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Sep 9

Obama Administration Arrogantly Treats Americans As Fools

The following scathing editorial by Thomas Sowell examines Obama’s arrogance and unalloyed contempt for the American voter particularly as regards his legislation and approach to ramming them into law.

He doesn’t mince words when he states that:

Not since the Norman conquerors of England published their laws in French, for an English-speaking nation, centuries ago, has there been such contempt for the people's right to know what laws were being imposed on them.

Administration Is Taking All Of Us For Fools
Thomas Sowell  08/17/2010

'We the people" are the central concern of the Constitution, as well as its opening words, since it is a Constitution for a self-governing nation. But "we the people" are treated as an obstacle to circumvent by the current administration.

One way of circumventing the people is to rush legislation through Congress so fast that no one knows what is buried in it. Did you know that the so-called health care reform bill contained a provision creating a tax on people who buy and sell gold coins?

You might debate whether that tax is a good or a bad idea. But the whole point of burying it in legislation about medical insurance is to make sure "we the people" don't even know about it, much less have a chance to debate it, before it becomes law.

Did you know that the financial reform bill that's been similarly rushed through Congress, too fast for anyone to read, has a provision about "inclusion" of women and minorities? Pretty words like "inclusion" mean ugly realities like quotas. But that too isn't something "we the people" are to be allowed to debate, because it too was sneaked through.

Not since the Norman conquerors of England published their laws in French, for an English-speaking nation, centuries ago, has there been such contempt for the people's right to know what laws were being imposed on them.

Yet another ploy is to pass laws worded in vague generalities, leaving it up to the federal bureaucracies to issue specific regulations based on those laws. "We the people" can't vote on bureaucrats. And, since it takes time for all the bureaucratic rules to be formulated and then put into practice, we won't know what either the rules or their effects are prior to this fall's elections when we vote for (or against) those who passed these clever laws.

The biggest circumvention of "we the people" was of course the so-called "health care reform" bill. This bill was passed with the proviso that it would not really take effect until after the 2012 presidential elections. Between now and then, the Obama administration can tell us in glowing words how wonderful this bill is, what good things it will do for us, and how it has rescued us from the evil insurance companies, among its many other glories.

But we won't really know what the actual effects of this bill are until after the next presidential elections — which is to say, after it is too late. Quite simply, we are being played for fools.

Much has been made of the fact that families making less than $250,000 a year will not see their taxes raised. Of course they won't see it, because what they see could affect how they vote. But when huge tax increases are put on electric utility companies, the people will see electricity bills go up. When huge taxes are put on other businesses as well, they will see the prices of the things those businesses sell go up.

If you are not in that "rich" category, you will not see your own taxes go up. But you will be paying someone else's higher taxes, unless of course you can do without electricity and other products of heavily taxed businesses. If you don't see this, so much the better for the administration politically.

This country has been changed in a more profound way by corrupting its fundamental values. The Obama administration has begun bribing people with the promise of getting their medical care and other benefits paid for by other people, so long as those other people can be called "the rich." Incidentally, most of those who are called "the rich" are nowhere close to being rich.

A couple making $125,000 a year each are not rich, even though together they reach that magic $250,000 income level. In most cases, they haven't been making $125,000 a year all their working lives. Far more often, they have reached this level after decades of working their way up from lower incomes — and now the government steps in to grab the reward they have earned over the years.

There was a time when most Americans would have resented the suggestion that they wanted someone else to pay their bills. But now, envy and resentment have been cultivated to the point where even people who contribute nothing to society feel that they have a right to a "fair share" of what others have produced.

The most dangerous corruption is a corruption of a nation's soul. That is what this administration is doing.

http://www.investors.com/NewsAndAnalysis/Article/544029/201008171837/Administration-Is-Taking-All-Of-Us-For-Fools.aspx

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Aug 23

Liberals Seek To Bypass The Constitution In Order to Enact Their Agendas

At the time of the writing of the US Constitution, there was nothing remotely like it at all. It was a radical departure from millennium of autocratic, tyrannical or monarchal rule. It was a framework for a government for the people, of the people and by the people.

Thus, the Founding Fathers sought to create a government that was to serve the best interests of the country as a whole and not that of an elite few.

Unfortunately, what we are witnessing today are myriad attempts to circumvent or ignore the Constitution in order to implement legislation that benefits or comports with the ideologies of certain “elites” – the Progressives. Thomas Sowell outlines this situation with incredible insight and cogency.

Constitution Is Big Barrier To Liberal Agenda
Thomas Sowell   08/16/2010

'We the people" are the familiar opening words of the Constitution of the United States — the framework for a self-governing people, free from the arbitrary edicts of rulers.

It was the blueprint for America, and the success of America made that blueprint something that other nations sought to follow.

At the time when it was written, however, the Constitution was a radical departure from the autocratic governments of the 18th century.

Since it was something so new and different, the reasons for the Constitution's provisions were spelled out in "The Federalist," a book written by three of the writers of the Constitution, as a sort of instruction guide to a new product.

The Constitution was not only a challenge to the despotic governments of its time, it has been a continuing challenge — to this day — to all those who think that ordinary people should be ruled by their betters, whether an elite of blood, or of books or of whatever else gives people a puffed-up sense of importance.

While the kings of old have faded into the mists of history, the principle of the divine rights of kings to impose whatever they wish on the masses lives on today in the rampaging presumptions of those who consider themselves anointed to impose their notions on others.

The Constitution of the United States is the biggest single obstacle to the carrying out of such rampaging presumptions, so it is not surprising that those with such presumptions have led the way in denigrating, undermining and evading the Constitution.

While various political leaders have, over the centuries, done things that violated either the spirit or the letter of the Constitution, few dared to openly say that the Constitution was wrong and that what they wanted was right.

Progressives' Role

It was the Progressives of a hundred years ago who began saying that the Constitution needed to be subordinated to whatever they chose to call "the needs of the times."

Nor were they content to say that the Constitution needed more Amendments, for that would have meant that the much disdained masses would have something to say about whether, or what kind, of Amendments were needed.

The agenda then, as now, has been for our betters to decide among themselves which Constitutional safeguards against arbitrary government power should be disregarded, in the name of meeting "the needs of the times" — as they choose to define those needs.

The first open attack on the Constitution by a President of the United States was made by our only president with a Ph.D., Woodrow Wilson.

Virtually all the arguments as to why judges should not take the Constitution as meaning what its words plainly say, but "interpret" it to mean whatever it ought to mean, in order to meet "the needs of the times," were made by Woodrow Wilson.

Wisdom Of 'Experts'

It is no coincidence that those who imagine themselves so much wiser and nobler than the rest of us should be in the forefront of those who seek to erode Constitutional restrictions on the arbitrary powers of government.

How can our betters impose their superior wisdom and virtue on us, when the Constitution gets in the way at every turn, with all its provisions to safeguard a system based on a self-governing people?

To get their way, the elites must erode or dismantle the Constitution, bit by bit, in one way or another. What that means is that they must dismantle America.

This has been going on piecemeal over the years, but now we have an administration in Washington that circumvents the Constitution wholesale, with its laws passed so fast that the public cannot know what is in them, its appointment of "czars" wielding greater power than Cabinet members, without having to be exposed to pubic scrutiny by going through the confirmation process prescribed by the Constitution for Cabinet members.

Now there is leaked news of plans to change the immigration laws by administrative fiat, rather than Congressional legislation, presumably because Congress might be unduly influenced by those pesky voters — with their Constitutional rights — who have shown clearly that they do not want amnesty and open borders, despite however much our betters do.

If the Obama administration gets away with this, and can add a few million illegals to the voting rolls in time for the 2012 elections, that can mean re-election, and with it a continuing and accelerating dismantling of America.

http://www.investors.com/NewsAndAnalysis/Article/543932/201008161854/Constitution-Is-Big-Barrier-To-Liberal-Agenda.aspx

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Aug 13

The Perniciousness of Quotas On All Aspects of Society

Liberals and demagogues steadfastly claim that under-representation of chosen minority groups in selected high profile, income or powerful positions or even the job de jour, can only be possible because of discrimination. There can be and is not any other rational or acceptable explanation so they claim. This is the ideology that Obama, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton and their ilk subscribe to and which has become entrenched in our government’s policies.

Unfortunately, this specious explanation results in unwarranted quotas and reverse discrimination and engenders reactive racism, cynicism and frustration. Those who would have been most qualified, deserving and productive and contributed far greater to the welfare of society as a whole have been denied the opportunity because of bean counting. Thus, in the end, we all pay a price for this unfounded, pernicious demagoguery.

Juvenile Jabs Don't Deserve Standing O's

Thomas Sowell 08/09/2010

A graduating senior at Hunter College High School in New York gave a speech that brought a standing ovation from his teachers and got his picture in the New York Times. I hope it doesn't go to his head, because what he said was so illogical that it was an indictment of the mush that is being taught at even our elite educational institutions.

Young Justin Hudson, described as "black and Hispanic," opened by saying how much he appreciated reaching his graduation day at this very select public high school. Then he said, "I don't deserve any of this. And neither do you."

The reason? He and his classmates were there because of "luck and circumstances."

Since Hunter College High School selects its applicants from the whole city on the basis of their test scores, "luck" seems a strange way to characterize why some students are admitted and many others are not. If you can't tell the difference between luck and performance, what has your education given you, except the rhetoric to conceal your confusion from others and perhaps from yourself?

Young Mr. Hudson's concern, apparently, is about what he referred to as the "demographics" of the school — 41% white and 47% Asian, with blacks, Hispanics and others obviously far behind.

"I refuse to accept" that "the distribution of intelligence in this city" varies by neighborhood, he said.

Native intelligence may indeed not vary by neighborhood but actual performance — whether in schools, on the job or elsewhere — involves far more than native intelligence. Wasted intelligence does nothing for an individual or society.

The reason a surgeon can operate on your heart, while someone of equal intelligence who is not a surgeon cannot, is because of what different people actually did with their intelligence. That has always varied, not only from individual to individual but from group to group — and not only in this country, but in countries around the world and across the centuries of human history.

One of the biggest fallacies of our time is the notion that, if all groups are not proportionally represented in institutions, professions or income levels, that shows something wrong with society. The very possibility that people make their own choices, and that those choices have consequences — for themselves and for others — is ignored. Society is the universal scapegoat.

If "luck" is involved, it is the luck to be born into families and communities whose values and choices turn out to be productive for themselves and for others who benefit from the skills they acquire. Observers who blame tests or other criteria for the demographic imbalances which are the rule — not the exception — around the world, are blaming whatever conveys differences for creating those differences.

They blame the messenger who brings bad news.

If test scores are not the same for people from different backgrounds, that is no proof that there is something wrong with the tests. Tests do not exist to show what your potential was when you entered the world but to measure what you have actually accomplished since then, as a guide to what you are likely to continue to do in the future. Tests convey a difference that tests did not create.

But the messenger gets blamed for the bad news.

Similarly, if prices are higher in high-crime neighborhoods, that is often blamed on those who charge those prices, rather than on those who create the higher costs of higher rates of shoplifting, robbery, vandalism and riots, which are passed on to those who shop in those neighborhoods.

The prices convey a reality that the prices did not create. If these prices represent simply "greed" for higher profits, then why do most profit-seeking businesses avoid high-crime neighborhoods like the plague?

It is painful that people with lower incomes often have to pay higher prices, even though most people are not criminals, even in a high-crime neighborhood. But misconstruing the reasons is not going to help anybody, except race hustlers and politicians.

One of the many disservices done to young people by our schools and colleges is giving them the puffed-up notion that they are in a position to pass sweeping judgments on a world that they have barely begun to experience. A standing ovation for childish remarks may produce "self-esteem" but promoting presumptuousness is unlikely to benefit either this student or society.

http://www.investors.com/NewsAndAnalysis/Article/543075/201008091843/Juvenile-Jabs-Dont-Deserve-Standing-Os.aspx

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Aug 3

Obama’s Combination of Elitism, Arrogance and Narcissism Is A Recipe For Disaster For America

The Obama Administration has demonstrated a lethal combination of two pernicious characteristics: arrogance and ignorance of history. Obama and his acolytes comport themselves as arrogant elitist – they think they know what is best or at least what they want to impose on America and will do it even employing a scorched earth policy. They show little regard for what the citizens of this country want – only what Obama wants for them.

Most all of his major policies and ideologies have been tried numerous times before (as noted in the editorial below) and have failed. But Obama’s arrogance and narcissism tell him that he will be the one to succeed so he continues to pursue destructive policies.

As the maxim goes: “those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it”. Unfortunately, it will be us Americans who will pay an awful price.

Rule By Elites Has Been Tried — And Failed
Thomas Sowell   07/26/2010

Many of the wonderful-sounding ideas that have been tried as government policies have failed disastrously. Because so few people bother to study history, often the same ideas and policies have been tried again, either in another country or in the same country at a later time — and with the same disastrous results.

One of the ideas that has proved to be almost impervious to evidence is the idea that wise and far-sighted people need to take control and plan economic and social policies so there will be a rational and just order, rather than chaos resulting from things being allowed to take their own course.

It sounds so logical and plausible that demanding hard evidence would seem almost like nit-picking.
In one form or another, this idea goes back at least as far as the French Revolution in the 18th century. As J.A. Schumpeter later wrote of that era, "general well-being ought to have been the consequence," but "instead we find misery, shame and, at the end of it all, a stream of blood."

The same could be said of the Bolshevik Revolution and other revolutions of the 20th century.

The idea that the wise and knowledgeable few need to take control of the less wise and less knowledgeable many has taken milder forms — and repeatedly with bad results as well.

One of the most easily documented examples has been economic central planning, which was tried in countries around the world at various times during the 20th century, among people of differing races and cultures, and under government ranging from democracies to dictatorships.

The people who ran central planning agencies usually had more advanced education than the population at large, and probably higher IQs as well.

The central planners also had far more statistics and other facts at their disposal than the average person had. Moreover, there were usually specialized experts such as economists and statisticians on the staffs of the central planners, and outside consultants were available when needed. Finally, the central planners had the power of government behind them, to enforce the plans they created.
It is hardly surprising that conservatives, such as Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in Britain and President Ronald Reagan in the United States, opposed this approach.

What is remarkable is that, after a few decades of experience with central planning in some countries, or a few generations in others, even communists and socialists began to repudiate this approach.

As they replaced central planning with more reliance on markets, their countries' economic growth rate almost invariably increased, often dramatically.

In the largest and most recent examples — China and India — people by the millions have risen above these countries' official poverty rates, after they freed their economies from many of their suffocating government controls.

China, where famines have repeatedly ravaged the country, now has a problem of obesity — not a good thing in itself, but a big improvement over famines.

This has implications far beyond economics. Think about it: How was it even possible that transferring decisions from elites with more education, intellect, data and power to ordinary people could lead consistently to demonstrably better results?

One implication is that no one is smart enough to carry out social engineering, whether in the economy or in other areas where the results may not always be so easily quantifiable. We learn not from our initial brilliance, but from trial and error adjustments to events as they unfold.

Science tells us that the human brain reaches its maximum potential in early adulthood. Why then are young adults so seldom capable of doing what people with more years of experience can do? Because experience trumps brilliance. Elites may have more brilliance, but those who make decisions for society as a whole cannot possibly have as much experience as the millions of people whose decisions they pre-empt.

The education and intellects of the elites may lead them to have more sweeping presumptions, but that just makes them more dangerous to the freedom, as well as the well-being, of the people as a whole.

http://www.investors.com/NewsAndAnalysis/Article/541635/201007261911/Rule-By-Elites-Has-Been-Tried-And-Failed.aspx

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Jul 24

Obama Has Turned The Clock Back On Race Relations

The following trenchant editorial by the pre-eminent philosopher/ columnist/ economist Thomas Sowell bluntly states his assessment of Obama’s racial stance: there is nothing post-racial about him. This should come as no surprise to those who have followed his positions and commentary on racial issues during his Presidency.

For those who have researched his past, you would have discovered a very racist and arrogant individual who feels comfortable associating with and reveres some of the most anti-White, intolerant, anti-American blacks who fervently subscribe to Black Nationalism philosophies. The names are quite familiar: Rev. Jeremiah Wright (20 years listening to incendiary speeches), Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, Van Jones – to name but a few.

Those Obama voters who were unaware of his past and his associations were most probably deceived by his dissembling rhetoric. They expected someone who would transcend race and relegate racial issues to the past. Instead what they got was someone who is among the most racially polarizing Presidents this country has ever had. Compounding the Obama problem is that his deceptions are not limited to racial issues - they are ubiquitous and myriad in all areas.

Sowell concisely sums up Obama’s influence on race by stating that:

There is not now, nor has there ever been, anything post-racial about Barack Obama, except for the people who voted for him in the mistaken belief that he shared their desire to be post-racial. When he leaves office, especially if it is after one term, he will leave this country more racially polarized than before.


Nothing Post-Racial About Barack Obama
Thomas Sowell   07/20/2010

Credit card fraud is a serious problem. But race card fraud is an even bigger problem.

Playing the race card takes many forms. Judge Charles Pickering, a federal judge in Mississippi who defended the civil rights of blacks for years and defied the Ku Klux Klan back when that was dangerous, was depicted as a racist when he was nominated for a federal appellate judgeship.

No one even mistakenly thought he was a racist. The point was simply to discredit him for political reasons — and it worked.
This year's target is the Tea Party. When leading Democrats, led by a smirking Nancy Pelosi, made their triumphant walk on Capitol Hill, celebrating their passage of a bill in defiance of public opinion, Tea Party members on the scene protested.

All this was captured on camera and the scene was played on television. What was not captured on any of the cameras and other recording devices on the scene was anybody using racist language, as has been charged by those playing the race card.

When you realize how many media people were there, and how many ordinary citizens carry around recording devices of one sort or another, it is remarkable — indeed, unbelievable — that racist remarks were made and yet were not captured by anybody.
The latest attack on the Tea Party movement, by Ben Jealous of the NAACP, has once again played the race card. Like the proverbial lawyer who knows his case is weak, he shouts louder.

This is not the first time that an organization with an honorable and historic mission has eventually degenerated into a tawdry racket. But that an organization like the NAACP, after years of fighting against genuine racism, should now be playing the game of race card fraud is especially painful to see.

Some critics of the Tea Party have seized upon banners carried at one of its rallies that compared Obama with Hitler and Stalin. Extreme? Yes. But there was nothing racist about it, since extreme comparisons have been made about politicians of every race, color, creed, nationality, ideology and sexual preference.

Some Obama supporters have long regarded any criticism of him as racism. But that they should have to resort to such a banner to bolster their case shows how desperate they are for any evidence.

Among people who voted for Barack Obama in 2008, those who are likely to be most disappointed are those who thought they were voting for a new post-racial era. There was absolutely nothing in Obama's past to lead to any such expectation, and much to suggest the exact opposite. But the man's rhetoric and demeanor during the election campaign enabled this and many other illusions to flourish.

Still, it was an honest mistake of the kind that decent people have often made when dealing with people whose agendas are not constrained by decency, but only by what they think they can get away with.

On race, as on other issues, different people have radically different views of Barack Obama, depending on whether they judge him by what he says or by what he does. As Obama's own books point out, he has for years cultivated a talent for saying things that people will find congenial.

You want bipartisanship and an end to bickering in Washington? He will say that he wants bipartisanship and an end to bickering in Washington. Then he will shut Republicans out of the decision-making process and respond to their suggestions by reminding them that he won the election. A famous writer — Ring Lardner, I believe — once wrote: "'Shut up,' he explained."

You want a government that is open instead of secretive? He will say that. He will promise to post proposed legislation on the Internet long enough for everyone to read it and know what is in it before there is a vote. In practice, however, he has rushed massive bills through Congress too fast for anybody — even the members of Congress — to know what was in those bills.

Racial issues are more of the same. You want a government where all citizens are treated alike, regardless of race or ethnicity? Obama will say that. Then he will advocate appointing judges with "empathy" for particular segments of the population, such as racial minorities. "Empathy" is just a pretty word for the ugly reality of bias.

Obama's first nomination of a Supreme Court justice was a classic example of someone with "empathy" for some racial groups, but not others. As a Circuit Court judge, Sonia Sotomayor voted to dismiss a case involving white firefighters who had been denied the promotions for which they qualified, because not enough blacks or Hispanics passed the same test that they did.

A fellow Hispanic judge protested the way the white firefighters' case was dismissed, rather than adjudicated. The Supreme Court not only took the case, but also ruled in favor of the firefighters.

Obama's injecting himself into a local police matter in Massachusetts, despite admitting he didn't know the facts, to say a white policeman was in the wrong in arresting a black professor who was a friend of Obama, was more of the same. So is Obama's Justice Department overlooking blatant voter intimidation by thugs who happen to be black.

There is not now, nor has there ever been, anything post-racial about Barack Obama, except for the people who voted for him in the mistaken belief that he shared their desire to be post-racial. When he leaves office, especially if it is after one term, he will leave this country more racially polarized than before.

Hopefully, he may also leave the voters wiser, though sadder, after they learn from painful experience that you can't judge politicians by their rhetoric, or ignore their past because of your hopes for the future. Voters may even wise up to race card fraud.

http://www.investors.com/NewsAndAnalysis/Article/540936/201007201820/Nothing-Post-Racial-About-Barack-Obama.aspx

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