Having just transitioned from 2009 into 2010, one thing we can say is that it has been a year like no other. Then again, we can say that about every year. We do say that about every year.
The year 2009 was supposed to be a year that began with great hope. We had elected a new president, and we were satisfied that the Republicans of 2008 were the cause of all the malcontent in the world. It was an easy excuse, but we liked it. Things can only get better, right?
Announcement: Inventors' Forum
Next Meeting: March 3, 2010 at 5:30PM
To be held at: Marquette University High School
Room 127, Conference Center
3306 W. Michigan Street, Milwaukee
Topic: Funding Strategies for New Inventions
Mark Fuchs: Launching Products in a Global Marketplace
Dave Linz: Getting Government Funding
For more information visit our website
Are you tired of calling Customer Service at some company and getting the “run around”? the multiple and endless choices of pushing this or that number for this or that service, and in the end, talking with someone who is of no help, and who really doesn’t care ?
So am I ………… whether utility companies, software companies, retailers --- you name it --- Customer Service is usually not only a misnomer, but an outright LIE !
A few days ago a "journalist" on a FOX news program commenting about the public's revulsion with the actions of Tiger Woods, said something very seriously along these lines:
"I understand that Tiger is a Buddhist or something. There is not the forgiveness in Buddhism that there is in Chrisitianity. I would suggest that he convert to Christianity and receive forgiveness for his actions."
With the New Year upon us, it is important to mention a new change in traffic law. Beginning on January 1, 2010, Wisconsin Act 97 permits U-turns at controlled intersections where signs prohibiting U-turns are not installed. A controlled intersection means any intersection that is controlled by traffic control signals or by a traffic officer. There are important guidelines to follow when making a legal U-turn from a controlled intersection.
National Influenza Vaccination Week is January 10-16, 2010 and the need for people to get immunized throughout the entire flu season is highlighted. Flu vaccination is the best way to protect yourself and your family from the flu and its potentially severe complications.
This has been an unusual flu season with circulation of the H1N1 flu virus. It is estimated that 47 million Americans have been infected with the H1N1 virus resulting in 213,000 hospitalizations and 9,820 deaths. There have been 280 pediatric deaths which is three times what is seen in a typical flu season. The H1N1 continues to hit children and young adults the hardest.
We have survived one quarter of the Obama term already. As difficult as it got, we have survived. A year of failure and lies is certain to be followed by three more years of failure and lies. America voted to give Barack Obama the chance to heal the country's problems. We took his promises at face value and placed our hope in him and his administration with one caveat-the plans had to work.
We, as Americans were sold on hope and change for the better. We certainly received less than that. On energy, Obama said that he was open to offshore drilling. Whatever happened to that? Apparently he made that promise just to get elected. We are no closer to energy independence. And thinking that solar panels and windmills will solve our problem, that's just plain out deceit.
As we watch and experience the death of American capitalism, there is a general finger-pointing exercise that aims at creeping socialism. But the U.S. is much farther from socialism than ever, and there is no remnant of it if there ever was one. In the 1930s, President Franklin Roosevelt instituted some economic plans that put the brakes on run-away capitalistic greed in order to save the United States from total disaster. Since then there has been a steady march toward greed capitalism.
Greed capitalism is not really capitalism at all. It has been a carefully crafted scheme to bilk Americans into thinking they were engaged in a never-ending economic spiral upward. We were made into spending and buying robots. We became such good puppets that we never blinked when the American dream cost us two, instead of one, adult workers in each family unit in order to afford to make ends meet. That meant doubling the work force in order to meet mediocrity in America.
Both right-wing evangelist Pat Robertson and equally right-wing radio squawker Rush Limbaugh have openly shared their similar opinion about the earthquake that ravaged Haiti. They both have been critical of the people of Haiti and in a real sense blame the people of that long-suffering nation themselves for much of their misery. Pat Robertson, receiving a backlash from the general American public, has tried to gloss over his insensitive statements, but remains critical of Haitians for their "deal with the devil," a total distortion of historical facts. Rush Limbaugh is proudly holding fast to his boasting and insensitivity.
These political bed partners share more than just their inhuman reaction to a catastrophe of monumental proportions. They are prototypes of the crude, cruel, inhuman, and unholy alliance that has been formed between the political right-wing and the fundamental religious pentecostals. Each group was out of power, on the fringe of American political and religious society. They parlayed their out-of-the-mainstream rants into a force to be reckoned with. In fact, they helped in forming a coalition of those two fringe groups and took control of the Republican Party. Not long ago, even the staunchest right-winger would have been embarrassed to be identified with either Limbaugh or Robertson. Today, their power-grab in American conservative politics has elevated them to center court.
"We want our money back."Sometimes it's hard to believe that that statement actually came from President Barack Obama. But then we remember that it came from the antibusiness sentiment of the Obama administration. President Obama gets a perverse sense of pleasure whenever he thinks that he can stick it to the banks. First, Obama thinks that he saved the American economy by bailing out the banks. Now, he wants Americans to think that banks are the root of evil in America today.
The Obama administration tries to grab credit for the reversal of the economic slowdown. Again this year, all the problems that Obama has her inherited from the Bush administration. However, if you take a second look, the economic slowdown began to accelerate when it was clear that Obama was going to become the next president of the United States. Companies uncertain of the economic future because of unknown level of taxes that would be forthcoming, there will be a lot of them, began to cut costs. Now, after hitting bottom of an 18 month recession, Obama takes all the credit. The Obama administration also takes credit for this stimulus bill working wonders as designed. Then in the next breath, people will claim that only 25% of the stimulus bill is been paid out. If it works out well at 25%, why not canceled the remaining 75%? What about making the taxpayer a whole on this issue?
Watching "Meet the Press" on NBC-TV, with the moderator sitting between former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton was a change in the environment. I personally did not like either of their administrations or either of them personally. But there they were, exchanging cooperative comments about joining them in support of Haiti following that horrible earthquake there. Though differing in their political perspectives, they were able to put that aside for the good of humanity and for the good will of the American people. How absolutely appropriate and examplery was this action. In today's overheated political climate, with political wars swirling all around us, and every single thing dividing Americans in polarizing hatred, one could ponder for one brief moment the possibilities inherent in cooperation. Could it possibly become a catalyst to return to the sanity of politics and government in the U.S.?
On another front, I reminisce about Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in America. I knew him. I knew his father, "Daddy King," better. I met his mother also. In fact, I was asked by Daddy King to speak at their church, Ebenezer Baptist in Atlanta. I sat on Daddy King's front lawn with him one night as he spoke of his son's murder exactly one year ago on that evening. He told me, "I thought that after one year the pain would begin to ease. It hasn't." I had no words. I was emotionally blown away. Someday some author will write a book about the impact of Daddy King on his son's life. It was profound. Someday, perhaps, a movie will be made about the largely untold story of Daddy King, the pastor with the worn-smooth dark blue suit, the humble man, the man of principle, the man of God. His story and influence must be told!
President Barack Obama and the Democrat leaders in Congress are once again at the level of desperation for the healthcare insurance reform bill that has been going through Congress for about a year. Perhaps soon, we can get to the point to where the current bill will finally be defeated. Then, we can start over using bipartisan ideas of real reform that America will want and agree with.
Democrats still seem determined to shut this down the throats of an unwilling population for their own selfish interests. If this is such a good idea, why do we need all the payoffs? Why all the rides for the congressional votes? The administration is seeking passage of this bill purely for their own narcissistic views. They want a political victory. They want a political victory at any cost.
First up, the highlight of yesterday's Trustee meeting was that WFB participated in a sale of bonds. One was a re-funding of higher-rate bonds to lower, saving the Village $335k at a paltry 2.7% interest rate, near the 42-year low for rates. Amazing.
Today marked the demise of Air America, the predominently liberal radio system. I have been searching to remember if I ever listened to it. I don't believe I ever did. No matter. I do not like stilted political radio.
Most disturbing to me are the sweeping conclusions drawn about its demise. Right-wing extremists see in its death the pending death knell for all of liberal thought and action. They see it as proof that liberalism is a failure. That's pretty drastic and over-reaching in opinion. No similar conclusions were drawn by liberals about the bankruptcy of major American corporations that generously supported right-wing agendas. Corporations that almost exclusively heralded conservative programs have died. So?
The Milwaukee public schools are set to improve starting this year. This of course, sounds like a headline from the Onion. And of course it could be. Whether it be here, at Logos of the Bogus, or the Onion, either way, it is a joke.
MPS just went through a superintendent selection process. By the early part of last week, the board had their selection arrow down to three worthy candidates-one who can't manage money, someone who cheats on his taxes, or someone who just did a poor job in general. And taking its cue from the legislative process, the board late on Friday night. They chose a guy who can't manage money.
Among the myriad things we have forgotten about the horrid two terms of George W. Bush, the Iraqi mistake hangs over us. It will haunt us for a long, long time. Anyone with any historical and current understanding of the Iraq "nation" knew what a terrible mistake was made invading that sovereign nation. Yes, Saddam was a horrible leader, but no nation, including the U.S., has the right to trump up false charges to justify such an invasion. And have the ongoing ignorance and bravado to celebrate our "victory" there with a broad "Mission Accomplished" sign as President Bush had one shaky hand on the steering wheel of the plane that landed on a aircraft carrier with him in full military gear. Shades of the AWOL military reservist Bush.
While Bush slinked out of the White House, conservatives, wishing to cover-up the Iraqi mistake, celebrated the new direction taken by General Petraeus. That new direction shook out this way in Iraq. To quell the Sunni insurgency, the U.S. under the new general's leadership, secretly put the Sunni military on the payroll of the United States. The cost: $30 million a month. And it was done without the knowledge of the Shiite government in Baghdad. Who knows what else they were promised? But this much I know. The Sunni leaders thought they would get autonomy in their western province, a share in Iraqi oil revenue, and a voice in the national government in Iraq. It does not look as though the central, Shiite-led government in Baghdad is prepared to grant those wishes. And that government hated the deal the Americans cut wth the Sunnis.
The Democrat arrogance that has been emanating in this country has also been greatly slowed down. The political parties nationalized the Senate race in Massachusetts. It became a referendum on Obama care. The citizens of Massachusetts became a voice for the nation and spoke loudly and clearly that Congress and the Obama administration must take a new direction for America to be successful.
Running on a platform of being the 41st vote to stop the healthcare monstrosity that is currently going through Congress helped elect Scott Brown. Also on the Brown platform is concern about huge budget deficits, national security, and the statement economy. All were to be addressed by the Obama administration but instead he made the "jobs" priority low on his to do list while he turned practically single-mindedly towards passing the healthcare reform bill. Obama bet his presidency on it, and now it looks like he has lost.