Another Speech, Another Lie

Once again, President Barack Obama opened his mouth and couldn’t tell the truth. I know that truth telling is sometimes difficult for many politicians, but it seems to be an impossibility with our current President and his administration.

The first non-truth comes in the first paragraph of the following article.

US President Barack Obama lamented Sunday that in the iPad and Xbox era, information had become a diversion that was imposing new strains on democracy, in his latest critique of modern media.

Obama, who often chides journalists and cable news outlets for obsessing with political horse race coverage rather than serious issues, told a class of graduating university students that education was the key to progress.

Information does not impose new strains on democracy. If you believe that information is dangerous then you probably also believe that guns kill people. Information is no more dangerous to society than spoons are responsible for making people obese.

While the Internet has provided a wide array of information sources, one cannot claim that the access to that information alone is a danger to democracy. Unless of course, you are trying to persuade people to think only some sources of information (such as Fox News or conservative talk radio) might be dangerous. Then again, educated people wouldn’t make that mistake and would know that President Obama’s claim itself is a danger to democracy.

President Obama says that education is the key to progress but then tries to persuade those listening that they might be duped into believing some information sources that might not rank too high on the truth meter. So much for that education factor, eh?

“You’re coming of age in a 24/7 media environment that bombards us with all kinds of content and exposes us to all kinds of arguments, some of which don’t always rank all that high on the truth meter,” Obama said at Hampton University, Virginia.

If anyone knows about the media’s ability to expose us to all kinds of arguments that don’t rank too high on the truth meter, it’s President Obama. His entire campaign was based on social media popularity and the complete manipulation of our mainstream media outlets.

Don’t you find it odd that candidate Barack Obama used the media to make people believe what he wanted them to believe but now President Barack Obama wants you to think those same media outlets cannot always be truthful or taken seriously?

In fact, the only outlet I know of, which has been consistent in spreading outright lies and misleading facts, is the Obama administration.

Take the following statement for example:

“With iPods and iPads and Xboxes and PlayStations, — none of which I know how to work — information becomes a distraction, a diversion, a form of entertainment, rather than a tool of empowerment, rather than the means of emancipation,” Obama said.

President Obama wants you to believe he does not know how to operate an iPod. Yet, here he is with an iPod strapped to his side.

 

Let’t not forget the fact that he also gave Queen Elizabeth an iPod loaded with music as a gift too.

Talk about information that doesn’t rank too high on the truth meter. Great job, Mr. Obama!

You Can’t Buy Ethics

I apologize, once again, for the length of this post but sometimes you just need to get something off your chest. This will be my final word on this subject, but I won’t promise this is my final long post.

I had an interesting conversation via instant messenger with Josh Schnell this evening. It turns out, he felt I was the one being unethical for suspending his accounts when he has paid for service through April 3rd. It was the first I heard from him since our conversation during the evening of January 12th, when he led me to believe his account(s) had been hacked.

Before I get to this evening’s conversation, let’s review the events of January 12th and 13th, some of which I wrote about in my post “A Complete Lack Of Ethics“.

  • January 12 – 20:50 : I received a direct message from him asking what was up with the server, that DNS was not working, and that his account alpha-one was not receiving email.
  • January 12 – 21:17 : I received an email from PayPal notifying me that his hosting subscription had been cancelled.
  • January 12 – 21:28 : He told me that alpha one was not loading and mail was not being forwarded to Google mail.
  • January 12 – 21:30 : I check the WHOIS for his domain to find his name servers (DNS) has changed to editdns.net and I let him know.
  • January 12 – 21:31 : He says, WTF. He acted shocked that the name servers had been changed.
  • January 12 – 21:36 : He leads me to believe that his account has possibly been hacked, and that he is “looking into it” with his registrar
  • January 12 – 21:47 : I let him know about the email notification of his account cancellation. He says, WTF, WTF, WTF, leading me to believe (again) that his account has indeed been hacked.
  • January 12 – 22:00 : I spend the next five hours checking server logs, comparing IP addresses, looking for signs of “the hackers”.
  • January 13 – 09:00 : I notify server techs on my end asking them to make sure everything on my server is secure.
  • January 13 – 11:00 : I happen to check WHOIS on his domain again to find it sitting at another hosting provider and different name servers than the night before.
  • January 13 – 14:45 : Server techs reply that there has been no apparent breach, all services are running fine, everything looks good on the server, but his passwords “could” have been compromised.
  • January 13 – 15:00 : Because I did not hear from him and he was not online, I decide to suspend all his accounts to cut off all external access to his accounts until I hear from him.
  • January 13 – 15:45 : I run a WHOIS query on each of his domains to see if the “hack” is widespread” and discover that almost all of his domains were transferred to the new hosting provider.
  • January 13 – 16:00 : I finish loading each of his domains in my web browser to find most of them are functioning properly, from the new hosting server. This raised the question, why would someone hack his DNS just to put up his own sites?
  • January 13 – 17:00 : After reviewing all of the WHOIS data which show the dates the registration information was last updated, I realize most of the accounts were moved over the course of the past month. At this point I realize I had been made a fool of.

I sent him two emails between 14:00 and 17:00 with no response. He was not online on the instant messenger, so I took action to protect his interests, as well as mine. Yet, tonight he claims I am the unethical one.

Six hours on Tuesday and eight hours on Wednesday were wasted looking for a “hacker” when in reality all I was dealing with was a liar. I’m the unethical one? Please. I was simply doing what I should have been doing to protect my server and my customers.

Before I begin discussing tonight’s conversation (which sheds even more light on the subject), let me be clear about a few items:

  1. I am not angry that he decided to switch hosting providers. I am angry that he played me for a fool by lying to me and wasting 14 hours of my time.
  2. I suspended his accounts because he led me to believe he had been hacked, and because he wasn’t online and didn’t respond to the emails I sent him, I did what I needed to do to protect the server.
  3. I have more respect for hackers than liars.

Now that we’re clear about the events on Tuesday and Wednesday, let’s discuss this evening’s conversation. When he messaged me I couldn’t believe he claimed I was the one being unethical after everything that had transpired. The reason I am posting this conversation is simple. He claimed this evening that he was not lying, but the facts don’t lie. During the conversation I realized some things just were not true. After the conversation I stepped away for a few to get a bite to eat and I realized some things just didn’t add up. So here it is, because I need to get this off my chest as well.

First of all, I find it interesting that I didn’t hear a single word from him for 66 hours. Our last conversation ended on January 12, at 9:53 pm, he finally contacted me this afternoon at 3:59 pm. If your account had been hacked, or you had led your hosting provider to believe your account may have been hacked, wouldn’t it be prudent to contact them as soon as possible to find out if it had indeed been hacked? Oh, that’s right, we all know it wasn’t hacked now, don’t we?

3:59:14 Josh Schnell: can you please explain to me why the account has been suspended when we’ve paid for the next three months?
4:35:55 Josh Schnell: you know. I fail to see how me paying through until march is unethical.
4:36:51 Josh Schnell: asking for support on something you paid for is completely within my rights.

6:15:09 Michael Barrett: asking for support for something that doesn’t exist, leading me to believe everything is kosher with us, is unethical. I spent 14 hours looking into your problem, even contacting others that I know who might help, and for what? You had already transferred the account. The reason email was not working and dns was not working is because it wasn’t assigned to my server anymore, yet you led me to believe (with all your WTF statements) that you had nothing to do with the changes… That sir, is unethical.

As you can see, there is a gap between his messages and my response, as I was away from my desk running errands this afternoon. I found it hilarious at the time that he thinks he has “rights” on my hosting server. He has an account. He pays for that account. He enjoys a few privileges and has access to certain software, but I wouldn’t call those “rights”. His account, like all of the others on my server, is subject to specific terms of service.

There are a few key points of our terms of service which apply to Mr. Schnell’s accounts (especially when I thought his account(s) may have been hacked).

From section 2:

  • Failure to respond to email from our abuse department within 48 hours may result in the suspension or termination of your services.
  • It is your responsibility to ensure that scripts/programs installed under your account are secure and permissions of directories are set properly, regardless of installation method

Although section 3 applies to spam, one paragraph applies because I was led to believe the account(s) may have been hacked:

  • We reserve the right to require changes or disable as necessary any web site, account, database, or other component that does not comply with this policy, at its sole discretion. We also reserve the right to make any such modifications in an emergency at our sole discretion.

From section 6:

  • We reserve the right to cancel the account at any time.

Simply paying for hosting service does not imply that your account will not be cancelled or suspended for any reason before the hosting period has expired.

I don’t think anyone would think it was unethical to cut off the “hackers” before they caused more trouble. I don’t think anyone would think it was unethical to suspend the accounts to protect other customers on the server. I received no response from Mr. Schnell for 66 hours. I don’t think anyone, except Mr. Schnell, would attempt to claim I was being unethical in this situation.

The conversation continued.

6:15:50 Josh Schnell: first, we’re planning on staying with you. We’re setting up a backup server, and a load balancing server. Second, I’ve paid until March 2010
6:16:18 Josh Schnell: What’s unethical is taking my 90 dollars, and cancelling my account without discussing any of this with me

6:16:54 Michael Barrett: Yes you have paid through March, and no one said your accounts would not be unsuspended. They were suspended when I realized there was an issue with the DNS, to make sure hackers could not get in. THAT is ethical.
6:16:59 Michael Barrett: I have cancelled nothing
6:17:03 Michael Barrett: I have terminated nothing
6:17:13 Michael Barrett: I was protecting you based on our CONVERSATION here on IM.
6:17:17 Michael Barrett: Nothing more

When we last spoke, I was under the impression he had been “hacked”, yet now we’re discussing a backup server AND a load balancing server.

When you set up a “backup server” you don’t necessarily redirect all of your traffic from your main server to that backup. You can initiate changes much easier than changing your name server at the registrar level to test the backup server. I’ve been in the business long enough to smell bullshit when it spews from someone’s mouth.

Maybe if I had heard from him before 66 hours passed, I wouldn’t have felt the need to suspend (not cancel) his accounts, and I might have been able to discuss it with him. I took the appropriate action with the information (or lack thereof) I had at the time.

The “backup server” story was bad enough, but it didn’t end there.

6:17:37 Josh Schnell: The DNS was faulty, and mail was not being directed.
6:17:45 Josh Schnell: For three websites
6:17:49 Josh Schnell: not just the alpha one server

6:17:51 Michael Barrett: The DNS was working perfectly based on the response I got from Media Temple

6:17:56 Josh Schnell: the eastscene account wasn’t getting mail
6:18:02 Josh Schnell: as well as another
6:18:24 Josh Schnell: there was most certainly a dns server issue

6:18:37 Michael Barrett: Not on my server there wasn’t

6:18:44 Josh Schnell: well, i’m glad to hear that

He claimed his alpha one account was not the only one with an issue. He claimed that he had issues with his eastscene account as well as an unidentified “other” account.

It’s funny how domain registration works. Each time you modify your domain record at the domain registrar, they keep track of those changes. From the moment you create the domain name until long after it’s cancelled, they have a record of each change made to the domain registration. Every change to the domain record is time stamped, and every domain registrar updates their “Last updated” record with that time stamp.

 

Remember, our initial conversation took place on January 12th, three days after the name server change was complete. The only DNS server issue that could have existed would have originated on his new server, not mine. The domain record clearly indicates that the domain name servers were not pointing to my server three days before this incident occurred.

He went on to state,

6:19:12 Josh Schnell: I wasn’t getting email… so I contacted my hosting company
6:19:42 Josh Schnell: I’m not sure what the heck warranted the post on your blog, or my account being suspended.

6:19:58 Michael Barrett: of course, you could have discussed that with me, rather than pretending that the dns wasn’t working because you had already initiated the change on the DNS. See, I know the dates and times the changes took place too. Our conversation was quite a while after you changed things… yet you pretended to not know why it was changed.
6:20:05 Michael Barrett: you pretended you might have been hacked.

6:20:21 Josh Schnell: you’ll never believe me, and I’m fine with that. But, I swear to god I thought there was a DNS issue

Apparently, he contacted the wrong hosting company, because as you can see in the image above, my server was no longer controlling his DNS. Before I continue any further, let me state that I have screen captures of the WHOIS records for each of his domains. I learned the following from those WHOIS queries:

  • alpha-one.ca was updated on January 12th, the day all of this took place, which means the change was submitted before our conversation that evening.
  • Seven other domains were changed before the 1st of the year.
  • One domain was changed on January 3rd.
  • Five domains are still pointing to my server.

Two-thirds of his domains were set to point to his new server days, even months, before he contacted me about this issue. He’s right, I’ll never believe him so he better be fine with that.

6:21:55 Josh Schnell: Which sites are on the server or not, isn’t the issue here. The issue is that I paid until March, and here I am with my money gone, and an inability to access client accounts.

Which sites are on my server was the issue. It still is the issue. I was told there was a DNS and email issue with alpha-one.ca, on my server, when the domain registration was clearly pointing it to another server. I was led to believe his account may have been hacked when he knew full well that he had initiated a change to the domain record that very day. He lied to me and wasted my time which could have been spent helping customers who actually needed something done. Which sites are on the server or not was, and still is, definitely the issue.

6:22:04 Michael Barrett: I could really care less if you were planning to move. I said so in the post, and i have said so with everyone I have discussed it with

6:22:16 Josh Schnell: Except me

6:22:23 Michael Barrett: You leaving is not my concern. What concerns me was the way you lied to me when we chatted the other night
6:22:24 Michael Barrett: Period
6:22:26 Michael Barrett: dude
6:22:35 Michael Barrett: You are acting like a victim. Look at your dns changes.
6:22:41 Michael Barrett: Macgasm was changed in OCTOBER

6:22:43 Josh Schnell: you can play the hurt card, but i’ll say it again…

6:22:48 Michael Barrett: I am not hurt
6:22:50 Michael Barrett: I told you that

6:23:03 Josh Schnell: then please restore my account, and files, in accordance with my payment.

6:23:07 Michael Barrett: Your account will be unsuspended sometime tonight.
6:23:11 Michael Barrett: Excuse me
6:23:18 Michael Barrett: Your payment does not guarantee anything
6:23:35 Michael Barrett: if I suspect something nefarious is taking place I can suspend or terminate accounts
6:23:38 Michael Barrett: read the terms of service
6:23:40 Michael Barrett: BUT

6:23:43 Josh Schnell: Dude, really? I’m hosting with you for over a two years now.

6:23:45 Michael Barrett: I will unsuspend them tonight

6:23:50 Josh Schnell: Thank you

Yeah, that’s waiting for a bit. I know, I know that I promised him his account would be unsuspended tonight but that’s going to have to wait until I remove all of the “special” features he was not paying for, you know, in accordance with his payment. Once I have those changes complete, I will be unsuspending his account(s) even though they don’t point to my server any longer. I’m just not sure what I should do about all that space that is being used and never part of the plan. I wonder what I can do about that in accordance to his payment?

Sadly though, it didn’t end there.

6:25:18 Michael Barrett: The DNS for Macgasm changed in OCTOBER. The change on alpha-one was submitted BEFORE you had the conversation with me. so how do YOU justify all the “WTF’s” when I mentioned the DNS had changed

6:25:33 Josh Schnell: i forgot about editdns…
6:25:40 Josh Schnell: here’s i’ll log in and get you a screencap
6:25:44 Josh Schnell: or at least try to

6:25:48 Michael Barrett: But YOU knew you had submitted the change

6:26:03 Josh Schnell: editdns had been the alpha—one dns since the beginning

6:26:05 Michael Barrett: and YOU led me to believe something nefarious was going on, hence the reason your accounts were suspended

6:26:07 Josh Schnell: beginning
6:26:16 Josh Schnell: i haven’t changed it
6:26:20 Josh Schnell: because they’re charging now
6:26:49 Josh Schnell: restoring my account. I’ll get you a screen cap
6:27:35 Josh Schnell: i don’t even know what email it’s going to

At this point in the conversation he directed me to an image he had uploaded (I am not posting that url here because you know that might not be ethical). Anyway, the dateless image showed a lot of dns entries at editdns some of which pointed to my server but it also had the following disclaimer at the top of the page:

 

“Your domain is currently suspended and will not resolve. Please contact EditDNS Support for more information”.

Wow. Maybe that’s why DNS and mail were not working for the domain or any of them hosted using his alpha-one.ca name servers? The WHOIS record I pulled today clearly shows that his dns record for alpha one had indeed changed on January 12th.

 

At this point, I should have ended the conversation. There was no need to keep rehashing the same information. It was clear he was not going to apologize for leading me to believe his account(s) had been hacked, and I wasn’t going to believe another word he said. Then he said,

6:32:53 Josh Schnell: see. i didn’t change the dns.
6:33:00 Josh Schnell: it’s been like this since the beginning

Without dragging this out much further, he went on to say that the reason he moved “a couple” sites over to his “backup” server was because he “panicked”.

6:33:29 Michael Barrett: You panicked, and moved ALL your sites to another server?

6:33:41 Josh Schnell: we have a backup server
6:33:47 Josh Schnell: for a client
6:33:56 Josh Schnell: so i moved a couple sites over there

Funny thing that panic. It took place days and months before January 12th.

6:34:45 Josh Schnell: i changed them after our conversation
6:34:56 Josh Schnell: they were backed up there

The only site moved on January 12th, you know at the time of the “hack”, was alpha-one.ca. Was that some sort of “pre-panic”?

He claimed that if he was attempting to screw me over he would have never paid for three months, and he would have made sure everything was moved before then without saying a word. By the looks of things to me and all these screen captures, just about everything was moved before he uttered one word on the 12th.

At the end of the conversation we were discussing name server changes and backup servers. I pointed out that it didn’t make much sense to have a backup server where you had to update your name server record to allow access to the backup because propagation of the name server change can take up to 72 hours.

6:39:50 Josh Schnell: when some clients rely solely on the Internet for income, relying on one server is a bad practice

6:41:06 Michael Barrett: I know it is. But name server changes can take 72 hours to propagate through the Internet. so using a backup server at a different location rather than at one where the IP for the name server can be changed quickly eliminates that as a suitable “replacement” during down time for one server.

6:41:26 Josh Schnell: “upto” is the key word there

We both agreed it usually doesn’t take that long, in fact it’s much quicker. And then he added,

6:41:33 Josh Schnell: servers update a lot quicker

6:41:37 Michael Barrett: not always

6:41:44 Josh Schnell: alpha-one switched in 20mins for me

Wow. The same alpha-one.ca account he said he didn’t change was switched in 20 minutes when he changed it.

Like I said in my original post, and reiterated at the beginning of this post, I am not angry that he chose to change hosting servers. If was angry about that, I would have just terminated the hosting accounts. All of them. If I was angry that he changed hosting servers I never would have made my original post or this one.

I am angry because I was lied to. I am angry because I wasted 14 hours trying to solve a problem that did not exist. I am angry because I spent two years hosting his sites, kicking in extras along the way, only to be lied to, not once, not twice, but several times over the course of both conversations.

So why should I believe anything he stated in either conversation?

Throughout tonight’s conversation I was told that all this occurred because he was setting up a ‘backup server’ yet it turned out to be a “backup server for a client”.

I was told to restore his account and files in accordance with his payment, even though I had suspended his account(s) in accordance with the terms of service because I was initially under the impression his account(s) had been hacked.

I was told he never made changes to his dns for the alpha one account and that he ‘panicked’ and moved a couple sites on the 12th even though all but one site were moved long before the 12th.

At no time today did he apologize for leading me to believe his account(s) had been hacked. At no time today did he offer any explanation as to why all of the accounts were moved before the 12th. At no time did he apologize for lying to me. That is the most disappointing part of the whole thing.

When confronted about the entire ordeal he disregarded every statement I made about the “hack”, yet he was most adamant about being “paid up until March”.

Forget the fact that I busted my ass to make sure his data was secure. Forget the fact I spent 14 hours searching for clues. Forget the fact that I have spent the previous two years making sure he had the best customer service you’ll find in the web hosting industry.

Well, I’m done.

It’s obvious that he is not going to man up and apologize, but that doesn’t matter anymore. He proved his worth today, and that’s not saying much at all.

I have made significant changes to his account(s) removing every “extra” I have added over the past two years and restoring all of his space and bandwidth limitations per our original agreement. He paid for three months of hosting, and now that I know his account(s) were not hacked, he will get the remainder of his three months (as long as he does not violate our terms of service). He will be billed accordingly for any extras and overages that may occur on his account, just like every other customer hosted on my server.

Since money is so important to him, I will honor his subscription term, at which time his accounts will be terminated. Too bad you can’t buy ethics, I’d gladly refund his money if he promised to buy some.

Wrinkles, Reservations, Research, & Response

Thought #1

Is anyone surprised that documents related to the California Attorney General’s investigation of ACORN ended up in the trash?

The documents were thrown out in advance of state investigators arriving at the local ACORN office to conduct an investigation resulting from national media attention. ACORN employee Juan Carlos Vera was videotaped giving advice to two individuals posing as a pimp and a prostitute regarding underage prostitution and human smuggling. Without admitting any wrongdoing ACORN terminated Mr. Vera, or so they said.

To tell you the truth, I am more surprised that the Justice Department has decided that ACORN should be paid even though Congress banned the government from providing money to them.

The Justice Department has concluded that the Obama administration can lawfully pay the community group Acorn for services provided under contracts signed before Congress banned the government from providing money to the group.

The department’s conclusion, laid out in a recently disclosed five-page memorandum from David Barron, the acting assistant attorney general for the Office of Legal Counsel, adds a new wrinkle to a sharp political debate over the antipoverty group’s activities and recent efforts to distance the government from it.

That’s one hell of a wrinkle if you ask me.

Thought #2

Do you think the Obama Administration can effectively prevent an act of terrorism here in the United States? They can’t even prevent uninvited guests from shaking the President’s hand, AT THE WHITE HOUSE, what makes you think you’re safe in your home?

This time, the picture is the story.

After the Secret Service insisted that President Barack Obama was never endangered by a security breach that allowed a couple to crash his first state dinner, the White House has released a photo showing that not only did the pair get close to Obama, they actually shook hands and talked to him.

As the White House was disclosing that the Virginia couple, Michaele and Tareq Salahi, met Obama in the receiving line, a “deeply concerned and embarrassed” Secret Service on Friday acknowledged that its officers never checked whether the two were on the guest list before letting them onto the White House grounds.

Thought #3

ClimateGate is heating up. Pardon the pun.

Michael Mann, co-author of the Copenhagen Diagnosis and lead author of the UN IPCC Third Assessment Report, blamed skeptics for taking the personal emails out of context.

“What they’ve done is search through stolen personal emails—confidential between colleagues who often speak in a language they understand and is often foreign to the outside world. Suddenly, all these are subject to cherry picking,” he said.

This is a “smear campaign to distract the public,” said Mann. “Those opposed to climate action, simply don’t have the science on their side,” he added.

I am a programmer. I converse with many programmers. It’s true we sometimes speak our own language that many might not understand, but please understand a couple things. When we use the words “our data are surely wrong” or “our observing system is inadequate”, the words wrong and inadequate mean exactly what you think they mean.

The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t. The CERES data published in the August BAMS 09 supplement on 2008 shows there should be even more warming: but the data are surely wrong. Our observing system is inadequate.

The fact that the Climate Research Unit emails have been released, whether they discredit the entire global warming / climate change argument or not, paints the entire concept of global warming as nothing but a myth perpetuated by those who sought only to take advantage of the people of the world.

Are ice caps melting? It seems so, yes. Have we noticed changes in our climate? Yes, again. Does man have any effect on the climate? So far, this newly released information says no. We’re not talking one or two emails, either. We’re talking about more than 1,000 emails, none of which support the theory of man-made global warming.

Thought #4

President Obama has to be the most obvious “anti-Israel” President our nation has ever seen.

Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said he could “guarantee” that arch-terrorist Marwan Barghouti would not be released from prison in any deal to exchange terrorists for kidnapped IDF soldier Gilad Shalit. “We have no intention to free the head of the murderers, a person who has been sentenced to four life terms in prison. There are red lines, and this is one of them,” Lieberman said.

In response to U.S. demands that Israel free an additional 1,000-some terrorists as a “gesture” to Palestinian Authority chief Mahmoud Abbas, Lieberman said that previous releases of Fatah terrorists “have not proven themselves. The Olmert administration did this several times and it did not work, and we do not plan to allow it to happen,” Lieberman said.

The Obama administration demanded that Israel release Palestinian prisoners. How about we demand that Palestinians stop entering Israeli towns and blowing themselves up? How about we demand that Palestinians release Israelis they are holding? How about we demand that Palestinians show some initiative that they want peace (which we all know they don’t)?

I’ve got a better idea. Why don’t we demand that President Obama stop threatening the state of Israel by showing such obvious support to terrorists? That is not a rhetorical question.

Do You Feel Stimulated Yet?

I’m sure by now you’ve heard about the thousands and thousands of jobs that Barack Obama’s stimulus bill has created, haven’t you? If not, here’s a refresher.

Before I begin with all the “regular jobs”, you may want to take a look at recovery.gov. The Obama administration paid $9.5 million for a redesign of that website. I bet that web developer is stimulated.

Now let’s look at some real job stimuli, or at least what the Obama administration wants you to think was job stimuli.

Obama Administration Lie: Talladega County, Alabama received $42,141 in stimulus funds from the Department of Justice which saved or created 5,000 jobs.

Reality Check: According to Talladega County ad­ministrator Wayne Hall, all of that money was used to purchase computers, not the creation of jobs.

Obama Administration Lie: Shelton State Community College in Tuscaloosa, Alabama received $27,502 from the General Accounting Office which saved or created 14,500 jobs.

Reality Check: Shelton State employs 360 full-time and 300 part-time employees. Where do the other 13,840 people work now?

Obama Administration Lie: Arizona’s 15th congressional district received $761,420 to save or create 30 jobs.

Reality Check: There is no Arizona 15th district. Arizona has just eight congressional districts.

With all the errors, the apparent use of fuzzy math, and the creation of fictitious congressional districts, I decided to look at the summary for all congressional districts in Georgia (we have 13).

If you click the image to your left you will see all of Georgia’s congressional districts listed in the order of stimulus funds received. You will also notice a few more congressional districts than we actually have.

It appears, according to recovery.gov, that Georgia’s fictitious congressional districts 00, 86, 25, 21, 19, 14, and 27 received $6,217,770 in stimulus funds and 1 job was created in that fictitious 00th district.

Where exactly did that money go? We know for a fact the districts don’t exist, so whose pockets were stimulated with those funds? What disturbs me more than the fact they cannot account for any of the funds already spent, they are actually talking about a second stimulus “jobs” package.

Are they kidding?

First they give billions of dollars in TARP funds to banks and other financial firms with no guarantee that we will ever see that money again. Next, they give billions of dollars to automakers, again with no guarantees. And now, they cannot account for all of the stimulus money they have spent yet they want the American people to “pay back” the tax credit they received this year.

More than 15 million taxpayers could unexpectedly owe taxes when they file their federal returns next spring because the government was too generous with their new Making Work Pay tax credit.

Taxpayers are at risk if they have more than one job, are married and both spouses work, or receive Social Security benefits while also earning taxable wages, according to a report Monday by the Treasury Department’s inspector general for tax administration.

“While implementing a credit through reduced withholding is an effective way to provide economic stimulus evenly throughout the year, it is difficult to account for everyone’s circumstances,” said J. Russell George, the Treasury inspector general for tax administration. “More than 10 percent of all taxpayers who file individual tax returns for 2009 could owe additional taxes.”

That’s right, they spent the earlier part of this year stimulating you just so they could make it easier to screw you before the end of the year.

Taking TARP, the auto bailouts, and the stimulus package into account, how do you think government controlled health care is going to go over? I’ll give you an idea.

 

Don’t go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first.
Mark Twain

Protocol, Perception, Procrastinating, & Pretenders

Thought #1

Instead of coming up with some nonsensical excuse for explaining why the leader of the free world bowed in submission to the Emperor of Japan, the Obama Administration has decided that doing so was an act of protocol.

A senior administration official said President Barack Obama was simply observing protocol when he bowed to Japanese Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko upon arriving at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo on Saturday.

Who’s the moron that added “The President shall bow to all foreign leaders in a symbolic gesture of submission and capitulation” to the administration protocol books? It seems to me that Barack Obama is the only world leader that symbolizes submission and capitulation while meeting other world leaders.

Thought #2

According to the CDC, swine Mexican flu has infected 22 million Americans and killed roughly 4,000 of them.

Swine flu has sickened about 22 million Americans since April and killed nearly 4,000, including 540 children, according to startling federal estimates released Thursday.

That’s a death rate of 0.00018182 or 0.01812 percent. In simpler terms, 1.812 people out of every 10,000 infected will die from swine Mexican flu.

Now there’s word of a new “pneumonic plague” sweeping across Europe that’s more deadly than H1N1.

A deadly plague could sweep across Europe, doctors fear, after an outbreak of a virus in Ukraine plunged the country and its neighbours into a state of panic.

A cocktail of three flu viruses are reported to have mutated into a single pneumonic plague, which it is believed may be far more dangerous than swine flu. The death toll has reached 189 and more than 1 million people have been infected, most of them in the nine regions of Western Ukraine.

Whoa. 189 people are dead, out of one million. That puts the death rate for this “deadly plague” at 0.000189 or 0.0189 percent. Yes, it’s true. This pneumonic plague kills 1.89 people out of every 10,000 infected.

The new scary plague will kill 0.078 more people per 10,000 infected than Swine Mexican Flu. For you mathematically challenged people out there that’s equal to 7.8 people per million. We’re talking a death rate less than one-fiftieth of one percent, and just so we all keep one foot on the ground, let’s remember a few things.

  • the survival rate for all cancers diagnosed from 1996-2004 (after five years) is just 66%. That puts the death rate at 34%.
  • in 2005, coronary heart disease death rates per 100,000 people were 187.7 for white males and 213.9 for black males; and 110.0 for white females and 140.9 for black females, which puts the lowest death rate for coronary heart disease at 0.11 percent or 11 deaths per 10,000 people.

So the next time someone starts talking about these “super bugs” and “deadly plagues” take a moment to step back and look at the whole story. It might not be as bleak as they want you to think it is.

Thought #3

Barack Obama seems to have forgotten, yet again, words that have come from his own mouth.

In November of 2008, while running for President, Barack Obama said the following while addressing a group of bipartisan governors and talking about climate change and reducing emissions.

Delay is no longer an option. Denial is no longer an acceptable response.

Candidate Barack Obama made it clear that delay was no longer an option, but today, one year and one election later, President Barack Obama and other world leaders made it clear that delay is the only option.

U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders on Sunday supported delaying a legally binding climate pact until 2010 or even later, but European negotiators said the move did not imply weaker action.

Some argued that legal technicalities might otherwise distract the talks in Copenhagen and it was better to focus on the core issue of cutting climate-warming emissions.

Great job, Mr. President. You’ve proven once again that we cannot rely on a single word that comes out of your mouth.

Thought #4

What happens when a presidential administration and recipients of stimulus funds pretend to create jobs?

More than ten percent of the jobs the Obama administration has claimed were “created or saved” by the $787 billion stimulus package are doubtful or imaginary, according to reports compiled from eleven major newspapers and the Associated Press.

I haven’t really paid attention to many AP “investigations” since Barack Obama was elected because their reporting has been so biased it just didn’t warrant wasting my time to read what they had to say. What’s different this time?

It seems that eleven major newspapers actually did some groundwork (formerly known as “journalism”) and started asking questions.

For example, in South Carolina,

“The Greenville Housing Authority “saved or created” 118 jobs by use of federal stimulus money, according to the Obama administration. Not bad for an agency that has 35 employees.”

And in Harry Reid’s neck of the woods,

At least 4,000 of the supposedly created jobs in Nevada government — and possibly hundreds more — have been called into question in the light of reports that local governments were “told to take the amount of stimulus money they received and divide it by $92,000, the theoretical average wage and benefits of a job.” The Nevada Department of Education divided by $66,681 and the state’s higher education system used a figure of $45,000 when each estimated 2,000 jobs “saved.”

Thank goodness someone is finally questioning what this administration is claiming to have accomplished. When all is said and done, I’m pretty sure the following will be a complete (and unedited) list of the Obama administration’s accomplishments:

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Public, Pots, Pelosi, & PussyFooting

Everyone’s feeling better around here, with the exception of the middle child. He’s always the last to get the crud as it makes its way through the house, but he’s also the quickest to recover too, so he should be back up to speed about the same time as everyone else.

I’ve got a lot on my plate again this week, but it’s nothing I can’t handle or I am going to complain about. Here are my thoughts for tonight.

Thought #1

Not even votes for the “government option”?

The House Dem leadership has conducted its preliminary whip count and has tallied up less than 200 likely Yes votes in support of a health care reform bill with a robust public option, well short of the 218 needed for passage, according to an internal whip count document I’ve obtained.

We’ll see. I still think they are going to attempt to ram it through, regardless of the government option or other amendments.

Thought #2

President Obama has unveiled yet another “plan” which further erodes capitalism in the United States.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp would have authority to unwind large firms whose failure could threaten the overall economy, said the TV business news channel.

“Resolution authority,” or empowering the government to deal with large troubled firms that are not banks, is crucial to reforming financial regulation, lawmakers and Obama have said for months since last year’s severe financial crisis.

Since when should any “authority” in the United States posess the power to “unwind” large firms? The free market does that when the company dies. Each time he puts his fingers in the pot he adds ingredients that are sure to spoil the whole thing.

Thought #3

Nancy Pelosi doesn’t like to be asked questions about the Constitution, unless they are serious.

When CNSNews.com asked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Thursday where the Constitution authorized Congress to order Americans to buy health insurance–a mandate included in both the House and Senate versions of the health care bill–Pelosi dismissed the question by saying: “Are you serious? Are you serious?”

Yes, she’s serious. In other words she had no idea. She doesn’t want you to have any idea either.

Thought #4

Speaking of Nanny State Nancy, it seems someone from the House of Representatives was researching some information yesterday.

Someone using the Internet from within the walls of the House of Representatives did a Google search for “nobel peace prize” and “consent of congress”.

I don’t know if I should be proud that a House member is using my site as reference for information on a very important piece of the U.S. Constitution, or scared that a House member had to resort to Google and my site to find otu what the U.S. Consitution says.

Either way, I am glad they stopped by because at least I know someone is doing something up there on the Hill. If they’re researching information I’m glad I could help.

Thought #5

It seems President Obama wasn’t talking about any health care bill when he spoke to the joint session of Congress.

Rep. Bart Stupak (D.-Mich.) told CNSNews.com that President Barack Obama told him in a telephone conversation that when he said in his Sept. 9 speech to a joint session of Congress that “under our plan no federal dollars will be used to fund abortions” he was not talking about the actual bill drafted in the House but about the president’s own health care plan—which has never been written.

“I don’t know if it is a game of semantics or what,” Stupak said of Obama’s nationally televised declaration to Congress that the health-care plan will not allow federal funding of abortion.

Ooooh. The health care plan which has never been written. Wait. Doesn’t that apply to many different pieces of non-legislation which the Senate and House will be voting on soon?

Thought #6

The war in Afghanistan is President Obama’s war now. Because he has pussy footed around and hesitated in following General McChrystal’s recommendation for more troops, more of our service members have died.

While Obama continues to dither, American lives continue to be lost. As 8 more American troops were killed in two separate bomb attacks today in southern Afghanistan, this officially makes October 2009 the deadliest month of the war for U.S. forces since the start of the Afghan war in 2001.

Thanks Mr. President, it’s all on you now.