Columnist: Conservatives Must Not Let Media Pick The Candidate
Douglas MacKinnon warns conservatives what happens when they compromise on a political candidate. (Hint: Someone like Barack Obama is elected president)
From his column in Investor's Business Daily:
Leaving aside the televised, overly scripted, predictable and marginally useful "debates" now taking place between the Republican candidates for president, there are much more important discussions going on between conservatives and independents who are unified in their belief that for the good of the nation, Barack Obama must be defeated.
Those discussions — taking place across kitchen tables, in lunchrooms, or in neighborhood bars after a week of hard work — are trying to determine which path to follow in the approaching political fork in the road.
One of those paths will most likely lead to the defeat of Mr. Obama. The other could very well ensure his re-election.
It is critical for Republicans, conservatives, and independents to remember that from the 2008 GOP field, John McCain had the stamp of approval from the mainstream media.
In fact, the liberal media worked overtime to resurrect his then all but comatose campaign. Why?
That same liberal media told us that independents and a good number of Democrats just loved McCain.
Notorious bank robber Willie Sutton once was asked, "Why do you rob banks?"
He had a straight-forward answer: "Because that's where the money is."
Fast-forward to 2011 and you could ask your favorite public servant, "Why do you run for office?"
The answer? "Because that's where the money is."
USA Today has published a scathing look at how politicians milk the system to collect millions in pensions.
In many cases, the politicians have qualified for benefits at the state level while moving on to higher office at the federal level, where they will once again reap the financial rewards of "public service."
From USA Today:
More than 4,100 legislators in 33 states are positioned to benefit from special retirement laws that they and their predecessors have enacted to boost their pensions by up to $100,000 a year, a USA TODAY investigation found. Even as legislators cut basic state services and slash benefits for police, teachers and other workers, they have preserved pension laws that grant themselves perks unavailable to voters they serve or workers they direct.
Pennsylvania politicians are among the worst offenders, according to the investigation.
From USA Today:
Since 1996, 67 retired Pennsylvania legislators have collected $7 million in pension checks that they could not have received if they' had the same retirement age as most state workers, USA TODAY found. Another 40 who took early retirement also benefited from the younger retirement age.
Those benefiting include seven former state legislators now in Congress, earning $174,000: Democrats Chaka Fattah and Allyson Schwartz and Republicans Charlie Dent, Jim Gerlach, Tim Murphy, Todd Platts and Joseph Pitts.
Lowman Henry has a Newsmaker interview with State Rep. Curt Schroder of Chester County on reforming the state's casino gaming system; Joe Geiger of the Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations has Bets McManus of Leadership Cumberland in the Nonprofit Spotlight; And, Scott Paterno has an Uncomfortable Truthcommentary on the role of money and consultants in political campaigns.
Investor's Business Daily on Obama's failed presidency:
Whether it's jobs, economic growth, energy prices, incomes, regulation, weak foreign policy, or the quality of our lives and the nation's social fabric, America's current course looks questionable at best.
No wonder the markets are so volatile. They discount not the present, but the future. And the future for investors is murky at best and downright dark at worst.
America's Best Haunted Attractions Are Both In Pennsylvania
Just in time for Halloween, Hauntdworld.com has released its 2011 list of the Top 13 Best Haunted Attractions in the United States.
And topping the list? A pair of haunted attractions in suburban Philadelphia: The Bates Motel and Pennhurst Asylum, both operated by the same company.
Here's what Hauntdworld.com has to say about the best haunts in the U.S.:
1. Bates Motel & Haunted Hayride and Pennhurst Asylum Haunted Attraction in Philadelphia, PA Pennsylvania: The Bates Motel Haunted House & Hayride is a unique haunted attraction for several reasons: The Haunted Hayride is located deep in a 200-year-old forest full of overgrown trees creating the ultimate dark trail even during a full moon. This puts customers on edge even before ever entering the first hayride scene. Combined with a digital custom soundtrack, pyrotechnics and continuous scares throughout the ride, this hayride attraction is sure to create the ultimate haunting experience of your life! To read a more detailed article about this attraction, visit their website at www.TheBatesMotel.com. Additionally, The Pennhurst Asylum is one of the scariest haunted attraction sites in the world, mostly due to the setting of this haunt. It's located in a 100-year-old, abandoned mental institute. The building itself will instill real fear and true horror in anyone. The Asylum has been investigated by professional ghost hunters and featured on Ghost Adventures and Ghost Hunters several times. This attraction is truly haunted. To read a more detailed article about this real haunted house visit their website at www.PennhurstAsylum.com. Bates Motel and Pennhurst Asylum are owned and operated by the same company and are within a short drive of each other. These have to be number one on our list for locations to get scared this Halloween.
Dinniman: Why all the secrecy on Route 422 toll plan?
Pennsylvania State Sen. Andy Dinniman, D-19th Dist., has some concerns about a proposal to toll Route 422 in SE Pennsylvania:
From an op-ed published in The Pottstown Mercury:
Pennsylvanians have a right to an honest, open debate on the issue. Unfortunately, such honesty and openness is questioned when the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission refuses to share information and then gives two conflicting answers as to why. Whether one is for or against the tolling proposal — and I am opposed to it — access to information is crucial to any public-policy debate.
Josh Shapiro: Such An Easy Question, Why Can't I Get An Answer?
Watching this video of Democrat Josh Shapiro dodge a simple question about taxes and spending doesn't instill a lot of confidence in the Democratic candidates for Montgomery County Commissioner. And is Shapiro's running mate allowed to speak?
Pennsylvania lawmakers and Gov. Tom Corbett want to change how Pennsylvania awards its delegates to presidential candidates. Republicans say it's a more fair way to pick a president and would give a greater voice to rural voters. Democrats say the plan is intended to erase their strongholds in major cities.
Check out this interesting analysis at National Journal on how the 2008 presidential race would have been different if all states changed the way they award delegates.
The media, which is supposed to be a watchdog for government corruption, instead has turned into a lapdog for Barack Obama, helping his administration cover-up on of the biggest scandals in U.S. history.
George F. Will on Obama's unwillingness to admit his polices have been a complete failure:
For two years, there has been one constant: As events have refuted the Obama administration's certitudes, it has retained its insufferable knowingness. It knew that the stimulus would hold unemployment below 8 percent. Oops. Unemployment has been at least 9 percent in 26 of the 30 months since the stimulus was passed. Michael Boskin of Stanford says that even if one charitably accepts the administration's self-serving estimate of jobs "created or saved" by the stimulus, each job cost $280,000 — five times America's median pay.
Columnist: Obama's Solyndra scandal reeks of the Chicago Way
Columnist John Kass is not surprised by the latest scandal enveloping the Obama White House:
"The Solyndra scandal cost at least a half-billion public dollars. It is plaguing President Barack Obama. And it's being billed as a Washington story.
But back in Obama's political hometown, those of us familiar with the Chicago Way can see something else in Solyndra — something that the Washington crowd calls "optics." In fact, it's not just a Washington saga — it has all the elements of a Chicago City Hall story, except with more zeros."
Democrat Congressman: Gov't Has No Obligation to Pay Social Security Benefits
Let me see if I get this straight. The federal government takes money out of your paycheck each week, promises to keep it safe in a "lock box" until you're ready to retire, but this Democrat says there's no guarantee you'll ever see that money. Sure sounds like a Ponzi Scheme to me. And Democrats keep pretending that Republicans are the ones who want to cut Social Security. The Democrats have already raided the "lock box." There's nothing there.
Pennsylvania Republicans are looking for a viable candidate to challenge liberal Bob Casey Jr. for one of the state's two U.S. Senate seats in 2012.
Casey has made no impact in Washington over the past five years and his blind obedience to the failed Barack Obama-Harry Reid agenda could be costly with voters who are fed up with incompetence in D.C.
While political newcomers David Christian and Steve Welch want to take on Casey, GOP officials would rather see one of two Southeastern Pennsylvania House members enter the Senate race.
Republican moderates Jim Gerlach and Charlie Dent are proven vote-getters and could pose a serious problem for Casey. Even first-term House member Patrick Meehan, a former U.S. Attorney, could knock off Casey, whose entire political career has been based on his father's name and his unwillingness to take a position on any important issues.
Those kind of feckless politicians are out-of-style in Washington.
Gov. Tom Corbett has signed his 8th execution warrant since taking office in January, but death penalty advocates know it's a waste of time. No death row inmate has been executed in Pennsylvania since 1999.
'Waiting for ‘Superman' Screening, Panel Discussion at Albright College on Sept. 25
The acclaimed documentary film 'Waiting for 'Superman' will be shown for free on Sunday, Sept. 25, at Albright College in Reading, PA, followed by a panel discussion on the American education system.
The film begins at 5:15 p.m. in Klein Lecture Hall, followed by the panel discussion at 7:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.
The panel will be Louis Shucker, an attorney in private practice and a school board member, and Thomas Beveridge, a retired elementary principal from Pottsville, Pa., who supports charter schools. Joseph Yarworth, Ph.D., chair and assistant professor of education at Albright, will serve as moderator.
26 Organizations Call for Resumption of Yucca Mountain Review
One man - Sen. Harry Reid - is preventing the opening of a safe place to deposit the nation's nuclear waste. Reid's arrogance has cost taxpayers billions of dollars and has raised safety issues because spent fuel rods are being stored in populated areas instead of the underground depository in Nevada. A Republican majority in the Senate would end Reid's tyranny.
Investor's Business Daily on the repudiation of Barack Obama's presidency by voters in New York and Nevada in special elections held Tuesday:
Rebellion: The safest of Democratic congressional seats in the citadel of liberalism has gone conservative Republican. But it just continues the remarkable trend that began when voters realized the mistake they made in 2008.
Republicans won two Congressional seats in special elections Tuesday that were billed as referendums on Barack Obama's failed presidency. Not a good sign for Democrats as they continue to follow Obama over a cliff.
The big blow to the Democrats was the loss of the New York Congressional seat held by former Rep. Anthony Weiner, which had been in Democratic hands since 1922.
A federal judge in Pennsylvania is the latest to strike down the key provision in the Obamacare bill forcing citizens to purchase health insurance.
From Judge Christopher C. Conner's ruling:
"The nation undoubtably faces a health care crisis. Scores of individuals are uninsured and the costs to all citizens are measurable and significant. The federal government, however, is one of limited enumerated powers, and Congress's efforts to remedy the ailing health care and health insurance markets must fit squarely within the boundaries of those powers."
An event designed to recognize first responders in Berks and Montgomery counties has been rescheduled because so many first responders are busy helping with flood conditions in the region.
HonorFest 2011 was scheduled to take place today at First Energy Stadium in Reading, but with so many police, firefighters and ambulance crews assisting victims of this week's flooding, the organizers decided to move the event to Saturday, Oct. 1.
Supersized buyouts for school chiefs under scrutiny
Why do school board members elected to represent taxpayers hand over hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to overpaid school officials so they would leave? Where is the accountability?
From an article by Christina A. Samuels in Education Week:
Arlene Ackerman's $905,000 settlement with the Philadelphia district grabbed headlines, but she isn't the only Pennsylvania superintendent who has been shown the door in recent months with a generous settlement in hand.
According to media reports, William Hall, who led the 3,050-student Gettysburg district, left in February with $542,000. That included two years of salary and forgiving the mortgage on his house, which he had bought from the district's vocational education program. In August, Gerald Zahorchak, Pennsylvania's former secretary of education, was bought out a year into his five-year contract to lead the 17,700-student Allentown district. He will be paid a year's salary of $195,000 and a $55,000 lump sum.
Newspaper: Obama ratings sink to new lows as hope fades
Even the liberal media that worked so hard to get Obama elected in 2008 can't sugarcoat his disastrous presidency any more.
From The Washington Post:
Public pessimism about the direction of the country has jumped to its highest level in nearly three years, erasing the sense of hope that followed President Obama’s inauguration and pushing his approval ratings to a record low, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.
More than 60 percent of those surveyed say they disapprove of the way the president is handling the economy and, what has become issue No. 1, the stagnant jobs situation. Just 43 percent now approve of the job he is doing overall, a new career low; 53 percent disapprove, a new high.
Gary Bauer on Barack Obama's uncanny knack for eliminating jobs:
The federal government on Friday reported that fewer jobs were added to the American economy in August than in any month since World War II. Although economists had predicted that 75,000 jobs would be created in August, it turns out the net job gain was exactly zero.
Labor Day has always been associated with Big Labor, and thus, with the political Left. But at its core, Labor Day is about celebrating the American worker. And, as the August job numbers showed once again, it is the American worker who has been hurt most by the Obama administration's jobs-killing, growth-stifling agenda.
Tony Phyrillas is the managing editor and political blogger at The Mercury, a two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning daily newspaper in Pottstown, Pa. Phyrillas has won several national and state awards for commentary, including first place for column writing in 2010 by the Pennsylvania Associated Press Managing Editors. Phyrillas has been featured on National Public Radio and The New York Times and is a frequent commentator on radio and television programs. He co-hosted 'Talking Politics with Tony Phyrillas & Mike Pincus' on WPAZ 1370 AM from 2008 to 2009.