Clip-and-file talk radio quotes

“I’m a radio guy. I do a radio program. And my success here is defined by radio and broadcast business metrics, not political. It never has been defined by political metrics. I’ve never wanted it to be.” — Rush Limbaugh

“I think the conservative media is the worst thing that has ever happened to the Republican Party on a national level.” — John Ziegler

“How can DOJ’s lawyers look themselves in the mirror?”

Legal scholar Michael Greve has a few acerbic things to say about recent developments in Texas v. United States — a case in which more than a dozen plaintiffs have challenged Obama adminsitration rules regarding access to restrooms, locker rooms, and showers:

Last week, in a case brought by the State of Texas and several other states and state agencies, a U.S. District Court (Judge Reed O’Connor, Northern District, Texas) issued a preliminary injunction against the feds’ rule … regarding bathroom, locker room, and shower access for transgendered individuals…. The ruling is just one brief episode in the transgender bathroom saga, whose trajectory points to yet another Supreme Court determination on conflicts between the Constitution’s Meaning of Life Clause and the rule of law as we thought we knew it. (Said conflict is resolved by the proposition that a right-minded administration gets to do what it wants.) But the decision is still worth a few remarks….

In 38 double-spaced pages, including the summary of the background and legal standards and the signature page, the judge disposes of the government’s multiple defenses to the highly unusual remedy of a preliminary injunction….

Can a court dispose of a half-dozen fairly complicated questions in an opinion you can write in an idle afternoon, over a six-pack of Coors? In this case, any of my AdLaw students could…. These defenses … were either cranked up by a moron or else, in bad faith. Judge Reed’s opinion rests not on some abstruse theory but on rote citations, directly on point….

In response to the ruling, the DOJ said it was “disappointed.” It was not: it knew it was coming. They’re not idiots; they’re strategists. The strategy is to do the thing you want to do even if it’s obviously illegal; to hammer the nearest target (North Carolina), in a legal setting where the defenses are attenuated and the defendants look obstinate or worse; and to bet that the media drumbeat will carry you through.

The amazing thing about Judge Reed’s ruling is not the result but its anodyne tone: how does a district court confronted with this stuff keep its cool? That question in turn begets others: how can DOJ’s lawyers look themselves in the mirror, and how can a rule-of-law country live with lawyers who can?

 

“Powerful people sometimes do things to help people like me without really understanding people like me.”

In yet another review of Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance, the London Spectator’s  Helen Dale notes that:

Vance makes few policy suggestions, most of them mild. However, his account of a debate in the Ohio Senate on a Bill to curb payday lenders is salutary.

He points out – with his poor credit history – that he has had recourse to payday lenders. On one occasion, he avoided a large overdraft fee. Without a payday lender, he’d have been forced to go to a loan shark – which, given the drug culture among poor whites, could have been injurious to his health.

‘The legislators debating the merits of payday lending didn’t mention situations like that,’ he notes. ‘The lesson? Powerful people sometimes do things to help people like me without really understanding people like me’.

H/T to Walter Olson at overlawyered.com.

Politics and central banking through the years

Anyone who believes central bankers in a democracy can steer a consistent course free from political influence hasn’t spent much time studying the historical record.

Wake Forest economist John Wood has studied the history. Wood offered the John Locke Foundation’s Shaftesbury Society multiple examples of political central banking decisions in the United States and Great Britain in the 19th century.

In the video clip below, Wood explains that central bankers often end up doing more harm than good.

3:50 p.m. update: Click play below to watch the full presentation.

Shocking—shocking I tell you–headline of the day

Today’s Greensboro News & Record print edition:

Roadwork now off pace, over budget

Read the article here.

“They are doing this to Reidsville, I guess, because they think Reidsville is a Podunk town and they can get by with it,” said local attorney Daniel Bailey, whose law office is in the 1700 block of Freeway Drive.

The delay and continual disruption have been tough on businesses along the route, said Bailey, who added that because of the disruption he lost at least one tenant in his building that he owns.

“It’s killing them,” Bailey said of restaurants and other businesses along the route. “We’ve had absolutely beautiful weather for paving and I don’t think I’ve ever seen more than two paving crews out there at any one time, when there could be eight.”

Reidsville Mayor Jay Donecker counters that Bailey goes overboard in his criticism, that there are understandable explanations for the delay and that Reidsville will have a wonderfully upgraded transportation asset when the project is complete, hopefully, late this year.

“Is it the best job or the most perfect job?” Donecker asked rhetorically in a recent interview. “No.”

Obamacare’s woes a boon for Burr?

He’s not mentioned in the piece, but U.S. Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina could be one of the incumbents who stands to benefit this fall from the phenomenon described in a Politico article from Rachana Pradhan and Paul Demko.

As insurers push large premium increases for 2017 Obamacare plans, some of the steepest hikes have been requested by insurers in crucial swing states that could determine control of the Senate.

In nine of 11 states with competitive Senate races, at least one insurer seeks to hike rates for Obamacare customers by at least 30 percent next year: Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield in Pennsylvania wants to jack up average premiums by more than 40 percent. In Wisconsin, three insurers have asked for rate hikes of more than 30 percent. In New Hampshire, two of the five carriers want to sell plans with rate increase above 30 percent.

The potential sticker shock — coupled with the likelihood many consumers will have fewer choices next year after major insurers scale back their exchange participation — creates a potential political opening for Republican candidates, especially since the next Obamacare enrollment season starts one week before Election Day.

“People who are feeling it in their pocketbooks are going to be very unhappy about [rate hikes],” said Brian Walsh, a former communications director for the National Republican Senatorial Committee. “You would expect to see this will be part of the campaign messaging for House and Senate Republicans. … If it hasn’t started, it will be coming.”

While Donald Trump often cites eye-popping rate hikes as proof the health care law is a “disaster,” rate hikes haven’t yet emerged as a major campaign issue in most Senate races — although several Republicans said they plan to spotlight the issue in the fall. …

… The reality is that most Obamacare customers won’t have to pay headline-grabbing rate hikes since the vast majority are eligible for federal subsidies that reduce their monthly insurance costs. And proposed rates, which HHS posted publicly earlier this month, are likely to come down under regulatory scrutiny.

However, millions of people who buy their own coverage and who don’t receive federal help will be exposed to the full rate hikes unless they can switch into a cheaper plan. …

… GOP strategists said some Republicans are missing an opportunity to run on Obamacare’s missteps. Massive rate hikes and fewer insurance options this year could be attractive fodder for 30-second attack ads.

Clinton’s toothless media interlocutors

John Merline of Investor’s Business Daily explores the mainstream media’s meek reaction to Hillary Clinton’s presidential bid.

If the public ever wanted to get a taste of just how hopelessly partisan and unreliable the mainstream press has become, all they need to do is pay attention to how they act around politicians.

When reporters are covering a Republican, they are always in a bad mood. The questions are hostile and argumentative. Reporters never let a Republican politician stick to talking points. They interrupt. They scoff. They exchange eye rolls. They always ask tough follow-up questions.

But when it’s a Democrat, the atmosphere is always calm and friendly. Reporters always laugh at a Democrat’s jokes, particularly if the jokes are at the expense of a Republican. They act apologetic if they are posing a “difficult” question. They rarely press an issue that the Democratic politician doesn’t want to talk about. They let Democrats filibuster and set the agenda.

This phenomenon was glaringly in evidence on Thursday, after Clinton gave a blistering speech in Reno, Nev., in which she called Donald Trump a racist. …

… [R]eporters should be ravenous to get Clinton to answer questions. Particularly after recent troubling revelations from previously hidden emails about the Clinton Foundation that she has yet to answer for.

And, according to the reporters themselves, they did try, as Clinton stood around tasting chocolates offered to her by Dorinda’s Chocolates, a local upscale chocolatier.

NPR’s Tamara Keith tweeted that: “Press corps tried to ask [email protected] questions re foundation etc. She encouraged us to try the chocolates.”

Tried to ask? Not really.

Based on a video taken after the Reno speech, and posted in a tweet by Seth Richardson at the Reno Gazette-Journal, while Clinton was praising the confectionaries, reporters stood patiently, and quietly by. There were no shouted questions. No sense of urgency. Nothing.

The best one media “bloodhound” could muster was to meekly say to Clinton: “Now’s a good time for questions, right?”

To which, Clinton responded: “I want you to offer it (the tray of chocolates) to all the press here. So wonderful, so cooperative.”

There wasn’t a peep of protest from any reporter present at this blatant affront to their objectivity and professionalism. Hillary just moved on.

For those who believe ‘It’s the economy, stupid’ still holds true

Steve Moore writes at FoxNews.com about the latest evidence of the American economy’s ongoing struggles.

No wonder Hillary doesn’t want to talk about the economy. ?

We got revised GDP numbers from the Commerce Department on Friday and the economy actually did slightly WORSE than originally estimated. Growth was 1.1 percent in the second quarter of this year and less than 1 percent for the first six months of 2016. The business sector of the economy has sunk recession territory. Profits are srinking (down 2.4 percent last quarter) so how long can the stock market rise?

The consumer is keeping the economy out of negative territory, but that’s only because we are spending more than we are earning.

How long can that go on? About as long as the housing bubble could inflate without bursting.

For years the polls have shown that Americans are hyper-concerned about the economy and job security. That was when the economy was growing at a meek 2 percent. Now at 1 percent, we aren’t just treading water, more families are being plunged underwater.

This is some recovery. Under Reagan we had growth rates quarterly of 5, 6 and even 7 percent. Economists in the ’80s worried about overheating. Too much growth. Now growth is nowhere to be seen – except for those at the very top of the income ladder.

The Democrats who keep saying how well the economy is doing seem to be living in an alternative universe. And that’s probably because so many of the leftwing pundits and economists live and work in Washington DC, which really is doing just fine – thank you. DC is booming thanks to the tribute taxpayers from real America send each month to the capital. Three of the five wealthiest counties are around DC. That tells you everything about who is getting rich off liberal government expansion policies.