Foreign Policy Republican Debate Night

The economy is in tatters.

The logic of getting rid of Barack Obama and begging Hillary Clinton to rescue the corruption known as the Obama Dimocratic Party is increasingly apparent even to the dimmest minds. For too many, the fate of the country is an afterthought.

Egypt, Iran, Syria, the entire Middle East is on the brink of holy hell. The United States, the world, can’t take much more of Barack Obama. Obama has got to go – the sooner the better.

So it is time for another Republican debate. This one is to discuss foreign policy and national security. The Heritage Foundation/AEI foreign policy debate will be broadcast on CNN at 8:00 p.m. ET.


109 thoughts on “Foreign Policy Republican Debate Night

  1. Intros by the candidates first. Santorum hits Obama, Paul does his national security thing, Perry mentions his wife asks for votes, Romney says he too is a father and is afraid of Obama making America weak, Cain says he’s a businessman and that Obama has downgraded national security, Newt informs us this is what he has devoted his lifetime to, Bachmann mentions family members who have served in the Armed Forces and sends thanks and love to those currently serving, Huntsman says we have much to be thankful for and mentions his wife and kids.

    Q (from Ed Meese for Heritage): A long range extension of Patriot Act?

    Newt: Key distinction Americans should make is between criminal law and national security requirements. Danger is a menace for the rest of our lives. Will not change, but strengthen Patriot Act. Has spent years “studying this stuff.”

    Paul: Patriot Act undermines our liberty. We should deal with terrorism with criminal laws. Founders warned us not to sacrifice liberty for security.

    Newt: Timothy McVeigh succeeded. Our laws should be to prevent the crime.

    Paul: Only a police state can protect us from all crimes.

    Bachmann: I support the Constitution and to protect the American people is the main job of the president. Modern technology has changed the needs for law enforcement. Obama gives Miranda warnings to terrorists.

    Huntsman: We have a name brand to protect based on our values. We are a nation of values. We must balance security with our values. We in Washington need partnerships with governors and mayors.

    Q: TSA patdowns?

    Romney: We need better technology. Newt is right. Crime and war are not the same thing. Different laws apply to crime and to war. Life, liberty and property must be protected.

    Perry: Privatize TSA. No unions for TSA. Patriot Act must be strengthened if needed. But this administration has failed in gathering intelligence to stop terrorist attacks.

    Santorum: We need profiling. TSA pat-downs cost too much money and bother the public. Lincoln suspended rights when the nation was in danger.

    Q: Who gets profiled?

    Santorum: Those who commit terrorism. That includes young radical Muslims.

    Paul: What about someone who looks like Timothy McVeigh? Terrorism is a tactic. We must protect the rule of law.

    Cain: We can do better with what I call “targeted identification.” I support the Patriot Act. We need to kill the terrorists first.

    Q: More scrutiny for Muslims?

    Cain: No, allow the intelligence agencies to give us the right approach.

    Q: Will an expanded drone campaign in Pakistan help?

    Huntsman: We need to get our house in order. Term limits. Pakistan is a nation state headed to failure. Expand the drone campaign. But we don’t need more troops in Afghanistan.

  2. Q: Aid to Pakistan?

    Bachmann: Pakistan is a shelter for terrorists. The Chinese are trying to play in Pakistan too. But Pakistan does share intelligence with us. Our money to Pakistan helps Pakistan gather intelligence so I would keep providing aid.

    Perry: They have showed us time after time they cannot be trusted. I would not send them one penny until they show us they are allies. That is the way to change foreign policy.

    Bachmann: That is highly naive. There are nuclear weapons in Pakistan that Al Quaeda might get. We must have some sort of presence there.

    Perry: I think we should be engaged there but we should not write blank checks.

    Bachmann: We are not just writing blank checks.

    Q: $2 billion a week in Afghanistan?

    Romney: We can’t just write off that part of the world. We need to draw them to modernity. Hand off security to Afghanistan eventually.

    Huntsman: We need to discuss with the American people what we have done in Afghanistan. The Taliban have been destroyed. What is the endpoint?

    Romney: Are you suggesting we just get out next week?

    Huntsman: Draw down of troops. Prepare for worldwide counterterrorism.

    Romney: The commanders on the ground have made an assessment not to pull troops out so rapidly and I stand with them. This is not a time to cut and run.

    Huntsman: The president is commander in chief.

    Romney: The commander in chief makes the finally decision with input from those commanders on the ground. We could lose Afghanistan and Pakistan.

    Newt: The heart of the American dilemma is that killing Bin Laden in Pakistan led to a new low in American/Pakistan relations. We need to tell the Paks to lead or get out of the way.

    Santorum: We are fighting a war against radical Islam. They think we are weak and politics will interfere. Obama validates their views. Huntsman validates their views. This problem will soon be at our shores.


  3. Q: If Israel attacks Iran, would you help or support?

    Cain: First make sure they have a plan for success. Iran has nuclear facilities in a mountainous region. If the mission is clear I would support.

    Paul: No. I don’t expect it to happen. The retired Mossad leader thinks it is not a smart thing to do. No unilateral attack. If it did why would Israel want our help? It’s Israel’s business. Israel should take care of itself. We don’t even have a treaty with Israel. Israel is capable of taking care of itself. We should be cautious absent a declaration by Congress.

    Cain: I said it was unlikely because it is difficult to do. If we pull out of Afghanistan Iran will move in.

    Q: Any set of sanctions that could stop Iran?

    Perry: Absolutely. Sanction the Iran National Bank. Use every sanction. Shut down their economy. Bring Syria into the mix as well. Get a no fly zone above Syria. Another show of lack of leadership by Obama.

    Q: Wouldn’t that sanction hurt oil sales?

    Newt: We need a massive all sources oil production effort in the U.S. We need a strategy of replacing the Iranian regime with minimal use of force. We need to be more strategic, less tactical. We should sanction gas supplies and sabotage their gas refinery.

    Bachmann: Energy independence. Every decision Obama has made puts America in unilateral disarmament. Iran states they plan to strike Israel which is why we have to defend Israel. This is not just an idle threat. Obama has failed the American people. Obama met with them with no preconditions.

    Q (from Paul Wolfowitz): Aid to Africa for AIDS and malaria etc.?

    Santorum: Africa is fertile ground for terrorists. Aid for Africa is essential. Zero out is not smart. America is the shining city on the hill.

    Cain: Look at the whole problem. What are the results?

    Paul: Aid is worthless. We take money from poor people in this country to give money to rich people in other countries. Endless wars and endless foreign aid means endless budget deficits. The biggest threat to our national security is our financial condition.

    Romney: They are going to cut a trillion dollars out of the military to give it to Obamacare. Cut Obamacare.

    Paul: They are not cutting anything out of anything. It’s a road to disaster.

    Romney: The first $350 million will cut long range bombers and troops to 50,000. On Israel and Iran we are talking about the failure of Obama. Obama’s agenda is to be friendly to our foes and arrogant with our friends. We need to show Israel we are friends. My first trip as president will be to Israel.

  4. Q: Are cuts to the defense budget unacceptable?

    Newt: No. Technology changes every six months. We need to open up enough oil fields to collapse the price of oil in six months.

    Q: Bomb Iran nuclear facilities?

    Newt: Only if it is a bombing campaign designed to collapse the regime too.

    Q: Defense cuts?

    Huntsman: We have a trust deficit. No trust for congress or wall street. Everything must be on the table to lower the deficit including defense. Economic policy is a national security issue. Foreign policy is determined by economics. Counter-terrorism is here to stay.

    Q: Supercommittee failed. Automatic cuts? Would you compromise with Democrats?

    Perry: No surprise super committee failed. Obama is not a leader. I signed 6 balanced budgets after working with the legislators. I wore this country’s uniform. It was offensive to me that Obama puts young lives in jeopardy. Even Leon Panetta agrees. Panetta should resign in protest.

    Perry: I had to work with Democrats for ten years so that is not a problem for me. I would have been working day in day out to get to a solution. We should make the legislature part time.

    Q: If you get 75% of what you want would you make a deal with Democrats?

    Santorum: Depends on what that 75% is. If it makes things worse then no. You don’t undermine the ability of this economy to grow. Obama divides group from group to win the election. Obama has poisoned the well. I compromised on welfare reform.

  5. Q: Even the super committee proposed cuts are a drop in the bucket. What entitlement reforms would you make?

    Newt: Yesterday I outlined a Social Security reform plan based on Chile. 72% of Chile’s GDP is in savings. With the entitlement reforms we can avoid austerity and pain.

    Bachmann: I said it was time to draw a line in the sand during the debt ceiling debate. We are now $15 trillion in debt. All the super committee was supposed to do was cut $1.4 trillion over ten years. We’ve sending our money and power to China. Our money grows China’s military.


  6. Thus far Gingrich and Romney are getting the most time. A lot of questions have yet to be asked. The European crisis comes immediately to mind.

  7. Q: Mexican border – a national security threat – what to do about drug cartels?

    Perry: I think it is time for a new Monroe Doctrine. Countries like Iran, as well as Hamas and Hezbollah are moving to take advantage of the Mexican border security problems. As president, within 12 months that border will be shut down.

    Paul: The drug war is another war we should cancel. We worry about the borders of Pakistan and Afghanistan and not our own borders. Mandating free health care to the states draws in illegals.

    Q: Legalize drugs?

    Paul: Sick people should be allowed marijuana. The federal government is overriding state laws. Alcohol is a deadly drug too. The kids can still get the drugs.

    Cain: Yes. An insecure border is a national security threat. Many Mexican believe Mexico is a failed state. We must secure the border, enforce the existing laws, clean up the bureaucracy to help legal immigrants, empower the states to do what the federal government is not doing.

    Q: Legal immigration?

    Santorum: I’m the son of immigrants. Legal immigrants are good for America.

    Q: You voted for amnesty?

    Newt: We should provide an N1 visa program for every graduate. I voted for Simpson/Missoli but the promises of that approach were not kept. Ultimately, after a guest worker program and a program that examines those who are here, you get to be legal but no path to citizenship.

    Bachmann: I don’t agree that you make 11 million workers legal. That is amnesty.

    Newt: I don’t see a reason to punish those who came here at age three and join the military. I am not for amnesty.

    Bachmann: The Speaker would make the 11 million illegals, legal.

    Q: Should some be allowed to stay?

    Romney: Amnesty is a magnet. The right course is to welcome those who come here legally. I agree with the visa’s for graduates. Turn off the magnets to illegal immigration however. People respond to incentives.

    Newt: I do not believe that the people of the United States will separate families and expel someone who has committed no crimes for 25 years. I’ll take the heat for my position.

    Perry: We need to stop the magnets. What matters is to secure the border. After we secure the border we can put something in place that keeps those families together. Without border security this is just an intellectual exercise.

    Romney: Secure the border. I won’t draw lines as to who gets to stay and who must go. No amnesty.


  8. Q: Syria [finally]. What are American interests in Syria and what would you do? Do you support Perry’s call for a no fly zone?

    Cain: No. We need a strong military and a strong economy. This administration has failed miserably.

    Perry: No fly zone is one of the options to pressure that regime. Covert and other means are necessary. A no fly zone gives the opportunity to the dissidents and the military. But what this is all about is really Iran. We need to be serious in Iran and in Syria if we are serious.

    Q: Is ‘Arab Spring’ a good thing?

    Huntsman: History will tell. We missed the Persian spring because of Obama. Iran will soon have enough materials to make a nuclear weapon. Sanctions won’t work because China and Russia won’t cooperate. Iran wants a nuclear weapon and has learned from Libya not to give up nukes.

    Q: Somalia?

    Paul: Al Qaeda was inspired by bases in Saudi Arabia. Al Qaeda responds to things like no fly zones. We should practice a policy of good will. We don’t do anything to any other country we don’t want done to us. Let’s mind our own business.

    Romney: Obama’s foreign policy is that America is just another nation. I believe in exceptional ism and in being the strongest nation in the world. Obama believes in an Asian century. I believe in an American century. This is not the time for a no fly zone in Syria.

    Perry: Syria and Iran are a partnership. If we want to help Israel we need to get serious about Syria and Iran right now.

    Q: Unexpected events?

    Santorum: Latin America and the spread of socialism as well as terrorists getting a foothold.

    Paul: I worry most about overreaction. The Taliban want to kill us over there, in their country, just like we would.

    Perry: Communist China. Communist China is headed for the dustbin of history. Forced abortions.

    Romney: Long term it is China. Now it is Iran going nuclear. Santorum is right that Latin America is the unexpected problem with terrorists attacking from there.

    Cain: Cyber attacks.

    Newt: A weapon of mass destruction in American cities. Pulse attacks. Cyber attacks. We are unprepared for these attacks.

    Bachmann: Obama is giving the peace away. The threat is now in the United States.

    Huntsman: China has problems. Our problem will be debt, trust deficit, jobs, economy.

    IT’S OVER.

  9. The big takes from tonight: Newt and immigration – Perry on No Fly Zone.

    It was a very good debate and as fair as we’ve seen. CNN did well again.

  10. Just to make you think how lucky we are in the USA.

    Russia: a bill to silence millions

    Political leaders in St. Petersburg are about to vote on law that will make it illegal for any person to write a book, publish an article or speak in public about being gay, lesbian or transgender. The ruling party led by President Medvedev and Prime Minister Putin could make millions of people invisible with the stroke of a pen.

    Human rights defenders around the country are doing everything they can to stop it. They are risking their freedom to organize flashmobs and protests, but they are afraid that it won’t be enough.

    Right now, the world needs to speak up and tell Russian authorities to drop the bill. Join this call to leaders around the world to reach out to their counterparts in the Russian government – and ask them to reject this discriminatory and anti-democratic law.


    Disgraceful and the world will ignore it.

  11. If Russia does such a thing, they will be regressing their people back centuries. Using this opportunity as an example for further censure i.e. ethnic cleansing-

  12. Occupy protester hands President Obama a note ( staged- everything about Obama is staged )

    The Occupy movement trailed President Obama to New Hampshire today, where protestors briefly interrupted his jobs speech at a Manchester high school.

    Using the so-called “human microphone” method, protestors shouted Obama down just minutes into his speech, calling attention to the arrest of peaceful protestors at Occupy movements around the country.

    They were quickly countered by students, who began chanting, “Obama! Obama!”

    But after the speech, a member of the movement got close enough to Obama as the president was shaking hands with members of the audience pass him a note, which was photographed by the Associated Press’ Charles Dharapak:

    Another staged incident!

    See link for note:

  13. Has Carolyn Maloney lost her marbles? Or is she so deep into Obama koolaid, she can’t believe her lyin eyes? Carrying water for Obama will do nothing for your future, Carolyn. Think about the future of your children when the Truth comes out and the shame you will carry forever because you defended this licentious malevolent president!

    Getting things straight about Operation Fast & Furious

    Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) has penned a whitewash of Operation Fast and Furious in the New York Daily News that is yet another attempt to obfuscate and divert public attention away from a deadly Obama administration scandal, and fix blame on Republicans and the nation’s allegedly weak gun laws.

    As Fox News reported Monday, Attorney General Eric Holder, whose Justice Department has been stonewalling the parallel investigations by Senator Charles Grassley and Congressman Darrell Issa, has also done his share of buck passing lately, and hiding behind an Inspector General’s investigation of the scandal.

    “But this initiative, which was identical to one launched under the Bush administration, spiraled out of control, with ATF agents losing track of the guns as soon as they crossed the border.”

    Here’s what Maloney asserted:

    In Wide Receiver, Mexican authorities were alerted to gun trafficking suspects. A few hundred guns were involved. Nobody was killed. In Fast and Furious, Mexican authorities, and our own Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agents stationed in Mexico City were deliberately kept in the dark. A couple of thousand guns were involved. A Border Patrol agent and untold numbers of Mexican citizens are dead.

    The most “identical” thing about both cases is that they unfolded under the command of the same fellow, former ATF Phoenix Special Agent in Charge William Newell, as this column recalled. An extensive story in Business Week raises serious questions about Wide Receiver and the practice of gun walking.

    Newell’s name came up during the Fox News report, and it wasn’t good. He is alleged to have intentionally obstructed an investigation into the arson at the home of ATF agent Jay Dobyns while his family was inside. Dobyns was exonerated by that investigation.

    Maloney also states that when Holder testified in May before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform “on which I sit” (as if she were there), he made that now infamous claim that he had only heard about Fast and Furious a few weeks before. There’s a factual problem here. Holder didn’t testify before that committee. He testified before the House Judiciary Committee, and Maloney doesn’t sit on that one. This column was reminded about that by a sharp-eyed Congressional aide who is a regular reader.

    But Maloney is playing the “Blame Bush” game because Wide Receiver was an operation launched during his presidency. Federal prosecutors apparently didn’t want to touch some of the cases because the government would have had to tell the jury about “gun walking,” a strategy that worked so poorly under Wide Receiver that the ATF just had to do it all over again with Fast and Furious, but on a much larger scale with far worse consequences.

    Maloney also asserts:

    “But for Republican congressional leaders, one botched operation is not enough to serve their political goals. They need a scandal — and are desperate to create one.”

    Republicans didn’t “create” anything. Fast and Furious was literally dumped in their laps by National Gun Rights Examiner David Codrea and independent blogger Mike Vanderboegh at Sipsey Street Irregulars, two gents whose responsibility for breaking this story and bringing it to the attention of Congress is being deliberately overlooked by the mainstream press and even in the Wikipedia discussion. Codrea was named Journalist of the Year during the September Gun Rights Policy Conference in Chicago for his coverage of the scandal.

    The ATF created this scandal, and the Justice Department appears determined to cover it up.

    Finally, Maloney insists:

    “Holder explained that some of the weekly reports reviewed by his staff did occasionally mention Fast and Furious, though none of the documents (which he provided to the committee) gave any indication of controversial tactics — or that these had gone wrong. Multiple officials from Justice and ATF testified they didn’t know about illegal guns flowing to Mexico, either.”

    Documents, including e-mails between Justice Department officials and Newell and other ATF officials strongly suggest otherwise. No reading of the documents provided recently by Sen. Grassley here, here and here could lead to any other conclusion.

  14. Thanks, admin for the rundown of the latest R Debate- I didn’t read much discussion of Foreign Policy but enjoyed reading your play by play-

  15. admin, you are the best at reporting debates. WPIX New York City gave a brief rundown of that Republican event. In wrapping it up, Sukanya Krishnan, who was filling in for the regular female anchor, remarked about candidates’ opinons being all over the place; then she added: “And we’re stuck in the middle.”

    STUCK in the middle? Should a reporter be any place else? Freudian slip of sorts?
    Until FCC exclusivity privileges knock this station (WPIX) off my cable service, I do find it worth following. For example, there are several commentators who are on air regularly, and their opinions are not usually cookie cutter. Last night “Lionel” had this to say about the Super Committee failing: Lionel is glad that it failed; says it is unconstitutional and for that reason alone, should have failed. He acknowledges he’s the only one mentioning that. Larry Mendte gave an effective presentation of how many candidates the Repubs have gone through already. However, Larry missed the point of saying how convenient all these scandals were for Obama.

  16. Good article, fair and well thought out-

    “Support that at your own risk”

    November 22, 2011

    #Occupy,Occupy Protest

    A clear concise piece describing why you have to be ignorant or gullible to be supportive of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Or… complicit with their ideals:


    “OWS asserts that, currently, the power is in the hands of the wealthy but that it should be the hands of academics and other people smarter than you and, therefore, know better than you what’s best for you and everyone else. So their stated mission is replace the system with a new one that is leaderless. However, this is not an honest statement because it is incongruous with their perception of society. Social justice implies someone is being wronged (perhaps exploited or outright stolen from), and that there is a judicial punishment. Therefore, people that stratify society by classes of victims according to gender, race or even sexual orientation are doomed to seek supremacy, not just opportunity equality, for these victim classes. When you see someone demanding social justice, they are looking to shift the class for whom they see as the owner of social power; a shift that moves power from the so-called “haves” to the so-called “have-nots.” It sounds like a good idea, but it isn’t, and history proves it.”

    “Look at the legacy of Che Guevara, Hugo Chavez and Venezuela or Fidel Castro’s Cuba, the revolution that brought the Ayatollah to power in Iran or Kim Jong-Il and Mao’s famine-stained brand of Communism in North Korea and China. The reality is, the only place where Communism ever “works” is when it is brought about through intimidation, fear, actual torture and death. While propaganda from the American Left perpetuates conspiracy concepts around the so-called military-industrial complex accusing the CIA and the Pentagon of all sorts of “black helicopter” or “men-in-black” tactics to silence political dissidents, you have actual oppression throughout Islamic Arab countries, Socialist Central and South American banana republics, and communist regimes in parts of Africa and Asia. Actual kidnappings, rapes, murders of people and their families, including children for preserving power.”

    “In that world, there is no constitution that limits the government. There is no legislative representation. There is no due process. There is just the way of the state and what the intellectuals have decided for you, as an adult, what is best and right for you. “Socialism is the creed of shared misery. Communism is the philosophy of outcome equality through universal failure.” (good quote) And they sell it on the concept that if nobody is rich, then there can be no one in a class above you. But that is the biggest lie of all, because the advocates of that system want to be in the class above you that tells you what you can or cannot drive, eat or buy, or how much money you are allowed to earn. The road to hell was paved with good intentions and the message of the Occupy Wall Street movement is no exception.”

    For reading the entire article click here:

  17. Here’s an area which could use some of Obama’s infrastructure bux. Thing is, he wants new impressive stuff built. Certainly he would not give a rat’s butt about these six families:

    November 22, 2011
    After four months of no repairs, a collapsed road in Saylorsburg is forcing some residents to move. Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee caused Leisure Court to collapse. Now, a 30 foot drop sits at the opening of the road. Several months ago FEMA agreed to fund a temporary fix, with Monroe County signing on as the applicant. But that’s no longer the case. Residents already received a combined $28,000 through individual assistance from FEMA, taking the township and county out of the equation all together. Residents say the fix is estimated at $425,000 though, and they don’t have the extra cash in their bank accounts to pay the difference. With the heart of winter just ahead, residents feel forced to move. In fact, two of the six families living on Leisure Court already have. Since this is a private road and no one seems to know who actually owns it, officials say residents are stuck in a tough situation.

  18. Newt’s immigrant stand last night was not only a move to the middle, but also a test of whether the people in the party would support him.

    I have never liked that man, but that was a gutsey move. He sure looks and acts like more of a leader than the one we have in there. If the Reps replace O, they will need not only someone that stand up for something, but one that can get the support of both parties.

    Heaven forbid, can that possible be Newt, and can he be trusted.

    If it comes down to Newt and he is polling well, will HRC trust what will happen enough to just sit and watch. I don’t think this country can take 4 more years of crap.

  19. I read the Lame Cherry blog from time to time. I read the following today about the blogger’s beliefs on the European Union which was written in a way that made me laugh, so I am posting it here.

    “The old EU is tits up, and exclusively you heard it here first by God’s Grace while the always experts were playing with their Obama doll.”

  20. I just realized that I did not include the link to Sarah Palin’s op-ed. Here is her opinion piece in its entirety.

    Mark Twain famously wrote, “There is no distinctly native American criminal class except Congress.” Peter Schweizer’s new book, “Throw Them All Out,” reveals this permanent political class in all its arrogant glory. (Full disclosure: Mr. Schweizer is employed by my political action committee as a foreign-policy adviser.)

    Mr. Schweizer answers the questions so many of us have asked. I addressed this in a speech in Iowa last Labor Day weekend. How do politicians who arrive in Washington, D.C. as men and women of modest means leave as millionaires? How do they miraculously accumulate wealth at a rate faster than the rest of us? How do politicians’ stock portfolios outperform even the best hedge-fund managers’? I answered the question in that speech: Politicians derive power from the authority of their office and their access to our tax dollars, and they use that power to enrich and shield themselves.

    The money-making opportunities for politicians are myriad, and Mr. Schweizer details the most lucrative methods: accepting sweetheart gifts of IPO stock from companies seeking to influence legislation, practicing insider trading with nonpublic government information, earmarking projects that benefit personal real estate holdings, and even subtly extorting campaign donations through the threat of legislation unfavorable to an industry. The list goes on and on, and it’s sickening.

    Astonishingly, none of this is technically illegal, at least not for Congress. Members of Congress exempt themselves from the laws they apply to the rest of us. That includes laws that protect whistleblowers (nothing prevents members of Congress from retaliating against staffers who shine light on corruption) and Freedom of Information Act requests (it’s easier to get classified documents from the CIA than from a congressional office).

    The corruption isn’t confined to one political party or just a few bad apples. It’s an endemic problem encompassing leadership on both sides of the aisle. It’s an entire system of public servants feathering their own nests.

    None of this surprises me. I’ve been fighting this type of corruption and cronyism my entire political career. For years Alaskans suspected that our lawmakers and state administrators were in the pockets of the big oil companies to the detriment of ordinary Alaskans. We knew we were being taken for a ride, but it took FBI wiretaps to finally capture lawmakers in the act of selling their votes. In the wake of politicos being carted off to prison, my administration enacted reforms based on transparency and accountability to prevent this from happening again.

    We were successful because we had the righteous indignation of Alaskan citizens on our side. Our good ol’ boy political class in Juneau was definitely not with us. Business was good for them, so why would they want to end “business as usual”?

    The moment you threaten to strip politicians of their legal graft, they’ll moan that they can’t govern effectively without it. Perhaps they’ll gravitate toward reform, but often their idea of reform is to limit the right of “We the people” to exercise our freedom of speech in the political process.

    I’ve learned from local, state and national political experience that the only solution to entrenched corruption is sudden and relentless reform. Sudden because our permanent political class is adept at changing the subject to divert the public’s attention—and we can no longer afford to be indifferent to this system of graft when our country is going bankrupt. Reform must be relentless because fighting corruption is like a game of whack-a-mole. You knock it down in one area only to see it pop up in another.

    What are the solutions? We need reform that provides real transparency. Congress should be subject to the Freedom of Information Act like everyone else. We need more detailed financial disclosure reports, and members should submit reports much more often than once a year. All stock transactions above $5,000 should be disclosed within five days.

    We need equality under the law. From now on, laws that apply to the private sector must apply to Congress, including whistleblower, conflict-of-interest and insider-trading laws. Trading on nonpublic government information should be illegal both for those who pass on the information and those who trade on it. (This should close the loophole of the blind trusts that aren’t really blind because they’re managed by family members or friends.)

    No more sweetheart land deals with campaign contributors. No gifts of IPO shares. No trading of stocks related to committee assignments. No earmarks where the congressman receives a direct benefit. No accepting campaign contributions while Congress is in session. No lobbyists as family members, and no transitioning into a lobbying career after leaving office. No more revolving door, ever.

    This call for real reform must transcend political parties. The grass-roots movements of the right and the left should embrace this. The tea party’s mission has always been opposition to waste and crony capitalism, and the Occupy protesters must realize that Washington politicians have been “Occupying Wall Street” long before anyone pitched a tent in Zuccotti Park.

  21. “OWS asserts that, currently, the power is in the hands of the wealthy


    but that it should be the hands of academics and other people smarter than you


  22. Funny, recently I’ve heard that “The NYC Police did the OWS protesters a big favor…”, implying that it will elevate their leverage, message, etc.

    But I think the “favor” the cops did them was to send them back home to their families, so they won’t freeze to death in the cold months.

    “Hey, let’s go occupy Miami Beach!!”


    We need a picture of you so it can be affixed in the urban dictionary next to the word..Asshat..

  24. Bwa-ha-ha-ha. I think you are being far too kind. There are many other phrases which would be more descriptive and accurate.


    It never ceases to amaze me that posters in disagreement with admin’s well thought out and brilliantly expressed positions on various topics continues to post merrily away as though anyone on this blog would ever agree with them over this site’s author.

    What a waste of space and time.

    admin’s patience knows no bounds.

  25. This is what will kill Obama…..Hillary’s voters are fleeing.

    CNN Poll: Blue collar Democrats’ support for Obama drops

    But the poll indicates that there has been some change when Democrats are asked whether they want to see their party renominate Obama, with 26% of Democrats saying that they would prefer the party to nominate another Democrat for president next year, up from 18% in October.

    Nonetheless, a robust 72% of Democrats are still in the president’s corner – and in any case, the changes are strictly hypothetical, since there is no indication that Obama will face a serious challenger in any primary next year.

    “The biggest change comes among white Democrats with no college education, a group typically considered the core of the party’s blue-collar constituency,” says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. “Half of all white Democrats with no college education say they don’t want President Obama heading their party’s ticket next year.”

    Then-Sen. Obama’s appeal to blue collar whites was limited in the 2008 cycle. In the Democratic primaries they tended to back his main rival, then-Sen. Hillary Clinton. And in the general election they went for the Sen. John McCain, the GOP presidential nominee, by 18 points, according to CNN exit polls.


    They still want Hillary.

  26. love it.

    ‘Company Policy: We are not hiring until Obama is gone’

    WACO, Ga. — A west Georgia business owner is stirring up controversy with signs he posted on his company’s trucks, for all to see as the trucks roll up and down roads, highways and interstates:

    “New Company Policy: We are not hiring until Obama is gone.”

    “Can’t afford it,” explained the employer, Bill Looman, Tuesday evening. “I’ve got people that I want to hire now, but I just can’t afford it. And I don’t foresee that I’ll be able to afford it unless some things change in D.C.”

    Looman’s company is U.S. Cranes, LLC. He said he put up the signs, and first posted pictures of the signs on his personal Facebook page, six months ago, and he said he received mostly positive reaction from people, “about 20-to-one positive.”

    But for some reason, one of the photos went viral on the Internet on Monday.

    And the reaction has been so intense, pro and con, he’s had to have his phones disconnected because of the non-stop calls, and he’s had to temporarily shut down his company’s website because of all the traffic crashing the system.

    Looman made it clear, talking with 11Alive’s Jon Shirek, that he is not refusing to hire to make some political point; it’s that he doesn’t believe he can hire anyone, because of the economy. And he blames the Obama administration.

    “The way the economy’s running, and the way my business has been hampered by the economy, and the policies of the people in power, I felt that it was necessary to voice my opinion, and predict that I wouldn’t be able to do any hiring,” he said.

    Looman did receive some unexpected attention not long after he put up his signs and Facebook photos. He said someone, and he thinks he knows who it was, reported him to the FBI as a threat to national security. He said the accusation filtered its way through the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security and finally the Secret Service. Agents interviewed him.

    “The Secret Service left here, they were in a good mood and laughing,” Looman said. “I got the feeling they thought it was kind of ridiculous, and a waste of their time.”

    So Bill Looman is keeping the signs up, and the photos up — stirring up a lot of debate.

    “I just spent 10 years in the Marine Corps protecting the rights of people… the First Amendment, and the Second Amendment and the [rest of the] Bill of Rights,” he said. “Lord knows they’re calling me at 2 in the morning, all night long, and voicing their opinion. And I respect their right to do that. I’m getting a reaction, a lot of it’s negative, now. But a lot of people are waking up.”

  27. Navy to lay off 3,000 mid-career sailors

    SAN DIEGO — Imagine joining the Navy ten years ago with a career in mind. Now, sailors with that career plan are getting pink slips as the military looks for places to save money.

    Since June, 16,000 mid-career sailors have been waiting to find out if they will be forced out early.

    Last week, the Navy began its layoffs when the first of two rounds of personnel cuts were announced.

    Read the original story at

    “Nobody ever wants to pass this sort of bad news to somebody,” said Captain Winton Smith, Naval Station San Diego’s commanding officer. “It’s a very difficult thing for any commanding officer to sit down with a hard charger and to tell them to prepare for the next chapter of their life.”


    See you when the postprandial somnolence wears off.. 🙂 Have a Great Day!

  29. moononpluto
    November 23rd, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    This is what will kill Obama…..Hillary’s voters are fleeing.

    CNN Poll: Blue collar Democrats’ support for Obama drops

    So the ones without college education are smart enough to smell a charlatan, while going to college appears to dull ones’ senses???

    (Admission: I went to college. I smoked some pot. Yet I retained my senses. Must be a blue collar streak in me…)

  30. That’s 8% difference in one month! Any idea why at this time?

    Might be seeing the OWS saying that Obama has no clothes. But blue collar voters wouldn’t be the biggest canaries there. What were the changes in previous months?

    CNN Poll: Blue collar Democrats’ support for Obama drops
    But the poll indicates that there has been some change when Democrats are asked whether they want to see their party renominate Obama, with 26% of Democrats saying that they would prefer the party to nominate another Democrat for president next year, up from 18% in October.

  31. Funny, recently I’ve heard that “The NYC Police did the OWS protesters a big favor…”, implying that it will elevate their leverage, message, etc.

    But I think the “favor” the cops did them was to send them back home to their families, so they won’t freeze to death in the cold months.


    Certainly the latter, and perhaps both.

  32. Some article quoted from elsewhere said:
    but that [power] should be the hands of academics and other people smarter than you

    tdo said:


    Sorry for the CAPS, I was in a big hurry. If anyone thinks that statement about academics is part of the OWS message, pls supply evidence. If anything, the more common OWS message would be about taking money/power from the elite/academics and distributing it among the 99%.

  33. I thought OWS was having a site in DC already. Anyway, this group is focusing on Congress’ decision whether to extend the Bush tax cuts.
    Occupy Wall Street protesters completed their 231-mile journey from New York to the District on Tuesday, arriving in muddy McPherson Square
    After spending the night in College Park, about 100 people — including a dozen of the original 21 who set out from Lower Manhattan nearly two weeks ago — marched through Northeast Washington before arriving on K Street NW about 3 p.m.

  34. Mrs. Smith said:
    Occupy protester hands President Obama a note ( staged- everything about Obama is staged ) [….]
    Another staged incident!
    See link for note:


    Here is the text of the note, photo at the Yahoo link:

    Mr. President: Over 4000 peaceful protesters have been arrested. While bankers continue to destroy the American economy. You must stop the assault on our 1st amendment rights. Your silence sends a message that police brutality is acceptable. Banks got bailed out. We got sold out.

    “Staged incident?” Didn’t you read the note? It’s criticizing Obama! These are the same OWS protestors who tried to shout Obama down (‘mic check’).

  35. Although there is much to complain about these days, surely there is also much to be thankful for.

    Happy Thanksgiving Everybody!

  36. echo “jbstonesfan November 23rd, 2011 at 3:42 pm Thank you administrator for another great year and happy Thanksgiving to all.”

  37. AARP, disguised in this report as American Association of Retired Persons, is backtracking a year and how many trillions of dollars too late?
    End To Medicare ‘As We Know It’ Already In The Works | Fox News
    snip But as it turns out, Obama himself sharply limits Medicare spending and Democrats actually voted for it in the new health care law, fundamentally altering the program “as we know it,” say analysts. “President Obama ended it as we know it,” said James Capretta of the Ethics and Public Policy Center. “The one thing I don’t think the public really understands is that the health care law has already capped Medicare spending and President Obama was the proponent of that cap.” In the new health care law, Medicare is slashed by $500 billion and growth in Medicare spending is capped to just 1 percent over growth in the overall economy.
    In an 80-page message addressed to the Super Committee, Obama proposed another $250 billion in Medicare cuts along with lowering the limit on Medicare spending to gross domestic product plus 0.5 percent. He would cap spending at the lower number by reducing reimbursements. Since Medicare typically grows 2 or 3 points more than GDP plus inflation, or at around 7-9 percent annually, seniors lose ground every year. “Any time we have an arbitrary cap that’s not reachable, where benefits could be harmed, we would be opposed,” said David Certner, policy director for American Association of Retired Persons. Some critics are concerned about how the president will enforce limits. He’d use the Independent Payments Advisory Board, or IPAB, created by the health care law. But it only has one power to hold down spending — impose price controls on providers. “If there’s a cost that go above the cap, we’re going to be stopping care for that year and in essence lead to rationing of care,” Certner said. “So we can’t have arbitrary caps in the Medicare program.” When doctors, surgeons or those who make knee or hip replacements are simply told they’ll be paid significantly less, what will they do? Capretta said he fears the worst. “Eventually some of the providers of those services will drop out of the market and there will be issues in terms of accessing care,” he said. “That’s what the Medicare actuary has already predicted will occur under the health care law.”

  38. A Happy Thanksgiving to all and a special one for our Hillary “The First Lady Of The World” and her most Patriotic family.

    As a side note I hope that little ten yr old girls bookbag survived the dive and ends up at the The


  39. Happy Thanksgiving, ABM90- ah- you liked that joke.. good on ya!.. You’ll like this article too from a former Marine-

    ‘Company Policy: We are not hiring until Obama is gone’

    WACO, Ga. — A west Georgia business owner is stirring up controversy with signs he posted on his company’s trucks, for all to see as the trucks roll up and down roads, highways and interstates:

    “New Company Policy: We are not hiring until Obama is gone.”

    “Can’t afford it,” explained the employer, Bill Looman, Tuesday evening. “I’ve got people that I want to hire now, but I just can’t afford it. And I don’t foresee that I’ll be able to afford it unless some things change in D.C.”

    Looman’s company is U.S. Cranes, LLC. He said he put up the signs, and first posted pictures of the signs on his personal Facebook page, six months ago, and he said he received mostly positive reaction from people, “about 20-to-one positive.”

    But for some reason, one of the photos went viral on the Internet on Monday.

    And the reaction has been so intense, pro and con, he’s had to have his phones disconnected because of the non-stop calls, and he’s had to temporarily shut down his company’s website because of all the traffic crashing the system.

    Looman made it clear, talking with 11Alive’s Jon Shirek, that he is not refusing to hire to make some political point; it’s that he doesn’t believe he can hire anyone, because of the economy. And he blames the Obama administration.

    “The way the economy’s running, and the way my business has been hampered by the economy, and the policies of the people in power, I felt that it was necessary to voice my opinion, and predict that I wouldn’t be able to do any hiring,” he said.

    Looman did receive some unexpected attention not long after he put up his signs and Facebook photos. He said someone, and he thinks he knows who it was, reported him to the FBI as a threat to national security. He said the accusation filtered its way through the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security and finally the Secret Service. Agents interviewed him.

    “The Secret Service left here, they were in a good mood and laughing,” Looman said. “I got the feeling they thought it was kind of ridiculous, and a waste of their time.”

    So Bill Looman is keeping the signs up, and the photos up — stirring up a lot of debate.

    “I just spent 10 years in the Marine Corps protecting the rights of people… the First Amendment, and the Second Amendment and the [rest of the] Bill of Rights,” he said. “Lord knows they’re calling me at 2 in the morning, all night long, and voicing their opinion. And I respect their right to do that. I’m getting a reaction, a lot of it’s negative, now. But a lot of people are waking up.”

    Happy TG Basil and moon- wink-wink!

  40. Looking good! Obama’s numbers are well past the 50% mark for disapproval…

    CNN Poll: Blue collar Democrats’ support for Obama drops

    Washington (CNN) – Although President Barack Obama’s overall approval rating remains steady, his standing among Democrats, and in particular among blue-collar Democrats, appears to have dropped, according to a new national survey.

    According to a CNN/ORC International Poll released Wednesday, 44% of Americans say they approve of the job the president’s doing in the White House, with 54% saying they disapprove of how Obama is handling his duties. The president’s approval rating has hovered in the same mid-40’s range since June in CNN surveys.

    Full results (pdf)

    But the poll indicates that there has been some change when Democrats are asked whether they want to see their party renominate Obama, with 26% of Democrats saying that they would prefer the party to nominate another Democrat for president next year, up from 18% in October.

    Nonetheless, a robust 72% of Democrats are still in the president’s corner – and in any case, the changes are strictly hypothetical, since there is no indication that Obama will face a serious challenger in any primary next year.

    “The biggest change comes among white Democrats with no college education, a group typically considered the core of the party’s blue-collar constituency,” says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. “Half of all white Democrats with no college education say they don’t want President Obama heading their party’s ticket next year.”

    Then-Sen. Obama’s appeal to blue collar whites was limited in the 2008 cycle. In the Democratic primaries they tended to back his main rival, then-Sen. Hillary Clinton. And in the general election they went for the Sen. John McCain, the GOP presidential nominee, by 18 points, according to CNN exit polls.

    The CNN survey indicates that the president’s signature piece of domestic legislation – last year’s health care reform bill – remains unpopular, although some of the opposition comes from people who think the bill should have gone farther. Thirty-eight percent favor the new health care law; 37% oppose it because they think it is too liberal and another 14% oppose it because they believe it is not liberal enough.

    The CNN poll was conducted by ORC International from November 18-20, with 1,019 adult Americans, including 504 Democrats and independents who lean Democratic questioned by telephone. The survey’s overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

    – CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

  41. Happy thanksgiving everyone. Le’s keep up the good fight to get rid of BO, OWS, Holder, Jarrett, MO and all the other redistributionist jerkoffs who want to take from everyone else so they have all the power.

    No way jose.

  42. I am thankful for admin’s wonderful blog and all the great people who comment here.

    Happy Thanksgiving to everyone and remember to eat an extra bite of pie for me!

  43. Happy Thanksgiving to all of my American friends here!

    Hillary Clinton to address internet freedom conference

    Thursday 24 November 2011

    US secretary of state Hillary Clinton will address an international conference on internet freedom in The Hague on December 9, the foreign affairs ministry said on Thursday.

    The aim of the conference, which is being organised by the ministry, is to create an international coalition to strengthen and protect freedom on the internet.

    Ministers from Sweden, Canada, Estonia, Kenya and Tunisia have already signed up, as have human rights organisations and internet companies such as Google, Facebook and Twitter, according to a ministry statement.

  44. Arizona Lawmakers Say They Will Build Border Fence | Fox News
    PHOENIX – The U.S. state of Arizona is taking on immigration once again, with lawmakers collecting donations from the public to put a fence along every inch of the state’s border with Mexico. It is an unprecedented effort by a state that is the busiest U.S. gateway for both illegal immigrants and marijuana. The idea came from state Senator Steve Smith, a Republican who says people from across the nation have donated about $255,000 to the project since the state in July launched a website that urges visitors to “show the world the resolve and the can-do spirit of the American people.”
    You know Obama’s DOJ will sue over this too.

  45. Iran official confirms 12 CIA agents arrested

    Influential Iran parliamentarian says his country arrested 12 CIA agents who allegedly operated in coordination with Israel’s Mossad targeting Iranian military, nuclear program

    Associated Press Published: 11.24.11

    An influential Iran parliamentarian has said that the country has arrested 12 agents of the American Central Intelligence Agency, the country’s official IRNA news agency reported Thursday.

    Parviz Sorouri, who sits on the powerful committee of foreign policy and national security, that the alleged agents had been operating in coordination with Israel’s Mossad and other regional agencies, and targeted the country’s military and its nuclear program.

    “The US and Zionist regime’s espionage apparatuses were trying to damage Iran both from inside and outside with a heavy blow, using regional intelligence services,” Sorouri was quoted as having said on Wednesday.

    “Fortunately, with swift reaction by the Iranian intelligence department, the actions failed to bear fruit,” Sorouri said.

    The lawmaker did not specify the nationality of the alleged agents, nor when or where they had been arrested.

    Iran periodically announces the capture or execution of alleged US or Israeli spies, and often no further information is released.

    This current announcement follows the unraveling by Lebanon’s Hezbollah of a CIA spy ring in that country. Hezbollah reportedly works closely with Iran.

    Hezbollah’s longtime leader, Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, boasted in June on television he had unmasked at least two CIA spies who had infiltrated the ranks of the organization. Though the US Embassy in Lebanon officially denied the accusation, American officials conceded that Nasrallah wasn’t lying and that Hezbollah had subsequently methodically picked off CIA informants.

    The United States and its allies suspect Iran is pursuing a nuclear weapon program, a charge Iran denies.,7340,L-4152660,00.html

  46. At my age and political hacks stripping our countriys riches dignaty and honor in the world I feel insecure and grieve for my great country.this day of Thanksgiving without my dear wife and life companion the following thoughts are comforting.

    —————————————————-I know my children someday will gather without me. Perhaps they will remember these words. Perhaps, somewhere, they will find them. The people we love are always there in our hearts. Thanksgiving can be, if we choose, a day to remember the love they showed us and the gifts they gave us, the fullness of life and not of loss, the blessings of life and not the long shadow of death. It can be a day to remember that, for all our nation’s problems, we are the luckiest people on the face of the globe to live in the home of the free and the brave.

    Happy Thanksgiving. May God bless us all.

  47. US secretary of state Hillary Clinton will address an international conference on internet freedom in The Hague on December 9, the foreign affairs ministry said on Thursday.

    The aim of the conference, which is being organised by the ministry, is to create an international coalition to strengthen and protect freedom on the internet.


    Oh, good for Hillary as usual! Don’t waste time with US laws, fix the problem globally!

  48. Real in your face.
    So many things wrong with this. Saw it on WPIX last night but found no WPIX documentation to bring here. However the following piece is perfectly adequate.
    He and the biebe together. I did not know but just found out that he and Bieber have some kind of a prior association. November 30th is the night of the tree-lighting at Rockefeller Center & Obama is insisting on his entourage going through midtown. Although it has not been mentioned, I’ll be surprised if Occupy is not there. [They were back in ZooCootie Park yesterday and supped on turkey dinners, many provided by Whole Foods; individuals and groups provided the rest.] Finally, the WPIX piece emphasized O was there for fundraisers. Yes, that’s plural.
    IN YOUR FACE confidence, arrogance, audacity. The Hopium crowd will call it cool.

    Worst Gridlock Ever? Obama, Bieber Visit NYC Next Wednesday: Gothamist
    President Obama’s NYC visits mean traffic hell, as do Justin Bieber’s. But what happens when the Commander in Chief and the super popular teen singer come to the Big Apple on the same day during the holiday season? It is making drivers freak out. On November 30, Obama will be in town to raise some money while Bieber will be at the Rockefeller Christmas Tree lighting. DNAinfo reports that Gridlock Sam Schwartz has “issue[d] what he’s billed as the ‘Biggest Gridlock Alert Day of Decade,’ warning residents to brace for the post-Thanksgiving twin-punches of the superstar visits. ‘With masses of people in Midtown for the tree lighting and to see Justin Bieber, the President could’ve picked a better day to visit.'” Yeah, can’t the White House and Scooter Braun get their acts together and coordinate stuff? Closures will include “Fifth and Sixth Avenues from West 48th to West 51st streets, the FDR Drive below 63rd Street. Other avenues east of Seventh will also be affected.” Obama and Bieber were in NYC on the same day in June, but that’s not the same at Christmas tree lighting night/ holiday season. It’s unclear if Obama and Bieber plan on meeting up to discuss making another fan’s day.

  49. An interesting post at DAILY PUMA

    Republican Nomination Syndrome about to hit again?
    First it was John McCain and his 1% approval rating back in October of 2007, McCain then went on win the 2008 republican nomination.

    Could Newt Gingrich be next? Newt was assailed by the media, had something like one or two dozen of his “top advisors” quit on him during the summer because he was not preparing himself for the first republican debate, (lol, like it really mattered, there have been around a dozen with more to come), and Newt too was well under 5% in popularity at some point during the summer.

    But Newt didn’t quit and is now considered one of the top three republican candidates.

    The republican party is rife with contradictions at this point. The 44% republican evangelical base condemned Mit Romney for being a mormon, yet according to David Letterman, Romney was the only male republican candidate who has only been married one time, and to one woman.

    In my opinion the Republicans should beg Hillary Clinton to run as a Republican, her moderate, well thought out, inclusive style of politics is exactly what this country needs right now.

    POSTED BY ALESSANDRO MACHI AT 12:31 PM on November 14 2011

    at Daily Puma

  50. democrat1:
    Just an FYI:

    Friday, November 25, 2011

    Rasmussen Reports will be releasing fresh information each and every day over the holiday weekend. However, we will not be updating the presidential tracking poll until Monday morning at 9:30 a.m. Eastern.
    The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Wednesday shows that 22% of the nation’s voters Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as president. Forty percent (40%) Strongly Disapprove, giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -18

  51. The idiot woman with the pepper spray ought to get a taste of her own medicine after spraying a crowd of shoppers @ Best Buy because she needed space!

    #OWS: Adbusters = Grinch. (more you should know about if you are still on the Occupy Kool-Aid)

    #OccupyBlackFriday becomes #OCCUPYXMAS. Kicks off with ‘Buy Nothing Day’, November 25/26. Calls for flashmobs and mall sit-ins

    November 24, 2011 at 7:23 AM EST

    By Brenda J. Elliott

    If you thought the Occupy Wall Street nutcases would be satisfied with a successful Occupy Black Friday by flashmobbing the malls and WalMart parking lots, you’d be wrong.

    While the majority of Americans are preparing to celebrate Thanksgiving with friends and family in sharing thanks, turkey, cranberries, and pumpkin pie, the anti-corporatist George Soros-funded Tides Foundation-funded Adbusters Media Foundation has annexed #OccupyBlackFriday to its annual Buy Nothing Day campaign. Using the Twitter hashtag, #OCCUPYXMAS, they have collectively declared war on Christmas retailers and shoppers.

    Adbusters’ campaign Buy Nothing Day is a “24-Hour Moratorium on Consumer Spending.” The Day is actually two days, as it is November 25, Black Friday in North America, and November 26 internationally.

    Buy Nothing Day — “celebrated every November by environmentalists, social activists and concerned citizens in over 65 countries around the world” — is in its 20th year.

    In the past, Buy Nothing Day has been covered by such “media giants as CNN, USA Today, MSNBC, Wired, the BBC, The Age and the CBC.”

    Designed to coincide with Black Friday, Adbusters recently co-opted #OccupyBlackFriday, indicating this move is more about pushing the Adbusters agenda (and its disappearing role in the #OccupyWallStreet movement it instigated), than promoting the #OWS “cause”.

    On its website, Adbusters addresses its faux grassroots media creation:

    You’ve been sleeping on the streets for two months pleading peacefully for a new spirit in economics. And just as your camps are raided, your eyes pepper sprayed and your head’s knocked in, another group of people are preparing to camp-out. Only these people aren’t here to support occupy Wall Street, they’re here to secure their spot in line for a Black Friday bargain at Super Target and Macy’s.

    Occupy gave the world a new way of thinking about the fat cats and financial pirates on Wall Street. Now lets give them a new way of thinking about the holidays, about our own consumption habits. Lets’ use the coming 20th annual Buy Nothing Day to launch an all-out offensive to unseat the corporate kings on the holiday throne.

    This year’s Black Friday will be the first campaign of the holiday season where we set the tone for a new type of holiday culminating with #OCCUPYXMAS. As the global protests of the 99% against corporate greed and casino capitalism continues, lets take the opportunity to hit the empire where it really hurts…the wallet.

    On Nov 25/26th we escape the mayhem and unease of the biggest shopping day in North America and put the breaks on rabid consumerism for 24 hours. Flash mobs, consumer fasts, mall sit-ins, community events, credit card-ups, whirly-marts and jams, jams, jams! We don’t camp on the sidewalk for a reduced price tag on a flat screen TV or psycho-killer video game. Instead, we occupy the very paradigm that is fueling our eco, social and political decline.

    Historically, Buy Nothing Day has been about fasting from hyper consumerism – a break from the cash register and reflecting on how dependent we really are on conspicuous consumption. On this 20th anniversary of Buy Nothing Day, we take it to the next level, marrying it with the message of #occupy…


    Shenanigans begin November 25!

    Repeat: “Shenanigans begin November 25! [with] Flash mobs, consumer fasts, mall sit-ins, community events, credit card-ups, whirly-marts and jams, jams, jams!

    The Toronto Sun explains some of these proposed tactics:

    [The] “shenanigans,” include:

    — a Santa sit-in, whereby protesters sit outside a store and encourage people to cut up their credit cards;

    — a Jesus walk, where people put on a mask in the Holy Son’s likeness and walk through malls, to create an eerie sentiment;

    — a “whirly mart,” in which would-be shoppers fill their carts with products but abandon them at the cash register.

    The “jams, jams, jams!” refers to another Adbusters’ tactic. In April 2007, Adbusters jammed CNN:

    The idea is simple: take your TV, your DVD player, your video iPod, your XBOX 360, your laptop, your PSP, and say goodbye to them all for seven days. Simple, but not at all easy. Like millions of others before you, you’ll be shocked at just how difficult — yet also how life-changing — a week spent unplugged can really be.

    As for the Adbusters-created #OCCUPYXMAS hashtag:

    Adbusters created an #OCCUPYXMAS hashtag to mark the movement for those to follow and share online. As of Wednesday afternoon, more than 1,600 people had tweeted the page and some 20,000 had liked it on Facebook.

    How convenient, is it not, that Adbusters has provided such a handy tool for the rest of us to use to track their and their followers activities?

  52. President Obama Needs Clinton To Keep Blue States Blue

    By: Noah Rothman
    November 25, 2011

    Some political observers and commentators are openly saying what was once only whispered and easily dismissed. The possibility, if not likelihood, that President Obama will replace Vice President Joe Biden​ at the top of the ticket with someone much more popular and likely to add rather than subtract from a presidential ticket weighed down by unpopular legislation and a term marked by a consistently bad economy. Could Vice President Hillary Clinton be far off?d

    Vice President Hilary Clinton. You’ve heard the rumors before, and they remain rumors, but they are starting to take on a different tone. Once whispered among political junkies as one would discuss who should start this week in a fantasy football league – purely speculative and engaged in mostly for entertainment.

    Today, however, the tone has changed. Democrats now talk of the outcome of replacing Biden on the ticket in 2012 as though it’s a proscribed therapy that they must undergo. Republicans, when they talk about it, often qualify the possibility as remote if only to reassure themselves that this doomsday event is still unlikely. Putting Clinton on the ticket carries as many risks as rewards for Obama and the Democratic Party, but as the work of cobbling out a path to 270 electoral votes next year is undertaken it seems ever more likely that Hillary must be the next V.P.

    President Obama won a number of states in 2008 that had not voted for a Democratic President in a generation. In 2008, Obama won traditional swing states like Ohio and Florida, but also won states like Indiana and Virginia that had not voted for a Democratic president since 1964. The early exuberance after President Obama’s election led some to speculate that a generation of Democratic governance was ahead. That enthusiasm soon gave way to cautious optimism that the “expanded map” of 2008 was likely to hold in 2012. Today, all those predictions have been exposed for the folly that they were at the time. Not only will the “expanded map” contract significantly in 2008 but the battle has expanded out from traditional swing states to Democratic Strongholds like Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania.

    Alec MacGillis outlines the president’s troubles in the Keystone State perfectly in a recent piece for The New Republic. The president lost white, working class voters in Pennsylvania by 15 points in 2008 – a year with all the fundamentals running in his favor. The causes for this are manifold, according to MacGillis, owing primarily to the long and damaging primary battle that was fought here between Obama and Clinton in 2008.

    Vice President Biden​ was chose to join Obama on the ticket for a number of reasons, but primarily for his ability to lend gravitas to a ticket bereft of experience in weighty matters like foreign affairs. Biden would also help reassure Rust Belt Democrats about Obama’s presidency and their fears that his urban and progressive background would not impede him from representing their fears and concerns while in the Oval Office.

    But legislative overreach in 2009-2010 by Democrats in D.C. resulted in the Republican’s best performance in the industrial Midwest since 1938. The polls have not improved in this region for Obama and, despite a ballot initiative victory for Democrats in 2011, the outlook for the president in this region remains poor. Obama cannot win the presidency without Pennsylvania or Michigan. Full stop.

    On Friday, Pete du Pont writes in the editorial page about the myriad qualifications and benefits that Hilary brings to the top of the ticket – electorally it is a no brainer. For the Obama administration, it is a double edged sword; win the presidency and secure a legacy but abandon all the hard fought victories over the Clinton machine in 2008. Indeed, reanimate the necrotic corpse of the Clinton’s Washington establishment.

    The lame duck Obama presidency would be dominated by the story of Hillary’s ascendency to the presidency. There would not be enough media oxygen for both personalities in D.C. That is a hard pill to swallow but, given the likelihood that Republicans will retake control of the Senate and retain control of the House after 2012, putting Hillary on the ticket may be the only thing standing between Obama and the complete Republican dominance of Washington in 2013.

  53. Voters Should Toss Both GOP and Obama

    By RAY HANANIA• Fri, Nov 25, 2011

    No one among the Republican presidential contenders has risen above the chaos they have caused through their extremist voices.

    And while that may sound good for President Barack Obama’s chances for re-election, it’s not good news for American voters.

    The country is in the toilet. The people have been living off of wages that have barely inched up over the past decade, while costs continue to skyrocket. The no-ending and pointless war in Iraq continues to exhaust our resources not to mention the 5,000 Americans who have died there.

    And like Iraq, Afghanistan is a disaster and not even close to being a democracy — a woman and her daughter were murdered in front of the police and military headquarters recently in Afghanistan by the Taliban.

    Apparently, killing Osama bin Laden hasn’t changed anything one bit, except maybe satiate America’s insatiable appetite for revenge.

    Americans are struggling and all the rah-rah patriotism isn’t putting food on our table or making us safe in a world that continues to oppose our foreign policies.

    We need real leadership, not self-serving Republican demagogues nor a president who can’t seem to find his spine to do what needs to be done. Obama is a failure as a president, and he’s the best out there so far.

    That’s not good enough. We need someone who can lead this country out of the maelstrom we helped create with reckless foreign wars and wasting money to bailout the big bankers and investment firms helping them avoid collapse at the taxpayer’s expense. Those bankers continue to give themselves hundreds of millions in bonuses to celebrate their taxpayer funded orgies.

    Americans continue to scrape the bottom of the barrel, begging for jobs, and many turning to crime just to feed their families. The news media, which once championed the “little guy,” is now the protector of the powerful corporations that have gobbled them up.

    Members of Congress — Democrats and Republicans — are using their insider knowledge to buy up large orders of company stocks to gain instant profits in the millions.

    Who is that leader? I don’t know. But a good person to start with is Hillary Clinton, now Obama’s Secretary of State.

    I liked Bill Clinton. He was a great president. He brought prosperity to the American people, a prosperity, a great economy and a budget surplus that his less than smart successor, George W. Bush, squandered to achieve the revenge sought by his managers, Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld.

    Clinton was no one’s patsy. He had some personal flaws — but who doesn’t? Newt Gingrich, who cheated on his own wife even during the time that he was leading the charge against Clinton during the former president’s affair with Monica Lewinski?

    We’re in trouble folks. And right now pride in politics should not trump addressing our needs. Our health system is a mess, not just because of Obama’s inability to push anything through but because of the obstructionism of the Republicans.

    Voters need to open their eyes and put their interests first and find a new leader to rally around to save this country. Save us economically. Save us politically. And save us morally.

    (Ray Hanania hosts Radio Chicagoland every Sunday morning on WSBC 1240 AM from 8 until 11 am.)

  54. My goodness there are a few of these types of articles out there today…

    NOVEMBER 25, 2011.

    Bye Bye Biden?

    Why Obama may be eyeing Mrs. Clinton for the 2012 ticket

    The coming political year, with presidential, House and Senate elections, will be one of the most interesting (and important) ones we have seen in a long while. The main challenge President Obama faces is persuading voters to re-elect him in spite of the disastrous results of his economic policies.

    The declining economy has hit people on both ends of the economic spectrum, with the number of taxpayers with more than $1 million of income declining from from 400,000 back in 2007 to just 235,000 in 2009, and the number of people 16 older who have been unemployed over a year going from an average of 1.3 million in the last three recessions to 4.3 million in 2010. The Obama economy is the worst America has seen in four decades, with payroll employment today 5% lower than it was 41 months ago. Over the past three years, federal spending as a percentage of gross domestic product has been higher than at any time since World War II, adding $4 trillion to our national debt.

    So what to do if running for re-election in these terrible times? Many people have asked if I think President Obama will be re-elected. No, as long as the Republicans pick a viable candidate, he stands likely to be defeated. But it seems possible that the Democrat Party will pre-emptively decide that the time has come for some fresh thinking about its ticket.

    Democratic pollsters Patrick Caddell and Douglas Schoen have urged the president to forgo re-election for the good of his party and the nation. But those don’t seem like factors that would necessarily influence this president. Instead we might see him decide to switch to a vice presidential candidate who will be stronger, better, and change the thinking of a majority of the Democrats–namely, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

    Last December a USA Today/Gallup poll found Mrs. Clinton to be the most admired woman in politics. A poll in March found that 66% viewed Mrs. Clinton favorably and just 31% unfavorably. Mr. Obama’s numbers, which have since declined, were 54% and 43%; Vice President Joe Biden’s, 46% to 41%. An October Time poll of last October pitted Mrs. Clinton against Republican candidates. She led Mitt Romney by 17%, Rick Perry by 26% and Herman Cain by 22%. Mr. Obama’s leads in the same poll were 3%, 12% and 12%, respectively.

    Paul Starr, co-editor of The American Prospect, a liberal-left magazine, has observed that 45 percent of the people who disapprove of Mr. Obama’s performance view Mrs. Clinton favorably. It is fair to say that Mrs. Clinton’s addition to the ticket would be a substantial gain for President Obama that he badly needs next November, since she is, as Mr. Starr notes, a member of the part of his administration that has the highest approval rating, and more important she has not at all been a part of the disastrous economic policies that have caused the Obama drop in popularity. Even better for Election Day, she would gain support among older white voters, who did not support Mr. Obama very much in 2008. Mr. Starr also cites a Suffolk University Florida poll that shows that Mrs. Clinton on the Obama ticket would win Florida for the two of them, even if Sen. Marco Rubio is the Republican’s vice presidential candidate.

    One more advantage: With Mrs. Clinton comes her husband, who would very much want to get his wife elected, and also might be interested in a position in the Obama-Clinton administration.

    Add in that the Washington Democrats already see a political disaster coming: the Senate as well as the House is likely to have a Republican majority. Only two Republican Senate incumbents are vulnerable: the appointed Dean Heller in Nevada and elected Scott Brown of Massachusetts. By contrast, of the 23 Democrat-held seats up for re-election, political forecaster Larry Sabato sees six as safe for the Democrats, and two as likely GOP pickups. That will mean that Republicans need only to win one to four of the remaining 15 to take control of the Senate along with its House majority.

    So will President Obama make the vice presidential switch? While it is not unprecedented, it is certainly unusual, and it would likely be seen in some quarters as a desperate act of a weakened president. But politicians in general, and this president especially, show a willingness to do such things if absolutely necessary to save an election. If it is just plain essential to Obama’s winning re-election next November, it will soon come to pass.

  55. We are tired of OWS but the ties that bind are pervasive and far reaching to the ME.. playing into Obama’s War of attrition on the Middle Class..

    Occupy CAIR?: You won’t believe Islamic group’s ties to anti-Wall Street movement

    November 24, 2011

    News you won’t read elsewhere not even on Drudge:

  56. The weakness on the Democratic ticket is not Biden. We have a useless worthless president taking up space wreaking havoc with the American way of life.. on purpose. If we wanted a Socialist system of government, we all could have picked up and move to Russia..

    We are here- Obama is the odd man out that needs to go-

    Good article, Jan-

    November 25th, 2011 at 12:07 pm

    Voters Should Toss Both GOP and Obama

  57. Republican “extremists”? When compared to Obama, they are extreme in the right direction, and something that I can live with and more importantly, vote for in the next election. It is the Demoncratic party that should be worried about their extremism.

  58. Who in their right mind believes Hillary would agree to replace Biden if given the opportunity. The VP is a ceremonial position. I doubt that much chang emanates from it. Another term for Obama with a Republican Congress would make everyone in the White House even more weak and ineffective. Hillary does not need to be tainted by the Obamacrat’s mess.

  59. the Adbusters agenda (and its disappearing role in the #OccupyWallStreet movement it instigated)


    Hey, somebody noticed! Whatever or whoever started the term ‘Occupy Wall Street’ — the marchers have now taken over and are doing their own thing. (As happened with ‘Tea Party’ for a while. And with similar core issues: opposing bailouts and crony capitalism….)

  60. DrudgeReport links to an ObamaGear sale through his twitter site: twitter dot com/#!/BarackObama
    Click on the appropriate twitter announcement to reveal formal statement of offer plus comments. I left a few of the most recent comments below.

    This Black Friday, take 10% off all purchases of #Obama2012 gear with code 10%TURKEYDAY:
    Oh how sad. Yes, let us support exactly the thing we are occupying against at your command… #ows
    @BarackObama You know the economy is bad when the White House starts discounting product.
    @BarackObama This Black Friday, consider reforming our trade policy and bringing back good jobs. Your campaigning makes me sick@BarackObama
    This is a JOKE right? You are not REALLY trying to sell things to the ppl u IGNORE, r u
    @BarackObama Shite! Like we don’t have enuff problems in this country!

    Code turkey day. Every day is turkey day with Obama.

  61. Barack Obama and Ed Schultz Make GQ’s ’25 LEAST Influential People Alive’

    President Barack Obama and MSNBC’s Ed Schultz have been named to GQ magazine’s annual list of “The 25 Least Influential People Alive.”

    Although not available online yet, TVNewser published a preview Friday:

    MSNBC’s Ed Schultz comes in at #3. Ouch.

    …Then there pundits like Ed Schultz. Do you watch “The Ed Show” on MSNBC? Of course you don’t. No one does. The only reason people watch “The Ed Show” is they’re working out in a hotel gym and they can’t find a staff member to change the channel to ESPN.


    According to TVN, Obama came in 25th. Can’t wait to see the explanation.

    In the seventeenth position is Daily Beast/Newsweek editor Tina Brown. Forbes quoted from the piece Tuesday:

    Brown spent 2011 transforming Newsweek from a magazine no one reads into a magazine no one reads but everyone despises. That’s what happens when you star-f**k the corpse of Princess Diana by Photoshopping her at age 50 for your cover, then do a separate Photoshop of her holding an iPhone, and then create a fake Facebook page for her that includes wall posts from Deepak Chopra. Did you know Tina and Di were friends? They were! This Photoshopped image of them having lunch with Stevie Nicks is proof!

    In case you were wondering, former Minnesota governor topped the list.

    Read more:

  62. Obama Administration Giving Egypt Over to Radical Muslim Brotherhood?

    November 25, 2011

    This week the Obama administration called for the Egyptian military to step down and allow the still chaotic and uncertain newly formed Egyptian “government” the opportunity to now take full power over Egypt.

    While on the surface such a move appears a gesture toward real democracy in Egypt, further investigation shows it to be yet another naive example by an Obama administration that is either unwittingly helping to ensure the radical Muslim Brotherhood assumes control of the vital Middle East nation – or worse yet, a deliberate policy by the Obama White House to place that radical Islamic group into power – controlling every facet of Egypt from its economy to its social laws. Such a scenario could increase the already considerable volatility in the region.

    As to why the Obama administration would willingly push to have an organization that has openly expressed hatred for the United States, and a desire to rule the world under Sharia Law is unknown. A growing number of Middle East experts have been warning the Obama administration of those groups primarily responsible for the current Cairo protests taking place in Egypt. Jerusalem Post author and correspondent Yaakov Lappin said the following:

    Unlike the first round, the first time that Egypt blew up with this kind of anti-regime violence, the Muslim Brotherhood is now leading these demonstrations, this civil unrest,” he told RT.

    The Muslim Brotherhood has gone from being a low-profile stealthy player to being very much a higher-profile one, because it senses that its time has come.

    …It’s a vision where a fanatical interpretation of the Koran would be the law of the land.

    As for those who persist in doubting the Obama White House, in its increasingly vocal support for the current Cairo uprisings, is not then supporting the Muslim Brotherhood, take into account the following official press release regarding the situation:

    The United States strongly believes that the new Egyptian government must be empowered with real authority immediately.

    If it is the Muslim Brotherhood who are largely responsible for the current Cairo protests – the same Muslim Brotherhood who over the course of the last year took a dominant position within the “new Egyptiangovernment ” the Obama administration is now demanding to be given full power in Egypt, then it becomes clear the Obama White House appears willing to let the Muslim Brotherhood itself now rule Egypt.

    With that seeming fact now firmly in place, take the following quote from a leading member within the Muslim Brotherhood regarding that organization’s views on the United States:

    “I support Hamas, the Islamic Jihad, and Hezbollah. I oppose the peace that Israel and America wish to dictate. This peace is an illusion. I support martyrdom.”

    Those words were spoken by Yusuf Ali Qaradawl, a highly influential Egyptian cleric with strong ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. Ali Qaradawl returned to Egypt in early 2011 and began efforts to organize the various Islamic religious factions into a powerful cohesive group that has since infiltrated every facet of the “new Egyptiangovernment ” Barack Obama now openly supports. The scope of Ali Qaradawl’s influence is such he is being tagged as “Egypt’s Khomeini” – a reference to the ultra-radical Islamic uprising in Iran decades ago. Ali Qaradawl’s hatred of Israel is particularly strong – publicly applauding the efforts of Hitler’s Jewish extermination policies during of the 1930s and 1940s.

    This is the government Barack Obama now wants to see ruling Egypt?

    also, see insightful comments @ link-

  63. “I support martyrdom.”


    Indeed. And we also had Jordan rebels burning Israeli flags on the border today. They want to destroy the peace treaty between Jordan and Israel. Sinai pipeline was also blown up for the 7th or 8th time by radicals who want to destroy the peace treaty between Egypt and Israel. And on and on…

  64. Well…

    President Obama’s last Thanksgiving

    Friday, November 25, 2011 – Bill Kelly’s Truth Squad by William Kelly

    CHICAGO, November 24, 2011 –It’s the Thanksgiving holiday weekend and, in homes across the country, Americans are just now recovering from the festivities. On Thursday, Americans drowned their economic woes in dishes of sweet potatoes, platters of once gobbling turkeys, and pumpkin pies laced with whipped cream.

    They’re just now starting to come out of the tryptophan-induced mellowing that is Thanksgiving. They’re starting to pile back into their cars, buses, trains, and planes after gathering with their families in celebration.

    Gathering to remember what America still means and to give thanks for what we have.

    Unfortunately, for many Americans, that means a lot less than last year and the year before and the year before that.

    But this Thanksgiving is significant in another important respect: this could be Barack Obama’s last official Thanksgiving as President of the United States.

    By November 6, 2012, Obama could be a lame duck president. By November 2013, someone else could be pardoning those presidential turkeys. And, over the years, this president has had quite a few of those. Someone else could be celebrating Thanksgiving dinner with friends, family, and various Solyndra VIPs. Some other First Lady – an Ann Romney, Callista Gingrich or a Gloria Cain – could be finalizing the White House holiday decorations.

    But that is not the only reason we, as Americans, would be thankful.

    If Mitt Romney is elected President, Americans would be thankful for a president who actually understands the free market and values it. They would be thankful for a president with a proven track record of success in private business – his net worth is $250 million – and chief executive experience as a governor of Massachusetts to lead us out of the financial mess we are in. Romney would see Barack’s Harvard law degree and raise him an MBA. Notwithstanding the failure of the Occupy Wall Street movement, America could use a Chairman of the Board about now.

    We would be thankful for a President who would never apologize for America to Europe or anyone else. Who would never say– as President Obama did during his European tour at the beginning of his presidency – that America “has shown arrogance and been dismissive, even derisive” toward Europe. This time next year, Americans would be thankful for a President who believes with all his mettle that America is indeed exceptional and that it should stay that way. Who would never say, as President Obama did during his tour of France in 2009, that he believed in the concept of American exceptionalism in the same way the “Brits believe in British exceptionalism and the Greeks in Greek exceptionalism.” In other words, there is nothing exceptional about America – except in the delusional American mind. We are all the same. If no one country is no better than the other, then why strive to be more? If “exceptional relativism” exists, President Obama has certainly made the case for it and that is not something we should be thankful for.

    If Newt Gingrich is elected President, Americans would be thankful for the former House Speaker’s grasp of foreign and domestic policy. Formulating public policy, understanding its consequences, and navigating it through Congress has been Gingrich’s stock in trade.

    Over twenty years plus years as a legislator, Gingrich’s aggressive style earned him both friends and foes inside and outside the Beltway. But with congressional gridlock threatening America’s economic stability, leadership is needed and President Obama has been noticeably absent.

    Even the President’s most passionately biased defenders have criticized his lack of leadership on critical issues such as the debt ceiling and the super committee failure. President Obama used to give MSNBC’s Chris Matthews a thrill up his leg but no more. Just last week, Matthews complained, “I hear stories (from members of Congress) that you will not believe. Not a single phone call since the last election.” That isn’t leadership.

    But a President Gingrich, with his demonstrated hands-on management style, would be calling and lobbying members of Congress. Americans would be thankful that the Commander-in-Chief wasn’t another Turkey-in-Chief.

    But if any of the GOP presidential candidates were elected President – Herman Cain, Ron Paul, Rick Santorum, Michelle Bachman, or Rick Perry – Americans would be thankful that their president understands the fundamental concept of responsible governing. That it isn’t about golf, photo ops, teleprompters, or misusing taxpayer-funded Air Force One for a date night or for a lavish trip to Spain for the First Family. That it isn’t about having your energy secretary, Steven Chu, sign off on $535 million in risky taxpayer-funded loans to Obama contributors like George Kaiser and their failed solar companies.

    Americans would be thankful that their new President understands that the Washington Way shouldn’t be the Chicago Way.

    Americans would be thankful that we aren’t Greece and that we finally have a president that wants to make sure we will never be Greece. A President who would never try to junk America’s tried and true capitalist system and replace it with a failed European socialist one. A president that understands that you just can’t spend and spend and borrow your way to prosperity. That this is not the American way and never will be.

    That would truly be something to be thankful for.

  65. New challenge to Obama: a White House rival from outside the box

    Online group asks US voters to pick centrist presidential hopeful to break two-party system

    David Usborne Washington
    Saturday 26 November 2011

    While all eyes ahead of the presidential race are on the Republicans and Barack Obama, the Democrat incumbent, a new group is asking voters to bypass both parties and pick a third, centrist candidate over the internet.

    Americans Elect could potentially scramble the calculations of both parties just as the starting pistol on next year’s contest is about to be fired.

    It is the latest iteration of the frustration with Washington’s partisan atmosphere and the ensuing policymaking paralysis underscored this week with the failure of debt-reduction talks.

    There has been talk of a third candidate for months. A group called No Labels emerged last year with backing from billionaire Michael Bloomberg, the New York mayor and aiming to force Washington to ditch its partisan ways.

    Howard Schultz, the chief executive of Starbucks, recently began a campaign for a freeze on donations to the two main parties, claiming neither was working for the good of the country.

    But Americans Elect, co-founded and partly bankrolled by Peter Ackerman, an ex-associate of the junk-bond buccaneer Michael Milken, has more developed plans.

    It wants to register millions of voters on its website and next spring will launch a process of online voting to choose a nominee, hopefully from the political middle. That candidate will begin his or her campaign in June.

    Americans Elect has already secured ballot access in nine states, including Florida, Nevada, Michigan and Ohio.

    It means to have slots for its candidate in every state by next summer.

    The history of third-party White House bids is not encouraging. Ross Perot was deemed to have done well in 1992 with about a fifth of the vote.

    John Anderson won just seven per cent in 1980. Yet in both years the incumbent president – Jimmy Carter and George Bush Snr – lost.

    Americans Elect, which on its website declares, “one year to pick a president, not a party”, says it is not interested in becoming a party.

    Nor is it seeking to target the established parties. If online voters pick someone outside the centrist profile the group founders want, they can veto that choice in favour of someone else.

    “I’m for anything that disrupts the system,” Mark McKinnon, a former adviser to George W Bush and now advising the group, told the Los Angeles Times. “What we’ve got now clearly isn’t working.” Names in the frame include Mr Bloomberg; Jon Huntsman, the moderate among current Republican runners; and the former Indiana senator Evan Bayh.

    Critics say that to assume there is a gap for a centrist candidate is flawed because Mr Obama is a centrist, at least in the eyes of liberal Democrats who consider him a traitor to the left. They also say Americans Elect lacks credibility because, unlike the Tea Party, it is the creation of wealthy technocrats rather than grassroots activists .

    “What we have here is secret money bankrolling a process that in the end is controlled by a select group of insiders, not by ordinary voters,” said David Callahan, of the Washington-based policy advocacy group Demos.

    “How is that an improvement over the ‘politics as usual’ that Americans Elect says it wants to displace?”

  66. JanH
    November 25th, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    “I support martyrdom.”

    They support martyrdom for everyone else but themselves-

  67. A little levity from of all things… a robot!

    A guy goes into a bar, there’s a robot bartender. The robot says, “What will you have?”

    The guy says, “Martini.”

    The robot brings back the best martini ever and says to the man,”What’s your IQ?”

    The guy says, “168.”

    The robot then proceeds to talk about physics, space exploration and medical technology. The guy leaves, but he is curious… So he goes back into the bar.

    The robot bartender says, “What will you have?”

    The guy says, “Martini.”

    Again, the robot makes a great martini gives it to the man and says,”What’s your IQ?”

    The guy says, “100.”

    The robot then starts to talk about Nascar, Budweiser and John Deere tractors.

    The guy leaves, but finds it very interesting, so he thinks he will try it one more time..

    He goes back into the bar.

    The robot says, What will you have?”

    The guy says, “Martini,” and the robot brings him another great martini.

    The robot then says, “What’s your IQ?”
    The guy says, “Uh, about 50..”

    The robot leans in real close and says, “So, you people still happy you voted for Obama?”

  68. Just watching BBC news and the lunatics on Black Friday shopping sales in LA, what a bunch of nuts, pepper spraying each other so they can grab bargains, knife fights, pulling guns on people.

    Seriously wtf is wrong with these people, its only a bit of crap with a price tag. This one woman pepper sprayed everyone around the stuff she wanted, all she came away with was an arrest.

    Jesu, people out there get a grip.

  69. Bill Ayers is getting mighty close to home:
    Occupy Harrisburg Invites Bill Ayers to Speak
    Ayers will lead teach in
    November 23, 2011 HARRISBURG, DAUPHIN COUNTY—
    Activist Bill Ayers is coming to Harrisburg. Occupy Harrisburg invited Ayers to lead a teach in and discussion at the Midtown Scholar Bookstore on December 14th. He is also expected to visit the ongoing Occupation of the State Capitol steps. Ayers, a 1960s radical, was a founding member of the Weather Underground in the 1960s and has admitted helping to bomb official sites, including the U.S Capitol and the Pentagon. In the years since he has earned a PhD and is a former university professor.

    Ayers, who has also visited and spoke at Occupy Wall Street in New York City, was invited to Harrisburg by a local Occupy member,0,4697286.story
    h/t gateway

  70. For anyone following the situation in Egypt, the latest news is that the mob is angry with the new prime minister chosen by the military rulers. More anger; more violence; more demonstrations – no surprise there.

    What should concern us, however, is this – ‘the Obama administration called on the country’s military to give power to a civilian government immediately’. Civilian meaning the MB of course.

    Obama wants the new PM to step down immediately! He is, once again, interfering with a foreign election and once again supporting the militant Islams.

    It doesn’t seem like he cares any longer that the world knows he is a muslim!

  71. Obama blocks deportation of 300,000 illegal aliens

    Urge President Obama to Support Unemployed California Workers Over Illegal Aliens

    Recently, various officials within the Obama Administration have announced a plan to suspend the deportation orders of 300,000 illegal aliens (many residing in California) that have already been issued by a U.S. court of law.

    In addition to being allowed to stay in the country, each of these 300,000 illegal aliens
    may also be eligible for work visas,allowing them to live and work legally in states like California, taking away employment opportunities from California residents who are unable to find a full-time job.

    Once again, President Obama has put the desires of the pro-amnesty movement above the California citizens he has taken an oath to protect.

  72. Mrs. Smith
    November 25th, 2011 at 10:22 pm

    Mrs. Smith – we enjoyed the joke – it made the rounds among our friends and acquaintances with predictable results:
    Republicans chuckled. “Liberals” went all turndown, began quoting voter statistics, demographics, insisting that it was the more intelligent of the population who voted for O, etc etc etc ad nauseum – and the friends of Hillary laughed a little ruefully.

  73. Depending on which side you are on…

    The supercommittee failed because Democrats insisted on $1 trillion in new taxes

    By Jon Kyl, Rob Portman, Pat Toomey, Jeb Hensarling, Fred Upton and Dave Camp

    Published: November 25, 2011

    We do not choose to add more to the blame game for failure of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction , but one Democratic talking point needs debunking: that the talks failed because of Republicans’ attachment to the Bush tax cuts.

    The untold story of the negotiations is the significance of the Republican offer of fundamental tax reform. It is critical to understand the interplay between the proposal (dubbed the “Toomey plan”) and existing tax law.

    First, a bit of history. The 2001 and 2003 changes to the tax code reduced marginal rates for all taxpayers as well as the rates for capital gains, dividends and the death tax. For technical reasons, all of these provisions expire at the end of next year — meaning that if Congress does not act, Americans will face the largest tax increase in our history.

    This prospect has put a wet blanket over job creation and economic recovery. It would be the wrong medicine for our ailing economy. As President Obama has famously said, “You don’t raise taxes in a recession.” Partially to avoid this result, but also to try to meet the Democrats partway — given their absolute insistence on big, new tax increases — Republicans offered a proposal that would have both reformed the current code and produced significant new tax revenue.

    Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin rightly called the Toomey plan a “breakthrough” in the negotiations; indeed, it was the only truly new idea offered during this process.

    The essence of the plan was to dramatically reduce the deductions and credits wealthier taxpayers can claim to reduce their tax liability. That would generate enough revenue to both permanently reduce marginal rates for all taxpayers and provide more than $250 billion for deficit reduction. Added to other receipts, taxes and fees, the Republican plan amounted to more than $500 billion in deficit reduction revenue and $900 billion in spending reductions. We believe this lowering of the rates and broadening of the tax base would have spurred economic growth, created jobs and, in the process, generated billions more in revenue from growth in the economy.

    Now, here’s the key: None of this can happen if the current law’s automatic tax increases occur on Jan. 1, 2013. We can’t both reform the code as Republicans propose and undo it all 12 months later.

    Democrats made a point of saying that they would accept the new tax revenue in the plan but that they still also wanted the 2013 tax increase — which, of course, would negate the benefits of the proposal.

    Why do Republicans believe our proposal is preferable to the automatic 2013 rate increases? Apart from the fact that our economy could not withstand the almost $4 trillion tax increase, it would directly and adversely affect small-business investment decisions. Business decisions are highly sensitive to the rates of the capital gains, dividends and death tax, as well as marginal tax rates. That’s why Republicans would leave them alone and raise revenue instead by limiting personal itemized deductions and credits that have much less impact on investment decisions by small-business owners.

    The point is, it matters both how and how much the government takes from taxpayers.

    So it was not some political attachment to the Bush tax cuts that stymied committee success but, rather, the refusal of the committee’s Democrats to acknowledge the inconsistency in claiming to accept the amount and way the Republican plan would raise tax revenue while insisting that the 2013 tax increases (at least those affecting investment decisions) must also occur.

    At no time in the negotiations did the Democratic committee members drop their insistence that, one way or the other, any deal had to include a trillion dollars in new taxes. Republicans believe that would kill job creation and economic recovery. In the long run, a strong economy producing more wealth (and, therefore, more tax revenue) is how we will both reduce the deficit and regain the prosperity that all Americans deserve.

    The writers are the Republican members of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction. Jon Kyl is a senator from Arizona. Rob Portman is a senator from Ohio. Pat Toomey is a senator from Pennsylvania. Jeb Hensarling is a representative from Texas. Fred Upton and Dave Camp are representatives from Michigan.

  74. or…

    The supercommittee failed because Republicans refused to compromise

    By Chris Van Hollen
    Published: November 24, 2011

    On Sept. 8, six Democrats and six Republicans sat down to breakfast at the first meeting of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction. We all knew that congressional gridlock had brought us together, but I arrived with high hopes that we would be able to make the tough decisions needed to address the twin challenges of job growth and deficit reduction. We did not succeed — and a huge opportunity was missed.

    Our failure is being cast as the result of both parties refusing to give ground, and attempts at explanation are dismissed as partisan finger-pointing. That is a convenient narrative, but it ignores the facts.

    Often in politics there is no objective measure for reasonable compromise. Fortunately, in this case the public has a measuring stick against which to judge competing claims. The recommendations made by the president’s bipartisan National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform (known as Simpson-Bowles, after the Republican and Democratic co-chairs) provide a model for comparing the major plans offered by both sides during the supercommittee deliberations.

    First, consider the ratio of spending cuts to revenue increases in Simpson-Bowles vs. the plans discussed by the supercommittee. As documented by the nonpartisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, when you factor in the $900 billion in budget cuts Congress made this year, Simpson-Bowles recommended about $2 in cuts for every $1 in revenue. By comparison, the major Democratic plan reflected a ratio of $6 in cuts for every $1 in revenue. The center noted that the Democratic plan “stands well to the right of plans” offered by Simpson-Bowles and other bipartisan groups. By contrast, the Republican plan fell far short of all other bipartisan plans. Compared with the Simpson-Bowles base line, it relied entirely on spending cuts and actually reduced revenue by permanently locking in tax cuts for the highest-income earners.

    Second, Democrats were prepared to make important reforms to entitlement programs. While strongly opposing Republican proposals to end the Medicare guarantee and force seniors into the private insurance market without adequate support, we were prepared to put on the table all the Medicare and Medicaid reforms recommended by Simpson-Bowles. In total, the mandatory health-care savings proposed by the major Democratic plan equaled those in Simpson-Bowles. And when faced with the Republicans’ “cuts only” approach to Social Security, we considered a plan to strengthen that essential retirement security program through a mix of new revenue and reforms — the same approach taken by Simpson-Bowles and other bipartisan groups.

    Third, in an effort to reach agreement, Democrats presented a plan with significantly lower revenue than in Simpson-Bowles. Relative to their base lines, the Democratic plan would have raised about $450 billion, almost $1 trillion less than Simpson-Bowles.

    There has been much misinformation about the Republican tax proposal. The Republican claim to have raised $300 billion in “new tax revenue” is misleading. In reality, their willingness to raise $250 billion of that revenue was conditioned on Democrats agreeing to make permanent more than $800 billion of the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, which are scheduled to expire at the end of next year — thereby locking in $550 billion of tax breaks for the top 2 percent of earners. Their proposal was further conditioned on reducing tax rates while dramatically cutting various deductions. Analyses by the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation indicate that the Republican plan to drop the top rate from 35 percent to 28 percent, while slashing deductions and preserving the current low rates on capital gains, would increase the tax burden on many middle-income families and give the superwealthy a massive tax cut.

    Overall, the Republican tax proposal fell nearly $2 trillion short of the revenue raised in Simpson-Bowles and, in comparison, increased the deficit by $500 billion.

    While zealously guarding tax breaks for the highest earners, Republicans refused a Democratic proposal to temporarily extend and increase the payroll tax holiday for all working Americans next year. As a result, in January every U.S. worker will face a tax hike — at a time when consumer demand is likely to remain weak and the economy fragile. Republicans also rejected Democratic proposals to use some of the savings generated from our deficit-reduction plan to finance immediate job creation efforts and extend unemployment compensation to people out of work through no fault of their own.

    When measured against the bipartisan standard set by Simpson-Bowles, supercommittee Democrats made every effort to move to the middle and put forward a deficit-reduction plan that met the test of balance. Republican proposals, however, fell far short, relying totally upon spending cuts and achieving $1 trillion less in total deficit reduction.

    After weeks of intense talks, the failure to break the political gridlock is disappointing. We can no longer afford to punt on the difficult choices that we have been elected to address. The path to a balanced and fair solution is clear — but unless both sides are prepared to muster the political will, we cannot get there.

    The writer is a Democratic representative from Maryland and ranking Democrat on the House Budget Committee.


    SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) — A man collapsed while doing some Black Friday shopping in a crowded store, and people nearby continued to shop.

    Witnesses tell some shoppers walked around and even over the man’s body.
    Click here to find out more!

    Family members tell that Walter Vance, of Logan County, W.Va., passed away after being taken to the hospital.

    It happened at Target in the Southridge Shopping Center in South Charleston about 12:15 a.m. Friday.

    Vance got sick and collapsed on the floor while shopping for Christmas decorations for his newly remodeled workplace.

    Vance started working at the Aracoma Drug Company store in Logan when he was 16. He liked it so much, he went to pharmacy school at WVU and has worked there ever since.

    He started a new Aracoma Drug Company store in Chapmanville and had co-owned it since the 70’s.

    Vance was 61 years old. Friends say he’s has had heart problems for years and had open heart surgery in 2000, but his death came as a shock, and what happened in the final moments of his life only adds to the heartbreak.

    “Where is the good Samaritan side of people?” Vance’s co-worker and friend Sue Compton said. “How could you not notice someone was in trouble? I just don’t understand if people didn’t help what their reason was, other than greed because of a sale.”

    One of the late night shoppers tells what really disturbs her about the situation was the lack of concern by the rest of the shoppers.

    An E.R. nurse happened to be one of the late night shoppers and tried to administer CPR. She and an off-duty paramedic who was also shopping did try to help Vance while he was on the floor.

    An ambulance was called to the store. Vance was taken to the hospital, but later died.

  76. Uncle Spammy is feeling frisky today even after all that turkey-

    admin, please check your filter for a catch and release.. 🙂

  77. Pakistan stops NATO supplies after raid kills up to 28 | Reuters
    (Reuters) – NATO helicopters and fighter jets attacked two military outposts in northwest Pakistan near the Afghan border on Saturday, killing as many as 28 troops and plunging U.S.-Pakistan relations deeper into crisis.
    Pakistan retaliated by shutting down vital NATO supply routes into Afghanistan, used for sending in nearly half of the alliance’s shipments by land.
    The attack is the worst incident of its kind since Pakistan uneasily allied itself with Washington immediately following the September 11, 2001 attacks on U.S. targets….

  78. No Treats from Obama

    That is hysterical. 🙂

    Wish I was half as successful at training my son to clean his room.

  79. went all turndown, began quoting voter statistics, demographics


    Thank you for the compliment!

Comments are closed.