Archive for September, 2011

Obama’s Gungate: Operation Fast and Furious–The Murders Continue–Time For Special Prosecutor!–Videos

Posted on September 30, 2011. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Business, Communications, Computers, Crime, Culture, Diasters, Drug Cartels, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, government, government spending, history, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, People, Philosophy, Pistols, Politics, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Rifles, Talk Radio, Taxes, Technology, Transportation, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Sheriff Babeu Says ATF Accomplice To Murder

“Fast And Furious” Just Might Be President Obama’s Watergate

ATF agent blows the whistle on the U.S. government running GUNS into Mexico !

Fast & Furious Round 2: Nightly News Report 09/27/11

Issa & Gosar: Fast & Furious Investigation Continues

Fast and Furious Whistleblower Interview Operation Gun Walker – Video http://www.RightFace.us

Operation Fast and Furious 1- 13

Operation Fast and Furious 2- 13

Operation Fast and Furious 3- 13

Operation Fast and Furious 4- 13

Operation Fast and Furious 5- 13

Operation Fast and Furious 6- 13

Operation Fast and Furious 7- 13

Operation Fast and Furious 8- 13

Operation Fast and Furious 9- 13

Operation Fast and Furious 10- 13

Operation Fast and Furious 11- 13

Operation Fast and Furious 12- 13

Operation Fast and Furious 13- 13

Issa on CNN: Obama Administration Stonewalling Public Accountability for Fast & Furious

Issa on Fox News: Americans Deserve Accountability for Deaths by Operation Fast & Furious

Issa on Fox Biz Gives the Latest on Investigations of Fast & Furious, Obama Admin Green Energy Deals

Background Articles and Videos

ATF Enabling Illegal US Gun Traffic to Mexico!!!

Whistleblower ATF Agent John Dodson Exposes Deadly “Operation Gunrunner”

ATF Director Tells Congressmen Dept Of Justice Is Obstructing “Fast & Furious” Gun Running Probe

ATF Fires ‘Fast and Furious’ Whistleblower

Rep. Issa: Holder ‘Absolutely’ Knew About Fast & Furious Earlier Than He Testified

Obama Orders Launched Fast and Furious

Obama Snubs Subpoena for ATF ‘Project Gunrunner’ Documents

Fast and Furious Agents Promoted by Obama Administration; Project Gunrunner Promotions

“Fast And Furious” Just Might Be President Obama’s Watergate

Frank Miniter

“…Why a gunrunning scandal codenamed “Fast and Furious,” a program run secretly by the U.S. government that sent thousands of firearms over an international border and directly into the hands of criminals, hasn’t been pursued by an army of reporters all trying to be the next Bob Woodward or Carl Bernstein is a story in itself.

But the state of modern journalism aside, this scandal is so inflammatory few realize that official records show the current director  of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), B. Todd Jones — yes the individual the Obama administration brought in to replace ATF Director Kenneth Melson Aug. 30 in an effort to deflect congressional criticism — also has questions to answer about his involvement in this gunrunning scandal.

Fast and Furious was an operation so cloak-and-dagger Mexican authorities weren’t even notified that thousands of semi-automatic firearms were being sold to people in Arizona thought to have links to Mexican drug cartels. According to ATF whistleblowers, in 2009 the U.S. government began instructing gun storeowners to break the law by selling  firearms to suspected criminals. ATF agents then, again according to testimony by ATF agents turned whistleblowers, were ordered not to intercept the smugglers but rather to let the guns “walk” across the U.S.-Mexican border and into the hands of Mexican drug-trafficking organizations. …”

“…Given all the politics and the cover up that even the former ATF director says has occurred, could operation Fast and Furious have been about anything other than pushing for new gun-control laws? And given all of this obfuscation from the Obama dministration, isn’t this scandal comparable to the cover up that surrounded Watergate? After all,  both administrations forgot that America is a country that reveres its freedom of the press and that in America officers speak out when misguided policies get cops killed. Here mothers testify before Congress  when they find out a secret government program, and a stupid one at that, got their son killed.

Not that morality ends at the American border. To stress this point, Rep. Issa held a conference call with journalists on September 21 in which he said Marisela Morales, Mexico’s attorney general, is reporting that at least 200 Mexican deaths can now be traced to weapons from the Fast and Furious program.

And so the investigation and the bloody aftermath continue….

http://www.forbes.com/sites/realspin/2011/09/28/fast-and-furious-just-might-be-president-obamas-watergate/

New Fast and Furious docs released by White House

By Sharyl Attkisson

“…Late Friday, the White House turned over new documents in the Congressional investigation into the ATF “Fast and Furious” gunwalking scandal.

The documents show extensive communications between then-ATF Special Agent in Charge of the Phoenix office Bill Newell – who led Fast and Furious – and then-White House National Security Staffer Kevin O’Reilly. Emails indicate the two also spoke on the phone. Such detailed, direct communications between a local ATF manager in Phoenix and a White House national security staffer has raised interest among Congressional investigators looking into Fast and Furious. Newell has said he and O’Reilly are long time friends.

Newly-released White House documents (pdf)

ATF agents say that in Fast and Furious, their agency allowed thousands of assault rifles and other weapons to be sold to suspected traffickers for Mexican drug cartels. At least two of the guns turned up at the murder scene of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry last December.

ATF Manager says he shared Fast and Furious with the White House

The email exchanges span a little over a month last summer. They discuss ATF’s gun trafficking efforts along the border including the controversial Fast and Furious case, though not by name. The emails to and from O’Reilly indicate more than just a passing interest in the Phoenix office’s gun trafficking cases. They do not mention specific tactics such as “letting guns walk.” …”

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-31727_162-20114184-10391695.html

September 30, 2011

Operation Fast and Furious: The Scandal that Can No Longer be Denied

Roger Aronoff

“…Cooper’s reporter on this story, Drew Griffin, tried to explain a possible motive for Fast and Furious. He said that “the operation makes no sense.” So in attempting to explain it, he invoked the usual bogeymen. “So what’s the real purpose?,” asked Griffin. “The lack of sense, the apparent cover-up has opened the door now for these conspiracy theorists. And you got to follow this. They believe this was part of a convoluted plan for the Obama administration and the attorney general to actually increase the level of violence on the Mexican border with assault weapons purchased in the U.S. in an apparent attempt to rekindle interest in an assault weapons ban. As wacky as that may sound, I must tell you that theory is gaining traction, not just among the second amendment crowd, because this operation makes no other sense.”

Griffin is correct that such theories are out there. But until some independent entity can get to the bottom of this, hopefully with the cooperation of the Obama administration rather than the stonewalling and obstruction that has characterized their response up to now, the reasons for the operation might remain theoretical. Let’s see if the cover-up proves worse than the crimes. …”

http://www.familysecuritymatters.org/publications/id.10477/pub_detail.asp

Secret recordings raise new questions in ATF ‘Gunwalker’ operation

By

Sharyl Attkisson

“…Law enforcement sources and others close to the Congressional investigation say the Justice Department’s Inspector General obtained the audio tapes several months ago as part of its investigation into Fast and Furious.

Then, the sources say for some reason the Inspector General passed the tapes along to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Arizona: a subject in the investigation. It’s unclear why the Inspector General, who is supposed to investigate independently, would turn over evidence to an entity that is itself under investigation.

A spokesman from the Office of the Inspector General today said, “The OIG officially provided the United States Attorney’s Office with a copy of the recordings in question so that the USAO could consider them in connection with the government’s disclosure obligations in the pending criminal prosecutions of the gun traffickers. Prior to receiving the tapes, the OIG made clear that we would have to provide a copy of the recordings to the United States Attorney’s Office because they would need to review them to satisfy any legal disclosure obligations.” …”

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-31727_162-20108240-10391695.html

Firearms from ATF sting linked to 11 more violent crimes

“…By Richard A. Serrano, Washington Bureau August 17, 2011

Reporting from Washington—

Firearms from the ATF’s Operation Fast and Furious weapons trafficking investigation turned up at the scenes of at least 11 violent crimes in the U.S., as well as at a Border Patrol agent’s slaying in southern Arizona last year, the Justice Department has acknowledged to Congress.

The department did not provide details about the crimes. But The Times has learned that they occurred in several Arizona cities, including Phoenix, where Fast and Furious was managed, as well as in El Paso, where a total of 42 weapons from the operation were seized at two crime scenes.

The new numbers, which expand the scope of the danger the program posed to U.S. citizens over a 14-month period, are contained in a letter that Justice Department officials turned over to the Senate Judiciary Committee last month. …”

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-atf-guns-20110817,0,7742514.story

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Cell Phone Bugging and Tracking–Videos

Posted on September 26, 2011. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Computers, Crime, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Investments, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, People, Philosophy, Physics, Politics, Psychology, Public Sector, Raves, Regulations, Resources, Science, Security, Taxes, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , |

Constitutional Controversy Brewing Over Phone Tracker

Cell Phone Tracking by the Government

Tapping your cell phone

Is Your Cell Phone Bugged?

Protect Yourself from Cell Phone Spying Robert Siciliano www.IDTheftSecurity.com

CELL PHONE  (FBI can listen to you when phone is turned off)

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Herman Cain Wins Florida Straw Poll: The Cain Mutiny–Videos

Posted on September 26, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, College, Communications, Demographics, Economics, Education, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Inflation, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Private Sector, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Resources, Security, Strategy, Talk Radio, Taxes, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , |

Herman Cain addressing the Presidency 5 Republican Party of Florida meeting in Orlando. Credit AP


Florida “Presidency 5″ Straw Poll Results Announced: Herman Cain Wins Big

Herman Cain Wins Florida Straw Poll!

Ron Paul Supporter on Herman Cain’s P5 Victory

Who Is Herman Cain?

Herman Cain’s Stunning Victory in FL Straw Poll While Rick Perry in Deep Trouble

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Herman Cain “We’re Not Gonna Get A Different Outcome Until We Change The Leadership”

Ron Paul Florida CPAC Speech

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Herman Cain, Republican candidate for president, won the Florida straw poll with 37 percent of the 2,657 delegates votes cast. Cain’s total votes were more than double the combined votes cast for Texas Gov. Rick Perry with 15 percent and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney with 14 percent.

Cain also beat the rest of the crowded Republican field including former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorium with 10 percent, Texas Congressman Ron Paul with 10 percent, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich with 8 percent, former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman with 2 percent, and Minnesota Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann with 1 percent.

While many Republicans came to the Republican President 5 event in Orlando to vote for either Perry and Romney, the two leading Republican candidates according to national polls, Cain won as a direct result of his performance in the Sept. 22 debate and his inspiring speech to the Republican delegates attending the Faith and Freedom Coalition and Conservative Political Action Conference meetings culminating in the Sept. 24 straw poll.

During the debates, Cain’s signature policy recommendation has been his 999 tax reform proposal. It would replace the existing complex federal income taxation system and payroll taxes with a 9 percent business flat tax, a 9 percent individual flat tax and a 9 percent national sales tax. Until the Republican debates, Cain had been a highly visible advocate of the FairTax bill. Prior to supporting the FairTax, Cain had supported a flat tax advocated by 1996 presidential candidate Steve Forbes.

The FairTax replaces all federal income and payroll taxes with a progressive national retail sales consumption tax, a prebate to ensure no American pays federal taxes on spending up to the poverty level, dollar-for-dollar federal revenue neutrality and, through companion legislation, the repeal of the 16th Amendment, according to Americans for Fair Taxation.

Apparently his political advisers convinced him not to make defense of the FairTax part of his political campaign for president. In my opinion, Cain made a serious mistake when he walked away from the FairTax and its supporters and instead went with a hybrid flat tax and sales tax. Either a flat tax or the FairTax would be better than Cain’s 999 hybrid flat and sales taxes.

Cain’s experience includes being the chief executive officer of Godfather’s Pizza, CEO of the National Restaurant Association, chairman and member of the board of directors to the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, syndicated newspaper columnist distributed by North Star Writers Group, Fox Business commenter and talk radio show host of the “Herman Cain Show,” in Atlanta.

Despite efforts by the national media to focus attention on the leading Republican establishment candidates, Perry and Romney, there is clearly no decisive front-runner among the Republican and Tea Party base.

On Sept. 18, Ron Paul won the California Republican straw poll winning 44 percent of the 833 votes cast. Perry was second with 29 percent, Romney third with 8 percent, and Bachmann fourth with 7 percent. The remaining Republican candidates including Cain received 2 percent or less of the votes casts. Paul had made several speeches before the Republican Party state convention prior to the vote.

Perry’s popularity is rapidly declining due to his poor performance in three debates. The Texas governor’s position on illegal immigration is not resonating with the Republican base. In particular Perry’s support for giving children of illegal immigrants reduced tuition to state colleges and universities does not set well with the American people.

The Republican base simply wants the immigration laws enforced and no amnesty, education, medical and welfare spending for illegal aliens. Such expenditures are rewarding illegal activity at the expense of American citizens. Perry was booed when he said in the last debate, “If you say that we should not educate children who have come into the state for no other reason than they’ve been brought there, by no fault of their own, I don’t think you have a heart.” This is a classic Democratic Party emotional response to the illegal immigration issue that is costing the American people hundreds of billions of dollars and millions of jobs. Perry’s major Achilles’ heel is the illegal immigration issue.

The only polls that really count are the ones on the primary and caucus election dates.

Here is a partial list of the early primary and caucus dates for 2012:

Jan. 31: Florida (Likely to change)

Feb. 6: Iowa caucuses

Feb. 7: Minnesota GOP caucuses, Missouri, New Jersey

Feb. 14: New Hampshire

Feb. 18: Nevada caucuses

Feb. 21: Wisconsin

Feb. 28: South Carolina, Arizona, Michigan

March 6 (Super Tuesday): Massachusetts, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Colorado caucuses, Idaho GOP caucuses, Minnesota Democratic caucuses

If you want to vote in the Texas Republican or Democratic primaries you must be registered to vote as a Republican or Democrat at least 30 days before the March 6 primary date.

By March 7, 2012, the American people will have narrowed the Republican field down to two or three candidates.

In my opinion, the three remaining candidates will be Mitt Romney, Ron Paul and Herman Cain. The other candidates will have dropped out by then because they do not have the money, organization or message to pursue a national campaign.

The winner in 1979 of the first Republican Party of Florida straw poll was Ronald Reagan. He was running against the Republican establishment candidates George H.W. Bush, Robert Dole and Howard Baker and four other GOP candidates.

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Ron Paul Right On The War On Terrorism And Government Interventionism Abroad–Blowback Killing Americans–Videos

Posted on September 24, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Dirty Bomb, Economics, Education, Energy, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Inflation, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, Nuclear, Nuclear Power, People, Philosophy, Politics, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Security, Talk Radio, Taxes, Technology, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

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C.I.A. Blowback – Ron Paul

Chalmers argues that the age of the “American Empire” is nearing its end.

Author of Blowback, The Sorrows of Empire, and Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic, Chalmers Johnson has literally written the book on the concept of American hegemony. A former naval officer and consultant to the C.I.A., he now serves as professor emeritus of UC San Diego. As co-founder and president of the Japan Policy Research Institute, Mr. Johnson also continues to promote public education about Asia’s role in the international community. In this exclusive interview, you will find out why the practice of empire building is, by no means, a thing of the past. As the United States continues to expand its military force around the globe, the consequences are being suffered by each and every one of us. (Written by Richard Castro)

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Chalmers Johnson on CIA Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire (1/6) (2000)

Chalmers Johnson on CIA Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire (2/6) (2000)

Chalmers Johnson on CIA Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire (3/6) (2000)

Chalmers Johnson on CIA Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire (4/6) (2000)

Chalmers Johnson on CIA Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire (5/6) (2000)

Chalmers Johnson on CIA Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire (6/6) (2000)

Chalmers Johnson

“…Chalmers Ashby Johnson (August 6, 1931 – November 20, 2010)[1] was an American author and professor emeritus of the University of California, San Diego. He served in the Korean War, was a consultant for the CIA from 1967–1973, and chaired the Center for Chinese Studies at the University of California, Berkeley from 1967 to 1972.[2] He was also president and co-founder of the Japan Policy Research Institute (now based at the University of San Francisco), an organization promoting public education about Japan and Asia.[3] He wrote numerous books including, most recently, three examinations of the consequences of American Empire: Blowback, The Sorrows of Empire, and Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic.

Johnson was born in 1931 in Phoenix, Arizona. He earned a B.A. degree in Economics in 1953 and an M.A. and a Ph.D. in political science in 1957 and 1961 respectively. Both of his advanced degrees were from the University of California, Berkeley. Johnson met his wife Sheila, a 19 year-old junior at Berkeley, in 1956, and they were married in Reno, Nevada in May, 1957.[4]

During the Korean War, Johnson served as a naval officer in Japan.[5] He was the communications officer on a ship (the LST 883) “tasked with ferrying Chinese prisoners of war from South Korea back to North Korean ports.”[4] He taught political science at the University of California from 1962 until he retired from teaching in 1992. He was best known early in his career for his scholarship on the subjects of China and Japan.[6]

Johnson set the agenda for ten or fifteen years in social science scholarship on China with his book on peasant nationalism. His book MITI and the Japanese Miracle, on the Japanese Ministry of International Trade and Industry was the preëminent study of the country’s development and created the subfield of what could be called the political economy of development. He coined the term “developmental state”. As a public intellectual, he first led the “Japan revisionists” who critiqued American neoliberal economics with Japan as a model; their arguments faded from view as the Japanese economy stagnated in the mid-90s and beyond. During this period, Johnson acted as a consultant for the Office of National Estimates, part of the CIA, contributing to analysis of China and Maoism.[7]

Johnson was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1976. He served as Director of the Center for Chinese Studies (1967–72[2]) and Chair of the Political Science Department at Berkeley, and held a number of important academic posts in area studies. He was a strong believer in the importance of language and historical training for doing serious research. Late in his career he became well known as a critic of “rational choice” approaches, particularly in the study of Japanese politics and political economy.

Johnson is perhaps today best known as a sharp critic of American imperialism. His book Blowback (2000) won a prize in 2001 from the Before Columbus Foundation, and was re-issued in an updated version in 2004. Sorrows of Empire, published in 2004, updated the evidence and argument from Blowback for the post-9/11 environment, and Nemesis concludes the trilogy. Johnson was featured as an expert talking head in the Eugene Jarecki-directed film Why We Fight,[3] which won the 2005 Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival. In the past, Johnson has also written for the Los Angeles Times, the London Review of Books, Harper’s Magazine, and The Nation.

The Blowback series

Johnson believed that the enforcement of American hegemony over the world constitutes a new form of global empire. Whereas traditional empires maintained control over subject peoples via colonies, since World War II the US has developed a vast system of hundreds of military bases around the world where it has strategic interests. A long-time Cold Warrior, he applauded the dissolution of the Soviet Union: “I was a cold warrior. There’s no doubt about that. I believed the Soviet Union was a genuine menace. I still think so.”[8] But at the same time he experienced a political awakening after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, noting that instead of demobilizing its armed forces, the US accelerated its reliance on military solutions to problems both economic and political. The result of this militarism (as distinct from actual domestic defense) is more terrorism against the US and its allies, the loss of core democratic values at home, and an eventual disaster for the American economy. Of four books he wrote on this topic, the first three are referred to as The Blowback Trilogy:

  • Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire

Chalmers Johnson summarized the intent of Blowback in the final chapter of Nemesis.

“In Blowback, I set out to explain why we are hated around the world. The concept “blowback” does not just mean retaliation for things our government has done to and in foreign countries. It refers to retaliation for the numerous illegal operations we have carried out abroad that were kept totally secret from the American public. This means that when the retaliation comes — as it did so spectacularly on September 11, 2001 — the American public is unable to put the events in context. So they tend to support acts intended to lash out against the perpetrators, thereby most commonly preparing the ground for yet another cycle of blowback. In the first book in this trilogy, I tried to provide some of the historical background for understanding the dilemmas we as a nation confront today, although I focused more on Asia — the area of my academic training — than on the Middle East.”[9]
  • The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic

Chalmers Johnson summarizes the intent of The Sorrows of Empire in the final chapter of Nemesis.

The Sorrows of Empire was written during the American preparations for and launching of the invasions and occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq. I began to study our continuous military buildup since World War II and the 737 military bases we currently maintain in other people’s countries. This empire of bases is the concrete manifestation of our global hegemony, and many of the blowback-inducing wars we have conducted had as their true purpose the sustaining and expanding of this network. We do not think of these overseas deployments as a form of empire; in fact, most Americans do not give them any thought at all until something truly shocking, such as the treatment of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, brings them to our attention. But the people living next door to these bases and dealing with the swaggering soldiers who brawl and sometimes rape their women certainly think of them as imperial enclaves, just as the people of ancient Iberia or nineteenth-century India knew that they were victims of foreign colonization.”[9]
  • Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic

Chalmers Johnson summarizes the intent of the book Nemesis.

“In Nemesis, I have tried to present historical, political, economic, and philosophical evidence of where our current behavior is likely to lead. Specifically, I believe that to maintain our empire abroad requires resources and commitments that will inevitably undercut our domestic democracy and in the end produce a military dictatorship or its civilian equivalent. The founders of our nation understood this well and tried to create a form of government – a republic – that would prevent this from occurring. But the combination of huge standing armies, almost continuous wars, military Keynesianism, and ruinous military expenses have destroyed our republican structure in favor of an imperial presidency. We are on the cusp of losing our democracy for the sake of keeping our empire. Once a nation is started down that path, the dynamics that apply to all empires come into play – isolation, overstretch, the uniting of forces opposed to imperialism, and bankruptcy. Nemesis stalks our life as a free nation.”[9]
  • Dismantling the Empire: America’s Last Best Hope

Johnson outlines how the United States can reverse American hegemony.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chalmers_Johnson

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Who is Gary Johnson?–Ron Paul’s Vice President Running Mate–Videos

Posted on September 24, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, Health Care, history, Immigration, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Resources, Security, Strategy, Technology, Unemployment, Union, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , |

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Ron Paul– The Video Romney, Perry and Obama Do Not Want You To See–Peace & Prosperity Putting Faith, Family, Friends, Freedom First–Videos

Posted on September 24, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, College, Communications, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Inflation, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Private Sector, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Taxes, Technology, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , |

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Alex Jones Launches Nightly News–Videos

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20110922_Thu_NightlyNews ALEX JONES Part 1 of 6

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Ron Paul’s Full Speech at LPAC: “Don’t Steal – the Government Hates Competition!” –Videos

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Ron Paul’s Full Speech at LPAC: “Don’t Steal – the Government Hates Competition!”

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EAT THE RICH!

 

Obama sets the record straight: It’s not class warfare …It’s MATH

 

President Obama – It’s Not Class Warfare to Ask Millionaire to Pay Same Tax Rate as Secretary

 

Obama the Socialist wants to spread YOUR money around

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President Barack Obama, September 19, 2011

“…So I am ready, I am eager, to work with Democrats and Republicans to reform the tax code to make it simpler, make it fairer, and make America more competitive.  But any reform plan will have to raise revenue to help close our deficit.  That has to be part of the formula.  And any reform should follow another simple principle:  Middle-class families shouldn’t pay higher taxes than millionaires and billionaires.  That’s pretty straightforward.  It’s hard to argue against that.  Warren Buffett’s secretary shouldn’t pay a higher tax rate than Warren Buffett.  There is no justification for it.

It is wrong that in the United States of America, a teacher or a nurse or a construction worker who earns $50,000 should pay higher tax rates than somebody pulling in $50 million. Anybody who says we can’t change the tax code to correct that, anyone who has signed some pledge to protect every single tax loophole so long as they live, they should be called out.  They should have to defend that unfairness — explain why somebody who’s making $50 million a year in the financial markets should be paying 15 percent on their taxes, when a teacher making $50,000 a year is paying more than that — paying a higher rate.  They ought to have to answer for it.  And if they’re pledged to keep that kind of unfairness in place, they should remember, the last time I checked the only pledge that really matters is the pledge we take to uphold the Constitution. …”

2011 Tax Rates & 2011 Tax Brackets

Here are the federal income tax rates for 2011 from the IRS:

2011 Tax Rates & 2011 Tax Brackets

Here are the federal income tax rates for 2011 from the IRS:

Tax Rate Single Married Filing Joint Married Filing Separate Head of Household
10% Up to $8,500 Up to $17,000 Up to $8,500 Up to $12,150
15% $8,501 – $34,500 $17,001 – $69,000 $8,501 – $34,500 $12,151 – $46,250
25% $34,501 – $83,600 $69,001 – $139,350 $34,501 – $69,675 $46,251 – $119,400
28% $83,601 – $174,400 $139,351 – $212,300 $69,676 – $106,150 $119,401 – $193,350
33% $174,401 – $379,150 $212,301 – $379,150 $106,151 – $189,575 $193,351 – $379,150
35% Over $379,150 Over $379,150 Over $189,575 Over $379,150

In addition to the tax brackets above, you may owe tax under the alternative minimum tax. You can review the 2011 AMT exemption to see if it will apply to you.

Proposed 2012 Tax Rates & Tax Brackets

Tax Rate Single Married Filing Joint Head of Household
10% Up to $8,600 Up to $17,200 Up to $12,250
15% $8,601 – $34,900 $17,201 – $69,800 $12,251 – $46,750
25% $34,901 – $84,500 $69,801 – $140,850 $46,751 – $120,700
28% $84,501 – $195,950 $140,851 – $237,700 $120,701 – $216,800
36% $195,951 – $383,350 $237,701 – $383,350 $216,801 – $383,350
39.6% Over $383,350 Over $383,350 Over $383,350

Married Filing Separate was not included in the release. I’ll update the 2012 federal tax tables for all filing statuses as soon as the information is available.

2012 Tax Rates vs 2011 Tax Rates

Want to compare the proposed 2012 tax brackets to the current year to see the changes?

The biggest changes in the proposal are expanding the 28% bracket and replacing the 33% and 35% brackets with 36% and 39.6% brackets.

http://www.mydollarplan.com/tax-brackets/

FACT CHECK: Are rich taxed less than secretaries?

“…This year, households making more than $1 million will pay an average of 29.1
percent of their income in federal taxes, including income taxes, payroll taxes
and other taxes, according to the Tax Policy Center, a Washington think
tank.

Households making between $50,000 and $75,000 will pay an average of 15
percent of their income in federal taxes.

Lower-income households will pay less. For example, households making between
$40,000 and $50,000 will pay an average of 12.5 percent of their income in
federal taxes. Households making between $20,000 and $30,000 will pay 5.7
percent.

The latest IRS figures are a few years older — and limited to federal income
taxes — but show much the same thing. In 2009, taxpayers who made $1 million or
more paid on average 24.4 percent of their income in federal income taxes,
according to the IRS.

Those making $100,000 to $125,000 paid on average 9.9 percent in federal
income taxes. Those making $50,000 to $60,000 paid an average of 6.3
percent.

Obama’s claim hinges on the fact that, for high-income families and
individuals, investment income is often taxed at a lower rate than wages. The
top tax rate for dividends and capital gains is 15 percent. The top marginal tax
rate for wages is 35 percent, though that is reserved for taxable income above
$379,150.

With tax rates that high, why do so many people pay at lower rates? Because
the tax code is riddled with more than $1 trillion in deductions, exemptions and
credits, and they benefit people at every income level, according to data from
the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation, Congress’ official scorekeeper on
revenue issues.

The Tax Policy Center estimates that 46 percent of households, mostly low-
and medium-income households, will pay no federal income taxes this year. Most,
however, will pay other taxes, including Social Security payroll taxes. …”

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5iP3lhS4ZQ-UhyUvFfUgdPCiu-jJA?docId=47a565563a294b2bad96544a7f0ddc1b

Table 1. Summary of Federal Individual Income Tax Data, 2008(Updated October 2010)

Number of Returns with Positive AGI AGI ($ millions) Income Taxes Paid ($ millions) Group’s Share of Total AGI Group’s Share of Income Taxes Income Split Point Average Tax Rate
All Taxpayers 139,960,580 8,426,625 1,031,512 100% 100% - 12.24%
Top 1% 1,399,606 1,685,472 392,149 20.00% 38.02% $380,354 23.27%
1-5% 5,598,423 1,241,229 213,569 14.73% 20.70% 17.21%
Top 5% 6,998,029 2,926,701 605,718 34.73% 58.72% $159,619 20.70%
5-10% 6,998,029 929,761 115,703 11.03% 11.22% 12.44%
Top 10% 13,996,058 3,856,462 721,421 45.77% 69.94% $113,799 18.71%
10-25% 20,994,087 1,821,717 169,193 21.62% 16.40% 9.29%
Top 25% 34,990,145 5,678,179 890,614 67.38% 86.34% $67,280 15.68%
25-50% 34,990,145 1,673,932 113,025 19.86% 10.96% 6.75%
Top 50% 69,980,290 7,352,111 1,003,639 87.25% 97.30% >$33,048 13.65%
Bottom 50% 69,980,290 1,074,514 27,873 12.75% 2.70% <$33,048 2.59%
Source: Internal Revenue Service
Table 6
Total Income Tax Shares, 1980-2008 (Percent of federal income tax paid by each group)
Year Total Top 0.1% Top 1% Top 5% Between 5% & 10% Top 10% Between 10% & 25% Top 25% Between 25% & 50% Top 50% Bottom 50%
1980 100% 19.05% 36.84% 12.44% 49.28% 23.74% 73.02% 19.93% 92.95% 7.05%
1981 100% 17.58% 35.06% 12.90% 47.96% 24.33% 72.29% 20.26% 92.55% 7.45%
1982 100% 19.03% 36.13% 12.45% 48.59% 23.91% 72.50% 20.15% 92.65% 7.35%
1983 100% 20.32% 37.26% 12.44% 49.71% 23.39% 73.10% 19.73% 92.83% 7.17%
1984 100% 21.12% 37.98% 12.58% 50.56% 22.92% 73.49% 19.16% 92.65% 7.35%
1985 100% 21.81% 38.78% 12.67% 51.46% 22.60% 74.06% 18.77% 92.83% 7.17%
1986 100% 25.75% 42.57% 12.12% 54.69% 21.33% 76.02% 17.52% 93.54% 6.46%
Tax Reform Act of 1986 changed the definition of AGI, so data above and below this line not strictly comparable
1987 100% 24.81% 43.26% 12.35% 55.61% 21.31% 76.92% 17.02% 93.93% 6.07%
1988 100% 27.58% 45.62% 11.66% 57.28% 20.57% 77.84% 16.44% 94.28% 5.72%
1989 100% 25.24% 43.94% 11.85% 55.78% 21.44% 77.22% 16.94% 94.17% 5.83%
1990 100% 25.13% 43.64% 11.73% 55.36% 21.66% 77.02% 17.16% 94.19% 5.81%
1991 100% 24.82% 43.38% 12.45% 55.82% 21.46% 77.29% 17.23% 94.52% 5.48%
1992 100% 27.54% 45.88% 12.12% 58.01% 20.47% 78.48% 16.46% 94.94% 5.06%
1993 100% 29.01% 47.36% 11.88% 59.24% 20.03% 79.27% 15.92% 95.19% 4.81%
1994 100% 28.86% 47.52% 11.93% 59.45% 20.10% 79.55% 15.68% 95.23% 4.77%
1995 100% 30.26% 48.91% 11.84% 60.75% 19.62% 80.36% 15.03% 95.39% 4.61%
1996 100% 32.31% 50.97% 11.54% 62.51% 18.80% 81.32% 14.36% 95.68% 4.32%
1997 100% 33.17% 51.87% 11.33% 63.20% 18.47% 81.67% 14.05% 95.72% 4.28%
1998 100% 34.75% 53.84% 11.20% 65.04% 17.65% 82.69% 13.10% 95.79% 4.21%
1999 100% 36.18% 55.45% 11.00% 66.45% 17.09% 83.54% 12.46% 96.00% 4.00%
2000 100% 37.42% 56.47% 10.86% 67.33% 16.68% 84.01% 12.08% 96.09% 3.91%
2001 100% 16.06% 33.89% 53.25% 11.64% 64.89% 18.01% 82.90% 13.13% 96.03% 3.97%
2002 100% 15.43% 33.71% 53.80% 11.94% 65.73% 18.16% 83.90% 12.60% 96.50% 3.50%
2003 100% 15.68% 34.27% 54.36% 11.48% 65.84% 18.04% 83.88% 12.65% 96.54% 3.46%
2004 100% 17.44% 36.89% 57.13% 11.07% 68.19% 16.67% 84.86% 11.85% 96.70% 3.30%
2005 100% 19.26% 39.38% 59.67% 10.63% 70.30% 15.69% 85.99% 10.94% 96.93% 3.07%
2006 100% 19.56% 39.89% 60.14% 10.65% 70.79% 15.47% 86.27% 10.75% 97.01% 2.99%
2007 100% 20.19% 40.41% 60.61% 10.59% 71.20% 15.37% 86.57% 10.54% 97.11% 2.89%
2008 100% 18.47% 38.02% 58.72% 11.22% 69.94% 16.40% 86.34% 10.96% 97.30% 2.70%
Source: IRS
Table 8
Average Tax Rate, 1980-2008 (Percent of AGI paid in income taxes)
Year Total Top 0.1% Top 1% Top 5% Between 5% & 10% Top 10% Between 10% & 25% Top 25% Between 25% & 50% Top 50% Bottom 50%
1980 15.31% 34.47% 26.85% 17.13% 23.49% 14.80% 19.72% 11.91% 17.29% 6.10%
1981 15.76% 33.37% 26.59% 18.16% 23.64% 15.53% 20.11% 12.48% 17.73% 6.62%
1982 14.72% 31.43% 25.05% 16.61% 22.17% 14.35% 18.79% 11.63% 16.57% 6.10%
1983 13.79% 30.18% 23.64% 15.54% 20.91% 13.20% 17.62% 10.76% 15.52% 5.66%
1984 13.68% 29.92% 23.42% 15.57% 20.81% 12.90% 17.47% 10.48% 15.35% 5.77%
1985 13.73% 29.86% 23.50% 15.69% 20.93% 12.83% 17.55% 10.41% 15.41% 5.70%
1986 14.54% 33.13% 25.68% 15.99% 22.64% 12.97% 18.72% 10.48% 16.32% 5.63%
Tax Reform Act of 1986 changed the definition of AGI, so data above and below this line not strictly comparable
1987 13.12% 26.41% 22.10% 14.43% 19.77% 11.71% 16.61% 9.45% 14.60% 5.09%
1988 13.21% 24.04% 21.14% 14.07% 19.18% 11.82% 16.47% 9.60% 14.64% 5.06%
1989 13.12% 23.34% 20.71% 13.93% 18.77% 12.08% 16.27% 9.77% 14.53% 5.11%
1990 12.95% 23.25% 20.46% 13.63% 18.50% 12.01% 16.06% 9.73% 14.36% 5.01%
1991 12.75% 24.37% 20.62% 13.96% 18.63% 11.57% 15.93% 9.55% 14.20% 4.62%
1992 12.94% 25.05% 21.19% 13.99% 19.13% 11.39% 16.25% 9.42% 14.44% 4.39%
1993 13.32% 28.01% 22.71% 14.01% 20.20% 11.40% 16.90% 9.37% 14.90% 4.29%
1994 13.50% 28.23% 23.04% 14.20% 20.48% 11.57% 17.15% 9.42% 15.11% 4.32%
1995 13.86% 28.73% 23.53% 14.46% 20.97% 11.71% 17.58% 9.43% 15.47% 4.39%
1996 14.34% 28.87% 24.07% 14.74% 21.55% 11.86% 18.12% 9.53% 15.96% 4.40%
1997 14.48% 27.64% 23.62% 14.87% 21.36% 12.04% 18.18% 9.63% 16.09% 4.48%
1998 14.42% 27.12% 23.63% 14.79% 21.42% 11.63% 18.16% 9.12% 16.00% 4.44%
1999 14.85% 27.53% 24.18% 15.06% 21.98% 11.76% 18.66% 9.12% 16.43% 4.48%
2000 15.26% 27.45% 24.42% 15.48% 22.34% 12.04% 19.09% 9.28% 16.86% 4.60%
2001 14.23% 28.20% 27.50% 23.68% 14.89% 21.41% 11.58% 18.08% 8.91% 15.85% 4.09%
2002 13.03% 28.49% 27.25% 22.95% 13.87% 20.51% 10.47% 16.99% 7.67% 14.66% 3.21%
2003 11.90% 24.64% 24.31% 20.74% 12.22% 18.49% 9.54% 15.38% 7.12% 13.35% 2.95%
2004 12.10% 23.09% 23.49% 20.67% 12.28% 18.60% 9.26% 15.53% 7.01% 13.51% 2.97%
2005 12.45% 22.52% 23.13% 20.78% 12.37% 18.84% 9.27% 15.86% 6.93% 13.84% 2.98%
2006 12.60% 21.98% 22.79% 20.68% 12.60% 18.86% 9.36% 15.95% 7.01% 13.98% 3.01%
2007 12.68% 21.46% 22.45% 20.53% 12.66% 18.79% 9.43% 15.98% 7.01% 14.03% 2.99%
2008 12.24% 22.70% 23.27% 20.70% 12.44% 18.71% 9.29% 15.68% 6.75% 13.65% 2.59%
Source: IRS

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_the_United_States

Summary of Outlays, Revenues (Receipts), Deficits, Surpluses Fiscal Years 1980-2010(Nominal Dollars in Millions)
Fiscal Year Outlays Revenues (Receipts) Deficits (-), Surpluses
1980 590,941 517,112 -73,830
1981 678,241 599,272 -78,968
1982 745,743 617,766 -127,977
1983 808,364 600,562 -207,802
1984 851,805 666,488 -185,367
1985 946,344 734,037 -212,308
1986 990,382 769,155 -221,277
1987 1,004,017 854,288 -149,730
1988 1,064,417 854,288 -155,178
1989 1,143,744 991,105 -152,639
1990 1,252,994 1,031,958 -221,036
1991 1,324,226 1,054,988 -269,238
1992 1,381,529 1,091,208 -290,321
1993 1,409,386 1,154,335 -255,051
1994 1,461,753 1,258,566 -203,186
1995 1,515,742 1,351,790 -163,392
1996 1,560,484 1,453,053 -107,431
1997 1,601,116 1,579,232 -21,884
1998 1,652,458 1,721,728 69,270
1999 1,701,842 1,827,452 125,610
2000 1,788,950 2,025,191 236,241
2001 1,862,846 1,991,082 128,236
2002 2,010,894 1,853,136 -157,758
2003 2,159,899 1,782,314 -377,585
2004 2,292,841 1,880,114 -412,727
2005 2,471,957 2,153,611 -318,346
2006 2,655,050 2,406,869 -248,181
2007 2,728,686 2,567,985 -160,701
2008 2,982,544 2,523,991 -458,553
2009 3,517,677 2,104,989 -1,412,688
2010 3,456,213 2,162,724 -1,293,489
2011 Est. 3,818,819 2,173,700 -1,645,119
2012 Est. 3,728,686 2,627,449 -1,101,237
2013 Est. 3,770,876 3,003,345 -767,531

http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/budget/fy2012/assets/hist01z1.xls

http://www.taxfoundation.org/news/show/250.html#Data

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Ron Paul On U.S. Foreign Policy–Mutually Assured Destruction vs Mutually Assured Respect –Videos

Posted on September 19, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Economics, Education, Fiscal Policy, government, government spending, history, Inflation, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, Philosophy, Politics, Rants, Raves, Security, Taxes, Technology, Unemployment, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , |

“It is our true policy to steer clear of entangling alliance with any portion of the foreign world.”

~George Washington

Mutually Assured Destruction vs Mutually Assured Respect

Ron Paul: The Soviet Union detonated its first nuclear bomb on August 29, 1949, leading to the doctrine of Mutually Assured Destruction, shared by both the USA and the Soviets.  The unwritten agreement by the two super powers deterred nuclear war with an implied threat to blow up the world, if need be, to defend each of their interests.

I well remember the Cuban missile crises of October 1962, having been drafted into the military at that time.  Mutually Assured Destruction had significant meaning to the whole world during this period.  This crisis, along with the escalating ill-advised Vietnam War, made me very much aware of the problems the world faced during the five years I served as a USAF flight surgeon.

It was with great pleasure and hope that I observed the collapse of the Soviet Empire between 1989 and 1991.  This breakup verified the early predictions by the free market economists, like Ludwig Von Mises, that communism would self-destruct because of the deeply flawed economic theories embedded in socialism.  Our nukes were never needed because ideas are more powerful than the Weapons of War.

Many Americans at the time were boldly hopeful that we would benefit from a generous peace dividend.  Sadly, it turned out to be a wonderful opportunity wasted.  There was to be no “beating their swords into plowshares,” even though history shows that without weapons and war there’s more food and prosperity for the people.  Unfortunately, our leaders decided on another course that served the special interests who benefit from constant wars and the arbitrary rearrangement of national borders for control of national resources.

Instead of a peace dividend from ending the policy of Mutually Assured Destruction, US leaders opted for a foreign policy of American world domination as its sole super power.  It was all in the spirit of Woodrow Wilson’s idealistic goal of “making the world safe for democracy” by pursuing a war to end all wars.

The mantra became that American exceptionalism morally required us to spread our dominance world-wide by force.  US world dominance, by whatever means, became our new bipartisan foreign policy.  There was to be no peace dividend, though our enemies were virtually non-existent.

In many ways America had been “exceptional” but in an opposite manner from the neo-con driven foreign policy of the last 20 years.  If America indeed has something good to offer the cause of peace, prosperity, and liberty it must be spread through persuasion and by example; not by intimidation, bribes and war.

Maintaining world domination is based on an intellectually and financially bankrupt idea that generates dependency, war, loss of civil liberties, inflation and debt, all of which contribute to our economic crisis.

Saddest of all, this policy of American domination and exceptionalism has allowed us to become an aggressor nation, supporting pre-emptive war, covert destabilization, foreign occupations, nation building, torture and assassinations.  This policy has generated hatred toward Americans and provides the incentive for almost all of the suicide attacks against us and our allies.

To continue to believe the fiction that the militants hate us for our freedoms and wealth may even result in more attacks against us — that is, unless our national bankruptcy brings us to our knees and forces us to bring our troops home.

Expanding our foreign military intervention overseas as a cure for the attacks against us, tragically, only guarantees even more attacks.  We must someday wake up, be honest with ourselves, and reject the notion that we’re spreading freedom and America’s goodness around the world.  We cannot justify our policy by claiming our mission is to secure American freedoms and protect our Constitution.  That is not believable.  This policy is doomed to fail on all fronts.

The policy of Mutually Assured Destruction has been gone now for 20 years, and that is good.

The policy of American domination of the world, as nation builder-in-chief and policeman of the world, has failed and must be abandoned—if not as a moral imperative, then certainly out of economic necessity.

My humble suggestion is to replace it with a policy of Mutually Assured Respect.  This requires no money and no weapons industry, or other special interests demanding huge war profits or other advantages.

This requires simply tolerance of others cultures and their social and religious values, and the giving up of all use of force to occupy or control other countries and their national resources.   Many who disagree choose to grossly distort the basic principles shared by the world’s great religions:  the Golden Rule, the Ten Commandments, and the cause of peace.  Religions all too often are distorted and used to justify the violence engaged in for arbitrary power.

A policy of Mutually Assured Respect would result in the U.S.:

  • Treating other nations exactly as we expect others to treat us.
  • Offering friendship with all who seek it.
  • Participating in trade with all who are willing.
  • Refusing to threaten, bribe or occupy any other nation.

Seeking  an honest system of commodity money that no single country can manipulate for a trade advantage.  Without this, currency manipulation becomes a tool of protectionism and prompts retaliation with tariffs and various regulations.  This policy, when it persists, is dangerous and frequently leads to real wars.

Mutually Assured Respect offers a policy of respect, trade and friendship and rejects threats, sanctions and occupations.

This is the only practical way to promote peace, harmony and economic well-being to the maximum number of people in the world.

Mutually Assured Respect may not be perfect but far better than Mutually Assured Destruction or unilateral American dominance.

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Shultz on Nukes — Then & Now

“…George Shultz, writing with Henry Kissinger and others in the Wall Street Journal late last year, asserted that nuclear weapons were essential to maintaining international security during the Cold War. But reliance on nuclear weapons for [the purpose of deterrence] is becoming increasingly hazardous and decreasingly effective,The world is now on the precipice of a new and dangerous nuclear era. What made nuclear weapons acceptable then, and so unacceptable today? In answering these questions Shultz addresses the difficult challenges the United States faces as it seeks to curb the nuclear ambitions of North Korea and Iran, and the threat represented by non-nation state actors: the nightmare scenario of a nuclear suitcase bomb detonating in a major American city. …”


The Original American Foreign Policy

By Ron Paul

http://www.lewrockwell.com/paul/paul375.html

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Obama’s Solargate: Solyndra Stimulus Spending Cost Taxpayers An Estimated $535 Million–Crony Capitalism Campaign Contribution Corruption–Videos

Posted on September 18, 2011. Filed under: Business, Communications, Demographics, Economics, Employment, Energy, Fiscal Policy, Macroeconomics, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Natural Gas, Nuclear Power, Oil | Tags: , , , , , , |

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 Obama’s Solargate: Solyndra Stimulus Spending Cost Taxpayers An Estimated $535 Million–Crony Capitalism Campaign Contribution Corruption–Videos

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President Barack Obama’s national industrial policy of betting the American people’s tax dollars on risky investments such as green energy solar panels was hit with a huge financial loss with the bankruptcy of Solyndra Inc. The story is quickly turning into a political scandal involving campaign contributions for an expedited approval of a loan guarantee and delaying the disclosure of Solyndra’s failure to Congress—Obama’s Solargate.

In March 2009, Solyndra became the green energy poster child of successful stimulus spending, securing the first Department of Energy $535 million loan guarantee under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

Vice President Joe Biden spoke at the groundbreaking for the construction of the plant via satellite and said, “This announcement today is part of the unprecedented investment this administration is making in renewable energy and exactly what the Recovery Act is all about.”

Obama made a visit to Solyndra in May 2010 and declared “the engine of economic growth will always be companies like Solyndra.”

Solyndra started manufacturing cylindrical panels of thin-film solar cells in Fremont, Calif. in 2007. Solyndra originally applied for the loan guarantee under the Bush Administration in 2006. The loan guarantee application was unanimously turned down on Jan. 12, 2009, by the Department of Energy’s credit committee. The application was sent back for additional information and analysis.

The $535 million loan guarantee was in support of a loan for the construction of a commercial-scale manufacturing plant, called Fab2, for Solyndra’s proprietary solar photovoltaic panels. Solyndra estimated in March 2009 the plant construction would employ about 3,000 employees and plant operation would employ about 1,000 in the U.S.

The U.S. solar panel industry faces stiff competition from imports from Chinese companies that are heavily subsidized by state-owned banks that provide financing with very low interest loans. The price of Solyndra’s solar panels could not compete with the much cheaper Chinese imports.

Last month, 30 months after being approved for the loan guarantee Solyndra laid-off nearly all of its 1,100 employees offering no severance package and ceasing all operations.

On Sept. 6, Solyndra filed for protection from creditors under Chapter 11 bankruptcy and is seeking a buyer for the company. The company owes a total of $783.8 million of which $527.8 million is owed to the federal government, according to documents filed at the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware. If the company cannot find a buyer, the assets will be sold off to pay its creditors.

The Department of Energy’s Office of the Inspector General is investigating Solyndra.On Sept. 8, DOE had the Federal Bureau of Investigation execute multiple search warrants and raid Solyndra’s headquarters in Fremont.

Since February, the Energy and Commerce Committee has been investigating the Solyndra $535 loan guarantee. On Sept. 14, the committee held hearings on Solyndra and the role of the Obama administration in expediting the approval of the loan-guarantee. Apparently, the DOE also knew in July 2011 that Solyndra could not continue to operate, but it did not inform Congress, which was seeking documents and information on Solyndra.

Solyndra’s chief executive officer Brian Harrison and chief financial officer W.G. Stover were scheduled to testify before the House Energy and Commerce Committee. However, they sent letters to the committee that they would not be testify because of the ongoing FBI criminal investigation. Looks like the executives will be pleading their Fifth Amendment rights by refusing to testify under oath to the congressional committee on the grounds that their testimony could be used as evidence to convict them of a criminal offense.

The Obama Administration picked green energy investments as a “winner” industry and technology. Obama staffers said investments in green energy projects would promote energy independence, reduce carbon emissions and create jobs.

A major investor in Solyndra was the George Kaiser Family Foundation. Billionaire investor George B. Kaiser is the 89th richest person on the planet, with a net worth of $9.8 billion in 2011, according to Forbes magazine. Kaiser also just happens to have been a top bundler of campaign contributions to the Obama 2008 Presidential campaign. A bundler collects contributions of many small contributors and bundles them before sending them to candidate’s campaign. Kaiser, himself, backed Obama by contributing $53,500 to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and Obama for America.

Kaiser and Solyndra executives made many visits to the White House during the stimulus loan guarantee approval process. The White House monitored and indicated its interest in Solyndra, prior to the Office of Management and Budget review and Department of Energy’s approval of the $535 million loan guarantee.

Simply, it is not the role of the federal government to determine which companies, industries and technologies should be subsidized or given loan guarantees paid for with taxes from Americans.

A national industrial policy that picks winners and losers by subsidizing certain companies, industries and technologies attracts a multitude of economic rent seekers. These rent seekers want a subsidy or loan guarantee for their company or industry. If the politician will give them this subsidy or loan guarantee, the rent seeker will provide the candidate with campaign contributions so that they can be elected or re-elected to public office.

While some businessmen, economists and politicians may label this a stimulus package, others call it bribery or theft by government. It is really nothing more than crony capitalism that corrupts both the political process and the markets.

Under crony capitalism, success in business is determined by how close or well-connected business owners are to public officials. Crony capitalism is usually found where there is rampant government interventionism into the economy in the form of regulations and taxes.

Under free market capitalism, success in business is determined largely by the price and quality of the goods and services a business sells in the market place. Free market capitalism is found where there is little government intervention into the economy, regulations are few and taxes are low. Today crony capitalism is spreading like a cancer around the world, while free market capitalism is a rarity.

Bundlers of campaign contributions are bribing politicians. Bundlers fully expect access and a political payoff once the politician they supported is elected to public office. Obama made sure that his bundlers were generously paid.

Political payoffs can take many forms. In the case of Kaiser, a top bundler of campaign contributions to Obama’s 2008 Presidential campaign and whose foundation was a major Solyndra investor, it was a $535 million loan guarantee.

The American people want the loan guarantees, loans, subsidies and bailouts to businesses and unions stopped. They want the massive stimulus spending and deficits that fail to create jobs stopped as well as the corruption of crony capitalism stopped.

Ronald Reagan in his inaugural address Jan. 20, 1981, said it best,: “In the present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.”

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Documents show Solyndra sought second government loan guarantee for $469 million

“…Failed solar panel maker Solyndra’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings show that seven months after the Obama administration’s Department of Energy approved a $535 million federal loan guarantee, Solyndra applied for a second one valued at $469 million.

“On September 11, 2009, we applied for a second loan guarantee from the DOE, in the amount of approximately $469 million, to partially fund Phase II,” Solyndra wrote in a report it filed with the SEC on December 18, 2009. “If we are unable to obtain the DOE guaranteed loan in whole or in part, we intend to fund any financing shortfall with some combination of the proceeds of this offering, cash flows from operations, debt financing and additional equity financing.”

“…“Although the DOE determined on November 4, 2009, that our initial application was complete, and we submitted the second part of the application on November 17, 2009, there is no guarantee that the DOE will approve our application in the full amount requested or at all,” the company wrote in its December 18, 2009 SEC filing.

Dan Simmons of the Institute for Energy Research told TheDC that Solyndra’s failure looks even worse in light of its aim for even more taxpayer money in 2009.

“Solyndra saw the American taxpayer as their personal piggy-bank, so it’s no surprise that they wanted another half billion dollar loan from the taxpayer,” Simmons said in an email. “The only surprise is that the Obama administration rejected the second loan. After all, both private and Department of Energy financial analysts were not excited by Solyndra’s prospects before the first loan.” …”

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/09/16/documents-show-solyndra-sought-second-government-loan-guarantee-for-469-million/#ixzz1Yc8684d1

Solyndra

“…Solyndra was a manufacturer of cylindrical panels of CIGS thin-film solar cells based in Fremont, California. The company suspended all of its operations as of August 2011 leaving behind the United States government as its largest creditor.[1]

In May 2010, the company was personally promoted by President Obama in his visit as a model for government investment in green technology,[2] and was also visited by former California governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger.[3] A $535 million loan guarantee was applied for under the Bush administration but the loan was denied.[4] The $535 million loan guarantee was later granted by the Obama administration. Private investors also invested more than $1 billion into the company.[2]

Due to overseas price pressure coming from China in the period of constructing the new plant, the Fab 2, the company had shut-down its original plant, Fab 1, and simultaneously reduced its staff to approximately 1,100 employees.[5] In early September 2011, the company ceased all business activity, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and laid-off all employees.[3] The company is also being sued by employees who were abruptly laid-off.[2]

On September 8th, 2011, Federal Bureau of Investigation Agents executed multiple search warrants at the company’s headquarters in Fremont as part of an investigation by the Department of Energy’s Office of the Inspector General.[2]

Technology

Solyndra designed, manufactured and sold solar photovoltaic (PV) systems composed of panels and mounting hardware for large, low-slope commercial rooftops. The panels perform optimally when mounted horizontally and packed closely together, thereby, the company claimed, covering significantly more of the typically available roof area and producing more electricity per rooftop on an annual basis than a conventional panel installation.[6]

The solar panels developed by the company were claimed to be unlike any other product ever tried in the industry. The panels were made of racks of cylindrical tubes (also called tubular solar panels), as opposed to traditional flat panels. Solyndra rolled its copper-indium-gallium-diselenide (CIGS) thin films into a cylindrical shape and places 40 of them in each 1-meter-by-2-meter panel. The cylindrical solar panels (think of fluorescent tube lights—except in reverse) can absorb energy from every direction (direct, indirect and reflected light).[citation needed]

Each Solyndra cylinder, one inch in diameter, is made up of two tubes. The company used equipment it had developed to deposit CIGS on the outside of the inner tube, which includes up to 200 CIGS cells. On top of the CIGS material, it adds an “optical coupling agent”, which concentrates the sunlight that shines through the outer tube. After inserting the inner tube into the outer tube, each cylinder is sealed with glass and metal to keep out moisture, which erodes CIGS’s performance. The hermetic sealing technology is commonly used in fluorescent bulbs.[7]

When combined with a white roof (the fastest growing segment of the commercial roof industry with over 1 billion square feet installed in 2008 and required for any new commercial construction in California), the company claimed that systems that employ the panels on a given rooftop could produce significantly more electricity in a given year. With a white roof, the panels can capture up to 20% more light than with a black roof.[citation needed]

The other advantage claimed by the company was that the panels did not have to move to track the Sun. The panels are always presenting some of their face directly perpendicular to the Sun.[8] The daily production of flat solar panels has an output curve that has a clear peak while Solyndra claimed their system produced more power throughout the day.

The Solyndra panels allow wind to blow through them. According to the company, these factors enable the installation of PV on a broader range of rooftops without anchoring or ballast, which are inherently problematic.[6] Solyndra claimed that wind and snow loads are negligible and that its panels are lighter in weight per area.[citation needed]

The company claimed the cells themselves convert 12 to 14 percent of sunlight into electricity, an efficiency better than competing CIGS thin-film technologies.[7] However, these efficiencies are for the cells laid flat.[9] The company did not post any numbers when the cells are rolled up. The Solyndra 100/200 spec sheet doesn’t mention the cells nor the panel efficiencies directly. However, calculating from the data provided shows the high-end 210 panel has a field efficiency of about 8.5%.[10]

In 2006, Solyndra began deploying demonstration systems around the world. The company stated the total count was 14 systems and that these systems were each instrumented with highly sensitive radiation, wind speed, temperate and humidity measurement devices to aid in the development of energy yield forecasting software tools, claiming there were more than 1000 Solyndra systems installed around the world and that they shipped its 100th megawatt of panels in March 2011.[citation needed]

Management

Solyndra was led by Brian Harrison, a veteran of Intel Corporation, from July 27, 2010, when Solyndra announced that Brian Harrison had replaced founder Chris Gronet as CEO of the company.

Major investors included George Kaiser Family Foundation, U.S. Venture Partners, CMEA Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, Virgin Green Fund, Madrone Capital Partners, RockPort Capital Partners, Argonaut Private Equity, Masdar and Artis Capital Management.

In 2009, the company posted $100 million dollars in revenue. It was estimated that its production and sales growth could lead to a market cap between $1.76 – 2 billion dollars.[11] 2010 revenues were approximately $140 million.

Other executives include Bill Stover, CFO, Karen Alter, SVP of Marketing, Corby Whitaker, VP, Sales United States, John Gaffney, Corporate Counsel and Ben Bierman, EVP Operations and Engineering.[citation needed]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solyndra

Sondra faces House subcommittee hearings

Executives of the bankrupt solar energy equipment maker are likely to field questions about whether its $535-million stimulus loan was granted because of Solyndra’s financial ties to a major Democratic fundraiser.

“… Solar energy equipment maker Solyndra Inc., reeling from a recent bankruptcy filing and FBI raids last week on its Bay Area office and executives’ homes, faces a public and probably embarrassing reckoning before a House subcommittee.

The hearings Wednesday are the latest step by the House Energy and Commerce Committee and its oversight arm to push an investigation it launched in February into the Energy Department’s decision to give Solyndra a $535-million loan guarantee under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. …”

http://articles.latimes.com/2011/sep/13/business/la-fi-solyndra-hearing-20110913

Big Name Investors Behind Obama’s Failed Green Tech Bet First in Line to Recoup Losses

By Michael Grunwald | September 3, 2011

“…Republicans are already dancing on the grave of Solyndra,
the solar panel manufacturer that received a $535 million federal loan
in 2009 and collapsed on Wednesday. Here’s more music they can dance to:
Sources tell me the Obama administration restructured the loan this
winter, so taxpayers probably won’t even be the first creditors to get
paid after Solyndra files for bankruptcy next week. The first $75
million will go to two Solyndra investors who poured in extra cash when
the company nearly went bust in January. And one of them is a venture
associated with the billionaire George Kaiser, an Obama campaign
bundler.

The other investor is a partnership associated with the Walton
family, which tends to lean Republican. And public filings suggest that
Kaiser-linked funds had sunk at least $320 million into Solyndra before
adding the secured financing; they’re taking a bath along with the rest
of us. “If this was a sweetheart deal, it was the worst sweetheart deal
ever,” one official quipped.

So why did the administration agree to the restructuring? The short
answer, in poker terms, is that it felt pot-committed. It had already
made a big bet; it didn’t want to fold if there was still a chance of
winning. The slightly longer answer is that administration officials
thought (as I did) that Solyndra was back on track, and that giving the
company a new lease on life would benefit taxpayers even if it
ultimately failed. A fuller explanation culled from government documents
follows. …”

Obama’s Pet Billionaire at Solyndra May Take White House Down

“…Solyndra LLC’s workers making solar-power panels in a California factory
subsidized by U.S. taxpayers showed “the promise of clean energy isn’t
just an article of faith,” President Barack Obama said on a visit to the
company in May 2010.

Two months before Obama’s visit, accounting
firm PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP warned that Solyndra, the recipient of
$535 million in federal loan guarantees, had financial troubles deep
enough to “raise substantial doubt about its ability to continue as a
going concern.”

The Obama administration stood by Solyndra
through the auditor’s warning, the abandonment of a planned initial
public offering and a last-ditch refinancing where taxpayers took a back
seat to new investors. That unwavering commitment has come under
increasing scrutiny since the company’s travails culminated in its
filing for bankruptcy protection on Sept. 6 and a raid on its
headquarters by the Federal Bureau of Investigation two days later. …”

http://nation.foxnews.com/solyndra/2011/09/12/obamas-pet-billionaire-solyndra-may-take-white-house-down

The Phony Solyndra Solar Scandal

by davejFollow

“…The economy tanked and cut demand, and at the same time Solyndra
could not compete with subsidized companies located in China as they
rapidly scaled up. So Solyndra ran out of money. Conservatives and oil
interests are using the bankruptcy as a platform to attack green energy
and the idea of green jobs in general, solar power in particular,
President Obama as always, stimulus funding and the idea of developing a
national strategic industrial policy to push back on China and others
who have their own national policies to win this key industry of the
future.

Conservative Attacks

Conservative are accusing the Obama administration of corruption in
choosing Solyndra to receive a government loan guarantee. The typical
conservative-outlet story follows a template of Glenn-Beckian
accusations that someone “connected to” Obama has “ties” to something.
When you hear the phrasing “has ties to” you should understand this as
code-speak for “has nothing to do with but can be made to appear to have
some sinister involvement if you twist the wording a certain way.” …”

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2011/09/14/1016840/-The-Phony-Solyndra-Solar-Scandal

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Posted on September 16, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, College, Communications, Demographics, Diasters, Economics, Education, Energy, Enivornment, Farming, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, government, government spending, Health Care, history, Immigration, Inflation, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Macroeconomics, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, Natural Gas, Nuclear Power, Oil, People, Philosophy, Politics, Private Sector, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Science, Security, Talk Radio, Transportation, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , |

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RON PAUL IS EXPLODING!

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Obama Proposes Tax Increases To Pay For Jobs/Stimulus Spending–Videos

Posted on September 13, 2011. Filed under: Banking, Blogroll, Business, Communications, Economics, Fiscal Policy, Macroeconomics, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, Private Sector, Public Sector, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

Pronk Pops Show 45:September 14, 2011

Pronk Pops Show 44:September 7, 2011

Pronk Pops Show 43:August 31, 2011

Pronk Pops Show 42:August 24, 2011

Pronk Pops Show 41:August 17, 2011

Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Shows 45-

Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Shows 41-44

Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Shows 38-40

Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Shows 34-37

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Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Shows 22 (Part 2)-26

Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Shows 16-22 (Part 1)

Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Shows 10-15

Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Shows 1-9

President Barack Obama addresses Joint Session of Congress in House Chamber

Credit: Official White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson

“Government spending cannot create additional jobs. If the government provides the funds required by taxing the citizens or by borrowing from the public, it abolishes on the one hand as many jobs as it creates on the other.”

~Ludwig von Mises

In his speech to Congress on Sept. 8, President Barack Obama proposed a $447 billion job’s package consisting of tax decreases  and new federal government stimulus spending.

The largest piece of Obama’s proposal is a $240 billion temporary, targeted and timely tax decrease in Social Security taxes for employees and employers of 3.1 percent each for 2012. Employees and employers would pay half of what they normally pay of 6.2 percent each or a total of 12.4 percent up to an income limit which will be $106,800 in 2012.

While this would certainly provide additional income for both workers and businesses to spend, save or invest, it would not directly help the unemployed who are more likely to quickly spend any additional income they receive. While the employed would have additional income, it is not clear whether most individuals would either consume or save this additional income.

In addition, both Social Security and Medicare are running deficits and this temporary tax decrease would make the Social Security deficit even worse for 2012. However, Obama’s plan does require that the loss in Social Security payroll tax revenues must be paid for by additional taxes.

Stanford University economist John B. Taylor argues against “temporary, targeted, and timely” fiscal stimulus packages in a Wall Street Journal editorial entitled “Why permanent tax cuts are the best stimulus, short-term fiscal policies fail to promote long-term growth.”  Taylor wrote “According to the permanent-income theory of Milton Friedman, or the life-cycle theory of  Franco Modigliani, temporary increases in income will not lead to significant increases in consumption. However, if increases are longer-term, as in the case of permanent tax cut, then consumption is increased, and by a significant amount.” Two examples of a “temporary, targeted and timely” fiscal stimulus plans are Obama’s first stimulus package of $787 billion and his second proposed jobs/stimulus/tax package of $447 billion.

Instead, Taylor argues for permanent, pervasive and predictable tax changes to stimulate the economy and create more jobs. The
FairTax is an example of a permanent, pervasive and predictable fiscal stimulus that would dramatically increase the real growth rate of the U.S. gross domestic product and reduce the unemployment rate.

According to the Americans for Fair Taxation website, “The FairTax plan is a comprehensive proposal that replaces all federal income and payroll based taxes with an integrated approach including a progressive national retail sales tax, a prebate to ensure no American pays federal taxes on spending up to the poverty level, dollar-for-dollar federal revenue neutrality, and, through companion legislation, the repeal of the 16th Amendment. It abolishes all federal personal and corporate income taxes, gift,
estate, capital gains, alternative minimum, Social Security, Medicare, and self-employment taxes and replaces them with one simple, visible, federal retail sales tax  administered primarily by existing state sales tax authorities.”

Obama said “pass this bill” several times in his speech. The only problem is there was no proposed bill to pass. Once the proposed legislation makes it to Congress, it would need to be scored by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to determine the estimated
spending outlays and tax revenue collections by fiscal year over a 10-year time period.

Obama also stated in his speech that the massive jobs/stimulus package would be fully paid for. On Sept. 12, the Obama administration released some crucial details of how the package would be funded, namely by a huge tax increase of $467 billion.

The new tax increases would take effect in 2013 and would collect an estimated $467 billion in additional tax revenues over 10 years.

Obama’s budget director, Jack Lew, summarized the tax increases over 10 years including:

  • $405 billion from limiting the itemized deductions for
    charitable contributions and other deductions that can be taken by individuals making
    over $200,000 a year and families making over $250,000;
  • $41 billion from reducing or eliminating tax credits and
    allowances for oil and gas companies;
  • $18 billion from requiring fund managers to pay higher
    taxes on certain income;
  • $3 billion from changing the depreciation of corporate jets
    from five years to seven years.

The $405 billion tax increase for individuals and families comes from limiting deductions to 28 cents per dollar deducted and exemptions on individuals who earn more than $200,000 per year and families who earn more than $250,000.

The additional federal spending and higher tax bills are not likely to pass in the near future. Therefore, it is likely that not enough jobs would be created between now and the next election in 2012 to reduce the unemployment rate significantly. To just keep up with population growth and new entrants into the labor force, the U.S. economy needs to create a minimum of 100,000 jobs per month. To reduce the unemployment by .1 percent per month an additional 150,000 jobs per month needs to be created.

If Obama’s proposed bill were passed in the near future, preliminary estimates are it would create more than 50,000 jobs per month. The U.S. economy is currently creating significantly less than 50,000 jobs per month. As a result, even if the bill were passed, the official unemployment rate would remain at or above 9 percent for 43 months of the Obama administration. This is not the hope and change the American people were expecting from Obama in 2008.

Republicans are not expected to seriously consider Obama’s proposals until they receive Obama’s proposed legislation and the CBO scores it. Republicans are likely to oppose any new tax increases and additional stimulus spending increases. The U.S economy is on the brink of another recession with real GDP growth rates for the first half of 2011 of only .7 percent. Also, the federal budget is in deficit, where spending outlays exceed tax revenues by an estimated $1.64 trillion in fiscal year 2011
and about $1 trillion in fiscal year 2012. This is on top of deficits of $1.41 trillion for fiscal year 2009 and $1.29 billion in fiscal year 2010.

Obama proposed his stimulus spending package, now named the American Jobs Act, to distract the American people from his previous failed economic policies of temporary and targeted tax decreases and massive government spending that has resulted in the official unemployment rate being above 8 percent for his entire administration. Obama knows that the Republican controlled House of Representatives will never pass his proposed legislation which includes a huge tax increase combined with even more government spending when the economy is on the brink of another recession and running massive government deficits. The American Jobs Act is dead on arrival.

Obama in his speech said he will campaign all across the country for his American Jobs Act. When the Republicans pass their own bill, Obama will then blame the Republicans for the high unemployment rate because they did not pass his American Jobs Act.

While this may be smart politics, it is bad economics. With over 25 million Americans searching for a full time job, Obama
should have proposed a permanent, pervasive and predictable fiscal program such as the FairTax to reduce the unemployment rate and increase the growth rate of the U.S. economy..

“The essence of the interventionist policy is to take from one group to give to another. It is confiscation and distribution.”

~Ludwig von Mises

Obama’s Jobs Speech To Congress- Full Video

Shorter: President Obama’s Jobs Speech

Obama’s Job Speech In 35 Seconds

Sen. Rand Paul Responds To President Obama’s Jobs Speech – 09/08/11

Reaction to Obama Jobs (aka Stimulus) Speech

Obama’s job plan would raise taxes – Press TV News

O.co aka Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne Discussing President Obama’s Job Creation Plan

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Irwin Stelzer on President Obama’s Job Plan

Hartmann: New Deal trumps Raw Deal

President Obama Presents American Jobs Act (Enhanced Version)

What is the FairTax legislation?

Is the FairTax truly progressive?

Wouldn’t it be more fair to exempt food and medicine from the FairTax?

What will the transition be like from the income tax to the FairTax?

How does the FairTax impact savings?

Will the FairTax drive the economy down if people stop buying?

Background Articles and Videos

FICA Tax

John Taylor Receives the Bradley Prize — 2010

Epstein and Taylor: Are we all Keynesians now?

John Taylor’s Reason Versus Paul Krugman’s Hyperbole (Part 1 of 2)

John Taylor’s Reason Versus Paul Krugman’s Hyperbole (Part 2 of 2)

Steine Lecture Series with John B. Taylor

The Economy According to Taylor and Judd

Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) tax

“…The Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) tax (play /ˈfaɪkə/) is a United States payroll (or employment) tax[1] imposed by the federal government on both employees and employers to fund Social Security and Medicare[2]
—federal programs that provide benefits for retirees, the disabled, and  children of deceased workers. Social Security benefits include old-age,  survivors, and disability insurance (OASDI); Medicare provides hospital  insurance benefits. The amount that one pays in payroll taxes  throughout one’s working career is indirectly tied to the social  security benefits annuity that one receives as a retiree.[citation needed] This has led some to claim that the payroll tax is not a tax because its collection is tied to a benefit.[3] The United States Supreme Court decided in Flemming v. Nestor (1960) that no one has an accrued property right to benefits from Social Security.

The Federal Insurance Contributions Act is currently codified at Title 26, Subtitle C, Chapter 21 of the United States Code.[4]

Overview

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities states that three-quarters of taxpayers pay more in payroll taxes than they do in income taxes.[5] The FICA tax is considered a regressive tax on income (with no standard deduction  or personal exemption deduction) and is imposed (for the years 2009 and  2010) only on the first $106,800 of gross wages. The tax is not imposed  on investment income (such as interest and dividends).

 “Regular” employees (most wage-earners)

For 2008, the employee’s share of the Social Security portion of the tax is 6.2%[6]  of gross compensation up to a limit of $102,000 of compensation (resulting in a maximum of $6,324.00 in tax). For 2009 and 2010, the employee’s share is 6.2% of gross compensation up to a limit of $106,800  of compensation (resulting in a maximum Social Security tax of  $6,621.60).[7] This limit, known as the Social Security Wage Base, goes up each year based on average national wages and, in general, at a faster rate than the Consumer Price Index  (CPI-U). For the calendar year 2011, the employee’s share has been  temporarily reduced to 4.2% of gross compensation, with a limit of $106,800.[8]  The employee’s share of the Medicare portion is 1.45% of wages, with no
limit on the amount of wage subject to the Medicare tax.[6]

The employer is also liable for 6.2% Social Security and 1.45% Medicare taxes,[9]  making the total Social Security tax 12.4% of wages, and the total Medicare tax 2.9%. (Self-employed people are responsible for the entire FICA percentage of 15.3% (= 12.4% + 2.9%), since they are in a sense both the employer and the employed; however, see the section on self-employed people for more details.)

If a worker starts a new job  halfway through the year and has already earned the wage base limit for  Social Security purposes, the new employer is not allowed to stop withholding  until the wage base limit has been earned with the new employer. There are some limited cases, such as a successor-predecessor transfer, in  which the payments that have already been withheld can be counted toward  the year-to-date total.

If a worker has overpaid toward Social Security by having more than one job or by having switched jobs during the year, that worker can file  a request to have that overpayment counted as tax paid when he or she files a Federal income tax return. If the taxpayer is due a refund, then the FICA overpayment is refunded.

Self-employed people

A tax similar to the FICA tax is imposed on the earnings of self-employed individuals, such as independent contractors and members of a partnership. This tax is imposed not by the Federal Insurance Contributions Act but instead by the Self-Employment Contributions Act of 1954, which is codified as Chapter 2 of Subtitle A of the Internal Revenue Code, 26 U.S.C. § 1401 through 26 U.S.C. § 1403  (the “SE Tax Act”). Under the SE Tax Act, self-employed people are  responsible for the entire percentage of 15.3% (= 12.4% [Soc. Sec.] +  2.9% [Medicare]); however, the 15.3% multiplier is applied to 92.35% of  the business’s net earnings from self-employment, rather than  100% of the gross earnings; the difference, 7.65%, is half of the 15.3%,  and makes the calculation fair in comparison to that of regular  (non-self-employed) employees. It does this by adjusting for the fact
that employees’ 7.65% share of their SE tax is multiplied against a  number (their gross income) that does not include the putative
“employer’s half” of the self-employment tax. In other words, it makes  the calculation fair because employees don’t get taxed on their  employers’ contribution of the second half of FICA, therefore  self-employed people shouldn’t get taxed on the second half of the  self-employment tax. Similarly, self-employed people also deduct half of  their self-employment tax (schedule SE) from their gross income on the  way to arriving at their adjusted gross income (AGI). This levels the  amount paid by self-employed persons in comparison to regular employees,  who don’t pay general income tax on their employers’ contribution of  the second half of FICA, just as they didn’t pay FICA tax on it either.[10][11]

These calculations are made on Schedule SE: Self-Employment Tax,  although that is not readily apparent to novice self-employed taxpayers,  owing to the schedule’s rather opaque name, which makes it sound like  it is part of the general federal income tax. Some taxpayers have  complained that Schedule SE’s title should be changed to something such  as “Self-Employment FICA Tax”, so that its separateness from the general  income tax is apparent,[12]  perhaps not realizing that the SE tax is not imposed by the Federal  Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) at all, and that neither SE taxes nor  FICA taxes are “income taxes” imposed under Chapter 1 of the Internal  Revenue Code.

Exemption for certain full-time students

A special case in FICA regulations includes exemptions for student  workers. Students enrolled at least half-time in a university and  working part-time for the same university are exempted from FICA payroll  taxes, so long as their relationship with the university is primarily  an educational one.[13]  Medical residents working full-time are not considered students and are  not exempt from FICA payroll taxes, according to a US Supreme Court  ruling in 2011.[14]  In order to be exempt from FICA payroll taxes, a student’s work must be  “incident to” pursuit of a course of study, which is rarely the case  with full-time employment.[14]

History

Prior to the Great Depression, the following presented difficulties for working-class Americans: [15]

  • The U.S. had no federal-government-mandated retirement savings;  consequently, for those people who had not voluntarily saved money  throughout their working lives, the end of their work careers was the  end of all income.
  • Similarly, the U.S. had no federal-government-mandated disability income insurance  to provide for citizens disabled by injuries (of any  kind—non-work-related); consequently, for most people, a disabling  injury meant no more income (since most people have little to no income  except earned income from work).
  • In addition, there was no federal-government-mandated disability income insurance to provide for people unable to ever work during their lives, such as anyone born with severe mental retardation.
  • Further, the U.S. had no federal-government-mandated health  insurance for the elderly; consequently, for many people, the end of  their work careers was the end of their ability to pay for medical care.
  • Finally, the U.S. had no federal-government-mandated health  insurance for all those who are not elderly; consequently, many people,  especially those with pre-existing conditions, have no ability to pay  for medical care.

In the 1930s, the New Deal introduced Social Security  to rectify the first three problems (retirement, injury-induced  disability, or congenital disability). It introduced the FICA tax as the  means to pay for Social Security.

In the 1960s, Medicare  was introduced to rectify the fourth problem (health care for the  elderly). The FICA tax was increased in order to pay for this expense.

 Criticism

Social Security regressivity debate

The Social Security component of the FICA tax is regressive, meaning the effective tax rate regresses (decreases) as income increases.[16] The Social Security component is actually a flat tax for wage levels under the Social Security Wage Base (see “Regular” employees  above). But since no tax is owed on wages above the Wage Base limit,  the total tax rate declines as wages increase beyond that limit. In  other words, for wage levels above the limit, the absolute dollar amount  of tax owed remains constant; since this number (the numerator) remains  constant while the wage level (the denominator) increases, the
effective tax rate steadily decreases as wage levels increase beyond the  Wage Base limit.

FICA is also not collected on unearned income,  including interest on savings deposits, stock dividends, and capital  gains such as profits from the sale of stock or real estate. The  proportion of total income which is exempt from FICA as “unearned  income” tends to rise with higher income brackets.

Some argue that since Social Security taxes are eventually returned  to taxpayers, with interest, in the form of Social Security benefits,  the regressiveness of the tax is effectively negated.[citation needed] That is, the taxpayer gets back what he or she put into the Social Security system. Others, including the Congressional Budget Office, point out that the Social Security system as a whole is progressive;
individuals with lower lifetime average wages receive a larger benefit  (as a percentage of their lifetime average wage income) than do  individuals with higher lifetime average wages.[17][18] …”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Insurance_Contributions_Act_tax

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Republican Debate September 12, 2011–Tea Party–CNN–Videos

Posted on September 13, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Demographics, Economics, Education, Employment, Energy, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Inflation, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Rants, Raves, Strategy, Talk Radio, Taxes, Technology, Unemployment, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Pronk Pops Show 45:September 14, 2011

Pronk Pops Show 44:September 7, 2011

Pronk Pops Show 43:August 31, 2011

Pronk Pops Show 42:August 24, 2011

Pronk Pops Show 41:August 17, 2011

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P1 The Tea Party Republican Debate CNN 9-12-2011

P2 The Tea Party Republican Debate CNN 9-12-2011

P3 The Tea Party Republican Debate CNN 9-12-2011

P4 The Tea Party Republican Debate CNN 9-12-2011

P5 The Tea Party Republican Debate CNN 9-12-2011

Tea Party Republican Debate Question #1: Social Security

Tea Party Republican Debate Question #2: How Do You Protect Seniors When So Much Goes To Defense?

Tea Party Republican Debate Question #3: What Would You Do To Get The Economy Moving Forward?

Tea Party Republican Debate Question #4: Can You Be Pro Business & Pro Worker?

Tea Party Republican Debate Question #5: Should The Federal Reserve Be Audited?

Tea Party Republican Debate Question #6: How Much Of My Pay Check Should I Be Allowed To Keep?

Tea Party Republican Debate Question #7: Executive Orders

Tea Party Republican Debate Question #8: What Is Your Plan To Reduce Healthcare Cost?

Tea Party Republican Debate Question #9: What Would You Do To Remove Illegal Immigrants?

Tea Party Republican Debate Question #10: Do You Plan To Decrease Defense Spending?

Tea Party Republican Debate Question #11: What Would You Bring To The White House?

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Ron Paul Highlights of September 12, 2011 Debate–Videos

Posted on September 13, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, Health Care, history, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Rants, Raves, Security, Strategy, Talk Radio, Taxes, Technology, Unemployment, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , |

Ron Paul Highlights in 9/12/2011 Presidential Debate

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SA@TheDC – Russell Kirk and 9/11

SA@TAC – Joe Sobran’s Conservative Foreign Policy

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Chalmers Johnson on American Hedgemony

Chalmers argues that the age of the “American Empire” is nearing its end.

Author of Blowback, The Sorrows of Empire, and Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic, Chalmers Johnson has literally written the book on the concept of American hegemony. A former naval officer and consultant to the C.I.A., he now serves as professor emeritus of UC San Diego. As co-founder and president of the Japan Policy Research Institute, Mr. Johnson also continues to promote public education about Asia’s role in the international community. In this exclusive interview, you will find out why the practice of empire building is, by no means, a thing of the past. As the United States continues to expand its military force around the globe, the consequences are being suffered by each and every one of us. (Written by Richard Castro)

“Dismantling the Empire” written by Chalmers Johnson-Epilogue-08-22-2011

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C Johnson: The US Global Empire -1/6

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C Johnson: The US Global Empire -3/6

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Why We Fight

Chalmers Johnson

“…Chalmers Ashby Johnson (August 6, 1931 – November 20, 2010)[1] was an American author and professor emeritus of the University of California, San Diego. He served in the Korean War, was a consultant for the CIA from 1967–1973, and chaired the Center for Chinese Studies at the University of California, Berkeley from 1967 to 1972.[2] He was also president and co-founder of the Japan Policy Research Institute (now based at the University of San Francisco), an organization promoting public education about Japan and Asia.[3] He wrote numerous books including, most recently, three examinations of the consequences of American Empire: Blowback, The Sorrows of Empire, and Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic.

Johnson was born in 1931 in Phoenix, Arizona. He earned a B.A. degree in Economics in 1953 and an M.A. and a Ph.D. in political science in 1957 and 1961 respectively. Both of his advanced degrees were from the University of California, Berkeley. Johnson met his wife Sheila, a 19 year-old junior at Berkeley, in 1956, and they were married in Reno, Nevada in May, 1957.[4]

During the Korean War, Johnson served as a naval officer in Japan.[5] He was the communications officer on a ship (the LST 883) “tasked with ferrying Chinese prisoners of war from South Korea back to North Korean ports.”[4] He taught political science at the University of California from 1962 until he retired from teaching in 1992. He was best known early in his career for his scholarship on the subjects of China and Japan.[6]

Johnson set the agenda for ten or fifteen years in social science scholarship on China with his book on peasant nationalism. His book MITI and the Japanese Miracle, on the Japanese Ministry of International Trade and Industry was the preëminent study of the country’s development and created the subfield of what could be called the political economy of development. He coined the term “developmental state”. As a public intellectual, he first led the “Japan revisionists” who critiqued American neoliberal economics with Japan as a model; their arguments faded from view as the Japanese economy stagnated in the mid-90s and beyond. During this period, Johnson acted as a consultant for the Office of National Estimates, part of the CIA, contributing to analysis of China and Maoism.[7]

Johnson was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1976. He served as Director of the Center for Chinese Studies (1967–72[2]) and Chair of the Political Science Department at Berkeley, and held a number of important academic posts in area studies. He was a strong believer in the importance of language and historical training for doing serious research. Late in his career he became well known as a critic of “rational choice” approaches, particularly in the study of Japanese politics and political economy.

Johnson is perhaps today best known as a sharp critic of American imperialism. His book Blowback (2000) won a prize in 2001 from the Before Columbus Foundation, and was re-issued in an updated version in 2004. Sorrows of Empire, published in 2004, updated the evidence and argument from Blowback for the post-9/11 environment, and Nemesis concludes the trilogy. Johnson was featured as an expert talking head in the Eugene Jarecki-directed film Why We Fight,[3] which won the 2005 Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival. In the past, Johnson has also written for the Los Angeles Times, the London Review of Books, Harper’s Magazine, and The Nation

 The Blowback series

Johnson believed that the enforcement of American hegemony over the world constitutes a new form of global empire. Whereas traditional empires maintained control over subject peoples via colonies, since World War II the US has developed a vast system of hundreds of military bases around the world where it has strategic interests. A long-time Cold Warrior, he applauded the dissolution of the Soviet Union: “I was a cold warrior. There’s no doubt about that. I believed the Soviet Union was a genuine menace. I still think so.”[8] But at the same time he experienced a political awakening after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, noting that instead of demobilizing its armed forces, the US accelerated its reliance on military solutions to problems both economic and political. The result of this militarism (as distinct from actual domestic defense) is more terrorism against the US and its allies, the loss of core democratic values at home, and an eventual disaster for the American economy. Of four books he wrote on this topic, the first three are referred to as The Blowback Trilogy:

  • Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire

Chalmers Johnson summarized the intent of Blowback in the final chapter of Nemesis.

“In Blowback, I set out to explain why we are hated around the world. The concept “blowback” does not just mean retaliation for things our government has done to and in foreign countries. It refers to retaliation for the numerous illegal operations we have carried out abroad that were kept totally secret from the American public. This means that when the retaliation comes — as it did so spectacularly on September 11, 2001 — the American public is unable to put the events in context. So they tend to support acts intended to lash out against the perpetrators, thereby most commonly preparing the ground for yet another cycle of blowback. In the first book in this trilogy, I tried to provide some of the historical background for understanding the dilemmas we as a nation confront today, although I focused more on Asia — the area of my academic training — than on the Middle East.”[9]
  • The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic

Chalmers Johnson summarizes the intent of The Sorrows of Empire in the final chapter of Nemesis.

The Sorrows of Empire was written during the American preparations for and launching of the invasions and occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq. I began to study our continuous military buildup since World War II and the 737 military bases we currently maintain in other people’s countries. This empire of bases is the concrete manifestation of our global hegemony, and many of the blowback-inducing wars we have conducted had as their true purpose the sustaining and expanding of this network. We do not think of these overseas deployments as a form of empire; in fact, most Americans do not give them any thought at all until something truly shocking, such as the treatment of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, brings them to our attention. But the people living next door to these bases and dealing with the swaggering soldiers who brawl and sometimes rape their women certainly think of them as imperial enclaves, just as the people of ancient Iberia or nineteenth-century India knew that they were victims of foreign colonization.”[9]
  • Nemesis: The Last Days of the American Republic

Chalmers Johnson summarizes the intent of the book Nemesis.

“In Nemesis, I have tried to present historical, political, economic, and philosophical evidence of where our current behavior is likely to lead. Specifically, I believe that to maintain our empire abroad requires resources and commitments that will inevitably undercut our domestic democracy and in the end produce a military dictatorship or its civilian equivalent. The founders of our nation understood this well and tried to create a form of government – a republic – that would prevent this from occurring. But the combination of huge standing armies, almost continuous wars, military Keynesianism, and ruinous military expenses have destroyed our republican structure in favor of an imperial presidency. We are on the cusp of losing our democracy for the sake of keeping our empire. Once a nation is started down that path, the dynamics that apply to all empires come into play – isolation, overstretch, the uniting of forces opposed to imperialism, and bankruptcy. Nemesis stalks our life as a free nation.”[9]
  • Dismantling the Empire: America’s Last Best Hope

Johnson outlines how the United States can reverse American hegemony. …”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1JvSsWTCGFI&feature=related

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Russell Kirk–The Traditional Conservative That Predicted 9/11–Videos

Posted on September 11, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Economics, Education, Employment, Energy, Enivornment, European History, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Immigration, Inflation, Investments, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, Natural Gas, Oil, People, Philosophy, Politics, Private Sector, Public Sector, Raves, Security, Talk Radio, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , |

SA@TheDC – Russell Kirk and 9/11

SA@TAC – Joe Sobran’s Conservative Foreign Policy

SA@TAC – What’s a ‘Neoconservative?’

SA@TheDC – Does Attacking Neoconservatism Reflect Racism or Reality?

SA@TAC – A Conservative Foreign Policy Comeback?

SA@TAC- Who’s an ‘Isolationist?’

SA@TAC – The End of Right-Wing Progressivism?

Ten Conservative Principles

By Russell Kirk

First, the conservative believes that there exists an enduring moral order.

Second, the conservative adheres to custom, convention, and continuity.

Third, conservatives believe in what may be called the principle of prescription.

Fourth, conservatives are guided by their principle of prudence.

Fifth, conservatives pay attention to the principle of variety.

Sixth, conservatives are chastened by their principle of imperfectability

Seventh, conservatives are persuaded that freedom and property are closely linked.

Eighth, conservatives uphold voluntary community, quite as they oppose involuntary collectivism.

Ninth, the conservative perceives the need for prudent restraints upon power and upon human passions.

Tenth, the thinking conservative understands that permanence and change must be recognized and reconciled in a vigorous society.

http://www.kirkcenter.org/index.php/detail/ten-conservative-principles/

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Russell Kirk’s Ten Conservative Principles

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See Something–Say Something–Son of Stimulus Spending Speech Scares Stockholders–Stagflation–Videos

Posted on September 11, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, Business, Communications, Demographics, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Inflation, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Private Sector, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Resources, Science, Security, Sports, Strategy, Talk Radio, Taxes, Technology, Transportation, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , |

Obama’s Jobs Speech To Congress- Full Video

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Dirty Bomb New York City Terrorist Attack Feared–Depleted Uranium–Videos

Posted on September 10, 2011. Filed under: American History, Books, Communications, Demographics, Diasters, Dirty Bomb, Economics, Energy, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government spending, history, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Nuclear, Nuclear Power, People, Philosophy, Politics, Technology, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

9/11 anniversary terror threat update

Boogeyman coming – NY, Washington tighten security  – YouTube HD

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A New 9-11 Terror Plot In NY & DC: U.S. Authorities Investigating

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Sources: Authorities Concerned About Possible Dirty Bomb, Times Square Strike

Say Al Qaeda Eager To Hit Where They Failed, Just Like 9/11 Following 1993

“…Terrorism is theater and this is the stage,” NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly said. “This is right now probably the world’s biggest stage. “

There was a lot of security you could see Friday in the Big Apple, especially in Times Square, because, as sources told Kramer, the intelligence includes information that al Qaeda wants to finish the job that started with Faisal Shahzad’s failed car bomb attempt in May 2010.

Top security officials told Kramer this is the al Qaeda way. Their 1993 attempt to topple the World Trade Center failed, so they came back again on 9/11. Shahzad’s car bomb fizzled, so now they want to try again.

But that’s only half of the problem. Officials are worried that this time it could be a dirty bomb.

“We have to think about a dirty bomb, where you take radiological material and mix it with conventional explosives,” Kelly said.

Kramer recently talked exclusively with Kelly about the possibility of a dirty bomb, but now sources said the classroom drills might have to be put into practice. Intelligence sources said the terrorists could be trying to make a dirty bomb this time my mixing radiological isotopes with an explosive device.

That’s why the NYPD is deploying all kinds of radiation detectors, panel trucks with sophisticated instruments. On Friday, cops had personal radiation detectors on their belts, and radiation detectors are being used by police within a 50-mile radius of New York City — in New Jersey, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania and on Long Island. …”

http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2011/09/09/times-square-could-be-target-of-dirty-bomb-sources-say-police-on-heightened-alert/

Dirty Bomb Feared in Alleged NYC Terrorist Plot

Saturday, 10 Sep 2011 09:18 AM

By Amy Woods

Read more on Newsmax.com: Dirty  Bomb Feared in Alleged NYC Terrorist Plot
Important: Do You Support
Pres. Obama’s Re-Election? Vote
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“…A plot by al-Qaida to attack America — specifically New York City — in the days
leading up to reported the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy has worsened.
Authorities believe the threat could involve a dirty bomb, according to CBSNew York.

The New York Police
Department tightened security Friday by setting up a series of checkpoints where
random vehicle stops were conducted. At times, traffic came to a
standstill.

“Terrorism is theater, and this is the stage,” NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly
said. “This is right now probably the world’s biggest stage.”

The dirty-bomb scare has dialed up the drama.

“We have to think about a dirty bomb, where you take radiological material and mix it with conventional
explosives,” Kelly said.

CBSNew York reported that intelligence sources are concerned the terrorists — three suspects are being sought, including one
American — have concocted a device containing both radiological and explosive
materials. …”

Read more on Newsmax.com: Dirty Bomb Feared in Alleged NYC Terrorist Plot

http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/DirtyBombFearedinAllegedNYCTerroristPlot/2011/09/10/id/410434?s=al&promo_code=D058-1

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White House takes possible terror threat seriously

“…The Obama administration is taking serious the still unconfirmed intelligence tip
of a possible al-Qaida plot tied to the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11
terrorist attacks, counterterrorism adviser John Brennan said Sunday.

The  threat reported to authorities Wednesday night remains “specific and
credible,” Brennan said during interviews with “Fox News Sunday” and
CBS’ “Face the Nation.”

“Again, it’s not confirmed, but the president wants to make sure that we leave no stone
unturned,” he said. “And that’s what the intelligence, law enforcement
and homeland security communities are doing.”

Investigators  have chased a tip that al-Qaida may have sent three men to the U.S. on a
mission to detonate a car bomb in either Washington or New York. But
officials have said they’ve found no evidence al-Qaida has sneaked
anyone into the country.

Brennan said officials are “looking at travel data, other types of pieces of
information and trying to correlate them against that reporting that has
come in.”

“It’s not confirmed but we are not relaxing at all,” he said. “This is a 24/7, round-the-clock effort by
all elements of the U.S. counterterrorism community both here in the
United States as well as abroad.” …”

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_TERROR_THREAT?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2011-09-10-05-14-14

New York City Steps Up Security In Light Of ‘Specific, Credible But Unconfirmed’ Threat

September 9, 2011

“…NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The morning after officials said there was a “specific, credible but unconfirmed” terror threat against New York City and Washington D.C. related to the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, New Yorkers were seeing a beefed-up response by the New York Police Department.

The threat involves non-specific car bomb attacks, possibly targeting bridges and tunnels here. The information came from an overseas source which Mayor Michael Bloomberg said had been credible in the past. …”

http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2011/09/09/new-york-city-steps-up-security-in-light-of-specific-credible-but-unconfirmed-threat/

Dirty Bomb

“…A dirty bomb is a speculative radiological weapon that combines radioactive material with conventional explosives.  The purpose of the weapon is to contaminate the area around the  explosion with radioactive material, hence the attribute “dirty”.

Though a radiological dispersal device (RDD) would be designed to disperse radioactive material over a large area, a bomb
that uses conventional explosives would likely have more immediate  lethal effect than the radioactive material. At levels created from most  probable sources, not enough radiation would be present to cause severe illness or death. A test explosion and subsequent calculations done by the United States Department of Energy  found that assuming nothing is done to clean up the affected area and  everyone stays in the affected area for one year, the radiation exposure  would be “fairly high”, but not fatal.[1] Recent analysis of the nuclear fallout from the Chernobyl disaster  confirms this, showing that the effect on many people in the
surrounding area, although not those in close proximity, was almost  negligible.[2]

Since a dirty bomb is unlikely to cause many deaths, many do not consider this to be a weapon of mass destruction.[3] Its purpose would presumably be to create psychological, not physical, harm through ignorance, mass panic, and terror. For this reason dirty bombs are sometimes called “weapons of mass disruption”. Additionally, containment and decontamination  of thousands of victims, as well as decontamination of the affected  area might require considerable time and expense, rendering areas partly
unusable and causing economic damage. …”

“…Dirty bombs and terrorism

Since the 9/11  attacks the fear of terrorist groups using dirty bombs has increased significantly, which has been frequently reported in the media.[4] The meaning of terrorism used here, is described by the U.S. Department of Defense’s  definition, which is “the calculated use of unlawful violence or threat  of unlawful violence to inculcate fear; intended to coerce or to intimidate governments or societies in the pursuit of goals that are generally political, religious, or ideological objectives”.[5] There have only ever been two cases of caesium-containing bombs, and neither was detonated. Both involved Chechnya. The first attempt of radiological terror was carried out in November 1995 by a group of Chechen separatists, who buried a caesium-137 source wrapped in explosives at the Izmaylovsky Park in Moscow. A Chechen rebel leader alerted the media, the bomb was never activated, and the incident amounted to a mere publicity stunt.[6]

.

In December 1998, a second attempt was announced by the Chechen Security Service, who discovered a container filled with radioactive  materials attached to an explosive mine. The bomb was hidden near a railway line in the suburban area Argun, ten miles east of the Chechen capital of Grozny. The same Chechen separatist group was suspected to be involved.[7]  Despite the increased fear of a dirty bombing attack, it is hard to assess whether the actual risk of such an event has increased significantly.[8]
The following discussions on implications, effects and probability of an attack, as well as indications of terror groups planning such, are based mainly on statistics, qualified guessing and a few comparable scenarios.

 Effect of a dirty bomb explosion

When dealing with the implications of a dirty bomb attack, there are two main areas to be addressed: (i) the civilian impact, not only dealing with immediate casualties and long term health issues, but also the psychological  effect and then (ii) the economic impact. With no prior event of a  dirty bomb detonation, it is considered difficult to predict the impact.  Several analyses have predicted that RDDs will neither sicken nor kill many people.[9] …”

“…Possibility of terrorist groups using dirty bombs

The present assessment of the possibility of terrorists using a dirty bomb is based on cases involving one terrorist organization, namely Al-Qaeda.  This is because the attempts by this group to acquire a dirty bomb are the most well-described in the literature, in part due to the attention this group received for their involvement in the 9/11 attacks.

On 8 May 2002, José Padilla  (a.k.a. Abdulla al-Muhajir) was arrested on suspicion that he was an  Al-Qaeda terrorist planning to detonate a dirty bomb in the U.S. This suspicion was raised by information obtained from an arrested top Al-Qaeda official in U.S. custody, Abu Zubaydah,  who under interrogation revealed that the organization was close to constructing a dirty bomb. Although Padilla had not obtained radioactive  material or explosives at the time of arrest, law enforcement authorities uncovered evidence that he was on reconnaissance for usable radioactive material and possible locations for detonation.[27]  It has been doubted whether José Padilla was preparing such an attack,  and it has been claimed that the arrest was highly politically  motivated, given the pre-9/11 security lapses by the CIA and FBI.[28] Later, these charges against José Padilla were dropped. Although
there was no hard evidence for Al-Qaeda possessing a dirty bomb, there is a broad agreement that Al-Qaeda poses a potential dirty bomb attack  threat[29] because they need to overcome the alleged image that the U.S. and its allies are winning the war against terror.[4]  A further concern is the argument, that “if suicide bombers are prepared to die flying airplanes into building, it is also conceivable that they are prepared to forfeit their lives building dirty bombs”.[30]  If this would be the case, both the cost and complexity of any protective systems needed to allow the perpetrator to survive long enough to both build the bomb and carry out the attack, would be significantly reduced.[11]

Several other captives were alleged to have played a role in this plot.[31] Guantanamo captive Binyam Mohammed has alleged he was subjected to extraordinary rendition, and that his confession of a role in the plot was coerced through torture.[32][33] He sought access through the American and United Kingdom legal systems to evidence he was tortured.[34][35] Guantanamo military commission  prosecutors continue to maintain the plot was real, and charged Binyam
for his alleged role in 2008. However they dropped this charge in
October 2008, but maintain they could prove the charge and were only
dropping the charge to expedite proceedings. US District Court Judge Emmet G. Sullivan insisted that the administration still had to hand over the evidence that justified the dirty bomb charge, and admonished United States Department of Justice lawyers that dropping the charge:

“raises serious questions in this court’s mind about whether those allegations were ever true.”

In 2006, Dhiren Barot from North London pleaded guilty of conspiring to murder innocent people within the United Kingdom and United States using a radioactive dirty bomb. He planned to target underground car parks within the UK and buildings in the U.S. such as the International Monetary Fund, World Bank buildings in Washington D.C., the New York Stock Exchange, Citigroup buildings and the Prudential Financial buildings in Newark, New Jersey. He also faces 12 other charges including, conspiracy to commit public nuisance,  seven charges of making a record of information for terrorist purposes
and four charges of possessing a record of information for terrorist purposes. Experts say if the plot to use the dirty bomb was carried out  “it would have been unlikely to cause deaths, but was designed to affect  about 500 people.”[36]

In January 2009, a leaked FBI report described the results of a search of the Maine home of James G. Cummings, a white supremacist  who had been shot and killed by his wife. Investigators found four one-gallon containers of 35 percent hydrogen peroxide, uranium, thorium,  lithium metal, aluminum powder, beryllium,  boron, black iron oxide and magnesium as well as literature on how to build dirty bombs and information about cesium-137, strontium-90 and cobalt-60, radioactive materials.[37] Officials confirmed the veracity of the report but stated that the public was never at risk.[38]

In April 2009, the Security Service of Ukraine announced the arrest of a legislator and two businessmen from the Ternopil Oblast. Seized in the undercover sting operation was 3.7 kilograms of what was claimed by the suspects during the sale as plutonium-239, used mostly in nuclear reactors and nuclear weapons, but was determined by experts to likely be americium, a “widely used” radioactive material which is commonly used in amounts of less than 1 milligram in smoke detectors, but can also be used in a dirty bomb. The suspects reportedly wanted US$ 10 million for the material, which the Security Service determined was produced in Russia during the era of the Soviet Union and smuggled into Ukraine through a neighboring country.[39][40]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dirty_bomb

September 11 2001 Video

Holmes: America’s Response to 9-11 -1/5

Holmes: America’s Response to 9-11 -2/5

Holmes: America’s Response to 9-11 -3/5

Holmes: America’s Response to 9-11 -4/5

A Time-Lapse Map of Every Nuclear Explosion Since 1945 – by  Isao Hashimoto

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Ron Paul–Videos

Posted on September 10, 2011. Filed under: Agriculture, American History, Babies, Banking, Blogroll, Books, Business, Climate, College, Communications, Computers, Crime, Culture, Demographics, Diasters, Economics, Education, Employment, Energy, Enivornment, Farming, Federal Government, Films, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, Health Care, history, Homes, Immigration, Inflation, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Medicine, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, Natural Gas, Nuclear Power, Oil, People, Philosophy, Politics, Private Sector, Psychology, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Religion, Resources, Science, Security, Strategy, Talk Radio, Taxes, Technology, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Ron Paul Responds To Barack Obama’s Jobs Speech–Videos

Posted on September 10, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, Business, Communications, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, government, history, Immigration, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Resources, Taxes, Unemployment, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , |

Ron Paul Responds To President Obama’s Joint Session Of Congress Address

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G. Edward Griffin – The Collectivist Conspiracy–Videos

Paul Peace Prosperity Prize–P4–Campaign for Liberty–Videos

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‘Ponzi’ President Obama Proposes Cutting Social Security By Cutting Payroll Taxes–Totally Irresponsible–Videos

Posted on September 9, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, Books, Business, Communications, Crime, Demographics, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, government, government spending, history, Inflation, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Private Sector, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Security, Taxes, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , |

Government Social Security | Social Security Scheme | History of Social Security

Social Security and Medicare to go bankrupt earlier than expected – CBS News

Deficits, Debts and Unfunded Liabilities: The Consequences of Excessive Government Spending

Ron Paul – End Medicare, Social Security & Medicaid?

John Stossel – Government’s Ponzi Scheme

Power of the Market – Social Security

Milton Friedman – The Social Security Myth

Your Boss Doesn’t Really Pay Your Social Security Tax

How Does a Ponzi Scheme Work?

Your Money: the Ponzi Scheme Explained

Dick Armey: Social Security is a Ponzi scheme

Rand Paul In The ’90s: Medicare Is Socialism And Social Security Is A Ponzi Scheme

Limbaugh – ‘I Want To Applaud’ Perry’s Claim That Social Security Is A Ponzi Scheme

Paul Ryan:  Hiding Spending Doesn’t Reduce Spending

Peter Schiff, Ron Paul, Max Keiser – Social Security Ponzi Scheme

Two Former Social Security Officials Admit The System Is Not Much Different from a Ponzi Scheme

Perry Fires At Rove & Romney: Social Security Is A “Ponzi Scheme” And A “Monstrous Lie”

Fox ‘Straight News’ Anchor MacCallum Defends Perry’s Claim That Social Security Is A ‘Ponzi Scheme’

Social Security and Medicare use a pay as you go system to fund Social Security and Medicare benefits to those who are entitled to them.

Current workers pay Social Security and Medicare payroll taxes.

These tax revenues are used to pay the benefits to Social Security recipients and those on Medicare who have incurred medical bills.

Both Social Security and Medicare are running deficits–they are paying out more in benefits than they are collecting in payroll taxes.

President Obama is proposing that payroll taxes for Social Security  be cut.

In other words for a period of time the current workers can stop paying into the Ponzi scheme of Social Security.

This only increase the size of the Social Security  deficit and is fiscally irresponsible.

To correct the situation requires either the raising of payroll taxes or the cutting of benefits to Social Security recipients.

Few Democratic or Republicans politicians will clearly tell you these facts.

Both Social Security and Medicare must be reformed so they are no longer a Ponzi scheme run and controlled by the federal government.

Instead of the federal government running the Ponzi scheme and spending your money as it sees fit, individuals need to control and own their retirement and health insurance plan accounts.

If a private retirement or health insurance plan was run like Social Security or Medicare, they would go broke and those responsible might very well go to jail for fraud and theft of funds.

Texas Governor Rick Perry and Texas Congressman Ron Paul are right, Social Security is a Ponzi scheme.

This Ponzi scheme for funding Social Security and Medicare needs to be stopped.

Paul has an even better idea.

Let’s give  every American the right to opt out of Social Security and Medicare.

These individuals could purchase their own retirement and health insurance plans that they own and control.

Those Americans all ready receiving Social Security and Medicare and those electing to stay in the current system would be permitted to do so.

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The Voice of The American People–drinkingwithbob–Endores Ron Paul–The Only Legitimate Candidate–Videos

Posted on September 9, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, Business, Communications, Economics, Education, Employment, Energy, Enivornment, European History, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, government, government spending, history, Inflation, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Private Sector, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Resources, Taxes, Technology, Unemployment, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , |

Ron Paul, the ONLY Legitimate Candidate…

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Senator Rand Paul Response To President Obama’s Jobs Speech–The Tea Party Plan For Putting Americans Back To Work–Videos

Posted on September 9, 2011. Filed under: Banking, Blogroll, Business, Communications, Economics, Fiscal Policy, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money | Tags: , , |

Sen. Rand Paul Responds To President Obama’s Jobs Speech – 09/08/11

Sen. Rand Paul on Freedom Watch – 09/07/11

I could not have said it better myself.

Three cheers for Senator Paul.

Senator Rand Paul for President in 2021 after eight years, 2013-2021 of Congressman Ron Paul.

The Tea Party plan for putting Americans back to work:

1. Balance the budget.

2. Replace all Federal taxes with The FairTax

3. Repeal Obamacare

4. Repeal Dodd-Frank

5. End the Fed, IRS, and EPA

6. Enforce all immigration laws

7. Get the United States out of the United Nations and the United Nation out of the United States.

8. Bring the troops home

9. Close permanently eight to ten federal departments.

10. Replace Social Security and Medicare with a personal retirement and health insurance plan owned and controlled by the individual and not the Federal government.

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President Obama Jobs Speech September 8, 2011–Videos

Posted on September 8, 2011. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Demographics, Economics, Education, Employment, Energy, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, government, government spending, Health Care, history, Homes, Immigration, Inflation, Investments, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, People, Philosophy, Politics, Private Sector, Public Sector, Rants, Raves, Regulations, Strategy, Talk Radio, Unions, Video, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , |

President Obama Presents American Jobs Act

President Obama Jobs speech September 8, 2011 Part 1

President Obama Jobs speech September 8, 2011 Part 2

Sen. Rand Paul Responds To President Obama’s Jobs Speech – 09/08/11

Bachmann Response to Obama

“We’re Living In A Failed Presidency & A Failed Economy!” Rand Paul Responds To Obama Speech

Full Webcast: Obama’s “American Jobs Act” analysis

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