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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Whales and Government

Edwards epilogue: Does the press really vet presidential candidates?

Does the liberal media give Democratic politicians a free pass? What do you think? Look at all the scrutiny Sarah Palin had to endure (and still does). And then there's John Edwards ...

From POLITICO:
Democrats who seriously considered making Edwards the party's 2008 presidential nominee could be forgiven for asking: Now you tell us?

The revelations about Edwards, contained in two best-selling books, have undermined one of the favorite conceits of political journalism, that the intensive scrutiny given candidates by reporters during a presidential campaign is an excellent filter to determine who is fit for the White House.

While the media "usually does well" in vetting candidates, said presidential historian Michael Beschloss, "Edwards is a good case" in which it didn't.
Read the full story at the link below:

Edwards epilogue: Does the press really vet presidential candidates? - Michael Calderone - POLITICO.com

'Stop Al Gore Before He Lies Again'



Al Gore couldn't hit water if he fell out of a boat. Is Al Gore the last person on Earth who still believes this global warming crap or is he just in it for the money?

From Alan Caruba's post at Warning Signs:

The New York Times once again is Al Gore's "enabler", publishing a February 28 opinion editorial, "We Can't Wish Away Climate Change", despite the mounting evidence that global warming was and is a complete fabrication.

In November 2009, the Telegraph, a British newspaper, carried a story, "Al Gore could become world's first carbon billionaire", so let us disabuse ourselves of the notion that Gore just wants to save the world.

Heavily invested in the "carbon credits" scam and technologies whose success depend on people believing fairy tales about "clean energy" alternatives such as wind and solar energy, Gore has enriched himself by trumpeting the biggest hoax of the modern era.

It is no surprise that The New York Times published his latest collection of lies. The reportorial record of the Times has been decades of lies about global warming. Whatever patina of respectability it once had has been eroded by its participation in the fraud. Why should it stop now?

There is increasing discussion of whether testimony before Congress by Gore and other global warming advocates constitute criminal behavior that begins with lying under oath.
Read the full post at Warning Signs

'Avatar' tops $700M at box office

Nothing too exciting at this weekend's box office as February comes to an end.

"Shutter Island" held on to the No. 1 spot with an estimated $22.2 million for the weekend of Feb. 26-28, bringing its two-week total to $75 million, according to BoxOfficeMojo.com

The Bruce Willis comedy "Cop Out" debuts in second place with $18.5 million.

Another new film, "The Crazies," took in $16.5 million.

"Avatar" continues to add to its record-breaking run, taking in
$14 million over the weekend to push its domestic gross to $706.9 million.

Rounding out the Top 5 is "Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief," which took in $9.8 million. The film has grossed $71.2 million in three weeks.

The Truth About Potholes

Al Gore Mocked At Apple Meeting: He's 'Become A Laughingstock'

Al Gore Mocked At Apple Meeting: He's 'Become A Laughingstock' | NewsBusters.org

Inside Nancy Pelosi's Swamp

Pelosi Says She's Running Most Ethical Congress Ever, Media Mum | NewsBusters.org

Obama Signs One-Year Extension of Patriot Act - on a Saturday Night Of Course

Obama Signs One-Year Extension of Patriot Act - on a Saturday Night Of Course | NewsBusters.org

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Al Gore: World To End, Fox News To Blame

Gore: World To End, Fox News To Blame | NewsBusters.org

Video: NewsBusted

Marksmen kill 9 deer from herd in Reading cemetery

The herd of deer living in a cemetery in the middle of a city is no more. City officials said leaving the deer alone would be too dangerous because of potential poachers and the spread of disease.

Marksmen kill 9 deer from herd in Reading cemetery

Rendell Signs 2 More Execution Warrants

Number of execution warrants signed by Gov. Ed Rendell since January 2003 -- 103.

Number of prisoners on Pennsylvania's Death Row executed since January 2003 -- 0.

Governor Rendell Signs Execution Warrants for Cam Ly, Shonda Walter

Congress Fails to Extend Transportation Program

Statement by Kathleen Marvaso, AAA Vice President of Public Affairs on Congress' Failure to Extend the the Transportation Program

Toyota Extends Additional Services to all U.S. Toyota and Lexus Customers Affected by Recent Recalls

Toyota Extends Additional Services to all U.S. Toyota and Lexus Customers Affected by Recent Recalls

Rep. Michele Bachmann On Wasted Health Summit

Dems call for Charlie Rangel's gavel

Dems call for Charlie Rangel's gavel - Glenn Thrush and John Bresnahan - POLITICO.com

CNN Helps Van Jones With His Comeback Campaign

CNN Helps Van Jones With His Comeback Campaign | NewsBusters.org

Friday Debt Dump, Part 1: Shhh -- Fannie Mae Lost $72 Bil in 2009, Needs Another $15.3 Bil in Cash

Friday Debt Dump, Part 1: Shhh -- Fannie Mae Lost $72 Bil in 2009, Needs Another $15.3 Bil in Cash | NewsBusters.org

Friday, February 26, 2010

Barack Obama: Interrupter in Chief

Another Incompetent Obama Aide Expected to Resign



White House Social Secretary Desiree Rogers, the woman responsible for the infamous White House security breach, is expected to leave her post, according to POLITICO.

Desiree Rogers to resign - AMIE PARNES & NIA-MALIKA HENDERSON | POLITICO CLICK

MSNBC's Norah O'Donnell Bungles the Facts in 'Truth-squadding' Attempt

MSNBC's Norah O'Donnell Bungles the Facts in 'Truth-squadding' Attempt | NewsBusters.org

Last Chance For Obamacare


See related editorial, "The Sham Summit," at Investor's Business Daily.

Global Warming Meltdown

Global Warming fanatics continue to melt in the face of public scrutiny. "Sure, we'll open up our books now that we've been exposed as frauds."

Climate change data to face independent scrutiny - Washington Times

Governor Rendell Signs Execution Warrants for Cam Ly, Shonda Walter

Gov. Ed Rendell has signed 103 execution warrants since taking office in January 2003. And the number of death row inmates executed in Pennsylvania since that time: O.

Governor Rendell Signs Execution Warrants for Cam Ly, Shonda Walter

Rep. Steve King Denounces Staged Obama Health Care Summit

Reform Candidates for PA Legislature

I'm compiling links to Web sites for reform candidates for the Pennsylvania Legislature for posting on my blogs. (No incumbents, please. If you're already in Harrisburg, you're most likely part of the problem.) If you know of a candidate (Democrat, Republican or third party) who is running in 2010 to help clean up the mess in Harrisburg, send me a link to their Web site. I will review all Web sites to make sure the candidates are running on a reform platform. My e-mail address is tphyrillas@gmail.com

The Jimmy Carter Years

Honors for Founding Mothers and Fathers of the Tea Party Movement

The Founding Mothers and Fathers of the Tea Party Movement to be Honored in Live Webcast by Viguerie Marketing Institute on 1 Year Anniversary Tomorrow

Pelosi, Obama Mislead on Abortion Funding in Health Care Bill

Pelosi, Obama Mislead on Abortion Funding in Health Care Bill

Nancy Pelosi is A) A Liar B) Stupid C) All of the Above

PELOSI FACT CHECK: Chairman Rangel DID violate House rules

Speaker Pelosi: "All I saw was the press release where they said he did not violate the rules of the House." (The Hill, 2/26/10)

Ethics Report: "The Report further finds that Representative Charles B. Rangel violated the House gift rule by accepting payment or reimbursement for travel to the 2007 and 2008 conferences." (Statement of the Chair and Ranking Republican Member of the Ethics Committee, 2/26/10)

Survey: Wrong health care priorities by Obama

Further proof that Barack Obama just doesn't get it when it comes to health care reform.

A new survey shows open markets and tort reform -- neither included in Obamacare -- should be the top priority of lawmakers.

From Argyle Executive Forum:
Survey results by Argyle Executive Forum in response to President Obama's Healthcare Summit reveal business leaders feel open markets and tort reform should be the top priority of law makers.

Argyle Executive Forum conducted the survey electronically today and received more than 900 responses from members of its senior corporate leadership community.

The precise wording of the survey question was:

"Which of these issues do you feel should be the top priority of law makers as they relate to the future of the U.S. health care system?"

The choices and associated percentages of the results are listed below
• Open markets & increased competition across state lines – 22.6%
• Tort reform – 21.9%
• Universal healthcare - Government option – 18%
• Cost containment - fraud elimination – 16%
• Coverage for preexisting conditions – 6%
• Prevention programs – 4%
• Plan portability – 1%
• Other – 10%
For more on Argyle Executive Forum, visit www.argyleconferences.com

Hell-in-a-Handbasket

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Taxpayer Group Issues Spending Scorecard for Congress

Although more lawmakers joined the ranks of "Taxpayers' Friends" for their voting records in 2009, the vast legion of "Big Spenders" who opted to grow government remained overwhelmingly large, according to the National Taxpayers Union's 31st annual Rating of Congress.

The unique scorecard utilizes every roll call vote affecting fiscal policy – 333 House and 227 Senate votes taken last year.

Here's how Pennsylvania members of Congress did on the newest ranking issued by the National Taxpayers Union. (Can't help noticing all the "F" grades next to Democrats.)

U.S. Senate
Bob Casey Jr. - F
Arlen Specter - D

U.S. House
Jason Altmire - D
Bob Brady - F
Chris Carney - D
Kathy Dahlkemper - F
Charlie Dent - C+
Mike Doyle - F
Chakah Fattah - F
Jim Gerlach - C+
Tim Holden - F
Paul Kanjorski - F
Pat Murphy - F
Tim Murphy - C
John Murtha - DECEASED
Joe Pitts - B+
Todd Platts - C+
Alyson Schwartz - F
Joe Sestak - F
Bud Shuster - B
Glenn Thompson - B

Read more about the ratings at the link below:

Taxpayer Group's Nonpartisan Scorecard Finds More 'Taxpayers' Friends' but Many 'Big Spenders' in Congress

If Barack Obama fails today, we'll all be swept away

An excellent perspective on the failed Obama presidency from Anatole Kaletsky, writing in The Times of London:
You may not have noticed, but today is a very important day for US politics, world economic prospects and even for the global balance of power between Western democracy and benign dictatorship along Chinese lines. Why? Because today marks either the beginning of the end of Barack Obama's presidency, or the end of the beginning.

At 10am US Eastern Time, he will host an all-day "summit", broadcast live on nationwide TV, with his Republican congressional opponents and his wayward Democratic supporters, to try to establish some kind of political consensus on the top priority of his presidency — reform of the ruinously expensive US healthcare system. Medicine now absorbs 17 per cent of US national income, double the average in other advanced economies and half as much again as Switzerland, which has the next most expensive healthcare.

If nothing is done to change the US healthcare system, it can be stated with mathematical certainty that the US Government and many leading US companies will be driven into bankruptcy, a fate that befell General Motors and Chrysler largely because of their inability to meet retired workers’ contractually guaranteed medical costs.

Today's summit represents Mr Obama's last chance to find a way forward, either by shaming some Republicans into supporting him or by embarrassing his own perennially divided Democratic Party into uniting around a single plan. If he is unable to do this, he will have almost no chance of passing any significant legislation on any other issue —– not on energy, budgetary responsibility, macroeconomic management or even on such seemingly popular issues as bank regulation and jobs.

In short, Mr Obama has staked his entire presidency on today's summit.
Read the full column at the link below:

If Barack Obama fails today, we’ll all be swept away | Anatole Kaletsky - Times Online

PA GOP: Rep. Lentz neglects job to campaign in D.C.

Republican Party of Pennsylvania Spokesman Mike Barley called on Democratic state Rep. Bryan Lentz (a 7th Congressional District candidate) to share with voters what campaign activities in Washington, D.C., were more important than addressing the budget challenges facing Pennsylvania.

From a PA GOP press release:
"The Rendell Administration's proposed budget contains a number of proposals that could potentially affect critical services in Rep. Bryan Lentz's district, particularly within the budget at the Department of Public Welfare," Barley said. "With important assistance for many local families on the line, Bryan Lentz chose to ignore his responsibilities as a full-time legislator in order to campaign for higher office.

"Bryan Lentz still has a responsibility to represent the people of Pennsylvania as a legislator, a duty he is ignoring to engage in campaign activities. Pennsylvania doesn't need another politician like Bryan Lentz in Washington, D.C."

Yesterday, State Representative Bryan Lentz skipped three hearings of the House Appropriations Committee where officials from the Department of Aging, Department of Public Welfare, and Department of Insurance testified about budget cuts and their impacts on state programs.
Originally posted at THE CENTRIST

Help a young mom who lost 2 kids to cancer

A young Montgomery County mom who has lost two of her children to cancer needs your help to create a place for families who have experienced grief like she has to find peace, comfort and resources. All you have to do is visit a Web site and vote for her project. This is legit. The full story is in today's edition of The Pottstown Mercury.

From reporter Brandie Kessler:
Erin Curtis is determined to transform the experience of losing two of her three children into hope and healing.

With the help of the Pepsi Refresh Project, which is awarding individuals, businesses and non-profit organizations with $1.3 million this month, Curtis would be able to create a place for families who have experienced grief like she has to find peace, comfort and resources.

Curtis, 29, explained the ordeal she and her partner, Jeff Megonigal went through when two of their children were diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, or ALL.

Their daughter, Avery, died from the disease when she was 17 months old in November 2007. In August 2008, the couple became pregnant with twin boys, Calvin and Nolan.

However, when the boys were just 4 months old, Nolan was diagnosed with ALL, and in March 2009, he, too, died of the disease.

Despite having lost so much, Curtis is full of hope for her future, and the future of her 18 month old son, Calvin, who is healthy.

She is also hopeful that she can fulfill her dream of creating a home to support other families who experience the loss of a child from terminal illness.
Read the full story below:

From mother's loss comes a dream of hope

Posted using ShareThis

The Summit

Helpful Resources Available for Pennsylvania Crime Victims

Helpful Resources Available for Pennsylvania Crime Victims through New Web Site Designed by Crime Victims

Speed Limit Reduced to 45 MPH on Northeast PA Interstates

Speed Limit Reduced to 45 MPH on Northeast PA Interstates

Governor Rendell, First Lady Honor Distinguished African-Americans

Governor Rendell, First Lady Honor Distinguished African-Americans

Newspaper: The Real Cost of Obamacare


If the Obama Administration is starting to feel like the movie, "Groundhog Day," you're not far off. After wasting an entire year pushing a government takeover of health care that the majority of Americans oppose, Barack Obama is still peddling the same snake oil.

From Investor's Business Daily:
Health Reform: The linchpin of ObamaCare 2.0 is that 31 million uninsured will be covered at little added cost. But in fact, White House estimates for low costs are based on little more than accounting tricks.

The president's plan "puts our budget and economy on a more stable path by reducing the deficit by $100 billion over the next 10 years — and about $1 trillion over the second decade — by cutting government overspending and reining in waste, fraud and abuse," the White House says on its Web site.

Sound too good to be true? It is.

None of the numbers can be believed. The plan is a result of blatantly dishonest accounting for the real costs of the program, while grossly overstating its benefits. Americans should know the actual 10-year cost is closer to $2 trillion over 10 years, not the $950 billion claimed, when all the actual costs are toted up.

How can there be such a wide gap? Mainly because the president's plan doesn't provide benefits until the second half of the first decade. So it pretends that it will "only" cost $950 billion. But once the program kicks in, the full 10-year cost of benefits will be included — at a real current cost of $2 trillion or more.

Or, as columnist Charles Krauthammer, himself a trained physician, told Fox News' Bill O'Reilly: "It's a trick. The way the Democrats got under (the spending limit imposed by Obama) was by making 98% of the expenditures, the benefits that you and I would get under the bill, occur in the second half of the decade."
Read the full editorial at the newspaper's Web site.

New Survey Shows Increased Use of Twitter, Facebook by State DOTs

New Survey Shows Increased Use of Twitter, Facebook by State DOTs

Web Site Offers Single Access Point for Wounded Warriors

Web Site Offers Single Access Point for Wounded Warriors

Dallas Tea Party Invites Olbermann to Event to Witness Tea Party Diversity

Pension reform met with protest - from teachers

Unless you're Ed Rendell and you've have had your head stuck in the sand for the past 8 years, you know that a pension time bomb is about to go off in Pennsylvania.

What happens when a school district attempts to address the issue? Teachers show up to protest, of course. They don't have a problem with bankrupting school districts so they can get their guaranteed lifetime pensions.

From an editorial in today's edition of The Pottstown Mercury:
The percentage increase in local share needed to keep the pension fund solvent will increase more than 600 percent for all area school districts between now and 2012.

Projections compiled by the Pennsylvania  School Boards Association are so dire that school boards are being told they face drastic program cuts or local bankruptcy, unless something changes.

Despite that prediction, teachers and their supporters protested a vote earlier this week by the West Chester Area School Board to endorse state pension reform. The school board unanimously passed a resolution supporting House Bill 2135 and Senate Bill 1185, both of which propose a hybrid pension system to relieve some of the pressure on local school contributions.

The legislation would replace the defined benefit system currently in place and replace it with a hybrid system for public school employees enrolling after June 30.
Read the full report at the newspaper's Web site.

Abusive Harry Reid

Can change come to PA's 12th Congressional District?

Voters in Pennsylvania's 12th Congressional District, held by the late John Murtha since 1974, can make a clean break with politics-as-usual when filling Murtha's unexpired term on May 18.

The Democrats are fielding a bunch of political retreads. Republicans are offering fresh faces.

From POLITICO:
Despite the decidedly anti-establishment national political mood, the Democratic special election field to succeed the late Rep. John Murtha (D-Pa.) has a distinctly insider flavor to it, marked by a crop of prospective candidates who boast years of experience in Harrisburg and Washington.

Former Pennsylvania Treasurer Barbara Hafer touts her years as a statewide officeholder as her leading credential. Former Lt. Gov. Mark Singel, a close confidant to Gov. Ed Rendell, heads one of the state's most influential lobbying firms. And the latest entrant into the race is Murtha's longtime district director, Mark Critz, who's running to continue the late congressman's legacy of delivering much-needed federal funds to the district.

Even the candidates viewed as longer shots have held elective office within the nine-county district, including Cambria County Controller Ed Cernic Jr. and former Cambria County Controller Albert Penksa, who is considering a bid.

By contrast, the Republicans are running lesser-known candidates with outsider profiles. The 2008 GOP nominee, William Russell, crusaded against earmarks and runaway federal spending and continues to hammer home those themes in his second bid for the seat. And businessman Tim Burns, whom Washington Republicans favor, is a first-time candidate who notes on his campaign home page: "My name is Tim Burns, and I am NOT a politician. I don't claim to know how Washington works because I don't believe it does."
Read the full story at the link below:

Insider Democrats must walk fine line - Josh Kraushaar - POLITICO.com

Toomey Keeps Big Lead Over Specter, Sestak

It doesn't matter who the Democratic nominee will be for the U.S. Senate seat in Pennsylvania, according to a new poll.

Pat Toomey holds a huge lead over Republican-turned-Democrat Arlen Specter and far-left Democratic Congressman Joe Sestak, according to the Franklin & Marshall College Poll.

Pennsylvania voters want change ... and Toomey can deliver it.

From the latest F&M College Poll: Toomey leads Specter by 44 percent to 34 percent with 6 percent preferring another candidate and 16 percent undecided. Toomey leads Sestak 38 percent to 20 percent with 3 percent preferring someone else and 39 percent undecided.

Click on the link below to read Bruce Drake's analysis of the race at Poll Watch:

GOP's Toomey Keeps Big Lead Over Specter, Sestak in Pennsylvania -- Politics Daily

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Tom Corbett unveils 12-point reform package

Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Corbett has released a 12-point plan to reform state government.

"To create real economic growth in Pennsylvania and put hard-working Pennsylvanians back to work ... we must start from the foundation up and reform the government that guides our economy," Corbett writes at his Web site. "Our government needs to be held to a higher standard to restore taxpayers' trust and confidence and to bring about good government at all levels and in every branch."

Corbett said his campaign will emphasize the need for "an open, transparent, accountable and trustworthy government that finally puts Pennsylvania taxpayers first and gets the state back on track and moving in the right direction."

If elected, Corbett says he will introduce a comprehensive plan and begin the process of reforming Harrisburg and putting the "people" back in the "people's government."

During his first week in office, Corbett will issue executive orders to immediately implement far-reaching reforms that do not require legislative action and will work swiftly with the General Assembly on any reforms needing legislative approval, according to his Web site.

Here are the reforms Corbett is pushing:
1) Reducing the Size & Cost of Government
2) Transparency in State Government
3) Elimination of WAMS & Discretionary Funds
4) Elimination of State Government Paid Per Diems
5) Reducing the State Automotive Fleet
6) Biennial Budgeting
7) Zero-Based/Performance-Based Budgeting
8) Cap the General Assembly "Leadership Funds"
9) Sunset & Audit of State Boards & Commissions
10) Consolidation of Services
11) Health care contributions for Legislators
12) Ban Political Contributions and Gifts During Procurement Process
Corbett offers more details about the reform package at his Web site, www.tomcorbettforgovernor.com

Video: GOP Leadership Stakeout on Jobs, Health Care

National Inflation Association: Ron Paul Only Hope to Prevent U.S. Hyperinflation

Ron Paul Only Hope to Prevent U.S. Hyperinflation

Obama Proposal Is No Bipartisan Compromise

President, GOP Meet Tomorrow, But Obama Proposal No Bipartisan Compromise

Dems shun Evan Bayh for speaking the truth

Have you noticed how there's no room for dissension within the Democratic Party?

Look how quickly the Dems have turned on their once golden boy, Sen. Evan Bayh, because he has pointed a finger at his fellow Democrats for the gridlock in Washington, D.C.

The party has been hijacked by far-left extremists -- Obama, Pelosi, Reid, who are bent on destroying the party if they don't get their way. Moderates like Bayh have no place in today's Democratic Party.

And isn't it interesting that the liberal media is still trying to portray the Republican Party as divided when it's the Democrats who are dysfunctional?

From POLITICO:
Sen. Evan Bayh handed Republicans plenty of ammunition to use against Democrats when he announced his retirement last week — and some of his colleagues are none too happy about it.

In explaining his decision not to seek reelection, the Indiana Democrat has complained publicly about legislative gridlock, saying that Congress hasn't done enough to prop up the economy and hasn't created a single private-sector job in the past six months.

While many Senate Democrats share Bayh's frustration with Washington partisanship and stalling on major bills, some are angry that he's stepping all over their 2010 message: that the 111th Congress has been one of the most productive in a generation, that the stimulus stemmed the tide of job losses and that Republicans, not Democrats, deserve most of the blame for the paralysis afflicting Capitol Hill.

"I just have no idea what he's doing," said one Democratic senator, whose face turned red as he threw up his hands after being asked about Bayh.

"We get some of the blame; we moved a little too slowly on health care," said Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio). "My only disappointment, and the only thing I'll say about Sen. Bayh, is that I think a more accurate portrayal by him was how Republicans have tried to block everything that we've done."

"It almost seems like he's siding with" Republicans, said one top Democratic aide.
Read the full story at the link below:

Evan Bayh's exit comments irk Democrats - Manu Raju - POLITICO.com

EPA Chief: 15 Years With No Global Warming Doesn't Mean There's No Global Warming



Are you gonna believe your own mind or just accept what all the smart people in the Obama Administration are telling you? Would Al Gore lie to you? Just accept that global warming is a fact ... and have some more Kool Aid.

From an article by Karen Schuberg at CNSNews.com:
Fifteen years with no statistically significant increase in global temperatures does not mean that the human race is not causing the climate to change, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson told CNSNews.com on Tuesday.

Jackson reasserted her faith in manmade global warming in response to a question from CNSNews.com asking if she agreed with the recent statement by prominent climate scientist Phil Jones that there had been no statistically significant global warming since 1995.

Jackson also said "we need to move aggressively" to pass energy regulation legislation.

On Capitol Hill Tuesday, after a Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing, CNSNews.com asked Jackson if she agreed or disagreed with one of the world’s top climate-change scientists that there had been no statistically significant global warming for the past 15 years.

"Do you agree with Dr. Phil Jones, the former head of the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia, that there has been no statistically significant global warming since 1995?" CNSNews.com specifically asked.

Jackson responded: "I believe all the new information we have doesn’t lead to any different conclusion than what we reached in the Endangerment Finding. And that is that climate is changing and that mankind is responsible in part for that change, and that we need to move aggressively."
Read the full story here.

Obamacare II - A New Approach

PennDOT Readies for Major Winter Storm, Urges Motorists in Affected Areas to Avoid Unnecessary Travel

PennDOT Readies for Major Winter Storm, Urges Motorists in Affected Areas to Avoid Unnecessary Travel

White House privately plots 2012 campaign run

Having accomplished so much in his first year -- record unemployment, historic deficits, domestic terror attacks -- Barack Obama is plotting his re-election already. Good luck with that.

Exclusive: White House privately plots 2012 campaign run - Mike Allen - POLITICO.com

ABC Touts Mostly Liberal Examples of 'Enraged' and 'Livid' Health Care Protesters

When 1 million Americans marched on Washington last September, the networks were too busy to cover the event. Now a couple of far left loons gather and it's the top story.

ABC Touts Mostly Liberal Examples of 'Enraged' and 'Livid' Health Care Protesters | NewsBusters.org

Fatal Attraction: The Return of Obamacare

PA Gaming Control Board Cancels Hearing Due to Impending Inclement Weather

PA Gaming Control Board Cancels Hearing Due to Impending Inclement Weather

NRA's Annual Meetings & Exhibits 2010: A Celebration of American Values

NRA's Annual Meetings & Exhibits 2010: A Celebration of American Values

New Legislation to Reform Tax Code Includes Provisions to Legalize, Regulate and Tax Internet Gambling

New Legislation to Reform Tax Code Includes Provisions to Legalize, Regulate and Tax Internet Gambling

An alternative to Obamacare

A Twenty-Page Bill In Plain English to Reduce Premiums and Help Laid-Off Americans

New Sestak ad takes jab at Obama, Specter

This explains a lot

Joy Behar and Bill Maher Laugh About Dick Cheney's Heart Attack

Joy Behar and Bill Maher Laugh About Dick Cheney's Heart Attack | NewsBusters.org

Bozell Column: 'Broken' Government, When Liberals Lose

Bozell Column: 'Broken' Government, When Liberals Lose | NewsBusters.org

Seven Car Problems That Can Leave You Stranded and How to Prevent Them

Consumer Reports: Seven Car Problems That Can Leave You Stranded and How to Prevent Them

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

A case study in how to lose an election



A hilarious new political ad released by the Joe Hoeffel for Governor campaign proclaims Joe stands for "old-fashioned values" such as abortion-on-demand, gun control, same-sex marriage, protectionism and special breaks for unions.

This guy couldn't get elected in Massachusetts let alone Pennsylvania.

The final howler is when Hoeffel describes himself as "fiscally responsible."

Before Hoeffel took control of Montgomery County government in 2008, the county was a model of efficiency that other Pennsylvania counties could emulate. Montco government was so well run that the commissioners were able to cut property taxes while increasing services.

Under Hoeffel, Montgomery County has turned into an economic basket-case, facing deficits, layoffs and cuts in services. Cronyism is rampant as Hoeffel has hired all sorts of political allies to well-paying county jobs that didn't exist before Hoeffel came into the picture.

Now Hoeffel wants to do the same for Pennsylvania? Good luck with that.

Actually Hoeffel may be too late. His pal, Ed Rendell, has already bankrupted the state.

Prediction: Hoeffel will finish a distant third or maybe even fourth in the four-man race for the Democratic nomination for Pennsylvania governor.

Auditor General Jack Wagner: Pennsylvanians Missing Out on Property Tax Relief

Auditor General Jack Wagner: Potentially Hundreds of Thousands of Pennsylvanians Missing Out on Property Tax Relief

Money, Money, Money

From POLITICO:
The nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics estimates that candidates, political parties and interest groups will spend more than $3.7 billion on this fall’s midterm elections.

The estimate is based on a center analysis that found spending on federal midterm congressional elections typically increases every four years from 31 percent to 35 percent.

By that model, $3.7 billion is actually a conservative figure – as it is a 30 percent increase in spending from the 2006 congressional elections.

The estimate does not include likely spending by unions, corporations and other interests groups following a recent Supreme Court campaign finance ruling, lifting the ban on independent expenditures from outside groups.
Study: Midterms will cost $3.7 billion - Andy Barr - POLITICO.com

Video: 'How I Was Not Al Gored Into Submission'

Viguerie: Tea Party is New, Independent 4th Leg at Conservative Table

Viguerie: Tea Party is New, Independent 4th Leg at Conservative Table

Senate Jobs Bill Does Not Require that Employers Hire American Workers

Senate Jobs Bill Does Not Require that Employers Hire American Workers

ATR: The Individual Mandate Excise Tax is a Tax

From Americans for Tax Reform: No, not a "penalty", a "fee" or a "fine" - it is a tax - and it violates Obama's $250,000 tax pledge

ATR: The Individual Mandate Excise Tax is a Tax

Majority of Americans Want President to Use Veto Power

A new polls says nearly 83% of Americans support a presidential veto of legislation containing unnecessary Congressional spending. What are the chances Barack Obama would do that?

Majority of Americans Want President to Use Veto Power

Collegeville woman competes for Mrs. Pennsylvania title

A Collegeville woman, Sherri Xanthopoulos Russo, is planning to compete in the Mrs. Pennsylvania Pageant in March. Her platform is spreading awareness about thyroid cancer in women. Xanthopoulos Russo was diagnosed with cancer in 2008.

From a story by Leann Pettit published in The Phoenix:
Thyroid cancer is something that is very close to Russo's heart, as she was diagnosed with the disease in November of 2008 during a routine gynecological exam.

Russo's doctor had recently begun doing neck checks of all patients as part of the regular examination. As Mrs. Pennsylvania International, Russo hopes to spread awareness of thyroid cancer in women and it is her intention to encourage all gynecologists to make the neck exam a regular part of the examination.

If Russo is crowned Mrs. Pennsylvania International, she will continue on to Chicago for the Mrs. International Pageant in July.

Russo says she has always had a desire to model, but never really got the chance.
Xanthopoulos Russo is looking for sponsors.

Read the full story at The Phoenix Web site.

Obama's Addiction

Pennsylvania Budget Facts 2010

If you're looking for an objective look at spending in Pennsylvania, The Commonwealth Foundation is your best source of information.

The Commonwealth Foundation has released two new analyses of the Pennsylvania State Budget.
Pennsylvania State Budget Overview

* Think the state budget is only $29 billion? You might be surprised to learn that the total Pennsylvania operating budget is $66 billion, or $5,300 for every man, woman, and child.

* Think that the state government has a balanced budget, and therefore doesn't borrow like the federal government? Wrong! Pennsylvania state debt is $42 billion, an increase of 78% since Gov. Rendell took office. The state budget now includes over $1 billion on debt payments alone.
Get the Pennsylvania state budget overview here
Pennsylvania Spending by Department

* Have you heard that Gov. Rendell has slashed spending to the bone? In reality, he has increased the General Fund budget by 45%, or $9 billion, since taking office, more than double the rate of inflation.

* Think public schools and welfare are underfunded? Under Gov. Rendell, state spending on K-12 education increased 46%, and on Public Welfare by 68%
Get the facts on the state budget by department

For more on the Pennsylvania State Budget, visit CommonwealthFoundation.org/Budget

Michael Steele is spending like a Democrat

Is Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele a closet Democrat? He sure is spending a lot of money.

From POLITICO:
Republican National Chairman Michael Steele is spending twice as much as his recent predecessors on private planes and paying more for limousines, catering and flowers – expenses that are infuriating the party's major donors who say Republicans need every penny they can get for the fight to win back Congress.

Most recently, donors grumbled when Steele hired renowned chef Wolfgang Puck's local crew to cater the RNC's Christmas party inside the trendy Newseum on Pennsylvania Avenue, and then moved its annual winter meeting from Washington to Hawaii.

For some major GOP donors, both decisions were symbolic of the kind of wasteful spending habits they claim has become endemic to his tenure at the RNC. When Ken Mehlman served as the committee chairman during the critical 2006 midterm elections, the holiday party was held in a headquarters conference room and Chic-fil-A was the caterer.

A POLITICO analysis of expenses found that compared with 2005, the last comparable year preceding a midterm election, the committee’s payments for charter flights doubled; the number of sedan contractors tripled, and meal expenses jumped from $306,000 to $599,000.
Read the full story below:

Michael Steele's spending spree angers donors - Jeanne Cummings - POLITICO.com

Consumer Reports Names Six New Top Pick Cars for 2010

Consumer Reports Names Six New Top Pick Cars for 2010

2011 Pennsylvania Teacher of the Year Semifinalists

Pennsylvania Education Secretary Announces 2011 Pennsylvania Teacher of the Year Semifinalists

Rep. Fattah Proposes Tax To Pay Down National Debt

What's the Democrats solution to paying down the national debt that they've helped create by spending more money than the government takes in? Raise taxes, of course.

Congressman Chaka Fattah (D-PA) today introduced legislation that calls for a penny on every dollar on transactions in the United States economy to be directed to eliminating America's national debt.

I guess it never occurred to Fattah or any other Democrat to just stop spending or cut taxes to jump-start the economy.

Read more about Fattah's tax hike plan below:

America: A Debt Free Future

Scott Brown Fever Grows

Read His Lips: Obama Calls for Increasing Payroll Taxes on 'Households' Earning Less Than $250,000 Per Year

From CNSNews.com:
President Obama presented a new health care plan on Monday that calls for raising the Medicare payroll tax on some households earning less than $250,000, an apparent breach of his campaign pledge not to raise taxes on families earning less than that amount. The president’s plan also calls for increasing taxes on interest, dividends, annuities, royalties and rents.

In a Sept. 12, 2008 campaign speech in Dover, N.H, Obama said: "And I can make a firm pledge: Under my plan, no family making less than $250,000 will see their taxes increase—not your income taxes, not your payroll taxes, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes."

But the new health care plan released in summary form yesterday by the White House specifically calls for increasing the Medicare payroll tax on "households with incomes exceeding $200,000 for singles and $250,000 for married couples filing jointly."

Unless President Obama is prepared to say that the only type of "family" that qualifies as a "family" under his tax pledge is one that is formed around a "married couple filing jointly," then his new health care proposal violates his 2008 tax pledge on its face. The Internal Revenue Service, for example, makes clear that the "head of household" tax filing status is for "unmarried" taxpayers. A definition of the term "head of household" on the IRS Web site says: "Generally, you may claim head of household filing status on your tax return only if you are unmarried and pay more than 50% of the costs of keeping up a home for yourself and your dependent(s) or other qualifying individuals."
Read the full story at the link below:

CNSNews.com - Read His Lips: Obama Calls for Increasing Payroll Taxes on ‘Households’ Earning Less Than $250,000 Per Year

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Hey Keith Olbermann, Don't Mess With Texas

Olbermann Mocks Most Texans as 15 Million Wasted Minds | NewsBusters.org

Pro-Life Groups Blast Obama for Funding Abortions in His Health Care Plan

The $1 Trillion Obama Health Care Plan Sounds Familiar ... And Includes Taxpayer Funding For Abortions.

Pro-Life Groups Blast Obama for Funding Abortions in His Health Care Plan

Groups Demand Sen. Harry Reid Apologize for Sexist Remarks

Groups Demand Sen. Harry Reid Apologize for Sexist Remarks

Global Warming Surprise

Governor Rendell Orders Flags to Fly at Half-Staff in Honor of Lance Cpl. Larry M. Johnson of Scranton

Governor Rendell Orders Flags to Fly at Half-Staff in Honor of Lance Cpl. Larry M. Johnson of Scranton

Obamacare: The Sequel - Been There, Done That

New health care plan, but with the same old problems - Carrie Budoff Brown and Patrick O'Connor - POLITICO.com

Monday, February 22, 2010

Newspaper: Obama tops Bush at ducking reporters

So much for change. The most secretive and least accountable administration ever continues to break campaign promises ... and the lap dog liberal media just rolls over.

The Washington Times notes that Barack Obama has gone 215 consecutive days without a formal press conference.

From a Times' article by Joseph Curl:
President Obama, who pledged to establish the most open and transparent administration in history, on Monday surpasses his predecessor's record for avoiding a full-fledged question-and-answer session with White House reporters in a formal press conference.

President George W. Bush's longest stretch between prime-time, nationally televised press conferences was 214 days, from April 4 to Nov. 4, 2004. Mr. Obama tops that record on Monday, going 215 days - stretching back to July 22, according to records kept by CBS Radio's veteran reporter Mark Knoller.

The president has seemingly shunned formal, prime-time sessions since his last disastrous presser, when he said police in Cambridge, Mass., "acted stupidly" by arresting a Harvard professor who broke into a home that turned out to be his own. The off-the-cuff comment took over the news cycle for a week, overshadowing his push for health care reform, and culminated in a White House "Beer Summit," where the president hosted white police officer James Crowley and the black Harvard professor, Henry Louis Gates Jr.
Read the full story at the newspaper's Web site.

Pennsylvania Department of State Takes Disciplinary Actions

Pennsylvania Department of State Takes Disciplinary Actions Against 112 Licensed, Commissioned Professionals, Organizations

Gerlach criticizes return of Obamacare

U.S. Rep. Jim Gerlach (PA-6th District) issued the following statement Monday after the White House outlined its health care reform proposal that the American people have already rejected:
"After the House and Senate crafted legislation in secret last year, the American people demanded a second opinion on health care reform," Gerlach said. "But the White House proposal offers the same $1 trillion prescription that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid have been trying unsuccessfully to get the American people to swallow.

"While I am pleased the President has proposed removing the sweetheart deal known as the 'Cornhusker Kickback' for Nebraska, it is disappointing that higher taxes and more invasive government remain the backbone of this plan," Gerlach added. "Workers would pay a new tax on employer-provided health insurance and payroll taxes would climb under the White House plan. The constituents in my district – along with most Americans -- have made it clear that approach is unacceptable."

The New York Times reported that under the White House plan, a family earning about $88,000 a year would pay as much as 9.5 percent of their income toward annual health insurance premiums, or about $8,380 annually. That does not include out-of-pocket costs, such as co-payments or deductibles, according to the paper. And The Morning Call of Allentown cited a statewide poll showing 60 percent of Pennsylvanians want to scrap the House and Senate proposals and consider alternatives. In addition, a majority do not support the government requiring every citizen to buy health insurance.
Gerlach is a co-sponsor of a bipartisan proposal – known as the Small Business Options Health (SHOP) Act – that would increase competition among insurers by allowing consumers to purchase policies across state lines and permitting small businesses to form statewide pools to buy coverage for their employees.

Gerlach also supports the House Republican Medical Rights and Reform Act, which includes provisions to end costly lawsuit abuse and allows doctors and patients to continuing making decisions about the best treatments.

Columnist: 'Stimulus' Actually Raised Unemployment

Alan Reynolds, writing in Investor's Business Daily, makes a persuasive argument the Obama/Pelosi/Reid 'stimulus' bill was a complete bust, especially when it comes to creating jobs.

From his column:
The bill was launched last year amid grandiose promises of "shovel ready" make-work projects.

In reality, as the CBO explains, "five programs accounted for more than 80% of the outlays from ARRA in 2009: Medicaid, unemployment compensation, Social Security ... grants to state and local governments ... and student aid."

In other words, what was labeled a "stimulus" bill was actually a stimulus to government transfer payments — cash and benefits that are primarily rewards for not working, or at least not working too hard.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 had extended federally funded unemployment benefits by 53 weeks, and another bill in November added 20 more — bringing the total up to 99 weeks in states with high unemployment.

As the Federal Reserve's Open Market Committee minutes for January noted: "The several extensions of emergency unemployment insurance benefits appeared to have raised the measured unemployment rate, relative to levels recorded in past downturns, by encouraging some who have lost their jobs to remain in the labor force. ... Some estimates suggested it could account for 1 percentage point or more of the increase in the unemployment rate during this recession."
Read the full column at the link below:

Investors.com - The 'Stimulus' Actually Raised Unemployment

Dave Maloney and Dave Molony running for PA House seats

I received this amusing press release from the David M. Maloney for Berks 130th Campaign attempting to clear up some potential confusion about a candidate with a similar name running in a separate Legislative district.

Both are Republicans but Dave Maloney is seeking the nomination for the 130th District in eastern Berks County while Dave Molony is seeking the 133rd State House seat in Lehigh County and Northampton counties.

Here's the release:
Just when you thought all politicians were the same; one difference between Pennsylvania State Representative candidates in the 130th and the 133rd Districts could be ... vowels.

Dave Maloney of Pike Township and Dave Molony of Catasaqua, are running for State Representative in two different districts here in Eastern Pennsylvania.

"I met Dave at the House Republican Campaign Committee meeting last month. It will probably be some confusion when we both get to Harrisburg, but I've got a lot more hair than Dave," said Dave Maloney, Boyertown High School alum and former Oley Valley School Board member who is the 130th District candidate.

"We don't really think that the people in Berks and in Lehigh Valley will get confused. But I will say that we do expect to get right to work when we get elected in November and are sworn into the House of Representatives in Harrisburg in January of 2011," said Dave Molony, running for the 133rd.

Dave Maloney said he see the economy and jobs as the issues at the top of the list of concerns for people. "I have never seen business this slow, people hurting so badly. Harrisburg has to knock down all the barriers to letting companies do business and hire for new jobs." He added that he "supports all efforts to eliminate property taxes in Pennsylvania and bring real accountability to public schools."

"Governor Rendell's budget increase is over two billion dollars. At the same time more people are buying less and paying less income taxes because they are laid off or working part time. How does the governor expect to spend more money when the state has less to spend and a set of huge increases coming down the road from pensions and other promises Rendell made? We need the determination to make hard choices and say no to expanding government programs and spending. It is not possible to tax people into prosperity," Maloney said.
In the photo above, that's Dave Maloney on the left, Dave Molony on the right.

For more on Maloney's bid to replace incumbent state Rep. David Kessler, check out this article or visit Maloney's campaign Web site.

Molony is seeking to replace incumbent Democratic state Rep. Joseph F. Brennan. For more information on Molony, check out this article or visit his campaign Web site.

Video: NewsBusted

Poll: 86 percent say government 'broken'

Only 86% think government is broken? The other 14% must work for the government.

Poll: 86 percent say government 'broken' - Andy Barr - POLITICO.com

ATR: Obama Health Plan Is a Net Tax Hike of $629 Billion

Obamacare is back from the dead ... and so are massive tax hikes to pay for the government-run health plan, says Americans for Tax Relief.

ATR: Obama Health Plan Is a Net Tax Hike of $629 Billion

Brent Bozell: 'God Bless Bloggers'

MRC President Brent Bozell: 'God Bless Bloggers' | NewsBusters.org

Caused by Global Warming

You can't kill it - Obamacare is back

President Obama releases health reform proposal - Carrie Budoff Brown - POLITICO.com

Never Let Your Guard Down With Your Credit Cards

Never Let Your Guard Down With Your Credit Cards

George Will sheds light on the 'global warming industry'

Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist George F. Will examines the growing evidence that most of the "science" behind the theory of global warming is more fiction than science in his latest column.

Here's part of what Will writes:
Global warming alarmists, long cosseted by echoing media, manifest an interesting incongruity -- hysteria and name calling accompanying serene assertions about the "settled science" of climate change. Were it settled, we would be spared the hyperbole that amounts to Ring Lardner's "Shut up, he explained."

The global warming industry, like Alexander in the famous children's story, is having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. Actually, a bad three months, which began Nov. 19 with the publication of e-mails indicating attempts by scientists to massage data and suppress dissent in order to strengthen "evidence" of global warming.

But there already supposedly was a broad, deep and unassailable consensus. Strange.

Next came the failure of The World's Last -- We Really, Really Mean It -- Chance, aka the Copenhagen climate change summit. It was a nullity, and since then things have been getting worse for those trying to stampede the world into a spasm of prophylactic statism.

In 2007, before the economic downturn began enforcing seriousness and discouraging grandstanding, seven Western U.S. states (and four Canadian provinces) decided to fix the planet on their own. California's Arnold Schwarzenegger intoned, "We cannot wait for the United States government to get its act together on the environment." The 11 jurisdictions formed what is now called the Western Climate Initiative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, starting in 2012.

Or not. Arizona's Gov. Jan Brewer recently suspended her state's participation in what has not yet begun. Some Utah legislators are reportedly considering a similar action. She worries, sensibly, that it would impose costs on businesses and consumers. She also ordered reconsideration of Arizona's strict vehicle emission rules, modeled on incorrigible California's, lest they raise the cost of new cars.

Last week, BP America, ConocoPhillips and Caterpillar, three early members of the 31-member U.S. Climate Action Partnership, said: Oh, never mind. They withdrew from USCAP. It is a coalition of corporations and global warming alarm groups that was formed in 2007 when carbon rationing legislation seemed inevitable and collaboration with the rationers seemed prudent.

Said a spokesman for Conoco: "We need to spend time addressing the issues that impact our shareholders and consumers." What a concept.
Read the full column, "Blinded by science," here.

More lipstick, same pig

Possible Orchestration of Anti-Toyota Campaign Makes DOT Spokesperson's ACORN-y Background 'Very Telling'

Possible Orchestration of Anti-Toyota Campaign Makes DOT Spokesperson's ACORN-y Background 'Very Telling' | NewsBusters.org

Matthews: We're Learning Obama Can't Change Things With Just The Power Of His Personality

Matthews: We're Learning Obama Can't Change Things With Just The Power Of His Personality | NewsBusters.org

Sunday, February 21, 2010

PA government in three words: Regressive, Insular, Corrupt

If you haven't been paying attention to the Bonusgate trial of former House Democratic leader Mike Veon, you should.

Columnist Brad Bumsted says the testimony about the elaborate criminal enterprise allegedly set up by Veon and others inside the Capitol is appalling.

"Every Pennsylvania taxpayer should be furious," Bumsted writes.

Bumsted has written extensively on Bonusgate and this week's column focuses on testimony by Scott Brubaker, a former state House aide.

From Bumsted's column:
The secrecy was "exactly why we did it. You could get a bonus, and you didn't have to disclose it," said Brubaker. House Rule 14 didn't require that bonuses be publicly disclosed, he said.

"We would not report something we didn't have to report," Brubaker testified.

Right. Of course, you never tell the taxpayers how their money actually is being spent.

That statement by Brubaker accurately summarizes why Pennsylvania state government is regressive, insular and, to a certain extent, corrupt.

We have a Right to Know Law that will enable people to get some records never available before -- if you ask the right questions. Outside of the basics, the Legislature isn't covered on certain documents (such as e-mails).

And here was this ex-House staffer, who might be going to prison, talking about how they conspired to keep taxpayers in the dark about spending $1.4 million.

Meanwhile, the three-year compensation total for the Brubaker household, salaries and bonuses, courtesy of taxpayers, was $692,243.

What's galling is the hubris of Scott Brubaker, Mike Manzo, the former Democratic Caucus chief of staff, and Veon's former chief of staff, Jeffrey Foreman, who told the jury about ways they tried to keep information away from the public.

When the bonuses were revealed in January 2007, the House Democrat PR machine, day after day, insisted there were no bonuses for campaign work. Yet seven former staffers, including the Brubakers, Manzo and Foreman, have now pleaded guilty to participating in that scheme.

The real crime, however, was deceiving the taxpayers.
Read the full column at the newspaper's Web site.

'Shutter Island' tops weekend box office

Martin Scorsese's "Shutter Island," starring Leonardo DiCaprio, topped the box office this weekend with an estimated $40.2 million, according to BoxOfficeMojo.com

The thriler knocked last week's top film, "Valentine's Day," to No. 2 while a little film called "Avatar" continues to add to its record-breaking run, finishing the weekend at No. 3, with another $16.1 million, bringing its total domestic gross to $687.8 million.

Yes, it appears that "Avatar" will become the only film to earn $700 million in domestic receipts.
WEEKEND TOP 5 STUDIO ESTIMATES, FEBRUARY 19-21, 2010

Rank. Movie Title (Distributor)
Weekend Gross | Theaters | Total Gross | Week #

1. Shutter Island (Paramount)
$40.2 million | 2,991 | $40.2 million | 1

2. Valentine's Day (Warner Bros.)
$17.2 million | 3,665 | $87.4 million | 2

3. Avatar (Fox)
$16.1 million | 2,581 | $687.8 million | 10

4. Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief (Fox)
$15.3 million | 3,396 | $58.8 million | 2

5. The Wolfman (Universal)
$9.8 million | 3,223 | $50.3 million | 2

RetireSafe Survey Says Seniors Are Struggling With Increased Costs Without Social Security COLA

RetireSafe Survey Says Seniors Are Struggling With Increased Costs Without an Increased Social Security Cost of Cost of Living Adjustment

Congress Should Reject Obama Administration's Latest Earmarking & Diversion Plan for Highway Funds

Congress Should Reject Obama Administration's Latest Earmarking & Diversion Plan for Highway Funds

More Obama Logic

Boos as Ron Paul wins CPAC straw poll

Boos as Ron Paul wins CPAC straw poll - Jonathan Martin and Jessica Taylor - POLITICO.com

Glenn Beck Delivers Keynote Speech To Enthusiastic CPAC

Glenn Beck Delivers Keynote Speech To Enthusiastic CPAC | NewsBusters.org

Friday, February 19, 2010

Newspaper: Cut size of the Legislature to reduce state spending

Gov. Ed Rendell claims there is no place left to cut in the 2010-11 General Budget, which increases state spending by more than $1 billion.

But the Delaware County Daily Times had no problem finding ways to save taxpayers some money. Start by cutting the size of the Pennsylvania Legislature, the most expensive in the nation.

From a recent editorial:
More than “looking at reducing the size of the Legislature,” cutting the number of lawmakers and their support staffs should be the first order of business.

None of the following facts are news. Pennsylvania has 253 legislators — more than any of the largest states in the nation, including California and New York. The one state with more elected officials, New Hampshire, doesn’t really count since its 424 legislators earn $200 for a two-year term with no per diems.

Each of California’s 120 legislators earn more than Pennsylvania’s, but California’s salary total is still less than this state’s. On top of salary, our legislators’ benefits include per diem fees, health care, car rental, and, perhaps the most important perk about to hit Pennsylvania taxpayers in their pocketbooks — pensions.

Districts across Pennsylvania face massive increases in contributions to public school employees’ pension plans, starting this year.

In 2001, lawmakers wanted to hike their pensions by 50 percent. You read that correctly — 50 percent. In order to help that deal fly, legislators made a pact with school unions and boosted their employees’ pensions by 25 percent.

Now taxpayers are left holding the bag. Workers who lost jobs or pensions or watched employer-matched 401(k)s drop in half, Social Security recipients who will see no monetary increase for two years, employees still working but with pay cuts and health-care cost hikes — all will be responsible to refill the pension coffers of those already supported by taxpayer dollars.
Read the full editorial, "Cutting size of Legislature a smart move," at the newspaper's Web site.

Congressional Dump

The Obama Kiss of Death



Barack Obama campaigned for Democrat Creigh Deeds in the Virginia governor's race ... and Deeds lost.

Barack Obama campaigned for Democrat Jon Corzine in the New Jersey governor's race ... and Corzine lost his bid for re-election.

Barack Obama campaigned for Martha Coakley in the Massachusetts U.S. Senate race ... and Coakley lost to underdog Scott Brown.

Today, Barack Obama campaigned for embattled Senate Leader Harry Reid, who is trying to win re-election in his native Nevada. Good luck with that.

Climategate fallout: UN Climate Chief Quits

Climate-What? As UN Climate Chief Quits, AP Throws Pity Party; PJM's Rosett Applies Reality Check | NewsBusters.org

Sheetz CEO targets 'ridiculous laws' still on the books in PA

The Following is a Statement From Stan Sheetz, President & CEO, Sheetz, Inc.

PEMA Urges Residents to Clear Storm Drains, Prepare Now For Possible Flooding

PEMA Urges Residents to Clear Storm Drains, Prepare Now For Possible Flooding

Tiger out of the Woods with Majority of Viewers Reporting Apology was Sincere

Tiger out of the Woods with Majority of Viewers Reporting Apology was Sincere

Justice Department and FBI Announce Formal Conclusion of Investigation into 2001 Anthrax Attacks

After nine years and hundreds of millions of dollars, how convenient that the only suspect in the 2001 Anthrax attacks that terrorized the nation is a guy who committed suicide. I'm sure this case will be put to rest ... just like the Kennedy assassination.

Justice Department and FBI Announce Formal Conclusion of Investigation into 2001 Anthrax Attacks

Pennsylvania: State of Debt



From the editorial pages of The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review:
State of Debt

Pennsylvania's mounting debt ranks the state 35th in the nation and earned it a dubious two-star rating from Forbes.com (one star being the worst on a scale of four stars). Even at that, the Keystone State's sad rating doesn't tell the full story.

The Forbes report estimates state debt at $950 per capita. For the sake of comparison, that puts the commonwealth in the company of West Virginia and Maine. East Coast states faring worse include New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Massachusetts.

But there's more, as the Commonwealth Foundation reveals. Factor in debt by local governments and state agencies and the tab per Pennsylvanian comes to almost $10,000.

Then there's the state's pension pinch -- which is more like a poke in the eye.

That time bomb is ticking down to a 2012-13 explosion for taxpayers. As a result of a boneheaded pension increase for state and school district employees in 2001, miserably misguided policies and deferred increases in payments after market losses, the pension bite is projected to increase by $1,360 per household, according to a Commonwealth analysis.

Pennsylvania's on the wrong course. More reckless spending, debt and unfunded pension liabilities shouldn't drop the state to a one-star rating before Pennsylvania's leaders pull their heads from the sand and change direction.

Dismal Poll is Layoff Notice for Members of Congress

A new group trying to organize 31 million unemployed Americans could be a new force in American politics.

Dismal Poll is Layoff Notice for Members of Congress -- WASHINGTON, Feb. 18 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --

Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner Offers Tips for Claims Related to Winter Storms

Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner Offers Tips for Claims Related to Winter Storms

Pennsylvania's Safe Haven Program Offers Confidential Option to Protect Newborns, Prevent Abandonment

Pennsylvania's Safe Haven Program Offers Confidential Option to Protect Newborns, Prevent Abandonment

Speeding to oblivion

Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board Approves New Regulations for the Training and Play of Table Games

Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board Approves New Regulations for the Training and Play of Table Games

Video: Who Is Sam Rohrer?

Newspaper: Thorns to Hoeffel, Matthews for politics as usual

From the editorial page of The Pottstown Mercury:
THORNS to Montgomery County Commissioners James R. Matthews and Joseph P. Hoeffel, whose contract awards to campaign contributors are continuing the pay-to-play culture that prevailed in the county for years. Officials admitted Feb. 4 they had not sent out solicitations for lawyers to handle a $35 million bond deal, a requirement for professional service contracts under a county ordinance. The law had been put in place in 1998 as a safeguard against political patronage in contracting. Hoeffel, a proponent of the ordinance 12 years ago, is now accused of ignoring the rule along with Matthews and solicitor Barry Miller. County Controller Diane Morgan on Thursday threatened to withhold payment on any professional services contracts that run afoul of the county's law, she wrote in a letter Wednesday to Commissioner Bruce L. Castor Jr. The accusations between Castor and the Matthews-Hoeffel alliance are flying fast and furiously. Meanwhile, these three have a county to run. Let's consider good government over petty politics as a change of pace.
Read more at the newspaper's Web site.

Is Your Boss Younger Than You?

A new CareerBuilder survey finds that 43 percent of workers ages 35 and older said they currently work for someone younger than them.

From the survey:
Workers reported that there are a variety of reasons why working for someone younger than them can be a challenge, including:

* They act like they know more than me when they don't
* They act like they're entitled and didn't earn their position
* They micromanage
* They play favorites with younger workers
* They don't give me enough direction
Read more at the link below:

More Than Four-in-Ten Workers Over the Age of 35 Currently Work for a Younger Boss, Finds New CareerBuilder Survey

CPAC embraces the new Mitt Romney

CPAC embraces the new Mitt Romney - Ben Smith - POLITICO.com

Liberal Media Bias 101

Funny how the crazy guy who crashed his airplane into a building must be a conservative and Tea Party supporter, but the far left, Obama-loving college professor who killed three fellow academics hardly gets a mention in the Mainstream Media.

WaPo's Capehart: Austin Suicide Pilot's 'Alienation Similar To Extreme Elements of Tea Party Movement' | NewsBusters.org

CNN Omits Stack's Communist Sympathies

CNN's Sanchez and Velshi Omit Stack's Communist Sympathies | NewsBusters.org

Thursday, February 18, 2010