Monday, July 20, 2009

Obama Poll Numbers Dip - Government Takeover of Health Care in Trouble

Poll Shows Obama Slipping on Key Issues
Approval Rating on Health Care Falls Below 50 Percent
■ "Heading into a critical period in the debate over health-care reform, public approval of President Obama’s stewardship on the issue has dropped below the 50 percent threshold for the first time, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll."
■ "Obama’s approval ratings on other front-burner issues, such as the economy and the federal budget deficit, have also slipped over the summer, as rising concern about spending and continuing worries about the economy combine to challenge his administration. Barely more than half approve of the way he is handling unemployment, which now tops 10 percent in 15 states and the District."

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Obama Didn't Increase Voter Participation in 2008 Election per Associated Press


2008 voting rate down as older whites stayed home
July 20, 2009
Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) - For all the attention generated by last year's presidential race, census figures show the share of eligible voters who actually went to the polls in November declined from 2004.
Census figures released Monday show about 63.6 percent of eligible voters, or 131.1 million people, cast ballots last November. Although that represented an increase of 5 million voters, the turnout was a decrease when taking into account population growth. In 2004, the voting rate was 63.8 percent.
According to the data, more older whites opted to stay home compared with 2004, citing little interest in supporting either Barack Obama or John McCain.

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Friday, July 17, 2009

Extravagance Worthy of the 'King of Pop'

See Laguna Beach Independent at

Extravagance Worthy of the 'King of Pop'


Was there ever anything that topped the Michael Jackson memorial extravaganza?

There was an event in 1852 that was truly a must see. Everyone who could attend from San Diego to San Luis Obispo went to Los Angeles to see the nine-mile horse race between Sarko and Black Swan.

In 1821 Mexico won its independence from Spain. Only 25 years later, the United States won California and other lands winning the Mexican War in 1846. The U.S. recognized some of the Mexican land grants, so Pio Pico, the last Mexican governor of California, and Jose Andres Sepulveda were owners of large ranchos.

From 1837 to 1842 Jose Andres Sepulveda received grants known as Rancho San Joaquin, which later was sold to James Irvine and others to become a 50,000-acre portion of the Irvine Ranch. The ranch extended from "Newport Bay southeast to the center of what was then Laguna Canyon Creek, and is now the middle of the block between Broadway and Ocean Avenue," according to Belinda Blacketer, president emeritus of the Laguna Beach Historical Society.

Pio Pico and Jose Andres Sepulveda had quite a race in 1852, Pio Pico himself losing $1,600 and 300 head of cattle. The owners of the great ranchos may have been even more extravagant than Michael Jackson, wearing outfits for important occasions costing over $1,000.

Sarko was a race horse owned by Pio Pico, and Jose Andres Sepulveda purchased an Australian horse Black Swan. In the 1952 book "The Irvine Ranch" by Robert Glass Cleland, he writes: "In 1846, when Pio Pico's governorship and the Mexican regime came to a simultaneous end in California, the two brothers, Pio and Andres, were among the three or four largest landowners in the state. Like [Jose Andres] Sepulveda, they were also passionately devoted to horse racing and indulged quite as freely as Don Jose in the reckless wagers of the time."

Cleland quotes Thomas D. Mott, one of the spectators of the race: "No preparations were made to put the track in condition, and not much of the race outside of start and finish was seen, as mustard on both sides of the road was 10 feet high. The length of the course was nine miles, or more properly speaking, three Spanish leagues .... Everybody in the country was present and the whole country as far north as San Luis Obispo and south to San Diego was depopulated. They all came to see the great race."

Robert Glass Cleland continues: "The wagers included $25,000 in cash, ... 500 horses, 500 mares, 500 heifers, 500 calves, and 500 sheep. To the great chagrin and impoverishment of the Picos and the many other backers of the stallion, the mare [Black Swan] won the race by some 75 yards."

I wish I had seen it.

"After the victory, Sepulveda bought Black Swan and took her back to the Rancho San Joaquin. There the mare stepped on a nail, contracted lockjaw, and died."
Gene Felder,
Laguna Beach


Sunday, July 05, 2009

President Obama Sides with Thugs Not Democracy

See New York Post July 5, 2009 editorial “BAM'S BLUNDERS ABROAD” NYPost July09 at
■ “It took a week for President Obama to say something of substance against the violent repression of anti-government protesters in Iran. Fear of meddling, he said, was the reason for the delay.”
■ “Yet it took just hours for him to publicly denounce the removal of Honduran President Manuel Zelaya, an ally of Venezuelan America-hater Hugo Chavez, by that nation's army and demand his immediate reinstatement. No fear of meddling this time.”
■ The "banana republic" military coup was nothing of the sort -- that Zelaya's ouster was meant to preserve Honduran democracy, not suppress it.”
■ “Zelaya's removal, after all, came at the direct order of the Honduran Supreme Court and was approved by both the nation's attorney general and its Congress.”
■ “Replacing Zelaya as president was not a military junta but the head of the Congress, a member of Zalaya's own political party, which had declared him unfit for public office. And the replacement immediately called for new national elections and vowed to abide by the results.”


Friday, July 03, 2009

Obamanomics Suck

See Wall Street Journal Editorial Friday, July 03, 2009 at
■ “the loss of 467,000 jobs for the month [of May 2009] is one more sign that the economy still hasn't hit bottom
■ “If the ‘stimulus’ were working as advertised, it ought to be very strong. Washington has thrown trillions of dollars at this recession, including that famous $787 billion in more spending that was supposed to yield $1.50 in growth for every $1 spent. This followed the $168 billion or so stimulus that George W. Bush and Nancy Pelosi promised in February 2008 would prevent a recession. The jobless rate that month was 4.8%.”
■ “With manufacturing on its back, enacting a new energy tax to drive more jobs offshore is crazy even on Keynesian grounds.”
■ “it's worth recalling that Mr. Obama's economists predicted late last year that the stimulus would keep the jobless rate from exceeding 8%. That was a percentage point and a half ago. It's far more likely that the economy would have been better off without the spending, and the higher taxes and debt financing that it implies.”
■ “As always, a sustained expansion and job creation must come from private investment and risk-taking. Yet as America's entrepreneurs look at Washington they see uncertainty and higher costs”