CHUCK MUTH'S NEWS & VIEWS

The good, the bad & the ugly. Liberal excesses. Conservative successes. Clowns to the Left. Jokers to the Right. Read all about 'em in Chuck's FREE hard-hitting, no B.S. newsletter of current events and political goings-on you won't find in the "mainstream press."

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Chuck Muth is President and CEO of Citizen Outreach and a professional political consultant. Mr. Muth is a professional campaign trainer, a newsletter publisher and talk-show host who regularly appears on political TV and radio programs.

Saturday

News & Views, 2/26/05

YESTERDAY IN DC CONFIDENTIAL...

* Choosing sides and Arlen Specter * A long overdue tribute to veterans in our nation’s capital * Canada scoots out from U.S. umbrella of security against missile attack * Getting under Harry Reid’s skin * Wal-Mart spanks the union...again * Democrat senator tells Republican voters which pro-GOP companies they should do business with * Lynn Swann goes deep for political “hail Mary” pass * Charles Barkley slams and jams the “Ten Commandments” judge * Tony Dane takes his circus act on the road to Mississippi

An annual subscription for Chuck Muth’s daily DC Confidential e-newsletter is just $2.95 per month...or $25 per year. Subscribe online by going to: http://chuckmuth.com/onlinestore.htm . Or simply mail a check or money order (don’t forget to include your email address) to: Chuck Muth & Associates, 1315 Wilson Point Road, Middle River, MD, 21220.

WITNESS BACKS UP PANTANO

“An eyewitness to the killing of two Iraqis by Marine Corps 2nd Lt. Ilario Pantano says in a sworn statement that the officer, who has been charged with murder, twice ordered the insurgents to stop in Arabic before opening fire, according to documents obtained by The Washington Times. Lt. Pantano had told investigators that he fired at the Iraqis after they walked toward him and refused to stop, according to the documents. His platoon had stopped the Iraqis as they left a house where insurgents were making bombs.
“...The sworn statements provided the first inside look at a case that has drawn national attention because of Lt. Pantano's stellar record and the nature of the enemy that he faced in Iraq. Lt. Pantano has made no public comment since Feb. 1, when the Marine Corps charged him with two counts of premeditated murder. If convicted at a court-martial, he faces the death penalty.”

- Washington Times, 2/25/05 [EDITOR’S NOTE: The Times story also points out that the sergeant who filed the complaint against Pantano was “disgruntled” because “Lt. Pantano removed him from several jobs.” Learn more about this bizarre prosecution of this stellar Marine by reading my recent interview with his lawyer, Charles Gittins. Just go to the “Always Right” page at www.citizenoutreach.com]

THE “F” IN FCC DOESN’T STAND FOR “FREE”

“This whole ‘public's airwaves’ is nothing less than an excuse for government control. The first job of any despot is to control the broadcasting.”

- Talk-show host Neal Boortz

TRILLION DOLLAR QUESTION

“If the government is paying for my anti-cholesterol medication, what incentive is there for me to put down the cheeseburger?”

- Radley Balko of the Cato Institute

PUSHING THE ENVELOPE

“USPS is expected to increase the price of stamps in 2006 and (Sam Ryan of the Lexington Institute) says the price of stamps should be going down instead of up. He is pushing for privatization of the postal service to help drive down costs and break up the mail monopoly. ‘Despite new technology - like modern reader/sorters that process over 30,000 pieces of mail per hour - stamp prices have risen with inflation since 1970. This is absolutely unacceptable,’ Ryan said in a press release. ‘Imagine if the price of a phone call or sending an e-mail rose with inflation for 30 years.’”

- NewsTribuneOnline, 2/25/05

YUMMY GUMMI ROAD KILL

“Animal rights activists are disgusted by a new candy from Kraft Foods Inc. that's shaped like critters run over by cars - complete with tire treads. The fruity-flavored Trolli Road Kill Gummi Candy - in shapes of partly flattened snakes, chickens and squirrels - fosters cruelty toward animals, according to the New Jersey Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The society is considering petition drives, boycotts and letter-writing campaigns to get the candy pulled from the market, Stanton said.”

- Associated Press, 2/25/05

SNAPSHOT FOR ‘08

“Only 1,348 days until the presidential election, and Hillary Clinton is looking like the front-runner. In part this is because she's the only runner (other than John Kerry, who seems to think he's still challenging President Bush). The diminished Democrats have a weak bench, and while the GOP has a surfeit of plausible candidates, there's no heir apparent to Mr. Bush.”

- James Taranto, OpinionJournal.com, 2/25/05

THE COST OF IMMIGRATION

“A new report from Columbia University economists David Weinstein and Donald Davis estimates the net economic losses from immigration to Americans at $68 billion.”

- Jennifer Harper, “Inside Politics,” 2/25/05

GUNS SAVE LIVES I

“The Bush Administration would have us believe that most illegal immigrants (or ‘undocumented workers’ in the lingo of political correctness) are merely looking for a better life and taking only those jobs that Americans do not want. Kerry Morales isn't buying that line. ‘Maybe 20 years ago the illegals were innocent, hard-working people,’ she tells the San Antonio Express-News. ‘Not any more. Now they're extremely dangerous. They mean violence.’ Morales, a South Texas rancher, says illegal immigrants have cut down her fences, stolen her pickup truck and broken into her home, once invading her bedroom and nearly strangling her. She says they fled after she reached for her gun.”

- Columnist Cal Thomas

GUNS SAVE LIVES II

“David Hernandez Arroyo was in the middle of a bitter child support dispute. As his ex-wife arrived at the (Tyler, Texas) courthouse yesterday Arroyo was waiting with an AK-47. He killed her with his first shots and then aimed for and shot his son. At that point Mark Wilson happened on the scene. Mark Wilson is a civilian. He wasn't a law enforcement officer. Mark Wilson did, however, have a gun on him.

“Wilson started firing at Arroyo as Arroyo was trying to finish his son off. Wilson was killed in the exchange. Another civilian with a gun started firing at Arroyo, who ran to his pickup and fled. Arroyo was cornered by police a short time later and killed.

“Arroyo's son is alive today. He's alive because a civilian with a gun intervened. This is just one of the instances yesterday where a civilian with a gun saved either his life or someone else's.”

- Talk-show host Neal Boortz

SOCIALISM INSECURITY

In response to this week’s Survey Says! Question, “How would you best describe the nature of the Social Security system?” almost half of you answered that it is either an “insurance program” or an “entitlement.” With that in mind, please consider the following points made by conservative economics Prof. Walter Williams in his column last week:

1.) Social Security is NOT an “entitlement.” According to Williams the United States Supreme Court has ruled TWICE “that Americans have no legal right to Social Security payments.”

2.) Social Security is NOT an insurance program, again citing a Supreme Court ruling in 1937, noting that Social Security “taxes are to be paid into the Treasury like internal-revenue taxes generally, and are not earmarked in any way.”

Clearly Social Security is at best a “government assistance” program; at worst, a form of welfare. More accurately, as many of you noted in emails to me regarding this question, it’s a Ponzi scheme.

Nevertheless, that so many CONSERVATIVES don’t quite understand the nature of the program itself indicates that President Bush and Republican reformers in Congress are going to have a VERY tough time fixing the program any time soon.

WHAT KIND OF MICKEY MOUSE OUTFIT IS THIS?

(This is an shortened version of a joke forwarded by a News & Views reader...)

Once upon a time, a Sultan was blessed with the birth of a son after years of hoping. The boy immediately became the apple of his father's eye. Just before his son's sixth birthday, the Sultan said to him, "Son, I love you very much. Your birthday is coming soon. What would you like?"His son, who had grown to love Disney, replied, "Daddy, I would like a Mickey Mouse outfit and a Goofy outfit."

So his father bought him the Democratic Party and CBS News.

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Published by:
Chuck Muth
1315 Wilson Point Road
Middle River, MD 21220
E-mail: chuck@chuckmuth.com

Friday

News & Views, 2/25/05


YESTERDAY IN DC CONFIDNETIAL...

* Wildlife manager fined $3,500 for saving endangered tadpoles * Snarlin’ Arlen’s revenge * Crazy Aunt on the Bench issues another doozy of a ruling * People of Colorado will have to do their representatives’ job...again * LP misses boat on ILLEGAL immigration * Where to find a hilarious “rap” video which could be titled “The Bible & the Bobby Sox Girl”

An annual subscription for Chuck Muth’s daily DC Confidential e-newsletter is just $2.95 per month...or $25 per year. Subscribe online by going to: http://chuckmuth.com/onlinestore.htm . Or simply mail a check or money order (don’t forget to include your email address) to: Chuck Muth & Associates, 1315 Wilson Point Road, Middle River, MD, 21220.

ISSUES & ANSWERS

Rep. Charlie Norwood thinks America should take a page from Iraq’s playbook and bring free elections without fear of injury or reprisal to...union workers. In an op/ed column yesterday, Norwood talks about the un-American “card checks” being forced on workers by labor bosses, as well as his proposed legislation to end them. A good read...and a great idea. Check it out on our Issues & Answers page at www.citizenoutreach.com

YER GUMMINT SKOOLS INAXION

“The Arizona Republic reports that the Scottsdale school district is adopting fancy new titles for many of its employees. Barbara Levine, who ‘used to be known as the receptionist,’ is now the ‘Director of First Impressions,’ which we guess means she's allowed to ignore anyone she already knows who comes into the office. The bus driver is now called the ‘transporter of learners,’ and the assistant superintendent for elementary schools is (take a breath) ‘executive director for elementary schools and excelling teaching and learning.’"

- James Taranto’s “Best of the Web,” 2/24/05

GOING IN EXACTLY THE WRONG DIRECTION

“What a difference a decade makes. This year, President Bush announced an $18 million increase in the NEA’s (National Endowment for the Arts) budget, the largest boost in more than 20 years in an otherwise flat domestic funding blueprint.”

- Columnist Gary Andres

REGULATING OCEAN SWIMMING NEXT?

“Concerned that Americans are consuming salt at twice the recommended levels, a consumer group asked a federal court Thursday to force the government to regulate it. More than two decades after a similar lawsuit was dismissed, the Center for Science in the Public Interest is trying anew to get salt categorized as a food additive. The change would give the Food and Drug Administration more authority to regulate salt in food, whether through warnings on packages and menus or mandatory or voluntary limits. Salt is ‘generally recognized as safe’ by the FDA now, leaving it less regulated.”

- Associated Press

NO FEDERAL MEDDLING LEFT BEHIND

“Concluding a yearlong study on the effectiveness of President Bush's sweeping education law, No Child Left Behind, a bipartisan panel of lawmakers drawn from many states yesterday pronounced it a flawed, convoluted and unconstitutional education reform initiative that has usurped state and local control of public schools."

- The New York Times

BACK TO BASICS

"Instead of proposing more top-down fixes for education, the president should use his position to push for the return of control of education to states and localities and urge state-level reforms that return the control of education to parents."

- David Salisbury of the Cato Institute

WHEN IN ROMANIA, FLAT TAX AS THE ROMANIANS…

“After enduring the 22-year dictatorship of Nicolae Ceausescu, (Romania) is striving to gain a new measure of international respectability, solicit further foreign investment and replace its currency, the leu, with the euro. To that end, (Prime Minister Calin Popescu) Tariceanu introduced a 16 percent flat tax to replace corporate and personal income taxes that ranged from 18 and 40 percent for individuals and 25 percent for corporations. ‘We strongly support it as a source of wealth for all Romanians and foreign companies in Romania,’ he said in the Jan. 27 speech.”

- Robert Schroeder of MarketWatch

DULL BLADE

“This is the fastest any governor claiming to be a Reagan Republican has folded under the pressure of big-spending interests.”

- Grover Norquist of Americans for Tax Reform on newly-elected Indiana Gov. Mitch “The Blade” Daniels’ proposal for a one-year tax hike on people making over $100,000 a year

HILLARY THE CHURCH LADY

“Forget her prepared speeches, put aside her moderate statements on Iraq and abortion. This is how you know (Hillary Clinton’s) running for president in 2008. Ten days ago a reporter interviewed her in the halls of the Senate and asked if she planned to run for president. She did not say, ‘I'm too busy serving the people of New York to think about the future.’ She did not say, ‘Oh, I already have a heckuva lot on my plate.’ She said, ‘I have more than I can say grace over right now.’

“I have more than I can say grace over right now. What a wonderfully premeditated ad lib for the Age of Red State Dominance. I suggested a few weeks ago that Mrs. Clinton was about to get very, very religious. But her words came across as pious and smarmy, like Tammy Faye with a law degree. Maybe she still thinks in stereotypes; maybe she thinks that's what little Christian ladies talk like while they stay home baking cookies. Whatever, it was almost as good as her saying, ‘I'm running, is this not obvious to even the slowest of you?’"

- Columnist Peggy Noonan

ACTIONS SPEAK SOFTER THAN WORDS

"[Harvard President Larry] Summers' mistake was that he did not treat women badly. Take Summers' old boss, Bill Clinton, who was able to date while married, as his top female staffers (who considered themselves feminists) strove to protect him from nubile workers. In this politically correct era, words speak louder than actions: You can act like a sexist cad, but you can't talk as if you think a sexist cad conceivably might have a point.”

- Columnist Debra Saunders

EXPENSIVE MISSION CREEP

“After the first three years -- that is to say, beginning in 1940 -- you will pay, and your employer will pay, 1.5 cents for each dollar you earn, up to $3,000 a year. ... Beginning in 1943, you will pay 2 cents, and so will your employer, for every dollar you earn for the next 3 years. ... And finally, beginning in 1949, 12 years from now, you and your employer will each pay 3 cents on each dollar you earn, up to $3,000 a year. ... That is the most you will ever pay."

- 1936 government pamphlet on Social Security, as reprinted in a column by Walter Williams. By the way, workers and employers now pay over 15 cents on the dollar in Social Security taxes...on income up to $90,000 a year.

THE COMING CATASTROPHE: YOU DO THE MATH

“There are 48 million Social Security beneficiaries today, but in 2030 there will be 84 million. In 1950, there were 16 SS taxpayers for every recipient. Now there are only 3.3 taxpayers for every recipient, and that will be reduced 30 percent by 2030. Additionally, when SSI was formed, life-expectancy was 61 years, which is to say, most Americans did not make it to 65. Now, however, average life expectancy is 77.”

- Mark Alexander of the Federalist Patriot

A TAX BY ANY OTHER NAME STINKS AS BAD

“Social Security is simply a tax. Like all taxes, the money collected is spent immediately as general revenues to fund the federal government. The Social Security trust fund does not exist, and Social Security 'surpluses' are nothing more than an accounting ledger showing that contributions exceeded benefits paid for a given calendar year -- not that the excess was put aside. ... No matter what politicians promise, Social Security reform will not change the fact that your money is taken from your paycheck and sent to Washington, where it will be spent."

-Rep. Ron Paul, Texas Republican

SURVEY SAYS!

How would you best describe the nature of the Social Security system?

* A welfare program
* A government assistance program
* An insurance program
* An entitlement

Cast your vote by clicking the “Survey Says!” tab at www.citizenoutreach.com

FAMOUS LAST WORDS

“Congress has not unlimited powers to provide for the general welfare but only those specifically enumerated."

- Thomas Jefferson

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Published by:
Chuck Muth
1315 Wilson Point Road
Middle River, MD 21220
E-mail: chuck@chuckmuth.com

Thursday

News & Views, 2/24/05

PAGING RICHARD HATFIELD

Hey, Rich. Got your $25 check in the mail for your DC Confidential subscription yesterday...but it didn’t include your email address. Shoot it to me at chuck@chuckmuth.com and I’ll get you set up. Thanks!

TEACHER COUGHS UP APOLOGY

“The Brooklyn teacher who sent an American soldier demoralizing letters written by sixth-graders apologized yesterday and admitted blame. In a statement issued by the Department of Education, social studies teacher Alex Kunhardt said he regretted offending Pfc. Rob Jacobs.”

- New York Post, 2/23/05

SAVING PRIVATE JACOBS

For those of you who wrote asking how to contact Pfc. Rob Jacobs with some more encouraging thoughts than those expressed by Mr. Kunhardt’s sixth-grade class, you can send your letters to:

Pfc. Rob Jacobsc/o Christine EngallenaPO Box 1067Jackson, NJ 08527

GOIN’ POSTAL I

“A postal carrier who authorities say was stealing mail on his routes and trading it to identity thieves for drugs has been arrested. Kenneth Herman, 40, is being held in lieu of bail and is scheduled to be arraigned in San Diego Superior Court tomorrow, District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis said. Dumanis said investigators found stolen mail with Herman when he was arrested Saturday.”

- San Diego Tribune, 2/23/05

GOIN’ POSTAL II

“A 49-year-old Big Spring, TX postal carrier, Emmitt Howard Bartee II, bonded out of the Howard County Detention Center on charges of manufacturing, delivery and possession of methamphetamine on Thursday. Detectives picked Bartee up after watching him make what they said was a drug delivery, West Texas Narcotics Enforcement Task Force Investigator Scott Knight said. . . . Knight said Bartee now faces state charges, but investigators may pursue federal charges as well, since Bartee is accused of delivering narcotics from a postal vehicle.”

- Odessa American, 2/19/05

GOIN’ POSTAL III

“A U.S. postal carrier who delivered mail in St. Charles, IL, is accused of stealing a credit card from mail on her route and using it to purchase $4,000 in merchandise from two stores. Cindy M. Lucas...stole a credit card from a resident of the subdivision where she delivered mail and used it to purchase merchandise at [two stores] in St. Charles in December, according to police.”

- Daily Herald, 2/19/05

GOIN’ POSTAL IV

“A former U.S. Postal Service clerk from Pike County, PA was convicted by a federal jury this week of feigning impairment to collect disability benefits. . . . During the investigation, postal inspectors videotaped him splitting wood, operating a log splitter and installing road signs.”

- Scranton Times Tribune, 2/18/05

SUMMERS OF OUR DISCONTENT

“Guess what? I don’t care if members of the Harvard University faculty are mad at the school’s president, Lawrence Summers for implying that their sex means women generally don’t do as well in mathematics and the sciences as men. I don’t care if they force his resignation. I don’t care if he stays or goes or apologizes another hundred times in the vain hope he’ll get these crybabies off of his back.

“...Furthermore I think Summers was dumb for waving a red flag at his faculty and dumber for apologizing for what he said. One explanation, maybe, and then shut up was about all he owed them. The fact is, no job is worth putting up with the unmitigated crap being thrown at him by a bunch of petulant, spoiled brats passing themselves off as academics.”

- Lyn Nofziger, “Musings,” 2/24/05

LEAVING BEHIND NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND

“Utah's state Legislature is poised to repudiate the No Child Left Behind Act and spurn $116 million in federal aid tied to it because state policy-makers are fed up with federal control of education and dictates. ‘This is not a partisan issue; this is a states' rights issue,’ said Rep. Margaret Dayton, a 55-year-old Republican and mother of 12 who has led the rebellion to make Utah the first state to opt out of No Child Left Behind.

“Mrs. Dayton's bill and another giving primacy to state education standards won unanimous House approval last week. . . . Bush administration officials have conducted round-the-clock negotiations in an attempt to prevent Utah from becoming the first state to ignore the school accountability law. . . . Eight other state legislatures -- in Colorado, Connecticut, Idaho, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Vermont and Virginia -- are considering challenges to No Child Left Behind.”

- Washington Times, 2/23/05

THE ERA OF BIG GOVERNMENT IS BACK

“The media is aflutter today about George Bush's ‘Hit List.’ This would be the president's proposal in his new budget for fiscal year 2006 to cut or eliminate 154 programs. You would expect the Democrats to be screaming bloody murder. However, the latest lawmakers to be squealing at the trough include Republicans. That's too bad. “Scaling back Medicaid? The Republican governors are jumping up and down. Ending vocational subsidies in Pennsylvania? A GOP member of the house will have none of it. Killing a $2 million program to teach people about the underground railroad? A Republican member of the Senate opposes it.“The Republican Party used to be the party of low taxes and limited government. No more. It is now the party of big government, and the record of the last several years bears this out. We are rapidly reaching a point that when it comes to domestic policy, there isn't much difference between either party.”

- Talk show host Neal Boortz, 2/23/05

GOLDWATER KNEW

“(Secret taper Doug) Wead's behavior doesn't surprise political activists in Arizona, where Mr. Wead won a GOP Congressional primary in 1992 for an open seat. But the former Assemblies of God minister ran into a buzz saw of opposition not just from moderate Republicans turned off by his social conservatism. Many conservatives resented the fact that he was running for Congress only 18 months after having moved into the state.

“...In the last days of his race for Congress, Mr. Wead's campaign was dealt a fatal blow when the late Barry Goldwater took the extraordinary step of endorsing his Democratic opponent Karan English. ‘He told friends that he just didn't trust the fellow,’ recalls Tom Patterson, a former president of the Goldwater Institute. If George W. Bush can be faulted for anything with regard to the tapes, it's that it took him over a decade to come to the same conclusion that Barry Goldwater did.”

- John Fund, Political Diary, 2/23/05

THIS IS YOUR BRAIN ON BEER

“A state prosecutor in Florida's island city of Key West was under arrest after he reportedly ran naked and drunk across a parking lot and hopped into the wrong car, a newspaper said yesterday. Albert Tasker of the local state prosecutor's office told police he had been drinking with friends and thought it would be funny to take off his clothes and run to a friend's car in the parking lot, according to the Florida Keys Citizen newspaper. But Mr. Tasker, 28, apparently got into the back seat of the wrong car, to the distress of the woman in the vehicle. The legitimate occupant screamed and called her boyfriend, who telephoned police.”

- American Scene, Washington Times, 2/23/05

SURVEY SAYS!

How would you best describe the nature of the Social Security system?

* A welfare program
* A government assistance program
* An insurance program
* An entitlement

Cast your vote by clicking the “Survey Says!” tab at www.citizenoutreach.com

YESTERDAY IN DC CONFIDNETIAL...

* “Money Quotes” from Chris Rock and Barry Bonds * Big Apple mayor misses the boat...again * Prez backs feds against state voters...again * High school entrepreneurs cash in on obesity scare * The real problem with sex ed course in public schools * ACLU turns blind eye to “illegal” aliens * Smoke nannies protest Hollywood in Washington

An annual subscription for Chuck Muth’s daily DC Confidential e-newsletter is just $2.95 per month...or $25 per year. Subscribe online by going to: http://chuckmuth.com/onlinestore.htm . Or simply mail a check or money order (don’t forget to include your email address) to: Chuck Muth & Associates, 1315 Wilson Point Road, Middle River, MD, 21220.

FAMOUS LAST WORDS

“Your money has never been safe in the government’s hands, and it never will be. Governments spend money; it’s just their nature.”

- Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas)

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Published by:
Chuck Muth
1315 Wilson Point Road
Middle River, MD 21220
E-mail: chuck@chuckmuth.com

Wednesday

News & Views, 2/23/05

SURVEY SAYS!

Interesting result from last week’s online question: 57 percent of you said that “government assistance” programs such as Social Security and prescription drugs should NOT be “means tested,” that is, reserved only for lower-income folks who are not self-sufficient on their own. And based upon some of the email traffic I received, the result has more to do with Social Security than prescription drugs. So let’s take this another step in this week’s question...

How would you best describe the nature of the Social Security system?

* A welfare program
* A government assistance program
* An insurance program
* An entitlement
* Something else

Cast your vote by clicking the “Survey Says!” tab at www.citizenoutreach.com

FRENCH SPINE?

“In case you missed this, Le Grande Weasel Jacques Chirac joined George Bush yesterday in warning Syria that the time has come for Syria to remove its troops from Lebanon. Did Bush slip something in Chirac's wine? Or is it just possible that Chirac is growing a spine. How convenient for him. Now he won't have to drag himself across the floor like a slug. Maybe, just maybe, we're seeing a grudging admission here that U.S. actions in deposing Saddam Hussein and bringing free elections to Afghanistan and Iraq have actually contributed to the cause of peace.”

- Talk show host Neal Boortz

FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF “DUH”

Rep. Loretta Sanchez, California Democrat: “Unfortunately, as I said, this committee has had a hard time assessing where we really stand with the Iraqi army as an effective fighting force. Over the past year, we've received incredibly widely fluctuating estimates of that. And I think you have a real credibility problem on this issue.”

Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld: “Fluctuations of what?”

Sanchez: “The fluctuations of--the numbers that you bandy around about how many troops we really have out there that are Iraqi police, et cetera, et cetera. . . .”

Rumsfeld: “Now, you say we bandy around numbers. They're not my numbers. I don't invent them. They come from Gen. Petraeus. . . .”

Sanchez: “I have Petraeus's numbers. They're different than your numbers, by the way.”

Rumsfeld: “Well, what's the date? They aren't different because these came from Petraeus. He may have two sets of numbers, but they are not different if the date's the same. The date on my paper here is Feb. 14. What's yours?”

Sanchez: “December 20.”

Rumsfeld: “Not surprising there's a difference.”

- Tip o’ the Hat to James Taranto’s Best of the Web for bringing this exchange from last week to our attention

HEEEEEERE’S HILLARY!

“It's early yet, but at this point we'd say the most likely next president of the United States is Hillary Clinton. We're not saying the odds of a Clinton presidency are higher than 50%, just that they're higher than for any other individual. In part this reflects the weakness of the Democratic Party. Whereas the GOP has a surfeit of plausible candidates, Hillary stands tall because her party is almost entirely populated by vertically challenged diminutive-Americans. She's charismatic when compared with Nancy Reid and Harry Pelosi. She's charming when compared with Barbara Boxer and Howard Dean. And her views are sensible, moderate and patriotic when compared with the cynical defeatism of John Kerry and the borderline anti-Americanism of Ted Kennedy.”

- James Taranto, Best of the Web, 2/22/05

FONG ‘O8

“Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich appeared at the Conservative Political Action conference in Washington on Saturday and by the time he left there was little doubt among the 4,000 attendees that he was running for president in 2008. Mr. Gingrich pushed just about every conservative hot button in a hard-charging 25-minute speech. He called for changing U.S. law so illegal aliens can be deported within 72 hours of their arrest, with the courts being prohibited from reviewing such deportations. . . . Afterwards, audience members were convinced they had seen an early version of Mr. Gingrich's presidential stump speech. . . . Some people are ready to sign up for a Newt in '08 campaign. ‘I'm there with him,’ says Vern McCarthy, a Republican national committeeman from Illinois.”

- John Fund, Political Diary, 2/22/05

ALL THE “RIGHT” MOVES

Rep. Roscoe Bartlett (R-MD) has reintroduced legislation (H.R. 43) to restore separate recognition of George Washington's and Abraham Lincoln's birthdays--rather than a joint Presidents’ Day. For more information go to:http://johnshadegg.house.gov/rsc/word/Bartlett--GW.pdf

Rep. Scott Garrett (R-NJ) introduced the Financial Customer Identification Verification Improvement Act (H.R. 815), which would prohibit the use of identification cards issued by foreign governments, including matricula consular cards, for purposes of verifying the identity of a person who wants to open an account at a U.S. financial institution. Click here to read more:
http://johnshadegg.house.gov/rsc/word/Garrett--MatricularConsular.doc

- Republican Study Committee Update, 2/22/05

VOTERS: TAKE THIS TAX HIKE AND SHOVE IT

“From Erie County, New York, home to the city of Buffalo, comes a useful lesson in what can happen when local governments get caught in a spiral of ever-higher spending and taxes. Voters finally said, ‘enough!’ last week and demanded that the legislature balance the $1 billion county budget by cutting spending rather than raising taxes one more time. . . . Pro-tax legislators -- led by Republican County Executive Joel Giambra -- issued dire warnings about cuts in services should the tax increase not pass. But even the threat of reductions in snow-plowing -- no minor matter in February in Buffalo -- wasn't enough to persuade fed-up voters.”

- “Review & Outlook,” Wall Street Journal, 2/22/05

DISPATCHES FROM THE FRONT LINES

I don’t think there’s a more interesting, if not important, issue facing the country today than that of illegal (and legal, for that matter) immigration - especially considering the fact that there is SUCH a huge gulf of opinion on the issue between the GOP “establishment” inside the beltway and the grassroots voters in the heartland.

Should illegal immigrants get government issued drivers licenses and taxpayer subsidized college educations? Rep. Tom Tancredo, Colorado Republican, doesn’t think so...and he doesn’t care who knows it. Not only is Rep. Tancredo an outspoken and active critic of the present situation, he doesn’t tuck his tail between his legs and head for the hills whenever the left (or even the White House) says “boo,” unlike all too many of his colleagues.

If illegal immigration is an issue of interest to you, then consider getting news on this issue directly from the man in Congress who is leading the charge for more rational, common sense policies. Sign up for his FREE email updates by going to: http://www.tancredo.org/newsletter/newsletter_signup_200501.html

YESTERDAY IN DC CONFIDNETIAL...

* Hunter S. Thompson’s excellent example for liberals * Dr. Diva pitches a fit * The shocking number of government programs deemed “effective” - by a government organization * A stark double standard on the immigration front in Nebraska * Lesbian told to pay up her child support * Religious right group chickens out of debate with gay Republican * The “real” stories revealed by Doug Wead’s secret tapes

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FAMOUS LAST WORDS

"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it, misdiagnosing it, and then misapplying the wrong remedies."

- Groucho Marx

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Published by:
Chuck Muth
1315 Wilson Point Road
Middle River, MD 21220
E-mail: chuck@chuckmuth.com

Tuesday

News & Views, 2/22/05

BRUSHFIRE ALERT I

AARP is using its members’ money to run full-page ads all across the country today maintaining the screwed up Socialism Security system “is not in need of radical overhaul” and that allowing you to VOLUNTARILY put some of your OWN money into a retirement program of YOUR choice is an “extreme measure.”

In the ad, the far-left seniors’ group provides a TOLL-FREE phone number for folks to use to contact their congress-critter on the Social Security issue. So why not take this opportunity to give your member of Congress a little kick in the pants and urge them not to be intimidated by AARP’s misleading liberal advertising campaign...on AARP’s dime!

The number to call is 1-800-307-8525.

BRUSHFIRE ALERT II

A New York City school teacher, Alex Kunhardt, oversaw a class project in which a bunch of his sixth-graders sent a slew of “demoralizing anti-Iraq-war letters” to a GI on his way from Korea to the war-torn area in the Middle East. According to stories in the New York Post, it appears the kids had been brain-washed by the teacher into penning their anti-Iraq diatribes. "It boggles my mind that children could think this stuff,” Pfc. Rob Jacobs says.

Yes. Mr. Kunhardt is a PUBLIC school teacher. Go figure. Anyway, here’s an excerpt from the original story which appeared in the Post yesterday…

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February 21, 2005 -- An American soldier overseas is fuming over letters he received from Brooklyn middle-school children accusing GIs of destroying mosques and killing civilians in Iraq.

Pfc. Rob Jacobs of New Jersey said he was initially ecstatic to get a package of letters from sixth-graders at JHS 51 in Park Slope last month at his base 10 miles from the North Korea border.

That changed when he opened the envelope and found missives strewn with politically charged rhetoric, vicious accusations and demoralizing predictions that only a handful of soldiers would leave the Iraq war alive.

"It's hard enough for soldiers to deal with being away from their families, they don't need to be getting letters like this," Jacobs, 20, said in a phone interview from his base at Camp Casey. "If they don't have anything nice to say, they might as well not say anything at all."

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If you’d like to leave a message for Mr. Kunhardt in his personal voice-mail box at William Alexander Middle School, call (718) 369-7603 and punch in extension 431.

NEWT HITS RAW NERVE, HOME RUN

“Newt Gingrich is demanding that the Bush administration get serious about stopping illegal immigration. The former House speaker wants the United States to completely seal off its border along Mexico and Canada, deport illegal aliens within 72 hours of their arrest and exclude U.S. courts from reviewing such deportations.
"…’It's a complete misreading of the 14th Amendment’ to the Constitution to think that illegal aliens are entitled to the same rights as U.S. citizens, he said on the closing day of the 32nd annual Conservative Political Action Conference.

“He hit all the right notes for activists at a conference where immigration proved to be the hottest issue - in speeches, panel discussions and hallway talk. Legal immigrants, he said, should ‘have to learn about American history to pass a citizenship test, and they should have to pass it in English.’”

- Washington Times, 2/21/05

NOTHING TO WRITE HOME ABOUT

“My concern is that this (President Bush’s proposed spending cuts) is really just small potatoes. I mean, you think of 150 programs in a budget that's going to cost $2.6 trillion and that funds thousands of programs every year, 150 really is just a sliver of a sliver."

- Stephen Slivinski of the Cato Institute, Washington Times, 2/21/05

HEY, BIG SPENDER

“In his first term, Mr. Bush enacted some of the most fiscally reckless budgets in a quarter-century. The budget grew twice as fast as under Bill Clinton. The first-term Bush administration rhetoric of Reaganite tight-fistedness never caught up with the reality of the fiscal meltdown in Washington. Bloated Bush budgets, only padded with more grease and fat by Congress, created spending growth unmatched by any president since Lyndon B. Johnson, and a soaring $400 billion deficit.

“...Of course, the Bush administration has been forced to fight the war on terrorism. But the higher funding for guns, has not corresponded with reduced spending on butter. That has meant debt-laden budgets that have confused voters about whether Republicans still believe in smaller government.”

- Stephen Moore of the Free Enterprise Fund

PULL THE PLUG ON PBS

“Last week PBS President Pat Mitchell lobbied Congress for more money, and Republicans on Capitol Hill floated ideas for keeping the increasingly irrelevant corporation alive. No one seems to be asking this simple question: In a world in which 85 percent of Americans pay for either cable or satellite television, and with educational videos available in shopping malls and Wal-Marts nationwide, what possible justification can there be for a publicly subsidized television network?

“Every excuse for forcing Americans to pay for a television network has been exhausted. Educational and arts programs are widely available elsewhere. C-SPAN does a better job of informing Americans about government than PBS ever dreamed of doing. PBS news shows are drowned out by a cacophony of competitors who deliver news as well or better. What's left? Reruns of British sitcoms? Simply put, PBS has no mission that cannot be realized either in the for-profit sector or by converting the network to a private non-profit foundation.”

- Manchester Union-Leader editorial

THE ALTERNATIVES

Limited-government conservatives have three party options. The primary one, of course, is the GOP. The other two are the Libertarian Party and the Constitution Party.

A number of you have written asking where you can get more information on the Libertarian Party platform in light of my speech to their convention in California last weekend. You can find a their positions on a full range of issues by going to: http://lp.org/issues/

Now, if you prefer your limited government mixed with a healthy dose of religion, you might want to check out the Constitution Party platform by going to: http://www.constitutionparty.com/party_platform.php

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Published by:
Chuck Muth
1315 Wilson Point Road
Middle River, MD 21220
E-mail: chuck@chuckmuth.com