Because Destroying U.S. Health Care Is Not Enough

Here come the Democrats with cap and trade, right on cue, hell bent on destroying the U.S. economy, just not until they’re finished destroying the U.S. health care system first. Nevermind that the U.S. can reduce its emissions to zero and it won’t make a bit of difference toward affecting the global climate, so long as China and India don’t play along with the cap and trade scheme, something that both countries have rejected, in no uncertain terms. The only thing unilaterally imposing a cap and trade scheme on the U.S. will accomplish is to raise energy prices for consumers and devastate our economy.

Are Democrats deaf? Don’t they hear the American people emphatically saying no to their budget busting, tax and spend health care and climate change agendas?

Sens. Boxer, Kerry delay climate bill

Sens. Barbara Boxer and John Kerry said Monday the climate bill they are writing would not be finished until later in September.

The bill was expected to be ready when lawmakers returned next week.

“Because of Senator Kennedy’s recent passing, Senator Kerry’s August hip surgery, and the intensive work on healthcare legislation particularly on the Finance Committee where Sen. Kerry serves, Majority Leader Reid has agreed to provide some additional time to work on the final details of our bill, and to reach out to colleagues and important stakeholders,” Sens. Boxer (D-Calif.) and Kerry (D-Mass.) said in a joint statement.

See also:
US senators see climate bill delay
US climate change bill encounters new Senate delay
Climate-change legislation delayed — again
Getting Cooler? Senate Misses Another Climate Bill Deadline
Senate Democrats Push Back Climate Measure Schedule (Update1)

No, c’mon, bring it on! The timing is perfect for spewing forth another massive government boondoggle that’ll cost the American taxpayers trillions of dollars, put the country deeper in debt, and castrate the economy.

Seriously, go ahead and stick your Democrat fingers in the light socket, again. Big bonus points if you can get “card check” on the agenda too.

/talk about a political death wish

Weekly Watch List

GMCR
PCLN
NEU
NVEC
PEGA
JOSB
RKT
GES
ROST
TECD
ISRG
LFT
UNFI
BCSI
ADVS
LFC
CERN
MDAS

Additions:
ADVS
BCSI
GES
LFC
MDAS
TECD
UNFI

Subtractions:
CRI

Last week the market barely managed to eke out another gain, with all the major indexes up fractionally. The NYSE composite crawled ahead 0.5%, the S&P 500 added 0.3%, while the Dow and Nasdaq inched up 0.4% each. The IBD outlook is still “market in confirmed uptrend”, but there’s quite a bit of stock churning going on and the market topping vibe is pervasive. Caution is the watchword. Volume should be light again this week and return to more normal levels after Labor Day.

Once again, this week there are no stocks on the watch list that are potential buy candidates, although one might want to consider going long the VIX.

/as usual, your mileage may vary, always do your own homework

Czech Republic And Poland, Under The Bus!

Allies? We don’t need no stinkin’ allies!

Kissing Off Eastern Europe…

Quoting a U.S. source, the Polish daily Gazeta Wyborcza says the Obama administration has decided against building a missile shield to protect Poland and the Czech Republic. The reason? Russian opposition.

Now, if we want to build a defense system for friends in Europe, we’ll have to place it in the Balkans, Israel or somewhere else. That is, if Russia approves.

This is a stark reversal of past policy and reneges on promises made by the current administration. Worse, it shows weakness. We got into a staredown with the Russian bear and we blinked.

President Obama has vowed to support missile defense, provided it was “pragmatic and cost-effective.” Well, the Congressional Budget Office rated the system going into Poland and the Czech Republic as the most effective of the alternatives.

As for promises to our allies, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton just this month said the U.S. would offer our allies a “defense umbrella” against threats from a possible Iranian nuclear weapon.

Now, all that high-sounding defense rhetoric is out the window.

Coupled with the $1.2 billion slashed from the missile defense budget this year, the administration is making clear it hopes to kill off missile defense — a mistake we may all come to regret.

We’ve just weakened America’s standing in a critical region of the world — Eastern Europe — and let our allies down. We’ve made them vulnerable, in ways that only we could, to Russia’s growing military menace. Polish and Czech friends who had relied on us to stand firm and keep our word no doubt feel betrayed.

This diminishes our global influence. What smallish country will now take our word at face value when we promise to protect them?

The U.S. abandonment of the so-called “third site” development of 10 missile interceptors in Poland and a radar array in the Czech Republic signals our weakness to both Russia and Iran.

Iran, as some have recently estimated, is less than a year away from having a workable nuclear weapon. Germany’s intelligence agency, the BND, said in July that Iran will have the means to produce a nuclear weapon within six months. So the threat is growing.

On Feb. 2, Iran successfully launched a satellite using rocket technology that would be directly applicable to creating a long-range ballistic missile. It’ll soon be able to deliver a nuke.

Worst of all, according to the New York Times, President Obama in February sent a secret letter to Russian President Dmitri Medvedev offering to scrap our Eastern European missile defense in exchange for help with Iran’s burgeoning nuclear threat.

So far, it hasn’t been much of a deal. And as we scale down our defense efforts, Russia is boosting military spending at double-digit rates. Here we have all but abandoned the testing and rebuilding of our nuclear deterrent, and Russia only last month test-launched two new Sineva class sub-based ICBMs.

See also:
Will Obama surrender to Russia over missile defence?
‘US may cancel Europe missile shield’
US may drop East Europe missile shield plans
U.S. anti-missile plan becomes bargaining chip
James Carafano: Obama’s dirty missile defense secrets
Iran missile said to pose Europe threat in 3-4 years
Israeli expert says Iran could hit Europe in 3-4 years
Europe Could Face Iranian Missiles in 3-4 Years, Former Israeli Official Warns

/if you step back and take a look at all the new hopey/changey U.S. domestic and foreign policies, it’s as if Vladimir Putin himself was elected U.S. President

Best Explanation Yet, But Is It The Truth?

‘Arctic Sea’ was carrying illegal arms, says general

A general close to the investigation into the mysterious voyage of the Arctic Sea has told a Russian newspaper that he suspected the ship was carrying a secret cargo of illegal weapons, as many conspiracy theorists have suggested.

The newspaper, Komsomolskaya Pravda, interviewed what it described as a senior general in the Russian Navy who had been close to the investigation. The general said that he knew far more than he could say openly at this stage, but his testimony, if genuine, represents the first concrete information to come out of the investigation, which has been shrouded in mystery.

He said the theory that the ship might have been carrying drugs was excluded from the beginning, but that the investigation had focussed on a possible weapons shipment, in particular S-300 or X-55 missiles bound for Iran, and sold by a “weapons mafia” involving top Russian officials but operating outside of the law.

The efforts which Russia put into recovering a ship that had a stated cargo worth less than £1m, has led many to suspect that there may have been a secret, embarrassing cargo.

“I think that if this journey had been successful, Russia could have ended up in a huge international scandal,” he said. “I think that for this reason the order was given from the top to start this huge naval operation. We caught the boat to make sure we didn’t end up in a nasty situation.”

See also:
Pirated ship ‘had missile cargo’
‘Ghost Ship’ Stash
Hidden in Plain View
The truth is adrift with the Arctic Sea
Russian press allege Mossad connection to ‘Arctic Sea’
Did Mossad hijack Russian ship to stop Iran arms shipment?
Op-ed hints Mossad snatched Russian ship
S-300PMU
S-300
X-55 Long Range Cruise Missile
Raduga Kh-55
New Day, New Story

Well, the illegal smuggling of sophisticated Russian missiles destined for Iran would certainly explain why the Mossad might be interested in the cargo and why the Russians would mount such a large naval operation to recover the ship. It certainly makes infinitely more sense than believing all this fuss unfolded over a wayward shipment of lumber. But is it the whole or even partial truth, who the hell knows?

/with the Russians and, allegedly, the Mossad involved, we may never get a straight answer that resembles the actual truth

Still Stuck On Stupid And Doubling Down

US moves toward formal cutoff of aid to Honduras

U.S. State Department staff have recommended that the ouster of Honduran President Manuel Zelaya be declared a “military coup,” a U.S. official said on Thursday, a step that could cut off tens of millions of dollars in U.S. funding to the impoverished Central American nation.

The official, who spoke on condition he not be named, said State Department staff had made such a recommendation to U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who was expected to make a decision on the matter soon.

Washington already suspended about $18 million in aid to Honduras after the June 28 coup and this would be formally cut if the determination is made because of a U.S. law barring aid “to the government of any country whose duly elected head of government is deposed by military coup or decree.”

The president of the Dominican Republic, Leonel Fernandez, called for Honduras to be suspended from the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) with the United States as a means of putting pressure on the de facto government.

CAFTA offers its members preferential commercial terms.

Despite worldwide opposition over the past two months to the ouster of Zelaya, who was whisked to exile in an army plane, the interim government of former Congress head Roberto Micheletti says it will not be pressured into stepping down.

See also:
US Prepares Further Sanctions Against Honduras Coup Leaders
Clinton ponders action against Honduras
US ready to cut off millions to coup-hit Honduras
US ‘disappointed’ by Honduras mission failure
Selective Meddle For Communist Dictators

Military coup? It was the Honduran high court that removed Zelaya and appointed Micheletti, the civilian head of Congress, as the interim President, until the next scheduled elections. Besides escorting Zelaya to the airport, by order of the Honduran high court, the Honduran military had nothing to do with the transfer of civilian power and the military was never in control of the government, not even for one minute.

/is there some reason the United States is carrying water for the Castro brothers, Hugo Chavez, and Daniel Ortega here?

Enough Already!

It hasn’t even been 24 hours and this is getting way out of control.

Hatch’s Tribute to Kennedy in Song

Much has been written about Sen. Kennedy’s reach across the political aisle. One of his closest friends on the Republican side of that aisle, Sen. Orrin Hatch, posted a song he wrote as a tribute to Sen. Kennedy on his YouTube page today.

Chris Matthews Designates Obama as a Kennedy: ‘Barack Is Now the Last Brother’

MSNBC host Chris Matthews appeared three times on Wednesday’s Today show to lionize Sen. Ted Kennedy, and twice he promoted Barack Obama as the “last brother” of the Kennedy political tradition. He tried to clarify a little in his appearance in the 10 am hour: “I don’t mean that in an ethnic sense or a black sense. I mean a brother of the Kennedy tradition. And I think he’s the new brother, not that last brother.”

‘Win One for Teddy,’ Say Dems Pushing for Health Reform

Democrats are hoping that the memory of Sen. Ted Kennedy will revive the Democratic Party’s flagging push for health care reform.

You’ve heard of ‘win one for the Gipper’? There is going to be an atmosphere of ‘win one for Teddy,’” Ralph G. Neas, the CEO of the liberal National Coalition on Health Care, told ABC News.

Democrats are hoping that Kennedy’s influence in death may be even stronger than it was when he was alive as they push for President Obama’s top domestic priority. Democratic officials hope that invoking Kennedy’s passion for the issue will counter slippage in support for heatlh care reform.

Geez, from all slobbering on the TV today, you’d think that the Sea Lion of the Senate was the most wonderful, sainted human being ever to walk the earth. Nevermind that Teddy left Mary Jo Kopechne to suffocate in the back of his Oldsmobile at Chappaquiddick. And a couple other blasts from Kennedy’s past that you won’t hear a peep about in all the wall to wall, 24/7 sugar coated TV tributes are Teddy’s associations with the IRA and the KGB.

Some hero.

/RIP Ted, now get on with the funeral and bury him

Holder Declares War On The CIA

Losing the health care debate badly? Need to distract the public attention from the horrific deficit forecasts being released tomorrow? No problem, just demagogue a five year old report and threaten to persecute evil Bush era CIA interrogators!

Holder to Appoint Prosecutor to Investigate CIA Terror Interrogations

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. has decided to appoint a prosecutor to examine nearly a dozen cases in which CIA interrogators and contractors may have violated anti-torture laws and other statutes when they allegedly threatened terrorism suspects, according to two sources familiar with the move.

Holder is poised to name John Durham, a career Justice Department prosecutor from Connecticut, to lead the inquiry, according to the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the process is not complete.

Durham’s mandate, the sources added, will be relatively narrow: to look at whether there is enough evidence to launch a full-scale criminal investigation of current and former CIA personnel who may have broken the law in their dealings with detainees. Many of the harshest CIA interrogation techniques have not been employed against terrorism suspects for four years or more.

The attorney general selected Durham in part because the longtime prosecutor is familiar with the CIA and its past interrogation regime. For nearly two years, Durham has been probing whether laws against obstruction or false statements were violated in connection with the 2005 destruction of CIA videotapes. The tapes allegedly depicted brutal scenes including waterboarding of some of the agency’s high value detainees. That inquiry is proceeding before a grand jury in Alexandria, although lawyers following the investigation have cast doubt on whether it will result in any criminal charges.

Word of Holder’s decision comes on the same day that the Obama administration will issue a 2004 report by the then-CIA Inspector General. Among other things, the IG questioned the effectiveness of harsh interrogation tactics that included simulated drowning and wall slamming. A federal judge in New York forced the administration to release the secret report after a lawsuit from the American Civil Liberties Union.

A separate internal Justice Department ethics report on the professionalism of lawyers who blessed the questioning techniques continues to undergo declassification review and is not likely to be released imminently. The New York Times reported Monday that the ethics report recommended that Holder take another look at several episodes of alleged detainee abuse that previously had been declined for prosecution during the Bush years, bolstering his decision to appoint a prosecutor.

Leaders at the Justice Department and the intelligence community have clashed this year over the release of sensitive interrogation memos, military photographs of detainee abuse and how to handle the cases of more than 200 detainees at the prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Holder’s decision could complicate the Justice Department’s relationship with the White House, where President Obama has repeatedly expressed a desire to move forward from the national security controversies of the Bush administration. Deputy White House press secretary Bill Burton told reporters Monday that the president had complete faith in Holder and that the decision whether to launch an investigation was the attorney general’s sole prerogative.

“The White House supports the attorney general making the decisions on who gets prosecuted and investigated,” Burton said.

Holder acknowledges the possible fallout from his decision, but has concluded in recent days that he has no other choice than to probe whether laws were broken in connection with the Bush administration’s interrogation program, the two sources said. Fewer than a dozen cases will be examined, most from Iraq and Afghanistan.

Any criminal investigation into the CIA conduct faces serious hurdles, according to current and former government lawyers, including such challenges as missing evidence, nonexistent or unreliable witnesses, no access to some bodies of detainees who died, and the passage of up to seven years since the questionable activity occurred far from American soil.

During the Bush years, a team of more than a half-dozen career prosecutors in the Eastern District of Virginia, which is renown for its expertise in probing clandestine operations, reviewed about 20 cases of alleged prisoner abuse after receiving referrals from the military and then-CIA Inspector General John Helgerson. Among the assistant U.S. attorneys involved in the review was Robert Spencer, who successfully prosecuted al-Qaeda operative Zacharias Moussaoui and who later won one of the highest awards the Justice Department bestows.

In only one of the cases did the lawyers recommend seeking a grand jury indictment. A federal appeals court earlier this month affirmed the assault conviction of David A. Passaro, a CIA contractor who wielded a metal flashlight against a detainee at a military base in Afghanistan. Passaro was not charged with murder. Abdul Wali, the detainee he questioned, died shortly after the beating but investigators could not conclusively link his death to the flashlight attack.

A former government official involved in the previous review said that, given problems with evidence, there was “no conceivable way we could have come out different” and sought criminal indictments. The official said that analysis might change if new and reliable witnesses emerged.

Current and former CIA officials from both Democratic and Republican administrations have cited the prior review by prosecutors as one of several reasons why the Obama Justice Department need not act. They fear that any criminal investigation will chill intelligence activities and alienate operatives who are responsible for protecting national security.

See also:
Attorney General Holder opens ‘preliminary’ investigation of post-9/11 interrogations
Holder Orders Review Into Abuses of Terror Suspects (Update2)
Holder Releases Statement on Detainee Interrogations, Special Prosecutor
Holder’s Pick for CIA Investigation Known as Tough, Diligent
Sources: Report to detail alleged abuse inside CIA secret prisons
CIA staged mock execution, wielded power drill in interrogations, secret report says
CIA Faulted for Conduct at Prisons
DOJ probe opens divides with Hill, CIA
Liberals and the CIA
Civil Liberties Groups Prepare Delicate Message on CIA Probe
GOP senators warn Holder against CIA abuse inquiry
Republicans warn Holder on probe
U.S. Republican senators oppose investigation into CIA
Panetta Letter to CIA Staff on Release of Interrogation Report
Panetta Defends CIA in E-Mail to Agency
Obama White House v. CIA; Panetta Threatened to Quit
Is Panetta About to Quit?
The Justice Dept.’s War On Heroes

Okay, the memo is five years old and the alleged transgressions contained within, from even further back in ancient history, basically boil down to CIA interrogators threatening some of the world’s worst and deadliest terrorists with nasty and frightening, yet totally fictitious, never intended to be implemented, torture techniques and retribution against the terrorists’ family members. Sticks and stones didn’t hurt their bones, only words were used to break them. These allegations have already been thoroughly investigated, a long time ago, by career prosecutors experienced in CIA matters, and in the one case where abuse was found charges were brought.

Why is Holder digging up this well settled grave again after all these years, to placate the uber liberal CIA haters, the ACLU, to stroke his own ego? Doesn’t he care what damage it will do to the CIA and how much it will demoralize CIA operatives out in the field, risking their lives every day to defend America and keep us safe? What part of numerous past and present CIA Directors vociferously telling him, in no uncertain terms, that this new witch hunt is a really bad idea doesn’t he understand? Hell, even Obama doesn’t particularly want to travel down this long abandoned road.

/given Eric Holder’s undaunted determination to give aid and comfort to the enemy, at the expense of those standing between us and the enemy, it’s unclear as to where his loyalties lie and who’s side he’s really on

Weekly Watch List

GMCR
NVEC
PCLN
NEU
LFT
PEGA
RKT
CRI
JOSB
ROST
ISRG
CERN

Additions:
None

Subtractions:
CTRN
CUB
JST
UNFI
VRX

Last week the market managed to put together another positive effort, with all the major indexes reaching new high ground for 2009. The S&P500 added 2.2%, the NYSE composite 2.1%, the Dow 2%, and the Nasdaq 1.8% for the week. However, last week didn’t start out very well. On Monday, the indexes plunged precipitously, causing IBD to jump directly to an outlook of “market in correction”. They maintained this outlook through Friday, but then decided to reverse themselves after four straight up days following last Monday’s steep sell off. So, going into tomorrow, the IBD outlook is now “confirmed uptrend resumes”.

Be forewarned though, the uptrend is resuming with a significant number of distribution days still weighing on its potential sustainability. It wouldn’t take a whole lot of significant downward action to push the IBD outlook over into “uptrend under pressure” or “market in correction”. Personally, I’m approaching the current market environment with extreme caution. While the market managed to finish up again last week, it’s carrying a lot of baggage and I can’t shake the feeling that some form of a correction is most likely iminent.

Once again, this week there are no stocks on the watch list that are potential buy candidates.

/as usual, your mileage may vary, always do your own homework

Obama’s $2 Trillion Friday Night Dump

Gee, is it any wonder that Obama decided to unload this little gem late on a Friday, just as he slips out of town on vacation, not to be disturbed?

White House Adds $2 Trillion to Deficit Forecasts

The nation would be forced to borrow more than $9 trillion over the next decade under President Obama’s policies, the White House acknowledged late Friday, bringing their long-term budget forecast in line with independent estimates.

The new projections add approximately $2 trillion to budget deficits through 2019. Earlier this year, the administration had predicted that Obama’s policies would require the government to spend $7.108 trillion more than it collects in tax revenue over the next decade.

An administration official, speaking on the condition of anonymity because the report will not be formally released until Tuesday, said the change is due primarily to updated projections of economic growth that are far less rosy than data used when the White House released its first long-term budget outlook in February. At that time, the White House predicted the economy would shrink by 1.2 percent this year; in fact, the economy shrank at an annualized rate of 6.4 percent in the first quarter, the sharpest drop since 1980.

Critics called the administration overly optimistic, charging that Obama’s figures masked the depth of the nation’s fiscal crisis and falsely suggested that his policies would stabilize the nation’s growing debt to China and other foreign creditors.

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has predicted that Obama’s policies would force the nation to borrow $9.1 trillion between 2010 and 2019. Like the White House, the CBO is scheduled to release an updated forecast on Tuesday.

US deficit poses potential systemic risk: Taylor

The U.S. budget deficit poses more of a potential risk to the financial system than the collapse in commercial real estate prices, an influential economist said on Friday.

“We have a huge deficit. … The stimulus package is generating a lot more debt, and there are systemic issues there,” Stanford University economics professor John Taylor told Reuters Television on the sidelines of the Federal Reserve’s annual Jackson Hole conference.

The Obama administration expects the deficit to hit a record $1.58 trillion this year, and sees a cumulative $9 trillion of additional red ink in 2010-1019.

“If that gets out of control, if interest rates start to rise because people are reluctant to buy all that debt then that can slow the economy down. So, that’s the more systemic concern I have,” Taylor said.

See also:
White House to Boost 10-Year Deficit Forecast to $9 Trillion
New 10-year Federal Deficit: $9 Trillion, Up from $7 Trillion
W.H. hikes deficit estimate by $2 trillion
Obama raises 10-year deficit to $9 trillion
$9 Trillion in Deficits for 2010–2019
Obama to raise 10-year deficit to $9 trillion
US to hike 10-year deficit forecast to nine trillion dollars
Warren Buffett warns budget deficit may harm dollar
New deficit projections pose risks to Obama’s agenda
9 Trillion Reasons Health Care May Be Dead

$9 TRILLION DOLLARS? Add another $2.5+ trillion for health care “reform” and cap & trade and Obama’s on track to double our national debt in the next decade! Can’t they see how reckless their policies are, are they on drugs? Unless we turn this borrow and spend trend around quickly, it’s only a matter of time before the U.S. loses its AAA credit rating, defaults on its debt, and spirals into economic collapse.

/STOP SPENDING, CUT SPENDING, DO IT YESTERDAY!

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