Tuesday wrap

Obama: Earns mistrust from the sensible and gratitude from patriots, offends seniors.

Mismanagement: New Progs drip with contempt, union muscle on tape, in the tank for ObamaCare, shame on Pelosi-Hoyer, Dr. Evil pays up, SEIU thugs amp up, leftwing argues for term limits, ACORN-SEIU's Rathke-Jefferson disgrace.

International: Obama assuages LatAm leftist despots.

Sensible skeptics mistrust Obama-Dems ... If the administration wanted to generate economic growth today, it’s difficult to see how throwing money at the Department of Education in 2011 would accomplish that. However, if the goal was to expand the federal bureaucracy long after the economy had recovered, this approach would make sense. Americans should decide for themselves. All this should make Americans particularly cautious when the administration claims it can “fix” health care. “By acting now, we have the chance to slow health-care costs in a way that doesn’t slash benefits or reduce care,” wrote Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of health and human services, in The Washington Post on Aug. 4. How does the administration intend to accomplish these lofty goals? Sebelius isn’t saying. As she herself noted at a town hall meeting in Pennsylvania, the Senate’s health care bill isn’t even written yet. Americans are being asked to buy a pig-in-a-poke, again. It’s only sensible we’re skeptical this time. (cnsnews.com)

Patriots owe Obama a debt of gratitude ... No, no! I really have NOT lost my mind. Bear with me. Barack Obama may just be the best thing to happen in a generation for a number of reasons. In the many years I have been watching American politics – from a distance – he has done more to engage, awaken the American people than any other president. (familysecuritymatters.org)

Obama offends seniors, earns distrust ... In the last few days, the Obama Administration publicly encouraged citizens to turn on one another and report opponents of health care legislation directly to the White House. The president himself damns his enumerated powers when saying of the legislative process he "doesn't want to hear any talking" about his intentions, and demands that citizens and legislators who differ with him to "get out of the way." President Obama is unable or unwilling to grasp that the United States is not a direct democracy, and that his election in November was not a unilateral grant of all-encompassing power. Likewise, Members of Congress who have been greeted by raucous citizens hurl accusations against them or refuse to even attempt defending a government takeover of the health care industry on the merits. Protestors are accused of disseminating misinformation about the bill, though perhaps Members of Congress and the administration are simply astonished by a rapidly established trend that is just as quickly crystallizing into fact: The citizens know more about the contents of the bill than those who promote it and are to vote upon it. It is highly offensive. (americanthinker.com)

New Progs drip with contempt for America ... The frightened Democratic reaction to robust debate - "the conversation" that "progressives" are so eager to have with those who disagree with them - recycles the insults and epithets last heard in confrontations over civil rights and the war in Vietnam. The protests are "organized," the work of "outside agitators." Martin Luther King, by Democratic reckoning, was an outside agitator. The marches against the Vietnam war were marvels of organization, true, but ... umm, well ... that was different. Mr. Obama should recognize outside agitation when he sees it, given his career in outside agitation in Chicago. He was taught by Saul Alinsky, "the father of American radicalism," that the left-wing strategy for achieving an unpopular goal is to "pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it." We're almost there. The Democrats are trying to impose rationed government health care (the target) quickly, before the public wakes up from entertaining distractions (the freeze), making villains of all who oppose (personalizing it) and creating a chaotic controversy (polarizing it) that can be effectively exploited. Mr. Obama once taught Saul Alinsky workshops in Chicago, so he was ready when he thought he heard opportunity knocking. (washingtontimes.com)

Bonus links:
Summary of Saul Alinsky's 'Rules for Radicals'
• More Saul Alinsky stories: here
'Rules for Radicals' at amazon.com

Unions Muscle Up to Confront Healthcare Protesters ... Organized labor is gearing up to make a big push for President Obama’s “public option” healthcare plan, while also claiming to be the victim in melees that sent one town hall protester to the hospital late last week. Union leaders appear to have decided that their best defense, following charges that town hall protesters were roughed up, is to levy those same allegations against the opponents of reform. “Attacking a staffer? Harassing a pregnant woman? All in a day’s work for the opposition to healthcare reform,” one post on the Web site of the Service Employees International Union stated. The union blamed conservative town hall protesters for “fear-mongering,” charging they are guilty of “harassment, intimidation, and physical violence.” That allegation will come as a surprise to the town hall protesters who were blocked by members of the same union from attending a Tampa Bay town hall meeting last week, as well as a protester in Missouri who was beaten seriously. (newsmax.com)

Patriotic labor-state Americans protest ObamaCare ... After the office of Maryland Sen. Ben Cardin admitted to receiving over 1,600 RSVP’s for its health care Town Hall, they must have been surprised at the more than 2,000 citizens that showed up according to witnesses and University Police. An urgent request to the AFL-CIO for forces to “counter” those opposed to healthcare was able to result in the a large group of supporters in line hours before the doors opened but was not able to counter the voices of those locked out of the meeting. Sign carrying protesters both for and against the health care bill took up positions on both sides of the road in front of the event with a core group of about 50 supporters being opposed by nearly 300. The supporters were approximately 15 red shirt wearing “Progressives of Maryland” and another group of about 15 yellow shirt wearing union members. The remainder of the group was made up of aging hippie types and young college students. For Maryland, an extremely liberal state, the turnout was amazing for the conservative movement. They countered the typical 2-4-6-8 cheers of the union members (read from script sheets) with “All we are saying, is pay your own bills” sung to the tune of the Beatles “All we are saying is give peace a chance” while the crowd swayed back and forth. (freerepublic.com)

In the tank for ObamaCare ... Last Tuesday, a liberal advocacy group sent a "playbook" to its members with detailed instructions to counter "the 'tea-bagger' protesters and right-wing activists" showing up at town hall meetings from coast to coast. According to its website: "Health Care for America Now (HCAN) is a national grassroots campaign of more than 1,000 organizations in 46 states representing 30 million people dedicated to winning quality, affordable health care we all can count on in 2009. Our organization and principles are supported by President Obama, Vice President Biden, and more than 190 Members of Congress." Despite HCAN's size, scope, and apparent support from the current President, at the same time the media diligently castigated the dissent at recent political gatherings as being set up by outside conservative organizations, not one major press outlet thought this advocacy group's "Playbook For Thwarting Town Hall Protesters" was at all newsworthy. (newsbusters.org)

Change we cannot trust ... An administration that said, "I don't want to run the auto companies"; "I don't want to run banks"; and "the recovery is working," now says their socialized medicine plan won't "promote euthanasia, cut Medicaid, or bring about a government takeover of health care."Really? We've gotten a glimpse behind the curtain of the Obama administration's agenda, and what we've seen is unmistakably evil. See for yourself. A glimpse behind "Cash for Clunkers" reveals not only car crushing that takes affordable used vehicles off the market for those who don't want the debt of a new car, but, more importantly, it was also a government computer grab. As Glenn Beck exposed, look at what happened to car dealers who agreed to participate. It turned their computers and every file on them over to the government (wnd.com)

Obama's U.S. rotting from the head down ... Rallying for a Democratic candidate in Virginia, President Barack Obama (D) roused the crowd on health care with this totalitarian us v them Saul Alinsky community organizing tactic. "I don't want the folks who created the mess to do a lot of talking. I want them to get out of the way so we can clean up the mess." Well, ok, I'll go along with that. Let's get those messed up folks out of the way so we, not you President Barack Obama, can "clean up" your mess. And yes, since you put it that way, it is your mess. Let's start with getting those union folks out of the way, especially those leaders. Tell them to shut up and stop talking more: more benefits, more health care paid for by someone else than union members, less work done by union members for more money. Government (nee General) Motors has gone bust largely by becoming a health benefits company for retirees and workers with a small, inefficient auto manufacturing plant attached. Rigid work rules, early retirement and all those goodies you talked the management into weren't free and now, thanks to your talking, many workers are unemployed. So stop the talking and let others clean up the mess you left for those hard working blue collar folks. And then there are the talkative--and suing--lawyers. You know, like John Edwards. Blithely suing doctors and keeping large chunks of the award for himself he lived lavishly while forcing up health care costs with increased insurance premiums and lawsuit proof extraneous work; in the process driving some obstetricians and other high risk specialists out of town. And after that we're going to clean up the mess made by legislators talking out of both sides of their mouths on housing--you know like Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) who talked and said Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are in fine shape so let's give everyone mortgages, even if they can't afford it, because if you don't we'll sue you for racism. And all those legislators who got easy, questionable mortgages (example, Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT)) and former Illinois Senator and now President, Barack Obama; yeah, we've got to clean up those mortgage and housing messes too. (americanthinker.com)

Having faith in socialism ... An interfaith coalition — Muslims, Christians and Jews — unveiled a “40 Days for Health Reform” campaign Aug. 10. It will mobilize people of all faiths to press Congress to enact health care reform that protects “all God’s children.” Religious leaders, in a telephone news conference, released a new television ad that blasts the insurance companies for spending millions to block health care reform to insure “higher profits.” They also announced that on Tuesday, Aug. 11, there will be “district prayer events” in 100 congressional districts while Congress is in recess. (pww.org)

SEIU's New Prog speech police thugs up the ante ... Nothing is more American than free speech. In recent days we have seen congressional town-hall meetings erupting in anger. These Americans have shouted, screamed and cried out to be heard. I am not aware of any violence, just righteous indignation. Service Employees International Union thugs supporting government health care in St. Louis did however use violence to try to silence citizens. Nancy Pelosi and Steny Hoyer are calling the outbursts “un-American.” Billions of our tax dollars and trillions of borrowed dollars are being wasted. The American people have a right to express their anger, and that is not un-American. (joplinglobe.com)

Shame on hypocrisy of Pelosi, Hoyer, SEIU ... Nancy Pelosi and Steny Hoyer decided to double down on some pretty distasteful messaging today, calling some of the opposition to health care reform, "un-American" in a USA Today op-ed. Specifically, this is what the Speaker finds so unpatriotic: "These disruptions are occurring because opponents are afraid not just of differing views — but of the facts themselves. Drowning out opposing views is simply un-American. Drowning out the facts is how we failed at this task for decades." Town halls have indeed been rowdy (although instances of documented aggression have all gone one way: Obamacare supporter to protester), and sometimes not ideal for discussion of the ins and outs of health care reform. But Democrats and liberals have largely used one memo from a libertarian activist in Connecticut to claim a national, nefarious campaign of conservative disruption by mischaracterizing the memo and fibbing about its provenance and distribution. On the other hand, I have a memo from SEIU Local 2001 (the same Conn. district where the original MacGuffie memo originated), which cannot be misunderstood. It was issued this week in preparation for Rep. Jim Himes' town hall in Stamford, Conn. It's still up, but I did a screen shot, in case it disappears. Here's the announcement: "Action: Opponents of reform are organizing counter-demonstrators to speak at this and several congressional town halls on the issue to defend the status quo. It is critical that our members with real, personal stories about the need for access to quality, affordable care come out in strong numbers to drown out their voices." Perhaps Pelosi should check with her allies about their tactics before labeling them "un-American" in the future. (weeklystandard.com)

Is George Soros Dr. Evil? ... Health Care for America Now, one of those "grassroots" organizations Dems usually love, just got a lotta love - five million dollars worth - from the MoveOn.org financier. Greg Sargent's The Plum Line reports HCAN's effectiveness has been questioned, although HCAN is highly organized. Soros funds grassroots organizing for progressive causes and candidates. MoveOn.org is a Soros favorite. Five million members financed Barack Obama's Presidential campaign. They've also been willing to donate on a dime, responding instantly to urgent appeals for money to support a variety of progressive causes. MoveOn.org is a mouthpiece for progressive propagandizing, according to Capital Research Center. Apparently there are good grassroots and bad grassroots, according to everyone on the left. Progressives attacked spontaneous disruptions of their thoughtful, intelligent town hall health care discussions, aka indoctrination. The attackers are the bad seeds of the grassroots movements, aka old people, not obedient to the health care manifesto. (examiner.co)

But we need to do something about obesity ... President Obama may see resistance to his healthcare proposal from a group he was not expecting: Obese Americans. A new study in the journal Health Affairs found that obesity-related health spending costs $147 billion annually, and that obese Americans spend an average of $1,400 more per year on health expenses than those in a healthy weight range. The research ties closely with an earlier study in the Health Affairs Policy Journal showing that obesity creates a 36 percent increase in inpatient and outpatient spending, and a 77 percent increase in medication use. The findings led RTI health economist Eric Finkelstein to say, “Unless you address obesity, you're never going to address rising health-care costs.” So why should obese Americans worry about President Obama’s universal healthcare proposal? Shouldn’t they be happy that their increased costs will be paid for by the government? Not exactly. (thebulletin.us)

A leftwing argument for musical chairs ... Term limits is another popular idea whose time may have come if senators fail to heed the American people’s demand for the choice of a public insurance plan. The usual response to the idea of term limits is “elections limit terms.” That sounds democratic. But in the age of $50 million elections to the U.S. Senate and the $600 million cost of just Barack Obama’s run for the presidency, dollars trump democracy. At those price tags, as Paul Wellstone noted, we’re not holding elections, we’re holding auctions. A 78 percent re-election rate for sitting senators — 90 percent for someone like Baucus with five terms — illustrates the near-futility of challenging such entrenchment. And while redrawing the boundaries of congressional districts every 10 years in response to census changes helps keep U.S. Representatives on their toes, state boundaries, the ones that matter to senators, never change. Elected officials don’t like term-limits, but every voter I’ve asked loves the idea. Thirty-six states already limit gubernatorial terms, 15 limit state legislative terms. There is no hue and cry to repeal the 22nd Amendment’s limit on presidential terms, ratified in 1951 after FDR’s three re-elections threatened to shatter George Washington’s enduring precedent of self-imposed two terms. Thomas Jefferson favored limits, “to prevent every danger which might arise to American freedom by continuing too long in office.” The welfare of the American people is now endangered just as Jefferson envisioned, and it’s time to heed his warning. (swcbulletin.com)

Guess Who Allegedly Beat Kenny Gladney? ... Tea Party researchers have discovered some interesting news on one of the people arrested for beating Ken Gladney. Elston K. McCowan is a former organizer – now the Public Service Director of SEIU Local 2000 – and board member of the Walbridge Community Education Center, and is a Baptist minister, has been a community organizer for more than 23 years, and now, he is running for Mayor of the City of St. Louis under the Green Party. McCowan accused the Mayor of setting fire to his van . . . because that’s what big city mayors do in their spare time, I guess. He also called Slay a racist. And, on election night, McCowan thanked the family who voted for him. It was quite touching, actually. McCowan is not a rank-and-file, card-carrying union guy. He is a director with SEIU. He IS the union. He ISSUES the cards. Andy Stern himself might as well have kicked Gladney. Stern has some fishy hiring standards, folks. Can’t wait to see how he spins THIS one. (stlouisteaparty.com)

Disgraced ACORN-SEIU co-founder Wade Rathke tied to disgraced Jefferson ... Birds of a feather flock together. Let the record reflect that convicted gangster William Jefferson, a Democrat who used to represent New Orleans in the U.S. House of Representatives, has (or had might be a better word) ties to the radical activist group ACORN. ACORN and Jefferson weren't exactly bosom buddies, but they did work together. I call Jefferson a gangster, by the way, because last week he was convicted of racketeering. ACORN helped get Jefferson elected years ago. SEIU gave Jefferson's campaign $5,000 in the 2000 election cycle, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Two of SEIU's locals are part of the ACORN network. Local 100 covers Louisiana. Its chief organizer is disgraced ACORN founder Wade Rathke who remains at large despite his role in covering up his brother's nearly $1 million embezzlement for eight years. (spectator.org)

Rep. Elton Gallegly placed on Dirty Money Watch ... WHO: Rep. Elton Gallegly (R-Ca.). WHAT: Gallegly received the following dirty money: PMA Group (PAC) $2,000 in 2008 election cycle. WHY IT’S DIRTY: PMA Group (Paul Magliocchetti and Associates) was a defense lobbying group that is now the focus of multiple federal investigations concerning allegations of influence peddling and other corrupt activities, mostly associated with earmarks. Before it was disbanded earlier this year, PMA Group's employees and its political action committee gave current members of Congress $3.4 million between 1989 and 2008, with 79 percent of that going to Democrats, according to OpenSecrets.org. WILL GALLEGLY GIVE IT BACK: Gallegly did not respond to The Examiner’s request for comment. THE SCORE: Number of Democrats who have given it back: 0 • Number of Republicans who have given it back: 0 • Gave suspect donation to charity: Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.), Rep. Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.) YOUR TURN: You can reach Rep. Gallegly’s Washington D.C. office at 202-225-5811. (washingtonexaminer.com)

These aren't the union thugs we used to know ... In the old days, the left could rely on their union allies to provide muscle and intimidation. They're trying to accomplish the same now, but it's not working out quite as well as it used to. At a Tampa town hall meeting, members of the Service Employees International Union made the top of the charts on YouTube by shoving old people out the door and closing it. In St. Louis, a very mild-mannered gentleman was handing out free flags and "Don't Tread on Me" buttons when he was assaulted by members of the same union. He's going to be okay and his attackers are facing charges. Seems there were more than a couple of cell phone's on hand. The man's lawyer was with him and witnessed the whole affair. The left is relying on tactics that have worked well in the past. However, unions today are less than 10% of the workforce. Also, everyone has cameras nowadays. You can't get away with just saying "I didn't do it" when 2,000,000 web surfers saw you do it. Then there's the union itself. Service Employees International just doesn't have the same scare factor as the Teamsters or the Ironworkers or something. (examiner.com)

International Collectivism

Castro Bros. use up all the toilet paper in Cuba ... This is for real. After being sacked by three horrendous hurricanes and exposed to the ravages of the global economic crisis, Cuban officials have reported that the country is fast running out of toilet paper. Reuters reports that that Cuba is in a terrible bind: it doesn't have enough raw materials to produce enough toilet paper to satisfy the wiping needs of its entire population of 11 million,and, with the economy in free fall, the country doesn't have the funds to import it. And the problem is not limited to toilet paper -- Cuba is falling short of many basic consumer items. As with just about everything else, Cuban officials are blaming the U.S. trade embargo that has been in place for decades for their woes. Our solution: raid the bathrooms at Guantanamo Bay. With prisoners being shipped out every day, there must be toilet paper to spare. (blogs.villagevoice.com)

LatAm formula: Democracy + ACORN = Monarchy Restored ... Many democratically elected Latin American presidents are reluctant to relinquish office as their terms draw to a close. In an effort to remain president "forever," they have resorted to changing constitutions and forcing referendums to extend their time in office. The reasons cited are usually nobel. The Bolivarian Revolution of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is one he envisions as a long-term project - it's about 21st century socialism, with the lofty aims of ensuring economic independence, the equal distribution of revenue and an end to corruption. Chavez insists, of course, that this cannot be achieved overnight. It could take a few years, even decades, and therefore many terms as president. To this end, Chavez had the Venezuelan constitution changed in a referendum in February to pave the way for a president's unlimited re-election. Other leaders across Latin America - both left and right of the ideological spectrum - have also been unable to resist the temptation of tampering with the prevailing rules on re-election. (earthtimes.org)

Obama tries to calm left-wing LatAm thug friends ... "The same critics who say that the United States has not intervened enough in Honduras are the same people who say we are always intervening and the Yanquis need to get out of Latin America," Obama said told a closing news conference at a US-Mexico-Canada summit in Guadalajara. "You can't have it both ways," he insisted, without naming names. "We have been very clear in our belief that President Zelaya was removed from office illegally, that it was a coup and that he should return. We have cooperated with all the international bodies in sending that message." (chinadaily.com.cn)
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