FIAF

Rich Lowry can recognize a planted line when he sees one:

Among all the words in the press airing the Obama administration’s secret national-security programs, one sentence stands out. Appearing in the New York Times, it explains why President Barack Obama personally approves drone strikes: “A student of writings on war by Augustine and Thomas Aquinas, he believes that he should take moral responsibility for such actions.”

Exactly where did that bit about Augustine and Thomas Aquinas come from? Who would know (or claim) that Obama is a student of fifth and 13th century Christian writers,and brag about it? A White House sycophant. Despite, of course, Obama’s claims that he is offended by the idea that the leaks came from the White House.

The Obama national-security leaks are overwhelmingly the product of vanity. They show off the president’s exquisitely thoughtful tough-mindedness and, above all, his killer instinct.

And, the Jewish vote.

*****

The Hammer on Obama’s “major speech”:

Shorter Krauthammer: “This isn’t a vision, it’s a rehash.” His big answer, he’s tried, and it’ failed. Healthcare, Stimulus.

****

Dana Milbank on yesterday’s speech:

I had high hopes for President Obama’s speech on the economy. But instead of going to Ohio on Thursday with a compelling plan for the future, the president gave Americans a falsehood wrapped in a fallacy.

The falsehood is that he has been serious about cutting government spending. The fallacy is that this election will be some sort of referendum that will break the logjam in Washington.

His words, uttered yesterday in Cleveland have no tether with reality.

My own deficit plan would strengthen Medicare and Medicaid for the long haul by slowing the growth of health-care costs — not shifting them to seniors and vulnerable families,” Obama said. “And my plan would reduce our yearly domestic spending to its lowest level as a share of the economy in nearly 60 years.”

That’s incorrect. As Politifact has pointed out, Obama’s claim that he would reduce annual domestic spending to a percentage of gross domestic product not seen in 60 years is true only if you don’t count the enormous spending on programs such as Medicare.

And this:

Of more concern is Obama’s nonsensical claim that he has a deficit plan that would strengthen Medicare for the long haul. He has called for doubling Medicare spending over the next 10 years, to nearly $1 trillion in 2022. His cuts in the rate of growth amount to just a few percentage points.

When Obama is speaking, it’s best to stick to the policy of trust but verify.

*****

It’s about the middle class, stupid.

The Federal Reserve released its latest “Survey of Consumer Finance” on Tuesday, which confirmed widely held sentiment with hard data: Americans are poorer today than they were in 2007, when the Great Recession hit.

The difference between now and then is massive. The median household saw almost 39 percent of its wealth evaporate, and real income (that is, the amount adjusted for inflation) fell 7.7 percent. Only the old and the bottom 20 percent on the income ladder escaped the wealth destruction and income loss.

The housing bubble started it all, but the policies from the Obama administration haven’t helped at all.

With Taxmageddon set to hit Jan. 1 as the George W. Bush tax cuts expire and businesses struggling under the weight of ever-expanding regulation from Washington, there’s little hope for meaningful recovery any time soon.

To the delight of the class warriors, the rich saw the biggest decline in income, with a mean drop of 16.2 percent. The bottom of the ladder saw its income increase slightly, by $500. In other words, Americans saw the leftists’ goal of reducing income inequality come true by making 80 percent of the population poorer.

Under Obama:

Middle-class families pay a great deal to Uncle Sam and rarely enjoy any breaks from the taxman. They saw their incomes drop between 7.7 and 12 percent. They are all likely to share the thought: “What recovery?”

Granny and Grandpa, on the other hand, are doing quite well, with the retired seeing their incomes jump 12 percent. They also have the lowest poverty rates of any demographic group, according to the Census. Incomes among the poorest in society are also going up.

Well, I’m depressed.

How about a little Radiohead?

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