Tuesday, July 26, 2011

One Hell of An Analogy for the Budget Debate

Courtesy of Henry Percy, excerpt from his article "The Budget Crisis Explained to a Nineteen Year Old."  Article found here at American Thinker.

Let's say you earn an even $100,000 per year, part of the 52% of Americans who pay taxes. You've got too much to qualify for food stamps or the Earned Income Tax Credit and other goodies, but you're not rich either, driving an old car, definitely no corporate jet waiting for you at the airport.

But wait, why are you driving an old car? Why not a BMW? You deserve it. And a Lexus for the missus? And a vacation in Hawaii? Cruise in Europe? You're wonderful, you deserve it all. Soon you're spending $150,000 per year. It's not hard, because you, not the bankers, set your own credit card limit.

After a couple years the missus gets nervous, says maybe, just maybe you should cut back. You're indignant: you have to have transportation, are you expected to drive an old clunker? And you need to relax; you'd be a nervous wreck without getaways to far-off places.

OK, you tell her, how about we cut back on our tips when we eat out? That'll save $10 per year. (This is the equivalent of eliminating the tax deduction for corporate jets, which was part of the Stimulus Bill and which Obama has hammered mercilessly, oh those fatcats in their private jets.)

The missus says that $10 is really, kinda, sorta insignificant compared to the $50,000 in new debt you're taking on every year. So at last you tell her you can embezzle $4,000 per year from your employer and cut your spending by $8,000, so you'll only slide $38,000 into the hole each year. You say all this with a great scowl, moaning about how hard it's going to be to reduce your standard of living so drastically. Then you tell her it was so much work calculating all those terrible cutbacks that you deserve a night out on the town to celebrate your newfound sobriety and prudence.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Political Trivia: How Many Times Must a Question Be Answered For Chris Matthews to Finally Understand?

Ten?  A hundred?  A thousand?!? 

You got me. It's a trick question. Unless Chris Matthews likes your answer, (that is, unless your answer jives with the Obama administration's talking points) he'll just never, ever get it.

Take this clip from his show. It's a fantastic example of what I'm talking about. Here's the gist, but watch if you have ten minutes, as seeing Matthews get absolutley destroyed is well worth the time invested.

Matthews: "What is the GOP plan to cut budgets in the House bill?"
GOP Rep Walsh: "There are $111 billion in non-defense discretionary spending cuts that will be determined through bi-partisan negotion."
Matthews: "Yeah, Congressman, but there are no cuts in the bill."
Walsh: "Umm, there are $111 billion worth of cuts."
Matthews: "But Congressman, can you just answer the question, please? Where are the spending cuts?"
Walsh: "Look, you moron, there are $111 billion in cuts outlined in the bill! Your president may send thrills up your leg with his rhetoric, but I take issue with the indisputable, reprehensible lie he has told the American people in efforts to scare them into accepting his spendthrift agenda!  80% of America supports a balanced budget amendment. Most states have to live with one, and all households do.  It's something the American people understand, why can't you?"
Matthews:  "Yeah, yeah, Congressman.  But lemme ask you this.  Where are the cuts?"

They say you can't fix stupid.  And if that's true, Chris Matthews is truly FUBAR.

William Sullivan

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

MSNBC Airhead Gets Owned

Hmmm... I guess MSNBC doesn't teach their info-bimbos the art of the open-ended question. Perhaps they should.

Duke University double major with highest honors in political science and economics? ~$60K
Law degree from University of Alabama? ~$80K
Intellectually vapid eye-candy questioning your credentials on national television? Priceless.

--William Sullivan

Friday, July 15, 2011

An Exemplary Appreciation of God and Life

Yesterday, the American Thinker blog published some commentary of mine regarding Rachel Maddow and her defense of late-term abortions. In the comment section, a poor woman who has apparently endured a late-term abortion for medical reasons scolded my article and applauded Maddow for supporting late-term abortions, which she claims are "never made callously or flippantly."

When writing social commentary, one has a tendency to use broad brushstrokes, and in some cases generalizations come across as all-or-nothing statements. I never meant to imply that late-term abortions should never be permissible in situations where the mother's life might be jeopardized or when the child might endure prolonged suffering. She is right- many late-term abortions are done for medical reasons, and in those situations a late-term abortion would, and should be, permissible by law. And in those cases, a late-term abortion would not be morally abhorrent.

But then, I read the response of a commenter by the handle of Tomstiles69. I do not believe I have ever read anything more touching or more exemplary of the wonder that is the human spirit. Please read the comments below.

kcmb 17 hours ago

"But where early-term abortions might allow for a moral gray area, it is clear that anyone with a conscience would abhor the practice of late-term abortions, not just Christian theocrats."

I have to disagree with this. I think there's a lot of misinformation and misunderstanding about the vast majority of what some call "late term abortions." The truth is that a large number of these later abortions are done for medical reasons--either due to serious complications with the mother's health or due to serious fetal anomalies. Walk a mile in the shoes of a parent who has just been told their baby will die shortly after birth. The decision to abort in the 2nd or 3rd trimester is never an easy one, and it is never one made callously or flippantly. It's a decision made to prevent needless suffering. I applaud Rachel Maddow for going to bat for those of us who've had to endure a "late term abortion."

tomstine69 11 hours ago

It is NOT true that "a large number of these abortions are done for medical reasons. The vast majority of late term abortions are elective - social reasons. Our Natalia died 4 weeks after birth - blind, one nostril, couldn't eat without a tube, and basically no brain. We were told early on of her condition and fate but when abortion was suggested it did not even occur to us to consider it. That time in our lives was difficult with many questions and sadness. We went from resenting this imperfect damaged life that God had allowed into our lives to knowing at her graveside funeral 4 weeks after she was born that God had given us his best. That statement might seems preposterous to someone who hasn't walked a mile in the shoes of a parent who has just been told their baby will die shortly after birth and still choose to love and protect that precious life for the short time that they are priveleged to have the that honor.

Whether or not you believe in God, what Tom describes here exemplifies the very best of humanity- the very best that we can ever be. A love and understanding that these words fall miles short of conveying.

William Sullivan

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Who's the Maximalist Here, Jay?

Last week, when asked if the president would embrace Senator McConnell’s invitation to Capitol Hill to discuss the budget impasse, White House spokesman Jay Carney was direct in giving his opinion of the Senator’s offer. “What the Senator invited the President to do was to hear Senate Republicans restate their maximalist position. We know what that position is. And he also invited him to hear… what would not pass. That's not a conversation worth having. What we need to have is a conversation about what will pass. ”

His use of the word “maximalist” immediately creates a glaring “pot and kettle” moment for the White House spokesman. Three more times during this interview, Carney applied the term “maximalist” to describe Republican opposition to the president. The suggestion of this redundant reminder, of course, is that while the president is willing to make concessions and compromise, Republicans are bullheadedly “drawing lines in the sand.” Yet what is our gracious president actually offering his opposition? He demands that Republicans defy their constituents and be willing to embrace tax hikes and trillions of dollars in new debt over the coming decade- and if they do not, he won’t even talk to them. He’ll just plug his ears, and run off to Pennsylvania to attend a fundraiser like he did last week.

It's hard to think of a more "maximalist" position than that. So the implication that the president’s position is conducive to compromise while Republicans are just stubborn as mules must be the result of a deceptive political campaign to vilify opposition.

And as we’ve come to expect of the Obama administration, that’s exactly what it is.

William Sullivan