Archive for July, 2009

Updated Cash For Clunkers News!

According to Fox News, the Obama administration is encouraging buyers and dealers to buy and sell over the weekend. No one knows what has been spent, where additional monies might come from, or any of the pesky details, but, don’t worry, be happy.

So, enjoy the weekend and if you’re lucky enough to own a clunker, enjoy the taxpayer largess. ($4500 sure will buy a lot of beer!)

- Aggie

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Forgive Them, Messiah, For They Know Not What They Do

We can’t all be as smart as Andrea Mitchell:

Andrea Mitchell has suggested that the problem Pres. Obama is facing in selling his health care plan to Americans who already have coverage is that people “may not know what’s good for them.”

Mitchell made her condescending comment on today’s Morning Joe.

You’ve got 47% of the people in our NBC/Wall Street Journal opinion poll who have health insurance who don’t like what the president is doing. The problem he’s got — 47% of the people who’ve got coverage don’t want change. They don’t like what they’re hearing. Now, they may not know what’s good for them, but the problem is that he always knew he was going to have to persuade people with insurance, that’s the largest number, not the people without insurance, for expanded coverage. So they’ve got a real problem.

Condescension seems to be in the MSNBC air. Yesterday, we noted Chris Matthews, surprised that Sgt. James Crowley could handle a press conference, calling him “our Susan Boyle.”

Well, you can’t expect President Obama to bother with the small details. He’s got other people for that.

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Would You Buy a House From This Man?

Okay, Vigilant Reader Judi really needs to find something to do with her time. Until that tragic day comes, however, we are blessed that she sends us links to interesting—and hysterical—stuff:

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Home Crisis Investigation
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political Humor Joke of the Day

I bet Tim Geithner is a great guy to have a beer with—as long as he’s buying. But other than pouring free money into the coffers of the big banks (whose profits have amazingly skyrocketed as a result), what exactly has he done for the economy?

Even the supposed good news isn’t all that good when you look at it:

Alan Lancz, money manager at Alan B. Lancz & Associates, said the GDP report signaled the economy was improving, but he worries that investors are getting ahead of themselves and buying stocks as if the economy will rebound quickly off the bottom.

“The good news is it’s heading in the right direction and the bad news is the higher the market moves the more it’s discounting a V-shaped recovery,” he said.

The GDP report is the strongest sign yet that the recession is winding down. However, the Commerce Department revised the first-quarter GDP figure much lower, saying economic activity tumbled 6.4 percent. That is the worst quarterly reading in nearly 30 years.

The latest report also said consumers cut spending by 1.2 percent in the second quarter, after a 0.6 percent increase in the first quarter.

Investors have been looking to consumers to help lead the economy out of a recession. Spending has been cut as consumers continue to worry about jobs. The unemployment rate is expected to move higher after hitting a 26-year high of 9.5 percent in June.

“We’re still not in very good shape in the employment part,” said Steven Stahler, president of the Stahler Group in Baton Rouge, La., adding he doesn’t expect to see consumers leading the country of out recession soon.

Maybe the economy is bottoming out, but the next unemployment report is going to make that hard to sell. The statute of limitations for Blaming Bush is perilously close to running out. Soon, there will be lots of Obamavilles—shanty towns and tent cities reminiscent of the Hoovervilles of the Great Depression—blotting the landscape.

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We’re Tripling The Clunkers Program

Get ‘em while they’re hot!!!

I feel so sorry for anyone who doesn’t have a beat-up old car that gets 18 mpg or less. They’re missing the party!

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — The House on Friday passed a bill to allocate another $2 billion to the Cash for Clunkers program.

The move came after reports on Thursday had raised concerns that the program was out of money.

The bill which diverts $2 billion from a U.S. Department of Energy program loan guarantee program, passed 316-109. The bill will face tough opposition in the Senate which is not expected to vote before Monday.

“I’m pleased about the progress made in the House today about the cash for clunkers program,” said President Obama, in a speech immediately following the vote.

If Obama is pleased, I’m pleased.

- Aggie

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Our First Bumper Sticker

We might be able to sell 250,000 of these:

I Bought This With Cash For Clunkers
Thanks Everybody!
:)

What’d'ya think?

- Aggie

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A New Blog

When TOTUS Blog was born, we told you about it.

Now, it’s the Biden Gaffe-o-meter, JoeBidenSaidThat

“When the stock market crashed, Franklin D. Roosevelt got on the television and didn’t just talk about the, you know, the princes of greed. He said, ‘Look, here’s what happened,’”

To be honest, it’s a little sketchy so far—but then, there’s a lot of material to catch up on.

A blogger wakes up in the morning with the nagging fear that he or she will have nothing to write about. The proprietor of JBST just rolls over and scrunches downs into the pillow, warm in the certainty that his blog practically writes itself.

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Note To The Left: Diversity In Israel

kindergartensudanimap.jpg

A kindergarten worker taking care of Sudanese refugee children on Thursday in the southern town of Arad. (Israel)

The Left believes in the destructive fantasy that Israel is a racist, colonialist, white power. This is a lie. Not really a misunderstanding, a lie. Anyone who looks into the demographics of the country knows this. BTL often comments on how they take in refugees that would otherwise be sent back to die, unlike the surrounding Arab countries. And those refugees know that life is better in Israel, not perfect but saner, so they try very hard to get in.

- Aggie

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More On The Clunkers Running Our Country

Which is it fellas? Broke or Suspended or Still on?

WASHINGTON — New-car shoppers appear to have already snapped up all the $1 billion that Congress appropriated for the “cash for clunkers” program, leading the Transportation Department to tell auto dealers Thursday night to stop offering the rebates.
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Related
Rules May Limit Cash for Clunkers Program (June 27, 2009)

But a White House official said the program had not been suspended, creating confusion about its status. The program offers $3,500 to $4,500 for people who trade in an old car for a new one with higher fuel economy.

In a statement issued Thursday evening, Robert Gibbs, the White House press secretary, said: “We are working tonight to assess the situation facing what is obviously an incredibly popular program. Auto dealers and consumers should have confidence that all valid CARS transactions that have taken place to date will be honored.”

The program, formally known as the Car Allowance Rebate System, was scheduled to be offered until Nov. 1, or as long as the money was available. But the program was so successful that it has exhausted all the money allocated within the first week. Dealers have submitted applications on behalf of consumers seeking rebates on about a quarter-million vehicles.

It is the lack of planning and common sense that just offends the intellect. The government offers to give away free money and they don’t plan for the obvious popularity of the program. So, they suspend it. Or don’t. And we’ve run out of money. Or haven’t.

Amazing.

- Aggie

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Shots for Snots


The cashews are mine, hair-plug boy.

If you’re wondering why Vice President Biden crashed the kegger in the Rose Garden, I heard local radio talk show hostess Michelle McPhee offer what seemed a reasonable and deliciously cynical explanation.

The 1994 crime bill:

When Joe Biden has taken an interest in domestic policy, it has mostly had to do with crime. Of the 31 substantive domestic policy bills the Democratic vice presidential nominee has introduced since 2006, 20 related to crime and policing. His single most significant legislative achievement–one that Barack Obama singled out in his remarks introducing Biden as his running mate–remains the massive 1994 crime bill.

Not surprisingly, Biden’s the go-to guy on Capitol Hill for many of America’s police leaders. “More than just about anyone else, he really gets it,” says Providence, Rhode Island, police chief Dean Esserman. “He really does care about cops.”

Maybe we don’t know why a guy who for once didn’t get the administration in trouble with his big mouth was trotted before the cameras—but the cops got the message: he really does care about cops.

Fine. Wise political move. Some of Obama’s best friends care about cops.

He—and Skip Gates—on the other hand, just don’t cotton on to pigs:

[A] black Cambridge police sergeant on the scene the day of Gates’ arrest wrote a letter to Crowley, asking him to mention to Gates and Obama that he is now known as the “black sergeant” and to some others as an “uncle Tom.”

“I’m forced to ponder the notion that as a result of speaking the truth and coming to the defense of a friend and colleague, who just happens to be white, that I have somehow betrayed my heritage,” Sgt. Leon Lashley wrote. “Please convey my concerns to the president that Mr. Gates’ actions may have caused grave and potentially irreparable harm to the struggle for racial harmony in this country and perhaps throughout the world.”

Lashley wrote in the letter he would like Gates to reflect on the incident and ask himself what responsibility he bears, what he can do to heal the rift and what he can do to mitigate the damage done to the officers’ reputations.

The beer may have been peed and belched away, but the bitter taste will linger for a while longer.

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Keystone Kops Running The Country

Cash for clunkers program suspended

For those of you who don’t know, Cash for Clunkers is a brilliant program the Obama administration put together to spend your tax dollars paying for your friends and neighbors to purchase a new car. Specifically, if you own a car that the government believes gets 18 miles per gallon or less, they will give you either $3500 or $4500 if you purchase a new vehicle that gets better gas mileage. If you trade in an old car for a new car, and the new car gets 10 miles per gallon better than your old car, you get $4500; if less than 10mph better, but more than 5 or something, you get $3500. SUV to SUV only requires 5 or 6 miles a gallon to get the $4500.

It is the stupidest program ever, on so many levels, but hey, it’s a great deal. It means that you can turn in an old junker, worth less than $500 and receive $4500, or roughly 25% of a typical new car.

Only, they just announced that they are suspending it after just one week.

WASHINGTON (AP) – Congressional officials say the government plans to suspend the popular “cash for clunkers” program amid concerns it could quickly use up the $1 billion in rebates for new car purchases.

The Transportation Department called congressional offices late Thursday to alert them to the decision to halt the program, which offered owners of old cars and trucks $3,500 or $4,500 toward a new, more fuel-efficient vehicle.

The congressional officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly.

Through late Wednesday, 22,782 vehicles had been purchased through the program and nearly $96 million had been spent. But dealers raised concerns of large backlogs in the system, prompting the suspension.

What morons. They offered free money and they are surprised that people lined up to grab it.

- Aggie

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Maybe Someday He’ll Be President

Maybe we can “bend” the Constitution and make him President in three years

Just kidding. But he is impressive.

iowahasid.jpg

Wouldn’t that be something? A black, Hasidic Jew, from Iowa. Sounds like a sci-fi novel.

A minority among minorities, Yosef Abrahamson opens minds

Thoughtful, cool, almost cerebral, Yosef Abrahamson is not your average Crown Heights Brooklyn Lubavitcher Chasidic Orthodox Jewish black teen Republican from Omaha, Nebraska. Then again, the 17-year-old two-time winner of the NYPD’s “Commissioner for a Day” essay contest is not exactly average anything, either.

Born in Omaha into an unbroken matrilineal line descended from German Jewish immigrants and raised by his devoted mom, long-time Nebraska GOP activist and national delegate Dinah Abrahamson, along with older sister Sarah, Yosef grew up in the Cornhusker State’s Republican Party. In the state’s GOP, Yosef joined his mother in hobnobbing with such heavyweights as Hal Daub, Mike Johanns, Lee Terry and later, George W. Bush, over a lifetime of political activism.

Who is Yosef Abrahamson? What drives him?

Well, in what aspect of life do you mean? Of course, here [in yeshivah high school in Crown Heights] what drives me is wanting to grow more in learning and Torah, and in the political sense, just wanting to see what’s going on and having a part in the direction the world is taking.

So you want to put down political roots here?

Right.

Do you see yourself running for City Council or Mayor in New York eventually?

I don’t know about New York, but… I don’t know. The actually running thing is very difficult for me to wrap my mind around even though I love being a part of helping the right candidate get into office, but I’m not sure if I would 100% want to actually be a politician; for now I’m just content watching and helping as best I can these great people shape the country.

Why do people equate conservatives with Republicans?

Probably because Republicans and conservatives do have a lot of the same interests at heart, but [from] a Democratic standpoint I could see it as someone who is a potential opponent for them, and worldwide I think it’s just because they do share a lot of the same values.

Read more at Hip Hop Republican

So I’m going to Hip Hop Republican to learn more. And here he is.

What are the unique challenges of being a black Orthodox Jewish Republican teenager?

People ask questions, and I guess some people don’t think that if you’re dark-skinned now in this era that you should support someone that’s not black, let’s say, as in President Obama as president: we were strongly for McCain. So I guess that sorta had people kinda strung the wrong way but really, you have to look at the issues and what each candidate stands for, and that’s the most important thing. Skin color shouldn’t have anything to do with that. And as for [being] Jewish, of course you have to look at our heritage as Jews and the message that we stand for as Chasids [sic] and have to incorporate that into who should lead the country and so on and so forth.

What would be the biggest stereotype you’ve helped shatter, then?

Hmmm…. I’m guessing that “someone dark-skinned can’t be Jewish.” I was born Jewish, my mother’s line straight directly through, and complexion shouldn’t have anything to do with that …. That’s probably the biggest stereotype that I’m hoping has been shattered and continues to be shattered.

So where are you getting it worse from? From Jewish people who never saw a black Jew, or blacks who never saw a black Jew?

It’s really been not so in your face as people would have you think. People do occasionally come and ask questions, “How can you be Jewish and dark-skinned?”

Is that black or Jewish?

More black people, ’cause they see me with my [traditional Chasidic] black hat and jacket, but I just explain to them the background and more or less, they get it.

Where sort of future do you envision for the Republican Party?

Hopefully we can get all the stormy weather clear and we can go back to being the dominant party, because the Republican Party really has the best ethics and values of anyone out there right now. We just have to reestablish that and come back stronger, which I think we’ll do in the coming years once we see that the other side’s ideas aren’t working, as is being shown right now. It’s just not working. And our ideas work.

How do you get the message out that the [Democratic] ideas don’t work? Because the majority of America wouldn’t really agree with that.

It’s starting to show now, subtle things are showing that some of the ideas the Democrats have aren’t clicking with the country. This recession is not getting any better right now. We have to put forth the ideas and show that our message is the stronger one, and that’s how Republicans get back into the position of leading this country.

He’s only 17. I hope and pray that he has a wonderful future.

- Aggie

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Mission Accomplished

Obama responds:

“I don’t know whether you’ve seen the cover of the latest NEWSWEEK magazine on the rack at the grocery store, but the cover says, “The Recession Is Over!”I bet you found that news a little startling. I know I did. Here’s what’s true: we’ve stopped the free fall. The market is up and the financial system is no longer on the verge of collapse. We’re losing jobs at half the rate we were when I took office six months ago … So, we may be seeing the beginning of the end of the recession. But that’s little comfort if you’re one of the folks who have lost their job, and haven’t found another …”

And Newsweek re-responds:

The article notes—as Obama’s speech does—that the discussion surrounding the end of the recession is largely a technical discussion (“GDP growth alone can’t feed a family, or a pay a mortgage”) and that we face tough economic times and a recovery that will feel a lot like a recession. The article then goes on—as Obama’s speech does—to discuss the impact of the stimulus package passed in February and the importance of health-care reform to the economy’s longer-term health.

Newsweek is guilty of having loved not wisely but too well. Obama wants a little space, he wants to see other publications. Their journalistic license should have been pulled long ago. What they’re practicing is barely legal between consenting adults—only in private, and not in some of the more conservative counties in Texas.

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