Saturday, April 30, 2011

Harry Alford, National Black Chamber of Commerce Interview w/Laura Ingraham

Smooth: McConnell Exploits Reid's Budget Vote Theatrics - Touche'

Being in the majority in the Senate, Reid is calling the shots and has chosen to play politics rather than help solve the crises that our economy is now in. Republicans, in the minority, have little power in bringing bills to a vote, but McConnell is able to call for a vote on the President's budget, which will be a disaster for the Democrats. Let's see how Reid counters.

Reid is playing politics:

The idea behind Reid's plan is to force Senate Republicans to vote on the measure, which could put incumbents facing tough reelections on the spot.

The Ryan budget is not expected to pass the Senate, which is controlled by Democrats.
"I would hope they do," Reid said when asked if he thinks the Senate will reject the plan. "It would be one of the worst things to happen to this country if that came into effect."

That clever dog! Reid is going to force Senate Republicans -- very few of whom actually face tough re-elections -- to vote on a budget that the American people...well, don't really mind. Not to be outdone, Reid's Republican counterpart, Sen. Mitch McConnell, has orchestrated a political counter-punch to Reid's shenanigans. Brilliant:

A day after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) put Republicans on the spot by saying he will bring the House Republicans’ budget proposal up for a vote, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) turned the tables by exercising his legislative prerogative to call for a vote on President Barack Obama’s budget.

The two votes amount to legislative brinkmanship by both party leaders. Mr. Reid wants to put Republicans on record supporting legislation authored by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R., Wis.) that would eventually transform Medicare and Medicaid. Mr. McConnell, meanwhile, wants to force Democrats to vote on a plan that rolls back Bush-era tax cuts for people who make more than $250,000 and ignores many of the long-term costs driving the deficit.

“I understand that the Majority Leader would like to have a vote on the House-passed Ryan budget and we will,” Mr. McConnell said in a statement. “But we’ll have a vote on the President’s budget at the same time. Since there is no Democrat budget in the Senate, we’ll give our colleagues an opportunity to stand with the President in failing to address the problems facing our nation while calling for trillions in new spending, massive new debt and higher taxes on American energy, families and small businesses across the country.”

Translation: "Alright chumps, if you're going to pull a stunt that forces us to vote on a controversial but serious budget plan -- without even pretending to introduce your own alternative -- we'll force you to vote on Barack Obama's toxic budget proposal that raises taxes, does nothing to address long-term drivers of our debt, and adds $9.5 Trillion of red ink to the nation's bottom line. Let's do this thing!"

Read full article here.

The Obama doctrine: Leading from behind

It is obvious that Obama's world view is not that of the majority of Americans. Leading from behind, as one of Obama's advisors described his "doctrine", is a joke and just an excuse for "I don't have a clue what to do". The only question is, how much damage to our global image can he do before he leaves office? Two more years, we may be able to recover. Six more years and we will be in deep doo-doo.

Amazing. This is why Obama is deliberately diminishing American presence, standing and leadership in the world?

Take proposition one: We must “lead from behind” because U.S. relative power is declining. Even if you accept the premise, it’s a complete non sequitur. What does China’s rising GDP have to do with American buck-passing on Libya, misjudging Iran, appeasing Syria?

True, China is rising. But first, it is the only power of any significance rising militarily relative to us. Russia is recovering from levels of military strength so low that it barely registers globally. And European power is in true decline (see Europe’s performance — excepting the British — in Afghanistan and its current misadventures in Libya).

And second, the challenge of a rising Chinese military is still exclusively regional. It would affect a war over Taiwan. It has zero effect on anything significantly beyond China’s coast. China has no blue-water navy. It has no foreign bases. It cannot project power globally. It might in the future — but by what logic should that paralyze us today?

Proposition two: We must lead from behind because we are reviled. Pray tell, when were we not? During Vietnam? Or earlier, under Eisenhower? When his vice president was sent on a goodwill trip to Latin America, he was spat upon and so threatened by the crowds that he had to cut short his trip. Or maybe later, under the blessed Reagan? The Reagan years were marked by vast demonstrations in the capitals of our closest allies denouncing America as a warmongering menace taking the world into nuclear winter.

“Obama came of age politically,” explains Lizza, “during the post-Cold War era, a time when America’s unmatched power created widespread resentment.” But the world did not begin with the coming to consciousness of Barack Obama. Cold War resentments ran just as deep.

Obama thinks anti-Americanism is a verdict on America’s fitness for leadership. I would suggest that “leading from behind” is a verdict on Obama’s fitness for leadership.

Leading from behind is not leading. It is abdicating. It is also an oxymoron. Yet a sympathetic journalist, channeling an Obama adviser, elevates it to a doctrine. The president is no doubt flattered. The rest of us are merely stunned.

Read full Krauthammer opinion piece here.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Tornadoes: Activists Are Clueless, AFP Blames Normal Climate Cycles

Democrats are blaming the tornadoes on southern Republicans for voting against climate bills. MSM is blaming it on global warming. Fact is that the global warming "scientist" activists are having a hard time finding the actual warming that their models are forecasting.

The French news agency AFP concedes that it is just normal climate cycles associated with the cooling of the Pacific Ocean's La Nina.

It is ironic that Think Progress quotes Kevin Trenberth for the proposition that all weather events--heat, cold, rain, drought, wind, no wind, you name it--should be presumed to be "affected by global warming." Trenberth is the very pseudo-scientist who admitted that he and his fellow alarmists have no idea what actually causes the weather, which usually fails to conform to the alarmists' predictions. Trenberth wrote, in one of the most famous Climategate emails:

Well I have my own article on where the heck is global warming? We are asking that here in Boulder where we have broken records the past two days for the coldest days on record. We had 4 inches of snow. The high the last 2 days was below 30F and the normal is 69F, and it smashed the previous records for these days by 10F. The low was about 18F and also a record low, well below the previous record low. This is January weather (see the Rockies baseball playoff game was canceled on saturday and then played last night in below freezing weather). ...

The fact is that we can't account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can't. The CERES data published in the August BAMS 09 supplement on 2008 shows there should be even more warming: but the data are surely wrong. Our observing system is inadequate.

Got that? The climate isn't behaving as Trenberth and his fellow alarmists predicted; they have no idea why; the alarmists' inability to explain observed weather patterns is a "travesty;" and the data the alarmists rely on is "surely wrong" because their "observing system is inadequate." What's the solution? No problem--just ignore the data and presume that "all weather events are affected by global warming." Sure, that works--if you are a political activist, rather than a scientist.

The AFP offered a saner assessment of this week's tragic storms: "Tornadoes whipped up by wind, not climate."

US meteorologists warned Thursday it would be a mistake to blame climate change for a seeming increase in tornadoes in the wake of deadly storms that have ripped through the US south.

"If you look at the past 60 years of data, the number of tornadoes is increasing significantly, but it's agreed upon by the tornado community that it's not a real increase," said Grady Dixon, assistant professor of meteorology and climatology at Mississippi State University.

"It's having to do with better (weather tracking) technology, more population, the fact that the population is better educated and more aware. So we're seeing them more often," Dixon said.

But he said it would be "a terrible mistake" to relate the up-tick to climate change. ...

Craig Fugate, administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), also dismissed Thursday climate change as a factor in the deadly tornadoes: "Actually what we're seeing is springtime," he said. ...

[T]he stronger-than-usual tornadoes affecting the southern states were actually predicted from examining the planet's climatological patterns, specifically those related to the La Nina phenomenon.

"We knew it was going to be a big tornado year," he said. But the key to that tip-off was unrelated to climate change: "It is related to the natural fluctuations of the planet."

Read Power Line article here.

Pray For Our Nation

Click here for The Lords Prayer.

Global-warming zealots to ban ice makers

It's beginning to sound a lot like Red China here in the good 'ole' USA. Well, back to the old ice cube trays. They come in many shapes and sizes. Won't it be fun to see a cube in the shape of your 'favorite' liberal politician just melt away.

Ice makers are the latest target in the left’s ongoing war against the conveniences of modern life. Earlier this month, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) issued a report that may condemn this essential household item to the contraband list that already includes functional light bulbs, toilets, washing machines and showerheads.

Those looking for an easy way to cool down their drinks with ice cubes are guilty of increasing their refrigerator’s energy consumption by about 12 to 20 percent. That’s unacceptable to global-warming alarmists at the Department of Energy (DOE) who are hard at work finalizing regulatory standards for the fridge. The proposed changes will increase prices by an estimated $2 billion per year, but DOE justifies this added expense by claiming consumers would save $37 in electricity costs over the lifetime of a typical side-by-side.

Paying more up front to obtain paltry energy savings might appeal to some consumers. Others struggling to make ends meet might not see it as such a bargain. Liberals, however, have no interest in letting the public decide what types of products suit their particular needs. Dishonest bureaucrats impose their one-size-fits-all choice on Americans while simultaneously denying they regulate consumer behavior or ban items like light bulbs, showerheads and refrigerators. “I’m pro-choice on bulbs,” claimed Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency Kathleen Hogan in congressional testimony last month. “I really do not believe that the appliance standards end up restricting personal choice.”

Yet the likes of Ms. Hogan pull popular products off store shelves and replace them with inferior - but government-sanctioned - products. They do so by forcing appliance manufacturers to file statements confirming that their products meet every aspect of the regulations, that the products have been tested according to government rules and that the manufacturer “is aware of the penalties” involved. Distributing a product that fails to meet with Ms. Hogan’s approval carries a typical fine of $7,300 per item. That adds up quickly. Last year, DOE accused a company of producing a showerhead that worked a little bit too well. For this “crime,” DOE demanded payment of $1.9 million and destruction of this highly effective product.

Read The Washington Times editorial here.

Tea Party Effect - More Democrats threaten to vote against raising borrowing limit

Expect most of the Democrats that are from Red States and other competitive states to talk a good game of deficit and spending reductions. If it is determined that their vote is not needed by the Democrat leaders, they will vote with the Republicans on this issue. It remains to be seen what they will do if theirs is the pivotal vote.

Neither the Democrats nor the Republicans can afford to ignore the Tea Party.

A growing number of Democrats are threatening to defy the White House over the national debt, joining Republican calls for deficit cuts as a requirement for consenting to lift the country’s borrowing limit.

The tension is the latest illustration of how the tea-party-infused GOP is driving the debate in Washington over federal spending. And it shows how the debt issue is testing the Obama administration’s clout as Democrats, particularly those from politically competitive states, resist White House arguments against setting conditions on legislation to raise the debt ceiling.

Polls show why the debt vote is so difficult for Democrats, who next year are expected to face an uphill battle to retain their narrow Senate majority in an election likely to focus heavily on spending issues.

Just 16 percent of Americans favor lifting the debt ceiling, according to a Wall Street Journal/NBC survey published this month. Nearly six in 10 independents opposed it. Democrats were divided, with nearly half saying they did not know enough to have an opinion.

“If you’re in a red state, if you’re going to be perceived as a moderate, you want to be able to say that you’re for cutting spending,” said Democratic strategist J.B. Poersch, former executive director of the party’s Senate campaign committee.

Manchin kicked off a statewide tour this week by announcing his support for a GOP-backed bill to impose spending caps. The measure is viewed by some lawmakers as a possible point of compromise in the debt-limit debate.

He has been asking audiences for a show of hands to test support for lifting the borrowing cap, with overwhelming numbers expressing opposition.

“You have to pay your debt, but when you find yourself in a hole, you ought to stop digging,” Manchin said Thursday in a statement from his office.

Read full Washington Post article here.

Tornado Outbreaks: 1974 Global Cooling? - 2011 Global Warming?

I read a couple of articles today blaming the tornado outbreak on global warming. O'Reilly had an expert on that likened it to an outbreak in 1974 and blamed it on Pacific Ocean cooling or the La Nina effect.

The following references relate to 1974. The first talks about the tornado outbreak in 1974. The second shows that the fear had been global cooling with forecasts for warming in the future.

I would go with the sunspot theory rather than anything man made.

Read about the previous greatest tornado outbreak in 1974 here.

Read about global cooling in 1974, the mantra then of the environmental extremists, here.

White House Insider: Obama’s West Wing Civil War

The current White House Insider report concentrates on the Chief of Staff, Bill Daley, challenging Valerie Jarrett's authority in the White House. The implications are that Daley is Chicago's tough guy trying to rein in an out of control Jarrett and Obama. Interesting reading.

All new revelations from our D.C. Insider of an Obama White House in chaos, as Bill Daley does battle with Valerie Jarrett for control of the West Wing.

But let’s stick with what happened a few weeks back in the White House that has people talking, and the donors pushing the big concerned button once again.

Now I know I told you that there was a bit of a control fight between Daley and Jarrett, right? I know it’s been a while but I seem to recall that. Well this fight has broke out into all out war between these two. And Jarrett is getting her ass kicked. That’s not to say she won’t claw her way back, she’s got the confidence of the First Lady and the president…but those two are learning they aren’t calling the shots anymore. Too much at stake to allow those two elitist morons to just -expletive- it up.

(Interrupts) What do you mean by that. Sorry to break in there, but please explain what you mean?

A: What I mean is that Barack and Michelle Obama…it was communicated to them in no uncertain terms that they are to follow directions. Every president, as powerful as that position is, can have their chain jerked when a situation requires. That chain has been jerked very hard this past month. Very hard. I don’t want to go into that right now though. I want to tell you about Jarrett and Daley. That story is going to legitimize this with the ones who I want to know. So I’m going back to that.

Daley has quietly been asserting himself in Obama’s White House. They may not like it, but they don’t have a choice. Daley is Chicago, right? It goes back there. All of it. We got you Mr. President.

Read full Insider report here.

Thursday, April 28, 2011


This looks like a great way to get the message out. Hope there is a run on the large sticky notes at the local office supply shop.

Fed up with rising prices — on everything from groceries to gas — thousands of ordinary Americans are silently protesting the Obama administration at supermarkets and gas pumps with sticky notes.

Purchase a pad of large sticky notes. Write on each one, “How’s that Hope & Change working out for you?” Every time you stop to fill your vehicle with gas, place your sticky note somewhere on the pump before you drive away. DO NOT be destructive in ANY way! Place your sticky note somewhere, so as not to impede the next customer‘s ability to read the pump’s digital readout.

After placing your sticky note, please consider taking a digital picture, then uploading it to our wall. Please tell us in which city and state the picture was taken. This is meant to be a “quiet” protest by our silent majority of Americans, to be served upon this administration!!

Go to The Blaze blog here.

Amazon packing after House vote in SC

It appears that SC had a law on the books that exempted companies from collecting sales tax on out of state sales. This law was enacted to lure the QVC distribution center to Florence. The law expired in June of last year. Promises were made to Amazon to lure them to build in Cayce, but this vote seems to negate the sales tax exemption they were counting on.

Amazon's case seems to be muddled a bit because they have a publishing company in Charleston that somehow is part of the initial agreement. This may be the sticking point.

When you are talking about a nationwide distribution center, I can see not applying the sale tax to out of state shipments. The publishing company is another story. It seems to me a bill could be drafted to accommodate all parties and keep the deal intact. However, Amazon is a big company with many millions of dollars more at stake than the $100 million cost of the building. If SC is thought to be unfriendly, there are plenty of other states that will battle for the new distribution center and jobs. SC's loss is another state's gain.

Online retailer cancels contracts, job postings for Cayce site.

Amazon all but told South Carolina goodbye Wednesday after the online retailer lost a legislative showdown on a sales tax collection exemption it wants to open a distribution center that would bring 1,249 jobs to the Midlands.

Company officials immediately halted plans to equip and staff the one million-square-foot building under construction at I-77 and 12th Street near Cayce.

“As a result of today’s unfortunate House vote, we’ve canceled $52 million in procurement contracts and removed all South Carolina fulfillment center job postings from our (Web) site,” said Paul Misener, Amazon vice president for global public policy.

The decision came shortly after state representatives rejected the tax break 71-47.
“People who think this is a bluff don’t know Amazon,” Lexington County Councilman Bill Banning said. “Too many other states want them.”

The partly finished center probably will be completed and then “put into mothballs,” he said.
Most Midlands lawmakers supported the exemption, but opposition fanned by a coalition of small merchants, national retailers and Tea Party activists proved insurmountable, even as Misener came to lobby lawmakers Wednesday in a last-ditch bid to save the proposal.

Other measures proposing the tax break remain alive, but a loss that was unexpectedly lopsided makes it unlikely any will be considered.

“This is really devastating,” said House Majority Leader Kenny Bingham, R-Lexington. “Anything is possible, but this makes it pretty difficult to resurrect.”

The loss of Amazon will be a black eye for future efforts to lure major employers to the state, Amazon allies warn.

“It’s beyond a squandered opportunity,” Banning said. “It’s a disgrace. It’s likely no one will even look at coming here for 10 years.”

Read full article here.

Read more on the subject here.

Eat The Rich

Price Of Gas Poster

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Free Lunch - 900 Teachers Laid Off From Los Angeles Unified School District

Received this email today and thought I'd pass it on.  Guess this teacher didn't know that the cell phones are free, as are the minutes, courtesy of  you , the taxpayer.
Free Lunch...
900 teachers just got laid off from the Los Angeles Unified School District. The district is $650,000 over its annual budget.

The following English teacher helps to explain one area that looms large over California 's educational crisis.

This English teacher has phrased it the best I've seen yet.
This should make everyone think, be you Democrat, Republican or Independent
From a California school teacher - - -

"As you listen to the news about the student protests over illegal immigration, there are some things that you should be aware of:
I am in charge of the English-as-a-second-language department at a large southern California high school which is designated a Title 1 school, meaning that its students average lower socioeconomic
and income levels.

Most of the schools you are hearing about, South Gate High, Bell Gardens, Huntington Park, etc. where these students are protesting, are also Title 1 schools.

Title 1 schools are on the free breakfast and free lunch program. When I say free breakfast, I'm not talking a glass of milk and roll -- but a full breakfast and cereal bar with fruits and juices that would make a Marriott proud.
The waste of this food is monumental, with trays and trays of it being dumped in the trash uneaten.
I estimate that well over 50% of these students are obese or at least moderately overweight. About 75% or more DO have
cell phones. The school also provides day care centers for the unwed teenage pregnant girls(some as young as 13) so they can attend class without the inconvenience of having to arrange for babysitters or having family watch their kids.
I was ordered to spend $700,000 on my department or risk losing
for the upcoming year even though there was little need for anything; my budget was already substantial. I ended up buying new computers for the computer learning center, half of which, one month later, have been carved with graffiti by the appreciative students who obviously feel humbled and grateful to have a free education in America.

I have had to intervene several times for young and substitute teachers whose classes consist of many illegal immigrant students here in the country less than 3 months who raised so much hell with the female teachers, calling them "Putas"
(whores ) and throwing things, that the teachers were in tears.

Free medical, free education, free food, day care, etc, etc, etc. Is it any wonder they feel entitled not only to be in this country but to demand rights, privileges and entitlements?

To those who want to point out how much these illegal immigrants contribute to our society because they LIKE their gardener and housekeeper and they like to pay less for tomatoes: spend some time in the real world of illegal immigration and see the TRUE costs.

Higher insurance, medical facilities closing, higher medical costs, more crime, lower standards of education in our schools, overcrowding, new diseases etc., etc, etc. For me, I'll pay more for tomatoes.

We need to wake up. The guest worker program will be a disaster because we won't have the guts to enforce it. Does anyone in their right mind really think they will voluntarily leave and return?

It does, however, have everything to do with culture: A third-world culture that does not value education, that accepts children getting pregnant and dropping out of school by 15 and that refuses to assimilate, and an
American culture that has become so weak and worried about "political correctness" that we don't have the will to do anything about it.

If this makes your
blood boil, as it did mine, forward this to everyone you know including your Congressmen and Senators.

CHEAP LABOR? Isn't that what the whole immigration issue is about?

Business doesn't want to pay a decent wage.

Consumers don't want expensive produce.

Government will tell you Americans don't want the jobs.
But the bottom line is cheap labor. The phrase "cheap labor" is a myth, a farce, and a lie. There is no such thing as "cheap labor."
Take, for example, an illegal alien with a wife and five children. He takes a job for
$5.00 or 6.00/hour. At that wage, with six dependents,
he pays no income tax, yet at the end of the year, if he files an Income Tax Return, he gets an "earned income credit" of up to $3,200 free.
He qualifies for Section 8 housing and subsidized rent.
He qualifies for food stamps.
He qualifies for free (no deductible), no co-pay) health care.
His children get free breakfasts and lunches at school.
He requires bilingual teachers and books.
He qualifies for relief from high energy bills.
If they are or become, aged, blind or disabled, they qualify for SSI without having contributed one thin dime to it.
Once qualified for SSI they can qualify for Medicare. All of this is at
(our) taxpayer's expense

He doesn't worry about car insurance, life insurance, or homeowners insurance.
Taxpayers provide Spanish language signs, bulletins and printed material.
He and his family receive the equivalent of $20.00 to $30.00/hour in benefits.
Working Americans are lucky to have $5.00 or $6.00/hour
left after paying their bills AND his.

The American taxpayers also pay for increased crime, graffiti and trash clean-up. Have you seen how they "decorate" the buildings in their neighborhoods?
Cheap labor? YEAH RIGHT! Wake up people!


Obama Releases Birth Certificate

Finally this one doubt can be put to rest. I think Obama was waiting until a formidable Republican candidate stuck his neck out and challenged him just to gain some political advantage. Whatever the reason, the Republicans can get off this minor issue and challenge Obama on things much more substantial.

Excerpt:Saying he has long been “bemused” and “puzzled” over the fascination the controversy surrounding his birth certificate, President Obama said he released the long-form version of his birth certificate in order to help get the nation’s attention back on the “enormous challenges” facing the country.

Obama noted that during a recent stretch where he and Republicans were laying out their budget visions for the future, the primary news story has been about the so-called “birther” controversy.
“We’ve got some enormous challenges out there,” Obama said. He said he was “confident” about the ability to meet those challenges but added, “we’re not going to be able to do it if we are distracted.”

Trump also questioned why it has taken so long for the White House to release the document. White House communications director Dan Pfeiffer said “the President believed the distraction over his birth certificate wasn't good for the country. It may have been good politics and good TV, but it was bad for the American people and distracting from the many challenges we face as a country.”

Pfeiffer said the president asked his counsel to go through the legal options of asking the state of Hawaii to make an exception to release a form of birth certificate not normally made public. Pfeiffer said the state agreed to do so, “in part because of the tremendous volume of requests they had been getting.”

Read MSNBC release here.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Poverty Is Easy to Explain

Great article on the relationship of poverty to the degree of government intervention. Anyone with a bit of intelligence knows our country cannot maintain its collective standard of living when more than half of its people are supported by the government. Of course, a portion of that 50% are people like myself that are receiving Social Security, the government "pension plan" that we, and our employers, paid into for many years. Of course as soon as the money reached the government coffers it was replaced by an IOU and spent by the politicians in what is the biggest PONZI Scheme in the history of the world.

As a great President once said, "Government is not the solution to our problem, government IS the problem"

Academics, politicians, clerics, and others always seem perplexed by the question: Why is there poverty? Answers usually range from exploitation and greed to slavery, colonialism, and other forms of immoral behavior. Poverty is seen as something to be explained with complicated analysis, conspiracy doctrines, and incantations. This vision of poverty is part of the problem in coming to grips with it.

There is very little either complicated or interesting about poverty. Poverty has been man’s condition throughout his history. The causes of poverty are quite simple and straightforward. Generally, individual people or entire nations are poor for one or more of the following reasons: (1) they cannot produce many things highly valued by others; (2) they can produce things valued by others but they are prevented from doing so; or (3) they volunteer to be poor.

We do not know fully what makes some societies richer than others. However, we can make guesses based on correlations. Start out by ranking countries according to their economic systems. Conceptually we could arrange them from more capitalistic (having a larger free-market sector) to more communistic (with extensive State intervention and planning). Then consult Amnesty International’s ranking of countries according to human-rights abuses. Then get World Bank income statistics and rank countries from highest to lowest per capita income.

Compiling the three lists, one would observe a very strong, though imperfect, correlation: Those countries with greater economic liberty tend also to have stronger protections of human rights. And their people are wealthier.

To a significant degree the wealth of nations is embodied in their people. The starkest example of this is the experience of the Germans and Japanese after World War II. During the war, Allied bombing missions destroyed nearly the entire physical stock of each country. What was not destroyed was the human capital of the people: their skills and education. In two or three decades, both countries reemerged as formidable economic forces. The Marshall Plan and other U.S. subsidies to Europe and Japan cannot begin to explain their recovery.

Proper identification of the causes of poverty is critical. If it is seen, as is too often the case, as a result of exploitation, the policy recommendation that naturally emerges is income redistribution—that is, government confiscation of some people’s “ill-gotten” gains and “restoration” to their “rightful” owners. This is the politics of envy: bigger and bigger welfare programs domestically and bigger and bigger foreign-aid programs internationally.

If poverty is correctly seen as a result of the unwise government intervention and lack of productive capacity, more effective policy recommendations emerge.

Read full Walter Williams article here.

Obama Seems Incapable of Loving America

Thanks to the Canada Free Press for this article.

We have witnessed hyperbole, gross exaggeration and outright lies from this man on a scale that would make most politicians blush.

Do forty percent of Americans really hate their country, or are they just too self-absorbed, apathetic and/or obtuse to recognize the loathing Barack Obama displays for the United States of America? Forty seems to be the percentage of people, give or take a few, who still express their approval of this president and his policies, in spite of the disdain he shows both for them and their country.

Perhaps American voters have become so cynical they can’t hear what their leaders are clearly saying to them. Consider that just prior to the 2008 presidential election, Obama said, “We are just five days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America.” What did he mean by that? How many interpretations could there be for that statement?

Were the voters so starved for leadership that they craved the attention of a community organizer who had never accomplished anything, simply because he told them that they could have things they had never earned, paid for by people they had never met? Or is it possible that Obama’s rhetoric was so meaningless that when he said “fundamental transformation,” all they heard was “hope and change.”

Since that time, we have witnessed hyperbole, gross exaggeration and outright lies from this man on a scale that would make most politicians blush. But every once in a while, as he did in that speech in 2008, Obama shows us who he really is and what he really believes — if we are listening.

Such a moment of startling honesty came recently when Obama delivered what the mainstream media laughingly described as a “response” to Rep. Paul Ryan’s common sense budget. What the speech really amounted to, of course, was simply a tired partisan kick-off of his 2012 re-election campaign. In it, Obama again stated his contempt for the nation that has given him so much. Consider this excerpt:

“Part of this American belief that we’re all connected also expresses itself in a conviction that each one of us deserves some basic measure of security and dignity. We recognize that no matter how responsibly we live our lives, hard times or bad luck, a crippling illness or a layoff may strike any one of us. ‘There but for the grace of God go I,’ we say to ourselves. And so we contribute to programs like Medicare and Social Security, which guarantee us health care and a measure of basic income after a lifetime of hard work; unemployment insurance, which protects us against unexpected job loss; and Medicaid, which provides care for millions of seniors in nursing homes, poor children, those with disabilities. We’re a better country because of these commitments. I’ll go further. We would not be a great country without those commitments.”

Really, Mr. Obama? When Thomas Jefferson penned the Declaration of Independence and risked his life signing it along with the other Founders, were we not a great country? When George Washington led his troops in the freezing cold at Valley Forge, were we not a great country? When James Madison became the father of the U.S. Constitution, were we not a great country? When Abraham Lincoln agonized over the salvation of the Union and the abolition of slavery, were we not a great country?

For the first 189 years of our nation’s existence we were not a great country? Is that what you are saying Mr. Obama? Until Franklin Roosevelt pushed through the Ponzi scheme known as Social Security in 1935 and Lyndon Johnson compounded the shell game with Medicare in 1965, we were — what? A mediocre country? An average country? Or perhaps, as your wife expressed during the campaign, we were “a downright mean country.” Is that what you really believe about the United States of America? Obviously, it is.

Go to the Canada Free Press site here.

Will Ron Paul Resonate with the Voters This Time Around?

Thanks to the Business Insider for this article. It appears Paul is running again and the political climate is probably more favorable to his message. My personal opinion, even while agreeing with most of what he espouses, is that he has a huge mountain to climb.

It's just obvious that in the last four years, since the last time Ron Paul ran for President, the ideological center of gravity in the GOP -- and the whole country for that matter -- has shifted a lot closer to Ron Paul's position.

In 2008, Paul ran a cult campaign as a libertarian, anti-Fed, anti-war Republican.
At the time, nobody in the GOP really cared about the Fed, and for the most part, Bush's wars enjoyed broad support.

Today they're Obama's wars, and the Fed is one of the most disliked institutions around, taking daily abuse even from mainstream outlets like CNBC.

It's inconceivable to think that in the GOP primary, candidates won't be asked for their position on Bernanke, quantitative easing, the role of the dollar, and of all the candidates, only Ron Paul has made a career on all these issues. In fact, after decades fighting his fight, he must be somewhat shocked that in just the last few years, his ideology has become so popular (or maybe he's shocked that it took so long).

In 2008, the GOP primary was dominated by Serious candidates like Mitt Romney and John McCain and Fred Thompson and even Rudy Giuliani. They were content to basically ignore what Ron Paul had to say. This time, they'll be fighting on his turf.

Go to the Business Insider site here.

Sarah Palin for the Fed? Ahead of the Times!

Bernanke had to have known that his "quantitative easing" would not work. If I were a conspiracy nut, I would think that he is part of the "new world order" crowd that wants to destroy our economy and rebuild it under the progressives' model.

The big question as Chairman Bernanke gets set for his first quarterly press conference is how Sarah Palin was able to figure out sooner than everyone else that the Federal Reserve’s campaign of quantitative easing wouldn’t work. Disappointment in the Fed’s policies is being reported this morning at the top of page one of the New York Times. It reports that “most Americans are not feeling the difference” from the Fed’s “experimental effort to spur a recovery by purchasing vast quantities of federal debt.” It reports that “a broad range of economists say that the disappointing results show the limits of the central bank’s ability to lift the nation from its economic malaise.”

It’s a terrific story, and well-timed, given that on Wednesday Mr. Bernanke will break tradition and meet with the press. It is part of the Fed’s effort to get ahead of what is emerging as a public relations catastrophe, as gasoline is nearing six dollars a gallon at some pumps, the cost of groceries is skyrocketing, and the value of the dollars that Mr. Bernanke’s institution issues as Federal Reserve notes has collapsed to less than a 1,500th of an ounce of gold. Unemployment is still high. Shakespeare couldn’t come up with a better plot. But how in the world did Mrs. Palin, who is supposed to be so thick, manage to figure all this out so far ahead of the New York Times and all the economists it talked to?

Read NY Sun article here.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Thuggery 101: Union Official, Professor Teach College Course in Violent Union Tactics

EPA Rules Force Shell to Abandon Oil Drilling Plans in Alaska

I'm so glad that the environmental groups are happy. I'm sure they will be very happy when gas hits the $6 range this summer. And if you want to blame the big oil companies for the problem, don't look at the raw dollars they are making, look at the income percentage and the investment required and compare that to other industries. Then look at your pension fund, 401k or IRA and see if you own big oil. Yes, Obama and the liberals who demonize big oil for political advantage, are really throwing stones at your financial future.

Because of Obama's policies and the EPA, development of new oil fields has come to a grinding halt. The Alaskan pipeline is at 30% capacity and in danger of being shut down. The energy policy of Obama and the Democrats is pure insanity.

Shell Oil Company has announced it must scrap efforts to drill for oil this summer in the Arctic Ocean off the northern coast of Alaska. The decision comes following a ruling by the EPA’s Environmental Appeals Board to withhold critical air permits. The move has angered some in Congress and triggered a flurry of legislation aimed at stripping the EPA of its oil drilling oversight.

Shell has spent five years and nearly $4 billion dollars on plans to explore for oil in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas. The leases alone cost $2.2 billion. Shell Vice President Pete Slaiby says obtaining similar air permits for a drilling operation in the Gulf of Mexico would take about 45 days. He’s especially frustrated over the appeal board’s suggestion that the Arctic drill would somehow be hazardous for the people who live in the area. “We think the issues were really not major,” Slaiby said, “and clearly not impactful for the communities we work in.”

The closest village to where Shell proposed to drill is Kaktovik, Alaska. It is one of the most remote places in the United States. According to the latest census, the population is 245 and nearly all of the residents are Alaska natives. The village, which is 1 square mile, sits right along the shores of the Beaufort Sea, 70 miles away from the proposed off-shore drill site.

The EPA’s appeals board ruled that Shell had not taken into consideration emissions from an ice-breaking vessel when calculating overall greenhouse gas emissions from the project. Environmental groups were thrilled by the ruling.

“EPA has demonstrated that they’re not competent to handle the process,” said Sen. Lisa Murkowski. “So if they’re not competent to handle it, they need to get out of the way.”

Murkowski supported budget amendments that would have stripped the EPA of its oversight role in Arctic offshore drilling. The Interior Department issues air permits to oil companies working in the Gulf of Mexico

Read full FOX News report here.

IMF bombshell: Age of America nears end

You hear a lot about the deficit on Capitol Hill but little about the effect it has on the strength of the US dollar and its value on the world stage. China has emerged on that stage by providing cheap labor and a cheap energy policy that has little regard for the worldwide environmentalist movement. While labor costs, fueled by union activism, rose dramatically here at home, China, taking advantage of an enormous poor population, has managed to create a manufacturing juggernaut.

We here in the US are still the innovators, but look to other countries to provide the final products. Entire industries have effectively disappeared, shoe, textile, steel, electronics; and the US auto makers are in trouble. We have become a nation of service workers and China has risen to fill the void.

The US, as the most powerful nation, has promoted freedom. What will the Communist regime in China promote as they become the most powerful nation in the world?

The International Monetary Fund has just dropped a bombshell, and nobody noticed.

For the first time, the international organization has set a date for the moment when the “Age of America” will end and the U.S. economy will be overtaken by that of China.

And it’s a lot closer than you may think.

According to the latest IMF official forecasts, China’s economy will surpass that of America in real terms in 2016 — just five years from now.

Put that in your calendar.

It provides a painful context for the budget wrangling taking place in Washington, D.C., right now. It raises enormous questions about what the international security system is going to look like in just a handful of years. And it casts a deepening cloud over both the U.S. dollar and the giant Treasury market, which have been propped up for decades by their privileged status as the liabilities of the world’s hegemonic power.

According to the IMF forecast, whomever is elected U.S. president next year — Obama? Mitt Romney? Donald Trump? — will be the last to preside over the world’s largest economy.

The rise of China, and the relative decline of America, is the biggest story of our time. You can see its implications everywhere, from shuttered factories in the Midwest to soaring costs of oil and other commodities. Last fall, when I attended a conference in London about agricultural investment, I was struck by the number of people there who told stories about Chinese interests snapping up farmland and foodstuff supplies — from South America to China and elsewhere.

This is the result of decades during which China has successfully pursued economic policies aimed at national expansion and power, while the U.S. has embraced either free trade or, for want of a better term, economic appeasement.

“There are two systems in collision,” said Ralph Gomory, research professor at NYU’s Stern business school. “They have a state-guided form of capitalism, and we have a much freer former of capitalism.” What we have seen, he said, is “a massive shift in capability from the U.S. to China. What we have done is traded jobs for profit. The jobs have moved to China. The capability erodes in the U.S. and grows in China. That’s very destructive. That is a big reason why the U.S. is becoming more and more polarized between a small, very rich class and an eroding middle class. The people who get the profits are very different from the people who lost the wages.”

No wonder so many have been buying gold. If the U.S. dollar ceases to be the world’s sole reserve currency, what will be? The euro would be fine if it acts like the old deutschemark. If it’s just the Greek drachma in drag ... not so much.

The last time the world’s dominant hegemon lost its ability to run things singlehandedly was early in the past century. That’s when the U.S. and Germany surpassed Great Britain. It didn’t turn out well.

Read full WSJ article here.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Obama's NLRB Tries to Shut Down Boeing SC Plant to Placate Unions

In March of 2010, Obama made 2 recess appointments to the NLRB. One, Craig Becker, had been effectively blocked by the heavily Democrat Senate when debate failed cloture by a vote of 52 to 33.

Bloomberg News reported the recess appointment this way:

The appointment of Craig Becker, a union lawyer who will now serve on the National Labor Relations Board, drew immediate criticism. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce issued a statement denouncing the appointment of Becker, who has represented the AFL-CIO and the Service Employees International Union, while Congress is away.

“The business community should be on red alert for radical changes that could significantly impair the ability of America’s job creators to compete,” said the Chamber’s labor vice president Randel Johnson in yesterday’s statement.

Rulings such as this one against Boeing should be no surprise since Obama has loaded the board with far left union activists.

Excerpt from Business Week article:
South Carolina political leaders used words such as "frivolous," "shameful" and "ludicrous" Thursday to describe a National Labor Relations Board complaint against Boeing Co., which is building a $750 million aircraft assembly plant in the state.

"We absolutely will not allow them to bully our businesses or mess with our employees. As governor, I absolutely will not stand for it," vowed Republican Gov. Nikki Haley at a news conference a short distance from where Boeing is building a second assembly line for its new 787 jetliners.

The complaint filed Wednesday alleges Boeing decided to build the plant in South Carolina, a right-to-work state, because it was concerned about strikes by union workers in the state of Washington.

U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham said the agency's request for a court order forcing the aerospace company to build the line in the Pacific Northwest shouldn't be taken seriously.

"Boeing came here because it was a darn good deal for Boeing and a great deal for South Carolina," the S.C. Republican said. "Boeing is going to stay here. They are going nowhere, just like this complaint, eventually, will go nowhere."

Graham said he will work with other lawmakers to make sure Congress knows about what he called "this outrageous decision by the NLRB -- unelected bureaucrats that have put in motion a precedent that will destroy American businesses."

He said the complaint is, in effect, a proposal to give unions a veto over decisions by businesses to come to right-to-work states.

out and they are filing a complaint that is frivolous at best and irresponsible at worst," he said.

"This is a shameful act. It is outrageous and extraordinarily wasteful," added Charleston Mayor Joseph P. Riley Jr., the only Democrat at the news conference. "Huge sums of money will be spent on this litigation and Boeing will prevail, without any question."

He said no one in Washington lost a job because of the Boeing decision and, in fact, jobs were added in the Northwest.

"I will apologize to the employees of Boeing that you have to go through this because this is ludicrous," said North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey. "When our own federal government stands in the way of economic growth and development in this country, it's ludicrous."

Read full BusinessWeek article here.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Col. West - Defense in a Time of Economic Danger

Colonel Allen West Answers a Question On Islam

Scathing Congress report slams Obama's 'covert, criminal activity'

We were led to believe that Issa had been investigating Obama's activities and had uncovered damning evidence of unlawful activity. I hope he is still investigating whatever it is, because I don't see anything here that is going to stick with the electorate.

President charged with illegally using taxpayer money to manipulate public.

Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., the ranking Republican on the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, issued a scathing staff report today charging that the White House has "used the machinery of the Obama campaign to tout the president's agenda through inappropriate and sometimes unlawful public relations and propaganda initiatives."

An advance pre-publication copy of the report, shared by Issa's Washington office with WND, accuses the White House of nothing short of criminal activity. It charges the Obama administration with violating federal laws to advance what the Government Accounting Office has characterized as an unlawful "covert campaign," using federal resources "to activate a sophisticated propaganda and lobbying campaign."

Pulling no punches, the Oversight Republican Report accuses the Obama White House of "violating federal law prohibiting the use of appropriated funds for publicity or propaganda purposes."

"The White house has failed to transition from campaign mode to leadership mode and is now inappropriately leveraging those campaign-trail relationships to unlawfully generate support for the president's agenda," the report concludes.

Read in its entirety, the Oversight Republican Report charges the Obama administration with the type of callous, unethical and possibly criminal manipulation of public opinion that is reminiscent of Watergate and the illegal campaign activities engineered by Donald Segretti on behalf of the Committee to Re-Elect the President during Richard Nixon's presidential election campaign of 1972.

In 1974, Donald Segretti pleaded guilty to three misdemeanor counts of distributing illegal campaign materials, for which he served in federal prison four months of a six-month term.

The Obama administration's abuses alleged in the Oversight Republican Report can be summed up under the term "astro-turfing," a fraudulent public relations activity in which "the White House and the agency whose resources it is co-opting attempt to create the impression that grassroots support for a particular policy exists when in fact it has been fabricated using taxpayer dollars."

The report points to several instances of alleged, unlawful abuses:

Read full detailed WorldNetDaily report of abuses here.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

"Atlas Shrugged" box office success stuns liberal Hollywood

I'm waiting for it to come to a theater nearby.

By current Hollywood standards, it is a movie that should never have been made. Imagine this story pitch to progressive movie execs: "we have a female heroine, genius entrepreneurs disappearing, and a government conspiring to control its people and their creations. In short, a powerfully persuasive anti-government message."

Not exactly “Iron Man 3” is it?

Yet, despite (or because of) Hollywood’s best efforts to keep the movie down, “Atlas” is racking up dollar signs at the box office. With a hearty $5640 per theater in its opening weekend, “Atlas Shrugged,” based on the influential Ayn Rand best-seller, has left Hollywood insiders dumbstruck to explain its success.

The Hollywood Reporter has reported that the film will expand its release from 299 theaters to 425 this weekend and to 1,000 by the end of the month.

So is it the film’s message that Hollywood is so opposed to? In the Age of Obama, Ayn Rand’s “Atlas Shrugged” may be resonating more than ever before and that can’t be sitting well with Hollywood progressives.

A New York Times poll this week showed a 73% disapproval of Congress. A Gallup poll showed President Obama’s approval rating plunged to an all-time low of 41%.

“People are hungry for what these characters are saying,” says executive producer John Aglialoro “They’re telling the government, ‘Just leave me alone. Let me hang onto my life and pursue my passions and rational self-interest. That’s what will benefit society.”

That message is what is driving the success of “Atlas Shrugged.” Although it was written more than fifty years ago, Rand’s unabashed defense of individualism seems more relevant than ever before.

“We’ve touched a nerve with people,” agrees Kaslow. “Really it is all about the (Rand) brand. Here we haven’t diluted it with any names of anybody. It simply stands up there on its own because it means so much to so many people. Everyone is Atlas Shrugged. Everyone is carrying a weight on their shoulders.”

Read full Washington Times article here.

50 Life Secrets and Tips

Ran across this site, High Existence, and thought it contained a number of interesting articles on how to improve your life. Enjoy!

Read and learn the 50 life secrets here.

Obama's Work Is Done Poster

Tea Party - We Ain't Goin' Away | Bruce Bellott

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Obama Supports Colombia Oil Refinery Development - Soros? Donations?

Considering everything, I cannot say this is a totally bad move since it is a loan and many of the support jobs for equipment etc., we are told, are here in the US. The problem I have is the hypocrisy of the Obama administration in supporting Brazil's and now Colombia's oil field and refinery development, while demonizing the American oil industry and failing to promote and support development here at home. I guess it is most likely not hypocrisy, but a calculated move to enrich one of Obama's major donors, George Soros.

If we are going to risk billions to develop foreign sources of this evil energy, why don't we risk a few dollars here at home? Or better yet, get our government out of the way and let private enterprise take over. We could become energy self sufficient within ten years and take away all those dollars from our Arab and Venezuelan "friends".

The U.S. Export-Import Bank, an independent agency of the federal government, is now planning a $2.84-billion loan for a massive project to expand and upgrade an oil refinery--in Cartagena, Colombia.

The money would go to Reficar, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ecopetrol, the Colombian national oil company.

“This is part of a $5.18 billion refinery and upgrade project in Cartagena, Colombia supplying petroleum products to the domestic and export markets,” the Export-Import Bank said in a statement.

The U.S. government-controlled bank says the $2.84-billion in financing it plans to undertake will be the second largest project it has ever done. The largest was $3 billion in financing for a liquid natural gas project in Papua New Guinea.

The statement released by the bank said that on April 7 the bank’s presidentially-appointed board of directors had “voted to grant preliminary approval for a $2.84 billion direct loan/loan guarantee” for the Colombian refinery project.

Read full CNS News article here.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

DeMint Threatens Filibuster on Raising Debt Ceiling

You win concessions from Obama on his czars and he goes back on his word. Republicans cannot rely on anything he says. I don't believe many of the old guard Republicans have the skepticism necessary to deal with the likes of community organizer Obama. DeMint understands and is willing to challenge the establishment. Kudos for DeMint in his struggle for us common people.

Republican Sen. Jim DeMint is threatening to block a vote in Congress on raising the U.S. debt ceiling unless he wins a balanced-budget amendment to the Constitution, according to Fox News. The filibuster threat comes a day after news that GOP leaders had offered private assurances to the White House that they ultimately would vote to raise the $14.3 trillion ceiling, regardless of whether a deal is reached on long-term spending cuts.

"I will oppose any attempt to vote to raise the limit on our $14 trillion debt until Congress passes the balanced-budget amendment," the South Carolina conservative said. He first made the remarks to McClatchy, which his office confirmed to Fox News.

Other Republicans say they just want to see a serious plan for closing the deficit as a condition for support on a debt-limit increase.
Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla,, said on "Fox News Sunday" that he needs to have "absolute certainty" a deficit reduction plan includes "critical changes."

"Unless we do that, there's no way I'll support it," Coburn said on the debt ceiling increase.

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., on CNN's "State of the Union," said it's "yet to be determined" whether he would support a filibuster on the debt ceiling vote.

A balanced-budget amendment would prohibit the U.S. government from running a deficit. Such a provision would take a two-thirds vote in Congress, in addition to ratification by the states.

All GOP senators already have signed onto a balanced-budget amendment proposal, reviving a push from the mid-'90s -- when the House approved such an amendment, and the Senate fell one vote short of doing the same.

Read full Newsmax article here.

Corker Delivers Floor Speech on the CAP Act

Computer Programmer Testifies On Voter Machine Vulnerability

Monday, April 18, 2011

Democrats Keeping American Blacks Down

Detroit Moves Against Unions

Faced with declining population, worsening unemployment, and the resultant loss of tax revenues, the lavish employee union contracts are no longer sustainable. Detroit, once a great city, has now fallen into ruin. Perhaps, finally, the time is ripe for them to get their house in order.

DETROIT—A new state law has emboldened the Detroit mayor and schools chief to take a more aggressive stance toward public unions as the city leaders try to mop up hundreds of millions of dollars in red ink.

Robert Bobb, the head of the Detroit Public Schools, late last week sent layoff notices to the district's 5,466 salaried employees, including all of its teachers, a preliminary step in seeking broad work-force cuts to deal with lower enrollment.

Earlier last week, Detroit Mayor Dave Bing presented a $3.1 billion annual budget to City Council in which he proposed higher casino taxes and substantial cuts in city workers' health care and pensions to close an estimated $200 million budget gap.

Mr. Bobb, already an emergency financial manager for the struggling and shrinking public school system, is getting further authority under a measure signed into law March 17 that broadens state powers to intervene in the finances and governance of struggling municipalities and school districts. This could enable Mr. Bobb to void union contracts, sideline elected school-board members, close schools and authorize charter schools

Mr. Bobb, appointed in 2009 by Democratic Gov. Jennifer Granholm and retained by Republican Gov. Rick Snyder, pledged last week to use those powers to deal decisively with the district's $327 million shortfall and its educational deficiencies. Mr. Bobb raised the possibility of making unilateral changes to the collective-bargaining agreements signed with teachers less than two years ago.

Read full WSJ article here.

Where the Tax Money Is - Obama targets the middle class

The class warfare that Obama is promoting is full of holes as this WSJ article exposes. Look at what Obama does and says behind closed doors, not what his teleprompter says. There you will find where and how he plans to relieve you of your hard earned dollars and how he intends to redistribute it, not to the needy, but to his cronies. Thankfully, his biggest scheme, Cap & Tax, to transfer a major portion of your wealth to his Chicago backers was dead on arrival. But what he was unable to get Congress to do, he is pushing forward with the EPA.

In 2005 the top 5% earned over $145,000. If you took all the income of people over $200,000, it would yield about $1.89 trillion, enough revenue to cover the 2012 bill for Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security—but not the same bill in 2016, as the costs of those entitlements are expected to grow rapidly. The rich, in short, aren't nearly rich enough to finance Mr. Obama's entitlement state ambitions—even before his health-care plan kicks in.

So who else is there to tax? Well, in 2008, there was about $5.65 trillion in total taxable income from all individual taxpayers, and most of that came from middle income earners. The nearby chart shows the distribution, and the big hump in the center is where Democrats are inevitably headed for the same reason that Willie Sutton robbed banks.

This is politically risky, however, so Mr. Obama's game has always been to pretend not to increase taxes for middle class voters while looking for sneaky ways to do it. His first budget in 2009 included a "climate revenues" section from the indirect carbon tax of cap and trade, which of course would be passed down to all consumers. Such Democratic luminaries as Nancy Pelosi have often chattered about a European-style value-added tax, or VAT, which from a liberal perspective has the virtue of applying to every level of production or service and therefore is largely hidden from the people who pay it.

Now that those two ideas have failed politically, Mr. Obama is turning as he did last week to limiting tax deductions and other "loopholes," such as for mortgage interest payments. We support doing away with these distortions too, and so does Mr. Ryan, but in return for lower tax rates. Mr. Obama just wants the extra money, which he says will reduce the deficit but in practice will merely enable more spending.

Keep in mind that the most expensive tax deductions, in terms of lost tax revenue, go mainly to the middle class. These include the deductions for state and local tax payments (especially property taxes), mortgage interest, employer-sponsored health insurance, 401(k) contributions and charitable donations. The irony is that even as Mr. Obama says he merely wants the rich to pay a little bit more, his proposals would make the tax code less progressive than it is today.

Mr. Obama's speech was disgraceful for its demagoguery but also because it contained nothing remotely commensurate to the scale of the problem. If the President had come out for a large tax on the middle class, like a VAT, then at least the country could have debated the choice of paying for the government we have or modernizing it a la Mr. Ryan so it is affordable.

Instead the President will continue targeting the middle class for tax increases to pay for an entitlement state on autopilot, while claiming he only wants to tax the rich. Oh, and we almost forgot: Happy Tax Day.

Read full WSJ article here.

S&P Cuts U.S. Ratings Outlook to Negative

S&P believes that if the US does not get its spending and deficits in order, it may be forced to downgrade its credit rating within 2 to 3 years. They appear to be placing much of their hope, not on our current politicians, but on those that will be elected in 2012. Judging from the smoke and mirrors coming from Obama and the Democrats this last week on the new budget proposals, it appears that S&P is right in not expecting too much in the line of fiscal responsibility until the people get involved in the next election.

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services Inc. cut its outlook on the U.S. to negative, increasing the likelihood of a potential downgrade from its triple-A rating, as the path from large budget deficits and rising government debt remains unclear.

S&P analysts hosted a call explaining their decision to keep the U.S. at a AAA rating, but move the outlook to "negative." MarketBeat live-blogged the call. Here is the recap.

"More than two years after the beginning of the recent crisis, U.S. policy makers have still not agreed on how to reverse recent fiscal deterioration or address longer-term fiscal pressures," S&P credit analyst Nikola G. Swann said. He said the rating agency puts the chance of a U.S. downgrade within two years at least one-in-three.

The move comes amid continued hand-wringing over the balance sheet of the world's largest economy and disagreement among politicians on how to address fiscal woes as economic growth remains tepid.

S&P said Monday it sees material risk that policymakers might not agree on how to address budgetary challenges by 2013, which would render the U.S. fiscal profile weaker than that of other triple-A-rated countries.

S&P said Monday the U.S.'s rating is supported by its flexible and highly diversified economy and a consistent global preference for the U.S. dollar, which gives it "unique external liquidity."

Read full WSJ article here.

Things To Ponder - What If

Received this email today and thought I'd pass it along.

Things to ponder: What ..

If George W. Bush had doubled the national debt, which had taken more than two centuries to accumulate, in one year, would you have approved?

If George W.. Bush had then proposed to double the debt again within 10 years, would you have approved?

If George W. Bush had criticized a state law that he admitted he never even read, would you think that he is just an ignorant hot head?

If George W. Bush joined the country of Mexico and sued a state in the United States to force that state to continue to allow illegal immigration, would you question his patriotism and wonder who's side he was on?

If George Bush had pronounced the Marine Corps like Marine “Corpse” would you think him an idiot?

If George W. Bush had been the first President to need a TelePrompTer installed to be able to get through a press conference, would you have laughed and said this is more proof of how inept he is on his own and is really controlled by smarter men behind the scenes?

If George W. Bush had spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to take Laura Bush to a play in NYC, would you have approved?

If George W. Bush had reduced your retirement plan's holdings of GM stock by 90% and given the unions a majority stake in GM, would you have approved?

If George W. Bush had made a joke at the expense of the Special Olympics, would you have approved?

If George W. Bush had given Gordon Brown a set of inexpensive and incorrectly formatted DVDs, when Gordon Brown had given him a thoughtful and historically significant gift, would you have approved?

If George W. Bush had given the Queen of England an iPod containing videos of his speeches, would you have thought this embarrassingly narcissistic and tacky?

If George W. Bush had bowed to the King of Saudi Arabia , would you have approved?

If George W.. Bush had visited Austria and made reference to the nonexistent "Austrian language," would you have brushed it off as a minor slip?

If George W. Bush had filled his cabinet and circle of advisers with people who cannot seem to keep current in their income taxes, would you have approved?

If George W. Bush had stated that there were 57 states in the United States , would you have said that he is clueless.

If George W. Bush would have flown all the way to Denmark to make a five minute speech about how the Olympics would benefit him walking out his front door in Texas , would you have thought he was a self important, conceited, egotistical jerk.

If George W. Bush had been so Spanish illiterate as to refer to "Cinco de Cuatro" in front of the Mexican ambassador when it was the 5th of May (Cinco de Mayo), and continued to flub it when he tried again, would you have winced in embarrassment?

If George W. Bush had misspelled the word "advice" would you have hammered him for it for years like Dan Quayle and potatoes as proof of what a dunce he is?

If George W. Bush had burned 9,000 gallons of jet fuel to go plant a single tree on Earth Day, would you have concluded he's a hypocrite?

If George W. Bush's administration had okayed Air Force One flying low over millions of people followed by a jet fighter in downtown Manhattan causing widespread panic, would you have wondered whether they actually get what happened on 9-11?

If George W.. Bush had failed to send relief aid to flood victims throughout the Midwest with more people killed or made homeless than in New Orleans , would you want it made into a major ongoing political issue with claims of racism and incompetence?

If George W. Bush had created the position of 32 Czars who report directly to him, bypassing the House and Senate on much of what is happening in America , would you have approved?

So, tell me again, what is it about Obama that makes him so brilliant and impressive? Can't think of anything?

Don't worry. He's done all this in 26 months -- so you'll have two years and two months to come up with an answer.

Every statement in this email is factual and directly attributable to Barrack Hussein Obama. Every bumble is a matter of record and completely verifiable.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Rancher On Border Testifies Before Congress - The Real Shocking Story

Thanks to Tucson for this posting.

Testimony of James K. Chilton Jr. With regard to The National Security and Federal Lands Protection Act

Submitted to the United States House of Representatives – a joint hearing of the Natural Resources Committee and the Oversight and Government Reform Committee

April 15, 2011

My name is Jim Chilton. I am a 5th generation Arizona rancher. My address is Box 423, 17691 W. Chilton Ranch Road, Arivaca, Arizona 85601. Arivaca is approximately 55 miles southwest of Tucson, Arizona in native mesquite and oak grassland grazed for over 300 years since the explorer priest Fr. Kino brought cattle ranching to the area. The north end of our 50,000-acre ranch is adjacent to the town of Arivaca. The ranch continues south to the international border with Mexico. The ranch includes private property, State School Trust land, three federal grazing permits within the Coronado National Forest and a private land farm.

We have been in the cattle business in Arizona for over 125 years preserving our western ranching customs, culture and heritage dating back to our pioneering ancestors who settled in Arizona Territory in the 1880’s. Our multi-generational responsibility has given us a long-term view of the necessity to be excellent stewards of the grasslands and water resources we respectfully manage in Arizona. The Arizona Cattle Growers’ Association presented me with the Cattleman of the Year award in 2002.

However, we are challenged by the fact that 4 miles of the southern boundary of our ranch is the international border. The border is not signed or marked and consists of a five-strand barbed wire fence similar to most ranch fences. Our ranch house and headquarters are located 19 miles from the border. We have been burglarized twice by drug packers on their way back to Mexico. Our losses have been great and our sense of security in our own country has been severely damaged. We live with weapons near our bed, at the doors, in our vehicles and attached to our saddles.

I am pleased to testify on behalf of the Honorable Rob Bishop’s draft legislation to strengthen the U. S. Border Patrol’s ability to carry out its mission to manage, control and protect U.S. borders at and between official ports of entry. We believe the Border Patrol must be enabled to keep terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the United States. In addition, the Border Patrol, together with other local, state and federal agencies, must not be unduly hampered in their efforts to stop drug runners and undocumented aliens from entering the United States.

It would have been impossible to win World War II if the military had been forced to comply with current laws such as the National Environmental Policy Act, Endangered Species Act, Clean Water Act and dozens of other laws enacted by Congress after World War II. There is no way the war would have been won if the military had been obliged to complete endless Environmental Impact Statements, fund or carry out mitigation projects and suffer through years of radical environmental corporations’ lawsuits and appeals. We must not tie up our national defense at the border with red tape.

National Security demands that drug traffickers, terrorists and undocumented aliens be prevented from entering the United States at the border. Currently, on our ranch these people often travel 10 to 20 miles inside our country before the Border Patrol attempts to apprehend them. We have heard that, a few years ago, the Border Patrol found seven backpacks near our ranch which contained Yemeni Passports. Were the owners of the backpacks tourists or terrorists? We understand that significant numbers of persons apprehended–the ones who are caught–are not just Mexican citizens looking for work. The entrants include others with various motives. We strongly believe the Border Patrol must CONTROL THE BORDER AT THE BORDER.

The Border Patrol reported to the Government Accountability Office that by October 2010 it had control of 873 miles of the nearly 2,000 miles of the Southwest border, or 44%. This is not an acceptable situation for those of us who live along the other thousand-plus miles, nor is it a reassuring report when one considers that terrorists and criminals both have enormous areas through which they can pass. Wouldn’t it make sense to CONTROL THE BORDER AT THE BORDER by completing the border fence, establishing functioning 21st century communications, installing cameras and sensors, using drones, helicopters, satellites and other proven technologies developed by the military at the border rather than to trying to apprehend illegal crossers ten and 20 miles and often 70 to 100 miles inside the border?

Of course, back-up personnel should be deployed for a second and third line of defense to catch crossers who manage to penetrate border controls. As a practical matter, with about 22,500 people guarding our borders (21,000 Border Patrol and 1,500 National Guard) one third might be deployed along the Canadian Border while the balance could patrol the southern border. As a consequence, there could be at least 5 or 6 personnel per mile stationed at or very near the border. Past strategies of letting border crossers of all kinds freely travel well into the United States prior to any attempted interdiction have left us and our neighboring ranchers and communities in a no-man’s land.

The Border Patrol needs to be able to construct roads and place forward operating bases at or very close to the border to CONTROL THE BORDER AT THE BORDER. Currently, the Tucson, Arizona Sector personnel report to work in downtown Tucson, check out weapons and vehicles and then drive between one and a half and three hours to reach the border. The waste of time and the high cost of each officer traveling to and from the border in his or her individual Border Patrol vehicle are outrageous. The largest number of vehicles on the 23-mile Arivaca Road are Border Patrol vehicles going to and from shifts of duty. Perhaps a forward operating base in Arivaca, Sasabe and other places near the border would be a step forward. In summary, the Border Patrol must be able to construct the remainder of the promised fence, construct appropriate access roads, reduce the unacceptable daily commute from a distant city, and construct forward operating bases now without the burden and limitations resulting from existing environmental laws which are often given higher priority than national security.

Checkpoints on highways 30 and 40 miles north of the border should not be permanent since terrorists, druggers and undocumented aliens simply bypass the permanent locations on foot or on secondary roads. Systematically changing the location of checkpoints creates an element of surprise. Permanent checkpoints have proven to funnel illegal traffic into nearby communities forcing residents of border communities including Arivaca, Tubac, Green Valley, and Rio Rico to contend with shootings, robberies, and threatening trespassers. We are told by the Border Patrol that approximately 20% of the undocumented border crossers have criminal records or one in five is a known MS-13 gangster, burglar, murderer or just a common criminal.

There also needs to be a serious look into conflicts between the Border Patrol’s mission and the power of other federal land managers to put their agendas ahead of national security. One example of appalling funding losses faced by the Border Patrol is that Homeland Security had to give US Fish and Wildlife Service $50 million of its funds (which were of course deficit funds borrowed from China in the first place) so US Fish & Wildlife Service could study bats and other wildlife. This interagency agreement was for “mitigation” of the impacts of building the border fence. We find it difficult to understand how bats can be affected by a fence and wonder how such low-priority agendas have been empowered to divert appropriations from national security. The scientific intent of studying bats should be evaluated and prioritized openly in national science funding or Fish and Wildlife funds, not hidden where it raises serious questions of national priorities.

Upon some research we find that the initial $6.8 million “border security fence mitigation projects” include:

Projects to Benefit Environment on the Southwest Border

The First Mitigation Projects:
a. Sasabe Biological Opinion Arizona $2,119,000
b. Organ Pipe Cactus NM Biological Opinion Arizona $980,000
c. San Bernardino Valley Mitigation Arizona $657,480
d. Rio Yaqui Fish Studies Arizona $441,250
e. Peninsular Bighorn Sheep Study California $230,000
f. Coronado NM Agave Restoration Arizona $274,873
g. Northern Aplomado Falcon Reintroduction and Habitat Restoration New Mexico $499,700
h. Border-wide Bat Conservation Arizona $925,000

First, the title, “Projects to Benefit Environment on the Southwest Border” is preposterous in the face of the critical need for actually improving the environment on the southwest border by reducing the cross-country driving by drug packers and the garbage piles mounting in virtually every secluded border canyon. Second, for what purpose is the balance of the $50 million going to be spent ($43,200,000). Are these moneys just waiting for diversion to another “study?” Could these funds be recovered to apply to reducing the national debt?

Our ranching operation has been the proud recipient of two environmental awards and the subject of articles in conservation magazines. We monitor and manage our grasslands and riparian areas to maintain and enhance their biodiversity and productivity. The constant cross-country driving, and attendant damage directly caused by illegal vehicle traffic, visibly affect the environment miles inside the border. This situation is not confined to our ranch but is absolutely typical on every border ranch. To address a bit of the problem, hunting groups conduct huge garbage collection drives on border ranches each year just to make a dent in the plastic milk jugs, plastic bags and unmentionable other items littering the border area. If the Border Patrol CONTROLLED THE BORDER AT THE BORDER the environment 50 and 100 miles into America would no longer suffer this genuine abuse.

Consequently, since we see REAL environmental damage resulting from the failure to CONTROL THE BORDER AT THE BORDER, we view bat studies and all the rest of the supposed “projects to benefit the border environment” with a highly dubious eye. It appears to me that U.S. Fish and Wildlife should be funded by Congress directly to carry out those aspects of its mission deemed genuine priorities and should NOT be statutorily authorized to use a back door to wring money out of other agencies, money that you voted for on the belief it would advance national security and not be diverted to other purposes.

Another serious concern facing border ranchers and residents of border communities is that criminals engaged in human and drug transportation find it convenient to use Wildlife Refuges and Wilderness areas as easy corridors to hide and travel. My fellow rancher, Rob Krentz, was murdered with the killer escaping back to Mexico through the San Bernardino National Refuge. Emphatically, we oppose the designation of any and all new Wilderness Areas, Wildlands or Refuges within 100 miles of the southern border. Such designations are virtual gifts to Mexican drug cartels.

In addition, the Border Patrol must have the ability to immediately construct helicopter landing pads on mountain tops and any other locations so that Mexican cartel scouts occupying mountain tops inside the United States can be easily and quickly rooted out. Waiting for months or years for NEPA analysis, Endangered Species Act concerns and slow federal land management decisions is not compatible with the Border Patrol mission to CONTROL THE BORDER AT THE BORDER.

Unfortunately, Mexican cartel scouts, with the best binoculars, night vision and encrypted satellite phones, have been found to occupy the tops of mountains near our ranch headquarters and other locations all along the border and dozens of miles inside Arizona. As a consequence, the foreign cartel scouts know where the Border Patrol is located at all times and can then carefully guide the druggers and people smugglers through the mountains and valleys without being spotted. Not only do the scouts know where the Border Patrol is at all times, but they can observe me, my brother and our three cowboys riding horseback conducting our daily ranch work. Our houses are also easily monitored from mountains surrounding our headquarters. The cartel scouts must be immediately taken out of action by force if the border is to be secured.

I have an acquaintance who is a retired federal worker whose house has been burglarized 10 times by illegal border crossers on their way back to Mexico after having dumped their drug loads. We have been burglarized twice with serious losses. Many of our neighbors have suffered similar loss of security and property. Most all ranchers in the border area can not leave their houses since experience demonstrates that their homes will certainly be broken into if someone is not there. The Border Patrol must CONTROL THE BORDER AT THE BORDER so that citizens’ civil rights, property rights and human rights are protected. Ranchers along the border can not have peace of mind until the border is secured.