Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Sam Brownback to Ave Maria tomorrow

From the AP

Brownback to speak at Michigan law school

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — U.S. Sen. Sam Brownback, a conservative Republican from Kansas who is running for president in 2008, will speak Wednesday morning at the Ave Maria School of Law.

Brownback, who was the school's inaugural commencement speaker in 2003, will briefly talk about the role of the judiciary in an event that is open to the public.

Big Government Push to ban smoking in private businesses

Here we go again. While I'm not a big fan of ciggarette smoking, I'm less of a fan of prohibitionists, so I tend to root for the smokers out of principle.

Big government once again is sticking its nose where it doesn't belong telling businessses how to run their operations. They need to let the market decide on these matters. Some businesses are non smoking. Some businesses permit smoking. That choice should be that of the current business.

We have too much regulation as it is in Michigan. The last thing we need to do is be like the land of fruits and nuts in California.

From the AP

NewsFlash Home | More Michigan News

Lawmakers renew push for smoking ban in bars, restaurants
1/29/2007, 6:07 p.m. ET
The Associated Press

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — State lawmakers are reviving a push to ban smoking in Michigan's bars, restaurants and workplaces.

Earlier efforts have been snuffed out in the Legislature for nearly seven years. But supporters hope a power shift inside the Capitol and momentum from a U.S. surgeon general's report will add Michigan to the growing list of states with tough anti-smoking laws.

"It's time for the Legislature to take a stand on this life-and-death issue," said state Sen. Tom George, a Republican physician from Kalamazoo County's Texas Township. He's sponsoring the legislation along with Sen. Ray Basham of Taylor and Rep. Brenda Clack of Flint, both Democrats.

Previous bills to prohibit smoking in bars and restaurants never got a vote when the Legislature was controlled by Republicans. But now Democrats control the House and the Senate has a new GOP leader.

Advocates say their push is getting more traction and note that seven states, including Ohio, enacted tough anti-smoking laws last year.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

"Global Warming" chicken little crusade to destroy Michigan

Nolan Finley correctly takes Pelosi (and Bush for that matter) to task.
The next steamroller that will flatten Detroit is the relentless
campaign projecting polar bears in bikinis and palm trees in Antarctica.

Hysteria over global warming is turning Americans into a bunch of Henny-Pennys, rushing about screaming for someone to do something before we boil to death in the oceans' waters.

Democrats are listening. They see in the alarmism over greenhouse gasses a populist issue they can leverage to keep control of Congress and seize the White House. And they have a solution:

Squeeze the life out of Detroit's automakers.

It now seems inevitable that the Big Three will bear the burden of cooling the earth. President George W. Bush, in his State of the Union address last week, made higher fuel economy standards the centerpiece of his energy plan. And though cleverly crafted to minimize the harm, the proposal affirms the popular sentiment that automakers own the responsibility for stopping global warming.

Even if all the hype is true. I'll flat out say it. Outside of the snow related industry, I'm not convinced that global warming is a bad thing. I could give a rat's rear end about polar bears in the Arctic (more fish is good anyway) when we have humans here losing our jobs and livelyhoods closer to home.

That said, I do support alternative energy research, but NOT for this reason. I'd rather not have the Middle Eastern countries have us by the you-know-whats due to oil dependency. Telling the Saudis to screw off would be a good thing.

As far as global warming goes, we have some REAL environmental problems a lot more serious than this. Dumping in the great lakes, littering, invasive species (Zebra mussell). That deserves more attention than the current chicken little fad of global warming.

Free Press Editorial for...CONSOLIDATION?!

Ron Dzwonkowski has a good editorial about the massive amount of government in Michigan. With the budget shortfalls in this state, this is an option that needs to be considered.

Michigan has too much government, too many "local units" that survive mainly because local people refuse to give them up and state officials are wary of the political consequences of taking them away. It's an inefficient system, and the tax dollars to support it are no longer there.

But it won't change in a serious way unless the state -- or a lack of money from the state -- starts forcing the issue. Some local governments do share resources and services, but too often Herculean bargaining is required to make such arrangements work. Nobody wants to surrender anything, even if it means saving the taxpayers money. And there are just too many governments to begin with.

Michigan has 83 counties, 533 cities or incorporated villages and 1,242 townships. There also are 781 public school districts, including 229 charter schools, which receive tax dollars.

A good question to ask about all those numbers is why? Next ask, how much does it all cost and how well does it really deliver?

Saturday, January 27, 2007

18 Mill Tax Increase - February 27 elections

Yes, you read that right. I actually was able to have some time the other day to stop buy the County Clerk's office. Under the fairly new law (Chris Ward's bill), elections are now limited to four days a year. We all know about the August and November election days. May is oftentimes the school board election day. What most don't know is that there is a day in February that can also be used for elections.

Two school districts are taking advantage of the February 27 Date. Webberville (parts of which are in Conway and Handy Township) and Whitmore Lake (my current district, part of which is in Green Oak).

This one caught me by surprise until last month. I now have a copy of the information thanks to the good people at our County Clerk's office.

In Webberville, there is only one issue on the ballot. They want to borrow $6.5 million for furningshing and refurnishing equipment. Estimated milliage required to retire the bond debt is 2.15 mills.

In Whitmore Lake, there are three issues on the ballot.

1. Operating Millage Renewal Proposal - 18 mills.

2. Operating Millage Proposal - ANOTHER 18 mills. This is a seperate issue, and got my guard up and then some.

3. .10 mill increase for recreation.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Bush is the best Democrat the Republicans can ask for

Could someone tell me what Bush is smoking?

One of the big reasons why Bush's approval rating is so poor is due to his big government domestic programs. The partisan democrats never liked him ever since Gore lost in 2000. They would never accept him. Much of the base was always weary about him, but voted for him due to his opponents. I was in that camp.

This last plan makes me wonder if I really voted for a moderate democrat.

First off, the energy plan is a disaster for this state. The LAST think our auto industry needs is a bunch of pencil pushers in Washington putting more red tape and more restrictions on them. While I agree that there is need for alternative energy, government picking winners and losers is the wrong way to go. Excuse the language, but this plan doesn't do jackshit toward supporting alternative energy. All this will do is cut more jobs in Michigan, close more plants, and turn this state into a ghost town. Government needs to get out of the way.

Secondly, the health care plan is a tax increase. Period, end of story. It's read my lips all over again.

If the Republicans want to avoid a complete disaster in 2008, they need to nominate a small government conservative and run hard and long away from this trash that Mr. Bush is pushing. I'll be happy to see him retire in two years.

2008 - John Kerry drops out

One of the weakest dems drops out.

From AP via Forbes

John Kerry of Massachusetts, the Democrats' losing presidential candidate in 2004, does not intend to run again in 2008, a Democratic official said Wednesday.

This official said Kerry intends to seek a new six-year term in the Senate

I'd rather see this joker retire for good as he's one of the worst in the senate.

The question is who benefits most from this. Kerry backed the war, as does Hillary, so I'd say advantage Hillary for now.

Another roundabout

Here we go again. From the Argus.

Livingston County has roundabout fever, and it's spreading to Howell.
Howell City Manager Shea Charles said plans, approved by the City Council, are in the works to construct a two-lane roundabout at the intersection of Pinckney Road (D-19) and Interstate 96 in 2008, using funds from a $1.2 million federal grant.

At the same time, D-19 will be rebuilt between I-96 and Pulford Street, also using funds from the federal grant. National Street is also scheduled to be extended in 2007 and 2008 to provide a loop road, allowing drivers to bypass Grand River Avenue.

Charles said roundabouts are catching on in Michigan because they are a cost-effective way to handle traffic. The county has five roundabouts — one in the city of Brighton, one in Brighton Township and three in Green Oak Township — and a sixth is planned for Hamburg Township.

Monday, January 22, 2007

The latest tax push - raise the beer tax

Here we go again. The AP Reports on the latest from Phil Power's "Center for Michigan", the left-wing counterpart to the libertarian-right Mackinac Center.

(AP) — State officials should consider raising the tax on beer for the first time since the 1960s as part of an effort to ease the state's budget problems, according to a think tank.

John Bebow, executive director of The Center for Michigan, a think tank in the Ann Arbor area, said that if the $6.30 a barrel tax had been indexed for inflation, it would be about $39 a barrel today.

Bebow said that tax would raise more than $270 million a year instead of $44 million. A can of beer would cost about 10 cents more. And he said that higher taxes on beer won't drive away business.

Let's have government pick more winners and losers. I have an idea. Let's tax millionaires like Mr. Power who want to raise taxes. We'll call it the "tax me more" tax. If multimillioners want to raise taxes so much, they should give the money to the government themselves and stop being so generous with other people's money.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

2008 - Hillary is in

The epidomy of the limosine leftists everywhere is in for 2008. Hillary Clinton is running for president. - From Bloomberg

Jan. 20 (Bloomberg) -- New York Senator Hillary Clinton today said she will seek to become the first female U.S. president, declaring ``I'm in. And I'm in to win.''

Clinton, 59, the wife of former President Bill Clinton, said on her Web site that she formed an exploratory presidential committee. She already leads in polls for the Democratic nomination, topping rivals such as former vice presidential candidate John Edwards and Illinois Senator Barack Obama.

While polls indicate that Clinton has the best shot yet for a woman to win the White House, she also faces opposition across the country. Her unfavorable ratings hover in the 40 percent range, well above Edwards or Obama. She also has to overcome her vote to support the unpopular war in Iraq and what she calls ``the scars'' from her failed health-care plan in the 1990s.

We already had one bad president named Clinton. We don't need another, especially one who would be worse than Jimmy Carter. Hillary shares Billy's distain for the Constitution with her militant anti 2nd amendment stance, voting for the Kennedy ammo ban, ugly gun ban, and gun show ban.

Her infamous health care plan would have raised taxes immensely and would make it a 15 year felony to go to a doctor not authorized by the iron heel of government. One woman complained about being pidgeonholed into a big government plan. The response. "It's time to put the common good, the national interest, ahead of individuals." How Soviet....

She was behind Bill Clinton's viscious railroading and malicious prosecution of Billy Dale.

She supported trade agreements harmful to Michigan. Billy signed NAFTA and GATT.

After Denise Rich gave big bucks to Hillary's campaign, Marc Rich was pardoned by Billy. Money talks, BS Walks.

There is good news about her run however. Hillary, Obama, Edwards, Biden, Dodd, Kucinich, Kerry, maybe Bill Richardson, and maybe Al Sharpton all get to destroy each other over the next two years. It will make things very interesting. I'll like to be there with a camera to see someone tell the truth about Hillary - the only way she got where she did is because of marrying Billy. She certainly didn't make it on her own.

Outside of Bill Clinton's work, she's just another two bit junior senator with only one term and one month to her credit. Step aside, junior.

Friday, January 19, 2007

GOP (and 7 Democrats) stop Leftist attack on 1st Amendment

Good news for the 1st Amendment. Pelosi's goal to shut up the grassroots hit a roadblock in the senate.

From the NRA:

The U.S. Senate has voted 55-43 to accept an amendment to S.A. 3, the "Legislative Transparency and Accountability Act", removing an onerous proposal that would have drastically limited the First Amendment rights of Americans in the political process. Offered by Sens. Robert Bennett (R-Utah) and Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), the amendment removed Section 220 that would have forced ordinary citizens to register with the federal government as "lobbyists," with all the attendant restrictions, costs, and penalties.

"The First Amendment protects an unqualified 'right of the people to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.' That is a sacred right of the American people." said NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris W. Cox. " Sec. 220 would have, for the first time in American history, severely regulated and restricted 'the voluntary efforts of members of the general public to communicate their own views on an issue to Federal officials.'

"On behalf of 4 million NRA members and tens of millions of gun owners, hunters, and sportsmen across the country, I want to thank Senators Robert Bennett and Mitch McConnell for their leadership in preserving political free speech for all," concluded Cox. "We are also grateful to the 53 other senators who voted for the Bennett-McConnell Amendment."

While this was no doubt a victory for NRA, gun owners, and freedom, enemies of the First and Second Amendments are alive and well in the 110th Congress, and no doubt will continue to assault our rights. Our thanks to all of you who contacted your U.S. Senators on this most important issue.

The Defenders of Freedom are as follows. Special thanks to John McCain for his surprising Yes vote. Voinovich, Conrad, Dorgan, and Bayh were major surprises as well.

Alexander (R-TN)
Allard (R-CO)
Baucus (D-MT)
Bayh (D-IN)
Bennett (R-UT)
Bond (R-MO)
Bunning (R-KY)
Burr (R-NC)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Coburn (R-OK)
Cochran (R-MS)
Coleman (R-MN)
Collins (R-ME)
Conrad (D-ND)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Craig (R-ID)
Crapo (R-ID)
DeMint (R-SC)
Dole (R-NC)
Domenici (R-NM)
Dorgan (D-ND)
Ensign (R-NV)
Enzi (R-WY)
Graham (R-SC)
Grassley (R-IA)
Gregg (R-NH)
Hagel (R-NE)
Hatch (R-UT)
Hutchison (R-TX)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Kyl (R-AZ)
Landrieu (D-LA)
Lott (R-MS)
Lugar (R-IN)
Martinez (R-FL)
McCain (R-AZ)
McConnell (R-KY)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Nelson (D-NE)
Roberts (R-KS)
Salazar (D-CO)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shelby (R-AL)
Smith (R-OR)
Snowe (R-ME)
Specter (R-PA)
Stevens (R-AK)
Sununu (R-NH)
Thomas (R-WY)
Thune (R-SD)
Vitter (R-LA)
Voinovich (R-OH)
Warner (R-VA)

The two non voters are Brownback (R-KS)and Johnson (D-SD). Johnson has a legit excuse with his health.

The Enemies of the 1st Amendment are as follows:
NAYs ---43
Akaka (D-HI)
Biden (D-DE)
Bingaman (D-NM)
Boxer (D-CA)
Brown (D-OH)
Byrd (D-WV)
Cantwell (D-WA)
Cardin (D-MD)
Carper (D-DE)
Casey (D-PA)
Clinton (D-NY)
Dodd (D-CT)
Durbin (D-IL)
Feingold (D-WI)
Feinstein (D-CA)
Harkin (D-IA)
Inouye (D-HI)
Kennedy (D-MA)
Kerry (D-MA)
Klobuchar (D-MN)
Kohl (D-WI)
Lautenberg (D-NJ)
Leahy (D-VT)
Levin (D-MI)
Lieberman (ID-CT)
Lincoln (D-AR)
McCaskill (D-MO)
Menendez (D-NJ)
Mikulski (D-MD)
Murray (D-WA)
Nelson (D-FL)
Obama (D-IL)
Pryor (D-AR)
Reed (D-RI)
Reid (D-NV)
Rockefeller (D-WV)
Sanders (I-VT)
Schumer (D-NY)
Stabenow (D-MI)
Tester (D-MT)
Webb (D-VA)
Whitehouse (D-RI)
Wyden (D-OR)

I expect better from Bob Casey, Jim Webb, and Jon Tester. This anti-freedom vote is not a good start for them. Levin and Stabenow consistantly vote anti-freedom and this vote is no surprise. Obama, Hillary, Kerry, Biden, and Dodd all show themselves to be as opposed to the 1st Amendment as they are opposed to the 2nd Amendment. Any of those five would be a disaster for freedom if elected president.

More Big Government Leftism from Democrats

The democrats in Flint and Oakland County want to stick their nose again where it doesn't belong.

From the Free Press

The trans fat battle, pitting what tastes good against what's good for you, arrived Thursday in Michigan.

Hoping to follow the lead of New York City, Oakland County Commissioner Marcia Gershenson wants to ban heart-unhealthy trans fat from more than 4,000 restaurants in the county by the end of 2008. Meanwhile, a state legislator from Flint said he wants to ban all Michigan restaurants from using trans fat.

Gershenson, D-Beverly Hills, said the government should protect its citizens' health. But she has personal reasons, too.

"I just lost my mother to a massive heart attack. She had a diet that was extraordinarily high in trans fat. And at some point, we decided that if this is what makes her happy, so be it," she said. "But it's a tremendous loss that I carry with me every day."

Her mother, who was 80, died last year.

State Rep. Lee Gonzales, a Flint Democrat, plans to introduce similar legislation in Lansing in the next few weeks. His diabetic son and overweight grandchild inspired his bills.

"Then one day near my house, I took a look at kids getting off the school bus and four of the kids were noticeably overweight," he said.


One good comment from Royal Oak of all places.

"We don't use trans fats here at all. But I just love it when the government sticks their noses into everything. It's very un-American," said Pete Mitchell, co-owner of the Athens Coney Island in Royal Oak. "Why do we need them telling us what to do? We're big boys, we'll figure it out."

This should be a business decision and not the decision of big government. We have enough Leftist red tape in this state as it is. If a restaurant wants to use trans fats, let them. Nobody is forcing someone to eat there. If they don't want to use them, that's fine too. This should be a market decision, and not a decision made by the leftist democrats who want to yet again, increase government.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Barack Hussein Obama breaks his word and runs for president

Barack Osama, I mean Obama is in for 2008.

The media's golden boy said he wasn't going to run - and boom! He's now in. Now can someone explain why this guy is so popular with the media and is considered presidential material? I can answer that. Superficial hype machine. He's the 2004 version of John Edwards.

This guy would be just another two bit senator if he was white. He'd be just another two bit senator if he was a Carol Mosely Braun (inner city) clone. Because he's a black man who talks and culturally acts "white", the guilty white liberals (Who sent Mosely Braun home in 1998 for the same reason Coleman Young was hated in Oakland County) can all support him so they can be "cool" and tell their latte drinking friend how "tolerant" they are and their support of "diversity". They are driving his hype machine. That's not the most PC thing to say, but it's the truth. Obama is he's fair game here, just like Granholm, Stabenow, Kennedy, Hanoi John Kerry, Hillary, Waxman, Schumer and all the white leftists.

Why the John Edwards reference? The hype machine. Edwards would have been just another two bit junior senator if he was from the North and not the South. The democrats ran him in order to contest the South after only ONE term. Although there IS one difference between the two. At least Edwards is less afraid of expressing where he stands on the issues this year. Obama is all platitudes so far. With his voting record, I can't blame the guy.

Barack Obama has ten years of political experience, all of them as a backbencher. He spent eight years as a State Senator and has served two years as US Senator easily beating Alan Keyes, a carpetbagging Marylander who moved to Illinois to replace candidate Jack Ryan was caught in a minor scandal. He's lost one election, to Bobby Rush in a 2000 primary due to "not being in the district long enough to see what is really going on." After that, he bid his time until Peter Fitzgerald retired in 2004 and took the open seat in a tough democrat primary before defeating Keyes. Is a 8 year state senator with two years of US senate experience and no executive experience enough to be president?

Now, here's his voting record - which is my major problem with this joker.

On Taxes - He voted against making permanent the repeal of the state's 5 percent sales tax on gasoline. (2000) Way to be for the "workin' man" Obama.

On Abortion - He voted against restrictions on public funding of abortion. (2000) Not only is Barack Obama pro-abortion, he wants us to pay for it.

And then, there's the 2nd amendment. Like most Chicago politicians like Boss Daley and Rod Blagojevich, Obama spits on the Constitution with these votes.

"Voted against letting people argue self-defense in court if charged with violating local weapons bans by using a gun in their home. (2004)"

This should be broadcasted to every single home in the country.

""Voted to let retired police and military police carry concealed weapons. (2004) ""

Now this shows that he supports a caste system. Government can carry firearms, but us little people can't. That's the mentality of the anti-constitution crowd. This STALINIST must be defeated.

""Unsuccessfully sponsored limit of one handgun purchase per month. (2000)""

Another anti-freedom measure. That's a lot in only eight years.

He also voted to ban .30-30 and all centerfire ammunition as a US senator. He is also on the Joyce Foundation's board of directors. They fund organizations that support total bans on firearms. Most gun grabber work starts from that organization.

It's time to send this anti-freedom leftist back to Boss Daley land. We don't need Chicago's statism nationwide. He'll get no special breaks from here.

Monday, January 15, 2007

McCain finishes 1st in "unacceptable" rating - in Arizona

Sonora Alliance
First Choice:
1 Hunter 96
2 Romney 82
3 Gingrich 53
4 McCain 50
5 Rice 27
6 Tancredo 24
7 Giuliani 22
8 Brownback 14
9 Huckabee 10
10 Hagel 2
11 Barbour 1
12 Pataki 0
Unacceptable Presidential Candidates:
1 McCain 282
2 Hagel 272
3 Pataki 260
4 Giuliani 213
5 Barbour 113
6 Brownback 108
6 Huckabee 108
7 Rice 91
8 Tancredo 85
9 Gingrich 81
10 Hunter 71
11 Romney 65
Acceptable Presidential Candidates:
1 Rice 269
2 Gingrich 265
3 Romney 239
4 Tancredo 219
5 Barbour 182
6 Brownback 178
7 Huckabee 167
7 Hunter 167
8 Giuliani 157
9 McCain 89
10 Pataki 70
11 Hagel 28
Republicans lost last November because:
Primary Reason Iraq 136
Secondary Reason Spending 115
Tertiary Reason Too Lenient on Immigration 94

Gas Tax increase? Hell No!

From the Argus

A coalition of business, labor, local government and transportation organizations are gearing up for a push to find more money for Michigan's roads in 2007, possibly from an increase in the gasoline tax.

The group hasn't settled on a concrete proposal, but one idea is to raise the per-gallon gas tax, currently at 19 cents, 9 cents over the next three years, or 3 cents per year.

I think there needs to be a "tax me more" fund - paid for by all the people who want to be generous with other people's money. We already have one of the higher gas prices in the country.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Congress kept away from districts - spending more time in beltway

From the AP

WASHINGTON (AP) — The five-day workweek, an idea alien to congressional culture in recent years, is about to make a comeback. "We are going to work longer hours, we are going to work full weeks, we are going to have votes on Mondays and Fridays," new Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., advised his colleagues at the opening of the new session on Jan. 4.

Other Americans, from teachers to police officers to factory workers, put in five days a week on the job, Reid said. "Shouldn't we here in Washington, where we do our business in this laboratory we call the Senate, do the same?"

No. Part of the business is done at home. One of the biggest problems we have is politicians spending too much time in the beltway away from their districts. Part of a representative's job is to spend time here in the district, away from the poisonous atmosphere that is DC.

The other problem is that the longer Congress is in session, the better opprotunity of a bad law passing that screws over our country.

Friday, January 12, 2007

2008 - Tom Tancredo is IN

Draft Tancredo blog

I saw the blurb on Redstate I just talked to a friend of mine who knows people on Tancredo's campaign for confirmation. Tancredo is forming an exploratory committee. He's in.

Expect the immigration issue to be white hot in 2008 - and I wouldn't be surprised to see outsourcing, fiscal issues and trade issues heat up as well.

More on Gilmore

Another intersting post on Gilmore from a Virginia Blog - Renaissance Ruminations.

Frank Atkinson wrote Virginia in the Vanguard with more than a passing reference to anticipated presidential candidacies by Virginians. I think that at this time last year everyone expected there would be a Virginian running for president in 2008. I don’t reckon many thought it would be Jim Gilmore.

For those tuning in late, James S. Gilmore III is a past two term Commonwealth’s Attorney of Henrico County, Attorney General of Virginia, Governor of Virginia, Chairman of the Republican National Committee, and chairman of the Gilmore Commission on Terrorism…and now he wants the Republican nomination for President in 2008.

The question to consider is whether Gilmore is the Prince of the Poseur? Is he a legitimate candidate for the nomination or is he some political hack who cannot resist a chance to get back in the game?

At first I scoffed at the Gilmore idea. But upon reflection, I think the Gilmore candidacy is a crossroads moment for the Republican Party. How his candidacy works, and if it works, will address important questions facing the GOP and the nominating process for both parties.

That Gilmore is legitimately in the game at all is the result of some luck. VP Dick Cheney would normally be the heir presumptive, but Cheney is not running in 2008 and first said so about 3 seconds after he was sworn into office in 2001. The absence of a clear front runner opens up the field to about anyone who meets the constitutional requirements. Gilmore does more than that, and offers an interesting combination of assets and liabilities.

Determination in all things

Beyond the resume items, Gilmore is driven and ruthless in pursuit of any goal. He is a blue collar guy who has regularly had to fight the uphill struggle to get where he wants to go-and has made the fight with energy and vigor.

This quality is seen in how he got into law school. As the story is told in the WaPo, Gilmore was accepted at TC Williams at the University of Richmond but wait listed at his first choice, UVa. He enrolled at TCW, began classes, then went up to Charlottesville just the day prior to or the day of classes starting. He sat in the dean’s office all that day in case a spot opened in the incoming class. A spot did come through from someone who chose to go elsewhere. Gilmore was there and ready to go-even though he was not necessarily the next on the wait list-and got the spot. He dropped from TCW, enrolled at and ultimately received his JD from UVa. The man is persistence personified.

The same persistence is seen in his candidacy for AG. When he announced in 1993, there was some scoffing in certain quarters. The idea of a local constitutional office holder running for statewide office without time in the General Assembly was not the norm, especially when the opposition was a veteran member of the House of Delegates. Nonetheless Gilmore won the nomination and went on to victory in November.


The rest is at the site. I recommend it.

2008 - Big News - Ron Paul is IN

The Barry Goldwater of 2008?

Ron Paul is in. Ron Paul is a libertarian republican and has an extremely large grassroots following - enough to make things very interesting in 2008. The top GOP brass hates his guts, but the voters don't as he wins year after year in his district, even when it wasn't republican leaning. (He replaced a democrat)

He brings a lot of things to the race and has an interesting political philosophy on his views. His grass roots support across the country, and on the internet could make him a threat to the hyped candidates if there is a strong turnout.

He's pro-2nd amendment and pro-life. He has a non-interventionalist foreign policy - strongly anti-war and also against the UN. He opposes NAFTA/GATT and other foreign treaties. He is against capital punishment.

He's the most fiscal conservative rep in the house. He voted against No Child Left Behind. He's also against pork barrell spending and wants to get rid of the income tax and most cabinent departments.

From the AP (linked above):

Ron Paul, the iconoclastic nine-term congressman from southeast Texas, took the first step Thursday toward launching a second presidential bid in 2008, this time as a Republican.

Paul filed incorporation papers in Texas on Thursday to create a presidential exploratory committee that allows him and his supporters to collect money on behalf of his bid. This will be Paul's second try for the White House; he was the Libertarian nominee for president in 1988.

Kent Snyder, the chairman of Paul's exploratory committee and a former staffer on Paul's Libertarian campaign, said the congressman knows he's a long shot.

"There's no question that it's an uphill battle, and that Dr. Paul is an underdog," Snyder said. "But we think it's well worth doing and we'll let the voters decide."

Paul, of Surfside Beach, acknowledges that the national GOP has never fully embraced him despite his nine terms in office under its banner. He gets little money from the GOP's large traditional donors, but benefits from individual conservative and Libertarian donors outside Texas. He bills himself as "The Taxpayers' Best Friend," and is routinely ranked either first or second in the House of Representatives by the National Taxpayers Union, a national group advocating low taxes and limited government.

He describes himself as a lifelong Libertarian running as a Republican.

Ron Paul is one of my favorite congressmen. I don't always agree with him, but I agree more often than not. He always takes a principled stance on issues and sticks to them, even when it isn't the most "political' thing to do. We had 400 reps like that, this country would be in much better shape.

Detroit News rips Granholm's pro-tax panel

It says much of what I've been saying. It's a good read and says it better than I did.

Spineless governor buys cover for raising taxes

If there was any doubt that Gov. Jennifer Granholm intends to raise taxes on Michigan residents, it disappeared when she appointed a commission of tax sympathizers to solve the state's budget mess.

Former Govs. William Milliken, a Republican, and Jim Blanchard, a Democrat, will head the Emergency Financial Advisory Panel, made up mostly of former politicians and bureaucrats, nearly all of whom have expressed sympathy in the past for higher taxes.


Higher taxes would make things worse for everyone in Michigan, except for the governor, who would avoid having to make the tough choices and coming up with the bold ideas she's promised in two election campaigns but hasn't delivered.

Appointing Milliken and Blanchard is laughable. Both ex-governors confronted budget problems and both solved them with tax hikes, among other moves. On Milliken's watch in the 1970s, once the state ran out of accounting gimmicks, he turned to a temporary increase in the income tax.

Blanchard convened a commission early in his tenure in 1983, which suggested a tax hike. He pushed a 38 percent hike in the state income tax rate through a Democratic Legislature. As a result, more than a dozen recalls against lawmakers were started, some resigned, and two lost recall elections, turning the state Senate over to the Republicans.

Most of the other panel members are on record as favoring tax hikes over further spending cuts.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Granholm creates panel of political hacks - pushes for tax increase

Granholm creates a panel of government hacks for the tax replacement. We have leading the way Bill "RINO" Milliken, the creator of the SBT. We have Jim "38% increase" Blanchard. We have Joe Schwarz who ran on tax increases in 2002, and we also have Frank Kelley, the most overrated AG in state history. Where is the private sector represented here? The panel is made up of the jokers who messed things up in the first place. Milliken and Blanchard's terms were made up of "Last one out of this state, please turn out the lights."

From the Free Press

Gov. Jennifer Granholm announced Wednesday the formation of a special commission of public sector experts, led by a pair of former governors, to advise her on how to remedy the state's dismal financial situation.

Some of the governor's critics said the makeup of the group indicates Granholm is looking for political cover for proposing a tax increase.

Ex-Govs. William Milliken and James Blanchard will co-chair the Emergency Financial Advisory Panel, which Granholm asked to come up with ideas to address the growing imbalance between state spending and income


David Littmann, senior economist at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, an advocate of limited government, said the panel's composition almost certainly guarantees it will recommend more taxes, more government spending and more borrowing.

"These are the people who presided over Michigan's economic decline," Littmann said. "The probability they will come up with something creative is as close to zero as you can get."

Littman is right. Considering that I don't have a lot of confidence in the state house or state senate to stop Granholm's tax plan, we better get the petitions ready to go. Else, this state and our wallets are in for a professional arse kicking.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

President Bush's Iraq Speech

Bush: Good evening. Tonight in Iraq, the Armed Forces of the United States are engaged in a struggle that will determine the direction of the global War on Terror — and our safety here at home. The new strategy I outline tonight will change America's course in Iraq, and help us succeed in the fight against terror.

When I addressed you just over a year ago, nearly 12 million Iraqis had cast their ballots for a unified and democratic nation. The elections of 2005 were a stunning achievement. We thought that these elections would bring the Iraqis together — and that as we trained Iraqi security forces, we could accomplish our mission with fewer American troops.

But in 2006, the opposite happened. The violence in Iraq - particularly in Baghdad — overwhelmed the political gains the Iraqis had made. Al Qaeda terrorists and Sunni insurgents recognized the mortal danger that Iraq's elections posed for their cause. And they responded with outrageous acts of murder aimed at innocent Iraqis. They blew up one of the holiest shrines in Shia Islam — the Golden Mosque of Samarra — in a calculated effort to provoke Iraq's Shia population to retaliate. Their strategy worked. Radical Shia elements, some supported by Iran, formed death squads. And the result was a vicious cycle of sectarian violence that continues today.

Bush Says Failure in Iraq Would Be Disaster for U.S. Official: Bush to Admit Iraq Mistakes Democrats Mull Votes to Oppose Bush Iraq Plan Eye on '08: Candidates Tie Their Fortunes to Iraq's Pelosi's Statements on Troop Levels Have Shifted as Iraq War Draws On Officials: Troop Surge in Iraq to Begin This Month Democrats Seek to Wield Budget Hammer on Iraq Policy The situation in Iraq is unacceptable to the American people — and it is unacceptable to me. Our troops in Iraq have fought bravely. They have done everything we have asked them to do. Where mistakes have been made, the responsibility rests with me.

It is clear that we need to change our strategy in Iraq. So my national security team, military commanders, and diplomats conducted a comprehensive review. We consulted Members of Congress from both parties, allies abroad, and distinguished outside experts. We benefited from the thoughtful recommendations of the Iraq Study Group — a bipartisan panel led by former Secretary of State James Baker and former Congressman Lee Hamilton. In our discussions, we all agreed that there is no magic formula for success in Iraq. And one message came through loud and clear: Failure in Iraq would be a disaster for the United States.

The consequences of failure are clear: Radical Islamic extremists would grow in strength and gain new recruits. They would be in a better position to topple moderate governments, create chaos in the region, and use oil revenues to fund their ambitions. Iran would be emboldened in its pursuit of nuclear weapons. Our enemies would have a safe haven from which to plan and launch attacks on the American people. On September the 11th, 2001, we saw what a refuge for extremists on the other side of the world could bring to the streets of our own cities. For the safety of our people, America must succeed in Iraq.

The most urgent priority for success in Iraq is security, especially in Baghdad. Eighty percent of Iraq's sectarian violence occurs within 30 miles of the capital. This violence is splitting Baghdad into sectarian enclaves, and shaking the confidence of all Iraqis. Only the Iraqis can end the sectarian violence and secure their people. And their government has put forward an aggressive plan to do it.

Our past efforts to secure Baghdad failed for two principal reasons: There were not enough Iraqi and American troops to secure neighborhoods that had been cleared of terrorists and insurgents. And there were too many restrictions on the troops we did have. Our military commanders reviewed the new Iraqi plan to ensure that it addressed these mistakes. They report that it does. They also report that this plan can work.

Let me explain the main elements of this effort: The Iraqi government will appoint a military commander and two deputy commanders for their capital. The Iraqi government will deploy Iraqi Army and National Police brigades across Baghdad's nine districts. When these forces are fully deployed, there will be 18 Iraqi Army and National Police brigades committed to this effort — along with local police. These Iraqi forces will operate from local police stations — conducting patrols, setting up checkpoints, and going door-to-door to gain the trust of Baghdad residents.

This is a strong commitment. But for it to succeed, our commanders say the Iraqis will need our help. So America will change our strategy to help the Iraqis carry out their campaign to put down sectarian violence - and bring security to the people of Baghdad. This will require increasing American force levels. So I have committed more than 20,000 additional American troops to Iraq. The vast majority of them — five brigades — will be deployed to Baghdad. These troops will work alongside Iraqi units and be embedded in their formations. Our troops will have a well-defined mission: to help Iraqis clear and secure neighborhoods, to help them protect the local population, and to help ensure that the Iraqi forces left behind are capable of providing the security that Baghdad needs.

Many listening tonight will ask why this effort will succeed when previous operations to secure Baghdad did not. Here are the differences: In earlier operations, Iraqi and American forces cleared many neighborhoods of terrorists and insurgents — but when our forces moved on to other targets, the killers returned. This time, we will have the force levels we need to hold the areas that have been cleared. In earlier operations, political and sectarian interference prevented Iraqi and American forces from going into neighborhoods that are home to those fueling the sectarian violence. This time, Iraqi and American forces will have a green light to enter these neighborhoods — and Prime Minister Maliki has pledged that political or sectarian interference will not be tolerated.

I have made it clear to the Prime Minister and Iraq's other leaders that America's commitment is not open-ended. If the Iraqi government does not follow through on its promises, it will lose the support of the American people — and it will lose the support of the Iraqi people. Now is the time to act. The Prime Minister understands this. Here is what he told his people just last week: "The Baghdad security plan will not provide a safe haven for any outlaws, regardless of [their] sectarian or political affiliation."

This new strategy will not yield an immediate end to suicide bombings, assassinations, or IED attacks. Our enemies in Iraq will make every effort to ensure that our television screens are filled with images of death and suffering. Yet over time, we can expect to see Iraqi troops chasing down murderers, fewer brazen acts of terror, and growing trust and cooperation from Baghdad's residents. When this happens, daily life will improve, Iraqis will gain confidence in their leaders, and the government will have the breathing space it needs to make progress in other critical areas. Most of Iraq's Sunni and Shia want to live together in peace — and reducing the violence in Baghdad will help make reconciliation possible.

A successful strategy for Iraq goes beyond military operations. Ordinary Iraqi citizens must see that military operations are accompanied by visible improvements in their neighborhoods and communities. So America will hold the Iraqi government to the benchmarks it has announced.

To establish its authority, the Iraqi government plans to take responsibility for security in all of Iraq's provinces by November. To give every Iraqi citizen a stake in the country's economy, Iraq will pass legislation to share oil revenues among all Iraqis. To show that it is committed to delivering a better life, the Iraqi government will spend 10 billion dollars of its own money on reconstruction and infrastructure projects that will create new jobs. To empower local leaders, Iraqis plan to hold provincial elections later this year. And to allow more Iraqis to re-enter their nation's political life, the government will reform de-Baathification laws — and establish a fair process for considering amendments to Iraq's constitution.

America will change our approach to help the Iraqi government as it works to meet these benchmarks. In keeping with the recommendations of the Iraq Study Group, we will increase the embedding of American advisers in Iraqi Army units — and partner a Coalition brigade with every Iraqi Army division. We will help the Iraqis build a larger and better-equipped Army — and we will accelerate the training of Iraqi forces, which remains the essential U.S. security mission in Iraq. We will give our commanders and civilians greater flexibility to spend funds for economic assistance. We will double the number of Provincial Reconstruction Teams. These teams bring together military and civilian experts to help local Iraqi communities pursue reconciliation, strengthen moderates, and speed the transition to Iraqi self reliance. And Secretary Rice will soon appoint a reconstruction coordinator in Baghdad to ensure better results for economic assistance being spent in Iraq.

As we make these changes, we will continue to pursue Al Qaeda and foreign fighters. Al Qaeda is still active in Iraq. Its home base is Anbar Province. Al Qaeda has helped make Anbar the most violent area of Iraq outside the capital. A captured Al Qaeda document describes the terrorists' plan to infiltrate and seize control of the province. This would bring al Qaeda closer to its goals of taking down Iraq's democracy, building a radical Islamic empire, and launching new attacks on the United States at home and abroad.

Our military forces in Anbar are killing and capturing Al Qaeda leaders — and protecting the local population. Recently, local tribal leaders have begun to show their willingness to take on Al Qaeda. As a result, our commanders believe we have an opportunity to deal a serious blow to the terrorists. So I have given orders to increase American forces in Anbar Province by 4,000 troops. These troops will work with Iraqi and tribal forces to step up the pressure on the terrorists. America's men and women in uniform took away Al Qaeda's safe haven in Afghanistan — and we will not allow them to re-establish it in Iraq.

Succeeding in Iraq also requires defending its territorial integrity — and stabilizing the region in the face of the extremist challenge. This begins with addressing Iran and Syria. These two regimes are allowing terrorists and insurgents to use their territory to move in and out of Iraq. Iran is providing material support for attacks on American troops. We will disrupt the attacks on our forces. We will interrupt the flow of support from Iran and Syria. And we will seek out and destroy the networks providing advanced weaponry and training to our enemies in Iraq.

We are also taking other steps to bolster the security of Iraq and protect American interests in the Middle East. I recently ordered the deployment of an additional carrier strike group to the region. We will expand intelligence sharing — and deploy Patriot air defense systems to reassure our friends and allies. We will work with the governments of Turkey and Iraq to help them resolve problems along their border. And we will work with others to prevent Iran from gaining nuclear weapons and dominating the region.

We will use America's full diplomatic resources to rally support for Iraq from nations throughout the Middle East. Countries like Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, and the Gulf States need to understand that an American defeat in Iraq would create a new sanctuary for extremists — and a strategic threat to their survival. These nations have a stake in a successful Iraq that is at peace with its neighbors — and they must step up their support for Iraq's unity government. We endorse the Iraqi government's call to finalize an International Compact that will bring new economic assistance in exchange for greater economic reform. And on Friday, Secretary Rice will leave for the region — to build support for Iraq, and continue the urgent diplomacy required to help bring peace to the Middle East.

The challenge playing out across the broader Middle East is more than a military conflict. It is the decisive ideological struggle of our time. On one side are those who believe in freedom and moderation. On the other side are extremists who kill the innocent, and have declared their intention to destroy our way of life. In the long run, the most realistic way to protect the American people is to provide a hopeful alternative to the hateful ideology of the enemy — by advancing liberty across a troubled region. It is in the interests of the United States to stand with the brave men and women who are risking their lives to claim their freedom - and help them as they work to raise up just and hopeful societies across the Middle East.

From Afghanistan to Lebanon to the Palestinian Territories, millions of ordinary people are sick of the violence, and want a future of peace and opportunity for their children. And they are looking at Iraq. They want to know: Will America withdraw and yield the future of that country to the extremists — or will we stand with the Iraqis who have made the choice for freedom?

The changes I have outlined tonight are aimed at ensuring the survival of a young democracy that is fighting for its life in a part of the world of enormous importance to American security. Let me be clear: The terrorists and insurgents in Iraq are without conscience, and they will make the year ahead bloody and violent. Even if our new strategy works exactly as planned, deadly acts of violence will continue — and we must expect more Iraqi and American casualties. The question is whether our new strategy will bring us closer to success. I believe that it will.

Victory will not look like the ones our fathers and grandfathers achieved. There will be no surrender ceremony on the deck of a battleship. But victory in Iraq will bring something new in the Arab world — a functioning democracy that polices its territory, upholds the rule of law, respects fundamental human liberties, and answers to its people. A democratic Iraq will not be perfect. But it will be a country that fights terrorists instead of harboring them — and it will help bring a future of peace and security for our children and grandchildren.

Our new approach comes after consultations with Congress about the different courses we could take in Iraq. Many are concerned that the Iraqis are becoming too dependent on the United States — and therefore, our policy should focus on protecting Iraq's borders and hunting down Al Qaeda. Their solution is to scale back America's efforts in Baghdad — or announce the phased withdrawal of our combat forces. We carefully considered these proposals. And we concluded that to step back now would force a collapse of the Iraqi government, tear that country apart, and result in mass killings on an unimaginable scale. Such a scenario would result in our troops being forced to stay in Iraq even longer, and confront an enemy that is even more lethal. If we increase our support at this crucial moment, and help the Iraqis break the current cycle of violence, we can hasten the day our troops begin coming home.

In the days ahead, my national security team will fully brief Congress on our new strategy. If Members have improvements that can be made, we will make them. If circumstances change, we will adjust. Honorable people have different views, and they will voice their criticisms. It is fair to hold our views up to scrutiny. And all involved have a responsibility to explain how the path they propose would be more likely to succeed.

Acting on the good advice of Senator Joe Lieberman and other key members of Congress, we will form a new, bipartisan working group that will help us come together across party lines to win the war on terror. This group will meet regularly with me and my Administration, and it will help strengthen our relationship with Congress. We can begin by working together to increase the size of the active Army and Marine Corps, so that America has the Armed Forces we need for the 21st century. We also need to examine ways to mobilize talented American civilians to deploy overseas — where they can help build democratic institutions in communities and nations recovering from war and tyranny.

In these dangerous times, the United States is blessed to have extraordinary and selfless men and women willing to step forward and defend us. These young Americans understand that our cause in Iraq is noble and necessary - and that the advance of freedom is the calling of our time. They serve far from their families, who make the quiet sacrifices of lonely holidays and empty chairs at the dinner table. They have watched their comrades give their lives to ensure our liberty. We mourn the loss of every fallen American - and we owe it to them to build a future worthy of their sacrifice.

Fellow citizens: The year ahead will demand more patience, sacrifice, and resolve. It can be tempting to think that America can put aside the burdens of freedom. Yet times of testing reveal the character of a Nation. And throughout our history, Americans have always defied the pessimists and seen our faith in freedom redeemed. Now America is engaged in a new struggle that will set the course for a new century. We can and we will prevail.

We go forward with trust that the Author of Liberty will guide us through these trying hours. Thank you and good night.

Who is Jim Gilmore?

One of the more intriging candidates running this year is former Virginia Governor Jim Gilmore. All I really knew about him is that he was against Virginia's car tax, a fiscal conservative, and a former governor term limited out. (Virginia allows only one term, although a former governor may run for a 2nd term after a four year hiatus). Governors become presidents, so I wanted to take a closer look at his record.

Draft Gilmore Site - I found this site when looking for some information on Jim Gilmore. This is a good start.

He's running on national security (Virginia's 9/11 recovery was on his watch), immigration reform, low taxes, and pork busting. I'd need to know more his record before making any endorsements, but if it is nearly as good as the site advertises, I could see myself voting for him if Mark Sanford or Mike Pence doesn't run.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Howell Schools has open board seat

From the Argus

Things should heat up soon. Ted Parsons is stepping down from the Howell School Board. That means at least one of the two seats is open.

Ted Parsons, Jr., a member of the Howell Public Schools Board of Education for 12 years, announced Monday that he will not run for the board again in May, and will leave office when his term expires in June.

Parsons said he will move out of the district to cut down on his commute. He has been working as an executive of a credit union in Battle Creek since July 2005.

Board President Susan Drazic thanked him for his service.

"Twelve years is a long time to sit up here and serve this community," she said.

The seat held by Jeannine Pratt also is up for election in May.

Nominating petitions and other necessary paperwork are available at the county clerk's office in the historical Livingston County Courthouse. The deadline for filing as a candidate is 4 p.m. Feb. 13.

Also, apparently things heated up at the last Howell Schools meeting - this time over the Bible being taught in school as literature.

People from the statewide chapters of the groups American Atheists, Americans United for the Separation of Church and State and the American Family Association gave their thoughts on whether the Bible has a place in public schools, as did several parents of students in the Howell schools

We'll see what affect this has on the elections, if any. Another rumor I heard is that the countywide enhancement millage may soon be making a comeback as well, so let's not forget the fiscal and tax issues either when we pick our school board candidates.

(ADDING ON) - While I'm not against the Bible being taught in school - either as literature or as part of a religion class - one thing that needs to be considered, especially in this economy is the cost for this class. The top priorities in public schools need to be the skills necessary to get our students ready for the future - skills to help them pass the ACT or SAT. Math, English, Hard Sciences, History. Not "diversity". Not religion (not that either is a bad thing - it's not)

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Give credit where it's due

Nobody except one person (Bob Emerson I believe) wanted to be on the wrong side of this one. Kudos to Scott Hummel for taking the lead, and Chris Ward, Joe Hune, Valde Garcia, and Granholm for getting this through.

NRA gets a victory

Fairfax, VA - Today, Governor Jennifer Granholm signed into law a two-bill package, backed by the National Rifle Association (NRA), making the “Emergency Powers Protection Act” the law of the land in Michigan (HB 6363 and HB 6364). The new laws prevent local governments from confiscating lawfully owned firearms during declared states of emergency, as witnessed in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.

“The Second Amendment achieved an historic triumph in Michigan today,” said Chris W. Cox, NRA’s chief lobbyist. “With this signing into law of Michigan’s ‘Emergency Powers Protection Act’, law-abiding Michiganders can rest assured they and their Constitutional freedoms will not suffer the same chaotic fate as those citizens of New Orleans in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. NRA promised to fight to ensure the dismantling of the Second Amendment and the gun confiscations we saw in New Orleans is never repeated anywhere in America, and we are devoted to fulfilling our promise.”

In the first year since Hurricane Katrina, state legislatures in Alaska, Idaho, Florida, Kentucky, Mississippi, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Virginia and Louisiana passed measures that echo the spirit of Michigan’s “Emergency Powers Protection Act”.

Last fall, the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate passed a similar federal bill with broad, bipartisan support, which President Bush signed in October 2006.

In December 2006, the Michigan bills received overwhelming, bipartisan support in both chambers, passing 37-1 in the State Senate and unanimously in the State House, 105-0.

“On behalf of thousands of NRA members in Michigan, I want to thank State Rep. Scott Hummel for his leadership and commitment to bringing the “Emergency Powers Protection Act” to passage in both chambers of the legislature. I also want to thank Michigan’s Governor, Jennifer Granholm, for signing this fundamental legislation into law,” concluded Cox.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

School Board 07

The Argus posted an article about the school board races.

paperwork ready for the county clerk in order to become candidates.
Joan Runyan, Livingston County elections coordinator, announced this week she now has signature petitions and other nominating materials available for potential candidates.

The deadline for submitting candidate paperwork is 4 p.m. Feb. 13.

It could be interesting or uneventful, since who knows who is going to run this year in the district. I personally expect big battles in Brighton, Hartland, and Howell, and less of a battle in Pinckney due to the number of openings there. Fowlerville is usually more quiet. That said, anything can happen. The seats that are up are:

Miles Vieau (Good guy)
Dawn Boss (moved out of the district - open)

Jeannine Pratt (no relation to Jim Pratt)
Ted Parsons

Anne Colone
Mike Hendy
Michelle Crampo (partial term)

Michael Brown
Elaine Esch

Elsie McPherson-Brown

Will any of them be contested? We'll find out February 13 at the latest.

I talked to Joan Runyan yesterday, who runs the elections in Livingston County. We got a surprise belated Christmas present for us in the Whitmore Lake district. We got three tax questions (including a millage) on the February ballot (FEBRUARY 26). It was filed just before Christmas. I'll admit to being caught offguard a bit there as I try and keep up on this stuff. With my current finances - I'm voting no.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Pelosi flips, shuts out GOP

I'm shocked at Pelosi's flip-flop here. I'm also shocked that I see deer crossing roads in Livingston County and I'm shocked that the Lions had another losing season under Matt Millen. This isn't a complaint since I wouldn't expect anything less from the old guard's comeback. It's the same old song and dance controlling congress. Most of these reps have been around for 20-30 years. Henry "ban everything" Waxman, Ted Kennedy, Robert Byrd, Pat Leahy, Joe Biden, Chris Dodd, Pete Stark, George Miller, John Conyers, etc.

From the Washington Post.

Democrats To Start Without GOP Input
As they prepare to take control of Congress this week and face up to campaign pledges to restore bipartisanship and openness, Democrats are planning to largely sideline Republicans from the first burst of lawmaking.

House Democrats intend to pass a raft of popular measures as part of their well-publicized plan for the first 100 hours. They include tightening ethics rules for lawmakers, raising the minimum wage, allowing more research on stem cells and cutting interest rates on student loans.

They are doing the same thing Tom Foley did. Too bad Pelosi isn't from a swing area like Spokane, but from San Francisco which would vote for Joe Stalin.

If the Republicans want the house back, they need to make sure the dems do not lead and that they DO lead. The GOP needs to LEAD, and make the dems follow. They have the ability to do that, just as the dems in the minority (due mostly to the idiots in the senate) derailed what the GOP did. This takes hardball and guts, and is the same type of thing the dems to against the GOP.

The GOP needs to do this.
1. Come up with strong alternative plans to Pelosi's. The alternatives must be solid have have less government principles. Going away from that hurt us.
2. Find the snakes in Pelosi's plan, and expose it.
3. Split the "conservative dems" away from Pelosi. If that doesn't work - fillibuster the dems plans in the senate unless there is compromise. Put pressure on Jim Webb and Jon Tester constantly for the next six years. Put pressure on the House Freshmen who won in districts they normally wouldn't have in regular elections. The three in Indiana, the Kentucky seat, Western North Carolina, Topeka Kansas, two or three of the Pennsylvania seats, The New Hampshire coastal seat (The other one was historically dem and flipped back), and those areas.
4. Have Bush go on offense and announce he'll sign the alternative plan, but not Pelosi's for the reasons given.
5. Bush and the GOP need to do a Clinton and take credit for all the reforms - but unlike Clinton's taking credit for GOP reforms, the reforms need to really be GOP reforms.

Time to play hardball.

I haven't seen the dems plans yet, but I expect a few snakes in the grass there (just like I would from a McCain plan) which would take some freedoms away - there always is one somewhere.

Monday, January 01, 2007

2007 - What's next?

Well, it's now a new year and there's no presidential or gubenatorial elections. That doesn't mean things aren't going to be interesting. They are going to probably heat up quickly.

In early February, we have the filing deadline for May elections. It's school board time again. Howell and Brighton have their school board elections at this time. It'll be interesting to see who runs. It'll also be interesting to see what the MEA, Love Group PAC, Concerned Taxpayers Group PAC, Livingston Taxpayers Association (Dave Hamilton's org), GOP, Democrats, and newsmedia do in this election. The Concerned Taxpayers Group set a good precedence in 2005 with the millage and in 2006 with its endorsement process. I hope we have some good candidates.

The preseason for 2008 will get pushed into high gear. We have the Iowa Straw Poll sometime in August. We'll have several announcements of running and who is in or out, as well as everybody who ever was anything or thinks they were anything making an endorsement.

The big event though either this August or September is the GOP's Mackinac Leadership Conference. Every two years, the GOP has a major conference up on Mackinac Island. There may be a straw poll there(hence, part of the reason McCain's people wanted Saul gone). There will also be several candidates there. In 05, we had Brownback, Romney, and Tommy Thompson. 07 should be much more active than 05 - and that was fairly active.

Most of the primary presidential season will likely be over before the end of the year - and down to 3-4 people at most. Who those will be? I have no idea. (Many thought in 1999 it would be Liddy Dole vs Hillary)

It should be a real interesting year.

Argus on Constitution Convention

I first posted Here and here on the proposal for a constitutional convention and recommendations of change to the state constitution. Citizens for Michigan updated their site.

From the Argus

Michigan voters in 2010 will decide whether the state’s constitution needs to be revamped. Other than amendments, the document has not been altered since 1963 when voters approved an updated version. In 1978 and again in 1994, Michiganians decided that a new constitutional convention was not necessary.


Other issues addressed by the group include collection of 1 mill statewide to help fund school building programs; a “pocket veto” for the governor; increases in lawmakers’ salaries; recall of local politicians, and more.

We think it’s good that the group has brought these issues to the public’s attention, even if we might not agree with all of its recommendations. It’s important that Michigan residents take a serious look at their constitution and all that it covers. We hope the Citizens for Michigan recommendations will help spark a statewide discussion of constitutional issues.

Then in 2010, state voters can make a well-informed decision about whether they want to make changes in the document that has guided our state since 1908

Most of the stuff mentioned is the same stuff I mentioned in the two previous posts. I do think that the public should be well informed on this. I also think that they don't want to mess with Headlee and face more tax increases either.