Week in Review

President Obama: You aren’t successful because you had ingenuity and worked hard, government helped you.

(The White House) — There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me — because they want to give something back.  They know they didn’t — look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own.  You didn’t get there on your own.  I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart.  There are a lot of smart people out there.  It must be because I worked harder than everybody else.  Let me tell you something — there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there.  (Applause.)

If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help.  There was a great teacher somewhere in your life.  Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive.  Somebody invested in roads and bridges.  If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that.  Somebody else made that happen.  The Internet didn’t get invented on its own.  Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet.

Obama continues to believe people are wealthy due to luck and government assistance.  Just ask Julia.

Judge orders back pay for minorities who failed entrance exam

(CNSNews) — Nicholas G. Garaufis, a Clinton-appointed judge for the Eastern District of New York, issued a rulingthat requires two of every five newly hired fireman to be black and one  of every five, Hispanic — until the department has fulfilled the  court-ordered quota of 186 black and 107 Hispanic hires.

The ruling allows back pay — totaling an estimated $128.7 million — for minorities who failed written tests.

The court order is a response to a lawsuit alleging that two  placement exams (Written Exams 7029 or 2043) for the FDNY were  discriminatory against blacks and Hispanics, because fewer minorities  passed the exam than whites.  (See copies of the exams here.)

[…]

Judge Garanufis ruled that any black or Hispanic individual who  failed either written exam with a score of 25 out of 100 or higher is  eligible to receive place on the priority hiring list as well as  damages, including “non-economic damages.”

Non-economic damages are intended to compensate for the “lost  intangible benefits of being a firefighter.”  The intangible benefits  include “prestige, job satisfaction, camaraderie, unique excitement,  enjoyment of flexible scheduling, unusual employment stability, feeling  of security derived from retiring with a full pension and lifetime  medical benefits, and the potential for career advancement.”

[…]

Further, Judge Garanufis ruled that minorities who were not hired  because they failed the entrance exams must be paid a “retroactively  higher salary” and receive “retroactive seniority” once they are hired  through the new quota system. Retroactive seniority affects accrual of  vacation and sick leave, among other benefits.

Can someone please, I’m practically begging here, tell me how a written exam is racist and discriminatory?  If one is to argue that the test is too difficult to understand, aren’t you in essence saying minorities are inherently less intelligent than whites?

Yet another difference between Democrats and Republicans

(Boston Herald) — In a veto statement yesterday, Patrick slammed his reform-intent rivals for “political grandstanding” with their efforts to ban EBT buys of guns, porn, tattoos, jewelry and manicures, insisting reforms were already on track without the Legislature’s meddling. That drew return fire from irate lawmakers.

[…]

While signing the state’s $32.5 billion budget yesterday, Patrick rejected an outside section containing the welfare benefits card reforms that had been hammered out with bi-partisan support in the House and Senate — an effort spearheaded by House Speaker Robert DeLeo (D-Winthrop).

[…]

The proposed ban on EBT use in jewelry stores, nail salons and rental centers was vetoed, however, leaving no EBT ban on their products.

State Rep. Shaunna O’Connell (R-Taunton) said, “These benefits are for the necessities of life. Not for jewelry, not for manicures, not to get a makeover.”

No comment really needed is there.

Pro-Choicers to begin to further obfuscate the abortion issue:

(Huffington Post) — Here’s what progressives need to do: Never use the Cells Are People metaphor, even in arguing against conservative policy. Never use the term baby or unborn child to refer to a blastocyst, embryo, or fetus.

Stop using the term abortion. It has misleading properties. When we speak of “aborting a mission,” the mission was intentional and planned, and the original idea was to bring it to an end state. What happens with an unwelcome pregnancy is nothing like this. The pregnancy was not intentional, not planned, and there was never any intention of bringing it to an end state. Rather, what is desired is development prevention, keeping any development from happening. That development can be prevented at many stages, from unfertilized cells (via morning-after pills), to blastocyst to embryo, from embryo to fetus, from fetus to a non-fully-formed-human, to an unviable human (one that can’t live outside the womb). The earlier the development prevention, the better for the woman.

Never use the expression partial birth abortion. It’s a conservative political tool, not a medical reality. Here’s the Texas GOP in its 2012 platform: “We oppose partial birth abortion.” The term was invented by a hired, conservative language professional. The image is grisly, and that was the point. But no such thing exists. The medical condition it is supposed to represent is one where a potential child cannot survive, either because it has no brain, or because of some other equally awful condition. And usually, the mother’s life is at risk. This has nothing to do with either giving birth or with more common reasons for preventing development.

[…]

The reason not to use the above language is that it can both hide reality and does not adequately communicate the moral values that underlie progressive policy. The right to limit development is a matter of liberty and family freedom. [emphasis in original]

Don’t be surprised if you begin to hear the term “development prevention” as a euphemism for abortion.  This is not to make things more clear, but obviously less clear (See: Get A Life, Part 1). Given the fact that America is becoming more pro-life, a new terminology is needed to get customers in the Planned Parenthood doors.  Apparently, women are making too many choices to keep their babies, and we can’t be having that now can we.

Comments

  1. Obama never did anything to get where he is except to be a puppet.

    The judge in New York should be fired and hung. The whole idea of quotas is racist and discriminatory against whites. If you aren’t qualified, it doesn’t matter what color you are. Back in the mid 1970s Columbus had the same problem: it seem the percentage of black policemen did not equal the percentage of blacks in Columbus, so the city could hire only black officers until the numbers were equal in proportion! Of course the fact that fewer blacks applied for the job didn’t matter to the judge, nor did it matter that of those who did apply many were not qualified. Racist quotas were all that mattered. I was a white victim of this discrimination. I had just gotten my helicopter rating and wanted to work with the police department in their aviation section, but was told they couldn’t hire me because of the judge’s order.

    Liberals are insane.

    • But what about whites who failed, what do we do for them? I just don’t like the institution of affirmative action. People should be judged on their merits and abilities.

      I really am desperate to know how a written exam discriminates against minorities though.

  2. Marshall Art says:

    The pro-baby killers are, like leftists like to do, altering definitions. To abort a mission has nothing to do with the mission being planned (otherwise it wouldn’t be a mission), but halting or eliminating something that exists. What are they aborting? The mission. What do P-BKs abort? A human being. In kind, what would they be preventing from developing? Again, a human being.

    Note also their description of a partial birth abortion. Like the “hired, conservative language professional” (I’d like to know this guy’s name) has described, the birth is not complete but in the process with the child partially exited the birth canal. Then, the shameless person speaking suggests it is performed for reasons including that the child has no brain. But sucking out the brain in order to collapse the skull is not uncommon in these procedures as I understand it.

    Like lefties pushing other agenda items, they must alter realities in order to make their case work. This piece shows their intention on dehumanizing the child being put to death in order to legitimize their selfish ends. Shameful is a word that just doesn’t go far enough.

  3. If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges.

    What is there to disagree with in this comment? Of course, no one makes it on their own. Of course, businesses benefit by having an educated workforce and roads to get their products out/in.

    I am certain the point Obama was making was NOT “You did nothing to make your business successful…,” he’s just pointing out the reality that it wasn’t done alone.

    That’s just a factual statement that no rational business person would/could disagree with. My boss would certainly affirm the statement.

    • Hey Dan

      Thought you abandoned me here. Its not surprising that you and Obama both miss something key. The government gets its money to build the roads from taxpayers who earn their money from the fruits on their intellectual and manual labor. People who start contracting and paving companies and those who build and invent the machines and techniques must exist prior to the government using them.

  4. I’m confused here. I was under the impression that those govt. services were paid for by ALL taxpayers. So, it seems like the folks P-BO wants to minimize have been paying for their share of this stuff anyway. Further, if you accept P-BO’s premise then the successfull enterprenours taxes are simply funding infrastructure for future enterprenours, then they’re just paying it forward anyway.

    Of course we wouldn’t want to give these folks actual credit for anything, before we try to take more of thier money, would we?

    • That’s an excellent point Craig,

      The entrepreneurs are driving on their own roads. Taxpayers are earners, earners build the economy, builders of the economy create.

  5. The government gets its money to build the roads from taxpayers who earn their money from the fruits on their intellectual and manual labor.

    As I said (echoing what Obama said), they did not do it on their own. It was our joint efforts by pooling our joint resources. If any business owner wants to claim to be a totally self-made person, then they can pay for ALL the roads, educators, schools, fire departments, police departments, inspectors, etc, THEN they can make that claim. Until then, no one is an island unto themselves.

    I know of no business people (except maybe for some delusionally egotistical ones) who would claim otherwise. It’s just the way it is. What am I missing?

    Or, put another way, answer this question: NAME ONE business that has done everything themselves and has wholly and completely only themselves responsible for their success.

    Failing that, perhaps we can set aside this non-point and just agree to the reality that we’re all in this together?

  6. Since NO ONE has actually made the claim that Dan (and P-BO) allege, it seems that this whole conversation is silly. In fact these folks DO pay for a portion (probably a disproportionate portion) of the things that we all use. The question then becomes did 6 billion people by i phones because of roads, or did they buy i phones because Steve Jobs (and others) developed a product that was significantly better (or at least better marketed) than their competition.

    While we’re apparently taking P-Bo’s words as gospel, if there are really people who WANT to contribute more than they currently do, what’s stopping them? Why is P-BO flying around the country raising money for his re election? Shouldn’t he be encouraging these folks who WANT to give more to give to the common good, not to further his selfish ambition?

  7. ? I’m making the claim that no one rational is making that claim.

    It appears, then, that we all agree: None of us totally succeed on our own. We all have many benefits from those who’ve gone on before and our fellow citizens. It would be irrational to claim otherwise.

    We all agree. Bueno!

  8. You (and P-BO) make the claim that there are people claiming that they have succeeded completely on their own. Yet no one is making that claim. So from that you decide that we agree.

    It must be nice to be able to change reality to suit your fancy.

    • Craig, you really need to quit telling people what they said, especially when they never said it. A recap:

      Obama said that no one makes it on their own. This is a self-evident, obvious real-world circumstance. He didn’t claim that someone said it, rather, he was pointing out a truth (in a GOP climate that seems to continually denigrate taxes and investing our collective moneys in needed Stuff).

      I asked, What is there to disagree with? This statement of Obama’s is factually and obviously true. What’s to debate? It’s a self-evident, obvious real-world circumstance. I, like Obama, did not claim that anyone was making the claim that they succeeding completely on their own. Look at the words.

      You agreed with Obama’s statement (the one which I affirmed and which is obviously factual). We all agree, what’s the problem?

      We may disagree on how much certain people ought to contribute to pay their way into our commonwealth, but we all agree, it can’t be done on your own.

      Who are you arguing with?

  9. Maybe the better question is, since no one is suggesting that anyone “made it on their own” nor is anyone suggesting that taxes be abolished, who are you and P-BO responding to. Isn’t that pretty much the classical definition of a straw man. You and P-BO attack some nonexistent person for something they didn’t say and wonder why people take exception.

    Either that or you you just missed the point. Apple isn’t as successful as it is today because of the government. It’s successful because of superior products and/or marketing. Which as I understand it is primarily due to Steve Jobs (and a team of other individuals).

    I do, however, see what you’ve done here. You’ve taken and isolated a tiny part of a disturbing speech and by casting this one tiny part as innocuous you can ignore the broader implication of the speech and the attitude it represents. If you read the quote above it is quite clear that P-BO is trying to overstate the contribution that government makes to individual success. It is quite clear that he (and apparently you) believe that intelligence, hard work and other individual factors pale in importance next to the contribution of government.

    I guess, I shouldn’t hold my breath waiting for an answer to my question.

    • is anyone suggesting that taxes be abolished, who are you and P-BO responding to.

      Answered already…

      He didn’t claim that someone said it, rather, he was pointing out a truth (in a GOP climate that seems to continually denigrate taxes and investing our collective moneys in needed Stuff).

      Have you missed the news about the “Tea Party…” wing of the GOP? Rand Paul, et al?

      Or you can see who is being addressed in Obama’s quote…

      You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something — there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there.

      He begins by saying he knows plenty of wealthy people – business people – who WANT to give back, to invest in our commonwealth because a healthy commonwealth is what contributed to THEIR success. Obama then goes on to say – not of ALL rich people, but of a particular mindset – “I got here all on my own, becuz I was smart, because I worked hard…”

      Or, as YOU JUST said….

      Either that or you you just missed the point. Apple isn’t as successful as it is today because of the government.

      In PART, they got where they are because of a good product, but IN PART they got where they are because of our common infrastructure paid for by our common giving. Obama is responding to folk (like you just said, above) who leave out our common contributions to business development. You seem to want to, on one hand, agree that no one makes it on their own, AND YET at the same time, turn around and say, “they aren’t as successful as they are because of the gov’t…” Which is it? The rational, “they didn’t do it on their own, there had to be some infrastructure in place…” or “they were successful NOT because of the gov’t…”?

  10. “He didn’t claim that someone said it, rather, he was pointing out a truth (in a GOP climate that seems to continually denigrate taxes and investing our collective moneys in needed Stuff).”

    Again, I have heard no one in the GOP( I’m sure that you can drum up some obscure or out of context quote to “make your point”, the problem is that no one in the GOP is seriously advocating eliminating taxes or eliminating public inferastructure) denigrate taxes nor investing our monies in needed Stuff. I have heard many on both sides question the amount of taxes and what actually constitutes “needed” Stuff. This is a fairly significant difference and again a straw man.

    “He begins by saying he knows plenty of wealthy people – business people – who WANT to give back, to invest in our commonwealth because a healthy commonwealth is what contributed to THEIR success.”

    Assuming this to be the case, what is stopping them? I am aware of now law that says they MUST take every available tax deduction and loophole that is available to them. I am also unaware of anything that would prevent them from paying additional taxes to asuage their guilt feelings. The fact is they DON’T. Why is that? Do they not have the courage? Do they need someone else to tell them what to do?

    It’s interesting that many of these rich folks actually do choose to give back fifancially and in many cases in pretty significant ways. The problem with P-BO’s premise is that they CHOOSE to do it through other means than the govt. Why do they do that, instead of pay more taxes?

    “Obama is responding to folk (like you just said, above) who leave out our common contributions to business ”

    That’s great, except I have NEVER heard anyone of these folks actually speak in public, who are they, where are the quotes?

    “In PART, they got where they are because of a good product, …”

    Define “in PART”. What percentage of Apples success is due to the quality of their products? Or put another way, if the i phone was crap how many would they have sold sue to the excellent highway system? Oh and what governmental entity has primary responsibility for inferastructure, Federal? No not so much? Oh and what tax pays primarily for highways and roads? The tax that P-BO wants to raise? No not so much. I’m quite sure Rochester has great inferastructure, yet Polaroid is going away despite the largesse of the feds.

    Look, the fact that P-BO feels the need to denigrate (and you to blindly parrot his denegration) those in our society who have achieved significant success speaks volumes about his philosophy.

    I know you haven’t answered my original question to you, I also know that I have asked a number of additional questions of you. If you wish to continue this “conversation” , pray do me the courtesy of answering the questions that are asked. I know how much this irritates you when your questions go unanswered, and I would hope that this would make you more cognizent of extending a similar courtesy to others. I am quite sure that this is merely an oversight and the you will be providing detailed answers soon. For that I thank you in advance.

  11. John,

    I’m sure that you will probably have something to say about the shootings in CO at some point but I thought I’d share this.

    As I was driving around today I thought it would be instructive to see what was being said on the failed remains of Air America (speaking of successful buisness ventures). The best comment I heard was “F*** the second amendment”. Classy.

  12. Marshall Art says:

    Limited time forces me to jump in without reading all comments. Forgive me if I cover something already addressed.

    The idea of “I built this” in regards to one’s “empire” is absolutely sound, even if few people actually say such things. “Help” is usually people who are hired or contracted to perform tasks at the behest of the “builder”. This isn’t the same as help in the classical sense, that one person volunteers to help the other build his empire. The role of gov’t in any of it is peripheral at best, especially considering gov’t’s penchant for interference. Roads get built by the people through gov’t which acts on their behalf. But more basically, people with needs and people with solutions to those needs work to the personal benefit of each by their actions that lead to the creation of roads. IF no roads existed, and there were no gov’t programs for building them, entrepreneurs would build them themselves to get their goods and services where there is a need for them.

  13. Marshall,

    Well said. I believe that you could successfully argue that anything build through government for the common good is a direct result of someone’s self interest. It seems reasonable that any infrastructure spending necessarily comes as a response to some private entity establishing or trying to establish something. That’s why you very rarely see roads and utilities that run nowhere.

  14. “Obama’s infrastructure argument is easily refuted by what is essentially a controlled social experiment. Roads and schools are the constant. What’s variable is the energy, enterprise, risk-taking, hard work and genius of the individual. It is therefore precisely those individual characteristics, not the communal utilities, that account for the different outcomes. ”
    -Charles Krauthammer H/T Douglas Groothuis

    As a said earlier. The roads and schools are still in Rochester, Polaroid is going, going, gone.

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