“No Man’s life liberty or property is safe while the legislature is in session”.

- attributed to NY State Judge Gideon Tucker

Friday, October 29, 2010

Frisco Nan & Funding Sources

It's pretty rich that House Speaker Frisco Nan claims that 'everything was fine, then all this unidentified money came into GOP coffers,' or words to that effect.

Several significant red herrings have been tossed out by leading Democrats, e.g., the Chamber of Commerce allegedly spending foreign donations in political campaigns, various private, soft dollar conservative organizations spending on behalf of GOP candidates, and more teeth gnashing over the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision.

However, Karl Rove displayed an informative piece of paper a few days ago on Neil Cavuto's Fox News program. On it, he sketched out the total spending for both parties from various sources, showing that friendly union campaign spending on behalf of the Democrats brought that party to something like $300-400MM more in contributions than that spent for Republicans.

It's so typical that Nan & Co. raise specters of possible campaign funding rules violations and bemoan Citizens United, while their union buddies take full advantage of that decision to actually borrow money that their members dues' must repay, in order to spend it on Democratic candidates.

Wouldn't it all be simpler if McCain-Feingold and other, earlier complicated campaign funding laws were repealed, in favor of simply forcing the immediate publication of donors, while dispensing with all the other rules?

Like it or not, campaign donations and sympathetic communications constitute a form of free speech. I don't trust any Congressional attempts to limit that, because those attempts are inherently biased in favor of the sitting members who pass such legislation.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The NAACP vs Tea Parties

A recent Wall Street Journal editorial by Jason Riley, a member of its editorial board, took the NAACP to task for worrying about tangential issues like the Tea Parties, while ignoring issues you'd think would be more central to its mission.

Riley provided several examples of how the NAACP has wasted its time and money alleging, incorrectly, that the Tea Party movement is racist, while young blacks experience a 41% unemployment rate, dismal educational performance, and a continuing curse from single-parent households.

He closes his convincing piece with this passage,

"It's hard to understand how an organization that says it's devoted to "end[ing] racial disparities" finds the time to rail against tea-party populism until you grasp that the NAACP is, first and foremost, a Democratic Party organ. The NAACP is pretending that the tea party threatens the interests of blacks because the tea party in fact threatens the interests of the Democratic left. The civil rights leadership wants to discredit the movement for political reasons. And unfortunately, this partisan agenda takes priority over the many issues of consequence that confront blacks today."

Strong, but true words. And an important reminder in an era where NPR fronts for George Soros, and much of the current election cycle's spending has come through left-leaning unions and various privately-organized entities backing both parties' agendas.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Juan Williams-NPR Flap

I realize I'm about a week late to this story. That should give you some idea of how trivial I think it is.

Basically, NPR canned liberal Juan Williams because he stated his feelings of anxiety when seeing people dressed in burkas on airplanes, when on a Fox News program.

The firestorm which erupted cast NPR in a bad light because it chose some innocuous little rule on which to base its firing of Williams. Critics trotted out Nina Totenberg's decade-old clip wishing Jessie Helms' grandchildren an unpleasant death from AIDS as proof that the network was playing favorites.

Okay. News flash- NPR is really liberal. Williams isn't the most liberal guy there. So they found a very public instance of his behavior that they felt they could attack and used it to fire him.

Now, for Christ sake, you'd think Williams was dead, gone to heaven, then rose from the dead and is a canonized Saint.

Honestly, this guy is nothing special. Like most liberals, he's not too bright. If he were, well, he'd be conservative, wouldn't he?

Like most liberals, he has no sense of how real people behave in society. He, too, seemed to be missing in action the day God handed out the common sense about people's economic and general social motivating behaviors.

Some liberals are just plain stupid. That would be, say, Alan Combs. Others are smart, but missing that ability to understand how most real people behave. That would be Williams.

If you've seen Williams on Fox, he typically gives a knee-jerk defense of any liberal elected official, like Wonderboy or Frisco Nan, in response to reasonable, informed remarks by people like Steven Hayes or Charles Krauthammer. No matter how inane he looks, he always comes to the defense of his ideological kin.

When I hear people like O'Reilly and Krauthammer say what a great guy Williams is, and how they are friends, I wonder what they are smoking. Maybe they're just spouting a Fox News line to keep Williams on board.

After all, let's face it, Williams is a two-for. Not simply liberal, but a black liberal. Even Colmes isn't that valuable.

And how much richer can it get than for Fox to rush to Williams' defense, then give him a new contract as the networks official token in residence, at NPR's expense?

Sure, let's defund NPR. It's way past time. And, yes, NPR is now basically on Soros' payroll. Williams' firing at an inopportune time, right before the mid-term elections, probably won't help Democrats, either.

But c'mon. Let's not go overboard. Juan Williams is hardly God's gift to journalism or cable news and opinion programs. What he is is a tolerable liberal who serves a purpose of providing Fox with more balance than their rivals.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Ted Kaufman- Instant Senate Mossback

Delaware's appointed Democratic Senator Ted Kaufman was on CNBC again this morning, blowing hot air as hard as usual.

There are several things about Kaufman which astound me. First, he tries to come off as an outsider appointed to fill Biden's last two years. But as his bio reveals, Kaufman has been an aide to Biden for nearly two decades, first working for him as a volunteer in the latter's first Senate campaign.

Recently, though not an attorney, Kaufman has been teaching a course concerning "The Congress" at his undergraduate alma mater, Duke's law school. From this, Kaufman seems to have acquired a patina of academic and non-partisan nature. Neither of which is true.

But Kaufman is not leaving politics after next January. Instead, he's been tapped by the current Democratic Senate leadership to replace financial-scold-in-chief, Elizabeth Warren, as head of the TARP oversight committee. Other than his anti-Wall Street disposition, Kaufman has no particular background whatsoever for this position.

In fact, to the contrary, Kaufman is completely naive and wrong-headed about the sector. He blabbered about how there was no regulation in 2008. That's simply untrue. In prior posts of mine, and elsewhere in business literature. many have noted that we had more than enough regulators and regulations. What we didn't have was effective people doing their jobs when already sufficiently empowered to do so.

So much for enlightened leadership from the new TARP oversight comittee head. He's an idiot who has no understanding of what he's about to oversee.

This is all of interest to me because, in the many appearances Kaufman has made on CNBC's morning program, he is introduced as a novice appointed Senator and academic. Clearly gross misrepresentation. In fact, Kaufman is a Delaware Democratic political hack who has served Biden since his first election to the Senate.

Thus, Kaufman's raging anti-business comments are positioned by the on-air staff as those of moderate near-non-partisan Senator.

This morning, for example, they bemoaned his leaving the Senate, grouping him with Evan Bayh and a few other retiring Democrats as the moderates who would be necessary to forge compromise in the new Senate.

Nevermind that there's been two years of take-no-prisoners, uncompromising legislative stiff-arming by the Democrats.

Kaufman went on to savage Republicans and laugh about how they are leaderless, when asked to handicap the prospects of various potential presidential candidates in the GOP.

For what it's worth, the GOP has a history of nominating candidates from among a large field, who have frequently gone on to the White House. This was certainly true of George W. Bush and Ronald Reagan. Even Nixon, for that matter.

Anyway, I began the post thinking that Kaufman was some outsider from Delaware who became a cynical, hacked-up mossback in just 20+ months. Now, however, I realize he's had nearly two decades of training on Senate staffs and in political election fights.

He did become a Senate mossback instantly. But after reviewing his past, it's understandable, because he is precisely the sort of Senator most Americans no longer want in office, i.e., a man who's been a professional political aide for nearly two decades. Feeding at the public trough while adding nothing of any particular or notable value.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Andrew Cuomo's Forgotten Past

I'm simply amazed that New York Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Cuomo has been able to distance himself from the damage he personally caused as Bill Clinton's HUD secretary.

Perhaps only Barney Frank, Chris Dodd and Kent Conrad bear as much personal responsibility for the recent housing finance crisis and the financial meltdown it triggered.

Cuomo's ineptitude was reinforced by a recent article in the Wall Street Journal entitled Audit Faulted Cuomo's HUD Overhaul.

Within the piece, details inform us that,

"The Inspector General's audit report also claimed that senior officials under Mr. Cuomo sought to impede investigators examining the program and took the unusual step of asking the Inspector General's office for the names of HUD employees who spoke with auditors.

Several HUD employees "feared reprisal" and urged investigators to keep their communications confidential, according to the audit report."

Further on in the article, Cuomo's attempts to get these names, and the excuses offered by his minions, are provided. It makes for incredibly transparent and disturbng reading,

"Saul Ramirez, a deputy secretary under Mr. Cuomo, said the requeset for the names was "standard procedure" and intended to help headquarters  organize the schedules of field staffers involved in the auditing process."

It's a non-answer answer, isn't it?

But, moving back to the big picture, it's simply incredible to me that Cuomo has so successfully danced away from his culpability for the housing mess. And now wants to run an entire state.

It's probably a mark of the inadequacy of political opposition in New York that none of Cuomo's opponents seems to have bothered to connect the dots and hang this liability around the son of a former governor of the state.

Which I guess demonstrates that New York has a bad habit of selling its Senate seats to carpetbaggers and allowing for way too much plutocracy and cronyism in important elected state positions.