Don’t Call Me Madam

California is broke — flat broke. Two of the reasons for the state’s desperate financial crisis are seeking yet another chance to completely wreck the state’s economy.

Jerry Brown, the aging boy-wonder of California politics, wants another chance to mess around with taxpayer money, much of which is seeking refuge in China, that new haven of fiscal freedom for all not currently present in that nation’s concentration camps.

Then there’s Barbara Boxer, who lectured a combat veteran and top general on the niceties of discourse between a chairwoman and witness by instructing him to cease calling her Ma’am because she had labored mightily to reach her exalted state as a U.S. Senator. Now she wants another shot at being one for another six years.

Her foray into supporting “Cap and Trade” has garnered derision from all who see through the “global warming” hoax, and her performance on the floor of the Senate was a miserable failure. As documented by Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., and reported by Wes Vernon in Wednesday on the Web (www.pvbr.com), her Cap and Trade bill “would have resulted in 1) higher gas prices at the pump, 2) the largest tax increase in history, 3) the biggest pork bill ever, 4) the loss of up to 4 million jobs by 2030, 5) a huge bureaucratic intrusion into your life, and 6) the biggest reorganization of the American economy since the 1930s.”

And Madam Boxer wants the voters of California to allow her to continue for six more years her attempts to wreck this nation’s economy by fighting a non-existent peril – “global warming” — and compelling Americans to pay homage and blind obedience to the wisdom of the bloated federal government, which doesn’t know the difference between hot and cold.

California has a stunning budget deficit of $19 billion, $6.2 billion of which is earmarked for retiree pension and benefit payments. That amount is due to nearly triple in size over the next 10 years as the state’s swollen pension grows higher and higher. Frighteningly, as The Wall Street Journal reports, “California’s unfunded pension liability is scored at more than $120 billion, with some estimates rising to $500 billion.”

The Journal credits this mess to California’s incredibly generous benefits, “low employee and employer contributions,” and the use of “inflated investment-return assumptions used to hide pension costs.”

In consequence, as investment returns shrink, California has to compensate for the deficits by cutting appropriations for higher education, parks and other services.

As the Journal notes, while Brown’s proposals would prevent state employees from accumulating higher pensions by “racking up overtime and bonuses to inflate their final year’s compensation,” among other measures, much of this has already been arranged by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Writes the Journal, “It’s unlikely Mr. Brown’s reforms would save much more.”

Brown was once dubbed “Governor Moonbeam” by the late Chicago columnist Mike Royko, who called the state “the world’s largest outdoor mental asylum.”

After claiming, “The gap between rich and poor also keeps increasing because of computers, because of the declining power of unions and union membership, because of technology that replaces people in unskilled and semiskilled jobs, because of workers in foreign countries merged into the employment base of American companies, and because of the use of part-time workers putting people at a disadvantage and lowering their benefits,” Brown offered his solution.

“The focus ought to be on making low-income work pay more. And where there aren’t those jobs, let the government step in like they did in WPA [Works Progress Administration], community service … And all the rest of it.”

In other words, leave it up to Big Brother.

They tried that in Russia and Germany. Look where it got them.

©2010 Mike Reagan. Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate. For info contact Cari Dawson Bartley. E-mail Cari@cagle.com, (800) 696-7561.

Why Did I Bother?

I’m thinking of putting my family on food stamps because Nancy Pelosi, in her wisdom, has assured us that doing so will help the economy and as a concerned American I want to do my part.

I wish I’d been aware of this years ago. I could have stopped working and lived on the dole and I would have avoided years of a lot of just-plain drudgery.

Just think, back in those lean years when I was driving back and forth every day between Los Angeles and San Diego to broadcast to the only two stations carrying my radio show for what amounted to a small pittance — baseball caps.

It got so onerous I begged my mother, Jane Wyman, for help. She said, “Shut up and keep driving.” So that’s what I did. Now I wonder why. I could have gotten on the welfare gravy train years ago and lived a life of ease.

An old board game known as known as “Public Assistance — Why Bother Working for a Living?” was banned back in the ‘80s, I guess for being politically incorrect. Anyway, it’s now been revived. It acts as a guide for getting on the dole, for boarding the welfare gravy train.

It’s been rechristened “Obozo’s America: Why Bother Working For A Living?”

According to its makers it features 50 Welfare Benefit Cards and 50 Working Person’s Cards, all “based on the preposterous notion that a Marxist clown, running on the vague and shaky platform of hope and change, could become President of The United States.” It doesn’t say whether or not there’s a Nancy Pelosi card.

It sounds like fun — something I can do to wile away all that free time I’ll have when I stop working.

According to its makers: “Get your initial $1,000 cash grant at the First of the Month, then maneuver along Obozo’s Welfare Promenade. Get cash for your out-of-wedlock children. Draw from a stack of Welfare Benefit Cards. Get extra cash from Saturday Night crimes: Gambling, Armed Robbery, Drugs, and Prostitution.”

Maybe Mrs. Pelosi might recommend providing a free copy of the game as another welfare benefit.

Seriously. There is a great danger here. What she’s talking about is right out of Karl Marx’s socialist playbook. Allegedly a devout Catholic who somehow manages to get around the Church’s stand on baby killing via legalized abortion, she has ignored the warnings of numerous popes about socialism.

Here, for example, is what Pope Leo XIII (1878-1903) had to say about socialism:

“…We speak of that sect of men who, under various and almost barbarous names, are called socialists, communists, or nihilists, and who, spread over all the world, and bound together by the closest ties in a wicked confederacy, no longer seek the shelter of secret meetings, but, openly and boldly marching forth in the light of day, strive to bring to a head what they have long been planning – the overthrow of all civil society whatsoever. Surely, these are they who, as the sacred Scriptures testify, ‘Defile the flesh, despise dominion and blaspheme majesty.’ (Jud. 8).” (Encyclical Quod ApostoliciMuneris, December 28, 1878, n. 1)

Here’s what the present Pope, Benedict XVI says:

“We do not need a State which regulates and controls everything”

“The State which would provide everything, absorbing everything into itself, would ultimately become a mere bureaucracy incapable of guaranteeing the very thing which the suffering person — every person — needs: namely, loving personal concern. We do not need a State which regulates and controls everything, but a State which, in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity, generously acknowledges and supports initiatives arising from the different social forces and combines spontaneity with closeness to those in need. … In the end, the claim that just social structures would make works of charity superfluous masks a materialist conception of man: the mistaken notion that man can live ‘by bread alone’ (Mt 4:4; cf. Dt 8:3) − a conviction that demeans man and ultimately disregards all that is specifically human.” (Encyclical Deus Caritas Est, December 25, 2005, n. 28)

On second thought, I guess I’ll just keep working and earning a living.

©2010 Mike Reagan. Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate. For info contact Cari Dawson Bartley. E-mail Cari@cagle.com, (800) 696-7561.

It Takes More Than Speechifying

Nobody questions Barack Obama’s talent as an effective orator — it’s more a question of what he says than how he says it.

With or without those omnipresent teleprompters, the president is failing to connect to the majority of his fellow Americans, mainly because they emphatically disagree with most of the snake-oil policies he’s trying to sell them.

It is now becoming apparent that the public is anything but happy with Obamacare, which they are beginning to understand inserts the government smack in the middle between themselves, their doctors and institutions that provide medical care for the American people.

That’s the same meddlesome government that loses tons of money delivering the mail and fails to make the trains run on time — a feat even Benito Mussolini, one of the most inefficient dictators in all history, was anecdotally able to accomplish.

Our new system of socialized medicine, nowhere near fully implemented, is already bearing the bitter fruit of out-of-control costs, now planted firmly on the shoulders of the American people. And that’s only the beginning.

Of late, the president has begun to show his impatience with the American people who, in their ignorance, are failing to show their appreciation for his valiant attempts to bestow upon them the blessings of European-style Marxism, despite the fact that it has failed wherever tried.

Flitting from one backyard to another, democratically attired with open collar and shirt sleeves, he is preaching to his faithful supporters, carefully screened to keep the less-than-slavishly devoted from intruding on his folksy approach.

Even now, in his fervor to advance his peculiar Europeanized agenda, he pushes forward, fully aware that he his dooming his party to near-extinction in the Nov. 2 congressional election.

Some of the more-cynical of our cadre of political observers are suggesting that he is secretly overjoyed by the harbinger of doom hanging over his supporters in Congress, relishing the prospect of running against those villainous Republicans on Capitol Hill for obstructing his heroic and selfless efforts to improve the lot of his fellow Americans.

Harry Truman, allegedly a sure-loser in the 1948 presidential election, turned the tables around by creating an ogre — the GOP controlled “do-nothing” 80th Congress — which he insisted was standing in the way of his efforts to create that year’s Democratic Party vision of Heaven on Earth.

Mr. Obama sees himself poised to recreate the Truman surprise in 2012 by lambasting the current version of a do-nothing Congress, which he rightly surmises will be under GOP control in at least one of the houses of Congress.

He may be correct in that assumption but I very much doubt it. The bloom is off the Obama rose, except for those misguided Obama devotees who still see him as the 21st century’s messiah.

It’s really amazing when you think of it. This gifted orator who swept across the electoral landscape like an awesome tornado, leveling most opposition and creating a heavily Democratic controlled Congress just short of two years ago, is now on the verge of seeing his party shorn of control of Congress.

And nobody can legitimately suggest that it is anything but his fault. He has led his troops into a political Dunkirk without the prospect of deliverance. There’s no Churchill to rescue them. And as his party’s leader, he seems perfectly content with the disaster that looms ahead for Democrats.

All this is not to say that he relishes the prospect of a Democratic free-fall; simply that he is sufficiently cynical to appreciate the opportunities inherent therein.

It is the misfortune of the Democratic Party membership that they failed to recognize that their standard bearer was — and is — deeply immersed in a narcissism that allows him to believe he is their superior in all things political and they had better heed his words, delivered with or without a pair of teleprompters.

They will pay the price on November 2, and it will be a whopper.

©2010 Mike Reagan. Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate. For info contact Cari Dawson Bartley. E-mail Cari@cagle.com, (800) 696-7561.

Lights Out

It’s should be called the law of unintended consequences, and Congress should learn to abide by it, taking enough time to discover whether the road they choose to follow is smooth or filled with ruts.

Back in 2007, the Congress in their wisdom ruled that starting in the year 2012 the ordinary incandescent light bulbs we’ve been using for ages must be phased out and completely regulated away by 2014. They are to be replaced by so-called CFLs, those twisted fluorescent gizmos that if dropped become tiny mercury bombs.

Why do away with something we’ve been using, without problems, for just about forever? Well, because they allegedly contribute to a deadly hazard that exists only in their minds — nonexistent global warming.

Just think, every time you turn on a light you are helping to barbecue the planet, according to Mr. Gore and his fellow global-warming alarmists in Congress.

Shame on you!

Congress totally ignored the warnings that the allegedly wondrous CFLs they want to jam down our throats use high levels of mercury and when they break, as light bulbs tend to do when we drop them, they scatter mercury like shrapnel when a shell explodes.

The clean-up required to undo the damage cause by dropped CFLs is extensive and hazardous as well.

In addition, medical experts warn that when broken, the bulbs Congress favors can cause migraine headaches and even epilepsy attacks. Moreover they are unreliable in colder temperatures, failing to emit much heat, are hostile to such gimmicks as dimmer switches, and their lifespan is limited by being frequently turned on or off.

In addition, in this period of economic uncertainty and growing unemployment, the replacement of our usual bulbs has cost a lot of jobs.

General Electric, for example, has closed factories in Kentucky and Ohio, and has recently announced they are closing their major incandescent factory in Winchester, Va. — a factory that employed 200 of our fellow Americans and the last major incandescent manufacturing facility in the United States.

That’s good news for China and other countries that will take up the slack with CFL manufacture, but will also undoubtedly create a new form of bootlegging or, rather, bulblegging.

According to the Heritage Foundation, in an attempt to undo the damage Congress has done with this outlandish regulation, Reps. Joe Barton, R-Texas, Michael Burgess, R-Texas, and Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., have introduced the so-called “Better Use of Light Bulbs” (BULB) Act last week. It would repeal Subtitle B of Title III of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 — the phase-out of the incandescent bulb.

Said Rep. Blackburn: “Washington banned a perfectly good product and fired hard working Americans based on little more than their own whim and the silly notion that they know better than the American consumer. Now, hundreds more Americans are looking for work while assembly lines in China are churning out fluorescent bulbs for the U.S. market.”

Does anyone in Congress care about the plight of American workers, or are they so deeply embedded in the fantasies of Al Gore that they are willing to put American workers out of work?

Thank God for the oncoming Congressional elections. We’ll have an opportunity to put out the lights on Capitol Hill for a lot of these crazed ideologues.

©2010 Mike Reagan. Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate. For info contact Cari Dawson Bartley. E-mail Cari@cagle.com, (800) 696-7561.

Why Does Obama Hate Tax Cuts?

In his recent town-hall appearance, President Obama sought to pin the blame for the nation’s economic troubles on the so-called Bush tax cuts enacted in 2001 and 2003.

That’s not all that surprising, since the president appears to believe that the federal government is the sole and rightful owner of what you think is your money.

He says it isn’t your money. He is convinced that it’s his.

Thus you can expect him to oppose any measures that would allow you to hang onto the lion’s share of the money you earn or receive from investments.

The Bush tax cuts will die of inaction at the end of 2010 if they are not extended. Mr. Obama doesn’t want them extended. After all, the tax cuts were designed to allow you to keep a lot of the money you earn while limiting how much of your income the government can confiscate.

They cut taxes across the board for earned income, long-term capital gains and dividends. Among other changes, they expanded the child tax credit and put into effect a host of other tax code changes and adjustments, deductions, exemptions, and mitigated the so-called marriage penalty.

They were all a part of the Bush administration’s efforts to bolster the economy, and they did the job.

It is more than obvious that refusing to extend them in a time of economic problems can do nothing but cripple the economy further.

The Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act (EGTRRA) of 2001 created six new tax rate brackets — 10, 15, 25, 28, 33 and 35 percent, based on one’s income levels. Failure to extend these cuts means that the 10 percent bracket will be eliminated, and those taxpayers will automatically be boosted into the 15 percent bracket. That would apply to all incomes below $34,550. The other tax rates would increase to 28, 31, 36 and 39.6 percent. In other words, the effect will be a sizeable increase in taxes due.

One major provision due to expire at the end of this year is the child tax credit, which the 2001 tax cuts doubled from $500 to $1,000 per child. Unless Congress votes to extend this child tax credit, the maximum amount will revert back to $500 for tax year 2011, and the number of families eligible for that amount will be much smaller because stricter standards of eligibility that existed prior to the 2001 tax cuts will go back into effect.

Under those tax cuts, the maximum tax rate on long-term capital gains and qualified dividends was also reduced to 15 percent, with lower-income filers facing a 0 percent tax rate. Unless extended, the capital gains rate will go back to a maximum of 20 percent, and qualified dividends will resume being taxed at the regular tax rate of the filer, or as high as 39.6 percent.

It is simply impossible to believe that refusal to extend the 2001 and 2003 cuts will not harm the economy and endanger the nation’s economic health.

As the Heritage Foundation has noted, both the president and the congressional leadership have portrayed this debate as one between the “haves” and the “have nots,” the old tactic of promoting class warfare.

Instead, says Heritage, “This is a contest between those who want the blessings of strong economic growth versus those in Washington who would willingly sacrifice those blessings solely to satisfy their appetite for more revenues.

Heritage concluded that politics “has taken grip on this tax policy debate; the president in particular is making it a political debate rather than one on economic policy. The economic effects of not extending the 2001 and 2003 tax laws would impact all Americans, especially those who will just start their economic lives and the millions more trying to find work after the worst recession in 60 years.”

©2010 Mike Reagan. Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate. For info contact Cari Dawson Bartley. E-mail Cari@cagle.com, (800) 696-7561.

A Great Awakening

After some years of slumbering comfortably, the American people have awakened and they are hopping mad over what they have discovered was going on while they slept.

The stunning results of yesterday’s primary contests should be frightening not only to the Democrats, but to those Republicans in name only – RINOs – whose actions have been more or less barely indistinguishable from the Democratic party’s deranged left wing.

Both the RINOS and their Democratic counterparts have been showing sneering contempt for the voters for a long time and they are about to pay dearly for it. They have kicked the voters in the face for far too long a time and the chickens are now coming home to roost.

The despised Tea Party Express was a big winner last night, and as a result they have become a major voice on the political landscape, and for good reason. The Republican party does not have a clear voice or message and they haven’t had either for a long time. It is now the Tea Partiers who are speaking for the nation’s Republican voters. And they are speaking on behalf of good old fashioned American values.

The void left by the GOP has been filled by ordinary Americans who are mad as hell and not taking it anymore. The Democrats say that the Republicans are the party of “no,” but it might be better to describe them as the party of “don’t know.”

They don’t know that the voters will no longer allow them to lead them around by the nose, supinely accepting commands from on high. Rank and file Republicans are demanding that the party pay attention to their opinions, and when those demands fall on GOP deaf ears, party big wigs will find themselves without any followers.

The contempt they exhibit for such outstanding Republicans as Sarah Palin and South Carolina’s Sen. Jim DeMint is not shared by the great majority of Republicans who admire these outstanding patriots for speaking out in favor of traditional American values in the face of vehement opposition from the Left wings of both parties whose views are closer to those of Karl Marx than to those of Abraham Lincoln.

Despite sneering comments by such GOP luminaries as Karl Rove, rank and file Republicans, and a surprising number of independents and disaffected Democrats are flocking to the Tea Party Banner. And they have enough political common sense to recognize that when Sarah Palin speaks, she speaks for them and for their opinions in plain simple language.

We are witnessing a long delayed rebirth of participatory democracy where the people speak aloud and their party leadership listens. And those members of the leadership who don’t hear their voices will end up in the political graveyard.

Their message is loud and clear: America’s strength is in its people, not in their government. After years of seeing their states rendered all but powerless, states’ rights are once more a rallying cry. And the American people are telling Washington to get it’s hands out of their pockets and their private lives.

It is now incumbent on the Tea Party supported candidates to win in November, and for the RNC to keep in mind my father Ronald Reagan’s 11th commandment… Never speak ill of another Republican … and vigorously support the winners of last night’s primaries whether you like them or not.

Michael Steele wake up! Your fellow Republicans already have, as last night showed.

©2010 Mike Reagan. Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate. For info contact Cari Dawson Bartley. E-mail Cari@cagle.com, (800) 696-7561.

Got A Problem? Just Spend More Money You Don’t Have

Having plunged the nation into a deep financial crisis with his wild and unrestrained spending of money we do not have — on things the nation does not need — President Obama is now proposing to spend even more, claiming that this time it will work.

On Monday, he called on his pet Democratic-controlled Congress to turn on the money spigot once more, insisting that this time it will stimulate an economy in the doldrums and create jobs in a time of rising unemployment.

According to The New York Times, he asked Congress to appropriate vast sums of borrowed money to upgrade the nation’s roads, railroads and airport runways as part of a multi-billion dollar, six-year scheme — part of a plan that would cost tens of billions of dollars and create a government-run bank to finance allegedly innovative transportation projects.

It appears that the president, despite all the evidence to the contrary, is convinced that the best way of solving our economic woes is to pass the cost onto future generations yet unborn, and by supporting abortion of unborn humans he sharply limits the number of new humans to be burdened with paying for all of his wanton spending.

To make matters worse, he wants to heavily tax the very taxpayers who create jobs by investing the money he wants to wants to confiscate through taxes. If that doesn’t make any sense to you, you are one of the growing number of Americans who are beginning to believe that the president is seeking to impose a socialist system upon this nation.

Think about it. The best way to destroy an economic system is to destroy the economy. That will enable you to replace the destroyed system with one that you favor. And if everything you do vis-à-vis the economy seems right out of Karl Marx’s playbook, then the system you want to impose is a Marxist one.

Among his many approaches to solving our economic problems was the creation of a deficit commission that will study our economic problems and, after 10 months of diagnosing the problem, come up with a solution.

Does Mr. Obama really believe that we need a panel of wise men to tell us what anybody with an ounce of sense understands: that when you keep spending money you don’t have, thereby incurring unmentionably huge amounts of debt on which the annual interest alone equals the entire gross national product, you are not solving a problem, you are creating an even more serious one.

Just what steps is this commission expected to recommend? Well how about the solution all big government advocates are bound to recommend: raise taxes. As the Times asked, why should the taxpayers pay for the mistakes the government keeps making?

That’s a dandy idea. Confiscate a large part of the income of the so-called rich — you know, the folks who keep businesses going by investing in them, thereby limiting their ability to put money into the economy and making it possible for the firms in which they invest to grow and create new jobs.

Don’t expect this Congress to do anything that will really help the economy; for example, extending the Bush tax cuts. After all, that initially limits the amount of money the government can confiscate from the people whose investments keep the economy growing.

Uncle Sam needs that money to pay for all those government programs that ladle out money to the people. That’s never called what it is: buying people’s votes by giving them money taken from their fellow Americans.

But worry not. Barack Obama’s new commission will figure out a way to square the circle by recommending steps the pols would never dare take. And won’t.

©2010 Mike Reagan. Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate. For info contact Cari Dawson Bartley. E-mail Cari@cagle.com, (800) 696-7561.

Thanks for the Reminder, Glenn

Glenn Beck’s remarkable rally on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial Saturday was a wake-up call for his beloved America. This nation, he reminded us, is and has been since its founding a nation under God. Failure to recognize our absolute dependence upon God, he said, has put this nation in peril.

His warning echoed that my father once delivered when he told Americans, “When we stop being a nation under God, we will be a nation gone under.”

For a long time we have been slowly drifting away from that reality, acting as if our destiny were solely in our own hands — it’s as if we were saying to the Almighty, “Thanks for the ten suggestions, and such trivial admonitions as the Sermon on the Mount, but we’d rather do it our up-to-date modern way.”

I don’t need to remind you that doing it our way: slaughtering the innocent unborn by the tens of millions; now defying the integrity of marriage, that most ancient of institutions; allowing our government to be profligate not only with our own resources but those of generations to come has led us down the road to ruin for us and our children and our children’s children.

We have allowed our government and our representatives in Congress to squander not only our financial resources but those of future generations of American so that we can enjoy all those wondrous benefits Washington offers us, now and allegedly free of charge.

We have replaced the old adage that God proposes, man disposes. Now it’s solely man proposes. And what a mess we’ve made.

In his book, “The God that Did Not Fail” (Encounter Books), Robert Royal warns that the movement toward “progressive irreligion” encourages ignorance of religion’s unparalleled importance in the development and maintenance of western culture.

Glenn echoed that explanation of our current condition.

Prior to the Glenn Beck rally Saturday, our newest deity, the all-knowing mass media, predicted that Beck would rant and rage about politics and the current administration and perhaps provoke violence on a frightening scale.

It never occurred to the atheistic media that Glenn’s message would be about God’s love and our solemn obligation to love one another even as we love ourselves.

Much to their astonishment, instead of dwelling on the political differences that divide is, Glenn beseeched us to acknowledge our absolute dependence upon the Divine will and our obligation to love God and our neighbor, no matter who he is.

A friend of mine complained to me the other day that when he went to confession, the priest told him that he was obliged to love his neighbors, all of them. When he almost jokingly asked if that meant he even had to love Barack Obama, the priest said an emphatic “yes.”

Sometimes, he complained, God demands the impossible. The priest reminded him that with God’s help, all things are possible.

That, in a nutshell, is what Glenn Beck was telling us last Saturday: Love of God and love of neighbor, not political rhetoric and dissension, is the sole solution to our national woes.

My Dad, Ronald Reagan, warned us that a nation that shuns God is on the road to ruin.

Thanks again for the reminder, Glenn.

©2010 Mike Reagan. Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate. For info contact Cari Dawson Bartley. E-mail Cari@cagle.com, (800) 696-7561.

Obama Making Everybody Angry

It’s almost as if President Obama’s agenda includes provoking anger at himself.

And it’s not just Republicans he’s provoking. It’s just about anybody who crosses his path, even his party’s deranged left wing.

Long-time liberal Democratic Rep. Charles Rangel is a case in point. The veteran Harlem congressman reacted to criticism from the president, who called on him to “end his career with dignity,” by remarking that Obama hasn’t “been around long enough to determine what my dignity is.”

He added sarcastically that it’s more likely to be the other way around over the next two years, predicting the time will come when it will be he who will have to protect the president’s dignity.

Taking opposite sides over a two-day span, Obama first indicated opposition to the building of a mosque on the edge of Manhattan’s Ground Zero, and the next day opposed the idea.

After voicing his support Friday night, he reversed himself after his remarks sparked a firestorm of criticism, saying that he was merely noting that the Mosqueteers had a right to build there.

“I was not commenting and I will not comment on the wisdom of making the decision to put a mosque there,” Obama said. “I was commenting very specifically on the right people have that dates back to our founding. That’s what our country is about.”

Having taken both sides on the issue he managed to anger both supporters of the mosque and its opponents.

Hungry for all-out support from the left, he managed to alienate them when he failed to get the so-called government option that would have created a full socialistic health care system in the final version of the health care reform bill.

His continued support for the war in Afghanistan is angering the anti-war segment of the Democratic Party’s left wing, which wants the U.S. out of there, period.

For their part, the White House spokespeople adamantly deny that they are angry at leftist criticism, denying liberal claims that the White House is angry over their claims that President Obama is more worried about making deals than adhering to the liberal version of ideological purity.

According to White House press spokesman Robert Gibbs, liberals would never admit that anything Obama does is good enough to satisfy them.

“I hear these people saying he’s like George Bush,” Gibbs said, adding that such people ought to be tested for drugs. “I mean, it’s crazy.”

He dismissed what he called the “professional left,” adding, “They will be satisfied when we have Canadian healthcare and we’ve eliminated the Pentagon. That’s not reality.”

His final shot: “They wouldn’t be satisfied if Dennis Kucinich was president.”

Needless to say, conservatives are bristling with scorn over the president’s continued attacks on former President George W. Bush, who has been out of office for over two years.

Insisting that the current recession is Bush’s fault, the president and his fellow Democrats blatantly ignore that the Congress, which controls spending and the passage of all economic legislation ,was in the Democratic hands during the final four years of the Bush administration.

Noting that “[w]ith unemployment sky-high and the country sinking deeper into debt every minute, it’s clear that the last 19 months of “government-as-community-organizer” hasn’t worked,” said GOP House minority leader John Boehner.

“You know it. I know it. The American people know it. The only ones who don’t seem to get it are the Democrats running the White House and Congress. “

Zeroing in on unemployment, Boehner said, “We’ve exposed debacles in places like my home state where our Democratic governor sent “stimulus” tax dollars to El Salvador — yes, El Salvador — as Americans continue to ask “where are the jobs?”

And the top Democrat is Barack Obama. Is it any wonder he’s just about on top of about half of everyone’s list of most unpopular politicians?

©2010 Mike Reagan. Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate. For info contact Cari Dawson Bartley. E-mail Cari@cagle.com, (800) 696-7561.

Obama’s Choice: Boy Scouts or Islam

President Obama couldn’t bring himself to observe the National Day of Prayer or spend time with the Boy Scouts of America, but God forbid, he couldn’t miss the Muslim Iftar Ramadan dinner, or pass up a chance to praise an Islamic center a stone’s throw away from Ground Zero.

He later backed down — a bit.

One has to wonder exactly who is this Barack Obama? Is he the Muslim-educated student who has repeatedly proclaimed his Christian beliefs while finding himself unable to put a foot in a Christian church in Washington he can call his own, or is he an adult still motivated by the Muslim faith he learned and practiced as a young man?

This is a serious question, especially since Obama has gone out of his way to befriend a community, many of whom bear a deep hatred for the United States and a fanatical belief in the inevitability of supremacy of Islam over the United States.

Daniel Pipes writes that the Muslim population in this “country is not like any other group, for it includes within it a substantial body of people who desire, ultimately, to transform it into a nation living under the strictures of militant Islam.”

He cites the case of Siraj Wahaj, a black convert to Islam and the recipient of some of the American Muslim community’s highest honors, who in June 1991 had the privilege of becoming the first Muslim to deliver the daily prayer in the U.S. House of Representatives.

A little over a year later, addressing an audience of New Jersey Muslims, the same Wahaj said that “if only Muslims were more clever politically, they could take over the United States and replace its constitutional government with a caliphate.

Said Wahaj: “If we were united and strong, we’d elect our own emir [leader] and give allegiance to him. . . . [T]ake my word, if 6-8 million Muslims unite in America, the country will come to us.”

This is “the religion of peace”?

Writing in the August 5 Washington Times, Jeffery T. Kuhner warns that the decision to build a 13-story mosque and Muslim cultural center 600 feet from the site of Ground Zero represents the surrender of the United States to radical Islam. He insists that most New Yorkers and Americans do not want this mosque erected and warns that it will be “a symbolic monument to the triumph of Islamism in the Unites States.”

Kuhner notes that the attacks on 9/11 were “committed by Muslim extremists in the name of holy war against the West… [using] the Koran and Islamic principles to justify their actions.” Their ultimate goal, he warns, is “to impose a world Muslim empire based on Shariah law.”

“Ground Zero,” he explains, “is where the war came home to America,” and supporters of the mosque project push forward to make sure “the mosque will cast a giant, dark shadow over Ground Zero,” a constant reminder of Islam’s victory. “If Islamism can impose its will near the site of Sept. 11, then it can impose its will anywhere.”

Unfortunately, it appears that Islam is also imposing its will and casting a shadow over the Obama White House.

©2010 Mike Reagan. Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate. For info contact Cari Dawson Bartley. E-mail Cari@cagle.com, (800) 696-7561.