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3651  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / "the People’s Republic of Massachusetts" on: January 18, 2010, 07:11:43 PM
It is hard not to agree that should Brown win tomorrow it would be in my opinion the most stunning political upset in memory.
It is also encouraging in that it shows me at least it is not too late to stop the liberal agenda before it is too late.

Morris does seem to suggest Reconciliation is to be used for "budget reasons" and appears to be more of a bluff then anything else.

By Dick Morris And Eileen McGann 01.18.2010 Beyond a pleasing sight for the heart, what would Ted Kennedy’s seat going Republican really mean?

A lot.

First, there would be the psychological effect. On Democratic donors — it would discourage them from opening their checkbooks. On Republican donors — the impact would be electric in kindling their interest and generosity. On Democratic incumbents seeking re-election — it would make the beaches and golf courses that await them in their Florida retirement homes (and the lucrative lobbying jobs in Washington) infinitely more attractive. On Republicans considering running for the House and the Senate — it will help them see the truth: That their time is at hand! (It might even help our esteemed Party Chairman Michael Steele, realize that we can capture both houses this year!)

But in the Senate itself, it would really signal the end of Obama’s legislative dominance. He’ll probably be able to pass health care either by Democratic dithering in certifying Brown’s election or by ramming through the bill while he’s en route to Washington on the shuttle.

But, beyond that, the prospects of getting 60 votes on the remaining items in Obama’s legislative agenda: cap and trade, union card check, and immigration reform would slip away with the Massachusetts result.

He cannot govern through reconciliation (passing bills with 51 votes by pretending they are just budget bills). If it were that easy, why would Harry Reid have worked so hard - and so successfully - to bribe Senators Landrieu (D-La), Lincoln (D-Ark) and Nelson (D-Neb)? Why would he have caved in to the demands of Connecticut’s Joseph Lieberman and discarded the public option much to the chagrin of his House colleagues?

A victory for Scott Brown would represent the Gettysburg of the Obama Administration - its high water mark, its tipping point.

But even more corrosive for Obama and the Democrats is the knowledge that nobody is safe from Republican assault. If the GOP can win a Senate seat in the People’s Republic of Massachusetts, it can win anywhere, anytime, against anyone. Long term Democratic incumbents from largely Republican districts would have to rethink their loyalty to Reid and Pelosi. Particularly in the House, it will be ever more difficult to round up majorities for Administration bills. Politicians will start running for cover and hiding in the cloakrooms.

Democrats will try to spin their defeat by blaming their candidate, Martha Coakley, for not campaigning hard enough. They will say that they lost because their base did not turn out and that the solution is to pass ever more radical legislation in the hopes of rekindling their fervor. But losing Massachusetts, on top of Virginia and New Jersey, will convince even the most loyal Democrat that the handwriting is, indeed, on the wall.

For all of these reasons, please make an effort today to telephone or e-mail any friends, family or colleagues you know in Massachusetts to urge them to come out and vote for Scott Brown. There is so very much at stake!

3652  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: January 17, 2010, 02:51:47 PM
"On Tuesday, we'll have a reading on whether that complacency is justified. It may not be definitive; barely two in 10 voters voted in the primaries, and turnout, especially if it is short on independents, could render the outcome a road test for each party's get-out-the-vote machinery."

Doesn't this make one think we will be seeing another close call with endless legal challenges and murky counts and who knows what other shenanigans?

This article points out union's ability to get out their voters. 

I don't know how many "union" votes there are in Mass. but then one could thus ask about the timing of the recent sweetheart deal the legislatures just gave to the unions for the Federal health care bill.

It may not have been a coincidence.

3653  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Resolution process on: January 16, 2010, 01:29:51 PM
We keep hearing the Dems threaten to use resolution process to ram through the health care bonanza with 51 Senate votes instead of the usual 60 needed for normal bills.

So what is this process?  If I read this correctly the process used multiple times since around 1980 (passed in 1974) is meant to *control* budgets not *explode* them with a takeover of one seventh of the economy.
3654  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Health Thread (nutrition, medical, longevity, etc) on: January 15, 2010, 12:23:48 PM
I don't know.  Is taking advantage of an endless stream of beautiful women offerring up everything to a healthy male an addiction, poor judgement or simply inability to say no to raging hormonal juices?

I guess if the psycho-babalists (who are happy to sell books, give therapy for this "ailment" in return for cash) can make a case that this behavior is some sort of disease for a healthy male to want to have sex with beautiful women than I guess it gives tiger an out too.

Frankly, if all men had this situation I think "sex addiction" would be as prevalent as obesity.

You know what a few have admitted about the fooling around that goes on in baseball.  Reports over the years have suggested very few baseball players don't have their girlfriends in the various cities.
3655  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Government Programs, spending, budget process on: January 15, 2010, 10:41:31 AM
Well I guess the latest deal made between "law" makers and the unions involving their so called "cadillac plans" shows that donations to the Democrats pays off in great dividends and makes good business sense.

"Wall Street is a glutton for punishment".  There are the Soros of the world - the true believers etc but the rest is simply an investment in the party that holds power.  The NYC insiders know that DC has to do its political grandstading.  But the real deals are made in secret behind closed doors.   Their bribes work obviously.

There is no end to the outrage.  There never will be.
3656  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: January 15, 2010, 09:39:27 AM
This sound like....
Classic Clayton Christensian.
The 6'10" pituitary giant from Harvard and his "innovative disruption" that Gilder was so fond of.

There is no question the conservative talking heads are scared to death that the tea party will evolve/morph into a separate movement apart from the GOP.  The Hannities the Limbaughs the Levins are incensed at the idea the party will draw away from their power base.

I am not so sure I would mind if it did but more likely than not it would simply be shooting ourselves in the foot by *dividing* a group that would vote against Democrats.
3657  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: The Power of Word on: January 13, 2010, 10:25:59 AM
I am glad I didn't offend you.  I didn't intend to although I could see how my angry post could have.
It says a lot about your character that you took it in stride.
Hopefully without being intrusive I do admit I am interested in your political views.
I may or may not agree.
But if I disagree I am still interested because I don't understand liberals, Jewish or not.
Perhaps if you are one you could help me understand the values.
I don't mean to burden you with this and you could just refuse.
On the other hand I think it is good for the message board if we have diversity of thought.
If we all simply agree than we cannot learn.
3658  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Humor/WTF on: January 12, 2010, 03:33:30 PM
While in the hospital discussing new regulations I joked I would go to the bathroom here so I don't have to waste a toilet flush at home and get taxed for a flush.
Someone countered it would be called the "crap tax".

Now I would call all taxes crappy but this is a first.
3659  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Economics on: January 12, 2010, 12:58:17 PM
"Public-sector unions have a growing influence in state and federal governments, and in the overall labor movement, but they are a relatively recent phenomenon"

I am glad someone else has posted this topic which I have noted before on this board.

I've asked a few times before why it makes sense that people who work for the government can turn around and unionize and tell elected officials how much they should make and benefits they should get.

Instead of serving us we are serving them.

I also posted about a patient of mine who retired last year from the NJ TPK "Authority" and then shows up in my office recently with a disability form.  I asked in honest amazement what he was talking about.  He was not disabled and indeed had been working till he voluntarily retired just before.  His answer was that a friend told him he could get more money this way than from retirement.

I asked was he claiming disability for his seizure disorder and he said yes.  I noted he hadn't had a seizure for many years and it never prevented him from working before.

I came right and told him flatly no I will not sign the form and this is why this country goes broke, this is why everyone hires illegals, or sends jobs overseas.  He agreed with me.

The concept that retirement is an entitlement the same as free speech, legal rights has got to go.

Double dipping is rampant.

Everyone knows that civil servant retirees who retire in their 50s go and get second jobs.  Some of these second jobs the proverbial double and triple dipping is rampant.

My Federal employee relatives love to speak of being able to retire soon.

Of course on the backs of those of us who work in the private sector.

Yet they are happily for health care for all, and all the rest of the liberal crap.  As always as long as they don't suffer for it.
If I hear them speak one more time about "green" this or that.....

3660  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: January 12, 2010, 10:24:23 AM
I found it fascinating to see Blacks on the cable shows vehemently disagreeing on Reid's comments.


I don't think I ever recall Blacks publically showing so much disagreement.

This proves they are not one block.

This proves they are willing to come out and publicaly disagree even when it is a Democrat they are speaking of.

Probably there are many who felt this way all along.  Perhaps it is only now we hear from so many more African Americans rather the darm MSM running and getting opinions from sharptons and Jacksons etc as though THEY speak for all Blacks.

If only Republicans can reach out to Blacks and LEGAL Latinos and convince them what I see as a truth that they are mistakenly letting the Democrat party hijack THEIR rights, their futures by giving it away to illegals and having  Pres who seems fit to down our country overseas and give away our soverienty to the UN, other nations, and his own delusions of megalomania.

The United States is their country too.  Not the governments.  Not the Democratic party.  Not Obama's.
It is not Obamas right to give us away.

If the Republicans can work on this type of approach then I believe we can win back Blacks to the party of Lincoln.

Why in the world are Blacks standing by and letting the Dems give away their country to illegals predominantly Latinos?

Wake up.
3661  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Mark McGuire on: January 11, 2010, 03:43:56 PM
Well at least he is honest.    He seems like a geniunely good person.  I remember someone telling me he was quite gracious signing an autograph for a young relative even while being asked/distrubed during dinner at a restaurant with his family (he reportedly has a brother bigger than him). 

The "steroid era" as he puts it, not only admits his but basically says steroid use was rampant among all/most players.

It may still be.  I don't know.

I used to be a big buff on baseball stats.  Should he be in the Hall.  I don't know.  He would have been a great home run hitter anyway (I think) though he certainly wouldn't have hit 70 any more than Sosa would have broken 60 or Bonds would have hit 73.

Now if only I could get the music industry admit to all the lies &they all sing stolen lyrics and they are all a bunch of lying low lives....Sorry, I am bitter...

****In a statement released by the St. Louis Cardinals, McGwire said that he began using steroids in the late 1980’s and used them “on occasion throughout the 1990’s,” including the 1998 season, when McGwire captivated the nation by hitting 70 home runs to break the all-time single season record of 61 held by Roger Maris.

McGwire’s statement comes as he prepares to return to baseball as the hitting coach for the Cardinals, the team he played for when he set the home run record.

“Now that I have become the hitting coach for the St. Louis Cardinals,” McGwire said, “I have the chance to do something that I wish I was able to do five years ago. I never knew when, but I always knew this day would come. It’s time for me to talk about the past and to confirm what people have suspected. I used steroids during my playing career and I apologize.”

McGwire said that he briefly used steroids in the off-season before the 1990 season and then resumed using them after he was injured in 1993. McGwire retired after an injury-marred 2001 season, in which he played in only 97 games and hit .187.

“I wish I had never touched steroids,” he said in the statement. “It was foolish and it was a mistake. I truly apologize. Looking back, I wish I had never played during the steroid era.”

McGwire is one of dozens of players from the past two decades who have been tied to the use of performance-enhancing drugs. Last year it was revealed that Sammy Sosa, who dueled with McGwire for the home run record in 1998, tested positive for performance-enhancig drugs in 2003.

“I’m sure people will wonder if I could have hit all those home runs had I never taken steroids,” McGwire’s statement read. “I had good years when I didn’t take any and I had bad years when I didn’t take any. I had good years when I took steroids and I had bad years when I took steroids. But no matter what, I shouldn’t have done it and for that I’m truly sorry.”

McGwire’s statement confirmed what had widely assumed within baseball and what has damaged McGwire’s chances in the last four years of balloting for the Hall of Fame; in none of them, did he come anywhere near the number of votes he needed for induction.****
3662  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: January 11, 2010, 02:34:13 PM
Dylan Ratigan from MSNBC has been railing against Geitner like crazy.  Calling for his head on a platter.
I heard him on the radio yesterday.
Go to this site and click on AIG spot and listen:
3663  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Hillary in 2016 she would be same age as RR on: January 11, 2010, 01:17:13 PM
"Two months ago, Mrs Clinton answered, straight-faced, with a flat "no" when asked if she would ever run for president again, even adding that "it never crosses my mind".

Well if we learned anything from the Clintons there is nothing they say that can be believed.

*****Home News World News North America USASmart money is on Hillary Clinton for 2016
Hillary Clinton was written off as a failed presidential candidate who would never have another run at the White House. Not any more, writes Toby Harnden in Washington.
Toby Harnden's American Way
Published: 6:33PM GMT 19 Dec 2009
 US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Photo: EPA
Driving past the White House the other day, my eye was caught by the bumper sticker on the shiny black Toyota Prius in front of me. It read: "We love you Hillary - Clinton for President, 2016".

A year ago, I'd have snorted at the slogan and kept my distance from the vehicle - judging the driver to be a delusional Clintonite diehard still desperately fighting the reality that the former First Lady's presidential aspirations were history.

Barack Obama makes world believe in politics again, claims top DemocratNow, the person behind that wheel seems to be on the money. Having elected Barack Obama amid near national euphoria, America is experiencing something akin to buyer's remorse.

Obama's popularity is the lowest of any American president at the end of his first year in office since polling began. Yet as his approval ratings have nose-dived, those of his Secretary of State have curved elegantly upwards.

A recent poll by the Clarus Research Group found that Hillary Clinton had a 75 per cent approval rating compared to 51 per cent for the man who defeated her in their epic battle for the Democratic nomination.

These are very early days to handicap 2016 but it's already clear that she has gone from being the supposedly inevitable 2008 nominee who had blown her one big chance as odds-on favourite to be the next Democratic president.

When Mrs Clinton accepted the job of Secretary of State many of her supporters feared she was falling into a trap. Fearing that she could be a rival source of power from Capitol Hill, Obama calculated she would be less of a threat if he brought her inside his tent.

The downsides for the former First Lady were obvious. She would give up her cherished seat as Senator for New York, which gave her an independent power base. Her voice on domestic policy would be silenced.

And her fortunes would inevitably be linked to the man whom she fervently believed was not up to the top job.

It is a sign of Mrs Clinton's astuteness that she said yes and now finds herself ideally placed to succeed Mr Obama or, in the increasingly plausible scenario that he becomes a one-term president, the Republican who ousts him in 2012.

During the past year, Mrs Clinton has done just what she did when she entered the Senate in 2001 - knuckled down to the hard grind of policy while building relationships with wary sceptics.

The woman who was one of the most polarising figures in American politics now has a glowing 65 per cent approval rating among Independents and healthy 57 per cent among Republicans.

Even sworn enemies on the Right marvelled at her toughness in refusing to concede to Obama until the bitter end in the summer of 2008 and now view her as more hawkish than the president.

Mrs Clinton, moreover, has lived in Arkansas and won over conservatives in upstate New York as well as trouncing Obama in states like West Virginia and Pennsylvania - establishing a connection with Middle America that has eluded the president.

Though Obama trumpeted the notion that he was appointing a "team of rivals" to his Cabinet, Mrs Clinton has been instrumental in making his foreign policy team one of the most harmonious in memory by striking up a firm friendship with Robert Gates, the canny Defence Secretary chief held over from the Bush administration.

In the eight administrations Gates has served in, no two Pentagon and State Department heads have been as close. After the poisonous relations between advisers to Donald Rumsfeld and Colin Powell, it is a startling turnaround.

The alliance between Clinton and Gates - who both argued for a robust troop increase from the outset - helped to stiffen Obama's spine over Afghanistan.

Mrs Clinton can afford to be assiduously loyal because her critique of Obama - "a lot of talk, no action" is how she acidly described him in March last year - is already out there and increasingly resonant. She now has unassailable credentials in the one area where she appeared weak in 2008 - foreign policy.

She has been able to stay out of the contentious debates over health care, Wall Street bailouts and the spiraling deficit while her husband, confounding many, has been a low-key apparent model of propriety since she took over at Foggy Bottom.

Two months ago, Mrs Clinton answered, straight-faced, with a flat "no" when asked if she would ever run for president again, even adding that "it never crosses my mind".

Perhaps that patently implausible denial was the surest indication of all that Mrs Clinton is better placed than ever to become America's first female president - and she knows it.*****
3664  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / yet the population is exploding on: January 11, 2010, 12:09:50 PM
""some 3.4 million more Americans moved from California to one of the other 49 states than moved to California from another state."

Well if this is true we must put this in context to the overall population of California.  NO ONE who has a brain would suggest the pop of California has gone down between 1990 and 2007.

Looking at the Census of 1990 the population was 29,760,021.  In 2000 it was 33,871,648.
A Census estimate for 2008 is 36,756,666.  Thus DESPITE NET 3.4 million people moving from California to another state than moving to California from another state the population has gone up roughly 7 million people.

So the conclusion is there are 3.4 million plus 7 million new people or 10.4 million NEW people in this state who must have:
1) been born there
2) come to California from another country

No one disputes the state is in complete financial trouble and on the verge of ruin. 

Yet we have the liberal and politically correct crowd who tell us there is a net economic gain (somehow) of immigration (legal and illegal).

How can any rational person reconcile the claims and the facts?

The vast majority of the increase in population in California MUST be from illegals and their offspring.  Based on Census own numbers there is no other explanation.  I doubt much of the increase is from legal immigration from other countries.

And it is highly unlikely the birth rate of citizens (not including automatic "citizens of those who come here illegally) is high enough to add anything much to the increase in population numbers.

Thus here is evidence that illegals are *contributing* to bankrupting California.
They are not the sole cause but in addition to the liberal government programs that exist and are expanded on State and National levels we have a state that appears to be ready to implode and declare bankruptcy.

I have no problem confiscating 90% if all the wealth of all liberals in show business to pay down the debt.
3665  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: January 11, 2010, 09:51:16 AM
"PS:  I think the fact that white American voted for BO had a very powerful effect on black America's perception of white America that has the potential for a deep paradigm shift."

Could you explain a little more detail what you mean?  I think I read you but could you clarify?

There is nothing more I, and I believe, all Republicans would like, than to have more Blacks come on board with us.
If only they would look at what I believe is the larger context rather than the quick "we'll give you quick cash and benes now" with the underlying but *unspoken* truth that you will become and thus remain OUR servants - meaning the Dem party and the government.

Why can't Blacks see themselves as field hands for governement?

Are there any Blacks on this board?

I hope I don't offend anyone but this seems to me a letigimate question.

3666  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: January 10, 2010, 06:10:09 PM
Answers to questions
That is why I am not for a strictly conservative platform.  I don't think it can win.  That is why I think strict conservatism/Reaganism is dead.  Some feel it was the cans trying to be democrats during the W years that did it.  Not strict conservative.
Perhaps they are right.  I really can't figure it all out.

It does give me some hope when i see some Blacks on Glenn Beck speaking about conservative values - how refreshing.
If only we could convince more of this group that they would be better off in the long run if they embrace this rather than let crats literally give their country away like they are doing.  I can only wonder that many Blacks are so engrained to "even" the score for past injustices that they are now (IMO) shooting themselves in the feet while they are trying to get even with Whites.

But I digress, and back to your points,

Yes Democrats are winning the war on demographics by confiscation and bribery.

It seems most of the world has been moving towards freedom and capitalism so I meant in those terms crats are on the wrong side.

But you are right, I may have miscontrued his point -
We in this country are now moving away from freedom and capitalism and  yes what Charles Blow claims appears to be true.  It appears the Cans are on the wrong side of the trends you point out.

Actually if Bama had his way he would abolishment the concept of *country* altogether and there would be one world government that would control everything and everybody.  And in his mind, ideally, he would be the ONE running it.

To me this is plainly obvious.  I don't know how many others either don't seem to get it or frankly simply agree with the "plan" and therefore he still maintains some degree of popularity.

3667  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Well the author is from the NYT on: January 09, 2010, 12:14:06 PM
I think the liberals are on the wrong side of history.  Have they ever heard of capatilism?  Democracy?  Freedom?

What makes this guy decide that socialism, gigantic control of every aspect of our lives by government, endless expansion of entitlements, giving up American soveriegnty is on the side of history?

These things were already tried and mostly failed.
3668  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: The Power of Word on: January 09, 2010, 10:47:43 AM
My anger was meant for the writer not Rachel.
And yes - I made a logical conclusion the writer is a liberal.
I would be totally shocked if she wasn't.
I have had to hear this stuff from liberals all the time.

I believe it is this kind of rationalization that causes many of my fellow Jews to think it OK to believe in socialism.
And if they choose to do so then go ahead.

But I don't don't want it forced on me or this country.

I have liberal relatives that drive me crazy with their socialistic views.  It is no coincidence a couple of them are Federal government employees BTW.

I mean no offense to Rachel and I hope my "cyberage" if you want to call it that does not keep her from posting as I enjoy her posts.

That said I still believe in what I posted.  Now if the writer turns out to not be a liberal with a socialist bent I will apologize.  But till then.  And I would be shocked.
3669  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: The Power of Word on: January 08, 2010, 02:03:58 PM
Thanks for your post.  This gives me the perfect opportunity to voice my fatigue with Jewish "do gooders".  I am sorry, but below IS how I feel. 

"She had found satisfaction in helping others Originally, she had hoped to have her paintings hanging in the Met, or her novels becoming bestsellers, but had ended up writing cookbooks read by thousands. But it wasn't the fame or fortune that brought her happiness. At the end of her introduction/personal history, she summed up a thought that rings true for humanity. She concluded that "to be of use, to have the opportunity to impart information and skills that serve to enrich people's daily lives – this is what matters most to me." Simply put, she had found satisfaction in helping others."

That's fine.  She dreamed and pursued her own fame and fortune and later decided this was not rewarding and than sought personal gratification helping others - I presume now that she is personally financially secure.

But why do liberal Jews think it wonderful to tax, confiscate and spend other people's monies to, in their deluded thinking, help the "poor" with ever increasing entitlements.

If one wants to get rich and later give it a way as a mitzvos that is "nice" and their right and privilege.  But when we start talking modern day versions of Karl Marx than as I've said before I part ways. 

I already work several months a year, toiling like a slave to have money confiscated and given away by liberals who use tax money to buy themselves votes.  I've had enough.  I am tired.

As for me they can shove their make love, and lets all be freinds and lovers, up their you know whats.

Many of these same people are pure hypocrits.  Others don't seem to mind they are hurting the lives of many for their perceived good deeds.

We part ways.

I can be a good person but I don't need to forced to be a F.. saint or a masochist.

Enough is enough.

Frankly such liberals have lost me.  Mitvohs my ass.

It's time to speak up and stick it back in the liberals faces before they destroy this country - if not too late.
3670  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: January 08, 2010, 11:45:40 AM
I don't know the name of the guy they have on Fox who is going around the country asking people if they are for the health care bill.
Most, if not all the people it seems who are for it appear to be students (who aren't yet in the real world toiling to pay for all these entitlements) or people who seem to think it will be free for them.
Yes "the govenernment" should provide health care to everyone.
"No one should be without this right".
"Well who else is going to pay for it if not the rich".

This is the mentality of what Republicans are up against.
This gigantic expectation of entitlements.  This gigantic sense that someone else should pay for it and these people will sit back and reap the benefits.

I don't know if there is a good answer to this.  Until there is the country will forever be divided between those who want all these things and others to pay for it, and those who do pay for it.

I couldn't believe Lou Dobbs was on OReilly saying we should grant some sort of amnesty to the illegals here since they and their children are already here.  Pay a fine, learn English, get on some path to citizenship.  I guess we are screwed. 
The thought of another 12 to 20 million mostly democrats who will continue the viscious cycle of entitlements.  And they were both saying we should cap the number of first degree relatives they will bring in with them at perhaps one or two -  OMG - now we are talkinga bout 24 to 60 million new people almost all crats!!  And we all know the crats are for big gov, big entitlements, and socialism in general.

It may already be too late.  I don't know.
3671  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Caution: phD on: January 08, 2010, 10:48:04 AM
When listening to medical advise from PhDs be careful.

Sometimes what they see in the labe does not jive with reality.
They are not the ones treating people.

Case in point:

"""Typical dose: One to two daily supplements (each containing 30 billion organisms), taken at the onset of diarrhea. Continue for one week after symptoms stop. To prevent antibiotic-related diarrhea, take the supplements during antibiotic therapy and for at least one week afterward.

Important: To ensure optimal effectiveness of the antibiotic, do not take it at the same time of day you are taking the probiotic.""""

So which is it?

It is amazing how the legaleze experts spend their careers going after pharm companies for a one in a million rare drug reaction yet we have all these know it alls all over the airwaves hawking their "natural" products with complete freedom to make all kinds of medical claims for cures to cancer, Alzheimers, prostate health, colon health, heart health, brain health, weight loss, sex health, joint health.  Most of it pure nonsense quakery and fraud to make a buck.

Yet that is ok .  But let a FDA approved drug turn out to cause a rare reaction and the response to that is outrage.

To me this is amazing.  Yet not a peep.

Hey the media makes billions from the advertising from these quacks.  So what do they care?

I am off my soap box.
3672  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Dogs are Gods gift for humanity. on: January 07, 2010, 02:13:35 PM
True story:
Both my wife Katherine and one of our three dogs have diabetes and are on insulin.

Yesterday my dog Buckwheat started shaking and having a hypoglycemic reaction.
Katherine fed her these dried chicken chips from the pet store and the dog soon seemed better.

Than Katherine started getting shakey and having a low blood sugar reaction.
Buckwheat ran and came back with a chicken chip and dropped it in Katherine's lap.

I love dogs.
3673  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Government Programs, spending, budget process on: January 05, 2010, 10:38:42 AM
I have had a few people say they are being told more and more that people who supported Bama are now admitting they were wrong about him.

This is purely anecdotal but I hope the tide has turned.
3674  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: January 05, 2010, 10:36:01 AM
I must admit I have called Rush a blow hard and sometimes he is just that.

But I was worried when he was reportedly in the hospital.
The thought of losing him is the thought of losing this country to liberals.

I don't always agree with him but I feel that we need voices like him to preserve this country or we are lost.
As yet there are no politicians who can do what he does.  There is no one on the horizon who can help us get us back to where we are track to stay the greatest place on the planet.

Liberals are dead set on giving it all away - for votes. for power, for their own enrichment.
3675  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Government Programs, spending, budget process on: January 05, 2010, 10:30:40 AM
I can only pray we get someone who is a spokesman for the Americans who are still probably slightly in the majority who have to pay for all this abuse of the "system" and hence them before they become the minority.  This critical tipping point seems nearer and nearer.

There is no question in my mind this is part of the grand design of the people who chose Bama as their One spokesperson.
Make no mistake he believes in this socialistic agenda fervently.
He only pretends to believe in the American just enough to hold onto power.

He is only coming out with a big mouth now on terrorism in words only and only precisely because he IS falling in the polls and he knows he is vulnerable on this.  Don't think for one second this guy is tough on terror.

But I think I preach to the choir here unfortunately. Except for Fox and talk radio this country is screwed.

3676  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / I just don't get it on: January 04, 2010, 12:27:36 PM
One in eight Americans now receives food stamps, including one in four children


But I just don't get it. 

We have illegals coming here by the millions and finding work and yet we have people who ?are Americans (some probably are also illegal) who claim they cannot find any job at all?

Why is this NEVER addressed by the mainstream propaganda media??

Yet we have foreigners going to our schools, getting Medicaid and Medicare - I think I know how they do it - the have relatives who come here and work or own businesses and they put their relatives on a payroll claiming payroll taxes and then later they get them Medicare.

Yet Americans cannot find a job.

And the liberal answers to everything.  Tax and give out more handouts.

3677  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Nuclear War, WMD issues on: January 02, 2010, 11:45:49 AM
NYTimes.comReport an ErrorTimes Topics > People > I > Ivins, Bruce E.Sign in to Recommend
E-MAILBruce E. Ivins
Usamriid/ReutersBruce Ivins, 62, died of an apparent suicide on July 29, 2008, after learning that federal prosecutors were preparing to indict him on murder charges in the 2001 anthrax attacks that left five people dead.

To some of his longtime colleagues and neighbors, the charges against him marked a startling and inexplicable turn of events for a churchgoing, family-oriented germ researcher known for his jolly disposition.

For more than three decades, Dr. Ivans had worked with some of the world’s most dangerous pathogens and viruses, trying to find cures in case they might be used as a weapon.

Dr. Ivins, the son of a pharmacist from Lebanon, Ohio, who held a doctorate in microbiology from University of Cincinnati, spent his entire career at the elite, Army-run laboratory that conducted high-security experiments into lethal substances like anthrax and Ebola.


He turned his attention to anthrax — putting aside research on Legionnaire’s disease and cholera — after the 1979 anthrax outbreak in the Soviet city of Sverdlovsk, which killed at least 64 after an accidental release at a military facility.

Dr. Ivins was among the scientists who benefited from the post September 11 surge in federal funding for research on potential biological weapons, as 14 of the 15 academic papers he published since late 2001 were focused on possible anthrax treatments or vaccines. He even worked on the investigation of the anthrax attacks, although this meant that he, like other scientists at the Army’s defensive biological laboratory at Fort Detrick, Md., was scrutinized as a possible suspect.

Dr. Ivins and his wife, Diane Ivins, raised two children in a modest Cape Cod home in a post-World War II neighborhood right outside Fort Detrick, and he could walk to work.

He was active in the community, volunteering with the Red Cross and serving as the musician at his Roman Catholic church. He showed off his music skills at work, too, playing songs he had written about friends who were moving to new jobs.

In the weeks before his death, Dr. Ivins’ behavior became increasingly erratic. At a group counseling session at a psychiatric center he announced that he had bought a bulletproof vest and a gun as he contemplated killing his co-workers at the nearby Army research laboratory.

3678  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / "state actor"? on: January 02, 2010, 11:40:45 AM
"state actor"

Does anyone know what he is talking about by this phrase?

Does this mean someone who works for the State Dept., the government in general, or an actor like J.W. Booth?

Their was a documentary about this case on one of the cable shows I don't remember which one regarding the suspect.
Colleagues and friends argued there was abosuletly no hint he was thinking along these lines.
The evidence was all circumstantial, and suggestive though not completely conclusive beyond a reasonable doubt IMO.

This guy should have had the same laywers falling all over themselves to defend the 911 bombers.
3679  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: January 01, 2010, 05:36:23 PM
Healthcare take-over

A doctor today told me heard that NJ has a new law that doctors must do some free charity care.
I don't know if it is true.

If I didn't have my problems with Katherine I would definitely leave the state if that were true.

Can anyone imagine a government edict to a single group of citizens telling them they either work for free or what?

Go to jail?  Lose your license to work in your profession?

Yet bankers are being given billions and obviously pilliging God knows how much of it. 
And I have to now pay for the cadillac care of union auto workers while I may be forced to work for free.

No one will feel sorry for doctors so I am not kidding myself thinking I would get any sympathy.

My point is let this be a warning for the rest of this country as to what Obama and Pelosi and the liberals have in store for them as well as us physicians.

I guess the only ones safe are lawyers, union members and Federal government employees.

3680  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The NEJM and abortion on: December 31, 2009, 10:46:21 AM

A topic close to your heart.
I think you can see in full bloom the liberal bias of a frequent contributer to NEJM.
Notice he cannot just give us the legal perspective but he has to shove at the end his true political bias.
Many of the public health people from the giant liberal "think tanks" of liberal academia are the true architects of this huge health care legislation that began 16 years ago and lied dorment while awaiting the right political moment to re-emerge its cancerous (IMHO) metastesis.  Liberals just cannot help themselves, they seem to have some disease that drives them to tell the rest of us what we ought to do.

Notice, not one comment about poor women should not be getting pregnant to start with just that it is their right to have taxpayers pay for their abortions.

Anyway it is people like this, behind the scenes who crafted the legislation.  I wonder how much this "humanitarian" makes?

***from the publishers of
the New England
Journal of Medicine
Abortion Politics and Health Insurance Reform
Posted by NEJM • December 2nd, 2009 • Printer-friendly
George J. Annas, J.D., M.P.H.

President Barack Obama has made it clear that he does not want abortion politics to sabotage health care reform. In his September 10 speech about health care to a joint session of Congress, he said, “Under our plan, no federal dollars will be used to fund abortions.” Nonetheless, the centrality of abortion in U.S. politics makes it likely that abortion funding will play a major role in determining whether there is any health care reform law at all. The current abortion controversy concerns the Stupak amendment, whose presence or absence from the final bill may determine the votes of enough members of Congress to determine the outcome. This makes it critical to understand both this amendment and the current state of the law on federal funding for abortion.

The Stupak amendment provides that “No funds authorized or appropriated by this Act . . . may be used to pay for any abortion or to cover any part of the costs of any health plan that includes coverage of abortion, except in the case where a woman suffers from a physical disorder, physical injury, or physical illness that would, as certified by a physician, place the woman in danger of death unless an abortion is performed, including a life-endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy itself, or unless the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest” (italics added).

The House passed this amendment by a vote of 240 to 194, with 64 Democrats voting in favor (the House health care bill itself passed 220 to 215). Many have blamed the Catholic bishops who lobbied fervently for passage of the Stupak amendment. More influential, however, has been the previously secret fundamentalist Christian political leadership group known variously as the Family or the Fellowship, which includes among its members both of the amendment’s main sponsors, Bart Stupak (D-MI) and Joe Pitts (R-PA).1

The Stupak amendment has been defended as merely continuing the practice created by the Hyde amendment. That amendment, named after the late Congressman Henry Hyde (R-IL), which has been attached to every Health and Human Services Appropriations Act passed since 1976 (and has been added to appropriations legislation for the Defense Department, the Indian Health Service, and federal employees’ health insurance plans) prohibits the use of federal funding for “any abortion” or for any “health benefits coverage that includes abortion,” unless the pregnancy is the result of “rape or incest” or “would, as certified by a physician, place the woman in danger of death unless an abortion is performed.” Under the Hyde amendment, states may use their own funds to finance abortion services through their Medicaid programs, and 17 states currently do so.

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled on the government funding question twice. The first case, in 1977, involved a Connecticut regulation that limited state Medicaid funding to “medically necessary” abortions, thus excluding those not necessary to preserve a woman’s life or health. The Court ruled that women have a constitutional right to choose to have an abortion, but the state has no obligation to pay for the exercise of this right and may constitutionally encourage women to continue their pregnancies to term by providing funding for childbirth and not abortion. The state may not constitutionally create obstacles to abortion, but it has no obligation to remove obstacles, such as poverty, that are not of its own making.2

Three years after the Connecticut decision, the Court upheld the Hyde amendment, which prohibited federal funding for medically necessary abortions.3 Under this ruling, even low-income women who would have devastating health outcomes if they continued a pregnancy could not have an abortion paid for by Medicaid. In both cases, the Court ruled that the government could make “a value judgment favoring childbirth over abortion and [implement] that judgment by the allocation of public funds.” There is no constitutional requirement for the federal government to fund any abortion. Federal funding is a political question to be addressed by Congress.

The current version of the U.S. Senate bill on health care reform, which Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) created by blending bills from two committees, does not contain the Stupak amendment but specifically excludes federal funding for abortions as prohibited by any federal law (including the Hyde amendment) that was in effect “6 months before the beginning of the plan year involved.” States must also ensure that “no federal funds pay or defray the cost” of abortion services in new health plans that cover abortion. Moreover, states are required to offer at least two plans in the proposed health insurance exchanges (where most people who currently lack coverage will purchase insurance): one that covers abortion services and one that does not. Nonfederal funds for abortion coverage in any plan must be segregated, and payment must be made separately, in an amount estimated by the secretary of health and human services, to cover this benefit.

The primary promoters of the Stupak amendment in the Senate, Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Sam Brownback (R-KS), who is also a member of the Family,1 would not vote for a health care reform bill even if it outlawed federal payments for all abortions because both men object to more government involvement in health care. Since 51 votes would be required for the Senate to adopt the amendment, it seems unlikely that it will be added to the Senate bill.

Three major questions have been raised about the House and Senate approaches: Do they fulfill Obama’s no-federal-funding promise? Do they follow the Hyde amendment “tradition”? And do they represent good health insurance policy?

As for the first question, the Senate version fulfills the President’s promise by requiring abortion funding to come from sources other than federal tax dollars. This aspect of the provision has been denigrated as a “bookkeeping trick,” but all payments involve bookkeeping. Even federal employees who pay for abortions with their government salaries are using funds that came from federal tax dollars. As for the second question, the Stupak amendment goes far beyond the Hyde amendment by prohibiting the use of federal tax dollars not only for abortion itself but also for any health plan available on the proposed exchanges that covers abortion. The goal is to limit access to abortion, even when no federal funds are being used for it.

The third question relates to public health policy. The Hyde amendment institutionalizes the moral view of some members of Congress that even medically necessary abortions should not be considered health care. This view, for example, led Congress to criminalize an abortion procedure without an exception for the health of the pregnant woman.4 These are the types of federal government intrusions into health care that opponents of public insurance plans usually decry.

President Obama is nonetheless on solid political ground in leaving for another day the toxic issue of federal funding for abortions. Should the current Senate bill get to conference committee, the Senate conferees should insist that their abortion-funding–neutral language be adopted in the final bill. The House conferees are unlikely to object. The Stupak amendment cannot be fairly termed a health care bill because it further restricts funding, and voting against it seems to me a reasonable response from senators and representatives who support social justice and equality between the sexes.***
3681  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / limerick on: December 30, 2009, 06:48:40 PM
There once was a Muslim from Nigeria
Who for fun joined Al Queda
He loved to kill Americans for sport
So he got right through the airport
With a bomb in his shorts
The dynamite fizzled
His testicles sizzled
And instead of a fundamentalist hero
He wound up a jailed zero.

There once was a man named Osama
Who had a good friend named Obama
The former sinned
The latter grinned
And the ACLU winned
The former drinks moletovs
The latter drinks beer
And Americans lived in fear
Our hero Biden
Came out of hiden
First to go thru a scanner
Our enemies cheered with laughter
At his latest gaffer
In Uncle Sam has never before
A leader not known the score
We will all wind up dead or poor.

3682  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / DINO on: December 28, 2009, 11:34:21 AM
This is the first time I heard this.  DINO - RINO we have - next is LINO (Libertarian in name only) - AINO - (American in name only) - OREO (we already know this one).

 OPINION: DECLARATIONS DECEMBER 26, 2009 'He Just Does What He Thinks Is Right' By PEGGY NOONAN
Cannon to the left of him, cannon to the right of him, cannon in front of him volley and thunder. That's our president's position on the political battlefield now, taking it from all sides. And the odd thing, the unique thing in terms of modern political history, is that no one really defends him, no one holds high his flag. When was the last time you put on the radio or TV and heard someone say "Open line Friday—we're talking about what it is we like best about Barack Obama!" When did you last see a cable talking head say, "The greatness of this man is as obvious as it is unnoticed"?

Is the left out there on the Internet and the airwaves talking about him? Oh, yes. They're calling him a disappointment, a sellout, a DINO—Democratic in name only. He sold out on single-payer health insurance, and then the public option. He'll sell you out on your issue too.

The pundits and columnists, dreadful people that they are, call him cold, weak, aloof, arrogant, entitled.

So let's denounce him again.

Wait—it's Christmas. Let's not. There are people who deeply admire the president, who work with him and believe he's doing right. This week, this column is their forum. They speak not for attribution to avoid the charge of suckupism.

We start with a note from an accomplished young man who worked with Mr. Obama on the campaign and in the White House. He reminded me this week of a conversation we'd had shortly before the president's inauguration. "I remember you asked me back in January if I loved my guy. And in light of all that's happened in this first year, I still do. Even more so. And I also have a strong sense—based not just on polls but on a lot of folks I've talked to who don't always pay attention to politics—that he DOES have that base of people who still love him too.

"It's hard to detect, because the part of the 'base' that's represented on cable and on blogs is so vocal (and by vocal I mean shrill), but it's there. I also read it in the letters he gets. Some of them are amazingly poignant and appreciative of what he's done and what he's doing. Some of them are tough—very tough—but still respectful and hopeful that he's doing the right thing. Even if they're unsure right now, they want him to succeed. . ."

He sees them as a kind of quiet majority, or at least quiet-but-large-group-within-the-electorate.

"[T]hey're not going to run out and defend him on the blogs or start screaming back at his detractors, because they know its fruitless and they're sick of all that Washington nonsense anyway." They want him to cut through the mess and "get things done for them. And they're willing to give him that chance. Still."

The president, he suggested, tends toward the long view and the broad view. "Here's what I know about him. He still has this amazing ability to tune out the noise from Washington, read the letters from the people, listen to their concerns, listen to his advisors, hear both sides, absorb all the information, and make the decision that he honestly feels is right for the country."

He does this "without worrying too much about the polls, without worrying too much about being a one-term president. He just does what he thinks is right. And that consumes a lot of his time. Most of it, in fact."

He is aware that Obama is "perceived as alternately too weak and too Chicago, too left and too right, too willing to compromise and too beholden to his majority, too detached and too much meddling in too many things." The administration needs "to do better in resetting the story and telling it the way we want it told." But "the fractured, petty, biased-towards-the-sensational media today makes that more difficult than ever before."

He knows now, he said, "how the Bushes and the Clintons must have felt," and wonders "if that just happens to all White Houses. I don't know. But I do know that we have some very big, very unique problems right now. And we live in a very cynical . . . time where it's difficult to maintain the benefit of the doubt as you're navigating through the storm." They're giving it their best. "Lots of good people are trying. We won't fix it all, but I think we'll succeed (and think that in some cases, we already have!) at fixing a good deal."

Another staffer spoke warmly of President Obama's warmth. "He's interested in who you are, and it's not manufactured." He sometimes finds himself briefing the president before events. "I know he's just come out of a meeting on Afghanistan" and maybe the next meeting isn't as important, but he wants to know who they are and where they're from and has a gift for "making them feel important."

"He's a young president, young in terms of youthful." Sometimes people come in to meet him and find "they came for a photo and he gives them a game" of pick-up basketball on the White House court. "Those are the things from a human perspective that make him so accessible. Accessible is the right word. He's emotionally available."

He is appreciative of his staff's efforts. "When you're working hard for your country and you know [he cares] it is huge." How does he show his thanks? "It's a little like a basketball game—'Thanks for that, I know what you did.' It's not a note or a pat or a call, it's a guy-to-guy thank you, 'That's cool, that's good.' You think, 'My coach got that I worked my ass off.'"

"As a person he is just an incredible human being who you can't help but love."

A third Obama staffer spoke of last week's senior staff dinner, at which the president went around the table and told each one individually "what they meant to him, and thanked the spouses for putting up with what they have to put up with." He marks birthdays by marching in with cakes. He'll walk around the White House, pop into offices and tease people for putting their feet on the desk. "Sometimes he puts his feet on the desk." He's concerned about much, but largely unruffled. "He's not taken aback by the challenges he has. He seems more focused than he's ever been. He's like Michael Jordan in that at the big moments everything slows down for him." He's good in the crunch.
I end with a story told to me by an old Reagan hand who, with another former Reagan administration official, was being given a private tour of the White House by Michelle Obama. This was last summer. Mrs. Obama led the two through the halls, and then they stopped by the Lincoln bedroom. They stood in the doorway, and then took a step inside, but went no deeper. Everything looked the same, but something was different. "We don't allow guests to stay in this room anymore," Mrs. Obama explained. She spoke of it as a place of reverence. They keep it apart, it's not for overnights.

Unspoken, but clearly understood by the Reagan hands, was: This is where he signed the Emancipation Proclamation. A true copy of it is here, on the desk. He signed it: "Abraham Lincoln." The Reagan hands were impressed and moved. It is fitting and right that the Lincoln bedroom be held apart. It always should have been. Good, they thought. Good.

Printed in The Wall Street Journal, page A11
Copyright 2009 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved

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3683  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Rants on: December 24, 2009, 11:25:50 AM
Maybe this is why Schwarzenegger is sucking up to history's greatest human being:

Seeks Obama’s Help for Deficit Relief (Update3) Share Business ExchangeTwitterFacebook| Email | Print | A A A
By Michael B. Marois and William Selway

Dec. 24 (Bloomberg) -- California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, anticipating a $21 billion budget deficit, plans to ask President Barack Obama to ease mandates and minimums on social programs to save as much as $8 billion.

The Republican governor plans to seek the relief, according to a California official who asked not to be identified because details haven’t been resolved. Instead of seeking one-time stimulus money or a bailout, the most-populous state wants the U.S. to reduce mandates and waive rules stipulating expenditures on programs such as indigent health care, the official said.

California is among states most affected by the economic recession. It has the lowest credit rating and recorded the nation’s second-highest rate of home foreclosures, trailing only Nevada. Unemployment peaked at 12.5 percent in October amid the loss of 687,700 jobs from the year before, when the jobless figure was 8 percent. Wealth declined as the stock market lost 40 percent of its value in 2008.

The White House is aware of news reports about a request from California but didn’t have any details or comment, said Dan Pfeiffer, Obama’s communications director.

“The problem is that there are no easy solutions left,” said Jean Ross, executive director of the California Budget Project, a Sacramento-based research group concentrating on issues facing the poor. “Where do you go to cut that doesn’t permanently compromise the level of public services that this state needs to remain economically competitive and to have some semblances of a safety net left for vulnerable populations.”

Taxes and Cuts

Schwarzenegger and lawmakers worked to close a record $60 billion gap from February through July with $32 billion in spending cuts, $12.5 billion of temporary tax increases, $8 billion of federal stimulus money and more than $6 billion of other one-time fixes.

California’s deficits show how local governments are being forced to chose between raising taxes or cutting more funding for schools, health care and other programs, even as the economy is emerging from the recession that began in December 2007. The nascent recovery has yet to produce any job gains, a drag on states that rely on income and retail sales taxes.

Nationally, 35 states and Puerto Rico expect to have $56 billion less next year than they will need to pay for all of their programs, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. In Nevada, Arizona and New Jersey, the difference amounts to more than one-quarter of their budgets, the conference said. Funds from the $787 billion federal economic stimulus bill enacted in February run out at the end of next year.

Last Chance

Schwarzenegger, 62, will detail his request for help when he delivers his annual State of the State address on Jan. 6 and unveils his budget on Jan. 8, his last chance to reshape California’s fiscal policies before he leaves office in January 2011 after seven years.

This time, Schwarzenegger’s arsenal of one-time accounting maneuvers he and lawmakers have previously used to temporarily paper over parts of the gap -- such as accelerating income-tax collections -- has been mostly depleted, making efforts to erase the latest $21 billion deficit more difficult.

The state also has struggled to implement cost-cutting measures that were part of the $85 billion spending plan approved in July. Courts blocked part of the budget that cut funding for home care for the disabled and another part that borrowed $800 million from an account that sets aside money for local transportation agencies.

‘Low-Hanging Fruit’

An accounting error means the state has to spend almost $1 billion more on schools than budgeted. Officials also underestimated the cost of health care for the poor by $900 million, and lawmakers failed to pass legislation to realize $1 billion less in anticipated prison spending.

Combined, the state faces a $6.3 billion gap in the current year and another $14.4 billion in the next.

“We’ve already gone after the low-hanging fruit and the medium-hanging fruit and the higher-hanging fruit, so it’s going to get tougher and tougher now to balance the budget,” Schwarzenegger told reporters in November.

The governor has said he won’t increase taxes again to close the gap. That means more cuts, complicated by mandated expenditures for programs such as Medicaid health-care for low- income residents. With reductions already made to programs for the poor, additional trims jeopardize those federal funds.

Biggest Issuer

“In terms of programmatic reductions, we have to keep an eye on the fact that in some areas -- be it education or health and human services -- if you run afoul of federal maintenance of efforts requirements, you risk the loss of federal dollars,” said Schwarzenegger’s budget spokesman, H.D. Palmer. “As tough as 2009, these factors are going to make 2010 even more challenging.”

The state was the biggest bond issuer this year, selling $36 billion of debt. It may come to market with at least $5 billion more of public-works obligations in the fiscal year that begins July 1, state Treasurer Bill Lockyer said.

California’s general-obligation debt rating from Moody’s Investors Service is Baa1, the company’s eighth-highest investment grade, and A from Standard & Poor’s, the sixth- highest. By comparison, Greece, the poorest member of the 16- nation euro region, is rated two steps higher at A2 by Moody’s and two lower at BBB+ by S&P.

“California, which is more than three times bigger than Greece, is running out of money,” T.J. Marta, chief market strategist at Marta On The Markets LLC, a financial-research firm in Scotch Plains, New Jersey, told Bloomberg Radio today.

Higher Interest Rates

A Standard & Poor’s/Investortools index of California state and local debt has returned 13.1 percent this year through Dec. 23, about 1.5 percentage points less than the national average.

Investors have demanded higher interest rates from California, compared with other borrowers. The state’s 10-year bonds yielded 4.6 percent by the end of last week, 1.51 percentage points more than top-rated municipal borrowers, according to Bloomberg indexes. Three months ago, that difference was as little as 1.06 percentage points. Greek 10- year bonds yield 5.72 percent, Ireland’s 4.78 percent and Spain’s 3.93 percent.

In California, “it’s never a quick budget, it’s always prolonged and when it’s prolonged the headlines get worse and spreads widen,” said Peter Hayes, who oversees $115 billion in municipal bonds for New York-based BlackRock Inc., the world’s largest asset manager.

Opposition to Cuts

Democrats, who control both chambers of the Legislature, are expected to oppose wholesale cuts to health and welfare programs. Such resistance, along with Republican opposition to tax increases, will be exacerbated as election-year politics heightens the partisan divide. Half of the state’s 120 Assembly and Senate seats go before voters in November.

Budgets and tax increases in California must be approved by a two-thirds majority, and Democrats are two votes short in the Senate and six in the Assembly.

“When you are looking at a deficit in the size we have, everything needs to be on the table,” Assembly Speaker Elect John Perez, a Democrat from Los Angeles, told reporters on Dec. 11. “The reality is that the likelihood of passing taxes in this environment is slim, but everything has to be on the table. We have to come up with a resolution to this budget crisis that asks everyone to sacrifice, not just the people that are in the greatest need.”

To contact the reporters on this story: Michael B. Marois in Sacramento at; William Selway in San Francisco at

Last Updated: December 24, 2009 11:49 EST
3684  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: December 23, 2009, 05:01:13 PM
"Logic is the dominant modality in only 10% of the population whereas, IIRC, emotion is the dominant modality for LOTS more people"

This would certainly explain the continued undying blind support for Obama from American Blacks.

I cannot understand their continued support for a man who is giving away their country just when at the same time proved they can reach the top if they want to.

Why do they support a party that is more interested in giving away our benefits to those who are recent and illegal arrivals as opposed to those who came here legally or are the descendants of those brought here in chains?

The Rebublican party needs to see this opening.  They need to show Blacks the bigger picture.  Forget exponentially increasing Black reliance on government.  Obama is doing more damage to Blacks by hurting their country, by increasing their reliance on doles than any conservative.

The One gives us the lines about education, about self reliance all the while promoting just the opposite.  That is because it is not about American Blacks.  For Obama it is about leading the world.  It is about socialism, one government, one leader, total world control.  He is the greatest megalomaniac since I don't know when.  Hitler?  Napolean?  Ghengis Khan?  Alexander?

I guess the difference is soft vs military force.  Not just soft tyrrany but "soft" world domination.
3685  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The United Nations/ US Sovereignty on: December 23, 2009, 04:45:45 PM
This is utterly remarkable.
The guy Bama is not our President working in the best interests of us.
He is a Manchurian President though he is well aware of what he is doing selling the US down the river unlike the movie wherein the guy's mind was controlled by outside forces.
3686  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Anti-semitism & Jews on: December 22, 2009, 04:05:25 PM
I lived in Boca for two and a half years.
One estimate was it was 70% Jewish.

I've seen Santa at Toojays in the off season.
How do you think he got that belly. smiley
3687  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / myhrovolds-to save the world?or our economy? on: December 22, 2009, 02:41:16 PM
What a nightmare for the libs!

For those who don't read drudgereport.  Acually Myhrvold was discussing this on Fareed Zakaria this past weekend.  Fareed asked him, so why is pumping sulfur into the atmosphere "good for us"?   Here is the theory.  Libs will trample all over themselves trying to shoot this down but it could (if it worked) completely negate any urgency to do cap and trade or any other unilateral disarming byt the "Bamas" (my new name for the radical libs, left, progressives or whatever name they change it to of the day).
3688  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: States Rights on: December 22, 2009, 01:35:34 PM
"Reid was buying the votes of senators whose understanding of the duties of representation does not rise above looting the nation for local benefits."

I assume some are looking at the Supreme Court angle at this.  Usurping some State's rights to buy off representatives from other states.

****Obama's dubious ‘wins’ in Copenhagen and Congress

By George Will | It was serendipitous to have almost simultaneous climaxes in Copenhagen and Congress. The former's accomplishment was indiscernible, the latter's was unsightly.

It would have been unprecedented had the president not described the outcome of the Copenhagen climate change summit as "unprecedented," that being the most overworked word in his hardworking vocabulary of self-celebration. Actually, the mountain beneath the summit — a mountain of manufactured hysteria, predictable cupidity, antic demagoguery and dubious science — labored mightily and gave birth to a mouselet, a 12-paragraph document committing the signatories to . . . make a list.

A list of the goals they have no serious intention of trying to meet. The document even dropped the words "as soon as possible" from its call for a binding agreement on emissions.

The 1992 Rio climate summit begat Kyoto. It, like Copenhagen, which Kyoto begat, was "saved," as Copenhagen was, by a last-minute American intervention (Vice President Al Gore's) that midwifed an agreement that most signatories evaded for 12 years. The Clinton-Gore administration never submitted Kyoto's accomplishment for ratification, the Senate having denounced its terms 95 to 0.

Copenhagen will beget Mexico City next November. Before then, Congress will give "the international community" other reasons to pout. Congress will refuse to burden the economy with cap-and-trade carbon-reduction requirements and will spurn calls for sending billions in "climate reparations" to China and other countries. Representatives of those nations, when they did not have their hands out in Copenhagen grasping for America's wealth, clapped their hands in ovations for Hugo Chavez and other kleptocrats who denounced capitalism while clamoring for its fruits.

The New York Times reported from Copenhagen that Barack Obama "burst into a meeting of the Chinese, Indian and Brazilian leaders, according to senior administration officials. Mr. Obama said he did not want them negotiating in secret." Naughty them. Those three nations will be even less pliable in Mexico City.

At least the president got a health-care bill through the Senate. But what problem does it "solve" (Obama's word)? Not that of the uninsured, 23 million of whom will remain in 2019. Not that of rising health-care spending. This will rise faster over the next decade.

The legislation does solve the Democrats' "problem" of figuring out how to worsen the dependency culture and the entitlement mentality that grows with it. By 2016, families with annual incomes of $96,000 will get subsidized health insurance premiums. Nebraska's Ben Nelson voted for the Senate bill after opposing both the Medicare cuts and taxes on high-value insurance plans — the heart of the bill's financing. Arkansas's Blanche Lincoln, Indiana's Evan Bayh and Virginia's Jim Webb voted against one or the other. Yet they support the bill. They will need mental health care to cure their intellectual whiplash.

Before equating Harry Reid to Henry Clay, understand that buying 60 Senate votes is a process more protracted than difficult. Reid was buying the votes of senators whose understanding of the duties of representation does not rise above looting the nation for local benefits. And Reid had two advantages — the spending, taxing and borrowing powers of the federal leviathan, and an almost gorgeous absence of scruples or principles. Principles are general rules, such as: Nebraska should not be exempt from burdens imposed on the other 49 states.

Principles have not, however, been entirely absent: Nebraska's Republican governor, Dave Heineman, and Republican senator, Mike Johanns, have honorably denounced Nebraska's exemption from expanded Medicaid costs. The exemption was one payment for Nelson's vote to impose the legislation on Nebraskans, 67 percent of whom oppose it.

Considering all the money and debasement of the rule of law required to purchase 60 votes, the bill the Senate passed might be the only bill that can get 60. The House, however, voted for Rep. Bart Stupak's provision preserving the ban on public funding of abortions. Nelson, an untalented negotiator, unnecessarily settled for much less. The House also supports a surtax on affluent Americans and opposes the steep tax on some high-value health insurance plans. So to get the bill to the president's desk, the House, in conference with the Senate, may have to shrug and say: Oh, never mind.

During this long debate, the left has almost always yielded ground. Still, to swallow the Senate bill, the House will have to swallow its pride, if it has any. The conference report reconciling the House and Senate bills will reveal whether the House is reconciled to being second fiddle in a one-fiddle orchestra.****

3689  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / "Lincoln weeps" on: December 22, 2009, 11:11:23 AM
"President Obama acknowledged this in April, when asked by a European reporter if he believes in American exceptionalism. The president's response: "I believe in American exceptionalism, just as I suspect that the Brits believe in British exceptionalism and the Greeks believe in Greek exceptionalism."
This is a longer more confusing way to simply say NO, I do not believe in American exceptionalism.

To think our own President would be able to say such a thing.  And get elected to power.  To stay in power.  To have a media that adores him.

It is all so incomprehensible to me.

Lincoln is not the only one weeping.  So do I and many Americans.  Is there enough of us left who care?

Who is the ONE that can save this country from a Manchurian candidate hell bent on destroying it?

The attempt to extend Medicare to those 55 and older, the closing of the "donut" hole is the most cynical disgusting way of trying to bribe back seniors who have been more and more as evidenced by polls dropping support of the ONE.

LIke I learned from my own personal ordeals there just is no one who cannot be bribed.  Even our own countrymen will be most happy to give away our future for a dole.

Not only do my personal travails make me weep, I have to watch the same thing happen to America.

And Obama is NOT honest.  Occasionally he lets slip out his true feelings.  The rest is just a gigantic con.

3690  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: December 22, 2009, 10:08:47 AM
And he was a moderate R, now called RINO.

Perhaps I am a Rino.  I don't know.


Do you actually think the Republicans can win by simply "going back to their roots?"

IMO such talk is only singing to the choir.  This alone will not move that party into power.  This alone will not appeal to the middle which cans need.

It seems to me the electorate keeps going back and forth from one party to the other because they don't like either one.

It always seems to boil down to the lesser of two evils come election time.

Just my opinion.  I am certainly no expert on this.
3691  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Rants on: December 22, 2009, 09:42:47 AM
 "In politics they always parade the photogenic family for what it brings in for votes"

True.  And in this case we all KNOW why he married Shriver.  It was obviously a designed step towards power from day one.

I wonder if we are finally rid of the Kennedys with the passing of the murderer who got away with it.

I wonder if Ahnold thinks he can be the next chosen one to carry on the Kennedy torch??
Perhaps that is why he is suddenly a gigantic liberal.  It is and always was all about him.  And only about the "people" for as long as that populist facade could garner him votes.

We know he won't go away.  He obviously needs the limelight.

3692  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Turncoatinater on: December 21, 2009, 09:44:36 AM
And now today he is on Drudge giving Obama an *A*.

And telling him to hang in there, he'll get it all done, etc. 

The Kennedys are that hypnotic???

I don't get it.

He must want to stay relevant and want a job.

there is something pathetic when a once charismatic principled man who lead by example is suddenly completely different with his values.  It just goes to show you he is more about himself then his ideas.  If you can't beat them join them I guess.
3693  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: December 21, 2009, 09:39:01 AM
"Voter fraud:  The ACORN takeover of Mn Secretary of State and Minneapolis vote count control provided the 60th vote with uneven counting standards applied to heavily liberal voting precincts."

Doug, not that it matters at this point but do you think Coleman was robbed of the election?
The msm of course is dead silent on this issue.
3694  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / PCPs are done as probably is our way of life. on: December 20, 2009, 03:57:06 PM
Dr. Rich is dead on.
Primary care physicians will die out and be replaced completely by nurses in a decade.
Already we are hearing not "consult your doctor" but consult your "health care provider".
What you will see is specialists using their extra dollars hiring nurse practitioners and physician assistents and taking all the primary care under their wing because they can make dollars off it.  Esp. so when their own reimbursements go down.

Patients will not see doctors for basic care - they will be treated by nurses.

Clayton Christensian pointed this out ten years ago with his disruption theories.  Of course he is from Harvard where all this is stuff is being seeded from anyway.

Primary care will not be strengthened but will be "dumbed down".  They will give prmary doctors a laughable 1-2% raise like that is going to do anything and all the while increase taxes from some other end to get the money and back at an even higher rate.

PCPs and doctors in general are already controlled and are de facto government employees - just with NO benefits.  Only edicts.

That said I am not sure why anyone would want to become a doctor at all and not just a primary care doctor.
Specialists will tell you medicine is not a pleasure anymore.

As for "even with a major Tea Party type of a groundswell".
I fear this will not happen.  I am not sure Obama is going down in polls so much because of his socialist agenda.  I think some of his drop in the polls is due to liberals who are annoyed he is NOT socialist enough.

It was a pleasure to have a woman who was born in Chechnia in the office the other day giving me cookies made there.
She said this is still the greatest country in the world.  I feel many of the Eastern Europeans do feel this way. It seemed when I was growing up this is what I would usually hear.  How could one not feel proud of one's country?  Now we have a President and government in general that has an intense visceral dislike of this country. 

I am not sure about the Asians and certainly I question many of the Latinos who come here and vote for handouts in droves.  OTOH there are many Latinos in the military which make me proud and grateful of them.   Some of the Africans I have as patients are hard working. If I see one more unmarried young mother who states everyone should get health care in this country.....the government should be providing it!!!!

The bottom line I guess is if they can come here and play a system that will give them handouts and benefits paid for by taxpayers they figure why not.
Only Eastern Europeans who were previously under totaltarism (sp?) seem to have the work ethic without the outstretched hand.  The Indians and Chinese have work ethic but also learn to play the system.

Just my anecdotal take.
Of course some would immediately claim I am a bigot and pig for even stating such observations.
How dare I state what I see?
3695  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / PhD computer prof. who I allege robbed us on: December 19, 2009, 02:38:52 PM
I took a few computer courses at University of Central Florida aournd 1999.  After we realized Katherine was getting robbed we niavely looked for a computer expert who could dig up evidence on our hard drives.  I called the school and asked my professor if he does that and he said he was too busy but he would put me in touch with someone else.  After around 2 or 3 more people said the same thing I eventually got a call back from this guy, John Joseph Leeson.  He agreed to "help" us do searches and came to our house to copy our drives.  It was a set up from day one.  The people robbing us were, we later realized, listening to our phone calls and this guy was already approached, bribed, and bought and sold when he came to our house I think it was in around February of 2000 though I could be off on the dates.
He basically tampered with ur drives, some of which were probably switched altogether.  I made the mistake of giving him access to call our computers.  We had one or two desk tops and a few laptops.  He thus had all the codes and access information and them we were from that point on unable to stop them from networking in and swiping songs.  I was typing around thrity songs onto a laptop one time in the kitchen when suddenly they all disappeared off the memory.  Well they would then know if we made any copies by scanning printing or making discs or CDs.  Thus they knew what we had with regards to songs and everything they needed to do to steal any evidence we had.

Any songs we had that we might have had a copy they would thus know about and not let their singers do until they were sure we had nothing on them.  This piece of garbage who purports to be a forensic crime fighter actually did all he could to continure robbing us.  He even got flustered one day and blurted out, "what's my own ITP address doing on your computer".  Later we also found out his latino wife was some sort of a musician and singer.  For people who have not been through this kind of thing it feels like we were robbed, my wife was raped and our lives destroyed.  And this guy goes merrily on his way and gets lauded as some good guy crime fighter.  I wonder how many others he robbed while playing the role of a forensic computer hack.

And just by coincidence I find this article that was published (no coincedence at all) shortly after we made contact with this alleged thief and total dirtball.  I see he appears to have retired in 2007.  I believe he made hundreds of thousands for what he did to us:

Computer Forensics Teams Learn to Follow Digital Footprints
Published: March 9, 2000
JOHN LEESON smiles as he straightens out a paper clip and inserts it in the back of a portable Zip disk drive of a personal computer that he has put into standby mode. The disk, which contains an unknown password that allows access to the computer's hard drive, pops out and Dr. Leeson inserts another disk. When prompted by an on-screen message, he chooses ''remove protection'' and enters a new password that will give him access to valuable information on the hard drive that had previously been blocked.

That is just part of a bag of tricks -- some easily available on the Internet -- that Dr. Leeson uses to teach his class of police officers and lawyers ways to retrieve information from computers.

Dr. Leeson, 55, an associate professor at the School of Computer Science at the University of Central Florida in Orlando, is a teacher and practitioner of what is known as computer forensics. In addition to teaching, he also helps the campus police department and the local sheriff's office with computer-related investigations.

''John is one of a couple of pioneers in this area,'' said Mark Politt, unit chief of the computer forensics laboratory at the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Washington. ''The need for computer forensics is growing exponentially, and we need more people trained in the basic fundamentals.

''The use of computers both as tools and storage devices for crimes is growing. Investigators need to build up teams because things have become so complex, one person doesn't have all the knowledge.''

There is a great demand for more law enforcement investigators trained in digital crime-solving techniques, said Carrie Whitcomb, director of the National Center for Forensics at the University of Central Florida, and the university is developing a graduate certificate program. Dr. Leeson's course, which is offered in the summer, is part of the program.

Digital evidence can come from many sources in addition to PC's, Dr. Leeson said. Investigators can also find evidence in Palm devices, fax machines, cell phones and other equipment that keeps or produces data or a record of users' activities.

''How do you catch a criminal?'' Dr. Leeson said. ''You try to follow the digital trail, just like the gumshoe would follow the trail of evidence.''

In a criminal case, if a computer can be seized by law enforcement authorities, then time is on the side of the investigators as they peel off the necessary information: e-mail and Web site records and hard drive data. If a computer cannot be confiscated, tracking a suspect becomes more difficult.

''Digital is like footprints in the sand,'' Dr. Leeson said, ''and it will disappear rather quickly over time because information is being overwritten constantly. If you overwrite in the digital world, it is virtually impossible to recover it.''

Standard detective work may be all that is necessary to recover things like Web site passwords. ''People leave information lying around,'' Dr. Leeson said. Often, a sticky note with a password might be in an obvious place, like on the PC monitor or underneath the keyboard. Pictures of a pet, grandparents or a friend, if they can be identified, may all be clues to a password.

A typical investigation might involve tracing the electronic path of someone suspected of downloading child pornography. If certain images are hidden or encrypted, Dr. Leeson said, ''it adds another layer to the hunt.'' If a suspect has used a ''very good encryption program, it goes from difficult to virtually impossible to unscramble,'' he said.

One of the hypothetical cases he discusses with his students is that of someone who receives a pipe bomb in the mail. In this case, an estranged wife is suspected. After the authorities get a search warrant, the hard disk on her computer reveals that she has been surfing the Internet and visiting sites that explain how to make the kind of bomb used in the crime. That kind of evidence, though circumstantial, can help link a person to a crime.

There are other, tougher cases, Dr. Leeson said, particularly those involving hackers who have used others' computer systems to do their damage. In those cases, he said, the investigator has to backtrack to determine how the hacker got into other people's computers.

Often that entry is through the Internet. ''The World Wide Web was not designed with security in mind but was designed to share research,'' Dr. Leeson said.

But the Web also has features that can aid a forensic computer scientist. Once a user is online, search engines are logging ''the fact that you are there and where you are coming from, and those log records can be used to track their way back,'' Dr. Leeson said. Cookies, tiny data files automatically placed by some sites on a computer's hard drive with a unique tracking number, are another way that a user's Web surfing habits are tracked.

''It is possible to falsify your tracks, and that makes the job of finding you much more difficult,'' he said.

Dr. Leeson acknowledges that some of what he taught in his first introductory graduate course on computer forensics may be old hat when he teaches the popular class again this summer. For one thing, Windows 2000 may pose some new security issues, while new state laws may have been enacted that will have an impact on the course.

''Any crime that you can conceive of,'' Dr. Leeson said, ''a computer can be an instrument of that crime.''

Photo: John Leeson of the University of Central Florida in Orlando teaches lawyers and the police to be digital detectives. (Linda Blank for The New York Times)

A version of this biography appeared in print on March 9, 2000, on page G8 of the New York edition.
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3696  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / correction on: December 19, 2009, 11:06:34 AM
"And what is worse it is not even for Americans"

I meant to say it is not even *only* for Americans.  Plenty of Americans certainly have their hands outstrected.

The *roles of people on the doles* is expanding exponentially thanks to the ONE and his merry widely spending clowns in the Congress and Senate. 

Cicero's words, as posted by Crafty circa 50 BC certainly ring true today here in the US.  Rome last over another 400 years.   But will we?

I don't know.  Trememdous damage has been done by the liberals.  It may not be too late.  Our multiple enemies overseas are laughing their brains out at what fools we are.
3697  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: December 19, 2009, 10:04:56 AM
It was inevitable with 60 crats.  My Federal tax dollars are going to fund medicaid programs in states like Louisianna, Nebraska and who knows where else.

Why try to pay one's own bills or be a success when it is easier just to get on line and have others pay for all your bills, health care, employment, retirement, diasabilities, food stamps and eveything else?

And what is worse it is not even for Americans.  It is for illegals and for all those who were born here from illegals.  This has to be at least 20 if not more like 30 million people.
I have pts who cannot speak one word of English who could not have been in the US for even a few years and they walk into my office with Medicare cards.  Why?  Because there must be some loop hole that extends to them from their relatives who are citizens.

And we wonder why we are going broke?  It ain't the bankers you Democrat f**ks!

***Sen. Ben Nelson to announce support for health-care bill

By Shailagh Murray and Lori Montgomery
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, December 19, 2009; 10:55 AM

Sen. Ben Nelson (Neb.), the final Democratic holdout on health care, announced to his caucus Saturday morning that he would support the Senate reform bill, clearing the way for final passage by Christmas.

"We're there," said Sen. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), as he headed into a special meeting to outline the deal.

Democratic leaders spent days trying to hammer out a deal with Nelson, and worked late Friday night with him on abortion coverage language that had proved the major stumbling block. Nelson also secured other favors for his home state.

Under the new abortion provisions, states can opt out of allowing plans to cover abortion in insurance exchanges the bill would set up to serve individuals who don't have employer coverage. Plus, enrollees in plans that do cover abortion procedures would pay for the coverage with separate checks - one for abortion, one for rest of health-care services.

Nelson secured full federal funding for his state to expand Medicaid coverage to all individuals below 133 percent of the federal poverty level. Other states must pay a small portion of the additional cost. He won concessions for qualifying nonprofit insurers and for Medigap providers from a new insurance tax. He also was able to roll back cuts to health savings accounts.

"I know this is hard for some of my colleagues to accept and I appreciate their right to disagree," Nelson told reporters at the Capitol, of the many changes made at his behest. "But I would not have voted for this bill without these provisions."

With Nelson on board, Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid unveiled the final version of a sweeping overhaul of the nation's health insurance system that would expand coverage to an additional 31 million Americans, coming closer to attaining the Democrats' long sought goal of universal medical coverage.

The package closely tracks the $848 billion measure Reid (D-Nev.) drafted this month, before he entered into negotiations aimed at winning the 60 votes he needs to avert a GOP filibuster, aides said. Since then, Reid has made numerous concessions to moderate Democrats, scrapping an effort to create a government-run insurance plan and beefing up prohibitions on spending federal funds for abortion coverage, a change demanded by the final holdout, Sen. Ben Nelson of Nebraska.

Instead of a public option, the final product would allow private firms for the first time to offer national insurance policies to all Americans, outside the jurisdiction of state regulations. Those plans would be negotiated through the Office of Personnel Management, the same agency that handles health coverage for federal workers and members of Congress.

Starting immediately, insurers would be prohibited from denying children coverage for pre-existing conditions. A complete ban on the practice would take effect in 2014, when the legislation seeks to create a network of state-based insurance exchanges, or marketplaces, where people who lack access to affordable coverage through an insurer can purchase policies.

Insurers competing in the exchanges would be required to justify rate increases, and those who jacked up prices unduly could be barred from the exchange. Reid's package also would give patients the right to appeal to an independent board if an insurer denies a medical claim. And all insurance companies would be required to spend at least 80 cents of every dollary they collect in premiums on delivering care to their customers.

Every American would be required to obtain coverage under the proposal, and employers would be required to pay a fine if they failed to offer affordable coverage and their workers sought federal subsidies to purchase insurance in the exchanges. Reid's package would offer additional assistance to the smallest businesses, however, increasing tax credits to purchase coverage by $12 billion over previous versions.

The overall cost of the package was not immediately available, but aides said it would be more than covered by cutting future Medicare spending and raising taxes in the health sector, including a 40 percent excise on the most expensive insurance policies. The package would reduce budget deficits by $130 billion by 2019, aides said, and by as much as $650 billion in the decade thereafter.

Reid officially filed the package early Saturday with plans to hold a first critical vote after midnight Sunday. Barring unexpected delays, Democrats were still hoping to push the package to final passage by Christmas Eve.****

3698  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Krauthammer on: December 18, 2009, 11:34:54 AM
"The idea of essentially taxing hardworking citizens of the democracies to fill the treasuries of Third World kleptocracies"

Perhaps a new thread should be started on the "assualt on the working American taxpayer" or "the new slavery" wherein hardworking American taxpayers are now expected to pay for all those who claim hard times here in our own country and all around the world as well.   Whether or not a tea party could really gain momentum or should merge with Republican party I don't know.  It is not simply as Hannity says we need to go back to our roots.  Republicans are just as corrupt as the Dems.  Their earmarks, their pork, their lobby money.  IN any case,

****The new socialism

By Charles Krauthammer | In the 1970s and early '80s, having seized control of the U.N. apparatus (by power of numbers), Third World countries decided to cash in. OPEC was pulling off the greatest wealth transfer from rich to poor in history. Why not them? So in grand U.N. declarations and conferences, they began calling for a "New International Economic Order." The NIEO's essential demand was simple: to transfer fantastic chunks of wealth from the industrialized West to the Third World.

On what grounds? In the name of equality — wealth redistribution via global socialism — with a dose of post-colonial reparations thrown in.

The idea of essentially taxing hardworking citizens of the democracies to fill the treasuries of Third World kleptocracies went nowhere, thanks mainly to Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher (and the debt crisis of the early '80s). They put a stake through the enterprise.

But such dreams never die. The raid on the Western treasuries is on again, but today with a new rationale to fit current ideological fashion. With socialism dead, the gigantic heist is now proposed as a sacred service of the newest religion: environmentalism.

One of the major goals of the Copenhagen climate summit is another NIEO shakedown: the transfer of hundreds of billions from the industrial West to the Third World to save the planet by, for example, planting green industries in the tristes tropiques.

Politically it's an idea of genius, engaging at once every left-wing erogenous zone: rich man's guilt, post-colonial guilt, environmental guilt. But the idea of shaking down the industrial democracies in the name of the environment thrives not just in the refined internationalist precincts of Copenhagen. It thrives on the national scale, too.

On the day Copenhagen opened, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency claimed jurisdiction over the regulation of carbon emissions by declaring them an "endangerment" to human health.

Since we operate an overwhelmingly carbon-based economy, the EPA will be regulating practically everything. No institution that emits more than 250 tons of CO2 a year will fall outside EPA control. This means more than a million building complexes, hospitals, plants, schools, businesses and similar enterprises. (The EPA proposes regulating emissions only above 25,000 tons, but it has no such authority.) Not since the creation of the Internal Revenue Service has a federal agency been given more intrusive power over every aspect of economic life.

This naked assertion of vast executive power in the name of the environment is the perfect fulfillment of the prediction of Czech President (and economist) Vaclav Klaus that environmentalism is becoming the new socialism, i.e., the totemic ideal in the name of which government seizes the commanding heights of the economy and society.

Socialism having failed so spectacularly, the left was adrift until it struck upon a brilliant gambit: metamorphosis from red to green. The cultural elites went straight from the memorial service for socialism to the altar of the environment. The objective is the same: highly centralized power given to the best and the brightest, the new class of experts, managers and technocrats. This time, however, the alleged justification is not abolishing oppression and inequality but saving the planet.

Not everyone is pleased with the coming New Carbon-Free International Order. When the Obama administration signaled (in a gesture to Copenhagen) a U.S. commitment to major cuts in carbon emissions, Democratic Sen. Jim Webb wrote the president protesting that he lacks the authority to do so unilaterally. That requires congressional concurrence by legislation or treaty.

With the Senate blocking President Obama's cap-and-trade carbon legislation, the EPA coup d'etat served as the administration's loud response to Webb: The hell we can't. With this EPA "endangerment" finding, we can do as we wish with carbon. Either the Senate passes cap-and-trade, or the EPA will impose even more draconian measures: all cap, no trade.

Forget for a moment the economic effects of severe carbon chastity. There's the matter of constitutional decency. If you want to revolutionize society — as will drastic carbon regulation and taxation in an energy economy that is 85 percent carbon-based — you do it through Congress reflecting popular will. Not by administrative fiat of EPA bureaucrats.

Congress should not just resist this executive overreaching, but trump it: Amend clean-air laws and restore their original intent by excluding CO2 from EPA control and reserving that power for Congress and future legislation.

Do it now. Do it soon. Because Big Brother isn't lurking in CIA cloak. He's knocking on your door, smiling under an EPA cap.*****

3699  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: December 17, 2009, 07:44:44 PM
Noonan seems to be thinking the same as me about BO's apparent attempt at sounding more mainstream.
I suppose many voters could fall for it.  I don't know, but I hope not.

The political headline this week is that President Obama appears to be attempting to move toward the center, or what he believes is the center. We saw the big pivot in two major speeches, one on the economy and the other, in Oslo, on peace.

If it is real—if the pivot signals a true, partial or coming shift, if it is not limited to rhetorical flurries—it is welcome news in terms of public policy. It also tells us some things. It tells us White House internal polling is probably worse than the public polls telling us the president has been losing support among independents. It tells us the mounting criticism from Republicans, conservatives and others has had a real effect. It tells us White House officials have concluded they were out on a cliff. It tells us they are calculating that after a first year of governing from the left, and winning whatever they win on health care, they believe they can persuasively shift to the center, that it will work.

Which is the great political question: Will it work? With congressional elections a year away, will it help make Democrats safe and keep Congress?

The disadvantage of a pivot is that it will further agitate the president's base, which feels he's already been too moderate. (This actually carries some benefits: When the left rails at Mr. Obama, he looks more moderate.) The upside is clear. In a time of extended crisis, voters are inclined to reject the radical. And a shift will represent a challenge to the president's competitors. It is one thing to meet a president's policies with effective wholesale denunciations when they are wholesale liberal. It's harder when those policies are more of a mix; it's harder to rally and rouse, harder to make criticism stick. Bill Clinton knew this. Maybe the White House is learning it, and the same way he learned it: after a bruising.

The economic speech took place Tuesday at the Brookings Institute, the generally left-leaning think tank in Washington. The president put unusual emphasis on—and showed unusual sympathy for—Americans in business, specifically small businesses. "Over the past 15 years, small businesses have created roughly 65% of all new jobs in America," he said. "These are companies formed around kitchen tables in family meetings, formed when an entrepreneur takes a chance on a dream, formed when a worker decides it's time she became her own boss." This is how Republicans, moderates and centrists think, and talk.

The president claimed success in reducing taxes—"This fall, I signed into law more than $30 billion in tax cuts for struggling businesses"—and announced a new cut: "We're proposing a complete elimination of capital gains taxes on small business investment along with an extension of write-offs to encourage small businesses to expand in the coming year." He called it "worthwhile" to create a new "tax incentive to encourage small businesses to add and keep employees."

All this was striking, and seemed an implicit concession that tax levels affect economic activity. It was as if he were waving his arms and saying, "Hey taxpayer, I'm not your enemy!" The only reason a president would find it necessary to deliver such a message is if he just found out taxpayers do think he's the enemy. The emphasis on what it takes to start and build a business, seemed if nothing else, a bowing to reality. And if you're going to bow to something, it might as well be reality.

Thursday, at his Nobel laureate speech in Oslo, the president used an audience of European leftists to place himself smack-dab in the American center. He said, essentially: War is bad but sometimes justified, America is good, and I am an American. He spoke of Afghanistan as "a conflict that America did not seek; one in which we are joined by 43 other countries—including Norway—in an effort to defend ourselves and all nations from further attacks." Adroit, that "including Norway." He said he had "an acute sense of the cost of armed conflict" and suggested America's efforts in Afghanistan fit the criterion of the concept of a "just war." It continues to be of great value that a modern, left-leaning American president speaks in this way to the world. "The world" didn't seem to enjoy it, and burst into applause a resounding once.

He quoted Martin Luther King, when he received the Peace Prize: "Violence never brings permanent peace. It solves no social problem: It merely creates new and more complicated ones." But Mr. Obama added that "as a head of state sworn to protect and defend my nation," he could not be guided only by Dr. King's example. "I face the world as it is, and cannot stand idle in the face of threats to the American people." Evil exists: "A nonviolent movement could not have halted Hitler's armies. Negotiations cannot convince al Qaeda's leaders to lay down their arms."

He acknowledged Europe's "ambivalence" about military action, and "a reflexive suspicion of America, the world's sole military superpower." But the world should remember what America did during and after World War II. "It is hard to conceive of a cause more just than the defeat of the Third Reich and the Axis powers," he said—and he pointedly noted America's creation of the Marshall Plan and contribution to the United Nations, "a legacy for which my own country is rightfully proud. . . . Whatever mistakes we have made, the plain fact is this: The United States of America has helped underwrite global security for more than six decades with the blood of our citizens and the strength of our arms."

All of this, as William Safire used to say, was good stuff. There were wiggy moments—his references to John Paul II in Poland and Richard Nixon in China were historically unknowing to the point of being utterly inapt—but they did no particular harm.

There continues to be a particular challenge for the president, and it is an affection gap. It is not hard to respect this president, not hard to want to listen to his views and weigh his arguments. It is a challenge, however, to feel warmly toward him. This matters politically because Americans like to feel affection for their presidents, and are more likely to forgive them for policy differences when they do. There's the stony, cool temperament, and also something new. The White House lately seems very fancy. When you think of them now, it's all tuxedoes, gowns and Hollywood. There's a certain metallic glamour. But metal is cold.

White House image masters will think the answer is to show pictures of the president smiling at children and walking newly plowed fields. Actually this is part of the mystery of politics—what to do with the clay of your candidate, how to make your guy likable.

I remember when everyone was turning against Bill Clinton after the financial scandals and the smallness of his first term. I thought for a while that Bob Dole would beat him. What I didn't take into account was a small thing that wasn't small. When people slammed Clinton in interviews they were often smiling as they spoke. "The rogue." "Ol' Bubba." Those smiles said something. They liked him. When they like you they forgive you a lot. Mr. Obama needs to make them smile. He doesn't. He leaves them cool as he is.

Printed in The Wall Street Journal, page A19
Copyright 2009 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved
3700  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Governator on: December 16, 2009, 11:54:44 AM
I remember an old college friend telling me in the 70's that Schwartenegger was his idol.  There is no question he was/is a great self promoter and very smart.  He was a great bodybuilder.  He did whatever it took.  He swindled Lou F. and obviously took steroids like the rest of them.  But he also worked hard and built the best body of his day.

He started in laughable movies and overcame that accent to become the biggest Movie draw of his day for a time.  That is remarkable when one thinks that he is not a very good actor.  He did it almost by sheer charisma.  I remember I used to look forward to him a guest on the "tonight " show.  I would wait till the end of the show when Johnny would have him come out and look forward to hearing him talk.  I was never a body builder but I like working out with weights so I had an interest.

I remember how he single handedly took the activity of body building from a looked down upon side show and made it more mainstream and appealable and accepted as  "sport."  Joe Weider could never do that.

Even Johnny Carson told him once on one of his many visits "you are very smart".
This after an idiotic Susan Pleshette questioned the Arnold, "can you tell me any exercises I can do while I am driving".
To which Arnold replied, "why do you want to exerciing while you are driving. When you are driving you should be concentrating on driving" to a laughing and nodding crowd and Johnny C.

I remember another person I met in the 80's who was trying to hit it big in show business tell me that Arnold's reputation in Hollywood was having been one of being considered the greatest self promoter anyone had ever seen.  That's saying a ton when one thinks of the BS artists, cons, and self marketeers in that town.

In my mind there is no question his gigantic narcissm coupled with a sharp, witty, and incredibly focused mind, workaholism, and iron will is together  a genius that got him to where he is.

That all said I don't know what to make of him now.  He looks like a failed governor in a liberal state full of Democrats on the dole, and who is desparately trying to stay relevant.

He states he is for the people and wants to do what is right but he has become increasingly more populist, and falling into the liberal line.  His latest push into the typical climatology-Hollywood-mantra looks phoney and cheap to me.

Perhaps it is the Kennedy influence on him.  I don't know.

I only know I just don't find him likable anymore.

Any thoughts from those in Kollyphornia?
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