American Elephants

Bless ’em all. Bless all the bloggers who tell us the truth… by The Elephant's Child

The guys at Argghhh! The home of two of Jonah’s Military Guys post a little article on why they blog, and it is a heartwarming story:

KIRKUK,Iraq — The first class of Iraqi Air Force student pilots were awarded their flying wings as part of a graduation ceremony here, Oct. 13.

Nearly a year after the three trainees, Iraqi 2nd Lieutenants Hassan, Majid and Habeeb, entered the program, the success of the Joint Iraqi Flying Training Wing and 52nd Expeditionary Flight Training Squadron came to a pivotal point in building a credible objective air force capable of conducting sustained operations in defense of the country.

As operations expand and the number of students being trained increases, the Iraqi Air Force will move close to developing the foundational capabilities that will allow it to sustain independent operations and grow to meet future demands.  The new Iraqi Air Force stood up after the invasion in 2003 but, until today, all pilots were veterans who rejoined the force….

That’s what happened, and news, but you won’t find much about it in the mainstream media. But that wasn’t the heartwarming part.  That came after a speech by U.S. Air Force Brig. Gen Brooks Bash, Coalition Air Force Transition Team commanding general. (Try to get all that on a business card!)

The important part came in a speech by a Distinguished Visitor when his speech was interrupted by a standing ovation:

One of the kids nudged me when the DV started getting passionate in his address.  “He is saying that for the first time in our history, we are not doing things for one man, but we are doing it for all the people of Iraq.  He is saying the US has showed us how, and we must not forget when we thank God every day, we must also ask him to bless the US.”

Well, an additional thanks to bloggers who tell us the things that do not grace the elite pages of the mainstream press. Because they’re important. And they’re things we need to know.

Which is one of the reasons that the mainstream media is failing in prestige, influence and readership.  They no longer understand what is important outside of their immediate circle, and we are beginning to really notice.

Qualified? Here’s another take. by The Elephant's Child

Here’s a new ad from the folks at Let Freedom Ring.  It seems pretty effective to me, and right on.

Joe Biden says taxes are a matter of “patriotism”. by The Elephant's Child

“Your new tax plan is going to tax me more, isn’t it?” a plumber in Toledo asked Barack Obama  on Sunday in Ohio, where the candidate was canvassing neighborhoods and encouraging residents to vote early.  The plumber complained that he was being taxed “more and more for fulfilling the American dream.”

It’s not that I want to punish your success.  I just want to make sure that everybody who is behind you, that they’ve got a chance for success too,” Obama responded.  “My attitude is that if the economy’s good for folks from the bottom up, it’s gonna be good for everybody…I think when you spread the wealth around, it’s good for everybody.

Obama frequently rails against what he calls a Republican concept that tax breaks for the wealthy will somehow “trickle down” to middle-class Americans.  We last heard that claim during the Reagan administration.  There’s not much of anything new in Obama’s economic program.  It’s the old hate the rich and redistribute their income which has never improved an economy yet.

An IBD/TIPP poll found that most people haven’t much of an idea how much the top 5% of taxpayers (those making more than $153,542) pay in taxes. 36% of the people thought that the rich contribute 10% or less of all federal income taxes.  An additional 15% thought that the rich pay between 10% and 20% of all taxes, and another 10% thought that they probably pay between 20% and 30% of federal taxes.  In other words, most people thought that the rich pay far less than they actually do.  Only 12% of the people thought that the rich pay more than 40%.

A U.S. News & World Report blogger went to the Democratic National Convention in Denver and conducted an informal poll of about 24 delegates.  He asked them “What should the rich pay in income taxes?” The average person thought that the rich should pay 25.6% of all taxes.

So how much do the top 5% of earners actually pay?  The group whose taxes Obama wants to really raise?  They already pay 60% of all taxes. I wonder how much he’s going to soak them for, after he lets the Bush tax cuts expire?

Obama thinks that increasing taxes and giving them to the “needy” is a matter of “neighborliness”.  Joe Biden calls it a matter of “patriotism”.

According to Larry Elder,:

Liberal families earn about 6% more than conservative families, yet conservative households donate about 30% more to charity than do liberal households.  And conservatives give more than just to their own churches and other houses of worship.  Conservatives, especially religious conservatives, give far more money and donate more of their time to nonreligious charitable causes than do liberals — especially secular liberals.

Obama doesn’t seem to understand the mobility of people within our American economy, which is alive with movement between the income classes.  And we are so fortunate that this is so. In many countries you cannot aspire to move beyond your station in life.  Americans would wonder what is meant by “station in life”.

And he is going to demand that people do public service, requiring it from high school and college kids.  For his other service corps, he apparently plans to pay people for “volunteering”.  If some people volunteer for pay, why should others volunteer for free?  Sounds like a good way to end the volunteering that people have been doing all along.  But maybe Obama doesn’t know about that.  He only hangs out with liberals.

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