Monday, July 23, 2012

Bain, Bain, go away....

What’s New Today

Story #1 asks if the Bain attacks by Obama are working.  #2 is a Gallup Poll that says no they aren’t.  #3 looks at the strategies used by each camp.  Is Romney playing a rope a dope on Obama?  #4 tells you the real story of how the internet came into being.  #5 is an excellent ad by Scott Walker that Romney needs to take national.  #6 is more bad polling news for Obama.  #7 takes a look at Obama’s charge that Bush got us into the mess we are in and looks for the truth.  Did he or didn’t he?  #8 looks at the left’s paranoia regarding the Tea Party.  #9 goes on to look at fracking and the health risks.  It seems the left is the party of science except when they don’t like the answer science gives them. 

Today’s Thoughts

In a recent Rasmussen poll, it was found that Obama’s approval rating among uncommitted voters is a scant 29%.  What this means is that when the election happens you can count on Romney getting about 3 out 4 uncommitted voters.  

"Before I refuse to take your questions, I have an opening statement."  Ronald Reagan researched the Obama assertions and reported that “we found no evidence to support the claim that Romney — while he was still running Bain Capital — shipped American jobs overseas.”  

The CBS/NYT poll shows 56 percent of Republicans are enthusiastic about voting in November, compared to just 27 percent of Democrats.  This is a very important number.  Obama’s strategy is to get a huge turnout which isn’t likely with those numbers.

1.  Are Obama’s Bain attacks working?

 Over the past few weeks, President Obama and his campaign team have launched a furious attack on Mitt Romney's record as head of Bain Capital, a highly successful venture capital firm.
There is clear evidence that the attacks have had some impact. Forty-one percent of voters now see Romney’s record in the private sector primarily as a reason to vote for him, but an equal number see that record as a reason to vote against the GOP challenger. That negative perception is up 8 points over the past couple of months.

Yet while raising negative perceptions of Romney's record in business, the Bain attacks have failed to bring about any change in the overall race for the White House. For weeks, the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll has shown the president's support stuck between 44 percent and 46 percent every day. Romney's numbers are in a similar rut -- 44 percent to 47 percent.

One reason for the lack of impact is that the Bain attacks have not reached a point where they raise doubts about Romney's character. Sixty-seven percent of voters believe the former governor of Massachusetts is at least as ethical as most politicians. Comparing Romney to other politicians may not be setting the bar very high, but that's his peer group these days. Using the same standard, the president doesn't measure up quite as well: Just 60 percent believe he is at least as ethical as most politicians….

It appears that while Obama’s attacks may be hurting the public perception of Romney, they appear to be hurting Obama’s as well.  Being 7% behind Romney on being at least as ethical as most politicians represents a huge drop for Obama. 

2.  Gallup says Bain attacks aren’t working
WASHINGTON – Despite concerted Democratic attacks on his business record, Republican challenger Mitt Romney scores a significant advantage over President Obama when it comes to managing the economy, reducing the federal budget deficit and creating jobs, a national USA TODAY/Gallup Poll finds.

Mitt Romney is preferred over President Obama on the economy, despite attacks on his record at Bain Capital, according to a new USA TODAY/Gallup Poll.

By more than 2-1, 63%-29%, those surveyed say Romney's background in business, including his tenure at the private equity firm Bain Capital, would cause him to make good decisions, not bad ones, in dealing with the nation's economic problems over the next four years.

The findings raise questions about Obama's strategy of targeting Bain's record in outsourcing jobs and hammering Romney for refusing to commit to releasing more than two years of his tax returns. Instead, Americans seem focused on the economy, where disappointment with the fragile recovery and the 8.2% unemployment rate are costing the president.

To be sure, Obama retains significant advantages of his own. By 2-1, he's rated as more likable than Romney. By double digits, those surveyed say the president better understands the problems Americans face in their daily lives. He has an 8-point advantage on being seen as honest and trustworthy.
However, Romney has the edge when it comes to being able to "get things done," and the broad landscape seems tilted in his favor:…

This poll is a disaster for Obama.  With the economy playing such an important role it is almost inconceivable that Obama would be reelected in November.   

3.  Romney’s Rumble in the Jungle

Remember the famous "Rumble in the Jungle," where an aging Muhammad Ali outfoxed a youthful, overeager George Foreman in one of the greatest fights of all time?...

…When they finally entered the ring, Ali astonished everybody by cowering against the ropes and letting Foreman beat him mercilessly. To this day it is not clear whether Ali's corner knew what was going on -- they kept yelling at him to get off the ropes and move around. For eight rounds Ali took literally hundreds of blows until Foreman had punched himself silly. Then he suddenly jumped off the ropes and decked the arm-weary Foreman with a flurry of five punches.

That's the kind of fight Mitt Romney should be fighting -- and is fighting -- against Barack Obama.
There is no sense in trying to match Obama, gutter-punch for gutter-punch. The Obama team has obviously decided (what else could they do?) that the President cannot run on his record. Therefore the only thing to do is hit Romney with whatever comes to hand. There won't be any attempt to be logical or consistent. Anything that turns up they will throw at him.

Thus, when the Boston Globe runs a stupid story saying Romney was "lying to the American people" because his name appeared on Bain Capital SEC filings after he had left the firm to run the Salt Lake Olympics, Obama's team didn't wait a day before announcing Romney had "committed a felony" and "should go to jail." When it turns out Fortune had already vetted the whole issue six months ago and it involved nothing more than a procedural matter -- well, on to the next issue.

Obama is punching himself silly. He has reached the point where he is ad libbing and that puts him out of control. His now famous outburst about "You didn't build that [business]" -- which may have been the turning point in the campaign -- was right off the top of his head. You know perfectly well he's been saying the same things for years with Valerie Jarrett and Bill Ayers. It's only his careful self-censorship that has kept these things under control. Now he's losing it…

Not only is Obama losing it, he is also losing his likeability.  You cannot conduct such a negative campaign of throwing mud without getting dirty yourself.  

4.  Obama was wrong; the government didn’t create the Internet

….That fired imaginations, and by the 1960s technologists were trying to connect separate physical communications networks into one global network—a "world-wide web." The federal government was involved, modestly, via the Pentagon's Advanced Research Projects Agency Network. Its goal was not maintaining communications during a nuclear attack, and it didn't build the Internet.  Robert Taylor, who ran the ARPA program in the 1960s, sent an email to fellow technologists in 2004 setting the record straight: "The creation of the Arpanet was not motivated by considerations of war. The Arpanet was not an Internet. An Internet is a connection between two or more computer networks."

If the government didn't invent the Internet, who did? Vinton Cerf developed the TCP/IP protocol, the Internet's backbone, and Tim Berners-Lee gets credit for hyperlinks.

But full credit goes to the company where Mr. Taylor worked after leaving ARPA: Xerox. It was at the Xerox PARC labs in Silicon Valley in the 1970s that the Ethernet was developed to link different computer networks. Researchers there also developed the first personal computer (the Xerox Alto) and the graphical user interface that still drives computer usage today.
According to a book about Xerox PARC, "Dealers of Lightning" (by Michael Hiltzik), its top researchers realized they couldn't wait for the government to connect different networks, so would have to do it themselves. "We have a more immediate problem than they do," Robert Metcalfe told his colleague John Shoch in 1973. "We have more networks than they do." Mr. Shoch later recalled that ARPA staffers "were working under government funding and university contracts. They had contract administrators . . . and all that slow, lugubrious behavior to contend with." 

So having created the Internet, why didn't Xerox become the biggest company in the world? The answer explains the disconnect between a government-led view of business and how innovation actually happens….

As for the government's role, the Internet was fully privatized in 1995, when a remaining piece of the network run by the National Science Foundation was closed—just as the commercial Web began to boom. Economist Tyler Cowen wrote in 2005: "The Internet, in fact, reaffirms the basic free market critique of large government. Here for 30 years the government had an immensely useful protocol for transferring information, TCP/IP, but it languished. . . . In less than a decade, private concerns have taken that protocol and created one of the most important technological revolutions of the millennia."…

A fascinating piece which explains what actually happened.  Al Gore didn’t invent the internet nor did the Defense Department.  Government and academia worked too slowly for the private sector and they took over and commercialized it in less than a decade.  So when Obama says the government created the internet, we can say “you didn’t build that,” and we will be a lot more accurate than BHO and the Democrats.

5.  This should go national 

This is a Scott Brown ad, but it works for Mitt Romney as well.  Watch it, it’s worth the time. 

6.  Why Obama will lose in November

Two-thirds of likely voters say the weak economy is Washington’s fault, and more blame President Obama than anybody else, according to a new poll for The Hill.

It found that 66 percent believe paltry job growth and slow economic recovery is the result of bad policy. Thirty-four percent say Obama is the most to blame, followed by 23 percent who say Congress is the culprit. Twenty percent point the finger at Wall Street, and 18 percent cite former President George W. Bush. …

The poll, conducted for The Hill by Pulse Opinion Research, found 53 percent of voters say Obama has taken the wrong actions and has slowed the economy down. Forty-two percent said he has taken the right actions to revive the economy, while six percent said they were not sure.

It’s over for Obama and the Democrats.  53% think Obama has taken the wrong actions and if you look at the election Obama is doubling down on what he’s done.  How do you vote for Obama to continue the actions you think are harming the economy?  You don’t. 

7.  How Did Bush get us into this Mess?

A key attack line in President Obama's campaign stump speech these days is to claim that the country has tried Mitt Romney's economic policies already, and they were a dismal failure.
Romney, he says, wants to do two things: Cut taxes for the rich and massively deregulate the economy.

"The truth is," Obama says, "we tried (that) for almost a decade, and it didn't work."
Bush-era tax cuts and deregulation, he argues "resulted in the most sluggish job growth in decades" along with "rising inequality, surpluses turned into deficits, culminating in the worst economic crisis in our lifetimes."
There's just one problem. Obama's got his history wrong.

First, Bush was no big deregulator.

In fact, under Bush, the size and cost of the federal government's regulatory machinery increased dramatically, as Bush imposed dozens of major new rules…

…To be sure, much of the Bush-era regulatory increase came as a result of the government's takeover of airport security in the wake of 9/11. But even excluding that, federal regulatory spending climbed 30% and regulatory jobs jumped 11% under Bush.

In addition, an analysis by the Heritage Foundation found that Bush-era regulations imposed about $30 billion in new economic costs.

One of them, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, imposed vast new rules on the accounting and securities businesses, generating at least 20 new rule makings at the Securities and Exchange Commission. Sarb-Ox has been widely blamed for reducing the number of U.S. initial public offerings.

"Far from shrinking to dangerously low levels, regulation grew substantially during the Bush years," noted Heritage's regulatory expert James Gattuso.

The left has a great deal of difficulty dealing with the actual facts.  They’d much rather make their charges and hope no one calls them on it.  Certainly the MSM won’t so what are they worried about?  Romney is taking in more money that Obama is over the past two month.  Romney and the Republicans will have the money to put on ads that actually tell the American public what the facts are.  That is what Obama is scared of.

8.  The Left’s paranoia of the Tea Party

Whenever a new cause or movement is born, and a large number of people feel passionate about it, there's always the danger that it will inspire someone -- perhaps just a lone nut, or perhaps a group of them -- to destroy human life in its name. This is true even of the most legitimate, mainstream movements, which can suffer unjustly by the actions of a rogue sympathizer.

Someday this may happen to the Tea Party movement. So far it hasn't, because there has been no Tea Party violence. The only victims of Tea Party "extremism" are politicians who lost their positions in peaceful elections. One could be forgiven for not knowing this, given the extreme bias with which some in the liberal media treat the Tea Party….

In February 2010, a man named Joseph Stack committed suicide by flying his small airplane into an IRS building in Austin, Texas. New York Magazine, after reading his online suicide note, immediately declared that "a lot of his rhetoric could have been taken directly from a handwritten sign at a tea party rally." The Washington Post's Jonathan Capehart added that "his alienation is similar to that we're hearing from the extreme elements of the Tea Party movement." Neither mentioned that Stack had approvingly quoted "The Communist Manifesto" and denounced capitalism in his last message to the world. That may be a relevant detail if you're trying to blame his crime on a movement that believes the opposite.

Months later, right after the famous attempt to bomb Times Square, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg suggested it had been carried out by someone "with a political agenda who doesn't like the health care bill or something." The would-be bomber, a Pakistani immigrant, later said in court: "If I'm given a thousand lives, I will sacrifice them all for the life of Allah."

The following January, a shooter in Tucson wounded Rep. Gabby Giffords, D-Ariz., and killed six others. In all his wisdom, Paul Krugman leaped to judgment immediately: "We don't have proof yet that this was political, but the odds are that it was." He insinuated on his New York Times blog that Tea Party activists were back to finish the job after Giffords survived the 2010 election sweep. In fact, the killer was a deranged loner with no coherent political ideology, and no connection to the Tea Party.

All that has happened since the Tea Party began -- and all that hasn't happened -- undermines the credibility of Krugman, Ross, Capehart, and other pundits who carelessly associate it with violence. When we try to explain violence like last week's theater massacre, we look to irrationality as the first explanation. It takes a uniquely arrogant sort of journalist to use this same irrationality to explain anyone who disagrees with him politically.

The left is aching to connect the Tea Party with violence.  But violence is much more of a left wing “tool.”  Look at Occupy Wall Street.  The known violence there is brushed aside by the MSM and attributed to a few kooks or elements that weren’t really OWS.  Can you image what would happen if someone who was a member of the tea party did something like that? 

9.  Fracking:  the Debate

…"The debate is becoming very emotional. And basically not using science" on either side, said Avner Vengosh, a Duke University professor studying groundwater contamination who has been praised and criticized by both sides.

Shale gas drilling has attracted national attention because advances in technology have unlocked billions of dollars of gas reserves, leading to a boom in production, jobs, and profits, as well as concerns about pollution and public health. Shale is a gas-rich rock formation thousands of feet underground, and the gas is freed through a process called hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in which large volumes of water, plus sand and chemicals, are injected to break the rock apart.

The Marcellus Shale covers large parts of Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio and West Virginia, while the Barnett Shale is in north Texas. Many other shale deposits have been discovered.
One of the clearest examples of a misleading claim comes from north Texas, where gas drilling began in the Barnett Shale about 10 years ago.

Opponents of fracking say breast cancer rates have spiked exactly where intensive drilling is taking place — and nowhere else in the state. The claim is used in a letter that was sent to New York's Gov. Andrew Cuomo by environmental groups and by Josh Fox, the Oscar-nominated director of "Gasland," a film that criticizes the industry. Fox, who lives in Brooklyn, has a new short film called "The Sky is Pink."

But researchers haven't seen a spike in breast cancer rates in the area, said Simon Craddock Lee, a professor of medical anthropology at the U of T Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.

David Risser, an epidemiologist with the Texas Cancer Registry, said in an email that researchers checked state health data and found no evidence of an increase in the counties where the spike supposedly occurred.

And Susan G. Komen for the Cure, a major cancer advocacy group based in Dallas, said it sees no evidence of a spike, either.

"We don't," said Chandini Portteus, Komen's vice president of research, adding that they sympathize with people's fears and concerns, but "what we do know is a little bit, and what we don't know is a lot" about breast cancer and the environment.

Yet Fox tells viewers in an ominous voice that "In Texas, as throughout the United States, cancer rates fell — except in one place— in the Barnett Shale."…

It’s one thing to interpret facts differently.  It’s another thing to simply make up the facts you want.

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