Romney finds his inner happy warrior

One of the things that made Reagan such a winner in 1980 was the fact that he was a happy warrior.  Voters had a real choice between Jimmy Carter’s dour malaise (“it’ll be this way forever”) and Reagan’s ebullient optimism in America (“morning in America”).

This year, voters have that same choice.  Please share this video with those who are undecided or who are thinking third party or who just don’t believe in the process any more.  (Don’t bother sharing it with the liberals you know.  It’s like trying to wash a cat.  The cat certainly gets irritated, but doesn’t necessarily get clean.)

Hat tip: Lulu

Inert young people hint at a Romney victory

Glenn Reynolds says that the 2012 election has the possibility to be a “ground glass” election for conservatives:

Last week, I noticed this blog comment: “Romney was not my first, second, or third choice, but I will crawl over ground glass to vote for him.”

A lot of Republicans — and, judging from polls, a lot of independents — feel this way. If there are enough of them, Romney will win, and win big.

He then asks if the signs for such an election are really there, and then spends the rest of his column answering that conservatives are probably that desperate to see Romney in the White House.

In 2008, it was the Democrats who had the “ground class” demographic.  Excited about the possibility of making history by casting their vote for the first black president,  Democrats pretty much dashed and danced over that glass.

Would the outcome have been the same, though, if conservatives hadn’t been dispirited by McCain and independent hadn’t had a surfeit of the Bush years plus serious MSM-induced fear of Sarah Palin?  After all, if both sides are willing to crawl over ground glass, you’re pretty much at a stalemate.  This year doesn’t seem to be a stalemate year.  Instead, the energy that powered an Obama victory seems to have burned itself out.

A good indicator of the apathy amongst those who aren’t diehard Dems is an article in the Marin IJ examining ennui amongst Marin’s extremely well-indoctrinated young people:

When it comes to her top election issue — Israel and the threat of a nuclear Iran — San Rafael High School senior Yael Zoken doesn’t see much difference between President Barack Obama and his opponent, Mitt Romney.

Sir Francis Drake High School senior Anna Jones likes Obama but is disappointed in his lack of major climate change initiatives.

And her classmate, Nathan Harms, said rising debt has persuaded him to consider Romney even though he believes the Republican has been “fairly inarticulate about his plan.”

“In this instance I’d go with the devil I don’t know as opposed to the devil I do know,” Harms said.

As Marin’s newest voters prepare to cast their first ballots Tuesday, they are struggling like their peers around the country to muster the same excitement felt by young people in 2008. Four years ago, many rallied around Obama amid anger at the war in Iraq, a message of hope and change and a sense of history that came with electing the first black president. In the 2012 campaign, issues such as taxes and the economy have proven less electrifying.

If Obama has lost the youth vote — because he failed to deliver on the change he promised and then left them jobless to boot — he’s lost a significant part of the statistical advantage he had over McCain in 2008. In 2008, youthful voters couldn’t get to the polls fast enough. This year, it’s questionable whether they’ll be able to look up from their iPhones and androids long enough even to notice that an election is going in. And while I think people should take their civil rights seriously and vote (“use it or lose it”), having a liberal-leaning youth demographic revert to its ordinary disinterest is good for serious candidates and not so good for the hip, faddish ones.

Are you voting for love of country or revenge against an unnamed enemy within America?

I honestly think this is Romney’s best ad:

Incidentally, regarding Obama’s revenge remark, Jonah Goldberg had exactly the same thought I did: Revenge against whom?

If you watch the clip itself, it’s not clear at all what Obama’s supporters are supposed to want revenge for. Obama mentions Romney’s name in the context of his run for the Senate in Massachusetts — back when Romney was quite the moderate — and the audience starts to boo. Obama says “no, no. Don’t boo. Vote. Vote. Voting is the best revenge.” Revenge for what? Him running for the Senate? Revenge for Romney daring to challenge Obama? I understand Obama is bitter. That’s been obvious for a while. But it’s just a weird and narcissistic assumption that his supporters want “revenge” too. Doesn’t mean it’s wrong, though. Which makes the whole thing even creepier.

The entire choice in this election is right there, in a nutshell:  Do we support the paranoid narcissist who sees enemies everywhere or do we support the man who has a deep and abiding love for the United States of America, everything it’s ever been and everything it still will be.

America’s retired military makes a strong statement for Romney

On Monday, November 5, an ad will run in the Washington Times with the names of almost 500 retired military officers from all of the different forces who support Mitt Romney.  I was lucky enough to get an advanced copy of the ad.  The same email forwarding the ad asked that it be shared with as many people as possible, so that is what I’m doing:


Bill Whittle’s appeal to those who intend to stand on principle and vote for a third party or not vote at all

Bill Whittle explains very clearly why it’s a mistake in this election for those who dislike Obama to a protest vote for a third party, or not vote at all, in order to protest the fact that Republicans are so far from perfect.  It’s a principled stand, certainly, but it is also one that denies the dangerous reality associated with a second Obama term:

If you are thinking of sitting out this election, or casting a protest vote for Gary Johnson or Ron Paul, please watch this video and think very seriously about whether this particular election is the one on which to take a stand.  And if you know someone who is thinking of sitting this one out, or throwing away a vote, please suggest that they watch this video.

A way for both Romney and Obama to give millions to a Hurricane Sandy charity

The Ohio Democratic Party Chairman, knowing that Mitt Romney is a wealthy man, who might have some extra millions lying around, has suggested that Romney give those dollars to a charity that helps Hurricane Sandy victims:

Mitt Romney should have donated $10 million to the Red Cross instead of ‘taking advantage of a tragedy’, the Ohio Democratic Party chairman has said.

‘I think Governor Romney ought to be focused on things he could do and say on behalf of the victims, rather than going to Dayton Ohio – the most important swing state in the country – and taking advantage of a tragedy,’ said Chris Redfern according to the Washington Post.

‘Look, I’m a partisan. I’ll let others judge this. But I think someone of Governor Romney’s wealth could have just written a check for $10 million to the American Red Cross and then spent today with his family. He chose to do something much different. He chose to politicise this.’

That’s almost a good idea.  Here’s the really good idea:

Obama has waiting for him a $5 million check made out to the charity of his choice.  With that money out there, Mitt should make Obama a deal. Obama’s obligation under the deal is to produce his academic records and passport application, by Friday afternoon.  He can do this easily enough by authorizing Occidental, Columbia, Harvard and the State Department to release the records on an expedited basis. For something this big, those organizations should be able to act quickly.  If Obama gets the records released by Friday afternoon, Mitt will donate another $5 million to that same charity.

I think that’s fair, don’t you?

Found it on Facebook: a poster summary of all the Left’s uninformed attacks on Romney

Here’s today’s Progressive Facebook offering:

Point by point, let me show why this poster is really, really stupid:

His support of the middle class by encouraging the auto-industry to go bankrupt?  If you’re not living in Victorian England, when bankruptcy meant that the man of the family ended up in debtor’s prison, while his family starved in the streets, you’ll discover that American business bankruptcies are actually very well-managed, humane affairs.  A company that is put into bankruptcy, not for liquidation purposes but for restructuring, often comes out much stronger.  The bankruptcy process gives it relief from overwhelming creditor pressure, it allows the company to renegotiate debts and labor contracts, and it provides for payment plans that lessen or spread out the debt burden.  Our bankruptcy laws are some of the best things in the Federal codes and regulations.  What Obama did by taking over GM was to screw the creditors and the shareholders, while handing the unions a free gift — all at taxpayer expense.  Hell yes, I supported Romney’s insistence that GM go into an organized bankruptcy.

His lack of support for the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act for women?  I think it was Joe Biden who said it best, when he opined about what a minimal effect the Lily Ledbetter Act has on women’s working conditions:

Ryan voted ​against​ the Lilly Ledbetter Act.  All [it] said was if a woman finds out she’s been treated and treated wrongly– cheated in terms of her salary and benefits at work– that she’s able to sue from the moment she finds out.  That’s all it said.  Because they were locked out they said that if you didn’t learn within two years you were being cheated, then you’re out of luck.  But we changed the law.  It’s not a– it’s a big deal for women, but it’s not a big deal in terms of equal pay.  But it’s an important– and they couldn’t even support that.  Talk about being out of touch.

Keep in mind that Ledbetter’s only problem was a statute of limitations (i.e., the time within which someone can sue for a wrong).  Congress had made it short, the Supreme Court said that was Congress’ prerogative, and the Obama Congress then made it longer in a way that can be very damaging to American business.

His ability to make enemies upon every visit to a foreign nation?  The Muslim world hates Obama.  Obama insulted the Prime Minister of Israel.  He insulted Queen Elizabeth, the Prime Minister, and (when he sent back the Churchill bust) England itself.  He offended our allies in Poland and the Czech Republic when he reneged on a promise to provide them with protection against Russia.  Need I go on?

His experience in “running a business” that buys up companies, breaks them up, and sends jobs overseas?  Romney knows how businesses work.  When a company could be made stronger (Staples), he made it stronger.  When it couldn’t, he spared it (and its employees) a lingering death.  He also created millions upon millions of dollars in the free marketplace, money that benefited ordinary Americans (and their pension plans).  He took the Olympic balance book from red to black, and then he did the same with the Massachusetts budget.  Obama, if I remember correctly, wasted all of the Annenberg Challenge money.

His lack of support for college students and lower interest rates on loans?  Obama said yesterday that banks are evil because they’re in it to make money.  No, Mr. President, banks are not evil.  Banks are necessary, because they provide the funds people use to start and grow businesses.  No loans, no free enterprise.  (Just think of the Muslim world’s absolute prohibition on interest and its absolute paucity of true economic development.)  Interest is the way in which banks earn money on these loans.  I’m opposed to usurious interest rates, but forcing banks to provide low-interest loans to unqualified people is exactly what led to the financial collapse in 2008.  Romney doesn’t want to repeat that error; Obama does.

His hateful, arrogant, racist supporters like Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter?  Do I need to make the usual laundry list of hateful, arrogant, racist Obama supporters?  Okay….  Bill Ayers, Bernadine Dohrn, the Rev. Wright, Father Pfleger, Hugo Chavez, Ahmadinejad, Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong-un….

His ultra wealthy supporters like the Koch Brothers?  Two words:  George Soros.  Two more words:  John Kerry.  You can add others to the list, but I think those two say it all.

His ability to turn into a chameleon wherever he goes?  Cast your mind back to 2007 when Obama, raised in Indonesia and Hawaii, went before a black audience and started speaking as if he just got off the plantation.  Interestingly, Hillary and Joe do the same thing.  Romney is never anything but what he is:  an upper middle class white guy who wears a suit.

His experience hiding his money in Cayman Island accounts?  I think we’ve already learned about Obama’s Chinese/Cayman Island pension.  Democrat policies make investing in the U.S. a risky business.

Or is it just because he’s a white dude and you just HATE Obama?  I don’t hate Obama’s color.  I hate his politics.  I couldn’t care less about Romney’s color or sex.  I like his politics.

Posters such as the one above work because people are ignorant.  They are ignorant because they want to be and because the MSM keeps them that way.  It’s up to us — the informed people — to spread a little knowledge around.

Found it Facebook: Obama, Romney, and the hired help *UPDATED*

A picture is making the rounds amongst my liberal Facebook friends, complete with the caption that “This says it all to me.”

I’m actually not sure what “all” the picture says. That Romney smiles at people performing a service for him while Obama gives them a fist bump?

If the Obama picture had shown him grabbing the mop from the janitor and himself scrubbing the floors, I might have been more impressed.  But the fact that he fist bumps for the camera really doesn’t tell me anything at all.  Likewise, I’d be interested in know what the tip and salary the tarmac guy helping Romney received versus what the custodian greeting Obama earns.  That information might actually tell us something . . . or not.

The one thing I can assure you is that pairing those two pictures tells me nothing about Obama’s and Romney’s individual merit or their ability to govern the United States of America.  It does, however, tell me a lot about Progressives that they can look at these two out-of-context pictures and seem to find some deep meaning — and what it tells me is that, if these voters prevail again in November — we’re in serious trouble.

UPDATE:  Thanks to Plain ol’ Charles, we now know that Romney wasn’t the effete rich guy having his shoes cleaned, he was getting a pre-flight security check.

Never argue with the crazy lady; or, why Romney had a good strategy for the third debate

We all know crazy people.  I don’t mean the kind of crazy people who believe that cats rule the world and that Satan is living in the begonia.  I mean the people with personality disorders who assiduously work to shape reality so that it matches their own warped and damaged inner world.  Many of these crazy people are very high functioning because their craziness leaves them driven, so they work hard, and manipulative, so they know which buttons to push to get other people to help them achieve their goals.

One of the distinguishing characteristics of these crazy people is that they lie.  Except that, as far as they’re concerned, they’re always telling the truth.  You see, for certain types of crazy people, truth is a fluid concept that is defined, not by stubborn facts, but by their emotional needs at any given time.  When people I know come to me griping about an unpleasant, reality-bending interaction with one of these people, I always say the same thing, “Never argue with the crazy lady.”

During the second debate, Mitt Romney tried to argue with the crazy lady.  Had Obama been completely sane when Mitt tried to get Obama to acknowledge that his administration pretended that the Benghazi’s deaths were a movie review that got out of hand, Obama would have embarked upon a long, circuitous explanation about his inadvertent failure to identify clearly September 11′s events in Benghazi as a terrorist attack.  Instead, Obama, who is the functional equivalent of a crazy lady, lied.  And because Obama had an enabler sitting there with a microphone, the lie got reinforced.  (And yes, I know that Obama used the phrase “acts of terror” in his Rose Garden presentation on September 12, but it’s very, very clear from reading the entire transcript that he was claiming that a video was what caused the events in Benghazi.  Only a crazy lady or an enabler would understand the tenor of his remarks in any other way.) Obama told other lies during the first two debates (about sequestration and Israel, for example), but that’s the one that sticks in my mind because Romney got so badly winded by the Obama/Crowley sucker punch — one belied by facts:

Mitt’s no fool.  He realized after the second debate that you can’t argue with the crazy lady.  And because the crazy lady has enablers all over the media, even if his arguments are entirely accurate and Obama’s entirely false, Mitt won’t get the benefit of second day analysis.  Were Mitt to challenge Obama directly, Obama’s crazy lady lies would live on, while Mitt’s truthful assertions would vanish.  And so a strategy was born:  Mitt simply ignored Obama.  Yes, he let lies go by, and yes it was irritating to those of us who know the facts, but Mitt understood that, whatever he threw at Obama, Obama would counter with a falsehood.  Heck, Obama’s entire debate performance was a falsehood, one that ignored years of speeches and conduct.  For a sane person, entering this kind of alternate universe and trying to function in it according to rational rules can only lead to disaster.

I think Mitt did the right thing, and I think the polls will support him.  He bypassed crazy-land and went directly to the American voters.  To them, he showed himself to be peaceful, intelligent, knowledgeable, and possessed of a solid vision of America’s place in the world.  It was a somewhat bizarre strategy, but in Bizarro World those are the only strategies that work.

Mitt versus Obama, or Ward Cleaver versus Eddie Haskell

When it became obvious that Mitt was going to be the Republican nominee for President, I started doodling around with my strong sense that the November match-up would look very much like a contest between Ward Cleaver and Eddie Haskell, of Leave it to Beaver fame.  In May, I put up a post, which was my first attempt at expanding on that image.

Usually, once I’ve written something, it’s out of my system.  This one, though, wouldn’t go away.  The more I watched the campaign progress, the more the Ward v. Eddie analogy seemed right on the money.  I eventually sat down and completely rewrote the post.  I then offered the expanded, rewritten, and updated article to PJ Media (after having advised them about the earlier iteration), and PJ Media kindly accepted it.

You can read my full-blown, up-to-date Ward v. Eddie analysis here.

Romney, even if he didn’t win the debate, walked out of the debate a winner *UPDATED*

What one can say with certainty about the last presidential debate is that it is not a game-changer — which is good for Romney, because the game is currently scoring in his favor.  In that way, it was a nothing of a debate.  Nevertheless, there were aspects of the debate that were fascinating.

Fascinating aspect No. 1:  Obama’s rhetoric had absolutely nothing to do with his presidency.  If I had never heard of Obama before last night and then tuned into the debate, I would have been impressed by what he said (except for the nasty tone, which I’ll get to later).  He spoke about a balance of diplomacy and might, he spoke of a strong military, he claimed to be a true friend to Israel, he understood that America is a world leader, he touted America’s responsibility to advance freedom, he recognized that one can’t be a leader with a disastrous home economy, he said he supported Iran’s abortive Green revolution, and he said that he would never allow Iran to get the bomb.  It was as if the last three and a half years never happened.

The Obama of the debate never had kill lists for Pakistan and crawl-on-the-belly lists for Russia.  He didn’t offend England, and Poland, and the Czech Republic, while making nice to Chavez and Morsi.  Nor did the debate Obama have anything to do with depleting the military to a point where it’s at its weakest since before WWI.

The talking head with saw last night is so tightly linked with Israel that, not only is there no daylight between the two, but he and Netanyahu will be the first in line when gay marriage is federally recognized.  This seems a little bit at odds with the insults, slights, demands, and cold-shoulders the administration aimed at Israel for more than three years.  Obama’s debate posture pretends that, when it came to Israel’s borders, Obama didn’t make a precondition for negotiations more extreme even than the Palestinians were demanding. This Obama, unlike the real world Obama, is BFFs with Israel.

The debate Obama was a champion of American exceptionalism, a man who never went around the world explaining to foreign countries that America isn’t so great and, if she leads at all, she should lead from behind.  This was not a man who boasted that he would fundamentally transform America.  Nor was this a man who made it plain that his fundamental transformation included attacking America’s core identity, many of her constitutional rights, and her economic system.

Finally, last night’s Obama was so tough, I’m surprised he hasn’t already bombed Iran back into the Stone Age.  Where was the man who stood aside while the Iranian people took to the streets demanding greater freedom?  Where was the man who has consistently worked to weaken the sanctions Congress has imposed on Iran?  And where was the president who has been so passive about Iran’s nuclear program that Ahmadinejad has endorsed him for president?

Frankly, I found this Obamabot irritating.  He’s like the guy who, behind closed doors, abuses his wife but, in public, calls her “Sweetie” and holds her hand,  He’s a brute, not because he doesn’t know any better (his public behavior shows that he does), but because he wants to be a brute.  That’s where his private inclinations lie.  Last night, Obama demonstrated that he knows perfectly well what is good for America and what Americans want, but his behavior over the past three years shows that he wants to be a weak, anti-American, anti-Israel, anti-military leader.  He’s the presidential equivalent of a wife beater.

Fascinating aspect No. 2:  Romney ignored Obama.  After trying to go head-to-head with Obama in the second debate, Romney went back to his first debate strategy of talking directly to the American people.  It wasn’t as effective as in debate no. 1, because Obama was more animated but, in a funny way, it was the most insulting thing Romney could have done.  (And we’ll get back to insults in a minute.)

In the first debate, Romney focused on introducing himself to the American people, not as the Frankenstein Capitalist the Obama media and Obama himself created, but as an intelligent, thoughtful, humane individual.  Romney achieved that goal and then some.  In this second debate, though, Romney wanted to show the American people that he is presidential.  He talked to them about broad policy concerns, and treated Obama like a buzzing fly.  Romney swatted at Obama occasionally, but otherwise focused on having a dialogue with the voters.

I would have liked to have seen Romney challenge Obama more directly on some of his lies (and there were a lot of lies), but Romney’s approach was, as I said, peculiarly insulting on its own terms.  He essentially said Obama is so irrelevant he can be ignored.

Fascinating aspect No. 3:  Obama was unbelievably nasty and condescending.  The true believers were elated by his “wit,” but I wonder if the undecideds didn’t find it unpresidential.  This was not a frat party or even an Alfred E. Smith dinner roast.  This was a serious presidential debate.  Unloading the equivalent of “Yoo hoo, old fart, the 80s are calling,” was not statesmanlike, and Romney was wise to look at the camera (i.e., the voters) and ignore it.

The nastiest statement, of course, was Obama’s response when Romney made a lengthy argument about the problems with our depleted military.  Romney talked about the fact that the military can no longer fight a war on two fronts and about the Navy’s concerns that the Navy has too few ships.  With regard to that last, Romney noted in passing that we have fewer ships than we’ve had since 1917.  Obama ignored the overarching argument entirely (Obama’s policies are weakening our military during dangerous times for America), and got terribly excited about the whole 1917 (or, as Obama said, 1916) bit:

You mentioned the Navy, for example, and that we have fewer ships than we did in 1916. Well, Governor, we also have fewer horses and bayonets, because the nature of our military’s changed. We have these things called aircraft carriers, where planes land on them. We have these ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines.

Ouch!  In 7th grade, that would have been a great riposte.  At a presidential debate, not so much.  None of us  one likes someone who is condescending and arrogant, and that’s true whether the insult is directed at us or at someone else.  More than that, by making such a definitive statement about today’s military, Obama left himself wide open to corrections.  And it’s easy to correct his gross errors.  Yes, in 1917, the military mostly had battleships and now has aircraft carriers, but it also requires a host of supporting ships, from amphibious assault vessels to destroyers to supply ships, etc.  And as everyone except the president knows as of this morning, we use horses in Afghanistan and the military still trains with bayonets for close combat.

There is a difference between being witty and being nasty.  When I was 13, I didn’t know the difference and I wasn’t much liked.  Now, I’ve figured it out, and people enjoy my company.  Obama wasn’t witty, he was nasty, and that’s the one thing he couldn’t afford in this election.  After all, Obama’s never had anything to run on but his likability.  In 2008, he needed to be liked because he had no record; in 2012, he needs to be liked because he has a big record.

UPDATE: A friend sent me a link to an article from last year discussing the way in which bayonets continue to be useful in battle situations. My dad used bayonets at El Alamein (or maybe somewhere in Crete — I’m not quite sure), and he considered them his friends in battle.

Random thoughts

If this election was a romance novel, Barack Obama would be the bad boy who promises that, if you just let him have his way with you, you won’t get pregnant (honest!).  He then tells you that his friend Eddie will pay for your birth control.  Eddie doesn’t follow through, but Barry’s persuasive.  After Bad Barry has abandoned you and your baby, the manly, square-jawed Mitt comes along and helps you straighten your life out.  You fall in love with him and elect him president.

Have you ever noticed that Obama clips off the end of his words, as if he regrets having given them to you.  That’s why I don’t hear a great orator; I hear a guy with a poker up his . . . orifice.

If the October surprise is that Obama’s having talks with Iran, I don’t think that’s a good thing (“keep him in the White House so that the channels of communication open”), I think it’s a dreadful thing.  It’s scary thinking of what Obama will give away in such talks.

Romney had better find his inner aggressive guy tonight during the debate.  In the wake of the Benghazi debacle, Obama needs to be pushed against the wall, and Bob Schieffer won’t do it.  I fear, though, that Romney will sound more than usually tongue-tied, since foreign policy is something he knows in his head, but doesn’t feel in his gut.  I’m definitely a bit worried about tonight.  If Obama tells the truth, he’ll be in trouble, so he’ll lie — and I just hope Romney can handle that.


Found it on Facebook — Iran, the greatest threat to Western civilization

Sometimes my liberal friends surprise me.  Buried amongst the snarky, ill-informed pictures they routinely post, I’ll occasionally find something thoughtful and important.  Very, very important — such as this short video explaining precisely why Iran poses such a threat, not just within the Middle East, but to the whole world, America included:

The question for voters is whether they want to give Obama another four years to futz around while the Mullahs build their nuclear bombs and delivery systems (because futz is all he did during the first four years while the Mullahs powered forward) or if they want to hand the problem to an Alpha dog. Romney is not insanely aggressive (he’s no mad dog or cowboy) but, more importantly, he’s not in thrall to a deranged Leftist belief that, if we just make nice to Mullahs who believe that must take an active hand in bringing around the apocalypse, those same mullahs will also make nice and just go away.

Nor am I comfortable with Joe Biden’s assurance that, “Well, sure they have the bomb, but they can’t do anything with it.”  Biden doesn’t know his derriere from a ditch, and he has proven over the years to be remarkably wrong when it comes to national security issues.  The mere fact that he’s not worried frightens me as much as anything else could.

(The sad thing is that I’m pretty sure that the liberal friend who posted this video firmly believes that, despite the evidence of his first four years in office, Obama is the only one to save the world.)

There’s a website that goes with this video.  It offers prizes for those who make the effort to email the video to as many friends as possible.  Sending a few emails strikes me as a small price to pay for a worthy cause.

Romney knocks ‘em dead at the Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation dinner

If you’ve been hearing good buzz about Romney’s performance at the Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation dinner, that’s because he did a stellar job.  Here is his star turn:

Obama wasn’t bad either. I just don’t like him, which makes it harder for me to laugh at his jokes:

Found it on Facebook — misconstruing Mitt’s correct statement about marriage and gun violence

Here’s today’s Facebook find:

This poster, of course, comes from a liberal.  What the liberal doesn’t realize is that Mitt was riffing right off the liberals’ own beloved New York Times when he said that the best way to deal with gun violence is to promote marriage.  Just this July, the Times ran an article acknowledging what conservatives have known intuitively, which is that two-parent families are much less likely to live in poverty than one-parent families:

The economic storms of recent years have raised concerns about growing inequality and questions about a core national faith, that even Americans of humble backgrounds have a good chance of getting ahead. Most of the discussion has focused on labor market forces like falling blue-collar wages and lavish Wall Street pay.

But striking changes in family structure have also broadened income gaps and posed new barriers to upward mobility. College-educated Americans like the Faulkners are increasingly likely to marry one another, compounding their growing advantages in pay. Less-educated women like Ms. Schairer, who left college without finishing her degree, are growing less likely to marry at all, raising children on pinched paychecks that come in ones, not twos.

Estimates vary widely, but scholars have said that changes in marriage patterns — as opposed to changes in individual earnings — may account for as much as 40 percent of the growth in certain measures of inequality. Long a nation of economic extremes, the United States is also becoming a society of family haves and family have-nots, with marriage and its rewards evermore confined to the fortunate classes.

The next analytical step is to recognize that there is a strong correlation between poverty and crime.  Even Barack Obama acknowledged this in an ugly, back assward way when he said that “I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but rich people are all for nonviolence. Why wouldn’t they be? They’ve got what they want. They want to make sure people don’t take their stuff.”  The corollary to Obama’s class warfare statement is that rich people don’t take other people’s stuff either — they buy it.

So a root cause of crime is poverty and, as the New York Times admits, a root cause of poverty is single mother parenting.  That means that Mitt didn’t say something stupid; he said something smart.  Only people in deep, deep denial would deny the wisdom of his statement that we deal with violence, not by getting rid of the Second Amendment, which is our bulwark against government tyranny, but by reaffirming traditional middle class values.

While I’m on the topic of marriage, poverty, and crime, I’ll just throw one more thing into the mix:  Daddies.  Studies show that Daddies matter when it comes to boys and crime (and boys commit vastly greater numbers of crimes than girls do).  Interestingly, it’s not clear that this Daddy statistic applies as well to two Daddy families.  Still, two Daddy (and two Mommy) families are still going to be economically more stable than a single parent family, and the single parent trap is what I believe Mitt was addressing.

Facebook is just a wellspring of clever misinformation aimed at credulous, emotionally charged liberals.

Found it on Facebook — crude anti-Mormon sentiment

I continue to be fascinated with the things that my Progressive friends post on Facebook.  I feel like a cultural archaeologist.  Here’s today’s offering:

For once, my commentary can be summed up in a single sentence:

We reject all efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others. — Barack Obama, September 12, 2012


More thoughts on the second presidential debate, including why Romney won a tie

Romney’s main problem is a chronic one.  While he intuitively understands what Bush Sr. used to call “the vision thing,” he can’t articulate it. He’ll spell out all the details, but he’s incapable of explaining to Americans that, if the government takes all their money, not only does it mean they don’t have it, it means the marketplace doesn’t have it.  What’s worse, Obama’s administration has provided perfect evidence that, once the government has all the money, it spends it badly, making dumb choices and pandering to special interests. With that simplistic explanation, Romney’s wonkery would have made more sense.  As it was, since I was watching on CNN which had a little chart showing real-time responses from some men and women, I could see that every time Romney got too into details, people lost interest.  (I actually found the chart irritating.  It was like watching a monitor in the ICU, breathlessly fearing that the monitor might show a flatline.)

The other problem, of course, was that Romney was in a two-against-one fight. He was game, but it was hard for him to land his punches when one attacker was off limits (for appearances sake, he couldn’t attack Crowley), while the other attacker was spouting lies left and right — and then being covered by the off-limits gal. Even if Romney had been more articulate, this was an almost impossible scenario. Gingrich might have handled it, but I’m not sure….

Michael Filozof noticed something important that I missed completely:

In all the analysis and spin in the media about Tuesday night’s debate, one item seems to have escaped scrutiny— but it struck me at the moment that Obama said it as a statement of such remarkable arrogance and hubris that I had to check the transcript today to make sure he’d actually said what I’d heard.

He did.

When queried about the lack of security at the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that resulted in the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans, Obama responded:

“Well, let me first of all talk about our diplomats, because they serve all around the world and do an incredible job in a very dangerous situation.”

“Our” diplomats. That’s the perfunctory throwaway line. What followed was truly astonishing:

“And these aren’t just representatives of the United States, they are my representatives. I send them there, oftentimes into harm’s way.”

Whoa! Wait a second! “These aren’t ‘just’ representatives of the United States?”


“They are my representatives. I send them there” – as if that’s the more important, bigger deal? America’s Ambassadors represent the country – not the man. Article II of the Constitution says that the President “by and with” — with, mind you! — “the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors…”

Filozof goes on to analyze just how bad Obama’s unconscious arrogance really was.

Yuval Levin also put his finger on something that was bothering me about the “undecided voters’” questions.  Almost without exception, the questions assumed a liberal world view.  They assumed that women get paid $0.72 on the dollar, which is true only because women like their children and, if they can, try to do part-time or flex-time jobs that pay less.  Romney sort of alluded to that flex-time principle but, as I noted above, he’s a details guy who gets, but can’t articulate, the big picture.

The questions assumed that illegal immigrants should get to stay here.  Romney, bless his heart, tried not to pander on this one.  He almost sounded hard-line about having a meaningful border (although, again, he couldn’t explain why sovereignty matters).  Interestingly, the tougher he talked, the higher that little graph ticked up.  It’s easy to like illegal immigrants in flush times; in lean times, they’re competitors for jobs.

One of the questions assumed that guns are bad.  Romney, after a little struggle with that one, based upon anti-assault weapon legislation he signed while governor, managed to focus on people, not guns, causing crime.  Obama focused on guns, and then remembered that there are people holding those weapons.

As for the Benghazi question, I actually assumed that Crowley wrote that question, since it was clearly intended as an opening for Obama to man up and take responsibility after letting Hillary fall on her sword (after first softening the blow by blaming her security experts).  Of course, Obama blew that opportunity by lying, turning what should have been a manly confession into an embarrassing (for him and Crowley) confrontation.

But Levin has a different theory about those questions:

When the debate commission announced that this year’s town-hall debate—in which questioners would be selected from among undecided voters in the surrounding region—would be held in Long Island, N.Y., rather than in a swing state, it raised a few eyebrows. Undecided voters in Nassau County generally aren’t like undecided voters in Ohio or Virginia. They tend to be people who start from a liberal foundation but may be a little too populist to be comfortably Democratic voters these days, and so in some respects a kind of mirror image of what we normally think of as swing voters. The questions in Tuesday night’s town-hall debate certainly reflected that character. These were, on the whole, questions from disappointed Democrats. That didn’t necessarily advantage one candidate over the other: It meant some of the subjects taken up in the debate heavily favored Obama but it also meant that the tone of the questioners was almost uniformly disappointed with Obama, which is probably the most dangerous of all attitudes for the incumbent president.


Many of the questions were about the sorts of things liberals would want debates to be about. Given a chance to address the presidential candidates, would many swing voters in the battleground states in this election ask about pay equity (and ground their question in false liberal talking points on the subject)? Are they concerned about gun control? Do they think about immigration the way the debate questioner on that subject did? No. Yet at the same time many of the questioners approached Obama with an underlying sense of disappointment, and seemed to look at Romney with an eye to whether he might be a less disappointing president. I suspect this combination made this debate less interesting to undecided voters in undecided states, but that on the whole it helped Romney a bit more than Obama. Disappointment with the incumbent combined with a sense that the challenger is a reasonably plausible president is how you unseat a president, and tonight’s debate enabled Romney to advance both elements a bit even though Obama was much stronger than he was in Denver two weeks ago.

Standing on its own, the debate was probably a tie.  Obama proved he has a pulse, and Romney did okay.  That means Romney won.  As William McGurn pointed out yesterday, the only thing Obama had going into office was charisma.  He exploded that aura in his first debate, and could only have won by regaining his mystique in the second debate.  But Obama didn’t revisit the magic.  His pinched, high-pitched delivery, his vicious personal attacks on Romney, and his complete inability to state a vision or purpose for his second term (everything he said was a rehash of his first-term “vision thing”), established conclusively that “what’s done cannot be undone.”  Once you destroy something as precious and intangible as charm (and I’ll concede for this argument that Obama’s fans found him charming), you stand before the world unmasked and unarmed.

Barring massive fraud, I now believe Romney will win.  And if you’re reading this in Missouri, vote for Todd Akin.  He may have some wacky ideas, but he’s still better than Claire McCaskill and Romney needs to own the Senate to undo Obama’s and the Democrats’ first two years of damage.

UPDATE:  Just want to throw in that Wolf Howling, whose opinion I greatly respect, thinks Romney won.  And Bruce Kesler points out the most important thing, which is that voters, the ultimate critics, side with Romney on the economy and other things about which they (not the media) really care.

A Crowley set-up on Libya?

There is something about how the Libya question was raised in last night’s debate that smelled awfully like Chicago, yesterday.

When Pres. Obama raised his objections to Romney’s challenge on Libya with Candy Crowley, he appeared to imply that Crowley had already read the transcript of the Rose Garden speech that Obama gave immediately after the Benghazi attack. Crowley indicated that she had. So, how would Crowley happened to have read and “memorized” that particular Rose Garden transcript in advance of the Town Hall debate unless she had been prepared in advance for a) the question and b) for Obama’s response? It is also interesting how she scrambled to steer the discussion away from Libya the moment that Romney began to drill down on this headline issue. I believe that this exchange was totally set-up.

Here is the outtake video on the exchange. What do you think?;contentBody

Found it on Facebook: Romney is evil? Really?

One of my old high school classmates, who is gay and Progressive, posted a heartfelt plea today that all of his Facebook friends do whatever is necessary to keep the “evil” Romney out of office.  Evil?  That’s an awfully strong word.  Hitler was evil.  Mao was evil.  Stalin was evil.  Pol Pot was evil.  Saddam Hussein was evil.

But what the heck has Romney ever said or done to earn the appellation evil?  I meant to ask my friend, but my computer is dying and for reasons entirely unclear to me, it will no longer let me post any comments to Facebook.  I’ll have a new computer by next week and, if I remember, I’ll politely ask this guy why Romney is “evil” as opposed to merely being a mainstream politician and member of Lincoln’s party, whose mainstream politics somehow offend this guy.

I’m actually being a bit disingenuous here.  I’ve known for decades that Conservatives think Progressives are misguided; while Progressives think Conservatives are evil.  It’s just that I don’t remember this level of hysteria from before.  People disagreed, but the passion that characterizes the “Leave Britney alone!” video wasn’t as obvious, and the insults weren’t so blatant.

Will Obama’s failure to create genuine wealth finally end Keynesian economics?

Many of Obama’s most educated supporters believe in him because they believe in Keynesian economics.  Central to that belief is the theory that government itself can be an economic engine.  If people aren’t working, have them work for the government or at least have the government fund their ostensibly “private sector” jobs.  This theory holds that all jobs are good jobs, regardless of the employer.  Indeed, ardent Keynesians say the government is both the best employer and economic manager, because it’s big enough to control the entire economy, getting money and jobs where they most need to be.

I turned my back on Keynesian theories when I finally figured out that there’s a difference between jobs and wealth.  As Milton Friedman famously said, if all that you’re interested in is employment, forget shovel-ready jobs and aim, instead, for spoon-ready jobs, which will put more people to work.  At the end of the day, whether you have ten people with digging away with shovels or one hundred people picking away with spoons, all you’ll end up with are holes.  Under this model, any benefits from fuller employment are transitory.

What creates meaningful jobs, the kind that move the economy forward instead of create a static back-and-forth of taxes to the government and make-work to the people, is a dynamic private sector.  That’s where you get innovation, imagination, and energy.  Under this free-market economic model, the government’s job is to prevent abuse.  It steps aside to allow the greed that’s necessary for capitalism, while acting affirmatively to prevent fraud, abuse, and other kinds of things that interfere with the marketplace.

During the debate, Romney was referring to this policing role when he said some regulation is not only good, but actually necessary.  It’s when the government starts managing the economy that wealth vanishes.

If you have a rich country (or, as was the case with Europe when America paid for her Cold War security, a sugar daddy), you can keep the back-and-forth of taxes and government make-work going for quite a long time.  Eventually, though, you’re left with jobs, but no wealth.  And no wealth means no taxes, which means no jobs.  Welcome to Greece.

What Romney has to do during the next month is convince undecided voters, or worried voters who aren’t as decided as they thought they were, that, while, Obama’s policies can and will create jobs (as today’s anemic, and suspect, job reports revealed), his policies not only cannot create wealth, they are antithetical to wealth creation.  I think this ad is a good start:

The Smirk

The GOP instantly produced a video focusing on Obama’s face during the debate.  It’s called “The Smirk.”  I don’t know.  To me, it looks as if Obama’s trying not to cry.

I’m watching the debate now, and I would characterize it as a bloodless, but total, massacre. Obama wearily pretends the last four years never happened, while Romney cheerfully goes for the rhetorical jugular. I’m impressed that Romney doesn’t appear mean, he appears impassioned. He cares about America.

As for Obama, all he seems to care about is having the debate end. We all know that feeling. The game starts, you realize instantly that you’re seriously over-matched, but you can’t just walk off the field. So what you do instead is go through the motions, waiting for the final whistle to blow.  Ace has a picture showing who really cared.

I will not be foolish enough to say that the election is over. Sarah Palin has rightly warned that, in past elections, when he couldn’t win clean, Obama won dirty. Nevertheless, Romney, given the chance to meet the voters face to face, finally broke free of the media narrative. From here on out, voters will pay direct attention to Romney, which is what he needed.

Incidentally, all of my liberal Facebook friends, the ones who were posting endless Obama campaign posters, did one of two things last night: they suddenly fell silent or they announced that this whole election campaign is so boring, they just wish it was over. Kind of like Obama….

How to tell when Obama’s about to lie during the upcoming presidential debates

There’s an old joke:  “How can you tell when a politician is lying?  His lips are moving.”

During this presidential campaign season, that joke is almost accurate when it comes to Obama.  It’s not 100% accurate, though, because he does say occasionally things that are true.  For example, when he showed up on The View, he said he was just there as “eye candy.”  That was the truth, because he really should have been dealing with the murder of American citizens and the attacks on American embassies on the anniversary of 9/11.  Anything else was a purely decorative exercise.

Since Obama doesn’t lie 100% of the time, it helps to know when he’s leading up to, or is actually in the act of, lying.  Sometimes we know this because we know the facts better than he assumes we do.  But on arcane matters, you just have to look for the Obama “poker tells.”  Hugh Hewitt explains.

As for me, I’m looking forward to the debates.  In 2008, Obama had no record and he faced off against a deferential opponent who, whatever other virtues he had, was an appalling bad debater.  This time, Obama has a long record to defend, and his opponent is smarter than he is, more educated than he is, more knowledgeable than he is, and has been burnished in a painful and bruising primary season.  In other words, for those of us who don’t like Obama, if Romney is willing to show some intestinal fortitude, this should be fun.

The Romney tax returns and other financial information

Well, Romney nicely pulled the rug out from under the Progressives/Democrats when he released all of his tax information.  This is a relief to me, because I was getting sick and tired of seeing my liberal Facebook friends repeat ad nauseum nasty statements about those missing (per Harry Reid, “unpaid”) taxes.  Turns out that, not only did Romney pay taxes, he paid lots and lots of taxes.  His effective rate was more than 20%, and that doesn’t even take into account the fact that all of these dollars were capital gains, meaning that they’d already run through the government tax mill once.  In addition, he gave almost 30% of his money to charity.

Harry Reid slipped further into dementia by denying that any of this was possible:  “He’s hiding something. He’s hiding something! It is so evident he’s hiding something!”

I’d like to say to Reid, “Stay classy, Harry,” but it’s unkind to issue instructions like that to crazy people.

Now that Romney’s financial information is out there, I know that my Facebook friends are going to start criticizing what’s in the documents.  Thankfully, Yid with Lid prepared a handy-dandy list about the information.  Chock-full-o facts, including facts about Obama, Reid, Biden, Pelosi, and Debbie Whatser-her-name-shmatta, it will give me all the snappy come-backs I need to reorient those silly people away from the dark side and back to the real world.