“What we have here…is a failure to communicate.”
In the movie classic Cool Hand Luke, these are the words spoken by the warden to Luke, a young prisoner who makes a brief but daring escape from a chain gang. The warden, a cruel, iron-fisted man who ruled the prison like it was his own dictatorship, was determined to break the spirit of Luke, a happy-go-lucky young man thrown into prison for cutting off the tops of parking meters one night while drunk. His failure to break Luke infuriated the warden, and the escape attempt offered the warden an opportunity to kick Luke violently to satisfy his own rage, as well as make an example to the other prisoners of what happens to those that do not conform to the dictates of power.
The Obama administration has become the modern-day version of that warden. As American citizens become less and less trusting of the agenda of Obama, Pelosi and Reid, having seen the failed promises and resulting damage to our economy, Democrats have moved into damage control.
At first they attempted to woo us by eloquence and persuasion. We were told that 95% of Americans would get a tax cut, that the stimulus bill would keep unemployment under 8%, and that we could add 30 million people to the insurance rolls, increase benefits and still bring the cost down. Anyone who’d ever run a business or balanced a checkbook saw this for the utter nonsense that it was. Yet the Democrats used outright lies, bribery and threats to pass their agenda. Seeing their popularity wane as the “hope and change” of the campaign season turned into the reality of “rope and chains “ of massive debt, they have become more and more desperate to regain control of the narrative.
I was not going to post about this anymore because I’m tired of hearing about it. But last night, Jon Stewart gave a great monologue on the uproar over the so-called Ground Zero Mosque and it needs to be shared.
Like Stewart, I get the reason people are upset about the mosque. But the push back against the mosque has reached a point where it’s not about placing a mosque two blocks from Ground Zero, the rhetoric has reached a point where most of the opposition are condemning an entire religion. They are placing the blame for what happened on 9/11 on an entire religion instead of 19 radical Islamists.
Around three minutes in, Stewarts shows video of Eric Bolling, who was appearing on Fox and Friends, laying out the alleged ties that Feisal Abdul Rauf has to various groups, including Hamas and Perdana. Bolling also speculates on whether or not Iran may be funding Park51, formerly the Cordoba House.
For perspective, Stewart shows a clip of Charlton Heston speaking at the NRA convention in 1999, just after the Columbine tragedy. In case you don’t remember, there was an uproar that wanted the NRA to hold their convention somewhere else.
During his speech to the convention, Heston said:
Tragedy always has been and always will be with us. Somewhere right now evil people are evil things. All of us will do everything meaningful, everything thing we can do to prevent it, but each horrible act can’t become an axe for opportunists to cleave the very Bill of Rights that binds us.
Stewart admits he was part of the uproar, but he also admits that he was wrong:
So this is what change tastes like…pretty much the same as what we were being fed before, except more bitter and by force; like castor oil, except it makes us worse, not better.
At nearly 11PM on Sunday, March 21, 2010, the House passed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the culmination of generations worth of liberal ideological dreams, a year of contentious debate, and months worth of open bribery, extortion, arm-twisting, vote-buying and the use of arcane parliamentary tactics such as reconciliation and “deem-and-pass”, all in order to pass a bill that no one had a clue would end up looking like when it was signed. Why? Because the bill that was signed is not the one that will be implemented. That comes with the passage of the Senate amendments to make the House Democrats happy.
Why would so much time and effort be put into passing a bill that became more unpopular the longer it was in the public eye? Quite simply, because it is not about health care, it is about power. Power of 1/6th of the American economy, which conveys an enormous amount of influence for those charged with allocating those resources and privileges, and power over the health (and therefore life and death) decisions of over 300 million people.
President Barack Obama and Speaker Nancy Pelosi both came into power campaigning on a promise to end the Republican “culture of corruption” in Washington. Instead they doubled down. They promised us the most ethical and transparent Congress and administration in history. They promised debates on major legislation would be broadcast on C-SPAN, and that everything would be out in the open. They promised us a new way of doing business in Washington. We have a new way, alright…the Chicago way. Al Capone would be proud.
Welcome, Instapundit readers!
The House is scheduled to take up ObamaCare just after 2pm. It’s still unclear if Democrats have the 216 votes required to pass it, though there is a claim this morning that the votes are there.
It looks like House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will force a final vote on ObamaCare this week despite the fact that the public wants Washington focus on other priorities, such as jobs and the economy, and without the support of pro-life Democrats. The House Budget Committee released the 2,309 page bill on its website last night and a final vote is expected by Sunday.
President Barack Obama even delayed an overseas trip by a few days in anticipation of the vote. No doubt he will be involved in the arm twisting of on-the-fence members.
Some Republicans, such as Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), are warning that reconciliation shouldn’t be the focus of the opposition against the bill because if the House passes the Senate version, it’s game, set, match. If you want to get an idea of the process that will take place, check out this post from Jamie Dupree.
Denial. It’s not a river in Egypt.
Still, as President Obama and D.C.’s majority legislative leadership strain our belief in a rational governing and representative body, it’s difficult to deny that something has gone terribly awry.
Not to belabor a point so many have made over the last year – and in some cases, decade(s) - but these Democrats don’t seem so concerned with my ability to access affordable, adequate health care as they do their ability to decide without me just what exactly defines adequate, affordable and accessible care.
So I’d like to report that their collective voice raised so stridently on my behalf (declaring as they do my “right” to all the government largesse they propose to provide) no longer has the power to shock my libertarian sensibilities. Yet day after day I find myself wondering how these men and women, whose primary attribute seems to indicate an infinite willingness to pretend two and two equals zero, were ever elected in the first place.
And therein lies the rub.
The Alan Graysons, Nancy Pelosis, John Lewises, Charlie Rangels, Harry Reids and other idealogical heirs to the late Sen. Ted Kennedy were all elected by the people and for the people. We may not like what they’re doing but someone voted for them just as they did Obama.
How did it happen? Good question and one with a plethora of philosophical and political answers. But the most important reason is too close to home for comfort. Thus, we can continue to play the blame game, or we can stop denying the unpalatable truth.
Continuing our “Liberty Candidate Series” of interviews, Jason and Brett talk with John Dennis, discussing his opponent, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, liberty in San Francisco, and his candidacy. Dennis is a “Pro-Liberty” Republican candidate for U.S. Congress in California’s 8th Congressional District.
This special edition podcast is the fifth in a series devoted to showcasing liberty candidates nationwide. Dennis talks about his liberty-focused campaign against the Speaker of the House in California.
This has been an interesting week, largely due to the reaction towards ObamaCare and these town hall meetings springing up all in different parts of the country. People are angry and they want to be heard. Whether politicians want to listen is a different story, as always.
Liberals and Democrats are correct to point out that they’ve previously been shut out of public debate on certain issues, such as the war in Iraq. Republicans mishandled and chided the anti-war crowd, sometimes questioned the patriotism, either directly or indirectly, of those speaking out against what they saw as a wrong.
Taxes were very high, but no real revenue was coming in. That’s because the system of taxes at that time was an early form of income tax that centered on the government taking a large percentage of a farmer’s crops.
So Ching Ti did something bold and innovative: he cut taxes.
Overnight, taxes went from over 50% down to about 3%. Farmers, who had fled to the hills to escape draconian tax rates, now came home and began farming again. To make a long story short, Ching Ti’s greatest problem while governing was trying to keep all the grain in his barns from spoiling.
It seems that ancient Chinese history is good for more than just cutesy script on a fortune cookie.
Though I don’t always like his politics, I like Congressman Dennis Kucinich. Frankly, I gotta love anyone who’s willing to file articles of impeachment against Dick Cheney. Out of the Democrat Presidential Candidates, Kucinich had been my favorite; but, unfortunately the media gave him about as much attention as they gave Dr. Paul.
During Fox Happy Hour, Dennis answers a myriad of questions about the TARP bailout, the impending sweep by the Democrats in Congress and Nancy Pelosi’s strange insistence that a heavily Democrat Congress will actually be “more bi-partisan.”