Financial Statements…

I am going to be busy for the next few days as we try to nail down our living arrangements before Friday. We’ve set a sort of “personal goal” to have something permanent lined up as soon as possible.

While I work on our finances and make sure we have enough money to pay for our next home, take a moment to see how much your government is spending

 

Just for grins, use the above chart to dissect Christopher Hayes’ statement that our current and future deficits are caused by “three things: the ongoing wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the Bush tax cuts and the recession.”

Two of those three things — the wars and tax cuts — were in effect from 2003 through 2007. Do you see alarming deficits or trends from 2003 through 2007 in the above chart? No. In fact, the trend through 2007 is shrinking deficits. What you see is a significant upward tick in 2008, and then an explosion in 2009. Now, what might have happened between 2007 and 2008, and then 2009?

If I worked my budget the way the Democrats have been working with our economy, I would be moving into Bill Gates’ house and you’d all be paying for it!!! Aren’t you glad I’m not a Democrat?!?

Planning, Parties, Payments, & Planning

Just a few quick thoughts tonight, as I am still working on a couple projects.

Thought #1

Have you marked your calendar yet?

The Douglas County TEA (Taxed Enough Already) Party announced Friday that it’s brewing up another mass rally for June 4 to protest big taxes and big government.

“We’re hard at work organizing the next big event,” Maureen Miller, group spokesperson, said Friday in a news release. “We plan more great local speakers, an awesome keynote celebrity and lots of fun surprises in the works.”

The group has not determined the location of the June 4 TEA Party but listed the time on its Web site as 6-9 p.m.

Organizers have also announced they will hold what they call an “Instant TEA” on April 15, federal tax filing deadline day, at the intersection of Chapel Hill and Timber Ridge roads from 5:30-7 p.m.

Read more at the Douglas County Tea Party website, developed and maintained by yours truly.

Thought #2

It seems Scary Harry Reid doesn’t really know how to throw a party. It seems only 100 supporters showed up for his campaign kickoff.

Wow. 100?!? With his poll numbers in the tank the way they are, I am surprised that many showed up.

Thought #3

The bills have to be paid somehow. This is just one (real) possibility, so keep your eyes on Washington and be ready for that fight too.

Even before the bill became law, many economists — and this writer — argued that only one tax could raise the giant revenues needed to escape a ruinous rise in debt: a European-style Value-Added Tax, or VAT. “The healthcare bill makes the logical case for the VAT stronger, because it’s not clear that Congress will make the difficult spending reductions the bill mandates,” says William Gale, an economist with the Brookings Institution. “The Fiscal Commission will give significant support for a VAT,” says Brian Riedl of the conservative Heritage Foundation.

Thought #4

I want to do a much more in-depth article one day about dryer sheets, but for now I am going to post some links which address the toxic danger of those nice little static cling eliminators.

The following chemicals are found in most dryer sheets:

  • ALPHA-TERPINEOL- Causes CNS (Central Nervous System) disorders and is highly irritating to mucus membranes.
  • BENZYL ACETATE- Carcinogenic (linked to pancreatic cancer).
  • BENZYL ALCOHOL- Causes CNS disorders. It is irritating to the upper respiratory tract” causing “headache, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, drop in blood pressure, CNS depression, and death in severe cases due to respiratory failure.
  • CAMPHOR- Causes CNS disorders.
  • CHLOROFORM- Toxic. It is an anesthetic and carcinogenic.
  • ETHYL ACETATE- Narcotic. This product is on the EPA’s Hazardous Waste list. Irritating to the eyes and respiratory tract.
  • LINALOOL- Narcotic. Causes DNS disorder, respiratory disturbances.
  • PENTANE-”Danger-Harmful if inhaled; extremely flammable.

Dryer sheets are added when you dry your clothes. The chemicals listed above are spread on your clothes before you pull them out of the dryer, fold them, and put them away. Nothing else touches them (or rinses the chemicals out) until after you have worn them.

As I said, I need to do more research on this, but for now, you might want to find an alternative to using something laced with any known harmful chemicals.

— Posted with Stuffr! —

Something Stinks, And It Isn’t Caviar

It’s no secret, times are tough. Many families are struggling to keep up with their bills and some are having a hard time keeping food on the table.

With the costs associated with the bailout fiascos introduced by the Bush administration and the continued bailouts, stimulus packages, and proposed health care tax increases by the Obama administration families across this country will have a rough time for an extended period of time.

During this time of economic upheaval, the administration as well as members of Congress should be cutting back, shouldn’t they? Shouldn’t they be trying to save money wherever possible, especially when many of their expenses are paid by us, the American people?

With the idea of “cutting back” in your mind, guess how many members of Congress made the trip to Copenhagen for the climate change conference last month? Three? Five? Ten? How about Twenty?

CBS investigative correspondent Sharyl Attkisson reports that cameras spotted House Speaker Nancy Pelosi at the summit. She called the shots on who got to go. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, and embattled Chairman of the Tax Committee Charles Rangel were also there.

They were joined by 17 colleagues: Democrats: Waxman, Miller, Markey, Gordon, Levin, Blumenauer, DeGette, Inslee, Ryan, Butterfield, Cleaver, Giffords, and Republicans: Barton, Upton, Moore Capito, Sullivan, Blackburn and Sensenbrenner.

Why did the United States need 20 members of Congress at this conference? I guess we won’t know because Speaker Pelosi’s office hasn’t released any cost estimates and would not agree to be interviewed by the reporter who wrote the article.

So how did they get there? They used two military 737’s and a Gulfstream 5 to get there. The Gulfstream held up to 64 passengers.

But wait. There is more.

Additional Senators (with their staff) also attended the conference, some with their spouses. To be fair, the spouses may have utilized open seats on the military jet, and the room costs were the same whether there was one person or two sleeping there.

CBS reports that there were up to “101 Congress-related” attendees. They also report:

Until required filings are made in the coming weeks, we can only figure bits and pieces of the cost to you.

  • Three military jets at $9,900 per hour – $168,000 just in flight time.
  • Dozens flew commercial at up to $2,000 each.
  • 321 hotel nights booked – the bulk at Copenhagen’s five-star Marriott.
  • Meals add tens of thousands more.

Steve Ellis of Taxpayers for Common Sense, wasn’t against a U.S. presence. But he said, “Every penny counts. Congress should be shaking the couch cushions looking for change, rather than spending cash for everybody to go to Copenhagen.”

I agree completely. I don’t care what they’re reasoning is, did we really need to send such a large presence to the conference and produce enough carbon dioxide to fill 10,000 Olympic sized swimming pools? I thought the conference was all about climate change and saving the planet?

Forget the checkbooks and accountability for a second. The members of Congress who attended the conference did more to choke our planet in one day than you, and I, and a hundred of our friends would (or could) in an entire year.

Kudos to CBS for calling out Congress on this one. The problem with members of Congress is they aren’t used to being held accountable for anything.

Spenders, Snubs, & Shakespeare

As you’ve read in the previous few posts, this was a busy week. Next week will be even busier. Thank God it’s Friday. (No that was not an ad). Tomorrow I am taking the boys over to Sweetwater Creek State Park to do some birdwatching. Who knows what we’ll see.

For now, let’s see what else happened this week that I forgot to talk about.

Thought #1

The current debt ceiling is $12.1 trillion. Democrats want to raise that ceiling 14.87% this year alone.

In a bold but risky year-end strategy, Democrats are preparing to raise the federal debt ceiling by as much as $1.8 trillion before New Year’s rather than have to face the issue again prior to the 2010 elections.

“We’ve incurred this debt. We have to pay our bills,” House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told POLITICO Wednesday. And the Maryland Democrat confirmed that the anticipated increase could be as high as $1.8 trillion — nearly twice what had been assumed in last spring’s budget resolution for the 2010 fiscal year.

I don’t know about you, but my bank doesn’t increase my credit line 14.87% everytime I get close to reaching my limit. It’s time to stop this b.s., isn’t it?

Thought #2

Wow. It’s one thing to change protocol at the White House and attempt to change things at every level of government here in the United States, but isn’t it a bit arrogant to cancel out on the events that Norway plans for all Nobel Peace Prize winners?

Barack Obama’s trip to Oslo to pick up his Nobel peace award is in danger of being overshadowed by a row over the cancellation of a series of events normally attended by the prizewinner.

Norwegians are incensed over what they view as his shabby response to the prize by cutting short his visit.

The White House has cancelled many of the events peace prize laureates traditionally submit to, including a dinner with the Norwegian Nobel committee, a press conference, a television interview, appearances at a children’s event promoting peace and a music concert, as well as a visit to an exhibition in his honour at the Nobel peace centre.

He has also turned down a lunch invitation from the King of Norway.

Oh that’s right, President Obama isn’t like most of the other Nobel Peace Prize winners. They actually had to earn theirs. I found this following line the funniest of them all in the article.

The Norwegian Nobel committee, which awards the peace prize, dismissed the criticism. “We always knew that there were too many events in the programme. Obama has to govern the US and we were told early on that he could not commit to all of them,” said Geir Lundestad, secretary of the committee.

President Obama is far too busy governing the United States so it’s understandable that he cannot find the time to attend all of these events. I suppose the Nobel committee forgot all about his trip to Copenhagen to lobby for the 2016 games for the city of Chicago.

The Obama administration said at the time that the President could ‘multitask’ so there was no problem with him traveling to Copenhagen to lobby the Olympic Committee.

So what’s the problem with Oslo and the King of Norway? No kickbacks? No incentive to attend? Come on, tell the truth for once.

Thought #3

Al Gore doesn’t know how to read

. It must be all those carbon credit fumes clouding his mind.

Q: How damaging to your argument was the disclosure of e-mails from the Climate Research Unit at East Anglia University?

A: To paraphrase Shakespeare, it’s sound and fury signifying nothing. I haven’t read all the e-mails, but the most recent one is more than 10 years old. These private exchanges between these scientists do not in any way cause any question about the scientific consensus.

Yet, the East Anglia emails are dated from March 7,1996 through November 12, 2009. Wow. First we have global warming now we have time warping. Ten years have passed since November 12th? Someone get me a few thousand global second credits, this is going to be painful.

Capitulation, China, Crazies, & Contracts

I’ve got quite a bit on my mind this evening, so let’s get started.

Thought #1

The Obama administration has decided that the mastermind of the September 11th attacks should be tried in a criminal court with a civilian jury. No matter what you call it, we are at war with Al Qaeda, and trying those captured on the battlefield in our nation’s courtrooms makes about as much sense as completely overhauling our nation’s healthcare system to insure those who are currently uninsured.

According to former Director of Central Intelligence George Tenet, when 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was apprehended in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, in March 2003, his first response to his captors was to sneer “I’ll talk to you guys after I get to New York and see my lawyer.”

Now the second half of KSM’s taunt to his captors is coming true. He is off to New York, where he will have endless opportunities to converse with his many lawyers. They will work hard to ensure that his trial is all about what he “endured” at the hands of the U.S. government, and not at all about what he inflicted on the American people. They will strive to put in the dock George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, George Tenet, John Yoo, the CIA, and the United States government and the American people.

This decision will have serious repercussions for the United States. Precedent will be set to try all war criminals in our courtrooms, and we all know that’s a terrible idea. Let me make it clear that I would support trying him in our criminal courts with a civilian jury, if and only if (a) he had been in the United States when the attack occurred, and (b) he was captured on American soil. But neither (a) nor (b) apply in this case, and therefore I see no reason (other than showing a sign of weakness to our enemy) for trying his case on U.S. soil in American courts.

Many argue that it would be a “hang him now” type trial anyway, but that is irrelevant, especially in light of the fact that the last guy who tried to blow up the World Trade Center didn’t get the death penalty either.

The entire world will be watching the circus that is created by holding his trial in New York, and the entire world, especially our enemies will perceive our actions as weakness in the battle and a sign of capitulation on the part of our President.

Don’t believe me? Just pay attention for the next few months. Watch what happens here in the United States as well as across the world.

Thought #2

In an apparent attempt to show they are pleased with President Obama, the people of China are preparing for his upcoming visit on Sunday.

The Chinese have learned English from his speeches and celebrated the way he rolls up his sleeves. Now President Barack Obama is finally coming, and he’s being greeted with “Oba Mao” T-shirts and a statue of him that bursts into flames.

“He’s so hot right now, so I wanted to translate that through my work,” said Liu, who was inspired by the idea of the first black U.S. president.

Oba-Mao t-shirts and a statue that bursts into flames? Those Chinese have a strange way of showing their support of the curent U.S. President, don’t they?

If I was Obama, I would be worried about that Mao Tse Tung visual association and the fact that the people of China actually think setting him on fire is a sign of respect. Shen Dingli brings it all into perspective later in the article.

“He’s special for the Americans, but definitely not for the Chinese,” said Shen Dingli, director of the Center for American Studies at Fudan University in Shanghai. “On the contrary, we are always influenced by the tone of government-monitored media.”

Maybe Obama is heading over there for a refresher course on that “government-monitored media” they speak of.

Thought #3

Does this really make sense?

The Obama administration, mindful of public anxiety over the government’s mushrooming debt, is shifting emphasis from big-spending policies to deficit reduction. Domestic agencies have been told to brace for a spending freeze or cuts of up to 5 percent as part of a midterm election-year push to rein in record budget shortfalls.

President Obama, Nanny State Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader Scary Harry Reid are all working as hard as they can to force government run health care down our throats at a cost that will add unprecedented amounts to our deficit. So this year they are going to triple our deficit, but “next year” they are going to freeze spending and make cuts.

Sure they are. Sure they are.

Thought #4

I don’t mean to be disrespectful… Oh who am I kidding? When I read the following quote I couldn’t help but remember 1994.

Newt Gingrich, the former Republican House speaker and purveyor of the GOP “Contract With America” that helped his party win control of the House after President Bill Clinton’s election, says GOP chairman Michael Steele has started work on a new framework for 2010 that he is calling “First principles.”

They’ve done this before, and we fell for it. The “Contract With America” was a great idea, it was a great motivator and it helped turn the tide in Washington, D.C., but soon afterward we all realized that it was just a ploy for many Republicans In Name Only to gain a stronghold in an otherwise crowded House.

For too many years now, we’ve watched those same Republicans become lazy, non-responsive, and ineffective when it comes to doing what is best for our country.

Sorry Newt, I’m not falling for it this time. The upcoming elections in 2010 have nothing to do with the (R) or the (D) next to the candidates names. It has everything to do with making sure that those candidates which are elected can do the best job to preserve the principles of our founding fathers and our nation’s laws.

Thought #5

Sometimes I wonder how much disdain one must have for his country to act like this.

 

Wow. Just wow. Such respect for our nation, for our flag, for our principles. Great job, Mr. President.

With that, I will finish for the night.

UPDATE (11/18/2009):

It’s come to my attention that the above photograph was not taken during the playing of our National Anthem or for any reason to salute the flag. The other people on the stage were saluting President Obama as he was introduced. I hope you’ll forgive this slight error, as President Obama is known for standing in the same pose while our National Anthem is actually playing.

 
This one has video to back it up.

 

A man’s country is not a certain area of land, of mountains, rivers, and woods, but it is a principle and patriotism is loyalty to that principle.
George William Curtis