Friday, April 19, 2013

Obama's Tax Return

So Barack and Princess Michele had an effective tax rate of 18% on income of 878K.  I can do math.  Excuse my rounding errors.  After charitables they had income of 605K and an effective 18% means they paid 108,900 clams to the Treasury.  Using tax tables for married filing jointly that’s the tax one would pay on 401K of income where the bracket has risen to 33%.  So where did the Obama’s get that \$605,000-301,000= \$304,000 of write-offs?  Maybe they have really, really expensive child care.  Maybe Barack deducts his utilities, whoops nope, Illinois has a state tax so he can’t do that option.  Maybe he had gambling losses or a bank account in Tangiers or Cyprus under a Muslim name.  I dunno.  How do you get \$304K K in write-offs?

Whatever it was, he sure spent a lot of time huddling over the kitchen table with an adding machine compared to Joe Biden who had income of \$378K and paid 20.4% effective rate on way less income.   Of course Joe only gave about 700 bucks to church or any other charity.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Sensational review of Obama budget

The Obama Budget is an interesting read.  First of all, I have trouble with the ten-year budgets that he has instituted.  Projections of 10 years, when next year’s congress will be newly elected and will scoff at this year’s budget, don’t make much sense.  “Look, I’m 62 and have worked hard for 50 years.  So you can expect me to work hard for the next 50.”  But that aside, let’s take a look.

\$210 billion reduction over the next ten years is due to reduced interest payments on the public debt.  Presently interest is historically low, nearly zero.  And expanding government debt is sure to raise interest (Europe) or kill the economy with a perpetual recession(Japan).  Given America’s demand for growth, i.e. loose money, how much chance of lower interest do you think  there is?

\$580 billion  in debt reduction is due to raising taxes on the rich termed “loophole closings”.  I ask you to list, say ten “loopholes”, in the current tax code.  You can’t deduct hardly anything except mortgage payments and contributions.  Maybe Obama thinks manufacturing expenses are loopholes.  At any rate it calls for limiting the amount of deductions you can take, and jacking up business taxes to 42%.  They are already the world’s highest at 25%.  Banks and financial institutions get hit with \$100 billion in new taxes. And he wants capital gains rates to go up 8%. And, static model employed, businesses and rich will not likely change their behavior. (Ahem!!) Next Obama wants to cap your 401K and IRA.  The cap is higher than I’ll ever see--\$3 million—but understand that you can take your pension as a lump sum and roll it over into an IRA. (you probably won’t get to \$3M by saving \$2250 per year) A lot of senior executives would max this out. Just remember this.  A government that considers it morally correct to tell you how much money people can save is a government that will confiscate without qualms and will never save anything themselves.

Medicare spending gets cut \$400 billion.  This somehow reminds me of the philosophy of my renters.  Just stop paying the rent or the doctor bills and say you have saved \$400 billion. This ain’t hard.  I could just walk out of the grocery store and if someone claims I shoplifted, I would just say I’m saving my grocery money. Anyway, cutting MC should really comfort retirees.

\$200 billion gets cut from mandatory spending (like federal retirement benefits) and \$200 billion from discretionary spending like national defense.  Once again, just refuse to pay the bill, and claim it is saving.

Finally Social Security gets chained CPI calculations which reduces the cost of living adjustments and “saves” \$230 billion.   Are you seniors getting the idea that Barack doesn’t give a darn if you die hungry?  Well seniors vote +15% Republican you know.

So there you have it, the big Obama budget which likely won’t pass even among Democrats. Say, I have a novel idea.  Lets go back to the 2006 budget that was almost balanced, add 12% for inflation, and watch the return of prosperity.  (NOT entirely so simple since we have doubled the debt since then, but we had 4.3% unemployment then)

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

What's the word for this?

Let me note a few things Obama has intended or done.

1.    Interfered with a church’s selection of ministers. Justice Dept. sued a Lutheran church who fired a teacher for teaching false doctrine bordering on paganism. Justice Dept argued that the church/school must consider all job seekers irregardless of faith and beliefs (atheists, Muslims, etc.) Supreme Court ruled in favor of the church/school based on right of assembly and free exercise clauses of First Amendment. (Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. EEOC)

2.    Deprive landowners of the right to challenge fines in court. (Sackett v. EPA)

3.    Made Military chaplains accept and perform gay marriage as part of their agreement to serve. (free exercise clause again)

4.    Demanded Catholics and others purchase insurance that covers birth control and abortifacients even though these are against the teachings of their faith.  (Did he miss the free exercise clause when he read the Constitution?)

5.    Attach GPS to a citizen’s vehicle to monitor movements even without any cause to believe that citizen has committed a crime. Was struck down by Supremes in (US v. Jones)

6.    Tried to override state law at his will. DOJ sued several states who had passed state laws to parrot federal law with respect to illegal immigration.  AZ is the most famous.  (also WI,OH,IN) Not only has Obama administration negligently enforced the federal law, they didn’t want states to do it for them. (Arizona v. US)

7.    Drone killed American citizens without bringing formal charges or had battlefield engagement.  When Rand Paul asked if the admin. could use a drone to kill a citizen sitting in a US restaurant, DOJ waffled over the answer until he forced their hand with a filibuster on the Senate floor and a very public attention to the question. (violates A4 “people to be secure in their persons” and A5 “deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law”)

8.    Destroy private property with paying compensation was struck down by Supreme Court in AR Fish & Game v. US (A4  “unreasonable search and seizure” and A5 due process and just compensation clauses)

9.    Dramatically sought to extend statute of limitations to impose penalties on acts done years ago. Was struck down in Gabelli v. SEC.

10.  Appointed at least 31 unaccountable ‘czars’ to spend money and oversee various government operations.   This violates Article II Sect. 2 of Constitution “advice and consent of the Senate”.

11.  Has refused to administer defend the Laws of the Land when he refused to defend Defense of Marriage Act before the Supreme Court.  There are many other laws that one could argue he has let lie lapse. Violates Art. II, Section 3, “faithful execution of laws” clause and Declaration of Independence “assent to laws”.

12.  Demanded banks lend to bad credit risks as an implicit payback for being bailed out. This violates Declaration of Independence “free system” clause and A9 “rights retained by the people”.

13.  Was held in contempt of court for illegally obstructing oil drilling in Gulf of Mexico.

14.  Abrogated bankruptcy law to defraud bondholders and hand over ownership of General Motors and Chrysler to union employees.

15.  Stopped deportation of illegal immigrants, even those who had felony convictions under US laws.

16.  Tried to tell a private company (Boeing) where they could and could not locate. (violates A9 once again)

17.   Enacted legal changes through executive orders.  Perhaps most notably established “Dream Act” to illegals which never passed Congress.

18.   Has mainstreamed the Radical Muslim movement.  In particular the DOJ has defended Sharia Law in several cases.  But US Constitution does not recognize foreign laws. Violates A XIV Sect. 3

19.   Obstructs justice and congressional inquiries with respect to Bengazi incident, Fast and Furious.

20.   Has made fun of rural folks and Christians as people who “cling to their guns and their religion”, asked people of color to “vote for revenge” AND continually seeks to create a society of dependents on federal aid and stirs them up to hatred against the rest.

Golly I can’t remember the word that describes what we do to tyrants, but it sounds like peach and the power to do it resides in Congress and is voted upon by the Senate. Can someone help me out in remembering the word?  And I have to tell it to someone in Congress because they evidently can’t remember what it is either.

DHS monitors Christians

I guess there is no escape now.  Glenn Beck/The Blaze ran the following article.

According to a Colorado undersheriff, Ron Trowbridge, alleged that the Department of Homeland Security trained police to look at Christians who take The Bible literally with intense skepticism.

Trowbridge wrote:

On April 1, 2013 I attended training in La Junta, Colorado hosted by the Colorado State Patrol (CSP). The training was from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm and covered two topics, Sovereign Citizens, and Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs. I was pretty familiar with motorcycle gangs but since we often deal with the so-called sovereign citizen groups I was interested to see what they had to say. The group consisted of police officers, deputies, and CSP troopers. There were about 20 people in attendance.
Trooper Joe Kluczynski taught a 2-hour section on sovereign citizens. Kluczynski spent most of his two hours focusing on how, in his view and apparently the view of Homeland Security, people turn to the sovereign citizen movement. Kluczynski started off by saying there are probably some sovereign citizens in this room and gave a generalized list of those groups that have sovereign citizen views. Among those groups, Kluczynski had listed, were those who believe America was founded on godly principles, Christians who take the Bible literally, and “fundamentalists”. Kluczynski did not explain what he meant by “fundamentalists” but from the context it was clear he was referring again to those who took the Bible literally or “too seriously.”

The sovereign citizen movement is comprised of individuals who believe they don’t answer to federal, state, and local laws. “It is a loosely affiliated group that rejects many elements of governance, including, but not limited to, taxation,” TheBlaze explains.

Well, I have news for DHS.  The people who take the Bible seriously obviously includes what are known as orthodox Christians.  These are the Christians who believe in 9 points about basic Christianity which include such things as Salvation by Grace, human/divine nature of Christ, and literal accuracy of Scripture.  This is what Barna calls ‘evangelical Christians’ and they comprise 8% of the population.  These basic teachings are the basic beliefs of just about every denomination in America.  A few like Jehovah Witness, Mormons, and Unitarians may take issue with one or several of the basic beliefs and are thus called unorthodox.  But since spiritual accuracy of Scripture is only one of the nine, it stands to reason that many more than the 8% fit the government’s estimate (and includes just about every pastor of orthodox Christianity).  In fact, Barna notes that 43% of the population believes in Grace and has had a personal experience of believing in that Grace for themselves.  These, he calls ‘born agains’.  That’s a lot of people for Homeland Security to monitor! (Well indeed, they are also watching those who merely believe that USA was founded on godly principles.)

I could perhaps joke that my own denomination is entirely full of people who believe in literal scripture, but we argue about what it means all the timeJ Indeed, I have met those who argue strongly for literal scripture but seem to believe that we get to heaven on merit. Given that our numbers are at least 8% and likely more like 40%, perhaps we should carefully monitor the Dept. of Homeland Security.

Are we getting close to the days of Bonhoeffer and Niemuller?