Keeping It Right

Keeping It Right is for thought provoking conversationist. It's for those who love to talk about today's issues, yesterday's history and tomorrow's future.

Name:
Location: Moreno Valley, CA

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

WSJ: The Depression of 2008? Don't Count on it

WSJ - The Intelligent Investor: The Depression of 2008? Don't Count on It

Link: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122272238714287459.html

Wall Street is dead.

Whether it was murder or suicide is beside the point: Wall Street as it has operated for the past 75 years has been obliterated in a matter of weeks. And witnessing this violent death in broad daylight has traumatized investors everywhere.

The Wall Street domino has toppled just about everything in sight: U.S. stocks large and small, within the financial industry and outside of it; foreign stocks; oil and other commodities; real-estate investment trusts; formerly booming emerging markets like India and China. Even gold, although it has inched up lately, has lost 10% from its highs earlier this year. Not even cash seems entirely safe, as money-market funds barely averted a "run on the bank."

to read more - please click on the link above

Fox News: Unlike Clinton, Biden gets pass for saying he was "shot at" in Iraq

Fox News: Unlike Clinton, Biden Gets Pass for Saying He was "Shot At" in Iraq.
Link - http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/09/30/unlike-clinton-biden-gets-pass-saying-shot-iraq/

When Hillary Clinton told a tall tale about "landing under sniper fire" in Bosnia, she was accused of "inflating her war experience" by Barack Obama's campaign -- but the campaign has been silent about Joe Biden telling his own questionable story about being "shot at" in Iraq.

When Hillary Clinton told a tall tale about "landing under sniper fire" in Bosnia, she was accused of "inflating her war experience" by rival Democrat Barack Obama's campaign.
But the campaign has been silent about Obama's running mate, Joe Biden, telling his own questionable story about being "shot at" in Iraq.
"Let's start telling the truth," Biden said during a presidential primary debate sponsored by YouTube last year. "Number one, you take all the troops out - you better have helicopters ready to take those 3,000 civilians inside the Green Zone, where I have been seven times and shot at. You better make sure you have protection for them, or let them die."
But when questioned about the episode afterward by the Hill newspaper, Biden backpedaled from his claim of being "shot at" and instead allowed: "I was near where a shot landed."

Monday, September 29, 2008

Democrats Covering Up for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac

RF23 - Bailout Denied; Wall Street Falls Over 700 Points

RF 23 - Bailout Denied; Wall Street falls over 700 points

A $700 billion bailout, thats "b" for billion and bailout failed in the house and caused Wall Street stocks to drop over 700 points.

Good.

Where does the gov't regardless of what aisle it sits get off taking tax payer funds to bail out banks or companies that either A, made shady deals like the banks did or B, unable to compete for example the auto industry and airline companies? They fail or their shadiness comes to bite them in the ass and we the tax payers have to dole out billions of dollars to keep them afloat..

Hell no! I'm glad the house did the right thing on this matter. Those Democrats and Republicans that supported this bailout ought to be ashamed of themselves. Both Obama and McCain ought to be ashamed of themselves for not "saying what they meant" and not "listening to the American public." This kind of not listening or "We know what's better for the American public, than the American public knows what best for them," attitude seems to be widespread.

Oil prices go up...Representatives say we are dependent on foreign oil and need an alternative. One of the alternatives is to drill in ANWAR or off shore. But that's not what they meant, they want the American public to leave their cars and pile in any bus or train.

And now this bail out...The American people disagree with a bailout and although can feel what some folks are going to lose...Still does not equal the "making new" of an individual or company..Let these companies die of natural causes.

So we dodged a government bullet, but it's not over.

House Ignores President and Congress: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080929/ap_on_bi_ge/financial_meltdown

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Philly Dems note discomfort over Obama among some white voters
By DAVE DAVIESPhiladelphia Daily News
daviesd@phillynews.com 215-854-2595

WHEN DEMOCRATIC vice-presidential candidate Joe Biden was greeting voters at a Northeast Philadelphia diner recently, he couldn't have expected what he heard when he slid into a corner booth next to Carolyn Bauer.

Bauer told a reporter that she'd told Biden she'd never vote for him or his running mate.
"It'd be disgusting to get a man named Barack Obama as president of the United States," she said. "No way!"

Her view is not unique.

During the April 22 primary, a woman emerging from a Newtown, Bucks County, polling place said to a volunteer in an Obama T-shirt, "So you actually voted for Buckwheat?"
While both comments were atypical of interactions at the diner and polling place, Democratic leaders acknowledge that there is discomfort among some white voters.

Oh! Please Read More: http://www.philly.com/dailynews/local/20080922_Philly_Dems_note_discomfort_over_Obama_among_some_white_voters.html

Investors Business Daily 2 Fer

Investors Business Daily: And The Wrong (9/19)
Article Link: http://www.ibdeditorials.com/IBDArticles.aspx?id=306716270814143

And The Wrong
By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY Posted Friday, September 19, 2008 4:20 PM PT

Election '08: Barack Obama's quasi-presidential address offering a four-part solution to the financial crisis offers little more than veiled pork-barrel programs. It signals a mind more focused on elections than answers.

How else can one explain why, against all data and market indicators, Obama's painting the American economy as gloomily as possible?

Obama seems to think that if he can persuade voters the sky is falling, his halo as savior will be brighter, even if he doesn't have a credible grasp of economics. That's why he's begun a nonstop verbal drumbeat of misery on today's difficulties, never mind the facts.

And what would Obama do instead? We're beginning to find out. In a four-point action plan Obama presented on Friday, he goes beyond "hope" and "change" oratory and moves on to what really matters to him: the big-government spending he's been selling all election.

And here's what Obama proposes:

• Point one, Obama calls for subsidies to "working families" to beat high food and energy prices. The problem: High food and energy prices won't be helped by subsidies, but by more supplies. The real solution is to force a Democratic Congress to allow domestic drilling for oil. Thus far, Obama isn't even "present" on that one.

• Point two, dubbed "mutual responsibility and reciprocity," calls for banks to subsidize bad borrowers to "protect homeowners and the economy." This would eliminate personal responsibility. Demagoguing false details — such as about bankers getting golden parachutes, instead of 25,000 of them losing their jobs — Obama insists the solution is simple: Banks shouldn't foreclose on delinquent home buyers. Obviously, he hasn't heard of how bad loans drained Japan's economy of its vitality for a decade.

• Third, Obama seeks "new oversight and regulations of our financial institutions." That means forcing new bureaucracies and regulations into the private sector, the very phenomenon that has made navigating our health care industry such a delight.

• Fourth, Obama seeks to empower unelected foreign entities to the same "globally coordinated (rescue) effort." But Bernanke and Paulson have already done the heavy lifting, as the rest of "the world" has done next to nothing. One more global bureaucracy won't make America's financial system any healthier.

Obama makes a final point by blasting the failure of "common-sense regulation and oversight," to the financial system.

He ought to bring this up with fellow Democrats in Congress. In the 1990s, Rep. Barney Frank blocked key reforms even as he took campaign cash from banking interests. In 2004, President Bush attempted to revive the reforms, but Democrats blocked them.

Today's bank crisis isn't due to the inherent evil of the private sector, as Obama claims. It's due to Democratic leaders who were bought off by political donations and hostile to reform.
Obama, curiously enough, is one of the top recipients of cash from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Small wonder, then, that his main election argument would expand the scope of government by using the banks' subprime woes as leverage. (woes? at 2%?)

More from Business Investors Daily:
'Crony' Capitalism Is Root Cause Of Fannie And Freddie Troubles
By TERRY JONESINVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY Posted Monday, September 22, 2008

Link: http://www.ibdeditorials.com/IBDArticles.aspx?id=306978378974502

In the past couple of weeks, as the financial crisis has intensified, a new talking point has emerged from the Democrats in Congress: This is all a "crisis of capitalism," in socialist financier George Soros' phrase, and a failure to regulate our markets sufficiently.

Well, those critics may be right — it is a crisis of capitalism. A crisis of politically driven crony capitalism, to be precise.

Indeed, Democrats have so effectively mastered crony capitalism as a governing strategy that they've convinced many in the media and the public that they had nothing whatsoever to do with our current financial woes.

Barack Obama has repeatedly blasted "Bush-McCain" economic policies as the cause, as if the two were joined at the hip. Funny, because over the past 8 years, those who tried to fix Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — the trigger for today's widespread global financial meltdown — were stymied repeatedly by congressional Democrats.

This wasn't an accident. Though some key Republicans deserve blame as well, it was a concerted Democratic effort that made reform of Fannie and Freddie impossible.

The reason for this is simple: Fannie and Freddie became massive providers both of reliable votes among grateful low-income homeowners, and of massive giving to the Democratic Party by grateful investment bankers, both at the two government-sponsored enterprises and on Wall Street.

The result: A huge taxpayer rescue that at last estimate is approaching $700 billion but may go even higher.

It all started, innocently enough, in 1994 with President Clinton's rewrite of the Carter-era Community Reinvestment Act. Ostensibly intended to help deserving minority families afford homes — a noble idea — it instead led to a reckless surge in mortgage lending that has pushed our financial system to the brink of chaos.

Subprime's Mentors

Fannie and Freddie, the main vehicle for Clinton's multicultural housing policy, drove the explosion of the subprime housing market by buying up literally hundreds of billions of dollars in substandard loans — funding loans that ordinarily wouldn't have been made based on such time-honored notions as putting money down, having sufficient income, and maintaining a payment record indicating creditworthiness.

With all the old rules out the window, Fannie and Freddie gobbled up the market. Using extraordinary leverage, they eventually controlled 90% of the secondary market mortgages. Their total portfolio of loans topped $5.4 trillion — half of all U.S. mortgage lending. They borrowed $1.5 trillion from U.S. capital markets with — wink, wink — an "implicit" government guarantee of the debts.

This created the problem we are having today.

As we noted a week ago, subprime lending surged from around $35 billion in 1994 to nearly $1 trillion last year — for total growth of 2,757% as of last year.
No real market grows that fast for that long without being fixed.
And that's just what Fannie and Freddie were — fixed. They became a government-run, privately owned home finance monopoly.

Fannie and Freddie became huge contributors to Congress, spending millions to influence votes. As we've noted here before, the bulk of the money went to Democrats.

To read more: click or paste on above link.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Two Different Articles in the Boston Globe..Days apart...

Two Different Articles in the Boston Globe...

Boston Globe (Editorial): Worlds apart on healthcare
Link: http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/editorial_opinion/editorials/articles/2008/09/21/worlds_apart_on_healthcare/ (may have to register to read)

ON FEW ISSUES do Barack Obama and John McCain diverge as dramatically as they do on healthcare. Both say they want to reduce costs and expand coverage to the 47 million uninsured. But while Obama wants to build on the existing employer-based system with new coverage plans for families and businesses, McCain aims to move the country away from work-based insurance and toward a system in which all Americans cut their own deals with private insurers.

If the national campaign ever gets past lipstick and the collapse of investment banks, these differences on healthcare may get the attention they deserve.

The Massachusetts modelObama's plan is like the new Massachusetts universal coverage law with one exception: There is no mandate on individuals to get insurance or pay a penalty. Just as this state did, he would expand government subsidies and programs for the uninsured. His proposed National Health Insurance Exchange looks like Commonwealth Choice, this state's lineup of heavily regulated private insurance plans for people without work-based insurance. In Massachusetts, 94.6 percent of residents now have insurance. Without the mandate, Obama's plan would never come as close to universal coverage, but it would expand coverage.

McCain, on the other hand, would use the tax code to shift insurance from the workplace to the marketplace. Under his plan, employees would start having to pay income tax on the value of the healthcare premiums they receive from their employers, making it a less attractive benefit. At the same time, McCain offers a tax credit of $2,500 for individuals and $5,000 for families toward the cost of coverage at work or in the private, nongroup market.

The upshot, analysts say, is that many young, healthy workers would reject their employers' taxable insurance benefit and either go without or find a high-deductible, low-premium policy on the private market. This would leave employers with an insured base of older, less healthy workers, which would drive up the cost of their insurance. The likely result is that many companies would drop coverage altogether.

Currently, about 60 percent of all Americans, 180 million people, get health insurance through their own job or that of a family member. A major drawback is that the insurance is not portable when an employee quits, gets laid off, or moves to a new position. But the group rates that employer-based insurance affords have kept its cost manageable. This has been the bulwark of health insurance since World War II.

HAD ENOUGH? WELL CHECK OUT THIS ARTICLE IN THE SAME PAPER
Boston Globe: Across Mass., Wait to see doctors grows. Grows!!!
Written by: Liz Kowalczyk
Link: (May have to register): http://www.boston.com/news/health/articles/2008/09/22/across_mass_wait_to_see_doctors_grows/

The wait to see primary care doctors in Massachusetts has grown to as long as 100 days, while the number of practices accepting new patients has dipped in the past four years, with care the scarcest in some rural areas.

Now, as the state's health insurance mandate threatens to make a chronic doctor shortage worse, the Legislature has approved an unprecedented set of financial incentives for young physicians, and other programs to attract primary care doctors. But healthcare leaders fear the new measures will take several years to ease the shortage.

Senate President Therese Murray, who championed the legislation, said that many of the roughly 439,000 people who obtained health coverage under the 2006 insurance law are struggling to find a doctor. "You can take a look at the whole state and you are not going to find a primary care physician anytime soon," she said in an interview. "It became apparent very quickly that we needed to do something."

Access to internists and family practitioners is especially difficult in the western counties and on Cape Cod, doctors said, but Boston, too, is feeling the squeeze. Doctors and patient advocates report growing stress for patients trying to get care, and for physicians trying to squeeze them in:

In Williamstown, one doctor said he is working up to 60 hours a week to handle the increased patient load.

In Amherst, a physician began accepting new patients this year, but was so inundated by newly insured people that she had to shut her doors to new patients again six weeks later.

And in Great Barrington, Volunteers in Medicine, a clinic for the uninsured, is for the first time treating insured patients. It has taken weeks for newly insured residents to find doctors who will accept new patients, and months longer to get an appointment.

"We've been covering them because of the long time lag between getting insurance and getting established with a doctor," said Lynne Shiels, clinical care coordinator.

Access to care is not just a problem for the newly insured. Herman Berkman of Adams fell down some stairs a couple of months ago. But his primary care doctor, Robert Jandl, and an orthopedist's office were busy, Berkman said, so the 85-year-old went to the emergency room. Recently, when his blood sugar soared, Berkman had to see another doctor in Jandl's practice. He has a routine appointment with Jandl next month, made last February, but "if something happens in between, that's a different ball game," said Berkman, who added that he is very satisfied with Jandl's medical care.

Jandl has watched his colleagues in the Berkshires retire, move away, and quit high-stress practices to work predictable shifts in a hospital. With few new physicians replacing them, he had taken on so many patients that earlier this year, he closed his practice to new patients.

"This is a small community, so we've really extended ourselves trying to provide for these folks," said the 55-year-old Jandl, who belongs to Williamstown Medical Associates and works 55 to 60 hours a week. "But it's at the expense of everyone's personal lives. The hours are just not tenable for us right now."

A national primary care shortage has been looming for several years as doctors retire or leave the specialty, which requires long, unpredictable hours and pays less than most other medical specialties; some larger practices pay $170,000 to $190,000, but smaller rural practices can pay as little as $110,000.

At the same time, fewer new doctors are entering the field. According to a survey published this month in the Journal of the American Medical Association, 2 percent of students graduating from medical school plan to practice primary care.

In its annual survey of physicians, the Massachusetts Medical Society, the state's largest physicians group, found that among 100 internists the average wait time for an appointment for a new patient was 50 days, with some reporting waits of up to 100 days. In 2004, the average wait time was 47 days and the longest wait was 87 days. The waits for appointments with obstetrician/gynecologists and family practitioners also have generally increased.

Jandl said patients wait 65 to 85 days for a routine appointment with him, but two other internists he practices with have four-month waits. Patients with urgent problems or who are willing to see a nurse practitioner can get in sooner. He said a survey he conducted of other internists in the Berkshires showed generally shorter wait times.

The medical society also found that fewer primary care doctors are taking on new patients; 42 percent of internists surveyed have closed their practices to them, compared with 33 percent in 2004.

Amherst family physician Kate Atkinson decided to open her practice to new patients in January partly so she could take on the newly insured, especially since, by her count, 18 doctors in the area had closed their practices over the last two years. Most of those physicians have become hospitalists, caring for patients in the hospital, she said.

"There were so many people waiting to get in, it was like opening the floodgates," Atkinson said. "Most of these patients hadn't seen the doctor in a long time so they had a lot of complicated problems." She closed her practice to new patients again six weeks later. "We literally have 10 calls a day from patients crying and begging," she said.

Legislators hope the law passed in July to control the cost and improve the quality of healthcare will draw more primary care doctors into the workforce. Richard Cauchi of the National Conference of State Legislatures said no other state has passed so many initiatives in a single year to increase access to primary care.

The Massachusetts law includes $1.5 million this year to help the University of Massachusetts Medical School expand its class size - from 103 students to as many as 125 - and to waive tuition and fees for students who agree to work as primary care doctors in Massachusetts for four years after they finish training.

The state also is spending $1.7 million this year to repay medical school loans of doctors who agree to work in community health centers, and at least $500,000 to pay off debt for doctors who agree to work in primary care in underserved areas for at least two years; the average medical school student graduates with about $150,000 in debt. A new healthcare workforce center will identify underserved areas.

The law also directs state officials to develop a housing grant or loan program that will help doctors buy houses, including money for down payments, mortgage interest buy-downs, and closing costs.

Legislators don't know how many primary care doctors the package will attract to the state, but they believe it could be a significant number.

A loan repayment program started last year with a $5 million grant from Bank of America - the state also contributed $1.7 million last year - has attracted 45 doctors and 19 nurse practitioners. They will work in community health centers for two to three years in exchange for $20,000 to $75,000 in loan repayment.

"One of the things that concerns me is so many of the [legislative] initiatives have a long lag time," said Dr. Bruce Auerbach, an emergency room physician and president of the Massachusetts Medical Society. "There are things we could do more immediately and aggressively in terms of payment reform and reducing the administrative burden on doctors. Those are the things that are really driving people out of practice."

- click or paste the above link to read more...

Fanz23's Sports Take

Fanz23's Sports Take

Hey all, since I post most my takes on other blogs and my own, I decided to just title it with my online tag name and be done with it. For those of you, who have never seen this tag name of Fanz23, well it's simple..I'm a sports fan and in honor of one of the greatest basketball players on the planet, the number 23 is for Michael Jordan. So there you have it, Fanz23. Let's get into so we can begin yet another week of sports talk and cryin'.

U.S. Open: I know "Major Lefty" is geeked about this, and I hope he chimes in on this, but the U.S. team beat the Euros and in honor of the T.V. ratings getter (Tiger Woods), wore red/burgundy shirts to signify victory. Props to the U.S. team for coming together and obviously having a good time in beating back our Euro enemies.

MLB: I don't know what it is about "fresh" not "retreads" managers that succeed in a long, long, long gruelsome season of baseball. First Mike Scioscia leads the then Anaheim Angels to a World Series win over the Dusty Baker's Giants and then Jack McKeon is at the helm as the Florida Marlins win their second WS in 7 years. And now out of nowhere and I can admit the Tampa Bay Rays surprised the hell out of me, by having the season they're having and they are doing it with a "fresh" manager in Joe Maddon. So what's the take...Teams should stop hiring retreads that were fired for not winning enough games or having ran its course with the team and hire fresh new blood. Period.


NFL: Week 3 will be wrapped up tonight when the Green Ba err!! New York Jets take on the San Diego Chargers. The Chargers look like they are going to play without LaDainian Tomlinson and while that is not breaking news, since Tomlinson sat his soft backside on the bench in the AFC championship game last year. (it seems like the bench is the best place for him) And can we stop dubbing him as "LT" isn't that a slap in the face to "LT" Lawrence Taylor, the hall of famer and bad azz line backer for the New York Giants. That LT played hurt, that LT didn't BMW about the play callin' or his quarterback, let alone his coach. When Tomlinson can just play football and show enough balls to play through pain and really support his quarterback. We might can revisit the "LT" dub. Until then he's just Tomlinson or PAB.

Miami v. New England: Remember that saying "fool me once, shame on me, fool me twice so on, so on." Well apparently, the Patriots didn't get the message, because they got fooled on one play, not once, not twice, but four freaking times. And while being fooled, they made Dolphins' running back Ronnie Brown look like an all pro. Brown ran for 3 TD and threw for one, while the Dolphins made the Patriots surrender up their 21 regular season game winning streak. Way to go Fish, but remember no one else is going to be fooled by that play. Not unless you got the Raiders on your schedule..and speaking of the Raiders.

Oakland Raiders: According to Chris Mortenson (ESPN) the Raiders are going to fire Lane Kiffen today, Hey Lane, why wait until the sweat suit fires you, walk up to his dimly lit office and slam your playback down his desk and tell him to (rhymes with Chuck) off! and die already. Better yet, take your playbook and sling it from 50 yards out and plant it in the sweat suits chest. That way he can go out the way he likes his offense...the deep ball baby!

NFC "Not So Easy" East: The NFC East is so far the best division in the NFL, the Giants and Cowboys are undefeated, the Eagles and Redskins both have one loss and that's to a division team. I think if they continue to play ball like they're playing the winner of that division is the winner of the Super Bowl because...

AFC "is looking real easy to beat:" New England, down, Indianapolis, down, Pittsburgh is probable. Baltimore is probable. Tennessee is probable. San Diego is probable. And the only team that is showing something, is Buffalo. 'nuff said. Oh, throw Jacksonville as probable too!

and now this:

NCAAF:

USC didn't play this weekend, but they should have had a live scrimmage or something, cause it getting hard to defend, why this team is ranked number 1, when the conference it plays in..well quite frankly..Sucks! I tell you if LSU bitched, moaned and whined about not being number 1 or campaigned to play in yet another BCS championship game..I can't say anything. After week 1, I thought the PAC 10 had at least 4 or 5 teams to be in the top 25 and maybe two teams playing in a BCS bowl game...Not anymore...

UCLA: Last week, all but gave excuses as to why they were going to lose this weekend, no quarterback, no offensive line, defense is dinged up and the coach's throat is messed up. I guess they played improved ball, they only lost 39-10.

Arizona State: What was that? I know at least two high school teams that could have played better ball than what you did against Georgia on Saturday, pathetic!

Oregon: Well you survived, last weekend but playing catch up ball finally caught up with you and you got done in by Boise State.

California: I'm still reeling over your lost to Maryland.

There you have it, 4 out of 5 teams, I thought was going to ball this season, and now since the PAC 10 is (rhymes with "hitty) it's hard to justify why coaches are voting SC number one.


NBA:

Did anyone catch Josh Howard's act last week..talking about not celebrating the "Star Spangled Banner" at an event hosted by Allen Iverson. Howard said during the playing of our national anthem, that he ain't celebrating this (rhymes with "hit) cause he's black and one of his homies yelled out, Obama Oh-8! Like Obama needs this attached to him. Usually we try to get athletes to opine about certain subjects besides the sport they play, cause we wanna know what they think or feel about certain situations. For instance, Allen Iverson, when he was "Quite Frankly with Stephen A. Smith," I though Iverson had a lot to say and I was interested in hearing what he thinks about the world, life and the inner city. He gave great points and a different perspective and when the interview ended, I felt like Smith should have had a part 2 of Iverson's interview. But when you have a-holes like Howard walking around dissing the national anthem, freely I might add, it makes me want to rethink if I really want to hear Vladmir Guerrero give an interview. Or, interested in what Tiger Woods or Michael Jordan really think about our world or any other subject. I rather keep the high opinion of them, as I do and not have to cringe when they say something as idiotic like Josh Howard continues to do or say.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Stephen A. Smith: We Know Howard can play, but there's little value in what he has to say

Stephen A. Smith: We Know Howard can play, but there's little value in what he has to say..

Josh Howard may not be the Dallas Mavericks' best player, but he's their most complete player. He has a better post-up game than Dirk Nowitzki and better all-around skills than anyone else on their roster. Until six months ago he was universally recognized as the Mavs' best chance at capturing a championship, so much so that seemingly every team in the National Basketball Association inquired about his availability.

Now he's known these days as the franchise's resident idiot, someone who is gainfully employed solely because of his ability to bounce and shoot a basketball. A character seemingly destined to embarrass his way into exile from a league that's garnered him millions of dollars because he won't stop perpetuating his ignorance and hostility to the masses, simultaneously casting an ominous shadow over his contemporaries.
A show of hands from any NBA player out there who's inclined to invite Josh Howard to his next shindig? Thought so!

Read more: http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/columns/story?columnist=smith_stephen&page=jhoward-080918&lpos=spotlight&lid=tab2pos1

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Larry Elder: Obama v McCain - A Clear Choice

Larry Elder: Obama vs. McCain - A Clear Choice

Source Link: http://townhall.com/Columnists/LarryElder/2008/09/11/obama_vs_mccain_-_a_clear_choice

A matter of "neighborliness." That's how Democratic presidential aspirant Barack Obama justified raising taxes.

Obama compared the circumstances of a person who is "sitting pretty" with that of a waitress. The waitress struggles, said Obama, while the rich can, and should, pay more. Nothing more, really, than a standard soak-the-rich plan, redistributing the wealth from the haves to the have-nots. But does Obama practice his own "neighborliness"?

When Obama and his wife earned between $200,000 and $300,000 annually from 2000 through 2004, they donated less than 1 percent to charity. As a result of the sales from Obama's two books, he and Michelle earned as much as $4 million per year the past couple of years. Then the Obamas' charitable contributions went up to 5 percent.
Let's turn to Iraq. Obama grudgingly concedes that the surge worked "beyond our wildest dreams." But he points out an "underlying problem." What "underlying problem"? Obama accuses the Iraqi government of failing to attain "political reconciliation," insisting that the government refuses to "take responsibility." Really?

Please click the above link to read more....

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

MSN: VY's Momma: QB hurting inside and out

MSN: Vince Young's mother: QB hurting inside and out

Before I post this article, all I want to say is, is, is

COME ON PEOPLE!!

Are you kidding me?! Is this where we are in professional sports? A team is getting blown out and reporters are concerned about the losing team. A NFL running back hurts his knee, practices ALL WEEK! says he can go and play in the most important game of not only his career, but it will get his team over the hump or as they say, the monkey off his back, and what does this star running back do? Plays two series and sits his pun, oh! I'm not going to say it, sits his backside down on the bench with helmet on and watches his quarterback, who was playing after being cut on and doing his best to win.

And now this, A quarterback who came into the league with a chip, or what we thought was a chip on his shoulder can't take being booed because all he can do is "Forrest Gump" [Run!] his way down the field. His passing game is weak and every day it resembles a now jailed quarterback and dog fighter promotor Mike Vick. Reports have it that a team mate of Vince Young said that his [Young] skin is so thin, and this is without the drums, it's onion skin thin.

I don't think Michael Jackson is that sensitive. Come on Vince, shake yourself!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Fanz's Sports Reports (with a little twist)

Another "Non" Story Sport Report:

From time to time, well most of the time, we're hit with unimportant, none of our business, just plain bull bleep non sports story. A "So What" kind of thing if you will. And like a well scheduled commuter train, we get one here.

"Police summoned to help look for "emotionally" unbalanced Vince Young"

Now when you read that, you automatically think of Quentin Jackson, the *MMA (UFC) former lightweight champion, who took police on a high speed chase after leaving a scene of an accident. Vince Young, who was injured on week 1 of the NFL season, is now apparently emotionally gone and according to reports of the media, physically gone.

So after reading the sensationalized story, we find that VY was at a friends house, watching Monday Night Football and throwing back hot wings.

Yet, this story warrants, coast to coast, internet to internet coverage. And oh yeah, Why did Vince Young, leave his house to go over his friends house to watch a game and eat hot wings?

Story: http://msn.foxsports.com/nfl/story/8540384?MSNHPHMA

*MMA = Mixed Martial Arts

Next Story: Professional Wussification?

Last night on the second game of a Monday Night Football double header, the Denver Broncos put hands and feets (I put "feets" down on purpose) on the Raiders, and by the way, this is not the Raider team I saw this pre-season. Anyway the Broncos were up big and the game for all practicality was over, until the Broncos scored again, late in the fourth quarter, when the subject of pouring it on came up. As you all know Mike Shanahan used to coach the Raiders and was unceremoniously fired after two seasons. Well after winning back to back Super Bowls and numerous playoff runs with the Broncos, it's nice to know that Shanahan is still miffed at the Raiders. But back to the subject, we talk about the wussifying of our children, when it comes to team sports, and it almost showed up last night.

One of the announcers, named Mike Greenburg, co-host of the Mike & Mike (Golic) Show mentioned that the Broncos were pouring it on and at some point, the Broncos should let up. Fortunately for all of us, "We gonna punch in the nose and hit 'em in the belly" Americans, Mike Ditka chimed and said, "No, if you don't want to be scored on or embarrassed, the solution is simple. Stop them." Ditka also said the Raiders should be playing for pride.

Story: Bikers, Roids, Lance?

According to ESPN, 7 time Tour De France Lance Armstrong is making a come back. Yawn, although Armstrong's feats were incredible compounded with his overcoming testicular cancer. I don't think his coming back is going to change the collective minds of sports fans like myself. I'm convinced that Armstrong took some type of steroid, but until I have concrete evidence, he's in Barry Bonds category. "Maybe he did - Maybe He didn't." Anyway, if Lance wants to inspire me some more, do what "Forrest Gump" did. Get on your bike and ride to the city's limit and ride some more until you get past the county limit and ride some more until you enter the next state and ride some more until you reach (fill in the blank) ocean. And if you're not tired, ride to the next (fill in the blank) ocean.

Now that's inspiration.

Story: http://sports.espn.go.com/oly/cycling/news/story?id=3578350


Story: The [Williams] Sisters, You love to hate and watch

Fans of that brutal show "Big Brother" were shocked to see women's tennis on in place of that bad show, but not CBS. And lets get this out, Golf and Tennis, more specifically, ladies tennis, get a booster shot in ratings every time Tiger and the Williams Sisters are playing in the final rounds of their respective sport. And Monday's match with Serena Williams capturing her third US Open title showed that CBS got more ratings than the pre-empted reality show "Big Brother." Say what you want about the Williams ladies, they fake matches, they're uppity and you don't like them, whatever! Somebody does and apparently the haters are watching.

Story: http://msn.foxsports.com/tennis/story/8538622/Women's-final-draws-best-TV-rating-since-'02

Monday, September 08, 2008

Dinesh D'Souza: Help Obama's Half Brother Move Out His Hut

Dinesh D' Souza: Help Obama's Half Brother Move Out of His (6x10) Hut

The biggest scandal of the election campaign is going unreported, for the most part, by the mainstream newspapers and TV shows. Imagine if John McCain or Sarah Palin had a half-brother who was living in a hut. Imagine if McCain, a multimillionaire, did nothing to help the guy. Imagine if McCain came to the convention and spoke incessantly about compassion and how he was inspired by the biblical mandate: we are our brothers' keepers! This would be the lead story on the evening news.

Link: http://townhall.com/columnists/DineshDSouza/2008/09/08/help_obamas_half-brother_move_out_of_his_hut

Now this reminds me of reports that Supreme Ct. Justice Clarence Thomas does not support his at the time welfare receiving half sister. Now we have a Presidential Candidate, A sitting U.S. Senate, a former State Senator, a community organizer, a school board member letting his brother kick it in a 6x10 hut in Kenya. Now unlike the writer, I'm not sending a nickle of Chinese money to this guy and I don't want him to mysteriously show up here and gain citizenship either! So it sounds like either little or big brother Obama needs to find Western Union and get some Kenyan duckets to him...oh wait a minute, he's a U.S. Senate being paid with tax payer funds...

S.O.L. dude!

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Larry Elder: JFK: Democrats Role Model

Larry Elder: JFK: Democrats' Role Model?

Source: http://townhall.com/Columnists/LarryElder/2008/09/04/jfk_democrats_role_model?page=full&comments=true


The John F. Kennedy legacy came up repeatedly during the Democratic National Convention. But today, would JFK even be a Democrat?


Kennedy supported, in today's lexicon, a George W. Bush-like "belligerent" approach to fighting the Cold War, and told CBS' Walter Cronkite it would be "a great mistake" to withdraw the American presence from Vietnam. In his 1961 inaugural speech, Kennedy said, "Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty."


How would such a man feel about fighting today's global peril -- Islamofascism?


Barack Obama likes to point to the 1961 Kennedy-Khrushchev summit to support his desire for meetings "without preconditions" with enemies such as Iran and North Korea.


But Kennedy's secretary of State, Dean Rusk, urged against such a non-conditions-based summit. And later, Kennedy called the summit meeting the "roughest thing in my life. (Khrushchev) just beat the hell out of me. I've got a terrible problem if he thinks I'm inexperienced and have no guts." Indeed, Khrushchev thought Kennedy a weak amateur. Following the summit, Khrushchev built the Berlin Wall and placed missiles in Cuba, an action that led the world to the brink of nuclear conflict.


To read the whole article: http://townhall.com/Columnists/LarryElder/2008/09/04/jfk_democrats_role_model?page=full&comments=true

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Chicago Students Skip School In Funding Protest

Chicago students skip school in funding protest
By JENNY SONG

NORTHFIELD, Ill. (AP) —

More than 1,000 Chicago public school students skipped the first day of classes Tuesday to protest unequal education funding, a boycott organizers said would continue through the week with help from retired teachers who will turn office lobbies into impromptu classrooms.

The students took church buses 30 miles north to the wealthy suburb of Northfield, where they filled out applications to enroll in the better-funded New Trier district. The move was largely symbolic because students must pay tuition to attend a school outside their home district.

The turnout fell short of the thousands organizers expected, and was a tiny fraction of the more than 400,000 students who attend Chicago public schools, but protesters and their parents said they're willing to keep the boycott going as long as it takes to persuade state officials to give their district more money.

"It's on us kids," said 14-year-old Tracey Stansberry, a student at Corliss High School. "If we don't, we'll be on the bottom."

Gillie Beal said she will keep her 12-year-old grandson involved in the protest as long as it takes.

"You must stand for something or you'll fall for anything," she said.

Chicago Public Schools spokesman Mike Vaughn said he did not know how many students boycotted the country's third-largest district Tuesday; attendance figures would not be available for a couple of days. Although district officials agree the system is underfunded, he said, they consider it a mistake for the children to miss any school.

"We want our kids to start the school year strong, and that means the first week of school," he said. "The first week, it is important for the kids to connect with teachers and lay the groundwork for the year. And that can't happen if kids aren't in school."

On Wednesday, boycott organizers will attempt to set up impromptu classrooms at Chicago City Hall and the state's James R. Thompson Center,as well as in the lobbies of more than a dozen Chicago corporations, including Boeing Co. and Aon Corp., that support Chicago's bid to host the 2016 Summer Olympics.

"If we say we're a world-class city, then we shouldn't be content with having second-class schools," said state Sen. James Meeks, who is leading the boycott of the district and is urging Gov. Rod Blagojevich and state lawmakers agreed to address school funding disparities.
Meeks said he had not cleared his plans with the city or officials of corporations where students are expected to gather, but expected they would not be turned away.

Jodi Kawada, a spokeswoman for Mayor Richard M. Daley, said she'd heard that the group might come to City Hall but hadn't gotten any confirmation.

"For protests in general — we allow protesters to express their First Amendment rights at City Hall," she said in a statement. "Our priority is to ensure the safety of the building occupants and the protesters."

Boeing spokesman John Dern said Tuesday that the Chicago-based company had not been contacted by organizers.

"If children arrive we would ensure their safety and our ability to conduct business," Dern said.
In Illinois, property taxes account for about 70 percent of school funding, meaning rural and inner-city schools generally end up with less to spend per student than suburban schools in areas with higher property values.

Chicago Public Schools spent $11,300 per student last year. New Trier High School spent $17,500 per student, near the top in the state.

Meeks is pushing for a pilot program that would distribute $120 million to four clusters of schools — high schools and their feeder schools — on Chicago's West Side, South Side, south suburbs and downstate. The governor and legislative leaders have made no promises.
"I do not believe that a child's education should be based on where they live," Meeks said. He compared the issue to apartheid in South Africa and said the situation makes it difficult for children to rise from poverty.

"We undereducated these kids' parents, we undereducated their grandparents and now we're in the process of undereducating them," Meeks said.

New Trier Superintendent Linda Yonke acknowledged that money played a role in school performance, along with supportive parents and hardworking students.
"There's also no denying the fact that funding allows us to have smaller classes, a deep and rich curriculum and many extracurricular activities," Yonke said. She said 1,100 elementary students and 150 high school students from Chicago filled out enrollment applications Tuesday for New Trier.

New Trier student body president Matt McAmbridge, a senior, told Chicago students at a rally in suburban Skokie on Tuesday afternoon that students there support the boycotters' cause and would help in any way they can.

"We know the sentiment among New Trier students ... is really in favor of getting better school funding for everybody," McAmbridge said.

On the bus ride to the suburban district, volunteers told the children they were taking part in a historic event similar to the bus boycott in Alabama in the 1950s.

Peggy Richmond, who accompanied her 12-year-old granddaughter Skyler Williams on the boycott, said she was forced to enroll Skyler in a private school because of the poor quality of the public schools in her Chicago neighborhood.

"I'm still angry," she said of having to pay $650 a month in tuition to ensure her granddaughter gets a good education.


Source: http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5h25Dp22bLwMyo-g2MUiwq4f6qX0wD92V02NG0

Wall Street Journal: Why Obama Can't Close the Sale

Wall Street Journal: Why Obama Can't Close the Sale
By AL HUBBARD and NOAM NEUSNER
September 3, 2008; Page A23

Even before John McCain shook up the presidential race by tapping Gov. Sarah Palin to be his running mate, polls weren't showing the late-August lead that Barack Obama (and many Republicans) expected. Why so?

It's not because of the brilliance of the McCain campaign. Rather we believe that -- despite the media's best efforts to exempt Mr. Obama's policies from critical examination -- American voters aren't sheep. They pay attention to the candidates and positions and make wise decisions about who should lead the country.

True, Mr. Obama enjoys several advantages. Republicans are struggling nationwide in head-to-head contests. Democrats lead in voter registration, and have a well-funded presidential candidate.

Yet Americans have not committed to Mr. Obama. Why?

Clearly, Mr. Obama's weakness on foreign policy is a factor. He has a knee-jerk preference for diplomacy with China, Europe and Russia over the security of the American people and our closest allies. He hasn't explained his shifting positions on Iraq and Iran, among other hot spots. And he felt compelled to make up for his experience gap with Mr. McCain by picking Sen. Joe Biden to be his running mate.

But here's the thing: It's not that Mr. Obama hasn't been specific enough in his governing plans. To the contrary, he has been very specific about his tax policy, health-care and energy proposals. It's that voters are paying attention and appear not to like what Candidate Obama is saying.

Mr. Obama has proposed a massive tax increase on investors, business owners, and the "wealthy." At a time when the American people rate the economy as the central issue of the campaign, a tax hike doesn't make a lot of political sense. Voters know that a tax hike won't help the economy.

Moreover, Mr. Obama's tax plans would directly or indirectly harm U.S. investors by raising the capital gains and dividend taxes. More than half of U.S. households are equity owners, so Mr. Obama's proposal risks alienating half the population.

To read more: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122039919493892941.html?mod=opinion_main_commentaries

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

MSNBC Matthews Retracts Tagging Powell and Rice "Showcase Appointments"

MSNBC Matthews Retracts Tagging Powell and Rice "Showcase Appointments"

Source: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/brad-wilmouth/2008/09/02/matthews-retracts-tagging-powell-rice-showcase-appointments

On Friday’s Hardball on MSNBC, the day after he labeled Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice as "showcase appointments," Chris Matthews retracted his comment, chalking it up to a bad choice of words, as he contended that he should have called Powell and Rice "high-profile" appointments, rather than "showcase" appointments. Matthews: "I should have said 'high-level, high-profile' appointments. They were genuine appointments. They were not tokens." And, although Matthews did seem to demean Rice on Thursday by referring to her position of Secretary of State as a "nice title," Matthews on Friday used a different tone: "Nobody on Earth believes that Condoleezza Rice is not this President's chief foreign policy advisor. Or nobody challenges their ability. Personally, I love the guy, although I wish he'd had opposed the war, General Powell. So I used the wrong word. I should have said 'high-level, high-profile,' not 'showcase,' because some people took that as 'token.' And damn it, I certainly didn’t mean that."

No Protest. No Nothing. I guess if he had said, Obama "showcase" Presidential Nominee..All hell would break loose.

Robert George: Who's Racist Now?

Robert George: Who's Racist Now?

Republicans get a bad rap on race. But, Democrats may be the ones who have shown their true colors this political season.

Republicans are trying to get their national nominating convention underway after deep worry about the effects of Hurricane Gustav, but the Grand Old Party faces other significant challenges, including an unpopular president and a country frustrated with both the economy and foreign policy. And a Democratic ticket—led by a charismatic African American that has enthralled much of the electorate—certainly doesn't help the GOP with its difficulties attracting black voters.
That said, the fractious primary contest between Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Sen. Barack Obama demonstrated that the Democrats have their own thorny problems with race. True, the party put on a unified front in Denver. Bill and Hillary Clinton both said the right things in endorsing and making the case for Barack Obama as the next president. But the primary season was rife with racial tension. When Hillary won both Kentucky and West Virginia in later contests, pundits focused on the apparent racial resistance to Obama from white, working-class voters. And Hillary herself made no secret of her intention to play on their fears.

Stereotypical "redneck" voters may be easy targets. But, the most caustic criticisms of Obama came from a trickier camp to explain: liberal intellectuals and white upper-middle-class Democrats who, in supporting Hillary, displayed overt, often racially infused contempt for Obama.

This hostility seems to go far beyond political rivalry. It seemed to suggest a sense of entitlement that this young black politician should not have the right to move up so fast, without first receiving the blessing of white appointed leaders. Women were especially fierce in their attacks in a way that suggested more than just gender-related grievances. Hillary and her supporters, women who themselves often facing the "not experienced enough" assertion, used the accusation as a weapon against Obama.

PUMAs ("Party Unity My Ass")—a group of disgruntled Hillary voters, primarily made up of Democratic, upper-middle-class, white women—arrived in Denver still aggrieved, some vowing to vote for McCain. Since Hillary Clinton formally ended her campaign, the PUMA Web site has been filled with angry, racially-tinged comments on how "vicious" the Obama campaign is. He is sarcastically described as the media's "golden boy"—with a dismissive "Oops, was that racist?" line added.

Former vice presidential nominee Geraldine Ferraro, of course, caused a major stir when she declared that the only reason Obama was leading the race, was, well, because of his race. On the last day of the convention, as Obama prepared his acceptance speech, Ferraro printed an op-ed piece explaining what Hillary supporters want: Recognition from Barack Obama that Hillary was a victim of media sexism—and to denounce it.

And professional white women were not the only ones letting their colors show. On the eve of Obama's nomination, Hillary supporter Sean Wilentz took 3,000 words in Newsweek to continue undermining Barack Obama's qualifications. His main complaint? That Obama hasn't demonstrated enough "substance" and is primarily just "style." Funny, considering Obama issued a huge policy book detailing all of his positions. Indeed, if you count Obama's seven years in the Illinois state senate, he's been in elective office longer than Clinton.

Another formerly hardcore, anti-Bush Democrat, blogger Larry Johnson, was largely responsible for spreading the Michelle Obama "Whitey tape" urban legend earlier this year. Ironically, it was eventually conservative-leaning blogs (including, Michelle Malkin, National Review and yours truly) that explained why the tape's existence was highly doubtful.

Throughout the fighting, it has seemed clear that for many of Hillary's well-heeled white supporters, their attacks were about more than simply, "What's bad for my candidate's opponent is good for my candidate." It seemed very important that Obama be brought down by a racially-connected scandal (as if the Rev. Jeremiah Wright wasn't enough).

There are often sour grapes left over from any bitter primary contest, and there will always be those who cross lines to signal discontent. I voted Libertarian in 2004 rather than voting for President Bush. But what is being launched at Obama from these supposedly Democratic, supposedly liberal venues is quite unusual. Is it racially motivated? With the exception of Ferraro's statements, one cannot say for sure.

But, if these otherwise left-leaning partisan Democrats continue their attacks on Obama—to the extent that they could cause him to lose the election—one wonders what African Americans as a group might think. Many Democrats will look at the Republican Convention this week and shake their heads at the lack of diversity. But in the GOP, blacks have already assessed the pockets of racial unease within the party. Black Democrats got more than a surprise or two this year.

Robert A. George is an editorial writer with the New York Post.