Conservative Political Commentary

[Under the Radar?] Anti-socialist, anti-communist, anti-globalist, pro-Constitution, and usually with an attempt at historical and economic context (This blog was given its name before I decided it was going to be a political blog.)

Monday, July 29, 2013

Our Phony, Fake, Politically Posturing, Dishonest President

President Barack Obama, in constant campaign mode because he has no clue how to govern (i.e., lead), is out on the trail blaming Republicans for our troubles and accusing them of being focused on “phony scandals.”

Barack Obama, who has done nothing positive that I am aware of to benefit America, never tires of blaming others and, being unwilling to own up to any of his failures, just dismisses these very real scandals as “phony.” In a sane political environment, any of five (at least) serious scandals would bring about either (1) abject apologies and serious personnel discipline and possible criminal trials, or (2) the impeachment or resignation of the president.

The “phony scandals” line is part of the administration’s policy of stonewalling on these serious scandals and hoping they’ll go away as time goes on. There will be no special prosecutors, because appointing them would imply that there may be something to prosecute – which of course there is.

Washington, says the president, has “taken its eyes off the ball.” Otherwise, of course, they’d be passing more tax increases, approving greater and greater spending, and creating more idiotic “green energy” programs, doing more bankrolling of crony “green” companies that will never succeed, some of which we’ll get anyway.

The Obama Administration’s corruption is a real scandal, and sometimes breaks out in such blatant offenses as the IRS’ illegal targeting of Obama’s political opponents, plus Fast and Furious, a gun-running operation gone wrong (that was supposed to bring about demand for more gun control, but actually facilitated the deaths of an American Border Patrol agent and many Mexicans). Then there’s the Benghazi terrorist attack, in which four Americans died, including the U.S. ambassador to Libya. The president and secretary of state abandoned the Americans to die and lied to their survivors and the American people. Add to these the brazen targeting of James Rosen and the Associated Press reporters by the Justice Department, plus the NSA revelations about accumulating everyone’s phone records, reading who knows how many emails and listening to who knows how many phone calls of Americans and our allies, not to mention the creation of a massive database of everyone’s information. Any of these should be enough to bring this administration down.

But simply label them “phony” and “fake” and hope they’ll disappear – that’s the strategy, and the awful problem is, it may work a great deal better than it should. Until this pathetic administration (and the Democrats) are out of power, we will endure more and more scandal and less and less correction by those responsible. The GOP must become real opposition, and citizens need to pay more attention.

Friday, July 19, 2013

America in Distress: Leftists Are Doing All They Can to Unravel Our Country

Few individual things the left wing is doing these days really surprise me, but the speed and thoroughness at which they are accomplishing the destruction of America as we have known it is startling.

The Obama Administration is stonewalling and in denial on five or six major scandals, Obamacare looms as a destroyer of freedom, jobs, and health care coverage, the Senate just voted for an immigration bill that contains no assurance of secure borders ever, and codifies a come-one-come-all approach which endangers our economy as well as national security. The immigration bill, passed unread (unwritten?), in an unnecessary rush with very little deliberation, awaits House action. Fortunately, the House of Representatives may not be as gullible as the Senate, and House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) has given assurance that the Senate bill will not be taken up by the House.

The immigration issue should be approached slowly and deliberately, and start with assured border control. Otherwise, it’s better to do nothing.

IRS Scandal Gets Worse

As days go by, more revelations come to light about how high up the hierarchy this criminal business goes. Now it’s up to the level of the IRS chief counsel, an Obama appointee, and the White House chief of staff and the White House chief counsel had information about it but claim Obama did not.

There is as much chance of reforming the IRS as there is of persuading Hamas to be nice guys and not bother Israel. Not gonna happen. Replace the IRS with a different smaller agency with limited power (such as not seizing money or property without a court order, not leaking confidential tax records, not running Obamacare, etc.). Throw out the entire tax code and replace it with a greatly simplified flat tax. Replace the politically-appointed leadership and fire all personnel who were involved in directing the abusive actions.

The Administration adds insult to injury by (1) recruiting thousands more IRS agents to enforce Obamacare, and (2) handing out $70 million in bonuses to IRS personnel.

The current situation is probably the best opportunity short of total societal collapse that we will ever see to get rid of the IRS. I wish Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) success in his efforts and I hope many will join in. As Rahm Emanuel said, we shouldn’t let a good crisis go to waste.

Dumb Diplomacy
As though demagoguery on “climate change” in the U.S. and U.N. weren’t enough, President Obama spoke at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin about how this is the great issue of our time, implying it can only be dealt with by endless taxes and cockamamie schemes that will never work, shutting down energy production and imposing even more severe government control on everything. What a stupid, sick joke. The whole thing is idiotic, and I am ’way past the point of even pretending to want to be civil about this evil hoax any more.
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And, more recently, Obama feels he must fight for homosexual rights in Africa and everywhere else. As a famous preacher has pointed out, this administration has made the sins of Romans 1 their political platform, and by gosh, they’re going to be sure to impose them on everyone, like it or not. This reminds me of The Onion’s satirical piece a few years ago called “Massachusetts Supreme Court Orders All Citizens to Gay Marry.”

Gay Marriage Ruling: Justices Antonin Scalia and Samuel Alito Correctly Describe the Current Judicial Weirdness Regarding the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) Ruling

If you want to read something really interesting and meaningful, read Justice Scalia’s blistering dissent to the gay marriage ruling.

Mr. Scalia objects to the Court ruling where there is no controversy before them. He notes that the President enforced DOMA in this case only to give the “plaintiff” standing. In fact, all parties were in agreement as to the issue itself as well as with the lower court ruling.

…We have never before agreed to speak – to “say what the law is” – where there is no controversy before us. In the more than two centuries that this Court has existed as an institution, we have never suggested that we have the power to decide a question when every party agrees with both its nominal opponent and the court below on that question's answer. The United States reluctantly conceded that at oral argument [citation]….

…The majority concludes that the only motive for this Act was the “bare . . . desire to harm a politically unpopular group.” [citation]. Bear in mind that the object of this condemnation is not the legislature of some once-Confederate Southern state (familiar objects of the Court’s scorn, [citation]), but our respected coordinate branches, the Congress and Presidency of the United States. Laying such a charge against them should require the most extraordinary evidence, and I would have thought that every attempt would be made to indulge a more anodyne explanation for the statute. The majority does the opposite – affirmatively concealing from the reader the arguments that exist in justification. It makes only a passing mention of the “arguments put forward” by the Act's defenders, and does not even trouble to paraphrase or describe them [citation]. I imagine that this is because it is harder to maintain the illusion of the Act’s supporters as unhinged members of a wild-eyed lynch mob when one first describes their views as they see them….

Justice Alito, in a separate dissenting opinion, writes, in part

…United States clearly is not a proper petitioner in this case. The United States does not ask us to overturn the judgment of the court below or to alter that judgment in any way. Quite to the contrary, the United States argues emphatically in favor of the correctness of that judgment. We have never before reviewed a decision at the sole behest of a party that took such a position, and to do so would be to render an advisory opinion, in violation of Article III’s dictates. For the reasons given in Justice Scalia’s dissent, I do not find the Court's arguments to the contrary to be persuasive….

…In asking the Court to determine that §3 of DOMA is subject to and violates heightened scrutiny, Windsor and the United States thus ask us to rule that the presence of two members of the opposite sex is as rationally related to marriage as white skin is to voting or a Y-chromosome is to the ability to administer an estate. That is a striking request and one that unelected judges should pause before granting. Acceptance of the argument would cast all those who cling to traditional beliefs about the nature of marriage in the role of bigots or superstitious fools….

In the DOMA case, Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Clarence Thomas also dissented, joining, in part, the dissents of Scalia and/or Alito.

Since the days of Chief Justice Earl Warren, the federal courts have routinely imposed liberal views by legislating from the bench and seemingly basing decisions more on political preferences than law. The current Court has made some reasonable decisions, but they do not include this case, nor the legal stretches of Chief Justice Roberts in the Obamacare case, which many have written about previously.
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Alas, George Zimmerman may soon be facing unconstitutional double jeopardy. The shooting of Trayvon Martin was tragic, but the jury got the verdict right, based on the evidence presented. Attorney General Eric Holder wants to placate the radical left and the race-hustler industry by investigating Zimmerman further, although the previous investigations failed to show any racial hatred on Zimmernan’s part. But getting liberals to stir up noise and trouble over Trayvon Martin does distract from some of the embarrassing messes the administration is currently in. Here we have more of the politics of personal destruction in action.
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We are living with a U.S. government out of control. The IRS scandal, the Benghazi scandal, Fast and Furious, the Sebelius fund-raising incident, and others, testify to the corruption rampant in the administration. Further, the left is growing the government to unheard-of size (with astronomical levels of debt) and seeking to involve government in every adult decision of our citizens’ lives. Individual freedom shrinks as government grows. Every movement to the left reduces liberty. But, hey, some people are getting free stuff, and apparently won’t have to prove any need in order to get health insurance subsidies. And there’s plenty of corporate welfare – for now. The corruption of government starts with, and further corrupts, the citizenry. Of course, the mainstream media has largely abandoned journalism and reeks of unabashed leftist devotion.

The lack of greater pushback by citizens and legislators against the dictatorial direction of the federal government is discouraging and disturbing. God bless the Tea Party and those too-few courageous legislators and others who are willing to speak up and take action.