Even though I give him a hard time about his political views, I have to say that his really does have a heart of gold. Thank you, Chris for the package you sent. We are all going to enjoy it. I haven't played the original Zelda in years. And it couldn't have come on a better day. It's storming and the kids are restless. It looks like we are going to be spending the day with video games.
P.S. Call mom
Saturday, April 30, 2005
Even though I give him a hard time about his political views, I have to say that his really does have a heart of gold. Thank you, Chris for the package you sent. We are all going to enjoy it. I haven't played the original Zelda in years. And it couldn't have come on a better day. It's storming and the kids are restless. It looks like we are going to be spending the day with video games.
Posted by Dana at 9:30 AM
Friday, April 29, 2005
It seems that they do have a plan for Social Security. Jonathan over at GOP Bloggers set off today on what seemed to be a difficult task - discover the Democrats' solution for Social Security. He began at what seemed to be logical starting point - Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid's office. Despite being the one place that should know about any plans or solutions the Democrats have, Jonathan stuck out. The staffer Jonathan talked had no clue about any Democrat Social Security plan. Of course, she definitely knew that Reid was opposed to the President's plan.
Undaunted, Jonathan next tried Sen. Charles Schumer's office. And lo and behold the Democrats DO have a plan to fix Social Security. So what is it you ask? Come on, its the Democrats we're talking about here. Do you really need to ask how they would fix Social Security? Let's say it together - Raise taxes. Oh yeah, and cut benefits.
She pointed me to the Diamond-Orszag Plan, which, as explained to me, mimics the 1983 Greenspan Commission.
Essentially, the Diamond-Orszag plan, and, if that is the basis for the Democratic alternative, the Democrats' Social Security plan is a combination of tax increases and benefit cuts.
So, why don't the Democrats go and lay their plan out for the American public? Probably because they don't want to reinforce what the American public already knows about them - they are the party of higher taxes.
Posted by Dana at 6:29 PM
I am going to recycle this post. I was reminded of the subject when I saw Pat's post at Brainster's Blog this morning.
April 5, 2005: My brother sent me this article entitled "Report Tallies Hidden Costs of Human Assault on Nature" and asked me what I thought. Well, this was my answer.
I think of this the same way I think of global warming. It is a bunch of bunk. I would love to know how many of these "scientists" were crying "global cooling" 30 years ago? Also, what ever happened to their former "cause celebre" - the hole in the ozone layer.
I had a terrific geology professor at Nicholls who debunked much of the environmental myths. For one, the earth is far more harmful to itself than we are (look at the destruction and damage caused by one earthquake or tsunami or volcano). If these scientists would have been alive millions of years ago, they would have blamed the creation of the Sahara Desert and the extinction of the dinosaurs on humans, too. Yes, there is still extinction, but it was not started by humans and it won't end with humans, either
I do not believe in raping the land, but I don't believe in this pseudoscience of hysteria. In the hierarchy of the ecosystem, we are at the top of the food chain. We did not put ourselves there. God did. We should be responsible, yes, but not to the point of putting the environment above all else. Also remember that people who make money off the land, make money off the land. They are not going to put themselves out of business. I'm sure that there are some who lack foresight, but that is the case in every industry (and environmentalism is an industry, too). Here in the US, there are many protected forest lands (I think the amount is 2 acres per person. It could actually be more). Because of technology, we are able to do a lot for our environment and it is getting better daily. Keeping the public scared ensures them (the environmentalist) that they will continue to have a job.
Posted by Dana at 12:48 PM
For my entire life, I knew that my dad, a Vietnam veteran from the Navy, despised Jane Fonda. When I was younger, I didn't really understand. I couldn't understand why he refused to watch this seemingly sweet actress in the movie "9 to 5" or why he was not pleased that my P.E. teacher had us exercise to Fonda's aerobic tape (these were the only exposure that I had to her).
Well, dad, I haven't really told you this but I get it. I understand the deep-seated animosity held by those men and women who so bravely fought on the side of democracy and freedom while the Ms. Fonda betrayed them to the enemy. And even though she tried, almost successfully, to reinvent herself to a new generation in the 80s, she never changed.
This is even proven more with the release of her new book and book tour. NRO has an article about her supposed apology.
You may have heard that Jane Fonda apologized to Vietnam veterans in her current book. That's incorrect. She expressed "regret" for one photograph, but remains proud of her Radio Hanoi broadcasts, her efforts to achieve a Communist victory, and her attacks on American servicemen as war criminals. She never uses the word "apology.
I'm with you now dad. I will never support anything Hanoi Jane does especially knowing that she holds in contempt everything that I hold dear. All those times I rolled my eyes dad, I guess I WAS listening. And I can honestly say, "You were right."
Posted by Dana at 10:46 AM
Last night, after the President's press conference, I made this prediction:
I predict that we will see a liberal spin against the President's proposal that will result in an increase of social security benefits to lower income and the lowering of benefits to those that are less dependent on the system. The MSM will all of a sudden "discover" what the government calls "wealthy" and cry foul.
Well, I was pleasantly surprised when I visited Michelle Malkin's blog and saw this post titled "Look Who's Defending the Rich Now ". It looks like my prediction is coming true. Ok, so maybe this was a no-brainer.
Update: Here is another post from Ms. Malkin
Posted by Dana at 10:09 AM
Thursday, April 28, 2005
Yahoo news has this story:
GAINESVILLE, Ga. - Former Sen. Zell Miller fell ill while giving a speech Thursday night and was taken to a hospital emergency room. His wife said he had flu-like symptoms.
Miller, 73, was in stable condition at Northeast Georgia Medical Center, according to nursing supervisor Tammy Harbison. She said she did not know what made Miller ill.
We wish Sen. Miller a quick and speedy recovery. Our prayers go out to him and his family.
Hat Tip: Blogs for Bush
Posted by Dana at 10:02 PM
I thought that Pres. Bush did very well tonight getting his message out in regards to Social Security reform. But I have a prediction.
I predict that we will see a liberal spin against the President's proposal that will result in an increase of social security benefits to lower income and the lowering of benefits to those that are less dependent on the system. The MSM will all of a sudden "discover" what the government calls "wealthy" and cry foul. They might even compare a modern-day "wealthy" income with the equivalent 1950s income and project how that would effect those current seniors. Something like this:
An income of $50,000 today is the equivalent of an annual income of $10,000 in 1950. If President Bush's plan were in effect in 1950, today's seniors would have $XXX less money in income from Social Security than they do under the current Social Security plan.
We will see if I'm correct. If I am correct, I can pat myself on the back. If not, I guess you will be reading this in the Bonfire of the Vanities.
Posted by Dana at 8:13 PM
No, not THAT carnival time. I wasn't drunk enough to have forgotten Mardi Gras. It's IMAO's first ever Carnival of Comedy. Considering how funny FrankJ is, I can only assume the links posted will be very entertaining too. Here's the link. Enjoy!
Posted by Dana at 1:48 PM
Wednesday, April 27, 2005
I am not in a very good mood today, so forgive me if I come across as angry. I just need to vent.
I am sick and tired of the liberal mentality. I am frustrated that liberals think they are so intellectually superior to us "dolts" in the red states. OPEN YOUR EYES. Stop buying into this farce that the Democrats are selling that only those that are "intellectually superior" can possibly understand how the "real" world works.
Why is it that every liberal slanted article is unquestionably, undeniably fact, but anything that is unbiased and balanced is labeled "right-wing" and automatically discredited.
What really gets me is that liberals claim that they are thinking. And maybe they are, but only about how things would work in an ideal world. And no matter how much education people have, there will never be an ideal world. All of you "enlightened" people could go off to some deserted island and start your own version of utopia and guess what - you would be no better off. In fact, you would probably be worse. Because you don't understand people. You don't understand why people do what they do.
Three more things:
(1) Democrats ARE partisan. To think otherwise is sheer stupidity. They are not the party of the people or of compromise.
(2) Republicans are in the majority. And unlike Clinton, a majority actually elected Pres. Bush.
(3) Liberals must have a very short memory. Those Dems in the Senate who are fighting so hard for the right to filibuster are the same ones that fought against that idea in the late 1990s.
I think that I could go on for a while, but I just don't have enough blood pressure medicine.
Oh yeah, I was just reminded of something else about liberals that burns me up. When confronted with a problem, they use the excuse "It's too complicated" or "It's a complex problem with no ONE solution" as the reason for doing nothing! Do they actually have any solutions? Nadda, zero, zilch. But they sure like to tell us how ours are "too simple" and won't work. Shut up then and come up with some of your own. Sorry, but I guess that would require thought!
Posted by Dana at 3:31 PM
For what? To end the partisan bickering over judicial nominees. We, the American people, deserve better from our elected officials. This childish behavior must end. President Bush's judicial nominees deserve a simple yes or no vote from the Senate. Do the Democrats seriously want to shut down the government just to prove that they can thwart Republicans. Or is it because they are angry, pouty little children who don't want to accept that they are not in charge anymore. If we are a republican form of government, which we are, then Congress is to represent what their constituents want. Face it, whether you like it or not, Republicans ARE the majority because a majority of Americans elected them.
So what can you do? Contact your local Senator and tell them to end the judicial filibuster and tell them to vote yes or no on President Bush's judicial nominees.
Posted by Dana at 10:34 AM
Tuesday, April 26, 2005
Kevin over at Wizbang has a funny post about a woman convicted of theft who is faced with an interesting dilemma: spend 90 days in jail or donate her Packers' season tickets to charity.
This got me thinking. Would this, could this happen in New Orleans? Not hardly. With the way the Saints have played in recent seasons, I think the question would be: spend 90 days in jail or receive season tickets. And of course, we all know what the answer would be - 90 days in jail. The suffering would be much shorter.
Posted by Dana at 4:57 PM
If you have read my posts in the past, you know that my brother and I don't exactly see eye to eye on many issues, one of which is Social Security. He likes to use other countries that have private pension accounts as examples of why we shouldn't privatize at all. He claims that they are disastrous. Well, Chris, this article might shed a different light on it.
You may suspect that Pablo has prospered only because he's a sophisticated investor, but he simply put his money into one of the most popular mutual funds. He has more money in it than most Chileans because his salary is above average, but lower-paid workers who contributed to that fund for the same period of time would be in relatively good shape, too, because their projected pension would amount to more than 90 percent of their salaries.
By contrast, Social Security replaces less than 60 percent of your salary - and that's only if you were a low-income worker. Typical recipients get back less than half of their salaries.
Of course, I know my brother, he will find something wrong with this. And the article does cover some arguments.
The biggest problem in Chile is that many workers don't contribute regularly to their pensions because they're unemployed or working off the books. That's a common situation in the developing world, no matter what the pension system is. But if you contribute for at least 20 years, Chile guarantees you a minimum pension that, relative to the median salary, is actually more generous than the median Social Security check.
Still, you may argue, Chileans may someday long for a system like Social Security if the stock market crashes and takes their pensions down with it. The relative risks of the Chilean and American systems are a question for another column. But I can tell you that Pablo is an economist who appreciates the risks of stocks and has no doubt about where he wants to keep putting his money.
I can get Chris to agree that Social Security is heading for bankruptcy. But to be against any personal accounts is short-sighted and elitist. We have got to demand that people take some responsibility in their retirements. Gone are the days when we can sit back and be assured that the government will take care of us after we retire. We all must take an active role in our planning for old age. For me, that means supporting Pres. Bush in his bid to start fixing Social Security. But, I also know that I won't depend on that money as my sole source of support. Especially because there are many, many people in this country that agree with my brother.
Hat tip: Lifelike Pundits
Posted by Dana at 1:23 PM
It looks like Frist is ready to play hard ball instead of rolling over and playing dead. I'm glad to see that the Dems' compromise was evidence that they were bluffing.
But Frist, in a rare news conference conducted on the Senate floor, said he would not accept any deal that keeps his Republican majority from confirming judicial nominees that have been approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee.
"Are we going to step back from that principle? The answer to that is no," Frist said.
Maybe, after so many years, the fact that Republicans are in the majority is finally sinking in. I hope this trend continues.
Hat tip: Blogs for Bush
Posted by Dana at 11:47 AM
I think that I am going to give up all fast food. First the finger in the Wendy's chili (I know the woman was arrested for false accusations, but the thought still turns my stomach) and now this.
A man is suing a fast-food restaurant operator for more than $50,000, claiming he found a slice of skin on his chicken sandwich.
Scheiding said he realized something wasn't right when he bit into the sandwich on June 18 and found a piece of flesh about three-fourths of an inch long.
Miami County (search) health investigators talked to the restaurant manager, who had a bandage on his right thumb and wore a latex glove, according to a health district report. The manager said he sliced skin from the thumb while shredding lettuce, and sanitized the area but didn't throw away the bin of lettuce, the report said. Scheiding's sandwich contained lettuce.
Fast food just doesn't hold the same appeal for me anymore. I wonder why?
Posted by Dana at 9:45 AM
Monday, April 25, 2005
Dirty Harry's rights have been violated.
I just went to a vegan restaurant and they wouldn't serve me a hamburger! I went to a hippie bookstore and they didn't carry "Unfit For Command!" I went to a Satanic tattoo parlor and they wouldn't sell me a Bible! I went to a head shop with a large selection of bumper stickers and they wouldn't sell me one with, "Just Say No" written on it!
We should demand that these stores sell what we want to buy there. Haven't they heard about my first amendment rights! How dare they claim to be private companies with a target audience. That's discrimination.
To borrow a quote: Give 'em hell, Harry;)
Posted by Dana at 7:53 PM
We know from the media that starving isn't bad. In fact, it's euphoric. So what does this protestor want to accomplish by going on a hunger strike? Based on what we were told during the Terri Schaivo nightmare, protesting something by going on a hunger strike is like protesting something by spending the day at a spa. Silly liberal.
Hat tip: Polipundit
Posted by Dana at 3:35 PM
I can't believe that these environmentalists expect to be taken seriously. They are now advocating a "diaper-free" society. I know, I know. We have all heard about the perils of using disposible diapers. But now they are even against cloth diapers. What do they want us parents to do?
"There is a way to have a baby and NOT use diapers," says one website advocating diaperless babies. Parents are urged to get in tune with their infant's body signals and hold babies over toilets, buckets and shrubbery or any other convenient receptacle when nature calls.
Yeah, I can see that happening. And what happens at night? Or when my daughter decides she wants to eat the two pounds of grapes and the olives that the grandparents put on her plate? I can just see me telling her preschool to hold her over a shrub if she looks like she needs to do her business.
The green movement already has declared war on the modern flush toilet, declaring it an "environmental disaster," and has instead pushed waterless "dry" toilets as an earth-friendly solution.
How much of a slave to the environment do we have to be before these environmentalist are happy? I'm afraid that they won't be happy until we are all living in mud huts,
get around with our horses (no, forgot about horses' rights) walking everywhere, while our raw sewage runs in the street dirt paths.
Wait, there are places like that and they are being lauded for their progressive environmetal policies. Well, I think that I have a wonderful solution that would be a win-win situation for everyone. They should just move to those forward-thinking countries.
Hat tip: GOP bloggers
Posted by Dana at 1:43 PM
I don't understand the mindset of these "peace" activists. I think that they are really cowards. How else can you explain this. They are scared to take on the real enemies of this country, but yet, when faced with a petite woman who disagrees with them - well, time to fight!
Hat tip: Michelle Malkin
Posted by Dana at 10:46 AM
Saturday, April 23, 2005
They hate children. How else can you explain there protecting pedophiles. Oh, they claim they are trying to "protect the children's privacy" but if you look at all of Planned Parenthoods' stances, you can't deny it: they hate children.
Hat tip: Ankle Biting Pundits
Posted by Dana at 9:57 AM
Friday, April 22, 2005
I just received this email Gene Mills, Executive Director of Louisiana Family Forum:
I write this afternoon with an urgent message. It is imperative that you (yes, you) call Senator Mary Landrieu's offices right away to encourage her to support an up-or-down vote in the U.S. Senate for the president's judicial nominees. Her numbers are at the bottom of this email.
We've been informed that the opposition is calling her right now and the numbers are FIVE to ONE against us!
Why is this so important? Answer this question for your family: Do we want Christian judges on the bench? If so, it's time for us to act.
Background: Senate Democrats have been preventing qualified (primarily Christian) judges from being voted on by the full Senate. This is sheer bullying. They don't want judges who share your family's values on the federal courts--because they know the importance that federal court decisions hold today.
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., will force a Senate showdown before Congress breaks on May 27 for its Memorial Day recess. Now that Texas judge Priscilla Owen and California judge Janice Rogers Brown have been approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist has two nominees to push forward in his battle against Democratic filibusters that conservatives hope their allies will rally around.
It now takes 60 votes to shut down a filibuster in the Senate, which has 55 Republicans, 44 Democrats and one independent. That means 41 senators (including Mary Landrieu) can stall a nominee.
Please call her offices today!
New Orleans – 504-589.2427
Baton Rouge – 225-389.0395
Shreveport – 318-676.3085
Lake Charles – 337-436.6650
Washington, D.C. – 202-224-5824
For your family and mine,Gene
I've contacted her. Have you?
Posted by Dana at 9:45 PM
Hollywood is getting more and more warped in their thinking. It is a total lack of understanding the real world.
A new MTV series features Hollywood celebrities praising the developing world's primitive lifestyles as earth-friendly -- despite those poor nations' high infant mortality rates and short life expectancies.
This article just confirms my feeling of most of Hollywood. There was a time when I actually wanted work "in the industry." That was until I worked on an HBO series. I have never met such self-absorbed, vain, egotistical people. And that attitude did not stop at the celebrities. To quote the Asst. Accountant, "We're spoiled and we expect to be treated that way."
Anyway, I digress.
Actress Drew Barrymore, who reportedly earns $15 million a film, told MTV viewers in one episode that after spending time in a primitive, electricity-free Chilean village, "I aspire to be like them more."
Posted by Dana at 9:05 AM
Thursday, April 21, 2005
Well, it looks like Delay won't be able to clear his name. Why? Because the Democrats won't convene the ethics panel.
Democrats yesterday rejected an offer by House Republicans to begin an investigation into ethics accusations against Majority Leader Tom DeLay.
The offer was made by Republicans on the House ethics committee who wanted, in exchange, an agreement from Democrats to convene the ethics panel today and accept at least a revised version of the new rules for the committee.
What are the changes that Republicans made?
The House, on a vote of 220 to 195, enacted a change that would effectively dismiss a complaint in the event of a deadlock in the ethics committee, which is equally divided between Democrats and Republicans. Its approval came after a retreat by Republicans on Monday on other proposed ethics revisions
"This change restores the presumption of innocence in our process," said Representative David Dreier of California, chairman of the Rules Committee.
Under the system instituted in 1997, if no action is taken on a complaint within 45 days, a preliminary investigation is started. The new approach would require an affirmative vote by the panel to begin an investigation, meaning at least one committee member belonging to the same party as the lawmaker at the center of the complaint would have to join in backing an inquiry or the complaint would die. (emphasis added)
The Republicans are more than willing to open this preliminary investigation.
"If these changes had been in place in the last Congress, no ethics complaints would have seen the light of day," said Representative Louise M. Slaughter of New York, senior Democrat on the Rules Committee.
Well, that's obviously not true. At least not for the Republicans who want to clear Delay's name and know that that will only happen if the ethics panel convenes. An argument could be made that the Democrats are the ones who are protecting their own, Rep. Jim McDermott.
Mr. DeLay also accused Democrats of protecting Rep. Jim McDermott, Washington Democrat, who awaits an investigation by the House ethics panel after losing a federal lawsuit that accused him of passing along an illegally taped 1997 telephone conversation. In an October ruling on that suit, U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Hogan declared that Mr. McDermott's "willful and knowing misconduct rises to the level of malice in this case." "One of [Democrats'] best friends, Jim McDermott, is being investigated, and they don't want him to be kicked out of Congress," Mr. DeLay said last week. "I mean, this guy has been found guilty -- guilty by a court of law -- and they don't want an ethics committee."
This should really come as no surprise. If Delay is found not guilty of any misconduct, then the Dems would have to find another whipping boy. Think of all the time and effort it will take to rewrite all those speeches and talking points with the name of a new Democrat "demon du jour."
Posted by Dana at 3:43 PM
How many times have we heard from our leftist friends that Republicans are "too partisan"? Well, according to Nancy Pelosi's spokeswoman's statement, we just can't win.
“What [Republicans are] trying to do is distract. They’re choosing to pass legislation that is bipartisan.” Jennifer Crider
Hat tip: Polipundit
Posted by Dana at 2:21 PM
Today there is an issue that affects us here in Louisiana. It is the possible confirmation of Judge Priscilla Owens to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals here in New Orleans. I say possible because the Democrats in the Senate are threatening to filibuster this judicial appointment again. They claim she is "too conservative."
But Democrats say they blocked Owen, a Texas Supreme Court justice and a friend of the president's, because her opinions and rulings are overly influenced by her pro-business and anti-abortion personal beliefs. (So only judges that are anti-business and pro-abortion will be allowed by the Democrats to be judges?)
So, what can we do? Contact Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La). Email, phone, fax, send a telegram, smoke signal, anything. But tell her to vote a simple yes or no on Judge Priscilla Owens.
Hat tip: Blogs for Bush
Posted by Dana at 1:33 PM
Isn't this the same guy who went to churches to campaign and said that he would not neglect his Catholic religion if he became President. Maybe what scares him is people who religious convictions actually play a role in their lives and the decisions they make. He knew that he didn't mean it, but people who do scare him.
Posted by Dana at 1:26 PM
Wednesday, April 20, 2005
I will tell you that my kids should be very glad that I have a sense of humor. Why? Because of incidents like this:
We spent the last weekend in Mobile visiting my dad and stepmom. On Saturday night, after I brushed my teeth, I had the very distict taste of soap in my mouth. Knowing my two year old loves to play with soap and water, I assumed she got soap on my toothbrush.
The next morning, at breakfast, I asked Georgie if she put soap on my toothbrush. Of course, she denied it. I figured no harm done, so I let the subject drop and just washed my toothbrush very well.
Fast forward to Monday evening. I'm cooking dinner when Jacob, my 5-year-old comes into the kitchen and says, "Mommy, I have to tell you something."
Me: What is it, Jacob?
Jacob: I put soap on your toothbrush.
Jacob: I needed to clean my airplane.
Me: (very cautiously) What airplane?
Jacob: You know, the one we got at the garage sale.
I was laughing so hard that I couldn't even scold him. But I did get a new toothbrush.
Posted by Dana at 11:15 AM
Did you miss last night's episode of The Amazing Race? Check out Brainster, Dummocrats and/or Viking Pundit to get caught up.
I will say that after last night, I hope that Uchenna and Joyce win. If they do, then Joyce can get some really nice wigs (if she chooses, although se really did look pretty. She has a good face for it).
Posted by Dana at 10:56 AM
I'm sitting here watching "Good Morning America" and Charlie Gibson is talking to a Cardinal from America. They are discussing the new pope.
Gibson then starts to quote polls:
76% support the use of birth control
69%, said priests should be allowed to marry
64%, said they want women in the priesthood
Since when has the church ever relied on opinion polls? The MSM is treating the Catholic Church like they treat the Constitution - as a "living, breathing" entity. It just proves their total lack of understanding about the religious beliefs.
Posted by Dana at 7:14 AM
Tuesday, April 19, 2005
I am a huge fan of "The Amazing Race." This season's show is especially fun to watch because of Rob and Amber of "Survivor" fame. I watched all three Survivor seasons with Rob and Amber and was very excited when they got engaged during the Survivor All-Star finale (Although, I have to admit that until Survivor All-Star I couldn't stand Rob). It is fun to watch them outsmart the teams on TAR.
Well, Rob and Amber have tied the knot. It is even being made into a cheesy two-hour special. I don't think that I will watch that, though. (Well, maybe my curiousity will get the better of me).
Posted by Dana at 4:37 PM
The American Spectator has this article by Jeremy Lott about why priest should not be allowed to marry. It is very insightful.
I grew up Catholic and attended Catholic schools. During high school, I had a great religion teacher that taught us the history of the Catholic church doctrine including the reason why the Catholic church decided to make priests celibate. It is true that early church leaders were able to marry and have families. At that time, it was common practice that the eldest son would "inherit" the father's profession. Being a church leader at that time was a very powerful position in society and it was being passed down from father to son. As you can imagine, there were some very unscrupulous men becoming religious leaders. The Catholic Church realized something had to be done to stop this practice. Thus it became that the church demanded that priests be celibate.
The practice has continued because it has allowed the priest to be "married" to his congregation. He has no other obligations besides the church and parishioners.
Posted by Dana at 3:49 PM
A number of blogs (here, here and here) are talking about the recent vote to get rid of the death tax.
Most liberals complain that this unfairly benefits the ultra rich. The Dems' strategy on defeating the repeal of the death tax was to conjure up images of Paris Hilton, the poster child for spoiled rich kid, in the minds of the average Americans. What did she ever do to deserve or earn the millions of dollars that she stands to inherit, right?
Most people affected by the estate tax got their money the old-fashioned way - they earned it. The estate tax puts an undue burden on families. It taxes not just "money in the bank" but all assets. This includes farms, land, businesses - anything of value.
My husband's family was one of the original families in Maitland, Florida. They had orange groves. For years, they tilled the land, packed the oranges and sent them around the state for sale. As family members passed on, more and more land had to be sold in order to pay the taxes on the estate. Unfortunately for the family, Maitland was becoming a popular little town and property values were climbing. Today, there is a subdivision where the family land was (at least it was named after the family), a bank where the family packing plant was and absolutely nothing remains of the family orange grove. But at least the government got its money!
If you need more of an argument against the estate tax, this is a great article.
While looking for more information about this, I stumbled onto this very scary "discussion."
Proposal: Why should we have Inheritance? Why should anyone in America simply be born to unequal advantage? Children of the wealthy already get plenty of perks: education, travel, introductions to influential people and networks, etc. Why should they get more for simply 'winning' some 'Birth Lottery'?Instead, I propose the assets of an estate (when both spouses are dead) be put in a national pool. When a person reaches their majority (or some specified age) they are given their fair share from the pool along with all other eligible recipients for that year. It becomes their 'Grubstake' - something to get them started, for school or to start a business or buy some property....
If you really think that this is an ideal way to live, I have a first class ticket to Cuba. Warning: it would be the last bit of luxury you would experience.
Posted by Dana at 2:58 PM
I think that I will laugh. It is actually quite humorous. Dean is taking his campaign to more Republican strongholds. And, as he has in the past, Dean, as well as the reporter writing this article, continues to make a ton of "funnies" (as my 2 year old says).
"The first rule in winning is to show up - show up, say who you are, say what you stand for," [Dean] declared.
If it seems the blunt-talking doctor and former Vermont governor hasn't had much to say lately, that's because he has been keeping his head low and spending a lot of time in Republican strongholds like Kansas, Mississippi and Collier County.
Two months after his election as national party boss, he is starting to speak up.
Hasn't had much to say?!? Are you kidding? Some of his best quotes have come to us during the last two months. Oh, yeah, that's right. This is an article from the MSM - they haven't reported anything Dean has been saying over the last two months.
He was back in the national news again this weekend after vowing to make sure voters in 2006 and 2008 won't forget how Republican leaders intervened in the case of Terri Schiavo.
"There is a deep scar on the American psyche," he said. "This is a great tragedy for the American people and I think the behavior of the governor (Jeb Bush) and the president and the senator (Mel Martinez) is something that will long be remembered."
Well, this is the pot calling the kettle black.
He is also determined to help combat Republican suggestions that Democrats are out the mainstream, and intends to develop a simple, overriding definition of Democrat.
Uh, is Howard "I hate Republicans" Dean, the one that should be doing this? He is the Big Head of the extremist fringe of the Dems.
hat tip: Lucianne.com
Posted by Dana at 9:15 AM
Monday, April 18, 2005
...companies are choosing other locations over New Orleans. Even the most optimistic person cannot deny the fact that New Orleans is dying. Officials need to make New Orleans more competitive.
A liner service has decided to shift its operations from New Orleans to the Port of Pascagoula.
Posted by Dana at 12:44 PM
I was watching ABC coverage of the conclave (well, actually it was on as I was checking the internet) and I couldn't believe what I heard. I only wish I knew who said it. The talking heads were naming the cardinals as they entered the conclave and one of them said something like this:
What our viewers will notice is that, among these 115 cardinals, who are wearing what looks like women's garb, that there are no women. That is something the next pope is going to have to address.
I was disgusted by that. How disrespectful for one and pompous for another.
Then I read this article. I think it explains the above comment.
The night before the Catholic Cardinals were to begin their conclave to choose a new Pope, the U.S. broadcast network evening newscasts painted the role of women as the most important issue and gave a platform to left-wing church activist Joan Chittister. "The future of the church is now in the hands of 115 men. Some Catholic women find that offensive," ABC's David Wright asserted Sunday night in leading into a Chittister soundbite. Wright proceeded to showcase a woman upset that her unborn daughter cannot become a priest, before concluding: "Men and women may be equal in the eyes of God, but many Catholics say in the eyes of the church, there's still a long way to go." Wright gave a soundbite to a church defender, but not CBS's John Roberts who sandwiched two denunciation from Chittister around touting how "a new CBS News poll finds the majority of Catholics think the next Pope should admit women into the priesthood, let priests marry, and allow birth control." Plus, "52 percent of American Catholics think the church is out of touch."
Why do the Catholics need to have women priests? Is it just to satisfy feminists? Get over yourself! This is not a secular business that you can storm and run roughshod over in order to get your way. The Catholic religion does not revolve around making feminists happy.
Maybe they should read the Purpose Driven Life. The first sentence in particular:
"It's not about you."
Posted by Dana at 11:16 AM
"Women earn only 76 cents on the male dollar." It has been the whining mantra of feminists for years. Now, the Independent Women's Forum has debunked this myth with the article "Gender Wage Gap Is Feminist Fiction." NOW, Stop whining!
Equal pay for equal work has been enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Act since it was made law in 1972. The Equal Pay Act of 1963 and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 also ban sex-based wage discrimination. So it seems pretty remarkable that the wage gap is so wide and pervasive even today. Attorneys should be having a field day with class-action lawsuits. But they are not. Could it be that even the legal establishment is complicit in this glaringly obvious patriarchal conspiracy?
A study of the gender wage gap conducted by economist June O' Neill, former director of the Congressional Budget Office, found that women earn 98 percent of what men do when controlled for experience, education, and number of years on the job.
Posted by Dana at 11:03 AM
I don't think so. I realize this is anecdotal, but last week, the HGTV show "House Hunters" went "international." If you are not familiar with "House Hunters," the show follows a home buyer on the quest for a new house. The international version showed the housing market in Barcelona, Florence, Paris, London and Montreal. One thing these shows told me is that I would never want to have to buy a house overseas - not that I would want to anyway. It was unbelievable. For example, in Paris, to get a mortgage, you have to also get a physical. So if we had money but my husband was sick, we couldn't get a mortgage. In Florence, mortgages are rare. Most people don't buy a house until they can pay cash. In London, people can change the price of the house until you actually close on it. You get the picture.
Today, over at Lifelike Pundits, there is this post, which is further evidence that Europe is no better than America. I am tired of Europe being held up as an inspiration for America. Our ancestors certainly didn't want us to be like Europe. If it was so great, they would have stayed.
Posted by Dana at 9:25 AM
...not so fast.
Ever since Hillary won the Senate seat in New York, my husband Jim has been very vocal in his fear of her becoming President. I'll admit, the fear is there for me as well, but then I will see things like this and suddenly, the day seems a little bit brighter, I hear the birds singing, everyone seems a lot nicer... you get the picture. I sure hope this trend continues.
Thanks Jackson's Junction for making my day better.
Jim, I hope this makes you feel better, too.
Posted by Dana at 9:11 AM
Sunday, April 17, 2005
UPDATE: According to the Times Picayune, this bill was passed and signed by President Bush on Friday, just in time. Good job, Rep. Jindal!
Rep. Bobby Jindal and Sen. David Vitter are working overtime trying to get an emergency bill co-sponsored by Jindal and Florida Rep. Mark Foley through the Senate. The bill would stop a recent IRS ruling that taxes some Federal Emergency Management Agency grants.
Under the new ruling, homeowners in areas declared federal disaster zones receive the grant tax free. However, residents in mitigated areas that are not declared federal disasters are forced to include the grant as part of their income. This process inflates personal income by thousands of dollars, placing homeowners in tax brackets they can't afford, Vitter and Jindal said.
Palm Lake resident Barbara DaBella received more than $100,000 in FEMA grants after six separate floods wrecked her house. "We were devastated when we learned about the taxes," DaBella said. "No one knew the cost, otherwise we would have figured out some other way to pay."
The bill was passed unanimously in the House. So, what is the hold up in the Senate?
Sen. Max Baucus, ranking Democrat on the Committee on Finance, has not given his approval for the legislation to go to the Senate floor for a vote, stalling the time sensitive process.
"If Max Bauchus just gets out the way we can have the bill ready Monday and have the president sign it by Tuesday, three days before April 15," Vitter said.
Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu, Florida Sen. Bill Nelson and California Sen. Dianne Feinstein have been asked to mediate in the process to push the bill through by next week's deadline, Vitter said.
If there is such bipartisan support, which there seems to be, what is stopping this? Let's hope that Jindal and Vitter are supportive. If anyone is from Montana, please contact Baucus and ask him to support H.R. 387.
Posted by Dana at 7:45 AM
Friday, April 15, 2005
I'm going to be leaving my laptop for a couple of days as I head over to Mobile with the family to visit my dad. I will try to check in at least once, but who knows what will happen. I'm already anticipating withdrawls, especially at night. How will I get to sleep? I guess my husband is right - I am addicted. Do they have programs for that?
Posted by Dana at 4:30 PM
and anger and boy, do I agree! Read this post over at Jackson's Junction and you'll know what I'm talking about. Here's a small sample:
The only argument the pansies in the Republican party are using to oppose the nuclear option is a fear that if Democrats ever regain control of the Senate that they'll use the same rule against us. That is simply the stupidest damn cop-out, girly-ass, nancy-boy, argument ever muttered by a retard.
Posted by Dana at 3:53 PM
Ya just have to laugh at PETA. Their stunts are so ridiculous. It's even funnier when their protests are thwarted. I wish I could have been there to point and laugh. A deeeeeep belly laugh. A roll on the ground laugh. That would have been fun.
Hat tip: Jackson's Junction (BTW quickly becoming my favorite blog)
Posted by Dana at 3:30 PM
According to The Hill, it seems that Republicans are becoming concerned that they are losing in the court of public opinion regarding their "nuclear option." They are only NOW realizing that.
Senate Republican leaders were due to meet last night amid rising concern that they are being beaten on the “nuclear option” by Sen. Harry Reid’s (D-Nev.) public-relations war room.
The GOP’s talks follow a meeting last week in which aides warned Bob Stevenson, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist’s (R-Tenn.) communications director, that something needs to be done to win back lost ground, a participant said.
“I think there’s a realization that this particular [Democratic] effort has to be countered and they’re in full-scale attack mode,” a GOP aide said, adding, “I think that people know that we’ve got a serious problem here.
Gee, ya think.
Soon after becoming leader, Reid hired several communication aides and created a rapid-response team akin to the one Bill Clinton pioneered during his triumphant 1992 presidential campaign.
Lord knows, they have the time on their hands to strategize about how to fight Republicans. They aren't coming up with their own plans. Imagine if they spent as much time and energy trying to actually come up with solutions to the problems facing this nation.
He (Stevenson) did not say whether Republicans would establish their own such team, noting that “having a war room inside the Capitol is unprecedented.” Nevertheless, he indicated that more aides would be drafted to the fight over the nuclear option.
It doesn't matter if a war room is "unprecedented." If it is needed to combat Harry Reid's war room, then obviously IT IS NEEDED.
Another GOP aide said: “There’s a general sense in the rank and file that we are a little in the hole and that Democrats have been more aggressive on messaging, that we’ve kind of gone dark. Democrats have gotten a head start and defined the issue ahead of us.”
Are they just realizing this?
The turnaround has flummoxed Senate Republicans and conservatives. They say it is incredible that Democrats who have “undone 200-plus years of precedent” by filibustering nominees have managed to portray Republicans as “overreaching.” Republicans say eliminating the filibuster of nominees would merely restore Senate tradition.“They turned it around,” the aide said, and “one can suggest that it’s because of our lack of organized countermessaging.”
The Democrats have figured out how to play on people's lack of knowledge of history and their emotions. They have the MSM on their side, too, and use it to full advantage. Republicans have got to realize that just having truth on their sides is NOT going to win an argument. They cannot make assumptions on the public's knowledge on the history of the Senate, government or Constitution (thanks to our school system - but that is another post altogether).
Sen. Trent Lottt (R-Miss.), one of a group of Senate conservatives that first began pushing the nuclear option — which Republicans prefer to call the constitutional option — said he has urged Frist to set up his own war room.“We need full-time people working on this,” said Lott.
What?!? They NEED to spend taxpayer money to do this! This is far more important than funding research on snail darters or any of the other frivolous projects that the Republicans don't seem to mind spending taxpayer money on. If the Republicans don't win this, there will be ramifactions that will radiate for generations.
I could comment throughout the entire article, but I need to lower my blood pressure. You can read the whole article here. I have said it before and I will say it again: Republican Senators, grow a backbone!
Blogs for Bush has this post about Frist pushing for a ban on judicial filibusters.
Posted by Dana at 8:43 AM
Thursday, April 14, 2005
Polipundit has this about the bipartisan effort to protect bloggers' freedom of speech. Nice to know that people remember some of the Constitution.
Update: If you are curious as to what has been going on with the FEC regarding the internet, visit Michelle Malkin's blog. She links to previous posts about the history of it.
Posted by Dana at 9:04 PM
April 12: Why haven't we heard anything on TV about the Fannie Mae scandal that have been mounting since last year? This could be much worse than the Enron fiasco. Dan Gainor with the New York Post has this to say.
Charles Gasparino, a reporter for Newsweek who has covered the story, gave his theory on CNN's "Newsnight" last December. Gasparino called Fannie Mae a "politically correct company," and added, "I mean, they do all the things that, let's face it, liberal journalists like, like put home mortgages out there for poor people. And so right now, beating up on Fannie Mae is kind of politically incorrect."
Whatever the reason, the network news is AWOL on an enormous story that threatens one of the largest companies in the nation — a company with implied guarantees of support from the federal government and our tax dollars. In other words, if Fannie Mae has problems, not only does it hurt the mortgage market, but all of us might have to share the bill.
I'm sure we will be posting more about this.
Hat tip: Michelle Malkin
Update: The story is starting gain attention in the blogosphere. See today's post over at GOP Bloggers.
Posted by Dana at 3:42 PM
Wednesday, April 13, 2005
Time for them to wake up and smell the coffee. It seems that everyone is fed up with New Orleans and the school system (see here and here).
Legislative Auditor Steve Theriot told lawmakers Wednesday that the system's finances were in such disarray that the system's deficit from last year may grow to $19 million and he won't recommend the state Bond Commission approve the short-term borrowing to bail the system out.
Lawmakers have expressed continuing frustration with the school system, and Rep. Warren Triche, D-Thibodaux, said he was tired of hearing excuses about the poor state of the New Orleans schools -- which get about $300 million of its $577 million budget from the state.
"You've got too many damn skunks out there taking money, plain and simple. You've been basically overrun with incompetence for years now," Triche said. (emphasis added)
Maybe Amato's resignation will be the straw that broke the camel's back. I think that the Orleans Parish school board needs a complete overhaul. Maybe they should fire everyone and start over.
Posted by Dana at 9:35 PM
Came across this article while reading the Orlando Sentinel and had to chuckle.
A tornado that ripped through Geoffrey Crook's home in February didn't just tear away his roof. Authorities say it exposed his elaborate marijuana-growing operation.
Maybe you should be extra careful if your name is Crook. Just a thought.
Posted by Dana at 9:08 PM
I still can't believe that Bill Clinton was our president for 8 years and I am convinced that many of the nation's current problems can be traced directly to Clinton's actions and inactions. Of course, until 9/11 I had no idea how devistating his presidency was.
AN INTERESTING QUESTION: This question was raised on a Philly radio call-in show. Without casting stones, it is a legitimate question. There are two men, both extremely wealthy. One develops relatively cheap software and gives billions of dollars to charity. The other sponsors terrorism. That being the case, why was it that the Clinton administration spent more money chasing down Bill Gates over the past eight years than Osama bin Laden?
This post over at Gribbit's Word lays it all out.
Posted by Dana at 8:51 PM
I just received this email:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
LOUISIANA FAMILY FORUM
April 13, 2005
Contact: Gene Mills, Executive Director, 225-344-8533
Press Release/Media Advisory
Louisiana Loves Life!
LFF Response to Reinstatement of Choose Life Plates
Baton Rouge—Louisiana Family Forum, a member of the Choose Life Council, is pleased to congratulate the Louisiana Attorney General's Office in their successful defense of the "Choose Life" license plate as well of all of the other specialty plates that were enjoined by the federal district court over a year ago.
“We applaud the 5th Circuit’s ruling in this case,” said Gene Mills, LFF’s executive director. “This is a great victory for our state and for parents desiring to adopt children in Louisiana.”
Organizations receiving monies under the Choose Life law will use the funds to provide for the material needs of expectant mothers considering adoption for their preborn child, including clothing, housing, medical care, food, utilities, and transportation. They will also use the monies to meet the needs of infants awaiting placement with adoptive parents and for counseling, and training.
Louisiana Family Forum’s legal counsel has asked the court to immediately allow the re-issuance of the specialty plates by the Louisiana Department of Motor Vehicles.
The Court based its decision of the Tax Injunction Act which prohibits federal courts from enjoining state taxes. The Court agreed with the State's argument that these specialty plates are revenue raising tools approved by the Legislature, and therefore could not be enjoined by a federal judge. The court also required Planned Parenthood to return fee awards that they had received through the lower court ruling.
“We encourage everyone to go out and get their Choose Life plate as soon as possible,” suggested Gene Mills. “Louisiana loves life and this is a great way to support that assertion!”
Citizens may apply for specialty plates by calling 1-877-DMV-LINE or by visiting their local Motor Vehicles’ Office.
I had a "Choose Life" license plate in Florida and really looking forward to driving around with a Louisiana "Choose Life" plate. You can read more here.
Posted by Dana at 7:45 PM
I absolutely agree with everything in this post at Jackson's Junction. I was amazed that people didn't think that Congress should have acted in the Terry Schiavo case. Their argument was that Congress shouldn't have interfered. But isn't it Congresses responsibility to protect our LIFE, liberty and pursuit of happiness. They acted to protect an innocent woman's life. They had every right to do so and I pray that, given the need to do so, that they would repeat their "interference".
Posted by Dana at 5:02 PM
This is absolutely ridiculous! This is NOT art, I don't care how you look at it. I hope this was not funded in any way with my tax money. I know art is subjective, but come on.
Organizers of a politically charged art exhibit at Columbia College's Glass Curtain Gallery thought their show might draw controversy.
But they didn't expect two U.S. Secret Service agents would be among the show's first visitors
Hernandez said any government involvement could come close to trampling First Amendment rights.
"It frightens me ... as an artist and curator. Now we're being watched," Hernandez said. "It's a new world. It's a Big Brother world. I think it's frightening for any artist who wants to do edgy art.
What the he**? You create stamps with a picture of the President with a gun to his head and you are surprised that the Secret Services seeks you out?
My brother is an artist and this is always a hot topic with us. According to him, the government should support this so that people will be exposed to different types of art. He claims it will make us a more well-rounded nation. Ha!
Hat tip: Right Wing News
Posted by Dana at 4:15 PM
Liberal Democrats seem to be at a loss as to why mainstream America doesn't respond to them the way they (liberals) think they should. This could be why. They just don't get it. We, the so-called "religious right" don't want to get rid of non-believers. I think that they are projecting their own fanatical wishes onto us. That is, they want to get rid of all who oppose them. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately, depending on who's side your on), the extremists in the party are getting louder and louder and further away from the mainstream.
Now that I think about it, why don't these people who are anti-Christianity fight just as hard against a religion that really does want to get rid of all non-believers - Muslims?
Hat tip: Little Green Footballs
Posted by Dana at 3:48 PM
If you have read my blog before, you know that my brother Chris and I are on opposite ends of the political spectrum. He and I don't agree about social security (obviously) and, while he accuses me of getting most of my information from conservative sites, he gets his information from places like NPR and the like. I do have to give him credit for going to factcheck.org for some of his information. So, Chris, this and this is for you (and for my readers, too, of course).
Hat tip: Blogs for Bush
Posted by Dana at 2:12 PM
Tuesday, April 12, 2005
Woman: "Honey, do you want to go to the mall?"
Man: "That's funny. I was just getting ready to ask you the same thing."
Actually, it's kind of disturbing. I can't imagine shopping with my kids and having to explain this.
Posted by Dana at 8:46 PM
Whether people want to believe it or not, the decision to have an abortion can be devastating. It is never to be taken with a cavalier attitude. Many girls and women who decide to abort their babies end up regretting it and then have to live with tremendous guilt knowing that they chose to extinguish the life of their own child.
Bordlee, executive director for the Bioethics Defense Fund, cited a 2003 medical study that said women who have abortions are three to six times more likely to commit suicide than women who haven't had abortions
A.G. Crowe, State Representative from Slidell, wants to make sure that these girls and women have professional counseling before deciding to kill their babies.
Crowe said women are required to have professional counseling when they give up a baby for adoption, and he doesn't want women to have abortions without weighing any potential long-term psychological consequences of that decision.
"They could make the wrong decision that could haunt them for life," he said Tuesday.
Read the whole article here.
Posted by Dana at 8:17 PM
To be honest, I don't know how I feel about this. At times, I thought he would be good for the Orleans Parish schools, but then at other times, I wasn't so sure. Orleans Parish schools desperately need help and I hope they find someone to do the job. The problem is that there are so many problems on so many levels that even the best superintendent is not going to be able to fix them alone. Everyone needs to put aside the egos, the personal agenda and partisanship so that the kids left in public school can actually get a good education.
Posted by Dana at 6:45 PM
A few days ago, I ranted that the Republicans need to grow a spine and fight. This has now extended to defending Tom Delay, GOP Majority Leader in the House of Representatives. Again, STAND UP AND FIGHT BACK! Well, thank goodness there are some that continually show their backbones. Ben Stein, economist, lawyer, presidential speech writer, actor and, oh yeah, game show host, has written a great piece regarding Tom Delay.
This is a man with more moral decency in his little finger than his detractors have in their whole bodies.
More Republicans need to defend Delay.
hat tip: Kitty Litter
Posted by Dana at 12:15 PM
Monday, April 11, 2005
I got a big kick out of this over at Lifelike Pundits. I guess it means that I watch waaaaaaaay too much Dora. I'm addicted (I'm even tempted to watch it while my kids are in school). I think I was more excited when her mommy had the babies than my kids. OK, I'll sheepishly admit that I even shed a tear or two.
As much as I love Dora, I am really beginning to enjoy The Backyardigans even more. The music is so catchy.
Glad to know that I'm not the only one who watches too much Dora. ...way too much.
Posted by Dana at 8:54 PM
Governor Blanco wants to raise the tax on cigarettes to pay for teacher pay raises, see here and here. Her reasoning behind it, though, is faulty, at best.
"We are looking at cigarettes first because it generates more money and it will stop people from smoking," said Blanco.
Where to begin, where to begin? For one, there might not even be a need to raise any taxes. Second, why would you raise taxes on an item that you hope to one day not receive income from? Are the teachers going to take a pay cut when people quit smoking? Of course, we all know what would happen if the number of smokers declined. The governor would look to raise taxes somewhere else.
Posted by Dana at 4:24 PM
Dummocrats have announced the addition of a new guest contributor and she lives in New Orleans.
Laura hails from New Orleans, so she also adds some much-needed Southern appeal to the site. Please welcome Laura to the site and we're sure you'll enjoy her contribution, which will be posted later this morning.
I know I look forward to reading your posts.
Posted by Dana at 9:53 AM
Sunday, April 10, 2005
Here, in Louisiana, the teachers' pay ranks 45th on the national scale. Everyone agrees that our teachers need a pay raise. The problem is how to pay for that increase. Governor Blanco has estimated that she needs to generate about 70 million dollars to give the teachers a $1000/year raise. She has floated a few ideas all of which are some kind of increase in taxes.
WELL, NOT SO FAST! There may be a way to raise more than 180 million dollars a year without raising anyone's taxes. "How?", you ask. By spending 65% of the educational budget on... (drumroll, please) THE CLASSROOM.
The idea, which will face its first referendum in Arizona, is to require that 65 percent of every school district's education operational budget be spent on classroom instruction. On, that is, teachers and pupils, not bureaucracy.
Nationally, 61.5 percent of education operational budgets reach the classrooms. Why make a fuss about 3.5 percent? Because it amounts to $13 billion. Only four states (Utah, Tennessee, New York, Maine) spend at least 65 percent of their budgets in classrooms. Fifteen states spend less than 60 percent. The worst jurisdiction -- Washington, D.C., of course -- spends less than 50 percent.
Under the 65 percent rule, Arizona, which spends 56.8 percent in classrooms, could use its $451 million transfer to classrooms to buy 1.5 million computers or to hire 11,275 teachers. California (61.7 percent) could use its $1.5 billion transfer to buy 5 million computers or to hire 37,500 teachers. Illinois (59.5 percent) would transfer $906 million to classrooms (3 million computers or 22,650 new teachers). To see how much money would flow into your state's classrooms, go to firstclasseducation.org.
I would encourage you to contact the Governor's office and provide the link to the above article. She needs to be made aware that there are other ways of improving our education instead of raising taxes.
Thank you Redstate.org for this valuable and informative post!
Posted by Dana at 1:49 PM
Saturday, April 09, 2005
As you might have guessed, my brother and I are on the opposite ends of the political spectrum. Eventhough he lives in Rhode Island, we often email each other back and forth about different issues. Today's issue was Social Security. He wrote:
I am in a little disagreement with you about the importance of social security. I beleive it is necessary and provides oppurtunities for people who otherwise would not have them. and I don't think i necessarily agree with the use of personal accounts. I would like to fix it before we change it. But either way that article cleared some misunderstands up for me.
This way my reply:
You said it "provides opportunities for peoplewho otherwise would not have them." You only get social security if you have worked. If you worked and made the money to give to the government, then you would have the money to put away and invest or put into a savings account or something. At one time, SS was a good thing, but it has outlived its usefulness. No one should rely on SS for their retirement. It is only for people too lazy to take care of their own retirement. Why am I responsible for that? SS is headed for bankruptcy and Bush is trying to fix it with personal accounts of only 6%. It is a small step in the right direction. The GOVERNMENT does not need to provide opportunities to people. It needs to protect the ability of people to take advantage of opportunities. I hope that you are taking care of your own retirement because SS will not be able to support you when you are ready to retire if it is available at all.
Chris, I love you, but you're wrong. Come back to a red state.
Posted by Dana at 9:19 AM
Friday, April 08, 2005
Get a backbone! I am sick and tired of them backing down from a fight. What more do you want from the American public? We have given you our votes, again and again. Do we need to hold you hand or push you into the ring? Fight already! Stop rolling over. We are the majority. Act like it. Do you think the Democrats would give up the fight? Of course not! And neither should we!
Posted by Dana at 2:17 PM
I don't know how anyone could watch the Pope's funeral and not believe in God. To see the world's spiritual and religious leaders passing the sign of peace was an amazing thing to witness. And what an wonderous sound that must have filled Rome when the crowd of at least 300,000 said the Lord's Prayer together in all their different languages. This past Sunday, my pastor had said that God is still in the business of providing evidence of His existence. For me, the Pope's funeral is another example.
Posted by Dana at 9:57 AM
Mayor Nagin announced today his plans for New Orleans for the Legislative session. Some are applaudable, such as tax incentives for "video game makers, a rubber manufacturing plant and more medical research;" however, other ideas just prove that Nagin and others are more interested in how things look rather than reality.
Nagin has proposed a light rail system from the airport to downtown! Why waste the money? We don't have the tourist base that they are obviously under the illusion that we have. Having moved from Orlando last year, I can definitely see the difference between a flourishing tourist economy and that of New Orleans. If not built for tourists, then who do they think will use it? The locals? Are there enough locals going from downtown to the airport to make this an efficient use of money that New Orleans is constantly complaining that it doesn't have?
Nagin also wants to give tax breaks for the motion picture industry who use local musicians or local music in their productions. The movie industry is the worst industry to court and both Ray Nagin and Governor Kathleen Blanco are guilty of it. While living in Orlando, I saw first hand how the movie industry will usually only go "on location" when it is mo$t advantageous for them. Orlando had to actually pay production crews to come and film there. For a while, they, too, wanted to be "Hollywood South" until they realized the cost to the city far exceeded any revenue to be gained.
Louisiana is now the sucker du jour for the movie industry. Production crews usually bring in their own people, with the exception of the lower paying jobs like production assistants (gophers). Oh, and don't forget about the paid scenery, I mean extras. But even if they do hire locals such as teamsters and lighting crews, these are SHORT-TERM jobs. They provide no stable industry. They are literally here today and gone tomorrow.
Do I think we should have no movie industry here? No. I'm sure there are many people in New Orleans and Louisiana who rely on incoming production for their livlihoods; however, I think it the utmost stupidity for state and local leaders to tout the movie industry as a great economical boom for the state. We need to attract industry that will give Louisiana and New Orleans steady and reliable revenue.
Posted by Dana at 9:14 AM
Monday, April 04, 2005
Since its founding, New Orleans has been an active port city (sometimes, more active than others). It is also a tourist destination. What better industry to come to New Orleans than the growing cruise ship industry, right? Well, maybe not. In typical New Orleans idiocy, Entergy is having trouble realizing the fact that their power lines over the Mississippi River are preventing the safe passage of large cruise ships. Because of their lack of foresight, New Orleans is being overlooked as a viable port for larger ships.
Cruise companies have told the port that New Orleans is on the short list for consideration for the newest and largest ships, but they wouldn't risk deploying a ship to New Orleans if the lines remained, port officials said.
It was discovered that Entergy filed an application for a new permit to leave the power lines in place over the river. J. Wayne Leonard, Entergy's chief executive, said that he didn't realize there was any hurry to get the lines down.
"Issuance of this permit [to keep the lines in place] will inhibit the growth of the maritime industry in the Port of New Orleans . . . which will in turn affect the economic growth of New Orleans and the river region," Gary LaGrange, chief executive of the Port of New Orleans wrote in a letter to the corps.... "I don't think [Entergy] fully understood how a number of cruise companies would want to cross us off their list. It's not a matter of addressing the issues when the ships come," Vitter said.
Entergy is New Orleans only Fortune 500 company. If New Orleans wants to recover economically, they are going to need everyone working together. The mayor should be all over this situation. Thank God that David Vitter is concerned about New Orleans. Upon reading in the newspaper about the application being filed, he immediately started working on this.
The whole article is here.
Posted by Dana at 12:40 AM
Sunday, April 03, 2005
I am so tired of hearing liberals whine and complain about how other countries, especially European nations, are so much better than America. This extends all the way up to the Supreme Court. How our forefathers must be spinning in their graves! Our ancestors made many sacrifices to get away from Europe and to start a better life here. Our courts SHOULD NOT be looking to other countries when making rulings. To declare something unconstitutional should require that they actually base that decision on OUR constitution. I don't care about "world opinion." And thank God, neither did our Forefathers. We are America! Since when do we need to apologize for our laws. I can guarantee that the French don't have the slightest bit of concern about what we Americans think when creating new laws (they obviously don't care that we think they are the biggest cowards). Do we have to poll the world now? This is absolutely ridiculous. We are America!!!! Where would Europe be without us?
When my husband and I decide to establish family rules, we don't go around and find out what our neighbors are doing. No, we decide based on our family, our background and our belief system, all of which is unique to us.
I know that I am rambling, but this burns me up!
Posted by Dana at 11:43 PM
It's about time!
I have always said that gun laws only affect law-abiding citizens. They don't keep guns out of the hands of criminals, who by definition, don't follow laws. I would even love to see a repeal of the zero tolerance laws regarding no guns at schools. Of course, I don't believe that students should be bringing guns to school, but I do believe that principals or even teachers should be allowed to have concealed weapons. Right now, if a gunman gets into any of our schools, it is like shooting fish in a barrel. Our kids don't have a chance of protection. The more adults that allowed to have concealed weapons, the better protected we all are.
Posted by Dana at 10:50 PM
I am absolutely stunned. I'm at a loss for words.
Episcopal Bishop Gene Robinson, the first openly homosexual bishop of his denomination, has angered traditionalist Anglicans by suggesting that Jesus Christ might have been homosexual.
Read the whole article here.
Posted by Dana at 9:37 PM
Saturday, April 02, 2005
I always knew that the polls that the MSM have been touting for the past two weeks in regards to Terri were very skewed. The questions that were being asked were very misdirecting. Now Zogby has issued a new poll with questions containing accurate information and the outcome is much different.
"If a disabled person is not terminally ill, not in a coma, and not being kept alive on life support, and they have no written directive, should or should they not be denied food and water," the poll asked.
A whopping 79 percent said the patient should not have food and water taken away while just 9 percent said yes.
Now, let's see is the MSM reports these findings.
Posted by Dana at 11:38 AM
You know the question...If you were stranded on an island, what would you take? Other than the obvious (food, water, ...), I would have to say my mascara and my perfume. There is nothing that can make me feel better than nice, long, lush lashes and smelling pretty (shallow and vain, I know. But that's me). Now I find out that there are some that want me to get rid of them.
As if women don't have enough to worry about, some activists are trying to expand the list to include our makeup drawer. This month, a conference held at Harvard Medical School by Hurricane Voices, an activist organization focusing on breast cancer, will warn women of the "dangers" presented by items from face lotion to perfume. Activists in California, meanwhile, are urging high school girls to throw out their "dangerous" cosmetics in "Operation Beauty Drop." In Europe, activists have convinced the government to ban the use of certain substances, known as phthalates, in cosmetics.
This article is a must read.
Posted by Dana at 10:20 AM
When I was growing up, the Baby Boomers would continually be lamenting about "Generation X." They were constantly telling us that we were apathetic, cynical, lazy, etc. and that we propably wouldn't amount to much. Well, I think that we have proved them wrong and we have done us proud. There are more of us Generation X Republicans in Congress than Democrats or Baby Boomers. Of course, if those Baby Boomers are Democrats, maybe their opinions of us haven't changed.
Posted by Dana at 9:35 AM
Friday, April 01, 2005
Like I said in a previous post, I attended Pope John Paul II High School. When I was a sophomore, the Pope came to New Orleans. There was hope that John Paul would stop by his namesake school (ours was the first school named after him). Eventhough the school visit was not able to take place, I was able to go hear the mass given by the Pope at the University of New Orleans. The crowd was so large that the Mass was held outside and I remember that the weather was horrible. It rained unbelievably, until the Pope came out and started the Mass. The rain stopped for the duration of the Mass. I remember the very tangible feeling of excitement that filled the air. We knew that we were all in the presence of a great man. I know that no one who was in attendance that day will ever forget it. I still look for the pavillion specially built for that day everytime that I drive past the campus of UNO.
Please pray for the Pope's last moments to be peaceful and serene.
Posted by Dana at 7:27 PM
Even though I am now a practicing Methodist, I was raised Catholic. I evened graduated from Pope John Paul II High School. So it is with a very heavy heart that I watch the declining health of the Pope. It's hard to believe that the end of his life is so near. I'm truly at a loss for words.
Posted by Dana at 5:37 PM
It was announced today that Gulf Coast Laundry Services will not be moving to New Orleans. They decided to move to the Mississippi Gulf Coast instead. Why? Because of the taxes in New Orleans. Taxes in New Orleans are 30% higher than in Gulfport. The sad thing is that I doubt the powers that be in New Orleans even understand the impact of this. Many are fooling themselves thinking that people will want to come to New Orleans for its charm, history, character, etc. Look around and you will see a city that is withering. I don't know what the solution is, but I can tell you that if things need to change. Other cities have far more to offer companies and businesses and those are the cities that are thriving.
Posted by Dana at 4:52 PM
Those of you that live in Louisiana know that the schools in St. Tammany parish continually rank highest in the state. That is something to be proud of. However, it is sad that the brightest of our students leave the state in search of better jobs. It would it seem that Louisiana and St. Tammany parish would be doing everything in their power to keep all of these students that we have worked so hard to educate. Why are we paying to educate people only to have them help the economy of other states? After having moved back to the area, I can see how there is such an anti-economic growth movement. The St. Tammany parish council seems to be doing everything it can to kill its future. Don't people realize that without growth, you will die. That goes for the economy too. There is no status quo economically. Eventually, we will see it decline even as the economy in the rest of the country is growing.
Posted by Dana at 1:18 PM
I can't believe that Michael Schiavo can be so cruel. Not only did he kill the Schindler's daughter, but now he won't even tell them where their daughter will be buried so that they can attend her funeral. As the mother of two children, there is nothing that would have stopped me from fighting for their lives. And then to be denied the ability visit either of their gravesites would be a crushing blow. Mr. Schiavo himself has two children. How can he look at them and not be able to imagine the agony that he is putting the Schindler's through. This just proves to me that he is heartless.
Posted by Dana at 11:07 AM
After careful consideration, we here at Blogs for Bush have decided to endorse Hillary Clinton for re-election to the Senate in 2006 and for President in 2008. Nothing would be more likely to bring America out of its current political morass than the intellectually brilliant and politically principled positions of the Senator from New York."
Read more here.
Posted by Dana at 7:19 AM