Thursday, February 2, 2012

Should Obama and the Democrats be Hopeful? Today's answer: NO

What’s new Today

Story #1 is a look at Romney and Obama as executives.  Needless to say if Obama was the head of a private company he would have been fired by now.  #2 goes contrary from the Democrat script that the Republican field is weak and states actually it is very strong.  #3 give the Democrats the reasons they shouldn’t be gaining hope.  The numbers still are horrible.  #4 talks about the poll of Obama’s approval on the economy.  It’s at 36%.  #5 is one of the crusades by Hollywood for a killer.  The timing makes me wonder if these people think Obama will lose in November so this would be a good time for him to pardon a cop killer.  #6 is a column by a leftwing columnist about why Obama is right to attack the Catholic Church.  I guess stupidity is epidemic among the left.  #7 is another story pointing out some of the weaknesses in China.  #8 has a number of pictures of the cold in Eastern Europe.  #9 is another attempt by warmists to counter the creaming they are taking in the press. 

1.  Romney vs Obama

Romney and Bain Capital were successful. Otherwise, investors would have stopped supplying them with millions of dollars to invest in various businesses.

Unlike tax dollars, which are paid to the federal government regardless of the desire of the taxpayer, the amount of investment given to a company such as Bain Capital is the result of free choice and is reflective of the investors' expectation that their investment will grow in value.

In other words, those who were supplying Bain Capital with investment dollars had confidence in the decisions and actions of Mitt Romney while he was leading Bain Capital.

Now let's consider Obama's fiscal job performance. Like Romney, who worked to turn around businesses that were struggling to grow, Obama, as he often reminds us, inherited a struggling economy. With three years as the "chief executive officer" of the largest economy, let's evaluate Obama's performance in the same way in which we evaluate a corporate executive such as Romney.

What about corporate debt? While corporate debt has its place in a business, such as to finance the expansion of a business unit, too much debt can quickly become detrimental to the corporation. President Barack Obama has overseen U.S. debt growth from  $10.6 trillion to $15.2 trillion. That represents a 43% increase in the total debt under the leadership of America's CEO. For the first time in history, the United States has received a downgrade of its sovereign debt rating, something thought nearly impossible prior to the Obama presidency.

Worse yet, total debt as a percentage of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has risen from 57% in 2000 to 94% in 2010 and now has passed 100%. We as a nation, under President Barack Obama, are nearly to the point in which we are borrowing more than we're producing.

Any CEO with these types of performance figures would, to say the least, have great difficulty in keeping his job. The shareholders of the company would want him ousted and would seek a new CEO with a proven track record of success. It would be inconceivable for the company to sign the CEO to a new four-year contract after his dismal performance….

In fact, it is Obama’s record that dooms his reelection chances. 

2.  The Republican Presidential Field

For the first time in my life, and I have been following Republican primaries closely since before I was old enough to vote, I have found myself vacillating among candidates.

Contrary to conventional wisdom, this is not from a lack of viable candidates, but from an excess. In November, I will gladly support whoever prevails. That includes Ron Paul, who, to the media's shock, already polls in a statistical dead heat with Barack Obama.

The man responsible for sharpening this year's field is Newt Gingrich. Were he not running, the other candidates would likely have contented themselves with wrapping pre-packaged platitudes around debate questions, much as candidates of both parties have done in every election post-Reagan. To get a sense of the unusual quality of this year's Republican field, watch a debate among the Democratic "dream" candidates of 2008 -- a bonfire of banalities if there ever was one.

Gingrich actually answers the questions. When asked by CNN's Jon King if he would like to address the allegations made by his ex-wife, Gingrich uttered four words that likely won him the South Carolina primary: "No. But I will." His sharpness exposed the relative dullness of early drop-outs like Pawlenty, Bachmann, Huntsman, and Perry. It also forced the survivors to hone their own speaking and debating skills. As Mitt Romney accurately argued in his Florida acceptance speech, "[a] competitive primary does not divide us. It prepares us."…

It is fun to watch the left get hopeful.  Right now you have the Republicans fighting among themselves while Obama sits on the sidelines.  Do they really think the slight upturn in Obama’s fortunes will stand when the Republicans start actually bringing him, his record, and his scandals into focus? 

3.  Why the Democrats should be worried

To hear Democrats (and much of the media) tell it, President Obama is a man on the rebound. The president turned in a strong State of the Union speech, picked a smart political fight over taxing the rich and authorized another heroic Navy SEAL mission in terrorist territory. Sounds like a recipe for reelection, they say.

There is a big problem with this Pollyanna punditry: There are a bunch of real-time numbers coming in that tell a much different tale.

In short, there’s a new CBO report that shows unemployment likely to climb to nearly 9 percent by the election, there’s polling data showing Obama tied or trailing Mitt Romney in the most important swing states (and doing only marginally better against Ron Paul), and there is mounting evidence that the assumption of a decisive Obama fundraising advantage for the fall might be flat wrong. All of this is happening while Republicans are at their worst, with Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich spending millions of dollars and using all of their air time explaining why the other is untrustworthy, deeply flawed and eminently beatable by Obama.

Let’s look at each:…

Obama is in trouble.  The current leftwing spin is the equivalent of whistling in the graveyard. 

4.   Obama economic approval at 36%

In another indication of the difficulty President Obama's reelection campaign faces, only 36 percent of likely voters grade the administration's handling of the economy at good or excellent, according to a new Rasmussen poll.

In a national survey of 1,000 likely voters January 31-February 1, a whopping 62 percent grade the president at fair to poor, with poor collecting the largest number: 45 percent.

Still, Democratic officials say that they see a positive trend built on slightly better unemployment and housing numbers that could end up helping Obama in his reelection….

From those numbers we see only 2% seem undecided.  And once again I say the Democrats are whistling in the graveyard. 

5.  Hollywood Urges Pardon for Cop Killer

On top of the campaign to pressure New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to release terrorist killer Judith Clark from prison, the far-left is asking President Obama to grant clemency to Leonard Peltier, an American Indian activist who was convicted of the execution-style murders of FBI Special Agents Jack Coler and Ronald Williams.

February 4 has been declared “International Day of Solidarity with Leonard Peltier,” who was sentenced to two consecutive terms of life imprisonment.

A group working for Peltier’s release, in an email to its supporters, says, “Several high-level meetings (some with Administration officials) are expected to occur in Washington, D.C., in early 2012.” No officials were named, however.

The campaign has the support of actor Danny Glover, whose film company, Louverture Films, has taken up the cause of freeing the convicted killer. The Glover company, which has received over $19.7 million from the Marxist regime of Hugo Chavez in Venezuela, is involved in the publicity campaign for “Wind Chases the Sun,” a film that glamorizes Peltier…

… The FBI has officially opposed any form of release or clemency for Peltier. In 2009, Thomas J. Harrington, FBI Executive Assistant Director in the Criminal, Cyber, Response, and Services Branch, testified in opposition to parole for Peltier, saying, “The intentional and vicious attack by Mr. Peltier was not simply a blatant attack on two FBI special agents; it was an attack on law enforcement as a whole—an attack on the rule of law. The inevitable haziness brought on by the passage of time does not diminish the brutality of the crimes or the lifelong torment to the surviving families”….

Now these kinds of celebrity causes happen frequently enough, but the timing of this one may indicate that the left is looking to an Obama defeat in November and they want to get him to act while he still can. 

6.   The Left Wing Empire Tries to Strike Back

Last Sunday, the Catholic Church declared war on President Obama. Republican Senator Marco Rubio of Florida quickly took up the cause, signaling the outlines of a serious religious rumble to come in 2012.

The president should be ready for the fight, knowing that on this one he is right.

At Sunday Mass, Catholic parishioners across the country were read letters denouncing the Obama administration’s recent decision to require religiously affiliated hospitals, colleges, and charities to offer health insurance coverage to employees for contraception and the “morning-after pill.’’ On Monday, Rubio, a Republican star who is often mentioned as a VP candidate, introduced a bill that would override the Obama policy by allowing religious institutions that morally oppose contraception to refuse to cover it.

But not all employees of Catholic institutions are Catholics. Why should their employers impose their religious beliefs on them and deny coverage for birth control and other medical care? As long as those Catholic institutions are getting taxpayer money, they should follow secular rules. That’s the Obama administration’s argument, and it makes sense….

What absolute nonsense.  A vegetarian could work at a steak restaurant and might be eligible for ½ price meals.  Should we force the steak restaurant to have a vegetarian menu?  In this case, if the employee is unhappy with their benefits, they can get a job somewhere else.  As for getting taxpayer money, they are also performing services for those taxpayers which saves lives.  This is the most stupid argument the left could come up with, but it is in fact about the only argument they could come up with, at least if you’ve read the first amendment. 

7.  The Economic Crisis Slowly Spreads to China

Although indicators showed the Chinese economy faltered only at the end of September, there had been a growing sense of pessimism inside the country for months before then. Beijing, after all, could build only so many “ghost cities” before citizens began to notice. As Joseph Sternberg of the Wall Street Journal Asia said on the John Batchelor Show last Wednesday, “people inside China seem to be losing faith in the Chinese growth story that we’ve been hearing so much about for the past few years.” Estimates of capital flight are sketchy, but it appears there was $34 billion of it in the third quarter of last year and a $100 billion in the fourth.

Not every Chinese citizen is in the position to export cash, so the next best tactic for the nervous is to buy gold, a refuge from plunging property prices and declining stock markets as well as an anticipated depreciation of their currency. “Within China,” notes  Michael Pettis of Peking University, “many are going to argue that the rapid decline in the trade surplus, coupled with unmistakable evidence of flight capital, means that the PBOC should devalue the RMB.” And the fact that China’s leaders in public are talking about the adverse impact of the European crisis on China weighs heavily on sentiment.

The worst thing about capital flight and gold purchases is that they drain liquidity out of the Chinese economy just when it is needed most. Beijing can continue to work its magic as long as strict capital controls keep money inside the country. Once they fail to do so, however, all bets are off. The purchasing of gold, of course, results in the exporting of cash….

China is a fascinating subject.  It is a coming power, but the underlying  shortcomings of its system certainly restrict where it can end up. 

8.  Baby its cold outside

We’ve had a mild winter in the USA so far.  But that doesn’t mean it is mild everywhere.  Some gorgeous pictures from around Europe of a harsh winter. 

9.  AGW:  Response to Trenberth letter

Trenberth argue:

Do you consult your dentist about your heart condition? In science, as in any area, reputations are based on knowledge and expertise in a field and on published, peer-reviewed work. If you need surgery, you want a highly experienced expert in the field who has done a large number of the proposed operations.

Wrong answer!!

If you need surgery you DON’T want “a highly experienced expert in the field who has done a large number of the proposed operations.” What you want is “a highly experienced expert in the field who has CONVINCING EVIDENCE THAT HIS OR HER OPERATIONS HAVE BEEN SUCCESSFUL!”

And if before I go to a dentist, I would like evidence that the dentist does not pull the wrong teeth (even on occasion).

Unfortunately, there is no convincing evidence that climate models can successfully predict future climate — and I mean “climate” not just “temperature.” [The latter is just one aspect of the climate and for many impacts it may not even be the most relevant.]

Climate models, which are the source of the apocalyptic vision of global warming, have not been validated using data that were not used in their development. Even the US Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) and the IPCC acknowledge as much. Specifically, the IPCC does not say that “all” features of current climate or past climate changes can be reproduced, as a reliable model of climate change ought to be able to do endogenously. In fact, it notes:

“… models still show significant errors. Although these are generally greater at smaller scales, important large scale problems also remain. For example, deficiencies remain in the simulation of tropical precipitation, the El Niño-Southern Oscillation and the Madden-Julian Oscillation (an observed variation in tropical winds and rainfall with a time scale of 30 to 90 days).” (AR4WG1, p. 601).

And the CCSP has this to say in its 2008 publication, Climate Models: An Assessment of Strengths and Limitations. A Report by the U.S. Climate Change Science Program and the Subcommittee on Global Change Research:

“Climate model simulation of precipitation has improved over time but is still problematic. Correlation between models and observations is 50 to 60% for seasonal means on scales of a few hundred kilometers.” (CCSP 2008:3)….

The use of ARGUMENTUM AD VERECUNDIAM or the appeal to authority is not scientific; it is a refuge of scoundrels. 

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