PRIEBUS: Obama’s ‘gaffes’ are what he truly believes – Washington Times

 

PRIEBUS: Obama’s ‘gaffes’ are what he truly believes – Washington Times.

Calls for context are meant to mask economic misunderstanding

By Reince Priebus

Every few weeks, President Obama is caught off-script speaking his mind.

This month, he insulted entrepreneurs, saying, “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”

Last month, he astonished the unemployed, insisting, “The private sector is doing fine.”

The Obama campaign’s response is predictable. “Context!” is yelled every time the president is caught off-message. The president isn’t out of touch, they insist. He’s simply out of context.

Of course, voters will decide for themselves if the president lacks a real understanding of — and commitment to — the economy. To help, let’s look at a little context.

Mr. Obama has not held a single meeting of his jobs council in more than six months. White House press secretary Jay Carney excuses the president by saying he has “a lot on his plate.” Indeed. Since the last jobs council meeting, he has attended 111 campaign fundraisers and enjoyed 10 golf outings. At the last jobs council meeting, Mr. Obama said, “This has not been a show council. This has been a work council.” But as it happens, context proves otherwise.

The president has called the economy his “overriding focus” and No. 1 priority. It’s surprising, then, that he has not received a presidential briefing on the economy in well over a year. The last time “Economic Daily Briefing” appeared on his official White House schedule was April 26, 2011.

If the president doesn’t bother taking the time to hear what’s happening to the economy, he cannot expect to fix it. You cannot find a solution if you don’t understand the problem. And when you don’t understand the problem, you say things like, “The private sector is doing fine.”

For 41 straight months, the unemployment rate has exceeded 8 percent. Today, 23 million Americans are struggling to find work. But the president has no time for his jobs council or even an economic briefing. He does have time, however, for swanky soirees full of celebrities, stars and the Hollywood glitterati.

Obama fundraisers regularly feature the likes of George Clooney, Julia Roberts, Eva Longoria, Spike Lee, Oprah Winfrey, Anna Wintour and Cher. Celebrities may make for good company, but they are hardly qualified to offer economic advice.

Americans are growing increasingly frustrated with the president. A recent poll from the Hill newspaper found “53 percent of voters say President Obama has taken the wrong actions and has slowed the economy down.”

From Obamacare’s rules and tax increases to the Environmental Protection Agency’s heavy-handed regulations, President Obama indeed has taken the wrong actions since taking office. His reckless spending has added more than $5.2 trillion to the national debt and earned America our first credit downgrade in history. His only plans for his second term are tax increases.

Looking at the whole picture, it’s clear the president’s comments are not gaffes. They are what he really believes. He’s detached from American economic reality, and it’s taking a toll on our country.

The Obama administration and campaign can make excuses all they want, but the facts are clear. Mr. Obama shows insufficient commitment to job creation. He demonstrates a misunderstanding of the economy. It’s all right there in the context.

Reince Priebus is chairman of the Republican National Committee.

 

New Polling Data Shows How to Fight Obama’s Class Warfare – Daniel J. Mitchell – Townhall Finance Conservative Columnists and Financial Commentary

taxes

taxes (Photo credit: 401K)

New Polling Data Shows How to Fight Obama’s Class Warfare – Daniel J. Mitchell – Townhall Finance Conservative Columnists and Financial Commentary.

Since starting this blog, I’ve periodically shared polling data that gives me hope. Highlights include:

o More than two-to-one support for personal retirement accounts.

o Recognition that big government is the greatest danger to America’s future.

o An increasingly negative view of the federal government.

o More than eight-to-one support for less spending rather than higher taxes.

o Strong support for bureaucrat layoffs and/or entitlement reforms instead of higher taxes.

o And my favorite poll results are the ones showing that voters understand that the goal is less spending, not lower deficits.

Now there’s some new research that is both encouraging and educational. Here’s part of the report from The Hill.

Three-quarters of likely voters believe the nation’s top earners should pay lower, not higher, tax rates, according to a new poll for The Hill. The big majority opted for a lower tax bill when asked to choose specific rates; precisely 75 percent said the right level for top earners was 30 percent or below. The current rate for top earners is 35 percent. Only 4 percent thought it was appropriate to take 40 percent, which is approximately the level that President Obama is seeking from January 2013 onward. The Hill Poll also found that 73 percent of likely voters believe corporations should pay a lower rate than the current 35 percent… Republicans were more likely than Democrats to support lower tax rates for the wealthy, but voters in both parties solidly supported lower rates compared to current law. Eighty-one percent of Republicans favored tax rates below current levels, compared to 70 percent of Democrats. The Hill Poll, conducted by Pulse Opinion Research of 1,000 likely voters, also found broad support for lower rates across income groups. The group most supportive of lowering tax rates on the wealthy below current rates made between $20,000 and $40,000 a year; 81 percent supported tax rates of 30 percent or lower.

This data is important because it shows the value of framing an issue. Instead of defensively responding to Obama’s class warfare, proponents of good tax policy should be making a philosophical/economic point that “nobody in America, no matter how rich or how poor, should have to pay more than one-fourth of their income to government.”

And proponents of class warfare should be put on the spot and asked “what do you think is the maximum tax rate anyone should pay?”

Last but not least, friends of liberty should make the key point that higher tax rates on the so-called rich are merely precursors for higher tax rates on everyone else – as even the New York Times recently admitted.

Mr. and Mrs. Cranky Pants – Michelle Malkin – Townhall Conservative

 

President Barack Obama and the First Lady Mich...

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Mr. and Mrs. Cranky Pants – Michelle Malkin – Townhall Conservative.

So, it turns out that the cool cat billed as “No Drama Obama” by his sycophants is actually quite the drama queen. While the White House publicly pretends to ignore conservative detractors of his administration, Chief Touchy-Touchy seems to be personally consumed by our critiques. Yes, mine included.

On Wednesday, the president had himself a mini-“Toddlers and Tiaras”-style meltdown with Arizona GOP Gov. Jan Brewer after landing in Phoenix for a post-State of the Union dog-and-pony show. As Brewer told pool reporters on the scene, Obama took umbrage at Brewer’s recent memoir. She minced no words on the cover: “Scorpions for Breakfast: My Fight Against Special Interests, Liberal Media, and Cynical Politicos to Secure America’s Border.”

And she minced no words describing her impressions of Obama as they sparred over her state’s tough immigration enforcement law, which is now the subject of a Justice Department witch-hunt. Brewer called Obama “patronizing” and “condescending.” I’d say she was excruciatingly polite.

According to Brewer, “He was a little disturbed about my book. … I said to him that I have all the respect in the world for the office of the president. The book is what the book is. I asked him if he read the book. He said he read (an) excerpt.” In the shadow of Air Force One, Obama complained that Brewer hadn’t “treated him cordially” and then stalked off while she was responding mid-sentence.

Photogs captured the fracas on film. The civility police gasped at Brewer’s “disrespectful” finger-pointing. On cue, one progressive commentator insinuated the gesture was a “racist” jab tantamount to lynching.

The president was singing a more laid-back tune last summer. As debate on Capitol Hill over the debt ceiling and spending sizzled, Obama bragged to reporters: “I’m not trying to poke at you guys. … I generally don’t watch what is said about me on cable. I generally don’t read what’s said about me even in The Hill (newspaper), so part of this job is having a thick skin and understanding that a lot of this stuff is not personal.”

Uh-huh. At least two other Republican governors — Rick Perry of Texas and Bobby Jindal of Louisiana — have recounted similar presidential snit fits on the tarmac. He sulked over a letter Jindal wrote to the administration about food stamps for Gulf oil spill victims; he bolted after a half-minute meeting with Perry at an Austin airport over border security issues.

You know those “petty grievances” of “Washington politics” that Obama has long condemned? Now it can be told: He knows whereof he squawks.

As New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor‘s new book, “The Obamas,” reveals, the president and his inner circle spent even more time carping about conservative influence on public opinion. “He wanted the media to be more of a referee; to put unfair Republican charges to rest,” Kantor discovered. “He could brush off the wildest, most baseless attacks themselves, he told (senior adviser and Chicago pal) Valerie Jarrett, along with (campaign finance bundler and treasurer) Marty Nesbitt and (bundler and finance mogul) John Rogers, at lunch in the little dining room next to the Oval Office.”

But what “galled him,” the book observed, “was when they gained mainstream credibility despite distortions of truth.”

Kantor then dutifully served as a pro-Obama referee:

“Rogers had just noticed a new book by the conservative columnist Michelle Malkin called ‘Culture of Corruption: Obama and His Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks and Cronies.’ Among many other allegations, Malkin wrote that Michelle Obama — the president’s ‘bitter half’ — was secretly running the country in Lady Macbeth-like fashion. Malkin even took a hatchet to long-dead Fraser Robinson (Mrs. Obama‘s father), arguing with no evidence that his job at a water plant made him part of the ‘Chicago political corruptocracy.’ The book debuted at number one on The New York Times nonfiction bestseller list and stayed there for weeks.”

The facts? It was a former alderman in Chicago, Leon Depres, who provided evidence that Robinson’s job in the city water department was a reward for loyalty to the Daley political faction.

It was Washington Post writer Liza Mundy who reported that the department was “a renowned repository of patronage jobs.”

It’s the Illinois press that has long documented Mrs. Obama’s ties to the Chicago machine. It’s Kantor herself who spotlighted the first lady’s internecine warfare with her husband’s Cabinet. And from her meddling in everything from the AmeriCorps inspector general firing case to her aggressive, Big Labor-backed push for a publicly subsidized food police corps, Michelle Obama has been openly expanding her East Wing fiefdom in Marie Antoinette-like fashion.

How long before we see a FLOTUS tarmac tantrum? We did get two divas for the price of one. As longtime observers of the royal Obamas have long observed: Mr. and Mrs. Cranky Pants’ problem has never been the color of their skin. It’s the thinness.

America in Decline – Bill O’Reilly – Townhall Conservative

America in Decline – Bill O’Reilly – Townhall Conservative.

According to a new poll by The Hill newspaper, 69 percent of Americans now believe the USA is in “decline.” In addition, a whopping 83 percent indicate they are worried about America’s future.

Very sobering. So what’s going on?

If you study history, you know that America was built on self-reliance and personal achievement. In the early years of the Republic, the federal and state governments pretty much stayed out of the way as folks built businesses and communities. There were absolutely no public safety nets. If you failed, it was up to you to survive.

Because of that circumstance, the citizens of America became strong. The motto “Don’t Tread On Me” was absolutely appropriate. Hardship was accepted as a part of life. Self-sacrifice for the good of others was the order of the day. Cowardice and narcissism were condemned everywhere.

And so the world’s greatest and strongest country was built. Not by pinheaded bureaucrats, but by the blood and sacrifice of hardworking folks. Each generation had strong role models to follow. There were rules of conduct, and there was a dominant Judeo-Christian signpost. As Superman well knew, it was “truth, justice and the American way.”

But things have changed.

The collapse of tradition began in the late 1960s when the Vietnam War raged. For the first time, Americans could see the horrors of combat in their living rooms. And that war was largely undefined, especially for younger people. What the heck was the USA doing in Southeast Asia? Why were young men being drafted into a conflict few understood? In order to win any war, you need dynamic leadership. President Lyndon Johnson failed to provide it.

Out went the baby with the bath water. In came drugs, free love and a suspicion of authority. No longer was the United States a noble nation in the eyes of many of its own citizens who began to see their country as an oppressor.

America became a divided nation. Traditions eroded quickly, as many people began doing their “own thing.” No longer was there a widely accepted code of conduct.

Self-reliance remained the key to success in our capitalistic system, but for those who declined to compete, the federal government stepped in to lend support. As the family structure collapsed, entitlements became more common, as children and single mothers had to be supported. The vexing issues of racial inequality and persistent poverty brought about ultra-expensive social engineering. Liberal Americans looked to the Western European model of cradle-to-grave support as a panacea for “income inequality.” The view that Washington has a moral obligation to provide a decent lifestyle for everyone took root.

That philosophy, currently embraced by President Obama, has led to massive debt, which, in turn, has created chaos in the private marketplace. In this world, a strong economic base is the foundation of power. America has lost that base.

And so, once again, the folks are right. The United States is in decline. And only we the people can reverse that. We have to depend on ourselves.