Thursday, October 30, 2014

Cruising the Web

Boy, how times change. The generation that fell so deeply in love with Barack Obama is now over their romance with him.
More than half – 51 percent – of America’s millennials who say they will “definitely be voting” in November prefer a Republican-run Congress, with only 47 percent favoring Democrat control, according to a Harvard Institute of Politics poll.

This marks a significant departure from the institute’s findings before the 2010 midterm elections, when America’s 18-29 year olds who were definitely voting favored Democrats 55 percent to 43 percent....

What’s more, the poll found that only 43 percent of millennials approve of President Obama’s job performance, while 53 percent disapprove. It is his second-lowest rating in the institute’s polls since he took office. The figures are only slightly worse for Obama among those who will “definitely be voting”: 42 percent approve, 56 percent disapprove.

The results showed a stark divide in presidential approval along racial and ethnic lines. Only three in 10 young whites approve of the president’s performance, while nearly eight in 10 young blacks approve. Hispanic youth approval fell to 49 percent, down from 60 percent just six months ago.
This generation has come of age during a great slowdown of the economy. Every year I see my students go off to college full of dreams for whichever career they've been thinking about. Some do find the jobs they're hoping for. But some come back and seem almost ashamed that they haven't found the sort of job they hoped for or any job at all. And often it is some of my brightest students who are having trouble finding jobs in the careers they've been dreaming about. So much for "hope and change." There have been changes, but not the ones they hoped for.

Stephen Hayes refutes the trope the media have latched on to - that this is an election "about nothing." Au contraire. There are two different ideologies for voters to choose from. They just don't seem to be choosing the one that the MSM prefers.
Not only is this election not about nothing, it is being fought over exactly the kinds of things that ought to determine our elections.

It’s about the size and scope of government. It’s about the rule of law. It’s about the security of the citizenry. It’s about competence. It’s about integrity. It’s about honor.

It’s about a government that makes promises to those who have defended the country and then fails those veterans, again and again and again. It’s about a president who offers soothing reassurances on his sweeping health care reforms and shrugs his shoulders when consumers learn those assurances were fraudulent. It’s about government websites that cost billions but don’t function and about “smart power” that isn’t very smart. It’s about an administration that cares more about ending wars than winning them, and that claims to have decimated an enemy one day only to find that that enemy is still prosecuting its war against us the next. It’s about shifting red lines and failed resets. It’s about a president who ignores restrictions on his power when they don’t suit him and who unilaterally rewrites laws that inconvenience him. It’s about a powerful federal agency that targets citizens because of their political beliefs and a White House that claims ignorance of what its agents are up to because government is too “vast.” In sum, this is an election about a president who promised to restore faith in government and by every measure has done the opposite.

As even Barack Obama acknowledges, the upcoming election is about his policies and those elected officials who have supported them. It’s about an electorate determined to hold someone responsible for the policy failures that have defined this administration and the scandals that have consumed it—even if many in the fourth estate will not.
Maybe the reason some in the media are arguing that this is an election about nothing is because it's really an election about Barack Obama. And the verdict isn't favorable. And it's not a problem that the President can fix by shuffling out some of his staff and cabinet members.

Sean Trende examines the theory of an "emerging Democratic majority" and concludes what I thought when I first heard about it. American history is full of elections when one party seemed to be so dominant that the other party would wither away. And then just a few elections later, the situation reverses. That is the beauty of our system - it leads to some sort of leavening between the parties so no party achieves a permanent majority. Once the party achieves dominance, they start going too far in reading the mandate from the American people and eventually the voters want to try someone else. That is why the Reagan years didn't lead to a permanent Republican majority and the Clinton and Obama years certainly didn't achieve partisan dominance.

William Voegeli remembers when liberal writers thought that conservatives can't govern because they don't trust government. And now Voegeli argues that liberals have trouble governing. They make excuses for the failures of the Obama administration that the problem was that they needed to work harder at implementing their policies.
How is it possible that grownups, ostensibly dedicated to the proposition
that government can solve problems, must learn such an elementary lesson
over and over? One explanation for this anomaly is that liberals are,
regarding any social ill, adamant that government do something, but
unconcerned about whether it accomplishes anything.

Noble goals remain noble whether they’re attained or not. And liberals can easily demonstrate their own nobility by demanding new programs and bigger budgets, as opposed to the hard work of making sure existing programs are effective, or are abandoned if they can’t be made effective. If, as Georges Clemenceau said, war is too important to be entrusted to soldiers, the Obama administration may end up demonstrating that social problems are too important to be remedied by liberals.

Timothy writes on "Kay Hagan's corporatism and cronyism" and how it has enriched both her campaign treasury and her family members. It's not a pretty picture.

The repellent Democratic congressman, Alan Grayson, is refusing to support his estranged wife and children who are now living on food stamps. He argues that she wasn't legally divorced from her first husband so their marriage wasn't legitimate. But those are still his children. Isn't he legally required to contribute to their support? After all, he's the 17th riches member of Congress.

This isn't felicitous news about Scott Walker's Democratic opponent in Wisconsin, Mary Burke. The man who supervised her when she worked for her father's company, Trek Bicycle, is now saying that she was fired for her incompetence. And it was her own brother, John Burke, who had to argue for her to be let go.
According to Albers, it was John Burke who first sounded the alarm that the European division was struggling mightily.

“Her performance in Europe was not good,” he says. “We were losing a lot of money for us at the time. I don’t remember the amount, but it was considered significant based on where we were [as a company] at that particular point in time.”

“And also, we were encountering personnel/people problems over there. The people were threatening to leave the company. Many of them were.”

Primarily, Albers contends, because of the managerial style of their supervisor, Mary Burke.

“Her way of managing was kind of a ‘her way or the highway’ kind of approach to things,” Albers explains, adding that her subordinates “felt that she wouldn’t listen to them and was just imposing things on them that didn’t make sense.”

“So because of all that—which had gone on for a while, obviously—John Burke went to his father basically saying, ‘We need to make a change over here.’ Obviously, being a family situation, this was extremely sensitive and very difficult to pursue. So Dick Burke came to me and said, ‘Before anything is done here, would you go over there and give me your thoughts on what the situation is like?’”

Albers flew to Trek’s European headquarters and quickly discovered that John Burke wasn’t exaggerating.
And now she wants to run the state of Wisconsin. This is not a great job recommendation.

How false accusations of domestic abuse ruined one NBA player's chance at a career.

CBS has no comment on Sharyl Attkisson's accusations about how they protected Obama from negative stories about his administration. Typical.
James Taranto ponders the inconsistencies of the administration's position on quarantining servicemen and women who are returning from West Africa all the while pressuring states and offering up presidential photo ops to resist mandatory quarantining returning civilians including medical personnel who have worked with Ebola patients. The administration can't explain why there should be such completely different policies.
Let us suggest two practical distinctions, either or both of which may explain the disjunction in policy. The first is that forestalling the military quarantine order would have required Obama to overrule a recommendation of the Joint Chiefs of Staff—that is to say, to make a decision. Pressuring the governors, by contrast, involves only behind-the-scenes kibitzing and public bloviation.

The second is snobbery. Recall that quote from Nurse Hickox’s lawyer: “She’s a very good person.” She and others like her, according to the president, are doing God’s work, and—in pointed if inaccurate contrast to military servicemen—are “experts.” The logic would go something like this: You can’t quarantine her. She’s one of us.

When the going gets tough, all the Democrats have left is despicable race-baiting.