Well, that didn’t last. President Obama went out to Osawatomie, Kansas, to deliver what the White House told us in hushed tones was a major address. He proclaimed it “the defining issue of our time.” It’s more than that, it’s the “make or break moment for the middle class and for all those struggling to make it into the middle class.”
The changes brought about by the Tax Reform Act of 1986 had two main effects. First, it incentivized home ownership by enhancing the tax benefits associated with owning property and having a mortgage. Second, in eliminating the favorable treatment of other debt interest, it made the home mortgage the primary channel by which people would choose to accumulate debt thanks to the interest on that debt being tax advantaged.
‘Tis the season for every media outlet, blog, or writer to put out a “Top List” of the year. Instead of the usual top hits or highlights of the year, it’s worth remembering why this was one of the roughest years for small business owners at the hands of our own government. Herein our own list of the Grinches that tried to replace holiday cheer with a goody bag of ill-considered, overly onerous rules and regulations and other assorted job killers this year.
The Obama admiistration requires mining companies to pack in tools via; and the companies must certify that the mules are feed weed-free hay. Seriously.
A reckless federal judge has decided to let the IRS go on a fishing expedition of California real estate records because it is theoretically possible that some people haven’t reported information on their tax returns. Here are some details from a report at Forbes.
The last thing the incumbents in Congress will do is to change the rules in a way that might level the playing field between themselves and challengers, leading to an almost 100% reelection rate even though Congress, as a body, suffers from a pathetic 11% approval rating. Therefore, Lessig is proposing to call an Article V convention to end run the Congress. So is Olafson in his effort to take away Congress’s credit cards.
Let’s have a happy debate: What are the five best Christmas movies of all time? Obviously, tastes differ and change over time. Here are my five favorites, the ones I am willing to watch every Christmas season, starting with number five and ending with my absolute favorite.
The president of the Laborer’s International Union of North America, in reference to Keystone XL stated “The administration chose to support environmentalists over jobs…Job-killers win, American workers lose.”
Lowes plans to accomplish this projected earnings growth largely through improvements in technology, ecommerce and merchandising.
Changes are coming. Many things we know and love will soon be gone, just as happened to the 8-track player, the buggy whip, and MS DOS. Unfortunately, we are also losing some things we cannot afford to.
If you are like Senator Rand and don’t think that it makes sense to have to flush twice to make up for a deliberately insufficient vortex, you can buy a Canadian-made 3.5 gallon toilet on the black market. Can you imagine having that crime on your rap sheet?
Right now, bearish factors such the European crisis, still-high unemployment rates and a pervading sense that Washington can do no right are the key factors behind the market.
They just don't know when to quit. Consumed with the singular task of re-electing Barack Obama, progressives across the country will use the holiday season to propagandize their conservative relatives and friends. White House elves are directing the re-education Christmas camp efforts.
That is the way it works and has to work. When you vote for a candidate, you vote for all of his or her positions. You accept the moral responsibility for the working out of their platform in practice.
If racial preferences in higher education were good for racial minorities in higher education, we surely would have seen the definitive evidence of it by now. Instead, a widening shelf of empirical research suggests that the opposite is true -- that affirmative action in academia is not advancing minority achievement but impeding it.
This is an edited version of the column from Christmas 2003 which was written from Tikrit and Baghdad. At the time, according to the Congressional Research Service, there were 130,600 U.S. troops in Iraq when this was written. This Christmas, most of them are home.
The depravity of our popular culture and our eagerness to shred traditional values manifests itself every day. Lady Gaga, the top-earning woman in the music business and deemed by ABCs Barbara Walters to be one of the "most fascinating people," has a new vocation in mind. She's announced she wants to become an ordained minister of the Universal Life Church so she can marry two gay male friends.
As a non-Christian with a deep affection for Christmastime, I've always felt a little left out around this time of year, but not in the way you might think. I've always felt a bit out of place with the venerable conservative tradition of denouncing the "war on Christmas."???
There seems to be a common line of demarcation separating two basic factions on the political right in the various skirmishes we have fought against Barack Obama, from their markedly different approaches to the budget battles to their differences in sizing up the GOP presidential candidates.
The problems we have in the country are political, not economic. Solutions will come only when the Gordian Knot is cut politically. The GOP needs to look for a watershed. Voters will vote in 2012 for a Brand New Deal, with Obama and the Democrats playing the part of Herbert Hoover, if the GOP is wise enough to offer it.
This is the time of year to turn our thoughts to noble sentiments and inspiring stories. William Bennett, who has established something of a cottage industry in uplift, has a new book out that celebrates and explicates all that is bracing, wholesome, affecting and necessary about men and manliness.
Four years ago, this annual Christmas column was written from Baquba, Iraq, while our Fox News "War Stories" team was embedded with the U.S. Army's 3rd Infantry Division and special operations units operating against the Iranian-supported Mahdi Army in the outskirts of Baghdad. A year earlier, the Christmas 2006 column was written in Ramadi, Iraq, while we were embedded with 1st Battalion, 6th Marines in what was then the bloodiest place on the planet.
Either there has been a huge increase in discrimination by law enforcement during the Obama administration, or Obama is targeting law enforcement for politically motivated reasons. In the current era of heightened sensitivity to racism and police brutality, it makes no sense that abuses by law enforcement are increasing.
This has been a busy week for the Grim Reaper, slashing out at friend and foe, winning each battle fought against clay-footed humans who earned obituaries on the front page inspired by love or hate or both. Words often have a life of their own, particularly in matters of life and death. Cosmic coincidences in man's fate bring to our attention very different men merely because they died within days of each other.
Ah, to be in Vienna at Yuletide. Streets sparkle with the lights of the Christkindlmarkts, the traditional markets that spring up for the season. Skaters circle the rink outside the picturesque Rathaus (City Hall). Merrymakers warm their hands on cups of gluhwein (mulled wine). What could possibly be missing?
For more than a dozen years now, I've spent the days leading up to Christmas in search of a special gift. Not the kind you can buy at the mall or charge on your credit card but the gift of a traditional Midnight Mass. It goes back to my childhood, when I couldn't wait until I was old enough to attend Midnight Mass with my grandmother at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in downtown Denver.
An iPad, an Xbox, whatever our most desired shiny object under the Christmas tree happens to be is not as precious as the ability to celebrate Christmas freely and openly -- with Santa at Macy's or midnight Mass at St. Patrick's, as casually or as devoutly as we wish.
I have kept the true story of the Heritage Foundation and the individual health insurance mandate under wraps for almost 20 years now, because up until now it has been too costly to tell it. But now it is too costly not to tell it.
Adair went to work for the Boston Planned Parenthood clinic in 1997 believing the company line, but quickly learned the cold reality.
When you think of Republican Rep. Paul Ryan, terms like earnest, serious and important come to mind. So does the term old-fashioned. Ryan comes from an old-fashioned place, the blue-collar town of Janesville, Wis. He cherishes the old-fashioned values of a faithful family man. He even looks old-fashioned, with his white shirts and striped ties.
Choosing a gift for the supervisor who has everything -- and knows nothing -- can put a damper of the whole holiday season. If you choose right, you could accelerate your rise up the corporate ladder. Choose wrong and you could accelerate your race to the unemployment office.
Suppose there wasn’t any angel financing for any firms anywhere. What would happen? Entrepreneurs would have ideas for companies and form them. But they would have to grow from internal cash flow, then wait until they had enough assets to go to a bank and ask for a loan.
Let's say you're considering one of three options: taking early retirement at Age 62, retiring at the traditional Age 65, or really holding off on retiring until you've reached Age 70. Which choice might be better for you?
That rates at 8 out of 10 with 2 home runs and possibly a couple doubles. For forecasting, that's a pretty good-to-great year.
Enfamil Newborn formula is a well-known mother's milk substitute. Non-breastfeeding infants consume formula relatively exclusively during their first few months of life. They are introduced to solid foods during their first year, but otherwise doctors generally recommend no other beverage aside from mother's milk, infant formula and water during the first year.
This dissolution of the relationship between economics and finance is a huge problem, because interest rates are the theoretical and practical foundation of all financial valuation.
I’ve posted some serious videos about the Second Amendment, but this video should win the marketing prize.
Last week’s 60 Minutes featured another in its long line of joint CBS-Castro productions. This time Anderson Cooper and his production crew partnered with the Stalinist regime’s Centro de Investigaciones Marinas for a propaganda piece on the marvels of Cuban coral reef conservation.
Three weeks out from the New Hampshire primary, and voters in the Granite State don't seem to have settled firmly on one of the Republican presidential candidates.
If you've been watching cable television regularly, you've heard from many analysts who know Newt Gingrich personally. They either call him the smartest man in the room or they tell us Gingrich believes he's the smartest man in the room. Gingrich has always been a government ideas man, and whenever he says something odd, out of the ordinary or otherwise eyebrow raising or provocative, it's explained away as Newt being Newt. His ideas are, in fact, what get him in trouble.
The whack-job left remains skeptical of Obama largely because they have yet to see him confiscate your home, my home and all other homes with up-to-date mortgages. Remember: This is a group of people who think recycling is dropping “trou” in Zucotti Park.
For the past three years the United States Senate, under the leadership of Obama toady Harry Reid, has been an embarrassment for the United States. Now the so-called "Upper Body" has merely kicked the can down the road for two months on an extension of the payroll tax cut, and the House has rightly rejected the Senate's maneuver.
I first met Ron Paul in 1988 at the Beverly Hills home of Dr. Timothy Leary, the one-time "turn on, tune in, drop out" LSD guru. Leary talked to me about how he was going to have his head frozen cryogenically when he died -- it happened eight years later -- and why he was hosting a fundraiser for Paul. The event showed that there is such a thing as being so far to the right, or left, that you bond with the fringe left or fringe right.
Yes, I know that "Marley and Me" was a hugely successful movie that came from a book. But as this Christmas approaches, seeing most of the Republican candidates for president desperately ripping each other apart with vicious and cruel statements, I am reminded again of Harry Truman's famous statement, "If you want a friend in Washington, get a dog." That goes for all of politics, where most of the GOP contestants, other than Newt Gingrich, have handed Barack Obama all the early negative ads and press releases he could ever have fathomed.
Well, according to data from the OECD, government got bigger, the tax burden rose, and there was more red ink once annual budget limits were agreed to.
In between his purchases of gold bullion and road flares, his attempts to put one more gallon of water in his cellar, and the addition of twenty more cans of green beans for dooms day, Glenn Beck has recently taken time to criticize and perhaps even undercut the GOP.
Holder says he’s a convenient two-fer for Obama critics. People identify him with the President because “you know, the fact that we’re both African American.” He also says those people who take exception with him or with Obama are part of the “more extreme segment” of America.
In the Meredith Wilson musical "The Music Man," a small Iowan town faces the sinister wiles of a big city con man, Harold Hill. In introducing themselves, they sing, "We could stand touchin' noses / For a week at a time / And never see eye-to-eye. But what the heck, you're welcome, / Join us at the picnic. You can eat your fill / Of all the food you bring yourself."
Muslim activists are calling Lowe’s decision to pull sponsorship of the TLC television series “All-American Muslim” ads bigotry. Butterball angered many Americans when customer service agents confirmed that all Thanksgiving turkeys had been slaughtered according to halal methods. What is an American corporation to do in response to America’s competing cultural conflicts? Does America have a culture to which companies should be expected to conform?
The road to gastric hell is paved with first lady Michelle Obama's Nanny State intentions. Don't take my word for it. School kids in Los Angeles have blown the whistle on the east wing chef-in-chief's healthy lunch diktats. Get your Pepto Bismol ready. The taste of government waste is indigestion-inducing.
Republicans and Democrats, liberals as well as conservatives, have bought into anti-Chinese trade demagoguery. Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi suggested that tariffs against China are a "key part of our 'Make It in America' agenda."
In 2008, New York Times columnist Paul Krugman was awarded the Nobel Prize in economics. At that time, it wasn't hard to imagine the Swedes were rewarding Krugman for eight years of blasting George W. Bush. In other words, the Nobel Prize truly matched its namesake: Alfred Nobel invented dynamite. Krugman regularly throws rhetorical dynamite at anything that stands in the way of his radical worldview.
That’s an evolutionary development in our form of government; and the Tea Party can trace its evolution in some sense right back to the Republican Revolution of 1994, led by Newt Gingrich, who tapped into public feelings of government overreach and reckless spending by Clin-trons Version 1.0, all-socialist, all-the-time.
Under this administration and this Congress -- which includes the Republican-controlled House of Representatives led by Speaker John Boehner -- the right of Catholics to freely exercise their religion is treated with less deference than the presumed right of stockyard owners to fill the skies with effluvia.
For the second time in two decades, North Korea's hereditary communist state confronts dynastic change -- and the civilized world, wary of the chronically belligerent realm's nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles, draws a guarded breath.
You can never tell when one of them might approach you. Sometimes you see them coming from afar off. Or they can suddenly materialize at your side. "Got a match?" "Sir, I'm stranded here and just need a few more dollars to get a bus to...." "Could you help a...."
Once again, Congress is playing high-stakes poker with a precarious economy and the lives of struggling Americans who live paycheck to paycheck. That is, if they're lucky enough to have a job.
In a victory for common sense, America's top trading partner has become the first country to bail on the Kyoto Protocol before the nearly $7 billion in noncompliance costs comes due next year. Thus ends a pointless and pricey exercise in martyrdom.
It’s so reassuring to have the intellectual elites in our nation’s teachers unions, like Sandy Hughes of Tennessee, looking out for us rubes.
Reporters routinely describe Ron Paul's foreign policy views as "isolationist" because he opposes the promiscuous use of military force. This is like calling him a recluse because he tries to avoid fistfights.
That question comes up because of a recent story from the United Kingdom, where Woodley baker Rachel Brown was forced to make 102,000 cupcakes to satisfy a torrent of customers who took advantage of the discount she had offered via Groupon, losing $20,000 in the process.
The world dollar standard’s death certificate arrives in the mail this week. The Bank of England — “the Old Lady of Threadneedle Street” — one of the most staid, cautious, and dignified entities in the world of monetary policy — signals that the fiduciary currency standard ushered in on August 15, 1971 is, empirically measured, far inferior to the (dilute form of the) gold standard erected at Bretton Woods.
I'm 64 and about to retire in the next year or so. I have enough in my retirement fund to pay for all my essentials and some extras, but I'm not wealthy.
Commodity booms and busts oftentimes last far beyond the time frame normally associated with a typical business cycle. IMF analysis of historical price movements in commodities filters out less significant short term movements to search for "trough to peak" and "peak to trough" cycles. They found that between 1862 and 1999, long booms were followed by large slumps, resulting in cycles of several decades.
Sounds absurd, but there’s been an increase in the demand for butter and high import taxes have created a huge incentive for black market butter sales.
Humility is not a virtue readily found in America today – especially on the field of play. A football player makes a touchdown, a forward slam dunks the ball, or a designated hitter rockets a grand slam out of the park, and it's all about high-stepping, chest-bumping, trash-talking and other over-the-top behaviors intended to send the message, "I am the greatest."
The 2012 Republican presidential primary campaign has been the most volatile and least predictable campaign in my lifetime. In spite of this, I see several potential scenarios in the early states, all subject to change at any moment.
On Monday, I had the pleasure of doing a live video for Capital Account with Lauren Lyster.
For decades New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman balanced his substantively anti-Israel positions with repeated protestations of love for Israel. His balancing act ended last week when he employed traditional anti-Semitic slurs to dismiss the authenticity of substantive American support for Israel.
Last week, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius overrode the Food and Drug Administration and limited the over-the-counter availability of Plan B, the abortifacient sometimes called the “morning after” pill, to girls 17 and older who can prove their age.
Anyone who knows me knows that for my whole life, I've been a huge supporter of our U.S. military personnel, whom I congratulate about their victory in Iraq. But when our president and officials in the U.S. Department of Defense exchange a war abroad for a religious war at home, can't we see that something else is seriously awry in this administration?
Ron Paul is doing surprisingly well this year in some of the early primary state polls. There's a simple reason for that: Most people in the conservative media have concluded he can't win the nomination, they don't want to get yelled at by his supporters, and so they've laid off of him while most of the other candidates have had to face ferocious criticism.
Hamline University is not a liberal arts college as it claims to be. It is an illiberal arts college that has just disgraced itself in the national court of public opinion. Former Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer was hired to teach at the school but then abruptly canned by those who did not want even a single high-profile conservative faculty member.
President Obama led us to believe that he would be a post-racial president who would bring the races together, but it's gotten to where you can't criticize this most leftist administration in American history without someone accusing you of racism.
The man, who more than anyone else, has brought Eric Holder to heel, can likely make a big name for himself as chairman of the oversight committee in the age of the socialist payoff to business and investors; even if Issa is, you know, a raaaaaacist.
As the heroes of the Cold War walk off into the mist -- Ronald Reagan, then John Paul II, now Vaclav Havel -- each departure makes their world more distant and foreign. But it is too early for forgetfulness, which would also be ingratitude.
It is a tragedy when people become so blinded by ideology that they waste their life savings or lose their jobs. When the blinded individuals hold power over federal spending, however, they waste other people’s money and lose other people’s jobs.
Surrounded by the protection of barbed wire fences and cement barricades, the United States Forces - Iraq flag was furled for the last time during an unpretentious ceremony in Baghdad, Iraq on December 15, 2011. It has been a long nine years.
Today the UK put a nail in the coffin of more money to the IMF and Sweden may do so as well.
In short, growth rates set real interest rates. The productive entrepreneur is the source of yields who must compete with other entrepreneurs for my investment money and who can only pay for the use of my money in the long run out of his or her ability to grow faster than the economy as a whole.
In a speech Tuesday at the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum in Austin, Texas, Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr. warned that recent state reforms, such as requiring photo IDs, might repress the minority vote. He said the Justice Department was reviewing photo ID laws just enacted in Texas and South Carolina, and early voting procedures in Florida.
In all of my years fighting on behalf of the National Rifle Association to defend the Second Amendment, I never thought I would see a White House so vehemently opposed to gun ownership that it would be willing to arm violent criminals and endanger American lives in pursuit of a gun control agenda.
The trading floor in New York is not at all like the trading floor in Chicago. In New York, it was much more genteel. Chicago was noisier, and after you got done with your day you might as well have been in a rugby scrum. But it was exhilarating.
As a former Time magazine “Person of the Year” myself (2006—look it up), I was intrigued by the editors’ choice of my latest successor: As you may have heard by now, POY for 2011 is “The Protestor,” an amalgam of Occupy Wall Street and people being gunned down in the Middle East.
We see potential for another type of sell-off or at least continued choppy consolidation for the first part of the year. As we approach summer the market should begin to discount the coming 2012 election, which we believe could provide a rationale for a bottom to all of this correcting and consolidating and a new bull phase to begin.
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the fairest GOP candidate of the them all? This seems to be the daily battle being fought in the news media. By the looks of things, I’d say Gingrich is the fairest in the land.
Vaclav Havel is dead. Among other forces and powers, he is among the seven individuals most responsible for peacefully ending the Cold War; the great liberators who brought freedom and democracy. They are Ronald Reagan, Pope John Paul II, Mikhail Gorbachev, Boris Yeltsin, Margaret Thatcher, Lech Walesa, and Havel.
Christmas is a holiday which marks the birth of Christ, and one on which people celebrate rich traditions that have come to be tied to the season. However, one thing’s for certain: none of those traditions involve Planned Parenthood’s newly released talking points for defending baby killing during your Christmas dinner—an idea even more repugnant than the group’s usual propaganda.
One of the most popular attractions in Washington, D.C. is a building that graces Pennsylvania Avenue with an exterior engraved with the First Amendment to the Constitution and its guarantee of, among other liberties, freedom of speech. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton would have been well advised to hold her three-day meeting last week with the some of the most determined enemies of free expression – increasingly doing business as the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) – at the Newseum, rather a few blocks away in Foggy Bottom.
About this time every year a campaign is launched to “keep Christ in Christmas,” as Christians protest against the “Happy Holidays” mantra that removes any mention of Christmas or against the ban on nativity scenes in schools and government buildings or against the “Xmas” abbreviation that removes any mention of “Christ.” But was “Christ” ever in “Christmas”?
Last month the Obama Administration announced it would delay a decision on whether to permit the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline – a 1,700 mile long proposed pipeline that will connect the Alberta oil sands and Bakken crude oil reserves to Gulf Coast refineries – until after the 2012 election.
Iowans are not giving up on social issues. These remain strong “bridge” issues that bring minority voters together with social conservatives whenever questions like abortion funding or overturning true marriage are put on the ballot.
Despite having to prepare for a debate far across the state on Dec. 15, four Republican presidential candidates -- Newt Gingrich, Michele Bachmann, Rick Perry and Rick Santorum -- came here to Des Moines the night before for the premiere of a movie.
Ok, yeah: The Denver Post reported that the police in Denver did end up seizing a stockpile of urine and feces that protestors intended to use as weapons of mass, um …obstruction? Presumably by now the Occupiers have completed courses in advanced urine and feces deployment.
President Obama spoke at the annual meeting of the Union for Reform Judaism last week, and he gave the attendees that ol' time religion -- liberalism. Not surprisingly, since Reform Judaism is, in Richard Brookhiser's timeless phrase, "the Democratic Party with holidays" -- it was well-received.
Everyone wants a piece of 24-year-old Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow. Most people settle for a high-five or an autograph. Others ask him to surrender his values, like the young women who beg him for fan photos and then start stripping off their shirts—sending Tebow darting away.
There was our President stating once again that he had a plan to fix the housing crisis that is stalling our economy and harming his reelection chances. When he was done making his proposal, it occurred to me that after 35 years of my working in the real estate market this man really had no more idea of how to resolve the problem than the average homeowner.
Why would Republican governor Mitch “Red Menace” Daniels want to help the Obama administration score public relations points with Hoosiers? One reason is Daniels’s favorite corporate welfare apparatus, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation, also handed out money from state taxpayers.
The reason for the sudden popularity of the dollar is that the euro keeps losing ground as it becomes apparent that the Europeans are not going to be able to craft any deal that’s going to keep the union together as it exists today and investors are fleeing for the exits.
I’ve written a couple of serious posts about the European fiscal crisis, including an explanation of how the problem could be solved and one about the importance of gun ownership in case the pessimists are right and civil society collapses.
There are a few people you read on the web, hear on the radio or see on TV and think, “I’d really like to meet that person.” When I moved to DC in 2001, I had a mental short list of those people, and Christopher Hitchens was right at the top.
The atheists I grew up with in Texas were a tad bit pluckier than today’s lardy hagfish atheists who file lawsuits every winter when they see a child wrapped in swaddling clothes.
Thomas Jefferson described writing the first draft of the Declaration of Independence as streaming thought from quill to papyrus in a single sitting. Not all of his original prose survived the committee edits leading up to the Fourth of July signing. Some of his wording was shamefully omitted; some much improved.
The bureaucrats earlier this month organized a fancy three-day conference in India to promote the agenda of class warfare and redistribution on your dime.
The EU, unlike the US, has limited resources—leaving them to depend on nuclear power, natural gas from Russia, and oil imported from the North Sea and Middle East.
Please try and disabuse yourself of some horrible logic and psychological constructs. World War Two did not bring the US out of the Great Depression. Saying that ignores the opportunity costs of war, and turns a blind eye to the decimation of human capital that took place from 1939-1945.
"No call, no text, no update, is worth a human life," National Transportation Safety Board Chairwoman Deborah Hersman said in a statement explaining her panel's recommendation in favor of a complete ban on the use of personal electronic devices in cars.
Back in 2006, a World War II flying ace briefly made headlines once again. Students at the University of Washington decided to shoot down the idea of a statue to honor Gregory “Pappy” Boyington, the Marine aviator who earned the Medal of Honor by destroying 26 Japanese planes.
Back when Ronald Reagan was president, conservatives relished skewering liberals who, in approaching international affairs, "always blame America first." A generation later, with Barack Obama in the White House, they are proving they can indict the U.S.A. with the best of them.
Dear Mr. Obama, From the time you declared your candidacy for president of the United States and announced under your breath that you are a Christian, many true, Bible-believing Christians immediately had doubts about your muffled profession of faith.
But apparently they are also exploring ways to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al Assad, a longtime ally of Iran whose position is in danger due to the current unrest in the country. In fact, a U.S. State Department official recently characterized the al Assad regime as a “dead man walking.”