I watched President Obama’s news conference tonight and it was almost as if I had mapped it out on my WOAI show just a couple of hours earlier.  Feel free to check out the podcast at radio.woai.com keyword podcast.  It was almost like “I say it here and it comes out there.”      As predicted the president — now six full months later — squarely blamed what “he inherited” on the why we’re in the economic position we’re in.  And, he had the audacity to claim to have fixed things.  Here’s just some of it:      “I took office amid the worst recession in half a century.”  REALITY: Why don’t any of these network stooges ever call him out on this?  Why does this president and all democrats get to forget about Jimmy Carter — the founding father of the misery index?      “We were losing an average of 700,000 jobs per month…” REALITY: CNN Money, in a report from January 9, 2009 says, “ A sobering U.S. Labor Department jobs report Friday showed the economy lost 524,000 jobs in December and 1.9 million in the year’s final four months, after the credit crisis began in September.”  If I’m doing my math correctly, that’s a little more than 400,000 per month for the final four months.. just over half as many as our president cites.  Further, the article puts the total job loss for 2008 at 2.6 million.  Again, my remedial math tells me, that’s on average a little more than 200,000 per month for the year.      “…we’ve been able to pull our economy back from the brink.  We took steps to stabilize our financial institutions and our housing market and we passed the Recovery Act that has already saved jobs and created new ones.” REALITY:  The  economy is closer to the brink now than ever.  The budget deficit has ballooned to over a trillion dollars, the president cannot quantify these imaginary jobs he’s saved or created and if throwing hundreds of billions of dollars at financial, automotive and insurance institutions in order to control their every move is synonymous with “stabilizing” them, please don’t “stabilize” anything else!     “The Recovery Act will continue to save and create jobs over the next two years, just like it was designed to do.”  REALITY:  Again, the unemployment rate has gone from the 7s to almost 10 percent.  Do you think we’re stupid?  That means there are FEWER jobs now than there were six months ago.  I got that insight from my EIGHT YEAR OLD DAUGHTER!!      “The fact is, even before this crisis hit, we had an economy that was creating a good deal of wealth for those folks at the very top, but, not a lot of good-paying jobs for the rest of America.”  REALITY — HUH?  Mr. President, who is it that you think creates those good-paying jobs?  It’s the folks at the very top.  Why so much disdain for the employers and entrepreneurs?      “This is not just about the 47 million American who don’t have any health insurance at all…” REALITY:  I’ve talked about this a lot on my shows.  There are NOT 47 million Americans without health insurance.  Resource after resource readily available to the president show of the 47 (or nearly 50 million most democrats cite) upwards of 10 million are illegal aliens, as many as 14 million are eligible for the S-CHIP program but haven’t yet signed up, many more millions are between 18 and 30 years old and just don’t want it.  The source for the previous numbers is healthmadeeasy.com.  How many does that leave us — the true number of Americans without insurance?  Quick mathshows, depending on the actual number of those who simply choose not to have insurance, it could be 10-20 million American who want but, can afford insurance.  I’ll bet with a large number like that, we could outright purchase policies for them at a sizable discount and spend a ton less than the estimated 1.3 trillion the president’s plan would cost.      From here he just listed off a bunch of half-truths about keeping the plan you have if you like it.  Keeping the plan if you change jobs and the government is not going to get involved in the decision making for your health care.  Sorry, I misspoke.. they aren’t even half true.  Then he gave us this:      “if you don’t have health insurance or you’re a small business looking to cover your employees, you’ll be able to choose a quality affordable health plan through a health insurance exchange; a market place that promotes choice and competition.”  REALITY:    This is patently false.  The end result will be no choices, period.  How exactly can private industry, private insurance companies which must make a profit to survive take on the federal government which does not?  Further, how do the president and other liberal democrats feel about other competition when it comes to tax dollars.  Hmm.. when’s the last time you heard someone of his political ideology tout the praises of the school voucher program?  Case closed!      “…that’s partly why I inherited a 1.3 trillion dollar deficit.”  REALITY:  Again, I get that you’re in the bag for him, but White House Press Corps.. can’t you just act like you’re there doing a job?  Can’t you call him on that number, just once?  Dozens of sources, governmental and otherwise, put the deficit our president inherited at 400-480 billion dollars.  It’s now more like 1.3 trillion after the disastrous policies put in place since January 20th!      I have to stop.. seriously.  My head is really banging.  He just said that his health care plan will not increase the deficit.  Amazing.      In conclusion, president Obama said nothing new.  He was predictable in his blaming of the Bush administration for the “crisis” we’re in.  He was equally as predictable in blaming the republicans in the congress for standing in the way of this legislation.  Fact is, and this is as verifiable as all I’ve said here, if he’s so confident it’s the Rs that are stopping this from going through, why doesn’t he call for a vote in the House and Senate?  He’s got vast majorities in both houses AND a filibuster proof Senate to boot.  He won’t because the political party stopping his “reform” starts with a D.  But, what do I know?   comments?
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     I had this sent to me in an email today.. and have verified every word.  If you don’t believe what you’re reading, do the research yourself and you’ll see it’s all verifiable fact.       This list goes a long way to bolster what I’ve been saying since the campaigning was still going on.  Then senator and now president Barack Obama will say anything regardless of his belief in the statement or truth involved in an attempt to gain as much power and control over our daily lives as he can.  Here’s the list sent to me by Americans For Tax Reform.  

Ten Most Memorable Quotations from Obama’s First Six Months

From John Kartch on Monday, July 20, 2009 2:57 PM

To mark the occasion of the first six months of the Obama administration, Americans for Tax Reform has compiled ten memorable quotations by the President and his staff:

1. On Feb. 9, Obama claims the “stimulus” plan is free of pet projects and earmarks:
 
“What it does not contain, however, is a single pet project, not a single earmark, and it has been stripped of the projects members of both parties found most objectionable.”
 
2. Feb. 24, Obama makes his first address to a joint session of Congress and claims he doesn’t believe in “bigger government”:
 
“As soon as I took office, I asked this Congress to send me a recovery plan by President’s Day that would put people back to work and put money in their pockets, not because I believe in bigger government — I don’t — not because I’m not mindful of the massive debt we’ve inherited — I am.” 
 
3. Though his budget doubles the national debt in ten years, Obama claims the following on March 24:
 
“It’s with a budget that leads to broad economic growth by moving from an era of borrow-and-spend to one where we save and invest.”
 
4. On March 30, the day after he fired GM CEO Rick Wagoner, Obama makes the following claim:
 
Let me be clear: the United States government has no interest or intention of running GM.”
 
5. On April 1, the day Obama’s pledge-breaking 61 cents per pack increase in the federal excise tax on cigarettes went into effect, White House spokesman Reid H. Cherlin has the audacity to claim Obama’s central campaign pledge not to raise “any form” of taxes on those making less then $250,000 per year only applies to “income or payroll” taxes:
 
The president’s position throughout the campaign was that he would not raise income or payroll taxes on families making less than $250,000, and that’s a promise he has kept.”
 
6. On April 14, asked about the taxpayer tea parties attended by at least 600,000 people the following day, Obama spokesman Robert Gibbs said:
 
 I don’t know if the President is aware of the events.”
 
7. On April 15, when challenged as to how Obama squares his promise not to raise taxes on those making less than $250,000 per year while simultaneously raising taxes on cigarettes, Gibbs says:
 
“People make a decision to smoke.” 
 
8. Minutes later, during the same press conference, Gibbs states that Obama’s tax pledge has “no caveats”, directly contradicting his fellow spokesman Reid H. Cherlin (see #5 above)
 
“The statement didn’t come with caveats.”
 
9. On June 16, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Obama once again claims he has a limited government philosophy:
 
“I think the irony … is that I actually would like to see a relatively light touch when it comes to the government.”
 
10. On July 7, referring to his “stimulus”, Obama says:
 
“There’s nothing that we would have done differently.”
 
BONUS: On July 16, Vice-President Biden said the government is going bankrupt, and in order to prevent this from happening, the government should spend more money:
 
“We have to go spend money to keep from going bankrupt”
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     I never saw it coming.  Keep in mind, I’m a technology freak.  I build my own computers, get the latest gadgets, maintain web sites, I twitter, facebook, myspace, and maintain a blog.  I get it.  The new technology rocks!  With a couple of major exceptions.      I think HEB is great.  Wonderfully supportive in the community, good prices, good service, and my family spends hundreds a week there.  When it was time for my daughter to get a job, she figured HEB sounds good.  She got dressed nicely, did her hair perfectly, got her answers to interview questions straight and headed to our local store.  When she got there, she asked to fill out an application.  She was told, “you’ll have to do that on line.”  She called me.  I told her, “no, they must be mistaken.. ask someone else.”  She did and was told the same answer.       I’m not sure I understand how this is a benefit to a great business like HEB.  Yes, I get the economy isn’t great and we’re all looking for ways to save any way we can.  But, to take away the personal touch — the one on one in the application process — can hurt more than the savings helps.      Here’s how:           there’s no checking spelling (you get spellcheck on line) or signs of organization as you would get when someone fills out the old style paper application.          there’s no chance of having an interview right there and then           there’s no noticing the applicants eagerness to work and excel for you and your company           there’s no eye contact or noticing one’s personal hygiene.. to name just a few      So, why would a company do this?  I’m told it’s because on line — you can use certain programs to see if the applicant used the right keywords or phrases.  If they are not, the applicant never gets an interview.  So, if applicants find out what words they’re looking for, they’re a shoo-in.  If the applicant is just honest and straight-forward — he or she may never get to the next step.. leaving some with great potential untapped.      I would hope any business utilizing this practice would reconsider and get back to how many who work there now and helped to build the company were hired ; the old fashioned way.  Have people fill out applications, look ’em in the eye, and decide whether they could help take you to the next plateau.   thoughts?
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     I’ll never forget junior year.  My friend Thad and I somehow were able to get our hands on beepers.  There was also a payphone at the school and one would leave class, go to that phone and beep the other.  Then vice-versa.  We were very important.  The beeper would go off and we’d get looks from the class and the teacher, we’d shut it off, announce that it was important and we’d leave to go tend to the important business at hand.  Yes, we were the 1983 version of the modern-day cell phone distraction.       Fast-forward to today.  Beepers are long-gone and cell phones dominate our lives.  They’re all but standard issue from the age of 8 these days.  They keep us connected with our loved ones, jobs, friends, pizza places, etc.  They also distract meetings, movies, meals and CLASSROOMS.  In Texas, ISDs can levy fines on students who are using their phones on campus.  I agree — to a point.       Recently it was revealed that the not-too-strapped-for-cash Klein Independent School District has been charging $15.oo per instance for students to get their cell phones back after being confiscated.  You’re thinking, “good, that’ll teach the students to stop doing that.”  Not so fast.  Take a guess at how much the ISD has collected from those fees over the past two years.  Go on — Guess!  Okay, I’ll tell you: $100,948!  (don’t ask me how educators came up with that number which clearly is NOT divisible by 15.00)  That’s highway robbery.      Now, the program is being touted as a new revenue stream for ISDs.  Huh?  I thought the idea was to stop the kids from being distracted or distracting due to cell phones.  Now, it sounds like the idea is to add to the district’s income.  Therein lies the rub.  Does the ISD really want our kids to stop bringing and using cell phones?  Or, will it, in no time flat, start planning on said income and include it in the budget.  So, where’s the bigger benefit?  Fewer distracted students.. and interruptions.. or more cash for the schools?  I don’t like the answer I’m coming up with.      Here’s what I propose we do throughout the state: charge $5.00 for the first violation.. on the second one, call mom and dad.  Shoot, if you really want to stop the usage of cell phones in classrooms, call mom and dad the FIRST time.  That would have worked for me.       The way it stands, the practice is reminiscent of speeding fines, or red light camera fines.  In each case, some entity profits by people continuing to behave contrary to the rules.  I could argue strongly that municipalities for speeding and the private  company for redlight cameras truly don’t want drivers to stop running red lights and speeding.  It would mean a loss of too much money.  I fear the same applies to ISDs like Klein.    Thoughts?
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     So much is being said about Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor.  There’s actually a group of Latino law students at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio that’s holding a “watch party” for the confirmation hearings going on in the Senate for Sotomayor.  The sound bytes I’ve heard from some students there go something like this: “It’s a moment of pride for our community” “She’s so well-qualified.  It’s a very exciting time.  History is being made.”      Can I understand why they feel that way?  Sure!  Someone who has a similar background is making it to the pinnacle of the line of work she’s chosen.  For the first time, there will be a Latino/Hispanic on the Supreme Court.  Of course, what you don’t hear much about is how we probably would have had someone of that heritage on the court before now, had politics and ideology not stood in the way.      Then-president George W. Bush nominated a very well-qualified man to the Washington, D.C. Circuit Court.  You know, the George W. Bush who appointed the first American of African decent to the post of Secretary of State with Gen. Colin Powell.  Yes, the same G.W. Bush who appointed the first American of Latino/Hispanic decent to the office of the Attorney General of the United States with Alberto Gonzales.  Indeed, the same G.W. Bush who appointed the first female of African American decent to the post of Secretary of State with Condoleezza Rice.  Remember him and all of them?  Remember how the liberals responded then?  There were very little kudos for the president.  Instead, there was political infighting.  This is NOT about diversity this is about ideology.      Back to Estrada; he was nominated by then-president Bush and seemed to be a great choice.  He came highly praised and rated by judicial experts and with his Latino family line and amazing, intriguing story of achieving the American dream through amazing adversity (sound familiar?) he was a shoo-in for whom both sides of the aisle could vote.  He came to America at 17 speaking very little English with his mother from Honduras.  This is NOT about diversity this is about ideology.      We could be a proud country that we’ve confirmed a Latino to a very high court.. more importantly, we would be confirming a very good jurist.  The thought process at the time was that Estrada, after serving a period of time on the Circuit Court bench, would be an easy choice for nomination to the Supreme Court of the United States.  Yes, he would have been the first such justice of Latino heritage.  He never got that chance.  Instead of showing pride for morediversity from the president, democrats in the Senate (who were in the minority) filibustered the nomination.  They did NOT allow for a vote on this very well-qualified legal nomination.  “Why?” you might ask?  This quote from an email written to Senator Dick Durbin answers that question: “They also identified Miguel Estrada (D.C. Circuit) as especially dangerous, because he has a minimal paper trail, he is Latino, and the White House seems to be grooming him for a Supreme Court nomination.  They want to hold Estrada off as long as possible.”      This is NOT about diversity this is about ideology.  This email can be seen on Karl Rove’s web site.  This is obviously an email to assist in planning how to stop the nomination of this very wise, experienced Latino nominee.  And stop him they did.       Had the senators not filibustered the nomination of Estrada, one can make the logical assumption that he would have been the one nominated to the highest court instead of Roberts, or Alito.  It’s a good assumption that, as he did with Powell and Rice, G.W. Bush would have again made a great choice — and one of which all Americans could have been proud.  He was not allowed to do that.. because, you guessed it; This is NOT about diversity this is about ideology.      By the way, president Obama — then junior senator from Illinois — helped block judicial nominees of then-president Bush of all races and genders and voted against both Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito.  This is NOT about diversity this is about ideology.
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Okay.. so, I’ve waited it out long enough.. and now, I’m giving in.  I’ll update this blog M-F as time permits and I’d love to get your input on the issues and topics affecting us all.  It doesn’t matter if your comments are good or bad or somewhere inbetween… all of your thoughts are welcome.  Please keep it clean and remember I may use some of what you say on my shows.   all my best, -Joe
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