Friday, December 19, 2008

Sarah Palin Will Not Accept Raise

Well, as I wrote earlier about the failure of the do-nothing Congress to curb spending, including their own pay raises for their most excellent work (sarcasm...), Governor Sarah Palin will not accept her pay raise.

She is a real person who understands these times are real bad. She was vilified on the campaign trail because of that. People who put her down continually for her lack of experience are now ready to embrace Caroline Kennedy for Senate in NY, despite nothing in Ms. Kennedy's background except being the daughter of a President and niece of a raging alcoholic Senator.

Good for Sarah...

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin would not accept a pay raise recommended by a state compensation commission, according to a spokesman.
The State Officers Compensation Commission, appointed by the former GOP vice-presidential candidate, recommended boosting the governor's pay from $125,000 to $150,000. It also suggested raises for the lieutenant governor, department heads and legislators.

If the commission follows through with the pay raise, Palin will not accept the money, spokesman Bill McAllister said. "Her view is, it's just not appropriate to accept a pay raise in the middle of the term," McAllister said.

The Failure of Congress... The Voted Themselves a Pay Raise!

As the US Congress muddles themselves with inefficiency and single-digit approval ratings, what do they do? They voted themselves a pay raise! Way to make yourselves look even more useless...

A crumbling economy, more than 2 million constituents who have lost their jobs this year, and congressional demands of CEOs to work for free did not convince lawmakers to freeze their own pay. Instead, they will get a $4,700 pay increase, amounting to an additional $2.5 million that taxpayers will spend on congressional salaries, and watchdog groups are not happy about it.

Nothing should surprise us anymore but this is a bit excessive. At the same time when they are throwing our money out the window to bail out private corporations, they also want to make sure their own coffers are taken care of.


BREAKING: Bailout Maina Continues...

Via the Wall Street Journal...

The White House on Friday unveiled a $17.4 billion rescue package for the
troubled Detroit auto makers that avoids bankruptcy. "Allowing the auto
companies to collapse is not a responsible course of action," President George
W. Bush said.

Speaking from the White House, he said that a bankruptcy was unlikely to work for the auto industry at this time and would deal "an unacceptably painful blow to hard-working Americans" across the economy.

The deal would extend $13.4 billion in loans to General Motors Corp. and Chrysler LLC in December and January, with another $4 billion likely available in February. The deal is contingent on the companies' showing that they are financially viable by March.

My analysis... The autos will not be financially viable by March. They will come crawling to Chairman Obama for more money. Obama is beholden to the UAW and Unions in general and will give them more money...

Just keep printing that money... Then watch the value of the dollar fall flatter than a pancake...

Caught in a Lie?

Well, well, well... It sure seems like perhaps The Anointed One did not necessarily escape the corruption of Illinois...

It seems that The One's Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, had numerous discussions with Gov. Rod Blagojevich...

From today's Chicago Sun-Times...

President-elect Barack Obama's incoming chief of staff Rahm Emanuel had a deeper involvement in pressing for a U.S. Senate seat appointment than previously reported, the Sun-Times has learned. Emanuel had direct discussions about the seat with Gov. Blagojevich, who is is accused of trying to auction it to the highest bidder.

Emanuel talked with the governor in the days following the Nov. 4 election and pressed early on for the appointment of Valerie Jarrett to the post, sources with knowledge of the conversations told the Sun-Times. There was no indication from sources that Emanuel brokered a deal, however.

A source with the Obama camp strongly denied Emanuel spoke with the governor
directly about the seat, saying Emanuel only spoke with Blagojevich once recently to say he was taking the chief of staff post.

Someone is lying... Color me surprised it might be Obama's camp...

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Michael J. Totten: On the Hunt in Baghdad

Michael J. Totten is a citizen journalist and blogger who has been chronicling the events on the ground in Iraq. With our troops. Not sitting cozy in Baghdad's hotels.

This new dispatch from him is very real and quite gripping. It evokes a place that is filed with uncertainty and danger. It also shows that we are winning the war in Iraq, contrary to what the mainstream media would portray.

Michael J. Totten: On The Hunt in Baghdad

BREAKING NEWS: MTA Approves Doomsday Budget

This plays nicely into the story below. The MTA is poorly run, the system is poorly maintained. Employees are wasteful and take no pride in their work.

NEW YORK (AP) -- The board of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority has passed a 2009 budget that ultimately would raise subway and bus fares in New York while cutting service.

The agency says it needs to raise fare and toll revenues by 23 percent in order to plug a budget gap worsened by the global financial crisis. Board members say they still hope for a bailout from Albany or Washington that might allow them to avoid the
increases. Details of the hikes and cuts won't be finalized until early next year. Under the worst-case scenario, a single bus or subway ride could rise to $2.50, and a monthly pass could cost around $100. Service cuts would include the elimination of bus and subway lines in areas where there is either low ridership or a duplication of services.

Taxation Up The A**

It's getting harder and harder to live in New York State... The level of taxation here is tremendous. The burden is placed on all of us. That, in addition to the higher prices overall, higher rents, and huge cost of living, this place is certainly not a place to consider long-term.

That said, Gov. David Patterson discussed his plans for the budget for FY 2010. Included in his proposals are CUTS (that's a good thing...) in hospital and school subsidies and the elimination of more than $1 billion in aid that City Hall hoped would help it weather the worst economic downturn in at least a generation. However, spending would still increase by 1% overall.

Here is the list of taxes...
* An "iTunes tax" of 4 percent on videos, music or pictures downloaded from the Internet.

* A 4 percent tax on taxi, limo and bus rides. That means a $10 cab ride would cost 40 cents more.

* A 4 percent entertainment tax on tickets to movies, concerts and sporting events. That would add nearly 50 cents to a $12 movie ticket or $1.80 to the cheapest $44.50 seat at a Knicks game.
* The tax on beer increases 24 cents per gallon, or more than double the current rate, which means about 30 cents a case.

* An 18 percent tax on nondiet soft drinks, which aims to reduce child obesity. A $1.50 can of Pepsi would then cost at least 25 cents more.

* A 4 percent tax on cable TV and satellite services, raising a $100 bill by $4.

* Hiking the cost of "personal" services - including haircuts, manicures, pedicures, massages and gym memberships - by 4 percent.

* A 4 percent sales tax on clothing and shoes under $500, except for two weeks out of the year.

* Elimination of the law that caps the state sales tax on gasoline at 8 cents per gallon.

* Boosting the average vehicle registration fee for drivers by $11, from $44 to $55. Fees for new or renewed licenses also would increase 25 percent, or increase from $50 to about $62 to renew a license over eight years.

In addition, all drivers would have to get new, "reflectorized" license plates at a fee of $25 each.

The plan also calls for the state to allow wine to be sold in grocery stores.

It would introduce video slot machines at Belmont Park.

New York could also join other states in their lottery games.

INSANITY... I'm sure the final budget will NOT include many of these but it's the ultimate in Nanny-Stateism... There is less and less of a reason to live here..

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Plot Thickens...

Check out this interesting piece from The Wall Street Journal...

Conventional wisdom holds that U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald ordered the FBI to arrest Rod Blagojevich before sunrise Tuesday in order to stop a crime from being committed. That would have been the sale of the Senate seat vacated by President-elect Barack Obama.

But the opposite is true: Members of Fitzgerald’s team are livid the scheme didn’t advance, at least for a little longer, according to some people close to Fitzgerald’s office. Why? Because had the plot unfolded, they might have had an opportunity most feds can only dream of: A chance to catch the sale of a Senate seat on tape, including the sellers and the buyers.

The precise timing of Tuesday’s dramatic, pre-dawn arrest was not dictated by Fitzgerald, nor was it dictated by the pace of Blagojevich’s alleged “crime spree.” It was dictated by the Chicago Tribune, according to people close to the investigation and a careful reading of the FBI’s affidavit in the case.

At Fitzgerald’s request, the paper had been holding back a story since October detailing how a confidante of Blagojevich was cooperating with his office.

Gerould Kern, the Tribune’s editor, said in a statement last week that these requests are granted in what he called isolated instances. “In each case, we strive to make the right decision as reporters and as citizens,” he said.

But editors decided to publish the story on Friday, Dec. 5, ending the Tribune’s own cooperation deal with the prosecutor.

Wow. So the Chicago Tribune had enough and decided that it was time to go public with this bombshell... The questions becomes, were they blowing the lid on the Federal wiretap to protect a very big fish? Someone much, much bigger and more powerful than little ol' Gov. Blago?

Stay tuned...

The Church Of Global Warming is in Session...

The Associated Press published a story yesterday from Seth Borenstein that shows why the cult of Global Warming is very dangerous. Mr. Borenstein writes the following:

WASHINGTON – When Bill Clinton took office in 1993, global warming was a slow-moving environmental problem that was easy to ignore. Now it is a ticking time bomb that President-elect Barack Obama can't avoid.

Since Clinton's inauguration, summer Arctic sea ice has lost the equivalent of Alaska, California and Texas. The 10 hottest years on record have occurred since Clinton's second inauguration. Global warming is accelerating. Time is close to running out, and Obama knows it.

Talk about hyperbole. Now, while summer Arctic sea ice may have lost that equivalent, the Antarctic ice shelf is actually growing at a rate not seen in decades. And then, there is this parting shot at the end of the story:

Mother Nature, of course, is oblivious to the federal government's machinations. Ironically, 2008 is on pace to be a slightly cooler year in a steadily rising temperature trend line. Experts say it's thanks to a La Nina weather variation. While skeptics are already using it as evidence of some kind of cooling trend, it actually illustrates how fast the world is warming.

OK, so the fact that this year will be cooler than last, is 'PROOF' of how fast the World is warming? Of course, the author gives no facts to backup this irrefutable proof. I've email Mr. Borenstein and hope that he will respond, as I remain very curious how this is proof.

All the while, stricter environmental regulations under the guise of slowing 'Global Warming' will push us further off the economic cliff and really hurt American business.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Preisdent Bush's Last Trip to Iraq and Afghanistan

So, President Bush made what will likely be his final visit to Iraq and Afghanistan as Commander-in-Chief. Of course, the big news is not that he actually made another visit to these countries (which takes some guts, Mr. Obama) but what happened during his media session in Baghdad with Iraq PM Maliki...

Zaidi jumped up as Bush was holding a press conference with Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki on Sunday, shouted "It is the farewell kiss, you dog" and threw two shoes at the US leader. The shoes missed after Bush ducked and Zaidi was immediately wrestled to the ground by security guards and frogmarched from the room. It is not known where Zaidi is currently being held.
So, this clown hurls his shoes at the President, who ducks them with great dexterity. I hope this idiot realizes if he did this to Saddam, he and his family would have ended up hung and quartered.

My question is what happened to the Secret Service? They certainly did not leap right in to protect the President. Isn't that their job? Mr. Obama, best of luck to you...