Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Cruising the Web

John Steele Gordon has a very interesting column about the history of the income tax. He explains how we ended up with both a corporate and a personal income tax. It wasn't planned for and tax lawyers and accountants have been able to game the system ever since.

Apparently, pizza moguls lean conservative. Daily Beast examines the records. They've experienced the effects of government regulations first hand. And that is enough to turn them into Republicans.

Here's the chilling story of the sterilization program that endured in Charlotte, N.C. into the 1970s. The N. C. Eugenics Board that sterilized of over 500 poor women from Mecklenburg County was led, interestingly enough, by Charles Kuralt's father. I guess that all his travels on the road to find interesting stories, he just never found the one in his own family.

Peter Wehner describes the President's projection efforts to portray himself as the opposite of who he really is. And it was all on display in Obama's obnoxious speech to the CBC telling them to "take off your bedroom slippers" and "press on" as if he were a modern-day MLK.
I have written before about Obama’s deep, almost desperate, need to portray himself as the opposite of what he is, to conceive of himself in a way that is at odds with reality. We have seen it in all sorts of areas, including claiming himself to be a voice of civility, portraying himself as a champion of bi-partisanship, lecturing others about profligate spending, and saying he is the only responsible “adult” in Washington. Now we see this habit in a new arena – this time, the president as Obama the Stoic, a man so committed to “pressing on” for the cause of social justice he just doesn’t have time to feel sorry for himself. Indeed, he has now decided to sermonize to others not to complain, not to grumble, and to “stop crying.”

This is akin to John Edwards​ hosting a weekend seminar on the importance of marital fidelity.

If there has been a president in my lifetime who has felt more sorry for himself – who has laid the blame for his failures on more people (George W. Bush, the Congressional GOP, the Tea Party, conservative talk radio hosts, millionaires and billionaires) and more things (ATMs, Japanese tsunamis, the Arab Spring, Fox News, Wall Street, et cetera) – I can’t think of who that might be. As the wheels on the Obama presidency come off, as his record of ineptness becomes more indisputable, Obama is becoming more intemperate, more aggrieved, more prickly, and more detached from reality.

What we are seeing is a president attempt to create, almost out of whole cloth, his own character, his own narrative, his own truth. That might work in an F. Scott Fitzgerald novel; it works less well in an American presidential campaign.

To watch a young child indulge in heroic fantasies of himself can be charming. To watch a president indulge in heroic fantasies of himself is disquieting.
No wonder Maxine Waters was offended and complained that he'd never speak to his gay and Jewish supporters that way. And amazingly enough, she's right.

Howard Kurtz reports
that Roger Ailes is dialing back the conservatism just a notch at Fox News.

Despite Paul Krugman's claim that Paul Ryan's "budget would kill people," Ryan has become popular by "pushing the unpopular." If only more politicians would embrace that path.

Obama's plan to make it illegal
for employers to not hire someone because that person had been unemployed long-term is simply a gift to trial lawyers. Does he really think that this sort of law would improve the prospects for employment?

Fred Thompson doesn't really recommend
getting into the presidential race late. Candidates need some off-Broadway experience before they appear on the big stage.

The Obama administration has decided not to appeal the decision of the three-judge panel of the 11th Circuit that struck down the individual mandate in Obamacare to the full Circuit. That virtually guarantees that the Court will get the case in this term and will decide it before the 2012 election. Good.

William McGurn explains all that Jennifer Granholm did wrong to further the economic distress in Michigan. And the policies that failed Michigan are just the policies that Obama would like to continue for America.

Oh darn. Jon Huntsman might not break the 2% barrier in the polls in order to make the next CNN debate. What would those debates be without his moral preening and unfunny jokes.

But this is funny - the best line on the whole Chris Christie indecision 2011 watch comes from Jim Geraghty's Morning Jolt column.
This was just handed to me: Brett Favre wants the will-he-or-won't-he speculation about Chris Christie to stop.