Archives for November 2011
Earlier this evening, a group of us from BlogCon visited Occupy Denver. We had been reading all day that there would be a clash at some point between police and protesters in the park across the street from the Colorado State Capitol. Lachlan Markay from the Heritage Foundation had been tweeting updates showing the police, decked out in riot gear, preparing to enter the park.
As you can see in the video below, the so-called “occupiers” tried to block off the street before police pushed them back into the park. Police knocked down their tents and forced them to leave. According to the Denver Post, many of the protesters left before the police forcibly removed them. Some of the protesters eventually made their way to the 16th Street Mall, which is maybe 400 feet from the hotel hosting BlogCon. More than a dozen protesters were arrested.
They came back just after 5pm yesterday evening. Unlike earlier in the day when things got a little tense, this was peaceful for the most part and I think there was some genuine discussion from some folks on each side.
After doing the “mic check,” a creepy part of the protests where the words of the speaker are repeated by the rest of the group, Occupy Denver acknowledged that the tea party was created a result of frustration with bailouts. They also expressed opposition to Barack Obama, which was met with cheer from those of us outside.
You can watch most of their protest in the video below:
I spoke to a medicinal marijuana patient that was part of the group. I told her that I believe the War on Drugs was a failure and that I didn’t believe that she should be threatened with jail time for using what relieved her of whatever pain she was in. But then she told me that it needed to stay out of corporate hands, but instead remain “private.” I explained to her that corporations were private entities, which she refused to acknowledge.
As was anticipated, Occupy Denver showed up at BlogCon, though a little earlier than expected. A handful of them tried to force their way into the conference, but they were turned away; but not before engaging some of us. Unfortunately, they didn’t bring their leader with them (looks like the $10 I spent on dog treats went to waste).
After 20 minutes or so of “occupation,” the protesters left the building, being followed by BlogCon attendees. I’ll post more video from others as soon as they become available:
A frequent criticism of congressional Democrats from conservatives is that they didn’t pass a budget during their time in power. In fact, it has been over two years since Congress acted on one of its most basic functions. Keep in mind that Democrats held substantial margins in both chambers for two years, so there was really is no excuse to pass Continuing Resolution after Continuing Resolution.
Of course, if you listen to ex-Speaker Nancy Pelsoi, who discussed the subject with Jon Stewart on Wednesday, it’s all Republicans’ fault:
This is relevant because Republicans on the Super Committee have made some substantial concessions in a tax reform deal that would raise taxes, through closing loopholes, by $500 billion. This is a political risk for Republicans as it risk alienating their base, who is rightfully upset at the prospect of raising taxes. Many would no doubt agree that tax reform is a great idea, provided that the revenues are used to finance lower tax rates, not send more money to be wasted by bureaucrats and statists in Washington.
During our recent Q&A with Harmon Kaslow, producer of Atlas Shrugged: Part 1, he confirmed that the second installment of the film series based on Ayn Rand’s magnum opus would indeed be made. In a podcast with the Heritage Foundation, Kaslow offered more details:
It was no coincidence that “Atlas Shrugged Part 1” made its box-office debut on tax day, April 15, earlier this year. So it was only appropriate that the DVD release would fall on Election Day.
Harmon Kaslow, the movie’s producer, visited Heritage’s Bloggers Briefing today to talk about the film and preview “Atlas Shrugged Part 2,” which is slatted for a fall 2012 release. He also visited our Robert H. Bruce Radio Studio to share his thoughts on Hollywood, how the Internet has transformed movie marketing and the relevance of Ayn Rand in today’s culture.
The special-edition DVD includes several exclusive features. Kaslow hopes the Google Affiliate Network offers fans of Rand an opportunity to promote the work virally. Several organizations, most notably FreedomWorks, are also helping to distribute the DVD.
If you listen to the media, Tuesday’s election were a mixed bag nationally and a disaster for Republican the ever crucial swing state of Ohio due to voters overturning limitations placed on collective bargaining rights for public-sector workers, which was passed by the legislature earlier this year.
Democrats and labor unions raised some $30 million trying to defeat the effort. Passage of the referendum is certainly bad news for Ohio taxpayers, who will no doubt be hit with the ever-expanding costs of public-sector salaries and benefits.
What has gone under-reported is that Ohioans voted overwhemling against the individiual mandate, a central piece of ObamaCare, by supporting a separate ballot measure:
Voters in Ohio approved a measure Tuesday night disapproving of President Obama’s healthcare law.
We’re a little late to the story on this, but as you may have heard President Barack Obama suspended a 15-cent Christmas tree tax that was to be applied this year on freshly cut trees for the holiday season:
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is going to delay implementation and revisit a proposed new 15 cent fee on fresh-cut Christmas trees, sources tell ABC News. The fee, requested by the National Christmas Tree Association in 2009, was first announced in the Federal Registry yesterday and has generated criticism of President Obama from conservative media outlets.
The well-trafficked Drudge Report is leading with the story, linking to a blog by David Addington, a former top aide to then-Vice President Dick Cheney, at the conservative Heritage Foundation assailing the president thus: “The economy is barely growing and nine percent of the American people have no jobs. Is a new tax on Christmas trees the best President Obama can do? And, by the way, the American Christmas tree has a great image that doesn’t need any help from the government.”
Tabitha Hale from FreedomWorks came up with the idea of giving Shelby, the dog that was elected as the leader of Occupy Denver, some treats. I volunteered for the task of running out to pick them up, and came back with some quality snackage for our canine friend:
Via Maggie Thurber, it’s because we don’t hate the Jews:
http://www.freedomworks.org/blogcon-2011 — THIS JUST IN: Koch Brothers Tea-Party pet acquisition “FreedomWorks” is hosting BlogCon at the Crown Plaza Hotel TOMORROW … and WE’RE gonna be there!!! 5:00 PM ~ 1450 Glenarm downtown. Let’s show some right-wing media thugs some Occupy solidarity!!! Bring your signs and be ready to make noise! Not sure if this is something to get behind? Check THIS out >>> http://action.freedomworks.org/5478/reject-occupy-wall-street/
That link goes back to a petition that FreedomWorks recently launched in opposition to the blatant anti-semitism that we’ve seen in the so-called “Occupy” movement. Well, that’s classy for a protest that is supposedly tolerant; unless, of course, you’re part of the evil “1%.”
Of course, those in the Occupy movement are anti-semitic are, given their constitutionally protected right to free speech, entitled to voice their opinion; even if it’s disgusting and hateful. But it’s hilarious that they would point to petition as part of their reasoning for the protest.
I’m in Denver this weekend for BlogCon, a gathering of conservative and libertarian bloggers hosted by our friends at FreedomWorks.Over the next couple of days, we’ll be hearing from different bloggers and speakers, including Hot Air’s Ed Morrissey and economist Jim Pethokoukis.
We got word this morning that Occupy Denver, the group that elected a dog as its leader, will be protesting us at Crowne Plaza Hotel this afternoon/evening at 5pm. They’re calling it a “suprise march.” Yeah, that’s not much of a suprise now, but thanks for the attention.
At any rate, it should be fun. I’ll be posting some updates during the conference.