Monday, May 19, 2008

"These Countries Are Tiny" - Obama

Strong countries are supposed to talk to their adversaries to determine where their common interests lie - that according to Barack Obama. Further more, he states that we really have nothing to fear from Cuba, Venezuela, or Iran because they're tiny and that they spend 1/100th of what we spend on military capabilities. Well Barack, well educated man that you are, let's check on the tiny statement. Let's check wikipedia, shall we?
Iran is the eighteenth largest country in the world after Libya and before Mongolia. Its area roughly equals that of the United Kingdom, France, Spain, and Germany combined, or slightly less than the state of Alaska.
Oh, did I see Germany in there? Well not to worry, Germany is so small it would never threaten anyone. I guess maybe if they were ever bent on global domination and started attacking their neighbors. Or maybe if they started to pursue nuclear weapons. Or maybe if they ... oh wait, they did those things and we had to sacrifice over 400,000 American lives and almost 4% of the global population while we bombed them back into the stone age.

Barack, this is not the same situation as Regan talking to the USSR. You can not discuss global politics and playing nice with others with countries and dictators that openly sponsor terrorism. I tell you one thing that is not tiny, and that's how naive you are and how dangerous for our country you would be.

Waiting to show Iran our military strength, as you insinuate in your speech, until they have acted would be too late. It is not acceptable for either Israel, the United States, or any other country to suffer the devastating whim of Ahmadinejad when we have the right as a civilized planet to keep him in check.

Barack, America simply can not afford your naive approach to global politics or your wife's lack of pride in our country.

##That's my opinion##

Friday, May 16, 2008

Al Gore and the inconvienent truth about "An Inconvienent Truth"

If I was on IM I would say "ROTF LMAO". ABC has exposed that Al Gore is using computer generated shots in "An Inconvenient Truth".

I love it. Al Gore... you hack.

-End of Ramble

Thursday, May 15, 2008

To follow on to Lucid's post...

I came across this article in the Washington Post from Susan Jacoby title "The Dumbing of America". I believe that this is part of the problem with why we, as Americans, do not accept the hard truth about Iraq, Oil, health care, whatever you want to throw into the mix. We don't want to worry about what is happening until it directly affects us. We don't pay attention to the world. We give it a cursory glance and look the the eyes of the internet browser but rarely do people apply their own thought processes to what they are reading.

We are a people who close our eyes to anything outside our immediate viewpoint, or beyond our recent time frame. In the world of instant on, high speed data transfer and instant video we no longer want to wait. We want it all now and don't want to work for it. An old adage of "practice makes perfect" has gone down the wayside. We want a plug in the back of our head like Neo in the Matrix to learn Kung Fu in a few seconds.

Where is our work ethic? What happened to us? We used to be the standard that was looked up to... with hard work anything is possible. Now we want it all done for us. We don't want to make hard decisions. We don't want to change. Why?

I believe Ms. Jacoby is right on throughout her article. We are an arrogant people who have gotten lazy. At the same time we cannot replace arrogance with appeasement for the world. It is a delicate balance. What Ms. Jacoby misses is that we have lost our way and that we have failed to maintain a unique identity as America. We need to get back to our roots... To what made us great... The great melting pot...

-End of Ramble

Monday, May 12, 2008

Running On Empty

Do you believe that gas is too expensive? Considering all of the factors that influence the price of gasoline; market demand, market speculation, the number of boutique blends required by the U.S., and the whims of OPEC, it's my opinion that gasoline is still on the cheap side. Yeah, I said the CHEAP side. If you believe that the current prices of $3.25 to $3.75 a gallon are causing you to change your life style and to make different choices, what are you going to do when the price hits $5.00 a gallon? How about $10.00 a gallon? I truly believe that we will see $10.00 gas within the next five years. Perhaps then we will be motivated to prove once again that we are the most resourceful nation that the world has ever seen and devise a plan to move us forward.

What is it going to take to motivate us, the United States, to move away from oil as a source of energy? Fidel's best friend, Hugo Chavez, is laughing at us and making sure that the world believes anything bad that happens to Venezuela is the United States fault. There would be such a beneficial, global domino effect if the United States was not dependent on oil for energy. Most of the financial sources for terrorism would dry up and dictators like Chavez and Ahmadinejad would no longer have a voice on the world stage. [Are We Motivated Yet? - posted this blog August 19, 2006]

Scandinavia is building a Hydrogen Highway. Now this is not going to solve all of their challenges with gasoline, but it sure is a great start. The plans are to start with a fleet of vehicle for public transportation that consist of both gasoline powered cars and hydrogen powered cars. As the business model proves itself out, they will introduce more hydrogen vehicles and reduce their dependence on oil. The stations are planned to be solar powered and to derive the hydrogen from the air - leaving only water as a byproduct.

Now I'm a southern boy and I don't know a lot about big city commuting, but I've heard a lot of people commute everyday between large cities and the suburbs. There has to be some prime testing grounds for a U.S. Hydrogen Highway project to get us started down at least one alternative path. One thing that I am definitely tired of is seeing TV commercials from oil companies telling me how much they are doing for alternative energy. Give me a break. If the oil companies were really concerned, our cars would be getting better than an average of 20 miles per gallon.

So, now that I dinged the oil companies, I need to make one other point very clear. Taking profits from the oil companies for any reason is both wrong and ineffective. Once you start taking profits from any company based upon some government mandate, where does it stop? If the oil companies are so evil for their profits, then why not cap the net profit that Microsoft can make? For that matter, why not cap how much professional athletes, doctors, race car drivers, or musicians can make? How about the extreme fees paid to speech makers like Bill Clinton? Certainly his net profit from speeches is higher than Exxon Mobil. Furthermore, taking the oil company profits has the opposite of the desire effect. Taking the profits cause the oil company to invest less in research and development which limits supply which drives up demand - ergo, higher gas prices. This is economics 101.

Let's prove to the world that our ingenuity is not running on empty and that we can find sustainable alternative sources of fuel. Let's turn our back on oil and move our country forward showing the rest of the world the way to freedom. Let's see how long the engine of terrorism can sustain itself without oil revenue. Let's see the terrorist states that don't play well in the international community try to grow wheat or corn in desert sand.

OPEC - go pound sand!

##That's my opinion##

Sunday, May 11, 2008

America's Interests and the U.N.

John Bolton, former U.S. ambassador to the U.N., was kind enough to provide additional United Nations material in the last issue of Imprimis - publication from Hillsdale College. Mr Bolton speaks of the internal politics and the ineffective management of the U.N. Most concerning, he speaks of the dangers "norming".

“Norming” is the idea that the U.S. should base its decisions on some kind of international consensus, rather than making its decisions as a constitutional democracy. It is a way in which the Europeans and their left-wing friends here and elsewhere try and constrain U.S. sovereignty. You can see how disastrous this would be just by looking at the geography of the floor of the U.N. General Assembly. Look out at the representatives of the 192 governments spread out over the floor and you wonder where the U.S. even is. Well, we’re there somewhere. But the fact is that we’re sitting with a majority of countries that have no traditions or understanding of liberty. The argument of the advocates of “norming” is “one nation, one vote.” That sounds very democratic: Who could object to that? But its result would be very anti-democratic. As an illustration of this, a friend of mine once went to a conference on international law and heard a professor from a major European university say, “The problem with the United States is its devotion to its Constitution over international norms.”

If the international community has such a problem with the United States "devotion" to its Constitution, then the rest of the member states should take their complaints and requests for "aid" elsewhere - we have real problems to deal with.

And on terrorism:

Although the U.N. is perfectly capable of passing resolutions about the death penalty and gun control—not to mention smoking—it has proved utterly incapable, even after 9/11, of agreeing to a definition of terrorism that would enable it to denounce terrorism. The U.N. is incapable of doing this, even to this day, because several member governments think there is good terrorism and bad terrorism. It is inconceivable, in my judgment, that the U.N. will ever be able to agree upon a definition of terrorism that’s not complete pablum—and therefore utterly useless.

The entire article is a worthwhile read. If you do not already have your free subscription to Hillsdales' Imprimis, I would highly recommend it.

##That's my opinion##

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Did You Say Billion - With A "B"?

Excuse me? We are going to let the United Nations control $1.88 billion to renovate the UN Building complex? This has to be some sort of twilight zone joke. In 2005 Donald Trump offered to perform the work for $700 million and to waive his personal management fee. I guess Donald didn't have the experience or resume that the UN was looking for in it's quid pro quo project deal.

But this is my favorite part. According to the UN's website, Brian Streb will be in charge of procurement and he said
...that every effort would be made to follow the
General Assembly's mandate to create opportunities for developing countries and
those in transition to participate in the procurement process. One of the
criteria for the selection of the company that will lead the renovation will be
its ability to incorporate services and suppliers from developing
countries. He also said that the glass for the curtain wall might come from China and the steel reinforcement from India.
China and India? Well why not. They are just number one and number two in the "blame evil America first" environmental club.

Mr. Streb, I have an opportunity for you. Provide another nation the opportunity and pleasure of playing host to the United Nations headquarters. Since the new world sport seems to be "hate America", give someone else the pleasure of playing host. I recommend Paris, unless they have already succumbed to Sharia law.

##That's my opinion##

Monday, May 05, 2008

Sheriff Joe Arpaio...

Got this in an e-mail. Had to share. This guy is on to something. Why can't we take cues from him for all our jails?
Maricopa County was spending approx. $18 million dollars a year on stray animals, like cats and dogs. Sheriff Joe offered to take the department over, and the County Supervisors said okay. The animal shelters are now all staffed and operated by prisoners. They feed and care for the strays. Every animal in his care is taken out and walked twice daily. He now has prisoners who are experts in animal nutrition and behavior. They give great classes for anyone who'd like to adopt an animal. He has literally taken stray dogs off the street, given them to the care of prisoners, and had them place in dog shows. The best part? His budget for the entire department is now under $3 million. Teresa and I adopted a Weimaraner from a Maricopa County shelter two years ago. He was neutered, and current on all shots, in great health, and even had a microchip inserted the day we got him. Cost us $78.
The prisoners get the benefit of about $0.28 an hour for working, but most would work for free, just to be out of their cells for the day. Most of his budget is for utilities, building maintenance, etc. He pays the prisoners out of the fees collected for adopted animals.

I have long wondered when the rest of the country would take a look at the way he runs the jail system, and copy some of his ideas. He has a huge farm, donated to the county years ago, where inmates can work, and they grow most of their own fresh vegetables and food, doing all the work and harvesting by hand. He has a pretty good sized hog farm, which provides meat, and fertilizer. It fertilizes the Christmas tree nursery, where prisoners work, and you can buy a living Christmas tree for $6 - $8 for the Holidays, and plant it later. We have six trees in our yard from the Prison.

Yup, he was reelected last year with 83% of the vote. Now he's in trouble with the ACLU again. He painted all his buses and vehicles with a mural, that has a special hotline phone number painted on it, where you can call and report suspected illegal aliens. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement wasn't doing enough in his eyes, so he had 40 deputies trained specifically for enforcing immigration laws, started up his hotline, and bought 4 new buses just for hauling folks back to the border. He's kind of a 'Git-R Dun' kind of Sheriff.

Some examples of the work of Sheriff Joe Arpaio (In Arizona ) who created the ' Tent City Jail':
  • He has jail meals down to 40 cents a serving and charges the inmates for them.
  • He stopped smoking and porno magazines in the jails.
  • Took away their weights Cut off all but 'G' movies.
  • He started chain gangs so the inmates could do free work on county and city projects. Then He Started Chain Gangs For Women So He Wouldn't get Sued For Discrimination.
  • He took away cable TV Until he found out there was A Federal Court Order that Required Cable TV For Jails So He Hooked Up The Cable TV Again Only Let In The Disney Channel And The Weather Channel. When asked why the weather channel He Replied, So They Will Know How Hot It's Gonna Be While They Are Working on MY Chain Gangs.
  • He Cut Off Coffee Since It Has Zero Nutritional Value. When the inmates complained, he told them, 'This Isn't The Ritz/Carlton.....If You Don't Like It, Don't Come Back.'
  • He bought Newt Gingrich's lecture series on videotape that he pipes into the jails. When asked by a reporter if he had any lecture series by a Democrat, he replied that a democratic lecture series might explain why a lot of the inmates were in his jails in the first place.
He is taking quite a bit of flack for his "over the top" raids as media stunts. He is currently in trouble with the ACLU:
Now he's in trouble with the ACLU again. He painted all his buses and vehicles with a mural, that has a special hotline phone number painted on it, where you can call and report suspected illegal aliens. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement wasn't doing enough in his eyes, so he had 40 deputies trained specifically for enforcing immigration laws, started up his hotline, and bought 4 new buses just for hauling folks back to the border.
Wiki Article on Joe Arpaio can be found HERE

Maricopa county sheriff's office has comments HERE

The e-mail even made SNOPES and is True

Of course he does have his share of detractors and people who are unhappy with his ways. google him and you will find out all kinds of things. I can say that I do agree with his base premise that prison is not supposed to be easy or fun.

-End of Ramble