Friday, February 27, 2009

Stop the Rich-Bashing

Let's stop the scary wave of resentment mounting in the rhetoric of people when discussing the wealthy. Who among us wouldn't enjoy a bit more money in the bank account? Who among us wouldn't like to have the "money can't make you happy but it does make things easier" in our favor? I know there are a lot of people in this country and in the world who have things very, very hard. But this us against them mentality is so destructive. My husband is employed by a couple of very successful and probably extremely wealthy men. Their company employs hundreds of people. They provide a product that customers need and want. Why in the world are we punishing the successful for being successful? Much of the time it appears that people are just in the right place at the right time when they come into money, but I also know a number of wealthy folks who have worked diligently at what they do, both to provide for their families and to obtain financial security. Don't let the undercurrent of hatred for the rich take you downstream! It is the wealthy who buy things, employ people, take risks, and now it looks like they are expected to shoulder the enormous burden of our government's freewheeling spending with increased taxes. It is unfair. It needs to stop.

Betcha a lot of employees are going to ask their employers to cap their salaries at $249,999. Who can blame them?

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Shame on Pork-Belly Republicans

Of the $480 billion appropriations bill just signed 40% of the 9,000 earmarks were put in by the Republicans! What are they THINKING? The goal here, conservatives, is to QUIT SPENDING and certainly not succumb to the temptation to nurse your own agenda by adding to the earmark problem. Republicans will have no leg to stand on in upcoming elections when met by an electorate which is angry about the lavish and wasteful spending of the government. What are they going to say to their constituents about their own acquiecense to this back-alley, you-rub-my-back-and-i'll-rub-yours practice? Earmarks make me think of the super small print you see (or rather, can't see) on the bottom of a credit card agreement, where in good faith you agree to their terms without fully reading the details. The details come back to bite you! Our own government should not be permitted to do these sleight of hand additions to a basic budget bill. It is wrong. Shame on the Republicans who joined in the pork orgy.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Mr. Obama is a talented speaker. I am at a loss, however, on how to reconcile the words that come out of his mouth with the actions he has taken and plans to take. He is against earmarks? He is right on the money there; the American people strongly disagree with the practice. But then it is discovered that the current $400-odd billion appropriations bill that will be signed into law probably sometime this week, has nearly nine thousand (9,000)!!! earmarks. Some of these pet projects are so brazen and clearly unnecessary, just to hear the details of them is like fingernails on a chalkboard. Where is the transparency promised by this administration? Or is this the transparency - that the people in the Obama administration will say what you want to hear then do whatever they want, because the voters have neither the voice nor the numbers in the house and senate to stop it? It's like someone giving you the middle finger salute behind their back while they say soothing words to you. I don't like the feeling.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Hey, here's some interesting stuff. A governor who wishes to forgo the "stimulus" money may be forced to take it anyway by its own state representatives! What? The stimulus money has some major tentacles attached to it, in that the states are required to enlarge their entitlement programs (welfare, unemployment) upon the receipt of the federal money. When the federal money runs out, which it will after two years (if our federal government doesn't bankrupt the country first), the state is required to continue the program on its own dime. Well, some of these governors are actually considering the dilatory effects this continuation of entitlements would create and are wisely inclined to decline the federal funds. Well, if that state is full of die-hard democrats who would really love to see the government control of people's lives enlarged, these state reps. can vote to overrule the decision of the governor! What the hell? It's like the federal government is engaging in some sort of demented extortion; a schoolyard bully demanding his way, either now or in the parking lot after school. Nice job, Obama administration, once again cornering your opposition and leaving them no reasonable option for protecting their state from burdensome tax increases and oppressive government intervention. So what's the point of having a governor? Hmmm. Imagine that G.E., big corporation, was giving its shareholders a "stimulus" option which came with some onerous requirements. Some shareholders would prefer to pass on it in favor of keeping their options open and freedom of choice. Well, part of the framework of the "stimulus" for the corporation came with a loophole that anyone who voted against it could basically be silenced and their votes overruled by the other shareholders. This is big-time extortion! Like what the mob would come up with if they put their "rules of the road" in writing! It is disgusting. Wake up people and make some noise!

Oh wait, I forgot, those of us with a voice who might want to make some noises of protestation of this insanity in our federal government are too busy trying to make a living so that the government can spend our money and raise our taxes so that we can bail out all the people who should not be homeowners! What happened to sitting down before you bought something and figuring out if you could afford it? Homes need maintenance and require insurance, property taxes to be paid, lawns to be mowed. These things factor in!

If my memory serves, the "reinvestment" stimulus package was signed by Mr. Obama just about 10 days ago. Well, this was a spending spree of magnificent proportions. $787 billion dollars, borrowed, which means interest will be owed, and lots of this money going toward totally ridiculous programs which have nothing stimulating about them. It is so interesting to me that now, 10 days after this spending-like-a-drunken-sailor event is made into law, Mr. Obama comes on the national news, upbraiding the federal government for its spending practices and declaring that his goal is to cut the federal deficit in half in the next two years. Wow, that some sleight of hand this guy has. The left hand is spending money that is not there, while the right hand is preaching of restraint and fiscal responsibility. Bit of a problem with hypocrisy there, don't ya think? Haven't heard a lot of CNN folks calling him to the carpet on it, either. Unbelievable.

My final little blurb is about Mr. Obama's "historic" economic and fiscal responsibility summit held yesterday in D.C. It appeared that he basically assembled 100 or so of his faithful kool-aid drinkers and a smattering of opponents from the republican party (just to make it appear fair). They all got together and met about a variety of subjects, then came back to a briefing room to discuss their meetings. It spiraled quickly into a worship session with Obama as the messiah and his followers blurting out their praise for his leadership and how grateful they are to be in his presence. I felt like I was watching some demented version of the Stepford Wives in government format. Are they putting some date rape drug or some other substance in the water of these federal bureaucrats? It was no surprise to me that the people espousing their unabashed praise and adulation of Mr. Obama were democrats or "community activists" who were no doubt delighted that Mr. Obama had just filled their troughs with enough cash to get them through the next few years of their lame projects. A few conservative types were allowed a brief, feeble plea for fairness in the congressional debate (remember, Nancy Pelosi quickly changed congressional rules which basically cut the voice boxes from anyone in the minority party some time back, once she became speaker of the house). Mr. Obama replied that basically the majority would prevail, and added that the republicans needed to be "constructive" in the debate process. No doubt, he is referring to the fact that only three republicans in the federal government were in favor of his "reinvestment" shenanigans and the others, standing on principles of conservatism, voted their conscience and against him. He clearly does not think that a vote against him, or those who would dare to question the motives or means of a piece of legislation, is "constructive". Let's then rewrite the meaning of the word "constructive" to mean "rollover and shut up". Okay, I get it. Anyway, the tone of this summit and its press release on the news was totally disturbing in its bias.

Done for now! Let's speak up people. Tell others what is going on. Know the facts. Let's not get depressed over it, but rather energize the argument and don't let our country fail for lack of involvement from you.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Can They Really Take Over My IRA Account?

Have you seen or heard anything about this story? What with the federal government running amok, spending money on TARPs and "Reinvestment" packages, what will they do when the money runs out, and printing more becomes unjustifyable? Well, in October 2008 Congress held hearings regarding the idea of the federal government taking over people's individual retirement accounts, "returning" them to the amount they held prior to the stock market plunge of late last year, and then depositing that money for you in your social security account. I am not making this up! see or search IRA government confiscation and you will find the lead article, featuring an economics professor Teresa Ghilarducci discussing the proposal.

Please tell me this gets your attention! This is YOUR money! The entire theme on which this proposal is based is that all the dollars really belong to the government, and it is just allowing you to use it. Or, deciding that the wealth needs to be "redistributed".

I am certain the American people would rebel about this IF THE MEDIA WOULD REPORT IT or even the idea of it. Be alert! Watch for this! We need to be ready if such a confiscation is even proposed.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

its the end of the world as we know it

okay, what a hideous day this has been for the United States! Mr. Obama has signed a bill that perpetuates an enormous load of debt for nonsense like ATV park trails, dog park, honeybee insurance, saving Nancy Pelosi's district-dwelling-salt-marsh-mouse, buying new cars for federal employees, STD prevention programs, ad nauseum. oh yeah, i guess the commerce department is in need of redecorating! is anyone out there paying attention to this? i am amazed that after the promises of a transparent White House administration we have a tax cheater for Treasury Secretary (every time Mr. Geitner speaks the stock market plunges). Mr. Richardson had some little Grand Jury issue, so he'd have to pass on a cabinet position. Oh Mr. Daschel, a $128,000 tax bill "oversight" and "honest" mistake is more than most people will make in several years! And this was only his tax bill? Mr. Obama's declaration that any potential legislation would be posted on a website for the public to read and review (and the administration would take into account the public's opinion) for five days before it is presented for a vote!!! What happened to that? Why do i not see these things reported on CNN or Headline News?

I cannot believe how fast and furious this heinous bill was passed and signed. Our economy needed "something" to be done, so spending $788 billion of money we don't have was better than nothing. NOT! The best way for our economy to recover would be to let people keep more of the money they earn! Get off the backs of small business owners! Reduce corporate income and payroll taxes. It should not cost so much money just to employ a worker. It sounds like Mr. Obama feels that the entrepreneurs of this country aren't giving their fair share of their money. It is them that will bear the brunt of this staggering burdensome deficit spending. It is the people who have some money that risk it to start new businesses! Punishing successful people will quash their interest or capability to continue assuming such risks! When was the last time a poor person offered you a job?

this weekend's newspaper in the Houston Chronicle detailed the amounts of the various "tax cuts" and "spending" outlined in the "stimulus" bill. it was interesting that none of the offensive pork and earmarked spending details were spelled out in the chart. However, upon further scrutiny, the article showed a column for "other" in many of the columns. The total amount of "other" was more than $37 BILLION dollars! wow! that is a pretty significant amount to only merit the designation of "other" spending!

can we talk about the census? in 2010 the commerce department is (was?) scheduled to conduct the once-a-decade census which determines boundaries for congressional districts, public funding for government programs, etc., based on population figures. the reason the commerce department does this is because the congress, senate and presidential administration should not be able to manipulate the data obtained in the census; the commerce department is intended to be a non-partisan, information gathering agent in the course of administering the census. Mr. Obama is making the hugest power grab imaginable here; by casually declaring that he wants his admininstration to take over the job, he and his colleagues in the democrat party can basically unilaterally and without the bothersome interference of anyone, assign new districts and increase the democrat's voting base without a whimper of objection from anyone. Foxes guarding the chickens!

the political system is never going to be the salvation of the people of any country. the United States has the best thing going. To let it slide into a socialist republic is akin to giving up on life because you suffer from the common cold. Spread the word of what is happening in Washington, D.C. If we concede without so much as a word of dissent to this unraveling of the fabric of our free market, free society, it will be an irreversible tragedy.