Story #1 is on a huge story that I posted yesterday and one that is growing in importance. It has to do with Obamacare and the Catholic Church. This is really a stupid move by Obama in an election year. #2 basically tells you it doesn’t matter who wins the GOP primaries because whoever the Republican is, they will be president. It isn’t a question of can that person beat Obama. They can. #3 is also a breaking story. It seem Freddie Mac is making money by keeping people in high rate mortgages. It isn’t what they are supposed to do and it is contributing to the housing decline. #4 comes from a Rasmussen poll. It seems the poor consume like everyone else, that is they have much of the creature comforts of the 21st Century. #5 is the latest on the Occupy Movement.
1. Obama Double-crosses Catholics
… Catholic leaders are still trying to process the implications of this ambush. The president had every opportunity to back down from confrontation. In the recent Hosanna-Tabor ruling, a unanimous Supreme court reaffirmed a broad religious autonomy right rooted in the Constitution. Obama could have taken the decision as justification for retreat.
And it would have been a minor retreat. The administration was on the verge of mandating nearly universal contraceptive coverage through Obamacare without public notice. There would have been no controversy at all if President Obama had simply exempted religious institutions and ministries. But the administration insisted that the University of Notre Dame and St. Mary’s Hospital be forced to pay for the privilege of violating their convictions…
… Both radicalism and maliciousness are at work in Obama’s decision — an edict delivered with a sneer. It is the most transparently anti-Catholic maneuver by the federal government since the Blaine Amendment was proposed in 1875 — a measure designed to diminish public tolerance of Romanism, then regarded as foreign, authoritarian and illiberal….
It seems Obama is intent on insulting every potential constituent group in America.
2. The GOP primaries: It doesn’t matter
…Mitt Romney will beat Barack Obama because a majority of the country already knows that the president is an epic failure at his job, and a thin-skinned, self-absorbed ideologue to boot.
All the noise about Romney's wealth and the nonsense about his "effective tax rate" won't make a lick of difference to a voter afraid of losing his or her job or fearing for their children's future.
All the left's harrumphing about Bain just isn't going matter to a country desperate for competence and character, discipline and the values of hard work, thrift and sacrifice.
Everybody already knows everything the Chicago gang is going to throw at Romney thanks to Newt. After the intensity of the nomination battle drains away, the focus will shift back to the president's massive incompetence, and ho-him will be the response when yet another Democrat with talking points about Romney tries to evade the reality of an unemployment rate that have never been below 8 percent when the president promised it would never go above that level.
To his great credit, Newt hasn't played the anti-Mormon card and the left certainly will, but that, too, is drained of its power after the campaign of 2008 and the pulverizing realities of the economic mismanagement of the past three years.
When Truman was forced from office, just as LBJ was, and when Carter and George H.W. Bush were denied second terms, the elections were about the overwhelming sense that the country needed a U-turn.
That's what the cover on Time proclaimed when below the smiling picture of Reagan on its November 17, 1980, election "special edition" appeared the words "A Fresh Start."
That is what November's vote will be about as well, and the memories and relevance of the primary battles will be long gone. The GOP's primary battles didn't matter in 1952 or 1980, and they won't matter in 2012
Obama is toast. When the actual campaign begins, expect Obama to throw everything he can against the Republicans, and expect the Republicans to let you hear Obama saying over and over again all the miraculous things he was going to do. And then expect the announcer to tell you what the actual numbers are.
3. Freddie Mac betting against Homeowners
...Freddie Mac, a taxpayer-owned mortgage company, is supposed to make homeownership easier. One thing that makes owning a home more affordable is getting a cheaper mortgage.
But Freddie Mac has invested billions of dollars betting that U.S. homeowners won't be able to refinance their mortgages at today's lower rates, according to an investigation by NPR and ProPublica, an independent, nonprofit newsroom.
These investments, while legal, raise concerns about a conflict of interest within Freddie Mac.
"We were actually shocked they did this," says Scott Simon, who heads the mortgage-backed securities team at the giant bond trading and investment firm called PIMCO. "It seemed so out of line with their mission, out of line with what Congress wanted them to do."…
….public documents show that in 2010 and 2011, Freddie Mac set out to make gains for its own investment portfolio by using complex mortgage securities that brought in more money for Freddie Mac when homeowners in higher interest-rate loans were unable to qualify for a refinancing.
Those trades "put them squarely against the homeowner," PIMCO's Simon says.
Freddie Mac's trades came at a time when mortgage rates were falling to record lows. Millions of homeowners wish they could refinance, but their lenders tell them they can't qualify for today's low rates because of tight rules. Freddie Mac is one of the gatekeepers with the power to set those rules, and lately, it has been saying no more often to homeowners….
If you read my blog you know how I feel about Fannie and Freddie. But this one is totally new to me. We really need to abolish both Freddie and Fannie.
4. Poor consume like everyone else
Says Rasmussen, “About 40 million Americans are officially defined as living below the poverty line. Yet most of those have adequate levels of food, shelter, clothing and medical care. Sixty-three percent of American adults believe such a family is not living in poverty,” he writes. “Only 16 percent believe that a family is living in poverty if it has two color televisions, cable or satellite TV, a DVD player, and a VCR, but that’s what the average family living in poverty has as defined by the U.S. government,” he adds.
Rasmussen, who condemns Washington for ignoring the public’s will to run out sky-high deficits, doesn’t mean to criticize households with earnings of $22,314, the 2010 poverty level for a family of four, but finds that the nation believes too much is being spent on welfare.
According to his polling in the new book, 71 percent believe too many are receiving federal welfare benefits and would like to see official measures of poverty tightened to reduce the number of eligible participants.
The president, however, is going the other way and even reviving plans to help homeowners refinance their mortgages, an idea similar to a stimulus-era idea that in part led to the Tea Party movement. Plus, Rasmussen reveals, the administration’s spending on means-tested programs like food stamps, public housing assistance, weatherization spending and others “is slated to continue growing dramatically even after the recession comes to an end.”
I think what shows the hardships the poor go through. How many people not in poverty have a VCR?
5. Is OWS just like the TEA Party? I don’t think so
Not only are the occupiers, who represent 1% of Americans, destructive, as shown by the recent Oakland, California rampage they are filled with hate and bigotry.
Listen to an occupier recite this twisted, prejudicial "Pledge" while happily burning the American flag. Not too surprisingly, not even our quoted article yesterday on the Oakland occupiers mentioned it.
“I pledge allegiance to a flag of the imperialistic, capitalistic dictatorship.
And to the plutocracy for which it stands, depravity owned central bank, under the Jews.
With inequality and injustice for the 99.”
It appears the left version of the TEA Party is all the things the left thinks the TEA Party is.