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Monthly Archives: February 2014

 This morning Bob Schieffer on Face The Nation spoke of how Washington has even given up on existing agenda. That members of Congress on both sides have even given up pushing through their own ideas and have declared the year over with 10 out of 12 months to go. Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal (R) also had something to say about the future of the Republican party.

 Before one can begin to analyze the future of the Republican party, one must first discuss the future of this nation. Although the war between the parties that pinnacled late 90s and the first decade of the new century was not always a fixture in Washington, the inaction Mr. Schieffer speaks about has been the case since our nation was formed in 1789. With the Federalist Papers devising the prototype, inaction is supposed to be the norm. Our Founding Fathers drew up the Constitution and created the three branches of government with three separate powers and intentionally rigged the process we now refer to as American Democracy intentionally to make change possible, yet difficult. It is easy to complain about our elected officials and the inability to get things done, but my fellow Americans, careful what you wish for. You are not going to like it if Washington DC becomes a dynamo either.

 John Locke claimed with the exception of divine power, all power inevitably corrupts. All Senators, Congressmen, and the President are innately corrupt, as is every man and woman with the power of the spoken work is so. Politicians are not the only ones who will ultimately fall short of complete glorification of God and we turn to our religious institutions to preserve our souls to inherit the perfect world when our time is up. Ask yourself, would you rather have 536 corrupt people active or dormant? They must only act in the interest of the greater good and must respect the wishes of their constituency except when they are sure beyond a shadow of a doubt the constituency is embarking on a fatal mistake. It is important, not only those in Washington, but all American citizens with even an inkling of a vested interest in the future of America and its impact on their futures, look not to the corrupt politician, the elected official inevitably a variable, but first to the constants, the Constitution and the fact that our elected officials are empowered to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution first and foremost.

 Consistent with the Federalist Papers, the Constitution clearly defines the role of government to be limited. The corroboration that limited government is a quantity greater than zero comes from the fact that the Constitution’s predecessor, the Articles of Confederation, were an abysmal failure. This is undoubtedly a feather in the caps of fellow conservatives; I and am not talking to grass-roots and Tea Party Republican elected to office or running for office, I am talking to you the common man (or woman). Furthermore, our Founding Fathers, although far from perfect, were God-fearing people and chose IN GOD WE TRUST for a reason. This means anyone empowered to make policy or make laws must be absolutely sure no legislation in any way violates any of God’s principles.

 While it is easy to point fingers at those currently in power, the expansion of government in the United States predates any of us born after World War II. John Boehner and Ted Cruz are not wrong to fight against constantly raising the debt ceiling as every time we do it, we are promoting the sin of usury throughout the world and that is a slap in the face of God. But because we are stuck with big government we can no longer afford but are obligated not to leave Americans already dependent on them in the dust, we have no other choice and can only beg for God’s forgiveness in the end.

 Governor Jindal claims the Republican party got stupid because the defined themselves as the party of NO. I have said on several past blogs that there has to be a party of NOT YET until we can get a $17 Trillion deficit under control. This is where I tip my hat to the Louisiana governor because the Tea Party ideals are the best we have right now for achieving that result and the what this faction of the Republican party needs is an intelligent leader, not a retreat in ideals and principles. It also has to realize that its work is time-sensitive and there will be a time to invest in green energy, the environment, and of course, education in order for American to progress in the future. We do not change overhaul our personalities and views when the time comes for more progressive politics, we simply yield to progressive people and keep them in check as the loyal opposition. No man is an island and no democracy can endure if its law making mechanism is allowed to grow into a dynamo.

 As for the future of the Republican party, beginning with the future of America, is it has to decided if we are to be a two-party system or a three-party system. With the divided Republican party, we are a two-party system in title will inevitably evolve into a three-party system in practice. Prior to 1994 or so, it was tag, their it with respect to the Democrats maintaining the liberal faction and the dixie-crat faction, more conservative than those of us who called ourselves Ronald Reagan Republican back in the day. With Dixie power shifting to the Republican party in the mid 1990s and the emergence of the Tea Party, it is now tag, we’re it! A critical step is to take the best of each side, merge our ideas, and brand ourselves as one Republican party—let the Democrats be our loyal opposition and we will do the same for them in their time—the time of the balance budget. To keep the machine in motion at a productive, yet safe speed, there will be no urgency to create a dynamo which could lead to our demise as a nation.

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So I’ve been told, there are two kinds of people. Some say men are from Mars, women are from Venus—as far as I know neither planet has been known to support human life. There are the smart and the dumb—albeit I am not judging. Very important, there are honest and dishonest—we are more than within our rights to dismiss the dishonest once they show their true colors. Liberal vs. conservative; but there are also various shades of gray in between. But completely disjoint from gender, intelligent, and political views, there are compromising and uncompromising people. Both have a purpose.

I cannot judge myself but I believe I am compromising. My blog would sound a lot more like Limbaugh, Hannity, and the like if I weren’t. I realize there are some limitations on myself by being a compromising person, but I am what I am, according to Popeye The Sailor. But there is a need for uncompromising people in leadership roles as well.

An example of where this can come into play has to do with Obama’s proposal to increase fuel economy standards on new automobiles built after the year 2018—when he will be out of office. Obama and his fellow liberals are wise enough to know they will not get Republican votes in Congress on a bill that epitomizes the ultimate liberal prophesy and require all automobiles built in the United States and imported into the United States must get a minimum of 20 miles per gallon. So instead, the compromise is to phase in a manufacturing quota—for every four SUVs, luxury sedans, and muscle cars we build, we must build ten clown cars with lawn mower engines that at least 20 MPG. Sounds like a fair compromise, but there is one problem; the compromise, not the ultimate liberal legislation, will put automotive manufacturers out of business.

With the exception of the most altruistic motorists, maybe tree-huggers, maybe those concerned with Planet Earth running out of fossil fuel, people I respect, politics not withstanding, a large majority of Americans will favor the less economical vehicle choices. A majority of new car buyers will be gravitated to the more desirable less economical and the clown cars will sit on the dealers’ lots and rot. On the other hand, if the liberals win hands down and nothing can pass though that gets less than 20 MPG, GM, Ford, Crysler, and foreign automakers with stateside plants will do very well, because 20+MPGs will be the only choice other than used cars and walking to the train station or bus stop.

My step-grandfather worked in the advertising field most of his adult life and one of his first jobs was when the Holland Tunnel first opened for business. An advertising campaign was needed to get truck traffic to start using the tunnel. The truck drivers of that era (early 1920s) did not want to use the tunnel because waiting for the ferry was the perfect excuse to take a break. While the advertising campaign was unsuccessful, the ultimate elimination of ferry service forced trucks to cross the tunnel. The problem with the ultimate liberal prophesy is that it costs us freedom of choice and the one thing we should never compromise on, if the American Dream is ever going to be restored, is freedom—people have made the ultimate sacrifice to create and preserve a free country. For this reason, we need both compromising and uncompromising people in government—they both have their purpose

A combination of more desirable vehicles getting better mileage and the development of alternative and greener fuels is the way to go. While hybrid vehicles larger than the ever popular Toyota Prius or the plug-in Chevy Volt do not get that much better fuel economy than their all gas counterparts due to size and payloads, there are other alternatives such as hydrogen fuel cells and the development of cleaner greener and renewable sources for power plants making more disposable fuel readily available for vehicular transport makes much more sense than setting quotas for auto manufactures operating in our free enterprise system. For now, as a compromising person, I tip my hat to the uncompromising who are willing to hold their ground for America. Our time to compromise will come again soon enough.

Former South Carolina Senator and chief spokesperson for the Tea Party Jim DeMint was discussing the future of the two-faceted Republican Party with Bob Schieffer this morning. An interesting topic of discussion as we countdown to the 2016 election with Hillary Clinton (D) as the only probable candidate in either party at this time. But more important, what is the future of America with respect not only to divided government, but with insurmountable debt and trouble with Syria and a potential nuclear Iran.

While grass roots politicians on both sides of the aisle now praise speaker John Boehner ‘(R) for clearing the way to raise the debt ceiling so America can pay its bills, the real issue of our national debt reaching the point of no return is not addressed at all. Truth be told from now until the end of time, or as long as America exists as a free nation, raising the debt limit will always be a necessary evil and a Hobson’s choice. Even if a surplus is created someday, there is still the possibility of bills to pay greater than the size of the surplus. It was this way since the George Washington administration. Thomas Jefferson said it is simply [part of] the price we pay for freedom. This being the case, if there is any hope left of curing our $17 Trillion deficit, the act of raising the debt ceiling when the time comes must be, as mathematicians say, mutually excluded from any algorithm or calculating lemma toward achieving a balanced budget. Like saving for retirement, one cannot factor his or her monthly bills—unnecessary spending is the only controllable parameter.

Mr. DeMint chose to appear on Face The Nation because he was stranded in Washington due to the weather and could not get a flight back to South Carolina. Like myself, he is a proponent for limited government, which will drastically reduce the Federal Government’s obligation to spend money. In a decade where limited government has been perceived as a novel idea among a slight majority of Americans of all age groups, all political ideology, and all income classes, government spending continues to increase and The Affordable Health Care Act, an twenty-first century extension of FDR’s New Deal funded on IOUs from China, became the law of the land. There is a good reason for this; the operative word in limited government is limited, i.e., less than what it is now, but still greater than zero. One entity a limited government society does need and severely lacks in America—leadership. In so far as I respect and share Mr. DeMint’s ideology and vision of limited government, after listening to him speak, he is not a credible leader. Neither is John Boehner or Texas Senator Ted Cruz. Rick Sanotorum was one of the last people who could lead this nation under its current day duress, but it is unlikely he will run again in 2016. What we need is a George Washington or Thomas Jefferson devoid of slavery. There are many a good people in America who share our vision, but they just can’t lead.

 

As that point of no return on the Deficit Clock gets closer and closer, it is very important we elect the right person in 2016—even if it can’t be one of my favorite Republicans. I doubt that person’s name is Hillary Clinton and I think I could find some Democrats who agree with me. The remainder of Obama’s tenure and the next president and next two to three congresses will be a major determinant in what direction America will go and if the American Dream can be resurrected to its lofty status. It is time to drink from the fountains inherited from our Founding Fathers and for all good men to come to the aid of their parties and to the aid of the greatest nation God allowed to occupy Earth.

I learned last Thursday 02-06-2014 of the passing of Ralph Kiner. Ralph Kiner is in the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York as a slugger for the Pittsburgh Pirates (also Chicago Cubs and Cleveland Indians at the end of his career). Growing up in the late 60s and 70s, and as a young adult and enthusiastic Mets fan in the 80s, I remember Ralph for his 52 year tenure as broadcaster. When Mets home games were not over until the post-game interview with one or two players was concluded on WOR-TV’s Kiner’s Korner; corner intentionally spelled with a K as it was named for the leftfield wall at Forbes Field in Pittsburgh that was shortened by 30 feet during the Hank Greenberg (Greenberg Gardens)/Ralph Kiner era of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Ralph’s knowledge and stories he shared on Mets broadcasts, even in the final years when he was no longer part of the daily broadcast team was priceless and rare among modern broadcasters who have only read about it but were not there when it happened.

 As a youth, I spent time with my step-grandfather who lived from 1901-1977 and saw great ballplayers from Babe Ruth to Willie Mays to the very beginning of the free-agency era. The last four years my grandfather resided in Lakewood, New Jersey and whenever I went down to spend some time, I would bring my cardboard box containing the All Time All Star edition of Strat-o-matic baseball where we would see how The Babe would fare against Tom Seaver. Each of us would manage an all-time team of cardboard cards who would perform according to the role of the dice—the better players would have the better results on the more probable roles. After my grandfather’s passing in 1977, Ralph, although I never had the pleasure of knowing him personally, replaced my grandfather with respect to the stories about the players and teams of yesteryear I would hear on Mets telecasts. Not only has sports broadcasting gone a different direction with technology such as email and tweets replied to during the games, but there just aren’t many people still living that were born early enough to have it as a first-hand experience. I hope the Mets in cooperation with SNY who carries most Met games do him a special tribute.

 Ralph Kiner was indeed a celebrity, but he never let it get the best of him. He was one of the nicest people in the game of baseball and did a lot for the Mets and for Met fans. I did get his autograph in 1979 through a connection involving my late father and a state representative in Greenwich who knew him. Only an old-time usher, Pete Flynn, head groundskeeper emeritus, and Ralph Kiner have been employed with the organization long enough to work at all three homes, the Polo Grounds, Shea Stadium, and Citi Field. Ralph, I pray that the ballpark in Heaven has a short porch in leftfield for an eternity of home runs. Play ball!