People have long known that President Obama's plan to increase income taxes on higher-earning individuals is a budgetary nonsense as there simply are not enough people making more than $200,000 and families making more than $250,000 to bring the deficit down in a meaningful way.
In an important followup to this point, the Wall Street Journal looks at how the only way for the federal budget to even begin to move away from deficits is through either spending reductions (anathema to the left) or tax increases. There is no alternative to raising taxes on the middle class if the budget will not be reduced:
Over the past several years, even as the circulation and influence of traditional media has declined, there has been an explosion in the numbers of journalists producing sois-disant "fact-checking" pieces. As the god that failed (the media) has become tarnished, a new one ("fact-checking") has been set up.
A book that's going to cause a lot of controversy is "No Easy Day," a first-hand account by one of the Navy SEALs who was part of the team that killed Osama bin Laden.
The Associated Press got an early copy of the book and reported that the author, Matt Bissonnette, says that the terrorist leader was killed when he looked out the window and was already dead when they entered the compound bin Laden was living in at the time. This is in direct contradiction to Obama Administration accounts of his death.
Since Wisconsin Representative Paul Ryan was announced as Mitt Romney's running mate, the situation in the various states seems to have changed a bit. Ryan's home state of Wisconsin has tightened up quite a bit, moving from solid Obama to a tossup. Mitt Romney's birth state of Michigan has also become more competitive:
Today's starter topic: How much credence do you give this report that President Obama is pressuring European countries to keep heavily indebted Greece in the Euro zone until after Election Day so as to not put his own re-election at risk? Would he do such a thing? And would booting Greece from the euro really have any effect on politics in this country?
Young Americans, who were a key component of candidate Barack Obama's election strategy in 2008, have been having an awful time of it lately. According to two separate surveys, many young adults 18 to 29 are stuck in the awful employment market. The majority have a bachelor's degree but are not in jobs that require a college degree.
Interestingly enough, the jobs which traditionally had been filled by recent college graduates have been going to older Americans, meaning that many are stuck in underemployment:
Sometimes, the decisions made by government bureaucrats are so stupid, it's hard to believe that they're real. Today's case in point: The Department of Justice has decided to make an effort to find attorneys with "severe intellectual" and "psychiatric disabilities."
Considering that this is the same agency that brought us the ill-conceived Fast and Furious and its subsequent cover-up, perhaps the severely intellectually disabled lawyers have already started work.
For just forty years now, the world has officially been doomed to destruction. Sure, we've always had religious cult leaders pronouncing the death of civilization due to the sin-of-the-moment but 1972 represented a different kind of doom and gloom: a wholly secular kind pretending to be scientific.
One of the persistent themes on the campaign trail for many liberals is the idea, best exemplified by President Obama's "you didn't build that" remark and also the anti-capitalist rants of Massachusetts Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren, that people who work hard for a living somehow are undeserving of their success. That attitude likely originates from the mistaken belief that cronyism, collusion between private industry and government, is capitalism.
Unfortunately, more cronyism is the inevitable product of the expansion of the regulatory state. The more power bureaucrats and politicians have over business, the more likely business is to become interested in synergy with the government. Below the fold is a video from the Crony Chronicles, a new website which looks to spread awareness of this growing problem.
The far left has already started a campaign to misinform the public about Paul Ryan's views about Medicare and how he supposedly wants to destroy the program. (The irony, of course, is that President Obama actually reduced funding of the program by $700 billion as part of his healthcare law.)
Be that as it may, for those wondering what Ryan actually says about Medicare, National Review provides a helpful primer on the congressman's views, noting particularly that the newest Medicare proposal he's touting actually is quite a bit different from his older one:
According to a news release from the Mitt Romney presidential campaign, the soon-to-be Republican nominee will announce his running mate later today.
Word has it that the likely pick is Wisconsin representative Paul Ryan although such predictions have been known to be wrong in the past. In 2008, Minnesota's Tim Pawlenty was expected to be John McCain's running mate. Who do you think it will be?
Even though President Obama's remark that business entrepreneurs "didn't build" their own successes was made weeks ago, it is still continuing to harm him among voters. Now, it is also starting to harm other Democrats besides Obama:
Over the weekend, NASA landed another probe onto the surface of our neighboring planet Mars. The rover inside the probe, named Curiosity, has begun transmitting its first images of the surface back. They aren't too exciting just yet due to some equipment not being set up yet, but expect many more interesting ones over its two-year lifespan.
That leads to the question: Do you believe space exploration should be a government funded enterprise or one that is turned over to the private sector? Second question: Considering how much President Obama likes to spend money, why has he cut the NASA budget so much?
Despite the fact that his economic policies have been a dismal failure, President Obama seems to think they're working. Could the reason for his persistence be that he has almost no experience with the regular, private-sector workforce? That is what House Speaker John Boehner thinks, saying that Obama has "never even had a real job, for God’s sake."
Given the arguable truth of the remark and its potency, do you expect liberal journalists to report it to denounce him or will they ignore it while complaining about "civility" generally?
With nearly all the votes in, Ted Cruz has prevailed in a run-off primary race in Texas, defeating David Dewhurst, the current lieutenant governor of the state. Once considered a longshot, Cruz won quite handily. How much do you think the media will report his victory?
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is being reamed by liberals in the media for a supposed gaffe in stating that Israel is much more successful economically than territories under Palestinian control because of its "culture."
Rich Lowry explains how that is perfectly true in a piece at National Review Online today. The long and short of it is that Western classically liberal values like the rule of law, representative democracy, religious tolerance/diversity, free speech and secure property rights are hallmarks of Israel's civil society that are woefully lacking in both the West Bank and Gaza Strip:
Not only did NBC's Bob Costas fail to honor the slain 1972 Israeli Olympians with a moment of silence when he had the opportunity as he covered Friday's Opening Ceremonies at the London Olympics, but Costas has offended Britons with his decision to air a Michael Phelps interview rather than televise a tribute to the victims of the July 7, 2005 terrorist attacks in London.
The Daily Mail of London has the story (excerpted below the page break):
Are public figures allowed to have an opinion anymore? Are private companies allowed to donate to the charitable causes of their own choosing, no matter how unfashionable they might be?
Shockingly, the ladies from “The View” say yes (with differing levels of enthusiasm) to both questions. On July 26, “The View” addressed the media-manufactured controversy arising from comments Chick-Fil-A President and COO Dan Cathy made more than a week ago. “We are very much supportive of the family – the biblical definition of the family unit,” Cathy told the Baptist Press.
Sometimes, the blog posts just write themselves. The city of Chicago is famous for its political corruption, now it's becoming known as a perfect example of liberal hypocrisy.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel has made news supporting a city councilman's attempt to block fast food restaurant Chick-fil-A from opening another store in the area, claiming that the chain's beliefs "are not Chicago values." At the same time, Emanuel is welcoming with open arms anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan and his Nation of Islam in an effort to reduce crime.
You've probably noticed, but we've made the official transition over to our new, Disqus-powered comments on our blog postings. Please use this thread to ask any questions you still have about the switchover. I will be keeping an eye on it today and answering your inquiries.
Note: To make things easier, this blog post will allow for commenting by registered users of the old comment system.