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The good and the bad...presented with permission from The Patriot E-Journal

web posted October 28, 2013

"In the recent internecine conservative donnybrook over the government shutdown, the insurgents insisted they were in an ideological struggle with the establishment. But there was precious little ideology involved. Instead, it was a fight over tactics and power. The Republican Party almost unanimously opposed Obamacare, and the Republicans who've been in office far longer than Cruz & Co. have voted more than three dozen times to get rid of the disastrous program. And yet, the latecomers to the battle talk as if the veterans in the trenches were collaborators the whole time. ... But the real source of that frustration is not the insufficient conservatism of the establishment; it's the insufficient power and popularity of conservatism coupled with the very real failures of the GOP to reverse conservatism's fortunes over the last two decades." -- Jonah Goldberg

"We are on course to becoming the first nation of negative-millionaires. ... In Australia, each citizen's share of the debt is $12,000; in New Zealand, it's $15,000 per person; in Canada and Spain, $18,000; in the United Kingdom, $28,000; in Germany and France, $38,000; Italy, $44,000. And in the United States it's $54,000 per person -- twice as much as Britain, thrice as much as Canada, closing in on five times as much as Oz. On this trajectory, America is exiting the First World. And that's before counting the 'unfunded liabilities' that Washington keeps off the books but which add another million bucks per taxpayer. Nor does it include Obamacare, with which the geniuses of the 'technocracy' have managed to spend a fortune creating the Internet version of a Brezhnev-era Soviet supermarket. ... Either you think those numbers above are serious or you don't. And, if you do think they're serious and you're a 'lawmaker' ... when are you going to get serious? Next month? Next year? Or shall we all sportingly agree to leave it till 2015 after the bipartisan deal on a $20 trillion debt ceiling?" -- Mark Steyn

"In an era where Google is making self-driving cars and Amazon offers next-day delivery for just about anything, the White House plunged ahead with a system it knew to be defective and is relying on the technology of the 19th century as the fall-back. ... The consequences of this mismanagement go beyond the technical. ... [T]he exchanges fiasco is revealing the larger truth that ObamaCare's claim to technocratic expertise was always a political con. ... [I]t was all a veneer for ObamaCare's real goal, which is to centralize political control over health care. That false front is clear now as we are told to ignore the faulty rollout because it will get fixed, eventually, and in any case the law is really about reducing inequality. ... The actual results will always matter less to liberals than their good intentions and expanding the reach of government." -- Wall Street Journal

"[W]e should sit down and look at constructive ways to make ObamaCare, the Affordable Care Act, work better. ... In just a short period of time, 17 million Americans have tried to log on to this website [Healthcare.gov]. A half a million ... are moving towards signing up for health insurance. This is a popular program. Let's make it work better instead of trying to defund it." -- Sen. Dick Durbin

"It's just unimaginable the actions that [Republicans] would turn to to get their way on a very small and modest bill -- ObamaCare. We're talking about universal health care for everybody -- single-payer, that's what the new direction is." -- Rep. John Conyers

"[Healthcare.gov] was contracted out to the private sector, and the private sector with all the money they got, couldn't develop the website that we needed. It shouldn't have been done by government, but we should have had more competent people in the private sector, and if anybody's head should roll, it should be the contractors who didn't live up to their contractual responsibility." -- Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA)

"I grew up conservative, remember. So I had a William Buckley view of the United States in the '40s and '50s -- that we were good guys, and that we were moral, and that we were doing the right thing. And now I think, how did we become this bully -- this international terror that dominates the world scene today? ... I do feel that the Jim Crow laws are very important, coming back, by the Supreme Court gutting the Voting Rights Act. ... [Republicans] don't want the Hispanic, Asian, black mixture to take over. ... I think that's what the gun laws are about, too. The states want states' rights. They want to keep the rules white. That's how I see this Tea Party." -- Oliver Stone

 "[T]his administration has taken steps to increase the transparency. Not as much as, I'm sure, everybody would like in this room, but certainly whether it's the president giving speeches about counterterrorism, giving speeches just recently about our intelligence gathering and how we're reviewing that, we've actually taken steps to be more transparent both to our people but to other countries around the world. ... I think we can use whatever definition of 'transparent' we want." -- State Department Deputy Press Secretary Marie Harf

"The Obamacare website isn't so funny when you realize that the same government that made that also handles nuclear weapons." -- Humorist Frank J. Fleming

"[W]hen Congress and President Obama agreed on a deal last week to raise the debt ceiling and resume government spending, people reacted as if a disaster was averted -- instead of reacting as if a disaster had resumed. It has. And it continues. Congratulating ourselves for raising the debt ceiling once again, the way we do every time this drama plays out, is like congratulating an alcoholic for talking the bartender out of cutting him off. As with alcoholics, there's a deeper problem here. It's not just that America is addicted to debt. Everyone agrees we should pay our bills, just not when or how. The deeper addiction is to government." -- John Stossel

 "The only people who feel there shouldn't be more coming in to the federal government from the rich people are the Republicans in the Congress. Everybody else, including the rich people, are willing to pay more. They want to pay more." -- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV)

"I don't even buy into the idea that [Democrats] lost the [2010] election because of health care. One of the most damaging votes that our members had to take was the TARP. The Democrats were the one who saved the day with that vote, and people never really got over that vote." -- House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)

"The Affordable Care Act is an enormous success, with one obvious exception: It has a poorly designed website. The law has already accomplished a lot." -- Rep. Henry Waxman

"I started out in my opening statement saying there was no legitimacy to this hearing, and the last line of the questioning certainly confirms that. ... No health information is required in the application process. And why is that? Because pre-existing conditions don't matter. ... I will not yield to this monkey court or whatever this thing is. ... [W]hy are we going down this path? Because [Republicans] are trying to scare people so they don't apply, and so therefore the legislation gets delayed, or the Affordable Care Act gets defunded, or it's repealed. That's all it is, hoping people won't apply." -- Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. during Thursday's Healthcare.gov hearing

"I use only carbon-free electricity. Have 33 solar panels on my roof, seven deep geothermal wells under my driveway, LED lights and highest-grade energy-saving windows, max insulation, hybrid plug-in car, etc. No fountains, btw. What you can do? Make smart choices for low-carbon options in the marketplace, make sure you divest from carbon-intensive stocks; be a smart and active citizen!" -- Al Gore

 "Here's a very disturbing story. You may have heard about this -- 25-year-old man in New York arrested for trying to join al-Qaida. Well, here is the amazing part. He said it was still easier to join al-Qaida using their website than it was to sign up for ObamaCare. ... Today there were more problems with the website. It seems when you type in your age, it's confusing, because it's not clear if they want the age you are right now or the age you'll be when you finally log in." -- Jay Leno

web posted October 21, 2013

"If we put all the women, Republican and Democrat in the House together, the consensus from all of us is that we would get this [budget deal] done in a few hours." -- DNC head Debbie Wasserman Schultz

"I never questioned, never questioned the fact that Republicans, Democrats and independents love this country. ... But I have to say, when you start acting like you're committing domestic abuse, you've got a problem." -- Sen. Barbara Boxer

"I have no problem in a country with so many guns in circulation with a family exercising their First [sic] Amendment right to defend their families with a handgun at home. But nobody can tell me that any civilian in America needs a military-style assault weapon or a magazine which has 30 to 100 bullets as we saw in Aurora or Sandy Hook." -- CNN's Piers Morgan

 "In 50 years, Americans are far less likely to be talking about this month's budget follies in Washington than they are to be asking why this generation was warned about the risks of man-made climate change and didn't do more about them." -- USA Today editorial

"Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me; fool me for five years, I'm an Obama voter." -- Columnist Charlie Martin

"No major legislation has ever been passed like Obamacare -- and I'm using the word 'passed' pretty loosely. It became law without both houses ever voting on the same bill. (Say, is the Constitution considered 'settled law'?) ... The most hilarious part of the 'settled law' argument is that it's coming from the left, for whom nothing is ever 'settled' until they get their way.... Liberals seem to believe our founding fathers sought to create a country where the pushiest always win. (That's why they're the party of trial lawyers.) They want the nation's policies to be determined by a never-ending co-op board meeting dominated by the most obnoxious shareholders. ... Liberals will fight until they get their way -- and, as soon as they do, they announce their one victory is 'settled law.' That's what happened with Obamacare. ... When Democrats refuse to give up on an issue, it's against the will of the people with one party laughing, 'Ha ha! We have 60 votes!'" -- Ann Coulter

"President Obama, the Congressional Black Caucus, black state and local politicians, and civil rights organizations are neither naive nor stupid. They have been made aware of the unemployment effects of the labor laws they support; however, they are part of a political coalition. In order to get labor unions, environmental groups, business groups and other vested interests to support their handout agenda and make campaign contributions, they must give political support to what these groups want. They must support minimum wage increases even though the increases condemn generations of black youths to high unemployment rates. They must support Davis-Bacon Act restrictions even though those restrictions handicap black contractors and nonunion construction workers. I can't imagine what black politicians and civil rights groups are getting that's worth condemning black youths to a high rate of unemployment and its devastating effects on upward economic mobility, but then again, I'm not a politician." -- Walter E. Williams

"Let's work together to make government work better, instead of treating it like an enemy or purposely making it work worse. That's not what the founders of this nation envisioned when they gave us the gift of self-government. You don't like a particular policy or a particular president? Then argue for your position. Go out there and win an election. Push to change it. But don't break it. That's not being faithful to what this country's about." -- Barack Obama

"There was so much economic hurt that had already piled up ... people just didn't have any wiggle room, when the Tea Party decided to stick a knife into the backs of hard-working American families. We're here because Tea Party Republicans in the House see this misery as a bargaining chip." -- Sen. Chris Murphy

 "Let me ask you, when it comes to ObamaCare, do you hate ObamaCare more than you love your country?" -- MSNBC anchor Thomas Roberts to Rep. Marsha Blackburn

"[ObamaCare is] about the benefits, about the liberation of people to a healthier life of liberty; the freedom to choose their happiness, that all remains." -- Nancy Pelosi

"There's a body of congressional people that want to paralyze the system. I think what sits underneath it unfortunately is there's probably some racism involved, which is really awful." -- Robert Redford

"An Illinois man wrote his Congressman to say that, thanks to Obamacare, 'my premium is now higher than my mortgage.' Can't wait until Obama fixes the problem by making home ownership mandatory." -- Fred Thompson

web posted October 7, 2013

"We can work out something, I believe, on the medical device tax. That was one of the proposals from the Republicans. As long as we replace the revenue so that we don't put a hole in our deficit and respond to this in a responsible fashion. That's one thing the Republicans want to talk about it. Let's sit down, and put that on the table." -- Sen. Dick Durbin

"[T]hose people [Republicans trying to hinder ObamaCare] are guilty of murder in my opinion. Some of those people they persuade are going to end up dying because they don't have health insurance. For people who do that to other people in the name of some obscure political ideology is one of the grossest violations of our humanity I can think of. This absolutely drives me crazy." -- Sen. Angus King

"Apple, you know, has a few more resources than we have to roll out technology, and a few more people who've been working on the system for a while, and no-one is calling on Apple to not sell devices for a year or to, you know, get out of the business because the whole thing is a failure. … Hopefully [consumers will] give us the same slack they give Apple." -- HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius

"They are anti-government ideologues. It's the Tea Party shutdown of government." -- House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi

"Does Speaker Boehner need to engage in something like the ancient practice of sacrifice, this time to the right-wing gods? Do we have to sacrifice the economy and help for millions of middle class people?" -- Sen. Chuck Schumer

"It's a government shut down / Because our president is brown ... Republicans hate Obama so badly / They jeopardize the livelihood of thousands of families! ... Obamacare is law, but Boehner keeps hatin' / Opposin' health care? That sounds like Satan." -- Radio talk-show "comedian" Chris Paul

"The problem is America's growing acceptance of the delusory propositions that opportunity means someone else's good luck. That passing the buck is the prelude to receiving bucks galore from other parties. That the government must surely love and care for you, because ... well, don't you watch the President's speeches?"-- Columnist William Murchison

"We hope [ObamaCare] fails spectacularly because that would provide an emotionally satisfying dramatic conclusion. If Barack Obama is forced to spend, say, the last two years of his presidency contending with the undeniable failure of his signature initiative, that would be a fitting punishment for the hubris of his first two years, especially since the imposition of ObamaCare on an unwilling country was the main consequence of his hubris. We hope it fails quickly for an additional reason: to minimize the damage. ... The communist revolution would not have succeeded absent a critical mass of people hopeful communism would work. Nor would it have endured as long as it did if no one had an emotional interest in its perpetuation. Hope, in other words, poses a moral hazard: It can be a species of pathological altruism." -- James Taranto

"During the course of my presidency, I have bent over backwards to work with the Republican party. I think I'm pretty well known for being a calm guy. Sometimes people think I'm too calm. And am I exasperated? Absolutely, I'm exasperated. Because this [government shutdown] is entirely unnecessary. I am exasperated with the idea that, unless I say that, 'Twenty million people, you can't have health insurance,' these folks will not reopen the government. That is irresponsible." -- Barack Obama

"What we see happening with this Republican strategy is a willingness to threaten the very foundation of the world's greatest economic power, the economy that basically stabilizes the entire world economic system, and that is a very risky proposition." -- White House Press Secretary Jay Carney

"We support the federal government. That's our job, that's what we do." -- Harry Reid

"[The debt ceiling] does not cost taxpayers a single dime. It does not grow our deficits by a single dime. It does not authorize anybody to spend any new money whatsoever. All it does is authorize the Treasury to pay the bills on what Congress has already spent. Think about that. If you buy a car and you've got a car note, you do not save money by not paying your car note. You're just a deadbeat." -- Barack Obama

"Carbon emissions also trap heat. [The IPCC's] report shows oceans have absorbed 90% of that heat, raising ocean temperatures by half a degree. Had all that heat gone into the atmosphere, air temperatures could have risen by more than 200 degrees." -- CBS' Ben Tracy

"Well in a letter to John Boehner, Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew said the government will run out of money in just three weeks. You know, I'm no financial whiz, but we're $16 trillion in debt. Doesn't that mean we already ran out of money -- like 16 trillion dollars ago?" -- Jay Leno

web posted September 30, 2013

"'This is the United States of America,' declared President Obama to the burghers of Liberty, Missouri, on Friday. 'We're not some banana republic.' He was talking about the Annual Raising of the Debt Ceiling, which glorious American tradition seems to come round earlier every year. ... As Obama explained in another of his recent speeches, 'Raising the debt ceiling, which has been done over a hundred times, does not increase our debt.' I won't even pretend to know what he and his speechwriters meant by that one, but the fact that raising the debt ceiling 'has been done over a hundred times' does suggest that spending more than it takes in is now a permanent feature of American government. And no one has plans to do anything about it. Which is certainly banana republic-esque." -- Mark Steyn

"[Y]ou would think that Republicans will sweep in 2014 -- increase their hold on the House, and take the Senate. But that isn't what voters have in mind. Rasmussen ... finds that currently, Democrats lead Republicans in the generic Congressional preference poll by 40%-37%. It's a paradox: voters prefer Republicans on the issues, but still lean toward voting for Democrats. One could speculate about why that is true; I think it is obvious that the press's ceaseless attacks on Republicans are part of the explanation. That is a longstanding problem, but the numbers suggest that Republicans will do best if they keep pounding away on the issues, especially the ones where voters are predisposed to favor them." -- John Hinderaker

"Invent something and the first thing that goes through some people's minds -- especially politicians' minds -- is what might go wrong. 3D printers now allow you to mold objects right in your living room, using patterns you find online. ... But what critics see is: guns! ... On TV, Rachel Maddow sneered about 'a well-armed anarchist utopia, where everybody fends for themselves with stupid-looking plastic guns. … It's a political effort to try to do away with government.' Do away with government? If only we could do away with some! Big-government politicians and their cheerleaders in the media focus on threats posed by innovation because they fear loss of control. They move to ban things. ... In a free market, a symphony of desires comes together, and they're met by people who constantly rack their brains to provide better services and invent solutions to our desires. It's not a few people desiring guns that I fear. It's government getting in the way of all those new possibilities." -- John Stossel

"A not-so-fond farewell to IRS doyenne Lois Lerner, who resigned Monday as the agency's director of Exempt Organizations. Since announcing in May that the IRS had singled out conservative groups applying for tax exempt status for additional scrutiny during an election season, Ms. Lerner has been on paid administrative leave. Not a bad deal, getting paid not to work -- so why resign now? One answer is that this gets ahead of a recently completed but still not released IRS personnel review that we hear criticizes her job performance and recommends she be fired. By resigning now, she will collect her full pension and benefits, though she still refuses to answer questions from Congress. ... Ms. Lerner's resignation under duress reflects the IRS's acknowledgment that her actions profoundly discredited the agency. Let's hope the rest of the reckoning isn't as long in coming." -- Wall Street Journal

 "Now, I want you to think about this: the GOP is saying to young people, 'We would like to have the government stick an unnecessary trans-vaginal probe in you if you want an abortion, but when it comes to health insurance, don't take any government help. ... And if you die an agonizing and unnecessary death, one that could have been prevented by the health insurance reform that bears the president's name, at least you know your death will not have been in vain." -- MSNBC's Krystal Ball

"[W]e're seeing an extreme faction of these [Republicans] convincing their leadership to threaten to shut down the government if we don't shut down the Affordable Care Act. ... It is not going to happen. We have come too far. We've overcome far darker threats than those. ... We're not going to allow anyone to inflict economic pain on millions of our own people just to make an ideological point." -- Barack Obama

"[Republicans] have been running around the country demagoguing, scaremongering on this [ObamaCare] issue. They're not afraid that it's going to be unsuccessful, they're afraid it's going to be successful and all of that misinformation will be shown to be a fraud." -- Rep. Chris Van Hollen

"Are Republicans so intent on undermining both President Obama and his signature health care law that they're willing to inflict severe damage to our economy in the process? ... This 'Thelma and Louise' style just isn't getting the attention of the American people in a positive tone. If Democrats don't bow to every demand [Tea Party Republicans] have, they want to go right over the cliff. Well, we're not going to go with them." -- Harry Reid

"Jesus said that you're going straight to Hell if you didn't treat the lesser of His brothers and sisters. And what did He say? He said he was hungry, you didn't give him food stamps; He was thirsty, you didn't purify the water; that he [was] naked, and you didn't give him Social Security." -- Rep. Charlie Rangel

"I came up with the idea at least 20 years ago that we needed more women in politics. ... And I suggested that men be barred from political office. They could do everything else, be president of universities, business leaders, but they just couldn't serve in any elected position for 100 years. I think we'd have a lot more emphasis on education and health care and a lot less on Army and the Navy and the Marine Corps." -- Ted Turner

"To defund Obamacare, can't we just distract Obama for a month so he forgets to pay the bill?" -- Frank J. Fleming

 "[N]o Congress before this one has ever -- ever -- in history been irresponsible enough to threaten default, to threaten an economic shutdown, to suggest America not pay its bills, just to try to blackmail a president into giving them some concessions on issues that have nothing to do with a budget." -- Barack Obama

"I do think ... that none of us should be negotiating on the debt ceiling, it should just be lifted. When it comes to the C.R. (continuing resolution], the president has negotiated. ... [T]his is a president who has been so bipartisan and that is a quality that the American people like." -- Nancy Pelosi

"I also think ... that some of this Tea Party anger is racist and that having a non-black person on the ticket will diffuse it to some degree." -- NPR's Cokie Roberts

"I think it's important for you to tell the people why we're doing all this outreach, because this [law] only works, for example, if young people show up. ... We've got to have them in the pools, because otherwise all these projected low costs cannot be held if older people with preexisting conditions are disproportionately represented in any given state." -- Bill Clinton



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