Wednesday, May 31, 2006


Our County Commissioners and our City Council members are sitting back in silence, as taxpayers are stunned by the blatant misrepresentation of these leaders that urged their constituents to vote for two back to back SPLOSTS. I warned many people that this was what would happen, and questioned the reasoning of why anyone would vote for a tax increase. I have people call my office to see if they can save $10 on their tax return, by maybe giving another deduction or two. Now don't get me wrong, I work hard to get every deduction for clients. But it blew my mind when otherwise intelligent people said "I'm voting for the SPLOST because it is the fairest is time other people paid their fair share...", which was parroting back what Chairman Bishop, et al were busy sharing with people at every organization where a group could be gathered. No one would listen to me. People that seek my advice for tax preparation turned a deaf ear to what I tried to tell them. I told these clients that property reassessments were forthcoming, and that they would get hit with high property taxes. You know PT Barnum was right when he said, "there is a sucker born every minute." I said it before, and I will say it again that the media was instrumental in serving the SPLOSTs on a silver platter. I hold these journalists responsible for much of the financial mess that Macon and Bibb County is in because they are derelict in their duty to adequately inform the public about the downside of increasing taxes.


Monday, May 29, 2006


Lake Tobosofkee has some high property taxes. This homeowner was looking forward to buying a boat this year, but changed his mind and downsized to what he could afford when he received his tax reassessment.


Saturday, May 27, 2006


I have my dream car! I always wanted a red convertible, and is she not beautiful? Slightly over 38,000 miles, take a look at this 1992 Pontiac Firebird Convertible (1,260 made and they were produced in California). I don't think many ever made it to the east coast. I bought this on Ebay and had it shipped from Oregon. (well actually it is also my husbands but it is mine to drive-ha!). My husband probably regrets me watching Barrett Jackson Auctions with him.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


Now we are faced with jobs leaving Macon, not mediocre jobs, but jobs that put real private money into the local economy. Now we are left with a lopsided economy that is made up of more takers than givers. Supposedly, the SPLOST was going to pay off the jail expansion bonds that would eliminate debt service payments each year. What is the status of the SPLOST collections? Is the money coming in as projected? The government has outgrown its use in Macon and Bibb County.

We do not need two separate policing entities; we do not need a new court house; we do not need 15 City Council members; we do not need 5 County Commissioners. We need a merger that cuts this ridiculous government down to perhaps seven county wide managers, and we need one county wide police department. The Mayor's position could be reduced to a figure head position only that could cut out at least $700,000 from the City budget. Private businesses merge and cut out the fat because of have to positions, but those in the government turn a deaf ear to pleas from taxpayers for relief. The public works department needs to be privatized, as there must be a strike going on in the City. Take a look at the intersection of Spring Street and 16 exit where the grass is knee high, and take a look at 75 N along Riverside Drive to name just a few areas that look so bad. There is no excuse whatsoever that the grass is not cut along our roads, and if the government workers won't do their jobs then we need to hire people that will!

Who is going to force a consolidated government? Taxpayers could force consolidation by appealing property tax revaluations and tax increases. Property tax revaluations in this area are based upon variables that are falling apart as I type this blog. For one thing the revaluations were going on in 2004 when houses were inflated by the lowest mortgage interest rates in the last forty years. Lenders were much too generous with mortgage loans, and investors that could not afford expensive homes were able to buy homes with variable interest rates at artificially low starting rates or they were financed with balloon notes with no money down. We are the leading state for mortgage defaults and Bibb County is at the top of the list. Interest rates are on the rise, and when this happens it becomes a buyers market. Not only are we faced with rising interest rates in Bibb County, we are faced with increased crime and a population decline because good paying jobs have left the County. There is not a week that goes by that I do not get an update that at least six or seven vehicles have been stolen or that counterfeit money is circulating in the community.

How can our property be worth more in a County with all of the problems that I have described above? I have two rental properties in the Shirley Hills area, and now I am faced with having two of the nicest homes in Fleetwwood Downs. It makes me want to cry to look at the investments that I take pride in by looking just across the street at one home that has now been painted "Smurf Blue" , one home painted with red trim and another one painted pink! Then down the street another home owner has a monster truck parked in front with no less than five cars parked in the yard, and right next door to me a neighbor has what looks like a flea market in his back yard. I have no choice but to keep my homes up, put a nice fence aroud the back yard and hope that renters appreciate the modern appliances and the fact that I maintain the yards myself with a lawn service. I sure cannot sell these houses without a loss.

I pray that other home owners are smart enough to appeal their property tax revaluations because if enough of us do so then they will have to be thrown out. Will we ever get off this track that we are on in this County, and will we ever consolidate? That is the $64 million dollar question for sure.

Monday, May 22, 2006


Matthew 3

16And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
17And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Sunday, May 21, 2006


In Bibb County, we are faced with the sad fact that our education system is flawed with so many failing the science and math portions of exit exams. I am including a link from Stanford University that has an interesting take on what happens to high achieving white students in states that have exit exams. The states that have high school exit exams are mainly located in the South, and the authors of this particular article discuss that when schools focus too narrowly on achieving passing grades on high school exit exams that high achieving white students score lower on the SAT than their peers that go to schools where such tests are not given. Please see the article in the link above for more information.

I had a math teacher at a Bibb County public high school tell me how frustrated she was with trying to just teach the test to students. This teacher told me that the students that were intelligent became bored with the drills of repetitive questions that would be required for the test, and that she had to keep these high achievers suppressed to get the rest of the class prepared. This particular math teacher became frustrated and resigned. I have another friend that is a teacher in a public high school that must counsel students to get them enrolled in the right classes for graduation requirements, and he is so frustrated that so many rising seniors still cannot read! This dedicated teacher is getting a masters that will allow him to be a media specialist, and he will be able to work in the library. He told me that at least everyone that walks into the library should be able to read. Now this is so sad to me to hear these stories about our public schools.

It is ridiculous that at Macon State College students continually enroll in remedial classes to get prepared for regular college classes. A college is a school of higher learning, and I just do not get this dumbing down of a college degree.

Fortunately, we can afford to send our son to private school. I am sad for the children that cannot afford to go to a private school, as they are being robbed of a quality education and a future. I was a poor child in Indiana, but I got the same education as an upper middle income class child. I do not buy into the theory that financial status has anything to do with educational achievement. You either have the DNA for learning or you don't, and that is a fact.

Friday, May 19, 2006


Is the GOP ascendancy over?
by Patrick J. Buchanan

May 29, 2006
In America , parties enter periods of hegemony when they are seen as having resolved the crisis of the age.
Lincoln, the first Republican president, reunited in blood a Union that had sundered over his election and a Southern rebellion against the ascendancy of an industrializing North.
With the crushing of the Confederacy by the armies of Sherman and Grant, the assassination of Lincoln on Good Friday, 1865, and the abolition of slavery, the Republican Party appeared to have solved the crisis of the age. The GOP owned the patriotism issue, "waving the bloody shirt," and the morality issue, emancipation and thus became America 's Party.
From 1860 to 1932, the GOP produced 13 presidents, three of whom were assassinated. Democrats gave us only two, Cleveland and Wilson, both of whom owed their election to divisions within the Republican Party.
By 1930, however, the nation was mired in the Depression. The architects were not Smoot and Hawley, but, as Milton Friedman proved, the faceless men of the Federal Reserve.
Easy money had overheated the economy and sent stock prices into the stratosphere. In 1929 came the Crash. Margin calls went out. Savings were withdrawn to meet them. Banks collapsed. With no deposit insurance, savings were wiped out and a third of our money supply vanished. The Fed failed to replenish it.
To the rescue in 1932 came "Dr. New Deal." Though the great medicine man failed to heal the economy – unemployment was 17 percent in 1937 – FDR was seen as a leader of energy and ideas doing his best to rescue a nation plunged into Depression by corporate greed.
His act had about run out its course when war came, and though he campaigned in 1940 as Wilson had in 1916, on a pledge to keep us out of war, FDR steered us directly into the world storm. Then, like Lincoln , he died within days of victory, as the United States emerged as liberator and savior of Western Europe and first power on earth.
The Democratic ascendancy from 1932 to 1968 gave us four Democratic presidents – FDR, Truman, Kennedy and Johnson – while the GOP elected only the war hero Eisenhower. Democratic dominance of the Congress was even more pronounced. From 1930 to 1980, a half-century, Democrats held the Senate and House for 46 years.
What destroyed the New Deal coalition was liberalism's failure to cope with the crises of the 1960s: crime, Vietnam , and a moral and cultural revolution in which Democrats had a foot in both camps.
Nixon was the architect of Republican resurrection. After his 43 percent victory in 1968, comparable to Lincoln's vote in 1860, he sheared off of the New Deal coalition, on the issues of patriotism and morality, 10 million to 20 million Northern ethnic Catholics and Southern Protestant conservatives, whose families had voted Democratic for generations.
Though decried as a Southern Strategy, Nixon's was a national strategy. In 1972, he swept 49 states and 60 percent of the nation – a feat duplicated by Ronald Reagan in 1984.
From 1968 to 1992, a quarter-century, Republicans carried the White House in five of six national elections. By the midpoint and latter stages of this second Republican ascendancy, the party had achieved parity and was nearing hegemony at the congressional level.
All this is in peril today, as the Republican Party heads into a perfect storm in November that could sweep it away because it has failed not only to address the crisis of the age, but to comprehend it.
What is that crisis? America is today a nation bankrupt in the sense that it cannot meet all the IOUs the country has handed out.
We have an empire we cannot afford. We are committed to fight wars on every continent, but we lack the soldiers to fight them, as Latin America , the Middle East , Russia and China become anti-American.
We have Social Security and Medicare commitments to the baby boomers we cannot meet without a ruinous increase in taxes. We are running an unsustainable trade deficit of near $800 billion, financed by $2-billion-a-day borrowing from abroad that has begun to sink the dollar.
We have a shrinking industrial base and a growing dependence on China , Japan and other Asian nations for the necessities of our national life.
We have borders we cannot protect, as the Third World mounts an invasion of America . And we have a ruling party that is breaking up over these issues, as the Democratic Party of 1968 broke apart over Vietnam , riots and the cultural revolution. With this difference: America in '68 had a Republican Party and conservative movement ready to rule.
Few today have confidence in the party of Kennedy and Clinton, Kerry and Biden, Pelosi and Reid, Sharpton and Schumer.
In 1932, it took a Depression to bring to power new men and ideas. In 1968, it took a divisive war, urban riots, assassinations and a cultural revolution to convince America to turn away from the party of their fathers. What is the calamity that is coming this time?
© 2006 Creators Syndicate, Inc.

Thursday, May 18, 2006


My fifth grade son has been discussing the movie with other children at school, and he has told me that the movie is just fiction. Now this is where I intervene with my child's development, when I tell him that the Holy Bible and the King James Version is our word of the Lord. I do not believe in the theory of well let your children see that which contradicts the Lord, and allow them to determine what is fiction and what is truth.

The truth is that Jesus says in John "I am I am" and goes on to tell his disciples that "I came to save the world." Jesus goes on to say that he is not of this world, which is the thesis behind I am I am. I am is God the father, and Jesus is the trinity and the Alpha and the Omega. Jesus is God the father, God the Son and the Holy Ghost. Jesus was born in this world, but not of this world for he was born a son to the Virgin Mary. The idea of the Dan Brown blasphemous novel, The Da Vinci Code, is to place doubt on the word of the Lord. The word of the Lord is not open to debate by we sinners of the world, and the Lord could if he desire return at any hour which is not known to any mortal being. If I plant the seed in my young son's mind that his faith begins with the Holy Bible then he will understand that more when he becomes a man than he could possibly grasp as a ten year old. Jesus wanted his young children to know him, and to understand his offer of grace and love to them. Jesus is sad to see his young children growing up in this evil world where the media gives free advertising to this movie that is directed by Ron Howard.

On the other hand, the media constantly attacked the Passion of the Christ that was directed and funded by Mel Gibson. The media warned that it was much too violent for young viewers, while at the same time never attacking the "Nightmare on Elm Street" movies or the "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" movies. Oh it is just fine to take children to see bloody and gross horror movies, but when one chooses to to take their children to a very well produced depiction of the Passion then those that tell us Christians how to practice our religion and live our lives are told that this movie should have an R rating!

From what I understand Dan Brown the writer of the Da Vinci Code is a Jew, but this may be incorrect because I know that what one reads on the Internet is not always true. if this is a true fact, then it may be argued that he is being blasphemous against Christianity with a motive in mind. The Jews stand firm in their belief that Jesus is not their Messiah, and they are the ones in control of the media so it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that they are loving this propaganda against Christianity. Those that discuss the film in the media talk about the attack of the Catholic Church, but it is actually an attack on all sects of Christianity. It is no mystery that Jesus came down hard on the Jews that threw stones at him, and he told them that they were children of Satan. I am not making this up, you can read John in the New Testament. The controversy started in Jesus time, and it continues today. I will not see the movie nor will I take my child to see it, as it is up to me to help carry the cross of Christ and to lead by example. We have become luke warm in our faith because we have allowed the Anti-Christ to wittle away at our belief structure. As a Christian, I know that there is not a shred of luke warm belief that Jesus held to. Jesus is I am, and I am is the word. In Jesus Christ's name I pray that Christians will teach their children the word of the Holy Bible. Amen.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006


Whose God May We Mock?
by Patrick Buchanan

May 16, 2006
If "such lies and errors had been directed at the Quran or the Holocaust," said Archbishop Angelo Amato, the Vatican's secretary for the congregation for the doctrine of the faith, "they would have justly provoked a world uprising."
The archbishop was speaking of "The Da Vinci Code," the Ron Howard film that debuts at Cannes and opens worldwide this week, and is expected to gross $500 million by summer's end.
The archbishop's point is undeniable. Blasphemous cartoons of the Prophet with a bomb in his turban, published a few months ago in a Danish newspaper and reprinted on the front pages of Europe's major papers, ignited demonstrations in Muslim communities across Europe and violent and deadly riots across the Islamic world.
Leaders friendly to the West, from Egypt to Afghanistan, felt compelled to denounce the cartoons, as did many in the West, as a provocation and insult to the faith of a billion people.
In the 1990s, the British novelist Salman Rushdie spent years in hiding after Ayatollah Khomeini issued a "fatwa" calling for his killing for publishing the blasphemous "Satanic Verses." In the 1970s, the film "Muhammad," starring Anthony Quinn, was pulled from many U.S. theaters after bomb threats. The film had offended Muslim faithful by showing the face of Muhammad.
Last February, British historian David Irving, whose books on World War II have sold in the millions, was convicted in an Austrian court of Holocaust denial and sentenced to three years in prison. His crime: In two speeches in Austria in 1989, Irving asserted there were no gas chambers at Auschwitz. Though he recanted in court, it did not save him. Prosecutors felt his sentence was too light.
Karen Pollock of Great Britain's Holocaust Education Trust applauded the verdict: "Holocaust denial is anti-Semitism dressed up as intellectual debate. It should be regarded as such and treated as such." In nine countries of Europe, Holocaust denial is a crime. In the United States, to deny the Holocaust happened or suggest that it has been exaggerated is not a crime, but marks one down as a social leper.
If you would know who wields cultural power, ask yourself: Whom is it impermissible to offend? Thus the hoopla attending the release of "The Da Vinci Code," based on the Dan Brown novel that has sold 7 million copies in the United States, tells us something about whose God it is permissible to mock and whose faith one is allowed to assault.
For what "The Da Vinci Code" says is that Roman Catholicism is a gigantic fraud, that the church has for centuries been perpetrating a monstrous hoax, duping hundreds of millions into believing something it knows is a bald-faced lie. At the novel's heart lies the contention that Jesus and Mary Magdalene were married, that they had a daughter, that the Vatican has known this and been hiding the descendants of Jesus, that Opus Dei is a secret order whose agents will engage in murder to protect the secret.
Leonardo da Vinci's painting "The Last Supper" is said to hold the secret, as Jesus is portrayed touching the hand of the youngest apostle, John, who holds the place of honor at his side – and who is, on close inspection, Mary Magdalene.
In Catholic teaching and tradition, the Holy Grail is the chalice that contained the blood of Jesus. In the book, the Holy Grail is Mary Magdalene, carrying the flesh and blood of Jesus in her womb.
If "The Da Vinci Code" is based upon facts, no other conclusion follows than that to be a Catholic is either to be in on this fraud or to be the dupe of those perpetuating it. But if it is fiction, why would Hollywood put out so viciously anti-Catholic a film that can only have the effect of undermining the faith of millions of Christians?
Putting "The Da Vinci Code" on film, with what it alleges about the Catholic Church, is the moral equivalent of making a movie based on the "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion" and implying this is the truth about the Jewish plot to control the world. One imagines Ron Howard and Tom Hanks would take a pass on that script.
Like the "Hitler's Pope" smear of Pius XII, a man who did more than any other to save the Jews in World War II, "The Da Vinci Code" is a Big Lie that, though readily refuted by the facts, will be believed.
But that it will be a box-office smash, that it is the subject of lavish praise in the press, that it is the best-selling novel of the 21st century, tells us we live not just in a post-Christian era, but in an anti-Catholic culture not worth defending or saving, for it is truly satanic.

Friday, May 12, 2006


May 12, 2006
'Comrade Wolf' and the Mullahs
by Patrick J. Buchanan

In the 27 years since the Iranian Revolution, the United States has launched air strikes on Libya, invaded Grenada, put Marines in Lebanon, and run air strikes in the Bekaa Valley and Chouf Mountains in retaliation for the Beirut bombing.
We invaded Panama, launched Desert Storm to liberate Kuwait, and put troops into Somalia. Under Clinton, we occupied Haiti, fired cruise missiles into Sudan, intervened in Bosnia, conducted bombing strikes on Iraq, and launched a 78-day bombing campaign against Serbia, a nation that never attacked us. Then, we put troops into Kosovo.
After the Soviet Union stood down in Eastern Europe, we moved NATO into Poland and the Baltic states and established U.S. bases in former provinces of Russia's in Central Asia.
Under Bush II, we invaded Afghanistan and Iraq, though it appears Saddam neither had weapons of mass destruction nor played a role in 9/11.
Yet, in this same quarter century when the U.S. military has been so busy it is said to be overstretched and exhausted, Iran has invaded not one neighbor and fought but one war: an eight-year war with Iraq where she was the victim of aggression. And in that war of aggression against Iran, we supported the aggressor.
Hence, when Iran says that even as we have grievances against her, she has grievances against us, does Iran not have at least a small point? And when Russian President Putin calls Bush's America "Comrade Wolf," does he not have at least a small patch of ground on which to stand?
Which brings me to the point. There is no reason to believe Iran wants war with us. If she did want war with America, she could have had it any time in the last 27 years. If she did want war with America, all the old ayatollah had to do was continue holding those American hostages after Ronald Reagan raised his right hand. He didn't. As Reagan recited the oath, the hostages were clearing Iranian air space.
In all those years, Iran has never attacked the United States and has been tied to but one terror attack against us: the Khobar Towers 10 years ago. No evidence has been found that Iran had any role in 9/11, the first attack on the World Trade Center, the suicide attack on the USS Cole, or the embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania.
Comes the reply. Iran was almost surely behind the bombing of the U.S. embassy and Marine barracks in Lebanon in 1983 and the hostage-taking of the Reagan era. Iran supports Hezbollah and Hamas and plotted the bombing of the Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, and Herr Ahmadinejad routinely promises the eradication of Israel.
But if he wants a war with Israel, he could have it tomorrow by launching rockets. If he wants war with America, Bush and Cheney will accommodate him. He has done neither.
Ahmadinejad is behaving like a man provoking us to hit him, but not too hard, so he can play the "victim" of U.S. "aggression" without winding up in the hospital or the morgue.
For while Iran's regime might benefit from heroically enduring U.S. strikes to destroy its nuclear facilities – none of which is near producing atom-bomb material – a major war would be a disaster for Iran. Not only would the regime be denuded of modern weapons, it would be set back decades to where the Arabs, Azeris, Baluchis, and Kurds might try to break the country up, even as Iraq is breaking up.
But this would be a disaster for the United States as well. For an attack on Iran would unify Persians in hatred of America, the way Pearl Harbor unified Americans. And a breakup of Iran could create a new archipelago of terrorist training camps across the Middle East.
What we are getting at is that there is common ground between the United States and Iran. Neither of us would benefit from a major war. Both of us benefit if there is a reliable flow of oil and gas out of the Gulf and Central Asia. Neither of us wants to see the return of the Taliban or rise of al-Qaeda, which is anti-Shi'ite. In his 18-page letter, Ahmadinejad powerfully condemned the massacre of 9/11.
And Tehran must be having second thoughts about whether to go nuclear when that could mean Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt might follow suit, and the United States and Israel would put a hair trigger on their missile arsenals, and target them on Tehran.
Better to talk. To test the waters, President Bush might take up Ahmadinejad's missive, manifest the same respect for Islam that he showed for Jesus of Nazareth, rebut his attacks on America, and lay down what Bush would like to see in a future relationship with Iran.
We have much to talk about: terror, nuclear power, Afghanistan, Iraq, Palestine, oil, what we owe Iran, and what Iran owes us.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006


The liberals would have you believe that because of President Clinton's leadership skills, that the national debt actually decreased. Well perhaps, we did collect more tax revenue durnig those treacherous eight years of Clinton's presidency. I have a few points for people to ponder:

During this time period, the Congress came up with a plan whereby traditional IRA's could be converted to Roth IRA's, and the tax could be spread out over four years. This was because of that artificial economy called the Dot Com boom, where stocks were trading at 200 times earnings. Some companies actually had no earnings, but it did not matter because the momentum investors bought these loser stocks like there was no tomorrow. So here you have it, investors retirement accounts were at such high amounts that many people were the new jet setter millionaires or they were well on their way to that status. The theory was pay your taxes now, and let your account grow to another cool million in a Roth IRA and owe no additional taxes when you retire.

Well, we all know what happened when the bust happened and stocks took a nose dive. The IRS and the states that taxed came out smelling like a rose, but here were all of the investors who had paid taxes on perhaps million dollar accounts, but their new fangled Roth IRAs were only worth maybe $200,000, if they were lucky. Now there were many people that may have converted only $100,000, but those accounts fell accordingly.

Then another fact about the booming pre Y2K years was that the mutual funds that held these same stocks in taxable accounts (not deferred) had the same explosive gains. Now these gains were distributed in mutual fund accounts in the form of capital gain distributions, and taxpayers were taxed during these years at much higher capital gain rates than we have in place today. And then, for those investors that sold their stocks in taxable accounts with gains, those gains were also taxed. Just remember that the Clinton era reaped hefty returns for the United States Treasury at the expense of investors who are now left with devalued investments, and the liberals have a lapse of memory of just who paid all of the taxes on these investments!

So when you hear that national debt debate that will take place in 2008, you will know that the liberals are spinning the facts. I will give Clinton credit because he did come up with an unusual use for cigars, but he did nothing to help my investment account nor did he solve the national debt problem.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


I must share as a Christian, a message from the Lord. Last evening, I went to bed much too late after doing my usual surfing on the web and watching “24″. I was tossing and turning listening to the large planes come in and out of the base, and worrying about our Country with immigration problems, with Iran problems, with bird flu problems, and on and on. I longed for those care free days in the 70s, when I was young and there seemed to be no troubles in the world, and ask why is it that things are worse today? I had an urge to turn on the light and open the Bible to a message (I have done this some but not often enough). This is the miracle of God’s answer to me that proves that God is a living God and knows our hearts.
I opened the Bible to the book of Ecclesiastes, and my eyes were directed to Chapter 7, Verse 10: “Say not thou. What is the cause that the former days were better than these? For thou dost not enquire wisely concerning this.”
This book in the Bible is from the wisdom of King Solomon, and is the guiding message that the works of man without God is an empty void.
I believe that if our leaders took their wisdom from the Lord, military action against Iran would be off the table.


Patrick Buchanan
Why are we baiting Putin?
Posted: May 9, 20061:00 a.m. Eastern
© 2006 Creators Syndicate Inc.
"[N]o legitimate interest is served when oil and gas become tools of intimidation or blackmail, either by supply management or attempt to monopolize transportation," thundered Vice President Cheney to the international pro-democracy conference in Vilnius, Lithuania.
"[N]o one can justify actions that undermine the territorial integrity of a neighbor, or interfere with democratic movements."
Cheney's remarks were directed straight at the Kremlin and President Vladimir Putin, who is to host the G-8 Conference in July.
Cheering Cheney on is John McCain, front-runner for the GOP nomination, who has urged President Bush to snub Putin by boycotting the G-8 summit. What the GOP is thus offering the nation right now is seven more years of in-your-face bellicosity in foreign policy.
What does McCain think we would accomplish – other than a new parading of our moral superiority – by so public an insult to Putin and Russia as a Bush boycott of the St. Petersburg summit? Do we not have enough trouble in this world, do we not have enough people hating us and Bush that we have to get into Putin's face and antagonize the largest nation on earth and a co-equal nuclear power? What is the purpose of this confrontation diplomacy? What does it accomplish?
Eisenhower and Nixon did not behave like this. Nor did Ford or Bush's father. Reagan called the Soviet Union an "evil empire" once. But the Soviet Union we confronted in those years was hostile. Until lately, today's Russia was not. Yet the Bush boys are in their pulpits, admonishing the world's sinners every day.
What is their beef with Putin's policy?
In January, Putin decided to stop piping subsidized gas to Kiev and start charging the market price. Reason: Ukraine's president, elected with the assistance of U.S. foundations and quasi-government agencies, said he was reorienting Kiev's foreign policy away from Russia and toward NATO and the United States.
If you are headed for NATO, Putin was saying to President Viktor Yushchenko, you can forget the subsidized gas.
Now this is political hardball, but it is a game with which America is not altogether unfamiliar. When Castro reoriented his policy toward Moscow, Cuba's sugar allotment was terminated. U.S. diplomats went all over the world persuading nations not to buy from or sell to Cuba. Economic sanctions on Havana endure to today. We supported, over Reagan's veto, sanctions on South Africa. We have used sanctions as a stick and access to the U.S. market as a carrot since we became a nation. What, after all, was "Dollar Diplomacy" all about?
Cheney accuses Moscow of employing pipeline diplomacy – i.e., using its oil and gas pipelines to benefit some nations and cut out others. But the United States does the same thing, as it seeks to have the oil and gas of Central Asia transmitted to the West in pipelines that do not transit Iran or Russia.
"[N]o one can justify actions that undermine the territorial integrity of a neighbor," declared Cheney in Vilnius. How the vice president could deliver that line with a straight face escapes me.
Does Cheney not recall our "Captive Nations Resolutions," calling for the liberation of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, which, though free between the two world wars, had long belonged to the Russian empire? Does he not recall conservative support for the breakup of the Soviet Union? Does he not recall conservative support for the secession of Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia, and more recently Kosovo, from a Serb-dominated Yugoslavia?
What concerns Cheney is Moscow's support for the secession of Abkhazia and South Ossetia from Georgia. Georgia's president was also elected with the aid of pro-democracy NGOs, mostly funded by Uncle Sam. All these color-coded revolutions in East Europe and Central Asia bear the label, Made in the U.S.A.
When Cheney says, "No one can justify actions that ... interfere with democratic movements," he is hauling water for Freedom House, headed by ex-CIA Director James Woolsey, and similar agencies, which Putin wants shut down or kicked out of Russia for interfering in her internal affairs.
We Americans consider the Monroe Doctrine – no foreign power is to come into our hemisphere – to be holy writ. Why, then, can we not understand why Russia might react angrily to our interference in her politics or the politics of former Russian republics?
The effect of U.S. expansion of NATO deep into Eastern Europe, U.S. interference in the politics of the former Soviet republics, and U.S. siting of military bases in the Balkans, Eastern Europe and Central Asia has been to unite Russia and China, and undo the diplomacy of several successive U.S. presidents.
How has this made us more secure?
If we don't want these people in our backyard, what are we doing in theirs? If we don't stop behaving like the British Empire, we will end up like the British Empire.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Tuesday, May 02, 2006


you should watch the Bernanke video.


State flexes its incentives

Rob Christensen, Staff Writer
When Andy Schindler, chairman of R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., stepped up to the podium last week, he admitted that he had some unusual economic news -- it was good.
The news conference was not about layoffs, plants being packed off to Mexico or about Chinese imports flooding the country.
Schindler, dapper in a double-breasted suit, announced that RJR would add 800 to 1,000 jobs in Winston-Salem as a result of the merger between RJR and Brown & Williamson.
Of course, there was an asterisk.
The taxpayers have to come up with an incentives package of at least $19 million and renew a tax credit worth at least $6 million annually to bring the RJR jobs to Winston-Salem.
Standing at Schindler's side, Gov. Mike Easley assured reporters that this money would not go up in smoke. And Easley said he had the commitment to shell out tax incentives, extend tax breaks and provide relocation costs to get the cigarette jobs. The proposed RJR jobs pay an average of $56,500 per year.
"I said I would do whatever it takes -- within reason," he said.
In fact, Easley did everything but light up a Salem.
For weeks, Easley has been criticized by Republican opponents for not being visible enough on economic development issues. Last week, Easley sought to offset some of the criticism by performing an economic development hat trick.
Besides sweet-talking RJR, Easley was in Charlotte to announce that Goodrich Corp., a global aerospace and defense system supplier, announced it was adding 300 new jobs to its plant in Monroe. Later in the week, Easley was in Wilmington, where he announced that General Electric's nuclear energy division was shifting 200 jobs from California's Silicon Valley to the port city.
In all three instances, the state used taxpayer incentives pushed through the legislature to help recruit businesses.
"North Carolina has the tools it needs to recruit industry and is willing to use them," Easley said. "We have the most favorable business climate in the country right now as rated by several magazines."
"I am hoping this is just a start," the governor added. "There are so many companies we are close to getting. But they are holding back on expansion" until the economy improves.
To help home-grown businesses, Easley is considering asking the legislature for a targeted corporate income tax cut for small businesses that would exclude the tax on the first $25,000 to $50,000 of annual profits.
The governor is reluctant to say North Carolina's economy is turning a corner. He said there are too many textile and furniture jobs still being lost overseas.
Even with the new plants, the economic news last week was mixed. Duke Energy said it would slash its work force by 2,000 jobs, including about 400 in Charlotte and an unknown number in the Triangle.
On the other hand, Ken Lewis, a former Rocky Mount high school football teammate of Easley's, announced the merger of the Charlotte-based Bank of America and FleetBoston Financial Corp.
Robert E. Lee got only as far as Gettysburg. Lewis is taking over New England.
Staff writer Rob Christensen can be reached at 829-4532 or

© Copyright 2006, The News & Observer Publishing CompanyA subsidiary of The McClatchy Company

BY BEEBEE: I listened to 940 this morning to a caller named Mark talking about his lost job at B&W, and how Governor Perdue did not do everything he could do to save Brown and Williamson. Look at the facts, we had North Carolina offering a measely $19 million in tax incentives and $6 million in tax credits per year to get this deal to go through. What is that to get 1,000 new jobs that pay $58,000 per year? But Jami G. and Kenny B. will tout a convention hotel that will allow locals to get a good return with basically no risk of capital for service industry jobs that pay below the poverty line. It makes no sense, but nothing makes sense in Macon. We should have fought to keep Brown and Williamson in Macon, but greed ruled the day, as our politicians thought that the modern plant in Macon was just too big for B&W to walk away from. Georgia Senator Max Cleland would not work with Brown and Williamson by helping with the big state lawsuits against big tobacco. On the other hand, the North Carolina legislature passed legislation barring their state attorney from participating in the original lawsuits brought by the first four states against big tobacco. It is not smart governance to allow one of the largest industries in Georgia to leave the state. You do not take a cash cow for granted, and all the politicians had to do was study just why did Brown and Williamson leave Louiville, Kentucky to move to Macon, Georgia. When employees of B&W marched in downtown Macon in opposition of increased federal excise taxes, there was ZERO support from the Macon community. My husband participated in the march, and there was not even a place open to purchase a cup of coffee! Downtown was a ghost town on this particular Saturday morning.

Monday, May 01, 2006


If we remain passive, this may be the flag we salute, if we continue to sit back and allow massive illegal immigration of Mexicans into our country. I have nothing against Mexicans, and they have a right to come to the United States LEGALLY! And the Mexicans should learn English to live here. entienda a amigos (understand friends).

CONTACT: Will Adams
October 14, 2005

Tancredo Asks ACLU to Defend Politically-Targeted Student
Illinois Student Disciplined for Refusing to Stand During Mexican National Anthem

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Tom Tancredo (R-CO) asked the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) to defend an embattled Illinois student who was targeted by his school’s administration for refusing to stand during a recitation of the Mexican National Anthem.

Robert Bedard’s son, a student at Larkin High School in Elgin, Chicago, refused to stand when the Mexican National Anthem was played at a cultural awareness program. Bedard, speaking for his son because he is a minor, complained that his son was being coerced into showing support for a foreign government, arguing, “I would be happy if they will not try to force students to honor patriotic elements of another culture unless they also honor our flag, our anthem as well.”

Tancredo wrote the ACLU’s President asking that she defend Bedard. The Congressman questioned why the so-called nonpartisan organization had not come to Bedard’s aid when it had recently argued that students not be forced to recite the American Pledge of Allegiance, and when the Mexican National Anthem invokes religious belief such as: “Oh fatherland/ Your forehead shall be girded with olive garlands,/ by the divine archangel of peace/ For in heaven your eternal destiny/ has been written by the hand of God.”

Tancredo’s letter is printed below:

Ms. Nadine Strossen
American Civil Liberties Union
125 Broad Street
18th Floor New York, NY 10004

Dear Ms. Strossen,

As you may know, a student in an Illinois public school was recently disciplined by school authorities for choosing to stay seated during the playing of the Mexican National Anthem. According to press reports, the student was concerned that paying homage to a foreign government by standing may have jeopardized his upcoming enlistment in the military.
The case has received some attention in the media, and I was wondering if your organization plans to take any action on behalf of this student, or any of the other students who may have felt coerced by the “officially sponsored” nature of the activity.

As recently as 2003, the Colorado chapter of the ACLU filed a lawsuit in federal district court challenging the constitutionality of school sponsored recitations of the Pledge of Allegiance. The ACLU’s state legal director at that time told the media, “Public expressions of belief in the ideals of liberty and justice should be voluntary, not coerced.” If the ACLU feels that asking students to recite the Pledge of Allegiance constitutes “coercion”, I would imagine you would be equally concerned when students are compelled to pay homage to a foreign nation.

Additionally, one verse of the Mexican Anthem starts with the following words: For in heaven your eternal destiny, has been written by the hand of God. The ACLU is well known for its ongoing effort to banish religious references from every corner of the American public square, and these lyrics are at least as religious as the Pledge. After reading the words, I was doubly surprised that your group has not already sprung into action to characterize the event as an unconstitutional “establishment of religion.” I look forward to hearing from you on the ACLU’s plans as they apply to this case. Thank you in advance for your time. Sincerely, Tom Tancredo Member of Congress ###


May 8, 2006 IssueCopyright © 2006 The American Conservative
Regime Crisis
by Patrick J. Buchanan
At this writing, France has capitulated to mass demonstrations and canceled a labor law that would have let employers dismiss workers under 26.
For the French, the cave-in is truly bad news. It means the political system is not strong enough to take even modest measures to liberate France from a socialist system that is a freshwater fish in the salt waters of the Global Economy.
If despair and gloom are widespread in France, they are justified. With a birthrate below what is needed to continue as a French nation, its 5-8 million Arab and Islamic immigrants alienated, a limping economy, and no way to cast off socialist shackles, France’s future appears grim.
In America, too, a regime crisis appears at hand.
Millions have massed in cities from Los Angeles to Phoenix to Dallas to Washington to demand that 12 million illegal aliens be granted full rights of U.S. citizens and all talk of defending U.S. borders be halted at once. Republican and Democratic politicians have been rendered speechless by the size of the demonstrations.
But the demonstrations reveal something more unsettlling. That hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens, all subject to deportation, would defiantly march under foreign flags in U.S. cities suggests the government of the United States has lost its moral authority.
For two decades, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush have failed—or rather refused—to do their constitutional duty to defend the states from this invasion. Now the message had gone out to the world. Americans can’t or won’t defend their country. We can walk in and take over. And they are coming in the millions, every year.
And where is our commander in chief? He backs McCain-Kennedy, the bill to grant amnesty to the 12 million and blanket pardons to the corporate chiselers who hired them and passed on to taxpayers the costs of their health, education, and welfare.
This would put the illegals on the road to lifetime benefits from our welfare state and allow U.S. companies to go overseas and hire hundreds of thousands of workers yearly to bring back to replace Americans who balk at working for Third World wages.
This is the opposite of what Americans have told pollsters for 20 years they want. It is the opposite of what Arizonans and Californians have voted for every time they have held a referendum.
According to a new Washington Post-ABC poll, 60 percent of the people now disapprove of Bush’s performance, the strongest repudiation of his leadership since January 2001. And the Republicans who control Congress are running 15 points behind the Democrats. If the elections of 2006 were held today, the GOP would be annihilated.
But what do the Democrats offer us? Censure, taxes—and Cynthia McKinney.
If you think this Congress is an agonizing disappointment, wait for the new House, where chairmanships will be assumed by Barney Frank, John Conyers, and Henry Waxman, with Ways and Means and tax-writing power going to Charlie Rangel. That should be good for a 1000-point plunge in the Dow.
What is the probability of tough legislation to halt the invasion and put the U.S. government back in control of its frontiers? Given the makeup of this Senate—with Democrats virtually united in their resolve to make those 12 million illegal aliens new Democratic voters, and half the GOP terrified of being called “racist” or “xenophobic”—zero.
Indeed, if such a law were passed, it is questionable Bush would enforce it. For he has refused to enforce existing law or defend our southern border and has stated flatly he cannot secure the border unless given an amnesty/guest-worker program to go with it.
And who is the likely replacement for Bush in 2009? Hillary or McCain, both now competing with each other in the generosity of the amnesties they would bestow.
America is facing something of a regime crisis. The president’s poll number are falling not simply because of perceived incompetence—Katrina, Harriet Miers, the Dubai ports deal—but because his policies are failing. His trade policy has created the greatest trade deficits in history and accelerated the death of U.S. manufacturing. His immigration
policy has left our borders undefended and millions of illegals marching for their “rights” under foreign flags. His democracy crusade is being ridden to power by anti-Americans from the Middle East to Latin America. His Iraq expedition has given us endless bleedings of blood and money.
What does McCain offer? On trade, immigration, and Iraq, he is 100 percent Bush. If Mexican radical Obrador wins in July and appears headed for the presidency, Americans may be looking around for a General Pershing. At least “Black Jack” understood border control.
May 8, 2006 Issue


A new organization has been started. Informed Citizens United, ICU, will meet at Fuddruckers at 6:30 P.M. the second Thursday of each month. The next meeting is scheduled for May11, 2006. The group meets to discuss local issues of importance and get involved to findsolutions for problems they identify. You can become part of those solutions, so get involved and join your neighbors at Fuddruckers. The public is invited.

The above is a Houston County organization newly formed by Dave Wittenberg et al. This Fudruckers is in Warner Robins, and concerned citizens in Bibb County may attend. We need to have numbers to fight an abusive government, and can no longer leave government to chance. Tell your friends about this important group. Please see Atwitsend link in my links on the right! Posted by BeeBee.