Thursday, December 31, 2009

Who is a Journalist?

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is so concerned about its internal security that it sent out investigators to the homes of two bloggers who spilled the beans about Transportation Security Agency (TSA) plans for the imposition of idiotic in-flight rules as a result of the Underwear Bomber incident. Fox News reports how the two bloggers were treated. DHS Subpoena's Two Journalists DHS/TSA alleges the two are not journalists and therefore do not deserve the same 1st Amendment protections afforded journalists. The Watchman did a little research and found a web site reporting on a recent court ruling that clearly establishes bloggers as journalist.

What is disconcerting about this episode is DHS/TSA's heavy handed approach and their concern about embarrassing leaks, when they should be figuring out how to win the war against terrorism. Interesting too, DHS, headed by a Democratic Obama appointee is aggressively seeking out to find who leaked the unclassified TSA document. Under the Bush administration SECRET CIA/FBI documents were leaked to the New York Times and published on page one! At the time Democrats heralded the disclosure as an act of patriotism.

However I digress. The importance of this incident will be played out in the courts again and hopefully the earlier ruling noted above will withstand judicial review. This is important for every citizen and especially every blogger. If the common everyday blogger who reports on activities of their community to international events is not viewed legally as a journalist, then the 1st Amendment is meaningless. Remember, several of our founding fathers were not journalist, yet they produced pamphlets, newsletters, handbills, and speeches that gave birth to our nation. Without a broad definition of who a journalist is or what journalism really is all about, then the State could begin regulating journalist content and only State approved content could be published. Note in the Fox News report the blogger's comments about how they felt intimidated and fearful.

The Watchman isn't advocating irresponsible reporting by bloggers and other communicators acting in a journalistic manner. However, bottom line is these individuals do deserve the same legal protections as other professional journalists. Stay tuned to how this story unfolds. It may raise a red flag on things to come.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Can He Do an About Face?

Its going to be tough for our Dear Leader, President Obama, to make an about face and become the terrorists worst nightmare since President Bush declared war on them eight years ago. Remember, Obama is suppose to be the Peace President and make nice with the world. Obama is suppose to end the unrighteous imprisonment of terrorists because they were misunderstood 'man made disasters'. He was suppose to sit down with the nutball prime minister running the daily affairs of Iran and over tea work out a consesus basis of spreading more of Americans wealth to tin horn dictators. His attorney general was to procute CIA integrators, not call them back into action to get dirt on the terrorists.

No the President is really going to have a real struggle to call Islamic terrorism what it is, terrorism, and then do something concrete to keep it from coming ashore into the American heartland. It is apparent he is truly struggling to find the right response and so far the best he can come up with is to blame Bush for an outdated system and its failure. Unfortunately that old song was last years hit and folks are tired of hearing it. Besides, that was then, this is now and he's the guy on the watch, like it or not. Man-up and fire some administration idiots starting with the Sectary of DHS.

However, since he never has worked as a business owner or chief executive, he's never had to fire anyone, so canning the DHS chief is not likely. The Watchman doesn't blame Homeland Security Chief Janet Napolitano for the attempted bombing, but does believe she is clueless about the reality of how seriously America's number one enemy, Islamo-Fascism, would dearly love to kill everyone of us just for the thrill of it. And if reports out of Yemen is even half true, then there are several hundred rabid jhidists just itching to kill an American. We don't need a delusional government hack running DHS, who plays PC games with peoples lives.

Too Obama is hampered by his Nobel Peace Prize. He just can't order up a barrage of cruise missiles to bomb Yemen terrorist training camps like Bill Clinton did. Also he's ham strung too by his recent foray into environmental, global warming, politics. If he bombs the hell out of Yemen and leaves behind all the nasty pollution, his supporters from Green Peace et. al. will go nuts.

We are entering into a very dangerous period. There are other evils out in the world watching Obama's first tepid responses to crisis, measuring the man, and taking careful note how and what he does. Russia is pushing for our nuclear defense system information. China is toying with our dollar while eyeing Taiwan across the Formosa Straights. North Korea continues to merrily work away at building its armed forces, testing missiles, and fine tuning its new nuclear toys. One miss-step by Dear Leader and anyone of these three evils, as well as potentially several others, will unleash their plots to bring darkness over the world.

Mr. President! About Face!

Monday, December 28, 2009

I Don't Know and I Don't Care

Recently a dear relative of mine ask me if I "had won over anyone with my conservative views"? I was not sure what to say, but felt that I had. A very liberal co-worker is slowly seeing the Marxist ways of Obama is going to ruin the American economy and demolish individual liberty, partly because I frequently point out Obama's policy positions are right out of Marx's Das Kapital. However, I cannot say hundreds have come around to my way of thinking due to my pithy comments or insightful writings. Upon reflection over the holidays and considering patriots of former centuries I have decided my answer should have been: I don't know and I don't care.

I do not know if I have won one soul to the right position that conservatism and capitalism seem to work very well in our country. That free enterprise is the backbone of our nation. That: "the government that governs best, governs least." (Ronald Regan). I do not know if anyone ever reads this blog or other items I have written. I do not know if people tune me out when I speak about the obvious march to implementation of Marxist policies or his hiring of Marxist personnel by BHO. I have not a clue if there is a single human soul ‘who once was lost but now is found’, have moved from being a passionate liberal-socialist to a passionate conservative because of anything that I have said or written. I just have no idea if any of my non-PC thoughts have affected my PC afflicted friends, neighbors, or fellow citizens.

But I don't care. I really do not care what the left thinks of my ideas or me. I am not going to be cowed by others who dismiss me as a cranky old man who is spouting off about how our country has gone to hell in a hand basket. Because I stand against BHO's policies and the Democrat's hell-bent charge into Marxist/Socialist economic policy. As a conservative, I have been labeled a racist (Jimmy Carter), a bigot (Sharpton / Jackson), a Nazi (Nancy Pelosi), and a slaver (Harry Reid) to name a few enlightened fellow citizens of the Marxist left. So I do not care if that is their (or others) opinion of my position.

Why? Because I know, I am right. As a student of history, I know of no nation that has embraced National Socialism and did well in the end. The left swoons over European socialism as a beacon of utopia. Yet, Europe is silently in its last years of greatness as the cradle of western civilization. Europe is experiencing irreversible falling replacement birth rate of native Europeans (think white, Christian/Jewish DNA Frenchman/woman) below 1.0 and a sky rocketing birthrate of non-native Europeans (think Arab, Muslim, immigrant-citizen Frenchman/woman). As a result, it will only be a matter of a generation before sweeping changes in the culture/values, governance, and basic economic underpinnings of European National Socialism is no more. Think - Paris as the new Bagdad or Kabul, complete with Shria Law. Easy socialism is at the root of their demise. Europe's conversion is inevitable and unstoppable.

Yet, there is still time in America. America stands alone as the last best hope for our world. America as it was born and founded upon the values of independent action by each individual with the liberty to see their dreams come true through their own effort. What BHO and the Democratic controlled congress are attempting to do is a wholesale cultural change of those values to a government dependence value. They are implementing sweeping changes in almost every aspect of our society to bring about complete dominance by the State, and under-cut independent thought and action. Creation of an European America with similar long-term results. Doubt me? Look at the news regarding how National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) grants have been used to "suggest" artist extol the virtues of BHO's administration (Is National Endowment for the Arts Pushing Obama Administration's Agenda) The Washington Examiner reports stimulus funds have gone to democratic districts by a 2 to 1 margin. Report: Democratic districts received nearly twice the amount of stimulus funds as GOP districts By: Mark Hemingway And as mentioned in the Watchman's last blog, the culture of governmental bribery is now so blatant it is called 'normal' by our leaders.

The true patriot does not change their stand by holding fingers to the wind and gauging whether or not the public approves of their message or their methods. They stand firm in thier convictions and assail what they see as evil. Some will respond that my delivery is what they object too. The Watchman is not here to tickle your ears and make you feel warm and fuzzy. He's here to cut through the blatant hypocrisy of the Marxist left and their soft bigotry of deception being foisted upon unthinking citizens leading to their own destruction.
The Watchman is back at home station after a trip to the Land of Oz. I've been working on a few things that I'll share once complete and edited.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Great Democratic Party Achievement

Yesterday the U.S. Senate approved to move the Senate's version of Obama-Reid-Pelosi Health Care Program to the next Senate procedure by a party line vote of 60 Democrats to 40 Republicans. This is a great achievement for the Democratic Party. However, how it was achieved now places America squarely in the same league as a corrupt banana republic. Democracy is now officially dead in America.

Why do I pronounce that? Because for both Speaker Pelosi and Senator Reid to get the necessary votes in the House of Representatives and Senate, bribes of unimaginable magnitude were offered and democratic party senators, engorged by their own lusts for power, accepted. The bribes offered immediately didn't individually benefit the taker, but their states. (However, as one Washington insider observed, these kinds of bribes have a way of ultimately enriching the individual.) So Nebraska will receive special Medicaid federal aid under the proposed Senate health care law, to the tune of $100 Million over 10 years. This is federal tax dollars from every American citizen going to Nebraska, while the rest of the nation has their Medicaid and Medicare program aid slashed. But that's not the only bribe offered and taken:

-- Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., won between $100 million and $300 million in additional federal aid for her state's Medicaid population. The deal, secured before she cast her critical vote in favor of bringing the health bill to the floor, was immediately dubbed the "Louisiana Purchase," though the actual Louisiana Purchase was considerably cheaper.
-- Vermont and Massachusetts got $1.2 billion in Medicaid money -- a change that was described as a correction to the current system which exempts those two states because they have robust health care systems. Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders also boasted Saturday that he requested and won an investment worth between $10 and $14 billion for community health centers.
-- Western states secured higher federal reimbursement rates for doctors and hospitals that serve Medicare patients. The provision covers the low-population "frontier" states and applies to Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah and Wyoming -- the latter two states are both represented by two Republicans, but ended up as beneficiaries anyway since they qualify. The legislative language defines frontier states as states where at least 50 percent of the counties have fewer than six people per square mile. Sen. Kent Conrad, D-N.D., chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, defended the "special deal," telling "Fox News Sunday" that those five states were getting an increase in reimbursements because they get the lowest amount in the country. "That doesn't offend me at all," he said. "It's in fact, fair."
-- Florida, New York and Pennsylvania -- where five of six senators are Democrats -- will have their seniors' Medicare Advantage benefits protected, even as the program sees massive cuts elsewhere.
-- Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., reportedly secured expanded Medicare coverage for victims of asbestos exposure in a mine in Libby, Mont.
-- Connecticut is receiving $100 million for a "health care facility" affiliated with an academic health center at a university that contains the state's only "public academic medical and dental school."
-- Nebraska's Nelson won permanent federal aid for his state's expanded Medicaid population, a benefit worth up to $100 million over 10 years. Other states get the federal aid for three years, but Nebraska's benefit is indefinite. His state also got an exemption for nonprofit insurance companies from a health insurance company tax. Many believe this was targeted at Mutual of Omaha, but senior Democratic aides would not confirm that.
Updated December 21, 2009 The Price Is Right? Payoffs for Senators Typical in Health Care Bill. Trish Turner of

Thus in a desperate attempt to garner the votes of Senators who had significant reservations about certain provisions of the proposed bill, the Senate Leader stooped to bribing gullible and power hungry senators. Almost as bad was the after comments regarding the blatant bribery:
But Senate Democrats said the payoffs are nothing unusual, and in fact typical.

"People fight for their own states. That's the nature of a democracy," Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., said on "Fox News Sunday," defending Nelson against withering attacks from the GOP.

"This is just part of the normal legislative process," said Jim Manley, spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid
Updated December 21, 2009 The Price Is Right? Payoffs for Senators Typical in Health Care Bill. Trish Turner of

No Senator Klobuchar, bribes of this magnitude is the nature of a corrupt, tyrannical, and evil government. Congratulations Democrats, you've managed to kill off democracy. Let's pray Americans will resurrect it on November 2, 2010.

[Note The Watchman is traveling so posts will be irregular at best. But he'll still be working on future posts regarding Health Care and other significant events.]

Friday, December 11, 2009

Posting Bounties

The left has started something they may greatly regret. A group called the "Velvet Revolution" (VR) has posted a $200K bounty on Tom Donohue, CEO of the National Chamber of Commerce. (Chamber Danger)

Seems as if VR doesn't take kindly to the chamber's efforts to stand up to our Dear Leader's, President Obama, plan to socialize our health care system. The VR placed an ad to pay $200K to anyone providing dirt on Mr. Donohue that would lead to his arrest and conviction of some terrible crime. Problem is the fellow at VR is himself a convicted felon! Apparently, Mr. Brett Kimberlin has convictions for drug related offenses as well as domestic terrorism as the "Speedway Bomber". He severed 12 years of a 50 year sentence. Thus from his apparent unrepentant past, he is now creating an environment where Donohue has to hire additional security and look over his shoulder at every turn.

The worst aspect of this is two can play the game. What would stop someone from placing a $500K bounty on say, Rob Emanuel, White House Chief of Staff for any kind of embarassing dirt. Which leads me to the greater point: How soon will we see the rise of left/right wing death squads so famously used in South America when two sides can't live in peace. Readers might scoff at such an idea, but given the level of intensity, the high stakes games being played, and now this tactic, its just a short ride down the slippery slope to your run of the mill banana republic response to hated adversaries.

I hope wiser minds prevail at VR, but somehow I don't think that will happen. Hopefully, others on both sides don't take the bait to do likewise creating yet even more division in a badly divided nation.


The Watchman apologizes for his neglect of bringing news and opinion recently. He's been overwhelmed at work and home with projects and got-to-dos that he let slip this important aspect. He'll get back to the program and keep raising the Red Flag.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

We Can Never Say 'Thank You' Enough

At the 11th hour in the 11th month in 1918 the First World War stopped. Silence was heard all across the front lines as the guns were finally unloaded and put away. From that day forward our nation has honored their military service men and women. Those WWI veterans and the millions of others who followed in the painful last half of the 20th century are due our ever lasting gratitude. We can never say "Thank you" enough to our veterans.

Veterans come in all ways and each has their own story to tell. Some braved the beaches of Normandy, endured the hell of Bataan, fired their last ammo at Chosin Reservoir, repelled the enemy at Khe Sanh, or diffused IEDs along some forlorn road in Iraq. Other veterans never fired a weapon against an enemy or suffered the terror of an enemy artillery shelling. They fixed trucks, ran bulldozers, cooked meals and kept the paperwork flowing. Yet they too, served to protect our nation from the threat of enemies.

What many may not fully understand, if they haven't been in the military, is the act of service, during war or peace, begins with a signature on a line, enlisting or commissioning, one's self to the whims and ways of the political world. The service member pledges their life in the service of their country. Our military is subject to the variations of world powers, who may set in motion terrible wars and bloody battle fields. They in effect, roll the dice, and hope during their tour, they will not be asked to face down an enemy in bloody combat. They are the last ones to hope for war. Yet, they train to be ready. During peacetime the training is intense and as realistic as can possibly be. From responding to a submarine's general quarters klaxon, practicing beach landings, building fortifications, to performing night carrier landings our military trains hard to be ready should peace fail.

All of our uniformed military work days, nights, holidays, through every kind of weather and overcome every possible challenge. They miss kids being born, a child's first steps or their first words. They move families around the country at the printing of orders, to places they might not have chosen for themselves. It is, "Yes, Sir!" and off they go. They might be sipping a beer on Saturday night and get an alert call, gather their gear and report to their units not knowing if it is the real thing or just another training drill.

I have an unique aspect of my service in the Army. My father was a Viet Nam era vet as I am. Neither of us saw combat or stepped foot in 'Nam'. But we both were deeply affected by it. He, as a company First Sargent assigned to a rear detachment, at the start of the big war build up in 68. I as new Butter Bar (2nd Lieutenant), sworn in one month before the official end of the war in 75. He saw the first Soldiers coming home from Nam, busted spirits, drugged up, and no pride. I found an Army that was shell shocked and demoralized from being "beat", as well as, dangerously underfunded,untrained,and unready. The term PTDS hadn't been invented yet. Thinking back, many of my senior officers and NCOs obviously had the symptoms.

Today, a lady asked me if I was a veteran. I told her yes I was. I said that I hadn't given as much as some, but did as much as I was able. I think many of us veterans feel that way. Some gave their last full measure of life, some, like my self, gave all I could give that I was asked. She thanked me for my service. It felt good. It was then I realized we can never say thank you enough to the men and women who serve in our armed forces. They have given us our very freedoms and protect us from our enemies. Their gift is truly immeasurable, beyond words, or expression. The best we can do is honor them always with the deepest respect they richly deserve.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Why We Should Care

A friend of mine ask, "Why should we care what Obama represents? We're so far down the pecking order we wouldn't feel the impact if Obama was a Marxist or Methodist. We're taxed by all sides so how can it be much worse if Obama wants to redistribute the wealth." I was shocked by my friend's attitude, but it caused me to wonder, why should we care?

First in my mind there is no doubt Barack H. Obama is a Marxist. At least some sort of Marxist, maybe a soci-marxist, a First or Second Phase Socialist, or perhaps an neo-Marxist with narcissistic delusions of grandeur, but he is definitely NOT a capitalist. He is NOT a Free-Marketeer either. This much we know is that he stands firmly with the strong central economic planning and control crowd. Nearly everyone agrees with this assessment.

But why should we care? Most readers I venture are lost deep into their own personal struggle for survival in the rough and tumble world of work, family, and community. We are barely able to drag ourselves out of bed each day to slave for some ungrateful employer and then slug home to a dirty house, screaming kids, and mac-n-cheese dinner. And that is if we're not one of the unlucky 10% unemployed. We have barely enough energy to take on fixing the screen door, washing dishes, and bathing the kids at night so why should we care what the central economic underpinnings of President Obama are?

Depending on future outcomes, of which we can have no idea, it may mean nothing. Or Obama's economic belief system could mean a whole lot to each American citizen. A young Captain during WWII wrote to a friend on the northern front. He was a solid officer and award winning Solider in the service of his country. He expressed to his friend a confidence that he wasn't sure of the leader's ability to be successful in winning the war. One sentence. One set of words, freely written, to express an opinion led the loyal and devoted Captain into the Soviet Gulag, for 12 years. Alexandra Solzhenitsyn chronicled the inhumane treatment of ordinary "Comrades", who didn't care what Lenin or Stalin's economic value system represented.

How are the two important, economic belief and suppression of freedom? The one leads to the other. If nothing else can be learned from Soviet history, it is the fact, hard, cruel, fact that Lenin and Stalin's economic belief value system (Marxism-Communism) led to the most horrific of mass exterminations (saving for Hitler's own economic belief outcomes) in history. It was the Marxist belief system of redistribution of wealth and Communist system of absolute necessity for centralized control of all economic, industrial, and business that led to the extreme abuses of human rights and the murder, yes, murder of millions of innocent Russian citizens.

This is why it is important to understand, to know, what our leader's political, economic, and moral value system is built upon. Obama spent a significant amount of his life in the learning shadows of people who were and are ultra socialist if not card carrying Marxists. It was plain in his own autobiography of his association with people who encouraged, espoused, and attempted to live out Marxist ideology. Even the appointment of his "Czars" are tinted with social-Marxism in one form or another.

The Red Flag Warning is out friends. Waving hard for all to see. There is a danger in our land, and many, like my friend, either don't see it in their ignorance, or choose to ignore it out of a desire to just-go-along, to-get-along. No greater mistake can we make as a nation to travel down this path. To do so invites a tyranny eclipsing history beyond belief. I care. Do you?

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Marxist Strategy 101

[Note: The Watchman has been consumed with laying wood flooring in his house so posting has been spotty. However,while doing so I've been listening to the ever alarming news of President Obama's faltering presidency coming out of Washington.]

Being a student of history and having done a little research into how Marxists work their wonders of subjugating their opponents, it appears Dear Leader's subordinates (some might say sycophants) are following classic Marxist strategy in their recent efforts to suppress their enemies. So lets explore this strategy, its consequences, and fighting tyranny.

I am fond of ending my comments on news web sites with the following blurb, admittedly of my own origin: "If they come for one, they will come for us all." My premise is built upon historical evidence that tyrants bent on consolidating their hold on power will first focus on one enemy at a time, but then inevitably will come after all in their insatiable quest for absolute power. Marxist are particularly prone to this syndrome. The first Dear Leader, Comrade Lenin, tore apart one media outlet after another in his quest to silence opposition to his scheme of forcing Russia into Marxistland. He was ruthless in the effort, not only destroying printing presses, but killing off the printers as well. He took out the weaker ones first,but grew bolder as time went on until only his approved media organ, Pravda, was left standing in the rubble of free speech, with Russian blood flowing as rivers.

Lenin, and later Stalin, didn't stop with just silencing the obvious anti-Bolshevik faction of Russian political/governmental reform. Eventually they attacked even those who were officially part of the "Communist Party", groups who aided in the rise of communism, supported every new communist program regardless of how outlandish it was. (By the way, the same tactics were used in China in the late 40s and 50s. Millions died.) Thus only those organs that could some how meet the test of unwavering loyalty and proclaim abject fealty to the tyrant could exist. The process is painfully similar in every dictatorship from Cesar to Chavez.

Come now to 2009. A stealth Marxist bent political leader rises as a phoenix out of the broken world of social-communism to actually become the MOST POWERFUL MAN on earth and what does he begin to do? Attack and control. Attack any person or media organ that dares to stand in opposition to Barack Hussein Obama. Control the message to create favorable conditions for Dear Leader. The Administration's press secretary bragged on a TV Sunday talk show (an Obama approved talk show) how they controlled the media during the election to get their message out.

Look at the progression of their attacks: In the early part of his administration attack staff went out and attempted to connect his enemies (conservatives and Republicans) to Rush Limbaugh. The attempt was to link the Republican Party to their defined wild and ultra right wack job, Rush Limbaugh. The fawning press, followed along with the tactic, lapping it up as juicy mud to sling around on their news shows or opinion pages. Then, with the public beginning to question His Holiness' health care plan, the attack dogs when out and crapped on decent Americans who were attempting to exercise Amendment Number One, calling them Nazis, mobs, and unpatriotic. These Americans became 'Enemies of the New Way'. Later when the health care insurance companies dared to inform their clients the impact of Obamacare on Medicare, again the attack dogs slammed those companies, even sicing the Justice Department on them.

Lately,the Fox News Network has come into the cross-hairs of the Obama administration. Interesting they fell back to one of their earlier tactics of tying evil "Republicans" with Fox News, accusing the network of not only in bed with the Republicans, but actually co-joining in their effort to produce a wicked, dastardly, opposition effort against the Anointed One, Lord Obama. For three weeks Administration lackeys have trotted out in front of the press to accuse Fox News of some terrible thing, like criticizing Obama for dithering for two months on General McCrystal's request for more troop in Afghanistan. However in this instance, they may have gone a "Network too far".

This evening, it was reported the Obama administration press executives decided to limit Fox News' access to a scheduled news pool interview with the Executive Pay Czar. Only 4 other news networks were to be granted access, since in their opinion, Fox News wasn't really a "news" network. But in an act of solidarity, the 4 other networks told the administration if Fox wasn't in on the news pool, then they would decline the opportunity to interview the Pay Czar.

And thus, maybe, just maybe, the other networks are seeing the light. If Marxist Obama and his minions come after one network, they will eventually come after all networks. Maybe they saw after Fox News falls, one night Charles Gibson dares to negatively report on Barack's dancing with the stars and finds himself and the ABC Network the next target, the next enemy, the next network to go under.

And how do you stop tyranny? ALL must go after The One.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

The Man Who Brought Us Peace in Ten Days

This week's stunning announcement by the Nobel Prize Committee (NPC) they were awarding President Obama the Peace Prize left the Watchman as well as a few hundred million people totally baffled. What on earth were the members of the NPC thinking. Or maybe not. The announcement spoke glowingly of BHO's intent and desire to bring the world to peace. They listed his pronouncements as evidence of his yearning for a peaceful world where we all can live in harmony. Too, they mentioned his diplomatic skills that differed so much from the previous White House Tenant. But all the fancy words, still beg the question: What did Obama do, really, actually do to win this most covenanted award for leadership?

A little known factoid on this issue, is even more stunning than the announcement itself. The nominations for the Nobel Prizes were closed on February 1, 2009. In other words, in ten days as the leader of the most powerful nation in the world, the NPC selected Obama as the winner of the Peace Prize. TEN days! Other than winning elections, and being a 'ACORN Community Organizer', what has this man ever accomplished? Really? It appears the Norwegians must have been smoking something more than peat in their pipe to come up with this one. And who nominated Barack? That would be a great question to ask the NPC. So in just his first ten days as President, BHO, somehow by his messiah like abilities brought us to such a tremendous sense of peace he was awarded the Peace Prize. Let's hope Obama can actually bring peace to this wounded and pain racked war sometime in the next 1,450 days, or the Norwegians may yet rue their hasty decision.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

The Dilution Factor

The Watchman believes we're beginning to see the slow unraveling of President Obama. He has sucessfully diluted the power of the president and our enemies can smell weakness. That can be dangerous for all of us. He has proclaimed from the roof tops that he as done so much, but the outcomes don't match the rhetoric. This week he staked the prestige of the most powerful office in the world on gaining a sports extravaganza for Chicago, but came up way sort, loosing the bid for the 2016 Olympics in the first round. He is stumbling badly with His health care initiative. He is fighting off inquiries of many of His czars who don't appear to have been very well vetted. The unemployment rate the He said wouldn't go above 8.0 is now 9.8%. He now faces off with Iran, who seems to thrive on thumbing their nose at democratic presidents (remember Jimma Carter?).

He seems to be a great idea guy, but looses interest and runs off to the next big idea. While this is good if one is venture-capitalist in business, but disastrous if you are the leader of the free world. Little by little He's going to dilute what little is left of His personal "charm" as the constant campaigning He launches into at the drop of a hat. Then is when we'll start to see the real Obama. And it won't be pretty.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Week Day Vegetarians

The Watchman and his lovely bride are experimenting with a new approach to cutting our food bill. I recall my folks and grandparents talking about how during the Great Depression (no they weren't talking about the reign of Jimma Carter, worst president of the USA in history) they only had meat on special occasions and Sundays. So we did a little research and sure enough the average meat intake into American homes has risen steadily over the years until now it is consider the focus of what a meal is built around. We found our first consideration each night, "Hey, Honey what do you want to eat with our chicken tonight" led to a food bill based on chicken, beef, pork, and something they call weenies, which might be almost any kind of meat mixed together. With the price of meat approaching that of precious metals, almost 50% of our food bill was on meat products.

So in an experiment we've gone vegetarian on weekdays, saving those steaks, chops, ribs, roasts, and chicken parts for the weekends. A surprising side effect is the meat tasting more flavorful and we seem to eat less of it. Also to cook the flesh, required more energy than munching on a hearty bowl of oatmeal. So now we start our meal prep with, "Hey Honey what goes with pickled beets and tomatoes?"

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Olympian

We've had Obama the god. Obama the gifted orator. Obama the towering socialist. Now we have Obama the Olympian. We've got Iran building nukes. Russia rebuilding it's power base. The war in Afghanistan and Iraq is falling apart. Pakistan near civil war with nukes. Unemployment driving steadily upward. Health care reform is stalled and now appears to be a miss-mash of glued together deals struck in the House cloak room. 200 citizens died in a tidal wave in American Samoa. And the Obama team heads for Denmark to champion his home town, Chicago, for the 2016 Olympic games. (Cost is estimated at $50 Million for this junket. Is the Chicago Olympic committee reimbursing the government for this "assistance"?) What next? A sales trip to Syria representing Disney?

But all that aside, the question is what will happen should the International Olympic Ccommittee not select the Obama led Chicago bid? Answer: it will further erode the power and prestige of the Office of the Presidency and embolden our enemies. Still, the 'fix' might be in with the IOC (check ACORN fund transfers, eh?)and he knows they will get the nod. Or if the bid fails he can blame Bush for creating hatred against America. Might be personally for him a win-win.

While Obama seems to be all to all, he doesn't seem to understand he is to be Presidential, not Billy Mays.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Busy with Year-End Spending

If you are a regular reader of Red Flag Days it is apparent I've been negligent to update the blog with my latest thoughts, impressions, and generally wild radical rants of current events. That's because at work, as a U.S. Federal Employee, I am duty bound to spend every last possible dollar in our organization's budget by 1 October so we can claim to need even more mountains of taxpayer funds for next year. And indeed, I can report to you we've been able to not only meet the expectation of spending all our allocated funds, but we've been successful in 'robbing' from other directorates as well. However, I want to assure you we've spent these funds on true environmental bona-fide needs. Example: To meet an IT Command requirement of upgrading computers to enable use of Vista, of which we have no choice, we initiated a purchase of new Vista compliant computers/printers to replace outdated ones. Now we can create new rules, regulations, and program requirements without delay. I did reject a proposal for purchase of a fish shocker, $9,845.95, our biologist claimed was needed to inventory fish in installation rivers. The kicker? We don't have rivers on our installation. In fact, with less than 4 inches of rain/snow per year we usually have dry creek beds!

So stand by friends, things will be back to normal in a few days.....I feel a rant coming on about children's worship songs to Dear Leader, "Barack Hussein"

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Weasel Words

The Federal Reserve Chairman, this week said: "...the recession is very likely over." He maybe very likely right, but equally, he may be terribly wrong. When our leaders use weasel words to shade reality it undermines the people's confidence. to react. Personally, I wouldn't run out and bet the farm on the end of this recession. Mark Lieberman, a Fox News Business analyst, pointed out five weaknesses of the Chairman's prognoses:
1) One shot incentives - i.e. Cash for Clunkers makes it appear a lot of activity in the industrial sector will result because of this "demand". However, industrial planners have long learned not to make too big of an adjustment in production in the face of artificial created demand. Result: No new jobs.
2) Skewed numbers in official reports - Lieberman indicates many official Dept. of Labor reports contain data buried in the details that few understand how it impacts the overall report. Statistics can look good, but contain hidden bad news. Most of us don't have the time to delve into the details and depend on a sound-bite from leaders to make us feel good or bad depending on the desired out come. He points out that sales data is especially subject to being misread:
A. Gas sales - heralded as a sign that consumers were once again traveling. No gasoline prices rose by the same percentage as the sales figures.
B. Retail sales - Hurrah! Consumers are back in the stores. No - back to school tax holidays drove sales for a temporary rise in sales.
C. Restaurant sales - Increased sales of not-at-home food consumption rose 0.1% last month. But it is the same situation as gas sales. Food prices rose the same amount.

3) Unemployment - At 9.7% - Still 15+ million can't find work. The rate doesn't take into account those who's unemployment has run out and quit looking for work. Might we add the unemployment rate plus the welfare application rate?
4) Consumer credit - Consumers decreased credit card purchases by 5.2% and savings has risen 5%. The recession can't end until consumers start spending, creating the demand for goods and services.
5) First Time Home Buyers - Again due to special one time incentives, an artificial blip of increased home sales occurred, making it appear the housing market is back on the upswing. Once the incentive money is gone, so will the home sales. Also Lieberman pointed out that who gains in home sales? Not many in the economy, especially if it is a "used" home. It may be good for home values, but will not bring back jobs as in previous years.

So the lesson learned here is to carefully listen to what is not said and don't be jumping for joy too soon. We all hope the economy rebounds soon, but not under false pretenses, please.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Why Government Can't Run Health Care: Or anything else for that matter!

The Watchman has not had a good day. In fact it was a disaster from the start, didn't get any better and resulted in the downing of a double martini upon arriving home. What, you may ask, was the cause of such a horrific day? Government operating at its very finest. Yes indeed your government, the one you all pay boatloads of taxes to, managed to enter into the twilight zone and create the proverbial do-loop. Let me explain.

For a number of years, Fort Carson's environmental group has used the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to aid in our development of management plans and perform necessary environmental impact studies and assessments under the National Environmental Protection Act. This work was done by recognized agency experts, USFWS employees who are federal government workers. Earlier this year it was discovered our former director had improperly developed an inter agency agreement to use the USFWS. In other words he'd by-passed the 20 person approval chain. In response our director was relieved of duty and then the hassle began that has turned into a nightmare. What was simple before, became a miss-mash of many cooks in the kitchen, with lawyers arguing over the jots and tittles of law, financial types arguing about the color of money (which I will not explain in this blog), and what template should be used for the blessed agreement.

Now here is the kicker: Our division staff prepared a draft agreement that didn't pass muster with the gnomes of higher HQ. So we re-did it in their desired template. Basically rearranged paragraphs and changed a few adjectives. This new draft was approved by the higher beings at HQ and we were told to have our commander sign it. That we did, and quickly too as time was running out. Remember, in most state and federal governments if you don't spend money given to you, then it is 'lost' for use the day after the end of the year. And we're not talking about parking meter change here either! Now get this: We send the SIGNED agreement by both our commander and the USFWS to higher HQ, who then shreds it apart with at least 20 new issues or questions! This is death by a thousand cuts and our staff is ready to throw in the towel. We are now redoing and justifying the previous justifications to satisfy someone in higher HQ who apparently doesn't want this thing to go through.

We would have given up a month ago, except for the 13 highly skilled and award winning USFWS staff who have worked in partnership with us for well over 10 years. To be treated this way and face the threat of unemployment in the middle of a recession is a travesty. Not only that, but without their support, our existing staff can not do the work these experts do and we may in the end subject the Army to fines and harsh public opinion for violating the environmental laws.

The Watchman tells this story to illustrate the governments total incompetence at running such complex activities. If they can't get it straight for saving the wildlife, how can we expect the government to run a mega trillion health care program? How can we have confidence that there won't be some glitch in the process that will totally screw up the system to the point where not only are people out of work, but people die. The Cash for Clunkers still haven't paid dealerships for price reductions due to bureaucratic bungling. Again, ask your self, based on your experience with government, do you really, really, believe the government can be trusted to run the single most important aspect of you and your family's life? Really?

Thomas Pain wrote: "That which governs best, governs least." His sentiment needs to be followed to day, as it doesn't appear our government can run much of anything well.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Personal Invectives - Part II

Hardly had the electronic ink dried on the Watchman's blog of September 10, when indeed a group of black publishers, National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) shouted from the roof tops "Racism" over Congressman Joe Wilson's calling President Obama a liar in the congress.(Black Publishers Cry Racism...) The direct quote of Wilson's is: "You lie." Nothing more was said by Wilson. No other pejorative was used in conjunction with the statement. He immediately apologized to the President. In the end, where is the "racism" claimed by the NNPA? Do they possess some supernatural god like power to access the intent of a man's heart? I think not. It appears the NNPA and others like them, see the bogeyman of racism at every turn and in every shadow. A sad commentary on the progress of race relations, don't you think?

Where was their out rage when during the presidential election campaign, Senator Reid and other democratic leaders charged candidate Obama with lying? Is the invective of racism only to be applied when convenient or invoked against individuals from the other party? Was it racism when most of the leaders within the democratic party called President Bush a "liar" over Iraq issues? Crying racism in the Wilson case demonstrates the inconsistency and resulting loss of power the word holds. Bull Conner and George Wallace standing in the doorway of southern schools to prevent entry of black children is racism. A no-name congressman embarrassingly loosing control of his emotions in congress saying two words is not.

The other sad part of the Wilson outburst is the lack of analysis into his charge by the main-line media. The puffed up indignation by Congressional leaders over Wilson's breech of protocol may be a dodge to deflect consideration that our President was less than truthful in handling the facts of the health care issue. has a good review of the issue. Of the five items the President addressed, he was pretty loose with the facts on 4 of them. So is he only 25% truthful? Credibility on this topic is not his strong suite.

The NNPA in response will boycott South Carolina to punish Wilson. Huh? Yes, they plan on canceling their annual convention there to demonstrate opposition to South Carolina's continued use of the confederate flag as a state symbol. Only problem is the impact of their decision actually punishes the very people they represent, hardworking black and white poor who cook and serve in restaurants, do hotel laundry, work in the convention centers, or the small black business owner who just lost a catering contract.

Again, the over use of personal invective so easily undermines right thinking and results in innocent people being harmed. The knee jerk reaction by the NNPA demonstrates how thin skinned our fellow countrymen really are and how easy it is to use an invective to perpetuate negative political agendas. As the Watchman sees these things play out, he fears a return of old prejudices that keep us slightly ahead of savage barbarity.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Easy Use of the Personal Invective

Back on July 28th the Watchman wrote a blog on the intemperate charge "racism" and how such over use dilutes the terrible meaning of the word. The same needs to be said for calling people "liars". It wasn't effective against President Bush when used by the liberal left and I don't believe it should have been spoken of President Obama during last nights address on health care to a joint session of Congress. The comment came from Rep. Joe Wilson (R) South Carolina, who in his agitated state of emotion uttered the invective loud enough that all in the chamber could hear it.

No, that was not the way Americans should treat their president when in a public setting. Even if it is believed the President purposely was miss-stating or was being misleading on the issue of coverage of illegal aliens, conservatives and moderates need to remain in control of their emotions. In the book, Letter of Lincoln, it is clear President Lincoln was subject to daily doses of personal invectives against himself, his cabinet, his family, and closest friends. Yet, he remained a steadfast gentleman who spoke or wrote in such a graceful manner that many of his enemies were totally disarmed. He used humor and calm logic to dissuade his detractors, and only occasionally leaned on someone with his sharp wit and knack for a subtle put-down. Even then he frequently would later write or speak an apology to that individual.

The tendency today is to let loose with all kinds of personal invectives in an attempt to demean and derail the opportunity of real discussion. Its easy use of personal invectives that render their use meaningless when it might really count. Hyping up issues with words like liar and racist reduces their impact and tends to turn people off when heard too much. And doing so in an official settings such as in congress or in a court room is beyond the bounds of civility.

Congressman Wilson, immediately recognized his error, apologized, and the President accepted. That is a Biblical approach to resolving the issue. Now lets move on to discussion of the substance of these issues in a likewise civil manner. Then maybe we could get somewhere with resolving the impasse.

ACORN - New Style of Community Organizing

Back in the late 1800's it use to be a town grew from a wild and lawless collection of misfits into a city of citizens devoted to organizing a community based on virtue and solid moral values. Then community organizing meant building a church, a school, a public library, or a medical clinic. It meant the establishment of law and order, adherence to a code of citizen safety and dedication to civic duty.

Yet today, the single largest community organizing entity, ACORN, was discovered to be engaged in a organizing effort that would have promoted prostitution, sex enslavement of under-aged illegal women, and encouraged tax evasion. The leaders claim this was just an aberration, yet in several other instances through out the past campaign ACORN was found to have violated numerous election registration laws and is under DOJ investigation. The State of Louisiana is investigating the organization's founders and leaders for the disappearance of millions of dollars of charitable contributions as well as funds provided from taxpayers.

So where there is smoke, most likely there is fire. The kicker in all this is the proposal for ACORN to conduct the U.S. Census on behalf of the Department of Labor/Commerce. Every concerned citizen should contact their congressional delegation and demand ACORN have no part in the census collection. They are a community organizing agency that have disgraced the term and not deserving of this responsibility.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Can We Afford It Right Now?

As the Watchman listened to the President's speech on health care reform in an attempt to sway the congress to see it his way, I couldn't help but refer to my own situation regarding my beat-up old 98 Jeep. The President made a reasoned call for buying into a new system as the old was sorely out of condition and costing huge sums of money to continue. He promised the cost would be less than $90 Billion dollars over the next 8 years and would not "add one dime to the Federal deficit". One commentator mentioned the President may wish he hadn't said those words, referencing Bush 41's famous "Read my lips: No new taxes." line that killed him in his reelection attempt. Almost all agree, the President's math is flaky and who is he kidding that his program won't add to the deficit. However, I digress from the Jeep issue.

Here is the analogy: My old 98 Jeep has 137,658 miles on it. It runs okay, but I sense its age and at 53 mph a slight shimmy develops that is a bit disconcerting until it disappears at 64mph. The windshield is pitted. It has a deer dent on the left passenger door. The tires are showing signs of wear and the rear differential now drips, leaving a HOA unapproved grease spot on my driveway. Continued operational costs only continue to climb as it ages. By every account, this old system needs to be reformed, junked out in the parlance of used car sales. I know this fact and I know I could correct the problem by playing let's make a deal at the local new car dealership. The question is can I afford to do so now?

Our 'get it now' society demands full coverage and complete error free operation. And we like our stuff all shiny and new. We don't like rusty deer dents in our cars. Thus we look for a 'reformed' system at our earliest convenience. But can I afford to purchase a new Jeep now? Already my own personal budget is nearly maxed out. Unlike our Federal government at least I have a positive net worth, but still it is so slim that one false move could plunge our household finances down the tubes into bankruptcy. So do I take the risk to add on more debt load to an already heavy loaded system? I think not. Instead the wiser or more prudent move is to shore up those components that make the vehicle run safely, while I endeavor to reduce overall debt load, and one day, two or three years down the road, take on buying a newer vehicle.

Why can not our government do likewise and ask: Can we afford this level of health care reform right now? The President is fond of telling us he took over a government that was 1 Trillion in debt, yet in less than 200 days through his party's control of congress he has quadrupled this years debt and it is projected these debts will multiply to 12 to 15 Trillion over the next 10 years! Again, as badly as reform is needed, is the reform he is proposing affordable right now? I think not. So wouldn't it be more prudent to invoke reforms that could make the system better without breaking the bank? How about tort reform? Savings estimated at $38 Billion per year! Reducing waste and fraud with the existing systems? Saving over $200 Billion per year NOW! How about allowing true insurance competition through inter-state purchases policies? Driving down premiums by %20 to 30%. How about certifying drug importation from other nations? Saving close to $300 million in drug costs. These are just a few of the things that could be done NOW and are very affordable. However they are not being proposed by the Democrats. Why?

The Watchman's fear is enough of the 'get it now crowd' will ban together and shove through something that will jeopardize the entire US economic system's stability. When the nexus of insolvency, medicare and social security, is over-topped by some form of government health care system it will so undermine the foundations of our economy we will stagger under the load much as the old Soviet Union. The President proposes to buy today what we can't afford, in the hopes that we can afford it tomorrow, when most likely we'll be unable pay the loan? That is the sales pitch we heard tonight. Cheap credit along with a free lunch. We'd be wise to consider a more prudent approach.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

No One Should Die

A comment written on Face Book caught my attention.
"No one should die because they cannot afford health care, and no one should go broke because they get sick. If you agree, please post this as your status for the rest of the day."

On general principles I agree with the thought. People shouldn't be dying because of cost and neither should they go broke over health care in our 21st century North American society of obscene materialism. Although I suspect the frequency of both end results occur less than is generally thought. Also hospitals are pretty user friendly in setting up payment systems for folks who truly have no other way to pay.

However, universal health care isn't really that easy. From another paradigm I disagree with the comment as it leads to outcomes and consequences we might not desire nor be able to prevent once such a concept is brought about in society. The comment basically enshrines health care as a "right". Again, a seemingly beneficial aspect, but fraught with all kinds of issues. Lets explore a few of them:
How? How is the right implemented or ensured? To guarantee this right some one has to set up a system and it has to be paid for. The free-market system can do so by transferring the cost for those who can't pay over to those who can through their insurance premiums. For the most part this is what is happening now, but not in an organized manner. An illegal immigrant who can't get health insurance walks into an emergency room, gets treated (by law no one can be denied services), pays what they can and walks out the door. Other users who pay, eventually pick up the loss incurred by the hospital. One idea floated by a conservative is to create a "insurance pool" that all insurance companies pay into for coverage of the uninsured. Some health providers are already doing this like Walgreens. If we turn our health care over to a government run system, we who can pay will pay through our taxes AND our premiums.
Who? Who should be responsible for this right? The Bible teaches we are to be our brother's keeper, to protect the innocent (although another right guarantee kills the innocent), and to feed/care for the less fortunate. Are we, American citizens, responsible to care for someone who chooses to either abuse their health, illegally crosses the boarder, or make life style choices contrary to their physical health. One statistic generally accepted of the uninsured, is about 12 million folks earn greater than $74K a year and choose NOT to have insurance! Many in the 18 to 30 age group likewise opt out, especially if single, preferring to spend their money on other luxury items. So should the other 300 million of us foot the bill for others to have their cake and eat it too? Where does individual responsibility come into play in this right?
Why? Why this right? I've alluded to why in the last point, but in this point lets consider why this right over other possible rights? Try these: No one should die because they can't afford a house; No one should die because they can't afford a car; No one should go broke because they don't have a car; No one should go broke because they don't have cable TV; No one should go broke because their taxes are too high; Do you see where this is leading? If you grant one type of life style right then why not others. Our constitution mentions nothing about these kinds of 'rights' because the founders believed in setting general principles, and at that time, trusted the people to responsibly provide for themselves.
Reality? The sad fact of life: life is not fair. The comment implies all should be fair in the life we live. Life is not fair, in fact it can be down right brutal, especially if we make wrong choices. Most of the world lives in a day to day struggle for survival, where even the hope of health care is but an out of reach dream. If you live in North America, you have a number of safety nets that will help in times of need, but in the other 98% of the world that isn't the case.

These are but a few aspects of the implied 'right' to health care. There are consequences to enabling this as an universal right in our nation.
Loss of Freedom I: Others will choose for you. As suggested, a universal health care right paid for by the government, will ultimately involve loss of individual freedom to choose your health care direction. Oh, at first you'll be able to keep your current doctor, but as time goes along, inevitably for cost control purposes you'll be shunted off to another doctor. That doctor will be strictly limited as to health services you can choose from. He'll have a guidance table that will have age across the top and symptoms down the first column and where the two aspects intersect, that will be the health care provided. Too young or too old and your choices (freedom) will be limited by cost and availability. If you appeal, some faceless government gnome with a green shade cap will access your cost-effectiveness to receive treatment. There is no other way to reign in health costs but to ration and truncate care.
Loss of Freedom II: Health Nazis You laugh. But there are already legions of health nazis who are ready and able to police your life style choices and insert that info into your national health record. Doubt me? Think of this one aspect: Labor day pic-nic - You go to local grocery story, place on the checkout conveyor the following items: a bag of chips, 80% hamburger, 12 pack of hot dogs, sour cream dip, white buns, two cartons of cola, pack of marshmallows, graham crackers, and chocolate bars, and for dad a six-pack of beer. You then hand the clerk your "FOOD CLUB" card registered in your name! How hard do you think it would be for a nationalized health care system to require that data transferred into a "health risk factor system" and placed into your national health record. Then when you need a triple by-pass, all those data points will be summarized in a model formula and bingo: DENIAL OF TREATMENT! (And think on this: Will you go broke seeking private treatment in another country offering better care?)
Quality Vs Quantity: Mediocre care A national health care system will ultimately result in mediocre care. Take a look at Veteran's medical care. Overall it's pretty crappy. I should know I've used it for my military service related disability. Long lines, long waiting, examined by a PA rather than a Dr., weeks to get service or appointments, paperwork out the wazoo, and rude treatment by the sizable army of clerks. Remember, you get what you pay for. If it is free, then it cost you nothing and that's the kind of service you can expect. We will be herded in mass to local doctors who will be under-paid and over worked. If you need something routine, you'll probably get seen in a few weeks and handed your pills. But God forbid should you need any other kind of special treatment. You just might die before the system can meet your need. Also this will impact research and development of new techniques or medications. For what incentive will there be for those who work in this arena to go that extra mile if the rewards are not there? Mediocrity will become the standard mode of operation.

My last point goes to the end of the previous concept. Motivation. Why will individuals take care of themselves if they know they have no responsibility to do so? Where is the motive to move people to become doctors and surgeons if they know in the end they'll be part of giant industrial-medical system that dictates who, where, and how they will treat patients? The lessons of attempted socialism is rife with failure. One of the best examples on record is that of Jamestown of 1607. When the colony was first formed, it was done under the idea of 'communal' sharing of work as well as the benefits derived from that work. All would work together and all would share in the resulting bounty. Except human nature came into play. Those who were lazy, greedy, and/or thought of them selves as higher class didn't work. They expected to receive their share none-the-less. As the colony began to decline in output, people died from starvation. It was obvious the socialized effort wasn't working so Governor Dale canned the communal system, assigned 3 acre plots to colonists and told them "plant or die". Amazingly, the colony began to grow and thrive. Harsh? Indeed. Yet necessary for civilization to become civilized.

No, people shouldn't die or go broke from a lack of health care. But they do, and would continue to do so even if made a 'right' via a government system. That said, we need to exercise caution in assigning life-style rights for the consequences can be what we never intended, and may be far worse than what we have now.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

We Knew This was Coming

This will be quick as it is late and we just finished canning 52 pints of salsa. But the Watchman had to publish this observation: We knew this was coming. What am I talking about, you ask? Representative Rangle's claim that all the resistance to Obamacare is about racism. Check out the Fox News story, Rangle: "Prejudice a Factor"

When liberals, and especially Black liberals, can't win a debate on the grounds of fact and logic, they pull out the race card. Indeed, this was Obama's standard ploy when he would get into trouble during the election. And like the kid caught with his hand in the cookie jar, he'd look around all wide-eyed innocent like and say, "Who me?? No it was Bill who threw out the card."

The marxist-socialists have been totally floored by the reaction to Obamacare. Never in their wildest dreams after such a stunning election would they imagined citizens rising up in such loud opposition to the proposal for government run health care. They were so dreamily led along by the President's own euphoric rhetoric they totally miss-read their fellow Americans.

So they tried to win the argument by illogical, obfuscation, and misrepresentation of facts within the legislation (which they hadn't even read!!). When that didn't work they switched emphasis, it's about health insurance reform not health care. When that didn't work, they tried the do it for Teddy "The Gipper" Kennedy approach. When folks found that obscene to use the dead in such an overt political power grab, they now have fallen back on the tried and true guilt trip: We're all a bunch of white supremest after all. We now will let this monstrosity of a bill go into law because we all feel guilty of some kind of subconscious repressed prejuice that continues to burn in our white souls.

Well here is one person who isn't fooled by that old song. If you will take a few moments to read my blogs on the subject, as well as references to other articles on opposition to Obamacare, you will not find one mention of our President's race. I and those who oppose Obamacare do so, not because the color of his skin, but rather because the conduct of his character does not marry up with our values, of liberty and freedom from government intrusion into one of the most intimate aspects of human life, an individual's personal health.

Message to Congressman Rangle: Charlie, this is 2009 and we're in the post-racial period, so can that tired old tripe. We're looking for the real deal, and buddy, you ain't it.

Monday, August 31, 2009

H1N1 Flu Pandemic - Warning!

The Watchman has a special interest in public health, having worked in the field for a number years on the environmental side as well as having a degree in environment health science. The transmission of disease has always fascinated me as well as the detective work it takes to figure out how it happens. Nearly a year ago we heard about a serious form of influenza striking in the heart of Mexico. At the time public health officials down-played the threat, relegating the new virus to "no big deal" status. Later, officials took it off the watch list and most public health workers breathed a sigh of relief. Another flu pandemic bullet dodged. Or so they believed.

In July the World Health Organization (WHO) revised their call, and declared the H1N1 flu a true pandemic virus. Late last week WHO public health officials warned of a new twist to the virus, its attack on the human respiratory system directly, with deadly outcomes previously not anticipated. Severe H1N1 It appears this virus has particularly nasty habit of attacking children and young adults. If true to form, it will also kill the elderly either from the flu or complications such as pneumonia.

What is so eerie about this virus is its copy-cat sneaky invasion as the great Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918-1919. That virus acted very similar in its docile appearance early on, then after one or two waves around the world, it mutated into something truly terrify and very deadly. If you want to read about one of the darkest times in world health, take a look at John M. Barry's "The Great Influenza: The Epic Story of the Deadliest Plague in History". It is truly scary how the pandemic spread with hardly any official government action out of fears it might cause panic or worse negatively impact the war effort. But equally comforting is the realization that much of what we today call modern health care was born out of the American medical profession's response to the crisis, as well as, the heroic effort of micro-biologists to find answers in the budding American research labs.

The Watchman's advice is to review your personal medical situation, get vaccinated if in one of the high risk groups, and heed FEMA/CDC guides for preparation of prolonged disruption of normal public services. Think on this: most medium and small towns have maybe two or three employees who know to operate the drinking water system. If they become sick, who will ensure safe water continues to be pumped into the distribution system. Same for waste water, trash collection, food distribution and so on. In 1918, in some cities the dead were piled outside of homes and city workers carted the dead off to mass burial plots. The story of Philadelphia is particularly instructive on how a pandemic can spread and what consequences occur without proper and timely public health action.

I don't mean to cause panic or spread wild rumors, but an ounce of prevention is worth pounds of cure, and just maybe your life.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

What Ever Happened to Marcus Welby, MD

I wonder where and when Marcus Welby, MD disappeared from the scene? You might not remember Doctor Marcus Welby. He was a dedicated family practitioner who combined cool intellect with professional acumen and was a highly successful doctor. In fact he was so successful many others were encouraged likewise to become doctors. What Dr. Welby did for the medical profession is much like what the TV shows about CSI is doing for forensic science: motivate people to take on a challenging career.

Lest you think Marcus Welby, MD was a real doctor that he was not. He was a character played by Robert Young from 1969 to 1976 in the medical drama of the same name. The show was number one in its second year and stayed in the top 20 for most of its run. But what I find myself contemplating was how Dr. Welby seemed to focus on curing the sick, not fighting insurance companies and government regulation. Even more odd, was the show only had one nurse and the nurse also worked as the practices' secretary! Amazingly, there were never any shows about the ability of a patent's ability to pay the office visit or co-pay.

What happened between 1969 and 2009? Here are a few ideas:
** Malpractice Insurance went through the roof due to unrestrained lawsuit payouts. Thank you John 'medical trial lawyer' Edwards, et al.
** Employer paid insurance benefits to union workers - non-union companies forced to follow suit to acquire top workers. Also private policy insurance can't compete
** Demise of major medical policies replaced by full coverage policies. Increased risk equates to increased costs even if spread over millions of policy holders.
** HIPPA - Single biggest invasion of government in health care to date. How many privacy act statements have you signed? Each one has to be processed and recorded.
** US Food and Drug Agency - More governmental requirements and costs, some for safety to be sure, many inane rules that only increase costs.
** Doctor rationing by medical schools. Fewer doctors means greater pay for demand
** Insurance networks - Doctors either join the network or have no patients
** Demise of single owner - private hospitals and independent Doctors. Now all are part of big corporate operations and networks having huge overhead costs.
** Third Party Administrators - Part of overhead to control costs - Often the insurance company's gate keeper for coverage.
** 12+ million illegal immigrants going to emergency rooms for treatment.
** Over use of specialist - MRIs and Labs in every facility & if the ailment can't be fixed in the allotted 15 minutes with the PCP, its off to a specialist.
** Indulgent society I -Pills for everything - A no pain society.
** Indulgent society II - Triple Bacon Cheese Whoppers for lunch with a giant side of FF & gulp cup coke.
** Indulgent society III - we drive to the post box instead of walk.

Next time you go to the doctor, count the number of non-medically related folks you observe. Every one of them with the exception of the receptionist is there because of insurance claim processing, government documentation requirements, or financial accounting. Thirty years ago, Consuelo Lopez, Dr. Welby's loyal and able nurse had time to hand out candy to the children. Now she's too busy with meeting the increasing demands of the industrial-medical complex.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Off The Reservation...For a Day

Took the day off and went for a nice ride on the V-Star up to Woodland Park. Wow, why didn't I discover the stress releasing wonder of zooming along at 60 MPH through tight mountain curves sooner? Such power and smooth motoring. Amazing machine and fun to control. I just might give up the working life and ride off into the sunset. Oh..guess I've got to pay for the bike and my other bad habits.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Why Are We Outraged?

The Watchman came across news of the "End-of-Life Guide" supposedly brought back into distribution to Veterans by the Obama Administration. The airwaves are a twitter with outrage and one Senator (Arlen "Turn Coat" Spector) hotly called for a congressional investigation. Guess that's one way to shore up a weasel's flip flopping. As it turns out, apparently the guide was published up to 1997 when it was taken out of circulation. While the BHO administration is dumb to bring it back now while we are all arguing over 'death panels', it was used in past democratic and republican led VA administrations. So let's call this one, at least on the surface, a draw.

That said, the blogs title, "Why Are We Outraged?" reflects the concern of our apparent national hypocrisy over death issues, where death is either at the hands of an abortionist or from the needle for euthanasia of our elders. Indeed why are we outraged? With abortion, killing an innocent unborn defenseless baby, it is done with nary a thought or a how-de-do. The industrial-abortion factories churn out over 1.5 million abortions a year. Big business if I ever saw one! So why the outrage over suggesting a few Vets think of offing themselves? The true 100% disabled, functionally worthless blobs of living tissue are hardly any different than their younger yet unborn counter parts at the other end of the spectrum. Wouldn't it be more convenient for them and other non-vets of similar circumstance to simply pull the plug and just DIE. They are a burden on society aren't they? They require constant care like a baby don't they? They might be of a terrible home-family situation where the wife does crack or is a prostitute. May be the parents don't have extra money to care for their wounded Solider, the poor soul would be sentenced to a life of deprivation. So wouldn't it be just better for the Vet and disabled if we just ended their lives for them? They probably would thank us, don't you think?

Once a nation begins to slide down that slippery slope of considering one segment of society to be worthless, it doesn't take long to find other segments to be equally unworthy of life, liberty, and happiness. So if you are going to be outraged about suggesting we snuff out disabled Vets, handicapped, and elderly citizens, then you'd better be outraged by the blind killing of the unborn. By the millions.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Whole Foods Markets - Part II

The Left is in full attack mode. Several months ago the Watchman made the observation that one of the tactics of socialists and Marxists is to first to eat their own so as to consolidate power and enable focused effort on those who oppose their plans. We are now seeing the first signs of this phenomenon. I reported on Whole Foods' CEO, Mr. Mackey, audacity to write an opinion in opposition to President Obama's health care plans and how the left's reaction was to declare war on Whole Foods by boycotting the business. Apparently over 18,000 incensed customers wrote to Whole Foods' Facebook page indicating they are no longer going to patronize Whole Foods. They are declaring Mr. Mackey is a out-of-the-closet conservative worthy of having his business fall into bankrupcy and thousands of workers put on the unemployment line as punishment for daring to oppose BHO's form of health care reform. But let's take a closer look at Mr. Mackey.

Two years ago, Mr. Mackey looked at his own personal income and values he ascribes too and decided he could live comfortably on what his investments brought in. So he set his CEO pay at $1.00 per year. Yes you read that right. One US Dollar per year. Then during the past year of recession his company HIRED 8,200 workers, making good on their promise to continued provision of first class service to their patrons. Then he decided that all future stock options he would gain as the CEO would be DONATED to charity. Now tell me does this sound like a raving radical right-wing, gun toting, Bible thumping, red necked conservative? Not to me. Kind of wish I worked for Whole Foods!

Because one man dared to present eight common sense reform proposals that conflicted with the party line, he and Whole Foods is being pilloried. The left smells blood in the water and a feeding frenzy is underway.

This weekend, head to a local Whole Foods Market, ask for the manager, and tell him that you are there not because you agree with Mr. Mackey, but because you support his (and our) right to free speech without fear of potential retribution by those who can not win the argument on substance.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Never Underestimate Americans: A lesson for us all

A friend sent the Watchman this video. Regardless of your political views, left or right, one can't help but be moved by the message this young man created.

This resulted from a Mom in Alabama asking her high school son to help with a commercial for the Tea Party she was involved in organizing. It truly slams the message home. Very impressive. Here is her note: "I asked Justin if he could help me make a commercial for my group's Tea Party. He sat down at the laptop for about an hour, and then brought this to me and asked, is this okay, Mom?' After I finished watching it, my stomach was in my throat. Everyone that I have sent it to has really enjoyed it, so I wanted my friends to see it. I am so proud!" A very powerful video...turn up the sound & sit back!

Tea Party Commercial

2009 - The Summer That Never Came and The Check is in the Mail

I know most of my friends in Kansas will scream foul, but believe it or not here in Colorado we've never really had summer. In Colorado Springs we have had record lows and rain just about every other day, and cloudy when not raining. Hottest day has been 87 and if I recall, that lasted all of ten minutes before the clouds moved in for the afternoon rain. If this is global warming, then I'm most glad for it. Where our landscape is usually by mid-August a burnt brown with dust devils blowing skyward, we have a verdant green, rich in every hue. Only draw back is with the cool nights and lukewarm days, the Watchman's tomatoes aren't ripening very well. If they don't, then I'm going to have a giant, all you can eat, green tomato fry on the patio with lots of zucchini bread!

The Watchman can't resist a little political observation. As you all know I've been closely keeping an eye on the health care legislation debate and other wonders of the BHO administration. I heard reported this morning that less than 2% of the car dealers who have submitted the paperwork for reimbursement for fronting the Cash 4 Clunkers program have yet to receive payment. Wonder how many dealerships will now go under because they couldn't get the thousands they loaned the administration for the program with the promise of quick payback. Had to laugh as the Watchman deals with contract payments to vendors every day and after seeing how inept the "electronic" payment system is, I would never want to bet my company's net worth on the "Prompt Payment Act". We had one case where a data entry clerk innocently typed in the wrong 4-digit code for the defense pay office and it took over 5 months to get it straightened out! (By the way the vendor elected NOT to claim interest as he rightly figured the original payment of $82.0K would be held up to process the claim.)

These two activities, Clunkers and Contractor payments, are good evidence of how we don't want government 'innovating' health care administration. I can see going to the death committee's web site and typing in the wrong code so instead of having your ingrown toe nail removed, you get a vasectomy instead. Or how cheerful do you think Doc Miller going to be when you next visit, he hasn't gotten payment for your last three visits, and the local Obamacare point of contact tells the good doctor the 'check is in the mail'.

Aspects to ponder, eh?

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Whole Foods for Whole People

Fox News reports upon publication of John Mackey, co-founder and CEO of Whole Foods, opinion in the Friday Wall Street Journal on the health care debt the left wing nuts are forming an all out boycott of the chain. (Whole Foods CEO's Health Care Views Provoke Some Customers to Boycott Store) His opinion contains some pretty grounded ideas on how to fix what needs fixing and leaving that part of the health system that works alone. Nutters on the left wrote comments such as:
"While it was a horrible business move, it was a great courtesy," a commenter identified as boycottwf wrote. "Now, I know that my dollars spent at whole foods are going to fund your misguided conservative views."

The commenter added, "Until you publicly apologize to the nation and pledge that you will provide better benefits to your employees, I will not spend another dime at your store."
BETTER benefits for employees!! Most of the 45 million uninsured would kill for his company's health program that lets workers develop a roll-over health savings account ultimately belonging to them and not Dear Leader Obama. Actually boycottwf''s dollars goes to employee a whole bunch of organic vendors and world wide PC producers of natural products lefty nutters need to keep their karma in alignment with the star Polaris.

Another so-called enlightened lefty wrote:
".......identified as Betrayed, who claims to have been a customer for
nearly 20 years, said, "I was so shocked to read Mr. Mackey's horrible, horrible
opinion in the WSJ. I hope this severely hurts his profits. His customer base is
mostly liberal Democrats who will, like me, be horrified at what we have been
supporting all this time."

Just like the liberal left, whine about things while sipping their organic Chi as they check out of Whole Foods after buying the latest political correct coffee or chocolate. (Obvious a shallow customer: buys organic but hasn't a clue about the business principles of the company.) The boycott will flame out eventually as the left really doesn't want to give up the only quality source of organic foods in many cities.

Apparently neither of the posters to WSJ must have understood what Mr. Mackey wrote. Talk about knee-jerk reaction. What could be more organic and natural than home grown health care, where the local community and individuals take care of themselves. Mackey's is all for over-haul of the health care system, just he wants the incremental, targeted changes that will make an immediate and real impact to millions of citizens. Power to the people, not Washington DC. Actually several of his improvements are part of the proposed plans, stated in plain language, and doesn't require Big Brother's hand in our wallet to do it.

The Watchman for one will be happy to go to Whole Foods. I call on all conservatives to support Mr. Mackey for his right to operate Whole Foods the way he wants and encourage his proactive approach to employee benefits.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Reason #2 Why Government Should Not Run Health Care

Thus far in my investigation, no where in the legislation does it state how much I will pay for government health care and when it will actually be available. When a mutual fund sales person presents a sales pitch to buy shares in a fund, by law, they have to provide a prospectus of the fund to inform you of what the current cost per share is and what the investment consists of. If you sign up, they have to tell you when your shares will be purchased and most importantly if you sell your shares when they will be sold. In the health care legislation, neither of these facts are presented. In fact it appears the authors have purposely wrote the legislation such that a platoon of lawyers would be needed to determine what it does or doesn't do!

The preamble to both House and Senate bills state the purpose of the laws are to provide affordable health care to all citizens. So how can we know what if it is affordable if no individual premium cost is presented? The Congressional Budget Office presented numbers of the cost for the overall program, but how does that translate to what we have to render to Cesar? How will can we evaluate what our individual cost will be in comparison to our current costs? We need to know this before a law is passed the creates a massive overhaul of the system that may be irreversible with out substantial damage to our economy. Should we know the cost before we sign the papers? And shouldn't we know what the base line rules are for entry into and exit from the public option? I think so. President Obama owes us a truth in health care cost explanation.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Reason # 1 Why Government Should Not Run Health Care

The Watchman is a government employee for the military-industrial complex. So I have a pretty good idea of how government run, public option, Obama-Care or what ever euphemism is used to describe a system where government is involved in health care administration will actually operate. The #1 reason is bureaucratic ineptitude and multiple layers of redundant and non-value added approval processes. Every government employee wants cover. That's called CYA in most circles. So every, and I do mean every, decision from buying toilet paper to nuclear weapons has layer upon layer of required approvals from start to finish. I work the environmental arena, and to acquire a simple service such as inventorying the number of blue eyed deer on our installation using a contractor takes no less than 10 civilians from GS-11 to GM-15 passing judgement and if the action involves greater than $1.0M, six more high paid upper level command staff have to sign off on it! All but three are non-value added steps that cost you the tax payer big bucks. (You may ask why doesn't the Watchman just go out and count the deer himself. I would love to, but then who would do all the approvals for the other projects?) Multiple this one action by 10thousand and you see why military has to have so many government employees.

Now, just imagine having to process claims for 375 million people enrolled in public option health care! Only one benefit to this is a lower unemployment rate, but then do you want Doug who took 10th grade three times to be in the approval chain to get your new kidneys? While a shortage of doctors/nurses will result in rationed care, there will be plenty of bureaucrats by the thousands to review your request, passing the paper in an endless loop of CYA. So far I haven't seen any discussion of the HOW on implementation of the democratic plans. And that my friends is just the tip of the iceberg waiting to rip out the guts of American health care system.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Who Would Have Thought?

"McCarthyism is the politically motivated practice of making accusations of disloyalty, subversion, or treason without proper regard for evidence." (italics added)

Who would have thought the Democrats would resurrect the vestige of Senator Joseph McCarthy? The Watchman was born in 1952 smack dab in the middle of the big "Red Scare". Many younger folks don't remember much about that black spot on American history, but the story now needs to be relearned. Over the past two weeks we have heard a rising crescendo of accusation and innuendo by Democratic Congressional leadership, especially Speaker Pelosi, that characterizes citizens who attend their local congressional Representatives town halls as "Nazis" and "unAmerican". Speaker Pelosi has no evidence Nazis are running the protests, nor is it unAmerican to dissent. In fact I thought is was the democrats who invented the concept during Viet Nam, Gulf I and II. At that time it was considered "patriotic" to dissent. But I guess not now, when the President anoints a plan to socialize health care in America.

The Obama White House in a frenzy of fear, promotes a web site and an email address where "fishy" people can be reported as fermenting dissent on the chosen plan. With this new tactic, as stupid as calling an entire police department stupid, brings the specter of "McCarthyism". Again, who would have ever thought this would happen again in America?

The Watchman considers it no small risk to register his dissent to the health care program being shoved down the communal throats of American citizens. If McCarthy was able to black list whole groups of people for alleged communist ties, its not too hard to imagine what the Administration could do with today's modern electronic technology. Is it too far fetched to think my last tax return might suddenly be picked for an audit? Or how about monitoring my financial records or cell phone. Remember the Patriot Act, that allows the government to eavesdrop? Under a moral President we're safe, under Obama, I'm not so sure he won't twist the law to his own use. Or maybe I'll get a visit from an Acorn or Union staff member, carrying a pick-axe handle, to persuade me to reconsider my view. As a federal employee, might my name surface for a "reduction in force"? You laugh...ask those black listed during the Red Scare.

It is most disturbing to see leaders who should know better, insult and castigate the average citizen for taking a stand in opposition to the government under their Constitutional First Amendment rights. And for the White House to energize a "Fink" site is alarmingly similar to the old Soviet Union's methods to intimidate its comrades into submission. Every American of every political party should call on the Administration to immediately stop this activity. For if it continues, then every American should be most afraid of the ghost of McCarthy past.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Quiet Weekend

The Watchman had a pretty quiet two days. Cleaned the garage. Made another 6 pounds of sauerkraut. Killed some weeds with round-up. Burned a couple of steaks on the grill. Had green fried tomatoes. Walked the dogs. Threw a couple of pots on the wheel. Dabbed some paint on a picture I've been working on. Watched a little TV.

I often watch the home & garden channel while making breakfast. Never ceases to amaze me how we are gently inculcated to believe bigger is better, more is not enough, and we can have it all. The real estate shows where home owners want to know if they can get a bazillion dollars for their 4,500 SF house so they can buy a 5,500 SF house. One house had a bedroom so big that you'd need a GPS unit to find the bathroom from the bed. The owner wasn't satisfied with it! For the Watchman life is about contentment. Being happy with what you have and not struggling to have more, bigger,faster and now. I think we'd all be a little more happy if we turned off the tube and sat in a lawn chair to watch the sun go down and the stars come out!

Friday, August 7, 2009

May I Ask Your Thoughts?

A reader wrote to The Watchman with a question regarding my blog on abortion and Volvos: "Without wanting to take any particular side in the argument, may I ask for your thoughts about medical cases where the decision for an abortion is offered as an alternative to maternal death if the pregnancy proceeds?"

My thoughts? From my perspective the situation represents the worse case scenario for any couple to face. A couple reached a point in their marriage where children are desired and then suddenly their dreams, hopes, and desires are dashed. Making it far worse, they face a terrible decision, to risk carrying the child to term, endangering the mother, losing a spouse, or terminating the life they've created in their union of love. The decision is a heart rendering situation and a moral conundrum. I'm sure it has been faced by many couples. Each feeling their way forward in this dark passage of their life, hoping they made the right decision, all the while looking for a light to give them assurance in the end all will be well.

For my part, the decision is an intensely personal and private decision. The community should not look upon what ever decision is made negatively. I'm not a theologian, but in my understanding, our loving Father who created us in His own image, would not condemn an individual for either committing the abortion or opting to carry the baby to term in this situation, if their motives were genuinely driven by a desire to do what is best/right.

Where this situation gets murky is the interpretation of "life threatening
condition" and how one arrived at the point of decision. There are
individuals and medical providers who will look for any excuse to abort
a child, thus the "life of the mother" reason is a convenient retreat
when other reasons are not available. Is the decision reached on a whim, the word of one planned parenthood doctor or made after searching one's heart and gaining greater wisdom from other objective physicians.

However, again, what mortal can know the true motive of another person's heart? My animosity against abortion is its indiscriminate use as a general population control method. The abortion practice results in the unintended consequence of devaluing human life by our society and further degeneration of moral values its practice begets. When one devalues human life as a routine practice, then, as I wrote earlier, it is so much easier to justify doing even more evil. Without thinking or reflection. Our hearts become hard and the ends justify any means.

To me one of the most comforting passages in the New Testament is in
Romans 7:21 through 8:4. This passage tells of Paul's struggles to do
what is righteous in the face of his human nature to be sinful. The
glorious part is despite our best effort we will still be in sin, but
can find solace in the fact that Jesus negated sin by his sacrifice on
the cross. "Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are
in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of
life set me free from the law of sin and death."(Romans 8:1-2) Thus if
one makes either decision, whether to abort the child to save the mother
or to risk death in the birth of a child, we are free in Christ Jesus if
we do so from a spirit of righteous.

The Christian community's acceptance is so vital for the positive outcome of the
individuals involved. We should be ultra supportive, extra compassionate, and deeply merciful to any one or couple that must face this challenge. For if they are not yet come into a relationship with Jesus, a hard heart may forever drive them a way, rightly condemning our hypocrisy. If they are our Christian brother and sister, then our respect for their decision can lead to deeper love of one another and ever more devotion to our Savior. My thoughts? Do as Jesus would do, simply love them as they are, showing them the light they yearn to see at the end of this dark path.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Connecting The Dots

Greetings again from the liquid sunshine state! I think we're beating out Seattle for daily rain.

In the "If you don't believe me" department. Fox News has series on the coming commercial real estate bubble bust. Last Thursday the Watchman warned the Republic about this very real developing financial crisis. Elizabeth MacDonald writes about The Second Wave of the Credit Crisis being predicted by many experts. It is a three parter, so have to be patient to read all installments. Still, it is another independent dot to connect that not all is well fiscally in America despite administration shouts of economic victory.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Cabbage and Motorcycles

The Watchman attempted to make sauerkraut last month. A total dismal failure. Used way too much salt and was a better poultice for a gaping flesh wound from a minnie ball at the Battle of Bull Run. So headed to the local farmer's market and got me three giant heads of cabbage for $4 bucks. Took my refurbished antique cabbage shredder and made up a crock full of cabbage, actually measured out the salt this time and proceeded to mash the salted cabbage into the crock. Should result in a good batch. Problem is I bought two too many heads of cabbage! Just like the government I over estimated the need and unless I want 12 more pounds of sauerkraut I got to figure out what to do with the excess. Cash for Cabbage?

Sold my Yamaha V-Star 250 over the week-end. Also similar to the government this time I underestimated the size to do the job and will actually cause an over all cost over-run to acquire a bigger bike. My eye is on Yamaha's V-Star 950. (At 47 mpg, the government should be paying me a gas saver differential.) Now this baby should rattle the dishes in the house when I leave for work! Let me know your thoughts on this aspect. Am I crazy or what?