Thursday, December 24, 2009

Banks Bundled Bad Debt, Bet Against It and Won

Banks Bundled Bad Debt, Bet Against It and Won

Published: December 23, 2009

Goldman and other firms eventually used the C.D.O.’s to place unusually large negative bets that were not mainly for hedging purposes, and investors and industry experts say that put the firms at odds with their own clients’ interests.

“The simultaneous selling of securities to customers and shorting them because they believed they were going to default is the most cynical use of credit information that I have ever seen,” said Sylvain R. Raynes, an expert in structured finance at R & R Consulting in New York. “When you buy protection against an event that you have a hand in causing, you are buying fire insurance on someone else’s house and then committing arson.”

I don't know why people would do business with Goldman Sachs. I don't know why the taxpayer bailed them out via AIG either. Sphere: Related Content

Friday, November 20, 2009

Hadley Hacked "In the interest of Science"!!!!!!!!

Hadley hacked: warmist conspiracy exposed?

Andrew Bolt is on the case:

Hackers have broken into the data base of the Hadley GRU unit - one of the world’s leading alarmist centres - and put the files they stole on the Internet, on the grounds that the science is too important to be kept under wraps.


So the 1079 emails and 72 documents seem indeed evidence of a scandal involving most of the most prominent scientists pushing the man-made warming theory - a scandal that is one of the greatest in modern science. I’ve been adding some of the most astonishing in updates below - emails suggesting conspiracy, collusion in exaggerating warming data, possibly illegal destruction of embarrassing information, organised resistance to disclosure, manipulation of data, private admissions of flaws in their public claims and much more. If it is as it now seems, never again will “peer review” be used to shout down sceptics.

This is clearly not the work of some hacker, but of an insider who’s now blown the whistle.

F-ing Bombshell!!!!!!!!!!


Some good links can be found here:

environmentalists exposed as liars

Planet Gore: The Blue-Dress Moment May Have Arrived

If legit, this apparently devastating series of revelations will be very hard for the media to ignore. I didn't say impossible — they're fully vested partners in the global warming industry, because catastrophism sells. But so does scandal, and this appears to be the makings of a very big one. Imagine this sort of news coming in the field of AIDS research. Then reflect that the taxpayer spends more on climate-related research than on the entire suite of AIDS programs, far beyond drug research.

This is a scandal that will rock the scientific world. Watch out baby, bombs below!

I celebrate the hackers! I drink in their honor!


. Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Health Care Numbers

Obama has said that we have 30 million uninsured in this country.

"There are now more than thirty million American citizens who cannot get coverage."

"These are the facts. Nobody disputes them."

That was in his September address to Congress. Those "were the facts", and "nobody disputes them". Nobody accept Obama in August:

“I don't have to explain to you that nearly 46 million Americans don't have health insurance coverage today,” Obama said in his remarks at the beginning of the town hall meeting. “In the wealthiest nation on Earth, 46 million of our ,fellow citizens have no coverage. They are just vulnerable.”

Nice to have all the facts! Especially when they seem to change from speech to speech.

The population of the United States is 308 million.

From Obama's speech:

"In just a two year period, one in every three Americans goes without health care coverage at some point."

Given our population, that would be close to 103,000,000 that go without health care coverage at some point over two years. That is a large number. I would like to see the statistics behind it.

From the Washington Post:

"Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid presented an $848 billion health-care overhaul package on Wednesday that would extend coverage to 31 million Americans and reform insurance."

I am struck by the fact that out of the 30 million uninsured, Harry Reid will insure 31 million of them. His bill would cover 103% of the uninsured. Now that is what I call effective government.

"The bill would cover an additional 31 million people over the next decade. That would boost the percentage of nonelderly Americans with medical insurance from 83% to 94% over the next decade -- slightly less than the 96% who would be covered by the House bill."

It is obvious that Harry Reid isn't using the 30 million uninsured number that Obama rolled out before Congress and the American people. He is using the old 46 million uninsured number. Why do these people keep switching around the numbers?

Here is the source of the 46 million uninsured number:

In fact, the latest available government statistics on the number of uninsured in America comes from the Census Bureau’s “Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2007,” which is published every August. (The Census Bureau report that will estimate the number of uninsured in 2008 will be released later this month.)

The current report says that there were 35.920 million uninsured U.S. citizens and 9.737 million uninsured foreign nationals in the United States.

Table 6 on page 22 of the report says that in 2007 there were a total of 45.657 million uninsured people residing in the United States. The table provides a breakout on the demographics of these 45.657 uninsured, indicating that it includes 33.269 million native born citizens and 2.651 million naturalized citizens, for a total of 35.920 U.S. citizens who are uninsured.

The report also states there were also 9.737 million persons in the United States in 2007 who were “not a citizen” and who did not have health insurance.

The Senate plan by Harry Reid is going to cost 848 billion. And by their own admission, it is also going to leave 16 to 17 million people still uninsured.

From the LA Times:

"The bill would cover an additional 31 million people over the next decade. That would boost the percentage of nonelderly Americans with medical insurance from 83% to 94% over the next decade -- slightly less than the 96% who would be covered by the House bill."

If the 11% increase represents 31,000,000 people, the 6% left off represent almost 17,000,000 people by my math. Of course, that would leave us with 48 million uninsured, which is a new high. So maybe those pecentages have some rounding errors. Maybe the numbers are just fudged anyway.

I think all the numbers are bogus, but they do matter because they are used to push the government takeover.

Here is a breakdown of the uninsured by Keith Hennessey:

Also from Hennessey:

Let us walk through the graph from top to bottom.

There were 45.7 million uninsured people in the U.S. in 2007.

  • Of that amount, 6.4 million are the Medicaid undercount. These are people who are on one of two government health insurance programs, Medicaid or S-CHIP, but mistakenly (intentionally or not) tell the Census taker that they are uninsured. There is disagreement about the size of the Medicaid undercount. This figure is based on a 2005 analysis from the Department of Health and Human Services.

  • Another 4.3 million are eligible for free or heavily subsidized government health insurance (again, either Medcaid or SCHIP), but have not yet signed up. While these people are not pre-enrolled in a health insurance program and are therefore counted as uninsured, if they were to go to an emergency room (or a free clinic), they would be automatically enrolled in that program by the provider after receiving medical care. There’s an interesting philosophical question that I will skip about whether they are, in fact, uninsured, if technically they are protected from risk.

  • Another 9.3 million are non-citizens. I cannot break that down into documented vs. undocumented citizens.

  • Another 10.1 million do not fit into any of the above categories, and they have incomes more than 3X the poverty level. For a single person that means their income exceeded $30,600 in 2007, when the median income for a single male was $33,200 and for a female, $21,000. For a family of four, if your income was more than 3X the poverty level in 2007, you had $62,000 of income or more, and you were above the national median.

  • Of the remaining 15.6 million uninsured, 5 million are adults between ages 18 and 34 and without kids.

  • The remaining 10.6 million do not fit into any of the above categories, so they are:

  • U.S. citizens;

  • with income below 300% of poverty;

  • not on or eligible for a taxpayer-subsidized health insurance program;

  • and not a childless adult between age 18 and 34.

Look at the breakdown above. Ask yourself the question, who will the 16-17 million uninsured be after this bill? And who does the bill actually insure?

You have 10.7 million who are already covered. Some are the Medicare undercount who don't realize that Medicare/Medicade already covers them. Some are people that are eligible but haven't signed up for the programs. It is easy to take credit for insuring these people, they already have the saftey net.

You have 10.1 million people that already live above 300% of the poverty line. Those people can afford to buy insurance and they will be forced to buy it under the new plan.

So in two easy steps it is easy to get to 20.8 million people. Surely all of those people will be "covered" in the new plan. They are the low hanging fruit.

Think about that. That is over 2/3rds of Harry Reid's 31 million people. He is going to insure 10.7 people that already have insurance. The cost to insure the already insured should be zero. Then he will mandate and force 10.1 million people that can afford it to buy insurance. The cost to force other people to buy insurance should be zero. That means he is only going to really pay to insure 10 million people, and he will be paying 848 billion dollars to do it. That comes in at $85,000 per head.

Is that what it comes down too? We are going to force 10.1 million people to buy overpriced insurance they don't want to buy. We are going to pay dearly to cover another 10 million people, while still leaving 16 million people uninsured. It seems like a really bad plan that won't really satisfy anyone. But at least it will cost a lot of money. Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Terrorists on Trial

I can't help but thinking that the liberals in power want a conservative federal Judge to preside over the terrorist hearings. The last thing they want is a liberal activist judge. Think about that.

They don't want one of their own kind that they like to appoint because of the damage that could be done.

Liberals want KSM to hang as much as we do, they just want it done in the nice and neat US Justice System. If they get an activist Judge that they appointed, he could throw out the whole of the evidence based upon tourture.

The last thing they want is these guys to walk. It would be a disaster for America.

Thinking through that vein, it could be a constitutional crisis. Imagine if they threw out the case against KSM. Many people would not be able to accept KSM, the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks going free. They would take action. It could be bloody. The liberals seem to think the death penalty or life in jail is a lock. I don't share their optimism. Anything can happen in our legal system, and I don't like taking things to chance.

They say they roll judges, but I doubt they will roll this one at random. I bet 10-1 that a conservative judge gets this case because that is what we all need. This should not be a trial on torture or the Bush White House. It needs to be a trail of terrorists that killed thousands of people.

If done poorly, this could be the dry powder keg that could explode. You simply can't let these people go for any reason. Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Afghanistan is a Cesspool of Humanity

One more reason to leave the place for good...

How the US Funds the Taliban

From Aram Rosten at The Nation:

In this grotesque carnival, the US military's contractors are forced to pay suspected insurgents to protect American supply routes. It is an accepted fact of the military logistics operation in Afghanistan that the US government funds the very forces American troops are fighting. And it is a deadly irony, because these funds add up to a huge amount of money for the Taliban. "It's a big part of their income," one of the top Afghan government security officials told The Nation in an interview. In fact, US military officials in Kabul estimate that a minimum of 10 percent of the Pentagon's logistics contracts--hundreds of millions of dollars--consists of payments to insurgents.

In order to fight the Taliban, first we need to pay the Taliban. WTF?!?!?!

I wonder where those Taliban get funding to kill Americans? Maybe from tax paying Americans? WTF!

The bizarre fact is that the practice of buying the Taliban's protection is not a secret. I asked Col. David Haight, who commands the Third Brigade of the Tenth Mountain Division, about it. After all, part of Highway 1 runs through his area of operations. What did he think about security companies paying off insurgents? "The American soldier in me is repulsed by it," he said in an interview in his office at FOB Shank in Logar Province. "But I know that it is what it is: essentially paying the enemy, saying, 'Hey, don't hassle me.' I don't like it, but it is what it is."

As a military official in Kabul explained contracting in Afghanistan overall, "We understand that across the board 10 percent to 20 percent goes to the insurgents. My intel guy would say it is closer to 10 percent. Generally it is happening in logistics."

In a statement to The Nation about Host Nation Trucking, Col. Wayne Shanks, the chief public affairs officer for the international forces in Afghanistan, said that military officials are "aware of allegations that procurement funds may find their way into the hands of insurgent groups, but we do not directly support or condone this activity, if it is occurring." He added that, despite oversight, "the relationships between contractors and their subcontractors, as well as between subcontractors and others in their operational communities, are not entirely transparent."

In any case, the main issue is not that the US military is turning a blind eye to the problem. Many officials acknowledge what is going on while also expressing a deep disquiet about the situation. The trouble is that--as with so much in Afghanistan--the United States doesn't seem to know how to fix it.

No doubt why the military invented the term "SNAFU" - "Situation Normal All F@#ked Up". I can tell you one way to fix the problem though, leave that place for the stone age.

I am quite convinced we have no idea what we are doing or why we are really even fighting. The President doesn't seem to know either. If Obama decides to bail out he has my full support. It will be tougher for him than me. He has spent the last couple of years describing Afghanistan as the "Right War". I thought it was a bad idea all along.

And if we are to stay, we should force them to legalize the drug trade and buy up all the poppy production and make it into morphine. We need to stop the black market that helps fund the Taliban. And we need to stop paying the Taliban for security services. I guess that would be a starting point.

It is madness. I wish we would leave now. Leave in 5 or 10 years I doubt it makes much difference in that cesspool of humanity. That place was meant for the stone age. Leave now and let them on their way. Sphere: Related Content

Monday, November 2, 2009

Some links

Some links to stuff I want to remember.

First some polls

Center Right Nation

Conservatives Maintain Edge as Top Ideological GroupCompared with 2008, more Americans “conservative” in general, and on issues.

Another poll of interest is about how Mexican nationals see the immigration issue:

Public Opinion in Mexico on U.S. Immigration: Zogby Poll Examines Attitudes

Among the findings:

A clear majority of people in Mexico, 56 percent, thought giving legal status to illegal immigrants in the United States would make it more likely that people they know would go to the United States illegally. Just 17 percent thought it would make Mexicans less likely to go illegally. The rest were unsure or thought it would make no difference.

Of Mexicans with a member of their immediate household in the United States, 65 percent said a legalization program would make people they know more likely to go to America illegally.

Two-thirds of Mexicans know someone living in the United States; one-third said an immediate member of their household was living in the United States.

Interest in going to the United States remains strong even in the current recession, with 36 percent of Mexicans (39 million people) saying they would move to the United States if they could. At present, 12 to 13 million Mexico-born people live in the United States.

A new Pew Research Center poll also found that about one-third of Mexicans would go to the United States if they could.

An overwhelming majority (69 percent) of people in Mexico thought that the primary loyalty of Mexican-Americans (Mexico- and U.S.-born) should be to Mexico. Just 20 percent said it should be to the United States. The rest were unsure.

Also, 69 percent of people in Mexico felt that the Mexican government should represent the interests of Mexican-Americans (Mexico- and U.S.-born) in the United States.

And check out this piece from the LA Times:

The Golden State isn't worth it

The smackdown of California big government is a must read. Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Did the New York Times just out an undercover CIA Operative?

Brother of Afghan Leader Is Said to Be on C.I.A. Payroll

KABUL, Afghanistan — Ahmed Wali Karzai, the brother of the Afghan president and a suspected player in the country’s booming illegal opium trade, gets regular payments from the Central Intelligence Agency, and has for much of the past eight years, according to current and former American officials.

The agency pays Mr. Karzai for a variety of services, including helping to recruit an Afghan paramilitary force that operates at the C.I.A.’s direction in and around the southern city of Kandahar, Mr. Karzai’s home.

The financial ties and close working relationship between the intelligence agency and Mr. Karzai raise significant questions about America’s war strategy, which is currently under review at the White House.

If this guy is working for the CIA, why is it OK for the New York Times to put it out in the paper for all to see? I wouldn't want my name out there if I was a CIA mole in a country with a civil war. What are the odds that someone comes gunning for his life now?

More from the article:

Ahmed Wali Karzai said in an interview that he cooperated with American civilian and military officials, but did not engage in the drug trade and did not receive payments from the C.I.A.

The relationship between Mr. Karzai and the C.I.A. is wide ranging, several American officials said. He helps the C.I.A. operate a paramilitary group, the Kandahar Strike Force, that is used for raids against suspected insurgents and terrorists. On at least one occasion, the strike force has been accused of mounting an unauthorized operation against an official of the Afghan government, the officials said.

Mr. Karzai is also paid for allowing the C.I.A. and American Special Operations troops to rent a large compound outside the city — the former home of Mullah Mohammed Omar, the Taliban’s founder. The same compound is also the base of the Kandahar Strike Force. “He’s our landlord,” a senior American official said, speaking on the condition of anonymity.

Mr. Karzai also helps the C.I.A. communicate with and sometimes meet with Afghans loyal to the Taliban. Mr. Karzai’s role as a go-between between the Americans and the Taliban is now regarded as valuable by those who support working with Mr. Karzai, as the Obama administration is placing a greater focus on encouraging Taliban leaders to change sides.

A C.I.A. spokesman declined to comment for this article.

So the alleged "CIA Agent" denies it, and the CIA won't comment on it. Someone else in the Obama administration has leaked this information, and now this agent and his operations have a raised threat level. They even detail his work with the strike force, and they even pinpoint the compound and name the actual house where they are basing operations.

Is publishing this information of a undercover CIA agent and the extent of the details of the covert operation good for America? Where is the Daily Kos or the Huffington Post on this? It appears they are with the New York Times.

Also from the Wall Street Journal:

October Marks Deadliest Month for U.S. in Afghanistan

Afghanistan is a cesspool of humanity that can't even give Detroit a run for its money. I don't see what we are really trying to accomplish there anymore. What would be victory and what would it look like? The Generals want a sustained effort and increased troops that could last another decade. From a cost benefit analysis, I see lots of costs that are clear and unavoidable. From the benefit side of the analysis I see little gain and perhaps some loss. "Walking through the region is "like walking through the Old Testament." (- Dutch Commander) Afghanistan is in the stone age. It was Stone Age before we came in, and it will be in the stone age long after we leave. Time to cut bait.

Yesterday the Washington Post ran this:

U.S. official resigns over Afghan war
Foreign Service officer and former Marine captain says he no longer knows why his nation is fighting

"I have lost understanding of and confidence in the strategic purposes of the United States' presence in Afghanistan," he wrote Sept. 10 in a four-page letter to the department's head of personnel. "I have doubts and reservations about our current strategy and planned future strategy, but my resignation is based not upon how we are pursuing this war, but why and to what end."


"I'm not some peacenik, pot-smoking hippie who wants everyone to be in love," Hoh said. Although he said his time in Zabul was the "second-best job I've ever had," his dominant experience is from the Marines, where many of his closest friends still serve.

"There are plenty of dudes who need to be killed," he said of al-Qaeda and the Taliban. "I was never more happy than when our Iraq team whacked a bunch of guys."

But many Afghans, he wrote in his resignation letter, are fighting the United States largely because its troops are there -- a growing military presence in villages and valleys where outsiders, including other Afghans, are not welcome and where the corrupt, U.S.-backed national government is rejected. While the Taliban is a malign presence, and Pakistan-based al-Qaeda needs to be confronted, he said, the United States is asking its troops to die in Afghanistan for what is essentially a far-off civil war.

Read the whole thing.

Looks like I got a bit off topic, but it is my blog and I am a ramblin man.

. Sphere: Related Content

Monday, October 26, 2009

Detroit is a Cesspool of Humanity

Detroit house auction flops for urban wasteland

Life in "Progress" City

In a crowded ballroom next to a bankrupt casino, what remains of the Detroit property market was being picked over by speculators and mostly discarded.
After five hours of calling out a drumbeat of "no bid" for properties listed in an auction book as thick as a city phone directory, the energy of the county auctioneer began to flag.

"OK," he said. "We only have 300 more pages to go."

There was tired laughter from investors ready to roll the dice on a city that has become a symbol of the collapse of the U.S. auto industry, pressures on the industrial middle-class and intractable problems for the urban poor.

On the auction block in Detroit: almost 9,000 homes and lots in various states of abandonment and decay from the tidy owner-occupied to the burned-out shell claimed by squatters.

Taken together, the properties seized by tax collectors for arrears and put up for sale last week represented an area the size of New York's Central Park. Total vacant land in Detroit now occupies an area almost the size of Boston, according to a Detroit Free Press estimate.

These auctioned properties were only from one year (2006). Things have only got worse in the housing market since then and the Auto Companies just went bankrupt. I read that last year Detroit had 50,000 to 60,000 abandoned buildings. Wouldn't surprise me if that number is larger now.

Gordon Gekko at the Taxman Blog notes that it wasn't conservative administrations that turned Detroit into a cesspool of humanity. You can make that argument for every big city in decline in middle america.

That argument was made very well in the past by Steven Hayward:

Broken Cities- Liberalism’s urban legacy

. Sphere: Related Content

Polution In China

Found the link to this at The Corner:

Amazing Pictures, Pollution in China at

Be sure not to be eating anything when you view. Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Dollar's Decline

Dollar loses reserve status to yen & euro

From the New York Post:

Over the last three months, banks put 63 percent of their new cash into euros and yen -- not the greenbacks -- a nearly complete reversal of the dollar's onetime dominance for reserves, according to Barclays Capital. The dollar's share of new cash in the central banks was down to 37 percent -- compared with two-thirds a decade ago.

Currently, dollars account for about 62 percent of the currency reserve at central banks -- the lowest on record, said the International Monetary Fund.

Bernanke could go down in economic history as the man who killed the greenback on the operating table.

After printing up trillions of new dollars and new bonds to stimulate the US economy, the Federal Reserve chief is now boxed into a corner battling two separate monsters that could devour the economy -- ravenous inflation on one hand, and a perilous recession on the other.

"He's in a crisis worse than the meltdown ever was," said Peter Schiff, president of Euro Pacific Capital. "I fear that he could be the Fed chairman who brought down the whole thing."

I wish Peter Schiff was President. He is on my list of favorite Americans. I fear that he is correct about our prospects. My biggest fear has always been the collapse of the dollar.

"Things that can't go on forever, don't" - Herbert Stein Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Jack Cashill Getting Traction (Ayers-Obama Authorship)

Literary Fraud!

From Mark Whittington at Associated Content:

Barack Obama Alleged to Have Committed Literary Fraud
October 06, 2009 by Mark Whittington

The evidence that William Ayers is the actual author of Dreams From My Father seems to have been confirmed by Christopher Anderson, the author of a sympathetic Obama book Barack and Michelle: Portrait of an American Marriage.

Ayers, in allegedly ghostwriting the Obama memoir, seems to have resorted to fiction on at least one occasion. There is mention in Dreams From My Father of a "rich green-eyed lovely" with whom Obama is alleged to have had a year-long affair while in college. The problem is, the woman likely never existed and seems to have been based upon a former lover of William Ayers.

Besides the odor of literary fraud, the most interesting thing about this is the that Cashill says it was William Ayers who had been the actual author of Dreams From My Father. During the campaign, Barack Obama downplayed his relationship with William Ayers, a former terrorist with the Weather Underground who would have been in jail for a long time had it not been for FBI bungling. Barack Obama presented his friendship with William Ayers as casual.

Obviously Barack Obama's friendship with William Ayers was much more than just casual. William Ayers was entrusted with the production of a book that launched Barack Obama as a intellectual/politician, someone who not only read books, but wrote them. William Ayers was also trusted enough to conceal his authorship of Dreams From My Father and hence the literary fraud that had been committed by Barack Obama.

I think the case is quite good that Barack Obama is a literary fraud. As time has gone on evidence mounts and more people that look at the facts come to the same conclusion.

If one thinks about it, it is stunning how little we know about the actual Barack Obama.

The Summer of Lies, 1981

Moving on, we have an interesting post on a site called Family Security Matters. The post was by Paul Hollrah. Perhaps I should have led with this: The Summer of 1981

Paul Hollrah makes an interesting point about the summer of 1981 in "Dreams From My Father". In Obama/Ayers' Dreams, Barack was hard at work in New York City. He was finding a place to live. Finding a job. He was searching out the City and exploring. I will quote liberally, as is my nature. Amazingly there is this:

Then his life took an unexpected turn. He writes, “It was in this humorless mood that my mother and sister (Maya Soetoro) found me when they came to visit during my first summer in New York,” and that, “They stayed with Sadik and me for a few nights, then moved to a condominium on Park Avenue that a friend of my mother’s had offered them while she was away.”

Obama explains, “That summer I had found a job clearing a construction site on the Upper West Side, so my mother and sister spent most of their days exploring the city on their own. When we met for dinner, they would give me a detailed report of their adventures… I would eat in silence until they were finished and then begin a long discourse on the problems of the city and the politics of the dispossessed.” He says, “I instructed my mother on the various ways that foreign donors and international development organizations like the one she was working for bred dependence in the Third World.”

It sounds as if Obama was an absolute joy to be around. The “dog-eat-dog” environment of the streets of New York must have been a welcome departure from their evenings with Obama.

But wait a minute. How can this be?

Although Obama fails to mention it in either of his memoirs… not in Dreams from My Father and not in The Audacity of Hope… he traveled to Indonesia and Pakistan during the summer of 1981. In an April 6, 2008 speech in San Francisco… the same speech in which he referred to rural Pennsylvanians as “bitter” people who “cling to guns or religion…” he explained, offhand, the value of his trip to Pakistan, vis-à-vis his knowledge of foreign affairs. He said, “I knew what Sunni and Shia was (sic) before I joined the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.”

When questioned about that trip, Obama’s campaign press secretary, Bill Burton, confirmed to the New York Times, and others, that Obama had visited his mother and his sister in Indonesia during the summer of 1981 and that, after leaving Indonesia, he’d spent three weeks in Pakistan, traveling with a Pakistani friend from Occidental College, Wahid Hamid. According to Burton, Obama stayed in Karachi with the family of another Pakistani friend, Mohammed Hasan Chandoo. Obama has never mentioned the Pakistan trip again.

So the question arises, which version are we to believe: the version contained in his memoir, Dreams from My Father, or the version his press secretary provided following his April 2008 speech in San Francisco? In other words, if Obama arrived in New York, say, during the first week of June, had housing problems, explored Manhattan like a “lab rat,” lived for a time with a friend, spent time with his mother and sister during their stay in New York, and worked as a laborer on a construction site on the Upper West Side, how did he find the time or the money to embark on an around-the-world trip to Indonesia and Pakistan by the middle of July?

I would say that is pretty damning stuff. In his book he is finding a place to live, getting a job and getting his life organized in New York City. He had problems finding a place, then he got kicked out of a place and someone ran away with his deposit. He finally settled in and explored the city. Then he got a job and was paying the bills. Then his mom and sister show up. That is a lot going on.

He never mentioned he went to Indonesia and Pakistan in his own autobiography. It can be confirmed that he went there to visit his mother and his sister. How likely is it in the same summer his mother and his sister came to New York City to visit him? Please!

And what about the way the passages are written? Read this again:

“I instructed my mother on the various ways that foreign donors and international development organizations like the one she was working for bred dependence in the Third World.”

Who do you think wrote that sentence? Is that a 20 something year old kid remembering conversations with his mother, or is that Bill Ayers? Sanity please rule the day. As far as I can tell, his mom wasn't even anywhere near New York City.

Kudos to Paul Hollrah. It is hard to look at his autobiography as anything more than a lie. It really is amazing how little we know about this man who is our President.

Ayers Admits or Mocks?

Blogger Anne Leary at Backyard Conservative met up with Bill Ayers at the Washington airport. She took this picture:

She went on to write this:

There I was, sitting in Reagan National Monday morning, sipping a Starbucks by the United counter before going through security. I had a little time, so I was browsing through the news. Some military guys had borrowed a chair from my table. I looked up from time to time to enjoy the sun streaming through. That's when I saw Bill Ayers, an instant blight. Scruffy, thinning beard, dippy earring, and the wirerims, heading to order. I gathered my things, got my camera ready, and snapped a shot right when he got his coffee.

I asked--what are you doing in D.C. Mr. Ayers?

For a moment I thought he might be on my flight back to Chicago. Charming. Initially I guess he thought I was laying claim to his coffee or something. He gave me an uneasy cheesy smile when he realized I was taking his picture. I asked him if he was speaking at GW? (Only I said GFW, guess I had the VFW on my mind) He said oh you mean GW, he said no...was trying to decide if I was a fan, then said he was giving a lecture in Arlington to a Renaissance group on education--that's what I do, education--you shouldn't believe everything you hear about me, you know nothing about me. I said, I know plenty--I'm from Chicago, a conservative blogger, and I'll post this. (Oh, yeah, Bill Ayers, quite the Renaissance man, nail-bomber extraordinaire. Gee, I see another friend of Barack, U.S. Sec. of Education Arne Duncan was there too. "The conference theme is “A Time for Reflection, Celebration and Rebirth.” How touching. At best, useless, at worst, so wrong.)

Then, unprompted he said--I wrote Dreams From My Father. I said, oh, so you admit it. He said--Michelle asked me to. I looked at him. He seemed eager. He's about my height, short. He went on to say--and if you can prove it, we can split the royalties. So I said, stop pulling my leg. Horrible thought. But he came again--I really wrote it, the wording was similar. I said I believe you probably heavily edited it. He said--I wrote it. I said--why would I believe you, you're a liar.

He had no answer to that. Just looked at me. Then he turned and walked off, and said again his bit about my proving it and splitting the proceeds.

I stole all of this from her blog. It was also written up in the Chicago Daily Observer. I couldn't parse it well without stealing, even though Jim Simpson of Renew America did a fine job in this post:

Ayers admits writing 'Dreams' to conservative blogger

If I take a step back and try to put on the objective hat, it is easy to say that Bill Ayers was joking. That is what he could easily claim if push comes to shove. It would be believable that he could say such things in mocking jest. I am a fan of sarcasm myself.

I don't know Anne Leary. If we accept her story of how this came out it does seem interesting. She didn't ask him about it. That is what struck me. He wanted to throw that out there. And he insisted on going back and reiterating the point to throw it out there again. From a critical standpoint, it does seem from reading her post that she might border on Ayers obsession. I doubt I would be able to spot him in an airport. That doesn't disqualify her account, but it does pose some questions.

Obviously at this point Cashill's theory is out there in some quarters, but it isn't a national story. Part of me tends to think that Bill Ayers would like that story. And if he did write or heavily edit the book, part of him probably would like to see that story. I am biased and have my own notions of what is going on, so maybe I am a bad judge. I found the tidbit interesting though, enough to pass it on to my massive following.

I think the "Summer of 1981" post adds a serious dimension to this just as a factual matter. Both of the stories didn't happen. One did. Either Barack way lying on the campaign trail or he was lying in his book.

The Whittington article just shows that other people are looking at the facts and coming to some of the same conclusions.

Don't know exactly what to make of blogger Anne who took him on in the DC airport, but I am a junkie and that had to be displayed.

So here are some other links on the topic. Most cover the exact same ground, but I link them so I can go back and read the comments. Sometimes some good stuff comes out in the comments. We have a world of diverse knowledge and talents, and you never know where the next angle will break. I believe that Ayers played a huge part in editing Dreams, and he probably did write it. The evidence looks better today than it did a year ago when it first came up. It will probably look much better a year from now. By the time the Democrats will actually have to acknowledge it, they will probably say "What? That old story? Ghostwriters are commonly used throughout history. What is the big deal? Shouldn't we focus on the real problems that affect us all, like healthcare, global warming or any other topic of the day?"

Jack Cashill is a stud for calling this early.

I would like to thank a lot of people I don't know for this post. I cited everything I could find. I would also like to thank my alcohol problem. In my life I have had trials and tribulations. Friends come and go, situations and circumstances can change, sometimes turning on a dime. The only constant that has stayed with me is my alcohol problem. I know at least that she will never leave.

What was my original point again? Oh yeah, the other links to this fiasco. So here they are:

Marathon Pundit: Backyard Conservative's encounter with Ayers--and his claim he wrote "Dreams," catches fire

According to Anderson, Michelle Obama suggested that the then little-known Barack approach Ayers for assistance in writing the book. And last week, while a guest on Cashill's show, the author said two people witnessed the future 44th president handing notes and tapes over to Ayers during the time Obama was said to have been writing the book.

I have a good memory, and I remember then-Sen. Obama saying this to the Chicago Tribune:

I would feel very uncomfortable putting my name to something that was written by somebody else or co-written or dictated. If my name is on it, it belongs to me.

Someone is lying. And it's certainly not Anne Leary.

You wonder what the political fallout would be if it could be proved without a doubt. I think there will always be plausible deniability. Wink wink, nudge nudge... Of course I have already swallowed the bait.

Tymon Smith from South Africas TimesLive:

Dreams from Obama's ghostwriter
Critics say he did not write his 1995 memoir alone

Steve Sailer: Ayers tells blogger in Starbucks he wrote "Dreams from My Father"

Ace of Spades: Claim: Conservative Blogger Says Bill Ayers Admits, Unprompted, He Wrote Dreams From My Father

Dennis Byrne from Chicago Now: Bill Ayers claims he wrote Obama's "Dreams From My Father"

Hot Air and AllahPundit: Bill Ayers to righty blogger: Of course I wrote “Dreams from My Father”

Rachel Slajda of TPM Livewire: Bill Ayers: Sure, I Wrote Obama's Book. Now How 'Bout Those Royalties?

World Net Daily: Palin co-author probed, Obama's ignored
News outlets silent about fresh evidence terrorist Ayers wrote 'Dreams'

American Thinker: Media Malpractice: Ayers' Dreams authorship suppressed

Maybe his significance to Martin Luther King, Jr. is plagerism.

Here and Here.


Related Posts:

More of Ayers, Obama and Jack Cashill

Dreams From My Ghost Writer? Sphere: Related Content

Monday, October 5, 2009

Cincinnati Football: Best In Ohio

The Cincinnati Bengals just beat the Cleveland Browns in the "Battle of Ohio. They are 3-1 and sit atop the division.

The Cincinnati Bearcats remained undefeated by thrashing Miami. They leapfrogged "The" Ohio State University in the polls, moving up to #8 in the nation:

The best college football team in Ohio, according to the voters in the Associated Press media poll, is the University of Cincinnati.

UC (5-0) moved ahead of mighty Ohio State on Sunday, jumping from No. 10 to No. 8. The Buckeyes remained at No.9.

It’s the first time since Nov. 21, 1951 that UC has been ranked ahead of Ohio State

And on the high school level, Cincinnati continues to dominate the state, with five of the last seven State Champions hailing from the Queen City.

As of right now Cincinnati feels like a football town. Nothing last forever, and this feeling could be short lived. But it is worth a little strut. From the high schools on Friday Night, to the College field on Saturday, to the pro ranks on Sunday right now WE OWN THE ENTIRE WEEKEND!

Take that Cleve Land and Columbus. You got nothing on us. Bunch of Sallys if you ask me. The Nati is where it is at.

And while I am running some smack up the flag pole, I wanted to add something about tOSU. They way they insist on saying "The Ohio State University" instead of Ohio State University is just gay. Nobody is impressed by that.

We now return you to our regularly scheduled programing. Sphere: Related Content

Friday, October 2, 2009

Tough History is Coming

From Tyler Durden at Zerohedge:

Visualizing The Upcoming Treasury Funding Crisis

Summary: foreign purchasers are congregating exclusively around the front end of the Treasury curve, meaning that the primary net purchaser of dated bonds has been the Federal Reserve. As everyone knows by now, the Fed only has $10 billion left out of the $300 billion total allotted for Treasury QE. That should expire next week. The question then becomes will we see another major steepening leg in the UST curve as yields on long-dated paper finally catch up to the real supply-demand curve absent the Fed's manipulation of the equilibrium point. Or will we see an outright funding crisis as foreigners pull out entirely of all treasury purchases, not just Long-term USTs.

The time of unravelling may be upon us sooner than most think.

Translation: Other countries don't want to buy our crap. They don't want to buy American bonds and invest in America anymore. They think it is a losing proposition. When they do buy, they buy short term on the front end, the don't want anything to do with long term.

In fact, The Fed is the one buying up all the bonds. And if you are like me, you probably figured the Fed was the one selling the bonds! It doesn't matter. The Fed, the Treasury, it is all one government (OUR GOVERNMENT!) and one currency, and when the shit hits the fan nobody will care. We are financing our debt by having the Treasury selling bonds to the Fed. Next they will tell you to finance your new car by having your left hand promise to pay your right hand.

That was a stupid analogy. But so what. If you read this you should realize that we are alone in a dark corner of the web. I mean you no harm, but tough history is coming.

But just as The Incredible Ginzu: But Wait! There is MORE!

From Doug Ross:

Analysts: Government borrowing will lead to 'Armageddon', 'Collapse of our Capitalistic System', '$5000 per ounce' gold

Financial gurus Henry Blodget, Marc Faber, Peter Schiff and Julian Robertson represent a wide spectrum of political opinion but are unified in their assessment of Democrat spending policies. Unprecedented government borrowing -- in a climate hostile to small business -- is hastening the "collapse" of capitalism.

Henry Blodget: "...the economy is being sustained by one huge borrower that is taking on debt faster than it has anytime since World War 2: The government. Government spending and government lending is REPLACING private spending and lending. And if it wasn't, the economy would have collapsed... The government can't keep borrowing like this forever, though, or we'll become Argentina. So the hope is that consumers and businesses will start borrowing BEFORE the government has to get itself under control. The history of financial crises suggests that this transition is unlikely to be smooth."

Don't Cry For Me Argentina! Tough History Is Coming. WOO HOO!

Marc Faber: "The future will be a total disaster, with a collapse of our capitalistic system as we know it today, wars, massive government debt defaults and the impoverishment of large segments of Western society."

Hard to improve on that! Tough History is Coming. Dance a jig!

Senate candidate Peter Schiff: "The worst is not over... the Dow will fall another 90% from current levels when measured against gold... gold [will hit] $5000 per ounce in the next couple of years..."

Peter Schiff is like a God to me. I wish he was the President. He predicted this crisis. Now Peter Schiff says that "the Dow will fall another 90% from current levels when measured against gold". I wish he was a crackpot like me. From my general experience with that man, he generally knows WTF he is talking about. Given that, I would say that Tough History Is Coming.

Julian Robertson: "You're in for some real rough sledding... we are borrowing so much money that we can't possibly pay it back... unless the Chinese and Japanese buy our bonds... it's tragic that we've let ourselves be put in this position... it's almost Armageddon if the Chinese and Japanese don't buy our debt. I don't know where we could get the money. And-- maybe we-- end up printing it-- and-- taking-- a million dollar bill-- bill to the grocery... which you have to do now in Zimbabwe. But I think we've let ourselves get in-- in [a] terrible situation... we're totally dependent on the Chinese and Japanese."

The reality is that we already owe so much money. It is an incredible sum. We can't really afford to pay it back. And we are borrowing at a pace never seen before. It is laughable to think that debt will be repaid.

The World Currency and Argentina

Argentina was one of the top 10 wealthiest nations in 1900. I have seen reports that put them at 4 or 5, though I read that some time ago and can't find a link. By the end of the century in 2000 they were bankrupt. Today they are around 35-40 range. It was an astounding fall, especially for a country with great people, infrastructure, natural resources and the like. The most striking aspect is that Argentina didn't play a part in either World War. What an ideal location. You are a wealthy country and World Wars don't even mean a damn to you. But yet they went from the top to the bottom. The government took over, and it can happen here too.

One ace in our hole is that the world currency is the US Dollar. We can print as much of the world currency as we like. At some point, those stupid bastards will reject our currency. That appears to be happening now. When that happens for a substantive amount of time, we will fail to be the world currency.

The problem Argentina had is that they couldn't print dollars. That is the main asset that is keeping us afloat. Our government is running the printing press and printing dollars for anyone that wants them. Argentina tried printing Pesos or some such things, but their debt was held in dollars. Who cares about Pesos when you need dollars? The great thing about out debt is that it is in dollars. And we get to print the dollars.

At some point soon, I predict the other players will clue into this critical flaw. It really is just paper with some green and black printing on it. I don't know why they took it so seriously. It was fun while it lasted.

Tough History is Coming.

My first post on this blog was from Peggy Noonan, and I don't even care for her much. Seems like an uppity bitch ass to me, but she wrote this:

A Separate Peace
America is in trouble--and our elites are merely resigned.

That link was the first post on this blog.

That piece haunts me to this day.

Tough history is coming. Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, October 1, 2009

More of Ayers, Obama and Jack Cashill

I have read my own blog. It seems that I am a one trick pony. Post after post about Barack Obama. I really need to mix it up. It appears that I am part of a pathetic echo chamber.

That said, I do what I do. I love my conspiracy theories. My favorite conspiracy theory is that Osama Bin Laden is dead. He really is. I would bet on that.

Another pet theory I have followed and am begining to believe is the Jack Cashill theory that Bill Ayers had a lot more input and linkage with Barack Obama than the media revealed to us.

From Ed Laskey at the American Thinker:

Obama's Work Ethic

Barack Obama won praise for Dreams From My Father, a 1995 memoir of his life that was published when he reached the grand old age of thirty-four. The provenance of the book has come into question, led by a series of American Thinker columns by Jack Cashill, who used textual analysis to ascribe its writing --or at least a good portion of it -- to Bill Ayers, Obama's neighbor, former Weatherman, Obama campaign supporter and partner in various activist groups in Chicago. This claim has been echoed in a new book by best-selling author Christian Andersen, Barack and Michelle: Portrait of an American Marriage who wrote that sources close to the Obamas told him that Barack Obama turned over his notes and tapes to Bill Ayers to compose the book.

Subsequently, under questioning by Cashill on a nationally-syndicated radio program, Andersen averred that two separate sources in Hyde Park confirmed to him the story of sending the notes and tapes to Ayers.

We still have the problem that Anderson won't come forward with his sources. If they exist, and I think they might, they would not want to come forward because they would be destroyed by the media. Our press loves the choosen one, and as Joe the Plumber can attest if you "speak truth to power" it is time to come and get your whoppin. I can see why they don't speak out on the record, but if they don't you have a very thin case.

The article isn't just about Obama/Ayers, there is much more interesting stuff at the link. Just wanted to highlight one thing for my own pet project.

On a related note, this from Thomas Lifson:

Unmasking Obama

It is now abundantly clear that the image of Barack Obama sold to the American electorate was tightly edited, air-brushed, and exaggerated. He has worn a series of masks -- eloquent orator, brilliant scholar, centrist, and literary sensation. All of these masks are coming off as he copes with a job for which image will not suffice. For instance, hiding behind the eloquent orator mask is a guy who says "uhh" a lot when he is winging it, and who makes lots of factual and grammatical mistakes.

Now, thanks to Jack Cashill, the literary mask has been removed. Obama is a literary pretender. Case closed. The evidence is overwhelming that Bill Ayers ghost-wrote Dreams from my Father, the book which established Obama's pose as a brilliant writer (and therefore a fine mind, in the estimation of many). The stylistic resemblance between the Dreams and Ayers' work is stunning. Now we know, thanks to Chris Andersen's new book,that Obama hit a brick wall trying to fulfill his contract to produce a book, and shipped off his notes and tapes to Ayers. That is the classic description of a ghost writer's assignment. And it completely fits the theories Cashill had inferentially reasoned from the data of his literary studies.

The revelation that Chris Andersen had two separate sources means that this fact meets the journalistic standard of reliability, provided by a respected, established bestselling author. Obama's dismissal of Ayers as "just a guy in the neighborhood" has been shown to be an outright lie.

That will certainly be the verdict of history, regardless of whether or not the issue of Obama's ghost written book ever breaks through into the national discussion. My bet is that the media will not be able to suppress discussion. The image of Obama packing boxes full of tapes and notebooks and hauling them over to Ayers' house a couple of blocks away, is simple and compelling evidence of a ghost writer being put to work. Jack's literary detective work made the case, and Andersen's two neighborhood sources confirm it.

Thomas Lifson lays it out quite well. Again, I don't know Anderson or anything about him. If he has any credibility, these charges are damning. I have read Cashill's work and have found it compelling.

And here is Jack Cashill on his interview with Anderson:

Andersen Claims'Two Sources' for Ayers' Role in Dreams

On Monday morning, Mancow Muller arranged for me to question author Chris Andersen on The Mancow Show.

Andersen's largely benign new book, Barack and Michelle: Portrait of an American Marriage, now tops the New York Times best seller list.

Andersen claims that the "hopelessly blocked" Obama turned to the unrepentant terrorist Bill Ayers to help him write his much acclaimed 1995 memoir, Dreams From My Father.

When I asked about Andersen's sources, Andersen said that he had two separate sources "within Hyde Park" but, understandably, would not elabora

Andersen, who was gracious throughout, insisted that he had made no claim that Ayers wrote Dreams but he did not deny Ayers' deep involvement, conceding that Dreams is much the better book than Obama's 2006 Audacity of Hope. This, of course, has to trouble the Obama acolytes who insist that Obama is a uniquely gifted writer.

"I've read Obama's books, and they are first-rate," wrote Christopher Buckley, explaining his decision to endorse Obama in October 2008, "He is that rara avis, the politician who writes his own books. Imagine."

Obama has maintained this fiction himself. "I've written two books," Obama told an audience of teachers in Virginia last year. "I actually wrote them myself."

Whether the mainstream media will remain silent on still another Obama scandal remains to be seen. But the journalistic standard of two sources has been met.

Again it comes down to the credibility of Anderson. I sound like a broken record with that. If this story gains any traction I would suspect that Anderson will be attacked.

Links both pro and con:


Bill Ayers: Not Just Another Guy In The Neighborhood

Building the perfect beast?

Did Young Barack Have a Ghostwriter?
Did an ex-Weatherman terrorist really write 'Dreams from My Father'? Dream on.

The ‘Bill Ayers Wrote Obama’s Memoir’ Train Rolls On

Media acolytes protect their man

I'm going to spend the rest of my life apologizing to Jack Cashill, aren't I?

Marathon Pundit:

Did Bill Ayers ghostwrite Obama's "Dreams from my Father?"

Time for me to get some rest. I will edit my typos in the morning. Or not.


Related Posts:

Jack Cashill Getting Traction (Ayers-Obama Authorship)

Dreams From My Ghost Writer? Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Still in Campaign mode.

Richard Cohen from The Washington Post speaks:

Time to Act Like a President

By Richard Cohen
Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Sooner or later it is going to occur to Barack Obama that he is the president of the United States. As of yet, though, he does not act that way, appearing promiscuously on television and granting interviews like the presidential candidate he no longer is. The election has been held, but the campaign goes on and on. The candidate has yet to become commander in chief.

It doesn't end there. He had a lot to say. Much of with I agree with. Sometimes Cohen rubs me the wrong way. Sometimes I think he is spot on. I respect him for that. He goes from asshole to kindred spirit on my meter, and sometimes his volume even goes up to 11. I liked the column and I recomend it.


The trouble with Obama is that he gets into the moment and means what he says for that moment only. He meant what he said when he called Afghanistan a "war of necessity" -- and now is not necessarily so sure. He meant what he said about the public option in his health-care plan -- and then again maybe not. He would not prosecute CIA agents for getting rough with detainees -- and then again maybe he would.

Most tellingly, he gave Congress an August deadline for passage of health-care legislation -- "Now, if there are no deadlines, nothing gets done in this town . . . " -- and then let it pass. It seemed not to occur to Obama that a deadline comes with a consequence -- meet it or else.

Obama lost credibility with his deadline-that-never-was, and now he threatens to lose some more with his posturing toward Iran.

I have constantly had the feeling that the campaign was never over. It is an uneasy feeling to have an American President still on the campaign trail. At some point he has to lead. It appears obvious to me that if both Richard Cohen and I can see eye to eye on this, we are not the only ones that feel this way.

Howard Fineman of Newsweek has this article:

The Limits of Charisma
Mr. President, please stay off TV.

As much as I respect Richard Cohen every now and then, I have to bear no such respect for Howard Fineman. But even he beats the drum:

If ubiquity were the measure of a presidency, Barack Obama would already be grinning at us from Mount Rushmore. But of course it is not. Despite his many words and television appearances, our elegant and eloquent president remains more an emblem of change than an agent of it. He's a man with an endless, worthy to-do list—health care, climate change, bank reform, global capital regulation, AfPak, the Middle East, you name it—but, as yet, no boxes checked "done." This is a problem that style will not fix. Unless Obama learns to rely less on charm, rhetoric, and good intentions and more on picking his spots and winning in political combat, he's not going to be reelected, let alone enshrined in South Dakota.

The president's problem isn't that he is too visible; it's the lack of content in what he says when he keeps showing up on the tube. Obama can seem a mite too impressed with his own aura, as if his presence on the stage is the Answer. There is, at times, a self-referential (even self-reverential) tone in his big speeches. They are heavily salted with the words "I" and "my." (He used the former 11 times in the first few paragraphs of his address to the U.N. last week.) Obama is a historic figure, but that is the beginning, not the end, of the story.

The article is shocking coming from Fineman. I never thought I would ever quote the man. I don't hold him in high regard. I quote him to say: "For the love of God, if Fineman can see it we have really hit the wall".

And bad news for Obama comes in threes for sure. Just when you thought it was bad for our Messiah, the fucking French even pile on. Here is Nicholas Sarkozy's take on our embattled savior:

French Atomic Pique
Sarkozy unloads on Obama's 'virtual' disarmament reality.

"We are right to talk about the future," Mr. Sarkozy said, referring to the U.S. resolution on strengthening arms control treaties. "But the present comes before the future, and the present includes two major nuclear crises," i.e., Iran and North Korea. "We live in the real world, not in a virtual one." No prize for guessing into which world the Frenchman puts Mr. Obama.

"We say that we must reduce," he went on. "President Obama himself has said that he dreams of a world without nuclear weapons. Before our very eyes, two countries are doing exactly the opposite at this very moment. Since 2005, Iran has violated five Security Council Resolutions . . .

"I support America's 'extended hand.' But what have these proposals for dialogue produced for the international community? Nothing but more enriched uranium and more centrifuges. And last but not least, it has resulted in a statement by Iranian leaders calling for wiping off the map a Member of the United Nations. What are we to do? What conclusions are we to draw? At a certain moment hard facts will force us to make decisions."

We thought we'd never see the day when the President of France shows more resolve than America's Commander in Chief for confronting one of the gravest challenges to global security. But here we are.

Getting undressed and flogged by the French President? Are you fucking serious?

But of course he is not serious. Obama probably has another campaign speech scheduled for tomorrow. Takes me back to Rudi's speach at the Convention. This man has never run a damn thing but a campaign. Never had to make a payroll. Never accomplished anything in his life outside of public office.

Obama really has no clue as to how the world works. I never thought I would miss George W. Bush. The so called: "Worst. President. Ever." suddenly looks like a lot better option than people believed at the time.

May God Bless us all. We are going to need it. Sphere: Related Content

Friday, September 25, 2009

Dreams From My Ghost Writer?

Say it ain't so Joe, Say it ain't so!

Is Obama a literary fraud? Can of worms reopened

By Nigel Horne

As well as providing juicy titbits about the Obama marriage, a new book supports the right-wing theory that the president needed help to produce ‘Dreams From My Father’

The long-held suspicion in American right-wing circles that Barack Obama was not the sole author - not even the lead author - of his brilliantly received 1995 memoir, Dreams From My Father, has been rekindled by the publication of a new book about the Obamas, Barack and Michelle: Portrait of an American Marriage.


the book has opened a can of worms concerning the provenance of Dreams From My Father. It appears to support the theory that Obama needed considerable help to produce Dreams - labeled by Time magazine "the best-written memoir ever produced by an American politician" - and yet has never owned up to using a ghost writer or even co-author

What can of worms would be opened up? Some of them might come crawling out of this exchange in a primary debate with George Stephanopolous when asked about Ayers:

OBAMA: George, but this is an example of what I'm talking about. This is a guy who lives in my neighborhood, who's a professor of English in Chicago who I know and who I have not received some official endorsement from. He's not somebody who I exchange ideas from on a regular basis.

And the notion that somehow as a consequence of me knowing somebody who engaged in detestable acts 40 years ago, when I was 8 years old, somehow reflects on me and my values doesn't make much sense, George

The whole equation would change if it could be proved that Ayers did substantial work on his famous and best selling book.

Nigel Horne continues...

Forget Dreams From My Father - a more accurate title might be Thoughts From My Neighbour.

The anecdotal evidence in Andersen's book - some of it thought to have come direct from Michelle Obama, though there is no proof of that - certainly supports Cashill. Amid the juicy morsels about Michelle and Barack's sometimes miserable marriage is a passage in which Andersen reveals how in the early 1990s Obama was under real pressure from his publishers to deliver the manuscript of Dreams.

Obama had been given the chance to write the memoir not because anyone thought he would one day be President of the United States, but because, in 1990, he became the first African-American to be elected president of the Harvard Law Review.

Simon & Schuster offered an advance of $125,000, but despite taking a holiday in Bali in an effort to get going on it, the contract had to be cancelled because Obama could not deliver.

A second publisher stepped in - the Time Books division of Random House - and it was their deadline that was looming when, according to Andersen's book, Michelle, fearing a second failure, suggested that Barack should seek the help of "his friend and Hyde Park neighbour Bill Ayers".

Obama had made taped interviews with relatives about his family history, and, according to Andersen, those "oral histories, along with a partial manuscript and a truckload of notes, were given to Ayers".

Andersen quotes a neighbour in the Hyde Park area of Chicago, where Obama and Ayers lived, who said of the two, "Everyone knew they were friends and that they worked on various projects together. It was no secret. Why would it be?"

Andersen concludes by saying: "In the end, Ayers's contribution to Barack's Dreams From My Father would be significant - so much so that the book's language, oddly specific references, literary devices, and themes would bear a jarring similarity to Ayers's own writing."

I have to add that at this point nothing has been proved, and I can't vouch for Michael Anderson. Somebody else that has inside information would have to go on the record, even if it is the same person who gave Anderson his information.

Jack Cashill has been working on this theory since last year. He has been dismissed by many. Andersen's account is the first big thing to come out to back him up, but the account of Andersen is unsourced, or at least poorly sourced. The whole thing still requires somewhat of a leap of faith, but the leap isn't as long as it was before.

Ron Radosh from Pajamas Media has this:

An Old Claim Arises Once More: Did Barack Obama Write ‘Dreams From My Father’?

Andersen Book Blows Ayers' Cover on 'Dreams' by Jack Cashill

American Thinker Articles by Jack Cashill

Jack Cashill's website

Jack Cashill interview on Breitbart TV

In dissent:

The ‘Ayers Wrote Obama’s Book’ Theorist Gets a Sympathizer
By David Weigel

Media Matters for America: Hannity, Andersen advance discredited claim that Ayers helped Obama pen his autobiography

Turns out I owe Jack Cashill an apology.

And Cashill's response:

Jack Cashill responds to suggestions that he is Chris Anderson’s source

Update: Somebody actually linked to one of my posts! Like citing me is something! WOO HOO!

Did Young Barack Have a Ghostwriter?
Did an ex-Weatherman terrorist really write 'Dreams from My Father'? Dream on.

Don't know much about Crawford Kilian, and Crawford doesn't believe a word of it, but at least it is a link! One link and already I am a total link whore.

I should say something bad about Crawford to encourgage more debate, but I don't have it in me. It seems he is a bit naive from reading his article. 'Why would Ayers do that?' seem naive. I think Ayers would like to enhance his own agenda and his power base, as well as make some money. Plenty of people Ghostwrite, and they all do it for a reason. Like Bill Ayers would somehow be above that.

Also see this post

More of Ayers, Obama and Jack Cashill

Jack Cashill Getting Traction (Ayers-Obama Authorship) Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Popular Mechanics interviews Dean Kamen

Inventor Dean Kamen Says Healthcare Debate "Backward Looking"

Some quotes:

Kamen: Well, I mean the whole supposition that "We have a crisis in healthcare." Our healthcare system has seen some of the greatest achievements of the human intellect since we started recording history: We're developing incredible devices and implantables to improve the quantity and quality of people's lives. We're developing pharmaceuticals that alleviate the need for surgery and eliminate the volatile effects of diseases. We're making the surgeries that are necessary ever less invasive. You can get a stent through your femoral artery all the way up into your heart and fix a blockage without surgery. I'd say, if we have a crisis, it's the embarrassment of riches. Nobody wants to deal with the fact that we're no longer in a world where you can simply give everybody all the healthcare that is available.

Each side of this debate has created the boogieman and monsters, like "We don't want let this program to come into existence because that will mean rationing." Well, I hate to tell you the news but as soon as medicine started being able to do incredible things that are very expensive, we started rationing. The reason 100 years ago everyone could afford their healthcare is because healthcare was a doctor giving you some elixir and telling you you'll be fine. And if it was a cold you would be fine. And if it turns out it was consumption; it was tuberculosis; it was lung cancer—you could still sit there. He'd give you some sympathy, and you'd die. Either way, it's pretty cheap.

We now live in a world where technology has triumphed, in many ways, over death. The problem with that is that it's enormously expensive. And big pharmaceutical giants and big medical products companies have stopped working on stuff that could be extraordinary because they know they won't be reimbursed, according to the common standards. We're not only rationing today; we're rationing our future.

We didn't use to have the options that we have today in healthcare. We have incredible technology. It doesn't come free.

The whole debate is twisted. These guys want you to be afraid this is going up. We should celebrate that. These guys say, "We don't want to ration." You're rationing now. The way to ration less is to make more good technical solutions.

Popular Mechanics: So you're saying that rather than trying so much to control costs, we should be encouraging new cures?

Kamen: Every drug that's made is a gift from one generation to the next because, while it may be expensive now, it goes off patent and your kids will have it essentially for free.

Whatever the marketplace, if talented people are given resources they're going to keep driving us to having better, simpler, cheaper solutions to problems. And, by the way, if they come up with a better solution but it can't be cheaper—which, in the beginning, most things aren't—nobody says you have to buy it. If you think this new drug is too expensive, it's not a good deal, we have a crisis, buy the old one. It's a generic now. It's cheap.

That is a great way of looking at it. Every expensive patent now is a "gift from one generation to the next". The expensive drugs today are the generics of the future. Brilliant simple truth that is easy for even me to understand.

I can't quote the entire article, but he also adds some forward thinking analysis of why health care costs can come down if we continue to invest in the future. I thought the interview was an excelllent take and I appreciate reading his viewpoint.

I also found this on Marginal Revolution

The cost of the Medicare prescription drug benefit

I would remind everyone of this recent research result:

In spite of its relatively low benefit levels, the Medicare Part D benefit generate $3.5 billion of annual static deadweight loss reduction, and at least $2.8 billion of annual value from extra innovation. These two components alone cover 87% of the social cost of publicly financing the benefit.

And here's another research result:

Overall, a $1 increase in prescription drug spending is associated with a $2.06 reduction in Medicare spending.

Both papers are from very reputable sources. Left-wingers focus on the "giveaways" in this plan and conservatives focus on the cost or maybe they don't walk to talk about it at all. It's a little late to go through all the usual pro and con arguments on the policy as a whole. I'd just like to note that -- relative to its reputation -- the Medicare prescription drug benefit is one of the most underrated government programs of our time. If the goal is to cut or check Medicare spending, and I think it should be, we should do it elsewhere in the program.

It's also possible that the prescription drug benefit will do more for peoples' health (as opposed to their financial security) than will the Obama plan.

I was not a fan of Medicare expansion under Bush. It was the largest expansion of government healthcare since the sixties. If Tyler Cowen likes it though, I could be wrong. And I bet if it is using free market forces to be effective, expect the current administration to shut it down like the DC Voucher program. Sphere: Related Content

Monday, September 21, 2009

ACORN Does Schools too...

This is an old Sol Stern Article on ACORN from the Spring 2003 issue of City Journal.

ACORN’s Nutty Regime for Cities

Stern gives a pretty full take down of Acorn in the article. He begins with the founders and the roots of the organization. He talks about their initial intent of overwhelming the system. They shockingly even organize and unionize welfare participants.

It is no surprise that ACORN preaches a New Left–inspired gospel, since it grew out of one of the New Left’s silliest and most destructive groups, the National Welfare Rights Organization. In the mid-sixties, founder George Wiley forged an army of tens of thousands of single minority mothers, whom he sent out to disrupt welfare offices through sit-ins and demonstrations demanding an end to the “oppressive” eligibility restrictions that kept down the welfare rolls. His aim: to flood the welfare system with so many clients that it would burst, creating a crisis that, he believed, would force a radical restructuring of America’s unjust capitalist economy.

and then this:

The biggest “but” of all has been ACORN’s effort to unionize “workfare” workers—welfare recipients who, under the terms of welfare reform, must put in a certain number of hours of work at city agencies in exchange for their benefits. Though it hasn’t gotten everything it wanted, ACORN has successfully agitated for the creation of workfare grievance processes in Los Angeles and New York, and it seeks to expand rights and entitlements on all workfare jobs. All these efforts are subversive of reform: they send exactly the wrong message to welfare recipients, who aren’t really workers bargaining with their employers, after all, but recipients of charity. Encouraging them to resist and resent those who seek to help them, to file grievances against them and to feel victimized by them, undermines workfare’s purpose of teaching discipline and good work habits to people often deficient in such skills, without which it is hard to take advantage of the abundant opportunity that American society offers. There is nothing progressive about such “help.”

It really is a radical organization. He also talks about some scary stuff about Acorn schools and indoctrination going on in their name in New York City. Bertha Lewis has been in the news lately because she is running the national organization. At this point back in 93 she was running New York City...

So who did profit? ACORN. Little appreciated was the crucial detail that ACORN itself is part of the failed bureaucratic system that any successful privatization program would unsettle. For more than a decade, ACORN has used foundation grants to start up its own New York public schools, something the Board of Ed sometimes allows community-based organizations to do. With warm-sounding names like the Bread and Roses High School, ACORN’s schools are political-indoctrination centers with mediocre academic records. Their curricula abound with “social justice” themes that wouldn’t be out of place at an ACORN community organizers’ training school. Bread and Roses, for example, holds an annual “Why Unions Matter” art project to “teach students how labor unions work and what they do to support social change, economic growth and democratic principles.” The schools have even bused kids to Washington to demonstrate against “tax cuts for the rich.”

In addition to its visceral antipathy to any for-profit entity and its fear that the schools run by Edison might look better to parents than its
own schools, ACORN had another ulterior motive for opposing any privatization experiment. ACORN has political ties with teachers’ unions—and they fiercely oppose privatization and vouchers in education, because these reforms might threaten union members’ jobs. It is fitting that leading the anti-Edison campaign was Bertha Lewis, New York ACORN chief and co-chair of the Working Families Party—fast becoming the key vehicle for advancing the political agenda of several of the city’s trade unions. Though ACORN sent hundreds of cadres to demonstrate outside Edison’s headquarters, it has never uttered an unkind word about the teachers’ unions, the main culprit in New York City’s educational failure.

Every recent opinion poll of inner-city parents reveals that the poor quality of the public school system is their Number One concern and that a large majority favor a voucher program to allow their children to opt for private or parochial schools. ACORN tells organizers like Heather Appell to take the pulse of the community; considering this mandate, it’s amazing how adamant ACORN’s leaders are in excluding the options of privatization or vouchers for school improvement.

I spoke to Bertha Lewis about her approach to school improvement. Our polite conversation took a nasty turn when I proposed that ACORN families might benefit by a voucher program for kids in failing schools. She launched into a tirade. Vouchers were just “a hoax to destroy the public schools,” she charged. The voucher movement wasn’t about education, but rather about “race and class.” “This is capitalism at its worst,” she shouted. “You always do it on the backs of the poor. It’s all bullshit, and you know it. I grew up in the ghetto. These vouchers are just a life raft for a few people to get out. It’s another education urban renewal plan. It’s gentrification.”

I can only imagine why anyone would want these people taking charge of schools and indoctrinating young children.

The more people shine the light on this organization the scarier it gets. Sphere: Related Content

Friday, September 18, 2009

The End Game on Health Care for Illegal Immigrants

Obama: Legalize illegals to get them health care

You won't have to worry about giving health care to illegal immigrants if you make them all legal.

I am kind of shocked that he was brazen enough to lay it all out like that. I would think it would be a political bombshell.

If you currently have health care, I believe the quality of your care will go down under the Obama plan. I also believe the costs will go up. Pay more for less, not a great situation. But at least you will be able to sleep well at night knowing that you are paying for the health care of illegal immigrants. What a winning combination.

I expect a backlash on this.

Captain Ed Morrissey opines

In other words, not only should everyone pay for Americans to get health care, we should pay for health care for those who came here illegally. That’s going to be a winning argument in 2010, especially in Blue Dog districts! We’re going to bust the budget and infringe on your personal choices, and we’re going to make you pay for insurance for illegal immigrants!

If a Republican had run an ad making those charges in 2008, the media would have called it a “smear”. If comedians used it in their act, it would have been a joke about GOP paranoia. The joke, unfortunately, is on those who voted for the Blue Dogs because of their supposed conservatism, and on those who voted for Obama because of his supposed centrism.


Wizbang's Kim Priestap

"Has your head exploded yet? It should be obvious to everyone by now that hope and change is nothing but leftist code for bait and switch."

Sister Toldjah

If illegals are thrown into the mix by becoming “legal” that is going to put even more of an unsustainable crush on our entire medical system, making the costs skyrocket and the quality drop dramatically.

Really. Does anyone in this adminstration think about what they’re advocating before they go about trying to sell it? Or does it matter anymore, since they think they can pretty much get away with anything?

Can they get away with this? I doubt it but we will see. Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Ghost Fleet of the Recession

Kind of sad and creepy:

Revealed: The ghost fleet of the recession anchored just east of Singapore

They are all out there alone. I bet they don't like the location being printed in the paper. If I was a pirate...

At night they light them all up, and from the shoreline it looks like a city on the water.

From the article:

The biggest and most secretive gathering of ships in maritime history lies at anchor east of Singapore. Never before photographed, it is bigger than the U.S. and British navies combined but has no crew, no cargo and no destination - and is why your Christmas stocking may be on the light side this year


It is so far off the beaten track that nobody ever really comes close, which is why these ships are here. The world's ship owners and government economists would prefer you not to see this symbol of the depths of the plague still crippling the world's economies.

So they have been quietly retired to this equatorial backwater, to be maintained only by a handful of bored sailors. The skeleton crews are left alone to fend off the ever-present threats of piracy and collisions in the congested waters as the hulls gather rust and seaweed at what should be their busiest time of year.
Local fisherman Ah Wat, 42, who for more than 20 years has made a living fishing for prawns from his home in Sungai Rengit, says: 'Before, there was nothing out there - just sea. Then the big ships just suddenly came one day, and every day there are more of them.

'Some of them stay for a few weeks and then go away. But most of them just stay. You used to look Christmas from here straight over to Indonesia and see nothing but a few passing boats. Now you can no longer see the horizon.'

Kind of depressing. I guess it costs too much money to keep them on a dock. I can only imagine how pissed the owners are that this article gets printed. Sphere: Related Content