The ‘Hunger’ Hoax

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell

by Thomas Sowell –
Twenty years ago, hysteria swept through the media over “hunger in America.”

Dan Rather opened a CBS Evening News broadcast in 1991 declaring, “one in eight American children is going hungry tonight.” Newsweek, the Associated Press and the Boston Globe repeated this statistic, and many others joined the media chorus, with or without that unsubstantiated statistic.

When the Centers for Disease Control and the Department of Agriculture examined people from a variety of income levels, however, they found no evidence of malnutrition among those in the lowest income brackets. Nor was there any significant difference in the intake of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients from one income level to another.

That should have been the end of that hysteria. But the same “hunger in America” theme reappeared years later, when Senator John Edwards was running for Vice President. And others have resurrected that same claim, right up to the present day. [Read more…]

The Democrats’ Invincible Ignorance

Democrats Lemmings Ignorance by Paul Kengor –

I’ve only recently come to realize the nature of the hurdle this country faces in trying to turn around a stalled economy and horrendous deficit. Here it is: liberal Democrat politicians have completely convinced huge numbers of their followers that our economic/fiscal mess is the result of two principal demons: 1) “the rich,” and 2) the Tea Party. The former, of course, has been a longtime liberal scapegoat; the latter is a new one.

Note that I use the word “followers.” That’s because I’m hearing from a disturbingly high number of people who apparently buy the Democratic Party line with no question whatsoever. They exhibit a remarkable, frightful willingness to act against their own interests in blind service to partisanship and ideology. It’s like a mass self-flagellation. [Read more…]

British Degeneracy on Parade

British Violence Moral Failure by Theodore Dalrymple

The ferocious criminality exhibited by an uncomfortably large section of the English population during the current riots has not surprised me in the least. I have been writing about it, in its slightly less acute manifestations, for the past 20 years. To have spotted it required no great perspicacity on my part; rather, it took a peculiar cowardly blindness, one regularly displayed by the British intelligentsia and political class, not to see it and not to realize its significance. There is nothing that an intellectual less likes to change than his mind, or a politician his policy.

Three men were run over and killed as they tried to protect their property in the very area of Birmingham in which I used to work, and through which I walked daily; the large town that I live near when I’m in England has also seen rioting. Only someone who never looked around him and never drew any conclusions from the faces and manner of the young men he saw would have been surprised. [Read more…]

Couretas: Protect the Poor, Not Poverty Programs

John Couretas

John Couretas

by John Couretas

One of the disturbing aspects of the liberal/progressive faith campaign known as the Circle of Protection is that its organizers have such little regard – indeed are blind to — the innate freedom of the human person.

Their campaign, which has published “A Statement on Why We Need to Protect Programs for the Poor,” equates the welfare of the “least of these” in American society to the amount of assistance they receive from the government — a bizarre view from a community that trades in spiritual verities. Circle of Protection supporters see people locked into their circumstances, stratified into masses permanently in a one-down position, thrown into a class struggle where the life saving protection of “powerful lobbies” is nowhere to be found. And while they argue that budgets are moral documents, their metrics for this fiscal morality are all in dollars and cents. [Read more…]

Obama Downgraded, Tea Party Vindicated

Obama Fail Downgradedby Peter Ferrara

President Obama achieved the historic downgrading of America’s credit rating the old-fashioned way. He earned it.

He came into office with federal spending already near an historic peak, with a percent of GDP at 20.7 percent and having increased by one-seventh during the Bush years. One year earlier Bush had joined with then House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to enact a pointless Keynesian stimulus package of $168 billion, which the record will show created exactly 0.00 jobs, and stimulated nothing but national debt.

Send In the Clowns
Barack Obama​ surveyed the continuing wreckage of the financial crisis, and decided to follow the advice of the reknowned economist Otter, “who famously said in ‘Animal House​,’ this situation ‘absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture be done on somebody’s part,'” as quoted by Andy Kessler in Monday’s Wall Street Journal. [Read more…]

America: Time to Start Over

Liberty Crying America Crumblingby Matt Patterson –
This must have been what it was like living in the 1930s: politicians running around, fingers in their ears, unwilling or unable to confront a rising conflagration that they helped to light.

Back then, the threat came from a revivified and revanchist Germany. Western leaders stood by while the Germans rearmed, then looked the other way as ever larger chunks of the Continent fell to the blitzkrieg. When the enervated Western elites finally took a stand over Poland, it was too late — the fire was so large that, by the time it was finally quenched, the world lay in smoldering ruin.

Today we face a different, though no less mortal, sort of threat: the wealth of the West has been revealed to be largely illusory, built on the foolish foundations of credit that shift and scatter like sands in the wind. [Read more…]

A Fling with the Welfare State

Welfare State Democrats Obamaby Noemie Emery –
From the best of intentions to bankruptcy and recriminations

The intentions of Democrats are only the best. They want all of the old to have lavish retirements, all of the young to have scholarships, verse-penning cowboys to have festivals funded by government, and everyone to have access to all the best health care, at no cost to himself. In the face of a huge wave of debt swamping all western nations, this is the core of their argument: They want a fair society, and their critics do not; they want to help, and their opponents like to see people suffer; they want a world filled with love and caring, and their opponents want one of callous indifference, in which the helpless must fend for themselves. (“We must reject both extremes, those who say we shouldn’t help the old and the sick and those who say that we should,” quips the New Yorker’s Hendrik Hertzberg.) But in fact, everyone thinks that we “should” do this; the problem, in the face of the debt crisis, is finding a way that we can. It is about the “can” part that the left is now in denial: daintily picking its way through canaries six deep on the floor of the coal mine, and conflating a “good” with a “right.” [Read more…]

Obama Redefining ‘Poverty’

by David Paulin –
What does it mean to be poor in America today? For typical “poor” households — as defined by the government — it means cable television, two color television sets, and two or more cars.

As for housing, it means living in air-conditioned comfort — in decent accommodations with even more space than “average” Europeans have. (Not poor Europeans, to be sure, but “average” Europeans.) Moreover, most “poor” Americans get the medical care they need, and they eat enough — in fact, they eat too much. [Read more…]

Economic Slavery: Modern-Day Indentured Servitude

Economic Slavery Indentured Servitude by Frank Ryan –
The “tax the rich” hysteria gripping this nation is absolute insanity. Cries to raise taxes on those with incomes over $250,000 or some other magical number are unbelievable.

As a CPA, I find the “tax the rich” schemes to be pure junk science. To that end, the illogical precepts underpinning these arguments must be exposed. (Incidentally, by way of full disclosure, I would not be personally affected by these tax increases. I merely want to expose the scheme for the fraud that it is.)

Many in Congress have attempted to make earning an income distasteful, so those pitiable enough to earn an income are subjected to public scorn. Politicians and many in the media are collectively pushing policies to “punish those people” by taxing them into economic slavery and involuntary servitude. [Read more…]

Shovel-Ready Punch Line

Obama Shovel Readyby Jonah Goldberg –
“Shovel-ready was not as … uh … shovel-ready as we expected,” Barack Obama joked the other day at a meeting of his Council on Jobs and Competitiveness.

Republicans jumped on Obama’s comment as insensitive. “He joked about the wildly mistaken predictions he and others at the White House made a couple of years back about the job-creating potential of the stimulus,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. “Well, I don’t think the 14 million Americans who are looking for jobs right now find any of this very funny.”

I’m sure they don’t, but the fact that the president laid an egg when he tried to be self-deprecating isn’t the scandal here.

After all, Obama has pretty much said the same thing several times. In a New York Times magazine profile last October, the president admitted he had to learn the hard way that there’s “no such thing as shovel-ready projects.” [Read more…]

Dependency and Votes

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell

by Thomas Sowell –

Those who regard government “entitlement” programs as sacrosanct, and regard those who want to cut them back as calloused or cruel, picture a world very different from the world of reality.

To listen to some of the defenders of entitlement programs, which are at the heart of the present financial crisis, you might think that anything the government fails to provide is something that people will be deprived of.

In other words, if you cut spending on school lunches, children will go hungry. If you fail to subsidize housing, people will be homeless. If you fail to subsidize prescription drugs, old people will have to eat dog food in order to be able to afford their meds.

This is the vision promoted by many politicians and much of the media. But in the world of reality, it is not even true for most people who are living below the official poverty line. [Read more…]

It’s Official: The Left Is Out of Ideas

by Peter Heck –
With a little over a year to go until the next national election cycle is complete, it has become apparent that from an economic standpoint, the SS Liberal has officially run out of steam. Hull weighted down with the barnacles of false promises and rudder crippled by the reckless mismanagement of a spendthrift captain from Chicago, she sits there floundering in a sea of unemployment and malaise not experienced since Jimmy Carter was at the helm.

And despite all the rosy window dressing provided by the beaming ship attendants of the mainstream media, who pretend to be shocked every time another leak opens up, we passengers are fully aware of our surroundings. [Read more…]

Economics 101

Economics 101by David Solway –

It’s really very simple. One does not need to take a graduate course in Economics to figure out why a productive society prospers and how it can be destroyed. As Tim Harford explains in The Undercover Economist, “Economics is partly about modeling, about articulating basic principles and patterns that operate behind seemingly complex subjects.” The key word is “seemingly.” The other part of Economics is plain common sense—the part which all too many economists refuse to practice since it deprives them of shamanistic status as delvers into realms of mystical complexity. Paul Krugman comes immediately to mind. “[I]ncreased government spending,” pontificates The New York Times guru, “is just what the doctor ordered, and concerns about the budget deficit should be put on hold.” One may be pardoned for thinking that it is Krugman who should be put on hold. [Read more…]

We’ve Become a Nation of Takers, Not Makers

America in Trouble Liberty Cryingby Stephen Moore –
If you want to understand better why so many states—from New York to Wisconsin to California—are teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, consider this depressing statistic: Today in America there are nearly twice as many people working for the government (22.5 million) than in all of manufacturing (11.5 million). This is an almost exact reversal of the situation in 1960, when there were 15 million workers in manufacturing and 8.7 million collecting a paycheck from the government.

It gets worse. More Americans work for the government than work in construction, farming, fishing, forestry, manufacturing, mining and utilities combined. We have moved decisively from a nation of makers to a nation of takers. Nearly half of the $2.2 trillion cost of state and local governments is the $1 trillion-a-year tab for pay and benefits of state and local employees. Is it any wonder that so many states and cities cannot pay their bills? [Read more…]

Democrats Derelict in Duties to Pass 2011 Budget

Federal Budgets Under Democrat Control of Congress

Federal Budgets Under Democrat Control of Congress

by Chris Banescu –

The reason the United States Congress still does not have a budget in place for 2011 (even though the law required it to be passed by October 1, 2010) is due to the Democrats failure to act and do their jobs, despite being in complete control of both houses of Congress and the White House last year. The Democrats have abandoned their responsibilities to the country and are derelict in their duties.

Over at the American Thinker Blog, in a post titled: “Shutdown? Why are we still discussing the 2011 budget?“, Greg Richards summarized the shameless behavior of the Democrats and their utter failure to fulfill their Constitutionally mandated roles as representatives of all the citizens in this country. [Read more…]