Friday, June 24, 2005

John Kerry Talks About Real Problems

John Kerry issued the following statement : Time for a Policy Wake-Up Call on China

"China presents America with a great opportunity and a great challenge, and what we do now is going to decide the future of our relationship. But on too many policies we're failing to act. From competitiveness to trade to currency to tax policy to foreign-held debt, the Administration is digging a hole and they have no plan to get America out of it.
"Today, we don't enforce trade laws with China, and as a result counterfeiting and piracy of American products is rampant. Our tax code rewards companies that locate in China instead of America. China is systematically manipulating its currency for competitive advantage. We're piling up federal debt, substantially funded by China, and due back with interest from our children.
"And while the Chinese plan and invest in communications, transportation, research, development, education and advanced manufacturing technologies, we have no plan. We're reducing funding in basic science, graduating fewer engineers and burdening our business with massive health care costs. It is a worrisome sign that Bill Gates has called our high schools 'obsolete. . . even when they're working exactly as designed.' It is equally worrisome that we're cutting investment in research and science - the same kind of research that gave us everything from the mammogram to the microchip and the Internet. There is no question that we need a massive realignment of our domestic priorities.
"Simply, there is no question that we need to immediately and fundamentally change the way we approach, negotiate with and do business with China."

Don't let them get your eye off the ball. They'll do everything they can to focus you on people or organizations. Stay with the issues, talk about policy. If they are going to drag you, make it kicking and screaming.


Here's an interesting tale of disaster.

Members of the House of Representatives approved legislation on Wednesday to quickly replace themselves if they are killed in a Sept. 11-type attack.The House voted 268-143 to retain the plan, which was attached to a spending bill likely to be sent to President Bush within several months.

The measure, dubbed the "Doomsday" bill, requires special elections within 49 days if more than 100 of the House's 435 members are killed. Currently it can take 75 days or more for some states to hold special elections to replace a member who dies in office. Rep. David Obey of Wisconsin, called the measure "an invitation to one man-rule and dictatorship" because at least seven weeks could elapse before the House would be reconstituted, leaving major decisions to the president.Republican Rep. Dana Rohrabacher of California said the legislation was "a plan that will lead to martial law at exactly the time when we need Congress functioning to represent the interests of the American people."

A variety of ideas have been floated for dealing with a catastrophic attack on the Capitol. They include a constitutional amendment authorizing Congress to enact laws on succession or allowing representatives to designate temporary replacement, when they are elected.

What if over half of both houses was creating a modern aristocracy as our forefathers rolled in their graves.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Coffee Table

What's on your mind? Let's talk.

Another Golden Oldie

Karl Rove. Smart guy but he needs some new ideas. These deals are getting quite predictable. Create your cartoon liberal, demonize...rinse and repeat. Anyone who disagrees is of questionable repute or somebody "out to get them". Quite paranoid for the leader of the free world wouldn't ya think? Ever heard of talking points? Ever see them? Here they are. This is the x-ray of their cartoon liberal.

Just miles of great comments on the blogs today. Good for point well made at DNC. Please note the former attacks people and groups. The latter attacks policy. Yes, I know it's a thin line but it's also distinguishable.
What happened to after 9/11 all Americans came together? Revisionist history? I recall George Bush having 95% support after 9/11 and unanimous votes in congress to go get Osama in Afganistan. This is the way they connect Iraq and 9/11 without actually saying they are. If you want to believe that Republicans are John Wayne and Democrats are Richard Simmons go right ahead. If you want to believe that half or more of this country wants to get our troops killed then go right ahead. Just don't try to convince me of your "reality-based' thinking.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Let's Run It Like A Business

That's always the talk. Let's see what's really happening.

Republicans joined longtime Democratic critics in Congress on Tuesday to berate the Pentagon for withholding information about the Halliburton Corporation's disputed billing under a $2.5 billion contract for Iraqi oil site repairs and fuel imports.
Saying the Pentagon is acting as if "it has something to hide," Representative Christopher Shays, Republican of Connecticut, said at a hearing that he would support issuing a subpoena to the Pentagon next week if the administration did not provide long-requested documents relating to the contract, which was awarded to Halliburton in early 2003 without competition.

And who makes the rules here, the corporations or the people.

The redactions violated the commitment to transparency and regretfully make it appear D.O.D. has something to hide," Mr. Shays told a panel of Defense Department officials at the hearing. He accused the Pentagon of "deferring completely to the contractor's absurdly expansive view of what constitutes proprietary information and must be shielded from view." ..............At the subcommittee hearing on Tuesday, Mr. Waxman said that in a recent private briefing, Pentagon officials had disclosed that Kellogg Brown & Root had been allowed to dictate the redactions. Pentagon officials said at the hearing that the department's general counsel had advised them that details of the audits, including alleged overcharges, could not be released without the contractor's permission. Independent experts on contracting have disputed that view.

Is this the best way to spend our dollars in the war on terror or the fight for freedom and democracy or whatever it is today?

The Chinese States Of America

What a fools game we are playing with these guys. Ship them all our jobs, outsource our wealth and then let them use our money to buy us. This is not good policy.

One of China's largest state-controlled oil companies made a $18.5 billion unsolicited bid Thursday for Unocal, signaling the first big takeover battle by a Chinese company for an American corporation. CNOOC's bid, which comes two months after Unocal agreed to be sold to Chevron, the American energy giant, for $16.4 billion, is expected to incite a potentially costly bidding war over the California-based Unocal, a large independent oil company. CNOOC said its offer represents a premium of about $1.5 billion over the value of Unocal's deal with Chevron after a $500 million breakup fee. This week, a consortium of investors led by the Haier Group, one of China's biggest companies, moved to acquire the Maytag Corporation, the American appliance maker, for about $1.3 billion, surpassing a bid from a group of American investors. Last month, Lenovo, China's largest computer maker, completed its $1.75 billion deal for I.B.M.'s personal computer business, creating the world's third-largest computer maker after Dell and Hewlett-Packard.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Should We?

If they want us to pull out should we?

Eighty two Iraqi lawmakers from across the political spectrum have pressed for the withdrawal of the US-led occupation troops from their country.The Shiite, Kurdish, Sunni Arab, Christian and communist legislators made the call in a letter sent by Falah Hassan Shanshal of the United Iraqi Alliance (UIA), the largest bloc in parliament, to speaker Hajem Al-Hassani, reported Agence France-Presse (AFP).“We have asked in several sessions for occupation troops to withdraw. Our request was ignored,” read the latter, made public on Sunday, June 19.

Ok, it's not a majority but it is at that viable 30% mark. Time to take off the training wheels.

Who's Burning The Flag?

Apparently I was one of just a few in the country that learned in high school about confusing the map and the territory.

"The symbol is NOT the thing symbolized," thunders Hayakawa. "The map is NOT the territory. The word is NOT the thing.

Darned reality based world anyway! I guess I got a "liberal" education. Must be some moonbat plot.

OK, seriously now. This is the flag of the United States. Is it the flag of U.S. 1952, U.S. 1972, U. S. 2005 ? Because all those U. S.'s are far different animals. So just what does it symbolize? Is it static or moving? If it is static how come all those U. S.'s are so different. If it is moving then the possibility exists that it at some point may not stand for what is good and noble.
Is it the U.S. of gay marriage? Of freedom of diverse cultures? Of "Christian" values? Of freedom of religion? Of generous people? Of imperialist thugs? A symbol is whatever you put into it. It doesn't mean the same thing to all people. One final note. I think you will find, if you investigate. Fascist= extreme nationalism / Liberal= individual freedom.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Experiments In Democracy

For those that believe in states rights, as I in large measure do, they believe in it partly because the states make ideal laboratories for policy. For example lets try this one: Crime. Highest crimes area:

Markham, Illinois (2405.7)
East St. Louis, Illinois (2030.0)
Washington Park, Illinois (1867.2)
Hammond, Louisiana (1689.7)
Ocean City, Maryland (1463.4)
Florida City, Florida (1433.5)
Lancaster, South Carolina (1316.5)
Emeryville, California (1314.7)
St. Louis, Missouri (1259.5)
Wildwood, New Jersey (1245.6)
Palatka, Florida (1237.0)
Atlanta, Georgia (1195.5)
Anniston, Alabama (1193.5)
Denham Springs, Louisiana (1160.6)
Atlantic City, New Jersey (1120.1)
Gallup, New Mexico (1111.6)
Fort Myers, Florida (1109.0)
South Tucson, Arizona (1100.0)
Lumberton, North Carolina (1095.1)
Salisbury, Maryland (1087.8)

Your winner and champion, Chicagoland/St Louis environs. Top states Florida, Louisiana and Joyzee. Not good examples.

Safest cities in relationship to crime.

Norwood, Pennsylvania (5.7)
Southport, New York (8.9)
Pell City, Alabama (9.4)
Plattekill, New York (10.1)
Rockport, Massachusetts (14.8)
Bedford, Massachusetts (17.6)
Harvard, Massachusetts (18.1)
Eliot, Maine (21.0)
Holliston, Massachusetts (25.3)
Easton, Connecticut (25.4)
Dunmore, Pennsylvania (25.5)
Duxbury, Massachusetts (27.0)
Medway, Massachusetts (27.5)
Old Tappan, New Jersey (28.5)
Ridgefield, Connecticut (29.0)
Southborough, Massachusetts (29.5)
North Reading, Massachusetts (30.2)
Northville, Michigan (30.7)
Franklin, Massachusetts (31.3)
Norfolk, Massachusetts (31.5)

Goodness Massachusetts, those darned most liberal of all liberals, seem to have a handle on this crime thing. Now one may wish to note that more wealthy areas seem to have less crime than poorer parts of the country. That would make it logical reasoning to make as many people as possible thrive. How do we do this? Let's start by rewarding work. There is no reason for the big wigs to make 3 to 5 hundred times what the people at the other end make. This is not socialism! This is populism. I understand the huge resposibilities of those at the top. There is a good argument for them getting the most. No argument for them getting unconscionable percentages. If you go to work and do your part to contribute to success. That's valuable. Whatever you do.

As Expected

Well, I knew this very thing would come up should this become an issue. Be aware of it now and don't let them get away with it! You would think people would learn and maybe even demand more creativity after a while. As with a standard smear on character there is always something questionable about the documentation. Not only the Killian Memos but Kerrys' medals et al. Here are more documents that say the the same thing. Obviously they are all fakes. Their "reasoning" is all starting to look like a bunch of Zell Millers famous spit balls.

How To Make Oil Prices Drop

Opec's growing oil wealth has not stemmed the problems of high unemployment in the Middle East and abject poverty plaguing members such as Nigeria. The cartel is also conscious of the downside of high prices: that their drag on global economic growth could prompt moves to alternative energy sources, eventually lowering demand for oil.

Apparently all those riches make it better...for a few. .....So you are telling me if you are able to reduce the demand the price will more likely go down? Makes perfect sense to me. Sounds like a fine national agenda to me. So who's big enough to stand up, explain it, and make it so. ...Calling Mr. Feingold, make me proud.

Bush Administration Ahead Of The Republican Curve...Really!

-- The House is telling the United Nations to reform or lose U.S. financial support, and signaling the White House to take a tougher stand. The messages came Friday as the House voted 221-184, with a mostly Republican majority, to withhold one half of assessed U.S. dues - now about $440 million a year - if the U.N. doesn't accomplish nearly four dozen steps to improve its accountability and root out corruption. Failure to comply would also result in U.S. refusal to support expanded and new peacekeeping missions. The Bush administration, while applauding the House for pressing for changes at the U.N., said the automatic withholding of payments could "detract from and undermine our efforts" to work with U.N. members to improve the organization.

You mean you think it's positive to be a working part of the organization based on diplomacy? And that it will never be any better if fighting is better than diplomacy? If that is what you're saying I find it a refreshing and all to rare bout of common sense! What are you guys up to! :)

Oh wait, you have the minions to deal with first. ....The House rejected, on a 216-190 vote, an alternative offered by Rep. Tom Lantos, D-Calif., (check his record, this guy is VERY liberal) that would have made similar demands for change but leave it to the secretary of state to decide whether to withhold up to 50 percent of payments.....That's more comprimise than I'm willing to give.

"Far from promoting justice and respect for international law, the United Nations has become one of the world's greatest apologists for tyranny and terror," said House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, R-Texas. "The U.N.'s corruption is so breathtaking in its scope as to be almost universal."

Thanks Mr. Bugman. I guess the only other possibility is for us free of corruption wildly respected country to show'em how to do it.......Can't you see how, by your actions, you are screwing up any possiblity of anybody biting on that one! ...oh, about that board in your eye.

Over two days of debate, speakers slammed the U.N. for what they said was its wasteful bureaucracy, its anti-America, anti-Israel biases, its seating of tyrannical governments on the U.N. Commission on Human Rights and scandals involving the sexual misconduct of peacekeepers and alleged corruption in the oil-for-food program for Iraq.

Hint guys: You'll be more respected when America is seen to live up to the rhetoric. Otherwise they just get the idea you are a hypocritical snob. With more honest respect maybe we could keep some of those despots off the commission. Especially if we aren't supporting some despots over others. Believe it or not, people on the outside looking in have a hard time taking you seriously when you do that.

Democrats, and their few Republican allies, said there was no dispute over the need for U.N. reform, but argued the Hyde approach was heavy-handed. " I can't believe that when our men and women are fighting in Iraq, that we would move forward with legislation like this when we need to draw countries together," said Rep. Christopher Shays, R-Conn., who cosponsored the Lantos alternative.

Yeah! Why do they hate our troops!

Big Brother Wants To Watch

For all the things for them to decide to change their mind and try something different! These guys could screw up a.....we'll you finish it.

The U.S. Department of Justice is quietly shopping around the explosive idea of requiring Internet service providers to retain records of their customers' online activities.
Data retention
rules could permit police to obtain records of e-mail chatter, Web browsing or chat-room activity months after Internet providers ordinarily would have deleted the logs--that is, if logs were ever kept in the first place. No U.S. law currently mandates that such logs be kept.
In theory, at least, data retention could permit successful criminal and terrorism prosecutions that otherwise would have failed because of insufficient evidence. But privacy worries and questions about the practicality of assembling massive databases of customer behavior have caused a similar proposal to stall in Europe and could engender stiff opposition domestically. ........One U.S. industry representative, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the Justice Department is interested in at least a two-month requirement. ........This represents an abrupt shift in the Justice Department's long-held position that data retention is unnecessary and imposes an unacceptable burden on Internet providers. In 2001, the Bush administration expressed "serious reservations about broad mandatory data retention regimes."

Wow! Pro business and keep government out of my personal life. Sounds a lot like traditional conservative theory to me. I could handle that. But the bastards changed their mind!

The current proposal appears to originate with the Justice Department's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, which enforces federal child pornography laws. But once mandated by law, the logs likely would be mined during terrorism, copyright infringement and even routine criminal investigations. (The Justice Department did not respond to a request for comment on Wednesday.)

In other words for whatever the hell they want. They'll just keep reminding you how much "safer" you are.

A 1996 federal law called the Electronic Communication Transactional Records Act regulates data preservation. It requires Internet providers to retain any "record" in their possession for 90 days "upon the request of a governmental entity."

Ahh, so they can already do it. Sooooo, this just automatically saves everything on everyone....just in case you know.

"Even if your concern is chasing after child pornographers, the packets don't come pre-labeled that way," Rotenberg said. "What effectively happens is that all ISP customers, when that data is presented to the government, become potential targets of subsequent investigations."

Like I said, just in case.

Even after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the Bush administration criticized that approach. In November 2001, Mark Richard from the Justice Department's criminal division said in a speech in Brussels, Belgium, that the U.S. method offers Internet providers the flexibility "to retain or destroy the records they generate based upon individual assessments of resources, architectural limitations, security and other business needs."

Business freedom and keeping the governments nose out of it. ..........wait, the liberals like it this time. They must be up to something. Maybe we should see what they're up to.

Alexander Alvaro on behalf of the Parliament's civil liberties and home affairs committee slammed the idea, ....Given the volume of data to be retained, particularly Internet data, it is unlikely that an appropriate analysis of the data will be at all possible. Individuals involved in organized crime and terrorism will easily find a way to prevent their data from being traced." He calculated that if an Internet provider were to retain all traffic data, the database would swell to a size of 20,000 to 40,000 terabytes--too large to search using existing technology.

So you're saying needle in a haystack and you'd just end up looking at a bunch of stuff that was irrelevant. Just "accidental" snooping. Yep, I have lots of confidence in that idea.
Real conservatives, this is a time I'm willing to bond with you in all sincerity. Stand up and be counted. You're not sheeple!