Sunday, October 21, 2012

The Sunday 'Report;' 10/21/2012 [Part 1]

What The National Pamphleteers Don't Report:
Evolution and Trends in Terrorism Tradecraft
by Scott Stewart,
October 11, 2012
The terrorist tradecraft discussed in last week's Security Weekly does not happen in isolation. The practitioners of terrorist tradecraft conduct their activities in the midst of other people -- the authorities attempting to identify them and thwart their plans as well as civilians. Terrorist tradecraft also does not remain static. It is constantly evolving. These changes are prompted not only by countermeasures put in place to prevent terrorist attacks but also by advances in technology -- a powerful force that can serve to either nullify old tradecraft practices or to provide new tools to the purveyors of terror.
Terrorism is an enduring reality. While geopolitical changes may cause a shift in the actors who employ terrorism as a tactic, terrorism will continue to be used no matter what the next geopolitical cycle brings. It is, and will continue to be, a tactic used by militant actors who want to confront a militarily superior enemy. Focusing on the tradecraft used in attacks and charting its changes and trends not only permits observers to understand what is happening and why but also provides an opportunity to [....]

Got a House On The Market?  Be On The Lookout For Young Couples
by James Paffrath,
undated material
According to a 2012 survey, a new baby is the most common reason for people to go out and buy a home. The second-most common reason that people are buying homes? Because they've just gotten married.
It makes perfect sense. After all, people in either of these situations are ready to settle down and set some roots. And, since they've got two incomes to put towards a down payment -- along with having an easier time qualifying for loans -- buying a house makes perfect sense in both situations.
So, what does this mean for you if you're trying to sell your home?
It means you [....]!&id=7313426
A Housing Market Without Fannie Mae and Freddie Mack:  The Effect On Housing Starts
by Nahid Anaraki,
October 4, 2012
    This paper tries to capture the effects of interventions by government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) in the housing market by creating a hypothetical scenario in which one could see what would happen to housing starts without Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Housing starts are an especially important indicator of overall strength in the housing sector and are a contributor to economic growth. This study finds that shutting down Fannie and Freddie during the test period of 1980–2010 would have slightly affected housing starts at the national and regional levels. The analysis uses time series regression models with quarterly data across a 30-year period to examine the effects of changes in conventional mortgage interest rates on housing starts both at the national and regional levels. The study controls for economic fundamentals—including [....]

Is obamaKare Responsible For The Surge In Part-Time Jobs?
What About obama's Defense Lay-Off Suspensions?
by Mike Shedlock,
October 9, 2012
    Following the surprise drop in the unemployment rate last Friday, I have seen many conspiracy charges leveled against the BLS.  I do not believe any of the conspiracy charges. Had Obama instructed the BLS to juice the numbers, someone in the BLS would surely be yapping. They are not all Democrats. Many were hired under President Bush.
Is Obamacare Responsible for Surge in Part-Time Jobs?
Some stated the 582,000 surge in part-time workers was a seasonal thing based on teachers going back to work. I do not buy that explanation either because the surge in part-time workers and the decline in the unemployment rate were seasonally adjusted.
    One likely explanation is an outlier and the data will be revised lower soon enough (or the previous month's of weakness up). There is a second possible explanation although the timing as to precisely when it would matter is uncertain. [....]

More People Should Pay Taxes
by Curtis Dubay,
September 19, 2012
However, far too often today, the tax code is fueling the demand for government, and increasing dependency on it. This vicious cycle is destroying the government’s finances and — more importantly — making it harder for Americans to lead productive, independent lives.
So many numbers get bounced around about who pays what, so a little perspective is in order. For more on the 47% who don’t pay taxes, read Rep. Allen West’s guest column.
Who pays taxes?
According to the IRS, the top 1% of American earners (those with incomes over $344,000) received 17% of all income earned in 2009. They paid 37% of all federal income taxes that year (the latest year for which these statistics are available).
The top 10% (those with incomes over $112,000) received 43% of all income and paid 71% of all federal income taxes.
No matter how you slice it, [....]

Attacks On Tax Reform Miss The Mark
by J.D. Foster; Curtis Dubay,
October 11, 2012
Tax reform proposals like Heritage’s New Flat Tax, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp’s plan, and Governor Mitt Romney’s plan are susceptible to unfair attacks by the media, think tanks, and politicians. President Obama, for example, completely misstates the facts regarding Governor Mitt Romney’s tax reform proposal by citing an unfair think tank analysis.[1]
The issue is a minor matter of $5 trillion. The continued obvious errors in the face of clear and unequivocal evidence to the contrary suggest that perhaps a remedial lesson on the facts is needed.
The Essentials of Tax Reform
The essentials of individual income tax reform are simple enough. Romney, for example, distills them down to three basic principles: [....]

Two Very Cleaver "Eastwooding" Images
by Daniel J. Mitchell,
October 11, 2012
Amusing California Satire by Walter Williams, but What if Gov. Brown Takes It Seriously?
    I periodically mock the crazy statists of California. The state is almost surely doomed to suffer a Greek-style fiscal chaos. The only unknown is whether Illinois will beat the Golden State into default.  The politicians in Sacramento impose very high taxes to fund a bloated bureaucracy that oversees a bunch of politically correct nonsense.  But the scam may be coming to an end. Margaret Thatcher famously warned that the problem with socialism is that sooner or later you run out of other people’s money.  Well, that’s happening sooner in California because more and more people are deciding to leave the state.
    Yet the moochers and looters than run the state aren’t learning the right lesson. They think that successful people are a pinata that can be endlessly beaten in the search for more revenue.
But there will come a point when they realize that the geese with the golden eggs are flying away. What will they do when reality slaps them in the face?
In a just and good world, they will realize they screwed up and reverse the horrible policies that crippled California. They will reduce the burden of government spending and replace the state’s class-warfare tax system with a simple and fair flat tax.
Unfortunately, we [....]

5 Reasons To Accumulate Costco Stock Going Forward
by Chris Katje,
October 11, 2012
[Not an endorsement for this or any other stock or investment vehicle]
    Retailer Costco (COST) saw its shares hit an all time high Wednesday of $104.43 after reporting fourth quarter and full fiscal year earnings. The retailer beat analysts' targets across the board for earnings and revenue for both time periods. In the fourth quarter, Costco saw $31.52 billion in net sales, an increase of 14%. Membership fees also increased to $694 million, making a total of $32.2 billion in revenue. Same store sales (open 12 months) increased in both United States stores (+6%), and International stores (+2%). Net income was $609 million for the fourth quarter. The company reported earnings per share of $1.39 in the quarter, after posting $1.08 in the same period last year. Analysts on Yahoo Finance saw the company earning $1.31 per share from $31.69 billion in revenue.
    Costco reported full year net sales of $97.06, a 12% increase from the prior fiscal year. Membership fees increased to $2.08 billion. In total, Costco saw full year revenue of $99.14 billion. The company posted $88.92 billion in revenue in the prior year. Net income increased to $1.71 billion for the fiscal year. Earnings per share [....]

A Lawyer By Training, obama Ignores Rule Of Law
by John Ransom,
October 11, 2012
"The Illegal-Donor Loophole" is the headline of a Daily Beast story by Peter Schweizer of the conservative Government Accountability Institute and Peter Boyer, former reporter at The New Yorker and The New York Times.
The article tells how, a website owned by an Obama fundraiser who lives in China but has visited the Obama White House 11 times, sends solicitations mostly to foreign email addresses and links to the Obama campaign website's donation page.
The Obama website, unlike those of most campaigns, doesn't ask for the three- or four-digit credit card verification number. That makes it easier for donors to use fictitious names and addresses to send money in.
Campaigns aren't allowed to accept donations from foreigners. But it looks like the Obama campaign has made it easier for them to slip money in. How much foreign money has come into the Obama campaign? Schweizer and Boyer say there's no way to know.
The campaign -- as my former boss, pollster Peter Hart, likes to say -- always reflects the candidate. A campaign willing to skirt the law or abet violations of it reflects a candidate who, as president, has been doing the same thing.
Examples abound. Take the [....]

obama's Game Changes
by Victor Davis Hanson,
October 11, 2012
    Usually after a presidential debate, both sides spin the results. But after the first face-off between President Obama and challenger Mitt Romney, Obama's exasperated handlers made no such effort. How could they when most opinion polls revealed that two-thirds of viewers thought Obama clearly lost?  Within minutes of the parting handshake, the liberal base went ballistic. Bill Maher, Chris Matthews and Michael Moore all but accused Obama of embarrassing the progressive cause. The post-debate spin focused not on whether the president had been creamed by challenger Mitt Romney, but rather on how that had been possible.
     For a while, there were excuses galore. Was the meltdown due to Denver's high altitude? Perhaps the president was distracted over national security issues. Had Obama taken a pre-debate sedative for tension? Surely the rapid-recall Romney must have sneaked in written talking points on his Kleenex.  A few days later, there were accusations from the Obama camp that Romney had been "untruthful" in the back-and-forth -- a post-facto charge not leveled by the president in the middle of the debate, but only afterwards in his prepared campaign speeches.
     Yet Obama [....]

Number Of US States, Journalists, Hit New Low Under obama
by John Ransom,
October 11, 2012
The number of U.S. states reporting initial unemployment claims has dropped to a new low under Obama- and more importantly journalists have dropped to a new low as a result.
Previously physicists had predicted that journalists couldn’t get lower.
Guess what? They were wrong.
I call it the Obama effect: No matter how crappy things are, adding Obama can make it just a little but crappier.
Only 49 of 50 states reported initial unemployment claims last week according to Labor Department economists. This has led to a predictable, yet wholly pathetic attempt by the media to say that unemployment claims have fallen to a new, four-year low even as it is suspected that the most populous state, California, didn’t report results.
Reports the Washington Post via the AP: [....]

Memo To Investors: 
Bernanke And obama Are Your Partners
by Jerry Bowyer,
October 11, 2012
    Last week, I began to make the case that the investors should pay far more attention to the country environment in which prospective companies are domiciled than they, and Wall Street commonly do. Some got it; some didn’t. I want to take the conversation to the next level of detail. Let’s approach this question by reasoning from basic principles. We know from 4,000 years of recorded history what does and doesn’t work when it comes to national prosperity. The Scriptures speak to these questions, as do the other great books of Western Civilization. The founding fathers of the U.S. have probably captured these truths better than anybody, and codified them into the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States of America.
    The Great Books give us enormous amounts of insight about how to be a successful man, and about how to be a successful nation. However, there is simply no body of knowledge even remotely comparable of similar pedigree about how to be a great publicly traded corporation. The modern, limited liability, publicly traded company is rather new in human history. Yes, there’s a slew of In Searches of Excellence and Goods to Greats, etc. which have appeared in our generation. Most of them contradict one another and have very poor track records when it comes to identifying future successes. When it comes to [....]

A New Role?  The Future Of The Republican Party
by Frank S. Meyer,
National Review (print version)
December 1, 1970
    What is the role of American conservatism now that liberalism has been emptied of its charismatic power and the fundamental threat to our civilization is radical, anarchistic, nihilist, rather than liberal? What are the prospects and what should be the directions of the Republican Party now that the old Democratic alliance has split asunder, its liberal and radical elements warring one with another, its blue-collar and Southern elements moving in a conservative direction?
    Fifteen years ago when National Review was founded, the situation in the United States was profoundly different. The power of liberalism — political, social, cultural — was at its height. The revolutionary transformation of American society ushered in with the election of Franklin Roosevelt in 1932 had been consolidated, a consolidation signalized not least by the liberal capture of the opposition party, when the Eisenhower forces defeated the [....]

Wassername-Schultz Says Wrong Statements Aren't False Statements
by Bryan Nash,
Personal Liberty Digest
October 12, 2012
    Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz recently defended her party’s actions in regards to the attacks in Libya. While appearing on CNN, the Representative from Florida made a statement which defies all logic and shows she is either a liar or just plain dumb. Or perhaps she’s both.  Piers Morgan asked Wasserman Schultz if it is “pretty un-American” to put out “completely false statements before you know the facts.”
    Wasserman Schultz responded by saying that just because they had the wrong information, it doesn’t mean they put out false information.
Well, that doesn’t mean it was false,” she answered. Morgan may not [....]

PayScale College Selector
Staff Report,
undated material
Find the schools that suit you and your budget best. PayScale’s College Selector helps you sort through and prioritize a list of top colleges in a matter of minutes, including your likely earnings after graduation. [....]

Powerful Video From A Former obama Supporter
Staff Report,
October 12, 2012
The top five reasons Barack Obama should not be re-elected as President.

No Matter How Hard He Tries, obama Will Never Be As Bad As FDR
by Daniel J. Mitchell,
October 13, 2012
    I’ve explained on many occasions that Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal was bad news for the economy. And the same can be said of Herbert Hoover’s policies, since he also expanded the burden of federal spending, raised tax rates, and increased government intervention.
So when I was specifically asked to take part in a symposium on Barack Obama, Franklin Roosevelt, and the New Deal, I quickly said yes.
    I was asked to respond to this question: “Was that an FDR-Sized Stimulus?” Here’s some of what I wrote.
President Obama probably wants to be another FDR, and his policies share an ideological kinship with those that were imposed during the New Deal. But there’s really no comparing the 1930s and today. And that’s a good thing. As explained by Walter Williams and Thomas Sowell, President Roosevelt’s policies are increasingly understood to have had a negative impact on the American economy. …what should have been a routine or even serious recession became the Great Depression.
In other words, my assessment is that Obama is a Mini-Me version of FDR, which is a lot better (or, to be more accurate, less worse) than the real thing.
To be sure, Obama wants higher tax rates, and he has expanded government control over the economy. And the main achievement of his first year was the so-called stimulus, which was based on the same Keynesian theory that a nation can become richer by switching money from one pocket to another. … [....]

Battleground States Talkers Tour
by Various Contributors
various dates
    Join Jon Voight, Hugh Hewitt, Mike Gallagher, Michael Medved & Dennis Prager for an evening of discussion and Q&A just days before the most important election in a lifetime. The event is FREE but an RSVP/registration is required for a ticket.
Jon Voight, Michael Medved, Hugh Hewitt, Dennis Prager
Jon Voight, Dennis Prager, Hugh Hewitt, Michael Medved
Jon Voight, Dennis Prager, Hugh Hewitt, Michael Medved
Jon Voight, Dennis Prager, Hugh Hewitt, Michael Medved
Jon Voight, Dennis Prager, Hugh Hewitt, Michael Medved
More dates at the website!
[Blogger Note:  The Link at each date is to register for the event in that particular city]

'Friday Night Lights' Author Describes How He Was 'Savaged' After Endorsing Mitt Romney
by Erica Ritz,
October 14, 2012
    “Friday Night Lights” author and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Buzz Bissinger kicked up a firestorm after becoming the most recent public figure to endorse Mitt Romney last week. Describing himself as a lifelong Democrat from New York’s Upper West Side, or “the country’s nexus of liberalogy,” he admitted in a Daily Beast article that he still clings to his roots, but moves further to the right as he ages. The article analyzes the policy positions of the two candidates, which he says he studied “assiduously,” and concludes with [....]

Did obama Stage Benghazi Attack?
Anonymous Contributor,
October 15, 2012
    I received a phone call from an old friend that has been in Washington D.C. for years and is fairly well-connected politically. What she told me was ugly and sinister,yet very compelling. She said she had received information from someone high up in White House circles,and wanted my thoughts. No,there is no leaked email,no concrete proof,and this article is based on “hearsay.”I’m not one that usually engages in or repeats hearsay,but if this is true,it could be the biggest story in 50 years.
     According to her,Barack Obama,wanting an “October Surprise,”had secretly arranged with the Muslim Brotherhood for a kidnapping of our ambassador. Then sometime in October before the election Obama was to orchestrate some great military action to rescue Ambassador Stevens,causing all of America to cheer Obama’s strong foreign policy and bravery and making him look like a hero. After all,his supposed killing of Osama Bin Laden bounce had long since faded. Thus,sweeping him to victory in November. Imagine the headlines and talking points. The election would be a lock. The Muslim Brotherhood has every reason to [....]

obama's Green Jobs Promise:
355 Jobs And Counting
by Marita Noon,
October 14, 2012
In Thursday night’s Vice Presidential debate, the Administration’s green agenda was, once again, part of the verbal sparring. The exchange ended with Congressman Ryan’s unanswered question: “Where are the 5 million green jobs…?” Moderator Martha Raddatz cut him off mid-question, steering the conversation elsewhere: “I want to move on here to Medicare and entitlements. I think we've gone over this quite enough.”
Ryan didn’t finish his question. Vice President Biden wasn’t pressed into an uncomfortable answer that would have wiped the smile off his face.
Had Ryan not been interrupted and been allowed to finished the question, he likely would have continued: “…Candidate Obama promised in 2008 when he pledged to jumpstart the economy with an influx of green jobs. Many times, he specifically stated: ‘I will invest $15 billion a year in renewable sources of energy to create 5 million new energy jobs over the next decade—jobs that pay well; jobs that can’t be outsourced; jobs building solar panels and wind turbines and a new electricity grid; jobs building the fuel-efficient cars of tomorrow, not in Japan, not in South Korea but right here in the U.S. of A. Jobs that will help us eliminate the oil we import from the Middle East in 10 years and help save the planet in the bargain. That's how America can lead again.’ Where are those green jobs?”

Random Thoughts On The Passing Scene:
by Dr Thomas Sowell,
October 16, 2012
Not since the days of slavery have there been so many people who feel entitled to what other people have produced as there are in the modern welfare state, whether in Western Europe or on this side of the Atlantic.
Economist Edward Lazear has cut through all of Barack Obama's claims about "creating jobs" with one plain and inescapable fact — "there hasn't been one day during the entire Obama presidency when as many Americans were working as on the day President Bush left office." Whatever number of jobs were created during the Obama administration, more have been lost.
How are children supposed to learn to act like adults, when so much of what they see on television shows adults acting like children?
The know-it-all smirks and condescending laughs of Vice President Joe Biden, when Congressman Paul Ryan was speaking during their debate, were a little much from an administration presiding over economic woes at home and disasters overseas — and being caught in lies about both. Like Barack Obama, Joe Biden has all the clever tricks of a politician and none of the wisdom of a statesman.
If you truly believe in the brotherhood of man, then you must believe that blacks are just as capable of being racists as whites are.
One of the most foolish, and most dangerous, things one can do is to take love for granted, instead of nurturing it and safeguarding it as the prize jewel of one's life.
Whenever you hear people talking about "a living Constitution," almost invariably they are people who are in the process of slowly killing it by "interpreting" its restrictions on government out of existence.
Do either Barack Obama or his followers have any idea how many countries during the 20th century set out to "spread the wealth" — and ended up spreading poverty instead? At some point, you have to turn from rhetoric, theories and ideologies to facts. [....]

10 Dates To Remember From barack obama's Amazing First Term
by John Hawkins,
October 9, 2012
"The issue here is not gonna be a list of accomplishments. As you said yourself, Steve, you know, I would put our legislative and foreign policy accomplishments in our first two years against any president — with the possible exceptions of Johnson, F.D.R., and Lincoln." -- Barack Obama
    As future generations of Americans look back at the Obama years, perhaps as they search for some sort of explanation for why so many of them are living in huts and paying a 70% income tax rate when the country used to be so rich, they'll be looking for some key dates and facts. So, in an effort to help future generations, here is a straightforward, entirely factual account of some of the most important moments of the Obama years.1) Barack Obama Inaugurated (January 20, 2009): Oh, it was such a hopeful, glorious, unified moment. Cats and dogs, Fox and MSNBC, Republicans and Democrats -- we were all in it together and rooting Obama on towards victory……….which brings up some obvious questions like: How did Barack Obama squander so much goodwill and what did he do to make so many Americans hate him?2) Barack Obama throws out the first pitch at the All-Star game (July 14, 2009): On this date, the hippest man ever to occupy the White House revolutionized fashion in America at Major League Baseball's All-Star game. Ever heard of mom jeans? Well, Barack Obama wore them to the All-Star game and that, combined with his girlish throwing motion, caused moms across America to copy the mom-in-chief – and that is how Barack Obama created mom jeans! 3) Obamacare passes (March 21, 2010): In one fell swoop, Barack Obama managed to cripple American healthcare, put the medical insurance industry on [....]

Defining al Qaeda
by Scott Stewart,
October 18, 2012
    The Obama administration's efforts to counter the threat posed by al Qaeda and the wider jihadist movement have been a contentious topic in the U.S. presidential race. Political rhetoric abounds on both sides; administration officials claim that al Qaeda has been seriously crippled, while some critics of the administration allege that the group is stronger than ever. As with most political rhetoric, both claims bear elements of truth, but the truth depends largely on how al Qaeda and jihadism are defined. Unfortunately, politicians and the media tend to define al Qaeda loosely and incorrectly.
The jihadist threat will persist regardless of who is elected president, so understanding the actors involved is critical. But a true understanding of those actors requires [....]
[Blogger: Middle Eastern "Fast'n'Furious?!?"]
Jihadists Receiving MOST Arms Sent To Syrian Rebels
by David Sanger,
October 15, 2012
WASHINGTON — Most of the arms shipped at the behest of Saudi Arabia and Qatar to supply Syrian rebel groups fighting the government of Bashar al-Assad are going to hard-line Islamic jihadists, and not the more secular opposition groups that the West wants to bolster, according to American officials and Middle Eastern diplomats.
That conclusion, of which President Obama and other senior officials are aware from classified assessments of the Syrian conflict that has now claimed more than 25,000 lives, casts into doubt whether the White House’s strategy of minimal and indirect intervention in the Syrian conflict is accomplishing its intended purpose of helping a democratic-minded opposition topple an oppressive government, or is instead sowing the seeds of future insurgencies hostile to the United States.
“The opposition groups that are receiving the most of the lethal aid are exactly the ones we don’t want to have it,” said one American official familiar with the outlines of those findings, commenting on an operation that in American eyes has increasingly gone awry.
The United States is not sending arms directly to the Syrian opposition. Instead, it is providing intelligence and other support for shipments of secondhand light weapons like rifles and grenades into Syria, mainly orchestrated from Saudi Arabia and Qatar. The reports indicate that the shipments organized from Qatar, in particular, are largely going to hard-line Islamists.
The assessment of the arms flows comes at a crucial time for Mr. Obama, [....]
Part 2, to follow....



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