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Politics

The #WaronWomen is over—and we won

By 11.7.14

Republicans are jubilant after their electoral victories Tuesday night — but it might be that Democratic losses tell a more complete story than GOP gains.

While voters almost uniformly backed conservative candidates, they also supported ballot measures out of sync with the traditional Republican party platform. Sure, marijuana legalization — which passed in the nation’s capital and in Oregon — can be chalked up to a rise in libertarians (me included), lurking at the margins of the GOP like the outsiders we’ve been since high school. But voters also approved non-binding hikes in the minimum wage in four states and three major cities. That’s hardly a hardline conservative position. So what gives? 

The easy answer is that Americans are, on the whole, idiots, who tune into elections at the last possible moment, when they simply can’t avoid it any longer. Hence the increase in television commercials the last two weeks, as the parties compete to see who can more effectively convince voters that the other guys are more likely to murder their grandmother, child, puppy, or cable television package — whichever they might find more important.

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Another Perspective

Is Jason Aldean the Obama of Country Music?

By 11.6.14

On Tuesday night, whether he wants to face it or not, President Obama received a stunning blow from the 2014 election results. The prestigious 2014 Country Music Association (CMA) annual awards extravaganza gave a similar comeuppance to country music superstar, Jason Aldean. The message? Personal popularity doesn’t give anyone the license to flaunt either America’s Constitutional principles or the Judeo-Christian values that are the protection of our people and the foundation of our society. Everyone knows President Obama’s story; let’s look at Aldean’s.

Jason Aldean enjoys pushing the envelope in his music and his behavior, generating the same kind of fan adulation that President Obama had in the early years. Plus, just as Mr. Obama promised to “transform” America, Aldean has vowed to move country music into “uncharted territory.” But some die-hard country music fans didn’t like the new direction when he began merging rap and country in his “Dirt Road Anthem” and “1994.” Many complained that he wasn’t “country” anymore.

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A Further Perspective

Dear Newly Elected Officials: You Are Not Our Daddy

By 11.6.14

After the Sandy Hook shooting in 2012, comedian Chris Rock made headlines.

Emotions were running high, and he spoke in favor of President Obama’s call for more gun control:

I am just here to support the President of the United States. The President of the United States is, you know, our boss. He’s also, you know, the president and the first lady are kinda like the mom and the dad of the country and when your dad says something, you listen.

He went on to say that when you don’t listen to your dad, there are consequences. Rock’s comments — so obviously ignorant — even drew laughs from other speakers standing behind him.

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Special Report

Obamacare as Permanent Welfare

By 11.6.14

President Reagan gauged the success of a welfare program by how quickly people were able to move off government assistance and into remunerative work. Yet President Obama, the White House, and their allies are measuring the success of Obamacare by how many people can be enrolled in their new government entitlement programs.

The president celebrated the law’s “success” in getting seven million people enrolled in Medicaid and eight million (or so) people enrolled in exchange coverage, 87 percent of whom are receiving government subsidies for their insurance. And he hopes to lure another five million people onto Obamacare programs starting with the November 15 enrollment period. There is no expectation that participation in these government programs will be a temporary boost but rather that they will become a permanent fixture in people’s lives.

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Political Hay

Conservative Leaders Challenge GOP Congress

By 11.6.14

The American people spoke loud and clear: stop Obama. Period. What they delivered Tuesday night was an unmitigated defeat for liberalism. They want Obamacare repealed, the economy unchained, and amnesty opposed. Among other things.

Yet with planted news stories from GOP establishment operatives in both the Washington Post and the New York Times the idea was being spread that this overwhelming rejection of liberals was in fact a victory for the very ruling class mindset that was explicitly campaigned against by all those Republican winners.

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The Current Crisis

The Elections and the Last Racists

By 11.6.14

So what did you think of the 2014 election? Do I hear talk of a wave election? Is 2014 another 2010 election? I think it is, and that makes it more significant than any other recent election, as I shall explain in due course.

Yet first review the outcome. Republicans have increased their margin in the House of Representatives. That was deemed unlikely a couple of days ago. They have captured the Senate, again a very questionable outcome according to the polls only a few days ago. They have won a majority of governorships, including in one-party Illinois, Maryland, and Massachusetts. Moreover, they probably have a majority of state legislatures. And one thing more—the Democrats’ leading campaigners continue, as has been true for years, to be the kiss of death to almost anyone they endorse. I am speaking of my friends, the Clintons.

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Buy the Book

Mini-Me to the Man Who Would Not Die

By From the Sept/Oct 2014 issue

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Economics

No Triple Mandate for the Federal Reserve

By and 11.5.14

A recent speech by Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen got considerable attention over her subtly implied suggestion that the Fed consider taking on a third mandate—reducing economic inequality—in addition to its current dual mandate of keeping inflation in check and unemployment as low as possible. Less noticed, but just as important, were her comments that “business ownership is associated with higher levels of economic mobility,” and that “it has become harder to start and build businesses.”

So is there a role the Fed could play in making entrepreneurship easier and less risky? Yes. Be more modest. Replace the Fed’s current dual mandate with a single mandate—keep the price system as honest and stable as possible.

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A Further Perspective

Reagan and Nixon: Two Speeches

By 11.5.14

Last week Ronald Reagan’s famous October 27 “A Time for Choosing” speech during the 1964 presidential campaign was justly commemorated on its 50th anniversary as Reagan’s dramatic entrance into national politics.

Less commemorated this week was the 45th anniversary of Richard Nixon’s momentous “Silent Majority” appeal to mainstream America to back his Vietnam policy against anti-war zealots demanding immediate surrender.

Asking support from the “great silent majority of my fellow Americans,” Nixon carefully explained that America had “no future as a free society” if an agitated “vocal minority” dictated national policy through street demonstrations. Citing signage cynically and impatiently demanding, “Lose in Vietnam, bring the boys home,” Nixon warned that defeatism and division among Americans would only hinder his power to negotiate a just peace with Communist North Vietnam.

“Let us be united for peace,” Nixon implored. “Let us also be united against defeat. Because let us understand: North Vietnam cannot defeat or humiliate the United States. Only Americans can do that.”

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Another Perspective

Fort Hood Five Years Later

By 11.5.14

It is the morning of November 5, 2014, and Republicans and conservative activists are overjoyed with last night’s election results which, among other things, saw the GOP take over the Senate, Wisconsin’s Scott Walker winning his third election in four years and Republicans regaining the Governor’s mansion in Massachusetts (subject to a possible recount).

But this morning, the joy is tempered by both sadness and anger. For it was five years ago today, that 12 soldiers, a civilian, and an unborn child were slaughtered in an act of both treason and terrorism by Army psychiatrist Nidal Malik Hasan. As Hasan killed his fellow soldiers, he shouted “Allahu Akbar!!!” over and over again. In his possession were business cards bearing the inscription “S of A,” meaning Soldier of Allah.

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