thursday news bites

Former VP Cheney provides an impassioned defense of Bush administration foreign policy.

President Obama continues to insist that Gitmo must be closed, even as the Senate attempts to block funding for his grand scheme.

Senator DeMint writes an NRO op-ed critical of government-provided health care.

And my great gov Sanford continues to fight the state legislature after they overrode his veto of most of the stimulus money.  I’m cheering him on, but I’m not sure how this will all play out in the end.  He does tend to get a little scorched-earth about the things he passionately believes in, and some supporters might be turned off by his approach.  But he’s right in what he’s doing and the people of this state who aren’t brain-dead sheep (or dependent Democrats – same diff) will support our governor.

Nothing wrong with my state…the Republican Party here in SC is alive and kicking.  We have thrived under the outstanding outgoing Chairman, Katon Dawson, and our red state status will continue with our new Chairman (chairwoman?) Karen Floyd.   However, Senator Graham still has some work to do with the conservatives in this state, who he continues to tweak, even though we decided to vote for him in spite of a couple serious disagreements we had with him.

just say no

Senator DeMint gives the Paulson bailout plan a very emphatic thumbs down.

From his Senate website:

After reviewing the Administration’s proposed bailout plan, I believe it is completely unacceptable. This plan does nothing to address the misguided government policies that created this mess and it could make matters much worse by socializing an entire sector of the U.S. economy. This plan fails to oversee or regulate the government failures that led to this crisis. Instead it greatly increases the role for Secretary Paulson whose market predictions have been consistently wrong in the last year, and provides corporate welfare for investment firms on Wall Street that don’t want to disclose their assets and sell them to private investors for market rates. Most Americans are paying their bills on time and investing responsibly and should not be forced to pay for the reckless actions of some on Wall Street, especially when no one can guarantee this will solve our current problems.

This plan will not only cause our nation to fall off the debt cliff, it could send the value of the dollar into a free-fall as investors around the world question our ability to repay our debts. It’s also very likely that this plan will extend the cycle of bailouts, encouraging other companies to behave in reckless ways that create the need for even more bailouts, triggering an endless run on our treasury. This plan may make things look better for Wall Street in the next couple months, but the long-term consequences to our economy could be disastrous.

There are much better ways of dealing with this problem than forcing American taxpayers to pay for every asset some investor doesn’t want anymore. We should start by reforming government policies and programs that created this mess, including the Federal Reserve’s easy money policy, the congressional charters of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and the Community Reinvestment Act. Then Congress should pass a number of permanent and proven pro-growth reforms to encourage capital formation and boost asset values. We need to make permanent reductions in the corporate tax and the capital gains tax rates. We have the second highest corporate tax rate in the world, which encourages companies to take jobs and investment overseas.

It’s a sad fact, but Americans can no longer trust the economic information they are getting from this Administration. The Administration said the bailout of Bear Stearns would stop the bleeding and solve the problem, but they were wrong. They said $150 billion in new government spending using rebate checks would solve the problem, but they were wrong again. They said new authority to bailout Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would solve the problem without being used, but they were wrong again. Now they want us to trust them to spend nearly a trillion dollars on more government bailouts. It’s completely irresponsible and I cannot support it.

My Senator has the right idea here. This $700 billion bailout doesn’t provide any accountability or address any of the problems that got our economy where it is today.  It will, as others have said, give Secretary Paulson a virtual blank check without any promise of results.  It is irresponsible, and the Bush administration should go back to the drawing board, knowing that many Republicans will not support this.  If John McCain has any maverick tendencies left after he finishes ripping greedy people and Wall Street fat cats –neither of which have primary responsibility for the mortgage mess we find ourselves in– he should seriously consider showing up and voting against this bailout.  Republicans will follow McCain in opposing this, but he needs to take the lead in fighting for the taxpayers.

conservative cred

My favorite senator Jim DeMint has it, and he’s willing to help out John McCain. Senator DeMint is the kind of conservative that McCain should pick for VP. We need DeMint where he is now, but someone like him would be awesome as second in line to McCain.

Here he is defending McCain’s health care plan.

Why not nationalize health care and allow the government to control the entire system? Because as Americans we believe in the individual and in freedom.

Since the dawn of our nation, Americans have resisted government control over their daily lives. Unlike Europeans who have mortgaged their futures in the name of nationalized health care, we have an innate distrust of big government schemes. We have seen time and time again that the greatness of our nation comes from its people, not from the government. Perhaps most importantly, we understand, as Thomas Jefferson understood, that “Government big enough to supply everything you need is big enough to take everything you have.” Jefferson went on to explain that “the course of history shows that as a government grows, liberty decreases.”

The history that Jefferson observed then is the same that we do today. Those principles still hold true, and as we consider the health care crisis we face today we would do well as Americans to bear these thoughts in mind.

Do we want a solution that offers American more freedom, more choice and more competition? Or do we forsake our principles and follow the path of the Europeans, which has resulted in rationed health care, less choice, less freedom and future fiscal ruin?

I’m much more confident that Senator DeMint understands the way conservatism is supposed to work when applied to the federal bureaucracy than I am in McCain’s grasp of the concept. But his endorsement of McCain’s health care plan goes a long way with me, and I’m sure, with many of my fellow conservatives.