masthead-highres

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

What's the Rush?

GoogleSubmarines022310.jpg
The Navy has announced it will allow females to serve on submarines, but these ladies don't look old enough to drive.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:45 AM

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Investor's Business Daily Covers Our Work on Misdirected Stimulus Funds; Spying on Icebergs

InvestorsBusinessDailyLogoFuzzy.jpgInvestor's Business Daily is editorializing today about our press statement on the half-million-dollar "stimulus" grant to Climategate scientist Michael Mann of Penn State.

I love the beginning (the title, "Stimulating Fraud," is pretty hard-hitting):
With double-digit unemployment in a jobless recovery, half-a-million stimulus dollars have saved a ClimateGate scientist whose work could lead to economic disaster. To save this job, we'd lose millions of others.

As we've gone from jobs saved or created to jobs funded in ZIP codes and congressional districts that don't exist except in galaxies far, far away, many interesting nuggets have been mined from the government's recovery.gov, which tracks the administration's lack of progress.

It's one thing to fail to create real jobs. It is quite another to fund the jobs of people who would put millions of Americans out of work...
Read the rest here.

Also, I neglected to mention when it happened, January 7, that Investor's Business Daily published an editorial about our statement on intelligence resources being used to monitor climate change:
We can't stop terrorists from boarding planes with explosive undies, but the CIA has assets sufficient to monitor Arctic ice and look for signs of global warming? Is al-Qaida recruiting polar bears?

One wouldn't think that the increasing polar bear population and the increasing rate of recidivism of former Guantanamo detainees released into the wild were related, but they are.

At the urging of Al Gore...
...read the rest here.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:31 PM

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Borelli Questions Use of Intelligence Assets on Fox


Here's a video of Project 21 full-time fellow Deneen Borelli on Fox and Friends this morning, discussing the diversion of national security intelligence resources to climate research.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:04 PM

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Media Matters Attacks Us Again

MediaMattersLogo.jpgMedia Matters is attacking us again. This time, it claims our assertion that "the Obama Administration is tasking some of our nation's most elite intelligence-gathering agencies to divert their resources to environmental scientists researching global warming" is wrong because "the program... 'has little or no impact on regular intelligence gathering.'"

Two months before the Christmas Day would-be bomber flew over U.S. airspace in what President Obama himself reportedly called an intelligence "screw-up," U.S. intelligence officials were, according to William J. Broad of the New York Times, "collaborating on an effort to use the federal government's intelligence assets -- including spy satellites and other classified sensors -- to assess the hidden complexities of environmental change..."

In light of the Christmas Day Underwear Bomber incident and other threats, and the fact that the U.S. military is currently engaged in two wars, this is one American who is not comfortable having our apparently-overburdened intelligence officials focusing on climate change -- even part of the time.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 6:49 PM

Project 21's Deneen Borelli on Fox News "Special Report" and Throughout the Day Thursday to Talk About Iceberg Spy Games

FoxSpecialReport.jpgProject 21 Fellow Deneen Borelli is being interviewed for a segment set to air on the Fox News Channel's "Special Report with Bret Baier" program at 6:00 PM Eastern on Thursday, January 7. She will be speaking about the Obama Administration's diversion of our nation's intelligence resources to assist climate scientists.

In a National Center press release published yesterday, Deneen criticized a government program that will allow climate scientists to access classified intelligence data to help them study global warming. In the release, Deneen said:
"Given the very real threat posed by terrorists, it is ridiculous and downright dangerous to divert any intelligence resources to monitoring polar ice. Its said this won't hinder regular intelligence-gathering, but it's also clear that agencies can't yet share data and track a terrorism suspect who was identified by his own father. It's unwise to further distract our intelligence network by forcing it to consult with scientists about icebergs, polar bears and sea lions. The Obama Administration appears to be putting a left-wing political agenda before the safety and security of our nation.
In addition to the segment on "Special Report," shorter versions of the interview are supposed to air throughout the day. "Special Report" will also be rebroadcast at 4:00 AM Eastern.

Check your local listings for Fox News Channel on cable. Fox News is available on channel 118 on Fios, channel 205 on Dish Network and channel 360 on DirecTV.

Addendum, 1/8/10: Note from Amy Ridenour: We apologize to those of you who tuned in to see Deneen, as the Special Report interview with Deneen was cancelled by Fox at the last minute. We'll try to post notices of that sort before shows in the future, when cancellations occur.

This post was written by David Almasi, executive director of the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected].

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Posted by David W. Almasi at 5:27 PM

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Project 21's Deneen Borelli to Appear on Fox and Friends Thursday; Will Discuss Spying on Icebergs

FoxandFriendsLogoProject 21 Fellow Deneen Borelli will be a guest on the Fox News Channel's Fox and Friends morning show at 6:20 AM Eastern [Editor's note: after this blog post was published, the scheduled time for the interview was moved up by five minutes, to 6:15 AM Eastern] on Thursday, January 7 to discuss comments she and her husband, Tom Borelli (who directs the National Center's Free Enterprise Project) made today about the Obama Administration's diversion of national security intelligence resources toward the climate change issue.

Deneen and Tom's comments can be found in the following press release:
Spying on Icebergs Instead of Terrorists?

Obama Program Diverts Intelligence Assets to Climate Research


As terrorists continue to infiltrate America, the Obama Administration is tasking some of our nation's most elite intelligence-gathering agencies to divert their resources to environmental scientists researching global warming.

Experts with The National Center for Public Policy Research are decrying this practice as a distraction from important counterterrorism duties. They further question if it is a possible avenue to renew climate change subterfuge already plaguing some of these scientists.

"This is another example of President Obama not taking terrorism seriously," said Deneen Borelli, a fellow with the National Center's Project 21 black leadership network. "Our enemies must be laughing at the Obama Administration's incompetence."

A January 5 article in the New York Times reported that the White House restarted a program in which scientists are obtaining classified intelligence data from the Central Intelligence Agency and National Reconnaissance Office. Information from these secret government surveillance programs is being used to track climate change.

A similar program was discontinued by the Bush Administration in 2001. Former vice president and current climate change entrepreneur Al Gore began lobbying for its renewal in 2008. It now reportedly has the strong support of CIA Director Leon Panetta.

"Given the very real threat posed by terrorists, it is ridiculous and downright dangerous to divert any intelligence resources to monitoring polar ice," added Project 21's Deneen Borelli. "Its said this won't hinder regular intelligence-gathering, but it's also clear that agencies can't yet share data and track a terrorism suspect who was identified by his own father. It's unwise to further distract our intelligence network by forcing it to consult with scientists about icebergs, polar bears and sea lions. The Obama Administration appears to be putting a left-wing political agenda before the safety and security of our nation."

Speaking on the involvement of Al Gore, Tom Borelli, Ph.D., director of the National Center's Free Enterprise Project, noted: "If anything, Al Gore is the real national security threat. Gore's climate change fear mongering, which lines his own pockets with cash, has stoked a war against the fossil fuels so vital to our nation's economic prosperity and national security. His self-serving agenda is stymieing domestic energy exploration and production efforts. Now, he successfully lobbied to resurrect this diversion of our intelligence assets after the Bush Administration wisely ended it."

The claims of some scientists are already suspect after the Climategate scandal. Tom Borelli pointed out: "We've already seen climate scientists discussing the idea of destroying raw data to preserve climate change models that may be seriously flawed, and then it turns out that very same sort of data was allegedly 'lost.' How can we trust them to not behave similarly with CIA data - such as denying the proper peer review under the guise that the data is secret? The real question is: who's going to be watching the scientists?"

The National Center for Public Policy Research is a non-partisan educational foundation based in Washington, DC. It receives less than one percent of its funding from corporate sources.

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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 5:06 PM

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

David Obey's War Tax

Here's a Rush Limbaugh partial transcript from today on the subject of House Appropriations Chairman David Obey's call for a "war tax" to fund, as this stirring Congressional leader put it, "whatever we're doing in Afghanistan if we decide to go ahead" (that sound you don't hear is Osama bin Laden quaking in his boots):
RUSH: David Obey wants to raise taxes on everybody to pay for the Afghanistan war. Last night ABC's World News Tonight Jonathan Karl had an interview with him.

OBEY: If we don't pay for it, then the cost of the Afghan war will wipe out every other initiative that we have to try to rebuild our own economy whether it's the president's; whether it's the Democrats in Congress, whether it's the Republicans. Ain't going to be no money for nothing if we pour it all into Afghanistan.

RUSH: That's just not true. It's another fraudulent lie from one of the Four Corners of Deceit: Government. "Ain't gonna be no money for nothing if we pour it all into Afghanistan"? We don't have any money now, you locoweed! We're $1.4 trillion in debt. I'll tell you what we should do, given what he said here. "If we don't pay for it, then the cost of the Afghan war will wipe out every other initiative..." Let's pay for the Afghan war then and wipe out every damned one of these stupid, destructive initiatives. There was more. Karl said, "Talk us through exactly what you're proposing here."

OBEY: We've been told for the last year that we have to pay for every dime that the new health care reform bill will cost, and that's estimated to be about $900 billion over two years.

RUSH: Not true. It's $2 trillion!

OBEY: At the same time we're being told by people who support General McChrystal's approach to expanding the war in Afghanistan that we need to be prepared to hunker down and accept what could be a decade-long commitment in Afghanistan. If we do what has been in the papers about the size of that package, that also is about $900 billion. Except that's not being paid for. So what we're suggesting is that if we're going to pay for health care, we also ought to pay for whatever we're doing in Afghanistan if we decide to go ahead.

RUSH: We're not "paying for" anything. How can you say we're paying for it when we're $1.4 trillion in debt? It's not $900 billion, it's $2.5 trillion. The whole thing is rigged. The tax increases start three years before the payouts. That's how it's made to look like it doesn't cost anything. Deficit neutral? When's the last time anything government did did not cost more than what they projected? When's the last time a government program came in below cost? Well, Medicare Part D did, but that was Bush. And finally, "Let me ask you about your motives. Two years ago you proposed a similar tax on the war in Iraq. It was a nonstarter then. What makes you think your colleagues are going to support it now?"

OBEY: I don't know if they will, but two years ago the economy had not yet collapsed. Two years ago we didn't have a runaway deficit which we have now thanks to the collapse of that economy. And two years ago, we weren't being asked to expand another effort in Afghanistan that we're told might last ten years. We saw the progressive movement in this country back before the twenties wiped out by World War I. We saw Harry Truman's Fair Deal wiped out by Korea. We saw Lyndon Johnson's Great Society wiped out by Vietnam. I don't want to see the restructuring and reforming of our own economy wiped out because we get stuck in a ten-year war, a war that isn't paid for.

RUSH: What in the name of Sam Hill is he talking about? Lyndon Johnson's Great Society wiped out by Vietnam? It was no such thing. That's insane! Spending on the Fair Deal, the New Deal, the Rotten Deal, the Raw Deal, and the Great Society, never stopped. We're still spending on it! It's an entitlement. The Vietnam War didn't wipe out anything except the United States. It didn't wipe out any of these programs. This is what I mean, folks. They live in The Universe of Lies and Fraud. The Four Corners of Deceit are government (who you just heard from) academia, science, and media.

Rush is right (as usual! -- I'm happy to admit I've been a dittohead since being introduced to Rush -- at least, his non-KQV persona -- at the famed Howell Heflin "offshore drilling" CNP meeting circa, I think, 1988 [Rush says it was '92 or '93, but I think he's off by a few years. I believe I went home after that speech and found Rush on the dial for the first time, and had to listen to a Baltimore station if I wanted to catch all three hours of the show, because WMAL in DC only ran two hours.]).

On the war tax itself: National defense is one of the few things the federal government should be paying for, so go ahead, Rep. Obey, make us pay one -- but we'll expect you to drop most of the other taxes.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 6:30 PM

Sunday, November 22, 2009

David Beamer Op-Ed Recommended

For those who have not already done so, I strongly recommend the Wall Street Journal op-ed of November 20 by David Beamer (father of Flight 93 hero Todd Beamer) on Attorney General Eric Holder's decision to try the -- I suppose I am supposed to say "alleged" -- 9/11 terrorists as if they were domestic criminals.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 2:58 PM

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Political Correctness Rules

In reference to terrorists living among us (not that he phrased it that way), President Obama said today during his weekly address, "Our government must be able to act swiftly and surely when it has threatening information."

Notice he didn't say "Our government must act swiftly and surely when it has threatening information."

All he wants is the option.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 3:20 PM

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Now That This Important Business Has Been Dispensed With, Perhaps Our Commander-in-Chief Could Notice Afghanistan

Thanks to a bill signed into law by President Obama today, it's illegal to murder a gay person now.

What, you say? It was illegal yesterday?


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:04 PM

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Andrew Breitbart is Wondering...

Andrew Breitbart is wondering why a guy named Conor Friedersdorf, who writes for the Atlantic and the Daily Beast, keeps writing about Breitbart but refuses to interview him.

C'mon! Friedersdorf works for the Atlantic, which this month is running a very long cover story complaining about U.S. interrogation techniques without giving roughly equal consideration to the question of how many lives may have been saved by these techniques.

This is the logical equivalent of complaining about the U.S. dropping atomic weapons on Hiroshima and Nagasaki without examining the possibility that these horrific attacks may have saved more lives than they cost. Did no one from the Atlantic even notice that the other side of the question was entirely missing from its cover story?

(Lest readers think it unfair of me to drag Andrew Sullivan -- who wrote the cover story -- into this, be aware that he injected himself by putting an approving piece on his own Atlantic magazine blog about what Conor Friedersdorf has written about Breitbart.)

MSM writers often fail to fact-check. Just ask Slate's Timothy Noah, or better, the White House staffers who relied on Noah's research when crafting President Obama's recent health care speech to a joint session of Congress.

(Not that the White House speechwriters have the slightest excuse for not checking the original sources themselves.)

When Conor Friedersdorf writes about Andrew Breitbart without giving Breitbart the courtesy of a phone call to give his side of the story, it's really just business as usual for the MSM.

And that, ironically, is in part why so many people choose get their news from Breitbart.

(As a very off-the-subject side note, the Atlantic cover story on torture contains this sentence, intended as part of its condemnation of U.S. interrogation techniques: "But 48 days and nights with no more than four hours' sleep every 24, combined with stress positions, hypothermia, and forced nudity, push these nuances over a line any decent person would acknowledge." Aside from the hypothermia, this is a precise description of the two-month period during which I gave birth to twins.)


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:02 AM

Thursday, October 01, 2009

What's Happening Now

Tim Cavanaugh: Another fiscal year older, another $1.65 trillion in debt.

Michael van der Galien: Everybody loves clowns, right?

GE gets its payoff.

Jules Crittenden: Intelligence without experience is like knowing how roller skates work without ever having skated. (One guess who he's talking about.)

PhRMA spends $9.4 million more promoting left-wing health care "reform"; forgets left-wing health care means drugs gets rationed.

Patterico tries to get a Washington Post correction. Good luck with that.

British Christian hotel owners charged with criminal offense after discussing religion with Muslim guest.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:34 AM

Thursday, September 24, 2009

A State of War Exists in the Americas

Brazil should be expelled from the Organization of American States. It is currently housing deposed would-be dictator Manuel Zelaya in its embassy in Tegucigalpa, which seems to be a fairly clear violation of Article 19 of the OAS Charter, which states: "No State or group of States has the right to intervene, directly or indirectly, for any reason whatever, in the internal or external affairs of any other State. The foregoing principle prohibits not only armed force but also any other form of interference or attempted threat against the personality of the State or against its political, economic, and cultural elements."

Brazil also risks triggering the collective defense provisions of the charter as any act of aggression, including but not limited to military action against a member state -- including by another member state -- is considered an act of aggression against all member states.

Article 29 states: "If the inviolability or the integrity of the territory or the sovereignty or political independence of any American State should be affected by an armed attack or by an act of aggression that is not an armed attack, or by an extracontinental conflict, or by a conflict between two or more American States, or by any other fact or situation that might endanger the peace of America, the American States, in furtherance of the principles of continental solidarity or collective self­defense, shall apply the measures and procedures established in the special treaties on the subject."

By harboring Zelaya, Brazil is endangering the peace in Honduras. Whether declared or not, a state of war exists between the OAS and Brazil.

Written by David A. Ridenour, vice president of the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.

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Posted by David A. Ridenour at 7:03 AM

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Deneen Borelli to be on Fox and Friends Monday

Project 21's full-time fellow, Deneen Borelli, will be a guest Monday morning on the Fox New Channel's Fox & Friends show.

Deneen will appear at approximately 6:15 AM Eastern. She is scheduled to discuss President Obama's lackluster reaction to the ongoing ACORN scandal as well as the Obama Administration's Department of Justice's investigation of the CIA.

As noted here Saturday, Deneen also will be a guest of the nationally-syndicated G. Gordon Liddy radio show on Monday at noon Eastern and on the Great American panel on the September 24 9-10 PM Eastern Hannity Show on the Fox News Channel, among other upcoming appearances.


Posted by Amy Ridenour, president of the National Center for Public Policy Research. E-mail comments to [email protected].
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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:30 PM

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Daily Kos Wants Tea Party Participants to Forgo All Government Services, But Still Pay All Taxes

At times, activists of the superficial left write such stupid things, it is embarrassing to read them.

Such is the case with a Laura Clawson Daily Kos post Friday in which lefties are encouraged to send a faux "Socialist Free Purity Pledge" around the Internet. The gist of Clawson's message is that anyone who attended a Tea Party rally is a hypocrite if they from this point forward ever use a single thing funded by the federal government.

The post had at the time I read it 265 comments, most of which were favorable to the idea, which many of them actually thought was clever.

I ask myself, can the activist left be so uniformed as to believe that when it comes to government spending, there are only two positions possible, that of wanting the feds to spend more and grow larger, and that of wanting the feds to spend not one penny? That anyone who does not support President Obama's government-expansion plans is, ipso facto, the strictest of libertarians?

Seeing how badly the left governs when in office, I conclude "yes." Yes, they really can be this ignorant.

Which explains why the leftists in Congress and the White House think socialized medicine works and that the best way to deal with the Kremlin is from a position of slobbering, supplicating subservience.

The leftists think anyone who attended a Tea Party rally should sign a document pledging they will never use a government service again...

...but what the lefties don't put in their "Socialist Free Purity Pledge" is a pledge of their own to pass legislation offering to refund the tax dollars coercively paid by every person who might choose to sign their Purity Pledge and who sticks to it.

So selfish, these lefties. In their bitter little world, even the people who don't use any government will be forced to pay for it.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:58 AM

Friday, September 18, 2009

A Tasteless Display of Drivel

The thematic mantra emanating from the Obama administration this week has been a general lamentation of the "coarsening of our political dialogue."

So you can imagine my shock and indignation, while commuting to work on the Washington Metro this morning, when my attention wandered from the dulcet tones of Mark Levin's podcast commentary and my eyes focused on an inflammatory back page advertisement in the Washington Post Company's daily tabloid Express. Sponsored by a website called Avaaz.org, the ad featured a large picture of former Vice President Dick Cheney with the caption "Could this be Al Qaeda's best recruiter?" followed by "Close Guantanamo. End Torture. Investigate All Abuses."
AVAAZ091809Cheney.jpg
Sufficiently angered by the disrespect shown to not only one of the country's most effective Vice Presidents but also the men and women of our armed services and intelligence agencies (all of whom have kept the nation safe and protect the very rights permitting such contemptible displays), upon finally arriving to work, I quickly signed on to my Internet browser for a bit of Nancy Drew investigation. Here are my findings:

Avaaz.org advertises itself as "a community of global citizens who take action on the major issues facing the world today. The aim of Avaaz.org is to ensure that the views and values of the world's people shape global decisions." That is, to ensure a voice for the views and values of the world's people who promote provocative activism on such issues as human rights (especially as they pertain to that bastion of evil - the USA), ending the war in Iraq, and global warming... Your basic liberal nightmare group.

The ad that disturbed me so much this morning apparently is part of a metro billboard campaign the group is sponsoring "to remind policymakers that torture is illegal, unethical and a top recruiting tool for the terrorist leader Osama bin Laden and his Al Qaeda network." The group's website says the ads will be running at the Farragut North Metro Station and in Washington papers.

In addition to the tasteless display of drivel to which I was treated this morning, there will be other editions of the ads. One has Osama bin Laden in an "I love Gitmo" t-shirt (in the wake of bin Laden's recent endorsement of Carter's book "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid," it might be more fitting to feature the terrorist in an "I love Jimmy Carter" t-shirt) and another quotes from President Obama and Senator John McCain.
AVAAZ091809Obama.jpg
Though these ads appear to have a limited scope, due to the group's D.C. focus, they are nonetheless disturbing and deserve a response. The MoveOn.org General Petraeus "General Betray Us" advertisement in the New York Times two years ago garnered mass condemnation by a wide variety of powerful political leaders. We ought to demand a similar response to these Avaaz.org ads. Any less is an insult to those who fight each and every day to maintain our freedom to even have a commute.

This post was written by Caroline May, policy analyst at the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.

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Posted by Caroline May at 4:28 PM

What's Happening Now

No independent thought tolerated: A sample of the abuse black conservatives routinely receive.

Polish newspaper: "Betrayal! The U.S. sold us to Russia and stabbed us in the back."

Czech newspaper: "An ally we rely on has betrayed us, and exchanged us for its own, better relations with Russia, of which we are rightly afraid."

Lauri Regan/American Thinker: "Missile defense Obama will ditch, but General Electric he'll enrich?"

Timothy Carney/Washington Examiner: Obama helps strengthen General Electric-Putin ties.

ACORN to file criminal complaint. (H/T The Other McCain)

Speaking of ACORN, defend Glenn Beck.

The Max Baucus money trail. (Is it that expensive to run in Montana?)

John McCain IDs "certainly the worst President of the 20th Century."


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:41 PM

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Reality Check

"Brevity is the soul of wit." It is also a purveyor of wisdom.

The original U.S. Constitution was 6 pages long, contained 4,400 words, and set the foundation for the freest, most prosperous nation in the world. Last week, Barack Obama spoke of his plans for a health care bill expected to exceed 1,000 pages.

Further compounding this departure from the beautiful simplicity of America's founding is the present day propensity to complicate legislative language. The Founders were careful to produce a document that all Americans could easily understand. The hotly debated health care legislation is too complicated apparently for even legislators to understand. As that staggering intellect, House Judiciary Chairman John Conyers (D-MI), said, "I love these members, they get up and say, 'Read the bill,' What good is reading the bill if it's a thousand pages and you don't have two days and two lawyers to find out what it means after you read the bill?"

My, how far we have come... but not for the better, I fear.

I comment on this abandonment of the ways of the past as it emphasizes a concern held by many: that this loss of legislative simplicity implies a complimentary loss of freedom. The eight year anniversary of the September 11 attacks is also a time to celebrate the liberty we, as Americans, have protected and maintained these many years. Though liberal activists have worked to marginalize the patriotic fervor of this most tragic anniversary, the majority of Americans not only remember those who were murdered, they also consider with reverence the strength and sustainability of America and her freedoms (so hated by our terrorist attackers). As we reflect on our liberty as Americans we should also remember the lurking legislative threats to our sacred freedoms, as signified by this rejection of simplicity.

This post was written by Caroline May, policy analyst the National Center for Public Policy Research. Write the author at [email protected]. As we occasionally reprint letters on the blog, please note if you prefer that your correspondence be kept private, or only published anonymously.

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Posted by Caroline May at 11:15 PM

Friday, September 11, 2009

What's Happening Now

Final words from 9-11. Don't forget.

Iran, Libya and Obama's inexperience.

An American experiences the NHS.

Government Electric?

Death panels strike again.

ATR: Top five tax fibs in Obama speech.

Osteoporosis drug controversy in the UK.

Britain may not have enough hospital beds to handle swine flu.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 8:40 AM

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Where Did the Anti-War Movement Go?

It seems it was never about the policy... it was about objecting to the man.


This post by National Center for Public Policy Research Vice President David Ridenour. E-mail comments to [email protected]. | Subscribe to this blog's feed. | Follow on Twitter.

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Posted by David A. Ridenour at 6:07 AM

Friday, July 24, 2009

What's Happening Now

Animals can sue? Can we sue back?

FactCheck.org gave President Obama's press conference statements poor marks for accuracy.

The Boston Globe's Jeff Jacoby observes Obama opposing integration.

Barbara Boxer says she's glad she was rude to an army general and the head of the Black Chamber of Commerce: "That only revs up my people. I use that to send them letters and say, 'Help me.' So I get millions of dollars..."

Robert Gates says President Obama "was not calling the officer stupid." No, he was calling him "stupidly."

Remember, it's all about him.

A case of it being better to have an enemy in the tent pissing out? Nah!

Attention Mr. President: Here's a way to lower health costs. Doesn't expand government, though.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 8:26 AM

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Russia and America's Energy Future


In light of President Obama's trip to Russia, National Center for Public Policy Research Senior Fellow Bonner Cohen and Dow Jones Newswire Journalist Alexander Kolyandr discussed Russia's energy resources and U.S. energy policy on the Fox Business Channel this morning.

Among other things, Bonner addressed the conundrum that Russia has extensive oil resources that are difficult to get to, while U.S. oil companies have the technology to get to it. Yet Russia's legal structure is, as Bonner put it, a "kleptocracy," which makes it difficult for any U.S. company to do business there.

Bonner also discussed the limitations of the Obama Administration's reliance on renewable fuels.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 9:24 AM

Saturday, June 06, 2009

GE's Jeffrey Immelt Fights Back

General Electric boss Jeffrey Immelt faced a tough crowd at GE's annual stockholder's meeting in April, and it's just now becoming clear how much he minded.

At the meeting, Project 21 Fellow Deneen Borelli asked if media reports that Immelt had tried to silence anti-Obama reporting on GE-owned networks are true. During her dialogue with Immelt, her microphone was cut off (it was restored after she continued talking anyway).

Then Fox News Channel O'Reilly Factor Producer Jesse Watters, a GE shareholder, asked Immelt about Keith Olbermann's handling of the Janeane Garofalo interview. Watters' microphone was soon cut off as well, but this did Immelt no good, as next up was the National Center for Public Policy Research Free Enterprise Project Director Tom Borelli, who, as I reported here in April, asked Immelt about GE's business with Iran, GE's lobbying for cap-and-trade, and GE's double-hit on senior citizen stockholders [by cutting dividends after saying it wouldn't while lobbying for cap-and-trade regulations that will dramatically raise consumer energy prices].

Following the meeting, in an apparent counterattack against Borelli, false allegations were made that Tom was there as a front for Fox News, which competes with GE-owned MSNBC and CNBC. Tom has no relationship with Fox News except that he appears on the network periodically as a guest and he lent an audiotape he made of the GE shareholder's meeting to Fox, which broadcast it (leading fact-challenged Keith Olbermann to falsely accuse Fox's Jesse Watters of making the perfectly legal tape and lying about it to GE security guards).

So why bring all this up now? Because it seems that GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt, whom one would think has better things to do, was so upset that three shareholders -- Deneen Borelli, Jesse Watters and Tom Borelli -- would ask him questions about the GE-owned networks' liberal bias, trade with Iran and lobbying for cap-and-trade that he ordered retaliation against a news media outlet that reported they had done so.

Specifically, the LA Weekly's Nicki Finke's Deadline Hollywood column reported Friday night that after Paul Bond of The Hollywood Reporter wrote a story about the three questions and the shareholder's meeting (a story immediately picked up by the Drudge Report), Immelt immediately ordered a GE-wide ban on Nielsen Business Media, which owns The Hollywood Reporter.

Here's how Nicki Finke of LA Weekly reports it:
That's when, sources inside and outside Nielsen Business Media tell me, GE Chairman Jeff Immelt ordered a GE company-wide ban on all of THR's parent company: advertising, editorial, the works. After a few days, the ban was reduced to GE's NBC Universal against Nielsen Business Media's The Hollywood Reporter and lasted six weeks. (My NBC Universal sources believe the ban was lifted yesterday.)

My reporting is the first about the ban or what led to it. "People need to know that GE is using its media arm to stifle coverage about its company, and this is coming from Immelt and Zucker," a Nielsen Business Media insider said.
Finke adds:
...sources inside and outside Nielsen Business Media tell me, GE Chairman Jeff Immelt personally issued a GE ban on all of the Nielsen company. "Jeff Immelt severed relations between all of GE with all of Nielsen over that story. Immelt called Zucker, and Zucker took it from there. Then, after a few days, GE backtracked, and then it became NBC Universal severing relations with The Hollywood Reporter."

According to my sources, Zucker ordered NBC Universal employees "not to talk" to THR. "They took away passes and tickets," says one insider. Another told me advertising was affected: it appears all or almost all advertising was stopped by NBC Universal at what was and continues to be a very important revenue time for the trade -- just before the Emmy nominations. Still another told me that NBC Universal employees stopped returning THR reporters' calls. One NBC Universal employee actually said to a THR reporter: "I'm not allowed to talk to The Hollywood Reporter."

Only a handful of people within the publication knew about the GE/NBC Universal ban. "It was all very mysterious," one reporter whose calls stopped being returned by NBC Universal told me. "No one told me specifically why. But I think some story really pissed them off."
I don't want to quote all of the Finke column here, so I'll just say GE's retaliation evidently did not stop there. GE reportedly also tried to use its advertising clout to get The Hollywood Reporter journalist, Paul Bond, fired (go to the Finke piece for details).

My conclusion: Never assume the corporate and news executives whose work product is being criticized aren't paying attention. GE's Jeffrey Immelt is one of the most powerful corporate executive in the world. His corporation owns not just MSNBC and CNBC, but the storied NBC itself. Yet despite his lofty position, he not only is paying attention, he's paying close attention, and he apparently doesn't like the criticism one bit.

Maybe someday he'll figure out that if he cleans up his networks and starts running GE like a capitalist firm instead of as a welfare queen-wannabe, he can get the criticism he hates so much to stop.

Note: For video on the story as it originally unfolded, go here for the audio of a Glenn Beck radio interview with Tom Borelli (prepared by Olbermann Watch) and here for video of the story on the Glenn Beck and Bill O'Reilly Fox News shows, including an interview with talk radio host Laura Ingraham about it.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:17 AM

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

On the Murder of Private William Long, Obama Finally Speaks

I guess the White House noticed rising numbers of complaints about the President's failure to give the apparently-political murder of Private William Long the same level of concern he gave to the apparently-political murder of Dr. George Tiller.

Michelle Malkin has the complete White House statement, along with commentary.

I agree with Michelle's commentary, but at least the President finally said something.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 11:46 PM

Outrage of the Day: Obama's Silence on the Murder of William Long

Thanks to Michelle Malkin for the link to the Newsbusters version of my post on the lopsided news media coverage of the George Tiller and William Long murders.

Kudos to Michelle for calling President Obama to account for the shameful way Obama has ignored William Long's murder.

Obama was Private Long's commander-in-chief. Long was murdered specifically because of this service. On Sunday, President Obama lamented the murder of George Tiller, whose killer allegedly had political and religious motivations. On Monday, Private Long was murdered by someone else who likewise allegedly had political and religious motives. Long, unlike Tiller, had a direct tie to President Obama -- Long had sworn an oath to follow Obama's orders, even at the risk of his own life. Then, in the performance of these duties, apparently directly because he had sworn that specific oath, Long is murdered. And Obama, so quick to condemn ideological murder just a day before, says nothing.

Even after people complain, giving the clueless White House a clue that words were sought, Obama still says nothing.

You should read the whole thing, but here's part of Michelle Malkin's column on this:
President Obama issued a statement condemning "heinous acts of violence" within hours of Tiller's death. The Justice Department issued its own statement and sent federal marshals to protect abortion clinics. News anchors and headline writers abandoned all qualms about labeling the gunman a terrorist. An almost gleeful excess of mainstream commentary poured forth on the climates of hate and fear created by conservative talk radio, blogs, and Fox News for reporting Tiller's activities.

By contrast, President Obama was silent about the military recruiter attacks that left 24-year-old Private William Long dead and 18-year-old Private Quinton Ezeagwula gravely wounded. On Tuesday afternoon -- more than 24 hours after the attack on the military recruiting center in Little Rock -- President Obama held a press conference to announce his pick for Army Secretary. It would have been exactly the right moment to express condolences for the families of the targeted Army recruiters and to condemn heinous acts of violence against our troops.

But President Obama said nothing. The Justice Department was mum. And so were the legions of finger-pointing pundits happily convicting the pro-life movement and every right-leaning writer on the planet of contributing to the murder of George Tiller. Obama's omission, it should be noted, comes just a few weeks after he failed to mention the Bronx jihadi plot to bomb synagogues and a National Guard airbase during his speech on homeland security.

Why the silence? Politically and religiously-motivated violence, it seems, is only worth lamenting when it demonizes opponents...
Michelle scolds the media, too: "Is it too much to ask the media cartographers in charge of mapping the 'climate of hate' to do their jobs with both eyes open?"

Yes, apparently it is.

William Long was willing to give his life to his country. Because of this, he was (apparently) targeted by a domestic terrorist and killed. His sacrifice deserves at least token recognition by his commander-in-chief.

Michelle's June 3 blog post on this contains the full text of her column. After you read it, click the "send to a friend" tag at the end, and send the column to at least five friends.

Obama does things when he thinks they'll help make him popular. If we keep this story alive, Private Long eventually may get the presidential recognition he deserves.

Addendum: Vocal Minority has good thoughts on this as well, including a roundup of comments from other sources. (That's where I learned of Michelle Malkin's hat tip in the first place, as well.)


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 5:13 PM

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Exercise Your Freedom

In his independent column for WorldNetDaily, Project 21 Chairman Mychal Massie reminds us:
Our fallen military did their part; now it is time for us to do ours. They didn't just pay the price for malevolent marplots and anarchists -- they also paid a price for us. It is time we not only realized it, but started acting like it too. It is time for us to stop wringing our hands, whining and lamenting that we don't know what to do -- and get to work taking back our country.

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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:37 AM

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Airheaded Headline of the Day

ObamaWarWithoutCause052409.jpg

Courtesy of a screen shot of my Google News homepage, I present yet another airheaded news media headline.

Truly, has any head of state ever gone to war and claimed it was without cause?

The real meat of the sentence the headline refers to ("I will only send you into harm's way when it is absolutely necessary, and with the strategy, the well-defined goals, the equipment and the support that you need to get the job done...") has to do with winning once the troops have been sent.

That's the pledge we will hold him to.

I guess the news media didn't think that was the important part.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 3:08 PM

Friday, May 22, 2009

Outrage of the Day: Gay Pride in the Green Zone

In Al Kamen's May 22 Washington Post column, he reports the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad will be holding it's first-ever "Gay Pride Theme Party" at a Green Zone pub called Baghdaddy's on May 29.

Embassy staff, invited through what Kamen said was an "All Hands Alerts" e-mail, are encouraged to dress in drag and/or as their favorite gay icon. Suggestions on the poster include Cher, Elton John and the recently-deceased Bea Arthur.

It's not the event itself that is outrageous, but where it is being allowed. Baghdad.

Having a high-profile homosexual event in the capital of an Islamic country calls the diplomatic tact of the Obama Administration - already marred by inappropriate gifts to heads of state and embarrassing mistakes in translation - into question yet again.

This is suprising on one hand because Islamic law and homosexuality are at odds with one another. It's surprising on the other hand because the other things that offend Muslims are the subject of harsh restrictions and punishments. For example:
* For soldiers fighting the war on terrorism, General Order No. 1 from Central Command prohibits "proselytizing of any faith, religion or practice." When Al Jazeera ran footage from a documentary showing some soldiers in Afghanistan wanting to give out copies of the New Testament printed in the Dari and Pashto languages, officials said the Bibles shown in the footage were collected by military chaplins and later destroyed - allegedly burned - to prevent their distribution.

* People wishing to send things to American servicemembers stationed in the Islamic world are warned that "Host countries mostly prohibit the entry of alcoholic beverages of any kind, narcotics, munitions, pork and pork by-products, pornography and material contrary to the Islamic religion."

* A Marine was pulled from duty in 2008 when he was found to be handing out Christian-themed coins to civilians in Iraq.

* Women reporters in the Middle East have always faced restrictions because of their gender (remember when Ashleigh Banfield cut her hair and dyed it brunette to report from Afghanistan?). The Obama Administration is no different in handling this issue. For his recent tour of Europe and the Middle East, women reporters covering Obama were told to not wear nail polish, to wear closed-toe shoes and not bare their shoulders, among other things.
But a gay pride party is OK? Expect this to provide yet another lesson for the Obama team about putting the prerogatives of their special-interest supporters above traditional business practices.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

This post was written by National Center for Public Policy Research Executive Director David Almasi. To send comments to the author, write him at [email protected]. Please state if a letter is not for publication or if you prefer that it be published anonymously.

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Posted by David W. Almasi at 4:35 PM

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

No Way It's Torture, Says Mychal Massie

No way it's torture, says Project 21 Chairman Mychal Massie in his latest independent column for WorldNetDaily.

Some excerpts (I particularly like the line about Senator John Kerry):
It is a misnomer to call the techniques employed in the extraction of information from terrorists "enhanced" anything. They should simply be called "basic interrogation techniques."

The word enhanced, by definition, means to augment with improved, advanced or sophisticated features. Therein lies my complaint in part. Forced nakedness, sleep deprivation, sensory deprivation, prolonged isolation, sensory bombardment (e.g., prolonged loud music and/or bright lights), scriptural desecration, simulated drowning, i.e., waterboarding, and stressful positions are not enhanced or extreme, nor are they torture.

Torture would be a battery with cables connected to one's more personal or sensitive areas. Torture would be being placed in a stressful position that caused bones to break or legs and arms to pop out of their sockets. Torture is pliers to fingers, hammers to toes, and the removal of teeth by blunt force trauma. Rough interrogation is being beaten until the person is bloodied and permanently disfigured beyond recognition.

Keeping someone awake is not torture, nor is it sophisticated. Keeping bright lights on in a room with the temperature turned up is not torture. It is being made uncomfortable...

...Neither time nor space allows me to explain fully the difference, but the plaintive cries and pleadings that the Geneva Conventions were somehow violated are scurrilous. Captured terrorists are being treated with more respect than they deserve – certainly more than Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and John Murtha, D-Pa., have shown our military personnel. In my mind, John Kerry, D-Mass., has treated our military more inhumanely with his specious accusations than the pouring of water on someone to help them remember information could ever be.

This isn't about whether Nancy Pelosi lied about being briefed. It's a reasonable belief that she did. It isn't about mistreatment of captured terrorists. It is about saving the lives of American military personnel and American citizens. It is about the disruption of terrorist activity and the incapacitation of terrorists...

...Political correctness and politically correct verbiage has sullied and redefined everything it has been applied to – and EIT is a further example. With that said, when does America's treatment of the captured get the recognition it deserves as the most humane in the history of warfare?...
Read it all here.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:52 PM

Monday, May 18, 2009

Outrage of the Day: 9th Circuit Harms U.S. Security

Writing in the Washington Examiner, National Center for Public Policy Research board member Horace Cooper has harsh words for a recent 9th Circuit Court of Appeals decision on "extraordinary rendition."

Horace writes:
A recent ruling by a three judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals allowing the ACLU's lawsuit against "extraordinary rendition" to go forward was reckless and lawless. Tragically, the price for aiding the ACLU may well be the loss of American lives.

This case (Mohamed, et al., v. Jeppesen Dataplan, et al) started in 2007 when the ACLU and five non-citizens filed suit claiming that the five men were unlawfully captured and tortured as part of a "clandestine" CIA program for interrogating suspected terrorists.

...This case demonstrates the limits of courts when it comes to assessing policy matters, particularly those associated with national security. Judges have no particular skills in evaluating either the benefits or the consequences of their rulings on national security and as lifetime appointees they are well insulated from the consequences of their rulings.

...When this case came before U.S. District Judge James Ware, he dismissed this case once its implications for national security became clear. The Justice Department had invoked the "state secrets" doctrine and former CIA Director Michael V. Hayden's warned that if this case were to go forward it could cause "exceptionally grave" danger to U.S. national security.

It is well settled that when the "subject matter of a lawsuit is a matter of state secret," the suit must be dismissed without regard to the question of evidence. And as the Supreme Court has recognized for over a 100 years, any lawsuit predicated on "alleged espionage agreements" also require a per se or automatic dismissal. This case involved both elements. But in overturning Judge Ware, the Ninth Circuit decision flies head long against these precedents.

...This decision was particularly distressing as it disregarded the assertion of the "State Secrets" privilege by both the Bush and Obama Justice Departments.

Furthermore, this decision is sharply at odds with the national-security reality that Americans face: We are in a worldwide war with terrorists who seek to destroy our country and our way of life. They have attacked us at sea and on land, at home and abroad. And recent disclosures by the Obama Administration about a thwarted attack on Los Angeles a few years ago reveal that our enemies haven’t stopped their efforts to harm us.

Make no mistake the precedent of allowing these alleged victims of the United States government's "extraordinary rendition" program to misuse the Federal Court system even though the CIA is not a party to the lawsuit is lawless as well as dangerous.

Publicly exposing vital secrets will aid terrorists and others who threaten our nation’s security. Unfortunately, this ruling, by denying the seriousness of the threat, will only make the effort to save American lives more difficult.
Read it all here.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 6:55 PM

Monday, May 11, 2009

Outrage of the Day: Lobbying the President to Ignore His Oath of Office

Elaine Donnelly of the Center for Military Readiness reports that anti-Don't-Ask-Don't-Tell activists are pressuring President Barack Obama to issue an order telling the Defense Department to stop enforcing that law.

The oath of office President Obama, and all U.S. Presidents, took, says: "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

The faithful execution of the executive office requires a President to treat our laws with respect. (If he who is in charge of enforcing the laws does not respect them, why should the rest of us?) If the President doe not agree with a law, his proper course it to urge the legislature to repeal or alter it.

Alternatively, he could resign his position as executive and present himself to the people as a candidate for the legislature.

As President Obama, when a Senator, did not push for legislation to repeal Don't-Ask-Don't-Tell, it may be that he is not reluctant to enforce it, and the activists who lobby him are wasting their time. This should be irrelevant, however. The President's job is enforcing the law; the legislature's job is creating them.

The activists, if they must lobby at all, should be lobbying the Congress to change the law, not the President to ignore it.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:51 PM

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Hurray...

...for Charles Krauthammer.

Again.

Read his latest here.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:38 PM

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Infidels Are Cool Reprints Joe Roche Letter

Infidels Are Cool has reprinted Joe Roche's letter, with main points highlighted.

Joe's letter also appears to be getting some nice diggs over at Digg.com.

Thanks to those of you who have reprinted it, dugg it, or passed it along to friends.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 10:10 PM

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Outrage of the Day: "Change Has Come. It's Very Demoralizing."

It's been a while since I've published a letter from Sgt. Joe Roche, my old friend whose letters from Iraq during 14 months in 2003-2004 garnered so much attention.

Since last year, Joe is once again overseas in active duty combat with the U.S. Army (no longer in Iraq). He continues to send letters. Unfortunately, he's gone months without giving me permission to publish any.

In stark contrast to his letters from Iraq, which were optimistic even when few others were optimistic about U.S. operations in that country, Joe's letters now are very alarming. Reading them, I have concluded that it would be a very good idea if all of us (bloggers, Congressmen, citizens -- all of us) paid a great deal more attention to such things as the number of troops deployed in Afghanistan (among other things).

Joe gave me permission to reprint the letter I received from him yesterday. He doesn't get into the very alarming things that are in his other letters; as depressing as it is, it's the least alarming one I've seen from him in months. Nevertheless, his reporting on how some politicians and commentators here are adversely affecting the morale of deployed soldiers should be read by anyone who wishes to see us prevail in the War on Terror.
Amy,

It is frustrating and demoralizing to see the spectacle going on in the press/media and in Washington, D.C. over the release of the CIA memos and the debate over the use of enhanced interrogation techniques or torture. My fellow soldiers are NOT impressed, and are actually quite disgusted by the moralizing going on, and the posturing of some leaders against what we, the United States, had to do in order to get control of the catastrophe that hit us on September 11th, 2001.

The root issue is not being addressed by anyone. This is that there was a massive intelligence failure and a failure of leadership during the decade leading up to 9/11. Our country had been attacked nearly every year since the first bombing of the World Trade Center in New York in 1993. The Khobar Towers bombing (1996), the massive bombing of the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania (1998), the USS Cole bombing (2000), including foiled plots such as the Bojinka plot (1995) to hijack a dozen planes in a single day, as well as other attacks such as the massive bombings in Argentina (1994), the numerous bus bombings in Israel (1995-1996), and there were more. Osama Bin Laden had been very prominent throughout the 1990s in calling for war against American civilians, issuing his fatwa in 1998 that led to the 9/11 attacks.

I was involved in the fight against terrorism in the Middle East before 9/11 as you know, and there was a painfully disasterous ignorance and disregard of the threat of Al Qaeda, Hezbollah, and terrorism in general before 9/11. I wrote about this threat in 1995 in my college newspaper and was ridiculed as a racist and bigot for suggesting such a thing. FBI agents working this issue were blocked in their investigations. The infamous political "wall" preventing agencies from working together in order to understand the threat was well detailed in the 9/11 Commission Report.

Our government and leadership failed us in the decade leading up to 9/11. Therefore, in the immediate aftermath of 9/11 we had to quickly learn and clarify exactly what the threat was. There were concerns of nuclear bombs being brought to New York City, and other WMD warnings. We were blind. Our nation's intelligence was blind. The American people were in a panic, and in lieu of the anger over 9/11 the American people were demanding quick action to avert any repeat of the 9/11 disaster. Our intelligence had no clarity of the extent of the threat, so aggressive measures had to be used quickly just in order to repair the blindness of not only our intelligence agencies, but also that of our leaders and the American people overall. This is why such things happened. If those moralizing today want to point the finger of blame for things they don't like about what we had to do, they need to point to our leadership and the intelligence agencies during the decade before 9/11.

I've heard that one of our current leaders likes to say that he told President Bush one day in the Oval Office that if he looked behind, no one was there following him. True. We had dropped all of our personal affairs, left civilian jobs, said goodbye to loved ones, and joined the military and deployed to the front lines overseas to confront and reverse the consequences of the past decade of failure. That was where we were, in uniform, on the front lines, following the leadership of our Commander-in-Chief.

The one thing we knew before was that we had the backing of our leadership. Yes, change has come. It is very demoralizing.

Joe

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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 2:06 AM

Friday, April 24, 2009

Outrage of the Day: Dismantling the Rule of Law

I can't improve on what Ralph Peters wrote:
With the ugly sanctimony of those who never had to make hard decisions, the American left demands show trials of those who kept us safe after 9/11. Wrapping themselves in repugnant self-righteousness, the MoveOn.org set wants political prosecutions. Should President Obama acquiesce, he won't be furthering the rule of law, but dismantling it...
Read the rest here.

Hat tip: @Mysterious_1 on Twitter.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 6:11 AM

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

A (Brief) E-Mail Response from GE

An individual whose signature line identified him as a tax analyst for GE based in Ft. Myers, Florida sent along one of the shortest blog comments possible: a link to a page on GE's website, with no accompanying commentary.

The link is:

http://www.ge.com/news/our_viewpoints/iran.html

For the convenience of our readers, the linked page says:
Iran Policy

GE doesn't do business in or with Iran. Due to the developing circumstances there, the concerns of our shareholders, and our view of our corporate responsibilities, GE and its board decided in 2005 to stop doing business in Iran.

There have been two exceptions to this: completing the work for existing contracts as quickly as possible and humanitarian activity, which is authorized by U.S. Government licenses. As of June 2008, we have completed all business in Iran. GE at all times acted in full compliance with U.S. and other laws. We have always required our businesses to follow U.S. sanctions and other applicable laws. In fact, our policies have been more restrictive than U.S. law.

GE does business in more than 100 countries. We carefully consider the locations in which we do business. We want to do what is best for our shareholders, our company, our partners, and the countries in which and with whom we do business. We devote significant resources to ensuring that our business activities are in compliance with all applicable laws, that they are conducted with integrity and that they deliver value for our shareholders worldwide.

Our actions regarding Iran reflect our shareholders' concerns, our board of directors' judgment, and GE's dedication to being a responsible corporate citizen. In light of business and reputation risks that may arise from doing business with countries designated as State Sponsors of Terrorism by the U.S. Department of State (Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan and Syria), GE will not accept business in any of these countries, except activity that is authorized by the U.S. Government for humanitarian or public policy purposes.
I don't believe this conflicts with anything we've said about GE, and it is of course silent on several of our concerns (such as GE's lobbying for cap and trade, for the new "green bank," etc.). Nevertheless we are happy to make this brief response from GE conveniently available to our readers.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 2:21 PM

Bill O'Reilly Interviews Tom Borelli on GE Doing Business with Iran

A year ago, on the occasion of General Electric's 2008 shareholder meeting, Bill O'Reilly of Fox News interviewed our Free Enterprise Project's Tom Borelli on GE's relationship with Iran.

The video includes audio, with an on-screen transcript, of Tom Borelli directly confronting GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt at the 2008 shareholder meeting about GE's receipt of what Tom called "blood money" from Iran.

Fox News conducted "man on the street" interviews outside the 2008 GE stockholder meeting and found a lot of support for Tom's position, then and now.

Do you disagree with GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt on Iran, on the need for greater regulation of the economy, and more government funds going to the private sector? If so, go here to sign Tom's petition to GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt.

For more information on why so many Americans are upset with GE, go to the Free Enterprise Project home page or visit this post on this blog.

And return to this blog in coming days to learn what happens at this year's annual GE stockholder meeting, which Tom Borelli is attending in Orlando today.



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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 7:45 AM

Free Enterprise Project Takes on GE Today: Join It By Signing Our Online Petition


If you've followed the work of Tom Borelli and the National Center for Public Policy Research's Free Enterprise Project, you know Tom and his crew have been very tough on General Electric and GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt.

GE has its shareholder meeting today in sunny Orlando, Florida. Tom will be there, and you can be, too -- virtually, that is.

You can do so by going to the Free Enterpriser website and signing the Free Enterprise Project's petition to GE CEO Immelt.

Read the petition to review the concerns Tom and his allies have about GE, both from a free enterprise and American perspective, and if you agree, please go here and add your name to the over 1,000 people who signed the petition in just the first day or so of its posting:
Jeffery Immelt
Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer
General Electric Company
3135 Easton Turnpike
Fairfield, CT 06828
Dear Mr. Immelt,

We surround you.

I'm writing you to express my deep concern that under your leadership, GE's business practices are undermining the principles of our free society.

I'm outraged that GE sold infrastructure equipment to Iran -- a country that is a recognized state sponsor of terror. Moreover, I'm appalled you defended your business dealings with Iran by saying "The issue of whether to conduct business in certain countries is complex; we must take into account not only the views of the U.S. Government but all relevant stakeholders."

It's reckless for you to place your short-term business interest ahead of our national security.

I'm troubled by your use of GE's considerable lobbying resources to expand the growth and influence of government over my life. Specifically, GE is supporting so-called cap-and-trade legislation that would increase energy prices, increase job losses and result in slower economic growth. In addition, the legislation would lead to a massive government bureaucracy and loss of individual freedom.

I'm concerned that you are using GE's media empire to manipulate public opinion. NBC News and MSNBC are slanted to favor the left-wing political agenda and network programming is skewed to promote -- without attribution -- GE's "green" business goals.

As a supporter of the 9-12 Project and the Tax Day Tea Party rallies, I'm motivated to take action to promote the values and principles on which our country was founded.

Accordingly, I'm encouraging you to never trade with enemies of the U.S., to stop lobbying for cap-and-trade legislation and to bring fairness and balance to your media empire.

I'm putting you and your board of directors on notice that your decisions are inconsistent with my values and to inform you that as one of thousands of liberty loving citizens -- we surround you.

Sincerely,
For more information, go to Glenn Beck's website and listen to Glenn's first-hour radio interview with Tom on 4/20 (paid subscription required), and/or watch Glenn interview Tom about GE on Fox's Glenn Beck show on February 9 in the video I've embedded above.

You can also go here to read what happened when Tom confronted GE at its 2007 shareholder meeting, here to read a quote from Jeff Immelt calling for more regulation on private business, go here to see how GE lobbies for global warming regulations, or here to see Tom name Immelt one of the nation's five worst CEOs.

Or come back to this blog later today, when I post more video of Tom on other programs, discussing GE policies.

But, above all, don't forget! If you agree, go here to sign the petition to GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt.



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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:43 AM

Monday, April 13, 2009

Outrage of the Day: Siding With the Pirates

Today's Outrage of the Day is dedicated to those leftists who saw in the rescue of Captain Phillips a story of Western greed and Somali victimization?

Visit the "Captain Phillips is a Hero" post on the American Power blog for more.

Hat tip: Ace of Spades.



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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 9:38 PM

Sunday, April 05, 2009

ABC Asks: Is NATO's Article Five Being Upheld?

ABC News Senior White House Correspondent Jake Tapper asks: "Is NATO's Article Five being upheld?"

Of course it isn't.

NATO was set up to keep the Russians out of Europe. Continental Europe* took an interest in that, more or less.

These days, NATO has a larger mission. It's not all about Europe anymore.

So when it is time to sacrifice blood and treasure, you can count Europe out.


*I'm not including Britain.


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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 12:48 AM

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Outrage of the Day: Obama Tries to Bill Young Soldiers for their Own Amputations

In a spirt of miserliness at odds with his usual willingness to spend tax dollars on anything and everything, President Obama is pushing a plan that would bill veterans for health care costs related to injuries suffered in combat.

If this White House plan is adopted and current spending trends continue, service-related health care costs soon will be the only thing in America not paid for by the federal government.

President Obama recently signed a bill with some 9,000 earmarks, yet now he wants to bill young soldiers for the cost of their own amputations.

Morally, the President could not be more wrong. Politically, he's insane.

The American Legion's Craig Roberts put it very well:
[Craig] Roberts said the President's plan would increase premiums, make insurance unaffordable for veterans and impose a massive hardship on military families. It could also prevent small businesses from hiring veterans who have large health care needs, he said.

"The president's avowed purpose in doing this is to, quote, 'make the insurance companies pay their fair share,'" Roberts said. "It's not the Blue Cross that puts soldiers in harm's way, it's the federal government."
Disabled Americans Veterans agrees:
"It's a betrayal," said Joe Violante, legislative director of Disabled American Veterans, which signed the letter [veterans' groups sent] to Obama. "My insurance company didn't send me to Vietnam. My government did. The same holds true for men and women now fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. It's the government's responsibility."
Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) is making clear that it is not only veterans' groups and right-wingers like myself who find this proposal reprehensible:
"I believe that veterans with service-connected injuries have already paid by putting their lives on the line for our safety. When our troops are injured while serving this country, we should take care of those injuries completely. We shouldn't nickel and dime them with their care."
Rep. Michael Michaud (D-ME) makes it clear that Murray isn't the only member of the President's party to object:
"If that is in the budget, I will not be supporting the budget. It is unconscionable and is an insult to our veterans who've been hurt overseas. So hopefully, you will give that message to OMB as it relates to third party collections for disabled veterans, which is just unbelievable that anyone would ever think of doing that..."
Congressional Republicans also staunchly oppose the plan.

Adding insult to injury, when President Obama met with veterans' groups to discuss the issue Monday, he didn't appear even to be considering their -- and our -- point of view. As meeting participant Commander David K. Rehbein of the American Legion reported:
"It became apparent during our discussion [Monday] that the President intends to move forward with this unreasonable plan... He says he is looking to generate $540-million by this method, but refused to hear arguments about the moral and government-avowed obligations that would be compromised by it."
The least he could do -- and I literally do mean the least -- is listen to the soldiers' point of view.

But for Barack Obama, apparently, listening to the representatives of wounded soldiers is simply too much to ask.

Update 3/18/09: It appears that wiser heads (or, more likely, Congress) prevailed on the Obama White House to back down. It remains amazing that the White House floated this at all. It must be chaos over there.
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Posted by Amy Ridenour at 1:17 AM

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