· Steele GOP’s albatross?
· CALPERS Half Trillion in Hole: Stanford
· How Senate stacks up
· Queen of England Visits New York
· November Fur Already Flying.
· Feds Stiff Local Business Owners and Taxpayers
· Home Prices to Drop Another 10%
· “Kill Switch Bill” Alarms 1st Amendment Folks
· Bilderberg Report Sizzling
· Demand for Repeal of Obamacare Growing
· Another Report of Hezbollah Crossing Mexican Border
Republican Senate nominee Carly Fiorina, a breast cancer survivor, is recovering from her last planned reconstructive surgery. She is challenging Barbara Boxer.
There is a lot of talk that Michael Steele is a albatross around the neck of the GOP. The word albatross is sometimes used to mean an encumbrance, or a wearisome burden. It is an allusion to Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poem The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (1798).
In the poem, an albatross starts to follow a ship — being followed by an albatross was generally considered an omen of good luck. However, the titular mariner shoots the albatross with a crossbow, which is regarded as an act that will curse the ship (which indeed suffers terrible mishaps). To punish him, his companions induce him to wear the dead albatross around his neck indefinitely (until they all die from the curse, as it happens). Thus the albatross can be both an omen of good or bad luck, as well as a metaphor for a burden to be carried (as penance).
The symbolism used in the Coleridge poem is its highlight. For example:
Ah ! well a-day ! what evil looks
Had I from old and young !
Instead of the cross, the Albatross
About my neck was hung.
Republican Party Chair Steele’s gaff is confusing strategies for Fall. Democrats and Republicans are framing the elections in starkly different terms, with GOP strategists painting it as a national referendum on President Barack Obama whose jobs approbval is in free fall, and Democrats are working feverishly to make all politics local. They are encouraged by Steele’s harebrained comments.
Some are calling for Sarah Palin to replace Steele – apparently not to contain the controversy. My bet is Steele stays at least through the November elections.
A Stanford University study finds that California’s public employee retirement fund (CALPERS) has increased 2,000% in ten years and will be a half trillion dollars in debt within a few years.
CalPers charges the study’s method is flawed and there is no need to worry and it has $300 billion in reserves.
Nevertheless some employee unions have taken voluntary steps to change the way CALPERS is funded in an effort to reduce risks to its members and taxpayers.
As of July 6th $169 million has been spent on California’s Governor’s race including: $110 million by Whitman, $32 million by Brown and the rest by Poisner. Tens of millions will be spent by “independent expenditure committees” and it will get really nasty.
Arkansas’ Blanche Lincoln is the only incumbent senator currently projected to lose a seat. The other three are open-seat races following retirements by Democratic incumbents.
At the moment, outside of the Toss-Up states, no Republican-held seats appear headed for the Democratic column.
Six of the 10 Toss-up states are currently Democratic seats, while four are held by the GOP.
Among the six Democratic seats in the Toss-Up category, three are open seat races (Colorado, Illinois and Pennsylvania), and the Republicans have a slight edge in the most recent polling for each of those seats. As for Democratic incumbents in the Toss-Up category, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada finds himself trailing in the latest polling; Patty Murray of Washington is tied, and Russ Feingold of Wisconsin holds a very slight edge over a little-known opponent.
Richard Burr of North Carolina is the only Republican incumbent in the Toss-Up category. He has led the race for most of the year but now finds himself tied with the winner of a Democratic primary runoff. Other Republican seats in play at the moment are in Florida, Missouri and Ohio. In Florida, Republican Marco Rubio is tied with former Republican Charlie Crist. The GOP candidates have slight leads in Missouri and Ohio.
Put it all together, and Republicans are slightly ahead in six of the 10 Toss-up states. Three of the races are tied, and the Democratic candidate has the lead in one. This suggests that if the election were held today, the GOP would be favored to pick up a few more than the four seats already moving in their direction. However, it is impossible to know how these races will look in November.
But, it seems “safe” to say Democrats can probably count on having at least 49 Senate seats after Election Day. So, it’s going to be very close in the U. S. Senate.
The Congressional Budget Office says Obama’s deficit will be 62% of Gross Domestic Product this coming year. GDP is the sum of all goods and services produced by everyone and everything in America.
New Yorkers gave Queen Elizabeth the royal treatment Tuesday The 84-year-old British monarch returned to New York for the first time in nearly 35 years, for a whirlwind visit that took her to Ground Zero and the United Nations for an 8-minute speech.
A massive power failure in Toronto - that included the hotel where the royals were staying in - marred their final full day in Canada.
Prince Philip was presenting the Duke of Edinburgh Awards for youths doing community service when the lights went out at the Royal York Hotel. He continued through the ceremony in the darkened room, even joking with the audience.
The royals were back in Britain in time to sleep in her own bed Tuesday night..
Royal watchers report that British austerity has reached the Queen who reportedly prowls the palace clicking off lights and turning down thermostats and favors wearing a warm coat to ward off the chill.
After being embarrassed and snubbed on his last visit to the U. S. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu was back with Obama Tuesday in what turned into a public puff session. Hanging over the visit was Obama’s twice made secret promises to Saudi Arabia of Israeli concessions in exchange for the Saud’s pressuring the Taliban.
Four years after Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) lost the white vote by 17 percentage points, Obama lost it by 12, according to exit polls. While the 2008 gains were generally attributed to Obama’s strength with young voters — he won by 10 points among whites 18 to 29 years old — he managed to improve on Kerry’s showing with white voters across every age demographic.
Fast-forward to today. With the November midterm elections less than four months away, Obama’s standing among white voters has collapsed– leading some party strategists to fret that the president’s erosion — and the party’s — could adversely affect Democrats’ chances of holding on to their House and Senate majorities.
“Since in the past House elections white voters tended to represent the independent vote, [the midterms] will surely be devastating for Democrats running in an election that will be a referendum on the Obama agenda,” predicted one senior Democratic operative who closely tracks House races.
In Washington Post-ABC polling, Obama’s approval rating among white voters has dropped from better than 60 percent to just above 40 percent. In a June poll, 46 percent of white voters under age 40 approved of how Obama was doing, compared with just 39 percent of whites 65 and older.
The latest NBC-Wall Street Journal poll reveals that Obama’s standing among white voters is remarkably similar to that of President George W. Bush at this same time two years ago.
In the June 2008 NBC-WSJ survey, 37 percent of white men and 26 percent of white women approved of the job Bush was doing. In the June 2010 poll, an identical 37 percent of white men approved of Obama’s handling of his job, as did 35 percent of white women.
Maybe it is even more important that big Wall Street donors are no longer financing the Democrat Congressional Campaign Committees with contributions from the world’s financial capital down 65 percent from two years ago.
A running average of expected November general election outcomes shows a 50-50 chance Republicans will win more than the 40 seats needed to become a House majority. Betting is a shift of 8 Senate seats with ten needed for a majority.
Americans continue to overwhelmingly embrace the ideals articulated in the Declaration of Independence. Eighty-eight percent (88%) believe we are endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights” and 68% believe that “governments derive their only just authority from the consent of the governed.” Fifty-four percent (54%) believe that the United States is truly a land of “liberty and justice for all.”
No one is surprised by the high estimates of effluent running from Capitoil Hill and the White House nor that the Feds demanded something be done to treat the 3 billion gallons of untreated waste water flowing into the Potomac River. In classic fashion the Feds insisted on a $3.1 billion bond to fix the pollution. But, now the federal government contends it is exempt from paying it back and is defaulting on a $2.1 billion billion.
Local businesses must pay their assessment of face impoundment or property and assets. Some say the Federal government should face similar actions.
The effluent embarrassment started when D.C. Water, formerly known as WASA, is mandated to improve the system by a federal consent decree it agreed to in 2003 after being sued by the Environmental Protection Agency and environmental advocates. Usually the city’s wastewater is cleaned at the utility’s Blue Plains treatment plant, but because its sewers combine rainwater with raw sewage, heavy rains can send untreated waste into the city’s rivers.
The federal government is legally exempt from paying taxes on its land, and in April attorneys from the Government Accountability Office wrote D.C. Water to say that the new charges “appear to be a tax on property owners” from which it is exempt. It disagrees saying it is a fee for service and the whole gooey mess will likely wind up before the Supreme Court – ironically taxpayers loose no m,atter what happens.
The Democratic National Committee last week launched what it dubbed its Accountability Project, which invites supporters all over the country to record Republican candidates’ public events and send in their video.
Last week Cal Governor candidate Meg Whitman supporters were found out recording goings on at a California Nurses Association event where she was roundly blasted by CNA.
The price of houses in the United States will drop even more, says Barry Ritholtz, founder of Fusion IQ, the investment research firm according to a Moneynews.com article..
Current prices are still way too high because the decline didn’t reach the “fair value” level compared to rent and income levels, he told Yahoo Finance TechTicker.
During the next 12 months, the price of houses will fall by another 10 percent, Ritholtz said.
The amount of houses compared to the number of buyers is still skewed even if houses are now more “affordable,” he said.
The housing bubble has caused an $8 trillion negative wealth effect, said Howard Davidowitz of Davidowitz & Associates.
“I mean this is a complete disaster and that’s why we are going to have a double dip. We’re guaranteed a double dip in housing,” he said.
Potential home buyers don’t need to fear the market will be “running away” from them, said Dan Alpert, managing director of Westwood Capital.
“The affordability is pretty much here to stay. I think we’re going to be in an era of very flat pricing and very, very cheap money for a very long time,” he said.
Home prices will fall at least another 5 percent to 8 percent, Alpert predicts.
Plutocracy (ploo-TOK-ruh-see) noun:1. Government by the wealthy. 2. A country or state governed by the wealthy people. 3. Wealthy ruling class. Etymology From pluto- (wealth) + -cracy (rule). From Greek ploutokratia, from ploutos (wealth, overflowing riches). Ultimately from the Indo-European root pleu- (to flow), that is also the source of flow, float, flit, fly, flutter, pulmonary, pneumonia, pluvial, and fletcher. Usage “California is much closer to a plutocracy than a grass-roots democracy. It takes lots of money to draft initiatives, get them on the ballot and run a media campaign for or against them.”Bruce E. Cain; Five Myths About California Politics; The Washington Post; Jun 6, 2010.
Senator Joe Leiberman (I-Conn.) cosponsorship with Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) of the so-called “Kill Switch bill” that would allow the President alone the power to shut down the Internet in “a time of emergency” has the 1st Amendment crowd climbing the walls. The idea is that the cyberwar weapon needs to be defended against, and on the surface that has some justification given recent incidents.
Lieberman’s explanation that “Right now China—the government—can disconnect parts of its Internet in a case of war. We need to have the ability to do that, too,” was unfortunate. China also censors the Internet—every day—to stifle the free flow of information… because it can. Therein lies the rub.
Because information can no longer be controlled through a handful of media outlets, more and more people have almost unlimited access, and that delights the 1st Amendment bunch.
But, if the U.S. government is gearing up for a crackdown on the information flow—or at least to have that ability when it decides or the President alone decides — that is troubling.
Plus, the Federal Trade Commission recently proposed a plan—called a Drudge Tax—to tax websites and electronic devices in order to bail out failing newspapers, since that didn’t fly. So, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) now says it wants to control prices and set rules for what traffic Internet Service Providers (ISPs) must carry defacto giving it power over what will or can and cannot be provided.
Back in 1776, Americans were fighting to escape British rule, these days we’re fighting to escape British oil. — Leno
Conspiracy zealots are delighted to giddiness over the reported outcomes of the June 4-6 Bilderberg 2010 conference in Spain.
They predict some astonishing things are coming soon including:
· a new push from global climate “science” but it is going to be global COOLING;
· limits on hitherto unfettered social networking and cyber technology (this has already started;
· a world food crisis of some kind will manifest itself;
· medical science will be a hot topic—perhaps another “medical emergency” created by Big Pharma and hyped by the World Health Organization (WHO), much as the pig flu epidemic of 2009 was. And the solution will enrich select drug companies and WHO researchers;
· Financial reform was a hot topic (already there’s been talk in Congress of propping up the International Monetary Fund, and a move toward a new global currency is in the works);
· perhaps efforts to prolong the economic crisis to open the way for a global economic governance.
· Energy (the BP spill dominated discussions);
· Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran (were plans for the coming strike hammered out?) and
· relations between Europe and the United States.
Bilderberg started in 1952 and is where the movers and shakers in government, politics, finance, industry, labor, education and communications—meet in secret for “informal and off-the-record discussion about topics of current concern especially in the fields of foreign affairs and the international economy.”
These are the New World Order folks.
For 53 years there has been a strict news and information embargo even though media luminaries attended this and most meetings.
Cap and Trade, open borders, and the global small arms treaty, a world currency are Bilderberg brainchildren.
If the largely clandestinely obtained reports are even partially true hold on to your hats. After all the rah-rahs, glad handing and back slapping in Spain, the globalists are once again amped up and the push for global governance is on at least partly because in Obama they appear to have perhaps their most powerful ally ever.
Obama and Biden are calling this the “summer of recovery” but a large majority of American’s disagree pointing to high un and underemployment amid increasing fears that the country will backslid into an even deeper pit. Obama was blistered aslasy week’s G-20 economic summit in Canada when he was repudiated by almost every country represented when he called for more borrowing and spending s they demnanded strong defict cutting measures.
Sixty percent (60%) of voters nationwide favor repeal of the recently passed health care law, including 49% who Strongly Favor repeal.
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 36% oppose repeal. That figure includes 24% who are Strongly Opposed.
Forty-three percent (43%) believe repeal would be good for the nation’s economy. Twenty-seven percent (27%) believe repeal would be bad for the economy, while 20% say it would have no impact. Political Class voters strongly believe repeal would be bad for the economy, while most Mainstream Americans think repeal would help the economy.
Despite the ongoing support for repeal, just 41% believe the law is even somewhat likely to be repealed. Forty-five percent (45%) say repeal is unlikely. In April, however, 51% considered repeal unlikely.
The current figures show 13% consider repeal Very Likely, while 10% say it is Not at all Likely. In April, those figures were 11% and 18% respectively.
Eighty-one percent (81%) of Republicans and 65% of voters not affiliated with either major party favor repeal; 56% of Democrats oppose it. Part of the doubt about the likelihood of repeal may come from the fact that Democrats could still control Congress after November. Part of it also may come from skepticism that Republicans would be any different. Recent polling showed that just 42% think there would be a noticeable change if Republicans win control of Congress. Republican voters
The United States Post Office will post a $7 billion deficit this year and wants another increase in postage rates despite indication it is literally pricing itself out of business. Critics point to the newest contract with the postal worker’s union calling for $100,000 yearly cost for a letter carrier.
On the day Obama’s DOJ announced a lawsuit against Arizon’a immigration law a Hezbollah terror cell may be operating among drugs cartels around the U.S.-Mexican border, announced U.S. Republican National Committee Rep. Sue Myrick, according to a Fox News report.
Myrick requested that U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano create a special team to further investigate the potential problem and threat.
The Republican representative referenced several incidents that show evidence of Hezbollah’s efforts to infiltrate the U.S. region with the aid of Mexican drug cartel gangs.
“It is vital we know what is happening on our border, especially as crime and violence continue to rise there and as terrorist plots and threats are increasing inside the U.S.,” quoted the Fox News report.
Hezbollah (Arabic: حزب الله ḥizbu-illāh(i), literally “Party of God“) is a Shi’a Islamist political and paramilitary organisation based in Lebanon. The USA and numerous other countries label it a terrorist organization.
Rep. Bill Delahunt (D) Massachusetts wants a national internet sales tax to be charged on all internet sales. Advocate for lower taxes and retailers including Amazon.com and eBay. said: “At a time when unemployment rates are high and small businesses across the country are closing shop, we are confident that Congress will protect small Internet retailers and the consumers they serve from another Internet tax scheme.”