Peace In Our Time

Neville Chamberlain waving his agreement with Hitler

Neville Chamberlain waving his agreement with Hitler

New York Times Obama groupie Maureen Dowd believes the President has a “superbrain” which produces “amazing insights,” and she predicts that his post-presidential memoir will be ” the most brilliant political memoir outside of Ulysses Grant.” Memo to Modo: Why rank Obama’s as yet unwritten White House masterpiece below that of the Dead White Male Grant?

The real question is not whether he has a super or less-than-super brain, but whether he possesses the knowledge you’d normally expect of an expensively educated (Columbia and Harvard Law School) public figure.

A few have reported on a phrase contained in Obama’s inaugural address that any reasonably knowledgeable person, let alone one with a super brain, would have avoided like the plague:

…America will remain the anchor of strong alliances in every corner of the globe. And we will renew those institutions that extend our capacity to manage crisis abroad. For no one has a greater stake in a peaceful world than its most powerful nation. We will support democracy from Asia to Africa, from the Americas to the Middle East, because our interests and our conscience compel us to act on behalf of those who long for freedom. And we must be a source of hope to the poor, the sick, the marginalized, the victims of prejudice.

Not out of mere charity, but because peace in our time [my emphasis] requires the constant advance of those principles that our common creed describes; tolerance and opportunity, human dignity and justice…

Who made the phrase “peace in our time” infamous?: British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, who on returning from Munich in 1938 where he had negotiated with Hitler the so-called Munich Agreement which gave Germany the Sudetenland in return for Hitler’s pledge to stop threatening to invade Germany’s neighbors, waved a piece of paper and said, “I have returned from Germany with peace in our time.” Less than a year later, Germany invaded Poland and World War II began. Chamberlain’s policy was (approvingly back then) called “appeasement.” And for most of my lifetime Chamberlain, the Munich Agreement and appeasement were considered hard lessons of history, warnings that must be heeded in order to avoid catastrophic future wars.

Nowadays, some consider Obama’s foreign policy of “engagement” to be nothing more than appeasement by another name. But few believe that Obama and his speech writers purposely used the rhetorical embodiment of pre-World War II appeasement. No, it seems clear that neither the speech writers nor the super brain himself understood the ironic meaning of “peace in our time.”

Now if George Bush had said that…

Colin Powell: Political Hack and Hypocrite

One thing you have to say about Colin Powell: He’s an extremely “impressive” public figure. Handsome, magnetic, and glib (not to mention “eloquent” – a quality attributed most often nowadays to his fellow African American Barack Obama), he’s the guy they go to when the Obama administration wants to anoint someone whose character has been questioned; if he’s good enough for the General… As Joe Biden might say about Colin Powell as he actually did say about his now boss, “I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that’s a storybook, man.” Come to think of it: Wasn’t Powell the first “mainstream African American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy”? Joe must have forgotten.

I bring this up in reference to Powell’s very impressive and articulate, if not eloquent, performance on last Sunday’s Meet the Press. I used to be one of those folks, like, say, Meet the Press host David Gregory, who found Powell’s magnetism (and presumed military-based reputation for honor and integrity) irresistible. That is, until the Joe Wilson-Valerie Plame scandal in which George Bush was brow-beaten by the media and the Democrats to appoint a “special counsel” (Patrick Fitzgerald) to investigate who leaked Plame’s CIA employment to journalist Robert Novak. (No such brow beating has occurred as a result of the Benghazi attack in which 4 Americans died, but I digress.)

Although leaking Plame’s CIA employment was not a crime, Fitzgerald pretended he did not know the identity of the leaker, Powell sidekick Richard Armitage, despite the fact that he was told it was Armitage from the get-go. Eventually he found a politically acceptable scapegoat named “Scooter” Libby who worked for the arch-villain Dick Cheney. Fitzgerald was, not suprisingly, able to convince a jury of 12 Washington, D.C. Democrats that Libby was guilty of a crime for contradicting the contradictory testimony of the late Democratic TV “personality” Tim Russert.

What’s Colin Powell have to do with this? Powell knew that Armitage was the leaker from the beginning but refused to prevent the ruin of Scooter Libby’s life by revealing the truth. Powell’s excuse was that Fitzgerald had ordered him to remain silent while Fitzgerald looked for someone politically acceptable to take the fall.

My conclusion: If Colin Powell were really a man of honor and integrity, as he obviously expects everyone to believe, he would have told Patrick Fitzgerald to go fuck himself and brought the witch hunt to an abrupt end. Is it a crime to disobey a “special counsel”? And more importantly, would Fitzgerald have had the guts to even contemplate prosecuting the great African American war hero Colin Powell?

But despite my current estimation of Powell as just another political hack, I must say I found myself falling under his spell during his Meet the Press appearance, that is, until he started in about “a dark vein of intolerance in some parts of the [Republican] party,” after having excused Defense Secretary nominee Chuck Hagel’s remarks about the “Jewish lobby” and how he wasn’t when he was in the Senate an “Israeli senator.”

Wall Street Journal columnist Brett Stephens describes it well by quoting and commenting on Powell’s remarks:

…”There’s also a dark vein of intolerance in some parts of the party. What do I mean by that? I mean by that is they still sort of look down on minorities. How can I evidence that? When I see a former governor [Alaska's Sarah Palin] say that the president is shuckin’ and jivin,’ that’s a racial-era slave term. When I see another former governor [New Hampshire's John Sununu] say after the president’s first debate when he didn’t do well, he said he was lazy. Now it may not mean anything to most Americans but to those of us who are African-Americans, the second word is shiftless and then there’s a third word that goes along with it.”

So let’s get this straight. Mr. Powell holds it “disgraceful” to allege anti-Semitism of politicians who invidiously use the phrase “the Jewish lobby.” But he has no qualms about accusing Mr. Sununu—along whose side he worked during the George H.W. Bush administration—of all-but whispering the infamous N-word when he called Mr. Obama’s first debate performance “lazy.”

It’s hard to decide whether Mr. Powell is using a double standard hypocritically or inadvertently. I’ll assume the latter, since he seems to have missed the reason why Mr. Hagel’s nomination to be secretary of defense has run into so much opposition.

Consider the following hypothetical sentence: “The African-American lobby intimidates a lot of people up here.” Would this pass Mr. Powell’s smell test?

Or this: “I’m a United States senator, not a Kenyan senator.” Such a statement would be considered as so weird and unwonted that no amount of spinning (let’s say it was uttered in the context of a discussion of U.S. policy toward Africa) would have saved the person making it from immediate disqualification.

Now maybe someone can explain how that’s materially different from Mr. Hagel’s suggestion that “The Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people up here” and “I’m a United States senator, not an Israeli senator.”

One of the arguments I’ve come across recently is that there’s nothing unwarranted about using the word “intimidate” and that it’s something all lobbies do. Remarkably, however, a Google search yields zero results for the phrases “the farm lobby intimidates,” “the African-American lobby intimidates,” or “the Hispanic lobby intimidates.” Only the Jewish lobby does that, apparently…

Earlier in his column, Stephens notes that Powell may have questioned, Hagel-style, the loyalty of Jewish political appointees:

…according to Bob Woodward, Mr. Powell accused Douglas Feith, one of the highest-ranking Jewish officials in the Bush administration and the son of a Holocaust survivor, of running a “Gestapo office” out of the Pentagon. Mr. Powell later apologized personally to Mr. Feith for what he acknowledged was a “despicable characterization.”

Or the time when, according to George Packer in his book “The Assassins’ Gate,” Mr. Powell leveled another ugly charge at Mr. Feith, this time in his final Oval Office meeting with George W. Bush. “The Defense Department had too much power in shaping foreign policy, [Powell] argued, and when Bush asked for an example, Powell offered not Rumsfeld, the secretary who had mastered him bureaucratically, not Wolfowitz, the point man on Iraq, but the department’s number three official, Douglas Feith, whom Powell called a card-carrying member of the Likud Party.”…

And he concludes:

…In the meantime, maybe Mr. Powell could show that he’s as sensitive to the whiff of anti-Semitism as he is to the whiff of racism. If George Packer’s description of Mr. Powell’s last meeting with President Bush is inaccurate, he should publicly disavow it. If it’s accurate, he should publicly apologize for it. Nobody questions where Mr. Powell’s loyalties lie. If he has called the loyalties of other patriotic American public servants into question, that would be, to use his word, disgraceful.

An Armed Camp: The White House

US President Barack Obama departs by Marine One helicopter at the South Lawn of the White House
I watched a couple of the Sunday talk shows which were almost exclusively devoted to the tarring and feathering of the National Rifle Association (NRA). Among liberals, apparently, the NRA is even more contemptible than Al Qaeda and spokesman Wayne Lapierre even more odious than, say, Jerry Sandusky or Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the mastermind of the 9/11 attack. After all KSM gets a few points for not being your typical white guy, the group from which, according to liberals, all evil springs.

Unlike al Qaeda, the NRA is the organizational embodiment of angry white maleness as Maureen Dowd might put it.

The two Grand Inquisitors yesterday were Meet the Press’s David Gregory and Face the Nation’s Bob Schieffer. The latter seemed to be having a stroke during his interrogation of NRA president David Keene. His blood-shot eyes welled up and his hands trembled. Both Gregory and Schieffer could not contain their palpable contempt for the NRA and its leaders.

Contempt aside, I did learn two new things from the interrogations: The National Education Association rejects the idea of armed security guards in schools (turning schools into “armed camps”) and the Washington studios of NBC does not have an armed security detail.

As to the first assertion, I doubt that any five year old would be traumatized by the presence of an armed security guard (or even two) at their school. And I must say that I do not believe that the NBC studios are “gun-free zones.”

What I suspect is that David Gregory urged the armed guys (and gals) at the front desk to take a coffee break when NRA vice president Lapierre entered the building. I know my suspicions relegate me to the netherworld occupied by conspiracy minded birthers and truthers, but given that NBC News’s on air personalities are among the most annoying people in the national media, I cannot believe that they would not demand and be provided with armed security.

There must be millions of sane, law abiding citizens who cannot help but lose it at the sight and sound of, for example, Chris Matthews or Rachel Maddow. Even Brian Williams and Andrea Mitchell have been known to cause seizures in otherwise healthy adults.

I happened to be in Washington D.C. earlier in the day yesterday. Upon entering the front door of the National Gallery, the first persons I encountered were large, polite security guards who demanded to inspect bags while armed with what looked to me like semi-automatic pistols (I didn’t ask about the “capacity” of their ammunition magazines). They were stationed there presumably to protect the many masterpieces and art fans therein. And I encountered another armed guard at a smaller art gallery with few if any “priceless” masterpieces and a small number of patrons. I am sure that none of the Obama voters enjoying the art were the least bit offended by the presence of burly guards packing heat; in fact, they may have even, like me, been more than happy that the armed guards were there.

Speaking of armed camps, I then strolled over to the White House where there were more guards than tourists. One fellow caught my eye, for he was strolling the White House lawn behind the gates dressed in a full swat team outfit, and he was conspicuously brandishing a genuine “assault rifle,” that is, a fully automatic weapon which can be legally possessed only by military and police personnel.

The prominent display of deadly force was clearly meant to deter any “bad guy or guys” from even thinking about committing a violent act anywhere near the president’s home and office. And the Obamas were at that moment enjoying the beaches of Hawaii thousands of miles away…surrounded by lots of armed security folks, I presume.

But back to the talk shows. The question on every liberal’s lips was: Why would any sane, law abiding person want or need an “assault rifle” with large capacity ammo clips? The answer is quite simple: to protect yourself (and possibly others) from an insane criminal coming at you with just such a weapon.

Playing The Dog Whistle

Thus Spake Obama
Did you see Obama’s news conference yesterday? If not, you missed an extraordinary performance – Obama doing what he does best: imputing malevolent motives to those who disagree with him.

The ostensible purpose of the “presser” was to announce the appointment of Crazy Joe Biden to lead a commission that will quickly, we are told, get to the bottom of the Connecticut atrocity. (An unstated purpose was to deflect attention from the just released internal State Department report on the Benghazi fiasco which predictably found that “mistakes were made,” but not made by any identifiable human beings named Barack or Hillary.)

After Crazy Joe left the stage, Obama took questions which revealed the real purpose of the news conference – to flay the Republicans for not completely surrendering to his demands for higher taxes and more spending in return for vague promises to “cut” spending at some far, distant point in the way, way-off future when everyone now alive will be long dead.

But the jaw-dropping part was when Reverend Obama drew a moral equivalence between the Republicans’ oh-so-slight resistance to his fiscal cliff demands and the Sandy Hook shootings:

After what we’ve gone through over the past several months, a devastating hurricane and now one of the worse tragedies in our memory, the country deserves folks to be willing to compromise for the greater good…

Am I going too far in thinking that before this is over, Obama and the whack jobs at MSNBC will be accusing the Republicans of complicity in the murder of women and children in Connecticut? It isn’t like he hasn’t gone there before; remember Mitt Romney, the murderer of the laid off steel worker’s wife?

Memo to David Axelrod: The murderer lived in a million plus dollar house which means his family is a part of the upper 2% who have not as yet paid their fair share. And doesn’t his father have a big job at General Electric? Bad luck there since the CEO of GE is a big Obama supporter and chairman of the president’s outside panel of economic advisers. And wasn’t there some controversy over GE’s failure to pay their fair share? Never mind.

Bottom line: Forget the GE part and go with the “if the rich paid more taxes, they wouldn’t have the disposable income to spend on such frippery as assault rifles” angle.

But I digress. In addition to the invocation of mass murder in the context of the fiscal cliff debate, Obama also, to my ear, played the race card yesterday, or as the wacky MSNBC guys and gals would say, “blew the dog whistle” by suggesting
that GOP legislators are having less difficulty saying “yes” to his fiscal cliff plan than saying “yes” to him.

So it’s not his plan to continue to tax and spend even more than we do now that bothers the Republicans. No, Obama vigorously implies, it’s that these white racists cannot abide caving in to a black man.

So there you have it: The Republicans, by refusing to abjectly surrender to Obama’s tax and spending demands are, for now at least, insensitive to the Newtown victims and all decent Americans who mourn their loss. And they’re racists to boot.

For Obama, it’s all in a good day’s work.

The Grand Besmircher

Yesterday, Obama urged critics of UN ambassador Susan Rice’s misleading Benghazi “full Ginsburg” on the Sunday talk shows to leave her alone and dared them to “go after” him instead.

Is there any button this guy won’t push? How thrilling to watch Big Brother Barry defend the honor of a distressed damsel (and she’s black too!).

All demagoguery aside, I agree with Obama: They should go after him, and the reporters might have immediately obliged by asking him why he sent Doctor Rice on all five Sunday talk shows to spin misleading talking points when, as Obama claimed yesterday, Rice “had nothing to do with Benghazi.” And if I were Rice, I would be asking him the same thing.

John McCain and Lindsay Graham have been assigned the role of White Republican Bullies in this melodrama, but as I recall, they were only responding to questions about whether Rice could be confirmed as a possible Secretary of State after her full Ginsburg. If her reputation has been “besmirched,” as Obama correctly claims, the grand besmircher is Obama.

You might remember that Colin Powell dutifully appeared before the UN Security Council to make the case for the presence of WMD in Iraq, and when no WMD were found after the war, his reputation took a bit of a hit, which I am sure still infuriates Powell and is probably the reason for his inexcusable behavior in the Scooter Libby case and his later endorsement of Obama. But at least the Bush administration believed there were such weapons in Iraq as did the CIA and every significant intelligence agency in the world, the loony claims of WMD truthers notwithstanding.

To send Rice out to blanket the airwaves with what were at best sketchy talking points and at worst bold faced lies was a reckless, risky maneuver almost guaranteed to injure if not destroy her credibility and harm her career.

So by all means, the politicians and press should “go after” Obama, just like the media went after Bush.

But I am not holding my breath.

It’s Good To Be The King

Pundit Bill Kristol has taken some heat from Republicans this week for suggesting that they ought to accede to Obama’s desire to raise taxes on “the rich.”

I agree with Kristol.

For one thing, it would promote political hygiene. Who wants to see Obama firing up Air Force One to tour the country as he’s done for most of the last 4 years (surrounded by the now familiar adoring union moonies) preaching about how the GOP wants to screw the “middle class” to benefit “millionaires and billionaires”? I am sure there are people out there who cannot get enough of that, but they have to be in the minority…right?

Yes, I know, snarling about fat cats and the rich is what Obama does best (Frankly, it’s the only thing he does. Like all revolutionists, he really isn’t any good at mere governing.). Sure, there is the possibility that Obama will simply raise the stakes by demanding higher taxes than the expiration of the Bush rate would produce.

Still, it’s better to allow Obama to do his worst. The media has already spun the election as a stinging rejection of conservatism and a smashing triumph for massive government, regardless of the actual results. Soon the politicized perception will become the reality, and just about everybody will believe that what Obama wants is what “the American People” want.

Kristol noted that half of “the rich” are Hollywood liberals anyway, so why not give “The Boss,” George Clooney and Anna Wintour what they say they want – higher taxes. I know, of course, that The Boss and company won’t really pay the higher taxes; their army of tax attorneys wouldn’t stand for it. But hey, hypocrisy isn’t a crime.

I say, give Obama what he says he wants on taxes and move on to the real issue – spending, particularly entitlement spending. Again, I know that the Democrats will then employ the usual bait and switch tactics they’ve been using for years against presidents like Reagan and Bush, the Elder: Get the Republicans to raise taxes in return for a “promise” to cut spending; pocket the higher taxes and then fughetabout the spending cuts.

I know the Democrats have succeeded with this strategy in the past, but I think they may be unable to use it this time when it has become so obvious that, as Mark Steyn wrote, “There’s nothin’ holding the joint up.”

When the higher taxes on George Clooney and Jeffrey Katzenberg don’t yield anything, the Democrats will have to come up with something else, which will have to be much higher taxes on the middle class (See Europe).

So let’s stand aside and clear the way for Obama to take us down the road to ruin. He has already shown that he really doesn’t care about no stinkin’ Congress anyway (See his unilateral trashing of the Welfare Law’s work rules and his implementing of the “Dream Act” in spite of Congress’s rejection).

What’s to be gained by drawing the drama out. The sooner Reality becomes apparent, the sooner we can remove the rubble and start to rebuild.

So, Why Did Asians Vote For Obama?

The other day I wrote about the perplexing fact that more than 70% of Asian-Americans voted for Obama. I can understand (somewhat) the mindless century-long Jewish attachment to the Democratic Party (the Democratic Party is the American Jewish religion), but Asians?

I noted that Asians are the prime victims of the liberal Democratic policiy of racial preferences in college and professional school admissions. Quotas are used to keep down the number of Asians as they were used against Jews decades ago.

Yesterday, I came across a New York Times report on a law suit challenging admissions policy for elite New York City high schools:

The complaint, filed with the United States Education Department, seeks to have the policy found in violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and to change admissions procedures “to something that is nondiscriminatory and fair to all students,” said Damon T. Hewitt, a lawyer with the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, one of the groups that filed the complaint.

At issue is the Specialized High School Admissions Test, which is the sole criterion for admission to eight specialized schools that, even in the view of city officials, have been troubled by racial demographics that are out of balance [my emphasis].

Although 70 percent of the city’s public school students are black and Hispanic, a far smaller percentage have scored high enough to receive offers from one of the schools. According to the complaint, 733 of the 12,525 black and Hispanic students who took the exam were offered seats this year. For whites, 1,253 of the 4,101 test takers were offered seats. Of 7,119 Asian students who took the test, 2,490 were offered seats. At Stuyvesant High School, the most sought-after school, 19 blacks were offered seats in a freshman class of 967.

“I refuse to believe there are only 19 brilliant African-Americans in the city; it simply cannot be the case,” Mr. Hewitt said. “It is a shameful practice and it must be changed.”

The test-only rule has existed for decades, as have complaints about its effect on minority enrollment. In May 1971, after officials began thinking about adding other criteria for admission, protests from many parents, mostly white, persuaded the State Legislature to enshrine the rule in state law.

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said at a news conference on Thursday that the schools were “designed for the best and the brightest” and that he saw no need to change the admissions policy or state law.

“I think that Stuyvesant and these other schools are as fair as fair can be,” Mr. Bloomberg said. “There’s nothing subjective about this. You pass the test, you get the highest score, you get into the school — no matter what your ethnicity, no matter what your economic background is. That’s been the tradition in these schools since they were founded, and it’s going to continue to be.”

A bill introduced in the Assembly last session sought to give the city power over admissions to the schools. But it was not brought to a vote, said Michael Whyland, a spokesman for the Assembly speaker, Sheldon Silver. “We’ll look at the issue and study it,” Mr. Whyland said. “Of course we want to make sure everyone has equal access to all our schools.”

A city Education Department spokeswoman, Deidrea Miller, said the department “has launched several initiatives to improve diversity.” Those include a free test-preparation course aimed at poor students…

One student at Bronx Science spoke the truth which will probably land him in sensitivity training hell:

“African-American and Hispanic parents don’t always seek out extra help for their kids and their kids don’t score as high,” said Manjit Singh, a senior. “But it’s the same test for everyone, so how can it be discriminatory? If you can’t handle the test, you can’t handle the school, and you’re taking up someone else’s spot.”

What a strange idea: “You get the highest score, you get into the school, no matter… your ethnicity…[or] economic background.” Let’s hope Bloomberg doesn’t go wobbly like he has on the police “stop and frisk” policy that has mainly kept New York, since the 90′s, from descending into a state of nature .

The stereotype about Asians is they care deeply about their children’s success, particularly in education. So again: Why are Asians voting for Obama and the Democrats?

New Boss, Same As The Old Boss

Obama and his “veto pen” surrounded by adoring party hacks.

I don’t like to make predictions because I hate being proven wrong. But I can’t help but climb out on a limb and predict that we are about to witness a process that will lead to the country’s plunge off the “fiscal cliff.”

If you saw Obama’s first post-election public event yesterday, you should be afraid. Billed as a speech about the above mentioned crisis, the setting was clearly a campaign rally with an audience of Democratic Party hacks complete with the usual “diverse” group of adoring party zombies providing the backdrop.

True, Obama avoided the poisonous scorched-earth rhetoric he has been excreting over the past 4 years, but it’s hard not to conclude that he’s teeing the Republicans up to take the fall.

Expect the same strategy and tactics he employed to kill a bargain before the election to be deployed now: He will keep demanding more in tax increases until he reaches the point where the Republicans are faced with an offer they cannot accept. Obama will immediately begin touring the country in campaign mode, blaming the Republicans for throwing the country into the recession everyone has predicted will happen in the absence of an agreement.

In other words, he has already started campaigning for the 2014 midterm election of a Democratic House and a filibuster proof Senate. This is what Paul Krugman urged Obama to do in his most recent column. Was it Stalin who said, “You have to break a few eggs to make an omelette”?

Obama is not a consensus politician like Bill Clinton; he’s a revolutionist. He really does want to obliterate the opposition and transform the country into a European-style, massive government welfare state. And he has the psycho-pathological confidence in his ability to mobilize his Red Guard style supporters to get the job done. Who among his supporters cares if unemployment skyrockets as long as the Chinese subsidized checks keep coming? With more unemployment, he’ll just get more government dependent supporters. And he knows the press will run interference for him.

Speaking of Bill Clinton, I was wondering why CIA Director David Petraeus had to resign merely because he had an extra-marital affair. The reason, we are told, is that someone in such a sensitive national security job may not lead a double life because it exposes him to blackmail which threatens national security.

But isn’t the same true of the President?! Clinton’s mouthpieces argued that he shouldn’t have to resign or be impeached because, after all, the Lewinsky affair was only about sex. I don’t remember any of them bringing up national security and blackmail. Is the Presidency less “sensitive” than CIA Director? I’m only asking.

I considered Clinton to be a lowlife, but I prefer his political pragmatism (remember “triangulation”?) to Obama’s ruthless Alinskyism.

The Best Is Yet To Come

Here’s a sensible election postmortem from the always sensible Mark Steyn in an interview with Hugh Hewitt:

…[Hewitt] But it brings us, the last thing I want to ask you about, eight out of ten millennials, 18-29 year olds who are not white, so you’ve got Asian-American, Latinos, black, eight out of ten voted for Barack Obama. That is a terrible demographic, Mark Steyn.

[Steyn]: Yeah, and I would say what Barack Obama did was quite brilliant. I’ve lived in places where politics is tribal. I’ve lived in Belfast, and in the province of Quebec, you know, in both places you basically have secessionists and loyalists, and people vote tribally. The present Democratic coalition is one based on tribal identity. You vote because you’re a woman, you vote your lady parts as Obama advised them. If you’re black, you vote based on your ethnicity. If you’re lesbian, you vote based on your orientation. The Republican Party asked people to vote as citizens, to say that that is your most important identity. You might be lesbian, you might be Hispanic or whatever, but you’re a citizen, and you vote as a citizen. And I’m very wary of just going down the route of identity group pandering, because I think it’s ultimately destructive of cohesive, it’s the biggest argument in favor of big government, because you say well, we’ve got all these competing identity groups, we’ve got a bunch of Muslims on one side of the street, and then a bunch of gay guys on the other side of the street, and only big government can mediate the competing interest of the fire breathing mullahs and the hedonist gays. And I think you damage the polity going down that path…

And I’ve been wondering how California does it; that is, how do they keep the lights on (at least most of the time) and pay their bills despite being totally broke? I know how the federal government does it – by borrowing from China and printing money, but California, unlike Washington which hasn’t had a budget in years, must “balance” its budget.

Today’s lead editorial in the Wall Street Journal explains how and lists some of bills coming due:

…Lawmakers have been borrowing and deferring debts for the past decade merely to close their annual deficits, and those bills will soon come due. The legislature has raided $4.3 billion from special funds and deferred $10 billion in constitutionally required payments to schools.

The state has also borrowed $10 billion from Uncle Sam to pay for jobless benefits and $313 million this year from the state disability insurance trust fund for debt service on those federal loans. Democrats have proposed replenishing the state’s barren unemployment insurance trust fund by raising payroll taxes on employers. Expect that to happen now.

Then there’s the more than $200 billion in unfunded liabilities the state has accrued for worker retirement benefits, which this year cost taxpayers $6.5 billion. The California State Teachers’ Retirement System says it needs an additional $3.5 billion and $10 billion annually for the next 30 years to amortize its debt.

The state has $73 billion in outstanding bonds for capital projects and $33 billion in voter-authorized bonds that the state hasn’t sold in part because it can’t afford higher debt payments. Unissued bonds include $9.5 billion for a bullet train, which will require $50 billion to $90 billion more to complete. Sacramento will also need more money to support an $11 billion bond to retrofit the state’s water system, which is planned for the 2014 ballot.

So Californians are now the highest taxed people in the country (at least those who pay or can’t avoid taxes), and as Obama said Tuesday night, “The best [read: worst] is yet to come,” now that the Democrats have a legislative “super majority.”


The Pander Race To Nowhere

They Who Must Be Served

The election is over and the postmortem season has begun. The conventional wisdom is: The Republican Party is doomed unless it panders to the groups the Obama campaign put together to eke out a victory.

The coalition is the young, hip graduates of our left-wing educational system, Hispanics who want us to ignore immigration law, women who believe the taxpayers ought to provide them with free abortions and contraceptives, and other folks who think the system is rigged against them because it doesn’t redistribute to them enough of the fruits of other people’s labor.

When it comes to saying how the Republicans are supposed to attract such voters, the purveyors of conventional wisdom go silent except for the immigration issue, about which many Republicans believe their party should try to out-pander the Democrats.

In other words, let’s reward illegal behavior to win votes; never mind that rewarding illegality always produces more of it.

I think the Republicans should ignore the savants’ advice to go gooey on these issues because, in reality, the Democrats will not be able to satisfy these groups either.The government will not be able to find jobs for Ivy League graduates in women’s studies, nor will it be able to provide work and benefits for the unskilled illegal immigrants who are in this country now, let alone the unskilled immigrants that new liberalized legislation would encourage to come here.

Earth to those celebrating the Obama victory: There is no money to satisfy your demands, raising taxes on “the rich” isn’t going to provide anywhere near enough of it, and the Democrats aren’t going to be able to keep their promises.

Events, not demographics, will determine the political future. Does any rational person believe that Obama’s Iranian policy will stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons and will prevent an Israeli attack within the next 6 months? Does anyone really believe that Obama will agree to reform Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security in any meaningful way? What will the deficit and debt be next year or the year after or 4 years from now? $18 trillion, $20 trillion?

As Harvard’s Niall Ferguson said a couple of months ago: The choice is between whether we deal with the entitlements or the entitlements deal with us. It now looks like the latter.

Back to the postmortem. I am puzzled by the large number of Asian voters who went for Obama. What has the Democratic Party done for Asians, most of whom are self-employed professionals like physicians and small business people?

More importantly, Asians are the prime victims of the racial discrimination that results from racial quotas in colleges and professional schools. Asians must have much higher grades and test scores than blacks and Hispanics to be admitted to the elite schools. Which party considers racial preference a sacred cow?

And while I know it is upsetting to hear this, no group envies and despises Asians more for their great success in this country than their fellow Democrats in the black community.

In the end, the Democratic Party will go out of business because they will, in the words of Margaret Thatcher, run out of other people’s money to spend on their supporters. It won’t be the wars or Bush or the fundamentalists who wage war on women that get us. No, it will be the entitlements and the absurdly extravagant public employee union benefits and all the other promises the Democrats have made that they haven’t a clue how to keep.


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