Observing The Double Standard

It’s always interesting to see how the press covers the occasional misdeeds of our political leaders. Recently, however, it has reached the point of absurdity. Jonah Goldberg posted an article at National Review Online today which showed some concrete examples of the double standard at work.

One of the recent examples is the attack on GOP House whip Steve Scalise because he spoke to a group of racists twelve years ago. No one seems to care what he said–so far I have seen no record of his comments–the uproar is because he addressed the group. Representative Scalise claims that he had no idea what the view of the group were (there was no ‘google’ then). But let’s look on the other side. The article points out:

Barack Obama was friends with a domestic terrorist, Bill Ayers. His spiritual mentor was a vitriolic racist, Jeremiah Wright. One of his administration’s closest advisers and allies is Al Sharpton, a man who has inspired enough racial violence to make a grand dragon’s white sheets turn green with envy.

Meanwhile, the Democratic party venerated the late senator Robert Byrd, a former Klansmen himself. He was one of 19 senators (all Democrats) to sign the Southern Manifesto opposing integration. One of his co-signers was William Fulbright, Bill Clinton’s mentor.

People in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.

There are other examples in the article:

Peaceful, law-abiding tea-party groups who cleaned up after their protests — and got legal permits for them — were signs of nascent fascism lurking in the American soul. Violent, anarchic, and illegal protests by Occupy Wall Street a few years ago or, more recently, in Ferguson, Mo., were proof that a new idealistic generation was renewing its commitment to idealism.

When rich conservatives give money to Republicans, it is a sign that the whole system has been corrupted by fat cats. When it is revealed that liberal billionaires and left-wing super PACs outspent conservative groups in 2014: crickets.

That is just the way the mainstream media sees and reports it. Remember this as we go into the 2016 election season. Don’t believe everything you hear.

A Chilling Thought

On Friday, John Fund posted a very interesting article at the National Review Online. The article deals with the behavior of the National Park Rangers during the shutdown. On Wednesday the House Oversight Committee began an investigation into that behavior.

The article reports a very obvious question asked by Representative Trey Gowdy of South Carolina:

Gowdy wanted to know why Jarvis had allowed “pot-smoking” Occupy Wall Street protesters to camp overnight illegally in Washington’s McPherson Square park for 100 days, yet put up barricades to keep veterans out of war memorials on the first day of the shutdown. By not issuing a single citation to the Occupy campers, Gowdy argued, the Park Service was treating them better than the nation’s military veterans. “Can you cite me the regulation that required you to erect barricades from accessing a monument that they built?” he demanded.

…Representative Darrell Issa was equally stern with Jarvis, noting that, since the Park Police weren’t furloughed during the shutdown, “an open-air monument was guarded by the same number of people to prevent Americans from getting in as would allow them to safely go in and out.”

The article goes on to list some of the more bizarre closings during the government shutdown. Please follow the link above to read the list.

The article concludes:

But now that the shutdown is over, it’s important for Chairman Issa and others to figure out how it was manipulated politically. Because if the Park Service can become a pawn in the Obama administration’s political wars, does anyone doubt that the integrity of other even more vital agencies wouldn’t be at risk in any future budget showdown?

The fact that the signs closing the parks appeared so rapidly (have you ever tried to get the government to do anything quickly?) and the way the Park Rangers behaved convinces me that this was a planned event by the Obama Administration. Frankly I think the shutdown was used to manipulate the American people, and we fell for it. Hopefully many of us will begin to ask why the Park Rangers followed the orders to make the shutdown uncomfortable for average Americans and how the signs appeared so quickly. I think we were played as fools.



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About That Unequal Distribution of Wealth Thing

When Occupy Wall Street was protesting, one of its claims was that the ‘fat cats’ on Wall Street were getting richer while everyone else was getting poorer. They claimed to be fighting for a more equitable distribution of wealth. Of course, corporations have always been charged with overpaying their executives while underpaying those in the lower levels of the work force. However, in these protests, one area of ‘unequal distribution of wealth’ has been overlooked.

Today’s Washington Examiner posted an article about the increases in the pay for union leaders that is occurring as union membership decreases.

The article reports:

The only thing keeping Big Labor from becoming an incidental factor in the American workplace is that government employees are five times more likely to be unionized than those in the private sector.

The article further states:

A total of 428 private sector union leaders were paid at least $250,000 annually, and the top 100 of those made more than $350,000, according to a study of Department of Labor data by Media Trackers, a conservative, nonprofit investigative watchdog group. The highest-paid union leaders work for organized professional athletes, with G. William Hunter, executive director of the National Basketball Players Association, who received $3.2 million. The only government employee union leader in the top 10 is Gerald McEntee, international president of the Association of Federal, State, County and Municipal Employees, whose $1.2 million compensation put him fourth on the list.

I have no problem with people being compensated for what they do, but if you are going to complain about what corporate executives earn, you need to also look at what union leaders are paid.

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When You Lie Down With Dogs You Get Up With Fleas

Many leaders in the Democrat Party have been quick to endorse the ‘values’ expressed in the Occupy Wall Street protests. The Occupy protests were supposed to be the balance to the Tea Party. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out that way.

There were significant differences between Occupy and the Tea Party from the start. The demographic on Occupy tended to be under the age of 30 and unemployed. There were exceptions, but generally, that is the age group involved. The Tea Party tended to be over the age of 45 and often of retirement age. The Tea Party appeared in response to the vote on Obamacare when many citizens felt their wishes were totally ignored. I am not sure if there was a specific event that spawned Occupy.

A website called Anguished Repose illustrates one other difference:

That difference was also evident in Oakland, California, last night. The Blaze reported today that:

Between 100 and 200 Occupy protesters marched through downtown Oakland, Calif. Friday night, smashing several car windows and the glass front of President Barack Obama’s local campaign office, according to media reports.

I thought Occupy and the Democrats were on the same side. It is possible that the anarchists that make up Occupy simply enjoy destroying things?

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I Am Glad That The Unions Are Helping People Find Work

Yesterday’s Daily Caller posted an article and a video about the Occupy Protesters at the Conservative Political Action Convention (CPAC). Occupy Wall Street had said last week that they would be protesting CPAC, so the protesters were not unexpected.

However, the video is a bit of a surprise. One protester is asked whet he is protesting–he has no idea. Another protester explains that the local union offered him $60 to protest and since he has been out of work for a long time, he accepted the offer. He also has no idea what he is protesting–he simply needs the work!

There is nothing illegal about what the union is doing–protesters can be paid or unpaid. However, I have been to a few tax day protests by the Tea Party, and I can assure you that no one there was getting paid. I think it says something that the left has to pay its protesters (and that they have no idea what they are protesting) and the right protests for free and can articulate their cause (less government, lower taxes, and a return to the U.S. Constitution).

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It’s Getting Hard To Sort The Truth From The Spin

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The Republican primary race seems to have come down to a contest between Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich. I am totally willing to admit, political junkie that I am, that I haven’t made up my mind yet. I am willing to admit that I think that both leading candidates have totally forgotten President Reagan’s Eleventh Commandment.

There are a few things I am watching in deciding who will get my support–who is supporting each candidate and who is opposing each candidate. It was obvious at the start of the campaign that the Obama campaign was preparing for Mitt Romney as their opponent. Romney was ‘the next in line’ which, unfortunately, seems to be the way the Republicans choose their candidates. It doesn’t work very well, but they keep doing it. The Occupy Wall Street movement was the perfect prelude to a campaign against Mitt Romney–the man is obviously wealthy–he has worked hard and accomplished many things to obtain that wealth, but an opposing campaign could overlook that and just characterize him as the ‘evil rich.’ Governor Romney seems to be the choice of the Republican ‘establishment.’ Newt Gingrich is the rebel candidate. He has been knocked down twice already and just seems to bounce back up. He seems to be the Tea Party candidate (although I seriously doubt he was their first choice). Newt is a bit of a loose cannon, but seems to have an ability to explain things so that ordinary people can understand them and to get things done (although he steps on peoples’ feet in the process). As I have posted earlier, the ethics charges against him in the mid 1990’s were later proven to be completely false by the IRS. I believe he was run out of the House of Representatives on a rail (so to speak) because he was a threat to both the Republican and Democrat Washington establishment. If he can make that case to the public, he will win the nomination and the election.

On Friday, January 27, Newsmax.com posted a short article discussing some of the attacks on Newt Gingrich. Ronald Reagan’s eldest son Mike Reagan has issued a statement regarding the claim that Newt Gingrich did not support Ronald Reagan.

The article posted the statement:

I am deeply disturbed that supporters of Mitt Romney are claiming that Newt Gingrich is not a true Reaganite and are even claiming that Newt was a strong critic of my father.

“Recently I endorsed Newt Gingrich for president because I believe that Newt is the only Republican candidate who has both consistently backed the conservative policies that my father championed and the only Republican that will continue to implement his vision.

“It surprises me that Mitt Romney and his supporters would raise this issue — when Mitt by his own admission said he opposed my father in the 1980s claiming he was an ‘independent,’ and later supported liberal Democrat Paul Tsongas for president.

“As governor of Massachusetts, Romney’s achievement was the most socialistic healthcare plan in the nation up until that time.

“Say what you want about Newt Gingrich but when he was Speaker of the House he surrounded himself with Reagan conservatives and implemented a Ronald Reagan program of low taxes and restrained federal spending.

“Newt’s conservative program created a huge economic boom and balanced the budget for the first time in more than a generation.”

Mike Reagan concluded: “I would take Newt Gingrich’s record any day over Mitt Romney’s.”

Beware of the spin! Listen to the people who are closest to the events and have nothing to gain or lose by telling the truth.


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We Need To Stop Screaming About Wall Street Greed And Start Screaming About College Greed

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Yesterday The Daily posted an article about the rising cost of a college education. The numbers are startling. The class of 2034 faces a college bill for a top college of $422,320 in today’s dollars.

The article reports:

The Daily analyzed historical, inflation-adjusted price data from the College Board to see what a bachelor’s degree might cost the class of 2034 in 2011 dollars. The result: Total tuition and fees would top $232,000 for an average-priced four-year private college and nearly $81,000 at an average-priced public university — up 111 percent and 167 percent, respectively, from the average class of 2012 tuition.

Room and board brings the average price of a four-year college education up to a projected $288,000 in 2011 dollars for four years beginning in 2030 at an average private school and $123,000 at an average public school. The class of 2012 paid about $149,195 for a private school and $64,591 at a public university, according to College Board data.

The solution to this problem is NOT government regulation or intervention. This is a case where the free market will actually correct itself (if allowed to). The government has intervened with financial aid programs and loan programs that have allowed tuition and costs to be raised, but as the Occupy Wall Street people complained, it has also caused many students to graduate from college with crippling debt. The free market correction, if it is allowed to occur, will be fewer students going to the more expensive colleges and those colleges being forced to cut their budgets and their tuition. Unfortunately, the student loan and grant programs, as much as they allowed lower-income students to attend college (a good thing), also resulted in inflated tuition costs. It’s time to let the free market bring balance back to the cost of a college education. 

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Exactly What Did Jesus Stand For ?

The Archbishop of Canterbury has stated that Jesus would be part of the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) movement. That is an amazing statement to me.

Poverty is not anything new, nor is it the responsibility of or the result of the policies of either political party.

Jesus said:

The poor you will always have with you, and you can help them any time you want.  Mark 14:7

The Apostle Paul said:

For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “If a man will not work, he shall not eat.” 2 Thessalonians 3:10

Please understand–I am not opposed to charity, but when the government took over the role of the church in the area of charity, things went downhill fast. The welfare system in America and Britain supports a bureaucracy that has no incentive to remove people from welfare roles–in fact their jobs depend on people staying on welfare. The Bible teaches personal responsibility–it does not teach taking out a loan (creating a personal obligation) and then expecting someone else to pay for it. It teaches:

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.  Galatians 6:9

That applies to spiritual things as well as practical things. Had Jesus encountered the OWS crowd, he would have told them to respect other people’s property, live up to their obligations, and work if they were able. Jesus loved all people. He preached personal responsibility and charity. I don’t think the OWS movement represents either one of those traits.

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I Guess Occupy Wall Street Really Isn’t Like The Tea Party Movement

I have been to a few tea party events. I went to a primary election debate hosted by the Tea Party once. The only disruptions were on the part of the paid protesters that were paid by the local unions. I have been to Tax Day Tea Party Events. I have never seen any violence or lawlessness there. At these events I have seen Tea Party members pick up after themselves and leave the area clean when they leave. That doesn’t seem to be the story of the Wall Street Occupiers.

CBS News posted a story yesterday about what is happening to the Occupy Wall Street protests in Oakland, California. Over the weekend, the Oakland police issued three eviction notices to the protesters, telling them that they do not have the right to camp out overnight in Frank Ogawa Plaza.

In Philadelphia, police arrested a man after a women was dragged into an Occupy Wall Street tent and sexually assaulted.

As you remember, many Democrats praised the Occupy Wall Street movement when it began and said that they were sympathetic to the movement. How are they going to distance themselves from those statements? Easy.

The article reports:

“Occupy Philly has changed,” Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter said today. “We’re seeing serious health and safety issues playing out on almost a daily basis. Occupy Philly is fractured, with internal disagreement and disputes. The people of Occupy Philly have also changed. And their intentions have changed. And all of this is not good for Philadelphia.” 

The only part of that statement that is true is the last sentence.

Andrew Breitbart’s Big Government website has kept a rap sheet on the Occupy Wall Street protesters since October 1. The list currently stands at 232 incidents. These are not the 99 percent. Many of them are part of the criminal element–not the working class.

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I Never Felt At Risk At A Tea Party Rally

I went to my first Tea Party event in Providence, Rhode Island, in 2009. Due to my husband’s work schedule and the fact that I am a total wimp about driving in Providence, I was only there for the last hour. I saw young families with children, grandparents and college students. There was no violence–there wasn’t even any litter that I saw. I never felt uncomfortable, and I really don’t look like I would be a very difficult target to attack. In 2010 I attended a Tea Party rally in Worcester because Worcester is part of my voting district. Same story.

Fast forward to 2011 and the Occupy Wall Street movement. I understand that New York City generally has more crime than either Providence or Worcester, but there is still some semblance of order in New York City (or so I thought). Hot Air reported yesterday that the Occupy Wall Street group at Zuccotti Park has set up a ‘safe’ tent for women to protect them from the rapes that have occurred at night in the Occupy Wall Street settlement. I suppose I should be grateful that the group cared enough to set up a ‘women only’ tent to protect women from rape, but it bothers me that these ‘concerned citizens’ would have a problem with rapists within their group.

Hot Air reports on the double standard in reporting the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street:

This can’t be repeated enough: With a few exceptions, foremost among them the New York Post, the coverage of OWS protests compared to the coverage of tea-party protests is the worst media double standard in recent history. Nothing compares, because nothing else involves this much distortion on both ends of the coverage. It’s not just that most press outlets (like the protesters themselves) look the other way at depravity happening inside Obamaville, it’s that for years they treated the tea-party movement as some sort of feral mob that was forever on the brink of rampaging through the streets — like, say, Occupy Oakland just did. If you missed it when I posted it last week, go watch the ad the DNC ran in August 2009 when tea partiers first started showing up to town halls on ObamaCare. That set the tone. We began the year with tea-party pols being smeared as killers over a shooting they had nothing to do with and we end it with actual rapes being shrugged off by the press because they’re bad PR for a movement they support. Disgrace.

That pretty much sums it up.

These are two of my pictures from the Providence Tea Party. This group is about as wholesome as groups can be!


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Have You Wondered What Happened To ACORN ?


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Fox News reported on Thursday that New York Communities for Change (NYCC), the new incarnation of Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) in New York, is desperately attempting to cover its connections to Occupy Wall Street.

The article reports:

Officials with the revamped ACORN office in New York — operating as New York Communities for Change — have fired staff, shredded reams of documents and told workers to blame disgruntled ex-employees for leaking information in an effort to explain away a FoxNews.com report last week on the group’s involvement in Occupy Wall Street protests, according to sources.

NYCC also is installing surveillance cameras and recording devices at its Brooklyn offices, removing or packing away supplies bearing the name ACORN and handing out photos of Fox News staff with a stern warning not to talk to the media, the sources said.

Please follow the link above to read the entire article. There is an amazing section in the article which involves around a discussion of whether or not paying people to carry signs is paying them to protest. The article cites a quote from Jonathan Westin, NYCC’s organizing director, when staffers confronted him with the fact that the group was paying protesters:

‘No your job is to fight for economic and social justice. We just send you to protest.’
That kind of logic makes my head hurt.


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Occupy Wall Street Branches Out


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Israel National News is reporting today that a group of thugs attempted to barge into the Israeli Consulate in Boston to protest Israel’s seizure of the Canadian-Irish flotilla ships that attempted to sail to Gaza.  I would like to remind anyone who agrees with these thugs that the naval blockade of Gaza has been declared legal under international law.

According to the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs:

A maritime blockade is in effect off the coast of Gaza. Such blockade has been imposed, as Israel is currently in a state of armed conflict with the Hamas regime that controls Gaza, which has repeatedly bombed civilian targets in Israel with weapons that have been  smuggled into Gaza via the sea.

Considering the number of rocket attacks on Israel that have originated in Gaza, this makes perfect sense.

The Israel National News further reports:

The activists were “spillovers” from the Occupy Boston protests, one of many Occupy Wall Street protests, some with anti- Semitic undertones, being held in the U.S. demanding social justice. At least three people have been arrested on drug charges in the protests over the past several days, and police report numerous knife fights between homeless individuals who are participating in the protests. Police also report a significant rise in vandalism in downtown Boston.

If Occupy Wall Street does actually represent more than 5 percent of the American population, we are in serious trouble.

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The Wall Street Journal Understands Financial Things

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Today’s Wall Street Journal posted an editorial updating what is happening with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. It seems that we have not yet learned our lessons about these two organizations.

Florida Republican Bill Posey and New York Democrat Gary Ackerman are asking fellow members of the House of Representatives to sign a letter supporting an amendment to an appropriations bill recently passed in the Senate. The amendment will increase the mortgage limits that Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Federal Housing Administration can insure from $625,500 to $729,750.

The article concludes:

There’s talk now that the House and Senate will convene a conference later this week to negotiate the final details on the appropriations bill that includes the loan-limit hike, without the accountability of so much as a floor debate or a hearing. That would confirm that, for all its reform talk, the current House majority is little better than the one that disgraced Republican principles in 2005-2006.

Ed Morrissey at Hot Air posted an article yesterday reporting on Mayor Bloomberg’s addressing the Occupy Wall Street people and explaining how federal policies caused the housing bubble. Mr. Morrissey reports on Mayor Bloomberg’s statements:

By this time, everyone should be aware of the federal policies that precipitated the housing bubble and its collapse — the push by Congress and two administrations to push higher-risk lending in order to expand home ownership, as well as the effort by Congress to get Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to spread that risk through mortgage-backed securities.  While Wall Street made the situation worse by developing risky derivatives on those securities and failed to recognize the risk inherent in the securities themselves, the collapse wouldn’t have occurred at all had the federal government not intervened to distort lending for their own social-engineering goals.

It is becoming very obvious that establishment Republicans are not really very different from the Democrats that got us into this mess. There is only one solution–elect tea party candidates who will not be swayed by the Republican establishment. As long as the current Republican leadership is in control, there will be no change in Washington.

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An Interesting Perspective From A Respected Voice

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On Friday, Big Government posted a story stating that Lech Walesa will not be coming to New York to get involved with the Occupy Wall Street movement.

The article reports:

The Polish champion of freedom and liberty, founder of Solidarity, winner of the 1984 Nobel Peace Prize, and first President of modern Poland Lech Walesa had been rumored to possibly be traveling to New York to stand with Occupy Wall Street protesters.  Press accounts reporting this “breathless” news had given all of us pause.

The group at Big Government reached out to Mr. Walesa. This is what followed:

When Walesa’s comments hit the AP wire last week, my team immediately reached out to our Polish contacts.  We made the point that the political themes of Occupy Wall Street may have started out with some of the principles that we share, but OWS themes were rapidly being morphed into anti-freedom and anti-liberty messages.  At the core is the want for a big, powerful central government to dominate the lives of individual citizens.

Using biggovernment.com plus other news sources, rapidly we painted an accurate picture of the groups training, leading, and organizing the “movement.” The movement is organized by anarchists, Code Pink, the American Communist movement, jihadists, anti-Israel, socialist, and anti- free enterprise interests. OWS folks are politically to the left of President Barack Obama.

At the Lech Walesa Institute Foundation in Warsaw, they were thankful to receive this information.

Based on our discussion and intervention, President Walesa is not going to get involved with the OWS.  He is not comfortable with the “organizations” behind the movement.  It was not a difficult discussion.

All of us are in danger of being manipulated or used by the media. Sometimes that takes the form of reporting wrong information, sometimes it is in the form of simply leaving out information. As we approach the election of 2012, we need to learn to do our own fact-checking and our own research on the events that are shaping both the world and our country. Obviously, it is not up to me to tell you how to do that, but you need to begin to stumble your way around the internet (if you haven’t already) and look for the ‘back stories’ on the things that are happening now. In the internet age, we have all become our own bureau chiefs, and we need to do our homework to stay informed.

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An Interesting Series Of Events

Yesterday’s New York Post posted a story about the problem of robberies at Occupy Wall Street in New York City.  The article reports:

Occupy Wall Street protesters said yesterday that packs of brazen crooks within their ranks have been robbing their fellow demonstrators blind, making off with pricey cameras, phones and laptops — and even a hefty bundle of donated cash and food.

“Stealing is our biggest problem at the moment,” said Nan Terrie, 18, a kitchen and legal-team volunteer from Fort Lauderdale.

“I had my Mac stolen — that was like $5,500. Every night, something else is gone. Last night, our entire [kitchen] budget for the day was stolen, so the first thing I had to do was . . . get the message out to our supporters that we needed food!”

What is a supposedly unemployed protester doing with a $5,500 computer? If the protester is so oppressed and down and out, where did the money come from to buy the computer? Likewise for all of the other pricey electronics gear? These guys have more ‘stuff’ than the rich they are protesting!
The article further reports:

Meanwhile, the Rev. Jesse Jackson was at Zuccotti late last night as he and about 50 protesters formed a human chain in front of a medical tent after police officers came over to ask about the tent, cops and protesters said.

“Jesse dropped in like a ninja,” said Stephanie Perricone, 21. “He came out of nowhere and helped us all out.”

The officers were asking about the size of the tent when the crowd of demonstrators — including Jackson — stood en masse in front of it.

The cops said didn’t ask for it to be taken down and the issue was quickly resolved.

It makes you wonder what was going on in the medical tent!

The Numbers Versus What We Have Been Told

Today’s Wall Street Journal posted a piece by Douglas Schoen, who previously served as a pollster for President Clinton, detailing the ideas of the people at Occupy Wall Street.

The article reports:

The protesters have a distinct ideology and are bound by a deep commitment to radical left-wing policies. On Oct. 10 and 11, Arielle Alter Confino, a senior researcher at my polling firm, interviewed nearly 200 protesters in New York’s Zuccotti Park. Our findings probably represent the first systematic random sample of Occupy Wall Street opinion.

Our research shows clearly that the movement doesn’t represent unemployed America and is not ideologically diverse. Rather, it comprises an unrepresentative segment of the electorate that believes in radical redistribution of wealth, civil disobedience and, in some instances, violence. Half (52%) have participated in a political movement before, virtually all (98%) say they would support civil disobedience to achieve their goals, and nearly one-third (31%) would support violence to advance their agenda.

This is not representative of most Americans. The article also points out that contrary to what the media has told us, only 15 percent of the protesters are unemployed (the national unemployment rate is 9.1 percent). The protesters polled also represent some really bad news for President Obama. The article reports:

An overwhelming majority of demonstrators supported Barack Obama in 2008. Now 51% disapprove of the president while 44% approve, and only 48% say they will vote to re-elect him in 2012, while at least a quarter won’t vote.

Fewer than one in three (32%) call themselves Democrats, while roughly the same proportion (33%) say they aren’t represented by any political party. 

 The article concludes:

Put simply, Democrats need to say they are with voters in the middle who want cooperation, conciliation and lower taxes. And they should work particularly hard to contrast their rhetoric with the extremes advocated by the Occupy Wall Street crowd.

Douglas Schoen understands what is going on. It’s a shame that the Obama administration does not seem to be listening to his wisdom.


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An Amazing Comment From Parenting.com

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What follows is part of an article at Parenting.com:

We know the unemployment rate (over 9 percent) and the number of us living in poverty (more than 46 million. That’s roughly one in seven). But Occupy Wall Street is not helping those people. Occupy Wall Street is a temper tantrum in a private park. And it’s parents, moms and dads, i.e. us, who are to blame.

At some point on the parenting evolutionary chart, we went from restrained to indulgent. We went from being parents to being friends. Peewee baseball games stopped keeping score. Everyone got a trophy. If there was a problem, there was always a Boogieman: allergies, ADD, auditory processing, a bad teacher. We stopped saying “no,” and started saying “no because…” We negotiated. We gave them options (Cinnamon Life and Frosted Mini Wheats? Big Time Rush or iCarly?). We told them they could be American Idols and astronauts, all while knowing they were tone deaf and terrible at chemistry.

Those kids went to college, and got useless degrees (full disclosure: film major with a psychology minor). They graduated, and then failed at being American Idols and astronauts. Without a decent set of coping skills, they’ve turned rejection into anger. They’ve lived a life where there were always options, where they never lost, where they thought the moon overhead followed them. They’ve been kicked out of the nest, having never been told their wings don’t run on batteries.

And now somebody owes them $150,000 for their education. No one said your major in horticulture was a coupon good for one free career.

This is the crop from the seeds planted in the mid-1960’s. We need to get back to disciplining our children in a way that gives them both structure and hope. We need to teach our children a work ethic that includes planning for the future and doing the work necessary to achieve that future. The author of this article hit the nail on the head.

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Behind The Scenes At Occupy Wall Street

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Big Government has posted two articles on some of the people involved in the Occupy Wall Street protests. The first article is here. It summarizes some of the emails that reporters from Big Government have obtained. These emails show who the people and groups are that are behind Occupy Wall Street, what these groups are planning, and what their goals are.

One highlight of the article:

The true purpose of the Occupy movement appears to be further economic and governmental destabilization, at a time when the world is already facing major financial and political challenges. By embracing the Occupy movement, President Barack Obama, the Democrat Party, and their union allies may be supporting an effort to harm both the domestic and global economies; to create social unrest throughout the democratic world; and to embrace other radical causes, including the anti-Israel movement. Ironically, the emails suggest that the President and the Democrat Party may soon find their friends in the Occupy movement to be a political burden. The email below calls for the Occupy movement to begin “executing higher-risk actions, civil disobedience and arrests,” and suggests: “We must draw a line, disavow the Democrats explicitly, make our messaging a little uncomfortable.” 

The second article at Big Government explains what caused Big Government to investigate the people behind Occupy Wall Street.

The article reports some disturbing connections:

Then, at the end of August, we were alerted by a fellow researcher that information about USDoR (U.S. Day of Rage, to which Occupy Wall Street is connected) had been posted on Shamuk and Al-Jahad, two Al-Qaeda recruitment sites. We began to take the “Occupy” protest more seriously, and dedicated more time to research and monitoring.

Days later, Anonymous announced that it would be releasing its new DDOS (Distributed Denial of Service) tool. Because of the Al-Qaeda posting, we contacted the New York Field Office of the FBI so they could investigate the potential threat. From that point on, we decided we needed to include the Human Element of Intelligence (HUMINT), and to infiltrate the protestors to map their ties to Anonymous, and to the postings on Shamuk and Al-Jahad.

Admittedly, a protest movement cannot truly control who shows up to protest, but I do think recruiting on Al-Qaeda websites is a bit much.

The second article contains links to emails relating to specific plans of the protesters. So far, the attempts at violence and financial disruption have failed. Hopefully, that will be the case in the future.

I will admit to being a child of the sixties. I have protested. I was a peaceful protester. I never destroyed property or was rude to police or protesters on the opposite side of the issue. Protests are valid in a free society. Destruction of property and violence are not valid. As Occupy Wall Street continues, we need to take a very close look at who is behind the protest and exactly what they are doing and what they intend to do.

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The Wall Street Journal’s View Of The Wall Street Protesters

Today’s Wall Street Journal posted an article on the ongoing Wall Street protests. There were some interesting points:

In the matter of Occupy Wall Street, the allegedly anticapitalist movement that’s been camped out in lower Manhattan for the past few weeks and has inspired copycat protests from Boston to Los Angeles, we have some sympathy. Really? Well, yeah.

OK, not for the half-naked demonstrators, the ranting anti-Semites, Kanye West or anyone else who has helped make Occupy Wall Street a target for easy ridicule. But to the extent that the mainly young demonstrators have a valid complaint, it’s that they are trying to bust their way into an economy where there is one job for every five job-seekers, and where youth unemployment runs north of 18%. That is a cause for frustration, if not outrage.

That’s editorial speak for “I feel their pain.” I think everyone can identify with the struggles of young people trying to get jobs in a miserable economy, but the protesters need to rethink some of their protest targets. On Wednesday, they marched on J.P. Morgan Chase’s headquarters. J.P. Chase did not take excessive mortgage risk and did not need or receive TARP money. So why are they being protested?

Something else the protesters might consider when complaining that they cannot find jobs:

Now move from words to actions. Want a shovel-ready job? The Administration has spent three years sitting on the Keystone XL pipeline project that promises to create 13,000 union jobs and 118,000 “spin-off” jobs. A State Department environmental review says the project poses no threat to the environment, but the Administration’s eco-friends are screaming lest it go ahead. 

The article concludes:

This probably won’t do much to persuade the Occupiers of Wall Street that their cause would be better served in Washington, D.C., where a sister sit-in this week seems to have fizzled. Then again, most of America’s jobless also won’t recognize their values or interests in the warmed-over anticapitalism being served up in lower Manhattan. Three years into the current Administration, most Americans are getting wise to the source of their economic woes. It’s a couple hundred miles south of Wall Street. 

The easiest way to revive the stalled economy is the develop America’s fossil fuel energy sources. Unfortunately, under this administration, that will not happen.

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About The Anti-Capitalism Aspect Of The Wall Street Protests

HotAir posted a story today that featured this ad from Craig’s List:

I realize it’s hard to read the small print, but the bottom line here is that you can get paid to make a difference by joining the Wall Street protests. Isn’t that capitalism?

This is a portion from the body of the add:

You must be an energetic communicator, with a passion for social and economic justice.  Only outgoing, articulate dedicated, determined candidates will be considered for the positions.

For those candidates that qualify WFP offers substantial paid-training provided by senior leadership, on varied issues such as: advocacy, public speaking, mobilizing, fundraising, networking and organizing. We invest in passionate people with excellent communication skills and a full benefits package is offered to those candidates that qualify. In addition, there is opportunity for advancement and travel to our satellite chapters and out of state affiliates.

This is not a policy job! Through direct action you will be shaping NY state politics for the next 20 years.

The article at Hot Air points out that generally ‘direct action’ means protesting.  More from the ad:

Compensation: $350-$650 A Week Depending On Responsibility & Length Of Time On Staff.

 The $350 a week works out to $8.75 an hour for a forty-hour week. Are these protesters working forty-hour weeks

A Slightly Different Take On Occupy Wall Street

Yesterday The Corner at National Review OnLine posted an interesting commentary on the Wall Street protests. The article points out that although part of the crowd protesting is ‘old lefties and sundry off-their-meds street people,’ many of them are college graduates. The protesters have stated that they are mad because they cannot get jobs. The problem is not that they can’t get jobs–they can’t get the jobs they want where they want them.

The article points out:

Wages for entry-level and semi-skilled workers have barely budged in ten years. I credit this to employer’s wariness about hiring anyone at all. Hiring people (and all the litigation risks they present) is simply too risky unless that hire is obviously going to enhance the bottom line. Risks on the young and the untested are simply unacceptable in a tight economy tied down with regulation.

In short, if an Occupy Wall Street kid is ever inclined to look for work, the job he finds is not likely to be the groovy one he and his beleaguered parents envisioned when that $200,000 was shelled out for a four-year degree in poli-sci or women’s studies.

The point of this article is that the revolution we may be seeing may eventually target the educational system in America.

The article concludes:

We haven’t had a bad enough economy to test this proposition in a while — an economy that forces employers to hire only the most essential workers — but what we are seeing these days is that a four-year liberal-arts degree is completely non-essential. The only twentysomethings I know who are gainfully employed and living like men, with their own apartments, cars, and girlfriends, are in the building trades. My upstairs neighbor has more work than he can handle designing and installing sound systems in large places like auditoriums and shopping malls.

If there’s going to be a revolution in this country, I would like one part of it to look like this: Vocational schools would be opened again (and celebrated, not marginalized) and parents would tell junior that a four-year degree is off the table unless he knows exactly how he can use it.

I am not opposed to sending children to college, although I will admit that when I sent my children to college it was much less expensive. All three of my daughters are gainfully employed in the fields that they studied to the degree that they choose to be employed. One daughter is a practicing lawyer, one is an electrical engineer, and one has an art degree. The lawyer and engineer work full time. The artist teaches part-time (which is her choice. She lives in California which has eliminated public school art teachers). I can, however, understand that a degree in women’s studies might not put you on the top of the resume pile.

It is interesting to note that as government aid to students has increased, the cost of an education has also risen rapidly. There is a chart at a website called trends.collegeboards.org which shows the rise of the cost of college since 1976. The question that some of the protesters need to ask is, “Is the government college loan program providing cover for colleges to raise their tuition fees beyond what those fees would normally be?”


What About Protester Greed ?

Fox News reported yesterday that one of the organizers of the Occupy Wall Street demonstration in Washington, D. C., paid the protesters.

The article reports:

But he also says the demonstrators wanted to be there, and he was merely compensating them for their time. 

“If you think I’m going to ask impoverished Latinos out of work, and out of luck, to parade for four hours under a broiling sun … think again,” Jim McGrath, chairman of the D.C. Tenants Advocacy Coalition, told FoxNews.com. 

Wow. My first question is where does the D.C. Tenants Advocacy Coalition get its money? Mr. McGrath explained that he paid them out of his own pocket. Let’s see–there were approximately 10 protesters that the article reports that he paid (there may be others paid by someone else, but we don’t know).  The minimum wage in the District of Columbia is $8.25 an hour, so that is $82.50 an hour for ten people.  Assuming they protested for one eight-hour day (with appropriate breaks and lunch hour), that is $660. Were taxes taken out of their paychecks? Were the proper forms filled out to show that they were legally here and eligible to be employed? Were their social security numbers checked with e-verify? Did they fill out the appropriate paperwork to receive wages? Which federal laws is Mr. McGrath in violation of by not filling out and returning the proper paperwork for hiring people? Was Workman’s Compensation taken out of their checks in case an angry passerby hit them over the head with their protest sign? In addition, why does the chairman of the D. C. Tenants Advocacy Coalition have that kind of money to throw around? Is he being paid the way a corporate fat cat is being paid? Are any of the major news outlets looking into that?

Some Random Thoughts On ‘Occupy Wall Street’

There are some interesting facts behind the ‘Occupy Wall Street’ protest. Bill Ayers (a man not known for his love of America or his patriotism) has a blog on Word Press (I’m sorry to hear that, but I believe in free speech). Bill is an aging 60’s radical who admits to being responsible for killing people. There is a long statement on his blog explaining what the protest is about.

The first line of that statement:

They have taken our houses through an illegal foreclosure process, despite not having the original mortgage.

Think about this for a minute. When a homeowner takes out a mortgage, he signs a contract that requires him to pay back that mortgage. It is understood that if he cannot pay the mortgage, he will lose the house. The subprime mortgage market was the result of government pressure to issue mortgages to people who could not pay them back. The banks then had to find a way to share the risk of these mortgages. The problem was partially the banks, but the root of the problem was the government. Why are the protesters protesting the banks and not the government?

While we are on the subject. The handbook used by Bill Ayers and Barack Obama during their organizing days in Chicago was Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals. As you watch the demonstrations on Wall Street, you need to keep the principles of this book in mind.

11.  Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, polarize it.  Don’t try to attack abstract corporations or bureaucracies.  Identify a responsible individual.  Ignore attempts to shift or spread the blame.

They have not yet picked a person to demonize, they are simply demonizing banks and big corporations. Another thing to remember is that union leaders are supporting this protest. What is the difference between the union leaders who get rich off the dues of their members and the so-called corporate ‘fat cats’ who are actually responsible for producing a product?

Listening to the comments of the protesters, I am convinced that what they want is to get everyone else’s money without actually having to work for it. Many of the protesters are spoiled children who do not want to pay back their school loans or accept the responsibilities of adulthood. I suspect they will be gone as soon as the weather gets cold–they are not thinking for themselves–they simply are buying a story someone is selling them. Until they find their own purpose, they will lack the direction to accomplish anything meaningful.

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