North Archives - October 28, 2008
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By Robert Maynard
The problem with all this
is that the key factor from the standpoint of overall economic prosperity
is not who gets taxed, but the overall tax burden. In a 1976 article for
the Freeman entitled "The Power to Tax is the Power to Destroy", Dr. Clarence
Carson quotes from an opinion put forward by Chief Justice John Marshall
in the 1819 case McCulloch v. Maryland. "That the power to tax involves
the power to destroy; that the power to destroy may defeat and render useless
the power to create …".
Spreading the Wealth
By Mark Shepard
Like many Vermonters I was
disappointed in Rep. Peter Welch’s vote for taxpayers to bailout Wall Street
investors as well as provide cover for the politicians who forced unsound
lending rules on lending institutions and then refused to correct these
problems after being warned time and again. To make matters worse the bill
does absolutely nothing to fix the flaws that brought about the lending
Grey Lady’s Fall from Grace
By Martin Harris
print journalism is a tough business these days; even the world’s leading
financial daily, The Wall Street Journal, has suffered minor percentage
declines in readership, as former readers choose to go on line for their
information needs. But no major paper still publishing has suffered the
decline in fortune and stature experienced by the Grey Lady of 43rd
Street. A July 08 Real Clear Politics web article by Thomas Lifson, written
just before any of the present economic difficulties surfaced, describes
a 75% decline in earnings per share from the previous quarter, traceable,
he argues, to decreasing ad revenues (10%). Another, more persuasive, web
article on the Political Calculations blog-spot points to a 1/3 decline
in readership within the NYC market alone, from 1993 through 2007, and
goes on to argue that the paper’s "…long-standing leftist tilt…effectively
sabotages the newspaper’s ability to successfully reach…audience." I’d
add the obvious: that it has driven former readers away.
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Week’s Mail Bag
When we plant our gardens
in the spring, putting tiny seeds into the soil, our minds go forward to
seeing the first glimpse of the tiny plants poking through the soil, reaching
for the light of life. What an exciting time.
Where has our conscience
gone? Why have we grown so icy cold? Why have we taken it upon ourselves
to murder the unborn? They are so tiny, so innocent, so defenseless! They
did not ask to be conceived, yet are punished for the actions of what we
call ourselves—RESPONSIBLE ADULTS!!
Have we forgotten that we
are each created by God in His likeness and image? This means we each are
given a soul. Animals do not have souls, yet they are protected by law
to avoid extinction. This little person growing within needs our protection
also. Like the tiny plant in the soil, the womb is the tiny baby's place
to safely grow. It is a separate human being. Where is that baby's protection
by law? Their little hearts beat, they suck their thumbs, wiggle their
little hands and feet. A rock can't do that, so this tiny baby must have
life within the womb—how else would it wiggle its toes? Yet, our hardened
hearts tell them "no, we will destroy you."
Don't we teach our children
that it is wrong to bully another child? What on earth gives us the right
to do what we teach children not to do? What example are we setting?
Please remember that we will
all be judged one day. Yes—a judgment day by our creator. Has that so conveniently
slipped our minds?
For LIFE itself,
Louise Gagne, Graniteville
"Like a lot of my Democratic
colleagues I was too slow to appreciate the recklessness of Fannie and
Freddie. I defended their efforts to encourage affordable homeownership
when in retrospect I should have heeded the concerns raised by their regulator
in 2004. Frankly, I wish my Democratic colleagues would admit when it comes
to Fannie and Freddie, we were wrong." --U.S. Representative Artur
Davis of Alabama
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Weekly News Round-Up
Truth Of The Matter
Caledonia Record Editorial
October, 20, 2008
Sanders ran into an unexpected
point of view during his address to the students. Harold Kim, an L.I. student
from Asia, stood up and told Sanders that where he comes from, students
attend two schools each day, study long into the night and on the weekend
and work harder than American students. "Students in Asia aren't smarter
than us. They are working harder. You need to work hard."
Kim's observation is one
that we've never heard discussed by Sen, Sanders. We doubt he has ever,
in his political career, suggested Americans need to work harder to be
successful. It's refreshing to hear someone who has experienced the reality
of education in Asia and education in the United States identify a simple
solution to the problem of under performing students. Instead of repeating
the mantra that education can only be improved with more tax dollars, Kim
let Sanders and his fellow students know hard work counts.
Economist: Recession Will Get Worse
WCAX-TV - October 22, 2008
Vermont's unemployment rate
is the highest it has been in 15 years. And an economist at the University
of Vermont predicts things are only going to get worse.
Hints His Political Days are All But Numbered
By Susan Smallheer, Rutland
Herald, October 23, 2008
Shumlin, who ran unsuccessfully
for lieutenant governor in 2002, has long been mentioned as a candidate
for statewide office, and he said Wednesday he has no intention of becoming
a lifetime member of the Vermont Senate. He said his four years away from
Montpelier after he lost the 2002 lieutenant governor's job in a three-way
race taught him a valuable lesson.
"The experience being away
from Montpelier was a good one, you take the minutia of the job less seriously,"
Shumlin said. "I won't stay in the Senate for much longer," he said, declining
Rates Going Up
WCAX-TV - October 24, 2008
After several months of
budget adjustments and analysis Burlington Electric says it has no other
choice but to ask for a rate increase for its customers. On Monday the
company will ask the Burlington finance board to approve an increase up
to 5.9 percent.
Candlemaking A Green Job?
From VermontTiger.com, October
Yes, of course. Close
down Yankee and the green jobs will bloom like wildflowers in Spring.
But, one wonders, if those jobs are out there, waiting to blossom, what's
holding them back? Is it unfair competition from nuclear power?
This seems like a stretch. If green power is so self-evidently superior,
then a little competition from another energy source should not stunt its
growth and poison its roots. That argument recalls this
famous essay from the classics of economics.
AOT Predicts 20-Year Shortfall in Billions
By Gordon Dritschilo, Rutland
Herald, October 24, 2008
The Vermont Agency of Transportation
projects a 20-year revenue shortfall of $4 billion to $8 billion, depending
on inflation. To close that gap and take in enough to sustain current performance
levels, the agency's proposed new long-range transportation business plan
suggests measures such as increasing the gas tax to keep pace with inflation
and instituting road tolls.
Rep. Welch's Vote for
Bush Bailout Was Wrong!
From Mark Shepard for Congress,
October 27, 2008
Two-term Vermont State Senator
Mark Shepard from Bennington who ran for Congress in 2006 has put his name
forward as a write-in option for Congress this year. Shepard, 48,
was raised on a Hartland Strawberry farm. Since leaving elected politics,
Shepard has been focusing his energies on his engineering business and
had no intention of running for Congress this year. However, after
Representative Peter Welch, who is essentially running unopposed, decided
to support President Bush's federal bailout, Shepard expressed the need
for Vermonters to have another option. In a recent letter to the
editor, Shepard advocated that "even if Rep. Welch was the only name on
the ballet, Vermonters should not bail him out with a vote on Nov. 4."
Peter Welch's vote for the
$850 billion bailout was wrong for a number of reasons:
1. It is wrong
to continually expect taxpayers to bailout failures. This is becoming
a bad habit in America and where does it stop?
2. On his first
bailout bill Rep. Welch voted no and made a good case for why taxpayers
should not be saddled with a $700 billion bailout. Then when
the amount was increased to $850 billion he switched his vote and voted
for the increased bailout. He followed that vote up by sending out
an intellectually insulting email letter outlining his rationale for now
supporting the even larger bailout. He presented no good case for
voting for the second bailout bill, most especially after he had voted
against the smaller bailout bill. At best it was a vote out of fear
- "do something even if it's wrong." There were better ideas, and
as a member of the party in control of Congress he should be in a position
to work with his majority for real solutions.
3. Perhaps most disturbing
is such a vote switch likely would not have happened if he had a real contest
for reelection. It seems clear that he followed his Washington party's
leadership instead of the voice of his constituents. Having no viable
opponent, Rep. Welch knew he could get away with this vote against taxpayers.
Vermonters were taken granted and that is wrong.
Shepard said, "My opposition
to throwing taxpayer money at problems rather than working toward real
solutions and my desire that Vermonters have a means of expressing their
disappointment or even outrage at this action by Representative Welch has
compelled me to put my name forward."
Shepard said, "Clearly time
is short and many Vermonters have already voted, but at a minimum I want
to give Vermonters a means to give Representative Welch a wakeup call and
let him know we expect more from our only member to Congress. Just
write-in Mark Shepard, Bennington and send Peter Welch a clear message
that we do not appreciate him redistributing our wages to those who failed
to perform their duties on Wall Street and Washington."
While there are other options
on the ballot, none are known well throughout the state and none are running
a serious campaign, hence most Vermonters will not consider voting for
any of these. Shepard hopes that his having served in the Vermont
Senate and his run for Congress in 2006 will help provide a viable place
for Vermonters to send a clear message to Peter Welch, President Bush and
Washington DC that we taxpayers cannot continually bailout irresponsibility.
Not only is it wrong, it is not sustainable and weakens our nation.
Many Vermonters are showing
support for Shepard by putting up their 2006 campaign signs and spreading
the word that there is an option to Welch. Vermonters can learn more
about Mark Shepard at his 2006 website, www.shepardforcongress.org.
Please feel free to contact
Mark Shepard at 249-7886 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You
may also contact Bill Stafford of Colchester, who managed Shepard's campaign
in 2006 at 862-0858 or email@example.com.
(Note: Since this run was
not in Senator Shepard's plans, his immediate work situation may not permit
him to be as readily available as he would like. He may be working at a
customer site. Senator Shepard apologizes for this inconvenience and asks
that you leave a message and he will do his best to get back to all press
Senator Shepard's Letter to the Editor: Welch's spreading the wealth
# # #
Global War on Terrorism
At The Tipping Point In 2008
By Christopher G. Adamo,
GOPUSA, October 23, 2008
Barack Obama is perhaps the
farthest left of a leftist political party that has minimized every symbol
of U.S. achievement against the Islamists (such as the triumphal Iraqi
elections or President Bush's spectacular landing on the Aircraft Carrier
Abraham Lincoln), while magnifying to obscene levels every misstep throughout
the process (Abu Ghraib and the phony episodes of flushed Korans immediately
come to mind).
In these dangerous times,
"ignorance" might only be "bliss" very briefly. America cannot bow out
of the Terror War, no matter how "eloquently" a President Obama may think
he can do so. America cannot befriend its mortal enemies. It will either
defeat them or be ever after subject to their attacks, and ultimately,
to their twisted ideology.
The cauldron of Islamic militancy
seemed dormant until President Jimmy Carter's nihilistic stupidity breathed
life into it during the 1970s. Now Iran is the center of Islamic terrorism
and insurgency. Soon, the world may be facing the terrible presence of
a nuclear Iran.
candidate Joe Biden predicted a horrendous international "test" for Obama,
should he be elected. He has since been effectively muzzled by the Obama
camp, since such alarming truths pose great risks to the Democrat ticket.
But Biden was right, more than he knows.
By Daniel Pipes, American
Conservative Union, October 22, 2008
These ambiguous and contradictory
percentages lead to no clear, specific count of Islamists. Out of a quantitative
mish-mash, I suggested just three
days after 9/11 that some 10-15 percent of Muslims are determined Islamists.
Subsequent evidence generally confirmed that estimate and suggested, if
anything, that the actual numbers might be higher.
Negatively, 10-15 percent
suggests that Islamists number about 150 million out of a billion plus
Muslims – more than all the fascists and communists who ever lived. Positively,
it implies that most Muslims can be swayed against Islamist totalitarianism.
By Rick Moran, American
Thinker, October 23, 2008
Strata of the Stratosphere has been reporting on this story for months.
Evidently, some of the Tribes in Pakistan started their own Iraqi-style
"Awakening" by going after al-Qaeda in the NWFP. Now the government appears
ready to assist them by supplying
them with arms:
OPEC War against American Energy Independence (Part Two)
By Dr. Walid Phares, Family
What adds to the inquiry
into whether OPEC contributed to our economic destabilization are the many
indicators that strategic political motives have appeared to be behind
the pricing maneuvers. Over a period of half a decade, many voices heard
on the region’s airwaves have intimated that the US economy will be made
to pay for what America’s leadership is doing. Commentators on several
outlets funded by oil companies, including on al Jazeera, underlined that
as long as average citizens in the United States (and eventually in the
West) don’t feel financial pain, the war on terror and spreading of Democracy
won’t be stopped.
over arrest of Iranian American student in Tehran
By Borzou Daragahi and Larry
Gordon, Los Angeles Times, October 24, 2008
Human rights advocates say
Esha Momeni, a Cal State Northridge student, was in Iran researching her
master's thesis. She was stopped Oct. 15, allegedly for a traffic violation,
and then detained. ...
Momeni, 28, was reportedly
being held in the notorious Section 209 of Tehran's Evin Prison, though
officials have not announced any charges. Amnesty International and others
worry that she might be subjected to torture.
By Donald Devine, American
Conservative Union, October 22, 2008
While Gen. David Petraeus
deserves full credit for stabilizing the military situation in Iraq and
his promotion to regional commander for doing so, his deputy Gen. Odierno
has been in charge of daily battlefield operations and has borne the burden
of the fight, to which Petraeus himself is witness. Bringing the Iraq war
to a successful conclusion could not be in better hands than the man who
has just been promoted as its new commander.
# # #
Our Way Into Oblivion
By Harris R. Sherline GOPUSA
October 20, 2008
America's politicians are
rapidly spending our way into oblivion. Almost a trillion dollars for the
Bailout package, including 25 billion for the auto industry, 150 billion
for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), an 85 billion loan
to insurance giant, A.I.G., along with millions of dollars of "pork" for
Hollywood producers, stockcar race track owners, Caribbean rum producers,
Alaskan fishermen, and who knows what else. Remember, this bill was about
450 pages of text, and since it was handed to Congress only about one day
before it was approved, it's obvious that no one read it or really knew
what was buried in it.
In addition, two bills sponsored
by Barack Obama are currently working their way through Congress: the Jubilee
Act (S. 2166) would cancel as much as another $75 billion worth of Third
World Debt and the Global Poverty Act (S. 2433), at an estimated cost of
All this adds up to about
two trillion dollars, enough to pay Social Security benefits to the entire
senior population for more than four-and-a-half years. We are told the
money comes from borrowing, which amounts to putting more currency into
Oil For America
By Alan Caruba, American
Conservative Union, October 22, 2008
So Democrats decided to allow
the quarter-century ban on drilling for oil off the Atlantic and Pacific
coasts to expire? That’s not the same as lifting the ban. Moreover, House
Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md) is on record saying that, if the Democrats
retain control of Congress, restoring the ban "will be a top priority for
discussion next year."
By Robert George, Public
Discourse, October 14, 2008
Sen. Barack Obama's views
on life issues ranging from abortion to embryonic stem cell research mark
him as not merely a pro-choice politician, but rather as the most extreme
pro-abortion candidate to have ever run on a major party ticket.
Bombshell Redistribution of Wealth Audio Uncovered
Sen. Barack Obama's views
on spreading the wealth - in his own words.
Right on Government
By Scott Rasmussen, American
Conservative Union, October 22, 2008
In his first inaugural address,
President Ronald Reagan delivered a line succinctly capturing the sentiment
that elected him: "Government is not the solution to our problem; government
is the problem." A generation later, that attitude still resonates with
a solid majority of Americans. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone
survey finds that 59% of voters agree with Reagan, and just 28% disagree.
Bias Playing an Unnecessarily Large Role Against GOP
By Kristen Wall, The Daily
Cardinal, October 23, 2008
It has long been claimed
that the media has a liberal bias, but the majority of the media has never
been so in the tank for any democrat as they are for U.S. Sen. Barack Obama,
D.-Ill. On Oct. 21, the Kansas City Star editorial page came out with a
column calling U.S. Sen. John McCain, R.-Ariz., and Alaska Governor Sarah
Palin racist for calling Obama a socialist. Apparently, "J. Edgar Hoover,
director of the FBI from 1924 to 1972, used the term liberally to describe
African Americans who spent their lives fighting for equality," at least
according to Lewis Duguid, a columnist for the Kansas City Star. This is
an absurd statement, even by the liberal media’s standards.
By Timothy Carney, American
Conservative Union, October 22, 2008
Who knew Wall Street shared
the economic views of steel workers, domestic manufacturers, and buggy-whip
makers when the automobile was invented? Just like those industries threatened
by market realities and a changing economic landscape, Wall Street is calling
on Congress to intervene in order to preserve the status quo. I guess we
only call it protectionism when it’s men in hardhats who are at risk of
losing jobs. When it’s men in pinstriped suits worried that their industry
might dry up, we call it "stabilization."
Election Choice: Taxes
difference between candidates is the widest it's been in over two decades
The Wall Street Journal, October 25, 2008
it comes to taxes, the difference between Barack Obama and John McCain
is arguably as wide as it's been in a presidential race since Ronald Reagan
and Walter Mondale battled in 1984. Sen. Obama is proposing to raise taxes
more than any recent candidate, while Sen. McCain wants to cut them substantially.
the Last Honest Reporter Please Turn On the Lights?
Orson Scott Card, The Rhinoceros Times
job, as journalists, is to tell the truth. That's what you claim
you do, when you accept people's money to buy or subscribe to your paper.
But right now, you are consenting to or actively promoting a big fat lie
— that the housing crisis should somehow be blamed on Bush, McCain, and
the Republicans. You have trained the American people to blame everything
bad — even bad weather — on Bush, and they are responding as you have taught
you had any personal honor, each reporter and editor would be insisting
on telling the truth — even if it hurts the election chances of your favorite
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