Saturday, March 31, 2012

Lotto Fever.

Sure, the jackpot for the Mega Millions lottery is an all-time high of $640 million – and ticket sales on Friday are through the roof. But winning brings its own complications. Read on.

California is seeking NEW wealthy people to win the Lotto Maga Millions Jackpot . At the Same time Gov. Jerry Brown is looking to Tax Millionaires, or anyone that makes over 250,000 $ . I want to write what Good old Pres. Obama said about the Lottery  . Sure enough he's right on this one,  here is what he said :

Appearing on the public TV program “Chicago Tonight,” then-State Sen. Obama argued that the lottery is not a good way to spend money, especially for the poor.
One of the concerns that I have, obviously, is that a disproportionate number of people who consistently buy lottery tickets tend to be lower-income and working-class people who can least afford it,” he said. “Even if they’re not compulsive gamblers, they are probably spending money that they don’t necessarily have.”
 Obama also suggested that state lotteries’ marketing practices made them complicit in fleecing the low-income crowd.

“Now, we might say that this is their entertainment dollar the same way that somebody else has entertainment dollar and spends it on a movie,” he said. “But I think the fact that the state systematically targets what we know to be lower income persons as a way of raising revenue is troublesome.
“I would argue that if you look at it as a whole, in most states across the board, this tends to be a form of regressive taxation, and I don’t think it’s necessarily the fairest way for us to raise revenue for us in the state, he said.

The Mad rush to buy the Maga million ticket is not a good way to spend your money even if it's a dollar . I know some persons who spent hundreds and thousands for the winning ticket  . As suckers , the odds are always 1 to 2 million that you'll have have the winning numbers , the more you buy your odds go up 2 % if you calculate it right. The Lottery in California is a government con-game , they want you to buy tickets so you would support Public Education , which hardly gets any of the  money . K-12 Districts are going to get only 100 million out of it , and spread it to 1100 school districts . Which has drastically cut Billions over the years . It's almost chump change . The Lucky winner (s) will probably end up getting taxed by Jerry Brown if he get's his way this November


Others say what's tragic is that more people don’t pay heed to the miniscule chance of winning the Mega Millions. According to lottery officials, the odds of possessing the winning ticket are 1 in 176 million – meaning an individual would be more likely to get hit by lightning or be eaten by a shark. One statistician notes that the Chicago Cubs have a better chance of winning the World Series this year.
“People know there are long odds,” says Scott Hoover, a professor of business administration at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Va. “But people are irrational in buying. They see it as a form of entertainment because if you look at it as an investment, it’s a horrible thing to do.”
Some buyers are well aware that winning is a very remote possibility. At New York’s Port Authority bus terminal, Henry Wallace is among the lottery players lined up Friday at a Hudson News kiosk.
“I figure it’s about the same as the chances of Nicole Kidman walking into the Port Authority and handing me an Oscar,” says Mr. Wallace, who works for the Bergen County (New Jersey) government. “But why not? It’s just a dollar and a dream.”
But this week, for every American who sees buying a ticket as a waste of good money, there's another who is eager to be parted from his or her earnings. The pace at which Mega Millions tickets have been selling is phenomenal. Since Tuesday, Mr. Hoover estimates, people have spent about $600 million on tickets – and perhaps as much as $1.2 billion since the last winner on Jan. 24. In Massachusetts, tickets were selling at the rate of 14,000 per minute on Friday, says Beth Bresnahan, a spokeswoman for the Massachusetts Lottery.
“This is unprecedented,” says Ms. Bresnahan. “The scale of this thing is driving the increase. People are coming out of the woodwork.”

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Where's the Amber Alert?

Missing Teenage girl proves how helpless law enforcement is for the missing. Clueless .

A young teenage girl goes missing . A search party is scrambled hoping to find Sierra LaMar, she  as lately  reported by authorities may have been abducted. Just where was the Amber Alert? I don't remember hearing one on TV or the radio , but I might be wrong . Something is a bit twisted here . If I were a psychic I would have used cadaver dogs at her parents house first . Follow a trail. The fact also that Sierra's father is a registered sex offender too gives a bit of a bizarre twist to this tale.  Did she get into a car with a Male friend she knew. Not trying to be insensitive to this , but remember Scott Peterson ?Investigators are now saying they believe whoever abducted 15-year-old Sierra LaMar mostly likely knew her or, at the very least, was acquainted with her. What's more, they said her kidnapper was probably familiar with the area near her Morgan Hill home where LaMar was last seen on March 16.Investigators, who have searched all nearby bodies of water, said they do not believe her kidnapper planned this in advance; this seems to have been a crime of opportunity, NBC reportsPolice tell reporters this morning that witnesses claim to have seen a girl who looks similar to LaMar hitchhiking along Holohan Road in Watsonville on Sunday. A witness called 911 yesterday to report what they had seen: A girl, wearing all black, with backpacks, get into a black truck on on East Lake Avenue.The girl reportedly got into a black "lifted" pickup with a work rack. The driver of the truck was a white man in his 20s with shoulder-length blond hair, investigators said.  The truck was last seen about 4 p.m. heading toward Airport Boulevard. Police went out to the scene, but found no clues that might lead them to the girl.

Last week, police found the Morgan Hill teen's Juicy purse on the side of the road just a few miles from her house. Inside, folded neatly, were a pair of her pants, underwear, and a San Jose Sharks shirt that LaMar's mother believes her daughter was wearing the morning she was last seen. Police set up a roadblock the next day, quizzing drivers about what they might have seen the morning of March 16, when LaMar supposed to be walking to her bus stop for school.

If you have any information about Sierra LaMar please call (408) 808-4500 during business hours, (408) 299-2311 after hours, or the anonymous tip line at (408) 808-4431. Text messages can be sent to (408) 421-6760. E-mail tips to


The fact that her purse was found with her clothes "folded neatly" inside is incredibly creepy to me. Unless she was OCD and a neat freak, I don't think she would have done this.
I'm still shocked that this school, and many high schools in the Bay Area, do not notify parents of an unexcused absence right away, once the first period/class is missed. Universities, because of Virginia Tech, now have automatic warnings sent to email, voicemail, and by text message, if there is any sort of the crime that occurs on campus. This was a child, not an adult, that did not show up. Something needs to change, because if her mother had been notified within 2 hours that her daughter had not shown up, and from their records no one called in to excuse her for being sick, I imagine the mother would have called police asap, as she did when she found out her daughter did not come home. Whoever took her had 10+ hours, and enough time to dispose of her purse and cell phone in 2 different places. I know it's high school, but these are teenagers, not adults. I would want to know ASAP if my child missed a class and it was not excused or expected.....There are too many missing children and its 80% parents fault.Kids less than 10 are mostly kidnapped, kids between 14 - 17 run away the most. The parents must teach their children when they were young on two things : 1) Always go in a group min 2 people for safety, never get in a car of strangers, need to let your without let parent know who you are going with especially at night. 2) Teach the kids if they are mad go to a relatives home ( cousin, grandma ) not to a friend because many times they bring bring more problems.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Health care law brawl

 For all it's worth Obama-care has it's good and bad sides.
For all the lofty legal wrangling that's expected at this week's historic arguments over President Obama's health care law, the story of two families running their own business helps boil the Supreme Court case down to its core.
It is a rare and historic case, one that will impact most Americans and potentially a presidential race. 
The ruling, expected in early summer, will come about four months before voters decide whether to give Obama a second term. Every Republican presidential candidate has spoken at length to countless campaign audiences about wanting to repeal the law. It's a guaranteed applause line. Obama enjoys similar approval when he defends the law in front of friendly audiences. Yet he gave it a passing mention during his most recent State of the Union address and let Friday's two-year anniversary pass with only a paper statement: "Today, two years after we passed health care reform, more young adults have insurance, more seniors are saving money on their prescription drugs, and more Americans can rest easy knowing they won't be dropped from their insurance plans if they get sick." Perhaps the relatively modest outreach from the White House makes sense given that poll numbers consistently show Americans aren't thrilled with the law.52 % of Americans oppose the law. While 23 % approve .As Republicans and Democrats alike commemorate the two-year anniversary of the signing of the health care bill today, a more significant battle awaits in the U.S. Supreme Court next week.
And some Republicans are worried that their big challenge to Obama’s health care law could backfire come election time.Obama, of course, does not want to see his signature initiative overturned by the Supreme Court, which holds oral arguments on the bill next week and should render a decision by late June. And Republicans who have long railed against the bill would certainly be overjoyed to see the bill struck down.Republicans already hate the law, and if it gets struck down, there’s nothing to unite against. Obama may pay a price from his political capital for enacting a law that is eventually declared unconstitutional, but all of a sudden, the bogeyman disappears, and the GOP loses one of its top rallying cries.The Democratic base, meanwhile, would be incensed at the Supreme Court, which has generally tilted 5-to-4 in favor of conservatives on contentious issues, and could redouble its efforts to reelect Obama so that he could fill whatever Supreme Court vacancies may arise.On the flip side, if the law is upheld, Republicans’ No. 1 priority — repealing the health care law — is still on the table, and Obama, while his law remains intact, still has to try and explain to a skeptical public why the law isn’t so bad. In other words, pretty much the status quo.


What I heard on the Newshour yesterday from someone speaking for Obamacare, was that of the uninsured, only 2/3 would be helped by Obamacare. (1) Medicaid eligibility would be expanded; and (2) if you still make too much to qualify for Medicaid, then insurance exchanges will be set up and you will be given federal subsidies to help you purchase insurance. You must buy insurance, and if you don't a penalty will be imposed and collected via your federal income tax return. 

Here's a look at the case and the law, by the numbers:
734 Days
It will be almost exactly two years from the time Obama signed the health care law until the Supreme Court hears the first oral arguments on it.
7 Lawyers
Seven lawyers will appear before the court to argue all sides of the complex case.
6 Hours
The court has allotted six hours for oral arguments, the longest time given to one case in the past 45 years. The last time the court heard this many hours of oral arguments in one case was in 1967 when lawyers argued for eight hours.
26 States
More than half the states have joined a lawsuit led by Florida's attorney general against the Obama administration.
3 Cases
The challenge to the Affordable Care Act is broken into three separate cases: Department of Health and Human Services v. Florida, National Federation of Independent Business v. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, and Florida v. Department of Health and Human Services.
2 Courts
Two appellate courts have ruled that the individual mandate, which requires people to have health insurance by 2014 or face a penalty, is constitutional. One court struck down the mandate and another dismissed the case against it.
67 Percent
Two-thirds of Americans said the Supreme Court should strike down either the individual mandate or the entire health care law, according to an ABC News/Washington Post poll released last week.
$1.08 Trillion
The Congressional Budget Office estimated that the Affordable Care Act would cost more than $1 trillion over 10 years.
$48 billion
The price tag for caring for uninsured patients was $48 billion in 2008, a cost that was passed on to doctors, insurance companies and people who did have insurance.
50 Million
More than 50 million Americans did not have health insurance in 2011.
26 Years Old
Under the Affordable Care Act, young people can stay on their parent's insurance until age 26.
10 percent
The health care law includes a 10 percent tax on indoor tanning.



Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Florida’s Wrongful Shooting.

The wrongful death of a teenager may not have been motivated  by race , but justice is vary blind.

Florida’s 2005 “Stand Your Ground” law, which says a citizen doesn’t have to retreat before using deadly force against an attacker, could throw a legal wrinkle into the case of a neighborhood watch captain who shot to death an unarmed black teenager.Police in the central Florida town of Sanford have said that 28-year-old George Zimmerman claims he shot 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in self-defense during a confrontation in a gated community. Police have described Zimmerman as white; his family says he is Hispanic and not racistIf indicted, Zimmerman can raise the Stand Your Ground defense under the 2005 law signed by Gov. Jeb Bush. That legislation, derisively called the “Shoot First” law by its critics, gives Floridians the right to use deadly force to defend themselves in public places without first trying to escape. The National Rifle Association lobbied hard for the bill, saying it would allow citizens to better protect themselves from violent crime -- A girl who overheard part of an incident involving Florida teenager Trayvon Martin can help prove he was killed "in cold blood," an attorney for Martin's family said Tuesday.The girl, who was dating the 17-year-old, "completely blows (George) Zimmerman's absurd self-defense claim out of the water," Benjamin Crump told reporters.He said the girl -- who he said does not wish to be identified -- "connects the dots" to describe what happened that day when she lays out what she overheard while on the phone with himIn an affidavit, the girlfriend, who is 16, said that Trayvon expressed concern to her that someone was following him, according to Mr. Crump. He said the girlfriend urged Trayvon to run home. In response, he said Trayvon replied, “I think I lost him” and then moments later told her, “He is right behind me again. I’m not going to run, I’m going to walk fast.”.

The key section of the law states:
A person who is not engaged in an unlawful activity and who is attacked in any other place where he or she has a right to be has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his or her ground and meet force with force, including deadly force if he or she reasonably believes it is necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony."


Race will now  really matter in this case. Thanks to a nutcase with a gun. A grown man targeted a teen for whatever reason and killed him. It appears the teen was innocent and that the adult used extremely poor judgement in his handling of the situation. The facts will all come out but if I'm leaning in one direction it is that the adult acted improperly.This needs more than just investigation. The Florida law which allows a (possibly slightly wacko) guy to run around a neighborhood carrying a gun, thinking he is protecting people, looking very like a vigilante, needs to be changed.Zimmerman clearly has some mental issues, he called 911 several times previously to this event, also over non-emergencies. This isn't a race issue, it's a crazy issue. Granted, it's impossible to know if he had any ulterior motives, but the way he followed and shot the boy makes it sound like he was simply a deranged person with extreme paranoia. I hope the Martins find peace when Zimmerman is brought to justice and I hope this tragedy, along with other recent preventable tragedies, signals the need for more intensive psychiatric screening when purchasing a deadly weapon. The amount of grief and lives unnecessarily stolen should be taken with the utmost seriousness in this country, where so many other trivial matters are scrutinized to no end.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Clooney's Cause.

Even in the times of silent films, stars appealed to political figures due to the public’s admiration for them. While I applaud anyone who is willing to commit selfless deeds to better society, few make an actual difference. George Clooney, who has committed himself to helping the Sudanese people, could make a real change in U.S. foreign policy
Actor George Clooney has been a political activist for a long time. He was recently arrested outside the Sudanese embassy in Washington for protesting the country's blockage of food and aid from entering the Nuba Mountain area of the country. George Clooney also raised his voice against the maltreatment of Sudanese by their own government.
According to reports, George Clooney's father was also with him during the protest, and he was also arrested. George Clooney's father, Nick Clooney, 78, is a journalist who is an ardent activist himself. I find that courageous that Clooney stood up , and made his stand to speak out. The "problem" is that our own Government flip flops it's policy  regarding whom it want 's to "help" . America Can't be the police , and be every where . As it is now . It has been a bit too late for Sudan , our American dollars have been squandered on Iraq and Afghanistan to "rebuild" those countries , while turning a blind eye on the rest. I would encourage Mr. Clooney to go to Congress make his plea , before our troops are sent to Syria or to gave battle to Iran.


Here is some data on Sudan , I thought it might interest the readers . You might like to know how big Oil is involved through China "China has a $20 billion oil infrastructure in the Sudan. They get 6 percent of their oil imported from the Sudan. And the South Sudan has the oil and North Sudan has the refineries, and North Sudan was taking that money from the oil and not giving it back and buying weapons to hurt the South. So about six weeks ago, the South said, ‘OK, we’re done.’ And they shut off the oil," Clooney said in a CNN interview..

It has also been reported that the Sudanese government has blocked relief efforts to help the starving Sudanese in the region.
"What’s going on right there is exactly what we saw in the beginning of Darfur," Clooney said. "All three men charged with war crimes at The Hague are the same three who are now bombing indiscriminate innocent civilians with Antonov planes with 300-millimeter Chinese rockets.
It has now switched from being a humanitarian cause to an economic burden for China and the United States. Since China has lost its oil imports form Sudan, it will find them somewhere else, which will cause global prices to increase and affect gas prices here in the states.
This allows U.S. officials to gain diplomatic support from China and ultimately put pressure on the Sudanese government.


George Clooney seems to have one of the most charitable hearts in Hollywood, and, alongside his current mission to stop the human rights atrocities in the Darfur region of Sudan, he focuses much of his energy on helping those suffering from poverty.
Clooney famously founded Not On Our Watch with his Ocean’s 11 co-stars Don Cheadle, Matt Damon, and Brad Pitt, and producer Jerry Weintraub. The organization’s main goal is to stop the genocide occurring in Sudan. Clooney has visited the area personally, and spoken with victims of rape and torture. His charity has donated millions of dollars to help those suffering in the region, with much of the funding going through the United Nations World Food Programme.
The Ocean’s 13 leading man offered his company at the movie’s première and private after-party for an auction supporting Realizing the Dream. This non-profit seeks to continue the legacy and work of Dr. and Mrs. King in wiping out poverty and injustice.
Clooney has been known to give generous donations to homeless people, is a supporter of Bono’s poverty-fighting ONE Campaign, and is also on the Board of Trustees for the United Way.
George donated $25,000 to writers during the 2007 strike.
Clooney took part in the America: A Tribute to Heroes charity telethon for victims of 9/11.
Clooney visited the Nuba Mountains with ENOUGH Project to document atrocities of the Sudanese government on its own people, and testified about it before the US Senate Committee, days before getting arrested at the Sudanese embassy in DC in a peaceful protest.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Saving Obama..............

The what ifs. 
How do you save a President ? Our first African American President . Mr. Obama . I have put that to question , and have to give an alternative that would have silenced  all the Obama critics . Mr. Obama should have been a Republican . Obama for sure will earn a place in American history books , but what he did for America will be determined if he is lucky enough to win a second term, and survive the next couple of months worth of depressing news that will hit the media. The news that gas prices are hitting hard ( harder in California ) , the slow job growth and worst the economic news is has not proven much as the polls show the President at a 41 % approval rating . His electability is challenging for him . If he win's a second term I'd say "God Bless him & Good Luck" I am serious . I believe NO one can run America anymore with all the bickering going on with Congress always gridlocked . Another piece of INFORMATION has come to light and it's sure enough to cause a spitfire for President Obama . The fate of Osama bin Laden's remains have been called into question after emails leaked from an intelligence analysis firm say the body of the terror leader was actually sent to the U.S. for cremation.Terrorist: Osama bin Laden was killed on May 1, 2011 in the now-famous raid by Navy SEAL Team Six at his secret Pakistan compound According to the emails, the Al Qaeda boss was shot and killed during the famous Navy SEAL Team Six raid on his compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, was transported back to the U.S. and cremated. The emails were allegedly obtained by the hacker group Anonymous from Stratford, an organization dealing with analysis of intelligence and geopolitical analysis. Remember that Obama had Osama buried as Sea to honor an Islamic custom , we did not see his corpse as far as photo's as we all saw Saddam Hussian  & Quadaffi proof photo's . No Osama . No Proof.  I also see the President Struggling to get re-elected , but he as yet is to throw that pitch line that will get most voters to jump . Right now he stands on a thin line with most Democrats , and the Most liberal pundits .

The Polls :
When it comes to how Americans view President Obama going into the new year, there appears to be very little spirit of Auld Lang Syne. Instead, according to the new Washington Whispers poll, many voters aren't forgetting what they dislike about Obama and want him out of office.
In our New Year's poll, when asked what news event they fear most about 2012, Americans by a margin of two-to-one said Obama's reelection. Only 16 percent said they fearthe Democrat won't win a second term, while 33 percent said they fear four more years. [Check out the top political events of 2011]Next to Obama's reelection, 31 percent of Americans said they feared higher taxes, which may be proof that the president's focus on the payroll tax cut has hit paydirt.The poll, however, held out some hope for Obama. Some 38 percent of younger Americans, 18-24, said their biggest fear was higher taxes. Just 28 percent of those same voters said they feared Obama winning in November.


1. Obama is the incumbent. That matters. And he has become increasingly confident in using the bully pulpit to his advantage, at appearing presidential. The crucial issue is going to be economics.
2. Despite Europe’s economic mess, a number of other factors suggest that the U.S. economy may begin to tick upward more during the next year. Other parts of the world are likely to be growing from the emerging markets to, in a modest way, Japan. More importantly, the likelihood that the U.S. unemployment rate declines the better part of a point to something closer to 8 percent is pretty good. That ought to be enough to make the case he avoided the abyss and turned things around in much the same way that Ronald Reagan did in 1984.
3. Like Reagan, Obama is liked and seen as trying hard to do the right thing. That, plus some signs of progress goes a long way with the American people.
4. Furthermore, none of these candidates are a Ronald Reagan. Moreover, none of them are even a George W. Bush, which is saying something. Mitt Romney is the whitest white man in America. He will look more like the establishment than Obama in an anti-establishment year. He will not get any journalistic good bounces because frankly it is hard to spin a narrative about the guy that will grab anyone’s heartstrings. Want evidence? Look at how desperately half the Republican party is at looking for alternatives.
5. That search for alternatives could lead to a third party candidate. If it’s Ron Paul it will eat into Romney’s base. It is highly unlikely the left will pose a similar challenge to Obama. As for the possibility of a centrist third party candidate, appealing as it may be, it will be less so to many if it appears that candidate can’t win and will only increase the likelihood that Mitt Romney will be elected on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce ticket.
6. While external events in the world, like the Iranian detonation of a nuclear device or a terror attack, could hurt Obama, in all likelihood, given his growing comfort with foreign-policy and the tendency of the American people to rally around the president in times of crisis, it would be a mistake to count on such a development being more likely to help the Republican candidate.
7. The reality is that while foreign policy won’t be central to the election, Obama has already succeeded in doing something remarkable: Taking it off the table. He is hard to criticize given his record with bin Laden, Al Awlaki, Gadhafi, meeting his promise in Iraq, starting to get out of Afghanistan, and restoring America’s international reputation.
8. We haven’t gotten to the one-on-one segment of the campaign yet. Whoever is the Republican candidate has to run against the very disciplined, intelligent, well-prepared, charismatic president. Which of those folks you saw Saturday night can hold their own versus Obama?
9. The Republican Party on the Hill, via the Tea Party and via its more extreme elements has adopted a bunch of policies that are astonishingly out of touch with the moment. They should be doing great given the economic problems. But they are not only seen as obstructionist on the Hill but they are seen as advocates of millionaires they don’t want taxed and opposed to fairness in sharing the burden for the sacrifices fixing the economy will require.
10. By extension the leading voices for the Republican Party are folks like those on the stage … and John Boehner and Eric Cantor and Mitch McConnell. Really? That’s going to grab America in the current environment?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Gov. Brown's confusing Tax plans.

Governor Brown‘s competing initiative, on the other hand, is typical of his “canoe” philosophy of governance, where he “rows a little to the left, and a little to the right.”  Governor Brown believes that we should ALL “share the pain,” even though most of us can’t take much more.  Governor Brown’s plan would raise taxes on those making $250,000 and over, and raise a sales tax on all of us for the next five years – sales taxes overwhelmingly affecting the poor and middle class. Brown has for weeks tried to convince backers of the so-called millionaires tax - along with supporters of a third competing tax increase proposal - to hold off on their tax plans and allow his to be the only one on the November ballot.He’s got, like I said, the more conservative SEIU and CTA behind his measure, although their rank and file disagree, and he also has some big business interests backing him, along with much of the Democratic Party leadershipThe new proposal would be a hybrid of the two. It would increase the sales tax by a quarter of a cent instead of Brown's proposed half a cent. Personal income tax would go up by 1 percentage point for individuals making $250,000 a year or couples making $500,000 a year. Individuals making $300,000 a year or couples making $600,000 a year would see an increase of 2 percentage points. And, individuals making $500,000 and couples making a $1 million or more would see a tax raise of 3 percentage points.What if BOTH these measures passed?  The framers of the Millionaires Tax considered that possibility, and allowed for it when they wrote their measure, having no problem with a walloping windfall of $13 billion a year for the next five years.  But then the Governor, aiming to please his big business backers who hate the Millionaires Tax, did not reciprocate.  So the two measures ARE now in conflict – only the one which gets the most votes will go into effect.Thirdly, to confuse things even more, we have the “Our Children, Our Future” initiative being pushed by civil rights attorney Molly Munger (daughter of billionaire would-be Republican reformer Charles Munger.)  This would raise just about EVERYBODY’s income taxes, for a total of 5 billion which would all go to K-12 education and early childhood programs.  Here’s a chart that compares the three different plans:  (click it for bigger PDF, easier to read)The huge tax increases proposed by Gov. Jerry Brown are becoming much less popular as voters learn more about them. At the rate of decline in popularity over just the past two months, there may be no one left in California who will vote for the higher taxes by the time November balloting arrives, save, of course, Mr. Brown and the principal beneficiaries, public employee union members to whom he panders.Meanwhile, an analysis by the state Board of Equalization, which handles state business taxes, has weighed the impact of the governor's higher taxes and found them quite costly. The proposed half-cent sales-tax increase alone would "cost Californians thousands of jobs and millions of dollars in lost investment," says board member George Runner, a Republican.
My question to Jerry Brown and our state legislators is: "Where is this $65 million for the Dream Act supposed to come from? How can we possibly afford this new entitlement program while California is in the midst of a fiscal crisis?"
Any taxes levied on the rich will not be paid by them but by YOU the consumer either by higher priced goods or services or by scaled back employment as the rich shift their investments around which means scaling back on hiring to reduce expansion in order to fall under the scope of any knew tax aimed at them"Temporary" in CA means permanent. Government will spend what they can take. Anyone who thinks this is about paying down deficits will be sorely disappointed. Next, this is a recipe for business owners and high earners to change their permanent residence to states with lower taxes (I will be one of them). Finally, it won't solve the problem. "Taxing the rich" to accomodate 50% of CA residents who pay no tax (yes, it's true) is not a sustainable solution. It's purely a political one.

Monday, March 12, 2012

American Soldier Syndrome.

This weekend's shooting in Afghanistan is not the first incident of members of the US military being accused of using unnecessary force against civilians. We look back at five other horrific incidents that shook America, its armed forces and the world. 


A US soldier allegedly left his base in Afghanistan Sunday and went door-to-door shooting Afghan civilians, killing 16 and leaving both Afghanistan and America reeling. While the incident has sparked outrage at home and abroad, this is hardly the first time that members of the US armed forces have been accused of committing atrocities on the ground.
Here, we look back at five other shocking incidents that left their mark on America's military history. What incidents are we missing? Leave your comments below.
1. No Gun Ri, Korea 
In 1950, the United States intervened in the Korean War in defense of the South, but its forces were undertrained and underprepared, according to the BBC. The North's attacks created a severe refugee crisis, and as thousands of Koreans clogged the battlefield as they fled war-torn areas, the US forces panicked.
On the same day that the US Army delivered a stop refugee order in July 1950, around 400 South Korean civilians were killed in the town of No Gun Ri by US forces from the 7th Cavalry Regiment. The soldiers argued they thought the refugees could include disguised North Korean soldiers.
Many refugees were shot while on or under a stone bridge that ran through the town; others were attacked with bombs and machine-gun fire from US planes, the BBC reported. The ordeal lasted for three days, according to local survivors and members of the Cavalry.
"There was a lieutenant screaming like a madman, fire on everything, kill 'em all," veteran Joe Jackman recalled, according to the BBC. "I didn't know if they were soldiers or what. Kids, there was kids out there, it didn't matter what it was, 8 to 80, blind, crippled or crazy, they shot 'em all."
The Associated Press broke the news of the massacre in September 1999. It has come to be known as one of the largest single killings of civilians by American forces in the 20th century
2. My Lai, Vietnam 
On March 16, 1968, the Charlie Company, 11th Brigade entered the village of My Lai, in an area of Vietnam where many members of the American brigade had been maimed or killed by Viet Cong forces, PBS reported. The troops ended up killing over 300 civilians under orders from their Lieutenant, William Calley, who told his men to enter the village firing, though there had been no report of opposing fire, PBS reported.
According to eyewitness reports, several old men were bayoneted, praying women and children were shot in the back of the head, and at least one girl was raped and then killed.
The story did not reach the American public until journalist Seymour Hersh published a story detailing his conversations with a Vietnam veteran, Ron Ridenhour, in November 1969. The massacre raised significant questions about the conduct of American soldiers and their leaders in the field.
3. Abu Ghraib, Iraq
In 2004, the world was shocked when photos were released of American soldiers abusing Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib, a sprawling prison west of Baghdad which was notorious for its frequent torturing sessions and executions under Saddam Hussein, the New York Times reported.
The photos, which showed Iraqi detainees being beaten, abused and sexually assaulted, fueled Arab and Muslim rage against the United States, and were used as a powerful tool to recruit insurgents in Iraq and elsewhere, according to the Times.
Nine US soldiers were found guilty in the abuse case, which also fuelled multiple other military and Congressional investigations. Former President Bush proposed to destroy the complex after the crimes were uncovered, but an American military judge ordered that it be preserved as a crime scene, the Times reported. In March 2006, the military announced that it would clear out all remaining prisoners from Abu Ghraib.
In February 2009, the prison was reopened under a new name, Baghdad’s Central Prison, and promises of humanitarian conduct.
4. Haditha, Iraq 
On November 19, 2005, a group of US marines killed 24 unarmed men, women and children in the city of Haditha in Western Iraq. Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich admitted to telling his men to “shoot first and ask questions later," and the massacre is believed to have been an act of revenge for an attack on an American convoy that killed a marine, according to the New York Times.
Sgt. Wuterich and eight of his marines were charged in connection with the incident on December 21, 2006, but six had their charges dropped and one was found not guilty. Sgt. Wuterich was also eventually found not guilty of voluntary manslaughter, CBS News reported.
Upon his release, Wuterich addressed the family members of the Iraqi victims.
"I wish to assure you that on that day, it was never my intention to harm you or your families. I know that you are the real victims of Nov. 19, 2005," he said, according to CBS
5. Azizabad airstrike, Afghanistan
On August 22, 2008, Afghan civilians who had gathered in a small village for the memorial ceremony of a militia leader were killed by airstrike by US and Afghan soldiers, who were on an operation in the area to pursue Taliban commander Mullah Siddiq, according to the New York Times.
The airstrike's estimated casualties varied widely between 30 and 90, according to conflicting accounts from American troops, aid workers, local villagers, and a report made by the Afghanistan government.
The Pentagon described the attack as "a legitimate strike against the Taliban" and questioned the casualty estimates given by the government of Afghanistan and reported by the media. The US military originally denied that any civilian casualties had occurred, but later acknowledged after the release of a cell phone video that some civilians may have been killed, and announced it would investigate the incident, the Associated Press reported.
In 2009, Mohammad Nader, a villager from Azizabad, was sentenced to death for giving incorrect information to soldiers about Siddiq's location, the Daily Telegraph reported.
"You, Mohammad Nader, are sentenced to capital punishment for spying for foreign forces and giving wrong information that caused the death of civilians," said judge Qazi Mukaram, according to the Telegraph.
"The US still needs to change its policies and practices on airstrikes to end the string of attacks that have caused so much loss of civilian life," said Brian Adams, head of Human Rights' Watch's Asia division, which launched its own inquiry into the attacks. "Otherwise the planned arrival of 20-30,000 more troops in Afghanistan may lead to greater, not fewer, civilian deaths."

As for Afghanistan, it is plain to all but a few pseudo-Lawrence of Arabia types who like playing secret soldiers, that we are dealing with savages, who are not interested in the armed social workers we dispatch there to ensure that girls can go to school. Armed development is the politics of the average sentimental BBC Question Time audience and its panels of aging LibDem women (plus 'Ming' Campbell) rather than hard headed statesmanship.Nobody has ever won in Afghanistan, the terrain, climate and population aren't conquerable. The government is corrupt from top to bottom and so they will never have anyone's interest other than their own, the culture is so upside-down that death, murder, infanticide, rape are hardly crimes at all. Osama is dead, Afghanistan has nothing else to give, let's just fold our tail between our legs and head home.


Saturday, March 10, 2012

Big Earnings for Schools Chief.

Xavier De La Torre, new Santa Clara County Superintendent... ( Socorro Independent School Distr ) Mkes more Money than the Governor of the State of California , Jerry Brown.

I for one would have nothing to BLOG about this weekend for it happened that the Mercury News printed a news story that  headline read  : "New Santa Clara County schools chief's salary: $299,500" . I am amazed that in the plight of our local public schools that struggle yearly for budget related issues,  the county hires a man with a large salary . Somebody I know said to me , ' Hay this guy makes more money than the Governor of the state  of California!. **'Xavier De La Torre, 48, was confirmed Wednesday afternoon as the county's top educator. He will be paid $299,500 annually, plus receive a $12,000 annual auto allowance and, with at least a satisfactory performance in the first year, $20,000 more toward purchase of pension credits. His salary will rise automatically every July by the percentage increase in the Consumer Price Index for the Bay Area .The silver lining for budget hawks is that the new superintendent's salary will be less than what incumbent Charles Weis is being paid: $332,600.. Yes this is still way out of bounds with the continuing rational of budgets in the state . If you look at Most school Districts nearly a thousand of them for the last decade or two have been cutting many of their programs in Stu.   State of California  continues it';s struggles to raise money for k-12 education . Local School Districts are about to cut and plan ahead for possibility of huge cuts as they nail bite through the May revise and Jerry Brown November Tax increase.  

One Person agrees with me on this .
"This is absurd, totally absurd," said Angie Cardoza, a former member of the Santa Clara County civil grand jury, which issued a critical report two years ago of school superintendent salaries.
"In today's economic times, when we're cutting back on teachers and cutting back on education programs, it's difficult for me to comprehend," Cardoza said.

Lorraine D'Ambruoso
Executive Director California Language Teachers' Association San Jose made this point as I quote :
"This shows an amazing lack of consideration for the sacrifices that these educators and so many others make on a daily basis." She's right !

 It's  is a vary bad political move for the Public Education system for paying out such large sums to their County Superintendents . In the Coming months with schools facing serious budget issues , this example will turn likely the voters who would support the Governor Tax to save k-12 funding away .

**De La Torre is also being offered a $1 million home loan, half at 2 percent and half at 3 percent interest rates. The board will also advance him $25,000 for moving expenses. Wow , tell me if the average family would be able to get a home lone these days with out the notion of paying off and owning a home with a 30 year fixed mortgage.  De La Torre can at least live in a million dollar mansion .In addition, the board extended Weis a $1 million housing loan, half interest-free, and the other half at 3 percent. Although he purchased a residence in San Jose, Weis maintained his permanent home in Ventura County. 
Here's some data to compare :

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger $17,681.56 $212,179
Lieutenant Governor $13,261.17 $159,134
Superintendent Compensation

What school superintendents around the Bay Area and the state make, including their salary, bonus, auto and technology allowances, and extra annuities.
Name District Compensation
Charles Weis Santa Clara County Office of Education $332,600
Xavier De La Torre Santa Clara County Office of Education¹ $311,500
Carlos Garcia San Francisco Unified School District $293,000
John Deasy Los Angeles Unified School District $275,000²
Sheila Jordan Alameda County Office of Education $238,888
Anne Campbell San Mateo County Office of Education $217,944

¹ Starts July 1; amount doesn't include up to $25,000 in relocation expenses
² Contracted salary was $330,000 but took a voluntary reduction

Tuesday, March 6, 2012


Rush Limbaugh's tactic of using sexist name-calling to try and embarrass Sandra Fluke has backfired against him. His churlish attack created a media storm that the Republican Party got dragged into and which has hurt the image of the party.
Sandra Fluke has more choices with regard to her sex life and reproduction than any woman in historyDespite Limbaugh's ranting, this doesn't mean there were no problem's with Fluke's testimony. Byron York at the Washington Examiner begins the process of looking at what Fluke actually said. York first points out that Fluke didn't go through the traditional vetting process most expert witnesses go through:.For those unfamiliar with Ms. Fluke, she is the 30-year-old third-year Georgetown University law student and left-wing activist who sat before an unofficial congressional committee on February 16. She testified that women like her need access to birth control, a point that almost no one disputes.More controversially, however, she argued that Georgetown, a 223-year-old Jesuit institution, should be forced by federal law to pay for her contraception of choice without regard to Georgetown’s religious beliefs — and that somehow Georgetown’s current policy is a medieval infringement on her rights as a human being.Perhaps it is worth outlining a few of the choices Ms. Fluke already enjoys in America in 2012.She has an incredible array of birth control devices and techniques to choose from — including birth control pills, patches, caps, rings, shots, diaphragms, implants, spermicides (foam, jelly, cream, film), male condoms, female condoms, morning-after pills, Depo-Provera, IUDs, pulling out, tubal ligation and, yes, abortion. Do they still make chastity belts?She has the choice to have her boyfriend or husband pay for her preferred method of contraception. This seems like a reasonable accommodation assuming only he, and not all of society, is enjoying the pleasure of her company.She has the choice to shop around for less expensive birth control. As John McCormack pointed out in The Weekly Standard, generic Ortho Tri-Cyclen costs $9 at the Washington, D.C. Target store, or $297 for the 33 months of law school. This is 90 percent less than the $3,000 three-year cost that Ms. Fluke cited in her testimony.


If you and others who think her testimony was endorsing contraception so she could have sex, would simply watch the video of her testimony you would not be posting the horseapple that keeps coming out of your keyboards.
If you think this is about government paying for it, you are also wrong, no government money was used.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Message : No More War.

Iranian warships have entered the Mediterranean Sea for only the second time since the 1979 revolution.
 *Mr Netanyahu effectively brings with him an ultimatum, demanding that unless the president makes a firm pledge to use US military force to prevent Iran acquiring a nuclear bomb, Israel may well take matters into its own hands within months.  Two years ago, Barack Obama reportedly left Benjamin Netanyahu to kick his heels in a White House anteroom, a snub delivered to show the president's irritation over Israel's settlement policy in the West Bank. In May, the Israeli prime minister struck back, publicly scolding his purse-lipped host for the borders he proposed of a future Palestinian state.When the two men meet in Washington on Monday, Mr Obama will find his guest once more at his most combative. But this time, perhaps as never before, it is the Israeli who has the upper hand.The path on which he is leading the Israelis is fraught with peril for their tiny Jewish nation . . . and potentially for Jews worldwide. He is determined to take the United States and the American people on the “joy ride” with him, which is utter madness.Not a single drop of American blood should ever be spilled to protect or defend Israel, period. It is on its own, sink or swim. It is a pariah state worldwide because of Netanyahu; and Barack Obama was right in reaching out to the Islamic world—and he must block all warmongering actions by Netanyahu.The press has been feeding anxiety about the development of  nuclear power in Iran because it sees Iran as an interfering nuisance in Afghanistan (with which it shares a border) and the Middle East -fair enough,but other powers (Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and of course Britain France and the USA) are interfering as well; yet surely the core issue is nuclear power and its ability to branch out into nuclear weapons -Israel started it after all, so its a bit rich for a state that has actually attacked and occupied its neighbours over nearly 70 years to complain about Iran -attacks will not stop the development, and as we speak, Saudi Arabia, Syria and Turkey are moving towards the same objectives: nuclear power -and though I would rather it were otherwise, with capital from Russia, China and eventually India, the nuclearisation of the Middle East continues and there seems to be nothing we can do about it.


*President Obama gave a forceful defense of his administration’s commitment to Israel’s security on Sunday, using a speech to a pro-Israel lobbying group to take on critics on the Republican presidential campaign trail who have called for a harder American line to rein in Iran’s nuclear ambitions.“I do not have a policy of containment,” Mr. Obama said, to applause from the huge crowd in the cavernous hall at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. “I have a policy to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. And as I’ve made clear time and again during the course of my presidency, I will not hesitate to use force when it is necessary to defend the United States and its interests.”
Why exactly is it OK for Israel, a country with a history of being trigger happy, to have nuclear arms and not for Iran? Indeed the one sure way to get Iran to the negotiating table would be for Israel to offer to give up its atomic weapons if Iran would suspend its nuclear program.

We as a country should be shocked at how openly active a foreign country and its US supporters, a very small but quite moneyed minority of our population, are in lobbying our Congress. Is there a single member of Congress who doesn't receive a healthy contribution from the AIPAC each year to their campaign funds?
Anjad Pakistan, is the ground zero for terroism. Look at the latest books on Pakistan

1. Playing with Fire: Pakistan at War with Itself

2. Pakistan: A Hard Country

3. The Unraveling: Pakistan in the Age of Jihad

4. Deadly Embrace: Pakistan, America, and the Future of the Global Jihad

5. Pakistan: Between Mosque And Military

The question is why is Pakistan not on the list.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Super Tuesday at Glance.

"Delegates is what it's all about," Romney said Saturday.
Santorum, though, said he's "not worried" about such organizational issues. 
"It's David and Goliath. I get that," he told Fox News. "And you know what? I know who wins in the end." 

Is it over yet? Please, just put an end to it all. Pick someone--perhaps the one that doesn't talk too much. At least then he would be able to hide his ignorance and have some sort of chance, though small it may be.The Republican presidential campaign arrives at a potentially pivotal moment Tuesday, with contests in 10 states that should provide the most definitive clues to date about the possible length of the race and whether anybody has a genuine chance of preventing Mitt Romney from winning the GOP nomination. Yet nobody knows , but a sure winner may shock every one.  I am glad that it's winding down to two , I  also believe that  the past GOP debates  had exposed the party , for what it is .A radically divided  party unlike that of Ronald Reagan era . A party pocked with extremeness . Only Newt and Romney seem sane.The Republican presidential candidates were competing Saturday for the final prize before Super Tuesday, vying from afar for delegates in Washington state's low-key caucuses.The real prize for both Romney and Santorum on Tuesday is Ohio, a key November battleground with 66 delegates at stake. Both men have been campaigning hard in the state and will continue to do so on Saturday as polls show a small but shrinking lead for Santorum .Only for former House speaker Newt Gingrich is Super Tuesday shaping up to be a do-or-die election day. He has acknowledged that he must win his home state of Georgia.

Two new polls, conducted by Quinnipiac University and Rasmussen Reports, show Santorum leading by margins of 4 and 2 percentage points respectively with Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul running far behind.In prior surveys conducted in mid-February, Quinnipiac showed Santorum leading Romney by 7 percentage points and Rasmussen had him ahead by 18.


This hold fiasco was staged by the GOP and Romney has always been their choice, it's just a matter of them getting a fill for their base to find out which issues to target that will garner votes. Newt and Perry-- scouted the opinions of the fringed right wing. Santorum- the extreme religious right (abortion, birth control), Huntsman—the Moderate Conservative, Bachman—the tea party and Ron Paul the free market Republican Libertarian, let’s return to the olden days and his son Rand Paul is living proof of that.

That’s why Romney and Paul mesh well together and Paul hasn’t been attacking him (not really). Paul and Romney think alike. Romney and Bain Capital for instance. Paul and free-markets, less government….Romney is a puppet for his backers (Koch Brothers) he will NOT represent Americans, he will represent his backers. Newt is broker than a she haint, bad credit….aw common, it’s so transparent! He knew he didn’t stand a chance. This was a staged event, the entire “circus” was. But this time…it back fired on them. The GOP needs a sanitizer to unite the base…

Thursday, March 1, 2012

The Sheriff's Wife.

Eliana Lopez is to blame for her husbands problem , but no excuse for domestic violence. 

Domestic Violence is a silent crime , and no society should tolerate it on any grounds . The case here as I have read the news stories regarding Embattled San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi. I am starting to smell a 'rat' , if you think about how Mirkarimi wife ran to her friend to take photo's (video ) for evidence for a a possible future child custody case . Seems all to me as if Eliana Lopez was out for her husband . While it seems a bit belated , the wife the victim of abuse turns around and sticks to her husbands side , and refuses to testify against him!Interesting. If she takes the stand and now says it was all a lie (while having immunity) because she was just upset at him he could potentially get off. Then she would get off for lying because of immunity and everyone goes home. If I were the prosecution I would be suspicious of her reasons. Nobody ever said anything about her immigration status; only she did

The Mercury News Reported :
In the video, Lopez pointed to her arm and said, "This happened yesterday, um, the end of 2011, and this is the second time this is happening. And I tell Ross I want to work on the marriage, we need help, I have been telling him we need help, and I am going to use this just in case he wants to take Theo away from me. Because he did, he said that, that he's very powerful, and he can, he can do it," according to the filing...."I really thought that we would never have to use this video, uh, unless, (Mirkarimi) got nasty in the divorce proceedings," Madison said, according to the filing.
It's interesting how a few years ago, Joanne Hayes-White, the chief of the SF fire department supposedly committed felony assault with a deadly weapon (felony) against her spouse, and she got a pass because her husband, who called 911 and reported it (and his fear for the children's safety) basically "took it back". And it was swept under the rug.

Now, Mirkarimi supposedly commits battery (misdemeanor), where there was no police report by the supposed victim, and who strongly rejects any claim of abuse.

The DA is acting like they are pursuing Al Capone.

Disproportionate much?

You just have to scratch the surface to see this is primary a political vendetta. The rank and file strongly dislike Mirkarimi, an outsider, versus Miyamoto and the other sheriff staff that felt entitled to the job. (where have we seen that before...) Once they got a whiff of this, they went into overdrive with their insider buddies to make this more than it is.

(Not to excuse any behavior, but if you think this only about DV, you need to think again.)

The true victim is this child, who is being harmed by the SF political machine which lacks integrity and consistency.

If Mirkarimi survives this (very possible), then it will be scorched earth for all those who went against him. He's already shoring up the rank and file by promoting Miyamoto. (wise political move).
DA's office is not stuck - they have to go whole hog for a conviction and the removal of him, to it will be untenable for them.

There's an eventual book and movie deal out of all of this, of course.