The “Gang of Six” Deal is the Antithesis of Reform

The media frenzy over Republican Senators and Barack Obama making nice over the debt ceiling crisis exposes for all Americans to see the extent to which both parties are aligned with Wall Street interests, and against the interests of Main Street and small business. The subject of this latest bipartisan love fest is the Gang of Six plan.

Americans want reform. The Republican majority in the House of Representatives was swept into office by promising reform. The Gang of Six solution is the antithesis of reform.

Supposedly it offers the “balanced approach” of which Obama rambles on about endlessly. But in reality, the Gang of Six is one-sided. It offers only vague language about spending cuts. At best the Gang of Six plan might cut $500 billion, and even these cuts cannot be guaranteed. In real terms, government would continue to grow.

Also the Gang of Six solution would dramatically increase taxes. It calls upon the Senate Finance Committee to craft a tax reform plan that would actually increase taxes by $2.3 trillion over a 10 year period. Some members even cynically call it a tax reduction by using a baseline that everyone knows is phony. This is a baseline that predicts all of the middle class tax cuts signed into law by President Bush was repealed.

All of this because rejecting the debt ceiling increase would require the U.S. government to right size itself and begin a pay as you go diet.

Read More at Floyd Reports by Floyd and Mary Beth Brown, Floyd Reports

MSNBC Distorts Reagan Position on Debt Ceiling, Says Media Watchdog Group

Cable network MSNBC has been distorting the late President Ronald Reagan’s position on raising the debt ceiling, in the midst of a current-day political debate over raising that ceiling between President Barack Obama and Republicans on Capitol Hill, says an analysis by the Media Research Center (MRC).

“At least five MSNBC anchors since Tuesday have promoted a cherry-picked House Democratic Caucus video that distorts President Ronald Reagan’s position on the debt ceiling, inaccurately asserting that President Barack Obama is more in line with Reagan than the Republicans,” MRC News Analyst Alex Fitzsimmons reported in a BiasAlert on Wednesday.

The five MSNBC anchors are Chris Matthews, Al Sharpton, Rachel Maddow, Lawrence O’Donnell and Thomas Roberts. They each played or cited an excerpt from a Reagan speech given on Sept. 26, 1987. In the excerpt, Reagan expressed the need to raise the debt ceiling.

However, the cable network did not acknowledge that later in that same speech Reagan insisted on a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution.

MRC President L. Brent Bozell III expressed outrage at the network on Thursday.

Read More at CNS News by Fred Lucas, CNSNews

C.S. Lewis vs. Barack Obama on Economics and Government

As Americans prepared to mark the birth of their country with the usual outpouring of celebratory events, pundits on the political right were scratching their heads over President Obama’s most recent comment about America’s free-enterprise system.

This time, corporate jet owners got the hit, no fewer than six times during Obama’s late June press conference, apparently for taking advantage of Bush administration tax breaks at the cost of “your child’s safety.” Such financial obscenities were matched by continued tax breaks for “millionaires and billionaires,” whose wealth the political Left covets and whose sheer selfishness, in their view, has driven a stake through the heart of the president’s vaunted recovery summer. All the while unemployment rates remain stubbornly high, large and small businesses refuse to take their plunge into the world created by Obamacus Economicus, Americans by large majorities believe the country is going “in the wrong direction,” and administration officials remain puzzled by it all. The question is how to explain all this.

Two observers, one a 19th-century Frenchmen and the other a 20th-century Englishmen, offered words of wisdom about the consequences of centralizing political control and, we shall argue, the moral relativism that accompanies such a development.

Frenchman Alexis de Tocqueville’s famous warning in Democracy in America about the peculiar type of despotism to which democracies are especially vulnerable included comments about “an immense tutelary power” hovering over a mass of citizens, for whose happiness it “willingly labors, but it chooses to be a sole agent and the only arbiter,” leaving nothing for individual determination. “What remains,” de Tocqueville asked, “but to spare them all the care of thinking and all the trouble of living?” The result is a power that “prevents existence,” that “compresses, enervates, extinguishes, and stupefies a people,” to the point where they can no longer be considered human beings at all.

Or if they can, they have no chests. This designation was made famous by that bête noire of British moral relativists, C. S. Lewis, noted for his writings on Christian apologetics as well as his Narnia series and the space trilogy. Lewis’s The Abolition of Man consists of three lectures he gave during World War II and was not about politics per se, but rather about the perils of assuming that science can dismiss statements of moral sentiments as purely subjective reactions. He noted that dismissing value statements’ objective meaning has the effect of emasculating humanity; that is, ripping out the “spirited element” of personhood—one’s chest—which hosts “indispensable liaison officers between cerebral man and visceral man. It may even be said that it is by this middle element that man is man.”

Read More at Floyd Reports By Marvin J. Folkertsma, Floyd Reports

Angry Tea Party Stirring up GOP Revolt

A significant faction of the tea party movement is prepared to revolt against any GOP deal to raise the debt ceiling – even if it is “revenue neutral” and cuts trillions from federal spending, grass-roots sources tell Newsmax.

For the most part, tea party leaders have coalesced around the “cut, cap, and balance” approach to raising the debt ceiling: Trillions in real spending cuts, a cap on how much federal spending can consume as a percent of GDP, and, ultimately, a balanced budget amendment that would prevent the federal government from running up future deficits.

But the fractious tea party movement actually consists of thousands of loosely affiliated groups. They generally support constitutionally limited government, but don’t always agree on specific policies. And they are by no means united on whether the debt ceiling should be raised at all.

The leaders of at least one major tea party organization, Tea Party Patriots, are adamantly opposed to any deal to raise the debt ceiling, under virtually any circumstances. Doing so, they say, only invites more deficit spending.

Some analysts call such fiscal hawks “debt-ceiling absolutists.” The absolutists say Uncle Sam must go cold turkey and swear off the spending binge that has saddled America with over $14.3 trillion in national debt. But labels aside, their influence within the GOP caucus is substantial.

Read More at Newsmax By David A. Patten, NewsMax

Kincaid: Obama Poised to Win Budget Battle and Slash Defense

Another discussion by liberal talking heads on CNN yesterday depicted House conservatives as fanatical budget-cutters standing in the way of a “deal” on federal spending and debt. But the Cut, Cap, and Balance Bill, which has been portrayed as draconian and fiscally conservative, actually raises the debt ceiling by $2.5 trillion. Nine House Republicans voted against the bill for this and other related reasons.

Coverage of the Cut, Cap, and Balance Act (H.R. 2560) has been extremely misleading. The coverage is reminiscent of how the media portray cuts in the rate of growth of federal spending as actual cuts.

In this case, however, the House Republican leadership went along with the ploy, in order to portray themselves as serious budget cutters. The liberal media were only too willing to oblige, setting up a final showdown in which Obama stands to come out the big winner and make cuts that will undermine our national defense—a constitutional obligation of the federal government.

Indeed, one of the “popular” alternatives, now being touted by some in the liberal media, is a plan by “conservative” Senator Tom Coburn to cut $1 trillion from the U.S. defense budget. His options include cancelling aircraft carriers, “reforming” the Joint Strike Fighter program, delaying production of the Army’s Ground Combat Vehicle, terminating a mobile air defense system, reducing nuclear weapons, and reducing purchases of the V-22 Osprey.

At Commentary magazine, Alana Goodman writes of the Coburn plan that “it’s far more radical than Obama’s own recommendation to slash the defense budget by $400 billion.” She adds, “Military spending is not the reason why we’re in a fiscal crisis. Getting rid of wasteful spending in the defense budget is one thing, but strangling it with cuts will endanger our troops and dangerously diminish America’s standing in the world.”

Read More at GOPUSA  By Cliff Kincaid, GOPUSA

McConnell Prepares to Betray Tea Party, Aid Obama’s Debt Ceiling Power Grab

Even as freshman Congressmen passed the Cut, Cap, and Balance proposal last night, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell quietly planned to sell them out. Insiders report McConnell is going through the motions of voting on the House measure but has invested his energy in cutting a deal with Democrats and give Barack Obama unconstitutional and near-dictatorial powers to raise the debt ceiling.

The Hill newspaper exposed the betrayal:

Publicly, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) have made votes on the Cut, Cap and Balance Act and a balanced-budget amendment their priority this week.

But GOP aides say the leaders are already looking past those votes to a potential deal with Democrats to raise the debt limit before an Aug. 2 deadline and spare Republican lawmakers from a political backlash.

“McConnell is going to let cut, cap and balance have its vote and then immediately move to plan B,” said a GOP aide in reference to the fallback debt plan McConnell is negotiating with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).

McConnell’s “Plan B” would allow Barack Obama to unilaterally raise the debt ceiling in three portions over the next year. Only a supermajority of more than two-thirds of Congressmen could override him.

 Read More at Floyd Reports by Ben Johnson, The White House Watch

Joe Miller agrees to pay legal fees

Joe Miller, who lost a 2010 senate bid against Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski, announced he won’t be appealing a court order requiring that he pay state legal fees incurred in his fight to overturn the election results.

“Given the amount at issue, it simply does not make good financial sense to move forward with the appeal,” Miller said in a statement Thursday. “Pyrrhic victories are not my goal. Accordingly, this court fight ends today.”

After losing to tea party-backed Miller in the Republican primary, Murkowski ran as a write-in candidate in the general election in November.

When Murkowski won by 4.5 percentage points, Miller called on the Division of Elections to review the ballots in accordance to state election law, which says write-in votes must match the name of the candidate. Miller claimed all ballots with misspellings should be thrown out in a recount.

But the state had ruled as long as a voter’s intent was clear on the write-in, then a misspelled ballot could be counted. The Superior Court judge rejected Miller’s lawsuit, and the state’s Supreme Court upheld the decision.

 Read More at CNN by Ashley Killough, CNN

Here is the press release:

Fox Host: Mitt Romney Obviously Not a Christian


Mitt Romney is “not a Christian” and therefore he may not have a good chance of raising big money among Christians if Rick Perry runs for president, “Fox & Friends” co-host Ainsley Earhardt said Sunday.

The discussion on Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s possible run for the White House Sunday morning led Earhardt, Fox News correspondent and weekend co-host of the daily news analysis, to pronounce what many evangelicals and mainstream Christians believe: former Massachusetts Gov. Romney, a Mormon, is “obviously not a Christian.”

The talk turned to Romney, the presumptive frontrunner, when host Dave Briggs said he wasn’t sure if Perry could “get in and raise money with Mitt Romney.” Co-host Clayton Morris replied that many Republican thought he couldn’t. But Earhardt disagreed. “Well the Christian coalition … I think [Rick Perry] can get a lot of money from that base because [of] Romney obviously not being a Christian … Rick Perry, he’s always on talk shows, on Christian talk shows, he has days of prayer in Texas,” she said.

This comes amid efforts of Romney, one of the two Mormon presidential contenders apart from Jon Huntsman, to woo evangelical voters. Both Romney and Huntsman spoke at the last month’s Faith and Freedom Conference in Washington, D.C., in an apparent attempt to show their commitment to key social issues and to conservative voters.

However, many evangelicals say the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Romney’s denomination, is non-Christian. While a June 2011 Pew poll showed that 58 percent of white evangelicals didn’t see a problem in supporting a Mormon candidate, evangelicals are warning the voters to be careful.

Read More at Christian Post By Anugrah Kumar, Christian Post

$6.2 Mil To Train Poor Minorities For “Green Jobs”

The federal agency that’s spending a fortune to bring “environmental justice” to poor and minority communities around the U.S. has just dropped an additional $6.2 million to train low-income residents for “green jobs” in one city alone.

It’s all part of the Obama Administration’s costly crusade to help underserved populations obtain the same degree of protection from health and environmental hazards as their wealthy counterparts. Here’s how it works; the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) gives money to leftwing groups—including some dedicated to helping illegal immigrants—that teach black, Latino and indigenous folks how to recycle, reduce carbon emissions through “weatherization” and participate in “green jobs” training.

In the last few months alone the EPA has doled out nearly $10 million for environmental justice causes that include a multi million-dollar study on how pollution, stress and social factors affect “poor and underserved communities.” A New Jersey nonprofit (Lazos America Unida) that advocates on behalf of the “Mexican immigrant community” and a Missouri farm workers’ group that will increase awareness about the dangers of sun and heat exposure in migrant populations were among the recipients of that grant.

As if this weren’t bad enough, the EPA keeps wasting taxpayer dollars on these dubious causes. The latest allocation of $6.2 million will go to 21 “community groups” that will “recruit, train and place unemployed, predominately low-income residents in polluted areas” in Atlanta. Uncle Sam’s investment will “create good, green jobs that protect the health of local families and residents and prepare communities for continued economic growth,” according to Obama’s EPA chief, Lisa Jackson.

Program participants will master valuable skills such as “environmental site sampling” and “green building techniques” as well as “construction and demolition debris recycling” and “energy auditing and weatherization.” Graduates will use their skills to improve the environment and people’s health while supporting economic development in their communities, according to the EPA. Ideal candidates are “hard to place residents that live in the disadvantaged communities that will benefit the most through these projects.”

 Read More at Judicial Watch

Gang of Six gambit revives spending shell game

The combined forces of Democrats, the liberal media, and squishy Republicans are working to stampede Republicans into ratifying the expansion of the federal government from an average of under 20% of GDP up to 25%, where it stands after two and a half years of Obama. This is being done in the guise of the Gang of Six Plan (summary here), based on the Simpson-Bowles Commission, whose work was snubbed by President Obama when it was delivered several months ago.

The script being played out today is by now familiar in the age of Obama. Rather than confront problems in a timely manner, Obama waits until a crisis looms, scare-mongers about a nonexistent “crisis” (in this case, alleged “default” even though there is sufficient federal revenue to service debt and cover Social Security and Defense), and seeks to stampede Republicans into a “compromise” in which they provide real and immediate concessions in return for vague promises of something good happening sometime in the future.

The Gang claims “savings” of $3.7 trillion over ten years, but Sen. Jeff Sessions, who has seen the plan scores the actual cuts at 1.2 trillion. But “savings” promised beyond the current Congress are meaningless, since no Congress can obligate a future Congress’s ability to spend )or do anything else). In return, they are asked to buy into higher taxes, many of them in the form of “tax reform” eliminating “loopholes” such as the mortgage interest deduction. (If you think housing prices have crashed, just wait until mortgages are no longer deductible. I can think of no better way to further devastate the ressidential construction industry and the personal wealth of the middle class.)
Daniel Mitchell of Cato provides a guide what the GOP is being asked to accept as “compromise.”

Some key points (read the whole thing):

The entire package is based on dishonest Washington budget math. Spending increases under the plan, but the politicians claim to be cutting spending because the budget didn’t grow even faster.

 Read More at American Thinker By Thomas Lifson, American Thinker