Happy Anniversary, Stimulus + More – Daily Digest

Posted on Mon 02/17/2014 by

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The Patriot Post ~

THE FOUNDATION

“We are either a United people, or we are not. If the former, let us, in all matters of general concern act as a nation, which have national objects to promote, and a national character to support. If we are not, let us no longer act a farce by pretending to it.” –George Washington, letter to James Madison, 1785

TOP 5 RIGHT HOOKS

Happy Anniversary, Stimulus

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, a.k.a. the “stimulus,” turns five today. Barack Obama told us that blowing $830 billion would save the economy, keep unemployment below 8%, prevent the oceans from rising and result in general peace and harmony. Of course, unemployment stubbornly remained above 8% for four years – and that only because so many millions of Americans left the workforce. The “stimulus” drove annual deficits over $1 trillion for four straight years, while setting a new, higher floor for federal spending. Returning to pre-stimulus spending levels is now a draconian “cut.” Finally, the “stimulus” has been a drag on the economy, which has averaged growth of just 2.4% compared to more than 4% under Ronald Reagan. This anniversary is hardly worth celebrating.

Thanks for ‘Monumental Achievement’

Barack Obama had encouraging words for the House Democratic caucus regarding ObamaCare, telling them, “I just want to say thank you for all of you hanging in there tough on an issue that I think 10 years from now, five years from now, we’re going to look back and say this was a monumental achievement that could not have happened had it not been for this caucus.” We’re thinking “monumental achievement” might be better described as “fundamentally transforming” our nation. It’s amusing to hear his thanks when Democrats are either afraid to run on ObamaCare or are actively campaigning against it, all while the president himself is delaying provisions to limit political damage. Hardly profiles in courage.

Biden’s Optimism

Joe Biden sure does have a way of putting things. He told fellow Democrats Friday that they should be optimistic about the future of our nation but then followed up with these observations: “It always surprises me when we don’t have the degree of optimism that we should about the state of the nation,” Biden said. “And in spite of who’s president, in spite of who’s in the Congress, the American people are so much stronger, so much more resilient, so much more capable, that even the ridiculous policies of our friends on the Right cannot keep them from moving forward.” Biden mistakes “leftward” for “forward,” but we too would like to be optimistic “in spite of who’s president.”

‘Zero Tolerance’ Strikes Again

So-called “zero tolerance” policies are all the rage in our nation’s public schools, as educators try to come up with some way to deal with cultural degradation that they themselves play a large part in creating. The policy usually ends up making administrators look stupid, however, as was the case when a Chicago sixth-grader was recently interrogated and suspended for voluntarily turning in to security guards a toy gun he accidentally still had in his jacket pocket. While Barack Obama’s city suffers a perpetual blood bath from real (and, we might add, often illegal) guns in the hands of gangbangers, the school has ensured that at least one “dangerous criminal” is off the streets.

Hollywood Double Standards

One of the great leftist causes of the last few decades has been the minimum wage. We’re told that the only way for the economy to take off is for businesses to be forced to pay more for labor. Yet in at least one case, it’s a “do what I say, not what I do” proposition. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Hollywood pays at or below the minimum wage more than twice as often as the national workforce in general, and the median wage for hourly workers in Hollywood is $2.74 per hour less than the national average. Hypocrisy, thy name is Hollywood.

For more, visit Right Hooks.

Cartoonist Gary Varvel: Democrats, Obamacare and tattoo removal

RIGHT ANALYSIS

Washington’s Birthday

PP_GeorgeWashington_2011-02-21-perspectiveIn some circles, today is observed as “Presidents’ Day,” jointly recognizing Presidents George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, but it is still officially recognized as the anniversary of “Washington’s Birthday” – and that is how we mark the date in our shop. (Washington’s actual birthday is Feb. 22.)

Matthew Spalding, a Heritage Foundation scholar, notes the history: “Although it was celebrated as early as 1778, and by the early 19th Century was second only to the Fourth of July as a patriotic holiday, Congress did not officially recognize Washington’s Birthday as a national holiday until 1870. The Monday Holiday Law in 1968 – applied to executive branch departments and agencies by Richard Nixon’s Executive Order 11582 in 1971 – moved the holiday from February 22 to the third Monday in February. Section 6103 of Title 5, United States Code, currently designates that legal federal holiday as ‘Washington’s Birthday.’ Contrary to popular opinion, no action by Congress or order by any President has changed ‘Washington’s Birthday’ to ‘Presidents’ Day.‘”

Furthermore, to call the day “Presidents’ Day” not only diminishes George Washington but elevates presidents like Barack Obama. Whereas Washington sought to keep his oath to “support and defend” the Constitution, Obama undermines it at every turn. His unilateral alterations to ObamaCare, for example, are purely politically motivated and violate our constitutional order. Then again, we still hold that ObamaCare itself is unconstitutional.

So with that in mind, and in honor of and with due respect for our first and greatest president and arguably our nation’s most outstanding Patriot, we include two quotes from George Washington that best embody his dedication to liberty and God. The first from his First Inaugural Address, April 30, 1789, and the second from his Farewell Address, September 19, 1796.

“The preservation of the sacred fire of liberty, and the destiny of the republican model of government, are justly considered as deeply, perhaps as finally, staked on the experiment entrusted to the hands of the American People.”

“Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, Religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of Patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great Pillars of human happiness – these firmest props of the duties of Men and citizens.”

These quotes aptly sum up The Patriot Post’s mission and purpose.

Volkswagen Rejects UAW

PP_UAWTheRestOfDetroit_2014-02-17-69ac0937The United Auto Workers effort to unionize the Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga is viewed as a bellwether for the UAW’s future in the South. Most Southern states are “right-to-work states” where workers cannot be forced to join a union. Thus, unions don’t have the grip on manufacturing that they do in the North and Midwest. Fortunately, Chattanooga Volkswagen workers rejected the union on a 712-626 secret ballot vote.

Make no mistake – this was a huge and welcome defeat for the UAW. The union pushed hard because it has shriveled to roughly a quarter of its once-mighty membership, and it wants to expand into the South where many automakers have set up non-union factories. Additionally, the defeat came as even Volkswagen management didn’t exactly oppose unionization because of the influence on its board of the powerful German steelworkers’ union, IG Metall. Plant management reportedly allowed the union access to the assembly floor to lobby workers while denying the same privilege to opponents.

As The Wall Street Journal wrote, “[I]t’s nothing short of remarkable that the union couldn’t make the sale. The failure reflects how well the plant’s workers are doing without a union, to the tune of $27 an hour including benefits. The defeat also speaks to the harm the UAW has done to itself by driving GM and Chrysler to bankruptcy and pushing companies like Caterpillar to move new production from union plants.” The UAW may blame politicians like Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) and other “outside groups” for the defeat, but many of VW’s workers pointed to the UAW’s history over the last 30 years as more than enough reason to keep it out.

Ever eager to inject himself into the story, Barack Obama used his bully pulpit to criticize the vote, accusing union opponents of being “more concerned about German shareholders than American workers.” Evidently, at least some of those American workers disagree. The bottom line is that the unions including the UAW are largely responsible for the bankrupt wasteland of Detroit. Once proudly known as the Motor City, the whole city is now up on blocks. We’re thankful Chattanooga didn’t go down that road.

For more, visit Right Analysis.

TOP 5 RIGHT OPINION COLUMNS

For more, visit Right Opinion.

OPINION IN BRIEF

Columnist Arnold Ahlert: “One suspects the Founding Fathers never anticipated the odious combination of rank opportunism and cynicism such a willing relinquishment indicates. But those attributes are the essence of today’s power-above-all-else Democrat party. … Moreover, the willingness of major media outlets to abandon their fundamental role as a government watchdog facilitates that lawlessness. … Yet as the adage ‘all roads lead to Rome’ reminds us, the GOP must take a good deal of the blame here as well. … If the president is breaking the law, isn’t it critically important to make the case to the public and let Democrats and the media defend such lawlessness? That’s what people genuinely interested in the rule of law would do. … [I]f politics are more important to Republicans than the rule of law, what makes them any different than Democrats?”

Columnist John C. Goodman: “Take a low-wage worker earning, say, $10 an hour and working 30 hours a week. This worker’s annual income is a little more than $15,000 a year. But the average cost of employer-provided coverage in the United States is more than that. That’s right. Health insurance for a family costs more than this worker’s entire annual income! … Economics teaches that fringe benefits (like health insurance) are not gifts from employers. They are substitutes for money wages. And the sum total of a worker’s compensation tends to equal the value of what the worker produces. Employees don’t suddenly become more productive just because government mandates a benefit that doubles the worker’s compensation. Something has to give. For millions of employees, what may give is their job. At least a full-time job.”

The Gipper: “We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.”

Burt Prelutsky: “Frankly, when I listen to something as long and boring as a State of the Union Address, I begin to understand the attraction of being President. … Obama has those chimps so well trained that even when he told them he was going to nullify Congress and the Constitution by legislating through executive fiat, he had them cheering. It would have been like French royals on their way to the guillotine shouting, ‘Long live Robespierre!’ It was as if Obama were refuting those who claim we’re on our way to being a banana republic by pointing out that we don’t have any bananas.”

Fred Thompson: “Obama was overheard joking to the visiting French president, ‘that’s the good thing about being President; I can do whatever I want.’ Except, apparently, recognize a hot mic.”

Semper Vigilo, Fortis, Paratus et Fidelis!
Nate Jackson for The Patriot Post Editorial Team

Join us in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform – Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen – standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families.

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