American Elephants


Two Down, Fourteen to Go. by The Elephant's Child

I’m really troubled. The two most accomplished governors in the country have both suspended their campaigns for the Republican nomination. Rick Perry administered a state that created most of the new jobs in the country. Liberals predicted that Texas would go bust along with oil prices when they started to drop, but 2014 was the year that oil prices fell to $53 a barrel in December from more than $107 in June.

But Austin has little exposure to the energy industry, and business other than government is booming. Texas has no personal or corporate income tax, and job growth continues to soar. Texas is in the business of wealth creation, not redistribution.

Scott Walker shifted power from unions to workers, where it belongs. Wisconsin has outdone the nation on most economic indicators. The unemployment rate is lower than the national average, and improving. After four years of Gov. Walker, more Wisconsinites are employed and his policies are clearly working. Add in an attempt to recall him, death threats to his family, protests at his parent’s home, and the use of law enforcement as a political instrument in an attempt to undo election results. Above all, he clearly has a steel spine, something we have all been wishing for.

Well, sour grapes. Walker, perhaps rose to the top too soon,too fast, and the vast number of candidates, hostile unions determined to destroy him,  a liberal media that regarded him as the most dangerous man in the bunch — liberals will do anything to silence those who disagree, and someone who is successful in overturning everything in the original progressive state is very dangerous to the liberal agenda.

I expected some to drop out, but not my two favorites while the less deserving, hang on. It’s politics, and the unexpected usually happens.

ADDENDUM: I’ve read dozens of other commentary on Scott Walkers suspension of his campaign. The only satisfying answer, setting aside the snark, is that he entered the race on a vast wave of enthusiasm, and the campaign spent way too much money in the first weeks, and as yet people are just getting acquainted with the candidates, and not really ready to settle on a single favorite. The too much money spent too early wasn’t getting replenished that fast. He just ran out of money and poll numbers.



More About the Debates. A Changing Horse Race. by The Elephant's Child

Today has been the ruminate over the debate day. Who won, who lost, who advanced, who slipped back. That’s the part I hate, the Media’s favored horserace. I want to learn about the candidates. I have my favorites, but I favored Rick Perry for his outstanding record, and he has already dropped out, to our misfortune.

We have experienced someone who was unprepared for the office, eagerly believed that he could do anything, and has failed in every effort. He has left the nation and the world in a more dangerous place, and whoever we choose to replace him will have to face those problems and determine how to deal with them and who he/or she will choose to try to reorganize the politicized agencies in their task as working for the American people rather than a political party.

Carly Fiorina hit a home run, not only showing her command of the state of the nation and our enemies, slapped down Donald Trump for an uncalled-for insult, and actually made him blush, and made a passionate plea for ending taxpayer support for Planned Parenthood’s profit-making sale of parts and bodies of aborted fetuses.

Donald Trump said he knew how to do everything, and would be very very good at it. When he didn’t know how, he would find Douglas MacArthur who would do it for him.

CNN and Jake Tapper clearly wanted a fight. Tapper came with a collection of what each candidate had said about another candidate in the hopes of fostering at least verbal fisticuffs.  The back and forth was lively, but what the people wanted to hear was a discussion of what is wrong with our nation at this moment and what they would do to fix it.  Many of the audience don’t know any of these people very well yet, nor what their track record is, nor what their qualifications  are and how they will deal with the future.

Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal spoke passionately about the best tactics for defunding the country’s most prolific abortion provider. And Ben Carson has quietly made no secret of his opposition to the work of Planned Parenthood and their effects on the black community. The Left, predictably, immediately lashed out in defense of Planned Parenthood. But it was Carly’s knockout blow and one of the strongest applause lines that aroused the fury of the Left.

I dare Hillary Clinton [and] Barack Obama to watch these tapes. Watch a fully-formed fetus on the table, its heart beating, its legs kicking, while someone says, ‘We have to keep it alive to harvest its brain.’ This is about the character of our nation.
The attackers responded with almost-verbatim Planned Parenthood talking points:
The supposedly macabre video she’s talking about was highly, selectively edited by right-wing activists. Five state investigations of the issue closed without any findings of misdoing. Planned Parenthood, which provides critical medical services to tens of thousands of women across the country, doesn’t profit from fetal tissue donation, as the candidates imply.

“Perhaps Marcotte & Co. should actually watch the Planned Parenthood videos. In the seventh video (there are ten available now, by the way, with more to come), at the 5:57 mark, is a baby, post-abortion, lying in a dish — its leg kicking. They will also hear Holly O’Donnell, an ex-StemExpress procurement technician who worked at Planned Parenthood Mar Monte’s Alameda Clinic in San Jose, Calif., describing how she was directed to “cut down the middle of the face” of a baby with a still-beating heart “to get the brain.” Under existing state and federal law, that’s murder.”



Australia Changes Prime Ministers by The Elephant's Child

150914-turnbullAustralia’s Liberal party has given the Prime Minister’s job to Malcolm Turnbull today, a mere two years after Prime Minister Tony Abbott won a strong election mandate. Their Liberal Party is the conservative one in Australia, opposed by the Labor  Party.

Mr. Turnbull, who won the vote among Liberal MPs 54-44, was also exacting some political revenge. The 60-year-old former barrister and venture capitalist had been the Liberal leader in opposition until late 2009, when Mr. Abbott challenged him and won by one vote. Mr. Turnbull had made the mistake of endorsing the expensive and unpopular carbon tax pushed by the Labor Party government.

Mr. Abbott’s opposition to the carbon tax helped bring the center-right Liberals back to power, and Mr. Turnbull now says he’ll keep the Abbott government’s climate policy. But his earlier support for faddish climate-change regulation illustrates the doubts about his convictions among the Liberal rank and file. He is more socially liberal than Mr. Abbott, which will help among young people on same-sex marriage, but he is also seen as someone without firm convictions.

Mr. Turnbull is closer to the business community than is Mr. Abbott, and he’ll need its help because his main challenge is reviving economic growth. Australia hasn’t had a recession in 24 years as it rode the global commodity boom, but growth slowed to 0.2% in the second quarter thanks to falling Chinese demand and the world-wide commodity bust.

When the world is in turmoil, the people get restless. Australia has been very dependent on commodities and more competitive in a range of global goods and services. Mr. Abbott made policy on the fly, and made decisions to cut spending on areas that he had promised to protect and to raise taxes without preparing the public.

Mr. Turnbull will have to make the case that Australia needs to become less dependent on commodities and more competitive across a whole range of global goods and services. He is a little more left than his predecessor. He says he will keep the Abbott government’s climate policy, though he’s earlier supported climate change regulation. The Aussie’s distaste for a carbon tax is what won the election for Mr. Abbott.

Australia’s ruling party has given the job of Prime Minister to Malcolm Turnbull turning out Tony Abbott a mere two years after Mr. Abbott won the job with a strong election mandate.

Mr. Turnbull, who won the vote among Liberal MPs 54-44, was also exacting some political revenge. The 60-year-old former barrister and venture capitalist had been the Liberal leader in opposition until late 2009, when Mr. Abbott challenged him and won by one vote. Mr. Turnbull had made the mistake of endorsing the expensive and unpopular carbon tax pushed by the Labor Party government.

Mr. Abbott’s opposition to the carbon tax helped bring the center-right Liberals back to power, and Mr. Turnbull now says he’ll keep the Abbott government’s climate policy. But his earlier support for faddish climate-change regulation illustrates the doubts about his convictions among the Liberal rank and file. He is more socially liberal than Mr. Abbott, which will help among young people on same-sex marriage, but he is also seen as someone without firm convictions.



A Dozen States Start Off The New Year With Lowered Taxes; More to Come! by The Elephant's Child

urlA dozen States are delivering a gift for their taxpayers. Residents of Arizona, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island and Wisconsin will get lower tax bills in 2015. A welcome message indeed.

Missouri and Oklahoma have trimmed taxes for 2016 and 2017. The American Legislative Exchange Council calculates that no state has made more significant tax cuts than Wisconsin, where an average family will pay about $680 less than last year. Governor Scott Walker, a Republican, has presided over tax cuts totaling $800 million, including the largest  property tax cut in Wisconsin history and a cut in the state’s income tax.

Nebraska has cut income, property and state sales taxes by more than $410 million in 2014 over the next five years. Indiana has lowered the business property tax and corporate business taxes which will help to boost employment. Michigan has reduced its business property tax and Rhode Island cut its corporate income tax rate from 9% to 7%. Florida, already one of the lowest tax states has reduced driver’s license renewal fees by $25. New York, Minnesota and Maryland 3rd, 5th, and 7th highest taxes in the country have cut their state tax rates.

States are noticing that the federal government is doing nothing to increase employment or reduce taxes. Democrats are usually sure that if the government has more money to spend on jobs programs, then employment will grow, and the money the newly hired earn will spread through the economy in splendid Keynesian fashion. Unfortunately it doesn’t work, but they  never learn.

Republicans intend to reduce the corporate tax rate as a sure boost to the economy and increased employment. The Keystone XL pipeline is high on their list with its guaranteed 20,000 new jobs. The president vows to veto, but he’s having an ever-harder time explaining his position.



The Upcoming 114th Congress House of Representatives Map by The Elephant's Child

GOPTakeover

(Click to enlarge)



A Little More Gloating — Indulge Me. by The Elephant's Child

B1qUKR0CQAEJJhP.jpg largeHere’s Utah’s Mia Love, getting a huge hug from her father on her victory. She will be a great asset to the House of Representatives.  A black, Mormon American of Haitian descent and a Republican. It is the latter description that is so troubling to Democrats. Apparently one cannot be black and Republican. Blacks who leave the Democrat plantation are to be subject to vile slander and hate. Free speech and free thought are not allowed if you do not conform. I like Mia Love a lot, I wish I could have voted for her.

An outstanding newly-elected Senator is Tom Cotton, of Arkansas. A Harvard graduate, military veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan, law degree. Here’s his victory speech, a little out of the ordinary, and very special.



Happy Constitution Day! by American Elephant
September 17, 2014, 3:23 pm
Filed under: Conservatism, History, Pop Culture, Television | Tags: , , ,

I’ve known the Preamble of the Constitution by heart since I was a little kid because of Schoolhouse Rocks, which used to come on in between Saturday Morning Cartoons–so they had a captive audience. Great Way to introduce your kids to our founding document. Can you recite the Preamble by heart? If not, you probably didn’t grow up with Schoolhouse rocks. Try learning the chorus. And teach it to your kids.




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