Archive for March, 2010
In Georgia, we have smart politicians…
It had been rumored for a week and on Tuesday some State House Republicans made it official.
Thirty of them signed onto HR 1886, a House Resolution calling for the impeachment of Georgia Attorney General Thurbert Baker.
“The Attorney General has an obligation to file suit when requested to do so by the Governor,” said Rep. Mark Hatfield (R-Waycross), who authored the measure and submitted it to the House on Tuesday.
Hatfield and his 29 GOP allies want Baker removed from office because they claim he violated the Georgia Constitution.
Specifically, Article V, Section III which says, “The Attorney General…shall represent the state…when required by the Governor.”
The Georgia State Constitution, Article V, Section III, Paragraph IV clearly states,
Attorney General; duties. The Attorney General shall act as the legal advisor of the executive department, shall represent the state in the Supreme Court in all capital felonies and in all civil and criminal cases in any court when required by the Governor, and shall perform such other duties as shall be required by law.
The state Constitution is quite clear. Georgia Attorney General Thurbert Baker took his oath of office and has a legal obligation to represent the state of Georgia at the direction of the Governor. He refuses to do so, therefore he is not performing his duties as defined by the state Constitution. It’s really that simple. Of course, legislators will muck it all up because some of them won’t pay attention to the law and they will vote against his impeachment.
Yes, believe it or not, even though we have some very smart politicians, we also have a few really, really, stupid ones…
Yes. Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) who replaced the nutcase known as Cynthia McKinney actually thinks an island (Guam) could actually tip over. TIP OVER. What a freakin’ moron.
I have some rather exciting news to share.
Back in February, after I had posted my family’s experience with the Ivory Gull that was spotted at West Point Lake, I was approached about publishing my story in the quarterly newsletter for the Georgia Ornithological Society.
I was tasked with trimming the article down so it could fit better in the newsletter, and I tell you what. Editing your own work, in the name of space, is much more difficult than I thought it would be. In the end, I was able to trim it enough while keeping the mail feel of the article. Two of my photographs were published as well, one of which was the photo of the gull “praying” against the tree.
To say I am excited is an understatement, but I also feel quite honored. The boys and I haven’t been birding very long, but thanks to the few people we’ve met from the GOS, we are well on our way to being lifelong birders.
Heck, a year ago I couldn’t have told you what a Blue-Winged Teal was, but now I can spot them from quite a distance. Of course, a year ago I didn’t have a good spotting scope either. ;)
The boys have designed, built, and done all the work to establish a bird sanctuary in our backyard. I will be posting photos and such soon.
As I said the other night, I was busy with a project.
Last Friday, after an organizational meeting for the Douglas County TEA Party, I began production of a new website for the organization. At 11:00 pm this evening, I put the finishing touches on it, and put it live.
You can view it at www.douglascountyteaparty.com.
I need to acknowledge all of the hard work that the organizers of the Douglas County TEA Party have done. The upcoming TEA Party will be the best one yet, so you might want to keep June 4th free on your calendar.
In a world where most people used to care less about what’s happening in Washington, let alone right outside their own door, I have to thank President Obama, Speaker of the House Nanny State Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader Scary Harry Reid for awakening Americans across this great nation. If it wasn’t for their insane economic and political policies, people would still be oblivious to what’s happening around them.
Now that they are awakening it’s our job, as fellow citizens of this country, to educate and inform them. It’s time we all stand up and say “ENOUGH!” It’s time to stop the spending. It’s time to stop increasing the role of the government. It’s time to stop trampling the Constitution. Enough is enough!
I’m working on a quick, but very important, project tonight, so I am going to post Sarah Palin’s speech from Searchlight, Nevada yesterday.
I was born in Las Vegas, and I spent the first 18 years of my life living “just over the hill” from Harry Reid’s hometown.
Tonight, for the first time in over a decade, I wish I was there. I wish I was there for that TEA Party rally.
Speaking of TEA Parties, did you hear? Something’s brewing in Douglas County, Georgia.
Obama says if we want to repeal ObamaCare, we should go for it. He better be careful. He may just get what he asked for.
During the 2008 campaign, Barack Obama made a pledge not to increase taxes on any households earning less than $250,000.
“I can make a firm pledge. Under my plan, no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increases,” the Illinois senator told a crowd in Dover, N.H. on Sept. 12, 2008. “Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes.”
During his address to the joint session of Congress in February of 2009, he repeated his pledge.
“If your family earns less than $250,000 a year, you will not see your taxes increased a single dime. I repeat: not a single dime,” the president said.
He lied again. How many times has he lied? Let’s count the ways (just with the health care bill).
All legal U.S. residents will be required to purchase health care beginning in 2014. The plan will require a single person to pay 2.5% of their income or $695 if they don’t purchase health care. If you make more than $30,000 you pay the 2.5%, if you make less, you pay $695. Either way, it’s an additional “health care” tax you were not paying before.
Businesses will be required to provide health care to all employees (even part-time) even if their revenues are below $250,000 per year. If the business does not provide the insurance, they will pay a tax of $750 per employee.
My wife runs her own business. I run my own business, together we will be paying much more than we were before this crap from ObamaCare hit the proverbial fan.
The old rules for HSA (health savings accounts) and FSA (flexible spending accounts) will no longer apply. Americans could use pre-tax dollars from those accounts for over the counter medicines. They will not be allowed any longer, which adds additional taxes to their income.
I could go on all day with each of the new taxes. It turns out there are more than a dozen of them, but then again, if you read the bill you already knew that.
It’s about time someone told this guy to take a hike.
Dozens of TEA Party organizations have denounced his candidacy as a fraud. He is not associated with any of those organizations in the state of Nevada, yet he is running as the “tea party candidate”.
My only guess is he’s into sipping tea from dainty little cups. If not, then he’s nothing more than a big fat liar.
Speaking of liars, did you know that the new health care bill will cost businesses billions of dollars in additional health care costs and result in the layoffs of more and more people as their employers become aware of the costs they will incur.
While 40 different states have some sort of legislation in the works to overturn ObamaCare, some people are still trying to convince us that the health care bill was passed for “good reasons”.
The mandate’s defenders say Congress is exercising its power to “regulate commerce…among the several states.” Yet a law that compels people to engage in an intrastate transaction plainly does not fit within the original understanding of the Commerce Clause, which was aimed at facilitating the interstate exchange of goods by removing internal trade barriers.
Of course, not everyone is drinking the kool-aid. In fact, roughly 70% of the American people are refusing to drink the kool-aid.
Yet this is the logic of the health insurance mandate, an unprecedented attempt to punish people for the offense of living in the United States without buying something the federal government thinks they should have. Don’t buy it.
Then again, if you are one of the 30% or so that is happy with the health-care bill, take a moment to bask in the knowledge that you are one with Fidel Castro.
We consider health reform to have been an important battle and a success of his (Obama’s) government…
But even Fidel Castro doesn’t get it.
Cuba provides free health care and education to all its citizens, and heavily subsidizes food, housing, utilities and transportation, policies that have earned it global praise. The government has warned that some of those benefits are no longer sustainable given Cuba’s ever-struggling economy, though it has so far not made major changes.
In recent speeches, Raul Castro has singled out medicine as an area where the government needs to be spending less, but he has not elaborated.
Universal health care. Unsustainable costs. Imagine that. You wanted change, America. You got it.
We found ourselves in North Georgia today, so we did some birding along the way. We ran into Darlene Moore up in Taylorsville looking for the American Golden Plovers. The plovers eluded us for two days, but we’ll catch up with them soon.
Later in the day we ran into Joshua Spence as we arrived at Carter’s Lake. It was nice meeting him, and we look forward to birding with him sometime in the future.
Here are a couple photos of some birds we saw.
Chances are we’ll be heading back up to Carter’s Lake again soon. There is so much to see up there, and it’s so quiet that it makes a nice quick getaway with the family.
The passage of the health-care bill signaled a change in our country. No longer are we the free people we were just a couple days ago.
Under this new plan you will be forced to carry health insurance or face a fine. You will be required to pay specific amounts for that health care. The amount you pay will be determined by the IRS based on your income. If you don’t purchase a government approved health-care plan, you will be fined and/or go to jail.
Never before in our country’s history have the American people been forced to purchase any product, be it food, clothing, insurance, or otherwise. Some people are using the “you are required to purchase auto insurance aren’t you” argument, but that doesn’t fly. Laws concerning auto insurance are state laws, not federal laws. Under the 10th Amendment to the Constitution, the federal government does not possess the authority to do this.
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
Health-care for everyone may sound good, but forced health-care insurance is unconstitutional at the very basic level in the Bill Of Rights.
There are a lot more issues with ObamaCare than the unconstitutionality of it, and I’ll discuss some of those over the coming week or so. For today, here are some more links about the bill.
Tomorrow is another day, and I am sure there will be 1,000 more reasons why ObamaCare will never be enacted.
Well, there you have it. 219 Democrats have made an all-out assault on our Constitution. As you know by now, the health-care bill has passed.
Since most of you still don’t know exactly what’s in the bill, why not review these 20 ways that ObamaCare will take away our freedoms. These are so important I am quoting the entire list here.
1. You are young and don’t want health insurance? You are starting up a small business and need to minimize expenses, and one way to do that is to forego health insurance? Tough. You have to pay $750 annually for the “privilege.” (Section 1501)
2. You are young and healthy and want to pay for insurance that reflects that status? Tough. You’ll have to pay for premiums that cover not only you, but also the guy who smokes three packs a day, drink a gallon of whiskey and eats chicken fat off the floor. That’s because insurance companies will no longer be able to underwrite on the basis of a person’s health status. (Section 2701).
3. You would like to pay less in premiums by buying insurance with lifetime or annual limits on coverage? Tough. Health insurers will no longer be able to offer such policies, even if that is what customers prefer. (Section 2711).
4. Think you’d like a policy that is cheaper because it doesn’t cover preventive care or requires cost-sharing for such care? Tough. Health insurers will no longer be able to offer policies that do not cover preventive services or offer them with cost-sharing, even if that’s what the customer wants. (Section 2712).
5. You are an employer and you would like to offer coverage that doesn’t allow your employees’ slacker children to stay on the policy until age 26? Tough. (Section 2714).
6. You must buy a policy that covers ambulatory patient services, emergency services, hospitalization, maternity and newborn care, mental health and substance use disorder services, including behavioral health treatment; prescription drugs; rehabilitative and habilitative services and devices; laboratory services; preventive and wellness services; chronic disease management; and pediatric services, including oral and vision care.
You’re a single guy without children? Tough, your policy must cover pediatric services. You’re a woman who can’t have children? Tough, your policy must cover maternity services. You’re a teetotaler? Tough, your policy must cover substance abuse treatment. (Add your own violation of personal freedom here.) (Section 1302).
7. Do you want a plan with lots of cost-sharing and low premiums? Well, the best you can do is a “Bronze plan,” which has benefits that provide benefits that are actuarially equivalent to 60% of the full actuarial value of the benefits provided under the plan. Anything lower than that, tough. (Section 1302 (d) (1) (A))
8. You are an employer in the small-group insurance market and you’d like to offer policies with deductibles higher than $2,000 for individuals and $4,000 for families? Tough. (Section 1302 (c) (2) (A).
9. If you are a large employer (defined as at least 50 employees) and you do not want to provide health insurance to your employee, then you will pay a $750 fine per employee (It could be $2,000 to $3,000 under the reconciliation changes). Think you know how to better spend that money? Tough. (Section 1513).
10. You are an employer who offers health flexible spending arrangements and your employees want to deduct more than $2,500 from their salaries for it? Sorry, can’t do that. (Section 9005 (i)).
11. If you are a physician and you don’t want the government looking over your shoulder? Tough. The Secretary of Health and Human Services is authorized to use your claims data to issue you reports that measure the resources you use, provide information on the quality of care you provide, and compare the resources you use to those used by other physicians. Of course, this will all be just for informational purposes. It’s not like the government will ever use it to intervene in your practice and patients’ care. Of course not. (Section 3003 (i))
12. If you are a physician and you want to own your own hospital, you must be an owner and have a “Medicare provider agreement” by Feb. 1, 2010. (Dec. 31, 2010 in the reconciliation changes.) If you didn’t have those by then, you are out of luck. (Section 6001 (i) (1) (A))
13. If you are a physician owner and you want to expand your hospital? Well, you can’t (Section 6001 (i) (1) (B). Unless, it is located in a county where, over the last five years, population growth has been 150% of what it has been in the state (Section 6601 (i) (3) ( E)). And then you cannot increase your capacity by more than 200% (Section 6001 (i) (3) (C)).
14. You are a health insurer and you want to raise premiums to meet costs? Well, if that increase is deemed “unreasonable” by the Secretary of Health and Human Services it will be subject to review and can be denied. (Section 1003)
15. The government will extract a fee of $2.3 billion annually from the pharmaceutical industry. If you are a pharmaceutical company what you will pay depends on the ratio of the number of brand-name drugs you sell to the total number of brand-name drugs sold in the U.S. So, if you sell 10% of the brand-name drugs in the U.S., what you pay will be 10% multiplied by $2.3 billion, or $230,000,000. (Under reconciliation, it starts at $2.55 billion, jumps to $3 billion in 2012, then to $3.5 billion in 2017 and $4.2 billion in 2018, before settling at $2.8 billion in 2019 (Section 1404)). Think you, as a pharmaceutical executive, know how to better use that money, say for research and development? Tough. (Section 9008 (b)).
16. The government will extract a fee of $2 billion annually from medical device makers. If you are a medical device maker what you will pay depends on your share of medical device sales in the U.S. So, if you sell 10% of the medical devices in the U.S., what you pay will be 10% multiplied by $2 billion, or $200,000,000. Think you, as a medical device maker, know how to better use that money, say for R&D? Tough. (Section 9009 (b)).
The reconciliation package turns that into a 2.9% excise tax for medical device makers. Think you, as a medical device maker, know how to better use that money, say for research and development? Tough. (Section 1405).
17. The government will extract a fee of $6.7 billion annually from insurance companies. If you are an insurer, what you will pay depends on your share of net premiums plus 200% of your administrative costs. So, if your net premiums and administrative costs are equal to 10% of the total, you will pay 10% of $6.7 billion, or $670,000,000. In the reconciliation bill, the fee will start at $8 billion in 2014, $11.3 billion in 2015, $1.9 billion in 2017, and $14.3 billion in 2018 (Section 1406).Think you, as an insurance executive, know how to better spend that money? Tough.(Section 9010 (b) (1) (A and B).)
18. If an insurance company board or its stockholders think the CEO is worth more than $500,000 in deferred compensation? Tough.(Section 9014).
19. You will have to pay an additional 0.5% payroll tax on any dollar you make over $250,000 if you file a joint return and $200,000 if you file an individual return. What? You think you know how to spend the money you earned better than the government? Tough. (Section 9015).
That amount will rise to a 3.8% tax if reconciliation passes. It will also apply to investment income, estates, and trusts. You think you know how to spend the money you earned better than the government? Like you need to ask. (Section 1402).
20. If you go for cosmetic surgery, you will pay an additional 5% tax on the cost of the procedure. Think you know how to spend that money you earned better than the government? Tough. (Section 9017).
I am sick to my stomach thinking of everything that will transpire because of the passing of this bill.