• Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for April 26th on 17:06

    These are my links for April 26th from 17:06 to 18:59:

    • President 2012: Why Rep Paul Ryan Could Enter the Presidential race – It’s not just Bill Kristol, gang. There’s desire at the highest ranks of the Republican Party, according to my reporting and sources, to see House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan seek the 2012 presidential nomination. Here’s why:

      1) Since Democrats are determined to hang Ryan’s bold “Path to Prosperity” budget plan around the neck of every Republican running for office in 2012, why not have its author and best salesman advocate for it directly vs. President Obama?

      2) Ryan — to borrow a favorite Simon Cowell phrase — is “current.” He’s smack in the middle of budgetary and ideological clash between Democrats and Republicans and would immediately energize conservative and Tea Party activists.

      3) Ryan is a strong national defense conservative, as well as pro-life.

      4) Ryan is from a battleground state, Wisconsin, and a battleground region, the upper Great Lakes.

      5) Ryan’s youth, vigor, likability and Jimmy Stewart persona — well, a wonky version of George Bailey — would be an immediate shorthand signal to voters that he’s a different kind of Republican. He also has a compelling life story to tell.

      6) Obama suddenly and unexpectedly to Washington insiders looks beatable — by the right candidate.


      I can easily see a Mitch Daniels/Paul Ryan ticket.

      Or a Mike Huckabee/Paul Ryan ticket

      Or going for broke: Paul Ryan/Rudy Giuliani ticket

    • We Respond to NPR’s Lighthearted Coverage of Koch Death Threats | – I am writing to raise deep concerns about a Morning Edition segment that aired on April 22 and apparently made light of death threats that had been leveled at gentleman in Iowa but that had been intended for our company.
      The item was read by hosts Mary Louise Kelly and Renee Montagne, billed as “our last word in business,” and was clearly framed as an amusing take on the news.  Kelly and Montagne made sport of the fact that a Mr. Dutch Koch shares the same surname as that of our company, even musing that he’s also been “confused with the big soda maker” – Coca-Cola, it seems.  Kelly quipped that “he does not say which cola he prefers” before cutting away to what sounds like bongo drum music.
      But there is nothing even remotely funny about a person’s life being threatened and NPR ought to be ashamed that simple fact of decency has to be pointed out. 


      More Koch Derangement Syndrome from the LEFTY NPR.

      Real funny = NOT

    • Janet Napolitano clarifies immigration program – disappoints sanctuary cities – Napolitano defended the program Monday as vital to immigration enforcement.

      "Where immigration is concerned, the federal government fundamentally sets the policy." She said communities will benefit from the tool.

      "Let's assume we have 11 million people in the country illegally," she said. If Congress can provide enough enforcement funding to remove perhaps 400,000 of them annually, she added, "How are we going to set those priorities? One big priority is who is violating criminal laws."


      The program is a good one and is a start only.

      Immigration is a federal perogative and the Obama Administration needs to do more.

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for April 19th on 15:11

    These are my links for April 19th from 15:11 to 15:57:

    • Pay Attention to Sarah Palin! – In the two years and eight months that Sarah Palin has been a political celebrity, I've never heard a conservative complain about the media ignoring her. Not until last night. That was when Palin's web consigliere Rebecca Mansour loaded up Twitter and started tweeting at official media accounts to ask when they hadn't given more coverage to Palin's Tea Party speech in Madison this past weekend. She tag-teamed with Jim Nolte, the editor of Andrew Breitbart's Big Hollywood site — that's why @jimnolte is mentioned in the tweets.


      Read it all.

      Well, Sarah's stock has fallen the past few months and Mansour has to justify her existence if Palin does not seek the Presidency.

    • ‘Koch brothers’ confusion results in death threat for Iowa company – A case of mistaken identity has entangled a small family-owned Des Moines company in union protests and led to a death threat.

      Angry callers are mistaking Koch Brothers, a Des Moines office supply firm, with the brothers who own Koch Industries, the global energy conglomerate. Billionaires Charles and David Koch have fought Wisconsin unions, financed the tea party and opposed climate change rules.

      Dutch Koch, president of the Des Moines company, wants everyone to know he’s not one of those Koch brothers, and he’s not politically active.

      “I initially thought it was humorous to be confused with a multibillionaire,” he said, but then a death threat was left on his answering machine. Koch reported the call to the FBI, which he said traced it to a California man.


      Read it all.

      Koch Derangement Syndrome strikes again

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for April 18th on 06:22

    These are my links for April 18th from 06:22 to 06:53:

    • Koch Derangement syndrome: Contango Confusion – The basic problem with a site like Think Progress is that its "reporters," ill-informed, uneducated, inexperienced amateurs like Lee Fang, try to write about subjects of which they have no understanding. Worse yet, they slander the very people who do understand those topics–the people who produce products and make our economy go.

      There is another level of irony here. Koch Industries is a classic example of an American company that doesn't just push paper, but actually makes products. Its business is production, not "speculation." Think Progress, on the other hand, is funded by one of the world's most successful speculators: George Soros. Soros has made billions by manipulating markets, without ever producing anything. He is the definitive speculator and market manipulator (in particular, currency markets) of the 20th century. If Soros bothered to read what his minion Lee Fang wrote, he no doubt would burst out in laughter at Fang's ignorance. But that, apparently, doesn't bother Soros. He is happy to promote ignorance as long as it advances his own selfish political interests.


      Read it all as Power Line blog fisks Lee Fang of Think Progress

    • Koch Derangement Syndrome: De-Fanging Think Progress’ Attack Dog – The name Lee Fang is far from a household name. However, from his perch at the Soros-funded think tank Center for American Progress, Fang has the dubious distinction of promulgating questionable Koch Industries political conspiracies perhaps more than any other person.

      Along the way, Fang has made a laughable number of errors in his reporting on Koch. However, he might have outdone himself with his latest piece on the Kochs' supposedly manipulative oil speculation practices. Over at Powerline, they have thoroughly dissected Fang's article and the level of ignorance exposed is breathtaking. I encourage you to read the whole Powerline post as it gets into quite a lot of detail about commodity speculation, but this addendum to the post should give you a general feel for how bad it it is:

      I wrote the book on manipulation (The Law, Economics, and Public Policy of Market Power Manipulation, Kluwer, 1996). I've also published 10 scholarly articles in economics journals and law reviews on the subject. My next book (Structural Models of Commodity Price Dynamics, Cambridge UP, forthcoming) is all about the determinants of contango, backwardation, storage, etc. Based on 25 years of scholarly research and market experience, I can say that Fang the Farcical knows not the first thing about either manipulation or commodities pricing. You would think that Soros could have found a junior assistant trader to teach Fang the basics. But then there wouldn't have been a story, would there?


      Koch DerangementSyndrome indeed

    • Card Check: California Moves To Force Unionization On Workers Via Intimidation & Coercive Tactics – In recent weeks, the California state Senate passed legislation on a party-line vote that would eliminate the secret ballot in union organizing elections for farm workers.  The legislation, SB 104 by Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, would allow farm workers to form a collective bargaining union through a majority sign up – essentially instituting “card check” at the state level.  And of course, Big Labor is ecstatic, trying to portray the vote in the state Senate as a victory for workers.  But sometimes the truth just slips out and the real intentions are revealed.  A key strategist for the farm workers union in California was quoted as saying, “this is about power.”


      Read it all

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for April 15th on 19:19

    These are my links for April 15th from 19:19 to 19:30:

    • Left-Wing Non-Disclosure Group (Co-Founded By Barack Obama) Attacking Kochs For Non-Disclosure – There's something else, though. Demos has never disclosed its donors, but one of its co-founders and original trustees was none other than the young Illinois state senator Barack Obama, who as president has been very critical of non-disclosure groups. Obama criticized the Supreme Court's decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, saying that it will invite a "new stampede of special interest money" into the political system. He also said during last year's election that "secret donors'" money could be flowing into Republican coffers. Recently, some of his own allies have started their own non-disclosure political action committees.


      Not really surprising, now is it?

    • Koch Derangement syndrome: New York Times partially corrects a non-transparent attack dog – On April 4 the New York Times carried an op-ed column by one David Callahan that read much like Soros-sponsored attacks on the Koch brothers that we’ve been seeing for some time. He wrote, in part, “Though some of their organizational ties are public, many are unknown, thanks to a provision in the tax code that allows the Koch brothers and other donors, on both the left and the right, to conceal the recipients of their largess, even as they get to write it off on their taxes.” Callahan is a senior fellow at Demos, a left-wing group that receives funding from George Soros through his Open Society Institute.


      Read it all.

      The hypocrisy on the LEFT is really beyond belief.

    • Three largest online poker sites indicted and shut down by FBI – The founders of the three largest online poker sites were indicted on Friday in what could serve as a death blow to a thriving industry.

      Eleven executives at PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker, Absolute Poker and a number of their affiliates were charged with bank fraud and money laundering in an indictment unsealed in a Manhattan court. Two of the defendants were arrested on Friday morning in Utah and Nevada. Federal agents are searching for the others.

      Prosecutors are seeking to immediately shut down the sites and to eventually send the executives to jail and to recover $3 billion from the companies. By Friday afternoon Full Tilt Poker’s site displayed a message explaining that “this domain name has been seized by the F.B.I. pursuant to an Arrest Warrant.”

      The online gambling industry has taken off over the last decade, drawing an estimated 15 million Americans to bet online.

      In 2006 Congress passed a law curtailing online gambling. Most of the leading sites found ways to work around the law, but prosecutors allege that in doing so they broke the law.

      “These defendants concocted an elaborate criminal fraud scheme, alternately tricking some U.S. banks and effectively bribing others to assure the continued flow of billions in illegal gambling profits,” Preet Bharara, the U.S. attorney in Manhattan, said in a statement.


      Surprised that Holder and Obama actually enforced the law.

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for March 29th on 14:19

    These are my links for March 29th from 14:19 to 14:25:

    • Eric Cantor raises stakes, nixes another budget stopgap: ‘Time is up’ – House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) raised the stakes in the budget showdown on Capitol Hill Tuesday by ruling out another stopgap funding measure.

      “I want to see a long-term CR here,” he said. “We've got bigger things to deal with. Time is up here."


      Ten days and counting for the GOP and Dems to come up with a compromise budget or the government closes.

    • Sen. Charles Schumer coordinates Democrat Budget Attack on GOP – Caught on Open Mic – Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., a member of the Democratic Senate leadership, got on a conference call with reporters Tuesday morning without realizing the reporters were already listening in. Schumer thought he was on a private line with four Democratic senators who were to talk with reporters about the current budget stalemate.

      Schumer instructed the group, made up of Sens. Barbara Boxer of California, Tom Carper of Delaware, Ben Cardin of Maryland and Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, to tell reporters that the GOP is refusing to negotiate.

      He told the group to make sure they label the GOP spending cuts as "extreme."

      "I always use extreme, Schumer said. "That is what the caucus instructed me to use."

      Someone must have finally told Schumer that the media were listening and he stopped talking midsentence.


      Well, how about that – the Democrats are political gaming the budget talks.

      Who would have known?

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for March 28th on 14:08

    These are my links for March 28th from 14:08 to 16:10:

    • Harry Reid urges GOP to ditch Tea Party – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Monday urged Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) to ditch members of the Tea Party and cut a deal with Democrats to avert a government shutdown.

      Reid insisted it is those GOP internal divisions that are threatening to shut down the government after April 8, in less than two weeks.

      “For the sake of our economy, it’s time for mainstream Republicans to stand up to the Tea Party and rejoin Democrats at the table to negotiate a responsible solution that cuts spending while protecting jobs," he said.

      Last week Reid put $7.5 billion in discretionary cuts and $3.5 billion in mandatory savings on the table as a counteroffer to the $51 billion in additional cuts the GOP is seeking.

      This week Democrats are mulling raising the offer to $20 billion. But Democratic aides insist it is the divided GOP that must make the next move and come back to the negotiating table, not Democrats who must continue to negotiate with themselves and up their offer.


      Harry Reid is going senile.

      Cut the damn budet, Dingy Harry – end of story

    • Is Media Matters breaking the law in its ‘war’ on Fox News? – Media Matters, the George Soros-backed legion of liberal agit-prop shock troops based in the nation's capital, has declared war on Fox News, and in the process quite possibly stepped across the line of legality.

      David Brock, MM's founder, was quoted Saturday by Politico promising that his organization is mounting "guerrila warfare and sabotage" against Fox News, which he said "is not a news organization. It is the de facto leader of the GOP, and it is long past time that it is treated as such by the media, elected officials and the public.”

      To that end, Brock told Politico that MM will “focus on [News Corp. CEO Rupert] Murdoch and trying to disrupt his commercial interests …" Murdoch is the founder of Fox News and a media titan with newspaper, broadcast, Internet and other media countries around the world.

      There is nothing in the Politico article to suggest that Brock, who was paid just under $300,000 in 2009, according to the group's most recently available tax return, plans to ask the IRS to change his organization's tax status as a 501(C)(3) tax-exempt educational foundation.

      Being a C3 puts MM in the non-profit, non-commercial sector, and it also bars the organzation from participating in partisan political activity. This new, more aggressive stance, however, appears to run directly counter to the government's requirements for maintaining a C3 tax status.

      Since Brock classifies Fox News as the "leader" of the Republican Party, by his own description he is involving his organization in a partisan battle. High-priced K Street lawyers can probably find a federal judge or a sympathetic IRS bureaucrat willing to either look the other way or accept some sort of MM rationale such as that it is merely providing educational information about a partisan group.

      But in the IRS application for 501(C)(3) tax-exempt educational foundation status, Section VIII, Question I asks the applicant: "Do you support or oppose candidates in political campaigns in any way?" (Emphasis added).

      Under Brock's definition of Fox News, it appears he is setting MM on a course of actively opposing all Republican candidates. Brandon Kiser at The Right Sphere blog argues that this new statement of MM's mission means it must change its tax status.


      Read it all.

      I don't think Media Matters is to impressed with the media exposure of their "WAR on Fox News." Probably neither are Rupert Murdoch's numerous law firms that are more than likely preparing lawsuits.

    • The battle to define Charles and David Koch – The LEFT Exposed – When it comes to the suddenly infamous Koch brothers, there’s one thing the conservative Weekly Standard and liberal filmmaker Robert Greenwald can agree on: The Kochs, Charles and David, have been a boon to the American political left.

      “For progressives confused at the heated opposition to their do-gooder agenda, the Kochs became convenient scapegoats,” asserts the Weekly Standard’s Matthew Continetti this week in a long cover story defending the Kochs. Liberals in the media have “ascribed every bad thing under the sun to the brothers and their checkbooks. Pollution, the Tea Party, global warming denial—the Kochs were responsible,” Continetti writes, asserting that in recent months “whenever you turned on MSNBC or clicked on the Huffington Post you’d see the Kochs described in terms more applicable to Lex Luthor and General Zod.”


      Read it all.

      Fancy that: A George Soros funded "War" against the Koch Brothers = some grassroots outrage…. RIGHT

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for March 28th on 09:30

    These are my links for March 28th from 09:30 to 13:45:

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for March 28th on 09:23

    These are my links for March 28th from 09:23 to 09:27:

    • Bioenergy Crop Company Plants Its Flag in India – Super Green Biofuels Inc., which aims to make fuel from the inedible seed of the Jatropha plant, says it is expanding its operation into India.

      Better known as SG Biofuels, the company has amassed a huge library of DNA and genome information about Jatropha, so it can design hybrid seeds to best fit the land, sun and growing patterns of different areas.

      “Our expansion into India marks a significant milestone for the company as we continue to expand our commercialization efforts,” SG Biofuels Chief Executive Officer Kirk Haney said. “Our ability to quickly develop and scale productive Jatropha plantations using elite, high performing material will play a significant role in providing energy security and economic development while reducing greenhouse emissions.”

      SG recruited Subhas Pattnaik as director of operations for the market. Pattnaik formerly led operations for Mission NewEnergy Limited in India, where he managed the rollout and operations of the largest Jatropha plantation acreage in the world, spanning more than 200,000 acres, 124,000 farmers and five provinces, said a March 7 SG news release announcing the company’s expansion into India.

      According to a report by the Office of Scientific & Technical Information of the U.S. Department of Energy, the shortage of reliable, inexpensive and sustainable energy is a key factor in keeping India and Brazil at poverty levels higher than necessary. Both areas are also potentially prime Jatropha growing areas.


      Read it all

      Another example of American companies expanding into other countries bringing technology to produce clean energy.

    • Koch Membrane Systems: Filtering the world’s water is a growth business – When the Brazilian state of Sao Paulo needed to cleanse large volumes of waste water, it turned to Koch Membrane Systems Inc. in Wilmington — a company that is finding a growing market for its filtration technologies in places where development is running up against water supplies.

      Last year, for the first time, water and waste-water systems accounted for more than half of Koch Membrane’s sales.

      In Brazil, Koch’s polymer membranes are at the heart of a $150 million water reuse project that is one of the largest such projects in the Southern Hemisphere.

      Koch was selected by Aquapolo Ambiental SA, a joint venture of Foz do Brasil, the environmental engineering company of Odebrecht SA, a construction and engineering group in Brazil, and Sao Paulo’s state water and sewer company.

      The facility now under construction will filter up to 265 gallons per second of waste water from a sewage treatment plant.

      The water will be used by local industrial customers, who will be able to draw less from the drinking water system — saving enough drinking water to supply about 600,000 residents.

      Koch Membrane also sells filtration systems in China, Egypt, India, and Singapore; it expects water filtration to be at least 75 percent of its business by 2015.


      Read it all.

      American business cleaning up the environment – fancy that.

      Yet, the LEFT demonizes the Koch Brothers. How ridiculous is that?

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for March 27th on 17:45

    These are my links for March 27th from 17:45 to 19:17:

    • Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker in Trouble? – Like Ann Coulter, Higgins worries that Walker isn’t doing enough to get his message across. … What would that require?

      1) Pointing out the growing disparity between cushy union contracts and the working situation of average American taxpayers. Horror stories are useful here;

       2) Noting that eliminating government workers’ ”collective bargaining rights” doesn’t mean taking away employee’s free speech rights, or the right to have an organization that advocates for them. It means taking away specific, monopoly-like special privileges granted to unions during the New Deal and Great Society years (including the right to be the sole and exclusive bargaining agent for workers, a requirement that employers bargain “in good faith”–whatever that means–and for many government workers the automatic deduction of dues from paychecks).

      3) Pointing out that government unions aren’t like private unions, in that there aren’t any profits in the government to redistribute, union work rules tend to reinforce government’s inherent tendencies toward inefficiency, governments don’t have to stay competitive, the threat of a legal or illegal strike is close to blackmail, and unlike in private industry workers get to try to choose and then buy off the bosses who negotiate with them by donating money and manpower to campaigns.


      Read it all.

      I don't think so.

      When the television ads start – when the elections count – voters will understand these points and if they vote Walker et. al. out of office, they do so at their own peril.

    • The Paranoid Style in Liberal Politics – The left’s obsession with the Koch brothers – David Koch’s secretary told him the news. This was in February, during the rowdy standoff between Wisconsin governor Scott Walker and demonstrators backing 14 Democratic legislators who’d fled to Illinois rather than vote on a bill weakening public employee unions. Koch’s secretary said that an editor for a left-wing website, the Buffalo Beast, had telephoned the governor posing as David Koch and recorded the conversation. And Walker had fallen for it! He’d had a 20-minute conversation with this bozo, not once questioning the caller’s identity. But then how could Walker have known? Sure, David Koch was a billionaire whose company had donated to his campaign. But Koch (pronounced “Coke”) had never talked to Walker in his life.


      Read it all

  • Pinboard Links

    Flap’s Links and Comments for March 24th on 14:28

    These are my links for March 24th from 14:28 to 14:31:

    • Democrats Call Koch Industries ‘Extreme,’ but Justify Taking Their Money – Ben Smith reported this morning that the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee sent out a fundraising email, signed by Harry Reid, that tries to ride the anti-Koch bandwagon. Here's the relevant part of the email:

      Senate Democrats are fighting back each and every day. But with only a slim four-seat majority, we have no margin for error. If Republicans can knock just a few bricks free from our firewall, they’ll force through their extreme agenda faster than you can say “Koch brothers.” With the GOP on the attack and with 23 Democratic-held seats to defend, we have no time to spare. We must act now to keep our majority standing strong. I need your help!

      The DSCC must raise $150,371 by our March 31 FEC deadline to keep the Republicans at bay.

      Smith notes the DSCC got about $30,000 from the Koch family in the last election cycle. He also reported back in September that a limited number of Democratic candidates have also received Koch money, including sitting senators Ben Nelson of Nebraska, Mark Pryor of Arkansas, and Mary Landrieu of Louisiana. New York's Charles Schumer, the third-ranking Democrat in the Senate, also received $1,000 from Koch Industries in the last election.


      How do you spell HYPOCRITE?

    • Madison Wisconsin teachers given until April 15 to rescind fake doctors’ notes – Madison teachers who missed school last month to attend protests and turned in fraudulent doctor's notes have been given until April 15 to rescind those notes, officials said Thursday.
      The district received more than 1,000 notes from teachers, human resources director Bob Nadler said. A couple hundred of those were ruled fraudulent because they appeared to be written by doctors at the Capitol protests against Gov. Scott Walker's proposal to limit collective bargaining.
      Teachers who don't rescind fraudulent notes could receive a disciplinary letter of suspension, the most serious form of discipline aside from termination, Nadler said. The suspension would be considered already served — the time missed during the protests.
      "We didn't want to give anybody more time off," Nadler said. "They can't afford it. We can't afford to have them gone any more. I don't think kids need their teacher gone another two days."
      Teachers who rescind their note would receive a more minor "letter of expectation" and be docked pay at the end of the school year for the four missed days.
      Nadler said the majority of notes came from doctor's offices and the district doesn't plan on calling each one to determine if the excuse was legitimate.


      Slap on the wrist and if they are honest get docked pay.

      what a system! NOT