of Representatives is the source of federal budget legislation. Republicans led the House corresponding to budgets written for Fiscal Years 1996 through 2007. Democrats led it for FY 2008-2011 budgets. Here is a plot of federal spending over those fiscal years.

Source: White House OMB (Table 1.2).

Third, federal spending never exceeded 23.5% of GDP from 1947 through 2008. Obama will have exceeded that level in each of the four years of his term. OMB estimates federal spending to be over 25% of GDP right now. Obama is simply blowing through all levels of spending that preceded him, six decades worth, without anything resembling a return to historical levels.

Fourth, the decade discussed here, 2012-2021, will start almost three years after the Great Recession ended. Obama's above spending plan takes place after his stimulus will have been spent. Both the CBO and OMB expect that decade to be one of economic growth. As Obama is wont to remind us, we are in recovery, the private sector is adding jobs, yadda, yadda. So Obama's 2012-2021 spending plan has nothing to do with getting us out of some temporary jam caused by recession. He is growing government, pure and simple. It's what he does.

Recall these 2009 quotes from President Obama:

"It's a little hard for me to take criticism from folks about this recovery package after they've presided over a doubling of the national debt. I'm not sure they have a lot of credibility when it comes to fiscal responsibility.

"What I won't do is return to the failed theories of the last eight years that got us into this fix in the first place, because those theories have been tested and they have failed."

Obama is a funny guy. He amuses me. Like a clown.

Randall Hoven can be contacted at or via his web site,

Friday, July 15, 2011

Palin - A Confession (Source


It’s been almost three years since I, along with many others, was introduced to Governor Sarah Palin. In that time we have been saturated with coverage of her and just about everybody on the left and the right, has had the opportunity to get to know who she is and what they think of her.

At least that’s what I thought.

Admittedly, it took me some time to actually post this review of the recently released film “The Undefeated” about Sarah Palin’s meteoric rise to fame. It took time because, for numerous reasons, Sarah Palin is an emotional topic for a lot of people.

She seems to be one of those national figures that you either love with adoring affection, or hate with an uncontrollable rage. Rarely have I met someone who simply doesn’t have an opinion of her. Many pretend to, but most you can see through. At least I can. I can see through it because my opinion of her was much more specific than I ever liked to admit.

Certainly I believed that the media had been incredibly unkind to her. I believed that her stepping down as Governor was more the loss of an intense battle than simply the “giving up to go get rich” that others had labeled it. But in truth, I didn’t too much care for her, in spite of my public facade of being mostly opinion free.

I didn’t think she’d really done much in Alaska, or if she had, that it was enough to act like she was the second coming of Reagan. I thought that her contributions when being interviewed were bubble-gum and lacking of any real substance. I would never finish hearing a story about her and think, “Wow, I never thought of that before.” I just didn’t see that she had that much to offer.

There was so much media coverage of Palin, and so many people that were incredibly unfair to her, that I had been desensitized. I didn’t realize it, but I had actually developed a sort of immunity to believing anything positive about Sarah Palin. Rush Limbaugh, a personal hero of mine, sang her praises every time her name came up. In spite of that, I still felt no reason to look further into her story.

Rush had actually gotten to the point of making it a personal game to get opinions about Palin from others because he finds the dislike remarkable. I recall that one time, he was marveling that even the conservatives that don’t want her to run for president, still talk about how great they think she is, and it seemed to confuse him. I tried to call in to tell him, “Rush, they’re saying that because they’re afraid of you! They can’t admit they don’t like Palin to you because they know you do like her and you’re the voice of the movement!”

I was absolutely right that this was the case for many people, but the only reason I knew it, was because I was one of them. Hell, if I’d actually gotten through and had the opportunity to say this to him, and he’d asked me my opinion, I’m sure I would’ve acted like she was the cat’s pajamas, just to save face.

Ultimately, I thought she was the type of political force that was going to be around, needed to be treaded on carefully, but would never have anything substantial to offer to the cause of conservatism other than rallying troops which I still believed was a valuable service.

I thought she hadn’t gotten a fair shake in the media, but I felt confident that I could see through the bias and that I understood who she was, what she had done and what my opinion would probably be about her going forward.

I was entirely incorrect.

I consider the director of “The Undefeated”, Stephen Bannon, to be a friend of mine. He’s advised me in my own fledgling productions. I’ve interviewed him a handful of times on my podcast and we always talk for over an hour effortlessly. When I heard he was making this film, I immediately wanted to interview him, but I assumed that everything I knew about Palin would simply be confirmed by watching this.

We popped the film into our DVD player, and sat back to watch. One thing I had no doubts about was that Stephen Bannon would make a visually impressive, compelling film that would stir emotion. I was pleased to see that he used his trademark method of letting the people directly tied to the events tell the story (I often find narration cumbersome) adding their own particular emotions and perspectives to the narrative. These were all things that I expected and Bannon did not disappoint.

The film moves at a breakneck pace while still laying out a level of detail that brings you so close to the events, you feel like you personally experienced them.

Even had the substance not convinced me that I had Mrs. Palin pegged wrong, the film itself would most certainly have scored high for me as my all important test was passed: Did I look at my watch? No I did not.

In short, the execution of this film is excellent.

But what had me and my wife blown away by the time it was over, was the avalanche of information and perspectives that had been hidden from us over the years. As I would like for you to listen to my interview with Steve, I will not get into the substance of what caused the change. I want you to hear it for yourself.

I pride myself on my ability to know when something is baloney, almost instinctively. On Sarah Palin, I was so incredibly hoodwinked that the one word that my wife and I agreed described how we felt after watching it, was shame. Yes of course invigoration, satisfaction and all the other things you experience when watching a good film, but about how we had handled our vetting of Mrs. Palin, shame was the word that best described it.

Shame for not bothering to look up her record. Shame for not reading her story. Shame for turning the channel when she came on the tv. Shame for not listening to people that we had a great deal of respect for like Andrew Breitbart, Tammy Bruce, Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity.

As Breitbart points out in the film, the greatest shame is that while this woman was savaged to degrees you may not even realize yet, some of us sat back and let it happen. For me to buy into the media template and not defend someone who’s only offense was being a conservative, is the absolute antithesis of what I stand for, and something that I shall never allow to happen again.

I urge you to see this film when it hits theaters tomorrow. And I urge you to put aside your preconceptions about who this woman is. You don’t have to think she should be the next president to believe that the way she has been presented, even by conservatives, has been completely wrong.

Please listen to my interview with Mr. Bannon:


Download audio here

Then go see the film:

P.S. I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that there will be a private viewing of the film with Stephen Bannon in attendance, at the RedState gathering in Charleston, SC August 12th through the August 14th.  Be there.

It's Called CONgress For A Reason (this is a MUST see from Karl Denninger)

Posted 2011-07-13 20:21
Karl Denninger
Other Voices
Ignore this thread
It's Called CONgress For A Reason

Outrageous and disgusting.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Minority Feelings and Violent Facts (American Thinker) This is coming here!

July 8, 2011


By John T. Bennett

What is the most important thing about mobs of black teens attacking and seriously injuring innocent pedestrians and businesses?  The feelings of teenagers who share the race of the attackers, according to Chicago's local CBS affiliate.

That's right: Mobs of teenagers have unleashed terror in the streets of Chicago and other cities in "flash mobs," and the best thing CBS in Chicago has to say about that is that black teenagers are worried about racial profiling.

George Orwell would shudder after reading this headline: "Some Worry Mob Attacks Are Encouraging Racial Profiling."  In the story, a journalist interviews young black teens hanging out at North Avenue Beach, the scene of one of the mob attacks.  We learn that some in this group "feel targeted as potential troublemakers because of recent attack mobs in the city."  No one is alleging that profiling has occurred as a result of the flash mobs, just that it might, and that possibility bothers some teenagers.  That's the subject matter of an entire news story in our post-racial America.

The subjective opinions of black teens matter as much as those of all other teens.  But do those feelings matter enough to warrant a news story?  Compare the triviality of that story with the full scope of flash mob attacks in Chicago:

In early June, witnesses reported that "gangbangers" were pushing people off their bikes at a Chicago beach.  One witness told NBC local that "[t]hey were being rude and abusive and throwing trash around and defecating" and beating people.  Also, in just one weekend in early June, twelve attacks involving large groups of "young men" were reported.  These attacks in the normally placid North Side gained attention.  The chosen victims: a 68-year-old white doctor, a 34-year-old white insurance salesman, a Thai man, a Filipino nursing student, and a 42-year-old Japanese doctor.  All were either beaten, robbed, or both.  Those arrested: three young black men, a fact we only know because of mugshots since it is the official policy of the Chicago Tribune to censor the race of criminal mobs in its journalism, if not its commentary section. 

These attacks might just seem like fun and games, but now some of the attackers are armed.  In two incidents the first weekend in June, 8 to 15 teens boarded a bus without paying and "began hitting people," according to the Chicago Tribune.  Three of those teens are charged with armed robbery, one with unlawful use of a weapon.  A week later, a boy with no race was attacked by "a group of seven male teens," all "black," according to news reports, and one with a handgun.

There were also flash mob robberies in January 2011 when mobs of teens raided and robbed at least three stores.  In February, Loyola University Chicago warned students and staff about "flash mob offenders" stealing from retail stores near campus.  In April 2011, a group of 70 "youths" invaded a McDonald's and "created a disturbance" according to a news report.  So there is a troubling trend towards mob violence perpetrated by black teens.  Despite all of this, of all the topics CBS Chicago could have chosen, they chose to ruminate about the feelings of young black teens.

The problem with the CBS story is that there will be no corresponding story about victims' feelings.  There certainly will be no similar story about the subjective opinions of non-blacks regarding predominantly black mobs.  It's not just that there is a double standard; it's that there is a suffocating level of deception involved in these news stories.

How did we reach the point where the only group whose feelings need to be consulted are minorities?  Liberalism.  Part of liberalism is the notion that minorities need special help, attention, and heightened sensitivity.  Along with that, liberalism promotes white guilt and the peculiar desire to "help people" at any cost.  The result is that the media gives credence and coverage to mere feelings when real people are being attacked.  Of course, the worse the violence gets, the more sensitive we'll have to be.  The flash mobs and mob attacks will require the utmost sensitivity from us, as they are only going to increase.  They've already occurred in Atlanta, Kansas City, Boston, Nashville, Charlotte, St. Paul, Minnesota, Washington, D.C., Las Vegas, Columbia, South Carolina, and even in Iowa on what was called "beat whitey night."

We face the nightmarish reality of low-level ethnic conflict.  If these violent mob attacks worsen, they will be a precursor to severe racial tension.  These flash mobs already constitute the worst acts of racist violence in recent American history.  Now, how do we go from that reality to a story about black teens' feelings?  The answer is that society has twisted priorities about race and social responsibility.  Given the white guilt saturation that young people receive in our educational system, it's easy to see why the media would give such frivolous treatment to flash mobs.  One of the great successes of modern liberalism is that it has constrained our public debate about racial issues.  A sheep-like media, craven politicians, and thoughtless academics have all failed in their duty to grapple with this social problem.  With enough layers of guilt piled upon us, we can't even see the problem staring us in the face.  The media is creating an atmosphere of passive ignorance towards racial violence, and that ignorance places all of us at risk.

If there was this level of racial tension and violence in a situation where the races were reversed, there would be a nationwide clamor for healing, compensation, and awareness. Instead, we're treated to sappy stories about teenagers' feelings. "Some Worry Mob Attacks Are Encouraging Racial Profiling," says the news. One waits for the article entitled "Some Worry Mob Attacks Are Encouraging Anti-white Violence."

John Bennett (MA, University of Chicago, MAPSS '07) is a veteran, writer, and law student at Emory University living in Atlanta, GA.

Page Printed from: at July 08, 2011 - 07:37:11 AM CDT

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Do we really have a revenue problem? (from HotAir–US)



posted at 9:25 am on July 7, 2011 by Ed Morrissey
regular view

Over the last couple of days, we’ve had a good debate at Hot Air over the nature of our fiscal crisis between Jazz Shaw, and J. E. Dyer, and me.  At least we all recognize that we have a fiscal crisis; some members of Congress and “intellectual authorities” (with interesting if unreported conflicts of interest) still act as though nothing at all is wrong.  My friend Jazz wrote yesterday that we have a revenue problem as well as a spending problem in answer to my post rebutting David Brooks’ column, so let’s take a look at federal revenue to see whether Jazz’ contention holds up.

The Heritage Foundation provides this chart of federal revenue over the last 50 years in inflation-adjusted 2010 dollars, and the data is pretty clear that we have a recession problem, not a revenue problem:

Take a look at the trends here, again remembering that the data is all in 2010 dollars.  In fifty years, we have tripled overall federal revenue, and prior to the current recession/stagnation we had quadrupled it.  The current trough from the 2007 peak resulted from the fall in economic activity, not from tax cuts or any other intervention.  It’s similar to what happened in the prior trough, when the 2000-1 recession and the 9/11 attacks cut economic activity through 2003.

For that matter, look what happened to federal revenue after the much-maligned Bush tax cuts took full effect in 2003.  Economic activity expanded rapidly — and so did federal revenues.  In fact, the economy during that period boomed, and receipts from both personal and corporate taxes peaked as a result.  The Bush tax rates, as they are properly called today, did not create a revenue vacuum; they helped produce an expansion that enhanced rather than lost revenue.

Now, let’s put the data in this chart with one showing the rate of spending in inflation-adjusted 2010 dollars:

While revenues have tripled during this period, federal spending has more than quintupled.  The economic expansion of the 1990s (including the dot-com bubble) temporarily raised revenue above the spending trendline, but the slope on spending increased in the early 2000s, and practically launched spaceward in 2007 when Democrats took control of Congress.  Had spending increased at a rate of inflation from 2001 forward, we would probably not been in deficit at all.  Had it stayed at the rate of inflation from 2006 forward, we’d probably be looking at historically average deficits in terms of GDP.  But the chart shows very, very clearly that we have a recession problem combined with both a short- and long-term problem with expanding federal budgets — and the latter is the reason why we have a fiscal crisis, not some presumed revenue starvation.

It’s true that most of that spending problem comes from entitlements.  That’s why Republicans have focused their efforts on that sector of the federal budget, and not on hiking taxes.  The GOP wants to attack the recession problem by rolling back the regulatory adventurism of the Obama administration, especially in ObamaCare and at the EPA, in order to stimulate the economy and recover the revenue that we’re losing in the recession/stagflation period.  Raising taxes will have the opposite effect, and as we have seen any number of times, will not produce the revenues estimated by tax-hike advocates using static tax analysis.

Let’s confront the real problem in our fiscal crisis, and not make the recession crisis any worse than it already is.