Tuesday Night Open Mic for January 5, 2010

Open mic returns to its regularly scheduled night. Last week was a Wednesday, but the discussions were just as good. I would still like to see more of folks using the format that I do to bring their own topics to the table. I know discussing my chosen topics is fun and all, but with all the multitudes of brainpower here at SUFA, I know there are tons of other interesting stories and thoughts out there that we are missing. The same goes for the guest commentary pieces. I haven’t seen nearly enough of them lately. I know the holidays are a busy time with family. But now it is time to get back to business and begin hearing everyone’s thoughts on how things are and how we can make them better. It is no fun to just talk about what I want to talk about. So bring it on!

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Comments

  1. USWeapon Topic #1

    IRS to Regulate Paid Tax Preparers

    The Internal Revenue Service plans to start regulating paid tax preparers, requiring them to register with the government, pass competency tests and adhere to ethical standards.

    The new regulations, announced Monday, will not be in effect for the current filing season — individual tax returns are due April 15. But IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman said tax preparers will be held to higher standards in future years as the IRS steps up its oversight.

    “As tax season begins, most Americans will turn to tax return preparers to help with one of their biggest financial transactions of the year,” Shulman said. The new regulations “will help ensure taxpayers receive competent, ethical service from qualified professionals and strengthen the integrity of the nation’s tax system.”

    Read the rest of the article at Fox News: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/01/04/irs-regulate-paid-tax-preparers/

    Once again we fall into that wonderful word…. regulation. Only this time it seems to me to be a direct conflict of interest. So the folks that help Americans prepare their tax returns are now going to be monitored and regulated by the folks that those taxes get paid to. Interesting. Let’s put it another way.

    Tax preparation people are paid by you, the taxpayer, to help you prepare your taxes. As someone being paid a service fee, by you the taxpayer, their job is to ensure that you pay the minimum amount of income tax to the federal government that you are required to pay. That sounds right to me, after all, you are the one paying them. But now the federal government says “we are going to come in and begin to regulate the people offering the service. In other words, they are going to set up things to tie their hands so that they are unable to help you avoid some of the taxes government desperately needs you to pay these days. I don’t like it. I don’t like it one bit. Someone please explain to me how this action fits into the scope of the federal government.

    And before anyone says to me that this is how they are going to stop the wealthy from working the system and finally get the rich assholes to pay their taxes, notice that the CPA’s are exempted from this regulation stuff. And that is who prepares the wealthy folk’s taxes, not H&R Block.

    Instead of this regulation, perhaps they could just start to ensure cabinet employees actually PAY their taxes.

    • Buck the Wala says:

      USW,

      At first blush I can see your concern and I can clearly see the potential for abuse. But don’t be so cynical so quickly. As part of my job I deal with tax returns on a daily basis – I review prepared returns and speak with the tax preparers. It is amazing how many people out there prepare other people’s taxes and have no idea what they are doing. CPAs, while they do make their fair share of mistakes (as do attorneys who prepare taxes), tend to have a much better understanding of the underlying tax code than their unregulated counterparts.

      Yes, their job is to minimize their clients’ tax burden to the fullest extent possible under the law. But I see almost daily instances of complete misunderstandings of the tax law, often to the detriment of their clients’ position. The average person will not pay a CPA or attorney’s fees to prepare their taxes, instead hiring other tax preparers. As such, some form of regulation is absolutely necessary.

      That being said, there must be a line drawn to prevent the abuse you rightly fear. I don’t see a problem with a competency test and ethical standards – CPAs and attorneys both already have such regulations in place – so long as those standards pertain to the interests of the client and NOT to the interests of the IRS.

      Have a great one!

      • Buck, when was the last time that government regulation was in the best interest of anyone but government?

        • Hey Buck…how are ya my friend? Question for you…who in the world would take their tax return to someone not qualified? It should be your responsibility to ensure you are using someone qualified or do it yourself. Or am I too simple here? Sounds logical to me…but what do I know.

          • Buck The Wala says:

            Its so logical that it will never work. You and I both are smart enough to know that people will go to the cheapest person they can who they believe to be qualified. Tax preparers hold themselves out as qualified and they do tend to know more than the average person. If the individual does not know that the preparer is unqualified how can they avoid hiring them?

            My basic point is that some basic level of competency/ethics is necessary among tax preparers. Anything going further could cross a line and pose a serious conflict of interest as USW suggests.

            I’m doing well though, how’s everything with you?

            • The point that I apparently did not make was that it is logical to me that a tax payer would NOT go to someone they did not check out. I would never assume that because someone advertised they were a tax preparation specialist..that they were.

              I am against any regulation by the IRS on anything. To me, that would be tantamount to the fox teaching the hens.

              • Buck The Wala says:

                It all depends on the extent of the regulation. Teaching the tax preparer precisely HOW to prepare the return would probably be bad. From my understanding of this though, the idea is to administer a competency test to ensure that the tax preparer is qualified.

                As for checking out a tax preparer, that is very difficult to do when you know squat about taxes and the tax law. I’m not trying to justify ignorance, but prior to working in tax law I would have been completely unable to pass judgment on another’s work.

              • Buck

                I’ll bet that I know things about the tax laws you don’t and you know things I don’t.

                So which of us is incompetant in the eyes of the IRS?

              • Buck The Wala says:

                That’s a great point. But there must be some level of basic competency and qualification here. What that level is, I’m not competent or qualified to say. 🙂

              • Good one my friend.

                And that is the point. Only You can decide.

                By the way. Standards for business permiting is a STATE authority. This authority should be protected. This rule would undermine that authority.

              • Buck The Wala says:

                I would be fine with a state system of ascertaining qualifications for tax preparers.

              • Ray Hawkins says:

                @D13 – question is how does the average Joe perform proper due diligence to ensure they are going to a properly qualified person to prepare their returns? I would suggest D13 that in that respect you are not an average Joe.

              • Ray:

                I would bet that “average joe’s” don’t hire someone to prepare their taxes.

                Most of those fitting this category can use the short form.

                How are you today Mr. Hawkins?
                I have to step out for a while but would be interested in your thoughts on subjects you posed the past couple of days.

                New thread below suggested.
                Best Wishes
                JAC

              • Good point Ray…no sir, we, my family, and I have well qualified tax preparers and I realize it was very easy for me to say…however, it is not so different from a mechanic, would it be? I know very little about cars today but before I go to a shade tree mechanic, I do find out about him. Is he bonded, guarantees, etc.

                A tax preparer should be bonded as well and have supporting docs at their disposal and should be able to represent you in the event of an audit. I would not go to an HR block unless those are met. But that is my opinion.

              • This thinking is exactly what the government wants the public to believe: you are too dumb to figure out who is qualified, so we, the all protective, savior called government will regulate this for you.

                The point on the mechanic is good, what about realtor, plumber, remodeler, attorney, dry cleaner or any of the multitudes of professionals that we use in our daily lives? Every day we make decisions about who we will hire and we don’t need to governments help or regulations to do it.

      • Buck:

        Spoken like a true Guild member my dear friend.

        Number one reason this is B.S. is well put by D13.

        Number two reason this is B.S.:

        • Buck

          Hit submit before adding #2..here it is

          April 15, 1995, from the Cato Institute:

          This year some 40 million Americans will clash with the Internal Revenue Service. In a new Cato Institute study, “Why You Can’t Trust the IRS,” author Daniel J. Pilla says in a rising number of these confrontations, the taxpayer is right, and the $7.6 billion IRS is wrong.

          In the study (Policy Analysis no. 222) Pilla finds that despite a doubling of its budget over the past 10 years and a nearly 20 percent increase in enforcement personnel, the IRS is increasingly incapable of administering and enforcing the nation’s tax law.

          Pilla cites the following as among the reasons the IRS can no longer be trusted.

          The IRS telephone taxpayer assistance program provides about 8.5 million Americans the wrong answer to even the most basic inquiries about tax laws.

          This year roughly 10 million Americans will receive correction notices from the IRS assessing about $4 billion. About half of those notices will be erroneous.

          About 40 percent of the revenues the IRS collects through penalty assessments are abated when citizens challenge the penalties. In 1993 taxpayers were overcharged $5 billion.

          A General Accounting Office audit of the IRS in 1993 found widespread evidence of financial malfeasance and gross negligence. The IRS could not account for 64 percent of its congressional appropriation.

          Pilla says the IRS fails to meet the standards of financial accountability and diligence that it imposes on the citizenry. Since the IRS can no longer adequately police itself, it can no longer be trusted with the authority to police individual American businesses and taxpayers.

          • Buck The Wala says:

            JAC, hope your morning is going well!

            To me, the above just highlights that there must be increased training, competency tests, etc. among IRS employees and auditors as well as tax preparers.

            Again, as I posted above, there must be a line drawn — ensuring competency is one thing, teaching HOW to complete a return given certain variables is another. At the end of the day it must be maintained that the tax preparer’s duty is owed to his client and not to the IRS.

            • Buck

              The line is that the IRS and Federal Govt needs to butt out.

              I’ll hire who I want based on my own hiring criteria.

              If they catch a mistake then I have to prove I didn’t make the mistake.

              After all, in their world I am guilty until proven innocent.

              They can conduct all the training they want.

              They CAN NOT impose standards or certification requirements. Let me rephrase. They should not.

              Who is going to draw this mythical line you describe?

              • Buck The Wala says:

                If they find a mistake, YOU are still liable for that mistake.

              • Buck

                YES, I am and know it full well. As to the vast majority of people who hire low cost tax preparers.

                Its my problem and the IRS needs to take their “testing” program and stick it where the sun don’t shine.

                Sorry, forgot. I am doing fine actually. Despite my antagonistic attitude towards the IRS regulation of my life.

                JAC

              • v. Holland says:

                Benefits of getting rid of our tax code and instating a fair or flat tax 1. lower stress-immediately lowers our heath costs. 2. Use a lot less paper-helps environment, etc, etc

              • v. Holland says:

                The government keeps saying they want to help us-okay help us-get rid of the current tax laws.

          • Kristian Stout says:

            Quick question, why in God’s name would I trust the IRS to train tax preparers when they can’t even do their own job right? That was the gist of that article wasn’t it?

            • v. Holland says:

              Seriously, they need to be concentrating on fixing the crazy complicated tax system not figuring out ways to increase the cost. I was actually told by my accountant once that the only way to know for sure if I had to pay taxes on some out of state business was to go to court and have them tell me because the tax law wasn’t clear, of course the IRS, erred on the side that made them the most money.

              • Both parties have a history of tinkering with the tax code for special interests. They like it complex because it makes it hard to hold the politicians accountable. Therefore, neither party will allow the IRS to be “fixed”.

          • Dale Albrecht says:

            Don’t most paid tax preparers like H&R Block stand by their tax preparations with a guarantee, that if they were at fault and made a mistake, they pay the additional tax and penalty. Whereas if the IRS helps you prepare your tax form and makes a mistake they absolve themselves from the error. I say the government should first clean up their own house before regulating those outside the government. Has anyone ever seen the list of US tax evaders implicated in the UBS tax scandal. I can bet that they did not have their taxes prepared by any joe blow tax preparer.

      • Buck

        Another:

        October 7, 2009
        IRS Made Errors in Stimulus Payments to 400,000 Taxpayers
        The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration yesterday released Evaluation of the Planning, Computation, and Issuance of the Recovery Rebate Credit (2009-40-129), reporting that:

        The IRS issued more than $96 billion in advanced economic stimulus payments (up to $1,2000 for married couples filing jointly) to more than 119 million taxpayers in Calendar Year 2008 and approximately $8.5 billion in payments to almost 21 million taxpayers as of April 17, 2009.
        259,000 taxpayers did not receive $84.6 million in payments due to various IRS errors.
        141,000 taxpayers received $60.6 million in payments for which they were ineligible due to various IRS errors.

        • Perhaps the IRS could make the whole thing a LOT less complicated, so the average person can figure out the tax return on their own. Like, you made X dollars, please make sure you paid at least Z percent in taxes. It seems that these rules are made up by lawyers and you need to hire a lawyer to do just about anything.

          • Buck The Wala says:

            Gotta feed my family! 🙂

            • No problem there. Didn’t mean to insult you personally. My point is that some of the 535 know the law well enough to know just how much to bend it without breaking it. These guys make the honest lawyers look bad.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                Never took it as an insult at all.

                From my perspective, the whole point is to bend the law as much as possible without breaking it — getting the maximum benefit for the client within the confines of the law. It’s still completely honest.

      • Buck

        And another:

        One of the worst ways to start the day is to receive a letter from the Internal Revenue Service questioning your tax return.

        When that happens, it’s tempting just to write a check and make the problem disappear. But instant surrender may be a costly mistake. Accountants and lawyers say IRS notices may contain significant errors — and that more taxpayers should take the time to study them and fight back when they think their tax return is correct.

        “You just have to be patient and persistent,” says David Lifson, a certified public accountant at Hays & Co. in New York and president-elect of the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants. “Of course, you also have to be right.”

        In view of the growing complexity of the nation’s tax laws, it’s surprising the IRS doesn’t make more mistakes. Some accountants blame much of the problem on the rapid expansion of the alternative minimum tax, one of the most devilishly complex tax systems ever invented by Congress.

        Among the areas causing difficulty lately: taxation of state and local income-tax refunds. For example, consider the case of a Los Gatos, Calif., man who received an IRS notice last month from the agency’s Ogden, Utah, center. The notice said: “The income and payment information (e.g., wages, miscellaneous income, interest, income tax withheld, earned income credit, etc.) that we have on file doesn’t match entries on your 2005 Form 1040. If this information is correct, you will owe $2,310.”

        According to the IRS, the man had received a California state-tax refund totaling $6,273. “Since you claimed state and local taxes when you itemized deductions on your 2004 tax return, you must report any refund or credit of those taxes as income on your 2005 federal-tax return (or the year in which you actually received the refund or credit),” the IRS said.

        The Californian assumed the IRS was right and wrote out a check. But before mailing it, he asked his tax preparer, Claudia Hill, to look into it. “He was all set to mail in that check,” says Ms. Hill, owner of Tax Mam, a tax-services firm in Cupertino, and an enrolled agent, which means she is authorized to practice before the IRS. “He wanted to know why I hadn’t included” the refund on his return.

        Ms. Hill says she quickly realized the IRS was wrong because of the intricacies of the AMT, which had ensnared her client. Ms. Hill says she has spotted the same IRS error in letters to several other clients in recent weeks. When she called the IRS, she was told the agency was taking steps to remedy the situation.

        • Buck The Wala says:

          There are plenty of examples of the IRS messing up. I just dealt with one the other day.

          But examples of the IRS making mistakes does not obviate the need for some level of competency among tax preparers themselves. As Lifson is quoted above: “Of course, you also have to be right.”

          • Buck

            The level of competency required for me to be comfortable with the level of “me being right” is MY choice to make.

            As I said, they can provide all the free training they wish.

            It stops there. PERIOD>

    • Just an observation, from the number of replies to this post this early in the morning, I would say you hit a nerve.

      I too wonder how the IRS can regulate private preparers when they cannot instruct their own employees. I think they should clean up their own house first. If the preparer was held responsible for part of any penalties, would this not help with the industry self regulating?

      Simplification of the tax codes would significantly reduce the cost for companies, individuals and government.

      • Buck The Wala says:

        I wouldn’t say it hit a nerve. But the first thing I thought of when I read this post this morning was “It’s about time!” Definitely not the same response as others.

        I agree the IRS needs to clean up shop and get people that actually know what they are doing. But to me that is besides the point — why not do both, train their own AND set baseline qualifications for others?

        • Buck

          ” “It’s about time!””

          And that is what hit the nerve for me. The IRS is a given. But the mind set that they, of all people, should set competency standards is antithetical to freedom and liberty.

          You accept the federal govt for somethng it IS NOT.

          The Federal Govt doesn’t need to act as my protector from my own stupidity. You don’t need to be concerned about it.

          If my studpidity to select a hack tax preparer has absolutely no effect on you, then why are you willing to give govt the authority to control the criteria? It has no affect on you, it does not threaten your safety, it does not threaten your health, nor does it threaten your freedom or liberty. All it does, is create a govt. protected group that restricts competition. Oh and of course, if puts eveyone in the group in the Govt’s data base.

          The answer to disfunctional govt is NOT more govt.

  2. USWeapon Topic #2

    Florida GOP Chief Resigns in Bow to Tea Partiers

    Amid increasing criticism, embattled Florida Republican Party Chairman Jim Greer announced Tuesday that he plans to step down from his post next month, saying his resignation is an effort to heal the current acrimony among Republican Party members in the state.

    “I have always put the party first even when criticisms were misdirected and accusations were false,” Greer said in a quickly-planned conference call with reporters.

    During the call, Greer also acknowledged that critics within the party have been pushing for his removal over the last couple months. Greer, a supporter of Gov. Charlie Crist, pointed to “a very vocal group that has been very active in seeking efforts to oust me as chairman” in part because of his support for Crist’s Senate campaign.

    Greer said that his critics have “distorted” facts about him and his leadership and “have basically thrown everything up against the wall to embarrass me.”

    Tea party activists and some grassroot Republicans in Florida have criticized Greer for his early support of Crist and for his “big tent” approach to Republicanism, which they have described as too moderate.

    Read the rest of the article at Fox News: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/01/05/florida-gop-chief-resigns-bow-tea-partiers/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%253A+foxnews%252Fpolitics+%2528Text+-+Politics%2529

    I had to chuckle about this. Groups have called for his head because he is too moderate” of a Republican. Perhaps they have not paid attention to the entire Republican party the last decade or so. True “small government” Republicans, like those the tea party folks would like, don’t exist at the federal level any longer.

    And I chuckled even more when it noted that they are opposed to the “big tent” approach. Because that is exactly what the Republican party needs, to further limit the number of folks that identify them. That, my friends, is idiotic if they want to have a true impact on the 2010 elections. They better build as big a tent as they can find.

    But it is interesting that the tea party folks are beginning to have some impact on the national parties. Not the party they expected, but impact none the less. I guess the question in the months to come is whether the tea party folks can find any form of organization that includes actually defining what they are about. I know I was with them in the past. And I still am to an extent. But we can plainly see what the fractures did to the Libertarian party. Will the same fate befall the tea party movement?

    • I’m sitting here and I keep seeing articles like this one. The question I have to wonder is this: Just how big of a hole will the tea partiers shoot in their own foot in 2010?

      • v. Holland says:

        I agree-I think the top priority for 2010 is to take away the democrats majority-after we accomplish that -then let the house cleaning begin. Lets face it folks, we cannot change much about Congress in the next few months, letting the democrats keep seats in the house and senate because we split the vote is not in this countries interest IMHO.

        • Exactly . Then as the clean up is on the rest will behave in fear of their own job, then we shut the House door on them when their turn is up. Six years of pressure should do it.

    • I am a tea partier, teabagger, right wing extremist, racist, whatever new name is on those of us that have chosen to take a stand. I don’t think you are understanding this “stand” and am surprised by this because it really is what we talk so often about here: supporting your words with your actions! It really is that simple. Don’t tell us how you will reduce, reduce, reduce and then go to Washington and spend, spend and spend.

      I would say most of the tea party participants are fiscally conservative, ie, are not happy with the spending, growth and instrusion of government. While many may have aligned themselves with the R party in the past (like me), they realize that having an R behind your name does not mean you adhere to these beliefs, and once they get to Washington, they behave like a D and spend away. This group is saying no more to this bait and switch. The R party is taking a hit by the tea party group because we’ve counted on them and they’ve let us down. They can either get their act together or another party will develop.

      In 2010 the priority first must be to put balance back in Washington; ideally with candidates that understand the simple concept of the above. I do believe some RINOS will have to be tolerated though as this change will take time. I see 2012 as being the year that either a restructured R party will emerge, or more likely, a strong third Independent (or whatever name) will come into play.

      • Kathy:

        You go girl. I am with you all the way.

        This movement is working across the country and making established Party hack R’s very nervous. Having big time protectionist B.S. going on right here in the Big Sky State.

        Those who want the candidates to be held to the party platform, smaller govt and balanced budgets, are excluded from any positions of authority. They have been told their job is to get R’s elected no matter what.

        To which they say……..Bull Dookey……..and I say………Ditto.

        2010 IS NOT about getting D’s thrown out. It MUST BE about starting the practice of ONLY voting for those who represent our values and then holding them to their promises. It is the beginning of the ACCOUNTABILITY movement.

        Big Hug for you today Kathy.
        JAC

        • v. Holland says:

          I agree with you that the tea party is a good thing and I give them credit for most of the good things happening here-I’ve been to one, consider myself one and I support them but losing the war before we really get started doesn’t work for me. If we allow the democrats to have a majority for another, what 3 years, the war is over, we are done.

      • I’m all for the tea party movement but I think that V has the right aproach for this particular year. I think it is just a little too quick for the tea party to win. The tea party should stand with the Republican’s this year and push the movement starting on Nov 3. Then maybe there could actually be a T party

        • Anita and V. Holland:

          If You do not stick to your principles this election year it won’t matter. There will be another reason next time.

          It is your principles that make up your moral behavior. Do not sacrifice them for some percieved strategic reason. That has been the historical pattern.

          And just because they have a D next to their name does not mean all is lost. Replace the far lefty D’s with some moderate D’s and they will throw Pelosi out of the chair, or stop towing the line. But that requires T Party pressure.

          Keep up the good fight, but most of all don’t give up your inner self.
          JAC

          • JAC

            You took the wind outta my sail..making me think too hard. I understand your argument and that is how I try to live my life. Just seems on this one common sense comes into play. Dont forget the sheep are slow. Not enough sheep would vote T and the result is a worse mess. That’s why I think the push should start Nov 3

            • Thinking further though, it should all be figured out in primaries so at least the good guys get a second chance

            • V.H. and Anita

              Saving the republic is an action.

              A principle or moral is a STANDARD by which to judge our action.

              That is why I have constantly harped on the need for a solid foundation. Then all actions are taken relative to that foundation. The goal itself is built around that foundation.

              My point here is that just getting R’s elected because D’s are bad is not the solution. It does not help us reach the goal of VDLG and I doubt it will create a delay action like we hope.

              We in fact would be better off with both parties divided among their left and right left parts. That could actually cause delays.

              I agree that the vote is our best tool now. It is how we use the tool that I am arguing about, not its importance.

              If everyone jumps on the R bandwagon the momentum will stop after November. The D’s will then start their retaliation mode, before we are ready to deal with both of them.

              That is why I say, stand on our principles of freedom and liberty. Don’t support some R who is willing to compromise on the basics for cookies. There are good D’s out there for what we want in the short term. But they need to know WHO brought them to the dance.

              If a moderate D knows the tea party got him elected he is not going to turn his back on that fact in the next two years. So if he is better than another RINO then take the D.

              We may have to accept less than perfect in some candidates but not when it comes to the core principles. We need to add to those who share our ideals not create another force against them.

              We only need about 10 solid Senators. For now I would say they need to be more “Libertarian” in their views. Ron Paul types. With ten Senators in aliance the filibuster comes into play no matter whether the D’s change it to 50%. jThe house doesn’t matter but any we can pick up is fine. But here we need to be selective.

              The entrenched elit in the R party are trying to catch the wild horse that escaped the barn this past summer. If we allow them to catch that horse and use it to their advantage the hores will no longer be wild. The tea party movement is the wild horse.

              Think about this. Look at who the major R’s are that are vieing for the spotlight and leadership. Changing their tune to coax the horse back to the barn. These are the masters at grass roots electioneering. If we put them back in power they will make sure the horse doesn’t escape again.

              Otherwise I suggest the greater effort be placed on local and state elections. If the states stop asking for cookies, the federal govt will lose power. If the states start to organize the fed will shudder and quiet down for awhile. With 75% of the states, we can solve the problem for the next 100 years or so. Without electing a single member of congress.

              I am starting to ramble so will stop for now. We need to explore this more and soon. The time for action is now with regard to 2010.

              Best to you this evening
              JAC

          • v. Holland says:

            Depends on ones definition of what their guiding principal is-mine is trying to save our republic-voting is a tool I’m using to try and achieve that goal-the men we vote in are a tool too-how we use those tools should IMO be in whichever way achieves our goal-So I guess we simply disagree on the importance of the tools. 🙂

            • Careful, girl. You might get accused of “the ends justifies the means thing” 😉

              • Cyndi

                V.H. isnt that far off base…….yet. But you have spotted the danger.

                As I said above, I do not disagree on the importance of the tools we have at our disposal right now.

                I do disagree with the idea that any R is better than any D. We need to start pushing and supporting those who share the core values of liberty and freedom. If that is a D then so be it. They will know who helped get them elected.

                There may be a good reason for pushing R’s but I haven’t heard it yet. Fear of splitting the power of the R’s isn’t a good reason in my mind. Any third party types will have to form coalitions with others in Congress. Which side do you think is more likely to fit their agenda?

                My absolutely best wishes to you ladies.

                JAC

              • Hi Jac,

                I’m wondering why ‘honest’, meaning possessing core values of freedom and liberty, Ds and Rs aren’t leaving the parties, and forming a new party? Are there any Ds and Rs who have the core values? I’m beginning to think of the Democrat party as the Commu-crats, and the Rs as Socialists-lite. A third party would be very appealing if it was truly conservative.

              • you may well have just captured my vote. we’ll see how it plays out. Godspeed on your surgery, JAC

              • v. Holland says:

                Perhaps I am not saying what I mean well enough or perhaps I’m not understanding you because I do not disagree with you in principal-I have no problem with voting for an independent or even a democrat although the level of confidence I would have in a democrat would have to be very high to overcome the vote with party mentality that our current body of Congress follows especially when they have such a large majority, it makes it extremely hard for the rep. to stand alone when there lone vote will defeat the whole parties plans.
                My hope is if we can get rid of the 60 vote majority that the dems have right now that our reps will not feel so pressured to follow the party line and will be more likely to actually listen to their supporters.

                The only problem I have with what the T-Party is doing comes into play when they run a third party candidate which splits the conservative vote causing a democrat to win insuring that the democrats have a large majority.

                Of course the ideal is to get principled people into office who will follow their core principals and to vote for the ones who share ours but that is going to take time and right now splitting their power is the only way I see to slow down this train wreak.

              • v. Holland says:

                I would hate to be accused of that-because that isn’t what I believe but there are only a few seats up for grabs and the republicans must get enough of them to take away a 60 vote majority from the democrats-I want balanced power and in 2010, the only way I can see to achieve that is to vote for the party-so neither side has control. You might have noticed that when it comes to important legislation they always seem to vote with their party. Not saying I wouldn’t vote solely for the man if I am convinced they will stand alone if necessary.

      • A Puritan Descendant says:

        As for me, I will stay home come voting day just like I did this past election, unless I see a candidate I agree with and trust.

  3. USWeapon Topic #3

    C-SPAN Challenges Congress to Open Health Care Talks to TV Coverage

    The head of C-SPAN has implored Congress to open up the last leg of health care reform negotiations to the public, as top Democrats lay plans to hash out the final product among themselves.

    C-SPAN CEO Brian Lamb wrote to leaders in the House and Senate Dec. 30 urging them to open “all important negotiations, including any conference committee meetings,” to televised coverage on his network.

    “The C-SPAN networks will commit the necessary resources to covering all of the sessions LIVE and in their entirety,” he wrote.

    In a Tuesday afternoon press conference on health legislation negotiations, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi appeared to object to the premise behind the request.

    “There has never been a more open process for any legislation in anyone who’s served here’s experience,” she said.

    Read the rest of the article: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/01/05/c-span-challenges-congress-open-health-care-talks-tv-coverage/

    OK, before I even get started in discussing what CSPAN is asking for or what Obama has promised, I have to address that last line above. Nancy Pelosi, in one of her craziest statements thus far around health care, says that no one can remember a more open process for any legislation than this one!!!!! How ridiculous can the statements coming from the far left be? By more open does she mean that the public actually knew all the closed door meetings were happening? What planet do these nut jobs live on?

    But on to the actual premise of the article. I applaud CSPAN for calling the Democrats and the Obama administration out on this one. Let’s not forget the exact words from our chosen Messiah during the campaign:

    “That’s what I will do in bringing all parties together, not negotiating behind closed doors, but bringing all parties together, and broadcasting those negotiations on C-SPAN so that the American people can see what the choices are,”

    As I have covered before, this is clearly what DID NOT happen. And I am tired of hearing the excuses made by folks for this one. This was a pretty big promise given the scope of the legislation that he was telling us he was going to champion. When you say I am going to change the health care system, but I will do it with transparency, so you will all know what is going on, I expect you to follow through on that one. Because this is not a small change to the system.

    This administration has thus far given us anything but transparency. And people still seem to champion that it is a process that takes time. Instead of transparency, we had 1:00 am votes on the floor, closed door meetings, completely partisan discussions, special buy off deals for critical Democrats, and now the plan to bypass procedural rules in order to ensure Republicans are not part of the discussions or able to debate the issues or delay anything. Every single word of the President’s promise has been broken, and to me that says everything about the integrity of the chosen one.

    • USW

      I was very happy that CSPAN called them out on this promise, no question. I hope they continue to not only push for this, but continue to make this public. But I also hope not only do they call Dems out on this ( including Obama), but I hope they search Reps to help push for this also. No one can hide on this one.

      Ellen

    • I am afraid that this will go nowhere right now but hopefully somewhere later this year. This is yet another promise in the long list of promises that have been broken and will continue to be that way….but wait…the proponents of the POTUS will say that Congress controls the C span….but how quickly they will forget that the deals are not being made in Congressional offices but in the White House…where there is no C span and that is controlled by the POTUS.

  4. USWeapon Topic #4

    The word ‘Negro’ on 2010 census form offends some blacks

    On Monday, the U.S. Census Bureau launched their campaign to count more than 300 million American residents. They are relying on cutting-edge technology and social media such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to appeal to African-Americans and heighten awareness about the 2010 census.

    Yet, one of the form’s 10 questions uses what many consider an outdated and offensive term, and may lead some African-Americans to ask just how far the country has come.

    Question No. 9 on the form, which will be mailed out beginning March 15, asks: “What is Person 1’s race?”

    The answer choices are: “White; Black, African-American, or Negro; American Indian or Alaska Native.”

    While the term “Negro” has appeared in previous census forms, some young or first-time African-American census participants may find it offensive, which could present a problem for the 2010 census campaign, which has focused on inclusion.

    Shelly Lowe, a U.S. Census Bureau spokesperson, agrees that the use of “Negro” is antiquated, and says that the bureau was surprised to learn there still are people who prefer to be called by the term.

    Lowe also noted that all of the census questions are “tested ad nauseam,” enough so that using the “Negro” term “outweighed the potential negatives.”

    The U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) defines the racial category of black or African-American as “a person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa,” and further stipulates that terms such as “Haitian” or “Negro” can be used in addition to “black or African-American.”

    The term was left on the 2010 form after a number of respondents to the 2000 census opted to write-in “Negro” when answering the question on race, census officials said.

    Read the rest of the article from MSNBC: http://www.thegrio.com/2010/01/the-word-negro-in-2010-census-form-offends-some-blacks.php

    I had to ask a couple of friends about this one to get their take as African Americans. Not a single one was happy with the census containing this word. But they were all my age. In a society where the offensive “N-word” is now most often uttered by worshiped rap stars instead of racist southern Klan members, I find it fascinating that folks still try to make this an issue.

    The word is either offensive or it is not offensive. I will not accept this double standard that says it is OK if a black person calls me that but if a white person does it makes them a racist. I don’t use the word. I don’t like it. And I don’t care who is saying it I don’t like it. But see there, I have eliminated the contradiction from my argument.

    I wonder when we will start seeing these same folks enraged that it is called the United Negro College Fund? I see this as a non-issue that the race baiters (Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, the NAACP) are attempting to make an issue so that they will somehow still have relevance in the world. Because they right now do not have relevance, and it is killing them. They are struggling to capitalize on anything they can in order to claim that electing a black man means nothing, we are still a racist country at heart. And it sickens me. I have never disliked someone for the color of their skin. But I sure do dislike those pieces of trash.

    And go ahead and refuse to participate in the census. That is exactly what the black community in America needs, to marginalize themselves within the US population numbers. Idiots.

    • Now, I think it is time that I be upset. I take offense at the term “white” and “caucasian”. There. Now we are all equal.

      And, just for the record…and out in the open for all the FEDS to see….I will not fill out the census form and I will not give out the information they are asking for…OTHER than my name and number of people in the household. They are not even entitled to that but since district lines and representatives are drawn from this…i will give them that much. They will not get my SSN or phone number or who owns the residence or whether or not it is mortgaged….and I do not care what the law says.

      • I’ve been wondering myself if you really have to answer all their questions. Can anyone tell me what the minimum is that we have to tell them?

        • v. Holland says:

          “What happens if I don’t fill out my census form?.” 01 April 2000. HowStuffWorks.com. January 2010.

          “In the United States, the census is officially a big deal (see How the Census Works to learn exactly how big a deal it is). Originally, the census was meant to be a way to count everyone so that the members of the House of Representatives could be allocated properly to the states. Every 10 years there would be a count, and states with more people got more members in the House. Over time, the government has gotten significantly more complicated, and today, the federal government allocates money to states for all sorts of programs. Something like $100 billion gets distributed every year, and quite a bit of it is distributed based on population. The census provides the only official head count.

          Someone is very likely to notice if you do not fill out and return your form. After April 1 in a census year, all of the responses received by the U.S. Census Bureau will be compared to major lists of U.S. residences. If your response has not been received — or if you didn’t complete all the questions on your form — someone from the census will contact you for that information. The census is a $6.5 billion dollar project. They can afford to be thorough!

          If you refuse to give out the information or you deliberately give inaccurate information, you can be in legal trouble. According to United States Code, Title 13 (Census), Chapter 7 (Offenses and Penalties), SubChapter II, if you’re over 18 and refuse to answer all or part of the Census, you can be fined up to $100. If you give false answers, you’re subject to a fine of up to $500. If you offer suggestions or information with the “intent to cause inaccurate enumeration of population,” you are subject to a fine of up to $1,000, up to a year in prison, or both. Here’s the official verbiage:

          221. Refusal or neglect to answer questions; false answers

          * (a) Whoever, being over eighteen years of age, refuses or willfully neglects, when requested by the Secretary, or by any other authorized officer or employee of the Department of Commerce or bureau or agency thereof acting under the instructions of the Secretary or authorized officer, to answer, to the best of his knowledge, any of the questions on any schedule submitted to him in connection with any census or survey provided for by subchapters I, II, IV, and V of chapter 5 of this title, applying to himself or to the family to which he belongs or is related, or to the farm or farms of which he or his family is the occupant, shall be fined not more than $100.

          * (b) Whoever, when answering questions described in subsection (a) of this section, and under the conditions or circumstances described in such subsection, willfully gives any answer that is false, shall be fined not more than $500.

          * (c) Notwithstanding any other provision of this title, no person shall be compelled to disclose information relative to his religious beliefs or to membership in a religious body.

          Sec. 222. Giving suggestions or information with intent to cause inaccurate enumeration of population

          Whoever, either directly or indirectly, offers or renders to any officer or employee of the Department of Commerce or bureau or agency thereof engaged in making an enumeration of population under subchapter II, IV, or V of chapter 5 of this title, any suggestion, advice, information or assistance of any kind, with the intent or purpose of causing an inaccurate enumeration of population to be made, shall be fined not more than $1,000 or imprisoned not more than one year, or both. ”

          http://people.howstuffworks.com/question345.htm

          I’m assuming you can take them to court but assuming anything is dangerous-perhaps someone else knows for sure.

          • Yeah…I read all that prior to today and am going to test the system. I will give them partial information. My name and number in the household. I will not give them ssn number, phone number, DL number, and mortgage information. IMO, none of that has to do with how many. I know they are not going to utilize that info for legal status as there will be counting of illegals…on purpose…for the intent of delegates and money….we all know this.

            But I will test it and gladly pay the $100…IF they actually go through and fine me.

            I will not give false information but I will give incomplete information. Let you know how it turns out. If I disappear from the blog for an extended period of time…I guess that is your answer. 🙂

            • Make sure your one call is to USW so he can put the word out and we’ll be there pronto……

              I’m planning on doing the same though, so I might be locked up here too.

            • D13:

              The law says you must answer to the best of your ability.

              “I don’t remember” seems a good answer to me.

          • Thank you V. I’m not sure but I think I’ll take my chances on the $100 fine. In 2000 I had quite a mix in my house and I got a headache trying to complete the form.

    • The replacement of the word Negroe with African American is a classic study of a political movement redefining a language for ideological reasons. And it worked perfectly.

      The evidence is the fact that there is any controversy of using the word at all.

      Negroe was not synonymous to Nigger in its usage. One is a derogatory slur the other a classification of race. Dr. King used the word Negroe often in his discussions of the black mans inequality. Oh, he also used the term black man.

      I actually feel a slight tinge of anger everytime I hear the term African American. I realize most alive today don’t, because they don’t remember the context in which it was created and shoved down our collective throats. It left a bad taste for me and many others who pushed for true equality for all.

      I know D13 and some of the other long tooths here know what I mean. Since most don’t know, I am not as upset as I used to be about its use. But for those that say you can not redefine terms for the American public, this is a classic example of how it can be done.

      • Now I am really upset at you JAC….you just discriminated against me….long tooth….(sigh)…I am going to join the politically correct movement now,,,,

        naaaahhhhhhhhhhhh……long in the tooth does not bother me. Nor does being a “honky”…I am just glad that I still have some teeth. 🙂

      • Negro is also the word for black in Spanish and some other languages. What is the big deal. I’m surprised the same idiots don’t make Arnold Schwarzenegger change his name, it means black black.

        • Here’s the big deal: Intent.

          You see, intent makes all the difference in the world, and it’s why the inclusion of this word is (should be) no big deal.

          The term was used in a derogatory fashion for many years by many people and has since come to take on negative connotations. When you call someone a “negro”, you are not calling them black or African American, you are calling them an inferior / sub-human who happens to be black or African American. But this is implied in the usage.

          This is the reason for the double standard. It is safely assumed that when a member of the group uses the term, there is no implication that he himself is subhuman or inferior so no such implication can be implied toward the person whom the term is used to describe. Not exactly fair, but it makes sense.

          Now, when we use the term in a technical sense, as on a census where we know that nothing is meant by it, we should apply our brains and realize that the term itself has no special power and denotation is accurate and useful.

          Much ado about nothing.

          • Matt said:

            “The term was used in a derogatory fashion for many years by many people and has since come to take on negative connotations.”

            I will disagree with you on that statement. As someone who grew up in the Deep South during the 50’s and 60’s the word colored was more of a derogatory phrase than Negro. As a child everywhere you went you saw white and colored signs. To call someone colored was the same as using the N word. If you will look at MLK’s speeches you will see he used Negro quite often and for a long time in that period that is what was accepted by everyone. Of course when PC started it went from Negro to Black to African American. To this day my older Black friends prefer Negro or Black.

            • I also grew up and currently reside in the deep south. It seems to me that there have been several identifiers that have been used to (for a lack of a better term) label the black race. From colored, to negro, to African American, to black. If one is used long enough the blacks seem to take offense to it. To me, it says that they (as a majority) are not yet really comfortable with who they are. There are legitimate reasons for that I suppose. I know plenty of black folks that seem comfortable with who they are, but have been exposed to many more who simply want to blame someone else for their problems. Personally, you can call me anything you want, I know who and what I am and I am comfortable with it…sticks and stones…

          • Some people just look for a way to be offended. They should get a life IMHO

      • Kristian Stout says:

        I tend to agree with you on this. I’ve never cared for the term african american as they are no more african than I.

        • Agreed Kristian. A good friend is black. He says, if the description of me is white, then the description of him is black and we are both Americans. So simple.

          • Kristian Stout says:

            I have a lot of friends that are a lot of different colors, black, brown white, it doesn’t matter the color, it matters the character. I don’t care about color, I care about are they a good person.

    • It is interesting to see how the questions changed throughout the years. http://usa.ipums.org/usa/voliii/tEnumForm.shtml

    • I was talking to a older black lady ( age 71) who goes to the same small local coffee shop as I do. She was offended by it. But one the same note she is more offended by younger kids using the N-word. She grew up in Southern Miss. She said why not just have a box that says American Citizen, no race across the board.

    • I am offended that white is my only option. I am Norwegian-American and want to be called that. Anything else is racist against my Norwegian ancestry.

      • Dale Albrecht says:

        The current living mix in my family (all immigrants over the past 150 years)is German, French, Native American (Crow), Dutch, Croatian, Romanian, Turkish, Polish, Austrian and Lithuanian. Bottom line is that they all became “AMERICANS” The problem with the civil rights movement is that it morphed into a wealth distibution system, regardless of effort and contribution and based solely on the percent of your special race designation. Oh I forgot I believe there is some Spanish and or Mexican mixed into the past ancestry. As the German branch traveled through Texas after landing in New Orleans and then proceded up the Mississippi and Missouri until they reached the Dakota’s the first born female was always named Juanita.

        • Man, with that much ancestry, you could be shouting racist at everything. There must constantly be times that at least one piece of your background isn’t offended!!!! You, Dale are missing the boat if you’ve paid your own way in life! (sarc)

          • Dale Albrecht says:

            I never in the entire time I knew my great grandparents or grand parents heard any one of them speak any language but english. They used to say, we are Americans not German hyphen or Polish hyphen etc. None of my ancestry is a protected group. We just have to make our way on our own.

            • Hi Dale,

              My Peruvian born mother told me the same thing when I asked her why she didn’t teach us Spanish when we children. Both of my parents are immigrants and love America more than the American born citizens.

              Too bad the more recent immigrants aren’t like my parents 😦

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      My rant on “the N-word” – I agree with Louis CK – I hate when people write or say “the N-Word” – when you do that you forcing me to say it in my head. So just say it! We’re smart enough to read the context of how you’re using it.

    • Two interesting asides:

      There is a push to have gay individuals boycott the census in protest for their rights. The stated goal is to force Democrats to make good on their election promises or face electoral damage. This strikes me as INSANELY STUPID for all the obvious reasons.

      Second, I seem to recall an incident where a white student was ridiculed and placed on probation for referring to himself as an African American. He was from South Africa. Doesn’t that make him an American from Africa, hence African American?

      • Buck The Wala says:

        Which is why many people do not like the term ‘African-American’ — 1) it doesn’t mean you are black and 2) many blacks are not or do not consider themselves from Africa.

        • A co-worker of mine is Jamaican and has black skin. She is highly offended if someone, in their attempts at PC, call her African-American.

      • v. Holland says:

        They need to start putting a definition beside each word to tell us the actual meaning and if two words mean the same thing, one of them doesn’t need to be there. PC has been employed to the point of the ridiculous and sometimes to complete confusion. I find it very hard to even care anymore.

      • Mathius

        That kills me about the gay part. I wouldnt mark the box- government does not need to know who I sleep with in my life.

        • It’s not on the census questionnaire (at least that I know of). Gays overwhelmingly vote Democratic*. So, by not registering on the census, they penalize their party. Thus their party has to listen to them to avoid catastrophe (some estimates have the gay population as high as 10%**).

          But of course, this plan is so stupid that I am convinced it was made up and promulgated by anti-gay rights activists. By the same token, I strongly encourage all tea partiers to boycott the census as an invasion of your privacy and another example of blatant governmental overreach.

          *Why? Because even though Democratic party isn’t great about gay rights, the Republican party is awful. Thus the choice is between bad and worse. Easy choice.

          **This is probably closer to 2.5%, but is still demographic worth paying attention to. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_sexual_orientation

          • Matt:

            Your recommendation for tea partiers to boycott the census and your stated reason as to Why make absolutely no sense.

            Please explain the connection so I might understand what you are trying to say.

            • Boycotting the census denies you representation. Thus, if tea partiers (who I have to assume are more prevalent in red states) boycott, the relative populations will change and we (the left) will have more representatives and thus more influence. Seems like a good plan to me.

              • Matt:

                Boycotting the census will not deny anyone representation unless the boycotts occur is primarily in some states and not others. Censeus does not affect party representation. It only affects the number of reps given to each state.

                Within the states it is only part of the criteria used to draw voting district boundaries.

                If all “conservatives” and “libertarians” boycotted then it could have an impact in that the heavily populated “progressive” states would get more representatives.

                But each state would still be represented and everyone would still vote.

                State redistricting is usually manipulated by the party in control and population is only part of the picture. In fact, if the population is undercounted voting districts would have to be increased in size to encompass equal portions of the population. Thus the ACTUAL power within each district could be increased for the R’s by boycotting. The old “sandbag” routine.

                Of course, the idea is not to boycott entirely. It is to only give the number of residents living at the location. Which is the only data needed to complete the vote allocation process. Which was the purpose of the census in the first place.

              • I am working on the following assumption: A greater percentage of conservative leaning states will be tea party activists who might participate in a boycott.

                Let’s just make up some easy numbers.

                If 50% of a red state boycotts and 10% of a comparably sized blue state boycotts, the blue state will appear to the census as 80% more populous.

                Then congressional representation will be accorded to the states in proportion to their population. The blue state picks up a vote. The red state loses a vote. So blue state effectively steals a rep from the red state. This rep is likely to be liberal since he is from a liberal state.

                Thus we gain influence and power.

  5. A subject we all can relate too… 🙂

    http://mises.org/daily/3997

    The Relentless Misery of 1.6 Gallons
    Mises Daily: Tuesday, January 05, 2010 by Jeffrey A. Tucker

    “Indoor plumbing since the time of the ancient world has been a sign of prosperity and human well-being.”My order at my favorite Chinese takeout was taking too long. I stopped into the men’s room. There I witnessed a common scene: the modern toilet disaster. An otherwise clean business had a restroom calamity on its hands, one so grim that I hesitate to describe it.

    The conjectural history is not difficult to reconstruct. The toilet apparently had trouble flushing. There was a plunger by the toilet, of course, as we see everywhere today. The toilet was plunged to get rid of the obstruction, while the obstruction itself spilled all over the floor and stuck to the plunger too.

    The customer probably left the ghastly scene in a rush. Management knew nothing. But now customers were coming and going into this bathroom, surely losing all inspiration to eat or order food.

    It would be easy to blame the restaurant owners. What is with these people and why can’t they at least have a clean restroom? But reacting this way would be unjust. The hidden hand behind this unsanitary calamity is the US government. The true origin of the mess was not in the hour before I arrived but back in 1994, after Congress passed the Energy Policy Act (passed in 1992).

    This act, passed during an environmentalist hysteria, mandated that all toilets sold in the United States use no more than 1.6 gallons of water per flush. This was a devastating setback in the progress of civilization. The conventional toilet in the US ranges from 3.5 gallons to 5 gallons. The new law was enforced with fines and imprisonment.

    For years, there was a vibrant black market for Canadian toilet tanks and a profitable smuggling operation in effect. This seems either to have subsided or to have gone so far underground that it doesn’t make the news. I’ve searched the web in vain for evidence of any 3.5 or 5.0 gallon toilet tanks for sale through normal channels. I wonder what one of these fetches in the black market. This possible source has no prices and an uncertain locale.

    The toilet manufacturers, meanwhile, are all touting their latest patented innovations as a reason for the reduced hysteria surrounding the toilet disaster. I suspect something different. We have all gotten used to a reduced standard of living — just as the people living in the Soviet Union became accustomed to cold apartments, long bread lines, and poor dental care. There is nothing about our standard of living that is intrinsic to our sense of how things ought to be. Let enough time pass and people forget things.

    So let us remember way back when:

    Toilets did not need plungers next to them, and thank goodness. Used plungers are nasty, disease carrying, and filthy. It doesn’t matter how cute the manufacturer tries to make them or in how many colors you can buy them. In the old days, you would never have one exposed for guests. It was kept out in the garage for the rare occasion when someone threw a ham or something stranger down the toilet.

    Toilet paper was super thick and getting thicker. None of this one-ply nonsense.

    You never had any doubt about the capacity of the toilet to flush completely, with only one pull of the handle. The toilet stayed clean thanks to five gallons of rushing water pouring through it after each flush.

    These were great cultural and civilizational achievements. In a state of nature, the problem of human waste and what to do about it is persistent. Do the wrong thing and you spread disease and misery.

    Indoor plumbing since the time of the ancient world has been a sign of prosperity and human well-being. Indoor toilets that flow into a sewer have been around since 1500 B.C., but every new settlement of people in a new area presents the problem anew. In rural America, indoor toilets weren’t common until the 1930s. That today everyone assumes them to be part of life is a testament to the creative power of economic progress.

    “Capitalism achieved something spectacular in waste disposal. Government came along and took it away from us.”What we have in these regulations passed since the 1990s is therefore a step backwards from a central aspiration of mankind to dispose of human waste in the best possible way. We have here an instance of government having forced society into a lower stage of existence.

    Government has reduced us as people to the point that we either have to enter the black market to get good sewage or come to terms with living amidst periodic spreading of human waste all over our domestic and commercial environment.

    Again, this is wholly unnecessary. Capitalism achieved something spectacular in waste disposal. Government came along and took it away from us. That’s the story in a nutshell.

    Today, every toilet company touts its latest innovations to overcome the problem. There are high-pressure blasters that run off electricity, designed to force a paltry 1.6 gallons of water through fast enough to make the difference. They are shockingly loud and scary. There are new shapes of tanks and new flow mechanisms that are said to compensate for the calamity, but this works only some of the time.

    Each of these innovations is patented — meaning that a successful project cannot be copied and improved by other companies. So even if these are improvements, their distribution is limited and the successful aspects of them are not extended by others, for fear of patent lawsuits. The entire market is hobbled.

    The result is an entire society of poorly working toilets and a life of adjustment to the omnipresence of human feces, all in a short 15 years. Thanks so much, Congress!

    Of course the environmentalists are in on the whole project. They started telling us back in the 1970s that our large tanks were sheer waste. We should put bricks in them to save and conserve. If you didn’t have a brick in your toilet, you were considered irresponsible and a social misfit. Eventually of course the brick became, in effect, a mandate, and finally toilets were reduced to one third of their previous size.

    Back then, it was just assumed that toilet manufacturers cared nothing at all about wasting water. Surely there was no rationale at all for why they consumed five gallons per flush as opposed to 1.6 gallons. This is just capitalist excess and down with it!

    Well, think again: there was wisdom in those old designs. The environmentalists didn’t account for the present reality in which people typically flush twice, three times, or even four times during a single toilet event. Whether or not this ends up using more or less in the long run is entirely an empirical question, but let us just suppose that the new microtanks do indeed save water. In the same way, letting people die of infections conserves antibiotics, not brushing teeth conserves toothpaste, and not using anesthesia during surgery conserves needles and syringes.

    Here is the truth that environmentalists do not face: Sometimes conserving is not a good idea. There are some life activities that cry out for the expenditure of resources, even in the most generous possible way. I would count waste disposal as one of those.

    It is also possible that some people just like to get their kicks out of spreading misery and making it impossible for us to enjoy a clean and prosperous life. Like Puritans of old, they see virtue in suffering and would like to see ever more of it. It sounds perverse, but such an ethos does exist. And clearly, government doesn’t care in the slightest.

    There are many tragedies associated with the toilet calamity. There are private embarrassments at guest houses and disgust at every turn. Many of the customers at that Chinese takeout probably blame the owners, who themselves are probably mystified as to why toilets in communist China probably worked just fine but in capitalist America are throwing filth all over their restaurant.

    It’s the hidden hand of government that has mandated this leap back to barbarism.

    • Good Morning!

      Should be an interesting discussion today, we have toilets, negros, IRS, C-Span calling out the idiot POTUS, and some politician who is “party first” instead of people first.

      First, less water to flush provides jobs. Who else will unplug the dreaded mess? They should make it .80 gallons, equal to the limit of alcohol in your system that gets you arrested. At .80 GPF, it could almost eliminate the welfare rolls 🙂

      Posting for comments.

      G!

      • A Puritan Descendant says:

        .80 gallons of alcohol in my system? They would not need to arrest me, I would be dead. 🙂

      • Doesn’t the one singer say she only uses one square of tp? How come we don’t see a push to reduce the amount of tp we use on a large scale government awareness campaign?

        • You would think that the evirons…would at least be upset with Washington DC. They put out so much crap there it must be killing rain forests in South America just to provide that much paperwork. But that is the government for ya…everything in triplicate…including toilet paper.

          • “they put out so much crap”…..

            you would think they would need to bring back the old toilets because of this fact…

        • Don’t be surprised if that is next…

        • Don’t give the enviro-Mentals any ideas! LOL!!!

    • v. Holland says:

      If you have an old dishwasher-keep it until it dies-the new ones won’t dry your dishes-another new regulation.

  6. Good Morning All,

    I wanted to show this article. It was sent to me from a friend of mine in LA. The reason I wanted to show it is because the same thing happen to my brother.
    Around last June my brother (along with his neighbors) received a letter from FEMA and his bank stating that their subdivison was now in a flood zone, and since he has a active loan still, he would be require to buy flood insurance. They were classified as a High Risk Flood zone at that. The nearest water is 15 miles away, which is a man made pond which has no water in it. Fema said that if that pond was filled they are in danger of flooding. His flood insurance is $450 a month.

    So everyone fought this for about 9 months, and won. Not only did they win, but they received a refund on what flood insurance they had purchased so far.

    I thought this just does not happen. Then this was sent to me. Unbelievable.

    Thought I would share with everyone here.

    • ummmm….what was sent to you? Or am I the only one that did not get it.

    • The flood zones are really messed up. There are a lot of places that flood often that are not in a “flood zone” so they cannot get flood insurance, so when a flood happens they have to hope for a disaster zone to be declared to be able to rebuild. In Hawaii they redid the volcano risk zones recently and everyone feared their insurance would go up or be dropped in places that the risk is almost nothing.

    • Ellen,

      Good post! Consider the IRS and FEMA, both large, bureaucratic government agencies, with increasingly complex rules and regulations, and little, if any accountability. Both parties like complex laws that make it harder to hold them accountable. And how many more agencies do we have to answer to?
      The EPA has agents carrying guns, Americans have been arrested for letting their hedge grow to tall, OSHA, I’m expecting a no knock OSHA warrant to seize my unsafe ladders. Next, that agency controlling the waterways will
      inspect my ditch and gutters.

    • http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-flood-maps4-2010jan04,0,6016681.story

      Sorry guys I was writing faster than my brain was working this morning. Here is the article!

      Ellen

  7. Chris Dodd will fall on his sword today to insure Connecticut will remain in the Democrat fold. He is joining a growing list of retirees and party changers. If we are lucky maybe a fee more of these lowlifes will leave.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/us_democrats2010

    • I sure heard an optimistic prediction today….from, no less, a supposedly democratic observer…. 45 house seats and 11 senate seats possible change. Interesting if not misinformation.

      realistically, he said 25-30 house seats and 8 senate seats…but that some of the more conservative dems may move parties if the trend grows. Interesting but possible misinformation. I cannot confirm the source….heard it on the radio…although I was surfing through both liberal and conservative talk shows…this was on a liberal talk show.

    • I suspect he is trying to leave the scene of his crimes before he is brought to justice. (Is there such a thing in Washington?)

  8. The steady rise in oil prices seems to be missed by the MSM.

    I suggest everyone else not ignore it. It is a dangerous sign. Petro-dollars rising is often the ‘canary in the mine’ for inflation.

  9. Arkansas Senators Blanche Lincoln and Mark Pryor are back home talking about their good work in passing the Senate Health Care bill.

    But here are a few things you need to know about the Senate Health Care bill that our Senators would rather not talk about. The following information has been condensed from a Wall Street Journal Article (Change Nobody Believes In from 12.21.2009. You can see the full article by clicking here).

    1) Health costs will go up. From the outset, the White House’s core claim was that reform would reduce health costs for individuals and businesses, and they’re sticking to that story. “Anyone who says otherwise simply hasn’t read the bills,” Mr. Obama said over the weekend. This is so utterly disingenuous that we doubt the President really believes it.

    The best and most rigorous cost analysis was recently released by the insurer WellPoint, which mined its actuarial data in various regional markets to model the Senate bill. WellPoint found that a healthy 25-year-old in Milwaukee buying coverage on the individual market will see his costs rise by 178%. A small business based in Richmond with eight employees in average health will see a 23% increase. Insurance costs for a 40-year-old family with two kids living in Indianapolis will pay 106% more. And on and on.

    These increases are solely the result of ObamaCare—above and far beyond the status quo—because its strict restrictions on underwriting and risk-pooling would distort insurance markets. All but a handful of states have rejected regulations like “community rating” because they encourage younger and healthier buyers to wait until they need expensive care, increasing costs for everyone. Benefits and pricing will now be determined by politics.

    2) Steep declines in choice and quality. This is all of a piece with the hubris of an Administration that thinks it can substitute government planning for market forces in determining where the $33 trillion the U.S. will spend on medicine over the next decade should go.

    This centralized system means above all fewer choices; what works for the political class must work for everyone. The Congressional Budget Office argued recently that the Senate bill would so “substantially reduce flexibility in terms of the types, prices, and number of private sellers of health insurance” that companies like WellPoint might need to “be considered part of the federal budget.”

    With so large a chunk of the economy and medical practice itself in Washington’s hands, quality will decline. Ultimately, “our capacity to innovate and develop new therapies would suffer most of all,” as Harvard Medical School Dean Jeffrey Flier recently wrote in our pages. Take the $2 billion annual tax—rising to $3 billion in 2018—that will be leveled against medical device makers, among the most innovative U.S. industries. Democrats believe that more advanced health technologies like MRI machines and drug-coated stents are driving costs too high, though patients and their physicians might disagree.

    “The Senate isn’t hearing those of us who are closest to the patient and work in the system every day,” Brent Eastman, the chairman of the American College of Surgeons, said in a statement for his organization and 18 other speciality societies opposing ObamaCare. For no other reason than ideological animus, doctor-owned hospitals will face harsh new limits on their growth and who they’re allowed to treat. Physician Hospitals of America says that ObamaCare will “destroy over 200 of America’s best and safest hospitals.”

    3) It will blow up the federal deficit. Even though Medicare’s unfunded liabilities are already about 2.6 times larger than the entire U.S. economy in 2008, Democrats are crowing that ObamaCare will cost “only” $871 billion over the next decade while fantastically reducing the deficit by $132 billion, according to CBO.

    Yet some 98% of the total cost comes after 2014—remind us why there must absolutely be a vote this week—and most of the taxes start in 2010. That includes the payroll tax increase for individuals earning more than $200,000 that rose to 0.9 from 0.5 percentage points in Mr. Reid’s final machinations. Job creation, here we come.

    Other deceptions include a new entitlement for long-term care that starts collecting premiums tomorrow but doesn’t start paying benefits until late in the decade. But the worst is not accounting for a formula that automatically slashes Medicare payments to doctors by 21.5% next year and deeper after that. Everyone knows the payment cuts won’t happen but they remain in the bill to make the cost look lower. The American Medical Association’s priority was eliminating this “sustainable growth rate” but all they got in return for their year of ObamaCare cheerleading was a two-month patch snuck into the defense bill that passed over the weekend.

    The truth is that no one really knows how much ObamaCare will cost because its assumptions on paper are so unrealistic. To hide the cost increases created by other parts of the bill and transfer them onto the federal balance sheet, the Senate sets up government-run “exchanges” that will subsidize insurance for those earning up to 400% of the poverty level, or $96,000 for a family of four in 2016. Supposedly they would only be offered to those whose employers don’t provide insurance or work for small businesses.

    As Eugene Steuerle of the left-leaning Urban Institute points out, this system would treat two workers with the same total compensation—whatever the mix of cash wages and benefits—very differently. Under the Senate bill, someone who earned $42,000 would get $5,749 from the current tax exclusion for employer-sponsored coverage but $12,750 in the exchange. A worker making $60,000 would get $8,310 in the exchanges but only $3,758 in the current system.

    As more and more people flood into “free” health care, taxpayer costs will explode.

    I hope that you will do two things today to protect freedom. Call Senator Lincoln at 1-800-352-9364 and Senator Mark Pryor at (877) 259-9602 and tell them they got the prescription for health care reform WRONG. Tell them to STOP spending our children’s opportunities.

    As the bill moves into conference committee, it is more important than ever to let our representatives know how we feel. As Thomas Payne said, “What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed, if so celestial an article as Freedom should not be highly rated.”

  10. Winter Could Be Worst in 25 Years for USA…
    CHILL MAP…
    Britain’s big snow shuts cities…
    GAS SUPPLIES RUNNING OUT IN UK…
    Elderly burn books for warmth?
    Army drafted to rescue 1,000 snow stranded motorists…
    Vermont sets ‘all-time record for one snowstorm’…
    Iowa temps ‘a solid 30 degrees below normal’…
    Seoul buried in heaviest snowfall in 70 years…
    3 die in fire at Detroit home; power was cut…
    Midwest Sees Near-Record Lows, Snow By The Foot…
    Miami shivers from coldest weather in decade; Florida Gov Signs Emergency Order …
    Cold snap spurs power rationing in China…

    Headlines on Drudge….
    …and yet, Global Warmers continue to repeat their mantra…

    • They have repeated their mantra so many times, I believe even they now believe it!

    • I think that they should have stuck with their original predictions in the 1970’s of a new ice age.

    • Come on Black Flag, you know better than this!! 🙂 All these stories are about weather, not climate.

      Climate change has all kinds of impacts on weather. It can cause all kinds of extreme weather – hot, cold, floods, droughts. Weather is affected by many things like the jet stream and ocean currents, which can be impacted by climate change.

      The extreme weather you list is actually an indication of climate change.

      • Come on, Todd!

        When the summer has a heat wave, the AGW claimed “Global Warming”

        Live by the sword, die by the sword. If the AGW claim mere weather is climate change – so be it!

        Extreme weather is NOT an indicator of climate change! That is a junk science claim.

        Gore and his zealots have made all sorts of bizarre claims of climate – for example, increasing hurricanes (they’ve decreased), droughts and floods (kinda contradictory, not?) regardless is a factor not of climate, but of the ENSO, etc.

        Extreme weather is a just sign of weather in a system of chaos.

      • Todd:

        Then why were they using warming trends in weather to claim that man caused Climate Change was real?

        So in your mind, hot dry weather in a region means climate change, to a warmer situation caused by man.

        Cold wet weather in a region means climate change, to a warmer situation caused by man.

        How convenient. No matter what the weather and now matter how long the deviations from the predicted, you come up with man caused climate change.

        You seem to forget that under the global warming mantra that average temps continue to rise with no major fluctuation or decline.

        Busted dreams are the hardest to let go.

        • JAC,
          The key word is trend. A weather system or two is not a trend. If you would like to see trends in record temperatures:

          http://www.ucar.edu/news/releases/2009/maxmin.jsp

          “Even in the first nine months of this year, when the United States cooled somewhat after a string of unusually warm years, the ratio of record daily high to record daily low temperatures was more than three to two.”

          “Despite the increasing number of record highs, there will still be occasional periods of record cold.”

          • How nice the trend ends in 2000.

            Kinda ignores the falling temp. from 2001 to current – completely contrary to the AGW hypothesis. Darn, huh?

            The problem with such superficial analysis is that it tends to confuse causation with correlation.

            The author failed to recognize that the ESNO’s el Nino was roaring in the Pacific. And, of course, when it flipped (as it does every 10 years or so) to an El Nina, it cools.

            Gee, I wonder if that is important?

            • I thought you went back in your cave to hide? 😉

              Are you going to explain your contradiction in using misleading information to try to make your point above, simply because others have done it?

              Your original post was about extreme and record low temperatures indicating warming is not occurring. I’m simply pointing out that the extremes that are happening this week are just weather and not a trend.

              How nice the trend ends in 2000.

              Looks like the warming trend continues to me. Do you have any references to back up this claim?

          • How many summers has the media run multiple stories about the N. pole soon to be ice free due to global warming?

            How many times has it happened?

            How many retractions did the media then make?

            How many stories were there on tho N. pole not melting, as reported?

            http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/04/26/ice-at-the-north-pole-in-1958-not-so-thick/

            • LOI,
              That’s a cool story about the subs at the north pole. The story itself explains how they were able to surface:

              “the Skate found open water both in the summer and following winter. We surfaced near the North Pole in the winter through thin ice less than 2 feet thick. The ice moves from Alaska to Iceland and the wind and tides causes open water as the ice breaks up. The Ice at the polar ice cap is an average of 6-8 feet thick, but with the wind and tides the ice will crack and open into large polynyas (areas of open water), these areas will refreeze over with thin ice. We had sonar equipment that would find these open or thin areas to come up through, thus limiting any damage to the submarine. The ice would also close in and cover these areas crushing together making large ice ridges both above and below the water. We came up through a very large opening in 1958 that was 1/2 mile long and 200 yards wide. The wind came up and closed the opening within 2 hours. On both trips we were able to find open water. We were not able to surface through ice thicker than 3 feet.”

              I don’t see how this says anything about global warming?

              I’d bet the same sub would find more areas where it could surface today. Have you found any current stories are subs at the north pole?

              The predictions about the arctic being ice free range from 2013 to 2030. There have been no retractions because it’s not 2013 yet.

          • Todd:

            Lets look at just once claim made by the “scientists” in this report.

            “If temperatures were not warming, the number of record daily highs and lows being set each year would be approximately even.”

            FALSE

            The high temps could decline without changing the record lows and the average temp would be in decline.

            And of course there is the first sentence which clearly claims that temps are due to a warming “climate”. Yet you say we can not make claims about the “climate” based on regional weather. So which is it?

            As Flag said above. Correlation and cause/effect are very different. Remember a post not long ago here showing temps had not varied in the USA over past decades in rural areas but had increased in urban areas. If climate is causing the change then why didn’t it show up in the rural areas?

            One thing for sure. The future will bring periods of severe cold and severe heat and everything in between.

            I guarantee it.

            • Todd:

              That was me. Would someone please explain how that stupid Snap On name suddenly over rides our name.

            • Snap, 😉
              It’s the trends that matter. This study doesn’t prove anything in and of itself, but it’s part of the body of research the indicates global warming is occurring.

              • Todd, maybe there has been global warming, the earth has done that before, it will cool, like before. There is no scientific proof that it’s AGW.

                Where I live, there hasn’t been any warming at all, it’s cold, and it’s snowy, just like the last 44 years has been. All of our High temp records are still from the 1930’s. Maybe if they could get their temp readings from somewhere away from manmade heating sources, like cities and buildings, they could get it closer to right. Hope you are doing well today, May the New Year bring you prosperity and happiness!

                G!

              • G-Man,
                Cold and snowy in northern Wisconsin too – just the way I like it!!

                A good day and New Year to you too! And if global warming turns out to be not true, I will be one of the happiest people around!!

              • replied at bottom. I’ll be happy too, but they will find something else to try and take our money

              • Todd:

                I won’t. Because we are due for another ice cap advance.

                I’ll take the warming.

                By the way, no one is disputing that there has been warming. Not even the skeptics. It is that CO2 is the primary cause.

                It simply doesn’t fit and the existing conditions violate the predictions of the models that assumed CO2 to be the driving force.

                And that was the point BF was making with posting the cold temperatures. The same ancedotal information has been used to justify manmade warming. But when the same type information shows cooling it is ignored or explained away as an anomoly.

              • JAC,
                I don’t think the CO2 is the primary cause of global warming. The earth is still recovering from the last ice age 12,000 years ago. But CO2 has been increasing since the start of the industrial revolution. Much of that had been absorbed by plants and oceans, but those systems have been reaching their limits on how much they can absorb while our emissions have skyrocketed. The increase in CO2 is last straw that breaks the camel’s back.

                Weather/climate will always vary from day to day, year to year, but the trend has been up, and the rate of change has been faster than the historical climate change the earth has experienced.

                I just saw your response to Buck about the tea parties as an “additive” effect, not the sole catlyst. That’s how I see climate change – there are a lot of factors, and we don’t understand all of them, but the increases in CO2 are pushing us over the edge.

              • Todd,

                Your CO2 hypothesis has been shown to be incorrect.

                http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/12/091230184221.htm

                No Rise of Airborne Fraction of Carbon Dioxide in Past 150 Years, New Research Finds

              • http://www.biomind.de/realCO2/realCO2-1.htm

                I know Beck as a non-commenting reviewer on one of his first papers on C02 back a few years ago.

      • It might be climate charge or not, but either way, it doesn’t prove that it is caused by humans….

  11. Judy Sabatini says:

    Hey All

    So much for honesty.

    Hope you’re all doing well today.

    http://www.breitbart.tv/the-c-span-lie-did-obama-really-promise-televised-healthcare-negotiations/

  12. Judy Sabatini says:

    American Majority Senators Chris Dodd of Connecticut and Byron Dorgan of North Dakota, as well as Colorado Governor Bill Ritter have dropped plans to seek re-election.

    What do you think this means for 2010, both political parties, and the country?

  13. Strange news for the day, there is definitely diversity in Washington politics.

    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/2010/01/04/2010-01-04_cmklzcxmxcz.html

    • Bama

      Well I didnt see this. The part that drives me crazy is no talks about whether she is good for the job. DOnt hire me because I am gay, hire me because I am best for the damn job.

      • Hi Ellen,

        I feel the same way about being a woman in a predominately male dominated field. Hire me because I’m knowledgable and professional, not because I am presumed to have female reporductive organs.

        • Sorry Cyndi P but Amanda/Mitchell does not have female reproductive organs; I’m not really sure what is under the hood. But hey my motto is “to each his own”. As long as she/he paid for it, have at it.

          • IHey Bama,

            I was referring to MY reproductive organs, or should I say whats left of ’em, LOL! But I’m with you, “to each their own”. If Amanda is the most qualified person for the job, then fine. If Amanda got the job based primarily on the transgendered qaulities, than I throw the BS flag. All jobs, including mine, should be awarded on whether or not the person was the best available candidate based on qualifications for that job. What does being transgendered have to do with high level commerce? If Amanda was hired to run a clinic where transgender surgeries are performed, then being transgendered is probably relevant.

    • I’m starting to think we DO live in the matrix

  14. Realization . . .

    My dog sleeps about 20 hours a day. He has his food prepared for him. He can eat whenever he wants, 24/7/365. His meals are provided at no cost to him. He visits the Dr. once a year for his checkup, and again during the year if any medical needs arise. For this He pays nothing, and nothing is required of him. He lives in a nice neighborhood in a house that is much larger than He needs, but He is not required to do any upkeep. If He makes a mess, someone else cleans it up. He has his choice of luxurious places to sleep. He receives these accommodations absolutely free. He is living like a king, and has absolutely no expenses whatsoever. All of his costs are picked up by others who go out and earn a living every day. I was just thinking about all this, and suddenly it hit me like a brick in the head, Holy Shit, my dog is a democrat !

    • Judy Sabatini says:

      Hi D13

      Then that would make most, if not all dogs and cats for that matter Democrats, wouldn’t it. Haven’t had any animal yet that did anything around the house, except for the cats, who occasionally bring in a mouse or two, or a bird. I guess those are considered gifts for what I do for them. Payback I presume.

      Hope you’re doing well today Col.

    • A Puritan Descendant says:

      Your dog repays you with Love. A democrat will demand you give him more.

      • Judy Sabatini says:

        Then I guess I’m well loved, because my dog is always at my side. He’s a pretty good guard and watch dog too. Brindle boxer by the name of Bruno, and I wouldn’t trade him for anything, he’s my buddy.

      • Puritan, you are so right.

    • Kristian Stout says:

      That does it! When I die, I want to come back as a dog!

    • D13,
      I guess “smarter than the average dog” doesn’t apply to Republicans!! 🙂

    • But D13, you have chosen to support him.

      Next year Pelosi is going to make you pay to feed and house Todd’s Doxin.

    • Conservatives don’t consider themselves to be pets. Liberals seem to want to be pets when they grow up. Some of them already think of themselves as O’s pet.

    • LOL very good D13

  15. v. Holland says:

    They changed the filibuster law in 1975, now they want to change it again. They really overestimate the importance of their time and really hate anything that actually attempts to stop them from rushing their crap through.

    Harkin to reintroduce bill to bust filibusters
    By Jordan Fabian – 12/27/09 08:51 AM ET

    Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) said Saturday that he plans to reintroduce legislation to reform the filibuster process in the Senate.

    The top senator on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee said that he will once again attempt to pass the bill he first introduced in 1995 when Democrats were the minority party.

    “I’m going to reintroduce that again in January,” Harkin told the Washington Post’s Ezra Klein. “And people are going to say I only worry about this because I’m in the majority. But I come with clean hands! I started when I was in the minority!”

    Harkin’s comments come as the filibuster has come under fire from Democrats and liberal interest groups. Thay say that the requirement that the Senate need a 60 vote supermajority to approve procedural motions makes it too difficult to move significant legislation like healthcare reform. Some liberals blamed the filibuster for the removal of certain provisions favored by liberals such as the public health insurance option and the Medicare buy-in proposal.

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) struck the measures as part of an effort to attract holdout centrist senators. Reid neeeded to bring together all 60 members of the Democratic caucus to proceed toward a vote on healthcare reform.

    But Harkin says that the filibuster is now being abused by Republicans who are using it too frequently and on noncontroversial measures, making it difficult to get things done in the Senate.

    The Iowa senator said that a GOP filibuster on the unemployment extension that attracted 97 votes and early procedural votes on healthcare were out of line.

    “You’re supposed to filibuster something that is a deep seated issue,” he said. “The idea is to give some time for extended debate but eventually allow a majority to work its will. I do believe there’s some reason to have extended debate.”

    Harkin’s plan would reduce the amount of votes needed to break a filibuster the longer it goes on. Senators would need 60 votes to break the first vote but then the amount of votes needed would drop to 57, then 54 votes and finally 51 votes.

    “If a group of senators filibusters a bill, you want to take their worries seriously,” he said. “Make sure you’re not missing something. My proposal will do that.”

    Harkin compared what Republican effort to stymie the Democrats in the Senate to former House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s (R-Ga.) strategy of stalling the Democrats in the House when the GOP was in the minority.

    “The situation in the Senate is an offshoot of the old Newt Gingrich philosophy,” he said. “Took them 10 years, or even more. But it was a constant attack. And now it looks like they’re trying to do that in the Senate.”

    Harkin also blamed Republican leaders for not reigning in members who constantly try to filibuster legislation, like Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), who is known as “Dr. No.”

    “You don’t have a minority leader putting them in check, saying we have to work together,” he said. “[Former Seante Republican leader Bob] Dole would never put up with what’s going on over there. Neither would [former Senate Republican leader] Trent Lott.”

  16. Everyone remember Obamma meeting behind closed doors with the pharmacy companies?

    From the Douglas Report

    The feds think we need some help dealing with prescription painkiller abuse.

    Get ready for the punchline here — because you’ll laugh until it hurts so bad you may need those drugs yourself.

    Big Brother has turned to Big Pharma to help curb the abuse of opioid meds, which include morphine, oxycodone and methadone. And the drug makers have responded by calling for voluntary training for doctors and pharmacists… from the feds.

    Naturally, they want you, Mr. and Mrs. American Taxpayer, to pay for it.

    That’s what you get when you ask for Big Pharma’s help dealing with the problems created by their own meds.

    Self-regulation has been a clear failure when it comes to drugs. Companies are routinely fined hundreds of millions and even billions of dollars for shifty, shady practices like illegal marketing.

    And somehow, we’re supposed to trust THEM to come up with a risk-management plan to guide docs and pharmacists.

    Isn’t that what the feds are supposed to be doing? If drug safety isn’t one of the prime functions of the FDA, someone please tell me what is.

    Opioid painkillers caused 13,800 deaths in 2006 alone. In other words, in a single year these drugs alone killed more Americans than swine flu ever has, and probably ever will. In fact, these killer meds were responsible for 40 percent of all poisoning deaths that year.

    And those aren’t even the scary numbers!

    What’s really frightening is that 5.2 million Americans ADMIT to using these drugs inappropriately, according to a recent survey. And that doesn’t take into consideration all the users who won’t acknowledge their painkiller problem, and all the folks who simply lie about their drug use.

    And Big Pharma won’t stop there, either. They’ve quietly gotten untold numbers hooked on these powerful and addictive meds for unproven off-label uses like migraine headaches.

    But to the drug companies, these aren’t millions of people with opioid problems. They’re top customers — and anything that cuts back on their numbers will reduce profits.

    So sure… they’ll help all right. They’ll help make sure there are no real changes to the status quo.

    The FDA only wants “more specifics” from Big Pharma on its plan, but I can tell you specifically right now that it stinks.

    The companies want the Drug Enforcement Agency to offer voluntary training to doctors and pharmacists.

    Never mind that the DEA currently does no such thing. Never mind that only an act of Congress could make that happen. Never mind that this plan shifts the burden of addictive drugs to the taxpayers. Never mind that it wouldn’t stop the army of Big Pharma pushers… er… salesman from undoing any negative effects of a brief government-sponsored training seminar.

    But that’s what happens when you let the crooks make their own rules.

  17. Judy Sabatini says:
  18. Judy, how about a roadtrip to Las Vegas tomorrow? Hubby is gone, right? Hit the road and visit your “beloved” Harry!

    Senator Reid’s Health Care Update Event

    http://michellemalkin.com/2010/01/06/tea-party-alert-harry-reid-in-las-vegas-to-shill-for-demcare-tomorrow/

    • Judy Sabatini says:

      Hey Kathy

      Uh NOOOO! I wouldn’t waste my gas or money to go see, or listen to that lying hypocrite.

      Hope you’re having a good day.

      • Actually I’m serious about you going….but not in his support.

        • Judy Sabatini says:

          Okay, I give up. Why should I go?

          • Just as a show that you are not for the healthcare reform bill that he is touting. Consider it investigative journalism and you can report back to us what all went on. Make sure you take your camera and don’t get into any fights with SEIU thugs who are sure to show up.

            • Judy Sabatini says:

              Sorry Kathy, but Vegas is the last place I’d go too. Besides, circumstances prevent me from going.

              I sent him that letter that Anita wrote here the other day, Anita, I hope you don’t mind that I borrowed it, I put his name on it.

              I’ll wait until he comes to Reno, then maybe I’ll go and pay my respects. I’ll make that sign that G saw on a T-shirt, maybe that will get his attention.

    • Judy Sabatini says:

      His son Rory Reid is now in the running stage for Gov, and he thinks he can do marvelous things here in Nevada, to keep up the good work he says his dad is doing. Damn near choked when I heard that one.

  19. Judy Sabatini says:

    MICHAEL GOODWIN: Obama Keeps Flirting With Disaster

    By Michael Goodwin

    On vacation in Hawaii when the 3 a.m. phone call came, Obama and his team hit the snooze button. Will they ever wake up?

    Someday, somebody — not from Hollywood — will make a movie about President Obama’s disastrous Christmas vacation. About how his aides waited for nearly three hours after the Christmas airliner attack to wake him. About how he waited three more days to appear publicly. About how even then, he didn’t grasp the seriousness of the situation, racing through a bloodless speech so he could play golf.

    Until that film is made, reality is frightening enough. Even the true believers in the White House now realize they blew the response to a potentially catastrophic attack by an Al Qaeda-trained terrorist.

    When the alarm first went off — the 3 a.m. phone call — they hit the snooze button, putting the president’s personal comfort ahead of the country’s.

    Everything since has been damage control, including yesterday’s endlessly advertised meeting with his national security team. Obama’s remarks afterward were direct and forceful, but the door of doubt about his national security leadership has been blown off the hinges.

    The images that stick are the ones out of Hawaii, with the president in vacation mode — no tie, a perfunctory appearance on Dec. 28, no questions, then off for more fun in the sun. Behavior doesn’t get less serious or more callow.

    The images accurately reflect a troubling mindset that borders on religious faith about how to combat terrorism, with Obama himself the high priest. He is a war president who defiantly shuns the mantle.

    So be it. The Oval Office and the choices are his. And so is the responsibility.

    If America gets hit again, it’s on him. All of it.

    Obama often complains about the problems he inherited from George W. Bush, but he also inherited a record of zero successful attacks on America after 9/11. If Islamic terrorists succeed on his watch, he can’t blame Bush.

    Not after he has made a series of important choices that make the country less safe than it was. Dick Cheney is hardly alone in this belief.

    From prosecuting CIA agents who acted in good faith to freeing Gitmo prisoners to putting Khalid Sheik Mohammed in New York’s civilian courts, Obama is fighting the war on terror his way. His continuing determination to close Gitmo smacks of a dogma untroubled by facts or common sense.

    It is his burden. He and he alone will own the results, just as Bush will go down in history as the president who failed to connect the dots that could have prevented 9/11.

    In theory, Obama knows as much. In practice, it is hard to imagine how he would live with himself if the vast security apparatus constructed since that awful day failed on his watch, leaving thousands, perhaps tens of thousands dead.

    Would he second-guess himself? Would he wonder if there was something he could have or should have done?

    He wouldn’t be human if he didn’t. Yet how then to explain his determined willfulness to test the limits of the enemy’s good will? How to explain his trust in a rational reaction from people who have repeatedly demonstrated their fanatical adherence to a murderous cult?

    Even now, as he sends 30,000 more troops to Afghanistan, he rolls out the welcome mat at home. The offer of a lawyer and the presumption of innocence to the Nigerian who tried to blow up 300 people over Detroit is exactly what the far-left ideologues of the American Civil Liberties Union would do. That the president of the United States does it means he is operating from the fringes of American society.

    No president in modern times has ever strayed so far from the center. No commander-in-chief has ever been as optimistic about a savage enemy.

    Barack Obama is flirting with unprecedented disaster. His and America’s.

  20. Speaking of Tea Parties…..

    First paragraph from a newsletter of one of the groups that participates in this movement.

    “There is much talk of the formation of a third political party based on the tea party movement. In Florida, a Democratic operative with absolutely no connection to the tea party movement has filed papers to form a third party called the Florida Tea Party. He has issued legal threats against local tea parties demanding that they cease using the name “Florida Tea Party.”

    So here’s the dems latest strategy? Hijack the name Tea Party to confuse citizens. Desperate people do desparate things. This goes along with the other Dem strategy of getting the SofS in each state to be from the D party so they can manipulate any election that doesn’t go their way. What a pathetic, sleazy party.

  21. SUFA

    Following is a link to a lecture by Amy Chua on her thesis regarding hyper powers and diversity/tolerance. I posted another last night for V. Holland so some of this will be a repeat if you watched that one.

    But I urge you to watch all 10 segments, about 9 minutes each. The one here is the first.

    Pay close attention to some of the subtle reasons and assumptions and explanations given that fall outside her primary thesis. After you get to the 5th pay closer attention. Even more when you get to the question and answer period. You will find a most interesting perspective shared by all regarding the T Party and other Conservatives view on immigration and globalization.

    I think you will find this very enlightening regarding the neo-con and modern liberal thinking about globalization/democracy/capitalism, etc.

    Happy thinking

    JAC

    • Everybody:

      This was the third post I made from this author and I haven’t hear one comment made yet.

      I know V.Holland watched those yesterday and is still mulling over the stuff.

      But what about the rest of you?

      Surely by now you have all found a ton of things in Ms Chua’s work that would set you off, one way or the other.

      • I’d love to watch the videos, but can’t get them to download on this slow connection :o(

        Best wishes on your surgery, JAC. I’ll keep you in my thoughts. I’ll send some warm wishes to you….

  22. Something funny that makes a statement.

  23. An interview with Loiis CK on the above routine.

    Reveals some of his intent………..the comedian appears smarter than the TIMES interviewer.

  24. Remember this vote on Christmas Eve?

    US Avoids Technical Default By Three Days

    http://www.zerohedge.com/article/us-avoids-technical-default-three-days

    How do these people sleep at night and look themselves in the mirror when they get up in the morning?

    • Kathy,

      Let’s be clear – the Federal government cannot go bankrupt.

      It prints money. It can always repay those that gave the government pieces of paper with newly printed paper.

      This ‘debt’ ceiling was pablum for the masses. “See, we are forcing ourselves to be good boys with the credit card”.

      They didn’t say “We set our own credit limit”.

      • Well that’s my point, they didn’t force themselves to be good boys – they just raised their limit and kept on spending. How can they vote to increase the limit, then vote to spend more, then vote to increase the limit again and on and on.

        At some point don’t even they start to think..wow, this is so wrong?

        I mean, even I, when I’m out Christmas shopping for others and find a really cute pair of boots for me, and I know that ’tis the season for giving not receiving, I can’t come home with them. Limits are limits.

  25. Humor is good….

    Ray, know you are a big fan of Media Matters and also in your new kinder, gentler, liberal ways, will appreciate this:

    http://www.thefoxnation.com/media/2010/01/06/video-nerdy-parasites-media-matters

    • That was funny! Here’s one for you:

      > A professor at the University of Mississippi was giving a lecture on
      > “Involuntary Muscular Contractions” to his first year medical students.
      > Realizing this was not the most riveting subject, the professor decided
      > to lighten the mood slightly. He pointed to a young woman in the front
      > row and said, “Do you know what your ass hole is doing while you’re
      > having an orgasm?”
      >
      > She replied, “Probably deer hunting with his buddies..”
      >
      > It took 45 minutes to restore order in the classroom.

      • OMG…..

      • The Itch

        Once upon a time lived a beautiful Queen with large breasts. Nick the Dragon Slayer obsessed over the Queen for this reason. He knew that the penalty for his desire would be death should he try to touch them, but he had to try. One day Nick revealed his secret desire to his colleague, Horatio the Physician, the King’s chief doctor. Horatio thought about this and said that he could arrange for Nick to more than satisfy his desire, but it would cost him 1000 gold coins to arrange it. Without pause Nick readily agreed to the scheme.

        The next day, Horatio made a batch of itching powder and poured a little bit into the Queen’s bra while she bathed. Soon after she dressed, the itching commenced and grew intense. Upon being summoned to the Royal Chambers to address this incident, Horatio informed the King and Queen that only special saliva, if applied for four hours, would cure this type of itch, and that tests had shown that only the saliva of Nick would work as the antidote to cure the itch.

        The King, eager to help his Queen, quickly summoned Nick to their chambers. Horatio then slipped Nick the antidote for the itching powder, which he put into his mouth, and for the next four hours, Nick worked passionately on the Queen’s large and magnificent breasts. The Queen’s itching was eventually relieved, and Nick left satisfied and hailed as a hero. Upon returning to his chamber, Nick found Horatio demanding his payment of 1,000 gold coins. With his obsession now satisfied, Nick couldn’t have cared less and, knowing that Horatio could never report this matter to the King and with a laugh told him to get lost.

        The next day, Horatio slipped a massive dose of the same itching powder into the King’s underwear. The King immediately summoned Nick.

        The moral of the story…………

        Pay your bills!

  26. The Liberals have gone mad!!!

    http://www.thefoxnation.com/washington-state/2010/01/06/9th-circuit-rules-felons-can-vote-wa

    Apparently the lefties feel they need all the votes they can get. I wonder if things will explode if the immigrants get amnesty?

    G!

    • GMan

      I wish your conclusion was true. It would be less evil that the true basis for the decision.

      The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals goes down right after or on the same day as the Fed.

      This needs to be appealed to the Supremes. But the state is run by D’s so they may not appeal if they actually like the idea. But it is a pretty strong law and order state also, so the public might come unglued if they don’t appeal.

      Peace and freedom my friend
      JAC

      • Hi JAC!

        It just seems to get crazier by the day. You put a big smile on my face, so I’ll tell you why. 🙂

        You gave me an idea! One that I will use many times daily throughout my travels, and it was so simple, I wish I would have thought of it.

        From this day forward, since most people that know me think I’m psychotic anyway, I will leave evry meeting and conversation with a pleasant “Peace and Freedom my Friend” 😛

        I have a relativly large labor battle looming in the coming days, because the Liberals that have infested this area, and management, can’t read. I will educate them, and will do so with kindness.

        Thanks JAC! 🙂 You have inspired me.

        G!

        • GMan

          I love it.

          But don’t forget. After that comment, as you are just about out of the room or out of sight, you stop and look back over your shoulder and say:

          “Oh, and don’t forgot. To be free you must live free.”

          Now we’re cookin with gas.

          Don’t forget to leave little notes about liberty and VDLG lieing around with “JAC WAS HERE.” Jefferson quotes would also be great with the JAC was here sign off.

          Can’t wait to get on the good stuff tomorrow. This brainstorming could get real fun.

          Good night G. Time for me to rest.
          JAC

  27. Here’s one that Mr. Flag may want to respond too.

    http://www.thefoxnation.com/rahm-emanuel/2010/01/06/emanuel-us-fed-israel-palestinians

    BF, you seem to up on this matter, what’s your opinion, sir?

    • I don’t know if the US is sick of Israel (yet) based on the comments to that article, however, I think he is saying what needs to be said, but it needs to be said even louder.

      I like this one:
      “..also sick of the Palestinians who never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity..”

      – that is exactly their problem; the Palestinians are so shell-shocked by the situation, they think themselves right back inside a wet paper bag.

      They cheer when the world groans, groans when the world cheers – they are so off-step strategically and diplomatically they are walking with 13 left feet. They can’t win for losing; couldn’t hit the ground with a baseball if they threw the ball straight up in the air.

      It is really too bad there isn’t a rational spokesmen for them.

      And Israel, master of propaganda, take full advantage of this.

      • I think I would agree with you on this. If a good poll was taken, even here, asking “are you sick and tired of hearing about the Isreal/Palestinian mess”, I think that most would say yes. I’ve been hearing about since I can remember, and I’m sick of it myself.

        G!

  28. USWeapon

    Erick Erickson from RedState is all over the TV these days. Hannity last night. Wolf Blitzer today. I read his column too.Is that something you would like to tackle?(In your spare time after 4am)

  29. Judy Sabatini says:

    Here’s a new one for Nevada. Guess it was bound to happen sooner or later.

    Brothel in State

    Wednesday, January 06, 2010

    BEATTY, Nev. — A brothel about 150 miles northwest of Las Vegas has gotten final approval for plans to hire Nevada’s first legal male prostitutes.

    The Nye County Licensing and Liquor Board on Tuesday approved a compliance agreement that will allow the Shady Lady Ranch brothel to make the hires as long as the men wear condoms and undergo weekly health tests.

    Two licensing board members voted against the compliance agreement, expressing worries that not all health concerns have been addressed.

    Board member and Nye County Sheriff Tony DeMeo says he’s worried that female customers can’t and won’t be subjected to the same types of pre-sex examinations undergone by men in most of Nevada’s legal brothels.

    • Buck the Wala says:

      There’s another “Its about time!” for me today. I’m only surprised it took this long.

      One question though, do the women need to submit to weekly health tests? Not that I’m criticizing – I think its immensely important; just wondering if the men are being subjected to the same requirements as the women. Anyone know anything about this?

      Also, DeMeo said he’s worried female customers wouldn’t be subjected to the same types of pre-sex exams undergone by male customers — are these exams required of male customers? If so, why not subject female customers as well?

      • Buck, You are assuming that the male prostitutes are there to cater to females. I am assuming it’s a gay rights issue! 🙂

        G!

        • Buck the Wala says:

          Now its just getting more interesting! haha

          • Wonder how many politicians will be visiting? At least they’ll be caught doing something legal, 😆 That’ll be a change.

          • Barney Frank, after being filmed at gay bothel in Nevada answers his critics “I’m doing my part to stimulate the economy”. Keith Olberman was scheduled to interview God in the next segment, so noone was watching. Highlights can be seen on FOXNews.com.

            • Judy Sabatini says:

              Hello

              I don’t think it’s a gay brothel,and why would you think so. I’m sure there just as many male prostitutes as there are women, but you just don’t hear about it. Ever hear of male gigolos? I’m sure that’s just a male version of prostitute.

              • I would be hardpressed to believe that 99.9% of customers at Nevada brothels are MEN. I would also say that most women that want it, can go to any bar and get it, without the high cost. It’s an equal rights society now, just makes sense, afterall, I’ve been to far too many bars in my day, women don’t have to pay for it.

                G!

              • Judy Sabatini says:

                Okay, okay, but you never know what you’re going to get in a bar, and I know these places here are pretty high class brothels, and I don’t think they let any Tom, Dick or Harry in.

                Yea, I know, as long as they have money.

              • I can’t evision “high class” and “brothel” being used together 🙂

              • Judy Sabatini says:

                Going to bottom.

              • Well, they gotta let at least a few Dicks in Judy.

              • Probably even some Harry ones……

                (Ok, I’ll stop)

              • I doubt Judy goes there! 😆

              • Judy Sabatini says:

                Oh, You’re funny Kathy. LOL

              • ok. G-man and Kathy need a cold shower to settle down now

              • Judy Sabatini says:

                Hey, did you ever answer that guy from face book?

                Just curious.

      • Buck:

        Yes, I do happen to know something about this. Go figure, right?

        The women do get tested also. That was one of the stumbling blocks for getting men approved. They had to come up with a way to test them on the same frequency.

        There was a new article last night about prostitution in Texas and local prosecutors/judges giving girls a chance at rehab. They noted that the area was the hottest source of STD’s in the country.

        Nevada’s legal service industry has the lowest incidence.

        And the men will be available to whom ever, including other men. That has also been a major issue. Even Nevadans balk at the idea of legalized homosexual prostitution. But it is Nevada, so as you say “its about time”.

        By the way, Texas is populated with those who weren’t tough enough to live in Nevada.

        Hope you had a great day.
        JAC

        • Buck The Wala says:

          Should I be surprised you knew something about this, JAC!? haha

          Curiousity got the better of me on this thread. Thanks for the info.

  30. Buck the Wala says:

    Haven’t been paying too much attention to this, but just came across the following that was pretty interesting:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/01/06/dsccs-menendez-democrats_n_413631.html

    There’s been a lot of talk in the MSM about the Dems not seeking reelection. According to this article, more Repubs are retiring than are Dems — 6 GOP Senators, 14 GOP House (compared to 2 and 10 respectively). Menendez attributed this in part to the Tea Party movement.

    Have a g’nite everyone.

    • Buck

      Good post. I had noticed a few weeks back the MSM was focused on the R retirements. I think the latest round of D’s caught them off guard.

      I actually think the tea parties are only part of the story. Notice the years of office with many of those getting out. Many have 30+. That combined with where this country is headed economically has created the old “I’m getting while the gettin is good” feeling.

      The tea parties just helped add a little edge to the game. Might be able to stand against a strong wind but not a hurricane.

      So I look at the tea parties as an “additive” effect, not the sole catlyst. But unlike some on the left who want to poke fun at the public, it DID have an effect and it could be even bigger in the future.

      Only time will reveal the truth.
      JAC

      • Buck The Wala says:

        I’d agree with that — don’t think it can be explained by any one thing, but the convergence of a number of factors.

        Should be an interesting 2010 political season.

  31. Judy Sabatini says:

    G, These gals that work there make good money, they show on the news once in a while the different ones around, and these gals don’t look like just any slouches. I’m sure you have to pay pretty good money to go there.

    A guy that my brother in law knows went to one, can’t remember which one though, and he said it cost him a fortune to go. He didn’t say how much, well not in front of me anyway. He comes from China, and couldn’t get any girlfriends here, so he did the next best thing, I guess. But hey, why can’t you have a high class brothel? Not all prostitutes are street walkers. Them you have to be careful of I’m sure.

  32. Judy Sabatini says:

    Hey, you suppose Tiger Woods could considered a male prostitute considering all the women he had on the side?

    • Probably not. He paid for alot of his trysts, most likely sporting the Thaiwan side of his genes. No self respecting women wants to pay for that.

      • Judy Sabatini says:

        Maybe he’s the first male prostitute to pay his clientele for services.

        • Judy Sabatini says:

          Sorry, couldn’t resist. I wonder what his problem was in the first place. Had a pretty wife, 2 small children, made a fortune, and look what he did to it, destroyed it all because of some side fun. Shame really.

  33. Judy Sabatini says:

    Government does not solve problems; it subsidizes them.
    Ronald Reagan

  34. Judy Sabatini says:

    Governments tend not to solve problems, only to rearrange them.
    Ronald Reagan

  35. Judy Sabatini says:

    I know in my heart that man is good. That what is right will always eventually triumph. And there’s purpose and worth to each and every life.
    Ronald Reagan

  36. Judy Sabatini says:

    If we ever forget that we are One Nation Under God, then we will be a nation gone under.
    Ronald Reagan

    If we love our country, we should also love our countrymen.
    Ronald Reagan

  37. Judy Sabatini says:

    One way to make sure crime doesn’t pay would be to let the government run it.
    Ronald Reagan

  38. Judy Sabatini says:

    The most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help.
    Ronald Reagan

  39. Judy Sabatini says:

    The problem is not that people are taxed too little, the problem is that government spends too much.
    Ronald Reagan

  40. Judy Sabatini says:

    We have the duty to protect the life of an unborn child.
    Ronald Reagan

  41. Judy Sabatini says:

    I liked these quotes from Reagan and wanted to put them up here. I always liked him and thought he was a good president. But, that’s just MHO.

    Good night all and pleasant dreams to you.

    Judy

  42. Todd,

    I’m down here, too squishy above. If I was a scientist, which I’m not, I would put temp gauges along the equator, a few hundred miles apart, and have the temps recorded by computer for 5 years. Then we could have an accurate guide to what the earth is doing. I have learned thats it’s freakin hot in the Middle East, Central and South America, and it freakin cold here in Ohio. Even July ’09 was the coolest July ever recorded.

    The earth may be warming, or it may be cooling. Either way, it’s what the earth does. All I know is that where I live, things are the same as the 60’s and 70’s (when they claimed we were heading for the next ice age).

    I want to visit Wisconsin and Wyoming and Idaho and a few other States out that way, any one would be a dream hunting trip, love the scenery I’ve seen.

    I hate Ohio! 🙂

    G!

    • G-Man,
      You’d have to monitor the temps at all latitudes, and especially in the northern and polar regions. That’s where the temperature changes are most apparent and most damaging.

      More on climate change in a minute…

      • What “damage”?

        Let’s be clear.

        Go outside. Look around. How much life to you see?

        Repeat same observation in July.

        Tell me the difference.

        • Black Flag,
          Climate change is not consistent across the globe. The numbers from England are interesting, but if England were super-imposed on North America, it would be entirely in Canada. It’s kept warm by the ocean and the Gulf Stream. So I wouldn’t equate England to the entire earth.

          In northern latitudes a 2 degree change can cause glaciers and ice caps to melt, perma-frost to melt and release methane gas. All of this speeds up the feed-back loop and destroys habitat that species depend on.

          In the Amazon jungle, a 2 degree change does not have the same effect.

          I find it amazing you can rattle on and on and on on many topics, but then you give your short little quips on like this one and expect anyone to take you serious.

          What does going outside and looking around have to do with climate change? Nothing.

          Comments like that expose (over and over and over) your condescending attitude and show that you have nothing to offer to the discussion.

          • Todd,

            You’d rather believe the MSM than your own eyes?? None of your comments so far have convinced me that people are changing the climate. The CRU emails, in addition to the no-show Al Gore promised hurricanes that caused my homeowners insurance to quadruple overnight, have gone a long way to convince me the whole damn thing is a scam. There are other things also, but those two are the main reasons.

          • Todd

            Climate change is not consistent across the globe. The numbers from England are interesting, but if England were super-imposed on North America, it would be entirely in Canada. It’s kept warm by the ocean and the Gulf Stream.

            And that’s the rub.

            To claim man is the cause – when by your own admission Nature far, far, far out-powers any human action is a claim of zealotry.

            Nature, by its nature, is a negative feed back loop.

            So I wouldn’t equate England to the entire earth.

            Likewise, we shouldn’t equate the Urban Heat Island effect of the USA, temp. ‘adjustments’ and all the data manipulation for the entire Earth, either.

            In northern latitudes a 2 degree change can cause glaciers and ice caps to melt, perma-frost to melt and release methane gas.

            IF there was a 2c change (and there isn’t) it MAY cause glaciers to melt (there are glaciers were it is warm, too) and the release of methane is insignificant to climate (there just isn’t a lot of it compared to the mass of the atmosphere – it is a fraction of a percentage of CO2, which is a fraction of a percentage of the atmosphere) – maybe the ice caps will melt in 200 to 400 years.

            I do not believe I will be worrying about an event 200 to 400 years from now.

            To do so would be equal of Cortez, while marching through Mexico, was worried about the geopolitical effects of USA/Iranian affairs today!!

            All of this speeds up the feed-back loop and destroys habitat that species depend on.

            I do not know where you come up with the belief nature is a positive feedback loop.

            Let me be perfectly clear.

            It cannot be or else we wouldn’t be here right now.

            Positive feedback loops in Nature are very, very rare.

            Why?

            Because they quickly go into wholly unstable environments and dissolve or destroy themselves.

            A nuke explosion is a positive feed back loop. So, we know there are no natural nuke explosions on earth – or else we’d be a star.

            So let’s look at a star. Nuke explosions millions of times a second – but it is not a positive feedback loop. It is a negative feedback loop!! Why? Gravity. Gravity contains the explosions to the core of the star. The massive explosions push matter out, but the gravity of the star pulls it back in – crushing matter back into the nuke reaction.

            Another negative feedback loop – if it was a positive loop, the star wouldn’t be there.

            Everywhere you look its a negative feedback loop.

            Yet, you want me to believe everywhere I look, its a positive loop.

            In the Amazon jungle, a 2 degree change does not have the same effect.

            How much ice melts when the temp increases from -24c to -22c?

            I find it amazing you can rattle on and on and on on many topics, but then you give your short little quips on like this one and expect anyone to take you serious.

            This is a blog.

            The AGW mythology is easy to present on blogs – because it requires no proof. It is a hypothesis married with a lot of irrational muck.

            There are books, with hundreds of pages and tens of thousands of words that explain one small feature that -all by itself- disproves AGW hypothesis.

            There are hundreds of these features that all disprove AGW hypothesis.

            It should have only taken one to have disprove the hypothesis. It appears after hundreds of examples, AGW hypothesis is still around, polluting science with its myth.

            I can go into Navier-Stokes equations with you, to explain – after about 120 pages – why climate modeling has failed to provide any valid prediction of Earth climate 100% of the time.

            Yes, Todd – there has never (in the strictest meaning of the word) a climate model that models the Earth.

            The AGW uses climate models as a proof. 100% of them are wrong.

            Guess what that means to AGW hypothesis?

            What does going outside and looking around have to do with climate change? Nothing.

            I hope you remember that in the summer time.

            Comments like that expose (over and over and over) your condescending attitude and show that you have nothing to offer to the discussion

            There is nothing to discuss.

            AGW hypothesis is wrong.

            AGW claimed an ever increasing temp. It is not increasing, but falling.

            AGW claimed heat signatures in the troposphere. There are none.

            AGW claimed oceans warming. They are cooling.

            AGW claimed increase hurricanes and intensity. The numbers fell to the lowest, and no hurricane higher the 3 hit land.

            AGW claimed surface temp. measurements show man-made warming.
            This is true, since it was a few men who scribbled changes into the numbers of these readings to create warming…etc., etc.

            AGW is dead. The MSM chattering is merely the dying echos of the dying comforting themselves.

            Politicians all over the world are unhitching their wagons from this falling ‘star’. They are doing it in ways so not to totally peeve the eco-nuts (because they still want the votes), so they are claiming support for non-binding agreements, etc. but nothing will come of it.

            The few eco-nuts who have maneuvered themselves into power – like the bizzaro in the EPA – have a very small half-life left in them. They will be punted in a couple of years. Yes, they will do serious damage – but a whole lot less then was feared even 3 or 5 years ago.

            History will judge these last two decades as the lowest bottom of science has suffered since the muting of Galileo. They will shake their heads in disbelief over the pervasive rise of junk science and its politicization.

            Had the temp. not radically diverge from the ‘predictions’ and the ‘computer proof’ and had not the emails and code from CRU been released and that the internet and its blog power not been available – god only knows how badly damaged human society may have been by this.

            Humanity got lucky – just in time.

  43. Subject: Understanding Engineers

    Understanding Engineers – Take One

    Two engineering students crossing the campus when one said, “Where did you

    get such a great bike?” The second engineer replied, “Well, I was walking

    along yesterday minding my own business when a beautiful woman rode up on

    this bike. She threw the bike to the ground, took off all her clothes and

    said, “Take what you want.” The first engineer nodded approvingly, “Good

    choice; the clothes probably wouldn’t have fit.”

    Understanding Engineers – Take Two

    To the optimist, the glass is half full. To the pessimist, the glass is

    half empty. To the engineer, the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

    Understanding Engineers – Take Three

    A pastor, a doctor and an engineer were waiting one morning for a

    particularly slow group of golfers. The engineer fumed, “What’s with these

    guys? We must have been waiting for 15 minutes!”

    The doctor chimed in, “I don’t know, but I’ve never seen such ineptitude!”

    The pastor said, “Hey, here comes the greens keeper. Let’s have a word with

    him.”

    “Hi, George! Say, what’s with that group ahead of us? They’re rather slow,

    aren’t they?”

    The greens keeper replied, “Oh, yes, that’s a group of blind fire-fighters.

    They lost their sight saving our clubhouse from a fire last year, so we

    always let them play for free anytime.”

    The group was silent for a moment. Then pastor said, “That’s so sad. I

    think I will say a special prayer for them tonight.”

    The doctor said, “Good idea. And I’m going to contact my ophthalmologist

    buddy and see if there’s anything he can do for them.”

    The engineer said, “Why can’t these guys play at night?”

    Understanding Engineers – Take Four

    What is the difference between Mechanical Engineers and Civil Engineers?

    Mechanical Engineers build weapons and Civil Engineers build targets.

    Understanding Engineers – Take Five

    The graduate with a Science degree asks, “Why does it work?”

    The graduate with an Engineering degree asks, “How does it work?”

    The graduate with an Accounting degree asks, “How much will it cost?”

    The graduate with an Arts degree asks, “Do you want fries with that?”

    Understanding Engineers – Take Six

    Three engineering students were gathered together discussing the possible

    designers of the human body.

    One said, “It was a mechanical engineer.” Just look at all the joints.”

    Another said, “No, it was an electrical engineer. The nervous system has

    many thousands of electrical connections.”

    The last one said, “Actually it was a civil engineer. Who else would run a

    toxic waste pipeline through a recreational area?”

    Understanding Engineers – Take Seven

    “Normal people believe that if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

    Engineers believe that “if it ain’t broke, it doesn’t have enough features

    yet.”

    Understanding Engineers – Take Eight

    An architect, an artist and an engineer were discussing whether it was

    better to spend time with the wife or a mistress. The architect said

    he enjoyed time with his wife, building a solid foundation for an enduring

    relationship.

    The artist said he enjoyed time with his mistress, because the passion and

    mystery he found there.

    The engineer said, “I like both.”

    “Both?”

    “Yeah. If you have a wife and a mistress, they will each assume you are

    spending time with the other woman, and you can go to the lab

    and get some work done.”

    Understanding Engineers – Take Nine

    An engineer was crossing a road one-day when a frog called out to him and

    said, “If you kiss me, I’ll turn into a beautiful princess.”

    He bent over, picked up the frog and put it in his pocket.

    The frog spoke up again and said, “If you kiss me and turn me back into a

    beautiful princess, I will stay with you for one week.” The

    engineer took the frog out of his pocket, smiled at it and returned it to

    the pocket. The frog then cried out, “If you kiss me and turn me back into

    a princess, I’ll stay with you and do ANYTHING you want.”

    Again the engineer took the frog out, smiled at it and put it back into his

    pocket. Finally, the frog asked, “What is the matter? I’ve told you I’m a

    beautiful princess, and that I’ll stay with you for a week and do anything

    you want. Why won’t you kiss me?”

    The engineer said, “Look, I’m an engineer. I don’t have time for a

    girlfriend, but a talking frog, now that’s cool.”

  44. I’ll bet none of you are being conspired against by shadow ex-government officials who use rogue special forces teams to set-up murder schemes against USA Citizens for their 1st Amendment rights to Blog and communicate over the internet (like right now). I have and this is the result >>> http://amurderconspiracy.wordpress.com/ <<<

    • Damn it Black Flag…………..Close the door and windows would ya!

      Hee hee hee!

    • Josh!

      Do not fear the rogue special forces, based on the evidence of your post, none of us trained them! 🙂

    • Josh…not to worry….being Special Forces for a great deal of my career and being asked to join Blackwater and Merc units (which was always declined)..there are no clandestine Special Force assassination squads out there….we have some covert ones in Afstan but no where else…cept maybe the Phillipines.

      • jjoshuajj21 says:

        Well, YOU know their names, and I know what they have and are doing, to me, and I also have a way to see them coming, so they are BUSTED either way. I use to be in a Special Forces Unit myself, so I have some idea of the activity, whether it’s organized or not.

  45. SUFA CROWD

    Tomorrow is my surgery on my shoulder. Hopefully all will work again like its supposed to.

    But that means I will be out of action for awhile. Don’t know how long cause they don’t know what is needed.

    Anyway, for the next few days I will either be unable to join the discussions, or if I do you should ignore my ramblings…….cause I’ll be on oxycodon. On the other hand, maybe I’ll be more eloquent..LOL.

    I will try to read when I can and will be taking notes. So don’t get to far off track.

    Best wishes to you all, and to all a good night.

    Remember, to be free you must live free.
    JAC

    • Good Luck my Friend, I will be thinking and praying for your healthy return!

      Paece and Freedom Forever!

      G!

    • Good luck JAC!

      I had shoulder surgery many years ago. The recovery is very slow! Enjoy the oxycodon – it will be your only friend for a few days!

    • JAC,

      Best of luck and a speedy recovery my friend. My father had shoulder surgery about 10 years ago and it went splendidly. He was casting again in 2 months. He spends a lot of time fishing so it was a long two months for him. But he did recover fairly quickly and completely. I had shoulder surgery about 5 years before that on my non-throwing arm (high speed projectile wound). I recovered completely as well. Took me a little longer, but it is now plenty strong enough to do all that I ask of it.

      I will keep you in my thoughts.

      USW

      • USW…don’t you hate those high speed punctures? Sure ruins a day at the beach…I have been fortunate, in a manner of speaking….No bullet wounds but had a 120 mm (Vietnam) mortar that made mincemeat outta my knee…but Japanese surgeons and 14 months rehab got me walking again with no limp or pins….Had a B40 rocket propelled grenade in Bosnia stick a couple o pieces of shrapnel in the left arm…but no muscle tears…(it was spent)…but some tiny holes. Had an IED go off in Afstan near Kabul that blew sand and rocks into the scalp….bled like hell but no permanent damage except to the hearing…so I have been lucky as well.

        JAC will do fine. Glad you are ok….have a great day.

        D13

        • It’s amazing what it takes before a man figures out that being around explosions and bullets is bad for your health and body parts.

          Glad to see you may have finally learned a lesson 😉

          • LOL….wish I could say that. I do miss the adrenaline rush. Can do without high speed projectiles tho.

    • Buck The Wala says:

      Best wishes JAC!

    • v. Holland says:

      Heal well and quickly, will keep you in my prayers.

    • Ah, JAC, you wimp – learn to type with one hand. I did…

      Don’t forget to bring a bullet to place between your teeth while they operate on you – I hear it helps to deal with the pain.

      And whiskey, lots of whiskey in the gut – helps too.

  46. Climate Change on a personal level for me – I’m a nut-case cross-country skier – actually I skijor. Does anyone know what that is?

    I live for WINTER. It can’t be COLD enough for me. There is no such thing as too much SNOW!

    I skijored twice this past October – when we got a few inches of snow. Back and forth across my yard. My one Siberian Husky I skijor with was confused – why do we keep turning around?

    Luckily it’s heavily wooded around my house so no one can see…and my wife is too embarrassed to tell anyone!!

    I’m such a nut-case about skijoring, for the past 20 years I’ve created and maintained 10+ miles of trails in the woods. I have a LARGE work snowmobile and have built many grooming drags that I use to groom the trails. I do this so I can skijor from the very first snow fall until every last little patch of snow has melted in the Spring. I don’t have to wait for others to decide there’s enough snow to groom, or have them tell me the trails are closed because there are a few bare spots…

    I’m also very analytical (or maybe the term is “anal”!) and I’ve kept detailed records of all these activities. But it’s not temperature data. There has to be cold and snow to ski, and lots of snow can last into April, or one warm rainy day can end everything in early March.

    The last 18 years can be summed up as the following:

    * The ski season starts about 10 days later and ends about 10 days earlier. Ask my parents – I never used to show up for Thanksgiving because we usually had snow and I was skijoring for those 4 days. I’ve been attending Thanksgiving quite regularly for the last 8-10 years, and usually quite unhappy…

    * Mid season temps are warmer, and we get more warm/rainy spells every year. This NEVER happened in the early and mid 1990’s.

    * We are getting similar amounts to slightly more snow, but it is wetter and heavier.

    * Because of the above two points, I spend much more time grooming between snow falls to stop the trails from getting icy.

    I don’t have detailed temperature data, but there are fewer nights where I’m out grooming or skijoring in 10-20 degree below zero temperatures. Those type of nights tend to stick in my mind…

    In the early 1990’s, for 3-4 years in a row, we had 5-7 days in a row when the high temperature did not get above -20 degrees. We haven’t had those kind of cold-snaps in the past 10 years.

    All of this even though I now live 80 miles farther north than I did in the 1990’s. I’d move even farther north, but the mention of that tends to bring up the subject of divorce – my wife does not approve.

    • More data.

    • Only the insane love the cold 😉

      I am not insane.

      • I can’t imagine how boring it would be to live somewhere where the temperature doesn’t change from season to season. We have temperature changes of over 130 degrees every 6 months.

        Until you live in a climate like that, and truly appreciate it, and see how it changes over a short span of years, and how tenuous the winter climate is, you won’t understand the impact that a few degrees increase in temperature can have on the environment.

        • “….a few degrees….”

          Yep, it sure would.

          zero point two degrees 0.20c

          Nope, not a bit.

        • I kinda liked it when the weather report was:

          “Remember yesterday. Today same”

        • Todd, I live in just such a place. The beach parties, snorkeling, sailing, biking everywhere and never needing a winter wardrobe is fine by me. I lived in Germany for seven years and England for two. You can keep that cold weather. Yep, I have a very boring outdoor life…. 😉

        • On the contrary, Todd, I have lived in all types of climates and ones that fluctuated between stifling hot monsoon season to the coldest winters I have ever felt in my life. I few degrees may have a dramatic impact on the short term (trees die, grass browns, etc). However, I don’t think a degree or two on the overall median will make too large a difference, especially given that history shows us it has been hotter in the last century than anything they are “predicting”.

      • I am not (yet) insane….

        Snowing today; it is beautiful out there and still relatively mild (my computer shows 19 degrees). It’s early enough in the season to still appreciate this postcard out my window. Come March, I won’t be so tolerant and it’s why we northerners schedule spring break trips!!!!

    • I can vouch for Jan 19 1994 the night my dad died, it was -25. Three days later it was still -22

      • Feb 2, 1996 – about 30 miles from my cabin (where I now live), the coldest temperature ever in Wisconsin was records – 55 degree below zero. The wood stove was cooking that nice – nice and warm in the cabin!

        • Southeast Michigan here. You can keep your records. I’ll take the cabin though

        • ahhhh…Todd….come on to Texas….today…the chill factor will be zero…19 degrees 45 mph north wind….60 hours of it…just enough to kill the fleas, ticks, chiggers, scorpions, send the snakes deeper into hibernation, water bugs, mosquitos, no see ums, black flies…etc. Schools are closed today for the most part because of black ice…and we Texans know two speeds on ice…stop and full blast. However, I like my 110 degree days. I do not like winter even though I have been in the Black Forest of Germany, Iceland, Alaska, 45 miles above the arctic circle line, etc… (Have you ever been to Amarillo, Texas in the winter)..anyway….

          I prefer the snorkeling, diving, sunshine, constant temperatures and wondering whether or not I will be water skiing or scuba diving the next day instead of chopping wood for the stove and hunting up the “snuggie”.

          Anyway…have a wonderful day. Part of my family lives in the mountains of New Mexico and are cross country ski nuts and snow mobilers…

          Have a nice cup o hot choc and kick back.

          D13

          • “no see ums”

            I only thought those critters lived in south Alabama.

            Tonight is the night. Will it be the trill of victory or the agony of defeat, only time will tell?

            • You know, I’m glad you brought up the game tonight because I have a rant on this…..

              It is too late for this game! Who cares anymore about college football (OK- other than you two and your states). It is January 7th and it is College Basketball season!

              I liked it so much better when bowl games were held between Christmas and News Years and the National Championship was January 2nd.

              And one more thing….why is it at the Rose Bowl? The Rose Bowl is for…the Rose Bowl!!!! You know that game held on New Year’s Day between the PAC-10 and the Big 10. The National Championship game should not be there – seems anti-climatic and this is supposed to be the biggy.

              Well, I feel better now. Will check in tonight to see which one of you will be wearing the opposing tee-shirt! Good luck to you both!

    • Actually Todd, if you would look at the data from the whole state of WI, your results would be different,even in the last 3 years. The mid- to southern part of the state has been bombarded with snow the last 3 winters, while the northern part has had minimal snow. Perhaps you should be looking to move south rather than north.

      A good friend does the Birkie each year; she gets in ample training down here – early and often – then the actual race itself – 5 hours north, is often cut short because of lack of snow. I don’t know much about the science behind AGW, but even I can see flaws in your personal methods for determining its presence.

  47. Todd,

    Have you seen this?

    http://www.americanthinker.com/2010/01/climategate_and_the_migrating.html

    Climategate and the Migrating Arctic Tree Line
    By Dexter Wright
    One of the more enlightening e-mails to spill out of the Climategate scandal is a report on the progress of Siberian fossilized tree ring work. The report, dated October 9, 1998, focuses on some two thousand samples of fossilized trees thirty-three nautical miles north of the present-day Arctic Circle. The report attempts to correlate the migration, north and south, of the tree line with annual tree ring dating so that an actual year can be assigned to a certain location of the Arctic Circle. The report correctly states that there has been migration of the polar tree line over the past several thousand years, but the investigators attribute this migration singularly to the cold tolerances of tree species.

    Although the botanists are correct that cold tolerance does affect the northern limit of trees, they incorrectly attribute the migration solely to variation in climatic temperatures. This is only part of the answer. The other part lies in the in the geographic fact that creates the Arctic Circle in the first place.

    The location of the Arctic Circle is a function of the tilt of the Earth’s axis, which is approximately twenty-three and a half degrees (23.5o) from the orbital plain of our planet. This is why the Arctic Circle is at sixty-six and half degrees (66.5o) north latitude, exactly 23.5o south of the North Pole, which is at ninety degrees (90o) north latitude. But this angle of axis tilt has not always been 23.5o.

    The Earth’s axis has been calculated to “wobble” on a 40,000-year cycle. This “wobble” is known as “precession,” and this phenomenon is well-documented by astronomical observations throughout history. As the axis wobbles, it points toward different parts of the heavens. There is even an entry in Christopher Columbus’s log where he admonishes his officers that the star Polaris (the North Star) is not located due north at the center of the celestial sphere but is off by one degree. That is not the fact today, but five hundred years ago, Polaris was off by one degree. Calculations have revealed that the tilt of the Earth’s axis has been as much as twenty-four degrees (24o) and little as twenty-two and a half degrees (22.5o). These variations in the tilt of the axis over time have been linked to the onset and end of ice ages simply because the size on the arctic would expand and contract correspondingly to the angel of tilt resulting in a migration of the Arctic Circle tree line.

    The now-discredited Dr. Jones of East Anglia University would like us to believe that the migration of the tree line along the Arctic Circle eliminates what is known as the Medieval Optimum, a warm period one thousand years ago when the Vikings were growing grapes in Greenland. Dr. Jones fails to take into account the “wobble” of the Earth’s axis, which just three thousand years ago was pointing toward the star Kochab in the constellation Ursa Minor (the Little Dipper) so that it was fixed at the center of the celestial sphere. The measurements of this “wobble” over the last hundred years reveal that in 1900, the tilt was 23.45229 degrees; in 1977, the tilt was 23.44229 degrees; and in the year 2000, the tilt was 23.43928 degrees.

    The e-mail report does conclude that “[t]here are no evidences of moving polar timberline to the north during last century.” By establishing that there has been no northern migration of the Arctic Circle tree line, this might suggest that global temperatures have remained stable over the last one hundred years. However, keep in mind that this observation is consistent with the fact that the tilt of the Earth’s axis has not shifted appreciably over that last century, either. The bigger question is this: Why was this small piece of the puzzle omitted from the reports generated by the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that Dr. Jones helped compile? Is it possible that it is because this fact completely contradicts the “prevailing scientific view” that Dr. Jones would have us believe?

    These types of “errors” and “omissions” seem to be indicative of the entire “Global Warming” investigation conducted through, or in collaboration with, Dr. Jones. Perhaps the best conclusion to come to is that the entire body of work compiled by the IPCC is tainted and therefore unreliable for any policymaker.

    • Cyndi…I heard a report read on TV yesterday about records that have been kept since 1890 or so where the arctic glaciers melted away and everybody back then was worried and then 10 years later they were all back to the same place. The world is a fragile place but, what the hey….there is nothing that I can do about the axis shift…even though retired Colonels sometimes think they are God…I found out real quickly that I am not….I have been trying to make Pelosi, Obama et al. disappear for some time….Damn, I missed that class….I will keep trying though. Luv ya….

      D13

      • Hey There D13! Let me know when you work out that disappearing trick. I can think of a few RINOS that need to go too!

        🙂

  48. Stuck in Ohio says:

    Good morning everyone. I enjoy reading everyone’s comments and veiwpoints on a daily basis, but rarely post any comments. Today however, I thought you might enjoy reading the e-mail response I got from our Senator Brown regarding my opposition to his support of the many liberal spending bills he has voted yes on-in particular the health care reform issue.

    Here is his response:

    “Thank you for sharing your views regarding health reform.

    When it comes to health care, the cost of inaction is simply too high. More than 390 Ohioans lose their health insurance every day. Small businesses and the self-employed often pay double or triple what large businesses pay for coverage. By 2007, 62 percent of bankruptcies were due to medical costs. And forty-five thousand Americans die each year because they are uninsured and can’t get the care they need. American families and businesses deserve better.

    On November 7, 2009, the House of Representatives passed legislation, the Affordable Health Care for America Act (H.R. 3962), by a vote of 220 to 215. A consolidated Senate health reform bill, the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” (H.R. 3590) was passed on December 24, 2009, by a vote of 60 to 39. Though similar in many respects, these bills are not identical. Congress is currently working to take the best parts of both bills and produce a final piece of legislation.

    The bill passed by the Senate late last year, with my support, would lower costs for middle class families with insurance, while providing help to 31 million Americans who lack it. This legislation would also invest in small businesses by providing an immediate tax credit to help employers afford health benefits for their workers, and would place an immediate ban on pre-existing condition exclusions for children. Despite the great deal of misinformation circulating about health reform, seniors on Medicare would see their prescription drug costs cut in half, not increased, and for the first time, would have access to free annual check-ups and preventive screenings. The bill, which has been endorsed by AARP, would also extend Medicare’s solvency by nearly a decade.

    Overall, passage of both the House and Senate legislation means that Americans are one step closer to having affordable insurance options if they change or lose their jobs. It means we are one step closer to ending insurance industry practices that cut off access to medically-necessary care or discriminate against women or individuals with pre-existing medical conditions. And it means we are one step closer to ensuring that insurance companies will have to spend premium dollars on medical care – rather than on lavish sales trips and exorbitant CEO salaries – or else give rebates to consumers.

    As Congress moves forward on health reform, I will certainly work to address your concerns. If you wish to learn more about my work on health reform as well as the most Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) that Ohioans have posed to my office, please visit my website at:

    http://brown.senate.gov/issues_and_agenda/stories/share/?issue_id=f565635b-e37a-45d3-b15f-edf6b930bd1a.

    Thank you again for getting in touch with me on this important issue.”

    Sincerely,

    Sherrod Brown
    United States Senator

    I tried to put his response in italics, but I am new to this and did not know how to change the font. Anyway, I can’t wait until this guy comes up for re-election so I can give him alll the support he deserves-a NO vote!

    • Stuck,

      This is a prime example of why I quit wasting my time on the our elected so-called representatives. I once received a letter that pretty much told me that I was ignorant and uninformed. If that was so, why is it that I bothered to take the time to write? If I was ignornat and uninformed, isn’t it more likely that would have been watch somme stupid reality TV show instead of writing my Rep????

      • Stuck in Ohio says:

        Cyndi,

        I fully understand your frustration-we all do. But, the only way we can have any hope of influencing the way they vote is to continue to flood them with e-mails, faxes, etc. The only thing they fear is losing their position in government. Unless they are will to fall on their sword to please the party and then we can vote them out of office and attempt to repeal as much as we can.

        It sucks, but short of armed rebellion it’s the way the system works (or is supposed to work anyway)

        • I agree with your description of how the system is SUPPOSED to work. Unfortunately, that’s not how the system works now. I’m concerned that things will come to economic collapse and then possibly armed rebellion. I’m quite sure the government is much more prepared for both than most citizens. In fact, most citizens are willfully ignorant of what’s going on. They REFUSE to consider that things are not as they have been in the past. They believe that life will go on as it always has. Until most citizens realize that America is self destructing, the politicians can afford to ignore people like us. I’ve had to ‘tune’ out a bit just to keep my sanity. I’ve concluded that America is headed forthe dust bin of history, with most citizens quite happy to go there.

          • Stuck in Ohio says:

            Cyndi,

            1. You are correct in that they system does not appear to be working the way it is supposed to. But we can’t give up just yet.
            2. A lot of commentors on this site share your concerns about economic collapse, not sure about the armed rebellion part though.
            3. A lot of people are ignorant of what is going on, but they think that it is for their benefit, they do not realize what they are giving up in return or what the long term consequences will be.
            4. It was pointed out long ago that our system will self destruct when the electorate figures out that they can take wealth and goods from other by vote.

            We can save our system,but we are going to have to work hard to do so. The next few months are going to be critical though.

            • Hey Stuck,

              Can you please explain HOW a small minority of people who have little or no influence can save 300 million people from self destruction, when a majority of said millions are determined to continue on the current trajectory? This situation reminds me of my former marriage. Suffice to say no one can stop someone who is determined to self destruct. My position is one of handing the rope to the person who INSISTS on hanging themself, then get the hell out of the way.

              I’ll be logging off now, but look forward to your explaination. I’ve got a 12 hour day out of the shop ahead of me, then, I have to go out to the community theater rehearsal to help with costuming for the upcoming show. I don’t know if I’ll be on-line tonight. I’m exhuasted just thinking about it 🙂

              • Stuck in Ohio says:

                Didn’t say I could explain it, can only hope we can make an impact

              • v. Holland says:

                Hi Cyndi,

                I have to ask you something-when I read your post I heard-let them hang themselves nothing I do will stop them-but I sense(maybe incorrectly) the idea that you think it will fall and we will change it back after the dreamers see the truth-my fear in that vision is that it won’t fall-it will just become fully socialistic-and in reality where are you gonna go to get out of the way. So what avenue do we have other than to try?

              • Stuck in Ohio says:

                Holland

                That is exactly my point-we have to try no matter what the final result.

                I think Cyndi is underestimating the number of people out there that are beginnning to finally fiugure out what is happening. If we can all convince just one person at a time to re-evaluate what has happened to our government, then we have a chance to remedy things.

              • Hi V,

                I think it WILL fall. I doubt any us will live long enough to enjoy the fruits of rebuilding. Its taken a long time for us to get to this point and it’ll take a long time to come back from it.

                It’s going to take more than convincing clueless voters of what’s going on. You’re going to have to convince them to become very actively involved. Writing letters to congresspersons who don’t give a damn about the voters isn’t going to do much. How many will go out amd attend rallies on a regular basis? How many will put up with the scorn and hostility? As long as people flip a switch and have a light turn on, turn the tap and get clean water, open the fridge and have food, they will not make the effort required. As long as they have the luxury of ignoring what’s going on, they will not be committed. If you have resources to spare trying to save people who are not interested in saving themselves, then by all mean, use them. Personally, I don’t. Compensating for the stupidity/foolishness of others only defers the inevitable at your expense.

                I think we are already living in a socialist state. The real problems will occur if we find ourselves in a dictatorship ala Venezuela, which by the way, I think could happen. If we DO find ourselves living in a dictatorship, immigration to another country or submission will be your likely choices. So I say let it fall as that is the best way to get people to think about what has happened. O can’t blame Bush and have the masses fall for it, for too much longer. He promised to provide for them. When he fails to come thru then they’ll listen.

              • We could see the rebuilding in our life time IF the process of reckoning is left without interference.

                If political forces attempt to ‘fix’ it, it will take much longer.

                Like a human life, you can pollute the body for a long time – and the sickness hits suddenly, and the healing can happen quickly compared to the time it took to get unhealthy – unless the person continues to pollute the body during healing.

              • Agreed, but I think that’s a mighty big IF…..

    • Stuck, I am getting similar responses. I think Berry and Lincoln do not expect re-election, and wonder what they will get for a reward?
      Dept. of Ag? Homeland security? There has got to be a payoff somewhere.

      Dear Life of Illusion,

      Thank you for contacting me regarding H.R. 3962, the Affordable Health Care for America Act. I appreciate you taking the time to contact me about this legislation.

      Throughout the debate over health insurance reform, there has been broad agreement that the cost of health care is currently unsustainable for individuals, families, small businesses, and taxpayers. Ensuring that American citizens have access to quality, affordable health care is critical to the long-term strength of our economy.

      As the debate has progressed, I have repeatedly stressed my principles for providing health care and prescription drugs to Americans through the private sector in a way that they can afford. I believe that health care reform must preserve the freedom of individuals to choose their own health plans and providers. I believe that reform should maintain competition among private plans within the marketplace, and that health care choices must continue to be made by physicians and their patients using the best available information. Above all, we must work in a bipartisan and a fiscally responsible way to make sure Americans have access to affordable, high-quality health care.

      I supported H.R. 3962 in an effort to move the process forward, not necessarily to endorse its entire content. This bill is not perfect; however, it represents significant progress in achieving more affordable and better quality health care. This legislation represents compromise among a wide variety of voices from vastly different regions of the country. It prohibits insurance companies from denying coverage to Americans with pre-existing conditions, prohibits federal funding for abortion, and bars illegal immigrants from receiving federal benefits
      under the bill. In addition, I fought for and was successful in including several priorities for health care reform in this bill, including provisions to provide cheaper prescription drugs for seniors by requiring pharmaceutical companies to negotiate prices with Medicare and filling in the Part D “doughnut hole.” The legislation also preserves access for patients to receive durable medical equipment such as diabetic testing supplies from their local community pharmacist.

      For too long insurance companies have found ways to cheat Americans out of the lifesaving care and procedures they desperately need simply because they were more interested in boosting their quarterly profits rather than providing care. One of the most important accomplishments of the House bill is that it puts an end to these practices and ensures that doctors and patients, not insurance companies, make health care decisions. There is no doubt that reform is needed to control rising health care costs, increase quality and value, and to improve access to coverage and care and this legislation is the next step toward that goal.

      Again, thank you for contacting me. If I may ever be of assistance in the future, please do not hesitate to call upon me or my staff. You may also visit my web site, http://www.marionberry.com, to learn about the other issues I am working on for the First Congressional District of Arkansas.

      Sincerely,

      MARION BERRY

      Member of Congress

      (Gee, thanks Marion. But that did not really answer my questions about a “blue dog”, fiscal conservative voting for a bill that is going to raise health cost for the vast majority of Americans. But I did not really expect an honest answer)

    • Hi SIO!

      I’m in Ohio too! I have received several similar responses by Sherrod Brown as well, with the same BS. Interestingly, Ohio new Health reform law is now in effect: here’s the link http://www.wksu.org/news/story/24653

      Lots of snow coming tonight, be carefull!

      G!

  49. Todd,

    Sorry I bailed on you yesterday. Made a reply below,

    How many times has it happened?

    How many retractions did the media then make?

    How many stories were there on tho N. pole not melting, as reported?

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/04/26/ice-at-the-north-pole-in-1958-not-so-thick/
    Reply

    *
    Todd said
    January 6, 2010 at 9:44 pm

    LOI,
    That’s a cool story about the subs at the north pole. The story itself explains how they were able to surface:

    “the Skate found open water both in the summer and following winter. We surfaced near the North Pole in the winter through thin ice less than 2 feet thick. The ice moves from Alaska to Iceland and the wind and tides causes open water as the ice breaks up. The Ice at the polar ice cap is an average of 6-8 feet thick, but with the wind and tides the ice will crack and open into large polynyas (areas of open water), these areas will refreeze over with thin ice. We had sonar equipment that would find these open or thin areas to come up through, thus limiting any damage to the submarine. The ice would also close in and cover these areas crushing together making large ice ridges both above and below the water. We came up through a very large opening in 1958 that was 1/2 mile long and 200 yards wide. The wind came up and closed the opening within 2 hours. On both trips we were able to find open water. We were not able to surface through ice thicker than 3 feet.”

    I don’t see how this says anything about global warming?

    I’d bet the same sub would find more areas where it could surface today. Have you found any current stories are subs at the north pole?

    The predictions about the arctic being ice free range from 2013 to 2030. There have been no retractions because it’s not 2013 yet.

    Todd,

    The point here is how does a non-scientist like me determine if global warming is real. I could simply believe the media, who would never lie (which diet really works? and can I eat eggs/steak or not?)
    Or I could believe Flag, but he’s a computer, not sure I trust him/it.

    I find history a good yardstick to use measuring their claims. There are historical accounts of open water at the N. Pole during the summer going back decades at least. So media reporting of predictions of an Ice free pole by 05, 06, 07 were DELIBERATELY misleading. Not one of the reports mentioned the pole having open water years before, except recently, tying it into the AGW pitch.

    How many summers has the media run multiple stories about the N. pole soon to be ice free due to global warming? This never happened, and as Flag showed, they have made record ice mass gains the past two? years. Did the media ever retract their story? I have been waiting to hear the pole will remain frozen
    for at least another ten years, Santa doesn’t have to relocate.

    Al Gore and the media is another interesting indicator. The UK BANNED him movie being shown in classrooms because of several gross misrepresentations.
    The “hockey stick” he shows, had the Medieval Warm Period removed. The ice core data showed that warm period as well as their being over 400 years of historic accounts of this event. Another big Gore statement, ocean levels will rise 20′. The UN panel he was on predicted 39″ in 100 years. Is the difference between three feet and twenty an exaggeration, or does that qualify as a lie? The data also shows CO2 follows temperature rise, not leads it, so concluding AGW is caused by dramatic CO2 rises is a deliberate reversing of facts.

    All of this I have researched and found on my own. No influence from Beck, Flag or others. The information is out there, where even an Arkansan redneck can find it, but only by looking with an open mind. I started taking a skeptical view of news reports in 1999-2001, W2K, summer of the sharks, child abductions, all hyped stories made up for their drama, not reality. Kinda funny, the media is anti-2nd amendment, and I carry a gun because of them. Their misleading scare stories about child abduction resulted in my concealed carry. Child abductions were not rising, as they indicated.

    Now the question is on you. Why do you believe in AGW? Where is your source of information? Is it the same “news reporters” that don’t mention how much greenhouse gas mankind produces, compared to nature. It’s 0.28 percent. Nature produces 99.72 percent of greenhouse gases. How come the media doesn’t report that? And why do they not mention the solar minimum? Again, I not a scientist, but I do get that our source of heat is the sun. If you are talking about global warming, how can you if ignore the sun’s increase/decrease in output?

    • Environment Writer: Ignore the Record Cold; Global Warming Is Happening

      By P.J. Gladnick
      January 6, 2010 – 11:54 ET
      Brrrrrr!

      Ignore the record shattering freezing weather surrounding you. Global Warming is happening. Please believe me. Oh, pretty please!

      That is pretty much the theme of an article by Michael McCarthy, the U.K. Independent environment writer. With this cold weather it must be tough to plead the case for global warming but McCarthy takes a desperate stab at it:

      You might think the current weather conditions are almost Siberian – and you’d be right. Britain’s most prolonged spell of freezing weather since 1981 is being caused by a huge mass of intensely cold air over north-east Russia, with easterly winds sweeping its glacial temperatures across northern Europe to the UK.

      And just as in the 20th century’s coldest ever winter in Britain, of 1962-63 – although not on such a severe scale – the cold is being held in place over the British Isles by what is known as a “blocking anti-cyclone”, a static area of high pressure over Greenland which is preventing the usual warmer, damper westerly winds from reaching us across the Atlantic.

      http://newsbusters.org/blogs/p-j-gladnick/2010/01/06/environment-writer-ignore-record-cold-global-warming-happening

      Nearly the entire eastern half of the United States is enduring bitterly cold temperatures not experienced since 1985. Even Florida, which has been hovering around freezing levels overnight recently, is also feeling the almost-nationwide chill.

      With the entire eastern half of the country in the throes of this arctic snap, this is shaping up to be the coldest winter in many people’s memories.

    • Pretzel 73 says:

      LOI,

      Could you tell me where you got your information that says that man is resposible for only .28 percent of greenhouse gases.
      Thank you.

      Also, I don’t think it is possible for man to change the climate. I have been having an ongoing debate with my brother in law for years on this subject. Always looking for more ammo.

      • Pretzel,

        Sure thing. I was trying to explain this to my kids where they could understand. Working with pennies, would have to start with:
        $100 in pennies
        $98 would be all the other gases in atmosphere
        $1.97 would be the naturally occuring green house gases
        $0.03 would be man kinds contribution (rounded)

        http://www.ncpa.org/pdfs/GlobalWarmingPrimer.pdf

        Pages 5-8. Page 14 is also very interesting, as it is confirmed by history and science. I have confirmed this with other sources, but don’t have them as handy to post.

      • Pretzel,

        Search for any key words out of this paragraph:

        The late New Zealand professor Augie Auer explained that three-quarters of the planet is ocean, and 95 percent of the greenhouse effect is governed by water vapour.

        “Of that remaining 5 percent, only about 3.6 percent is governed by CO2 and when you break it down even further, studies have shown that the anthropogenic (man-made) contribution to CO2 versus the natural is about 3.2 percent.

        “So if you multiply the total contribution 3.6 by the man-made portion of it, 3.2, you find out that the anthropogenic contribution of CO2 to the the global greenhouse effect is 0.115 percent … that’s like .12 cents in $100. It’s minuscule … it’s nothing.

        “So if that’s the driving science, why do we need to be all concerned about CO2 and why do we need Kyoto and why do we need all the consequences from it?”

        In other words, anthroprogenic produced CO2 in the atmosphere is hardly measurable when compared to say water vapor, and reducing it by the tiniest percentages by taking Draconian measures wouldn’t have any effect on global warming, if indeed there is such a thing, but it would sure make life a lot less tolerable for most of us.

    • No influence from Beck, Flag or others.

      Hey! I’m moving up in the world! I’m in the same league as Beck!

      Now, I just have to figure out how to get paid the same as he!

      • Send me a bill, I will pay you just as much as I pay Beck.

        Honestly, I doubt you could do his job, you get right to the point where he belabors the point. The man can talk!

        • BF gets right to the point? Are you kidding me? His answers are either essays or short stories and sometimes reach the novel level.

          Then you add in the time that you have to go research the information he gives out and…..my brain starts hurting!

          Beck has never caused my brain to hurt!

    • January 07, 2010
      Letter from 141 scientists to UN Sec Gen Ban states skeptics case

      John McLaughlin

      The website globalwarminghoax.com posts a letter sent to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon signed by 141 scientists stating the case for why anthropogenic (manmade) global warming (AGW) is far from settled science.

      We the undersigned, being qualified in climate-related scientific disciplines, challenge the UNFCCC and supporters of the United Nations Climate Change Conference to produce convincing OBSERVATIONAL EVIDENCE for their claims of dangerous human-caused global warming and other changes in climate. Projections of possible future scenarios from unproven computer models of climate are not acceptable substitutes for real world data obtained through unbiased and rigorous scientific investigation.

      The letter lists ten specific challenges to any AGW supporters within the scientific community for which they must demonstrate popular assertions. The letter signers conclude:

      It is not the responsibility of ‘climate realist’ scientists to prove that dangerous human-caused climate change is not happening. Rather, it is those who propose that it is, and promote the allocation of massive investments to solve the supposed ‘problem’, who have the obligation to convincingly demonstrate that recent climate change is not of mostly natural origin and, if we do nothing, catastrophic change will ensue. To date, this they have utterly failed to do so.

      Anyone (including representatives of the Environmental Protection Agency) who can still say AGW science is settled, given the names and reputations of the 141 signers of this letter, cannot be dealing with objective reality.

      http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2010/01/letter_from_141_scientists_to.html

    • Solar flux could only be lower if it was zero

  50. http://newsbusters.org/blogs/lachlan-markay/2010/01/07/gibbs-refuses-address-obamas-broken-c-span-promises

    QUESTION: During the campaign the President on numerous occasions said words to the effect of — quoting one — “all of this will be done on C-SPAN in front of the public.” Do you agree that the President is breaking an explicit campaign promise?

    GIBBS: Chip, we covered this yesterday and I would refer you to yesterday’s transcript.

    QUESTION: But today is today and —

    GIBBS: And the answer that I would give today is similar to the one —

    QUESTION: But there was an intervening meeting in which it’s been reported that the President pressed the leaders in Congress to take the fast-track approach, to skip the conference committee. Did he do that?

    GIBBS: The President wants to get a bill to his desk as quickly as possible.

    QUESTION: In spite of the fact that he promised to do this on C-SPAN?

    GIBBS: I would refer you to what we talked about in this room yesterday.

    QUESTION: But the President in this meeting yesterday —

    GIBBS: And I addressed that —

    QUESTION: — pressed for something that’s in direct violation of a promise he made during the campaign.

    GIBBS: And I addressed that yesterday…

    QUESTION: Well, does the President think it would be more helpful if this process were more transparent, that the American people could see —

    GIBBS: Mike, how many stories do you think NBC has done on this?

    QUESTION: Speaking for myself —

    GIBBS: Just a guess.

    QUESTION: That’s not the issue. The issue is whether he broke an explicit campaign promise.

  51. Networks Downplay $42 Million in ‘Outrageous’ Bonuses, ‘Unlimited’ Bailout of Fannie, Freddie

    By Julia A. Seymour
    January 7, 2010 – 08:58 ET
    http://newsbusters.org/blogs/julia-seymour/2010/01/07/networks-downplay-42-million-outrageous-bonuses-unlimited-bailout-fan

    The network news media cheered when Obama called for restrictions on CEO pay or bonuses that, according to reporters, exemplify the Wall Street “greed” that toppled the American economy.

    But when $42 million in cash compensation packages were announced on Christmas Eve for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac executives, the networks couldn’t muster any anger toward the highly connected groups. Although Fannie and Freddie were two government-sponsored enterprises whose excessive risk taking contributed significantly to the housing crisis, the networks barely reported the story at all.

    Salaries and bonuses at American International Group (AIG), Goldman Sachs, Citigroup and others have been criticized in dozens of network reports in 2009.
    Story Continues Below Ad ↓

    As Katie Couric noted on the CBS “Evening News” Oct. 21, “Taxpayers all over the country were outraged when they heard that companies they helped bail out turned around and gave their executives huge bonuses.”

    A few days earlier on Oct. 15, CBS’s “Early Show” interviewed economist Peter Morici who said “it’s absolutely unfair for Wall Street to be paying itself record bonuses. The taxpayers made these bonuses possible by loaning Wall Street money at near zero rates. This is all quite unseemly and inappropriate.”

    AIG in particular was the object of media scrutiny beginning in March 2009 when it announced plans to pay roughly $165 million in bonuses. The media’s sense of outrage flared up against the bailed out company again in late 2009.

    In just the past three months, AIG was mentioned in 21 critical reports about Wall Street bonuses. But The Wall Street Journal highlighted a major difference between AIG and Fannie/Freddie on Jan. 3 saying “at least AIG is trying to make money. Fan and Fred are now designed to lose money.”

    “Outrage.” That’s what the networks found when private companies that accepted bailouts compensated their executives. It’s also what taxpayers would feel if the networks were actually reporting the latest developments with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which have been protected for years by high profile Democrats Reps. Chris Dodd, Conn., and Barney Frank, Mass.

    But since the Christmas Eve announcement of millions in salaries and bonuses and the Obama administration’s pledge of “unlimited financial assistance” to the mortgage giants,

    ABC and CBS offered a total of three brief mentions totaling 175 words about Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. NBC hasn’t mentioned them at all.

    Not a single one of those reports used the word “bonus” or mentioned the decision to extend the credit line of both government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs), which already required more than $100 billion from taxpayers.

    Unlike the broadcast networks, CNBC’s Rick Santelli was indignant about the stealth extension of funds to Fannie and Freddie. On Jan. 4, Santelli told viewers his New Year’s resolution to “mention Freddie and Fannie and every day maybe ask what’s wrong with S&P, Moody’s and Fitch. Because for us to re-nationalize off balance sheets these trillions of dollars of lecherous accounting gimmicks without having it affect the U.S. credit rating in my opinion is reprehensible.”

    Talking about a Wall Street Journal editorial, Santelli remarked that Fannie and Freddie aren’t SIV’s (Special Investment Vehicles), but rather “Special Implosion Vehicles.”

    But Santelli’s frustration was an exception to near silence by the networks.

  52. A few days ago, there was a mention of the Interpol executive order signed by BO recently. Here is an interesting take from our neighbors to the north:

    Interpol – From the Inside

    http://www.canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/18651

  53. v. Holland says:

    How Fights Get Started..

    My wife sat down on the couch next to me as I was flipping channels.

    She asked, ‘What’s on the TV?’

    I said, ‘Dust.’

    And then the fight started…

    ******************************************

    My wife and I were watching “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire” while we were in bed. I turned to her and said, “Do you want to have sex?”

    “No,” she answered.

    I then said, “Is that your final answer?”

    She didn’t even look at me this time, simply saying, “Yes.”

    So I said, “Then I’d like to phone a friend.”

    And then the fight started….

    ******************************************

    Saturday morning I got up early, quietly dressed, made my lunch, and slipped quietly into the garage. I hooked up the boat up to the van, and proceeded to back out into a torrential downpour. The wind was blowing 50 mph, so I pulled back into the garage, turned on the radio, and discovered that the weather would be bad all day.

    I went back into the house, quietly undressed, and slipped back into bed. I cuddled up to my wife’s back, now with a different anticipation, and whispered, “The weather out there is terrible.”

    My loving wife of 5 years replied, “Can you believe my stupid husband is out fishing in that?”

    And that’s how the fight started…

    ******************************************

    I rear-ended a car this morning. So, there we were alongside the road and slowly the other driver got out of his car. You know how sometimes you just get soooo stressed and little things just seem funny? Yeah, well I couldn’t believe it…. He was a DWARF!!! He stormed over to my car, looked up at me, and shouted, “I AM NOT HAPPY!!!”

    So, I looked down at him and said, “Well, then which one are you?”

    And then the fight started…

    *****************************************

    My wife was hinting about what she wanted for our upcoming anniversary.

    She said, ‘I want something shiny that goes from 0 to 150 in about 3 seconds.’

    I bought her a bathroom scale.

    And then the fight started…

    ******************************************

    After retiring, I went to the Social Security office to apply for Social Security. The woman behind the counter asked me for my driver’s License to verify my age. I looked in my pockets and realized I had left my wallet at home. I told the woman that I was very sorry, but I would have to go home and come back later.

    The woman said, ‘Unbutton your shirt’. So I opened my shirt revealing my curly silver hair. She said, ‘That silver hair on your chest is proof enough for me’ and she processed my Social Security application.

    When I got home, I excitedly told my wife about my experience at the Social Security office.

    She said, ‘You should have dropped your pants. You might have gotten disability, too.’

    And then the fight started…

    ******************************************

    My wife and I were sitting at a table at my school reunion, and I kept staring at a drunken lady swigging her drink as she sat alone at a nearby table.

    My wife asked, ‘Do you know her?’

    ‘Yes,’ I sighed, ‘She’s my old girlfriend. I understand she took to drinking right after we split up those many years ago, and I hear she hasn’t been sober since.’

    ‘My God!’ says my wife, ‘who would think a person could go on celebrating that long?’

    And then the fight started…

    ******************************************

    I took my wife to a restaurant. The waiter, for some reason took my order first. “I’ll have the steak, medium rare, please.”

    He said, “Aren’t you worried about the mad cow?””

    Nah, she can order for herself.”

    And then the fight started…

    ******************************************

    A woman was standing nude, looking in the bedroom mirror. She was not happy with what she saw and said to her husband, “I feel horrible; I look old, fat and ugly. I really need you to pay me a compliment.’

    The husband replied, ‘Your eyesight’s damn near perfect.’

    And then the fight started…..

  54. Reading “Superfreakonomics”

    They had an interesting comment in the Chapter “Terrorists should buy life insurance”

    They took the stats of a typical terrorist. They found that they do not come (necessarily) from poor families or under educated, but from middle class families with good education.

    Criminals commit crimes for their own personal gain.

    Terrorist commit crimes for political gain. So, it makes sense that the middle class – who are more political then the poor – populate terrorist classes.

    But what they found was the ‘telling’ and dominate trait about the class of ‘terrorist’ was …. they are voters. Non-voters do not use terrorism as a tactic.

    Terrorist is a person who is really making their vote count.

    Now, I have another reason why I don’t vote….

  55. Judy Sabatini says:

    Jack Cafferty rips Obama on openess.

    • Wow, from CNN no less. It’s about damn time.

    • What’s that old expression, a day late and a dollar short? Nice of them to care now that the deed has been done. I guess this shows their even handedness and lack of bias.

      See if they jump on the bandwagon early (fat chance) for cap n’ trade and amnesty.

  56. Judy Sabatini says:

    January 7, 2010 07:45 AM EST by John Stossel
    The Obamas’ Sacrifice

    Obama G20 SummitWe are lucky to have President and Mrs. Obama in the White House. They have sacrificed wealth and its comforts… for us.

    I know that because they keep telling us. John Dietrich has been keeping track.

    The president has repeatedly stressed the need for us to tighten our belts. He has informed us, “We can’t drive our SUVs and eat as much as we want and keep our homes on 72 degrees at all times …” During the campaign, his wife told us that we have to compromise and sacrifice for one another in order to get things done. Shortly after the election, the president said that “(e)verybody’s going to have to give. Everybody’s going to have to have some skin in the game.”

    The Obamas have given up a lot.

    According to Michelle Obama, one of the Obamas’ first major decisions after graduating from college was, “Do I go to Wall Street and make money, or do I work for the people?” As we all know Barack, decided to “work for the people.” During the campaign, Michelle informed six women in the playroom of the Zanesville Ohio Day Nursery, “We left corporate America.” She advised these working-class women to do the same: “Don’t go into corporate America. You know, become teachers. Work for the community. Be social workers.”

    Please. The Obamas are part of the Washington elite, who have always indulged their champagne tastes while advising the rest of us to make do with less. The American people don’t need any lectures from the Obamas — or anyone else living large on the taxpayer dime — about sacrifice.

    What’s good about America are its volunteers, and caregivers, and foster parents, and military families… who don’t belabor others with tales of their “sacrifice.”

    Read more: http://stossel.blogs.foxbusiness.com/2010/01/07/the-obamas%E2%80%99-sacrifice/#ixzz0bwx9OQCw

  57. Judy Sabatini says:

    Should Someone Be Fired for Failed Christmas Attack?

    By You Decide

    President Obama is scheduled to make public Thursday his recommendations for new steps to thwart future terror attacks like the one on Christmas Day against a Detroit-bound jetliner. Obama also might announce the firing of an official for the breakdown in intelligence related to the failed attack. If so, who should go?

    Thank you for voting!
    Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano 63% (26,182 votes)
    CIA Director Leon Panetta 1% (545 votes)
    National Counter Terrorism Director Michael Leiter 13% (5,242 votes)
    Deputy National Security Adviser John Brennan 1% (332 votes)
    National Intelligence Director Dennis Blair 1% (332 votes)
    Acting Director of Transportation Security Administration Gale Rossides 1% (453 votes)
    Secretary of State Hillary Clinton 2% (915 votes)
    No one. Obama is most responsible and should say so 14% (5,968 votes)
    No one 2% (910 votes)
    Undecided 2% (652 votes)
    Total Votes: 41,531
    View Comments

    • Janet Napolitano should be fired for the dumbest statement in modern times, “the system worked”.

    • v. Holland says:

      I always wonder why people who are undecided, decide to vote.

    • The only way to get the buracracy to take this seriously is if some heads roll and a stern warning is given that more will roll if communication problems are not solved. I was very disappointed with Bush that he did not do this on several occasions. If Obama does not take this seriously, then it will be business as ususal and nothing will improve. The same goes for Congress but O has already lost that battle. He should have vetoed the stimulous bill and the first budget bill and sent them back for removal of the pork. But then pork is just loose change so I guess this is the change we voted for.

    • They forgot to add one more group to vote on, Like the entire Congress and Executive Branch! 😆

    • Where’s All of the Above?

      😉

  58. Judy Sabatini says:

    Schwarzenegger wants more federal money for California
    Peter Henderson and Jim Christie
    SACRAMENTO, California
    Wed Jan 6, 2010 5:25pm EST

    SACRAMENTO, California (Reuters) – California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on Wednesday vowed to pry more dollars from the federal government, which he said took more than it gave, but left details on how to close a $19.9 billion state budget gap until later this week.

    In a state of the state speech, the governor said creating jobs was the top priority for his last year in office and proposed spending $500 million in worker training funded by part of the budget which is in surplus.

    He also laid out ambitious reforms for the final year of his term — almost certain to include months of budget battle.

    Schwarzenegger on Friday will present his plan to close a budget hole that reflects the problems of the boom and bust California economy. The U.S. economic engine faces deteriorating finances as it tries to balance its budget and preserve social safety nets in tough times.

    The outgoing Republican governor, stopped by term limits from seeking reelection in November, called for tax reform, protection for higher education spending — and more money from the federal government.

    “We no longer can ignore what is owed to us, or what we are forced to spend on federal mandates,” Schwarzenegger told the combined state Assembly and Senate, which must support any budget plan by a two-thirds majority — a bar that has forced months of acrimonious debate in previous years.

    Democratic State Controller John Chiang said lawmakers have little time to lose if California’s government is to avoid the same kind of cash shortages that last year forced it to hand out IOUs to pay its bills.

    “They’re certainly a year older and I hope a year wiser,” Chiang told Reuters.

    State Treasurer Bill Lockyer, also a Democrat, described Schwarzenegger’s speech as “essentially the same” as other set pieces by the governor — middle of the road and long on optimism, such as the promise to safeguard education.

    “It’s a little hard to square with the fiscal realities,” he said, adding that others had tried for years to claw back money from the federal government and the governor might rely too much on such help in the budget plan he releases this week.

    Meanwhile, the state needs to sell bonds in coming months to avoid shutting down infrastructure projects, Lockyer said.

    Schwarzenegger put the budget hole at $19.9 billion over 18 months, about a billion less than a recent report from the state’s budget watchdog. He blamed the federal government for possible increases because of new healthcare costs.

    A new national healthcare policy would be a ‘disaster’ for California, he said.

    Schwarzenegger called for overhauls including changing the state’s tax and pension systems and allowing for private prisons, red flags to powerful unions and their allies.

    Schwarzenegger’s jobs plan is part of a five-point package that also includes tax credits for first-time home buyers and lower sales taxes for green technology, and measures to limit lawsuits against businesses and make it harder for environmental regulations to block big construction projects.

    The unemployment rate in California, which ranks as the world’s eighth-largest economy, currently hovers above 12 percent, significantly above the national average.

    BATTLE LINES BEFORE BUDGET

    Republicans and Democrats began establishing battle lines immediately after the speech.

    Republican lawmakers cheered Schwarzenegger’s call for pension reform and private prisons to cut the state costs. “We don’t have a choice … The budgetary problems are so severe,” said Republican Assemblyman Roger Niello.

    “Taxes are not option this time,” Niello added, noting that he agrees with Schwarzenegger that California’s tax system must be changed so it has a broader base for revenues from personal income taxes, the state’s main source of revenue.

    Alberto Torrico, the Assembly’s Democrat majority leader, said overhauling California pensions with a two benefit tiers for existing employees and retirees and future ones as Schwarzenegger proposes was not viable.

    “A two-tier system where you have haves and have-nots is not going to work,” said Torrico, who also was bracing for a fight over the spending plan.

    “It’s going to be an ugly budget,” he said.

    • The biggest problem in CA is that the unions own the legislature. So nothing will change. The state will go bankrupt before the legislature does the job right. The unions recently won a court battle declaring the furlow system (3 day/month) illegal according to their contracts. The state now owes back wages for days not worked. Now the unions are worried about layoffs. Big surprise. The furlows were done to avoid layoffs. Schwartzennegger has not done many of things he originally promised. There is much duplication and waste in the state buracracy. Initially he took on the unions but lost big time. He caved and since then he has been a RINO. While he could have done better, the problem is not in the govenor’s office but in the legislature. The smart money is leaving the state.

      • Judy Sabatini says:

        Hey T-Ray

        That’s why we’ve trying unsuccessfully to get my sister to dump her house, retire from her job, and come stay with us until she can get on her feet.

        She can get her retirement from working for the state for 18 years, plus her retirement from the OPD, and get her social security, but she absolutely refuses. It’s like trying to get blood from a turnip.

  59. GOOH newsletter

    We made tremendous progress last month, with brilliant coverage on Fox & Friends, ABC, WGN, Fox, and ShelfLife. We have now had almost 700,000 visitors to our Web site and have just under 50,000 members! We’ve come an incredibly long way. The tipping point is near. Two national shows are lined up to present GOOOH this month and half a dozen others have shown interest, While there are no guarantees, it is clear the media has taken an interest in our plan. Patriots all across the country are learning about us every day through your efforts, and with the Holidays now in the rear view mirror, we are ready to shift to the next gear.

    We have formed leadership teams in each state and would like you to join us, to help with the work needed to reach our membership goal. Most of the tasks require but a few minutes and you can do the work at your convenience. For example, an assignment may be to contact the following members of the media. If you are willing, please contact each and tell them about GOOOH:
    1) Jeff Bolton
    2) Lou Dobbs

    3) Neal Boortz

    4) Mike Huckabee

    5) Larry King

    To get involved, please contact your state leader.

    The time to retake control of our government is upon us. While there are a few groups still intent on fixing their party, most are looking for an alternative. Polls show that the red party has fallen into fourth place behind “Tea Partiers,” Independents and Democrats. The “Tea Party” movement has ratings more favorable than either the Republicans or Democrats according to the latest Wall Street Journal / NBC News poll.

    Are you aware that only 44% of Americans favor health care “reform” according to a December ABC / Washington Post poll? And the number is declining! The politicians are insisting on the purchase of what they have called a “$2.5 trillion starter house” that only has the support of 33% of likely voters – according to research done by the Progressive Change Campaign Committee and Democracy for America (as reported by The Huffington Post).

    Whether or not you favor health care reform, I want to know if anyone in America truly believes we can afford this new house. With supporters of BOTH PARTIES so strongly opposed to the current plan, why is it about to pass? Could it be because the politicians have lost all touch with the people? Could it be because they need another 5,000 earmarks to reward those funding their campaigns next fall? Could it be because their party is telling them they will vote as told or the party will support someone else in the upcoming primaries? These politicians no longer represent you or me, they represent the special interest groups who have written this 2,000 page bill which they haven’t even bothered to read. They represent their party, who is dictating how they will vote – how else could every member of one party be for the bill and every member of the other against? You can bet both parties are threatening to do what the Democrats did to Liebermann if they don’t vote as told? Politicians represent themselves and their own political careers. So rigged is the system, incumbents know they have a 95% chance or being re-elected, they simply do not care what we think. It is time to put an end to this re-election guarantee.

    What I really want to know is how will our children and theirs afford this massive bill? How can we in good conscience allow such a debt to amass under the watch of our generation? If we are going to spend money, then let’s raise taxes and pay the bill ourselves. Or, let’s cut spending elsewhere. I don’t know if you agree with me, but I find it deplorable to pass this burden of debt to my children.

    If we want to reform Health Care let’s address the real problems. Why do you think there is not one mention of tort reform in the bill? Could it be because law firms are the biggest financial supporters of BOTH PARTIES? Couldn’t we prevent rescission (cancelling coverage after you are diagnosed) by simply passing a law saying the behavior is no longer allowed? Rather than cutting benefits for seniors to save money, couldn’t we cut benefits provided to those in the country illegally? We can all debate the best way to improve health care, but one thing is certain: passing a 2,000 page bill that taxpayers do not support, Congress has not read, and our nation cannot afford is reckless and irresponsible. It is time to send true citizen representatives to Washington and get our nation back on track!

    On a seperate note, many have been asking about shirts and hats, which are now available in the GOOOH Store and at Café Press.

    One hundred years from now our history books will tell the story of the GOOOH Revolution. I hope you will help us write that story.

    In liberty,
    Tim C

  60. Judy Sabatini says:

    Tomorrow is Elvis’s 75th birthday, thought I’d put up this song.

  61. Buck The Wala says:

    Interesting article in the Sunday Times Magazine preview on mortgage defaults if anyone is interested:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/10/magazine/10FOB-wwln-t.html?hp

    • Judy Sabatini says:

      Hi Buck

      As long as we can pay our house payment, we will. We’ve done the loan modification, and it has helped us save some money. We went form a $1700 a month house payment to $1147, so yea, if we can save $500 a month, why not.

      The only problem we have, is we’re upside down now, we owe more than it’s worth. Went from $350,000, and the value of it now is only worth $168,000, and couldn’t sell it if we wanted to. We don’t by the way.

      Now, my sister is another story. She got her hours cut at work, which means a cut in pay, ( She works for the Oakland Police Department as a secretary for one of the captain’s there ). They take off $800 every paycheck she gets, plus she has to take mandatory days off without pay. Right after Christmas, she had to take a week off without pay, which means she gets less now on her next paycheck. She said she can’t afford to make her payment every month, so she has to skip one or two sometimes, in order to make her other payments, on things like utilities or maybe her car insurance, or perhaps to buy some food for herself. She said she’s about 3 or 4 months behind in her house payment.

      We told her to dump it, come up here to Reno, and live with us until she can get on her feet. She refuses to do so. She thinks by working until she’s 66, she’ll get more out of her retirement and social security. Our mom lives here with us because of her Dementia, and my sister couldn’t leave her alone all day, but with her cuts, she still had a hard time making ends meet, and she and my mom have a joint checking account, and she makes the house payment out of what my mom gets, plus she has to kick in part of that, and she’s still finding it difficult.

      She is in the process of looking for a place of her own right now, but cannot find anything she can afford, so she says she is stuck there. She sends us money for mom when she can, but it’s hard for her to do on a month to month basis.

      There is much more to this, but it would take a while to explain why.

      The housing market has improved a little here, but there are those people who are still facing foreclosures, because they lost their jobs, or can’t find work. Even I can’t find one just yet, but still looking. I lost mine back in October, and my husband is only working on a part time basis right now, and we’re not bringing in anything we did back 3 months ago. But, that’s another story in it’s self.

      Didn’t mean to go so long here, but if you or anybody else has any questions that I might be able to answer, please feel free to ask.

      • The only problem we have, is we’re upside down now, we owe more than it’s worth. Went from $350,000, and the value of it now is only worth $168,000, and couldn’t sell it if we wanted to. We don’t by the way.

        It’s not a problem.

        Your house is worth exactly what it was a year ago – its worth a house.

        You have to live somewhere. Its either in that house or another house.

        If it has gone down that much, make sure your land taxes also reflect this. Insist on a revaluation.

        • Judy Sabatini says:

          Hi Flag

          Right now, we’re paying $440 every 2 to 3 months on property taxes, but next year, they are suppose to go down, because of the new assessments on house values here. Not sure by how much though. But it has to be a lot less than what we’re paying now.

          No, we don’t plan on going anywhere at the moment, we’ve been here for 20 years come this March. I think we’re pretty much going to stay, but it would be nice to downsize. This house is too big for just the 3 of us right now. Maybe sometime in the future if it picks up again.

    • Buck,

      Thanks, that is interesting. I have posted before a theory I thought of, that the mega cities in the US are not sustainable, long term. That it takes subsidies from outside, that are not cost effective. And it appears most housing “bubbles” are in such areas.

      http://bigpicture.typepad.com/comments/2007/07/brief-history-m.html

      • Buck The Wala says:

        Interesting maps attached to that article LOI.

        Not so sure about your sustainability theory on cities though. But then again, being from NYC, I’m biased on that front.

  62. Todd!

    You got hit pretty hard on the AGW issue today, so I will just provide a link concerning one of my comment yesterday about the Laws of Physics and how the AWG theory is in contradiction.

    http://www.climategate.com/german-physicists-trash-global-warming-theory%22

    Hope your day is well, we get about 8 inches of fresh snow coming tonight and tomorrow.

    Peace and Live Free!

    G!

  63. Judy Sabatini says:

    Subject: Fwd: A retired Constitutional lawyer has read the entire
    > >> proposed
    > > healthcare bill. See comments below… Very Scary
    > >>
    > >> No matter the party affiliation, we should all be concerned about the
    > >> healthcare bill. I fear for our children and grandchildren (I don’t
    > >> expect to have that many more years, but I don’t expect to have the best
    > >> of medical care in the ones I do have left) and hope they can remain
    > >> healthy throughout their lives. Yes, there are issues with our health
    > >> care, but everything isn’t broken. I would like to see what’s not working
    > >> effectively fixed and leave the rest alone. Starting with tort reform,
    > >> for example. So, let’s vote all the bums out! They seem to have forgotten
    > >> they represent “we the people” and can do what they please, no matter
    > >> what we want. jjw
    > >>
    > >>
    > >>
    > >>
    > >> A retired Constitutional lawyer has read the entire proposed healthcare
    > >> bill. Read his conclusions and pass this on as you wish. This is
    > >> stunning!
    > >> Please take the time to read this and forward it out as you see fit.
    > >> Thanks
    > >> The Truth About the Health Care Bills – Michael Connelly, Ret.
    > >> Constitutional Attorney
    > >>
    > >> Well, I have done it! I have read the entire text of proposed House Bill
    > >> 3200: The Affordable Health Care Choices Act of 2009. I studied it with
    > >> particular emphasis from my area of expertise, constitutional law. I was
    > >> frankly concerned that parts of the proposed law that were being
    > >> discussed might be unconstitutional. What I found was far worse than what
    > >> I had heard or expected.
    > >>
    > >> To begin with, much of what has been said about the law and its
    > >> implications is in fact true, despite what the Democrats and the media
    > >> are saying. The law does provide for rationing of health care,
    > >> particularly where senior citizens and other classes of citizens are
    > >> involved, free health care for illegal immigrants, free abortion
    > >> services, and probably forced participation in abortions by members of
    > >> the medical profession.
    > >>
    > >> The Bill will also eventually force private insurance companies out of
    > >> business, and put everyone into a government run system. All decisions
    > >> about personal health care will ultimately be made by federal
    > >> bureaucrats, and most of them will not be health care professionals.
    > >> Hospital admissions, payments to physicians, and allocations of necessary
    > >> medical devices will be strictly controlled by the government.
    > >>
    > >> However, as scary as all of that is, it just scratches the surface. In
    > >> fact, I have concluded that this legislation really has no intention of
    > >> providing affordable health care choices. Instead it is a convenient
    > >> cover for the most massive transfer of power to the Executive Branch of
    > >> government that has ever occurred, or even been contemplated If this law
    > >> or a similar one is adopted, major portions of the Constitution of the
    > >> United States will effectively have been destroyed.
    > >>
    > >> The first thing to go will be the masterfully crafted balance of power
    > >> between the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial branches of the U.S.
    > >> Government. The Congress will be transferring to the Obama Administration
    > >> authority in a number of different areas over the lives of the American
    > >> people, and the businesses they own.
    > >>
    > >> The irony is that the Congress doesn’t have any authority to legislate in
    > >> most of those areas to begin with! I defy anyone to read the text of the
    > >> U.S. Constitution and find any authority granted to the members of
    > >> Congress to regulate health care.
    > >>
    > >> This legislation also provides for access, by the appointees of the Obama
    > >> administration, of all of your personal healthcare direct violation of
    > >> the specific provisions of the 4th Amendment to the Constitution
    > >> information, your personal financial information, and the information of
    > >> your employer, physician, and hospital. All of this is a protecting
    > >> against unreasonable searches and seizures. You can also forget about the
    > >> right to privacy. That will have been legislated into oblivion regardless
    > >> of what the 3rd and 4th Amendments may provide.
    > >>
    > >> If you decide not to have healthcare insurance, or if you have private
    > >> insurance that is not deemed acceptable to the Health Choices
    > >> Administrator appointed by Obama, there will be a tax imposed on you. It
    > >> is called a tax instead of a fine because of the intent to avoid
    > >> application of the due process clause of the 5th Amendment. However, that
    > >> doesn’t work because since there is nothing in the law that allows you to
    > >> contest or appeal the imposition of the tax, it is definitely depriving
    > >> someone of property without the due process of law.
    > >>
    > >> So, there are three of those pesky amendments that the far left hate so
    > >> much, out the original ten in the Bill of Rights, that are effectively
    > >> nullified by this law It doesn’t stop there though.
    > >>
    > >> The 9th Amendment that provides: The enumeration in the Constitution, of
    > >> certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others
    > >> retained by the people;
    > >>
    > >> The 10th Amendment states: The powers not delegated to the United States
    > >> by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are preserved to
    > >> the States respectively, or to the people. Under the provisions of this
    > >> piece of Congressional handiwork neither the people nor the states are
    > >> going to have any rights or powers at all in many areas that once were
    > >> theirs to control.
    > >>
    > >> I could write many more pages about this legislation, but I think you get
    > >> the idea. This is not about health care; it is about seizing power and
    > >> limiting rights. Article 6 of the Constitution requires the members of
    > >> both houses of Congress to “be bound by oath or affirmation to support
    > >> the Constitution.” If I was a member of Congress I would not be able to
    > >> vote for this legislation or anything like it, without feeling I was
    > >> violating that sacred oath or affirmation. If I voted for it anyway, I
    > >> would hope the American people would hold me accountable.
    > >>
    > >> For those who might doubt the nature of this threat, I suggest they
    > >> consult the source, the US Constitution, and Bill of Rights. There you
    > >> can see exactly what we are about to have taken from us.
    > >>
    > >> Michael Connelly
    > >> Retired attorney,
    > >> Constitutional Law Instructor
    > >> Carrollton , Texas
    > >>
    > >>
    > >>
    > >> AFTER HAVING READ THIS, PLEASE FORWARD….
    > >>
    > >> If you don’t care about our constitution, or your rights under it, just
    > >> do nothing.
    > >>
    > >> WE MUST HOLD CONGRESS ACCOUNTABLE BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE.
    > >>
    > >> An alarming view of what this health care bill is attempting to change!
    > >>
    > >> —
    > >> JIm Skinner
    > >> USAF/BN 65-85
    > >> Web Site http://bombnav.us
    >
    >

    • Hi Judy!

      I took this one further and checked for authenticity, which it is: http://www.snopes.com/politics/soapbox/connelly.asp

      Now the question to all at SUFA, what legal actions can be taken? Personnally, since they are shoving it down our throats, I wouldn’t mind returning the favor and shoving it right back up their ass! 👿

      Peace and Live Free my Freind

      G!

      • Judy Sabatini says:

        Hi G

        I think only a lawyer can answer that. Not unless someone here has a legal back ground, and then get some answers there, because I sure don’t have any.

        Never thought that this country can get so screwed as it has been getting. I feel so sorry for the next generation and all generations after that. They’re going to be just as screwed as we are. I see nothing but a sea of robots doing exactly what they’re told. Pity!

        • Buck The Wala says:

          To sue you would need to prove standing; that you had some harm specific to you and not just as a taxpayer/citizen. I believe you would be able to bring a case if:

          1) The bill passes and goes into effect,
          2) You do not have health insurance and refuse to purchase insurance,
          3) The government fines you for not having insurance under the bill.

          That should be sufficient to get your foot in the courtroom door!

    • Buck The Wala says:

      I’m going to pass comment on the gist of his article on the constitutionality of the bill — as discussed in the past, many scholars have found the bill to be constitutional while others have found it to be unconstitutional.

      But what I do want to comment on is Connelly’s first paragraph:

      “The law does provide for rationing of health care, particularly where senior citizens and other classes of citizens are involved, free health care for illegal immigrants, free abortion services, and probably forced participation in abortions by members of the medical profession.”

      I’ve read up on this bill. I’ll be the first to admit I haven’t read every page of the actual bill, but I’ve read plenty of summaries and op-eds and news articles. This is the first I’m hearing that the bill provides for free health care for illegal immigrants and free abortion services. Everything I have read indicates otherwise. Could someone point to the actual text of the bill that says this?

      • Hey Buck!

        I wrote a point paper at work for my coworkers on HR 3200. It’s at work, and I’m at home, and that was a while ago, and can’t remember the section numbers of the bill. Maybe we can hash this out at a later date.

        I think there are many things that could get the foot in the door, but this disaster should be challenged, even with an order that keeps it from taking effect, until the Constitutional issues are dealt with.

        I do agree that the mandate is not within the power of Government.

        Peace and Live Free my Freind

        G!

        • Buck The Wala says:

          Hey G,

          If you see this and remember, definitely post those section numbers if you get a chance. I’d like to take a closer look at the issues.

          Thanks a bunch!

          –Buck

  64. Judy Sabatini says:

    The Darwin’s are out!!!!

    Yes, it’s that magical time of year again when the Darwin Awards are bestowed, honoring the least evolved among us.

    Here is the glorious winner:

    1. When his 38 caliber revolver failed to fire at his intended victim during a hold-up in Provo , Utah would-be robber Jason Ellison did something that can only inspire wonder. He peered down the barrel and tried the trigger again. This time it worked.
    And now, the honorable mentions:

    2. The chef at a hotel in Switzerland lost a finger in a meat cutting machine and after a little shopping around, submitted a claim to his insurance company. The company expecting negligence sent out one of its men to have a look for himself. He tried the machine and he also lost a finger. The chef’s claim was approved.

    3. A man who shoveled snow for an hour to clear a space for his car during a blizzard in Chicago returned with his vehicle to find a woman had taken the space. Understandably, he shot her.

    4. After stopping for drinks at an illegal bar, a Zimbabwean bus driver found that the 20 mental patients he was supposed to be transporting from Harare to Bulawayo had escaped… Not wanting to admit his incompetence, the driver went to a nearby bus stop and offered everyone waiting there a free ride. He then delivered the passengers to the mental hospital, telling the staff that the patients were very excitable and prone to bizarre fantasies.. The deception wasn’t discovered for 3 days.

    5.. A teenager was in the hospital recovering from serious head wounds received from an oncoming train. When asked how he received the injuries, the lad told police that he was simply trying to see how close he could get his head to a moving train before he was hit.

    6. A man walked into a Louisiana Circle-K, put a $20 bill on the counter, and asked for change. When the clerk opened the cash drawer, the man pulled a gun and asked for all the cash in the register, which the clerk promptly provided. The man took the cash from the clerk and fled, leaving the $20 bill on the counter. The total amount of cash he got from the drawer… $15. [If someone points a gun at you and gives you money, is a crime committed?]

    7. Seems an Arkansas guy wanted some beer pretty badly.. He decided that he’d just throw a cinder block through a liquor store window, grab some booze, and run. So he lifted the cinder block and heaved it over his head at the window. The cinder block bounced back and hit the would-be thief on the head, knocking him unconscious. The liquor store window was made of Plexiglas. The whole event was caught on videotape.

    8.. As a female shopper exited a South Carolina convenience store, a man grabbed her purse and ran. The clerk called 911 immediately, and the woman was able to give them a detailed description of the snatcher. Within minutes, the police apprehended the snatcher. They put him in the car and drove back to the store. The thief was then taken out of the car and told to stand there for a positive ID. To which he replied, “Yes, officer, that’s her. That’s the lady I stole the purse from.”

    9.. The Ann Arbor News crime column reported that a man walked into a Burger King in Ypsilanti , Michigan at 5 A.M., flashed a gun, and demanded cash. The clerk turned him down because he said he couldn’t open the cash register without a food order. When the man ordered onion rings, the clerk said they weren’t available for breakfast. The man, frustrated, walked away. [*A 5-STAR STUPIDITY AWARD WINNER]

    10. When a man attempted to siphon gasoline from a motor home parked on an Atlanta street, he got much more than he bargained for. Police arrived at the scene to find a very sick man curled up next to a motor home near spilled sewage. A police spokesman said that the man admitted to trying to steal gasoline, but he plugged his siphon hose into the motor home’s sewage tank by mistake. The owner of the vehicle declined to press charges saying that it was the best laugh he’d ever had.

    In the interest of bettering mankind, please share these with friends and family….unless of course one of these individuals by chance is a distant relative or long lost friend. In that case, be glad they are distant and hope they remain lost.

    *** Remember….
    They walk among us, they voted for Obama, and they breed!!!***

    • How management will attempt to rip off it’s employees, or they are just stupid, you decide. 2008, If employee take health rist assessment (HRA), employee saves $5 each pay on the premium of health insurance. Those that don’t take assessment pay $5 more. (a questionaire and routine bloodwork at no cost to employee).

      Fair enough. 2010, Letter comes out, after, employess are charged an extra $10, claiming that the GINA Act, which took effect on November 21, 2009, made it illegal for them to do this. I read the Act, they are almost correct. HRA testing was done in October ’09, benefits were signed before November 21, 2009.

      Two flaws, one, laws are not retroactive, and would not apply to any actions or agreements prior to the date law took effect, two, they should only take $5 from those who tested, and give back $5 to those who didn’t. Theft or stupid, what say ya’ll?

    • ??? was the Arkansan in #7 barefoot?

  65. Judy Sabatini says:
  66. Judy Sabatini says:

    I still want to know how they’re going to check pregnant women on this.

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Janet Napolitano, the U.S. secretary for homeland security, said on Thursday she will travel to Spain this month to meet with her international counterparts to seek tougher international aviation security measures.

    She also told reporters during a briefing that the United States is scheduled to deploy 300 additional advanced imaging scanners at U.S. airports in 2010, and may deploy more.

  67. Judy Sabatini says:

    WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama signaled to House Democratic leaders Wednesday that they’ll have to drop their opposition to taxing high-end health insurance plans to pay for health coverage for millions of uninsured Americans.

    In a meeting at the White House, Obama expressed his preference for the insurance tax contained in the Senate’s health overhaul bill, but largely opposed by House Democrats and organized labor, Democratic aides said. The aides spoke on condition of anonymity because the meeting was private.

    House Democrats want to raise income taxes on high-income individuals instead and are reluctant to abandon that approach, while recognizing that they will have to bend on that and other issues so that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., can maintain his fragile 60-vote majority support for the bill.

    Pelosi and four committee chairmen met with the president Wednesday as they scrambled to resolve differences between sweeping bills passed by the House and Senate. The aim is to finalize legislation revamping the nation’s health care system in time for Obama’s State of the Union address early last month.

    Despite the dispute over the payment approach, Pelosi, D-Calif., emerged from the meeting expressing optimism.

    “We’ve had a very intense couple of days,” Pelosi said. “After our leadership meeting this morning, our staff engaged with the Senate and the administration staff to review the legislation, suggest legislative language. I think we’re very close to reconciliation.”

    Congressional staff members stayed at the White House into the evening to continue work and a conference call of the full House Democratic caucus was scheduled for Thursday.

    • I wonder if Pelosi will be the cause of the return of burning witches at the stake? 😆

      • Judy Sabatini says:

        Be the cause, she is the cause, right next to her is Reid, but he’s not a witch, just an a$$hole.

        God, I hope he gets voted out this year. But, the sad thing is G, is that his son Rory Reid is running for governor here, and we’ll still be in trouble if another Reid gets into office. He must not win.

        • If one loses, they both will (Reid). Just shoveled 3 inches of snow out of the way, that’s in 4 1/2 hours. Going to snow till sometime tomorrow. I like these kinds of winter storms, I don’t mind being stuck indoors so much.

          Tell everyone hello for me!

          G!

          • Judy Sabatini says:

            I think the people here are fed up with Reids, I know I am.

            Good Lord, you guys are getting bombarded with snow. All he have is crappy clouds and air, no wind, no breeze, no nothing.

            Wish I could tell every one hi for ya G, but they’re all gone. Well, Christopher will be leaving for Utah tomorrow for a WLC course and he’ll be gone for 2 weeks. Matthew is in New York until the 12th, and Jim gets home Saturday, from Hawaii, so that just leaves me and mom for now.

            • Judy Sabatini says:

              Meant to say we not he. sorry

            • The snow isn’t bad just yet. We should have about 14 inches on the ground, which already had a fluffy 6, by Saturday. Not much really, last year from Jan 9 to Jan 17, we had 56 inches. We’ll survive, it will melt (in March, maybe) 😆

              I hope the bitter cold gets out of here, that’s what hurts.

              G!

              • Judy Sabatini says:

                Sorry to say this G, but better you than us. All we’re getting for the next several days is more clouds, they just said that on the weather here. And by next Tuesday and Wednesday, more rain. That I can deal with.

                But, I AM SO SICK OF BEING COLD, I just can’t get warm no matter what I do, until I go to bed, then I warm up.

                They said in the paper the other day, that we didn’t get enough snow to help the drought though. Yea, right, drought my ass. But yet, they just keep on building. If, we’re in a drought, you’d think they wouldn’t keep building like they do. Reno has really built up, but nothing compared to Vegas.

              • Don’t be sorry, it’s normal here. It’s coming down an inch an hour or better right now, and I like it. These are peaceful times to me, crime comes to a halt, nobody on the roads, just a time around here that is nice, let it snow! 🙂

                G!

              • Judy Sabatini says:

                going to bottom

  68. Judy Sabatini says:

    Yea, the snow is pretty to look at, and it is oh so quiet when it does snow, but here, it doesn’t matter, you still have the idiots out there driving like they’re on a race track, flip you off if you don’t go fast enough, then when you see them, they’re stuck somewhere or rammed them selves into a fence or something.

    The last really big snow I think we had was back in 05 for what they said. Heck, we still have snow in the front yard, but it’s turning into ice now. And the drive way is slowly melting little by little. I think that rain we had last night helped, plus the temps haven’t been in the freezing mark. But I’ll be damn, every single morning the person who delivers the paper makes it a challenge for me when I go get the paper. I think they purposely drop it off at the end of the driveway, knowing there’s still ice there. JERKS.

    • I don’t mind the snow at all. Still just coming down an piling up, but thats OK with me. The woodburner is going good, I don’t have to go anywhere, so let it snow. I only shoveled earlier to give me a running start at the road, which won’t be plowed. Once I get going, I’m good.

      Last year we had 16 inches by noon, and I got called into work. Had my drive clear, got going and made it. I only have a two wheel drive truck (GMC) but have never been kept from anywhere in town. Did have to leave at the bottom of the mountain up Dads last year cuz of ice, but that’s OK. Let it snow, let it snow!!! 😆

      G!

      • How nice! The low pressure is moving past, which will change the wind direction, out of the north and then NW. Lake effect totals of 3-5 inches by midnight Friday, on top of what we have! YEE HAW!

        Dad’s going to get hammered, they get twice as much as I do. No road trip this weekend.

        I love all this Global Warming stuff, if it gets just alittle warmer, we could break our snowfall record by Feb. !

        G!

      • Judy Sabatini says:

        Well G, you sound like a happy camper. I have this thing about driving in it, I don’t like it. But, if I have too, I will, I’ve learned to do that when we first moved up here almost 20 years now. Good Lord, that’s the longest we’ve loved anywhere.

        I have a 95 Chevy Lumina that I drive, and it goes pretty good in the snow, but there have been a few times I slid around corners. Kind of scary really. Everybody else here in the family has 4 wheel drive, but we won’t go there because I remember what you said the other night, so forget it.

        Let me ask you something. What is it about people when you tell somebody that you can’t make any donations because you and your husband lost your jobs, they get snotty with you? I have had at least 4 calls today for different donations and when I told them about me and Jim, their attitude changes, they are no longer friendly to you. The only ones I make really are to the VA and one for children cancer research. I don’t get people’s attitude when you can’t help.

        • Judy Sabatini says:

          meant to say live, not loved.

        • I have caller ID, and don’t answer if I don’t know the ID. Works well for me! Those that call get a % of what they can get you to donate, that’s why they change.

          G!

          • Judy Sabatini says:

            I have caller ID as well, but they call all day long, couldn’t take it anymore, so I answered. Maybe after me telling them I can’t help, they’ll ” LEAVE ME THE HELL ALONE” Walter from Jeff Dunham.

            I know it’s their job and all, but to badger someone to make a donation is definitely a no in my book, especially when they get that snotty attitude, then I definitely say no. Just me, and the way I am.

            • I use an old tactic to solve this problem, and have fun with too. As a pain in the butt, and they keep calling, once you know who they are, change the game, make up a story, like this: Look dude or lady, I’m so fuc%^ng sick of my old man beating my ass, I just killed him with a baseball bat, how can I get rid of the body?”

              At that point, you win and they will stop calling, I know, I do it all the time! 👿

              G!

              • Judy Sabatini says:

                Sounds good G, but with my luck, they’d call the cops, then I’d really have a problem, and how the hell do you explain that you were only trying toge rid of them? God, that made me laugh. Maybe if I get the guts, I can try that next time and see what happens.

              • below

              • Funny G-man
                A friend of mine’s husband died with credit card debt. The collector’s kept calling demanded an address to keep sending bills. After several calls she gave them the address of the cemetary where he was buried. End of problem

  69. v. Holland says:

    Heard this on O’Reilly tonight-made me laugh 🙂

    • 😆 That’s great, I remember Ray Stevens when he di a song called “the steaker”, amongst other comedy songs, still have the original album. Nice to see him STAND UP FOR AMERICA!!!!!

      G!

    • Judy Sabatini says:

      Hey V

      I love it, that was good.

      • v. Holland says:

        Hey Guys,

        I wonder if it would be legal to burn a few hundred of these and mail them to our senators.

        • Judy Sabatini says:

          Only one way to find out, and I guess that would be to do it. How they going to know who mailed them? Just don’t mail them from your city.

        • I would say that he would want us too!

          G!

  70. Judy!

    The cops will come, explain what you did, and why. They will laugh there ass off, and will not return in the future, they will learn to call you and ask if you were messing with a telemarketer. I haven’t had a telemarketer call me in over a year, and forget anybody wanting a donation. They blacklist your number, the best thing that could happen! 🙂

    G!

    • Judy Sabatini says:

      Well, I don’t know, some of the cops here don’t have a sense of humor. But it is tempting to try next time, that’s if I don’t chicken out.

      Well G, I’m going for the night, have a couple bills that need paying. Been good talking with you and you have a good night.

      Take care

      Judy

  71. Oh D13:

    Get my email address from USW and send me your picture in the Bama shirt.
    Welcome to the big boy league.
    Rolllllllllll Tide!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • As to stopping Alabama running game, think again. We had two backs over a hundred yards.

  72. v. Holland says:

    Go to the link-You’ll love the picture-I love the trouble people will go to when they want to make a point.

    http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/Environment/2010/01/06/12367701-ap.html

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