SF newspaper to White House: Liar, liar

There’s something especially delicious about all of this. Maybe because San Francisco is the epicenter of liberalism? Journalists. San Francisco. Discover Obama and his minions are liars. Heh.

Editor-at-large Phil Bronstein:

In a pants-on-fire moment, the White House press office today denied anyone there had issued threats to remove Carla Marinucci and possibly other Hearst reporters from the press pool covering the President in the Bay Area.

Chronicle editor Ward Bushee called the press office on its fib:

Sadly, we expected the White House to respond in this manner based on our experiences yesterday. It is not a truthful response. It follows a day of off-the-record exchanges with key people in the White House communications office who told us they would remove our reporter, then threatened retaliation to Chronicle and Hearst reporters if we reported on the ban, and then recanted to say our reporter might not be removed after all.

The Chronicle’s report is accurate.

If the White House has indeed decided not to ban our reporter, we would like an on-the-record notice that she will remain the San Francisco print pool reporter.

I was on some of those calls and can confirm Ward’s statement.

Messy ball now firmly in White House court.

Another gem:

The hip, transparent and social media-loving Obama administration is showing its analog roots. And maybe even some hypocrisy highlights.

If the media were capable of performing its true function–inform, not obfuscate–that would be one thing. But the idea of the fourth estate turning on The One they helped elect is too much for me this morning. Of course they’ll make amends: there is, after all, an agenda to advance.

 Doesn’t make this any less fun, though, does it?

 

“Shoppers running out of money”

Wal-mart shoppers, but really it’s all of us. From CNN Money:

Wal-Mart’s core shoppers are running out of money much faster than a year ago due to rising gasoline prices, and the retail giant is worried, CEO Mike Duke said Wednesday.

“We’re seeing core consumers under a lot of pressure,” Duke said at an event in New York. “There’s no doubt that rising fuel prices are having an impact.”

Wal-Mart shoppers, many of whom live paycheck to paycheck, typically shop in bulk at the beginning of the month when their paychecks come in.

Lately, they’re “running out of money” at a faster clip, he said.

“Purchases are really dropping off by the end of the month even more than last year,” Duke said. “This end-of-month [purchases] cycle is growing to be a concern.

It’s not just end of the month. It’s difficult not to notice the breathtaking prices of what used to be everyday items.  Have you noticed this?

A woman at Costco wondered aloud to her husband about the Kirkland brand bacon earlier this week. I vouched for its tastiness. She thanked me, adding that bacon at Wal-mart was now over $5 a pound. “At Wal-mart!” she exclaimed. I nodded and said we felt the same pinch.

I heard much of the same this morning at a handful of yard sales while hunting for clothing and book bargains for pjToddler. “We can’t afford to buy new clothes anymore” is a common refrain.

An Instapundit reader reports:

As a PA resident I can attest to the sea change in attitudes towards Barack Obama here.

It’s public, it’s palpable and it’s entirely due to inflation.

It’s astonishing to me that a bunch of guys who are supposed to be so smart think that women aren’t going to the grocery store and leaving in a state of shock, disbelief and, occasionally, panic.

And a Democrat who frightens women cannot win anything. Period.

I just started playing a sort of instant citizen poll at stores. It began a week or so ago at Sams’ Club:

I was in one of THOSE lines and ended up chatting with a well dressed middle aged woman with a cart half full of grocery items.

I made mention of the fact that while I didn’t normally make the hike to Sams’ that with prices going up I figured I had to make the effort.

She exploded: Prices are sky high, she’s feeding three kids, eating store brands and sale items but can’t afford to stock up, on and on.

Then the lady in front of HER piped in: if prices keep going up she doesn’t know what she’ll do, their budget is already at the breaking point, trying to keep a daughter in college, off she goes.

Then a man in the next line over heard them and HE jumped in: this is ridiculous, Washington is killing us, economy broken, he’s off to the races.

I thought maybe this was just a coincidence, so I’ve started the same conversation in store lines twice more in the past week and it’s exactly the same: people are frightened and EVERYONE wants to talk about it out loud.

The interesting thing to me is that everyone used to be very reluctant to speak out in public against Obama. You were always afraid some leftie whackjob would hear you and tear into you. You know what I mean.

But now the gloves are off, people are freaking out and Obama can raise FIVE billion dollars for his campaign and organize until the cows come home and call everyone in the country a racist until he turns blue but it’s not going to convince anyone that they’re not paying an arm and a leg for half a cart worth of food.

There is no more basic thing to people, and it’s off the hook.

I don’t see how the Republicans could possibly mess this up. Then again, after a lifetime of watching them do just that, if there’s way they’ll find it.

Ain’t that the truth.

Do you have grocery line conversations? How do you extend grocery dollars? If you’re one of those for whom beans don’t agree, try kombu and longer soaking times. I had read kombu (a sea vegetable, look in the Asian aisle) helps aid digestion before, but I never knew why: it contains the enzyme to help digest a sugar found in beans we’re incapable of digesting on our own (oligosaccharides if you’re a geek and need to know). Cool beans, eh?

Michelle and Jill: We heart the troops and families even though we hate what they do!

From Parade Magazine’s cover story last Sunday, an interview with Michelle Obama and Jill Biden regarding their newfound passion for military families: 

JILL BIDEN: It would create a lot of patriotism, you know, that feeling I had as a child. We just need to say to America, “Wake up. You need to support these families and we need to lift them up and really value them.”

MICHELLE OBAMA:
And the truth is, I think that’s how most Americans feel.

BIDEN: Yeah, I agree.

OBAMA: If you stop anyone on the streets — we’re not at that point anymore and we’ve grown as a country.

PARADE:
Beyond the Vietnam War mentality.

BIDEN: Exactly, exactly.

OBAMA: You can hate the war but value the troops.

Emphasis mine. That really says it all, doesn’t it? We’ve grown as a country in Michelle’s eyes because her husband was elected.

You cannot “hate the war but value the troops.” It’s not possible to “value” them or their families if you have no respect for what they do or why they do it. To pretend otherwise is condescending, irrational and the epitome of fakery. But then again, we’re talking about Michelle Obama. Makes sense, huh?

Related: Michelle and Jill on tour, helping military families (or something like that)  and The plot thickens on Michelle and Jill’s magical help-military-families tour

Of course it makes sense to nominate someone with no military experience to head the DOD in the middle of two wars and one “kinetic action.”

If your intent is to inflict as much harm to the military as possible.

From The Hill:

Obama two weeks ago said he wanted to find another $400 billion in savings from defense spending over the next 12 years, something Gates was said to be resisting. Now Panetta will be the man charged with pushing those cuts through a reluctant Department of Defense.

Shifting Panetta to DOD “probably means bigger cuts to the defense budget,” said Loren Thompson of the Lexington Institute.

“Secretary Gates was strongly committed to maintaining a robust defense posture, but Panetta will be more interested in getting along with the White House, which must find ways of cutting the deficit,” Thompson said.

More:

But aides and defense sources predicted a top charge for Panetta will be to keep alive the internal cost-trimming program Gates initiated last year. That effort uncovered over $100 billion in savings, most of which was redirected into hardware accounts, with some monies going to help pare the deficit.

While the outgoing defense secretary terminated or truncated over 50 hardware programs after Obama took office, he has argued strongly in recent months against going any further.

Gates spent ample political capital to convince White House officials to approve using those savings to beef up hardware accounts, warning against a defense budget-slashing drill that would create a “hollow force.”

How better to leave a lasting liberal impression on the military than by eviscerating it? The Code Pinkers would be pleased. After all, we can’t be the “world’s leading terrorists” if we’re left unable to fight or defend ourselves. Consider this gem from Politico:

Even though Obama is sympathetic to the desire to curb the negative impacts of a global U.S. military posture, he “doesn’t want to lose a war on his watch.”

Emphasis mine. Translation: Obama loathes the military, what it stands for, and its core purpose. Oh, but he doesn’t want to lose a war. Ha. He would have no better liberal bona fides than pulling out of Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya to embolden the likes of bin Laden, who, by the way, figured he could win a protracted war against us after watching Clinton abandon the mission in Somalia–a humanitarian mission initially–after the Mogadishu fiasco.
 
Cynical me wonders if this is what Michelle and Jill’s magical military tour is really all about, i.e. “supporting military families” through the transition to civilian life. Won’t it be grand not to have to worry about deployments? Just apply for that unemployment super-hero cape instead!More via Politico:

“Considerable cuts, beyond even the $400 billion-over-12-year target that President Obama announced earlier this month, will require a fundamental rethinking of the military’s role, something that Gates was unwilling to do,” said Christopher Preble, director of foreign policy studies for the libertarian Cato Institute. “It remains to be seen whether Panetta will tackle this challenge, or whether he will defer to others within the administration.”

As if there’s any question whether he will be an Obama hack or not. Pogues.

Bear in mind the military already faces cuts of 47,000 troopies.

 

 
 

Birtherpalooza PLUS It happened! I agreed with something the President said!

Ohmygoodness, it must be a signal of the end.

After releasing his “cannot be attained” because “the state never releases it” birth certificate, Obama called The Donald a “carnival barker.”  Heh. I wish it would drive the Democrat donor back to his weird reality series and out of any discussion of running for the GOP nomination.

Ed Morrissey:

Whatever credibility Trump had just dissipated this morning. He won in the same sense that Charlie Sheen is #winning! by getting canned and then embarrassing himself on a national tour.

Exactly. Let Obama embrace “winning” a la Sheen after he’s kicked out of office rather than vote for a combover boob who makes a mockery of common sense.

Related: Waterloo for Birthers

Funny: Obama’s long form certificate has its own twitter account! Jim Hoft recognizes the legitimacy:

In case you were wondering… The ObamaLongFormBC is following Bill Ayers, TelePrompter Obama, Communist Party USA and Malcolm X.
It must be legit.

Bonus: Ryan mumurings? Ryan-Bachmann. Ryan-Rubio. Ryan-make-my-conservative-heart-flutter. A plus: seniors are on board the Ryan plan.

Coincidence

Ah, gas prices. Why won’t we experience a rapid price decline mirroring the five-year chart above?

I don't fill up my own car, but I feel your pain even though I'm at fault!

Will Collier explains:

See that big peak in the middle? That was the last oil spike, in the summer of 2008. Notice how the price hit a high point, then fell off a cliff afterwards?

The day corresponding to that peak, an all-time high of $145.16/barrel, was July 14, 2008. By some strange coincidence, that was the very same day then-President George W. Bush lifted, by executive order, a federal ban on offshore oil drilling.

Bush’s order was, of course, immediately dismissed by the “experts.” Reuters waved away the action as “a largely symbolic move unlikely to have any short-term impact on high gasoline costs.” Barack Obama’s campaign lectured that if “offshore drilling would provide short-term relief at the pump or a long-term strategy for energy independence, it would be worthy of our consideration, regardless of the risks. But most experts, even within the Bush administration, concede it would do neither.”

The movement left was even more dismissive. ClimateProgress.org blasted The Washington Post for failing to headline their story about the order “Offshore Drilling Raises Oil Prices.” In response to Bush’s assertion that additional offshore extraction could equal current U.S. production in 10 years, they editorialized: “Yes, and monkeys could fly out of my butt” (emphasis in original).

There was just one problem: reality. Even though, as critics were eager to point out, any additional American drilling was years in the future, oil prices immediately went into free-fall. By Friday, July 18, the price of a barrel of crude had dropped to $128.94, a 12% decrease. A month later, on August 14, the price had fallen to $115.05. In spectacular fashion, Bush’s academic and media critics were proven seriously wrong.

Reality. Our Hopenchange reality includes a President who will starve us off oil in any way possible:

Shell Oil Company has announced it must scrap efforts to drill for oil this summer in the Arctic Ocean off the northern coast of Alaska. The decision comes following a ruling by the EPA’s Environmental Appeals Board to withhold critical air permits. The move has angered some in Congress and triggered a flurry of legislation aimed at stripping the EPA of its oil drilling oversight.

Shell has spent five years and nearly $4 billion dollars on plans to explore for oil in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas. The leases alone cost $2.2 billion. Shell Vice President Pete Slaiby says obtaining similar air permits for a drilling operation in the Gulf of Mexico would take about 45 days. He’s especially frustrated over the appeal board’s suggestion that the Arctic drill would somehow be hazardous for the people who live in the area. “We think the issues were really not major,” Slaiby said, “and clearly not impactful for the communities we work in.”

The closest village to where Shell proposed to drill is Kaktovik, Alaska. It is one of the most remote places in the United States. According to the latest census, the population is 245 and nearly all of the residents are Alaska natives. The village, which is 1 square mile, sits right along the shores of the Beaufort Sea, 70 miles away from the proposed off-shore drill site.

The EPA’s appeals board ruled that Shell had not taken into consideration emissions from an ice-breaking vessel when calculating overall greenhouse gas emissions from the project. Environmental groups were thrilled by the ruling.

I’m sure. As Professor Jacobson points out, this ruling makes three avenues of energy production the Obami have shut down.

Let’s all pause while President Tone-Deaf searches in vain for those evil speculators. What happens when none are found?

Related: Pundette, “Obamaflation.”

Good news from the border: mission complete!

Oh, it's a surprise!

No, they can’t catch smugglers of humans, but they can sieze those pesky chocolate eggs! Mark Steyn on his hazardous trip across the border with kids in tow:

I am looking this bright Easter morn at a Department of Homeland Security “Custody Receipt for Seized Property and Evidence”. Late last night, crossing the Quebec/Vermont border, my children had two boxes of “Kinder Eggs” (“Est. Dom. Value $7.50″) confiscated by Customs & Border Protection.

A joke? Nope.

Don’t worry, it’s for their own safety. I had no idea that the United States is the only nation on the planet (well, okay, excepting North Korea and Saudi Arabia and one or two others) to ban Kinder Eggs. According to the CBP:

Kinder Chocolate Eggs are hollow milk chocolate eggs about the size of a large hen’s egg usually packaged in a colorful foil wrapper. They are a popular treat and collector’s item during holiday periods in various countries around the world, including those in Europe, South America and even Canada. A toy within the egg is contained in an oval-shaped plastic capsule. The toy requires assembly and each egg contains a different toy. Many of the toys that have been tested by the Consumer Product Safety Commission in the past were determined to present a choking hazard for young children.

And yet oddly enough generations of European and Latin American children remain unchoked. Gotta love that “even Canada”, by the way: Is that an implied threat that Kinder Egg consumption is incompatible with participation in NORAD or membership of NAFTA?

The Food and Drug Administration has issued an import alert for Kinder Eggs, because they are a confectionery product with a non-nutritive object imbedded in it. As in years past, CBP, the Food and Drug Administration and CPSC work in close collaboration to ensure the safety of imported goods by examining, sampling and testing products that may present such import safety hazards. Last year, CBP officers discovered more than 25,000 of these banned chocolate eggs. More than 2,000 separate seizures were made of this product.

Let’s see – CBP, FDA, CPSC. I’m impressed it takes a mere three agencies from the vast alphabet soup of federal regulation to keep us safe from the menace of confectionery products with non-nutritive embeds.

As Janet Napolitano would say, the system worked. I hope America’s chocolate soldiers are enjoying their seized eggs this Easter.

Bonus prediction: What’s the betting that the first jihadist to weaponize a Kinder Egg makes it on to the plane?

PS My kids asked the CBP seizure squad if they could eat the chocolate in front of the border guards while the border guards held on to the toys to prevent any choking hazard – and then, having safely consumed the chocolate, take the toys home as a separate item. This request was denied. Could have been worse. Could have been a $300 fine, plus a $250 fee for seized-egg storage.

PPS The real choking hazard is the vise-like grip of government.

No lie.

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