The Rich Get Richer: Obama-Style Crony Capitalism

Photo Credit: Brendan SmialowskiFor most Americans, Friday was not a very good day. Sequestration kicked in amid a drumbeat of reports about the pocketbook hits that we would take and the illegal immigrants released because of the cuts, the Commerce Department announced that personal income took its biggest hit in 20 years, and the Performance of Manufacturing Index reported a drop. Oh, and earlier in the week, fourth-quarter GDP growth was revised to a paltry 0.1 percent. Unemployment has remained up, the ranks of the poor have swelled, existing small businesses are staggering, and few new ones are being created.

But, for the privileged few at the high-end of President Obama’s coalition, things look far less bleak. The stock market yawned at sequestration and then rose. The S&P is near a five-year high and is up by 10 percent over the past 12 months.

How concerned is Obama by the bad news and the sequester cuts that on Friday he termed “dumb,” “unnecessary,” “arbitrary,” and “inexcusable”? Not very, one would think, since his own 2012 budget forecast projected the very cuts in discretionary spending that the president now abjures, and described them in glowing terms. As Columbia’s Jeffrey Sachs recently pointed out. “the level of spending for fiscal year 2013 under the sequestration will be nearly the same as Mr. Obama called for in the draft budget presented in mid-2012.” Indeed, the White House budget forecast boasted that it would “bring domestic discretionary spending to its lowest level as a share of the economy since the Eisenhower administration.”

For some reason, none of this feels like government by or for the people, and it isn’t. Rather, it seems as though “crony capitalism” is the watchword for this administration. Strip away Obama’s showmanship and scolding, and the president has done just fine in protecting the interests of the top 1 percent, especially among those who were his contributors and the right kind of 1 percenters.

Take green energy, the holy grail of the high end of the president’s base. Solyndra, the now-bankrupt manufacturer of solar panels, received more than half a billion dollars in government-guaranteed loans. One of the company’s key backers was billionaire George Kaiser, a 2008 Obama fundraiser—small world.

Read more from this story HERE.

President Obama’s Sequester Strategy: Divide And Conquer

Photo Credit: APPresident Barack Obama broke Republicans once on taxes — and his risky strategy for winning the sequester fight assumes he’ll do it again.

He will divide, isolate and defeat Republicans using all the powers of his office and all his skills as a political campaigner. As Americans grow frustrated with the cuts, Republicans will reject their party’s no-tax mantra and demand that Congress end the standoff, even if it means raising some new revenue – just the way Obama is demanding.

Obama’s trying to speed this result, by releasing state by state details of the pain and suffering the sequester will cause, all meant to get Republicans to cave. And he’s got the biggest megaphone, hammering this message over and over in a way the divided Republican party cannot.

Except that message could cut both ways. What if the public agrees that yes, there is a lot of pain and suffering – and turns to Obama wondering, why didn’t you do more to prevent it? That’s what makes some Democrats nervous about the White House’s supreme level of confidence.

Democratic lawmakers, who are unclear about the end game, could succumb to the same public offensive that Obama has been ginning up against Republicans and start demanding that the White House cut its losses and move on to other important second-term initiatives. A GOP proposal to give flexibility to the agency heads on deciding how to administer the cuts could start looking attractive to Democrats as a way out.

Read more from this story HERE.

Obama Threatening Veterans’ Gun Rights

In an apparent threat to Second Amendment rights, some American military veterans have received a letter from the Veterans Administration warning that their competency to handle their own affairs is under review, and if determined by government bureaucrats to be “incompetent,” they would be barred from possessing weapons.

The issue is being raised by the United States Justice Foundation, which defends civil and religious rights.

In a statement on the organization’s website, Executive Director Michael Connelly said his organization is pursuing a Freedom of Information Act demand to the Department of Veterans Affairs to “force them to disclose the criteria they are using to place veterans on the background check list that keeps them from exercising their Second Amendment rights.”

“Then we will take whatever legal steps are necessary to protect our American warriors,” he wrote. He said he’s been approached by a significant number of veterans who have received letters from the VA.

An image of a letter dated Dec. 20, 2012, has been posted online at Red Flag News. The letter states that the Department of Veterans Affairs has “received” information about the veteran that “because of your disabilities you may need help in handling your Department of Affairs (VA) benefits.”

Read more from this story HERE.

Obama, The Puppet Master, Weaves his Tales with the Mastery of Technology

Photo Credit: Pete SouzaPresident Barack Obama is a master at limiting, shaping and manipulating media coverage of himself and his White House.

Not for the reason that conservatives suspect: namely, that a liberal press willingly and eagerly allows itself to get manipulated.

Instead, the mastery mostly flows from a White House that has taken old tricks for shaping coverage (staged leaks, friendly interviews) and put them on steroids using new ones (social media, content creation, precision targeting). And it’s an equal opportunity strategy: Media across the ideological spectrum are left scrambling for access.

The results are transformational. With more technology, and fewer resources at many media companies, the balance of power between the White House and press has tipped unmistakably toward the government. This is an arguably dangerous development, and one that the Obama White House — fluent in digital media and no fan of the mainstream press — has exploited cleverly and ruthlessly. And future presidents from both parties will undoubtedly copy and expand on this approach.

“The balance of power used to be much more in favor of the mainstream press,” said Mike McCurry, who was press secretary to President Bill Clinton during the Monica Lewinsky scandal. Nowadays, he said, “The White House gets away with stuff I would never have dreamed of doing. When I talk to White House reporters now, they say it’s really tough to do business with people who don’t see the need to be cooperative.”

McCurry and his colleagues in the Clinton White House were hardly above putting their boss in front of gentle questions: Clinton and Vice President Al Gore often preferred the safety of “Larry King Live” to the rhetorical combat of the briefing room. But Obama and his aides have raised it to an art form: The president has shut down interviews with many of the White House reporters who know the most and ask the toughest questions. Instead, he spends way more time talking directly to voters via friendly shows and media personalities. Why bother with The New York Times beat reporter when Obama can go on “The View”?

Read more from this story HERE.

Israeli TV: Decision by Netanyahu, Barak to strike Iran is almost final

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak have “almost finally” decided on an Israeli strike at Iran’s nuclear facilities this fall, and a final decision will be taken “soon,” Israel’s main TV news broadcast reported on Friday evening.

Channel 2 News, the country’s leading news program, devoted much of its Friday night broadcast to the issue, detailing the pros and cons that, it said, have taken Netanyahu and Barak to the brink of approving an Israeli military attack despite opposition from the Obama administration and from many Israeli security chiefs.

Critically, the station’s diplomatic correspondent Udi Segal said, Israel does not believe that the US will take military action as Iran closes in on the bomb.

The US, the TV report said, has not provided Israel with details of an attack plan. President Obama has not promised to attack Iran if all else fails. Conditions cited by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta for an American attack do not calm Israeli concerns. And Obama has a record of seeking UN and Arab League approval before action. All these factors, in Jerusalem’s mind, underline the growing conviction of Netanyahu and Barak that Israel will have to tackle Iran alone, the TV report said.

Israel’s leaders have also noted that president George W. Bush vowed repeatedly that North Korea would not be allowed to attain a nuclear weapons capability — a vow that proved empty.

Read more from this story HERE.

White House considers circumventing Congress again, leaves Internet takeover through exec. order a possibility

The White House has left open the possibility of enacting its Internet agenda via executive order after the failed effort to bring the Democrat-supported cybersecurity bill to a full vote in the Senate last week.

In response to a question from The Hill, a Washington, D.C. political newspaper, about whether President Obama was considering advancing his party’s cyber-plan through an executive order, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney didn’t rule out the possibility.

“In the wake of Congressional inaction and Republican stall tactics, unfortunately, we will continue to be hamstrung by outdated and inadequate statutory authorities that the legislation would have fixed,” he said via email.

“Moving forward, the President is determined to do absolutely everything we can to better protect our nation against today’s cyber threats and we will do that,” added Carney.

The failed cyber security bill, which could be revived by Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid when the Senate comes back from recess in September, would have given federal agencies in charge of regulating critical infrastructure industries like power companies and utilities the ability to mandate cybersecurity recommendations.

Read more from this story HERE.


The Irony of Celebrating a Pro-Abortion President’s Birthday

On Saturday, the President of the United States, who has spent the past four years dividing Americans rather than uniting, celebrates his 51st birthday. He will be lavished with all kinds of praise by the sycophants known as mainstream media.

Undoubtedly, groups like the NAACP, the ACLU, GLAAD, OWS and the failed Democrat party will laud him with undeserved accolades, but it’s fitting in their surreal universe. Anyone who can be given a Nobel Peace Prize without any record of actually brokering peace can certainly be praised for a myriad of mythological achievements from devoted surrogates.

Happy Birthday, Obama. Now get out:

This weekend in the battleground state of Florida, a completely original and unconventional TV ad, leading people to, will take to the airwaves and ride the digital spectrum to voters’ homes. Thanks to my tea-partying friends at Patriot Super PAC, who understand our Constitutional rights are under relentless assault, this is my birthday wish to the President (created for my

I am absolutely ashamed of the U.S. media establishment’s willing role as Obama’s personal public relations firm instead of the public watchdog for Americans who deserve journalistic objectivity. Poverty is at its highest level since the mid 1960s.

But it’s not Obama’s fault. Unemployment just inched up to 8.3% for this past month and continues to be much higher now among black Americans than it ever was under George W. Bush. But it’s not Obama’s fault. Remember all of those mortgages that Hope and Change was going to pay? We have a massive epidemic of foreclosures across the nation, but it’s not Obama’s fault. Public schools, like the one he spoke at recently here in Virginia, are failing our children. Green Run High School, according to the VA Department of Education has failed to meet required levels of achievements for the last three years and is labeled as “Not In Improvement”.

Read more from this story HERE.

Explosive: New photos of Auschwitz-like hospital that General tried to hide for Obama

An explosive Congressional investigation revealed horrific new details this week about a U.S. funded military hospital in Afghanistan that kept patients in “Auschwitz-like” conditions.

The investigation also revealed that Lt. General William B. Caldwell, then commander of the $11.2 billion dollar a year Afghan training program, tried to block the probe and ordered a cover-up.

Lt. General William Caldwell & Pelosi
Photo credit: Nancy Pelosi

There are currently two ongoing investigations looking into the Dawood Military Hospital abuses: one centered around the Military Whistleblower Protection Act, the other concerned with Caldwell’s politically-motivated decision to delay investigations into the hospital until after the 2010 elections.

What follows is a very disturbing look inside the Dawood National Military Hospital. It was compiled with sworn eye-witness testimony from the three U.S. Army colonels who blew the whistle on the scandal, as well as never-before published photos obtained by BuzzFeed.

The photos and corresponding descriptions were collected by U.S. military personnel in Afghanistan.

Read more from this story and see the shocking photos HERE.

Sen. Sessions: $25.4 trillion debt over next decade, proof Obama’s campaign is lying

Photo credit: DonkeyHotey

The White House has delivered its 10-year budget forecast to Congress, and it predicts a trillion-dollar deficit for fiscal year 2012.

The project, titled the Mid-Session Review, projects $42.6 trillion in spending, and will balloon the federal government’s accumulated debt to $25.4 trillion by 2022, according to an analysis from the office of Sen. Jeff Sessions, the GOP’s budget chief in the Senate. The review was released Friday, reducing the chance it will get much coverage in the media.

Last year, the national debt grew to $14.8 trillion, an increase of $5 trillion from 2008.

The river of red ink shows that President Barack Obama’s campaign-trail ads are “dramatically false,” said a statement from Sessions.

Those new ads promise to pay down the accumulated deficits in a “balanced way.”

Read more from this story HERE.

US Catholic bishop conference helped fund Alinsky training for young Barack Obama

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ “Campaign for Human Development” paid a young Barack Obama’s airfaire to a training program on community organizing given by the Industrial Areas Foundation, an organization founded by leftist radical Saul Alinsky, according a book to be released tomorrow on the subject.

No Higher Power, by conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly and journalist George Neumayr, reports that “In the 1980s, the Catholic archdiocese of Chicago contributed to the training of Obama in the very Alinskyite radicalism that would culminate in such anti-religious measures as the HHS mandate,” according to an article on the book published by the Blaze.

“In fact, in the course of writing this book, we met a source who once had access to copies of documents from the archives of the Chicago archdiocese. This source supplied us with never-before-published copies of invoices, checks, and letters that confirm the Church’s support for the man who would one day seek to destroy its religious freedom,” they add.

The documents, which have been published on the Blaze’s website and are displayed below, purportedly show correspondence between Obama, writing as a member of the Calumet Community Religious Conference, and the US bishops’ Campaign for Human Development, which is today known as the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD)

The letter purported to be from Obama is for the purpose of submitting proof of his “requisition order for the ticket purchased for my trip to the IAF Training in Los Angeles, ” and is dated May 20, 1986. A copy of what appears to be the ticket or the requisition order for the ticket is included.

Read more from this story HERE.

Photo credit: BoingBoing