Calling a Bluff

I guess he folds.. passed out, poker

President Obama announced a troop draw-down from Afghanistan.  I know I’m no military expert, but my limited understanding is you don’t tell an opponent what you are going to do, ever.  To be blunt, Obama cares more about the political gain than the possible loss of life.  And how interesting, this ends just before the election.  The president has also released 30 million barrels from our Strategic Reserve, to offset the loss caused by the Libya conflict.  But the Saudi’s had already increased production to offset that loss, so there has been no shortage, there is a surplus.  The price of gas and diesel has been dropping.  Makes you wonder why it wasn’t released when it started going up instead of after it had dropped?  And I think the outcry from the right is overblown when they say it’s “dangerous”.  This amounts to only four percent of the reserve.  Trying to frame it as a danger is pretty lame, but to defend it as anything except a political maneuver to help his re-election is equally lame.  I think the president has shown he is callous and calculating, willing to use anything as a bargaining chip to further his goals.

Obama has continued to raise in this game, and it looks as if the Repug’s have gone “all in”.  House Republican Leader Eric Cantor and Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., the GOP negotiators, walked out on V.P. Biden Thursday. They have demanded the president come to the table.  The House has been forcefully clear that they will only allow a budget that includes major spending cuts.  The Obama adminstration is less clear, only saying tax increases have to be part of any balanced budget.  Leaves me wondering what spending cuts will the Democrats agree to?

Rep. Xavier Becerra, D-Calif., accused Republicans of “running away from the mess they created.””Is this the adult moment they promised the American people in November?” he said.


The Democrats not taking time to pass a budget last year when they had a majority in the house, senate and the oval office, that didn’t contribute to the “mess”?

In January President Obama released a budget which he claimed would reduce the deficit and somehow still included spending increases.  Then Paul Ryan released his budget proposal and received a huge amount of media attention.  Obama attacked Ryan’s plan, including making false statements about it, and then announced a “new” budget he had designed, that would fix everything.   A few months later and we are still waiting to see this new budget, not just hear Obama tell us how great it’s going to be.

I like and respect Cavuto and Varney at FOX Business.  They seem well-informed on financial matters and explain things where it almost makes sense.  Both of them warn about the consequences of not raising the debt limit.  I have looked into this a little more and think they are wrong.  I am putting them in the same camp as Geithner on this one issue.  Turns out, if the debt limit is reached, it does not mean default, unless we do not make the payments on the interest.  That adds up to about six percent of GDP.  We are going to default because of six percent?  Please, anybody with a checking account could figure out what bills to pay first, reduce their spending, and get the books balanced again.

One thing you hear again and again, SS checks  or our soldiers fighting, their paychecks will not be sent!  It might be true, but the president will be deciding where that six percent cut will come from, troops in Afghanistan or the EPA.  Will grandpa get his monthly check, or will Amtrak continue running empty trains.  How much federal money goes to support “Art”?  How much could be saved by grounding AirMuckingForceOne?  How about he and FLOTUS stay at home and do some TV dinners?  No parties, foreign or domestic should be had at taxpayer expense until a balanced budget is achieved!(damn, I kinda wish I had run for congress just to propose that)  I recommend to all, do some searches on debt limit myths.

obama, boehner

Full disclosure, I was not against Obama when he first started campaigning.  I am an independent and liked some of the things he was saying.  He promised to be a uniter, not a divider, and to end the partisan games both parties played.  He promised to end rewarding lobbyist with positions in administration.  So I then researched Senator Obama, checking his voting record as a US senator as well as his time in Illinois, and found him to be the worst politician I have come across in modern times.  I think he is the type that will say or do anything to achieve their goals.  Lets see if I am right.

What was that comment after the election and swearing-in? ” I won.”

President Obama listened to Republican gripes about his stimulus package during a meeting with congressional leaders Friday morning – but he also left no doubt about who’s in charge of these negotiations. “I won,” Obama noted matter-of-factly, according to sources familiar with the conversation.

The exchange arose as top House and Senate Republicans expressed concern to the president about the amount of spending in the package. They also raised red flags about a refundable tax credit that returns money to those who don’t pay income taxes, the sources said.

After Friday’s meeting, Democratic and Republican leaders publicly wrangled over the developing stimulus plan.  But perhaps taking a cue from Obama’s “I won” line when Democrats were asked if they were concerned about Republicans blocking the package, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid had a swift one-word answer: “No.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the bill was on track for passage by February 16, while Republicans continued to voice their opposition.

“We expressed our concerns about some of the spending that’s being proposed in the House bill,” House Minority Leader John Boehner said after meeting with Obama.  “How can you spend hundreds of millions of dollars on contraceptives?” Boehner asked. “How does that stimulate the economy?”

Reid said a Congressional Budget Office report that says the stimulus funds won’t be pumped into the economy until 2010 doesn’t provide an accurate picture.  He also said Orszag guaranteed “that at least 75 percent of the bill would go directly into the economy within the first 18 months.”

Healthcare, “we have to pass it so you can read it”,  Pelosi.  How can I blame Obama for that?   Didn’t he say he would hold the debate live on CSPAN?  And, Obama will not sign any non-emergency bill without giving the American public an opportunity to review and comment on the White House website for five days.” Obama is 1-for-11 on this promise so far.


Although Barack Obama promised lobbyists would not serve in his White House, and issued executive orders restricting former lobbyists, more than 40 ex-lobbyists now populate top jobs in the Obama administration, including three Cabinet secretaries, the Director of Central Intelligence, and many senior White House officials. 

Is there a sin that is so terrible that it can never be forgiven?  Between God and sinners, maybe not, but between politicians and we who elected them, you betcha!  My Obama unforgivable sin was the appointment of Tim Geithner.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner

U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner. Photographer: Joshua Roberts/Bloomberg

Geithner Extends Debt-Ceiling Deadline to Aug. 2 With Extraordinary Steps

From his tax troubles, Goldman-Sachs goldenboy, there were major reason why he should never have been given any position in our government.  Months ago he was lecturing the Germans for doing exactly the same thing the USA has been doing, monetizing their debt.  And lately he’s been issuing  dire warning if the debt ceiling isn’t raised.  How many deadlines has he set, then extended?  A pure partisan politician playing his parties themesong!  Not enough “sin”?

More than two years after Obama took office vowing to banish “special interests” from his administration, nearly 200 of his biggest donors have landed plum government jobs and advisory posts, won federal contracts worth millions of dollars for their business interests or attended numerous elite White House meetings and social events, an investigation by iWatch News has found.

These “bundlers” raised at least $50,000 — and sometimes more than $500,000 — in campaign donations for Obama’s campaign. Many of those in the “Class of 2008” are now being asked to bundle contributions for Obama’s reelection, an effort that could cost $1 billion.

And One For Charlie!

New emails obtained by The Daily Caller contradict claims by the Obama administration that the Treasury Department would avoid “intervening in the day-to-day management” of General Motors post-auto bailout.

These messages reveal that Treasury officials were involved in decision-making that led to more than 20,000 non-union workers losing their pensions.

A little forgiveness

Some of my friends on the right may now disagree with me, but I give Obama a free pass on a couple of things, such as the troop withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan, and the closing of Gitmo.  It was stupid of him to make these pledges without the information or authority to make them happen.

Should I have save that for the last of the article?  Ended on  a good note?  Oh well, back to bashing.  I think the Libya war is illegal. libya_061511.jpg Should Clinton have been impeached?  No.  Should Obama?  YES!  The difference is in breaking the law.  Libya has been covered, but some other instances of where this administration thinks the law does not apply to them….

Senator John Cornyn of Texas will be sending a letter to President Obama Wednesday afternoon, signed by at least a majority of Senate Republicans, that will call on the president to immediately submit a proposal to Congress that addresses Medicare funding.

The letter will note that by not presenting a proposal, the Obama administration will be in violation of the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernizations Act of 2003.

At the time of this publication, the letter had 35 Republican signatures, though more were expected to follow.

According to the letter, a proposal “would help prevent the bankruptcy of this vital program for Americas seniors and keep the federal government from going further into debt.”

The letter also notes that in 2008 the Bush administration complied with the law and submitted a legislative proposal to Congress though it was never acted on.

“Your Administration, however, has failed to submit such a proposal for the last three years,” the letter will say. “This not only defies federal law but also abdicates your Administration’s responsibility to lead.”

The law in question says that once a certain threshold is reached in the percentage of Medicare funding that comes from the general revenue fund (45 percent), the president is required to submit a plan to Congress that addresses the program’s instability within 15 days of submitting a budget proposal. The provision is known as the “Medicare Trigger”.

That trigger has been reached the last six years.

Cornyn’s letter stresses the legal requirement on the president, but also points out that the largest claim on the federal budget over the next 75 years is Medicare, which is predicted to cost a total of $35 trillion.

On Tuesday, Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama and Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin submitted a similar letter to the president.

And what about those 1,400 Obamacare waivers?  How is that program being administered?  Damned if anybody knows.  All freedom of information requests have been  ignored or refused.  Funny thing, the waivers were not part of, or allowed, under the healthcare law.  So how can they do this?  Make special exemptions for those they decide are necessary?  Turns out, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) granted itself the power through administrative rules.  Everyone “seeing” the transparency here?

Obama administration official Steve Larsen said no new applications, or waiver renewal applications, will be accepted after Sept. 22 this year. Larsen said politics was “absolutely not” a part of the decision to do away with the controversial program, but it certainly looks that way with the decision to dump the news on Friday. It’s a common public relations practice to roll news out late on Fridays when trying to shift attention away from controversial topics.

The Friday night news dump comes after a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report earlier this week still left several unanswered questions on how the administration was handling the Obamacare waiver process.

More Power Scotty!

Obama said, “I actually think we should explore nuclear power as part of the energy mix,” expressed on July 23, 2007;”  Does exploring nuclear power mean researching how to place barriers to nuclear power and make it mare difficult or costly?  Maybe if the government forces the cost high enough, solar and wind will seem more reasonable.  Idle speculation on my part?

Obama administration caught hiding information in effort to shut down the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste facility

So much for their support for nuclear power. Obama’s appointee to head the Nuclear Regulatory Commission got caught hiding data..   That may not be a crime, but what about murder?

More than 90 percent of the guns recovered in Mexico come from the United States, many from gun shops that lay in our shared border,” President Barack Obama said on a visit to Mexico on April 16, 2009. “So we have responsibilities as well.”

That was disproven even before he and Clinton made those statements.  Two thirds of the Mexican guns were Russian, Chinese or other, so were never sent to ATF for background checks.  Add to that, the US supplied the Mexican army and police with weapons, only for them to be sold or stolen by corrupt Mexican authorities to the drug cartels they are supposed to be fighting.  But is there a way this lie could become “true”?  Under Bush, the ATF allowed guns to be purchased illegally, and then tracked them as far as they could safely.  No guns were allowed across the border, where they could no longer be tracked.  Under Obama/Holder, the ATF  upped the number of guns sold and allowed them to go into Mexico.  Call me crazy, but I can see a Obama administration helping guns go to Mexico so they could use that to demand stricter gun control laws.  They were counting on a compliant media to not question how/why it was suddenly so easy to traffic guns into Mexico.

Four Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) agents in transcribed interviews with top GOP oversight official Darrell Issa’s office are contradicting the Justice Department’s account of “Operation Fast and Furious,” saying hundreds of weapons -– including assault rifles and military-grade sniper weapons -– were allowed to escape into the clutches of Mexican drug cartels in an apparently reckless investigative strategy.

Their testimony raises the question of whether Ronald Weich, a deputy to Attorney General Eric Holder, lied to congressional investigators in a Feb. 4 letter denying the allegations. Weich is testifying before Issa’s committee Wednesday.

The four ATF agents describe how the weapons were tracked from sales at U.S. gun shops but not seized as is normal practice. The goal of the operation was to track the weapons as they progressed from the purchasers through criminal networks.

But two rifles involved in “Fast and Furious” were found at the scene of Border Agent Brian Terry’s murder Dec. 14, 2010, apparently provoking the Justice Department to halt the operation in the aftermath of the murder. Jaime Avila, the purchaser of the guns, had been under surveillance for over a year as he illegally purchased weapons.

The ATF agents’ testimony, from John Dodson, Olindo James Casa, Lawrence Alt and Peter Forceilli, adds additional context and detail to “Fast and Furious” not previously known. The testimony is excerpted in a report from Issa released on the eve of the hearing where Weich is testifying.

Top-ranking Justice Department officials have previously denied the allegations, saying ATF agents made “every effort” to seize weapons purchased illegally. Since earlier blanket denials, however, Justice officials have since narrowed the scope of what they are denying, defining terms in ways the ATF agents say are at odds with common usage.

A spokesman for House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa told The Daily Caller the congressman expects his investigations into the Justice Department’s gun walking programs to point to a much higher political appointee than acting ATF director Kenneth Melson. Melson is widely expected to resign some time in the next couple of days in the face of political pressure from Issa’s investigations into Project Gunrunner and Operation Fast Furious


Obama Says Jobs, Economy Remain His Top Priority

Then why are all the headlines showing him at fundraisers?  Where is that budget he talks about but has yet to produce?  We know the Spendulous failed to keep unemployment in check, and today it’s hovering around nine percent.  So what is the administration doing to help create jobs?  They are suing Boeing!

Republican House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa has joined the chorus crying foul over what seems to be an aggressive overreach by the Obama administration’s National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in declaring Boeing’s expansion into South Carolina, a non-union state, illegal because it allegedly retaliate against union employees in Washington state.

 Issa said. “The NLRB has interpreted the National Labor Relations Act in a way where they have basically filed suit against Boeing, even though what Boeing was doing was simply choosing to expand and put new jobs in South Carolina. Well, they were also adding jobs in Everett, Wash., the Seattle area and we are questioning whether or not they have exceeded — there’s no absolute law that says they can do that. They are interpreting that even though it’s a growth, ultimately by not putting them in Everett it is a retaliation. I think that is far in excess of their mandate. If the labor union wants to make a suit, make a suit but for the government to spend your tax dollars to pursue seems to be over the top.”Issa said Boeing had merit in building a South Carolina facility and thus he questioned the use of taxpayer money to prevent the facility from being operational.

How does his administration plan to spur job growth?  Ellmers then said: “Sixty-four percent of jobs that are created in this country are for small business.” Oh good!  Obama has a plan to help small business.

Geithner: Taxes on ‘Small Business’ Must Rise So Government Doesn’t ‘Shrink’

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner told the House Small Business Committee on Wednesday that the Obama administration believes taxes on small business must increase so the administration does not have to “shrink the overall size of government programs.”

The administration’s plan to raise the tax rate on small businesses is part of its plan to raise taxes on all Americans who make more than $250,000 per year—including businesses that file taxes the same way individuals and families do.

Geithner’s explanation of the administration’s small-business tax plan came in an exchange with first-term Rep. Renee Ellmers (R.-N.C.). Ellmers, a nurse, decided to run for the U.S. House of Representatives in 2010 after she became active in the grass-roots opposition to President Barack Obama’s proposed health-care reform plan in 2009.

“Overwhelmingly, the businesses back home and across the country continue to tell us that regulation, lack of access to capital, taxation, fear of taxation, and just the overwhelming uncertainties that our businesses face is keeping them from hiring,” Ellmers told Geithner. “They just simply cannot.”

She then challenged Geithner on the administration’s tax plan.

Geithner conceded the point, but then suggested the administration’s planned tax increase on small businesses would be “good for growth.”“No, that’s right. I agree with that,” said Geithner. “But just to put it in perspective, it’s important to recognize why are we doing this. You know, our deficits are 10 percent of GDP, higher than they’ve been since any time in the postwar period really. We have a big hole to dig out of, and we have to figure out how to do that in a way that’s balanced, good for growth, fair to people as a whole.”

Geithner, continuing, argued that if the administration did not extract a trillion dollars in new revenue from its plan to increase taxes on people earning more than $250,000, including small businesses, the government would in effect “finance” what he called a “tax benefit” for those people.

Also remember the gulf deep water drilling moratorium?

The Obama Administration acted in contempt by continuing its deepwater-drilling moratorium after the policy was struck down, a New Orleans judge ruled.

Interior Department regulators acted with “determined disregard” by lifting and reinstituting a series of policy changes that restricted offshore drilling, following the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history, U.S. District Judge, Martin Feldman of New Orleans ruled yesterday.

“Each step the government took following the court’s imposition of a preliminary injunction showcases its defiance,” Feldman said in the ruling.

“Such dismissive conduct, viewed in tandem with the re-imposition of a second blanket and substantively identical moratorium, and in light of the national importance of this case, provide this court with clear and convincing evidence of the government’s contempt,” Feldman said.

It seems the law has a different meaning when you are the most powerful man in the world.  Although this is longer than I had intended, I’m already thinking of other things I missed.  So I will end here still wondering how anyone could still vote for this lying sack of bulldookey……..








STATEMENT: “We will launch a sweeping effort to root out waste, inefficiency, and unnecessary spending in our government, and every American will be able to see how and where we spend taxpayer dollars by going to a new website called” – President Obama, January 28, 2009

EXPIRATION DATE: “More than two months after some of the funds were released, [] offers little detail on where the money is going . . . The government [spent] $84 million on a website that doesn’t have a search function, when its purpose is to ‘root out waste, inefficiency, and unnecessary spending in our government.’” April 2, 2009

Eighteen from his first 100 days:

1. “As President I will recognize the Armenian Genocide.”

2. “I will make sure that we renegotiate [NAFTA].

3. Opposed a Colombian Free Trade Agreement because advocates ignore that “labor leaders have been targeted for assassination on a fairly consistent basis.”

4. “Now, what I’ve done throughout this campaign is to propose a net spending cut.”

5. “If we see money being misspent, we’re going to put a stop to it, and we will call it out and we will publicize it.

6. “Yesterday, Jim, the head of Caterpillar, said that if Congress passes our plan, this company will be able to rehire some of the folks who were just laid off.”

7. “I want to go line by line through every item in the Federal budget and eliminate programs that don’t work, and make sure that those that do work work better and cheaper.”

8. “[My plan] will not help speculators who took risky bets on a rising market and bought homes not to live in but to sell.”

9. “Instead of allowing lobbyists to slip big corporate tax breaks into bills during the dead of night, we will make sure every single tax break and earmark is available to every American online.”

10. “We can no longer accept a process that doles out earmarks based on a member of Congress’s seniority, rather than the merit of the project.”

11. “If your family earns less than $250,000 a year, you will not see your taxes increased a single dime.  I repeat: not one single dime.”

12. “Barack Obama and Joe Biden believe the United States has to be frank with the Chinese about such failings and will press them to respect human rights.”

13. “We must take out Osama bin Laden and his lieutenants if we have them in our sights.”

14. “Lobbyists won’t work in my White House!

15. “The real gamble in this election is playing the same Washington game with the same Washington players and expecting a different result.”

16. “I’ll make oil companies like Exxon pay a tax on their windfall profits, and we’ll use the money to help families pay for their skyrocketing energy costs and other bills.”

17. “Obama will not sign any non-emergency bill without giving the American public an opportunity to review and comment on the White House website for five days.”

18. A special one on the 100th day, “The first thing I’d do as president is sign the Freedom of Choice Act. That’s the first thing I’d do.”



  1. “I think the president has shown he is callous and calculating, willing to use anything as a bargaining chip to further his goals.”

    hahahaha you do realise you are talking about a politician right? I think what you just said generally comes as part of the job description.

    • GoodDay Bob,

      How’s you weather been? We’ve went from major flooding to near drought, but had a nice rain yesterday. Warm, 90-98 most days.

      “willing to use anything as a bargaining chip to further his goals.” I think most people have a line they won’t cross, like selling their children or starting a war. I’m not sure where or if he even has a line.

      It’s “generally comes as part of the job description.” But aren’t we looking for that rare exception like Silent Cal? Or John Wayne?

      • It got to 85 over the weekend, just a touch too hot for my taste.

        I just don’t understand the demonization of Obama like he is somehow different from every other politician. When I lived in the States it was a bit of a culture shock for me, lots of people who I knew used to talk admiringly about politicians. Where I am from in the UK, when you say the word politician it is usually followed by spitting on the floor. There are a few old balls here that go to rallies etc, but the majority understand that to be a politician you have to be the vilest of human scum.
        It always makes me chuckle when people make out that Obama is just waiting outside their kids bedroom window so he can drink their blood, and then in the same breath praise Palin or Romney and vice versa. They are all the same.

        Expecting something different is like me letting go of a ball and hoping it will rocket into space instead of falling to the ground.

  2. Bob is right … which makes BF right (about “this” government) … not the evil nonsense, but the corrupt stuff. Both sides are puppets for big business. There is no government of the people, by the people (another founding father crock of shit). This is a bought and sold government by corporate American for corporate America, which is why so many of you contradict yourselves when you defend “free markets” … then complain about corporations.

    One for Charlie: These messages reveal that Treasury officials were involved in decision-making that led to more than 20,000 non-union workers losing their pensions.

    Bada-boom, bada-bing. Workers of America unite.

    Obama is no better than the last moron in the white house (Mr. tax break and deregulation, George “I can’t speak very well” Bush). He’s no worse, no better. The Reps and Dems are no different; one a pubic hair to the left of the other. Both are there for business. The middle class is getting crushed daily and I’m wondering where the the hell my “investment” (my bailout dollars that “saved” Wall Street) dividends are? If I was forced to invest in Goldman Sachs, et al, where is my percentage of the record profits they’ve shown since the bailout? What’s up with that free market?

    And please, no more book-length posts (I’m back in school now and can’t read all that stuff with everything else) … oy vey.

    • Charlie, Charlie….
      “Workers of America unite”? What does that mean? Do we all have to join unions to keep the government from screwing us over? How many of their actions were actually illegal in how they manage the auto bailouts?

      You want short posts, follow the link.

      • LOI, LOI … just skip to the TK bipartisan rant (I pick on Obama as well)

        • “Do you really think there’s a difference between parties? ”
          (Dem/Rep, No. TeaParty, VDLG, yes)
          “Do you really think that oath of office has to do with protecting the constitution?”
          (To some or most, yes, their word means something)
          “Something tells me it should read the way it is: to protect and preserve corporate America at any and all costs to the taxpaying public.”
          (But you’re wrong Charlie. First, a true free market and the government of our founders would not have government involved in business. Second, if you look at what Obama is doing, rewarding business that support him, he’s also setting them up for fascism. His government will control private business. Then you won’t have to worry about evil big business making all those profits. Of course, it’s still damn good money to be working at Fannie/Freddie today.

          • First, a true free market and the government of our founders would not have government involved in business.

            You should know better than to go there, LOI … mention the founding fathers and their wonderful principles and I’ll remind you of slavery and how that helped southern businesses (with those same founding fathers not blinking an eye).

            • And you changed the subject instead of debating the truth or merits of my statement.
              You keep bashing our “free market” when you know quite well that is not what it is and excuse government for the messes it has made, calling for even bigger government.

              • USWeapon says:

                Exactly LOI… That reverting to the slavery argument is the only apparent reaction Chaz has when the topic of free markets come up. It seems that most on the left are not interested in discussing the topic, at least not honestly. They prefer to pretend that truly free markets are what got us to where we are, ignoring the hand of government in causing all the troubles…

            • Yea, it seems that Charlie thinks the Founding Fathers should have been able to just snap their fingers and make all these guys agree-it obviously doesn’t work that way then or now-but lets ignore the truth. I guess, maybe they could have put the Constitution to the side and just had a Civil War right then to settle the issue-course they were just getting over the Revolutionary War-so that idea probably wasn’t very attractive-and they of course would have had to have a consensus for that idea to work too. But knowing Charlie, he’ll probably just think these points prove he’s right about communism-but his idea of communism would include a panel of people-not just a dictator-so a consensus would still be necessary. 🙂

    • Charlie, the Stella man….how are ya…..still spouting your rhetoric,I see. Hope you are well.

      • Come on, Colonel … I went after the Dems pretty good on that last TK post. I’m back from school (in New Hampshire—live free or die state) … oy vey …

        Hope all is well by you, too, sir.

        • Rhetoric was all encompassing….just missed your side of things. As Plutonian as they are…but what they hey….the Plutonian Sun is in a different orbit right now…..must be confusing to you.

  3. LOI for Michelle Bachman’s Talking Points manager!

    That’s a lot to take in at one time but I’ll comment on two points. Gas price: I started out on a roadtrip Sunday morning. Made it to Pontoon Beach Illinois the same day. My city $3.87. Pontoon Beach $3.27…gimme a break.

    Fox News and the debt ceiling: I’ve wondered the same myself. Is Rupert Murdoch playing on both sides of the fence?

  4. 😐

    • PS, How about a little help here? Bob & Charlie have me outnumbered.

      June 29, 2011
      Obama’s Afghan troop withdrawal not among options presented by his generals
      Thomas Lifson

      Yesterday in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Lt. General John Allen, slated to be the new top commander in Afghanistan, contradicted an (anonymous) administration spokesman, and stated under direct questioning that the troop withdrawal program announced by President Obama was not among the options presented to him by his generals.

      In other words, President Obama came up with the plan on his own. His top commanders did not present it to him as one of the options they offered for him to choose among.

      This makes whatever outcomes take place in Afghanistan the sole responsibility of Obama. It also mean s that either General Allen, who was under oath and has a lifetime of devoted service, is lying, or that an anonymous administration spokesman is lying about whether the generals presented the chosen option to the president. Stephen Hayes presents the facts in the Weekly Standard:

      Allen’s claim, which came under oath, contradicts the line the White House had been providing reporters over the past week-that Obama simply chose one option among several presented by General David Petraeus. In a conference call last Wednesday, June 22, a reporter asked senior Obama administration officials about those options. “Did General Petraeus specifically endorse this plan, or was it one of the options that General Petraeus gave to the president?”

      The senior administration official twice claimed that the Obama decision was within the range of options the military presented to Obama. “In terms of General Petraeus, I think that, consistent with our approach to this, General Petraeus presented the president with a range of options for pursuing this drawdown. There were certainly options that went beyond what the president settled on in terms of the length of time that it would take to recover the surge and the pace that troops would come out – so there were options that would have kept troops in Afghanistan longer at a higher number. That said, the president’s decision was fully within the range of options that were presented to him and he has the full support of his national security team.”

      The official later came back to the question and reiterated his claim. “So to your first question I would certainly – I would certainly characterize it that way. There were a range. Some of those options would not have removed troops as fast as the president chose to do, but the president’s decision was fully in the range of options the president considered.”

      (The full transcript of the exchange is below; the full transcript of the call is at the link.)

      Meanwhile, our foes in Afghanistan, the Taliban, have already ramped up the aggressiveness of their attacks, striking the Intercontinental Hotel in the heart of Kabul. They recognize weakeness.

      • S’ok, LOI…….we have to have Bob and Charlie…..what would we do for entertainment?

        • Good morning, Colonel! I missed you …

          Calm down, not that much …:)

          Entertainment? Have you ever reread some of what you crazies on the right post here? At the least it’s downright funny. What makes it scary is the passion behind it.

          Oy vey …

      • Mathius™ says:

        Bob & Charlie have me outnumbered.

        I’m sorry LOI, I’m a little swamped this week.. or I’d be happy to gang up on you too.

        I haven’t even read your article through yet (though I will eventually), but let’s just go ahead and assume that I fervently disagree with everything you said. 🙂

      • You should be asking why the pull out was not done sooner and bigger. The Afghanistan war was doomed the minute it started. We should be grateful that the Russians arent supplying the Taliban with surface to air missiles really, although it probably would have ended the war quicker.

  5. Obama pushing behind scenes to win over big-dollar donors
    By Peter Wallsten, Published: June 27

    President Obama and top White House aides are waging a behind-the-scenes push to win over skeptical big-dollar donors — whose early money is needed to help fund a dramatic summertime expansion of his battleground-state machinery.

    Campaign officials are working to broaden Obama’s network of “bundlers,” the well-connected rainmakers tasked with soliciting big checks from wealthy donors, while seeking to preserve the aura of a grass-roots movement by luring back the kind of small Internet donations that helped shatter fundraising records four years ago.

    To do so, Obama and his aides are leveraging every asset available to a sitting president — from access to top West Wing officials to a possible food tasting with the White House chef.

    Much of the fundraising in recent weeks has occurred at targeted events designed to appeal to specific groups, many of which have expressed frustration with administration policies, including Jews, gays and business leaders. Obama has attended 28 fundraisers from coast to coast — a pace that could continue, or even accelerate, over the next several months.

    The West Wing charm offensive shows how Obama’s White House, which has eschewed Clinton-style traditions of feeding donor egos with Lincoln bedroom overnights and frequent phone calls from the president, is adjusting itself for a campaign that needs to overcome low approval ratings and a sour economy.

    “They were more skewed toward their base,” said Steven Green, a former Samsonite chief executive and donor to Bill and Hillary Clinton’s campaigns who hosted an Obama fundraiser in Miami this month. “Now they realize that there is this large group of donors out there, and for better or for worse, they need to cater to them. To be frank, I think it’s somewhat new to them, and they’re not quite sure how to address that donor base. [The donors] are pretty high-maintenance.”

  6. For LOI……Good morning. I hope all is well with you. A lengthy post but spot on and apparently well researched. Several things that I will have to comment as time permits…so I will start with the border issue since I am in it first hand…on the ground. I see and deal with it almost daily.

    Fast and Furious was a failure even in the planning stages. IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO TRACK WEAPONS IN A STING OPERATION AND THEN STOP IT. It cannot be done. We see this daily. Obama AND his administration have lost all credibiilty whatsoever in Texas. They are corrupt and they are criminal and if they are reading this blog…come and get me for saying so…. Not that he or anyone cares. We have border agents that are supposed to use “non leathal” force on the border. Non lethal force is the use of “bean bags” instead of bullets. We simply laugh at this because the Federal Border Agents will not respond to calls. They will not interfer in a robbery, rape, murder in progress, drug smuggling apprehension…etc…for two reasons. Bean bags instead of bullets and they have been directly ordered by Homeland Security and the Obama Administration (one and the same) to turn away from such. DIRECTLY ORDERED by this administration. I stand by that and anyone from the Feds reading this blog….come and get me. I talk with these guys every single day.

    Guns that are being captured ARE NOT being bought in the United States at normal gun shows and smuggled to Mexico unless ordered to do so by this administration. Let me repeat this…..ORDERED BY THIS ADMINISTRATION. Every gun show in Texas…EVERY ONE OF THEM….do not sell to anyone without a background check. It is true that you can buy any weapon here….but NOT without proper identification and it has to be more than a driver’s license. There are no “mass sales” of AK 47’s or Uzi’s or any assault type weapon to one individual.

    Of the weapons that we capture, over 70% are not obtainable in the United States. They are coming in through the ports of call in…..ready…… Puerto Vallarta, Matamoros, Acupulco, Tijuana, Santa Rosalio, La Paz… name a few. All ports of call and most tourist spots because of the lack of scrutiny. It is no secret where these weapons are coming into Mexico….Everyone knows this. The MSM knows it, Eric Holder knows it. Janet Napolitano knows it. President Obama knows it. Felipe Calderon knows it. I know it and now you know it. This is no secret and the administration pretends that there is no problem on the Mexico border and Obama makes jokes about moats and alligators.

    We, AMERICANS, are being kidnapped, robbed, raped, extorted, pillaged, sons and daughters molested, weapons and drugs are in mass quantitites in and on the border and being used to kill innocent non violent Americans…..and this administration is doing nothing except…..ordering a stupid, idiotic, non working policy of non intervention and turning away from the real problem down here. Our President needs to get his black/caucasian ass down here and see what the problem really is and quit ordering blackouts of the news media, quit threatening to cut off funds because Texas does not toe the proverbial liberal line, quit ordering the border agents to NOT REPORT crime statistics, quit ordering the non arrest of illegal activity so as to affect the crime statistics in the local jurisdictions, quit running guns and the ordering of sales under the penalty of shuttuing the dealer down if he does not comply, and quit lying about the border. It is a war zone and getting worse. It is an abomination. And this administration has ordered it.

    • By the way….any Fed monitoring this site……come on down a get me. You will find me on the Texas size of the border doing YOUR job.

      • Mathius™ says:

        Hey… wait a second.. Puerto Vallarta is where I go on vacation every year… and there’s a pirate ship in the bay (sure, it pretends to be a tourist trap, but isn’t that just what DPM would want you to believe?).. I wonder…

        As for being on the Texas “size” of the border, I think you’re doing it wrong.. the best defense is a good offense, no?

        • We too like PVR. Things must be a-changing there tho as I heard on the news earlier this week that a major cruise line (forgot which) has now dropped PVR as a stop due to security reasons. Must be something going on.

          • Yup…..Vallarta land is not a good place to be. If you stay on the beach…and do not go to town and stay in at night….you are ok….as long as you have your AK47…they are readily available at the POE.

        • Fruedian slip… know us Texans and “size” …(ahem).

          Was wondering where that DPM was….He sorta left in a hurry.

    • President Barack Obama’s administration is quietly offering a quasi-amnesty for hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants, while aiming to win reelection by mobilizing a wave of new Hispanic voters, say supporters of stronger immigration law enforcement.

      The new rules were quietly announced Friday with a new memo from top officials at the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency. The “prosecutorial discretion” memo says officials need not enforce immigration laws if illegal immigrants are enrolled in an education center or if their relatives have volunteered for the US military.

      “They’re pushing the [immigration] agents to be even more lax, to go further in not enforcing the law,” said Kris Kobach, Kansas’ secretary of state. “At a time when millions of Americans are unemployed and looking for work, this is more bad news coming from the Obama administration… [if the administration] really cared about putting Americans back to work, it would be vigorously enforcing the law,” said Kobach, who has helped legislators in several states draft local immigration-related laws.

      “We think it is an excellent step,” said Laura Vasquez, at the Hispanic-advocacy group, La Raza, which pushed for the policies, and which is working with other groups to register Hispanics to vote in 2012. “What’s very important is how the prosecutorial discretion memo is implemented” on the streets, she said.

      The Hispanic vote could be crucial in the 2012 election, because the Obama campaign hopes to offset its declining poll ratings by registering new Hispanic voters in crucial swing states, such as Virginia and North Carolina.

      To boost the Hispanic vote, the administration has enlisted support from Hispanic media figures, appointed an experienced Hispanic political operative to run the political side of the Obama reelection campaign, and has maintained close ties to Hispanic advocacy groups, including La Raza. For example, La Raza’s former senior vice president and lobbyist, Cecilia Munoz, was hired by the Obama administration as director of intergovernmental affairs in 2009.

      On Friday, officials at ICE announced several new administrative changes to immigration enforcement.

      The primary document was the six-page “prosecutorial discretion” memo, which provided new reasons for officials to not deport illegal immigrants.

      “When weighing whether an exercise of prosecutorial discretion may be warranted for a given alien, ICE officials, agents and attorneys should consider all relevant factors, including, but not limited to – the circumstances of the person’s arrival in the United States … particularly if the alien came to the United States as a young child; the Person’s pursuit of education… .. whether the person, or the person’s immediate relative, has served in the U.S. military,” said the memo.

      “The factors are extremely broad and very troubling … [it] look like a stealth DREAM Act enforcement through non-enforcement,” said Kobach.

      Read more:

    • Just this one post-should convince people that Obama isn’t fit to be President.

      I keep reading everywhere that Perry isn’t tough on immigration-I’ve asked people to back up that charge but alas they never do—what say you d13?

  7. Judy Sabatini says:
  8. For LOI:

    You’re the one quoting “founding fathers”, my brother.

    As for government creating the mess we’re in, you’re right … least not forget it is big business that “Owns” this government, my friend. So your blame comes back to haunt you, correct?

    • No Charlie-business doesn’t own government-government decides which business’s they want to give special treats too-Even seats of power sometimes. All the other business’s and we the people pay for those treats.

  9. Love it! 🙂 🙂

    Lennon was a closet Republican: Assistant 291

    First posted: Tuesday, June 28, 2011 6:35:03 EDT PM

    John Lennon was a closet Republican, who felt a little embarrassed by his former radicalism, at the time of his death – according to the tragic Beatles star’s last personal assistant.

    Fred Seaman worked alongside the music legend from 1979 to Lennon’s death at the end of 1980 and he reveals the star was a Ronald Reagan fan who enjoyed arguing with left-wing radicals who reminded him of his former self.

    In new documentary Beatles Stories, Seaman tells filmmaker Seth Swirsky Lennon wasn’t the peace-loving militant fans thought he was while he was his assistant.

    He says, “John, basically, made it very clear that if he were an American he would vote for Reagan because he was really sour on (Democrat) Jimmy Carter.

    “He’d met Reagan back, I think, in the 70s at some sporting event… Reagan was the guy who had ordered the National Guard, I believe, to go after the young (peace) demonstrators in Berkeley, so I think that John maybe forgot about that… He did express support for Reagan, which shocked me.

    “I also saw John embark in some really brutal arguments with my uncle, who’s an old-time communist… He enjoyed really provoking my uncle… Maybe he was being provocative… but it was pretty obvious to me he had moved away from his earlier radicalism.

    “He was a very different person back in 1979 and 80 than he’d been when he wrote Imagine. By 1979 he looked back on that guy and was embarrassed by that guy’s naivete.”

    • Why would our government give any support to an organization that believes parts of our country belongs to them and Mexico-so they are excused from following our laws.

  10. Geithner…… Can’t say much about him….he is an idiot. DPM’s parrot knows more about economics than he does.

  11. Obamas to summer on Martha’s Vineyard once more in August
    June 29, 2011

    WASHINGTON — For the first family, their Vineyard haven is taking on the flavor of a summer White House. President Obama, for the third straight year, is planning to return to Martha’s Vineyard for vacation this summer, according to a White House official.

    The Obamas are scheduled to spend seven to 10 days on the island in mid- to late August, according to the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of security concerns.

    Arrangements for White House staff members and Secret Service personnel who travel with the Obamas have been made.

    The family is expected to stay at Blue Heron Farm in Chilmark, the same 28-acre estate the family rented in 2009 and 2010. The farm overlooks Tisbury Great Pond and includes a basketball court, pool, and boat house.

    Last year, White House officials told the Globe that the Obamas like Martha’s Vineyard in part because of its natural beauty, beaches, and food.

    “And it’s someplace that the president went before he was president and likes to go back because it’s a comfortable place where he can rest and recharge the batteries a little bit,’’ said Bill Burton, Obama’s deputy press secretary at the time.

    During past vacations on the Vineyard, the president spent much of his time on the farm but ventured out sporadically for golf and for family jaunts for ice cream and shopping.

    • President Obama called on Republicans Wednesday to drop their opposition to tax increases, saying “everybody else” is willing to sacrifice their “sacred cows” for deficit reduction and urging GOP lawmakers to do the same.

      The president also warned that Washington will soon run up against a “hard deadline” to strike a budget deal and raise the debt ceiling, rejecting suggestions that the situation is not as dire as the Treasury Department makes it out to be. Though some Republicans claim the Aug. 2 deadline — the date when Treasury warns the U.S. will face default if the cap is not raised — is not firm, Obama warned that it is a serious deadline and that failing to raise the cap could cause investors to pull out of the U.S., leading Treasury to raise interest rates.

      “The consequences for the U.S. economy will be significant and unpredictable,” Obama said, while he denied engaging in “scare tactics.” “Aug. 2 is a very important date and there’s no reason why we can’t get this done now.”

      The president is trying to salvage bipartisan budget talks that fell apart late last week when GOP negotiators bowed out. Obama is trying to find middle ground between the two parties on a plan to cut spending so he can muster a majority in Congress to approve an increase in the $14.3 trillion debt ceiling by Aug. 2.

      But Democrats, including Obama, continue to push hard for raising revenue as part of the deal, while Republicans are adamantly opposed to anything that resembles a tax hike. Senate Democrats said at a press conference Wednesday afternoon that the votes may not be there to support a budget deal if revenue increases are not included.

      The president showed frustration Wednesday with being called on to resolve the dispute. He suggested Congress should stop going on recess and stay in Washington through the summer until a deal is done.

      “You need to be here. I’ve been here,” he said of Congress. “You stay here, let’s get it done.”

      Read more:

      Michelle O’s $800,000 Entitlement?
      M Catharine Evans

      It’s evident by now Mrs. Obama will not yield to public opinion regarding her profligate globe-hopping. Michelle’s week-long junket to South Africa cost taxpayers nearly $800,000 according to an analysis by White House Dossier. The trip ended at a five-star hotel in the middle of a game preserve where rooms exceed $10,000 dollars per night. Michelle was accompanied by her daughters, brother Craig’s kids and granny who all enjoyed the “luxurious suites” and “one of the world’s finest art collections” at the Mateya.

      The cost of local transportation, Secret Service protection, food for her family and staff members, and the cost of firing up “Air Force Two” not to mention the pre-trip preparations all contributed to the final amounts.

      Mrs. Obama’s goodwill tour was supposed to “help youth leadership, health, education and wellness” in crime-ridden South Africa. The photos of her and the ‘fam’ showed them feeling “surreal” meeting Nelson Mandela, eating “fat cakes,” dancing and going on safari. A U.S. Embassy spokeswoman “made clear that the trip was partially a personal pilgrimage for the first lady.”

      A visit to South Africa is important for them as a family. She’ll be visiting many Struggle-era landmarks, including the Apartheid Museum (and) the Hector Pieterson Memorial.

      Obviously Michelle doesn’t give a whit that she’s fleecing average Americans. Or that draping Malia and Sasha in South African flags is downright bizarre for a first lady representing the United States. Or that eating fatty foods, but telling others to “eat your vegetables” is downright Dante-esque. She told a crowd of young people at the University of Cape Town her favorite food is French fries, “I can’t stop eating them.” Michelle just blew her credibility in her vanity campaign against obesity.

      The mainstream press won’t talk about Michelle Obama’s unnecessary expenses or duplicitous campaigns at a time when the United States is having a debt crisis. The same liberal media who tore Bush up for spending too much time at his ranch in Crawford or demonized Nancy Reagan for replacing the White House china is more than happy to keep quiet about Michelle’s extravagant WOD (wife of dictator) lifestyle.

      The Obamas are living it up while more and more people go on food stamps, lose their jobs and only dream of the vacations they used to take.

      Nothing’s changed for Mrs. Obama since last summer when she took a “Mommy and me” trip to Spain with Sasha, one of eight jaunts in a 4-month period. She continues spending other people’s hard-earned money while carting her friends and family all over the globe. The public is becoming increasingly disgusted with her defiant attitude of entitlement. Michelle couldn’t care less.

  12. Buck the Wala says:
    • Terry Evans says:

      I had already read that…I disagree. This is but one more step in the process that will eventually end up in the SCOTUS…

    • Buck…..this is the 6th Circuit…….give me a break. It will and should be over turned…it will go to SCOTUS…..I bet the 5th Circuit will rule differently.

      • Buck the Wala says:

        Read the opinion — pretty strong reasoning (and not far off from what yours truly has been arguing here at SUFA for some time now!)

        The concurring opinion is pretty interesting too — and written by a conservative judge who clerked for Scalia.

        • Terry Evans says:

 say “(and not far off from what yours truly has been arguing here at SUFA for some time now!)” What else would we expect…your liberal leanings and the 6th circuit match very nicely…

          • Buck the Wala says:

            If it were the 9th Circuit, I’d agree with you. The 6th Circuit, while generally more liberal than lets say the 5th Circuit, is not a runaway liberal court in any definition of the word. Not to mention who wrote the concurring opinion!

            • Actually, in reviewing the 9th vs the 6th… is interesting. The 6th is pretty liberal but not at all like the 9th, which with Texas Barristers anyway, is a joke. Everyone laughs at the 9th around here, anyway.

              Does not matter…it will end with the SCOTUS. That should prove interesting. I believe they will vote to hear it…and I think that the 6th will be reversed. I believe that the SCOTUS will rule 6-3 on unconstitutional…..but that is me.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                I’m pretty positive it will end up before SCOTUS too and decent chance of a 6-3 decision too — but holding it constitutional.

                My money would be on one of those rare times where there is no majority opinion; a majority will hold it constitutional but for varying reasons.

    • Naten53 says:

      I have been ignoring all the ‘rulings’ because it is going to come down to the supreme court no matter what.

    • Buck, I know you argue that it’s Constitutional-but do you really want there to be NO LIMIT on what the government can force you to do-because if this is the eventual ruling-it does create that ability and lets be honest they could already do too much per bogus precedents. Or do you disagree that it would make their power almost limitless?

      • Buck the Wala says:

        This law being constitutional does not mean that the power of the federal government is limitless. This law is constitutional because it is constitutional – based on the text of the constitution and prior precedent. There still exist clear limits.

        I am not saying that the Affordable Care Act is smart politics, or the right way to go, I’m merely saying it is a constitutional exercise of congressional authority. You don’t like the Act, that’s fine by me — write to your congressmen, run for office yourself, work towards having it repealed. The proper course of action is through the congressional and legislative process, not to keep trying to get a court to rule it unconstitutional (because it’s not).

        • I will never believe it is Constitutional-I am not a lawyer but I can see that this bill and many that have come before it, give, if not limitless-much more than a limited Federal government was ever meant to have. It goes against the heart of the document, the words can be twisted, and precedents can be stretched through the years. So we will never agree-so lets not argue about it’s constitutionality 🙂 I want to know if you are happy about this possible new ability to control us-to force someone to participate in commerce-something they have not done before-make you happy. Not are you for nationalized health care-or even this bill-are you happy with the new added power?

          • Buck the Wala says:

            I don’t see this as some new added power; since it is constitutional, it was always there.

            • Do you just not want to answer the question? Just say so and I will quite asking.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                You asked if I’m happy with this new power. I answered — its not a new power. I’ve long held that this was constitutional and fully within congressional authority.

                Regarding the clear limits to the commerce clause — briefly put, non-economic activity not substantially related to an economic regulation.

              • Hee Hee-You are definitely a lawyer-but never mind 🙂 please think about the word substantially and tell me why you believe this little word can’t be twisted to include anything the government wants to do. If I can’t grow food in my little garden and sell it or give it away without substantially effecting commerce-What in the world would be exempt?

              • Wait a minute-anything that involves money is suddenly an issue of state to state commerce.

              • I wonder-we have freedom of speech-but if I stood up and said that, oh I don’t know -eating french fries will make you fat-I wonder if the government could sensor my speech because my words could substantially affect commerce. I mean it would only be limiting speech, not taking it away completely.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                Of course not – your speech is non-economic activity.

              • Is it? Are you sure? Speech certainly effects commerce-look at all the commercials used to sell products. Time Buck, is IMO what you do not understand-what seems totally impossible to you right now-you will find out through the years of your life that they are totally possible. Government normally moves slowly but they gain power through crap just like this commerce deal and they use it to do more and more things that you feel confident in declaring will never happen -But they do-and then “We the People” have to sit there and realize that we helped them do it.

              • One more thing-a whole lot of people don’t believe Not buying a product is an activity at all, much less an economic activity-but it does affect commerce-which is in effect, if this passes the only criteria that will matter.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                The decision to not buy something is still an economic decision.

                And as the conservative judge wrote in his opinion (for all you strict constructionalists out there!) — the text of the constitution makes no distinction between activity and inactivity.

              • Probably felt the difference was obvious-What he actually said was that it doesn’t matter whether you do something or don’t do something-if it effects commerce-we have the power to control your actions. I will gladly define the new meaning of an economic decision-anything that you do or do not do that even slightly effects commerce-welcome to your new and more powerful government.

          • And what are these clear limits-when it comes to commerce-when they can tell us what we can grow on our own property and if this passes, force us to buy anything they can connect to commerce? I hope I’m not sounding like a smart aleck-some times I reread my posts and they come off that way-not my intention-well maybe a time or two but that wasn’t with you 🙂

  13. Obama is a dictator -I’m with you LOI-I simply cannot understand how anyone who has been paying attention the last 3 years could vote for him. I simply cannot imagine what he might do-with 4 more years when he doesn’t have to worry about re-election. At least a different President would be controlled a little by the fact that he would want to be re-elected in 4 years. The man hasn’t done hardly anything he promised, he pushed for health care in a form that nobody wants, he started another war,he spent trillions without any real long term help to the economy, he tries to destroy and control the media, he does bogus crap through executive order and different bureaucracies which is simply making law-he has no respect for our system or the rule of law—-he is a dictator. With 4 more years maybe he will become KING. And seriously, the dems. saying we need to cut spending out of one side of their mouths and out of the other they want another stimulus -does anyone out there believe we need another stimulus? or even if you think we do-do we need the same people running it-that threw most of the money away from the last what is it now 2 or 3. And does everyone remember the claims that the reps. had no ideas-and here we have the dems. who were in control and still have alot-and they have nothing-no budget, not even one last year- nothing -but a few contradictory words. Lets face it if you have no budget-you can just sorta do what you want to. Think about it-WHY didn’t the dems. pass a budget? Why isn’t Obama putting anything out there? I think it’s because he knows there is no way the people would go along with his ideas, which was proven by his last attempt -that the dems. wouldn’t even vote for. And he thinks it’s much more advantageous to criticize the republicans plan. But ask yourself is this a Leader -is this someone you want to trust with your future. Obama IMHO-has no respect for freedom, no respect for the ideal of “We the People” and has proven that he will use whatever underhanded process necessary to do what he wants-We the people’s opinions-Be damned. Again HE IS A DICTATOR!!!

    And I liked this article-and yes I know alot of people will disagree with the Tea Party comments 🙂 -but that really isn’t the real point of the article.

    6/29/2011 | Email John Stossel | Columnist’s Archive

    Most Americans used to call themselves Republican or Democrat. These days, more call themselves independent. What does that mean for American politics? A lot.

    “Independents are everywhere, and they’re becoming the largest single voting bloc in the country,” Reason magazine Editor Matt Welch says. ” (T)hey can determine every national election and every … election for state office. So independent voters — people who refuse to say, ‘I’m a Republican or I’m a Democrat’ — that’s where all the action is.”

    Welch and Editor in Chief Nick Gillespie just published a book on what to expect from this change: “Declaration of Independents: How Libertarian Politics Can Fix What’s Wrong With America.”

    The big change they see stems from independents’ refusal to be absorbed by any party. “Compare the tea party to the … Howard Dean antiwar movement,” Welch said. “Howard Dean became the chairman (of the) Democratic National Committee. But the tea party has kept an arm’s length and said, ‘No, we’re not going to be Republicans. … (W)e’re going to focus on … government spending, deficit, and debt, and that’s it.’ … And by maintaining that independence they have retained power.”

    “Independence in politics means that you can actually dictate some of the terms to our overlords,” Welch and Gillespie write, adding that we need independence not just in politics but from politics. Welch said, “When we look at the places where government either directly controls or heavily regulates things, like K-12 education, health care, retirement, things are going poorly.”

    It’s very different outside of government where — from culture to retail stores to the Internet — there’s been an explosion of choice. “(Y)ou were lucky … 20 years ago (if) you would see one eggplant in an exotic store,” Welch continued. “Now in the crappiest supermarket in America you’ll see four or five or six varieties of eggplant, plus all types of different things. … (W)hen you get independent from politics, things are going great because people can experiment, they can innovate. … We should squeeze down the (number of) places where we need a consensus to the smallest area possible, because all the interesting stuff happens outside of that.”

    Government is a zero-sum game: Someone wins, and someone loses, unlike in the market, where it’s win-win, where merchant and customer thank each other. “Anytime that you have the government expressing anything,” Welch continued, “it’s a battle of values. If a government is supporting an art show, people who find that art offensive have a legitimate claim. If a government buys … a new baseball stadium, well, my wife hates baseball, so how is that fair to her?”

    “Fifty-one percent of the people get to tell the other 49 percent what to do, how much to pay, where you have to show up,” Gillespie added. In the private sector, everybody gets to pick what he or she wants.

    “There are troubles and tradeoffs,” Gillespie said. “But … if somebody starts selling stuff you don’t like, you don’t hold a rally and you don’t try and get a bunch of people to vote to change it. You go to the next grocery store … or you build your own grocery store. It’s hard to do that with schools … with health care and … retirement.” Of course, as government makes more decisions for people and limits competition, it reduces our choices. It’s also given us horrible, unsustainable debt.

    But, surprisingly, the Reason folks are optimistic.

    “There are cases (of big government rollbacks),” Gillespie said. “New Zealand did this. Canada did this. The U.S. did this after World War II — dramatically ramped down the amount of spending, both in absolute terms and in relative terms as a percentage of economic activity. Political change happens.”

    But for now, the politicians continue to move us in the wrong direction. Last year, the feds alone added another 80,000 pages of rules. Despite talk of cuts, spending keeps growing. So does the debt.

    And yet maybe the optimists are right. Maybe the human spirit is so powerful it will overcome the stupidity of politics.

    I sure hope so.

    • VH, Great post! I do hope/think Obama has done more to kill off the two parties than anyone in recent history. The new media has shown the MSM to be propagandists.
      A big question is will he be able to rig the next election?

  14. Ray Hawkins
    Born today at 1246 pm, my daughter Alia Hope Hawkins (8 lbs 7 oz, 21.5 in). WooHoo! She’s cute as can be!

    Congrats to the Hawkins family~

  15. Oh Bob,

    Hospital apologises for making patients shake tamborine for nurse
    A hospital has apologised after forcing elderly patients to use a tamborine rather than an electric buzzer to attract attention in an emergency.
    Hospital apologises for making patients shake tamborine for nurse
    Cardiff Royal Infirmary is well-known for its long corridors and has even been used to film episodes of TV’s Dr Who

    9:41AM BST 21 Jun 2011

    The tambourine was put in a day room in a hospital wing after elderly patients feared it was too far for nurses to hear any cries for help.

    Watchdogs found the musical instrument was the only emergency call system for patients using the room in the West Wing of Cardiff Royal Infirmary.

    “It is ridiculous. These people are pensioners not members of the Monkees or Mick Jagger,” said one resident.

    “Where is the dignity in asking old and frail people to bash on a tambourine if they are in trouble? It makes the NHS look like a laughing stock.”

    He claimed that earlier there was a pair of maracas in the day room for patients to use – in case the tambourine was broken.

    Patients in the hospital’s West Wing complained they were “too scared” to use the day room in case staff do not hear their calls for help.

    The hospital is well-known for its long corridors and has even been used to film episodes of TV’s Dr Who.

    So staff put the tambourine for the old folk to “shake and bash” to attract staff in an emergency.

    Steve Allen, chief officer of Cardiff and Vale of Glamorgan Community Health Council, said: “This is totally inappropriate.

    “Patients shouldn’ t have to resort to shaking a tambourine to get a nurse’s assistance.”

    Ruth Walker, executive director of nursing for Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, yesterday apologised for the tambourine – and said a new emergency bell will be installed.

  16. Have no idea who I’m going to support in 2012, but thought this was one of the best articles written on Palin that I’ve seen (who of course, is not yet in the race):

    • I see this article covering more than just Palin-There are several I could vote for based solely on their value’s and their support of the American idea. Palin isn’t my first choice-but I would definitely vote for her in the general. And I haven’t written her off in the primary either-will wait and see how she does if she runs. I am I have to admit getting a little tired of the I might -I might not-make the decision and announce one way or the other.

      • I’ve been asked to explain why I would vote for a moron.

        I thought this was the highlight of the article … the only accurate statement the guy made. She is a moron.

        • If you liked her my red thru and thru/with a little anarchist thrown in friend -I would be forced to seriously re-evaluate her-to see where I messed up in my thinking 🙂

  17. Even if you don’t agree with everything in this article-who the heck is this woman to declare that the families of vets cannot have a religious funeral or say God at their family members funeral.

    June 29, 2011
    Houston Cemetery Bans the Word ‘God’ from Military Funerals
    Christine Biediger

    This morning, just five days before the celebration of our nation’s independence, I was shocked into wakefulness by a news item on Fox and Friends. It seems that the Houston National Cemetery has now begun banning “God” from military funerals.

    The director of the Houston VA National Cemetery, Arleen Ocasio, has ordered the burial teams to instruct that religious references, as well as prayer, are no longer to be included as part of the burial services. Requests for messages or prayers can be formally submitted for her approval, but the mention of “God” is not allowed.

    Ocasio has also ordered the closing of the cemetery chapel, which used to be available for grieving family and friends to gather and pray. The space is now used to conduct personnel meetings, and for storage.

    Perhaps Ocasio is not aware that this country was founded by people who willingly uprooted their families and risked their lives crossing a violent and deadly sea to reach these free shores. These God-fearing people carved a righteous civilization out of a wilderness and raised their children with the moral principles handed down from God. Great consideration was taken by our founders, when creating a constitution that would protect the individual liberties of all. They defined citizen rights in a divinely inspired and distinctly indestructible manner, because our rights come to us from God — not from man. Countless heroes have died defending the freedoms — religious and other — that were established as the foundation of the American way of life. How sacred is our religious freedom. How sacred is freedom, period.

    As a resident of Houston, I am profoundly ashamed that my wonderful city has become the epicenter of an issue so vile, so evil. It is one thing for a Christian valedictorian to have to fight for the right to mention God, or to pray, as part of her valedictory address — a right protected by the 1st Amendment, I might add. But this takes the fight to a whole new level.

    It is beyond my ability to comprehend what a family must feel when they bury a loved one who served voluntarily, honorably, and with great sacrifice, for the freedoms we take for granted every day of our lives. These people are keenly aware of the America-haters who live among us, who rely upon the very freedoms, earned with military bloodshed, to rain their hatred down upon our heads. Yet these military families stoically bear in their hearts the understanding that their loved ones’ sacrifice was for the rights and freedoms of all Americans, even those who don’t deserve them.

    If anyone in this country deserves the right to have prayers and religious speech, take place over their graves, it is those who have sacrificed the most. The ban on “God” at these funerals is an insult — not only to Christians, but, more importantly, to our military Christians. How very shameful it is that this attack comes from within the Veterans Administration itself.

    The words spoken at a funeral service are intended to bring comfort to those left behind. For a Christian, the most soothing and reassuring words come from our Creator. The prayers offer a salve on the open wounds of our souls. Our military families deserve this type of a farewell, if that is what they choose.

    This is a lesson to us, as we sit in the comfort of our freedoms. The left-wing war against the liberties that our military heroes have fought for is being waged here, at home. We must take up the fight to preserve what has been won for us, with a rain of e-mails, phone calls, complaints, and political action to root out those in our administration who would treat our warriors in such a vile way. Whether you believe in God or not, please do what you can to safeguard religious rights — you never know when a freedom you hold dear will be in jeopardy.

    Here is the contact information for the cemetery:

    Houston National Cemetery

    10410 Veterans Memorial Drive

    Houston, TX 77038

    Phone: (281) 447-8686

    FAX: (281) 447-0580

    • Not to worry VH…the word God will continue to be said and the religious preferences will continue to happen. I have just talked to the Honor Guard Commander for the State of Texas. He proclaimed that he did not care what the courts or an Obama appointed flunky says……theyt will do it anyway. This same person tried to ban the 21 gun salute as well. What else would you expect from an Obama appointee.

      I might add that our veterans group will be at her house for the next week planting AmericanFlags in her lawn.

    • Insult is right! I get more and more uptight at all this anti-God business! If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. Does it really hurt anyone..I mean personally hurt anyone.. to allow God in? NO! If you say it does, you’re full of shit! What is to be gained from making noise about it? I just don’t get it?

      Kudos to the veterans group for standing their ground.

  18. Remember, May 25, 2011 – Senate Votes Unanimously (97-0) Against Obama’s Budget … “The Senate voted unanimously on Wednesday to reject a $3.7 trillion budget plan …
    And then he made a speech, so as he continues to blame Repug’s, where’s his plan???
    Is it just in his head and we need to just give him four trillion and trust he’ll spend it well?

    Today, I’m proposing a more balanced approach to achieve $4 trillion in deficit reduction over twelve years. It’s an approach that borrows from the recommendations of the bipartisan Fiscal Commission I appointed last year, and builds on the roughly $1 trillion in deficit reduction I already proposed in my 2012 budget. It’s an approach that puts every kind of spending on the table, but one that protects the middle-class, our promise to seniors, and our investments in the future.

    The first step in our approach is to keep annual domestic spending low by building on the savings that both parties agreed to last week – a step that will save us about $750 billion over twelve years. We will make the tough cuts necessary to achieve these savings, including in programs I care about, but I will not sacrifice the core investments we need to grow and create jobs. We’ll invest in medical research and clean energy technology. We’ll invest in new roads and airports and broadband access. We will invest in education and job training. We will do what we need to compete and we will win the future.

  19. Terry Evans says:

    See, some folks on MSNBC know the truth…

    Mark Halperin, editor-at-large for Time, called President Obama “a dick” on Thursday on a popular MSNBC morning show and then quickly apologized.

    “I thought he was a dick yesterday,” Halperin, who also is a senior political analyst for MSNBC, said on Morning Joe, referring to the President’s conduct during his press conference.

    Read more:

    • Terry Evans says:

      Evidently my copy and paste skills are lacking this morning!

    • 🙂 I was going to post this earlier saying “here’s another WEINER in the White House!”

      All you lefties and redskies who keep saying Obama is a shoe in for ’12 might want to start rethinking your positions. He’s getting blasted from all sides..

      They’re beating the war drums for Bachmann/Perry 2012.. 🙂

    • Via TV Newser, we learn that MSNBC has “suspended indefinitely” its senior political analyst Mark Halperin for stating on Morning Joe that President Obama was “kind of a [male appendage].” This is not exactly what the “No Labels” crowd at Morning Joe were expecting. The official MSNBC statement:

      Mark Halperin’s comments this morning were completely inappropriate and unacceptable. We apologize to the President, The White House and all of our viewers. We strive for a high level of discourse and comments like these have no place on our air. Therefore, Mark will be suspended indefinitely from his role as an analyst.

      Ed Schultz drew a week for calling Laura Ingraham a “slut” (on his radio show), but this could be the end of Halperin’s tenure on MSNBC, much as the 2008 suspension of David Shuster for suggesting Hillary Clinton was “pimping out” daughter Chelsea marked his time there. In an attempt to keep a chance of returning to MSNBC, Halperin was confessional in his statement:

      I completely agree with everything in MSNBC’s statement about my remark. I believe that the step they are taking in response is totally appropriate. Again, I want to offer a heartfelt and profound apology to the President, to my MSNBC colleagues, and to the viewers. My remark was unacceptable, and I deeply regret it.

      Read more:

      • Darn-I really wish he hadn’t used the word-it was over the top-but what I want to know is why he thought it.

        • I was watching when it happened. He thought Obama was further instigating the Reps by playing to his base; that his posturing at the press conference yesterday wasn’t helping negotiations.

          • Thanks for the info. unfortunately now the only story will be about the stupid word instead of his point. I wonder if the media will ever realize that all the over the top remarks and just out right viciousness-makes the story about the attack, instead of the substance-that is if there is any substance-a good deal of the time just being vicious is the whole point. Course what do I know sometimes it’s apparent that people like the attack and could care less about the substance.

          • You’re admitting to watching MSNBC?

            You are even worse off than most of us have suspected!

            • Buck the Wala says:

              Hey, I was watching Morning Joe at the time too! Charlie’s not the only one watching MSNBC here.

      • I do not understand the outrage! We’ve been talking about a weiner in Washington for weeks on end and now someone uses a different term and it’s just awful?????

        Too bad, first time someone spoke the truth on that station (to their one live viewer – Charlie!), and he gets suspended. MSNBC – No Truth Allowed Here!

        • Have to agree with you that the outrage is more manufactured than real or tied more to ideology than any idea of civility(please note I said civil not PC) -but it doesn’t mean that this type of dialogue should be the norm. I just wish they would all stop all the stupid, uncivil attacks and just tell the facts or their opinions without all the over the top comments that are meant to inflame not inform.

        • But if you want to know my feelings about MSNBC-this was my first thought.

          Ahh MSNBC-doing the right thing occasionally, for all the wrong reasons-the hypocrisy is mind blowing.

        • Naten53 says:

          What was wrong about talking about hot dogs for weeks on end? What is wrong with calling people tea baggers for going to rallies? The MSM loves to use the play on words when they insult people, but when it isn’t a play on words and just an insult they draw the line.

  20. CBO can’t claim that Obamacare will reduce government costs
    From the WSJ’s Political Diary:

    a new Congressional Budget Office report on the long-term trend in the federal budget finds that the costs of Medicare and Medicaid will drive federal spending and debt to all-time highs in coming decades. In one scenario, federal health-care spending doubles over the next 25 years, to 11% of GDP in 2035 from 5.6% this year. In another scenario, the debt eclipses 100% of GDP by 2021 and 190% of GDP by 2035. That’s higher than where Greece is right now, and we see what the bond vigilantes are doing there.

    What is conspicuously missing from this report is the magical windfall from the new health law. CBO reports that it is “using the same growth rates that would have been applied in the absence of the legislation.” Now they tell us. Hence, Medicare alone is projected to nearly double over the next 25 years, from 3.7% of GDP to almost 7% by 2035.

    CBO warns that ObamaCare’s purported payment cuts to doctors and hospitals and the hoped-for reductions in the growth of the insurance subsidies would be “difficult to sustain over a long period.” . . .

  21. June 30, 2011
    Let’s have a Light Bulb Party!
    Mark J. Fitzgibbons, American Thinker

    Yesterday I was talking with a colleague about the federal ban on incandescent light bulbs. A light went off in my head (if you’ll excuse the term).

    Let’s have a Light Bulb Party!

    Wouldn’t it be grand if tens of thousands — hundreds of thousands, even — marched on the White House and the Capitol Building carrying “green energy” bulbs, the ones with mercury, and at a set time everyone threw the bulbs onto the lawns of these taxpayer-owned buildings.

    We could even march on the Environmental Protection Agency, do the same, but everyone at once would exhale spewing great amounts of CO2 towards the EPA building hoping agency employees would literally gasp at the fumes and the sight of such insolence and disobedience to the sovereign bureaucrats. Don’t forget to load up on the garlic.

    The only real question is whether participants in the Light Bulb Party would be arrested for littering or under some federal criminal law against organized toxic dumping. Oh, and throw in charges for protesting without a permit. We need the government’s permission to engage in civil disobedience, you know.

  22. Judy Sabatini says:

    It’s pretty bad when one has to go to court for just being allowed to say Jesus Christ at a funeral. All these people who are against the word GOD, what about IN GOD WE TRUST on money, or do they not use currency? Can’t say the GOD anymore without it being offensive to some. Get over it, get use to it, because I’m not going to change just because you don’t like the term GOD or JESUS CHRIST.

    • Amen Judy! The colonel and his buddies are on this..look above…..

      • Judy Sabatini says:

        HI Anita

        I read that & GOD BLESS him & his veterans group for doing what they do. Just irritates me to death how people can be so callous anymore & be so offended by the word GOD or JESUS CHRIST. Col. plant one for all of us here.

    • Buck the Wala says:

      Seems to me the issue here is far different from being able to say ‘god’ or ‘jesus christ’ at any given funeral ceremony as the comments on SUFA had me believe.

      Seems the real issue is whether it is ok for the federal government to lead a decidedly Christian group prayer ceremony for all Memorial Day.

      Pretty big distinction.

      • Mathius™ says:

        What a shock that I agree with Buck..

      • A ceremony for Memorial Day. Honoring fallen veterans as tradition and their beliefs, and their families beliefs dictate. Most families are not offended by prayers to God or Jesus. Most families request a priest, and have a say in how the ceremony is conducted. The real issue is the federal, or any government prohibiting someone from conducting a ceremony as they see fit. Isn’t that freedom of speech? If they have been doing this for decades, why does it have to be changed?

        • Buck the Wala says:

          Actually the issue is the federal government being the speaker in question. No one is talking about individual funerals as I understand it, where I completely agree the desires of the individual’s family should govern. Here, the government is putting together this ceremony to honor fallen veterans. All fallen veterns. Not just those who were Christian.

          • Buck, review the article, private event.
            “But Judge Lynn N. Hughes sided with Rainey, ruling that censorship and religious discrimination violate the First Amendment.”

            “The government does not have the right to write its peoples’ prayers,”

            A federal judge in Texas ruled Thursday that the government cannot prohibit a Houston preacher from saying “Jesus Christ” while delivering an invocation at an upcoming Memorial Day ceremony to be held at the national cemetery in the city.

            The Rev. Scott Rainey, the pastor at Living Word Church of the Nazerene, has given the invocation at the Houston National Cemetery for the last two years, each time ended the prayer with a reference to Jesus.

            But a month ago, Arleen Ocasio, the director of the cemetery, asked to review Rainey’s prayer before the ceremony this Monday, according to court papers. The pastor agreed, but four hours later, she responded with an email saying that “while it was very well written” she asked that it commemorate “veterans from all cultures and religious beliefs” — in other words, not just those who believe in Jesus.

            Rainey called Ocasio, and she told him that if he didn’t change the prayer, he would not be allowed to deliver the Memorial Day remarks, Rainey said in his lawsuit against Ocasio. But it was a private event, and court papers pointed out that the department only objected to the parts of the speech deemed too religious.

            But Judge Lynn N. Hughes sided with Rainey, ruling that censorship and religious discrimination violate the First Amendment.

            “The government does not have the right to write its peoples’ prayers,” Kelly Shackelford, the CEO of the Liberty Institute, said. Liberty Institute defends First Amendment rights and defended the pastor in this case. “This is a great Memorial Day victory.”

            • Buck the Wala says:

              Look, I don’t have all the facts and haven’t been able to read up on this any further than what has been written on SUFA.

              But, based on what I’m reading, the issue is (as you write): “saying “Jesus Christ” while delivering an invocation at an upcoming Memorial Day ceremony to be held at the national cemetery in the city.”

              From my understanding this is a ceremony to honor ALL fallen soldiers, not just those who believe in JC, but for all soldiers of all religions and faiths. As such, the government should not be in the business of giving a Christian prayer to commemorate these soldiers, choosing one religion over another. Assuming this is a private funeral ceremony, then I completely agree – the government has no business being involved and the family’s wishes govern.

      • You are wrong, Buck. Read further her purpose and do not rely on the media. We (veterans group) als
        met and talked to the lady (questionable) in Houston. It is all funerals no matter the religion or the reason. There is to be no religious implications at funeral services. Period. We (our Veterans group) are on top of this big time and will not rest until she is gone. It has nothing to do with Christianity….it has everything to do with religion….all of them. The MSM is making a big deal out of it but I know what the outcome will be. It is going to be done anyway…with the firing squads and flag folding…and with TAPS….that she also tried to do away with… is an agenda pure and simple and the wrong people are pissed. What is she or the government going to do? Exhume bodies….not allow funerals? Nope. It will be done without fanfare. The ceremonies will continue and so will religious services.

        And we will continue to place American flags on her lawn and car and hope the authorities and news media show up…..which they will not.

        • Buck the Wala says:

          As I said, I haven’t had time to read up on this at all. But to the extent this policy applies to individual burial and funeral services, I wholly agree — the family’s wishes govern and they should be allowed to do whatever they wish to honor their loved ones.

          That being said, to the extent this has been raised with respect to a Memorial Day remembrance ceremony to honor all fallen soldiers, I can also understand the concerns of non-Christians to having a decidedly Christian ceremony; in this context it should be nondenominational so as to honor all regardless of religious beliefs.

          • The way that it is usually done,,,is a non denominational service. I have folded many a flag and, as a Colonel, presented many a flag to widows. I have also taken part in numerous ceremonies on Veterans Day and Memorial Day and the 4th of July, not to mention the various birthdays of each of the military branches.

            In my career, I have never seen a Christian service at a Memorial Day Ceremony. I have seen where there are chaplains of all faiths in attendance. ( Christian, Jewish, Orthodox, Catholic ). I have seen Christian Chaplains give Jewish Ceremony and I have seen Jewish Chaplains give Christian Ceremony and even give Catholic last rites. I have even seen a Muslim Faith based Chaplain invoke the name of God and Jesus in a private ceremony where he is the only Chaplain available. That is the code among Chaplains.

            Usually, at the graveside, there is a short ceremony of faith. In the Honor Pavilions before grave side, I have seen the last rites and such by various faiths….but I have never seen a Memorial Day Service or Veterans Day Service dedicated to one faith or religion….of any type.

            This woman has a vendetta and we know it. We know how to handle this and we will.

    • Holder, of course, will do nothing. Wait….he will give guns to the Mexican Cartel and deny involvement and then use the excuse for gun control. That is what he will do.

  23. Here’s your “free market” in action …

    So long as you got the gelt, you’re free to do whatever you want.

    Nationalize the assholes and keep the money and jobs here.

    • “sigh”
      They are protected by the government and have been given special exemptions(see the article I wrote about them a while back). NOT free market. Also consider the US corporate tax rate(highest in the world) is driving business out of America.

      “Nationalize the assholes” And give control to a government that can’t even run a whore house? They would end up loosing money just like the postal service.

      • “Nationalize the assholes” And give control to a government that can’t even run a whore house? They would end up loosing money just like the postal service.

        Even this mess of a government did okay with GM … imagine one more concerned with workers than profit?

        Share, brother … don’t be so greedy … nobody works hard enough to earn more than the people who build your house, work oil rigs, paint bridges, teach, etc.

    • Amazon Drops 10,000 California Partners: Report

      By Sara Sjolin

      Published June 30, 2011

      NEW YORK — Inc. plans to cut ties with 10,000 California marketing affiliates to avoid collecting a new state tax, according to a report released late Wednesday. The Los Angeles Times said that the tax would force Amazon to collect California state sales tax on purchases made through the affiliates, as part of Gov. Jerry Brown’s plan to close a budget gap in 2011-2012. The affiliates use Amazon to sell their products and are paid either a percentage of the sales or get a commission from Amazon after each sale. Other states have required online retailers to collect sales taxes if they have online affiliates in the state, and Amazon has responded by dropping affiliates in those states. “This legislation is counterproductive and will not cause our retail business to collect sales tax for the state,” said Paul Misener, Amazon’s global-policy vice president, in a statement according to the Wall Street Journal.

      Read more:

    • And here’s your union in action, workers unite my @ss!

      Minority parents in New York have a message for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the United Federation of Teachers (UFT): you are hurting our children.

      In New York Monday, charter school parents staged another of several rallies to voice opposition to a lawsuit brought by the UFT and NAACP against the New York City Department of Education. If the organizations are successful with their suit, it would prevent enrollment or re-enrollment in 17 charter schools and stop the closure of 22 public schools.

      The UFT and NAACP’s decision to sue has roiled inner city parents who depend on charter schools to ensure their children get a good education.

      On Monday a slew of parents appeared before UFT headquarters to protest. Nearly a month earlier the NAACP felt their wrath when another estimated 3,000 people showed up at State Administrative Building in Harlem, carrying signs reading “NAACP don’t divide unite,” to protest the NAACP’s involvement.

      “I am the product of the public school system that allows 70 percent or more of its black men to not graduate from high school,” said Candido Brown, a charter school teacher at May’s rally. “I could barely believe my ears when I found out that the NAACP was trying to shut down some of the most successful schools serving black and brown children in our city. NAACP, do not take away this awesome education from our children.”

      Read more:

  24. To many graphs to post the article

    Ten Lessons From Federal Spending
    By Randall Hoven

    • Mathius™ says:

      Odd… looks to me like the biggest cuts were during Clinton’s terms.. you know, the tax and spend Democrat.

      Then George “fiscally conservative” Bush came along and it started to climb back up.

      That big spike there? Yea, that’s TARP. You know, from 2008. From October, 2008. A month before Obama was elected.

      Obama to present seems to be bumpy but generally downward, actually.

      It’s funny to me how the author switches from the President being responsible to Congress being responsible. Sure Bush was in office, but it’s the Democratic congress which gets the blame. Reagan gets all kinds of accolades, by the Democratic House at the time gets none.

      I find that odd. How about you?

      • Buck the Wala says:

        Move along, move along, nothing to see here but bad democratic presidents and good republican presidents…

      • Terry Evans says:

        Strange…I noticed something totally different…like when there is a Republican controlled Congress that graph seems to trend down, however, when the opposite is true, the graph reacts differently. Wow…you’re probably right though…nothing to see here, move along…

        • Mathius™ says:

          Congratulations, Terry, you’ve just won a homework assignment.

          Please create two graphs showing government spending as a percent of GDP from 1900-Present.

          In one, signify whether the President was a blue-shirt or a red-shirt – please shift this by one year to the right to encompass the party responsible for the present budget rather than just who was sitting in the big chair.

          In the other, signify whether congress was blue-blue, red-red.

          Please turn in your homework assignment to US Weapon by 7/10. I will be on vacation until then and have no interest in politics when on vacation.

  25. “Driving and Shaving Just Don’t Mix”. Everything they say about the truth…is absolutely true!

    “By now I’m sure that most of you have heard about the Florida woman who caused a two-vehicle wreck because she was shaving her bikini area while driving.
    “Guess that makes the time you drove with your elbows while eating a Whopper seem downright virtuous, doesn’t it?
    “Florida Highway Patrol troopers said the car Megan Barnes was driving crashed into the back of a pickup truck at about 45 mph. Her reaction time was slowed down because she was too busy grooming her hoohah to pay attention to the road. Oh, like that’s never happened to you?
    “Ms. Barnes told the investigating officer that she was on her way to a date and ‘wanted to be ready for the visit’.
    “Yes, she wanted to look her best. All over. Except, well, we’ve seen Ms. Barnes’ mug shot and she appears to have a face that would stop a clock… To be blunt, I don’t think a perfectly groomed love rug could possibly make that much difference.
    “There are so many ‘You might be a redneck if’ elements to the story of Megan Barnes, but my favorite is that, while performing this extremely personal grooming ritual, she asked her EX-HUSBAND to steer the car so she could concentrate. (‘Help me out, Buford, I’m gonna make it look like a LIGHTNING BOLT!’)
    “To no one’s particular surprise, the Highway Patrol quickly discovered that Ms. Barnes didn’t have a valid driver’s license. Oh, and the day before, she’d been convicted of DUI and driving with a suspended license. Oh, and her car had been seized and had no insurance or registration. Oh, and she was on probation. Oh, and SHE’S A FLIPPIN’ LUNATIC!
    “Albeit an impeccably groomed one.”

  26. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner has signaled to White House officials that he’s considering leaving the administration after President Barack Obama reaches an agreement with Congress to raise the national debt limit, according to three people familiar with the matter.

    Geithner hasn’t made a final decision and won’t do so until the debt ceiling issue has been resolved, according to one of the people. All spoke on condition of anonymity to talk about private discussions.

    The Treasury secretary has said the U.S. risks defaulting on its obligations if Congress doesn’t raise the $14.3 trillion debt ceiling by Aug. 2. The administration and congressional Republicans are at an impasse in negotiations to raise the limit, which also is tied to efforts to cut the nation’s long- term deficit.

    Moody’s Investors Service said on June 2 it expects to place the U.S. government’s Aaa credit rating under review for a possible downgrade if there’s no progress on the debt limit by mid-July. Fitch Ratings said June 21 it would place the U.S. on a negative rating watch if no action is taken by Aug. 2.

    An exit by Geithner would complete the turnover in Obama’s original economic team, with Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Austan Goolsbee scheduled to leave in early August to return to the University of Chicago.

    That would leave Obama with two key posts to fill as Republicans are seeking to turn the 2012 election into a referendum on Obama’s handling of the economy and the recovery is slowing. The unemployment rate rose to 9.1 percent in May, according to the Labor Department, and the U.S. economy grew at a 1.9 percent pace in the first quarter, according to Commerce Department figures released June 24.

    • (Reuters) – The White House effectively turned down an invitation by Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell for President Barack Obama to visit his members on Capitol Hill on Thursday to discuss raising the debt limit.

      White House press secretary Jay Carney, while not directly saying the invitation had been rejected, said Obama did not need to hear Republicans tell him what they would not support.

      That, Carney said, was “not a conversation worth having.”

  27. Yes, Republicans must feel very proud about now … after ditching the global economy under Bush, they now have the tools (votes) to further wreck whatever is in their greedy interests until, of course, they’re actually back in power and drilling the economic hole we’re in a little deeper … but they’ll always have those flags to wave, won’t they?

    Sweet Jesus, you people kill me. When BF makes sense, I know it’s time to have a drink … right now, if all we have to choose from are the two major parties, we may well be better off with either a dictator (me) or nothing at all … seriously, folks, arguing Rep v. Dem is pretty lame at this point.

  28. Bamadad says:
    • Just so you aren’t confused, Bamadad … what the guys on the left up top (matt, bob, etc.) are trying to point out (but it’s tough seeing things through blinders, I’m sure) … Bush was the first to bailout anyone (AIG) … Bush oversaw the mortgage crisis … Clinton had a relatively balanced budget … Obama inherited Bush’s mess and has made it worse … they’re both useless, make no mistake, but to point to try and demonize one over the other is pointless, brother. At least (if you’re of that ilk), go Libertarian … or socialist (if you’re of my ilk) … but Rep & Dem? What’s the point?

      • Mathius™ says:

        How would you feel about 8 more years of (Bill) Clinton?

        • Clinton’s 2nd term chased me from the Dems. I didn’t vote his second term. As much as I could care less about who he plugged (or who played his whistle), the fact remains that this country took a few too many hits (terrorism) while he was avoiding what he had to admit to. I know you’re all pure as the snow here and wouldn’t dream of screwing around on your wives but I wasn’t so pure and did screw around on three of my wives. Trust me, when you’re playing that game, you aren’t paying attention to much else (and all I was was a bookmaker). With what he had to lose (the friggin’ presidency), it’s a little bit worse. He wasn’t minding the store and was playing hide the cigar and we were getting hit overseas and at home. The other side of the coin was he was every bit as conservative as any Republican on way too many issues (for me). The ultimate politician, no doubt, but after Carter (whom I vigorously supported), I’d had it with “moving to the center”. The American worker has been shafted a little worse every single year since Carter … now with this clown (Obama), it’s become the stuff revolutions should be made of.

          So, Clinton? No thanks. No more from either major party. They’re owned.

          • One nice thing about the Carter Administration… I remember taking out jumbo CD’s at 10 and 11 percent interest rates. We made a fortune off Carter with his inflationary premise. People with cash made a bundle….people living from day to day got killed.

      • “Bush oversaw the mortgage crisis”

        Charlie…….you know this is wrong. Totally wrong.

        • Colonel, good morning … but are you kidding me? Bush wasn’t responsible for the mortgage crisis? You’re actually going to blame it on Clinton (8 years earlier)? Or was it devine intervention? Come on, Colonel, that’s grasping desperately at straws.

          • Not at all….Iam going further back than Clinton. I will point out to you that the Bush administration did point out the problems and warned two years in advance that the crises was coming with the way Fannie Mae and Freddie MAc were handling things. Just like I am not goint to blame everything on Obama but I will blame the Democratic controlled Congress. I will blame Barney Frank and Nancy Pelosi and Christopher Dodd for the mortgage crises. It could have been stopped easilyb and they were forwarned by the Bush Administration……..however, the beginning of the crises was during the Carter Administration.

            • By the way….I am not a Clinton fan at all….but he did see theway things are in reality in his second term. He did not do too badly although, I do remember having training exercises at Fort Hood called TEWT’s. (Training Exercise Without Troops). This happened during his administration when I was a mere Battalion Commander of a tank Battalion. We did not have deisel fuel to run tactics…so, we did manuevers in jeeps. We did not have ammunition to train machine gunners…so we trained them with………….22’s. I remember the old saying while in the jeeps……clankity clank…I am a tank…..and the gunner in the back seat would go “BOOM”. When we went to Bosnia, I remember well that a combat load in a tank was 64 rounds and we had 10. No fifty cal ammo at all…..and side arms with one clip. And we were supposed to keep the peace and prevent genocide……but what the hell…..we watched well from the side lines and then burried the dead before the vultures came……until the temps droppedto zero, then the groundbecamethe morgue until we could get to them…..

              But Barney Frank and Chris Dodd got all he moneythey wanted for Fannie MAe and Freddie MAc, made bad loans and passed them off.

          • Oh, sorry, sir…..Good morning back.


    This short report is required reading for anyone who really wants to understand what actually happened in the 2000 Florida Presidential election.

    The analysis leaves exactly zero room for the possibility for anything other than massive vote fraud. As’s Carl Limbacher reported: “Robert is a nuclear engineer with a track record for analyzing and correcting trends, errors and mistakes in heavy construction projects (ships, power plants, nuclear reactors, military and aerospace vehicles, etc.) for more than twenty years, put forth a compelling case that the 19,120 presidential race ballots at issue in Palm Beach County were ‘destroyed by deliberate double-punching ballots with a “second punch” for Al Gore or Pat Buchanan.'” The results are shockingly clear evidence of vote fraud:

    Only Palm Beach County, Florida voters seem incapable of understanding and using this style of ballot (butterfly ballot — chosen by local Democrats).
    Only in Palm Beach, FL were 15,000 ballots “invalidated” (for double-punched ballots) in the 1996 Presidential election. (Past history of vote fraud in 1996.)
    Only in Palm Beach (and in only the most heavily Democratic precincts) were 19,120 ballots rejected in 2000 for double-punching.
    Only in Palm Beach did this “double-punch” error happen only in the Gore-Bush-Buchanan selections for President.
    Only in Palm Beach has the news media complained about “massive” ballot confusion.
    Only in Palm Beach did Gore gain 750 votes in a recount.
    Only in Palm Beach County that more than 20% of the registered Republicans “forgot” to vote for their party’s presidential candidate.
    Only in Palm Beach did Bush receive less than 65% of the registered Republican voters.
    Only in Palm Beach did Buchanan get less than half of the votes he received before in 1996.

    Cook provides the probable means by which a Democrat conspirator could have disenfranchised thousands of voters and destroyed their “punch ballot cards”:

    Stamping 45,000 ballots with a tool (or other device) through the Gore slot gives: Every Gore vote = still a valid Gore vote. (No change in the total, no change in the recount.) Every Bush, Buchanan, Workers Party, and Libertarian Party ballot IS IMMEDIATELY INVALID. They will be thrown out because they have two votes. They NEVER were counted in the first place = no change in the recount. The double-punch occurs ONLY in the presidential race, and no position on the ballot is disturbed. All other races are correctly counted. EVERY ballot that had no vote (a “protest vote” against both major candidates) becomes a Gore vote. All other races on the ballot are not disturbed, and are correctly counted.

    In this way, stacks of ballots cards (valid votes) were destroyed in a matter a few fevered post election moments. This simple vote fraud technique explains all the ridiculously improbable statistical outliers of that election. There simply is no other plausible mathematical explanation.

    As the 2012 election looms, concerned voters should recall the nationwide voter registration frauds of ACORN, Al Franken’s brazenly stolen Minnesota Senate election, and George Soros’ SOS Project which seeks to install crony Secretaries of State to “oversee” how close elections are “decided.” The massive vote fraud in Florida in 2000 ought to concern every voter in every state. If the Democrat party so brazenly tried to steal Florida’s 2000 election, chances are very good that they will try to steal other “close” elections in 2012.

    Recall too that the groundwork is already being laid for vote fraud in 2012. Donna Brazile is already complaining about nonexistent “voter disenfranchisement” (just as the Democrats did in 2000). Editorials are being written and lawsuits are being filed in an attempt to thwart any meaningful measures to eliminate vote fraud.

  30. “Keep in mind,” President Obama cautioned reporters halfway through his hour-long news conference Wednesday morning, “that the business community is always complaining about regulations. When unemployment is at 3 percent and they’re making record profits, they’re going to still complain about regulations because, frankly, they want to be able to do whatever they think is going to maximize their profits.”

    No reporters followed up on these remarks – in particular to question whether the nation’s chief executive really meant to suggest that the nation’s corporate chief executives, if unchecked by government, would eschew all ethical scruple to “do whatever they think is going to maximize their profits.”

    In the same set of remarks, Obama credited his administration with having undertaken an “unprecedented” effort to review the country’s regulatory structure – including both proposed rules and those “already on the books” – to determine, as the president put it, whether there is “a tangle of regulations out there that are preventing businesses from growing and expanding as quickly as they should.”

    A bit later, while discussing Boeing’s battle with the National Labor Relations Board over the site of a new plant, Obama said he hopes “everybody steps back for a second and says, look, if jobs are being created here in the United States, let’s make sure that we’re encouraging that…at a time when we’re competing against Germany and China and other countries that want to sell goods all around the world.”

    Dan Danner, president and chief executive officer of the National Federation of Independent Business, agreed on the need to develop federal policies in a way that enables America to compete with foreign economies. “There’s no question today that almost every business is global,” Danner told Fox News. “So the whole question about outsourcing is: Where’s the best business environment? I’m sure that corporations don’t sit around…and think, ‘Where can we make our investments in other parts of the world, just because we want to?’ It’s all about the business environment, the taxes and regulations.”

    Yet in 2010 – and for the fifth consecutive year – the World Bank’s annual “Doing Business” survey, which ranks 183 economies on key aspects of regulation for domestic firms, found Singapore to be the world’s friendliest regulatory environment, followed by Hong Kong, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States. This fifth-place ranking represented a decline for the U.S., which in the 2009 survey ranked third – and it showed America bucking a worldwide trend.

    That trend has seen 85 percent of the world’s economies take steps over the last five years to make it easier for local entrepreneurs to operate. Yet separate studies by the World Bank and the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor both concluded that American entrepreneurs faced more start-up red tape in 2007 than they did in 2003.

    Add to that the tens of thousands of pages of regulations still being written as a consequence of the Obama administration’s enactment of legislative reforms to the health care and financial service sectors, and the American regulatory structure would appear only to be growing exponentially.

    “If you had asked me this ten years ago, I would’ve told you, ‘America is the place to start a business,’” said Veronique de Rugy, an economist at George Mason University’s Mercatus Center. “It’s not true anymore today. I think the gap, basically, between the European countries and America has shrunk dramatically in the last ten years, and in particular in the last three years. I cannot tell you how badly we will fare once the financial regulation that was passed last year will all have been implemented.”

    Read more:

  31. Mathius™ says:
  32. Okay, then it’s settled. George Bush was the greatest president in our history. He got bin laden … he avoided the financial crisis by warning all of us how dopey we were (we should’ve just listened to him when he started two wars that cost all that money and didn’t raise taxes to support it) … he is responsible for saving the economy today by bailing out AIG and even BF claimed he was an economic genius …

    No, you guys aren’t delusional … a little friggin’ crazy maybe, but not delusional … it was Barney Frank’s fault!

    You’re still playing Rep vs. Dem as if it makes a bit of difference. LOI doesn’t like unions. Nationalize everything and you won’t have to deal with them anymore.

    Goldman Sachs is proud to be an American Company … and while you economic geniuses point to “regulations” as the reason Goldman is moving jobs to Southeast Asia, Brazil and India, you’re forgetting you just bailed them out. How INSANE is that?

    So, what, we (american workers) should take what Goldman is willing to pay workers in India?

    Oy vey … you’re all nuts.

    • Charlie loves his shackles! Oy vey!

    • Bush: ‘Miss Me Yet?’ — Dennis Kucinich: ‘Yes’

      **Written by Doug Powers

      To say that Kucinich longs for the days of George W. Bush would be a wild over statement — after all, Kucinich wanted to impeach him — but maybe it’s not a stretch to say Dennis appreciated that Bush was more constitutionally considerate than the current president on the issue of congressional authorization for a conflict:

      Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) on Thursday ripped President Obama while giving credit to former President George W. Bush for asking Congress to authorize the war in Iraq.

      The anti-war Democrat, criticizing Obama’s handling of the conflict in Libya, noted that Bush formally consulted Congress on the Iraq war in 2002.

      “President Bush came to Congress…President Obama doesn’t feel like he needs to come to Congress,” Kucinich said during an interview on C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal” program. Kucinich pointed out he was strongly opposed to the Iraq war.

      Along with other lawmakers, Kucinich this week filed a lawsuit against the Obama administration on the Libyan conflict, claiming the president violated the law by not securing congressional approval.

      If he’s not careful, one of these mornings Dennis might wake up next to an olive pit.

      • I think it has a lot more to do with Obama being more Republican than Bush was … which is why for all your beefs about Obama, you’re probably closet Obama lovers …

  33. These peta people are really nuts but I posted this-because it’s funny 🙂

  34. Judy Sabatini says:
    • He’s right … absurd as it is, so long as the GOP has NOBODY to run against him (and you don’t), Fredo will be President for 4 more years. The GOP field is as weak as it gets …

      • Judy Sabatini says:

        Not if we can help it Charlie.

        • Judy, on a good day, there are 10-15 people here (saying the same things over and over) … I wish you luck (because none of these clowns deserve a second chance) but I doubt you’ll be successful. The GOP right now is more dead than it was immediately after Bush … there’s no way what they have now can beat Fredo.

        • And where is the outrage? Hell, where is any talk at all? The only reason they get on Bachman and Palin etc. is because they are skeert. They are skeert those ladies will be the next President so they use any chance they can to demean them.

          • Buck the Wala says:

            Not so sure about being ‘skeert’, but let me tell ya, I’m damn terrified of either one of those crazies being in charge of anything, let alone the Presidency!


            • Mathius™ says:

              Do we have a stronger word? I think I need a stronger word in order to cope with that idea.

              And a strong drink, too.


              PS: you see her (Bachmann’s) husband talking about homosexuals saying that they need to be disciplined? Apparently he runs a “clinic” where they de-gay people. Lovely.

              • Buck the Wala says:

                Yup, came across that the other day actually. Don’t even know where to begin…


                Alright, I’m about out for the long weekend — have a great 4th SUFAites!

      • TexasChem says:

        @ Charlie,

        Perhaps it is my geographical location in the nation (Southeast Texas, but; I doubt it. I believe it a nation-wide trend.) I do not personally know any Obama supporters.Not one.Zero.Nada. HOWEVER, I do know several that voted for Obama that have since did an about face and regret voting for him. Obama has zero chance of being elected again in my opinion. That is unless our elections are actually rigged…

  35. On Tuesday I attended the premiere of Stephen Bannon’s “The Undefeated” in Pella, Iowa. I had provided introductory comments before a prior screening of the film in New York City, and had seen a rough cut a few weeks before that. The final product is outstanding. And my experience in Iowa left me with several impressions worth noting.

    First off, there’s something extraordinary about the communication between Todd and Sarah. There’s a palpable trust and commitment, a mutual support system that grounds them and propels them forward. They are a genuine team.

    Much like when I spoke at a Conservatives4Palin meet-up in November of 2010, I walked away from Iowa this week with the sentiment that Palin supporters are a force to be reckoned with. There’s something unique about their support, and it took me some time to put my finger on it. The truth is actually quite simple — they believe her. They believe that she will do what she says she’s going to do. They trust in her word. So it’s not just about supporting her record, policies and vision for America. It’s also about a genuine trust in the woman behind that record, those policies and that vision. Simply put, I’ve found Palin supporters to be primarily driven by their belief in her personal character. That is incredibly powerful — and incredibly rare — in the world of politics.

    Read more:

  36. Union curbs rescue a Wisconsin school district
    By: Byron York | Chief Political Correspondent Follow Him @ByronYork | 06/30/11 8:05 PM

    “This is a disaster,” said Mark Miller, the Wisconsin Senate Democratic leader, in February after Republican Gov. Scott Walker proposed a budget bill that would curtail the collective bargaining powers of some public employees. Miller predicted catastrophe if the bill were to become law — a charge repeated thousands of times by his fellow Democrats, union officials, and protesters in the streets.

    Now the bill is law, and we have some very early evidence of how it is working. And for one beleaguered Wisconsin school district, it’s a godsend, not a disaster.

    The Kaukauna School District, in the Fox River Valley of Wisconsin near Appleton, has about 4,200 students and about 400 employees. It has struggled in recent times and this year faced a deficit of $400,000. But after the law went into effect, at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, school officials put in place new policies they estimate will turn that $400,000 deficit into a $1.5 million surplus. And it’s all because of the very provisions that union leaders predicted would be disastrous.

    In the past, teachers and other staff at Kaukauna were required to pay 10 percent of the cost of their health insurance coverage and none of their pension costs. Now, they’ll pay 12.6 percent of the cost of their coverage (still well below rates in much of the private sector) and also contribute 5.8 percent of salary to their pensions. The changes will save the school board an estimated $1.2 million this year, according to board President Todd Arnoldussen.

    Of course, Wisconsin unions had offered to make benefit concessions during the budget fight. Wouldn’t Kaukauna’s money problems have been solved if Walker had just accepted those concessions and not demanded cutbacks in collective bargaining powers?

    “The monetary part of it is not the entire issue,” says Arnoldussen, a political independent who won a spot on the board in a nonpartisan election. Indeed, some of the most important improvements in Kaukauna’s outlook are because of the new limits on collective bargaining.

    In the past, Kaukauna’s agreement with the teachers union required the school district to purchase health insurance coverage from something called WEA Trust — a company created by the Wisconsin teachers union. “It was in the collective bargaining agreement that we could only negotiate with them,” says Arnoldussen. “Well, you know what happens when you can only negotiate with one vendor.” This year, WEA Trust told Kaukauna that it would face a significant increase in premiums.

    Now, the collective bargaining agreement is gone, and the school district is free to shop around for coverage. And all of a sudden, WEA Trust has changed its position. “With these changes, the schools could go out for bids, and lo and behold, WEA Trust said, ‘We can match the lowest bid,'” says Republican state Rep. Jim Steineke, who represents the area and supports the Walker changes. At least for the moment, Kaukauna is staying with WEA Trust, but saving substantial amounts of money.

    Then there are work rules. “In the collective bargaining agreement, high school teachers only had to teach five periods a day, out of seven,” says Arnoldussen. “Now, they’re going to teach six.” In addition, the collective bargaining agreement specified that teachers had to be in the school 37 1/2 hours a week. Now, it will be 40 hours.

    The changes mean Kaukauna can reduce the size of its classes — from 31 students to 26 students in high school and from 26 students to 23 students in elementary school. In addition, there will be more teacher time for one-on-one sessions with troubled students. Those changes would not have been possible without the much-maligned changes in collective bargaining.

    Teachers’ salaries will stay “relatively the same,” Arnoldussen says, except for higher pension and health care payments. (The top salary is around $80,000 per year, with about $35,000 in additional benefits, for 184 days of work per year — summers off.) Finally, the money saved will be used to hire a few more teachers and institute merit pay.

    It is impossible to overstate how bitter and ugly the Wisconsin fight has been, and that bitterness and ugliness continues to this day with efforts to recall senators and an unseemly battle inside the state Supreme Court. But the new law is now a reality, and Gov. Walker recently told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that the measure will gain acceptance “with every day, week and month that goes by that the world doesn’t fall apart.”

    In the Kaukauna schools, the world is not only not falling apart — it’s getting better.

    Read more at the Washington Examiner:

  37. Goodbye Glenn Beck!! Some of us are going to miss you. I for one will miss your fortune telling about the Government and then watching it come true.

    I wish you well in ALL your new endeavors. Whether the rest on here do or not. 😉

  38. Politically Incorrect Facts about the Texas Revolution

    If you listen to guys like Howard Zinn and others of the “anti-America” crowd, you’ll hear a lot of complaining about America’s “imperialist” ambitions and the way the American government and society have horribly treated various (usually) non-white groups, stolen their land, etc. The 19th-century notions of American expansionism and “Manifest Destiny” — i.e., that the United States (particularly white people) were meant (perhaps divinely so) to spread across North America — comes up a lot. Understand, I’m not dismissing it or saying that it was all good, either. In fact, anyone serious about history has to admit that certain people took that idea a little too far — unscrupulously so. There were indeed some nasty people who did some nasty things; bad policies and bad decisions were made; in some cases, lives were lost. But, I’m afraid that revisionists of recent decades have twisted things to make it sound a lot worse, attribute sinister motives where there often were none, and portray American settlers moving westward as greedy, racist land-grabbers and generally as bad eggs. That’s my sense of it, anyway.

    La Raza protest signThis year marks the 175th anniversary of the Texas Revolution, so you will probably hear/read some “progressive”-type journalists and historians making a lot of hoo-ha about it. The evils of the proponents of “Manifest Destiny” will be decried and some (e.g., National Council of La Raza) will continue their screeds of having their land stolen out from under them.

    Well, I’ve got a few facts to help counter some of the claims and nullify the anti-expansionist rants about the origins of the Republic (and, later, State) of Texas:

    1. Once Mexico gained its independence from Spain in 1821, it soon became one of the most poorly-governed countries in the world: corrupt, disorganized, tyrannical, faction-ridden, continually on the verge of civil war, arrogant and completely inept in its dealings with other nations. It didn’t help that the new nation was basically bankrupt and couldn’t defend its states/territories against hostile Indian tribes.

    2. By 1836 most of the inhabitants of the Mexican state of Texas — known as “Texians” — were Anglo-American settlers, not Hispanics. This was due to liberal Mexican immigration law and empresarial grants for settlement. Yes, the Mexican government invited non-Mexicans in. (The General Colonization Law of 1824 made all heads of household who were citizens of, or immigrants to, Mexico eligible to claim land. However, in 1830 President Bustamante instituted a prohibition against further immigration to Texas from the U.S. Property tax exemptions were also rescinded and tariffs on U.S. goods were increased.)

    3. Disillusionment and discontentment grew among Texas’ inhabitants. With the support of most of the native-born Hispanic inhabitants, the Texians then revolted against the corrupt, tyrannical, often brutal regime of General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna.

    4. Texas was not alone in revolting against the central government in Mexico City during the 1830s. So did California (repeatedly), Oaxaca, Jalisco, Zacatecas, Michoacan, San Luis Potosi, Queretaro, Durango, Guanajuato and Yucatan. Revolts broke out across the entire country (not just Texas), led by Hispanics and Anglos alike. Unfortunately, only the Texan revolt was successful.

    5. The U.S. government provided no assistance to the revolutionaries in Texas, and — at least, initially — refused to annex the province once it achieved its independence from Mexico. The only assistance the Texians received was from individual volunteers (e.g., Davy Crockett and his Tennesseans).

    6. Santa Anna was defeated by Sam Houston (who was heavily outnumbered) at the Battle of San Jacinto and signed the Treaties of Velasco, conceding Texas’ independence and recognizing the Rio Grande as the boundary between the new Republic of Texas and Mexico. Santa Anna also pledged to secure ratification of the treaty by the Mexican legislature, but he failed to keep this promise.

    7. For the next ten years the government of Mexico refused to recognize the existence of the independent Republic of Texas, claiming that it remained Mexican territory. Mexico simultaneously made the contradictory claim that the southern border of Texas was at the Nueces River, rather than the Rio Grande. It failed to support or defend either of these claims, thereby conceding the de facto existence of the Republic of Texas with its southern border at the Rio Grande.

    Flag of the Republick of Texas
    Flag of the Republic of Texas

    8. The fact that Mexico refused to ratify the treaty or that the border of the former Mexican state of Texas had been at the Nueces River could be argued to be rather beside the point. A nation’s independence is confirmed by its ability to defend that independence against attempts by another nation to extinguish it, which Texas did from 1836 to 1845. Put another way, the right to territory is not established by a treaty only, but by occupancy, and the ability to hold the territory claimed against attempts by others to seize it, as Texas did from 1836 to 1845.

    Mexico made at least two attempts to reoccupy the land between the Rio Grande and the Nueces and was driven back across the Rio Grande on each occasion, thus confirming Texas’ de facto right to the area. For ten years Mexico failed to enforce its claims either to the territory between the Rio Grande and the Nueces rivers or to the whole of Texas.

    So, similar to the American Revolution, the inhabitants of Texas rose up against an abusive government, declaring their independence and (against all odds) fighting to keep it. No “stolen” property. I think they earned it.

  39. Politically Incorrect Facts about the Mexican-American War

    The other day I posted about the Texas Revolution of 1836, giving some facts to counter the position that America’s early settlers were just a bunch of greedy, unscrupulous, white land-grabbers who “stole” their land from the Mexicans (and Native Americans). On the contrary, the Anglos had mostly been invited in by the Mexican government (which needed more citizens who could form militias to fight off hostile Indians) and allowed to make land claims. When the “Anglo” population revolted against the corrupt and often brutal Mexican government, the local Hispanics largely supported them.

    sign with La Raza positionAfter winning its independence, Texas spent the next decade fending off attacks from Mexico, which refused to acknowledge that independence and abide by the terms of the treaty signed by President Santa Anna. Other nations recognized Texas’ sovereignty and advised Mexico not to try to take it back. Further, Mexico threatened to go to war with the United States, if the U.S. annexed Texas, which it did on Dec. 29, 1845. Between the annexation and other matters (including American presence in California and the Bear Flag Revolt), relations between the U.S. and Mexico continued to sour. After a more nationalistic administration came into power in Mexico City, things escalated and eventually led to a declaration of war in the Spring of 1846.

    Thus, this year is also the 165th anniversary of the start of the Mexican-American War (1846-1848). As I said in my previous post about the Texas Revolution, you will likely hear/read various anti-American and Hispanic-centric claims about the evils of American expansionism and Manifest Destiny. Since this is a sequel to that post, I would like to continue with a few more politically incorrect facts about the circumstances of the Mexican-American War. As such, I’ll also continue the numbering from where I left off:

    9. In 1845 Mexico had the largest army on the North American continent — 30,000+ professional soldiers commanded by the “Napoleon of the West” (i.e., Santa Anna) and a cadre of professionally trained officers, including a number of expatriate European commanders.

    The U.S. Army in 1845 consisted of approximately 5,000 professional soldiers, plus state militias, commanded by self-taught generals (many left over from the War of 1812). They were joined by a small contingent of untested graduates from the new Military Academy at West Point. Throughout the Mexican War, these West Pointers served as junior officers, often under the command of political generals. (It was not until the American Civil War that they rose to command the armies of the North and South.)

    10. As indicated and contrary to the assertions of some, it was the Mexican army that had superior numbers — especially, re trained soldiers & officers. Many of those looking on from both Europe and Latin America expected the Mexican professional army to summarily route the Americans. Some say that the Mexican army was ill-equipped, ill-trained and lacked discipline and morale. Perhaps, but this was also true (except for the low morale) of the militia who constituted the bulk of the American army.

    11. The territory between the Rio Grande and the Nueces rivers was at best disputed territory. As argued in my previous post, the Republic of Texas had successfully established its de facto authority over the area — a claim which passed on to the U.S. when it annexed Texas in 1845.

    12. Both Mexican and American troops entered the disputed territory in 1846. The presence of U.S. forces in the area between the Nueces and the Rio Grande did not constitute an “invasion of Mexico” or a violation of Mexican sovereignty, which Mexico had failed to re-establish in the area for ten years. In fact, the presence of Mexican troops north of the Rio Grande could just as easily be considered an invasion of American territory by right of inheritance from the former Republic of Texas.

    13. After Texas was annexed by the U.S., General Mariano Parades seized power in Mexico City, declaring his intention of driving the Americans out of Texas. He mobilized the Mexican army and ordered an attack on American troops along the Rio Grande. On April 23, 1846, he issued a Declaration of War against the United States.

    14. A superior force of Mexican troops ambushed a much smaller patrol of American cavalry within the disputed territory on April 25. Thus, the war was first declared and the first shots fired by Mexico, just as President Polk claimed. The U.S. did not declare war on Mexico until May 13, after Mexican forces had attacked American troops north of the Rio Grande.

    15. In less than eighteen months, the U.S. Army (mostly amateurs, remember) defeated a larger Mexican army led by a body of professionally trained officers.

    16. Many of the Hispanic inhabitants of New Mexico and California openly supported the Americans during the war. In fact, some of their leaders even urged them to do so, including General Mariano Vallejo, Governor of California.

    Mexican-American War map17. When the U.S. annexed the Republic of Texas in 1845, it was at Texas’ request — as it had every right to do. The Polk administration had also sought to purchase California and New Mexico prior to the outbreak of hostilities on the Rio Grande. Mexico refused to sell, as a matter of national honor.

    18. Having initiated the war and suffered a humiliating defeat at the hands of the Americans, Mexico ceded New Mexico and California to the U.S. in return for $15 million, plus the cancellation of $3.25 million in debts owed by Mexico to U.S. citizens. By the time the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was signed (1848), the U.S. in effect purchased these territories even after it had already conquered them. (This is a prime example of America’s benevolence and graciousness with those whom she defeats, which the “America sucks” crowd tends to overlook.) In accordance with the common practices of the day, the U.S. could have simply annexed the lands it chose by right of conquest and required Mexico to pay an indemnity as well, such as the Germans did to France at the conclusion of the Franco-Prussian War of 1871.

    Today’s activists still complain about the ceding of territory that the Mexican government was “forced” to do. But, that is the nature of such a war and the rights of the winning side over the vanquished. Yet, under the treaty, Mexican citizens living in the ceded territories had the freedom to a) return to Mexico, b) remain where they were and retain their Mexican citizenship, or c) become American citizens. From what I understand, the majority eventually chose “c”.

    Yet again, the underdog won against a larger and recalcitrant enemy (who was the aggressor, remember), then gave the defeated foe very gracious terms in the treaty. America both conquered the land in question under the rules of war and effectively purchased it. Nothing was “stolen”. Got it?

    History buffs-what say you?

  40. D’Souza on Slavery

    The issue of slavery, in particular that which existed in early America, is a sore subject. A shameful shadow is cast over American history because of its part in continuing this abominable practice. The Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s/60s was made necessary because of the nation’s failure to fully integrate non-whites into society even after the Civil War and Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation. But, unfortunately, Americans are often only taught select facts about this history, such that America gets an undue amount of attention and is reviled for something that it only played a relatively small part in. Dinesh D’Souza, India-born American and well-known author, made a few comments on the topic in his book What’s So Great about America?:

    “Slavery has existed in all known civilizations. In his study Slavery and Social Death, the West Indian sociologist Orlando Patterson writes, ‘Slavery has existed from the dawn of human history, in the most primitive of human societies and in the most civilized. There is no region on earth that has not at some time harbored the institution.’ A brief survey of the nations of the world confirms this. The Sumerians and Babylonians practiced slavery, as did the ancient Egyptians. The Chinese, the Indians, and the Arabs all had slaves. Slavery was widespread in Greece and Rome, and also in sub-Saharan Africa. American Indians practiced slavery long before Columbus set one foot on this continent.

    If slavery is not distinctively Western, what is? The movement to end slavery! Abolition is an exclusively Western institution. The historian J.M. Roberts writes, ‘No civilization once dependent on slavery has ever been able to eradicate it, except the Western.’ Of course, slaves in every society don’t want to be slaves. The history of slavery is full of incidents of runaways, slave revolts, and so on. But typically slaves were captured in warfare, and if they got away they were perfectly happy to take other people as slaves.”

    So, we begin to see that, while early America is not to be excused for its participation in slavery, neither should it be singled out.

    “Never in the history of the world, outside of the West, has a group of people eligible to be slave owners mobilized against the institution of slavery. This distinctive Western attitude is reflected by Abraham Lincoln: ‘As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master.’ Lincoln doesn’t want to be a slave — that’s not surprising — but he doesn’t want to be a master either. He and many other people were willing to expend considerable treasure, and ultimately blood, to get rid of slavery not for themselves, but for other people. The uniqueness of this Western approach is confirmed by the little-known fact that African chiefs, who profited from the slave trade, sent delegations to the West to protest the abolition of slavery. And it is important to realize that the slaves were not in a position to secure freedom for themselves. The descendants of African slaves owe their freedom to the exertions of white strangers, not to the people of Africa who betrayed them and sold them.”

    A bold statement? Perhaps. But, a proper perspective and attitude can only be had when informed by the facts — in this case, historically verifiable facts.

    • from John Lott

      The Double-Double standard on Dealing with Misstatements by Candidates
      Could one imagine Chris Wallace asking Obama about being a flake or George Stephanopoulos asking Obama about misstatements that he had made? Probably not. How about Stephanopoulos strenuously claiming that Obama was making misstatements when he hadn’t? Sure, not. But that is what happens continually with Republicans, particularly Republican women Palin and Bachmann. Take Stephanopoulos’s attacks on Bachmann regarding: “Founding Fathers ‘worked tirelessly’ to end slavery.” Even the Weekly Standard gets this right.

      [Princeton Professor] McPherson in the “Battle Cry of Freedom” summarizes Lincoln’s argument:

      The founding fathers, said Lincoln, had opposed slavery. They adopted a Declaration of Independence that pronounced all men created equal. They enacted the Northwest Ordinance of 1787 banning slavery from the vast Northwest Territory. To be sure, many of the founders owned slaves. But they asserted their hostility to slavery in principle while tolerating it temporarily (as they hoped) in practice. That was why they did not mention the words “slave” or “slavery” in the Constitution, but referred only to “persons held to service.” “Thus, the thing is hid away, in the constitution,” said Lincoln, “just as an afflicted man hides away a wen or a cancer, which he dares not cut out at once, lest he bleed to death; with the promise, nevertheless, that the cutting may begin at the end of a given time.” The first step was to prevent the spread of this cancer, which the fathers took with the Northwest Ordinance, the prohibition of the African slave trade in 1807, and the Missouri Compromise restriction of 1820. The second was to begin a process of gradual emancipation, which the generation of the fathers had accomplished in the states north of Maryland.

      Here’s what Lincoln said of the Founding Fathers in his 1854 Peoria speech:

      The argument of “Necessity” was the only argument they ever admitted in favor of slavery; and so far, and so far only as it carried them, did they ever go. They found the institution existing among us, which they could not help; and they cast blame upon the British King for having permitted its introduction. BEFORE the constitution, they prohibited its introduction into the north-western Territory—the only country we owned, then free from it. AT the framing and adoption of the constitution, they forbore to so much as mention the word “slave” or “slavery” in the whole instrument. In the provision for the recovery of fugitives, the slave is spoken of as a “PERSON HELD TO SERVICE OR LABOR.” In that prohibiting the abolition of the African slave trade for twenty years, that trade is spoken of as “The migration or importation of such persons as any of the States NOW EXISTING, shall think proper to admit,” &c. These are the only provisions alluding to slavery. Thus, the thing is hid away, in the constitution, just as an afflicted man hides away a wen or a cancer, which he dares not cut out at once, lest he bleed to death; with the promise, nevertheless, that the cutting may begin at the end of a given time. Less than this our fathers COULD not do; and NOW [MORE?] they WOULD not do. Necessity drove them so far, and farther, they would not go. But this is not all. The earliest Congress, under the constitution, took the same view of slavery. They hedged and hemmed it in to the narrowest limits of necessity.

      In 1794, they prohibited an out-going slave-trade—that is, the taking of slaves FROM the United States to sell.

    • A Puritan Descendant says:

      Tnx! I saved that one!


    It just hit me!! My dog sleeps about 20 hours a day. He has his food prepared for him. 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 earn a living. I was just thinking about all this, and suddenly it hit me like a brick in the head…

    My dog is a Democrat!

    • Mathius™ says:

      When was the last time you smacked a Democrat on the nose with a rolled up newspaper?

      BTW: I’m off to the left coast for a week of R&R. Try to save up some energy for when I get back – you’re all going to need it.


  42. Obama vilifies aircraft, praises GA manufacturers

    By AOPA Communications staff

    President Barack Obama on June 29 assailed businesses and individuals who use aircraft to support their business even as he praised the industry that makes those aircraft.
    AOPA Top Stories

    The president claimed that accelerated depreciation, which makes it more cost-effective to purchase a new aircraft, is too generous—that owners can afford to pay more. Accelerated depreciation is one of the tools that the aircraft manufacturing industry has used to dig out of the deep hole created by the worldwide recession in 2008, and made deeper by the president’s disparaging remarks about business aviation at that time.

    “We at AOPA are very disappointed in President Obama’s statements today concerning raising taxes on private aircraft,” said AOPA President Craig Fuller. “Imposing higher taxes on GA aircraft by lengthening depreciation schedules is inconsistent both with sound economic principles and with the promises of support made by the President’s own Secretary of Transportation just a few months ago during a speech in Wichita.

    “The use of GA aircraft creates and sustains thousands of American jobs, and GA manufacturing is one of the few sectors that produces much needed U.S. exports—a fact the President himself acknowledged in the same news conference where he derided the use of those aircraft,” continued Fuller.

    The president’s remarks also appear to be a reversal of administration policy as outlined just last October. At that time, Obama proposed accelerating depreciation schedules in an effort to encourage businesses to invest by reducing their tax burden on new purchases.

    “General aviation aircraft are important to economic growth and activity,” concluded Fuller. “They are used by businesses of all sizes to generate opportunities and create growth—often in communities that aren’t easily accessible through other means.”

    Now he’s gone and done it. He is picking on the wrong guy now……He is pissing off the Colonel big time….although the elimination of accelerated depreciation will never pass through Congress. What is next? A tax on Thor’s Hammer.

  43. Had to post this-I seriously question the stance that the lower courts have to or should view constitutionality based on Supreme Court precedents instead of the Constitution-but all his points otherwise say this crap is unconstitutional based on the actual Constitution.

    Obamacare Decision May Invite Supremes to Limit Federal Power
    June 30, 2011 5:40 A.M.
    By Grace-Marie Turner

    The Sixth Circuit was the first of several appeals courts to rule on the validity of Obamacare’s individual mandate, and conservatives are disappointed about Wednesday’s 2-1 decision upholding the law. They shouldn’t be.

    A careful reading of the entire 64-page document shows the swing judge may in fact be inviting the U.S. Supreme Court to use the case to finally put the brakes on the seemingly unlimited expansion of federal powers under the Constitution’s Commerce Clause.

    The key vote in Wednesday’s decision was Judge Jeffrey S. Sutton, a George W. Bush appointee and a former law clerk to Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. He sends a very loud signal that it’s time, with this case, for the Supreme Court to reverse course.

    Therefore, the celebration by those on the left who believe that this decision will give more impetus for the mandate to be upheld in other cases should put the corks back in the champagne.

    The Supreme Court has allowed the Commerce Clause to be used for decades to expand the power of the federal government to reach into virtually every corner of our economy and our lives. Judge Sutton explained that lower-court judges have a “duty to respect the language and direction of the Court’s precedents.” He said it is not within the powers of any lower court to reverse those precedents. “A court of appeals cannot” move beyond these judicial precedents, he repeats. Hence his vote to uphold the law was based upon previous liberal interpretations of the Commerce Clause.

    Only the Supreme Court can decide if interpretations of its previous decisions (about a farmer’s production of wheat or growing marijuana) have “outstripped the facts,” or if subsequent interpretations have made “broader and more extravagant assertions of legislative power . . . impervious to challenge,” Sutton writes.

    The judge argues that “commerce power has ‘evolved over time’ in favor of greater congressional power,” but adds that this “need not invariably be the case, lest each expansion of federal power beget another, piling one inference of an unlimited national police power onto another.”

    But he suggests that the health law presents the Supreme Court with the opportunity to finally put the brakes on the extravagant use of the Commerce Clause to expand federal power to unprecedented levels.

    Sutton wrote: “Today’s ‘question’ about the ‘extent of the powers’ granted to Congress goes primarily to its commerce power to compel individuals to buy something they do not want (medical insurance) as part of a regulatory system that a majority of elected representatives do want (national health care). If the commerce power permits Congress to force individuals to enter whatever markets it chooses, any remaining hold on national power will evaporate.”

    It sounds like an open invitation for the U.S. Supreme Court to put limits on Commerce Clause interpretations. “The basic policy idea, for better or worse (and courts must assume better), is to compel individuals with the requisite income to pay now rather than later for health care. . . . Call this mandate what you will — an affront to individual autonomy or an imperative of national health care — it meets the requirement of regulating activities that substantially affect interstate commerce” under previous Court interpretations, Sutton wrote.

    Sutton asks the crucial questions many are asking:

    That brings me to the lingering intuition — shared by most Americans, I suspect — that Congress should not be able to compel citizens to buy products they do not want. If Congress can require Americans to buy medical insurance today, what of tomorrow? Could it compel individuals to buy health care itself in the form of an annual check-up or for that matter a health-club membership? Could it require computer companies to sell medical-insurance policies in the open market in order to widen the asset pool available to pay insurance claims? And if Congress can do this in the health-care field, what of other fields of commerce and other products?

    Sutton concludes that precedent in interpretation of the Commerce Clause gives Congress the power to mandate the purchase of health insurance, but adds that “nothing about this view of the case precludes individuals from bringing” future challenges to the mandate by arguing that Congress crossed a constitutional line in imposing “this unprecedented requirement.” So even a Supreme Court decision may not be the last word.

    The 2-1 circuit-court decision came down over the question of the extent of “Congress’s power to regulate activities that substantially affect interstate commerce” by requiring individuals to maintain a minimum level of health coverage.

    Judge Boyce F. Martin Jr., a Democratic appointee, voted to uphold the health law, along with Sutton. Judge James L. Graham, appointed by President Reagan, disagreed with their core finding about the mandate’s unconstitutionality (see below). The case, brought by the Michigan-based Thomas More Law Center, was argued June 1, and the decision was unexpectedly speedy.

    The court decided that “the minimum-coverage provision regulates activity that is decidedly economic.” It concluded that people who “self-insure” — i.e., go without insurance — have an impact on interstate commerce if they require health care for which they cannot pay: “Thus, where Congress comprehensively regulates interstate economic activity, it may regulate non-economic intrastate activity if it rationally believes that, in the aggregate, the failure to do so would undermine the effectiveness of the overlying regulatory scheme.”

    The court found that the law’s strict insurance regulations (guaranteed issue and community rating) require more regulation through the individual mandate in order to protect the sellers of insurance from free riders who could “undercut its overlying economic regulatory scheme.” It said “the minimum-coverage requirement is essential to its broader reforms to the national markets in health-care delivery and health insurance.”

    That means the Commerce Clause is now being used to say that the Congress can insist on ever more onerous regulations to implement its previous onerous regulations. How’s that for a constitutional principle!

    The court also cited evidence that is damning of the health law: “The legislative record demonstrated that the seven states that had enacted guaranteed-issue reforms without minimum-coverage provisions [an individual mandate] suffered detrimental effects to their insurance markets, such as escalating costs and insurance companies exiting the market.”

    Judge Graham, the Reagan appointee, gets the last word in the opinion, saying what Sutton implied: “I believe the Court remains committed to the path laid down by Chief Justice Rehnquist and Justices O’Connor, Scalia, Kennedy, and Thomas to establish a framework of meaningful limitations on congressional power under the Commerce Clause. The current case is an opportunity to prove it so.

    “If the exercise of power is allowed and the mandate upheld, it is difficult to see what the limits on Congress’s Commerce Clause authority would be. What aspect of human activity would escape federal power?” Graham asked. “The ultimate issue in this case is this: Does the notion of federalism still have vitality? To approve the exercise of power would arm Congress with the authority to force individuals to do whatever it sees fit (within boundaries like the First Amendment and Due Process Clause), as long as the regulation concerns an activity or decision that, when aggregated, can be said to have some loose, but-for type of economic connection, which nearly all human activity does.

    “Such a power feels very much like the general police power that the Tenth Amendment reserves to the States and the people. A structural shift of that magnitude can be accomplished legitimately only through constitutional amendment,” he concludes.

    Liberals are celebrating prematurely. The Supremes will rule, and the decision that the Left perceives as a victory plants the seeds for a tectonic shift in a constitutional interpretation to limit federal powers.

  44. Now, I know I feel safer. The head of the counter terrorist department (Leiter) is being replaced by…………………… a lawyer. I can see it now. A terrorist blows up a barracks somewhere….kills 200 Americans………we sue them.

  45. A Puritan Descendant says:

    Maybe this is explains at least a part of the stock markets gains this week…….money out of treasuries and into the stock market?

    “Adverse market conditions such as rising interest rates may be worrisome enough to prompt Congress to reach a quicker compromise. There have been faint signs of such distress with the heavy selloff seen in the Treasurys market this week.”

  46. Shooting Statistics

    An interesting statistic from the ATF this week, which I quote:

    “If you consider that there have been an average of 160,000 troops in the Iraq
    theater of combat operations during the past 22 months, and a total of 2112 deaths, that gives a firearm death rate of 60 per 100,000 soldiers in a combat zone.
    The firearm death rate in Washington , DC is 80.6 per 100,000 for the same period.That means you are about 25 percent more likely to be shot and killed in the
    U.S. capital, (which has some of the strictest gun control laws in the U.S. ), than you are in Iraq .”

    The U.S. should pull out of Washington.

    Happy 4th everyone.

    • Murphy's Law says:

      I happily agree!

      Have a wonderful 4th yourself, and everyone else here at SUFA!


  47. Happy Independence Day!

    The Great Anniversary Festival
    By Frank Santarpia

    The words that launched this country on its journey to greatness were written by Thomas Jefferson of Virginia, and we can only wonder if, as he scratched his quill pen across a clean sheet of parchment, he knew the extent to which he would be shaping the history of the world.

    By early June of 1776, the Second Continental Congress had decided that a formal document needed to be created, one that would inform the King, the people of Great Britain, and the governments of the world that the will of the American people was unshakeable and unmistakable: the thirteen American colonies, united, would have nothing less than complete independence from the British crown.

    The declaration that Jefferson produced a scant month later shook the foundations of Europe — and signaled the rise of what would become the greatest nation in history.

    Today, as we have on every Fourth of July since 1776, we celebrate that Declaration of Independence and the nation that was born on the day it was affirmed. Of the adoption of the declaration by Congress, John Adams wrote to his wife “I am apt to believe it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the Great Anniversary Festival.”

    All too often we take for granted the men who signed that parchment, but we should always be mindful that in the eyes of King George and the British Parliament — rulers of a nation that possessed the most formidable military in the world — the signers were nothing more than traitors, deserving of nothing less than execution. By his affirmation of the declaration each man knew he might be signing his own death warrant — so we would do well to remember that our nation was born because men of steel nerves and raw courage willed it to happen.

    We were never meant to be a country of the timid — we were destined for boldness and greatness from the beginning, because those were the traits of our founders and forefathers. They apologized to no man or monarch; they ran from no fight; they defended their rights — and ours — to the moment of their death.

    Ironically, for two of the men responsible for the creation of the Declaration, John Adams and Jefferson himself, that moment of death came 50 years later to the day; they passed into history within hours of each other on July 4th, 1826.

    So as we bask in the happy company of family and friends today, let’s reflect on the courage of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Most of them were many days travel from hearth and home, gone for months at a time, suffering and debating through two hot, pestilent Philadelphia summers. All of them, to a man, risked their lives for their principles — because they believed, as you believe and I believe, that the natural state of man on Earth is freedom and that there is no higher cause than liberty.

    As much as anything else this day, we should remember and celebrate their courage, those men of the Second Continental Congress, and the bravery and dedication of all the men who gave their lives for that glorious cause.

    We are honor-bound, too, to acknowledge that they bestowed upon us a responsibility we cannot shirk and cannot ignore: America, the last, best hope of man on earth, must be defended at all costs against those who would destroy her by force of arms — or enslave her with the stroke of a pen.

  48. anoninnc says:

    I guess the following will really set me up with some of you . . . but honestly, with politics and name-calling aside, for me, this really well states the current predicament of our country. Fireworks and rhetoric tonight about liberty, freedom and our origins reinforce my desire to pray for America. May God bless you all, whatever your political stripe, whatever your brand of rhetoric, whatever your opinion of liberty and violence . . . and America,

    On July Fourth — Reagan, Obama and Keeping America On the Path to Greatness
    By Liz Peek Published July 04, 2011 |

    As we celebrate the birth of our great nation today, it’s worth recalling why our country came to be, and why it has been throughout its history a beacon to the dispossessed. The United States was founded by men and women seeking freedom and independence from England. They revolted against the taxes imposed by a far-off king who wanted too large a share in the prosperity of the fast-growing colony.

    Today, just as in 1776, there is a struggle taking place between those producing our country’s wealth, and those who would like to take it away. This tension exists not just in the United States, but across the developed world. In Greece, in the U.K., and in other financially pressed lands, those whose fortunes are tied to tax collections – public service workers, retirees collecting government-administered pensions, and those unable to fend for themselves – are resisting the cutbacks imposed by the financial crisis.

    Though the recession brought this confrontation forward by many years, it was – in all these countries – inevitable. As growth has slowed in the developed world, the ever-rising plenty that funded spiraling social services and the public sector has dwindled. It is now a battle between the funders and the funded.

    The debate today over the debt ceiling, and cutting government spending, is not just about the reckoning of budgets and accounts – there is profound disagreement about whether the burden of constantly widening support services will eventually dishearten our productive class. This is a debate worth having.

    The world has generally come to agree that Communism, at least as it was practiced in the Soviet Union and Cuba, failed because the philosophical underpinning was untrue.

    Marx believed in a world where workers would be motivated by the common good. He was wrong. It turns out that self-interest is the great motivator of humankind.

    The astonishing rise of China came about because its leaders acceded to this reality, and allowed workers there to enrich themselves. As a consequence, hundreds of millions have emerged from poverty – the greatest economic expansion the world has ever seen.

    The United States has long managed a prudent balance between protecting the rights of workers and of employers, of investors and retirees, of taxpayers and public sector workers. Today, many feel that that carefully wrought balance is askew. Our land of opportunity has become a land of limitation.

    This is not the first time this tension has surfaced. Economist Gary Shilling noted that Ronald Reagan became president at the moment when the country first had more people taking from the government than contributing to it. That is, the number of people paying taxes into the system had been eclipsed by those reliant on unemployment, Social Security, welfare and Veterans Administration payments.

    That year, 1980, we elected Ronald Reagan, who set about to unleash the great capabilities of our entrepreneurs and manufacturers, our small business managers and all those who, at the end, allow us to care for those in need. He didn’t dismiss that obligation, but realized how it might best be met: “Welfare’s purpose should be to eliminate, as far as possible, the need for its own existence.”

    Faced with an inflation rate of 11% and rising unemployment, which ultimately topped out at close to 11%, Reagan moved to cut back the sway of government, defusing entangling regulation that had stymied growth and frustrated those trying to do business. His credo: “It is not my intention to do away with government. It is rather to make it work – work with us, not over us; stand by our side, not ride on our back. Government can and must provide opportunity, not smother it; foster productivity, not stifle it.”

    Unhappily, in this cycle we are led by President Obama, who neither sympathizes with nor understands the private sector. He thinks that the government will push the economy forward; he believes that the private sector will perform its job if only regulated more stringently.

    In order to boost the economy, the Obama administration has offered up a bewildering slew of government policies that have retarded the recovery, and that threaten our future. President Obama does not intend to weaken the country; it’s simply that he is misguided. As President Reagan said, “It isn’t that liberals are ignorant, it’s just that what they know is wrong.”

    The nation took heart from Reagan’s common sense game plan. When he took office, a USA Today/Gallup poll showed a mere 17% of the population “satisfied with the direction” the country was taking; three years later that figure was at 50% and two years after that, 69% thought we were heading the right way.

    When President Obama took the oath of office, only 13% liked the path we were on; three years later, only 19% are satisfied.

    Our founding fathers gave us the most brilliant template for progress the world has ever seen. Generations of ambitious, hard-working souls have built on that foundation. Our nation’s independence is dependant on our continued success; we cannot allow this great nation to falter.

    As President Reagan said, “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.”

    Read more:

    • Marx believed in a world where workers would be motivated by the common good. He was wrong. It turns out that self-interest is the great motivator of humankind.

      It turns out you drank the Kool-Aid …

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