How Obama wins 4

By Tom Quiner

Barack Obama will most likely be re-elected to the presidency.

Are his unfavorable ratings in the tank?

Yes.  A whopping 49% disapprove of the job the president is doing. Only 44% approve.

Is the economy in the tank? Is unemployment abysmal? Have incomes dropped?

Yes. Yes. Yes.

And yet the electorate prefers Democrats over Republicans 44% to 41%.

Think about it. Democrats have controlled the levers of power for years. They took over Congress in 2006. They took over the White House in 2008. They still control the Senate after a rocky midterm election in 2010.

With overwhelming power, they have made an absolute mess of our country. Their legislations, their Executive Orders, and their Czars have not repaired our country, they have made it worse. And yet the country still prefers them.


Because more people blame Wall Street for our problems than government.

Republicans are the party of business.

Democrats are the party of government.

Democrats have overwhelming support from the Mainstream Media (MSM) who spread the Occupy Wall Street message that the “one percent” are the problem, that the one percent have somehow taken wealth from the middle class and stuffed their own pockets.

Class envy is not only alive and well with Democrats, that is the only weapon they have to retain power. They surely can’t run on their record.

Here is what the president says:

” … over the past three decades, the middle class has lost ground while the wealthiest few have become even wealthier.  In fact, the average income for the top one percent of Americans has risen almost seven times faster than the income of the average middle class family. “

The MSM faithfully reports the president’s class warfare propaganda with little scrutiny. Much of the public accepts it at face value. Those who look a little deeper discover that the share of the wealth held by the top 1% was …

38.12% when Woodrow Wilson was president.

40.29% early in Franklin Roosevelt’s presidency

25.27% by 1940

25.25% when Kennedy was president.

22.86% when Nixon was president.

22.35% when Reagan was president.

20.86% when Bush I was president.

20.79% when Bush II was president.

Have you detected a trend? The reviled one percent have a shrinking chunk of the nation’s wealth according to the NBER studyTop Wealth Shares in the United States, 1916-2000: Evidence from Estate Tax Returns, by Wojciech Kopczuk and Emmanuel Saez. The chart below dispels the myth:

The Top 1% Wealth Share in the United States, 1916-2000

There’s another myth the party of government spreads with the support of the MSM: that our government spending crisis is the result of the “Bush Wars.” A quick glance at the chart below, prepared by the government’s Bureau of Economic Analysis, quickly reveals the true story:

Please note that this chart displays non-defense spending. Note also how the graph began to trend downward when Newt Gingrich became Speaker in 1995 and federal spending was reined in.

In August, the president said:

“Last week, we reached an agreement that will make historic cuts to defense and domestic spending.  But there’s not much further we can cut in either of those categories.”

Do you really believe there’s not much more that can be cut in light of the chart above which reveals how the party of government ratcheted up non-defense spending faster than you can say Obamacare?

Republicans win the election if voters understand the information above.

They lose if they don’t.

Class envy is a powerful weapon. It’s all the president and his party has to work with.

It may be all they need.

What is marriage? 2

By Tom Quiner

Marriage is …

“a covenant or partnership of life between a man and woman, which is ordered to the well-being of the spouses and to the procreation and upbringing of children. When validly contracted between two baptized people, marriage is a sacrament.”

The above citation is how the second edition of the Catechism of the Catholic Church defines marriage.

“Well, the state should never have gotten involved with licensing marriage in the first place. It should be left up to churches for those people who feel they need marriage.”

This was the argument I heard from a twenty-something law student in a friendly debate we had over a beer during a Monday Night Football game.

As I’ve pointed out in previous posts, our governments very much have a vested interest in marriage: to protect our children. Our communities are healthier and more vibrant when children are raised in an intact family bound together by the security of the marriage covenant.

As we have seen the marriage covenant frayed by no-fault divorce legislation and social experimentation on the very definition of marriage, our society has weakened whether you measure using economic or social pathology yardsticks.

A Quiner’s Diner reader in Illinois recently argued that …

” … gay partners are capable of love and of raising happy children. I don’t see what is remotely inhumane about that, and increasing the number of loving couples — couples to adopt unwanted children — seems like a pretty humane thing.”

Can gay partners love? Of course. Wouldn’t it be healthier for children to be raised by a mother and father in a traditional family?  Common sense says yes.

But that’s not even the point.  The point is all about definition.  Society defined marriage accordingly to protect women and their children from commitment-wary men.  It was in the best interests of society.  Marriage was not defined on the basis of the “relationship” between the partners.

Why would we launch a radical social experiment at a time when we have married heterosexual couples standing in line to adopt?

Catholics along with other Christians, Muslims, and Jews believe the environment of traditional marriage is the best way raise children. The current social experiment underway imposes the  will of the state on faith-based adoption agencies, such as Catholic Charities, and impels them to either disregard their religious beliefs and adopt to gay couples, or get out of the adoption business. This just happened again in Illinois (as it did in Massachusetts and San Francisco) where Catholic Charities had to do just that: get out of the adoption business, despite the availability of non-Catholic adoption agencies that will adopt to same-sex couples.

To Catholics, marriage is a sacrament:

” … an efficacious sign of grace, instituted by Christ and entrusted to the Church, by which divine life is dispensed to us through the work of the Holy Spirit.”

New definitions of marriage which carry the imprimatur of the state are setting up clashes with our religious liberties, as demonstrated by the one example above.

Some resort to characterizing believers in traditional marriage as being gay-bashers and homophobes. This is a tactic commonly used to halt the debate. It is nonsense, of course.

The Catholic Church, for example, believes that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered” because they are contrary to the natural law. But they go on to say people with same-sex attractions must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity.”

This respect, compassion, and sensitivity does not extend to redefining marriage.



Can I put you on? 2

By Tom Quiner

What do Elton John and Barack Obama have in common?

A song.

Today is the 41st anniversary of Mr. John’s first live album titled 11.17.70.  It was recorded on November 17th, 1970, in the A & R Studios in New York and was broadcast live on radio.

This album was one of my first exposures to Mr. John’s music, and I was quite taken with it. I’m a piano player. Most of the rock music of the mid and late 60s was driven by the electric guitar. I like rock music that is driven by the piano. I like it even better when accompanied by strong melody.

That’s what Elton delivered then and now: pop rock music with infectious melodies and great piano accompaniment.

Listening to some of the tracks from 11.17.70 today, I couldn’t help but think of President Obama as I reacquainted  myself with the song, “Can I put you on?” which I’ve  linked above.

Mr. John sings Bernie Taupin’s lyrics which features this relevant refrain:

“Can I put you on, people can I put you on
Tell you that I love you people
Sing a salesman’s song and put you on.”

Mr. Obama puts us on when he talks about jobs. Take the Korean Free Trade Agreement. The Bush administration initiated, negotiated and finalized this job creator for America in 2007. It required final confirmation from the new President and new Congress.

They sat on it in 2008 as unemployment went up.

They sat on it in 2009 as unemployment went up.

They sat on it in 2010 as unemployment continue to hover above nine percent.

Finally, after three years of economic stagnation, the president and his party finally passed the thing in December. But while we dawdled, Europe swooped in and cut their own agreement with South Korea at America’s expense.

This president claims he’s all about creating jobs. As Elton would say, “Can I put you on?”

The same thing happened with the Columbia Free Trade Agreement, another job creator for America. President Bush and his team had the agreement all set to go in 2007. The Obama/Reid team sat on it as American stagnated, until just a few weeks ago.

Why all the delays? The unions got involved and wanted the agreements to be less free.

This president claims he’s all about creating jobs. As Elton would say, “Can I put you on?”

Some of the best jobs in America are energy jobs. And yet the president has blocked offshore drilling for oil even as Mexico, Russia, Cuba, and Canada move into to scoop up the oil in fields adjacent to ours.

The president has put the Keystone XL pipeline on hold until after the election, which puts on hold the 20,000 jobs economists say would be created by building this pipeline from Canada to Texas. So what is Canada going to do in the meantime? Prime Minister Harper says they’ll send the energy to Asia instead.

This president is only interested in creating jobs for public employee unions (who received billions from the Obama stimulus package) and green energy companies like Solyndra who take our money, spread it among Obama campaign contributors, and then go broke.

In the meantime, Asia, Russia, Cuba, Canada, Mexico, and everyone else is snatching up our jobs while the president plays liberal politics.

This president is about creating jobs?

“Can I put you on?”





Modern man’s struggle to be humane 2

By Tom Quiner

How could this happen?

I refer to the tragic child molestation accusations at Penn State. Children and adolescents have once again gotten caught in the cross hairs of modern man’s self absorption with gratification. The carnage in the wake of America’s assault on the defenseless is beyond human calculation.

We were shocked when we discovered how the Nazis had systematically exterminated the Jews because they simply hated them. Never again! is how the world responded. And yet the Penn State horror is not new in America and is of a magnitude that surpasses the Holocaust.

To my Jewish friends and readers, I do not minimize the profound inhumanity of the Holocaust. I do not mean to trivialize the loss felt by mankind in the needless deaths of six million Jews.

But America has exterminated 35 million pre-born babies in the name of women’s rights. And it wasn’t even done out of hate, it was done out of convenience.

Mankind has fought an ongoing battle to be humane. What does it mean to be humane? To treat people as human beings.

We’re not doing a very good job when we treat Jews as objects instead of seeing each Jew as a human being.

We’re not doing a very good job when we treat the baby in the womb as an object instead of seeing each as a human being.

We’re not doing a very good job when we let pornography flourish, a sickness that treats people as objects instead of as human beings.

We’re not doing a very good job when we turn marriage upside down and make it about desire and feelings alone without consideration for the children it affects.

We’re all struggling hard to be more human, more fully alive. Civil society has a self-interest in promoting policy that nurtures our “humanity gene.” Abortion, pornography, and redefined marriage laws work against humanity. They’re breeding self-absorption and self-gratification.

It’s no wonder children are getting caught in the cross fire.

The Catholic Church has taken the lead in cleaning up the mess in its own house. The incidence of reported child abuse in the American Catholic Church has dropped to almost nothing. Not so in our public schools.

As Edmund Burke said, “all that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” We need to be diligent in protecting the pre-born, the children, and adolescents in our institutions.

Our struggle to be more humane starts with protecting the most vulnerable. We need to do so much better.

We capable of so much more.