Obama: The Affirmative Action President

August 31, 2011

Years from now, historians may regard the 2008 election of Barack Obama as an inscrutable and disturbing phenomenon, a baffling breed of mass hysteria akin perhaps to the witch craze of the Middle Ages.

How, they will wonder, did a man so devoid of professional accomplishment beguile so many into thinking he could manage the world’s largest economy, direct the world’s most powerful military, execute the world’s most consequential job?

Imagine a future historian examining Obama’s pre-presidential life: ushered into and through the Ivy League despite unremarkable grades and test scores along the way; a cushy non-job as a “community organizer”; a brief career as a state legislator devoid of legislative achievement (and in fact nearly devoid of his attention, so often did he vote “present”); and finally an unaccomplished single term in United States Senate, the entirety of which was devoted to his presidential ambitions. He left no academic legacy in academia, authored no signature legislation as legislator.

And then there is the matter of his troubling associations: the white-hating, America-loathing preacher who for decades served as Obama’s “spiritual mentor”; a real-life, actual terrorist who served as Obama’s colleague and political sponsor.

It is easy to imagine a future historian looking at it all and asking: how on Earth was such a man elected president?

Not content to wait for history, the incomparable Norman Podhoretz addressed the question recently in the Wall Street Journal:

“To be sure, no white candidate who had close associations with an outspoken hater of America like Jeremiah Wright and an unrepentant terrorist like Bill Ayers would have lasted a single day. But because Mr. Obama was black, and therefore entitled in the eyes of liberaldom to have hung out with protesters against various American injustices, even if they were a bit extreme, he was given a pass.”

Let that sink in: Obama was given a pass — held to a lower standard — because of the color of his skin. Podhoretz continues:

“And in any case, what did such ancient history matter when he was also articulate and elegant and (as he himself had said) “non-threatening,” all of which gave him a fighting chance to become the first black president and thereby to lay the curse of racism to rest?”

Podhoretz puts his finger, I think, on the animating pulse of the Obama phenomenon — affirmative action. Not in the legal sense, of course. But certainly in the motivating sentiment behind all affirmative action laws and regulations, which are designed primarily to make white people, and especially white liberals, feel good about themselves.

Unfortunately, minorities often suffer so that whites can pat themselves on the back. Liberals routinely admit minorities to schools for which they are not qualified, yet take no responsibility for the inevitable poor performance and high drop-out rates which follow.

Liberals don’t care if these minority students fail; liberals aren’t around to witness the emotional devastation and deflated self esteem resulting from the racist policy that is affirmative action.

Yes, racist. Holding someone to a separate standard merely because of the color of his skin — that’s affirmative action in a nutshell, and if that isn’t racism, then nothing is. And that is what America did to Obama.

True, Obama himself was never troubled by his lack of achievements, but why would he be?

As many have noted, Obama was told he was good enough for Columbia despite undistinguished grades at Occidental; he was told he was good enough for the US Senate despite a mediocre record in Illinois; he was told he was good enough to be president despite no record at all in the Senate.

All his life, every step of the way, Obama was told he was good enough for the next step, in spite of ample evidence to the contrary. What could this breed if not the sort of empty narcissism on display every time Obama speaks?

In 2008, many who agreed that he lacked executive qualifications nonetheless raved about Obama’s oratory skills, intellect, and cool character.

Those people — conservatives included — ought now to be deeply embarrassed. The man thinks and speaks in the hoariest of clichés, and that’s when he has his teleprompter in front of him; when the prompter is absent he can barely think or speak at all. Not one original idea has ever issued from his mouth — it’s all warmed-over Marxism of the kind that has failed over and over again for 100 years.

And what about his character?

Obama is constantly blaming anything and everything else for his troubles. Bush did it; it was bad luck; I inherited this mess. It is embarrassing to see a president so willing to advertise his own powerlessness, so comfortable with his own incompetence.

But really, what were we to expect? The man has never been responsible for anything, so how do we expect him to act responsibly?

In short: our president is a small and small-minded man, with neither the temperament nor the intellect to handle his job. When you understand that, and only when you understand that, will the current erosion of liberty and prosperity make sense.

It could not have gone otherwise with such a man in the Oval Office.

But hey, at least we got to feel good about ourselves for a little while. And really, isn’t that all that matters these days?

By Matt Patterson, from:  http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/08/obama_the_affirmative_action_president.html

 

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Michelle Obama Vacations: $10 Million in Taxpayer Money on Expensive Massages, Top Shelf Vodka and Five-Star Hotels

August 24, 2011

The Obamas’ summer break on Martha’s Vineyard has already been branded a PR disaster after the couple arrived four hours apart on separate government jets.

But according to new reports, this is the least of their extravagances.

White House sources today claimed that the First Lady has spent $10million of U.S. taxpayers’ money on vacations alone in the past year.

Branding her ‘disgusting’ and ‘a vacation junkie’, they say the 47-year-old mother-of-two has been indulging in five-star hotels, where she splashes out on expensive massages and alcohol.

The ‘top source’ told the National Enquirer: ‘It’s disgusting. Michelle is taking advantage of her privileged position while the most hardworking Americans can barely afford a week or two off work.

‘When it’s all added up, she’s spent more than $10million in taxpayers’ money on her vacations.’

The First Lady is believed to have taken 42 days of holiday in the past year, including a $375,000 break in Spain and a four-day ski trip to Vail, Colorado, where she spent $2,000 a night on a suite at the Sebastian hotel.

And the first family’s nine-day stay in Martha’s Vineyard is also proving costly, with rental of the Blue Heron Farm property alone costing an estimated $50,000 a week.

The source continued: ‘Michelle also enjoys drinking expensive booze during her trips. She favours martinis with top-shelf vodka and has a taste for rich sparking wines.

‘The vacations are totally Michelle’s idea. She’s like a junkie. She can’t schedule enough getaways, and she lives from one to the next – all the while sticking it to hardworking Americans.’

While the President and his wife do pay for some of their personal expenses from their own pocket, the website whitehousedossier.com says that the amount paid by the couple is ‘dwarfed by the overall cost to the public’.

The magazine also reported that Mrs Obama, whose fashion choices are widely followed, had been going on ‘wild shopping sprees’, much to the distress of her husband, who, its sources reveal, is ‘absolutely furious’ at his wife’s ‘out-of-control spending’.

The President has already come under fire this week over his decision to take a family vacation while millions of Americans are out of work and countless more are financially strapped.

But the situation sparked further anger after he and his wife elected to fly separately to the Massachusetts retreat – despite travelling on the same day.

From:  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2029615/Michelle-Obama-accused-spending-10m-public-money-vacations.html


Obama Poll Numbers Lowest Ever (America is Waking Up!)

August 24, 2011

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Tuesday shows that 19% of the nation’s voters Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as president.

Forty-five percent (45%) Strongly Disapprove, giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -26 (see trends).

This is the lowest Approval Index rating yet measured for President Obama. The previous low was -24 reached yesterday and also in September 2010. Additionally, the level of Strong Approval matches the lowest yet recorded. By way of comparison, President Bush had ratings near the end of his second term in the minus 30s.

As tension continues in Libya, just 12% think the United States should get more involved in Syria.

Only 20% think government anti-poverty programs reduce poverty.

Seventy-one percent (71%) believe too many people get welfare who should not be getting it.

Only 18% believe the opposite is true.

Fifty-nine percent (59%) think immigrants who follow the law and enter the United States legally should have to wait three years or more before collecting welfare benefits

From:  http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/obama_administration/daily_presidential_tracking_poll

 


Obama “5 Million Green Jobs” Promise an Abysmal Bust (What Else is New?)

August 23, 2011

While campaigning President Obama promised to create 5 million “green” jobs, and shortly into his term he announced a “task force” to do just that.

His stimulus package included tax credits for renewable energy companies, allotted funds for weatherization and more.

Now with the economy once again on shaky ground the President may pivot back to jobs in September, specifically of the “green” variety.

 More than two years later after those initiatives began, the results are dismal. In fact a number of the very companies the Obama administration touted as future job creators have gone bankrupt or had to lay off employees instead. But you won’t hear about this from ABC, CBS and NBC very often

Networks Praise ‘Green Jobs’ Ignore Inefficiency

It came as no surprise that something as feel good as green jobs would earn praise from the networks. “We have gotten the message. Green-collar jobs are the wave of the future,” Diane Sawyer declared on April 15, 2009.

Two years later we have seen that future and it is bleak. The national unemployment rate still stands at 9.1 percent. Millions of taxpayer dollars have been wasted and jobs have actually been lost. On Aug. 15, 2011, The Seattle Post-Intelligencer reported that their city’s green jobs program was a “bust.”

Seattle had won a $20 million federal grant in 2010 to weatherize homes. The goals of the program were to create 2,000 jobs and retrofit 2,000 homes, according to the Seattle P-I.

“But more than a year later, Seattle’s numbers are lackluster. As of last week, only three homes had been retrofitted and just 14 new jobs have emerged from the program,” Seattle P-I wrote. “Many of the jobs are administrative, and not the entry-level pathways once dreamed for low-income workers. Some people wonder if the original goals are now achievable.”

Seattle isn’t alone. The Heritage Foundation noted in a blog post as Obama toured a battery plant in Holland, Mich. that another Michigan business touted by the administration for its “green jobs” no longer exists.

Fisher Coachworks is out of business “just two years after it drew acclaim for being part of Michigan’s green future, despite millions in state taxpayer funding and a contract to sell buses to be purchased with federal taxpayers dollars,” Heritage’s Mike Brownfield wrote.

An editorial from Investor’s Business Daily cited those examples and more:

 •Green Vehicles – Salinas, Calif. Went out of business after spending more than $500,000 in city taxpayer dollars.

 •Evergreen Solar Inc. Filed for bankruptcy Aug. 15, 2011, although the Obama administration touted it as “hoping to hire 90 to 100 people.” They had already shuttered a factory in March and cut 800 jobs. They also plan to shut down a plant in Michigan.

Even the battery plant Obama toured on Aug. 11 should have been reported as an example of the inefficiency of taxpayer-subsidized “green jobs.” That Johnson Controls plant produced 150 jobs, with $300 million according to IBD. That breaks down to $2 million per job.

 While the networks have essentially ignored the disastrous results of Obama’s green jobs policies, print media (local and national) have admitted the failures. Even the Aug. 19, 2011, New York Times published an article by The Bay Citizen (a San Francisco news outlet) that reported:“Federal and state efforts to stimulate creation of green jobs have largely failed, government records show.”

That Bay Citizen story cited the flawed weatherization program and pointed out that “Job training programs intended for the clean economy have also failed to generate big numbers.” In California, $59 million spent on training “led to only 719 placements — the equivalent of an $82,000 subsidy for each one.”

Green Job Subsidies Don’t Work, Just Look at Spain

Fundamentally, there were economic problems with Obama’s green jobs policies because the government picked winners and losers and tried to artificially create demand. When the subsidies stopped coming (and sometimes earlier) a number of businesses collapsed. Other programs took much longer than expected to implement, and have not come close to meeting their targets.

The Obama administration and the media should have seen this coming. News networks (and all journalists) in particular had a responsibility to investigate the administration’s grand green jobs promises, question them and challenge them. But they usually didn’t despite evidence that green jobs programs are inefficient and cost jobs.

In March 2009, Bloomberg reported the findings of a Spanish study about green jobs. The King Juan Carlos University study found that the green jobs push in Spain actually resulted in job destruction: costing at least 2.2 jobs per government-supported “green” job.

The next month, Reuters.com ran an article about the study asking, “Do green jobs cannibalize other jobs?” Reuters quoted the author of the study, Gabriel Calzada, who wrote: “Spain’s experience cited by President Obama as a model reveals with high confidence by two different methods, that the U.S. should expect a loss of at least 2.2 jobs on average, or about 9 jobs lost for every 4 created.”

From:  http://newsbusters.org/blogs/julia-seymour/2011/08/22/networks-hardly-criticize-obama-green-jobs-flop

 


Obama Has Created a Food Stamp Nation; Now, Even People With Jobs Qualify for Food Stamps

August 22, 2011

(Reuters) – Genna Saucedo supervises cashiers at a Wal-Mart in Pico Rivera, California, but her wages aren’t enough to feed herself and her 12-year-old son.

Saucedo, who earns $9.70 an hour for about 26 hours a week and lives with her mother, is one of the many Americans who survive because of government handouts in what has rapidly become a food stamp nation.

Altogether, there are now almost 46 million people in the United States on food stamps, roughly 15 percent of the population. That’s an increase of 74 percent since 2007, just before the financial crisis and a deep recession led to mass job losses.

At the same time, the cost doubled to reach $68 billion in 2010 — more than a third of the amount the U.S. government received in corporate income tax last year — which means the program has started to attract the attention of some Republican lawmakers looking for ways to cut the nation’s budget deficit.

While there are clearly some cases of abuse by people who claim food stamps but don’t really need them, for many Americans like Saucedo there is little current alternative if they are to put food on the table while paying rent and utility bills.

It’s kind of sad that even though I’m working that I need to have government assistance. I have asked them to please put me on full-time so I can have benefits,” said the 32-year-old.

She’s worked at Wal-Mart for nine months, and applied for food stamps as soon as her probation ended. She said plenty of her colleagues are in the same situation.

So are her customers. Bill Simon, head of Wal-Mart’s U.S. operations, told a conference call last Tuesday that the company had seen an increase in the number of shoppers relying on government assistance for food.

About forty percent of food stamp recipients are, like Saucedo, in households in which at least one member of the family earns wages. Many more could be eligible: the government estimates one in three who could be on the program are not.

“If they’re working, they often think they can’t get help. But people can’t support their families on $10, $11, $12 an hour jobs, especially when you add transport, clothes, rent.” said Carolyn McLaughlin, executive director of BronxWorks, a social services organization in New York.

“SNAP is increasingly work support,” said Ed Bolen, an analyst at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

And that’s only likely to get worse: So far in the recovery, jobs growth has been concentrated in lower-wage occupations, with minimal growth in middle-income wages as many higher-paid blue collar jobs have disappeared.

And 6 percent of the 72.9 million Americans paid by the hour received wages at or below the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour in 2010. That’s up from 4.9 percent in 2009, and 3 percent in 2002, according to government data.

Bolen said just based on income, minimum wage single parents are almost always eligible for food stamps.

“This becomes an implicit subsidy for low-wage jobs and in terms of incentives for higher wage job creation that really is not a good thing,” said Arindrajit Dube, an economics professor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

From:  http://news.yahoo.com/usa-becomes-food-stamp-nation-sustainable-160645036.html

 

 


Jobless Claims Jump As Obama Vacations in Martha’s Vineyard

August 19, 2011

More Americans than forecast filed applications for unemployment benefits last week, signaling the labor market is struggling two years into the economic recovery.

Jobless claims climbed by 9,000 to 408,000 in the week ended Aug. 13, the highest in a month, Labor Department figures showed today in Washington. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg News projected a rise in claims to 400,000, according to the median forecast. The number of people on unemployment benefit rolls rose, while those receiving extended payments fell.

Companies like Bank of New York Mellon Corp. (BK) are paring staff, one reason consumers are limiting their spending, which accounts for about 70 percent of the economy. Unemployment at 9.1 percent helps explain why Federal Reserve policy makers last week pledged to hold interest rates at a record low until at least mid-2013 to spur growth.

“People continue to get laid off,” David Semmens, a U.S. economist at Standard Chartered Bank in New York, said before the report. “The uncertainty in the economic outlook is continuing to give hiring managers sleepless nights and is keeping businesses from expanding. We have an incredibly long way to go” to get a healthy labor market, Semmens said.

From:  http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-08-18/first-time-unemployment-claims-in-u-s-rise-more-than-estimated-to-408-000.html


Obama Stops Deportation of Illegal Aliens…

August 19, 2011

Obama says he’ll still deport “criminals.” 

Message to Obama:  If they’re here illegally, they ARE criminals. 

Geesh.  This guy is unfreakingbelievable!

— Spencer

———————————

Bowing to pressure from immigrant rights activists, the Obama administration said Thursday that it will halt deportation proceedings on a case-by-case basis against illegal immigrants who meet certain criteria, such as attending school, having family in the military or having primary responsible for other family members’ care.

The move marks a major step for President Obama, who for months has said he does not have broad categorical authority to halt deportations and said he must follow the laws as Congress has written them.

But in letters to Congress on Thursday, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said she does have discretion to focus on “priorities” and that her department and the Justice Department will review all ongoing cases to see who meets the new criteria.

This case-by-case approach will enhance public safety,” she said. “Immigration judges will be able to more swiftly adjudicate high-priority cases, such as those involving convicted felons.”

The move won immediate praise from Hispanic activists and Democrats who had strenuously argued with the administration that it did have authority to take these actions, and said as long as Congress is deadlocked on the issue, it was up to Mr. Obama to act.

“Today’s announcement shows that this president is willing to put muscle behind his words and to use his power to intervene when the lives of good people are being ruined by bad laws,” said Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez, Illinois Democrat, who has taken a leadership role on the issue since the death of Sen. Edward M. Kennedy in 2009.

The new rules apply to those who have been apprehended and are in deportation proceedings, but have not been officially ordered out of the country by a judge.

From:  http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/aug/18/new-dhs-rules-cancel-deportations/