Update: Ross Kaminsky has a great column at Human Events explaining this in more depth.
In case you haven’t figured it out yet, and are wondering what’s the main reason why our nation is in the financial mess it’s in, take 9 minutes of your life to watch this:
Barack Obama and the Democrats have been given way too much of a free pass on this issue. And their House leader Nancy Pelosi doesn’t seem too serious about solving the problem either. If Americans elect these people into power, we get what we deserve. Just don’t punish the rest of us — wake up before you cast your vote!
Even as Ritter announced his opposition, Amendment 46 backers complained his administration had used state resources to campaign against the measure, which would be a violation of state law.
Ritter denied that. But later, his director of economic development, Don Elliman, acknowledged his office had used state time to invite people to a Sept. 22 forum on Amendment 46, which featured a well-known opponent of such measures, but no one who supported them.
“We blew it,” Elliman said. “It would appear from the wording on the invitation that we were taking a position. The governor can take a position, but that doesn’t mean we can spend state money and time on it.”
Apparently state officials are looking for a way to make up for the transgression of the state’s Fair Campaign Practices Act. Citizens need to hold their feet to the fire, and ask themselves why the governor is lining up special interest groups to oppose equal rights.
You’re invited to tune in this Thursday evening (7:00 PM local Mountain time) for a group liveblog of the vice-presidential debate. Members of the Rocky Mountain Alliance and Peoples Press Collective are coming together to give you their on-the-spot responses and insights as Joe Biden and Sarah Palin duke it out on national television.
You can come here to follow along and even add your (moderated) comments. Others who have agreed to participate in the group liveblog so far are: Thinking Right, Rocky Mountain Right, and Drunkablog. I’ll notify you if more bloggers agree to participate.
One thing that’s clear is the Congressional bailout debates have shifted political fault lines in unusual ways. The Denver Posthighlights the odd split in Colorado’s Congressional delegation: Mark Udall, John Salazar, Doug Lamborn, and Marilyn Musgrave against the bill vs. Tom Tancredo, Diana Degette, and Ed Perlmutter for it.
Overall, it’s not a pretty picture–but score one for supporters of the free market who insist on allowing market reorganization of the financial sector to continue unimpeded…albeit at high risk to the economy over the next few months.
Of course, Cato is more purely libertarian than Heritage. But it makes just another interesting observation in this messy debate in Congress that is far more about the people vs. political powerbrokers both Republican and Democrat than it is about good vs. bad policy. So far, I’ve seen no good way out of this situation. Just like many of our elections, we have to look to embrace the lesser of two evils.
Kudos for those with the courage to stand up for freedom, to stop Congress from dumping billions of dollars in bad debt on the backs of taxpayers.
It prevents state and local governments from collecting dues for labor unions or other groups that use such funds to elect or lobby the very public officials who hire them and set their salaries and benefits.
It’s a modest but important ethical rule that will help keep partisan politics, with its echo of the 19th century “spoils system,” out of the merit systems that regulate most state and local government jobs.
We usually don’t agree with the Independence Institute’s Jon Caldara, who’s pushing this measure, on, well, anything. Let this be a first. [emphasis added]
Do you remember in Friday’s presidential debate where the Obamessiah had his little “me too” moment, and showed off the deceased soldier’s bracelet given for him to wear? Well, to his credit, Warner Todd Huston at Newsbusters dug a little deeper and found that the family asked Barack Obama not to wear the bracelet:
[Father Brian] Jopek began by saying that his ex-wife was taken aback, even upset, that Obama has made the death of her son a campaign issue. Jopek says his wife gave Obama the bracelet because “she just wanted Mr. Obama to know Ryan’s name.” Jopek went on to say that “she wasn’t looking to turn it into a big media event” and “just wanted it to be something between Barack Obama and herself.” Apparently, they were all shocked it became such a big deal.
Apparently, Mrs. Jopek is conflicted, wanting Obama to take off the bracelet, but feeling conflicted because she wants Obama to win the election. There’s a lot of pain, difficulty, and complexity to the story behind Barack’s “me too” debate moment. But it appears that all would be best served if he quietly complied with the family’s wishes and ceased making an issue out of this brave soldier’s death.
The People’s Press Collective documents the latest misleading campaign flyer from Protect Colorado’s Culture of Corruption Future, noting: “You wonâ€™t be surprised that theyâ€™re still abusing Coloradoâ€™s real heroes as puppets for their elaborate LIES.”
Indeed. At this point, I’m not sure how low the opponents of good government and worker freedom would have to go to take me by surprise. The campaign isn’t over yet, though.
To his credit, State Rep. Cory Gardner is spearheading a grassroots effort to support public charter schools and the families they serve. Recently the Adams 12 school board unanimously decided to support legislation unfriendly to charter schools (see Resolution 1.3). Adams 12 effectively wants to beef up its own authority to deny charters, to limit parents’ authority to appeal rejected charter school applications, and to undercut charter schools’ already sub-par funding.
But Cory Gardner (R-Yuma), a rising star in the GOP, took the initiative to craft a letter alerting charter school parents and supporters to the attack and urging them to get involved in the fight. In all, 17 Republican state representatives and 9 Republican state senators signed their names to the letter. I know there are Democratic charter school supporters out there, too. Let’s see how many of them get involved as well.
This presidential election year, more than any in recent history, is calling for Republican volunteers to get in the game here in Colorado. The race between John McCain-Sarah Palin on one hand and the not-so-dynamic duo of the Obamessiah and Slow Joe Biden on the other is calling you to get involved.
There are a dozen Colorado “victory centers” – meaning, probably one very near you – where you can get involved. Maybe I’ll see you on the trail this Saturday.
Locations and contact information below the fold: (more…)
A timeout during the heated election to write: If there’s one issue showing true bipartisan momentum in the interest of the public good, it’s financial transparency in government. Expect the issue to be up front during Colorado’s 2009 legislative session. For now, you can read a Denver Post op-ed co-authored by my Independence Institute colleagues Amy Oliver and Stephanie Kubala.
Check it out, and see where the transparency issue has taken hold already, and what promise it holds for Colorado.
If the history of government intervention in this country has taught us anything, it’s that we should be much more afraid of the long term ramifications of the government rushing through an emergency “solution” to a problem than the actual problem the government is trying to “solve” in the first place.
Agreed. In that spirit, the Heritage Foundation has an excellent piece urging Congress to live up to its “deliberative” role in this debate.
Meanwhile, Rossputin has recanted his initial tentative support of the administration’s $700 billion bailout plan, writing:
[Federal Reserve Chairman Ben] Bernanke is warning us that doing nothing poses serious risks to the economy. Indeed, I believe that’s true. But doing this bailout and doing nothing can’t be our only two choices.
On this question, I say we should again look to the Heritage Foundation, which correctly urges Congressional lawmakers to seek the following goals:
Don’t prop up failed institutions
No price supports
Don’t allow the government to become permanent “owner of last resort”
Limit legislation to the immediate need and don’t let it become a Christmas tree of special interest goodies
Avoid (or at least limit as much as possible) “moral hazard”
Carefully define the Federal Reserve’s role as “lender of last resort”
Limit taxpayer exposure and keep actions temporary
Assure market liquidity but make sure insurance prices reflect market risk
These are good principles to judge any Congressional action by. The choices aren’t between the Paulson Plan and nothing. As a general rule, government intervention is to be avoided, but as the Heritage report wisely points out:
But there can be rare situations in which a wave of bad decisions in one sector has such dire consequences for the most basic operations of the economy that other sectors are threatened, jeopardizing the functioning of the entire economy. We are in such a situation. And in these rare cases another principle comes into play: Government institutions have a critical role in helping to assure the integrity of the marketâ€™s infrastructure, from the sanctity of contracts to the liquidity of the financial markets. When government fails to carry out this role in critical times, such as its failure to maintain liquidity after the stock market crash of 1929, the results can be catastrophic. As economist Milton Friedman explained, the failure of the Federal Reserve to maintain liquidity and functioning credit markets helped trigger and deepen the Great Depression.
Let’s just make sure it’s done right — and with Congress in charge of seeing it done right, I don’t have much hope or confidence. That’s where I am right now.
“There’s nothing exactly covering union dues, union this or union anything,” says Colorado Springs voter Todd Landsborough. “You know what’s interesting, is this thing right here, you can put that in the garbage can. I mean it’s totally misleading.”…
“I’ll probably go online and write them a letter, â€˜I think you guys are phony as hell,’” says [Colorado Springs voter Andy] Colon.
Give the average voter the facts, and he’ll recognize the special interest groups’ deception for what it is. And he might just react angrily, too.
I think Colorado’s Democratic powerhouses behind Amendment 59 need to get on the same page. It was only last month that State Treasurer Cary Kennedy was overheard saying that Amendment 59 will “drive a stake in the heart” of the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights.
In yesterday’s Denver Post, however, outgoing House Speaker Andrew Romanoff sought to argue that under Amendment 59 “‘the heart’ of TABOR â€” that all tax increases must have voter approval â€” would be preserved.”