Democrats get to take full credit for an “accomplishment” that does more harm than good.
Economy: President Obama and his acolytes are gushing over his fiscal cliff victory. But the glow isn’t likely to last long, once everyone figures out that the tax hikes Obama wrangled from Republicans only made matters worse.
Let’s look at what Obama has managed to achieve with his $620 billion tax hike on the wealthy and the boost in the payroll tax rate.
• They’ll hurt the economy. Economists are admitting the fiscal deal will slow the already sluggish economic growth.
Moody’s Analytics chief economist Mark Zandi says the higher taxes on the wealthy and the increase in payroll taxes will shave close to 1 point off GDP growth this year and result in 600,000 fewer new jobs.
Pantheon Macroeconomic Advisors chief economist Ian Shepherdson figures the deal will cut GDP by 1.5 points. And Gallup’s chief economist Dennis Jacobe says the deal has created a “higher probability of recession — just the opposite of what fixing the fiscal cliff was intended to do.”
Ramirez cartoon via Townhall
Doug Powers, Michelle Malkin: Fiscal cliff deal socks it to the rich — middle class hardest hit:
A couple of days ago I advised the pro “tax the rich” crowd to put away the party hats and kazoos after the fiscal cliff deal passed, because middle class taxes would still be going up. Not only that, but according to the Tax Policy Center, as a percentage, people earning between $30k and $200k will be taking a bigger tax hit than those making between $200k and $500k:
The national unemployment rate is 7.8% (not counting the millions who dropped out of the market.)
The Herald Online reported:
- The overall unemployment rate for 18-29 year olds for December 2012 is 11.5 percent (NSA).
- The unemployment rate for 18-29 year old African-Americans for December 2012 is 22.1 percent (NSA); the unemployment rate for 18-29 year old Hispanics for December 2012 is 12.2 percent (NSA); and the unemployment rate for 18–29 year old women for December 2012 is 10.4 percent (NSA).
Twitchy: Hope and less change: Americans cringe at first paychecks of 2013; Stunned lib asks, ‘What happened?’:
Happy New Year and happy payday! Thank goodness our “lord and savior” Obama signed the fiscal cliff bill into law after proudly proclaiming, “Under this law, more than 98 percent of Americans and 97 percent of small businesses will not see their income taxes go up.”
While PolitiFact will likely rate Obama’s statement “Mostly Swoon,” around 70 percent of Americans are going to pay more taxes in 2013. If you like your payroll taxes (and even if you don’t), you can keep them and pay two percent more than you did in 2012.
Earlier this week, many Americans realized the “fair share” fiscal cliff deal didn’t seem so fair. One Democratic Underground commenter was a little behind yesterday and was shocked — shocked! — to learn that the fiscal cliff crapwich didn’t extend the payroll tax holiday. (They don’t call ‘em DUmmies for nothing.)
Of course, Obama’s not through “raising revenues”, as Charles Krauthammer bitterly notes:
“Why,” asked the Washington Post on the eve of the final “fiscal-cliff” agreement, “is the nation’s leader not embracing and then explaining the balanced reforms the nation needs?”
Because he has no interest in them. He’s a visionary, not an accountant. He’ll pretend to care about deficits, especially while running for re-election. But now that he’s past the post, he’s free to be himself — a committed big-government social-democrat.
As he showed in his two speeches this week. After perfunctory nods to debt and spending reduction, he waxed enthusiastic about continued “investments” — i.e. spending — on education, research, roads and bridges, green energy, etc.
Having promised more government, he then promised more taxes — on “millionaires” and “companies with a lot of lobbyists,” of course. It was a bold affirmation of pre-Clintonian tax-and-spend liberalism.
Why not? He had just won Round 1: raising rates. Round 2 is to raise yet more tax revenues by eliminating deductions. After all, didn’t John Boehner offer him $800 billion of such loophole-closing revenues just a few weeks ago?
Fundamentally, Obama is a leveler. The community organizer seeks, above all, to reverse the growing inequality that he attributes to ruthless-Reaganism. Now, however, clothed in the immense powers of the presidency, he can actually engage in unadorned redistributionism. As in Tuesday night’s $620 billion wealth transfer.
The first thing that we’ve got to do is look at where we still have unfairness in the tax system and make sure that the people of influence, the billionaires and the millionaires and the corporate interests are paying their fair share.
Harry Reid’s head would literally assplode all over the Senate floor if Bush did something like this.
Thank you, Flori-DUH. You traded Allen West for this obnoxious schmo.: Katie Pavlich of Townhall: He’s Back: Alan Grayson Accuses Republicans of Terrorism on First Day of New Congress:
Yesterday, just hours after the 113th Congress officially started, Grayson was on MSNBC accusing Republicans of legislative terrorism because you know, new tone or something.
Gateway Pundit: Ladies of the Democratic Party Pose For Photo on Capitol Steps:
Weasel Zippers: Pelosi Releases Photoshopped Photo Of Female Lawmakers…
Unfortunately, four members were late to the photo shoot.
“Please note this version has the four Members who were late photo-shopped in,” Pelosi spokesperson Drew Hammill wrote in an email to news outlets Thursday evening. In a subsequent email to Poynter, Hammill confirmed that the four latecomers were placed in the rear of the group.
Krauthammer “Democrats realize Bush architecture after 9/11 was tremendous asset and kept us safe”
I’ve gotta take issue with Krauthammer’s analysis. Contrary to what he suggests, the Democrats have learned nothing on how to fight terror. It never mattered to them whether GW Bush’s policies were effective or not. Keeping Americans safe was always a secondary concern for them. They are motivated by one thing and one thing only – power – how to attain it and how to keep it.. During the Bush years, their primary enemy was George W. Bush and so the organized left was dispatched to protest every move he made in the War on Terror. Now that the left is in power, we hear not a peep from these same loons about renditions or Obama’s drone savagery. You’re more likely to see Code Pink protesting Wall Street and income inequality and supporting Hamas dressed as vaginas then protesting anything the Moonbat Messiah does.
Speaking of W, Victor Davis Hanson has a good piece in NRO: Bush Reconsidered:
At times the venom accorded Bush in popular culture reached absurd — and even sick — levels. Alfred A. Knopf, for example, infamously published Nicholson Baker’s Checkpoint, a pathetic riff on shooting Bush. Gabriel Range’s unhinged 2006 “docudrama,” The Death of a President, focused on an imagined assassination of President Bush (imagine the outcry should any filmmaker today update that topos). A sick Charlie Brooker op-ed in the Guardian called for another John Wilkes Booth or Lee Harvey Oswald to kill Bush. Jonathan Chait of The New Republic more or less permanently ruined his reputation by writing an adolescent rant on “the case for Bush hatred,” one that began creepily with “I hate President George W. Bush.” Try substituting another president’s name for Bush’s and see what the reaction of The New Republic would be.
Charles Krauthammer remembers this well, he’s the one who coined the term, “Bush Derangement Syndrome.”
Little more need be said about the hysteria over the Bush-Cheney anti-terrorism protocols, other than that most of their critics went silent when the former critic President Obama, quite mysteriously, embraced or even expanded almost all of them — apparently on the post-election realization that something that had prevented another 9/11 for a subsequent seven years should not be summarily ended. Guantanamo is still open. Renditions and tribunals remain in effect. Predator-drone missions vastly increased under Obama, and are such a part of the current landscape that the president can joke about siccing drones on any potential suitors of his two daughters. The Patriot Act and its subsidiaries have become institutionalized. Meanwhile, early grand talk by the Obama administration of trying arch-terrorist Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in a civilian court, indicting CIA officials for enhanced interrogations, and moving detained terrorists from Guantanamo to the Midwest all have come to nothing. Perhaps the chief anti-terrorism difference between the Bush and Obama administrations, at least as it has pertained to the vast majority of suspected terrorists, is that the former sought to capture and interrogate them, while the latter prefers blowing them up — along with anyone else caught in the general vicinity of a strike — through remote-control Hellfire missiles.
The election was deeply unsettling. Governor Romney basically threw it away. Just tossed in the trash can. He totally folded in debate three and tendered the election to Mr. Obama. Benghazi should have been the tragic gift that won him the election. He handed it back unopened to Mr. Obama. When his son, Tagg, recently came out and said that Gov. Romney basically did not even want to be President in the first place, I felt sick. Why did he bother to waste all of our time and hopes and money? What is going on with him? Or was his son just confused? The whole episode was disturbing.
Ann Coulter says she’s bored with politics (I hear ya, sista!) – so she’s writing about the latest inventions that annoy her – she sounds like a sort of female version of Andy Rooney, here.
I am bored with politics, refuse to pay attention to the news and am watching only True Crime TV shows and Turner Classic Movies these days. With the Democrats controlling the Senate and presidency, nothing good can possibly come out of Washington for at least another two years. So I thought I’d start the new year with something useful, like a short list of bad inventions.
(1) SILENT DISHWASHERS
Are people installing dishwashers next to their beds? I’ve checked my “Top 500 Daily Irritations” list and dishwasher noise is not on it.
Gotta love her.
With Benghazi still burning in the rear-view mirror of its wobbly foreign policy, the Obama administration is set to ship the Islamic Brotherhood government of Egypt 10 F16 fighter jets and 200 Abrams tanks and charge it to U.S. taxpayers, according to a Fox News report.
An independent investigation revealed the Obama administration failed to fortify the U.S. Libyan embassy that was destroyed in September; a lack of funding was among the reasons cited for the U.S. embassy being grossly under defended.
The $213 million gift to the disheveled Islamic-led government was signed during the now deposed Hosni Mubarak administration. Mubarak is facing trial and the Islamic Brotherhood is not a U.S. ally. Nevertheless, the Obama administration is prepared to arm them to the teeth with cutting-edge tanks and planes.
Gateway Pundit: Egyptian Lawyers: Muslim Brotherhood Took BILLIONS From Obama:
Egyptian lawyers today accused the Muslim Brotherhood of taking 10 billion Egyptian pounds (U.S. $1.5 billion) from the Obama Administration.
ELEVEN YEARS AGO, al-Qaeda terrorist Richard Reid tried to blow up American Airlines Flight 63 with a bomb hidden in his shoes. As a result, air travelers to this day must remove their shoes to pass through security at US airports.
In 2006, terrorists plotted to destroy as many as 10 planes flying from London to North America using peroxide-based liquid explosives smuggled in their carry-on luggage. So passengers now must limit any liquids they carry through security checkpoints to minuscule containers sealed in clear plastic bags.
On Christmas Day in 2009, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab tried to blow up a Northwest Airlines flight over Detroit by means of an explosive device sewn into his underwear. The government’s response: full-body X-ray scans to detect even contraband concealed in one’s groin.
Our irritating, inconvenient airport security rules are one reflection of a common view that the way to prevent evil in this world — in this case, the evil of jihadist terrorism — is to intercept the instruments evildoers use. Thus, if the 9/11 hijackers used box cutters to carry out their airborne atrocities, box cutters must be barred from subsequent flights. If other terrorists find other means of committing brutal acts, we bar those means as well.
This fixation on stopping bad things — as opposed to stopping bad people or bad behavior — goes beyond keeping air travel safe from al-Qaeda. On the international stage, it shows up in campaigns to reduce strategic arsenals and destroy nuclear warheads, regardless of the moral caliber of the governments possessing them. In schools, zero-tolerance drug and alcohol policies have been applied so rigidly, USA Today observes, that “kids have been kicked out of school for possession of Midol, Tylenol, Alka Seltzer, cough drops, and Scope mouthwash.”
More recently, the shrill demands for more restrictions on guns in the wake of the Newtown massacre have been a classic illustration of the phenomenon.
A second business owner in the state of Missouri has won its battle against the Obama HHS mandate as a federal court granted it a reprieve from the Obama Administration’s contraceptive and abortion drug mandate.
The U.S. District Court for Western Missouri issued a preliminary injunction prohibiting enforcement of the law against American Pulverizer Company of St. Louis. The firm is owned by Paul and Henry Griesedieck and members of the family are pro-life Christians who don’t want to be forced to pay for drugs for their employees that may cause abortions.
In their lawsuit, the Griesediecks contend that compliance with the Obamacare mandate would force them to violate their religious and moral beliefs. In their lawsuit, the Griesediecks state that “it would be sinful for us to pay for services that have a significant risk of causing the death of embryonic lives.”
U.S. District Judge Richard Dorr ruled that the plaintiffs were likely to be able to prove that Obamacare “substantially burdens their exercise of religion…Plaintiffs must either pay for a health plan that includes drugs and services to which they religiously object or incur fines.”
Meanwhile Hobby Lobby continues its fight against the mandate.
The Becket Fund: Support Hobby Lobby in the Fight for Religious Liberty:
The Green family respects the religious convictions of all Americans, including those who do not agree with them. All they are asking is for the government to give them the same respect by not forcing them to violate their religious beliefs. Read more.
The Becket Fund is proud to stand with Hobby Lobby – as well as our other five clients challenging this unconstitutional mandate. But, our services are rendered at no cost and we’re up against the virtually unlimited resources of the federal government.
Help support the fight today.
The Green family isn’t only fighting for its right to religious liberty, but ours, too. Send a thank you note to the Greens letting them know you’re standing by their side.
Government forced Hobby Lobby to choose:
Violate your conscience and stay in business or remain faithful to your conscience and be penalized up to 1.3 million dollars per day. Hobby Lobby chose to sue the government for their right – and ours – to operate their business in full accord with their faith. Read more about the case here.
The CEO of Hobby Lobby has penned a tragic letter about the loss of religious freedom and liberty in America. The Christian crafts company has been forced by the Obama administration to pay for drugs for its employees in their health care plan that may cause abortions.
Doing so violates the religious freedom of the founders and owners of Hobby Lobby, but the firm has, so far, been unsuccessful in getting courts to give it an exemption while its lawsuit against the HHS mandate continues.
Tens of thousands of Americans have committed to support the Christian crafts store Hobby Lobby on Saturday, January 5 after courts have refused to issued an ruling stopping the Obama HHS mandate.
Support Hobby Lobby on Saturday, January 5:
I would avoid this store at all costs: Obama’s inaugural team launches souvenir store:
President Barack Obama’s inaugural team is opening an online and brick-and-mortar store to sell souvenirs including a commemorative poster by famed artist Chuck Close. The Presidential Inaugural Committee launched the online store Thursday. A retail store a few blocks from the White House was scheduled to open Jan. 11. The goods, ranging from $2.50 rulers to $30 champagne flutes to a $7,500 medallion set, also will be sold at some Washington hotels around the Jan. 21 inauguration.
For only $7,500 you can own this exquisite Medallion Set that distinguishes Obama’s strong Presidential jawline from Biden’s weak, Vice Presidential one:
Paul Kengor, The American Spectator: Dupes of the Year 2012:
Dupes comprise a long, dubious tradition in American history. Over 200 years ago, George Washington warned the nation about “dupes” in his historic Farewell Address. Such warnings would echo from the founding of the republic through the Cold War. During the Cold War, “dupe,” like the associated word, “useful idiot” — attributed to Vladimir Lenin — became an everyday term. Dupes were legion during the Cold War, a unique breed of (largely) left-leaning Americans who, unwittingly, allowed or enabled themselves to be deceived or misled by communist propagandists. Communists were natural liars, and liberals/progressives were their primary suckers. In fact, Obama’s communist mentor, Frank Marshall Davis, excelled at this crass craft. In all, there were so many dupes during the Cold War that I’ve often said that my book on the subject could be the first in a multi-volume set.
But dupes did not end with the Cold War — hardly. Consider any number of exhibits over just the last four years:
Remember the Stupak Democrats? There was Congressman Bart Stupak of Michigan, who, on March 24, 2010, along with 12 other beaming pro-life House Democrats, stood aside President Barack Obama as he signed an executive order promising to prevent abortion funding in Obama-care. They made another group of dupes, the social-justice champions at Notre Dame who gave Obama an honorary degree a year earlier, look shrewd as serpents by comparison.
Dupes come in many shapes and sizes. Who was the biggest dupe of 2012?
That’s no easy call. To name a group, I’m partial to the majority of professing Roman Catholics who once again elected Barack Obama, thereby obliviously authorizing Obama’s HHS mandate and voting to violate their own religious liberty.
Michelle Obama recently revealed that she and President Obama don’t give Christmas gifts to each other. They merely say, “We’re in Hawaii,” and that’s Christmas gift enough.
But actually the present is from taxpayers, and it’s an expensive one.
The total cost to taxpayers of Obama’s vacations to Hawaii since becoming president is likely in excess of $20 million, and possibly much, much more. During a time of budget deficits that threaten the nation’s security and its future, the Obamas have chosen to maintain a “family tradition” and vacation halfway around the world instead of finding far cheaper alternatives closer to home.
The $20 million figure is based on estimates of the cost of the four Hawaii vacations the Obamas have taken during Christmastime 2009-2012.
Forget the fact that this tax-the-rich hypocrite tried to save himself millions by jamming the sale through before taxes rose after the end of the year; forget the fact that a former vice president of the United States sold out to an openly anti-American cable network embraced by terrorists; forget the fact that Mr. Global Warming sold out to a network funded solely with oil money… In order to personally pocket a reported $100 million, Gore resorted to racial blackmail:
Al Gore’s Current TV was never popular with viewers, but it was a hit where it counted: with cable and satellite providers. When he co-founded the channel in 2005, Mr. Gore managed to get the channel piped into tens of millions of households — a huge number for an untested network — through a combination of personal lobbying and arm-twisting of industry giants.
He called on those skills again after deciding in December to sell Current TV to Al Jazeera for $500 million. To preserve the deal — and the estimated $100 million he would personally receive — he went to some of those same distributors, who were looking for an excuse to drop the low-rated channel, and reminded them that their contracts with Current TV called it a news channel. Were the distributors going to say that an American version of Al Jazeera didn’t qualify, possibly invoking ugly stereotypes of the Middle Eastern news giant?
“The lawyers for the carriers couldn’t find their way around it,” said a person briefed on the negotiations who described them on condition of anonymity.
Al Gore is in my top five of the worst American political villains of the past 100 years. He really is a nasty piece of work.
John Hawkins has The 20 Most Annoying Liberals of 2012 (10th Annual):
Honorable Mentions: Bill Ayers, Bob Beckel, Joy Behar, Eric Boehlert, Margaret Cho, Candy Crowley, Code Pink, Lena Dunham, Dianne Feinstein, Ruth Bader-Ginsburg, Kathy Griffin, Eric Holder, Jesse Jackson, Ezra Klein, Rachel Maddow, Bill Maher, Bill Press, Ed Schultz, Al Sharpton, Jon Stewart, and Jeremiah Wright.
20) Chris Hayes: He’s a smarmy, politically correct beta male who would probably be irritating even if he wasn’t talking about politics. If you had to pick the MSNBC host most likely to hold Rachel Maddow’s purse while she shops, it would be Hayes.
Defining quote:“(It’s) very difficult to talk about the war dead and the fallen without invoking valor, without invoking the words ‘heroes.’ I feel … uncomfortable about the word hero because it seems to me that it is so rhetorically proximate to justifications for more war.” — Chris Hayes
19) Mike Malloy: He’s one of the biggest liberal radio hosts, which is kind of like being one of the world’s fastest Sumo wrestlers. That begs the question: If Malloy says something insane and no one hears it, should we care?
Defining quote:“These teabag bastards, who by the way, I just wish they would all go away, or like in Passover, I just wish there was an angel of the Lord that would pass over, instead of killing the first born in all the households of Egypt, just wipe out all the teabaggers. Just, you know, the terrible swift sword, just (Malloy emulates sound of sword cutting repeatedly through the air) lop their heads off.” — Mike Malloy
Red Alert Politics: Red Alert Politics ‘Liar of the Year’: And the winner is . . . Barack Obama:
President Obama captured almost 63 percent of votes out of a total of almost 2,900 votes, outpacing his closest competitor Democratic National Committee (DNC chair), Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida, by 52 percentage points.
What’s the reason for Obama’s landslide victory? Where do we start?
Let;s start with the Obama administration’s Benghazi scandal, during which he repeatedly contradicted not only members of his administration, but himself. First his administration said the the Libya attacks were a result of the video, then he reportedly said they were terrorism, then he again blamed the video — back and forth with no clear answer. And it took the President three months to admit there was any sort of “sloppiness” involved on the part of his administration in the security at the Benghazi consulate.
He also claimed, among other things, that he was reelected because the majority of Americans support tax increases on the rich— which he can’t possibly know — that Mitt Romney wanted to ban abortions and that Stephanie Cutter never said Romney was a felon or liar.
And don’t even get us started on the deceitful, manipulative or downright inaccurate ads released by his campaign during the 2012 election, all of which he had to lawfully approve.
Washington Free Beacon: White House War on Women Escalates: