Thursday, April 16, 2009
Fox News televised the partial unloading of more than 1 million of our tea bags at Lafayette Park in Washington, D.C. near the White House this morning (note background of photo)! Unfortunately, representatives of The Patriot Depot and Reagan.org were told by National Park Services officials to reload the truck. Why? Even though the original protest permit was approved, our tea bag team was conveniently told that it was not the "proper" permit.
This is an absolute outrage and a denial of our First Amendment rights, which read:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
Sunday, April 12, 2009
organizers modeled after Saul Alinsky's 'Peoples Organizations.'" So which is it?
In an era in which Congress can approve thousands of pages of legislation spending hundreds of billions of dollars without reading the proposal, there seems to be no definitive answer on what some of the vague language of H.R. 1388 means.
But there is enough in the "GIVE Act," now awaiting a conference committee in Congress after being approved by both the U.S. House and Senate, to cause critics to shiver.
For example, it certainly imposes a requirement for public service on some people, even though its original much-feared study on mandatory service for all was moved to another bill during congressional debate.
"The Audacity of Deceit" exposes exactly who Barack Obama is. He isn't pedaling "change you can believe in" – he's planning to uproot American culture and replace it with the failed, secular, socialist policies of the past.
The latest version includes a "National Service Reserve Corps" whose members have completed a "term of national service," "has successfully completed training" and "complete not less than 10 hours of volunteering each year."
It also raises First Amendment issues over its limitations on what various corps participants are allowed to do.
For example, it states those in an "approved national service position" may not try to influence legislation, engage in protests or petitions, take positions on union organizing
, engage in partisan political activities, or, among other issues, be "engaging in religious instruction, conducting worship services, providing instruction as part of a program that includes mandatory religious instruction or worship, constructing or operating facilities devoted to religious instruction or worship, maintaining facilities primarily or inherently devoted to religious instruction or worship, or engaging in any form of proselytization."
But probably the biggest red flag for many is how the proposal fits into the overall picture painted by President Obama when he described to a Colorado Springs audience a "National Civilian Security Force" that he wants as big and well-funded as the U.S. military – a staggering suggestion that would involve hundreds of billions of dollars a year.
WND reported when the bill began its quick trip through Congress, and its original language called for a study of how best to implement a mandatory national service program for citizens of the United States.
Later the language was dropped from that bill, only to appear at the same time in another legislative proposal.
Judi McLeod wrote for Canada Free Press that the bill simply would turn everyone into a community organizer.
"Everybody means the roughly seven million people called to public duty in the $6 billion National Service effort," she said. "But members pressed into the service of the one million-strong Youth Brigade, sanctioned by 'Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education
(GIVE),' will have none of the freedoms of the community organizer who started it all.
"There's no room for God in Obama's long promised Youth Brigade, no room to protest, petition, to boycott or to support a strike, and loopholes to give its mandatory membership a pass," she wrote. "Obama's plan requires anyone receiving school loans, among others to serve at least three months as part of the brigade."
She also describes one section with a program to introduce "service learning" as "a mandatory part of the curriculum in all of the secondary schools served by the local educational agency."
The plan suggests raising the participation in such programs from 75,000 now to 250,000.
Gary Wood at Examiner.com said it's part of Obama's plan to set up national service. He noted the explanation offered by White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel: "It's time for a real Patriot Act that brings out the patriot in all of us. We propose universal civilian service for every young American. Under this plan, all Americans between the ages of 18 and 25 will be asked to serve their country by going through three months of basic training, civil defense preparation and community service."
Gary Lester, writing at All American Blogger, put into words the worst fears of opponents.
"Hitler knew that if you control the youth, you control the future. I wrote about him in 'The Threats to Homeschooling: From Hitler to the NEA.' As I noted in that article, Hitler said: 'The Youth of today is ever the people of tomorrow. For this reason we have set before ourselves the task of innoculating our youth with the spirit of this community of the people at a very early age, at an age when human beings are still unperverted and therefore unspoiled,'" he wrote.
He cited the Hitler Youth's launch in the 1920s. In 1933, the participants totaled 100,000, and in 1939 the membership was compulsory for those over 17. Two years later, the membership was compulsory for those over 10, and it included 90 percent of the nation's youth.
He also cited concerns it would steer volunteers away from churches, politicize charity and focus on the "education" of participants.
"The legislation will, in many circumstances, force our children to participate in charitable activity as part of school – and that activity may well be chosen by or approved by a bureaucrat," he suggested.
At Washington Watch one forum participant warned, "Our republic is under attack as never before."
Said another, "This is social engineering at the very least, and could be the first step towards the reinstitution of slavery! Take heed, the New World Order (aka 'Change') draws nigh!"
WND reported when Obama delivered his Colorado Springs mandate and a copy of the speech provided online apparently was edited to exclude Obama's specific references to the new force.
Monday, April 6, 2009
MINSTER, OH- Jon Hoying, president of Fabcor Inc., is flying his company's American flag upside down as a protest to recent government actions.
He flipped the flag a week ago and then went home that night and pondered whether to change the display the next morning. Ultimately, he decided it would stay that way as one man's message to the powers that be in Washington, D.C.
"It hurts me to see my flag with the union down," the father of five says. "It is a painful reminder to me and hopefully to others that the time has come to stand up for what is right and good in our great nation before it ceases to exist."
Hoying feels "We the People" has become "We the Government" with their talk of a one world order, one world currency, taking away the right to bear arms, nationalized health care, forced volunteerism, massive tax increases, regulating and taking over free enterprise, funding the United Nations population control fund, large deficits and government funded abortions among other concerns.
"We have to wake up and take back our country," he says. "I've got a message to get across, but Washington won't hear if I jump up and down screaming and hollering. It takes something visual for people to stop and take notice."
Hoying means no disrespect displaying the flag in such manner, adding it is the official signal of distress when done for the right reasons. "The Flag Code" states the flag should never be displayed with the union down except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life and property.
"I am one voice of many who believe the life, liberty and property of U.S. citizens are in dire danger and distress," he says. "As a nation I feel we are quickly headed down the wrong path. Where are the values and principles that made this a great nation? Have our leaders lost all common sense or are they purposefully gearing us toward socialism? Our God given right to freedom is at risk."Hoying decided to take ac-tion immediately after news broke about bonuses paid to AIG employees in the wake of a government bailout - something he believes President Barack Obama knew about and wholeheartedly condoned. He adds another sign of "too much government" is the president requesting the head of General Motors to step down.
"Free enterprise is what makes our country so great," he says. "Now even that is in danger."
One has only to walk through the company located at 350 S. Ohio St. to realize the patriotism Hoying and his employees share. From the "Proud to be an American" banner in the front lobby to multiple Star Spangled banners suspended from rafters in the work area. Huge letters spell out "God Bless America" on the front of a delivery truck proclaiming a message that appeared in the wake of the 9/11 tragedy while American flag emblems decorate the shoulder of each employee uniform. Even the mouse pads the company distributes to customers have a patriotic theme.
He admits the flag display has generated a number of telephone calls. One caller vehemently disagreed with his logic while the other seven listened to his logic and voiced no more complaints. Company officials taped an explanation to the front door and more printed copies are available at the reception window.
"If everyone who shares my concern would also fly their flags with the union down maybe we would finally have our voices heard in Washington," Hoying says looking out the window at the flagpole overlooking a pond. "I am not dishonoring my country; I love my country and want my kids to have the same opportunities I have been blessed with."
Sunday, April 5, 2009
Back to the current power grab by The Obama administration. Our current government is on a power grab, like nothing that has ever been seen in the history of this country. They do it in the name of economic security. Since the current situation affects such over whelming number of people, it makes it OK.
Below is a new chip of what going on at this moment. I say at this Moment because in a minute or two they'll be taking a different freedom from us! I can't keep up!!!!!!
A pair of bills introduced in the U.S. Senate would grant the White House sweeping new powers to access private online data, regulate the cybersecurity industry and even shut down Internet traffic during a declared "cyber emergency."
Senate bills No. 773 and 778, introduced by Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.V., are both part of what's being called the Cybersecurity Act of 2009, which would create a new Office of the National Cybersecurity Advisor, reportable directly to the president and charged with defending the country from cyber attack.
A working draft of the legislation obtained by an Internet privacy group also spells out plans to grant the Secretary of Commerce access to all privately owned information networks deemed to be critical to the nation's infrastructure "without regard to any provision of law, regulation, rule or policy restricting such access."
Privacy advocates and Internet experts have been quick to sound the alarm over the act's broadly drawn government powers. "The cybersecurity threat is real," says Leslie Harris, president of the Center for Democracy and Technology, which obtained the draft of S.773, "but such a drastic federal intervention in private communications technology and networks could harm both security and privacy."
"The whole thing smells bad to me," writes Larry Seltzer in eWeek, an Internet and print news source on technology issues. "I don't like the chances of the government improving this situation by taking it over generally, and I definitely don't like the idea of politicizing this authority by putting it in the direct control of the president."
According to a Senate document explaining the bill, the legislation "addresses our country's unacceptable vulnerability to massive cyber crime, global cyber espionage and cyber attacks that could cripple our critical infrastructure."
In a statement explaining the bill's introduction, Sen. Rockefeller said, "We must protect our critical infrastructure at all costs – from our water to our electricity, to banking, traffic lights and electronic health records – the list goes on."
Sen. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, who is co-sponsoring the bill, added, "If we fail to take swift action, we, regrettably, risk a cyber-Katrina."
Critics, however, have pointed to three actions Rockefeller and Snowe propose that may violate both privacy concerns and even constitutional bounds:
First, the White House, through the national cybersecurity advisor, shall have the authority to disconnect "critical infrastructure" networks from the Internet – including private citizens' banks and health records, if Rockefeller's examples are accurate – if they are found to be at risk of cyber attack. The working copy of the bill, however, does not define what constitutes a cybersecurity emergency, and apparently leaves the question to the discretion of the president.
Second, the bill establishes the Department of Commerce as "the clearinghouse of cybersecurity threat and vulnerability information," including the monitoring of private information networks deemed a part of the "critical infrastructure."
Third, the legislation proposes implementation of a professional licensing program for certifying who can serve as a cybersecurity professional. And while the critics concede the need for increased security, they object to what is perceived as a dangerous and intrusive expansion of government power. "There are some problems that we face which need the weight of government behind them," writes Seltzer in eWeek. "This is not the same as creating a new federal bureaucracy setting rules over what computer security has to be and who can do it."
"It's an incredibly broad authority," CDT senior counsel Greg Nojeim told the Mother Jones news website, troubled that existing privacy laws "could fall to this authority."
Jennifer Granick, civil liberties director at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, told Mother Jones the bill is "contrary to what the Constitution promises us."
According to Granick, granting the Department of Commerce oversight of the "critical" networks, such as banking records, would grant the government access to potentially incriminating information obtained without cause or warrant, a violation of the Constitution's prohibition against unlawful search and seizure.
"What are the critical infrastructure networks? The examples provided are 'banking, utilities, air/rail/auto traffic control, telecommunications.' Let's think about this," writes Seltzer. "I'm especially curious as to how you take the telecommunications networks off of the Internet when they are, in large part, what the Internet is comprised of. And if my bank were taken offline, I would think about going into my branch and asking for all of my deposits in cash."
S. 778, which would establish the Office of the National Security Advisor, and S. 773, which provides for developing a cadre of governmental cybersecurity specialists and procedures, have both been read twice and referred to committee in the Senate.
-- Barack Obama
Saturday, April 4, 2009
I found this article by Ryan Messmore on www.heritage.org interesting.
In February, the Obama Administration announced its proposals to raise tax rates on high-income earners and to reduce their tax deduction rate on gifts made to charities. These strategies are intended to raise funds for Obama's health care plan.
The Senate Budget Committee passed an amendment by Senator Robert Bennett (R-UT) to the budget resolution that would prevent this policy from going into effect. Congress should give this amendment full consideration. In so doing, it can resist government crowd out of the valuable charitable work performed by individuals and nonprofits.
American citizens in the highest marginal personal income tax bracket are taxed at a rate of 35 percent. If they donate to a charitable organization, they can receive a tax deduction at the same 35 percent rate. For example, if a couple in this marginal bracket gives $10,000 to a hospital, they can write off $3,500 when filing their taxes.
Under Obama's proposal, beginning in 2011, families making over $250,000 a year would see their marginal personal income tax rate rise from 35 percent to 39.6 percent. Rather than keeping the charitable deduction rate consistent with the tax rate, Obama proposes reducing it to 28 percent. At this reduced rate, the possible tax write off from a $10,000 donation would drop from $3,500 to $2,800, a difference of $700.
The Obama Administration estimates that its proposed tax changes will fill government health care coffers with around $630 billion over 10 years.
The Likely Consequences
The President claims that his tax plan will only have a small negative effect on charitable giving. Percentage-wise, this may be true, but the estimated reduction in giving means billions of dollars less each year for charities, especially if weak economic conditions continue.
Scholars at the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University estimated that, had Obama's proposed changes been in place in 2006, total itemized contributions from wealthy households would have dropped almost $4 billion.
While this amount is only a small percentage of total charitable donations given each year, it represents more than the annual operating budgets of the American Cancer Society, World Vision, St. Jude's Children's Hospital, Habitat for Humanity, and the American Heart Association combined. Moreover, other scholars estimate that under Obama's proposal charitable organizations would see donations drop possibly by as much as $9 billion every year.
In addition to receiving less money from wealthy donors, charitable organizations under Obama's plan could face a more subtle yet significant challenge: government crowding them out of social welfare provision. This phenomenon occurs when government claims increasing responsibility for tasks once performed by civil society, absorbing a larger percentage of the resources dedicated to carrying out those tasks.
Obama defends his proposal as a way of "equalizing" tax breaks for donors in different tax brackets. In his March 24 prime-time news conference, Obama said it would not be fair to allow wealthy donors to write off more than lower- or middle-income donors who give the same amount. "Ultimately," he added, "if we're going to tackle the serious problems that we've got, then in some cases those who are more fortunate are going to have to pay a little bit more."
But Obama ignores the fact that wealthy citizens get a higher deduction precisely because they already pay more--a lot more--in taxes. In fact, although families making over $250,000 a year represent less than 5 percent of income earners in America, they pay 48 percent of all federal income taxes. That a portion of their giving may go to private charities instead of to the government does not change the fact that, under the present tax system, the wealthy already shoulder a larger burden for social welfare. But Obama seems to believe that federal government bureaucracy can deploy the resources of the wealthy more effectively than nonprofit civil society organizations can.
President Obama has stated his desire to help "folks who have fallen on very hard times." Yet he is standing by his proposal to lower deductions for charitable giving, which would hamper efforts by nonprofits to help needy families. The President seems to be letting his desire to equalize differences undercut his desire to help the poor.
Perhaps most importantly, Obama's proposal says something about who Obama thinks can best determine how to distribute people's money.
In their influential book To Empower People, Peter Berger and the late Richard John Neuhaus describe the importance to a healthy democratic society of "mediating institutions"--i.e., forms of association like the family, church, and nonprofit organization that stand between citizens and the large institutions of public life.
Mediating institutions are essential for generating and maintaining the operative values of society. They are also well-equipped to provide a helping hand to people in the context of face-to-face relationships. They have intimate knowledge of those in need--they understand social problems in up-close and personal ways. Driven by deep convictions and compassion, such organizations can provide loving forms of assistance and care that government programs cannot offer. And they often do so for less money. Smaller and more flexible than most government bureaucracies, local congregations and charities can also spawn creative social innovations that benefit those in need.
Berger and Neuhaus claim that public policy should "cease and desist from damaging mediating structures." More than that, though, public policy should protect mediating institutions and, where possible without co-opting them, empower them in their efforts to promote the common good.
The tax plan put forward in Obama's 2010 budget blueprint, however, implies that the state should assume responsibility for people's needs even at the expense of vital mediating institutions. And it communicates the notion that America is better off with expansive and intrusive--rather than limited--government.
In short, Obama's proposed tax plan penalizes those who can give the most, shifts dollars from citizens and local private charities to distant government bureaucracy, and prioritizes mandatory taxation to voluntary tithing and giving.
Unfortunately, Obama's proposed tax changes move the dial of social responsibility one more notch in the direction of the state. This sets a course for adopting many future policies that could chip away at local, personal, mutual obligation and increase dependence on government. For an example of this, one need look no further than Obama's vision of expanding government control over health care, which is the very objective behind proposals to raise taxes and reduce charitable deductions for wealthy citizens.
The Bully Pulpit
Obama should use his presidential authority and influence to encourage voluntary giving and protect nonprofit groups, especially during tough economic times. President Obama speaks articulately and often of the important role charitable institutions play in America. He should send an equally clear message in his policy. Reconsidering the tax changes proposed for charitable donations would be good place to begin.
Ryan Messmore is William E. Simon Fellow in Religion and a Free Society in the Richard and Helen DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society at The Heritage Foundation.
The marginal tax rate is the statutory rate at which a taxpayer's last dollar of income is taxed.
Those in the second highest income bracket would also see their personal income tax rate increase, from 33 percent to 36 percent.
If the charitable deduction instead stayed consistent with the increased tax rate at 39.6 percent, the difference in tax savings would be even greater. According to that scenario, the couple making a $10,000 gift would go from a $3,960 deduction to a $2,800 deduction, a difference of $1,160.
"Obama's Tax Plan Could Cause Giving by the Wealthy to Drop by Several Billion Dollars Annually," Chronicle of Philanthropy, February 27, 2009, at http://philanthropy.com/news/updates/index.php?id=7285 (April 2, 2009).
Based on 2007 and 2008 figures available on the organizations' Web sites.
"The Charity Revolt: Liberals Oppose a Tax Hike on Rich Donors," The Wall Street Journal, March 10, 2009, at http://online.wsj.com/article
/SB123664427493678121.html (April 2, 2009); Ryan J. Donmoyer, "Rich Donors May Be Undeterred by Tax Caps on Charitable Gifts," Bloomberg.com, March 4, 2009, at http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive
&sid=aRLx2HwnWyWs (April 2, 2009).
See Arthur C. Brooks, Who Really Cares: The Surprising Truth about Compassionate Conservatism (New York: Basic Books, 2006), p. 58.
Transcript available at http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/24/us/
See "Who's paying how much to IRS--December 10, 2008," The Heritage Foundation A La Chart No. 39, at http://www.heritage.org/Press/ALAChart
Transcript available at http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/24/us/politics/
Peter L. Berger and Richard John Neuhaus, To Empower People: From State to Civil Society, ed. Michael Novak, 20th anniversary edition (Washington, DC: The AEI Press, 1996), p. 158.
Ibid., p. 163.
Now, lets look at some comparisons:
According to their tax returns, in 2006 and 2007, the Obamas gave 5.8 percent and 6.1 percent of their income to charity. I guess Michelle Obama has to draw the line someplace with all this "giving back" stuff. The Bidens gave 0.15 percent and 0.31 percent of the income to charity.
No wonder Obama doesn't see what the big fuss is over his decision to limit tax deductions for charitable giving. At least that part of Obama's tax plan won't affect his supporters.
Meanwhile, in 1991, 1992 and 1993, George W. Bush had incomes of $179,591,$212,313 and $610,772. His charitable contributions those years were $28,236,$31,914 and $31,292. During his presidency, Bush gave away more than 10 percent of his income each year.
For purposes of comparison, in 2005, Barack Obama made $1.7 million -- more than twice President Bush's 2005 income of $735,180 -- but they both gave about the same amount to charity.
That same year, the heartless Halliburton employee Vice President Dick Cheney gave 77 percent of his income to charity. The following year, in 2006, Bush gave more to charity than Obama on an income one-third smaller than Obama's. Maybe when Obama talks about "change" he's referring to his charitable contributions.
Liberals have no intention of actually parting with any of their own wealth or lifting a finger to help the poor. That's for other people to do with what's left of their incomes after the government has taken its increasingly large cut.
Are you fed up with a Congress and President who voted for a $500 billion tax bill without even reading it, passing trillions of dollars in debt to our great-grandchildren, giving special interest groups billions of dollars in earmarks to help get themselves re-elected, taking your hard-earned money and redistributing it to others.
I am, that’s why I am supporting and attending a local Tea Party on April 15th. The fact is there are Tax Day Tea Parties scheduled in cities around the country on April 15th.
Visit here find your local Tea Party: http://taxdayteaparty.com/
Thursday, April 2, 2009
He gave the Queen of England an iPod? Really? What a dope! After the gaffe with the DVDs that he gave Gordon Brown you would think that he would have wisened up and sought some professional help to help him choose the perfect gift. SHE IS THE QUEEN OF ENGLAND NOT SOME HAG OFF THE STREET. Show a little respect! Obama is an embarassment to this country. And they thought Bush was a bad president? This guy has him beat by a country mile.