No Runny Eggs

The repository of one hard-boiled egg from the south suburbs of Milwaukee, Wisconsin (and the occassional guest-blogger). The ramblings within may or may not offend, shock and awe you, but they are what I (or my guest-bloggers) think.

Day by Day cartoon

Archive for January, 2011

January 30, 2011

Go back, Demon Snow…

by @ 16:05. Filed under Weather.

After a couple of winters of laughing my ass off at the East Coasters, northwest burb types, and those south of the Root River, it looks like I’m finally going to get mine…a massive dumping of snow, that is. Well, it’s not supposed to be too bad…until Tuesday night, when all Hell breaks loose with 12-18 inches, combined with a blizzard wind, to fall on top of the 4-6 that’s supposed to hit tonight through the day on Tuesday.

In honor of that, I’m bringing back a classic Soviet “Everyone to the fight with the blizzard” graphic my blogfather used to run…

Oh yeah, I also have a request in to Bob and Brian to re-run Demon Snow (link to the transcripted version). “Go back, Demon Snow, back from whence you came. Leave the good people of Milwaukee alone.”

January 26, 2011

Post-SOTU Doomsday Read – Tom Blumer’s “Uncle Sam’s Dangerous Deterioration”

by @ 11:15. Filed under Budget Chop, Politics - National.

If Paul Ryan’s and Michele Bachmann’s warning-klaxons’ responses weren’t enough to scare you, Tom Blumer took apart in his latest Pajamas Media column the 2010 Financial Report of the United States Government. I could focus on the after-TARP-tricks (explained in the column) cash deficit of $1.41 trillion in 2010 (with 2009′s adjusted downward by a like amount to $1.30 trillion), or the $2.08 trillion (after a $0.13 trillion worsening adjustment in changes of assumptions related to long-term assumptions on federal employee retirement benefits) net operating cost (GAAP) deficit, or the fact that, for each of the 14 years the report was to be produced to GAAP standards, the Government Accountability Office could not sign off on it. However, since I’ve somehow become a SocSecurity “watcher”, I’ll focus on that:

How about Social Security and Medicare? Well, there’s bad news and, as is often the case with this bunch, pretend good news. The bad news, as seen here, is that the government’s actuarial liability for Social Security jumped by $270 billion in fiscal 2010 to almost $8 trillion. The program now runs at a deficit during most months. Without changes, Social Security will hemorrhage cash at an ever-increasing rate in the coming years.

But, but, but I thought the Trustees said SocSecurity’s position was “improved” relative to taxable payroll because PlaceboCare will force employers to offer more wages instead of health insurance. That leads me to the Medicare part…

As to Medicare, the government claims at that same link that its actuarial liability for that program decreased by $15.3 trillion, a stunning turnaround it attributes to the passage of ObamaCare. Here what the GAO had to say about that assertion:

Significant uncertainties [...] primarily related to the achievement of projected reductions in Medicare cost growth reflected in the 2010 Statement of Social Insurance, prevented us from expressing an opinion on that statement.

That’s polite accounting-speak for: “Though we can’t prove it, we think it’s a load of rubbish.”

Which raises the question of whether the 75-year actuarial deficit in Social Security should only have gone up by $270 billion. I should note that the GAO actuarial deficit does not include any “trust fund” operations as the money does not exist (yet).

As for the cash deficits, the latest CBO “The Budget and Economic Outlook” (released today) now projects that the combined OASDI funds will not return to anything approaching cash surpluses, though the OASI fund will have a very-minimal (under $10 billion) cash surplus between 2012 (or perhaps 2013; the chart is unclear) and 2015.

I’m still digesting the larger report, but there’s two more things to note right now – if current laws, levels of taxation and levels of spending continue/increase/decrease/end as scheduled, the FY2009-FY2012 deficits will be $5.3 trillion (with $1.5 trillion projected for this fiscal year and $1.1 trillion projected for FY2012), and total debt will eclipse the Gross Domestic Product no later than 2017.

Wednesday Hot Read – Michelle Malkin’s “Cash for Education Clunkers”

by @ 8:01. Filed under Education, Politics - National.

There is a basic reason why The Boss (Emeritus) makes significant coin for punditry – she can pull together the narrative into 600 or so words, and then really drop the hammer (sans sickle) on a few hours’ notice. The extended version of today’s column on her blog is well worth the visit. I’ll whet your appetite with what I would have started and ended with:

Our government already spends more per capita on education than any other of the 34 wealthiest countries in the world except for Switzerland, according to recent analysis of data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Overall inflation-adjusted K-12 spending has tripled over the past 40 years, the Michigan-based Mackinac Center for Public Policy points out. Yet American test scores and graduation rates are stagnant. One in 10 high schools is a dropout factory. And our students’ performance in one of the most prestigious global math competitions has been so abysmal that the U.S. simply withdrew altogether.

January 25, 2011

STF…er, SOTU Drunkblog – Sesame Street Seating Edition

by @ 19:30. Filed under Politics - National.

Shoebox and I will be in rare form tonight as President Obama bloviates for somewhere north of an hou…er, fulfills his Constitutional duty to update Congress on the state of the Union. Like most drunkblogs, there will be vulgarities involved. Unlike Congress, however, we won’t have assigned faux bipartisan seating.

Speaking of said seating, what the fuck was John Boehner thinking? There are but two ways that can end, and neither of them well for Republicans. Either they’ll be surrounded by a sea of Arizona “mourn..”er, Democrat cheerleaders while they properly sit on their hands, or they’ll expose themselves as the Stupid Half of the Bipartisan Party-In-Government.

Oh well; the fun begins below. Since, as always, we’re using Cover It LIve, all you have to do is sit back, relax, drink heavily, and chime in; CiL will handle the refreshing for you.

STF…er, SOTU Drunkblog alert

This is the Emergency Bogging System. It has been activated because it has come to Steve’s attention that some of you may have missed his “invite update” to Shoebox’s preview.

We will be drunkblogging the Shut The Fu.., er, State of the Union Bloviatio…er, speech. The thread itself will open up at 7:30 pm (if Steve fuc…er, fouled up the coding on the invite, just refresh the main blog page then to find the thread), with the drunkblogging kicking off at 7:45. Speaking of the invite, allow us to repeat it.

Warning; unlike the NewTone taken in this post, the expletives won’t be censored on the drunkblog.

This concludes this post by the Emergency Blogging System.

January 24, 2011

A Preview

by @ 18:53. Filed under Budget Chop, Politics - National.

Tomorrow evening, President Obama will address a joint session of Congress and present the annual State of the Union Address.  We here at NRE will be joining the festivities and Drunkblog the event live, or as close to “live” as several Tanqueray martinis will allow me to be.

You can watch the SOTU address and determine for yourself, whether Obama has become the centrist that the MSM claims he has been reincarnated as or whether he remains the hard leftist that brought us Placebocare, stimulus and bail outs for all of his leftist friends.

As a public service, NRE brings you the following preview of the SOTU address:

Do you remember the Godzilla movies? Do you remember how the sound tracks were never in sync with the video?

Exactly two weeks prior to the SOTU address, President Obama went to Arizona to address the memorial for those killed in the assassination attempt on Representative Giffords. In that address, Obama lectured us about civility. He did so even though he himself, and those advisers like Rahm Emanuel, who have been closest to him, have rarely had a second thought about using graphic, violent language to describe a political opponent or policy they don’t agree with.

It was as I watched the Arizona address that the visual of the old Godzilla films hit me. Like them, the words that come from Obama’s mouth rarely match the actions of his administration or himself.

Tuesday night you will hear Obama talk about our need for fiscal responsibility. You’ll hear Obama give a nod to things like smart and efficient oversight that is somehow intended to be different than the ever increasing excesses that all administration agencies have lorded over their subjects. You may also hear Obama talk about corporate tax reform but don’t be fooled. Regardless of what you hear from his lips that may have you saying “Clintonesque,” ignore it. There is no “center” or “movement to the center” with Obama.

The Godzilla movies were fairly formulaic: monster arrives, monster destroys everything in sight, monster is subdued by a resilient people. Our national Godzilla movie has seen the first two acts. Will we see the resilient people subdue Godzilla?

Revisions/extensions (6:54 am 1/25/2011, steveegg) - I’m just adding a little reminder widget from Cover It Live so you guys will know where to head tonight.

Monday Hot Read – John Hawkins interviews Thomas Sowell

by @ 11:52. Filed under Economy, Politics - National.

John Hawkins posted an interview he did with Thomas Sowell recently on basic economics. Well, it’s not exactly “basic”, as the Q&As I’m teasing so you read the whole thing are items that wouldn’t be covered in a 100-level course:

…There’s a worry that China could essentially engage in economic warfare against the United States because they hold so much of our debt. Should we be greatly concerned about that?

Yes. For years, the Keynesians loved to downplay the importance of debt by saying we owe it to ourselves. There are problems with that which I go into in Basic Economics. But there are even bigger problems when in fact, we don’t owe it to ourselves, and something like 40 something percent of American debt is owed to foreigners. That means that at some point in the future, all those trillions of dollars worth of real goods and services in output of the American people will have to be shipped overseas to pay back the debt that we borrowed.

Well, speaking of trade issues, the United States has a rather sizable trade deficit. But you say in Basic Economics that the way it’s measured is very misleading and it’s really not that big of a problem. Tell us why that is.

Well, a product or trade is defined as the movement of physical goods across a national frontier, international trade that is, across national frontiers. But of course, that’s just one aspect of international economic relations. If the Japanese send us more cars than we send them and, therefore, they have a trade surplus, they’re not going to just put the money in the bank and let it gather dust. They’re more likely to buy assets in the United States, including such assets as automobile manufacturing plants — so they can build their Toyotas here instead of shipping across the Pacific. So the bigger picture, of course, is the financial picture.

But in general, I think the crucial evidence against the importance of international trade is during the Great Depression in the 1930s. For that entire decade, we had an export surplus. That didn’t seem to do the economy any good. I’m not saying it did any harm either. By the same token, during the 1990s when we had great prosperity, we had a trade deficit. So those things have to be looked at in terms of the specifics of the time and place. They’re not good things or bad things, just in general.

Ready to say I was (almost) completely wrong about Thompson

by @ 11:27. Filed under Sports.

The only reason why the “almost” is there is because the Lombardi Trophy isn’t home yet, but as ESPN’s Kevin Seifert points out (H/T – Kevin), it was the guys, and especially the role players, Ted Thompson brought in that got the Pack this far. I think I lost track of how many times I “borrowed” Mr. Fastbucks’ “Shields UP!” Tweet because Sam Shields’ play allowed Charles Woodson to play the “roving safety” role much like he did before Al Harris got hurt a couple seasons back. All the “role players” Thompson stockpiled came in very handy, as I think this is the first MASH Unit to make The Championship Game That Cannot Be Named™.

I have but three words to say on the way to the Baker’s Dozen vs. Seventh Heaven game…

GO PACK GO!!!

Number of the day – well under 400

by @ 7:37. Filed under Choo-choos.

According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, that would be the total number of people who decided to take the train to Chicago from Milwaukee on Sunday. The record-setting number was a bit over triple the usual 100 people who make the trip on a typical Sunday.

Yep; we really needed that Milwaukee-to-Madison Lobbyist HO train </sarcasm>

January 23, 2011

Recommended Reading (01/23/11)

by @ 18:52. Filed under Miscellaneous.

Here are, in my view, interesting, noteworthy columns and articles from the past week that I highly recommend:

What of the crimes, massacres prevented?

“A reader who refers to himself as ‘a common-sense liberal’ writes in:

In view of the agonized calls for increased restrictions on firearm ownership resurrected by the recent shooting in Arizona, could you write a column with meaningful statistics on death and injury nationwide prevented by the civilian ownership of firearms?”

High speed rail is a fast way to waste taxpayer money

“High-speed rail may sound like a good idea. It works, and reportedly even makes a profit, in Japan and France. If they can do it, why can’t we?

The truth about abortion

“The fact is that the majority of abortions — far from all, but the majority — serve as nothing more than routine birth control: Most women who have abortions became pregnant by willingly engaging in high-risk sexual activity, and many resort to abortion more than once. For a solid pro-choicer, this presents no problem; if unborn children have no rights, there is no harm done.”

Why Sarah Palin Drives Them Wild

“I wonder how many television hosts and “journalists” tuned in to Sarah Palin’s interview on ‘Hannity’ this week, waiting with bated breath for her to say something they could try to distort. And the more she says ‘this isn’t about me,’ the more they make it about her. Let’s enter the world of Sarah Palin for a moment.”

The State Against Blacks

“The welfare state has done to black Americans what slavery couldn’t do. . . . And that is to destroy the black family.”

Don’t kids shovel anymore?

“During my nearly three decades in Boston, exactly one kid has come by seeking a shoveling job. He worked for about 20 minutes on freeing my car from the snowplowed ridge that held it captive, whittling the wintry berm down to the point where you might possibly have extracted the vehicle if, say, you had a mammoth fork-lift at your disposal. When I noted same, he said he’d settle for half the agreed-on fee — and left me to finish the job.”

January 21, 2011

Citizens United – one year later

by @ 7:39. Filed under Politics - National.

One year ago today, Citizens United earned a major victory for political speech in the Supreme Court. In honor of that, Citizens United president David Bossie and legal counsel Ted Olson released a statement on that, while Citizens United put together a video about it.

Quoting from Olson’s portion of the release:

I think it may be the most important case in history because what that decision said is that individuals, under the First Amendment, cannot be inhibited, cannot be restrained, cannot be threatened, cannot be censored by the government when they wish to speak about elections and the political process. What could be more important than that? This is a robust expression of our fundamental liberties. I think it is the most important decision ever to be rendered by the Supreme Court in connection with the freedom of citizens to participate in the political process.

January 20, 2011

Doyle staff used “Enron accounting” on their way out the door

by @ 23:18. Filed under Politics - Wisconsin.

The Legislative Audit Bureau reviewed a few “questionable” decisions by the staff of former governor Jim Doyle (Democrat, for those of you just tuning in) that allowed the state to claim it was in compliance with the $65 million statutory minimum balance at the end of FY2010 by claiming the state general fund balance was $71.1 million. In order of, in my humble and non-expert opinion, increasing severity, here are the four items of “concern” that fell outside the scope of established Government Accounting Standards and thus outside last month’s “unqualified audit opinion”:

  • $10.6 million in “lapsed” amounts from program revenue appropriations to the general fund that were covered not by cash-on-hand, but by either accounts receivable or other assets - As the report notes, this is legal under Wisconsin law. However, it made cash available for FY2010 that was either not yet in hand or could only be put in hand by asset sales. I really would like to know how much of that was from accounts receivable (and how much of those receipts actually came in) versus how much was backed by illiquid assets, as that would determine how much of that represents a further hole in the state budget.
  • $25.9 million in funds spent in FY2010 but not reported as spent until FY2011 - This is a new twist on the “delayed payment syndrome” practiced by many states and advocated by some who want to avoid an increase in the federal debt limit. Usually, they’re “honest” enough to not spend the money until the new fiscal year “resets” things, but in this case, the money was gone in one fiscal year with only the recording of the expenditure delayed until the following one. Further, as it appears the fiscal year of the spending authority doesn’t match up with the fiscal year of expenditure, the LAB notes it appears to be inconsistent with the spirit of the portion of the state Constitution prohibiting expenditures without lawful-and-authorized appropriations.
  • $406,700 “lapsed” from the Unclaimed Property fund to the general fund - It may be but a drop in the bucket, but it’s a double-dipper for the Doyle administration. By state law, all the proceeds from the Unclaimed Property fund are to go to the Common School Fund, and under the state Constitution, the “clear proceeds” of property that comes under the custodianship of the state by escheat (e.g., unclaimed property) is to be used for educational purposes.
  • $8.8 million in “lapsed” amounts from program revenue appropriations to the general fund that were neither covered by cash nor by any assets - Now we get to the potentially-serious. There was, is, and will be no expectation of that $8.8 million ever existing, yet the Doyle administration claimed it did. In the private sector, that is a convictable felony.

Except for the heist from the Unclaimed Property fund, each of those other categories, especially the “whole-cloth” lapsing, is more than the difference between the reported closing FY2010 balance and the statutory minimum balance. I wonder what J.B. Van Hollen is doing these days.

To answer newly-minted Administration Secretary Mike Huebsch’s question of what this does to the over-$100 billion deficit in the current FY2010/2011 biennial budget (as quoted by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, which for some reason chose to focus instead on the up-to-$3.3 billion structural deficit the FY2012/2013 biennial budget needs to fill), my best guess as to how much of that $45.7 million is part of the expanded hole is somewhere between $9.2 million (the amount of the wholly-nonexistent lapses plus the improper raid on the Unclaimed Property fund) and $19.8 million (adding in the remainder of the potentially-nonexistent lapses). The $25.9 million in “delayed-reporting” spending, while odious, would have been spent prior to the end of FY2011 anyway and thus doesn’t appear to represent a further liability to the state.

Returning to CPAC

by @ 18:21. Tags:
Filed under Politics - National.

For the second year in a row, I’ll be covering CPAC from the ranks of the bloggers. This year, FreedomWorks has joined RedState as sponsors of

Since Rep. Paul Ryan will be there, I’m likely to grab an interview with him, either at the conference itself or at his office. Much of the GOP Presidential field is also attending, and I hope to get a word with many of them.

The Morning (give or take a couple hours) Scramble – Flowing back into it edition

by @ 12:01. Filed under The Morning Scramble.

Sorry about not being around all week. I miss my 24″ 1920×1200 monitor, which is in the shop getting a new power supply. Yes, the computer room TV at the bunker is 2 inches wider diagonally, but it’s missing 180 pixels on the bottom (far better than the 1366×768 one it replaced though), and I can’t quite get it to look as nice as the other one. I guess it’s time to bring back a special edition of The Morning Scramble, but instead of a song, I’ll start you off with my Congresscritter, Paul Ryan, unloading on the sham that is PlaceboCare. I highly recommend paying attention starting at the 1:42 mark, where he mentions that the Congressional Budget Office said that PlaceboCare will add to the debt.

YouTube Preview Image
  • Bruce noticed a liberal Madison talk-radio show host didn’t exactly get the memo about the “New Tone” we’re all supposed to have, as he went way over the top on Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch. Related – Charlie Sykes posted said liberal talk-radio host’s “apology” letter, issued only after almost two full days of firestorm, including a condemnation from the American Cancer Society (Kleefisch is a recent-cancer survivor).
  • Speaking of “New Tone”, Lieberal Edition, Ed Morrissey caught Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) channeling his inner Godwin mere months after being a target of chronic case of cerebral-rectalitis. Hey, I thought we weren’t supposed to say “blood libel” anymore (or does that only apply to those to the right of Che?).
  • It is Beat Duh Bears week part 3, so Dan Collins put up a trash-talk thread. Meat cleavers go through Bear hide just as easily as they did Falcon and Eagle feathers. GO PACK GO!
  • Philip Klein has a couple of rather interesting tidbits from the House vote to repeal PlaceboCare. If I have any steam after this, I need to explore the second item a bit further, but Klein pointed out (without naming, unfortunately) that 10 Democrats who voted against PlaceboCare last year now voted to keep it in place. I’ll name the 10:
    • Jason Altmire (PA 4th)
    • John Barrow (GA 12th)
    • Ben Chandler (KY 6th)
    • Tim Holden (PA 17th)
    • Larry Kissell (NC 8th)
    • Daniel Lipinski (IL 3rd, who also voted for Wreckonciliation)
    • Stephen Lynch (MA 9th)
    • Jim Matheson (UT 2nd)
    • Colin Peterson (MN 7th)
    • Heath Shuler (NC 11th)
  • Back to the “New Tone”, Lieberal Edition – PJ Gladnick caught a Palm Beach presstitute not only ignoring the New Tone, but repeating the early candidate for Lie of the Year in smearing the parents of one of the neurosurgeons who treated Rep. Gabrelle Giffords, as well as a shot at the neurosurgeon himself. Why, if I didn’t know better, I’d say that the lieberals see themselves as the Übermensch (and not in the Nietzsche mode).
  • Back to the Packers/Bears – Wendy and Chris have an interesting bet; donate a food item to a local pantry for each point their favored team (Wendy has the Pack, Chris has those Flatlanders) scores. Since I don’t think it’s going to be a high-scoring game, I’m thinking about donating one for every time the Packers stop Duh Bears. GO PACK GO!
  • Paul has an interesting idea for the debt limit – tie its rasing to PlaceboCare repeal.
  • You know all those polls (mostly stacked rather heavily in favor of Democrats) that claim Teh Won is getting his mojo back? Flap found an interesting sidebar in one of them – a majority of Americans want Obama to pursue more-conservative policies in the last 2 years of his term than he has in his first 2 years.
  • Jim Hoft found a Republican Congresscritter or two willing to cut non-defense discretionary spending to FY2006 levels for the next decade as part of a plan to reduce spending by $2.5 trillion over said decade. The bad news – the adopted FY2010 budget (the last one adopted, and the one the feds are working with still) anticipates a $3.2 trillion deficit between FY2011 (which started back on October 1, 2010) and FY2014. The ugly news – the CBO anticipates $10 trillion in new debt over the next decade, so that $2.5 trillion cut is only 25% of what is needed.
  • Kevin Binversie explains why Manitowoc is the Obama post-STF…er, SOTU speech stop. It’s not the bratwurst.

It’s noon, so it’s time to wrap this up.

January 16, 2011

MLK spoke like a conservative

by @ 18:23. Filed under Miscellaneous.

The following is an entry I posted on MLK Day 2008 on my blog at FranklinNOW.com:

“I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal. I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”

Martin Luther King Jr. in his famous speech at the Lincoln Memorial in August 1963.

On more than one occasion on Channel 10’s InterCHANGE, I’ve surmised that if alive today, King would oppose affirmative action. He would denounce racial quotas.

“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”

That sounds to me like a perfect conservative value.

Character- conservative candidates say it matters, and conservative voters look for it in various candidates.

On this Martin Luther King Day, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette editorial page editor Paul Greenberg says:

“Martin Luther King Jr. meets the very definition of an American conservative, that is, someone dedicated to preserving the gains of a liberal revolution.

After he was gone, a new black intelligentsia arose that knew not Martin. His would not be the name embroidered on the baseball caps of another generation. The legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. would give way to the frustrations of a Malcolm X, the demagoguery of a Louis Farrakhan, and the general hucksterism of the Al Sharptons and Jesse Jacksons.

You can tell a lot about an age by the heroes it chooses. While the Malcolms and Farrakhans come and go in favor, Martin Luther King Jr. remains the standard by which all other leaders are measured, and not just black leaders. That’s a hopeful sign.”
—Kevin Fischer blog, 1/21/08

Given King’s famous remarks, it makes one wonder why so many liberals today relish playing the race card. Wouldn’t King find that offensive and insulting to minorities?

Recommended Reading (01/16/11)

by @ 18:17. Filed under Miscellaneous.

Here are, in my view, interesting, noteworthy columns and articles from the past week that I highly recommend:

Liberals seek a ban on metaphors in wake of Arizona shooting

“Every time liberals produce an example of military lingo from a Republican – ‘we’re going to target this district’ — Republicans produce five more from the Democrats.

President ‘whose asses to kick’ Obama predicted ‘hand-to-hand combat’ with his political opponents and has made such remarks as ‘if they bring a knife to the fight, we bring a gun’ — making Obama the first American president to advocate gun fights since Andrew Jackson.

These are figures of speech known as ‘metaphors.’ (Do liberals know where we got the word ‘campaign’?)

By blaming a mass killing on figures of speech, liberals sound as crazy as Loughner with his complaints about people’s grammar. Maybe in lieu of dropping all metaphors, liberals should demand we ban metonyms so that tragedies like this will never happen again.”

The progressive “climate of hate:” An illustrated primer, 2000-2010

“The Tucson massacre ghouls who are now trying to criminalize conservatism have forced our hand. They want to play tu quo que in the middle of a national tragedy? They asked for it. They got it.”

The hateful left

“‘The Left’s sudden talk about incendiary political rhetoric in the wake of the Arizona shooting isn’t really about political rhetoric at all. It’s about the real-world failure of leftist policies everywhere—the bankrupting of nations and states by greedy unions and unfundable social programs, the destruction of inner cities by identity politics, and the appeasement of Muslim extremists in the face of worldwide jihad, not to mention the frequently fatal effects of delirious environmentalism.”

Jared Loughner was a Tea Partier (and I’m am Atheist River Dancer Who Hates Hunting)

“I bet you Lefties in D.C. and in the Blame Stream Media really sucked at playing connect the dots in first grade, didn’t you?”

The 11 most ludricous free passes given to the Obamas

“What burns conservatives most of all is the refusal of the journalistic community to do its job where Obama is involved. Historically, the American press tends to be hard on a sitting president and the American people expect it. This keeps everybody honest. Never have we witnessed the media so willing to forgo its purpose for the advancement of one man”

Let’s break out the chainsaws

“I want to give Speaker John Boehner the benefit of the doubt. Really, I do. But it’s hard when he fumbles the gimmes like he did in an interview with Brian Williams of NBC News.

Dude. You’re on national television and you can’t name one useless government program? Tell me again why we elected you Speaker?

I’m no career politician but I can come up with 5 things to cut without breaking a sweat.”

Eek! A male!

“Last week, the lieutenant governor of Massachusetts, Timothy Murray, noticed smoke coming out of a minivan in his hometown of Worcester. He raced over and pulled out two small children, moments before the van’s tire exploded into flames. At which point, according to the AP account, the kids’ grandmother, who had been driving, nearly punched our hero in the face.

Why?

Mr. Murray said she told him she thought he might be a kidnapper.”

January 14, 2011

Friday Hot Read – Michelle Malkin’s “Blame Righty: A condensed history”

by @ 9:20. Filed under Politics - National.

In her column today, Michelle Malkin outlined nine different episodes of violence from either leftists or non-partisan nuts originally blamed by the presstitutes, liberal activists (though we repeat ourselves), and Democrat politicians on the right. Read the column, and remember the close to the expanded introduction she includes on her blog:

The solution isn’t to “tone it down” and turn the other cheek, but to confront them forcefully with the facts — and to fight back unapologetically against insidious efforts to diminish the law-abiding, constitutionally-protected, peaceful, vigorous political speech and activism of the Right in the name of repressive “civility”.

January 13, 2011

The “New Tone”, Wisconsin edition

You probably heard that, after five days of smearing former Alaska governor Sarah Palin with the mass shooting at a Rep. Gabrielle Giffords constituent event, death threats against Palin are at an all time high. The “kill the Republicans” theme has hit Wisconsin, as WTMJ-TV reports several Republican officials, from Governor Scott Walker to Senator Ron Johnson to state Senator Alberta Darling, were the targets of a threat posted on Craigslist earlier this week by someone blaming them for the mass shooting.

I’m sure it’s completely unrelated to the first version of a Democratic Party of Wisconsin bumper sticker featuring a bullet train driving into Walker’s head, complete with spurting-blood graphics.

January 12, 2011

Social Security “Trust Fund” – 2010 in review

by @ 17:28. Filed under Social Security crater.

I know, it’s been too long since I did a wrap-up of the Social Security “Trust Funds”. However, we have final numbers from the Social Security Office of the Chief Actuary through November, and preliminary numbers from the Treasury Department for December, so it’s high time to do this.

Both the Disability Insurance (DI) “Trust Fund” and the Old-Age and Survivors (OASI) “Trust Fund” lost money on a primary (cash) basis in 2010. The OASI fund had a $15.9 billion primary deficit on $569.0 billion in tax revenue and $585.0 billion in total expenses, while the DI fund had a $32.9 billion primary deficit on $94.7 billion in tax revenue and $127.7 billion in expenses (note; the numbers will appear to be off due to rounding). Of note, before the Social Security Trustees admitted that the OASI fund would run a primary deficit in the 2010 Trustees Report, they did not anticipate in their “intermediate” estimations that it would run a primary deficit this early in any Trustees Report from at least 1997 onwards.

Once one adds in the $108.2 billion in interest “earned” by the OASI fund and the $9.3 billion in interest “earned” by the DI fund, the OASI fund had an increase in theoretical value to $2,429.1 billion (or $92.3 billion), while the DI fund had a decrease in theoretical value to $179.9 billion (or $23.66 billion).

How does that compare to the “intermediate” estimations in the last two Trustees Reports? In 2009, the Trustees estimated that the OASI fund would see a primary surplus of $42.1 billion and a fund value increase of $152.7 billion (to $2,502.2 billion from an estimated $2,349.6 billion in 2009 and an actual $2,202.9 billion in 2008) on taxes of $623.3 billion, interest of $110.6 billion, and total expenses of $581.2 billion. In 2010, that estimate changed to a primary deficit of $8.9 billion and a fund value increase of $99.9 billion (to $2,436.7 billion from an actual $2,336.8 billion in 2009) on taxes of $577.3 billion, interest of $108.9 billion, and total expenses of $586.2 billion.

For the DI fund, the Trustees estimated in 2009 that it would see a primary deficit of $23.7 billion and a fund value decrease of $14.3 billion (to $191.7 billion from an estimated $206.0 billion in 2009 and an actual $215.8 billion in 2008) on taxes of $104.4 billion, interest of $9.5 billion, and total expenses of $128.1 billion. In 2010, that estimate changed to a primary deficit of $32.4 billion and a fund value decrese of $23.2 billion (to $180.3 billion from an actual $203.5 billion in 2009) on taxes of $96.0 billion, interest of $9.3 billion, and expenses of $128.4 billion.

While costs have gone up a bit faster than expected, the primary driver of the earlier/faster collapse of Social Security has been the collapse of tax revenues, specifically payroll taxes, in the second year of the full-on POR (Pelosi-Reid-Obama) Economy. Since the full calendar-year 2010 numbers are not available from the Social Security Office of the Chief Actuary yet, and it is nigh impossible to accurately estimate the breakdown between payroll taxes and taxes on benefits using the Treasury’s Monthly Treasury Statement, I’m using the Fiscal Year numbers (which run from October 1 of the prior year to September 30 of the current year) from Social Security. In FY2008, Social Security took in $671.8 billion in payroll taxes and $17.8 billion in taxes on benefits for a total tax take of $689.6 billion. In FY2009, while the total tax take of $689.0 billion was hardly changed, the mix of payroll taxes and taxes on benefits radically changed, with payroll taxes dropping to $668.2 billion and taxes on benefits increasing to $20.8 billion. In FY2010, a further increase in taxes on benefits to $22.8 billion was overwhelmed by a drop in payroll taxes to $646.6 billion, as total taxes dropped to $669.4 billion.

For those who weren’t paying attention, FY2008 and much of FY2009 was declared to be in a “recession” period, while the end of FY2009 and the entirety of FY2010 was declared to be in a “post-recession” period of “recovery”.

Revisions/extensions (6:07 pm 1/12/2011) - I read off the wrong columns in my spreadsheet for the 2010 DI fund primary deficit and 2010 DI total expenses. The figures have been corrected.

January 11, 2011

If it’s the second Tuesday, New Year’s Edition

by @ 15:50. Tags:
Filed under Miscellaneous.

If you missed the Christmas Party Drinking Right, brush the snow off your car and make your way to Papa’s Social Club (7718 W Burleigh in Milwaukee) at 7 pm tonight and drink. Hell, if you made it two Sundays ago, come on down anyway.

The Ame…er, Holloway House of Happy Hacks is now open

by @ 12:29. Filed under Politics - Milwaukee County.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported yesterday that acting Milwaukee County Executive Lee Holloway has appointed Renee Booker, who ran the county’s child welfare division so ineptly that the state shut it down and took it over in 2001, and who was fired from his “make-work job” at the House of Corrections once Scott Walker got settled into office, as the head of the Department of Administrative Services. Booker, who overspent the child welfare division funds to the tune of $6 million, is now responsible for, among other things, purchases the county makes and contracts the county enters.

County Board Supervisor Lynne DeBruin, an opponent of the move and one of those who pushed for Booker’s firing back in 2001, noted that when then-County Board Chair Karen Ordinans and interim County Executive Janine Geske served as temporary County Executives after Tom Ament resigned in disgrace, neither person made any major appointments.

I wonder if it was the crookedness of Booker or his common skin tone with Holloway that attracted Holloway to Booker. Given Holloway’s nature, I’d have to guess both played major roles.

Video of the day – In the Crosshairs – In the Crosshairs

by @ 9:20. Filed under Politics - National.

Uncle Jimbo unloaded on the oh-so-”tolerant” Left with the latest In the Crosshairs (yes, there is a language warning – deal with it):

YouTube Preview Image

New course offering from the network that gave you “Fake but accurate”

by @ 7:36. Filed under Presstitute Follies.

Over at Ace of Spades HQ, Genghis ran with the latest bout of outright lying from CBS, the originator of Yellow Telejournalism with their almost-completely-successful smear of Audi. This time, “Professor” Couric introduces us for the very first time to Judy Clarke, defense attorney for Timothy McVeigh. Never mind that no other source has ever found that connection; it is an essential part of the Bullshit Constant.

January 10, 2011

Can’t We Do With One Less?

by @ 20:22. Filed under Politics - National.

I think it goes without saying that the events of this weekend were tragic.  Steve and Kevin have done a good job of laying out some of the double speak and self service that some on the left have used the events of this weekend for.  There is however, one reactive action that NRE hasn’t covered.

Rep. Bob Brady (D-PA) has introduced a bill that would criminalize the use of “threatening imagery” against lawmakers and judges. Rep. Brady is reacting to Sarah Palin’s website that had a cross hair shown over certain jurisdictions which had incumbent Democrat representatives that could be targeted for defeat.

Certainly, it is easy to agree that no one cares to see physical harm come to any elected official, regardless of their party affiliation. However, a move to ban “threatening imagery,” especially against politicians seems to allow entirely too much latitude for courts to interpret. After all, as you may have heard in last week’s reading of the Constitution, the First Amendment states:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech…

A couple of things to note about that amendment. First, the free speech issue was not geared towards our day to day speech as to whether we liked or disliked Oprah’s latest guest. The free speech reference was geared specifically towards political free speech. The Founder’s wanted the public to be able to express their satisfaction or dissatisfaction with their government. The latter was particularly important as one of the checks against a run away, out of touch, political elite.

The second thing to note is that the amendment doesn’t say “Congress can make some laws…” or “Congress can’t completely eliminate free speech.” No, it says “Congress shall make no laws.” Zero, zilch, nada, none.

Imagery, especially political imagery, should be jealously guarded. Like hate crime legislation, treading into what imagery is “right” or “wrong” requires the enforcer to know the mind of the “artist” and that just isn’t possible.

“War,” “Battle” and “Target” wording and imagery have been a part of political campaigns and imagery since before the nation was founded. If enacted, which of these images would the legislation limit?

The first known US political editorial cartoon?

This editorial at the start of the Civil War?

Or this editorial of President Bush?

I guess when you consider all the amendments we have to the Constitution we should be able to get by with at least one, or part of one less!

Monday Hot Read – Glenn Reynolds’ “The Arizona Tragedy and the Politics of Blood Libel”

by @ 8:43. Filed under Politics - National.

After a nearly-full weekend of leftist attempts to try to tie the shooter of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords/murderer of 6 people and everybody right of center while ignoring the planks in their eye (ably chronicled below by Kevin Fischer) , Glenn Reynolds unloads in today’s Wall Street Journal. I’ll cut to the quick:

To be clear, if you’re using this event to criticize the “rhetoric” of Mrs. Palin or others with whom you disagree, then you’re either: (a) asserting a connection between the “rhetoric” and the shooting, which based on evidence to date would be what we call a vicious lie; or (b) you’re not, in which case you’re just seizing on a tragedy to try to score unrelated political points, which is contemptible. Which is it?

understand the desperation that Democrats must feel after taking a historic beating in the midterm elections and seeing the popularity of ObamaCare plummet while voters flee the party in droves. But those who purport to care about the health of our political community demonstrate precious little actual concern for America’s political well-being when they seize on any pretext, however flimsy, to call their political opponents accomplices to murder.

Where is the decency in that?

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