Friday, February 28, 2014

Updates (Hamburg, MI-12)

First - Hamburg - From the Argus

Hamburg Township residents in November would be asked to fund a 15-year, roughly $19.4 million road tax under a plan proposed by a committee of residents.
Hamburg’s Road Focus Group was formed in July to consider a millage to address crumbling county roads in the township after inaction in Lansing.
The proposal would levy 2 mills in the millage’s first five years, then 1 mill in years six through 15. The Board of Trustees would need to approve the proposal before it is put before voters.
The millage would be “pay as you go,” meaning it wouldn’t be levied if the Legislature or county officials approve plans to fix the roads, Township Supervisor Pat Hohl said.
“This is a lot of work, and if we go out to the voters, we want to go out with the best product the voters have a familiarity with, or have an education on, and they can make their mind up in November,” he said.

I was at one of the meetings. If Cunningham Lake and Bauer Road (Both which have portions in Hamburg Township) are not on the road list, then Protect Genoa Township Neighborhoods is going to stay out.

I respect how Pat Hohl and company are working the process here compared to Gary McCririe and Genoa Township. Genoa's push was "all or nothing" and "this is how it's going to be." It was soundly defeated and I know our postcard was much "loved" by the powers that be there.  Hamburg Township has focus groups of citizens that have their input into the decision which is still in the workds. It's an open process and I haven't seen any games being played here. I also respect how this is going to be a November 2014 ballot issue instead of an off year sneak job.

We'll see what happens. The issue here will be determined by its merits and demerits, not gamesmanship.

As for MI-12, as expected a Dingell has announced. It's John's wife Debbie who is a long time democrat party activists and former GM executive. There may be others that run for the dems as well out of Ann Arbor. Rebekah Warren, former NARAL boss and current State Senator in Ann Arbor is seriously considering a run.

Terry Bowman, head of Union Conservatives is likely a candidate for the Republicans. Terry's a good guy and the type of candidate here who can make inroads for our party, helping in our statewide campaigns.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Arrogant Threats from the Peters Campaign

From the Daily Caller:

Last week, The Washington Post began grumbling about an Americans for Prosperity (AFP) ad featuring Julie Boonstra, a woman with leukemia who was thrown into expensive uncertainty by Obamacare, with Greg Sargent lamenting the tragedy of its effectiveness and Glenn Kessler asking for more proof(BEDFORD: The Post is pretty worried about the people Obamacare hurts)
Then Rep. Gary Peters, who is the running for the U.S. Senate in Michigan, went all-in Friday, having his lawyers send a letter to a Michigan television station citing the Post in demanding that AFP provide more evidence that Obamacare is as terrible as it really is. Mr. Peters’ lawyers wrote that “Unlike federal candidates, independent political organizations” — and by extension, Ms. Boonstra — don’t have a “right to command use of broadcast facilities.” They clinched with a threat that airing the ad could “be cause for the loss of a station’s license.”
Big guns, Mr. Peters. Big guns.

Gary Peters showed he was a bully and wants to silence the ad with threats to the FCC license of the stations that air it. (Another reason to reduce the FCC's power to prevent signal interference only).  The letter is on the Americans for Prosperity website here.

Peters didn't give his counsel Marc Elias at Perkins Cole much to work with. This is a bluff letter for PR purposes. No attorney worth his salt should rely on newspaper "journalists" and editorialists when it comes to a legal cease and desist letter. They aren't expert witnesses. They do not have direct testimony that they can give. The Washington Post column was a political opinion. That's it.

The response to Peters and his attorneys should start with the word "Go", end in the word "yourself", and I'll let you fill in the rest.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Dale Rogers running again for HD-42

We now have a 3rd candidate in my district. Dale Rogers, who challenged Bill (no relation) in the 2012 primary, is now running for the open 42nd state rep district.

From the Argus

Novi High School teacher and Hamburg Township resident Dale Rogers is making his second run for the state House seat currently filled by state Rep. Bill Rogers, R-Genoa Township.
Dale Rogers — no relation to Bill Rogers — on Friday filed his paperwork for the Republican nomination for the 42nd District seat representing Brighton and the townships of Brighton, Genoa, Green Oak, Hamburg and Putnam in the House.
Dale Rogers said he hopes to provide an alternative Republican viewpoint from further-right GOP officials and candidates. He also ran for the seat in 2012.
Brighton Township Treasurer Lana Theis and Brighton Area Schools Board of Education member Nick Fiani are also running in for the seat in the the Aug. 5 GOP primary. A Democratic candidate for the House seat has yet to be announced.
Bill Rogers is term-limited, which means he must vacate the seat this year.

I don't know Dale well, although I met him a couple of times. He's a nice guy, and is not surprisingly running on education related issues.

The 2012 primary was one sided, but there's no incumbents this time. Lana Theis and Nick Fiani are also running for the open seat.With three people running, there is a choice in this election.

Nick Fiani web site

Dale Rogers web site

Lana Theis web site

MI-12 - Dingell Retiring


DETROIT - Michigan Rep. John Dingell, the longest-serving congressman in U.S. history, will announce his retirement on Monday.
Dingell is expected to formally announce his decision to not seek re-election during a luncheon in Southgate.
The 87-year-old democrat and Dean of the House of Representatives was first elected in 1955, filling the House seat vacated by his late father.
Dingell set the record for the longest-serving member last year when he hit 58 years of service. 

Many are cheering. I'm not. $20 says the replacement will be a lot worse. Dingell was an old school FDR type of labor democrat. I didn't agree with him on much, but at least he was generally (not always) pro-2nd Amendment and supportive of the auto industry. The replacement could very well be coming from the People's Republic of Ann Arbor.

This is a safe district for democrats.  There are several different parts of the district.

Dearborn/Downriver - They aren't exactly the same, but the same type of democrat does well. UAW and steelworker. Moderate on social issues. Populist. That's Dingell's base. About 396,000 people, mostly white ethnic.

Airport area (Partially) - A mix of downriver, government workers (Metro Airport), and a fairly large black population. That's also Dingell's base. Romulus, Wayne, Westland, and Inkster are in Conyers district. Dingell has Van Buren Twp, Belleville, Sumpter, and Huron Township.  About 58,000 in the district.  

Ypsilanti area - Actually more democrat than Ann Arbor. A mix of inner city, college town (EMU), and UAW. Dingell made some strong inroads here when running against Lynn Rivers, especially with the minorities. Ypsilanti (City and Township), Pittsfield Twp east of US-23. SE part of Superior Township (Willow Run). About 98,000 in the district.

Ann Arbor - City College of New York, West. A bit of east coast implanted on the Midwest, without the character. Go MSU. They tolerated Dingell, but he wasn't their favorite due to guns and his support of the automobile industry.  Mostly white with some Asians and a declining black population. Very strong green, gay rights, and feminist streak.  About 150,000.

In the Lynn Rivers vs John Dingell 2002 grudge match, the results were as follows.
Wayne County   - Dingell 31364, Rivers 11203
Monroe County - Dingell 14698, Rivers 3613
Washtenaw County - Dingell 11728, Rivers 26016
Within Washtenaw:
Ann Arbor - Rivers won 80-20
Milan (Walberg's District now) - Rivers won 55-45
Ypsi - Rivers won 63-37 (Dingell won black precincts)
Ann Arbor Twp - Rivers won 68-31
Augusta Twp (Walberg's district now) - Dingell won 55-45
Pittsfield Twp - Rivers won 63-37
Scio Twp - 11 votes for Rivers, 0 for Dingell (most was in Walberg's District then)
Superior Twp - Dingell won 51-49 (Willow Run)
York Twp (Walberg's District now) - Dingell won 57-42
Ypsilanti Twp - Rivers won 50-49

I think one of the reasons Dingell is retiring is due to downriver being back in his district. He's a Dearborn/Downriver guy and wants his replacement to be from there. I think Debbie Dingell may run. Chris Dingell (John's son), a Wayne County Judge was rumored long ago to be the successor intended for this seat. He's in the Trenton area in the district. He could run, but would have to give up a nice spot to do it. I expect either Debbie or Chris Dingell to run, but not both. 

The democrat bench is strong.
Lynn Rivers - Ex Congresscritter. Ann Arbor.
Alma Wheeler Smith - Ypsilanti/Ann Arbor. Ties to both.
Rebekah Warren, Liz Brater, Chris Kolb, - Ann Arbor current/former reps.
John Hiefje - Ann Arbor mayor.
David Rutledge - Ypsi state rep
George Darany, Paul or Ed Clemente, The Kandrevases, Hoon-Yung Hopgood, Ray Basham, - State Reps/Senate from Wayne County.  
The only Republican bench in this district is Pat Somerville, and I doubt he's giving up his far downriver state rep seat for this. Grosse Ile and Huron Township isn't going to carry a congressional district.

Some national folks have mentioned Pam Byrnes and Glenn Anderson. Pam Byrnes is from the Chelsea area. That's about as far from MI-12 than I am even though I'm in a different county. She's not going to carpetbag. Glenn Anderson is from Westland. That's not in the district, and his old territory in the state senate is Redford, Garden City, Westland, and Livonia. NO Chance. Scratch both of those names. They aren't going to be it.

I expect at least one Wayne County and one Washtenaw County candidate to run regardless of the wishes of the establishment in the other community. My guesses (and that's all they are) 

Alma Wheeler Smith, Liz Brater, and Rebekah Warren in that order.
Debbie Dingell, Chris Dingell, Ray Basham (Former State Senator) in that order. 

Personally, I hope both sides beat the tar out of each other and alienate the other side into staying home in November.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Byron Schools Election Tuesday - February 25th

Sinking Fund on the ballot.

From the Argus

Voters in portions of northern Livingston County will help decide the fate of a proposed Byron Area Schools millage in a Tuesday special election.
School district voters in Cohoctah, Conway and Deerfield townships will cast ballots.
The school district is seeking up to 3 mills over the next two years to create a sinking fund to finance repairs and construction on school buildings.
The millage translates to up to $150 a year for someone living in a home with a market value of $100,000.
The Livingston County clerk’s office reminds voters that their polling place for Tuesday’s election has been temporarily moved to Burns Township Hall, 10355 Bath Road.

This is the only election covering part of Livingston County. Most of the Byron School District is in Shiawassee County. 

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Time to limit the power of the executive branch

This is a post I started, but didn't finish awhile back. I originally titled this "Time to elect the federal AG" because it's long past time to separate the Attorney General from the Presidency due to conflicts of interest and corruption. I then thought about the 50+ year problem trend of powers being conceded to the increasingly totalitarian executive branch in general. It is enabled by Congress.  

Both parties have been guilty here.

The AG is a big example, but just one. The IRS selective auditing and selective scrutiny is another. The US attorney firings are an issue almost every presidency. The EPA has way too much power. A lot of these problems are regulations that bypass Congress - because Congress allows them to happen. Same goes for executive orders. This isn't just an Obama issue. While many on the right blame Obama for this and want him or at least his minions out of office, that is a slight part of the problem, not THE problem. The problem will be there long after Obama goes, whether he's replaced by Hillary, Chris Christie, Mark Warner, Rand Paul, or someone else. The problem is the structure to begin with. That's the dragon that needs to be slain.

Congress gave the presidency most of these powers. That is the problem in the first place. Part of it is due to laziness. They don't want to take too many tough votes, so they give broad powers to the executive which can take the blame or heat, while Congress pats themselves on the back saying they did something. Much of this was done in the name of what I call abstract wars. "War on Drugs" "War on Terror" "War on Poverty" "War on inflation". More often than not, it's a war on freedom instead.

"Fast and Furious" Eric Holder is his usual self. After blocking the Fast and Furious gun running probes so he can push his gun grabs, he's now going after election integrity measures. despite SCOTUS striking down the current measures. Obama won't fire him. He supports him. He's protected by Holder - as most employees protect their bosses. Technically he's supposed to work for the people, much as corporate lawyers work for the corporation instead of the President, CEO, or Exec Director, but in reality, how much is that really the case unofficially? He's a toady, and a dangerous one.

In the 45 last years, AG corruption is nothing new. Those who knew about Eric Holder aren't surprised by this. He came from the Janet Reno and Jamie Gorelick (Reno's deputy) school of corruption. Jamie Gorelick was the "brains" behind Waco, and the biggest problem on the 9/11 commission (and Vice-Chair of Fannie Mae - remember the subprime mortgages) She also supports back door encryption keys so government can snoop into communications. More power. This was well before the Patriot Act, Dept of Homeland Security, and FISA.

Gonzales wasn't a prize either. John Mitchell was corrupt. Ramsey Clark is who he is. With the power and increasing militarization of federal law enforcement, it's now time to separate the presidency and law enforcement.

This needs it's own elected office and own accountability, away from the rest of the executive branch. (not to mention that the BATF and IRS need to be disbanded)
File:US Department of Justice Organizational Chart.png
We elect the Attorney General in Michigan. Bill Schuette doesn't answer to Rick Snyder. Mike Cox didn't answer to Jennifer Granholm. Jennifer Granholm didn't answer to John Engler. They answered to voters. They aren't perfect, but all of them are better than Holder, Reno, and John Mitchell. Even Granholm.

Frankly, I'd do what I rarely support, and that is to amend the Constitution making the federal AG an elective office (or at least independent).  4 year term, non presidential years. Requirements of licensed attorney and 10 years legal experience, including litigation and/or judicial experience.  Presidents aren't trustworthy enough to appoint someone to run this office. No more Holders, Renos, or Mitchells. 

Department of Homeland Security - Has it made us safer? Does the TSA policies and airport groping make us safer? Thanks, W. This one's on you.  Much like the Patriot Act (most provisions first proposed by Janet Reno, Bill Clinton, and Orrin Hatch in the name of the War on Drugs), this was a quick response to a crisis with things that would not have otherwise passed. Bad is bad. Even if something is well intended,

The problem with the "War on Terror" is that the government decides what's a terrorist. From the Cato Institute

 This follows a long line of fusion center and DHS reports labeling broad swaths of the public as a threat to national security. The North Texas Fusion System labeled Muslim lobbyists as a potential threat; a DHS analyst in Wisconsin thought both pro- and anti-abortion activists were worrisome; a Pennsylvania homeland security contractor watched environmental activists, Tea Party groups, and a Second Amendment rally; the Maryland State Police put anti-death penalty and anti-war activists in a federal terrorism database; a fusion center in Missouri thought that all third-party voters and Ron Paul supporters were a threat; and the Department of Homeland Security described half of the American political spectrum as “right wing extremists.”

Terrorists these days are less "real terrorists" and more and more anyone that disagrees with the government. Government officials are a bigger threat to me than actual terrorists. Terrorists are a threat, but remember that in the 20th century, governments have killed over 262 million people. How many were in the name of national security? Can't happen here? Ask an American Indian. As much as I'd like to say that there should be no federal domestic law enforcement powers of any kind outside of the military, that's not feasible. However, it needs to be more limited, strictly to interstate matters (including fugitives crossing state lines), federal property, labwork, border control, and foreign affairs. As for the rest, that's why we have MSP, the Sheriff, and local PD.

BATFE - Disband it. We don't need it. Innocents died from them.

IRS - The Obama IRS scandals aren't the first. They won't be the last. FDR admin abused it's power. Eisenhower and Kennedy admins did it. Nixon admin did it. Clinton admin did it. Bush admin might have done it. Obama did it. This will continue long after Obama's gone. It's time to disband the IRS or at least disband the powers that it had regarding deduction auditing of both individuals and organizations. A flat tax improves, but won't get rid of the IRS. I'm moving back in favor of the Fairtax with a food exception. Straight-forward, clear, and gets the politics more removed from it. In the alternative, make the Department of Treasury an elected position like it is at the county level.

EPA - This started with Nixon. That ought to get our guard up right there. The EPA power abuses are due to Congress giving them the power to do so. They have broad power due to what was given to them in the 1970's.

Most of these agencies have their own administrative law The code of federal regulations books could fill a library. Here's a list of agencies.

The size of the federal government is at a record high. The amount of good that they do is at a record low.

This isn't just an Obama issue. This has been a problem at times going back really to Roosevelt (in his defense he had WWII in his last full and partial), but especially to LBJ and Nixon. The executives at the time used/overused their power to various degrees, but the last three administrations were particularly bad.

Checks and balances is what is supposed to keep this government out of control. Right now, there's too much power in the executive branch. That needs to change. At a minimum, make the AG and Treasury an elected position that doesn't answer to the President. Better yet, start eliminating unneeded departments.  

Friday, February 21, 2014

Dems talking up their chances

The dems political director has been chirping. Unfortunately for him, he doesn't get this county.

 From the Argus.
“We’ve increasingly seen Livingston County as a whole trending more and more Democratic each election cycle,” said Ellenburg, who will share his message with county Democrats on Thursday.
“I think voters are very aware of what’s been happening here in Lansing, and I think folks are finding out Republicans are voting against their best interest,” he added.

Ellenberg needs to stop reading Thomas Frank and start looking at reality. I'll say this slowly so he can understand. People don't vote against their best interest. The democrat philosophy is not in my best interest. Wayne County politics is not in our county's best interest. Most of the voters that move to Livingston County don't want Wayne County politics. That's shown in the election results.

As far as Livingston trending Democrat, that's not happening. Taking away the two free passes in Howell Township, they have one elected official that has won a contested election over in heavily independent Unadilla, which isn't as democrat as it used to be.

 Ellenburg likened Livingston’s political landscape to Oakland County, where Democrats in 2012 were elected to prosecuting attorney, clerk, treasurer and water commissioner.
He said the rise of Democrats in heavily Republican Oakland County could be repeated in Livingston County with the right “farm team” that seeks quality candidates to fill the ballot.
This isn't Oakland County. There's no Southfields here. Hartland isn't West Bloomfield. Brighton isn't Royal Oak. In order for that farm team of dems to get elected here, we need to screw up badly. We have room for error to work with, although we hopefully don't need to use it. The democrats have none. They need top notch candidates here and hope that we run a Don Sherwood or nobody.

I was quoted out of context here. That's on me.

Wholihan considered the Howell Township loss a major blow and vowed to run Republicans for all open seats up and down the ticket in future elections.
He said the county GOP isn’t taking the upcoming election for granted and that Democrats could win with the right candidates.
“If bad candidates are running, then they don’t have a chance. If there’s a good candidate, they have a chance,” he said.
“Things sometimes change,” Wholihan added.
What I should have said instead was that the dems have not been running good candidates. If Ellenberg who puts his nose up in the air and says that we are voting against their best interest is selecting the candidates, than we can do nothing and still win the county. That's not how we do things, so we are going to make sure we're ready and preparing for a Jake Donahue and hoping for a Edmund Senkowski level of candidate. 

The "Things sometimes change" part is due to how we can't just assume Livingston County will stay Republican because that's how things always been. With migration we always need to be prepared. We need to make sure that our new voters see that things are run well here in Livingston County as a counterexample to Wayne County. This isn't Ed McNamara, Mike Duggan, and Bob Ficano Country. 50 years of Democrats destroyed Wayne County. During that time Livingston County prospered. One county is Republican. One is Democrat.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Chattanooga VW workers tell UAW no deals

While I'll never buy a VW or a foreign car, I'm happy to see this. I'm from a UAW family, but the UAW hasn't done a damn thing to help workers since before the Clinton years. When they caved on outsourcing, followed by endorsing the NAFTA signing Bill Clinton, that was it. The plant most of my family worked is gone. The contracts are getting worse. Not all paid members of the local union could even vote on the contracts. The members can't even vote for UAW president.

The UAW is not about work conditions, contracts, or protecting good workers from bad management anymore. It's about politics, 6 digit salaries to fat cats, favors, and mafia style protection rackets. I sometimes read "Solidarity Magazine." The last time I read it, there was an abortion article featured. What the hell does abortion have to do with auto worker contracts?

From CNN

 CNN) -- Union organizers in the South suffered a setback Friday when workers at the Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, voted against being represented by the United Auto Workers.
The vote was 712 against the union and 626 in favor. There are about 1,550 hourly workers at the plant who were eligible to vote.
The vote was seen as the UAW's best chance to organize a nonunion auto plant, because Volkswagen management did not oppose the effort.
"We commend Volkswagen for...trying to provide an atmosphere of freedom to make a decision," said UAW Region 8 Director Gary Casteel, who directs the union's Southern organizing. "Unfortunately, politically motivated third parties threatened the economic future of this facility."
Organizers faced strong opposition by Republican officials who wanted to maintain Tennessee's reputation as a non-union state in order to attract new businesses.
If the UAW wasn't a political organization arm first, this probably would not have happened. 

The UAW is now nothing more than an arm of the democrats. 50 years of "progressive" democrat rule destroyed Detroit. With Mike Duggan there, I expect more of the same. He's an Ed McNamara protege. The jobs and plants have declined or are gone here.

Tennessee doesn't need or want this crap sprouting up in Chattanooga. Eastern Tennessee has largely been Republican since The Civil War. Much (not all) of it never was democrat outside of a blowout year like Bresden's re-election. This wasn't George Wallace territory (Chattanooga area voted for him, rest of East TN did not), Clinton territory, Al Gore territory (Middle TN), or Jimmy Carter territory.

Volkswagen said it was neutral on the vote, but opponents of the union had also criticized the company for being too welcoming of the union organizing effort.
Volkswagen wants to establish a so-called "works council" at the plant, in which management and hourly workers together come up with ways to make the plant's operations more efficient.
The automaker has works councils at virtually every plant it operates around the world. But there were doubts about whether the council could be set up under U.S. labor law without a union being in place.
Volkswagen said it will try to move ahead with a works council, despite the outcome of the vote.

If you have to form a union to have a works council, why not something like Nonpartisan Autoworkers of Tennessee instead of the UAW democrats? Get the politics out of it and focus on work conditions. 

Friday, February 14, 2014

Those email and direct mail solicitations - trust but verify

One of the more annoying parts of the political business is getting 6-7 emails a day from different groups asking for money. I've long given my opinion about donating to the NRSC or NRCC for various reasons. While I don't donate to them at all, at least they spend their money on actual elections.

I got this one email the other day from something calling itself "Conservative Campaign Committee" claiming to be a Ted Cruz supporting PAC. I get about 3 emails a day from this group. I then saw the address from California. Why the hell would a Ted Cruz PAC be headquartered in California? 

I looked them up on FEC. Committee Code. C00495010
They raised 1.57 million last year. 2013. They spent 1.57 million last year and have 20K cash on hand. I have to question that spending considering it was a mid-year. 

Direct Expenditures - $2000 to committees. $500 to Grooms in South Carolina. $250 to Jason Smith in Missouri. $1250 to Lonegan in New Jersey. 

Independent expenditures - $165,000. 

That means this PAC spent almost 1.4 Million in "Other federal operating expenditures." That ain't good. That's usually administrative costs, consulting, and other things. While some overhead is understandable (phones, utilities, rent, and even the occasional consultant), the majority of the money raised should go to candidate assistance or independent expenditures. Not salaries. Especially with a PAC. 

I got a ton of emails from "tea" as well. Committee Code C00520825

They raised $3 Million, and spent $2.7 million. $100,000 on candidate assistance. $25,000 on independent expenditures, and tons of consulting fees.

Keep in mind this is for 2013, which only has major elections in Virginia and New Jersey, outside of some special elections and local municipalities. Most of that money should be cash on hand for 2014 - if the goal is to actually assist candidates. Personally, I'm highly suspicious of this and think their goals are to keep the consultants (often themselves) in business instead of actually winning elections. 

Based on what I see based on FEC Reports under the committee numbers C00495010 and C00520825, I suspect that about 3-4 million of donor money was pissed away.

As a treasurer and campaign finance compliance consultant, I don't have much of a tolerance of waste. Consulting costs aren't always bad, but they should not be taking up 90% of your spending, especially when there isn't much given in candidate assistance. Consultants should enhance, not detract. These are PAC's, not candidate committees. PAC's don't need the same consultants that candidates do. 

My recommendation is to donate to who you trust. The more "national" a group is, the less apt that it be trustworthy.


Wednesday, February 12, 2014

The whole Michael Sam circus. Can you play football or not?

The media is extremely pro-gay and also extremely obsessed with this issue, to the point where it's quite unhealthy. If the media supports Michael Sam, the best thing they can do is shut the hell up about it.

There's two rules in the NFL and pro sports.
1. Do your job.
2. Don't be a distraction and hurt the team.

That's it. 

Tim Tebow was a distraction. It wasn't all, or even mostly his fault. The media was obsessed with him, and there's a large group of fans who acted like he was the first outspoken Christian to ever play in the NFL. He wasn't good enough to stick as QB, like many other Heisman winners like Andre Ware, Eric Crouch, and Matt Leinart. If Tebow was a borderline practice squad player, he's not going to be kept if he's a distraction and if the team is always asking questions about him.That's why he's not in the league. It's not because he's an outspoken Christian. Jon Kitna collected an NFL contract for 17 seasons. Kurt Warner lasted 12 seasons and won a Super Bowl. If you can play, you can play.
As a fan with some background with football, I will ask this question. Do you care if the Detroit Lions draft Michael Sam? My answer is this. "If he can play and isn't a major headcase like Titus Young." Whether he can play or not is to be determined. Is he a headcase? He isn't until proven otherwise.

Outside of the headcase part, I care about these things when it comes to defensive linemen.

1. Can they shed blocks?
2. Can they tackle?
3. Can they get to the quarterback?

I didn't mention any questions about their personal lives, politics, or other things. This is football. A football player's job isn't to be a preacher. A football player's job isn't to set public policy. This guy isn't trying to be my Priest, or even my state representative. He wants to play football. That's it.

In business, I don't ask about my client's personal lives unless it's something directly related to the business matter. If it doesn't relate to business, it's not my business.  As long as it's between consenting adults, I don't care (and as far as gay marriage goes, get government out of marriage and leave it to the churches).

Can he succeed? Pro sports despite the PC obsessed media and some agenda folks is still the least PC and most equal playing field there is. When all is said and done, there's winners and losers. There's people who can and people who can not do the job. People don't care about superficial stuff, your color, your politics, or your personal life. They care about if you can do your job. If Sam proves to be a winner in football, those that don't like gays will get over it. Winning trumps everything. If Sam isn't a winner in football, it's not because he bats for the other team, but because he wasn't good enough to make the team like most people. The media will have to get over that.


New Senate Candidate? Or not?

I saw this in today's Argus:

Yusif “Joe” Barakat plans to be Michigan’s next U.S. senator, and believes he can get to Washington, D.C., on a platform of “meaningful change” versus politics as usual.
The Hamburg Township Democrat, 78, is confident he can win with almost nil campaign funds in a race that is increasingly gaining national attention.
“My mission is to help change the planet. There’s an expression that says it’s only crazy people who think they can change the world and they’re usually the ones that can,” Barakat said.
“I may be flying at windmills. I’ve been called Don Quixote before,” he added.
Barakat, a Palestinian native, is in the process of getting enough signatures to appear on the Democratic primary ballot in August. U.S. Rep. Gary Peters, D-Bloomfield Township, is also running for the spot.
The Democratic winner in the race for the seat, currently filled by outgoing Sen. Carl Levin, D-Detroit, is likely to face Republican and former Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land in November’s general election for a six-year term.
Barakat has made local headlines for his participation in peace rallies and for his pro-Palestinian political views. While critical of the United States’ close ties to Israel, he said he’s also concerned about schools, roads and helping the elderly.
He has no outright criticism of Peters, but Barakat thinks Congress in general isn’t serving the public.

I checked the FEC report and no committee was listed. If he really is a candidate, he needs to send his stuff to the FEC.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Government raises the debt ceiling again. 193 dems and 28 republicans to blame

The debt ceiling just got raised again. Again. The credit limit got extended, bailing out fiscal irresponsibility.

All of the house dems except 2 (and 5 no votes) voted to increase the debt ceiling. Barrow and Matheson voted right. The rest of the dems screwed over this county.

All of the house republicans except 28 voted no (and 5 no votes). 28 of them screwed this country. 28 of them took the easy way out by giving Obama all that he wanted because they either wanted more spending, didn't have the balls for a battle, or assumed that they can make up for this if Republicans take the senate. Didn't they forget that Obama has three years left?

Here's the roll call vote.. While the description is to "To designate the air route traffic control center located in Nashua, New Hampshire, as the “Patricia Clark Boston Air Route Traffic Control Center”, it's used as the vehicle for the debt ceiling increase.

Latest Title: A bill to designate the air route traffic control center located in Nashua, New Hampshire, as the "Patricia Clark Boston Air Route Traffic Control Center".
Sponsor: Sen Shaheen, Jeanne [NH] (introduced 3/12/2013)      Cosponsors (1)
Related Bills: H.R.1092
Latest Major Action: 3/26/2013 Referred to House subcommittee. Status: Referred to the Subcommittee on Aviation.
Note: The measure is expected to be a vehicle to extend the public debt limit and repeal a reduction in the cost-of-living adjustment for military retirees. The House Committee on Rules has posted a text.

Apparently the cost of living adjustment repeal was not included. 

The 28 screw ups are:

1. John Boehner - the speaker. The house should have listened to me years ago and put Mike Pence in charge instead. Boehner gave us the bank bailouts and caved on every single debt ceiling measure. Big spending Bush Republicanism didn't work, and Obama broke his records and made it worse. Both are unacceptable. Boehner was there for all of it. All of it. Every single time. 

2. Ken Calvert - California

3. Dave Camp - Camp may be the most economic liberal congressman in Michigan

4. Eric Cantor - Our next speaker? I hope not.

5. Howard Coble - Retiring

6. Chris Collins - Swing district

7. Charlie Dent - Swing district

8. Mike Fitzpatrick - Swing district

9. Russ Grimm - Swing district

10. Richard Hanna - liberal republican

11. Doc Hastings - What's his excuse?

12. Darrell Issa - Defense guy

13. Peter King - Big spender.

14. Frank LoBiando - Democrat leaning district

15. Kevin McCarthy -Majority whip

16. Buck McKeon - Retiring

17. Pat Meehan - Swing District

18. Gary Miller - surprised he's still got a job.

19. Devin Nunes - What's his excuse

20. Dave Reichert - swing district

21. Hal Rogers - Big spender

22. Peter Roskam - Expected better from him

23. Ed Royce - What's his excuse?

24. Jon Runyan - Retiring.

25. John Shimkus - What's his excuse?

26. Chris Smith - Fiscally liberal. Great on life issue, but not as good on other issues.

27. David Valadao - Swing district

28. Frank Wolf - Retiring and in a government workers district.

I'm not a big Paul Ryan fan becuase he's not nearly as fiscal conservative as people make him out to be. He did come through this time.

Mike Rogers voted correctly as well, as did most of the Republicans in the Michigan delegations, Benishek, Huizenga, Amash, Upton, Walberg, Rogers, Miller, and Bentivolio came through this time.

Boehner needs to go. He needs a primary.

As I said before with this issue.

Obama and Congress both deserve the blame. This keeps going up and up and up because you have House leadership wanting to "balance" the budget over 30 years (not good enough) with a halfway job and Obama and the Senate (Both dems and the beyond worthless McCain/Graham) calling a cut in the growth of increased spending a "cut" when it really is a spending increase. The goalposts are shifted way too far with those proposals and "negotiations". Paul Ryan is no Mike Pence. John Boehner is at the point where I can't even comment except to say that he's making our jobs here much more difficult. This is unacceptable. It's killing us. We get tainted by DC even though Livingston County does such a good job with budget issues that they aren't even in our league. Budgets are always balanced and taxes aren't increased here.

It's not too much to ask for DC to balance the budget without raising taxes. It can be done. It just takes something that isn't there in DC. Guts and a plan.

The price for increasing the debt ceiling needs to be this (at a start) with a take it or leave it.:

1. Zero based budgeting of all departments. All of them.
2. Anything not needed needs to go. That includes the BATF.
3. Repeal Obamacare
4. Repeal the TSA

That's a start and by no means a finish.