WILLIAMSON – My one question that no one will answer.
LEADS: SHADICK – Abortion vote; YORK – BO’S foggy religion; STRASSEL – Carly’s card; SONNENFELD – CEO Fiorino; MURRAY – Problems with kids; STEPHENS – Brit’s omen; SEITZ – Cooked intel.
THE HILLARY: NY POST – “You got no evidence.”
PA – SNYDER – Ups & Downs.
END NOTE: GALLUP – 75% see corruption.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson says Islam is antithetical to the Constitution, and he doesn’t believe that a Muslim should be elected president.
Carson, a devout Christian, says a president’s faith should matter to voters if it runs counter to the values and principles of America.
“It wasn’t people from Sweden who blew up the World Trade Center, Jake.” Trump
Kevin Williamson, NRO: “The Question No Candidate Will Answer”
“. . .Here’s my question, which nobody ever really asks: ‘Given that a small number of federal expenditures — Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, national security, and interest on the debt — typically constitute about 80 percent of all federal spending, and given that we are not going to cut non-defense discretionary spending to zero, there is no mathematically plausible way to balance the budget without: 1) cutting spending on Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and/or national security; and/or 2) raising taxes. So, what’s it going to be: spending cuts in popular programs, higher taxes, or deficits forever? And before you give your answer, I’d like you all to know that standing behind each of you is a man with a Taser and instructions to use it on the first person whose answer relies on the Growth Fairy — lookin’ at you, Jeb — or the Waste, Fraud, and Abuse Fairy. Go.’ “I have had the opportunity to put that question privately to a fairly large number of Republican grandees, including some on that debate stage, and I have never received a truly persuasive answer. If any of the 2016 gang would like to provide one, I am sure that National Review would love to see it.
“We conservatives, and the Republican elected officials who are, lest we forget, our only real channel of political action, play a game of double make-believe: They’re smart enough to know what the fiscal realities are, but they’re also smart enough to know that campaigning on those realities is a loser, and we understand their dilemma and don’t expect actual policies to look very much like campaign documents, anyway, so everybody ends up pretending that the choice is between competing non-viable budget plans rather than between wishful thinking and reality. My friend Larry Kudlow sometimes wincingly describes the realist school of budget-hawkery as the ‘eat your spinach’ faction or the ‘root-canal guys,’ and no doubt there is real political wisdom informing that view. But Uncle Stupid desperately needs a root canal, and no amount of wishful thinking or happy talk about self-financing tax cuts is going to change that. . .” www.nationalreview.com/article/424312/question-candidates-wont-answer
LEADS. . .
Lana Shadick, Breitbart: “U.S. House Votes to Make Killing Babies Born Alive During Abortion a Crime”
“The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill on Friday that would protect babies born alive during abortion by making it a federal crime to kill the baby after it is born, either by an overt act, or through gross negligence. The bill, entitled the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act was introduced by Congressman Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ)
H.R. 3504, passed by an even larger margin than H.R. 3134 – 248 to 177. H.R. 3134 is the bill passed in the U.S. House on September 18th which defunds Planned Parenthood America and its affiliates and clinics for one year, as reported by Breitbart Texas. Every Republican member voted for H.R. 3504. They were joined by five Democrats including Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX) . . “
Byron York, Washington Examiner: “The never-clearing fog around Obama’s religion”
Religion is one more chip for Obama’s next job. It always has been. And Islam, although Mohammed probably never existed, is a huge block of voters who believe that he did. . .
“. . . Start with the fact that 61 percent of those surveyed failed to give the correct answer identifying Obama as a Protestant. Among those who failed, the largest single group is the 29 percent who said Obama is a Muslim. Who are they?
“More men (32 percent) said Obama is a Muslim than women (25 percent). More whites (33 percent) said he is a Muslim than non-whites (20 percent). More people 50 and older (34 percent) than under 50 (24 percent). More people who never attended college (36 percent) and make less than $50,000 a year (32 percent) than people who did attend college (23 percent) and make more than $50,000 (26 percent).
“As far as political affiliation goes, 43 percent of self-identified Republicans in the poll said Obama is a Muslim, while an additional 10 percent said they had no opinion. Among independents, 29 percent said Obama is a Muslim, while an additional 16 percent said they had no opinion. And among Democrats, 15 percent said he is a Muslim, while an additional 14 percent said they had no opinion. (It’s not clear what, if anything, the “no opinion” respondents know about Obama’s religion; it probably would have been better had CNN given them a “don’t know” option instead of “no opinion.”)
Also – Uploaded on Sep 7, 2008: Sen. Barack Obama slips up on ABC’s This Week with George Stephanopoulos and refers to “my muslim faith”.
Also – Pamela Geller, “Ben Carson: USA Shouldn’t Elect a Muslim President”
Also – Julia Hahn, “Ben Carson, Donald Trump Take Stand against Sharia as Americans Brace for Migrant Influx”
Also – Spencer, Robert (2007) The Truth About Muhammed. Washington DC: Regnery.
Kimberly Strassel, WSJ: “The Card Carly Doesn’t Play”
“Most political women pander to gender, but Fiorina wants to make it on the merits
“. . . Carly Fiorina isn’t Margaret Thatcher, just as her Republican rivals aren’t Ronald Reagan. Yet Ms. Fiorina has a bit of Thatcher about her—and in one way in particular. She isn’t a woman running for president. She’s a presidential contender who happens to be a woman.
“That’s new for the GOP. Women have made remarkable inroads everywhere, but there still may be no tougher realm than Republican politics. This isn’t, as the press suggests, because conservative voters are old fogies who’d chain their wives to sinks full of dirty dishes. It’s because conservative voters demand more from their candidates.
“Women Democrats pander on gender issues—abortion, birth control, the myth of unequal pay. They promise female voters special handouts. They pitch their womanhood as a qualification for office. And their base loves it.
“Women Republicans don’t get to engage in such vote-buying. They are expected to be principled, knowledgeable, serious. They are expected to propose policies—sometimes unpopular ones—designed to help all Americans. And, because the general public (both right and left) is still new to the idea of a woman president, they are expected to do all this twice as well as men. . .”
Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, Politico: “Why I Still Think Fiorina Was a Terrible CEO”
“. . . Here are the facts: In the five years that Fiorina was at Hewlett Packard, the company lost over half its value. It’s true that many tech companies had trouble during this period of the Internet bubble collapse, some falling in value as much as 27 percent; but HP under Fiorina fell 55 percent. During those years, stocks in companies like Apple and Dell rose. Google went public, and Facebook was launched. The S&P 500 yardstick on major U.S. firms showed only a 7 percent drop. Plenty good was happening in U.S. industry and in technology.
“It was Fiorina’s failed leadership that brought her company down. After an unsuccessful attempt to catch up to IBM’s growth in IT services by buying PricewaterhouseCooper’s consulting business (PwC, ironically, ended up going to IBM instead), she abruptly abandoned the strategic goal of expanding IT services and consulting and moved into heavy metal. At a time that devices had become a low margin commodity business, Fiorina bought for $25 billion the dying Compaq computer company, which was composed of other failed businesses. Unsurprisingly, the Compaq deal never generated the profits Fiorina hoped for, and HP’s stock price fell by half. The only stock pop under Fiorina’s reign was the 7 percent jump the moment she was fired following a unanimous board vote. After the firing, HP shuttered or sold virtually all Fiorina had bought.
“During the debate, Fiorina countered that she wasn’t a failure because she doubled revenues. That’s an empty measurement. What good is doubling revenue by acquiring a huge company if you’re not making any profit from it? The goals of business are to raise profits, increase employment and add value. During Fiorina’s tenure, thanks to the Compaq deal, profits fell, employees were laid off and value plummeted. Fiorina was paid over $100 million for this accomplishment. . .” http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2015/09/carly-fiorina-ceo-jeffrey-sonnenfeld-2016-213163
Charles Murray, The Federalist: “The Trouble with Kids Today: A review of “Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis,” by Robert D. Putnam”
“. . .Why Putnam’s Answers Don’t Answer
“. . . I must record my own judgment that everything Putnam recommends could be implemented full-bore—far beyond any reasonable hope—and little, alas, would change in the long term. The opportunity gap is driven by larger forces, which his policy prescriptions cannot do much about. . .
“First, the standard interventions are aiming at a relatively unimportant target. (emph added, jb) Children’s personal characteristics are the product of three sources: shared environment, non-shared environment, and parents’ genes. Government programs can affect only one of those three—shared environment—which, for the most important outcomes, usually has the least effect of the three.
“You may not be familiar with the terms ‘shared’ and ‘non-shared’ environment. The shared environment includes such things as a family’s income and social status, quality of the schools, and parenting practices. The non-shared environment is the sum of random differences such as events in the womb that affect one sibling differently from another, an injury or illness after birth that affects one sibling and not the other, and peer groups that siblings don’t share. Some unknown but probably large proportion of the non-shared environment is simply statistical noise.
“Aren’t the components of the shared environment the important causes of how well children do in life, as Putnam himself is convinced? For some immediate outcomes, yes; for ultimate outcomes, no. Consider the results of a comprehensive meta-analysis of more than 2,000 twin studies published in Nature Genetics in May of this year. The shared environment played a large role in the religiosity of children (explaining 44 percent and 35 percent of the variance in the two estimates presented by the study), and a substantial role in explaining problems in parent-child relationships (33 percent for both estimates).
“But when it comes to the outcomes that Putnam associates with the opportunity gap, the contribution of the shared environment is modest. For “higher-level cognitive functions” (IQ), the estimates of the role of the shared environment were just 24 percent and 17 percent of the variance. For educational attainment: 27 percent and 13 percent. For conduct disorders (antisocial and aggressive behavior): 18 percent and 15 percent.
“That’s not the whole story. Genes and environment interact, among other things. But my point is simple and survives the complications: the roster of standard interventions to reduce the opportunity gap is almost entirely focused on factors that have modest causal roles (emph added jb). Furthermore, a program lasting at most a few hours a day can influence only a small proportion of that modest causal role. The evaluation literature for interventions necessarily yields meager long-term impact even for the best-executed program because the potential effect to begin with is so small. If policy scholars are serious about having a major impact on the shared environment, they should be advocating adoption at birth and high-quality orphanages. They don’t.
“IQ Explains a Lot
“Second, the opportunity gap exists alongside a substantial ability gap. Most of the graphs in ‘Our Kids’ show the results for parents with at least a college degree versus those for parents with no more than 12 years of school and a high-school diploma. What are the IQs of those two groups? In the 1979 cohort of the National Longitudinal Study of Youth (NLSY), replicating Putnam’s assignment rules, the mean IQ of the college group was 23 points higher than that of the high school group.
“In case you’re wondering, that’s not a function of race. Among non-Latino whites, the difference was 22 points. In statistical terms, those are differences of about 1.5 standard deviations. For the population as a whole, the average person in the high-school group was at the twenty-ninth IQ percentile while the average person in the college group was at the eighty-fourth percentile. Since children’s IQ is correlated with parental IQ, it is not surprising to learn that the means of the children of the high school and college groups are also separated—by about 19 points in the same NLSY cohort. Recall the modest role of the shared environment in producing that difference.
“Again, my underlying point is simple. IQ has a substantial direct correlation with measures of success in life, and it is also correlated with a variety of other characteristics that promote success—perseverance, deferred gratification, good parenting, and the aspects of personality that are variously called “emotional intelligence” or “grit.” The correlations are not large, but many modest individual correlations produce large differences in life outcomes when the means of two groups are separated by as large a gap as separates both parents and children of America’s working and upper-middle classes. . .”
Bret Stephens, WSJ: “Britain’s Unsettling Omen”
“What Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party win means for the West
“. . .Last year the United Kingdom nearly came undone after David Cameron’s government misjudged the politics of the Scottish referendum on independence. The Scots voted to stay in the U.K. by a 55%-45% margin, then turned around and rewarded the Scottish National Party—which had led the drive for independence—with a whopping 56 seats in Parliament in May’s general election.
“That election was seen as a vindication for Mr. Cameron, who defied the polls to win a slender parliamentary majority—330 of Parliament’s 650 seats. But it was not an overwhelming British vote of confidence in Conservative governance. Even the hapless John Major took 336 seats in his unexpected 1992 victory.
“In other words, what separates Britain from the sundry furies of nationalism and nutterism are six seats in Parliament. What happens when there’s the inevitable recession, the inevitable sex scandal, the inevitable Tory ructions over membership in the European Union?
“Then there is the wider political context in which Mr. Corbyn now finds his place. We are living through an era of bitter, and usually justified, disillusion with political establishments. In Europe, that establishment trumpeted a new era of multicultural transnational technocracy but hasn’t delivered sustained economic growth or low unemployment for nearly four decades. In the U.S., Barack Obama has presided over a feeble recovery while relying on obedient Democrats and a pliant media to jam through his domestic and foreign policy agendas over broad popular objections.
“The response to this political highhandedness on both sides of the Atlantic is rage: the rage of people who sense that they aren’t even being paid lip service by a political class that is as indifferent to public opinion as it is unaccountable to the law. . .”
Blake Seitz, FreeBeacon: “Steve Hayes: Cooked Intel on Islamic State Could Be Biggest Scandal of Obama’s Presidency”
“Weekly Standard senior writer Steve Hayes said Friday that the alleged manipulation of intelligence about the Islamic State (IS, also ISIS) by senior officials could be the biggest scandal of President Obama’s presidency.
“‘You had analysts who provided information, provided assessments that said that ISIS was actually a growing threat and a real danger, and those threats were systematically rewritten to downplay the threat from ISIS,’ Hayes said on Fox’s Special Report with Bret Baier.
“‘I think this is potentially the biggest scandal of the Obama administration,’ Hayes said later.
“The scandal in question has simmered under the surface for some time before an article in The Daily Beast brought matters to a boil. The article revealed that 50 intelligence analysts had formally complained that their reports about IS and al Nusra, an al Qaeda-affiliated terrorist group, were being altered by senior officials to downplay the groups’ strength. . .”
THE HILLARY . . .
“. . . On CNN’s “The Situation Room” last week, she faced questions about the claim by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie that she should face criminal charges for using a private email account and server to conduct official State Department business, including emails with highly classified information.
“Clinton burst into laughter.
“She kept up the giggling when asked about the chance that hackers from Russia or China broke into her server to glean national-security secrets. And then gave the lawyerly answer, “There’s no evidence of that.”
“Well, not yet — the FBI’s only started looking for it, years after the breach might’ve occurred.
“Anyway, Clinton went on: “This is, you know, this is overheated rhetoric, baseless charges trying to somehow, you know, gain a footing in the debate and in the primary. And it really doesn’t deserve any comment.”
“Baseless charges? Yeah, the FBI makes it a habit to investigate those. . .”
PA . . .
Sy Snyder, PoliticsPA: “9/18 Ups & Downs”
“Search warrants, party endorsements and public budget frustration. See who made this week’s list!
“Kathleen Kane. Whenever your office is being raided by detectives, it’s been a bad week. Especially when this is the third time a warrant has been issued against you in the last year. She also had incredible difficulty explaining why she is fighting the release of the lewd emails that she says she wants to reveal. As if her situation couldn’t get any worse, we also learned that the State Senate and Gov. Wolf appear to be devising their own plan to remove her from office. Somehow this seemingly never-ending saga just keeps getting more complex.
“John Fetterman. When two high-profile Democrats are already engaged in a competitive primary, you would expect the announcement of a third candidate to gain less attention, particularly when said candidate is the Mayor of a small town. Instead, Fetterman’s unique personality made him stand out and he received coverage from several national outlets. It would be challenging (though not impossible) for Fetterman to win, yet it is very likely that he will have a significant effect on the Democratic contest.
“Tom Wolf. ‘I got nothing.’ That pretty much sums up how Governor Wolf feels at the end of this week. We began with the Republicans in the legislature threatening to pass stopgap spending bills and daring Wolf to veto them. The Gov responded that he wouldn’t sign anything without at least the framework of a budget agreement. When Wolf presented his liquor privatization and pension reform plans and didn’t get an offer in return, he showed more frustration than he ever had before in public life. It seems that the Governor doesn’t feel this is a honest negotiation and he’s not sure what he can do about it.
“John Rafferty. Last week, Rafferty’s primary opponent State Rep. Todd Stephens won the support of his caucus leaders. Now, State Sen. Rafferty secured the endorsement of Joe Scarnati and Jake Corman and will have another twenty-four of his colleagues show up to fundraise with him. One of the most intriguing storylines of this weekend’s GOP fall committee meeting, in fact, is that both candidates will be giving speeches to those assembled.
“Marcel Groen. Speaking of party committees, the Democratic Party has a new Chairman. After a long battle with Gov. Tom Wolf, Jim Burn finally announced his retirement last July. Last weekend, the Montgomery County Chair Marcel Groen (Wolf’s favored successor) was chosen as the new leader of the PA Democratic Party. Groen helped turn Montgomery County from purple to blue and his colleagues hope he can do the same for the entire Keystone State.”
END NOTE . . .
Gallup: “75% in U.S. See Widespread Government Corruption”
“WASHINGTON, D.C. — Three in four Americans (75%) last year perceived corruption as widespread in the country’s government. This figure is up from two in three in 2007 (67%) and 2009 (66%).
While the numbers have fluctuated slightly since 2007, the trend has been largely stable since 2010. However, the percentage of U.S. adults who see corruption as pervasive has never been less than a majority in the past decade, which has had no shortage of controversies from the U.S. Justice Department’s firings of U.S. attorneys to the IRS scandal. . .”