American Elephants


Irony Defined. by American Elephant
May 1, 2012, 9:29 pm
Filed under: Election 2012, Humor, Liberalism, Politics, Progressivism | Tags: , , , ,

[click to enlarge]

Say, those occupy kids aren’t particularly bright, are they? 

Based on a political cartoon I saw, but cannot find again. Artist unknown. Take the pic, elephants, tweet it, facebook it, disperse it far and wide! Ridicule is a powerful weapon. (please link back )



THIS is what a bully looks like! by American Elephant
April 29, 2012, 6:56 pm
Filed under: Education, Media Bias, News, Politics, Progressivism, Religion | Tags: , , , , ,

This is Dan Savage. Dan Savage makes me ashamed to be gay. Dan Savage is a vile [warning: when I say vile, I mean it], loathsome human being, far more hateful than any Christian I’ve ever known, and I know many.

Here, he proves that he does not seek to END bullying, but seeks TO bully. He also proves that he has no clue what the meaning of the word tolerance is, not to mention the words irony and hypocrisy.

He uses his position of power and authority over these high school kids, as an invited speaker with a stage, a microphone, and a very real “bully pulpit,” to bully those in the audience who dare to be Christian. He willfully misrepresents what the Bible says, knowingly lies about what Christians believe, dishonestly berates their religion (I know he knows better because I’ve seen and heard Christians explain to him exactly how he misrepresents their religion and beliefs, but instead of correcting his arguments, he keeps right on repeating what he knows to be lies.)

I am SO PROUD of all the kids, of every race & creed who got up and walked out on his bigoted, hateful tirade. I’m only sorry that the camera was zoomed in on Savage so that only one aisle could be seen. There were at least three aisles — probably 5 if you count the outsides, and I’m sure just as many kids were leaving via those aisles as well.

Tolerance does not mean that you must agree with people, or approve of what they do — that is the totalitarian leftist definition: “give us more money & control or you are a ‘H8er’.” If everyone agreed with one another, there’d be no need for tolerance. Tolerance means living in peace with people with whom you disagree — even strongly. Something Savage has never shown any evidence of doing. Something Christians do every day.

Tolerance is what these Christian kids did! (assuming they were all Christian, which may not be the case) –  coming to see him speak knowing who he was, knowing he was gay, knowing that he was a hateful, anti-Christian, anti-religious bigot.

And when he started berating them from his bully pulpit, they didn’t protest, they didn’t throw things at him and try to shout him down — as so-called “progressives” regularly do to conservative speakers. Quite the contrary, they let him speak, and quietly left, refusing to sit there and be bullied.

And when these throngs of kids left, what did this “progressive, enlightened, tolerant” man do? He pretended HE is the victim and called these high school kids (guilty of nothing) “pansy ass” (a little self-loathing, internal homophobia there Dan?) for leaving.

The most courageous people in that auditorium were those who stood up and left, in front of an auditorium full of their peers.

Dan was the least courageous. Dan was and is a coward. Bullying Christian kids, knowing full well that the very ‘worst’ thing they would do is possibly pray for him.

He has the GALL to accuse Christianity of teaching that women should be stoned (which shows he doesn’t understand a thing about Christianity Hey Dan! New Testament, Google it!) and to intimate that Republicans might want to do that much or more, cus ‘who knows where they’re going” as he put it — at the very same time his “progressive” president is sending millions to Palestinians who actually DO kill people for being gay.

He picks on high school kids whom he knows will do nothing,  but doesn’t have the balls to criticize the only religion on Earth that actually DOES stone, hang and burn gays to death in the name of their religion. You, Dan, are the “pansy ass”. The kids who laughed & applauded you at least have the excuse of being young and ignorant.

And lastly, I fervently hope it was more than just Christians who left!

I hope students of other faiths, and no faith at all, got up and left too. Most of all, I hope at least a few of those who left were gay kids who recognized the glaring hypocrisy of this “man” spewing hate and lies in the name of tolerance.

They were RIGHT to leave. Dan Savage is the bully. Dan Savage is the bigot.

[PS: He is supported & endorsed by Barack Obama & Democrats.]



Bill Whittle Pulls No Punches by The Elephant's Child
March 31, 2012, 8:35 am
Filed under: Iran, Politics, Progressivism, United Kingdom | Tags: , , , ,

Bill Whittle addresses this administration and all its works and finds them to be “Merchants of Despair.” Whether intentionally or unintentionally, they have brought Chicago style politics to the nation’s capitol. Actions have consequences, and they did not understand what the consequences of their actions would be.

They thought it was a game, a political game, in which they won, and so could take advantage of the financial crisis to do things that they well knew that the American people did not want. But they did them anyway, in a kind of thumbing of the nose to the public, who did not understand what was afoot.

They brought debt and unemployment, inflation and misery to millions of Americans, and thought it didn’t matter. They used the ‘government’s money’ to pay back those who supported them, and thus rewarded, they can expect support again, to do it all over. That’s not free market capitalism, and not a free country and not a free people. And we don’t do things that way.



The CON Artist by The Elephant's Child

Bambam needs a new campaign slogan… by American Elephant
February 26, 2012, 2:20 pm
Filed under: Election 2012, Humor, Politics | Tags: , ,

…so let’s help him out. I just slapped the above together, using a brilliant Death Star photoshop that’s been floating around (artist unknown), but I’m not sure I’ve got the best slogan. Got something better? Let me hear it in the comments.

But don’t feel limited to Star Wars. Got other ideas? Throw ‘em out there; I love the inspiration!

Good mockery is a powerful weapon!



Happy 101st Birthday, President Reagan! by American Elephant

A nice tribute to the Gipper on what would be his 101st birthday from Americans for Prosperity. Reagan v. the anti-Reagan. Better yet, they’re airing on TV.



Who cares if Romney wants to index? A generation of young people may. by American Elephant
February 4, 2012, 7:30 am
Filed under: Capitalism, Economy, Election 2012, Liberalism, News, Politics | Tags: , ,

We’re excited to present the following guest-post, contributed by reader & twitter friend, Erik Newton (follow him on twitter at @Newtonslawpc), a smart young conservative who makes lots of sense. Give him a read, we’re sure you’ll think so too.

A firestorm erupted this week in conservative circles when Republican presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney (R-MA) reaffirmed his longstanding commitment to automatic indexing to inflation of increases in the federal minimum wage. Romney held this position at least as far back as his campaign for governor of Massachusetts in 2002. To many Romney supporters, this is their candidate again sticking to his guns, showing his “constancy,” and refusing to flip-flop. It is the second such major issue on which he’s refused to nuance his views to come in line with those of many conservatives in the GOP base. The first is Romneycare, from which Romney also refuses to distance himself even in the heat of the 2012 campaign.

In 2007, Romney said he supported indexing the minimum wage because he likes the “idea of getting the political debate out and [likes] the idea of not having the huge jumps as we do now.” Most practical politicos probably didn’t think much ado about this explanation, but it has fed some critics. The first part of Romney’s defense, that indexing “get[s] the political debate out,” seems to detractors like Romney is again trying to back what is of immediate political advantage to him. He’s backing an “anti-growth” policy, as Club for Growth’s Chris Chocola calls it, so he doesn’t have to defend free markets when it comes to wage prices, so goes the criticism of Romney.

But to understand what is behind the criticism of Romney’s minimum wage position as a policy matter, one has to take a closer look at the minimum wage and the state of the law. To take the second area first, Romney’s own explanation for his indexing support relied, in part, on avoiding “the huge jumps” we’ve had in the federal minimum wage recently. From an economic standpoint, Romney does have a fair amount of support for this argument—large shifts in the wage price floor create dramatic distortions in the wage market. Smaller, incremental shifts create smaller distortions. But Romney’s leading opponent in the 2012 GOP presidential contest, Newt Gingrich, uses the former’s own argument against him. He points out periods of hyperinflation (14% in 1980; 15% in 1947-48), and says indexing “would be a very dangerous idea,” for exactly the reason Romney supports it. In an inflationary period, the minimum wage would jump dramatically through indexing, something Romney professes the desire to avoid.

There is no avoiding that several states have adopted a minimum wage that is indexed to inflation. Some of these measures were passed through the legislature, such as Florida, whereas others were passed by voter initiative, such as Washington. All told, there are six states with annual minimum wage increases indexed to inflation: Florida, Washington, Arizona, Montana, Ohio, and Missouri—quite a mix of the red, purple, and blue. Since these laws were adopted, the nation hasn’t faced the level of inflation, as referenced by Gingrich, which would put to the test the reasonableness of these automatic hikes. While certainly not a majority of states, or even an “evolving trend,” these state policies show Romney is not alone among politicians (not even among Republicans, at least in private), who would love to avoid taking minimum wage votes.

So, what’s the big deal with the minimum wage? As Rush Limbaugh said on his radio program, “Why not $10. Yeah, okay. Well, why not $15? Now we’re talking!” This may sound a little bombastic, but the late Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts was long an advocate for a “living wage.” Kennedy’s idea was to guarantee each citizen an amount earned that will cover their basic costs of living, which is only a small change in policy and no change in logic from current law. But the point Limbaugh highlights is a concern with both a “living wage” and an ever-increasing “minimum wage”: the higher the wage floor, the more low-skilled and younger workers will be out of work. These laborers are priced out of the market for work, because they can’t charge as much for their labor and employers aren’t allowed to pay less.

Without a wage price floor (a minimum wage), small and other business are more likely to hire unskilled and younger workers. To be clear, depending on the job, some companies are still able to hire such workers even at a pretty high minimum wage. There is no denying that McDonald’s hired 50,000 such workers last year. But all this says is that for McDonald’s, with its success and profit margins, it is willing to hire X number of people even at the current $7.25 federal wage price floor. It says nothing, for example, about how many young and low-skilled laborers McDonald’s would hire at, say, a wage rate of $4.25. Additionally, President Obama has complained about the rise of automation, including ATMs. Left unexamined is how the government’s distortion of the wage market drives companies towards what might otherwise be a prohibitive level of investment required for automation. This is particularly true of a company like McDonald’s, which spends hundreds of millions each year inventing or implementing such devices as the computerized fountain drink dispenser—a job previously done by a young worker. Of course, a fact lost on the President is that most of this trend in automation is nothing more than the march of economic history (no more jobs filling drinks; now you have to know how to fix the drink filler). But it is important to point out that wage market distortions, such as the minimum wage, also drive companies toward these types of investments today by making the investments presently more cost-effective.

The reality is that most minimum wage jobs (indeed, the vast majority) are held by young and unskilled workers. Those are the people hurt most by a minimum wage and its effects. Those effects mean less jobs (remember full service gas stations and window washers? (Yes, I know NJ and OR still have them by state fiat!)) and higher unemployment. The unemployment rate among 16-17 year-olds is 28.1 percent and 18-19 year-olds is 22.4 percent. Among young African-Americans the unemployment rate is over 38 percent—a national disgrace of epic proportions. Having a job gives a person dignity and one’s first or early jobs train them in productivity and open doors for future promotion and social mobility. It is also an exercise individual liberty. If a young person, whose fundamental right is to their own labor, chooses to agree with a business to work at a certain rate, why should the government say otherwise? One needs to learn to trade their services, exercise their rights, and make these important decisions. But the minimum wage and its effects hinder these very important hallmarks of a successful society.

By Erik Newton (Twitter: @newtonslawpc)



Saving the Planet With Ideology, Rainbows and Taxpayers’ Billions by The Elephant's Child

Marita Noon, at the Energy Tribune, has located a speech that Obama made to the Detroit Economic Club in May 2007, when he was a mere Senator from Illinois, running for the presidency.  He rolled out his ‘Three Part Plan to Change the Cars we Drive and the Fuels we Use: in order to reduce our dependence on foreign oil and fight the cause of global warming.’

By 2020, he expected his plan to cut our oil consumption by 2.5 million barrels of oil per day; take 50 million cars’ worth of pollution off the road; save more than $50 billion at the gas pump; and help the auto industry save millions of jobs and regain its competitive footing in the world. His plan relied on three key components:  1. Fuel Economy Standards: he envisioned a 4% increase each year. This would save 1.3 million barrels of oil per day and 20 billion gallons of gasoline per year. 2.Help for Consumers Lots more tax credits for buying ultra-efficient vehicles. 3. Help for Manufacturers: Retiree health costs add $1500 to the cost of every car. Help with health care costs in return investing 50% of savings into technology for fuel-efficient cars + tax incentives for retooling. His very long speech contained the following:

We know what the dangers are here. We know that our oil addiction is jeopardizing our national security – that we fuel our energy needs by sending $800 million a day to countries that include some of the most despotic, volatile regimes in the world. We know that oil money funds everything from the madrassas that plant the seeds of terror in young minds to the Sunni insurgents that attack our troops in Iraq. It corrupts budding democracies, and gives dictators from Venezuela to Iran the power to freely defy and threaten the international community. It even presents a target for Osama bin Laden, who has told al Qaeda to, “focus your operations on oil, especially in Iraq and the Gulf area, since this will cause [the Americans] to die off on their own.”

We know that our oil dependency is jeopardizing our planet as well – that the fossil fuels we burn are setting off a chain of dangerous weather patterns that could condemn future generations to global catastrophe. We see the effects of global climate change in our communities and around the world in record

drought, famine, and forest fires. Hurricanes and typhoons are growing in intensity, and rapidly melting ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland could raise global sea levels high enough to swallow up large portions of every coastal city and town.

Oops!

Well, he was invested in cap-and-trade then as well, and he went on at great lengths about biofuels, a National low-Carbon Fuel Standard, jeopardizing the planet, oil addiction, alternate fuels, green energy,  hurricanes and typhoons, those old rising sea-levels, etc. etc. He added “For the sake of our security, our economy, our jobs and our planet, the age of oil must end in our time.”

Sheesh, wasn’t anyone paying attention at the time? These were members of the Economic Club. No economists?

The Ideology got way ahead of Reality.  And so we got the Volt, the car nobody wants, even with hefty subsidy and battery packs that catch on fire.  At least the dealers don’t want it. They are turning down their allocations.  Many of the Volts that were sold went to governments. New York City bought 50, the city of DeLand, FL used part of a $1.2 million grant to buy 5. The President committed the federal government to buying more than 100.  And GE, who is making charging stations, will buy 3000 by 2015. That’s beyond crony capitalism into some kind of crony incest.

Citing statistics for the Nissan Leaf, Forbes Magazine counts the cost of an electric vehicle (EV): “At $0.11/KWH for electricity and $4.00/gallon for gasoline, you would have to drive the Leaf 164,000 miles to recover its additional purchase cost. Counting interest, the miles to payback is 197,000 miles. Because it is almost impossible to drive a Leaf more than 60 miles a day, the payback with interest would take more than nine years.” But, they state: “The cost is not the biggest problem.” “The biggest drawback is not range, but refueling time. A few minutes spent at a gas station will give a conventional car 300 to 400 miles of range. In contrast, it takes 20 hours to completely recharge a Nissan Leaf from 110V house current. An extra-cost 240V charger shortens this time to 8 hours. There are expensive 480V chargers that can cut this time to 4 hours, but Nissan cautions that using them very often will shorten the life of the car’s batteries.”

Obama gave billions to “green” energy companies, Solyndra is just one of the many failures.  Beacon Power Company filed for Bankruptcy — they had developed technology to provide energy storage for the intermittent solar and wind industries. EnerDel made lithium-ion batteries for electric cars, but there really wasn’t any demand and they went bankrupt, as did a number of other companies financed by the administration.

Never fear, President Obama plans to ride his rescue of General Motors and Chrysler to a re-election victory.  He made a surprise visit to the Detroit auto show, and AP reports that the auto bailout is a case study for his efforts to revive the economy and a potential point of contrast with Republican Mitt Romney — who opposed Obama’s decision to pour billions of dollars into the auto companies. The president’s campaign sees the auto storyline as a potent argument against Romney — who even though he is the son of a Detroit auto executive actually opposed the bailout.  That storyline requires a quite a bit of embroidering, and the public may just possibly not be as dumb as Obama thinks they are.

Well, Obama hasn’t got a record of accomplishments to run on, but he’s skilled at telling stories. Maybe it’ll work.



NEWSFLASH: Obama Doesn’t Understand the Laws of Supply and Demand. by The Elephant's Child
April 28, 2011, 7:41 pm
Filed under: Capitalism, Economy, Energy, Junk Science | Tags: , , ,

If President Barack Obama were to schedule a major speech tomorrow, and tell the assorted networks  that America was returning to oil production— he was lifting the federal bans on drilling—the price of oil would start dropping the next day.

  • In 2008, Senator Ken Salazar (D-CO) refused to vote for any new offshore drilling.  In a conversation with minority leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Salazar objected to allowing any drilling on America’s outer continental shelf—even if gas prices reached $10 a gallon.  Obama named him Secretary of the Interior.
  • In 2008, Steven Chu, head of the Lawrence Livermore Laboratories at U. of California Berkeley, told the Wall Street Journal that “Somehow we have to figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the levels in Europe.” he also said “We have lots of fossil fuel; that’s really both good and bad news.  We won’t run out of energy, but there’s enough carbon in the ground to really cook us.” Obama named him Secretary of Energy.
  • During the 2008 campaign, candidate Obama said “Under my plan of a cap-and-trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.” And “So if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can.  It’s just that it will bankrupt them.” He was elected president.

I don’t know if Obama ever took a class in economics, but he seems to be totally unfamiliar with the basic laws of supply and demand.  When supply is restricted, the cost goes up. When the cost of gasoline goes up, so does the cost of everything else.

Goods are transported by truck, and when delivery costs more, the price of your groceries cost more. When the government is busily printing money, the value of the dollar goes down. Oddly enough, the price of gas and the cost of food are not included in the government’s statistics on inflation. You have to keep track of that yourself.

President Obama speaks enthusiastically about his clean, green economy of tomorrow; but he doesn’t seem to understand that windmills and solar arrays produce only small amounts of electricity, which has little to do with transportation, and does not replace gasoline.  Our transportation sector is powered by petroleum, and will continue to be powered by petroleum far into the foreseeable future.  There is no alternative.

Why do I say that an Obama speech turning the energy sector free would start to bring down oil prices right away?  Ronald Reagan did it, and George W. Bush did it.  There is evidence. And the evidence that Obama’s clean, green government subsidized energy will prove to be an effective alternative — ever?  Nonexistent.



There’s a Bloodbath in Syria! by The Elephant's Child
April 26, 2011, 8:46 pm
Filed under: Foreign Policy, Islam, Middle East | Tags: , , , , ,

In Syria, the Assad regime made a fateful decision this week.  They used their army —even including tanks —to kill civilians protesting peacefully.  Bashar Assad made the decision that it was better to kill hundreds of unarmed Syrian citizens than to risk the fall of his regime.  This is the man whom Nancy Pelosi, John Kerry and Hillary Clinton thought was a peaceful reformer. As Elliott Abrams says:

In Syria and Lebanon, there is confusion about the American position. Many believe we are Assad well-wishers, and certainly Obama’s policy for 2009 and 2010 lent credence to that view. Now, the administration is coy: It talks of new sanctions but does not impose them yet. It talks of U.N. action but it is the U.K. and France that introduce the resolution, not the United States. It will not recall the U.S. ambassador who was so foolishly dispatched to Damascus late last year.

Two weeks ago, al Jazeera turned against Assad and is doing what it did in Egypt — broadcasting whatever it can get its hands on about the brutality of the regime and the courage of the protesters.  The Amir of Qatar owns the station.

Syria is closely allied with Shia Iran, and with Hamas and Hezbollah, but the Syrian population is 74 percent Sunni. If the Alawite regime were to fall, it would be widely interpreted as a step toward the fall of the ayatollahs, so what happens in Syria is hugely important for American interests in the region.  The president is, um, testing the wind, thinking about sanctions. He could recall our ambassador. He could pressure Turkey very hard to distance itself from the regime.  He did say that Mubarak and Quaddafi must step down, he hasn’t even suggested that Bashar should.

He did issue a travelers’ warning.



The Biggest Fool of All by American Elephant
April 5, 2011, 2:08 pm
Filed under: Humor, Liberalism, Politics, Progressivism | Tags: , , ,

The GOP ran this snarky little parody on April Fool’s Day, billing it as Obama’s first campaign ad. Alas, April Fool’s is gone and past and Obama remains the biggest fool at last.

Update: Turns out the GOP’s parody of Obama has gotten far more views (as of this writing over 815,000), than has Obama’s actual campaign launch video (just over 265,000). Heh. Heh. Heh.

As Ben Smith at Politico notes, “YouTube’s metrics tend to lag a bit, but the numbers suggest that — energy-wise — we’re in 2010, not 2008.”



Don’t Let Obama & His Corrupt Union Bosses Stand in the Way of Recovery Any Longer by American Elephant
February 28, 2011, 4:11 pm
Filed under: Democrat Corruption, Economy, News, Politics, Taxes | Tags: , , ,



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