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A negotiated Clinton-Romney candidacy?

Has anyone noticed that McCain, while more energetic and willing to engage with the public than former presidential candidate Fred Thompson, is doing just about the same stuff. Sitting on his behind and addressing voters of no major consequence like the NAACP and La Raza?

Where is the fight?

Like the current Bush Administration, McCain does not seem to be capable of mounting a hard-hitting campaign, relying more on “nuanced” appearances and his “same old” spin doctors.

Why doesn’t McCain call Obama out on racial issues and demonstrate for one and all that Obama is running on – lest we dare to say it – the race ticket?

Why doesn’t McCain question Obama’s inexperience, his lack of a legislative record and his propensity to avoid difficult issues and vote “present” when he was an elected state official? Or, does McCain, like Fred Thompson, believe that by being gentlemanly and holding back until the closing weeks of the election, he can change the minds of those who have been bombarded week-after-week with the pro-Obama campaign message: change is good, we stand for change?

What change?

When is McCain going to simply stand up and say "change, what change?" And point out that Obama looks much like any other self-serving Chicago politician who has conspired with the corrupt, the racists and others in the radical far left to gain a political advantage.

Who is he courting?

With a significant portion of blacks apparently voting for Obama on the basis of race, why would McCain waste his time courting the black vote beyond a few token appearances? Ditto with the Hispanics with the exception of the strong conservative Cuban contingent in Florida who prefer stability to racial divide and chaos.

Why isn’t McCain going after the “softer” democrats who supported Hillary Clinton rather than trying to convince hard core democrats, like the activist Hispanics, that McCain will watch out for their interests.

Ignoring the obvious …

McCain does not need the advice of high-priced advisors who move from political campaign to political campaign. He needs only to read the conservative press to know what subjects overwhelmingly resonate with the American public. 

Say what you will about Pat Buchanan, Dick Morris and Newt Gingrich, they are all flawed people – but they all seem to have an almost impeccable ability to divine the political tea leaves. They know the core issues and the fundamental political battlegrounds that will make a difference. And they are shouting it from the rooftops each day and each night on television, on Internet sites and in their published writings. At little or no cost, their valuable advice is available to those who want to craft a winning platform which will appear to a majority of Americans and not just to the 49-1-50 crowd that keeps swinging back and forth in the polls.

A Hillary-Romney matchup for the presidency?

As with Hillary Clinton, who has not formally announced the termination (only suspension) of her campaign, anything can happen up until the time the last political convention vote is cast for the party’s presidential candidate. Crazy reverends aside, it is possible that something may tip the balance toward Hillary at the last minute. Unlikely, improbable – but still within the realm of possibility.

On the McCain side, if McCain chooses Mitt Romney (whom I endorsed over McCain) as his Vice Presidential running mate and the improbable happens, it is possible that the voting members of the Republican convention could ratify Romney as their presidential candidate and thus shore up a sagging base of conservatives who have very little faith in McCain’s economic and domestic policy. And other than his apparent strength in defending the United States from her enemies, there is little else that is attractive about McCain as, at least from my viewpoint, he appears to be a moderate democrat.

What can YOU do?

No matter what the final matchup, vote your pocketbook. The democrats are out to enlarge the government, raise your taxes, grant amnesty for foreign illegals and are wishy-washy on national defense. Their position on the environment, nuclear energy and energy independence makes them wildly unsuited to lead the nation and/or control Congress.

Rejoice if Romney becomes the nominee or hold your nose and vote McCain if he doesn’t.

Do not vote for any candidate or current politician who is willing to subvert the safety, security, sovereignty and economic strength of the United States or limit an individual's right of self-defense for their personal philosophy, power, prestige or profits.

-- steve

Quote of the Day: “To educate a person in mind and not in morals is to educate a menace to society.”  -- Theodore Roosevelt

A reminder from OneCitizenSpeaking.com: a large improvement can result from a small change…

The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane. -- Marcus Aurelius


“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


Teddy Kennedy: Honored by Mexico

Why wouldn’t Mexico, with their racist immigration policy that outsources their violent gang members, drugs, sick, pregnant, illiterate and poverty-stricken people to the United States, want to honor a man who wanted to participate in a political process that provided Mexico with a large voting bloc able to influence local, state and federal policies in favor of Mexico?

What an honor?

According to CNSNews.com …

“Mexico will soon bestow its highest honor upon liberal Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) for his work in ‘defending the rights of immigrants.’”

“The Mexican government announced last Friday that it intends to present Kennedy with the Order of the Aztec Eagle. Ricardo Alday, a spokesman for the Mexican Embassy in Washington, D.C., told Cybercast News Service that the award, the highest that Mexico gives to foreigners, will be presented ‘at a time that is convenient to the senator.’” 

Legal immigrants and those here with permission have the full force and protection of the United States Government and its Courts to protect them as does every other legal citizen of the United States.

Where is the honor for compromising the safety, security and sovereignty of the United States?

The presentation will laud Kennedy for his work on immigration, and “for (promoting) full political participation and increased access to health and education services for the Mexican-American community."

How many legal United States citizens have been compromised by the hoard of illegal aliens who have decimated our healthcare, educational, retirement, judicial, social and cultural infrastructure? How much can the legal citizens of the United States afford to pay to support illegal aliens who, in spite of protests to the contrary, cost the system $22,000 above and beyond any contributions they may make to our economy?

Saint, Sell-out or SOB?

“Hector M. Flores, immediate past national president of LULAC, the League of United Latin American Citizens, told Cybercast News Service that Kennedy – indeed, the entire Kennedy family – deserves the honor, if not ‘canonization.’ ‘I think it is long in coming,’ Flores said. ‘I think if there’s been, not just one individual, but a part of a family that has always gone out of their way to make sure that the downtrodden, the powerless, the defenseless are defended, it’s been Ted Kennedy and the Kennedy family.’”

“’In our mindset as Mexican Americans and Latinos, they are pretty high – next to sainthood – as far as we’re concerned, at least in many segments of our community,’ Flores said. ‘They just about walk on water. Not to sound trivial, but this is kind of like being on the way to canonization for the great work he’s done over many, many years, not only for Latinos, but for people in general in our country,’ he added.”

“Flores said Kennedy is especially deserving of honor for the work he has done in the last two years on immigration reform. ‘“He is a foremost adversary for those who would not want to pay attention to the downtrodden in our country,’ Flores said.”

Whose country is Flores referring to: Mexico?

We can see Kennedy is a sell-out --- there is no doubt that Kennedy supports the immediate path to citizenship to insure that illegal aliens achieve the same social benefits that Americans now receive, including access to our retirement system which would provide an even greater cash flow to Mexico as Mexican citizens returned to their native state with their pockets full of American cash.  With no provisions controlling anchor babies or requiring Mexican citizens to renounce their citizenship and loyalty to Mexico, Kennedy is complicit in compromising our sovereignty – all for his far left liberal democrat dreams of an Hispanic voting bloc which will keep the democrats in power forever.

And as for the sainthood and being an SOB, perhaps we should see how Mary Jo Kopechne feels about his latest accolade for compromising America and assisting in the conversion of its cities into third-world slums.

Not everybody is comfortable …

“But Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies, told Cybercast News Service that he is ‘just not comfortable” with Kennedy receiving the prize.”

“’In principle, getting an award from a foreign government isn’t necessarily a problem,’ Krikorian said. ‘For instance, last year Mexico gave this award to Bill Gates because of his philanthropic work in Mexico – donating computers and helping to eliminate disease, that kind of stuff.’”

“’This award went to an American government official for “helping implement policies that the Mexican government wants implemented,’ Krikorian said.”

“Ira Mehlman, spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform, said he is not as upset with Mexico awarding the prize as with Kennedy accepting it. ‘The question is whether Senator Kennedy has been looking out for the interests of American citizens,’ Mehlman told 'Cybercast News Service. ‘From our point of view, the answer is no, not very well. He seems to forget that these policies are there, first and foremost, to protect U.S. citizens.’”

“In 2005 and again last year, Kennedy co-sponsored, along with Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), an immigration bill that would have provided for guest worker visas, and allowed undocumented aliens to stay in the United States, if they paid a $1,500 fine.”

“’It was a bill that would have guaranteed benefits for people who broke the law, both illegal aliens and their direct employers’” Mehlman said. ‘The American people were kind of an afterthought.’”

What can YOU do?

In my opinion, Teddy Kennedy is one of the worst members of a somewhat notorious family which has, since its founding, used public service to protect and expand their own fortunes. It was Kennedy’s corrupt father that recognized that the way to protect one’s ill-gotten fortune and to expand the family enterprise was to become a political power. A plan that was faithfully executed.  Even with wealth, privilege and personal foibles, John and Bobby Kennedy did much for America. As for Teddy, history will judge for itself what his true contribution may be. So, if something happens to Kennedy, do not become overly sentimental and support a “Teddy Kennedy Memorial Amnesty Bill” which would further decimate the sovereignty and economy of the United States.

Recognize the dangers of comprehensive immigration reform that does not deal our borders, does not reverse the law on anchor babies, allows foreign citizens to retain their citizenship and loyalty to foreign sovereign states and provides a blank checkbook for those nations who want to export their illiterate, unskilled and poor to the United States and who reap a financial windfall as these newly-minted immigrants send money back to their native countries.

Feel free to label me as you will … but nothing will change the fact that uncontrolled illegal immigration in fast ruining America.

Do not vote for any candidate or current politician who is willing to subvert the safety, security, sovereignty and economic strength of the United States or limit an individual's right of self-defense for their personal philosophy, power, prestige or profits.

-- steve

A reminder from OneCitizenSpeaking.com: a large improvement can result from a small change…

The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane. -- Marcus Aurelius

Reference Links:

CNSNews.com - Mexico Honors Kennedy for Defending Immigrants


“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


LAPD CHIEF BRATTON: BUILDING A "SENSITIVE" POLICE FORCE OR AVOIDING EMBARRASSING PRESS?

Political animal …

There is no doubt in many people’s mind that Los Angeles Police Chief is a political animal with aspirations for higher office. Some rumors have him pitching his candidacy for the all-powerful chief of the United States Department of Homeland Defense under an Obama Administration.

Therefore, it is highly believable that the Chief will do or say anything to generate a positive public reception and good media coverage.

Special Order 40 …

Which might be the reason that the Chief continues to defend the odious Special Order 40 which serves to protect violent illegal alien gang members to court the Hispanic vote rather than protecting the general public. It could also be the reason that Chief Bratton was so eager to link hands with Hispanic Activist and Los Angeles Mayor Tony Villar (His real name is not Villaraigosa) in immediately condemning the Los Angeles Police Department in what has been called the “May Day Melee.” Which saw the LAPD actively soliciting the testimony of illegal aliens against police officers, but also opened up the city to millions of dollars worth of lawsuits.

Curtailing negative publicity?

According to the Los Angeles Times …

“Los Angeles Police Chief William J. Bratton is seeking permission to make the department's review of officer-involved shootings and other use-of-force incidents less punitive for some officers who violate department rules.”

“The Los Angeles Police Commission, which oversees the Police Department, is poised to vote today on whether to approve Bratton's proposed changes to how he and his command staff deal with officers who use serious force during altercations.”

“The move would alter a review system used by the department for more than 25 years. And it comes as part of a recent, ongoing shift within the LAPD away from hard-nosed discipline toward a more nuanced approach of ‘strategy before penalty.’”

When people start waffling about “nuanced approaches,” one must consider that their is something or someone behind the scenes seeking something.

"I imagine a department full of thoughtful, creative police officers who aren't confused about doing the right thing because they understand the principles behind what is expected of them," Deputy Chief Mark Perez, head of the department's Professional Standards Bureau, said about the department's new approach to discipline.

Is this another play to the Hispanic community and a signal of a “kinder, gentler” LAPD? Or is this more of Bratton’s “social engineering” of the type that almost demands that a female officer be placed on the LAPD’s SWAT team – even though the LAPD has allegedly relaxed the physical requirements for team membership and which may put other team members at risk if the newest female recruit cannot drag a 200+ team member with over 50-pounds of gear to safety?

Use of force should involve a “bright line” procedure, visible to all and require  a management review…

“Currently, an officer who is found to have violated department policies regarding a "categorical use of force" -- incidents such as when an officer fires a weapon, strikes someone in the head or causes someone to be hospitalized -- is automatically subjected to a formal review to determine what, if any, discipline should be imposed. Under the proposed changes, the chief would be allowed to sidestep that review and, instead, order the officer to receive training or some other less punitive result.”

More information is required, not less …

It remains unclear how much, if any, of the department's findings in such incidents would be made public by the department or the commission. Since 2006, following a state Supreme Court decision, the LAPD has sharply curtailed what information it releases on use-of-force incidents and disciplinary matters.

While we should wait until the policy is approved by the Los Angeles Police Commission and implemented by Chief Bratton, I remain leery of any actions initiated by the Chief until he rescinds Special Order 40.

There is no doubt that we need a strong police department to deal with the issues of rising crime perpetrated by illegal aliens in Los Angeles. And a strong police chief who will defend those under his command from the vagaries of the politicians. What we do not need is a socialite police chief that covers up issues or manages the news for his own future political aspirations.

What can YOU do?

Keep a steely eye on Chief Bratton and his political aspirations.

Demand that Los Angeles and the LAPD rescind Special Order 40 and turn over all illegal aliens to ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement).

Demand that Chief Bratton honestly and openly deal with the ongoing war between Hispanic gangs and legal black citizens such as the circumstances surrounding the Jamiel Shaw murder.

Restructure the far-left nature of the Los Angeles Police Commission to become less of a political power play and more of a part of the illegal alien crime fighting solution.

-- steve

Quote of the day: “Crime does not pay ... as well as politics.” -- Alfred E. Newman

A reminder from OneCitizenSpeaking.com: a large improvement can result from a small change…

The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane. -- Marcus Aurelius

Reference Links:

Los Angeles police chief seeks to forgo reviews in some use-of-force cases - Los Angeles Times


“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


T. BOONE PICKENS: MAKEOVER OF A ROBBER BARON?

UPDATE: (11-13-08) PICKENS MAY SCALE BACK PROJECT...

"The capital markets are problematic for everyone, and we are keeping an eye on them. We are committed to wind development projects and believe it’s a viable business for us. The capital markets may lead us to scale back a bit but we are still going forward with our wind business."

If nothing else, T. Boone Pickens is a financial man -- his Mesa Petroleum is said to have been built more on financial engineering than oil exploration and processing. Now that oil prices are falling and the ability to sell bonds -- even with government guarantees -- is somewhat dodgy, Pickens needs to either postpone or scale back his project.

But, according to the Wall Street Journal, Pickens may have bigger problems...

"About half of the investors in T. Boone Pickens's energy-oriented equity hedge fund have asked to withdraw their money on the heels of losses of about 60% this year, according to people close to the matter. Mr. Pickens and his investment firm have lost $2 billion since peaking in late June, Mr. Pickens said Sunday on the CBS program '60 Minutes.'"

"His fund, BP Capital, will have about between $400 million and $500 million after expected withdrawals. It started the year with about $2 billion. A few weeks ago, Mr. Pickens moved the fund almost entirely into cash to help ride out the volatility in the energy patch, according to people close to the matter."

"Mr. Pickens is expected to personally hold about 20% of the fund after the withdrawals, or about $100 million, after he does some selling along with his investors. He has lost an estimated $400 million or so in his funds this year."

UPDATE: (07-22-08) PICKENS PUBLICITY/PROMOTION TOUR ...

During a Senate Hearing, T. Boone Pickens continued his promotion of his project by continuing to generate media attention with headline grabbing assertions.

According to Reuters ...

"Oil prices will hit $300 a barrel in 10 years if the United States fails to reduce its dependence on foreign imports, billionaire oil investor T. Boone Pickens said on Tuesday."

"Pickens who heads the hedge fund BP Capital, is building a 4,000 megawatt, $10 billion wind farm in Northern Texas that should start generating power in 2011."

"He has been touring the country with a plan to cut oil imports by switching the use of domestic natural gas from firing power plants to powering cars. He hopes the federal government and private investors will build a massive wind farm system in the middle of the country from Mexico to Canada to replace the natural gas that would be used for transport."

Original Blog Entry:

Like all Texas billionaires who have built their fortune by sharp dealing in financial markets, we need to take a much closer look at their proposals before lionizing them or their projects -- just because they mirror the prevailing political opinions on climate, energy and the economy.

Corporate raider and greenmailer or shareholder activist?

T. Boone Pickens was widely known as a takeover operator in the 1980s when he was regarded as a “greenmailer” and worse since many of his takeover efforts failed. However, many failures provided significant financial returns for Pickens and his investment group as he was paid a premium over the actual share price in order to secure a halt to his activities. In essence being paid a premium to “go away” so that management could continue to run the company. It should be noted that these premiums were usually not available to the ordinary shareholder and that stock prices usually tumbled as the price pressure of continual buying eased.

Real deal oilman and energy expert …

There is no doubt in my mind that Pickens is a true oilman and energy expert. Although many of his successes come more from acquisitions and financial manipulations than oil exploration. His philanthropic and political activities on behalf of the Republican party are well known.

He currently heads a relatively unregulated hedge fund, BP Capital Management, which can move substantial amounts of capital in and out of positions with great rapidity.

Milking the political snake …

As with all billionaires who wield enormous corporate power and can direct campaign contributions to politicians, Picken’s ability to milk the political snake is legendary. As he moves into wind-powered energy projects, I would expect that he will also be seeking government grants, subsidies and tax breaks to improve his return on an investment which is normally an uneconomical method to generate power when compared to other generation methods. In addition, I would also expect his operations to generate a significant amount of emissions credits for use as playing chips to sweeten his yields. Thus making him a natural self-interested proponent in monetizing the global weather change phenomenon.

While Pickens is known to be an increasing proponent of natural gas as a replacement for oil energy, I believe he is most excited by his belief that water is the new oil. To this end, Pickens has allegedly purchased the rights to more underground natural water than any other individual in the nation.

While Pickens is the ultimate horse trader, willing to deal in anything that can be traded or arbitraged for a significant profit, and a shining example of American Capitalism, I am somewhat worried about one particular phase of his water acquisition plan.

Why we need to watch Pickens carefully …

In a number of previous blog entries, I have indicated my opinion that the Supreme Court made a grievous error when it put forth the “Kelo” decision which has great impact on the subject of eminent domain. Basically, the Kelo decision allowed municipalities as well as other political entities such as redevelopment agencies and water districts to condemn the land of a private individual and to convey that land to another private individual for profit-making activities so long as the transaction served a “public purpose” which can be substantially different from the old standard of “public use.”   

Pickens’ water play …

According to published reports, Pickens has turned only eight acres of what has been described as “Texas Scrub Land” into his own water agency with the power to condemn other people’s property using the agency’s power of Kelo-inspired eminent domain. According to Texas State law, only those people who live on the eight acres will be allowed to vote for the approval of the water district.

According to an article in the Austin American-Statesman …

“By law, only the two people who actually live on the eight acres will be allowed to vote: the manager of Pickens' nearby Mesa Vista ranch and his wife. The other three owners, who will sit on the district's board, all work for Pickens.”

“Pickens ‘has pulled a shenanigan,’ said Phillip Smith, a rancher who serves on a local water-conservation board. ‘He's obtained the right of eminent domain like he was a big city. It's supposed to be for the public good, not a private company.’"

“Pickens and his allies say no shenanigans are involved. Once the district is created, the board will be able to issue tax-exempt bonds to finance construction of Pickens' planned 328-mile, $2.2 billion pipeline to transport water from the Panhandle across the prairie to the suburbs of Dallas and San Antonio.”

Two Texas Senators weigh-in …

“[Senators] Duncan and Seliger: Don't cut off the lifeblood of West Texas”

“Many angry landowners have contacted us about a plan that, contrary to good public policy, will affect property rights of rural Texans. The new Roberts County Fresh Water Supply District No. 1, acting as an alter ego of businessman T. Boone Pickens and Mesa Power Pampa LLC, has launched a private venture that may force landowners across 11 counties to submit to the power of eminent domain so that district can pump water from the shrinking Ogallala Aquifer and sell wind-generated electricity.

“This new governmental entity is composed of only five people, all employees or associates of Pickens. Mesa is Pickens' private company; he controls the various corporate shells identified with this project in filings with the Public Utility Commission.”

“Pickens' plan is to sell 200,000 acre-feet of Ogallala water each year to the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, even though the plan has not been embraced by water policy planners as an economically viable solution. Such an extensive extraction of water from the Ogallala Aquifer will affect natural spring flows and on the Panhandle and West Texas communities that depend on that water.”

The “why” behind T. Boone Pickens’ wind project …

Enabling the wind part of the project stems from a last-minute House amendment last year that allows a fresh water supply district to host transmission lines from wind energy projects on its rights-of-way or easements. The amendment lets Pickens' personal fresh water supply district develop right-of-way to build the transmission lines for wind-generated energy he intends to sell. This part of the plan also taps the emotions of those who support development of wind energy resources in the Panhandle (as we do).

“Many believe that if they oppose Pickens' supply district's Ogallala-to-Metroplex water project, they will miss out on wind energy opportunities. That is not true.”

“Pickens isn't the only one seeking to develop wind energy. He's just the only one who personally owns a governmental entity to obtain the right-of-way for him.”

Duncan, R-Lubbock, represents 46 Panhandle and West Texas counties. Seliger, R-Amarillo, represents 26 counties from the Panhandle to the Permian Basin.

It appears that the old saying “appearances can be deceiving” has never been truer. What is being passed along to the citizens of the United States as the “Pickens Plan” for wind energy generation may be, in reality, a water-grabbing scheme to make more money for T. Boone who seems to be going “whole hog” to feed at the public trough.

On the surface, the creation of this special water district, controlled by a single individual,  in order to grab water rights, land, the right-of-way for power lines and issue his own controlled securities, STINKS!

What can YOU do?

Before you endorse any energy or water policies based on the global climatology scam, decide for yourself which of the special interests will benefit from the government’s actions.

Pray that a test case involving Kelo-style eminent domain will, once again, grace the courtroom of the Supreme Court and this time the Justices will repeal the current test of eminent domain “public purpose” and reinstate the “public use” requirement. In my opinion, it is wrong for any government agency to take private property from a private individual and give it to another private individual for the purposes of making a profit for that private individual. To my way of thinking, it is immaterial if the process results in a “public purpose,” it needs to result in a “public use.”

For those in Texas, watch your back. Pickens is a sharp operator and can afford the very best lawyers, lobbyists and legislators to press his advantage. Visit Pickens' site at www.pickensplan.com to see how he is selling his project to the public.

Do not vote for any politician who supports Kelo-style eminent domain.

-- steve

Quote of the day: “My definition of an expert in any field is a person who knows enough about what's really going on to be scared.” -- P. J. Plauger

A reminder from OneCitizenSpeaking.com: a large improvement can result from a small change…

The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane. -- Marcus Aurelius

Reference Links:

Duncan and Seliger: Don't cut off the lifeblood of West Texas

Kelo decision|Wikipedia

T.Boone Pickens|Wikipedia


“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


Are unions pushing us over the tipping point?

Increasing costs, decreasing productivity and employee satisfaction …

When faced with fixed costs such as the payroll, an employer is inclined to demand more of the employee. Especially, if the employer must reduce staff in order to meet a burgeoning payroll. Therefore, with union-mandated work rules and increasing costs, it is entirely probable that the remaining employees must work harder to allow the company to stay in the same competitive posture. Thus true productivity decreases and employee satisfaction suffers greatly.

Buying political favor resulting in a massive rise in the cost of bureaucracy…

There is no doubt that politicians pander to the union, both for their votes and their considerable campaign funds. While nobody consults each and every member to develop a consensus opinion, the union expends massive amounts of money to benefit the union and its leadership; which hopefully will trickle down to benefit its hard working members.

Living the good life …

Many people forget that running a union is similar to running a corporation without,  of course, having to continually produce results. Most of the union’s effort goes into recruiting additional members to keep the union flush with operational cash and beau coup investable funds. Although they earn smaller salaries and have no recourse to stock options, many union officials live exactly the same lifestyle as major corporate executives who must produce rising profits to satisfy investors. I found it quite startling to find an unmarked executive jet parked at an airport that was plainly visible from the runway-side hotel I was staying at. Considering that I was less than 5-hours away from the union’s headquarters, it seemed strange that they would spend the time and money to let two executives travel in style rather than use commercial transportation. All I conclude is that it is extremely to be the king.

Merit? What is merit?

But my worst complaint about unions is that it reduces most employee compensation to a formulaic approach which rewards seniority over actual merit. In one case, the union is demanding that a person who is making $12.75 /hour for a relatively unskilled food-service position should be bumped to $15.00/hour with corresponding hikes in the employer’s contribution to retirement pension, health and welfare costs. Unfortunately, this organization as skilled technical assistants who are now earning $15.00/hour and must, to preserve the parity between tasks, be bumped to at least $17.00/hour. Thus the raise percolates upward without any corresponding increase in productivity or any observable benefit for the organization.

The myth of the happy employee …

For those who union-supporters and others who claim that the raise will produce a happier employee, the claim is relatively bogus. Unless the person is doing something that they thoroughly enjoy, most employees tend to become increasingly dissatisfied with both their jobs and compensation as time progresses.  Especially after the additional funds are incorporated into the rising costs of daily living in these financially troubled times or absorbed into an enhanced lifestyle.

The democrats and their union supporters are backing illegal alien immigration …

Not only for the purposes of enhancing a democrat voting block in the future, but also to counter the declining union membership and funds as more and more jobs are outsourced to overseas companies.

Often the union’s mantra is that illegal aliens are doing the work that “Americans” cannot or will not perform. Which may be true enough, but one must ask themselves what are the wages and benefits being offered.

It is a well-known fact that automation in the agricultural industry has always been impeded by the relatively cheap cost of labor. Something both the unions and the corporate owners of agribusiness want to see continue. The employers to obtain cheap and compliant labor and the unions to build a bigger power base of dues paying workers. I live close enough to a major rural agricultural area to see how agricultural workers are treated and it is not pretty. They are essentially told “take it or leave it” when it comes to jobs. Especially since there will be another illegal alien to take their position in a heartbeat. Both the employer and the unions treat these poor people like crap.

A solution to the illegal alien problem …

Yes, my position is that I greatly resent and deplore the mass of illegal aliens that are destroying California’s healthcare, educational, judicial, financial, social and cultural infrastructure. But on a person-to-person basis, I have nothing but sympathy for those who are being unfairly exploited.

Therefore, my idea of comprehensive immigration reform is relative simple:

Seal the borders against the increasing tide of illegal aliens and those who are bringing disease, drugs, poverty, illiteracy and other social ills into our country.

Modify the existing law to make a newborn’s citizenship that of its parents. No more anchor babies as an inducement to enter this country illegally.

Control the workplace and have workers sponsored by specific employers using a temporary work visa that is controlled by a computerized tracking system and which uses tamper-proof identification methods.

Do not give any current illegal alien a path to citizenship, but provide an open-ended visa to allow their stay in this country as long as they are not convicted on a felony or a series of misdemeanors. Illegal aliens would be given 60-90 days to register with no grace period and very few exceptions. Anyone found in this country after this period would be deported with their family back to their native land.

Any illegal alien caught voting in an election is subject to immediate deportation. Require voter identification before casting a ballot. Take even stricter precautions with absentee ballots.

Penalize and fine any employer, union or other organization that aids and abets the importation of illegal aliens or offers them sanctuary without being registered as illegal aliens. Remove the tax exemption from church properties that are used to harbor illegal aliens. Decertify any union at the place of employment if illegal aliens are found to be working with the union’s permission.

When does it end?

There used to be a time when a union’s work and safety rules were necessary to save lives. When the union was the only thing that kept employees from being routinely abused. However, considering all of the local, state and federal protective laws on the books and with an employee’s access to any number of legal resources, the need for this type of collective protection has greatly declined.

As with most other places in the world, unions are the bastion of far-left radicals that want to effect political change through making use of a nation’s laws against itself to push their social and political agendas.

Perhaps it is time to take a closer look at the impact the unions are having on our nation and insuring that they are not being co-opted by those who harbor hostile or anti-American sentiment.

What can YOU do?

If you are a union member, watch what your leadership is doing in your name. Get involved. Even though it may be difficult, make your position known. If you are being threatened or coerced into taking actions with which you disagree, file an anonymous report with the National Labor Relations Board or send a tip to the media.

If you are not a union member, consider carefully the benefits and detriments of union membership before becoming involved with a union.

And for everybody, watch which issues unions support and which candidates receive their campaign funds. Look for positions with which you disagree and then vote against the candidate or the position.

Vote – make your voice heard.

While there are any number of decent, law-abiding and hard-working union members, the same cannot often be said for its senior leadership. Deny them the path to power when you vote for local and national officers.

This is your America and it is rapidly becoming something no one wants: a third world nation controlled by political elites and their special interest friends. It is this massive conflict of interest that is rapidly destroying our homeland. Be vigilant and vote.

Do not vote for any candidate or current politician who is willing to subvert the safety, security, sovereignty and economic strength of the United States or limit an individual's right of self-defense for their personal philosophy, power, prestige or profits.

-- steve

Quote of the day: “Ninety-eight percent of the adults in this country are decent, hard-working, honest Americans. It's the other lousy two percent that get all the publicity. But then--we elected them.” -- Lily Tomlin

A reminder from OneCitizenSpeaking.com: a large improvement can result from a small change…

The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane. -- Marcus Aurelius


“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


Gore positions himself as a "Power Broker"

Like most messianic leaders of a movement, I have always wondered if Al Gore was “certifiable” …

What happens to a man who has been groomed his entire life to assume the Presidency of the United States and loses the prize by the narrowest of margins due to a confluence of events beyond his immediate control? Can a man who has scaled the pinnacle of presidential politics simply retire or retreat into the background while life moves on?

In Gore’s case, it seems that he was privileged to be at the right point in time and space to capitalize on the “climate” issue. An issue which provides him with continuing ego-stroking accolades and the power and money to be the acknowledged leader of a worldwide movement. Free of the political constraints of having to respond to his critics or account for his funds, it seems Al Gore has done well for himself by finding his own personal nirvana.

Generating a different kind of power …

In a sense, Al Gore is his own self-interest. Free of the constraints which require the disclosure of his business dealings, especially those which are constituted as offshore entities. Al Gore can profit from his pronouncements and earn money from his speeches, writings and by hooking into the hedge fund capital scene to raise money for investments in things that he promotes. Not that there is anything wrong with this other than the possibility that it is based on “junk science” or that government subsidies for certain investments may not be forthcoming in the future.

From Wikipedia

Gore is currently the cofounder and chairman of Generation Investment Management, cofounder and chairman of the Emmy Award - winning American television channel Current TV … He is also a partner in the venture capital firm, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, heading that firm's climate change solutions group.”

“Generation Investment Management LLP is a London-based investment management firm with an investment style that blends traditional equity research with a focus on sustainability factors, including social and environmental responsibility and corporate governance.”

“Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore is chairman of Generation, and David Blood — previously chief executive of Goldman Sachs Asset Management — is CEO. The pair has given the company its nickname, ‘Blood and Gore.’”

“In November 2007, Generation and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers announced a global collaboration to "find, fund and accelerate green business, technology and policy solutions with the greatest potential to help solve the current climate crisis." As part of the collaboration, prominent KPCB Partner John Doerr joined Generation's Advisory Board.”

“Generation Investment Management LLP is authorized and regulated by the Financial Services Authority in the UK.”

You would think that any organization headed by an American and run by Americans would be headquartered in the United States and subject to control by the Securities Exchange Commission, the Federal Trade Commission and other such consumer protection agencies?

The “rain making” publicity machine …

Gore’s primary task is to keep the climate story on the front page and opening the door to new business contacts for his partners to exploit. So we often see outrageous headlines that are crafted more for their ability to attract media attention than the truth they assert.

From Politico.com … 

Gore compares offshore drilling to invasion of Iraq

“In a surprise appearance at Netroots Nation — which apparently was the worst-kept secret in Austin, Texas — former Vice President Al Gore followed up a speech by Nancy Pelosi by laying out a narrative on climate change and the energy crisis that seems ready-made for the Obama campaign to download.”

“If you look at the seriousness of the climate crisis, you see how it ties to the economic crisis and the national security threat that we face,” he said. “200 billion dollars are being sent overseas just from oil.”

It is amazing that the far-left ties a phony climate crisis where time frames are measured in hundreds and thousands of years to present day military and economic threat issues. Especially since this far-left crowd is historically about weakening the United States militarily and economically.

“’The idea that we can drill our way out of this is just so absurd,’ he said, comparing the push for offshore oil drilling — which has gained popularity and put environmentalists on the defense — to dealing with a hangover by having another drink.”

A cute word-picture which is entirely inaccurate. Perhaps a more accurate picture would be dealing with the thirst of a nation by further closing the water tap and charging more for the drink. And, of course, all the while demanding that people drink costly “alternative” water bottled at a huge profit by the legislator’s friends.

“The defenders of the status quo are the ones who have dug us into this hole,” he said, commenting that Americans have been “so often fooled into finding a remedy for a problem" that has nothing to do with the problem at hand — pointing to the invasion of Iraq when America was attacked by terrorists in Afghanistan as an example.

Notice the subtle switch of subject: from environmental concerns to military commentary.

Does Gore really believe that the American people are so stupid as not to realize that it was his democrat party, himself included, that have been the traditional the defenders of the status quo? 

That the democrat who supported NIMBY (Not In My Back Yard) and BANANA (Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Nor Anytime) policies that created this crisis are are uniquely complicit in today’s war on terror?

Democrats who refused to expand the exploitation of our own energy reserves and which pushed us into supporting Saudi Arabia and other Middle Eastern countries on their terms. Enriching them with our money so they could support IslamoFascism.  Making it virtually impossible to attack the real source of terror in the Middle East: Saudi Arabia, Iran and Syria?

Does Gore believe that, given the benefit of 20-20 hindsight, the anti-nuclear stance of the democrats which precluded the use of relatively clean and economically viable energy generation in favor of heavily subsidized unreliable energy sources, was in the best interests of America?

On this subject, Gore is like most politicians: full of crap and in full denial of historical records.

“’The engines of distraction and the great concentrated power of communication that you’ve seen turned on this issue or that issue is already hard at work,’ he says. "’They will say we can’t switch away from oil.’"

Again, with the misdirection. Most of today’s media is biased towards the liberal left and spends much of its time bashing the Bush Administration and ignoring any good news that would enlighten and embolden ordinary American citizens. And if they say anything about energy,  it is mostly about the perils of drilling and pumping oil and the problem with nuclear waste. And anything else that would keep American from becoming energy independent.

“’We have to switch our electricity generation system,” he says, noting that changing transportation fuels will take longer, before reiterating his plan to ensure that “100 percent of our electricity [comes] from renewable sources and carbon-constrained fuels over the next 10 years.”

We need to build a better fault-tolerant electrical grid. We need to reduce pollution. We need to develop a scientific basis linking carbon dioxide to anything before we simply decide to chuck carbon-source energy in the dustbin and confer a great advantage on our enemies who are less suicidal than the democrats.

"It is not partisan, it is focused on this single objective," he says. "we are trying to mobilize ten million grassroots activists.”

With Gore, it is about being post-partisan and attracting the largest possible audience for his ideas. But has anybody noticed that the “Netroots Nation” is simply the new name of the annual YearlyKos convention. A rabid far-left political blogging organization which often spews hate and filth at those who disagree with its far-left anti-America agenda?

In response to a question about whether he'd join an Obama administration as climate czar, he says he'd rather "focus on trying to enlarge the political space in which political officials address this climate crisis ... I have seen how important it is to develop a base of support.

One of my greatest criticisms of Al Gore is that he is continually playing in the political space rather than putting together conferences of scientists who will hash out what we know, what we don’t know and what we need to do in order to continue to discover the truth about global climate change.

People for a perfect planet: a new secular religion?

The sad truth regarding Al Gore’s accomplishments is that they will be forever tainted with their association of the far-left of the political spectrum. Those who have co-opted the environmental movement in order to secure their political agenda. Some of which believe man is an unrepentant, filthy stain on the planet’s ecosystem and that his effects should be minimized at all costs. Many of these people belong to splinter sects which believe that animals have legal and civil rights and that we need to reverse the tide of civilization in order to live closer to the land.

A great cover for those who want to do physical harm to America by curtailing its ability to defend itself militarily and support itself economically. Scratch many ecologists and you will find some of the older “peace at any price” and “no nukes” crowd who objected to the rise of nuclear energy, not because it may have been ecologically unfriendly in the old days, but because it put their worshiped Soviet Union at a great military disadvantage.

This has morphed into a new secular religion which requires faith to believe all of its teachings. And, like most religions, fosters a sense of community in the social sense. Where people of like mind can meet and congratulate themselves on doing good works on behalf of the planet. Somewhat like cynical apolitical guys joining the Young Democrats, Young Republicans and various protest groups to get at the hot babes that frequented such events.

This new religion seems like an amazing parallel to the Church of Scientology that was founded by the science fiction writer L.Ron Hubbard. Both profess to want to help mankind overcome its burden. With Scientology, an internal burden and with Gore, the external burden on the planet. Both purport to make the world a better place. Both have an extremely high buy-in – in terms of commitment and cost. Both have shadowy leadership which minimizes media confrontation. Both use celebrities to attract additional supporters. Both have  a following of vocal skeptics. And both feature end-results which are somewhat unbelievable to the person not a member of the religion.

While it seemed important at the time, history may evaluate both Gore’s Noble Peace Prize ,which is a non-scientific political accolade, and his Oscar for a deeply-flawed and misleading “documentary” film to be little more than a timely anti-Bush Administration “poke-in-the-eye" Granted for the purposes of pursuing a political agenda rather than for any solid accomplishment by an individual.

A warning beacon for the planet or simply a political shill for special interests?

While the science is still out on the subject of anthropogenic climate change, there is the possibility that the science will not support Gore’s assertions and that his efforts were simply as a shill for those who wanted to enlarge their bureaucratic constituencies, assume greater political power,  raise taxes, engage in further social engineering which curtails personal liberty and freedom as well as making large amounts of money for themselves and their special interest supporters. What better way to plunder the public treasury with little or no threat of an uprising of those who are being forced to pay the price of making the rich much, much richer and the moving the powerful beyond the bounds of reproach.

Most disturbing …

The most disturbing facet of Al Gore’s work is that he tightly controls media access to his high-cost, well-attended events and refuses to engage in a debate about his work or his conclusions.

What can YOU do?

Demand that there be some rationality in our plan to achieve energy independence – which is at the root of most of our economic and statecraft problems.

Do not vote for those who have been traditional obstructions or who have corrupted the system beyond all recognition. By which I mean the democrats who have placed us in this pickle.

Recognize that the sometimes inept and uncommunicative Bush Administration has performed better than the democrats; regardless of what the left-leaning media may proclaim.

Vote your pocketbook. Do you want to pay more taxes, travel less, give up air travel altogether. Are you about economic growth or economic sacrifice?

Vote the bastards on both sides of the aisle out of office. And that includes local and state elected officials who tend to think of themselves as our new royalty and able to loot the public purse at will.

Be true to yourself, your family and friends. A political party is not a sports team where strategy can be hotly discussed, but the resulting score is not open to interpretation and is instantaneously available to all citizens regardless of their position or belief.

Do not vote for any candidate or current politician who is willing to subvert the safety, security, sovereignty and economic strength of the United States or limit an individual's right of self-defense for their personal philosophy, power, prestige or profits.

-- steve

Quote of the day:  “Everything is vague to a degree you do not realize till you have tried to make it precise.” -- Bertrand Russell

A reminder from OneCitizenSpeaking.com: a large improvement can result from a small change…

The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane. -- Marcus Aurelius

Reference Links:

Ben Smith's Blog: Gore compares offshore drilling to invasion of Iraq - Politico.com


“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


McCain: Does technological literacy matter?

A false premise and unwarranted ridicule …

Implicit in the story about John McCain’s technology illiteracy is a false premise: that those who do not use modern technological miracles cannot possibly understand the world, govern successfully or who are somewhat impaired in some undefined way.

This is sheer lunacy, perpetrated by a candidate that stands for nothing but change. Change which is never defined or linked to goals, but change nevertheless.

Unwarranted ridicule …

To poke fun at someone who does not seem to use the Internet is to be woefully ignorant of the facts.

One, place John McCain in any modern aircraft and he can instantly read all of the instrumentation and know what it all means. Barack Obama would probably look at the instrumentation as a hopeless jumble of dials, gauges and switches and then waffle on about his favorite subject: himself as the master of change.

Two, the Internet is merely another means by which you may take in information and communicate with others. Not only is a great deal of the Internet filled with false and misleading information, much of the content is not worth the time spent browsing various sites. It is somewhat like being dropped into a multi-million book library and walking the aisles looking at various offerings. Amusing for a while and then extremely tedious as time goes on.

Three, the Internet is another diversion from the urgent problems of today much in the same way television and music radio are temporary diversions from your daily routine or serve only as a backdrop to other activities.

And four, the Internet is not critical to receiving the news nor is e-mail critical to communicating with someone about important issues. McCain has assistants to filter his news and to distill what he sees in order to preserve the time necessary to take action. Unlike Obama who waffles on and on about change without ever having put forth a substantial piece of legislation or producing anything of substance, McCain has enacted significant legislation and demonstrated a bipartisan approach to governing. Obama has done neither – but I am pleased to note that he can browse the web and use e-mail.

Bottom line: one does not have to use e-mail to communicate or visit web sites to be fully informed. The idea that one must be able to operate advanced devices to govern is patently ridiculous. 

So articles like this one that appeared in London’s Daily Telegraph does more to define those who write the stories than those whom they condemn as being technologically illiterate.

“John McCain 'technology illiterate' doesn't email or use Internet”

“Senator John McCain, the Republican presidential candidate, has admitted that he never uses email and that his staff has to show him websites because he is only just ‘learning to get online myself’".

The real issue the Obama camp wants to highlight  is age …

“Mr McCain, who turns 72 this year, would be the oldest president ever to be first elected to the White House.”

“In facing Barack Obama, an opponent who is 25 years his junior and has made powerful use of the Internet in his campaign, he is battling against claims he is stuck in the past.”

On the subject of age …

In many cases, age translates to experience and knowledge; the wisdom that comes from having a broad perspective of history.

And there is the very large matter of human nature, which remains almost constant in its wants, needs, actions and behaviors.

One hardly needs a computer and access to the Internet or e-mail to govern any more than one needs to know how to set the times on a video recorder. These are technological skills that may be nice to have, but are totally unnecessary to either govern or deal with human nature.

And, in McCain’s case, age may preclude a second term which would allow both parties to readjust their attitudes and present candidates more suitable to the needs of America. A second chance for America to get it right.

The attack …

“The former US Navy pilot, who spent more than five years as a prisoner of war after his jet was shot down over Vietnam, did himself no favors when asked by ‘The New York Times’ which websites he looks at.”

"’Brooke and Mark show me Drudge, obviously, everybody watches, for better or for worse, Drudge,’ he said, referring to his aides Brooke Buchanan and Mark Salter, who direct him to the Drudge Report website.”

You can just imagine the scorn of the reporter and his disdain for the technologically illiterate…

“When asked if he went online himself, the Arizona senator responded: "They go on for me. I am learning to get online myself, and I will have that down fairly soon, getting on myself.”

"I don't expect to be a great communicator, I don't expect to set up my own blog, but I am becoming computer literate to the point where I can get the information that I need - including going to my daughter's blog first, before anything else."

“After Mr McCain conceded that he did not use a BlackBerry or email, Mr Salter butted in to say: ‘He uses a BlackBerry, just ours.’ Mr McCain said: "I use the Blackberry, but I don't e-mail, I've never felt the particular need to e-mail.

"I read e-mails all the time, but the communications that I have with my friends and staff are oral and done with my cell phone. I have the luxury of being in contact with them literally all the time. We now have a phone on the plane that is usable on the plane, so I just never really felt a need to do it.

More important than being able to send an e-mail …

"But I do - could I just say, really - I understand the impact of blogs on American politics today and political campaigns. I understand that.”

"And I understand that something appears on one blog, can ricochet all around and get into the evening news, the front page of The New York Times. So, I do pay attention to the blogs. And I am not in any way unappreciative of the impact that they have on entire campaigns and world opinion."

Understanding the impact of technology is far more important than being able to twiddle (or should I say twitter) with it.

“Mr Obama always carries his BlackBerry with him and is often seen on his campaign plane tapping out emails. The Internet has been central to his candidacy, allowing him to establish a network of grassroots activists and attract small donations.”

How nice … 

Sending little personalized messages to motivate campaign staff and make large contributors feel important.

The fact that Obama’s camp has used the Internet for fund raising and organizing a grass roots community has nothing to do with Obama’s personal ability to send and receive e-mails.

As the Chief Technologist for a computer corporation, I can assure you that the design, operation and governance of his web operations is beyond his personal knowledge and comfort level. In many cases these operations are outsourced to specialized firms.

And, wait a minute, didn’t I read somewhere that Obama’s camp simply hijacked an extremely large MySpace fan base from a fan who diligently created and maintained it as an homage to Obama. 

According to the Associated Press …

“For the past two and a half years, the page has been run by an Obama supporter from Los Angeles named Joe Anthony. At first, that arrangement was fine with the Obama team, which worked with Anthony on the content and even had the password to make changes themselves.”

“But as the site exploded in popularity in recent months, the campaign became concerned about an outsider having control of the content and responses going out under Obama's name and told Anthony they wanted him to turn it over.”

“In this new frontier of online campaigning, it's hard to determine the value of 160,000 MySpace friends—about four times what any other official campaign MySpace page has amassed. But the Obama campaign decided they wouldn't pay $39,000, which is what Anthony said he proposed for his extensive work on the site, plus some additional fees up to $10,000.”

“MySpace reluctantly stepped in to settle the dispute and decided that Obama should have the rights to control http://www.myspace.com/barackobama as of Monday night, while Anthony had the right to take the contact information for all the friends who signed up while he was in control. That includes the right to tell them exactly how he feels about the Obama campaign.”

The MySpace flap goes to illustrate the difference between the arrogance of Obama, who needed to authorize the theft of a fan site in order to jump start his web-based grass roots organizing and fundraising, and McCain who seems like a decent and principled individual.

So before Obama’s crew waffles on about their technological prowess in using the Internet, perhaps they should give some credit to someone who apparently showed them how to use it.

“Last month, Mark Soohoo, deputy director of Mr McCain's e-campaign, was mocked for insisting: "You don't necessarily have to use a computer to understand how it shapes the country." He also stated: "John McCain is aware of the Internet. This is a man who has a very long history of understanding on a range of issues."

“Jamal Simmons, a Democratic strategist with close ties to the Obama campaign, laughed heartily at Mr McCain's technological travails.”

"’It's just amazing,’ he told The Daily Telegraph. ‘It's very hard to even think about someone who doesn't know how to use the Internet. It's like, 'Really?' My five-year-old niece can use the Internet. She knows how to go to nickelodeon.com and play her games.’"

“’The interview could be politically damaging, he added. ‘The tough part is that if one of the concerns voters have is that you are out of touch with how they live, what they want, the problems they face, then this only reinforces that notion.’”

Perhaps Jamal wouldn’t be laughing quite so hard if …

... instead of concentrating on the amorphous concept of change and poking fun at McCain’s Internet skills, someone simply asked Jamal a few relevant questions.

Why is it that the black leadership has failed their core constituency in spite of the billions of dollars spent in supporting the black community?

Why is it that black students, ostensibly exposed to the Internet, do not have higher achievement scores than they did in the pre-Internet era?

Why is it that the black community has the highest incidence of single-parent families, children born out of wedlock and the highest internal crime rate of any other demographic?

And, instead of laughing at McCain’s computer skills, how about explaining why the black prison population far exceeds the demographic norms.

These are solid issues that need to be addressed by Obama and his handlers. Why is nobody asking him to justify why he is not dealing with these questions which do not have anything to do with technology and the ability to send e-mail or browse the Internet?

Perhaps if he put down his Crackberry for a moment, he might want to take the time to read a book. Hey, Jamal, why not start with “While African-Americans Slept: Leadership by Parasites” which is authored by Dr. Lenton Aikins.

If I could say anything to Jamal at this point in time, it would most likely be: put up or shut up – tell me exactly how you are going to change these severe and pressing problems using the Internet and e-mail. It seems the media lacks the guts for confrontation, fearing they might be cut out of the content generation that they need for their self-imposed 24/7 news cycle.

Closing with the age issue …

"He's a hero for what he did 35 years ago, but that doesn't necessarily make him the kind of president we want today. Here's somebody who is in many ways very disconnected from where people are."

I wonder if anybody really cares about McCain’s abilities when it comes to using the Internet … especially when he will be busy defending the America from her enemies, both foreign and domestic? Something that Barack Obama barely understands.

What can YOU do?

Do not be diverted from the basic issues of the campaign:

  • Defending the United States
  • Problems with energy independence
  • Problems with our economy
  • Problems with our crumbling infrastructure
  • Problems with our tax system

by those who waffle endlessly about a change which they refuse to define or attempt to divert your attention by age and technological prowess twaddle. Americans know what it important and need to hear from the candidates on substantive issues rather than the folderol about the Internet or a cartoon on a magazine cover.

Do not vote for any candidate or current politician who is willing to subvert the safety, security, sovereignty and economic strength of the United States or limit an individual's right of self-defense for their personal philosophy, power, prestige or profits.

-- steve

Quote of the day: “Politics, n. Strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles.” -- Ambrose Bierce

A reminder from OneCitizenSpeaking.com: a large improvement can result from a small change…

The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane. -- Marcus Aurelius

Reference Links:

John McCain 'technology illiterate' doesn't email or use Internet|Telegraph


“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


Yasser Arafat is truly in hell ...

and spinning wildly about as his name is used in an e-mail scam to bilk the gullible out of their money. Not that he did not perpetrate the same scam on both western and Arab nations as they paid him to control his “freedom fighters.”

But he must be in hell as his name is being used in a scam and he doesn’t get to see a dime of the ill-gotten money.

Dear Friend,

This mail may not be surprising to you if you have been following current events in the international media with reference to the Middle East and Palestine in particular.

I am Mrs. SUHA ARAFAT, the wife of YASSER ARAFAT, the Palestinian leader who died in Paris.

Since his death and even prior to the announcement, I have been thrown into a state of antagonism, confusion, humiliation, frustration and hopelessness by the present leadership of the Palestinian Liberation Organization and the new Prime Minister. I have even been subjected to physical and psychological torture. As a widow that is so traumatized, I have lost confidence in everybody in the country at the moment.

You must have heard over the media reports on the discovery of some funds in my husband's secret bank account and companies and the allegations of some huge sums of money deposited by my husband in my name of which I have refused to disclose or give up to the corrupt Palestine Government.

In fact, the total sum allegedly discovered by the Government so far is in the tune of about $6.5 Billion Dollars. And they are not relenting on their effort to make me poor for life.

I got your contact details from a trusted ally at the Palestinian Chamber of Commerce and Foreign Business Relations, during my quest for an honest partner in a monetary transaction.

Please for your confidential information only based on trust, i have a total deposit of 315 Million Dollars in the Following Seven Countries with specified Amounts respectively.

1. France: 25 Million United States Dollars.
2. U.A.E Dubai:  33 Million United States Dollars.
3. Spain:  45 Million United States Dollars.
4. United Kingdom: 85 Million United States Dollars.
5. South Africa: 70 Million United States Dollars.
6. Malaysia: 30 Million United States Dollars.
7. Canada : 27 Million United States Dollars.

I shall be grateful if you could at least receive one of these funds into your bank account for safe keeping and for any Investment opportunity. This arrangement is known to you and my personal Attorney. He might be dealing with you directly for security reasons as the case may be..

All our correspondence should be strictly on email because my phone lines are monitored.

In view of the above, if you are willing to assist for our mutual benefits, we will have to negotiate on your Percentage share of any of the above you can help me secure that will be kept in your position for a while and invested in your name for my trust pending when my Daughter, Zahwa, will come off age and take full responsibility of her Family Estate/inheritance.
Please let me know which of the destinations above will be easier and convinient for you incase you are required to travel for the same.

Please note that, in consideration of your total honesty, I am going to entrust more funds in your care as this is one of the legacy we keep for our children.

In case you don't accept please do not let me out to the security and international media as I am giving you this information in total trust and confidence. I will greatly appreciate if you accept my proposal in good faith. Please expedite action.You can email me at my private email address: [e-mail address removed for security]
Yours sincerely,

Mrs. Suha Arafat

Imagine the irony of a non-Muslim blogger with a history of writing anti-IslamoFascism blog entries being endorsed by a member of the Palestinian Chamber of Commerce? I was, of course, unaware that the maggots actually had a Chamber of Commerce … as I always thought that their idea of a chamber was a “torture chamber” or “chamber of horrors.”

It is also must annoy Arafat no end that, even in a scam, that his faux money is denominated in dollars and is on the wrong side of the currency exchange curve.

And I am so pleased that this phony Mrs. Arafat wants to provide for her children while the children of the Palestinian people are trained as suicide bombers in order to create the political havoc and terrorism necessary for the Palestinian Authority to shake down other countries in order to keep some semblance of the peace.

Of course, I know this is a bogus scam attempt. But somehow it annoys me that there is a real Mrs. Yasser Arafat, living well in France, on the billion or so dollars that her wretched husband stole from his own wretched and misguided people. Aided and abetted by the French who see the money and not the morality of the situation. Otherwise they would have booted her sorry ass out of the country.

--  steve


“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


Global Warming: The right way to challenge scientific findings ...

UPDATE (07-21-08) ON PEER REVIEW ...

It seems that both sides of the debate have gotten their "knickers in a twist" over the Monckton affair. Some because of the science, some because of the editor's gall to allow the article to be published and others because of the "peer review" issue. Truth-be-told, a number of papers put forth by prominent climatological scientists were presented without peer review. It is my personal opinion that peer review is what happens after the paper is published, not before. To illustrate the problematical nature of pre-publication peer reviews, I would like to present a quote from the editor of one of the world's most prestigeous medical journal, The Lancet.

“The mistake, of course, is to have thought that peer review was any more than a crude means of discovering the acceptability — not the validity — of a new finding. Editors and scientists alike insist on the pivotal importance of peer review. We portray peer review to the public as a quasi-sacred process that helps to make science our most objective truth teller. But we know that the system of peer review is biased, unjust, unaccountable, incomplete, easily fixed, often insulting, usually ignorant, occasionally foolish, and frequently wrong.” - Richard Horton, editor of The Lancet

To paraphrase Charlie Sheen's character in Wall Street: "Debate is Good, Debate Clarifies ..."

UPDATE (07-19-08) APS CHALLENGED BY MONCKTON OVER COMMENTS

In reaction to the APS assertion that Monckton's work was not peer-reviewed and that its conclusions ran counter to the prevailing consensus of work on global climate change, Monckton has demanded satisfaction ... in the interests of encouraging further scientific debate on the issue of global weather change, we are publishing Lord Monckton's letter to the APS.

19 July 2008

The Viscount Monckton of Brenchley
Carie, Rannoch, PH17 2QJ, UK
monckton@mail.com

Arthur Bienenstock, Esq., Ph.D.,
President, American Physical Society,
Wallenberg Hall,
450 Serra Mall, Bldg 160,
Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA 94305.
By email to artieb@slac.stanford.edu

Dear Dr. Bienenstock,

Physics and Society

The editors of Physics and Society, a newsletter of the American Physical Society, invited me to submit a paper for their July 2008 edition explaining why I considered that the warming that might be expected from anthropogenic enrichment of the atmosphere with carbon dioxide might be significantly less than the IPCC imagines.

I very much appreciated this courteous offer, and submitted a paper. The commissioning editor referred it to his colleague, who subjected it to a thorough and competent scientific review. I was delighted to accede to all of the reviewer’s requests for revision (see the attached reconciliation sheet). Most revisions were intended to clarify for physicists who were not climatologists the method by which the IPCC evaluates climate sensitivity - a method which the IPCC does not itself clearly or fully explain. The paper was duly published, immediately after a paper by other authors setting out the IPCC’s viewpoint. Some days later, however, without my knowledge or consent, the following appeared, in red, above the text of my paper as published on the website of Physics and Society:

“The following article has not undergone any scientific peer review. Its conclusions are in disagreement with the overwhelming opinion of the world scientific community. The Council of the American Physical Society disagrees with this article’s conclusions.”

This seems discourteous. I had been invited to submit the paper; I had submitted it; an eminent Professor of Physics had then scientifically reviewed it in meticulous detail; I had revised it at all points requested, and in the manner requested; the editors had accepted and published the reviewed and revised draft (some 3000 words longer than the original) and I had expended considerable labor, without having been offered or having requested any honorarium.

Please either remove the offending red-flag text at once or let me have the name and qualifications of the member of the Council or advisor to it who considered my paper before the Council ordered the offending text to be posted above my paper; a copy of this rapporteur’s findings and ratio decidendi; the date of the Council meeting at which the findings were presented; a copy of the minutes of the discussion; and a copy of the text of the Council’s decision, together with the names of those present at the meeting. If the Council has not scientifically evaluated or formally considered my paper, may I ask with what credible scientific justification, and on whose authority, the offending text asserts primo, that the paper had not been scientifically reviewed when it had; secundo, that its conclusions disagree with what is said (on no evidence) to be the “overwhelming opinion of the world scientific community”; and, tertio, that “The Council of the American Physical Society disagrees with this article’s conclusions”? Which of my conclusions does the Council disagree with, and on what scientific grounds (if any)?

Having regard to the circumstances, surely the Council owes me an apology?

Yours truly,
THE VISCOUNT MONCKTON OF BRENCHLEY

Original Blog Entry ...

The well-respected  American Physical Society is starting to show signs of internal turmoil which will lead to more enlightened discussions of the science of global warming.

On one hand, the APS appears to be supporting the concept of global warming as promoted by the United Nations …

“The American Physical Society reaffirms the following position on climate change, adopted by its governing body, the APS Council, on November 18, 2007: ‘Emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities are changing the atmosphere in ways that affect the Earth's climate.’"

And on the other hand, they are apparently disavowing comments made by one of their 49 member groups …

“An article at odds with this statement recently appeared in an online newsletter of the APS Forum on Physics and Society, one of 39 units of APS.  The header of this newsletter carries the statement that ‘Opinions expressed are those of the authors alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the APS or of the Forum.’  This newsletter is not a journal of the APS and it is not peer reviewed.”

The APS national policy …

National Policy: 07.1 CLIMATE CHANGE

(Adopted by Council on November 18, 2007)

“Emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities are changing the atmosphere in ways that affect the Earth's climate. Greenhouse gases include carbon dioxide as well as methane, nitrous oxide and other gases. They are emitted from fossil fuel combustion and a range of industrial and agricultural processes.”

“The evidence is incontrovertible: Global warming is occurring. If no mitigating actions are taken, significant disruptions in the Earth’s physical and ecological systems, social systems, security and human health are likely to occur. We must reduce emissions of greenhouse gases beginning now.”

“Because the complexity of the climate makes accurate prediction difficult, the APS urges an enhanced effort to understand the effects of human activity on the Earth’s climate, and to provide the technological options for meeting the climate challenge in the near and longer terms. The APS also urges governments, universities, national laboratories and its membership to support policies and actions that will reduce the emission of greenhouse gases.”

Mirroring the position of the United Nations …

Which sums up the positions of the United Nations and others who egotistically assume that man’s puny efforts can have a mitigating effect on a natural phenomenon whose causality and susceptibility to human intervention are unknown. All of the information that is fueling the debate comes from deeply flawed or extremely limited computer models that purport to be accurate as they match certain direct or imputed historical climate data for a limited portion of time. Unfortunately, what is not being discussed is the nature of the forcing adjustments and manipulation of raw data in order to reduce anomalies in the reported results.

Non-controversy: The following statement appeared in the APS’s Forum on Physics & Society

“With this issue of Physics & Society, we kick off a debate concerning one of the main conclusions of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the UN body which, together with Al Gore, recently won the Nobel Prize for its work concerning climate change research. There is a considerable presence within the scientific community of people who do not agree with the IPCC conclusion that anthropogenic CO2 emissions are very probably likely to be primarily responsible for the global warming that has occurred since the Industrial Revolution.”

Since the correctness or fallacy of that conclusion has immense implications for public policy and for the future of the biosphere, we thought it appropriate to present a debate within the pages of P&S concerning that conclusion. This editor (JJM) invited several people to contribute articles that were either pro or con.”

“Christopher  Monckton responded with this issue's article that argues against the correctness of the IPCC conclusion, and a pair from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, David Hafemeister and Peter Schwartz, responded with this issue's article in favor of the IPCC conclusion.”

“We, the editors of P&S, invite reasoned rebuttals from the authors as well as further contributions from the physics community. Please contact me [e-mail address removed for security]  if you wish to jump into this fray with comments or articles that are scientific in nature. However, we will not publish articles that are political or polemical in nature. Stick to the science! (JJM)”

This is the way scientific exposition should be done. Congratulations to Jeffrey Marque who is acting as the moderator in this critical debate in his role as the editor of the forum.

There is no doubt that this should be the official policy of the Society: a willingness to examine both sides of the issue and allow a free and open debate among qualified scientists before attempting to politicalize science and disrupt the political, scientific and economic fabric of the United States with their weighty endorsement.

What can YOU do?

Demand that your elected officials refrain from acting like hysterical sheep, creating legislation to solve scientific problems which remain ill-defined and in need to fundamental research.

If legislators are wont to craft legislation, let them craft pollution policies which cannot be simply mitigated by buying pollution credits from a Wall Street carbon credit brokers or vendors such as Al Gore’s organization. I think we can all agree that it is far more important to resolve and eliminate the problems associated with local pollution rather than worrying about mitigating the effects of what pollution is produced in India, China, Russia and the rest of the world.

I, for one, do not want to see a larger government, pay higher taxes and further restrict my lifestyle based on speculative science or the results of an unverifiable computerized weather model. There is much research and argumentation to be done before a true course of public policy can be set.

In the final analysis, science is not performed by consensus or the opinions of politicians and laymen. The process of scientific inquiry is well-defined and there are no shortcuts.

Ignore the whiners, the ravers and those who are simply hysterical shills, Al Gore comes to mind, for their own self-interest ventures to take money out of your pocket and place it in theirs.

-- steve

A reminder from OneCitizenSpeaking.com: a large improvement can result from a small change…

The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane. -- Marcus Aurelius

Reference Links:

DailyTech - Myth of Consensus Explodes: APS Opens Global Warming Debate

A Tutorial on the Basic Physics of Climate Change
By David Hafemeister & Peter Schwartz

Abstract: In this paper, we have used several basic atmospheric–physics models to show that additional carbon dioxide will warm the surface of Earth. We also show that observed solar variations cannot account for observed global temperature increase.

Climate Sensitivity Reconsidered
By Christopher Monckton

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC, 2007) concluded that anthropogenic CO2 emissions probably caused more than half of the “global warming” of the past 50 years and would cause further rapid warming. However, global mean surface temperature has not risen since 1998 and may have fallen since late 2001. The present analysis suggests that the failure of the IPCC’s models to predict this and many other climatic phenomena arises from defects in its evaluation of the three factors whose product is climate sensitivity:


“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


YESTERDAY (7/17/08) WAS A "WTF" DAY

Schwarzenegger … It’s not borrowing, it’s a gift from the future …

Update (07-17-08) ... the ULTIMATE DERIVATIVE ...

We have all seen what effect the Wall Street Wizards and their derivative products have had on our economy. So it comes as no surprise that Schwarzenegger wants to create his own brand of derivative by securitizing the California Lottery's cash flow for the next 15 years ...

"Schwarzenegger suggested in May that the state 'securitize' $15 billion over three years from Wall Street by promising future lottery revenues to investors. The plan would sell $5 billion in bonds immediately to help offset the deficit. Schwarzenegger has insisted the plan is not a borrowing scheme and called it 'a gift from the future.'" <Source: CapitolAlert.com>

Dumbkopff:  By definition bonds are a form of borrowing -- "A debt instrument issued for a period of more than one year with the purpose of raising capital by borrowing." Perhaps we should forgive him, as he is probably reading the script supplied by his democrat friends on Wall Street. He either doesn't understand or is lying to California's legal citizens.

Original Blog Entry ...

Arnold Schwarzenegger – Republican In Name Only – once again was confronted with his lack of leadership since 2003.

The man who claimed he was “too rich to be bought” has proved to be a more prolific fundraiser than his predecessor Gray Davis and his creation of special foundations has masked any number of special interest contributions; which are seemingly earmarked for the governor’s lavish lifestyle and travel expenses.

Claiming to be “for the people” by being a “post partisan” governor, Schwarzenegger overlooked a significant number of opportunities to appoint qualified Republicans to important positions of influence, Schwarzenegger appointed hard-core left-leaning democrats. Even his Chief of Staff is a hard-core life-long leftist lesbian democrat.

But his most stunning failure is his inability to curb the profligate spending of the democrat-led legislature and lead California away from a $16 BILLION deficit in times when the state’s revenue exceeded population growth and the inflationary cost of living.

Schwarzenegger proved that he could do little else than “strike poses” as he resorted to financial legerdemain to solve the last budget crisis by papering over the crisis with funds transferred from other state accounts, issued bonds and accounting tricks.

This year the Governor was hoping to sell the rights to the California Lottery revenue stream so that the proceeds would erase much of the existing deficit and he could continue to play the “governator” hero of the people role he has come to narcissistically cherish. To illustrate Schwarzenegger’s total lack of financial acumen, media reports aside, we present the following quote.

From Capitol Alert.com …

Lawmakers are seriously considering grabbing money from local government and transportation funds to balance this year's $15.2 billion budget deficit, say advocates for those programs.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have repeatedly proclaimed in public that they want to tackle the state's structural budget problems -- not just paper over the budget with borrowing to get out of town.

In an interview with The Bee on Wednesday, Schwarzenegger reiterated his opposition to new borrowing.

"Any time you go and do those things, it's maybe one way of getting out of the situation and coming up with a compromise, but I don't think it's the right way to go," said Schwarzenegger.

HUH?

“He insisted his lottery proposal was not borrowing. ‘Borrowing means that you have to pay back. But this is a gift from the future,’ he said.”

Yeah right, gift from the future!

“At the same time, the governor's office has been involved in the discussions about taking the transportation and local government funds, advocates say.”

“The transportation and local government borrowing would come from two sources.”

“The first would transfer property taxes away from local governments to area schools. That would lower the amount of school spending that musts come out of the state's general fund, helping balance the state's books.”

“The second would divert gas sales tax revenues from transportation projects -- such as highway construction and mass transit -- to the state's general fund. Voters similarly restricted that practice in 2006, with provisions akin to the limits on taking funds from local government.”

“Earp said that while the raid is allowed by law, ‘It was never meant to deal with the structural deficit. It was meant to deal with a short-term cash flow problem.’"

Perhaps Schwarzenegger is watching too many science fiction movies and does not realize that the selling the future revenue stream of the California lottery is exactly the same as borrowing the money now and paying it back with future revenues … no different from selling bonds – except the purchasers would be allowed to keep all of the money earned with enhanced lottery promotions which seek to plague the poorest among us.  Between Indian Gaming compacts and the lottery – we are rolling the dice on our future.

Continuing with our WTF day …

The Rehabilitation of Franklin Raines …

What’s wrong with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac: Let’s ask the guy who ripped off Fannie Mae for millions with crooked accounting. Surely his opinion counts for something? 

Why the Washington Post would ever give editorial space to Franklin Raines, the politically-connected power broker who was found to have cooked Fannie Mae’s books to earn multi-million dollar bonuses is beyond me. The Washington Post article, “The Help Fannie and Freddie Need,” made the case that Fannie and Freddie were sound entities and do not need a government bailout.

From the Washington Post …

“Don't bail out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. They don't need it. The losses they face are not surprising, given what's happened to housing prices. They have more than enough capital to meet their cash obligations when those become due, which is the most basic definition of solvency. They also have hundreds of billions of dollars' worth of unencumbered assets that can be used as collateral for secured borrowing, were that to become necessary. The recent Treasury proposals do not change these facts.”

“What the companies need from Washington is policy clarity. I say this not just on the basis of my experience as an executive at Fannie Mae but also because of my experience as director of the Office of Management and Budget and my time as an investment banker in the 1980s, when I helped solve the problems of cities and states in financial crisis.”

Followed by Raines advice to President Bush, Federal Reserve Secretary Bernanke, Treasury Secretary Paulson and everybody else on his list. (see the reference link if you want to read the full-on drivel from Raines)

The Post identified Raines with this blurb …

“The writer was chairman and chief executive of Fannie Mae from 1999 to 2004 and served as director of the Office of Management and Budget in the Clinton administration. He receives a pension and deferred compensation from Fannie Mae and owns stock in the company.”

Sounds great, BUT … what the paper failed to point out was  …

From Wikipedia

“On December 21, 2004 Raines accepted what he called ‘early retirement’ from his position as CEO while U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission investigators continued to investigate alleged accounting irregularities. He is accused by The Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO), the regulating body of Fannie Mae, of abetting widespread accounting errors, which included the shifting of losses so senior executives, such as himself, could earn large bonuses.”

In 2006, the OFHEO announced a suit against Raines in order to recover some or all of the $50 million in payments made to Raines based on the overstated earnings initially estimated to be $9 billion but have been announced as 6.3 billion.

“Civil charges were filed against Raines and two other former executives by the OFHEO in which the OFHEO sought $110 million in penalties and $115 million in returned bonuses from the three accused. On April 18, 2008, the government announced a settlement with Raines together with J. Timothy Howard, Fannie's former chief financial officer, and Leanne G. Spencer, Fannie's former controller. The three executives agreed to pay fines totaling about $3 million, which will be paid by Fannie's insurance policies. Raines also agreed to donate the proceeds from the sale of $1.8 million of his Fannie stock and to give up stock options. The stock options however have no value. Raines also gave up an estimated $5.3 million of ‘other benefits’ said to be related to his pension and foregone bonuses.

“An editorial in The Wall Street Journal called it a ‘paltry settlement’ which allowed Raines and the other two executives to ‘keep the bulk of their riches.’ In 2003 alone, Raines's compensation was over $20 million.”

“A statement issued by Raines said of the consent order, "is consistent with my acceptance of accountability as the leader of Fannie Mae and with my strong denial of the allegations made against me by OFHEO."

“In a settlement with OFHEO and the Securities and Exchange Commission, Fannie paid a record $400 million civil fine. Fannie, which is the largest American financier and guarantor of home mortgages, also agreed to make changes in its corporate culture and accounting procedures and ways of managing risk.”

This man is a thief. He stole money from his shareholders with his suspect accounting games as surely as if he had robbed them with a gun. There were so many accounting failures that Fannie Mae may have spent well over $1 BILLION dollars to audit itself. In addition to accounting problems, there was the little matter of double dipping in the Fannie Mae foundation and massive lobbying expenses to persuade Congress to keep the money flowing and the regulatory hand light … which are also not mentioned.

Why?

It is believed that this article is the first in a series in an attempt to rehabilitate Raines reputation so that he can take a larger place in the Obama Administration. He currently serves as an advisor to Obama on housing issues.

Like I said, this was a WTF day …

It is amazing. Political smoke and mirrors. And the press is apparently not doing its part to fully disclose what seems to be going on behind the scenes at government. It seems that they are all jockeying for the right to be included in Barack Obama’s trip to Iraq.

What can YOU do?

Now that we have seen what is happening in California, I urge my fellow Californian’s to simply vote out all of the incumbents in favor of a fresh start. Both political parties have sold us out as they jointly plundered the California Treasury. And let’s send this aging movie star back to Hollywood where nothing is as it really seems and the reality is tightly scripted. The thought of Schwarzenegger serving as the Energy Czar in an Obama Administration is beyond belief.

As for Obama, we can plainly see that he is apparently an old-fashioned Chicago politician who is at home among thieves, terrorists, bigots and the anti-America left. If it wasn’t for the polarization of Hillary Clinton and the prospect of Bill Clinton returning to the White House, Obama would never have become the heir apparent.

But he is clearly unworthy of the office of the presidency as he is too inexperienced, too radical, too untrustworthy … and is an empty suit with a preacher’s oratorical skills. Nothing more, nothing less.

Question what you are now seeing in the media. They have failed to do their job and we, all of us legal Americans, are being railroaded to an uncertain future which marks the decline of the United States as the great nation it once was. We are selling off our nation piece-by-piece at the same time we are diluting our national culture with illegal aliens who are demanding citizenship – so they can, sometime in the future, vote us out of our own house.

It is now time to take action and make your voice and vote count. While McCain is not much better than Obama, hopefully his vice presidential choice will be a stabilizing influence and that we can threaten Congress with a devastating recall should they continue to undermine the United States. What truly is needed is another party – one not made up of a coalition of far-left radicals and freaks, one that works for the people instead of feathering their own nest and the nests of their friends at our expense. I cannot see how the corrupt, chaotic and increasingly far-left democrat party can survive. Where are the honorable men like Joe Lieberman and Zell Miller?

VOTE LIKE YOUR FUTURE DEPENDS ON IT – AS IT SURELY DOES!

-- steve

Quote of the Day: Hollywood and Washington are the only two places in this great nation where perception trumps reality and the players award themselves bonus money for what should have been rather that what really was.” -- steve

A reminder from OneCitizenSpeaking.com: a large improvement can result from a small change…

The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane. -- Marcus Aurelius

Reference Links:

Raids feared on funds for transportation, local government |Sacramento Bee -  CapitolAlert.com

Franklin D. Raines - The Help Fannie and Freddie Need - washingtonpost.com


“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS