Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Four Financial Institutions Paid Clinton $2.1 Million

Citigroup paid Bill Clinton $700,000; Goldman Sachs paid $550,000; Lehman Brothers paid $300,000 and Merrill Lynch paid $175,000 to the former president for speeches during that time period. Sen. Clinton’s 2008 financial disclosure reports are not yet available.

I really have to wonder about these institutions that are taking bailout money or disappearing altogether, then sending their people off to party in other parts of the country, and those that pay out big bucks for speeches. If these companies didn't know that they were heading into financial problems, then I also have to wonder about the quality of management of these companies.

I have always thought that there was nothing wrong with a CEO getting a big bonus in his contract for leaving. Let me rephrase that. Nothing illegal. I can understand giving certain perks to have a certain CEO that you want to come and run your company. However, these CEO's should know the status of their company once they are in that position and they should know that paying out huge dollars just to have a guy speak is not affordable. If they didn't know that they were about to enter lean times, then the question becomes 'what was so enticing about this guy that we signed the guy with a big payout when he leaves'?

We all know that Bill Clinton is a political animal. So why was he invited to speak at financial institutions? This seems inappropriate at best. There really is no difference between a union spending union dues to endorse certain candidates than for a major financial institution to bring in political figures to speak. I cannot think of one thing that Bill Clinton could contribute to a financial institution. He's a former lawyer who lost his license. He's a former President who was impeached (one of only two in history).

What could Bill Clinton have contributed to financial institutions? I'm admittedly biased because I don't care for the former President at all. The only thing that I can think that he would contribute to them is advice on how to destroy the blue dress before you return home to the wife and kids.

Your comments are welcome.


Friday, November 21, 2008

The True Story of Thanksgiving

The following story is about Thanksgiving. You’ll notice it’s a bit different from what’s taught in the government school system, not that that should surprise anyone. The source for this story is Governor William Bradford himself.

On August 1, 1620, a ship called the Mayflower set sail for the New World. There were 102 passengers aboard of which 40 were the pilgrims. In November, they arrived in New England and found a barren and desolate wilderness. During that first winter, nearly half of them died, including Governor William Bradford’s wife.

When spring arrived, the Indians taught the settlers how to plant corn, fish, and skin beavers for coats. Life did get better for the pilgrims, but they didn’t prosper. In the fall of that year, they celebrated Thanksgiving, which for the Pilgrims meant a day of fasting and prayer, then the three days of feasting.

Edward Winslow gave this account of that Thanksgiving. "Our harvest being gotten in, our Governour sent foure men on fowling, that so we might after a more speciall manner rejoyce together, after we had gathered the fruit of our labours; they foure in one day killed as much fowle, as with a little helpe beside, served the Company almost a weeke, at which time amongst other Recreations, we exercised our Armes, many of the Indians coming amongst us, and amongst the rest their greatest King Massasoyt, with some nintie men, whom for three dayes we entertained and feasted, and they went out and killed dive Deere, which they brought to the Plantation and bestowed on our Governour, and upon the Captaine, and others. And although it be not alwayes so plentifull, as it was at this time with us, yet by the goodnesse of God, we are so farre from want, that we often wish you partakers of our plentie."

The original contract that they pilgrims agreed to with their merchant-sponsors in London called for all that they produced to be placed in a common store and each family was entitled to one common share of that store. The land they cleared and the houses they built all belonged to the community. There was no incentive to work their lands any more than their neighbors. There was no motivation to improve.

William Bradford, who had become the Governor decided to take action to improve the lives of the pilgrims. He assigned a plot of land to each family. What they produced on their land they were free to sell to others. They would no longer be expected to contribute to a community store for all to share. Governor Bradford wrote, “ The experience that was had in this common course and condition, tried sundry years…that by taking wealth, would make them happy and flourishing, as if they were wiser than God. For this community [so far as it was] was found to breed much confusion and discontent, and retard much employment that would have been to their benefit and comfort. For young men that were most able and fit for labor and service did repine that they should spend their time and strength to work for other men’s wives and children without any recompense…that was thought injustice.”

They found that people could not be expected to do their best work without incentive. So they turned loose the capitalism. Free enterprise. Bradford wrote,” This has very good success for it made all handsd industrious, so as much more corn was planted than otherwise would have been.”

In short order, the pilgrims had more food than they could eat themselves. So they set up trading posts and exchanged goods with the Indians. The profits allowed them to pay off their debts to the merchants in London and their success attracted more and more Europeans and began what came to be known as as the Great Puritan Migration.

It is sad that this is not taught in the government schools.

This Thanksgiving, I'll be giving Thanks for my children, for the chance to live in a free society where I am free to worship as I choose, and that I can hope and work for that free society to continue even in trying times which we are likely to be headed.

Sources for this: http://www.ncpa.org/oped/bartlett/nov2796.html http://www.latimes.com/features/kids/readingroom/la-et-story23-2008nov23,0,7094177.story, http://www.rushimbaugh.com/


Friday, November 14, 2008

What is Wrong with the Republicans?

There is a simple answer to the question of what is wrong with the Republicans. The answer is that they moved away from their conservative roots and tried to join the mainstream media and to get along with the Democrats.

Most of the people that read this blog already know this, but for you liberals and Democrats that have this read to you, here’s a little newsflash for you. John McCain is not Conservative. I don’t care how many times he claimed to be, he is not a Conservative. There is only one thing that saved him from being beaten into oblivion in this past election. Alaska Governor Sarah Palin. She is a Conservative.

When the head of a ticket is a Conservative, they don’t lose. Ronald Reagan won in two landslides. He also carried George H. W. Bush to the Presidency in 1987. President Bush, however, raised taxes (not a conservative thing to do). That caused a short recession. He lost his next election. He probably wouldn’t have lost had it not been for Ross Perot, but Perot wouldn’t have been a factor had Bush stuck to Conservatism.

Bob Dole was not Conservative. He was a moderate. He lost. George W. Bush ran as a Conservative and he won. That’s about when Conservatism went into hiding. In 1994 Republicans nationalized the election and ran on the Contract With America. They promised open debate and votes on ten items within their first 100 days. They won the majority on that promise. They followed through on their promise and voted on all ten in less than 100 days. Not all passed, but they held to their promise and had open debates and votes on all ten items. One was vetoed by President Clinton and they overrode his veto.

After George W. Bush was elected, the Republicans had the House, the Senate and the White House. That’s when Conservatism disappeared. There were a few, but for the most part, the Republicans started buddying up to the press (who hate them) and they started spending like Democrats. I will give them credit for one thing. They did do better than Democrats. Not only did they spend like Democrats, they spent better than Democrats.

The Republicans have an opportunity here. Now that the House, Senate and White House is all Democrat, we know they will do more to take away rights and impose taxes on the American people. However, they should be going after all with another nationalized election in 2010 and beyond. No more of keeping one or two Democrats around to remind us. We can win again and will win again, if we put forth Conservative ideas and promises and follow through on those promises.

First of all, the Republicans should not go on any political programs, such as the Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer, nor any of the repeated versions following that like Campbell Brown’s “all bull all the time” nor on Larry King, nor on Anderson Cooper. They also shouldn’t go on programs on Fox like Hannity and Colmes or Bill O’Reilly or any of the others they have on.

If a Republican is going to be on television, it should only be in the form of a press conference. Tell the press what they are looking at, what they plan to do, why the Democrats are wrong and then leave. The Press is not the friend of the Republicans.

The Republicans also need to start putting together their conservative principles into the form of an agenda for the next election. I believe they should start with these, although it’s not an entire list.

1. National Security: Protect our borders and invoke the Bush doctrine again. If you sponsor terrorism, you’re a terrorist. If you harbor terrorists, you’re a terrorist.
2. Free Market. No more bailouts. If a company fails, it fails. No more of the government buying stock in companies.
3. Illegal Immigration: If you are in this country illegally, leave. You have one year to leave on your own. You’re welcome to come back as long as you do it legally. We will put you on a list and welcome you back quickly if you’re legal. If we catch you here illegally and you haven’t taken advantage of the one year chance to leave on your own, you will be deported and will not be allowed back.
4. Taxes: Debate the Fair tax and other tax plans to revamp the tax code. What we have is not working. People are not paying their fair share. I’m speaking mainly of the poor.
5. Cut spending: Line by line through the budget and eliminate the ones that aren’t working. This could take some time because there are a lot of things that are not working.
6. Social Security/Medicare: This needs to be fixed. It could be fixed with an implementation of the Fair Tax, but I still prefer privatization. Not the way the liberals describe privatization, but the truth and the facts.
7. Reduce the size of government: Eliminate the redundant and the dead weight.
8. Revamp the voter registration: There are simple ways to count the vote. Purge all voter registrations nationwide. Make the registration process uniform through each state.
9. End Earmarks.

I’m sure there are more things that I’m forgetting or not thinking of right at the moment that can be added to this list, and I’m open to hearing them from anyone.

Power is lent to the government by the people. In our day and age, it seems to me that the people are allowing the government to take the power away from the people and claim it as their own. We are a Republic, not a Democracy.

It’s time that the people got tough with our elected officials and told them what we want or that we’ll get rid of them. Conservatism is the only way for Americans to maintain the power to lend to the government. If the Republicans don't get back to being Conservate, we'll all be asking the government for our daily needs.

Your comments are welcome.


Monday, November 10, 2008

Next Step: The Transition

On January 20, 2009 President George W. Bush will watch as President Elect Barack Hussein Obama is sworn in as 44th President of the United States. Between now and then there will be a transition. Obama will have to be brought up to speed on National Security first as well as all other aspects of governing that goes beyond the partisan politics.

While I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall as Obama learned things he didn't know before regarding our National Security, it would be purely out of curiosity if a light would come on over his head when he learns about the very real threats facing our nation that he didn't deal with during the campaign.

So instead, I'm looking forward to a very smooth transition from the Bush Administration to the Obama Administration. I remember all too well the reports of the transition from Clinton to Bush. Items were taken by the Clintons from the White House that shouldn't have been. Carpets were torn. Walls were scuffed, and most childishly, the "W's" were removed from computer keyboards.

From all accounts that I've read and heard about thus far, President and Mrs. Bush have been extremely gracious to the Obama's and various departments are bending over backwards to help the Obama transition team have a smooth move. Not only is this classy, it's necessary for the country. Imagine if the Bush people were bitter and angry about the outcome of the election and left graffiti on the walls, or stole various items from the people's house. The new administration might have every road block thrown in front of them that's conceivable and taking their eyes off, even briefly, the safety of the borders and the American people.....oh wait. We don't have to imagine. Bush came in at a disadvantage with his transition process because of the election that lasted 35 days, then the petty vandalism committed by the Clinton Administration. Less than 8 months later, we were attacked by terrorists.

The new President deserves, by virtue of the election, to have every advantage and no hindrances placed before him. I'm all for kicking his butt around (not literally) when he proposes the silly policies and laws he wants enacted that will be bad for the country. However, the transition from one administration to another is not the time for partisanship. It IS the time for America to shine in it's transfer of one person for another to hold the highest office in the land.

I am worried that a President Obama will be the socialist he portrayed himself to be during the campaign and that he has the Congress all in agreement with him because they are all liberal. For now though, I'm happy to see that the Bush Administration is working hard and seems prepared for any attempts at attacks on the American people on American soil during the time of transition.

Finally, I hope that Obama learns from the Bush Administration on how to transition to the next administration. I'm hoping he gets to put it into practice in four years, but whenever it is, I do hope that Obama puts (to quote John McCain) Country First over his own ego, or disappointment when he leaves and the Republicans take back the White House, whether in four years or eight years.

President Bush may not be popular at this time, but he is a class act and showing how to make the transition without the bitterness of the past administration.

Your comments are welcome.


The Election: Interesting and Dangerous Times Ahead

I have been asked why I haven’t written anything about the recent election. There are several reasons. Some personal, such as very busy with work, and some repairs that were needed due to a summer storm but the main reason is that I didn’t want to be a reactionary or defeatist about the election and what it meant and what it means.

First, Barack Hussein Obama won the election. He is to be congratulated. He’s won the largest victory margin of any Democrat since Lyndon B. Johnson. Bill Clinton never reached 50% in his two elections. Jimmy Carter barely beat Gerald Ford in 1976. So this was a clear victory for Obama.

Republicans were generally wiped out across the country, but not with the same difference in spread as the Obama win over McCain. For instance, in my own district, Tim Walberg lost to Mark Schauer by a very small margin. I went to bed on election night with Walberg winning, but when I woke up in the morning, Schauer had won. It’s this way across the country, with a few exceptions. I give the credit for that to Obama. Had the election been similar to the Clinton elections, I believe that Republicans wouldn’t have lost as many seats. The margin would still have been close, but many would have been reversed with the Republicans maintaining their seats. You may feel differently, and that’s fine. It’s just my opinion that Obama brought the Democrats over the finish line with his wider than expected margin of victory.

Obama should have won this election handily. In that, I think he failed. John McCain is not a conservative. I’ve been saying this since the Michigan primary back in January. It still holds true. John McCain is a moderate. Remember, this is a man that was tempted to leave the Republican Party in 2000. He was also considering running as John Kerry’s Vice Presidential candidate in 2004. He’s been a co-sponsor on campaign finance reform (those limits proved successful, eh?), immigration reform and others. Remember McCain/Feingold? McCain/Kennedy? McCain/Lieberman?

It amazes me that the Republicans chose McCain as their candidate after his complete failure in immigration reform. He wanted amnesty and the people of this country rose up and defeated it. If the people hadn’t spoken by their own choice when writing, faxing and calling their elected officials in opposition to the immigration reform package, we’d be operating under a completely different system.

Does all of this mean that I voted for Obama? Absolutely not! The decision I made prior to the Republican National Convention was that I would hold my nose and vote for McCain because Obama would be (and now will be) worse for this country than McCain. But something changed. At the Convention, McCain chose Governor Sarah Palin as his running mate.

My vote then became a vote for Palin and McCain just happened to be on the ticket as well.

We’re in for some fun, as well as dangerous times for this country in the next four years, but one thing is certain. This will be an interesting four years.
Your comments are welcome.


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Governor Sarah Palin Cleared in Troopergate

An Independent counsel has cleared Governor and Republican Vice Presidential Candidate, Sarah Palin, of any and all ethics violations in the troopergate matter.

But then, we all knew she would be cleared.

I welcome your comments.