Free Markets, Free People

scare tactics


Ratcheting up the scare tactics – Obama says no guarantee Social Security checks will go out Aug. 3

So typical of how politicians tend to treat the serious matters of policy when they want to literally scare up support:

President Obama on Tuesday said he cannot guarantee that retirees will receive their Social Security checks August 3 if Democrats and Republicans in Washington do not reach an agreement on reducing the deficit in the coming weeks.

"I cannot guarantee that those checks go out on August 3rd if we haven’t resolved this issue. Because there may simply not be the money in the coffers to do it," Mr. Obama said in an interview with CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley, according to excerpts released by CBS News.

The Obama administration and many economists have warned of economic catastrophe if the United States does not raise the amount it is legally allowed to borrow by August 2.

If nothing else this should forever kill the nonsense about the “Social Security lockbox”.

This is akin to what you always hear when you talk budget cuts or the like.  It’s is always about cutting police, fire and education services first – not the bureaucrat in some office doing redundant work.  You can’t scare people onto your side without such tactics, apparently.

But American’s aren’t at all convinced that the debt ceiling should be raised according to Gallup.  That means it’s time to scare the old folks again.

Nice.

MJW ADDS: Just to throw some graphic wood on this fire, James Pethokoukis put together a handy little chart to demonstrate what a huge lie Obama is telling, and the Dems and the media are trying to sell:

August revenue versus expenditures

Note that all interest, Social Security, Medicare and defense payments can easily be made, and we are not in manner, shape or form in danger of default.

An excellent breakdown of exactly what budgetary issues we are facing can be found here [HT: Insty].

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO


Lou Dobbs and I actually agree on something

And that is that the Southern Poverty Law Center is cynically paranoid and into fear mongering. “Cynically” because its all about donations – no fear, no paranoia, no money.

Strangely silent during the “hate Bush” years, it has suddenly again found its voice now that a left of center government is in office and it can serve up its “right rage” paranoia.  However the SPLC never seems able to find any left wing hate (well except for a left leaning radio station that allowed some anti-semetic ranting apparently). Don’t believe me? Visit their website and type in “left wing hate”. Prepare to be inundated with instances of alleged right wing hate.  Even the recent crash of an airplane into a Texas IRS office by a guy who left a letter blaming Bush is spun into a typically right-wing attack.

And check it out when they actually do go after a minority group as a ‘hate group’. They rationalize their doing so by saying if we go after white hate groups “we cannot be in the business of explaining away the black ones.”   But they sure try:

Although the Southern Poverty Law Center recognizes that much black racism in America is, at least in part, a response to centuries of white racism, it believes racism must be exposed in all its forms.

But the question is are they left wing or right wing? In the world of the SPLC, every hate group is right-wing or unspecified.

Blaming Glen Beck, Michelle Bachman, Lou Dobbs and Sarah Palin for the rise is “right rage”, the SPLC claims:

“Another Oklahoma City is very much a possibility.”

Really? Like the rage of the Tea Parties, which DC police describe as one of the best behaved “protest” crowds ever?

Nope – it’s all about the usual nonsense with the “Patriot right”:

The growth of Patriot groups comes at a time when the number of racist hate groups stayed at record levels – rising from 926 in 2008 to 932 in 2009, according to the report. The increase caps a decade in which the number of hate groups surged by 55 percent. The expansion would have been much greater in 2009 if not for the demise of the American National Socialist Workers Party, a key neo-Nazi network whose founder was arrested in October 2008.

There also has been a surge in “nativist extremist” groups – vigilante organizations that go beyond advocating strict immigration policy and actually confront or harass suspected immigrants. These groups grew from 173 groups in 2008 to 309 in 2009, a rise of nearly 80 percent.

These three strands of the radical right – the hate groups, the nativist extremist groups, and the Patriot organizations – are the most volatile elements on the American political landscape. Taken together, their numbers increased by more than 40 percent, rising from 1,248 groups in 2008 to 1,753 last year.

Of course nowhere in this “report” will you find out the size of these new groups. Hundreds? Thousands? Or three nutballs who’ve splintered off from one of the other groups and put up a website? No telling. But do note, it’s all about the number of “groups”, not about the number of actual people involved in the “Patriot groups”. My guess is that would work toward badly diluting the paranoia the SPLC is trying to build.

Oh, and don’t forget the huge increase in violence:

There are already signs of radical right violence reminiscent of the 1990s. Right-wing extremists have murdered six law enforcement officers since Obama’s inauguration. Racist skinheads and others have been arrested in alleged plots to assassinate the president. Most recently, as recounted in the new issue of the Intelligence Report, a number of individuals with antigovernment, survivalist or racist views have been arrested in a series of bomb cases.

Of course the Ft. Hood and Little Rock Recruiting station killings were worse than any of that. There’s the Ft. Dix bomb plot and the Ft. Jackson 5 – none of them apparently worth mentioning. Nope – it’s all about the “radical right violence reminiscent of the 1990s” when it was Rush Limbaugh that was the cause.

And, let’s face it – as usual, these press releases come out from the SPLC just about the time it is pimping a new quarterly report, this one entitled “Right Rage”. It’s revenue generation time. What better way to scare up money than by scaring donors into opening their wallets.

~McQ

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