Saturday, June 25, 2011

Mark Steyn on the failed government class

If we hadn’t been assured by the New York Times that this man is the Greatest Orator of All Time, there would be something offensive in the leader of the Brokest Nation in History bragging that we’re not the guys to shirk a challenge, however grueling and demanding it may be, no sirree. The salient feature of America in the Age of Obama is a failed government class institutionally committed to living beyond its means, and a citizenry too many of whom are content to string along. Remember Peggy Joseph of Sarasota, Fla.? “I never thought this day would ever happen,” she gushed after an Obama rally in 2008. “I won’t have to worry about putting gas in my car. I won’t have to worry about paying my mortgage.” Is Peggy really the gal you’d want to hike a steep hill with?

Mark Steyn at National Review

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Al Gore in decline

It must be as perplexing to his many admirers as it is frustrating to himself that a man of Vice President Gore’s many talents, great skills and strong beliefs is one of the most consistent losers in American politics. . . . Gore has the Midas touch in reverse; objects of great value (Nobel prizes, Oscars) turn dull and leaden at his touch. Few celebrity cause leaders have had more or better publicity than Gore has had for his climate advocacy. Hailed by the world press, lionized by the entertainment community and the Global Assemblage of the Great and the Good as incarnated in the Nobel Peace Prize committee, he has nevertheless seen the movement he led flounder from one inglorious defeat to the next. The most recent, failed global climate meeting passed almost unnoticed last week in Bonn; the world has turned its eyes away from the expiring anguish of the Copenhagen agenda.

The state of the global green movement is shambolic. The Kyoto Protocol is withering on the vine; it will almost certainly die with no successor in place. There is no chance of cap and trade legislation in the US under Obama, and even the EPA’s regulatory authority over carbon dioxide is under threat. Brazil is debating a forestry law that critics charge will open the floodgates to a new round of deforestation in the Amazon. China is taking the green lobby head on, suspending a multibillion dollar Airbus order to protest EU carbon cutting plans.

Walter Russell Mead

The real James Bond

The Swiss suicide clinic and the £1.3m will riddle of the real-life James Bond

    In his 93 years Sir Peter Smithers was a spy, MP and renowned botanist. Now his death raises disturbing questions about euthanasia. Why did this real-life James Bond die with the help of a Swiss suicide clinic? And what lies behind the £1.3m High Court battle over his will?
    When Sir Peter Smithers, the spy who inspired the James Bond books, died peacefully at his Swiss villa five years ago, it went without saying that old age had claimed him. After all, he was a frail 93.
    As a close friend observed at the time, it was gloriously appropriate that he should pass away – ‘as he would have wished’ – surrounded by his cherished plants at Vico Morcote on a hillside above Lake Lugano in Switzerland.

    Read more: Sir Peter Smithers and his wife Dojean at their Knightsbridge home in 1963
    Devoted: Sir Peter Smithers and his wife Dojean at their Knightsbridge home in 1963
    In his long and colourful life, Yorkshire-born Sir Peter had been a naval intelligence agent, politician, diplomat, barrister and scholar. But his first love was botany and he was regarded as  one of the 20th Century’s greatest gardeners. Indeed, waggish friends called him The Spy Who Loved Magnolias.

    Read more:

    Some new under the sun, flipback book.

    The Kindle slayer? New 'flipback' book printed on wafer-thin Bible paper to take on high-tech competition

    Flipback book

    More on Fast and Furious. Another victim.

    NICE GOING, Holder: Another Smuggled ATF Gun Used In A Murder: “CBS News has confirmed that ATF Fast and Furious ‘walked’ guns have been linked to the terrorist torture and murder of the brother of a Mexican state attorney general last fall.”
    Worse than Iran/Contra.


    IMMIGRATION IN EUROPE GOES FULL CIRCLE? “Ten years ago, as Denmark joined the European Union’s visa-free open travel zone, the outraged Danish People’s Party bought a decommissioned border guardhouse, vowing that one day it would be in use again. Back then, most Danes dismissed the move as a colorful publicity stunt by the newly formed right-wing party. But last month, the Danish People’s Party was doing a victory dance, offering to donate its picturesque brick guardhouse at the German border to the government. The party had achieved its goal: Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen had agreed to restore 24-hour customs control in exchange for support on a difficult budget package.”

    How does the forecast get cut in half in a couple of months? Only the gov't can have this effect.

    Forecasts for Growth Drop, Some Sharply

    A drumbeat of disappointing data about consumer behavior, factory sales and weak hiring in recent weeks has prompted economists to ratchet down their 2011 economic forecasts to as little as half what they expected at the beginning of the year.
    What's Next?

    Two months ago, Goldman Sachs projected that the economy would grow at a 4 percent annual rate in the quarter ending in June. The company now expects the government to report no more than 2 percent growth when data for the second quarter is released in a few weeks.

    You can't spend your way to Prosperity, you can't tax your way to Prosperity, but we could get there if gov't would get out of the way.

    Obama: We Can't Just Cut Way to Prosperity

    Published: Saturday, 25 Jun 2011 | 9:55 AM ET
    Text Size
    President Barack Obama said Saturday he remained committed to working with Congress to find a solution to the government's debt problem, but the focus could not only be on spending cuts.

    Barack Obama

    I would read this as he has something on Holder

    Federal ATF Chief Resists Pressure to Step Down

    AP File
    By Richard A. Serrano, Los Angeles Times
    The acting director of the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is strongly resisting pressure to step down because of growing controversy over the agency's surveillance program that allowed U.S. guns to flow unchecked into Mexico, according to several federal sources in Washington.


    Obama Golfs for 13 Straight Weekends

    By Keith Koffler, White House Hossier
    President Obama hit the links today, making it 13 weekends in a row that he's gone golfing.
    As some of you speculated, with Michelle on safari in Africa, golf was pretty much a lock this weekend.

    Uh-oh, somethin's up!

    Judge Perry confers with defense attorneys in Anthony trial in Florida
    Casey Anthony trial delayed by unexplained … Reuters - 3 hrs ago

    ORLANDO, Florida (Reuters) - The Saturday session of Casey Anthony's first-degree murder trial was scuttled by an unspecified "legal issue" announced by Judge Belvin …More »

    Confederate sub upright for first time since 1864

    The Confederate submarine H.L. Hunley sits in its slings on Friday, June 24, 2011 at a conservation lab in North Charleston, S.C.The sub, the first in history to sink an enemy warship, was rotated upr

    Confederate sub upright for first time since 1864

    The first submarine in history to sink an enemy warship, H. L. Hunley, is upright for the first time in almost 150 years, revealing a side of its hull not seen since it sank off the South Carolina coast during the Civil War. (AP)

    He takes a licking and keeps on ticking

    Peppered by 150 shotgun pellets: Victim survives, but doctors warn he will die 25 years earlier because they cannot remove them

    Joe Clarke and pellets

    Joe Clarke, 33, survived the terrifying doorstep attack at his home in Consett, County Durham, England but doctors could not remove any of the pellets because some had penetrated his vital organs. Five men accused of plotting his murder in December 2007 have never faced trial after the actions of officers from Durham Police caused the case to collapse.

    Maybe they were looking for a donkey!

    Actions have consequences

    Obama Losing Dems on National Security at Critical Time

    The Obama administration tried to find solace in Friday's landmark votes on the Libya operation, holding up the fact that the House did not actually de-fund the mission as some semblance of an endorsement. 
    But the two votes Friday on Libya, coupled with the fierce backlash the president faced from his own party after announcing his Afghanistan withdrawal plan Wednesday, underscore the political trouble President Obama is in when it comes to national security. Though anti-war Democrats and anti-interventionist Republicans have long locked arms against U.S. military campaigns abroad, that bipartisan coalition is swelling -- in size and intensity.