Obama, the Un-Governor

by: the Common Constitutionalist

 

Do you hear that? It’s the sound of Air Force One. Yes, Obama is jetting off yet again to campaign for or against something. Does he ever stay in Washington? Maybe he can rent out the White House like some kind of timeshare – pay down the debt.

The odd thing is that he seems to be constantly campaigning against his own administration’s policies. As if he still candidate Obama from five years ago and they are not his policies.

So the question remains – why doesn’t he just stay in Washington and demonstrate to all how well he can govern? Even some in the liberal press are asking this.

Well, there are three parts to that answer. 1) He doesn’t really care about the whole governing thing. 2) He is more comfortable on the road because, 3) He doesn’t know how to govern and does not wish to learn. One only needs to look at his background to know this is true.

Before he was a senator for about an hour and a half, he was a State Senator whose votes mostly consisted of “present”. Before that he was a community organizer, an agitator, a rabble-rouser. He was a student of Saul Linsky’s “Rules for Radicals”. Not exactly the encyclopedia on governance.

He was evidently highly educated, but by radical professors and by his own admission, he sought out radicals and Communists with which to hang out.

I liken his management skill to another governing mastermind – the great peacemaker Yasir Arafat. Now don’t get your panties in a bunch. I’m not saying our president is a terrorist. Although he plants them quite often, Obama’s IED’s are strictly rhetorical.

Arafat was offered land for peace. He was offered a real homeland for his precious PLO. He rebutted every attempt at peace and settlement.

At one point Israel was willing to withdraw from 97% of the West Bank and 100% of the Gaza Strip. They offered to dismantle and abandon 63 entire settlements. They even offered Arafat East Jerusalem as the capital of the new Palestinian state, plus right of return and an international fund worth $30 billion for reparations.

As an aside, in my opinion, none of this should have been offered, for many others and I knew who Arafat was and that he would turn it down, which he did. No matter what Israel proposed, it would never be enough. Why? Because Arafat was a terrorist leader, not a governor. He had neither the desire nor capability to govern.

The same trait can be found in the presidential agitator Obama. No matter what the Republicans stupidly offer him it has been and will never be enough, for if it were, he would have nothing to agitate for. He would be out of his element, his comfort zone.

This is why radicals never seem to be satisfied. They can’t be, for they know nothing else.

The president is a radical ideologue, not a manager, not a governor. In fact he is the flip side of Reagan. Like Reagan, Obama is a big-idea man. With Reagan one got the grand vision of growth, prosperity and patriotism – love of country. But you also got a leader – one who relished the opportunity to govern.

With Obama, the agitator, we have a fomenter of hatred, envy, decline and the division, but certainly not governance.

Romney/Ryan

by: the Common Constitutionalist

NBC and MSNBC are truly despicable. They’ve been on the edge of dishonesty for years, but since Obama has been elected, they have fallen over the edge and have fully embraced the dark side.

They’ve lied about the Tea Party repeatedly.

You recall the selectively dishonest editing of George Zimmerman, in the Trayvon Martin case, making him sound like a racist who wanted to kill the black kid.

How about the Romney/WAWA incident from a few months ago. Romney describes his visit to a WAWA convenience store where he touched a couple of keypad buttons, payed the cashier and “there’s your sandwich”. Andrea Mitchell reported purposely as Romney being out of touch with the regular folks and the newsclip was, of course, edited to make it appear that way.

In fact, watching the entire video, which Andrea wouldn’t allow, you’ll plainly see Romney making the comparison between private sector efficiency and innovation and public sector red-tape.

The latest act of reporting malfeasance comes to us again via MSNBC, during Joe Scarborough’s show, “The Morning Joe”. A clip of a Romney/Ryan campaign stop was played which made it appear that the sizable crowd was chanting “Ryan, Ryan, Ryan! The closed captioning added by MSNBC even showed the words Ryan, Ryan, Ryan.

The Morning Joe people then showed an “embarrassed Romney interrupting the chant by saying, ” No, it should be Romney/Ryan, Romney Ryan.” The MSNBC crew was shocked at the juvenile attempt of Mitt to jealously try to inject himself into the chant. Joe and Mika were aghast and their disappointment in Romney was evident from their expressions.

A day later MSNBC’s Martin Bashir simply kept the Mitt-Bashing train rolling. But, why not? After all, Mitt was being overshadowed by his running mate and that apparently didn’t sit well with Romney.

As is more often than not with MSNBC, there’s a problem with this report. They lied again!

You see, if you listen carefully to the video clip, you’ll hear the crowd is not chanting Ryan, Ryan. So what were the chanting?

It seems some attendees to the rally caught wind of the MSNBC report and started calling in to various shows. The eye (and ear) witnesses saw and heard something completely different.

The crowd was actually chanted, “Romney, Romney, Romney” during Ryan’s speech. Evidently Mitt interrupted Ryan to tell the crowd that it should be Romney/Ryan, Romney/Ryan.

On attendee called into the BlazeTv. “The crowd was yelling,” caller Sherry recounts, “the crowd was screaming ‘Romney! Romney!’ and Romney, being the gentleman [he is], we can‘t get in his head because he’s so stinking nice, he stopped us to add ‘Romney-Ryan.’”

“And if you watch the clip again, Ryan throws up his hand like ‘oh, you don’t have to add me to the chant,’” she adds.

Another attendee, Michele Jewett, in an email, wrote, “He (Ryan) introduced Governor Romney and handed the microphone to him. Gov. Romney said, ‘What about that Paul Ryan’ and the crowd immediately started chanting, ‘Romney, Romney‘ not ’Ryan, Ryan’ like the closed captioning on the MSNBC video stated,” she adds.

In fact, what Mitt actually said was, “Let’s try this, Romney/Ryan, Romney/Ryan, I like that better!”

The video in its entirety is so obvious, even the New York Times and Huffington Post had to admit the crowd was chanting Romney, not Ryan.

So what are we to conclude from this? That NBC news has become a campaign arm of the Obama reelection team and will do and say anything to assist?

YEP! Don’t watch them, don’t listen to them, don’t believe a word they say.

Attribution: The Blaze, New York Times, Huff Post

Polling 101

This article was from May of this year, but it is still instructive.

Navigating the Polls in an Election Year

by: Mike Flynn at Breitbart

with comments from the Common Constitutionalist [ ] cause I just can’t help it.

As the campaign season gets into full swing, voters can expect a deluge of polls. Every major media outfit and several independent polling organizations will provide almost real-time information on every twist and turn in the political landscape. The polls will not only cheer or frighten partisans on all sides, they will likely have a gravitational effect on individual campaigns themselves, as candidates adjust their campaigns to polling results. But, voters should beware. Even modern-day polling is more art than science. [I’ve seen many polls (most in fact) I believe are published for only one reason; to dispirit conservatives voters and hopefully cause them not to vote. They have all come from major media and polling organizations that are in the tank for Obama and the democrats. The polls you see are for public consumption and are usually not accurate. However, campaigns run their own internal polling that is usually for honest and accurate. They know they can’t afford to rely on the normally bogus public polls. We will never be privy to the internal polls.]

All polls reflect certain biases–not necessarily in the political sense–of pollsters. Taking a small sample and extrapolating it to the overall electorate involves lots of judgement calls that may not provide an accurate picture of the political landscape. While voters should look to sites like RealClearPolitics, which average a basket of recent polls to smooth out aberrations, the occasional “outlier” poll, showing results wildly different than other polls, is occasionally correct. It mostly comes down to the choices pollsters make in conducting their poll.

If you are reading this, you’re likely fairly politically aware and understand some basic differences between many polls. You understand that the first step in accessing a poll is looking at what’s called the “voter screen.” In other words, is the poll of adults, registered voters or likely voters. The difference matters a lot:

Both Pew Research and Nate Silver have each looked at the differences for different elections from 2004, 2008 and 2010; and they both came to essentially the same answer:

– Polling “adults” generally favors Democrats by a net of 7%.
– Polling “registered voters” generally favors Democrats by a net of 4%.
– Polling “likely voters” is always the most accurate.

So if you have one poll of “adults” which says D53.5%-R46.5%, another of “registered voters” which shows D52-R48, and another of “likely voters” which shows D50-R50, they’re all saying the same thing. When you factor in the relevant adjustments for each screen, they’re all showing a tie at somewhere around an exact 50/50 split of those who will actually wind up choosing between Democrats and Republicans.

For the life of me, I don’t understand why media outlets like The Associated Press continue to poll “adults” on political issues. Around 20% of adults aren’t registered to vote. Putting aside the rather large inherent bias toward Democrats, why do we even care to know the political views of those who won’t be voting? Its about as useful as polling Canadians on their preference of U.S. politicians. [ I sound like a broken record, but duh. The AP might as well be the Obama press office. The know when they poll adults it will heavily skew the results toward their end, which is getting “The One” relected. ]

With the exception of Rasmussen Reports, however, most media and polling organizations use the registered voter screen until late in the campaign. This is due to the not unreasonable belief that, early in the campaign season, it is difficult to estimate who is most likely to show up at the polls. It won’t come as a shock to learn that people often lie in polls, claiming they will definitely vote but then, for a variety of reasons, fail to do so. So, as you see polls of registered voters, keep in mind that there is a general bias of +4% for Democrat candidates. [ Again, duh. Any poll, at the very least, not using only likely voters is junk and is used only to influence voters.]

But, even polls using a likely voter screen can be inaccurate. At this point, we need to discuss one of the less talked about and least understood aspects of polling: weighting.

When you start from a random sample of voters and begin conducting the actual interviews, it is very likely that the total universe of voters you actually speak with aren’t representative of the overall populace. You may have too many male, white, low-income, high education or Midwestern voters. Polling firms deal with this by “weighting” the sample, essentially tossing certain interviews so that the final results reflect responses from a representative sample that matches the nation’s demographics. [ Or, of course, responses that skew the outcome of the poll.]

Most of this is fairly technical and, with the exception of the occasional disreputable firm, fairly straightforward. Where it gets very tricky is where polling firms “weight” their sample based on their estimate of the partisan breakdown of the electorate. In other words, how many democrats, republicans and independents they include in their sample. This judgement call can throw off even the more accurate likely voter screen.

In 2008, an obviously big year for Democrats, the partisan breakdown of the actual electorate was:

  • Democrats 39%
  • GOP 32%
  • Independents 29%

By ideology, the breakdown was:

  • Liberal 22%
  • Conservative 34%
  • Moderate 44%

[ Ah, moderates, got a love um. Liberals without the courage to admit it.]

In 2010, an obviously big year for the GOP, the partisan breakdown of the actual was:

  • Democrats 35%
  • GOP 35%
  • Independents 29%

By ideology, the breakdown was:

  • Liberal 20%
  • Conservative 42%
  • Moderate 38%

So, any poll in 2010 that used 2008 as their baseline, i.e. weighting their polling sample to reflect the partisan breakdown of 2008, would have been wildly off. Remember, the pollster would have “tossed” certain interviews to get to the D-39, R-32 and I-29 sample.

So, is the electorate in 2012 going to be more like 2008 or 2010? Personally, with an energized GOP and conservative base, I don’t think the 2012 electorate is going to come remotely close to the partisan breakdown we saw in 2008. But, most pollsters seem to disagree and are weighting their polls for just such an outcome.

Organizations like Gallup and The Associated Press make it almost impossible to find out their partisan screen. Newer organizations, though, like Politico, DailyKos and Fox News do make this information available.

A recent poll by DailyKos/PPP, which had Obama up by 3 points, had the following partisan screen:

  • Democrats 40%
  • GOP 37%
  • Independents 24%
  • Liberal 27%
  • Conservative 42%
  • Moderate 32%

So, the DailyKos poll expects a bigger Democrat and liberal turnout than in 2008. Somehow, I don’t think that’s likely.

Politico‘s recent poll, which found Romney with a 1-point lead had the following partisan screen:

  • Democrats 37%
  • GOP 34%
  • Independents 28%

(Note: I’ve done my own “weighting” and assigned “leans GOP” and “leans Democrat” to “Independents.”)

A recent FoxNews poll, which showed Obama with a 7-point lead had this partisan breakdown:

  • Democrats 42%
  • GOP 34%
  • Independents 20%

What color is the sky in FoxNews’ world if they think the Democrats, in 2012, are going to increase their share of the electorate from 2008? When was it, exactly, that a bunch of independents suddenly switched to the Democrat party? [ They’re trying to all fair and balanced, don’t ya know.]

I think all of these polls are oversampling Democrats and undersampling Republicans. The nadir for the GOP was 2008, when they only made up 32% of the electorate. In the wake of ObamaCare and a stalled economy, there is no way the GOP is going to sit home like they did when faced with a McCain candidacy. Also, the Democrats were at the high-water mark of the “hope and change” promise of Obama in 2008, when they made up 39% of the electorate. There is no way they reach that level again.

So, every poll you see, dig deep into the partisan breakdown. Your mileage may vary, but you’d be right to adjust the numbers accordingly.

So a Priest, a Minister and a Rabbi…

Who did build that business, then, Mr. President?

by: Vincent Carroll

Let’s be honest: If the nearest priest, minister or rabbi had uttered essentially the same words about personal merit that got President Obama in trouble recently, we’d have hardly thought twice about it.

Reminding high-achievers that they didn’t make it on their own — that they’re not necessarily any smarter or more hard-working than lots of other folks — is a time-honored means of cultivating the virtues of gratitude and humility, not to mention a sense of realism.

But Obama is not a priest, minister or rabbi. He’s a man with his hand on the tiller of economic policy, and his attitude toward entrepreneurs, innovators and business owners in general is of major importance. So when he says, “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that,” it tends to grab public attention — despite the creative claims of his campaign to portray his remarks as merely indicating that business owners hadn’t built “roads and bridges.”

Sorry to his campaign, but that’s not what he said. He said they didn’t build their businesses, while deprecating their savvy and hard work as the engines of success.

Now it’s true, as the MaddowBlog quickly pointed out, that Mitt Romney himself made much the same point when he said “a lot of people help you in a business. Perhaps the banks, the investors. There’s no question your mom and dad. Your school teachers. The people that provide roads, the fire, and the police. A lot of people help.”

What Romney did not say, though, was “you didn’t build” your business — and even if he had, there are two big differences between Romney saying it and the president.

First, we know Romney believes in an entrepreneurial culture. He’s lived it. And he extols free enterprise all the time as the foundation of prosperity.

By contrast, Obama’s background is bereft of any significant first-hand experience that might foster respect or sympathy for business owners. To the contrary, he hails from occupational niches — community activism, academia and politics — in which disdain for commerce is quite widespread.

Of course, you can be a law professor or a politician who bucks the ideological tide. Far more telling is that Obama for years has been making similar statements that suggest a decidedly low regard for commerce and the motives of those who flourish within the private sector.

One of these revealing moments occurred four years ago during his commencement address at Wesleyan University, when he exhorted graduates to take up community service. That’s a worthy theme, of course, but consider how he did it.

“There’s no community service requirement in the real world; no one forcing you to care,” he said. “You can take your diploma, walk off this stage, and chase only after the big house and the nice suits and all the other things that our money culture says you should buy. You can choose to narrow your concerns and live your life in a way that tries to keep your story separate from America’s. But I hope you don’t.”

Several times elsewhere in his speech, Obama cited public sector jobs as examples of meaningful work. The candidate basically offered graduates the following choice: meaningful work in the non-profit and public sectors, on the one hand, or money-grubbing that chases big houses and nice suits. To call this a caricature would be kind.

This nation is engaged in a decisive debate about how to revive an economy mired in slow growth and meager job creati0n, so naturally we pay attention to a candidate’s views of how the economy works. If Obama wants critics to stop saying he’s disdainful of business, maybe he should stop providing them with evidence for the charge.

Deja Vu, All Over Again

Obama 2010: “It’s time for colleges and universities to get serious about cutting their own costs.

Obama 2012: “Colleges and universities have to do their part by working to keep costs down.”

***

Obama 2010: “And we should continue the work by fixing our broken immigration system.”

Obama 2011: “I strongly believe that we should take on, once and for all, the issue of illegal immigration.”

Obama 2012: “I believe as strongly as ever that we should take on illegal immigration.”

***

Obama 2010: “We face a deficit of trust.”

Obama 2012: “I’ve talked tonight about the deficit of trust . . .”

***

Obama 2010: “We can’t wage a perpetual campaign.”

Obama 2012: “We need to end the notion that the two parties must be locked in a perpetual campaign.”

Attribution: Weekly Standard