The Commander in Chief of the world’s greatest military power seems hell bent on relinquishing that title. The latest on the chopping block are the Hellfire and Tomahawk missile programs. Obama seeks to cut all procurement of new Hellfire missiles from the Navy by 2015, and all new Tomahawks by 2016 — a seemingly inexplicable move considering Obama took so much credit for U.S. involvement in the Libya operation, which relied heavily on Tomahawk missiles.
This is just the latest in a long line of cuts to specific military programs which have occurred or will occur during Obama’s tenure. Now I’m not saying each and every cut was unwarranted, but here is what I know — when your budget has to be cut, you start by looking for way to cut spending with minimal impact to capabilities or quality of outcome.
I’ve worked in organizations funded by the government in the past. They are wasteful — there is no doubt about it. From the seemingly endless bureaucracy, to the fixed budgets that “HAVE to be spent,” the entire system has become a monolithic machine with the primary purpose of perpetuating its own existence. I remember computers and furniture being replaced well before it was necessary, simply because it was “a replacement year”. The old stuff taken to a warehouse and sold for pennies on the dollar.
So my beef isn’t with general cuts to the defense budget. I firmly believe that every single department of the U.S. government could find a way to cut at least 10% of its budget without firing a single person or diminishing the quality of the work or service provided.
I submit for your consideration Senator Coburn’s report on potentially over $60 billion in waste found at the DoD. I don’t know about anyone else, but if I needed to cut the defense budget I would start by rooting out waste and corruption! Then I would move on to other non-essentials, like parties and other perks. Then and only then would I start looking at specific programs.
But Obama and his ilk seem unconcerned with the billions of dollars disappearing in the bureaucratic ether. No doubt this is partly because exposing the waste will expose the very nature of massive bureaucracy, thereby severely weakening the “moral authority of modern big government” which progressives have been diligently creating for the last decade.
But I think something else is going on. Obama’s move to kill off the programs which allowed him to execute the Libya operation without U.S. troop involvement is very telling. Obama specifically seeks to diminish the United States’ ability to execute military operations. Hagel wants to cut the Army to levels not seen since before WWII. The administration has also killed or hamstrung the Air Force’s F35 joint strike fighter, the Navy’s next generation cruiser, and the Marine Corps’ next generation EFV.
Dinesh Dsouza essentially predicted this. He believes Obama is an anti-colonialist who sees the USA as somewhat of a bad guy on the world stage, and the U.S. military as the tool enabling the “bad actions”. Bathed in this light, Obama’s actions make sense.
If you haven’t seen him before, I introduce you to Michael Che. Saw him on one of my DVR’d episodes of Late Night with Seth Meyers. Personally, I think he was funnier than the host.
This is a great bit. The perfect kind of comedy. Sort of a-political, sort of libertarian, very cool. Very refreshing to see a black comedian address the out-of-hand political correctness and fake racism permeating our culture.
Back in 2008, following Obama’s less than compelling reaction on the campaign trail to Russia invading neighboring Georgia, Sarah Palin remarked that Ukraine could be next. The left attacked her, mocked her, called her comments “strange” and “far-fetched”.
Today, the scenario is very real. Russia’s puppet parliament just voted unanimously to approve military action against Ukraine. This after paramilitary forces, likely of Russian origin and backing, have already seized government buildings and airports within the Crimean region of Ukraine.
Which means, all those fawning, sycophantic, Obama-protecting liberals… all those self-righteous, self-described “experts” on foreign policy… all those talking heads on the television were WRONG.
Sarah Palin was right, folks.
I wonder which of those supposed experts has the guts to admit it.
Chris “thrill up my leg” Matthews recently pointed out that Democrats will consider 2014 a good election if they only lose five seats, but that they could potentially lose 10 seats.
If Matthews is bringing this up, you know it’s bad news for the Democrats. So let’s have a look at how 2014 is shaping up:
- In 2014, there are 21 Democrat races to only 14 Republican races
- Only one Republican race is in a 2012 blue state (Maine), while seven Democrat races are in 2012 red states
- Two of the Democrat races in 2012 blue states are open (no incumbent running)
- In 2010, Democrats lost three seats in blue states (Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Illinois), while only holding one seat in a red state (West Virginia). It’s worth noting that one seat was Joe Manchin, who some would certainly call Democrat-lite.
If the NAACP was ever actually an organization dedicated to the advancement of colored people, I am certainly too young to remember. Throughout my adult life it seems the NAACP is nothing more than a mouthpiece for the liberal/progressive political wing. If “colored people” happen to align with their politics, great. But anything not part of the official Democrat platform is ignored or outright opposed.
A great example of this last is the NAACP opposition to school choice laws, which have been shown as fairly successful for black children in many communities. You would think an organization supposedly dedicated to helping advance black people would actually want to help advance black children, but since Democrats oppose school choice, you would be wrong to assume so.
In the latest bit of whacky weirdness, the NAACP organized a march to protest voter ID laws. Prior to the march, they distributed a flyer with DOs and DON’Ts. One of the DOs? “Bring photo identification and keep it on you at all times”
In my present state of mind, I am beyond the point of feeling angry about this. The hypocrisy among political power players is so rampant, so obvious, so egregious that I just can’t help but laugh.
Maybe I am laughing the laugh of the damned.
Before the two best teams in the NFL squared off against one another, two political titans entered their own arena to do battle. Here are my five takeaways from the Obama / O’Reilly Super Bowl interview.
1. The entire Obama administration is technologically naive
O’Reilly pressed Obama on the botched Obamacare rollout. Obama repeated multiple times:
“I don’t think anybody anticipated the degree of problems”
Really? Nobody in the entire administration anticipated these problems? I find this incredibly difficult to believe. I work in the web industry. I develop web applications used by hundreds of thousands and even millions of people. I can tell you from personal experience that if my deadline was approaching and the product was not ready, I would be in regular communications with the client discussing crisis mode options.
CGI Federal has taken a lot of heat for the botched rollout. Some of that they deserve, no doubt. But I suspect the #1 problem was a terrible set of specifications delivered from the government. Poor specifications leads to poor product. I also suspect that the middlemen within the Administration did not possess enough tech knowledge to comprehend the extent of the disastrous rollout.
“[Nobody] anticipated the degree of problems.” Obama’s own words. I expected more from the supposedly “most tech-savvy administration in history.”
2. Holding people accountable is now officially meaningless
O’Reilly challenged Obama on Kathleen Sebelius’ continued employment. O’Reilly clearly believes she failed and she should go. I happen to agree. However, Obama’s reassures us:
I promise you that we hold everybody up and down the line accountable.
Okay, but what does this mean? Obama has told us before that he holds people accountable. Other than General Stanley McChrystal, who has Obama actually fired? Only a select few have even resigned.
In the Obama administration, you can oversee the Fast and Furious scandal, lie about the cause of the attack in Benghazi, lie to Congress about the government’s data-collection policies, and even botch the rollout of the President’s signature legislation and your job is secure. But dare to mock Joe Biden and you’re fired!
The following is a conversation with a welfare mother who called in to a radio show. If you haven’t heard it, you must listen. The woman describes how she can smoke marijuana, sit around doing nothing all day, and the checks come every month. Words cannot adequately describe, you must hear it for yourself.
UPDATE: A reader discovered a source saying this was false. Not exactly a hoax, but apparently the woman called back again and said she had been on welfare, but was off it, and was incensed others didn’t do the same. Also that she invented the original story to raise awareness. Now I am left wondering if the retraction is true, or merely the result of worrying that some government official would come after her now that she embarrassed the system. A person who has been on welfare and successfully gotten off it could surely come up with better ways to raise awareness for the PROS and CONS of welfare than by concocting a story which only highlights the CONS of the system.
If any body else finds more to this story, let me know.
Video after the jump because it auto-plays.
A week or so ago, President Obama made headlines by declaring he’s “got a pen” and “got a telephone” and calling 2014 a year of action! My first thought was, “Gee, Batman must be jealous of your high tech gadgets Mr. President.” My second thought was that Obama was actually threatening to bypass the Constitutional role of Congress by acting unilaterally wherever possible.
In case there was any doubt about the President’s commitment to Executive action, the White House has doubled down on its promise to circumvent Congress.
One of the many interesting sub-plots of the 2014 election year is the possibility that Congress may welcome its first openly gay Republican.
Dan Innis is running for a House seat in New Hampshire. He is a businessman, entrepreneur, Dean of the Whittemore School of Business and Economics, and is married to a man. It was his husband who convinced him to run, saying “You’ve got to do this” to see if Innis could “make a difference.”
Richard Tisei is running again for a House seat in Massachusetts. He lost by just 1 point in the general election to John Tierney, and will face him again this time around. He has already served as a state senator. He is also married to a man.
Carl DeMaio is running for a House seat in California. He is a businessman who provided training and consulting specifically to financially-troubled government entities to help them become more efficient. He has also served as a city councilman for San Diego. At the time of writing this I do not know if DeMaio is married to his partner, but it is my understanding they have been together for six years.
None of these men are making their sexuality part of their campaign. It will be interesting to see what the liberals do, should these men make it through the GOP primaries. Kevin has often pointed out that liberals reveal their ultimate hypocrisy when faced with an opponent who would traditionally be a liberal. As a living example, DeMaio and his partner were booed while walking in the Gay Pride parade, because DeMaio is a Republican and was running for Mayor.
As President Obama rolls out his poorly-named “Promise Zones” (sounds like something a male adolescent would come up with to name a body part), progressives around the nation are simultaneously pushing for higher minimum wage — places like New York, Detroit, and SeaTac have recently had protests and/or legislation passed over higher minimum wage, just to name a few. And the U.S. Senate has mentioned a “$10-ish” federal minimum wage. By the way, it’s not just progressive liberals pushing for it — in Washington state, a self-described Republican is pushing for $15/hour minimum wage. The article calls him a “conservative”, but we all recognize his progressive ideology.
“Income inequality” is shaping up to be the big 2014 liberal campaign platform. The progressives want to re-frame the debate as a humanitarian rather than an economic one. Democrats hope they can ride this horse to victory, and probably even keep riding it through 2016. Never mind the fact that they are essentially admitting to buying votes.
In any free market system, the cost of labor is an input which impacts the final price of goods sold and services rendered. By artificially inflating minimum wage, Democrats promise us a better life for those at the bottom of the wage scale, but the tradeoff a higher cost to produce goods and services. This increase in cost will work its way into the economy in one of three main ways:
- Higher prices for consumers to obtain a good or service (essentially a hidden tax on consumption)
- Less innovation and production and employment growth, due to more business resources being allocated to existing labor
- Lost jobs due to companies moving production overseas, or in the case of business that can’t move overseas, more automation or just plain lower quality of service
Additionally, when minimum wage goes up, it tends to drive all wages up across the board. This exacerbates the above outcomes across the entire economy.
When fast-food workers in 100+ cities went on strike a few weeks ago, they probably never thought their jobs were replaceable. After all, how do you make food without humans? May I present to you, the robot that makes nearly 400 burgers an hour: