Right in Obama's Backyard
These pictures from a recent rally in Chicago say it all!
The key to understanding Obama's predicament is to realize that while he ran convincingly as a repudiation of Bush, he is in fact doubling down on his predecessor's big-government policies and perpetual crisis-mongering. From the indefinite detention of alleged terrorists to gays in the military to bailing out industries large and small, Obama has been little more than the keeper of the Bush flame.
Indeed, it took the two of them to create the disaster that is the 2009 budget, racking up a deficit that has already crossed the historic $1 trillion mark. Beyond pushing the 'emergency' $787 billion stimulus package (even while acknowledging that the vast majority of funds would be released in 2010 and beyond), Obama signed a $410 billion omnibus spending bill and a $106 billion supplemental spending bill to cover 'emergency' expenses in Iraq and Afghanistan (and, improbably, a 'cash for clunkers' program).
Despite pledges to achieve a 'net spending cut' by targeting earmarks and wasteful spending, Obama rubber-stamped more than 9,000 earmarks and asked government agencies to trim a paltry $100 million in spending this year, 0.003 percent of the federal budget. In the same way that Bush claimed to be cutting government even while increasing real spending by more than 70 percent, Obama seems to believe that saying one thing, while doing another, somehow makes it so.
- Washington Post
It's crazy for a group of mere mortals to try to design 15 percent of the U.S. economy. It's even crazier to do it by August.
Yet that is what some members of Congress presume to do. They intend, as the New York Times puts it, "to reinvent the nation's health care system."
Let that sink in. A handful of people who probably never even ran a small business actually think they can reinvent the health care system.
Politicians and bureaucrats clearly have no idea how complicated markets are. Every day people make countless tradeoffs, in all areas of life, based on subjective value judgments and personal information as they delicately balance their interests, needs and wants. Who is in a better position than they to tailor those choices to best serve their purposes? Yet the politicians believe they can plan the medical market the way you plan a birthday party.
Leave aside how much power the state would have to exercise over us to run the medical system. Suffice it say that if government attempts to control our total medical spending, sooner or later, it will have to control us.
- John Stossel
Saving the Past
This is the Amherst Survival Center as it looked 125 years ago in 1884. It was the North Amherst School in those days.
Here is a postcard showing how it looked in 1910.
The years have taken their toll, but fortunately work is now underway to restore and preserve the building.
Some work is being done to reinforce the foundation, the stones at the base of which haven't seen the light of day since the 1800's.
Assume the Position
The back of a truck parked at UMass.