Friday, August 31, 2012

The Grassroots Speak

I've seen e-mails with pictures of quite a number of signs and billboards. Not signs from the campaigns, but signs made by individuals expressing their own opinions.

And I have seen another comparable sign — quiet and understated, just there. This one is just off the Interstate (I-25) in Belen, New Mexico.

Yes, it is the same on both sides. Yes, it is lighted at night.

This is the sound of the grassroots speaking.

Monday, August 27, 2012

A Fascinating Observation

I've heard time and again during this campaign about how some candidate or other has made some statement as a kind of "racial dog whistle" to his supporters. One of the most recent such claims, made by a large variety of folks on the Left, had to do with Mitt Romney's joke about his birth certificate. MSNBC described that joke as "the most despicable bigotry we can imagine."

My first thought when I saw that, was that those folks have very stunted imaginations if this was the worst they could imagine. My second was that their imaginations were pretty warped if they imagined this was bigotry.

And then a fascinating thought struck me: Isn't it interesting that the only ones that can hear and understand these "dog whistles" are Obama supporters — liberals, progressives, and other associated Lefty Democrats?

Friday, August 24, 2012

Highlights of the Obama Campaign

The presidential re-election campaign of President Barack Obama continues. And, since he can't run on his record, he continues to run on distraction.

And, of course, it will get worse. Indeed, I expect the worst this year.

Harry Reid Follow-Up

Senator Harry Reid (D-NV), the Senate majority leader, has become famous for making wild charges and insisting everyone accept them as if they were real. In his world, it's "guilty till proven innocent."

Then there's the issue of why Reid is doing this. And why President Barack Obama and his Whihte House and his Administration and his campaign have all refused to disavow Reid's fantasies. It makes me think they put him up to it.

These both seem to be related to Reid's fantasy charge that Romney hasn't paid any taxes in ten years. (That's a hard charge to support, given that Romney has released his 2010 return and most of his developing 2011 return — both of which show he paid taxes.)

I'm Back

My computer died. Belly up.

But now I have a new one. Got most of the software installed, too.

I'm back.

Monday, August 6, 2012

It's Not About Health Care

The horribly mis-named Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (popularly known as Obamacare) isn't about health care — it's about insurance. Or, to put it another way,

One of the harder realities is that health care reform is not about public health. That's the mistake people make. . . . Health care reform is public finance. And when you get into public finance, it's not about doing a study to guide policy; it's about creating a business plan.
      — Ralph de la Torre, CEO, Steward Health Care System,
          "health care's new maverick"

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Harry Reid's Friend

Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) says presidential candidate Mitt Romney hasn't paid any taxes in ten years. He said an investor in Bain Capital told him that in a phone call.

Reid's claim, by itself, raises a few questions. One is time frame. Reid is talking about ten years, which may be the last ten years or the ten years preceding the tax returns Romney has released. That would be ten years beginning in either 2002 or 2000. But Romney was hired in 1999 as president and CEO of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee for the 2002 Winter Olympics. He was brought in there to fix the problems they were having; he wasn't at Bain Capital. When that task finished, he ran for and was elected governor of Massachusetts later that year; he wasn't at Bain Capital.

Then there is another class of questions. What would anybody at Bain Capital know about Romney's taxes beyond whatever residual income he might have gotten from Bain — even if Romney had still been at Bain full-time? And beyond that, what would a mere investor know about details of the tax returns of anyone there?

But Harry Reid insists on spreading the charges, with the blessing of the Obama campaign (and probably of Barack Obama himself). And Reid insists Romney must answer these charges, that Romney is guilty until he proves himself innocent.

In the face of all this, how can Harry Reid's friend know what Reid says he knows? One writer says the answer is clear: Imaginary people know everything.

I disagree a bit. It seems to me the answer is that Harry Reid and the rest of the national Democrat leadership are simply making stuff up, for obvious political reasons. And then others — like former governors Ed Rendel (D-PA) and Ted Strickland (D-OH) on CBS' Face the Nation this morning — wrongly put their trust in these misleaders.

Why are Reid et al. doing this? That, too, seems clear: Anything to move the discussion away from Barack Obama and his record.

UPDATE: If, indeed, Harry Reid's claim is that Mitt Romney hasn't paid any taxes "in the past 10 years", the charge disproves itself. The two years of tax returns Romney has released (2010 and 2011) show he paid taxes — a lot of taxes — in those two years, which are part of "the past 10 years."

Thursday, August 2, 2012

You May Be A Liberal . . .

Yes, Mrs Critter and I went into Albuquerque yesterday (that's where our nearest Chick-Fil-A is) and got a couple of chicken sandwiches with waffle fries and soft drinks. It took a long time to get through the drive-up line, and the walk-up was no better — both came out and circled the building, and we weren't there at a peak time! But, even then, we saw reporters and news photographers there, and a TV crew setting up and starting to film. Later in the day, we saw feature reports from the Chick-Fil-A restaurants on all three networks' local news broadcasts.

Kerry's Assessment of the Global Climate Change Challenge

Senator John Kerry (D, MA), "the haughty, French-looking Massachusetts Democrat who by the way served in Vietnam", delivered this assessment of the seriousness of "climate change"

I believe that the situation we face, Mr. President, is as dangerous as any of the sort of real crises that we talk about
As dangerous as a real crisis? That sounds to me like quite an admission.