December 21, 2012

Unbelievable

Bloomberg: No One Has ‘Defended the Second Amendment as Much as I Have’


Mr. Bloomberg claimed to be the strongest defender of the Second Amendment around. "I don’t think there’s anybody that’s defended the Second Amendment as much as I have, Ray,” Mr. Bloomberg said to a caller who asked him why he was “so against” the constitutional passage.


Obscenely outrageous blatant lies like that are among the top reasons that I would not vote for Bloomberg for anything other than a one-way ticket out of this country. He has been a noisy and zealous gun-control and gun-ban advocate for years. Whether or not you support his public positions, it is a demonstrated and undeniable fact that he can not be trusted to ever tell the truth. If Bloomberg tells you the sun is going to rise in the east, I recommend personal verification that it does before believing him.

December 12, 2012

Corruption, in Brief

Gov't arrests illegal immigrant Senate intern

U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez employed as an unpaid intern in his Senate office an illegal immigrant who was a registered sex offender, now under arrest by immigration authorities, The Associated Press has learned. The Homeland Security Department instructed federal agents not to arrest him until after Election Day, a U.S. official involved in the case told the AP.

...Authorities in Hudson County notified ICE agents in early October that they suspected Sanchez was an illegal immigrant who was a registered sex offender and who may be eligible to be deported. ICE agents in New Jersey notified superiors at the Homeland Security Department because they considered it a potentially high profile arrest, and DHS instructed them not to arrest Sanchez until after the November election, one U.S. official told the AP. ICE officials complained that the delay was inappropriate, but DHS directed them several times not to act, the official said.
 
That's right, the cabinet agency charged with protecting Americans instructed one of their sub-agenices to leave an illegal alien sex offender at large because he worked for a Democratic Senator and his arrest might have embarrassed Democrats and affected the elections. And when said sub-agency made repeated requests to make the arrest, they were repeatedly turned down for purely political reasons.

Menendez's pre-election history with sex scandals didn't keep him from getting re-elected by a very comfortable margin, so it probably wasn't Menendez that DHS was worried about. Though this latest revelation does make one wonder if Sanchez-the-illegal-alien-sex-offender-and-Menendez-intern was booking Bob's travel itineraries.

That's the essence of political corruption, as compared to monetary corruption. Courtesy this time of Big Sister instead of Big Brother.

November 29, 2012

Capital Flight, Again

Two-thirds of millionaires left Britain to avoid 50% tax rate


In the 2009-10 tax year, more than 16,000 people declared an annual income of more than £1 million to HM Revenue and Customs.

This number fell to just 6,000 after Gordon Brown introduced the new 50p top rate of income tax shortly before the last general election.
The figures have been seized upon by the Conservatives to claim that increasing the highest rate of tax actually led to a loss in revenues for the Government.

It is believed that rich Britons moved abroad or took steps to avoid paying the new levy by reducing their taxable incomes.

Astounding. Who could have ever predicted it? Except everyone with three or more neurons to rub together.

September 28, 2012

Perverse Results Guaranteed

France taxes rich and business to slash deficit


President Francois Hollande's Socialist government unveiled sharp tax hikes on business and the rich on Friday in a 2013 budget aimed at showing France has the fiscal rigor to remain at the core of the euro zone.
The package will recoup 30 billion euros ($39 billion) for the public purse with a goal of narrowing the deficit to 3.0 percent of national output next year from 4.5 percent this year - France's toughest single belt-tightening in 30 years.
Anyone want to take bets on the over/under of moneys actually collected by the new tax rates? I want the under, with a side bet on the rate of higher-income individuals moving out of French taxing jurisdiction.

UPDATE 10/07/12: Rich businessmen pulling out of France as tax-hit looms Yeah, who could've seen that coming?

UPDATE 10/16/12: French business erupts in fury against "disastrous" Fran├žois Hollande
France is sliding into a grave economic crisis and risks a full-blown “hurricane” as investors flee rocketing tax rates, the country’s business federation has warned.

August 21, 2012

Ponder This

California Farm Labor Shortage 'Worst It's Been, Ever'


When asked if any local residents have come out to apply to work in the fields, Craig Underwood replied, "None. Absolutely none." He is even having trouble finding truck drivers and other semi-skilled labor for jobs that pay $12-$18 an hour.
California ranks 3rd in unemployment in the United States at  10.7%, "losing" only to Nevada and Rhode Island. Think about that.

August 07, 2012

CORRUPT

Geithner, Treasury drove cutoff of non-union Delphi workers’ pensions
The move, made in 2009 while the Obama administration implemented its auto bailout plan, appears to have been made solely because those retirees were not members of labor unions.

The internal government emails contradict sworn testimony, in federal court and before Congress, given by several Obama administration figures. They also indicate that the administration misled lawmakers and the courts about the sequence of events surrounding the termination of those non-union pensions, and that administration figures violated federal law.
Do tell. Remember this when people claim that the auto industry bailout was to "save the American auto industry." No, it wasn't. It was to save the UAW's ass and pay them off for their cruical support of the Democrats that allowed them total control of the government for two years. Which is why we the taxpayers are still out over $50 BILLION, and why those who would have gotten a partial payback from an ordinary bankruptcy process got near-nothing, while the unions were made whole AND were gifted a major ownership share in the "new" Government Motors.

July 03, 2012

Capital Flight, In Action

Observations from Walter Russell Mead:
New York has some of the bluest laws and policies around. But the net result isn’t a city that becomes more and more prosperously and stably blue. The result is a city from which the middle class is steadily exiled. The bluer you are, the more likely you are to turn into a wealth-polarized dystopia of tycoons and hotel maids.
Thanks to the financial bubble and the huge federal bailout, New York has managed relatively well for the last few years. But it’s very hard to see what jobs will replace the Wall Street mid-level positions—and where the tax revenue will come from to support the city’s huge bureaucracy and high fixed costs.
The blue social model devours its own.
I think San Francisco may be ahead of them. 

May 22, 2012

Welfare Socialism in Macrocosm

What do you do when thanks to years of overspending and failure to live within your income, your credit sucks? Do you [a] work on improving your obviously horrid budgetary habits, or [b] try to suck off  the good credit of someone more restrained and prudent by having them co-sign your loans, thereby dragging their credit rating down some?

Well, now we know how many of Europe's governments would answer that question.

Germany rules out common euro bonds

Germany refused to share the debt burden of stressed eurozone peers on Tuesday, ignoring two of the most influential international economic bodies which offered support for proposals championed by Paris, Rome and Brussels ahead of a summit.


In case you couldn't guess, the "two influential international economic bodies" are the OECD and the IMF, who will be next in line to be asked to prop up the profligate spending. Basically what it boils down to is that France's new socialist president, among others, would like Germany to pick up the tab for bailing out mismanaged spendthrift EU nations such as Greece. With Germany saying nein on "loaning" any more money directly to Greece, Fran├žois Hollande's solution is to back-door the deal by dragging germany into co-signing more bad loans.

They're running out of other people's money.

May 07, 2012

NANNY. STATE.

Parents: Rule’s half-baked
State’s junk food ban could take bite out of school fundraisers
Bake sales, the calorie-laden standby cash-strapped classrooms, PTAs and booster clubs rely on, will be outlawed from public schools as of Aug. 1 as part of new no-nonsense nutrition standards ...  
At a minimum, the nosh clampdown targets so-called “competitive” foods — those sold or served during the school day in hallways, cafeterias, stores and vending machines outside the regular lunch program, including bake sales, holiday parties and treats dished out to reward academic achievement. But state officials are pushing schools to expand the ban 24/7 to include evening, weekend and community events such as banquets, door-to-door candy sales and football games.
As a parent of two teenagers, I've got to say that if not for "competitive" foods, a lot of students simply would not eat at school. Not only do school lunches make the word "unappetizing" a HUGE understatement, but the crowding during lunch periods in large schools at times makes getting and eating the school slop literally impossible.

If the people of Massachussets are going to stand idly by and put up with this kind of nanny-state autocracy extending outside the school 24/7 to all school-related events, then "sheeple" is looking less ad hominem and more descriptive.

April 09, 2012

More Strong Currency Joy!

OK, so it's really a followup on my March 1 post, but it fulfills my personal requirement of posting at least once a month.

Rousseff seeks US support in ‘currency war’
In a meeting that highlighted the occasionally uneasy relationship between the two countries despite their potential to be strong partners, Ms Rousseff said that excessive monetary expansion in the US and Europe was hampering growth in countries such as Brazil.
Duh. As I keep saying, if you like the idea of a strong dollar, well, you should be careful what you wish for. You might get it.

March 12, 2012

SUCKER

Specter says Obama ditched him after he provided 60th vote to pass health reform
Former Sen. Arlen Specter (Pa.) writes in a new book that President Obama ditched him in the 2010 election after he helped Obama win the biggest legislative victory of his term by passing healthcare reform.

Specter also claims that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) did not uphold his promise to grant him seniority accrued over 28 years of service in the Senate as a Republican.
Yes, Arlen, you got the old pump & dump. Are you surprised? But hey, you can't spend your whole life worrying about your mistakes ...

March 01, 2012

The Joys of A Strong Currency

I've always said that we have more to fear from deflation than from inflation. Not that excessive inflation is good, mind you, but a certain amount is actually healthy in a growing economy. But deflation, that really stings ...

Brazil declares new ‘currency war’

Yep. They're quite put out over their currency getting stronger. With good reason.

February 27, 2012

Is This The Change You Were Hoping For?

Obama to cut healthcare benefits for active duty and retired US military
The Obama administration’s proposed defense budget calls for military families and retirees to pay sharply more for their healthcare, while leaving unionized civilian defense workers’ benefits untouched.
Well, of course. He needs the unions, and he's not going to get the uniformed vote no way, no how.

January 17, 2012

Well, DUH!!!

Ron Paul Quietly Plots Backup Strategy While Seeking the Nomination
If the campaign comes up short at the convention, Benton says the plan is to use all the delegates awarded to Paul as a bargaining chip to force the Republican Party to stick to its limited government platform.
Ya think? This has always been a prime object of running for those who know they're massive underdogs. The scramble for delegates to use as poker chips in the intra-party factional power struggle at the convention has been a part of the system since parties formed and started holding their conventions.