More Opinion by The Springboard

THE UPRISING OF THE AMERICAN PARTY "Clearly the voters are engaged right now, at least for sure on the republican side, and what they have concluded is that the republican party has not done their job. Thus, Donald Trump gets their vote."

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Forget About The Mosque

That's my plain and simple message to Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf. Just simply forget about the Mosque. It is as clear as the nose on my face, as it is equally clear on the faces of better than 70% of the rest of Americans who oppose the proposed Mosque being built so near to Ground Zero, that this Mosque has not a thing to do with building any bridges between Muslims and Christians (it is not accomplishing anything remotely resembling that), and certainly it is not accomplishing any bridge building when it comes to American's overall perception of Muslims. If it is accomplishing anything at all, it's causing more dissent and mistrust.

Part of this stems from additional comments by the Imam that simply do not make sense, that are only going to make matters worse for him, his building, and his bridge. Such as making the remark that American's thinking that Ground Zero is hallowed ground is misguided. False. To Americans that ground is sacred, and for obvious reasons which it is clear the Imam has no understanding of. It also says loud and clear, in my eyes, that he doesn't have any real connection to America, American culture, nor American values—yet he calls himself an American?

Of course, you can add on the recent uncoverings of the Imam's ties with this Khan guy, who is not embarrassed at all about the fact that he believes 911 was an inside job.

My thinking is this. I'm not saying to the Imam don't build nothing. Just don't build a Mosque. Don't even give it a name like Muslim Cultural Center. If you want to build something, including a bridge, then why not build an American memorial and cultural center which honors the victims of 911, and that is non-denominational? That's something I think we could all live with. That is something which would certainly clear the air about what the Imam's intentions are. It certainly would send a message to any Jihadists out there who may wish to correlate this Mosque so near to Ground Zero with Islamic victory against the infidel Americans.

There is dirt here. And I'm not just talking about the dirt on the ground. There's dirt on the Imam. There's dirt on his cohorts. Certainly there will be dirt on his financiers in the deal. And that's part of the problem for Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf as well and his bridge. When 70% of the population are against the Mosque, you better believe there will be a very large majority of those people ready with shovels to dig that dirt up and lay it all out on the table for everyone to see. It's happening already, and it will only get worse.

Mr. Rauf, just forget about the Mosque. You'll be happy you did. Build something, my man. Anything really. Just not a Mosque.

Read more by Springboard on HubPages:

Saturday, September 11, 2010

QURAN BURNING IS MORE IGNORANCE


The burning of the Quran by a Florida pastor sort of reminds me of one of those TV infomercials where the host yells out to the eager, waiting audience, "But wait! There's More!" Ignorance, that is. That's what we're getting more of with this deal. Ignorance.

I spoke very loud and clear about the Mosque being built so near to Ground Zero being a very bad idea. I listened to all of the arguments that the proponents of the Mosque made about rights and the Constitution. I very quickly conceded that if Imam Rauf wants to build a Mosque anywhere he wants to, he most surely can. The Constitution clearly says so, and I don't dispute that fact one iota. The question for me was and is, if the vast majority of the American people are opposed to the building of the Mosque, and it is the desire of the builder to create a bridge between the Muslims and the rest of America, wouldn't it be the prudent thing to do to not build the Mosque?

Bridges aren't built by pissing off everyone on the bridge.

And what of this burning of the Quran? Sure, the pastor has every right in the world to light the thing on fire and chant whatever things he wants to chant while doing it. But should he do it? Is it the best judgement on his part? Is it the prudent thing to do? In this case do two wrongs make a right?

I think not.

I put the burning of the Quran in the very same light that I put the building of the Mosque. Both are bad ideas, and I think they are both bad ideas for very obvious reasons. The ignorance of both the Florida pastor and the New York Imam is as clear as the nose on my face.

READ MORE OF SPRINGBOARD ON HUBPAGES:
The Mosque Is Not About Religious Freedom
From Comments:Everything about this attack was based on the Muslim faith, in the name of Allah, and in the cause of Islamic Jihad...if you want to build an AMERICAN non-denominational center of worship and prayer, go for it. A Mosque is about victory plain and simple. A bridge, by the way, travels in both directions. A Mosque only travels in one.
It's Who You Know, And Who You Blow
From Comments:Mr. Rockefeller Sr. CAN look down at Jr. and say, "Junior, this here money is mine. This here acheivement is through my effort. My smarts. My guts. I will not give you the fruits of my efforts and you should not expect that I offer them to you. You CAN be a witness to my acheivement, and you CAN be inspired by the knowledge that we live in a world where IF you work as hard as I did, and do your very best as I did, that while you still may not acheive to the exact level that I did, that you will have at least had the exact opportunity that I did." Conceptually, if you succeed, you succeed on your own because you are meant to. And if you fail, you do that on your own as well for the same reason.
Climate Change and the Issue of the Falling Sky
From Comments:Curbing pollution and being responsible citizens of the earth is a very important thing. I do believe that we're doing plenty to hurt at least the ecosystem, and it could have a profound impact on even our own lives. But the gloom and doom stuff is just a lot of focus on hocus pocus and I think it's simply the wrong way to approach the underlying issue of pollution and the effects it could have on the environment.





Saturday, August 14, 2010

President Obama Is Not My President

On nearly all of the issues, I strongly disagree with President Obama. That said, I'd like to think I've also been fair to him when I felt it was necessary to do so. I made one point very clear in a recent hub I wrote, "Conservatives Should Not Be Bashers," that reality is key. Fairness is essential. Bashing is pointless. I was speaking mainly on the BP oil spill and how Americans seemed to be of the idea that the president had a magic wand somewhere he could wave and make the whole disaster disappear.

He didn't, and he couldn't.

In the hub, I pointed out that it was unfair to blame former President Bush for all of the woes of hurricane Katrina just the same as it was unfair to blame President Obama for all of the woes of the BP oil spill. Bush didn't get it all wrong when it came to the Katrina situation, though he made many mistakes. But neither did President Obama get it all wrong when it came to the oil spill. And yes, I think we can all agree he made many mistakes.

The point is that regardless of who is in the White House, and regardless what my political leanings happen to be, I do my best to view each issue on the merits. It is not impossible, in my mind, for a democrat to be right any more than it is not impossible for a republican to be wrong.

The recent announcement by President Obama that he supports the mosque at Ground Zero being built, however, is something I simply cannot live with. For me, it's the last straw. It is a huge insult to the people of this country, the people who died on September 11, 2001, and I can't for the life of me understand how this could be acceptable to anyone. Especially the President of the United States.

In case anyone is not clear on the matter, our country was attacked by radical Islamic terrorists on September 11, 2001. They flew airliners into the World Trade Center. They flew an airline into the Pentagon. And had they succeeded, United Airlines flight 93 would likely have crashed into the White House. This was clearly an act of war, irregardless whether or not it was a sovereign nation who flew those planes into our buildings or the 19 terrorists who did.

The idea that any sitting president would not see the insensitive nature of building a mosque on what is now hallowed ground in this country is deplorable. The fact that President Obama did not instead voice outrage for even the suggestion that we build a mosque at Ground Zero is almost unbelievable.

It isn't enough apparently, that throughout this president's time in office he has repeatedly bowed to the world, and apologized for this great land. It isn't enough that Michelle Obama made comments before President Obama was sworn in that she wasn't proud of her country. Now he has quite literally turned his back on the 2,976 Americans who lost their lives on that awful morning, and has as well turned his back on the 4,414 American soldiers who have died in Iraq. The president has turned his back on the 1,149 Anericans who have died in Afghanistan.

People have called for the impeachment of President Obama many times over the last nearly two years of his presidency, and I've called them off-base and out of line. I've defended that while I disagree with the president and his policies, I still support the office, and respect the office, and fully realize that irregardless of my opinion, President Obama is still the president. You could have hated former President Bush to the core, but he was still the president.

My opinion has changed. I now feel that President Obama is not fit to be president. He has simply turned his back on this country one time too many, and honoring—for whatever purpose—a religious group who is in any way connected to the terrorist group that launched an attack against the United States is abhorrent, and an impossible pill to swallow. Never before have I seen a president who is as unpresidential as President Obama is. Never before did I ever think that we would see the day that a sitting president would honor our enemies, who would not stand tall in the face of this mosque being built and say clearly to Al Qaeda and the Muslim community, "This is not a war against Islam. This is a war against radical Islam. This is not a war against a people. This is a war against terrorists. This mosque will not be built, and will not in any way serve as a symbol of victory for our enemies. Not in my country. Not on my watch."

Mr. President, if you thought that Guantanamo Bay was a recruitment tool for terrorists, what exactly do you think a mosque being built in the very place where Muslim terrorists attacked our country will serve as?

President Obama is not my president. I cannot, and will not support him. This is just too big to ignore. For the good of this country, it is my firm hope that the rest of America cannot accept this either. It is my opinion the president should resign. He is clearly a traitor, and not patriotic as a president of our nation should be. I'll go as far as to say that President Obama is a disgrace to the office, and a disgrace to the United States of America.




More by Springboard:

Show Me Yours, And I'll Show You Mine
You heard me correctly. That's right. I want to see what you've got. Mr. Geithner, Mr. Kerry, and Mr. Rangel. If you show me yours, I'll gladly show you mine. The money, that is, of course. More specifically, the money I have to pay in taxes to my government.
If It Quacks Like A Duck...
I am really beginning to hate the word "fee." I think it's a word that has all too quickly become something used in the business world in the place of the term price increase, in much the same way that the tax man has seen fit to use the word in the place of the term, new taxes.

Friday, August 6, 2010

I'll Show You Mine If You Show Me Yours

The title I chose for a recent hub I wrote about tax cheats in government wasn't exactly that phrase. But it's as close as you can get to, "Show Me Yours, And I'll Show You Mine," without running into duplication problems. The thing I found funny was the sudden surge in my hit-rate on this hub in particular. Seems that when you offer up such a title, people are bound to be looking for...

Well, let's just say, something else.

The title alone bringing unsuspecting seekers of that something else doesn't necessarily translate into any additional click-throughs on the Google Adsense part (at least it hasn't yet), but it is still an interesting thing to me. Perhaps as well as lesson and an exercise?

I say the latter because what if I did provide just a little subtlety of the something else. How could that translate into more traffic and a higher click-through rate? I've seen before where a provocative title can bring in some additional readers (ar at least lookers). But this one surging in particular is more interesting as a whole.

I just hope the actual subject matter wasn't too disappointing. I hate to leave anyone feeling let down.



Tuesday, July 27, 2010

CUT CEO PAY, NOT WORKERS

I'm not going to say that there aren't times when job cuts are a necessity. Labor is costly to any business, even if that labor is also at the heart of what drives that business forward—you need people to execute the ideas and satisfy the customers. And I'll even concede that a recent question that was posed on CNBC.COM regarding whether or not U.S. companies should follow along with a trend in Germany where companies there are opting to reduce worker hours rather than cut jobs altogether is certainly a better choice, perhaps, than tossing workers out on their hindquarters. People who have no work, and consequently not much money to spend will not be any help to a lagging economy, especially if the economy is largely driven by consumerism such as ours is.

But here's one thing I don't hear that I think might also help to ease the strain a bit as well. That is; reducing CEO compensation and executive pay packages. To me, this would seem to be a huge and behemoth area where we could make some very deep and serious cuts. It's great to earn multi-million dollar salaries and bonus packages when the economy is booming and the company's bottom line is bursting with new money. But if that's not the case, then all employees need to be considered when cuts are to be made.

CEO's are employees.

The bottom rung of the ladder is typically the first one who gets affected, and rarely, if ever, does the top give back some of its fruits. I think rather than cut back hours, or cut jobs, some of these CEO's need to use some of their business sense and make tougher choices to save jobs. Streamline the business first. Cut their own exorbitant salaries and bonuses first. Then look to the bottom where the impact of cuts will be hardest felt. Granted, the CEO's duty is not to the workers, necessarily, but to the shareholders. Still, shareholders will not receive the real value of the investment they've made if the side of the company (the workers) who will execute the real core of the business are not happy, or if they feel slighted. And shouldn't we all understand as shareholders that our stock prices will not rise, and the goods our companies sell will not be sold if everyone is standing in the bread line rather than on the production line?

The American worker is not the bad guy.

READ MORE BY SPRINGBOARD:

American Workers Should Not Get The Shaft
The Tony Hayward Fail

USA Made Clothing by All American Clothing

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Lincoln MKZ Hybrid Will Not Be More


Gas prices are still not exactly cheap, especially if you still happen to be driving a larger vehicle that sucks up 20 or less miles per gallon or so. But we're certainly a long way from the prospect of potentially seeing $5 per gallon. Still, oil is something I think we can all agree on that we need to reduce our dependence on. Not just for reasons of national security, but also for the environment. That's why hybrid cars, which nearly every automaker now offers, are something to think about when you are in the process of considering your next automobile purchase.

I've said before that if we truly want hybrid cars to have a real shot, and if we want them to truly demonstrate what the demand for these cars are, we are going to have to offer them without the premium price that usually goes along with them. Especially in an economy such as we are in right now, people who are in a position to buy a new car very much do take into consideration the very much higher prices attached to these hybrid cars. On most models that premium is about $8,000-$12,000. Few people want to shell out more money than they have to when there's still quite a lot of shaky ground in the economy. Even if it's likely that over the long run, the additional miles per gallon may well pay for the premium in having to buy less gas overall.

That's why I'm happy to hear Ford will make its Lincoln MKZ hybrid sedan available without the extra cost. I say bravo zulu to Ford Motor Company for taking environmental concerns seriously, and for making an honest commitment to the reduction of oil usage, and improving fuel economy—which is what offering a model for the same price actually suggests they are doing. It's a much easier decision for one to make, "Do I buy the hybrid or the gas-powered version?" when the price tag for the two cars is exactly the same. And I'm inclined to believe Ford Motor Company has a hunch that without the price premium, most buyers will probably opt for the hybrid version.

This makes sense for another reason. Over time, the more demand there is for the hybrid technology, the less this technology will cost, and Ford will have a hand in increasing that demand and driving down that cost. Eventually, they may be able to offer similar choices in their cheaper models as that cost comes down. It's better than an incentive.

By the way, I should also point out this is just one more reason to own Ford stock. I've been recommending this as a buy for quite some time, and I think it is absolutely a buy.

Disclaimer: Jim Bauer currently owns shares in Ford Motor Company (F) stock.

MORE READING:


Monday, July 19, 2010

WHO'S GOT THE AMERICAN WORKER'S BACK?


Partisanship is something that really gets under my skin. To me, you can be a republican and agree with a democrat and vice versa. You can be against 99 out of 100 policies that Barack Obama supports, but still support one. Granted, partisanship is played out in exactly the same way on both sides of the aisle, so if George Bush were still the president you could put his name in place of Barack Obama's name and have the same argument. Democrats can support one out of 100 policies that Bush supports.

It's not even a tall order.

The latest debacle comes out of this whole debate as to whether or not we (the republicans) should allow more pork barrell spending by already out of control spending democrats in order to ensure that the hard working Americans who are currently unemployed—thanks to the still high rate of unemployment, which is thanks to the anti-business Obama administration and all of his democratic cronies—don't have their unemployment insurance benefits stopped.

Sure. Spending is a serious issue. It's way out of control. At some point in the very near future we are going to have to take drastic and serious measures to curtail spending at every turn. Even democrat Erskine Bowles, on the debt commission, has said we will have grave consequences if we do not do something soon. But not this very moment. Not on the backs of the American worker who is in need of his benefits right now. We can play politics later. But now is the time to give the unemployed worker at least his benefits.

The thing here is that of course the democrats want to make the republicans look bad by blaming them for the lack of benefits arriving in the mail. Even my democrat cousin snidely told me on the phone, "Yeah, how about your republicans on the workers?" So, the blame is landing squarely on the republicans so long as no benefits are coming. And yes. I don't think there is any disputing that there are things the democrats included in this bill that would turn republicans heads on the real underyling issue.

But the republicans are essentially doing exactly the same thing. That is, they are trying to make the democrats look bad by saying, "It's not our fault your benefits have stopped. The democrats are to blame for putting too much pork into the bill that would have allowed your benefits."

We have to put this all into the proper perspective. This is posturing. Spending is an issue now? After we've dished out trillions of dollars in bailout monies to AIG? To Citibank? To General Motors? We want to talk about reigning in spending now? Let me just point out that the amount of money, pork included, we're talking about literally pales in comparison to the amount of money we've already laid out. And, add in the thought that there is still hundreds of billions of dollars of already approved, unspent stimulus dollars the president said we could spend any way we want to—we could get this done. We could get these benefits done.

It's all partisan politics. It's game playing. It's setting the stage for issues to come to the fore for the mid-term elections. It's a game that aims to shift anger at the democrats to anger at the republicans.

The republicans are letting the democrats get away with it.

The fact is that these folks who recieve unemployment benefits are the very same people who worked and paid taxes to pay for the bailout. They paid taxes into the federal system that will pay for the extension of benefits. They paid the taxes which paid for people to get a credit to buy a new car, or buy their first home. They are out of work largely not by their own design, but rather as a result of the shenanigans of their government and some of the largest corporations in the world.

The last people that should be left out are them. The hard-working, tax paying American worker who is right now out of work. The last people who should be allowing this are the republican party—truly the party of the American worker thanks to its pro-business stance. Voting against this bill is a vote against the American worker for whatever reason.

As for the partisanship? Well, it's just one more example that on either side, democrat or republican, they really have no clue what the average American is having to go through right now. And besides that, think about how much debate went into deciding over the last pay raises that went through Congress and the Senate. It was a very quick vote with not much debate at all, if any at all. Spending wasn't an issue there, was it?

At every turn the American worker is simply being told, "You're going to have to suck it up." It looks to me right now that there is no one who has the American worker's back. Not the democrats. And sadly, not the republicans either.


More great reading:
American Workers Should Not Get The Shaft
It happens now and again that I find myself on the opposite side of the fence of fellow republicans. In the case of the question of whether or not we should be extending unemployment benefits, I'm on the side of the fence that says we most certainly should. With unemployment numbers still around 9.5%, there are a lot of people who are looking for work. In the meantime, getting a small pittance, which is essentially what unemployment benefits are, is helpful to simply stay above water as much as possible...
Our Liar-in-Chief is at it Again!
I just watched King Teleprompter's latest Rose Garden speech in which he continued to show his ignorance and he spewed even more of his all-too-common lies. In fact, he was accompanied by three "average" Americans who are unemployed and have been searching, fruitlessly, for a new job...

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Build The Fence


It's not that I'm anti-social. Well, at least I'm not entirely anti-social. But the fact is that I do value my privacy very much.


My wife and I have lived in our current house for the past three years, and on the south side there is no privacy fence. We have one on the north side that was there when we moved in. I'm not sure exactly why the previous owners never put it up on both sides. But there you have it. That's the way it is.


The thing is I'd very much like to complete the fence on the south side of the house. But it's a bit of a delicate thing, is it not? I mean, I don't want to give the impression to the neighbors that we don't like them. I don't want to be considered the jerk on the block. At the same time I have to admit to not really enjoying the full potential of my own backyard. It's not like we live in a community where the houses are far apart. In our area, houses are fairly closely spaced.


And the fact is they have kids. Not that I have anything against kids. But they have 4 of them, and their mother is over there all the time. She's a bit of a talker, and you know, sometimes I just have things to do. Sometimes I don't want to talk. Sometimes I don't want to be bothered by their kids.


Time is precious. So is privacy. But how do you put up a privacy fence without offending anyone? I've thought about mentioning that we'd like to put one up. I've thought about asking if they'd mind. I've thought about telling them it's not to avoid them (even though it partly is). Still, I fear it may well be construed in a bad way.


Then again, perhaps they'd love to have a fence there as well.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Why Such A Lack Of Concern Over Black Panthers?

I don't want to see race relations in this country get any worse than they may be already. Still, I have to question why on earth the justice department would dismiss the case of the Black Panthers standing outside a polling area during the last presidential election with sticks in their hands? Not enough evidence, they said? It looks clear to me, watching the video, that there was a clear intent to invoke fear in potential white voters headed to the polls. One of the men apparently even made the comment, "Finally the white man will know what it feels like to be ruled by the black man."

That's about as racist a statement as one can be, right?

The Adams accusation notwithstanding—it's one hell of a revelation if it's true, is it not?

And imagine, for a moment, what the reaction would have been had this been two members of the Ku Klux Klan outside that polling area waving sticks at potential black voters who they assumed would probably vote for Obama. This would have opened wide a major case in this country, and perhaps would even have sparked riots or otherwise.

Let's just be sure in saying that such a thing would not have gone over well at all.

And you have to wonder as well just where the Obama administration is at with regard to race, or certainly where Eric Holder is with regard to race when you think about the Adams accusation and how quick President Obama was to react to a black professor when he was challenged by police outside his home.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

We Do Have Term Limits in the USA


Term limits. It's a thing I think most Americans would say they are for. No one really thinks we should necessarily have career politicians in our Congressional ranks. Certainly any one person having too much power is something that we all have great concern about—it's why we limit the number of terms a person can serve as president.

We don't want dictators. We want leaders.

Of course there's a lot more chatter these days about term limits. The whole third party movement thing is helping to fuel this. The fact that so many democrats are simply not listening to the American people is helping to fuel this. And while we're at it, let me just make myself clear that I am not suggesting that the vast majority of republicans necessarily have it right either. Their ears are slammed shut in many ways as well.

We're tired of the status quo. That much is clear. But here's my thing. We don't need Congress to come up with a bill that establishes term limits. This doesn't have to be a law. Because we already have term limits in the USA. It's called our vote.

Look, the fact is we have to hold our elected officials responsible for their actions, or their inactions for that matter. We cannot simply keep on voting these fools back in and then complain they've been there too long. If we don't like what these guys are doing, we send them home. We put in new faces. We change the landscape.

Part of the reason most of these guys don't deliver on their campaign promises, and part of the reason they albeit shut out the voice of the American people is because they have no fear of reprisal. They don't feel that the American people are going to kick them out of their offices.

If we're not satisfied with what our elected officials are doing, rather than complain about it, I say we just vote them out. Two years. One shot. You get it right or you're out. That's your term limit. The American people will decide.

MORE BY SPRINGBOARD:

There Are No Rights For Illegal Immigrants


One person writes;

"I say all humans—and the operative word is humans—should be able to have access to education. Only through education can we help fix problems in our society. Out of state students are paying higher out of state tuition because they chose to leave their state. Most of the illegal immigrant students had no choice in the matter of entering the United States. I suggest you educate your readers and not cause further frustration amongst people."

This comment came at the heels of someone who made the suggestion that if you are an illegal immigrant, you should not have access to any benefits. A statement which I happen to agree with.

There is no question that we are all human on this planet. We all have certain rights. Those rights, of course, differ from country to country, and even change a little bit depending on the religious or social cultures. But we all most certainly do have basic human rights.

The question is not about whether or not we are human. The question is not whether or not we have rights. In the United States it is undeniable what our rights are, and what benefits we are entitled to enjoy. These are for United States citizens, however, and that's where we need to make the distinction. Everyone includes people who were either born in the United States, or who have legally come here.

The thing we have to keep in mind is that these people are here illegally. That's key. They have broken the law. Perhaps the word "criminal" is a bit harsh. If I speed and break the law, I don't consider myself a criminal. But clearly a law has been broken for which there is a consequence.

It is for this very reason that laws have been broken in order to get here that illegal immigrants entering our country have no entitlement to any benefits whatsoever, which mind you, are paid for by hard-working American taxpayers. Education, to speak specifically on the argument made by the commenter, is paid for not only by hard-working American's taxes, but by American homeowners. The cost of education is already steep, and homeowners are taking it in the seat of their pants enough as it is. Now you want my taxes to cover the kids of illegal immigrants too?

Education is important. Every country should focus on education as the most basic foundation for its future successes. You need a country of citizens who are smart enough to advance your country in technology, medicine, productivity, and whatever else.

But that should be limited to your own legal citizens.

To do anything else would be akin to opening up the doors of every Wal-Mart in the country and declaring that everything in the stores is free. Maybe it's a ridiculous analogy. But why? Clearly there would be nothing left on the shelves. The stores would all be cleaned out. People would drive for miles to get to their nearest Wal-Mart and loot the stores unfettered.

Ridiculous? Yes. I'm definitely agreeing with that. Wal-Mart would never do that, and the reason is pretty obvious. It doesn't make any damn sense.
But this is exactly the message we send to people who wish to cross our borders illegally. Come on over. Come on in. Everything in America is free for the taking. We, the hard-working people of America wish for you to come on across our borders, bring your family and children—hell, bring your grandparents too—and loot us. How you get here doesn't matter. What country you come from doesn't matter. Come by boat. Come by plane. Toss a ladder up against our border's walls and climb right on over, we may even help you get down on the other side by putting up our own ladder for you to climb down. It's going to be a great party and everyone is invited.

Well, everyone except for the Americans. They will have to work. There are taxes to be paid for all of these wonderful benefits that will be given away for free.

MORE OPINION BY SPRINGBOARD:

It's Not Just About Illegal Immigration Anymore
"The situation on our borders with Mexico is yet another glaring example of the absolute idiocy, and incompetence of the Obama administration. The president has now been given every reason to clamp down on illegal immigration, and especially to send a clear message to the Mexican drug cartels, that if they carry out their illegal activities on United States soil, we will act accordingly..."

Friday, July 2, 2010

Peggy West Says Arizona Doesn't Border Mexico



It's bad enough that Milwaukee County has been onboard with plans to boycott Arizona over this whole immigration law debate, something that definitely irks me in and of itself. But when Peggy West, a democrat who serves as a county supervisor for the 12th district, argued that Arizona is not a state that borders Mexico, it makes you raise your brow a little bit.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel columnist Jim Stingl gave her a pass by saying, "Lucky the rest of us never made a mistake." But the bigger problem here is that when you are arguing a bill, or making an argument for or against a bill, or making decisions as to whether or not you want to be for or against a bill, you ought be able to at least understand all of the aspects regarding the bill—or whether or not you want your county to do business with Arizona.

Like whether or not Arizona borders Mexico when the bill has to do with enforcing immigration law, which would be a greater issue for a border state than for a non-border state. Forget that no one at the top echelon even read the bill in the beginning before they commented on it, including the president himself—all democrats oddly enough.

Look, I can fully understand if someone has not looked at a map in a little while. Exactly where a particular state is might be a little bit elusive. Still, when it is as hot button a topic as the Arizona immigration bill is, and when it is something you are going to speak on, you should at least come to the podium informed. If you are going to be making decisions about anything regarding Arizona, in this particular case where Arizona is located is certainly a factor to consider.

Yes. Jim Stingle is right. We all have made mistakes. We all have misspoke. But when it comes to matters of importance, and when it comes to people in power to make decisions that influence our lives, it's not just about misspeaking. It's about not knowing what it is, exactly, that you are deciding on, nor the factors that should contribute to a good decision.

You're just governing then, by the seat of your pants and making guesses about things you know nothing about that ultimately affect us all.




Read On:

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

President Obama Firing of McChrystal The Right Choice

When a shoe was thrown at former President Bush, I thought it was an outrageous event. I even scoffed a little bit when many Americans found it more humorous than insulting. Of course, the event did have funny undertone to it. The trouble for me was that the whole event should have also caused a great deal of disconcertment for the fact that it wasn't just President Bush who had a shoe thrown at him—the very office of the President of the United States had been disrespected.

The office still commands our respect as Americans, regardless of who sits in it.

With that in mind, I think the recent firing of Gen. McChrystal over comments he made to a Rolling Stone reporter is the right thing to do, despite whether or not Gen. McChrystal also happens to be the right man for the job in Afghanistan.

President Obama, love him or hate him, is the president. He is the Commander-In-Chief of our armed forces, and as such, the military has a duty to carry out the orders of the president, and to respect the office of the president. However unfortunate the timing may well be, the fact remains that a sitting general cannot publicly speak out against the president.

Granted, I've heard quite a few people remark, "He was just speaking his mind." And that is most certainly true. Still, what is said behind closed doors is one thing. To go public with remarks against the president or his administration is an absolute can't do.

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THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT IS RUN BY IDIOTS


The Obama administration and all of its cronies are a lot that never cease to cause me to scratch and my head and utter, "huh?" The suing of Arizona over its immigration law is just another one of those occassions. I just don't get it. We have an epidemic problem in this country with illegal immigrants entering, and there are even parts of Arizona where Americans are asked to refrain from visiting due to high incidence of Mexican border crossing and drug activity.

Where does it end, I wonder? Isn't the government, isn't the president, supposed to be in the business of protecting America and her citizens?

The fact that this is not what's happening just confirms my thinking that the federal government is run by idiots. There can be no other explanation for what they are doing. With such problems the federal government should be applauding Jan Brewer and Arizona for doing what the feds ought to be able to do. Not suing them.

Furthermore, I hope that the courts at least affirm once and for all that the Arizona law practically mirrors the federal law already on the books. Wouldn't it be just perfect if the judge looked at Holder and said, "If you are going to sue Arizona, you may as well sue yourself. The Arizona law is nearly a Xerox copy."

As for Mexico getting in on the action and taking up issue with Arizona, what business does Mexico have dealing with immigration issues in the United States. Especially when Mexico is a big part of the problem?

On this issue, along with so many others, there is simply no leadership here. Nor is there any common sense. It's something we cannot hope for so long as Barack Obama is the president. The only hope we have until 2012 at this point, is that we can change the power in both the House and the Senate via the mid-term elections, and put an effective stop on any more nonsense by this crazy administration's antics.

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Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Buffet At The Wynn in Las Vegas


I'll admit that the buffet at the Wynn in Las Vegas, Nevada is a bit pricey at nearly $40. Though, I have to say it is one of the better buffets I have had to date. If you happen to be visiting in Las Vegas, a trip to the Wynn for their buffet is a must-do to be sure.


Each station was a practical gourmet lover's dream. The buffet had everything. Red snapper, mahi mahi tuna, salmon, crab legs, peeled, ready to eat shrimp. There were lamb chops, cooked the way you like them, and prime rib that was ever so tender and juicy. Braised lamb, braised veal, fabulous thinly cut pork chops that were just amazing.


Even the vegetables were to die for. Specifically, the grilled asparagus was absolutely mouth-watering and fantastic. And of course, the waitstaff was very helpful, attentive and courteous as well. I don't usually generally feel a need to tip at a buffet, but the service here was exemplary to be sure.


The casino at the Wynn is beautiful as well, though for me, gambling there was not something I was entirely interested in. Call me cheap, but I like an abundance of penny slots. I'm not in Las Vegas to make money, I'm just there to have fun, and the machines at the Wynn seem to take money a bit more quickly than the other casinos, and they have less penny slots.


All in all an experience well worth it at the Wynn.



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Wednesday, June 9, 2010

American Flag Should Be Made in America


It's not a very big request is it? I mean, the American flag is our symbol. It stands for everything we stand for as a country. It seems to me that to ask that at least to have the American flag proudly made in the U.S.A. is a very small request indeed.

Oh, I get it's about money. And I understand that there are a ton of people who are going to disagree with me on the grounds that globalization is as much a part of America as perhaps apple pie is.

Still, with unemployment still at such high levels, I've said it a thousand times we need something here in this country. An American flag that proudly waves, proudly made here on our soil? Worth gold if you ask me.

It's not just about protectionism really. It's not about free markets and globalization. It's about American pride. It's about American patriotism. Nothing pains me more to see those beautiful red, white, and blue stars and stripes, and then see the words Made in China.

Call me anal retentive. It's okay. As I said in my blog about onion prices, I've been called that before. It's no sweat off my back. I'll not shed a single tear.

But neither will I buy a flag that is not made here if I can help it.

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Wednesday, June 2, 2010

What Happened To Onion Prices?


It seems like a silly thing to write a blog about, but as a guy who absolutely loves his onions, when the prices for onions have nearly doubled in the last month or so, this just really gets my goat. I don't know about how things go in your house, but in my house? Onions are a staple. I use onions in nearly every single dish I cook. I use onions on my sandwiches, and onions go in my salad as well.


Still, I also happen to be one of those guys who watches prices very carefully. Call me anal retentive, I don't care. It wouldn't be the first time I've been called that. And in watching those prices I also have set prices in my head for how much I'm ultimately willing to pay for an item.


Pork, for example, stands around under $2 a pound. Regular beef stuff (unless we're talking about steak or something like that) I'll fork over no more than $3 a pound. I'm a sale stocker too. When things go on sale, so long as it's not something sure to perish in any short period of time, I scoop it up right quick, and in whatever quantity I can. Especially if it happens to be an item I use a lot of.


And when prices bump up above what I'm ultimately willing to pay for them I stop buying them. I boycott them. Sometimes painfully so. In the case of the onion situation, I've not been able to outright stop using them...


But I sure do buy them in much smaller quantities, and I have avoided using them in all of my dishes.


So adamant am I on this type of thing that I once went without ground beef for nearly two years. At the time it went for around 99 cents per pound—and was at least on sale for that price nearly all the time. When it bumped up to $1.19 I said no thanks to it. Then it bumped up to $1.39, and soon thereafter $1.59. I refused to buy it. I've since changed my price to around $1.79-$1.99 depending on whether it is ground chuck, or ground round, or ground beef.


I wonder sometimes if they get it. The marketers? Do they get it? Am I the only one who changes his buying habits according to the price? I mean, in this case I am sure there is something that has happened to have caused the onion prices to have doubled. But still. Do they get that I'm buying less? Will this help drive the prices down? Will onions ever go back to their old prices?


Or will I have to wait two years before I break down and change my price threshold?

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Birther Argument Will Bear No Fruit


Amazingly, this is an argument that still continues on. There are still plenty of folks pondering the question as to whether or not President Obama was born here in the United States—questioning whether he's even eligible to be the president.


It is an argument that no doubt will find its way into the campaign circles by some. I think the entire birther argument, however, is one that will bear no fruit.


Look, I fully grasp the importance of the "why" for some people. The position of the president is no small matter. This is arguably the most powerful position in the entire world. Still, in the grander scheme, as things stand right now, I think the question has about as much merit as the question that was posed as to whether or not George W. Bush was really the president based on the election, and the fact that the courts ultimately made the final decision.


Whether we love it or hate it, President Obama is the president of the United States. So was Bush. So, rather than focus on the birther argument, we need to focus on the issues.


There is the thought that some pose that perhaps the White House is trying to hide something. A lot of documents and other things have been sealed. True enough. Why would the Obama administration want to keep the records sealed? Because it means if we are talking about the question of where the president was born, we won't be talking about the issues that very much need to be at the fore of every campaign discussion we have. Make no mistake, those who cite the birther argument will very quickly be labeled wack-jobs, and guess what? That will stick before anything else does.


That will bear fruit for the democrats. That will bear fruit for the Obama administration's campaign to remain in office in 2012.


I want to be very clear about this. The birther question is one for history to take a look at. It has no place in the upcoming debates. Nor does it have any real basis for discussion in my opinion. And again, it will absolutely detract from the real issues that plague us.


We've frankly got much bigger fish to fry if you ask me.


If you want Barack Obama back in office in 2012, make the birther argument the top issue in the campaign. He'll win. I guarantee it. Focus on the issues of his presidency, and he'll be out. Mark my words.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

25,000 More People Out of Work Last Week


I think it's terrible that the jobless numbers rose by the largest amount in over 3 months. Still, I think we have to get it into our mindsets that this is going to happen. We're letting these numbers rip the stock market to shreds, and we're acting surprised when we see that people are still having difficulty finding and keeping work. Companies are not hiring, in fact they are firing.

This is the reality. No news here.

We're not out of the woods yet. We're not going to be out of the woods for a long time to come. Things simply don't happen lickity-split. We have to have patience and sensibility with regard to this situation. Until people have a sense of security about where their next dollar is going to come from, there is going to be a holding back from spending. That's going to curtail demand. And that curtailed demand is going to put pressure on companies who may want to hire more workers.

You can't do it, and they are not going to do it (that is, hire workers) if customers aren't buying their products or services.

Unemployment numbers are abysmal. I don't like them anymore than the next guy. But patience, I think, is in order here. And again, sensibility. We can't keep reacting to the news like it's news. And by the way, the only reason the numbers improved over the last three months or so was because of the hired census workers. That was at least a large part of it.

So, weren't we simply ripe for a little setback? Like what's going on in the stock market right now. Weren't we simply ripe for that too?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Grandview Resort Las Vegas


I don't mind a sales pitch. I understand a little bit about marketing. I also follow business, and I know how important it is to capture the attentions of potential customers. After all, no business could ever survive without its customers.
Still, there is a fine line, I think, between marketing and just being a flat-out pest.

My wife and I recently took a trip to Las Vegas, Nevada, and stayed at the Excalibur. We flew Southwest airlines and took a Showtime shuttle to the hotel. We had an early flight, and so when we got to the hotel it was too soon before check-in. We went through the casino, luggage in tow, and headed for the bag storage. Walking past the registration desks, we were approached by a woman, "How long will you be in Vegas?"

"Till Sunday," I told her.

"Come with me," she said and walked us over to another desk a few feet away.

We were offered a choice between two tickets to a show, or $100 worth of gambling money which could be used in any casino where the MGM Player's Club card was accepted and two buffets at the Excalibur. All we had to do was sit through a presentation for a new resort in Las Vegas, The Grandview, which is a time share, and have a look around the place.

All fine and dandy. It's not really my thing. But I let my wife decide and she decided if we couldn't check in yet anyway, and we'd get a few things free, why not? What did we have to lose?

Well, nothing really. Though we did have to cough up $40 right off the bat. $20 would be returned to us at the end along with the rewards.

We sat through the presentation, and checked out the condos, and listened to the spiels. I won't get into the details. We all know what a time share is. We also know what it is not. All I will say is that we politely said "No thank you" to at least 3 people before they finally let us go and we were able to collect our rewards—which we did get.

The time share deal was a bogus one. The presentation was weird at best. But my problem was more with the fact that throughout our stay we were approached by the Grandview people on the casino floor at the Excalibur at least 25 times in 4 days and 3 nights. It probably would have been a much higher number had we spent our entire time on the Excalibur's casino floor—but it's Vegas, and there's myriad casino's to choose from. So we went to others.

The Grandview folks were at the Luxor as well, I should note.

Again, I don't mind being thrown a sales pitch. Business is business. And no matter what my thoughts may be on time shares, it's a business, and there are customers who enjoy them. There is a market. And if you want to fill rooms, you have to market them.

But I will say this. The experience left me with a sour taste in my mouth.

I like the Excalibur. It's a nice hotel. The staff was courteous. The room was nice. The price was right. And they have an amazing casino and the upstairs section between the Excalibur and the Luxor is very convenient with McDonald's, Starbucks, Krispy Kreme and whatever else you may fancy, including Pizza Hut.

But when you have to constantly say no to someone who approaches you it becomes annoying. When it's repeated over 25 times? It's extremely annoying. Excalibur should be aware that it has customers too. It needs to keep those customers coming back. I'll likely stay there again. But this is strike one. In this case there are only two strikes allowed. If my next stay at the Excalibur is riddled with sales people at every door, and at every turn, I will not stay there again.

As for The Grandview Resort Las Vegas? It's a scam. It may not seem that way in the beginning. But once you reach the end of it, it becomes all too clear.

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Friday, April 16, 2010

FOX FORBIDDING HANNITY TAPING AT TEA PARTY EVENT WAS RIGHT DECISION

Fox News' recent decision to forbid Sean Hannity from taping his popular nightly show from a Cincinatti tea party event, after learning that the event's organizers were charging attendees for a chance to be closer to the Fox News talking head during the taping, is a good one in my opinion. According to various reports, attendees were being charged between $5 and $20, depending upon how close to the Fox star they wanted to be, for the opportunity. Media Matters, a liberal media outlet, cited that Hannity was also directing supporters through his own personal website to a link where they could buy tickets to attend the rally.

Even Rupert Murdoch, owner of News Corp., which also owns the Fox News channel, got in on the discussion, telling reporters that he felt it was not appropriate for Fox News to be associated with any current movement.
That assertion makes perfect sense to me. News media is there to cover an event. Not to drive one. If anyone need any proof of this, one need look no further than nearly the entire coverage by liberal media circles of the presidential campaign of Barack Obama.
Fox News prides itself on being fair and balanced, and while there are plenty of people on the left who like to try and portray Fox as an "arm of the republican party," as had been strongly suggested by the Obama administration back when the big war with Fox was underway, it is simply not true. Anita Dunn, on the White House communications team, practically was made famous by making this very claim—we won't even get into the Chairman Mao comment, but it clearly erases any credibility on her part if you ask me.

It is important, in my view, that media remain as biased as it possibly can. Wherever there are people involved, you will always have some ideology injected into the discussion, and into the news coverage. That's undeniable. And clearly guys like Sean Hannity are no strangers to being involved with a particular political party—certainly that will have some bearing on their commentary. But they also clearly label themselves for what they are. Commentators. Not journalists.

But having Hannity directly associated with the tea party movement via Fox News pushes the envelope. And if you think about, I'm inclined to even offer Hannity a little bit of a shame on you for this one. Don't you think MSNBC and all the other left wing loons like Keith Olbermann and Chris Matthews are going to eat it right up if they actually tape a television show at a conservative event?

Quite frankly, I'm thinking as well that if MSNBC were to tape a show from an obvious left wing group, no matter what it was, Fox News would as well find that to be an affirmation of bias. Why would we want to be associated in the same light?
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STARVIN' THE DANDELIONS


I've got this notion that if you pull off the tops of dandelions that they'll starve. It's sort of like taking away someone's mouth, if you think about it. The bees can't come along and pollinate, and well, isn't the flower part where a lot of the food action is in a dandelion? I don't know, really. I'm not a scientist by trade, and certainly by the looks of any plant I've ever been on the side of trying not to kill, it's clear I'm not a botanist either.
Perhaps the word butcher would be a more suitable fit.

I'm sure I look like a bonafide damned fool trekking through the yard with my pail in hand, plucking off those yellowy flower tops. Then again, it's always a mighty dandy site (no pun itended) to look across the freshly plucked yard and see only patches of green.

Voila! Success. Take that you damned wicked weeds!

I laugh all the time at my neighbor who bothers to pay those guys who come along and spray chemicals on his grass, and then put up those nifty little white signs that read "Treated Lawn—Keep Off Grass." Even if I must concede that he does, in fact, have the best looking lawn on the block.

But I've got the way, plucking those dandelions out of my own lawn. I need pay no one. I need no special dandelion expunging chemicals. Starvin' the little bastards is what I do. And it's free, aside from my time, and depending on the day, maybe just a tiny crick in my back from all that bending down.

At least that's my thought. That is, until the next day. Then the laughter stops. As I walk out and peer over the green landscape, only to find that they've returned. The dandelions. There they are like tiny yellow soldiers standing afoot in my lawn. I cry foul. I feel like a fool. Defeat is swift. Damnit all!

But not for long.

For I've got the power of my wits, and my pail is empty. And just as the day before, I begin picking them off one by one, tossing the little yellow bulbs into the pail. Hah, hah, hah, I've got you! A sinister grin forms on my lips. I'll win this fight. Eat your heart out Mr. Neighbor with your pristine green lawn.

You see, I've got this notion that if you pull off the tops of dandelions they'll starve.

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Friday, April 9, 2010

THE GOD IN SCHOOL LOOPHOLE


I'm not a religious guy at all. Still, I am a conservative, and I absolutely do subscribe to America, its traditions and values, and while I do not believe that prayer should be allowed in schools, that the word God certainly does have its place in some context. Invoking God in the pledge of allegiance for example. And if a student wishes to invoke God or their religion in a speech on the school grounds, that should well be allowed as well. That's really a part of free speech is it not? And it's different from teaching religion, certainly that's true. Invoking something religious will not create converts, and so long as the invocation is done without being a sermon I don't see anything wrong with it.

A story I read recently was really fun to read because it shows us one small loophole around policies that go too far, such as using the word God in schools. I think you'll get a kick out of it, and certainly will find it inspiring as well. I give a very big thumbs up to the graduating class in this story.

The Sneeze

USA Made Clothing by All American Clothing

Thursday, April 8, 2010

DOW 11,000


I remember a while back I tried to start a stock picking blog. Not that I'm a Wall Street elite or anything like that, but I do play the market, and I do know a little bit about it. I'm certainly not giving Warren Buffet a run for his money in case you may be wondering. Still, I do all right. Though the title I chose was sort of a silly one looking back on it. What in the hell was I thinking?
The Nail Biting Stock Picker.

I really had to ask myself who in their right mind would follow a guy who picks stocks like that? Nail biting doesn't really elude a sense of confidence does it? I mean, it would be like hopping into a taxi with the moniker White Knuckled Cab Service on the door.

No, I don't think I'd go with that service either.

Still, getting it right can be a difficult prospect. There's so much going on in the markets everyday, up one and down two, and the news is quick. And there's a ton of it. Throughout the day tons and tons of news hits the newsrooms and bounces around the Internet sites, and all of it pulls and tugs a little bit this way and a little bit that way.

I call it the dance. And it makes me laugh sometimes. Because it seems that the news sways. Just a few days ago we get this new jobs number out, and guys sit at a round table and start hemming and hawing about this being great. Best numbers in a long time. Ah, forget the fact that 46,000 of that 160,000 were newly hired census workers. But the numbers looked good. Not the end of the road for trouble in the jobs sector, but better. The market rallies.

And then today we get a spike in unemployment claims.

We're dancing. We really are. One day spike in new home starts and the market gets a lift. The next day a report comes out that we have seen a rise in foreclosures yet again.

Right now the markets are just up against that 11,000 number. We're doing the dance with it.

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Monday, March 29, 2010

OF COURSE TIGER SHOULD RETURN TO GOLF


The big question rolling around, now that Tiger Woods will apparently play in the Masters, is should he? I ask why shouldn't he play? No one is going to deny that the recent infidelities of Tiger Woods were horrible. His reputation is forever going to be haunted by his sexual escapades. But at the end of the day he is a golfer, and that is all.

I say, let the cameras roll, let the commentators comment, let the tabloids dig for and spill all the bean they want to. To Tiger I say ignore it all and just swing the club. Swing the club and pay no attention whatsoever to what people think. The news teams, the fans, the booing audience members (and you know they'll show up). Put on the same blinders you put on when you were with all those women. Drown it all out, like you drowned out the fact that you were a married man. Brush it all off.

Just golf. Swing the club and be oblivious.

He won't get the big endorsement bucks. His paycheck will be severely shorter than he's usually accustomed to. But so what? The balls will fall where they may, his game is his game, and I'm absolutely certain that he'll play as well as he did before, despite it all. I don't have to agree with his lifestyle to conclude it has nothing to do with the sport he plays.

And so I say yes, he should play in the Masters.


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Sunday, March 28, 2010

THREATENING OUR ELECTED LEADERS SOLVES NOTHING


The American people are angry. After all the polls clearly indicated that the majority of the American people did not want this health care reform bill that ultimately was passed, it passed anyway. The president and the democrats in the Congress went forward clearly knowing that at least 52% of the population opposed the bill.

But is it appropriate to direct that anger at our elected leaders through death threats? Through violence? Should we decide that beating down our elected leaders is the answer? Of course not. We've got to get it together. We need to direct our anger appropriately and effectively. This kind of reaction will only make us look like crybaby buffoons.

Look, we said it when Bush was determined to be our president after all the debacle over chads and whatever else—it is what it is. So let's move on and get on with the business of the people and stop bickering about what is. We need to take our own advice. The deal is done, it stinks to high heaven, we all know that all too well, but here is where are, and now what we need to do is to focus on what we do next to appropriately and effectively make things better tomorrow.

The fact is that whatever we think about our current elected leaders, ultimately I think it is an absolutely fair statement to say that our system of government works. The Congress and the President of the United States got this one terribly wrong. Of that there is no debating. This big fucking deal, as the vice presdent so eloquently put it, is going to cost us far more than just an arm and a leg to be sure. We're in for one hell of a debt dealing ride that could make a swingset do loop the loops like a roller coaster. The dems clearly did this vote with their fingers crammed deep in their ears.

We cannot fairly measure our system of government based on this one bill, even if it's a big one. Even if it's a disastrous one. Literally sending our elected leaders to the guillotine may sound enticing, but...

We can vote. That's what we can do. And we'll have just such an opportunity coming around this November to send a loud and clear message that the American people are not happy with what's gone down. This is our proper discourse. Waving fists, raising bats, or sending idle threats against our elected officials when things don't go our way is not the answer. It's frustrating. At times it can be downright maddening. But to strongarm the process? Even if they did it?

How can we expect our elected officials to make the right choices and vote accordingly if they have to do so in fear? Fear only serves to taint and corrupt the system even further. Let our politicians fear their jobs when they get it wrong or ignore the people. Not their lives.

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Friday, March 26, 2010

JESSE JAMES DOES A TIGER WOODS

Can anybody say it with me? Here we go again. A very short while ago Tiger Woods was all over the headlines about his many escapades with women who seemed to come out the woodwork, and now we've got Jesse James in the same boat, with the numbers continuing to grow. Whether or not Jesse James can reach Tiger Wood's level numbers is yet to be seen, but I don't think I'd personally be all that surprised if that were to fast become the case.

In one sense it's hard to believe these guys would ever want to cheat on the women they've had the pleasure of knowing so well. Elin Nordegren is absolutely beautiful. And so is Sandra Bullock. Besides the fact that Bullock also happens to be cute as a button to boot.

But fame and money do funny things. So does power. So does the idea that one is privelaged, or gifted in a particular way. These guys have all of these things in their corner which only serve to make temptation a bit greater. They are desirables too. And men, like women, love to be wanted.

Let's not forget that men love sex as well, and with such availability, it would seem almost too difficult to resist. Like a kid in a candy store. Or, perhaps consider this. If you came into a store every single day and saw that the register was wide open and no one was looking, no one was there to catch you, and you said no many, many times...

Wouldn't the open register prove too tempting? I mean, if you knew for a fact that you could take the money out of it and not get caught, wouldn't it become too difficult to resist?

I'm not condoning the actions of either of these guys. It's deplorable to say the least. But still, I think I can understand, at least to a point, how the mistake is made.

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

HOW DO I MAKE FACEBOOK CHAT EMOTICONS


I think it's at least fairly safe to say that most everyone who uses the Internet also happens to at least have a profile on Facebook. It's become a very popular place for all sorts of personality types, and is used by many to get out ideas and to network. Mainly it's just a great place to keep up with the folks in our lives who we happen to be closest to.

For now, it's the "in" thing to do.

One of the things we like to do on Facebook is chat, and because of that, emoticons, as they are commonly called, have become a very big part of the english language. Emoticons of all sorts have even made their way into every day writing—much to the chagrin of many, mind you.

But how do you make them? The emoticons, that is? Here's a great article I found on HubPages which shows all of the variations. There's probably many more than you thought there were.


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HOW TO MAKE FACEBOOK CHAT EMOTICONS

Facebook Chat Emoticons

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

SIRIUS XM MUST FOLLOW THROUGH ON REVERSE STOCK SPLIT



For the second time, Sirius XM has received notice from Nasdaq that their stock could be delisted if it does not remain above $1 per share for 30 consecutive days. In a way I find myself puzzled, considering that the company's board has already approved a reverse stock split to hike the price up. The company says it will do what they feel is best for the shareholders. My great wonder is what good delisting would do for the shareholders. Part of the thought is that if, for example, the company were to suddenly decide it may be better positioned as a private company—this is conjecture entirely, the company has not spoken a word about such a thing—then presumably they would have to issue a tender offer to current shareholders. In my own case, considering my cost basis, which I will not disclose, I'd lose an enormous amount of money on my position. I have a suspicion that a great many others would stand to be in the same boat. Being traded on the OTCBB isn't something I think would bode well for the stock either.

Sure. It's an investment. There are no guarantees. My cost basis is not the concern of the board. Nor is the cost basis of any other investor. I could have averaged down. Perhaps I even should have averaged down. The prices certainly are far below my cost basis at this current price point. And obviously the fact that I have not sold my shares, despite all that's happened with this stock over the years, indicates that I believe the stock is undervalued. In my mind it's obvious to me that the company has a future. That's why I've kept my money put up to this point.

So, what's in my best interest, as much as I don't like reverse stock splits, I think it is to do exactly that. Reverse split the shares and put the share price around $5. It's not to say that it solves the issues the company has that has managed to drag the share price down and keep it down. But it would create value, and it would keep the stock trading on the Nasdaq. And let's face it. Even though a reverse stock split may meet with some bad press because it's considered a sign of weakness within the company, but so would a delisting from the Nasdaq do that.

My own thoughts are that the current price is part of the reason the stock is having trouble. Investors and traders don't like stocks that trade at such low prices. It signals to them that there are deep problems, and it invariably increases the risk to the investor's investment.

But there are positives here. The company had some help, and some interest, from Liberty Media a while back, and I think it has used the money well. Car sales have increased, and this has helped to allow them a little bit more room for growing their subscriber base. They've expanded their business a bit outside just cars. And the company was finally able to show a profit in the 4th quarter after a year of losses. These are all good things. These are things that should have allowed the stock to trade above $1 for longer than it did after it released earnings.

I think, as painful as it is, a reverse stock split is the best answer shareholders can get right now. If the company is solid, and I think that it is, then the reverse stock split can simply be considered to be priced into the stock, and shouldn't be a negative factor in the future of the company.


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