CBO acknowledges that unemployment insurance benefits are a cause of higher unemployment

Things are pretty grim: "The rate of unemployment in the United States has exceeded 8 percent since February 2009, making the past three years the longest stretch of high unemployment in this country since the Great Depression. CBO projects that the unemployment rate will remain above 8 percent until 2014. The share of unemployed people who have been looking for work for more than six months—referred to as the long-term unemployed—topped 40 percent in December 2009 and has remained above that level ever since."

What caused the higher unemployment rate?

Weak demand for goods and services, as a result of the recession and its aftermath, which results in weak demand for workers;
Mismatches between would-be employers’ needs and the skills or location of the unemployed;
Incentives for people to stay in the labor force and continue searching for work that result from extensions of unemployment insurance benefits; and
The erosion of unemployed workers’ skills and the belief of some employers that people who have been unemployed for a long time would be low-quality workers (a phenomenon sometimes called stigma).

I would have phrased the first two of these points differently. There are always jobs, though it depends on what price. The question is why people aren't taking the jobs that they can get.


Justice Department attempts to lose Homosexual marriage cases by default

So much for Obama's 2008 campaign promise. From Politico:

The Obama Administration said Friday it is declining to defend the government in yet another lawsuit challenging federal laws limiting recognition of same-sex marriage.

Attorney General Eric Holder sent Congressional leaders a letter formally notifying them that the Justice Department will not defend a case challenging the constitutionality of a federal law preventing same-sex spouses of military personnel from receiving veterans' benefits. . . . .


Are the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer?: Exploding a myth



A psychiatrist analyzes Media Matters' David Brock

From Dr. Keith Ablow at Fox News:

In a somewhat ominous and psychologically violent use of language, he described himself as a “right-wing hit man.” . . .
when his book "The Seduction of Hillary Rodham" wasn’t embraced by politicians on the right, Brock grew bitter. He then recanted a great deal of what he had written about the Clintons, exposed one of his confidential sources (despite this being journalistically unethical) and began to cultivate a left-wing following. . . . .
Indeed, even as a young man, Brock was so needy of attention—so desperate for regard from an audience (and perhaps any audience)—that he admits, "I demonized my enemies on the staff..." at his college newspaper while he was a student at Berkeley. . . . .
Any psychiatrist will tell you, however, that a person who holds two diametrically opposed views of the world, who speaks of himself as a hit man, who encourages a “war” on a group of journalists (in this case, Fox News), who has by his own admission been a drug user, who has been delusional and who reportedly is playing with guns and thinks there are assassins out to get him...needs some help. . . . .

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Regulation is out of control in the US

From The Economist magazine:

A Florida law requires vending-machine labels to urge the public to file a report if the label is not there. The Federal Railroad Administration insists that all trains must be painted with an “F” at the front, so you can tell which end is which. Bureaucratic busybodies in Bethesda, Maryland, have shut down children’s lemonade stands because the enterprising young moppets did not have trading licences. The list goes hilariously on. . . .

Consider the Dodd-Frank law of 2010. Its aim was noble: to prevent another financial crisis. Its strategy was sensible, too: improve transparency, stop banks from taking excessive risks, prevent abusive financial practices and end “too big to fail” by authorising regulators to seize any big, tottering financial firm and wind it down. This newspaper supported these goals at the time, and we still do. But Dodd-Frank is far too complex, and becoming more so. At 848 pages, it is 23 times longer than Glass-Steagall, the reform that followed the Wall Street crash of 1929. Worse, every other page demands that regulators fill in further detail. Some of these clarifications are hundreds of pages long. Just one bit, the “Volcker rule”, which aims to curb risky proprietary trading by banks, includes 383 questions that break down into 1,420 subquestions. . . . .

of the 400 rules it mandates, only 93 have been finalized. . . .

Next year the number of federally mandated categories of illness and injury for which hospitals may claim reimbursement will rise from 18,000 to 140,000. There are nine codes relating to injuries caused by parrots, and three relating to burns from flaming water-skis. . . . .

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Coast-to-Coast AM

I will be on Coast-to-Coast AM at the beginning of the show in the news segment. I will be on for about 2 minutes around 1:08 or so AM EST/ 10:08 PM PST.

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Geithner: "We don't have a definitive solution."

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This gun-free zone sign will really work for Mexico

From CBS Houston:

President Felipe Calderon on Thursday unveiled a “No More Weapons!” billboard made with crushed firearms and placed near the U.S. border. He urged the United States to stop the flow of weapons into Mexico.

The billboard, which is in English and weighs 3 tons, was placed near an international bridge in Ciudad Juarez and can be seen from the United States.

Calderon said the billboard’s letters were made with weapons seized by local, state and federal authorities.

“Dear friends of the United States, Mexico needs your help to stop this terrible violence that we’re suffering,” Calderon said in English during the unveiling ceremony. . . .


Obama made a lot of wealth Democrats a lot wealthier

Here is yet another example.

Jim Rogers, the co-chairman and lead fundraiser for the Democratic National Convention host-committee, is well versed in the art of political cronyism.

Rogers, the CEO of Duke Energy Corp., one of the largest utility corporations in the country, has given generously to Democratic politicians over the years. Along with his wife, Mary Anne, he has contributed more than $210,000 to Democratic candidates and committees since 2008, more than double what the couple has given to Republicans. Of that figure, more than $150,000 went to the Democratic National Committee (DNC); $19,200 went to President Obama.

Rogers is co-chairing the host committee with Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx (D), who was elected to a second term in November 2011. Rogers and his wife both contributed $8,000 to Foxx’s campaign, the maximum allowed under state law. . . .

Just as Rogers has helped fund Democratic politicians, they, in turn, have helped steer massive amounts of federal funding to Duke Energy. The 2009 stimulus package, for instance, was a boon for the company: Duke received federal grants totaling $230.4 million for a number of “green” energy projects including “smart grid” development and wind energy storage.

According to Recovery.gov, Duke created 196.6 jobs as a result of the grants. . . .


Ted Nugent Speaks to Piers Morgan about Gun Control

Obama moving to kill Armed Pilots Program?

Fiscal year 2013: Cuts, Consolidations, and Savings Budget of the U.S. Government
Office of Management and Budget (www.Budget.gov)

Obama's 2013 budget looks to cut the Federal Flight Deck Officer (FFDO) from $25 million to $12 million. But has almost no cut in the Federal Air Marshal Service. From CNN:

President Barack Obama's budget ax is falling hard on a program that allows pilots to carry handguns in the cockpit as a last line of defense against terrorists.

Obama's proposed 2013 budget cuts in half funds for the Federal Flight Deck Officer (FFDO) program. The current budget of $25 million a year -- which goes for such things as conducting background checks, training the pilots, and periodic gun proficiency tests and retraining, in addition to administrative costs -- would be cut to $12 million.

The thousands of armed pilots, who greatly outnumber the better-known federal air marshals, volunteer for the job, train at federal academies and are deputized to use their weapons in the cockpit. They call themselves the "single most cost-effective counter-terrorism measure" the government has taken.

The federal government spends about $15 a flight for FFDOs, as armed pilots are called, compared to $3,000 per flight for federal air marshals, said Mike Karn, vice president of the Federal Flight Deck Officers Association. Those numbers are based on costs of the respective programs divided by the number of flights covered by armed pilots and air marshals.

As recently as last March, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano voiced support for the program, agreeing with Rep. Chip Cravaack, R-Minnesota, a former airline pilot and FFDO, that it was a vital part of the country's layer defenses.

But in the budget documents released Monday, administration officials said security measures put in place since 2001, such as locked cockpit doors and 100% screening of airline passengers, "have greatly lowered the chances of unauthorized cockpit access."

The proposed budget also cuts Federal Air Marshal Service funds almost 4%, to $927 million. It is unclear whether that cut will result in fewer air marshals. The number of air marshals is classified. . . .

My understanding is that there are currently about 10,000 to 12,000 FFDOs out of about 60,000 commercial pilots flying large planes and 90,000 flying all size commercial passenger planes.

Representative Cravaack Grills Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano

Rep. Cravaack: Is your intention that this program be phased out?
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano: I think that as the budget request shows it is our intention to reduce it, yes. But we have not predicted its demise.

Thanks to Tracy Price for the links.

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Google develops code to bypass Apple's privacy safeguards

This is "do no evil"? Google develops code so that it can track "the Web-browsing habits of people who intended for that kind of monitoring to be blocked." That isn't wrong? Apparently one lesson is to stay away from the New York Times website. From the WSJ:

The Google code was spotted by Stanford researcher Jonathan Mayer and independently confirmed by a technical adviser to the Journal, Ashkan Soltani, who found that ads on 22 of the top 100 websites installed the Google tracking code on a test computer, and ads on 23 sites installed it on an iPhone browser.

The technique reaches far beyond those websites, however, because once the coding was activated, it could enable Google tracking across the vast majority of websites. Three other online-ad companies were found using similar techniques: Vibrant Media Inc., WPP PLC's Media Innovation Group LLC and Gannett Co.'s PointRoll Inc.

In Google's case, the findings appeared to contradict some of Google's own instructions to Safari users on how to avoid tracking. Until recently, one Google site told Safari users they could rely on Safari's privacy settings to prevent tracking by Google. Google removed that language from the site Tuesday night. . . .

UPDATE: Amazing, Google apparently did the same thing to Microsoft.


Obama administration explains whether the health care taxes are a tax or not

"Former NY governor to Manhattan DA: drop ‘unusually cruel’ gun charges against Marine"

Here is an update on one of the stories where a permit holder accidentally carried a concealed handgun in NYC. From the Daily Caller:

. . . Jerome visited New York City in September with thousands of dollars worth of jewelry that he intended to sell. He brought a gun for protection, mistakenly believing that his Indiana concealed carry permit would be honored in New York.

After voluntarily asking security personnel at the Empire State Building if he could check the gun, he was arrested — for the first time in his life — and spent two days in jail.

The original charges against Jerome would have resulted in a three and a half year mandatory minimum sentence, despite the fact that he had no criminal history.

During an appearance on WOR Radio, Paterson encouraged Vance to drop the charges.

“There is a section of the criminal procedure law,” said Paterson, “where a prosecutor just feels that it’s not in the best interest of justice to prosecute. I would recommend and suggest that they read that section over.”

“I think it’s just unusually cruel for somebody who has no criminal record and served his country as a Marine,” said the former governor. “And I think that makes the case closed.” . . .

Attorney Mark Bederow, who is representing Jerome, released correspondence with the district attorney’s office this week, revealing that the government has offered Jerome a reduced charge: a Class A misdemeanor with a $1,000 fine and 10 days of community service. But Bederow and Jerome would prefer that the case be dropped altogether.


The US will hit the debt limit by mid-October

Well, this should keep a few politicians in Washington DC right before the election. Didn't Obama promise that the agreement last year would put off the next battle until after the 2012 election? I wonder how the additional increase in debt from extending the unemployment insurance and the Social Security tax cut going to change this calculation. From the Washington Examiner:

The United States Department of Treasury will reach the the statutory limit it is allowed to borrow money before election day, according to a new study by Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio., former director of the U.S. Office of Management and Budget.

“Following the contentious debt ceiling last August, President Obama promised that he would take action to address the country’s fiscal crisis. He has failed to do that," Portman said. "In fact, his new budget increases spending and projects that Washington will be hitting the debt ceiling again in mid-October – burning through a $2.1 trillion debt limit increase in just over 14 months."

Portman's office notes that according to Obama's budget, total debt subject to the statutory debt will reach limit will reach $16.334 trillion by September 30, 2012. This is just $60 billion below the 16,394,000,000 debt limit. Since the federal government is adding to the national debt at a rate of $132 billion a month, the debt ceiling is on schedule to be reached by October 15, 2012. . . .

Of course this wouldn't have been a problem if Obama had kept this promise:

In an interview with Atlanta's local Fox affiliate WAGA-TV President Obama explains why he was unable to cut the deficit in half in his first term, a promise he made as a candidate.

Obama was lobbed the question by a sympathetic reporter who said he is getting "pelted in the media" for making a campaign promise he did not keep.

"Well we're not there because this recession turned out to be a lot deeper than any of us realized," Obama said about his inability to cut the deficit in half. . . .

I have a whole book that is forthcoming in about 10 days that examines this claim by Obama that he was surprised by how bad things were.


New Fox News piece: David Brock, Media Matters and gun control hypocrisy

My newest piece at Fox News starts this way:

David, say it isn't so!
The news from the Daily Caller website is surprising: David Brock, the founder of Media Matters, had a personal assistant illegally publicly carry a concealed handgun in the District of Columbia in order "to protect Brock from threats.” Few organizations have declared their opposition to gun ownership or concealed carry laws as strongly as Media Matters.
The group's opposition to guns has largely been a “scorched earth” approach, demonizing supporters of gun ownership and concealed handgun laws.
According to Media Matters, laws letting law-abiding citizens carry concealed handguns for protection are "dangerous." They assert these citizens "endanger" police officers and "compromise public safety." And derisively refer to the “cult of victimhood,” where crime victims and defensive gun uses are pointed at to justify gun ownership. They claim that it is a “myth” that concealed handguns reduce crime and label those who disagree “extremist”. . . .

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Daily Kos is trying to get Left wing Democrats to vote in Republican Primary for Santorum

Would this get attention if Republicans were doing this to Democrats? From the Daily Kos:

It's time for us to take an active role in the GOP nomination process. That's right, it's time for those of us who live in open primary and caucus states—Michigan, North Dakota, Vermont and Tennessee in the next three weeks—to head out and cast a vote for Rick Santorum.
Why would we do such a crazy thing? Lots of great reasons! . . .

Several of the contests have produced razor-thin margins of victory. Rick Santorum won Iowa by 34 votes, Mitt Romney "won" Maine by 194 votes. It won't take many of us to swing contests the way we want them to swing. . . . .

It's a no-brainer! The following states have completely open contests coming up:
2/28: Michigan (Primary)
3/6: North Dakota (caucus)
3/6: Tennessee (primary)
3/6: Vermont (primary)
If you live in one of those states, pledge to participate in Operation Hilarity by voting or caucusing for Rick Santorum. . . .

Apparently, the media is doing its best also.

Chris Matthews: "Steve Schmidt, my friend, you talk to a lot of Republicans out there. Are they aware that the media is basically rooting for Santorum out of sheer fear of the ennui, the boredom that will set in if it looks like Romney locks this thing up? At the moment he locks this thing up we face a long, dull summer of Mitt Romney."

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Media Matter's dishonest attacks on Fox News

Hiring detectives to spy on Fox News employees? Stake out Fox News employees' homes? Using a pseudonym (a "front group") to hide its identity when dealing with the news media? Discussing doing actions that it has attacked others for? Media Matters From Fox News:

The report cited a September 2009 document from Media Matters contributor Karl Frisch to Media Matters bosses David Brock and Eric Burns.
It's unclear to what extent the organization, a 501(c)3 tax-exempt nonprofit group, followed through on the detailed suggestions, but they would appear to comport with Brock's early 2011 announcement that he planned to prosecute a "war on Fox."
The tactics floated by Frisch were likened to a "presidential-style campaign," one which he hoped would "discredit and embarrass the network."
He suggested hiring "trackers" to "stake out" events with Fox News employees, sending "anti-Fox News literature" to employees' homes and even convincing director Michael Moore to make a documentary about the network. Frisch also suggested establishing a "front group" of shareholders to target parent company News Corporation.
At least one of the ideas appears to have come to fruition -- a suggestion that Media Matters publish an anti-Fox News book under Brock's name. "The Fox Effect," co-written by Brock and the Media Matters organization, is due for release next week. . . .

Media Matters appears to have also "dispatched trackers to events featuring Fox News employees."

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A reason to worry about vote fraud:

From the PEW center:

- Approximately 24 million—one of every eight—active voter registrations in the United States are no longer valid or are significantly inaccurate.
- More than 1.8 million deceased individuals are listed as active voters.
- Approximately 2.75 million people have active registrations in more than one state.


More evidence how Google searches can be distorted

This is pretty scary. From Fox News:

A new website with a very off-color description of Mitt Romney could create a serious image problem for the Republican presidential candidate. Reputation management experts call it “image-jacking” -- and Google says it's out of the company's hands.
Rick Santorum was the first to suffer from a “Google-bomb”: the SpreadingSantorum.com website created by sex columnist Dan Savage that offers a repulsive description of the candidate. Romney may be the latest to suffer from such repugnant manipulation of the Internet, but he won’t be last, said Reputation Management expert Kenneth Wisnefski.
“The more attention such sideshow distractions receive only takes away from politicians' ability to get their message out,” Wisnefski said. The spreading problem could affect candidates’ ability to connect with new voters.
A Google bomb is the intentional manipulation of a search engine to return a specific result, thanks to large numbers of relevant links or related searches. One recently uncovered by FoxNews.com connected the search string define: to certain swear words. And whether officially a “bomb” or merely an explosion in popularity, such image-jacking is clearly on the rise. . . .



LightSquared network killed at least for now

There have been a lot of corruption issues with the Obama administration pushing for the LightSquared project. Well, the case seems to be dead for now (see here).

But LightSquared isn't giving up.

The lawyers are investigating the merits of a potential suit against the Federal Communications Commission, which this week rejected LightSquared's plan for a broadband network, and the Global Positioning System industry. GPS companies and Defense Department officials have argued that LightSquared's signal could interfere with their networks.

Mr. Falcone, who runs Harbinger Capital Partners LLC, is betting that telephone companies will face shortages in broadband capacity in the future, forcing them to pay providers like LightSquared a premium to use their networks. But if the recent FCC decision prevents LightSquared from launching operations, the value of investment may boil down to the strength of the company's legal claims. . . .

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News blackout on Media Matters' David Brock violating DC gun laws

The Daily Caller has this news story:

“Brock, the head of the liberal nonprofit Media Matters for America, had told friends and co-workers that he feared he was in imminent danger from right-wing assassins and needed a security team to keep him safe.”. . .
By 2010, Brock’s personal assistant, a man named Haydn Price-Morris, was carrying a holstered and concealed Glock handgun when he accompanied Brock to events, including events in Washington, D.C., a city with famously restrictive gun laws. Price-Morris told others he carried the gun to protect Brock from threats.
Late in 2010, other Media Matters employees learned about Price-Morris’s gun, and he was fired due to their objections. No public announcement was made.
According to one source with knowledge of what happened next, Brock was “terrified” that news of the gun would leak. “George Soros and a lot of groups connected to gun control are funding this group, and they wouldn’t be too happy that an employee of Media Matters was carrying a gun, especially when it was illegal in D.C.”

Often the news media justify their heavy coverage of religious people or conservatives who have affairs because of hypocrisy. An affair by a conservative is more newsworthy than one by a liberal because of that reason. Well, Media Matters does all sorts of anti-gun ownership pieces. Do a search on their website for "guns" and you get 18 hits between the beginning of January this year and February 14th. In 32 business days that comes to almost two pieces every three days. There were 11 pieces in December and 12 in November. (I have tried to check these stories to make sure that the word "guns" is used in a relevant way.)

Over that same period they did 11 pieces that discussed the NRA. That is the equivalent of two pieces a week. In December, they had 10 pieces (2.5 per week). In November, they had 13 pieces.

Media Matters is a very influential media organization. David Brock is a very important guy. The hypocrisy factor is huge. You would think that this would be news worthy, but outside of Fox News there is a complete news blackout on this story. I just did a Google news search tonight and this is what I found. Including outlets such as Hot Air there are only FIVE hits on this.

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The School lunch police force small children to eat different foods than what their parents gave them

This is a pretty scary story from North Carolina. The Pope Institute has this information:

A mother in Hoke County complains her daughter was forced to eat a school lunch because a government inspector determined her home-made lunch did not meet nutrition requirements. In fact, all of the students in the NC Pre-K program classroom at West Hoke Elementary School in Raeford had to accept a school lunch in addition to their lunches brought from home.

NC Pre-K (before this year known as More at Four) is a state-funded education program designed to “enhance school readiness” for four year-olds.

The mother, who doesn’t wish to be identified at this time, says she made her daughter a lunch that contained a turkey and cheese sandwich, a banana, apple juice and potato chips. A state inspector assessing the pre-K program at the school said the girl also needed a vegetable, so the inspector ordered a full school lunch tray for her. While the four-year-old was still allowed to eat her home lunch, the girl was forced to take a helping of chicken nuggets, milk, a fruit and a vegetable to supplement her sack lunch.

The mother says the girl was so intimidated by the inspection process that she was too scared to eat all of her homemade lunch. The girl ate only the chicken nuggets provided to her by the school, so she still didn’t eat a vegetable.

The mother says her daughter doesn’t like vegetables and – like most four year olds – will only eat them at home under close supervision.

In an interview with the Civitas Institute the mother said “I can’t put vegetables in her lunchbox. I’m not a millionaire and I’m not going to put something in there that my daughter doesn’t eat and I’ve done gone round and round with the teacher about that and I’ve told her that. I put fruit in there every day because she is a fruit eater. Vegetables, let me take care of my business at home and at night and that’s when I see she’s eating vegetables. I either have to smash it or tell her if you don’t eat your vegetables you’re going to go to bed.”

The mother added, “It’s just a headache to keep arguing and fighting. I’ve even wrote a note to her teachers and said do not give my daughter anything else unless it comes out of her lunchbox and they are still going against me and putting a milk in front of her every day. . . .

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Europe giving up on Greece keeping its promises

From the Financial Times:

Olli Rehn, the European Commission’s top economics official, warned there would be “devastating consequences” if Greece defaulted, and pleaded for eurozone governments to approve the bail-out quickly. Officials said Mr Rehn has support from the European Central Bank and the French government.
But a group of eurozone governments, particularly those that retain triple-A credit ratings, has lost faith Greece will ever deliver its end of the bargain. Hardline officials in Germany, the Netherlands and Finland are increasingly urging a Greek default.
“We are getting closer to default,” said a senior eurozone official. “Germany, Finland and the Netherlands are losing patience.”
Finance ministers will hold a conference call on Wednesday and reconvene at a scheduled meeting on Monday.
One key reason for the increasing boldness in northern Europe is a growing belief the EU can contain the blowback from a disorderly default, having built up the eurozone’s financial “firewalls” against contagion. Some officials also believe financial markets have priced in a default, meaning any adverse reaction will be limited. . . .

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A 64% total tax on corporate profits?: Obama sure knows how to encourage investment

Companies already face a 40% marginal income tax. If they pay out their profits as dividends, Obama wants up to a 40% tax on those dividends. Those two taxes together would imply a 64% total tax on the profits earned by American shareholders. Of course, the total tax won't be that high because firms would immediately stop paying dividends, though I am sure that the Obama administration is assuming that the tax will have no effect on the dividend payout rate. From TVNZ:

President Barack Obama's 2013 election-year budget took investors by surprise with a call for significantly higher taxes on dividends, a major change from his earlier tax proposals and one that will raise the ire of dividend-paying companies.

Households earning more than $250,000 a year would see the tax they owe on dividends rise to a maximum of almost 40% next year, equal to the higher maximum income tax rate set to take effect in 2013. The current top income rate is 35%.

Obama again proposed raising the current 15% long-term capital gains tax rate to 20% for the wealthy. He had earlier also sought to set a 20% tax on dividends. . . .

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Chicago Most Corrupt City In Nation?

From the local CBS Chicago Radio affiliate:

A former Chicago alderman turned political science professor/corruption fighter has found that Chicago is the most corrupt city in the country.
He cites data from the U.S. Department of Justice to prove his case. And, he says, Illinois is third-most corrupt state in the country.
University of Illinois professor Dick Simpson estimates the cost of corruption at $500 million.
It’s essentially a corruption tax on citizens who bear the cost of bad behavior (police brutality, bogus contracts, bribes, theft and ghost pay-rolling to name a few) and the costs needed to prosecute it. . . .

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Only three states will still have a one gun a month law

South Carolina repealed its one-gun-a-month law in 2004. My research in More Guns, Less Crime didn't find any harm from this. The same fears are being stoked for Virginia's new legislation, but it also will soon be forgotten. From Reuters:

The state Senate voted 21-19 to amend Virginia law to eliminate the prohibition that was enacted in 1993 in an effort to curb gun-smuggling operations.

The vote confirmed a version of the measure passed by the House of Delegates in a 66-32 vote earlier this month, and now sends it to Republican Governor Bob McDonnell's desk.

Governor spokesman Jeff Caldwell told Reuters that McDonnell plans to sign the bill into law.

The one-a-month limit on handgun purchases was enacted by former Democratic Governor Douglas Wilder at a time when Virginia had the reputation as a state where gunrunners could arrange to purchase a volume of weapons to sell on the streets of cities such New York. . . .

Lawmakers who favor lifting the limit said doing so will bring Virginia into line with the majority of states. California, Maryland and New Jersey are the only others with such handgun purchasing limits, Republican Senator Charles Carrico Sr said during an earlier debate. . . .

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Why Obama's judicial appointments matter

From the Daily Caller:

And anyone who wonders what this assault on the Second Amendment might look like need look no further than Illinois, where a judge that President Obama appointed has just ruled that we have the right to keep arms, but not to bear them.

That’s not a typo. Rather, it’s an unbelievable decision recently delivered by U.S. Judge Sue Myerscough, in a challenge which the Second Amendment Foundation filed against Illinois’s ongoing prohibition against carrying concealed weapons in that state. Said Myerscough, in rendering her decision: “[Although the] plaintiffs argue that the Second Amendment protects a general right to carry guns that include a right to carry operable guns in public … [the] Supreme Court has not recognized a right to bear firearms outside the home.” . . . .

More on the ruling is available here.

. . . In documents filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Springfield, attorneys for the Second Amendment Foundation asked for a review of Judge Sue Myerscough’s ruling, in which she dismissed the organization’s challenge of the state’s one-of-a-kind ban on carrying concealed weapons.
In a 48-page decision issued Friday, Myerscough said the state’s law barring citizens from legally carrying concealed firearms doesn’t violate the U.S. Constitution because the Supreme Court has recognized the right to bear arms only within a home, not outside.
“Plaintiffs argue that the Second Amendment protects a general right to carry guns that includes a right to carry operable guns in public,” Myerscough wrote. “However, neither the United States Supreme Court nor any United States Court of Appeals has recognized such a right.
“Further, the Supreme Court has not recognized a right to bear firearms outside the home and has cautioned courts not to expand on its limited holding.” . . .

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Obama privately tells people the recovery 1 to 2 years off

From the Washington Examiner:

A letter provided to Washington Secrets from Obama to a long-unemployed Portland, Maine carpenter pulls back the curtain of economic hope to reveal the truth about the stagnant economy. “I won’t lie to you,” Obama penned in hand to Charles Oliver in October. “It will probably take another year or two to fully dig our way out of this hole.” . . .


Is Media Matters again violating campaign finance laws?

This isn't the first time that Media Matters has been seen violating campaign finance laws, but if these reports are correct that David Brock is coordinating his super PAC with the Obama White House, is such a violation. From Fox News:

The head of Media Matters for America -- now out coordinating a new super PAC to help President Obama get reelected -- is operating his nonprofit organization in close coordination with the Obama White House, a new investigative report out Monday says.
David Brock, according to the Daily Caller, has collected a $250,000 annual salary for his work at MMFA, which includes daily screeds against Fox News Channel and other media outlets that allow conservative perspectives in their reporting.
Brock's group, founded in 2004, is spending $20 million this year in a campaign to influence news coverage that sheds a positive image on the current administration as well as progressives and lawmakers in Congress.
And the campaign is going well, according to a former employee who told the DC that "virtually all the mainstream media" has used Media Matters' research.
"We were pretty much writing their prime time," the ex-employee was quoted saying of MSNBC.
Brock is also the head of American Bridge 21st Century, the political action committee that he has boasted would become a rival to Karl Rove's American Crossroads GPS. . . . .

Here is a related story: Liberal Harvard University Professor Alan Dershowitz warns Democrats to drop Media Matters

More from Hotair is available here.

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Newt's financial backer calls it quit?

This shows that his campaign is in real trouble. From Business Insider:

While billionaire casino mogul Sheldon Adelson may have rescued Newt Gingrich’s campaign in its early days, today, he may have just buried it.
Bloomberg News reports that Adelson, who has donated $11 million to Gingrich’s Super PAC, does not plan to send any more money Gingrich’s way. Bloomberg is citing an anonymous source “familiar with their deliberations,” though an Adelson spokesman declined to comment.
The move seems to be weeks in the making. After poor showings by Gingrich in the last several races and the re-resurgence of Rick Santorum, the former House speaker has once again been pushed to the back of the Republican field. And Adelson may be shifting his focus. According to CNN, Adelson met with Mitt Romney in Nevada last week and “assured Romney that he will be behind him 100 percent should he become the nominee.” . . . .