Wednesday, February 25, 2009

And Now for Universal Healthcare

Today, Obama announced that he's going to set aside $634 billion for Universal Health Care (while acknowledging that it will cost over a Trillion in real costs).

How will they raise the money?

1. Cost cutting in Medicare/Medicaid (which saves $175 Billion) by cutting reimbursements to insurers (who then pass this on to physicians) This is what will lead to rationing of health care.

2. Limiting tax deductions on couples making over $250,000

There we are again! So not only will they lower the top tax bracket income level and hike the top bracket marginal tax rate- they'll eliminate even more deductions to punish the top taxpayers. Gee, we don't even qualify for most deductions-- so what does this mean? The mortgage interest deduction? THAT will help the housing market. (But liberals want us all to live in 1,500 square foot houses anyways- so that's just another means to their end-game).

Wait a second- I thought that taxing "the rich" was going to pay for everything else Obama outlined last night? The free womb to the tomb education plan and the alternative energy plan and the subsidized auto loans. Now it will pay the bulk of the cost of Universal Healthcare? Do the math- they're lying!

They also want to save money by reimbursing based on "better patient care"-- the government will determine what that is...

Here's how it will go down folks--less people will go into sub speciality medicine (generalists make under $250,000)- because they won't make the money that rewards the work that's been put in (not to mention the risk of constant threats of lawsuits which costs $50,000+ year in individual malpractice insurance)- so then the government will start paying for Medical School to help people to go into medicine because there will be a shortage. You'll get the people who figure "I'll go to Med School if it's free!" instead of the best physicians. They'll make less money, which means they won't be willing to work as long and as hard. The few good doctors that remain will work for private hospitals where only "the rich" can afford care. (Just like "the rich" send their kids to private school). That- my friends- is socialized medicine. A two-tier system coming your way.

So you tax the doctors more to pay them less- that makes perfect sense- if you're a Democrat.

Leftie, Leftie, Lefite, Socialists

Joe Fool

I heard about this Joe Biden appearance on "The Early Show" on Rush today- Now watch this: (the specific part I'm talking about is at 2 minutes 30 seconds in)

A business owner- who's just layed off some of her workers- asks about specifics in the
Pork-u-lus package regarding help for small business.

He asks her to call his office and he talks about building a bridge across a creek to get to her business....

Now you tell me: who is more intelligent, Joe Biden or Sarah Palin? This idiot is in charge of ensuring the money is spent wisely? Help!!!

Report Back from the MN DFL "Misery Tour"

Reader Jim made it to Bloomington City Hall last night for the DFL "Misery Tour"-- (their touring 24 cities in the state to hear feedback on the Governor's budget- which cuts spending to balance the budget- instead of raising taxes).

Here's his report:

On another note, you're probably better off for not going for a ride on the DFL's magical misery tour. You probably would have been depressed by the three hour parade of "don't cut my handout" whiners. I must say, the conservatives put up a good showing, but there were plenty of sobbing (not literally, at least) liberals trotted out, and one I swear was a full-blooded communist.

It went 7-9pm, and was maybe 2:1 in favor of liberal whiners, then there was a break, most of the elected officials (out-state especially) and audience left, and it resumed at 9:10. It went from maybe 300+ people to about 50. From then until around 10:25pm it was maybe 1:1 conservative:liberal.

Clapping was forbidden, but a few eloquent (or elegant... har har) conservative speakers got claps and cheers anyway. This behavior, of course, was scolded by the chair lady, Ann Lenczewski (DFL). When a mentally retarded person said some stuff about wanting to keep his government handouts, he also got some claps, but Ann didn't object then. Overall, she was fair and wasn't a jerk about time limits. She let people talk long within reason and didn't selectively interrupt or anything. She just scolded us for 30 seconds each time we clapped for about three seconds when someone said something about taxpayers having to pay for all the whiners. Who's the one wasting time?

I did feel a lot of it was scripted. You hear the same lines sometimes. "Please consider increasing revenue" says the guy in the wheelchair. Really, you thought of a clever way to avoid saying "increase taxes on someone else to pay for my goodies" by yourself? And three or four other people also just happened to have that exact "strongly imply but avoid saying increase taxes" phrase... hmm.

A funny part was when Ann was talking about a buzzing speaker or echo or something and said, "we're getting a lot of noise from the left." Ha! You know it. A whining sound, maybe.

Readers- if you have any chance to make it to any of these dates/places near you- Here are two metro locations that are still on the calendar for this week.

Burnsville Wednesday, February 25th - 7:30 p.m.Fairview Ridges Hospital, 201 E Nicollet Blvd

Plymouth Thursday, February 26th - 7:00 p.m.Plymouth City Hall, 3400 Plymouth Blvd

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Obama Congress Address Live Blog Final

And here's what's in it for us- no surprise here. Here's how he'll help pay for all of the free education and health care promises.

"If your family earns less than $250,000- you will not see your taxes increase one single dime".

Todd and I are "the rich"- we're the 2%- we just got here-too bad for us! (P.S. the current top bracket is at about $308,000 today with a 35% rate which took years to get to under the Bush tax cut so I'll assume he's lowering it to $250,000 to capture more people with the rate hiked back up to 39.6%-- perhaps more- why not? My bet is on 42%...There's not enough people who make that much money to do anything about it).

The Bush tax cut- cut taxes for everybody- why not roll back the whole thing if it was such a terrible idea?

Class warfare- 20 years of hard work- for this. So all the talk about "sacrifice"-- but it's only sacrifice for 2% of income earners in the country. (And our military who sacrifices everyday- but our money ain't going their way).

This is what our founders wanted, this is what they fought for- redistribution of wealth.

My father-in-law- also a physician- said he's going part-time as soon as the tax cuts will a lot of other people I bet. I'm not going back to work anytime soon- why on earth would I? People will not work to give 50% of their money (that's your federal, state and local tax liability if you're at the top) to the government so that they can give it to other people.

And by the way- he's lying. Taxes WILL go up for those under $250,000- they'll HAVE TO with this level of spending. Maybe not in the next few years, but they will go up. You can't spend like a drunken sailor and not require some significant increase in revenue. 2% of the population isn't going to cut it.

There's a line in the sand for Republicans- it's time to fight. He wants to fundamentally change our country to a Socialist nation- it's completely clear now. Start calling him a Socialist and make him defend himself against that charge. After pork-u-lus, after that speech, he can't.

I'm done here- this is just too depressing.

Obama Congress Address Live Blog Part 3

He's talking more about picking the winners in the losers-

He's going to help some families who have "saved for a house", some families so "they can buy that new car"--by taking money from other families who have also been saving for houses or who want to buy a new car.

Think of all the people out there just waiting to see what he's going to come out with "for them" before they make those decisions.

Pelosi now looks like he's going to cry.

Now he's referencing the GI Bill- WHAT NERVE!! He's going to cut our military budget by 10% and there wasn't ONE DIME for the Defense Dept in the Pork-u-lus bill.

Now he outlines the three critical components for our economic recovery: Energy, Healthcare and Education.

He talks about solar energy, wind, biofuels....He talks about the "ravages of climate change" and calls for more renewable energy in America. Not one mention of nuclear power, not one mention of drilling for our own resources- these are not on the agenda, we already knew that.

A "retooled and reimagined Auto industry"-- more big government telling companies what to do-- CAFE standards, high corporate taxes and Union benefits and salaries are what's driving American auto companies out of business....

Now healthcare- government enforced "efficiencies" (because government is so great at efficiency!)...he's bringing everyone together next week to start working on healthcare reform (Lord, help us). Which doctors? I'll be watching that one- it will be the liberal American Medical Association-- just watch..

Lastly, education. Womb to the tomb promises- Obama promises "from the day they are born" they will have access to education. FREE DAYCARE FOR ALL! So a 6-week-old baby will soon be going to "school"! He wants to "expand our committment to charter schools" (What was I just saying about those- private school for people who don't want to pay for it). So everybody will have a choice- as long as the choice is to keep your kids in government-run schools. We're in trouble.

He's promises the most college graduates in the world- yeah, keep 'em in college- cuz they won't have a job when they get out.

We are Sweden.

Obama Congress Address Live Blog Part 2

He is truly "the messiah"--

He's set up how bad everything has been for decades- decades- but now he's here and he's going to save us!

"Not because I believe in bigger government, I don't" HA!

He's talking really quickly.

Look at Pelosi and Biden- they are so giddy!

"Because of this plan, there are now teachers who have kept their jobs"

"There are 57 police officers in Minneapolis, MN tonight- because of this plan"....

You mean because liberal failure Mayor of Mpls R.T. Ryback- who is running the city into the ground- threatened to fire police officers rather than cut back on the millions of dollars of wasteful spending in the City budget?

Why should the people of Alabama bail us out for our stupid Mayor??

"If we don't start re-lending in this economy, our economy will be choked off before it begins"...

We need LESS credit in this country..we need smaller student loans to drive down the unaffordable cost of higher education, we need less lending for bad mortgages to bring down over-inflated housing prices,

Wait, wait, did he just say we're going to start funding AUTO loans?

Again- Twilight Zone, I'm in the Twilight Zone.

The founding fathers set up our government to provide auto loans to people?

Obama Congress Address Live Blog...

I was supposed to go to the MN DFL "Misery Tour" tonight, but I wasn't feeling up to it. My in-laws are in town, my dad's having surgery at 7:30 tomorrow morning, and I'm beat...that's what the DFL counts on though. That a normal mom -who happens to be in the tax bracket they're targeting- will be too tired to show up to try to speak out against their foolish spending and tax hikes. They win. I'm defeated- for now.

So- here I am watching Obama- I don't think I can make it through this whole thing. I'll be channel flipping. I'm so tired of his mug on the TV every day- I can't take it any more. (Again a Dem strategy, they're beating us down).

Obama's now 8+ minutes late- for LIVE TV.

What an ass.

I Need A Drink

I can't stop thinking about the "Fiscal Responsibility Summitt"..did you hear that they had "breakout sessions" with everyone reporting back to the main room to tell the President of their progress? It's like the worst of the worst sales conferences I used to have to suffer through.

Rush said today "Professor Obama was lecturing his class."

And tonight the Professor will lecture the rest of us.

Here come the tax hikes!

More from the State Dinner

Isn't MN Governor Tim Pawlenty's daughter Anna like 15 years old? This is NOT an appropriate dress for her age. Who bought that?

Monday, February 23, 2009

More Fashion Talk

More good times for the Prez-- jamming to "Boogie Wonderland" with Earth, Wind and Fire live at the White House, Obama hosted his first state dinner last night.

I like Michelle's dress and hair. But those necklaces???

Repeat after me, Michelle:

Less is more. Less is more. Less is more.

This is a funny video- check out LA Gov Bobby Jindahl's wife and PA Gov Ed Rendell's wife in the same dress. Rendell's wife is WAY too old for that number. Arms dear, your arms.

The Twilight Zone

It hit me, it just hit me that this man is our President:

It's taken almost 4 months since the election- I know. But tonight it has finally sunk in and I feel like I'm in the Twilight Zone.

Do you know what did it? Watching the news tonight and seeing Obama in a weird room with a bunch of Senators and Representatives answering questions in front of the cameras. What was that? Where was that? Have we ever had a President do that? Should a President do that? It was called a "Fiscal Responsibility Summit" What's that? They just did a pulse check and threw it together? I'm so confused.

Boy- it instills a lot of confidence joking around about helicopters and Congressman not liking him- when the Dow dropped to a 12-year-low today.

Is this England? Do we have a Parliament? Since when do Presidents do this- answer to the Congress in this type of setting? I'm not that old, but I'm not that young either- somebody help me out here.

So- here's how it's going to go down in this Administration:

1. Propose bad legislation (on camera)

2. Go to Townhall meetings (with cameras) with crazy worshippers

3. Get bad legislation passed

4. Immediately have cameras at some sort of "summit" that negates the bad legislation you just passed and

5. Answer questions from Republicans (in front of the cameras) about the legislation that you wouldn't let them have any input on so that

1. the public can see how cool and funny you are and

2. you can pretend you have a bipartisan bone in your body

It reminds me of what Warren Beatty said to Madonna in that bad 1990 reality movie "She doesn't want to live off-camera". Yeah- that's Barack and he's our President. Got it.

We're in serious times folks- serious times. The Republicans should not have shown up to this "summit"- the leadership should have said "If you want to meet with us- we'll meet with you in private to discuss what went down and what could be done differently next time, we're not going to this media show under the banner of 'fiscal responsibility' after the bill you just passed".

Am I right or am I right?


I caught just the end of the Oscar's last night- who cares, right? I haven't seen one of the nominated movies this year-- except for WALL-E which I've seen 15 times...

Sean Penn just couldn't keep his mouth shut, he's so happy we now have an "elegant" President. What a moron.

Reese Witherspoon's dress last night was unflattering and awful....

It reminded me of this one...

Friday, February 20, 2009

Tough Talking Barry

Look for my new friend- the Obama action figure- on my blog soon. He's very busy around my house on new adventures...

Obama was talking-tough today to a group of Mayor's at the White House:

"If a federal agency proposes a project that will waste that money, I will not hesitate to call them out on it, and put a stop to it," he said. "I want everyone here to be on notice that if a local government does the same, I will call them out on it, and use the full power of my office and our administration to stop it."

....The president said there will be a White House team assigned to track how the money is spent. A detailed report by his budget director laid out specific guidelines the states and cities must adopt for reporting their activities using the money.

Is this the same team who vetted his Cabinet picks? What are the guidelines? You could argue anything "creates jobs".

What a joke- what a complete joke. Obama is going to keep track of local government spending- are you kidding me?? Yeah- the City of Waseca mispent money that came down via the Pork-u-lus bill and he's going to call the Mayor: "Mayor, I see that you mispent that money"-- He's going to sick Holder on them...

What is he talking about? Only the big cities- right? Good luck trying to tell Mayors what to do. Once you throw money at people, it's done. You have no control over how they spend it.

The article linked above quotes America's favorite Mayor- Nagin of New Orleans.

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin said he is optimistic that his Republican governor, Bobby Jindal, will not block his city's access to the money. Jindal has been tapped to give the Republican response to Obama's speech to Congress next Tuesday.

"Most of the money is going through the states. The governor of the state of Louisiana is a Republican," Nagin said. "He has a certain vernacular and a certain way he needs to talk right now. But I don't think it's going to impede us. I told the governor personally: any dollars he does not want, we will take them gladly."

Oh, I'm sure you will Ray! The fools down there mispent federal money for decades-- money that should have been spent re-working levies- but NOW they're going to magically be responsible with our tax dollars. Right.

"It took two and a half years before any money really hit the city of New Orleans after Katrina," Nagin said. "And I made the point that if this stimulus money travels on the same track, then there will be lots of unspent dollars at the end of this initiative. And they assured us that they're going to push the money as quickly as they can through the states, and some of it directly to the cities."

Gee- some of it will get pushed through directly to cities- more vote buying in Dem strongholds.

And here's "dumber" in conclusion:

Vice President Biden warned the mayors of political consequences if the money is not spent quickly and wisely.

"President Obama has been insistent during his campaign and from the time we won on accountability and transparency," he said. "All of you know, if we don't meet that minimum threshold, the likelihood of the public trusting us to do this kind of thing is going to evaporate very rapidly."

Transparency- like the kind that was offered when the 1,000+ page "stimulus" bill was available for 12 hours to the American people before a vote was taken?

This tough-talking, talking-down, dog-and-pony-show nonsense makes me sick.

Chicago Tea Party

Reader Jake wanted me to post this video of CNBC's Rick Santelli talking on the floor of the Chicago stock exchange- watched it yesterday- if you missed it- you must watch-It's awesome!!

My prediction: Dow will be down to 6,000 this year

I'm sure there will be some sort of tax protest organized in Minnesota- and I'll be there!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Ask a Stupid Question.....

Nightline did a story last night on Mariposa, AZ- an area heavily hit by foreclosures. They showed some nice, 4-year-old 4-bedroom houses originally selling for $250,000 that were now available for $95,000. Time to look for homes in AZ I'd say....

A struggling homeowner was interviewed and says (paraphrasing) "I'm a single mom, what am I supposed to do? Pack up my things and move to an apartment?".

YES- YES- That's exactly what you're supposed to do. Home ownership isn't a right- it's a privilege.

I'm trying to take some comfort knowing that Obama's plan won't work and this article from The Economist explains why.

Diary of a Mad White Woman

Obama's Attorney General , Eric Holder, is continuing the Administration's national lecture on race and apparently we are- and always have been- "a nation of cowards".

I'd like to point readers to this website I found- "Black Voices"- I was researching opinions on Obama and found it the other day. I thought I'd hold onto it until the next time somebody in Obama's administration brought up race....low and behold one day later....

Read some of the disgusting comments about new GOP Chair Michael Steele on the "Black Voices" blog:

He's called a token, a racist, a"niggrant" (multiple times), a mother-f---a, an "Uncle Tom House Negroe"...on and on....Republicans are called "Klansmen" and about a million other things. "Black Voices"...they don't sound too cowardly to me.

One rare comment on the site says this:

I am Black, female, and a Republican. I am an Army veteran my husband is a Navy veteran, and our son is a proud Marine. Why are folks like us called sell-outs and our beliefs denigrated because we don't march lock-step with Black Democrats? Instead of attacking Mr Steele,whom I respect, why not rejoice in the fact diversity among Blacks is another step towards abolishing racism. Lately the biggest racist group I have ever encountered has the same skin color as me and my family.

I've always been somebody who actually enjoys talking about taboo subjects, politics, religion and's made me somewhat of a social outcast (I can ruin a dinner party in about 10 minutes if somebody starts trying to debate me), but it's who I am.

Race (and I'll keep this post to African Americans) is a fascinating subject- but I have learned over the years that it's usually not worth the energy to discuss it because no amount of discussion is going to change the fact that somehow- because you're white- you are responsible for the oppression of blacks in this country.

I grew up in a town with about six black kids. Two were adopted by a white family and the others were in mixed race homes. I was good friends from the 3rd grade on with one of the black girls in Lakeville who lived down the street from me. I've always liked R&B and Jazz music and have an interest in black culture. By high school, my best friend (white) was exclusively dating black guys from the city. So- yes I'm from Lakeville, but I certainly had exposure to African Americans from a young age.

I remember sitting in the LHS library with an underclassman- who was black- and we got into a discussion on race. He had a Malcolm X hat on (all the rage in 1990) and I asked him what he knew about the man. He knew a lot and proceeded to tell me all about The Nation of Islam and the evils done by whites- but when I asked if he knew that Malcolm X had expressed remorse for some of the things he had done and that his all-encompassing view of whites as "devils" changed late in his life- he didn't believe me at all. I told him he needed to read more about the man.

As a liberal arts major at the U- we had to take several mandatory "cultural studies" classes-- it annoyed me because I wanted time to study more political science, European and American history- which we were barely exposed to in high school. (Interestingly enough Holder agrees with me that there shouldn't be separate classes for this!) I took an African-American studies class where the black TA's enjoyed berating their white students- even making one of them cry once. I got an A- my final paper was on the "institutionalized racism of the modern welfare state" (one of the rare instances I wrote from the conservative side and still got a good grade).

When I was running for Student Body President- I made visits to the Cultural Centers on campus- there were Centers for Native American, Hispanic (La Raza), Asian America, Gay/Bi/Transgender (yes that's a culture I guess) and African American-- they were all polite enough (although I knew they were never going to support me) except for the Africana Center- where not one student even looked up at me when I went in to speak-- they literally wouldn't make eye contact- this is the same cultural center that brought radical speakers to campus including Louis Farrakhan. I faced similiar treatment when I was part of a Star Tribune panel on race with black student leaders telling me what I thought- challenging my assertion that when I walked on campus at night that I was cautious around ANY man- no matter what color his skin was. No- I was inherently racist because I was white and they were positive that I was lying...So much for open discussion.

I lived in North Dakota right after college- where there was basically no black population and then moved to Atlanta- where I worked in an office that was probably 60% white 40% black. It was eye opening. I made friends with a few of my black co-workers- but for the most part- things were pretty separate and I learned that you had to be exceptionally nice to the predominantly black loan documentation department in order to get your docs processed. Many times they'd simply ignore the salesperson until they were good and ready to talk to you. There was definitely reverse racism down there and I have a dozen stories to demonstrate it... Go to the Neiman Marcus at Phipps Plaza and try to get help if there are black customers around- you will be snubbed because they know there is very wealthy black clientele that shop there. (I have no problem with this by the way- if I worked there I would have done the same thing).

Minnesotans are funny about the South- very much looking down their noses at it- but it was a great experience- I miss the awesome R&B radio stations, I miss great soul food, I miss the beautiful black women who could buy and sell you in their big Bentley's and Mercedes. It's a flashy town and the large African American population heavily influences the city.

Until you live in places where you are the minority in some settings, I don't think you really can say you understand race relations. Sitting around a coffee shop talking about it is very different from living it.

My last big race conversation happened when I had re-connected with my best friend from high school when I moved back to MN. By that time she was a single mom with a bi-racial daughter and was dating a new guy. Todd and I met them out for dinner. He was from Maryland and went to a top University. At the beginning of dinner I told him I'd always wanted to visit Maryland and that I heard the Eastern Shore was beautiful with lots of B&B's-- he shot me a dirty look and said "black folk don't go to no B&B's"-- I guess I was supposed to assume he was from the ghetto and I guess it was okay for somebody with a graduate degree to speak in ebonics when trying to put a white girl in her place. Maybe I should have said "Really, black people don't ever go to B&B's, that's really interesting, why not?" But I didn't take the bait and the conversation went down hill from there while he tried to educate me about race, the evil of George Bush and the War in Iraq....I didn't talk to my friend for over a year after that happened.

Mr. Holder says:

"I think if we're going to ever make progress, we have to have the guts. We have to have the determination to be honest with each other,"

In my experience, honesty gets you nowhere. Politeness gets you nowhere. When it comes to conversations about race it seems no matter what you say that whites are always going to be asked to apologize for something. (Never mind that most of my ancestors emigrated after slavery was abolished, never mind that the few who came here before lived in Minnesota and fought for the Union in the Civil War). In all of the instances I can think of regarding conversations on race- as soon as I stopped listening to the black person I was talking to and offered an opinion, I was shouted down. And unlike how I act with white liberals- I usually just stop arguing because no matter what you say you're going to be a "racist" by the end of the conversation and who wants to be called a racist?

Michelle Malkin states it better:

"Holder doesn't want an honest dialogue about race. In the Age of [President] Obama, 'talking enough with each other about race' means the rest of us shutting up while being subjected to lectures about our insensitivity and insufficient integration on the weekends,"

From the closing prayers on Inauguration day to the new Justice Department head telling us we're a "nation of cowards"- it's pretty clear to me that color of your skin is going to be front and center in this new administration.

Policy wise- Holder wants to "revitalize the Civil Rights Division" at the Justice Department. I mean- Barack Obama was just elected President- the man raised more money than any candidate in history by two-fold! Interesting choice of priorities at this time in history.

Unfortunately, the older I get the more aware of race I become. It seems strange to me that even with a black President, a black Attorney General, and a black head of the GOP-- we're asked to talk about race more- not less.

It seems we're never going to be color blind in this country and for that I am sorry.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Belated Valentine's Post

I caught Steve Harvey on The Today Show this morning- he gave an interview about his new book- "Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think About Love, Relationships, Intimacy, and Commitment" (It's #1 on the New York Times Bestseller list).

Many of the messages were similar to what my sister and I said in "The List: 7 Ways to Tell If He's Going to Marry you in 30 Days or Less"- although we never made the New York Times Bestseller list when it came out in 2006 (fame helps when you're selling books we discovered).

Anyway, it's a good message for young women out there. Men WILL let you know their intentions and if they don't- dump them. I have to disagree with Mr. Harvey that women should "not try to move the TV" in order to "act like a lady"-- I have helped Todd move a lot of furniture during our marriage! Our book's message? He'll love you exactly the way you are and you don't ever need to "act" like anything other than yourself. (And she'll love you the way you are too!)

Love is really not that complicated after all.

P.S. I received a beautiful bouquet of flowers this year- pink roses, white hydrangeas, and lillies ...but even better? Todd bought each of the girls one perfect rose in their favorite colors (Red for Jane and Pink for Kathleen) that's sweet.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Tax Hearings at the Capitol and at a Public Place Near You

I'm watching a SEIU (Service Employees International Union) testify to the State Health and Human Services Committee in St. Paul (where Chair Linda Berglin has run the welfare show for eons- but they just keep changing her Committee's name which gets her around the rules for Chair term limits). Berglin has been in St. Paul since before I was born- she started in 1972!!! Think about that....through folk-rock, disco, new wave, heavy metal, grunge, teen pop, and rap- this woman has been sitting at the state Capitol spending our money.

The SEIU representative (after outlining all of the terrible things that will happen in nursing homes if they don't get their pay raises- even saying that there will be more abuse cases) smugly states "we will be at your tax hearings all over the state"...

The DFL has organized "Tax Hearings" across the state over the next few weeks and there are highly coordinated efforts by the Unions and other "community" organizations to ensure that there will be lots of government employees and lots of welfare recipients there to tell their stories.

Concerned taxpayers should sign up to speak today.

This link shows all of the locations-- I think I'll head to the one in Bloomington where DFL Tax Chair Rep. Ann Lenczewski (DFL-40B), will be presiding...

Here's a good document put together by Minnesota Majority on state budget facts:

Now I'm still watching these public testimonies- one person after another saying how much they need welfare to survive, how their program can't survive without more money, on and on....One woman chokes up saying she "hates being on welfare", but her job in the public-sector as a Personal Care Assistant doesn't pay a decent wage. Perhaps time to go to the private sector? I've researched PCA's for my grandma- they ain't cheap.

One rep for a state program has spelled out monthly rent and food costs for a Ramsey Co. family of 3 - it's approximately $1,300-- and she is lamenting the fact that they're only receiving MFIP (MN Family Investment Program) grants of approximately $950 per month. They're making the case that people can't get jobs, therefore they should have all of their food and rent paid for.

$950 a month? That's a ton of money to receive free and clear...and they're complaining about it.

I know a woman that is a single mom with three kids receiving no child support from her ex-husband. She lives with another single mom to save on rent and works 40+ hours a week and she refuses to take any welfare- she's a Republican. Why should people like her subsidize these other families? Because she doesn't make the choice to live off of public assistance? How is this right?

I don't have an issue with helping people who are disabled and who can't work. I certainly think we need safety nets for people who are stricken with cancer- which devastates a family and many times prevents both the patient and the caretaker from working for a period of time. We need to help the poor elderly who can no longer work. But is it so unreasonable to believe that- if you're able-bodied- that you should only be able to live off the public dole for one year while you seek employment? And isn't $950 a month- $11,400 a year (free and clear) more than generous? How many taxpayers does it take to generate that $11,400? This is on top of many other programs (including unemployment) that are out there...

Perhaps we could come up with a compromise and say "yes, you can have this much money, but you need to pay it back"-- like a student loan. Obviously it's not enforceable, but wouldn't that be a good way to determine who wants a hand-up and who wants a hand-out?

Ah- the parade of whining will not stop. Liberals and their union cohorts continue to push for tax increases on already high taxes. They don't care that the economy's down, they need your money. It's discouraging because Republicans face such an uphill battle against these machines, but perhaps if we can get a few people at these hearings, we can get some sort of sane message across to St. Paul.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Here Come the Mortgages

I'm dying to see the Obama mortgage plan. According to Forbes magazine yesterday,

Reports suggest the plan will include a "means test" to determine if people can afford their homes, with qualifying homeowners receiving mortgage help.

Somewhere on the Sunday talk shows I heard that the government will help out people whose mortgages are more than 33% of their income.

Woah. So if a couple was making $100,000 a year, got themselves into a $250,000 home, one loses their job and now they're making $50,000 a year- their mortgage will be renegotiated to $150,000? This simply can't be right.

Many of us are sitting in homes who have dropped in value (we bought in 2004- the top of the market)- tough it out. Did somebody make me a promise that my house would continue to increase in value? No, but it's a long term investment. Will the government then ask to collect money when home values go back up in another decade? Will the people who got themselves in over their heads have a note to sign to re-pay the government the minute their income goes back up?

I wonder who the "chosen ones" will be with this plan.

This could ignite middle-class warfare like we've never seen.

How about this plan? Give people a tax credit equal to 10% of the appraised value on a home to buy it. And don't limit it to first-time homeowners. Ah, but that doesn't help the people at the bottom who don't pay income taxes? Too bad.

It would allow people- who have the ability- to buy up foreclosed properties which would help the market tremendously. It could also help out people looking to help their retired parents purchase their homes. It would do a lot- with no help from the government other than them giving you your money back. It would help the local governments get their property taxes back.

The Republicans should be in front of the people TODAY- I don't care if it's a "holiday"- talking about an alternative plan. Of course it would need to be accompanied by spending cuts- perhaps they could cut Frannie and Freddie and re-spell out their role in the current economic downturn? (who- by the way- are the ones who Obama will enlist to help with his plan).

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Haiku Winner! Limerick Contest!

As we go into Friday- I'm trying to prepare myself for the reality that this STUPID legislation is about the be passed by our STUPID liberal-led Congress. And now they're talking about more money to lower the monthly mortgages of some- the "chosen ones". Can you believe this? Can you believe it?

I'm gravely concerned about the direction we're about to turn--I heard the Beach Boys on the radio this morning- it was sunny and I was in a good mood driving the girls around- "Don't worry baby, everything will turn out allright." Easier said than done.

So to lighten the mood a bit, I kindly request more inspired poetry. This challenge is a bit more difficult....

Reader Jim's Pork-u-lus Haikus are brilliant! (I wish my IQ were up in his range) He is the winner of my first poetry contest.

This was my favorite:

No end to handouts
Yet still no utopia
So they will spend more

Very profound...there's a dread and stillness that envelops you when you read it....

He has his choice of the following for the prize:

1. Pork-u-lus Lunch on Me!
Gift Certificate for Baker's Ribs- their pulled pork sandwiches are great!


2. Obama Action Figure with Kung-Fu/I'm going to take all of your money grip

Now- read his limericks- read them and weep...

As we get ready for St. Paddy's Day can you come up with one of these bad boys? Mary- this is for you... can you top that last one?

To delay the financial sorrow,
They want to spend billions tomorrow.
They emphasize haste,while ignoring waste.
With no funds they print or they borrow.

Our finances suffer some slackage
With no way to offset this lackage
We cry for our mama
And look to Obama
To stimulate us with his package!

St. Paul Shenanigans

We watched "Almanac at the Capitol" last night- one of the top priorities in St. Paul? Medical Marijuana Use

DFL Leader Steve Murphy started crying at a press conference and used his father's death as a reason why we should legalize grass for those who are sick:

"gosh darn, you know when you talk about your own family you get a little teary eyed, so give me a second. But in those last few weeks, he would have given anything and us kids would have given anything to have the opportunity to play one more game of chess with us"

I wonder how well you can play chess when you're high? These are just the things that pop into my head.... what a ridiculous argument. We've all watched love ones suffer, it is unfortunately a truth in life that we'll all die. Thank God for modern medicine and pain management that is available, but to people really need to have 100 joints of mary jane in their house? (that's what the law change would mean) Republicans and Democrats both support this bill.

In other Capitol meetings this week:

A Catholic Priest and Lutheran Bishop joined forces to fight against any cuts to welfare in Minnesota....(hence why I stopped giving to Catholic Charities)

And in the path to clear "free health care for all" - the Commies were out in full force (Commie #1 John Marty is sponsoring the bill)

DFL Senator Linda Scheid- Brooklyn Center- Commerce Committee Chair asks Mike Burress of the Minnesota Underwriters Association:

"did you kind of imply that if you work really hard and earn more money, that you should have access to better health plan and therefore better health care?"

Mike Burress replied "As with cars and housing and everything else, absolutely"

The audiences moans and boos fill the halls of the committee room.... (watch the video!)

Burress holds his ground: "This is America, not a Socialist State, yet"

Amen brother.

The funny thing? This is EXACTLY what the Dems will deliver to the people of Minnesota- a two tier system where those who take services for free get one level of care and those who will pay for service will get another level...just like our public school system.

Don't Pick on the Poor Union! That's MEAN!

AFSCME (American Federation of State, County, Municipal Employees- aka Government Workers) Bullies GOP Aide into making an apology.

Read the story in USA Today here.

Poor little defenseless AFSCME (who is the largest single contributor to Democrats in the nation)... one little GOP aide sends one silly video to one reporter as a sarcastic way to respond to their ad attacking his boss, and they demand an apology because they're so sensitive. No- they want the publicity. They also want your money- no salary freezes, no layoffs and free health care from the taxpayers- and by the way we want unlimited unemployment and welfare in case we do lose our jobs- who cares if there's an economic downturn and that our money comes from all of you in the private sector? We work for the government- dammit- we're entitled!

Here's the video that the Aide sent (if you are offended by profane language, don't watch it-- if you're offended by profane language though, we probably aren't friends).

I think it's hilarious myself and I wouldn't have apologized, I would have said "get over it". Republicans better stop with the apologies and take the gloves off pretty soon- or there will be no private sector left.

Another Union story- I hired a remodeling company who used Union workers (I DIDN'T KNOW) to work on our basement. Every morning at about 10am- their on-site supervisor would sit in a lawn chair that he brought along with him and read the Star Tribune on his coffee break. Typically there weren't any other workers here working for him to supervise, it was just him. It was the most painfully slow and ridiculously expensive remodel I'll ever do.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Pork-u-lus Haiku Contest

I know I have some creative, smart readers out there--

I'm taking this idea from my sister's blog- a Pork-u-lus Haiku contest.

Here's Mary's

My Super Spender
Wants me to believe in him
But not on my terms

Here's mine;

Messiah praise thee
Unemployed worry not friend
Medicaid for you


Faster Than a Speeding Bullet

Even before I could get a post up on the critical changes to the U.S. Healthcare system that were snuck into the Pork-u-lus Bill- the Senate and House have reached a comprimise on a new bill that looks like it could be passed later this week.

The speed to spend (now a mere $800 Billion) of taxpayer money is indeed frightening- this is what happened this fall with the TARP legislation too. What on earth is the hurry?

I saw the author of this piece on Fox this morning- this is very scary for our country.

Ruin Your Health With the Obama Stimulus Plan: Betsy McCaughey
Email Print A A A
Commentary by Betsy McCaughey

Feb. 9 (Bloomberg) -- Republican Senators are questioning whether President Barack Obama’s stimulus bill contains the right mix of tax breaks and cash infusions to jump-start the economy.

Tragically, no one from either party is objecting to the health provisions slipped in without discussion. These provisions reflect the handiwork of
Tom Daschle, until recently the nominee to head the Health and Human Services Department.

Senators should read these provisions and vote against them because they are dangerous to your health. (Page numbers refer to H.R. 1 EH, pdf version).

The bill’s health rules will affect “every individual in the United States” (445, 454, 479). Your medical treatments will be tracked electronically by a federal system. Having electronic medical records at your fingertips, easily transferred to a hospital, is beneficial. It will help avoid duplicate tests and errors.

But the bill goes further. One new bureaucracy, the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology, will monitor treatments to make sure your doctor is doing what the federal government deems appropriate and cost effective. The goal is to reduce costs and “guide” your doctor’s decisions (442, 446). These provisions in the stimulus bill are virtually identical to what Daschle prescribed in his 2008 book, “Critical: What We Can Do About the Health-Care Crisis.” According to Daschle, doctors have to give up autonomy and “learn to operate less like solo practitioners.”

Keeping doctors informed of the newest medical findings is important, but enforcing uniformity goes too far.

New Penalties
Hospitals and doctors that are not “meaningful users” of the new system will face penalties. “Meaningful user” isn’t defined in the bill. That will be left to the
HHS secretary, who will be empowered to impose “more stringent measures of meaningful use over time” (511, 518, 540-541)

What penalties will deter your doctor from going beyond the electronically delivered protocols when your condition is atypical or you need an experimental treatment? The vagueness is intentional. In his book, Daschle proposed an appointed body with vast powers to make the “tough” decisions elected politicians won’t make.

The stimulus bill does that, and calls it the Federal Coordinating Council for Comparative Effectiveness Research (190-192). The goal, Daschle’s book explained, is to slow the development and use of new medications and technologies because they are driving up costs. He praises Europeans for being more willing to accept “hopeless diagnoses” and “forgo experimental treatments,” and he chastises Americans for expecting too much from the health-care system.

Elderly Hardest Hit
Daschle says health-care reform “will not be pain free.” Seniors should be more accepting of the conditions that come with age instead of treating them. That means the elderly will bear the brunt.

Medicare now pays for treatments deemed safe and effective. The stimulus bill would change that and apply a cost- effectiveness standard set by the Federal Council (464).

The Federal Council is modeled after a U.K. board discussed in Daschle’s book. This board approves or rejects treatments using a formula that divides the cost of the treatment by the number of years the patient is likely to benefit. Treatments for younger patients are more often approved than treatments for diseases that affect the elderly, such as osteoporosis.

In 2006, a U.K. health board decreed that elderly patients with macular degeneration had to wait until they went blind in one eye before they could get a costly new drug to save the other eye. It took almost three years of public protests before the board reversed its decision.

Hidden Provisions

If the Obama administration’s economic stimulus bill passes the Senate in its current form, seniors in the U.S. will face similar rationing. Defenders of the system say that individuals benefit in younger years and sacrifice later.

The stimulus bill will affect every part of health care, from medical and nursing education, to how patients are treated and how much hospitals get paid. The bill allocates more funding for this bureaucracy than for the Army, Navy, Marines, and Air Force combined (90-92, 174-177, 181).

Hiding health legislation in a stimulus bill is intentional. Daschle supported the Clinton administration’s health-care overhaul in 1994, and attributed its failure to debate and delay. A year ago, Daschle wrote that the next president should act quickly before critics mount an opposition. “If that means attaching a health-care plan to the federal budget, so be it,” he said. “The issue is too important to be stalled by Senate protocol.”

More Scrutiny Needed

On Friday, President Obama called it “inexcusable and irresponsible” for senators to delay passing the stimulus bill. In truth, this bill needs more scrutiny.

The health-care industry is the largest employer in the U.S. It produces almost 17 percent of the nation’s gross domestic product. Yet the bill treats health care the way European governments do: as a cost problem instead of a growth industry. Imagine limiting growth and innovation in the electronics or auto industry during this downturn. This stimulus is dangerous to your health and the economy.

(Betsy McCaughey is former lieutenant governor of New York and is an adjunct senior fellow at the Hudson Institute. The opinions expressed are her own.)
To contact the writer of this column: Betsy McCaughey at

Please call your Congressman tomorrow and tell them to vote against the revised bill that passed today (which still contains these provisions).

Wake me up when it's Over....

One of my favorite MN political blogs- Minnesota Democrats Exposed- has been nothing but recount, recount, recount for 3+ months. Coleman, Franken, lots of attorneys- it's really boring.

I know I should care more, and I'm not sure why I don't. There should be some soap opera quality to it all, but there isn't. (Besides the fact that Al Franken was in FL for 2 weeks on vacation).

I guess it's because the Dems have already shown that they have the votes in the Senate (no surprise), so what difference does it make?

I do think Norm Coleman could pull it out though, but really just wake me up when it's over.

Belt Tightening at the City Level

A good piece in the Star Trib today by Annette Meeks, Founder of The Freedom Foundation, about what some Minnesota Cities are doing in light of declining revenues and tough economic times.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Republicans Prove Once Again They are more Charitable

It is a REPUBLICAN who immediately offered Henrietta Hughes a home to live in rent-free. Chene Thompson, wife of State Rep Nick Thompson.

Of course MSNBC makes no mention of the party affiliation- neither do any of the Democrat websites I looked at- Democratic Underground or the Huffington Post.

The video also mentions that Ms. Hughes lost her home in Lehigh Acres (a suburb that the New York Times coincidentally profiled the day before Obama came to town) when her son lost his job. How old is her son? Ms. Hughes is 61-years old. I said before I was sad that she had her kids in a car for a year- but I'll assume her son is no kid.

What would you do if your mother was going to be evicted? What sacrifices would you make so that she wouldn't be homeless?

Unless her son is too ill to work, I still don't understand this story.

I wonder if there will be any "Joe the Plumber" investigation of the story- I'm really curious about her specific situation and how it could be remedied.

Oprah- I Mean Obama Makes your Dreams Come True!

Here's the video I was looking for- Henrietta Hughes, homeless and living in a truck for a year now- asking Obama for a house

Notice- she doesn't ask for a job...this is truly sad, I wonder how old her kids are? Are they all working or in school? Aren't there any Homeless Shelters in the greater Fort Myers area?

I googled and here's a map of Homeless shelters in FL- looks like there are at least seven shelters in the Ft Meyers area. I also see that there are several private, charitable organizations with housing assistance programs- like Catholic Charities.

But maybe she couldn't get to a free public library to google.

I'm heartless right? No- I'm sad. Sad that somebody has her kids in a car for a year and is waiting, hoping that somebody will save her from her situation. She had to wait until Barack Obama came to town to get help her. What if Barack Obama hadn't come to Fort Meyers that day? Would she still be waiting in line at HUD? It makes me really, really sad. I can't imagine being so dependent upon the government to change your life.

Michelle Malkin covers the story with an update here - a State Rep's wife is giving her a house. It's like an Oprah show with the free giveaway at the end.

How are YOU going to help ME??

I'm looking for some videos from yesterday's Townhall in Ft. Meyers- I heard some clips on the radio about people asking what their government can do for them- they were pretty astounding.

I did find this one

This is seriously funny- Obama worshipper is so thrilled to talk to the messiah, he's about to faint he's overcome with joy!!

When Sitting on your Ass for 5 Years Just Isn't Long Enough

Two DFL Lawmakers want to extend the maximum time that you can collect welfare in Minnesota from 5 years- to 7

From the Strib today

Legislators propose 'People's Bailout' to spare the hardest-hit

Now, Sen. David Tomassoni, DFL-Chisholm, and Rep. David Bly, DFL-Northfield, figure it's about time for the People's Bailout.

At least that's what they're dubbing a package of rather modest proposals that they say nevertheless will spare thousands of ordinary Minnesotans from further suffering as the U.S. economy searches for a bottom.

While Congress has spent billions on saving banks, Tomassoni said, "it's the average folks hit hardest by the recession that are wondering how they're going to feed their families."

Tomassoni and Bly's proposal would place a two-year moratorium on the "five-year clock" for welfare benefits. That means people who would hit Minnesota's five-year welfare limit sometime in 2010 or 2011 could collect benefits for up to two more years.

Tha, Tha, That's All Folks!

A reader sent this great graphic on the Pork-u-lus package from the Washington Post.

It's clear this bill is simply a major expansion of federal government spending on welfare and education with a little bit of money thrown at "Infrastructure". How will $17 Billion in Student Financial Aid and Pell Grants bring down rising tuition costs for everyone? How does another $79 Billion for State Grants for Education and other budget needs help to create jobs? Oh- yeah- Teacher's jobs, Union jobs....But do they think that's how the local school districts will necessarily spend the money? Or will they blow it on more administration? How much more per child do we need to spend? Here in Minnesota we already spend between $7,500-$13,000 per kid- that's more than many private schools.

The Medicaid expansion- $90 Billion- is really scary. This program is for the poor- and there's already a ton of fraud. Heck- we have a foreclosed house down the street that was owned by a woman who's now in jail for defrauding Medicare for $1.5 Million for Somalian translation services. It's the providers, it's the recipients, it's everywhere. Create a bad government program? It WILL be abused.

Medicaid currently covers kids in families making up to 300% of the federal poverty line --in MN it's 275%- that's $48,400 for single-parent family with 2 kids-- is this poor? Think about it- you have families of four- making $65,000 a year subsidizing these other families. Is that right?

The Obama/Democrat expansion would cover adults with no income requirements at all- because they're unemployed. Should we be providing free healthcare coverage to able-bodied adults who aren't poor? From a January '09 Washington Post article:

Specifically, House sources said, the government would give states the option of allowing unemployed people to join Medicaid but would not require states to do so. States could choose whether to include three groups of uninsured residents: people who are receiving or have used up unemployment benefits, no matter how much money they have; unemployed people who qualify for food stamps, which in many states are available to residents somewhat less poor than Medicaid requires; and laid-off people with incomes as much as twice the poverty level who would not otherwise qualify for Medicaid. The last group is aimed, in part, at adults without children who are not allowed into Medicaid in most states.

Great. So you could be making $100,000 a year, now you're unemployed and you can sign up for Medicaid? It's like hooking people on a drug.

Notice the military and Veterans Affairs gets only $7 Billion of the pork-u-lus plan? Less than 1% of the bill. I mean, if you want to just use straight tax-dollars to create jobs, why not increase the size of our military? Why not hire more soliders? Those are good jobs. It could also actually serve a national defense purpose too. This bias should be exposed by Republicans. 1% from pork-u-lus bill and Obama proposes a 10% cut to military spending overall while calling for massive increases to welfare and education. Boy, that makes me feel safe. Ronald Reagan out-spent the Soviets in defense- it boosted the economy and led to the end of the Cold War. Obama wants to outspend Europe on healthcare and education which will, which will, hmm...make us really healthy and smart?

One last thought from last night- Obama got testy with the word "pork" saying "there are no earmarks in this bill"--

Rush Limbaugh is the one who started calling it the pork-u-lus bill- I just like saying pork-u-lus, so that's what this "ideologue" calls it too.

I go back to what my mom said last week (she's no ideologue)-- "He's not used to taking criticism, I don't think he's going to handle it well"

She's right- if he's already letting Rush get to him- as he did again last night- this could be a long road.

Bill O'Reilly's commentary (only caught a few minutes) was right too- he's making himself the victim, building up the crisis at hand- so that if he overcomes it he will be even more praiseworthy.

I hope that somehow this thing can be stopped, but I don't think it can and we will never be able to unravel this mess.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Live Blog Obama's First Prime Time Press Conference Part 3

Old bat Helen Thomas is up- (what is she wearing- a Chewbacca vest?)

He's toning down his pronunciation of "Pahkistahn" a bit. Interesting. He's also toning down his rhetoric towards the nuclear country. More interesting.

Obama won't rule out prosecution of Bush administration officials. "Nobody's above the law". Wow, just wow!

Mara Liason asks again about bipartisanship and what Obama might do differently next time in order to get legislation passed...he says that Republicans were brought in early and consulted (was this the meeting where he said "I won" and you "can't listen to Rush Limbaugh and get things done"?)

He now goes back to "ideological rigity" -- this coming from the most liberal Senator-now President. What an ass. He's very early in the game- what one month? to be blaming the other guy. Again- he has all the votes. He's just mad that the Republicans won't give him cover.

He says "ideological" for the 20th time (his code word for Republicans) and then finishes by calling himself "the eternal optimist" (by selling fear).

Live Blog Obama's First Prime Time Press Conference Part 2

More good lines:

"You have a bunch of people who want to buy RV's, but they can't get the credit".

Doesn't he mean, they don't have the money?

If they don't have the money- should they buy an RV? I understand we need credit, but I find it hard to believe that somebody who is credit-worthy can't get a loan for an RV putting 20-30% down and get a decent interest rate. And by the way- the credit crunch is the fault of people defaulting on their mortgages. People who bought houses they couldn't afford. So now they should buy RV's that they can't afford? That will solve the problem. I'm really sorry that you can't buy an RV right now.

His answer on the timetable to withdraw troops from Afghanistan is so convoluted- Todd says "He's talking so long, we forgot the question"

"We're going to have to work smartly and effectively with consistency"-- WHAT?

But boy he says TAHL-EE-BAHN like a champ.

Major Garrett asking a Biden question- YES! It's the "30%" quote!

Biden- ah Joe!! He said (basically) that even if we get the pork-u-lus bill passed- we still may not succeed.

Obama backs up the statement (reluctantly I'm sure)- by saying that we have "big complicated tasks" left...and even if we plan well, we can't predict what will happen.

Hmm, kind of like the Iraq war- huh?

Live Blog Obama's First Prime Time Press Conference

I just put the kids to bed, I'm exhausted. It's been a long day.

Now every he is.

He's getting defensive- I'm enjoying him off-script.

The continual Bush bashing in every answer whether it's the economy or Iran looks juvenile. How much longer will the press let him get away with this? Shouldn't we be looking forward?

He continues to insult all Republicans-- which insults the people who elected them. He blames ideology for not doing anything. Is there anybody out there saying nothing should be done? Republicans just want to cut one of the highest corporate tax rates in the world to create jobs, all energy solutions on the table to create jobs, entitlement reform to cut government spending, and not bailing out states who have mismanaged their money.

Obama wants to retrofit federal buildings and buy an entire new fleet of cars for the federal government. He comes off as angry defending his plan.

Some favorite lines.

"Nurses can't read the prescriptions doctors write"


"I visited a school in South Carolina that was built in the 1850's"

Um, when was Harvard Built? How old are some of those buildings in Cambridge?

Chuck Todd asks a good question about government spending-- and Obama disagrees that spending has caused this problem. He says it's banks making loans with risky assets-- yeah, right. Sub-prime mortgages that the government BACKED negating the risk.

He's stammering now- "the notion that I wanted to come here and spend $800 Billion tha, tha, tha,"

He also says that people are not engaging in long-term financial planning right now-- interesting. Everybody I know right now is taking a long, hard look at their finances and buckling down and definitely engaging in long-term planning precisely because they're worried about job security (and the growing size of government).

Esto Es Absurdo

From today's Star Trib:

WAUNAKEE, Wis. - Some Waunakee parents are objecting to the school district teaching students about Wisconsin history in Spanish.

The Waunakee School District teaches students in first through fourth grades Spanish by having them use the language in social studies lessons for 30 minutes three days a week.

Parent Keith Wilke says he and others believe their children are being "force-fed Spanish."
Wilke says a large part of the social studies instruction is in Spanish and the children don't understand it. His daughter is in fourth grade, where Wisconsin history is covered.

Superintendent Randy Guttenberg says he understands parents' concerns about teaching complex subjects in Spanish and the classes are being monitored.

School district leaders will meet with parents Thursday night to discuss the issue.

I mean- what? If you're going to teach Wisconsin history in a foreign language- perhaps you should teach the kids a Native American language. We Minnesota/Wisconsin kids are all about American Indian History (I loved making a clay adobe with a shoe box in the 4th grade- do kids do that anymore?)

Here in Eden Prairie- at the public Spanish Immersion school- we not only teach kids history in Spanish, we teach them English in Spanish. Think about it. (This in a state with a 3.8% Hispanic population-70% of which speaks fluent English).

I have no problem with children learning other languages- I was a Spanish minor in college and majored in International relations (I barely speak a word of it, but had all A's in college- go figure.) But, there's a fantastic PRIVATE school right here in Eden Prairie, "The International School of Minnesota" where students can learn French, Spanish or Chinese.

Taking over Grades 1-4 social studies classes at a public school and including 30 minutes of Spanish instruction three times a week - is ridiculous.

Social Studies is already a second-class subject in the schools thanks to the all the other nonsense crap that's been thrown into the curriculum (outside of civics, history, geography and economics).

Many parents don't want to actually have to pay for specialized instruction and if it fits into the liberal agenda (world languages, "classical" studies, humanities, etc.)- they'll have it paid for on the public dime.

I got in a bit of a spat with a family member on this one when I said "public charter schools are basically private school for people who don't want to pay for private school". Until everyone is given school choice, I object to these "schools within schools".

But, the only way the Waukesha parents will get the message through to their obviously liberal school board? Pull their kids out.

New RNC Chair Part 2

Must-read article about New RNC Chair Michael Steel- written by Democrat strategist Bob Beckel.

Hollywood Productions....Starting Already

President Obama is going to two cities this week for "question and answer" sessions with "regular voters" seeking support for his pork-u-lus bill.

Obama Seeks Grassroots Support for Stimulus

Obama will participate in a town hall-style meeting in Elkhart, Indiana, on Monday and hold another one Tuesday in Fort Myers, Florida, another city suffering particularly hard times. On Monday night, the president will hold his first prime-time news conference.

These are campaign events!

He can't sell his program from the White House, so he has to put on his staged events followed by a PRIME TIME news conference? How many channels will be carrying "The Messiah"? So soon, Barack? So soon?

I know how these things work- I was asked to be in a John McCain townhall meeting during the campaign- but was "un-invited" after I told them that I disagreed with the Senator's Climate Change legislation (the meeting covered the topic of energy I was told). Yeah- that's right- uninvited by a State Legislator-- Nice way to treat Republican activists/donors-- do you wonder why McCain lost?

These are tightly controlled events- and now that Obama is President? It will be even more tightly controlled. Here's a Washington Post report on what went on at Bush townhall meetings- which involved the Secret Service removing people-let's see if the mainstream media covers the stories if it's the other-way-around.

There will be no "regular voters"-- it will be people with sad stories to tell asking why the government can't do more with an occassional softball question about spending.

The Republican party in IN and FL should be out protesting. Lots of signs reading "Contraception: Obama's Kind of Stimulus" "More Pork, Less Jobs" "Out-of-control spending will NOT solve our Problems" "Obama- $1 Trillion of "Spreading the Wealth"

Alas- he put this together so last minute that there may not be the time and Republicans are working today.

This will be the first of many Hollywood-style productions complete with his Union cronies organizing millions of phone calls to their Congressman. Watch out.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

An Ungentleman-Like Manner

I just watched my State Senator David Hann on last night's Almanac. Thanks for the tip, Jim!

Senator Hann is one of the most principled conservatives in the Minnesota legislature. He's also highly congenial.

Jim was right- this AFSCME representative (Eliot Seide) who "debates" Hann on the Governor's proposed pay freezes for government workers sounds like a Union goon all right and I know that accent.... When I googled- I found out that he's actually from New York- and he's a lobbyist for the government-worker's Union. Google a little more- he makes $106,000 a year with over $20,000 from political contributions. He's also on the Board of Directors for Health Partners.

(He loves the word ironic too!)

But Mr. Siede is ALL ABOUT the little guy doncha know? He repeats over and over again that the average AFSCME worker in MN makes only $38,000 a year and rails on the Minnesota wealthy. He sure seems to know Minnesota!

"if the folks who made over $250,000 in this state- if they only paid the same amount of taxes as the average Minnesotan, we'd be able to raise a billion dollars"

"people who make over $250,000 need to pay their fair share"

Seide can spin every statistic he wants- here's the facts- married couples filing jointly- who make over $131,970 pay 7.85% of that income to the state on Minnesota, those who make $33,220 pay 7.05% to the state and those who make under that amount pay 5.35% to the state. This is on top of the completely out-of-whack income tiers at the federal level. PLEASE don't tell me that households earning over $250,000 don't pay their fair share of taxes. They pay MORE than their "fair" share of taxes.

People who make the top 5% of earners in this country- those making over $153,542 pay over 60% of the total federal tax burden. The bottom 50%- those who make under $31, 987 a year pay only 2.99% of this country's taxes- that's 50% of the total taxpayers vs. 5%! Do the math!! And guess what? That bottom 50% of people- their tax burden keeps going DOWN while the top 5% keeps going up! Isn't that called taxation without representation??

Mr. Seide's proposal is no salary freezes for government employees, he also wants guarantees on "no layoff's" too. So government workers should be totally protected from an economic downturn...that's the Union plan. If you work in the private sector and make $38,000 a year? Well screw you!

Let's state another simple fact- the Governor is proposing that Minnesota government workers take the same salary as last year in response to a $5 Billion budget deficit . Oh gasp! That's horrible! Nobody is stopping workers from seeking other employment outside the hallowed halls of the government. No- they're just supposed to be guaranteed total job security. That's why we fought the American Revolution you know- the right to keep the same job with a fair and steady pay increase annually for the rest of our lives.

You know what REALLY IRKS me- it's our tax dollars that pay this guy's salary because it's the Union dues of GOVERNMENT employees that PAY HIM.

Please note my bias: I don't like Unions- it's in my blood. My grandpa was an Irish delivery truck driver in New York City and was harassed by the Unions. And unions for government workers- where they take our tax money to fund Democrats and redistribution of wealth schemes- are the worst of them. Oh to have a fighting Irish girl on Almanac to deal with this guy. I have my own little spin on Minnesota Nice :)

Make Minnesota a "Right to Work" state and let's get on with it. Let's set the timer to see how long it is before I get a threat by posting this on my blog...tick, tock.

Afternoon in St. Paul

Todd and I took the girls over to St. Paul to hit "Traditions" furniture store and catch lunch. When we venture into the Twin Cities we know we're going to be out of place in our big SUV and cute clothes. We know we're away from our people and in the land of libs and bumper-sticker covered Suburus. We were up for it today, so off we went.

We really wanted to go to Cafe Latte- but they were absolutely packed, so we went next door to local chain "Bonfire"-- it was very good. Excellent Walleye Sandwich and Fries!

There was a cute clothing/accessories store in the same indoor walkway as the restaurant and I did some heavy browsing. The owner/buyer has a good eye and had a nice mix of locally made and nationally know brands for kids and women. Lots of adorable stuff for babies and some fun handbags and wallets.

Then Todd said "Sheila, look at this!"-- He was taking a picture with his phone- right next to the the cash register--

Why? Why? Why is this in my face everywhere I go? I can't even shop in peace.

I laughed and said "Well, I was thinking about buying something until I saw that" and we left.

As a former retail queen and wanna-be boutique owner- I would never have a gigantic "George Bush" balloon sitting in my store. I wouldn't have any political stuff in my store- and that's coming from moi. Why? Because I'm a capitalist and I want your money whether you're a Republican, Democrat or Green Party member. In fact, if I size you up as a big lib, I'll even know exactly how to pitch you "this is made of 100% organic cotton, made by a local artist". That's capitalism, it's also called customer service.

Republicans- in general- are all like this. But the Dems? NOOOOOO! They have to put it right in our faces.

Do they owners think that visibly supporting Obama shows that "we're really down to earth people, don't mind that we carry $55 kid's tee's and $125 women's jeans"? Or do they just think "He won, we're in St. Paul, this is cool"? WHO exactly do they think dishes out that kind of dough? It ain't a large group of people.

To me that balloon says "I voted for your taxes to be raised, I'm too dumb to realize that may affect your disposable income and my business, but I have enough money myself that I don't care".

Now- I see this store is on the Cafe Latte website, so it's under the same management (good think we didn't eat there I guess). With a highly successful restaurant subsidizing you- you may be able to stay in business while still openly touting your political views. My bet though? They won't turn much of a profit.

Here's a picture from another St. Paul store we stopped into:

A booksigning for yet another children's book about Barack Obama.
Now this bookstore did strike a balance though and carried these items too:

But, I just want liberals to think about how they'd feel if half the stores they walked into had Republican paraphernalia by the cash registers...I mean I had a woman accost me (with Todd and the kids) at the EP Talbots last year because I SAID the word Republican loud enough for her to hear it. Yes- I'm serious, she said "Republican party- please! You shouldn't talk about that here!" I should have said "Is this Russia? and You need to pluck your eyebrows", but I was so taken aback, I just walked out of the store.

You see we Republicans just have to sit back and deal with it. Deal with this maniacal worshipping of a man who has yet to do anything besides win an election. Deal with the in-your-face push for a far-left agenda and blatant movement towards a dependency society. And it's not just St. Paul and the new President, it's in our EP shops too- who push local liberals at us in the same way.

Well, I'm with new GOP Chair Michael Steele- I'm not going to be so polite anymore, I'm going to "bring it to them". It's how they won. It's how we can win again too.