Merry Christmas to All…

Allow me to take just a few minutes to wish everyone who reads and participates here at Stand Up For America a happy holiday, or more specifically, a Merry Christmas. I don’t mean to dismiss those who don’t celebrate Christmas, but being in the non-secular world today, I am still put off by the idea that Merry Christmas is somehow offensive to someone. Can’t say it in the business world, might offend someone who isn’t Christian. To that I say bah, humbug. That someone would be offended by a well wish using the greeting that is pertinent to 70% of Americans is both childish and ignorant. SO I am saying Merry Christmas and if you don’t like it, tough. But I will say some for the rest of us too. And offer some Christmas Cartoons to boot!

That isn’t to say that I don’t want to wish a Happy Holidays to all the folks that come here. Whether you just finished Hannukah, Are preparing for Kwanzaa, Boxing Day, or Omisoka, I wish the best to all of you. The holidays, no matter your religious beliefs, are a time for spending with family and appreciating all the things that are gifts in your life. I am especially happy this year as I have my son home for Christmas. So I wish everyone the best. If you are participating in festivus, I only ask that you share the airing of grievances here with the rest of us. But as a former wrestler, I will not ask that you participate in the feats of strength. You simply are not going to pin the head of the SUFA household.

I won’t offer a political topic tonight, as whether you are happy with the current path or wishing for a change in course, today is a day to forget all of that and simply enjoy those around you. I will take the day to forget that the world of politics even exist. I suggest that everyone do the same. Enjoy the day, watch the Celtics or some football, eat some good food, and just relax. I won’t be writing Christmas night, and will probably not be writing Saturday or Sunday night either. Next week will be a bit sparse as well. I have to enjoy my son all I can before he has to return to school on the 2nd. I will write some, just not a lot. In the mean time I will ensure that an open thread is put up each night so that you can discuss whatever you might like to discuss. I will also take some time to jump in to any conversations going on. Without having to spend 4 hours writing, I will have far more time to participate in whatever discussions come up!

Once we hit the New Year, though…. It is full speed ahead! So take the rest while you can get it! Have a great holiday everyone!

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Comments

  1. Merry Christmas to all.

  2. Judy Sabatini says:

    Merry Christmas to you too Robert and Merry Christmas to one and all. Hope your day is filled with love, laughter, family, and most of all, a peaceful and joyous day.

    Judy

  3. Merry Christmas to everyone here. I do everyone’s day is merry and relaxing.

  4. Laetum Dies Natalis Solis Invicti*

    means “Joy to the birthday of the unconquered Sun”

    Dec. 25 was a pagan holiday rejoicing the rebirth of the Sun.

    Since June, the Sun has been dropping in the sky – dying. On Dec.21/22 it is at its lowest ebb.

    But as the Sun reaches its solstice, the rate of decline slows by Dec. 18 to be nearly imperceptible until it stops Dec. 21. From the 19th to the 24th, the Sun to the naked eye that it goes no lower and appears unchanged in the sky.

    So it isn’t until Dec. 25th that the naked eye could perceive that the sun is starting to rise again, hence it is this day the ancients celebrated the Sun’s rebirth.

    The Church, in its typical “if you can’t force them to join, join their celebrations but call it yours” – a “Revolution within the Form” – simply had to change one vowel….the ‘u’ to an ‘o’.
    Tad da! It’s now the Nazarene’s birthday!

    But whatever the reason for celebration, enjoy, and share lots of laughter and love!

  5. A very Merry Christmas to all.

  6. Merry Christmas to Everyone.

    Its the 26th here, so here goes… 😉

    Raising taxes, yeah, that’s the solution. Of course not handing the keys to the city to a bunch of communists and Marxists probably would’ve done alot to not have the problem in the first place.

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/12/23/states-seek-federal-bailout-replenish-jobless-funds/

    WASHINGTON — With the front line of defense for unemployed Americans crumbling, the jobless are facing potentially reduced benefits, and businesses — possibly higher taxes.

    So far, 25 states, including California, New York, Texas and Michigan, have run out of unemployment insurance money and have borrowed $24 billion from the federal government — loans that are interest free.

    By 2011, 15 more states will have exhausted their jobless trust funds and need $90 billion in loans to keep handing out benefit checks, according to federal projections.

    The federal government, however, is already up to its eyeballs in red ink, finishing fiscal year 2009 with an all-time high $1.42 trillion deficit and likely to top that this fiscal year as it extends unemployment benefits.

    In November, President Obama signed legislation to extend jobless benefits by 14 weeks nationally and by an additional six weeks after that for states with unemployment rates of 8.5 percent or higher. The bill would pay nearly 1 million workers an average $300 per week in extra benefits, according to the White House, and would allow businesses to recoup past tax payments for recent losses.

    Some analysts say in the long term, the bailout won’t have a lasting impact on state coffers. That’s because typically employers pay into a state insurance fund through a payroll tax and eventually businesses will replenish the trust funds.

    In the short run, though, state governments are under pressure either to hike taxes or to reduce unemployment benefits at a time when the U.S. economy has been weakened by the longest recession since World War II.

    “Everyone agrees that’s not a good thing to do when the unemployment rate is 10 percent,” said Gary Burtless, a senior fellow in economic studies at the Brookings Institution and an expert on labor policy.

    Burtless said payroll taxes, which on average nationally is about 0.6 percent, are too low and states should have been imposing higher taxes to avoid running out of money.

    “States are supposed to build up reserves to withstand severe recessions that they have experienced in the past,” he said. “But instead, what happens, once employers in a state see there’s a positive balance in the trust fund, they begin urging state legislators to cut back taxes.”

    The states with the lowest average payroll taxes are Virginia, (0.23), New Hampshire (0.25), South Dakota (0.26), Hawaii (0.27), and Texas (0.27). By contrast, the states with the highest average payroll taxes are Alaska (1.29), Rhode Island, (1.17), Michigan (1.08) and Oregon, (1.02).

    According to November unemployment rates from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Virginia had 6.6 percent unemployment, New Hampshire’s was 6.7 percent, South Dakota saw 5 percent unemployment, Hawaii had 7 percent and Texas 8 percent — all below the national average of 10 percent.

    Alaska’s unemployment rate in November was 8.7 percent, Rhode Island’s was 12.7 percent, Michigan, 14.7 percent and Oregon, 11.1 percent.

    Analysts dismiss any correlation between a state’s payroll tax and its unemployment rate, saying the payroll tax is very minimal compared to taxes for Social Security or Medicare.

    Richard Hobbie, executive director of the National Association of State Workforce Agencies, said he expects states to raise payroll taxes and cut unemployment benefits as a result of the recession.

    “History shows it’s a combination of the two” that is required to overcome the trust fund deficit, Hobbie said.

    Hobbie said some states, like Texas, would rather keep employer taxes low to stimulate the local economy and borrow money when reserves aren’t sufficient to weather a recession.

    “There are competing philosophies about reserves,” he said, adding that it is unknown which one is most effective.

    But Burtless said raising taxes would solve the imbalance.

    “I imagine that if they raise the payroll tax by .1 or .2 percent in the next five or 10 years, it will be enough to eliminate the insufficiency of the funds,” Burtless said.

    Borrowing money from Uncle Sam won’t remain free for states forever. If a state doesn’t repay the government within a few years, it faces interest and penalties.

    Still, borrowing by states is not unusual.

    “The bottom line, the system has been through serious recession before but the system has survived,” Hobbie said, adding that recoveries from the major recession in the 1970s and 1980s was bolstered by strong economic growth. “The real question is will we have the steady economic growth to recover the way we did before?”

  7. Judy Sabatini says:

    Unto you a Savior is born!
    OneNewsNow – 12/25/2009

    NativityThe Birth of Jesus
    In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register.

    So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

    The Shepherds and the Angels
    And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

    Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”

    When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

    So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

  8. Judy Sabatini says:

    I put this up last night, but thought I would I re-post it today, for those who might not have read it.

    I would like to take this time and opportunity to wish each and every one of you a very Merry Christmas and a very Happy Hanuka.

    I know I said this before, but it’s worth repeating. As I told Flag above, I feel truly blessed in getting to know all of you these past few months. You all have brought me joy, laughter, sorrow, and some great debates, and wonderful talks. But, most of all, you have brought me friendship, a friendship that I wouldn’t trade for anything in the world.

    You have helped me to learn a lot about you and I also have learned a great deal from you as well. And, for that, I am so very grateful to each of you and I thank you.

    USW, I want to specially thank you for this site and the opportunity you have given us all hear to speak our minds, argue back and forth, share our experiences and just plain everyday chats, that I have come to love, not to mention, bringing us all here together in this special bond that I would like to call friendship. I value everything you do and the time you put into writing the articles you do. I want to also take this opportunity to thank your wonderful wife for her input as well, and also for allowing you the time for what you do here. I thank you both so very much.

    You all here are so very special to me, and I am very proud to call you my friends and I truly love you all so very much, for I will not ever forget any of you, ever.

    Hope each and everyone of you will have a wonderful Holiday and wonderful New Year.

    Always and Forever

    Judy

  9. Merry Christmas (or the winter solstice holiday of your choosing) to all of you. 😉

  10. I hope you’re having a wonderful Christmas season with your family. This article might be worth a look in the future. I don’t know if you’re aware of it….

    http://www.bizzyblog.com/2009/12/23/lucid-links-122309-morning/

    This Is How Tyrants Think and Operate Update, from Andy McCarthy at the Corner:

    You just can’t make up how brazen this crowd is. One week ago, President Obama quietly signed an executive order that makes an international police force immune from the restraints of American law.

    …. (On December 16) for no apparent reason, President Obama issued an executive order removing the Reagan limitations. That is, Interpol’s property and assets are no longer subject to search and confiscation, and its archives are now considered inviolable. This international police force (whose U.S. headquarters is in the Justice Department in Washington) will be unrestrained by the U.S. Constitution and American law while it operates in the United States and affects both Americans and American interests outside the United States.

    McCarthy does not exaggerate. The EO’s exact wording is (bold is mine):

    By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including section 1 of the International Organizations Immunities Act (22 U.S.C. 288), and in order to extend the appropriate privileges, exemptions, and immunities to the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL), it is hereby ordered that Executive Order 12425 of June 16, 1983, as amended, is further amended by deleting from the first sentence the words “except those provided by Section 2(c), Section 3, Section 4, Section 5, and Section 6 of that Act” and the semicolon that immediately precedes them.

    President Reagan’s original EO text, modified with Obama’s new deletions, now reads as follows (bold is mine):

    By virtue of the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and statutes of the United States, including Section 1 of the International Organizations Immunities Act (59 Stat. 669, 22 U.S.C. 288), it is hereby ordered that the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL), in which the United States participates pursuant to 22 U.S.C. 263a, is hereby designated as a public international organization entitled to enjoy the privileges, exemptions and immunities conferred by the International Organizations Immunities Act; except those provided by Section 2(c), the portions of Section 2(d) and Section 3 relating to customs duties and federal internal-revenue importation taxes, Section 4, Section 5, and Section 6 of that Act. This designation is not intended to abridge in any respect the privileges, exemptions or immunities which such organization may have acquired or may acquire by international agreement or by Congressional action.

    So Obama got rid of ALL of Reagan’s exceptions, making INTERPOL a fully privileged entity (i.e., “appropriate” to Obama means “full”). An almost up-to-date list of “Public International Organizations Entitled To Enjoy Certain Privileges, Exemptions, and Immunities” is here.

    What compelling, undisclosed, undiscussed, undebated, unexplained need motivated this action?

    A key point, followed by a conclusion, at Threatswatch:

    Section 2c of the United States International Organizations Immunities Act is the crucial piece.

    “Property and assets of international organizations, wherever located and by whomsoever held, shall be immune from search, unless such immunity be expressly waived, and from confiscation. The archives of international organizations shall be inviolable.”

    In light of what we know and can observe, it is our logical conclusion that President Obama’s Executive Order amending President Ronald Reagans’ 1983 EO 12425 and placing INTERPOL above the United States Constitution and beyond the legal reach of our own top law enforcement is a precursor to more damaging moves.

    Unless someone has a defensible alternative conclusion, I would say that’s the default. Even if the conclusion is wrong, the move itself is damaging enough

    • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

      Now if it had been that nasty old Bush gang who did this under the Patriot Act, well then you might see some outrage but with beloved leader, nary a blip on the radar. It must, after all, be for a good cause.

      Is this where Santa says Ho!, Ho!, Ho!

      • I thoughtthe same thing. I love how this sort of thing is always done under the cover of some other outrage. While most Americans were watching our health care system be targeted for destruction, Dear Reader signed away some more of our legal protection. I suspect we’ll hear something in the not to distant future that will lead back to this.

        • Bottom Line says:

          Like I said…

          “poised”

          • Yeah. I wonder how long we have until the brown and stinky hits the fan?

            • Bottom Line says:

              When indeed. That seems to be one of the big questions.

              “IF?” appears to have already been answered.

              I’m off to the shower, then a party.

              Hope you, and everyone at SUFA, have a happy holiday season.

              • Have Fun! I’m heading out on a snorkeling excursion tihs morning! I hope all of ya’ll are having as much fun as BL and I!

              • Judy Sabatini says:

                There you go again, rubbing in that warm tropical weather, while a lot of us are freezing with snow and cold. LOL!

                Enjoy your self Cyndi

              • HAHA! That wasn’t my intent at all. But if you makes you feel better, the current kicked my ass and I now have a headache and a queesy stomach. I guess I deserve it! 😉 I think I might be done playing outside for the day. Too bad because it really is lovely outside. I’ll send warm tropical thoughts your way Judy!

  11. Merry Christmas to all from our house to yours.

    And somebody please tell me just where are the three wise men when you need them? All we got for Christmas is 535 wise guys . . . .

    • Judy Sabatini says:

      Hi PapaDawg

      Hope your Christmas was good and all is well with you. But, what three wise men are you referring too? I didn’t know any existed.

      Take care

      Judy

      • The Nativity, Judy, the Nativity. You know, in the song about “We Three Kings From The Orient . . .”

  12. It is December 26, and I hope everyone had a great holiday and a very Merry Christmas. We had a very rare white Christmas this year. Only the second one in my 61 years in Fort Worth. We had 3- 8 inches of snow in west Fort Worth and 1-8 inches of snow in Dallas. The amounts varied where you live in the area. It was fun and all the kids liked it. The chill factors were minimal…on the 24th, the chill factors were around zero….(29 degrees and an average 45 mph wind) lots of drifts, black ice…etc. But it is clear today and a great day for….not going to malls…..but some more relaxing days.

    My first Christmas in the last 14 years I was not carrying a weapon. What a concept. That was nice. (Feeling a little melancholy for my bros still in arms around the world).Drinking hot chocolate was nice. So today is going to be relaxing and doing some light chores around the house. Writing a couple of articles. Drinking Dr Pepper….perhaps eat a little chocolate and try not to watch any of the news organizations….perhaps a little chess against the computer.

    So to everyone on here….a tip o’ the Pepper to ya….have a great and wonderful weekend.

    D13

  13. Judy Sabatini says:

    Here’s hoping you all had a wonderful Christmas yesterday, hoping the coming week will be a good one for all.

    Looking forward to our usual chats, debates, arguments, and kidding around with each other in the coming week.

    You all take care.

    Always and Forever

    Judy

  14. Merry Christmas everyone! We have fresh snow in Wisconsin and it is beautiful outside. Enjoying family time and good food and drink; got new spikey-like attachments for my running shoes so I can continue to run outside and try to balance out some of the extra calorie intake!

    Love this time of year and looking forward to watching bowl games and bringing in the New Year.

    All the best to USW and all SUFA contributors and your families!

  15. Some background on gold…

    http://www.financialsense.com/fsu/editorials/schiff/2009/1216.html

    As Good As Gold
    by John Browne, Senior Market Strategist, Euro Pacific Capital | December 16, 2009
    Print
    As the price of gold has pulled back from its recent run up to $1,200, many investors are left to ponder what exactly drives the movement of such an important and financially sensitive commodity.

    Most people are aware that gold prices respond to inflation expectations and that central banks, as the largest holders of gold, are big players in the market. But there is a very murky understanding as to why and how these players affect prices, and what their ultimate goal may be.

    Although I profess no great insight into how central bankers from Bombay, Berlin and Beijing are looking to manage the global gold market, a better understanding of how our current system came to be provides some clue about gold’s recent behavior.

    The First World War was not only catastrophic to an entire generation of Europeans, but it also left the international financial system in tatters. After the war, the great powers met in Rome to re-establish a workable international financial system. The British pound sterling, which had always been fully convertible into gold, was selected as the official ‘reserve currency.’ Then, during the Great Crash of the 1930’s, the collapse of Austrian and German banks triggered a run on sterling for conversion into gold. Unable to withstand the assault, sterling was replaced as the reserve by the U.S. dollar. Although the dollar was also convertible into gold, the Roosevelt administration had limited the risk to the U.S. Treasury by restricting redemption to central banks.

    In 1944, the newly established International Monetary Fund (IMF) selected the U.S dollar as its ‘international reserve asset’, which enshrined a quasi-gold standard to undergird global financial transactions. However, the inflationary policies of most governments caused the market gold price to rise above the official price of $35 an ounce.

    In 1961, as the price of gold drifted higher relative to the dollar, the major central banks formed the London Gold Pool, a ‘gentleman’s club’ to coordinate gold sales in order to stabilize gold prices. But by 1971, the dollar’s devaluation had overwhelmed their coordinated interventions. Ultimately, President Nixon was compelled to break the dollar’s last links to gold by closing the ‘gold window’ to other central banks. For the first time in human history, the world monetary system ‘floated’.

    Since then, major central banks have continued to debase their currencies at pace with the U.S. dollar. In 1978, via the IMF, they moved to demonetize gold, which stood to expose the true inflation rate.

    This was first carried out by massive central bank sales of gold in exchange for Special Drawing Rights (SDR’s) from the IMF. When this failed, the U.S. gained support, in 1999, for the Central Bank Gold Agreement (CBGA) to coordinate the release of central bank gold onto the market.

    Officially, at least, this was meant to prevent central banks from dumping gold. However, it is highly suspicious that these nominally independent central banks would take coordinated action to support the gold price. This is especially true given that they’ve spent the last forty years trying to do the opposite. In my opinion, it is much more likely that the CBGA was designed to covertly time purchases and sales to magnify gold’s price volatility, in order to dissuade investors from holding it over the long term.

    I believe this intervention is the biggest factor currently distorting the gold market. But the precious metals investor should understand that central banks can only pressure the market, not dictate it. Gold will move up as the following dynamics unravel.

    First, the dollar has benefited from its reserve status, which creates demand for dollars to complete various transactions. However, the conditions that put the dollar on the world monetary throne have already changed, and it’s just a matter of time before it is forced to abdicate. Just as French endured as the international diplomatic language long after France waned as a world power, so too is the dollar coasting upon its former glory. When the dollar loses its reserve status, demand for the greenback will evaporate.

    Second, many holders of surplus currency have diversified massively into the euro. But the euro is a tower built on unlevel ground. Already it is showing cracks as Greece, Ireland, Spain, and Portugal exhibit signs of economic failure. What’s more, the EU is about to assume responsibility for basket-case Iceland. If the solvent states of the union succumb to pressure to bail out their weaker neighbors, the euro will lose all of its newfound credibility with investors.

    Third, the U.S government has been successful in distorting the official inflation figures downward, reducing evidence of current inflation. Fortunately for the feds, people tend to think in ‘nominal’ rather than ‘real’ value terms. For example, investors still feel good buying stocks and bonds of American companies in U.S. dollars. They don’t realize that when measured in terms of gold, or real money, the S&P has lost some 20 percent over the past ten years. Over the same period, the U.S. dollar has lost over 280 percent!

    Fourth (and perhaps least understood), the massive inflation already created by the Fed remains hidden within the banking system. As long as banks are able to lend directly to the Fed and Treasury at no risk, they have no incentive to circulate their new dollars. Only when the banks leverage up and lend to industry, or are forced to do so, will the prices for consumer goods skyrocket.

    Finally, by changing accounting standards for the banks’ toxic assets and making self-congratulatory pronouncements, the government has created the impression that crisis has been averted and faith restored in paper currencies. This feeling of relief is flawed fundamentally. It will not be long before investors are brought to the devastating realization that true recovery from a credit boom requires tightening and recession – that Washington did not avert catastrophe, but ensured it.

    As these dynamics unravel, the full consequences of U.S. profligacy will be felt around the world. The central bankers could sign any agreement they wish but it won’t stem the meteoric rise of gold. By then, investors will understand that those left holding dollars will be left holding the bill.

  16. A belated and very happy Christmas to all of you from me 😉

    The mood is right
    The spirits up
    We’re here tonight
    And that’s enough

    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time
    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time

    The party’s on
    The feeling’s here
    That only comes
    This time of year

    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time
    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time

    The choir of children sing their song
    Ding dong, ding dong
    Ding dong, ding Ohhhh
    Ohhhhhhh

    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time
    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time

    The word is out
    About the town
    To lift a glass
    Ahhh don’t look down

    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time
    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time

    The choir of children sing their song
    They practiced all year long
    Ding dong, ding dong
    Ding dong, ding dong
    Ding dong, ding dong

    The party’s on
    The spirits up
    We’re here tonight
    And that’s enough

    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time
    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time

    The mood is right
    The spirits up
    We’re here tonight
    And that’s enough

    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time
    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time
    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time
    Simply having a wonderful Christmas time

    Ohhhhhhhhh
    Ohhhhhhhhh
    Christmas time

  17. Merry Christmas Everyone!

  18. Merry Christmas to All!! 🙂

    I hope that everyone had a great time and enjoyed the time with family and friends. I had a good day as well, despite the weather.

    I would like to take this time to remnd everyone that this is not the best of times for many of our Vets, active or not. Many who struggle with PTSD everyday, this is not the best of times. For those of you who deal with it, only you would know what it feels like. Our Vietnam vets, in many ways, have dealt with it for decades, while many of us only for a much shorter period of time.

    I’m far from immune to this, as is many of my fellow vets. While many pretend to be happy and OK, it’s just a front, especially for those who find themselves alone in life.

    My Pa and I, spent the holiday together, so we wouldn’t be alone. Just US! Nobody else to share this time, because of the long distance of our loved ones, that seem too far away.

    Just don’t feel sad for us, because we have each other, thats a good thing. There are many who have noone, and spent Christmas alone. I wish I could find them, and done something special.

    We, those that always will wish we didn’t know what we know, will forever wish that we didn’t know, but we know. Not the best thing to think of, and when you have family, we can forget for awhile, but can’t forget at all.

    It just is. No changing it. It never goes away for those who have lost a part of their life to it. It’s changed the lives of many here, forever.

    A new year is upon us, and the trials and tribulations could be extreme, or they may be nothing. The fight for Liberty, that started 233 years ago, is alive and well, if you want that. Set your goals! 🙂

    Merry Christmas!

    G!

  19. Hi G-Man,

    Thanks for you sacrifice. You will stay in my prayers. I’m glad you had a nice time with yor dad. I’m glad you two have each other. I hope that continues for many years to come!

  20. From American Thinker:

    December 27, 2009
    Engineers, Scientific and Social
    By Jim Gammon & Admiral Ben Moreell
    On January 14, 1953, the chairman of Jones & Laughlin Steel Corp. spoke at the annual meeting of the Society of Automotive Engineers in Detroit. He was Admiral Ben Moreell, and in 1953, most people in the audience would have known him as a founder and leader of the Seabees — the U.S. Navy component that built the docks, the airports, and just about everything else our military forces needed to fight and win World War II, often working under fire.

    The speech Moreell gave that day is quite simply stunning. It is among the most remarkable talks about human nature, and the nature of government, ever delivered by anyone, anywhere. It rises above politics, as all serious discussions on human life ought to (but lately do not).

    Although written more than fifty years ago, it is relevant today — maybe even more so. You be the judge. While he never mentions politics, this is a must-read for every Conservative and a challenge to the foundations of every Liberal.

    I came across the speech while rummaging through some of my father’s old boxes. My dad is 87 now, and he was in that audience when Admiral Moreell spoke. He was so impressed that he contacted the Admiral afterward and asked for a copy of the text, which is what I found.

    Please read the speech and pass it along as widely as you can.

    -Jim Gammon

    ADDRESS BY ADMIRAL BEN MOREELL

    CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD, JONES & LAUGHLIN STEEL CORPORATION

    To the

    SOCIETY OF AUTOMOTIVE ENGINEERS

    1953 ANNUAL MEETING

    JANUARY 14, 1953

    DETROIT, MICHIGAN

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    ENGINEERS – SCIENTIFIC AND SOCIAL

    Tonight I would like to talk with you about engineers and their significance to our economic and social structures.

    My dictionary defines engineering as “the art and science by which the properties of matter and the sources of power in nature are made useful to man in structures, and manufactured products.”

    We engineers have learned that our unceasing efforts to perfect this art and science are essential for the improvement of our material standards of living. And I believe that we may, with due modesty, point with pride to our professional achievements.

    However, my purpose tonight is not to give an accounting of the good works of scientific engineers. For I believe that we should now be more concerned with a “pseudo-engineering” that is developing to an alarming extent among us – a kind of engineering which is quite different from that “science by which the properties of matter are made useful to man.” I refer to the profession of “social engineering”, whose practitioners are known as “social engineers”.

    A MASTER PLAN

    These social engineers – who appear to be more numerous and, at the moment, far more powerful, than we scientific engineers – are dedicated to the thesis that, by using the force of government, mankind in the mass can be changed and molded to conform to a master plan, in much the same way that engineering materials can be processed in accordance with preconceived designs.

    We scientific engineers have the unchanging laws of chemistry, physics, and the other natural sciences to guide our efforts. By means of those laws, when we come to understand them, we can predict the behavior of the materials and forces of nature. But the social engineers either know nothing of nature’s immutable laws, or choose to ignore them. Instead, they have their man-made and variable laws of compulsions, prohibitions, and other restrictions on the free actions of individuals. By means of these, they claim, they can compel the behavior of men in a manner that will redound to the good of mankind.

    We scientific engineers recognize that the materials we use and the laws we follow come from the Creator – a Power of which man himself is but an infinitesimal manifestation – and that these materials may be used and these laws observed to the advantage of mankind. The “raw material” used by the social engineers is all of mankind itself – and the laws and rules which they follow some from no source other than their desire to remold humanity in their chosen images. Scientific engineers process their raw materials to create products for the service of mankind. Social engineers use their raw material – human beings – to create products designed to serve and please their own fancy – and frequently to satisfy their craving for personal power. And often they do this by appealing to the baser traits of man – laziness, greed, selfishness and irresponsibility.

    PLANS AND EXPERIMENTS

    We scientific engineers do extensive planning and experimenting. We construct models in order to obtain date with which to predict the behavior of the full-scale prototype.

    Social engineers also are given to extensive planning and experimenting. They, too, construct models in order to secure a better idea of how they may control the full-scale project. For example, in 1933 practically an entire State, with all of its people – Tennessee – was selected for what was called “a pilot plant” and “a yardstick”. I refer to the Tennessee Valley Authority, a project to which its “social engineer in charge” proudly referred as “a seamless web – the unity of land and water and men”, all under his direct authority.

    The Chief of the Woman’s Auxiliary of the Social Engineers is famed for her experiments with model villages and other “social reforms”. From these she moved into the Planning Division of the United Nations where – is collaboration with the master social engineers of other nations – she has been busily planning to apply her experiments on a world-wide basis.

    Social engineers who have worked in the field of agriculture have, at various times, set aside tracts of land and all of their inhabitants for test projects. Then, satisfied that they had produced a happier, healthier, and more perfect human being, they have returned to Washington and attempted to place into operation a master plan to transform all of mankind by use of the force of government.

    They have built model housing developments. The occupants are carefully selected, house-broken, and taught to conform to certain behavior patterns. If the operation of the models and the conduct of the people placed in them are pleasing to the planners, they demand from government the power to force many others to conform to the standards they have set – standards which they claim will reduce crime, improve morality, and develop a better society. But, actually, experience has shown that almost always the ultimate effects are the direct opposite of those which they claim.

    These self-anointed friends of humanity are deeply concerned about your health, your diet, your attitude toward other people, your business, and your job. Ins short, they believe in government-forced control of man in relation to his wages, hours, working conditions, prices, savings, insurance, drinking habits, entertainment, and a host of other problems that every person must face in his daily living.

    THE RIGHT TO PLAN

    Now, I do not deny to any person the right to make any plan be chooses – whether it be a plan to fly to the moon or a plan to create a superior human being. But I do deny the planner the right to force me, or any other person, to conform to his plan.

    We scientific engineers do not need laws to force people to adopt our plans or to buy our products. I believe that each of us s willing to leave the decision to the competitive market where all persons have complete freedom to buy or not to buy, to join or not to join, to invest or not to invest.

    But these would-be managers-at-large of society are not willing to extend freedom of choice to others than themselves. They must have the power of government — the police force – behind their plans or they are helpless. They know that in almost all cases a free people in a free market would reject their wares. That is why they want to abolish the market economy and force people to conform to their plans or to suffer the penalty of fines and imprisonment.

    For example, I am an unwilling “stockholder” in the Tennessee Valley Authority. I continue to pay money into that project for the simple reason that the police force will use violence upon me should I refuse. I am willing to sell my share of TVA, and of all similar welfare projects, at a large discount. In fact, I would give my equity to these humanitarians if they would only stop forcing me to subsidize their schemes.

    They claim they can “prove conclusively” that the Tennessee Valley Authority is a great financial success which regularly returns a profit to the people of America. If this so, why do they come to Congress almost every year for additional appropriations? Why do they not offer stock in the open market where the people can have a choice?

    The answer is simple: A free people would reject the stock. If this were not so, there would have been no reason to make their participation compulsory in the first instance.

    These promoters with the public purse have been planning a Missouri Valley Authority and various other such authorities for many years. And they have been using your money to propagandize the gullible into believing that the projects are economically sound; that they will pay back far more than they cost. If this is so, why do they demand that the police force, government, recruit their stockholders?

    GOOD INTENTIONS

    Now, these social busy-bodies may have the best intentions in the world. Their personal lives may be above reproach. Their primary motive may be only too “do good for the people”. I question neither their intentions nor their sincerity. But I do question their basic belief that good can be accomplished through the use of violence. To illustrate my point, let us consider the French Revolution. The people rebelled against a government that forced them to conform to its decrees on wages, prices, profits, employment, housing, and similar matters.

    Now, it would be logical to suppose that the revolters against a government of favoritism would reject favoritism and entrust their social and economic relationships to a market and a society where freedom of choice was controlling.

    It is true that some effort was made in this direction in the early stages of the French Revolution. But soon there came to power Robespierre – a man of unquestioned personal integrity and habits – a dedicated humanitarian. He became the foremost “social engineer” of his day. Here is his master plan for re-creating the people of France:

    “In our country,” he said, “we desire to establish morality, honesty, principles, duties, reason, contempt of vice, pride, greatness of soul, love of glory, good people, merit, genius, truth, happiness, greatness of man, generosity, strength – in short, we desire to substitute all the virtues of a republic for all the vices of a monarchy”.

    Who can disagree with those noble objectives? Certainly, I do not, any more than I disagree with those of most of our own social planners. But Robespierre had no faith in people. He rejected any thought that the people would develop those desirable virtue by the use of violence; to use the power of government to force all people to conform to his plan for making them better. He became known as the “humanitarian with the guillotine”. Those who refused to conform to his concepts of morality and economic behavior were fined or imprisoned or executed.

    When it came his own turn to bow to the guillotine, his defense was that of all humanitarians who rely on the force of government for the accomplishment of their good works. He said that his every act had been “for the good of the people”; that he was only trying to help them to peace, prosperity, and happiness.

    ADOLF HITLER: SOCIAL ENGINEER

    And so it is with all social engineers, including Hitler, Stalin, and our domestic brand. Hitler looked upon people as clay to be molded to his purposes. Some of this clay – human beings – did not meet his specifications. So he destroyed it in much the same manner that a scientific engineer discards defective material. His program of social reform allowed little freedom of choice. He used the force of government to regulate wages, prices, profits, working conditions, unions, rents, housing, education, medical services, social security, production, and a host of other vital matters. And he, too, repeatedly announced that all these things ere being done for “the good of all the people”. That is the familiar chant of these “public benefactors”. The dictator who “liquidates” a group of persons is practicing social engineering – as is the public official who takes money from one group of citizens and gives it to another group – in the form of public housing or some other socially “useful” project.

    Both are doing what they say is “best for the people as a whole”. They may differ in their approach, but if you think that our domestic brand is any less determined than the variety, just try deducting from your tax bill your share of the cost of socialized housing in America. First, you will be fined. If you refuse to pay the fine, you will be sentenced to prison. If you resist the officer who is sent to arrest you – well, just what does happen in our country to persons who resist arrest?

    RELIGION AND SOCIAL ENGINEERS

    Now you may ask: Did our great religious teachers practice social engineering? Was Jesus a social engineer? Recalling that I have defined social engineers as those who would re-make mankind in the mass by using the force of government, my answer is an emphatic no. For Jesus always appealed only to individuals. He asked that each one make a voluntary choice to follow God’s way. He said to the individual, “The Kingdom of God is within you. “That is, it does not lie in the group, or in the mob, or in the vote of the majority, but in the individual himself. Nor did Jesus ever appeal, or even suggest an appeal, to the force of government for the accomplishment of good works. Instead, He appealed to each person to reform himself, that he might be born again. He recognized no such thing as “group morality”. Rather, He taught that each individual must eventually answer personally for his own deeds of commission and omission, form which it follows that no one can divest himself of his responsibility by hiding it behind someone else or even behind our collective agent – government.

    THE AUTHORITY IDEA

    All social engineers are devotees of the pagan concept of authority. Their every action show clearly that they do not believe that freedom as a way of life will work.

    They believe inherently that free mane cannot possibly be adequately housed, clothed, or fed. By their actions they show clearly that they consider themselves superior in intelligence to the rest of us. For our own good they desire to force the rest of us to live and act and think as they believe we should.

    Since they assume for themselves a higher degree of intelligence and morality than the rest of us, I suggest that we examinee their credentials. Who has commissioned them to use us as raw material, to be molded as they see fit? Surely no such commission could be valid unless it were signed by the Almighty Himself. Apparently no social engineer ever stops to consider that this raw material he is remolding is composed of human beings – creatures of God, created in God’s image. Or, if he does think about it, apparently he concludes that God’s work should be improved upon. It is my belief that God intended men to be free to make their own decisions and to be responsible for the consequences of those decisions. Thus it seems to me that it is an act against God for men to pass laws which destroy individual liberty; which force some persons to conform to the ideas and plans of other persons; which deprive persons of the responsibility for their own acts and for their own welfare.

    It seems to me that there is convincing evidence to support my beliefs on this subject. And the basic evidence is found in the fact that no person is physically or mentally or morally identical to any other person. For example, we know that the fingerprints of all persons are different. And these differences – these individualities, these inequalities – carry through all the physical, mental, and moral characteristics of mankind.

    THE LAW OF NATURE

    This inequality among persons is a law of nature – law which is just as unchangeable and just as necessary to understand as is any other natural law, as, for example, the law of gravity. This particular law is known as the “law of variation”, and from the unrestricted operation of this law comes all human progress. The law of variation permits children to be different from their parents. It permits brothers to think differently and to act differently. It permits the existence of both miser and philanthropists, saints and sinners, rich and poor. It is the foundation for all conceivable human relationships. These natural variations underlie all commerce and trade and exchanges of any kind – including all the aspects of social and economic life within a society.

    The law of variation permits inventors to invent, managers to manage, and scientific engineers to improve the material well-being of mankind. It permits each person to seek a job or profession which is most suited to his natural talents and his desires. It encourages a voluntary division of labor, with resulting maximum efficiency and greater prosperity for all. Without this variation – this unequalness – our social structure would be similar to that of an anthill or a beehive, where each member is born to do a certain predetermined job, which he does with blind allegiance to his society and with no consideration of personal interests or preferences.

    EQUALITY AND POSSESSIONS

    The slogan of the social engineer is “equality” and the tools he proposes to use to bring this about are the compulsions and prohibitions of government. But what does he mean by equality? Certainly I am not equal to anyone else. I frequently meet persons who are my superior in intelligence, in morality, in health, and in material possessions. By equality does he mean that we should all have equal intelligence? If so, his arguments should be directed to God. If not equality of intelligence, does he mean that one of the most important by-products of intelligence – material possessions – should be equalized? Or, if he merely intends that some degree of equality of possessions should be achieved, just what degree does he have in mind? If his concept of equality is what he chooses to call “adequate” housing for all, then does not the same principle apply to adequate clothing, food, medical care, entertainment, education, and work for all? And should we not have adequate religious training for all? Surely he does not intend to leave that vital subject to chance! In due time I am quite sure that he will get around to controlling that, too.

    When the social engineer uses his compulsions to establish equality or “adequateness” in one area, he may deny vehemently that he intends to establish it elsewhere. In fact, he usually does issue such a denial. But it never works that way. Once it is conceded that people should be forced to conform to the ideas of others, there is no principle on which we can rely to deny the same authority in any area.

    EQUALITY AND LAW

    It seems to me that the only equality we can logically expect is equality before the law. In that event, no person would be subsidized at the expense of another. There could be no subsidies – for if every person were equal before the law, then the law could not take from some in order to give to others. If we were all equal before the law, there would automatically be a free market wherein no person could use the law to force upon ant other person his concepts of wages, prices, or anything else.

    Equality before the law means that no person may steal from another person, defame him, defraud him, injure him, or coerce him in any way. Equality before the law cannot exist until the law recognizes the right of every person to the possessions he has honestly acquired in a free society. There is no equality as long as the law takes from one person against his will to give to another person who has not earned it.

    RESPONSIBILITY AND SECURITY

    In my opinion, the greatest evil of our times is that so many of us are trying to impose on others our ideas as to how they should live their lives. And when they fail to behave as we think they should, we are tempted to resort to coercion – acting through or agent – government. We apparently see no incongruity in the question, “How can you do good for the people if you just let them alone?”

    We need not go beyond our own recent history to find examples of the demoralizing effect of depriving people of the personal responsibility of being free. In response to the urging of our social engineers, many Americans are trying to avoid this responsibility by voting for men who promise to install a system of “government-guaranteed security”, a partial return to the old slave laws of some of our Southern States that guaranteed to all slaves “the right to food and raiment, to kind attention when sick, to maintenance in old age.” And the arguments used in defense of this present-day trend toward the bondage of a welfare state are essentially the same as those used formerly to defend the bondage of outright slavery.

    For example, many of the slaveholders claimed to know what was “best for the slaves”. After all, hadn’t they “rescued” the slaves from a life of savagery? Our social reformers who advocate “government-guaranteed security” also claim that they know what is best for the people and they say, “After all, haven’t the American people shown conclusively that they are incapable of handling the responsibility for their own welfare?”

    Many of the slaveholders believed sincerely that the “dumb, ignorant slaves” would starve to death unless their welfare were guaranteed by the masters. And the social engineers say, “Are you in favor of letting people starve?”

    But let us consider the emancipated slaves. Many of them were old or crippled or sick. They had no homes, no jobs, and very little education, but – most precious of all – they were free. They were responsible for their own welfare. They had the privilege of finding their own security.

    Now, compare the remarkable progress of those former slaves to the lack of progress of the American Indians who have been made wards of the government; who were given state-guaranteed “security” instead of freedom with responsibility. In 1862 most American negroes were slaves. Today they are about as self-supporting and responsible as other American citizens. And in the meantime the Indians, as group, have become less self-supporting and more dependent on government. It has even been claimed that many thousands of Indians will die of starvation unless the government feeds them. If this is true, why is it so?

    MISUSE OF RESOURCES

    I am aware that many social engineers justify their projects by pointing with horror to some instances of the misuse of human and natural resources in the market economy as it developed in the Western World. I freely admit and decry those abuses. My studies indicate that they were possible only because one group of citizens was able to obtain special favor from government at the expense of others – i.e., government failed in its basic duty to protect the rights of all citizens equally. However, I see no justification in such past errors for setting up other privileged groups and thus prolonging this process which has proved so corrosive to the public morals.

    I am sure few will deny that, over the years, there has been a steady, substantial, and voluntary improvement in our social consciousness and behavior. I hold that our sloe hope for continued progress in this area lies in the improvement by the individual of his own moral stature so that he will know what is right and want to do it, voluntarily, not be granting, by votes or otherwise, ever-increasing power and dominion to social engineers to regulate and control our lives, our morals, and our property. That we are justified in expecting even greater developments in morals in evidenced by the current tremendous outpourings of financial and other support for our churches, our charities, our educational institutions, our hospitals, and many other benefactions. The total of the new contributions each year, i.e., not including income on investments, is now estimated to be well in excess of four billion dollars! There is no dearth of beneficence here. Our great error is a lack of confidence in the voluntary acts of free people.

    A philosopher friend recently summarized this subject in the following cogent words: “An incalculable amount of harm has been done by those who have gone fourth to reform society. As a matter of fact, there is no way of reforming society except by making individuals better. And no one can make individuals better except the individual himself. If you want to be a reformer, reform yourself. That will keep you busy for a while and lend encouragement to others. Then, when there are significant numbers of transformed individuals, society will be reformed, but not before.”

    • Good Stuff, Birdman. Thanks for posting. How are you today?

      • I’m doing good. Today is my son’s birthday. He’s 20 today.

        How is your vacation going? I think you went to some island east of where you are. Hope everything is good for you.

        • Happy Birthday to your son!

          My vacation doesn’t start until tomorrow. That’s when I’ll fly to Pohnpei. I’m looking forward to the change of scenery and some shopping. I hope I can talk to some of the American business men that are there. I wonder how the economy is affecting them. Also, I wonder what the Chinese government is up to over there. There are rumors of more ‘activity’ in this neighborhood of the Pacific. I was reading something on AT this morning and some of the commenters were discussing China making a move on Taiwan, with one saying sooner rather than later. That could be a big game changer here. All I can say is that I don’t want to be here when the Chinese government moves in. I think Dear Reader will leaves us to twist in the wind.

    • SK Trynosky Sr. says:

      Birdman, Sir,

      Thank you very much for that one. I guess the speech was “lost” all these years because it came out in the “McCarthy” period. You remember that time, that’s when the US targeted collectivists who just happened to be in lockstep with the biggest murders of the 20th century but of course that was all for a good cause and therefore excusable.

      It is amazing to me how we ignore those with a true scientific mind who base their conclusions on following the scientific method.

      I guess why that mantra of my Dad’s sticks with me, not a scientist but a man who loved science. “What I know trumps how you feel or what you think”.

      Again, thanks, I already shot it out to about 60 people.

      • SK:

        I saved it to MicroSoft Word and fixed some of the typos. It’s a great speech. I really liked it and he is right in the bullseye.

    • Hey Birdman, I hope you don’t mind but I copied it and put it on my blog. That was given when I was about ten years old and my favorite brother was in a North Korean POW camp.

      Oh how we have failed to learn from the learned!

      • Copy and distribute to as many as possible. It would be great if someone with a booming voice, like James Earl Jones, would read a speech like this and post it on YouTube.

  21. A Puritan Descendant says:

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

    I know you must all be bored with no articles from USW. I slapped a little something together for you to feed on to rip to shreds. I tried to not be so crude this time, sri. Have fun.

    We descend from a time when men were men. A time of Woman of Virtue. A time when Individual responsibility was prefered over dependence on Tyranny.

    Today much has changed. Much of America is living by choice in a sad state. People choose to live lives in homes with little or no land. Often dependent on others for there own well being. No chance to raise there own food. No chance to care for a productive woodland of lumber and firewood, orchard, farm or any land based enterprise. No worry of excess tyranical government regulations and control. What lives do they have other than their latest electronic toys? How do they not go mad? Isn’t it much the same as prison with just a few added benifits? It may seem good they keep these lives and leave worldly abundance for the truly living, right? Not so! These same, think nothing of voting for tyranny for false security. Never realising the chains they place on themselves, giving away any remaining opportunities for freedoms and liberty they may have left. I know what I speak of as I used to live in such a place. So so sad, yet they have no desire to flee to a better life.

    What can become of a nation of people with no desire or motivation to create REAL wealth, but instead demand the right to only consume endlessly. A nation of people who scoff at the institution of marriage, leaving children with disposable parents. These same children likely to become filled with anger and a distructive societal attitude. A nation of people with no desire or vision as to what it takes to make a prosperous family business taking generations to develop. A nation of “I WANT and DEMAND IT NOW” attiude. A nation of people with no discipline.

    These people point out all the negatives of American tradition, sadly missing it’s own hard fought self corrections. The hate America crowd works tirelessly to bring America down. They infest the internet forums with all forms of twisted warped logic. Far removed from a constitutional foundation based on freedom and liberty for all. Far removed from our Christian foundation which, right or wrong, gave people a moral base if they lacked a natural moral base to begin with.

    • Hey PD!

      I think you could have been much more crude on this subject. I see what your post says everyday where I currently reside, but have thoroughly enjoyed growing a garden, canning veggies, hunting for the mysterious Whitetail deer, harvesting same, and then preparing and canning the meat for the future.

      The cuurrent fabric of the American innercity folk is deplorable at best, they have no idea what evils have been thrust upon them because of their own lack of moral code, and just plain stupidity. These folks will suffer the worst when those with a strong moral code and a insatiable desire for freedom rise up and say “NO MORE”.

      We may be witnessing the beginning of the next great American Revolution, and I fear it will not be pretty.

      Good post! 🙂

      G!

  22. Hi everyone,

    Any comments on the attempted act of terrorism on the Northwest Airlines flight into Detroit?

    Detroit Metro Airport is not located in Detroit, but 30 miles southwest of the city in a small community of 25000. It is small town USA. I live 1.5 miles from the airport right under the inbound flight path. Needless to say, we here are very aware of the story and not liking it. But there is nothing we can do about it.

    G-Man, I also have a “location”, a travel trailer on 1.5 acres on a lake in the woods 50 miles from here. I’m sure you are more prepared than I am but if need be, I’ll make it.

    Between the terrorists and our congress the American Dream is gone. We have to turn this around. What is so hard to understand? I don’t get it. Sorry for the rant, but geez, life really isn’t as hard as people make it.

    • Hi Anita,

      Your comment about life not being as hard as people make it, reminds me of something I used to say to my now ex-husband. “Life is tough. Its tougher when you’re stupid”. I swear that man is his own worst enemy.

      As forthe latest attempt at mass murder, the sheep will accept that the guy was mentally ill. Then they’ll go back to sleep.

      How’s your son in law in HI? Is he still on alert? Dear Reader is in HI, maybe that’s why the Marines had to hang around for the Holidays?

      • Hey Cyndi,

        My daughter and son-in-law are right here under my roof. YAY!! Made for a wonderful Christmas. No national emergency so he was able to take his leave. His unit is still on stand-by though. He had busy jobs to prepare for Dear Reader’s arrival in HI but was able to skip out on Christmas Eve. He’s thankful for not being there right now. Thanks for asking.

        • Cyndi,

          I think we have the same ex!

          • HAHA! You’ve got my empathy, Girl! Better luck next time, eh?

            🙂

            BTW, have you or anyone else been to Atlas Shrugged today? The Iranian people seem to be in full revolt. I said a prayer for them. I hope they suceed!

            • The unrest is driven by, generally, those that support the Shah and his policies – the elite.

              These are people who Twitter and blog and are born into the more wealthier classes that benefit from mercantilism.

              These are not representative of 95% of Iranians.

              The Revolution that overthrew the Shah was a revolt of the common, over the elite.

              The reverse will not occur until the people in the street see advantage.

              • How did the revolt of the common come to be controlled by the clerics? What do 95% of Iranians want? Did their movement get hijacked?

    • You mean the Nigerian Muslim that was acting so radically that his own father reported him to the US Embassy? Naw, nothing to see there. No connection between his peaceful religion and his attempt at man-made destruction.

      And the second Nigerian who bolted himself in another NW/Delta flight today from Amsterdam? Just a sick passenger.

      How dare we think otherwise…….

  23. For those that insist on ‘something to do’,
    here is an idea.

    I do not suggest that this is a good idea, but I also would not dismiss this as a strategy.

    http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=187345069018

    10,000,000 People NOT To Pay Their Income Tax On Or Before April 15.

    • Bottom Line says:

      If the government cannot control 30 million illegal immigrants, …then how can they possibly control 307 million American citizens?

      Control is an illusion.

      “Worker bees can leave.
      Even drones can fly away.
      The Queen is their slave”

      • BL,

        I get the feeling the government doesn’t want to control illegal immigrants. They’d much rather control 307 million Americans who are mostly law abiding. I hope that the well known government incompetence will let some of those escape.

  24. And we thought all those late Friday afternoon announcements were underhanded. This even tops those:

    US uncaps Fannie/Freddie support, announces during Christmas holiday……

    http://hotair.com/archives/2009/12/26/us-uncaps-fanniefreddie-support-announces-during-christmas-holiday/

    What a costly week this has been for taxpayers. Hope you all didn’t spend much on Christmas gifts!

    • Bottom Line says:

      Kathy – “What a costly week this has been for taxpayers.”

      tax-“payers” indeed.

      Refer to #23.

  25. Cyndi,

    How did the revolt of the common come to be controlled by the clerics? What do 95% of Iranians want? Did their movement get hijacked?

    The Shah and the CIA’s SAVAK created two classes of politics and destroyed the third.

    They destroyed the moderates – either you were on the Shah’s side supporting dictatorship or you were destroyed by SAVAK.

    Only the clerics had the ‘guts’ to stand up to the Shah – they were unafraid of mortal suffering.

    The people organized themselves around only what was left – the clerics … or the Shah. And the Shah made entry into his circle very difficult.

    The revolution could only come from the leadership of clerics.

    95% of Iranians want the West out of the region. The endless manipulations of Western powers has polluted the politics of the region from the Med to the Indian ocean up to the Caspian Sea.

    As far as inside Iran, it is very complicated. The Clerics are making themselves rich – like all politicians – by feeding off the people. The people want a return to a moral, uncorrupted government.

    They do not see that returning to the Shah will give that – no matter how many Twitter it on the internet.

    They do not see that the clerics are delivering that either.

    And the man who is walking between that is a President the West calls the new Hitler.

    What a mess.

  26. Judy Sabatini says:

    Hey everybody.

    Just wanted to say hi, and I hope all had a good Christmas.

    And Flag, about that thing where nobody pays income taxes for this coming April and what would they do. I can tell what they do. They take it out of ones social security check is what they do. It’s happening to my husband right now. He forgot to pay his 2007 income taxes and now they are taking their share out of it. He thought he had paid it, but apparently not, so now he’s paying it back through his monthly check. Taking $228 to pay off $5000.

    So, what say you about that one? Just thought I’d let you know that and what you think about that.

    Hope you’re all having a a good Sunday or what’s left of it.

    • The hand the giveth taketh away.

      • Judy Sabatini says:

        WHAT??????? You lost me there Flag.

        • Those who depend on the largess of government suffer its deprivations as well.

          • Judy Sabatini says:

            You’re not saying he doesn’t deserve it, are you? After all, he’s worked over 40 years and paid into it. He’s been working since he was 18 years old, and he’ll be 63 the 31st of next month.

            Sometimes I have a hard time understanding you and what you’re saying. I looked up both words, but that didn’t help me any. Too much legality it looks like tome.

            See, this is what I meant when I said, You have a way of saying things to where I can understand, but your answer above I can’t. Help me please.

            I also meant to tell you the other day, that not only do I feel blessed in getting to know you Flag, but I also learn a great deal from you. Remember you are my teacher and I am the student if I can’t understand something, and that’s why I ask, to have you help too.

            • Simply, when one depends on government, in the end, it is always disappointing.

              It is not a judgment of you at all, but an observation of mine proven true almost all the time.

  27. Judy Sabatini says:

    A friend just sent me this, and I thought I’d post it here.

    Bill Cosby has done it again…

    My Philosophy exactly!

    BACK TO CASH AND CARRY WOULD HELP ALSO!

    Bill Cosby has a great way of “distilling” things. Looks like he’s done it again!

    AMERICA NEEDS A CANDIDATE WITH THIS PLATFORM!!

    I HAVE DECIDED TO BECOME A WRITE-IN CANDIDATE FOR PRESIDENT IN THE YEAR 2012..

    HERE IS MY PLATFORM:

    (1). Any use of the phrase: ‘Press 1 for English’ is immediately banned. English is the official language; speak it or wait outside of our borders until you can.

    (2). We will immediately go into a two year isolationist attitude in order to straighten out the greedy big business posture in this country. America will allow NO imports, and we’ll do no exports. We will use the ‘Wal-Mart ‘s policy, ‘If we ain’t got it, you don’t need it.’ We’ll make it here and sell it here!

    (3). When imports are allowed, there will be a 100% import tax on it coming in here.

    (4). All retired military personnel will be required to man one of the many observation towers located on the southern border of the United States (six month tour). They will be under strict orders not to fire on SOUTHBOUND aliens.

    (5). Social Security will immediately return to its original state. If you didn’t put nuttin in, you ain’t gettin nuttin out. Neither the President nor any other politician will be able to touch it.

    (6). Welfare. — Checks will be handed out on Fridays, at the end of the 40 hour school week, the successful completion of a urinalysis test for drugs, and passing grades.

    (7). Professional Athletes — Steroids? The FIRST time you check positive you’re banned from sports … for life.

    (8). Crime — We will adopt the Turkish method, i.e.., the first time you steal, you lose your right hand. There is no more ‘life sentences’.. If convicted of murder, you will be put to death by the same method you chose for the victim you killed: gun, knife, strangulation, etc.

    (9). One export of ours will be allowed: wheat; because the world needs to eat. However, a bushel of wheat will be the exact price of a barrel of oil.

    (10). All foreign aid, using American taxpayer money, will immediately cease and the saved money will help to pay off the national debt and, ultimately, lower taxes. When disasters occur around the world, we’ll ask The American People if they want to donate to a disaster fund, and each citizen can make the decision as to whether, or not, it’s a worthy cause.

    (11). The Pledge of Allegiance will be said every day at school and every day in Congress.

    (12). The National Anthem will be played at all appropriate ceremonies, sporting events, outings, etc.

    My apology is offered if I’ve stepped on anyone’s toes …. nevertheless….

    GOD BLESS AMERICA!

    Sincerely, Bill Cosby

    • (1). Any use of the phrase: ‘Press 1 for English’ is immediately banned. English is the official language; speak it or wait outside of our borders until you can.

      Who has the right to tell me what language I speak, or wish to speak to whomever wishes to buy from me?

      It’s just good business to speak the language of your customers.

      Some phony coming in and telling me I can’t speak with my customers IN THEIR LANGUAGE needs to mind his own business.

      (2). We will immediately go into a two year isolationist attitude in order to straighten out the greedy big business posture in this country. America will allow NO imports, and we’ll do no exports. We will use the ‘Wal-Mart ’s policy, ‘If we ain’t got it, you don’t need it.’ We’ll make it here and sell it here!

      Ah, so increase the price of everything you wish to buy by 200%.

      Good economic plan.

      Who has the right to tell me what to buy? If I like Chinese goods, why can’t I buy them?

      Why do you believe you can force me to buy your expensive and crappy stuff?

      (3). When imports are allowed, there will be a 100% import tax on it coming in here.

      Will that apply to oil? Good luck!

      (4). All retired military personnel will be required to man one of the many observation towers located on the southern border of the United States (six month tour). They will be under strict orders not to fire on SOUTHBOUND aliens.

      Indeed, kill a non-violent man who wants to work – good economic plan if you want a police state

      (5). Social Security will immediately return to its original state. If you didn’t put nuttin in, you ain’t gettin nuttin out. Neither the President nor any other politician will be able to touch it.

      SS is dead. $55 trillion shortfall. There is nuttin’ in it to get somthin’ outta it

      (6). Welfare. — Checks will be handed out on Fridays, at the end of the 40 hour school week, the successful completion of a urinalysis test for drugs, and passing grades.

      Why not eliminate them all together then?

      (7). Professional Athletes — Steroids? The FIRST time you check positive you’re banned from sports … for life.

      Who has the right to determine what I do or do not use in my own body?

      If you don’t like the game, don’t pay to see it!

      (8). Crime — We will adopt the Turkish method, i.e.., the first time you steal, you lose your right hand. There is no more ‘life sentences’.. If convicted of murder, you will be put to death by the same method you chose for the victim you killed: gun, knife, strangulation, etc.

      And, when you strangle an innocent man, will you accept your own punishment upon yourself?

      (9). One export of ours will be allowed: wheat; because the world needs to eat. However, a bushel of wheat will be the exact price of a barrel of oil.

      The economics of a mindless crackpot

      (10). All foreign aid, using American taxpayer money, will immediately cease and the saved money will help to pay off the national debt and, ultimately, lower taxes. When disasters occur around the world, we’ll ask The American People if they want to donate to a disaster fund, and each citizen can make the decision as to whether, or not, it’s a worthy cause.
      Too bad he doesn’t apply this to all his suggestions – make it up to the individual to chose

      (11). The Pledge of Allegiance will be said every day at school and every day in Congress.
      Ensure loyalty to the State is the highest priority – because the State cares for you – and would never send your kids to die in foreign lands, or bankrupt the nation with moronic economic policies, or steal your productivity and enslave you by taxation. God bless the State!

      (12). The National Anthem will be played at all appropriate ceremonies, sporting events, outings, etc.

      See #11, ibid

      • Damn, Flag. You sure took the wind outta that sail, didn’t you? 😉

        • Cyndi..pay no attention. BF gives no solutions only criticism and platitudes.

          • Yeah, I get that feeling.

            How are you today D13? I’m heading out on my mini vacation later today. I’m looking forward to everything but getting on the airplane. I hear we get pat downs.

            • And don’t dare think of putting a blanket on your lap, because that is of course, the real reason this guy got so close to being successful in bringing down the plane.

              What a bunch of nutcases running the show.

              • I’m more concerned about the new bathroom rules. There are two legs of the flight. Each one of them is just under an hour. Supposedly no one is allowed to use the toilet within an hour of landing. Will I be able to de-plane in Kosrae and use the toilet there???? Does this mean I’ll have to hold it????? All I do is pee…… 😉

          • Ah D13,

            I give very powerful solutions – you just don’t like them.

  28. Judy Sabatini says:

    I thought this was interesting.

    LAUS DEO…. Pass on this important part of America’s History!!

    One detail that is never mentioned is that in Washington, D.C, there can
    never be a building of greater height than the Washington Monument. With all
    the uproar about removing the ten commandments, etc., this is worth a moment
    or two of your time. I was not aware of this amazing historical information.

    On the aluminum cap, atop the Washington Monument in Washington, D.C., are
    displayed two words: Laus Deo.

    No one can see these words… In fact, most visitors to the monument are
    totally unaware they are even there and for that matter, probably couldn’t
    care less.

    Once you know Laus Deo’s history, you will want to share this with everyone
    you know. These words have been there for many years; they are 555 feet,
    5.125 inches high, perched atop the monument, facing skyward to the Father
    of our nation, overlooking the 69 square miles which comprise the District
    of Columbia, capital of the United States of America.

    Laus Deo! Two seemingly insignificant, unnoticed words. Out of sight and,
    one might think, out of mind, but very meaningfully placed at the highest
    point over what is the most powerful city in the most successful nation in
    the world.

    So, what do those two words, in Latin, composed of just four syllables and
    only seven letters, possibly mean? Very simply, they say “Praise be to God!”

    Though construction of this giant obelisk began in 1848, when James Polk was
    President of the United States, it was not until 1888 that the monument was
    inaugurated and opened t o the public. It took twenty-five years to finally
    cap the memorial with a tribute to the Father of our nation, Laus Deo.
    “Praise be to God!”

    From atop this magnificent granite and marble structure, visitors may take
    in the beautiful panoramic view of the city with its division into four
    major segments. From that vantage point, one can also easily see the
    original plan of the designer, Pierre Charles l’Enfant… a perfect cross
    imposed upon the landscape, with the White House to the north. The Jefferson
    Memorial is to the south, the Capitol to the east and the Lincoln Memorial
    to the west.
    A cross you ask? Why a cross? What about separation of church and state?
    Yes, a cross; separation of church and state was not, is not in the
    Constitution So, read on… How interesting and, no doubt, intended to carry
    a profound meaning for those who bother to notice.

    Praise be to God! Within the monument itself are 898 steps and 50 landings.
    As one climbs the steps and pauses at the landings the memorial stones share
    a message… On the 12th Landing is a prayer offered by the City of
    Baltimore; On the 20th is a memorial presented by some Chinese Christians;
    On the 24th a presentation made by Sunday School children from New York and
    Philadelphia quoting Proverbs 10:7, Luke 18:16 and Proverbs 22:6. Praise be
    to God!

    When the cornerstone of the Washington Monument was laid on July 4th, 1848,
    deposited within it were many items including the Holy Bible presented by
    the Bible Society. Praise be to God! Such was the discipline, the moral
    direction, and the spiritual mood given by the founder and first President
    of our unique democracy “One Nation, Under God.”

    I am awed by Washington’s prayer for America. Have you ever read it? Well,
    now is your unique opportunity, so read on!

    “Almighty God; We make our earnest prayer that Thou wilt keep the United
    States in Thy holy protection; that Thou wilt incline the hearts of the
    citizens to cultivate a spirit of subordination and obedience to government;
    and entertain a brotherly affection and love for one another and for their
    fellow citizens of the United States at large. And finally that Thou wilt
    most graciously be pleased to dispose us all to do justice, to love mercy,
    and to demean ourselves with that charity, humility, and pacific temper of
    mind which were the characteristics of the Divine Author of our blessed
    religion, and without a humble imitation of whose example in these things we
    can never hope to be a happy nation. Grant our supplication, we beseech
    Thee, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”

    Laus Deo!

    When one stops to observe the inscriptions found in public places all over
    our nation’s capitol, he or she will easily find the signature of God, as it
    is unmistakably inscribed everywhere you look. You may forget the width and
    height of “Laus Deo”, its location, or the architects but no one who reads
    this will be able to forget its meaning, or these words: “Unless the Lord
    builds the house its builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over
    the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain.” (Psalm 127:1)

    It is hoped you will send this to every child you know; to every sister,
    brother, father, mother or friend. They will not find offense, because you
    have given them a lesson in history that they probably never learned in
    school. With that, be not ashamed, or afraid, but have pity on those who
    will never see this because someone failed to send it on.

  29. Judy Sabatini says:
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