Tuesday, July 3, 2012

It’s easiest for the IRS to administer the health care mandate, but it’s not a tax!

Hotair ^ | 07/03/2012 | ERIKA JOHNSEN

Just remember, guys: The Internal Revenue Service might be the best-equipped entity to administer the "penalty," and the "penalty" might be assessed on your tax return, but the requirement to pay a "penalty" if you don't buy health insurance is most definitively not a tax.


Speaking on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer," Wasserman Schultz said Monday, that the law should be enforced by the federal government’s taxing arm because “it’s simply a matter of ease in administration.”
“The way we usually think of taxation, Wolf, is that taxation as the IRS administers is collected on broad swaths and large categories of individuals,” Wasserman Schultz said. “This is a penalty that will be assessed on the tax return if you choose to roll the dice and make us all pay for your being irresponsible and increase all of our health care costs.
“We’re not going to tolerate that any more in America. You have to be responsible and you have to pay a penalty if you choose not to be,” she continued.
Okay, whatever, Democrats — call it what you want. It looks like a tax, it smells like a tax, but fine, it’s just the feds penalizing you for exercising your personal freedom to not buy health insurance. But the fact remains that this “penalty” is going to funnel more of Americans’ money out of the productive private economy and into the government, and it’s going to be a huge imposition to the middle class.
In related news, Florida Gov. Rick Scott has led the charge of Republican states — so far including Iowa, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas and Wisconsin — in declining to start battening down the hatches for the optional portions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. (Heh. “Affordable.” Sorry, I still can’t say that with a straight face.) While I applauded Gov. Scott’s leadership on refusing to accept that ObamaCare is going to become a historical fact and pledging to continue to work toward its repeal, Rep. Wasserman Schultz didn’t happen to see it that way.
Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., the chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), described her state governor as “a spoiled brat” for trying to fight Obamacare even though the Supreme Court ruled the law constitutional.
“I think he’s acting like a spoiled brat,” Wasserman Schultz said of Gov. Rick Scott, R-Fla., per WOKV. “He insisted that the law was unconstitutional, and the Supreme Court has ruled. The matter should be settled.”
Yes, I do think that perhaps someone is showing just a touch of petulance here — but it isn’t Gov. Scott.

Mineral Wells City Council: American Flag is Clutter!

By Bobby Eberle 

A Texas city council has voted to ban American flags from a local cemetary. Why? Because these people want to keep the cemetary free of "clutter." That's right... according to these "leaders," the American flag is "clutter" and cannot be placed beside a tombstone. It appears common sense and respect for veterans have gone out the window.
As reported by KHOU.com in Houston, the city council in Mineral Wells, Texas voted to ban the display of flags and other items such as teddy bears from grave sites. Flags are now only allowed during the two weeks around Memorial Day and Veterans Day.
In addition, flowers can't even be left at the tombstones of loved ones unless they are in a vase. What kind of ordinance is this?

Video | News | Weather | Sports
Mon Jul 02 09:28:20 PDT 2012

Flag flap: Texas veterans upset ’Old Glory’ banned at gravesite

Veterans in one Texas town are outraged about a new ordinance that restricts when family members can place items such as American flags and flowers at the graves of their loved ones. view full article

As KHOU.com notes, it's "not clear why the city council passed the ordinance," and they "will reconsider the ban." Do you think enough people hit them on the head with the common sense hammer?
In today's society, we have to deal with so many efforts to drive out patriotism. If someone wants to display an American flag next to the grave of a loved one, that person should be allowed to do so. Let's hope this city council gets the message.
What do you think? Please leave your comments below, and then...
Contact the Mineral Wells City Council!

Burn Me

Here Are The New Taxes You're Going To Pay To Pay For Obamacare...

Business Insider ^ | July 2, 2012 | Henry Blodget

Well, Obamacare is now official, which means that a lot more people in the United States will have health insurance.

And it also means a lot more people will be paying more taxes.

(You didn't think Obamacare was free, did you?)

Here are some of the new taxes you're going to have to pay to pay for Obamacare:
A 3.8% surtax on "investment income" when your adjusted gross income is more than $200,000 ($250,000 for joint-filers). What is "investment income?" Dividends, interest, rent, capital gains, annuities, house sales, partnerships, etc. Taxes on dividends will rise from 15% to 18.8%--if Congress extends the Bush tax cuts. If Congress does not extend the Bush tax cuts, taxes on dividends will rise from 15% to a shocking 43.8%. (WSJ) A 0.9% surtax on Medicare taxes for those making $200,000 or more ($250,000 joint). You already pay Medicare tax of 1.45%, and your employer pays another 1.45% for you (unless you're self-employed, in which case you pay the whole 2.9% yourself). Next year, your Medicare bill will be 2.35%. (WSJ)
Flexible Spending Account contributions will be capped at $2,500. Currently, there is no tax-related limit on how much you can set aside pre-tax to pay for medical expenses. Next year, there will be. If you have been socking away, say, $10,000 in your FSA to pay medical bills, you'll have to cut that to $2,500. (ATR.org)
The itemized-deduction hurdle for medical expenses is going up to 10% of adjusted gross income. Right now, any medical expenses over 7.5% of AGI are deductible. Next year, that hurdle will be 10%. (ATR.org)
The penalty on non-medical withdrawals from Healthcare Savings Accounts is now 20% instead of 10%. That's twice the penalty that applies to annuities, IRAs, and other tax-free vehicles. (ATR.org)[Continued]
(Excerpt) Read more at businessinsider.com ...

The Force

Obamacare taxes to hit almost all Americans

In spite of denials by Democrats and the Obama administration millions of Americans will begin feeling the impact of new Obamacare taxes on January 1, 2013.

Elections taking place on November 6, 2012 will determine whether or not these taxes will be repealed by a new U.S. president, House of Representatives and Senate or will just keep increasing as more of Obamacare is implemented.

According to The Heritage Foundation almost every household will feel the tax impact, regardless of income. Anyone who thinks this will only touch the rich may be surprised to find that:
  • • Low income workers with average income of $24,757 will see a tax increase of $1,207.
  • Millennials with average incomes of $23,917 will see a tax increase of $1,099,

All in all Obamacare is expected to increase taxes by as much as $500 billion including those on payrolls that will be hit steadily as will health insurance premiums. In addition the tax credit for businesses that offer employees health care will be eliminated.
As tax after tax is exposed by fact checking organizations on the internet sites some Democrat politicians and their mainstream media supporters try to use twisted terminology to avoid using the word “taxes” however they cannot hide the realities of how Obamacare is going to hit the pocketbooks of the average America
According to Americans for Tax Reform:
If an employer does not offer health coverage, and at least one employee qualifies for a health tax credit, the employer must pay an additional non-deductible tax of $2000 for all full-time employees. Applies to all employers with 50 or more employees. If any employee actually receives coverage through the exchange, the penalty on the employer for that employee rises to $3000. If the employer requires a waiting period to enroll in coverage of 30-60 days, there is a $400 tax per employee ($600 if the period is 60 days or longer.)

The question is whether Obama can fool some of the people some of the time but not all of the people all of the time. How many Americans have been fooled will be determined during the 2012 election.

Scrapping ObamaCare AND the IRS: Here's Your Blueprint

Tea Party Tribune ^ | 2012-07-02 14:15:07 | Ken Crow

This is an article that you're going to want to spread far and wide! Copy the browser address, paste it in an email and send it out to everyone you know. Post it at Facebook and in every newspaper that will allow it. It's our only hope, America!

According to Cha-Cha, the information website on (supposedly) everything, the great novel Moby Dick is 864 pages long. Wikipedia claims that War & Peace is 1440 pages in hardcover form. Each of these great classic novels were written long before radio, television, I-Pads, I-Phones or the Internet. The point here being if someone wants to read one of the above, they should be prepared to sit on the porch for the better part of the summer and drink gallons of lemonade while doing so.

Former House Speaker Pelosi said it about as eloquently as she could when she informed America, ""We have to pass the [health care ] bill so that you can find out what is in it."

Nearly two years later, we now know that after 2700 pages we are the proud recipients of new government bureaucratic red-tape the likes of which we have never seen before. We are the proud owners of twenty-two new taxes, government controlled-everything regarding our health-- and now the Congress can do pretty much anything they desire, if they call it a tax. Side-note: You do realize that this will now allow the Federal Government the ability to control your hot dog and Coca-Cola intake, right? Add smoking, drinking a beer, eating a hamburger or visiting Taco Bell on your lunch hour, too. They will now be able to instruct that you must have the benefit of a mile-long walk every evening, or you pay a fine for not doing so. NO, I am not kidding, America. Look at New York City and their Mayor Bloomberg. The process has already started, with the banning of Big Gulps. In the Big Apple, you're now restricted to 16oz Cokes.
Your mission to save America is as follows: Once you've finished reading this, send it to ten friends on the first day, then they'll send to ten friends on the second day. If 100 of you do this, within one week these instructions would have made it to some ONE HUNDRED MILLION mailboxes. WE CAN ACCOMPLISH THIS!
After the Supreme Court's June 28th ruling, I contacted a fellow I know named Craig Bergman.
Craig and I have agreed on many issues in the past, but we've also had some very fiery discussions on topics we disagree on. The one thing I will have to take my hat off to Craig about, is his vast knowledge on issues such as this one. Craig's political experience goes back to the Jack Kemp campaign for President. He cut his political teeth on that campaign and has been active in Conservative causes and politics ever since. His resume for political and government knowledge can be traced to five Presidential races, six Gubernatorial races, eight U.S. Senate races, dozens of Congressional races and numerous state and local races, in nearly every state.
The bottom line is this, Craig would be the perfect person to contact if one wanted to know how to actually get rid of this monstrosity of a health-care bill. I called Craig today and began asking questions.
According to Mr. Bergman, what really has to happen is this. Currently sitting in Congress is a bill with sixty-eight coauthors. It strips the Federal Government of the ability to tax citizens individually, and turns over all individual taxing authority to the States. In this bill, the United States Congress could not set and implement income taxes any longer. In other words, it would repeal the 16th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. Craig makes the point that for the first 140 years or so, our nation had no Internal Revenue Service or Federal Income Tax. They were not imposed on America until ninety-nine years ago.
What would happen if a bill like this is implemented? You (The American Citizen) will pay much lower in taxes, for one thing. It's much easier for the good folks of Iowa to walk into the Capitol building and confront their Representative, than it is to walk into the U.S.Capitol and do so.
It would be easy for me to write an entire seven-page long essay on this topic. Here's what I want each of you across the fruited plain to do. Visit a couple of websites, listen to a couple of programs in which Craig explains (in very concise detail) what needs to happen to implement it.
America, this is our only chance to stop something that will destroy our nation. Make no mistake about it, America. THIS OBAMACARE BILL WILL DESTROY OUR NATION BEYOND RECOGNITION!
Follow these instruction carefully:
1. Listen to Craig's explanations at (www.americaswakeupcall.net)
2. Find and join a great organization that's representing you, and donate generously! We are working hard to get this done. www.restoringamericaproject.org OR www.americansforprosperity.org Both of these organizations are going to battle on your behalf on many issues like this one that are stripping you of your liberty.
3. Contact your Congressman, and tell him or her that you want them to rally support for this bill. Once there are enough votes to get it passed, you want them to bring it to the floor for a vote. Tell them that you demand your Government be given back to the people. If they do not want to do this, you will work tirelessly to defeat them in the Mid-Terms.
4. Get involved! Pass this on, keeping in mind the math from earlier in this article. Without you, the American people, nothing happens. Don't expect your neighbor to do something first! You do it, and set an example!
Together, America, we can return our country to how our Founding Fathers intended it to be. Get busy, America! Get involved, donate some money, join an organization that is involved and pray hard. It can happen, but it won't without it starting here. Remember every journey begins with just one step. This is your step!
Feel free to email me: ( kencrow@restoringamericaproject.org )
Listen to Craig Bergman live at ( www.americaswakeupcall.net )
Information on the Fair Tax: www.fairtax.com

Article shared using the Free Republish tool on Tea Party Tribune.


I knew this women she was so frigid every time she spread her legs a little light came on!

Almost Fifty Years Ago – But These Songs Still Sound Good To This Old Man

TheAgedP.com ^ | 02/07/12 | The Aged P

The big hits of 1963…. Difficult to believe that all these came out almost half a century ago (when I had just started out as a teacher) but each of them still gives me a buzz today, not just as a stroll down memory lane but because they are also still damn good songs.

(Excerpt) Read more at theagedp.com ...

A Strategy to Undo ObamaCare

Wall Street Journal ^ | July 2, 2012 | Keith Hennessey

Now that the Supreme Court has ruled ObamaCare's individual mandate constitutional, the direction of American health policy is in the hands of voters. So how do we get from here to "repeal and replace"?
Step one is electing Mitt Romney as president, along with Republican House and Senate majorities.

Without a Republican sweep, the law will remain in place.

But a President Romney does not need 60 Republican senators to repeal core elements of ObamaCare. Democrats lost their 60th senate vote in early 2010 after Scott Brown took Edward Kennedy's seat. To bypass a Senate GOP filibuster and enact portions of ObamaCare, they used a special legislative procedure called reconciliation.

Reconciliation allows a bill to pass the Senate in a limited time period, with limited amendments, and with only 51 votes; filibusters are not permitted. In 2010, Democrats split their health-policy changes into two bills, one of which they enacted through this fast-track process. In 2013, a Republican majority could use the same reconciliation process to repeal those changes.

(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...

Has Homosexuality Become the New Normal?

The Christian Diarist ^ | July 3, 2012 | JP

One needn’t have had “gaydar” to know that Anderson Cooper was homosexual. That’s why the significance of the CNN anchor’s declaration yesterday – “I’m gay always have been, always will be” – is not that he made it, but that he felt so empowered to do so.
In an email to Andrew Sullivan, a fellow homosexual who authors a blog for the Daily Beast, Cooper explained that he was reminded recently “that while as a society we are moving toward greater inclusion and equality for all people, the tide of history only advances when people make themselves fully visible.”
That’s the gay strategy – to “make themselves fully visible.” As Sullivan wrote on his blog, “The visibility of gay people is one of the core means for our equality.”
That’s why gay rights activists so often state that every one of us knows someone or another who is gay.
The implication is that homosexuals constitute a sizable minority; that they deserve to be full integrated into every area of society, from the military to the Boy Scouts; that they deserve to be accorded the very same rights as heterosexuals, from marriage to adoption of children.
But homosexuals are not nearly as sizable a minority as the unsuspecting American public has been misled to believe.
Sure, most of us know someone or another who is gay. But most of us also know someone or another who is Asian.
Asians constitute a mere 5 percent of the U.S. population, which most of us would not consider sizeable. And the homosexual population is not even half that of the Asian population.
That’s not the disinformation of one of the “pastors calling for the death of gay people,” as Sullivan decried, but the fact-based conclusion of Garance Franke-Ruta, a senior editor at The Atlantic magazine.
In an article published this past spring, Franke-Ruta, who is no conservative, no evangelical Christian, pointed to an April 2011 study by the Williams Institute, a gay and lesbian think tank at UCLA, which calculated that only 1.7 percent of Americans between 18 and 44 are homosexual.
Given that data, wrote Franke-Ruta, the size of the gay population has been “massively overestimated” by members of the American public. She points to a Gallup poll last year in which those surveyed figured that gays and lesbians made up more than 25 percent of theU.S.population.
That so many Americans mistakenly believe that the homosexual population is 15 times larger than it actually is shows how successful gay rights activists have been in portraying their constituency as a sizable minority.
And they have managed to do so because of their prominence in such highly visible professions as media, entertainment and politics.
Indeed, Cooper’s acknowledgement yesterday that he is gay “and proud” was preceded several months ago by a similar announcement by fellow CNN anchor Don Lemon. And it will surprise hardly anyone when and if a former CNN anchor, currently working for a rival network, follows the lead of Lemon and Cooper.
Meanwhile, a recent issue of Entertainment Weekly featured a cover story on “The New Art of Coming Out.” It celebrates “the new casual methods celebrities are using to reveal their sexuality publicly for the first time.”
That includes such Hollywood gays as Jim Parsons, a cast member on CBS’ “The Big Bang Theory,” Zachary Quinto, who appeared on NBC’s “Heroes,” before moving on to such movies as Star Trek, Matt Bomer, star of USA Network’s “White Collar,” Jesse Tyler, of ABC’s “Modern Family” and Jane Lynch, of FOX’s “Glee.”
Then there’s the political world, where homosexuality is no longer the liability with voters it once was. Indeed, the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund, which makes campaign contributions to homosexual candidates throughout the country, says there are more than 1,000 open gay elected officials serving at some level or another in government.
And the gay community has a very special relationship with the Obama administration, which, according to the Victory Fund, has appointed more than 250 gays, lesbians, bi-sexuals, and transgenders to full-time and advisor positions with the executive branch, “more than all know LGBT appointments of other presidential administrations combined.”
The success of homosexuals in infiltrating the media, Hollywood and politics explains why so many Americans have been duped into believing that every fourth person is gay or lesbian or (other).
It also explains how the tiny minority has managed to advance its ungodly agenda, over the objection of the majority of Americans who continue to believe that homosexuality is a sin.

72 year old Man Sinks Hole-In-One, Then Bowls 300 Game!

indychannel ^ | 7 3 12

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. -- What are the odds of sinking a hole-in-one in golf and bowling a 300 game, in a span of two days, at the age of 72? According to several published sources, the odds of an average golfer making an ace is about 12,000 to 1, while the odds of an adult male bowling a perfect game is about 11,500 to 1.

What with doing both, the time constraint and age factor in the mix, those odds should be much, much higher. Astronomical?

Whatever the odds, Terre Haute resident Sherm "Big Daddy" Wilkins, as he is affectionately known, defied those odds by accomplishing both feats recently.

Whatever the odds, Terre Haute resident Sherm "Big Daddy" Wilkins, as he is affectionately known, defied those odds by accomplishing both feats recently.

On Father's Day, Wilkins recorded his first-ever hole-in-one using an 8-iron on the 105-yard No. 7 hole at Mark's Par Three. The very next night, he rolled the fifth 300 game in his lengthy bowling career during league play at Vigo Bowl...

(Excerpt) Read more at theindychannel.com ...

DNC Wasserman Schultz tells you failure to comply with Obamacare will no longer be tolerated!

Here's the CNN clip:
From her mouth: "It's not a tax".
The Internal Revenue Service would be the “easiest enforcer” of penalties against those who refuse to comply for those who fail to not pay the tax that isn't.
“This is a penalty that will be assessed on the tax return if you choose to roll the dice and make us all pay for your being irresponsible and increase all of our health care costs...“We’re not going to tolerate that any more in America. You have to be responsible and you have to pay a penalty if you choose not to be..."
(Excerpt) Read more at cnnpressroom.blogs.cnn.com ...

House to prohibit IRS from implementing healthcare law!

The Hill ^ | 7/02/12 | Pete Kasperowicz

House to prohibit IRS from implementing healthcare law

The House as early as next week will pass legislation prohibiting the IRS from receiving any money from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to implement the 2010 healthcare reform law.

Passage of the financial services spending bill is especially timely in light of last week's Supreme Court ruling that penalties the government can impose under the law against people who refuse to buy health insurance can be seen as a tax, because it is enforced like a tax.

That finding allowed the individual mandate to stand, and Republicans have already started reorienting their attacks against the law based on the knowledge that it only remains in place because it is an allowable tax.

The bill would have to get through the Senate and be signed by President Obama to become law.

The House will take up the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Act sometime in July, and possibly next week when it returns from the July 4 recess. (The rule governing debate on the bill was already approved last week.) While the Obama administration requested another $1 billion so the IRS can implement the healthcare law, the bill, H.R. 6020, does not give any new money to the IRS.

Additionally, it "prohibits the IRS from receiving transfers from the Department of Health and Human Services to implement the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act," according to report language accompanying the bill from the House Appropriations Committee.

The report notes that in 2010, HHS allocated $20 million to the IRS for enforcing the healthcare law "without the Committee's knowledge." It also notes that the IRS received $168 million from HHS to implement the law in 2011, and plans to get another $322 million from HHS in 2012.

"The Committee prohibits further such transfers during fiscal year 2013 in section 106 of this Act," the report states.

The bill would spend a total of $21.5 billion on the IRS, Treasury Department and other related agencies, about 1.7 percent less than the current funding level. The bill increases funding in some areas, such as Small Business Administration business and disaster loans, public safety and education in Washington D.C., and the Treasury Department's anti-terrorism financing programs.

To make up for these increases, the bill makes cuts in several areas, including the executive office of the president.

"The committee is disappointed that the administration's request did not propose additional reductions for the EOP salaries and expenses accounts," the bill report says. "The committee believes that the chief executive of any organization experiencing a fiscal crisis should share in the funding sacrifice along with the rest of the organization.

"Therefore, the committee has reduced the salaries and expenses appropriation for each organization under this heading," it adds.

Specifically, the bill would fund salaries in the executive office of the president at $650 million, down $9 million from the current level. White House salaries and expenses would be cut $2.8 million, and funding for costs related to keeping up the White House would be cut $671,000.

Other executive branch agencies would receive token cuts as well, while the Office of Management and Budget would see funding drop nearly $9 million, to $80.5 million.

The bill would also take a swing at the General Services Administration (GSA), which faced harsh criticism this year for a lavish, 2010 conference in which more than $800,000 was spent. Under the bill, the GSA would face more oversight related to its travel budget, and would be banned from holding conferences that don't comply with relevant laws and regulations.

The GSA would also have to submit quarterly spending reports to Congress, and face restrictions in monetary awards it gives to employees.

ObamaCare Suppositories

Rasmussen: Conservative Anger Against Obamacare Hitting 'Stratospheric Levels'

Newsmax ^ | 7/2/12 | Paul Scicchitano and Kathleen Walter

Conservative interest in the presidential election hit “stratospheric levels” following last week’s Supreme Court ruling upholding Obamacare, noted pollster and author Scott Rasmussen tells Newsmax.TV.

“All that did was energize conservatives,” declared Rasmussen in an exclusive interview on Monday. “The conservative interest in the election was already much higher than that of moderates and liberals. It went up to really stratospheric levels right after the ruling. We don’t know if that will continue or if it’s just a temporary response to the news cycle.”

(Excerpt) Read more at newsmax.com ...

New Evidence About To Surface On Obama Birth Certificate Fraud!

"There are allegedly several stamps bearing Registrar Alvin Onaka’s name 'floating around' inside the Hawaii Department of Health." That's the shocking revelation leaked to WorldNetDaily from Mike Zullo, the lead investigator for Sheriff Joe Arpaio's Cold Case Posse. For those who are late to this controversy, Alvin Onaka is the Registrar of Vital Statistics for the State of Hawaii, and the stamp bearing his name is the one that appears on the alleged birth certificate that Barack Obama released to the public last year.

From what we can determine, the leak from Zullo is likely a teaser... a mere morsel to whet our appetites. Obviously, the fact that the registrar's office maintains multiple stamps for Mr. Onaka is not damning.
What will more than likely be revealed, in time, is what Zullo means when he uses the term "floating around." We don't want to engage in speculation, but it appears to at least be certain that Zullo is implying that the Cold Case Posse has relevant evidence that would indicate that registrar stamps bearing Onaka’s name are in the possession of people (or could have been in the possession of people) who should not have them; and moreover, that the Cold Case Posse has a valid reason to believe that someone in possession of one of these stamps that was "floating around" may have used it forge the birth certificate that Obama released to the public in April of 2011.

Such an allegation, if substantive, would add even more credibility to the Cold Case Posse's contention that the birth certificate Obama released to the public is a "computer-generated forgery." For now, we can only wait for Zullo to present his facts on July 17th to get the rest of the story
WorldNetDaily.com reports:
(WND.com) Among the details leaked early by Cold Case Posse lead investigator Mike Zullo: There are allegedly several stamps bearing Registrar Alvin Onaka’s name “floating around” inside the Hawaii Department of Health.

“I can’t disclose to you what we’ve discovered, but it’s going to be a shocking revelation at our press conference,” Zullo told Tea Party Power Hour host Mark Gillar in a telephone interview from Hawaii.

Sheriff Joe Arpaio and his Cold Case Posse investigating Barack Obama’s presidential eligibility have been promising more major revelations since their March 1 press conference, and now another event has been scheduled to unveil new information.

Arpaio told WND a press conference will be held July 17 at 2:30 p.m. local time at the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office in Phoenix, Ariz. WND will once again provide live Web streaming of the event.

The evidence will include information gathered in the posse’s recent investigative trip to Hawaii as well as an update on the ongoing investigation.
Read The Rest Of The Story

Rumsfeld Speaks Former Defense Secretary: American weakness is dangerous

freebeacon.com ^ | July 2 2012

Former Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, in a rare public speech, warned that American military and financial weakness is creating a more dangerous and unstable world.

Rumsfeld also said the U.S. government, both Congress and the executive branch, is dysfunctional and ill-suited for the information age. He called for creating a blue-ribbon commission to modernize the administrative functions of government agencies and institutions in both branches.
The former defense secretary during the George W. Bush administration said he was asked recently what keeps him awake at night.
“What I worry about most today is American weakness,” Rumsfeld told a conference of congressional staff members and former government officials hosted by the Defense Forum Foundation on Capitol Hill.
“The signal of weakness is a dangerous one,” he said.
Rumsfeld said that throughout his 80-year life, “the world has been a safer place because of the United States of America.”
Rumsfeld said American weakness can provoke potential adversaries into conflict and urged keeping the United States strong both financially and militarily, while maintaining robust diplomatic and intelligence capabilities.
Foreign perceptions of the United States as strong and engaged in world affairs and available to help its allies have a significant deterrent effect on would-be aggressors, he said.
(Excerpt) Read more at freebeacon.com ...

Nice Try: Obama Released Restrictive New Energy Plan Under Cover of SCOTUS, Holder Contempt

Townhall.com ^ | July 2, 2012 | Kate Hicks

File this one under While You Were Out: the Obama Administration unveiled its new five-year energy plan on Thursday, when the rest of us were conveniently preoccupied with SCOTUS and the Holder contempt vote. Real smooth.
Of course, it's pretty clear why they wanted this to fly under the radar: as Hot Air's Erika Johnsen noted on Saturday, the plan is just not good. She points out that it opens up a miniscule percentage of our offshore resources, but not nearly enough to make a dent in our energy use, and what's more, by constraining the number of jobs that this could produce, it does nothing to help the economy. Some details:
U.S. oil companies will be allowed to drill in more areas of the Gulf of Mexico but won only limited access to the Arctic under the final version of the Obama Administration's five year drilling plan that was slammed by industry and some environmentalists.
The 2012-2017 plan calls for three potential lease sales in areas offshore Alaska but the auctions would not be held until the final years of the plan because of environmental concerns about operating in the Arctic.
"Today, the Obama Administration has announced a bleak future for American energy production by keeping 85 percent of America's offshore areas under lock and key and refusing to open any new areas to drilling," said Doc Hastings, Republican chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee.
The plan calls for 15 potential lease sales in six offshore areas, including in the Western and Central Gulf of Mexico, and the portion of the Eastern Gulf not currently under Congressional moratorium.
Indeed, the plan is so bad that it's been panned by everyone, from the GOP to hard-left environmentalists (who, ironically, think it's too permissive) -- but interestingly, it's produced a fair amount of unity in the Virginian Congressional delegation. Sen. Jim Webb, a Democrat, has joined with his Commonwealth brethren to oppose the president's restrictive plan:
Republicans pounced on President Obama on Thursday afternoon for his administration’s failure to include Virginia in the final five-year plan for offshore oil and gas drilling.
But it wasn’t just Republicans complaining. Sen. Jim Webb (D) joined the bipartisan dissent.
“I regret that the administration failed to include Virginia in its proposed final five-year lease plan,” Webb said. “Energy exploration . . . would boost domestic energy production, while benefiting the commonwealth’s economy.”
The plan announced Thursday postpones drilling off Virginia’s coast until at least 2017.
Obama had announced that Virginia would become one of the first East Coast states to drill offshore. But the administration postponed lease sales after the spill and never included Virginia in subsequent plans.
The last study of the Atlantic Ocean by the federal government, conducted two decades ago, estimates that at least 130 million barrels of oil and at least 1.14 trillion cubic feet of natural gas could be off Virginia’s coast. That’s equal to the amount of oil used in six days and the amount of gas used in less than a month in the United States.
Errr, so is this what an "all of the above" energy plan looks like?
Here's a fun fact, though: the government has restricted Virginia's right to drill offshore because they don't know for certain that there's oil to be found...and they don't know that there's oil to be found because there are federal restrictions on doing the necessary research. From the same story:
Many experts think tests in similar geographic areas in other parts of the world and limited seismic work off Virginia’s coast indicate that there is far more oil and natural gas offshore, although no one has been able to show accurately what is there because of federal restrictions.
Indeed, the fact that the Obama administration released the plan on one of the busiest news days in recent history is all the more reason to take a look at it now. It's yet another reminder of the damage four more years could do, both to energy policy and job growth.

"Top 10 Obama Failed Promises"

Townhall.com ^ | July 2, 2012 | Daniel Doherty

The Republican National Committee -- once again -- has released an important and startling infographic detailing the president’s myriad failures:
This list is far from exhaustive, since the president has broken so many campaign promises over the last three and a half years, it’s almost impossible to keep track at this point. President Obama’s failure to close the prison at Guantanamo Bay, for example, could certainly make the cut. Let’s remember, too, after then-Senator Obama was elected President of the United States (and even before, I guess) he was deeply committed to unifying the nation. Since that time, however, he has increasingly relied upon unfair – and factually inaccurate – attack ads in order to distract voters from his own failings and divide Americans. And while it's obvious the president will say or do just about anything to win reelection, I think this chart is particularly devastating precisely because it reminds us the "Hope and Change" candidate -- whom we swept into office in 2008 -- has consistently and repeatedly failed to live up to his own lofty standards.




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It's A Tax!

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Bull Shit

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Broccoli Mandate

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Do as I Say

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Light The Fuse

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Go Forth

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Grave Marker

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Bush's fault

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Spaying & Neutering

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Wages drop, only 5th time in 33 years!

Washington Examiner ^ | July 2, 2012 | Paul Bedard

Unemployment ebbs and flows, but one measure of the nation's economic health, average weekly wages, rarely dips.

Until now. In the latest demonstration of the struggling economy that threatens President Obama's reelection, average weekly wages fell in 2011, one of only five declines since the category was created in 1978 by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
In a just-released review of employment in the nation's largest 322 counties, BLS found that weekly wages dropped over the year by 1.7 percent to $955 in the fourth quarter of 2011 from a high of $971 in the fourth quarter of 2010.
That means the $50,000-a-year mark, busted in the fourth quarter of 2010, has dropped back to an average yearly salary of $49,660. And the wage depression was widespread: 282 major counties suffered wage declines; just 36 saw increases.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonexaminer.com ...

As Obama takes court victory lap, U.S. unemployed still left in line!

IBD Editorials ^ | July 2, 2012 | ED CARSON

President Obama wasted little time giving his perspective on the Supreme Court's decision to uphold his sweeping health care law.

"This is a good day for millions of Americans who can continue to benefit from the protections and economic security provided by the Affordable Care Act," Obama said in an emailed statement Thursday, a few hours after the ruling.

But for millions of Americans, it was just another bad day without the economic security of a job. The unemployment rate has held above 8% for 40 straight months. It ticked up to 8.2% in May, and would actually be around 11% if labor force participation wasn't at record lows.

A recent Gallup survey found that 31% of Americans say the economy is their top concern. Another 25% cite unemployment. And health care? Just 6% say it's their No. 1 issue.

So the court ruling has thrown ObamaCare into the middle of a tight presidential race. It has motivated the GOP and Democrat bases, and will no doubt continue to provide fodder for cable news, talk radio and Twitter. But ObamaCare in all likelihood will not be the main issue of the election. Swing voters are far more concerned about jobs and the economy. And there's little to celebrate on that front.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.investors.com ...

Obama, SCOTUS, Taxes and Your Freedoms

Townhall.com ^ | July 3, 2012 | Chuck Norris

Last Thursday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to uphold Obamacare's individual mandate (indictment) to collect more taxes from you and me. President Barack Obama's taxation shell game, which flies in the face of the freedoms we celebrate this week, is just one more reason his presidency and Obamacare need to be overturned this November.
Chief Justice John Roberts wasn't kidding when he offered the commentary about the court's ruling: "It is not our job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices." Obamacare is taxation unleashed!
Despite the fact that in 2009, Obama repeatedly denied to ABC News correspondent George Stephanopoulos that Obamacare's individual mandate was equated with increased taxes, the Supreme Court defined the legislation as just that -- more taxation.
When Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., was asked by a reporter whether the financial penalty for not complying with Obamacare's individual mandate is, in fact, a tax, she retorted: "Call it what you will. ... This is a very good thing for the American people."
Pelosi, who helped Obama ramrod the legislation, and Obama were frolicking like two kids in a candy store when they learned about the hallmark SCOTUS decision. But I doubt that middle-class taxpayers will be so ecstatic when they are footing the bill every year for another socialized medicine program.
On Thursday, CNN even confessed: "In 2014, the penalty (for not having medical insurance) will be no more than $285 per family or 1 percent of income, whichever is greater. In 2015, the cap rises to $975 or 2 percent of income. And by 2016, the penalty would be up to $2,085 per family or 2.5 percent of income, whichever is greater."
Bloomberg reported: "Some of the largest levies and fees in the 2010 law take effect in 2013. In all, the law is projected to raise an estimated $813 billion in revenue over 10 years to help pay for the expansion of insurance coverage, according to the Congressional Budget Office. That figure includes penalties under the individual mandate, which the court ruled is constitutional under Congress' taxing power."
The fact is that behind closed doors with the Supreme Court justices and out of view of the public, the legal teams from the Obama administration pitched Obamacare as a tax. Obama and his legal eagles lied to the public to get the legislation passed on Capitol Hill and then described it as a tax to pass it before SCOTUS. They knew that the court knows that the Constitution gives Congress the power to tax in order to carry out its duties, and that was their ticket to manipulate their way to victory.
On March 26, the first day of Obamacare arguments before the Supreme Court, Fox News reported that a top Obama lawyer was chided by the justices for calling the fine for not purchasing insurance both a "penalty" and a "tax."
Even U.S. Solicitor General Donald Verrilli repeatedly used the phrase "tax penalty" to describe noncompliance with the individual mandate. Then Justice Samuel Alito rebuffed, "General Verrilli, today you are arguing that the penalty is not a tax. Tomorrow you are going to be back, and you will be arguing that the penalty is a tax."
Verrilli answered Justice Elena Kagan's question of whether noncompliance with the individual mandate would result in breaking the law by saying that if people "pay the tax, then they are in compliance with the law." That reference caught the attention of Justice Stephen Breyer, who interjected, "Why do you keep saying tax?"
To require people to pay a penalty for not buying health insurance is a tax. And I vehemently disagree with Pelosi that Obamacare's new taxes are "a very good thing for the American people" -- in or out of a recession -- simply because more government regulations and taxation restrict our freedoms and pocketbooks.
The actions of Obama's federal government are diametrically opposed to those of America's Framers, who adopted the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution. Thomas Jefferson, who penned the original draft of the Declaration of Independence, wrote roughly 40 years later, in 1816, to Samuel Kercheval:
"We must make our election between economy and liberty, or profusion and servitude. If we run into such debts as that we must be taxed in our meat and in our drink, in our necessaries and our comforts, in our labors and our amusements, for our callings and our creeds, as the people of England are, our people, like them, must come to labor sixteen hours in the twenty-four, give the earnings of fifteen of these to the government for their debts and daily expenses, and the sixteenth being insufficient to afford us bread, we must live, as they now do, on oatmeal and potatoes; have no time to think, no means of calling the mismanagers to account; but be glad to obtain subsistence by hiring ourselves to rivet their chains on the necks of our fellow-sufferers."
Does that not describe Obama's fundamental transformation of America to a T?
Happy birthday, America! We still are celebrating and fighting for your founding principles and freedoms!
Another great summer patriotic gathering is the Patriot Academy, which is a six-day leadership and political training camp for students -- from age 16 -- and adults, too. Patriot Academy is held each summer in Austin, Texas, and the 2012 session -- its 10th anniversary -- will be held from July 30 to Aug. 4. Patriot Academy is hosted and sponsored by my friends Rick Green and David Barton from WallBuilders and also is taught by other insightful, inspirational leaders from around the country. Space is limited to only 100 students and 100 adults for the new adult track. For more information or to register today, go to http://www.patriotacademy.com.

So, a Socialist, a Populist and an Opportunist Walk into the Country...

Townhall.com ^ | July 3, 2012 | John Ransom

It is an axiom in the insurance business that insurance is not bought but sold. In 1935 Franklin Roosevelt sold Congress and Congress sold the U. S. the Social Security Act, the biggest, most comprehensive, most expensive mass insurance policy ever written. Since then its purchasers, the nation's taxpayers, have had occasion to read their policy carefully and, if they have detected no outright jokers, their reaction has been such that practically every politician in the U. S. from Franklin Roosevelt down has put revision of Social Security at the top of his must list.- Pie from the Sky Time Magazine, Feb. 13, 1939

“It takes a great deal of history to produce a little literature,” said American-born writer Henry James. While generally James has been proved correct, in the case of Social Security, the literature, at least by volume, has swamped the history.
One of the earliest pieces of literature that contributes to the history of Social Security is Time Magazine’s Pie from The Sky, an account of a House Committee hearing called to deal with “reforming” Social Security. The hearing was held four years after passage of the Act and before even a single check was written to old age beneficiaries. The Time article is stunning not because it gives us a quaint, sun-dappled and leaded window into the Norman Rockwell past, but because it provided a pinpoint, spotlight prediction of the acrimonious future of a failed federal program.
It predicted, amongst other things, that by 1980 the “the bond interest” on Social Security “will in turn have to be met by the Treasury, through other taxes.” That is, that the insurance “scheme” was really just a Ponzi scheme that would collapse in time if other taxes to fund it weren’t raised in the future. In fact, the prediction was off by just three years. The solvency of the program was addressed in landmark legislation pushed through by President Ronald Reagan and Speaker Tip O’Neil in 1983. That legislation though only amounted to a twenty-year truce in the Social Security war. The truce ended at the turn of this century.
The Time article also said that the federal government would borrow the money accumulated from the Social Security “reserve” to finance deficit spending and ultimately the public would have to pay the bill:
[L]ast week came a fresh round of ammunition from Liberal Economist John T. Flynn. Writing in Harper's on "The Social Security 'Reserve' Swindle," plain-talking Mr. Flynn declared:
"Obviously the government cannot pay adequate pensions if it insists on 'borrowing' most of the old age taxes and spending them to support the government. The whole thing is a disguised tax levied upon the lowest income groups under the pretense of old age pension premiums. No government would dare support itself out of a payroll tax if it honestly proclaimed its purpose.”
Time wrote that already, in 1939, the president and Congress were considering a fifty-percent increase in Social Security taxes to finance expanded benefits, even as qualified beneficiaries doubted that they’d live to see any benefit from the program. “But for old folks,” wrote Time, “Social Security, which will not begin paying monthly old-age insurance benefits for those over 65 until 1942, is still pie in the sky.”
So how is it that such flawed legislation-legislation that was bound to fail eventually- became the hallmark legislation of the New Deal? Well, this is where history outruns literature, while supplying literature with some of its most enduring, odious and naïve characters of the American political archetype.
And it started with politico-economic theories that are museum pieces.
As curious as it may sound today, both Communism and Fascism were considered “progressive” movements in the 1930s. While the rest of Europe and America were still suffering from the effects of the Great Depression, Adolf Hitler in Germany was apparently driving unemployment down with massive deficit spending. Included in his economic program was expanded old-age pensions, which had been first introduced in Germany in 1889 by Bismarck. In the Soviet Union, Stalin was providing cradle-to-grave economic programs. Western intellectuals, such as Harold Laski, talked up Stalinist Communism as a legitimate social order of the future while decrying the failures of the democracies’ ability to provide social and economic security under capitalism.
Into the intellectual and economic miasma of the Great Depression in the US stepped three important figures: writer Upton Sinclair; politician Huey Long; and activist Francis Townsend.
Townsend was a well-intentioned physician from South Dakota, an Army medical corps veteran of the First World War. He championed old-age pensions during the Great Depression as a way of allowing older people to retire so younger people could have jobs. The pension money that the retired would spend would increase consumer spending to energize the economy. Townsend proposed a scheme, supported by a national sales tax, whereby people “over the age sixty would receive two-hundred dollars a month on the condition that they spend the entire amount each month and retire if still employed,” writes Richard Polenberg in The era of Franklin D. Roosevelt.
Contemporary pictures of Dr. Townsend show a bespectacled, rectangle face lined with Midwestern character, a man wholly comfortable in the spotlight, as if he was just chatting with plain folks. His sharp jaw line, at almost 90 degrees, framed a smile that was hearty, with generous crease-like dimples added as an exclamation point. He had a sort of long nose that ended in a bulb and drew attention to his lank frame. He was always dressed with the natty suit and tie, like daughter Margret said of Harry Truman, as if he’d just stepped out of a band box.
In a social outpouring embedded in revivalist American tradition, Townsend’s “revolving pension” idea became a grassroots movement with local chapters of Townsend clubs springing up all over the country. “Millions of elderly Americans,” says Polenburg, “joined Townsend clubs and helped crystallize popular sentiment in favor of old-age pensions.”
By the end of 1934 there were over 5000 Townsend clubs nationwide with 2 million members, says T.H. Watkins in The hungry years: a narrative history of the Great Depression in America. Like all American revivals, it was more than a cause or a movement: It was a religion. Townsend was largely ignored by the Roosevelt White House and that rankled the revivalists.
A figure of a different sort, Senator Huey Long, former Governor from Louisiana, painted a different picture across Roosevelt’s vision. It was a picture that Roosevelt couldn’t afford to ignore. Long, known as the Kingfisher in Louisiana politics, wanted to replace Roosevelt in the White House. He planned on doing it by out-New Dealing Roosevelt.
Long attacked Roosevelt’s New Deal policies as too weak. Instead, Long proposed a radical system of wealth redistribution called Share Our Wealth that would impose Draconian taxes on millionaires and corporations and redistribute the wealth to the poor and working classes. But as Stephen W. Baskerville explained in Nothing else to fear: new perspectives on America in the thirties, there were major flaws in Long’s proposals. “There were simply not enough millionaires and too many poor families for the benefits” that Long promised, says Baskerville. Also, Long promised that such a straightforward plan wouldn’t require a huge federal agency to administer. But as Baskerville notes: “Long himself admitted on other occasions that a giant federal ‘Share Our Wealth’ corporation would have to supervise and administer wealth redistribution.”
The appeal of Long’s scheme to the poor at the height of the Depression, along with the Kingfisher’s unalloyed use of the powers of corruption, deceit and political bribery scared Roosevelt enough that he called Long “one of the two most dangerous men in America. (The other was Gen. Douglas McArthur.),” says the Long Legacy Project.
Then in 1934, radical socialist writer, Upton Sinclair, who penned The Jungle, an expose of the meat-packing business, ran unsuccessfully for Governor in California. Sinclair had made previous runs for public office as a socialist. As Sinclair wrote in his autobiographical work I, candidate for governor: and how I got licked: “Twice I ran for Governor, and once for United States Senator, always on the Socialist ticket, and the highest vote I ever polled was sixty thousand out of an electorate of a couple million.”
But running for Governor as a Democrat in 1934 Sinclair garnered almost 900,000 votes running under a socialist scheme called End Poverty In California (EPIC). EPIC proposed “an ad valorem tax on property assessed above $100,000, which means about $250,000 of actual value. This tax will fall almost entirely upon our great corporations and utilities,” wrote Sinclair, echoing political themes still in vogue today. The money raised would be put into idle factories and land as a kind of “cooperative”- better word might be soviet. The produce could then be used by workers to barter for goods and services. In theory, it would put the unemployed back to work in California and jumpstart the economy.
For Sinclair, the lesson of his defeat was obvious. As R. Baird Shuman wrote in Great American Writers: Twentieth Century “Sinclair’s 1934 campaign for Governor was his best showing in a political race. He believed that running as a Democrat instead of a socialist increased public support for him.” In 1951 Sinclair wrote: “The American People will take Socialism, but they won’t take the label.”
The combination of Sinclair’s gubernatorial showing, Long’s political ambitions and the outpouring of support for the Townsend plan convinced Roosevelt that he needed to introduce a series of social programs aimed at capturing the country’s lurch to the left. Roosevelt understood that, just as Long found out, there weren’t enough millionaires or thousand-aires to make a social security program financially viable. But to ignore the demand for a social security program would have made a Roosevelt reelection unviable. So Roosevelt took the plunge.
The program, as Time has noted, was subject to both flawed demographics and the temptation by politicians to use the program to payoff the electorate. Consequently, the social security program was always broke from the very beginning. It was broke by the utopian, socialist ideas that Time Magazine called Pie from the Sky.
The country has never yet been able to quite wipe that pie off its face either.
As The Nation wrote wistfully in October, 2010 “Sinclair lost in November, but the inspiring success of his mass movement—among other things, it basically created the liberal wing of [California] Democratic Party, which also endures to this day—and its powerful influence on a wavering new president deserves close study.”
It does indeed.
The country has studied it and come to a conclusion at odds with the political objectives of Townsend, Sinclair and Long, while forming a revivalist movement for a new generation, which in most happy circumstances will begin to right America’s Socialist lurch to the left.
Because today the heirs to America’s mass movement history aren’t the Jerry Browns, the Howard Deans, the Bill Clintons or the Barack Obamas. They are the Tea Party voters who can do three things that socialists never could quite manage in this country:
They can add, subtract and win elections.