Monday, February 25, 2013

sequestration & " lies"

Don't worry . Don't hit the button on the sequestration. My previous posting on my blog I said that hypocrisy  runs deep.Put another way, the sequestration scares are lies, pure and simple. Not just bunk, not just distortions or mis-statements, but lies. And every professional politician – Democrat, Republican, Socialist, Independent – in this town knows it. If Republicans Did Not Want the Sequestration,Listen to them whine in Washington about the potential “cuts” from sequestration. President Barack Obama is acting just like a local school board, threatening to cut sports and busing whenever citizens will not pass a levy. It’s a well-orchestrated drama meant to intimidate taxpayers Why Did 218 of Them Vote for It? Both Parties want the sequestration to happen anyway . President Obama want it to go full speed , because it will give him the "revenue" he needs . The Republicans want the sequestration because they will get 85 billion in cuts , that a mere scratch on the 17 trillion deficit.Scare tactic propaganda by Obama Democrats on how the sequestration will affect all 50 states is part of a White House campaign to pressure congressional Republicans. A very small slice of the spending pie at only 2 cents on every dollar or $85 billion in automatic budget cuts will:  A slowdown of Superstorm Sandy cleanup in New Jersey, teacher layoffs in Ohio, reduced ship maintenance in Virginia, fewer vaccinations in Georgia, military base cutbacks in Texas and California, and similar reductions in states across the country. The reports list numerous cutbacks in federal programs (2% across-the-board) that have big constituencies or political popularity, including Head Start, military readiness, the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, and Clean Air and Clean Water programs. The federal “bloat” in these programs should be reduced by 10%. All of them are high cost and low impact on Americans.   ....that it's everybody's fault, including Mr. Obama, including Republicans, including Democrats. They play the game. The American public should be up in arms that their government is so dysfunctional .For the historical record, all sides bear responsibility for this turn of events. What President Obama now calls a “really bad idea” was generated by his own economic policy team. What Speaker John Boehner now refers to as a “meat ax” passed the House at his urging with 174 Republican votes. Sequester was a terrible idea in the first place, I think we can all agree on that. I don't, however, understand why Democrats suggest that the blame is all on the Republicans. Obama introduced the idea to Reid and both the House and Senate approved it, there should be enough blame to go around. Additionally, it seems that Obama made a deal so that the sequester cuts would not take place until after the election and new revenues would not be part of the replacement to those spending cuts. So it seems to me that Obama mostly responsible for this current impasse because he is not willing to do anything now without more revenue. It also seems to me that responsible cuts could replace these arbitrary cuts, but Democrats smell blood in the water and so if any cuts are going to happen they want to make it painful. As March 1st looms closer and closer and the dreaded automatic government spending cuts (Sequestration) begin to kick in, the fear mongering, the deception and the out an out lies smothering the American people like swamp swill are beginning to reach a crescendo. Remember it's all LIES , the fact that 80% of the American people’s eyes gloss over at the mention of of big numbers. And others will not take the time to try and do some basic math. No wonder this country is in such a dire predicament.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Is sequester inevitable? Avoidable ?

"Sequestration "  ahead  why Obama is not in Washington D.C. ? The Answer  is here.
Just a little of the two weeks left Is sequester inevitable? Avoidable ? In nine days, $85 billion of automatic spending cuts will snap down on the federal budget. Half of the cuts will hit defense; half will hit Medicare spending. We’ve been expecting this since the summer of 2011. We were supposed to deal with it in December—remember the words fiscal cliff?—but most of Congress punted the cuts to March 1. It’s the latest in the ongoing series of manufactured crises that have made Congress our most beloved institution.What’s more fun than a manufactured crisis? Why, a manufactured political spat about that crisis! Seven weeks have passed since the deadline was bumped to March, and in that time the Republican Party has alternated between attacking the White House for pushing sequestration and infighting over whether the cuts should proceed as they are. It’s confusing I sure hope so. President Obama's own words might haunt him. It started with Mitt Romney, a once-influential Republican Party politician and its 2012 nominee for president. In the third debate with President Obama, Romney fretted that “a trillion dollars in cuts through sequestration and budget cuts to the military” would weaken America’s defenses. The president literally dismissed this with a wave of his hand. “The sequester is not something that I proposed,” he said. “It's something that Congress has proposed. It will not happen.”The President is always looking to point the finger at someone else, which almost always comes right back at him! “My message to [Congress] is simple: No. I will veto any effort to get rid of those automatic spending cuts to domestic and defense spending. There will be no easy off-ramps on this one.” (President Obama, Super Committee Statement, November 21, 2011) Democrats are using scare tactics and hyped rhetoric in making their case against sequestration. It seems as though any cut in government spending will lead to some sort of catastrophic occurrence.During his speech ,Barack Obama threatened the loss of thousands of jobs. 

- “It will jeopardize our military readiness”
- “It will eviscerate job-creating investments in education, energy and medical research”
- “Emergency responders, their ability to respond to and recover from disaster bill be degraded”
- “Border patrol agents will see their hours reduced”
- “FBI agents will be furloughed”
- “Federal prosecutors will have to close cases and let criminals go”
- “Air traffic controllers and airport security will see cutbacks, which means more delays in airports across the country”
- “Thousands of teachers and educators will be laid off”
- “Tens of thousands of parents will have to scramble to find childcare for their kids”
- “Hundreds of thousands of Americans will lose access to preventive care and primary care like flu vaccinations and cancer screenings”
- “The unemployment rate might tick up again”
- “Deeper cuts in student loan programs”
Everybody with half a brain saw this coming. These scare tactics are old. The same thing over and over. It's a shame that he ( Obama) signed on Sequester Bill last year . And now the inevitable is going happen anyhow.We all know that he doesn't want to cut anything. All the things that he scared us with in the beginning of his first term didn't work.Republican House Speaker John Boehner has responded to President Obama's apocalyptic speech on sequestration yesterday. In the Wall Street Journal, Boehner writes the followingHaving first proposed and demanded the sequester, it would make sense that the president lead the effort to replace it. Unfortunately, he has put forth no detailed plan that can pass Congress, and the Senate—controlled by his Democratic allies—hasn't even voted on a solution, let alone passed one. By contrast, House Republicans have twice passed plans to replace the sequester with common-sense cuts and reforms that protect national security. Boehner's office contests that characterization, arguing that the PowerPoint was simply Boehner’s attempt to explain the president's plan to the Republican caucus.  The Obama-Boehner grand bargain that was negotiated in the summer of 2011 and came so close to being agreed upon increasingly looks like the best bet conservatives could get. It was the "sequester" . #  The hypocrisy runs deep.

* In August 2011, with the nation's debt-limit deadline fast approaching, and with the threat of credit downgrades and government shutdowns looming over partisan negotiations in Washington, congressional Republicans refused to up the federal debt ceiling without accompanying spending cuts to shrink the deficit.
When talks broke down, sides agreed on the Budget Control Act -- a measure that applied discretionary spending caps and also included a mandate for more deficit-reduction in the future. It created the congressional budget "supercommittee" -- the panel of representatives and senators that were given another deadline to propose a package of spending cuts and/or tax hikes to lower the deficit.
Sequestration was agreed upon as the unpleasant consequence of failure: If the committee couldn't recommend a package by late 2011, and if Congress couldn't pass it in January 2012, $1.2 trillion in automatic cuts would be triggered.

# The Budget Control Act of 2011 (Pub.L. 112–25, S. 365, 125 Stat. 240, enacted August 2, 2011) is a federal statutein the United States that was signed into law by President Barack Obama on August 2, 2011. The Act brought conclusion to the 2011 United States debt-ceiling crisis, which had threatened to lead the United States into sovereign default on or about August 3, 2011.
The law involves the introduction of several complex mechanisms, such as creation of the Congressional Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction (sometimes called the "super committee"),[1] options for a balanced budget amendmentand automatic budget sequestration.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

The Pope's abdication, reality?

In order to save the Catholic Church did
Pope Benedict willfully abdicate?
For a billion Catholic's the Pope is a spiritual leader . Pope Benedict asked the faithful to pray for him and for the next pope, in his penultimate Sunday address to a crowded St. Peter's Square before becoming the first pontiff in centuries to resign ...The crowd chanted "Long live the pope!," waved banners and broke into sustained applause as he spoke from his window. The 85-year-old Benedict, who will abdicate on February 28, thanked them in several languages. Speaking in Spanish, he told the crowd which the Vatican said numbered more than 50,000: "I beg you to continue praying for me and for the next pope".There are also rampant rumors that the pope’s health is far worse than anyone realizes. Whispers of late-night helicopter trips to emergency rooms and hints that he is suffering some terminal illness like leukemia pushed forward by Italian gossip site Dagospia are unconfirmed, but still won’t go away. Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi begins each press briefing with a list of untruths he has read in the press, effectively spinning the stories back under Vatican control. **Resignations may be not only express but also tacit. The latter is presumed to have taken place when a cleric accepts an office or commits an act incompatible with the holding of an ecclesiastical dignity, such as solemn profession in a religious order,enrolment in the army, contracting marriage, and the like. A little HISTORY here. The last Pope to "resign" was John XXIII (1410-1415) was probably the most entertaining of the Renaissance Popes, though there is some doubt whether he was legally the Pope. Gibbon says of him when he was brought to trial: “The most scandalous charges were suppressed; the vicar of Christ was only accused of piracy, murder, rape, sodomy, and incest.”It isn’t easy to say exactly how many. Church history is often rather murky, and it can be hard to distinguish between abdication and deposition – look, for example, at Silverius, who, I think, was arrested by Belisarius and sent off for trial before the Emperor. Popes have come and gone in the last 2000 years of the Roman Catholic  Church . The Catholic church today should hearken back to it's days when it's temporal rule over nations . The Church needs a revival , and a "cleansing" amid sex scandals .  # Benedict's papacy was rocked by crises over the sex abuse of children by priests in Europe and the United States, most of which preceded his time in office but came to light during it. His reign also saw Muslim anger after he compared Islam to violence. Jews were upset over his rehabilitation of a Holocaust denier. During a scandal over the Church's business dealings, @  his butler was convicted of leaking his private papers. There is another reason I suspect that Benedict left . He was pushed around by the Church's Cardinals . The Pope is not independent by all means . Benedict  came to the papacy burdened by the cartoon image of “God’s Rottweiler” and the fact that he had been a very reluctant draftee into the Wehrmacht during World War II. What Joseph Ratzinger displayed over the seven-and-a-half years of his pontificate, however, was an acute sense of the crisis of western democracy at this moment in history. A German pope who publicly thanked the people of the United Kingdom for winning the Battle of Britain was, clearly, a man with an unusual perspective on, and insight into, contemporary history.Immediate reaction to the address of the Holy Father to the Roman clergy has been varied. Some have interpreted his comments as a remarkable and a new revelation of his disdain for the conciliar reforms; others as a poor attempt of distinguishing the work of the Council itself from its aftermath.  In fact, he has simply reaffirmed what he has been saying since the beginning of his pontificate, namely, that Council needs to be interpreted according to a hermeneutic of continuity and reform, not one of rupture.

**All doubt as to the legitimacy of papal abdications and all disputes among canonists were put an end to by the decree of Pope Boniface VIII which was received into the Corpus Juris Canonici (Cap. Quoniam I, de renun., in 6). The Pontiff says:
Our predecessor, Pope Celestine V, whilst he governed the Church, constituted and decreed that the Roman Pontiffcan freely resign. Therefore lest it happen that this statute should in the course of time fall into oblivion, or thatdoubt upon the subject should lead to further disputes, We have determined with the counsel of our brethren that it be placed among other constitutions for a perpetual memory of the same.

 #  The one aspect of this event which interested me was your suggestion of the possibility of Divine intervention, at the personal level, perhaps having played a role in this drama. The ritualism surrounding “Shrovetide” makes the unlikelihood of a Papal abdication coinciding with it a synchronicity far too compelling to ignore. However, the additional feature of a spectacular lightning strike upon St. Peter’s the very day of the papal resignation followed today by the spectacular account of a supposed “meteor” strike in the Urals region of Russia has to make one wonder if the heavens themselves are in a state of agitation.

@  Last year's "Vatileaks" scandal, in which the pope's butler Paolo Gabriele provided Italian journalists with a number of confidential Vatican documents—revealing corruption, intrigue and infighting at the highest levels of the church. "Knowing that one of his closest aides had betrayed him must have left him very isolated and powerless. The Pope must have felt that power was slipping away from him, his power to govern," The Table editor Elena Curti told Metro. Did Vatileaks take down the pope? Or were the scandals it uncovered just a taste of what's to come—and is Benedict's abdication a preemptory move?

Friday, February 15, 2013

The "space rock" .

Just think . Today February 15th , 2013. would have been a bang! At least for Russia , they got all the fireworks .The dramatic fireball that exploded over Russia today (Feb. 15) was apparently the biggest such blast in more than a century, scientists say. The object that caused the Russian fireball, which damaged hundreds of buildings and wounded perhaps 1,000 people in the Chelyabinsk region, was originally probably about 50 feet (15 meters) in diameter and weighed roughly 7,000 tons, said Peter Brown, director of the Center for Planetary Science and Exploration at the University of Western Ontario in Canada. A 150-foot asteroid hurtled through Earth's backyard Friday, coming within an incredible 17,150 miles and making the closest known flyby for a rock of its size. In a chilling coincidence, a meteor exploded above Russia's Ural Mountains just hours before the asteroid zoomed past the planet. Scientists the world over, along with NASA, insisted the meteor had nothing to do with the asteroid since they appeared to be traveling in opposite directions. The asteroid is a much more immense object and delighted astronomers in Australia and elsewhere who watched it zip harmlessly through a clear night sky. Asteroid 2012 DA14, as it's called, came closer to Earth than many communication and weather satellites orbiting 22,300 miles up. Scientists insisted these, too, would be spared, and they were right. The asteroid was too small to see with the naked eye even at its closest approach around 2:25 p.m. EST, over the Indian Ocean near Sumatra. Prof. Alan Fitzsimmons, an astronomer at the Astrophysics Research Centre at Queen’s University Belfast, told the BBC that 2012 Da14 approached Earth from the south, while the meteor struck the Earth’s atmosphere in the northern hemisphere, indicating that the objects were traveling in different directions. “This is literally a cosmic coincidence, although a spectacular one,” he said. It was tragic that people got hurt from this 10-ton meteorite but the raw video footage was very interesting to watch. It seems that more meteorites find their way through the atmosphere to Russia. The Asteroid DA14 was traveling one way and the meteorite was moving in an opposite direction. I’m thinking there wasn’t any connection but I’m not a astrophysicist .The energy released when the meteorite entered the atmosphere was equivalent to a few kilotons, the power of a small atomic weapon exploding.No deaths were reported but 20,000 rescue and clean-up workers were sent to the region to assist. The early-morning blast and ensuing shock wave blew out windows buckled some shop fronts, rattled apartment buildings and blew out windows.Experts drew comparisons with an event in 1908, when a meteorite is thought to have devastated an area of more than 1,250 miles in Siberia, breaking windows as far as 125 miles from the point of impact. NASA for many years has run the Near Earth Object Program ( that monitors all near-earth objects (i.e. asteroids, meteors) and calculates their trajectory and probability of hitting the earth. Given enough warning, we may be in a position in the future to deflect these large objects and avoid a major, planetary-scale disaster. This is a good, long-term investment that US taxpayers should support.

Monday, February 11, 2013

2013. State of the Union?

2013 .With Tuesday's State of the Union  President Obama  . More or less my political opinion of it is in just these simple terms . Mr. Obama is up against the wall . His first term in office was occupied with his  push for Health Care , saving the Banks with stimulus money . Frankly ignoring the rest of the 99 %.  The President will as usual present that all is well. All because Wall Street DOW average hit 14,000 , or that 100,000 new jobs were added .President Obama has to get to work and end "gridlock" .He’ll pay lip service to bipartisanship, but don’t expect anything like the call for peaceful collaboration that defined his first address to a joint session of Congress in 2009 .Reviving his populist re-election message, President Barack Obama will press a politically-divided Congress to approve more tax increases and fewer spending cuts during a State of the Union address focused on stabilizing the middle class and repairing the still-wobbly economy.White House spokesman Jay Carney said Obama would outline "his plan to create jobs and grow the middle class" as the nation struggles with persistently high unemployment.He declined to get into specifics, but said the speech will focus on "proposals that are necessary to help the middle class grow and to help the economy grow." I have to ask . Is the President's plan going to lift the poor out of poverty towards a path that will enable them to join the middle class? ## You all should know that anyone making over 100,000 a year is considered "middle class" in the American capitalist system .Some of Obama's job ideas will be repackaged versions of proposals he made during his first term, though aides say there will be some new initiatives, too. All of the economic proposals are expected to echo themes from Obama's re-election campaign, which focused on using increased spending to generate jobs, protecting programs to help the middle class, and bringing down the deficit in part by culling more tax revenue from the wealthiest Americans. Obama previewed his priorities in the Inaugural Address given January 21, 2013. He presented a vision repeating the Declaration of Independence phrase, "We, the People." He outlined seven areas which will probably be fleshed out in the SOTU. First, Obama will continue to press for infrastructure repair, which also is a good tool for job creationAlthough he only mentioned it briefly in the Address, immigration law reform is a second top priority. Obama said he will present legislation in 2013. This will probably be easier to pass politically than in the past. Why? The 2012 Presidential Election showed Republicans the growing power of Hispanic voters. But the deficit and the economy are unavoidable centerpieces for any Obama speech. Despite a seemingly slow-and-steady recovery in jobs, in the stock market and other indicators, the unemployment rate ticked back up again last month. And a Commerce Department report showed the economy shrank by .1 percent in the last quarter of 2012. Meanwhile, Obama and Congress are scrambling to find a way to avoid automatic spending cuts poised to hit March 1 unless a deal is reached to replace them. Obama, to the chagrin of Republicans, wants to replace those cuts with a blend of tax hikes and separate cuts. Republicans, citing the tax-hike concessions they gave during the fiscal crisis talks, are averse to more tax increases - even if this time, those increases do not come in the form of rate hikes. Meanwhile, the White House said Sunday the president is due for more campaign-type activities, starting with a Wednesday kickoff on a public relations push on “strengthening the economy for the middle class and those striving to get there,” The Daily Caller reports.How in the hell could he possibly squeeze in any more campaigning? That's all he's done for the last 4 years. He probably forgot what his job REALLY is or maybe he knows and he's just in it for the perks and the applause from all the low information, low intelligence people that support him. He's got to love flying around in his own private jet at taxpayer's expense of $182,000/hour. 


Mr. Obama will insist that only “a thriving middle class” can stimulate long-term growth and that Americans must be given the tools to succeed, according to the officials, who discussed the speech on the condition of anonymity. His call for new government investments—many of which Republicans successfully blocked in his first term—is an effort to shift the emphasis away from simply reducing the deficit. . ."

Friday, February 8, 2013

Sequester'd Defense

The  United States of America out spends Russia , China  on
military defense. Has more military bases than any
nation combined world wide. Is it a sign of militarism ?
For the most of part debt ceiling has the nation pandering as usual .  Just were to cut . In simple terms . ## Our nation can not sustain the same spending as it did in the last decade . The part of the problem is that America has been crippled  for the most part by it's massive military spending . Two wars and  two occupations have made the nations government on the verge of collapse. Former president Dwight Eisenhower warned his fellow Americans of the potential for the military industrial complex growing out of control.  His fear was it becoming too strong a political force in America such that it would indulge in maintaining its size and influence at the expense of other needs of society. . Now  lawmakers in the U.S. Congress will be at each other’s throats again as they continue playing a favorite Washington parlor game: governing by crisis. This time around, though, it is the military and the safety of the nation that will be at the forefront of those decisions, as sequestration -- the capital's buzzword for automatic spending cuts -- is due to begin taking effect March 1. Last Year the nation face similar circumstances . On November 14, 2011, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta wrote a letter to Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham explaining the ramifications of the full sequestration defense cuts. Should these cuts take place over the next 10 years, he said, the United States would be left with its smallest ground force since World War II; the smallest Navy since 1915; the smallest fighter force in the history of the Air Force; and the smallest civilian work force in the Defense Department's history. Big spending , and over spending in the American military has not been this extravagant  even in President Reagan's time  20 years, and saw non-discretionary spending, i.e. personnel, health care and maintenance and operations, swallowing up the entire budget. Traditionally, the Defense Department spent 32 percent of its budget on modernization What's even more comical is that this whole sequestration business was the republican's condition for raising the debt ceiling.  They got what they bargained for, with a credit downgrade to top it off.   And now they are bitterly regretting, and all of a sudden it's the president's problem. We've been decimating Al Qaeda leadership for the last 3 years without endangering a single pilot or billion dollar aircraft. Despite all this, people like Bennett and Cheney insist that we need the same kind of military that we had during the Cold War. Why? Defense Secretary Leon Panetta warned Thursday.The United States is at risk of becoming a second-rate power if automatic budget cuts go into effect, plunging the U.S. armed forces into the most significant readiness crisis they’ve faced in more than a decade . At a ceremony honoring departing Defense Secretary Leon Panetta today, President Obama said there is "no reason" we cannot avoid the automatic defense cuts contained in the so-called sequester, cuts that he said will have a "severe impact on our military preparedness."  The president called on Democrats and Republicans "to come together" to avert the cuts "for the sake of our prosperity." Nevertheless, sequestration is poised to strike. Stripped of $492 billion, or nearly 10 percent of its budget, over fiscal years 2013–2021, the already reduced defense budget would be hit disproportionately. Meanwhile, entitlement programs—the greatest drivers of spending and future deficits—would be virtually left off limits.


 ## Below is an infographic courtesy of in showing what this cost meant as an opportunity cost to American society.  
Romney accused Obama of allowing the military to be cut to historically low levels through $1 trillion in cuts set to occur over the next decade because of last year’s Budget Control Act and sequestration.“Our Navy is smaller now than any time since 1916,” Romney said. “The Navy said it needed 313 ships, now it’s down to 285, and it’s headed down to the low 200s if we go through sequestration. That’s unacceptable to me.”
Obama responded by saying that sequestration happened because of Congress, not through his administration, and that it would not happen."First of all, the sequester is not something that I've proposed. It is something that Congress has proposed. It will not happen," Obama said.  Sequester was something created by Boehner and Obama to avoid the default..  Boehner demanding domestic cuts and Obama demanded Military cuts.  Ofcourse, it was voted and approved by the congress and signed by our President.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The President's Drones.

The President's new weapon .
Remember when Pres. Bush was clamored over his preemptive strike philosophy when waging the war against terrorism . Pres. Bush received an array of legal blistering from the far left including what Obama once totted when he was a Senator. According to the recent document that was leaked, and Press Secretary Jay Carney, it is OK for the president to use drones to kill U.S. citizens abroad, without using any kind of "enhanced techniques," or even a trial, for that matter. The White House and Justice Department on Tuesday adamantly defended the administration's authority to use unmanned drones to kill terror operatives -- even if those operatives are U.S. citizens -- following the release of a controversial memo on the program. This is disturbing, not so much the act but the process and justification. It's encouraging, however, to see that the Left isn't giving Obama a free ride on this one, much like the Right was wiling to do for George II. The pressure on John Brennan, Barack Obama's nominee for CIAdirector and the architect of the White House strategy on drones, intensified on Wednesday amid revelations of a secret CIA drone base in Saudi Arabia.The Obama administration and Saudi Arabia were silent over reports on Wednesday that the CIA is secretly using an air base in Saudi Arabia to conduct its controversial drone assassination campaign inneighbouring Yemen. The reports revealed that the drones that killed the US-born cleric Anwar al-Awlaki and his son in September 2011, and Said al-Shehri, a senior al-Qaida commander who died from his injuries last month, were launched from the unnamed base. The drone issue is sensitive in Saudi Arabia because of the unpopularity of US military bases, which were thought to have been largely removed after the 2003 invasion of Iraq.Saudi Arabia is home to the Islamic holy cities of Mecca and Medina, and the continued presence of US troops after the 1991 Gulf war was one of the stated motivations behind al-Qaida's 9/11 terrorist attacks and the Khobar Towers bombing five years earlier.The Islamic world is sensitive about Saudi Arabia--the holy land--being used by infidels to wage war against Muslims. Osama bin Laden used that as justification for the attacks on the embassies in Africa, and implied that it triggered the Sept. 11 attacks. Obama personally holds the reins on this expansive drone war, and he holds them tightly. But whatever internal processes he has created could be dismantled by his successors. According to leaks, Obama personally makes the hardest moral calls — whether to conduct strikes that will kill not just the targeted individuals but also women and children. Top administration lawyers vet the drone kill lists and vigorously debate the legality and morality of expanding strikes. No law requires this abundant caution. Whoever eventually inherits the drone war — Republican or Democrat. The drone war needs to be restrained because the technology is too tempting, appearing to offer a low-cost alternative to bloody counterinsurgencies. In the near-future, drone strikes might be deployed to new regions, to meet new threats, based on a belief in their precision and success.The rules for drone wars are still being written. The Bush White House spent eight years writing and revising the rules for a new kind of war against al-Qaida and other terrorist groups. It created novel detention and interrogation policies.
Obama pretty much washed his hands of those policies.
The White House on Wednesday directed the Justice Department to release classified documents discussing the legal justification for the use of drones in targeting American citizens abroad who are considered terrorist to the two Congressional intelligence committees, according to an administration official.No President should have the authority to order the execution of an American citizen without due process and any lawyer offering such an opinion is unfit for government service or admission to the Bar. And the Times in an editorial today observes that while the Obama drone kill policy outlined in the memo was not exactly a surprise “it was disturbing to see the twisted logic of the administration’s lawyers laid out in black and white. It had the air of a legal justification written after the fact for a policy decision that had already been made, and it brought back unwelcome memories of memos written for President George W. Bush to justify illegal wiretapping, indefinite detention, kidnapping, abuse and torture.”

Saturday, February 2, 2013

' The rich get richer' gleamed true this week.

Wall Street is doing fine this year @ 14,000 greed is
still the norm .
The phrase ' The rich get richer' gleamed true this week .If you look at the 2008 election... what swung Obama... what gave him the election was primarily financial institutions contributions - they preferred him to McCain. They expected to be paid back, and they were. And the next one will be even worse... Noam Chomsky said. The "fiscal cliff" compromise, even with all its chaos, controversy and unresolved questions, was enough to ignite the stock market on Wednesday, the first trading day of the new year.The Dow Jones industrial average careened more than 300 points higher, its biggest gain since December 2011. It's now just 5 percent below its record high close reached in October 2007. The Russell 2000, an index that tracks smaller companies, shot up to 873.42, the highest close in its history.When it comes to big, round numbers with major investment significance, 14,000 is as big as it gets for the Dow Jones industrial average.Higher tax rates on the rich Obviously the market is saying this is bad for industry. Well, maybe it will some day in the future.  Meanwhile, let's just sit back and ride it.So, seeing as the stock market has managed to reach record highs and the income of the richest 1% of the 1% is at all time highs, having grown by double digit percentages every year for years now, at the same time that huge numbers of ordinary Americans are still economically suffering, may we look forward to the complete and total denunciation of the insanity called "supply side economics" since it obviously doesn't work?The stock market is more a representation of how traders are feeling about the economy than the economy's underlying fundamentals. And many investors don't even think the Dow is the best way to track the market: They prefer the much bigger Standard & Poor's benchmark index, which follows 500 companies, because they think it represents a more accurate view of the economy.The last time the Dow was at 14000, gold was at $750. Now gold is at $1700 because of Federal Reserve inflationary monetary policies. For the Dow to have a comparable increase in valuation, it would need to be at over 33000. So why is everyone excited about 14000. It is still in the toilet compared to its all time high. Simple economics but the sheep will believe everything the media tells them.The supposed victimization of America's financial elite in the last few years has been almost entirely self-imagined. Sure, the Occupy movement sparked a national conversation about income inequality and spooked rich people into putting extra deadbolts on their beach houses. Sure, the one percent had been attacked in the media and targeted by politicians, including Obama, who wanted to raise their taxes.But besides hurt feelings and vague threats, the actual political and financial damage done to the Wall Street elite during Obama's first term was approximately nil. On the contrary, banker bonuses remained high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average nearly doubled, and corporations saw their profits grow an astounding 77.9 percent a year. Obama continued the Bush-era bailout plans for big banks, and rich people were still the beneficiaries of a friendly tax code, thanks in part to a carried-interest loophole that Obama never got around to rolling back. Their grip on the legislative branch was still strong, thanks to an army of paid lobbyists who were chipping away at Dodd-Frank and other regulation on Capitol Hill. No doubt despite popular perception Odummy and the Dems spend more time on their knees servicing Wall Street than anyone. The market could really take off if the economy would actually recover given all the money being held on the sidelines and overseas that may be tempted back in in such a scenario. Looks kind of like the 1930's somewhat with dopey gummint policies locking in an economic downturn and the dummies thinking that's ok because they have "programs" "helping" them. .
But we should be in an upswing in the business cycle now especially with cheap energy. This occurs in spite of policy of course. They may kill the Golden Goose of the American economy but haven't quite managed it yet.