sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Thursday, January 28, 2010

California Parks Initiative 2010 - Bad Idea

You will note that (below) I posted an opposition to the California Parks Initiative (raise taxes for State Parks in California).  The explanation I received at the initiative table in front of Home Depot was that Sierra Club would administer the program. People responded to my cry of foul and explained that the Sierra Club ENDORSES but will not manage the program.  Mia Culpa - it appears that the State simply wants more tax money to do what they should already be doing with existing tax money.

Sierra Club and it's horrible record of supporting programs that are not in the nation's best interests aside, I wish to express why I think that increasing TAXES further is a BAD IDEA.

And since I'm sure there will be people who challenge my conclusions, I'm including links so they can review the basic data for themselves.

1. Californians have the highest personal state income tax in the nation. (based on rate and where that rate capps vs the median income of earners in the state)

2. Californians pay the highest state sales tax in the nation. (just look at the chart and decide for yourself)

3. Californians pay AMONG the most in state exicse tax for fuel in the nation. (chart here)

If California wants to put more effort into maintaing its parks, and I certainly have no problem with that effort, LET THEM REDUCE ENTITLEMENT or simply suggest to legislators that they find the money in the vast morass that is California's sloppy spending habits.

Businesses are leaving California in record numbers because of the unfavorable business environment that has been created in California. Changing that trend should increase revenue - and maybe some of that money can be earmarked for parks - but a NEW TAX is a bad idea.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Oppose Calif State Parks Initiative 2010

Radical liberalism/utopian socialism takes many forms. One California ballot initiative that they are collecting signatures to appear on the 2010 ballot in November is the California State Parks Initiative.

I went to Home Depot to buy Chinese made stuff and a guy sat outside collecting signatures for ballot initiatives. One of them particularly drew my attention. What it will do is collect on the order of $20.00 from every car registered (new tax) which won't go to the state - it will go to the Sierra Club - to administer California's Park Service.

Carl Pope is the Executive Director of the Sierra Club. He's also on the executive committee of George Soros' organization, America Coming Together.

A self-described "radical," Carl Pope has been the Executive Director of the Sierra Club -- one of America’s largest and most influential environmentalist groups -- since 1992. In the 1960s Pope was a supporter of Students for a Democratic Society. After graduating from Harvard College in 1967, he volunteered for the Peace Corps and spent several years working in India. That experience converted Pope to the environmentalist cause of limiting population growth.

Giving taxpayer money to the Sierra Club to have them do what the state should be doing is like giving money to ACORN.

Please join me in opposing the California State Parks Initiative!

Saturday, January 23, 2010


It's all about HOW you approach problems. The United States of America accounts for 25% of the wealth generated on the planet at the moment. People from the outside looking in wonder how we can continue to be great to spite such inept leadership. It still goes back to the attitude Americans have. Americans work harder, more hours on an annual basis than any other developed nation.

People wonder how Americans can feel secure when so many of their neighbors are well armed and supplied with ammunition. Most Americans feel secure BECAUSE their neighbors are well armed and supplied. .02% of all firearms manufactured are used in crimes. The number is statistically insignificant. Private ownership of firearms, a guaranteed right under the Constitution reflects an American attitude not held by most of the rest of the world where the government disarms its citizens. Americans have a different attitude.

There is no more generous nation on the planet than the United States of America. We're willing to help everyone, including slum nations such as Haiti, which routinely demonstrated their contempt for us over the years. Gracious assistance of others without hope of repayment is part the American attitude. There are always calls for relief of somebody else that needs help, and Americans dig deep in their pockets. 

We need to remember the attitude that it took to create our nation. We need to remember the sacrifice and blood others shed so that we can have what we do. The nation is strong because we as a people haven't simply talked the talk (and I'm not pointing fingers at the Europeans), we have walked the walk.

Friday, January 22, 2010

More Teleprompter Speeches!

Barack Hussein Obama doesn't think we get it. People voted for Scott Brown after he endorsed Coakley. What happened to the old Obama magic and what's he going to do about it?
The first thing he's promised is to give more speeches. He gave 411 speeches and 158 interviews last year... but he thinks it's not nearly enough. He's chopping but the chips aren't flying. The lies are NOT sinking in and he's bound and determined to speak until we believe his line.
He's also promised to go after evil bankers and essentially wiping them out so that the government will have sole control over all banking in the United States. It's not comforting since it is the government that brought about the banking crisis. Our leader, a utopian socialist, believes that government is the only solution and he's going to do his best to demonstrate it -- as unemployment numbers continue to rise. He wants to put more people on the government payroll to "fully employ everyone" without understanding that it's private taxpayer dollars that grease the gears of state.
My message to Obama: Stop blaming George W. Bush for your inept management of government. People think you're the worst president in history right now. Blaming Bush for your decisions will keep you in the last place slot for a long time.
As Paul Krugman, the New York Times' "Conscience of a Liberal," put it: "He Wasn't The One We've Been Waiting For." Not the once-delirious Europeans, either. As the headline in Der Spiegel put it: "The World Bids Farewell To Obama."

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Democratic Dreams

The Curse of Opportunity

By George Will
Wednesday, January 20, 2010

"We are on the precipice of an achievement that's eluded congresses and presidents for generations."
-- President Barack Obama, Dec. 15, on health care legislation.

Precipice, 1. a headlong fall or decent, esp. to a great depth. 
-- Oxford English Dictionary

WASHINGTON -- Trying to guarantee Americans the thrill of the precipice, the president dashed to Massachusetts on Sunday, thereby conceding that he had already lost Tuesday's Senate election, which had become a referendum on his signature program. By promising to cast the decisive 41st vote against the president's health care legislation, the Republican candidate forced all congressional Democrats to contemplate this: Not even frenzied national mobilization of Democratic manpower and millions of dollars could rescue one of the safest Democratic seats in the national legislature from national dismay about the incontinent government expansion, of which that legislation is symptomatic.

Because the legislation is frightening and unpopular, Democrats have had to resort to serial bribery to advance it. Massachusetts voted immediately after the corruption of exempting, until 2018, union members from the tax on high-value health insurance plans. This tax was supposedly the crucial component of what supposedly was reform's primary goal -- reducing costs.

The late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, D-N.Y., thought Bill Clinton's presidency was crippled by the 1993 decision to pursue health care reform rather than welfare reform. So slight was public enthusiasm for the former, Clinton's program never even came to a vote in either the House or Senate, both controlled by Democrats. There was such fervor for welfare reform that in 1996, after two Clinton vetoes, he finally signed the decade's most important legislation.

In their joyless, tawdry slog toward passage of their increasingly ludicrous bill, Democrats cling grimly to Robert Frost's axiom that "the best way out is always through." Their sole remaining reason for completing the damn thing is that they started it. They seem to have convinced themselves that Democrats lost control of Congress in 1994 because they did not pass an unpopular health bill in 1993. Actually, their 1994 debacle had more to do with the arrogance and malfeasance arising from 40 years of control of the House of Representatives (e.g., the House banking scandal), a provocative crime bill (gun control, federal subsidies for midnight basketball), and other matters.

With one piece of legislation, Obama and his congressional allies have done in one year what it took President Lyndon Johnson and his allies two years to do in 1965 and 1966 -- revive conservatism. Today conservatism is rising on the stepping stones of liberal excesses.

Between FDR's reprimand by voters in the 1938 midterm congressional elections (partly because of his anti-constitutional plan to enlarge and pack the Supreme Court) and LBJ's 1964 trouncing of Barry Goldwater, there was no liberal legislating majority in Congress: Republicans and conservative Democrats combined to temper liberalism's itch to overreach. In 1965 and 1966, however, liberalism was rampant. Today, Democrats worrying about a reprise of 1994 should worry more about a rerun of the 1966 midterm elections, which began a Republican resurgence that presaged victories in seven of the next 10 presidential elections.

The 2008 elections gave liberals the curse of opportunity, and they have used it to reveal themselves ruinously. The protracted health care debacle has highlighted this fact: Some liberals consider the legislation's unpopularity a reason to redouble their efforts to inflict it on Americans who, such liberals think, are too benighted to understand that their betters know best. The essence of contemporary liberalism is the illiberal conviction that Americans, in their comprehensive incompetence, need minute supervision by government, which liberals believe exists to spare citizens the torture of thinking and choosing.

Last week, trying to buttress the bovine obedience of most House Democrats, Obama assured them that if the bill becomes law, "the American people will suddenly learn that this bill does things they like." Suddenly?

If the Democrats' congressional leaders are determined to continue their kamikaze flight to incineration, they will ignore Massachusetts' redundant evidence of public disgust. They will leaven their strategy of briberies with procedural cynicism -- delaying certification of Massachusetts' Senate choice, or misusing "reconciliation" to evade Senate rules, or forcing the House to swallow its last shred of pride in order to rush the Senate bill to the president's desk. Surely any such trickery would be one brick over a load for some hitherto servile members of the Democratic House and Senate caucuses, giving them an excuse to halt their party's Gadarene rush toward the precipice.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Lt Col Allen West - Candidate

Florida District 22 Congressional Candidate LTC Allen West, US Army (Ret). Do yourself a favor and listen to what he has to say. I'd say he's a model for the kind of man we need to take on Washington and return the Congress and the Capitol to the people of the United States.

A Plan for Haiti

By anyone's measure, Haiti is only slightly worse off because of the earthquake than it was before. The place is a festering sewer for breeding newer and deadlier viruses, it's the "heart of darkness", it's a cruel despotic state where the rule of law has completely failed. And then the earthquake hit and the world is taking a look at this Francophone paradise asking itself, "WHAT can be done?"

I have a few serious suggestions:

Since it is a French-speaking country, it's more effective if the French take ownership of the place and the US, suspend the Monroe Doctrine in this one case. The French can send a mixed force of infantry, light armor and, of course, the Foreign Legion to bring things to heel. French companies can set up businesses there on the tropical paradise and employ the people living there. The French should set up a government in interim for the next decade until the Haitians are ready to hold free and fair elections. (it might take longer than a decade but we can start there)

Long term, the French Foreign Legion can serve as the police and military force for the Island. It will employ mercenaries from around the world, will serve French interests and will bring Haitian organized crime down. Tourism will return, business will return and the place might just turn around given many years to do so. (Legio Patria Nostra)

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Who's in charge in Haiti?

Pre-earthquake and post-earthquake, the answer is the same.

To understand Haitian culture, one must take a trip back into history (and I won't bore you with too many details). The Haitian people's heritage and history began when the French imported African peoples who they enslaved. Those slaves worked sugar plantations. In the 1700's and much of the 1800's the sugar was used to create an alcoholic beverage known then (and now) as rum. The slaves successfully revolted against the French and set up their own nation, which became Haiti. Most Haitians are recipients of their cultural bias toward: France, Voodoo, and brute violence of a sort not seen in the rest of the Americas. As a result, the society is base, corruption is rampant and life is cheap.

Fast forward a gang of thugs formed under the leadership of François (Papa Doc) Duvalier. The official name of this thug army was the Milice de Volontaires de la Sécurité Nationale (MVSN) (Militia of National Security Volunteers), also called just the Volontaires de la Sécurité Nationale or VSN. The common name for this 'paramilitary militia' was the Tonton Macoutes. The name Tonton Macoutes, literally translated "Uncle Gunnysack" is derived from the legend of an old man, who walked the dimly lighted Haitian streets at night and would kidnap children who stayed out too late. He stuffed them into a gunnysack and they were hauled away, never to be heard from again. Use your imagination in deciding how this paramilitary force operated in Haiti. However base your imagination, I doubt it will reach the depths of depravity found in the ranks of the Tonton Macoutes.

Today that same gang, the Tonton Macoutes run Haiti. Aid delivered to refugees will be filtered through the street gang/organized crime group that runs the island nation and will be SOLD to the poor, or stockpiled against a day of need by the Tonton Macoutes (whatever the name the select - it's all the same). The BBC reported that Haiti is the most corrupt country in the world. (CLICK HERE) . According to the article, Transparency International placed Haiti #1 for corruption, followed by Bangladesh, Burma, Iraq, etc. Take a moment to read the article and then decide for yourself who will be receiving your aid money/goods.

(HINT: It won't be the suffering people)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Little Moments

It's the name of my daughter, Heather's new blog. She's a very good photographer and it's a place where she will be posting some of her work. If you have a moment, drop by.

Friday, January 15, 2010

SEIU - Scheming

The Teamsters Union had a dream - remember Jimmy Hoffa? The pension fund was a private piggy bank owned by organized crime.

They were real pikers when compared to SEIU. SEIU has forged unholy deals with the US Congress, has engaged in privately "assisting" legislators personal needs and wants, and after the demise of their sister organization, ACORN, they're the street team of the radical left.

In order for SEIU to unionize all healthcare workers (and skim from the 20% of the national economy they represent), the Congress must pass the "CARD CHECK" legislation. Obama must the various bills passed and in place prior to the 2010 elections. If that deadline is not met, all is lost for his cause. The bills he needs to have in place are the Health Care bill with the public option, the card check bill and the Cap and Trade energy tax.

We already know that if the health care bill is passed the SEIU stands to make a ton of money by forcing union membership on everyone in the government run system. But becoming the largest union in the world is just a fringe benefit. The SEIU’s job is to make sure that once the legislation is in place, no one can tear it down. This is why the Card Check bill is so important. It would allow the SEIU to enslave the health care workers without bothering to let them vote for it. A silly requirement of getting enough cards signed can be easily met by lying to the workers or just forging them. Unions while trying to organize have used both of theses strategies.

(free republic relied upon for some of this post)

Haiti - People who hate Americans

The Haitians have long hated America and Americans. Perhaps it has to do with envy?

Haiti's regional, historical, and ethnolinguistic position is unique for several reasons. It was the first independent nation in Latin America, the first post-colonial independent black-led nation in the world, and the only nation whose independence was gained as part of a successful slave rebellion. 

Despite having common cultural links with its Hispano-Caribbean neighbors, Haiti is the only predominantly Francophone independent nation in the Americas. It is one of only two independent nations in the Western Hemisphere (along with Canada) that designates French as an official language

Haiti is THE most screwed up place on the planet - before the earthquake. And that's quite a statement when you consider the cesspools on this planet: Somalia, Liberia, Ethiopia, Bangladesh, etc. Hatians HATE Americans as a rule, preferring to believe that they have some connection to France, which ruled them when they were a "sugar island" a hundred years ago. 

If you throw seeds onto the ground, they'll sprout in the lush soil, blessed by equatorial warmth and rain. But people in Haiti starve in normal times. 

I don't think we should deny aid, but I don't think we should send any until FRANCE does. And then we should match the French contribution...

The photo (left) if of Haiti before the earthquake leveled the shanty towns that house the inhabitants of that island of industrious people.

I wonder if Barack Hussein Obama might not want to go to Haiti and be THEIR leader when his term of office in the US has passed in 2012?

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Obama - Doesn't Care

Jumbo mortgages are mortgages that exceed the amount allowed to be purchased by Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae. In many areas of the United States, the limits for a jumbo mortgage range from $417,000 to $625,000.  (I live in California. It's tough to buy a house and have a mortgage under $417K so they're almost all jumbo)

In the past year, delinquencies of US Prime Jumbo Mortgages Tripled in Latest Year to Exceed 9%! (Source: Fitch Ratings)

Overall, prime RMBS 60+ days delinquencies rose to 9.2% for December 2009, up almost three times compared to the same period last year (3.2% in December 2008). The 2006/2007 vintages combined rose to 12.7% from 4.3%.

Despite some improvement in home prices and a slowdown in employment loss, roll rates have not improved primarily due to the number of prime jumbo borrowers who owe more on their mortgages than their home is worth. Over one-third of prime jumbo borrowers that are current on their mortgages also are ‘underwater’ on their mortgages [For details, see Fitch RMBS Performance Metrics]

I'm going to hazard a guess and suggest that if you don't fall into this category, your boss might. You may not like your boss, but then again, without the boss, you might not have a job. Without the job you will enter the unemployment stats - and they aren't pretty these days.

The Obama Administration has targeted people who make over $250K as the 'greedy Americans'. Playing on paycheck envy, this administration first promised not to raise taxes, and then (now) is raising them both directly and indirectly on the 'greedy Americans'. Higher taxes means less money to pay the mortgage and leads to more defaults - and business closures. The tax and spend habits of the leaders of the ObamaNation are focused on those Americans who pay taxes: Born proportionately on the backs of those who make more than $100K per year.

Those people who have been singled out by the Democratic Congress may be 'greedy Americans', but they are also the people who meet payroll for most of the rest of America.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Obama and Reid - Insensitivity

There are a lot of things that should pique Senator Harry Reid's conscience. The religious right has suggested that, "God should call Sen. Reid 'home'." If Harry Reid was tapped by the Grim Reaper, I doubt he'd see heaven.

Maybe Harry's soul would be left in between as heaven won't want him and hell would know he'd try to take over.

Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele has called for the resignation of Harry Reid as Senate majority leader over remarks published in a new book calling then-presidential candidate Barack Obama a "light-skinned" black man "with no Negro dialect unless he wanted to have one." If the Lott standard still applies, Reid should step down. However the Lott standard clearly does not apply to Reid or any of his friends. For example, Reid recently compared opponents of his health care reform bill, written in secret behind closed doors, to supporters of slavery. Where is the President of the United States in all this? Where is Barack Hussein Obama? Has he censured the nearly senile Reid? 

(he hasn't censured the clearly senile Joe (Slow Joe) Biden)
In remarks made to the New York Observer about his Democratic opponents for the 2008 presidential nomination, Vice President Joe Biden said: "I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy." I think that Slow Joe was trying to say that Barack Hussein Obama is a 'credit to his race'.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Two Teleprompters Now? Obama=Serious

Political Commentary: As this graphic (below) illustrates, Obama may be getting serious about terrorism...

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Vampire Beltway

I normally don't repost other people's work. In this case, Michelle Malkin's article deserved it. By the way, Michelle - YOU ROCK!

Strange Tales Of The Vampire Congress


Meet the Beltway bloodsuckers. They convene in the dead of night, when most ordinary mortals have left work and let their guard down or are lying asleep in bed. Pale-faced and insatiable, the nocturnal thieves do their nefarious business in backrooms and secret chambers.

Their primary victims? Taxpayers, the free market and deliberative democracy.

Democratic leaders have been promising the most ethical, transparent, open and engaged administration for years. Instead, they have delivered a bleak and creepy legislative environment that could double as a "Twilight" movie set.

Skulking Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid rammed the government health care takeover package through under the cover of darkness before Thanksgiving and Christmas. House Democratic leaders forbade debate on all but one amendment not authored by themselves.

The Senate Finance Committee killed a GOP amendment that would have required Demcare to be available online for 72 hours before the committee voted. Reid and his Volterra-style henchmen cut last-minute cash-for-cloture deals behind closed doors.

And now House and Senate Democratic leaders are reportedly preparing to cut dissenters out of the reconciliation process by bypassing the formal conference committee.

In Hill parlance, this legislative shortcut is called "ping-ponging." A better game analogy: dodgeball. With mounting opposition from both conservative Republicans and progressive Democrats, President Obama's water-carriers must use every trick in the book to speed the final merging and passage of the bill before the end of the month.

The hypocrisy reeks stronger than rotting garlic. In 2006, House Democrats asserted that "House-Senate conferences are a critical part of the deliberative process because they produce the final legislative product that will become the law of the land."

That same year, Reid railed on the Senate floor against informal deal-making that circumvented the conference committee process — and he attacked the use of manager's amendments to avoid public scrutiny:

"Of course, nobody can see the manager's amendment. It is composed of over 40 amendments. How could anyone vote for a piece of legislation such as that — a manager's amendment with 42 separate amendments? Now, these amendments were not put in a conference committee.

"People complain about that. But at least in a conference committee, you have people working together, sticking things in. . .. Here, you have one person making a decision as to what is going to be in the manager's amendment. There is no way to know what is in it."

But four years later, it was Reid who snuck his 383-page manager's amendment — stuffed with payoffs, special breaks and concessions on health care — into the Senate hopper on the Saturday before Christmas break. Four years later, it is Reid stifling the open, collaborative conference committee process he so fiercely championed.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Interpol and Diplomatic Immunity

Background CLICK HERE 

DISCLAIMER: I have no idea why Obama granted Interpol diplomatic immunity in the United States. I am not an apologist for Barack Hussein Obama or for his administration or for its consistently strange policies.

Interpol doesn't need diplomatic immunity.

There is a lot of confusion about what Interpol is and isn't. Interpol, whose full name is the International Criminal Police Organization – INTERPOL, is an organization facilitating international police cooperation. It was established as the International Criminal Police Commission in 1923 and adopted its telegraphic address as its common name in 1956.

In 2008, the Interpol General Secretariat employed a staff of 588 (in Lyon, France) representing 84 member countries. Its membership of 188 countries provides finance of around $59 million through annual contributions. The organization's headquarters are in Lyon, France. In the photo (below) taken inside the General Secretariat you'll me standing at right.

So why the change in status? 
I am perplexed.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

My Dog

My dog sleeps about 20 hours a day.

He has his food prepared for him.

He can eat whenever he wants, 24/7/365.

His meals are provided at no cost to him.

He visits the doctor once a year for his checkup, and again during the year if any medical needs arise.

For this He pays nothing, and nothing is required of him.

He lives in a nice neighborhood in a house that is much larger than He needs, but He is not required to do any upkeep.

If He makes a mess, someone else cleans it up.

He has his choice of luxurious places to sleep.

He receives these accommodations absolutely free.

He is living like a king, and has absolutely no expenses whatsoever.

All of his costs are picked up by others who go out and earn a living every day.

I was just thinking about all this, and suddenly it hit me like a brick in the head,

Holy S#!t, my dog is a democrat!

h/t Mark S.