Friday, 12 November 2010

THE CAROL BROWNER PROBLEM

Ken Berwitz

When it comes to selecting administration members with little real-world experience, but lots of ideological baggage, President Obama is something of a superstar.  But with carol browner - who he couldn't even put through the confirmation process - Mr. Obama has outdone himself.

As Michelle Malkin details in her brilliant expos - which I am excerpting below but hope you will read in its entirety - browner is an unscrupulous liar, a fraud, and a danger to the United States.

See for yourself:

Energy czar Carol Browner needs to go the way of disgraced green jobs czar Van Jones: under the bus and stripped of her unbridled power to destroy jobs and lives in the name of saving the planet. ASAP.

 

One of the Beltways most influential, entrenched and unaccountable left-wing radicals, Browner has now been called out twice by President Obamas own federal BP oil spill commission and Interior Department inspector general. How many strikes should a woman who circumvented the Senate confirmation process and boasts a sordid history of abusing public office get?

 

First, the BP oil spill panel dinged her for disseminating misleading information to the public about the scope of the disaster. In the aftermath of the spill, she falsely claimed that 75 percent of the spill was now completely gone from the system and falsely claimed that the administrations August report on the disaster was peer-reviewed. The false claim contributed to public perception of Browners calculation as more exact and complete than it was ever designed to be, the oil spill commission concluded in October.

 

This week, the Interior Department inspector general singled out Browners office for butchering peer-reviewed scientists conclusions in a key report about the administrations preordained deepwater drilling moratorium. The scientists first blew the whistle on the administrations monkey business this summer (pdf here). A federal judge sided with the misrepresented scientists and blasted the Interior Departments big green lie that its moratorium was peer-reviewed and endorsed by seven experts identified by the National Academy of Engineering.

 

As the court concluded: Although the experts agreed with the safety recommendations contained in the body of the main Report, five of the National Academy experts and three of the other experts have publicly stated that they do not agree with the six month blanket moratorium on floating drilling.

 

While head of the Clinton administrations EPA, she ordered a staffer to purge and delete her computer files to evade a public disclosure lawsuit. Lambasted by the judge for contumacious behavior and contempt of court, Browner claimed it was all an innocent mistake and blamed her young son for downloading games on her work computer that she was trying to erase.

 

During her tenure as EPA chief, she was also caught by a congressional subcommittee using taxpayer funds to create and send out illegal lobbying material to more than 100 grassroots environmental lobbying organizations. Browner exploited her office to orchestrate a political campaign by left-wing groups, who turned around and attacked Republican lawmakers for supporting regulatory reform.

 

Browner, a darling of left-wing billionaire George Soros environmental justice circles and the wife of a top energy lobbyist, is a dangerous woman whose ideological zeal has helped power the Democrats war on prosperity. Sunlight, as always, is the best disinfectant and a much-needed monkey wrench in the Obama job-killing machine.

It is a travesty and a disgrace that carol browner holds any position in government, let alone one this important.

Pressure must immediately be brought to bear on President Obama to rectify his error in making her an "energy czar". 

I understand that there is a long waiting list of President Obama's errors to be rectified.  But if this one cut the line and moved quckly forward I doubt that many people would complain -- other than the sorosian lunatic fringe, which complains about everything anyway.


PLAYING FOOTBALL IN CHEERLEADER OUTFITS?

Ken Berwitz

Ever hear of the Lingerie Football League? 

I didn't until now.  But read this excerpt from a story at newsok.com, and see that it is very much in existence:

The Lingerie Football League was looking toward expanding to Oklahoma City.

The key word: Was.

Mayor Mick Cornett told media Thursday that he will not allow a team to play in Oklahoma City. The Lingerie League is made up of 10 teams that feature women playing tackle football in bras, panties and garters.

The LFL said it hoped to have an Oklahoma City franchise ready for the 2011 season, which would begin in August. However, the league did not have an ownership group in place for an OKC franchise.

Cornett told OKBlitz.com Thursday that he would not let an LFL team to play at the Cox Center or Oklahoma City Arena. Both are city-owned venues. The Lingerie League would need city council approval on several fronts before it could play in the downtown arenas.

I wonder what the cheerleaders wear.  Helmets and padding?

Maybe it would have been a good idea to find a venue not named the Cox Center (yes, I have an alternative name for the venue, but I think I get 30 days for posting it).

Speaking for myself, I'd pay extra to see how they do the hidden ball trick.....

bobw EXCUSE ME- I WOULD TOO ALSO TO SEE THE TIGHT END (11/12/10)


DID HARRY REID STEAL THE ELECTION?

Ken Berwitz

Did Harry Reid win re-election to the senate by fraud?  Was he abetted in his fraud by the Service Employees International Union (SEIU)?  Did his son Rory come far closer to winning the Governorship of Nevada than the actual votes should have placed him, for the same reason?

Carl Horowitz, writing for the National Legal and Policy Center (NLPC) thinks so.  And he makes a pretty compelling case.

Here are a few excerpts from his article - which I urge you to read in its entirety by clicking here:

Votes without voters - the notion seems like something from "The Twilight Zone." Yet this outcome, the result of a mysterious computer glitch, may have helped re-elect Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid over his Republican challenger, Sharron Angle, last week by a 50.2%-44.6% margin. Actually, the "mystery" is very likely the doing of a local of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which nationwide provides votes, money and muscle for the Democratic Party. Critics are charging that voting machines throughout Clark County (Las Vegas), where about three-fourths of the state's population resides, were rigged to place check marks next to Reid's name before a person even had voted. County officials insist that no tampering has occurred. But the possibility can't be dismissed out of hand, especially given that one of Reid's sons is county commission chairman. 

 

...the Service Employees also may be supplying labor for Democrats in a rather insidious way. A collective bargaining agreement (CBA) between Clark County and SEIU Local 1107 puts the union in charge of servicing all voting machines. The agreement reads as follows:

 

The County hereby recognizes the Union as the sole and exclusive collective bargaining representative of the County employees assigned to the classifications listed in Appendix A who are eligible to be represented by the Union except as limited by Section 2 of this Article. The Union shall be notified of additions to the list of classifications (Exhibit A) within seven (7) days of posting for the position classification and shall receive 30 days advance notice of any deletions.

 

Page 75 of this agreement indicates "Voting Machine Technician" to be a classified SEIU position in Exhibit A. Although the CBA expired on June 30, 2010, it remains in force because of language in Article 43 which grants an indefinite year-to-year extension until one party deems it unworkable.

 

Given that SEIU Local 1107 technicians run Clark County voting machines, any glitches in the end must be the responsibility of these workers. And these glitches appear to have been more than an accident. In late October, during early balloting, for example, a number of voters in Boulder City complained Reid's name already was checked. According to one eyewitness, Joyce Ferrara, the problem was rampant. "Something's not right," she said. "One person, that's a fluke. Two, that's strange. But several within a five-minute period of time - that's wrong."

 

Clark County Registrar of Voters Larry Lomax doesn't see any evidence of vote fraud. He cited high-sensitivity touch screens as the most likely explanation for any discrepancies between voter intent and result. He stated that it would have been impossible for voting machines to put a check mark next to a candidate's name without a voter's consent, adding that nobody had reported the problem to him or anyone else on his staff. Nevada SEIU spokesman Nick Di Archangel also dismissed the possibility of fraud. "The machines cannot be compromised," he assured Fox5Vegas.com in an e-mail. Yet such responses raise the issue of why Reid's opponent, Sharron Angle, didn't benefit from these apparent mishaps.

 

Angle's lawyer, Cleta Mitchell, was blunt about what she saw as the reason, adding a new charge as well. In a campaign fundraising e-mail she wrote:

 

Harry Reid intends to steal this election if he can't win it outright. As a result, we need to deploy literally dozens of election law attorneys and poll watchers to combat these tactics at a cost of nearly $80,000. That's over and above our current budget...Now, this week in Las Vegas, at our election hotline, we received reports that some teachers' union representatives were offering Starbucks cards to people to get them to vote for Harry Reid. It is even more disturbing and may be possible that they are using their influence and authority as educators to entice students on behalf of Reid.

 

What raises a cloud of suspicion over Harry Reid's victory by nearly six percentage points is that he actually had been the underdog. Four separate Rasmussen polls prior to the election had Angle ahead. Two weeks before the big day, she was up 50% to 47%. A week later, she'd extended her lead to 49%-45%. In other words, the pendulum had swung in Reid's favor by around 10 points in the final week. That's a rather odd turn of events amid a Republican landslide.

 

It's noteworthy that Senator Reid's eldest son, Rory, serves as chairman of the Clark County board of commissioners and was the Democratic nominee in the 2010 governor's race, losing convincingly to Republican Brian Sandoval. One could argue, in Devil's Advocate fashion, that if Rory Reid couldn't rig his own victory, there is no way he could have done likewise on behalf of his father. It's a valid point, but it doesn't necessarily let Reid the Younger off the hook, who was behind in the polls by at least 20 percentage points. Sandoval wound up winning by 53.4% to 41.6%.

 

It is positively outrageous that in Clark County, Nevada, the SEIU Local 1107, which supports Harry Reid, controls the ballot boxes by contract through their representation of the voting machine technicians. It is not surprising that Senator Harry Reid's name was automatically checked off on the ballot when individuals went to vote. The U.S. Attorney's Office, the Nevada State Attorney General, and the U.S. Marshals need to act now to ensure that the SEIU does not continue to compromise the integrity of ballots in Nevada, and anywhere else in the country.

How badly does the Reid "victory" stink?

You tell me.

If our Attorney General was not a disgraceful toady, and sock-puppet of Reid's close buddy President Obama, I bet there would be an investigation in progress already. 

But he is, so there isn't.

Maybe the new house of representatives can try and institute one.  I wish them luck.

free` Ken I am sure you will want to blog about this story. Scarborough: Top Dems in Senate Have All Told Me That “Obama Has No Idea What He’s Doing” (Video) gatewaypundit.firstthings.com/2010/11/scarborough-top-dems-in-senate-have-all-told-me-that-obama-has-no-idea-what-hes-doing-video/ (11/12/10)


WHAT'S THAT YOU SAY, MR. ROBINSON?

Ken Berwitz

Eugene "Don't introduce me without mentioning my Pulitzer Prize" Robinson has written another gem.

Since not everyone is a Washington Post reader, I will post a few parts of Mr. Pulitz...er, Robinson's column - but with my comments in blue. 

Where's the Democrats' fighting spirit?

 By Eugene Robinson

Friday, November 12, 2010

 

"Why don't they fight back?"

 

That's the question I've been hearing from the Democratic Party's stunned and dispirited base. For the past month, I've been on a book tour that has taken me to Asheville, N.C., Terre Haute, Ind., Austin and elsewhere.

 

Everywhere I go, supporters of President Obama and his agenda ask me why so many Democrats in Washington don't stand up for what they say they believe.  What would that be, Mr. Robinson?  What did they hold back on?  Did they avoid attacking Republicans or Republican positions on issues?  You must think that alan grayson is a pussycat.

 

I confess that I don't have a good answer. What I can say with confidence, however, is that the White House and Democrats in Congress ignore these grumblings at their peril. Call it polarization, call it conviction, call it whatever you like: These are not wishy-washy times. If you don't stand for something, you get run over.  Er, sometimes when you do stand for something you get run over if what you stand for is something the public does not stand for.  The Democratic party lost about 65 house members and a half dozen senators on November 2.  It doesnt take a Pulitzer Prize winner to figure out that voters werent buying what they were selling.

 

I've been hearing frustration at the willingness of Democrats to accommodate a Republican Party that refuses to give an inch. To progressives who may not understand the subtleties of inside-the-Beltway thinking, this looks like surrender.  Which party wrote the so-called stimulus package and the nationalized health care legislation referred to as ObamaCare?  Democrats.  Did they give Republicans a seat at the table to participate in those bills?  Nope.  They wrote those bills 100% and then offered Republicans only the chance to introduce amendments which could easily be knocked right down anyway.  Tell me more about who didnt give an inch, Mr. Robinson.

 

Wednesday night, I gave a talk at Indiana State University. "You watch," said a man in the audience, "the Democrats are going to cave on the tax cuts for the rich, just like they caved on everything else."  Yeah, they caved.  Read the last paragraph.

 

Sure enough, on Thursday I awoke to read the Huffington Post's interview with White House senior adviser David Axelrod, in which he appeared to signal that Obama - with great reluctance - might have to accept an extension of George W. Bush's tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans after all. Otherwise, Republicans would continue to block the Democrats' preferred course of action, which is to extend the full tax cuts only for those making less than $250,000 a year.  No, you hopeless olbermannite:  he is extending the tax cuts because he doesnt want millions of people to see more $$$ taken out of their paychecks next year, and millions of others possibly losing their jobs because their companies had to contract or just go out of business instead of expanding and hiring.  Mr. Obama understands that if this were to happen, those people just might take it out on Democrats even worse in 2012 than they did in 2010.  Do you really believe tax increases only affect rich people?  If so, give back the Pulitzer and get an MSNBC letter of commendation instead.

 

Let's examine this issue a little more closely. Making the tax cuts permanent for the wealthy would increase the deficit by $700 billion over the next decade. Which party claims to be urgently, desperately concerned about the deficit? The Republicans, of course. So which party is prepared to bust the budget, if that's what it takes, to serve the interests of the rich? The GOP. And which party, to get its way, refuses to approve desperately needed tax relief for the bruised and battered middle class? Once again, the Republicans.  Hooboy.  Those rascally Republicans are really pigs. I guess the voters were completely bamboozled by all that media bias in their favor throughout the 2010 campaign.  

 

Now, which party holds the presidency and, until January, ample majorities in both houses of Congress? That would be the Democrats. Which party can point to public opinion polls indicating that Americans support its position that the Bush tax cuts should be extended only for the middle class? That, too, would be the Democrats. And finally, which party somehow appears to be looking for a way to lose this argument and capitulate? Incredibly, the Democrats You really do buy in to olbermannite fantasy, dont you?  If the public preferred the Democratic Partys position on taxes over the Republican position, Democrats wouldnt need a lame duck session to push their legislation through.  The party would have an even greater majority in the next congress than it has in this one.  Wake up, for god sake.  Not everyone lives in your dream world.

 

The conventional wisdom in Washington is that those who say the lesson from last week's drubbing is that progressives should get a spine simply "don't get it." The explanation given by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and some others - that aside from stubbornly high unemployment, one contributing factor was the Democrats' failure to explain their program and counter Republican misinformation - is seen by the conventionally wise as delusional.

 

But I've been meeting an awful lot of progressives around the country who share that delusion Yep, Ill bet you have.  I'm sure you continually commune with "progressives"  - i.e. people as far left as you are.  Im sure you and they disagree on virtually nothing.  Now what about everyone else?  I dont know how to break this to you Mr. Pulitzer, Robinson, but most people are not progressives (the current euphemism for take-no-prisoners left wingers).  Most people are centrist or centrist-right.  In other words, they are what you think of as the extremists -- a little like the Mad Hatter telling us that everyone else is off the deep end, not him.

 

What I'm hearing is frustration, and it's getting louder. I'm hearing the view that the Obama administration, which has done much good, can do better - by speaking clearly, standing its ground - and, when pushed by bullies, shoving back.  "Progressives" want to double down on the positions that generated 2010's election results by pushing them more aggressively?  I'm sure that most Republicans would join with the man you hate, George Bush in saying:  "Bring it on".


PRESIDENT OBAMA'S ASIA DISASTER

Ken Berwitz

I have spent years referring to President Obama as a Chicago machine politician, unqualified for the office of President, and in 100 miles over his head. 

That assessment gives me no pleasure.  I get no positive feeling when events prove me right.  I want a strong, effective President, because it will benefit the United States -- regardless of which party that President belongs to or whether we agree on policy.

Therefore it gives me no pleasure at all to post the beginning of the New York Times' remarkably blunt assessment of Mr. Obama's Asian trip by Sewell Chan, Sheryl Gay Stolberg and David E. Sanger -- so blunt that it had to back off its own headline (I'll explain later):

Obamas Trade Strategy Runs Into Stiff Resistance

By SEWELL CHAN, SHERYL GAY STOLBERG and DAVID E. SANGER

 

SEOUL, South Korea President Obamas hopes of emerging from his Asia trip with the twin victories of a free trade agreement with South Korea and a unified approach to spurring economic growth around the world ran into resistance on all fronts on Thursday, putting Mr. Obama at odds with his key allies and largest trading partners.

The most concrete trophy expected to emerge from the trip eluded his grasp: a long-delayed free trade agreement with South Korea, first negotiated by the Bush administration and then reopened by Mr. Obama, to have greater protections for American workers.

And as officials frenetically tried to paper over differences among the Group of 20 members with a vaguely worded communiqu to be issued Friday, there was no way to avoid discussion of the fundamental differences of economic strategy. After five largely harmonious meetings in the past two years to deal with the most severe downturn since the Depression, major disputes broke out between Washington and China, Britain, Germany and Brazil.

Each rejected core elements of Mr. Obamas strategy of stimulating growth before focusing on deficit reduction. Several major nations continued to accuse the Federal Reserve of deliberately devaluing the dollar last week in an effort to put the costs of Americas competitive troubles on trading partners, rather than taking politically tough measures to rein in spending at home.

The result was that Mr. Obama repeatedly found himself on the defensive. He and the South Korean president, Lee Myung-bak, had vowed to complete the trade pact by the time they met here; while Mr. Obama insisted that it would be resolved in a matter of weeks, without the pressure of a summit meeting it was unclear how the hurdles on nontariff barriers to American cars and beef would be resolved.

Mr. Obamas meeting with Chinas president, Hu Jintao, appeared to do little to break down Chinese resistance to accepting even nonbinding numerical targets for limiting Chinas trade surplus. While Lael Brainard, the under secretary of the Treasury for international affairs, said that the United States and China have gotten to a good place on rebalancing their trade, Chinese officials later archly reminded the Americans that as the issuers of the dollar, the main global reserve currency, they should consider the interests of the global economy as well as their own national circumstances.

The disputes were not limited to Americas foreign partners. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner got into a trans-Pacific argument with one of his former mentors, Alan Greenspan, the former chairman of the Federal Reserve, after Mr. Greenspan wrote that the United States was pursuing a policy of currency weakening. Mr. Geithner shot back on CNBC that while he had enormous respect for Mr. Greenspan, thats not an accurate description of either the Feds policies or our policies. He added, We will never seek to weaken our currency as a tool to gain competitive advantage or grow the economy.

Much of the rest of the world seemed to share Mr. Greenspans assessment. Moreover, Mr. Obama seemed to be losing the broader debate over austerity. The president has insisted that at a moment of weak private demand, the best way to spur economic growth is to have the government prime the pump with cheap credit and government stimulus programs. He quickly found himself in an argument with Prime Minister David Cameron of Britain and Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany.

That is nothing less than devastating. 

There is little doubt that Barack Obama's domestic stock has fallen through a trap door.  And we have talked again and again about how foreign leaders seem to hold him in little esteem.  But this week in Asia we are seeing Mr. Obama being disdained - even pushed aside - by those leaders. 

They clearly do not respect either the man or his economic ideas.  And because a President is the face of our country, they are not just disrespecting Barack Obama, they are disrespecting the United States of America as well.

How hard it must have been for an Obama-supporting venue like the New York Times to publish this article.  I congratulate the paper's news staff on its decision to transcend partisanship and give us the bad, but necessary, news. 

I wonder if it will open the door for other usually Obama-supporting media to take the same plunge.  Will it liberate them to honestly appraise the mess Mr. Obama and his administration - an administration top-loaded with academics and government lifers instead of people with real-world experience - have made of things?  Will they start answering Mr. Obama's claims that this is somehow all George Bush's fault with the sarcasm it so richly deserves?

I guess we'll find out soon enough.

Oh, one other thing.  As you can see above, the cyber headline for this article is "Obama's Trade Strategy Runs Into Stiff Resistance".  That is a revision. 

The headline, and sub-head, in my hard-copy edition is:. 

"Obama's Economic View Is Rejected on World Stage"

      _____________________

 

"China, Britain and Germany Challenge U.S.

 - Trade Talks With Seoul Fail, Too

Now you know what I meant when I said the Times backed off.

Zeke ..... ....... With the Tea Party at home, ..... and all those Tea Drinkers in Asia .... .... poor Mr. Obama .......... ..... .... (11/12/10)


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