Friday, May 23, 2008

Pigs at the Trough

How true. I lifted this from Vulcan's Hammer.

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Thursday, May 22, 2008

How They Voted on The Farm Bill

After a wink and a nod from the President, letting Republicans know it was OK to vote for the Farm Bill, it passed by a veto- proof margin in both houses of Congress. President Bush who was reluctant to veto any spending bill passed by a Republican Congress, apparently feels he needs to go though the motions of vetoing at least some excessive spending bill passed by a Democratic Congress. However, it is all a game and the President did not intend for his veto to be sustained. Apparently, he thinks we are so stupid, we will not see how the game is really played.

The farm bill was an absolutely terrible bill. It increased spending by 44% above last year’s level. It contains millions in non-farm pork spending, it subsidizes multimillionaire farmers, it increases food prices to the consumer, it makes corn syrup so cheap that it is added to products that don’t need corn syrup, it undermines American leadership on trade and puts farmers in undeveloped countries at a competitive disadvantage which keeps poor countries from developing a modern agricultural sector.

I have below a list of how each Senator voted. I have also listed the vote of the Tennessee Congressmen. To see how congressmen in your state voted, click here.

I did not expect better from the Democrats but I am deeply disappointed in a good many Republicans. You will note that some prominent Republicans, many who will brag about their conservative credentials and blast their opponents as "liberal", voted for this bill. I have highlighted a few of their names. While I am not going to turn against someone over one single vote, anyone who voted for this bill should not be taken very seriously if they rail against wasteful government spending.

In looking at the list below, I am very disappointed in my own two Senators, Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker. I have admired and respected both of these men. I have thought they were rational, moderate, responsible, fiscally conservative public servants. I have voted for them and made modest contributions to their campaigns. They disappoint me.

Pleased to see voting against the bill in defiance of his own party is my own representative, Congressman Jim Cooper. Representative Cooper is a Democrat. If the next time we have a senatorial election in Tennessee, Democrat Jim Cooper should challenge either of our Republican senators, I might just vote for Cooper. This disgruntled Republican might just become a conservative Democrat.

How the Senate Voted:


Aye Sessions, Jefferson[R]
Aye Shelby, Richard [R]
Aye Murkowski, Lisa [R]
Aye Stevens, Ted [R]
Nay Kyl, Jon [R]
No Vote McCain, John [R]
Aye Lincoln, Blanche [D]
Aye Pryor, Mark [D]
Aye Feinstein, Dianne [D]
No Vote Boxer, Barbara [D]
Aye Allard, Wayne [R]
Aye Salazar, Ken [D]
Aye Lieberman, Joseph [I]
No Vote Dodd, Christopher [D]
Aye Carper, Thomas [D]
No Vote Biden, Joseph [D]
Aye Martinez, Mel [R]
No Vote Nelson, Bill [D]
Aye Chambliss, C. [R]
Aye Isakson, John [R]
Aye Akaka, Daniel [D]
Aye Inouye, Daniel [D]
Aye Craig, Larry [R]
Aye Crapo, Michael [R]
Aye Durbin, Richard [D]
No Vote Obama, Barack [D]
Aye Bayh, B. [D]
Nay Lugar, Richard [R]
Aye Grassley, Charles [R]
Aye Harkin, Thomas [D]
Aye Brownback, Samuel [R]
Aye Roberts, Pat [R]
Aye Bunning, Jim [R]
Aye McConnell, Mitch [R]
Aye Landrieu, Mary [D]
Aye Vitter, David [R]
Aye Snowe, Olympia [R]
Nay Collins, Susan [R]
Aye Cardin, Benjamin [D]
Aye Mikulski, Barbara [D]
Aye Kennedy, Edward [D]
Aye Kerry, John [D]
Aye Levin, Carl [D]
Aye Stabenow, Debbie Ann [D]
Aye Coleman, Norm [R]
Aye Klobuchar, Amy [D]
Aye Cochran, Thad [R]
Aye Lott, Trent [R]
Aye Bond, Christopher [R]
Aye McCaskill, Claire [D]
Aye Baucus, Max [D]
Aye Tester, Jon [D]
Aye Nelson, Ben [D]
Nay Hagel, Charles [R]
Aye Reid, Harry [D]
Nay Ensign, John [R]

New Hampshire
Nay Gregg, Judd [R]
Nay Sununu, John [R]
New Jersey
Aye Menendez, Robert [D]
Nay Lautenberg, Frank [D]
New Mexico
Aye Bingaman, Jeff [D]
Aye Domenici, Pete [R]
New York
Aye Schumer, Charles [D]
No Vote Clinton, Hillary [D]
North Carolina
Aye Dole, Elizabeth [R]
Nay Burr, Richard [R]
North Dakota
Aye Conrad, Kent [D]
Aye Dorgan, Byron [D]
Aye Brown, Sherrod [D]
Nay Voinovich, George [R]
Aye Coburn, Thomas [R]
Aye Inhofe, James [R]
Aye Smith, Gordon [R]
Aye Wyden, Ron [D]
Aye Casey, Robert [D]
Aye Specter, Arlen [R]
Rhode Island
Nay Reed, John [D]
Nay Whitehouse, Sheldon [D]
South Carolina
Aye Graham, Lindsey [R]
Nay DeMint, Jim [R]
South Dakota
Aye Johnson, Tim [D]
Aye Thune, John [R]
Aye Alexander, Lamar [R]
Aye Corker, Bob [R]
Aye Cornyn, John [R]
Aye Hutchison, Kay [R]
Aye Hatch, Orrin [R]
Nay Bennett, Robert [R]
Aye Leahy, Patrick [D]
Aye Sanders, Bernard [I]
Aye Warner, John [R]
Aye Webb, Jim [D]
Aye Cantwell, Maria [D]
Aye Murray, Patty [D]
West Virginia
Aye Byrd, Robert [D]
Aye Rockefeller, John [D]
Aye Feingold, Russell [D]
Aye Kohl, Herbert [D]
Aye Barrasso, John [R]
Aye Enzi, Michael [R

How Tennessee’s Representatives Voted.
Aye TN-1
Davis, David [R]
Nay TN-2 Duncan, John [R]
Nay TN-3 Wamp, Zach [R]
Aye TN-4 Davis, Lincoln [D]
Nay TN-5 Cooper, Jim [D]
Aye TN-6 Gordon, Barton [D]
Nay TN-7 Blackburn, Marsha [R]
Aye TN-8 Tanner, John [D]
Aye TN-9 Cohen, Steve [D

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

All Republican leaders must resign

by Richard Viguerie

Republicans are doomed to wander in the political wilderness until this generation of weak-kneed, no-vision, inarticulate, afraid-of-the-liberal-media politicians are replaced mostly with principled conservatives in the mold of Bill Buckley, Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan.

The result is that the party’s “brand” has become a negative, to an extent greater than in the Watergate era, perhaps worse than in the days of Herbert Hoover. The number of new Republican voters is flat while Democratic voter registration is skyrocketing. Contributions to GOP candidates and Republican parties are way off, while donations to Democrats are setting records.

In primaries, votes for Republican candidates at all levels are running far behind the Democrats. And in recent special elections, the party lost longheld congressional seats in Illinois, in Louisiana, and, yesterday, in Mississippi – all in districts carried overwhelmingly by President Bush. A single election can be a fluke, but when Republicans lose three seemingly safe seats in a row, disaster is looming.

The hard work of the last 50 years by millions of conservative campaign workers, donors, candidates, writers, intellectuals, and activists has been trashed. The conservative movement has been set back 10-20 years – possibly even permanently – by politicians consumed by power, including but certainly not limited to Denny Hastert, Tom DeLay, John Boehner, Roy Blunt, Mitch McConnell, Trent Lott, George W. Bush, Karl Rove, party chairman Mike Duncan, and their friends. Some deserve more of the blame than others, but they are all part of a party Establishment that has brought the party down.

For things to change, for conservatives to be justified in giving our contributions, our volunteer efforts, our energy, and votes to the GOP, the party must clean house. The party leadership should resign immediately. We must replace the Big Government/Big Business/Establishment Republicans with principled conservatives, most of them young. By “principled conservatives,” I mean leaders who will stand up to the liberals and fight for freedom and traditional values. Republicans are doomed to wander in the political wilderness until this generation of weak-kneed, no-vision, inarticulate, afraid-of-the-liberal-media politicians are replaced mostly with principled conservations in the mold of Bill Buckley, Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan.

Voters almost always reject a pale imitation in favor of the real thing. The Democrats have firm principled beliefs. What motivates most Republican leaders? Nothing except a craving for power. What do Republicans offer voters? Nothing except “Elect us because we’re not Democrats.”

To Republican leaders, I say: You turned against the principles you once espoused – conservative principles – and, in turn, conservatives and the American people have turned against you. Things will not get better until you accept responsibility, and resign. You have stayed too long. For the future of the Republican Party, for America and the cause of freedom: Go!

I most certainly agree. The complicity and lack of leadership on the Farm bill was the most recent and most glaring example of what is wrong with the Republican party. The Republican Party is the Democrat Lite party. Republicans have proven they can pander and spend with the best of Democrats.

Richard Viguerie, for those who may not know him, has been a powerhouse in the Republican Party since the days of Goldwater. He has been called the "funding father" of the modern conservative movement. He is the man behind the mail order fund raising effort of most conservative causes for the last fifty years. He sounds like a disgruntled Republican.

I am posting a link to his web site on my blogroll. Visit Conservative hq to learn more of the views of this principled conservative.

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How Black is Obama? Let the Hillary campaign show you.

Isn't the Hillary-Obama contest fun? I don't know the truth of this matter obviously, but it is alleged by the leftist kooks at Daily Kos that the Hillary campaign has doctored pictures of Obama to show him with a wider nose and darker complexion than he really has. Would Hillary really stoop that low to win the vote of "hard working white Americans?" Follow this link to see how they did it and read all about the controversy.

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Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Obama Blames Fox News For Losing White Voters

Obama, maybe there are other reasons you lost the white vote in some recent primaries. Maybe your comment about frustrated people clinging to guns and religion offended some religious gun owners. Maybe your wife's comment about being proud of America for the first time in her life had something to do with turning off patriotic middle Americans who love their country. Maybe that picture that shows you as the lone candidate on the stage who does not have his hand over his heart during the playing of the National Anthem made some middle Americans think that you do not share their values. Despite your eventual disavowal of Reverend Wright, do you think that perhaps your former pastor, who referred to America as the U.S.K.K.K.A. and said AIDS was a government created illness designed to kill Black Americans and who said "God damn America" could have turned some people off? After all, prior to disavowing him, you did call him your spiritual advisor and you did sit in the pews of his church for 20 years and contributed over $27,000 to that church.

Maybe some white Americans would simply prefer to vote for a white American just as some Blacks prefer to vote for a Black American and some females would prefer to vote for a female. Maybe they are just not that into you. You have the Blacks and the college educated elites but maybe the white middle class are just not ready to vote for a Black man who is also rated as the most liberal person in the U. S. Senate. Maybe it is because you don't have as much testosterone as Hillary Clinton. You can't put back shots of liquor and mingle in the pool hall as good as Hillary. You don't love guns and you are not a hunter. You are just not the "good ole boy" that Hillary is. Hillary is just better at playing the redneck. Maybe Hillary just knows how to pander better than you do.

When Bill Clinton got caught in a scandal, Hillary blamed his problems on a "vast right-wing conspiracy". Back when there were a lot fewer media outlets and less diversity in News reporting, Republicans used to blame a lot of their losses on the "liberal media." Fox is only one network. You still have the fawning MSNBC, NBC, CBS, ABC, and CNN plus the quasi-news comedy shows that love you. Surely you can do better than blame your recent losses on little old Fox news network.

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Monday, May 19, 2008

The GOP at the Trough

By Robert D. Novak Monday, May 19, 2008; The Washington Post

Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, 38 and having served less than five terms, did not leap over a dozen of his seniors to become the ranking Republican on the House Budget Committee by bashing GOP leaders. But an angry Ryan delivered unscripted remarks on the House floor last Wednesday as the farm bill neared passage: "This bill is an absence of leadership. This bill shows we are not leading." (link)

Commentary: The story of Republican complicity and lack of leadership on the farm bill is reason for any conservative to be disgruntled and disgusted. The Farm bill is a bad bill. It raises spending by 44% above last year’s level. It contains non-farm pork spending, it subsidizing multimillionaire farmers, it increases food prices to the consumer, it undermines American leadership on trade, and puts farmers in undeveloped countries at a competitive disadvantage and keeps poor countries poor.

The Republican leadership has shown no leadership on this bill. According to Novak, President Bush has promised to veto the bill but let it be known that it would be OK if Republicans “voted their districts.” Apparently Republicans are not going to be pushed hard to sustain the veto.

In the Senate, Republican leader Mitch McConnell is not only supporting the bill but got a provision added to the bill giving special tax breaks to horse farms in his state of Kentucky. In the House, Minority Whip Roy Blunt voted for the bill. In the House, Republicans voted for the bill 100 to 91 and in the Senate, 35 Republicans voted for it and only 13 opposed it.

When Republicans vote like Democrats, why should one care if Republicans lose elections? Maybe it is time for Republicans to take a major beating, do some major soul searching, regroup, and rediscover why they are Republicans.

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Sunday, May 18, 2008

On Climate, Symbols Can Overshadow Substance

Lights-Out Event More Showy Than Practical
By Shankar Vedantam Washington Post Staff Writer Saturday, May 17, 2008

In March of last year, the World Wildlife Fund in Australia teamed up with Leo Burnett, the multinational advertising agency that created the Marlboro Man, to come up with a new environmental campaign called Earth Hour. The idea was to get 2 million residents in Sydney to turn off all the lights in their homes for one hour. The campaign generated wide publicity, but the energy saved was small -- the equivalent of taking about five cars off the city's roads for a year.

Tension between substance and symbolism runs through the modern environmental movement. After years of conflict with climate-change deniers and a White House that has resisted mandatory efforts to address global warming, the movement has become a crusade that is partly moral statement and partly fashion statement. Earth Hour, Earth Day and the Miss Earth beauty pageant -- "saving the planet, one pageant at a time" -- generate lots of publicity, but they also tend to prompt people and companies to choose what looks good over what works. (link)

Comment: I could not have said it better. Modern environmentalism is about making a statement, not about making a difference. Consciousness has already been raised. We don’t need another Al Gore Earth Aid concert. We don’t need another self-indulgent celebrity showing us how much they care by flying their “green” car around the world so they can be seen driving “green.” We don’t need another company selling phony carbon offsets. Enough already of the “green washing.” Feel-good environmentalism and symbolism over substance brought us the ethanol mistake and the Energy Independence and Security Act 0f 2007. When are environmentalists going to get serious about supporting policies that really work instead of silly symbolic gestures?

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