Archive for December, 2012
One thing that’s been bothering me in the debt ceiling discussion is the total absence of consideration of what’s the best path forward for the nation. Altogether too often, the discussion has focused on President Obama’s re-election, not the fact that he didn’t win a mandate from the American people.
The message the nation sent wasn’t that they approved of President Obama’s mishandling of the economy. Rather, the nation sent the message that they elected the lesser of two evils. (That isn’t my perspective but it’s the message the voters apparently sent.)
They definitely blamed President Bush for the economy without giving President Obama high marks on the economy.
The reality is that the nation re-elected Republicans to run the House of Representatives despite President Obama’s victory. The point is that neither Democrats or Republicans have a mandate. That means doing what’s right on the federal budget and what’s right for creating jobs.
Despite his victory, President Obama hasn’t proposed policies that create enough jobs. Month after month, job creation lags farther behind population growth. Month after month, family incomes drop. Despite the Democrats’ insistence that the economy has turned the corner, the reality is that the Democrats’ policies haven’t created the robust job growth that’s needed.
There isn’t an economist out there that’ll argue that President Obama’s policies will start creating jobs in the numbers we need to lift ourselves from this recession.
Speaker Boehner shouldn’t buy into the media’s myths about the Democrats winning the fiscal cliff debate. If we go over the cliff, historians won’t call this Speaker Boehner’s recession. That’s because presidents, not speakers, get the fault for the recessions just like they get the credit for when the economy soars.
President Obama’s legacy won’t be filled with stories of how the stimulus revived the US economy. The ACA won’t be recorded as a success, either. It’s a failure. President Obama’s strict adherence to his failed ideology will be his legacy.
There’s never been a time when this many taxes have been raised and this much money spent this recklessly and the economy recovered. That’s before talking about President Obama’s exponential growth in regulations, which are exploding while ruining the US economy.
It’s time for Republicans to start promoting their plan as the only plan from either party that addresses the problems confronting the nation. That isn’t because it’s the greatest plan ever devised. It’s partly because Democrats haven’t offered a serious economic plan.
One of the nicknames that the St. Cloud Times has acquired throughout the years is the St. Cloud SomeTimes. After reading this Our View op-ed in the SC Times, it appears they need a new nickname. I propose that new nickname be the ‘Behind the Times’ for obvious reasons. Here’s part of the Times’ hatchet piece:
St. Cloud-area Rep. Steve Gottwalt is under some scrutiny in the wake of a Minnesota Public Radio news report last week that highlighted the reasonable public perception of a potential conflict of interest involving his private business dealings and his powerful legislative role in reforming health care coverage.
The Dec. 10 report stated shortly after Gottwalt, chairman of the House Health and Human Services Reform Committee, championed reforms to a state-run health care program, he became a licensed insurance broker, allowing for the possibility of selling products to those purged from that program.
The District 14A Republican also entered into a business partnership with another broker who had lobbied for Gottwalt’s reforms. And to further compound matters, Gottwalt hasn’t done a thorough job of explaining all this to constituents.
This is ancient news. Long before he was elected to represent HD-15A, Steve Gottwalt worked in the health insurance industry, though not as an insurance agent. As a freshman legislator in 2007, Steve became one of the experts in the House GOP Caucus on HHS issues because of Steve’s experience in the health insurance industry.
As for the Times’ cheapshot that Rep. Gottwalt “hasn’t done a thorough job of explaining all this to constituents”, that’s BS. The vast majority of the people that contributed to Steve’s campaign knew about Steve’s history within the health insurance industry.
After leaving his job with a local company, Steve opted to get his license to sell health insurance. That was well after Gov. Dayton signed Steve’s HHS reform plan into law. That’s a natural thing for him to do.
The Times admits that “Gottwalt’s actions don’t merit an ethics probe”, which is like admitting that they didn’t have much for the editorial page so they created this non-story.
With all their resources, you’d think the Times could find time to write something about the SCSU administration doctoring students’ transcripts. That’s something worthy of an editorial. This garbage isn’t. The question now is why the Times isn’t devoting any ink on a real scandal. Is it that they’re protecting this administration?
It’s time for the Times to come clean if that’s what they’re doing.
It’s indisputable that the Twin Cities DFL has repeatedly voted to kill precious metals mining projects in Ely and Hoyt Lakes. It’s indisputable that Iron Range DFL legislators didn’t criticize the State Executive Council when they shafted miners this week. They’ve tried spinning their votes in a variety of ways but the truth is inescapable: the metro DFL hates mining and will go to extraordinary lengths to stop future mining projects from becoming reality.
It isn’t surprising that Gov. Dayton voted to shaft the miners. As Prof. Kent Kaiser highlighted in an op-ed over a year ago, Gov. Dayton has a history of shafting miners:
Indeed, Dayton’s actions this month were more consistent with his actions two decades ago. At that time, when he was on the State Executive Council as state auditor, he called for the postponement of mining lease votes so he could consult first with the Sierra Club.
While Gov. Dayton’s actions throughout history have been disgusting, they pale in comparison to what he’s done, with the help of the DFL’s militant environmentalist allies, to miners and the Iron Range.
After the 2010 U.S. Census, it was noted that the median household income for St. Louis County, which is the heart of the Iron Range, was $44,941, compared with the statewide average of $57,243. That’s a $12,302 disparity between St. Louis County and the statewide average. It gets worse when compared against Sherburne County’s median household income, which is $71,704, a disparity of $26,763.
It isn’t just the income disparity that paints the truth about the DFL. It’s the fact that the Twin Metals project in Ely and the PolyMet project in Hoyt Lakes would create 1,000 high-paying mining jobs that would end that income disparity while dramatically lifting Iron Range’s economy from mediocre to exceptional.
Notice that I said those project would create 1,000 mining jobs. That’s before factoring in the support jobs those operations would require. That’s before factoring in the possibility of manufacturing operations moving into cities like Hibbing, Grand Rapids and Eveleth to take advantage of the minerals.
That’s before talking about how other mining projects would boost school funding through mining leases in the school land swap areas that the DFL and their militant environmentalist allies are preventing. Some estimates say that these projects could add $2,000,000,000 to the school trust fund over the life of those mining operations.
The clear message from Conservation Minnesota and Friends of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is that precious metal mining is a different, more environmentally unsafe, type of mining. Kennecott has a sterling reputation for limiting and reducing emissions. While this video is of their mining operation in Utah, they were good stewards of their Flambeau River mining operation in Wisconsin. Here’s what their Flambeau River mine:
This link includes an aerial photo of what the Flambeau Mine looks like 16 years after it ceased operations.
Conservation Minnesota, another subsidiary of the Dayton Politics family of political operations, talks the environmentalist talk. Kennecott walks the environmentalist walk.
It’s clear that Kennecott is the real steward of the land.
Tags: Conservation Minnesota, Alida Messinger, Sierra Club, Mark Dayton, Environmentalists, DFL, Kennecott Mining, Daybreak, Utah, Flambeau River, Wisconsin, Twin Metals, PolyMet, Minnesota, Conservationists, Median Household Income, Jobs
When the Minnesota Executive Council decided to postpone the approval of the initial exploration leases, the DFL denied the Iron Range’s miners the opportunity to make a better living for themselves. That wasn’t a smart thing to do. Retiring Rep. Rukavina responded to my email to him. Here’s the email I wrote Rep. Rukavina:
Rep. Rukavina, As a conservative writer, I’ve rarely agreed with your policies but I’ve always admired how you fought for the people of your district. I’d appreciate your opinion on the State Executive Council’s decision to postpone their decision on approving new leases for mineral exploration.
It pains me to see the disparity in incomes between St. Louis County ($44,941) vs. the statewide average ($57,243). There’s no reason why that disparity is that wide. Frankly, it’s disgraceful.
Rep. Ruckavina, I’m in the process of writing an article about the Executive Council’s vote for Examiner.com & I’d love getting your perspective on their decision. Just reply to this email if you’re interested. I promise to publish your statement verbatim in my article.
Good luck in your retirement. Though I disagreed with you, I always appreciated your willingness to fight for your constituents. That’s an honorable thing to do.
Here’s Rep. Rukavina’s reply:
I’m perplexed. I sent an email to the three who voted no, I’m awaiting a reply. Frankly, if Gov Dayton is pissed off at the DNR (hell, Rangers have been pissed off at them forever), he should fire some top dogs over there. But don’t take it out on the good people of the Range who have been mining for 130 years and playing by the rules that some folks now want to change.
Perplexed and pissed off would better describe my reaction. But hey, I’m a has been but I have been wondering why I’m the only member of the Range delegation who seems
concerned about this. Perhaps it’s because I’m the only member of the Range delegation who represents the real Iron Range and has never represented any other constituents in my 26 year tenure.
Sorry for not answering you sooner. I’m falling behind on emails as I have been
doing home projects that I neglected for two decades!
There’s nothing for Rep. Rukavina to be sorry about. It isn’t his fault that the DFL doesn’t consistently fight for the citizens of the Iron Range.
I didn’t hide the fact that I’m a passionate conservative from Rep. Rukavina. That didn’t matter to him. His first concern was about his constituents. I respect Rep. Rukavina for tring to put his constituents first.
Presumptive Senate Majority Leader Bakk allegedly represents SD-3 in northern Minnesota. I say allegedly for two reasons. First, he didn’t get much financial support from within the district. According to the report, Sen. Bakk got $1,000 from his district. By comparison, Sen. Bakk got $7,760 in contributions from the Twin Cities and $500 from New Jersey.
The reason why that’s relevant is because Sen. Bakk hasn’t uttered a peep about Gov. Dayton, Secretary Ritchie and Rebecca Otto decided to shaft miners in Sen. Bakk’s district. In fact, Sen. Bakk was joined in silence by David Dill, David Thomassoni, Tom Saxhaug, Tom Anzelc and Carly Melin after the State Executive Council’s decision to shaft the miners.
The Silent Six haven’t spoken out for their constituents because they can’t speak out because Alida Messinger will quit writing checks to the DFL and the House and Senate DFL campaign committees.
The Silent Six, led by Sen. Bakk, have put campaign contributions ahead of what’s best for their constituents. What proof exists that the Silent Six have passionately fought for their constituents? Fighting for a few extra dollars for the IRRRB doesn’t count because the IRRRB isn’t fighting for miners either.
A question that doesn’t need asking is whether the DFL has the cajones to tell Alida Messinger to take a hike. Selling their soul for campaign contributions might get them a legislative majority but it isn’t helping the DFL do what’s right for Minnesota’s blue collar workers.
I’ll guarantee that the GOP would approve those leases if they had a majority on the State Executive Council. In fact, they’d help create 1,000 jobs almost instantly upon being sworn into office.
Finally, the Silent Six represent what’s wrong with Minnesota politics. They didn’t pretend to care about their constituents. They sold their constituents out the minute they got their thirty pieces of silver.
The DFL isn’t the party of the people any more.
This op-ed by Rolf Westgard states the damage done by the Twin Cities DFL in its attempts to killing precious metal mining projects.
Last spring, Conservation Minnesota created a website telling Minnesotans that projects like the Twin Metals mining project near Ely and the PolyMet precious metals mining project near Hoyt Lakes would severely damage watersheds. Mr. Westgard refutes that:
There is a 714-page Draft Environmental Impact Statement(DEIS) for the Polymet Project from the Minnesota DNR and the Corps of Engineers. It is clear from the Statement that any effluent from the project ends up in the drainage areas of the Partridge and Embarrass Rivers. Those rivers flow south to the St Louis River and Lake Superior, not north to the Boundary Waters.
The DEIS is generally positive about the project, and it suggests that if all of Polymet’s commitments are met, there is no serious impact on the environment. The following quote from the DEIS on the Partridge River applies to its analysis of all three rivers involved: “Even with these higher loadings and assuming no natural attenuation, the model results indicate that water quality standards for the Partridge River would be maintained for the eight constituents studied (i.e., antimony, arsenic, fluoride, cobalt, copper, nickel, vanadium, and sulfate) under all flow conditions and mine years modeled. Therefore, even using relatively conservative assumptions, the Proposed Action is not predicted to result in any exceedances of surface water quality standards for the Partridge River at the modeled locations.”
Simply put, the DEIS’s findings refute everything Conservation Minnesota and Alida Messinger said about these mining projects. What’s more important is that Conservation Minnesota’s fearmongering-filled campaign against Twin Metals, PolyMet and other proposed mining projects might have a significant impact:
The state of Minnesota owns more than 6,000 acres of land in the region, and I estimate that Minnesota’s schools would collect at least $2.0 billion in royalties in the coming decades if these new mining projects proceed. This state property is known as “school trust lands.” Under the Minnesota Constitution, income from such lands is earmarked for the Permanent School Fund, which contributes about $60 per pupil to every school district. An analysis by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources projected that the school fund, with assets of $720 million, could more than triple in size with these new royalties over 25 to 30 years.
In other words, preventing these mining projects from happening is stealing $60 per year for each public school student for the next thirty years. That’s the impact that Conservation Minnesota and other militant environmentalist organizations would have on school funding.
What’s most disturbing is the fact that the EPA is essentially admitting that they’re rejecting PolyMet’s proposal for political reasons:
PolyMet is the furthest along in the environmental review and permitting process. In 2010, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency gave the company’s draft Environmental Impact Statement a failing grade, calling the mine’s environmental impacts “unacceptable” and the review itself “inadequate.”
Dr. Westgard isn’t the oil companies’ shill. He isn’t the mining companies’ shill either. Dr. Westgard is “a professional member [of the] Geological Society of America and is guest faculty on energy subjects for the U of Minnesota LIfelong Learning program.” If Dr. Westgard is convinced that the Arrowhead, the Iron Range and especially the Partridge River won’t be negatively affected by these projects, then it’s imperative that these projects get started ASAP.
These projects will rejuvenate the Iron Range’s economy while pouring significant money into K-12 education without hurting the environment. Why wouldn’t Conservation Minnesota, the Metro DFL and the Silent Six jump at this win-win-win opportunity?
Tags: Conservation Minnesota, MiningTruth.org, Alida Messinger, Mark Dayton, Mark Ritchie, Tom Bakk, Tom Saxhaug, Tom Anzelc, David Thomassoni, Dave Dill, Carly Melin, The Silent Six, DFL, Iron Range, Education, Economy, Employment, Twin Metals, PolyMet, Mining
Once again, the Twin Cities DFL voted to drive another nail in the miners’ coffin:
The state Executive Council in St. Paul voted 3-1 to delay the leases pending a decision by the Minnesota Court of Appeals on whether an Environmental Assessment Worksheet should be done to gauge potential environmental impact where the exploration will take place.
Mining companies want the leases to expand their search for copper, nickel, gold, platinum and other valuable metals away from known deposits and into new areas. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources ruled in October that no environmental review was necessary before the leases are awarded. But several northern Minnesota citizens disagreed, and last month they filed a petition with the Court of Appeals.
The same citizens on Thursday asked the Executive Council to hold off on approving the leases until the court has ruled.
Gov. Mark Dayton, Secretary of State Mark Ritchie and State Auditor Rebecca Otto agreed, and voted to delay action. Attorney General Lori Swanson supported the DNR leases. Lt. Gov. Yvonne Prettner Solon was not at Thursday’s meeting in St. Paul.
Dayton went as far as scolding DNR officials for not making the minerals lease process more open and accessible for public input, and he called for a meeting in his office in the near future to include concerned citizens and top DNR staff.
Gov. Dayton’s hissy fit is great theatrics but the Executive Council’s vote says it all. The Twin Cities DFL consistently votes against the mining industry’s interests:
It’s the second time in as many years that the Executive Council has delayed mineral leases, although for different reasons. In 2011 the board delayed action after many private landowners said they were not aware the state held mineral rights under their land and that the state was about to allow mining companies to drill there. Despite sympathizing with the landowners’ plight, and delaying action for several months, the council eventually approved the 2011 leases in May this year.
This time the issue isn’t private property but what kind of impact drilling and other exploration activity might have on public and private lands, especially in sensitive areas near wetlands, trout streams, state parks and trails. Several of the latest proposed leases are in Lake County, near state parks and North Shore trout streams, said Matt Tyler, the Finland resident who has led the effort for environmental review before mineral leases are approved.
Every time the Executive Council votes to delay the letting of mineral leases is a delay to creating high-paying mining jobs. It’s also an opportunity for them to lie about what’s really motivating them. This year, the Executive Council, aka the DFL statewide officeholders, said that they wanted the Minnesota Court of Appeals to rule on whether an Environmental Assessment Worksheet should be done prior to letting the leases.
Last year, the Executive Council twice delayed the letting of leases under the premise that Arrowhead and Iron Range landowners didn’t know they didn’t own the mineral rights to their property. When the State Executive Council voted for delaying the leases, Prof. Kent Kaiser wrote an LTE scoffing at that notion while expressing his anger with the Twin Cities DFL:
This month, Minnesota’s State Executive Council, which includes the governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general and state auditor, voted to delay 77 leases to explore for copper and nickel on private lands in northern Minnesota.
This short-sighted action was initiated by Gov. Mark Dayton and Secretary of State Mark Ritchie. It was unfortunate for the job situation in the Northland, and I know many Minnesotans are terribly disappointed.
After all, the people of Minnesota own the rights to minerals in the state, including those under private land. Anyone from Northeastern Minnesota knows this; I remember learning this fact in elementary school.
The Twin Cities DFL will always get its way because they’d rather kill the mining industry outright. That isn’t speculation. The DFL has made their point exceptionally clear:
Conservation Minnesota, Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness and the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy are targeting the proposed PolyMet mine near Hoyt Lakes and the proposed Twin Metals mine near Ely.
The campaign includes the web site MiningTruth.org, a 40-page report examining mining in detail, a Facebook community, and four billboards along Interstate 35 between the Twin Cities and Duluth to reach summer travelers.
Those complaining that these organizations aren’t the DFL are arguing over semantics. Alida Messinger sits on Conservation Minnesota’s Board of Directors. People who’ve read LFR (and Shot in the Dark) know that Alida owns the DFL and ABM, otherwise known as the deceitful, smear campaign wing of the DFL:
Alida wants to kill precious metal mining before it starts. That isn’t speculation. That’s what the International Falls Journal reported. As disgusting as Twin Cities DFL politicians are, they pail in comparison with the cowardice of Iron Range DFL politicians. They’re the people who are supposed to stand up for their constituents. Since this delay, as with the other times the State Executive Council voted against the miners’ interest, Senators Tom Bakk, David Thomassoni, and Tom Saxhaug didn’t criticize the DFL members of the State Executive Committee. Ditto with Representatives Tom Anzelc, Carly Melin and Dave Dill.
These spineless wimps let the Twin Cities DFL elitists ruin the lives of Iron Range miners without the Iron Range DFL criticizing the elitists. It’s time that Iron Range voters threw out the Silent Six for not looking out for the Iron Range’s best interests.
Likewise, Iron Range voters shouldn’t vote DFL in the statewide elections, either. Gov. Dayton, Secretary of State Ritchie and State Auditor Rebecca Otto consistently vote against the miners’ interests. I’ll guarantee that electing a GOP-filled State Executive Council will prove to be a vote for the best interests of mining communities.
It’s that simple.
Tags: Mark Dayton, Mark Ritchie, Rebecca Otto, Alida Messinger, Conservation Minnesota, Militant Environmentalists, Twin Cities DFL, Iron Range, Tom Bakk, David Thomassoni, Tom Saxhaug, Tom Anzelc, Carly Melin, DFL, Iron Range DFL, Miners, Unions, MnGOP
This AP article says that 2 people have emerged as candidates to replace Tom Sorel as the next MnDOT Commissioner:
One finalist is Charlie Zelle, the president and chief executive officer of Jefferson Lines. The regional bus company operates in 13 states from North Dakota to Texas and has a sister charter company as well.
Zelle is a former investment banker who returned to Minnesota to run his family’s company. He also serves as the chairman of the Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce, giving him deep connections in the business community. He gained notice this summer for being among the Minnesota business executives to publicly advocate and contributing financially to the defeat of a constitutional amendment to permanently ban gay marriage.
The other finalist is Bernie Arseneau, the acting commissioner. He has worked at the department for three decades. An engineer, Arseneau took on a more visible role after the Interstate 35W bridge collapse by helping coordinate alternative traffic plans to compensate for the disruption of a key artery.
Based on recent news stories, the next Commissioner of MnDOT should expect to pay more attention to selling light rail construction and the subsidies that taxpayers will have to pay for the next half century.
It’s clear that environmentalists, including Gov. Dayton and Alida Messinger, don’t like people having the freedom of driving cars. Though Gov. Dayton has said he won’t push the 40-cent-a-gallon gas tax increase proposed by his Transportation Advisory Commission, he didn’t take the tax increase that would pay for light rail projects.
Light rail is a waste of the taxpayers’ money. Despite the progressives’ continuous sales pitch on LRT, LRT hasn’t caught on. What’s worst is that taxpayers will pay massive subsidies annually for the next fifty years on each of these policy excesses.
Any swing district DFL legislator that votes for tax increases that fund additional LRT projects must be defeated the next time they’re up for re-election. The taxpayers should take their frustration out on the DFL’s reckless spending on special interests’ projects.
John Boehner is failing. He’s playing President Obama’s game on President Obama’s court. He’s prosecuting the wrong case. Rather than discussing the terms of the fiscal cliff debate, Speaker Boehner should be talking about why Republicans’ pro-growth tax policies are America’s only hope for a variety of Obama-created ills.
First, Speaker Boehner should highlight the fact that President Clinton’s high tax rates didn’t trigger the great economy. He should remind the nation that it was Newt’s capital gains tax cuts that sent the economy into high gear. Prior to those tax cuts, the economy was doing ok. After cutting the capital gains tax, growth exploded.
Another thing that Speaker Boehner must do is remind people that Republicans’ insisting on balancing the federal budget helped strengthen the dollar, which led to a dramatic shrinking of America’s trade deficit. That especially affected gas prices.
Third, Speaker Boehner should shout from the rooftops that revenues during the Bush tax cuts were significantly bigger than revenues are today. If Speaker Boehner asked President Obama why he’s insisting on anti-growth policies that tamp the economy down rather than implementing new pro-growth policies that strengthen the economy, President Obama might well blow a gasket.
This is the debate we should start. This is the debate President Obama can’t win. This is the conversation that would expose President Obama’s motivation for imposing higher tax rates.
Rather than the pattern of proposal-counterproposal, then a counter offer to the counterproposal, with each side publicly stating that the other side needs to put forth a serious proposal, Speaker Boehner should ditch that pattern, especially the taunting language.
Instead, Speaker Boehner, followed by every Republican in Congress talking with their local newspapers and TV outlets about how cutting spending is what’s fair to taxpayers and how reforming the tax code, highlighted by fewer deductions and lower tax rates, would strengthen the economy.
Highlight the fact that this was the real reason why the economy was strong during the Clinton administration. Highlight the fact that the economy didn’t take off until Newt changed the trajectory of the debate.
President Obama is too arrogant to be frightened by that debate, which means Speaker Boehner should be able to turn this situation into a discussion on getting America’s economy going for the first time during President Obama’s administration.
With expensive utility bills, shrinking paychecks, high gas and grocery prices and unacceptably high unemployment rates, the indictment against President Obama’s mishandling of the economy should be lengthy and powerful.
Finally, he should unleash Paul Ryan. Speaker Boehner should insist on a televised fiscal cliff summit, with Ryan leading the prosecution of the case against President Obama’s reckless spending. Dave Camp should prosecute the case for why the GOP tax reform plan will strengthen the economy.
GOP senators and governors should take part in this summit, too. One tactic President Obama has overplayed is saying that ‘we can talk about that’ on a variety of policies, then dropping that position the minute he’s out of the room. Republicans should tell him that implementing a pro-growth economic plan is non-negotiable.
Finally, make the case that raising the top marginal tax rates won’t affect the Warren Buffetts of the world because their income comes from investments, not wages. Make the case that raising the top marginal tax rates will hurt small businesses, not the evil Wall Street fatcats President Obama always talks about.
President Obama’s policies are failing. Speaker Boehner’s ineptitude in highlighting those failures has the fiscal cliff conversation heading in the wrong direction. It’s time to change the direction of that conversation.
Tags: Fiscal Cliff, John Boehner, Debate, Fiscal Cliff Summit, Paul Ryan, Dave Camp, John Kasich, Bobby Jindal, Marco Rubio, Tax Reform, Spending Reform, GOP, President Obama, Unemployment, Deficits, Gas Prices, Electric Bills, Groceries, Inflation, Median Household Income, Democrats
I don’t think Rep. Keith Ellison understood that he admitted that President Obama’s policies aren’t working but that’s what he admitted in saying this:
The middle class has already been forced to get by with less. The wealthiest 2% of Americans have continued to see their income rise as middle-class wages remained stagnant.
Actually, Rep. Ellison is lying or ill-informed when he says that middle-class wages have remained stagnant. They’ve actually dropped by $4,300 since President Obama took office. He’s right that “the middle class has been forced to get by with less.”
Thanks to President Obama’s counterproductive economic policies, families are paying higher electric bills, higher gas prices while paying more for groceries. Meanwhile, President Obama’s policies have led to higher unemployment and shrinking wages.
The latest proposal by Republicans fails to meet the basic test of fairness. Over the past two years, Republicans have forced cuts of more than $1.7 trillion for vital investments such as helping children get a college education and helping seniors heat their homes. But they have refused to ask the wealthy to contribute even a little more.
Rep. Ellison needs a refresher course on spinning. Republicans haven’t cut anything. They’ve cut the projected rate of spending growth a little but they haven’t cut spending. Only progressives think that slowing the rate of future spending from unprecedented levels is a destructive cut that’s sure to wipe out the middle class.
Shame on Rep. Ellison for peddling that crap. President Obama’s EPA has led to the closing of 100 coal-fired power plants. President Obama’s loans to the rich fatcats who were his biggest campaign bundlers in 2008 was disgusting enough. That they got these loans right before going bankrupt and laying off thousands of factory workers.
Has Rep. Ellison criticized President Obama for destroying the lives of those middle class families while giving Obama’s fatcats billions of dollars in taxpayer money? No, he hasn’t.
Might Rep. Ellison’s definition of fairness be subject to situational modifications? I can’t rule that out.
Unfortunately, the Republican plan doesn’t even touch Americans’ most immediate concern: creating good jobs. It’s time to focus on fairness. The Republican plan fails that test.
Rep. Ellison voted for the biggest job-killing legislation in U.S. history when he voted for the ACA. As a direct result of the ACA, workers are getting cut from full-time to part-time status. Wages are dropping. Other companies are laying hundreds of people off.
That Rep. Ellison has the audacity to say Republican plans won’t create good-paying jobs is testament to his willingness to criticize those he disagrees with based on his assumptions. What’s worse is that Rep. Ellison has repeatedly proven that he isn’t willing to criticize policies that he voted for even if it’s proven that they hurt the economy.
Rep. Ellison’s worldview is skewed because he’s viewing it through rose-colored glasses.
UPDATE: Welcome Hotair followers. After you read this article, make the time to read this article about a major breaking scandal on a college campus.