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An Honest Liberal: “My view [is] that the president, has in fact, exceeded his authority in a way that is creating a destabilizing influence in a three branch system. I want to emphasize, of course, this problem didn’t begin with President Obama, I was critical of his predecessor President Bush as well, but the rate at which executive power has been concentrated in our system is accelerating. And frankly, I am very alarmed by the implications of that aggregation of power...What also alarms me, however, is that the two other branches appear not just simply passive, but inert in the face of this concentration of authority. The fact that I happen to think the president is right on many of these policies does not alter the fact that I believe the means he is doing [it] is wrong, and that this can be a dangerous change in our system, and our system is changing in a very fundamental way. And it’s changing without a whimper of regret or opposition.” - Constitutional Law Professor Jonathan Turley, testifying before Congress that President Obama is bringing us to "a constitutional tipping point".
Millions Of Americans Are Lying About Higher Health Care Costs For The Koch Brothers, Or Something: "There are plenty of [Obamacare] horror stories being told. All of them are untrue...These two [Koch] brothers are trying to buy America" - Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), who claimed the Republicans and Koch Brothers are lying about the Obamacare hardships people are experiencing.
When progressives disagree with what I write, which is often (because I frequently criticize progressive policies, especially in the areas of business and economics, and I'm no fan of Barack Obama), they generally react with a tirade against Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, and the Koch Brothers, as if that unholy trio (in progressive eyes) is somehow directing my words. It's bizarre how often this happens. It's kind of a progressive firewall against actually having to confront unpleasant information they'd rather not think about.
As funny as I find this progressive knee-jerk reaction, especially when I provide links TELLING progressives where my information is coming from (generally not Fox News, and I can't recall ever using Rush or the Kochs as a source), today I'm going to tell progressives what sparked this post, being as concerned for their mental well-being as I am.
The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) is a federal law specifying the budget and expenditures of the United States Department of Defense (DOD). Each year's act also includes other provisions, some related to civil liberties.
This is a story I was going to pass on initially, but the more I learned about it, the more troubling it became.
As has been in the news, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), a government agency, was going to undertake something they called a "Multi-Market Study Of Critical Information Needs", in which they were going to send FCC researchers into newsrooms across the country to determine if news organizations were meeting the "critical needs" of the public. The FCC said the study was:
President Obama has proposed raising the federal minimum wage from $7.25 per hour to $10.10 per hour by 2016. The Democrats are aligned with their President, and a wide majority of the American public also wants to raise the minimum wage. Republicans are against it. House Republicans unanimously voted down an amendment to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 last year.
Enter the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), which estimated the following effects from a minimum wage hike to $10.10. This is from the L.A. Times:
The GOP has been in a tizzy lately over President Obama's use of executive orders to end run existing legislation. A bunch of House Republicans have co-sponsored the Stop This Overreaching Presidency (STOP) resolution to take legal action against the President. Here's what the GOP is complaining about with STOP. From The Hill:
"...the STOP resolution is aimed at reversing Obama's delay of the [Obamacare] employer mandate, enactment of the Dream Act, extension of "substandard" health insurance plans and ending work requirements for welfare".
My left-wing blogger pal, The Reverend, went on one of his anti-capitalism rants the other day in a post titled, "The Failure Of U.S. Capitalism". Upon reading that familiar left-wing tirade against capitalism, my first thought was...if capitalism is a "failure", then what in the world has succeeded ? Nothing that I can see.
Let's look at some facts to test the Reverend's odd hypothesis.
Harry Dent, a Harvard Business School graduate who has also been referred to as a futurist, created the Spending Wave theory of economics in a 1993 book titled The Great Boom Ahead. Dent associated economic growth with demographics. He postulated that the massive baby boom population would spur economic growth as it reached it's peak spending age years (mid-40's to 54). The baby boom generation refers to those children born in the post-WWII years of 1946 to 1964. If you look at the birth rate chart at the previous link, you will see that the birth rate has dropped dramatically since the baby boom period ended, and is now lower than at any time in the 20th century.
When the boomers became adults (I'm using 18 as the age of adulthood), that means the boomer effect on consumer spending began in about 1964 and hit full stride in 1982. This boomer spending wave would be expected to continue until the boomers were past their peak spending years, all other economic factors being equal.
In a recent interview with Bill O'Reilly of Fox News, President Obama, among many other incredible statements, asserted that there was "not even a smidgen or corruption" in the IRS targeting scandal. The President attributed the targeting, harassment, denial, and delay of tax-exempt status to nearly 300 Tea Party and other conservative groups (along with 6 liberal groups to make things look "unbiased", lol) to "bone-headed mistakes" on the part of the IRS.
Keeping the President's words in mind, I introduce you to Catherine Engelbrecht, small business owner and founder of King Steet Patriots, a Tea Party group that applied for tax exempt status. Engelbrecht testified last thursday before the House Oversight And Government Reform Committee looking into the IRS targeting allegations. Here is some of her testimony: