Archive for the ‘Featured’ Category

Directly from the CBO:

This morning the Obama Administration released a description of its health care proposal, and CBO has already received several requests to provide a cost estimate for that proposal. We had not previously received the proposal, and we have just begun the process of reviewing it—a process that will take some time, given the complexity of the issues involved. Although the proposal reflects many elements that were included in the health care bills passed by the House and the Senate last year, it modifies many of those elements and also includes new ones. Moreover, preparing a cost estimate requires very detailed specifications of numerous provisions, and the materials that were released this morning do not provide sufficient detail on all of the provisions. Therefore, CBO cannot provide a cost estimate for the proposal without additional detail, and, even if such detail were provided, analyzing the proposal would be a time-consuming process that could not be completed this week. (emphasis mine)

How long has the administration had to provide a concise and detailed plan to the CBO for budget analysis?  Much like this administrations vague whimsical ideology throughout the campaign season, we have a President who submits an incomplete health care proposal.. void of enough substance that it is impossible for the Congressional Budget Office to make a determination as to the actual cost of his plan.  Again, he morphs in to a blank slate.. people can read the plan and hope that it doesn’t, in the long term, push the United States in to further RED ink.  Who in their right mind makes a major purchase without understanding the cost involved in the decision? Mark my words, the administration will push this plan through, probably through reconciliation, without any consideration of cost or the wishes of the American people.

Lets take a journey back in time, since the administration wants to play shell games with the projected cost analysis.  Cost analysis, even with the best considerations are inherently unreliable and history backs this up.

In 1965, the House Ways and Means Committee estimated that the hospital insurance program of Medicare – the federal health care program for the elderly and disabled – would cost $9 billion by 1990. The actual cost that year was $67 billion.

In 1967, the House Ways and Means Committee said the entire Medicare program would cost $12 billion in 1990. The actual cost in 1990 was $98 billion.

In 1987, Congress projected that Medicaid – the joint federal-state health care program for the poor – would make special relief payments to hospitals of less than $1 billion in 1992. Actual cost: $17 billion.

Isn’t that disturbing?  It sure is to me, especially when the purposed health care insurance initiative regulates and controls 1/6 of the economy.

According to Rasmussen, 61% of the American voters believe that “Congress should scrap the current proposals and start over;”  given this high number it is not surprising that 59% of voters believe that the states should have the RIGHT to opt out of the federal government plan.  Currently 75% of voters are “angry at the government’s current policies.”

Again I ask, what sane and grounded individual makes a potentially life changing purchase without considering the actual cost of said purchase?  Sadly, I think only members of Congress when they can strip the money from not only your pocket, but that of future generations.

With the shenanigans going on in Washington, the “I’m just a blank slate for people to write a monologue on” President,  is this number surprising?

Islam/ Women/ Sharia Law

First the case…
ABC News:

Police in Arizona are hunting for an Iraqi-American father who they say ran over his daughter with his car to punish her for becoming “too Westernized” and rebuffing the conservative ways he valued.

Faleh Hassan Almaleki, 48, was last seen fleeing the parking lot of the Department of Economic Development in Peoria, Ariz., Tuesday after hitting his 20-year-old daughter and her boyfriend’s mother with his Jeep Grand Cherokee.

Noor Faleh Almaleki is in “life-threatening condition,” Peoria Police spokesman Mike Tellef told ABCNews.com today. Her boyfriend’s mother, 43-year-old Amal Edan Khalaf, is also still hospitalized, but with non-life threatening injuries. “It occured because her not following traditional family values. We’ve been told that by everybody,” Tellef said. “He felt she was becoming too westernized and he didn’t like that.”

Calls to the Almaleki family weren’t returned.

Noor Almaleki had backed out of an arranged marriage about a year ago, police learned, and had been living with Khalaf and her son in a nearby town.

The father then fled the country following the attack.  He first went to Mexico and then flew to London, where he was detained by British officials and extradited back to the United States.

Noor Faleh Almaleki passed away from the injuries she sustained in early November, may her soul now rest in peace. The charges against her father were then upgraded to first degree murder.

Now the case takes what can only be described as a cowardly insult to every American and especially to women.  Honor killings are primarily perpetrated against females and should be considered a religiously sanctioned female genocide or jihad.  The victims of these murders are guilty in the eyes of blood relatives in shaming the family.  While primarily found in Muslim countries, as Islam expands to other countries they bring with them the barbaric practice of Sharia law.  Honor killings place all imagined “guilt” on the female regardless of age, the woman or girl is raped.. she has shamed the family and killed.  The girl or woman speaks to a male outside of the family structure .. she has broken Islamic law and is murdered.  Often in Islamic countries these murders are unreported and the perpetrators unpunished because it is permissible for male family members to do as they wish to the females in their family.  Women are considered less than cattle, at least cattle are given value, these women are not.

Islam is evil toward women, make no mistake.  In November of 2008, two men attacked girls on their way to school in Afghanistan with water pistols filled with acid, which severely disfigured the girls.  Attacks like this are not uncommon in Islamic societies, and if you do not believe me .. I dare you to use google images and search for the words… acid  women   islam; you will be distrubed and shocked, but these are the faces of women under Islam. And this practice is spreading to the United States…

From USA Today November 2009:

“There is broad support and acceptance of this idea in Islam, and we’re going to see it more and more in the United States,” says Robert Spencer, who has trained FBI and military authorities on Islam and founded Jihad Watch, which monitors radical Islam.

clip and speaking on the murder of Noor Faleh Almaleki by her father….

“By his own admission, this was an intentional act, and the reason was that his daughter had brought shame on him and his family,” says Maricopa County prosecutor Stephanie Low, according to The Arizona Republic.

Yes instances like this will become more common yet in most instances they will remain under-reported because often honor killing in the United States and Europe are reported under the category of homicide or in cases where the victim survives as a domestic violence issue.  So the question becomes should these murders be treated different in our criminal justice system because they are Muslim?  Should they if convicted of the crime, should they be ineligible for the death penalty of a particular state so not to show “bias” against Muslims?  Well, from where I am sitting, this is what has happened in the case of Noor Faleh Almaleki.

Almaleki is charged with first-degree murder, aggravated assault and two counts of leaving the scene of a serious accident. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

The decision not to seek the death penalty comes after Almaleki’s attorney, Billy Little, a public defender, asked a judge to take special precautions to ensure the County Attorney’s Office wouldn’t wrongly seek the death penalty because Almaleki is a Muslim.

Little requested that the office make public the process it uses to determine whether to seek capital punishment.

“An open process provides some level of assurance that there is no appearance that a Christian is seeking to execute a Muslim for racial, political, religious or cultural beliefs,” Little wrote, referring to County Attorney Andrew Thomas’ Christian faith.

Laura Reckart, a county prosecutor, responded that Little’s concern about the “supposed bias” of the office’s death penalty review process was “without legitimate factual or legal basis.”

However, the debate stopped there. On Tuesday, Reckart filed a motion indicating prosecutors would not seek the death penalty.

Mike Scerbo, a spokesman for the County Attorney’s Office, issued the following statement Friday:

“The defendant is charged with first degree murder and, if convicted, will spend the rest of his life in prison. As is in all first degree murder cases, the decision on whether to seek the death penalty is made on a case by case basis. Cultural considerations played no part in the decision not to seek the death penalty.”

Prosecutors said Almaleki has admitted killing his daughter because she disgraced the family by not following traditional Iraqi or Muslim values.

And there we have it, the new get out of lethal injection card… be Muslim.  What about the life of Noor Faleh Almaleki, is her life worth less than any other women regardless of the religious beliefs of her father?  This was a crime fueled through the lens of an ideology which views women as mere objects and advocates physical harm should a female not abide by patriarchal rule.  Stating this obvious and factually correct aspect of Islam allows for increased awareness of the danger that women face in Islamic societies.

What I see is the public defender playing the PC card and the prosecutor’s office bailing out, afraid of the protests that would ensue.. cowardly afraid of prosecuting the death to the fullest extent of the law.

The adherence to misguided political correctness will be the downfall of this great country.  The Fort Hood shooter displayed many “red flags” over the last few years, yet the Army chose to ignore those because of how it might look as bias.  The PC police have extended their control by attempting to shame logical fact based arguments, which is manipulative and a method the left has used for years. Political Correctness is championed as a catalysis for awareness, yet it can also be used as a method of jihad against a free society.

So what do you think… have the PC police gone to far?

Indiana Sen. Evan Bayh will not seek re-election this November, an unexpected decision that hands Republicans an opportunity for a pick-up in a year when Democrats are already defending several open Senate seats.

The two-term senator is known as a moderate Democrat. Former GOP Sen. Dan Coats had been planning to challenge Bayh in November — but a senior Democratic source told Fox News that recent polling showed Bayh way ahead of Coats, and that the retirement must have been a personal decision.

Additional information from the Indy Star:

Sen. Evan Bayh will not run for re-election, a decision that will shock Democrats and Republicans alike in Indiana.

In prepared remarks, Bayh, 54, cited excessive partisanship that makes progress on public policy difficult to achieve as the motivation for his decision.

“After all these years, my passion for service to my fellow citizens is undiminished, but my desire to do so in Congress has waned,” he said.

“My decision was not motivated by political concern,” he added. “Even in the current challenging environment, I am confident in my prospects for re-election.”

“But running for the sake of winning an election, just to remain in public office, is not good enough,” Bayh said. “And it has never been what motivates me. At this time I simply believe I can best contribute to society in another way: creating jobs by helping grow a business, helping guide an institution of higher learning or helping run a worthy charitable endeavor.”

“Two weeks ago, the Senate voted down a bipartisan commission to deal with one of the greatest threats facing our nation: our exploding deficits and debt. The measure would have passed, but seven members who had endorsed the idea instead voted ‘no’ for short-term political reasons,” he said. “Just last week, a major piece of legislation to create jobs — the public’s top priority — fell apart amid complaints from both the left and right. All of this and much more has led me to believe that there are better ways to serve my fellow citizens, my beloved state4 and our nation than continued service in Congress.”

As typical of Bayh, he is speaking out both sides of his mouth.  He continually claims (via emails) to support fiscal responsibility of government yet votes in favor of the Senate health care bill.  Mind you he, along with every Senator who voted in favor of this legislation, knows that maneuvered payment to doctors and hospitals out of the bill; to give the appearance of budget neutrality.  It was and is a lie… once these payments are included this legislation sinks the deficit further in to an abyss of red ink.

The commission Bayh is referring to which failed in the Senate, in my view was correct.  If Senators do not have the courage to face, debate and vote on challenging or difficult legislation then they need to go.  The creation of this commission gave them the easy out, they could finger point to an appointed board and say, “they made us do it.”  Are  they statesmen or politicians?  If the later then here’s the door and good riddance.

While papers want to prop-up Dan Coats, Senator turned lobbyist as the threat against against Bayh.. most Hoosiers know that Coats is nothing but … a power play by Governor Mitch Daniels.  Coats lured out of posh lobbyist ties would remain faithful to the Indiana Republican party.  In fact I dare anyone to name major legislation Coats authored during his 11 years in the Senate?

My concern now is what direction Bayh will take during his remaining months?  Will he again vote in favor of some convoluted reconciled health care bill?  Although Hoosiers are formerly against everything that currently is being offered by Congress.  Will he support legislation surrounding cap and trade, which will hit a coal state like Indiana hard.

Hopefully a new day is dawning for the country, one where government shrinks and the freedom of the people moves back to the envisioned republic of our forefathers.

Related post:

Bayh’s Numbers Spell Trouble

Federal Payroll Scheduled to Hit 2.15 Million… Largest EVER

Posted by courage On February - 2 - 2010

Does this number surprise anyone?  Bureaucracy breeds top-heavy weasels who will be seen popping in and out of holes throughout the United States.  How do unions fit in this scenario?

New data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) show that a majority of American union members now work for the government. The pattern of unions adding members in government while losing members in the private sector accelerated during the recession. The typical union member now works in the Post Office, not on the assembly line.

Representing government employees has changed the union movement’s priorities: Unions now campaign for higher taxes on Americans to fund more government spending. Congress should resist government employee unions’ self-interested calls to raise taxes on workers in the private sector.

Is the sizable increase in federal workers a pay-back to unions who supported Obama?  First the government makes it their duty to assure you use the “correct” light bulbs in your home; next they attempt to mandate the minimum type of health insurance you must purchase, now we have a government which is gorging itself and increasing in size on the taxpayer’s dollar.

The era of big government has returned with a vengeance, in the form of the largest federal work force in modern history.

The Obama administration says the government will grow to 2.15 million employees this year, topping 2 million for the first time since President Clinton declared that “the era of big government is over” and joined forces with a Republican-led Congress in the 1990s to pare back the federal work force.

Most of the increases are on the civilian side, which will grow by 153,000 workers, to 1.43 million people, in fiscal 2010.

clip…

“I’m shocked that the ‘tea party’ hasn’t focused on it yet, and the Obama administration only has a thin sliver of time to deal more directly with it, I believe,” said Paul C. Light, who studies the federal bureaucracy as a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and a professor at New York University. “When you talk about big government, you’re talking about a big employer.”

The new figures are contained in the budget that Mr. Obama sent Monday to Congress.

Mr. Obama says the civilian work force will drop by 80,000 next year, mostly because of a reduction in U.S. census workers added in 2010 but then dropped in 2011 after the national population count is finished. That still leaves 1.35 million civilian federal employees on the payroll in 2011.

From 1981 through 2008, the civilian work force remained at about 1.1 million to 1.2 million, with a low of 1.07 million in 1986 and a high of more than 1.2 million in 1993 and in 2008. In 2009, the number jumped to 1.28 million.

Since Obama took office in 2009, the federal government added an average of 6,666.666.. employees each month.  Eerie?  You bet.  And how does this fit in with a USA Today article from early December.. you remember, the one that stated:

The number of federal workers earning six-figure salaries has exploded during the recession, according to a USA TODAY analysis of federal salary data.

Federal employees making salaries of $100,000 or more jumped from 14% to 19% of civil servants during the recession’s first 18 months — and that’s before overtime pay and bonuses are counted.

The free money wagon in Washington bureaucracy has exploded, while average people struggle to pay bills and find work, federal employees are living high on the hog supplied by your tax dollars.

Obama talks a good game about fiscal responsibility, heck some people probably believe the lies words which easily flow from his mouth when he makes announcements about cutting the deficit, about understanding the concern the American public feels with the run-away money train in Washington.  Behind the shiny veneer though is a charlatan, a carnival barker, quick to encourage confidence yet void of empathy to the shattered hopes who have placed faith and trust in him.  There is no doubt there is reason behind his madness, there is purpose, for the moment it is hidden behind illusion.  But as with all illusions, as with all scam artists, as with all those who seek to perpetrate deception on the American people.. the illusion will fade, the scam artist will be exposed and the American people will rise up and declare: This is the country of WE-THE-PEOPLE.

Self-proclaimed “Moderate” Senator Bayh Bamboozles Hoosiers

Posted by courage On January - 22 - 2010

With the vast number of letters I have sent Senator Bayh since the first of the year, we should be on a first name basis.  But this is not the case.  Continually letters are answered with generic form mail, barely addressing the questions this constituent poses.  Rest assured though he can send out mass emails which champion his quest for fiscal responsibility; yet he never makes the connection between this stated policy position and the alarming increase in government bureaucracy, as evidenced by his health care “yea’ vote .  When calling either his local or Washington office I have yet to reach a live person; a vast majority of these times the voice mail box was full.  With legislation that impacts each and ever Hoosier can’t the Senator’s staff even find time to clean out the voice mail?

Read the rest of this entry »

Pete Visclosky Town Hall Forums

Posted by courage On January - 17 - 2010

Over the past week, Courage and One Nerve Left attended 3 of the 24 local town hall forums sponsored by Representative Pete Visclosky.  Each of the forums was scripted in the same manner; submit cards with questions for the Congressman, while he shuffles through the questions,  a local high academic 8th grader gives the bio of the Congressman.

The next 45 minutes Visclosky took the floor touting the wonderful things has done for the area; he is in full campaign mode with far too many “I” statements.  When he did direct statements toward the state of the nation he was quick to blame previous administrations; namely Bush.  This was predictable, given that the current crop of Dems can not seem to find anything but virtuous intent in their own actions.  The remaining 40 minutes or so was used to read and answer the questions which were submitted.  Often his answers would flow in to expanded rhetoric which only vaguely answered the original question and left the audience unsure of the reasoning.  This point was evident with the numerous times individuals in the audience would say right before he moved on to the next question, “you didn’t answer the question.”   After the second of these forums, it was obvious that he would not debate the merits of his positions which frustrated the audience and us.

Being proactive sort of people, prior to the third event we hastily wrote up a sheet called “We-The-People Speak: Rebuttal to previous town forums held by Representative Visclosky” and handed then out at the door of the event.  The sheet was based on previous statements which either went unchallenged during the event because they were offered during the 45 minute “I’m a great guy” beginning segment or statements which were either ignored or rhetorically tossed aside.

Here’s our rebuttal: With some minor corrections for clarity and typos,

Read the rest of this entry »

Who with half a brain cell did not see this coming?  Even without a law degree, any American who has a fundamental understanding of our judicial system, our laws and th e Constitution expected, while hoping against,  this action by the court.  I find this a dark insidious stain which I fear will be played out in all civilian trials of Gitmo detainees. 

WASHINGTON (AP) – A federal judge has tossed out most of the government’s evidence against a terrorist detainee on grounds his confessions were coerced, allegedly by U.S. forces, before he became a prisoner at Guantanamo Bay.

In a ruling this week, U.S. District Judge Thomas Hogan also said the government failed to establish that 23 statements the detainee made to interrogators at Guantanamo Bay were untainted by the earlier coerced statements made while he was held under harsh conditions in Afghanistan.

Read the rest of this entry »

Constitution 101.. Patriots Time for School

Posted by courage On January - 5 - 2010

constitution-gavel

Over the long holiday weekend, I happened across a great learning tool for patriots.  I have heard many express the desire to learn more about the founding documents of this great country and to this end I offer the link to a FREE online Constitution class.  Each segment is approximately one hour long and is presented by the 2004 Libertarian Presidential Candidate, Michael Badnarik.

I am slowly making my way through the class segments.  At the start I sat with coffee, not long in to the first segment I stopped the presentation to gather up needed supplies, paper and pen.. the information I was learning was to important to just ignore.

Read the rest of this entry »