Welcome to our Blog

In March of 2011 my wife and I quit or jobs, cashed in our chips and left the big city behind to move to our farm hidden away in northeast Georgia. These are our observations on the news of the day and our adventures in homesteading, becoming self reliant, prepping and living a simpler, more fulfilling life.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Report on the Nation #9

Reid signals government jobs must take priority over private-sector jobs

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Wednesday indicated Congress needs to worry about government jobs more than private-sector jobs, and that this is why Senate Democrats are pushing a bill aimed at shoring up teachers and first-responders.
"It's very clear that private-sector jobs have been doing just fine; it's the public-sector jobs where we've lost huge numbers, and that's what this legislation is all about," Reid said on the Senate floor. Read more... http://thehill.
Do you mean public sector UNION (read Democrat fund raising and voting) jobs Harry?- JP

“Under this bill, when the Republicans vote for this bill today, they will be voting to say that women can die on the floor, and health care providers do not have to intervene if this bill is passed. It’s just appalling,”Nancy Pelosi (D) told reporters on Thursday.
More outrageous commentary from the wicked witch of the west. She is truly the queen of the Fear Speak designed for prime time main stream ...uh..humm... news soundbites, damn evil Republicans.........- JP

In Flint, Michigan, Vice President Biden warned residents that if the "American Jobs Act" isn't passed that there will  be more rapes and murders in the city and across the nation.... and it will be the fault of the Republicans.

 Vice President Biden, stumping for the Obama jobs bill in Flint, Michigan, recently,  always creative in his rhetoric, suggested that not passing the bill would create- in fairly explicit language- more violent crime. As usual ...he speaks....and head scratching soon follows.- JP

Biden’s Flint Fiasco, Continued

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Murder, rape and robbery are declining in spite of police layoffs in Flint, Mich. — according to the most recent official report released by the State Police. Those and other reported “index” crimes were down11.5 percent overall during the first six months of this year, compared with the same six-month period last year.
We’ve continued to dig into the statistics for crime-ridden Flint because we caught Vice President Joe Biden misrepresenting them repeatedly as he argued for passage of the administration’s jobs legislation. Republicans accused the vice president of fear-mongering, as he toured the country warning that there would be more rapes, murders, robberies and other crimes without fresh federal funds to help localities like Flint avoid further layoffs of police.
Speaking in Flint on Oct. 12, Biden said murder and rape statistics skyrocketed in that city from 2008 to 2010 (even though, as we reported, FBI data show rapes in Flint declined during that period). Biden then added: “God only knows what the numbers will be this year in Flint.” Actually the Michigan State Police know, for at least the first six months of the year, because the city is required to report instances of crime. And rather than supporting Biden’s argument, the evidence we found undercuts it. Read more... http://factcheck.org

 Then you’ve got their plan, which is, let’s have dirtier air, dirtier water, less people with health insurance. So far at least, I feel better about my plan.”
The Republican plan says that what’s been standing in the way between us and full employment are laws that keep companies from polluting as much as they want,” Obama said in a speech at the regional airport in Asheville, N.C., on Monday.

The Government Will Tell You “You Are On Your Own”

At a million-dollar San Francisco fundraiser today, President Obama warned his recession-battered supporters that if he loses the 2012 election it could herald a new, painful era of self-reliance in America.
“The one thing that we absolutely know for sure is that if we don’t work even harder than we did in 2008, then we’re going to have a government that tells the American people, ‘you are on your own,’” Obama told a crowd of 200 donors over lunch at the W Hotel.
“If you get sick, you’re on your own. If you can’t afford college, you’re on your own. If you don’t like that some corporation is polluting your air or the air that your child breathes, then you’re on your own,” he said. “That’s not the America I believe in. It’s not the America you believe in.”

All of the above leftist rhetoric is absured and stands in the way of finding solutions to solve our troubled nations many problems. How is it that for two of the past three years the Democrats controlled all of our Federal Government and even now controls two thirds yet they insist that it's all the Republicans fault.

Below are a few words of true wisdom from President Obama's 2008 campaign:  
What the American people hope -– what they deserve -– is for all of us, Democrats and Republicans, to work through our differences; to overcome the numbing weight of our politics.                                                                                                               

Change doesn't come from Washington. Change comes to Washington.
BARACK OBAMA, DNC speech, Aug. 28, 2008 

I don't want to pit Red America against Blue America. I want to be President of the United States of America.

BARACK OBAMA, speech, Nov. 10, 2007

The strongest democracies flourish from frequent and lively debate, but they endure when people of every background and belief find a way to set aside smaller differences in service of a greater purpose.

With the magnitude of the challenges we face right now, what we need in Washington are not more political tactics -- we need more good ideas. We don't need more point-scoring -- we need more problem-solving.
Obama promised us change, he said he would bring the country together and we would solve it's problems.... together.... but after he and the Dems won big... "I won," Obama told Republicans... we control both houses.... we don't need you....

 I don't think anyone can argue that Obama has lead us through some kind of change- and it has certainly been change that we can believe, if not believe in.  He has done his best to put up a good front.  He has mouthed all the platitudes.  Work harder, trust us, Republicans are pure evil, believe more.  Like all good Marxists the message usually stays the same.  The reason things did not work; the people did not believe sufficiently enough and the other side did not work in good faith with us. He said much to gain our trust and our vote but after winning he showed from the start he never meant it. The thing I admire about Clinton is he was the President of all the people, he pivoted when needed and together with the Republican controlled congress they accomplished great things (a balanced budget, Welfare reform, 400 billion paid down on our national dept) among others. Obama, trapped in his meandering Marxist philosophy is not capable of such a pivot. In his own refusal to change he shows he's not (as he claimed he would be) a President to all.... and soon, he may well be the President of none.- JP

What a surprise: Justice Department wants changes to Freedom of information act

In what might be the most Transparent Thing the Scandal Ridden Obama Administration has done yet, Eric Holder’s Justice Department is pushing for a rule change to the Freedom of Information Act.  The change would allow liars in the Administration to lie legally about the existence of documents being sought by Investigative Reporters and watchdog groups like Judicial Watch.. Read more... grumpyelder.com

Judicial Watch Obtains Documents Detailing Secret Department of Justice Transparency Workshop

Only in Washington would political appointees think it appropriate to keep secret a government workshop on transparency. And only in Washington would a politician promote his efforts on transparency while simultaneously taking steps to keep the American people in the dark about their government.
But that’s exactly what the Obama White House did on December 7, 2009. And Judicial Watch now has the evidence to prove it. Read more... http://www.judicialwatch

Amazing how in just 3 short years Obama has broken most of his campaign promises: lower the dept, usher in a new era of open government and transparency , stop wasteful spending, on and on...... It's not that he didn't fulfill his promises, in most cases he did the opposite.... he has become what he railed against... he has become the Anti-Obama- JP

This is not an endorsement- just trying to spread info
I will note that he has a considerable history geared toward efficient government, and solving social and international problems and he is often said to be the "smartest man in the room" regardless of who may be present. I have little doubt he would crush Obama in any debate.
Dream team: Newt Gingrich / Marco Rubio

Newt Gingrich is the architect of the “Contract with America” that led the Republican Party to victory in 1994 by capturing the majority in the U.S. House for the first time in forty years.
Under Newt’s leadership, Congress passed the first balanced budget in a generation, leading to the repayment of over $400 billion in debt.  Congress also cut taxes for the first time in sixteen years and reformed welfare, leading to over sixty percent of welfare recipients either getting a job or going to school.  In addition, the Congress restored funding to strengthen our defense and intelligence capabilities, an action later lauded by the bipartisan 9/11 Commission.
The Washington Times has called Newt Gingrich “the indispensable leader” and Time magazine, in naming him Man of the Year for 1995, said, “Leaders make things possible. Exceptional leaders make them inevitable. Newt Gingrich belongs in the category of the exceptional.”
Born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Newt's experiences as the son of a career soldier convinced him at an early age to dedicate his life to his country and to the protection of freedom. Realizing the importance of understanding the past in order to protect the future, he immersed himself in the study of history, receiving his Bachelor’s degree from Emory University and Master’s and Doctorate in Modern European History from Tulane University. Before his election to Congress in 1978, Newt taught History and Environmental Studies at West Georgia College for eight years. He represented Georgia in Congress for twenty years, including four years as Speaker of the House.
Newt served on the Defense Policy Board under President George W. Bush, which provided strategic counsel to the Pentagon and Secretary of Defense on how to better address threats facing the United States.  He is also the longest-serving teacher of the Joint War Fighting course for Major Generals at Air University and taught officers from all five services as an honorary Distinguished Visiting Scholar and Professor at the National Defense University.  In 1999, Gingrich was appointed to the United States Commission on National Security/21st Century, the Hart/Rudman Commission to examine our national security challenges as far out as 2025. The Commission's report is the most profound rethinking of defense strategy since 1947.
Newt is widely recognized for his commitment to a better system of health for all Americans.  His leadership helped save Medicare from bankruptcy, prompted FDA reform to help the seriously ill and initiated a new focus on research, prevention, and wellness. His contributions have been so great that the American Diabetes Association awarded him their highest non-medical award and the March of Dimes named him their 1995 Citizen of the Year.
In 2003, Newt founded the Center for Health Transformation to develop free market healthcare reforms to foster a 21st Century System of health and healthcare that is centered on the individual, prevention focused, knowledge intense and innovation rich.  Newt also served as the Co-Chairman of the National Commission for Quality Long-term Care and the independent congressional Alzheimer’s Disease Study Group. 
Newt and his wife, Callista, host and produce award-winning documentary films, including A City Upon a Hill, Nine Days that Changed the World, Ronald Reagan: Rendezvous with Destiny,and Rediscovering God in America.Together, Newt and Callista also author photo books and record audio books.
Newt is the author of twenty-three books, including thirteen New York Times bestsellers.
The Gingriches reside in McLean, Virginia. Their family includes two daughters and two grandchildren.

The homestead Report

We've been very busy (hence the late post). We've been adding to our stocks of food: soups, canned meats, rice, flower, sugar and canned veggies, and working on a rotating system.... more on this next week.

This past Saturday was the first day of gun season for deer. Some of my friends had some success.
A buddy of mine Raymond got an 8 pointer- he took it to the processor.
Another buddy Rex got a 215lbs 8 pointer- , his brother Rob got a nice doe- they process the deer themselves and are teaching me how.
A few pics:
 Raymond & Rex processing a buck

Rob starting on the doe

We've been cutting, collecting and stacking firewood for our fire pit... burned a huge pile this past weekend.

We had company this past weekend, our son and his family came for a visit and Rourke from modernsurvivalonline.com also brought his family and spent a couple of days. We cooked ribs, beer can chicken, did some shooting, played with the 4x4, talked current events and survival. Saturday night we had a big bomb fire and Rourke's 2 sons worked hard and kept the fire blazing for a solid 
6 hours.
Rourke shooting 

Roaring fire

Fire pit

Pics from the week:

Fall...a time that symbolizes change. For this photographer, the fall represents a time when my family would often travel to Northern New England. A drive through Franconia Notch and over the Kangamagus Highway during autumn evoked a feeling of both wonder and serenity. As the air turned colder and the days became shorter, people quieted themselves, preparing for winter. Apple pie, pumpkins turned Jack-o-lantern and costumed trick or treaters were always a part of this wonderful season!!!!!  The fall...there are endless wonderful memories of raking leaves, building scarecrows, and sitting by the fireplace sipping hot cocoa...These are the priceless events of our lives and memories we can share with our children through stories and through practice...  Enjoy the season of fall!!!!!  pics and words provided by Steph Wilkins

Monday, October 24, 2011

Sorry for the delay, update will be a bit later in the week- JP

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Report on the Nation

A Monumental Disregard For the Truth
    According to the mainstream media... chuckle ...The One's administration is going through a bit of a rough patch... Methinks it may be a bit more serious than that.

"Fire somebody. No- Fire a lot of people. This may be news to you but this is not going well"- James Carville

The One and his Handlers have shown a distinction for multifaceted ineptness few thought possible.
The economy continues it's slow sink, as we drown, Obama promises us air but just gives us more water. His Administration stumbles  from one fiasco to the next- with little time to recover. The scandals now come in waves, eroding what little confidents still remains. The never ending blame game, Green Jobs, Solyndra, Rewriting loans, the EPA, SEC, Gunwalker... on and on with the promise of more to come. The Obama administration unknowingly has re-branded itself as either a modern day comedy of errors or an inept, inadequate and unlawful gang of elitists who's deeply flawed vision is based on incomplete analysis and unsound theory. The nation does a collective facepalm in acknowledgement of it's own frustrations.
     Scandals come and scandals go... but not "Gunwalker" it will linger for a bit. For Obama and more specifically Eric Holder- plausible deniability is giving way to memos, emails and fact. We are fortunate to have many good and patriotic soldiers serving under these two, still fighting the good fight. Particularly since Holder's time these days is spent alternating between deflecting knowledge, pointing fingers and staring at his shoes. I suspect there will come a day... probably soon when Barry will call Eric into a somewhat darkened and very private room in the White House. Upon entering Eric will notice a large plastic sheet covering the floor, the curtains drawn tight, a mop and bucket in the corner.  There... Barry will hand Eric a sword... and ask him in his most heart felt reflections to do the right and honorable thing...... for President and country. There will be much falling on swords before November 2012..... It's going to be a bloody mess.- JP

Gunwalker: Dems Abandoning Ship?

The typical gun-control advocates don't have the president's and attorney general's backs this time.
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has come under fire this week: evidence revealed he either ignored weekly reports in the summer of 2010 that discussed Operation Fast and Furious, or he committed perjury when he claimed he first found out about the program in early 2011. The former suggests incompetence, the later criminality — either would be legitimate reasons to see him removed from office.
Read more...http://pajamasmedia.com

Issa to Holder: “You Own Fast and Furious”
WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa today sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder responding to his letter of October 7. The text of Chairman Issa's letter to Attorney General Holder is below:
Dear Attorney General Holder:
From the beginning of the congressional investigation into Operation Fast and Furious, the Department of Justice has offered a roving set of ever-changing explanations to justify its involvement in this reckless and deadly program. These defenses have been aimed at undermining the investigation. From the start, the Department insisted that no wrongdoing had occurred and asked Senator Grassley and me to defer our oversight responsibilities over its concerns about our purported interference with its ongoing criminal investigations. Additionally, the Department steadfastly insisted that gunwalking did not occur.
Once documentary and testimonial evidence strongly contradicted these claims, the Department attempted to limit the fallout from Fast and Furious to the Phoenix Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF). When that effort also proved unsuccessful, the Department next argued that Fast and Furious resided only within ATF itself, before eventually also assigning blame to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Arizona. All of these efforts were designed to circle the wagons around DOJ and its political appointees.
To that end, just last month, you claimed that Fast and Furious did not reach the upper levels of the Justice Department. Documents discovered through the course of the investigation, however, have proved each and every one of these claims advanced by the Department to be untrue. It appears your latest defense has reached a new low. Incredibly, in your letter from Friday you now claim that you were unaware of Fast and Furious because your staff failed to inform you of information contained in memos that were specifically addressed to you. At best, this indicates negligence and incompetence in your duties as Attorney General. At worst, it places your credibility into serious doubt.
Following the Committee's issuance of a subpoena over six months ago, I strongly believed that the Department would fully cooperate with Congress and support this investigation with all the means at its disposal. The American people deserve no less. Unfortunately, the Department's cooperation to date has been minimal. Hundreds of pages of documents that have been produced to my Committee are duplicative, and hundreds more contain substantial redactions, rendering them virtually worthless. The Department has actively engaged in retaliation against multiple whistleblowers, and has, on numerous occasions, attempted to disseminate false and misleading information to the press in an attempt to discredit this investigation.
Your letter dated October 7 is deeply disappointing. Instead of pledging all necessary resources to assist the congressional investigation in discovering the truth behind the fundamentally flawed Operation Fast and Furious, your letter instead did little but obfuscate, shift blame, berate, and attempt to change the topic away from the Department's responsibility in the creation, implementation, and authorization of this reckless program. You claim that, after months of silence, you "must now address these issues" over Fast and Furious because of the harmful discourse of the past few days. Yet, the only major development of these past few days has been the release of multiple documents showing that you and your senior staff had been briefed, on numerous occasions, about Fast and Furious.
The Mexican Cartels
A month after you became Attorney General, you spoke of the danger of the Mexican drug cartels, and the Sinaloa cartel in particular. The cartels, you said, "are lucrative, they are violent, and they are operated with stunning planning and precision." You promised that under your leadership "these cartels will be destroyed." You vowed that the Department of Justice would "continue to work with [its] counterparts in Mexico, through information sharing, training and mutual cooperation to jointly fight these cartels, both in Mexico and the United States."
Under your leadership, however, Operation Fast and Furious has proven these promises hollow. According to one agent, Operation Fast and Furious "armed the cartel. It is disgusting." Fast and Furious simply served as a convenient means for dangerous cartels to acquire upwards of 2,000 assault-style weapons. On top of that, the Government of Mexico was not informed about Fast and Furious. In fact, DOJ and ATF officials actively engaged in hiding information about Fast and Furious from not only Mexican officials, but also U.S. law enforcement officials operating in Mexico for fear that they would inform their Mexican counterparts. This strategy is inapposite and contradicts the promises you made to the American people.
Your September 7, 2011 Statement
On September 7, 2011, you said that "[t]he notion that [Fast and Furious] reaches into the upper levels of the Justice Department is something that at this point I don't think is supported by the facts and I think once we examine it and once the facts are revealed we'll see that's not the case." Unfortunately, the facts directly contradict this statement.
Lanny Breuer, the Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Division, clearly a member of the Department's senior leadership, knew about Fast and Furious as early as March 2010. In fact, I have learned that the amount of detail shared with Breuer's top deputies about Fast and Furious is simply astounding.
For example, Manuel Celis-Acosta was the "biggest fish" of the straw purchasing ring in Phoenix. From the time the investigation started in September 2009 until March 15, 2010, Manuel Celis-Acosta acquired at least 852 firearms valued at around $500,000 through straw purchasers. Yet in 2009, Celis-Acosta reported an Arizona taxable income of only $15,475. Between September 2009 and late January 2010, 139 of these firearms were recovered, 81 in Mexico alone. Some of these firearms were recovered less than 24 hours after they were bought.
This information, and hundreds of pages worth of additional information, was included in highly detailed wiretap applications sent for authorization to Breuer's top deputies. It is my understanding, the Department applied to the United States District Court for the District of Arizona for numerous wire taps from March 2010 to July 2010. These wire tap applications were reviewed and approved by several Deputy Assistant Attorney Generals, including Kenneth A. Blanco, John C. Keeney, and Jason M. Weinstein. Breuer's top deputies approved these wiretap applications to be used against individuals associated with the known drug cartels. As I understand it, the wire tap applications contain rich detail of the reckless operational tactics being employed by your agents in Phoenix. Although Breuer and his top deputies were informed of the operational details and tactics of Fast and Furious, they did nothing to stop the program. In fact, on a trip to Mexico Breuer trumpeted Fast and Furious as a promising investigation.
Gary Grindler, the then-Deputy Attorney General and currently your Chief of Staff, received an extremely detailed briefing on Operation Fast and Furious on March 12, 2010. In this briefing, Grindler learned such minutiae as the number of times that Uriel Patino, a straw purchaser on food stamps who ultimately acquired 720 firearms, went in to a cooperating gun store and the amount of guns that he had bought. When former Acting ATF Director Ken Melson, a career federal prosecutor, learned similar information, he became sick to his stomach:
I had pulled out all Patino's -- and ROIs is, I'm sorry, report of investigation -- and you know, my stomach being in knots reading the number of times he went in and the amount of guns that he bought. Transcribed interview of Acting ATF Director Kenneth Melson at 42.
At the time of his briefing in March of last year, Grindler knew that Patino had purchased 313 weapons and paid for all of them in cash. Unlike Melson, Grindler clearly saw nothing wrong with this. If Grindler had had the sense to shut this investigation down right then, he could have prevented the purchase of an additional 407 weapons by Patino alone. Instead, Grindler did nothing to stop the program.
Following this briefing, it is clear that Grindler did one of two things. Either, he alerted you to the name and operational details of Fast and Furious, in which case your May 3, 2011 testimony in front of Congress was false; or, he failed to inform you of the name and the operational details of Fast and Furious, in which case Grindler engaged in gross dereliction of his duties as Acting Deputy Attorney General. It is fair to infer from the fact that Grindler remains as your Chief of Staff that he did not engage in gross dereliction of his duties and told you about the program as far back as March of 2010.
In the summer of 2010, at the latest, you were undoubtedly informed about Fast and Furious. On at least five occasions you were told of the connection between Fast and Furious and a specific Mexican cartel – the very cartel that you had vowed to destroy. You were informed that Manuel Celis-Acosta and his straw purchasers were responsible for the purchase of 1,500 firearms that were then supplied to Mexican drug trafficking cartels. Yet, you did nothing to stop this program.
You failed to own up to your responsibility to safeguard the American public by hiding behind "[a]ttorneys in [your] office and the Office of the Deputy Attorney General," who you now claim did not bring this information to your attention. Holder Letter, supra note 1. As a result of your failure to act on these memos sent to you, nearly 500 additional firearms were purchased under Fast and Furious.
The facts simply do not support any claim that Fast and Furious did not reach the highest levels of the Justice Department. Actually, Fast and Furious did reach the ultimate authority in the Department – you.
Your May 3, 2011 Statement
On May 3, 2011, I asked you directly when you first knew about the operation known as Fast and Furious. You responded directly, and to the point, that you weren't "sure of the exact date, but [you] probably heard about Fast and Furious for the first time over the last few weeks." This statement, made before Congress, has proven to be patently untrue. Documents released by the Department just last week showed that you received at least seven memos about Fast and Furious starting as early as July 2010.
In your letter Friday, you blamed your staff for failing to inform you about Operation Fast and Furious when they reviewed the memos sent to you last summer. Your staff, therefore, was certainly aware of Fast and Furious over a year ago. Lanny Breuer was aware of Fast and Furious as early as March 2010, and Gary Grindler was also aware of Fast and Furious as early as March 2010. Given this frequency of high level involvement with Fast and Furious as much as a year prior to your May 3, 2011 testimony, it simply is not believable that you were not briefed on Fast and Furious until a few weeks before your testimony. At the very least, you should have known about Fast and Furious well before then. The current paper trail, which will only grow more robust as additional documents are discovered, creates the strong perception that your statement in front of Congress was less than truthful.
The February 4, 2011 Letter
Perhaps the most disturbing aspect of this intransigence is that the Department of Justice has been lying to Congress ever since the inquiry into Fast and Furious began. On February 4, 2011, Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich wrote that "ATF makes every effort to interdict weapons that have been purchased illegally and prevent their transport into Mexico." This letter, vetted by both the senior ranks of ATF as well as the Office of the Deputy Attorney General, is a flat-out lie.
As we understand it, in March 2010, top deputies to Lanny Breuer were informed that law enforcement officers intercepted calls that demonstrated that Manuel Celis-Acosta was conspiring to purchase and transport firearms for the purpose of trafficking the firearms from the United States into Mexico. Not only was ATF aware of this information, but so was the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. This information was shared with the Criminal Division. All of these organizations are components of the Department of Justice, and they were all aware of the illegal purchase of firearms and their eventual transportation into Mexico.
These firearms were not interdicted. They were not stopped. Your agents allowed these firearms purchases to continue, sometimes even monitoring them in person, and within days some of these weapons were being recovered in Mexico. Despite widespread knowledge within its senior ranks that this practice was occurring, when asked on numerous occasions about the veracity of this letter, the Department has shockingly continued to stand by its false statement of February 4, 2011.
Mr. Attorney General, you have made numerous statements about Fast and Furious that have eventually been proven to be untrue. Your lack of trustworthiness while speaking about Fast and Furious has called into question your overall credibility as Attorney General. The time for deflecting blame and obstructing our investigation is over. The time has come for you to come clean to the American public about what you knew about Fast and Furious, when you knew it, and who is going to be held accountable for failing to shut down a program that has already had deadly consequences, and will likely cause more casualties for years to come.
Operation Fast and Furious was the Department's most significant gun trafficking case. It related to two of your major initiatives – destroying the Mexican cartels and reducing gun violence on both sides of the border. On your watch, it went spectacularly wrong. Whether you realize yet or not, you own Fast and Furious. It is your responsibility.
Darrell Issa
  Below: Issa holds one of the many Redacted documents from the Department of Justice
It appears the Obama Administrations definition of transparency has evolved somewhat from that of Danial Websters- JP

GOP Presidential debate on September 22, 2011
QUESTION: My question is, if you were forced to eliminate one department from the federal government, which one would you eliminate and why?

HERMAN CAIN: The first -- the first department, if I were forced to eliminate a department, I would start with the EPA and start all over. It's out of control. 
Now, I know that makes some people nervous, but the EPA has gone wild. The fact that they have a regulation that goes into effect January 1, 2012, to regulate dust says that they've gone too far.So rather than try to fix it, eliminate all of the things that they have right now and then start rebuilding a responsible EPA.

     A trap question does not have to be answered as asked. Cain's cringe inducing response is understandable considering recent history with the EPA but it shows a lack of understanding as to why Nixon created the department in the first place. I'm not a history teacher and can offer no lessons here. Suffice to say many areas of the country were a toxic mess with dead streams and rivers, chemical dumps, radioactive dirty sites (one 24 miles from where we now live) smog and acid rain. The EPA contributed greatly in turning all that around. 
    In resent years the EPA has been enlisted as a tool of the environmental movement and specifically the new and somewhat failing religion of global warming. In their rush to control.... well.... everything, the environmentalists ... through the EPA using over reaching regulation, terminally flawed and illogical scientific data and  fabricated conclusions have succeeded in severely stunting economic growth throughout the country. These are not my theories, they are decisions by Federal Judges in lawsuits brought against the EPA. If unchecked the climate control groupies may well turn America into Reagan's "Shining City Upon a Hill" but with little going for it except food stamps.
    The EPA can and needs to be fixed. "There was an old Bill Cosby skit about a kid needing his tonsils removed. The doc explained that he needed the operation because that instead of protecting him as they should, "They have joined the other side". Surgery on the EPA seems just as warranted."- JII2297  
We can no longer afford to put minnows, snails and chemistry calculations ahead of human value and economic need. If one is worried where their next meal is coming from, they are more likely to fillet that minnow... regardless of the laws on the books to protect it.- JP

Although the message from the Occupy Wall Street protesters is convoluted and many the media interview sound like Jeff Spicoli after a burn there are some worthy messages mixed in. While some denigrate the protesters and others try to shape them into Democrat votes the overall causes of the protests are a system skewed in favor of the 1%  at the expense of the other 99% and where our government sets rule and regulation from the influences of good lobbying and political favor rather than sound economic policy and it's citizens needs. I have one question for our government "are we... the 99% .. also to big to fail"?- JP 

Photos of the Week:

Image: Alexandra Knight with son Truett and gun
This photograph of Alexandra Knight with her son, Truett, appears in the book “Chicks with Guns.

A row of old tractors

File:Day 12 Occupy Wall Street September 28 2011 Shankbone 33.JPG
Occupy Wall Street

Occupy Wall Street

Friday, October 7, 2011

Report on the Nation

Unhealthy Healthcare Overhaul

      If the federal government can force it's citizens to buy health insurance with the threat of penalties and fines, what next will they force on us. Experts are lining up on the side of this mandate being unconstitutional, I hope they are right. The American people have always been a kind and caring people.... to a fault it would seem. Most would support and help pay for a program to provide healthcare for those who can't pay for it themselves. If the government could run such a program fairly, effectively and efficiently most would support it and would be willing to help pay for it. Not much chance of the government, in it's current state being up to the task, they do so little well now. Obamacare creates 1968 individual  grants of power, most to HHS. It also creates 159 new government entities to administer it. Nope... can't see anything going wrong here.- JP

HHS admitted Obamacare was “recipe For disaster” According to newly released documents, President Barack Obama's underlings -- including his Vice President -- and Democrat leaders in both houses of Congress knew that Obamacare would become a fiscally unsustainable entitlement program, but they pushed for it's passage anyway. In yet another scandal brewing within the Washington Beltway, a new federal probe reveals the administration withheld crucial information from Congress about a new health care entitlement program that was destined for fiscal trouble. 

Obama and the Democrats said just about anything to Americans to attempt to gain their support for Obamacare. When that didn't work, they pushed the legislation through and told Americans they wanted it. CLASS is supposed to provide long-term care insurance, including nursing home payments and in-home nursing care. Benefits are supposed to be funded with contributors’ premiums and not taxpayer money. However, under the current structure, it would need more enrollees (234 million) than the entire American workforce. Internal communications released this week indicate CLASS would essentially require federal subsidies or a mandate forcing all workers to pay into the government’s new program. Read more... obamacare-was-recipe-for-disaster

INSIDE WASHINGTON: 'Zombie' program cuts deficit

WASHINGTON (AP) — They're calling it the zombie in the budget.
It's a long-term care plan the Obama administration has put on hold, fearing it could go bust if actually implemented. Yet while the program exists on paper, monthly premiums the government may never collect count as reducing federal deficits.
Real or not, that's $80 billion over the next 10 years
"It's a gimmick that produces phantom savings," said Robert Bixby, executive director of the Concord Coalition, a nonpartisan group that advocates deficit control..
The program was created under President Barack Obama's health care overhaul, and arguably provided much of the 10-year, $143 billion in savings claimed under the law. But now some Capitol Hill aides have dubbed CLASS a "budget zombie." Read more...inside-washington-zombie-

 Bending Obamacare’s honesty curve downward

Growing list of health care lies plagues president’s overhaul

Illustration: Hell in a handbasket by Greg Groesch for The Washington Times  

The Obamacare house of cards is crumbling before our eyes. The Obama administration’s signature piece of legislation brings a sixth of the U.S. economy under federal control, and the writing is on the wall: Obamacare will collapse under the weight of its own false promises. The only mystery left is whether we will allow America to go down with it.
Remember when President Obama claimed over and over again that his health care plan would “bend the cost curve downward”? He even declared resolutely that he would not otherwise sign the bill. Well, add that to the growing list of Obamacare lies.

Calling a lie a lie is difficult for some people, but I cannot apologize for being blunt when America’s future is at stake on such a serious matter. At best, the only alternative is what “Tonight Show” host Jay Leno recently said of the president: “I can’t figure out if he’s the kind of guy who makes infomercials or the kind of guy who falls for infomercials.” Read more... bending obamacares honesty curve downward

Judicialwatch Obtains Obamacare Documents from HHS
If you need evidence of the turmoil created by Barack Obama’s socialist health care overhaul, you could certainly look at the myriad of legal challenges currently working their way through the courts. (A date with the Supreme Court is a certainty.) Or you could look at the massive influx of applications from unions and companies scrambling to get out from under the law’s oppressive requirements by obtaining waivers from the Obama administration.
The Obama Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently announced an arbitrary September 2011 cutoff for waiver applications, but right up to this deadline these exemptions continue to proliferate. According to The Hill, 106 new waivers were granted in July, bringing the total to 1,472 unions and companies that have been granted exemptions from Obamacare. And yet, the Obama administration continues to be super secretive regarding just how these waiver applications are evaluated.

The documents include a list of all of the labor union leaders who attended a meeting with President Obama, along with brief biographical information on each participant. The list included: Richard Trumka, President of the AFL-CIO; Andy Stern, President of the Service Employees International Union; and Jim Hoffa, President of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, among other Big Labor leaders.
What assurances did the Obama administration give to labor leaders in exchange for their support of the plan? The documents we previously uncovered suggest that the key provisions of the Obamacare law were written solely to address the concerns of union interests. (And now we see Big Labor getting 50% of the waiver haul.) Read more... http://www.judicialwatch

 Democrats resist another Obama stimulus

Even liberals aren’t in favor of tax hikes to pay for a ‘jobs’ bill

U.S. billionaire investor Warren BuffettIt’s not just the American people who are abandoning President Obama in droves. Polls show “The One” has become “Number Two” when matched up against Mr. Generic Republican. Now even Mr. Obama’s best friends are growing similarly uneasy with his policy proposals.
From the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Friday, investor Warren Buffett abandoned the Obama administration’s storyline on the “Buffett Rule.” Mr. Obama had cited the Nebraska billionaire’s bogus tale about paying a higher tax rate than his personal secretary as an excuse to hike taxes on those earning as little as $200,000 a year. Read more... democrats resist another obama stimulus

For the better part of a month the President has traveled the country (he has averaged  1 re-election fundraiser every 3 days since April) pounding his fists on his podium, scolding Republicans for putting party before country, blaming them for all this countries problems and demanding that for the good of the nation they pass in full his Jobs Plan. For most of that time Congress had yet to receive it. On October 5th Senator Mitch Mcconnell (R)offered (with bill in hand) to (as the President has repeatedly demanded) bring the bill to a vote, then and there. Senator Harry Reid (D) stopped the vote. The Presidents own party won't support his bill. He won't say a word about that though.- JP
UPDATE: OCT 7th- Last night in the Senate, Harry Reid and 50 Democrats voted to change Senate rules permitting amendments to bills called to the floor for a vote. Apparently McConnell had attached an amendment to an energy bill that the Democrats didn't want to vote on.....
The amendment called for a vote on the AMERICA WORKS ACT....aka Obama's "jobs bill".
That's right....Harry Reid not only prevented a vote on Obama's jobs bill....he changed the rules of the Senate in order to prevent the vote... And yet Obama continues to pound the podium.... blaming Republicans for holding his jobs bill and the economy  hostage. -JP

Durbin says Democrats don’t currently have the votes for Obama jobs bill

Obama on jobs bill: ‘I’m ready to sign it’

Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said, at the moment, Democrats in Congress dont have the votes to pass President Obamas jobs bill, but Durbin added that that situation would change.  
Not at the moment, I don’t think we do, but, uh, we can work on it, Durbin said, according to Chicago radio station WLS.  
There are some senators who are up for election who say I’m never gonna vote for a tax increase while I’m up for election, even on the wealthiest people. So, we’re not gonna have 100 percent of Democratic senators. That’s why it needs to be bipartisan and I hope we can find some Republicans who will join us to make it happen.Read more...democrats don't have the votes

Obama’s 'jobs' plan pushes class warfare, tax hikes

Some might say President Barack Obama is arrogant. His administration is mired in investigations over financing Fast and Furious, a government operation that funded placing weaponry in the hands of drug cartels. Obama funneled half a billion dollars to Solyndra; US taxpayers’ money evaporated when the solar energy company failed. Solyndra is a story that continues to unfold, raising serious questions about ethics in the Obama administration.

In a recent speech when he unveiled his plans for boosting the economy, Obama stridently called for Congress to “pass the bill.” Those repeated calls were a side splitter. At that point Congress hadn’t a clue what would be contained in an unwritten bill.
Of course, that didn’t stop Democrats before—they passed a healthcare bill without even reading it. Read more...class warfare

Dems Want Law To Keep Obama Records Secret

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid succeeded in passing a health care law that the majority of Americans opposed.

In an obvious effort to protect President Barack Obama, a group of congressional Democrats has introduced legislation to create an official process that will allow the commander-in-chief to keep presidential records secret after he leaves office.
Ironically, Obama revoked a similar George W. Bush order in one of his first official acts as president. In 2001 Bush penned an executive order severely limiting public access to his presidential records. Shortly after swearing in, Obama killed it as part of his much-ballyhooed commitment to government transparency. At the time, the new president claimed that he was giving the American people greater access to “historic documents.”  Read more... judicialwatch records-secret

APNewsBreak: Dems mum on Obama proposal on debt collectors pursuing money owed government

WASHINGTON — To the dismay of consumer groups and the discomfort of Democrats, President Barack Obama wants Congress to make it easier for private debt collectors to call the cellphones of consumers delinquent on student loans and other billions owed the federal government.

"Enabling robo-calls (to cellphones) is just going to lead to more harassment and abuse, and it's not going to help the government collect more money," said Lauren Saunders of the Boston-based National Consumer Law Center. "People aren't paying their student loans because they can't find a job." Read more... Obama Debt Collectors

       I have been accused more then once of being closed minded, of being unwilling to listen to the other side, to weigh the opposing view. A charge I reject in it's entirety. A lifetime of political involvement and study of our nations history has led me to this: Our founders left us an amazing gift. They gave us a form of democracy, a Republic that though by no means perfect, it is the envy of the world. . Although our system of government may now seem broken and our Republic malfunctioning. And in some respects the people serving in it make it appear somehow perverse and manipulated, mankind has yet to find a system that better serves and protects it's citizens interests. Our system still works, still functions as it has for most of it's existence. 
        I have written in the past about a choice we as a nation will soon make. It is not just the upcoming election or which party we favor or who we elect as our next president, although those are an important part. The choice we make will be in the philosophy we decide as a nation to follow. We have, throughout history struggled to pick between two very different visions for America. We have split along these visions. For the last 230+ years we have pulled and pushed, tugged and shoved and yes, even fought over which vision would win out. One vision- vision A) believes that the governments job is to guarantee some form of economic justice, to insure that everyone does well, or as well as possibly can be done. The other vision- vision B) believes in economic opportunity. This vision believes it's not the governments job to guarantee outcome, but to insure an environment that allows people the opportunity to pursue  their hopes and ambitions. Neither has moral authority, neither owns the rights to patriotism. It is not good vs. evil or right vs. wrong. It is in fact... just a choice.... a choice that we need to make, and one that needs to be made soon.

     I fear too many in this country do not appreciate the important's  and the magnitude of this decision. The solutions to our countries fiscal and social problems will come from the vision we choose. Group A) believes we need to raise revenue thru higher taxes, they believe in something they call a fair playing field. They believe in using regulation and government programs to manipulate things in our culture until these things match their determination of fair. They believe that government programs are the key to stimulating economic growth. Vision B) believes that personal responsibility, choice and competition will allow it's citizens to reach and achieve higher goals. They believe the revenue our government needs should come in part, not from higher taxes but from a growing tax base. More workers employed, more businesses started, more economic growth. Growth driven by the private sector, not the government.

Vision A) Believes employee pay and benefits are best regulated by government regulation and union inclusion. Vision B) believes that ultra low unemployment is the key to raising workers standards of living and their benefits. More employers competing for employees forces higher pay and better benefits.
      Both groups believe in safety net programs. Group A's programs have been in operation in various forms for 40+ years, you can decide for yourself if it works as you believe it should. Group B) believes in helping those who through no fault of their own need help. And they believe in helping those who try to help themselves. They believe we cannot continue programs that turn us into life long wards of the state.

     I have of course simplified somewhat, a general outline is all I can offer in one sitting, but the points... none the less are valid, and the issues real. Regardless of the direction we choose, austerity measures are coming. We are in to deep to get out without some pain and some shared sacrifice. Well, shared by some anyway. Fedgov spends about 300 billion each month, of that 120 billion is borrowed. This month, next month and month after month Fedgov will borrow. Our dept grows and so does the interest on that dept. Month after month the interest we must pay takes a larger percentage of our spending.. We now borrow to pay interest on money we already borrowed. According to the GAO (Government Accountability Office) if these trends continue, by 2021 Social Security, Medicare and the interest on the dept will take up 98% of our yearly budget... What a stinking shit pile we are in. This is not hyperbole, this is not propaganda from some conservative strategy session. It is mathematical certainty. It is fundamental economic reality that we simply cannot continue without a re-think of our direction.

     It doesn't matter who you are, where your from, your background, your income level or anything else, borrowing 120 billion a month is more than to much, it is insulting and absurd and a razor blade to the wrist of every american.

     So... it is up to you, which vision will you choose? You have some time to decide, but not much. It will take several elections to commit the nation to change, but we need to start soon. I believe we will need to choose one or the other... A or B. We can no longer afford for them to co-exist. The middle ground only ensures failure. Take some time, think carefully and choose wisely.- JP