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Archive for July, 2009

I Got Your Questions Right Here

The Berry Laker is kind enough to pass this on to his read­ers.  I shall also pass it on to mine, but offer sug­ges­tions as well.

U.S. Rep. Steve Kagen, D-Appleton, will hold a pub­lic lis­ten­ing ses­sion on Mon­day in Green Bay to dis­cuss the lat­est news about health-care reform.

The 8th Dis­trict con­gress­man will meet with con­stituents at 7 p.m. in the audi­to­rium of the Brown County Cen­tral Library, 515 Pine St.

Kagen said he wants to dis­cuss the lat­est health-care bill and hear input from the community.

Now, if you are going to this event, know the following:

  1. Kagen (and his press staff) will try to stack the deck with a large num­ber of his sup­port­ers.  These will include: Unions like the SEIU, AFSCME, AFL-CIO, and the like; the AARP, and oth­ers.  They will likely be in some sort of col­ored T-shirt.
  2. The TV Press from Green Bay will only be there if Kagen expects to con­trol the evening with his talk­ing points.  The one thing he hates is look­ing bad on TV.
  3. Finally, what Kagen tells you in that room will not be how he will act in DC.

So know­ing all this, here are some quick ques­tions — again if there are ques­tions — you might want to ask Rep. Kagen.

Ques­tion 1:  Con­gress­man Kagen, you’ve made it more than publicly-known that you do not have the same health insur­ance as Con­gress does until ‘all Amer­i­cans have the same health insur­ance their elected Rep­re­sen­ta­tives do.’  Dr. Kagen, does that mean either 1) You’ll be join­ing the efforts to make sure Mem­bers of Con­gress, their fam­i­lies, and staffs are also sub­ject to what is passed in this bill, or 2) You’ll be sign­ing up sep­a­rately if it were to become law.

Ques­tion 2:  Con­gress­man Kagen, where do you stand on the effort by Con­gress­man Bart Stu­pak up there in the U.P. on try­ing to make sure my tax dol­lars aren’t spent pay­ing for abor­tions?  Say what you want about a woman’s right to choose, but are we really going to have taxpayer-funding for it?

Ques­tion 3:  Con­gress­man Kagen, you’ve said pre­vi­ously the Stim­u­lus was a ‘jobs bill,’ that the “Cap and Trade” Bill was a ‘jobs bill, and now you say the health care reform bill is also a ‘jobs bill.’  Given the track record of lit­tle to no jobs from the pre­vi­ous two, why should we believe you this time?

Ques­tion 4:  Con­gress­man, you just had to re-appropriate an addi­tional $2 Bil­lion for the “Cash for Clunk­ers” pro­gram, is it at all pos­si­ble that no one on Capi­tol Hill has the price tag on this cor­rect, and we’re look­ing at debt as far as the eye can see for our kids and grand-kids?

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EVAH! Update">The Most Ethical Congress EVAH! Update

The AP reports House Democ­rats will not be launch­ing an inves­ti­ga­tion into the so-called “VIP mort­gages”  and the “Friends of Angelo” pro­gram from Coun­try­wide Home Loans.

After all, why would they want to inves­ti­gate themselves?

House Democ­rats have declined to sub­poena avail­able records that might reveal whether other mem­bers of Con­gress got dis­counted VIP mort­gages from sub­prime lender Coun­try­wide Finan­cial Corp. sim­i­lar to the sweet­heart deals given Demo­c­ra­tic Sens. Chris Dodd and Kent Conrad.Republicans say they are will­ing to risk that the records now held by Bank of Amer­ica may show that GOP law­mak­ers were also “friends of Angelo” who got pref­er­en­tial terms on per­sonal mort­gages at the behest of then-Countrywide CEO Angelo Mozilo.

Coun­try­wide, after los­ing bil­lions of dol­lars on defaulted sub­prime loans that trig­gered last year’s finan­cial cri­sis and the con­se­quent reces­sion, was taken over by Bank of Amer­ica a year ago.

Rep. Edol­phus Towns, D-N.Y., chair­man of the House Over­sight and Gov­ern­ment Reform Com­mit­tee, said he has other work to do on the causes of and fixes for the finan­cial cri­sis and will not inter­fere with other inves­ti­ga­tions of the VIP loans.

Towns’ com­mit­tee in recent months has focused on how much pres­sure the Fed­eral Reserve and for­mer Trea­sury Sec­re­tary Henry Paul­son put on Bank of Amer­ica to take over bro­ker­age giant Mer­rill Lynch, another finan­cial com­pany with losses in the bil­lions of dollars.

The senior Repub­li­can on Towns’ com­mit­tee, Cal­i­for­nia Rep. Dar­rell Issa, has been try­ing for months to get Towns to sub­poena Bank of Amer­ica for Countrywide’s records. He said in an inter­view with The Asso­ci­ated Press that he asked Towns again this week to issue the subpoena.

Any sub­poena must be issued by the committee’s chair­man. But because Democ­rats con­trol Con­gress, there are no Repub­li­can com­mit­tee chair­men. Speaker Nancy Pelosi said through a spokesman Thurs­day that nei­ther she nor her staff dis­cussed the sub­poena with Towns.

Daniel Frahm, a Bank of Amer­ica spokesman, said the bank is ready to turn over the Coun­try­wide VIP doc­u­ments if it receives a sub­poena. The bank’s lawyer sent Issa the same mes­sage in a June letter.

They have it packed and ready to go,” Issa said in the interview.

Peo­ple got tired of the GOP in 2006 because of “cor­rup­tion,” or so the exit polls said.

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Cartoon of the “Savings”


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Today’s Sign the End is Nigh

“Jon & Kate + 8″ will con­tinue says TLC, known exploiter of pets, chil­dren, midgets, and fat peo­ple.

Jon and Kate Gos­selin are over, but “Jon & Kate Plus 8″ con­tin­ues. TLC pres­i­dent Eileen O’Neill says the pop­u­lar real­ity show, which has been on hia­tus since the Gos­selins announced their split in June, returns Mon­day with new episodes that doc­u­ment the Gos­selins “sep­a­rately par­ent­ing” their eight children.

O’Neill says the iconic sofa from which the cou­ple addressed the cam­era is gone and replaced by “sep­a­rate inter­view chairs.” TLC will “con­tinue to cap­ture this family’s jour­ney in a respec­tive and sen­si­tive way,” she says.

O’Neill made her com­ments at a meet­ing of the Tele­vi­sion Crit­ics Association.

My guess, it’s a com­bi­na­tion of both Jon and Kate need­ing the cash the TV had given them and TLC telling the Gos­selins they were still under contract.

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“Cash for Clunkers” Suspended One Week In">Cash for Clunkers” Suspended One Week In

And these guys want to take on Health Care…

WASHINGTON — The gov­ern­ment sus­pended its $1 bil­lion ‘cash for clunk­ers’ pro­gram Thurs­day night amid wor­ries about slow pro­cess­ing of sales deals, dealer con­fu­sion — or even fears it may run out of cash months before it was due to expire.

Deal­ers loved the extra sales, but some were already get­ting cold feet about the deals because of the dif­fi­culty in pro­cess­ing them.

One dealer was going to sus­pend any­way. Another says he’s hav­ing to haul clunk­ers back to his lot that he already shipped to the junk­yard just to dis­able them. Oth­ers say deals are being held up by red tape.

Cash for clunk­ers is the best-known name for the big gov­ern­ment pro­gram that began this week to offer $3,500 or $4,500 incen­tives to own­ers of old gas guz­zling vehi­cles who trade them in on more fuel-efficient ones. It is intended to spur mori­bund auto sales, help­ing both deal­ers and manufacturers.

But rules gov­ern­ing the pro­gram totaled 135 pages. They required deal­ers to reg­is­ter and many started off the week just try­ing to get answers on a government-jammed web­site. The rules are “very con­fus­ing,” says Pete Greiner, who has a Ford deal­er­ship that bears his name in Casper, Wyo. “The admin­is­tra­tion of the pro­gram is extremely tough.”

As of 6:30 p.m. ET Thurs­day, the gov­ern­ment said it had paid out $221 mil­lion of the $1 bil­lion set aside for the pro­gram. The 22,000 par­tic­i­pat­ing deal­ers may have had trou­ble at the start of the week, but prob­lems were being resolved, said Rae Tyson, spokesman for the National High­way Trans­porta­tion Safety Admin­is­tra­tion only hours before the sus­pen­sion was announced. The sys­tem was pro­cess­ing 12,000 trans­ac­tions simul­ta­ne­ously Thursday.

But some deal­ers say demand has been so brisk, they fear the pro­gram could go broke in days or weeks, long before its Nov. 1 expiration.

One Honda and Gen­eral Motors dealer in Fort Worth says he has 50 clunker deals that are being held up by paper­work. “We’re going back to our sec­ond and third round with cus­tomers to have things signed,” says Will Churchill, owner of Frank Kent Motor. “They keep com­ing up with new forms to sign,” Churchill says.

While good intended (aren’t all lib­eral pro­grams), it’s clear the pro­gram is a “Lemon.”

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Organic Food No Healthier Says Study

Yet, the scam continues.

Espe­cially at Whole Foods.

Organic food has no nutri­tional or health ben­e­fits over ordi­nary food, accord­ing to a major study pub­lished Wednesday.

Researchers from the Lon­don School of Hygiene & Trop­i­cal Med­i­cine said con­sumers were pay­ing higher prices for organic food because of its per­ceived health ben­e­fits, cre­at­ing a global organic mar­ket worth an esti­mated $48 bil­lion in 2007.

A sys­tem­atic review of 162 sci­en­tific papers pub­lished in the sci­en­tific lit­er­a­ture over the last 50 years, how­ever, found there was no sig­nif­i­cant difference.

A small num­ber of dif­fer­ences in nutri­ent con­tent were found to exist between organ­i­cally and con­ven­tion­ally pro­duced food­stuffs, but these are unlikely to be of any pub­lic health rel­e­vance,” said Alan Dan­gour, one of the report’s authors.

Our review indi­cates that there is cur­rently no evi­dence to sup­port the selec­tion of organ­i­cally over con­ven­tion­ally pro­duced foods on the basis of nutri­tional superiority.”

Yet, even with nearly now 50 years of data, stud­ies, and so on, this will some­day get out of the House Agri­cul­ture Com­mit­tee.

House Res­o­lu­tion 458 — Express­ing the sense of the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives that the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment should encour­age organic farm­ing, gar­den­ing, local food pro­duc­tion, and farm­ers’ markets.

The resolution’s chief author is Nebraska Repub­li­can Jeff Forten­berry, who wrote it on May 19th of this year.  Here are the 8 co-sponosors, in alpha­bet­i­cal order.

Rep Blu­me­nauer, Earl [OR-3] — 6/26/2009
Rep Bor­dallo, Madeleine Z. [GU] — 6/18/2009
Rep Court­ney, Joe [CT-2] — 6/18/2009
Rep Edwards, Donna F. [MD-4] — 7/14/2009
Rep Gor­don, Bart [TN-6] — 6/26/2009
Rep Kagen, Steve [WI-8] — 5/19/2009
Rep Moran, James P. [VA-8] — 7/14/2009
Rep Terry, Lee [NE-2] — 7/14/2009

GU is the del­e­gate from Guam.

Wisconsin’s own Cong. Steve Kagen didn’t just sign on to the res­o­lu­tion, he signed on to it the day it was authored.

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Why Paul Ryan Rules

Any day I watch the com­plete and utter school­ing of The Nation’s Kat­rina Van­den Heuvel is a good day.

(Video via Sykes)

No won­der the Left both nation­ally and in Wis­con­sin wants to destroy Paul Ryan so badly (and are mak­ing them­selves look like utter fools while they do it).  He isn’t just a ris­ing star who they feel must be smoth­ered in his crib; he makes their ‘intel­lec­tual lead­ers’ look so small and insignificant.

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Cartoon of the Day


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ID Wrong Church">Lefty Blogs Go After Walker Pastor, ID Wrong Church

I love it when a good piece of oppo­si­tion research blows up in someone’s face.

Like say, this one:

Since Scott Walker can’t seem to tell us enough on his twit­ter page that he is off again to church and how deeply involved he is with their preach­ings, let’s apply the same stan­dard to him and his pas­tor at Under­wood Bap­tist Church in Wauwatosa.

Unlike Walker, his pas­tor and church opposed the 2006 ban on gay mar­riage. Walker’s pas­tor and church also opposed the Iraq War. And, while Walker opposes a women’s right to choose her own health care deci­sions, even in cases of rape, incest, and when the life or health of the mother is in dan­ger, Walker’s pas­tor is an Hon­orary Com­mit­tee mem­ber of the Wis­con­sin Reli­gious Coali­tion for Repro­duc­tive Choice.

We applaud his Pastor’s work for these pro­gres­sive causes but we have one ques­tion for Scott Walker.

Why don’t you prac­tice what your church is preaching?

We think Walker is guided more by pol­i­tics than his faith, so maybe it’s time that he come clean on that fact and stop using his reli­gion as some sort of polit­i­cal pander.

Scott, you look like a phony.

Har­ris Kane goes on to get the thumbs up from old Doyle-hack and Demo­c­ra­tic smear mer­chant Bill “Xoff” Christofferson.

Small prob­lem boys.  Walker doesn’t go to Under­wood Bap­tist Church, he goes to Mead­ow­brook, which is also in Wauwautosa.

Says so him­self on Twit­ter, since likely some­one said some­thing about the Har­ris Kane or Xoff posts to him later on in the day.

See for yourself.

Walker Twitter1Walker Twitter2God I love the lib­eral blogs of Wis­con­sin.  Noth­ing like a bunch of total bull for facts to build an attack meme on.  I mean, they are such stub­born things after all.

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Today’s Sign the End is Nigh!

The return of a clas­sic fea­ture of the blog which I hope to keep going strong with all of the zani­ness that is Amer­i­can Pop Culture.

Today — Buf­falo Gave Ter­rell Owens his own break­fast cereal.

Fol­low­ing his new real­ity show, Ter­rell Owens now has his own break­fast cereal. “T.O.‘s” will be avail­able soon at local Tops stores.

The cereal comes from the same com­pany that pro­duced Flu­tie Flakes, PLB Sports.

Like Flu­tie Flakes, T.O.‘s will come in a collector’s edi­tion box fea­tur­ing a photo of the foot­ball star. The maker’s web­site describes the cereal as “Low Fat Honey Nut Toasted Oats”.

Fans and col­lec­tors not from this area can buy the cerearl from the PLB website.

No word if, like Flu­tie Flakes, some pro­ceeds will go to charity.

Here’s the box cover.


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