Thursday, June 23, 2011

Are Employers Planning on Eliminating Health Care Coverage For Employees?

More of the unexpected

These media types would be great to take to a theater to watch a horror movie.

Apparently, they'd be the only people shocked when a couple of teenagers get axe murdered while making out.

New claims for unemployment benefits rose more than expected last week, a government report showed on Thursday, suggesting little improvement in the labor market this month after employment stumbled in May.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits climbed 9,000 to a seasonally adjusted 429,000, the Labor Department said. The prior week's figure was revised up to 420,000.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast claims to edge up to 415,000 from a previously reported count of 414,000.


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Life in "Progress" City - St. Louis edition

In the midst of Marine week with tanks, guns, and heavy weapons parked on lawns all over downtown, the Mayor is wondering how two unarmed prowlers out-fought and robbed three Marines on the street.

Police report that two Marines in their early 20s were walking near the Soldier’s Memorial downtown around 2:30 Monday morning, when two suspects in their 20s approached. According to the police report, the suspects tried to sell the Marines jewelry, then and argument led to a fight.

Police say one of the suspects punched a Marine. Another suspect reportedly took a pocket knife from the other Marine and poked him with it, causing a minor cut. The Marines told police the suspects took one of their wallets and ran away.


The Party of Wall Street (hint.... it ain't republicans)

The conventional wisdom has always been that big money Wall Streeters were big time supporters of the GOP.

What is the over/under on the number of days it takes for a CBS news report that exposes the truth?

The man who once labeled Wall Street honchos "fat cats" deserving of scorn for their role in the 2008 financial crisis will be back in town tomorrow, pressing the fat-cat flesh at the swanky Upper East Side restaurant Daniel for a $35,800-a-head fund-raiser. A number of top Wall Street executives will show -- but some faces will be missing.

I'm told JP Morgan chief Jamie Dimon won't be there -- nor former Obama supporters like Lloyd Blankfein and Gary Cohn of Goldman Sachs, Brian Moynihan of BofA and John Mack of Morgan Stanley, nor even Larry Fink of the money-management firm Blackrock.

After two years of high unemployment, soaring federal debt and business-killing regulation, Wall Street looks to be finally tiring of Obamanomics.

The first cracks in Wall Street's relationship with Obama came with last year's passage of the Dodd-Frank "reform" law, which slammed the financial industry with new regulations (still being written) that have everyone afraid to make any aggressive moves. Last fall, the Wall Street firms that supported Frank, Dodd & Co. over the years and lined up in unprecedented fashion behind candidate Obama in 2008 started to plow money into the coffers of Republican candidates for Congress.

Many (me included) thought Wall Street was merely hedging its bets, hoping divided government would prove most profitable for its future. After all, the banks made a ton of money underwriting all the debt Obama has run up in massively expanding government.

Hypocrisy - liberal style

During the whole Weinergate Sextcapades, one of the recurring themes about the the pass liberals were willing to give Weiner was that he wasn't a sexual hypocrite. Presumably meaning that if you are against same sex marriage your "hypocrisy"is what costs you your job.... not the sin.

Forget for a minute that toe tapping in a department store bathroom and support for gay marriage is a big time non sequitur, I want to know why liberals gave a pass to other liberals for their hypocrisy.

How about caring for the poor? Joe Biden says he's a champion for the poor, yet gives less than 1% of his income to charity.

How about the environment? The leader of the Branch Gorvidian movement, Al Gore, owns how many homes? (nine). Or how about his disciple, Tom Friedman, who squeezes into an 11,000 square foot home while preaching to us about limiting our carbon footprint.

Let's not forget the champion of women who have been accused of rape (Clinton) or death (Kennedy).

Or how about Bono who's always hitting up governments to support African relief causes all the while dodging taxes himself........

Last year, Bono's nonprofit ONE foundation was at the center of semi-scandal when it was revealed that in 2008 the organization raised $14,993,873 in public donations — of which only $184,732 (or just over ONE percent) was distributed to charities. Where did the rest go? Well, more than $8 million went to salaries for executives and employees at ONE. In response to the fusillade of criticism following these revelations, ONE spokesman Oliver Buston explained, "We don't provide programs on the ground. We're an advocacy and campaigning organization."

Much of the "advocacy" is directed at governments; organizations like ONE aggressively lobby world leaders to contribute "aid" (read: tax dollars) to anti-poverty and environmental causes. Yet the U2 organization has gone out of its way to reduce its own tax burden — in 2006, the band moved part of its business operation from Ireland to take advantage of generous tax breaks offered to artists in the Netherlands.

But I guess it's all OK as long as they're not republican.

Life in "Progress" County - Cook County edition

The average Chicago household now owes a staggering $63,525 to cover local government debt, according to Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas.

Suburbanites are deeply in the red, too, with the average household owing $32,901, according to the treasurer.

Among the biggest reasons: $25 billion in unfunded pension liability.

Who the hell runs this pension? Bernie Madoff?


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Life in "Progress" City - San Francisco edition

Here's some fun facts. OK, maybe not so fun depending on your perspective.

The average retiree from San Francisco city government earns an annual pension of $46,272, according to the San Francisco Employees' Retirement System. The average retiree who worked at least 30 years in city government earns an annual pension of $76,981.

The average pension for a retiree from the fire department is $108,552. From the police department? $95,016. And everybody else? $41,136.

The figures show most retirees aren't getting anywhere near the fat packages that outrage many city residents - like the $264,000 pension paid to former Police Chief Heather Fong last year.

But city retirees are doing pretty well compared to working San Franciscans. Census data shows the median family income in the city is $86,546. Per capita income is $44,373.

NIMBY - John Conyers

As I noted in a previous post, I'm a NIMBY guy when it comes to government housing programs.

It looks like John Conyers is one of those neighbors..................

Detroit Neighborhood: John Conyers House is an Eyesore:

Ranking Freedom in the 50 States

The ULTIMATE SARAH PALIN is a Dumb, Dumber, Dumbest, STUPID MORON Bitch ...


If you're around me for very long, you'll know that I'm not a NIMBY (not in my back yard) guy. If my neighbor wants to put a cell tower on his property, go for it. If Duke Energy wants to build a nuke plant a mile from home, I say get 'er done. If Rumpke wants to put a landfill three blocks up wind from my place, I'm not protesting, I'm moving out.

In fact, when I lived in the city, I was presented a petition to sign to block a group of mentally handicapped guys from moving into a four family two doors down from me. The petitioner told me they would bring sex offenders and criminals to the home. I told the guy he should be ashamed of himself. All those guys ever did was sit on their stoop and smoke cigarettes. They didn't bother our neighborhood one bit.

In my mind, we all have to sacrifice to have things like cell phones, sewage systems, power plants, etc. So if I don't like what's going in. I'm not protesting; I'm moving. These things have to go somewhere and if I don't like its proximity to me, I'll simply move.

But if you want me to show up for A NIMBY protest, just tell me that government housing is coming near to my palatial estate in "Redville".

Why? Because the people in my neighborhood chose to live there for a variety of reasons and they've earned privilege of choosing where they want to live. Seriously, why should someone get a free pass to live in my neighborhood?

I don't get a free upgrade to live in an exclusive Cincinnati suburb like Indian Hill.

So I can appreciate the crap that the people in Green Township are going through to keep government housing out of their community.

Of course, liberal types would accuse these residents of being bigots because they don't want derelicts living in their neighborhood.

But just read the words of someone getting government housing of what they're trying to escape..........

Charlyce Young used to sleep on the floor in case a stray bullet came through the bedroom window.

"It was like living in Iraq," she said, of her former Winton Terrace home.

Now who wants that shit in their neighborhood? In fact, many people earn what they can to get the hell out of that mess.

Or how about the opinion of a woman who works at CMHA....

"They think that when people move from trash, they bring trash with them," said Lacretia Johnson, a former member of the housing authority's board who lives in public housing in Green Township. "That's not necessarily so."
"That's not necessarily so?" Are you serious?

Mechanically, you're asking residents to give money to people so they can live, not for subsistence, but to live their lifestyles.

Imagine a total stranger coming to your door and asking "Excuse me. I can't afford to live in this neighborhood, but if you give me $100 a month, I should be able to swing it. Oh and by the way, we may or may not bring our trash with us."

How many people would do that? Zero! That's how many.

The fact is. It should suck to be poor. See if you are poor and don't want to be, it should be a great motivational tool for you.

I'll be happy to let government housing in my neighborhood the very day the government gives me a check to move into Wyoming where they have a lot better schools and city services than I do here. But I'm not holding my breath.


Life in "Progress" City - Cincinnati edition

If you've ever had to drive across the Brent Spence bridge in Cincinnati (the I71-I75 bridge that crosses the Ohio River), you know that you take your life in your own hands.

The structure has already been determined to be design obsolete but in my humble opinion it will be the next Minneapolis bridge disaster. It had stimulus money written all over it except no one did a damn thing to get the replacement of this death trap started.

So there it sits every day becoming more dilapidated while City of Cincinnati officials spend all of their political capital on a one mile trolley system.

So do you think Mayor Mark Mallory made a call after reading this?

Two lanes of northbound and southbound Interstate 71/75 are closed this morning because of debris falling from Brent Spence Bridge.

The debris was reported about 10:15 a.m. falling from the southbound lanes onto the northbound lanes, Covington dispatchers said.

Probably not.

Life in "Redville"

Newsweek Magazine did a ranking of the best public high schools in the country.

Out of curiosity, if you were to take the parents to all the students in these schools as a single constituency, which presidential contender carried that group?

This blogger made the following notation.......

When it come to excellence in education, red states rule — at least according to a panel of experts assembled by Tina Brown’s Newsweek. Using a set of indicators ranging from graduation rate to college admissions and SAT scores, the panel reviewed data from high schools all over the country to find the best public schools in the country.

The results make depressing reading for the teacher unions: the very best public high schools in the country are heavily concentrated in red states.

Three of the nation’s ten best public high schools are in Texas — the no-income tax, right-to-work state that blue model defenders like to characterize as America at its worst. Florida, another no-income tax, right-to-work state long misgoverned by the evil and rapacious Bush dynasty, has two of the top ten schools.

Newsweek isn’t alone with these shocking results. Another top public school list, compiled by the Washington Post, was issued in May. Texas and Florida rank number one and number two on that list’s top ten as well.


Life in "Progress" County - Hamilton County edition

From Hamilton County, Ohio, home of the city of Cincinnati.

What says "progressive" more than free love and sex and STD's.............

Hamilton County has a "mini-epidemic" of sexually-transmitted diseases, says the author of a new report gauging the region's health.

The county's rate of syphilis is almost nine times higher than the nation's, while gonorrhea and chlamydia rates are double and triple, respectively, the national rates, according to the report, "Indicators of Healthy Communities," released Monday.

"We don't like to talk about it, but we have a problem here. We have a horrible problem locally that we need to address," said Eddie Hooker, an emergency medicine physician and associate professor of health services administration at Xavier University.

In 2010, the incidence rate for syphilis in Hamilton County was 32 per 100,000, compared to 3.6 for the U.S. and 2.0 for Ohio.

For some reason, I've never feared an STD. As a backwoods, gun loving conservative, I must have a natural immunity to such diseases. Or maybe it's because I keep it in my pants.


Does prison time reduce crime rates?

Thanks reader Tim for the link....

“Crime Keeps on Falling, But Prisons Keep on Filling.” Conservative pundits have been poking fun at that headline ever since it appeared in The New York Times in 1997. For the law-and-order right, it typifies the clueless mind-set of elite liberals. Can they not comprehend that America’s soaring incarceration rate and the historic two-decade drop in crime that began in the mid-1990s might be connected?

The idea sounds straightforward enough: As we have put more people in jail, the violent crime rate has indeed dropped, from 758 victims per 100,000 people in 1991 to 429 in 2009. It’s intuitive to say that putting more murderers and rapists behind bars is the reason why. But on closer inspection, the causal link is far from clear.

In a series of studies published in 2009, the University of Missouri-St. Louis criminol-ogist Richard Rosenfeld and the SUNY-Albany sociologist Steven Messner found that during the last 15 years, states with lower incarceration rates saw bigger drops in crime, on average, than those with lock-’em-up policies. Moreover, the historic increase in the prison population began in the early 1980s, a decade after the crime rate began to rise and a decade before it started to fall. The incarceration rate increased by more than 100 percent in the 1980s, but violent crime still increased that decade, by 22 percent.

If it wasn’t incarceration, what caused the drop? There is no shortage of theories: Scholars have pointed to everything from the legalization of abortion to the prohibition of lead-based paints. Other theories credit America’s aging population (the vast majority of criminals are under 30), President Bill Clinton’s program to put more cops on the street, and either stronger gun control laws or an increase in gun carrying by law-abiding Americans.

The studies behind all these theories claim to produce statistically significant results. Could they all be right?


Global News - Vancouver riot participant apologizes

The spineless actions of a rioter showed up in his sniveling apology.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Life in "Progress" State - CA edition

They called it Paradise
The place to be
They watched the hazy sun
Sinking in the sea...........

John Galt's looking for a new address and it won't be the Golden State............

Today, California is experiencing the fastest rate of disinvestment events based on public domain information, closure notices to the state, and information from affected employees in the three years since a specialized tracking system was put into place.

Out-of-state economic development officials are traveling through the state to alert frustrated business owners and corporate executives to their friendlier business climate versus California's hostility toward commercial enterprises.

  • From Jan. 1 of this year through this morning, June 16, we have had 129 disinvestment events occur, an average of 5.4 per week.
  • For all of last year, we saw an average of 3.9 events per week.
  • Comparing this year thus far with 2009, when the total was 51 events, essentially averaging 1 per week, our rate today is more than 5 times what it was then.
The same tracking system has been in place throughout the three-year period.

Our losses are occurring at an accelerated rate. Also, no one knows the real level of activity because smaller companies are not required to file layoff notices with the state. A conservative estimate is that only 1 out of 5 company departures becomes public knowledge, which means California may suffer more than 1,000 disinvestment events this year. The capital directed to out-of-state or out-of-country, while difficult to calculate, is nonetheless in the billions of dollars.


Sunday, June 19, 2011

Who did she vote for? #18

Meet Francine Davis.

Why is she in the news?

Just watch the video

Teens Helped Unsupervised, Roaming Children in Jersey City:

Now in the last presidential election, did Francine vote for hope and change or four more years of Bush?


Life in "Progress" State - California edition

They called it Paradise
I don't know why
Somebody laid the mountains low
While the town got high

The roof on the three-bedroom Pasadena rental where Don Jones used to live seems unremarkable until he hands over the invoice showing what it cost: $103,443.

Fortunately for Jones, he didn't have to pay that. His landlords, California taxpayers, footed the bill.

The state Department of Transportation, which bought the houses on Jones' block decades ago to bulldoze for an extension of the 710 Freeway, also spent $103,472 to replace a roof across the street and $80,606 to install the one next-door, agency records show. On a nearby avenue, a once-grand house, now dilapidated, sports a $171,508 roof that was put on in 2006 even though nobody lived there.


Abortion - genocide against women

But I thought it was just a mass of protoplasm.............
In nature, 105 boys are born for every 100 girls. This ratio is biologically ironclad. Between 104 and 106 is the normal range, and that's as far as the natural window goes. Any other number is the result of unnatural events.

Yet today in India there are 112 boys born for every 100 girls. In China, the number is 121—though plenty of Chinese towns are over the 150 mark. China's and India's populations are mammoth enough that their outlying sex ratios have skewed the global average to a biologically impossible 107. But the imbalance is not only in Asia. Azerbaijan stands at 115, Georgia at 118 and Armenia at 120.

What is causing the skewed ratio: abortion. If the male number in the sex ratio is above 106, it means that couples are having abortions when they find out the mother is carrying a girl. By Ms. Hvistendahl's counting, there have been so many sex-selective abortions in the past three decades that 163 million girls, who by biological averages should have been born, are missing from the world. Moral horror aside, this is likely to be of very large consequence.