Thursday, February 26, 2009

Not Enough Rich people?

That's what the Wall Street Journal found out.

They took the number of "rich" in America and figured out what 100% of their income was.

A tax policy that confiscated 100% of the taxable income of everyone in America earning over $500,000 in 2006 would only have given Congress an extra $1.3 trillion in revenue. That's less than half the 2006 federal budget of $2.7 trillion and looks tiny compared to the more than $4 trillion Congress will spend in fiscal 2010.

Uh oh... so you mean those tophat-wearing bastards can't pay for the rest of us?

Powerline adds:
It's also not enough to make up for the $1.75 trillion deficit Obama expects to run this year. So the Democrats' fantasy that they can pay the bills on the backs of the "rich" is just one more stop on Obama's magical mystery tour.

So what are Obama's options? Well he can raise tax rates on the rest of us, cut government programs (think he'll cut ones that are full of graft and kickbacks for his political friends or silly things like the military?), give up on a balanced budget, blame Bush, or find some way to make more rich people.

Yes, I know. Rich people are bad, we need less of them, not more. Don't worry, Obama will make us all equal, well those of us without political connections.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A for effort?

Students complain that they're not getting the grades they deserve.

“I think putting in a lot of effort should merit a high grade,” Mr. Greenwood said. “What else is there really than the effort that you put in?”

How about how correct your work is? How about the quality?

If a person didn't do much work on a math problem and they got it right, should they get a lower grade than a person that worked all night and got it wrong?

Ace nails it
With all due respect to Mr. Greenwood, there is something more than effort - results. Effort is certainly admirable, but the purpose of education is to achieve understanding of the material. If a student cannot pass tests or submit papers, they should not be expected to earn high grades.

Sarah Kinn, a junior English major at the University of Vermont, agreed, saying, “I feel that if I do all of the readings and attend class regularly that I should be able to achieve a grade of at least a B.”

So alot of effort is defined as basic reading and attendance?

“If you put in all the effort you have and get a C, what is the point?” he added.

The point? The point is that maybe you're just not good enough. Just because someone tries their hardest is no reason to give them an A. That's like saying "Well sure he failed all his medical tests but he tries SO hard!"

“If someone goes to every class and reads every chapter in the book and does everything the teacher asks of them and more, then they should be getting an A like their effort deserves. If your maximum effort can only be average in a teacher’s mind, then something is wrong.”

Emphasis added. Mr. Greenwood is going by a bit of slight of hand here. Meeting, and exceeding, the teacher's requirements is A quality work. However, if someone really is doing that level of work, odds are they're not griping about "I put in enough effort."

Then we get into the logistics. How pray, should a prof measure effort?

And how does this "effort-measure" even remotely fly in math, hard sciences, or applied sciences. You know where there are verrifiable results and actual wrong or right answers.

These kids, and I use the term deliberately, need to realize something: Sometimes your best isn't goood enough.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

So far: comedy of errors

Obama just can't get a Sec Comm: Gregg out.

He didn't like Porkulus and having the Census taken from him.

Hmm first Bill Clinton said "[W]ouldn’t it be nice if your children didn’t have to worry about being mowed down by an assault weapon when they turn the corner?"

And now he's all for a new Fairness Doctrine.

When you don't care about the Second Ammendment it's hard to care about the First.

Monday, February 9, 2009

The Porkulus is coming.

So here's ten questions about it

1. You assert that without your economic stimulus plan unemployment will reach double digits. If your stimulus plan passes, as expected, what do you project the unemployment rate to be in one year? Two years? Three years?

2. How many jobs will the bill create in its first year? In what sectors of the economy will the job growth occur?

3. What will the deficit be in 2009? 2010? 2011?


9. What’s the percentage probability that the stimulus plan will work? If you can’t give an estimate, why should we give you one trillion dollars?

10. What’s your Plan B if the economic stimulus doesn’t work? What's your exit strategy if the plan actually does harm?

And two non-stimulus bonus questions:

The tax problems of Geithner, Daschle, Killefer, and Solis are different in kind and degree. Please describe your standards for permitting some tax scofflaws to remain in your administration but not others.
You 're about to ramp up military operations in Afghanistan but Russia has pressured Kyrgyzstan to forbid the U.S. from using the Manas air base crucial to supplying our forces in Afghanistan. What have you done about that?

More questions could be. "Do you foresee the need for another such bill next year? How does the urgency of this current bill mesh with TARP II?"

Don't expect the lapdog press to ask these basic questions.

And we see how Obama handles a challenge...

By getting out of the White House and back onto the campaign trail.

Seriously, he's in Elkhart Indiana campaigning.

In a way, Obama’s escaping rather than campaigning. The problem in this bill isn’t in Elkhart, and neither is the solution. Obama let his signature issue jump off the rails when he failed to control Nancy Pelosi and force her to get Republicans involved in writing the bill. That didn’t happen in Elkhart. He could solve that problem by summoning Pelosi and Harry Reid to the Oval Office and instructing them to go back to the drawing board, this time with Republican leadership, and get a bill that would gain massive support on both sides of the aisle.

Obama doesn't want to negotiate. Not with domestic rivals, oh no, that's saved for enemy countries.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Well, I will say this. Obama has shown leadership and judgment befitting his temperament and experience.

Those were my thoughts on seeing how Obama handles the "challenges" of actually being President.

"vbspurs" has some similar thoughts.

That cool cat with the million dollar smile. The post-partisan uniter of all Americans, the guy who was going to cure our nation's ills with his wonderful speeches, and steady calm hand. Mr. Cute Puppies, Happy Rainbows and Chocolate Chip Cookies. HIM.

Because when he took his first Air Force One trip to Williamsburg, VA (9 minutes one-way from D.C.; take that carbon credits!) to address the House Democrats' retreat, he belted forth with such angry frustration at the Stimulus Package meeting resistance, that I had to blink.


Or do you reckon that in the 47 years of his time on earth, no one had actually, really told him "no", "you can't", "you have to wait", "hey, what's your hurry", and lastly, "settle down, you're behaving like a brat throwing a tantrum" and, "Oh my God, did you just totally give me the bird"?

Because that would explain his petulant, almost Reverend Wrightish delivery, with that strange preacher cadence he assumed on the campaign trail -- which is so very at odds with his new Office.

Alas, I'm afraid I've come to the conclusion that Barack Obama is a rather spoilt man, unused to waiting for anything he wanted, unused to real challenge after having been everyone's darling since the time he was very young.

I think that hits the nail on the head. Our President never met a situation he couldn't charm, talk, or cover his way out of. And when in doubt he could just campaign for the next highest office.

Well... Mr. President. You can't do that now. Though it will be darkly humorous to watch you try.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

"When we criticized Barack Obama’s lack of executive experience, even we didn’t think it was going to be this bad."

From Ed Morrissey of Hotair.

Yet another Obama pick with tax problems...

That makes 25% of Obama’s original Hope and Change Cabinet picks comprised by tax evaders. Add that to the fourth scandal of Bill Richardson’s pay-for-play federal grand jury investigation, and we have a full-blown vetting disaster. And that doesn’t even count new Attorney General Eric Holder’s politicization of Justice ten years ago on behalf of Bill Clinton in the FALN and Marc Rich pardons, or the dozen-plus lobbyists hired by the President Who Hates Lobbyists.

And what happens when someone asks an Obama spokesman for some transparency, something that Obama is nominally all for...

Video at the link. This also shows more of Obama's stellar, stellar quality in picking staff.

Meanwhile the Speaker of the House has no idea how many people live in the US
500 million jobs lost a month.

And Glen Reynolds notes the rampant double standards.
So in a way we have found a new kind of politics. We've gone from a "culture of corruption" in which people who figured in scandals (can you say "Duke Cunningham"?) faced actual consequences, to a culture of impunity, in which it's taken for granted that the rules for big shots are different.

Don't pay your taxes? If you run a dry cleaning shop in Cincinnati, the IRS will come down on you like a ton of bricks. But if you're a congressman or a former senator or a Treasury nominee, you can just sheepishly pay up, perhaps even , as in Daschle's case, without being assessed any penalties.

Ironic given the pap that Obama fed the American populace. Feeling conned yet?

And then there's this:
Mr. President, I'm sure your life has been a whirlwind since Election Day—since the day you announced your campaign, really—but, uh, the work is just getting started. Two weeks into the job seems a bit early to be getting "tired of being in the White House."

And then there's his stance on heating the Oval Office. Nevermind how living in a greenhouse is a bit tin eared when Americans are freezing to death do to lack of power...

How does the President react to mounting criticism to a bloated pork-filled bill? One that will double the size of the US gov?

With campaign rhetoric and threats of course!