June 16, 2009

If You Call Obama “Socialist,” Then the House GOP Is 99% Socialist


TheNextRight.com buzz Pipe

If You Call Obama "Socialist," Then the House GOP Is 99% Socialist

Posted: 16 Jun 2009 01:59 PM PDT

 Cato's Chris Edwards is correct.  Republicans are playing small-ball.  They have no real vision, so they've ended up with policy paralysis.  - Jon Henke

As I note in a recent New York Post op-ed Republicans are fond of implying that President Obama is a big-spending socialist. But the House GOP recently offered a spending cut plan that was able to find savings worth less than one percent of Obama's budget.

As Tad DeHaven and Brian Riedl have also pointed out, the GOP spending reform effort is rather pathetic. It proposed specific annual budget cuts of about $14 billion per year.

Consider that the center-left budget wonks at the Brookings Institution put their heads together a few years ago and came up with a "smaller government plan" that proposed about $342 billion in annual spending cuts (by 2014). The Brookings authors note:  

These cuts are achieved by reducing government subsidies to commercial activities ($138 billion); by returning responsibility for education, housing, training, environmental, and law enforcement programs to the states ($123 billion) . . . by cutting entitlements such as Medicaid, Social Security, and Medicare ($74 billion); and by eliminating some wasteful spending in these entitlement programs ($7 billion).

Thus, the Brookings scholars found cuts more than twenty times larger than the House GOP leadership cuts, and Brookings proposed its plan back when the deficit was about one-fifth of the size it is today. (Note that both the Brookings and GOP plans would also put a cap on overall nondefense discretionary spending, in addition to these specific cuts).

My point in the New York Post piece is that the GOP needs to challenge Obama's big spending agenda at a more fundamental level. They need to do some careful research, pick out some big spending targets, and go on the offense. Why not propose to eliminate the Departments of Education and Housing and Urban Development? Why not sell off federal assets, such as the Tennessee Valley Authority, in order to help pay down the federal debt? Why not open up the U.S. Postal Service to competition?

Obama won't agree to these reforms at this point, but they would hopefully open a serious national debate about reforming our massive and sprawling federal government. Ronald Reagan in 1980 and the congressional Republicans in 1994 didn't win by splitting hairs with the Democrats over 1% of spending. They offered a more fundamental critique.

At least, GOP leaders need to offer up spending reforms as bold as those of the Brookings Institution.

Chris Edwards is the director of tax policy studies at The Cato Institute

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2009 Supplemental Bribery: Part 2

Posted: 16 Jun 2009 12:00 PM PDT

The legislative bribery happening over the 2009 Supplemental Appropriations bill (mentioned a few days ago) is ramping up. Democrats are pairing politically unpopular items together with the more essential items and outright earmark bribery in order to get the whole thing passed.  And now, the White House is "turning to vulnerable Republicans and telling them he can get the DCCC to "go easy" on them next year if they vote for the Supplemental tomorrow. And Eric Cantor's office is really pissed."

Sources tell me Republicans will make this vote a campaign issue for Democrats in 2010 (details below).

This puts some of the Democrats in a very difficult position (See Red State for more on that), and some of them are gradually deciding to vote no on the legislation. There is bipartisan resistance to this bill, and Jane Hamsher is doing a good job whipping the vote over at Firedoglake.  She has the current whip summary here

Most importantly, Hamsher notes that "Blue Dogs are scared about what might happen in conservative districts if they cast that vote for a $100 billion European bank bailout."

I can confirm that.  Earlier today, I asked a senior Republican campaign operative in Washington, DC about this bill,  I was told that, yes, "Republicans will be watching how these Members vote on the War Supplemental", and it "will be a campaign issue" for many Democrats. 

I was given a list of names they're watching closely, as well.  Suffice it to say that Congressional Democrats are going to have to sever the elements of this supplemental and vote on them individually, or else they will be handing their opponents some very potent ammunition for 2010.

A vote is not far off.   Phone calls help.  Red State has a list of legislators you can call.

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If You Call Obama "Socialist," Then the House GOP Is 99% Socialist

Clouds exert a strong influence on the Earth's energy balance

Clouds exert a strong influence on the Earth's energy balance; changes of only a few per cent have an important effect on the climate.


CLOUD – Cosmics Leaving OUtdoor Droplets


Cosmic rays and cloud formation

CLOUD is an experiment that uses a cloud chamber to study the possible link between galactic cosmic rays and cloud formation. Based at the Proton Synchrotron at CERN, this is the first time a high-energy physics accelerator has been used to study atmospheric and climate science; the results could greatly modify our understanding of clouds and climate.

Cosmic rays are charged particles that bombard the Earth's atmosphere from outer space. Studies suggest they may have an influence on the amount of cloud cover through the formation of new aerosols (tiny particles suspended in the air that seed cloud droplets). This is supported by satellite measurements, which show a possible correlation between cosmic-ray intensity and the amount of low cloud cover. Clouds exert a strong influence on the Earth's energy balance; changes of only a few per cent have an important effect on the climate. Understanding the underlying microphysics in controlled laboratory conditions is a key to unravelling the connection between cosmic rays and clouds.

The CLOUD experiment involves an interdisciplinary team of scientists from 18 institutes in 9 countries, comprised of atmospheric physicists, solar physicists, and cosmic-ray and particle physicists. The PS provides an artificial source of 'cosmic rays' that simulates natural conditions as closely as possible. A beam of particles is sent into a reaction chamber and its effects on aerosol production are recorded and analysed.

The initial stage of the experiment uses a prototype detector, but the full CLOUD experiment will include an advanced cloud chamber and a reactor chamber, equipped with a wide range of external instrumentation to monitor and analyse their contents. The temperature and pressure conditions anywhere in the atmosphere can be re-created within the chambers, and all experimental conditions can be controlled and measured, including the 'cosmic ray' intensity and the contents of the chambers.


Clouds exert a strong influence on the Earth's energy balance; changes of only a few per cent have an important effect on the climate.

Global Warming/Cooling not CO2 related, but is to Star Dust

The article below explains how global climate change is not related to CO2, which is the life substance to planetary life.  Research is pointing to the amount of sunspots having effect on our outer atmosphere which causes more or less clouds to form in our lower atmosphere which either blocks or lets the heat of the sun reach the planet.
Carbon is our friend, not our enemy.  Those who continue to push a carbon cap and trade policy are not our friend, they are our enemy.
R. George Dunn
Trouble on the Horizon for Wheat


James Anderson 

Jun 16, 2009 8:35 am

...This project is known as CLOUD (Cosmics Leaving Outdoor Droplets), which is designed to investigate the possible influence of galactic cosmic particles on Earth's clouds and climate. The CLOUD experiment is based on the original research of a Danish Physicist named Hedrick Svensmark.
Svensmark and his colleagues published a paper in 2006 that described the results of an experiment that duplicated the conditions of the lower atmosphere when the upper atmosphere was bombarded with particles.
They discovered that certain particles from cosmic particle collisions higher in the atmosphere travel to the lower atmosphere and release electrons that catalyze the formation of cloud condensation nuclei. Water vapor molecules coalesce on these nuclei to start a cloud droplet. Thus, more cosmic particles increase cloud formation, which has a cooling effect on the Earth.

If cosmic particles control variations in clouds, what does this have to do with sunspots? That answer is fairly straight forward. When the sun is active, meaning that there are lots of sunspots, the eruption of charged particles increases the strength of the sun's
magnetic field. Since cosmic particles are charged particles, they are deflected by the stronger magnetic field AWAY from the Earth.
Thus, more sunspots cause fewer particles get to Earth, fewer clouds are formed, and the Earth warms up. With fewer sunspots more cosmic particles reach Earth, producing more clouds and the Earth cools. Simple, elegant, not manmade, doesn't involve CO2 in any way, and it makes Al Gore sad; talk about a winning theory!...
CLOUD – Cosmics Leaving Outdoor Droplets
Carbon is our friend,  not our enemy.  Those who continue to push a carbon cap and trade policy are not our friend, they are our enemy.