Friday, December 31, 2010

The high costs of 50 years of pesticide paranoia and the EPA

The progressives are destroying our way of life, piece by piece. The EPA, without benefit of Congressional oversight, continues to over-regulate with the sole purpose, not to correct known problems, but to gain control over major segments of the economy. Hopefully the new Republican House will be able to bring this to a screeching halt.

Government overreach led to November's voter revolt and congressional shake-up, but one wonders if President Obama is listening and will rein in his own administration, particularly the Environmental Protection Agency.

The EPA has been the progressive agenda's vehicle on climate change, pesticide regulation and other orders totaling 29 major regulations and 172 major policy rules, far outpacing previous presidential administrations.

The more challenging legislative road ahead could lead the EPA to an even more strident path in its regulatory overreach. This could spell bad news in particular for American farmers, when you consider the shaky foundations on which the EPA builds its regulatory cases.

Why does the government increasingly seek to quash the technologies that make the American farmer so phenomenally productive?

Thank Rachel Carson. Children are still taught the environmentalist's 1962 book, "Silent Spring," showing DDT thinning out bird eggshells and leading to the American bald eagle's extinction.

Despite thorough debunking of the "Silent Spring" morality tale, Carson's pioneering scare tactic has been endlessly replicated against one useful chemical after another.

The result is toxic policy that be counted in the needless deaths of millions of Africans from malaria, countless preventable illnesses, and more threats today against the livelihoods of farmers across America. You can learn more about this in my "Pesticide Activism: Fifty Years of Panic and Propaganda."

With DDT demonized, the EPA's political leadership found it easy to ban it as a possible human carcinogen. (In fact, a 1997 Harvard medical study found no link between DDT exposures and cancers of any type.)

Carson's formula was repeated with greater success against Alar, a plant-growth regulator used to manage apple ripening. The anti-pesticide activists at the Natural Resources Defense Council mounted a campaign in the 1980s to force the EPA to conduct an absurd experiment of pumping mice with doses of a breakdown product of Alar that were more than 100,000 times the highest estimate of a preschooler's daily intake.

Read the full Washington Examiner article here.

Prager University: The Middle East Problem Simplified

GEICO's R. Lee Ermey, appearing on behalf of Toys 4 Tots & USO unloads on President Obama

Love this guy!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

If the FCC Had Regulated the Internet

Article surmises what would happen if the Feds regulated the Internet from day one. An entertaining read, if you can laugh at what is happening now.

The Federal Communications Commission recently issued new rules regulating the Internet—even though it doesn't appear to have such powers. A federal court gangster-slapped the commission last year, accusing it of regulatory overreach for attempting to dictate Internet policy to service providers. These new regulations got me to thinking of where we would be today if the FCC had regulated the Internet from the get-go. …

Read entire Slate article here.

The Real Number of Uninsured Americans

The Weekly Standard examines the myth published in the Huffington Post that there are 50 million Americans without health insurance. In reading the article you will find:

Total claimed by the Huffington Post:                                  50 million
Take out those on Medicaid                                                          -  8     "
Eliminate non-citizens                                                                     -10    "
Less those that elect not to buy insurance                        -20    "
Balance without insurance that can't afford it                 12 million

There is a cheaper and less intrusive way, for even the nanny state, to cover this group that represent less than 5% of the population.  Destroying the best medical system in the world for the 95% in order to cover the last 5% is not done for humanitarian purposes.  It is the Socialist's thinking, pure and simple.


 Even the Census’s CPS ASEC report shows that the number of uninsured Americans is 32 million (not 50 million). It also shows that almost half of these 32 million make more money than most Americans. And Gallup shows that nearly 20 million of these 32 million say they are already happy with their health care. That leaves something on the order of 12 million Americans who are uninsured andunhappy with their health care — less than 5 percent of the citizenry. 
The easiest way to help these less-than-5 percent of Americans is to fix the unfairness in the federal tax code, which forces most people who don’t get health insurance through their employer to try to buy it with post-tax dollars, while the vast majority of Americans buy it with pre-tax dollars (usually through their employer). My small bill proposal estimates that this approach, along with other commonsense provisions, could reduce the number of uninsured Americans by about 10 million people. The small bill would also reduce health costs — without exploding federal spending and deficits, jeopardizing the preexisting health insurance of millions, or compromising Americans’ liberty.
The tale that nearly 50 million Americans are uninsured and lack sufficient health care actually contains two falsehoods in one. In truth, there aren’t anywhere near 50 million uninsured Americans, and — by their own assessment — most uninsured Americans don’t lack sufficient health care. Claims to the contrary may be useful to those who support a government takeover of what will soon be one-fifth of our economy. But they don’t withstand examination any better than do the government-centric solutions that they are designed to advance.
Read the full The Weekly Standard article here.

Monday, December 27, 2010

The Other Way to Repeal Obamacare

This Weekly Standard Blog post gives an alternative method to attack ObamaCare. It also is a way to restore our Federalist system and regain the freedom that our founders envisioned.

The New York Times reports that incoming House majority leader Eric Cantor (R., Va.) and legislative leaders in 12 states are backing a repeal amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The proposed amendment, launched by Georgetown law professor Randy Barnett, would empower two-thirds of the states, acting through their legislatures, to repeal any federal law or regulation.

It’s hard to see any downside to such a proposal. The federal government has clearly acquired far too much power, many members of this Congress and this administration are at a loss to name any limits to the scope of federal power, and the erosion of federalism has severely compromised Americans’ rights.

In The Federalist, No. 51, James Madison wrote of the “double security” that the Constitution provides “to the rights of the people” – the separation of powers, and federalism. Madison explained, “In the compound republic of America, the power surrendered by the people is first divided between two distinct governments, and then the portion allotted to each subdivided among distinct and separate departments. Hence a double security arises to the rights of the people. The different governments will control each other, at the same time that each will be controlled by itself.”

Read full Weekly Standard Blog article here.

Read NYT article here.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Education Reform in 2010

This article by Romina Boccia of The Independent Women's Forum is a fair summary of the advances or lack thereof in public education. Makes a good basis for the neutering of teachers' unions and elimination of the Department of Education.

2010 was marked by;

- The implementation of sweeping changes in teacher employment and pay in NYC and DC

- The release of three movies covering the need for broad education reform across the nation

- The first-time use of parent trigger to turn a failing school around in California

- A wider awareness of the positive role technology can play in raising academic achievement

- A growing public debate on the neglected role of parental choice and empowerment in the education of America's children.

Policy makers should build on this momentum in 2011 to further improve American education policy.

One thing becomes clear as part of a review of the diversity of reform approaches we experienced in 2010. There is no effective one-size-fits all solution to education reform. Attempts by the federal government to reform education on the national level, through Race to the Top and No-Child-Left-Behind for example, are the wrong approach to affecting real change in American education. Decisions over changes to education policy are best made on a local level in states and localities, and the most promising reform efforts are those that empower the main stakeholders to participate fully in the process: parents and children.

Read full article here.

Census 2010: Everyone’s Moving to Texas!

The effects of Northern unions and low taxes have made the sunny South a mecca for the productive class. The recent census lends credence to the conservative viewpoint that high taxes are an albatross on the back of free enterprise and personal responsibility. California, no gain; New York loss of 2.

Texas’ diversified economy, business-friendly regulations and low taxes have attracted not only immigrants but substantial inflow from the other 49 states. As a result, the 2010 reapportionment gives Texas four additional House seats. In contrast, California gets no new House seats, for the first time since it was admitted to the Union in 1850.

There’s a similar lesson in the fact that Florida gains two seats in the reapportionment and New York loses two.

This leads to a second point, which is that growth tends to be stronger where taxes are lower. Seven of the nine states that do not levy an income tax grew faster than the national average. The other two, South Dakota and New Hampshire, had the fastest growth in their regions, the Midwest and New England.

Thanks to unexpectedly large gains in state legislatures, Republicans stand to control the redistricting process in 18 states with 204 House districts, while Democrats will control it in only seven states with 49 districts. That doesn’t guarantee continued Republican majorities, but it’s probably worth 10 to 15 seats.
Read full article here.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!


Obama's "Death Panels" Revisited By Executive Regulation

Whether or not these "advanced care consultations" are truly the beginning of "death panels", this end around by the Executive branch is a direct repudiation of the intent of Congress. Under extreme pressure, Congress dropped provisions for "end of life counseling" from the final health care bill.

The highlighted segment below shows that the architects of the regulation recognized that there would be problems if Congress were made aware of this provision. Thus the email trying to hush it up. As in the Watergate scandal, sometimes the cover-up is worse than the crime.

When a proposal to encourage end-of-life planning touched off a political storm over “death panels,” Democrats dropped it from legislation to overhaul the health care system. But the Obama administration will achieve the same goal by regulation, starting Jan. 1.

Under the new policy, outlined in a Medicare regulation, the government will pay doctors who advise patients on options for end-of-life care, which may include advance directives to forgo aggressive life-sustaining treatment.

Section 1233 of the bill passed by the House in November 2009 — but not included in the final legislation — allowed Medicare to pay for consultations about advance care planning every five years. In contrast, the new rule allows annual discussions as part of the wellness visit.

Elizabeth D. Wickham, executive director of LifeTree, which describes itself as “a pro-life Christian educational ministry,” said she was concerned that end-of-life counseling would encourage patients to forgo or curtail care, thus hastening death.

“The infamous Section 1233 is still alive and kicking,” Ms. Wickham said. “Patients will lose the ability to control treatments at the end of life.” 

Mr. Blumenauer, the author of the original end-of-life proposal, praised the rule as “a step in the right direction.”

“It will give people more control over the care they receive,” Mr. Blumenauer said in an interview. “It means that doctors and patients can have these conversations in the normal course of business, as part of our health care routine, not as something put off until we are forced to do it.”

After learning of the administration’s decision, Mr. Blumenauer’s office celebrated “a quiet victory,” but urged supporters not to crow about it.

“While we are very happy with the result, we won’t be shouting it from the rooftops because we aren’t out of the woods yet,” Mr. Blumenauer’s office said in an e-mail in early November to people working with him on the issue. “This regulation could be modified or reversed, especially if Republican leaders try to use this small provision to perpetuate the ‘death panel’ myth.”

Moreover, the e-mail said: “We would ask that you not broadcast this accomplishment out to any of your lists, even if they are ‘supporters’ — e-mails can too easily be forwarded.”

The e-mail continued: “Thus far, it seems that no press or blogs have discovered it, but we will be keeping a close watch and may be calling on you if we need a rapid, targeted response. The longer this goes unnoticed, the better our chances of keeping it.”

In the interview, Mr. Blumenauer said, “Lies can go viral if people use them for political purposes.”

Read full NYT article here.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

FCC Gives Government Power to Regulate Web Traffic

I love this sentence in the report: "A divided Federal Communications Commission approved a proposal by Chairman Julius Genachowski to give the FCC power to prevent broadband providers from selectively blocking web traffic."

In other words, the FCC gave itself the authority to regulate the internet. What happened to requiring the "people's representatives" to vote on something of this magnitude. It appears that the Executive branch has gone from enforcing the laws enacted by Congress, to creating the laws themselves. We all know that, for many years, the regulations formulated by the various departments have gradually transferred the power of Congress to the Executive branch.

With the "power of the purse strings", perhaps the new Republican majority in the House will be able to stem the tide and reign in the White House. A 50% budget reduction for the FCC might be a good start.

Federal telecommunications regulators approved new rules Tuesday that would for the first time give the federal government formal authority to regulate Internet traffic, although how much or for how long remained unclear.

The FCC has approved rules that would give the federal government authority to regulate Internet traffic and prevent broadband providers from selectively blocking web traffic. WSJ's Amy Schatz explains what the new rules really mean.

The rules will go into effect early next year, but legal challenges or action by Congress could block the FCC's action. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) on Tuesday called the FCC's action "flawed" and said lawmakers would "have an opportunity in the new Congress to push back against new rules and regulations."

Read the full WSJ article here.

Income Taxes Are For Redistribution And Control - Inflation Is The Other "Tax"

I read an article the other day that said the Fed wants to keep inflation around 3%. How they will do this, while all along printing billions and billions of dollars of unsupported currency, I do not know. Many economists predict higher and higher inflation as other countries come to realize the sad state of the US economy.

While investments tend to lessen the effect of inflation, those of you who like to remain financially liquid, trusting in bank deposits, low interest CD's or coffee cans in the backyard, the 3% is a direct tax on these savings.

The government, however, pays off their fixed debt with deflated dollars, thus the article below, calling the Federal Income Tax a social control tool rather than the primary source of financial support for the government.

Let's see. 3% of $13,884,000,000,000 (current national debt), is $416,520,000,000 saved each year by the government. Of course that comes out of the pensions and other investments you have that are invested in Government obligations. Over the years that could add up to real money.

I just checked the value of the dollar in the year I was born, 1940. The calculator came up with this: $1.00 in 1940 had the same buying power as $15.42 in 2010. Annual inflation over this period was 3.99%

Actually the income tax has a dual purpose, and neither is to pay taxes to the government. Its first purpose is to control and redistribute the volume of money. James A. Garfield, the 20th President of the United States said, “Whoever controls the volume of money in any country is absolute master of all industry and commerce.”

The second reason the income tax system exists is to keep a dossier on all citizens. The 1040 tax return is your personal profile.

Governments make war on their own citizens by depreciating the currency. As the currency is depreciated (inflated) the people are impoverished. There is no way to protect financial assets with a fiat paper money system except as paper money is converted to gold and silver.

Depreciating paper money is not a store of wealth. Gold and silver are. One can bury paper money and the money creators and tax collectors do not know where it is. Yet the State can steal the purchasing power of paper money by creating more paper money and diluting the buried paper money.

The transfer of wealth from the producers and savers to the government is a simple process of increasing the quantity of money. This fact eliminates the need for income taxes.

Using words spoken by Beardsley Ruml, chairman of the New York Federal Reserve from 1941 to 1946, we can dispel the widely believed myth that income taxes are needed for government income. Income taxes have nothing to do with providing income to the government.

In a famous speech he read before the American Bar Association during the last year of World War II, titled Taxes for Revenue Are Obsolete, Ruml said, “The necessity for a government to tax in order to maintain both its independence and its solvency is true for state and local governments, but it is not true for a national government.”

The speech was originally printed in American Affairs in the January, 1946 issue. The editor of American Affairs wrote: “His (Ruml’s) thesis is that given (1) control of a central banking system and (2)an inconvertible currency, a sovereign national government is finally free of money worries and need no longer levy taxes for the purpose of providing itself with revenue. All taxation, therefore,should be regarded from the point of view of social and economic consequences.”

Read Ruml's full speech here.

Read full Personal Liberty Digest article here.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Cap-And-Trade Tosses An Anchor To Drowning California Economy

According to Chuck DeVore, the implementation of AB32 will result in the following:

- A lucrative source of income for the state at the expense of the consumer. This comes from the sale of carbon allowances.

- Use of funds for pork rather than its clean air purpose.

- Fraud in the exchange of carbon credits causing an outflow of funds from California

- Political favors exempting "friends" from the pain

- An outflow of funds from California to purchase credits from "third world" countries that are riddled with fraud.

- Closure of some California refineries that cannot comply with the law

- Gasoline price increase of 30% to 80% for Californians

After bankrupting an already bankrupt state, AB32 has no redeeming value and must be repealed for the state to survive. The environuts have no regard for the economy or the people of the state and rely on failed solutions to advance their agenda of control.

California often leads the nation, especially in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The act of leading is one thing, however. Leadership's outcome is another matter entirely.

On Friday, the California Air Resources Board (CARB), the bureaucracy charged with implementing AB 32, the California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, adopted a cap-and-trade scheme to reduce California's greenhouse gas emissions by about 15% by 2020. CARB's regulations go into effect in 2012.

The unelected officials at CARB intend to reorder California's use of energy. In so doing they blandly declaim that their rules will create jobs while admitting to higher energy costs and a slowing economy. Somehow, this formula is transmogrified by CARB analysts into net job creation.

Given the immutable laws of math, one is forced to calculate that CARB's actions will "create" low-paying jobs at the expense of good jobs.
CARB's new cap-and-trade rules will place yet another load on California's teetering economy. Yet with AB 32 the law of the land, CARB has little choice, other than encouraging an ambitious program to build modern nuclear power plants to reduce California's carbon footprint.

A likelier course will be the repeal of AB 32 before the end of the decade as Californians come to realize that the Golden State's go-it-alone approach to reducing transportation-fuel carbon intensity isn't immune to the laws of economics or physics.

Read full Chuck DeVore article in Investors Business Daily here.

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Thursday, December 16, 2010

Michelle Obama's Thank You To The American Taxpayer

Dear American Taxpayer

For only the second time in my adult life, I am not ashamed of my country. I want to thank the hard working American people for paying $242 thousand dollars for my vacation in Spain . My daughter Sasha, several long-time family friends, my personal staff and various guests had a wonderful time. Honestly, you just haven't lived until you have stayed in a $2,500.00 per night suite at a 5-Star luxury hotel. Thank you also for the use of Air Force 2 and the 70 Secret Service personnel who tagged along to be sure we were safe and cared for at all times.

Air Force 2 only used 47,500 gallons of jet fuel for this trip and carbon emissions were a mere 1,031 tons of CO2. These are only rough estimates, but they are close. That's quite a carbon footprint as my good friend Al Gore would say, so we must ask the American citizens to drive smaller, more fuel efficient cars and drive less too, so we can lessen our combined carbon footprint.

I know times are hard and millions of you are struggling to put food on the table and trying to make ends meet. I do appreciate your sacrifice and do hope you find work soon. I was really exhausted after Barack took our family on a luxury vacation in Maine a few weeks ago. I just had to get away for a few days.


Michelle (Moochelle) Obama

P.S. Thank you as well for the $2 BILLION trip to India we are currently on! Love ya, mean it.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

To All My Democratic Friends:

Please accept with no obligation, implied or explicit, my best wishes for an environmentally conscious, socially responsible, low-stress, non-addictive, gender-neutral celebration of the winter solstice holiday, practiced within the most enjoyable traditions of the religious persuasion of your choice, or secular practices of your choice, with respect for the religious/secular persuasion and/or traditions of others, or their choice not to practice religious or secular traditions at all.

I also wish you a fiscally successful, personally fulfilling and medically uncomplicated recognition of the onset of the generally accepted calendar year 2011 but not without due respect for the calendars of choice of other cultures whose contributions to society have helped make America great.

Not to imply that America is necessarily greater than any other country nor the only America in the Western Hemisphere.

Also, this wish is made without regard to the race, creed, color, age, physical ability, religious faith or sexual preference of the wishee.

To My Republican Friends:

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

San Joaquin Valley - U.S. agency's smelt plan 'arbitrary,' judges rules

A number of months ago, Hannity had a special on the plight of the farmers in the San Joaquin valley. The government had created a dust bowl in the valley by shutting off the water supply to preserve the delta smelt. Even after this ruling, it is not certain that the water will be turned back on.

A federal judge has ruled that a landmark 2008 environmental study laying the groundwork for controversial water cutbacks from the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta relied on faulty science.

In his much-anticipated decision released Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Oliver Wanger ordered the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to re-examine and rewrite its plan for the threatened delta smelt.

The agency's solution for shoring up the collapsing species - namely cutting water exports to California cities and farms - is "arbitrary" and "capricious," the Fresno judge wrote in his 225-page decision.

"Despite the harm visited on California water users, (the Fish and Wildlife Service) has failed to provide lawful explanations for the apparent over-appropriation of project water supplies for species protection," Wanger wrote. "The public cannot afford sloppy science and uni-directional prescriptions that ignore California's water needs."

It is unclear whether Wanger's decision will lift restrictions on water exports from the delta, in part, because wet weather this winter might provide additional flows for the smelt.

Farming and environmental groups, along with the federal and state operators of the delta pumps, are scheduled to meet Jan. 4 in Wanger's courtroom to determine how to proceed.

Read full San Francisco Chronicle article here.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Energy Equation: Practical Fact vs. Political Fiction

Sometimes you look at what the bureaucrats in Washington are spending your money on and want to cry. If what they spend was based on the profit motive, none of the projects would be undertaken. If government would stick to the basics for which it was founded and let the private sector fight it out for the ultimate profit, the nation, as a whole would be better off and technological advances would go through the roof.

In this article, calling the GM Chevrolet Volt, "the first coal-powered transport vehicle since the decline of the steam locomotive" is a gem.

Politically motivated energy solutions continue to exacerbate the problems they were supposed to counteract.

In the early 1980s, American car-makers were refining the design strategies necessary to meet the mileage requirements imposed by the government. One of the Big Three automakers' programs called for the use of a small four-cylinder engine equipped with a supercharger -- a mechanism that intermittently forces air into the combustion chamber to provide more complete combustion and greater power when needed.

Following a planning meeting with one of the key suppliers, a design engineer was asked the inevitable question: Is this going to work? He smiled and replied that although the mileage standards would be met, it might be more practical to consider all of the energy inputs that go into the manufacture of an automobile engine. He noted that the metal has to be mined or reclaimed from scrap, then smelted. Depending on the engine component, it then requires forming, casting, machining, and other operations prior to final assembly. There is also energy usage for transportation at virtually every step of the process, as well as indirect costs related to plant operation. He noted that with proper care, the typical six- or eight-cylinder engine could have a useful life that frequently exceeded 200,000 miles. Unfortunately, the supercharged smaller engines would run so hot that many would not see 100,000 miles. The end result: the improved mileage standards resulted in a net expenditure of far more energy.

If one had to pick the single best (or worst) example of the Obama administration's inability to view the big picture when it comes to energy-related matters, one could hardly find a better example than the much-vaunted and publicized Chevrolet Volt. A totally electric automobile with a 60-mile range that can be recharged in the owner's garage or at remote recharging stations, the Volt is so expensive that the government has had to create a subsidy program to incentivize buyers. Because of its zero emissions, it has been touted as the car of the future and a major step on the road to solving our environmental problems.

Once again, the reality is quite different. Most of our domestic electrical energy supply derives from coal-burning power plants, and in view of the administration's refusal to aggressively pursue nuclear power, that is likely to be the case into the short- and mid-term future. Seen in this light, the Chevrolet Volt is, in reality, a coal-powered automobile. If one were to produce a graphic illustrating how much coal would be required to generate the electricity that would power the Volt every day over the course of -- say -- a ten-year life, it would become apparent that the actual carbon footprint is huge.

Once again, the equation does not add up, and the administration that purports to be on the side of the angels when it comes to the environment has produced, through its General Motors subsidiary, the first coal-powered transport vehicle since the decline of the steam locomotive.

Until and unless the administration is willing to solicit and heed the advice and guidance of the private-sector professionals with the technical and business experience to help set practical policies, the equation is not going to balance. Instead, we will continue to overpay for impractical non-solutions.

Read full American Thinker article here.

84 million 'trusted' Mexicans to access U.S. through Security, Prosperity Partnership

My blog on May 17th The Dark Side Of Immigration has more info on the "North American Union" and "The Security and Prosperity Partnership". It appears that these programs, set in motion during the Bush years, are still going strong under the radar. Maybe it is about time our radar is adjusted to catch some of these low flying bombs that threaten our sovereignty.

Anyway, I feel safer already knowing of all the hurdles that these "trusted travelers" have to go through. With the tight security they have in Mexico, (lol), I'm sure that the drug cartels will be completely shut out of this plan.

In a further indication that the "North American Union" agenda is quietly proceeding under what remains of the Security and Prosperity Partnership initiative in the Obama administration, DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano signed, with little fanfare, an agreement in Mexico that would extend special "trusted traveler" access to the U.S. to an estimated 84 million Mexicans.

"In Mexico City, Secretary Napolitano and Mexican Ministry of the Interior Secretary Jos̩ Francisco Blake Mora signed an agreement expressing their intent to develop a Global Entry international trusted traveler pilot program between the United States and Mexico Рleveraging the success of the United States' Global Entry program to facilitate secure, legitimate travel between the two nations," announced a DHS statement Nov. 30.

The Security and Prosperity Partnership, or SPP, was announced by President George W. Bush, together with then-Mexican President Vicente Fox and then-Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin at a press conference at the end of their trilateral summit meeting in Waco, Texas, March 23, 2005, without any U.S. congressional approval as a treaty or international agreement.

Under the SPP, the U.S., Mexico and Canada organized some 20 different "shadow government" bureaucratic working groups composed of agency heads and undersecretaries in the three nations. The groups spanned a wide range of policy areas, from e-commerce, to aviation policy, to borders and immigration, trilateral travel, transportation, energy, environment, food and agriculture, health and financial services.

WND has frequently reported, beginning in 2006, that the SPP was intended to implement a stealth plan to produce a North American Union composed of the United States, Mexico and Canada.

The SPP in the administration of President Bush appeared designed to replicate the steps taken in Europe over a 50-year period following the end of World War II to transform an economic agreement under the European Common Market into a full-fledged regional government, operating as the European Union, with its own currency, the euro, functioning as the sole legitimate currency in what has become known as "the eurozone."

The concern was that under the SPP, the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, could be evolved into a regional government, a North American Union, with a regional currency, the amero, designed to replace the U.S. dollar, the Mexican peso and the Canadian dollar.

WND has reported analysts have believed the North American integration plan will proceed incrementally, largely below the radar.

Read full WorldNetDaily article here.

Darn scary article on global warming . . .

This is getting darn scary! We'd better all start getting serious
about global warming.

You've GOT to read this.

The Washington Post

The Arctic ocean is warming up, icebergs are growing scarcer and in
some places the seals are finding the water too hot, according to a
report to the Commerce Department yesterday from Consulafft, at
Bergen, Norway. Reports from fishermen, seal hunters and explorers
all point to a radical change in climate conditions and hitherto
unheard-of temperatures in the Arctic zone. Exploration expeditions
report that scarcely any ice has been met as far north as 81 degrees
29 minutes.

Soundings to a depth of 3,100 meters showed the gulf stream still very
warm. Great masses of ice have been replaced by moraines of earth and
stones, the report continued, while at many points well known glaciers
have entirely disappeared.

Very few seals and no white fish are found in the eastern Arctic,
while vast shoals of herring and smelts which have never before
ventured so far north, are being encountered in the old seal fishing

Within a few years it is predicted that due to the ice melt the sea
will rise and make most coastal cities uninhabitable.

Oops! Never mind. This report was from November 2, 1922, as reported
by the Associated Press and published in the Washington Post - 88
years ago!

Real 'Change' Begins With Education

I saw a segment on FOX yesterday about a children's book being put out by the Tea Party, with the intent of teaching our young about the Constitution, our founding fathers, freedom and liberty. With the progressive mentality so ingrained in our educational institutions, a children's book is a start, but we need a fundamental change from the current "top down" Department of Education edicts to local control of our schools.

With local control of our education system, it wourl be impossible for any central figure to indoctrinate our children on a national scale.

Dr. Thomas Sowell, in "Dismantling America," said in reference to President Obama:

"That such an administration could be elected in the first place, headed by a man whose only qualifications to be president of the United States at a dangerous time in the history of the world were rhetoric, style and symbolism — and whose animus against the values and institutions of America had been demonstrated repeatedly over a period of decades beforehand — speaks volumes about the inadequacies of our educational system and the degeneration of our culture."

Obama is by no means unique; his characteristics are shared by other Americans, but what is unique is that no other time in our history would such a person been elected president.

That says a lot about the degeneration of our culture, values, thinking abilities and acceptance of what's no less than tyranny.

As Sowell says, "Barack Obama is unlike any other President of the United States in having come from a background of decades of associations and alliances with people who resent this country and its people."

Fighting government intrusion into our lives is becoming increasingly difficult for at least two reasons.

The first reason is that educators at the primary, secondary and university levels have been successful in teaching our youngsters to despise the values of our Constitution and the founders of our nation — "those dead, old, racist white men."

Their success in that arena might explain why educators have been unable to get our youngsters to read, write and compute on a level comparable with other developed nations; they are too busy proselytizing students.

The second reason is we've become a nation of thieves, accustomed to living at the expense of one another and to accommodate that we're obliged to support tyrannical and overreaching government.

Adolf Hitler had it right when he said, "How fortunate for governments that the people they administer don't think."

Read Walter Williams article in Investors Business Daily here.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Richard Epstein: ObamaCare Is Now On The Ropes

Richard Epstein is a Constitutional law professor with a "libertarian" point of view. In his article, he discusses the legal arguments set forth by the State of Virginia and the basis for the judge's decision.

I guess we have to wait for Justice Kennedy's vote before anyone can breath a sigh of relief. As these things go, it will probably take a couple of years before the Supremes rule.

The decision of Judge Henry Hudson in Virginia v. Sebelius is no bird of passage that will easily be pushed aside as the case winds its way up to its inevitable disposition in the United States Supreme Court. The United States gave the case its best shot, and it is not likely that it will come up with a new set of arguments that will strengthen its hand in subsequent litigation.

The key successful move for Virginia was that it found a way to sidestep the well known 1942 decision of the Supreme Court in Wickard v. Filburn, which held in effect that the power to regulate commerce among the several states extended to decisions of farmers to feed their own grain to their own cows. Wickard does not pass the laugh test if the issue is whether it bears any fidelity to the original constitutional design. It was put into place for the rather ignoble purpose of making sure that the federally sponsored cartel arrangements for agriculture could be properly administered.

At this point, no District Court judge dare turn his back on the ignoble and unprincipled decision in Wickard. But Virginia did not ask for radical therapy. It rather insisted that “all” Wickard stands for is the proposition that if a farmer decides to grow wheat, he cannot feed it to his own cows if a law of Congress says otherwise. It does not say that the farmer must grow wheat in order that the federal government will have something to regulate.

It is just that line that controls this case.

The government finds itself here in a real pickle. Virginia has drawn a clear line that accounts for all the existing cases, so that no precedent has to be overruled to strike down this legislation. On the other hand, to uphold it invites the government to force me to buy everything from exercise machines to bicycles, because there is always some good that the coercive use of state authority can advance. The ironic point is that this is not a commerce clause argument as such, for in my view any state statute would be subject to the same objection even though the state has plenary police powers.

So how does it stand? If you know which way Justice Kennedy will vote, you have a pretty good shot of getting the final outcome. But if one plays the odds, this is a 12 round fight. As of today, ObamaCare is losing on rounds.

Read full Epstein here.

Judge in Va. strikes down federal health care law

With this ruling and the Republicans with the purse strings in the House, chances of rolling back ObamaCare are increasing. Here's hoping the Supremes agree with Judge Hudson.

RICHMOND, Va. – A federal judge declared the foundation of President Barack Obama's health care law unconstitutional Monday, ruling that the government cannot require Americans to purchase insurance. The case is expected to end up at the Supreme Court.

In his order, U.S. District Judge Henry E. Hudson said he will allow the law to remain in effect while appeals are heard, meaning there is unlikely to be any immediate impact on other provisions that have already taken effect. The insurance coverage mandate is not scheduled to begin until 2014.

Even so, Republicans in Congress celebrated the ruling as validation of the arguments they had made for months while the law was pending. Rep. Eric Cantor, R-Va., issued a statement urging the White House to agree to expedite a final ruling by appealing directly to the Supreme Court without first stopping at an appeals court.

Read full AP article here.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Jim DeMint: Why I Oppose the Tax Deal

This is a difficult one for the Conservative Republicans for two reasons: 1. they are currently in the minority of both Houses and have a sitting Democrat President, so they have to negotiate the best deal possible; and 2. the MSM will use the talking points of the Democrats to blame the Republicans for the tax increase that the Democrats want, if the bill does not pass.

Republicans want a simple bill that extends the Bush tax cuts and provides some additional, paid for, unemployment coverage for those out of work. Granted that many economists, and Republicans, believe that any extension of benefits will perpetuate the current problem.

The Dems have seen this bill as their "Christmas Tree" and are tacking on earmarks by the dozens. Jim DeMint, a Tea Party favorite, sees this bill as a continuation of business as usual for Congress and the Democrats, and will refuse to support the bill.

Too bad we don't have a majority of Jim DeMints in Washington D.C.

This bill does much more than simply extend tax rates.

For starters, it includes approximately $200 billion in new deficit spending and stimulus gimmicks. That’s a lot of money that will have to be borrowed from China and repaid by our children and grandchildren. If we’re going to increase spending on new programs, we must reduce other spending to pay for it.

The bill also only extends rates for two years. We don’t have a temporary economy so we shouldn’t have temporary tax rates. Individuals and businesses make decisions looking at the long-term and we’re not going to create jobs without giving people certainty as to what their taxes will be in future.

The bill also fails to extend all of the tax rates. It actually increases the death tax from its current rate of zero percent all the way up to 35 percent. One economic study shows that this tax increase alone will kill over 800,000 jobs over the next ten years.

Finally, the bill now includes dozens of earmarks for special interests, including ethanol subsidies, tax breaks for film and television producers, give aways for Puerto Rican rum manufacturers, favors for auto racing track owners, and a hand out for businesses in American Samoa.The President called Republicans “hostage takers” this week but he should be pointing his figure squarely at himself. We’ve known for years that these tax rates were going to expire but he did nothing about it until the last minute. Now Americans are being told they have to accept hundreds of billions in new spending and stimulus gimmicks, an increase the death tax, and a bunch of unnecessary earmarks or their taxes will go up.

Read full DeMint letter here.

Sarah Palin: Why I Support the Ryan Roadmap

I've posted references to Paul Ryan's Roadmap previously and find it to be a well thought out proposal for dealing with our entitlement programs. It amazes me that the President's commission ignored ObamaCare, one of the biggest threats to our economic recovery, an entitlement with no end.

What we need are term limits for Congress. Then we might find representatives that will have the guts, that Paul Ryan has, to challenge the status quo and not worry about re-election.

The commission's recommendations are a disappointment. We need a better plan to build on these conclusions with common-sense reforms to tackle our long-term funding crisis in a sustainable way.

In my view, a better plan is the Roadmap for America's Future produced by Rep. Paul Ryan (R., Wisc.). The Roadmap offers a reliable path to long-term solvency for our entitlement programs, and it does so by encouraging personal responsibility and independence.

On health care, it would replace ObamaCare with a new system in which people are given greater control over their own health-care spending. It achieves this partly through creating medical savings accounts and a new health-care tax credit—the only tax credit that would be left in a radically simplified new income tax system that people can opt into if they wish.

The Roadmap would also replace our high and anticompetitive corporate income tax with a business consumption tax of just 8.5%. The overall tax burden would be limited to 19% of GDP (compared to 21% under the deficit commission's proposals). Beyond that, Rep. Ryan proposes fundamental reform of Medicare for those under 55 by turning the current benefit into a voucher with which people can purchase their own care.

On Social Security, as with Medicare, the Roadmap honors our commitments to those who are already receiving benefits by guaranteeing all existing rights to people over the age of 55. Those below that age are offered a choice: They can remain in the traditional government-run system or direct a portion of their payroll taxes to personal accounts, owned by them, managed by the Social Security Administration and guaranteed by the federal government. Under the Roadmap's proposals, they can pass these savings onto their heirs. The current Medicaid system, the majority of which is paid for by the federal government but administered by the states, would be replaced by a block-grant system that would reward economizing states.

Together these reforms help to secure our entitlement programs for the 21st century. According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the Roadmap would lead to lower deficits and a much lower federal debt.

Let's not settle for the big-government status quo, which is what the president's commission offers. We owe it to our children and grandchildren to make these tough decisions so that they might inherit a prosperous and strong America like the one we were given.

Read full WSJ article here.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Cancun Is Hosting The U.N. Conference On Man-made Climate Change — Amid Record Cold Temperatures

Last February, the Commerce Department had to cancel their announcement on global warming in Washington D.C. due to a record snowfall. I guess the "Gore" enthusiasts thought they had a sure thing when they went to Cancun for their summit.

Since the rise in temperature has flat-lined in the face of increasing CO2, maybe, just maybe, the prior rise is just a normal cyclical phenomenon or a common reaction to sunspots. After all, even the most zealous fanatics have changed their terminology from "Global Warming" to "Climate Change". Wonder what they called it during the "Medieval Warm Period" or the "Little Ice Ages" that man has experienced.

For many zealots, it is all about stemming population growth to save the environment, but for those like Gore, it is all about $$$$$$$.

The irony: As negotiators from nearly 200 countries met in Cancun to strategize ways to keep the planet from getting hotter, the temperature in the seaside Mexican city plunged to a 100-year record low of 54° F.

Climate-change skeptics are gleefully calling Cancun's weather the latest example of the "Gore Effect" — a plunge in temperature they say occurs wherever former Vice President Al Gore, now a Nobel Prize-winning environmental activist, makes a speech about the climate. Although Gore is not scheduled to speak in Cancun, "it could be that the Gore Effect has announced his secret arrival," jokes former NASA scientist Roy W. Spencer.

Read the full The Week articlehere.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

First Commercial Space Craft Launch Signals New Space Race

The odds were against them but SpaceX successfully launched and recovered the first commercially developed spacecraft in the world, opening up the race to space that has languished since the Russians launched Sputnik 1 in October,1957.

It is interesting to note that SpaceX solved the problem of cracked nozzles in two days, much faster than NASA, a US Government operation, has ever done. Of course some in Congress believe this was just luck and not to be relied on. Government always does things better and safer. Yeah! Sure!

This is a dangerous undertaking and accidents will happen, but what do you want to bet that space exploration in the next 53 years will be exponentially greater now that government is getting out of the way.

The world's first commercially developed space capsule was successfully launched into orbit and then recovered at sea Wednesday, signaling a historic move toward an era of privately operated rockets and spacecraft.

Barely eight years after Internet entrepreneur Elon Musk opened makeshift offices in suburban Los Angeles, his company accomplished something that none of the world's aerospace giants—and so far only five national space progams—have been able to achieve.

Closely held Space Exploration Technologies Corp. recovered its unmanned Dragon capsule after more than three hours of a seemingly problem-free demonstration flight, despite immense technical hurdles that many space experts and established contractors believed would take much longer to overcome.

Blasted 180 miles above the Earth from Cape Canaveral, Fla., by SpaceX's own nine-engine, 18-story Falcon 9 rocket, Dragon survived the rigors of the launch and then used its thrusters to precisely maneuver out of low-earth orbit.

The Apollo-like capsule—poised to carry cargo and perhaps eventually U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station—reached roughly 17,000 miles per hour before surviving a fiery re-entry and landing gently in the Pacific.

Dragon came close to its designated landing spot off the coast of Mexico, according to company officials, who had worried that flawless deployment and operation of it three main parachutes, each measuring 116 feet, could be the trickiest part of the mission.

Mr. Musk told reporters Wednesday "we are definitely going to be pushing the technology beyond what you have seen here," including changes to allow the Dragon capsule to land on the ground, refuel and take off again.

SpaceX's critics in industry and on Capitol Hill, however, counter it would be too risky to rely on fledgling rockets and start-up companies to access the space station and take astronauts into orbit and later deeper into space.

Read full WSJ article here.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Importance Of Property Rights And The Rule Of Law

I ran across this article by John Stossel that discusses the rule of law and the importance of property rights in the development of wealth.

Excerpt from John Stossel's: Why Do The Poor Stay Poor?:
Of the 6 billion people on Earth, 2 billion try to survive on a few dollars a day. They don't build businesses, or if they do, they don't expand them. Unlike people in the United States, Europe and Asian countries like Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, etc., they don't lift themselves out of poverty. Why not? What's the difference between them and us? Hernando de Soto taught me that the biggest difference may be property rights.

I first met de Soto maybe 15 years ago. It was at one of those lunches where people sit around wondering how to end poverty. I go to these things because it bugs me that much of the world hasn't yet figured out what gave us Americans the power to prosper.

I go, but I'm skeptical. There sits de Soto, president of the Institute for Liberty and Democracy in Peru, and he starts pulling pictures out showing slum dwellings built on top of each other. I wondered what they meant.

As de Soto explained: "These pictures show that roughly 4 billion people in the world actually build their homes and own their businesses outside the legal system. ... Because of the lack of rule of law (and) the definition of who owns what, and because they don't have addresses, they can't get credit (for investment loans)."

They don't have addresses?

"To get an address, somebody's got to recognize that that's where you live. That means ... you've got a mailing address. ... When you make a deal with someone, you can be identified. But until property is defined by law, people can't ... specialize and create wealth. The day they get title (is) the day that the businesses in their homes, the sewing machines, the cotton gins, the car repair shop finally gets recognized. They can start expanding."

That's the road to prosperity. But first they need to be recognized by someone in local authority who says, "This is yours." They need the rule of law. But many places in the developing world barely have law.

De Soto says we've forgotten what made us prosperous. "But (leaders in the developing world) see that they're pot-poor relative to your wealth." They are beginning to grasp the importance of private property.

Let's hope we haven't forgotten what they are beginning to learn.

Read Stossel's full article here.

The CATO Institute's version of Hernando de Soto's Biography ends with this statement:

Delivering formal property rights to the poor can bring them out of the sway of demagogues and into the extended order of the modern global economy. "Are we going to make [capitalism] inclusive and start breaking the monopoly of the left on the poor and showing that the system can be geared to them as well?" That's de Soto's challenge and his life's work.

Liberalism has been eroding our rights for decades, but the Tea Party revolution has given new life to our founding fathers belief in individual freedom and property rights. Perhaps it is not too late too re-invigorate our economy and the American dream for all.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Abraham Lincoln Quotes

Tax Deal Suggests New Path for Obama

The results of the November elections were not lost on President Obama. If it were not for that election, this agreement would not have been possible. Now we have to hope that the congressional Democrats also got the message.

The article mentions the cost of the program to be similar to the cost of the stimulus plan. The difference is that the money will be kept in the hands of the people and not in bureaucratic slush funds used for political survival. In addition, only Democrats/Liberals would think that letting working people keep their hard earned income, would be a cost to the nation.

President Obama announced a tentative deal with Congressional Republicans on Monday to extend the Bush-era tax cuts at all income levels for two years as part of a package that would also keep benefits flowing to the long-term unemployed, cut payroll taxes for all workers for a year and take other steps to bolster the economy.

The deal appeared to resolve the first major standoff since the midterm elections between the White House and newly empowered Republicans on Capitol Hill.

It would reduce the 6.2 percent Social Security payroll tax on all wage earners by two percentage points for one year, putting more money in the paychecks of workers.

For a family earning $50,000 a year, it would amount to a savings of $1,000. For a worker slated to pay the maximum tax, $6,621.60 on income of $106,800 or more in 2011, the cut would mean a savings of $2,136.

That would replace the central tax break for middle-and low-income Americans in last year’s economic stimulus measure, White House officials said.

The deal would also continue a college-tuition tax credit for some families, expand the earned-income tax credit and allow businesses to write off the cost of certain equipment purchases.

The top rate of 15 percent on capital gains and dividends would remain in place for two years, and the alternative minimum tax would be adjusted so that as many as 21 million households would not be hit by it.

In addition, the agreement provides for a 13-month extension of jobless aid for the long-term unemployed.

In addition to dropping his opposition to any extension of the current income tax rates on income above $250,000 for couples and $200,000 for individuals, he agreed to a deal on the federal estate tax that infuriated many Democrats.

The deal would ultimately set an exemption of $5 million per person and a maximum rate of 35 percent — a higher exemption and far lower rate than many Democrats wanted.

Read the full NYT article here.

Shanghai Students Top World Rankings on Math Test; U.S. Teans Ranked 25th

25th in math, 17th in science, and 14th in reading shows that the U.S. is falling behind the rest of the world in educating its young. The article cites some of the problem is caused by our lenient immigration policies, where most of the countries ahead of the U.S. have a more homogeneous population.

The one item I noticed was the recommendation for more local autonomy in selecting the curriculum. Perhaps getting rid of teachers unions and the Department of Education, along with enforcement of our immigration laws would go a long way in solving this problem.

Fifteen-year-olds in the U.S. ranked 25th among peers from 34 countries on a math test and scored in the middle in science and reading, while China’s Shanghai topped the charts, raising concern that the U.S. isn’t prepared to succeed in the global economy.

The Paris-based Organization of Economic Cooperation & Development, which represents 34 countries, today released the 2009 Program for International Student Assessment. For the first time, the test broke out the performance of China’s Shanghai region, which topped every country in all academic categories. The U.S. government considers the test one of the most comprehensive measures of international achievement.

The results show that U.S. students must improve to compete in a global economy, Education Secretary Arne Duncan said yesterday in a telephone interview. President Barack Obama’s administration is promoting national curriculum standards and a revamping of teacher pay that stresses performance rather than credentials and seniority.

“The brutal fact here is there are many countries that are far ahead of us and improving more rapidly than we are,” Duncan said. “This should be a massive wake-up call to the entire country.”

The success of top-scoring education systems holds lessons for U.S. policy, according to the report. Successful countries provide comparable opportunities to all students regardless of wealth, offer autonomy to individual schools in terms of curriculum and prioritize teacher pay over smaller classes, according to the report.

Read full Bloomberg News article here.

Monday, December 6, 2010

No teachers, no homework: Students set own agenda at private school in Davie

Based on information readily available on the internet, children in the U.S. are falling behind many countries when it comes to the effectiveness of our education system. Much of this can be blamed on the centralization of decision making at the Federal level and also control of our local systems by the teachers' unions that care more about their union dues than education results.

Throughout the country, unique and experimental methods of teaching are popping up in the strangest places. This one is in Florida. It's worth a test.

"In traditional schools there are so many students that kids are not allowed to talk to each other during their school day,'' said staffer Idelma Quintana, whose son attends the school. "Our kids here are learning how to get along with other kids and negotiate conflict.''

As public schools adopt tougher standards and emphasize standardized tests, alternative schools have become more popular.

"The regular public school system and even some private schools tend to operate under the paradigm that kids are lazy and need to be forced to learn,'' said Jerry Mintz, director of the New York-based Alternative Education Resource Organization. "We take a diametrically different approach that starts with the assumption that kids are natural learners."

Veezie Bowden, whose 4-year-old son Julian attends the school, said she thought he'd spend most of his day playing. Instead he developed an interest in writing after mingling with his peers.

She admits she had reservations in the beginning.

"It's not easy grappling with the idea that your kid is not going to get a traditional high school diploma or take the FCAT,'' said Bowden. "But at the end of the day, I saw what graduates of Sudbury schools were doing with their lives. They were eloquent, responsible and mature.

"My feeling was that if I could have that for my children, all of the other stuff doesn't matter.''

Read full Sun Sentinel article here.

Department Of Homeland Security: 'IF YOU SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING'

I have been waiting to hear something from Janet Napolitano that I agree with and amazingly, here it is. Our law enforcement agencies are not able to, or should they be, able to monitor everyone or every place. As long as we do not create an army of "brown shirts", a well informed and alert populace is the best way to prevent terrorism. This program has merit.

“Homeland security starts with hometown security, and each of us plays a critical role in keeping our country and communities safe,” said Secretary Napolitano. “I applaud Walmart for joining the ‘If You See Something, Say Something’ campaign. This partnership will help millions of shoppers across the nation identify and report indicators of terrorism, crime and other threats to law enforcement authorities.”

The “If You See Something, Say Something” campaign—originally implemented by New York City’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority and funded, in part, by $13 million from DHS’ Transit Security Grant Program—is a simple and effective program to engage the public and key frontline employees to identify and report indicators of terrorism, crime and other threats to the proper transportation and law enforcement authorities.

List of facilities 'vital to US security' leaked

Most of what I have read that has been disseminated by Wikileaks has been fairly ho hum, and, I believe, should not have been given the classifications that prevented them from becoming available to the public. The way our government manipulates its own citizens is indefensible.

However, this list of vital facilities contains, I am sure, information that Al-Qaeda can use to terrorize the World, and, as Newt says, its release borders on treason.

In February 2009 the State Department asked all US missions abroad to list all installations whose loss could critically affect US national security.

The list includes pipelines, communication and transport hubs.

Several UK sites are listed, including cable locations, satellite sites and BAE Systems plants.

BBC diplomatic correspondent Jonathan Marcus says this is probably the most controversial document yet from the Wikileaks organisation.

Read full BBC News article here.

Senator Claire McCaskill - In Essence - Government Owns Your Income

This clip from FOX News really got to me. The interview with Senator Claire McCaskill, a Missouri Democrat, shows how out of touch the Democrats are. McCaskill believes that the vote on extension of the Bush tax reduction is voting to "give money to the rich". The last time I looked, by not extending the Bush tax reduction, the Government is stealing the hard earned rewards for their labor, of the rich, the small businesses and everyone who has lost income and jobs due to overreaching government redistribution programs and deficit spending.

As much as McCaskill is trying to redefine herself for her reelection campaign in 2012, this one statement tells it all. In her mind, the government owns you and everything around you and they can do what they want with you, your family, your income and your possessions.

Dr. Tom Coburn Speaks To Debt Commission

Saturday, December 4, 2010

FCC crosses the Rubicon into online regulation

Another American freedom being attacked by the Obamaistas. Luckily this one has a chance of being defeated if Congress holds fast on their prior positions.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is poised to add the Internet to its portfolio of regulated industries. The agency's chairman, Julius Genachowski, announced Wednesday that he circulated draft rules he says will "preserve the freedom and openness of the Internet." No statement could better reflect the gulf between the rhetoric and the reality of Obama administration policies.

With a straight face, Mr. Genachowski suggested that government red tape will increase the "freedom" of online services that have flourished because bureaucratic busybodies have been blocked from tinkering with the Web. Ordinarily, it would be appropriate at this point to supply an example from the proposed regulations illustrating the problem. Mr. Genachowski's draft document has over 550 footnotes and is stamped "non-public, for internal use only" to ensure nobody outside the agency sees it until the rules are approved in a scheduled Dec. 21 vote. So much for "openness."

Bipartisan majorities in Congress have insisted on maintaining a hands-off policy. A federal appeals court confirmed this in April by striking down the FCC's last attempt in this arena. "That was sort of like the quarterback being sacked for a 20-yard loss," FCC Commissioner Robert M. McDowell told The Washington Times. "And now the team is about to run the exact same play. ... In order for the FCC to do this, it needs for Congress to give it explicit statutory authority to do so."

Freedom and openness should continue to be the governing principles of the Internet. That's why Mr. Genachowski's proposal should be rejected and Congress should make it even more clear that the FCC should stop trying to expand its regulatory empire.

Read Washington Times article here.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Does God Exist? - Albert Einstein?

I looked this up on Snopes and found that they categorized this video as a hoax. But in reading their analysis, I found that they have absolutely no proof for their conclusion. Their conclusion is based on the fact that Einstein has been used in a number of other hoaxes, so this must be a hoax also. Maybe so, maybe not, but you do know which side of the liberal/conservative spectrum Snope's "researchers" come from.

Anyway, this child's reasoning trumped that of the atheist professor's.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

2 House ethics attorneys suspended

It appears that Maxine Waters is hoping the reason for the suspensions is leaks to the press. Time will tell whether it is leaks or, what this article indicates, that there is more to Maxine than the "Democrat powers that be" want to investigate.

Two former federal prosecutors who were suspended from the House ethics committee -- both of whom previously worked for Republican appointed judges -- reportedly kept probing allegations against Rep. Maxine Waters even after the subcommittee recommended the California Democrat be tried for ethics violations.

Cindy Morgan Kim and Stacy Sovereign apparently ruffled feathers by continuing to investigate Waters after the investigative subcommittee made its recommendations in August, several Republican sources on Capitol Hill told the Washington Post.

"They were pushing too hard" to broaden the investigation, one Republican staff aide told the newspaper. Kim and Sovereign circulated a memo supporting the postponement of the trial and imploring the committee to investigate further, the source said.

Kim and Sovereign were placed on administrative leave on Nov. 19, the same day that the panel announced the Waters trial had been delayed.
Read full Ryan J. Reilly article here.

Read POLITICO article here

Why The Gun Is Civilization. By Marko Kloos

Human beings only have two ways to deal with one another: reason and force. If you want me to do something for you, you have a choice of either convincing me via argument, or force me to do your bidding under threat of force. Every human interaction falls into one of those two categories, without exception. Reason or force, that’s it.

In a truly moral and civilized society, people exclusively interact through persuasion. Force has no place as a valid method of social interaction, and the only thing that removes force from the menu is the personal firearm, as paradoxical as it may sound to some.

When I carry a gun, you cannot deal with me by force. You have to use reason and try to persuade me, because I have a way to negate your threat or employment of force. The gun is the only personal weapon that puts a 100-pound woman on equal footing with a 220-pound mugger, a 75-year old retiree on equal footing with a 19-year old gangbanger, and a single gay guy on equal footing with a carload of drunk guys with baseball bats. The gun removes the disparity in physical strength, size, or numbers between a potential attacker and a defender.

There are plenty of people who consider the gun as the source of bad force equations. These are the people who think that we’d be more civilized if all guns were removed from society, because a firearm makes it easier for a mugger to do his job. That, of course, is only true if the mugger’s potential victims are mostly disarmed either by choice or by legislative fiat–it has no validity when most of a mugger’s potential marks are armed. People who argue for the banning of arms ask for automatic rule by the young, the strong, and the many, and that’s the exact opposite of a civilized society. A mugger, even an armed one, can only make a successful living in a society where the state has granted him a force monopoly.

Then there’s the argument that the gun makes confrontations lethal that otherwise would only result in injury. This argument is fallacious in several ways. Without guns involved, confrontations are won by the physically superior party inflicting overwhelming injury on the loser. People who think that fists, bats, sticks, or stones don’t constitute lethal force watch too much TV, where people take beatings and come out of it with a bloody lip at worst. The fact that the gun makes lethal force easier works solely in favor of the weaker defender, not the stronger attacker. If both are armed, the field is level. The gun is the only weapon that’s as lethal in the hands of an octogenarian as it is in the hands of a weightlifter. It simply wouldn’t work as well as a force equalizer if it wasn’t both lethal and easily employable.

When I carry a gun, I don’t do so because I am looking for a fight, but because I’m looking to be left alone. The gun at my side means that I cannot be forced, only persuaded. I don’t carry it because I’m afraid, but because it enables me to be unafraid. It doesn’t limit the actions of those who would interact with me through reason, only the actions of those who would do so by force. It removes force from the equation…and that’s why carrying a gun is a civilized act.

Go to the author's website here.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

No More Sermons at the Soup Kitchen

Now we have an Interagency Working Group in charge of making sure the unfortunates dining at church soup kitchens don't hear sermons. It seems to me that those in need of food also could use a little hope. A religious sermon may be just the message they need.

More indication that Obama is just another Christian hating Muslim. Just supposition.

WASHINGTON (CN) - Faith-based organizations may no longer conduct worship services or proselytize while providing social programs funded with federal money. President Obama has amended a 2002 Executive Order from President George W. Bush that allowed faith-based social programs to get federal aid.

Bush's order allowed religious services to be conducted at the same time and in the same place as the social program offered, so long as the service itself was not supported by the money allocated to the social program.

Thus, visitors to a soup kitchen run by a church might hear a sermon while getting their food.

President Obama's amendment mandates separation of the two activities, in time or place, and forbids making participation in a religious activity a requirement for receiving the benefits of the federally funded program.

The amendments also require the government to "monitor and enforce standards regarding the relationship between religion and government in ways that avoid excessive entanglement between religious bodies and governmental entities."

Religious organizations will have to refer beneficiaries of federally funded programs who object to the religious character of the program provider to an alternative provider within a "reasonable period of time."

To enforce the new requirements, the amendment creates the Interagency Working Group on Faith-Based and Other Neighborhood Partnerships, which is charged with writing rules to implement the changes across the government and all organizations that receive federal funding.

Read full article here.

Food Court Christmas Flash Mob

Victims of Obamacare - Coverage For The "Young" At Risk

This is what you get when you have a President and administration that has no experience in business and who listen to academics and their failed policy schemes to manage the economy. Thinking you can add coverage without increasing cost is absolute stupidity.

Coverage of 26 year old "children" on parent's policies is expensive for an insurance company and must be adjusted in the rates. When I went to college, there was a relatively inexpensive policy offered by the university. Basically, I was on my own insurance wise. I guess this change is to cover those "children" who don't want to work until 4 years out of college or until the unconstitutional "mandatory" coverage takes effect.

Now In this example, even the Democrat base, the SEIU employees are being affected.

The President cares not for our capitalistic system that has flourished with profit as the main motivation. He believes all profits belong to the government and investors, all of which he considers "rich" do not deserve the fruits of their labors, even though many of those investments are in retirement plans of non-union retirees.

It's time for America's youth to buckle up and take a rough ride on Reality Highway. For the past two years, President Obama has promised our children the moon, stars, rainbows, unicorns and universal health care for all. But the White House Santa's cradle-to-grave entitlement mandates are a spectacularly predictable bust.

Don't take it from me. Take it from Obamacare's own biggest cheerleaders.

Late last month, the Service Employees International Union informed dues-paying members of its behemoth 1199 affiliate in New York that it was dropping its health care coverage for children. That's right. A radical leftist union, not an evil Republican corporation, is abandoning the young 'uns to cut costs.

More than 30,000 low-wage families will be affected, according to The Wall Street Journal. Who's to blame? SEIU 1199 benefits manager Mitra Behroozi singled out oppressive new state and federal regulations, including the much-ballyhooed Obamacare rule forcing insurers to cover dependents well into their 20s.

How far we've come from the halcyon moment when President Obama rallied young college students at George Mason University in Virginia in March. To wild applause, he pledged: "If you buy a new plan, there won't be lifetime or restrictive annual limits on the amount of care you receive from your insurance companies. (Applause.) And by the way, to all the young people here today, starting this year if you don't have insurance, all new plans will allow you to stay on your parents' plan until you are 26 years old. (Applause.)"

Cue bitter laughter here. As I reported two weeks ago, more than 111 unions (including two SEIU affiliates), companies and insurers have now secured federal waivers to escape the first provision Obama mentioned to the George Mason University students. And more financially strapped union affiliates like SEIU 1199 will undoubtedly be canceling children's coverage to escape the costs tied to Obama's second vow.

For the kiddie human shields who helped the Democrats dig their own ditch, reality bites. Live and learn.

Read full Michelle Malkin article here.