Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A Total Eclipse of the Sun

Wednesday, July 22, 2009 will bring the longest total eclipse of the sun of the 21st century. It won't be visible on our side of the globe ...maximum totality will occur over uninhabited North Iwo Jima island.

While skies darken on that side of the globe, let's try to focus on bright spots on on this side of the globe. For example, let's try hard to ignore yet another Goldman Sachs (vice chairman of the board) being named to an important Federal Govt. post in the State Dept. namely, undersecretary of state for economic, energy and agricultural affairs. [link]

Surprised? Then maybe you didn't see it coming when this article came out back in March 2009. In writing, we call this "foreshadowing."

Mr. Hormats has been a visiting lecturer at Princeton University and is a member of the Board of Visitors of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and the Dean's Council of the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Mr. Hormats' publications include;

Mr. Hormats earned a B.A. from Tufts University with a concentration in economics and political science; an M.A. and a Ph.D. in international economics from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.

He is also;
Trustee, vice chairman of the Economic Club of New York, although I'm wondering if, with his new State Dept. appointment, he will have to step down? After all, they claim to be:
...nonpolitical, nonpartisan and nonprofit. Its membership (individual, not corporate) of about 700 is drawn primarily from the senior leadership ranks of the business and financial communities and the associated professions. Its individual members represent a wide diversity of opinion. [link]
Trustee of Freedom House, yet another he might have to step down from?

Freedom House, a non-profit, nonpartisan organization, is a clear voice for democracy and freedom around the world. Through a vast array of international programs and publications, Freedom House is working to advance the remarkable worldwide expansion of political and economic freedom. [link]

And finally...

He is a council member of Securing America's Future Energy (SAFE), a group that spent a massive amount of lobbying money ($715,000 per the "Open Secrets" website) in 2007 and 2008, while the years prior and after they've spent next to nothing by comparison. I'm guessing they got what they wanted??

It's kind of strange that SAFE submitted a plan back in Sept/08 to dramatically change the transportation industry (the transformation of our transportation sector from one dependent on petroleum to one largely powered by electricity), while at the same time, one of their co-chair members, namely John F. Lehman, was a fundraiser for the John McCain camp whose slogan "Drill, Baby, Drill" still rings out in some sectors today.

But let's not speculate. (pun intended)

His past relationships include;

  • National Security Council - senior staff member
  • Pacific Council on International Policy - director
  • Rockefeller Center Club - member
  • U.S. Department of State - assistant secretary

THE BOTTOM LINE: It would appear that the incestuous relationship between GS and Big Gov is alive and doing well. At this rate, there will be more Goldman Sachs and Google execs in our Government than Democrats... hahaha, my bad. It's a total eclipse of our Government, wouldn't you agree?

Monday, July 20, 2009

You Can't Handle the Truth!

In the movie "A Few Good Men," JAG lawyer Kaffee (played by Tom Cruise) demands, "I want the truth."

In response, Col. Jessup (played by Jack Nicholson) shouts back, "You can't handle the truth!"

Little bits and pieces of the truth are floating around in a huge vat of speculation, innuendo and fiction with respect to;
  • the initial bank bailouts
  • the Freddie/Fanny bailouts
  • the AIG bailout
  • the GM/Chrysler bailouts, and
  • the subsequent mainstream bailout (ie. Stimulus Plan)
The actions of our Federal Government redirected extraordinarily massive amounts of taxpayer dollars into the hands of a few "privileged" entities in all instances.

What was the tipping point that led our Government on the largest spending spree in our country's (in any country's) history?

By now we know that there are some dirty tracks leading directly to Paulson's doorstep, as this article clearly points out.

But that only excuses the first round of TARP... an explanation that "we can't handle the truth" ...quote:
Making his first appearance on Capitol Hill since leaving office, the former Treasury secretary Hank Paulson said it was important at the time not to reveal the extent of officials' concerns, for fear it would "terrify the American people and lead to an even bigger problem".
So, I'm guessing there is some truth to the rumors that Martial Law would have been declared if the first TARP had not been signed? And possibly there is a glimmer of truth to the idea that so-called leaders in Washington truly believe this nation is so weak, it can't handle the truth?

For some reason, I just can't shake that picture of Jack Nicholson as Col. Jessup out of my head.

In the many catastrophes that have hit this nation, from Pearl Harbor to 9/11 to Katrina and more, it would appear to me that this country draws more closely together to help its fellow citizens when facing great adversity. And, in most instances, they did not stand around waiting for their Government to act... many from all across the land came in droves to help out where ever they best could.

Can we, the American people, handle the truth?

You tell me...

The better question might be, what would the American people do if the truth revealed that they had been swindled... that some in high places had orchestrated the entire financial mess. Well, then, I'm guessing the Federal Government might have cause for concern.

I ask again, "Can we, the American people, handle the truth?"

Friday, July 17, 2009

Must see video

Not much time to blog today, so I'm leaving you with this short video. A MUST see!

Will be back tomorrow with some HOT info for all of you!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

While We Were Sleeping a Tea Party was Brewing

Practically everyone remembers the first round of large tea parties held earlier this year on tax filing day -- right? I posted pics from twitpic here for all of you to see the crowds gathering in cities and towns across the nation.

Fox News was about the only major network to cover them in detail.

Most all other major networks (if we can call them that today) either dismissed them and/or derided them -- some outright calling them "turf" roots instead of "grassroots" -- something even Pontificating Pelosi claimed when asked about them. They would love people to believe this is some kind of Republican thing, not grassroots at all.

So, I grew really curious... methinks they (networks and WH crowd) doth protest too much.

Curiosity is at once a curse and a blessing. (I'll explain that another time.)

I searched on the map for all the July 4th tea parties, compared the map with the 2008 election map and noticed a very interesting pattern. It seems the majority of the tea parties were happening in BLUE zones -- you know -- those are the zones where the Dems supposedly won by a landslide.

Not all of the tea parties, grant it... there were a few Republican strongholds holding tea parties as well, but some of the BIGGEST TURNOUTS seemed to be occurring in MAJOR "landslide" DEM cities.

Since many in attendance for most of these tea parties are from local and surrounding areas, if one has a curious mind such as mine, one might be thinking something isn't quite right here. If those so-called-big-networks were right, and this is turf-roots, not grassroots, either the voting machines got something wrong, or there is something similar to "buyers remorse" happening in these largely Dem territories... wouldn't you think?

But I digress.

There are bigger things going on.

I've been following twitter A LOT these past few weeks. Even watched/participated in the Twitter Tea Party that happened last weekend. It was kinda fun, and enlightening, all at the same time.

But here's what has been happening while we were sleeping...

Another MASSIVE Tea Party is Brewing.

I'm talking MASSIVE!!!!

But for this tea party, it will require travel -- because they're taking right to Washington DC.

Seriously. Check this out.

To all the national networks who avoided reporting anything about the tea parties and/or derided them and tried to paint them as ruffians, hoodlums, whatever ...man-oh-man are you in for a surprise. Bet you're wishing you tried to cover them honestly now, right? Nah. You could care less. You'd probably far prefer covering Obama's date nights and their cute doggy or the little organic garden thingy.


While the major news networks were tuned into the Sotomayor confirmation hearings all day yesterday, here's what happened while they were sleeping.

A massive twitter campaign sprang up organizing petitioning and/or calls to Reps to Read the Bill (referring to Obomacare).

Another massive grassroots push is supporting the Ron "Skywalker" Paul Bill. Read this for a truly entertaining perspective on this bill (I LOVED it! Reminded me of Czar Trek all over again!) -- and read this for a more serious look at it.

And on a completely different story, looks like the birth certificate thingy might soon be resolved. (It will be nice to put this puppy to rest once and for all.)

The resolution is coming from a truly unlikely source and a case that I have not yet heard any mainstream (or otherwise) news report on, so I'm not even sure if this case filed by U.S. Army Reserve Major Stefan Frederick Cook is true -- or if the many other U.S. Army soldiers said to be joining on with the case is a fact. Still, it would be nice to put this issue behind us. I'm looking forward to the confirmation that a vault copy certificate has been brought forth and authenticated in a court of law.

It's driving my curiosity nuts!

Kind of like a mosquito in your bedroom at night that simply won't let you sleep.


There are a ton of other HOT stories (particularly in the financial sector) that went unnoticed by mainstream media as they kept covering the Sotomayor confirmation hearings. But, it's late, and I have work to complete before I can go to sleep tonight.

See you tomorrow... time permitting.

PS: Hey Indiana! How are you liking them new Fire Safe Cigarettes? Not sure what I'm talking about? Check your pack and look for the FSC on the package. If your cigarettes keep going out on you, welcome to the new law that went into effect here as of July 1/09.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

The Most Incredible Financial Story Ever

John Crudele from the New York Post writes, "...here's where the conspiracy starts to unfold -- for the government."

Apparently, "...a couple weeks ago the NYSE suddenly announced that brokerage firms would no longer have to report their program trades. The new rule takes effect next week."

If you're wondering what all of this is about, it leads back to a previous post I made here at WAHM DIARY, called "Czar Trek and Pump & Dump" ...read the Pump and Dump section carefully. (link opens in new window)

Think markets are NOT being manipulated? Then you need to learn more about the secret, rapid-fire, stock- and commodities-trading software that has supposedly been stolen (and sold?).

Grab a cup of coffee, then take your time and read through these latest articles from the mainstream media (all links open in new window):

New York Post: "Influence is all in the bag for Government Sachs"

Bloomberg: "Goldman Sachs Loses Grip on Its Doomsday Machine"

Reuters: "A Goldman Trading Scandal?"

There was a quote in the above Reuters story that I found particularly interesting:
Federal authorities say the platform quickly processes rapid developments in the markets and uses top secret mathematical formulas to allow the firm to make highly-profitable automated trades.
Which "Federal" authorities knew about it, I wonder...???

This leads me to ask the following two-fold question:
When our hard earned wages are invested into pension funds, do our pension fund administrators use their own secret, black-box trading software?

...or are they simply the stooges that Wall Street firms rely on so they can use their black-box trading programs to fleece us all?

If the latter is true, which Federal Authorities have allowed Wall Street to fleece us?

Ah, heck, it's all just speculation on my part. Who said pun?

I'm guessing, however, based on the news above, that it is absolutely no surprise to hear that Goldman Sachs are "poised to report the largest profit since it set earnings records in 2007."

Another commentary on this entire subject that is well worth reading comes from Zero Hedge: "Is A Case Of Quant Trading Sabotage About To Destroy Goldman Sachs?"

You're still day trading?


Good luck with that.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Tax Withholding for Independent Contractors?

Got this in my email inbox today...
You should be worried if you...
(a) live in California AND/OR if you
(b) are an Independent Contractor AND/OR
(c) if you know that "Whatever happens in the 'land of fruits 'n nuts' (that would be CA) gets copied everywhere else"...
Apparently, the California Assembly just passed SB 17 on a majority vote which contains a provision for a 3% withholding tax on independent contractors.

If this bill becomes law, all who contract with IC's will be required to withhold 3% of the monthly check of every IC and remit this amount to the state, just like a payroll withholding tax.

Throughout history, across the country, Independent Contractors have been exempt from withholding taxes because many of their expenses are deductable. Independent Contractors make up a LARGE proportion of small businesses throughout the country. A fair percentage of them are part time contractors, most are family owned businesses. An up front 3% withholding could result in shortages of much needed operating capital that helps keep them running through the year during "down" months. Although they could potentially receive most (if not all) of the 3% tax back after filing year-end returns, the long wait for the return of those funds may force many of them out of business.

This legislation sets a dangerous precedent that other states, and even the Federal Government, could follow.

Beyond the hardship this places on Independent Contractors, and the extra paperwork burden it places on those who hire them, I see this as an attack on the entrepreneurial spirit as well.

Many entrepreneurs will think twice about hanging that "Open for Business" shingle on their lawn and/or posting it on their website. And... I'm guessing... far many more Independent Contractors will think twice about doing business with California firms.

As I recall, it was the small Mom and Pop businesses that helped California stay afloat at one point during their crisis.

This is the thanks they get?

I could be wrong -- but I wonder -- what percentage of those tea party goers are Independent Contractors? Sounds to me like their numbers are about to grow. I'm guessing grassroots instead of green shoots are about to carpet California.

If you are an Independent Contractor in California... or if you hire Independent Contractors for your business... here is the contact info for the CA Governor and Senate President. You might want to contact them to try to stop this freight train from steam rolling its way through your business...

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger
State Capitol Building
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: 916-445-2841
Fax: 916-558-3160

Senate President Pro tem Darrell Steinberg
State Capitol, Room 205
Sacramento, CA 95814

It's your struggle now, California.

It might be our struggle next...

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Cap And Trap

Those who know me well, know that I truly believe in respecting the planet, wildlife and our natural resources. When and where possible, I reduce my own "carbon footprint" ...and I'm a strong supporter of the Cub Scout "leave no trace behind" training that I'm happy to see my son learning.

One dear friend used to tease me, saying, "You don't even litter!"

Furthermore, I think CAFOs are NOT farms and should be regulated as the industrial entities that they are, complete with related industrial waste, OSHA and zoning laws. (You want cheap milk, cheese and burgers, go raise your own dang cow and don't force us to pay for your desire to be a cheapskate.)

And I believe there are far more ways all of us can work together to live in sync with nature and create a beautiful, healthier planet in the process.

For this, I've been "labelled" an environmentalist.

Well... I'm firmly against millions of people being forced to screw in billions of mercury-filled bulbs into sockets across the land. I think, quite frankly, it is asinine... regardless how minuscule the amount of mercury is contained in each bulb. And I think the so-called "green" movement is off its rocker for supporting such absurd policies to supposedly "save" power consumption.

The stupidity of the plan, quite frankly, boggles my mind.

I also think coal sequestration is one of the all-out-stupidest ideas I've EVER heard with respect to so-called "clean coal" and that scientists supporting it should be forced to undergo sanity tests if they can actually claim with 100% certainty that it will never turn water into acid years from now. (Yeah, sure. I wonder what the archaeologists of the future are going to think about us when they dig those sites up?)

And even further, I believe power is absolutely necessary to our way of life in this century... that it is needed, new sources need to be created and existing sources should be supported and assisted to become as efficient as they can be -- and that, yes, we should be energy independent -- and that we have (and should use) the resources to make it happen far faster than most people might think.

For this, I've been "labelled" an anti-environmentalist.

Finally, I also think it's positively hypocritical on the part of some countries to posture about reducing green-house gases to benefit the planet when so many other countries are not participating in the same plan. Further, I think the plan is nothing more than a power grab (pun and sarcasm intended) that will not benefit the planet near as much as it will fill certain pockets with bucket-loads of money. And if you choose to look closely at some of those pockets, I'm betting you'll find more than one or two individuals that are some of the worst polluters in the history of this planet.

Which brings me to the "Cap & Trap" legislation moving through Washington.

Don't think the Cap & Trade legislation is a power grab?

Then grab a cup of coffee, sit back, and read this brief article:

"If You Don't Hate the Cap and Trade Bill, Let Me Show You Section 304."

What happened to the Constitution?

Where -- oh where -- shall freedom reign?

Friday, July 03, 2009

Hello Sarah Palin... or Good-Bye?

At 4:00 p.m. EST in front of a small gathering of press, Sarah Palin announced she was stepping down as Governor of Alaska... and that she would not be running in the next election.

Gone for good?

I, for one, hope not and her parting speech leads me to believe this is not an end, but rather, a new beginning...
If I have learned one thing: LIFE is about choices!

And one chooses how to react to circumstances. You can choose to engage in things that tear down, or build up. I choose to work very hard on a path for fruitfulness and productivity. I choose NOT to tear down and waste precious time; but to build UP this state and our country, and her industrious, generous, patriotic, free people!

Life is too short to compromise time and resources... it may be tempting and more comfortable to just keep your head down, plod along, and appease those who demand: "Sit down and shut up", but that's the worthless, easy path; that's a quitter's way out. And a problem in our country today is apathy. It would be apathetic to just hunker down and “go with the flow”.

...Productive, fulfilled people determine where to put their efforts, choosing to wisely utilize precious time... to BUILD UP.

And there is such a need to BUILD up and FIGHT for our state and our country. I choose to FIGHT for it! And I'll work hard for others who still believe in free enterprise and smaller government; strong national security for our country and support for our troops; energy independence; and for those who will protect freedom and equality and LIFE... I'll work for and campaign for those PROUD to be American, and those who are INSPIRED by our ideals and won't deride them.

I WILL support others who seek to serve, in or out of office, for the RIGHT reasons, and I don't care what party they're in or no party at all. Inside Alaska – or Outside Alaska.

But I won't do it from the Governor’s desk. [link to Sarah Palin's website]
IMHO, this has all the appearances of the Democrats acting like the papparazi acted towards Lady Di. Love for Diana grew far and wide, by leaps and bounds, and distaste and dislike for the papparazi grew to staggering heights. The Democratic Party would do well to remember that.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Tea Parties Brewing Again

Some thought they would disappear following most of the mainstream media attacks... but not so fast. July 4th - Independence Day here in the USA - is shaping up to be another show of unity, but this time with a message.

T = Taxed
E = Enough
A = Already

Now, you can look at this new message in several ways, but if you're a political pundit, you're probably noticing two important ingredients to the tea being brewed...

FIRST: the solidification and unification of the message means some marketing savvy is now in play which can spell trouble for any politician. It becomes far more difficult to derail.

SECOND: it's not going away. With a unified message, it now has the potential to turn into a wildfire, building into ever bigger momentum over time. In fact, I dare say, it has the potential to become bigger than ACORN. (Yeah, couldn't resist the jab there.)

Will it rage into ever larger wildfire proportions?

Or will it be snuffed out like a candle in the wind?

We shall see...

Washington is the New Wall Street

On another important story -- in case you missed it -- a very short video on CNBC is worth watching. "The New Wall Street is Washington" is the theme and Rick Santelli is one of three guest speakers discussing the Washington manipulations of the stock market that are interfering with the healing process. Don't miss this video.

It might help you understand how, against all the depressing numbers and facts coming out with respect to the economy, the stock markets can still be moderately coasting along -- when you would think they would have already crashed and burned, right?

Take today, for example...

Bloomburg has 2 stories out.

The first story -- "Banks Falling 23% Since May Foreshadow S&P 500 Slump"

Which is quickly followed by this story -- "U.S. Stocks Rise Following S&P 500’s Best Quarter Since 1998"


Watch the brief video clip and you will probably nod your head in agreement on how this could possibly happen.

Personally, I believe they're still playing the "Pump and Dump" game.

Happy Canada Day!

To all my Canadian friends and family, Happy Canada Day!

I hope you are enjoying your extra-long weekend (those of you who get one) and taking time out to celebrate your sovereignty. I'm guessing, the way things are going down here south of your border, you will have more freedoms than we do in the not too distant future. In time, you might become the only model of freedom left. Hang onto it.

(Oh... and ignore those ACORN reps that are crawling all over Ottawa right now trying to mess up your country next. I heard they're desperately trying to find some kind of issue they can use to herd your masses on their path to social unrest. Keep that healthy Canadian skepticism going. You're going to need it!)