Monday, September 19, 2011

Cruising the Web

Jonathan Tobin explains why the Republicans should not be mourning the loss of the type of Republican represented by Chuck Percy. The GOP doesn't need an anti-Israel senator. It's bad enough that we have Ron Paul's form of anti-Israel slant.

Andrew McCarthy explains the criminal fraud behind the whole Solyndra story.

Ezra Klein is all worried that Obama isn't FDR, but Hoover. Klein is terrified that a Republican will win in 2012 and the economy will improve all on its own or due to those wonderful Obama policies. But the GOP will get the all the credit and create a Republican-voting coalition that would last as long as the New Deal coalition after FDR garnered (undeserved) credit for defeating the Depression. Heh, rather like Bill Clinton got credit for the economic boom of the 1990s when he didn't really deserve the credit and the recession that George H.W. Bush had endured was already ending before Clinton took office.

The Republicans are facing all sorts of rebellions from states who don't want to sit back and accept the party's calendar giving, for not good reason, priority to Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina.

Here's an anecdote of Thomas Jefferson's dishonest approach to his alma mater, William and Mary, that I hadn't heard of before. Jefferson got a loan from the college's endowment of about a fifth of the school's endowment and never paid it back, yet he bad-mouthed the college at every opportunity and blocked their desire to move to Richmond because he feared that would give too much competition to his beloved University of Virginia in Charlottesville.

Stephen Moore contrasts the promises
that Obama has made earlier and those he's making now. So many of his previous promises have been revealed to have been empty rhetoric. Just using a roll of Moore's quotes would make a great campaign ad. He can be convicted out of his own mouth. Here's just a taste:
Mr. Obama says he wants to make America less dependent on foreign oil, but this week he called again for raising taxes on domestic oil and gas production. He said last year that he believes America is "running out of places to drill" even though in the last five years new discoveries of oil and natural gas have occurred in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, North Dakota, Texas, Montana and Colorado—causing a near doubling in U.S. recoverable reserves.

Mr. Obama said in his speech on Thursday that health-care costs are a major contributor to the debt and need to be reined in. He neglected to mention what voters surely remember, which is that last year Mr. Obama signed a health-care law that adds at least 30 million more Americans to Medicaid—the program Mr. Obama now says is the problem. During the debate over ObamaCare the White House insisted that the fees in the plan for not purchasing health insurance were not a tax. But arguing before the courts on the constitutionality of the law, the White House now says these are taxes. Which is it?
Steven Hayward has been reading Hayek and pulls out an interesting quote concerning the liberal contradiction: "namely, that freedom of thought should be absolute, but freedom of action (i.e., economic freedom) should be tightly regulated by the state."
Because we are more aware that our advances in the intellectual sphere often spring from the unforeseen and undesigned, we tend to overstress the importance of freedom in this field and to ignore the importance of the freedom of doing things. But the freedom of research and belief and the freedom of speech and discussion, the importance of which is widely understood, are significant only in the last stage of the process in which new truths are discovered. To extol the value of intellectual liberty at the expense of the value of the liberty of doing things would be like treating the crowning part of an edifice as the whole. We have new ideas to discuss, different views to adjust, because those ideas and views arise from the efforts of individuals in ever new circumstances, who avail themselves in their concrete tasks of the new tools and forms of action they have learned.
That's an interesting point there that I'd never heard expressed that way.

Mark Steyn covers
Obama's campaign for a job bill that "won't 'create" any jobs," and "will be paid for with money we don't have." Deserving special derision is the President's continuing love affair with the ever elusive "green jobs."
On Thursday night, the president told a Democratic fundraiser in Washington that the Pass My Jobs Bill bill would create 1.9 million new jobs. What kind of jobs are created by this kind of magical thinking? Well, they’re “green jobs” — and, if we know anything about “green jobs,” it’s that they take a lot of green. German taxpayers subsidize “green jobs” in their wind-power industry to the tune of a quarter of a million dollars per worker per year: $250,000 per “green job” would pay for a lot of real jobs, even in the European Union. Last year, it was revealed that the Spanish government paid $800,000 for every “green job” on a solar-panel assembly line. I had assumed carelessly that this must be a world record in terms of taxpayer subsidy per fraudulent “green job.” But it turns out those cheapskate Spaniards with their lousy nickel-and-dime “green jobs” subsidy just weren’t thinking big. The Obama administration’s $38.6 billion “clean technology” program was supposed to “create or save” 65,000 jobs. Half the money has been spent — $17.2 billion — and we have 3,545 jobs to show for it. That works out to an impressive $4,851,904.09 per “green job.” A world record! Take that, you loser Spaniards! U.S.A.! U.S.A.!

How interesting. Obama was an early investor in LightSquared, the company for which the White House pressured a U.S. general to alter his testimony before Congress. Unlike other presidents, as Ed Morrissey reminds us, Obama didn't put his investments into a blind trust because he wanted the public to have access to his financial information. Even if Obama no longer owns stock in them, the Huffington Post reports that so do some other major Democratic campaign contributors and Obama supporters. And it was an Obama fundraiser whom Obama made chairman of the FCC whigh granted LightSquared the special waiver. This story could beat out Solyndra as the more damaging of the Obama crony capitalism scandals.

David Yergin reminds us of all the times that experts have forecast that we're at the point of "peak oil" and all the times they've been wrong.

John Hawkins describes five ways
that the Internet is ruining our culture.