Good beginning IMHO.
"Congress Racing to Isolate a Hamas Regime
By MEGHAN CLYNE - Staff Reporter of the Sun
January 30, 2006
"WASHINGTON - Congress is moving quickly in the face of Hamas's victory in the Palestinian elections to slash American funding for the Palestinian Authority and the United Nations and ensure that America moves to isolate the new regime.
Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, a Republican of Florida, will introduce House legislation this week to slash American funding to the Palestinian Authority and the United Nations; designate the Palestinian Authority as a "terrorist sanctuary," and close down some Palestinian Authority offices in America as part of a reduction of Palestinian-American diplomatic ties.
The bill would be the first official move in Washington toward cutting funding to the Hamas-controlled Palestinian Authority, as concern about the terrorist organization's electoral victory has prompted increasingly vocal calls on Capitol Hill to stop aid to the Palestinian Arabs.
The bill is expected to be introduced tomorrow when the House reconvenes for President Bush's State of the Union address, and will start in the House International Relations Committee. Ms. Ros-Lehtinen is chairwoman of the committee's Subcommittee on the Middle East and Central Asia, which has congressional jurisdiction over the Palestinian Authority.
"Abu Mazen and the PA leadership were given numerous opportunities to prove what they're made of - to prove that they're committed to peace and security," Ms. Ros-Lehtinen said yesterday of Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas of the Fatah Party, also known as Abu Mazen. "They showed their stripes. Even after Israel withdrew from Gaza, they refused to disarm Hamas and other terrorists, and they allowed them to gain strength.
"We must ensure that taxpayer funds are not used to assist, directly or indirectly, those who carry out terrorist attacks and those who allow these attacks to continue by doing nothing to combat terror," the congresswoman said.
According to senior congressional staff familiar with the legislation, Ms. Ros-Lehtinen's bill is a comprehensive crackdown on American aid to and interactions with a terrorist-controlled Palestinian Authority or Palestinian Legislative Council. The bill would "prohibit direct assistance to the PA, the PLC, municipalities, and other constituent elements that are 'governed' by individuals associated with Hamas or other terrorist entities," according to a "Dear Colleague" letter obtained by The New York Sun that will begin circulating in Congress today as an invitation to potential co-sponsors. America is contributing about $150 million in aid to the Palestinian government this year.
The legislation would also "audit all committees, offices, and commissions focused on the Palestinian agenda at the United Nations and recommend for their elimination," according to the letter. Ms. Ros-Lehtinen's bill would slash American U.N. contributions proportional to the amount spent by the United Nations on aid to Palestinian Arabs, and on Palestinian Authority-related programs. The Sun reported last week that the U.N. spends about $3.5 million a year on such activities; America shoulders about 22% of the U.N.'s operating costs.
Requests for comment yesterday from the United Nations about the proposed funding cut were not responded to immediately.
According to staff, the House legislation also would reduce America's ties to and interactions with a Hamasled Palestinian Authority, in order both to signal America's unwillingness to deal with terrorists and to protect America from possible terrorist activity conducted under the guise of official Palestinian Authority business here.""
Found this on Neal Boortz' site! Enjoy.
I am sick and tired of hearing about how dumb people are in the South. I challenge any so-called smart Yankee to take this exam:
1. Calculate the smallest limb diameter on a persimmon tree that will support a 10 pound possum.
2. Which of these cars will rust out the quickest when placed on blocks in your front yard?
(A) '65 Ford Fairlane
(B) '69 Chevrolet Chevelle, or
(C) '64 Pontiac GTO.
3. If your uncle builds a still, which operates at a capacity of 20 gallons of shine produced per hour, how many car radiators are required to condense the product?
4. A woodcutter has a chainsaw, which operates at 2700 RPM. The density of the pine trees in the plot to be harvested is 470 per acre. The plot is 2.3 acres in size. The average tree diameter is 14 inches. How many Budweisers will be drunk before the trees are cut down?
5. If every old refrigerator in the state vented a charge of R-12 simultaneously, what would be the percentage decrease in the ozone
6. A front porch is constructed of 2x8 pine on 24-inch centers with a field rock foundation. The span is 8 feet and the porch length is 16 feet. The porch floor is 1-inch rough sawn pine. When the porch collapses, how many hound dogs will be killed?
7. A man owns a Tennessee house and 3.7 acres of land in a hollow with an average slope of 15%. The man has five children. Can each of his grown children place a mobile home on the man's land and still have enough property for their electric appliances to sit out front?
8. A 2-ton truck is overloaded and proceeding 900 yards down a steep slope on a secondary road at 45 MPH. The brakes fail. Given average traffic conditions on secondary roads, what is the probability that it will strike a vehicle with a muffler?
9. A coal mine operates a NFPA Class 1, Division 2 Hazardous Area. The mine employs 120 miners per shift. A gas warning is issued at the beginning of the 3rd shift. How many cartons of unfiltered Camels will be smoked during this shift?
10. At a reduction in the gene pool variability rate of 7.5% per generation, how long will it take a town which has been bypassed by the interstate highway to breed a country and western singer?
I betcha thought that test was gonna be an easy one, didn't you? It's okay if you didn't do all that well. Just goes to show you... There's a hole heap of things that big city book learning don't prepare you for in this life.
As an added bonus for taking the "REDNECK CHALLENGE" here's some Southerly advice that may come in handy down the road a piece... Next time you are too drunk to drive, walk to the nearest pizza shop and place an order. When they go to deliver it, catch a ride home with 'em."
Received this in email so dunno if it's true but it sure is funny!!
Here's a quote from a government employee who witnessed a recent interaction between an elderly woman and an antiwar protester in a Metro station in DC:
"There were protesters on the train platform handing out pamphlets on the evils of America. I politely declined to take one.
An elderly woman was behind me getting off the escalator and a young (20ish) female protester offered her a pamphlet, which she politely declined.
The young protester put her hand on the old woman's shoulder as a gesture of friendship and in a very soft voice said, 'Lady, don't you care about the children of Iraq?'
The old woman looked up at her and said, 'Honey, my father died in France during World War II, I lost my husband in Korea, and a son in Vietnam. All three died so you could have the right to stand here and bad mouth our country. If you touch me again. I'll stick this umbrella up your @$$ and open it.' "
God Bless America
Never met a dictator, terrorist, communist or "hate America" anyone he didn't just fall in love with. Highly ineffective Governor of Georgia which carried through his tenure in the White House. However it's proving amazing exactly what true mindset come streaming through .... thankfully he only occupied the White House only one term!!
I personally hope the US withdraws all aid to the newly elected Hamas/Palestinian government as they appear to be receiving sufficient funding through the terrorist $$$$$$ pipeline.
"A day after Hamas swept to an upset victory in the Palestinian parliamentary elections, former US President Jimmy Carter on Thursday said that Wednesday's voting had been orderly and fair.
"The elections were completely honest, completely fair, completely safe and without violence," the former president said.
Carter, who led an 85-member international observer team from around the world organized by the 'National Democratic Institute' in partnership with 'The Carter Center,' urged the international community to directly or indirectly fund the new Palestinian Government even though it will be led by an internationally-declared foreign terror organization.
"The Palestinian Government is destitute, and in desperate financial straits. I hope that support for the new government will be forthcoming," Carter said at a Jerusalem press conference.
He added that if international law barred donor countries from directly funding a Hamas-led government than the US and the EU should bypass the Palestinian Authority and provide the "much-needed" money to the Palestinians via non-governmental channels such as UN agencies.
"Regardless of the government, I would hope that potential donors find alternative means to be generous to the Palestinian people [even] if the donor decides to bypass the Palestinian government completely," Carter said, stressing that his main concern was to avert the "suffering" of the Palestinian people, which he said could lead to a new cycle of violence.
He noted that the heavily funded Palestinian Government would run out of money at the end of next month.
Hamas, the largest and most powerful of the Palestinian terror organizations, which advocates Israel's destruction, has carried out scores of bombings over the last five years of Palestinian violence, attacks which have killed hundreds of Israeli civilians.
Earlier Thursday, Israeli statesman Shimon Peres had opined in a radio interview that international aid to a Hamas-led government would likely be terminated.
The former Democratic president's comments came as US President Bush said that Hamas cannot be a partner for Middle East peacemaking without renouncing violence, reiterating that the United States will not deal with Palestinian leaders who do not recognize Israel's right to exist.
Carter, who has long supported the participation of Hamas in the Palestinian elections, voiced the hope that the Islamic terror group would act "responsibly" now that it had won the elections.
"My hope is that as Hamas assumes a major role in the next government, whatever that might be, it will take a position on international standards of responsibility," he said at the news conference, held at an east Jerusalem hotel.
The 85-member election observers team, which was led by Carter, former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Blidt former Albanian President Rexhep Meidani and former Spanish Foreign Minister Ana Palacio, included political and civic leaders from 22 countries around the world.
"It is now up to the elected leaders and representatives to construct genuinely democratic institutions and processes that will bring the peace and prosperity that the Palestinian people deserve, within a free and independent state," the group said in a preliminary report on the parliamentary elections issued Thursday.
"It is universally accepted that democratic elections and democratic governance are about employing peaceful means to achieve political goals," the report stated."
From early on intelligence has said that Saddam removed his WMD's took them to Syria and the Baqua(sp) Valley in Lebanon. This is the first page of four detailed by an eye witness to that movement from Iraq to Syria.
Until we get into Syria and unearth them they will remain "we didn't find them in Iraq." Saddam has more than ample opportunity to move them out as the corrupt UN hemmed and hawed, stalled to collect more payola from Saddam's "Oil For Food" as written about extensively by FoxNews.com.
"The man who served as the no. 2 official in Saddam Hussein's air force says Iraq moved weapons of mass destruction into Syria before the war by loading the weapons into civilian aircraft in which the passenger seats were removed.
The Iraqi general, Georges Sada, makes the charges in a new book, "Saddam's Secrets," released this week. He detailed the transfers in an interview yesterday with The New York Sun.
"There are weapons of mass destruction gone out from Iraq to Syria, and they must be found and returned to safe hands," Mr. Sada said. "I am confident they were taken over."
Mr. Sada's comments come just more than a month after Israel's top general during Operation Iraqi Freedom, Moshe Yaalon, told the Sun that Saddam "transferred the chemical agents from Iraq to Syria."
Democrats have made the absence of stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq a theme in their criticism of the Bush administration's decision to go to war in 2003. And President Bush himself has conceded much of the point; in a televised prime-time address to Americans last month, he said, "It is true that many nations believed that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction. But much of the intelligence turned out to be wrong."
Said Mr. Bush, "We did not find those weapons." ................. pages 2, 3 & 4
It's been a given for years that unions are going to be the death of manufacturing jobs in the US .....
I stand to be corrected on these numbers but believe I heard that approximately $6,000 of the average price of a new car is represented by union negotiated benefits paid to workers. No wonder GM and Ford are in deep trouble moving manufacturing to countries where there are NO unions.
Excellent commentary on damage caused by unions, also factoids about Fair Tax and its ability to allow our economy to flourish. Understand Washington's main objection to Fair Tax is that it takes the power out of the hands of legislators and puts it back into the hands of the people.
Fair Tax is a consumption tax which eliminates all payroll taxes including Social Security and allows everyone to bring home exactly what they've earned. The federal government is funded by what people spend and if they're not happy with how their money is being spent in Washington, then they can stop purchasing taxable items. Food and drugs will not be included as a taxable item so necessities can still be purchased.
Nosiree Washington is not happy about Fair Tax and won't enact it unless we demand that they do.
"WHAT COULD HAVE SAVED 30,000 JOBS?
"The news from Ford Motor Company's CEO hit hard across the country yesterday. Ford is going to cut from 25,000 to 30,000 jobs and will close 14 Ford plants over the next six years. The plant in Atlanta is one of those that will close. This is going to hurt a lot of people. That's sad. It's also sad that this could have been prevented.
Blame can be spread, though not equally shared, to Ford management, the workers and the federal government. No doubt management made mistakes in design, innovation and marketing. The workers made mistakes because they forgot who was actually providing them with paychecks, and the federal government takes a huge share of the blame for our punishing corporate tax code.
Let's talk unions for a moment. I saw some clips on TV this morning from plant workers who were understandably upset over losing their jobs. One woman was saying that Ford gave her everything she had. It wasn't a gift, she worked for it. Another woman was saying that McDonalds just can't absorb all these workers. How's that for ignorance? She actually thinks that those are the choices? Build cars for Ford or flip burgers? There's a woman whose knowledge of the job market is practically nonexistent. The fact is, however, that the United Auto Workers have played a huge role in making Ford and other American auto manufacturers non-competitive in the worldwide automobile market.
Have you been around a major union auto plant lately? Look at the bumper stickers on the cars. You'll see many more bumper stickers that say "UAW" than you will that say "Ford." Watch the workers as they arrive or leave on a chilly day. They're wearing UAW jackets, not Ford or Chevy jackets. Many of these people have far more loyalty to their union than they do to the company that is actually writing their paychecks. The financial burden that has been on these automakers by inflated union contracts has been crippling. Many years ago the UAW developed a game plan for bleeding the automakers dry. They would pick one of the big-three, either Ford, Chrysler or General Motors. They would then hit the target automaker with a demand for huge pay and benefit increases. That automaker would balk, and the UAW would go out on strike. Finally, after huge loses, the automaker would cave. A new contract would be signed, and the unions would then force that contract on the other automakers. Over the years these contracts created a burden on the automakers that could not be sustained. In some cases these automakers can't even lay off employees without having to continue their paychecks years into the future.
Now .. the government. Do not for one moment discount the effect our onerous tax code has on companies like Ford The United States has perhaps the most crushing tax burden of any major player in the industrialized world. Our politicians, eager for money to spend on vote-buying programs, long ago figured out that they could hide the tax burden of the American working man and woman behind the illusion of corporate taxes. These politicians would play on the economic ignorance of the American people -- an ignorance fostered by our system of government education -- by pretending to shift a good portion of the tax burden from the people to those evil, greedy corporations. Some Americans are waking up to this ruse. More Americans have now learned that these corporations don't actually pay taxes, they merely collect the taxes from their customers, their shareholders and their employees and pass them off to the government.
Several years ago Chrysler Corporation merged with Daimler Benz. After the merger was announced the bean counters and lawyers started to work out the details. One detail would be just where the new corporation would be headquartered. A study was conducted comparing the tax consequences of being a U.S. corporation vs. being a German corporation. Germany won. The new corporation would save a huge amount of tax money being headquartered in Germany vs. the U.S., so it became Daimler-Chrysler.
Now ... what could have saved these jobs and plants? Better management? Sure! It also would have helped if the UAW members had actually remembered that they worked for Ford and not for their union. It also would have helped a great deal if Ford had been more competitive in the global market .. a competitive edge that our tax system would not allow.
This, of course, brings us to the FairTax. What if Ford Motor company could operate in the United States with no tax component whatsoever on capital or labor? What if every company operating in this country could operate free of tax consequences? It's not difficult to figure out what would happen. America would become the world's number one tax haven for businesses. A "To Let" sign would soon be posted on the Daimler-Chrysler headquarters in Germany, and 30,000 Ford employees wouldn't be wondering about their future.
Sadly, though, political power is more important than economic health. You've heard me say it before, but it's a central point you need to remember: The FairTax would be the biggest transfer of power from government to the people since our Republic was formed. Politicians won't go willingly to the FairTax .. they'll have to be pushed. They have to be threatened with a loss of their jobs. That's the only way they'll listen, and you're the only one who can deliver the message."
Old news that the CIA used Al Qaida in Afghanistan to defeat the Soviets, as a strategy of bringing down the Soviet Union.
However, very interesting as to how Al Qaida is a direct descendant from Hitler's Nazi regime.
Wealthy businessmen Hassan Nemazee and Faraj Aalaei who are associated with the American Iranian Council, a pro-regime, anti-sanctions group, are vocal Clinton supporters and contributors. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Namazee has contributed $4,000 to Clinton's reelection while Aalaei contributed $1,000.
Insight Magazine, published by the Washington Times, describes their lobby this way: "the American-Iranian Council [AIC], a pro-regime lobbying group [are] trying to get Congress and the Bush administration to lift the trade embargo on Iran."
According to reports in Hillary Clinton's home state, she's also raising money from Gati Kashani, another figure linked with the Iranian Mullahs and who also supports the regime.
On its website, the Iranian American Political Action Committee (PAC) noted, "On Friday, June 3rd , Iranian-American friends of the Hillary Clinton Senate re-election campaign hosted a fundraising event in honor of Senator Clinton. The event took place at the home of Gita and Behzad Kashani in Los Altos Hills, California."
The PAC favors relaxing or eliminating Visa rule for Iranians coming to the United States and believes that Clinton would be helpful in achieving their goals. The Federal Bureau of Investigation opposes such liberalization of the visa process for the terrorist state.
But in full pander mode, the Iranian PAC reported that Clinton attacked United States Visa policy. "Senator Clinton went on to address the audience on topics specifically relevant to the Iranian-American community. She discussed immigration and acknowledged the difficulties Iranian nationals have in obtaining visas to visit family members residing in America. She stated, 'Our visa policy is not only unfair but it's not good for America.'"
During her speech yesterday Senator Clinton attacked the Bush Administration, charging that the US government has wasted precious time in dealing with the looming Iranian nuclear threat.
"I believe that we lost critical time in dealing with Iran because the White House chose to downplay the threats and to outsource the negotiations," Clinton said during a speech at Princeton University, referring to American willingness to allow European powers to handle talks with Teheran.
"We cannot and should not -- must not -- permit Iran to build or acquire nuclear weapons," Clinton added. "In order to prevent that from occurring, we must have more support vigorously and publicly expressed by China and Russia, and we must move as quickly as feasible for sanctions in the United Nations."
This is the exact opposite of what she's said regarding the run up to the Iraq war. Democrat Party bigwigs accused Bush then of not working with our allies -- France, Germany, Russia -- and not allowing the United Nations more time to deal with the Saddam Hussein regime.
According to critics, Senator Clinton's modus operandi is to tell audiences what she believes they wish to hear. Tell Americans to get tough on Iran so as to present herself as tough on national security, then tell Iranians she wants to help them.
At least she did use the "plantation" word which I believe was calculated to bring about controversy as was her latest diatribes against Bush. The release of the Barrett Report brings up questions of her and her husband's own -- excuse the phrase -- culture of corruption.
She's done this before when she criticized the Bush Administration's lack of resolve to stop rampant illegal immigration and to increase border security. However, when a bill went to the senate that would increase funding for border patrol agents and additional detention facilities, she and the senior Senator from New York, Chuck Schumer, voted no.
Then when speaking before a Latino group in California, Hillary told the audience that she would work to get them healthcare and education assistance.
John Spencer, the former Yonkers Mayor and Vietnam combat veteran who will challenge Senator Clinton in November, made the following statement, "Senator Clinton voted against the very munitions necessary to avoid a nuclear confrontation with Iran while at the same time accepting money from supporters of the Iranian Mullahs. Senator Clinton lacks the credibility to keep New York safe and she should return this tainted money."
Found the link to this story on Powerline. Excellent example of what wonders Socialism brings.
"Red tape 'turning best firms away from Europe'
By David Rennie in Brussels
"Europe's most successful companies are turning their backs on EU markets because of red tape, a high-level report said yesterday.
The companies that Europe needed to survive were instead investing more money than ever in the United States and Asia, concluded the report, presented to the European Commission in Brussels.
The lack of investment was so dire that it threatened Europe's "comfortable" way of life. "Europe has to act before it's too late," said the report's author, Esko Aho, the former prime minister of Finland.
The findings made unsettling reading for the EU leaders, ripping into their pledges to build a "knowledge-based Europe" that would overtake America in 10 years.
The reality was the opposite. Not only were US, Chinese and Japanese firms outspending Europe on research and development, the gap with Europe was growing.
Perhaps most damagingly, Europe's most important countries were pouring more and more of their technology investment overseas, as they despaired of the European Union becoming "innovation friendly".
Unless EU governments took bold action to increase spending on research, freed labour markets so skilled workers could move more easily, and stopped pouring taxpayers' money into dying industries, Europe's post-war way of life was doomed.
The report said: "Europe must break out of structures and expectations established in the post-Second World War era that leave it today living a moderately comfortable life on slowly declining capital.
"This society, averse to risk and reluctant to change, is in itself alarming but it is also unsustainable in the face of rising competition from other parts of the world. For many citizens without work, or in less-favoured regions, even the claim to comfort is untrue."
Mr Aho refused to follow the lead of French or German politicians, who have attacked major corporations for investing overseas and called for more "economic patriotism".
He said: "We cannot blame them. They are trying to take care of global competitiveness. Unfortunately, these companies can survive without Europe, but Europe cannot survive without these companies. That is why Europe has to act before it's too late."
His report listed a string of gloomy indicators. In 1992, six out of the 10 top-selling pharmaceuticals were produced by European companies. In 2002, this figure had fallen down to two. European firms invested billions more in the United States than US firms invested in Europe.
The report called for better access to venture capital funding to finance innovative companies and more movement between universities and business. The total pool of risk capital investment spent in Europe had shrunk by 90 per cent since the height of the information technology boom in 2000.
European governments were criticised for continuing to pour state aid into dying industries such as cars, steel and textiles. As part of the so-called Lisbon agenda of 2001 EU leaders committed themselves to spending three per cent of their gross domestic product on research and development.
Halfway through the 10-year Lisbon agenda programme, the EU still spent a meagre 1.9 per cent, far behind the US or Japan.
The commission recently predicted that China, for long seen a source of nothing more than basic manufacturing, is spending so much on higher education and research that it would itself overtake the EU on research spending by 2010.
In productivity, the report noted that Europe badly needed to extract more productivity from each worker."
"2 empty graves found at Bajaur
"ISLAMABAD: Investigators said on Wednesday that they had found two empty graves at the site of a controversial US air strike in the Bajaur Agency, a day after officials said that up to five foreign militants had died in the attack.
However, there was no information about the identities of the insurgents who died in the raid, despite initial US intelligence reports that Al Qaeda’s Egyptian number two Ayman al-Zawahri may have been among them.
Officials said that local militants may have shifted the bodies before their scheduled burials to stop authorities from DNA testing the remains and finding out who was killed in Friday’s missile attack.
Residents of Damadola village in Bajaur, however, have reported that 18 civilians died in the attack, for whom as many graves were dug, and that no militants were in the area.
“The residents dug 18 graves but buried 16 people and two graves were left vacant before they covered them over,” a senior security official said, citing a report by intelligence officials in the region. On Tuesday, the Bajaur regional administration chief said that the missile strike was aimed at foreign militants invited to a dinner and that four or five were killed – the first such public confirmation by Pakistan.
The tribal administration said that two local militants, Maulana Faqir Mohammad and Maulana Liaqat, had removed the bodies of the foreign extremists killed in the attack to “suppress the actual reason of the attack”, but gave no evidence.
On Wednesday, Shah Zaman Khan, director general of media relations for the tribal areas, said that the terrorists’ bodies are now probably in “inaccessible mountainous areas” along the rugged, ill-defined border. “Efforts are underway to investigate further,” Khan said. “The administration is also trying to arrest those clerics who were believed to be there.”
A counter-terrorism official said that several of those killed were believed to be Egyptian.
The air strike prompted mass protests at the weekend and Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz said on Tuesday that Pakistan “could not accept” such attacks. Pakistan has said that it received no warning of the attack despite being a key ally in the US-led “war on terror”. US intelligence sources said that the air strike was carried out by a US Central Intelligence Agency Predator drone. The situation in Bajaur remained tense on Wednesday, a day after officials banned all journalists from the area. agencies."
The positive metrics of the current economy are undeniable. Gross Domestic Product exceeded three percent growth for all of 2005, and has grown for sixteen straight quarters. U.S. businesses created over two million new jobs last year. Hourly wage rates increased over three percent in 2005 to an average of over $16 an hour. The unemployment rate stands at a historically low rate of five percent. The Dow Jones Industrial Average surpassed 11,000 this week for the first time since 2001. But U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is insisting that the economy is spoiled.
Pelosi stated in a January 6 press release,
“The President claims he has created a strong economy, but working Americans are telling a different story. They feel the American dream slipping further from their grasp and they know the reality is that this economy is not delivering for middle-class families.”
Why does Pelosi contend that this economy has failed so-called middle-class Americans, when all the metrics continually prove her wrong? First, she and her fellow liberals have carved out a position on every issue – including the economy, and the war on terrorism – that defines success for their party only if the economy and our efforts in fighting terrorism fail.
Second, in the face of record economic growth, Pelosi and her liberal flies must resort to class warfare tactics to divide America into phantom groups of haves and have-nots. Currently 50% of all taxpayers, starting with a taxable income of approximately $29,000 or higher, pay 97% of all personal income taxes. The truth is there is no definition of “middle-class,” and liberals will never provide a definition. The term “middle-class,” like “working Americans” and “the rich,” has value only in its ability to create class envy among Americans who perceive themselves as victims. The liberal flies are only too willing to encourage class envy when they have lost the war on facts and results.
Congresswoman Pelosi is not alone in her denial of the facts, but due to her elected position and seniority she is the face and mouthpiece of lies and deception. When she proclaims that the potato salad is bad, the other flies show up if they can get a reporter, radio show, or camera to listen to them. The media’s story is not that the sun is shining and USA-Americans are enjoying the picnic, but that a few flies are trying to ruin it.
When liberal media outlets do not fall for the deception, Pelosi and her posse resort to distraction. They challenge and criticize President Bush’s authority to use whatever means necessary to protect our nation from further terrorist attacks. Four years and four months ago Islamic terrorists attacked the U.S. on our own soil, but we have not been attacked since. The liberal flies refuse to believe that the Bush administration is effectively prosecuting the war on terrorism. They need to get over their hatred for the president and start placing national security over their pipe dreams of power. The war on terrorism goes through Afghanistan, Iraq, Europe, Asia and the U.S. The attacks on U.S. soil so vivid in our minds are not going unanswered, despite the liberals’ best efforts to deny a victory over the terrorists who want to kill all of us.
The people of this great nation deserve the truth on the economy and the war on terrorism based on the undeniable facts. USA-Americans also deserve integrity and honesty from their elected officials, no matter what political party or ideology they represent.
National security and the economy are our two most important issues. One of our greatest concerns should be the extent to which professional politicians will lie about these issues to promote their political agendas and their next election. A professional politician who places her political career and the leftist ideology over economic freedom and a secure homeland for all Americans is no longer a fly bothering our picnic on a sunny day. As General Douglas MacArthur once stated, “I am concerned for the security of our great nation; not so much because of any threat from without, but because of the insidious forces working from within.”
Herman Cain is host of the nationally syndicated radio talk show The Bottom Line with Herman Cain and a contributing columnist on Townhall.com.
'Real Power Is Something You Take'
By James H. Joyner Jr
Source Tech Central Station Daily
"The controversy over President Bush’s ordering the NSA to monitor phone conversations without a warrant is the latest in a long line of fights over executive authority during wartime. Congress has been increasingly frustrated at being cut out of the decision loop in matters ranging from the conduct of the war in Iraq to the treatment of prisoners in Guantánamo Bay. South Carolina Republican Lindsey Graham asked a very pointed question during the Alito confirmation hearings: “Do you believe that any president, because we're at war, could say the statute on torture gets in the way of my ability to defend the United States, therefore, I don't have to comply with it?”
Liberal blogger Kevin Drum poses a more fundamental question: What is a wartime president? He acknowledges that, “It’s safe to say that whatever Bush’s NSA program actually involves, no one would have batted an eyelash if FDR had approved a similar program during World War II.” Still, the United States has, to varying extents, been in a state of war for most of the last 60 years. Where do we draw the line?
Nearly half a century ago, legal scholar Edward S. Corwin wrote that, “The Constitution is an invitation to struggle for the privilege of directing American foreign policy.” His argument was that, while the Framers clearly intended for the legislature to be the predominant branch in domestic policy, both branches had substantial power in the realm of international affairs without bright lines to delineate them. Most notably, the Congress had the power to declare war but the president, as Commander-in-Chief, had the power to send troops into harm’s way.
Fictional “Dallas” patriarch Jock Ewing once told his equally fictional son, Bobby, that “Nobody gives you power. Real power is something you take.” All of our great presidents -- and some of the less-than-great ones -- took great liberty with the Constitution. The have seized the initiative and forced Congress to react.
Teddy Roosevelt quipped, “I took the canal zone and let Congress debate, and while the debate goes on the canal does also.” More famously, he solved a dispute with Congress over sending the fleet around the world thusly:
“The head of the Senate Committee on Naval Affairs announced that the fleet should not and could not go because Congress would refuse to appropriate the money—he being from an Eastern seaboard State. However, I announced in response that I had enough money to take the fleet around to the Pacific anyhow, that the fleet would certainly go, and that if Congress did not choose to appropriate enough money to get the fleet back, why, it would stay in the Pacific. There was no further difficulty about the money.”
He understood that, while Congress theoretically has the power to thwart the president, it is politically unfeasible if the action is popular.
As Drum noted, Franklin Roosevelt claimed and was granted extraordinary powers during the war. Indeed, he asserted the right to ignore laws passed by Congress that he deemed harmful to the war effort. On September 7, 1942 he demanded that Congress repeal certain provisions of the Emergency Price Control Act and wrote,
“In the event that the Congress should fail to act, and act adequately, I shall accept the responsibility, and I will act. . . . The President has the powers, under the Constitution and under Congressional acts, to take measures necessary to avert a disaster which would interfere with the winning of the war. I have given the most thoughtful consideration to meeting this issue without further reference to the Congress. I have determined, however, on this vital matter to consult with the Congress. . . . The American people can be sure that I will use my powers with a full sense of my responsibility to the Constitution and to my country. The American people can also be sure that I shall not hesitate to use every power vested in me to accomplish the defeat of our enemies in any part of the world where our own safety demands such defeat. When the war is won, the powers under which I act automatically revert to the people--to whom they belong.''
Congress acceded to this demand, so we never heard from the judiciary whether the president could so brazenly flout the law. In February of that same year, FDR issued, “by virtue of the authority vested in me as President of the United States, and Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy,'' Executive Order 9066, ordering Japanese-Americans to be placed in detention centers. The Supreme Court upheld this order in Korematsu v. U.S. (1944).
World War II was followed, with almost no hiatus, by the Cold War and the National Security Act of 1947. That legislation further centralized national security policy in the White House and further isolated Congress. This was quickly followed by an undeclared war in Korea, a slow descent into war in Vietnam, and numerous military and intelligence operations of dubious legality, especially in Latin America.
Arthur Schlesinger dubbed this largely unchecked growth of executive power the Imperial Presidency. Congress reasserted itself with the 1973 War Powers Act and the 1975 Church Committee hearings but the momentum was too great. Presidents have largely treated the former with impunity and the latter, while halting some of the abuses of the past, has received substantial blame for the intelligence failures leading up to the 9/11 attacks.
If the Constitution is “an invitation to struggle,” it is one that presidents have been winning since the 1940s. The modern president has reversed the Constitutional presumption that Congress is the preeminent branch and the president secondary. Since Roosevelt, it has been axiomatic that "the president proposes, Congress disposes." That is especially true in foreign policy and even more so in national security matters.
It's true that Bush doesn't have the degree of autonomy in this war as FDR and Lincoln did in theirs. But that's mostly a function of public perception of the nature of a war--what he can get away with, to put it more crassly--than any limitation of constitutional power. Much of what FDR and others have done is extraconstitutional. But bold wartime leaders have been flouting the Constitution since at least Lincoln, with the full support of the public.
James H. Joyner, Jr., Ph.D. is a former Army officer who writes on national security affairs at the Outside the Beltway weblog.
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