How to Cook a Frog – the Rt. 147 Toll Road
If you have a pot of boiling water and you throw a frog in, he is going to feel the hot water and jump out. So how do you cook a frog?
I'm glad you asked. I know you've been dying to know.
You put down a pot of warm water and put the frog in. He will be comfortable and will not try to jump out. Then you raise the temperature a little at a time until the water is boiling and he's cooked.
Why do you care? Because the Toll Road part of Route 147 doesn't affect you all that much.
When the powers-that-be created a toll road along Rt 147 south of I40 for just a little ways, you didn't think much about it. You would either get a pass, which is not too much, or you would pay the bill when it arrives in the mail.
You see, it works like this: If you have a pass, you stick it in your window. If you don't, they take your license plate and send you a bill, thereby sticking it to you. But it's not enough to be uncomfortable and besides, there are still side roads to be considered. In other words, the water is warm so you're happy.
It has recently been announced that “sections of I40” might also be turned into a toll road. Oh, well, that is a different kettle of frog! But it still might not affect you. You might drive south of the toll part, or north. And there are side roads that could be used – maybe. If you have ever tried to circumvent I40 on side roads, you know the frustration of small, country roads.
This is what people talk about when they use the term “slippery slope.” Once you set foot on a slippery slope, your next step could be the one that takes you all the way to the bottom. First it's a little-used part of one small road, just for a test. Then it's “sections of” another road, more traveled. Soon, every major road in the state is a toll road, with cameras tracking our comings and goings, billing us for the trip unless we have a pass – but taking our picture anyway.
There are two (at least) points to be considered. One is the concept that we are spied upon when we take the toll road, the picture of our car, our plate, perhaps our face, logging where we drive and when. The other is that we are charged yet another tax for driving on the road.
Now, think. Have you ever heard of a toll road that finally paid for itself and no longer needed to be a toll road? Have you ever heard of a tax that was put in place to pay for a project that was later dropped because the project was paid for? It is unlikely that once a tax is in place it is ever dropped; the money is simply diverted to other projects, or someone's pet project, or a slush fund for whatever comes up. That's how politicians pay for trips to the Bahamas with their secretaries.
Here is my point. Let us all be aware of what is happening around us, to be cognizant of the little steps in the grand scheme of things. One small toll road is not one small toll road, but a step in a longer plan to have toll roads wherever we go. Each toll is a tax on your freedom to travel. Each tax is one more until you are paying a dollar in tax for every dollar you earn, 100% tax.
When 30% goes to the IRS in April, 12% to the state, 7% for everything you buy, taxes on our cars, on our homes, on our phone, internet and television services, hidden taxes in our gas, food and other consumables and now on the road we travel – how long until you must pay every dollar you earn?
A little more each time is how you cook a frog.
Another goose-step towards One World.
Years ago, Europe said, "If we become one market with one money, we'll be stronger and will thrive." Result, Greece is bankrupt, so it Italy and Portugal. Spain is in trouble and France... well, France is full of French people and they aren't happy about anything. So now Europe - except Great Britain - is voting to do what hasn't worked before even harder in hopes that they can make something succeed that failed before. So by that reasoning, if I get hit by a bully and have a bruised and swollen face, the way to heal it is to have the bastard hit me again - harder. Oh, wait, no, I meant, if I get caught up in the kelp and am pulled down in the water, the way to make me better is to hold my head under water twice as long. Or, if your daughter says she's pregnant, the thing to do is to have her prom date over to the house, get him good and drunk and let him have another go at her.
I weep for the people who expect these people to lead them to prosperity.
Have you ever wanted to do something - really do something - important and good, something that will make a difference? Would you like to reduce the deficit, help to balance the budget and protect our freedoms? It's simple and easy, see this:
Congressman Ron Paul has re-introduced The Parental Consent Act , A bill which prohibits federal funds from being used to establish or implement any universal or mandatory mental health, psychiatric, or socioemotional screening program. (For the Full Article click here:http://bit.ly/oBJ9Iz)Please Sign the petition in support of the Parental Consent Act here: http://www.petitiononline.com/rppca/petition.html
Once upon a time people were farmers, bankers, businessmen, doctors or sea captains – and they also became senators, congressmen or President. They understood business, trade, working for a living and living on what you made. They went to the same doctors, bankers and shop keepers as the rest.
Today, we have lawyers who have gone to law school, learned how to argue whatever point they were issued to argue and grew up privileged. They come out of school and into politics, where they climb the ladder's rungs until they become congressman, senator or president. At that point, they have preferred and specialized health care, huge salaries and bonuses that they can vote to increase and a huge collection of perks that continue for life. Once a senator or congressman, or president, is voted out, the money, healthcare and perks continue in perpetuity.
I want that retirement package. Let me run for office, travel around, show up for a vote or two, laze off the rest of the time and get voted out of office for not doing squat. Then let me enjoy the ongoing perks until I finally kick on my 109th birthday.
Lately, 82% to 86% of the public, depending on who you listen to, is unhappy with the performance of the Congress (that is, Congress and Senate) and President. They just haven't been performing! Why? Because they are doing what they were trained to do, what their life and work experience has prepared them for: arguing the point they were told to argue.
It doesn't matter whether a law student believes what he is arguing or not – and it is called arguing – he must argue the point as if it was his life's calling. That is what we are seeing in the collection of talking heads who have been explaining what is going on with our economy. No matter who is doing the speaking, it is the same: an argument with a trained debater taking the side.
A nationwide disaster with global repercussions was narrowly avoided recently, along with a controversial lowering of the nation's credit rating. As soon as it was done, the Congress went on vacation. The President is at Camp David.
This is a game to these folks. They get their healthcare – different from what the rest of us get – regardless of their performance, they get paid regardless of the state of the budget, they get perks that never show up in the budget and cannot therefore be cut. Just like in college, when law students went into a debate, argued back and forth, then went out for beers and laughs, these lawyers, who have never worked a real job, never lived off of the money, never worried about their livelihood or that of their family, never worried if they will go broke by visiting a doctor, debated the pros and cons of the budget and then went on vacation.
Who's running the country?
The question is rhetorical. The only possible answer is: irresponsible law students.
What we need, in my humble but well-traveled opinion, is new candidates who have dirt under their nails and histories of running successful businesses, practices or farms. We need senators and congressmen who know what their constituents are going through and are willing and able to represent them responsibly. We need people in Congress who don't follow every tough week with a month-long vacation. And we need a President who knows the difference between good advice and bad advice. And in my personal opinion, giving millions of dollars to a handful of bankers who screwed up so they can screw up again, bigger, and get paid for it, is bad advice. (“Let's give it to AIG, they can't afford their next party.”)
I vote that we consider the education, experience and work history of the next people we vote into office and in the process vote out the Law Students. And I vote that we pass a law that when they are voted out of office or reach their term limits, they are done and are no longer paid – they have to go back to work like the rest of us and live on what they make.
It's just my opinion, but it ought to be yours.
Simply everyone is making those puns these days. But then, we can't all be financial experts; we can all be out-of-work comics.
Alan Greenspan said that we can pay off our nation's debts because the FED can simply print more money. This only proves once again that those who do not know history are doomed to relive it. The Continental Congress tried that back in 1778, running the presses night and day until the money was worthless. The popular phrase of the day was “not worth a Continental.”
Of course, that's one way to pay off a debt, just devalue the money until it takes a million dollars to have breakfast. Paying off the National Debt is easy when a Trillion Dollars is what you have in your pocket on any given afternoon.
I have a sneaking suspicion that someone is making a fortune off of the lowering of the U.S. Credit Rating. But then, I have a stable datum that whatever happens, someone is making a ton of money from it. I believe it is all controlled and manipulated. Does that make me paranoid or a realist?
One of these days, it will all come out. Documents will be discovered or someone will write a book, and the whole conspiracy, with names named, will be revealed to the public. Of course, only a handful of historians will know what it is referring to and all the players will be long dead. I will be vindicated, but I will be long dead as well. That is what “they” are counting on: that no one will notice until it's too late, and then no one will care. It's the not caring in the first place that is allowing it to happen.
With 87% of people polled disapproving of the job Congress and the President are doing, I would expect an overwhelming wave of loud dissent. Yet, there is only a whimper as we roll over and play dead, hoping ravenous debt will not devour us. It will devour us anyway, whimper nor no.
Perhaps the dissent will be heard in November of 2012. Perhaps 2013 will see a new batch of people running things, a batch that will care about this country and its people. If that doesn't happen, we won't just be in trouble, we will have been in trouble for a long time and will then be lost.
When asked what kind of government he had given the new country, Benjamin Franklin said, “A Republic; if you can keep it.” He knew that it was possible to lose the USA. We must know it.
It's time to leak the budget. The talking heads are pointing fingers, the media reports whatever they think will enrage the public and there is more condemnation of the Tea Party than ever before. (Gee! Do you think they might be doing something right?)
What's under discussion? Social Security, that which was paid for by working Americans since they first got a job, is said to be 66% of the budget. Military 40%, Medicare 28% and the Government is working for nothing, being only in it for the honor of serving the American people. Can that be true? No, it cannot! That would be 134% and we haven't even gone into the Department of Education!
There are at at least two major companies offering to finance a car “regardless of your credit.” When I worked in the credit repair industry, I learned that such things are a sign that there is a lot of bad credit out there. The new and used car industries are suffering because few people can pass a credit check anymore.
Unemployment figures are not an indicator because it does not show those who are not working in their industry, have gone past their benefits and are therefore no longer being counted, or those who have just given up and are doing something else – retired, left the country or changed their name to Gonzalez so they could qualify for government aid.
One politician said that every day people come into his office telling him to make cuts, but not their program. Yes, folks, there are programs – and they need to be cut.
Senators and Congressmen no longer in office still receive pay and medical benefits. Thousands of special interest projects funded by the US government are still operating, though they serve no useful purpose. The amount of money going to psychiatric and pharmaceutical research is staggering. Yet these programs are not even mentioned.
Foreign aide to countries that actively hate us – such as Afghanistan – are in the billions. We pay our enemies. What sane country does that?
How about foreign aide to people within our borders? I'm not talking about Americans, I'm talking about Mexicans living illegally in the US, and some living legally here, thanks to legal loopholes, and still receiving subsidies. Mexicans aren't the only foreigners we support; Armenians and other cultures get a huge cut. I have lived in Glendale and have seen Armenians, dripping in gold and leather, step out of a BMW, walk into a grocery and pay with food stamps.
And there are tax breaks. G.E., Exxon and the other power-producing companies are wracking up the highest profits in the history of the world and are not paying taxes on it. Wall Street bankers received trillions in bail-out money and are still crying the blues. AIG is still throwing parties and giving bonuses; Fannie Mae and Freddie Mack are doing just great, thank you very much. While those companies and executives are first in line (with the politicians) for the money, they are last in line to pay taxes. But I digress.
But all the press can talk about is cutting Medicare, Social Security and Military pay. Yet the US government is 30% larger than it was at the last presidential election. Is that the only way to go? To cut our throats to save on food?
I suggest we cut at the top, not the bottom. Instead of letting a couple of thousand teachers go, let the people who run the Department of Education go. Instead of not paying the military, don't pay Congress or the President, or the guys who are at the top at the Pentagon.
If that doesn't work, leak the budget, give it to us and we'll figure it out – but our decisions would be final. Where are my scissors?
How do you achieve World Peace? Anders Behring Breivik knows.
First you kill everyone. That's it, one step. Kill everyone and there is no one left to protect. The solution, while extreme, also cures overcrowding in schools, traffic gridlock and the common cold.
Anders Behring Breivik, a Norwegian, is the man accused of a killing spree and bomb attack in Norway, killing at least 93 people. He is responsible for a bomb attack in Oslo's government district and a shooting rampage at a youth summer camp of Norway's ruling Labour party. Breivik declared in what has been described as a rambling 1,500-page manifesto that he was on a self-appointed mission to save Europe from what he saw as the threats of Islam, immigration and multi-culturalism.
Clearly, Mr. Breivik is a troubled man. For one thing, if you want to save Europe from those threats, you attack those threats, not children at a summer camp. For another thing, he in fact has made it more difficult for anyone to oppose “the threats of Islam, immigration and multi-culturalism,” for anyone who does will be associated with him, likened to him and dismissed as insane or criminal.
That is the difficulty, you see, because if a crazy person does something horrible and wrong in order to “save the turtles” or some-such, then anyone who says they are out to “save the turtles” is suspect and may well be dismissed out-of-hand. In fact, if I were a representative of a major controversial movement, I would hire someone to go out and attack a totally disconnected venue, like MacArthur Park in Los Angeles, in the name of being against my movement. Thereafter, anyone who is against my movement would be associated with that crazed lunatic.
The time could come when anyone espousing “World Peace” would be instantly stoned in public as a terrorist and crazy person.
What Anders has done, in fact, has been to unify Norway with two causes – that of killing him and of mourning for the innocents he killed. It seems contradictory, but it's not. They are, we all are, sorry for those who died. I cannot say anything that would be enough to condemn such actions. On the other hand, given the opportunity, we would take his life in an instant and not shed a tear. The dichotomy is within us. If it is not within you, it is within me enough to cover your part.
But sitting here in America, far from the sadness, I can afford a longer view. Was Anders Behring Breivik put there by someone in order to skew the world view of Islam and those against it? Was his manifesto created by a committee of terrorists designing a mad killer for the sake of the tabloids? Is the the beginning of a series of nut-cases who will make taking a stand of any kind politically incorrect? And the most important question of all: Is killing everyone the answer to World Peace?
You got to have a deal,
If you don't have a deal,
Then how you gonna get a budget through?
For those of you who remember South Pacific, the musical, the song, Happy Talk, you get the above reference.
The Happy Talk was all over the Sunday News Shows. Experts pointing fingers and talking about Raising Taxes and Cutting Entitlements. And Boy! Are they happy!
Oh, they may look serious and concerned, but they are tickled pink. They talk of Putting the Burden on Middle Class Americans and Catastrophic Damage to the American Economy.
But there is only the one budget they are talking about (when a question gets answered at all). Let's talk about the other budget. Let's define our terms.
Entitlements are being defined as Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, the one we all paid for from the first day we worked. These are the programs we love, so cutting them sounds horrific.
There are other entitlements.
There is Federal money going to support undocumented (illegal) aliens in several states – California, North Carolina and Texas for three that are pretty obvious. There are signs in Spanish at the border telling those who cross to get to North Carolina for a free pass. The free pass includes money, food, housing, transportation and education – all gratis.
There is Federal Welfare, which has a huge infrastructure to do nothing but give free money to those who contribute nothing to the national production.
There are millions and billions given to United States Territories, which receive the same benefits of states but pay no taxes.
And millions and billions given to foreign countries, some of which hate us and actively work against us, which get us nothing.
There are millions going to Federal Programs that have been over for years or are useless, such as the psychiatric study to discover why men in prison are depressed. Millions into the pockets of a small group of psychiatrists to study men in prison. Hm!
Would you like to cut tax breaks? Cut the huge tax breaks to two of the most profitable sectors in American Business – the oil companies, which are logging the highest profit levels in history, the history of any company in the world, and Big Pharma, which gets billions in tax breaks and even government money for “development” of new drugs, and then charges big-time for the results.
The argument, if it comes up at all, for these is that they are not very big categories and would not save us much if they were cut.
Horse-biscuits! In the first place, I don't believe it, because every time I read a report about these tax-breaks, it's in the millions, if not billions. In the second place, if it is true, so what? A little here and a little there could save Social Security.
Suppose your family sat down at the table to discuss the family budget. OK, I know, that's a fantasy, but suppose it happened, just for argument's sake. Would you cut out food, clothing and shelter first thing? Or would you look good and hard for things that could be cut without endangering life and limb?
Suppose you wanted to go on a diet. Would you begin by depriving your lungs of air, so they would shrink in size? Would you cut out your liver, spleen and stomach? No, you would believe there must be a better way.
The Sunday morning talk shows have been all about the budget today, but only two things were discussed, raising taxes and cutting entitlements. However, no one mentioned eliminating tax breaks to the sections of society already making more money than Midas, and no one mentioned eliminating the entitlements that are really sucking this country dry, the money going to people who are contributing nothing to our country except to the crime rate.
If we want to get the country back on it's financial track, we have to get some people on the job who are willing to look at the whole picture. Let's hear about the other budget, the one nobody seems willing to adjust.
Are there hard choices to make? Yes, there are. But the smart decisions aren't politically hurtful to the other party, so neither side wants to make them. The bi-partisan decision would be to cut the fat, the unnecessary expenditures, the old, retired programs and the favorites that help no one but a few special interest groups with loud front men.
Perhaps it would help if the Sunday Morning Talk Shows got some guests who are willing to really talk about the subject rather than stoke the argument, point fingers and lay blame. It's time for a new panel, one that gives us more than “Happy Talk.”
Suppose I told you that when I was a boy in school, I went up to the class bully and gave him my lunch money. Then he would beat me up and walk off laughing. So the following day, I would volunteer my lunch money and he would beat me up. What if I told you that went on for the entire year, every year, until I graduated. Would you say I was insane or just disturbed?
The United States has given Pakistan 18 billion dollars in aid since 2002. They allowed Osama bin Laden and his band of terrorists to come and go and to live in their cities without hindrance. They have aided the terrorists and we give them money. Are we insane or just disturbed?
President Obama has sought three billion ($3,000,000,000) in aid for Pakistan in 2012. Here at home, schools are letting teachers go.
We are giving Afghanistan aid. They protested us going into their country to kill bin Laden, who they were protecting in a border city. We are spending $36 billion on military actions in Afghanistan. We gave them $10.4 Billion in aid between 2002 and 2008. They have requested $50 billion over the next five years. Yet here at home, we are fighting over raising the debt limit and borrowing more from China.
If I, as a private citizen, gave all my money to help people on the other side of the world while allowing my family to go hungry and without shelter, people would say, “Hey! Weren't you the kid who used to pay the bully to beat him up every day?”
Enough with the class bully! Let's stop supporting countries that hate us and actively attack us and bring that money home to fund Education, Medicare, Social Security and all the other struggling areas of our beleaguered country.
Let's stop being insane and perhaps we won't be so disturbed.
George Washington met Osama bin Laden at the Pearly Gates. He slapped him across the face and yelled, "How dare you try to destroy the nation I helped conceive!"
Patrick Henry approached, punched him in the nose and shouted, "You wanted to end our liberties but you failed!"
James Madison followed, kicked him in the groin and said, "This is why I allowed our government to provide for the common defense!"
Thomas Jefferson was next, beat bin Laden with a long cane and snarled "It was Evil men like you who inspired me to write the Declaration of Independence."
The beatings and thrashings continued as George Mason, James Monroe and 66 other early Americans unleashed their anger on the terrorist Leader.
As bin Laden lay bleeding and in pain, an Angel appeared. Osama wept and said, "This is not what you promised me."
The Angel replied, "I told you there would be 72 Virginians waiting for you in Heaven. What did you think I said?"