Diary

MI Morning Update: Obama on taxes, a scary thought

97 Days Until Election Day

July 30, 2008

MORNING UPDATE:

OBAMA’S SPEECH IN BERLIN…I received the following from a Macomb County activist sharing a story from a political event she attended:  "her mother is from Poland and when she heard Obama’s speech that he made in Germany, she was aghast, because that is how the communist leaders talked all the time in Poland."

OBAMA’S TAX POLICY WOULD BE DEVASTING…if you missed yesterday’s Wall Street Journal article about how Obama’s policies would affect Middle America, please take a minute and review this article. "History teaches us that high taxes and protectionism are not conducive to a thriving economy, the extreme case being the higher taxes and tariffs that deepened the Great Depression. While such a policy mix would be a real change, as philosophers remind us, change is not always progress."

BARACK OBAMA…a risk we just can’t afford.  This needs to be all about jobs!

RIGHT MICHIGAN CHALLENGE…bloggers, join our effort.  This is a great opportunity to make a difference.  Read this link:

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TODAY’S TOP STORIES

The following stories and more are available at my Articles of Interest online.

 

How to Steal A State Supreme Court
Goo-goo reforms are hardball partisan politics in disguise.

By Jonathan H. Adler

This November, voters in Michigan may be asked to consider a lengthy ballot initiative to revise the state’s constitution. Proposed by a group called Reform Michigan Government Now, the initiative’s ostensible purpose is to restore efficiency and accountability to Michigan government. A look at the fine print, and a recently disclosed strategy document, reveals something altogether different: A stealth campaign to restructure all three branches of government, including the state judiciary, for partisan advantage.

At first glance, the reform initiative is simply a populist reform. The bullet points on the Reform Michigan Government Now homepage say that the proposal will 1) "Reduce the salaries of executive branch officials, legislators and judges"; 2) "End free lifetime health care for lawmakers and bring their retirement benefits in line with other state workers"; and 3) "Increase transparency by requiring elected officials to disclose their income and assets every year." So far so good, but this is hardly all the initiative would accomplish. 

Mayoral scandal cows business leaders

Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Daniel Howes

In the earlier days of Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick’s text-message scandal, a prominent business leader confided that folks like him weren’t ready to denounce the mayor and call for his resignation. But they didn’t want to wait too long, either, lest they appear weak followers instead of the strong leaders they should be.

Too late, ladies and gentlemen of the Detroit business community. On top of his eight felony charges, Kilpatrick now is being investigated for allegedly assaulting a Wayne County sheriff’s deputy and verbally abusing his partner. And the silence from the corporate corner is deafening — a tacit admission that political calculations and fear of City Hall outweigh an unambiguous need to take one step further than Pistons great Dave Bing and urge the mayor to resign.

Council approves two contracts to Kilpatrick friend for $4.7 million

Christine MacDonald / The Detroit News

DETROIT — The City Council on Tuesday voted 5-2 to approve two contracts and a contract increase worth more than $4.7 million to Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick’s friend Bobby Ferguson.

The Detroit Water and Sewerage department had urged the council to pass the contracts, saying low-interest loans are at risk if approval is delayed. Council members have held on to the contracts, saying they are concerned that Ferguson’s close relationship to the mayor creates appearance questions.

Bernard Parker, Ferguson’s spokesman urged the council to approve the contracts, saying many employees working for the firm count on the work. He has said Ferguson’s company has followed the process correctly and came in as the lowest responsible bidder.

Health care by Uncle Sam
There is a better way than HillaryCare 2.0

Dave Camp
Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Nov. 20, 1993. That is when "HillaryCare" was introduced in the House of Representatives.

Today, the Democrats, including presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama, are still pushing for a government takeover of health care. Call it HillaryCare 2.0. Call it Medicare for All. Call it whatever you want, but it still puts the federal government at the center of your health care.

The rhetoric has improved, but the policy has not. It still requires a massive increase in taxes that we cannot afford. It rations care, limits choices and limits procedures just as it has in Western Europe and in Canada. No wonder we said "no" 15 years ago.

McCain gains on Obama in poll

By Jill Lawrence, USA TODAY

WASHINGTON – Republican John McCain gained ground in a new USA TODAY/Gallup Poll that found Democrat Barack Obama’s highly publicized foreign trip has not broadened confidence in his ability to be commander of the U.S. military.

The poll, taken Friday through Sunday, showed a surge since last month in likely Republican voters and suggested Obama’s trip may have helped energize voters who favor McCain.

Poof! The Bounce is Gone

Posted by TOM BEVAN

Is the bounce gone, or was there ever a bounce to begin with?

After the Gallup tracking poll came out last Friday afternoon showing Obama’s lead widening to 6 points from two points, I noted that we were seeing the first signs of what might be considered a "bounce" for Obama. Coupled with an up tick in Rasmussen’s tracking poll on Friday, Obama’s lead in the RCP National Average moved up to 4.8%.

Obama’s lead extended to 5.0% in the RCP Average over the weekend as Gallup’s track went from 6 points on Friday to 7 points on Saturday and 9 points on Sunday, while Rasmussen ticked up to 6 on Saturday and back down to 5 on Sunday.

McCain tries to show independence and conservatism

Jul 29, 6:04 PM (ET)
By BETH FOUHY

SPARKS, Nev. (AP) – Republican presidential candidate John McCain tried to strike a balance at a town hall meeting here Tuesday between the independence he boasts of and his avowed conservatism.

"As many of you know, I’ve been called a maverick, someone who marches to the beat of his own drum," McCain said proudly before being peppered with questions on offshore oil drilling, taxes and stem cell research from a largely Republican audience that nonetheless displayed a range of ideological views.

The Arizona senator insisted anew he would not raise taxes if elected president and vowed to appoint judges like Samuel Alito and John Roberts, conservatives named to the Supreme Court by President Bush.

McCain, Obama work to pick running mates

Nedra Pickler / Associated Press

WASHINGTON — As speculation swirls, Barack Obama and John McCain are knuckling down to the work of choosing running mates with their nominating conventions just weeks away.

Current and former governors and senators seem the most serious contenders, though most of those mentioned are playing coy about any discussions with either campaign.

"I’m just not going to talk about my conversations with the campaign," Democratic Gov. Tim Kaine of Virginia said Tuesday as he declined to confirm media reports that he has provided financial documents to Obama for review. Another, Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota, said he has decided to stop answering questions about a spot on McCain’s ticket because of all the gossip.

A step back from enviro lunacy

Michael Barone
Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Sometimes public opinion doesn’t flow smoothly; it shifts sharply when a tipping point is reached. Case in point: gas prices. Gas at $3 a gallon didn’t change anyone’s mind about energy issues. Gas at $4 a gallon did. Evidently, the experience of paying more than $50 for a tankful gets people thinking we should stop worrying so much about global warming and the environmental dangers of oil wells on the Outer Continental Shelf and in Alaska. Drill now! Nuke the caribou!

Our system of divided government and litigation-friendly regulation makes it hard for our society to do things and easy for adroit lobbyists and lawyers to stop them. Nations with more centralized power and less democratic accountability find it easier: France and Japan generate most of their electricity by nuclear power and Chicago, where authority is more centralized and accountability less robust than in most of the country, depends more on nuclear power than almost all the rest of the nation.

Case for lower taxes

Richard Ebeling
Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index declined in June to just 50 percent, its lowest in 16 years and about half of what it was a year ago. That’s not surprising, given rising food costs, skyrocketing oil prices and home mortgage troubles.

It’s tempting in such situations for voters to demand "action" from Washington. And the politicians, as we now see, usually are happy to oblige: witness the $300 billion housing bailout bill passed by Congress before it adjourns for the summer.