Open Thread 2-28

What is on your mind?  Are we hyping ourselves into a recession over fears that a 1.2% cut will cause all sorts of havoc? the White House could create an atmosphere of confidence which would free enough private investment from the sidelines to make up for the federal spending cuts in the economy, but they seem to be doing the opposite.  Why? You create the reality that you believe. Celia Cohen is already looking toward 2014 and asking will Delaware be exempt from the 6 year itch this cycle? If the Democrats in Delaware had bad election years anymore, the one coming up in 2014 could make them jittery. It will be the Six-Year Itch. The name is an actual term in politics for something that occurs with the same predictability of leap years, blue moons and Governor's Day at the Delaware State Fair. It is the nomenclature for an election that falls in the sixth year of a Read more

European Economic Turmoil

Nothing seems to satisfy the investors. Great Britain did everything the big bond guys say they wanted, austerity through radical spending cuts and tax hikes. They were rewarded with slow economic growth prospects and downgraded from AAA. Italian voters have rejected the austerity path of pay the bankers first followed by the current government, and the bond markets are in a turmoil. The French decided to pretend they can just tax the rich and their economy is in standstill. The outflow of capital to bail out everyone else is helping slow the mighty German economy based strongly upon exporting to a world cutting back. Is there a catch 22? If you do not control debt your economy implodes, if you follow the IMF path of austerity, you suffer short term slowing and they still lower your ratings. There is no wonder policy makers are confused. I believe the casualty in this could be the multinational Read more

DHS To Release Thousands Of Illegal Immigrants, Blaming Sequestration

According to Fox News, the DHS has started releasing hundreds of illegal immigrants being held in local jails because of expected budgets cuts. Arizona's Pinal County Sheriff, Paul Babeu said Tuesday, that Immigration and Customs Enforcement had released more than 500 detainees. Babeu described the move as "mass budget pardon" and suggested the administration was going to unnecessary lengths to demonstrate the impact of the so-called sequester. "President Obama would never release 500 criminal illegals to the streets of his home town, yet he has no problem with releasing them in Arizona. The safety of the public is threatened and the rule of law discarded as a political tactic in this sequester battle." he said. An ICE official confirmed the plans without specifying how many illegal immigrants might be released. Spokeswoman Gillian Christensen said ICE had directed field offices Read more

Obama’s Claims Are False on Sequester Responsibility

The Washington Post's Bob Woodward Maintains that the commander-in-chief need look no further than his own White House if he wants to blame someone for this sequester disaster. Woodward, who works as an associate editor at the Post, said the $85 billion in automatic spending cuts that are set to begin on Friday are surrounded by "misunderstanding, misstatement and all the classic contortion of partisan message management." The cuts amount to a total of $1.2 trillion over 10 years. "Obama personally approved of the plan for Lew and Nabors to propose the sequester to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid," asserted Woodward. "They did so at 2:30 p.m. July 27, 2011, according to interviews with two senior White House aides who were directly involved." Woodward also cited comments attributed to Nabors. "Nabors has told others that they checked with the president before going to see Reid," Read more

The Culture of Death Admits Child in Womb A Life

Yeah, it is undeniable for anyone with a bit of intellectual honesty. Today’s technology removed all questions. That is why the “Pro-Choice” movement hates the offer of seeing an ultrasound be part of informed consent. Now they are shifting arguments, So what if Abortion ends a life asks Salon’s Mary Elizabeth Williams? She chillingly says it is a life worth sacrificing. It is the cry of every tyrant (tyranny is the exploitation or domination of weak for the benefit of the powerful). It is now owned by so called Pro-choice America. Since we are finally having an honest discussion, call it Pro-Abortion Choice America.

What Conservatives Can Learn from Pope Benedict XVI

I will miss His Holiness Benedict XVI because he was a leading light of Christ in darkness of soul decaying secularism, numbing nihilism, and the inhumanity of dehumanization. Benedict taught us to value the dignity of humanity because we are all created in the image of GOD. He taught us the importance of rejecting the dehumanization of one another. He reminded us that GOD is supreme and our purpose for living can only be discovered in recognizing that GOD's laws are never outmoded. The human wisdom is informed through the divine wisdom. It does not substitute for it. Benedict is a philosopher and a leader. He gave every bit of strength to raising the banner of our Lord. Conservatives can take notes. Benedict stood strong for traditional virtues without compromising his principles, but he was willing to listen. He was not afraid to go after the root of the problem and challenge Read more

Family Impact Statements

Question of the day, we have environmental impact statements for new projects, the state requires budgetary impact statements for new state law as as we should in both cases, Is it time for family impact statements? The biggest problem in America is that at best public policy does not take into account the impact on families and at worst some directly undermine them. Give you an example, one proposed state law would require your health insurance to pay for a school based clinic treatment of your child and simultaneously ban them from telling you what treatment your child received. Efforts to undermine parental authority abound. Marriage is disrespected. The government wants to be intrusive in discipline. The right to protect your family is undermined with new proposals like 1000 feet gun free school zone. What if you live in a neighborhood with a school? When children are taken from families Read more

Firearms Companies Restricting Sales To Government Agencies In Areas That Restrict Gun Rights

Cnsnews reports that a growing number of firearm and firearm-related companies have stated they will no longer sell items to states, counties, cities and municipalities that restrict their citizens' rights to own them. According to "The Police Loophole," 34 companies have joined in publicly stating that governments who seek to restrict Second Amendment rights will themselves be restricted from purchasing the items they seek to limit or ban. Extreme Firepower Inc., located in Inwood, WV has had a longstanding policy that states: "The Federal Government and several states have enacted gun control laws that restrict the public from owning and possessing certain types of firearms. If a product that we manufacture is not legal for a private citizen to own in a jurisdiction, we will not sell that product to a law-enforcement in that jurisdiction." York Arms, located in Buxton, ME released Read more

Obama and Sequestration, What’s He Gonna Do?

Caught in his own trap, in an effort to propose an ultimatum so laughable and obvious that it backfired, Obama could have caused a lose-lose situation for his administration and the country. Jack Lew, former director of Obama's office of Management and Budget and Rob Nabors, the president's Legislative affairs director brought the idea of a "sequester" to Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid July 27, 2011. The idea evolved and a failure of Congress and the White House to agree on substantial deficit reductions would trigger automatic accross-the-board budget cuts. Members of both parties voted for that provision and Obama signed it into law. But the New Year's 2013 deal that raised taxes to avoid the "fiscal cliff" also delayed the sequester's impact -- $85 billion over the rest of this fiscal year -- until March 1. Democrats expected all along that some agreement would exterminate the Read more

Obama Considers Stepping In On California Gay Marriage Issue

According to Associated Press news reports, the Obama Administration is considering urging the Supreme Court to overturn California's ban on gay marriage, a move that could have a far-reaching impact on same-sex couples across the country. The administration has one week to file a friend-of-the-court brief with the with the justices outlining its opinion on the California ban, known a Proposition 8. While an administration brief alone is unlikely to sway the high court, the government's opinion does carry weight with the justices. The Proposition 8 ballot initiative was approved by California voters in 2008 in response to a state Supreme Court decision that had allowed gay marriage. Twenty-nine other states have constitutional amendments banning gay marriage, while nine states and Washington, D.C., recognize same-sex marriage. While the Justice Department would make the filing, Read more

J. C. Watts Launches New Initiative

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 19, 2013 Contact: Brandon Andrews Phone: 703-665-9226 J.C. Watts Announces The Launch of INSIGHT America Nonprofit to Focus on Minority Policy Solutions and Leadership Development WASHINGTON, D.C. – Former Congressman J.C. Watts today announced the creation of INSIGHT America, a 501(c)4 nonprofit organization that exists to empower communities though leadership development for current minority Capitol Hill staffers and to recruit the next generation of public policy leaders. Through its Read more

Chinese Internet Hacking Base Exposed

Britain's, The Telegraph, reports that American computer analysts have traced more than 100 attacks on the government departments, companies and journalists to the site of the 12-story building about 40 minutes outside Shanghai's city center. A 60-page report by Mandiant, a computer security company said the headquarters of People's Liberation Army (PLA) Unit 61398 was located in the compound. The Daily Telegraph confirmed that a woman who questioned a reporter's purpose in visiting the area was a member of Unit 61398. Men in PLA uniforms guard the entrance of the compound. Large propaganda posters are pinned to walls around the base. Next door, a residential compound for military families greets visitors with a plaque reading: "Be faithful and loyal to the Party. Love the people. Dedicate yourself to the cause." There is no sign identifying the base by name but clear orders Read more

Environmentalist Frenzy Has Mediocre Showing

Environmental groups are finding out that mindlessly opposing jobs, domestic energy, and safety doesn't fire up mobs of people.  An estimated 35,000 showed up to a D. C. rally to oppose the popular Keystone Pipeline. Environmental groups are in search of a mission.  Their success in the 1970's benefited all Americans now like the BRAC Commission of the 1980's, they are in search of a mission because just safeguarding their successes doesn't pay the salaries and raise money well enough.  They have to find threats under every potential of progress.  That is a shame. Environmental groups could become innovative and help us to move to the next phase.  We need better energy sources.  I believe the key is to rally behind safe, clean, and effective storage of energy.  We need, for lack of a better term, the better battery.  We need massive energy storage.  This will make renewable Read more

Rubio to Visit Israel

While it is typical for the members of the Foreign Relations Commission to visit visit key spots on the globe, the Rubio visit to Israel and Jordan is seen as significant because he is visiting many of the key power brokers in the region.  The press is already promoting it as preparation for 2016. Senator Marco Rubio is no longer a rising star in the Republican Party.  He is a true star with staying power.  He was a very successful Speaker of the House and part of a team that made Florida a solid Republican state.   We all know his personal story, the son of immigrants that fled oppression, who worked hard to provide a better life for their children.  One of those children is now a U. S. Senator. More intriguing is the fact that Senator Rubio seems to be a true idea person in an age of sound bytes.  Instead of 3 issues and a bumper sticker, Rubio became an idea raiser in Florida Read more

Chili Cookoff Success, Aided Dover Fire Victims

  The Chili Cookoff went well, but you may read an interesting twist because some members of the press have contacted me regarding the statement below from the City.  We decided to make the victims disrupted by the fire that morning our guests. Most of those affected are temporarily homeless families.  My pastor (who is a partner in the Open Doors Ministry) and I got vans and gave transportation to those who needed it.  It is what we do normally, which is why I like our official charity.  It helps the people in our community who need it without bureaucracy and delay.  Now some of the people need clothes for adults and children, food, and other daily supplies.  If you can help email Opendoorsministry@live.com .    In follow up to the early morning fire at the Super Lodge Motel on Rt. 13 Dover, the fire remains under investigation with the City of Dover Fire Read more

Russian Bear Bombers Over Guam During State Of The Union

The Washington Free Beacon reports, two Russian Nuclear armed bombers circled the western Pacific island of Guam this last week. The Tu-95 Bear-H strategic bombers were equipped with nuclear-tipped cruise missiles and were followed by U.S. jets as they circled Guam on Feb. 12 local time, hours before Obama's state of the union address. Guam is one of the key strategic U.S. military bases under the Obama administration's new "pivot to Asia policy." As a result, it is a target of China and North Korea. Both have missiles capable of hitting the island, located about 1,700 miles east of the Philippines in the Mariana island chain. "It shows that the Russians, like the Chinese, are not just going to sit idly by and watch the United States 'pivots' or 'rebalances' its forces toward Asia," said former State Department security official Mark Groombridge. "One could argue the Russians were Read more

How important should testing be?

Christina School District and the state DOE are in a dispute over a test score based bonus program which could cost the district 2.3 million dollars.  It is an interesting dispute over how much testing should matter in teacher compensation. The biggest obstacle to testing in Delaware was that until recently, it was not meaningful.  To know if a teacher is effective, you have to test at the beginning of the year, middle, and end.  You cannot take a test every two or three years and blame the teacher who happen to inherit the students.  The state testing was only useful to measure system outcomes not as an accountability standard.  The current test is still being statistically normed and verified so basing evaluation on an instrument not statistically valid raises its own questions. How much should the test matter?  If it does matter, teachers who teach students to do well should Read more

Can The GOP Heal Or Is The Party Fracture Permanent

GOP party lines have never been more indistinguishable, both locally and nationally. The existing and overwhelming problem, aside from egos and personalities, is the definition of what a conservative is and should represent. The National as well as Delaware GOP has no sense of itself, yet is still spewing the rhetoric they think will win elections. Although passions for our Republic run high within the both factions of the party, it would seem that two main political philosophies have emerged and, on the surface they would seem to be diametrically opposed. Within conversations inside the GOP I have spoken to people I consider moderates, that believe they are true conservatives and the right-wingers should join the Libertarian Party or form their own party. On the other hand I know most everyone that would become involved in the Conservative Caucus, and they believe the "moderates within Read more

Gambling with Your Money

San Diego Democratic former Mayor Maureen O'Connor was a populist who gambled millions winning and losing a billion dollars including money obtained raiding her late husband's foundation.  She stole money from the Alzheimer's Association, City of Hope, San Diego Hospice and other charities.   Her personal story was complicated by the fact that grief of losing her husband and several close friends to death while she suffered from a hidden brain tumor clouded her judgement. What is interesting is that Democrats are gambling with our future everyday.  All over the country Democrats have given us a legacy of fiscal time bombs with unfunded liabilities from pensions to health care to Social Security funds.  They gambled instead of exercising sound planning for the future.  The real scandal is not this poor lady, but what has passed for public policy since the Great Society. But her Read more