Easter End Of Day Report 04 10 09

Friday, April 10, 2009

To: Friends & Supporters

From: Gary Bauer

As we approach the Easter holiday, it is a good time to reflect on exactly what it is that we Christians are celebrating.

Today, on Good Friday, we think about the Cross and the sacrifice paid for our sins; the amazing love that took our place; and the grace we have been given. That kind of sacrifice is almost impossible to imagine. The suffering that took place there, voluntarily for us, is beyond the comprehension of a culture that says “Live for today and for yourself.” At a time when superficial, selfish and exploitative relationships have become the norm for so many people — as evidenced by all-time-high rates of divorce, domestic abuse, depression and suicide — we would do well to reflect more often on God’s grace for us.

We see a small glimpse of that type of sacrificial love every day in the service of our courageous men and women in uniform, who sacrifice their todays for our tomorrows. We see it in the firefighters and policemen who are trained to risk their lives to save strangers. Through their deeds we see that life truly is precious and worthy of protection, each person made in the image of our Creator.

As Christians we believe that Jesus’ death destroyed the barriers between man and God. We believe that He died so that we may be brought close enough to Him to choose Him. Others, however, follow a god who demands that they seek their own death and the deaths of others so that they may receive salvation. What a contrast!

On Easter morning, we do not gather to remember a martyr. We come together to worship the risen Son of God. With Christ’s resurrection, Christians have confidence in a caring Creator, rather than in the chaos of the cosmos. We have confidence in a glorious future, rather than in the finality of the grave. It is this confidence that sustains us in times of trial and tribulation. Why do we have such confidence? Because “It is finished.” Christ’s atoning work on the Cross is done, and we are saved!

Ultimately, it is not the birth of a man born into this world that we celebrate; rather, it is His death and resurrection as the living Son of God. If Christ had not risen from the grave and ascended into Heaven, he would have been forgotten as a common criminal whose birthday would have no significance.

Thank God for the Cross and the empty tomb! Keep the faith. Carol and I and everyone at American Values send our love to you and yours.


It was my intention to bring you only the “Good News” today, but I felt compelled to comment on the news out of Great Britain as well. British intelligence agencies disrupted an Al Qaeda plot and arrested 12 Pakistanis on student visas for allegedly planning an “Easter spectacular” – multiple bombings at shopping centers throughout Manchester, England. I know President Obama has said that we are not at war with Islam, but I wonder if he realizes that many Islamofascists apparently disagree


End Of Day Report 04 07 09

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

To: Friends & Supporters

From: Gary L. Bauer

The White House Wizard

Some claim he is a better orator than Ronald Reagan. Others compare him to “The Great Emancipator,” Abraham Lincoln. His most committed followers talk of him in worshipful terms – as a political messiah. They are all wrong. After carefully reviewing President Obama’s speeches to adoring audiences abroad in recent days, where he announced his goal of a world with no nuclear weapons, I finally realized where I had seen this man before. His first gig was in that great movie with Judy Garland. He is the “Wizard of Oz”!

Look behind the curtain – he pulls ropes, manufactures greats sounds, makes lights flash and presto, tyrants tremble, enemies surrender and war disappears. But as we learned in the movie, the booming voice behind the curtain that so frightened Dorothy was an illusion – it came from a little man who counted on fear to rule his subjects in Oz. He had no power at all, only “smoke and mirrors.”

While our president announced his commitment to a nuclear-free world, the maniac running North Korea tested a long-range missile, which we can safely assume won’t be carrying warheads filled with confetti. Our response was to draft a really strong resolution, which the cowards at the United Nations promptly rejected.

In underground bunkers all over Iran, the scientists serving the mullahs continued to work furiously to obtain the nuclear weapons which are to be used in service of Allah. Our response is to pressure Israel to create a Palestinian state – while doing nothing serious about stopping the tyrants in Tehran from developing their “Islamic bomb.”

The president thinks the enemy is a particular type of weapon. But nuclear weapons ended World War II and preserved a rough peace throughout the Cold War. The enemy is in Tehran and Damascus, and has allies who are in Venezuela and North Korea. They have enablers in Moscow and Beijing. All of them see the little man behind the curtain who loves to apologize for his country but hasn’t yet figured out that the only thing in 2009 that prevents the world from sinking into tyranny and slavery is the strength and will of America.

What Do The People Think?

In the course of his European tour, President Obama has made a lot of statements related to America, our history and our national security. Yesterday, I reported that President Obama told an audience of Turkish Muslims that Americans don’t consider our country to be a Christian nation. But a recent poll by Newsweek found that at least 62% of Americans do think of the United States as a Christian nation. Is President Obama speaking for only 38% of the nation when talks overseas?

President Obama talks about a nuclear-free world, and when rogue dictators fire off missiles, he talks some more. According to a new Rasmussen poll, “Fifty-seven percent (57%) of U.S. voters nationwide favor a military response to eliminate North Korea’s missile launching capability. …just 15% of voters oppose a military response while 28% are not sure.” The support for tough action is bi-partisan: 66% of Republicans, 52% of Democrats and 54% of Independents.

He also spent much of his time apologizing for America. Speaking in France, President Obama said that there had been “times when America has shown arrogance and been dismissive, even derisive.” According to another Rasmussen poll, only 37% of American voters agreed with that statement. When asked if it would be better for the world if Europe became more like America, 54% said “Yes,” while just 22% said the world would be better off if America became like Europe. Is President Obama speaking for the 22% of Americans who want us to be more like Europe?

Obama’s Pro-Abortion Extremism

While President Obama likes to talk about “reducing the need for abortion,” his administration is taking steps to implement one of the most extreme proposals imaginable – repealing conscience protections for medical professionals. Make no mistake about the outcome of this action: religious hospitals, doctors and nurses will be forced to perform abortions or other procedures that violate their values.

This issue clearly exposes the pro-abortion extremism of Barack Obama and the Left. A woman’s “right of conscience” is protected to the extent that she can decide whether or not her unborn baby lives or dies. Now the pro-abortion Left wants to take away the right of conscience from doctors and nurses who want no part in the destruction of innocent human life. That is not “pro-choice” – it is pro-abortion.

TAKE ACTION: As required by law, the administration is accepting public comments before it takes further action on this outrageous proposal. The comment period ends on April 9th. Please respectfully share your thoughts with the Department of Health and Human Services by visiting http://www.regulations.gov or by sending an E-mail to proposedrescission@hhs.gov.

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Defend Free Enterprise Report 04 03 09

Friday, April 3, 2009

To: Friends Of Free Enterprise

From: Gary L. Bauer

(This is the second of our weekly Defend Free Enterprise Reports. I hope you will share them with like-minded friends and business associates. Please encourage them to sign up at http://www.defendfreeenterprise.org or they can click the link at the end of this report.)

Congress Passes Obama’s Budget

The House and Senate essentially rubberstamped President Obama’s budget –a multi-year, multi-trillion dollar blueprint of deficits and debt as far as the eye can see. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office estimated that Barack Obama’s budget would add nearly ten trillion dollars to the national debt – doubling the debt in five years and tripling it ten! The Associated Press reported, “President Barack Obama’s budget would produce … more than four times the deficits of Republican George W. Bush’s presidency.” In addition, it contains hundreds of billions of dollars in tax hikes and lays the foundation for nationalized health care.

The vote in the House of Representatives was 233-to-196. Every “Yes” vote in favor of tripling the national debt came from a Democrat. Not one House Republican voted for this budget, and 20 Democrats joined the Republicans in voting “No.” The vote in the Senate was 55-to-43. Every “Yes” vote in favor of tripling the national debt came from a Democrat. Every Senate Republican and two Democrats (Evan Bayh of Indiana and Ben Nelson of Nebraska) voted “No.” That means that the only thing “bi-partisan” about this budget was the opposition to it!

Here a few noteworthy items.

* Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE) successfully passed an amendment to block special “reconciliation” rules in the budget process from applying to the administration’s planned carbon “cap and trade” scheme, which I refer to as “cap and tax.” (It’s a massive new tax on energy that may cost every American business and family thousands of dollars a year! Administration officials have told Senate staff that they believe it could tax $2 trillion out of the economy.) What the Johanns amendment means is that the “cap and tax” scheme can be filibustered in the Senate at a later date. Every Senate Republican supported the Johanns amendment, as did 26 Democrats.

* Senators were even more emphatic in their rejection (94-to-3) of President Obama’s idea to limit tax deductions for charitable contributions from successful business owners and families.

* Here’s an additional point to consider. The budget is an important indicator of Washington’s principles and intent, but it is mainly a non-binding outline of what the White House and Congress hopes to do in the years ahead. (And it’s clear there are a lot of big spenders and tax hikers in Congress today!) The real heavy lifting will come later when the White House and congressional leaders propose specific bills and legislation to enact their agenda. We will keep you posted and alert you when these critical issues come up for a vote.

Bad Precedents

When Obama suggested in early February that he wanted to limit executive compensation at companies receiving bailout money, I was worried that it wouldn’t be long before liberals took his idea and ran wild with it. Within 24 hours, Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) was talking about extending compensation restrictions to all financial institutions and possibly even to all U.S. companies.

This week the House of Representatives took the first step in that direction by passing H.R. 1664, the “Pay for Performance Act,” by a vote of 247-to-171. “Pay for Performance” sounds innocent enough, but it establishes a very insidious precedent.

H.R. 1664 allows the Secretary of the Treasury and key congressional chairmen (namely Barney Frank and Chris Dodd) to determine whether compensation is “unreasonable or excessive” for all executives and employees at any financial institution that has received TARP funds. Do we really want Tim Geithner, Barney Frank and Chris Dodd deciding how much to pay the secretary at the front desk or the clerk in the mail room? And what happens to these companies when large numbers of employees decide they don’t like Barney Frank’s evaluation of their performance? Thanks to Big Government, these companies will be unable to retain a competent workforce and may become dependent on the government’s largess, just like welfare.

But this is what happens when liberal politicians think they know better than the business owners who run their own companies. This is what happens when Big Government sticks its big nose in the free market. And if we establish the principle that taxpayer subsidizes allow the government to set salaries, what about asset depreciation or other business-friendly tax breaks? Aren’t those all forms of government subsidy?

“Capitalism Will Be Different”

A few weeks ago, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said on the Charlie Rose Show, “I think capitalism will be different.” This week, President Obama fired the head of General Motors and the government is now seeking to restructure its board of directors. Yes, capitalism has changed alright. I’m still waiting to hear that President Obama is also sending a pink slip to the president of the United Auto Workers union, but I won’t hold my breath.

Meanwhile, Geithner renewed the government’s call this week for even more power over American industry. During testimony in the House of Representatives in defense of his institutional takeover plan, Rep. Donald Manzullo (R-IL) challenged Geithner, asking, “Do you realize how radical your proposal is?” Geithner responed, “It’s not radical. . .” But Manzullo shot back, “You’re talking about seizing private businesses and you don’t consider that radical?”

Today’s Washington Post reports that while Geithner served as head of the New York Federal Reserve Bank working “to solve narrow mechanical issues in the derivatives market, [Geithner] missed clear signs of a catastrophe in the making. …Although Geithner repeatedly raised concerns … he and the Federal Reserve system did not act with enough force to blunt the troubles that ensued.” Geithner admits, “We’re having a major financial crisis in part because of failures of supervision.”

Talk about rewarding failure! I’ve often said that the best way to get promoted in government is to mess up big. So, right under Geithner’s nose, major New York banks and institutions blew up, and this guy gets promoted and is now asking for even more power. This is the same guy who can’t even handle Turbo Tax! But don’t think for a second that if you make a mistake on your taxes that you will qualify for a “Geithner tax amnesty.”

And here’s an example of how Big Government is working to punish success. East Bridgewater Savings Bank has no delinquent loans and no foreclosures. It has $135 million in assets and $84 million in deposits. And even in this atmosphere it has turned a profit. Yet, the FDIC has issued the bank a critical rating under the Community Reinvestment Act. Why? Because, according to our government, East Bridgewater Savings Bank is not being risky enough! You can read the story here.

Thoughts On The G-20 Summit

I watched media coverage of the G-20 summit with great interest. While I was concerned about what policies might come out of the London gathering, I was equally concerned about the politics – especially the class warfare rhetoric. Did you see the mobs? The media tried to pass them off as just normal folks angry about the economy. It was in fact the far Left – anti-war groups, Muslim activists, anarchists, radical socialists. There was even a banner that read “Abolish Money!” Now that’s a strategy.

Unfortunately, we are seeing more and more of this here in America. Taxpayer-funded groups like ACORN are working hand-in-hand with labor unions to stage protests, like staging sit-ins in banks, “liberating” homes from foreclosure, and driving buses in front of the homes of AIG executives. But their efforts are fanning the flames of envy, fueling hatred and fear. Many AIG executives and employees have received death threats and other disgusting messages. Some have taken to hiring private security guards to protect their homes and families.

In fact, there is a shocking report today in Politico about a recent White House meeting between bank CEOs and the president about compensation. As the executives were explaining the need to pay their best and brightest well, President Obama shut down the discussion, telling them, “Be careful how you make those statements, gentlemen. The public isn’t buying that. My administration is the only thing between you and the pitchforks.”

Perhaps Obama’s comments were just a polite PR suggestion. But given Obama’s well-known connection to ACORN, some might see his comment as a warning about as subtle as a dead fish on your door step. By the way, this meeting occurred on the same day that GM’s Rick Wagoner was in Washington meeting with officials at the Treasury Department, where he told to “step aside.” At least the banking executives got out of town with their jobs.

The media and liberal politicians continue to promote the myth that “salvation” will come from Big Government. We know that America will only come through this because of you! The only way we get out of this mess is if investors and business owners and employees are rewarded for their hard work and willingness to take risks.

In the days and weeks ahead, we will be fighting hard to defend free enterprise and promote sound policies that will grow the economy, not the government.

End Of Day Report 03 30 09

Monday, March 30, 2009

To: Friends & Supporters

From: Gary Bauer

GM: Government Mafia

It’s been said that dealing with Big Government is like dealing with the mafia – both operate by their own rules and there’s a high price to pay for dealing with either. In recent days, we witnessed the government arbitrarily change rules and impose confiscatory taxes on contracts it had previously approved. If you’re a business owner or a corporate CEO desperately trying to manage a struggling industry, we got another example of the cost of doing business if you turn to the Feds for help.

General Motors CEO Richard Wagoner was in Washington Friday to explain his plan to turn the company around after receiving billions of dollars in federal loans. At the meeting, he was asked to “step aside.” Now, after risking nearly $20 billion in taxpayer money, and with both Chrysler and GM asking for $20 billion more, the government is suggesting that bankruptcy may be the end result after all.

One could certainly make the argument that Wagoner should be fired. But is that really the government’s decision? Anyone who thinks the government can do a better job should consider the government’s track record with public education or the Post Office or the IRS. Regardless, GM’s CEO has been forced out, but what about the unions – what concessions are they making now?

And what else is government doing to help the struggling auto industry? Not much. In fact, it’s adding to the burden! The Transportation Department just announced a new increase in fuel efficiency standards, meaning that car manufacturers are going to have to revamp their assembly lines and retool factories in the middle of an economic downturn. The administration’s proposed carbon “cap and trade” scheme would be devastating to Detroit. In addition, liberal bureaucrats in California want to tell you what color car you can drive. Believe it or not, in order to save the planet from global warming, the California legislature may ban black paint on cars because the black paint absorbs heat and people use their air conditioners “too much” to cool down their cars.

By the way, the government mafia isn’t just muscling in on businesses – it’s doing the same thing to states. South Carolina’s conservative Governor Mark Sanford has repeatedly told Washington that he does not want the government’s “stimulus” money because of the onerous conditions and demands that come with it. Undeterred, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan told USA Today, “Let me be clear. We’re going to take care of the children of South Carolina.” Shouldn’t that be left to the parents and people of South Carolina, rather than Washington bureaucrats who think they know better?

Muslim Affirmative Action?

Over the weekend, news broke that various “community groups” are urging the Obama Administration to hire more Muslims to key positions in the government. The Los Angeles Times reports that J. Saleh Williams, program coordinator for the Congressional Muslim Staffers Association, “sifted through more than 300 names” and forwarded a book of 45 resumes to the White House. Evidently, the White House is eager for the vetting help. The effort was “bumped up two weeks ahead of schedule because White House officials heard about the venture.”

The Times quotes Abdul Malik Mujahid of the Muslim Democrats, saying “Muslims are not looking for handouts. We’re just looking for equal opportunity and inclusiveness.” Not to mention a little influence. A spokesman for the Council on American Islamic Relations didn’t mince words, saying, “We’re hoping that once [Attorney General] Eric Holder puts the [Justice] department in order and places people in different positions, we can reestablish what were very positive relations [with the FBI] in our 15-year history.” You may recall that the FBI terminated its “very positive relations” with CAIR after it was declared an unindicted co-conspirator in the government’s case against the Holy Land Foundation.

I remember the hyperventilating in Washington when it was learned that the Bush Administration made an effort to hire graduates of Regent University Law School, which was founded by Pat Robertson. Leftwing groups warned that America was on the verge of a theocracy and that the “separation of church and state” was under assault. I’m not hearing much concern about the “separation of church and state” today from those groups.

Lights Out!

I don’t know if you participated in Earth Hour this weekend, but I couldn’t help being struck by the irony as I read a news report about the event this morning. According to the Associated Press, “Time zone by time zone, nearly 4,000 cities and towns in 88 countries joined the event sponsored by the World Wildlife Fund to dim nonessential lights from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.”

Throughout recorded history, mankind has struggled to harness natural resources and human ingenuity to better our lives. From the discovery of fire to electricity, we have sought to conquer darkness. Now, so-called “progressives” are eager to turn out the lights and plunge society back into another Dark Age by capping emissions from fossil fuels and even putting a cap on human beings. Last week I reported the comments of a leading environmental guru in Great Britain who declared, “Population growth, plus economic growth, is putting the world under terrible pressure.” His solution is to reduce England’s population by 30 million people.

Those of us who believe in common sense, and who don’t see our fellow man as some sort of virus infecting the planet that must be eradicated, need to speak up. We must help our politicians “feel the heat and see the light” before the Left paralyzes our economy with radical environmental policies.

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