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Posts Tagged ‘President Obama’

GUEST POST: President Obama, please put JOBS under the Christmas tree this year

December 15, 2011 Leave a comment
What follows is a guest post from Melody Himel Scalley, a talk radio host from the Eastern Shore. Although I have some concerns about just how we should go about extracting the multitude of resources (both oil and alternative sources) that the Old Dominion rests upon, I do believe that a great deal of opportunity lies there and that a true comprehensive energy plan MUST be part of the dialogue on any discussion regarding the economy. So with no further ado:
President Obama, please put JOBS under the Christmas tree this year
by Melody Himel Scalley

Unless you have a high paying government job, and even if you do, you are probably well aware that the majority of American’s are deeply impacted by the ongoing devastation to the United States economy since President Obama took office.

While overall the unemployment rate hovers close to 9%, minority unemployment remains consistently near 15% and these figures show no indication of significant improvement in the near future.  Meanwhile, the current administrations lack of a positive Energy Policy is not only hamstringing companies that could add much needed AMERICAN JOBS to the economy; it is also compromising our long term national security and unnecessarily delaying our economic recovery.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) recently released a report that shows the U.S. is on track to actually export a net increase in gasoline, diesel and other oil-based fuels in 2011 for the first time in 62 years.  This is due to the fact that while our economy is stalled, the economy in emerging markets is booming.  However these record exports are not forecast to continue.  EIA is also predicting domestic oil production will fall 240,000 barrels/day through 2012, mainly due to the continued Gulf “energy freeze” imposed by our current administration.

The United States has the highest standards for environmental protection in the free world.  Other countries do not endeavor to protect the environment for future generations as we do, yet their lack of concern for the environment will affect all of us.  We have the desire to be good stewards of the environment as well as the technology to extract our resources in a safe and efficient manner.  The U.S. also has the most stringent work place safety requirements of any nation.  We have the energy resources right here within our borders.    If President Obama wanted to put American’s back to work he has an entire industry waiting for the green light to help him turn around our economy.

I grew up in New Orleans and my Dad worked on the oil rigs.  I can attest first hand that oil industry jobs keep food on the table, the lights on and the rent paid.  If we simply used the God-given resources we have in our great Nation, many American’s would not be needlessly losing their homes and struggling to keep their lights on and their families fed.

We still import over half of our oil and petroleum products.  Instead of selling our debt to China we should be selling our OIL to China and reducing our national debt.  We do not lack the resources in America.  What we lack is leadership and the political will to demand our administration put forward an energy policy that is beneficial to Americans and the United States.  Let’s start the New Year on the right path.  It is time to resume drilling within American borders and stop exporting American jobs.

Melody Himel Scalley is an entrepreneur and talk-radio show host in Virginia.

McDonnell Stands Firm on Obama Degree

The RTD is reporting that Bob McDonnell, a graduate of Norte Dame himself, is opposed to the University awarding a degree to President Obama. He does not, however, believe ND should revoke its invitation for the President to speak.

McDonnell, an alumnus of the Catholic university in Indiana, said “a number of [Obama’s] views, both private and public, appear to be in great conflict with the Catholic social teaching.”

…..

“Conferring a degree confers certainly an imprimatur, or an approval, of those views,” McDonnell said on the WTOP radio show. “So I don’t think so, if it’s a uniquely Catholic university like a Georgetown or a Boston College or a Notre Dame.”

I agree with Bob. Universities who choose to hand out honorary degrees should do so with an eye towards the values that those degrees represent. Indeed, such is the case with those universities who do not award them (such as my alma mater the University of Virginia), who believe that their degrees are only to be rewarded to those who show their academic worth. Indeed, this is echoed in the context the University provides for its mission statement:

This statement speaks of the University of Notre Dame as a place of teaching and research, of scholarship and publication, of service and community. These components flow from three characteristics of Roman Catholicism that image Jesus Christ, his Gospel, and his Spirit. A sacramental vision encounters God in the whole of creation. In and through the visible world in which we live, we come to know and experience the invisible God. In mediation the Catholic vision perceives God not only present in but working through persons, events, and material things. There is an intelligibility and a coherence to all reality, discoverable through spirit, mind, and imagination. God’s grace prompts human activity to assist the world in creating justice grounded in love. God’s way to us comes as communion, through the communities in which men and women live. This community includes the many theological traditions, liturgies, and spiritualities that fashion the life of the Church. The emphasis on community in Catholicism explains why Notre Dame historically has fostered familial bonds in its institutional life.

Certainly, I think it would be in bad taste for the University to retract its invitation for the President to speak–indeed, it would be against its other stated value of academic freedom. However, as a Catholic institution, respect for the church’s teachings is paramount, and to offer an honorary degree to an individual who has repeatedly and openly stated opposition to the church’s core teaching of the sanctity of life should not receieve such a degree.

I think some commentators (particularly ones on the other side of the aisle) will point to this as an a-ha moment, purporting that they’ve caught McDonnell in a lie about his “true nature.” However, I think all this moment shows is further proof of McDonnell’s leadership style: pragmatic solutions that never betray core values.

PWC Rule of Law Resolution Working?

April 9, 2009 1 comment

If you follow the illegal immigration issue at all in Virginia, you are probably familiar with Prince William County’s actions on the issue. In 2007 the Board of Supervisors passed a resolution that increased the locality’s participation in the 287(g) program that allows local officers to begin ICE proceedings, question the status of suspected illegal aliens when they are suspected of violating a local or state law, and prohibiting illegal immigrants from using certain public services. At the time the resolution sparked a firestorm of controversy, and parts of the resolution were eventually rolled back. However, it inspired a number of localities, including Shenandoah County, to investigate their own solutions. Ultimately, Shenandoah County erred on the side of caution, fearing the possibility of becoming mired in legal challenges, and only passed a supporting resolution–however, the Sheriff’s department fully cooperates with the ICE program. 

The issue is still developing, but it appears that Prince William is beginning to see some real results. From Black Velvet Bruce Li:

Today at 2:00PM Prince William County will announce that violent crimes decreased by a whopping 22% in 2007, demonstrating once again the value of protecting the quality of life by having local law enforcement participate in federal efforts to reduce the number of illegal aliens unlawfully present in our communities.  The previous year, more than half of all murders in the county were committed by illegal aliens.  By encouraging illegal aliens to depart, and ensuring that those who do not and are arrested for state and local crimes are turned over to the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement for deportation, we’ve addressed to some degree an important public safety issue that few states and localities have the courage to even consider, much to the detriment of their own residents. 

Additionally, word is coming out that gang activity is down slightly in the community as well. Anecdotal evidence abounds as well:

Here’s another fact that seems to have escaped the recent reports from the county police department.  In 2007, five of the nine murders in the county were committed by illegal aliens, and a number of the perpetrators had connections with the MS-13 gang.  This year, there have been zero murders committed by an identified illegal alien.  So while five people lost their lives in violent crimes committed by people who shouldn’t be here in the first place in 2007, none lost their lives to persons who shouldn’t be here in 2008.  

With word coming that President Obama is likely to pursue comprehensive immigration reform and economic pressures on the forefront of people’s minds, I think this issue is about to come back in a big way, possibly in a way that profoundly impacts the 2009 Gubernatorial election. It will be up to states to serve as policy laboratories for ideas that actually enforce the law.

Kings and Queens

April 3, 2009 1 comment

Much ado has been made over the First Couple’s rather awkward gift of an iPod for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II (coupled with Obama’s earlier gift of NTSC DVD’s for Prime Minister Britain of the PAL loving United Kingdom). I think perhaps the criticism may be a little overblown, though I find it curious that the iPod contained a copy of several Obama speeches. One could say that this is no different than the Royal Couple’s gift of a photo of themselves (though the iPod seems a bit more boastful of Obama’s accomplishments). 

Perhaps more disturbing has been the Obama’s attitude towards various foreign monarchs and leaders during the G-20 Summit. First there was Michele Obama’s hugging of the Queen. 

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It’s not protocol:

For men this is a neck bow (from the head only) whilst women do a small curtsy. Other people prefer simply to shake hands in the usual way.
On presentation to The Queen, the correct formal address is ‘Your Majesty’ and subsequently ‘Ma’am’. “

 

But the Queen seems to have enjoyed it, and perhaps they built up more of a rapport than we can see in this photo. More disturbing, however, is the President’s actions towards King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia:
The bow occurs at roughly 54 seconds in. For those unfamilar with protocol, Mrs. Manners explains:
One does not bow or curtsy to a foreign monarch because the gesture symbolizes recognition of her power over her subjects. 
Now, Saudi Arabia’s importance in world affairs cannot be unrecognized, since they are the world’s leading petroleum producer. However, it also cannot go unrecognized that, under Sharia law, the nation has a long and ugly past (and indeed, present) regarding human rights and has a democracy that is far less developed than that of other monarchies such as the United Kingdom. Indeed, this year’s municipal elections have been put on hold indefinitely. 
Certainly one of the great disappointments of the Bush administration was their less than critical attitude towards Saudi Arabia and other reputed allies in the Muslim world with poor records on democracy and human rights. However, with the Obama administration ending use of the phrase “The War on Terror” along with his campaign promises to change tack towards many of the main instigators in the war, such an action is rather disconcerting. I’m not one to say that the sky is falling and that “the President in handing over America to Islamic Fascists!!!!”…..however, I think his actions hear indicate either a deep lack of knowledge or respect for diplomatic protocol or the latest sign of a much softer attitude towards those who coddle terrorists or insist on quashing basic human rights. 

A Trip to the White House Service Department

Reason Magazine speculates what auto maintenance and repairs might be like when master mechanic President Obama takes over the Big Three’s warrantees. 

Goodlatte on the Stimulus and Renewing the Republican Brand

Sorry for just now getting this up, but politics and blogging has not been at the very front of my mind these last few days. At any rate, here are Congressman Goodlatte’s complete remarks from Saturday’s Lincoln Day Dinner, in two parts. Ill have the complete remarks of all three Republican contenders up tomorrow. I apologize for the choppy focus of the video–this is what you get when your videographer is trying to tweet the speeches and film them at the same time. 

The Budget Battle is On

February 19, 2009 Leave a comment

The House has rejected the Senate’s amendments to the budget, meaning that the budget HB1600 is now in conference. The Senate based a large chunk of its bill on the incoming stimulus money. The amendments passed fairly easily. However, there were four votes against it (arguably the last four true conservatives in the Senate). One of them, our own Senator Mark Obenshain, wasn’t going to take this laying down. From the Virginian Pilot:

“I cannot stand here and join the Hallelujah chorus,” said Sen. Mark Obenshain, R-Harrisonburg, one of the four dissenting votes on the budget.

“We have one-time stimulus money that has been dropped in our laps by the federal government,” Obenshain said, predicting that the economic recession will outlast the effects of the stimulus money. “We’ll feel better for a couple of months, but we’re not going to feel better in June, July and August.”

Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling has similar feelings:

Given the significant infusion of funds provided by the federal stimulus package, I think the Senate did a good job crafting amendments to restore many of the budget cuts that had been made in the Executive Budget.  However, I fear that this is a short term solution to a long term problem.  By relying on one time federal funds to balance the budget we are not addressing the fundamental structural problem in the budget.  Simply put, we are spending more money than we are taking in and we cannot continue to do that.  Unless we see significant economic growth over the next 18 months, we will once again face massive budget shortfalls when the federal stimulus dollars expire.

I’m glad that someone else can keep their head out of the clouds for just a moment to realize what is fundamentally wrong with balancing the state books with the stimulus. Number one, we didn’t win the galactic lottery–this is money that will come from the pocketbooks of hardworking taxpayers is these Senator’s districts, as well as their children, and likely their grandchildren.

Two, although Obama and other Democrats may have talked about fiscal responsibility and streamlining during the campaign, it was never actually about decreasing government. No–rather it was about making government intrusion into your life more efficient and finding dollars to spend on other social and economic band-aids. By throwing this money to the states, Obama is encouraging already voracious state legislators to continue their spending unabated rather than to fundamentally examine what is wrong with “business as usual” in Richmond. 

Three, and in my view most importantly, this fundamentally breaks down the federalist system in America. By making states far more beholden to the federal government and planting in citizens mind’s the idea that Uncle Sam can save, well, just about anything, Obama has paved the way for a centralized government in which states become little more than administrative areas. How are they doing this? Well, by stripping governors of the ability to say yes or no to federal intervention and rather putting in the hands of the budget writers. From Michelle Malkin:

SEC. 1607. (a) CERTIFICATION BY GOVERNOR — Not later than 45 days after the date of enactment of this Act, for funds provided to any State or agency thereof, the Governor of the State shall certify that: 1) the State request and use funds provided by this Act , and; 2) funds be used to create jobs and promote economic growth.

(b) ACCEPTANCE BY STATE LEGISLATURE — If funds provided to any State in any division of this Act are not accepted for use by the Governor, then acceptance by the State legislature, by means of the adoption of a concurrent resolution, shall be sufficient to provide funding to such State.