Wednesday, November 25, 2009
I missed Aram Rostom's expose of what is in effect and in part a giant Pentagon-to-Taliban payola scheme when it came out earlier this month in the Nation (not ordinarily high on my reading list). Now circulating in various publications on the Left -- but sent my way by John Bernard (no Lefty, he) -- this story of the systemic US-Afghan corruption that undergirds our continued presence in Afghanistan must not be dismissed as political fodder for just one side of the spectrum. This is a story of central importance to the American people, and deserves Left, Right and middle of the road attention.
Roston's digging attempts to lay bare the interlocking webs of corruption and pay-offs in which the US has enmeshed itself in an effort to supply US outposts in hostile territory -- i.e., all of Afghanistan. Our military people depend on those supply convoys for everything. But what kind of commanders put men and materiel in jeopardy in such hostile territory in the first place?
Friday, November 20, 2009
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
But James Wertsch, the Marshall S. Snow Professor and director of International & Area Studies, said that the emergence of communism and socialism are not big issues today and that new forms of nationalism are currently greater issues for America.
I am not sure what he means by "new forms" of nationalism or "greater issues" but the last time I checked it was leftist groups that were killing civilians, not the tea partiers.
So if you think that nationalism is a greater issue than creeping socialism, please return to your study through wikipedia. If you think what we need is for our children to be taught a deeper appreciation of the unique greatness of our Country, then check out the website of Free to Be.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Sunday, November 8, 2009
The America in which I was raised always stood for freedom, and not just freedom for Americans but freedom for suffering people around the World. When I was an exchange student in Germany in 1983, I found myself in endless debates about this, and about my President Ronald Reagan and his desire to build a missile defense system in Western Europe. I loved the German people. The kids were so refreshing in many ways, but their cynical views of the motives of my President shocked me.
I admit that I am a little unique. As a fairly young child, I poured through every issue of Time magazine, which is like our version of the German magazine, Die Zeit. Jimmy Carter was the President. He talked of peace while cutting our defense spending. I remember being very scared seeing charts and graphs comparing our defense systems including war planes, ships and intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs). The American armaments were blue and the Soviets vastly superior forced were Red. Here my story gets really odd. I was 12 years old when I read George Orwell’s 1984. The year was 1979. I was so struck by what I read and the parallels to the modern Soviet Union, that I picked up a copy of the Communist Manifesto. What I read made me nearly shriek in fear.
The Communist manifesto holds that communism cannot work unless the World is communist. The other fact I read, was that every time in this Century that America was attacked, a Democrat was in the White House, downsizing our military. So it was clear that the nearer the Soviet empire came to economic collapse, and had superior military capabilities, the more likely it was that they would attack. They were aggressively building up while Carter, the face of America, was downsizing our military. I often had trouble sleeping at night for fear of the Soviet missile attack. Then we elected Ronald Reagan.
Reagan became the new face of America to the World. My German friends did not like him. He moved fast and completely changed the course of America. He began rebuilding our military and he delivered that famous speech in Berlin in which he challenge Soviet President Michael Gorbachev to “tear down this wall!” My teenage German friends kept arguing that Reagan was a war-monger and that while Americans were good people, our President was bad. I tried to explain that in our political system, you cannot separate the two. Our President is us. The President cannot go to war without the American people. But he will go to war to protect you. He wants to use American tax dollars to place a missile defense system in Western Europe to protect you, because he felt a moral duty to you.
One of the most momentous experiences in my life was in June of 1990. I was back in Germany! Now I was married and my new wife, Gina and I were making a fast trek through Europe on our way to Berlin. On Saturday, June 16, 1990 I had the amazing privilege to chop on the wall. I got very emotional and still do to this day, at the realization that I was literally tearing open the cage that imprisoned my fellow man. This was of course a symbolic move, although we wondered whether Gorbachev would change his mind or become the victim of a coup and the Wall chopping would stop. So I joined hundreds of people, mostly Germans, I rented a hammer and chisel and I chopped. The real satisfaction was that I had helped to elect a President who valued the individual lives of any human being, without regard to geography, religion or people group enough that he would risk everything to set them free. Now we have a new face of America.
We elected Barak Obama, and he does not feel that moral duty to you as Reagan did, at least not enough to stand up to the shrill American voices that hate the American military. So he will not be there on November 9th to Celebrate the Fall of the Berlin Wall. I do not think he sees it the way you do. He will also not participate in the festivities on the campus of my College. Westminster College, in my State of Missouri, is where the great Allied leader Winston Churchill gave the Iron Curtain Speech. He told the World how millions of our fellow human beings were being stuffed into the cage, the very cage I was privileged to help dismantle. He had a way with words. On the campus of another American College he gave his shortest speech “Never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever give in.” But I digress.
Our new President believes that you are on your own. As the KGB agent-turned-billionaire, puppet master of the Russian Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin conducts war games of an assault on Poland, Obama has decided to tear down the American missiles from Poland. We knew that he cared less as he promised to remove our protection from the Iraqi people. 150 of them were slaughtered just this week. He really wants to find a way out of Afghanistan and pull our soldiers out just as you are pulling your U.N. workers out right now.
So my new President will not be there with you, like John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan were there for you. He has other priorities. I really wish I could be there to celebrate with you. Unfortunately, with the passing of time, I have five children, our economy is bad, and I too, have other priorities. So I am sorry that my President, the American face to the World will not be there for you. I feel just a little better knowing that you asked America to give him to you. I hope you like him.
Friday, October 23, 2009
This post by Joseph Phillips is an excellent commentary on the duplicity of the far left. Enjoy:
Playing for Keeps
I was an innocent – not pure as the driven snow, but certainly unwise as to the level of the stakes at which we were playing. I entered the debate believing it would be an intellectual exercise; we would joust with each other and after it was all over shake hands and exit with mutual respect. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Mutual respect? The black panelists on my side of the question were called uncle toms, the white member was accused of seeking to repeal the civil rights act. Honesty? No lie was too large to tell; statistics were made up, facts were created to suit the argument. And there would be no shaking of hands at the conclusion of the debate, in fact barely a graceful word was spoken. It was in that moment I realized the left not only disagreed with me; they hated me. I was not only wrong; I was evil. That slap in the face knocked the rose colored glasses from my eyes and I am now seeing clearly: we are in the midst of a cultural and ideological war and while Conservatives concern themselves with civility and rules, progressives are playing for keeps.
It is a continuing fascination for me that conservatives are constantly depicted as wearing Jackboots and engaging in intimidation, violence and general thuggery. However, current events suggest that more often it is the new left that is wearing jack boots and not the right.
For instance who was doing the goose-stepping when radio host Rush Limbaugh was booted from an investment group trying to buy the NFL franchise St. Louis Rams? The new left lied and slandered Limbaugh with the aim of denying him an economic opportunity. Denying a man opportunity because we don’t like what he believes, what he says or what he looks like is (or should be) anathema to a free society. Shame on Dave Checketts and Roger Goodell for giving in to cheap intimidation and ideological bigotry! By their cowardice we are all diminished.
Many on the left disagree and are no doubt satisfied at the outcome. But for whom does the bell toll next? Who else’s opinions will be objectionable? What makes a football team any different from any other business that employs people? Should anyone with unpopular beliefs be barred from owning, say, a Burger King franchise? Should we then also check ideological credentials at the gates of certain neighborhoods? The doors to our schools?
The left often dons the coat of righteous indignation because it tends to give one an air of civility. They are not, however, above some good old fashioned name calling or back alley beat-downs.
Recall the response of Dennis Rivera, health care chairman of the Service Employees International Union, (SEIU) – as well as a master of irony -- following the arrest of two of his esteemed members for allegedly pummeling a conservative protestor senseless. Rivera denounced conservative “terrorist tactics” aimed at derailing the debate on health care reform. Terrorists tactics are now defined as peaceful protest.
Rivera is not the only one with a rather elastic definition of terrorism; Rosabeth Moss Kanter a professor at Harvard business school writing in Politico justifies the depiction of tea partiers, conservatives and health care reform protesters as racist buffoons because they are enemies of America. Kanter writes: “President [Barack] Obama is marginalizing not just his enemies but those of the American people. He is attacking organizations standing in the way of progress toward reforming health care or cleaning up the conditions that led to the financial crisis. He is putting on notice advocates of greed — instead of the greater good — that they no longer have public legitimacy.”
Yes you read it correctly. America’s enemies are not Islamist, North Korean demagogues, or even Maoists and admitted communists working at the highest levels of our government. Rather they are American citizens that disagree with this president and other new liberals on the degree to which government should interfere and control our economic and cultural institutions. No doubt they had better keep their opinions to themselves lest they be greeted with some of what Rush got.
I have been working on a collection of thoughts by Americans on their love of America. After agreeing to participate a comedian friend of mine reneged. He joked that he didn’t want to be dragged from his car and beaten for having his name appear in a conservative book. Two things struck me as peculiar: first that loving ones country and writing about it is a “conservative” activity (not my belief but apparently his), and that he would joke of his concern that the liberal thought police would find him and give him a beat down for stepping out of line.
As my mother used to say, “Many a truth is said in jest.”
Obviously my friend had discarded his rose colored glasses long ago.
Joseph C. Phillips is the author of "He Talk Like a White Boy" available where ever books are sold.
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Flaws of Mercantilism
“Mercantilism, which reached its height in the Europe of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, was a system of statism which employed economic fallacy to build up a structure of imperial state power, as well as special subsidy and monopolistic privilege to individuals or groups favored by the state.”
Murray N. Rothbard (1926-1995) American Economist, Historian, Political Theorist and Author
Mercantilism is the partnering of government and private industry in an attempt to join the taxing power of government with the productivity and efficiency of industry. Sounds like a great model if it works. However, because of the conflicting structures of government and private industry, few if any exceptions to Mr. Rothbard’s description exist. And mercantilism is usually a disaster for the consumer. Accurate assessment of mercantilism is difficult, however, because once it is imposed; the private sector cannot compete independently and is soon absorbed or eliminated.
I was recently sent a letter-to-the-editor from the Nevada Daily Mail newspaper that illustrates the flaws of mercantilism and prompted me to write about its flaws. Written by Dr. Ron Jones and published in the September 1st edition, the letter provides information about the H1N1 virus (swine flu), how it has evolved, and the science and politics of treating it.
According to Dr. Jones, “
Alzheimer’s Disease, Gulf War Syndrome, certain autoimmune disorders, and Guillain-Barre syndrome have all been linked to chemical components frequently used in vaccines according to Dr. Jones. He recommends some safer treatments while questioning why the government is pushing vaccination.
Dr. Jones points out that “The National Institutes of Health and the military contractor Dyncorp co-own some vaccine patents. This seems an odd partnership, but not that odd in this day of government/business mergers. They stand to make a ton of money from this vaccination campaign.” Dr. Jones then claims that “the vaccine manufacturers have been given blanket immunity from prosecution over vaccine adverse effects…”
Mercantilism does not merge the best of public and private but the worst. A powerful natural constraint on free market misbehavior is the need to raise capitol. Without trust and integrity, capitol comes at a high price unless it can be raised from government where politics often trumps ethics and morality. Don’t fall victim to the myth of mercantilism. It combines the worst, not the best of both worlds. Murray Rothbard was correct that its principle effect is “…to build up a structure of imperial state power…and …privilege to
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
The newly created job of "Green Czar" put Jones in charge of $80 billion of the $787 billion in "stimulus" funds. I am not sure what is more shocking, that the appointments of such radical individuals is being made at all or that the major media are largely falling down on the job of scrutinizing these people.
The major media have nearly 100% ignored these arguably extra-constitutional appointments. It is one thing to appoint a specialist to dig into a problem in blue ribbon panel fashion, like a drug czar for instance, but quite another to put someone in charge of billions of tax dollars. Certainly, money is power and $80 billion is a lot of power. For anyone in the media to defend the laziness, flat dereliction, or deliberate obfuscation by saying that control of $80 billion is really not that important is beltway arrogance at its worst.
This kind of major media arrogance breeds suspicion. We are suspicious of the people who make these appointments and the media who choose not to discuss them. I did a fairly through search of the Whitehouse website looking for the page that proudly displays their Czar Dream Team. I hoped to see pictures and bio maybe in a nice complete listing. I hoped to get a total for the number of czars. No luck.
So it is not surprising that this has become a red state/blue state country. In the midwest we still think $80 billion is a lot of money. We would like to know about the agenda of the people spreading it around. What are they buying with our money? Who is getting incentivized and who is getting denied? What behavior are you seeking to create with that money? And by the way, what the hell is a "green job" anyway?
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Among the brave new government programs, like TARP bailouts, and auto industry takeovers, Cash for Clunkers was another program that defied logic. There were several arguments to "justify" it, few of which seem to have panned out. One of the worst performers was the argument that it would save vast sums of money wasted on poor fuel efficiency.
This from a friend of mine:
I guess I must be on the wrong page…
A vehicle at 15 mpg and 12,000 miles per year uses 800 gallons a year of gasoline.
A vehicle at 25 mpg and 12,000 miles per year uses 480 gallons a year.
So, the average clunker transaction will reduce US gasoline consumption by 320 gallons per year.
They claim 700,000 vehicles – so that's 224 million gallons / year.
That equates to a bit over 5 million barrels of oil.
5 million barrels of oil is about ¼ of one day's US consumption.
And, 5 million barrels of oil costs about $350 million dollars at $75/bbl.
So, we all contributed to spending $3 billion to save $350 million.
How good a deal was that ???
As author Keith Gosney alludes, the health care math used by the President is similarly challenged. He will expand access, add 42 million new insureds, and no one will be rationed out, no provider will be reimbursed less, and the budget will not be blown. Sounds "fishy".
Monday, August 31, 2009
The location is simple, about 1 mile south on highway 141 from Highway 40, at the intersection at Clayton Rd. and Woods Mill Rd. http://bit.ly/3KeHNj
1. They are requesting no signs on the premises, this is NOT a protest.
If people are there with signs, (we support free speech) please hang out on the roundabout off Woods Mill Rd. on the south side of the building - that is public property.
2. Think Ghandi and Trump. Spend like Trump, be peaceful like Ghandi. This is NOT a protest, it is a celebration of capitalism.
When you are there:
They have several entrances. We will be set up inside the south (flower) entrance, and inside the doors to the left by the coffee bar. That will be ground zero for our BUYcott. Say hello, do your shopping, and then bring your receipt to us to scan, tally, etc. so we can document our success.
Feel free to join many of us who will be dining there at 7pm.
WF is going to have lots of extra help in the check out lanes and aisles, including their regional manager who is coming in from Chicago, and will be likely be "aproned" to help tomorrow!!!
Sales are denoted by chalkboards throughout the store, typically with yellow signage.
They are going to feature whole rotisserie chickens (organic and hormone free, of course) for only $5.99. I think that will be a first hormone free chicken for me.
They have some great sales items including fruit, like $4watermelons, cheese, steak, and shrimp skewers 10 for $10!!!
They are loading up their display cases for "value packs" for us RIGHT NOW!!! I saw it myself. They heard we are fiscally conservative--imagine THAT!!!
They will have beer and wine samples for us. Don't be cheap though and expect to wash your chicken down with samples. : )
They close at 9, but Matt the manager assured us they will not kick us out : )
Fb: whole foods market town and country
Buy a Gift Card (here)
Have the card delivered to a food pantry as a gift
Forward the email receipt to gina-at-stlouisteaparty-dot-com.
I saw the very back of the store--shockingly clean!!! No funny old meat smell at all.
They will have their ppl available to talk to potential vendors/farmers who are local who would like to get their product into their store. I have sent out some invites to farmers I know.
Be nice or they will put you in the "Whole Body Lockup" located in the very back of the store. I saw it myself.
I won't say who, but I ran into the manager of the grocery store where I shop today at WF!
Michael Patrick Leahy, partiotic activist, founder of Top Conservatives on Twitter and author of the just released book "Rules for Conservative Radicals" will be joining us.
Please tell the media, Tweet, and fb about this so it is HUGE. They have really gone out of their way to stock up for us and create sales for us. Remember, the World is always watching for us to be the "mean-spirited haters" that so many of the statists actually are. I saw a young woman in dreadlocks working a register. This is a great time to cause others to wonder about the source of the joy in your heart.
All eyes are on St. Louis tomorrow, and if we make a big enough splash, this take-back-the-country tactic goes Nationwide!!!!
Saturday, August 29, 2009
When good people put their heads together to find ways to take back this country from any invader, foreign or domestic, there is no limit to what they can do. In this case, the battle lines are drawn at the board room of Whole Foods. When my wife, Gina told me the lefties were boycotting Whole Foods over a patriotic opinion piece written by their CEO and that they set up pickets in front of our local store, I was ready to run out and cross the line just for fun. She wanted to think bigger and better. Go figure. She suggested the Tea Partiers should organize and do something big. I suggested the Tea Partiers call it a "Teacott" which is a play on Tea Party and boycott, mixing in Michael Patrick Leahy's "TCOT" or Top Conservative on Twitter. Note the picture of my license plate to the right. When Gina, Bill, Dana and the gang got together on one of their power calls, they came up with the BUYcott!
This is perfect, because it is the pinko, anti-capitalist, ner-do-wells who are boycotting. So if the productive people counter with a buycott... Game on!
Bill's announcement from the St. Louis Tea Party website:
When: Tuesday, September 1 at 5:00 p.m.
Where: Whole Foods–Clayton and 141 or Brentwood Blvd.
Why: We’re shopping Whole Foods to support a compassionate capitalist. Whole Foods CEO John Mackey, one of the most generous CEOs in the country, wrote a WSJ op-ed describing his vision for a free-market healthcare reform package. Because the big union bosses stand to make billions of dollars from tax payers under ObamaCare, the unions are joining with socialists and other radicals trying to destroy John Mackey.
Friends, I have very little stomach for bullies and even less for cowards who cave into them. Speaking as a capitalist, there is nothing more pathetic than to watch a "captain of industry" cave to leftist bullies. It appears that is what may happen at Whole Foods. My knee-jerk reaction is to let them shove Mackey out and watch the cowards lose the whole company afterward as patriots, loyal to Mackey, find a good reason not to shop there. However, this being America, I follow the edict of Benjamin Franklin: We shall all hang together, or surely we shall all hang separately. As for me and my house, we are hanging with Mackey!
Remember one thing I tell my kids. Corporations cannot be expected to have hearts or even be patriotic. Their first duty is to measure the impact of every decision on the bottom line. Any deviation from that is a violation of the fiduciary duty of the board members. So, our patriotic duty is to coerce corporations into being the compassionate, patriotic operations we desire them to be. If we the consuming people endorse good behavior and vote with our wallets, then we will earn more good behavior. If we find ourselves "too busy" with our day to day activities and choose to stand idly by while a patriot like John Mackey, acting in the tradition of the patriots that built this country to fall, shame on us.
In the very near future I will write about my new favorite Corporate Patriot, Patrick Byrne of Overstock.com. Stay tuned. Meanwhile, if there is any company to boycott, let's consider where the Whole Foods board members work if they show cowardice.
The board: Dr. John B. Elstrott, Gabrielle Greene, Hass Hassan, Stephanie Kugalman, Jonathan A. Seiffer, Moris Siegel, Jonathan D. Sokolff, Dr. Ralph D. Sorenson, William A. (Kip) Tindell, III####
Friday, August 21, 2009
I saw this in the Investors Business Daily. It is an amazing summation of the competing ideologies at war in this country today. The more we learn about what President Obama meant by the word "change" (actually, what "independents who voted for Obama learn that conservatives already knew) the more people are rising up to resist. We see this in the Tea Partiers but also in the dramatic slip of the President in the polls. Support among independents is plummeting. Not one of the major policy initiatives of the Obama administration from the Employee Free Choice Act, to Health Care "Reform" to Cap and Trade enjoy anywhere close to 50% of popular support. So what motivates the leftist leaders that run our country? Do they really think that captalism is bad and socialism is good? We are in a war of ideaologies. This Russian immigrant offers up a history lesson that sums it up beautifully.
The Perspective Of A Russian Immigrant
By SVETLANA KUNIN | Posted Thursday, August 20, 2009 4:20 PM PT
In the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, I was taught to believe individual pursuits are selfish and sacrificing for the collective good is noble.
In kindergarten we sang songs about Lenin, the leader of the Socialist Revolution. In school we learned about the beautiful socialist system, where everybody is equal and everything is fair; about ugly capitalism, where people are exploited and treat each other like wolves in the wilderness.
Life in the USSR modeled the socialist ideal. God-based religion was suppressed and replaced with cultlike adoration for political figures.
The government-assigned salary of the proletariat (blue-collar worker) was 30%-50% higher then any professional. Without incentive to improve their life, professionals drank themselves to oblivion. They — engineers, lawyers, doctors, teachers — earned a government-determined salary that barely covered the necessities, mainly food.
Raising children was a hardship. It took four to six adults (parents and grandparents) to support a child. The usual size of the postwar family was one or two children. Every woman had the right to have an abortion and most of them did, often without anesthesia.
There is a comparative historical reality that plays out the consequences of two competing ideologies: life in the USSR and in America. When the march to the worker's paradise — the Socialist Revolution — began in 1917, many people emigrated from Russia to the U.S.
In the USSR, economic equality was achieved by redistributing wealth, ensuring that everyone remained poor, with the exception of those doing the redistributing. Only the ruling class of communist leaders had access to special stores, medicine and accommodations that could compare to those in the West.
The rest of the citizenry had to deal with permanent shortages of food and other necessities, and had access to free but inferior, unsanitary and low-tech medical care. The egalitarian utopia of equality, achieved by the sacrifice of individual self-interest for the collective good, led to corruption, black markets, anger and envy.
Government-controlled health care destroyed human dignity.
Chairman Nikita Khrushchev released facts about Stalin and his purges. People learned of the horrific purge of more than 20 million citizens, murdered as enemies of the state.
Those who left Russia found a different set of values in America: freedom of religion, speech, individual pursuits, the right to private property and free enterprise. The majority of those immigrants achieved a better life for themselves and their children in this capitalist land.
These opportunities let the average immigrant live a better life than many elites in the Soviet Communist Party. The freedom to pursue personal self-interest led to prosperity. Prosperity generated charity, benefiting the collective good.
The descendants of those immigrants are now supporting policies that move America away from the values that gave so many immigrants the chance of a better life. Policies such as nationalized medicine, high tax rates and government intrusion into free enterprise are being sold to us under the socialistic motto of collective salvation.
Socialism has bankrupted and failed every society, while capitalism has lifted more people out of poverty than any other system.
There is no perfect society. There are no perfect people. Critics say that greed is the driving force of capitalism. My answer is that envy is the driving force of socialism. Change to socialism is not an improvement on the imperfections of the current system.
The slogans of "fairness and equality" sound better than the slogans of capitalism. But unlike at the beginning of the 20th century, when these slogans and ideas were yet to be tested, we have accumulated history and reality.
Today we can define the better system not by slogans, but by looking at the accumulated facts. We can compare which ideology leads to the most oppression and which brings the most opportunity.
When I came to America in 1980 and experienced life in this country, I thought it was fortunate that those living in the USSR did not know how unfortunate they were.
Now in 2009, I realize how unfortunate it is that many Americans do not understand how fortunate they are. They vote to give government more and more power without understanding the consequences.
Svetlana Kunin, Stamford, Conn.
Editor's note: Mrs. Kunin, an IBD subscriber, is a retired software developer. In the Soviet Union, she was a civil engineer.
Friday, August 7, 2009
While 1000 people stand in line at the front door of a public school to hear Congressman Carnahan on healthcare, a St. Louis County cop actually blocks town hall meeting attendees from using a side door reserved only for union members.
Check out this video:
Facts: public school, Cong. "town hall", one entrance for whites, one for blacks, I mean one union one non-union - is that legal at a public venue?
A black man attending, whose offense is handing out "Don't tread on Me" flags is assaulted by thugs in SEIU t-shirts. Several thugs were arrested. Post-Dispatch reporter Jake Wagman who was videotaping the event himself, was also arrested for some reason. This is making national news including the unions planning to "counter protest" the protestors. Hopefully the Post-Dispatch and other major media will catch that every teaparty event before this one was peaceful, but that as soon as the AFL-CIO issued their call to "mobilize" that the union brown shirts turned to their usual tactic of thuggery, fear and intimidation. Maybe their effective use of thuggery is why they want to strip workers of the right to a secret ballot.
Thursday, August 6, 2009
There are so many terrible ideas coming out of Congress that friends of mine are suffering from near protest fatigue. Ironicly, as I write this, democrat operative Bob Shrumm is repeating the Pelosi pie-in-the-sky wishful though du jour, that the protesters are hired hacks. Well, my CPA is no hired hack. This is a bookish guy who quietly runs an admirable business with his wife, also a CPA, in a small office in South St. Louis County. He is fed up enough that he penned this analysis and invited me to share it. Enjoy:
AMERICAN CLEAN ENERGY AND SECURITY ACT (aka The Cap and Trade Bill)
On June 26, 2009 the U.S. House of Representatives passed the so-called Cap and Trade Bill. The Bill is over 1400 pages long (including 300 pages added early in the morning on the day of the vote in a cynical political move designed to railroad the bill through without adequate time for study or debate). Cap and Trade is a cute marketing term. This Bill covers much, much more than just the trading of carbon permits to reduce emissions. The Bill even contains a section about light bulbs. The Table of Contents for the Bill is 16 pages long!
With all the news focusing on health care legislation, it is easy to forget that this Bill has already passed the House and has been sent on to the U.S. Senate. It is expected that the Senate will debate and vote on the Bill this fall. It must be defeated! Senators will be in their home states during the month of August. They need to hear from the voters. They need to hear from you!!
Cap and trade involves setting a total cap on national greenhouse gas emissions and establishing a market for a finite number of allowances to emit greenhouse gases up to the total amount of the cap, which would be lowered gradually over time.
This Bill will be very harmful to the Unites States.
First: The Bill sets the ambitious target of reducing total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by 83% below 2005 levels by the year 2050! In effect, the U.S. will need to reduce emissions to a level last experienced in 1910 when the U.S. had a population of 92 million (compared to the forecast population of 420 million in 2050). As this level of reduction is simply not possible, the Bill includes a large number of “offsets” which are treated as part of the reduction. Offsets essentially consist of planting more trees here in the U.S. and in developing nations. Carbon emitters (e.g. coal burning companies such as electric utilities) will pay developing nations to increase reforestation efforts. This is essentially a huge foreign aid program.
Congress can mandate emissions reductions for the United States but they cannot mandate them for the rest of the world. China and India, two of the world’s largest emitters of greenhouse gases, do not plan to reduce their emissions. Our adoption of these reductions will put us at a disadvantage to China and India and will not result in worldwide reductions of these emissions.
Second: If you own a home or other building, you need to be aware of Title II of the Bill which REQUIRES:
New buildings must be 30% more energy efficient than current building code standards effective immediately upon signing of the Bill. New buildings must be 50% more energy efficient by 1/1/2014 (residential) and 1/1/2015 (commercial). New buildings must become 5% more energy efficient every 3 years thereafter until they are 75% more efficient than current standards.
Existing buildings will be subject to inspection by the authorities to make certain that they meet the applicable energy efficiency standards: (1) When they are renovated, (2) when they are sold, or (3) when the person responsible for the utility bill is changed.
The Bill creates a big new Federal entitlement program which provides funds to pay up to 50% of the cost up to $12,200 to assist residential building owners and funds to pay up to 50% of the cost to assist non residential building owners to increase the energy efficiency of their homes/ buildings to prescribed levels. As expensive as this program will be to taxpayers, it still leaves the homeowner/building owner holding the bag for the other 50%.
As you can see, this Bill has a direct impact on you if you are a property owner. It will increase your costs, reduce your return or profit and reduce your freedom as a property owner to do with your property as you wish.
Third: The Bill is very harmful to the economy. The Heritage Foundation has estimated that the Bill will cause unemployment to increase by 2 million in 2012 and further increase to 2.5 million in 2035 and will cause GDP loss of $9.4 trillion by 2035.
Fourth: It will not even have a significant impact on global warming. Climatologist Chip Knappenberger of New Hope Environmental Services calculates that the Bill will reduce Earth’s temperature by .1 to .2 degrees Celsius by 2100.
This Bill needs to be defeated in the United States Senate. That can only be done if everyone contacts their Senator. If a Senator opposes the Bill, thank him or her. If a Senator is undecided make certain they know you oppose the Bill. If a Senator favors the Bill, make sure they know you don’t favor it, that you vote and that this Bill is important enough that you will vote against them in the next election.
The most effective means of contact is obviously person-to-person. Many Senators will be holding town meetings during the recess. If you can attend one, do so and speak up. If you can’t you should write an old-fashioned snail mail letter. The address is:
Office of Senator (Name)
United States Senate
Each Senator has local offices also. You can find your Senators’ local offices in the Government pages in your local phone book. Alternatively, you can contact your Senator, by e-mail at www.Senate.gov. You can access the Senate Web Site and find your Senator’s Washington office phone # and call that office. You can also call the Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and they will put you through to your Senator’s office or you can also call their local office.
Cap and Trade can be stopped if we act!!
Friday, July 3, 2009
As most of you know, Al Franken became the 60th vote in the Senate. That means the Republican opposition to the Democrat oligarchy is virtually disarmed. Obama, Pelosi and Reid can now pass anything upon which the three of them agree. So expect the newly filibuster proof Democrats to get even more brazen than they have been already.
For instance, while many business lobbyists are pinning their hopes against passage of EFCA on more moderate Democrats like Senator Ben Nelson of Nebraska, his staff pointed out to The Hill, that Nelson "abhors any kind of obstruction in the Senate". Not one Democrat Senator has committed to voting against the expected cloture motion.
Missouri is one of just 21 States in which voters have the right to petition their Government and change laws themselves.
The Missouri petiton drive to save the right to a secret ballot is in high gear. We have tipped the $100,000 raised mark and collected almost 40,000 signatures.
We still need your help.
Derek Grier has agreed to coordinate our statewide volunteer signature gathering effort. He can be reached at (314) 229-7232.
This is a great weekend to gather signatures. I can think of no better time than when people are at festivals celebrating our freedom, to ask them to sign a petition to guarantee their right to a secret ballot.
If you can help we can email you a downloadable petition and instructions that you can print at home.
Gina and I will be at the Taxpayer Tea Party at Rennick Park in Washington Missouri at 11am Saturday and will be looking for help there. Gina is a featured speaker and will be talking about SOS Ballot. Chesterfield is hosting an event Saturday at Chesterfield Mall.
Not surprising, union activists are harassing petition circulators. In a tactic called "blocking" the thug will approach a circulator and start a verbal battle to make sure no one wants to stop to sign and get into a fight. The thugs who want to intimidate people from signing a petition to preserve their right to a secret ballot are also arguing that workers should be stripped of their right to vote be secret ballot because we can trust union organizers not to intimidate people to join their union and pay dues for the privilege.
So if you see a thug at work harassing a pro-freedom petition circulator, why don't you jump right in, sign the petition (only once please) and then run interference on the thug and give him a piece of your freed0m-loving mind.
Meanwhile, have a great Independence Day weekend!
Thursday, June 4, 2009
From Kruschev's favorite read:
"It must be said, that like the breaking of a great dam, the American decent into Marxism is happening with breath taking speed, against the back drop of a passive, hapless sheeple, excuse me dear reader, I meant people.
True, the situation has been well prepared on and off for the past century, especially the past twenty years. The initial testing grounds was conducted upon our Holy Russia and a bloody test it was. But we Russians would not just roll over and give up our freedoms and our souls, no matter how much money Wall Street poured into the fists of the Marxists.
Those lessons were taken and used to properly prepare the American populace for the surrender of their freedoms and souls, to the whims of their elites and betters.
First, the population was dumbed down through a politicized and substandard education system based on pop culture, rather then the classics. Americans know more about their favorite TV dramas then the drama in DC that directly affects their lives. They care more for their "right" to choke down a McDonalds burger or a BurgerKing burger than for their constitutional rights. Then they turn around and lecture us about our rights and about our "democracy". Pride blind the foolish.
Then their faith in God was destroyed, until their churches, all tens of thousands of different "branches and denominations" were for the most part little more then Sunday circuses and their televangelists and top protestant mega preachers were more then happy to sell out their souls and flocks to be on the "winning" side of one pseudo Marxist politician or another. Their flocks may complain, but when explained that they would be on the "winning" side, their flocks were ever so quick to reject Christ in hopes for earthly power. Even our Holy Orthodox churches are scandalously liberalized in America.
The final collapse has come with the election of Barack Obama. His speed in the past three months has been truly impressive. His spending and money printing has been a record setting, not just in America's short history but in the world. If this keeps up for more then another year, and there is no sign that it will not, America at best will resemble the Wiemar Republic and at worst Zimbabwe.
These past two weeks have been the most breath taking of all. First came the announcement of a planned redesign of the American Byzantine tax system, by the very thieves who used it to bankroll their thefts, loses and swindles of hundreds of billions of dollars. These make our Russian oligarchs look little more then ordinary street thugs, in comparison. Yes, the Americans have beat our own thieves in the shear volumes. Should we congratulate them?
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
I cannot imagine a much greater honor than to be eulogized in the National Review. That is a well-deserved honor befitting great men such as Richard Nadler. I knew him as a critic of politicians, one who challenged all of us to look closer at our core values as they related to the real role of government. In fact, he was the man who bestowed upon me one of my greatest honors, one which he did in fitting Nadleresque style. He gave me the title "Taxpayer Watchdog."From the National Review:
National Review’s Ramesh Ponnuru on Richard Nadler
I just learned that one of my oldest and dearest friends, Rich Nadler, died this morning at his home in Kansas City. Rich was many things: a high-school dropout, an autodidact, a traveling jazz musician, an ex-communist, the publisher of the late, great K.C. Jones, a hilarious movie reviewer, the head of the Missouri Taxpayers Watchdog Association, and a sometime contributor to National Review and, lately, the Corner. In the last years of his life he was, above all, a devout orthodox Jew and a devoted husband to Barbara.
He gave me my start in journalism and constantly encouraged me, even as we came to disagree on some matters. He was one of the most brilliant men I have ever known. Now there are a hundred things I won’t be able to talk or argue with him about. R.I.P.
I received a phone call on Summer morning from a somewhat gleeful constituent. On the line was Lloyd Sloan, also a brilliant thinker along the lines of Richard Nadler. Together they made the toughest critics of politicians. They had completed the task of analyzing the voting records of the 88th General Assembly in Jefferson City, Missouri as a function of the Missouri Taxpayer Watchdog Association. Lloyd was kind of proud of the fact that the winner was his own State Rep. - yours truly. While I was honored indeed, the glory was doused in cold water when Lloyd told me, "Yeah, you got the best score in Jefferson City, but you still flunked."
Monday, April 27, 2009
In the famous tale, the friend to all, defender of the defenseless, man of honor; Robin Hood reserves his lawless exploits for sacking the Sheriff of Nottingham. Why would the honorable man commit a crime or any act of injustice? The answer is in the question. A man of honor would not commit an act of injustice.
While much of the story is disputed, we know that his prime target is the Sheriff of Nottingham who is taxing everyone into near starvation. He is doing so under the limited authority of Prince John, the evil brother of King Richard the Lion Heart. King Richard, the legitimate ruler is away on the Crusades and Prince John contrives the story that he is raising taxes to pay the ransom to free King Richard. In truth, he is raising the taxes to overthrow his brother and take the throne.
So Robin Hood, loyal to God, Country and his fellow man, was acting in a legitimate manner, under authority, when he took action in protest against the unjust taxation by an illegitimate authority for an illegitimate purpose. Robin Hood was not a renegade or a socialist, he was a tax protester.
So it is today. The leftist propagandists who do have an answer for the non-partisan, fiscal prudence, anti-spending calls of the tax payer tea parties of 2009 are in full spin mode, attacking the messenger and twisting the message. Honor today is found in the peaceful protests of activists who know that the authorities (however loathsome) are legitimate but the policies are wrong. They know they cannot take up arms so they take up signs, blow horns and blogs. So while defamed daily by the leftist media, the tea party protesters are in very good company.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
We at the Taxpayer Tea Parties are taxpayers – not welfare cheats – not tax dodgers
We believe that you render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s
We resent that Caesar went on a wild spending spree and stuck our children w/ the tab.
We know that confiscatory tax burdens drive away jobs.
We know that the major corporations who leave cities, who left St. Louis City, like Southwestern Bell, now AT&T, left when Governor Carnahan passed the biggest tax hike in state history.
We can only be dismissed at the ignoramus’ peril.
We voted in Republicans who raised spending, we voted in Democrats who spent worse. We learned.
We shake our heads at pundits who want to dismiss us the usual tax protestors.
We view as dangerous, the apologists who refuse to acknowledge the problem.
We are rising up now because our very republic is at stake.
We are shocked that the $55 trillion social security and Medicaid debt already “earned”, obligates each of us to $185,000.
We are issuing a demand for politicians to show the guts to either cut spending or raise taxes to meet the level of their spending.
We believe sticking this debt on our children is the height of immorality and cowardice.
We are taking a stand now in defense of our children.
We are conservatives which means we actually have children.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Chesterfield Missouri is a solidly upper middle class municipality in suburban St. Louis County with a media family income well over six figures. While one might expect their "Monarch Fire District" firefighters to make a good living, you would probably not expect their pay and benefits package to outstrip their patrons. The pay and benefits package for an individual firefighter is over $112,000 after five years. How did they do this? They have managed to win every single election over the last twenty years. As the affluent area prospered, they prospered. Rather than new equipment or new buildings, they demanded more pay and benefits, like a health insurance plan with plastic surgery benefits. Then it happened. A board member turned on them. In fact, every board member who turned on them was turned out of office, except one. They made sure he paid.
At a press conference today, an angry resident will reveal some startling documents. The firefighter's union needed a scandal. They created one with an audit of the health plan. Making bogus charges of criminal misconduct they called for the resignation the two citizen board members who opposed them; a doctor and a businessman who they had originally endorsed for office. The documents make reference to an investigative reporter as "in play" and reveal a complex plot to so harass the elected office holders as to "secure (their) resignations".
All told, the union has spent over $60,000 on the audit, over $70,000 taking out the last board member, and has so well-funded their current candidate that she is running ads on network TV running as a "taxpayer advocate" and, ironicly making reference to her opponents' pilot union membership. The plot appears to have worked. The physician, although fully exonerated has chosen not to run for a second term.
The legal bills to defend the board members from the audit and the criminal allegations has cost taxpayers upwards of $200,0000. The board in its fiduciary role, has sued the union's pr company in order to recover those tax dollars. The documents to be revealed today came from that discover process.
MONARCH RESIDENTS FOR RESPONSIBLE GOVERNMENT
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Herman Kriegshauser
Legal Exhibits Prove Residents’ Suspicions
CHESTERFIELD, MO March 24, 2009 – Herman Kriegshauser, member of the Monarch Fire Protection District Citizen’s Advisory Committee and 42 year resident, will hold a press conference at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, March 25 at Chesterfield City Hall (690 Chesterfield Parkway West, Chesterfield, MO) to present documentation that Monarch Firefighters and Paramedics conspired to subvert the electoral process by creating a campaign designed to force two well-respected elected officials to resign in order for the Union to take control of the Monarch Fire Protection District Board of Directors. This effort, which Mr. Kriegshauser recently uncovered, appears to have begun in December 2007 and it continues today.
Mr. Kriegshauser, who retired from his family’s funeral home business, came across this information as a result of a Sunshine Law request to see the Fire District’s files pertaining to a lawsuit it filed against Independent Insurance Auditing Service. The documents detail how the Monarch Firefighters and Paramedics Union hired a public relations firm and created a plan with a stated written objective to “Secure Resignations of Gans and Terschluse” (refers to Board President Richard Gans and Secretary Dr. David Terschluse).
Mr. Kriegshauser brought the documents to Board President, Rick Gans attention. Mr. Gans was aware the public relations firm was deposed as a part of the lawsuit, but he was appalled at what was contained in the documents. Gans said, “while I suspected all along that the Union was engaged in an effort to take control of the Board, I had no idea how far they went by hiring a professional P.R. firm to phantom write the Citizen’s Comments that were being delivered during Board meetings, or the Letters to the Editor that were supposedly written by concerned taxpayers. They clearly crossed the line”. Gans went on to say that Monarch firefighters and paramedics are among the highest paid in the country, yet they seem unsatisfied with current wages and benefits that exceed $100,000 for most and $140,000 for some. “At a time when the economy is suffering and tax dollars are so precious, the audacity of this Union to continue its efforts for double digit increases is absurd”.
Mr. Kriegshauser will provide copies of the documentation to those who attend the Press Conference on March 25. Additional information about Monarch Fire District wages and benefits may be found on the District’s official website at www.monarchfpd.org.
Saturday, February 14, 2009
Through history, certainly since President Reagan made it cool to be conservative, one would be hard pressed to find a "radical" social conservative (another misapplied label, think about it) voting with the Democrat majority for huge new spending increases. No folks, when the heat is on and we are betrayed by our party, the ones doing the betraying are going to be from the left flank.
Certainly, anyone calling themselves "conservative" while voting to borrow $600 billion from their grandchildren to spend on welfare expansion today ought to be ashamed.
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
1. We filed ballot language
2. We are waiting for Secretary of State Robin Carnahan (in her Constitutional role to put neutral ballot summary language on all citizens petitions) to put offensive ballot title language on it.
3. We will (take the only action available besides "give up" and) sue her.
4. We will wait for the legal process to hopefully give us better language.
5. Maybe we will be circulating petitions sometime in late Spring or early Summer.
Did you catch that? In case anyone in the room that day missed it, another presenter told about his process. He is in the same position as us, waiting for bad language from Robin so he can sue.
Did you know that Robin Carnahan is the only SOS in the history of Missouri to have her language struck down ever? The courts have determined she violated her "fairness" role TWICE! You see, when Legislators put an issue on the ballot, presumably the people received due process because their representatives wrote the language collectively. When private parties desire to put an issue on the ballot the question becomes one of whom we entrust to write a fair summary of what the language actually does. Secretary Carnahan clearly has a priority other than fairness. If your ballot issue involves a traditional American value you can assume that Secretary Carnahan will use/abuse her power and do all she can to stymie your efforts.
Did you know that socialist billionaire George Soros has launched a national effort to get exactly this result from leftist elections officials?
As the World watches the Minnesota recount that has seen the liberal icon Al Franken go from losing the election to winning it, a result almost unheard of, the top elections official is a beneficiary of Soros' dollars.
This abuse of power by the left is only now being exposed. It will continue until intellectually honest activists of all stripes recognize that ballot box integrity and a free and fair elections process is what separates the civilized countries of the World from the dictatorships.
For more on this story: http://www.bizjournals.com/stlouis/stories/2009/02/09/daily12.html