Monday, February 16, 2009

Reality Matters Not to Obama’s Agenda

The Wall Street Journal publishes an op-ed today, written by Barry Schiller, titled Obama’s Rhetoric Is the Real ‘Catastrophe,’ wherein Schiller notes that Obama is, and has been since the campaign, hard selling economic fear.

President Barack Obama has turned fearmongering into an art form. He has repeatedly raised the specter of another Great Depression. First, he did so to win votes in the November election. He has done so again recently to sway congressional votes for his stimulus package.

I’ve stated the same thing here.

Schiller then goes on in his piece and states the following historic data.

This fearmongering may be good politics, but it is bad history and bad economics. It is bad history because our current economic woes don’t come close to those of the 1930s. At worst, a comparison to the 1981-82 recession might be appropriate. Consider the job losses that Mr. Obama always cites. In the last year, the U.S. economy shed 3.4 million jobs. That’s a grim statistic for sure, but represents just 2.2% of the labor force. From November 1981 to October 1982, 2.4 million jobs were lost—fewer in number than today, but the labor force was smaller. So 1981-82 job losses totaled 2.2% of the labor force, the same as now.

Job losses in the Great Depression were of an entirely different magnitude. In 1930, the economy shed 4.8% of the labor force. In 1931, 6.5%. And then in 1932, another 7.1%. Jobs were being lost at double or triple the rate of 2008-09 or 1981-82.

This is not “good politics,” as Schiller states at the beginning of the above quote.  In fact it is high irresponsibility on the part of Obama, and displays Obama’s total lack of rational observation in his cocoon of ideology.

Posted by John Venlet on 02/16 at 07:54 AM
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Sunday, February 15, 2009

Submarines Collide

The Sun, headlines the story regarding the undewater collision of the Royal Navy’s HMS Vanguard and the French Navy’s Le Triomphant as Unthinkable.  Hardly.  I’ve experienced close proximity to other subs operating underwater, but they were not Brit or French, and no collisions ensued.

Fortunately, there were no casualties, well not physically, but careers will be cut short.

Naturally, there is handwringing over the fact that the submarines were nuclear powered and carry nuclear missiles, which in most cases is unwarranted, but not without merit, if facts actually warrant concern, and they do not in this case, at least based on the limited data available in the linked story.

Posted by John Venlet on 02/15 at 09:56 PM
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A Slight Misspelling

Obama calls stimulus ‘a major milestone’

This should read ‘a major millstone’ has been placed around Americans’ necks.

Posted by John Venlet on 02/15 at 09:44 AM
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Saturday, February 14, 2009

Tick, Tick, Tick

Federal obligations exceed world GDP
Does $65.5 trillion terrify anyone yet?

Posted by John Venlet on 02/14 at 09:25 AM
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Friday, February 13, 2009

Geert Wilders’ Speech which the UK Refused Him to Deliver

Yesterday, I noted Geert Wilders’ “Let them put me in handcuffs” statement, as he put into action civil disobedience in response to the UK’s refusal to allow him into the UK to speak before Parliament.

Geert did attempt to enter the UK, but he was detained by UK security forces and hustled back to the Netherlands, as was reported here.

Previously unknown in Britain, Mr Wilders, 45, was splashed across the media being manhandled through Heathrow as the victim of a heavy-handed state — while avoiding a grilling by the British press pack waiting at Parliament where his film was shown to an audience of less than 30.

Below is an excerpt of the speech which Geert Wilders hoped to deliver in its entirety.  Here is the link to where Geert Wilders’ entire speech can be read.

I would not qualify myself as a free man. Four and a half years ago I lost my freedom. I am under guard permanently, courtesy to those who prefer violence to debate. But for the leftist fan club of Islam, that is not enough. They started a legal procedure against me. Three weeks ago the Amsterdam Court of Appeals ordered my criminal prosecution for making Fitna and for my views on Islam. I committed what George Orwell called a ‘thought crime.’
You might have seen my name on Fitna’s credit role, but I am not really responsible for that movie. It was made for me. It was actually produced by Muslim extremists, the Quran and Islam itself. If Fitna is considered ‘hate speech,’ then how would the Court qualify the Quran, with all it’s calls for violence, and hatred against women and Jews?

Posted by John Venlet on 02/13 at 01:10 PM
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An Open Letter to President Barack Hussein Obama

Sir,

I write this to letter to express dismay at your ability to keep your word, and your supposed contracts with individual Americans.  You are demonstrating to the American people that you are untrustworthy, that your words hold no meaning, that you speak empty phrases, and any contract you present to the American public should immediately be trod upon in recognition of the fact that it is meaningless.

To wit, at your website, www.change.gov, specifically at the Agenda - Ethics page, you state,

End the Practice of Writing Legislation Behind Closed Doors: As president, Barack Obama will restore the American people’s trust in their government by making government more open and transparent. Obama will work to reform congressional rules to require all legislative sessions, including committee mark-ups and conference committees, to be conducted in public. By making these practices public, the American people will be able to hold their leaders accountable for wasteful spending and lawmakers won’t be able to slip favors for lobbyists into bills at the last minute.

This has not happened, as is reported here.

Additionally, your contract with the American people stated,

Sunlight Before Signing: Too often bills are rushed through Congress and to the president before the public has the opportunity to review them. As president, Obama will not sign any non-emergency bill without giving the American public an opportunity to review and comment on the White House website for five days.

Shine Light on Earmarks and Pork Barrel Spending: Obama’s Transparency and Integrity in Earmarks Act will shed light on all earmarks by disclosing the name of the legislator who asked for each earmark, along with a written justification, 72 hours before they can be approved by the full Senate.

Sir, neither of these contract terms, as quoted above, are being complied with, further evidence that your words and contracts are untrustworthy.  Proof of this is reported here, where it is noted you desire to sign this bill on Monday, February 16, 2009, and this bill has not even been fully approved or sent to your desk as of Friday, February 13, 2009.  How can you, sir, claim that you are honoring your contract with the American people?  How can you, sir, stand as a leader of the greatest nation in the world, when your words cannot even be trusted by the American people?

Let me also point out, sir, that attempting to pass this stimulus bill with alacrity, as an “emergency” measure, and then attempting to hide behind the words in your contract with the American people which state that five (5) days of review will be given to the American people only for “non-emergency” bills, is cowardly and dishonest.  The United States’ current financial situation, while in pain, is not under any emergency requiring instantaneous action.

Mr. President, you, sir, are rushing blindly, and headlong, into territory which you have inadequately reconnoitered, summoning the American people to blindly follow you to their deaths.  I can only hope, for the American people, that the lack of validity in your words and contracts, which so blatantly display your untrustrworthiness, will cause then to stand up and say no this ill advised stimulus bill.  The question is, sir, will you listen to the people of the United States, or continue to blatantly display your lack of trustworthiness and thus your disrepect to each and every American?

Respectfully,

John Venlet

Posted by John Venlet on 02/13 at 08:53 AM
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Thursday, February 12, 2009

“Real Money” versus Stimulus Play Money

I spent a few days recently in the company of some money managers with a total of about $2 trillion to invest, precisely the sort of folks whose confidence the government is currently trying to win.  How did they feel about all of the rule and policy changes coming out of Washington and the new more muscular government?  Terrified.

The “real money” investors didn’t want to invest alongside the government.  Their concern is that if things go south, the government will take 100% of the value left in the bank or whatever and leave private investors, including recent ones, with nothing.  This is precisely what happened to recent investors in Fannie Mae.

From a post at Philip Greenspun’s Weblog titled The Audacity of Doing Nothing.

Via Reynolds.

Posted by John Venlet on 02/12 at 07:08 PM
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Stop the Stimulus and Prevent the Ruination of the Free Market

On Tuesday, I noted that adjustable rate mortgages, which are currently adjusting, are adjusting downward, and stated that instead of blindly rushing to pass a stimulus bill, the wiser course would be to hang tight and see what else may in occur in the economy as it attempts to correct itself.

Well, there are other goings on in the economy, if attention is being paid by Obama et al in Washington D.C., which counsel stopping the stimulus and continuing to allow the economy to correct itself.  It may be painful, it will not be instantaneous, but it will mend, while passing the stimulus bill, which is currently being trumpeted, is simply trumpeting ruination, like Joshua bringing down the walls of Jericho.

U.S. Retail Sales Unexpectedly Halt Six-Month Slide

Foreclosure numbers down on Central Coast and across nation

Ford, GM execs see auto industry sales stabilizing

I am certain there are other positive economic signs out there, which must be paid attention to, rather than allowing Obama et al to ruin us as individuals, and the free market, because he desires to pass a stimulus bill without thinking.

Stop the stimulus and prevent the ruination of the free market.

Posted by John Venlet on 02/12 at 05:24 PM
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Well, That’s Not What I Wanted to Hear

About ten days ago, I mentioned I was having some problems with my right arm.  I was hoping it was simply a pinched nerve.  It’s not.

The current initial diagnosis is transverse myelitis, but, further MRIs of the brain and entire spinal column have been scheduled, with the possibilty of a spinal tap, to determine if in actuality I may have multiple sclerosis.  Dang it!

Looks like I have a new subject to research.

As Billy Beck is wont to say, “Onward.”

Posted by John Venlet on 02/12 at 03:55 PM
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The Coming Unrest - Presentiment or Simply Understanding the Trend?

The news that a stimlus bill agreement is closer to being foisted upon unwilling Americans is creating alot of chatter, and I think the $13 bucks a week bone being thrown to the actual working citizens of the United States could be the match to ignite, justifiably and desperately needed, a malstrom of discontent against the State.

Karen DeCoster links to a post at Picasso Dreams under the heading Gerald Celente: Revolution, Food Riots, Tax Rebellions wherein Celente, CEO of Trends Research Institute and known for a rather accurate track record in predictions of market trends, looks forward.

Celente says that by 2012 America will become an undeveloped nation, that there will be a revolution marked by food riots, squatter rebellions, tax revolts and job marches, and that holidays will be more about obtaining food, not gifts.

Posted by John Venlet on 02/12 at 09:37 AM
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Geert Wilders - “Let them put me in handcuffs”

I’ve mentioned Geert Wilders’ problems with the politically correct protectors of Islamic insensibilty here and here.  My most recent post chronicling Geert’s harrassment noted that he was being denied entry into the UK.

Well, Geert has declared he is going to the UK, no matter what.

An anti-Islam Dutch politician vows to fly to Great Britain on Thursday despite a government ban on his entering the country, and he’s daring the “weak and cowardly” British government to arrest him when he gets there.

“I’ll see what happens at the border,” Geert Wilders told Radio Netherlands on Wednesday. “Let them put me in handcuffs.”

Despite Ban, Dutch Lawmaker Vows to Visit ‘Cowardly’ Britain

A fine example of civil disobedience, which is something we need more of, not only in the UK, but here in the United States, and around the world.

Posted by John Venlet on 02/12 at 08:56 AM
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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

$13 Bucks a Week Stimulus

So, news is the working citizens of the United States of America will be stimulated to the tune of about $13 bucks a week, for six months, and then $8 bucks a week after that.

Q: What are some of the tax breaks in the bill?

A: It includes Obama’s signature “Making Work Pay” tax credit for 95 percent of workers, though negotiators agreed to trim the credit to $400 a year instead of $500 — or $800 for married couples, cut from Obama’s original proposal of $1,000. It would begin showing up in most workers’ paychecks in June as an extra $13 a week in take-home pay, falling to about $8 a week next January.

Americans may as well go out and search for returnable bottles and cans.

Meltdown 101: Highlights of economic stimulus plan

Posted by John Venlet on 02/11 at 07:52 PM
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Nancy Pelosi, Colluding Republicans and Civil Unrest

I find it interesting to occasionally Google the words “civil unrest” into the Google News search engine.  Today, the search engine provides links to 1808 news stories which reference civil unrest.

The stories reference Russia, Bolivia, EU states, China, Tibet, Iceland, Liberia, Madagascar, the UK and of course the possibility of civil unrest right here in the United States.

The news story which wonders at the possibility of civil unrest here in the United States, which is published by the Asia Times Online, is headlined Muscled-up Pelosi casts shadow on world, and is an interesting read.  The concluding paragraph.

Unfortunately for American and international investors, Pelosi pressured the president into the worst of all plans. It will likely bring on an economic catastrophe, characterized by depression followed by hyper-stagflation and civil unrest. Pelosi’s power play may buy her political status, but the entire world will pay the price.

Posted by John Venlet on 02/11 at 12:19 PM
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Bird Count

The Great Backyard Bird Count takes place February 13 - February 16, this year.

Details at the link.  I’ll be counting the birds at my feeders.

Posted by John Venlet on 02/11 at 10:49 AM
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Marijuana Health Benefits from Harvard

A few days ago, media outlets were pushing a story that marijuana use possibly could lead to prostate cancer.  If one read about this carefully, though, one would find that the alleged risk of developing prostate cancer due to smoking marijuana was quite small and almost non-existent.

Paul Armentano, who is the NORML Deputy Director, discussed this in a piece titled OPINION: Media Hysterics about Supposed Marijuana-Cancer Link Not New.

In actuality, per study results emanating out of Harvard University, we learn this.

The active ingredient in marijuana cuts tumor growth in common lung cancer in half and significantly reduces the ability of the cancer to spread, say researchers at Harvard University who tested the chemical in both lab and mouse studies.

Now, where is that bong?

THC cuts lung cancer growth, spread

Posted by John Venlet on 02/11 at 09:47 AM
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