Bush Administration Deficits Secondary to Democrats not Paying Taxes

That headline might be a stretch …

Then again, it might not …

Maybe Barack Obama should nominate every Democrat for some position so their tax returns have to be audited. Then we might be able to reduce the National Debt significantly.

Geithner, Daschle, now Sibelius …

Is anyone keeping up with the total of what these people have wound up owing? And, why aren’t they having to pay penalties as well as interest … and interest on penalties … like everyone else?


Another “Mark to Market” Debate is Approaching

In an article published on CNBC’s website, Death To Mark-To-Market – Tomorrows Playbook – CNBC.com, it was pointed out that on April 2, 2009 regulators will again reconsider the official position on the “Mark-to-market” rule that was initiated in November of 2007.

This has become one of the most controversial aspects of the current financial crisis with support for maintaining the rule coming from such stalwarts as Tim Geithner, Ben Bernanke and Paul Volcker, all prominent players in the Obama administration.

Opponents of the “mark to market rule” aren’t without considerable financial expertise also.

Former FDIC Chair William Isaac placed much of the blame for the subprime mortgage crisis on the Securities and Exchange Commission and its fair-value accounting rules, especially the requirement for banks to “mark-to-market” their assets, particularly mortgage-backed securities.[6] Whether or not this is true has been the subject of ongoing debate. [7][8]

As mentioned in a previous article, Why Not Suspend “Mark to Market”? other noted experts such as Steve Forbes have also opposed the rule.

The issue was first addressed in this blog in the articles, Bail out, Investment or Moot Point? and Was John McCain Right About Wanting to Fire SEC Chairman Cox? « Earl says ….

Charleston Democrats Amass Whopping 125 People to Protest Education Issues

According to the Charleston Post & Courier in two lead articles, Tuition tax credit foes hold rally to air views and Stimulus rally supporters gather at Brittlebank Park, an estimated total of 125 people attended both rallies … in total … 50 at one and 75 at the other.

Within the comments a few mentioned that they might have attended the protests and rallies if they had been held at a more convenient time of day rather than their near midday times. The reason for the particular time of each event was stated to be able to make the evening news.

I think making the news with next to no attendance is slightly counterproductive, but what would you expect from a group of people rallying and protesting about educational issues. Duhhh!!!

The issues at hand are South Carolina governor Mark Sanford steadfast refusal to take $700 million in stimulus money earmarked for education and state senator Robert Ford’s introduction of  state school voucher bill, each written about in other articles,  SC Governor, Mark Sanford, Being Hounded Over Stimulus Money and Local Paper Recruits Home-based Political Hack to Attack Black School Voucher Advocate.

Local Paper Recruits Home-based Political Hack to Attack Black School Voucher Advocate

What could be more dangerous to South Carolina Democratic power mongers than a majority population in the state that can actually read, write, and think for themselves?

The question posed above may get to the real root of the problem. If children aren’t subjected to the daily propaganda and brainwashing that they are bombarded with on a daily basis for 12 years in the public school system, what will that do for the naked power grab that the Democratic Party is now involved in and what would it mean for its future?

In an article, “Ford pushes school tax credits” (3/25/2009),the local Charleston, SC newspaper, The Post and Courier, apparently found it prudent to push their own political agenda by recruiting a local Democratic Party propagandist, Phil Noble, Jr., to attack a black Charleston County state senator, Robert Ford, for changing his position to one of support for a state school voucher system and to ensure that the proper amount of caustic party line cynicism was injected into their “news” article. In an attempt to water down his national renown as a propagandist and political hack, Phil Noble was described as a Charleston businessman and president of the S.C. New Democrats”.

Robert Ford is a black state senator from Charleston County’s district 42 who has served his district in that capacity since 1993 and previously served on Charleston City and County Councils beginning in 1974 until his election to the state Senate.

Mr. Noble, in typical demagogic style, doing his best to incite both white and black sentiments was quoted as stating the following regarding Senator Ford’s proposed school voucher bill,

“It will lead to the re-segregation of our schools and lead to worse education, not better,” Noble said. “Howard Rich is nothing but a carpetbagger who is trying to use our school children as lab rats in his radical social experiment.”

By invoking both “carpetbaggers” and “re-segregation”, Mr. Noble’s covered the field of inflammatory prejudices both black and white in one sentence, an extraordinary accomplishment. Bravo, Phil!! Simply amazing!!

Mr. Noble is, without a doubt, one of the most virulent antagonists of a school voucher system. He has gone so far as to publish and support a website, Stop Howard Rich where he “exposes” out of state funds for (Republican) politicians in South Carolina on both state and local levels.

So, what’s new????

What not do the same expose on Democratic candidates … say for example, James Clyburn.

Now … let’s see.

This gets really interesting. According to OpenSecrets.org – Center for Responsive Politics , in his last campaign, Mr. Clyburn received about 70% of his 2008 campaign contributions from PAC’s or political action committees, not exactly grass roots support, with over $200,000 coming from lawyers and law firms. His largest single contributor was Blackstone Group ( $29,900)which is a Wall Street  alternative asset management and financial services company that specializes in private equity, real estate and marketable alternative investment strategies as well as mergers and acquisitions (M&A), restructuring and fund placement advisory services. This isn’t exactly what I would consider home grown South Carolina support, but it is consistent with the fact that Mr. Clyburn’s second largest contributing industrial sector is Securities and Investment ($180,501) followed by Pharmaceuticals/Health Products ($151,228).In fact, according to OpenSecrets.org, during the last election cycle Mr. Clyburn received 74% of his funding from out of state sources which has left him with a war chest totaling more than $1,000,000 in unused funds.In the last two election cycles the majority of Mr. Clyburn’s campaign financing has come from out of state sources.

So, what’s Mr. Noble’s beef … other than practicing a little duplicity? Mr. Noble specializes in getting funding … from any source … for his clients. Mr. Noble’s “business” is a political consulting firm which specializes in answering the question, “Where’s the money?”, and securing it for his clients who are ideologically of his same ilk. As one of his numerous websites proclaims, Phil Noble founded PoliticsOnline, the premier international company providing fundraising and Internet tools for politics … Democratic Party politics. Mr. Noble does own a local business, Phil Noble + Associates, Inc.

As a self proclaimed “New Democrat”, he’s really an old school Democratic Party hack in a fancy new set of clothes, touting that at the age of 9 he “campaigned” for John Kennedy, who’s expertise seems to be blowing smoke screens and slinging mud in a single direction … against anyone opposing his proclaimed “progressive” views.

Robert Ford, by evolving to a position of supporting a school voucher system, has clearly put himself into Mr. Noble’s sights.

While accusing Howard Rich of being a “a carpetbagger who is trying to use our school children as lab rats in his radical social experiment”, he condescendingly refers to Robert Ford as good and honorable man but is on the wrong side of the school choice issue, while simultaneously hammering him for taking money from Howard Rich who is an ardent supporter of school voucher systems. Frankly, I’m surprised Mr. Noble didn’t just go ahead and refer to Mr. Ford as an “Uncle Tom”(“a good and honorable “black” man who is on the wrong side of the issue”), a favorite slanderous moniker for blacks who break with the hardline ideology, since he did in all but name only.

Frankly, I’ve found a new admiration for Robert Ford who has taken the time to investigate how the school choice works in other states. Unlike Mr. Noble and people like him, Mr. Ford isn’t blinded by senseless ideology which precludes thinking outside of a radical and inflexible ideological box.

It’s ironic that Mr. Nobles would refer to any student as a “lab rat” but it might be an appropriate analogy for what they’ve been for the past 40 or so years being forced to stay in a failed public school system.

Thanks, Mr. Noble. Maybe you came up with the right term but just applied it to the wrong group. I think the flourishing of private and parochial schools in South Carolina is anything but a failed experiment and maybe it’s time for those you claim to be representative of actually have a chance to make a choice … if you don’t fear the consequences. A failed public school system can’t get any lower than that and as Mr. Ford puts it,

“If the school’s not doing its job, then we’re supposed to take the money and give it to little Johnny’s mama to go to any school that she wants to send him to, (to) make sure little Johnny grows up to be one of y’all one day.”

Give ’em hell, Robert.

Maybe Mr. Ford has finally realized this senseless fanatical support for public school systems is less about education, or even money, than it is about ideological control and brainwashing … and school vouchers threaten the core of the control and brainwashing process … the public school system … the ultimate “social experiment” as Mr. Noble puts it.

Update(3/29/2009): Apparently, I spoke too soon. Within the “comments” of a follow up article on 3/27/2009, School choice bill takes fire, one of the commentors made the following statement:

Posted by “redreader” on March 27, 2009 at 1:02 p.m.

I’ve noticed that neither the P&C reporter nor any of the commentators have mentioned the influence of New Yorker Howard Rich and his money (and his friends’ cash) that is funneled to politicians who support vouchers, tax credits, whatever you want to call it. Ford has been on the receiving end of a full-court press from these people and their checks. Look it up on the SC.gov website for donations to him. You’ll find a certain address repeatedly listed.

Robert Ford has only ever supported positions that have campaign donations behind them and he’s either too vain or stupid (or both) to realize he’s been made into an Uncle Tom (my emphasis).

Maybe “redreader” is Mr. Phil “incognito” finally venting his true feelings and frustration. I knew I would see this reference to “Uncle Tom” at some point.

SC Governor, Mark Sanford, Being Hounded Over Stimulus Money

Like a bunch of rabid dogs fighting over a tainted bone, numerous political factions including both Democrats and Republicans as well as a horde of special interest groups have been attacking South Carolina’s governor over his fiscal conservatism exemplified by his desire to use a portion of the stimulus money to pay down part of South Carolina’s state debt.

All of his detractors claim to represent the people of South Carolina while many of these same people purported to be represented by these various factions through various blogs on newspaper sites stand staunchly behind the governor.

Charleston’s Democratic mayor, Joe Riley, has issued another attack on Sanford today, (Riley issues new attack on Sanford). Apparently, Mayor Riley doesn’t bother to read the comment sections indicating there are more than a few people who wish he would simply shut up.

Congressman James E. Clyburn (D-SC) of South Carolina’s 6th Congressional District has virtually accused the governor of being racist for trying to either refuse the money or apply it to debt, an interesting stance for a person who’s political  base has been demographically eroding in his own district in spite of efforts to maintain that base through some very creative gerrymandering. Clyburn should concentrate his efforts on more effectively hiding projects which benefit his relatives rather than attacking the governor. “Ignorance of” is his favorite line for what has appeared to be an affinity for getting funding for projects where his close relatives are employed.

Most people, as in individuals, tend to tighten their belts and pay off their credit cards when times get tough.

Governor Sanford seems to think that responsible government should act like responsible individuals. Paying down debt during economic hard times should make the state more fiscally sound during good times, especially when you can use money that doesn’t even exist to do it.

One of the arguments I keep hearing against him from individuals is that it’s taxpayer’s money that ought to be returned to the taxpayers. The fallacy of that argument is that it’s money that hasn’t even been printed yet or borrowed from China … yet. And, very little of it will actually go to taxpayers anyway. So, I’m wondering exactly what taxpayers are actually complaining.

I’ve been reading a lot of accusations that Governor Sanford is only posturing to run for the presidency in 2012. It really amazes me how people who have no principles are driven completely crazy by a person who does. Governor Sanford is simply beyond the comprehension of his detractors, both in his Republican party and in the Democratic party.

Do I admire the man?


I admire any principled person who stands by his principles.

In these times, it’s an extremely rare quality.

Steve Liesman’s Fallacious Argument that Union Health Benefits don’t Compare to Bondholder Interest

In a disagreement just minutes ago on CNBC, commentator Steve Liesman argued that union members’ health benefits at General Motors shouldnt be compared to bond holders interest payments.

I vehemently disagree.

What’s the difference in specified health benefits for union members and interest payments to bond holders which may very well be necessary for the bond holder to afford health coverage?

None. Absolutely none.

Thoughts on Obama’s Comparison of Tim Geithner to Alexander Hamilton

Since making that comparison several days ago, I’ve heard several news commentators hail Barack Obama as a scholarly historian. Duhhh!!!!

Other than exhibiting what should be a high school senior’s knowledge of American History, I don’t see any indication that Barack Obama’s knowledge of American History has any depth.

Sure, Geithner and Hamilton are/were the Secretary of the Treasury … Hamilton being the first and Geithner … hopefully not being the last.

And, yes, they both appear to have a propensity to piss people off. I don’t know of any single detractor of Tim Geithner that stands out among the growing crowd, so I suspect that his “Aaron Burr” is more a reflection in the mirror than any one individual. Right … I think Geitner’s own worst enemy is himself.

Beyond that, there is really no comparison in spite of Barack Obama’s claims.

Timothy Geithner has literally bounced from one government job to another receiving accolades for, at best, dubious performance.

Alexander Hamilton was, on the other hand, a person with considerable experience in the private sector, had considerable military experience, and actually performed services to the country that increased it’s financial stability.

That appears to be in marked contrast to Tim Geitner’s bunglings from failure to pay taxes to failure to perform due diligence regarding AIG and other financial institutions and actually recommending the wording of the Dodd Amendment to the recent stimulus bill.

So, why are there 17 high level vacancies at the Treasury Department? It’s not due to a Congress that’s willing to approve any pet Orangutan that Barack Obama might nominate. I’ve heard it suggested that it might be because of the propensity for many of Obama’s “tax evading” nominees receiving too much scrutiny. To the contrary, that seems to be more of a prerequisite and badge of honor rather than a hindrance. So, I don’t buy that argument.

I think it has to do with Tim Geithner. I don’t think anyone wants to work for him. Chew on that thought for a while.

So, is Barack Obama sticking by this bonehead because he’s such a great financial expert?

Or is it due to some plain ole’ cronyism. You know. Geithner’s father provided Obama’s mother with a job, so Obama is providing his son, Tim, with a job.

Let’s look at Geithner’s record.

As governor of the New York Federal Reserve, he oversaw the collapse of several major banks based in New York, Bank of America and Citibank. He even encouraged or strongarmed BOA into buying Merrill Lynch … the last straw that has practically broken BOA’s back.

He’s been an ardent supporter of  “Mark-to-market” accounting, a stand that I believe will eventually prove to be the single most important cause of the collapse of the banking industry.

He was the single most important person in orchestrating the initial $700 billion plus stimulus package. Time and numerous Monday morning quarterbacks will eventually discern the wisdom of that move. My personal opinion is that if “mark to market” had been suspended or amendeda year ago, the initial $700 billion wouldn’t have been necessary for any reason.

Then we find he doesn’t think, because of his exhalted position, that he has to pay income taxes. And when he finally does pay them, the IRS gives him preferential treatment by not applying penalties like they would to 300 million other people. Hell, they’ve tried to hit me with penalties for taxes that I paid on time. I suppose you and I are supposed to make up the deficits in collections caused by people like Mr. Geithner and former senator Tom Daschle who think they’re too important to bother with paying taxes.

Then he adds wording to the recent stimulus bill to exempt the bonuses paid to the financial division of AIG, and hides in the closet about the issue until Senator Chris Dodd, tired of taking all the heat for his (the Dodd) amendment, finally rats Geithner out.

So, we now find Barack Obama adroitly blowing smoke up our derrieres by comparing Geithner to Alexander Hamilton. And we find numerous news commentators hailing Obama as an adroit historian while they, too, have a proctoscope rather than a megaphone firmly pressed to their lips.

Break out the jar of Vaseline, we’re going to get at least 3 plus more years of this treatment so we may as well try to ease some of the pain of being repeatedly buggered.