Saturday, October 31, 2009

Global warming now causes fewer hurricanes I guess

Remember the good old days when Global Warming was the cause of Hurricane Katrina and the horrible hurricane season that year.

I sure do. Just to make sure I wasn't hallucinating I did this thing called googling to make sure that was the case.

I found this from 9/1/05 from The Nation.................
But he neglected to raise these specifics or to question Barbour about his previous work as a corporate lobbyist who, on behalf of his well-paying clients, fought fiercely against the Kyoto accords. (Recent scientific research suggests that global warming has led to more destructive hurricanes.)

or this from the 8/29/05 Time.............

So is global warming making the problem worse? Superficially, the numbers say yes—or at least they seem to if you live in the U.S. From 1995 to 1999, a record 33 hurricanes struck the Atlantic basin, and that doesn�t include 1992�s horrific Hurricane Andrew, which clawed its way across south Florida in 1992, causing $27 billion dollars worth of damage. More-frequent hurricanes are part of most global warming models, and as mean temperatures rise worldwide, it�s hard not to make a connection between the two. But hurricane-scale storms occur all over the world, and in some places—including the North Indian ocean and the region near Australia—the number has actually fallen. Even in the U.S., the period from 1991 to 1994 was a time of record hurricane quietude, with the dramatic exception of Andrew.

So according to these Branch Gorevidians, global warming causes more hurricanes. Then how do they explain this.......

The North Atlantic hurricane season has not produced a storm in over 3-weeks and, if no more develop, the season overall would rank as the slowest since the El Nino year of 1997. Hurricanes Bill and Fred accounted for over 82% of the Accumulated Cyclone Energy [ACE**] -- a metric that combines intensity, duration, and frequency of hurricanes and tropical storms during a year. The remaining storms were weak, rather short-lived and unremarkable. Indeed, the Accumulated Cyclone Energy [ACE] of 44 ranks among the slowest during the past half-century. Elsewhere, the Northern Hemisphere and Global ACE when calculated either with 12- or 24-month running sums, remains just above historical 30-year lows.
So what is it?

How much should insurers pay?

Since the Obamunists took over the country last fall, everything I've heard from these people is how big and ugly and greedy insurance companies are.

But instead of parroting that talking point I decided to do something unheard of to a liberal. Look it up.

Now let's play a game.

What percentage of premiums should be paid out in claims?

Keep in mind that you have to pay processors, sales staff, office space etc. Oops, don't forget the taxes.

So what do you think is a fair amount for the insurance companies to pay out in claims.

50% ?

60% ?

70% ?

80% ?

90% ?

100% ?

What's fair in the world of a liberal?

Here's what Humana, the Gekko's insurance carrier paid out............ 84.5% The net profit margin (income after all expenses are paid) accounted for 2.3% of the premiums.

I don't find that excessive. Especially, when you consider that the government takes in half of what the company takes in. And what exactly did the government(s) do for their 345 million? Not a damn thing.

I also checked WellPoint and they paid out a 84.4% in premiums. Again, various government entities found a way to collect 630 million in taxes to do absolutely nothing to deliver heath care and the company made a whopping 4.3%.

None of that sounds outrageous to me.

But even before you read the numbers he one way to tell if companies are making enough money. How many companies are getting into the business v. getting out.

I'm guessing that you'll find that more companies are getting out than getting in.

When the government runs health care

You get this.................

Parents of "at risk" children have been tying up the phone lines of their pediatricians trying to find out who has the vaccine and where they might go to get their kids a shot. Parents in a Milwaukee suburb spent hours in the rain waiting for a shot. A group of concerned mothers from Maryland will be waking their children before dawn Saturday and driving nearly an hour to wait in line for who knows how long -- all in the hopes of scoring one of 800 vaccinations available in a neighboring county. Pediatricians are waking up in the middle of the night after nightmares about a vaccine shortage.

Frustration and anger have been building but there had not been an obvious target for those feelings. That may have changed late Friday afternoon with the news that the Pentagon has offered to give swine flu shots to detainees and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Major Diana Haynie, a spokesman for the Joint Task Force at Gitmo, explained the decision this way.
"Detainees at JTF Guantanamo are considered to be at higher risk and therefore they will be offered the H1N1 vaccination."

Really? Higher risk than who? Pregnant women are six times more likely than others to have a fatal bout of swine flu -- and yet some of them have been unable to get a shot. The shortage is so severe that state and local health officials have been forced to cancel and reschedule vaccination clinics, and to adjust their strategies about who gets a shot and when. According to this article:

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lists those at greatest risk of serious illness from swine flu as: pregnant women; healthcare and emergency medical staff who have direct contact with patients; people who live with or provide care for children under 6 months old; children ages 6 months to 4 years; and children 5 to 18 with chronic medical conditions such as asthma and diseases of the heart and liver.

The CDC forgot to list Gitmo detainees. "JTF Guantanamo conducts safe, humane, legal and transparent care and custody of detainees. As such, we must provide detainees the medical care necessary to maintain their health," said the Gitmo spokesman.

So Khalid Sheikh Mohamed, the man who conceived the 9/11 attacks that killed nearly 3000 Americans, is eligible for a swine flu vaccination. But Kristin Bencik, a pediatrician working overtime to treat kids suspected of having swine flu, has chosen to forego a shot so that she is not taking one away from one of her vulnerable patients. And she is really a "higher risk" case -- she's pregnant

Read the rest of the insanity here....

Friday, October 30, 2009

Barney Frank: "We Are Trying On Every Front To Increase The Role Of Government"

"Just a guy in the neighborhood"

Remember the Obama proclamation that Bill Ayers was "just a guy in the neighborhood".

Well apparently, that's enough to qualify you for a visit to the White House.

In a move it is hailing as "transparency like you've never seen before," the White House on Friday released nearly 500 visitor records (.csv document; may require spreadsheet program) of individuals visiting the executive mansion between Inauguration Day and the end of July. Many of the names appear, on first glance, to be boldface ones -- such as Michael Jordan, William Ayers, Michael Moore, Jeremiah Wright, Robert Kelly ("R. Kelly") and Malik Shabazz

Nice to see R. Kelly made an appearance given that Roman Polanski couldn't make it.


Classic Steyn

Valerie Jarrett announced the other day that "we're going to speak truth to power."

Who's Valerie Jarrett? She's "Senior Adviser" to the president of the United States – i.e., the leader of the most powerful nation on the face of the Earth. You would think the most powerful man in the most powerful nation would find a hard job finding anyone on the planet to "speak truth to power" to. But I suppose if you're as eager to do so as his Senior Adviser, there's always somebody out there: The Supreme Leader of Iran. The Prime Minister of Belgium. The Deputy Tourism Minister of the Solomon Islands. But no. The Senior Adviser has selected targets closer to home: "I think that what the administration has said very clearly is that we're going to speak truth to power. When we saw all of the distortions in the course of the summer, when people were coming down to town hall meetings and putting up signs that were scaring seniors to death."

Ah, right. People "putting up signs." Can't have that, can we? The most powerful woman in the inner circle of the most powerful man on Earth has decided to speak truth to powerful people standing in the street with handwritten placards saying "THIS GRAN'MA ISN'T SHOVEL READY." Was it only a week ago that I wrote about this administration's peculiar need for domestic enemies?

The Senior Adviser seems to have forgotten that she is the power. Admittedly, this is a recurring lapse on the part of the administration. There was Barack Obama only the other day, blaming everything on the president – no, no, silly, not him, the other fellow, the Designated Fall Guy who stepped down as head of state in January to accept the new constitutional position of Blame Czar. Musing on problems in Afghanistan, Obama blamed the "long years of drift" under his predecessor. The new president – OK, newish president – has been Drifter-in-Chief for almost a year but he's too busy speaking truth to the former power to get on top of the situation. It could be a while yet. In his more self-regarding moments, such as his speech to the United Nations, he gives the strong impression that the "long years of drift" began in 1776.


More on the NEA scandal

You may remember Kal Penn as the stoner from the Harold and Kumar movies. Now his hands are all over the NEA politicization scandal.......

Former actor and present White House associate director of public engagement Kalpen Modi was directly involved in planning the controversial conference call hosted by a National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) flack to encourage tax-supported artists to create propaganda for President Obama, according to emails obtained by Judicial Watch via a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.

The emails reveal that Modi worked with now-former NEA national communications director Yosif Sargant in planning the August 10 conference call that was first revealed by Andrew Breitbart's Big web site. Participants in the conference call were encouraged to use their talents to generate public support for the Obama agenda in Congress.

Here are four of the most illustrative emails, according to Judicial Watch:

Read the rest while you shake your head...............

ABC does the math

Posting its results late this afternoon at, the White House claimed 640,329 jobs have been created or saved because of the $159 billion in stimulus funds allocated as of Sept. 30.

Officials acknowledged the numbers were not exact, saying that states and localities that reported the numbers have made mistakes.

In recent days, the Recovery Act board has been reviewing all the numbers, with many inaccurate ones having been posted. California's San Joaquin Regional Rail Commission received $5 million in stimulus funds to hire workers to build addition train track for the Union Pacific Railroad in an economically tarnished spot of the Golden State.

Brian Schmidt, director of planning and programming for the commission said that his staff originally reported to the Obama administration that the stimulus money saved 250 jobs. Then, realizing they had mistakenly double credited, they later changed that to 125 jobs. Tuesday, they updated it again to 74 jobs.

Ed DeSeve, senior advisor to the president for Recovery Act implementation, said he'd been "scrubbing" the job estimates so much since they came it at the beginning of the month that he now has "dishpan hands and my fingers are worn to the nub."

White House officials heralded the unparalleled transparency in reporting job numbers to the public, but acknowledged there is no consistent standard across states or localities, or among federal agencies giving out stimulus funds, in differentiating between a “saved” job and a “created” job.

The White House argues that the actual job number is actually larger than 640,000 -- closer to 1 million jobs when one factors in stimulus jobs added in October and, more importantly, jobs created indirectly, such as "the waitress who's still on the job," Vice President Biden said today.

So let's see. Assuming their number is right -- 160 billion divided by 1 million. Does that mean the stimulus costs taxpayers $160,000 per job?

Jared Bernstein, chief economist and senior economic advisor to the vice president, called that "calculator abuse."

He said the cost per job was actually $92,000 -- but acknowledged that estimate is for the whole stimulus package as of the end of 2010.


CBS: Administration's Trillion-Dollar 'Stimulus' Claims "Hard to Believe"

That should piss off the Obamunists

The most ethical congress ehhhhverrr

The House ethics committee announced Thursday it is investigating two California Democratic lawmakers, but its embarrassed leaders then had to explain that other members—named in a confidential memo that a hacker posted online—may have committed no wrongdoing.

The committee said it is investigating whether Rep. Maxine Waters used her influence to help a bank in which her husband owned stock, and whether the couple benefited as a result. Separately, the panel is investigating whether Rep. Laura Richardson failed to disclose required information on her financial disclosure forms and received special treatment from a lender.


Happy anniversary

Last summer, I had every intention of shutting down the blog. The only reason I came back was an excerpt from a speech by Charles Krauthammer where he said "someone needs to defend the truth".

None the less, taxmanblog is officially three years old today. Each year, I try to take on something new in my life; one year it was ballroom dance lessons, another year it was taking up the saxophone, another year it was running a marathon, another was reading the Bible etc... This blog was started in October, 2006 in anticipation of my new thing for 2007.

The problem of trying new things you run out of time for the old things you enjoy. I really want to attempt playing my sax professionally and I really need to get my fat ass back in shape.

Regardless, I intend to keep the blog going until I feel like people are starting to get it.

Some facts about the blog....

- Wikio has this blog ranked 3969 out of 189965 which is in the top 2.1% of blogs.

- Our first post was an endorsement for Ken Blackwell for governor. Kind of weird how a racist conservative would endorse a black guy.

- Coldplay still sucks. That's not a fact about the blog...... just a fact.

- I've had over 5000 posts to date; over four posts a day.

- The average Weekly Influence Ranking as calculated by Blog the News Ohio is 5 which is one of the higher independent blogs (not supported by a newspaper or a labor union).

- We've been linked by Real Clear Politics, the WSJ, CNN, The Huffington Post and Doug Ross.

I would like to thank Midas for his help. Currently, the official talking point is that Midas is on sabatical. Actually, it's more of a wildcat strike since I've told Midas he can only do one Coldplay post per week.

I would like to thank readers Jeremy, Becky, Tim, Bernie, and Mark who have funneled articles to me. That makes my job so much easier in so many ways.

For now, we'll keep trudging along and defending the truth.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Getting 24 minutes out of his 15 minutes of fame

Another celebrity news whore poses nude.....

Yes, (celebrity whore name here is going full frontal in his upcoming Playgirl spread, which shoots on Nov. 16 (the same day Sarah Palin is set to appear on The Oprah Winfrey Show).

But don't get the wrong idea.

"Posing for Playgirl, a lot of people are going to look at it as not [presenting] a good image, but we're going to do it tastefully,"

Riiiiiiggggght. Because nothing says good taste like a Playgirl photo shoot.

Will Andrew Sullivan buy a copy to check it out?

More if you're not disgusted enough already.

And you want these guys to run health care?

Cash for Clunkers.......

A total of 690,000 new vehicles were sold under the Cash for Clunkers program last summer, but only 125,000 of those were vehicles that would not have been sold anyway, according to an analysis released Wednesday by the automotive Web site

Still, auto sales contributed heavily to the economy's expansion in the third quarter, adding 1.7 percentage points to the nation's gross domestic product growth.

The Cash for Clunkers program gave car buyers rebates of up to $4,500 if they traded in less fuel-efficient vehicles for new vehicles that met certain fuel economy requirements. A total of $3 billion was allotted for those rebates.

The average rebate was $4,000. But the overwhelming majority of sales would have taken place anyway at some time in the last half of 2009, according to That means the government ended up spending about $24,000 each for those 125,000 additional vehicle sales.


AP now on the Obamunist enemy list

The Obamunists didn't like the AP story reporting the truth.......
The Obama administration on Thursday slammed a report from The Associated Press alleging the government had overstated by thousands the number of jobs it has created or saved with federal contracts under President Obama's $787 billion recovery program.

The White House seized on an initial report from a government oversight board weeks ago that claimed federal contracts awarded to businesses under the recovery plan already had helped pay for more than 30,000 jobs. The administration said the number was evidence that the stimulus program had exceeded early expectations toward reaching the president's promise of creating or saving 3.5 million jobs by the end of next year.

But the 30,000 figure is overstated by thousands -- at the very least by nearly 5,000, or one in six, based on AP's limited review of some of the contracts -- because some federal agencies and recipients of the money provided incorrect job counts. The review found some counts were more than 10 times as high as the actual number of jobs; some jobs were credited to stimulus spending when, in fact, none were produced.

Within minutes of the publication of AP's story, the White House released a statement at 12:15 a.m. Thursday that it said was the "real facts" about how jobs were counted in the stimulus data distributed two weeks ago.

Here's an idea for the Obamunists, instead of your staff doing nothing but reading newspapers, how about reading an Afghan strategy or two.


Speaker Pelosi Denies Public Access to Health Care Public Plan Announcement

Governments lie?

From the AP of all places.........
The federal government overstated by thousands the number of jobs created or saved with contracts awarded to businesses under President Barack Obama's economic recovery program, according to an Associated Press review of employment data in the plan's first progress report.
For example:

• A company working with the Federal Communications Commission reported that stimulus money paid for 4,231 jobs, when about 1,000 were produced.

• A Georgia community college reported creating 280 jobs with recovery money, but none was created from stimulus spending.

• A Florida child care center said its stimulus money saved 129 jobs but used the money on raises for existing employees. -- More.

Well, doesn't stimulating skepticism account for something?


FOX News Panel -- Charles Krauthammer Says Barack Obama's Attacks On Bush are "Disgusting"

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Ohio Issue 2

I've heard lots of pro and con ads regarding Ohio Issue 2. The issue establishes a board to oversee livestock issues for Ohio farmers.

On it's face, it seems like the kind of issue conservatives would vote against; more government to tell Ohio farmers what to do.

But I started to read of farmers who were for the legislation. Why? Because farmers are preemptively setting up a board with people familiar with farming as opposed to a board loaded with the PETA and humane society types (as is being done on these issues in other states) .

Still not certain I went to two sources to see what they thought; Andy's Angle says "Yes"; Progress Ohio says "No".

So that's pretty much all the information I need on the issue.

Vote YES ON 2.

Political IQ

So which of the two major political parties has a better understanding of the issues and knowledge of government?

According to this Pew Research quiz, here's a breakdown as to the percentage who correctly answered these questions (take the quiz for yourself).

Clearly, democrats have more dumb asses than republicans. Is that surprising?

Obama Pledges to Put Health Care Negotiations on C-SPAN, White House Enemies List

Life in "Progress" City

From the city of Richmond CA, who hasn't had a conservative run the city since conquistadors ran the terrain......
Three more people have been arrested in connection with the gang rape and beating of a 15-year-old girl outside her high school homecoming dance in an attack that has generated widespread outrage.

A man and two boys were arrested late Tuesday, including 21-year-old Salvador Rodriguez of Richmond, Calif., and two teens, 16 and 17. They were each booked on one count of gang rape and likely face other charges including robbery and kidnapping.

"These are people who played a significant role in the incident," Richmond Police Lt. Mark Gagan said Wednesday. "I'm confident that more arrests will be made."

The arrests bring to five the number of people taken into custody in the attack that occurred Saturday night at Richmond High School, located in the San Francisco Bay area. The attacks and its aftermath have rattled Richmond, Calif., a crime-ridden city of about 120,000 in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Police believe as many as 10 people ranging in age from 15 to mid-20s attacked the girl for more than two hours at a dimly lit area near benches Saturday night. As many as two dozen people saw the rape without notifying police.

What's so "progressive" about gang rapes on school property?


Bill O'Reilly: President Doesn't Understand That Radical People Are Not Acceptable to Americans

FOX News Panel -- Charles Krauthammer Says Barack Obama's Attacks On Bush are "Disgusting"

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Unhinged Libtalker Pins Blame For Obama's Failures On Cheney

Alan Grayson vs. the K Street Whores

From the party of civility

Life in "Progress" State

From the empire state of New York, who hasn't had a conservative run the state since some Indians got a deal on some beads.......

New Yorkers are fleeing the state and city in alarming numbers -- and costing a fortune in lost tax dollars, a new study shows.

More than 1.5 million state residents left for other parts of the United States from 2000 to 2008, according to the report from the Empire Center for New York State Policy. It was the biggest out-of-state migration in the country.

The vast majority of the migrants, 1.1 million, were former residents of New York City -- meaning one out of seven city taxpayers moved out.

"The Empire State is being drained of an invaluable resource -- people," the report said.

What's worse is that the families fleeing New York are being replaced by lower-income newcomers, who consequently pay less in taxes.

Overall, the ex-New Yorkers earn about 13 percent more than those who moved into the state, the study found.

And it should be no surprise that the city -- and Manhattan in particular -- suffered the biggest loss in terms of taxable income.

Who would have thunk it?

What's so "progressive" about the Exodus?

There went John Galt..................


Help small business by helping big business

Apparently, the Obamunists want to help small business by making it rain with some TARP money.

I'm going to clue you folks in on what helps small businesses and that is large and prosperous big businesses.

As a small business owner and an adviser to small businesses I can tell you without hesitation that most small businesses exist because big businesses buy stuff from small companies; because employees make more money in large companies who in buy stuff from small businesses; because many small businesses don't have to offer extravagant benefit plans to employees who have a spouse who works for a big company and thus gets nice benefits.

Think of it like schools of pilot fish who swim under sharks for protection and food.

Drive around any big plant in this country and you'll see bars and restaurants surrounding those plants where the employees go to have a cold one after the shift ends.

Yeah, give me more big business anyday thank you very much.

Life in "Redville"

The past few weekends, the Gekko's have done a few day trips to some of God's country here in Ohio.

Let me offer, if you get a chance to go to Hocking Hills, Clifton Gorge, Hueston Woods during the color change you really have to make the trek.

As we've gone on these trips, I really can't help but wax nostalgic as we stop into small towns like Nelsonville or Cedarville and really feel at ease in those communities.

It's funny how growing up, all I could think about was getting out of Lancaster into the city.

Ahhhh, the city, with it's lively sophistication........... and crime and poverty and unemployment and horrible schools.

As I've grown older, I've started to learn that all those small town lessons, the things eastern elite ridiculed Sarah Palin for, is where the brains are. Because there's a true understanding of human nature aka common sense.

So when I hear of Harvard University losing billions on derivative swaps all I can hear is my dad telling me "if you can't write a deal on the back of a cocktail napkin, it's too complicated"

Or one of my farmer clients who joked about the cash for clunkers "So we're going to take perfectly good cars and demolish them so now poor people won't have cars to buy. That sounds like a good idea".

Or another client who was watching this for sale sign going up next door to his house. "They're putting that sign in real deep, that tells me they don't plan to move it anytime soon!"

Or this small business owner who told me "now they're going to penalize small businesses for not offering health insurance, and the penalty will be cheaper than the insurance, and the workers get coverage without all the paperwork, let me guess what those businesses are going to do".

Of course, you do not always run into small town sensibility in say, Yellow Springs, where old hippies move to get ready for the next revolution.

I've noticed that the signs on the shops have gone from "products made in this store do not come from sweatshops" to "products made in this store come from vendors who pay a living wage to their workers".

It's funny how none of them seem to mind that I may have made my money exploiting the poor while I look at a $125 vase. Or that the lovely Mrs. Gekko makes her money in big medical as she's contemplating the purchase of a $200 jacket made of hemp.

Regardless, if you want a life surrounded by common sense pack up and head to the hills.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Life in "Progress" City

Shakes, over at Cesspool of Humanity, linked this blog in reference to my Life in "Progress"City post referencing Detroit.

In his post, he referenced an excellent read from 1998 related to the demise of our once great American cities.

Ten of America’s 25 largest cities have lost population during the 1990s, including Boston, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Milwaukee, Chicago, and, of course, Detroit. Most of these cities have been steadily losing population for a generation while their suburbs thrive. For example, as Atlanta’s population has declined by 19 percent since 1960, its suburbs have grown by 396 percent. As the table on page 15 shows, this pattern is repeated in many major cities across the country. The decline of these older central cities cannot be attributed to a faltering economy in any of these metropolitan areas. Nor is it due to "white flight," for blacks have also fled the central cities in large numbers. The black populations of Chicago, Cleveland, Philadelphia, and St. Louis have all fallen since 1970. Washington, D.C., has 140,000 fewer black residents than it had in 1970.

Our major cities were once magnets of opportunity for low-income people; now they are places where the poor are isolated from opportunity. In 1960, central cities housed roughly one-quarter of America’s poor. Today they contain nearly half. Urban unemployment is twice the national rate and median household income in central cities is typically half the level of surrounding suburbs. Job growth followed the middle class to the suburbs: Nearly 80 percent of all new jobs today are being generated there. The amount of suburban office space surpassed that of downtown office space in the early 1980s, and is now one-third higher (see chart on page 16). "Most new economic growth," writes Joel Kotkin, an expert on urban affairs, "is inversely related to its distance from the inner city." George Gilder reflects the general popular mood when he writes that "cities are dirty, dangerous, and pestilential."

The overriding cause of the nation’s urban calamity is modern liberal social policy. Big cities, the political strongholds of liberalism, were supposed to be laboratories for the Great Society expansion of the welfare state. Instead, cities became the principal victims of liberal ideology. Three failures of liberalism combined to generate a ruinous urban policy: the failure to nurture the sources of economic growth, the failure to understand urban neighborhoods, and the failure to appreciate the importance of a strong moral order.

A couple of weeks ago I met up with some old buddies from a large CPA firm I worked at in Dayton.

When I worked for the firm, I was just out of school and fabulously liberal. In fact, one of the guys in the firm told me that if the partners ever found out that I voted for Howard Metzenbaum, I'd probably be fired.

None the less, at this reunion, this person found out that I was a recovering liberal and asked me what caused the life change.

In all honesty, what happened was I started questioning my faith in the religion known as liberalism. Namely, I simply asked the question "if liberalism is such a superior world view over conservatism, why are our cities in such a horrible condition".

I've been doing this blog for four years now. I've challenged liberals to answer this question for me endlessly. Not one liberal has ever had the balls or the knowledge to answer that question. Which is why I've come to believe there is something cognitively wrong with any liberal who read these challenges at yet moves on believing in the cult known as liberalism.

What else could it be?

Congressman calls female lobbyist whore

From the party of civility

Kennedy on health care

Patrick Kennedy, D - Doucheville, had this to say about the Catholic Church......

“I can’t understand for the life of me how the Catholic Church could be against the biggest social justice issue of our time, where the very dignity of the human person is being respected by the fact that we’re caring and giving health care to the human person—that right now we have 50 million people who are uninsured,” Kennedy told when asked about a letter the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) had sent to members of Congress stating the bishops' position on abortion funding in the health-care bill.

“You mean to tell me the Catholic Church is going to be denying those people life saving health care? I thought they were pro-life?” said Kennedy. “If the church is pro-life, then they ought to be for health care reform because it’s going to provide health care that are going to keep people alive. So this is an absolute red herring and I don’t think that it does anything but to fan the flames of dissent and discord and I don’t think it’s productive at all."

Let me clue Kennedy here on something.

Before the Kennedy clan bottled it first bootlegged whiskey, this country was covered in hospitals run by the church; giving the poor and in firmed health care. Just where does he think names like St. Anne's, St. Elizabeth's, St. Luke come from?

What about the other religious hospitals like here in Cincinnati..... Jewish, Christ and Bethesda, who's leadership didn't wait for 200 years for the government to take care of the poor before they decided it was an important mission for their faiths?

While we're on the church, how is it that the oldest schools in most communities originated from the missionary work of Christians? They didn't sit around and lobby ass hats like Kennedy to save the poor, the uneducated, the unwashed and the in firmed. They actually did something with their own resources; not those stolen from the populace.

So maybe Kennedy could take that fortune his family has amassed over the years and actually buy some poor people insurance instead of extracting it from others like people of faith have done for generations.


Who did he vote for? #221

Meet Andres Duque. Why is Mr. Duque in the news?

Andres Duque thought he got a real steal when he paid $125,000 for his Little Haiti condo. But four years later, similar units are selling for $35,000 and even less.

And so, faced with the prospect of being underwater on his mortgage -- owing more than the unit is worth -- for the next 20 years, Duque, 33, made what seemed to him like a rational choice: to cut and run.

He stopped paying the mortgage, basically forcing the lender to take the condo off his hands through foreclosure.

"I was able to pay off all my credit cards," said Duque, who is biding his time in the condo, waiting until they come and evict him. "In a way, it was the best thing that happened to me because all my income is not being consumed by this freaking monster of a debt."

Duque's game plan is known as a strategic default -- when borrowers walk away from loans, even if they can afford the payments.

So this past November, did this master mind vote for the Hope and Change candidate or the four more years of Bush candidate?


And we want these guys to run health care?

From that hotbed of conservative news stories, CBS, comes this hit piece on Medicare fraud.........

Of all the problems facing the United States right now, none are more important than health care.

President Obama says rising costs are driving huge federal budget deficits that imperil our future, and that there is enough waste and fraud in the system to pay for health care reform if it was eliminated.

At the center of both issues is Medicare, the government insurance program that provides health care to 46 million elderly and disabled Americans. But it also provides a rich and steady income stream for criminals who are constantly finding new ways to steal a sizable chunk of the half trillion dollars that are paid out each year in Medicare benefits.

In fact, Medicare fraud - estimated now to total about $60 billion a year - has become one of, if not the most profitable, crimes in America.

This story may raise your blood pressure, along with some troubling questions about our government's ability to manage a medical bureaucracy.

If you want to find Medicare fraud, the first place you should look is South Florida, where 60 Minutes and correspondent Steve Kroft were told it has pushed aside cocaine as the major criminal enterprise.

Watch the video and more.....


A must read piece by Stephen Hayes on the total political hackery of the Obamunists......

On October 18, White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel appeared on the Sunday morning talk shows and, in the process of answering questions about Barack Obama's strategy on Afghanistan, accused the Bush administration of failing to ask the most basic questions about that country and our war there.

The president is asking the questions that have never been asked on the civilian side, the political side, the military side, and the strategic side. What is the impact on the region? What can the Afghan government do or not do? Where are we on the police training? Who would be better doing the police training? Could that be something the Europeans do? Should we take the military side? Those are the questions that have not been asked. And before you commit troops  .  .  .  before you make that decision, there's a set of questions that have to have answers that have never been asked. And it's clear after eight years of war, that's basically starting from the beginning, and those questions never got asked.

Then, after former vice president Dick Cheney used a speech on October 22 to accuse the Obama administration of "dithering" on Afghanistan, White House spokesman Robert Gibbs responded by claiming that the Bush administration did not care about U.S. troops.

"What Vice President Cheney calls 'dithering,' President Obama calls his solemn responsibility to the men and women in uniform and to the American public," said Gibbs. "I think we've all seen what happens when somebody doesn't take that responsibility seriously." Gibbs went on, calling Cheney's comments "curious" and claiming that a request for troops from General David McKiernan during the final year of the Bush administration "sat on desks in this White House, including the vice president's, for more than eight months."

So there are two separate and very serious charges that Obama White House officials are making about their predecessors. First, that the Bush administration had no real Afghanistan policy and failed for eight years to ask the important questions about the war there. And second, that the Bush administration ignored requests from commanders on the ground to increase troops in Afghanistan.

Bush administration officials were furious.

"The idea that we just sat on our f--ing asses--it's really a slander," says one senior Bush administration official. "It's just not credible that we didn't take this seriously."

In fact, the Bush administration did ask those questions. From mid-September to mid-November 2008, a National Security Council team, under the direction of General Doug Lute, conducted an exhaustive review of Afghanistan policy. The interagency group included high-ranking officials from the State Department, the National Security Council, the CIA, the office of the director of national intelligence, the office of the vice president, the Pentagon, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Its objective was to assess U.S. -policy on Afghanistan, integrating a simultaneous military review being conducted by CENTCOM, so as to present President Bush with a series of recommendations on how best to turn around the deteriorating situation there. The Lute group met often--sometimes twice daily--in a secure conference room in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building. (The group used the room so frequently that other national security working groups that had been meeting there were required to find other space including, occasionally, the White House Situation Room.)

When will the press recogize that voting present, is no longer an effective leadership skill?

Read the rest........

While Rome burns II

Do you remember the good old days, when the world hated George Bush and NATO was all set to help us out once The Lord, Obama, was elected as leader of citizens in the world.

Well, it's not turning out that way.

In fact, while our beloved leader continues to twiddle his thumbs as our troops are getting pummeled in Afghanistan, NATO has decided to back the plan of General McChrystal.

During a trip to Germany and the Czech Republic earlier this month, I was surprised to find that many of the Europeans I spoke to seemed more cognizant than the Obama administration of how important it was to commit the resources necessary to win in Afghanistan.

This has not always been the case. The Bush administration tried repeatedly to obtain increased troop commitments from NATO allies and was often rebuffed. The soldiers that were sent were often of limited utility because of political restrictions placed on the areas they would deploy to as well as their rules of engagement.

In its nine months in office, the Obama administration has been unable to turn the president’s vaunted popularity in much of the world into major new international commitments of troops. Now, just as the president is publicly agonizing over what the U.S. strategy in Afghanistan should be, some European leaders seem willing to consider making increased commitments to Afghanistan. In Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government is considering increasing the size of the German contingent in the country when the deployment’s mandate is renewed later this year, something that is nothing short of amazing given how publicly unpopular the German presence in Afghanistan is. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced last week that he was sending an additional 500 troops to the country.

Now, you may know General McChrystal as the military leader appointed by the Obamumists to handle things in Afghanistan only to have him take a back seat while the mull the plans of the military genius aka Joe Biden.


Life in "Progress" City

From Detroit again, where apparently not only do you get no city services for high taxes, you get the privilege of funding your own law enforcement..........

Shortly before noon on a recent Monday, T.J. Cooper sat in his red pickup, showing off his digital camera. He clicked through pictures he had taken a few weeks earlier of a man driving a truck full of radiators stolen from a vacant home here in Indian Village, one of Detroit's last middle-class neighborhoods. No one, Cooper notes wryly, likes having his picture taken. "They try to hide their face. Or break your camera. Or," he says, driving up a tree-lined street, "break you." Minutes later, Cooper passes the same man, in the same truck, apparently scoping out another house.

Cooper, 29, is a private-security detective, one of many who patrol once prosperous enclaves like Palmer Woods, Boston-Edison and Indian Village. With the city's police force cut more than 25%, private security appears to be one of Detroit's few growth industries. Local precincts are overwhelmed with shootings and other violent crime, leaving companies that supply home protection with long customer waiting lists. "People put a premium on security when unemployment and crime go up," says Larry Dusing, founder of Dusing Security & Surveillance, which has expanded into three neighborhoods. (See pictures of Detroit's beautiful, horrible decline.)

Crime weighs heavily on the minds of Detroit's middle class, although it's an issue few residents want to discuss. In some neighborhoods, armed guards stand watch outside houses of worship; in September a pastor shot a man trying to rob his church. In others, street barricades have been set up to help deter potential thieves.

A short, plump Michigan native, Cooper worked in store security before joining Dusing about eight years ago. Now he manages Dusing's patrols, driving around Indian Village in his truck with an orange light bar on the top. He wears a black baseball cap reading security and a bulletproof vest but travels unarmed, partly for liability reasons. He keeps his camera, equipped with a massive telephoto lens, near his lap.

An Indian Village security guard's job is much like that of any cop on the beat. That afternoon Cooper investigated a report of suspicious activity from one of the neighborhood's few markets. (The suspects, sitting in a brown minivan, turned out to be selling state-issued cards used to buy food.) He continued his patrol, eyeing the men walking up and down the street. "If you notice a guy stopping and staring" at a house, Cooper says, "he's obviously up to no good." Especially suspicious are people who walk up to homes and stuff flyers into doors. Sometimes they are testing to see whether a door is unlocked or are casing the property for valuables. "A lot of times we'll see the same car come back three or four times in a single shift." (See more on TIME's Detroit blog.)

The community of Indian Village hired Dusing in 2003, after a rash of property crimes. An estimated 15% of the neighborhood's homes are foreclosed, a result of the national real estate crisis, which has hit Detroit particularly hard. Vacant homes are an open invitation to burglars and vandals. Neighbors install motion sensors and curtains in them and maintain the lawns to make the properties appear occupied.

Members of the Historic Indian Village Association, a local residents' group, share the cost of private security — about $30 per household each month. Association president Doug Way, 42, moved to Detroit with his wife seven years ago and fell in love with Indian Village's 19th century manors, built for the city's emerging industrial barons. Footing the bill for private security is almost like paying an extra tax, he acknowledges, but it's worth the cost. The median sale price of homes in Detroit has plunged from $59,700 in August 2005 to $8,000 just two months ago. "You could argue that one reason the homes are less expensive in the city is the level of services isn't as high," he says. "If there's some way we can make this a better place to live, these homes will actually be worth a lot more in the long term."

What's so "progressive" about paying for your own private security?

Thanks reader Becky.


A great gig if you can get it

Hey, if you are an AIG executive, you need to get a gig at Fannie Mae, where apparently, losing billions of taxpayer dollars doesn't get you fired or pay reduction but a raise.....

The pay package given to Freddie Mac's new chief financial officer should have sent a message from Washington to corporate America about how executive compensation standards must change. Instead, it did just the opposite.

The government-controlled mortgage finance company is giving CFO Ross Kari compensation worth as much as $5.5 million. That includes an almost $2 million cash signing bonus and a generous salary that could top $2.3 million. (emphasis added.)

The Federal Housing Finance Agency, which oversees Freddie Mac, approved the pay package. A spokeswoman pointed to a statement that justified the agency's approval of the pay, which was done in part because the amount was comparable to what others in the financial services industry make.

Apparently, they didn't clear that through Ken Feinberg, pay czar and the final arbiter of what's fair.

Thanks reader Jeremy.

"Outrage" Documentary Outs Anti Gay Politicians Who Are Gay

The lovely Mrs Gekko and I watched this documentary last weekend.

What I find most interesting is how the people most inclined to chant "stay out of our bedrooms" are the first people to out someone's sexual behavior. Not only are these voyeuristic perverts more than interested in someone else's bedroom they're hell bent on making sure everyone else knows what goes on in others bedrooms.

Frankly, I don't know if Charlie Crist if gay or not and I don't care (although that would probably explain why he's such a snappy dresser). But then again, I'm just one of those Neanderthal conservatives.

Life in "Progress" City

From the motor city of Detroit, who hasn't had a conservative run the city since the first combustible engine was invented......
In a crowded ballroom next to a bankrupt casino, what remains of the Detroit property market was being picked over by speculators and mostly discarded.

After five hours of calling out a drumbeat of "no bid" for properties listed in an auction book as thick as a city phone directory, the energy of the county auctioneer began to flag.

"OK," he said. "We only have 300 more pages to go."

There was tired laughter from investors ready to roll the dice on a city that has become a symbol of the collapse of the U.S. auto industry, pressures on the industrial middle-class and intractable problems for the urban poor.

On the auction block in Detroit: almost 9,000 homes and lots in various states of abandonment and decay from the tidy owner-occupied to the burned-out shell claimed by squatters.

Taken together, the properties seized by tax collectors for arrears and put up for sale last week represented an area the size of New York's Central Park. Total vacant land in Detroit now occupies an area almost the size of Boston, according to a Detroit Free Press estimate.

What's so "Progressive" about $500 homes?


While Rome burns

It's nice to see that while Gen. McChrystal is tapping his foot waiting for approval of his strategy in Afghanistan or some version of a Biden plan, the president has plenty of time for some links........

President Obama is golfing at Ft. Belvoir today with Melody Barnes, the director of the White House Domestic Policy Council.

This is the president's 24th round of golf since his inauguration, according to the meticulous records of CBS News' Mark Knoller.

And, interestingly, it's the first time the president has played with a woman.

Usually these outings are men only.

But today's round of golf comes after some questions raised by the media about what some critics say is a too-fratty atmosphere in the White House, a place where the president's closest advisers -- chief of staff Rahm Emanuel, senior adviser David Axelrod, and press secretary Robert Gibbs -- are known by women at the White House as "the Boys." That's a perception fed with lower-level aides like personal assistant Reggie Love and trip director Marvin Nicholson who have close personal relationships with the president and play basketball and golf with him.

On one level, this is much ado about nothing. No one is alleging discrimination or an uncomfortable work place. White House aides point to the myriad women in positions of power -- Barnes, senior adviser Valerie Jarrett, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Communications Director Anita Dunn, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, UN ambassador Dr. Susan Rice, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, and many others as evidence to rebut any notion that the White House should stamp "Beta Omega" above its columns.

Where's all the critics who were up in arms when Bush got a few rounds in "while our boys were dying in Iraq".

24 times while he's been in office? What's he doing? Tuning up for the seniors tour?

Sunday, October 25, 2009