If you support our national security issues, you may love and appreciate the United States of America, our Constitution with its’ freedoms, and our American flag.
If you support and practice our fiscal issues, you may value worldly possessions.
If you support and value our social issues, you may love Judeo-Christian values.
If you support and practice all these values, that is all good; an insignia of “Wisdom” . - Oscar Y. Harward
National Debt Clock-Click Here-Real Time
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Why do this majority Liberal Democrats insist on providing a taxpayers’ funded Health Care system to illegal immigrants, when the facts support the issue that illegal immigrants are stealing Americans’ identifications by illegal fraud using others’ Social Security card, a Driver Operator License, and/or any other fraudulent documents as official? Why reward illegal immigrants after their thefts from American taxpayers? Americans overwhelmingly support legal immigration, but Americans overwhelmingly say NO to illegal immigration.
There are needs for changes in our Health Care system. Please, let us start with tort reform. Americans overwhelmingly support tort reform. Why does President Obama and the majority Liberal Democrats on Capitol Hill reject permitting tort reform legislation? In each and every state which has approved tort reform, Health Care cost has been reduced. Why does President Obama, and the Liberal Democrats on Capitol Hill, fail to support tort reform?
Americans, and specifically the taxpayers, are seeking answers to these "Why" questions. Are you Mr. President, and the majority Democrats on Capitol Hill, listening? Are any of you better than any of us? Humble yourselves! Do what is more representative for the people. Do what is right.
God Bless America!
Promoting "God's Holy Values and American Freedoms"!
Flap your jaws…with gum, that is. And make it peppermint. Studies have found that chewing peppermint gum stimulates the same part of the brain that wakes you up in the morning. -- Susannah Seton
Setting the Standard as a Leader
Some people choose a leadership role or create one when they start a company. Some are asked to supervise, while others are placed in charge with little choice in the decision. Some are just natural leaders who influence others – even though they have no official title. No matter how you find yourself in this position of power, you are a leader of people. You influence others. And with influence comes the responsibility to do what’s best for the organization and the people you lead. Others look to you to set the standard. They rightfully assume that your behavior is the example they should follow … that what you pay attention to is what they should focus on as well.
Here are a few things that you can and should do to set the proper tone (and standards) for your work group:
Avoid skepticism – keep an optimistic outlook.
Don’t pass the buck – take responsibility for ALL aspects of your job and leadership role.
Own your mistakes – admit to them, fix them, and learn from them.
Follow the rules – know your organization’s guidelines and the law … and follow them to the letter.
Be credible – honor promises, commitments, and confidentiality.
Celebrate successes – do right by those who DO RIGHT.
Listen – always make an effort to hear and understand what others have to say.
Now comes the big question to ponder: If we polled all of the members of your work group, would they say that the behaviors listed above are things they’re learning from YOU?
"Daily Devotions" (KJV and/or NLT)
"'What is truth?' Pilate asked." (John 18:38)
If you were asked to describe absolute truth, what would you say? By what standard can we measure truth to determine if it is truth?
No matter which way you approach an absolutely true statement, it remains unassailably true. When we say that our God is absolutely truthful, we mean above everything else that He is internally consistent in His character and being.
But not every true statement qualifies as absolute truth. For example, if you said, "Today, the interest rate for home mortgages is at 6.0 percent," that could be true for someone living in America. But for someone living in Brazil, the interest rate might be 50-plus percent.
On the other hand, if you say, "Adultery is always wrong," you would be stating an absolute truth. Whether you live in Bangladesh, Japan, or the United States, adultery is still wrong. Adultery was just as wrong a thousand years ago as it is today.
No human can think up or discover a new truth. Truth has always existed in God's nature; He is the author of truth. We must always measure our beliefs by the truth in God's Word. Since He is the author of truth and since absolute truth resides in Him, He is the only One who can guide us to absolute truth. With Him, we see truth face to face. Any other guide will only lead us into confusion and deception.
Whatever God says is absolutely right. Whatever He promises will always be fulfilled.
"The Patriot Post"
"I trust that the proposed Constitution afford a genuine specimen of representative government and republican government; and that it will answer, in an eminent degree, all the beneficial purposes of society." -- Alexander Hamilton, speech to the New York Ratifying Convention, 1788
"No morn ever dawned more favorable than ours did; and no day was every more clouded than the present! Wisdom, and good examples are necessary at this time to rescue the political machine from the impending storm." -- George Washington, letter to James Madison, 1786
"I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth -- that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the Ground without his Notice, is it probable that an Empire can rise without his Aid?" -- Benjamin Franklin, to Colleagues at the Constitutional Convention
"Founders As Christians"
Signer of the Declaration of Independence
My only hope of salvation is in the infinite, transcendent love of God manifested to the world by the death of His Son upon the cross. Nothing but His blood will wash away my sins. I rely exclusively upon it. Come, Lord Jesus! Come quickly! -- Benjamin Rush, The Autobiography of Benjamin Rush, George Corner, editor (Princeton: Princeton University Press for the American Philosophical Society, 1948), p. 166, Travels Through Life, An Account of Sundry Incidents & Events in the Life of Benjamin Rush.
Signer of the Declaration of Independence, Signer of the Constitution
I believe that there is one only living and true God, existing in three persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. . . that the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are a revelation from God. . . . that God did send His own Son to become man, die in the room and stead of sinners, and thus to lay a foundation for the offer of pardon and salvation to all mankind so as all may be saved who are willing to accept the Gospel offer. -- Lewis Henry Boutell, The Life of Roger Sherman (Chicago: A. C. McClurg and Company, 1896), pp. 272-273.
Carol Burnett Show outtakes - Tim Conway's Elephant Story
The Voice of the Martyrs - Persecution.com - A Global Perspective on the Persecution of God's Children
Iran: Two Women Arrested
On March 5, Marzieh Amirizadeh Esmaeilabad and Maryam Rustampoor were arrested by Iranian security forces and labeled "anti-government activists," according to Farsi Christian News Network (FCNN).
Thirty year-old Marzieh and 27-year-old Maryam are being held at Evin Prison, which is notorious for treating women badly. "Both women are allowed just a one minute telephone call everyday to their immediate families. Both are unwell and in need of urgent medical attention," FCNN reported. During their last call on March 28, Mazieh said that she was suffering from an infection and high fever. She said, "I am dying."
Marzieh and Maryam's apartment was searched and their belongings were confiscated. "Their only crime is that they are committed Christians who follow the teachings of Jesus," FCNN added. " They are being unfairly labeled as 'anti government activists' because of the hostility of the government towards practicing Christians."
The women have reportedly been interrogated numerous times and were held in three different police detention centers before being sent to Evin Prison. FCNN reported an exorbitant bail amount of US$ 400,000 has been set even though Marzieh and Maryam's families have been told on numerous occasions that a judge is not available to discuss the case.
Marzieh and Maryam's arrest is the latest incident highlighting increased government intimidation of Christians in Iran. Believers are subjected to surveillance, arrests, imprisonment, and sometimes torture.
The Voice of the Martyrs encourages you to pray for the immediate release of Marzieh and Maryam. Ask God to heal, encourage and protect them. Pray they will continue to stand for Christ during this difficult time.
Sunstein: Government must fund abortion
It appears President Obama, his White House appointees, and most Liberals on Capitol Hill are going to attempt to cram their own "loss of Judeo-Christian social values" down our throat, regardless of how we like it. - oyh
Declares 'no problem' forcing taxpayers with religious, moral conflict
By Aaron Klein
© 2009 WorldNetDaily
TEL AVIV – The government should be required to fund abortion in cases such as rape or incest, argues President Obama's newly confirmed regulatory czar, Cass Sunstein.
"I have argued that the Constitution .... forbids government from refusing to pay the expenses of abortion in cases of rape or incest, at least if government pays for childbirth in such cases," Sunstein wrote in his 1993 book "The Partial Constitution."
In the book, obtained and reviewed by WND, Sunstein sets forth a radical new interpretation of the Constitution. The book contains a chapter entitled "It's the government's money" in which Sunstein strongly argues the government should be compelled to fund abortions for women victimized by rape or incest.
The Obama czar posits that funding only childbirth but not abortion "has the precise consequence of turning women into involuntary incubators."
Sunstein argues that refusing to fund abortion "would require poor women to be breeders," while co-opting women's bodies "in the service of third parties" – referring to fetuses.
Sunstein wrote he has no problem with forcing taxpayers to fund abortions even if they morally object to their money being used for such a purpose.
Get Glenn Beck's 'Common Sense' ... The case against an out-of-control government: Inspired by Thomas Paine
He wrote: "There would be no tension with the establishment clause if people with religious or other objections were forced to pay for that procedure (abortion). Indeed, taxpayers are often forced to pay for things – national defense, welfare, certain forms of art, and others – to which they have powerful moral and even religious objections."
Sunstein is not shy about expressing his radical beliefs in papers and books, although many of his controversial arguments have received little to no news media attention or public scrutiny.
WND previously reported Sunstein drew up in an academic book a "First Amendment New Deal" – a new "Fairness Doctrine" that would include the establishment of a panel of "nonpartisan experts" to ensure "diversity of view" on the airwaves.
WND also reported Sunstein proposed a radical new "bill of rights" in a 2004 book, "The Second Bill of Rights: FDR'S Unfinished Revolution and Why We Need It More than Ever," in which he advanced the radical notion that welfare rights, including some controversial inceptions, be granted by the state.
WND has learned that in April 2005, Sunstein opened up a conference at Yale Law School entitled "The Constitution in 2020," which sought to change the nature and interpretation of the Constitution by that year.
Sunstein has been a main participant in the movement which openly seeks to create a "progressive" consensus as to what the U.S. Constitution should provide for by the year 2020. It also suggests strategy for how liberal lawyers and judges might bring such a constitutional regime into being.
Just before his appearance at the conference, Sunstein wrote a blog entry in which he explained he "will be urging that it is important to resist, on democratic grounds, the idea that the document should be interpreted to reflect the view of the extreme right-wing of the Republican Party."
In his "Second Bill of Rights" book, Sunstein laid out what he wants to become the new bill of rights, which he calls the Second Bill of Rights:
Among his mandates are:
The right to a useful and remunerative job in the industries or shops or farms or mines of the nation;
The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation;
The right of every farmer to raise and sell his products at a return which will give him and his family a decent living;
The right of every businessman, large and small, to trade in an atmosphere of freedom from unfair competition and domination by monopolies at home or abroad;
The right of every family to a decent home;
The right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health;
The right to adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment;
The right to a good education.
On one page in his "Second Bill of Rights" book, Sunstein claims he is "not seriously arguing" his bill of rights be "encompassed by anything in the Constitution," but on the next page he states that "if the nation becomes committed to certain rights, they may migrate into the Constitution itself."
Later in the book, Sunstein argues that "at a minimum, the second bill should be seen as part and parcel of America's constitutive commitments."
I remember reading about the children of Israel who turned from God time and time again, only to realize their mistake and pray for forgiveness. Each time, God would forgive them and they would walk with him for a time. So, I am going to ask you to join me in praying for our nation every day. Please read the email below. God is in control.
May God Have Mercy on America.
When we were in Texarkana last week, there were signs in people's yards that said, "America, prayer is our only hope" - with 2 Chron 7:14 underneath. We certainly need God's help!
I have no idea who started this, but I certainly agree with this e-mail. I heard a preacher on TV tonight who said if we pray for our nation that things will turn around.
After a day of contemplation and soul searching, I have decided to reach out to my friends and relatives and ask you to do something that has been troubling me for a long time.
Our nation is/has been on the slippery slope for a long time. If you look around you will find corruption, greed, moral decay, and a steady move away from the things that made us great. The principles upon which this nation was founded are no longer our backbone.
However, we can reverse this trend.
2 Chron. 7:14 in God's Word, He states, "If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land."
I am convinced that we must pray for our nation and its leaders and ask for forgiveness. So I ask you to join me in this plea to our Lord.
Would you please send this to people in your address book? Ask them to pray EVERY DAY.. (25 to the 5th power is 9,765,625 people.) IMAGINE if each person reaches TEN others... Or all TWENTY FIVE!
If you do and they comply, we will lift up millions and millions of prayers a day to our Creator. He will hear us, and in faith will answer.
Here's a quote from Ronald Reagan: "If we ever forget that we are one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under."
I truly believe this is why the United States of America is in the shape it's in today.
Most people have forgotten that we are ONE NATION UNDER GOD! Let us as Christians stand up and remind people of this.
God Bless, Tammie Miller
The Base Metal of Christian Socialism
by Joel McDurmonby Joel McDurmon
I am currently at work revising and expanding my free ebook God versus Socialism so that American Vision can produce a print version. The book will nearly double in length to about 150 pages and will expand the Bible’s criticism of socialism into at least three of the major voices of Christian socialism today: Jim Wallis, Tony Campolo, and Ron Sider. Each of these three men call themselves Evangelicals, profess to believe the Bible and the classic doctrines of the apostles’ creed. Each claim to only teach what the Bible teaches on poverty and politics, to have “no particular political agenda,” and yet the policies each proposes always line up point-by-point with the platform of the Democratic party. Yet since they put it forth under the guise of the Bible, Campolo argues that not to support his favored liberal legislation is “sinful.” I think there’s something fishy here.
Last week I wrote about the Fabian socialists and their effort to be wolves in sheep’s clothing. They wished to advance Marxism and socialism without being detected as atheistic revolutionary socialists. The attempted to subvert the Christians by using biblical ideas and Christian language to present socialist ideas that actually contradict the Bible. The three men I cover stand in this tradition. What follows—a brief excerpt from my upcoming book—will show that this has been going on for a long time. Socialism got its foothold in this country through active, concerned Christians duped by the propaganda wrapped in Bible verses.
“Christian Socialism” developed in the mid- to late-1800s and promoted moderate forms of socialism at first. But even these proponents made the redistribution of property central to their pleas. For example, Edward H. Rogers, a carpenter, Methodist lay preacher, and member of the “Christian Labor Union” of Boston (1870s-80s), preached this way: “The church, he declared, ought to demand that wealth be managed for the common good of the people.… He asserted that the fulfillment of God’s will ‘on earth, as in heaven’ involved the equitable distribution of the products of labor.”
The Christian Labor Union itself, in its journal Labor-Balance, advocated Marx’s “labor theory of value” (rejected by Jesus in the parable of the talents), and openly endorsed political socialism—in 1878 it even “printed the platform to the Socialistic Labor Party.” One of the Union’s leaders, Jesse Henry Jones, published a book called The Kingdom of Heaven which he called for the United States to adopt “communism” as “an actual, human, civil government upon the earth.”
The Socialist Party’s platform, which many of the social gospelers promoted over the decades, itself used openly Marxist language. The 1887 version appeals,
The basis of co-operative society stipulates the substitution of public ownership for private ownership of land, instruments of labor (machines, factories, etc.), and with it co-operative production and guarantee of a share in the product in accordance with the service rendered by the individual to society.
Therefore, the Party listed their demands:
We consider it the first duty of the Government and Legislatures to change the present economical conditions into a co-operative system of society.… For that purpose we strive for the acquisition of political power with all appropriate means.…
* The United States shall obtain possession of the railroads, canals, telegraphs, telephones, and all other means of public transportation.
* The municipalities to obtain possession of the local railroads, of ferries, and to supply the light to streets and public places.
* Furthering of workmen’s co-operative productive associations by public allowances; such associations to be preferred in the placing of contracts for public works.
* Inauguration of public works in times of economical depression [sound familiar?].
* The United States to have the right of expropriation of running patents, new inventions to be free to all, but inventors to be remunerated by national rewards.
* Progressive income tax and tax on inheritances; but smaller incomes to be exempt.
* Compulsory school education of all children under fourteen years of age, instruction in all educational institutions to be gratuitous and to be made accessible to all by public assistance (furnishing meals, clothes, books, etc.). All instruction to be under the direction of the United States and to be organized on a uniform plan.
* Uniform national marriage laws. Divorce to be granted upon mutual consent, and upon providing for the care of the children.
* Abolition of the Presidency, Vice-Presidency and Senate of the United States [abolition of the Consitutition]. An Executive Board to be established, whose members are to be elected, and may at any time be recalled, by the House of Representatives as the only legislative body. The States and Municipalities to adopt corresponding amendments to their constitutions and statutes [no Tenth Amendment!].
* Uniform law throughout the United States [no Tenth Amendment!]. Administration of justice to be free of charge. Abolition of capital punishment.
This is what these “Christian socialists”—in the name of Jesus Christ, in the name of scripture and the lofty moral principles of the God of the Bible—called Christians to devote to. In the name of Jesus, these guys wished to leverage to persuasive power of the church and the propagandistic value of the pulpits, to join and support a political Party that demanded outright communism and total revolution of what the United States is. And when the revolution was accomplished, the Christians would take the back seat in society: “Separation of all public affairs from religion; church property to be subject to taxation.” In other words, the allegedly Christian socialists wished for the church to sell-out to Marxism—a political system that wished to contradict, liquidate, and finally silence the church. “You scratch our back, and we’ll stab you in yours.”
It’s no wonder that a Christian giant such Charles Spurgeon saw Christian Socialism as a departure from Christianity. He warned his congregation in 1889, “I would not have you exchange the gold of individual Christianity for the base metal of Christian Socialism.” He rightly saw socialism as the fallout from rejecting God:
The god of modern thought exceedingly resembles the deities described in this Psalm [115:8]. Pantheism is wondrously akin to Polytheism, and yet differs very little from Atheism. The god manufactured by our great thinkers is a mere abstraction: he has no eternal purposes, he does not interpose on the behalf of his people, he cares but very little as to how much man sins, for he has given to the initiated “a larger hope” by which the most incorrigible are to be restored. He is what the last set of critics chooses to make him, he has said what they choose to say, and lie will do what they please to prescribe. Let this creed and its devotees alone, and they will work out their own refutation, for as now their god is fashioned like themselves, they will by degrees fashion themselves like their god; and when the principles of justice, law, and order shall have all been effectually sapped we may possibly witness in some form of socialism, similar to that which is so sadly spreading in Germany, a repetition of the evils which have in former ages befallen nations which have refused the living God, and set up gods of their own.
From this strong stand, we can understand why one of the fathers of socialism—Marx’s co-writer and financier Friedrich Engels—held a special hatred for Spurgeon. Christian scholar and journalist David Aikman mentions an interesting anecdote in his book on atheism, The Delusion of Disbelief. He writes,
The strong linkage between politics and religion in the late nineteenth century was having a profound social impact, one that deeply troubled Marx and Engels. The following story illustrates just how it incensed them. While playing a well-known Victorian parlor game with Karl Marx’s daughter, Engels answered with a single word a “Confessions” question (“What is your favorite motto?” “What is your favorite color?” etc.) that asked whom he most hated in life. “Spurgeon,” was Engels’s curt, one-word answer, referring to the English Baptist… whose sermons in the 1850s to the 1880s drew as many as twenty thousand people, many of them working-class folk. Why did Engels hate him so? Because Spurgeon was diverting England’s urban working class away from atheist revolutionary socialism to Christian parliamentary reformism.
Aikman’s assessment is right on. People who wish to spread other people’s wealth around must ultimately hate informed, influential Christians (really, all Christians) because the Bible mandates strict private property rights, strict enforcement of contracts, decentralized government, and just weights and measures for currency. Welfare States and Socialism do not hold up well under the lens of Scripture.
I just wish the three brethren, Wallis, Campolo, and Sider, could see this. Their books would get a lot more helpful to read. Unfortunately, Campolo actually says that those who do not support his political policies are “sinful.” Unfortunately, unlike the old guys, these guys and their ilk are the ones teaching your kids in college.
For the deceptions they spew, and my critiques of them, you have to wait for the book!
The lost Countrywide phone tapes
Oh, really! The tapes have been destroyed? Does this explain as to why Sen. Chris Dodd, who allegedly accepted a "special deal" with Countrywide, said he would tell his story later? Was Sen. Dodd working with a friend at Countrywide who also was guilty of unethical and/or illegal activity. Who, what, where, when, and why were the tapes destroyed? What did Sen. Dodd know and when did he know it? Another case of political cronyism at the lowest! - oyh
The past few months have seen a marked improvement in Sen. Chris Dodd's (D-Conn.) poll ratings, to the point where the most recent Quinnipiac poll had him within 5 points of his best known GOP challenger, former Rep. Rob Simmons. In that same survey, Dodd's disapproval rating had dropped below 50% for the first time in roughly six months.
But Monday's Wall Street Journal report about Countrywide Financial Corp., which refinanced mortgages for Dodd in 2003, threatens to put the brakes on his comeback by reinvigorating the issue that got him in trouble to begin with.
According to the Journal's account (subscription req'd.),Countrywide recorded phone conversations with borrowers in the controversial mortgage program that included public officials, but those recordings have been destroyed.
While there's only a passing mention of Dodd--who has consistently denied any wrongdoing or receiving any favorable treatment--any story that revives the Countrywide VIP program complicates the five-term senator's re-election bid.
Simmons has already seized on the report and within hours sent out a fundraising email that asks ominously, "What was in those recordings?"
Last Monday was a profound evening, hearing Dr. Charles Krauthammers speak to the Center for the American Experiment
Last Monday was a profound evening, hearing Dr. Charles Krauthammers speak to the Center for the American Experiment. He is a brilliant intellectual, seasoned and articulate. He is forthright and careful in his analysis, and never resorts to emotions or personal insults. He is NOT a fear monger nor an extremist in his comments and views. He is a fiscal conservative, and has a Pulitzer prize for writing. He is a frequent contributor to Fox News and writes weekly for the Washington Post. The entire room was held spellbound during his talk. I have shared this with many of you and several have asked me to summarize his comments, as we are living in uncharted waters economically and internationally. Even 2 Democrats at my table agreed with everything he said!
If you feel like forwarding this to those who are open minded and have not ‘drunk the Kool-Aid’, feel free.
A summary of his comments:
1. Mr. Obama is a very intellectual, charming individual. He is not to be underestimated. He is a ‘cool customer’ who doesn’t show his emotions. It’s very hard to know what’s ‘behind the mask’. Taking down the Clinton dynasty from a political neophyte was an amazing accomplishment... The Clinton’s still do not understand what hit them. Obama was in the perfect place at the perfect time.
2. Obama has political skills comparable to Reagan and Clinton. He has a way of making you think he’s on your side, agreeing with your position, while doing the opposite. Pay no attention, to what he SAYS; rather, watch what he DOES!
3. Obama has a ruthless quest for power. He did not come to Washington to make something out of himself, but rather to change everything, including dismantling capitalism. He can’t be straightforward on his ambitions, as the public would not go along. He has a heavy hand, and wants to ‘level the playing field with income redistribution and punishment of the achievers of society. He would like to model the USA to Great Britain or Canada.
4. His 3 main goals are to control ENERGY, PUBLIC EDUCATION, & NAT’L HEALTHCARE by the Federal government. He doesn’t care about the auto or financial services industries, but got them as an early bonus. The cap and trade will add costs to everything and stifle growth. Paying for FREE college education is his goal. Most scary is the healthcare program, because if you make it FREE and add 46,000,000 people to a Medicare-type single-payer system, the costs will go thru the roof. The only way to control costs is with massive RATIONING of services, like in Canada. God forbid.
5. He’s surrounded himself with mostly far-left academic types. No one around him has ever run even a candy store. But they’re going to try and run the auto, financial, banking and other industries. This obviously can’t work in the long run. Obama’s not a socialist; rather a far-left secular progressive bent on nothing short of revolution. He ran as a moderate, but will govern from the hard left. Again, watch what he does, not what he says.
6. Obama doesn’t really see himself as President of the USA, more as a ruler over the world. He sees himself above it all, trying to orchestrate and coordinate various countries and their agendas. He sees moral equivalency in all cultures. His apology tour in Germany and England was a prime example of how he sees America, as an imperialist nation that has been arrogant, rather than a great noble nation that has at times made errors. This is the 1st President ever who has chastised our allies and appeased our enemies!
7. He’s now handing out goodies. He hopes that the bill (& pain) will not ‘come due’ until after he’s reelected in 2012. He’d like to blame all problems on Bush from the past, and hopefully his successor in the future. He has a huge ego, and Mr. Krauthammer believes he is a narcissist.
8. Republicans are in the wilderness for a while, but will emerge strong. We’re ‘pining’ for another Reagan, but there’ll never be another like him. He believes Mitt Romney, Tim Pawlenty & Bobby Jindahl (except for his terrible speech in Feb.) are the future of the party. Newt Gingrich is brilliant, but has baggage. Sarah Palin is sincere and intelligent, but needs to really be seriously boning up on facts and info if she’s to be a serious candidate in the future... We need to return to the party of lower taxes, smaller government, personal responsibility, strong National defense, and States’ rights.
9. The current level of spending is irresponsible and outrageous. We’re spending trillions that we don’t have. This could lead to hyperinflation, depression or worse. No country has ever spent themselves into prosperity. The media is giving Obama, Reid & Pelosi a pass because they love their agenda. But eventually the bill will come due and people will realize the huge bailouts didn’t work, nor will the stimulus pkg. These were trillion-dollar payoffs to Obama’s allies, unions & the Congress to placate the left, so he can get support for #4 above.
10. The election was over in mid-Sept. when Lehman brothers failed. Fear & panic swept in, we had an unpopular President, and the war was grinding on indefinitely w/o a clear outcome. The people are in pain, and the mantra of ‘change’ caused people to act emotionally. Any Democrat would have won this election; it was surprising it was as close as it was.
11. In 2012, if the unemployment rate is over 10%, Republicans will be swept back into power. If it’s under 8%, the Democrats continue to roll. If it’s between 8-10%, it’ll be a dogfight. It’ll all be about the economy.
I hope this gets you really thinking about what’s happening in Washington and Congress. There’s a left-wing revolution going on, according to Krauthammer, and he encourages us to keep the faith and join the loyal resistance. The work will be hard, but we’re right on most issues and can reclaim our country, before it’s far too late. Direct all replies to: firstname.lastname@example.org IN GOD WE TRUST!
Another Failed Presidency
By Geoffrey P. Hunt
Barack Obama is on track to have the most spectacularly failed presidency since Woodrow Wilson.
In the modern era, we've seen several failed presidencies--led by Jimmy Carter and LBJ. Failed presidents have one strong common trait-- they are repudiated, in the vernacular, spat out. Of course, LBJ wisely took the exit ramp early, avoiding a shove into oncoming traffic by his own party. Richard Nixon indeed resigned in disgrace, yet his reputation as a statesman has been partially restored by his triumphant overture to China.
George Bush Jr didn't fail so much as he was perceived to have been too much of a patrician while being uncomfortable with his more conservative allies. Yet George Bush Sr is still perceived as a man of uncommon decency, loyal to the enduring American character of rugged self-determination, free markets, and generosity. George W will eventually be treated more kindly by historians as one whose potential was squashed by his own compromise of conservative principles, in some ways repeating the mistakes of his father, while ignoring many lessons in executive leadership he should have learned at Harvard Business School. Of course George W could never quite overcome being dogged from the outset by half of the nation convinced he was electorally illegitimate -- thus aiding the resurgence of the liberal wing of the Democratic Party.
But, Barack Obama is failing. Failing big. Failing fast. And failing everywhere: foreign policy, domestic initiatives, and most importantly, in forging connections with the American people. The incomparable Dorothy Rabinowitz in the Wall Street Journal put her finger on it: He is failing because he has no understanding of the American people, and may indeed loathe them. Fred Barnes of the Weekly Standard says he is failing because he has lost control of his message, and is overexposed. Clarice Feldman of American Thinker produced a dispositive commentary showing that Obama is failing because fundamentally he is neither smart nor articulate; his intellectual dishonesty is conspicuous by its audacity and lack of shame.
But, there is something more seriously wrong: How could a new president riding in on a wave of unprecedented promise and goodwill have forfeited his tenure and become a lame duck in six months? His poll ratings are in free fall. In generic balloting, the Republicans have now seized a five point advantage. This truly is unbelievable. What's going on?
No narrative. Obama doesn't have a narrative. No, not a narrative about himself. He has a self-narrative, much of it fabricated, cleverly disguised or written by someone else. But this self-narrative is isolated and doesn't connect with us. He doesn't have an American narrative that draws upon the rest of us. All successful presidents have a narrative about the American character that intersects with their own where they display a command of history and reveal an authenticity at the core of their personality that resonates in a positive endearing way with the majority of Americans. We admire those presidents whose narratives not only touch our own, but who seem stronger, wiser, and smarter than we are. Presidents we admire are aspirational peers, even those whose politics don't align exactly with our own: Teddy Roosevelt, FDR, Harry Truman, Ike, Reagan.
But not this president. It's not so much that he's a phony, knows nothing about economics, is historically illiterate, and woefully small minded for the size of the task-- all contributory of course. It's that he's not one of us. And whatever he is, his profile is fuzzy and devoid of content, like a cardboard cutout made from delaminated corrugated paper. Moreover, he doesn't command our respect and is unable to appeal to our own common sense. His notions of right and wrong are repugnant and how things work just don't add up. They are not existential. His descriptions of the world we live in don't make sense and don't correspond with our experience.
In the meantime, while we've been struggling to take a measurement of this man, he's dissed just about every one of us--financiers, energy producers, banks, insurance executives, police officers, doctors, nurses, hospital administrators, post office workers, and anybody else who has a non-green job. Expect Obama to lament at his last press conference in 2012: "For those of you I offended, I apologize. For those of you who were not offended, you just didn't give me enough time; if only I'd had a second term, I could have offended you too."
Mercifully, the Founders at the Constitutional Convention in 1787 devised a useful remedy for such a desperate state--staggered terms for both houses of the legislature and the executive. An equally abominable Congress can get voted out next year. With a new Congress, there's always hope of legislative gridlock until we vote for president again two short years after that.
Yes, small presidents do fail, Barack Obama among them. The coyotes howl but the wagon train keeps rolling along.
"The e-mail Bag"
Farmer relieving pain!
A lone tourist who is passing through the suburbs on the way to town by car, unfortunately experiences mechanical problems with the automobile. The car stalls and the tourist parks the car by the side of the road and waits for help.
Not much later, a farmer happens to pass by with a truck full of farm animals. The farmer offers the tourist a lift to town and proceeds to explain that he is bringing his farm animals to the town market, where they will be auctioned off to the highest bidders.
Well, it so happens that on the way to the town, the farmer being so engrossed in his story, unintentionally wanders into the other side of road where another vehicle is approaching in the other direction.
The farmer realizes his absent mindness and attempts to avoid the possible collision with the other vehicle. He just misses the other car, but unfortunately crashes the truck into the side of the road. The tourist winds up thrown into a ditch and suffers broken ribs and a broken arm and leg and is obviously in extreme pain. The farm animals are all messed up very badly and the farmer, although remaining inside the vehicle, still suffers cuts and scrapes.
The farmer gets out of the truck and looks at his farm animals.
The chickens all have broken limbs and can barely move. "These chickens are all useless! Nobody will want to buy these chickens anymore!" bellows the farmer. With that, he grabs and loads his shotgun and blows away the chickens.
Next, he sees the pigs and they are all lame and bleeding profusely. "These pigs are all worthless now! I'll get nothing for them!" yells the farmer. With great rage, the farmer reloads his shotgun and blows away the pigs.
The farmer looks at the sheep and they all have broken limbs and their wool is all bloodied. "Worthless sheep!" screams the farmer and with that, he reloads his shotgun and blows away the sheep.
Meanwhile, the injured tourist witnesses all of this carnage in great horror.
The farmer then moves over to the side of the ditch and looks at the tourist. "Are you okay down there?" asked the farmer.
"NEVER FELT BETTER IN MY ENTIRE LIFE!!!" the tourist yelled back.
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Promoting "God's Holy Values and American Freedoms"!
Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going. -- Jim Ryun
Give the world the best you have and the best will come back to you. -- Madeline Bridges
"Daily Devotions" (KJV and/or NLT)
"We love each other as a result of His loving us first." (1 John 4:19)
In 1950, Dr. Joon Gon Kim fled North Korea. But the communist guerrillas found him. One quiet evening the communists invaded his village, killing everyone---including Dr. Kim's wife and father. Dr. Kim himself was beaten severely and left for dead. When he returned to consciousness, he took his surviving daughter in his arms and fled to the mountains, where the two of them barely survived.
Over the next few weeks his mind kept returning to Jesus, who, like Dr. Kim, had been beaten and tortured---but to the point of death. The difference was that Jesus held no bitterness.
As Dr. Kim reflected on those facts, his heart was filled with the peace and the love of Christ. The Spirit of God immediately placed in Dr. Kim's heart a strong desire to return to the village and seek out the communist chief who had led the guerrilla attack. His burden was to tell the man that he loved him---and to tell him about Christ.
When Dr. Kim walked through the communist leader's door, the chief was dumbfounded! Dr. Kim had been presumed dead. But after a few short moments they were kneeling together. In a short period of time, Dr. Kim helped to build a church for nearly two hundred communist converts.
As believers, we love because He first loved us, and we are capable of loving with a miraculous, transforming, supernatural love if we trust and obey our risen Lord.
"The Patriot Post"
"We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America. .... Done ... the seventeenth day of September, in the year of our LORD one thousand seven hundred and eighty seven." -- George Washington and the Signers
"These are the times that try men's souls." -- Thomas Paine
"Liberty must at all hazards be supported. We have a right to it, derived from our Maker. ... Our obligations to our country never cease but with our lives." -- John Adams
"Of those men who have overturned the liberties of republics, the greatest number have begun their career by paying an obsequious court to the people, commencing demagogues and ending tyrants." -- Alexander Hamilton
"The principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale." -- Thomas Jefferson
"Contemplate the mangled bodies of your countrymen, and then say 'what should be the reward of such sacrifices?' ... If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude than the animated contest of freedom, go from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen!" -- Samuel Adams
"A free-born people ... may make use of such power as God has given them to recover and support their ... liberties." -- Samuel Adams and the Sons of Liberty after the Boston Tea Party
The first picture is from Arlington National Cemetery, I suggest that you visit it soon.
I PLEDGE ALLEGIANCE TO THE FLAG,
OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
AND TO THE REPUBLIC FOR WHICH IT STANDS,
ONE NATION UNDER GOD,
INDIVISIBLE, WITH LIBERTY AND JUSTICE FOR ALL!
I was asked to send on if I agree, or delete if I don’t.
It is said that 86% of Americans believe in God.
Therefore I have a very hard time understanding why there is such a problem in having ‘In God! We Trust’ on our money and having ‘God’ in the Pledge of Allegiance.
I believe it’s time we stand up for what we believe!
If you agree, pass this on, if not delete.
PLEASE KEEP THIS GOING, EVEN IF YOU HAVE PASSED IT ON BEFORE!!
I was a Medic in WW11 and saw my comrades die for you to enjoy freedom. and who did the majority of you vote for?
By: Peter Vardilos
THAT’S RIGHT! A FLAG BURNER AND BIBLE TRASHER. ONE WHO WAS RAISED IN THE MUSLEM FAITH. HANG YOUR HEAD IN SHAME. YOUR PEERS MAY NOT KNOW WHO YOU VOTED FOR BUT GOD DOES. MAY THE GOOD LORD BLESS ALL WHO FOLLOW IN JESUS STEPS
"Founders As Christians"
Charles Cotesworth Pinckney
Signer of the Constitution
To the eternal, immutable, and only true God be all honor and glory, now and forever, Amen!. . . -- Will of Charles Cotesworth Pinckney
Revolutionary War General, First Surveyor General of the United States
[F]irst, I give my soul to a holy, sovereign God Who gave it in humble hope of a blessed immortality through the atonement and righteousness of Jesus Christ and the sanctifying grace of the Holy Spirit. My body I commit to the earth to be buried in a decent Christian manner. I fully believe that this body shall, by the mighty power of God, be raised to life at the last day; 'for this corruptable (sic) must put on incorruption and this mortal must put on immortality.' [I Corinthians 15:53] -- Will of Rufus Putnam
Skidboot the Dog
Awesome Paint Job/ Keep Him Walking
Check out what some of our boys overseas did to their helicopter. Some Afghan is probably freaking out right about now. This very special Mi-24 helicopter is presently flying in Afghanistan, where it is no doubt causing quite a stir.
God Bless the U.S.A.
GOD BLESS AMERICA
Keep him walking.
This man is walking the World for Peace. Please pass him on so that he can reach his destination.
Say a prayer for our soldiers, then pass him on to others.
This is really interesting how someone did this. He's walking around the world -- via e-mail!
Pass it on so he can get there! PUT YOUR LOCATION IN SUBJECT LIN
Olympia Snowe, It’s Time to Go.
As for me, this article below by Texan2driver's Blog should include Maine's other Liberal Republican In Name Only (RINO) Sen. Susan M. Collins. - oyh
By: Texan2driver's Blog
Olympia Snowe (Job) is not a conservative, and is a “Republican” in name only. She votes with liberals on almost every issue, and torpedoes her own party at every opportunity.
Olympia, time for you to jump ship and follow your old buddy Arlen Specter. You are not doing the Republican party, conservatives, or America any good. At least be honest and show America and your constituents who you REALLY are.
Sunstein: Fetuses 'use' women, abortion limits 'troublesome'
Obama regulatory chief offers radical new interpretation of Constitution
By Aaron Klein
© 2009 WorldNetDaily
JERUSALEM – Restrictions on access to abortion would turn women's bodies into vessels to be "used" by fetuses, according to President Obama's newly confirmed regulatory czar, Cass Sunstein.
"A restriction on access to abortion turns women's reproductive capacities into something to be used by fetuses. .... Legal and social control of women's sexual and reproductive capacities has been a principal historical source of sexual inequality," Sunstein wrote in his 1993 book "The Partial Constitution."
In the book, obtained and reviewed by WND, Sunstein sets forth a radical new interpretation of the Constitution. In one chapter, titled "Pornography, abortion, surrogacy," Sunstein argued against restrictions on abortion and pornography.
"Restrictions on abortion, surrogacy and free availability of pornography are troublesome," he wrote.
"I do not mean to oppose equality to liberty. .... Liberty does not entail respect for all 'choices,'" he maintained.
Sunstein's views on fetuses are not limited to his 1993 book.
WND reported earlier this month that in a 2003 book review, Sunstein argued there is no moral concern regarding cloning human beings since human embryos, which develop into a baby, are "only a handful of cells."
In addition to Sunstein's moral disregard for human embryos, WND reported the Obama czar several times has quoted approvingly from an author who likened animals to slaves and argued an adult dog or a horse is more rational than a human infant and should, therefore, be granted similar rights.
A brief video on YouTube captures Sunstein at a 2002 event using the writings of Jeremy Bentham, a 19th century social reformer and animal-rights pioneer.
"You've heard a reference to Bentham, so let's listen to him, shall we," he begins in the video.
He then quotes from Bentham's 1789 primer, "Introduction to Principals of Morals and Legislation," written just after slaves had been freed by the French but were still held captive in the British dominions:
"The day may come, when the rest of the animal creation may acquire those rights which never could have been withholden from them but by the hand of tyranny. The French have already discovered that the blackness of the skin is no reason why a human being should be abandoned without redress to the caprice of a tormentor," Sunstein states, quoting Bentham.
Sunstein continues quoting the author: "A full-grown horse or dog is beyond comparison a more rational, as well as a more conversable animal, than an infant of a day or a week or even a month, old. But suppose the case were otherwise."
The rest of Bentham's sentence, not captured in the video, continued, "what would it avail? The question is not, can they (animals) reason or can they talk? But, can they suffer?"
While the YouTube video offers only a brief sound bite with no context, a WND review of Sunstein's academic writings find he used the same verses from Bentham to push for animal rights.
In the footnotes to a 2002 academic paper for Harvard University, "The Rights of Animals: A Very Short Primer," Sunstein expresses his approval of Bentham's arguments:
"I suggest that Bentham and Mill were not wrong to offer an analogy between current uses of animals and human slavery," he wrote.
Several other works by Sunstein, including his books, quote approvingly of Bentham's statements comparing adult dogs and horses to human infants.
In the Harvard paper, Sunstein even suggests animals could be granted the right to sue humans in court.
"We could even grant animals a right to bring suit without insisting that animals are in some general sense 'persons,' or that they are not property," he wrote.
The Senate two weeks ago confirmed Sunstein as Obama's administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, overcoming months of delay due to Republican concerns that he would push a radical animal-rights agenda.
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More ACORN News: Illegal use of Funds
More bad news for the Democratic Parties Favorite community organizing group, ACORN. While Harry Reid continues to get heat at home for refusing to allow Senate hearings on ACORN, Senator Grassley had his staff do a little investigation of their own. According to the Capital Research Center, Grassley (R-Iowa), asked the IRS to probe ACORN – and asked that the group be dropped from the Combined Federal Campaign (a charitable program for government workers). This is not the first time the Senator has gone after the ACORN criminal enterprise, in 2006 he asked the IRS to investigate ACORN for voter fraud.
Yesterday Grassley sent a letter to the IRS Commissioner Douglas H. Shulman and another letter to John Berry, Director of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management asking for an investigation. Both letters are available here.
At the same time Grassley released documents that show leaders of ACORN community transferred several million dollars in charitable and government money meant for the poor to parts of the group that have political and sometimes profit-making missions.
Grassley's documents indicate that ACORN's tax-exempt groups along with its tangled web of allied organizations used more than half their charitable and public money in 2006 to pay other ACORN affiliates. Grassley called the transactions a "big shell game" and said donors may be surprised by how the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, known for helping the poor obtain housing and health care, was spending their money. He urged the Internal Revenue Service to take a closer look.
In the letter to Berry, he asks that the ACORN Institute “and any other ACORN affiliates, particularly any of those reviewed by my staff, be prohibited from participating in the CFC. The acts perpetrated by ACORN employees were impermissible and should not be supported with CFC dollars.”
CFC refers to the Combined Federal Campaign, which bills itself as “the world’s largest and most successful annual workplace charity campaign.” CFC is a federally administered program that channels donations from federal civilian, postal and military employees into causes deemed worthwhile. It is unclear how much money the ACORN network receives through CFC.
In his letter to Shulman at the IRS, Grassley wrote that he was “encouraged” that IRS “severed all ties” with ACORN. “Aside from the pervasive issues pertaining to several allegations of voter fraud, the recently released investigative videos are very troubling. These videos reveal ACORN employees and/or volunteers offering tax advice specifically to further clearly illegal activities such as prostitution and human trafficking.”
Please provide the number of returns prepared at ACORN tax clinics for the last five years. Does the IRS intend to review these returns for accuracy? Please confirm that IRS will terminate its relationship with all organizations in the ACORN family, particularly those reviewed by my staff. Does the IRS intend to renew its relationship with ACORN after ACORN completes its internal review?
Grassley is referring to the IRS announcement yesterday that it dropped ACORN from its Volunteer Income Tax Preparation (VITA) program, a volunteer tax assistance program through which around 3 million low- and moderate-income tax filers received free advice this year. ACORN provided help on approximately 25,000 returns, the IRS said yesterday.
Grassley also wrote “[i]t is disturbing that many of the organizations in the ACORN “family” may not actually meet the definition of related for 990 reporting purposes, even though ACORN deems them to be part of the ‘family.’” A “990” is an IRS Form 990 which is a nonprofit organization’s annual tax return.
To Understand what a form 990 is I have uploaded the ACORN Housing 990 from 2007 and you can acess it by clicking here. Among the things you can find out from it are a group's large contributors and dispersements.
What may foreshadow a future demand for a forensic audit of ACORN, the senator also asks what procedures the IRS follows when “auditing organizations like this where the movement of money appears to be a shell game.” He asks, “Do IRS audit procedures require auditors to follow the money trail to or from a charitable organization to determine whether that money is being used for impermissible activities, including electioneering and promoting illegal acts?
Finally, Grassley suggests ACORN might be a massive criminal conspiracy. He wrote:
Given what looks like a shell game perpetrated by the ACORN tax-exempt entities appears to be no different than that conducted by the charities involved in the Jack Abramoff scandal, how have IRS rules, regulations, reporting requirements and enforcement actions changed in response to the Abramoff abuses?
Looks like the Noose is continuing to tighten round the neck of this criminal enterprise, but while these investigations are great, what is really needed is an independent investigation by an independent prosecutor so the FULL story is told.
A LITTLE GUN HISTORY
In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control... From 1929 to 1953, about 20 million dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
In 1911, Turkey established gun control. From 1915 to 1917, 1.5 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
Germany established gun control in 1938 and from 1939 to 1945, a total of 13 million Jews and others who were unable to defend themselves were rounded up and exterminated.
China established gun control in 1935. From 1948 to 1952, 20 million political dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
Guatemala established gun control in 1964. From 1964 to 1981, 100,000 Mayan Indians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
Uganda established gun control in 1970. From 1971 to 1979, 300,000 Christians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
Cambodia established gun control in 1956. From 1975 to 1977, one million educated people, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
Defenseless people rounded up and exterminated in the 20th Century because of gun control: 56 million...
It has now been 12 months since gun owners in Australia were forced by new law to surrender 640,381 personal firearms to be destroyed by their own Government, a program costing Australia taxpayers more than $500 million dollars. The first year results are now in:
List of 7 items:
Australia-wide, homicides are up 3.2 percent.
Australia-wide, assaults are up 8.6 percent.
Australia-wide, armed robberies are up 44 percent (yes, 44 percent)!
In the state of Victoria alone, homicides with firearms are now up 300 percent. Note that while the law-abiding citizens turned them in, the criminals did not, and criminals still possess their guns!
While figures over the previous 25 years showed a steady decrease in armed robbery with firearms, this has changed drastically upward in the past 12 months, since criminals now are guaranteed that their prey is unarmed.
There has also been a dramatic increase in break-ins and assaults of the ELDERLY. Australian politicians are at a loss to explain how public safety has decreased, after such monumental effort, and expense was expended in successfully ridding Australian society of guns. The Australian experience and the other historical facts above prove it.
You won't see this data on the US evening news, or hear politicians disseminating this information.
Guns in the hands of honest citizens save lives and property and, yes, gun-control laws adversely affect only the law-abiding citizens Take note my fellow Americans, before it's too late!
The next time someone talks in favor of gun control, please remind them of this history lesson.
With guns, we are 'citizens.'
Without them, we are 'subjects'.
During WWII the Japanese decided not to invade America because they knew most Americans were ARMED!
If you value your freedom, please spread this anti-gun control message to all of your friends.
The purpose of fighting is to win. There is no possible victory in defense. The sword is more important than the shield, and skill is more important than either. The final weapon is the brain. All else is supplemental.
SWITZERLAND ISSUES EVERY HOUSEHOLD A GUN!
SWITZERLAND'S GOVERNMENT TRAINS EVERY ADULT THEY ISSUE A RIFLE.
SWITZERLANDHAS THE LOWEST GUN RELATED CRIME RATE OF ANY
CIVILIZED COUNTRY IN THE WORLD!!!
IT'S A NO BRAINER!
DON'T LET OUR GOVERNMENT WASTE MILLIONS OF OUR TAX DOLLARS
IN AN EFFORT TO MAKE ALL LAW ABIDING CITIZENS AN EASY TARGET.
I'm a firm believer of the 2nd Amendment!
If you are too, please forward.
Just think how powerful our government is getting!
They think these other countries just didn't do it right.
Learn from history.
Gore-Backed Car Firm Gets Large U.S. Loan
By JOSH MITCHELL and STEPHEN POWER
WASHINGTON -- A tiny car company backed by former Vice President Al Gore has just gotten a $529 million U.S. government loan to help build a hybrid sports car in Finland that will sell for about $89,000.
The award this week to California startup Fisker Automotive Inc. follows a $465 million government loan to Tesla Motors Inc., purveyors of a $109,000 British-built electric Roadster. Tesla, like Fisker, is a California startup focusing on high-end hybrids, with a number of celebrity endorsements that is backed by investors that have contributed to Democratic campaigns.
The awards to Fisker and Tesla have prompted concern from companies that have had their bids for loans rejected, and criticism from groups that question why vehicles aimed at the wealthiest customers are getting loans subsidized by taxpayers.
"This is not for average Americans," said Agence France-Presse/Getty Images
Fisker's Karma hybrid sports car, above, will initially cost about $89,000.
The awards to Fisker and Tesla have prompted concern from companies that have had their bids for loans rejected, and criticism from groups that question why vehicles aimed at the wealthiest customers are getting loans subsidized by taxpayers.
"This is not for average Americans," said
The awards to Fisker and Tesla have prompted concern from companies that have had their bids for loans rejected, and criticism from groups that question why vehicles aimed at the wealthiest customers are getting loans subsidized by taxpayers.
"This is not for average Americans," said Leslie Paige, a spokeswoman for Citizens Against Government Waste, an anti-tax group in Washington. "This is for people to put something in their driveway that is a conversation piece. It's status symbol thing."
DOE officials spent months working with Fisker on its application, touring its Irvine, Calif., and Pontiac, Mich., facilities and test-driving prototypes.
Matt Rogers, who oversees the department's loan programs as a senior adviser to Energy Secretary Steven Chu, said Fisker was awarded the loan after a "detailed technical review" that concluded the company could eventually deliver a highly fuel-efficient hybrid car to a mass audience. Fisker said most of its DOE loan will be used to finance U.S. production of a $40,000 family sedan that has yet to be designed.
"It's the ability to drive significant change in fuel economy across a large market segment" that swayed the department to approve the Fisker loan, Mr. Rogers said. "We got quite excited."
Henrik Fisker, who designed cars for BMW, Aston Martin and Tesla before starting his Fisker Automotive in 2007, said his goal is to build the first plug-in electric hybrids that won't sacrifice the luxury, performance and looks of traditional gas-powered luxury cars.
The Karma will target an exclusive audience -- Gore was one of the first to sign up for one. Mr. Fisker says all new technology starts out being expensive. He pointed to flat-screen televisions that once started at $25,000 but are now affordable to the mass market.
The four-door Karma, powered by a lithium-ion battery, will be able to run solely on electric power for 50 miles, and will achieve an average fuel economy of 100 mpg over the span of a year, the company says. Production is scheduled to start in December, with about 15,000 vehicles a year expected to hit the U.S. market starting next June.
Many of the 1,500 people who have made deposits on the Karma are former BMW and Mercedes owners who want an environmentally friendly car without sacrificing luxury, Mr. Fisker said.
He said he pitched the Karma to Mr. Gore at an event hosted by KPCB last year, and that the former vice president almost immediately submitted a down payment for the car.
Kalee Kreider, a spokeswoman for Mr. Gore, confirmed that the former vice president backs Fisker and purchased a Karma. "He believes that a global shift of the automobile fleet toward electric vehicles, accompanying a shift toward renewable-energy generation, represents an important part of a sensible strategy for solving the climate crisis," she said in a statement.
Fisker's top investors include Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, a veteran Silicon Valley venture-capital firm of which Gore is a partner. Employees of KPCB have donated more than $2.2 million to political campaigns, mostly for Democrats, including President Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonpartisan group that tracks campaign contributions.
Officials at Kleiner Perkins didn't return requests for comment.
Asked whether Mr. Gore had any influence on Fisker's application, the DOE's Rogers said, "None at all."
"This is a very attractive, very across-party-lines kind of vehicle," Mr. Rogers said. "All of the detailed due diligence [was] done by independent review teams."
Other Fisker investors include Eco-Drive (Capital) Partners LLC, an investment consortium, and Qatar Investment Authority, a state-run investor based in Qatar.
Fisker's government loans will come from a $25 billion program established by Congress in 2007 to help auto makers invest in the technology to meet a new congressional mandate to improve fuel efficiency. In June, the DOE awarded the first $8 billion from the program to Ford Motor Co., Nissan Motor Co., and Tesla, which are all developing electric cars.
Some companies that have been turned down for loans from DOE say they did not get much feedback from the department about their applications. O. John Coletti, president of EcoMotors International of Troy, Mich., said his company applied for a $20 million loan from the agency last December, and last month got a one-page rejection letter from the loan program's director, Lachlan Seward. EcoMotors' lead investor is Vinod Khosla, himself a former Kleiner Perkins partner and a longtime campaign contributor to Republicans and Democrats alike.
"I don't have an issue with the winners … it's possible somebody has better ideas than us," Mr. Coletti said. At the same time, he said, "More feedback from DOE on a timely basis would be wonderful. When you're running a business you'd like to know whether you're going to be able to take advantage of this opportunity."
Mr. Coletti's company -- which makes diesel engines and is still waiting to hear from the Department on a separate loan application to help it build a manufacturing facility -- isn't without politically well-connected patrons, either. Its major investor is Vinod Khosla, himself a former Kleiner Perkins partner who has donated to campaigns.
Scott Redmond, CEO of XP Vehicles Inc., said he met with DOE officials twice in Washington after applying for a $40 million loan to develop a $15,000 to $25,000 hybrid, and that both times he was told his application looked good. Since receiving a rejection letter from DOE in August, Redmond said, he has been unable to get a full explanation as to why his request was turned down.
Mr. Rogers said he was not at liberty to discuss individual applications that had been turned down, but said the process has been handled fairly and objectively.
Federal Reserve Scandal Bigger than ACORN
AIM Column | By Cliff Kincaid
While the ACORN scandal involves tens of millions of taxpayer dollars…some other videos that examine what has happened to trillions of dollars involving the Federal Reserve have become increasingly popular.
On "The O'Reilly Factor" on Wednesday night, Democratic Rep. Barney Frank dropped a bombshell about the ACORN scandal that has not been disputed by Congressional Republicans-the group received $14.2 million in funding from the Bush administration.
But the question of what the Federal Reserve is doing with trillions of taxpayer dollars makes the ACORN scandal look like peanuts.
For the first time, a hearing is being held on Rep. Ron Paul's Federal Reserve Transparency Act of 2009 (H.R. 1207) by the House Committee on Financial Services. Grass-roots pressure has been credited with forcing the hearing into what has happened to trillions of dollars supposedly spent by the Federal Reserve on the stabilization of the financial system.
In prepared testimony, Thomas E. Woods, Jr. of the Ludwig von Mises Institute offers his strong support for the bill and declares, "...if our monetary system were really as strong, robust, and beyond criticism as its cheerleaders claim, why does it need to rely so heavily on public ignorance? How can it be a sound banking system that depends on keeping the public in the dark about the condition of its financial institutions?"
As the unprecedented hearing was taking shape, however, Rep. Frank put a statement on the website of the House Committee on Financial Services, which he chairs, going into detail about Republican funding of ACORN.
He declared, "ACORN was the recipient of funding throughout the Bush administration, with $14.2 million going from the Bush administration to ACORN through HUD. And I can attest that this was an entirely Executive Branch decision: No congressional action in any way, shape or form required that any of these funds go to ACORN as opposed to other organization [sic]. And I do not remember, during the period from 2001 to 2006 when the Republicans controlled the White House, HUD, the House and the Senate, and ACORN was receiving millions of dollars, any Republican objection to this."
The ACORN scandal was exposed by the BigGovernment.com website, which is now urging donations to a legal defense fund for the filmmakers, who are being sued by ACORN.
Meanwhile, some conservative Catholic groups have been putting pressure on the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD), which gave ACORN $7.3 million over the last ten years, to de-fund other groups that engage in activities inconsistent with Catholic teaching.
Rob Gasper, the founder of Bellarmine Veritas Ministry, launched an investigation which found that the CCHD had funded groups advocating abortion or prostitution, or both.
As a result, on the insidecatholic.com website, prominent Catholic writer and thinker Deal W. Hudson has called for the elimination of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, saying, "No amount of house-cleaning is going to make this arm of the USCCB [United States Conference of Catholic Bishops] worthy of our donations."
While the ACORN scandal involves tens of millions of taxpayer dollars and became a national scandal because of the BigGovernment.com videos, some other videos that examine what has happened to trillions of dollars involving the Federal Reserve have become increasingly popular. These videos, however, don't involve undercover footage. Rather, they show Rep. Alan Grayson trying to pin down government officials at congressional hearings on what has happened to the missing money.
In an exchange captured in a YouTube video, Grayson questioned Fed Vice Chair Donald Kohn about Federal Reserve officials distributing $1.2 trillion dollars since September 2008, without reporting where they lent the money. In another video, Grayson questioned Inspector General of the Federal Reserve Elizabeth Coleman about where the money has gone and whether anyone is overseeing the activities of the Federal Reserve.
While Grayson is a liberal Democrat, he decided to co-sponsor the bill sponsored by Republican Rep. Ron Paul, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act of 2009, which requires an audit of the Federal Reserve System, including its Board of Governors, and the Federal Reserve banks.
Paul had announced on July 15 that all 178 Republican members of the House had signed on as co-sponsors of his Federal Reserve Transparency Act.
The House Committee on Financial Services' hearing on the bill on September 25 also features testimony from Scott Alvarez, General Counsel, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, and comes seven months after the bill was introduced and referred to the committee.
The bill currently has 295 co-sponsors, meaning that 117 Democrats have also endorsed the measure.
On the Senate side, a similar bill, S. 604, sponsored by Sen. Bernie Sanders, has 28 co-sponsors. It was referred to the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs on March 16 but no hearings have been held on the Senate side.
Though introduced by a self-declared socialist, most of the Senate co-sponsors are Republicans, demonstrating that concern about the activities of the Federal Reserve crosses ideological lines.
"The e-mail Bag"
Pull, Buddy, pull
An out-of-towner drove his car into a ditch in a desolated area. Luckily, a local farmer came to help with his big strong horse named Buddy. He hitched Buddy up to the car and yelled, "Pull, Nellie, pull!" Buddy didn't move. Then the farmer hollered, "Pull, Buster, pull!" Buddy didn't respond. Once more the farmer commanded, "Pull, Coco, pull!" Nothing. Then the farmer nonchalantly said, "Pull, Buddy, pull!" And the horse easily dragged the car out of the ditch. The motorist was most appreciative and very curious. He asked the farmer why he called his horse by the wrong name three times. "Well... Buddy is blind and if he thought he was the only one pulling, he wouldn't even try!"
"John Edwards is a seasoned trial lawyer. You think a lawyer would make a good president? You know I look at it this way, if we're going to consistently have liars in the White House, why not get a professional?" — Jay Leno
"An Internet rumor claims that John Kerry had an affair with a young woman. When asked if this was similar to the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal, a spokesman said 'Close, but no cigar.'" — Jimmy Fallon, Saturday Night Live's "Weekend Update"
"Ralph Nader announced he's running for president after a new poll found he'd get .5% of the vote. Nader's slogan: 'Eat my dust Kucinich.'" — Craig Kilborn
Monday, September 28, 2009
Promoting "God's Holy Values and American Freedoms"!
Call Finance Committee Senators today and urge them to support Sen. Hatch amendments to exclude abortion funding & protect conscience rights for health workers.
Senate Abortion Vote Tuesday--Your Call Can Help
Members of the U.S. Senate Financial Services Committee will be voting NEXT TUESDAY on amendments to keep abortion coverage out of Sen. Max Baucus's (D-Mont.) health care bill. Sen. Baucus's health care bill explicitly includes abortion and would subsidize health plans that cover all elective abortions. Such subsidies for abortion goes well beyond the status quo of preventing federal funds either from paying for abortion or subsidizing plans that covers abortion as is prevented under current laws governing Medicaid, the Federal Employee Health Benefits Plan, and the State Children's Health Insurance Plan.
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) has introduced several amendments that would prevent government funding for abortion and would protect current conscience laws for health workers. Please call these key Senators today and urge them to support Sen. Hatch's amendments to keep government funded abortions out of the Baucus bill:
Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.): 202-224-5521
Sen. Thomas Carper (D-Del.): 202-224-2441
Sen. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.): 202-224-2043
Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.): 202-224-4843
Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.): 202-224-5274
Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine): 202-224-5344
NJ School Praises/Teaches Obama Values
In 1999, a child, Elian Gonzalas, of Florida was yanked out of the arms of his relatives by The U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service, as ordered by Attorney General Janet Reno, and returned him to Communist Cuba to rejoin and live with his father http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=11FXW9lrPXI. Elian, his mother and stepfather, trying to escape from Communist Cuba, died in the ocean when their motor boat capsized. Elian and two others survived on inflated tubes http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JlIYkEGcq0o&NR=1.
The video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5zrsl8o4ZPo from B. Bernice Young Elementary School in Burlington, NJ, which we have been viewing for a few days as an indoctorination in a New Jersey school is very much alike to the indoctrination Elian Gonzalas received when he was returned to Fidel Castro’s Communist Cuba http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5540113/ .
This New Jersey school may likely be only one which was caught on video, of perhaps many others across America, which have not been videotaped and released to the media.
In 1963, SCOTUS ordered the Bible readings to be removed from our public schools, attacking the Judeo-Christian values which were used as a tool to teach our children in the public schools. Since that time, radical left-wing Liberals alike to the ACLU’s agenda, has pushed the Supreme Court ruling to the point that children in public schools cannot even sing Christmas carols. It was this SCOTUS decision when our morality values started declining in the public schools. Our Holy Bible teachings “help”, not hinder in a correct direction of life.
Now, many in the NEA want to indoctrinate our children to promote Obama’s Socialistic values, rather than the teachings of our Ten Commandments. How would Liberals in the NEA public schools consider allowing the consequence of any elected Republican Conservative, or any other Conservative Christian leader’s social values to be praised and/or taught to their students?
Oscar Y. Harward
What are some of your brave, beautiful, and brilliant ideas? How do you want to make things better for yourself, your loved ones, your community and the world? What would you do if you ran the world? -- Shelly Rachanow
Encouraging Communication … with a Stick!
Looking for a way to encourage team members to more freely share their ideas and concerns? Like to discover (and learn from) viewpoints that are different from yours? Consider using a “talking stick.”
The talking stick has been used for centuries by many Native American tribes as a means for a just and impartial hearing – allowing all voices to be heard. When used in council circles, it designated who had the right to speak. When matters of great concern came before the council, the leading elder would hold the talking stick and begin. When he finished what he had to say, he would hold out the talking stick, and whoever wanted to speak after him would take it. In this manner the stick was passed from one individual to another until all who wished to speak had done so. The talking stick not only kept order but it also fostered mutual integrity. The holder of the stick was assured free speech, no reprisals, no humiliation and no interruptions. But with the stick also came responsibility. The speakers were charged with speak-ing wisely and truthfully. If they couldn’t do that, they’d be quiet or else bring dishonor to themselves.
Imagine the benefits a “talking stick “could bring to departmental and team meetings. It wouldn’t matter whether you passed a stick, a coffee mug, a ballpoint pen, a wrench, or whatever. What is important is the honoring of mutual integrity as well as the unstated assumption that everyone is seeking to under-stand a much larger perspective. So, give it a try – using these implementation tips:
Identify one or more focus questions to address. Encourage participants to speak freely.
Form an actual circle. This fosters equality and participation.
Introduce the “talking stick” and state the guidelines: Anyone may speak with no interruptions and no humiliation. Only the person holding the stick can talk. Each speaker must be truthful.
When everyone has spoken, summarize what has been said and explain what you will do with the information.
For most people, this will be an experience that seldom happens in corporate life and might very well become a critical retention tool as well as a source for innovation and competitive advantage.
"Daily Devotions" (KJV and/or NLT)
"As the clay is in the potter's hands, so are you in My hand." (Jeremiah 18:6)
God reigns so supremely above His creation that we cannot question any of His actions. As Norman Geisler explains, "If it is a power that you can manipulate, it is not God." Whatever God wants to have happen will happen; His will cannot be thwarted.
Jeremiah reminded God's people of how completely God is in control. Because of their disobedience, they wanted to escape the judgment of the God they had spurned. God sent Jeremiah to the house of a potter. As the potter worked on a piece of clay, he skillfully shaped it with his hands into a beautiful vessel. But when another pot he was making was marred, he tossed it aside and began a new pot. He did what seemed best to him.
Through this illustration, God pointed out His limitless sovereignty. As Creator, God could do whatever He wanted with His creation. No matter how much the clay complained or rebelled, it was shaped by the strong hand of the potter.
God's creative actions set the stage for His sovereignty. He was able to create because He was in absolute control of every particle of material even before He brought it into being. Once He formed something, no matter how simple or complex, He remained in absolute authority.
"The Patriot Post"
"[T]he present Constitution is the standard to which we are to cling. Under its banners, bona fide must we combat our political foes." -- Alexander Hamilton, letter to James Bayard, 1802
"[T]here is a degree of depravity in mankind which requires a certain degree of circumspection and distrust." -- James Madison
"After Acorn workers were caught on tape in three cities allegedly abetting what they believed was a fraudulent-mortgage and sex-trafficking scheme, the Senate has voted overwhelmingly to strip the group of funding in the Transportation/Housing and Urban Development appropriations bill. The amendment, offered by Nebraska Republican Sen. Mike Johanns, passed by an 83-to-7 margin and marked the third time this year that Republicans have tried to block the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now from feeding at the federal trough. Seven Democrats refused to do the right thing. The magnificent seven are Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I.; Bob Casey, D-Pa.; Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y.; both Vermont Democrats, Bernie Sanders and Patrick Leahy, as well as both Illinois Democrats, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin and Roland Burris. This vote comes after the release of three hidden-camera videos showing Acorn housing staff in its Baltimore, Washington and New York offices apparently helping a couple posing as a pimp and a prostitute evade the IRS and apply for an illegal housing loan to set up a brothel. (Insert stimulus joke here.) The Census Bureau immediately severed ties with Acorn, unconcerned that prostitutes and tax evaders might be undercounted in the 2010 census." -- Investor's Business Daily
When the anchor misses the news: "I don't even know about it. So you've got me at a loss, I don't know. ... I know we've done some stories about ACORN before, but this one I don't know about. ... [M]aybe this is just one you leave to the cables." -- ABC News anchor Charlie Gibson
You call that outreach?: "He [Obama] made outreach to his conservative opponents, while also refuting many of their ideas. At times, it was almost like the President were a principal and Congress a bunch of unruly school kids." -- ABC's Jake Tapper on BO's speech last Wednesday
Speaking "truth" to those out of power: "The fallout continues from that extraordinary moment in the United States Congress. Presidents appearing there as respected guests have been interrupted before by boos and hisses, but this was different. A Congressman last [Wednesday] night calling a president an outright liar to his face. Just the latest indication of how ugly the debate over reforming health care has gotten." -- CBS's Katie Couric (Meanwhile, Obama has yet to apologize for calling his opponents liars in the same speech.)
"The insult heard 'round the world. ... Leading off tonight, the gift. When Congressman Joe Wilson shouted, 'You lie!' at President Obama last [Wednesday] night he gave the Democrats a gift they hope just keeps on giving. Wilson was forced -- and that does seem to be the word, forced -- to apologize today. And his Washington office has been mobbed mostly by right-wing supporters. Democrats hope to turn Wilson into the Cindy Sheehan of the anti-health care reform movement. A clownish figure of ridicule who hurts his own side, more than he helps." -- MSNBC's Mike Barnicle
"It's all about race": "I was at some town meetings this summer, most recently in Arkansas. And this is an awful lot about race. You just can't avoid it." -- Time magazine's Joe Klein
"You look at the image of the Republican Party, all white males with short haircuts. They look sort of angry. No women, no minorities, and it looks like they've sort of become unhinged." -- MSNBC's David Shuster on the party that is run by Michael Steele, who is black, and featured a female vice presidential candidate in Sarah Palin
"Now he's at the center of a period of racial turbulence sparked by his ascension. Even if he and the coterie of white male advisers around him don't choose to openly acknowledge it, this president is the ultimate civil rights figure -- a black man whose legitimacy is constantly challenged by a loco fringe." -- New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd, one of many locos at the Times
"Let no man turn aside, ever so slightly, from the broad path of honour, on the plausible pretence that he is justified by the goodness of his end. All good ends can be worked out by good means." -- English novelist Charles Dickens (1812-1870)
"One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors." -- Greek philosopher Plato (c. 428-348 B.C.)
"It is terrible to contemplate how few politicians are hanged." -- English writer G. K. Chesterton (1874-1936)
"Taxpayers deserve to know how ACORN and its vast web of nonprofit, tax-exempt affiliates are using their money (40 percent of the group's revenue comes from the government). The flagship group trains publicly funded ACORN tax advisers and mortgage counselors across the country." -- columnist Michelle Malkin
"Maybe August was simply a long dream (or nightmare, for some politicians). Our leaders spent the month in town hall meetings, hearing from citizens who want nothing to do with government-controlled health care. But with August over, President Barack Obama addressed a joint session of Congress to say, basically, never mind what happened last month. 'Now is the season for action,' Obama declared, in the course of a speech that advanced few new ideas and could pretty much have been written in July, or even January." -- columnist Rich Tucker
"One of the secrets of being a glib talker is not getting hung up over whether what you are saying is true, and instead giving your full attention to what is required by the audience and the circumstances of the moment, without letting facts get in your way and cramp your style. Obama has mastered that art. Con men understand that their job is not to use facts to convince skeptics but to use words to help the gullible to believe what they want to believe. No message has been more welcomed by the gullible, in countries around the world, than the promise of something for nothing. That is the core of Barack Obama's medical care plan." -- economist Thomas Sowell
"Can someone explain to me how President Barack Obama's grandiose scheme destined to reduce the quality of the best health care system in the history of the world, force millions of people who choose not to purchase health insurance to purchase it, greatly increase medical costs, our deficits and national debt, ultimately reduce patient choice, and place health care decisions in the hands of heartless bureaucrats is somehow a demonstration of compassion?" -- columnist David Limbaugh
"The president claims he has 'no interest in putting insurance companies out of business,' but that is exactly what will happen if the government forces them to expand the services they cover while simultaneously preventing them from charging higher fees, especially if the expanded pool of beneficiaries includes many of the least healthy individuals. ..... The president is beginning to sound like one of those late-night TV ad pitchmen. But no matter how many times he tries to repackage his product or promises the whole thing comes free, Americans aren't buying what he has to sell." -- columnist Linda Chavez
"No stream or gas drives anything until it is confined. No Niagara is ever turned into light and power until it is tunneled. No life ever grows great until it is focused, dedicated and disciplined." -- Harry E. Fosdick
"9-12" --- A Picture To View Of Taxpayers In Washington
All of those in the White House and on Capitol Hill must take notice that Americans are awakening that the appointive and legislative radical Liberal agenda must, and will be, turned around. - oyh
AFR TALK LIVE!
Ensign receives handwritten confirmation
This doesn't happen often enough.
By Carrie Budoff Brown
Sen. John Ensign (R-Nev.) received a handwritten note Thursday from Joint Committee on Taxation Chief of Staff Tom Barthold confirming the penalty for failing to pay the up to $1,900 fee for not buying health insurance.
Violators could be charged with a misdemeanor and could face up to a year in jail or a $25,000 penalty, Barthold wrote on JCT letterhead. He signed it "Sincerely, Thomas A. Barthold."
The note was a follow-up to Ensign's questioning at the markup.
Poll: 77% of OK highschoolers can't name the first president
Elijah Friedeman, the Millennial Perspective
In a study commissioned by the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs, high school students were asked questions about basic U.S. history and about the structure of our government.
The questions were taken from the test that immigrants must take to become U.S. citizens. You must answer six out of ten questions right to pass the test. According to immigration services, 92% of immigrants pass on the first try. Only 3% of Oklahoma high school students would have passed the test according to the poll.
The statistics are quite shocking. Only 29% of the students could correctly answer who was in charge of the executive branch. Ninety-percent didn’t know how many Supreme Court justices there are. Most shocking, though, is the fact that 77% of the students could not name our first president.
It’s easy to bash the study results, but I don’t think this is only a problem in Oklahoma. I imagine if you conducted similar polls across the nation, the results would be much the same.
Listed below are the ten questions that were asked along with the percentage of students who answer correctly.
What is the supreme law of the land? 28%
What do we call the first ten amendments to the Constitution? 26%
What are the two parts of the U.S. Congress? 27%
How many justices are there on the Supreme Court? 10%
Who wrote the Declaration of Independence? 14%
What ocean is on the east coast of the United States? 61%
What are the two major political parties in the United States? 43%
We elect a U.S. senator for how many years? 11%
Who was the first President of the United States? 23%
Who is in charge of the executive branch? 29%
Administration giving $400K to Qaddafi Family Foundations
NRO's Andy McCarthy reports that the Administration has notified Congress that the Department of State intends to give $400K to Foundations run by members of the Qaddafi family including the son who escorted the freed Lockerbie bomber back to a hero's welcome in Libya:
The Obama administration has notified Congress of the State Department's intention to contribute $400,000 to foundations run by Muammar Qaddafi's two children — $200,000 each for daughter Aisha and son Saif. Saif, you may recall, is the son who escorted the Lockerbie terrorist Abdel Baset al-Megrahi home to a hero's welcome in Libya after President Obama sternly "warned" Qaddafi that there was to be no hero's welcome.
Illinois Republican congressman Mark Steven Kirk (House Appropriations Subcommittee on State/Foreign Operations) has sent Obama a letter asking him to rescind the funding.
Could somebody please tell this president that this is not just Annenberg Foundation cash he's passing out to his personal terrorist pals like Bill Ayers but American taxpayer dollars he's doling out to the terrorist tyrant behind the murder — in just that one incident — of 270 people, including 189 Americans.
Just 40 months to go. God help us.
ACORN Funded Political, For-Profit Efforts, Data Show
Actions Were Before Leadership Change
By Carol D. Leonnig
Washington Post Staff Writer
Documents released by a Senate Republican on Thursday show that leaders of the ACORN community organizing network transferred several million dollars in charitable and government money meant for the poor to arms of the group that have political and sometimes profit-making missions.
ACORN's tax-exempt groups and allied organizations, long a target of conservative ire, used more than half their charitable and public money in 2006 to pay other ACORN affiliates, according to an analysis by the tax staff of Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa).
On Thursday, Grassley called the transactions a "big shell game" and said ACORN donors may be surprised by how the liberal group known for helping the poor obtain housing and health care was spending their money. He urged the Internal Revenue Service to take a closer look.
According to the Grassley report, charities "are being used to raise monies which are then funneled to other charities or to other organizations for purposes other than what the donor may have intended. . . . Dollars raised for charitable [purposes] appear to be used for impermissible lobbing and political activity."
ACORN officials, recently embarrassed by a video sting that showed counselors providing assistance to people posing as a pimp and a prostitute, said Grassley's accusations are based on financial transactions that occurred before a leadership shakeup last year. Bertha Lewis took over after co-founder and longtime director Wade Rathke was pushed to resign over his role in concealing from the full board his brother's embezzlement of ACORN money. Lewis said she has shut down dozens of affiliates.
"Senator Grassley made up his mind, and he didn't bother about the facts," Lewis said in an interview. "He's dealing with a lot of outdated information and decided to frame it with a predetermined conclusion. Yes, we had problems under Wade Rathke. . . . And we have been overhauling how we do things ever since."
Also on Thursday, Grassley requested that ACORN, which stands for the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, be taken off a list of approved charities for federal employees to donate to in an annual giving campaign.
The senator's staff members began looking into the organization's tax status in late 2006 as part of his interest in more oversight of charitable groups. They finished much of their analysis in fall 2008, and it is based largely on 2006 financial transactions. The most recent data available cover transactions in 2007.
Project Vote, one of the most recognized organizations in the ACORN family, took in $8.6 million in 2006 but paid more than 60 percent of that -- $5.4 million -- to two groups then controlled by Rathke. About $4.6 million went to ACORN for "contractual and campaign services" and $779,000 went to Citizens Consulting Inc., which charged ACORN affiliates on a percentage basis for bookkeeping services.
Lewis said the organization lacked transparency under Rathke's leadership, and the board has been working to open up its operations and make sure that money transfers between its groups are well documented.
"What you will see since I took over is a complete overhaul of how everything is coded . . . to make sure that if monies are meant for one thing, they are documented and used for that purpose," she said.
Kerry asks $20m for Kennedy institute
Fiscal groups criticize military bill earmark
What a "SCAM"? Is this just another common example of the majority Democrats on Capitol Hill hiding/stealing and/or misappropriations of $20 million of taxpayers' money to honor a fellow Democrat; and all of this happening during a period of economic stress? America must remember these rogue misappropriations of taxpayers' funds. - oyh
By Bryan Bender
WASHINGTON - A large military spending bill moving through Congress contains a little-noticed outlay for Boston that has nothing to do with national defense: $20 million for an educational institute honoring late Senator Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts.
The earmark, tucked into the defense bill at the request of Senator John F. Kerry of Massachusetts, requires US taxpayers to help the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate realize its goal of building a repository for Kennedy’s papers and an accompanying civic learning center on the University of Massachusetts at Boston campus in Dorchester, next to the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum.
The item is drawing fire from fiscal watchdog groups, who assert that military funds should not be raided to pay for an institution that has nothing to do with improving military readiness.
“Whatever beneficial value civic education may have, it’s hard to see why the Defense Department should pay for it,’’ said Laura Peterson, a senior policy analyst at the nonpartisan Taxpayers for Common Sense in Washington. “It would seem the location of this hefty earmark has more to do with the powerful position of its sponsor than [the Defense Department’s] responsibility to educate elementary school children.’’
Kerry strongly defended the insertion of the $20 million earmark yesterday. He requested that it be included in the $360 billion defense budget, he said, to recognize Kennedy’s long tenure on the Senate Armed Services Committee.
The institute will serve as a focal point for the late Massachusetts senator’s legacy, much as presidential libraries do. It will house Kennedy’s official papers and oral histories from the nearly half-century he served in the Senate. With a museum and exhibit space, it also will be dedicated to educating the general public, students, teachers, new US senators, and Senate staff about the role and importance of the Senate in American political life. The institute plans to host an annual “Summer Senate’’ for high school students from across the nation.
The $20 million earmark would cover as much as 40 percent of the institute’s initial fund-raising goal.
Beyond raising questions about the practice of slipping earmarks into bills in Congress, the provision also presents a potential ethical question for Paul Kirk, the longtime Kennedy aide Governor Deval Patrick appointed to fill the late senator’s seat yesterday.
Kirk, who stepped down yesterday as chairman of the JFK Library Foundation, has also served as a member of the Edward M. Kennedy Institute board and has played a key role in helping plan and raise funds for the new center. If he casts a vote in favor of the defense bill, he also will be voting in favor of an institute to which he has had close personal and professional connections.
A spokeswoman for Kirk, Stephanie Cutter, said yesterday that he does not see his roles as conflicting.
“Mr. Kirk expects to vote on every issue important to the people of Massachusetts. He resigned from the Edward M. Kennedy Institute board at 8 a.m. this morning, so we don’t expect a conflict to exist, but of course he’ll comply fully with the ethics rules of the Senate,’’ Cutter said in an e-mailed statement. She did not respond to a question about what role, if any, he played in securing the $20 million earmark.
Kirk is not running in the January special election for a new senator to fill out the remainder of Kennedy’s term. He has not yet said whether he intends to return to the JFK Library Foundation once his interim Senate appointment expires.
At Kerry’s request, Senator Daniel Inouye, a Hawaii Democrat who chairs the Senate Appropriations Committee, added the $20 million earmark to the defense bill, congressional aides said. The funding would come on top of $5 million secured with Kerry’s help earlier this year in a Labor Department spending bill, which provided money for the institute’s planning and design.
The center had raised an additional $20 million in private donations earlier this year, and more money has been contributed by members of the public since Kennedy’s death last month from brain cancer, said Joe Ganley, an institute spokesman. Ultimately, Ganley said, the majority of the center’s funding will come from private donors, not taxpayers. He said many of Boston’s most influential civic leaders, including businessman Jack Connors, are helping to raise funds.
The institute’s president, and it’s only staff member so far, is Peter Meade, a former Blue Cross-Blue Shield executive who also serves on the board of the JFK Library Foundation. Meade was unavailable for comment yesterday, Ganley said.
Using the national defense budget for such earmarks is considered a particular affront by those advocating for fiscal discipline in the midst of two wars that are straining Pentagon coffers. Overall, the Senate version of the bill includes 778 earmarks worth $2.65 billion, including a number that have little or nothing to do with military matters.
A major concern is what gets cut from the Pentagon budget to make room for things like the Kennedy institute, said Winslow Wheeler, director of the Strauss Military Reform Project at the left-leaning Center for Defense Information in Washington.
“The committee did not add money to the bill to pay for its billions of dollars in pork,’’ Wheeler said.
A spokesman for Inouye declined to explain why the Kennedy institute earmark was inserted into the Pentagon budget, rather than into an education bill or other piece of legislation. In a statement released by his office, Inouye said, “It is my sincere hope that many of these students will be inspired to seek a life of public service, with the same spirit of patriotism and love of country that I saw each and every day from Senator Kennedy.’’
While Kerry said using the defense budget to fund Kennedy’s institute was a tribute to his “leadership on military technology, weapons systems, and safety equipment for our troops,’’ Wheeler said he believes there is a more practical reason.
“It’s a natural for Kerry to go to Inouye on this,’’ Wheeler said. “If it’s in the defense bill it must be a good idea. And the defense bill is sure to pass. He wanted a fast vehicle to get it enacted.’’
10 out of 10 Dictators Love Barack Obama
When tinpot despots and dictators are singing your praises, you know you’re in trouble. When you cozy up to these same oppressive tyrants, it’s time for you to go. Is there a current “president” of the United States that comes to mind when you read those two statements? I’m not saying who it is, but his initials are Barack Hussein Obama.
Libya's Moammar Kadafi gives U.N. his opinions on Obama -- and more
He praises Obama, saying the U.S. should make him president for life. In a rambling speech, he also criticizes the Security Council and says the U.N. should move outside the U.S.
By Tina SusmanReporting from The United Nations
Libyan leader Moammar Kadafi had a lot to gripe about: He was jet-lagged. There was no comfortable place to plant his tent. Some of the diplomats on the floor of the U.N. General Assembly were distracted.
"Please pay attention!" he said at one point Wednesday during his more than 90-minute speech, his first at the General Assembly.
Nevertheless, Kadafi offered a virtual valentine to none other than President Obama, his predecessor on the podium, praising him as a glimmer of hope for the next few years and suggesting that he take a cue from Libya and become president-for-life.
"We are content and happy if Obama can stay forever as the president of the United States," said Kadafi, Libya's leader since a military coup in 1969.
Obama wasn't in the room to receive the diplomatic kiss; he had left the hall after his own speech, as had Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice.
Kadafi's 40 years of one-man control has put him at odds with U.S. leadership, which only recently -- in 2007 -- removed Libya from its list of state sponsors of terrorism.
Lately, Kadafi has presided over a hero's welcome marking the return to Tripoli of a Libyan agent convicted in the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, which killed 270 people, and watched Western governments that once vilified him beat a path to his door in search of oil contracts. Once a pariah, Kadafi fulfilled a long-anticipated coming-out on the global stage with his U.N. speech.
Dressed in a flowing, coffee-colored cloak with a black pin of Africa sparkling on its front, he did not mention the release of Abdel Basset Ali Megrahi from a Scottish prison last month in a speech that veered from harsh denunciations of the U.S.-led Iraq invasion -- the "mother of all evils" -- to the praise for Obama.
"We Africans are happy, proud that a son of Africa governs the United States of America," said Kadafi, calling Obama's U.N. speech appealing for global unity "completely different." "We applaud that."
But he expressed fear that when Obama's presidency ends, the world could go "back to square one" if the wrong leader replaces him.
Elliott Abrams of the Council on Foreign Relations, who served as deputy national security advisor for the Middle East and North Africa under the Bush administration, said it wasn't unusual for Kadafi to personalize relationships with world leaders even when trashing their policies.
"It's not surprising that he thinks it normal to adore Obama while assaulting America," Abrams said.
Kadafi denounced the abuse of Iraqi detainees in the Abu Ghraib prison, condemned the U.N. Security Council as an elitist group dominated by superpowers with no respect for smaller countries, and criticized the U.S. interventions in Afghanistan and Somalia.
"There was a civil war in America. No one interfered," said Kadafi, who at one point tossed some of his notes over his shoulder.
Speakers are encouraged to keep their addresses relatively short -- 15 minutes or so -- but they rarely do, and there is no system for removing those who go long. Among other things, Kadafi called for new investigations of the killings of John F. Kennedy, Lee Harvey Oswald, Martin Luther King Jr. and a host of others.
Kadafi's address fell far short of the record held by Cuban leader Fidel Castro, who spoke for nearly 4 1/2 hours in 1960.
Like his speech, Kadafi's visit to New York has been stormy. His plan to pitch a large Bedouin tent on a Libyan-owned estate in New Jersey was quashed when area residents and state officials objected. On Wednesday, residents of the New York suburb of Bedford, about 40 miles north of Manhattan, objected to the tent being erected on property there. According to the Associated Press, the Libyan mission also asked to pitch the tent in Central Park.
Eventually, the AP said, he was housed at the Libyan diplomatic mission.
Wherever Kadafi slept, he didn't get enough.
"I'm jet-lagged," he said to the General Assembly, complaining that he had been awake since 4 a.m. and demanding that the U.N. be moved out of the United States, whose security measures are like "being a prisoner in the Guantanamo camp, where there is no free movement."
Not only would a move relieve the pressure on the United States to safeguard hundreds of heads of state and their delegates, it would make it far easier for people having to travel across time zones to reach the U.N., he said.
"This place is a target," Kadafi said. "Perhaps America will be targeted by a rocket. We want to relieve America of this worry."
"The e-mail Bag"
The latest telephone poll taken by the California Governor's office asked whether people who live in California think illegal immigration is a serious problem:
19% responded, "Yes, it is a serious problem."
81% responded, "No es una problema seriosa."
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Almost every time I sneeze, cough or laugh, either my radiator leaks or my exhaust backfires.
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