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In response to:

Reality of the IRS Scandal

Pete from CA Wrote: Jul 13, 2014 3:03 PM
It's a HUGE scandal. Much bigger than Watergate. Most likely goes right to the Whitehouse, which is why so many emails are "lost" etc. Even without the Senate, the House is where spending bills originate. The house should drop these provisions into the next spending bill, preferably something that MUST PASS. (Like the $3.7 Billion request for the border mess that's yet another Obama scandal.) 1. The total IRS budget should be cut by 10% based on the current actual spending level (not some fake decrease that's really only a decrease of the increase). 2. All (repeat ALL) IRS managers should have their pay immediately cut by 20%. (No, they won't all quit -- you see, they're mostly not qualified for any other work.) This pay cut should also include a freeze on ALL IRS pay rates, with no increases for any reason allowed, even if the employee is promoted to another job (they can just retain their old pay rate) or if an employee "qualifies" for a time-related increase (some government jobs have automatic pay raises after various periods of time). Finally NO BONUS payments of any kind should be allowed. Further, all IRS employes should be "frozen" to the IRS -- with no promotions or transfers to other government agencies or departments. (Since slavery was abolished, IRS employees may quit -- but then they should be restricted to not be hired by any other Federal agency or department.) 3. Finally, any Federal Employee at any level who has been held in contempt of Congress (by a vote or either house) should be restricted from receiving any check from the U.S. Treasury (or other Federal government account) for any reason, including pension, sick leave, or medical insurance. That may get the attention of Ms. Lerner (who "retired") and Mr. Holder (who has arrogantly remained in office without disclosing his role in the "Fast & Furious" gun scandal)>
"Left Officially Declares War on God" Ok, if God is real, then He has nothing to worry about. After all, he's all powerful and all knowing. Indeed, He has a plan for each of us. This must be part of his plan. Ok, if god is simply a figment of human imagination, then it doesn't really matter anyway, as the religious fools will continue to believe (faith is belief without proof). So, it doesn't much matter either way, does it?
Because the U.S. Dollar is a global "reserve currency" we can, in effect, export some of our inflation. While prices remain more or less stable at home, prices in other countries rise. For example, oil, priced in dollars, now costs about $104 per bbl. This hits countries that must convert their currency to dollars to buy the oil with inflationary problems, while reducing the effect on the U.S.
1. Currently, economic policy is in the hands of Keynesian economists. Like the failed policies of socialism, Keynesian economics (another proven failed policy) is popular with those who wish to force us into a Euro-Socialist Democracy. In no case has any variety of socialism worked. We can see the disasters of N.Korea and Cuba -- and we can see Venezuela falling apart as we watch. Socialism/communism has failed in the USSR, China, Chile, and in Europe, where many countries are moving away from collectivist/socialist solutions and are evolving toward more free markets. The end result of Keynesian and Socialist based policies is impoverishment for all (except the ruling elite). 2. The Federal Reserve has caused far more problems since its creation than it has solved. While there may be reasonable arguments for having a central bank (though I have my doubts) the primary job of the central bank should be to ensure that the value of the dollar remain stable. We thrived for the first 120+ years of our Republic with the gold standard -- and that was thrown out by Franklin Roosevelt in 1933, when he devalued the dollar from $20=1oz gold to $35=1oz gold. Nixon completely un-hitched the dollar from gold during his term. Today 1 oz gold will set you back by $1350 (more or less). That demonstrates an astounding amount of inflation in the last 50 years. Indeed, the Federal Reserve is not 100 years old. Our dollar today, is worth less than 5 cents of the 1914 dollar. That is NOT a stable currency. We need to return to our Constitutional basics. The Federal Government should quit spending so much as every dollar spent by the government is a dollar taken out of the private economy. There is no such thing as a "multiplier effect." There is a function of "starving" the economy by the government taking more than it's "fair share." Finally, the softness in housing prices at the low end is, in large part, got to do with current lending standards. In the recent past, the _median_ FICO score for new mortgages was 790 (out of 800!). The wealthy qualify, the much less wealthy do not. Expensive houses can be financed by well-heeled buyers. Less expensive houses can't get financing by middle class workers with more typical FICO scores that run about 650 to 750. These problems are ALL the result of Federal monetary and fiscal policies -- along with regulatory policies. We need a smaller government that has the primary duty of protecting individual rights.
In response to:

Obama's Incompetence Sinks In

Pete from CA Wrote: Jul 09, 2014 2:12 PM
However, the miscalculation is the inability to control alternative information sources. Back in the days of Wilson, FDR, LBJ, and Carter, the left has benefited from left-leaning press giving them a pass for their ill-thought-out policies. The Internet era provides interested citizens the ability to actually find information that the press chooses not to report: The global warming meme (designed to scare the population into accepting more taxes and more regulation), the various scandals (Obamacare roll-out, Benghazi, fast & furious gun running, VA waiting lists, IRS targeting free speech, and so on) are being reported outside the leftist 'mainstream" media -- and Obama's popularity continues to shrink.
The House has two powers that it has not effectively used: 1. Spending and tax bills must originate in the House. Don't fund what you don't want. For example, the IRS has become recalcitrant about revealing the breadth of their corruption in the silencing of conservative political groups. So, cut the IRS budget by 20% AND cut all IRS managers salaries by 25%. That will get their attention -- where it hurts most -- in the pocket book. Also, "defund" Lois Lerner's payments, by restricting any payments to current and former government employees who are currently held in contempt of Congress. (That'll also "get" Eric Holder.) These are things that will get a reaction. And yes, it is worth risking a shut down of the government if the Senate won't pass the bills and/or the President won't sign 'em. 2. Impeach Mr. Obama. He has repeatedly violated the Constitution and his oath of office. That is EXACTLY what the impeachment provision of the Constitution is about. I note that this would all work better once the Democrats no longer control the Senate. In the meantime, these pointless lawsuits (that'll probably be tossed out of court) are meaningless. The Democrats in the Senate are being very, very stupid to let the President intrude so deeply in the areas that are the responsibility of Congress. They simply set up the precedent for a future President to go even further. Even if it is a President of their own party, they ought to pay attention and block such power grabs -- because the next time it could be the guy in the other party...
In response to:

Is the IRS Lying?

Pete from CA Wrote: Jun 25, 2014 2:22 PM
This is obviously a cover-up. If the White House was not involved, clearly "surrogates" in the form of 10 or 12 Senate Democrats were encouraging the IRS to take specific actions against the freedom of speech by conservative/tea party organizations. The whole idea that political funding is somehow dirty and requires special tracking and monitoring -- by the government -- is ludicrous. The motivations for creating all the folderol over reporting and limiting campaign donations may have had positive motivations, but the resulting regulations (McCain-Finegold and subsequent bills, along with similar action in many states) has put a damper on free speech. As a previous Speaker of the Assembly in California pointed out, "Money is the mothers-milk of politics." Yes, there is the potential for corruption. Yes, certain very wealthy individuals may provide greater influence due to their wealth. But the current system has set up a variety of unhealthy situations (where opponents can find out the names of donees, then harass them when they exercise their freedom of speech -- in an effort to quell that speech. This is intolerable. All of the impediments to freedom of speech -- and to political donations -- should be removed, including the repeal of McCain-Finegold and all other federal, state, and local interference in the free exercise of political speech. Just like the idea that it is better for 10 criminals to go free to ensure that one innocent goes to jail, the danger of financial/political corruption is much less than the danger that elections end up being decided by "election regulatory commissions" or the IRS rather than by voters. As for the IRS, obviously there is a lot of corruption that won't be ferreted out until a Republican President/Attorney General appoints a special prosecutor. In the mean time, Congress should lift the "statute of limitations" on all malfeasance by IRS personnel. It should also cut the IRS budget by 20% (without removing any responsibilities) and in addition should cut IRS management salaries by 20% -- and rescind all bonus programs and freeze all salaries "in place", so that a "promoted" individual does not receive any change in compensation until such time that this political scandal is fully revealed and those involved are in jail.
Indeed it is. BUT, will the army actually fire on the citizens? Or, will they join with their fellow citizens against a power elite that grows more and more out of touch with individual American's wants and needs. The cynical power elite think they can "control us" but dollars to doughnuts, I'd bet that early targets would include the lame-stream media that only seems to parrot the Leftist talking points. Once there is no "press" then the power elite won't be able to make their speeches into the echo chamber.
Indeed it is. BUT, will the army actually fire on the citizens? Or, will they join with their fellow citizens against a power elite that grows more and more out of touch with individual American's wants and needs. The cynical power elite think they can "control us" but dollars to doughnuts, I'd bet that early targets would include the lame-stream media that only seems to parrot the Leftist talking points. Once there is no "press" then the power elite won't be able to make their speeches into the echo chamber.
I know that many members of the Tea Party already feel that the current administration does not have "the consent of the governed." That does not bode well for the future. (Rasmussen polls show a significant minority share this view.) There are dangers, and the arrogance of the left, using every "dirty trick" to retain power, may find itself at the wrong end of the "torches and pitchforks" that eventually come out when politicians completely lose touch with too many citizens. The progressives started disassembling the Constitution back in 1877 and have been moving faster and faster over the years. What's funny is that the radical left, in their youth, thought "The Revolution" was just around the corner and they made several attempts to set off a violent overthrow of the government (by bombing and other terrorist acts). Now, the radical left is "in charge" in the Congress (the Senate) and in the Administration. As they advance their unwanted and undesirable plans and policies, they may indeed get the revolution they sought after, but it won't be exactly what they anticipated. Or, the debts run up by their irresponsibility will bring the government and country "down" ... and end up resulting in massive chaos. Either way it doesn't look good to me.
In response to:

Poll-Tested Pee in a Cup

Pete from CA Wrote: Jun 22, 2014 3:08 PM
Blame the doctors for a nanny who crashed into pedestrians while under the influence of prescription drugs. Let's see... every such drug bottle has a warning: "Do not drive while using this drug...." The only reason to sue the Doctor and/or the medical practice (in this case, the huge Kaiser organization) is that a nanny doesn't have much money to pay a judgment and likely has minimum insurance coverage -- essentially limiting the collection to the fairly low insurance policy limit for the accident. Too bad the kids weren't run over by one of the state's high net worth folks. (The accident is a sad unfortunate ... it's the money grubbing that I object to.) Of course, raising the medical "malpractice" judgment limit will just raise health insurance premiums for all Californians ... and are likely to drive more doctors (faced with higher insurance costs for malpractice premiums) either into retirement or out of the state. One more reason I moved out of the Californian Utopia....
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