November 7th, 2010
In an article about the impact of the midterm elections on legislative progress, CBS News included a photo that is drawing fire from right-of-center media like Newsbusters, calling it “racist.” The photo depicts the legislative divide with a photoshopped image that bisects the President’s face, with a darker skin tone on the left and a lighter one on the right, flanked by corresponding Congressional leaders.
While it’s hard to imagine that the photo, attributed to the Associated Press and CBS, escaped the notice of any number of editors, it is equally bemusing to contemplate where Newsbusters places its outrage. After the jump, exclusive reaction from CBS.
The obvious explanation for this photo, other than that it’s a tribute to Frank Gorshin and Star Trek, is that it is meant to illustrate the shift in the balance of power in Congress (with Democratic Senators to the President’s left, GOP House members to his right), and that the racial subtext was inadvertent. If so, the photo’s creators and subsequent editors suffer from a tone-deafness to rival Jon Stewart.
However, Newsbusters explains that the real outrage here is not the manipulation of the President’s skin tone, but this:
As one can see, the darker Obama is on the left with the Democrats, and the lighter Obama is on the right with the Republicans.
Are CBS and AP not so subtly implying the GOP are all white?
So, when they reference a “racist picture of Obama” in their headline, they mean it is racist against whites.
We reached out to CBS, and a CBSNews.com spokesman told us, “Our intention with the “ripped paper” overlay effect down the middle was to convey a divided Congress and nothing more.”
Misplaced outrage aside, Newsbusters’ interpretation certainly jibes with popular conceptions of the two parties, and seems to reinforce stereotypes about both sides. However unintentional the subtext, this is an elegant coincidence.
Lost in all of this is the fact that the photo also diminishes the tangerine hue of presumptive House Speaker John Boehner. Is CBS prejudiced against badly-tanned people?
While it is fair to point out the photo’s underpinnings, as many conservative blogs did, it is telling that, in their zeal to paint CBS in an unfavorable light, none of them bothered to contact the network for their side of the story.
November 7th, 2010
November 7th, 2010
By Barry Secrest
While we amply enjoy seeing Liberalism slinking back into its dank hiding place for a time, one must be aware that not even overwhelming elections will ever keep the infection that is Progressivism at bay for long. Despite Obama's mass repudiation by the People, and a victory borne primarily of those who either consider themselves of the Tea Party or as identifying with the Tea Party, there yet remains those of both Parties who deny this fact. While Obama and the Democrats weep and gnash their teeth at the outcome, it is our true and deeply held belief that you would think that they'd be saying Thank You!
The Union may yet persevere as a direct result of the asylum that is Congress having been retaken from the inmates. And yet the insanity of the Liberalist Sects continues to sow its seeds of sane contemptuousness in the largest active asylum of them all--that being the Mainstream Media. On this occasion of the election, and with regard to a victory under the quantum shift, we cannot help but point out a prediction that was made by some smart-alecky Conservative nearly one year ago...Revisiting A Glorious Cause: Rebuttal To Frank Rich's "The Grand Old Plot Against The Tea Party"
November 7th, 2010
House rule changes squander good will
January 7, 2009
The spirit of bipartisan cooperation didn't survive the first day of the 111th Congress as House Democrats pushed through a package of rule changes Tuesday that the furious Republican minority said trampled their traditional rights to affect legislation.
California Rep. David Dreier, ranking Republican on the House Rules Committee, called the procedural changes engineered by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat, an "act of pure cynicism," in stark contrast to the promises of President-elect Barack Obama to work with Republicans to pass major bills.
"So much for the Obama vision," said Mr. Dreier, who said the changes would create "the most closed Congress in history."
House Democrats said the changes were needed to end what they said was an "abuse" of the previous rules by the minority, to torpedo bills likely to pass.
The most contentious rule change places new restrictions on motions to "recommit" a bill for new amendments to the committee that approved it. In practice, that motion often meant a lengthy or even permanent delay in passing the measure. Motions to recommit would still be possible, but the new rules allow the full House to reconsider the bill almost instantaneously.
Democrats, who hold a 257-178 majority in the House, argue that Republicans overused the tactic in the previous Congress, offering unrelated but politically charged amendments to bills in an effort to embarrass Democrats and derail an immediate vote. The new rules would give the minority the right to a vote on sending the bill back to committee without instructions on policy changes, or to ask for those policy changes while the bill remains on the House floor.
Rep. Jim McGovern, Massachusetts Democrat and a member of the Rules Committee, called the change a "modernization" of the House rule. He said Republicans has used the recommit tactic 50 times in the two years since Democrats took control of the House in 2007, compared with 36 times when the Democrats were in the minority from 1995 to 2007.
He accused Republicans of playing "gotcha politics" with their recommit motions, calling it a "cynical way to do business."
But Rep. Roy Blunt, Missouri Republican and the party's whip in the previous Congress, said on the House floor that Republicans were "the victims of their own success," accusing Democrats of changing the rules because the minority had been able to slow or alter bills over the past two years.
Because of the special rules regarding budgetary legislation, Republicans argued that the new restrictions on motions to recommit will hobble their ability to challenge tax increases that are included in larger, "must-pass" bills.
Unlike in the Senate, where the threat of a filibuster gives the minority strong bargaining leverage, the minority party in the House has relatively few tools to challenge the majority's will. Mr. Dreier noted that the recommit motion had been in place for 100 years, and he rejected Democratic claims that the new rules were a minor tweak to an obscure parliamentary proceeding.
In Congress, he said, "process is substance."
Another rule change approved Tuesday rolled back one of the signature reforms of the "Contract With America" agenda embraced by House Republicans when they seized control of the chamber in 1994. Mrs. Pelosi's package repealed a rule limiting committee chairmen to three terms - six years - as head of a House committee.
Republicans argued that without the term limit, committee chairs could establish individual fiefdoms in their areas of jurisdiction.
Doing away with the three-term restriction "will entrench a handful of members of the House in positions of permanent power, with little regard for its impact on the American people," House Minority Leader John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican, said in a letter Monday to Mrs. Pelosi.
But House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer, Maryland Democrat, said the practical effect of the term limit was to make races for coveted chairmanships a test of fund-raising ability, not legislative skill.
A motion to recommit the rules changes, offered by Mr. Dreier, lost on a vote of 249-174. The House then agreed to the new rules by a vote of 242-181, with six Democrats siding with the Republican minority on the final vote.
November 7th, 2010
The Insight Spring
By Frank Houck
All solutions which I create have no impact on anything; that is to say when enacted they change nothing. These solutions simply remove the financial issue with current rules in a modified way. World debt has different tools, so the approach to resolve is also different.
I find this debt problem humorous. The solution is a mere thought which suggests that not one of the world's leaders has understanding of what they lead or understanding of their country's financial organization. Ironically, the entire world is as inept at picking leaders as we are.
At present, nearly every country is in financial crisis. Within this straight-forward fact lies the answer. It is not important that you understand this yet. The reality is that the world uses gold as a constant for value--an equal method of exchange. What you may not realize is that the value of gold is completely arbitrary. Not only that, but gold is worthless! I can prove it.
You and I are the last people on earth. You have all the gold in the world, and I have a dozen eggs. Do you think I would sell my eggs to you for your gold? Gold merely has societal value because people believe it does, and because people are willing to give you things for it.
It is paramount to know that the value of gold is completely arbitrary; and to understand that all countries, within their own culture, recognize its value at the same level. Additionally, it is the country that will decide the value, and nobody can change it. Imagine if the country established limestone as its currency. . .well, that's what it would be, and all the people would recognize limestone as a method of exchange. These people could try to purchase with gold, but the store owners wouldn't accept it--only limestone.
I am not suggesting a change from the gold standard. What I am suggesting is that the leaders of the world gather at the UN and agree to set the value of gold ten times its present value. As you have just learned, as long as the countries agree, it will be so. This decision instantly increases available currency in every country to ten times what it formerly had. Presto--the UN solves world debt issues with a mere thought. The problem is solved without riots, bankruptcy and world chaos.
The gold standard used to explain this concept is completely arbitrary. You can use any standard or non standard that you wish. Just replace the word gold to what you want. It has no impact on the outcome.
So, why don't they just do that? The words "incompetent" and "ignorant" and even "stupid" come to mind.