Sunday, October 10, 2010

The Day the Cat Died

It was a romantic day from the start. I know that contradicts the title of the post, but you'll soon understand. As I was saying this particular day was one where my wife and I just seemed to be connecting on all levels. Of course we usually get along. We aren't the type of couple to have disagreements or fight. In fact most couples would say that after five years of marriage we are still sickly sweet to one another. I like it that way. This day though was one that had our relationship firing on all cylinders.

We awoke together after sleeping in just a bit, cuddled a while and turned on the radio as we started the day. While cleaning is much of a romantic thing to do we made the best of it. We laughed joked and snapped each other with towels, just the general flirtatous behavior you should expect from a couple.

We both had a commitment for the early afternoon so we bid farewell with a kiss and left to accomplish our tasks. I had been contemplating what a great morning it had been, and on my way home decided to call my wife and ask her on a date. By the time I arrived home she was ready to go. The work I'd been doing involved tearing up a floor so I was in definete need of a shower. My wife waited patiently as I hurriedly finished a shower and changed into fresh clothes.

Soon we were on the road to the restaurant of her choosing. She chose a sports bar. While it was far from a romantic setting I knew she did it to allow me to see some of the sporting events I was missing. My wife really does love me. After a wonderful dinner we took in a movie. It wasn't good, but it mattered not. We spent the evening together.

By the time we arrived home we were certainly feeling romantic after this day spent together. I lit a candle, shut the bedroom door and embraced my wife in my arms. It wasn't long before I heard our cat push open the door. Sure this was an intrusion into our private time, but I was not going to be detered.

"What is that smell" my wife said with a hint of disgust in her voice. I could smell it too. Yes it was bad. It was then that we looked over and nearly in unison cried out in horror as to what we were seeing. The cat's tail was on FIRE! She hadn't yet appeared to notice, and I believe it was our screams that sent the flaming ball of fire scurrying through the house.

Needless to say our moment of intimacy was over. We spent the next few moments chasing down the cat whose tail was now charred.

No the cat didn't really die, either by flame or my frustrated hands.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Time To Make A Choice

There is one thing that "almost" everyone I talk to can agree upon. Whether republican or democrat it seems we have all come to the conclusion that we can't continue to run budget deficits forever.

If you read this and the first thing you want to do is begin blaming one party or the other, don't bother. WE are all to blame.

We can not continue the path we are on. We must either decide to make very deep cuts to social service programs, or raise taxes significantly on EVERYONE. Not just the very rich. Just taxing the rich more wouldn't be enough.

Every dollar taken in in taxes in a year is consumed to pay for Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security alone. That leaves every other program and service including DOT, DOD, Treasury, and countless other programs to be funded by loans.

With recent reports of 45 percent of households having at least one member receiving aid from government and nearly half of all people paying zero dollars in taxes, I'm afraid there is no cutting of the programs. At least not without riots in the streets.

All this leaves us in a position where taxes will need to go up dramatically in order to pay our every expanding debts. This could include a VAT tax on top of income taxes, high taxes on corporations (which would likely be very detrimental to business), higher personal income taxes across the board or maybe even all of the above.

How would you solve the problem. Cut programs, raise taxes or a combination of the two.

Just a hint for those of you who would blame Iraq/Afghanistan war operations for the deficit, fine, but realize that ALL the money spent on all the war operations in the last 9 years is still 300 billion less than the budget deficit this year alone. So, you can say we need to stop the wars, and that would be a good start. However, one year's worth of war costs is less than 9 percent of the deficit. We've got a long way to go. It's time to make a choice.

A Liberal Point of View

I have been contemplating for a while whether or not to continue this blog. It isn't that I don't enjoy writing it. I certainly have. I'm just not sure that it is productive. I'm fairly certain the words I write aren't changing any ones opinion regarding the topics covered. Anyway onto the purpose for this post.

I read the following phrase on a blog I follow:

"I feel that people should be able to do what they want UNLESS it is totally distasteful, insensitive or just plain stupid."

This is not a person who lacks the mental capacity to have an intelligent conversation. To the contrary I have found her posts to be well thought and well written, even if I rarely agree.

This quote on the the other hand shows a rather telling lack of foresight. The problems with this line of thought are obvious, and I don't feel the need to explain them. If I do have to explain you won't understand anyway.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Assault on Capitalism

To say that there is an assault on capitalism in this country is an understatement. From the bailouts of wall street and motor companies to the calls for the Venezuela style take over of BP the assault is obvious. I have only two quick thoughts I'd like to share.

1. We don't currently have a capitalist system. The government is intertwined in both banking the motor companies, oil, just about every sector of the economy we see struggling is already highly regulated by our government. The arguments that it was capitalism that led to the economic troubles we see is a fallacy.

2. (And this was the real point of this post) Nearly every day I hear people whining and complaining about how much money the gas stations make on a gallon of gas. I hear people complaining about the cost of health care, insurance... etc.

The same question always remains. If you really believe they have such a high profit margin, then why haven't you opened your own business. You could undercut their price and make money hand over fist. You don't even have to become a doctor. Just open a clinic, hire some docs, charge a lower rate and watch the people flock in your doors. They will be glad you are charging less, and you can swim in all your profits like scrooge mcduck. But you don't. I wonder why. Either you are not willing to take the risk, or you don't really believe what you are claiming.

There is also another option. It is possible that you don't believe there should be a profit allowed. That clinics and doctors should be run as non-profits. In which case you are a hypocrite.

I think your industry should be non-profit.

Thursday, April 29, 2010


.... and in other news the United Nations once again declared themselves irrelevant.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Arizona Law - Constitutional?

Before we get into this immigration law I'd like to take a moment and give my personal thoughts on immigration. My solution to the Hispanic illegal alien problem is very simple. Armed troops with authority to shoot anyone crossing the border at any place other than an authorized check station. We do this in other police actions to control movement half way around the world. Surely our own borders should be no less a priority. This would be very effective. You only have to step over a few dead bodies before you reconsider your method of entering this country.

Second, we need to make it MUCH easier for immigrants to enter this country to work as productive members of society. I am not against immigration. It is what makes this country strong. I am against illegal aliens crossing our border damaging our social services and creating a drain on our nation.

Now to the Arizona law.

I have two issues with this law that I believe violate your constitutional rights.

1. The law allows police officers to stop and question anyone they "have reason to believe" may be in the country illegally. What could this possibly mean in Arizona other than a hostile environment for anyone of Hispanic dissent. It is very plausible that a single individual driving to work could be stopped multiple times for simple having brown skin. This is the Hispanic version of "driving while black". This is not acceptable.

2. This law requires all individuals to carry on their person documentation showing their immigration status. This could mean a green card for an immigrant, or a social security card or birth certificate for a citizen. The problem with this is that it places the burden of proof on the accused. Rather than the principle accepted by the Supreme Court since the very inception of our country as a the standard of guilt.

This second point brings to mind the gestapo asking you for your papers. You have a right in this country under the 4th amendment to a reasonable degree of privacy and security in your person. In my opinion this law is a clear violation.

Some have criticized my opinion as hypocritical as I want to shoot people crossing the boarder with out due process. Depriving them of their life without a trial constituting a violation of their 5th amendment. To these people I retort that those crossing the border are not citizens of the United States, and therefore not protected by the bill of rights. However I will concede that it may be best to claim a few hundred feet this side of the border as military base property, thereby making a trespass an invasion.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Selling My Home in the New Government Era

About a month and a half ago my wife and I listed our home with a real estate agent. We have been renting for the last few years as we waited for the market to improve. In the mean time we had renters in our home to assist us pay the mortgage. We signed the papers with our realtor on a Friday morning. Friday afternoon she placed the sign in our yard. The house was shown Saturday morning, and that afternoon we had an offer in front of us. Wow, we were happy. While it wasn't quite full asking price, it was close.

{cue the "Imperial March" music}

Enter the government. The buyer of our home is doing so through a government guaranteed loan, so of course there will be an inspection to ensure the house meets minimum requirements. The inspector asked that we:

Replace a few shingles - No problem. I have extras.
Repair flashing around Chimney - Not a big deal.
Update outlets - Sigh. Okay.
Repair cracked window in basement. Fine.

Enter bank appraiser who asks for a vapor barrier under the addition. (This is a 10'x8' room. - Why do they care. It was fine when we bought it 5 years ago.

Enter City inspector who demands we:

Replace all smoke detectors. - Why? They still work! The city just wants new ones.
Replace 60amp electrical box with 120amp. - At this point I'm pulling my hair out. The city is requiring more than even the federal government. Oh by the way, if you don't make all repairs they will not allow the transfer of the deed. UNDER WHAT AUTHORITY?

Of course you have to use their "approved" electricians. (There are only two.) You can't do the work on your own. How can this be constitutional?

It is no wonder the housing market is hurting. The government forces so many regulations that it eats up all your equity, if you are lucky enough to have some.