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Bully Pulpit

The term "bully pulpit" stems from President Theodore Roosevelt's reference to the White House as a "bully pulpit," meaning a terrific platform from which to persuasively advocate an agenda. Roosevelt often used the word "bully" as an adjective meaning superb/wonderful. The Bully Pulpit features news, reasoned discourse, opinion and some humor.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

The War on Children

We’re leaving them with a transgenerational bill unknown to human history.

(By Mark Steyn, National Review Online) -
The Democratic party, never inclined to look a gift horse in the mouth, does have a tendency to flog him to death. So it is with a fellow called Todd Akin, a GOP Senate candidate who unburdened himself of some ill-advised thoughts on abortion and “legitimate rape,” and put Missouri back in play for the Democrats. Less ambitious political parties would be content with that little windfall, but the Dems have decided to make — what’s his name again? Oh, yeah — this guy Akin the face of the Republican party. I mean, Mitt pretty much sees “venture capitalism” as a fancy term for legitimate rape, right?

California’s Barbara Boxer opened the bidding this week in her familiar low-key style. “There is a war against women, and Romney and Ryan — if they are elected — would become its top generals,” Senator Boxer told a Planned Parenthood meeting. “There is a sickness out there in the Republican party, and I’m not kidding. Maybe they don’t like their moms or their first wives.” Reichsmarschall Romney and Generalissimo Ryan are both still married to their first wives, so it must be the moms. No wonder Ryan wants to throw his off a cliff.

To win the “war on women,” the party’s general staff are planning their own Normandy invasion, adding to their convention line-up a host of stellar “pro-choice” speakers, including Desperate Housewife Eva Longoria, Planned Parenthood’s head honchette Cecile Richards, NARAL Pro-Choice America abortion supremo Nancy Keenan, and Georgetown Law’s contraceptive coed Sandra Fluke. President Obama’s lavishly remunerated strategists have presumably run the focus groups and crunched the numbers, but, if I were a moderate, centrist, eternally indecisive swing-voter in a critical state and I switched on the Democrat convention to find a bunch of speakers warning about the threat to your abortion rights I would find it a very curious priority in the summer of 2012.

“Republican” In Obama Ad Is A Democrat

(By Zeke Miller, BuzzFeed) - One of the women in the Obama campaign's new video of Republicans supporting the president because of GOP positions on women's rights appears not to be a Republican at all.

Maria Ciano who is featured in the web video has been a registered Democrat since October 2006 according to voter registration records.

"People like me and my family have realized that the Republican Party once was inline with our views, but are no longer," the Colorado resident says in the video.

The video is one component of a larger Obama campaign push on women in light of the recent controversy surrounding Todd Akin.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Lance Armstrong won't fight charges

AUSTIN, Texas (ESPN) - U.S. Anti-Doping Agency chief executive Travis Tygart says the agency will ban Lance Armstrong from cycling for life and strip him of his seven Tour de France titles for doping.

Armstrong on Thursday night dropped any further challenges to USADA's allegations that he took performance-enhancing drugs to win cycling's premier event from 1999-2005.

Armstrong says USADA doesn't have the authority to vacate his Tour titles. However, Tygart told The Associated Press that USADA can do it.

Tygart called the Armstrong case a "heartbreaking" example of a win-at-all costs approach to sports.

Barack Obama the abortion extremist

(By RICH LOWRY, Politico) - If NARAL has a man of the year award, it should go to Todd Akin.

Not only did the newly minted Missouri Senate candidate express his position on abortion in the most discrediting way possible, he threatens Republican hopes to take the Senate. By throwing away a winnable seat, he could preserve a Democratic majority that will sooner desecrate the American flag on the Senate floor than restrict abortion in any manner.

Predictably, the Akin flap has created a feeding frenzy. In recent days, the national political debate has seemingly telescoped down to the question of whether abortion should be legal in cases of rape and incest. The Republican platform is silent on these exceptions, while Paul Ryan opposes them, stoking Democratic attacks and media analysis about the renewal of the fabled “war on women.”

Extremities and Enormities

Which party is more “extreme” on abortion?

(National Review Online) - The conjunction of the Todd Akin controversy with the Republican-platform hearings has enabled the media to follow one of its favorite scripts: My, aren’t those Republicans extreme on abortion.

The unshocking truth is that the Republicans are indeed to the right of public opinion on abortion, as the Democrats are to its left. The distance between the Democrats and the median voter on the issue is not a subject on which journalists in Washington, D.C., or New York City dwell much, because they themselves tend to be rather closer to the former.

Reporting on this gap might require, for example, explaining what the Supreme Court has actually held about abortion: that it is a constitutional right that cannot be effectively prohibited at any stage of pregnancy for any reason. The Court has held that abortion must always be available, even late in pregnancy, when it would serve a woman’s “emotional” or “familial” health.

Akin mess could be watershed moment for conservative movement

(By Philip Klein, The Washington Examiner) - Missouri Rep. Todd Akin's insensitive and ignorant comments about rape and pregnancy could cost Republicans a majority in the Senate. But in time, the episode may be remembered as an important development for the conservative movement.

In recent years, we've become used to a typical pattern when conservative candidates have come under fire for making controversial or ill-informed statements. Democrats and their liberal allies pounce, as do some Republicans and even conservative pundits. But many on the right are reluctant to join them, because they see a fellow conservative under attack by the Left. They recognize a double standard in the way the media treats mistakes by Republicans and Democrats. To this group, conservative pundits who join in the chorus of criticism are seen as weak-kneed bed-wetters who are doing the bidding of liberals.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Barbara Boxer: Maybe Republicans ‘just don’t like their moms or their first wives’

(By Charlie Spiering, The Washington Examiner) - At a Planned Parenthood luncheon in San Jose California yesterday, Sen. Barbara Boxer launched a full bore attack on Republicans, after Missouri U.S. Senate candidate Rep. Todd Akin made his comments about “legitimate rape.”

“There is a war against women, and Romney and Ryan — if they are elected — would become its top generals,” Boxer said calling Akin’s comments a “direct outgrowth” of the extreme positions on abortion held by Republicans.

“Where’s the outrage by Mitt Romney?” Boxer asked, “There is a sickness out there in the Republican Party, and I’m not kidding. Maybe they don’t like their moms or their first wives; I don’t know what it is.”

Links to Barack Obama’s votes on Illinois’ Born Alive Infant Protection Act

(By Jill Stanek) - Below is a listing of then-state Senator Barack Obama’s votes and state senate floor speeches on IL’s Born Alive Infant Protection Act.

A package of Born Alive bills was introduced three times during Obama’s tenure.

The cornerstone bill was the Born Alive Infants Protection Act, aka “Born Alive Infant Defined,” which defined legal personhood to include born alive infants any time the words “person,” “human being,” “child,” or “individual” was stated in IL law.

This definition was identical to the federal BAIPA which was drafted from the definition of “live birth” created by the World Health Organization in 1950 and adopted by the United Nations in 1955.

Following are Obama’s actions and votes on Born Alive. The bill number changed every year it was reintroduced.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

35 years after Elvis’ death, the King of Rock and Roll is remembered

(By Tim Skillern, Yahoo News) - If you ask Elvis fans to recall the King, they focus on their favorite image of him: hunky Elvis, white-jumpsuit Elvis, silver-screen Elvis, country-western Elvis, gospel-loving Elvis, Vegas Elvis and more. Thursday, Aug. 16, marks 35 years since he died. Yahoo! News asked readers and contributors to share their recollections and impressions of Elvis, and the impact he had on their lives. This is what some fans had to say...

Friday, August 10, 2012

Getting it wrong: How pundits are rewarded for wild predictions

(By Matt K. Lewis, The Daily Caller) - On Fox News this past Monday, Bill Kristol predicted Mitt Romney would announce his vice presidential nominee Thursday afternoon (which happens to be yesterday) or possibly today.

Kristol’s prediction spawned a ton of news coverage and Twitter buzz, but now seems unlikely.

This wasn’t the first time a Kristol prediction rocked the political world. Four years ago, I was shocked out of vacation mode in order to write about Kristol’s August prediction (on Fox News) that Colin Powell would endorse Barack Obama, and “may well give a speech at the Democratic convention.” Powell, of course, did endorse Obama, months later. He did not speak at the convention. Nevertheless, for a day or two in the summer of 2008, Kristol’s comments were the talk of the town.

The Postmodern President

The challenge is finding anything his campaign says that is true.

(The Wall Street Journal) -
President Obama spent his formative years in academia, so he's no doubt familiar with postmodernism, the literary theory that rejects objective reality and insists instead that everything is a matter of interpretation and relative "truth." At any rate he's running the first postmodern Presidential campaign, now organized almost exclusively around allegations about his opponent that bear no relation to the observable universe.

The Case Against Reelection

It’s time to hold Obama accountable for his “you didn’t build that” ideology.

(By Charles Krauthammer, National Review Online) -
There are two ways to run against Barack Obama: stewardship or ideology. You can run against his record, or you can run against his ideas.

The stewardship case is pretty straightforward: the worst recovery in U.S. history, 42 consecutive months of 8-plus percent unemployment, declining economic growth — all achieved at a price of another $5 trillion of accumulated debt.

The ideological case is also simple. Just play in toto (and therefore in context) Obama’s Roanoke riff telling small business owners: “You didn’t build that.” Real credit for your success belongs not to you — you think you did well because of your smarts and sweat? he asked mockingly — but to government that built the infrastructure without which you would have nothing.

Play it. Then ask: Is that the governing philosophy you want for this nation?

Romney’s Strategy Isn’t Working

(By John Podhoretz, Commentary) - The line from Romney headquarters last month was “every day we’re not talking about the economy is a day we lose.” This line, which came from the highest reaches of the campaign, was proffered to explain the unwillingness to provide substantive details on a host of policies besides the economy. Well, Romney HQ isn’t talking about the economy these days. It’s talking about the ad that all but accused Romney of murdering a woman with cancer. It’s talking about its vice-presidential pick. It’s talking about whether its ad accusing the president of gutting welfare-to-work laws is accurate. Guess what? It turns out you can’t just talk about the economy when people—and the media—want to talk about something else.

The polls suggesting he’s seven or nine points behind are surely wrong, but given that there is only one national poll that shows him ahead, we have to presume Romney is behind. He should presume he’s behind. And given that there’s no good reason whatever for Obama to be leading, one can only presume that Romney’s strategy in July and now in August is not working.

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Nancy Pelosi 'Swears' Spirit of Susan B. Anthony Spoke to Her in White House

(CNSNews.com) - House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D.-Calif.) told a recent gathering of the Women’s Political Committee that the spirits of suffragists Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Alice Paul spoke to her at the White House.

Pelosi said she heard them say: “At last we have a seat at the table”.

A video recently posted on YouTube shows Pelosi speaking in May describing her first meeting with President Bush in the White House after becoming part of the Democratic House leadership.

Related Material...

Friday, August 03, 2012

Andy Griffith interview resurfaces stirring up emotions in Mount Airy

MOUNT AIRY, N.C. (By Chad Tucker, WGHP) – A 1998 interview with Andy Griffith has resurfaced, where the Mount Airy native is not so kind to his hometown people and says Mayberry wasn’t based on Mount Airy.

“They think that I based the show on Mount Airy. I’ve argued about this too long. I don’t care. Let them think what they want to think,” said Griffith in the interview conducted by the Archives of American Television for posterity.

“A barber up there says he cut my hair when I was a child, hell, he’ll have to be 115 years old,” Griffith said. Longtime barber Russell Hiatt at Floyd’s City Barber Shop on Main Street says he cut Andy’s hair.

The interview resurfaced this week spreading online among fans and residents of Mount Airy. The interview comes just days before a public memorial for the actor is scheduled. Griffith died on July 3 of a heart attack at his home in Manteo.

The 2 1/2 hour interview covered his entire career in which he is asked where the inspiration for Mayberry came from.

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Poll Farce: Pew Oversamples Democrats to Boost Obama

(By JOHN NOLTE, Big Government) - This is the third intentionally skewed media-poll dropped on us in just a few days. Last week NBC dropped a D +11 and just a couple of days ago Quinnipiac and The New York Times dropped three swing state polls with absurdly skewed partisan samples. Both showed Obama in the lead and both allowed the media to give our failed president more than a few positive news-cycles and Romney all kinds of phony concern-trolling.

Related Material...

The Misguided Assault on Chick-fil-A

Banning a business because of the owner's beliefs is a terrible abuse of political power.

(By Scott Shackford, Reason.com) -
As if politicians’ flogging of the fast food industry via Nanny State posturing over calories and nutrition isn’t bad enough, now those businesses are going to be punished for not having the right political beliefs.

Chick-fil-A, the 50-year-old fast food chain whose Christian credentials were always apparent in its decision to close on Sundays, has been getting more publicity over the past year due to its stated embrace of “traditional families,” even as polls show growing support for same-sex marriage recognition.

Chick-fil-A has donated millions to various Christian and family-oriented charities. Of them a small amount (around $20,000) went to organizations that are directly involved in anti-gay causes: Focus on the Family, Exodus International, and Family Research Council.

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

George Will Schools Donna Brazile Over Obama's 'You didn't build that' gaffe

Charlie Rangel: Possibly Racist, Possibly Stupid Mitt Romney Is ‘Embarrassment To My Country’

(Breitbart.com) - Charlie Rangel, the Democratic Congressman from New York sat down with The Daily Beast's John Avlon Tuesday to slam Romney's candidacy, calling his recent oversees gaffes 'racist or just stupidity.'

Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day brings out supporters, protesters

(By John Roberts, FoxNews.com) - It used to be that taking a bite of a chicken sandwich just meant you were hungry. Now it has become a symbol of whether you stand for or against same-sex marriage, or – alternately – the right to express your personal views without fear of retaliation.

At Chick-fil-A locations across the country, people voted with their wallets today, coming out to express support for the fast-food chain after CEO Dan Cathy said in an interview that he is a firm backer of traditional marriage.

“I believe what the Bible says (about marriage),” Chauncy Fields told us after wolfing down a breakfast of chicken and biscuits. “So I came out here to support Chick-fil-A and the movement.”

Ann Coulter Op-Ed: Obama's Signature Move...Unsealing Private Records

(By Ann Coulter) - Mitt Romney presents one enormous problem for Barack Obama's campaign: No divorce records. That's why the media are so hot to get their hands on Romney's tax records for the past 25 years. They need something to "pick through, distort and lie about" -- as the Republican candidate says.

Obama's usual campaign method, used in 100 percent of his races, has been to pry into the private records of his opponents.

Democrats aren't going to find any personal dirt on the clean-cut Mormon, so they need complicated tax filings going back decades in order to create the illusion of scandal out of boring financial records.

Romney has already released his 2010 tax return and is about to release his 2011 return. After all the huffing and puffing by the media demanding those returns, the follow-up story vanished remarkably quickly when the only thing the return showed was that Romney pays millions of dollars in taxes and gives a lot of money to charity.

Let's take a romp down memory lane and review the typical Obama campaign strategy. Obama became a U.S. senator only by virtue of David Axelrod's former employer, the Chicago Tribune, ripping open the sealed divorce records of Obama's two principal opponents.