Sunday, March 27, 2005
Rarely is there any good news from the Middle East, especially in regard to Presdient Bush's policies, and the effects from his policies - especially from a native of the region - but, although he leaves some questions 'hanging', Mr. Ibrahim does give us some good news, from his regions point of view.
Also from the Times is a partial list of what some counties have been doing. You can find that information here. It would, hoever, be nice to know what all of the counties have done or are doing.
Also, both parties want to depose KC election officials, and Judge Bridges has set the schedule for that, for the week of April 18th.
Right now, the voter rolls in Washington State are maintained by each individual county, and when a person is convicted of a felony, the court is supposed to notify the county of residence of the felon, that s/he has been convicted of a felony.
However, there is an immediate problem here. If a person, who has residency in one county, is convicted of a felony in another county, they often are not reported by the convicting county to the county where the felon resides. This new, state-wide voter registration data base (scheduled to go on line some time this year) is supposed to eliminate that problem, and I really hope it does do that.
The other problem that already exists, and will not be addressed by the new data base, is when someone is convicted of a felony in Federal Court, as the Federal Courts are apparently under no obligation to notify the state or county where the felon has residency.
Here's a simple solution to that, although it will involve politicians (which almost always seems to 'complicate' things) - enact a Federal law that, whenever anyone is convicted of a felony, whether that conviction is in State or Federal Court, the State/County of residency is automatically notified of that conviction. I know that Washington State isn't the only state to revoke a felons right to vote upon conviction of a felony, so it logically stands to reason that other states' have the same notification problem. This solution should eliminate that problem for all states.
Really all that needs to be done, on the Federal level, is add a new field in the NCIS data base of convicted felons, to have the "notify State/County" information. Yes, it would entail a certain cost to have that information added to that data base, and yes, it would entail a certain cost to have the states and counties notified, but I think the cost for that would actually be minimal in the long run. Corporations are constantly updating their data bases to include new information related to their business, so why couldn't the government do the same? (I know, I know - logic and simplicity and government usually don't mix, but still, it could be done.)
In Washington State, anyone convicted of a felony loses their right to vote, and that right can only be restored after the convicted felon has served their time, paid all legal fees and any and all restitution ordered by the courts. Then, the convicted felon has to go through one more step, and petition for his/her right to vote to be restored once s/he has fulfilled all of the other items first. If s/he is successful in the petition, then their voting rights will be restored, and they then re-register to vote - but not before then.
Of course, there is no way to know exactly who these felon voters actually voted for, unless each of them is asked, under oath, who they voted for; guess what? The chances of that happening are slim to none, due to both the cost and time factors (not to mention the 'credibility' factor).
Those people who have been found to have voted illegally, and have had their names forwarded to the various County Prosecutor offices throughout the state to have their registrations challenged, should be, will be, and are being purged from the voter rolls, which is good.
My question is this - why wasn't this dealt with before the election?
Sunday, March 20, 2005
That folks, in case you aren't aware, is our National Symbol that is being killed off. In Canada. So far, nobody seems to know why, yet, either.
Here are some possible reasons -
- The person(s) responsible thinks it's great sport;
- The person(s) responsible is doing it for body parts, to sell on the black market as 'medicinal aids';
- The person(s) responsible hates the US, and is 'getting back' at the US by killing our National Symbol (but why they would think that they are 'getting back' at the US that way beats me).
There are no legitimate reasons for this at all, and I hope that the Canadian authorities are able to find and stop the person(s) responsible for the slaughter.
Bald eagles are magnificent animals (beyond being the National Symbol of the US), and should be appreciated for that, not slaughtered.
They just don't seem to get it, you know? Well, here's the answer to your question, MSM. Our troops will come home when the Iraqi's are ready for them to come home, and not a minute sooner, OK?
World War II ended in May of 1945, and we still have troops stationed in Europe (primarily in Germany). The Korean War ended in 1953, and we still have about 38,000 troops stationed in South Korea, with more troops (US Marines) stationed in Okinawa. That's 60 and 52 years respectively (for those of you who may be math challenged), so ... two years after the start of the war in Iraq, the MSM is obsessing over when our troops will come back from Iraq? Give me a break!
One more time folks, and repeat after me - our troops will come home when the Iraqi's are ready for them to come home, and not a minute sooner, and certainly not according to some timetable wished for by the MSM or the donks.
Do you get it now? Sheesh!
You can read about this here and here.
Her death is a tragedy of 'convenience' that must not be allowed to happen. Contact your state and federal legislators and demand that Terry's life be spared.
For those living in Washington State, you can find your state legislator here.
For federal legislators, go here.
If you still would like to help monetarily, I posted links on how you can do that here.
I believe that the true measure of a society is how that society treats the least among it. What does it say about our society when we legally execute someone who cannot speak for themself?
To me, this smacks of desperation on the part of the Dems. I mean, their candidate was certified, right? Then why are they trying to dig out more votes from rejected provisional votes? Are they afraid of what the Reps may turn up?
UPDATE: Stefan Sharkansky of Sound Politics has also posted on this subject here.
Originally, 348 provisional votes were reported as being put through the vote counting machines, but now there are an additional 660 more improperly tabulated votes (in the article, it is reported that the total is 660, which is incorrect), bringing the total to more than 1,000 improperly tabulated provisional votes machine counted in KC. That alone should be grounds for throwing out the election for governor, but the Dems will 'spin' it all away, and convince the local MSM that this is not sufficient grounds.
1,008 far outnumbers 129 don't you think?
UPDATE: Stefan Sharkansky over at Sound Politics sheds some new light on the total number of provisional ballots put through the AccuVote machines here.
Initiative 601 as passed by the electorate, limits the ability of the State Legislature to raise taxes by forcing a super majority vote of the Legislature before they can raise taxes. State Dems are trying to change that to a simple majority vote instead.
Legislators are duly elected representatives of the people, and as such are obligated to work for the people, doing the will of the people. Seems that they have forgotten that little fact, as in trying to make this change, they are obviously not doing the will of the people.
Why is it that Dems are constantly trying to find new ways to grab more money from the people? Oh, yeah ... I forgot. Dems never see a tax they don't like.
Apparently many Legislators are forgetting that 2006 is right around the corner - when many are up for re-election. Let's send them a message next year, shall we, that they work for us, and if they don't want to work for us, then we'll find someone else who will work for us.
UPDATE: The Seattle Times is opposed to this idea in this op-ed piece.
My answer to that question of objectivity is - I don't know, but I certainly do hope so. Those people are paid to be objective in all cases brought before the State Supreme Court, not just this (potential) case. I have my doubts, though, considering some of their recent decisions.
If they cannot be objective, then they must remove themselves from hearing this case, plain and simple. We will see whan the time comes.
Yes, Mr. Logan, you will remain the target as long as you continue to try to cover your rear by making ludicrous statements, and trying to abdicate your responsibilities of properly overseeing elections - which is your job - onto the electorate, and by holding back documents from requesters.
It is beyond time, Mr. Logan, for you to come clean in this matter.
Saturday, March 12, 2005
The Shark over at Sound Politics has also posted on this here.
Mr. Irons will soon be out of a job, as his is one of the seats that will be eliminated due to the people cutting the number of Council members from 13 down to 9, so I urge everyone to lend a hand and help Mr. Irons get that new job that he wants.
In David's article, he leads up to his "burning question" by relating an insipid story of how he watched the incipient democracy movement flicker briefly in Tiananmen Square until it (was brutally crushed) ended, with another P-I reporter, and then reels off the string of the failed democracy movements in Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and again, Tiananmen Square, while briefly mentioning the collapse of the Soviet Union, and the falling of the Berlin Wall (which, in case you hadn't noticed David, are related events), neglecting to mention Afghanistan or the Ukraine - at all.
David's entire article is rooted in pessimism, as evidenced by the very first word of his question - if. David, in case you haven't noticed, democracy has already taken root in the Middle East!
Let's see if we can answer David's "burning question", shall we?
Afghanistan freed of an evil tyrannical government, and the population allowed to vote - for the first time ever! - because GWB saw the danger posed by the Al-Qaida training camps funded and protected by the former Afghan regime.
Iraq freed of an evil tyrannical government, and the population allowed to vote - for the first time in almost 50 years - because GWB saw a real and present danger in the former regime.
In Palestine, Arafat the kleptocrat finally dies (bet he was surprised when those virgins weren't there!), and they hold elections there (ok, so they were rigged and another terrorist now runs that fledgling government).
Egypt will be holding presidential elections this year, and more than one candidate will be allowed on the ballot since Mubarek attained that office with the killing of Sadat.
Men recently voted in Saudi Arabia, and it is rumored that women will soon be allowed to vote - for the first time ever! - there too.
There are pro-democracy demonstrations happening in Lebanon against the Syrian oppression/occupation, which has caused the Lebanese government to resign en-masse in protest over the Syrian oppression/occupation; Hezbollah has organized demonstrations, too - in support of their masters, the Syrians - but, so what? They haven't had nearly the numbers of people in their demonstrations, as those who have demonstrated against Syria.
There have also been reports of pro-democracy demonstrations in Syria, for Pete's sake! Small, and infrequent, to be sure, but apparently they have happened!
In conclusion, since democracy has taken root in the Middle East (David - get your head out of that place where the sun never shines, and open your eyes, dude!), and that is a result of GWB's vision, forthrightness, and determination, as seen through the actions in Afghanistan and Iraq (who's next - Syria or Iran?) by the US military, I can only say that the credit for that belongs to GWB AND the determination of the freed people, and those yearning to be free, of the Middle East.
Well, either Harry Stonecipher, the former CEO of Boeing totally ignored that adage, or was totally ignorant of that adage, as not only did he lose his position at Boeing for having an affair with a co-worker, but he will soon lose his wife as well, as she has filed for divorce. That's what you get for "thinking" with the wrong "head", Harry.
But, don't feel too sorry for good ol' Harry. He'll receive the balance of his 2005 $1.5 million dollar salary (up to his April 1 retirement date - about $250,000.00), plus his 2004 bonus of $2.1 million dollars from Boeing, so Harry ain't hurtin' for cash - yet. The future former Mrs. Stonecipher is planning on sharing in that tidy little sum, plus whatever other assets ol' Harry has laying around.
Let that be a lesson to you, kids. Keep it away from the flagpole!
As more and more information comes out, both through the local MSM, and at Sound Politics, I am left to ponder one of two conclusions.
Either those who are in charge of, and work in, the King County Elections office are totally inept and incompetent, or they willfully rigged the election to go to the former Attorney General. There are just too many "problems" with the way the election was "handled" in KC for me to believe anything else.
It would be nice for me personally to have enough money to live 'comfortably' (as the wealthy like to say), and not have to work another day in my life if I didn't want to. Oh, yes, that would be nice.
But, just as I really don't care about what some Hollywood star thinks, or is going through, I really don't care that Bill is still occupying the top spot on the Forbes list. Will the world come to a screeching halt if Bill happens to slip a notch or two on the list? No. My life - and probably his - will continue, regardless of where Bill is on the Forbes list.
Sheesh ... such gushing and fawning ... almost makes one want to hurl.
Unfortunately for the NAACP and the American Jewish Congress, I-200 (which bans the use of race in education or public hiring) stands in their way, and politicians are reluctant to do anything to weaken that (probably for fear they'd get voted out of office more than anything else).
One bill has already 'died' in the House, and a similar bill in the Senate - SB 5575 - sponsered by Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles, D-Seattle faces an uphill battle for 'survival', although it has passed out of commitee.
While I am for everyone having the opportunity for a higher education, I am against basing entry to that higher education on the color of your 'exterior packaging', or where you're from. My question to the NAACP is - what does the color of your skin, or where you are from, have to do with your ability to think and reason? The answer, which neither organization will tell you, is - nothing. Not a thing.
If that is the case (and I really believe it to be so), why does the NAACP, and other groups, continue to push for this raced-based agenda?
Apparently, it doesn't matter which side of the political aisle you're on, as this article in the P-I shows - if you want to pay for road improvements, add to the gas tax. People in the state of Washington already pay 28 cents in tax money for every gallon of gas purchased, and state legislators want to increase that? We pay, on average, 5 cents per gallon more than the rest of the nation.
What I think our legislators need to do is:
- Spend a year living at or near the state 'poverty line', to see the real impact of the regressive taxes in this state on those in the lower income brackets, before they can even propose legislation to increase existing taxes, or create new taxes (I know - it's a fantasy idea that will never happen);
- Failing that, each legislator needs to look at programs that they are responsible for to see what bloat (all government programs have bloat) can be cut without hurting those less fortunate, or endangering the public in some way (such as not properly maintaining bridges, for example);
- Freeze spending increases.
- Much as I'm loathe to suggest this, replace the existing regressive tax system, which is based on the costs of goods and/or services, with a state income tax, which would at least be based on people's incomes. I would also suggest that there be a minimum income dollar amount established whereby those at or below that level are exempt from paying any tax whatsoever (of course, that last part might be a pipe dream too).
From what I have been able to glean from various sources, our legislators aren't even attempting to look at ways to cut spending, just looking for more ways to tax the citizens of Washington. Twenty eight cents per gallon is already too high of a tax for some in this state; increasing that without even trying to cut spending first is despicable in my book.
Thursday, March 10, 2005
Gray Wolf adds, Good riddance to Dan RaTHer! Too bad he didn't get fired outright by C-BS.
UPDATE: Captain Ed over at Captains Quarters weighs in on Dan RaTHer's retirement with song lyrics sent to him by one of his readers.
Sunday, March 06, 2005
For more information on this, see what Ed Morrisey at Captain's Quarters has written here, here, here, here, and here. (Boy, when Cap'n Ed grabs on to something, he just won't let go - which is great!)
When I do any more posts that might even seem to be endorsements of a politician, I may have to do the same thing - insert a disclaimer - that the Captain did here, just so I don't get fined by the FEC. This is more than not good - it's outrageous!
Trunk over at Powerline also has some things to say on this issue here.
Saturday, March 05, 2005
To the ladies and gentlemen of the Lincoln and Shoup, from a Navy vet - Welcome home from a job well done, and thank you for leading the way!
From the article - "This is no joke! Don't stop reading until you've finished this letter," pleads the two-page mailing, sent to Democrats this week by state party Chairman Paul Berendt.
Fear is a tried-and-true motivator in political fund raising. And Berendt spun a scary tale of Karl Rove, President Bush's deputy chief of staff and top political adviser, calling the shots in Republican Dino Rossi's case against the election of Democratic Gov. Christine Gregoire.
State Democratic Party Chairman Paul Berendt warned of "guerrilla tactics" by "right-wing attorneys" and "extremist operatives." (I'm not an attorney, so that must mean I'm an extremist operative using guerrilla tactics. Hey, cool!) He said they are "meticulously crafting a case to unseat Christine Gregoire."
To fight back, Berendt said, Democrats must renew their membership in the party. "I am not an alarmist," Berendt wrote in the letter. "This is not Chicken Little crying: 'The sky is falling.' "
"Renew your membership today at the most generous level you can afford and help me stop Rove's mignons [sic] in their tracks." (Mignons? Paul, I suggest you learn how to use a spell checker before you send any more letters, pal. The word is spelled 'minions'. Sheesh!)
Berendt says in his letter (see above) that he isn't being 'Chicken Little', crying that the 'sky is falling'. Oh, no? Then, what are you trying to say, Paul? Sure seems to me that this is precisely what you are trying to say.
Karl Rove pulling the strings for the Rossi campaign? Oh, please.
What the real tragedy is here folks, is not the current drug policy, but the disintegration of the family, and the eroding of the moral framework of our society. What the KCBA, and the others who endorse this, fails to acknowledge in their lunatic proposal, is the fact that moral relativism (if it feels right, do it) has been pushing out the concept of right vs. wrong for years now, and that is the real reason why we have a drug problem. They are looking to "cure" the symptoms, and forgetting (or ignoring) the root causes of the drug problem. The moral relativist crowd, enabled by (mostly) left leaning politicians, are working harder and harder to erode what's left of the 'family values' that built this nation to be what it is, and we are now, and will continue to be, reaping the tragic 'fruits' of their labors.
Take it from a former drug user from a broken family - we cannot continue to allow this to happen!
The first is that, from what I have been able to learn, our legislators aren't doing much if anything at all towards making the necessary cuts in the growth of spending first, before they try to come up with new ways to seperate us from more of our hard earned dollars.
Senate Transportation Chair, Mary Margeret Haugen, D-Camano Island said " ... she could support a two-step, 4-cent-per-gallon gas tax increase. The plan could raise $3.5 billion (over a 10 year span - Ed.) toward rebuilding the Alaskan Way Viaduct in Seattle and financing a new state Route 520 bridge across Lake Washington.
Haugen also said she also likes the idea of indexing the tax so that it slowly grows with inflation. She also likes a gross-weight fee on vehicles, including passenger cars."
While doing something about the disaster waiting to happen, also known as the Viaduct, is a good thing, my question, if this plan gets passed is, when the 10 years are up, will the tax go away? Not likely. I have yet to see local politicians (especially Democrats!) rescind a tax that generates any amount of revenue.
The second point I want to make is this. This kind of a tax is regressive in nature, in that it unfairly burdens those in lower income brackets, because it is not based on their level of income, but on the cost of services or goods. Most people of lower incomes own older cars (if they own a car at all) that are not very fuel-efficient, and as a result, have to go to the gas station more often than people of higher incomes who usually do own fuel-efficient vehicles (and of course, have more 'disposable income'), which in effect, makes those of lower incomes pay more taxes than their more affluent neighbors. This state has such an abundance of regressive taxes that hurt lower income people, it makes me wonder why more people aren't leaving than already are leaving (kind of makes me wonder why I'm still here, too!).
Our legislators need to really take a good long, hard look at the amount of money coming in, and the actual costs of services, and figure out ways to work within their means before they start trying to figure out how to generate more tax revenue, especially regressive forms of revenue generation.
I started a new job this past Monday, and have been doing a lot of painting - which is hard work, especially after having not done a whole lot for almost a year - and I was basically just too tired to do anything here.
I don't know yet, but this may be a 'pattern' for a while, until I get used to being back to work, and I apologize in advance if this disappoints anyone. I'll just have to see how quickly my body adapts to being physically active again. Hopefully it won't take too long.