Sunday, June 29, 2008

More Questions About Flood Rescue Stratgy

Here is another take on the flooding - you can see that the comparisons are not lost on the general public - the Democrats can't hide from the 60 years of control of New Orleans and the results are still there for all to see. Nothing has changed.

The self reliance shown by people of the mid-west stands so far apart from the 'people' in N.O. that were in the same situation. Also, there was/is zero looting. I have pretty much given up hope for the 'victims' of that culture.


Nothing Has Changed (author unknown)

Sad, very, very sad...Something to think about.

Where are all of the Hollywood celebrities holding telethons asking for help in restoring Iowa and helping the folks affected by the floods?

Where are the $2,000 debit cards that were spent at strip clubs?

What happened to the FEMA trailers that were stripped to the walls? Where is all the media asking the tough questions about why the federal government hasn't solved the problem?Asking where the FEMA trucks (and trailers) are?

Why isn't the Federal Government relocating Iowa people to free hotels in Chicago? When will Spike Lee say that the Federal Government blew up the levees that failed in Des Moines?

Where are Sean Penn and the Dixie Chicks?

Where are all the looters stealing high-end tennis shoes and big screen television sets? When will we hear Governor Chet Culver say that he wants to rebuild a 'vanilla' Iowa, because that's the way God wants it?

Where is the hysterical 24/7 media coverage complete with reports of cannibalism?

Where are the people declaring that George Bush hates white, rural people? How come in 2 weeks, you will never hear about the Iowa flooding ever again? Believe it, it won't take that long.

Because good people helping each other out is not news worthy, the media is full of BS!

Our Creator Moves in Mysterious Ways

I don't know who the author is of this great story but it reveals just how the good Lord has a plan for all of us - all we have to do is believe that he does.

The Pastor and the Cat

Dwight Nelson recently told a true story about the pastor of his church. He had a kitten that climbed up a tree in his garden and then was afraid to come down. The pastor coaxed, offered warm milk, etc. The kitten would not come down.

The tree was not sturdy enough to climb, so the pastor decided that if he tied a rope to the tree and then to his car so that when he moved the car the tree bent down, he could then reach up and get the kitten. He did!

All the while, checking his progress in the car frequently, he figured if he went just a little bit further, the tree would be bent sufficiently for him to reach the kitten. But as he moved a little further forward, the rope broke. The tree went 'boing!' and the kitten instantly sailed through the air - out of sight.

The pastor felt terrible. He walked all over the neighborhood asking people if they'd seen a little kitten. No. Nobody had seen a stray kitten So he prayed, 'Lord, I just commit this kitten to your keeping,' and went on about his business.

A few days later he was at the grocery store, and met one of his church members that lived behind him. He happened to look into her shopping cart and was amazed to see cat food. This woman was a cat hater and every one knew it, so he asked her, 'Why are you buying cat food when you hate cats so much?' She replied, 'You won't believe this,' and told him how her little girl had been begging her for a cat, but she kept refusing.

Then a few days before, the child had begged again, so the mother finally told her little girl, 'Well, if God gives you a cat, I'll let you keep it.' She told the pastor, 'I watched my child go out in the yard, get on her knees, and ask God for a cat. And really, Pastor, you won't believe this, but I saw it with my own eyes, a kitten suddenly came flying out of the blue sky, with its paws outspread, and landed right in front of her.'

Never underestimate the Power of God and His unique sense of humor.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Midwest Flood : Where Are The Victims?

After seeing what the floods did here in Wisconsin and Iowa, I was sure the media would give this a lot of coverage - heh - no, not really - when I saw the first pictures of houses falling into the rushing water, I was sure the media types would do just what they had to and no more - making up stories about how the government didn't care about the Midwesterners and their problems wouldn't fly with the general public.

Nobody really cared all that much anyway because everyone knew we would do what ever we had to to fix the problem and carry on with out lives. After all what's in the Midwest that could be ruined anyway - yuk - yuk. It's not like where real smart people live.

The general consensus is the Midwest is "flyover country" and if there is a problem our here, nobody cares all that much where the "real" people live, on the coasts. Also, the media types are not stupid, totally biased for sure, but not stupid enough to try and spin this tragedy into another New Orleans. The people out here wouldn't buy that line even though the left and right coast might. A couple of days should be enough.

This little comparison between the two 'flood tragedies' reveals how different the two areas of the country are and how history could have predicted the outcomes.

The author is unknown but we will enjoy their insight while we keep the faith and rearm ourselves for the battle that's in progress.

Iowa verses Louisiana

Have you all noticed that Cedar Rapids is under 10 feet of water. Thousands upon thousands of people are displaced?

Have you noticed that nobody is looting every empty property in sight ?

Have you noticed that nobody is shooting at rescuers?

Have you noticed any victims on TV wondering where the federal government is to 'take care of them'?

Or, have you noticed victims, who have lost everything, make comments like 'life goes on', 'we'll just need to pick up the pieces and start over', and 'at least we still have our life'.

Maybe Government could help make "victims"of these survivors as well, convince them that they aren't strong enough to take care of themselves, they're not smart enough to survive.

Maybe we should subsidize their lives for the next 2+years, free housing, $2000/month to not work.... Just food for thought

Have you noticed that the media does not make nearly as big a deal of this as they did of Katrina in New Orleans? Maybe if they could find an angle that says: "Bush doesn't care about minorities" they would give the kind of coverage they did in New Orleans.

But wait, the water will eventually break through and make its way down river to New Orleans. Then we will see the coverage change. Then it will be a moral tragedy and evidence that Republicans don't care about minorities.

Then you will see Obama and Sharpton on the scene. The news will explain why the people are frustrated and that is why they shoot at the rescue helicopters and loot and steal.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Managing Reality : The New Democrat Dream World

I find it most interesting when people completely deny, or refuse to recognize, a truth, even in it's simplest form. Maybe 'interesting' isn't the best word to describe a psychological break down in rational thinking. To survive, they have to manage reality to suit their fantasies of adequacy.

Maybe most of the individuals that suffer from this irrational behavior simply need to believe in anything that solves their most inner fears of inadequacy and irrelevance in this big world.

Maybe it's because they have no history to fall back on as most everything they have ever done in their small lives amounted to nothing. They have nothing to fall back to help them cope with the present let alone future problems. Hence they grab at anything that proposes to support their hollow world.

What the scares me the most is we, in America, the greatest county in history, have nearly half of the voting population that falls into this category. How did this happen?

This article, by Ralph Peters, illuminates several of the ideologies that drive the weak of our population. Again, I don't know how they became this way, they have everything that is necessary to live the good life and the promise of a bright future. And yet they can't see, or don't want to see, the greatness that surrounds them and how lucky they are to be a part of this greatness.

Everything in their lives is a negative. They are blinded by the light of success. They are most happy when they are in darkness, hiding 'from' the light, reveling in failure of their nonexistence and failed lives. The light only complicates their lives as the light are facts, solutions and truth.

In the end they are not like the rest of us, they are different, they are children of failure and not solutions.

Keep the faith, the battle has begone.


IRAQ FAIRY TALES
By RALPH PETERS June 21, 2008

WORKING out last Monday, I heard a campaign flunky on TV insist that progress in Iraq is an illusion. "The war isn't over until all of the troops come home!" she grumped. Guess we're still at war with Germany. And Japan. Even Italy. Oh, and let's not forget all of our military bases occupying the Confederacy.

The poor woman knew nothing about warfare, history - or Iraq. She just wanted to see her candidate win in November and wasn't going to let reality get in the way. And one look told you she didn't even know any "troops."

But after my initial shrug (back to the bench for more crunches), it struck me how wrong I'd been on a point I'd argued for two decades: I claimed that Western societies have an advantage because of their insistence on factual data. Yet, since 9/11, I've seen and heard no end of my fellow citizens' arguing from blind passion and utterly refusing to ingest facts that didn't match their prejudices (left or right).

Since the turnabout in Iraq began a year and a half ago, the rejection of reality has become an outright pathology for the quit-Iraq-and-free-the-terrorists set. I've watched millions of my countrymen and countrywomen insist that fantasies are real.

In a classic through-the-looking-glass reversal last year, Sen. Hillary Clinton told Gen. David Petraeus, the man who turned Iraq around, that 'his' reports of progress were fairy tales. It was the world turned upside down.

Since that woman on TV "explained" victory last Monday, I've thought about the different kinds of people who refuse either to accept that the situation in Iraq has improved remarkably or that quitting now would have serious consequences. When I break down the "fairy tales can come true" crowd, the first division is into vendors and consumers.

Determined to elect the president of its choice, the "mainstream" media has collapsed into outright lies and whopping distortions. And, of course, political hacks will do anything to get their candidate elected. It's the "consumers" of fairy tales - those desperate to believe - who are more interesting.

They come in several basic flavors, two of which we can quickly set aside:

*Protesting university students.* Don't worry about them. Once they graduate and get a dose of reality, most of the kids will do fine. The need for liberal-arts undergrads to prance to the left is virtually hormonal.

*Hollywood stars and other celebrities.* No worries there, either. Just check out the box-office receipts for the dozen or so self-righteous anti-war (/anti-military/) films. These folks are so far removed from reality that they believe the roles they play give them genuine expertise. Don't get irate - just laugh. (Coming soon: Susan Sarandon on quantum physics!)

But there's 'another' sad bunch:

*My generation.* Those of us from our mid-50s into early 60s. The florid youth of yesteryear who declared they were going to change the world, made a mess others had to clean up - and the high point of whose lives came in a protest march down University Boulevard, chanting, "Ho-ho-ho Chi Minh! NLF is gonna win!"

The key to understanding the aging activists' bitterness toward the military (disguised as concern for the common soldier) and their obsession with the rights of terrorists is that this cobbled-together cause gives them one last chance to rise above their disappointing lives and to recapture, for one Viagra-assisted moment, their glory days of raised little fists and bell-bottoms.

Reality proved bitter for this bunch. In an infuriating turnabout, it was the nerds in the comp-science classes, the geeks with punch cards in their shirt pockets, who changed the world (and became billionaires). It just doesn't seem fair that the folks with multiple degrees in Comparative Literature ended up, at best, with tenure at an obscure college, serial divorces and a failed book or two. My generation's sense of entitlement is, of course, legendary.

But most of us got jobs and got on with our lives. Only a soured minority never got over that brief moment in the sun before the communes fell apart because someone had to do the dishes (and pay for the penicillin). Just as no evidence was ever going to convince them that Communists might not all be virtuous, 'nothing' is going to convince them that Iraq is emerging as a better place, for its own people and for us, than it was under Saddam Hussein.

They 'need' to believe that our country, having failed to recognize their innate greatness, is 'wrong.'

I'd pity them, if the stakes weren't so high. If aging activists really want to change the world for the better, facing reality would be a great first step. Magic beanstalks don't really grow into the clouds. That's still a minivan, pal, before ,and, after midnight. Little Red Riding Hood doesn't always make it safely home to the Upper West Side.And the United States isn't always evil.

Ralph Peters' new book, "Looking for Trouble: Adventures in a Broken World," will be published on July 4.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

More Humor for the Soul - Underwear Dust

The battle of the sexes goes on - heh


Underwear Dust

One evening a husband, thinking he was being funny, said to his wife "Perhaps we should start washing your clothes in Slim Fast. Maybe it would take a few inches off of your butt!"

His wife was not amused and decided that she simply couldn't let such a comment go unrewarded.

The next morning the husband took a pair of underwear out of his drawer. "What the heck is this?" he said to himself as a little 'dust' cloud appeared when he shook them out.

"Honey" he hollered into the bathroom, "why did you put talcum powder in my underwear?"

She replied ..."Oh, it's not talcum powder.....it's 'Miracle Grow!"

United Nations Is A Free World Discrace

I don't know where to start - how does one confront such nonsense? - maybe if you read yesterdays post and then this one you and I can come to grips with the insanity that is the United Nations.

The UN is made up of third world nations that take pride in the fact that their population are completely under control, and, of course, those that find totalitarian repression unacceptable are dealt with under the law. That is, they are executed.

For the United Nations to decide that Britain must change hundreds of years of tradition to satisfy the demands of tyrannical mass kills and human butcher that make up the Human Rights Council of the UN is beyond comprehension. For a democratic and free country like Britain to come under attack for it's love of Queen is just one more reason to demand the UN be completely reorganized or disbanded. I want it gone.

In the face of such absurdity, we, as Americans and citizens of a free and democratic country, must be aware of the Marxist influence that is slowly overtaking this already socialist institution. It doesn't take too much imagination to see how this has happened over the years but it seems now an accelerated effort is being made to take complete Marxist socialist control of the UN at the expense of freedom and Democracy. And, of course, while America pays the bill.

As Americans and members of the freest country on the planet, we have to watch this closely as it can and will effect us directly now and in the future. Our congress, for the most parts, believes the UN is a good thing, Marxists socialist members, as it supports UN universal world wide gun control, world health care, a tax structure suited to world populations and a military that is under the control of the UN are just a few of their insane proposals. Oh, did I mention they want to get rid of Israel completely?

It makes sense to keep watch on our freedom, there are those that want to take it away - keep the faith while we do battle.

Britain should get rid of the monarchy, says UN
By Nick Allen

A United Nations report says Britain should abolish its monarchy.
13 Jun 08:

The UN said that the UK must consider asking the public whether they would like to keep the Royal Family.

The UN Human Rights Council said the UK must "consider holding a referendum on the desirability or otherwise of a written constitution, preferably republican".

The council has 29 members including Saudi Arabia, Cuba and Sri Lanka.
It was the Sri Lankan envoy who raised concerns over the British monarchy.
Article continues

The resulting report said Britain should have a referendum on the monarchy and the need for a written constitution with a bill of rights.

The monarchy costs each adult in Britain around 62p a year but even groups representing taxpayers said there was no case for getting rid of it.

Matthew Elliott, chief executive of the TaxPayers' Alliance, said: "With so many human rights abuses around the world the UN should be busy reporting on issues of starvation, execution and the denial of the vote to huge numbers of people around the world.

"Saudi Arabia and Cuba should pay a little more attention to their own human rights record."
The UN report was also critical of the UK's treatment of immigrants from Sudan.

Syrian representatives accused the UK of discriminating against Muslims and Iran complained about the UK's record on tackling sexual discrimination.

A royal source said: "People here certainly haven't detected any appetite for a referendum. The Queen is a focus for national unity, identity and pride."

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

United Nations Elects Marxist Socialist President

I strongly believe it is time to think about moving the United Nations out of the United States and cutting off all funding. It doesn't make sense to have an organization that supports tyrants and mass killers as part of America. This organization is apposed to everything that we stand for as a nation and what all free nations so dearly cherish. Freedom and Democracy.

With the election of D'Escoto as president of the UN, we shouldn't have any trouble deciding to have a major change in this organization. It's clear to me that having a communist elected to lead the general assembly goes beyond what the founders had in mind for an organization that is supposed to help bring world piece.

The way I see this election at the UN, is the only world piece that D'Escoto will bring is the piece that comes with the death of freedom.

Get on the horn or e-mail your rep and demand something be done about this crazy situation.
Keep the faith, the battle for freedom never ends.

The UN Sinks to New Depths
by and
Posted: 06/09/2008

Last week’s unopposed election of Nicaraguan Reverend Miguel D’Escoto Brockmann as the next President of the 192-member United Nations General Assembly will further undermine the standing of the UN in the eyes of the American public.

D’Escoto served as foreign minister of Nicaragua during the Sandinista dictatorship of Daniel Ortega in the 1980s and is known for his extreme, stridently anti-American views.

In a June 2004 radio interview with Democracy Now, the Los Angeles-born Roman Catholic priest referred to former President Reagan as “the butcher of my people”, who was “responsible for the deaths of some 50,000 Nicaraguans,” and a leader who was “possessed by demons.”

According to D’Escoto the United States was “the greatest enemy of the right of self-determination of peoples” and declared Americans to be “the most ignorant people around the world.”

D’Escoto was the pick of the 33-nation Latin American and Caribbean group within the UN. Under the system of regional rotation the bloc was able to put forward its own candidate for the presidency of the General Assembly (which controls the UN budget) without challenge from the rest of the world. He will take office at the next Assembly meeting in September, succeeding the low-key former foreign minister of Macedonia, Srgjan Kerim.

There is every chance that D’Escoto will abuse his status by turning the presidency into a platform for his anti-U.S. vitriol. The position will provide a high profile bully pulpit for launching ferocious attacks on U.S. foreign policy, and the traditional neutrality of the presidency is likely to be shattered by the presence of a far left ideological zealot with a deep hatred for America.

He already used his inaugural speech to blast Washington’s “acts of aggression, such as those occurring in Iraq and Afghanistan”, and has demonstrated no intention of acting as a non-partisan force promoting international cooperation.

D’Escoto will arrive at the UN with a record of active support not only for anti-Americanism but also Marxism-Leninism. An ardent defender of Liberation Theology, D’Escoto achieved prominence in the struggle to topple the Somoza dynasty in the late 1970’s. As a member of Los Doce (“the 12”), D’Escoto helped mask the communist orientation of the Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN) and played a key role in the Marxists’ rise to power.

After the Sandinistas began installing a Cuban-style dictatorship and marched comfortably with Fidel Castro, the Soviet Union and a bevy of Third World despots, D’Escoto served as Nicaragua’s foreign minister, taking the U.S. to the International Court of Justice over its support for the Nicaraguan Contras. For these efforts, D’Escoto was awarded the Lenin Peace Prize by the Soviets in1985.

In the 1990s, with Daniel Ortega and the FSLN out of power, reformist elements tried and failed to transform the party and break Ortega’s personal stranglehold. D’Escoto sided with Ortega, sticking with his old boss through an ugly sex abuse scandal and the political pact with Arnoldo Alem├ín, Nicaragua’s corrupt Liberal leader, which paved the way for the FSLN’s return to power in 2006 with just 38% of the popular vote.

As an adviser to Ortega, D’Escoto sided with Nicaragua’s turn to Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez and the embrace of the Bolivarian brand of aggressive populism. He was also supportive of Ortega’s budding ties with Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, culminating in Iranian investment deals, reciprocal visits and Ortega’s endorsement of Iran’s demand to develop its nuclear capabilities before the UN General Assembly in 2007.

Nicaragua is rapidly emerging as a key friend and an ally of some of the most odious regimes on the face of the earth, and the presence of one of its key political figures at the head of the UN General Assembly is a demonstration of the organization’s callous disregard for the principles of liberty and freedom on the world stage.

The appointment of Miguel D’Escoto underscores yet again the UN’s growing irrelevance. It takes place against the backdrop of the World Food Organization summit in Rome, a sickening feast for some of the world’s most brutal tyrants, from Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe to Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Last week’s general assembly election is the latest nail in the coffin of the UN’s reputation as a world body, and another pitiful example of its relentless decline.

*Ray Walser, a Senior Policy Analyst for Latin America at the Heritage Foundation, also contributed to this article.



Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Strategy for Liberal Socialist Energy Policy : Buy Energy Stocks

If Obama becomes president, one thing is clear, we will be paying more for everything including energy and getting less of it. Brown-outs and black-outs will be common in the summer and foreclosures on homes will increase due to owners having to sell of leave because they can't afford to heat or cool their homes.

Is this a joke, maybe, but rest assured the cost of energy will go beyond anything we can imagine today - the conventional wisdom is we are in a bubble and it's only a matter of time before it bursts to bring down the price of fuel. But I believe this won't happen if the liberal socialists progressives get into total power in November.

Their strategy, the socialists, is we have to cut back on energy use - like we have to ride our bikes more, set thermostats up in the summer, back in the winter and get rid of our vans, SUV's and trucks of all sizes. Oh, and we have to eat less as the cost of food will be beyond the cost of energy. Remember it was the liberal socialist idea to convert corn into ethanol. Now corn is over $7 a bushel. Yikes. Riots over seas because of the lack of food due to corn being used for fuel.

The liberal socialist progressive agenda is, in one word, "suffer". I believe conservation is a good thing in it's self, but what the socialists have in mind is not just that we have to suffer with less energy, they want to control the populations environment by starving it. A population living on the edge is a population that can be manipulated to do the bidding of those in control of all the resources. And what better way to do this than limit the access to energy. The economy goes down hill, unemployment skyrockets and we freeze and roast in our homes - who to blame for this unfortunate situation - that damn Bush and the Republicans! But wait, there's good news in the new life.

What a great life we have now - big government, big brother, making life more secure - and if you don't like this way, they have a place for you that will change your mind. A place to help you come to grips with the new ways of life in America. You will feel much better about your self after having put aside the old worn out ways of freedom and Democracy.

What do you think global warming is all about but one of the ways to control your energy consumption and your way of life. There is no man made global warming, it's not about the environment, it's about control.

Well, sometime I get a little carried away but this scenario is not out of the question. I have always believed that everything we do or have is directly related in some way to energy consumption.

As always, stay awake, find hard scientific facts about energy and keep the faith, common sense will fight the battle!


*Brownout Stocks*

William Baldwin 06.30.08

A commodity suffers either a disruption in supply or a spike in demand. Sure to happen next: The price goes up.

Pretty simple, right? But it's way beyond the economic understanding of politicians. Their instinctive reaction to rising commodity prices is to attempt a repeal of the law of supply and demand. That is, they like rationing and price controls.

We saw this phenomenon in the gasoline lines of the 1970s, and we are about to witness it again, as electricity runs short of demand. Get ready for rolling blackouts and/or equipment-frying brownouts. The sort of electric utility disaster that descended on California in 2000 and 2001 will afflict other parts of the country in a few years, predicts energy analyst Mark Mills

In demonstrably short supply are new power plants, especially of the coal and nuclear variety. Neighbors don't want them around, so they don't get built. Hey, why not raise the price? Offer the neighbors a bribe, just big enough to get a plant built. A billion dollars might do it. Then charge that sum to ratepayers.

Alas, politicians get elected by denouncing price increases and denouncing power plants, so any kind of marketplace solution like this is not going to occur.

Do you remember what happened when the government tried to repeal the laws of economics in 1973 and 1979? If the price of gasoline needs to be $2 to make supply match demand, but the price is set at $1 by decree, drivers just pay the other dollar in an indirect way. That's how much of their time and their fuel they will burn up waiting in line with motors idling.

We'll see the same kind of waste when electric power runs short. Desperate to avoid disruptions, businesses and even homeowners will buy backup generators. These appliances are guaranteed to spew more carbon into the air than the coal plants that could have replaced them. Rather than curse the darkness, invest in government mismanagement.

There aren't any good pure-play stocks in backup power, but *Cummins (67, CMI) *and *Caterpillar (81 CAT)*, both excellent companies, have some exposure here. *Schneider Electric* *(124, SU)* and *Emerson Electric* *(57, EMR)* sell, among many other things, devices that help industrial customers cope with unreliable electric grids. Utilities may end up running their peak-power natural-gas-fired power plants around the clock, which would be good for *Anadarko Petroleum (80, APC) *and *Chesapeake Energy* *(60, CHK)*.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Congressional Ignorance Stops oil Exploration AND Production

Ever wonder how some members of congress ever got into office? From where I stand it sure wasn't because they were the smartest people in the room. They got into office by being smooth talkers, most are lawyers, go figure.

And did you ever wonder why more than 48% of the voting public keeps reelecting the same people year after year? Isn't frustrating trying to figure out why congressional officials have completely set aside common sense and replaced it with an agenda that doesn't have anything to do with the American people?

Another question that I have is how did we get to this point where our elected officials don't represent us, the people, anymore? When did they become royalty. Why is it they do not have to take responsibility for anything that they do, no matter how far from reality they are?

We have to change this and it has to be done soon - November is a good place to start but it can't end there - we need to oust all of those elected officials that believe they are more qualified to decide what is best for America rather then the people themselves. We put them in office - we can take them out as well.

This article is by the petroleum industry explaining how oil leasing works - yeah, I know they lie all the time, according to congress that is, but members of congress have no room to talk. Still it's very informative and I believe accurate. What motive do they have to lie? You decide.

Now, again, keep the faith and call that representative. Tell them to get off the dime and release the federal lands and do it now. Hey, the land belongs to us, the people, remember - not congressional buffoons. See, the battle is joined!


The 'Idle' Oil Field Fallacy*
By RED CAVANEY June 20, 2008

A bill introduced in Congress this week would "compel" oil and natural gas companies to produce from federal lands they are leasing. If only it were that easy to find and produce oil. Imagine, an act of Congress that could do what geology could not.

These lawmakers ask why oil and gas companies want more access to federal lands to drill if they aren't using all of the 68 million acres they already have? Anyone with even the most basic understanding of how oil and natural gas are produced – and this should include many members of Congress – knows that claims of "idle" leases are a diversionary feint.

A company bids for and buys a lease because it believes there is a possibility that it may yield enough oil or natural gas to make the cost of the lease, and the costs of exploration and production, commercially viable. The U.S. government received $3.7 billion from company bids in a single lease sale in March 2008.

However, until the actual exploration is complete, a company does not know whether the lease will be productive. If, through exploration, it finds there is no oil or natural gas underneath a lease – or that there is not enough to justify the tremendous investment required to bring it to the surface – the company cuts its losses by moving on to more promising leases. Yet it continues to pay rent on the lease, atop a leasing bonus fee.

In addition, if the company does not develop the lease within a certain period of time, it must return it to the federal government, forfeiting all its costs. All during this active exploration and evaluation phase, however, the lease is listed as "nonproducing."Obviously, companies want to start producing from active fields as soon as possible. However, there are a number of time-consuming steps to be taken before they can do so:

Delineation wells must be drilled to size the field, government permits must be obtained, and complex production facilities must be engineered and installed. All this takes considerable time, and during that time, the lease is also listed as "nonproducing."Because a lease is not producing, critics tag it as "idle" when, in reality, it is typically being actively explored and developed.

Multiply these real-world circumstances by hundreds or thousands of leases, and you end up with the seemingly damning but inaccurate figures our critics cite. Our companies have made tremendous strides in developing cutting-edge exploration technology. But they are not magicians. They cannot produce oil or natural gas where it does not exist.

A significant percentage of federal leases simply may not contain oil and natural gas, especially in commercial quantities. As I've often said, the first step in our business is called "exploration" for a reason. Exploration is time consuming, very costly and involves a great deal of risk. Importantly, you see neither a drop of usable oil nor a cubic foot of natural gas while it is going on. But it is absolutely essential, and there is nothing "idle" about it. Without the exploration that took place years ago, less domestic oil and natural gas would be available today to meet consumer demand.

In reality, a lease is simply a block on a map, with no guarantee that it contains any resources. If all of them did, one could simply pay for the lease, haul in equipment and start pumping oil. But that only happens in fiction. And it happens in the minds of those who use the undeveloped-lease argument as a smokescreen to mask their intent to keep America's vast energy resources locked up underground, despite increasingly strong consumer demand for oil and natural gas.

For exploration to take place, our companies need access to the areas – offshore and onshore – that we know have the potential to produce the oil and natural gas consumers will need, if ours is to remain a viable economy in an increasingly competitive global marketplace.

Today's short-term need was yesterday's long-term opportunity. If Congress had acted on that opportunity years ago, America would not be in the energy bind it finds itself in today. Working /with/ industry, Congress now has the opportunity to help secure America's energy future. It should not miss the chance again.*

Mr. Cavaney is president and CEO of the American Petroleum Institute, the trade association that represents America's oil and natural gas industry.*

Sunday, June 22, 2008

US Citizens Demand More Gas - Democrats Say NO!

Here are some interesting things to think about when getting into your car to fill up your tank at the local gas dispenser. Believe it or not we are not alone on this planet. There are actually more people using gasoline in this small world than we do and will use a lot more then we do in the future.

What it comes down to is, who will get to the supply first and who will control it. The United States has a huge supply just waiting to released but our government has decided, we the people, can't have it. The government has decided it is better for us to have out lives flushed down the toilet as we watch our economy being crushed under ever increasing gas prices.

The Chinese are going to drill off our coast along with the Cubans, but we can't - common sense on our part? And we are going to sue the Chinese if they have an oil spill that wreaks havoc on our coast? Fat chance!

Every aspect of our lives is effected by fossil fuel. Alternatives are years in the future and no matter how much the eco-fascists demand that we suffer until the alternatives can be developed, oil is the only way we can move forward as a nation. There is no other way for the foreseeable future. To believe other wise is only fantasy.

Get on the tube or dial the number of your representative now and demand they release our oil supplies as President Bush has wanted them to for mant years now. The President can't do it - only congress can.

And just guess who is standing in the way and has for years? That's right, the liberals Marxist socialists, the Democrats, and their eco-fascist pals.

Drill now - Drill here - lower gas prices - keep the faith, the battle is starting to turn our way.

June 19, 2008 ( from Agoara Financial's 5 min forecast) [I have deleted some items that do not pretain to the topic of energy]

Americans are driving less these days - it is the biggest reduction since gas shortage scare of 1979 . Gas prices remain at records highs.

Also how fuel costs are about to damage the U.S. education system.


Two booming Chinese industries, in spite of the crashing Shanghai Composite
CEOs, CFOs and the world's best fund manager say credit crunch is far from over.

Americans have cut back driving by over 30 billion miles, reports the Federal Highway Administration. From November 2007-April 2008, FHWA's latest data show total miles traveled declined 1%, or around 30 billion miles, from the same time in 2006-2007. Such a drop is the biggest since 1979, when the Iranian revolution spurred a U.S. gas shortage.

Put another way, drivers are moving about at the same rate as in 2005, when 8 million fewer people lived in the U.S.


"[Previously], people might change their pattern for a short period of time," says Mary Peters, secretary of transportation, "but it almost always bounced back very quickly. We're not seeing that now."

And we wouldn't expect it anytime soon. The average gas price from November-April was around $3.30 a gallon.

The national average gas price remains the same this morning: $4.07 , a cent from its all-time high. Diesel remains at its record high, or $4.79 a gallon, up 68%, or $1.90, from this time last year.

Even those not old enough to drive are about to get hurt by high gas prices.
Around 475,000 diesel-running school buses transport 25 million children to school every day in the U.S., says The Wall Street Journal today. According to the American School Bus Council, those half million buses drive around 4.3 billion miles a year.

At today's prices, schools are set to spend $2 billion on fueling busses this year, a $600 million increase from 2007.

Meanwhile, the market for Chinese SUVs is thriving. Sales of SUVs were up 40% in the first four months of this year, double the growth rate of the Chinese market for normal cars.

There's even an odd 'gray market' for Hummers sprouting, while GM officially has no Hummer dealers in China, the FT reports 15 dealerships in Beijing alone are selling the things. Some manufacturers are quickly designing spinoffs, like Dongfeng Auto's cleverly named HanMa.


"As a boy, I always dreamt of owning a big car," a Hummer-driving Chinese real estate executive told the FT. "There are plenty of other sources of pollution than cars, and life is short, so we should enjoy ourselves, anyway."

Saturday, June 21, 2008

How Common Sense Works

Everyone wonders why it is so difficult for our elected leaders to just say "wow, we need to drill for more oil so the gas price will come down and we sure need to do it now" Supply and demand - the market at work - da! Why is this concept so difficult to understand? I am very frustrated with the senate and the congress as a group. These people are not the smartest that we can find, are they?

The following illustrates how it could work if only congress would step out side of their ivory tower and look around. Yikes.

Keep the faith, the battle is in progress.

Three Things to Ponder:

1. Cows
2. The Constitution
3. The Ten Commandments

C O W S

Is it just me, or does anyone else find it amazing that during the mad cow epidemic our government could track a single cow, born in Canada almost three years ago, right to the stall where she slept in the state of Washington? And, they tracked her calves to their stalls. But they are unable to locate 11 million illegal aliens wandering aroundour country. Maybe we should give each of them a cow.

T H E C O N S T I T U T I O N

They keep talking about drafting a Constitution for Iraq. Why don't we just give them ours? It was written by a lot of really smart guys, it had worked for over 200 years, and we're not using it anymore.

T H E 1 0 C O M M A N D M E N T S

The real reason that we can't have the Ten Commandments posted in a courthouse is this:
You cannot post 'Thou Shalt Not Steal,' 'Thou Shalt Not Commit Adultery,' and 'Thou Shall Not Lie' in a building full of lawyers, judges and politicians...It creates a hostile work environment.

President Bush on the Hunt for Osama Ben Laden

I find this hard to believe that Bush would really care what happens to Osama - this is more a liberal tact to throw up a smoke screen of deception as they seek to retreat from the conflict.

I believe Bush has other reason for crossing the boarder into Pakistan and that is to attack large concentrations of Al Qaeda terrorists that use this area for protection. If Ben Laden is really there and we kill him, all the better. But I believe we are working with the Pakistan to kill insurgents and terrorist of all kinds that the Pakistanis aren't capable of killing themselves.

The protesting of air strikes is a great cover for all concerned. It's a win/win situation for all. Pakistan can protest while US and British forces kill the enemy.

(London Times)
President George W Bush has enlisted British special forces in a final attempt to capture Osama Bin Laden before he leaves the White House.

Defence and intelligence sources in Washington and London confirmed that a renewed hunt was on for the leader of the September 11 attacks. “If he [Bush] can say he has killed Saddam Hussein and captured Bin Laden, he can claim to have left the world a safer place,” said a US intelligence source.

Bush arrives in Britain today on the final leg of his eight-day farewell tour of Europe. He will have tea with the Queen and dinner with Gordon Brown and his wife Sarah before holding a private meeting with Brown at No 10 tomorrow and flying on to Northern Ireland.

The Special Boat Service (SBS) and the Special Reconnaissance Regiment have been taking part in the US-led operations to capture Bin Laden in the wild frontier region of northern Pakistan. It is the first time they have operated across the Afghan border on a regular basis.
Related Links

The hunt was “completely sanctioned” by the Pakistani government, according to a UK special forces source. It involves the use of Predator and Reaper unmanned aerial vehicles fitted with Hellfire missiles that can be used to take out specific terrorist targets.

One US intelligence source compared the “growing number of clandestine reconnaissance missions” inside Pakistan with those conducted in Laos and Cambodia at the height of the Vietnam war.

America rarely acknowledges the use of Predator and Reaper drones, but the most recent known strike was on a suspected Al-Qaeda safe house in the Pakistani province of North Waziristan earlier in June. Villagers said the house was empty.

Intelligence on the whereabouts of Bin Laden is sketchy, but some analysts believe he is in the Bajaur tribal zone in northwest Pakistan. He has evaded capture for nearly seven years. “Bush is swinging for the fences in the hope of scoring a home run,” said an intelligence source, using a baseball metaphor.

A Pentagon source said US forces were rolling up Al-Qaeda’s network in Pakistan in the hope of pushing Bin Laden towards the Afghan border, where the US military and bombers with guided missiles were lying in wait. “They are prepping for a major battle,” he said.
The main operations in Pakistan are being undertaken by Delta, the US army special operations unit, and the British SBS.

Special forces are being sent to capture or kill Al-Qaeda and Taliban fighters based on intelligence provided by the Special Reconnaissance Regiment and its US counterpart, the Security Co-ordination Detachment.

The step-up in military activity has increased tensions between Pakistan and the US. A senior Pakistani government source said President Pervez Musharraf had given tacit support to Predator attacks on Al-Qaeda.

Robert Gates, the US defence secretary, said last week that the US would “partner [the Pakistanis] to the extent they want us to” to combat insurgents.

Pakistan lodged a strong diplomatic protest last week over what it claimed was an airstrike on a border post with Afghanistan that killed 11 of its troops.

The United States declined to accept this version of events. “It is still not exactly clear what happened,” said Stephen Hadley, the national security adviser.

Good Schools Produce Good Students : Vouchers Work

This isn't rocket science - it has been proven over and over that environment means everything to education. The District of Columbia school system is a total failure but the NEA, National Education Association, refuses to recognize this fact as it would put the entire union at risk.

The result is a self-fulfilling prophecy - continue to support the bad schools rather than fix the problem just to maintain union power to just watch the entire system collapse, or admit things have gone the wrong way and fix the problems. Of course this would take a lot of soul searching on the part of the union given they have never had to admit they have a problem with their entire system, nation wide.

The Heritage Fountdation has some great videos here that high lite the results of school choice. Keep the faith and watch the battle in action.

Voices of school choice

Long a discredit to our nation’s capital and its students, education in the District of Columbia has seen its fortunes rise in the past several years. Among the many bright spots has been an innovative scholarship program to help low-income parents send their children to the private school of their choice.


Thanks to this reform, parents have been able to send their children to better schools instead of the decrepit city public schools. Today, 1,900 low-income students participate in the voucher program.

But Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, the city’s non-voting representative in Congress, wants to derail this successful program.


“Now that Ms. Norton has made her intentions loud and clear,” argues Jennifer Marshall, director of domestic policy at The Heritage Foundation, “it’s only fair that the voices of children and families in the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program be heard for themselves.”

Parents and children alike believe this scholarship program is critical for the nation’s capital. Thanks to the efforts of parent organizer Virginia Walden Ford, they have spoken out on the issue in videos posted to Voices of School Choice.


“When I was in the public school, there wasn’t a lot of actual learning going on,” student Carlos Battle says in one poignant video.

Carlos’ mother, Pamela Battle, explains why the program works in another video. “When you give a child a different environment, a different opportunity, they act different. They want more for themselves when they can see that it’s a possibility they can get more. My kids are talking about going to college.”

Friday, June 20, 2008

Barack Obama's Foreign Policy Experience - Frightening

Barack Obama's lack of experience on all issues of the day is frightening to be sure, but his lack of experience has really "come home to roost" on foreign policy.

As Ralph Peters points out here he needs to tell us just what and how he will determine his new direction of American foreign policy. So far he has given us nothing of substance and the Marxist media is giving him a free pass. But what's new here.

We as citizens of this great country must have more information on just who this man is so we can make informed decisions. Our lives depend on it.

Keep the faith, the battle is just beginning.

OBAMA VS. OSAMA foreign frightening

By RALPH PETERS June 19, 2008

NAME-BRAND journalists have let Barack Obama make any claim he chooses about Iraq, Afghanistan or coping with terrorism without pinning him down for details. Yet many of his comments and positions seem stunningly naive about national security.

Given that this man may become our next president, shouldn't he explain /how/ he'd do the many impressive things he's promised?

This week, Obama claimed, again, that he'd promptly capture Osama bin Laden. OK, tell me how: Specifically, which concrete measures would he take that haven't been taken? How would he force our intelligence agencies to locate bin Laden? And he can't just respond, "That's classified. "He also claimed that fighting terrorism is a law-enforcement problem, not a military one (should we send the NYPD to Mosul and Kandahar?), and that the answer to terrorism is the approach taken after the 1993 World Trade Center attack, featuring conventional trials and prison terms.

That flaccid post-'93 response only encouraged terrorists - who are unfazed by the prospect of a US prison, where the quality of life's better than it was at home.

The Clinton administration's hesitancy and softness gave us the subsequent attacks on the Khobar Towers housing complex in Saudi Arabia, on our embassies in East Africa, on the USS Cole and, ultimately, the events of 9/11.

The senator needs to tell us why it would be different now.

Obama has also said he'd send our troops into Pakistan, although he'll withdraw rapidly from Iraq. His unwillingness to discuss the consequences of a hasty retreat from Baghdad is one thing - but invading Pakistan would be an order of magnitude worse. A substantial number of Iraq's 26 million citizens did welcome us. In Pakistan, with its 170 million Muslims and some of the most rugged terrain on earth, anti-Americanism prevails.

Any US military incursion would be greeted with outrage and demands for a military response. Nor does Obama appear to grasp that armies need fuel, ammunition, food, spare parts and other supplies. Nearly everything for our troops in landlocked Afghanistan, from bottled water to medical supplies, now comes via Pakistani ports, roads and railroads. If those long, difficult routes were cut, how would President Obama supply our troops? And no, it can't all be done by air.

Oh, Pakistan has nukes, too. Also this week, Obama's advisers stated that, if apprehended, Osama bin Laden should be tried in a conventional US courtroom.

My fellow Americans, do you believe that? Do you believe that this arch-terrorist, publicly proud of his responsibility for 9/11, should be given all the rights of a US citizen and a public platform to engage in propaganda?

What the full-rights-for-terrorists advocates fail to comprehend is that our judicial processes - so dear to us - are viewed by terrorists as a means to advance their cause, to embarrass us, to reveal our intelligence methods and to perpetuate their martyr myth.

Harsh as it may sound, a dead terrorist is dead, but an imprisoned terrorist is a cause (and not just for his fellow radicals). Abu Musab al-Zarqawi is forgotten, but our Guantanamo prisoners are pop stars.

Obama appears out of his depth on all this, but the gushingly friendly media have given him a pass on every groundless claim or gaffe. It's time for journalists to start asking him tough questions - to press him when he doesn't give serious answers. Isn't that their job?

Those who knew Obama in his university days claim that he couldn't be persuaded to study history. It shows. And his lifelong lack of interest in the military is self-evident.The response that "he has knowledgeable advisers" isn't enough.

Obama's military and counterterror "experts" compose a unique collection of the dismissed, the discredited and the dysfunctional. Most appear to be out to settle personal grudges rather than to advance our nation's security.

Let's hope that just one high-profile journalist pushes Obama on the following questions:*

*How would /you/ find Osama bin Laden?
*What, /specifically/, would you do differently?*
*What would be the rules for capturing or killing Osama?*
*How would you manage the /consequences/ of the military incursion into Pakistan you've threatened? Are you willing to go to war with Pakistan?*
*What would be the /specific/ results of a swift troop withdrawal from Iraq?*
*Why would a judicial approach to defeating terrorists work this time when it failed to protect us in the past?*
*Do you truly believe that self-admitted terrorists, when captured, deserve the full legal privileges of US citizens?

If this highly talented candidate has glaring gaps in his understanding of the world, voters deserve to know. If his campaign promises have no substance, we deserve to know that, too.

I support John McCain for president, but I live by the values that guided me as an Army officer: I will support my commander in chief as chosen by the American people, no matter who he (or, one day, she) may be. But until the people make their choice, both candidates should be held to the same tough standards of truth in advertising.

Sen. Obama, tell us how.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Lower Gas Prices Equals Less Government Intervention

What we are seeing today is people finally starting to question the old agenda that was proposed, passed and stuffed down our collective throats was government intervention into our economy and free markets for political gain. Sometimes the wake up call can only be learned and understood when it hits us personally and in the wallet.

I still believe there are a lot of people that believe government is the solution to all problems and it scares the hell out of me - even in the face of our elected leaders believing revenge is a solution to high gas prices. This is a fact - I can't remember which senator it was, I think it was Chuck Schumer that remarked, after their proposal to hit the oil companies with a profit tax failed, that the people just don't understand the problem. They were truly perplexed. Our elected leaders. Are you scared yet?

Now that President Bush has finally gone public with his demand that congress get off their butts and release the government lands and off-shore for drilling and exploration, we should see some movement in oil prices. He also talked about nuclear energy and more refineries.
Still congress has to act to make it happen. Bush has been after them to do this for years but just now he has gone public with the demand.

Some good news - a company that had proposed 7 new ethanol plants has cancelled due to the price of corn is over $7 a bushel.

I believe we are on the right track now but I'm afraid results will be slow - but keep the faith anyway, we now see how the battle is joined.

Why does gas cost so much?

The average price of gasoline nationwide has crossed $4 per gallon, according to news reports. The cheapest fuel can be found in Missouri, where it costs $3.80 a gallon, while Californians fork over nearly $4.50 at the pump.

How did this happen?

“High oil prices are here to stay due to heightened political risks, irresponsible behavior by oil-producing governments and growing global demand outside U.S. control,” Heritage energy expert Ariel Cohen writes.

The wrong solution. So what do we do about high energy prices?
A recent proposal from liberals in Congress—blocked on Tuesday in the Senate—demonstrates the wrong approach.

Heritage’s Ben Lieberman argues that the legislation “repeats the mistakes of the past by adding constraints that will discourage domestic energy supplies.” For example, the proposal would empower Washington to:

Raise taxes on domestic oil production. When Congress adopted this policy in the 1970s, domestic production actually dropped, making us more dependent on imports and hardly helping prices at the pump.

Pick winners and losers among energy alternatives. This strategy of government direction of the economy has failed time and again in the past and rewards special interests at taxpayer expense.
Impose counterproductive “price-gouging” legislation. Like price controls, Lieberman explains, such laws “try to make high prices illegal,” keeping new supplies from reaching the market. Without more supply, prices remain high.

“Simply put,” Lieberman concludes, “the Consumer-First Energy Act is an anti-energy bill that will only add to already-high energy costs.”

The right solution

The correct solution to high energy prices would be to get government out of the way and allow for more energy production. Lieberman suggests, for example, that “we need fewer restrictions on domestic oil drilling. America remains the only oil-producing nation that has placed a substantial amount of its energy potential off-limits.” The ANWR oil fields in Alaska are estimated to contain oil “equivalent to 15 years of imports from Saudi Arabia.”

Cohen also has a few ideas:
Nations that consume gasoline can pressure oil producers to open more energy to production, for example by limiting the power of the OPEC cartel.

Energy firms can invest in new technologies that can promote efficiency and allow exploration of new energy sources.

The auto industry should “prepare for the likely transformation of automotive transportation when market forces will shift it to electric, hybrid, and plug-in hybrid cars.”

Heritage Foundation research has also pointed to expanded nuclear energy, a repeal of the misguided ethanol mandate and avoidance of harmful cap-and-tax global warming schemes as means to keep energy prices low.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

American Muslims Plan Attacks on US Troops

Little wonder we why this kind of terror goes almost unnoticed - the New Socialist media and congressional socialists are convinced this is a good way to bring America down. They support terror at home as a means to an end.

It is a main-stay of the New Socialist Progressive Party, liberal Democrats, agenda - destroy America so it can be rebuilt to meet the needs of the few at the expense of the many. Kill those that defend us but demand rights to unlimited freedoms - where is the justice in this - ?

I have to Keep the faith because I know the battle is joined.



America's Homegrown Troop Killers
By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY Posted Tuesday, June 17, 2008

War On Terror:* It's bad enough that Americans are bad-mouthing American troops fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq. But an alarming number of Muslim-Americans are plotting to kill them

It's a story you don't like to hear from the mainstream media: U.S. soldiers increasingly are the prime targets of terrorism, both at home and abroad. And those who want to do them harm include fellow citizens.

Thanks to the anti-war crowd, the trend may only worsen. The ACLU recently pressured the Pentagon to shut down a domestic counterterror unit set up after 9/11 to protect troops and bases.

Convicted last week by a federal jury in Toledo of plotting to attack U.S. soldiers in Iraq were three Ohio men, from left: Marwan El-Hindi, Wassim Mazloum and Mohammed Amawi. And a new congressional report finds that the U.S. government has no "coordinated strategy" to deal with grass-roots jihadists who more and more are meeting, training and conspiring to kill troops over the Internet.

In the most recent case, a federal jury last week convicted three Toledo, Ohio, Muslims of plotting to attack U.S. military personnel in Iraq and elsewhere.Mohammed Amawi, Marwan El-Hindi and Wassim Mazloum were learning to shoot guns and make explosives while raising money to fund their plans to wage jihad against U.S. troops.

Amawi and El-Hindi are U.S. citizens, and Mazloum immigrated to the U.S. legally from Lebanon. In addition, El-Hindi's two cousins from Chicago face trial next year for conspiring to kill American soldiers.The Toledo case is just the latest in a string of troop-killing plots by homegrown terrorists.•

Earlier this month, Muslim convert and al-Qaida trainee Christopher Paul, a U.S. citizen also from Ohio, pleaded guilty to planning to use bombs to blow up U.S. military bases overseas.• In March, Hassan Abu-Jihad, a Muslim convert and former U.S. sailor, was convicted on federal charges of sending classified information on naval ship movements to an al-Qaida Web site, and arranging to obtain weapons to attack U.S. military installations.•

Last year, six Muslim men, including a naturalized U.S. citizen from Jordan, were charged with plotting to attack troops stationed at Fort Dix in New Jersey.• In 2005, three black Muslim converts from Torrance, Calif., were jailed for planning to attack Army recruiting stations.• In 2003, a group of Virginia jihadists, some of whom were born in the U.S., were busted for training to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan.• Last week, a student in Tampa, Fla., pleaded guilty to terror charges after police found him and a co-defendant with pipe bombs near a South Carolina naval brig holding enemy combatants. His plea deal says he produced terror videos "to be used against those who fight for the United States."

Homegrown American jihadists are waging a battle against U.S. troops right here at home — not in Anbar province or Kandahar — but right here, in Torrance, Toledo and Tampa.The Pentagon ought to make force protection a priority over the privacy concerns of the ACLU crowd, who by turning the military into the enemy has put the lives of troops at risk on American soil. It shouldn't apologize for monitoring Islamists who pose a threat to facilities.

Humor Heals the Soul

DIFFERENT WAYS OF LOOKING AT THINGS (or the uncertainty of the English language)

Two guys were discussing popular family trends on sex, marriage, and values. Stu said, 'I didn't sleep with my wife before we got married, Did you?' Leroy replied, 'I'm not sure. What was her maiden name?'
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A little boy went up to his father and asked: 'Dad, where did my intelligence come from?'The father replied. 'Well son, you must have got it from your mother, 'cause I still have mine.'
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'Mr. Clark, I have reviewed this case very carefully,' the divorce Court Judge said, 'And I've decided to give your wife $775 a week,'' That's very fair, your honor,' the husband said. 'And every now and then I'll try to send her a few bucks myself.'
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A doctor examining a woman who had been rushed to the Emergency Room, took the husband aside, and said, 'I don't like the looks of your wife at all.'' Me neither doc,' said the husband. 'But she's a great cook and really good with the kids'.
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An old man goes to the Wizard to ask him if he can remove a curse he has been living with for the last 40 years. The Wizard says, 'Maybe, but you will have to tell me the exact words that were used to put the curse on you'. The old man says without hesitation, 'I now pronounce you man and wife.'
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A blonde calls Delta Airlines and asks, 'Can you tell me how long it'll take to fly from San Francisco to New York City ?' The agent replies, 'Just a minute.'' Thank you,' the blonde says, and hangs up.
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Two Mexican detectives were investigating the murder of Juan Gonzalez. 'How was he killed?' asked one detective. 'With a golf gun,' the other detective replied. 'A golf gun?!What is a golf gun?' 'I don't know but it sure made a hole in Juan.'
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A man is recovering from surgery when the Surgical Nurse appears and asks him how he is feeling. 'I'm OK but I didn't like the four-letter-word the doctor used in surgery,' he answered.'What did he say,' asked the nurse. 'OOPS'
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While shopping for vacation clothes, my husband and I passed a display of bathing suits. It had been at least ten years and twenty pounds since I had even considered buying a bathing suit, so sought my husband's advice. 'What do you think?' I asked. 'Should I get a bikini or an all-in-one? ''Better get a bikini,' he replied. 'You'd never get it all in one.'

He's still in intensive care!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

In November - Vote for Survival

We in America, and most other free countries today, have the privilege of voting for our elected officials. Given this is the best that we can do to decide who will lead us into the future, even if the candidate is not who we want, we still must make the decision as to who will do the best job for the country.

Thomas Sowell lays out what is at stake if we make the wrong choice.

I have never sat out an election as I believe every election is the most important in my life time - if I don't vote then I can't complain about who gets elected or didn't get elected. On the other hand, if I did vote and the wrong person gets into the White House or seat in congress, at least I will have the knowledge I tried to do the right thing but it didn't work out the way I wanted it to. That might not be the best philosophy but it's one that I can live with. Having had the chance to make the decision and not taken it is something that would be hard to carry into the future.

Sitting home in November is not an option to be sure, just as it wasn't the answer in all of the past years. This year, though, our very survival may depend on how we vote. We can not take the back seat and hope the driver will get to our destination safely - we have to take the wheel in our own hands to control our own destiny. Dramatic? Sure - life has always been a series of dramatic consequences to our personal decisions. 2008 will be no different except now the whole country is at stake.

So collect your thoughts and weight the consequences of your decisions this year . Keeping the faith in the American dream of freedom and Democracy has never been more important for you and future generations. Now you know the battle is joined.


*Obama and McCain *
By Thomas Sowell* http://www.jewishworldreview.com/ *

Now that the two parties have finally selected their presidential candidates, it is time for a sober— if not grim— assessment of where we are. Not since 1972 have we been presented with two such painfully inadequate candidates. When election day came that year, I could not bring myself to vote for either George McGovern or Richard Nixon. I stayed home.This year, none of us has that luxury.

While all sorts of gushing is going on in the media, and posturing is going on in politics, the biggest national sponsor of terrorism in the world— Iran— is moving step by step toward building a nuclear bomb.The point when they get that bomb will be the point of no return.

Iran's nuclear bomb will be the terrorists' nuclear bomb— and they can make 9/11 look like child's play. All the options that are on the table right now will be swept off the table forever. Our choices will be to give in to whatever the terrorists demand— however outrageous those demands might be— or to risk seeing American cities start disappearing in radioactive mushroom clouds.

All the things we are preoccupied with today, from the price of gasoline to health care to global warming, will suddenly no longer matter. Just as the Nazis did not find it enough to simply kill people in their concentration camps, but had to humiliate and dehumanize them first, so we can expect terrorists with nuclear weapons to both humiliate us and force us to humiliate ourselves, before they finally start killing us.

They have already telegraphed their punches with their sadistic beheadings of innocent civilians, and with the popularity of videotapes of those beheadings in the Middle East. They have already telegraphed their intention to dictate to us with such things as Osama bin Laden's threats to target those places in America that did not vote the way he prescribed in the 2004 elections. He could not back up those threats then but he may be able to in a very few years.

The terrorists have given us as clear a picture of what they are all about as Adolf Hitler and the Nazis did during the 1930s— and our "leaders" and intelligentsia have ignored the warning signs as resolutely as the "leaders" and intelligentsia of the 1930s downplayed the dangers of Hitler.We are much like people drifting down the Niagara River, oblivious to the waterfalls up ahead. Once we go over those falls, we cannot come back up again.

What does this have to do with today's presidential candidates? It has everything to do with them. One of these candidates will determine what we are going to do to stop Iran from going nuclear— or whether we are going to do anything other than talk, as Western leaders talked in the 1930s.There is one big difference between now and the 1930s.

Although the West's lack of military preparedness and its political irresolution led to three solid years of devastating losses to Nazi Germany and imperial Japan, nevertheless when all the West's industrial and military forces were finally mobilized, the democracies were able to turn the tide and win decisively. But you cannot lose a nuclear war for three years and then come back. You cannot even sustain the will to resist for three years when you are first broken down morally by threats and then devastated by nuclear bombs.

Our one window of opportunity to prevent this will occur within the term of whoever becomes President of the United States next January. At a time like this, we do not have the luxury of waiting for our ideal candidate or of indulging our emotions by voting for some third party candidate to show our displeasure— at the cost of putting someone in the White House who is not up to the job.

Senator John McCain has been criticized in this column many times. But, when all is said and done, Senator McCain has not spent decades aiding and abetting people who hate America. On the contrary, he has paid a huge price for resisting our enemies, even when they held him prisoner and tortured him. The choice between him and Barack Obama should be a no-brainer.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Electrical Power Demand Causing Crisis in Supply

What do you think it will take for our congressional leaders to wake up to the reality of 'supply and demand"? It is beyond my comprehension why this is so hard for most people to understand. Worse, why our elected representatives refuse to acknowledge the very existence of the free market and the demands of a dynamic economy.

When our senators brought the oil executives up to Washington to grill them on excessive profits and then tried to get a bill passed to take most of their profits just for revenge, I found their hypocrisy in keeping with their own money grabbing history.

Of course it failed but yet several senators went public crying that conservatives stood in the way of bringing justice to these greedy oil executives and the will of the people that wanted to punish the oil companies. The last part here is only in minds of the senators, not really the will of the people. But wait - what part of this scenario, demanding justice from the oil companies, dealt with fixing the problem? The Marxist socialist in the senate don't care about the problem!! It's all about the agenda of control causing the crisis.

The truth be known, the people, a large majority by the way, want more oil - "drill now -drill here - lower gas prices". Also the truth be known, the senate doesn't give one spit about the truth or the people and never has.

This article is just another warning as to what lies ahead in the very near future for our electrical generation demands and what we are doing about it. As the article points out, we are actually not just doing nothing to help the situation, we are doing everything we can to make the situation worse. When will the people wake up and say enough of this nonsense. Get real! Read on -

Keep the faith though, you know now the battle is joined.


*Brownout*
Mark P. Mills 06.30.08 Forbes Magazine.

What happens when you don't build more power plants? Get ready for spiking electricity rates, brownouts and even blackouts as demand soars

If you think runaway oil prices are upsetting, just wait for what's in store for electricity. Similar forces are in play. Demand is rising fast; supply is not. The cost to get coal and natural gas out of the ground is going up, and to that expense must be added the cost of the carbon permits that Congress and the presidential candidates are contemplating.

Environmentalists are getting power plants scotched. China is sucking up energy. Leave such dynamics in play long enough, and price spikes in electricity follow. But that's just the beginning. We may be facing brownouts (voltage reductions) and even rolling blackouts.

By as early as next year our demand for electricity will exceed reliable supply in New England, Texas and the West and, by 2011, in New York and the mid-Atlantic region. A failure of a power plant, or a summer-afternoon surge in the load, could make for a blackout or brownout. "There really isn't any excess in the system," says Rick P. Sergel, chief executive at the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC).

Price shocks are already occurring. In May, long before peak summer demand, the wholesale price of juice jumped twofold in Texas, to $4 per kilowatt-hour, 25 times the average retail rate in the country. Prices exceeded the allowed rate of $2 for seven days and threatened the viability of power resellers who contracted to deliver cheap rates to consumers.

New Yorkers may suffer a summer of price discontent if regulators are right about peak wholesale prices jumping by up to 90%. In the past few years, in dozens of utility regions such as Georgia, Louisiana and Ohio, price hikes have ranged from 20% to 80%. Overall, the cost of electricity, which declined (in real dollar terms) for the last two decades of the 20th century, has been relentlessly tracking up since 2001.

While oil gets the attention, America uses just 15% more of it today than when the first modern energy crisis hit in October 1973. But electricity use is up 115% since then, thanks to all those plasma screens, iPhones, computers and data centers. And all economic forecasts see substantial growth in demand for electricity--think just of the coming electric cars--yet lots of problems in meeting it.

Right now the nation has 760 gigawatts of power plants to meet current consumption, with another 154 in reserve capacity to maintain grid reliability. But in fact only 10 gigs is truly excess capacity. The other 144 is utterly essential to keep lights on when unexpected demand arises from heat waves, outages or maintenance downtime. That reserve will begin to shrink quickly.

NERC estimates that over the next decade 135 gigawatts of new capacity will be needed to meet the growth in consumption. But right now plants producing a total of 57 gigawatts are planned. Ninety percent of electric power is fueled by nonrenewable coal, natural gas or nuclear power. Renewable sources will not cover the growth in demand. While wind is gaining ground (and now supplies 1% of power), hydro's share (7%) is shrinking as dams are dismantled. Solar, at 0.01%, is an inconsequential contributor.

Coal generates half of America's electricity.

The U.S. is the world's second-largest producer. China is the largest, and used to be a net exporter. A year ago China became a net importer of coal. So U.S. coal exports are rising now, up 13% already this year. America has plenty of coal, but as exports grow its price will start tracking world coal prices. Those have more than doubled in the past year to $100 per short ton, and Merrill Lynch forecasts another near doubling by year-end.

Coal is cheap, but it has no friends. Anticoal activists brag that 59 coal-fired plants were canceled in 2007. Nearly 50 more in 29 states are being contested. Recall how the private equity buyers of Texas utility txu agreed last year to cancel eight power plants to defuse environmental opposition. It takes years to plan and at least six years to build a large power plant.

Also playing into this is the possibility of a carbon penalty. Whether taking the form of a visible tax or imposed through a cap-and-trade scheme, a $30-per-ton tax on carbon dioxide could propel a 60% to 150% rise in the cost of electricity, even without further price hikes in raw fuel, according to the Department of Energy.

Next, the favored hydrocarbon: natural gas, used for 20% of U.S. electricity. Natural gas prices seem on track to meet, and perhaps substantially exceed, previous peaks. The same problem here: Demand is up, but supply is not. Natural gas is largely a domestic fuel (as oil was decades ago). But U.S. production is falling because of environmental restrictions on exploration and tapped-out existing gas fields.The savior was supposed to be a plentiful supply of liquefied natural gas imported from abroad via tankers. Good luck.

Countries such as Japan and Korea are willing to pay 30% to 40% more than the U.S., so lng producers in Spain and India, for instance, are diverting shipments away from the U.S. David Ratcliffe, chief executive of the southeastern utility Southern Co., says he knows of times when a tanker loaded with lng was rerouted to a better-paying part of the world. Besides, relying on lng guarantees two things, neither good: more dependence on imported hydrocarbons and higher prices as the U.S. natural gas market gets tied to world prices. If we assume natural gas prices track oil's, gas will double from today's already high level

Nukes produce 20% of U.S. electricity. But there hasn't been a new nuclear plant started in three decades, and licenses are expiring on existing nukes. Opponents are fighting renewal of those licenses. So how will this scenario play out if more plants don't get built? The first thing is that utilities will burn more natural gas. There is excess capacity now in gas-fired electric generators, currently used for peak loads and for filling in gaps during maintenance and plant breakdowns. (Electricity has an unresolved, annoying feature--it cannot be stored in any useful quantities, and must be produced the instant it's needed.)

But that margin of safety will disappear in only a few years, according to NERC. Electric rates, especially at peak times, will then soar--as much as tenfold. After that, we may see forced conservation, meaning voluntary or involuntary rationing, or even blackouts in rotation among business and residential customers. Utilities could give consumers the choice of staying cool by paying a lot more for the privilege.

Recall the summers of electric discontent for California in 2000 and 2001? Wholesale electricity prices skyrocketed, reflecting tight supply conditions (conditions that were exploited, but not created, by traders at Enron). The consequences were a bankruptcy filing by the state's biggest utility, Pacific Gas & Electric Co., and the early departure of a governor.

Multiply by dozens of states. Add in brownouts. Buy candles.

/Mark P. Mills is a founding partner in Digital Power Capital, an energy tech venture fund, and writes the Energy Intelligence column for Forbes.com.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Coming Together on Politics

Author unknown but still good insight into how we will all come together and be one big happy family -

There are less than seven months until the election, an election that will decide the next President of the United States. The person elected will be the president of all Americans, not just the Democrats and Republicans.

To show our solidarity as Americans, let's all get together and show each other our support for the candidate of our choice. It's time that we all came together, Democrats and Republicans alike.

If you support the policies and character of John McCain, please drive with your headlights on during the day.

If you support Obama, please drive with your headlights off at night.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Arizona Sheriff Arpaio Demonstrates Real Justice

I believe everyone is tired of hearing how our criminal system is broken and how most of our elected leaders have thrown up their collective hands in frustration looking for a solution. It's like high gas prices, da, not enough gas to go around - who knew??

I suggest they look no further than Arizona. Joe Arpaio has the answer and it's not just theory. He has proven that it works. And he must be on to something because the ACLU, American Communist Liberal Unity, is down there trying to gum up the works.

I always wonder why, given how Joe Arpaio's operation works, the rest of the nation can't or won't take a page from his note book on correction operations and start their own system in the other 49 states. Just think how neat this would work in Wisconsin, Minnesota or Alaska in the winter living in a tent. Do you think a criminal would want to come back to such a cool situation, or even better, not commit a crime at all in Wisconsin because of the living conditions that awaits them if they do?

But if reality is anything, it is harsh, because I don't see this happening anytime soon in Wisconsin - this will have to wait until the Marxist socialists have completely taken over and they will reserve such accommodations for all those that don't believe Marx has all the answers.

So here we go again, stay alert, watch your back and your mind open - now keep the faith as you know the battle is joined by such people as Joe Arpaio and yourself.



ARIZON SHERIFF STILL MAKING A DIFFERENCE

You all remember Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Arizona , who painted the jail cells pink and made the inmates wear pink prison garb.

Well......... SHERIFF JOE IS AT IT AGAIN!

Oh, there's MUCH more to know about Sheriff Joe! Maricopa County was spending approx. $18 million dollars a year on stray animals, like cats and dogs. Sheriff Joe offered to take the department over, and the County Supervisors said okay. The animal shelters are now all staffed and operated by prisoners. They feed and care for the strays. Every animal in his care is taken out and walked twice daily.

He now has prisoners who are experts in animal nutrition and behavior. They give great classes for anyone who'd like to adopt an animal. He has literally taken stray dogs off the street, given them to the care of prisoners, and had them place in dog shows. The best part? His budget for the entire department is now under $3 million.

Teresa and I adopted a Weimaraner from a Maricopa County shelter two years ago. He was neutered, and current on all shots, in great health, and even had a microchip inserted the day we got him. Cost us $78. The prisoners get the benefit of about $0.28 an hour for working, but most would work for free, just to be out of their cells for the day. Most of his budget is for utilities, building maintenance, etc. He pays the prisoners out of the fees collected for adopted animals. I have long wondered when the rest of the country would take a look at the way he runs the jail system, and copy some of his ideas.

He has a huge farm, donated to the county years ago, where inmates can work, and they grow most of their own fresh vegetables and food, doing all the work and harvesting by hand. He has a pretty good sized hog farm, which provides meat, and fertilizer. It fertilizes the Christmas tree nursery, where prisoners work, and you can buy a living Christmas tree for $6 - $8 for the Holidays, and plant it later. We have six trees in our yard from the Prison.

Yup, he was reelected last year with 83% of the vote.

Now he's in trouble with the ACLU again. He painted all his buses and vehicles with a mural, that has a special hotline phone number painted on it, where you can call and report suspected illegal aliens. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement wasn't doing enough in his eyes, so he had 40 deputies trained specifically for enforcing immigration laws, started up his hotl ine, and bought 4 new buses just for hauling folks back to the border.

He's kind of a 'Git-R Dun' kind of Sheriff.

TO THOSE OF YOU NOT FAMILIAR WITH JOE ARPAIO HE IS THE MARICOPA ARIZONA COUNTY SHERIFF AND HE KEEPS GETTING ELECTED OVER AND OVER and THIS IS ONE OF THE REASONS WHY:

Sheriff Joe Arpaio (In Arizona ) who created the ' Tent City Jail': He has jail meals down to 40 cents a serving and charges the inmates for them. He stopped smoking and porno magazines in the jails. Took away their weights and Cut off all but 'G' movies. He started chain gangs so the inmates could do free work on county and city projects.

Then He Started Chain Gangs For Women So He Wouldn't Get Sued For Discrimination.

He took a way cable TV Until he found out there was A Federal Court Order that Required Cable TV For Jails So He Hooked Up The Cable TV Again Only Let In The Disney Channel And The Weather Channel.

When asked why the weather channel He Replied, So They Will Know How Hot It's Gonna Be While They Are Working ON My Chain Gangs. He Cut Off Coffee Since It Has Zero Nutritional Value. When the inmates complain ed, he told them, 'This Isn't The Ritz/Carlton.....If You Don't Like It, Don't Come Back.'

He bought Newt Gingrich's lecture series on videotape that he pipes into the jails. When asked by a reporter if he had any lecture series by a Democrat, he replied that a democratic lecture series might explain why a lot of the inmates were in his jails in the first place.

More On The Arizona Sheriff:

With Temperatures Being Even Hotter Than Usual In Phoenix (116 Degrees Just Set A New Record), the Associated Press Reports: About 2,000 Inmates Living In A Barbed-Wire-Surrounded Tent Encampment At The Maricopa Co unty Jail Have Been Given Permission To Strip Down To Their Government-Issued Pink Boxer Shorts. On Wednesday, hundreds of men wearing boxers were either curled up on their bunk beds or chatted in the tents, which reached 138 Degrees Inside The Week Before. Many Were Also Swathed In Wet, Pink Towels As Sweat Collected On Their Chests And Dripped Down To Their PINK SOCKS. 'It Feels Like We Are In A Furnace,' Said James Zanzot, An Inmate Who Has Lived In The TENTS for 1 year. 'It's Inhumane.'

Joe Arpaio, the tough-guy sheriff who created the tent city and long ago started making his prisoners wear pink, and eat bologna sandwiches, is not one bit sympathetic. He said Wednesday that he told all of the inmates: 'It's 120 Degrees In Iraq And Our Soldiers Are Living In Tents Too, And They Have To Wear Full Battle Gear, But They Didn't Commit Any Crimes, So Shut Your Mouths!' Way To Go, Sheriff! Maybe if all prisons were like this one there would be a lot less crime and/or repeat offenders. Criminals should be punished for their crimes - not live in luxury until it's time for their parole, only to go out and commit another crime so they can get back in to live on taxpayers money and enjoy things taxpayers can't afford to have for themselves.

Sheriff Joe was just reelected Sheriff in Maricopa County , Arizona.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Barack Obama - Who are You? - Many Questions but Few Answers

This article by George Will is powerful stuff - questions about how he will lead America for the next four years need answers that voters must have to make a decision in November, but Barack can not answer these important questions without making him look like a Marxist socialist.

His history of decision making has proceeded him. He is on the record and his record provides us with information that we will use to determine Senator Obama's character and ability to govern.

I can not understand how Barack Obama has gotten this far in the political process without someone else pulling the strings that connect this man to people that lurk in the shadows. We must have the senator stand up and tell us who he is.

This article is a good start but by no means the end of the questions he needs to answer.

Keep the faith, George Will has joined the battle!


"Questions for Obama"
by George F. Will May 5, 2008 /Newsweek/

Senator, concerning the criteria by which you will nominate judges, you said: "We need somebody who's got the heart, the empathy, to recognize what it's like to be a young teenage mom. The empathy to understand what it's like to be poor, or African-American, or gay, or disabled, or old."

Such sensitivities might serve an admirable legislator, but what have they to do with judging? Should a judge side with whichever party in a controversy stirs his or her empathy? Is such personalization of the judicial function inimical to the rule of law?**?

Voting against the confirmation of Chief Justice John Roberts, you said: Deciding "truly difficult cases" should involve "one's deepest values, one's core concerns, one's broader perspectives on how the world works, and the depth and breadth of one's empathy." Is that not essentially how Chief Justice Roger Taney decided the Dred Scott case? Should other factors say, the language of the constitutional or statutory provision at issue matter?**?

You say, "The insurance companies, the drug companies, they're not going to give up their profits easily when it comes to health care." Why should they? Who will profit from making those industries unprofitable?

When pharmaceutical companies have given up their profits, who will fund pharmaceutical innovations, without which there will be much preventable suffering and death? What other industries should "give up their profits"?**?

Exxon Mobil's 2007 profit of $40.6 billion annoys you. Do you know that its profit, relative to its revenue, was smaller than Microsoft's and many other corporations'? And that reducing Exxon Mobil's profits will injure people who participate in mutual funds, index funds and pension funds that own 52 percent of the company?**?

You say John McCain is content to "watch [Americans'] home prices decline." So, government should prop up housing prices generally? How? Why? Were prices ideal before the bubble popped? How does a senator know ideal prices? Have you explained to young couples straining to buy their first house that declining prices are a misfortune?**? Telling young people "don't go into corporate **America ," your wife, Michelle, urged them to become social workers or others in "the helping industry," not "the money making industry." Given that the money makers pay for 100 percent of American jobs, in both public and private sectors, is it not helpful?**?

Michelle, who was born in 1964, says that most Americans' lives have "gotten progressively worse since I was a little girl." Since 1960, real per capita income has increased 143 percent, life expectancy has increased by seven years, infant mortality has declined 74 percent, deaths from heart disease have been halved, childhood leukemia has stopped being a death sentence, depression has become a treatable disease, air and water pollution have been drastically reduced, the number of women earning a bachelor's degree has more than doubled, the rate of homeownership has increased 10.2 percent, the size of the average American home has doubled, the percentage of homes with air conditioning has risen from 12 to 77, the portion of Americans who own shares of stock has quintupled.

Has your wife perhaps missed some pertinent developments in this country that she calls "just downright mean"?**? You favor raising the capital gains tax rate to "20 percent or 25 percent." You say this will not "distort" economic decision making. Your tax returns on your 2007 income of $4.2 million show that you and Michelle own few stocks. Are you sure you understand how investors make decisions?**? During the ABC debate, you acknowledged that when the capital gains rate was dropped first to 20 percent, then to 15 percent, government revenues from the tax increased and they declined in the 1980s when it was increased to 28 percent.

Nevertheless, you said you would consider raising the rate "for purposes of fairness." How does decreasing the government's financial resources and punishing investors promote fairness? Are you aware that 20 percent of taxpayers reporting capital gains in 2006 had incomes of less than $50,000?**?

You favor eliminating the cap on earnings subject to the 12.4 percent Social Security tax, which now covers only the first $102,000. A Chicago police officer married to a Chicago public-school teacher, each with 20 years on the job, have a household income of $147,501, so you would take another $5,642 from them. Are they undertaxed? Are they too rich?**?

This November, electorates in four states will vote on essentially this language: "The state shall not discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education or public contracting." Three states? **California , Washington and Michigan have enacted such language.

You made a radio ad opposing the Michigan initiative. Why? Are those states' voters racists?**? You denounce President Bush for arrogance toward other nations. Yet you vow to use a metaphorical "hammer" to force revisions of trade agreements unless certain weaker nations adjust their labor, environmental and other domestic policies to suit you.

Can you define cognitive dissonance?*