Saturday, September 19, 2009

Guilt By Association

After Bill Richardson, Tom Daschle, Nancy Killefer withdrew from cabinet nominations, Geithner and Sebelius were confirmed even though they both owed years of back taxes, and Van Jones and Yosi Sergant were ousted from their czar posts, people assumed that there was a vetting problem in the Obama camp. "Who's vetting these people?" was the question asked. Implicit in that question is an assumption of innocence on the part of the administration. They didn't pick bad people; they have a poor selection process. The question that hasn't been asked, at least out loud by the mainstream media, is "Are these the people that Obama REALLY wants in place representing his administration?" What if the vetting process is working exactly as designed? Well, that just may be the case. Hillary Clinton recently called the vetting process "exhaustive." [1]


When I was young there were kids on the block that used to run around and cause trouble. Slingshots and BB guns were their common accessories, and there was a certain amount of lure that came with tools like that. Even though I went to school with them and knew them fairly well, I was forbidden from hanging out with them so I missed out on the all the fun. Then one night, shortly after my mom came home from a women's club meeting there was a knock on the door, and when she answered it, there was a policeman on the other side. He was looking for someone who had shot out a car window with a BB gun, and the shot had come from the bike path next to our house. I had just become the prime suspect. I swore I hadn't done it and it was true; another neighbor put the finger on the responsible parties, and all the kids who were with 'the shooter.' I was off the hook; they all got in big trouble. This was my first exposure to 'guilt by association.'


I tell this tale because it's relevant to our president. He has, for a long time, surrounded himself with people who openly hate our country, hate the government, and hold racial biases. He's supported organizations that have been exposed as criminal enterprises. He's been endorsed (sought their endorsement!) by a communist organization and selected communists to represent him in his administration. My parents didn't let me hang out with some of the kids in our neighborhood because they knew sooner or later those associations and the behavior they would encourage would get me into trouble. Is that going to happen to our president? It may already be starting.


If you go back to the 1990's, ACORN and the SEIU (local 880) were two of the groups who helped form The New Party in Chicago. This communist organization was frustrated with the centrist governing of Bill Clinton, so they endorsed candidates who pledged to push their agenda. Obama was one of those candidates, and members of the new party actively campaigned on his behalf. [2] Is this relevant? It may help explain the presence of communist Van Jones as the Green Jobs Czar. It certainly makes one wonder just how far to the left does Obama go?


Obama's ties to Acorn didn't stop with the new party. He was part of a team of lawyers representing ACORN in their attempt to register voters in Illinois in 1995. They won, forcing Illinois to implement the law. Of course now ACORN is under investigation in several states for voter registration fraud, so they don't follow the law anyway. He also successfully represented a group of aldermen in getting ward boundaries redrawn. So with new wards favoring the aldermen, loosened voter registration laws and the endorsement of the New Party, Obama's political career was off and running. [3]


In politics, a favor given must be returned. Obama helped ACORN; they helped get him elected to the Illinois state legislature. Last year, they helped him get elected president. So it was no wonder when Obama came to the White House and forced the stimulus bill through it was loaded with pork that was going to go to "community organizations" like ACORN. They weren't going to get all of it, so say the apologists, but you can take it to the bank that they were going to get some of it. Then ACORN was going to be one of the groups helping with the census…the census that determines congressional districts. With a history of redrawing boundaries for political gain, savvy people grew nervous. Talk of using "sampling" to "extrapolate" numbers in the census did nothing to mollify critics.


Enter James O'Keefe and Hannah Giles, two independent investigative reporters. The enterprising duo set out to see just how far they could get ACORN to go, and the answers shocked even them. Posing as a prostitute and a pimp, they went to several ACORN offices looking for assistance with taxes (turn $96,000 into $9,600? No problem!), housing (Want to run a brothel? Sure thing) and importing underage sex slaves (I have contacts in Tijuana! Gotcha covered!). Giles, in an interview with Sean Hannity, said that every single office they visited helped them. When you watch the videos, the people don't even blink at the requests they make. Acorn's nut has been cracked.


Of course, the apologists claim that Obama has no direct ties to ACORN. Please...John Gotti didn't pull the triggers, either, but he still wound up in jail. That it took a scandal this huge, this insurmountable, for the Obama and the left to abandon ACORN is telling, just as it was telling that it took ad-nauseum repetition of Jeremiah Wright screaming "God Damn America" for Obama to say he was no longer associated with him. The apologists at that time said that Obama wasn't in church for the bad stuff Wright said. He knew him well enough to use one of his lines as the title of his book (The Audacity Of Hope) but had no idea Wright hates America? Please.


Still, America elected him. It wasn't a landslide, but it was a convincing win. It SHOULD have been a landslide; he was running against a mediocre opponent who represented the party of the incumbent President, whose popularity was in the low 30's, in the midst of a financial meltdown. He was slick and well spoken, adored by the media who focused not on what he said but on how he said it. After 185 says as US Senator, he was on his way to the White House.


Anyone who read "The Case Against Barack Obama" was wise to his history and his tactics. I have to believe that anyone who read that book voted against him. Others voted for him simply because there was a D next to his name, or because of the R next to the other guy. I saw firsthand last fall while making calls for the Boulder County Republicans, that many Ron Paul supporters were so angered that McCain got the nod that they voted for Obama. He ran as a centrist, then upon coming to office he has pushed his agenda as far to the left as he could, and from the stimulus to pushing the health care debate, he has done things very quickly.


But people - 'we the people' - don't want to be governed from the left. In the midst of the recession, people are seeing the folly of using debt to get to the promised land. As houses get foreclosed upon, cars get repossessed, jobs continue to disappear and retirement plans no longer cover the goals set forth, people don't want risk; they want safety. Pushback against his policies has been rising, and may not have crested yet. The shine has worn off, and with the demise of ACORN, people may be waking from the dream of a new day to realize there is a nightmare below the surface, and that bodes not well for the president.


In the March 30th issue of Forbes, in his "Fact And Comment" section, Steve Forbes said "The President himself will start to see the light when his poll numbers crash below 50%, which they will if the economy isn't on the mend by Labor Day. Despite periods of suspension, the American system of checks and balances always reasserts itself." Well, the economy isn't on the mend, the poll numbers have dropped but Obama is pushing blindly forward, not only oblivious to the light, but to the cliff he's heading towards. Let's hope he doesn't pull the country down with him when he goes over.





Thursday, September 10, 2009

September 11th – The Year After

With all the current political strife, in the midst of the recession, it's easy to lose sight of the fact that we Americans, when united, are the most formidable force on the planet. Americans are the "sleeping giant" the Japanese awoke in 1941, and less than four years later we had routed both the Nazi regime and Imperial Japanese forces from their positions of power. We are, however, a people easily divided when we don't have a common enemy. The speed with which the partisan politics returned after the attacks on 9/11/2001, and the huge ideological divide currently reigning supreme in our land illustrates that sad fact.

On the first anniversary of 9/11, I felt a compulsion to talk to my team at work about what 9/11 meant to me. I composed a note that I emailed to them, and one of my team mates was so inspired by the note that he forwarded it to Lewis & Floorwax of 103.5 The Fox (a radio station in Denver, Colorado). The two deejays read the letter on the air, which I thought was remarkable given that I hadn't intended for it to be read to so large an audience. One of their comments was "this guy gets it" – which made me feel an even more remarkable sense of validation that yes, other people shared my worldview. This is one of the reasons I later started The Coyote page.

In 2008, on the eve of the 7th anniversary commemorating these horrible homicide attacks, I was looking for that letter and could not find it, so I reached out to the guy that had been so moved by it in 2002. His response was really humbling…here's an excerpt of his response (emphasis is mine):

"I couldn't find the file on my computer but I had a hardcopy that I keep with me. This was a very important letter to me that you wrote and I want to thank you for it. It means a lot to me."

He keeps a hard copy with him? When I wrote it, I never thought it would affect anyone so deeply, and THAT is why I write my articles and weekly Howls for The Coyote…if I could reach this guy and affect him so deeply, if I can do something positive for one person, then maybe here is a vehicle to reach other people.

In its entirety, here is my original note from 9/11/2002:

     I vividly remember a year ago, on the morning of Sept. 11th [2001], I was getting ready to leave for work. My girlfriend [1] was working from home and was on a conference call in her office. I went in to say goodbye and she put the phone on mute. She told me that one of the guys on her call said that a plane had hit the World Trade Center. She asked if I would turn on CNN and see what was going on. When I turned on the TV the same images were on every channel; a churning cloud of smoke billowing out of the top of the lone building. I remember thinking, "where's the other tower?" I thought it must have been obscured by the smoke, or hidden by the tower they were filming. It was just a bad camera angle. I didn't find out until I was in the car on my way to work what I was not ready to believe with my own eyes; that one of the two towers had fallen as a result of what was now obviously a terror attack. Shortly after I arrived at work, the second tower fell. The Pentagon was the site of the third attack, and then flight 93 went down in Pennsylvania. The thoughts that seemed to be on everyone's minds were "Why?" and "How many more are out there?" and "What's next?" We worked through the day and tried to make sense of everything that was going on around us.
     The devastation was incomprehensible. The images of the people in New York, frantically searching for hope, holding up signs with pictures of loved ones who were missing were especially gut wrenching. I went through the first few days after the attacks feeling numb, and then feeling pain and anguish as the stories the survivors told would bring me to the verge of tears. At every turn the sorrow and the grief grew more and more overbearing. I knew that at some point the shock and the disbelief would begin to wear off, but every time I turned on the TV it killed me to see what was happening. Now, as more media coverage turns to the anniversary I am finding that while I am no longer shocked, the grief is still close to the surface.
     Whether you knew someone personally who was in the Trade Center or the Pentagon, or knew someone who knew someone who was there, the odds are you were not more than 1 or 2 degrees of separation away from New York or Washington DC that day. Somehow we all got through it though, each in our own way, at our own pace. We got on with our lives. We've made it through the first year.
     While words have a hard time describing the totality of this tragedy, there were a few things that came out of September 11th that were positive. For a brief while the bickering between our political parties stopped, and our leaders had a united purpose. At a time when we were faced with the worst things humans are capable of, we saw in the actions of the police, fire departments and medical and rescue workers the best that humans are capable of. There has also been a lasting sense of patriotism that is still going strong, at least among the citizenry if not the politicians.
     I attended the opening ceremonies of the Highland Games in Estes Park this past weekend. As part of the ceremony they played the National Anthem, and I don't recall ever hearing a crowd sing it so loud. The piper bands played "Amazing Grace" in honor of those who died in the attacks. There is no more sorrowful sound than bagpipes playing that song, and many people began to openly weep. It really hit home to me just how deeply the attacks still are affecting people. Our society has been scarred by these events, and while they took place a full year ago, at times it seems to me that it was yesterday, or the day before. There are many days and weeks since then from which I don't remember anything in specific, but that day is as sharp and clear in my mind as this very moment.
     At the Highland Games opening ceremony, the last speaker was the Commander of NORAD, the North American Air Defense Command center buried deep within Cheyenne Mountain in Colorado. He spoke of that day, of the way the staff inside NORAD responded. He echoed the words we have heard from this nation's leaders many times. He said that every citizen of this great land has a duty to live their life, to go to work every day, to attend events like the Highland Games, football and baseball games, to show that the spirit of freedom cannot and will not be put down by cowards who live in caves and murder innocent people. I couldn't agree with him more.
     As the anniversary of the attacks is imminent we have a lot of uncertainty about what may happen. Many rumors and warnings of new attacks are flying about in the media, and certainly there will be a lot of trepidation surrounding the many memorial services. One thing I do know is that the sun will rise tomorrow and I have a job to do. I'm not a policeman, or a fireman, or one of the heroes in uniform actively fighting terrorism half a world away. But I am an American, and I will live like one. I will get up, go to work, and do my job. I play a role in the survival of this country, just like each of you, like everyone you see. I am an American, and no one will take that away from me.
[1] Now my wife.


As I read that last paragraph it becomes very clear to me that this September 11th we are facing a very different level of uncertainty. We have in power a president who relies on radicals, extremists and communists to help advance his ideology and a congress that openly expresses disdain as it looks down upon the people who put them in power in the first place. It occurs to me that there may be someone who CAN take away my right to be an American by ensuring that there is no longer an America that I can respect and love. This may be a tad melodramatic, but each day brings with it a new revelation, a new scandal, a new member of the administration who has dodged taxes, embraced communism, misused the power of taxpayer funded organizations to advance the president's cause, insults our intelligence or completely disregards our opinions. But I am an American, so I will continue to fight for what I believe to be right. I am an American so I will continue to exercise my constitutional right to freedom of expression.
I am an American…but I am not so sure our current leadership wants to keep it that way.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Land Of Confusion

If you can wade through the distractions this week (Obama's September 8th indoctrination of our youth, "I Pledge" video, etc,) health care reform is still the topic that needs our attention the most. The trillion dollar travesty is going to sink us into a hole we may never get out of. While the progressives have no problem with that, those of us that think America is a good an noble place who owes no one an apology for 200 years of fighting for our freedom and the freedom of others would like to see it maintain it's status as the greatest country on earth. The liberals are still using the tired old tactics of name calling and character assassination to make their points, but the public ain't buyin' it this time around. Here's a verbatim (spelling errors included) post which attempts to belittle Those Who Would Oppose The Chosen One (hereafter known as TWWOTCO):


"I was going to join this debate but since it seems that most who oppose healthcare reform still have yet to educate themselves by reading any of the propossed legislation, I will just say that my quess is these are the same people who want to keep there kids home from school because the president is going to talk to children about the importance of staying in school and getting educated."


I see what you're doing here and I don't like it. First, way to work in a defense of the Sept 8 Indoctrination Speech before it's even been delivered, but let's not get off track. I replied with a number of my talking points, and I closed my response with this message: "So please tell the great uneducated masses, exactly how is this boondoggle going to work. And I'm only being partially sarcastic...if you can make a better case for it than any of our elected officials, hats off to you." Of course he ignored this challenge and after numerous other people left comments he threw in the towel by saying "I give up ignorance is bliss so all should be happy here."


And this is the problem with this entire debate. The left is so desperate to pass this for the Chosen One that they shut out any and all comments to the contrary, and they lie, lie lie about it. Here are a couple of their lies:


  1. "This is an issue of vital concern to every American, and I'm glad that so many are engaged," Obama said in his weekly radio and Internet address Saturday. "But it also should be an honest debate, not one dominated by willful misrepresentations and outright distortions, spread by the very folks who would benefit the most by keeping things exactly as they are."[1]
    1. I see what you're doing here and I don't like it. Let me translate this: "You're all a bunch of liars who would rape your own mother to make a buck. Shut up already!" Honest debate is taking place in the guise of Harry Reid having townhall meeting by invitation only, with the people who are aggrieved not being allowed in. Honest debate is taking place in the guise of Organizing For America coaching it's members to stand and chant "Health Care Now" to drown out when someone (TWWOTCO) disrupts a town hall meeting. These are ways in which the left encourages honest debate.
  2. In debunking myths about the health care plan, Obama said the overhaul would not use taxpayer dollars to pay for abortions [1]
    1. Barbara Mikulski introduced an amendment to the bill that would provide for abortions. "Madame Chairman, would you be willing to put some language in that says, 'Not including abortion services'?" [Senator Orin]Hatch asked. "Then I think you would have more support." Mikulski concluded a convoluted response by saying, "So, no, I would not be willing to do that at this time." [2] This reminds me of the episode of the Simpson's where Marge asks Homer if he's licking toads (to get high) and Homer replies "I'm not not licking toads."
  3. Top White House advisers on Sunday challenged Republicans to offer alternatives and not simply criticize administration approaches [3]
    1. What happens when you offer alternatives? Ask John Mackey. He wrote an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal ( ) with alternatives. The house bill? 1000+ pages. Mackey's plan? 8 bullet points, one page. The company, 270 stores and 54,000 employees, voted on the new plan and decided by a majority of 77% to go with the plan as Mackey describes in his op-ed. 77! That's even more, as a percentage, than voted for Obama. [4] What did Mackey get for his offer of alternatives? A liberal boycott of his stores. [5] I guess you could file this under honest debate as well.
  4. My favorite Obama line: "so let me be clear: If you like your doctor or health care provider, you can keep them. If you like your health care plan, you can keep that too."
    1. From HR3200, Page 16, section 102, subparagraph 2 [abridged]: You can keep your current coverage if the following conditions apply: Subject to paragraph (3) and except as required by law, the issuer does not change any of its terms or conditions, including benefits and cost-sharing, from those in effect as of the day before the first day of Y1. In other words, if your co pay or any other terms or conditions change, you must enroll in a plan that meets the government approved standards even if that means dropping your current coverage. In 12 years with my insurer there has never been a year where the terms and conditions haven't changed. So - what the plan REALLY says is "you can keep your current coverage - for a while"
    2. Further, page 17, paragraph (b) GRACE PERIOD FOR CURRENT EMPLOYMENT BASED HEALTH PLANS.—Subparagraph (1) GRACE PERIOD.— subparagraph (A) IN GENERAL.—The Commissioner shall establish a grace period whereby, for plan years beginning after the end of the 5-year period beginning with Y1, an employment-based health plan in operation as of the day before the first day of Y1 must meet the same requirements as apply to a qualified health benefits plan under section 101, including the essential benefit package requirement under section. In other words, if your plan doesn't look just like the government plan, you must switch to one that does. So after five years it won't matter if you're in the government plan, they'll all look like the government plan. So sure, you can keep you coverage if you like it - as long as nothing in any of the Ts and Cs changes for five years, but sooner or later, you WILL eat this cooking.
  5. Right wing extremists shattered windows and vandalized the DNC offices in Denver, according to Pat Waak (Colorado Democrat Chairwoman). "Clearly there's been an effort on the other side to stir up hate. I think this is the consequence of it." [6]
    1. Turns out, the culprit was a left wing extremist with an arrest on his record for protesting at the RNC in Minneapolis last year. Even more damaging was the report that he worked for a democrat and was paid by the SEIU. [7] Rahm Emmanuel said "never let a crisis go to waste." He could have added "If there is no crisis, invent one."


While the left is disingenuous at best and dishonest at worst, those on the right do themselves no favors by blindly reposting or repeating material without doing a little fact checking and research. Facts are stubborn things, as they say. Liberals don't let them get in the way of their arguments, but they can't out-debate you if you have them in your arsenal. You'll know you've won when they say "I give up" and call you ignorant on their way out the door. As Ann Coulter says, if you don't leave a liberal in an impotent, sputtering rage, you're not doing it right.






[4] Contrary to the revisionist history of the Obanauts, he is not the most popular president in history. Day 1 of his presidency saw him ranked 7th among presidents dating back to Truman with an approval rating of 64. Who was more popular? Truman (81), Johnson (78), Kennedy (72), Ford (71), Eisenhower (68) and Carter (CARTER!) (66). After six months in office he had fallen to 10th place with a rating of 55; even the left's favorite punching bag (seriously, when will someone tell Olbermann and Maddow that he's not the president any more!?) George W Bush was rated higher (56) than Obie Wan Baloney after the first six months.






Wednesday, September 2, 2009

H1N1 – The Gathering (political) Storm

I will dive into this topic in a little more depth later...but I want to get these thoughts out there before the rest of the pundits.

The health care debate has stalled the reform bills, at least temporarily. People have grown weary of the spending, the government largess, and in the current economy they're crankier than normal anyway, so they've been spoiling for a fight. What the Obama team needs is a good crisis to distract us from how bad this legislation is and make us more pliable and open to pushing it through congress. What to do, what to do...[go into liberal mindset]

Aha! On the horizon - SWINE FLU! If it hits badly enough, and people start dying - WOW, that would really make a case for health care reform, right? Because if we had universal health care, everyone would have received a vaccination and no one would have died! Those evil Republicans must not care about your grandmother if they let her die from the swine flu, right? Let us pass the bill and this will never happen again!

But how to get the message out in a sufficiently scary way so we can use the politics of fear? If only we had a media that was complicit with our agenda. Oh wait, silly me, we do!! MSNBC, NBC, ABC - start doing your pieces on this scam - er, crisis. Warn people about the 500,000 plastic coffins the WHO and CDC have being stored outside the Atlanta airport, talk about the deaths being double to triple the normal death rate from the everything you can to scare people. Then we can beat them with the H1N1 club until they relent and let us pass the appropriate-length non-pork filled bill. Maybe it will actually be bad enough that we can suspend civil liberties and shut people up by force!

[come back to reality]...ugh. That was nasty in there! I feel dirty.

Will H1N1 be a big deal? I don't know any more than the rest of us do. The media seemed disappointed that round one didn't kill more people. Remember, if it bleeds it leads, and no blood makes for dull programming. The better question is: Will the administration use any and all means necessary to get health care reform passed, at any cost? You bet. You heard it here first...if H1N1 doesn't actually make you sick, prepare for the coverage and the political drafting off of its wake to make you ill anyway.