Ah, a deal: does it even matter?

After reading Mark Steyn at his most scathing, no:

The Democrat model of governance is to spend $4 trillion while only collecting $2 trillion, borrowing the rest from tomorrow. Instead of “printing money,” we’re printing credit cards and pre-approving our unborn grandchildren. To facilitate this proposition, Washington created its own form of fantasy accounting: “baseline budgeting,” under which growth-in-government is factored in to federal bookkeeping as a permanent feature of life. As Arthur Herman of the American Enterprise Institute pointed out this week, under present rules, if the government were to announce a spending freeze — that’s to say, no increases, no cuts, everything just stays exactly the same — the Congressional Budget Office would score it as a $9 trillion savings. In real-world terms, there are no “savings,” and there’s certainly no $9 trillion. In fact, there isn’t one thin dime. But nevertheless, that’s how it would be measured at the CBO.

Like others, I have a hard time fathoming “trillion.” Steyn points out $9 trillion eclipses the combined GDP of Japan and Germany. Still having trouble? Try this. It adds a certain dimension to the debate, no? If we’re incapable of honestly cutting money from our budget now, then we’re headed down the tubes in no uncertain order unless we kick the charlatans out of DC. A goodly number of Republicans included. For-ev-er.

So what lies ahead? Steyn paints a rather dismal picture. Read the rest.

Related: Friday Limbaugh, “You can be proud, Conservatives: Tea Party puts country over party.”

Cross-posted at Pundit & Pundette.

“I like to say that for the black community, nothing will change until we learn to love our children more than we love the Democratic party”

So argues “Unlikely Supporter” Sonnie Johnson, a 30 year-old wife and mom.

Why so “unlikely” according to ABC News?

Oh, yeah, she’s black. Whoopsie, your liberal slip is showing:

The 30-year-old African-American mother and wife is featured in “The Undefeated” as one of the many people Palin captivated when John McCain thrust her onto the national stage as his vice presidential running mate in 2008. In Pella, Iowa today for the premiere of the film, Johnson said she latched on to Palin when the former Alaska governor took the stage at the Republican National Convention.

“We were watching it on TV and my daughter was like, ‘A girl can be president?,’” Johnson recalled. “And I said, ‘Yes, baby, girls can do anything.’ That was the moment — I saw that look in my daughter’s eye, that anything in possible. The next week, I went to my very first political event, and that was to see Sarah Palin. John McCain and Sarah Palin.”

Johnson has become increasingly involved in the tea party since then, speaking at tea party events around her native Virginia. She’ll give the keynote address at an event held by the Charlottesville, VA. tea party on the Fourth of July with her young daughter by her side.

Amazing, isn’t it, how our children can inspire pursuits never imagined?

The Lonely Conservative chimes in:

Good for her, for looking at the issues, rather than the party. Bad on ABC News for finding it so “unlikely” that Americans whose skin happens to be dark would support Sarah Palin, or other Tea Party candidates. But hey, at least they didn’t mock or belittle her as so many liberals do to those who step outside of their stereotypical boxes. And in all fairness, at least they told her story. I’m sure those who aren’t mocking Mrs. Johnson would rather just ignore her.

Ignore her, malign her. But Sonnie Johnson and the millions of other mothers–black, white and in-between–are a forced to behold.

UPDATE: linked as a Recommended Read by Pundette. Thanks!

Palin to GOP: “Fight like a girl.”

Fabulousness.

Katrina Trinko at NRO:

In a speech in Madison, Wis. today Sarah Palin talked like a candidate, praising Gov. Scott Walker and blasting congressional Republicans for the budgetdeal.

“After some politics as usual and accounting gimmicks, we find out … it’s not even $38 billion dollars. It’s less than $1 billion dollars in real cuts.,” said Palin.

“That is not courage. That’s capitulation.”

Stating that conservatives would back the GOP if they fought, Palin criticized Republicans for failing to bring about change. “We didn’t elect you just to rearrange the deck chairs on a sinking Titanic,” Palin said. “We didn’t elect you just to stand back and watch Obama redistribute those deck chairs.”

“Stand up, GOP, and fight,” Palin continued. “Maybe I should ask some of the Badger women’s hockey team, those champions, maybe I should ask them if we should be suggesting to GOP leaders that they need to learn to fight like a girl.”

Wow.

James Pethokoukis:

But all it took was one powerful, pugnacious and presidential speech — just 15 minutes long — for Palin to again make herself completely relevant to the current political and policy battles raging across America.

Pethoukoukis–among others–see this for what it … might be:

That line about fighting like a girl, as well as her “Game on!” declaration will surely reignite speculation about presidential plans. And understandably so. Frontrunner Mitt Romney continues to fashion and refashion a saleable explanation for his Obamacare-esque Massachusetts health plan. And while Tim Pawlenty scored a coup with the hiring of hotshot campaign manager Nick Ayers, his embryonic candidacy is still a work in progress. There’s enough voter unease that another Mitch Daniels boomlet seems to be in progress.

Will she run? Even many of those close to Team Palin have no idea. Palin herself may not have made a decision and may not feel she needs to until the autumn. But as it stands, she arguably represents the purest expression out there of Tea Party passion and free-market populist rejection of Washington’s bipartisan crony capitalism. If she ran, her high-wattage appearance in Madison shows just how dangerous her candidacy would be to a field of solid but stolid opponents.

I must commit to memory “solid but stolid.” It’s much nicer than I would’ve been.

Of mice and (straw) men

So the petulant President lied. Stooped to new lows, even, in deliberate falsehoods and personal attacks on Paul Ryan.

From the WSJ:

Did someone move the 2012 election to June 1? We ask because President Obama’s extraordinary response to Paul Ryan’s budget yesterday—with its blistering partisanship and multiple distortions—was the kind Presidents usually outsource to some junior lieutenant. Mr. Obama’s fundamentally political document would have been unusual even for a Vice President in the fervor of a campaign.

The immediate political goal was to inoculate the White House from criticism that it is not serious about the fiscal crisis, after ignoring its own deficit commission last year and tossing off a $3.73 trillion budget in February that increased spending amid a record deficit of $1.65 trillion. Mr. Obama was chased to George Washington University yesterday because Mr. Ryan and the Republicans outflanked him on fiscal discipline and are now setting the national political agenda.

Mr. Obama did not deign to propose an alternative to rival Mr. Ryan’s plan, even as he categorically rejected all its reform ideas, repeatedly vilifying them as essentially un-American. “Their vision is less about reducing the deficit than it is about changing the basic social compact in America,” he said, supposedly pitting “children with autism or Down’s syndrome” against “every millionaire and billionaire in our society.” The President was not attempting to join the debate Mr. Ryan has started, but to close it off just as it begins and banish House GOP ideas to political Siberia.

Mr. Obama then packaged his poison in the rhetoric of bipartisanship—which “starts,” he said, “by being honest about what’s causing our deficit.” The speech he chose to deliver was dishonest even by modern political standards.

Hope and Change: dishonest, blistering partisanship and multiple distortions, and vilification.

Pundette on our “temperamentally unfit” POTUS:

Not only is our president unable or unwilling to see the cliff edge approaching; he vilifies anyone who does, as he steps on the gas. Interesting that he deliberately invited Ryan to attend the speech, giving his dishonest attack on him and his plan a personal, vicious, aspect. I didn’t think it was possible, but my opinion of Barack Obama has just dropped even lower. This is a small man. And instead of being elevated by the office, he’s shrinking, and dragging the office and the country down with him.

At this point, the only thing left to say is 2012.

Via Ed Morrissey, 6 in 10 voters want government cut. Let’s ensure that the majority sees the forest for the trees and understands that the President will never deliver fiscal restraint. It’s not in his genes.

How? Thomas Sowell has an idea to cut government and run-around sob-story liberals at the same time:

Trying to reduce the deficit by cutting spending runs into an old familiar counterattack. There will be all kinds of claims by politicians and sad stories in the media about how these cuts will cause the poor to go hungry, the sick to be left to die, etc.

My plan would start by cutting off all government transfer payments to billionaires. Many, if not most, people are probably unaware that the government is handing out the taxpayers’ money to billionaires. But agricultural subsidies go to a number of billionaires. Very little goes to the ordinary farmer.

Big corporations also get big bucks from the government, not only in agricultural subsidies but also in the name of “green” policies, in the name of “alternative energy” policies, and in the name of whatever else will rationalize shoveling the taxpayers’ money out the door to whomever the administration designates — for its own political reasons.

The usual political counterattacks against spending cuts will not work against this new kind of spending-cut approach. How many heart-rending stories can the media run about billionaires who have lost their handouts from the taxpayers? How many tears will be shed if General Motors gets dumped off the gravy train?

It would also be eye-opening to many people to discover how much government money is going into subsidizing all sorts of things that have nothing to do with helping “the poor” or protecting the public. This would include government-subsidized insurance for posh and pricey coastal resorts that are located too dangerously close to the ocean for a private insurance company to risk insuring them.

Sowell points out that cuts like these could come quickly sans a partisan fight a la NPR and Planned Parenthood while delivering more substantial savings. I agree. As much as I want to see both defunded, I want real cuts, not some trifle tossed my way in appeasement by RINOs who can’t be trusted to deliver the goods. More Steyn (because all you can do at this point is laugh):

The news that the $61 billion 38.5 billion 14 billion historic 2011 budget cut actually cuts $352 million from the 2011 budget is in its way kind of impressive. As Congressman Huelskamp pointed out, that’s about what the Government of the United States borrows in two hours. The joke re the original $38.5 billion deal was that, in the time it took to negotiate it, we added as much again in new debt (we’re borrowing about $4 billion a day). We didn’t know the half of it: Never mind negotiating, in the time it takes to type up the bill, we’ve borrowed as much as it “saves”. By the time this thing’s through, the cost of the Secret Service detail lugging the Obamaprompter to whichever grade school he announces the final definitive historic budget “cuts” at will be three times as much as any actual savings.

Our President is unable and unwilling to get the job done. It’s up to us to hold Congress to the fire to ensure we don’t head over the fiscal cliff.

Sunday funnies

Do any of you hear Mark Steyn when reading his essays? I do. Take this, for example:

I started the engine. It was a manual, and, being distracted by the flying curses and jiggling knockers, I stalled the thing. And for a moment I had a horrible vision of the two chavs (in Britspeak) falling on me, glassing me, driving their stiletto heels into my skull, and making off with the car, leaving me to turn up on page 17 of the local paper under the headline “Has-Been Writer Found Dead In Two-Girl Special Gone Tragically Wrong.” I cast around for a copper, but as is traditional none were in sight. Obviously they don’t show up for public drunkenness or aggravated toplessness, but the ladies’ homophobic remarks would surely have led to an ASBO (Anti-Social Behavior Order) for Section Five hate speech and six months of sensitivity training. As I drove off, one of them banged on the hood while the other yelled, “You’re everything that’s wrong with this country!” Which seemed a bit unfair considering I was only on British soil for a mere 72 hours.

Scathing social commentary wrapped up all pretty in a hilarious anecdote with jiggling bits!

British historian Paul Johnson on humor:

His concern with the human dimension of history is reflected as well in his attitude toward humor, the subject of another recent book, “Humorists.” “The older I get,” he tells me, “the more important I think it is to stress jokes.” Which is another reason he loves America. “One of the great contributions that America has made to civilization,” he deadpans, “is the one-liner.” The one-liner, he says, was “invented, or at any rate brought to the forefront, by Benjamin Franklin.” Mark Twain’s were the “greatest of all.”

And then there was Ronald Reagan. “Mr. Reagan had thousands of one-liners.” Here a grin spreads across Mr. Johnson’s face: “That’s what made him a great president.”

Jokes, he argues, were a vital communication tool for President Reagan “because he could illustrate points with them.” Mr. Johnson adopts a remarkable vocal impression of America’s 40th president and delivers an example: “You know, he said, ‘I’m not too worried about the deficit. It’s big enough to take care of itself.’” Recovering from his own laughter, he adds: “Of course, that’s an excellent one-liner, but it’s also a perfectly valid economic point.” Then his expression grows serious again and he concludes: “You don’t get that from Obama. He talks in paragraphs.”

Funny and true. Johnson is the subject of the WSJ Weekend Interview. The man is a gem. An octogenarian Mark Steyn, if you will. Another taste:

Pessimists, he points out, have been predicting America’s decline “since the 18th century.” But whenever things are looking bad, America “suddenly produces these wonderful things—like the tea party movement. That’s cheered me up no end. Because it’s done more for women in politics than anything else—all the feminists? Nuts! It’s brought a lot of very clever and quite young women into mainstream politics and got them elected. A very good little movement, that. I like it.” Then he deepens his voice for effect and adds: “And I like that lady—Sarah Palin. She’s great. I like the cut of her jib.”

The former governor of Alaska, he says, “is in the good tradition of America, which this awful political correctness business goes against.” Plus: “She’s got courage. That’s very important in politics. You can have all the right ideas and the ability to express them. But if you haven’t got guts, if you haven’t got courage the way Margaret Thatcher had courage—and [Ronald] Reagan, come to think of it. Your last president had courage too—if you haven’t got courage, all the other virtues are no good at all. It’s the central virtue.”

Courage. Our current president lacks it, but that’s what you get when you vote for the dude who consistently voted “present.” Read the rest.

Dude: I would never, ever vote for a man wearing skinny jeans. Not that I’d vote for Mitt anyway. Run, syphilitic camel, run!

“The welfare state has done to black Americans what slavery couldn’t do. . . . And that is to destroy the black family”

So argues my idol, Walter Williams, in the WSJ Weekend Interview to launch his new autobiography, “Up from the Projects.”  A snippet:

“We lived in the Richard Allen housing projects” in Philadelphia, says Mr. Williams. “My father deserted us when I was three and my sister was two. But we were the only kids who didn’t have a mother and father in the house. These were poor black people and a few whites living in a housing project, and it was unusual not to have a mother and father in the house. Today, in the same projects, it would be rare to have a mother and father in the house.”

Even in the antebellum era, when slaves often weren’t permitted to wed, most black children lived with a biological mother and father. During Reconstruction and up until the 1940s, 75% to 85% of black children lived in two-parent families. Today, more than 70% of black children are born to single women. “The welfare state has done to black Americans what slavery couldn’t do, what Jim Crow couldn’t do, what the harshest racism couldn’t do,” Mr. Williams says. “And that is to destroy the black family.”

Or two:

But Walter Williams was a libertarian before it was cool. And like other prominent right-of-center blacks—Clarence Thomas, Thomas Sowell, Shelby Steele—his intellectual odyssey began on the political left.

“I was more than anything a radical,” says Mr. Williams. “I was more sympathetic to Malcolm X than Martin Luther King because Malcolm X was more of a radical who was willing to confront discrimination in ways that I thought it should be confronted, including perhaps the use of violence.

“But I really just wanted to be left alone. I thought some laws, like minimum-wage laws, helped poor people and poor black people and protected workers from exploitation. I thought they were a good thing until I was pressed by professors to look at the evidence.”

During his junior year at California State College in Los Angeles, Mr. Williams switched his major from sociology to economics after reading W.E.B. Du Bois’s “Black Reconstruction in America,” a Marxist take on the South’s transformation after the Civil War that will never be confused with “The Wealth of Nations.” Even so, the book taught him that “black people cannot make great progress until they understand the economic system, until they know something about economics.”

He earned his doctorate in 1972 from UCLA, which had one of the top economics departments in the country, and he says he “probably became a libertarian through exposure to tough-mined professors”—James Buchanan, Armen Alchian, Milton Friedman—”who encouraged me to think with my brain instead of my heart. I learned that you have to evaluate the effects of public policy as opposed to intentions.”

Bingo. And the effects of public policy over the last sixty-odd years has devastated families and our liberty. 

One of the reasons I love listening to Williams when he subs for Rush: his bracing honesty.  To wit:

“Racial discrimination is not the problem of black people that it used to be” in his youth, says Mr. Williams. “Today I doubt you could find any significant problem that blacks face that is caused by racial discrimination. The 70% illegitimacy rate is a devastating problem, but it doesn’t have a damn thing to do with racism. The fact that in some areas black people are huddled in their homes at night, sometimes serving meals on the floor so they don’t get hit by a stray bullet—that’s not because the Klan is riding through the neighborhood.”

Truth hurts sometimes, doesn’t it?  Read the rest.  It’s full of Williams at his best. 

Have I ever mentioned that I saw him once, exiting the library at GMU?  I was chatting with my husband via phone on my hike from the parking lot since I wouldn’t be home from my last class until long after he was in bed.  He was stuck in traffic. I was stuck in grad school.

“Ohmygoodness! That’s Walter Williams!” I whispered into the phone, awestruck to see one of my idols while on my way to hear more endless race/class/gender garbage spewed from the mouths of  sycophantic graduate students who never really knew what zeitgeist, hegemony, phallologocentrism of the patriarchy, or the difference of the différance meant because they sure as hell never made any sense when they spoke. 

“Go say hello,” replied my savvy husband who knew of my deep and abiding affection for the best econ professor this side of the Mississippi (three cheers if you can guess my other favorite econ professor. Hint: they’re friends.).

“I can’t chase him down! I … I … eeek!  He’s entitled to his privacy……  Ok! I will!”

And like that, he was gone.  It must be all those work-outs he talks about where the young ladies fawn over him at the gym.  He’s a flash.

H/t: Dan Mitchell.

Why my next born will be christened “Don Surber”

Because he rocks.  From today’s post, “I do not want civil discourse,” he explains:

For a decade, from the election of Bush 43 forward, the Left has lied and cheated as it tried to return to power. Al Gore made a mockery out of the American electoral system by being a spoilsport over Florida, which Bush indeed won by 537 votes. Dan Rather forged a document to try to derail Bush’s re-election. Twice Democrats stole U.S. senators from the Republicans. After voting to support the war to get by the 2002 election, many Democrats quickly soured on the war. The profane protests were cheered by liberals who misattributed “dissent is the highest form of patriotism”to Thomas Jefferson; the words belong to the late historian Howard Zinn.

Once in power, liberals were the opposite of gracious.

For two years now, I have been called ignorant, racist, angry and violent by the left. The very foul-mouthed protesters of Bush dare to now label my words as “hate speech.”

Last week, the left quickly blamed the right for the national tragedy of a shooting spree by a madman who never watched Fox News, never listened to Rush Limbaugh and likely did not know who Sarah Palin is.

Fortunately, the American public rejected out of hand that idiotic notion that the right was responsible.

Rather than apologize, the left wants to change the tone of the political debate.

The left suddenly wants civil discourse.

Bite me.

The left wants to play games of semantics.

Bite me.

The left wants us to be civil — after being so uncivil for a decade.

Bite me.

Are you smiling yet?  I am.  Rock on:

So screw you and your civil discourse.

I don’t want to hear it.

I have been screamed at for 10 years.

It’s my turn now. I am not going to scream back. But I refuse to allow anyone to dictate what I say or how I say it. I refuse to allow the same foul-mouthed, foul-spirited foul people who dumped on me to now try to tell me what I may or may not say.

My free speech matters more than the feelings of anyone on the left. You don’t like what I say? Tough.

I will not allow people to label my words Hate Speech or try to lecture me on civility. I saw the lefty signs. The left’s definition of civil discourse is surreal.

We have a terribly unfit president who has expanded government control beyond not only what is constitutional but what is healthy for our freedom.

Indeed, this call for civil discourse is itself a direct threat to my free speech.

So screw you.

RTR.  It is a thing of beauty.  In case you’ve forgotten what the left’s idea of civility looks like, Michelle Malkin has a refresher course.

UPDATE: linked as a featured blog at P&P. Thanks!

UPDATE 2: Pundette says I’m a permanent devotee.  I do believe I’m smitten.  Even if Surber has strange namesakes (see comments).

UPDATE 3: Adrienne jumps on the Surber bandwagon, too.  Thanks for the link!

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