American Elephants


When Democrat Policies Fail, They Switch to Race-Baiting. by The Elephant's Child

It’s not just the EEOC. Obama’s new credit watchdog agency The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), is criminalizing debt collections by arguing they have a “disparate impact” on black Americans.

CFPB chief Robert Cordray says he’s coming up with new rules to crack down on creditors and third-party debt collectors who “hound” black borrowers more frequently than white ones.  “We will not tolerate companies harassing consumers in the debt collection market,” Cordray warned. He promised black church leaders that he would seek “economic justice” for blacks who have fallen into debt and come under the thumb of bill collectors and other “financial predators..”

The agency solicited more than 30,000 complaints that allegedly prove that creditors are abusing debtors. But they just took borrowers’ word that they don’t owe what they owe. A recent federal study shows more than 96% of such complaints are “frivolous.”

The Federal Trade Commission’s 2013 study found that only 3.2% of consumer debt is legitimately disputed. In the meantime, the agency is helping deadbeats to get out of paying their debts by posting samples of letter they can send to creditors to tell them to bug off.

Redistributing wealth by letting debtors and deadbeats off the hook for their debts is not helpful for the economy, for blacks, or for the national polity.

The biracial Barack Obama presented himself in 2008 as the presidential candidate who would show us the way to national unity. No more red America and no blue America. He was going to fix it. Seemed like a good idea at the time, but like everything else, he didn’t mean it. Now Democratic control of the Senate is threatened, and it’s time to revert to the tried and true tactic of race-baiting.  Only politicians act as if the whole world is centered on race, class and sex. Class envy and racial demagoguery.

When Democrat policies fall, Democrats fall back on race as the issue. They have such a miserable history with race, but it does get annoying when they try to claim that Republicans —Republicans! are segregationists. Excuse me. Despite Democratic myth-making, Lincoln was a Republican. The slave holders in the South were Democrats, the KKK was a Democratic organization. The Dixiecrats were Democrats. Bull Connor was a Democrat. The Republicans were abolitionists. The Republican Party was founded as a party of abolition, and has remained so.



Is Chris Matthews a Racist? by The Elephant's Child

Chris Matthews has managed to make news in the last few days, by being grateful for Hurricane Sandy because it would help Obama’s election chances. He did apologize partly, by insisting that he wasn’t talking about all the damage, just about the opportunity it gave to Obama to appear presidential. That improves anything?

Mr. Matthews is a prime exemplar of one who has slipped over from politics as the search for good government, to politics as religion, or politics as a belief system. We also found him on Tuesday night during MSNBC’s election coverage, predicting that President Obama would lose the South because of Mitt Romney’s racially charged campaign, and he wasn’t sure that Virginia was Southern enough to swing Romney’s way:

I’ve watched the appeals made by people on the Republican side –- the right-wing side, in some cases -– people like, sort of, screwball people making comments about race. I really think you’re going to see at the end of the night, when we look at the popular vote, when we look at how it’s broken out by region, the president will do well in the Northeast, the Midwest and the West. He’s going to do very poorly in the South among white voters.

According to Matthews, white voters in the South aren’t voting against Obama because of the bad job he has done over the last four years, but because they, like all Republicans — are racists.

May I say that I’m getting a little tired of this. If a racist is defined as someone who is obsessed by race, then Chris Matthews is the biggest racist around. Democrats have such a dreadful history with race, that they have a lot to overcome, and thus have considered race to be the greatest problem in the country. Mr. Matthews apparently believes that race is the sole reason to vote for Barack Obama to be  president and the only reason he should be reelected.

I believe that Barack Obama has been an extremely bad president, and that he didn’t deserve to be reelected because of his record of spending, his failures with the economy, his excessive regulation, his record on foreign policy, his record on ObamaCare, his record on energy, and his record on promoting useless “alternative energy.  As far as I can determine, his race has had nothing to do with any of these policies. To the contrary, his policies have been far more harmful to blacks and Hispanics than to anyone else.

The end point of racism is not minority dominance, it is not reparations.  It is, and can be only indifference. That’s what Martin Luther King was talking about, except that he referred to “the content of their character.” Exactly. But to their race, the color of their skin, their ethnic heritage — indifference. Don’t care.

Because Democrats care so much about race, they gerrymander voting districts to be sure that black candidates have majority-black districts. Why is that necessary? It was a whole bunch of white people that elected Barack Obama in the first place.

In the South of the slavery days, white women wore bonnets, long sleeves and gloves in 100° weather, and carried parasols to protect themselves from the sun and keep their skin white and unfreckled. Today, they toast in the sun, go to tanning salons, and buy tons of tanning cremes to darken their skin. When is the last time you heard someone get a compliment on their beautiful white skin?

“Hispanic” is not a race, nor is “Latina”, both terms refer to the use of the Spanish language, except for Brazilians who speak Portuguese. People from the Caribbean islands may be black, but speak French. Far more African slaves were transported to the Sugar Islands than to America, and far more went to South America.

“Asian” is not a race either. There are lots of countries of vastly different ethnicities that compose the Asian designation that have nothing in common with each other, and in many cases detest each other.

I am troubled each year by the political division of people into voting blocks. An enormous amount of trouble flows from those divisions, much of it from the media. We will all continue to notice obvious physical racial designations, but I have quit filling out government forms asking me to designate my race. I’m apparently not alone, as there is now a blank for “refuses to designate.”

I find it fascinating that Democrats are so deeply involved in issues of race, but refuse to recognize that our most essential rights are derived from the simple fact that we are human beings endowed with the only rights that can be guaranteed, by our Creator.

 



Class Warfare: How the Game is Played! by The Elephant's Child

President Obama can’t let go of the executive jet theme.  He must regard an executive jet as a fat cat accessory that will really offend ordinary folk.  The left is deeply invested in “equality” and most of their policies are designed, in theory, to make people more equal — except, of course for those bright, dedicated, incorruptible people in government who will decide — everything.

A corporate jet is meant to get executives to corporate meetings, corporate locations with as little wasted time as possible. Yes, they are expensive.  Corporate executives’ time is expensive. Attacking corporate jets is attacking an important American industry which employs thousands of Americans. Guess who gets hurt? Not the executives, but the people who design, build and sell airplanes, who face layoffs, lost sales, a damaged industry.

The left maintains that inequality in the U.S. has increased dramatically in recent decades.  Since 1979, they claim, only those at the top have seen their income rise significantly.  Thirty-six percent of all after-tax gains went to the most affluent 1% of the population.  Over 20% of those gains went to the top thousandth (0.1%)of the income distribution. Thus, they say, Economic inequality in the U.S. is now greater than at any time since the beginning of the Great Depression.

Why is this important? The poor have not been getting any poorer. Zero remains zero, if the poor earn no income.  The definition of the poor has changed, because the government “poverty line” below which one is “poor” keeps being raised to include more people. So although more people may now be considered “poor” their situation is not getting worse.  We have all sorts of programs to make sure that the poor don’t have to live poor, and statistics show us that they don’t. The poor are not poor because the rich are rich.

More importantly, the poor, over time, are not the same people. Young people, going out on their own for the first time are usually poor, share living quarters and work in beginning jobs. Over time, they move up. The rich also are not the same people over time. You can check that out on Forbes‘ annual list of the richest people in the country and in the world. People move in and out of the list quite regularly.

At the upper end of the income distribution, you have Bill Gates, and Steve Jobs, and many others. Has the definition of “the rich” changed since 1979?  Oh yeah!  Bill Gates and Steve Jobs (and a lot of others) labored in a new industry that went from strange little machines that only geeks were interested in, to putting computers into most homes, offices, schools, stores and laps. They were in the right place at the right time with the right ideas. Some people are lucky and skillful enough to bring all three elements together.

That has happened many times, over and over in history. The fact that some people get rich doesn’t deprive anyone else. They usually create a lot more wealth for others.  There is not a money pie wherein if one person gets a bigger slice— everyone else gets cheated. When growth like that happens, the economy expands. We’ve had oil barons, cattle barons, railroad barons, movie moguls, rock stars, and on and on. There are new things out there waiting to be invented that will make other people rich.  Are we supposed to hate anyone who becomes rich through his own efforts or his own luck?  Why?

Wealth and poverty are the result of choices: hard work, persistence, determination, education and luck. If a young person graduates from high school, waits to get married until after they have graduated from high school, and waits to have a child until after they have married, in general, they will do alright.

A new study from the Pew Research Center trumpets a new wealth gap between Whites, Blacks and Hispanics.  “The median wealth of white households is 20 times the median wealth of black households and 18 times that of Hispanic households.”  Call this playing politics with statistics.  A “median” number is just the number in the middle, not an average.

The collapse of the housing market and the recession took a far greater toll on blacks and Hispanics than on whites. Much of the housing bubble was caused by government policies that encouraged minorities to buy homes that under normal prudent rules of lending, they would not have been able to afford. Most of the wealth of blacks and Hispanics was in their home equity, and they were hit hard.

The study is based on an economic survey distributed by the Census Bureau that compiles data about household wealth by race and ethnicity.  Plummeting home values were the principal cause of the erosion in wealth among all groups, with Hispanics the hardest hit. A disproportionate number of Hispanics were located in California, Florida, Nevada and Arizona, states hardest  hit by the decline in housing values. Blacks and Hispanics have also been harder hit by unemployment numbers in manufacturing and construction.

Expect this study to make political  headlines across the country.  A president who is already anxious to  campaign on class warfare and the race card will not be able to resist.

A growing economy would change the picture.  How do we get a growing economy? Stop wasteful government spending, and remove the regulation and uncertainty that are hamstringing business.

Set them free.




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