Our #1 story describes the injustice in the Justice Department. #2 exposes how the Obama claim that the tax system is unfair may be true but in the opposite direction to the one Obama and the Democrats are crying bout. #3 raises a warning about the economy as it looks at the amount of gasoline we are consuming. #4 is another way of looking at the story of the week, regarding the Catholic Church and Obamacare. It appears the Democrats keep bringing up a subject that gets them beat up by the voters.
1. Voter Injustice
, a recent book by J. Christian Adams, provides shocking evidence of DOJ racial bias toward minorities and the failure to apply federal law in a race-neutral fashion. A five-year DOJ Voting Rights Section veteran, Adams cites his firsthand experience with officials who sought to promote a radical racialist agenda and who knowingly violated the National Voting Rights Act (NVRA). Adams sounds an alarm, arguing that the values and actions pursued by the DOJ jeopardize our constitutional republic and endanger America's core principles of government of the people, by the people, and for the people.
Violations of the voting process depicted in Adams' book are manifold and include incompetence, fraud, partisanship, and intimidation or thuggery. These rampant and pervasive problems warrant serious interventions to curb abuses of a right Americans hold sacrosanct. Fortunately, citizens' groups are becoming more involved in elections and have recognized the need to do more to protect the rights of the electorate under the law.
Problems with elections begin with poorly trained poll workers. The quality of training varies from district to district, which can significantly impact election integrity. Myriad government regulations and complicated logistical procedures create confusion among well-meaning poll workers as these people attempt to manage election operations. Incompetence can include poll workers improperly turning away legitimate voters or inadvertently admitting illegitimate voters. In states where voter IDs are not required or permitted, determining who is a legitimate voter can be a daunting if not impossible task. …
Voter fraud is widespread and has played a critical role in many close races. Abuses include registering more than once and voting multiple times; forced "assistance" of voters; suppression of the military vote; voting by felons, non-citizens, and the underaged; and voting using names of deceased voters or fictional people -- including cartoon characters and dogs….
An interesting article that lays out the fact the organizationds like ACORN are doing harm to the Republic. ACORN registered 12,000 illegals in Colorado alone
2. America’s Progressive Tax System
….Just one problem. On the topic in question, De Rugy is right and Chait is wrong.
Income taxes in America are more progressive than in other rich countries--according to an authoritative official study which, to my knowledge, has not been contradicted. The OECD's report "Growing Unequal” on poverty and inequality in industrial countries, includes a table that provides two measures of income tax progressivity in 2005. This is evidently the source of de Rugy's numbers. Here they are in an excel file. According to one measure, America's income taxes were the most progressive of the 24 countries in the sample, except for Ireland. According to the other, they were the most progressive full stop. (A more recent OECD report, "Divided we Stand ", uses different data, a smaller sample of countries and a different measure of progressivity: the results are similar.)
Liberals hate it when their narrative has holes poked in it. It is not likely that Chait or Krugman will climb down from the limb they have gone out on. Nor will the Occupy movement take note. Not even the Obama campaign will breathe a word of it.
America has an unfair tax system. That's their story and they're sticking to it.
This is a major thrust of Obama’s 2012 campaign. We’ve gone from Hope and Change to Fear and Envy. It appears Obama is trying to run on his wife’s comment that America is a Mean Nation.
3. Why Is Gasoline Consumption Tanking?
Mish recently posted some intriguing charts depicting a significant decline in gasoline consumption. Then correspondent Joe R. forwarded me this stunning chart of gasoline retail deliveries, from the U.S. Energy Information Administration: (EIA)
As Joe noted, this data is interesting because it is un-manipulated, that is, it is not "seasonally adjusted" or run through some black-box modifications like so much other government data.
Retail gasoline deliveries, already well below 1980 levels, have absolutely fallen off a cliff. Is the plunge inventory-related, i.e. are storage facilities so full that retailers are simply putting off deliveries?
Obama has already tried to take credit for bringing oil imports down. Of course oil production increases are happening on private and state lands (federal lands are down 35%), but the recession he’s kept us in apparently has had an effect per this story. What’s interesting is we are down to the point we were with Jimmy Carter and that was with the long gas lines.
4. Democrats keep pulling defeat from the Jaws of Victory
Somehow, the Democrats just can’t seem to keep reproductive politics from hijacking the health care debate.
They almost lost the health reform bill a couple of times over abortion, as anti-abortion Democrats came close to derailing the bill during the 2009 House debate and then again during the final passage in 2010.
And now, the Obama administration’s contraception rule has provoked such a massive fight with the Catholic Church and Republicans that it has been impossible for Democrats — or the media — to talk about anything else.
The compromise President Barack Obama announced Friday may allow the administration to move on to other things — or at least get the shouting under control for a while. But it’s also likely to reopen a debate about how the Democrats can find smarter strategies to avoid well-known landmines like abortion and contraception in the future.
Like, for example, not stepping on them….
I think there is another argument that needs to be breached. What is health care and when should insurance pay for it? I think everyone would agree that major illness should be covered. But do we really all agree on this? What about people who are at the end of their lives? Do they get the same healthcare as others? Should contraception be something the body politic should pay for? Or should that be something that each individual is responsible for? If we don’t have this discussion now, the ultimate result will be bureaucrats will tell us what their answers are and we will be going through this same thing over and over and over again.