Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Nickel and Dimed to Death

"Now the two Washington candidates in the race have been attacking me lately because I don't support their idea of a gas tax holiday," Obama said.

He argued that suspending the gas tax collections would undercut highway construction, costing North Carolina up to 7,000 jobs, while saving consumers little.

"We're arguing over a gimmick that would save you half a tank of gas over the course of the entire summer so that everyone in Washington can pat themselves on the back and say they did something," Obama said.

Hold on, hold on, I actually agree with Obama that cutting the gas tax is a bad idea. But not because of the bloated highway spending budget. Rather I think it is a bad idea because it undercuts the market. (Diesel and Fuel tax by state - click for larger view)

Markets work, "Businessweek reports that Americans appear to be burning less gasoline as a result of driving less." If you cut the tax you will encourage greater use thus forcing higher prices for a longer period of time.

If you really want to give the economy a boost then drop corporate taxes, how about cutting ALL state and federal taxes on diesel fuel only -- giving a break in the cost of all goods. The federal tax on diesel fuel is about 30% higher then it is on gasoline (24.4 cents vs 18.4 cents)


Stop the Pain -- New Orleans Needs Business

WANT TO HELP NEW ORLEANS? Support free trade!

Is there any city for which congressional Democrats claim more concern than New Orleans? So why are they denying the Katrina-ravaged city a major opportunity for recovery by shutting out Colombian free trade? . . . The mayor of the hurricane-hit city made an impassioned plea to Congress to pass the Colombia free trade agreement for New Orleans' sake. He knows how badly his city needs every break it can get, three years after the biggest disaster to ever hit a U.S. metropolitan area. . . .

"New Orleans is becoming an even greater international city in the wake of Hurricane Katrina," Nagin wrote to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi last November, "and we are making every effort to capitalize on trade liberalization that will flow from these FTAs (free trade agreements). Our port system is ideally situated to take advantage of the Latin American FTAs."

Congress is unmoved because free trade produces less graft than massive aid projects. But it's funny that this hasn't gotten much attention from the press.



Ding, ding ding, Obama Wins as King of Spending

The Democratic presidential candidates have some big plans -- with big price tags attached. By our calculations, using figures supplied by the campaigns, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.) has proposed new spending and tax breaks that would amount to almost $265 billion a year when fully implemented, while the initiatives proposed by Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.) total nearly $333 billion.



Enough With The Number Two Jokes

The Nose On Your Face give us a hilarious translation of Zawahiri, al-Qaeda's number two.


Never Cooperate, Never Surrender!

The most hilarious point came when Obama tried to claim credit for bipartisanship on the John Roberts confirmation vote — not because he supported Roberts. He voted against Roberts. However, Obama wanted credit for defending the few Democrats who did support Roberts on Daily Kos, and taking the venom of Kos’ readership for his defense.

So bipartisanship is defending your own party members! Actually I have noticed that about the left, the only acceptable cooperation is agreeing with them, it is never the other way around. Obama confirms he is a member of the far left every day -- no wonder some people have a pathological disdain for Fox News, or even the DLC which is moderate in comparison.
American Thinker Blog -- Obama's Weird Idea of 'Bi-partisanship'

PR Gains In Muslim Nations

Would progress in public opinion against al-Qaeda in Muslim nations constitute important news? One might think so, considering the lengthy and difficult war we fight against the radical Islamist terrorists of the AQ network, especially in recruitment. The Washington Post took four days to report this progress, however, and stuck it on page A13, where Walter Pincus briefs us on some real progress

Hot Air -- US making PR gains in Muslim world — but apparently not in US media

Americans Really Are Smart

It always seems like a no-brainer to the Democrats: we'll promise to take some money from the "rich" and give it to those most likely to vote for us; how could it go wrong? But those pesky voters--what's the matter with Kansas?--don't think it's quite so simple.

Rasmussen reports that by 65% to 16%, likely voters oppose the Democrats' scheme to increase capital gains taxes. That's partly because lots of people pay capital gains, and partly because many voters have figured out that the Dems may come first for the "rich," but they'll be coming for them, too, before long: 60% say that a candidate who promises to hike taxes on capital gains will raise other taxes, as well. And a considerable number of voters have a better grasp of economics than Democratic politicians; 52% say that increasing capital gains would hurt the economy.

So the Democrats may soon be asking, not just what's wrong with Kansas, but what's wrong with America? Not that that would be much of a departure

Powerline -- Soak The Rich

Scary Close

WASHINGTON - CIA Director Michael Hayden said Monday that the alleged Syrian nuclear reactor destroyed by an Israeli airstrike in September would have produced enough plutonium for one or two bombs within a year of becoming operational.

U.S. intelligence and administration officials publicly disclosed last week their assessment that Syria was building a covert nuclear reactor with North Korean assistance. They said it was modeled on the shuttered North Korean reactor at Yongbyon, which produced a small amount of plutonium. The Syrian site, they said, was within weeks or months of being operational.

“In the course of a year after they got full up they would have produced enough plutonium for one or two weapons,” Hayden told reporters after a speech at Georgetown University.

LGF -- Syria Was Way Too Close To Nukes

Supremes Uphold Voter ID Law

The Supreme Court ruled yesterday that states may require voters to present photo identification before casting ballots, opening the way for wider adoption of a measure that Republicans say combats fraud and Democrats say discourages voting among the elderly and the poor.
(T)he usually liberal Justice John Paul Stevens wrote the main opinion and said the state law is a reasonable reaction to the threat of voter fraud.

"The application of the statute to the vast majority of Indiana voters is amply justified by the valid interest in protecting the integrity and reliability of the electoral process," he wrote. His opinion was joined by Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., who is normally on the right, and Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, who is often considered a swing vote.

This is one of those things you assume happens anyway, it seems like common sense.
Washington Post

Update: Wizbang Blog says it is a win for, "people who believe in the rule of law. Federalism/states' rights advocates. Republicans," and a, "colossal defeat for Democrats.

UN Means Unaccountable!

I'D BE SHOCKED, but by now this really isn't shocking:

The UN has covered up claims that its troops in Democratic Republic of Congo gave arms to militias and smuggled gold and ivory, the BBC has learned. . . . These are not the only allegations to have been brought against peacekeepers in DR Congo.

In December 2006, former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan said Moroccan troops had been involved in widespread sexual abuse.

"There have been crimes such as rape, paedophilia and human trafficking," he said, shortly before leaving office.

But since there's no anti-American angle, it won't be much of a story.



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