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Mack Ravensline

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545
« on: July 23, 2009, 07:43:24 AM »

545 vs. 300,000,000 (Republicans & Democrats Alike - No One Is Blameless)

EVERY CITIZEN NEEDS TO READ THIS AND THINK ABOUT WHAT THIS JOURNALIST HAS WRITTEN IN THIS MESSAGE. READ IT AND THEN REALLY THINK ABOUT OUR CURRENT POLITICAL DEBACLE.

Charley Reese has been a journalist for 49 years.



545 PEOPLE
By Charlie Reese

Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.

Have you ever wondered, if both the Democrats and the Republicans are against deficits, WHY do we have deficits?

Have you ever wondered, if all the politicians are against inflation and high taxes, WHY do we have inflation and high taxes?

You and I don't propose a federal budget. The President does.

You and I don't have the Constitutional authority to vote on appropriations. The House of Representatives does.

You and I don't write the tax code, Congress does.

You and I don't set fiscal policy, Congress does.

You and I don't control monetary policy, the Federal Reserve Bank does.

One hundred Senators, 435 Congressmen, one President, and nine Supreme Court justices -- 545 human beings out of the 300 million are directly, legally, morally, and individually responsible for the domestic problems that plague this country.

I excluded the members of the Federal Reserve Board because that problem was created by the Congress. In 1913, Congress delegated its Constitutional duty to provide a sound currency to a federally chartered, but private, central bank.

I excluded all the special interests and lobbyists for a sound reason. They have no legal authority. They have no ability to coerce a senator, a congressman, or a President to do one cotton-picking thing. I don't care if they offer a politician $1 million dollars in cash. The politician has the power to accept or reject it. No matter what the lobbyist promises, it is the legislator's responsibility to determine how he votes.

Those 545 human beings spend much of their energy convincing you that what they did is not their fault. They cooperate in this common con regardless of party. What separates a politician from a normal human being is an excessive amount of gall. No normal human being would have the gall of a Speaker, who stood up and criticized the President for creating deficits. The president can only propose a budget. He cannot force the Congress to accept it.

The Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land, gives sole responsibility to the House of Representatives for originating and approving appropriations and taxes.

Who is the speaker of the House? Nancy Pelosi. She is the leader of the majority party. She and fellow House members, not the President, can approve any budget they want. If the President vetoes it, they can pass it over his veto if they agree to.

It seems inconceivable to me that a nation of 300 million can not replace 545 people who stand convicted -- by present facts -- of incompetence and irresponsibility. I can't think of a single domestic problem that is not traceable directly to those 545 people. When you fully grasp the plain truth that 545 people exercise the power of the federal government, then it must follow that what exists is what they want to exist.

If the tax code is unfair, it's because they want it unfair.

If the budget is in the red, it's because they want it in the red ..

If the Army & Marines are in  IRAQ  , it's because they want them in  IRAQ  .

If they do not receive Social Security but are on an elite retirement plan not available to the people, it's because they want it that way.

There are no insoluble government problems.

Do not let these 545 people shift the blame to bureaucrats, whom they hire and whose jobs they can abolish; to lobbyists, whose gifts and advice they can reject; to regulators, to whom they give the power to regulate and from whom they can take this power..

Above all, do not let them con you into the belief that there exists disembodied mystical forces like "the economy," "inflation," or "politics" that prevent them from doing what they take an oath to do.

Those 545 people, and they alone, are responsible.

They, and they alone, have the power.

They, and they alone, should be held accountable by the people who are their bosses.

Provided the voters have the gumption to manage their own employees.

We should vote all of them out of office and clean up their mess!


Charlie Reese is a former columnist of the Orlando Sentinel Newspaper.
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Dragontologist

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Re: 545
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2009, 10:34:57 PM »

......so, after reading this, I only have one question, and it's the same one I had at the beginning of the article: "What current political debacle?"  I'm pretty sure, based on the timing of the post, that you weren't talking about the NJ politician thing.  And I was further convinced by the fact that this article (which didn't originally include anything about Iraq) was printed March 7, 1985, and referred to the senior Bush administration.


I mean, sure, I'm against politicians in general, and so is everyone else, but they're a necessary part of our government.  We try to root out corruption where we can, we try to make life livable for those who can't do it on their own, and part of all that is paying taxes - especially in times of economic turmoil.  Overall, politicians are doing their jobs.  They argue, and have different ways of doing things, but I'm pretty convinced that none of them is cackling evilly into their piles of money while signing over oil rights under an orphanage for the blind to evil foreign terrorists.

Also - i kinda resent the Supreme Court being grouped in with the wolves in the Senate.  They can only take action to repeal laws, and even that is a really complected process.  I would never blame the Supreme Court itself for a law that was unfair, at least, not until I was actually able to present a case to them and lost.  Blame the lawmakers first and foremost.

And finally - if you don't think the current system works, suggest an alternative.  Anarchy?  Monarchs?  Secret Police-run military state?  Full true democracy, where we have to vote on every law individually as a country?  I don't know about you, but I doubt that the majority of the people would vote themselves anything but bread and circuses.  Politicians suck, but they're a necessary evil.  If you find one doing something particularly wrong, get your local paper to print up a story about whatever drug-and-sex-and-maybe-a-donkey thing he was doing.  Otherwise, just wait a bit and vote him out of office.  But don't try to convince me that ALL the bastards need to go at once, especially since you never know who the NEW bastard will be when he takes over.
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Mack Ravensline

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Re: 545
« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2009, 07:34:54 AM »

And finally - if you don't think the current system works, suggest an alternative.  Anarchy?  Monarchs?  Secret Police-run military state?  Full true democracy, where we have to vote on every law individually as a country?  I don't know about you, but I doubt that the majority of the people would vote themselves anything but bread and circuses.  Politicians suck, but they're a necessary evil.  If you find one doing something particularly wrong, get your local paper to print up a story about whatever drug-and-sex-and-maybe-a-donkey thing he was doing.  Otherwise, just wait a bit and vote him out of office.  But don't try to convince me that ALL the bastards need to go at once, especially since you never know who the NEW bastard will be when he takes over.
OK I have some alternatives. Term limits would go a long way towards fixing things. When someone leaves office they should not get benefits for life. Each politician should be held accountable for their actions within office. If they commit a crime, they should go to jail, not be let off by their friends and be able to keep their jobs. If they enact some legislation like health care reform, they should not exempt themselves from it. They should have to live within the countries means. The amount they take in should be equal to what they spend. Perhaps they should spend a little less even to pay down some of the massive debt. Attachments to bills should at least have something to do with the bill instead of just adding pork to a bill. Earmarks should be ended. If someone adds something like this to a bill it should be allowed to be removed through a line-item veto. Politicians should worry more about how to help the people they represent instead of their own self interests. Instead of adding beurocracy, try to find ways to give incentives to the private sector to make it happen. These are just a few things that would make the system far better.
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Bulova

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Re: 545
« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2009, 01:31:46 AM »

OK I have some alternatives. Term limits would go a long way towards fixing things.
"Term Limits" presume 1: that the longer a person is in office, the more likely s/he is to become corrupt or ineffective and 2: that the electorate is at a disadvantage when attempting to remove such a corrupt/inneffectual official. The problem with term limits is that it actually removes choice from the electorate by making an official (who, in a best-case scenario, would still be the best qualified to hold such an office) ineligible to continue to hold that office. The BEST term limit is the electorate deciding to end it, themselves, by voting someone else in.

When someone leaves office they should not get benefits for life.
You mean, like, a pension? Reasonable benefit for having served their community is not objectionable. However, I'd have to agree with you on extravagant benefit (you'd be surprised just how valuable "franking privilege," itself, is). And that includes extravagantly generous retirement benefits that are not available to the rest of us.

But then, you must feel differently about executive compensation by private corporations. Because they (including some of those who have driven their companies into the ground) have some of the most extravagant packages imaginable. And you object to the Federal Government exercising some say regarding Executive Compensation by corporations who choose to receive Economic Stimulus assistance.

Each politician should be held accountable for their actions within office. If they commit a crime, they should go to jail, not be let off by their friends and be able to keep their jobs.
Um, yeah. Democrats, Republicans and Independents alike.

If they enact some legislation like health care reform, they should not exempt themselves from it.
Back to the concept of compensation here. To be "devil's advocate": Don't you want the country's "best and brightest" to be motivated to serve? Then wouldn't you want appropriate compensation for those who choose to run, and serve? Don't corporate executives get better perks and benefits (such as health care) than the rank-and-file? Do you also think that Chief Executives and Boards of Directors should be subject to the same level of health care as that which they make available to the rest of THEIR employees?

They should have to live within the countries [Plural? You must mean "the country's," possessive] means. The amount they take in should be equal to what they spend. Perhaps they should spend a little less even to pay down some of the massive debt.
So advocate a "balanced budget" admendment. But then, how do you plan on responding to emergency? It's not like we can have another involved debate on "from where to divert funding" to deal with an emergency...and after-the-fact, the money has been spent. What do we do then?

Attachments to bills should at least have something to do with the bill instead of just adding pork to a bill. Earmarks should be ended.
Yes, but...

If someone adds something like this to a bill it should be allowed to be removed through a line-item veto.
I guess this bill is a budget?

Politicians should worry more about how to help the people they represent instead of their own self interests.
Remember that "but..." a paragraph or so ago? Let's actually talk about THIS point. Because what you have described is EXACTLY how "earmarks" come in to being.

Representatives (especially in the House of them) are from districts. Their constituency is the electorate of that district. Why, if I am representing my disctrict, should I vote in favor of a bill that benefits yours? I want to help the people I represent, don't I? So you, and a bunch of like-minded of your friends offer me a carrot...and add it to the bill. Now it benefits BOTH of our districts, and of course, I'm all for voting for it. Oh, but we need more than my vote, and yours and your friends...so we slide in more earmarks and get more votes. Eventually, we have a pork-laden piece of claptrap that we're all ready to vote for.

So when you propose a "solution" for a "problem" please be broad-thinking enough to consider what you're saying. And try and address the entirety of it. In this case, your solution is no solution at all.

Instead of adding beaurocracy, try to find ways to give incentives to the private sector to make it happen.
You mean like the "CARS" program? Where not just the "private sector" but the people, themselves, are offered an incentive to "upgrade" the car they are currently driving to one more fuel-efficient, and thus have long-term oil-usage benefit to themselves and the country in general? The House just had to approve an additional $2 BILLION in funding for this program...because it was so successful, the original one billion dollars was being exhausted.

These are just a few things that would make the system far better.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2009, 01:34:58 AM by Bulova »
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Mack Ravensline

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Re: 545
« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2009, 08:07:47 AM »

"Term Limits" presume 1: that the longer a person is in office, the more likely s/he is to become corrupt or ineffective and 2: that the electorate is at a disadvantage when attempting to remove such a corrupt/inneffectual official. The problem with term limits is that it actually removes choice from the electorate by making an official (who, in a best-case scenario, would still be the best qualified to hold such an office) ineligible to continue to hold that office. The BEST term limit is the electorate deciding to end it, themselves, by voting someone else in.
The problem with this is that most of the populous simply vote for a party and not a candidate. They do not even bother to look at issues, they simply vote for the party or the one who has spent the most money. The incumbant has a big advantage here. They are usually able to make deals while in that will secure their funds for reelection. If a Representative or a Senator were done in office after say 3 terms maximum, there would be far less reason for them to keep making deals with lobbyists. Those who have been in for long periods of time tend to become corrupt and at the least out of touch with their constituents because they live in Washington, not their home states.
You mean, like, a pension? Reasonable benefit for having served their community is not objectionable. However, I'd have to agree with you on extravagant benefit (you'd be surprised just how valuable "franking privilege," itself, is). And that includes extravagantly generous retirement benefits that are not available to the rest of us.
A small pension based on service is not objectionable. With term limits the politician would be able to go back out and work in the private sector and not have as much need for a pension. The problem is that if someone goes in and does a horrible job and is voted out in two years, they get their full pay for the rest of their life including all the health care and such. It is too much.
But then, you must feel differently about executive compensation by private corporations. Because they (including some of those who have driven their companies into the ground) have some of the most extravagant packages imaginable. And you object to the Federal Government exercising some say regarding Executive Compensation by corporations who choose to receive Economic Stimulus assistance.
No I do not feel differently, Their board of directors should boot them out and decide on benefits. If they bankrupt their company because of extravigant benefits to executives, they should fail and have to collapse. Asa far as those who have recieved money from the Government, I would not have bailed them out. I would have let the system handle it. The country would survive, and eventually get stronger.
Um, yeah. Democrats, Republicans and Independents alike.
No doubt, I am not exempting anyone from this.
Back to the concept of compensation here. To be "devil's advocate": Don't you want the country's "best and brightest" to be motivated to serve? Then wouldn't you want appropriate compensation for those who choose to run, and serve? Don't corporate executives get better perks and benefits (such as health care) than the rank-and-file? Do you also think that Chief Executives and Boards of Directors should be subject to the same level of health care as that which they make available to the rest of THEIR employees?
I want them to be motivated to serve because they genuinely want to serve, not be served. This is not like the private sector where their greed will cause them to fail and it will be OK. The government is the only buisiness that can't be allowed to fail. As it is now it is doing just that. No company would operate the way the government does and not fail.
So advocate a "balanced budget" admendment. But then, how do you plan on responding to emergency? It's not like we can have another involved debate on "from where to divert funding" to deal with an emergency...and after-the-fact, the money has been spent. What do we do then?
Yes I would love a balanced budget amendment. If there is an emergency, they could borrow from the next years budget. If they have to pay it off the next year, they might not have money for stupid earmarks that are unnecessary.
 They would have to tighten their belts the way we have to, and live within their means. They could even allocate an emergency fund for just such things. If it is not needed, they can roll it over into the next year. Heaven forbid we actually not spend it all.
Representatives (especially in the House of them) are from districts. Their constituency is the electorate of that district. Why, if I am representing my disctrict, should I vote in favor of a bill that benefits yours? I want to help the people I represent, don't I? So you, and a bunch of like-minded of your friends offer me a carrot...and add it to the bill. Now it benefits BOTH of our districts, and of course, I'm all for voting for it. Oh, but we need more than my vote, and yours and your friends...so we slide in more earmarks and get more votes. Eventually, we have a pork-laden piece of claptrap that we're all ready to vote for.
This is part of the problem. Money should be given to the states. The states should allocate it to districts. The reps can say to the state government that if it does not get sprent out to all of the districts fairly, they will lower what they get. It is not the Federal Government's job to get involved in issues like building gyms and Woodstock museums. That should be up to the states. This is how it was originally intended.
You mean like the "CARS" program? Where not just the "private sector" but the people, themselves, are offered an incentive to "upgrade" the car they are currently driving to one more fuel-efficient, and thus have long-term oil-usage benefit to themselves and the country in general? The House just had to approve an additional $2 BILLION in funding for this program...because it was so successful, the original one billion dollars was being exhausted.
You mean the same CARS program that was bankrupt after 4 days and had to be expanded with 3x the funding? The same program that is taking these so called "Clunkers" and instead of letting the dealers take in some cases fairly good cars and resell them to people that could benefit from used cars, have to have them destroyed so we can ship their remains to China? Or perhaps the same program that has a website that has a statement in the beginning that you have to agree to to get in? This same statement allows them to have full control over your computer from that time on? But we trust them with everything on our personal computers right? There are many problems with the CARS program. It will not be around for very long, regardless, so it is nothing more than a very small bandaid anyway. You can do better than this if you want to hold up a shining example. People are running out and buying new cars that even with $4500 they really can't afford because it is "on sale". We wll simply see them using their money on a car they could have waited on purchasing instead of buying something else. Government should not be involved in the car industry PERIOD.
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Mack Ravensline

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Re: 545
« Reply #5 on: August 02, 2009, 08:17:41 AM »

Part of the problem is that if you look at history, their were two depressions in the early part of the century. One was in the early 1920s. This depression was painful, but the government did little to stop it and after about a year of pain the country recovered and there was a boom period for a while after. The other was the great depression everyone knows about where Hoover and Roosevelt tried to "fix" things and made it far worse and stretched it out starting entitlement programs that plague us as they have expanded even today. They took steps including killing baby pigs and destroying crops to prop up prices so the farmers would benefit, while simultaniously hurting many others. They artificially drove up all costs and spent great sums much like they are doing now. None of it worked until we had a World War. They took away freedoms while increasing the power of the federal government. This continues today. Conversely when we had a really bad economy during the seventies, Carter did much the same and stagflation ruled. It was not until Ronald Reagan came along and lowered taxes during the 80s that we had another boom. Lets try the model that worked instead of hoping for another war huh?
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Bulova

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Re: 545
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2009, 07:59:45 AM »

Let me get this straight. Fiirst, you suggest trying...
...to find ways to give incentives to the private sector to make it happen.
...then you complain about a program that tries to do just that! (As an aside, remind me what the "it" is, that is supposed to happen as a result these incentives?)

You mean the same CARS program that was bankrupt after 4 days and had to be expanded with 3x the funding?
Yeah, that one. So now, you debunk one of the most successful federal incentive programs ever.The CARS program isn't "bankrupt" as you say, but the designated funding has been exhausted. So the House voted to expand the allocation BECAUSE of the success of this incentive program. Can we agree that "incentives" cost money?

The same program that is taking these so called "Clunkers" and instead of letting the dealers take in some cases fairly good cars and resell them to people that could benefit from used cars, have to have them destroyed so we can ship their remains to China?
How much do YOU know about the CARS program? Another benefit of this incentive program is that it reduces the US's dependence on foreign oil. The incentive is ONLY available to people who are trading qualifying less-fuel efficient vehicles for qualifying more-fuel efficient new ones. The old cars are being taken off the road in an effort not only to stimulate the economy of the auto industry, but to replace them with cars that get better gas mileage. Letting them be sold to "people that could benefit from used cars" defeats half the purpose of the program.

Or perhaps the same program that has a website that has a statement in the beginning that you have to agree to to get in? This same statement allows them to have full control over your computer from that time on? But we trust them with everything on our personal computers right?
This is a base lie. I visited the website for the CARS program, and nowhere does it say anything about agreeing to anything, or installing any software on or relinquishing control of my computer. From where did you get this incredible idea?

What IS there is an explanation of the requirements to qualify for the CARS program, and a place to "sign up" to be notified of any updates to the program, itself.

There are many problems with the CARS program. It will not be around for very long, regardless, so it is nothing more than a very small bandaid anyway. You can do better than this if you want to hold up a shining example.
Never said it was "shining." Only pointed it out as an example of something you, yourself suggested: A way to "give incentives to the private sector." Here, the incentive is being made available to the general public itself. Isn't it better to put money into the pockets of the taxpayer than to some "private sector" corporation?

People are running out and buying new cars that even with $4500 they really can't afford because it is "on sale". We will simply see them using their money on a car they could have waited on purchasing instead of buying something else. Government should not be involved in the car industry PERIOD.
What "people" are doing this? You are really judgmental about how a citizen decides to utilize an incentive program to his own benefit.

Don't Republicans/Conservatives believe that taxes should be lowered because people should be able to decide what to do with their own money? Here you CLEARLY put forth the opinion that they can't be trusted to use it wisely, anyway. Make up your mind! Or is it just RICH people that should have their taxes lowered, because we can't trust POOR people to use their money (or incentives) wisely?

And finally, how do you (representing Republicans/Conservatives) feel about Corporations being similarly incentivized by the Federal Government (such as tax breaks for lowering their carbon footprint, or cleaning up their local environment, that they, themselves polluted. Or making their processing, in general, less apt to pollute and poison the earth around their facilities.)?
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Mack Ravensline

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Re: 545
« Reply #7 on: August 06, 2009, 09:16:05 AM »

Let me get this straight. Fiirst, you suggest trying......then you complain about a program that tries to do just that! So now, you debunk one of the most successful federal incentive programs ever.The CARS program isn't "bankrupt" as you say, but the designated funding has been exhausted. So the House voted to expand the allocation BECAUSE of the success of this incentive program. Can we agree that "incentives" cost money?
This was an ill concieved way to try to get the car companies to show a short term profit so Pres. Obama can claim he fixed the auto industry. Tax breaks are far more efficient over much longer periods. Since when does the government get involved in giving rebates for car purchases. If they want to get people to get more efficient cars then give people a tax break if they drive a car that gets a specific fuel standard. It does not have to be a massive giveaway that will be over in such a short time. The major reason for something like this is to help bolster economic numbers temporarily so they can say the stimulous package had some effect.
It is far from the most successful incentive program. The tax cuts of the 80s had a much more longlasting and far reaching success than CARS will ever have.
How much do YOU know about the CARS program?
I know what it's purpose is supposed to be, but it takes away from the concept of buying an affordable car so they can do something that will be a complete drop in the bucket. see my above answer for a better way to incentivize this. It would be longer lasting.
This is a base lie. I visited the website for the CARS program, and nowhere does it say anything about agreeing to anything, or installing any software on or relinquishing control of my computer. From where did you get this incredible idea?
They acknowledged it and changed it because of the heat they were getting for it. seehttp://www.redcounty.com/danger-cars-website-takes-over-your-computer?taxonomy=3
Never said it was "shining." Only pointed it out as an example of something you, yourself suggested: A way to "give incentives to the private sector."
Earlier in this post you called it the greatest Incentive program ever, Which is it? I am not against incentive programs. This would be fine for a short term program if it were accompanied with longer term solutions and were not part of a massive spending bill we can not afford. Of all the aspects of the stimulous package, this is probably the least objectionable to me, however it is far from an efficient well run program, and it will cost us in the long run with little upside.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2009, 07:00:40 AM by Mack Ravensline »
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LucasJamison

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Re: 545
« Reply #8 on: August 06, 2009, 04:14:23 PM »

re: the cars.gov crazy

http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2009/08/cars-gov-terms-service

The Electronic Frontier Foundation on the issue.

Go read through the EULA for Windows sometime, eh?
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Bulova

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Re: 545 and Fox News fear-mongering
« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2009, 08:03:25 PM »

http://www.redcounty.com/danger-cars-website-takes-over-your-computer?taxonomy=3
The EFF opinion (as referred to by LucasJamison) addresses some of the over-the-wall exaggeration of Fox anchor Kimberly Guilfoyle who, along with Beck, conveniently forgot to note that the specific clause was presented when auto dealers (not the "general public") logged in to the DoT/CARS database in order to complete a CARS transaction. It also considered the computer system logged in to be "property of the Federal government...while the system is logged in" so even that license to access the end-user system (remember, this is still meant to be a dealer, not "John Q. Public") ended when the login session was terminated, even according to the (admittedly poorly-worded) EULA. (So Guilfoye's claim that "they can continue to track you...at any time" was a lie intended to generate fear and outrage in the viewer. It worked for me. I am outraged that a Fox anchor can go on television and spout such patently untrue drivel with impugnity. I fear for my countrymen who take what they see on television, particularly Fox News, as Gospel, and as a result, tilt against the WRONG windmills.)

Those Fox News fear-mongerers are so off-the-wall wacky in this internet viral video clip as to thoroughly lose credibility. Particularly when Glenn Beck spouts such garbage as "I know who these czars are... These are evil people. These are wicked, crazy frightening people." in reference to people currently in the Federal Government, particularly Obama administration appointees.

Pardon me if in the future I discount any reliability of the accuracy or veracity of Fox News citations such as this one.
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Bulova

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Re: 545
« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2009, 08:52:23 PM »

Earlier in this post you called it the greatest Incentive program ever, Which is it?
I really resent being misquoted.

WHERE DID I CALL CARS "the greatest Incentive program ever"? I said it was a successful program. So successful that the original funding for it had been exhausted, and Congress (at the time, just the House, but the Senate has followed suit since) passed a bill to add double the initial allocation. That's all *I* said.
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Mack Ravensline

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Re: 545
« Reply #11 on: August 12, 2009, 07:35:34 AM »

I really resent being misquoted.

WHERE DID I CALL CARS "the greatest Incentive program ever"? I said it was a successful program. So successful that the original funding for it had been exhausted, and Congress (at the time, just the House, but the Senate has followed suit since) passed a bill to add double the initial allocation. That's all *I* said.
Gee, giving money away is successful? Shocker. I would never have guessed that.
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Bulova

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Re: 545
« Reply #12 on: August 12, 2009, 08:26:16 AM »

Gee, giving money away is successful? Shocker. I would never have guessed that.
I see: when you agree with the structure and beneficiary of an incentive program, it's "finding ways to give incentives to the private sector." But when you disagree with it, it's "giving money away." *I* say it's giving money away in either case, and I'd rather give it to the middle class than to the rich.

You would rather "give away" tax-benefits to corporations, or to the rich, than tax-funded benefits to the actual consuming middle-class American. That same American who, when it comes to tax policy, supposedly "knows better what to do with his own money than the Federal Government." Why don't you just say straight out that you are in favor of taxing the middle class, and giving tax benefits to corporations and the rich, in the name of "incentives" to "make it happen." And you still haven't explained what this nebulous "it" is.
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President Bartlet: Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, concerned citizens can change the world. Do you know why?

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Mack Ravensline

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Re: 545 and Fox News fear-mongering
« Reply #13 on: August 12, 2009, 08:31:32 AM »

The EFF opinion (as referred to by LucasJamison) addresses some of the over-the-wall exaggeration of Fox anchor Kimberly Guilfoyle who, along with Beck, conveniently forgot to note that the specific clause was presented when auto dealers (not the "general public") logged in to the DoT/CARS database in order to complete a CARS transaction. It also considered the computer system logged in to be "property of the Federal government...while the system is logged in" so even that license to access the end-user system (remember, this is still meant to be a dealer, not "John Q. Public") ended when the login session was terminated, even according to the (admittedly poorly-worded) EULA. (So Guilfoye's claim that "they can continue to track you...at any time" was a lie....
So it is OK if the car dealer has their computers be taken over by the federal goverment? I did not see any distinction in the wording that originally existed that noted that it ended after the session. I read it this way “This application provides access to the DoT CARS system. When logged on to the CARS system, your computer is considered a Federal computer system and is the property of the U.S. Government. Any or all uses of this system and all files on this system may be intercepted, monitored, recorded, copied, audited, inspected, and disclosed to authorized CARS, Dot, and law enforcement personnel, as well as authorized officials of other agencies, both domestic and foreign.” This says all files can be copied and recorded and distributed. What happens if they find something they consider interesting? You don't consider this a violation of your rights? Remember they broke this story and did not have benefit of the spin that has come out since. They simply read it and saw something very wrong (which by removing it the Government has admitted to it). It is good to know there are still those who question this stuff. Since the government owns your computer, what to say that even though you navigate away from the website, they do not keep you logged into it if they find something interesting. By law, they would have every right to continue doing whatever with your computer, even after you are no longer on that site.
Those Fox News fear-mongerers are so off-the-wall wacky in this internet viral video clip as to thoroughly lose credibility. Particularly when Glenn Beck spouts such garbage as "I know who these czars are... These are evil people. These are wicked, crazy frightening people." in reference to people currently in the Federal Government, particularly Obama administration appointees.
So when Kieth Olbermann compares the Republican congress to those who used canes to beat other dissenters it is OK? At least Glenn Beck does not cover the coventions and get tingly feelings up his leg. I see you are falling in lock step with the Dems again and towing the party line that if anyone disagrees with this administration they are fear mongers and conspiracy nuts. At best this was poorly worded, it certainly seems that there is more here considering we are doing things "The Chicago way now". Some of the appointees have given ideas that teenagers are worth 14 Senior Citizens and other things that devalue life. I believe this was the context of his comments, however, you are mostly taking some bloggers word for what he says since I doubt you would ever listen to him to get proper context.
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Mack Ravensline

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Re: 545
« Reply #14 on: August 12, 2009, 08:40:51 AM »

I see: when you agree with the structure and beneficiary of an incentive program, it's "finding ways to give incentives to the private sector." But when you disagree with it, it's "giving money away." *I* say it's giving money away in either case, and I'd rather give it to the middle class than to the rich.

You would rather "give away" tax-benefits to corporations, or to the rich, than tax-funded benefits to the actual consuming middle-class American. That same American who, when it comes to tax policy, supposedly "knows better what to do with his own money than the Federal Government." Why don't you just say straight out that you are in favor of taxing the middle class, and giving tax benefits to corporations and the rich, in the name of "incentives" to "make it happen." And you still haven't explained what this nebulous "it" is.
When I talk about incentive programs I do speak of giving them to those who employ people in an effort to get them to do something for the consumer. As far as giving back to the populace, I would much rather see straight permanent Tax cuts. This would benefit everyone on a much larger scale than helping them buy a car. When I talk about incentive I am talking about giving tax breaks to those employers and producers that offer programs that benefit the economy in a specific way so as to create jobs, help the communities etc. Not just the Government giving money to those who buy cars. This is very short sighted and causes other problems down the line. Lets see what happens to the car industry after this giveaway goes away. Lets also see what happens to those who bought a car because it was such a "good deal" who then can't afford their car payments and default on their loans.
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