From The Detroit News
GM Stock Dive Not Good News for US Taxpayers!
While most people associate General Motors with its bailout by the U.S. government, the company remains what it has always been – a global manufacturing giant that is as exposed to the vagaries of the business cycle overseas as it is in North America.
Troubles in the Eurozone have hit GM’s business hard, driving its stock down to the $19 level, the lowest it has been since its post-bankruptcy IPO in November 2010.
GM’s stock price is a matter of some interest to American taxpayers, as the federal government still owns 32% of the carmaker, and needs a price of $53 per share to break even. The feds would lose about $17 billion if they tried to dispose of their holdings at current prices.
As the late and revered Senator Dirksen might observe, “a billion here and a billion there, and it adds up to real money!”
(Las Vegas, NV) – Today seven-term Congresswoman Shelley Berkley voted against the Red Tape Reduction and Small Business Job Creation Act, a bill supported by both Republicans and Democrats that would put a stop to the government’s ever-increasing burden on businesses and the economy.
“Seven-term Congresswoman Shelley Berkley is once again clinging to big-government, federal regulations. She even opposed an effort to make it easier for Nevada and our nation’s businesses to hire. Congresswoman Berkley’s support for the trillion dollar stimulus, ObamaCare and the Wall Street bailout are enough proof of what happens when government takes the lead,” said Chandler Smith, Heller for Senate spokeswoman.
The Red Tape Reduction and Small Business Job Creation Act is comprised of seven measures that would ease federal regulations. These regulations would impact energy prices for Nevada families, as well important industries in Nevada like mining, ranching, and energy production. The bill also includes legislation that would prevent a lame-duck president from imposing new rules between the election and Jan. 20; increases transparency and judicial scrutiny of sue-and-settle decrees and settlements; requires the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to assess the cost of proposed rules before they are issued; amends the Commodity Exchange Act (CEA) to require the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) to conduct cost-benefit analysis prior to creating a rule; and requires Congress to acquire more complete information about the effects of such mandates.
A recent Gallup poll showed that 46 percent of small business owners are not hiring because they are worried about new government regulations. As many as 48 percent say they are worried about the potential costs of health care. (“Health Costs, Gov’t Regulations Curb Small Business Hiring,” Gallup, February 15, 2012)
Followed Nancy Pelosi and President Obama, Shelley Berkley followed the party-line to force federal regulations to skyrocket.
· The Obama administration adopted 106 major regulations in its first three years (Tray Smith, “Economically Significant Regulations On the Rise Under Obama,” Heritage.org, July 2012)
· Total cost of regulatory burdens since 2012 is $48.9 billion.
· Pages of regulations in the Federal Register so far this year: 36,114.
(Red Tape Review, Republican Policy Committee, June 15, 2012)
Heller Announces Coalition of 140+ Veterans
Servicemembers Rally behind Dean Heller for U.S. Senate
(Las Vegas, NV) – Today Dean Heller announced a coalition of more than 140 veterans who have joined the Heller for Senate team. These men and women will work to elect Dean Heller in the coming months.
“I’m humbled by the support of so many of our nation’s heroes. We can never repay these individuals for their service, but it is Congress’ responsibility to make sure those who have served in the Armed Forces receive the benefits they earned and deserve. I look forward to working together with these patriots in the coming months as we move toward victory in November. These men, women and their families have sacrificed so much on our behalf, which is why I am committed to continuing to serve them in the United States Senate,” said Dean Heller.
Dean Heller has established a long record of supporting veterans. Most recently, he introduced the Women’s Homeless Veterans Act. This legislation requires the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to set aside 15 percent of funds provided to VA’s Grant and Per Diem Program for homeless veterans with special needs. It also directs assistance to homeless female veterans as well as children. Dean also introduced the Veterans Small Business Protection Act in July, which ensures that surviving spouses and children are eligible for small business benefits
These former and retired military men and women, and members of the military community, have all joined the Veterans for Heller coalition:
|Jim Akers, USN||Glen Larsen, USMC|
|John Algeo, USMC||Adam Laxalt, USN|
|George Allison, USA||Darryl Lewis, USAF|
|Clemens Altherr, USN||LTC Ron Lewis, USA (ret)|
|CG Andress, USN||CDR Kirk Lippold, USN (ret)|
|LTC William Anton, USA (ret)||Thomas Livoti, USN|
|Herbert Barrett, USAF||CW4 Gregg Lubbe, USA (ret)|
|Col Michael Bartley, USAF (ret)||Neil Ludvigson, USAF|
|Tom Blanchard, USN||Col Sanford Mangold, USAF (ret)|
|LtCol Richard Bowen, USMC (ret)||James Maples, USA|
|Tom Boyd, USN||Virgil Massey, USA|
|Tom Brennan, USA||Thomas Mayo, USA|
|State Senator Greg Brower, USN||Fred McDougal, USA|
|Joe Brown, USN||Paul McGrath, USMC|
|Aaron Burnett, USAF||Vet Wife Margaret McIsaac|
|Kenneth Burrows, USA||Ralph McMullen, Nevada Air National Guard|
|MAJ H. “Treat” Cafferata, USA (ret)||Hugh McWatters, USMC|
|RADM John Calvert, USN (ret)||John McMullen, USN|
|Maj John Cappel, USAF (ret)||Kyle Meintzer, USAF|
|Donald Carney, USN||SCPO Greg Mink, USN (ret)|
|Sparks City Councilman CDR Mike Carrigan, USN (ret)||COL Marvin Moss, USA (ret)|
|CPT David Chamberlain, USA (ret)||Lt Col Patrick Murphy, USAF (ret)|
|MSgt Ernest Chivers, USAF (ret)||Shawn Nirdlinger, USMC|
|Gordon Clare, USN||Louis Novak, USA|
|Maj Gen Drennan “Tony” Clark, USAF (ret)||Col Dan O’Donnell, USAF (ret)|
|CAPT Jim Clark, USN (ret)||CAPT Carl Oldenburg, USN (ret)|
|Dr. Tyrus W. Cobb (COL-USA/Ret)||Robert Orman, USMC|
|Robert Coe, USN||LTC Henry Osterhoudt, USA (ret)|
|Rick Crain, USA||Gage Parrish, USAF|
|Carter Dalke, USAF||ET Paulus, USAF|
|PJ Degross, Founder of Web of Support||Darrell Paye, USAF|
|John Delaberta, USAF||CAPT Phil Perine, USN (ret)|
|Dennis Dice, USAF||CDR Alan Power, USN (ret)|
|COL John DiGrazia, USA (ret)||Bobby Proctor, USA|
|Ronald Duntley, USN||David Regan, USAF|
|Chris Edwards, USN||Roger Reimer, USA|
|CDR Carol Evans, USN (ret)||Robert Reinheimer, USA|
|Col William Eveland, USAF (ret)||Clarence Rindfleisch, USN|
|Joel Fairfield, USA||SSgt Dan Rivers, USAF (ret)|
|SCPO James Falk, USN (ret)||LtCol George Rivers, USMC (ret)|
|Edward Falkenstein, USA||William Robbins, USMC|
|Col Bob Frank, USAF (ret)||Donald Robinson, USN|
|Darrell Fowler, USN||Ernest Robles, USA|
|Col Mark Foxwell, USAF (ret)||Mert Rumford, USA|
|SGM Don Gable, USA (ret)||LTC Steven Saterlie, USA (ret)|
|Washoe County District Attorney MAJ Dick Gammick, USA (ret)||Ernie Schoch, USAF|
|COL Dee Garder, USA (ret)||Col Patrick Sheets, USAF (ret)|
|Maj Bob Garlow, USAF (ret)||Eric Skinner, USAF|
|Brian Gaskill, USAF||Patt Solorzano, USAF|
|Lt Col Larry Geist, USAF (ret)||1st VP of Women’s Auxiliary Patricia Spagnolo|
|Salvador Gurgiolo, USA||Maj Herb Steege, USAF (ret)|
|Danny Hafelfinger, USN||Vet Wife Mary Stevens|
|Howard Harris, USA||LTC Dennis Tallant, USA (ret)|
|Martin Heiner, USA||SMSgt David Talley, USAF (ret)|
|LTC Al Hendley, USA (ret)||Terry Tavernetti, USN|
|CMSgt Robert Hiltz, USAF (ret)||Jeffrey Tino, USAF|
|Fred Horlacher, USA||Frank Titus, USN|
|James Howerton, USAF||Lt Col Victor Thomas, USAF (ret)|
|LTC William Jamieson, USA (ret)||Norman Tornek, USAF|
|Vern Jaquish, USN||William Vardoulis, USAF|
|Jerry Johnson, USAF||Nelson Velazquez, USAF|
|Maj Gen LD Johnson, USAF (ret)||Lt Col Gail Vogel, USAF (ret)|
|Robert Kaufmann, USMC||Danny Waldrop, USN|
|Richard Kerzetski, USA||CAPT Leo Walsh, USN (ret)|
|CDR Robert Kessler, USN (ret)||George Weller, USN|
|Maj Gen Cindy Kirkland, USAF (ret)||Howard Wick, USN|
|Assemblyman Randy Kirner, USA||Richard Willey, USN|
|COL Kenneth Kleine, USA (ret)||Thomas Williams, USA|
|Kurt Kolbe, USN Reserves||Harvey Wool, USA|
|CAPT Gary Kornish, USCG (ret)||Robert Zaniewski, USAF|
|Barry Lagan, USA National Guard||James Zimbleman, USAF|
|Sheila Lanzel, USAF|
WASHINGTON, D.C.: A book published and translated by the mother of Obama administration State Department Deputy Chief of Staff Huma Abedin provides fresh evidence that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s closest aide has deeply problematic foreign associations that could, in violation of departmental guidelines, “create… a heightened risk of foreign exploitation, inducement, manipulation, pressure, or coercion.”
In light of the escalating controversy over the role being played in U.S. security policy-making by Ms. Abedin and others with personal and/or professional ties to the Muslim Brotherhood (see Part 8 of the Center for Security Policy’s online curriculum at MuslimBrotherhoodinAmerica.com), the revelations contained in a new Center report– Ties That Bind? The Views and Agenda of Huma Abedin’s Islamist Mother– could not be more timely, or important.
The Center’s report excerpts and analyzes relevant passages from a book published and translated by Saleha S. Mahmood Abedin called Women in Islam: A Discourse in Rights and Obligations by Fatima Umar Naseef. Naseef is a past head of the “women’s section” and professor of shariah at King Abdulaziz University in Jeddah, where Dr. Abedin is also on the faculty. The book was published in 1999, the same year Dr. Abedin founded Dar Al Hekma, a university for women also in Jeddah, that Secretary Clinton visited and spoke admiringly of with Huma Abedin in February 2010. [See Remarks on that occasion by Mrs. Clinton, including her comment that Huma holds a "very sensitive and important position" in her department, and those by her hosts.]
Excerpts from Women in Islam in Ties That Bind? The Views and Agenda of Huma Abedin’s Islamist Motherinclude Islamic shariah justifications for the following practices:[list type="arrow"] [li]
- Stoning for Adultery when Married; Lashing for Adultery when Unmarried
- No Death Penalty for the Murder of an Apostate
- Freedom of Expression Curtailed to What Benefits Islam
- Women’s Right to Participate in Armed Jihad
- Social Interaction Between the Sexes is Forbidden
- Women Have No Right to Abstain from Sex with their Husbands
- A Woman Should Not Let Anyone Into the House Unless Approved by Her Husband
- Female Genital Mutilation is Allowed
- Man-Made Laws “Enslave Women”
The organization responsible for the publication of Women in Islam was the International Islamic Committee for Woman & Child (IICWC), chaired at the time by Dr. Abedin. IICWC misleadingly describes itself as “an international organization of concerned women who are committed to improving the condition of women and children around the world.” In fact, like the Muslim Brotherhood, the Muslim World League (MWL) and other Islamist organizations with which it is associated, the IICWC is committed to eviscerating the rights of women and children by imposing everywhere shariah, a code that denies them fundamental – and, in the United States, constitutional – liberties.
Specifically, the book published by Dr. Abedin wholeheartedly affirms: limits on women’s free expression; the permissibility of stoning as a punishment for adultery, killing of apostates and female genital mutilation; the contention that “man-made laws” enslave women; and more. It also endorses women’s right to fight in armed jihad. Women in Islam is available online and sold at the Institute for Muslim Minority Affairs, an Islamist organization co-founded by Huma Abedin’s mother and her late father, Dr. Syed Zainul Abedin.
On July 21, former federal prosecutor Andrew C. McCarthy posted an essay at National Review Online that should be required reading for everyone commenting on the request by five Members of Congress led by Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota for Inspector General investigations of Muslim Brotherhood influence operations within the U.S. government. In it, he observed that the Institute for Muslim Minority Affairs “was backed by the Muslim World League. As the Hudson Institute’s Zeyno Baran relates, the MWL was started by the Saudi government in 1962 ‘with Brotherhood members in key leadership positions.’ It has served as the principal vehicle for the propagation of Islamic supremacism by the Saudis and the Brotherhood.”
Mr. McCarthy notes that:
The five House conservatives…are asking questions that adults responsible for national security should feel obliged to ask: In light of Ms. Abedin’s family history, is she someone who ought to have a security clearance, particularly one that would give her access to top-secret information about the Brotherhood? Is she, furthermore, someone who may be sympathetic to aspects of the Brotherhood’s agenda, such that Americans ought to be concerned that she is helping shape American foreign policy?
Andrew McCarthy, who successfully prosecuted the Blind Sheikh, Omar Abdul Rahman – a convicted terrorist and clerical inspiration for jihadists worldwide, whose release from federal prison at the insistence of Muslim Brother and Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi has been the subject of discussions within and enabled by Mrs. Clinton’s State Department – goes on to observe that:
The State Department is particularly wary when it comes to the category of ‘foreign influence‘ – yes, it is a significant enough concern to warrant its own extensive category in background investigations. No criminal behavior need be shown to deny a security clearance; access to classified information is not a right, and reasonable fear of “divided loyalties” is more than sufficient for a clearance to be denied. The [Department's own security] guidelines probe ties to foreign countries and organizations because hostile elements could “target United States citizens to obtain protected information” or could be “associated with a risk of terrorism.” Note: The Brotherhood checks both these boxes.
Frank J. Gaffney, Jr., President of the Center for Security Policy, said upon the release of the Center’s new report, Ties That Bind? The Views and Agenda of Huma Abedin’s Islamist Mother:
In the interest of informing the debate about the need to investigate Huma Abedin’s ties to the Muslim Brotherhood and its agenda, and those of others shaping policy in the Obama administration, the Center for Security Policy offers in Ties That Bind? further cause for such an investigation. That includes, for instance, evidence of Dr. Saleha Abedin’s personal involvement with the International Islamic Committee on Woman and Child’s affiliated organization, the International Islamic Council for Da’wah and Relief (IICDR). The IICDR was banned in Israel in 2008 for its collaboration with Muslim Brotherhood cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi‘s Union for Good in the funding of the Muslim Brotherhood terrorist organization, Hamas. In the United States, the Union for Good was designated a terrorist entity in late 2008.
This further documentation of Dr. Abedin’s positions on shariah law, her leadership of the IICWC and its affiliation with a designated terrorist entity such as the IICDR makes plain that a thorough investigation is fully justified regarding her daughter’s access to classified information and policy-influencing role. In particular, in connection with the latter, Ties That Bind powerfully reinforces the Center’s earlier warning that the IICWC is currently advocating for the repeal of Egypt’s Mubarak-era prohibitions on female genital mutilation, child marriage, and marital rape, on the grounds that such prohibitions run counter to shariah. Americans want no part of such an agenda. They should they have reason for concern that senior officials in their government are stealthily encouraging it.
Full report below:
Originally posted at Center for Security Policy | Jul 22, 2012
About the Center for Security Policy
The Center for Security Policy is a non-profit, non-partisan national security organization that specializes in identifying policies, actions, and resource needs that are vital to American security and then ensures that such issues are the subject of both focused, principled examination and effective action by recognized policy experts, appropriate officials, opinion leaders, and the general public.
The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) released its monthly report today on U.S. home prices in May, based on its House Price Index (HPI) for houses financed or guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. According to the FHFA, home prices increased in May by 0.8% from April to an index level of 188.06, which was the highest level for home prices since August 2010 (see top chart above). The April-May increase in the HPI was the fourth back-to-back monthly price increase starting in February, and was the largest four-month increase in home prices (3.47%) since the fall of 2005.
By Chuck Muth
Nevada U.S. Sen. Dean Heller took to the floor of the Senate yesterday and had a thing or two to say about tax hikes:
“President Obama said in 2009 – quote – ‘You don’t raise taxes in a recession… because that would just suck up, take more demand out of the economy and put businesses in a further hole.’ I agreed with that statement in 2009, and I agree with it today. … My home state of Nevada leads the nation in unemployment at 11.6 percent. … Raising taxes will do nothing to create jobs in Nevada or this nation.”
Darn straight, Skippy! And yet…
The Nevada Legislature, with plenty of Republican accomplices, “temporarily” raised taxes in the neighborhood of $800 million dollars – over the objections and vetoes of then-Gov. Jim Gibbons – during the height of the recession in 2009.
That same Nevada Legislature, again with plenty of GOP accomplices, re-imposed $620 million worth of those “temporary” taxes – most of which hit Nevada job creators – in collaboration with Gov. Brian Sandoval in 2011 during the ongoing recession and while Nevada was leading the nation in unemployment.
Then just this past March – as Nevada continued to lead the nation in unemployment – Gov. Sandoval announced he was going to once again re-impose that $620 million worth of “temporary” tax hikes on Nevada’s job creators next year despite the fact that, as Sen. Heller pointed out, “raising taxes will do nothing to create jobs in Nevada.”
Now, some liberals in the media would have you believe that it’s only radical right-wingers like me, the tea partiers, the Ron Paulbarians and our good friends over at the Nevada Policy Research Institute (NPRI) who believe that raising taxes, especially during this seemingly never-ending recession, is bad policy and won’t help create jobs in Nevada.
But the truth is, our position is the responsible, mainstream conservative position…and thank you Sen. Heller for sticking to your guns and sticking up for Nevada’s taxpayers and job creators!
While Sen. Heller opened his remarks by quoting President Obama from 2009, let me close with a far more eloquent quote from gaming executive Steve Wynn, also from 2009:
“This is a time – anybody that raises any taxes now is purely psychotic. I mean, every time they touch a tax now you can just increase the unemployment line at the Culinary Union and at every place else in this city. No, no. This is a bad time to raise taxes.”
Darn straight, Skippy!
Fiscal conservatives agreed with that statement in 2009, and we agree with it today. Perhaps Gov. Sandoval might rethink the wisdom of again re-imposing that $620 million “temporary” tax hike next year and join the rest of us mainstreamers.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Chuck Muth is president of CitizenOutreach.com and founder of CampaignDoctor.com. He blogs at MuthsTruths.com
Two key polls that are sure to keep national Democratic strategists awake at night. As Politico reports, Democratic voter enthusiasm is lower than it has been in the past two presidential election cycles, according to a new Gallup poll released Wednesday. Only 39 percent of Democrats say they are more enthusiastic about voting than usual, down from 61 percent in 2008 and 68 percent in 2004. Meanwhile, Republican enthusiasm has rebounded to where it stood in 2004: 51 percent said that they were more enthusiastic than usual to be voting in this election. In 2008, only 35 percent of Republicans felt the same way.
- The poll also finds – Business owners resoundingly oppose President Barack Obama’s policies, with nearly 60 percent disapproving of his job performance. Fifty-nine percent of business owners said they disapprove of Obama’s job performance, compared with 35 percent who said they approve. Their approval of the president has fallen from 41 percent in the first quarter to 35 percent in the second quarter of 2012, a drop of 6 points. This puts business owners with the second-lowest approval in terms of occupational groups measured by Gallup.
And in case you missed it, NRSC Chairman John Cornyn was on Fox News this morning discussing yesterday’s Senate vote that put every 2012 incumbent Democrat on record supporting a massive tax hike. Key excerpt:
- HOST: Do you think in the tight Senate races you forced them to show their hand on this vote?
SEN. CORNYN: I do, absolutely. I’m actually very surprised that Senator Reid would throw his members under the bus on this vote which he knew was not going to go anywhere but which has caused them to have to side with higher taxes on small business, which I think is a very tough thing to explain back home.
In Nevada, National Journal’s Hotline reports that Crossroads GPS is up with a new ad highlighting Shelley Berkley’s ongoing ethics investigation. The group will spend $451,000 for a week of advertising labeling Rep. Shelley Berkley (D-Nev) “everything that’s wrong with Washington,” highlighting the ongoing House ethics committee investigation that will be a cornerstone of Republican attacks on Berkley’s record.
- Meanwhile, the Las Vegas Sun reports that the NRSC is making Harry Reid a focal point in their campaign messaging. Harry Reid may not be up for re-election this year, but next to President Barack Obama, there’s no politician in the country with more to lose in 2012. The Nevada senator’s majority leadership is anything but a sure thing as Democrats and Republicans dig in to battle over the longest roster of truly competitive seats up for grabs since 2006, when the body made a sharp shift from red to blue. … “Senator Reid is the symbol of everything that’s been wrong with Congress,” said Brian Walsh, communications director for the NRSC, which has made Reid a focal point in their campaign literature and messaging in many of the toss-up states. “It’s Harry Reid and President Obama that have been in charge in Washington.”
McConnell: ‘They’re Not Even Pretending To Care About The Economy’
SEN. MITCH McCONNELL: “They’re not even pretending to care about the economy. They’ve sort of given up on the argument that this is about the economy. We know that because two years ago the Democrats agreed that this tax increase, they’re now fighting to increase — two years ago they agreed it would hurt the economy. So let’s look at the economy then and the economy now. At a time when economic growth was 3.5 percent back in December of 2010, 40 Democrats over here voted to keep rates where they were on the grounds that it was the best thing to do for jobs. December 2010, 40 Democrats voted to keep tax rates where they were because it was the best thing for jobs. Yet now, when the growth rate is 2 percent — 3.5 percent then, 2 percent now — and 13 million Americans are still out of work, they’re voting to slam nearly a million businesses with a tax increase. Now, maybe they’re expecting the GDP numbers tomorrow to be 3.5 percent. We’ll see.” (Sen. Mitch McConnell, Floor Remarks, 7/26/12)
Today’s Economy Weaker Than When Obama Extended All Tax Rates
2010 Economic Growth: 3.5%
Real GDP growth over the four quarters before Dec. 2010 tax rate extension: 3.5%
2012 Economic Growth: 2.0%
Real GDP growth over the previous four quarters: 2.0%
In 2010, Obama Said Tax Increases ‘Would Have Been A Blow To Our Economy’
PRESIDENT OBAMA: “…tax rates for every American were poised to automatically increase on January 1st… would have been a blow to our economy just as we’re climbing out of a devastating recession.” (President Obama, Remarks At Bill Signing, 12/17/10)
· OBAMA: “If we allow these taxes to go up, the result would be that a lot of people most likely would spend less, and that means that the economy would grow less.” (President Obama, Remarks, Kokomo, IN, 11/23/10)
· OBAMA: “You don’t raise taxes in a recession.” (“Obama: We Must ‘Help Elkhart Reinvent Itself,’” MSNBC, 8/5/09; Video Here)
40 Current Senate Democrats Voted To Extend Current Tax Rates In 2010: Akaka (D-HI), Baucus (D-MT), Begich (D-AK), Bennet (D-CO), Boxer (D-CA), Brown (D-OH), Cantwell (D-WA), Cardin (D-MD), Carper (D-DE), Casey (D-PA), Conrad (D-ND), Coons (D-DE), Durbin (D-IL), Feinstein (D-CA), Franken (D-MN), Inouye (D-HI), Johnson (D-SD), Kerry (D-MA), Klobuchar (D-MN), Kohl (D-WI), Landrieu (D-LA), Lieberman (ID-CT), Manchin (D-WV), McCaskill (D-MO), Menendez (D-NJ), Mikulski (D-MD), Murray (D-WA), Nelson (D-FL), Nelson (D-NE), Pryor (D-AR), Reed (D-RI), Reid (D-NV), Rockefeller (D-WV), Schumer (D-NY), Shaheen (D-NH), Stabenow (D-MI), Tester (D-MT), Warner (D-VA), Webb (D-VA), Whitehouse (D-RI). (H.R. 4853, Roll Call Vote #276, Motion Agreed To 81-19: R 36-5, D 44-13, I 1-1, 12/15/10)