A nation of freebies can’t last

Thinking Right’s weekend free for all. Pick a topic:

● The state House minority leader, Rep. Stacey Abrams, D-Atlanta, accuses Republicans under the Gold Dome of trying to reduce her party’s 23 white incumbents to 10 by merging them into districts with blacks. No such conspiracy is necessary. It’s doubtful that Georgia has more than 10 to 12 state House districts (of 180 total) where white liberals are the majority. The solution to redistricting politics is often presented as surrendering line-drawing authority to a nonpartisan commission. That’s a no-go. Democrats would start out with virtually all seats off the table — minority incumbents protected by the Voting Rights Act — leaving the commission to work its nonpartisan magic on GOP districts.

● The Atlanta Journal Constitution’s fact-checkers decree as “false” a claim made by the Georgia Department of Transportation that work on a highway project in Cobb and Cherokee “is expected to create over 9,700 jobs statewide.” If we leave this economic downturn with nothing else, can’t we all agree that “jobs-created” is a bogus standard for projects that involve public money? Same for “lives saved.” And “spending now will save (some humongous sum) later.”

● If there’s a worse idea floating around than the suggestion by the Obama administration that it might turn thousands of government-owned foreclosures into rentals, please out it.

● One of those often-unnoticed changes in society’s attitudes that surfaced first in news accounts of the closing of Borders book stores, and later accounts of selective closings of Starbucks coffee shops, is how little people think it’s necessary to actually buy something. At Borders, they browsed — and if they found a book they liked, bought it online or elsewhere. At Starbucks, investment in one cup of coffee is presumed to pay the rent for hours of lounging. In some respects, we take the services of chain retailers the same as we take those of government, as freebies that come with no obligation to help pay the freight. Government services are “free.” Just get ’em and go. For a nation, that’s not sustainable.

● Mark my word: The availability of a simple blood test that reveals the gender of a baby at seven weeks, when it’s no larger than a bean, will be widely used to gender-select children. It’s 95 percent accurate, researchers say. It should be regarded as unethical, if not illegal, for physicians to provide that information without compelling medical reason. Such tests should not be available otherwise.

● It’s amusing that President Barack Obama declares — and the public takes seriously — that federal agencies should review and “remove outdated regulations that stifle job creation and make our economy less competitive.” Meanwhile, proposed new Environmental Protection Agency regulations on coal-power plants will raise electricity rates from a minimum of 11 percent up to 23 percent and kill hundreds of thousands of jobs, according to the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity, an industry group. With this administration there’s a serious disconnect between words and deeds. U.S. Sen. John Barrasso points out that during the month of July, the administration has proposed 229 regulations and finalized 379 others, adding $9.5 billion in new regulatory costs. And this week the administration announced new emissions regulations for trucks, to take effect in the 2014-2018 model years, which will add hundreds or thousands of dollars to the per-vehicle costs.

● There’s a ray of hope that a majority of Americans is concerned enough about the size and reach of government that we can save ourselves from financial disaster. In Wisconsin, public employee unions failed in recall elections to oust a sufficient number of state senators to give their preferred politicians the majority. We’re goners when public employees are able, straight-up, to elect their bosses.

59 comments Add your comment

Cutty

August 11th, 2011
8:33 pm

Same $hit. Different day.

Rafe Hollister

August 11th, 2011
9:32 pm

Obama is destroying this country and 2012 can not get here fast enough.

on patroll

August 11th, 2011
9:33 pm

Mark my word: The availability of a simple blood test that reveals the gender of a baby at seven weeks, when it’s no larger than a bean, will be widely used to gender-select children. – Your word? You didn’t think this up, you read this and made a snap decision and now it’s your word? This country does not limit the number of kids one can have nor is it a country that prefers one gender over another. Yes a husband wants a boy and the wife wants the girl usually, there is no way your implied increased abortion rate snap decision upon reading the newspaper will happen. Your word, hah.

on patroll

August 11th, 2011
9:42 pm

Government services are “free.” Just get ’em and go. For a nation, that’s not sustainable.
What are you talking about. Borders browsing and Starbucks customers sitting too long? Are you kinding me? How many starbucks have you been to that you were like, dang I can’t find a seat. Barnes and Nobles seems to be doing just fine, shouldn’t they be out of business using this logic. What isn’t doing fine is the post office and last I checked it wasn’t free, people didn’t browse, or loiter after their purchase. Name one free govt service, one.

DawgDad

August 11th, 2011
10:09 pm

I just read an article linked off Drudge about the extreme crime rate in East St. Louis, Illinois housing projects. Hailing from St. Louis orginally and having once worked in E. St. Louis I can tell you only the faces have changed in the past 40 to 50 years. The article describes circumstances where parents have NO cash income and rely solely on food stamps. There’s a lesson for Atlantans here. Sen. Durbin, in calling in the Feds, cites LOCAL sources of blame for the crime. Among other straw villians, such as liqour stores open all night, a local Sister who tutors children in the area cassts blame on the public schools for robbing youth of needed job skills [sound familiar?].

The AJC reported today Dr. Hall has once again been published in an educational journal. I have to wonder why she and the others who cheated kids of a proper education and cost the district and the State untold sums of money aren’t sitting behind bars?

Socialism is bankrupt; it’s past time to foreclose. But the anwer isn’t that simple; our focus must return to creating a land of opportunity [not outcomes] for all American citizens. Globalism has unplugged a drain on our economy, we need to counter with strong incentives to invest American capital in American on-shore initiatives. American companies and institutions need to put our under-employed youth to work and STOP racketeering in foreign and illegal labor.

MiltonMan

August 12th, 2011
7:29 am

Abrams = a moonbat.

She is a prime example of why the democratic party has lost so much respect in this state. Does she truly believe that the northern part of the state (where the majority of the population gain has occurred) should not benefit???

Her time would be better spent cleaning up the grabage known as the APS instead of relying on the governor to do this.

UIC

August 12th, 2011
7:32 am

“If there’s a worse idea floating around than the suggestion by the Obama administration that it might turn thousands of government-owned foreclosures into rentals, please out it.”

Try these two whoppers on for size…..”and I can’t put it any more plainly to the American people, and to them(referring to Iraq), we will stay on the offense. It’s better to fight them there than here.”
or
“We don’t want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud.”

Those two brilliant ideas cost us $1T and 4400 lives. Once foreclosures to rentals reaches that level, let me know.

Buzz G

August 12th, 2011
7:52 am

You mean there is no free lunch? Where would you get such a silly idea? 65 % of our school students get free or reduced lunches. Couple that with 47 million who get food stamps, and there are a lot of free lunches. We have a government which can just snap its fingers and free food appears. Isn’t life wonderful? Why would anyone have to work for a living with all this free stuff around?

carlosgvv

August 12th, 2011
8:22 am

Are you saying recall elections should be illegal? Are you saying that, in Wisconsin, the only people involced in the recall were public union employees?

Pizzaman

August 12th, 2011
8:39 am

As usual Jim has nothing relevant.

Aquagirl

August 12th, 2011
8:43 am

Government services are “free.” Just get ’em and go. For a nation, that’s not sustainable.

What’s unsustainable is the $2.2 million Republican deadbeats Graves and Rodgers grabbed from the banks. But please, Jim, continue your whining. Last time I checked, the “free” FDIC wasn’t bailing out Starbucks.

Peter

August 12th, 2011
8:49 am

Clean coal Jim, that is mostly an oxymoron.

JV

August 12th, 2011
9:13 am

Rule # 1 – It’s George Bush’s fault.
Rule # 2 – Only Obama can save us.
Rule # 3 – All people paying taxes should pay more taxes so Obama can give more to those not paying taxes.
Rule # 4 – All corporations are evil and rich, unless they contribute to Democratic causes.
Rule # 5 – Anyone who disagrees with the above rules is racist.
Rule # 6 – Repeat Rules 1 – 5 above, over and over.

Mr Woo (of China)

August 12th, 2011
9:15 am

It should be noted that the mate’s riots in Jolly Old England left the bookstores untouched. We are an illiterate species, you know, and if it takes a free latte to induce a pea-brain to actually touch a hard cover, become informed, and then more-succinctly expresso himself, well then, as Julius Caeser said, “Veni,Vidi, Vente”, (I came, I stained the pages of a book, I had a latte).

Mr Woo (of China)

August 12th, 2011
9:18 am

The gender of a baby should be known. If there are more girls than boys, then the auto companies should be given the heads up to make the future cars more crash worthy.

Women drivers you know.

Also, future ear plugs should be made more undetectable when worn. (husbands then can simply nod in agreement when he’s not hearing what the wife is yakin’ ’bout.)

laner

August 12th, 2011
9:31 am

isn’t Abrams statement really saying that the black voters are bigoted and would vote for someone based the color of their skin rather than the content of their character? Shame shame shame

Independent

August 12th, 2011
9:42 am

JV.. YES.. class warfare… Obama… get the Fat Cats.. ( read tax the successful )…. close the new Boeing plant in S.C. because the voted out the Union… Public vs. private sector jobs ??? green jobs ?? are 20 years away… EPA close the coal fired utility plants… can’t be anti business.. pro labor unions and create jobs at the same time !!! we can;t all work for the Gov’t…. vote against the corn ethanol subsidy !!

Alice

August 12th, 2011
9:59 am

Borders is closing because people prefer Amazon. Starbucks hasn’t closed any stores because of people sitting too long. They pulled the electrical plug in some of the stores because people were using too much electricity and internet but they didn’t close the store. And that is just a couple of reasons why I would never take your word on anything. Retire already. I hear Cynthia needs an assistant.

Voice of Republican Reason

August 12th, 2011
10:22 am

Funny how the trucking industry hailed the release of the new standards when they came out earlier this week. Said something about improving fuel efficiency and cleaner air and how the new standards will save much more in fuel over the life of the vehicle than the additional cost on the front end. But don’t let facts get in the way of a good rant. Oh, wait, I’m sorry, I’m talking to the rant king, who hasn’t seen a fact he can’t ignore. Please, please, I beg of you, retire permanently. Write only thank you notes and grocery lists. Please.

joe

August 12th, 2011
10:27 am

Theres no such thing as CLEAN coal. Thats like healthy death.

DawgDad

August 12th, 2011
10:37 am

What is going on in America today is NOT class warfare, it is class demagoguery. When the leaders are the Clintons, Reid, Pelosi, Kerry, Gore, et. al., with their high-powered union leaders, domestic and international financiers, and fascist corporate buddies backing them, it CANNOT be about class warfare – it’s about power and control, with a liberal/leftist ideological leaning.

Lawrence

August 12th, 2011
11:00 am

Cutty…

You must look forward to it for you are usually the first to respond. If you dislike it so much why do you bother reading?

jconservative

August 12th, 2011
11:10 am

“…a simple blood test that reveals the gender of a baby at seven weeks, when it’s no larger than a bean, will be widely used to gender-select children.”

So are you recommending another Federal agency to monitor the tests and/or make sure the tests are not used? Or a State agency?

Government cannot and should not be in control of one’s life from conception through burial/cremation.

Mike

August 12th, 2011
11:37 am

The 900 pound gorilla in the room is the Pentagon’s budget. It was doubled after 9-11 so that we could expand the empire. We need to radically cut the “defense” budget to the point that we only have military defending our country (and no other).

In 2010 the IRS collected 899 billion dollars in income taxes. The Pentagon’s Budget comes entirely from income taxes. The Pentagon’s budget in 2010 was 737 billion, which represents 82% of your income taxes going toward the military. And for what? Defending the USA? Nope, they can’t even control the borders or protect us from terrorists here on student visas from our “allies” Saudi Arabia. Instead we waste all that money in Iraq and Afghanistan.

It’s no wonder we borrow money. After all income taxes were collected in 2010, 82% was used for the Pentagon’s budget. The remaining 18% is for highways, national parks, welfare and food stamps, government administration, The Smithsonian, and more.

I hate to break it to you, but you can cut all welfare, national parks, food stamps and highway spending, but it won’t be enough to cover the difference if we don’t radically cut the Pentagon’s Budget.

Or, we can do what Republicans want. Take the money from Social Security’s separate system (that’s income for senior citizens) and take money from Medicare (health insurance for senior citizens) and give that to the Pentagon instead.

We can call it the Bomb before Bread program.

And when we are in heaven, facing the Lord, we can tell him that executives at Boeing were a bigger priority than our nation’s senior citizens, the poor, the hungry, etc.

Turns out the war against Christianity is being waged by the very people who think they’re Christians.

When I think of Tea Partiers I think of people who claim to be Christian, but have no idea how to put it into practice. We are an incredibly selfish society, and the Tea Party represents the most selfish among us.

They also have hating down to a science.

Maybe the best thing for liberals to do is step back and let the right wing have total control of the country. Then, like the Germans, we’ll see our country completely destroy itself with greed and hatred toward others.

Only then, perhaps, will we learn the dangers of fascism.

Communism has never been a real threat to the USA, but fascism is.

For the record, everything Adolf Hitler said was 100% wrong. Think about it.

Mr Woo (of China)

August 12th, 2011
1:22 pm

Retardo-rama.

Junior Samples

August 12th, 2011
2:24 pm

Me thinks that if you are unemployeed and voted for Obama then you have nothing to complain about. Empty suits make empty promises.

Howard

August 12th, 2011
3:06 pm

Jim…saw where your “etseemed” colleague Cynthia Tucker is moving on to journalism school where she’s going to teach a course about “Pesuasive Writing.” I thought that was hiralious…a radical ,left-wing, anti-USA socialist teaching that course. Her teaching it should cause the title to be changed to: “How to Lie Enough about Liberals to Convince a Gulliable and Naive Public that They Have the Country’s Best Interests at Heart.” Just more proof what journalism schools are teaching their kids…unadulterated liberalism. No unbiased reporting. Just straight liberalism.

Joe the Plutocrat

August 12th, 2011
3:08 pm

Jimbo, politics aside, let’s stick to the facts; at 7 weeks and barely the size of a bean; it’s not a baby. it may be ‘alive’ and it may eventually become a human, but it is not a baby. in other words, when you were a ‘baby’ you were not afforded some of the rights/priviledges you now enjoy (vote, drive a car, consume alcohol, own/discharge a firearm). let’s take the life/death thing out of this disucssion; as history shows us; very few policy decisions are rooted in ANYONE’S “right to life”.

Joe the Plutocrat

August 12th, 2011
3:15 pm

Mike, of course Communism (now terrorism) is the boogeyman. what self-respecting fascist who wanted to remain in power (actually, I prefer the label PLUTOCRAT) would warn Americans about losing their freedoms to fascists? fascists are dumb, but they’re not stupid. and unfortunately, it’s not a black and white issue; ’cause just as in the late 80’s/early 90’s’ when Communism (Cold War) was taken off the table (ironically, by the self-destruction/implosion of the USSR); the neo-con fear mongers drew up an entire roster of threats (drug/drug cartels, terrorists, progressives, homosexual agenda, immigrants, terrorists who are also drug cartels – aka “narcoterrrorists”). funny thing is; all these boogeymen still exist, but it is the Constitution (1st, 4th and 14th amendments come to mind) that seem to be suffering (aka the American people).

J.P.Modrak

August 12th, 2011
4:14 pm

Jim–Take some advice from an old son of a coalminer frpm PA, please don’t take “facts” put out by Southern Power. If they had spent their lobbyist money putting in scrubbing equipment and investing in chemistry to recover coal by-products, we would all be getting lower cost power and cleaner air. Any scientist/chemist could catalyze the coal-burning waste products to a stream of useful polymeric materials. I say spend the $20 million lawyers fees on 200 chemists and get the job done.
Do we pay these power company CEOs millions of dollars to think creatively in terms of modern technology? Hell NO! We’re paying them to get lawyers and fight the PSC, the EPA, the Asthma Society,the….

SpikeDDS

August 12th, 2011
6:30 pm

@on patroll, you said:

Name one free govt service, one.

I’ll name two, and I could go way beyond that:

1. Public education of illegal immigrants.
2. Emergency medical services for illegal immigrants.

You asked.

ack

August 12th, 2011
8:40 pm

Yeah. Christ, what is the EPA doing making it so we can’t burn more f***ing coal, anyway?

Just because it throws over 2 BILLION TONS of CO2 into the atmosphere every year, causing asthma for thousands, and ensuing deaths, and is a major contributor to climate change.

What are those A-holes thinking?

Jim, you really are a first class idiot.

Sam

August 12th, 2011
10:39 pm

The idea of turning the foreclosures into rentals is not a bad idea. Seems like I have heard some conservatives thinking this is a good idea.

Also, you can learn the sex of your baby plenty early enough to have an abortion—the ultrasound often will show the sex. The home test is not going to change anything. Now when it gets exported to China, it will be used, but then female babies are now killed after they are born. Is that any better?

Dave

August 13th, 2011
5:25 am

Hey, Mike, I suppose then Lenin and Stalin were right??? Communism was not a threat??? Review histroy first before ranting.

jconservative

August 13th, 2011
8:08 am

Jim, I just read the reprint of your 2009 column on Cynthia Tucker. Nice piece of writing.

Nothing personal but with Cynthia retiring I am losing my all time favorite columnist.

Cynthia is/was the best liberal side columnist I have ever read.

I have never been one to get a kick out of reading something that just supports my own thinking on an issue. I have always found that boring. And conservative columnist tend to bore me. I am conservative, I know the conservative position on issues.

I always knew that when I turned to Cynthia’s column I was in for a challenge.

I will miss her.

carlosgvv

August 13th, 2011
8:21 am

Howard –

Actually, “how to convince a naive and gullible public that they have the country’s best interests at heart” is an excellent description of what Tea Party fanatics have been doing.

hsn

August 13th, 2011
10:24 am

“A nation of freebies can’t last”

Yeah, so will a nation that fights multiple wars at once.

You Know Who---TBO

August 13th, 2011
12:13 pm

D a m n ……….. can I finally say something?

Why has this fish wrap been in a lock-down for 2 weeks?

Amen?

Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will crush the heads of the perverted New World Order integrationist crowd and their develish black minions

August 13th, 2011
6:38 pm

What happened to Glenn…………

Lee

August 13th, 2011
7:36 pm

I’ve heard it said the United States is the “Saudi Arabia” of coal. So, the EPA gets it’s way and regulates the US coal electric generating fleet out of existence. Where do you think all that coal will go? Do you think the coal companies will just quietly close shop?

No. They will ship it to China and developing countries to fuel their power plants. Power plants, I might add, that will not have the environmental controls that the US plants were required to have. Meanwhile, we’ll be paying about twice the price for electricity and praying that a hurricane doesn’t crash through the Gulf of Mexico and disable our natural gas supply.
——————————–

I agree with the other posters who say the only way to get a handle on the deficit is to rein in the Pentagon spending. About sixty years ago, Dwight Eisenhower warned us of the military/industrial complex. We didn’t heed his wise words and look where we are at.
——————————-

“A nation of freebies can’t last.” No, it cannot. Which is why we are in very dangerous times, as approximately 50% of the electorate does not pay any income tax – but they get to vote for the politician who will promise them “freebies” from the producers.

Glenn

August 13th, 2011
8:16 pm

Jim’s metaphor of Border’s bookstores stands for me also, a bit differently. Aside from Borders’ having served together with its remaining archrival as a coast-to-coast scourge of independendent bookstores, exactly in concert as Starbucks has done to local coffee house culture in places we don’t care about but might respect, so I wonder whether the imploding franchise bookstores such as Borders might be backfilled, in some places, by private partnerships capable of continuing those anchors as indepedent bookstores and music emporia and places pofitably to exchange art and literature and pay a bit extra for good coffee as a price of local admission.

Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will crush the heads of the perverted New World Order integrationist crowd and their develish black minions

August 14th, 2011
11:16 am

Oh, theres Glenn…

Boring,uneventful as ever……….. Who gives a rip about Starbucks or Borders , for that matter..
Haven’t missed his mouth last 2 weeks…………

Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will crush the heads of the perverted New World Order integrationist crowd and their develish black minions

August 14th, 2011
11:16 am

Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ will crush the heads of the perverted New World Order integrationist crowd and their develish black minions

August 14th, 2011
11:17 am

Not So Casual Observer

August 15th, 2011
9:30 am

Every word from Barrack Obama is either a self-serving platitude – or a falsehood.

No doubt the defense budget could be significantly reduced by simply walking away from Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya. Wes should also remove our military bases and personnel from all of the countries who vote against us in the UN and sponsor terrorism. Why should we pay them to hate us?

Not So Casual Observer

August 15th, 2011
9:42 am

Aquagirl,

Do you ignore the Billions of dollars George Soros and Michael Dell are stealing from the federal coffers through their “bank” formed solely to purchase the banks closed by the Fed? Their buddy, Barrack, talks about keeping people in their homes while he allows Soros and Dell (Obama’s financial supporters) to kick people to the curb and put foreclosures on the fast track.

Obama has formed a “Chicago Mafia” style of administration to pile the $$$$$ on his liberal pals and at the same time bankrupt the country and destroy the basis of American greatness – Capitalism.

headley lamar

August 15th, 2011
12:34 pm

headley lamar

August 15th, 2011
12:36 pm

“A nation of freebies can’t last”

Yeah, so will a nation that fights multiple wars at once.

Exactly. Any nation that starts wars recklessly with no idea how to end them is doomed to fail.

Think if we had all the money back we wasted in Iraq chasing the boogieman.

Peter

August 15th, 2011
1:21 pm

Most of the Freebies go to the rich, but hey…no issue with Jim !

I guess “Cost Plus Contracts” were not freebies…….then what were they ?

ld

August 15th, 2011
3:08 pm

It would be a pleasant surprise if the redistricting respected county lines a little more.

We cannot get out of the economic mess until we can out those that got us into it–the puppeteers behind the curtains in Congress & White House. This is not a blame game so much as an effort to prevent a repeat of this economic disaster. “Those that do not know history are doomed to repeat it.” We need to assure that those responsible stop profitting from the economic demise of this nation. They should never again receive tax $ in any form or hold public office–if we cannot prosecute them, at least we should be able to publically ridicule their greed, seek boycots of what is profitable to them and, most importantly, assure they cannot hold office or control of those that do. To know these “owners” of Congress, we need to know very specifically who got all that bailout $ and how much each got. Why has this died as an issue? Anyone else want it on the front burner in the 2012 election?