Thursday, September 25, 2008

Give the "bailout" to everyone else - not Wall Street

A friend of mine (Thanks Amy!) emailed this to me today. I thought it was great. It's exactly what I was thinking too. Screw Wall Street. If can give this kind of money out, give to to everyone else for a change. Talk about a shot in the arm for the economy. Kind of like a giant Reset button on debt. What is so wrong with this idea anyway? Of course I am not an economist and I am sure the math might be a little off here, but I don't see the problem with at least considering it. I can't tell you how great it would be to be able to pay off our student loans and our credit card debt.
A nice little something that came across from a mindful co-worker....a pass along to him... in turn a pass along to all of you!

I'm against the $85,000,000,000.00 bailout of AIG.


Instead, I'm in favor of giving $85,000,000,000 to America in a We Deserve It Dividend.

To make the math simple, let's assume there are 200,000,000 bonafide U.S. Citizens 18+.

Our population is about 301,000,000 +/- counting every man, woman and child. So 200,000,000 might be a fair stab at adults 18 and up..

So divide 200 million adults 18+ into $85 billon that equals $425,000.00.

My plan is to give $425,000 to every person 18+ as a We Deserve It Dividend.

Of course, it would NOT be tax free. So let's assume a tax rate of 30%. Every individual 18+ has to pay $127,500.00 in taxes. That sends $25,500,000,000 right back to Uncle Sam. But it means that every adult 18+ has $2 97,500.00 in their pocket. A husband and wife has $595,000.00.

What would you do with $297,500.00 to $595,000.00 in your family?
  • Pay off your mortgage – housing crisis solved.
  • Repay college loans – what a great boost to new grads
  • Put away money for college – it'll be there
  • Save in a bank – create money to loan to entrepreneurs.
  • Buy a new car – create jobs
  • Invest in the market – capital drives growth
  • Pay for your parent's medical insurance – health care improves
  • Enable Deadbeat Dads to come clean – or else

Remember this is for every adult U S Citizen 18+ including the folks who lost their jobs at Lehman Brothers and every other company that is cutting back. And of course, for those serving in our Armed Forces.

If we're going to re-distribute wealth let's really do it...instead of trickling out a puny $1000.00 ( "vote buy" ) economic incentive that is being proposed by one of our candidates for President.

If we're going to do an $85 billion bailout, let's bail out every adult U S Citizen 18+!

As for AIG – liquidate it. Sell off its parts. Let American General go back to being American General. Sell off the real estate. Let the private sector bargain hunters cut it up and clean it up.

Here's my rationale. We deserve it and AIG doesn't.

Sure it's a crazy idea that can "never work." But can you imagine the Coast-To-Coast Block Party!

How do you spell Economic Boom?
I trust my fellow adult Americans to know how to use! the $85 Billion We Deserve It Dividend more than I do the geniuses at AIG or in Washington DC . And remember, The Birk plan only really costs $59.5 Billion because $25.5 Billion is returned instantly in taxes to Uncle Sam.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

A sinking feeling about University Town Centre

This is a few days old, but I just realized I had left the tab open in FF with this story because I wanted to post about it.  The State Journal resported last week that Target is suing the developers of University Town Centre because the store has sunk FIVE inches in the last three years. 
Target Sues UTC Developers
The store says its Granville location has sunk five inches.
MORGANTOWN -- Target Corporation is suing the developers of the University Town Centre in Granville.
Read the rest of the story in The State Journal
What I've been wondering is - what will happen next?  A lawsuit ain't gonna fix the fact that that hillside is totally screwed.  We were up there on the 4th of July to watch fireworks and Steve talked to a guy who was there as security to keep people out of the field next to Hollywood Cinemas because of sinkholes.  I'm not kidding.  The guy said that there was a man who had driven behind the theater one afternoon (to apparently smoke a doobie before a movie). They had to come a rescue him because the his truck sunk up to the windows and he couldn't get out.  The guy said the field is full of sinkholes.  They've apparently brought in "experts" to try to find a way to fix the problems, but there don't seem to be any. 

Now don't get me wrong, I LOVE the stores they have brought to town.  I am a huge Target fan and buying clothes for Kira and Piper at Old Navy is great.  I just don't understand why they can build there in the first place if there are freaking sinkholes up there.  What gives??? 

I suppose it's no skin off my nose, so why should I care?  I will care if in a few years that entire develpoment is a ghost town of waste and all the awesome shopping opportunities have left Morgantown because corporate thinks it is too close to Washington/Pittsburgh and Fairmont to locate there.  [I'm totally guessing here, I don't understand why it is so hard for Morgantown to get a greater variety of stores for a city of its size and importance to the surrounding areas.]

I also care that Mon County has no zoning.  It is ridiculous.  In this day and age for a place growing as fast as Morgantown to not have zoning is incredibly short-sighted. 

I live in Preston County, but I work in Mon County.  I am not even sure if Preston has any kind of planning going on - so don't get me started on how far in the past this county is. I complain about it, but I love living here.  I just know it can be better and it should be.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Barack on the Economy

He's very clear about where he stands on economic solutions. If one more small business person tells me Democrats are bad for business I'm going to scream. It is categorically untrue and not based on fact. Republicans are bad for your business because all they care about is the super-wealthy corporations and government staying out of the way while they run roughshod over us. Regulation keeps things from melting down like they did in 1929 and are starting to now. TRICKLE DOWN ECONOMICS DOES NOT WORK. It only consolidates power and money to a select few. Additionally, it does not help small businesses. It hurts them. Period. It helps corporations. If you want to work for MegaWalMartGEHalliburton, Inc. then I guess trickle down makes sense. If you want to work for yourself, get your head out of your ass and support economic policies that keep corporations in check so other people can compete.

Obama wants to eliminate capital gains taxes for small business and start-ups. Sounds good to me.

YouTube - Ben Walker - You're No One If You're Not On Twitter

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Obama and The Palin Effect

Obama and The Palin Effect

From: Deepak Chopra | Posted: Friday, September 5th, 2008

Sometimes politics has the uncanny effect of mirroring the national psyche even when nobody intended to do that. This is perfectly illustrated by the rousing effect that Gov. Sarah Palin had on the Republican convention in Minneapolis this week. On the surface, she outdoes former Vice President Dan Quayle as an unlikely choice, given her negligent parochial expertise in the complex affairs of governing. Her state of Alaska has less than 700,000 residents, which reduces the job of governor to the scale of running one-tenth of New York City. By comparison, Rudy Giuliani is a towering international figure. Palin’s pluck has been admired, and her forthrightness, but her real appeal goes deeper.

She is the reverse of Barack Obama, in essence his shadow, deriding his idealism and exhorting people to obey their worst impulses. In psychological terms the shadow is that part of the psyche that hides out of sight, countering our aspirations, virtue, and vision with qualities we are ashamed to face: anger, fear, revenge, violence, selfishness, and suspicion of “the other.” For millions of Americans, Obama triggers those feelings, but they don’t want to express them. He is calling for us to reach for our higher selves, and frankly, that stirs up hidden reactions of an unsavory kind.
(Just to be perfectly clear, I am not making a verbal play out of the fact that Sen. Obama is black. The shadow is a metaphor widely in use before his arrival on the scene.)

I recognize that psychological analysis of politics is usually not welcome by the public, but I believe such a perspective can be helpful here to understand Palin’s message. In her acceptance speech Gov. Palin sent a rousing call to those who want to celebrate their resistance to change and a higher vision.

Look at what she stands for:

–Small town values — a denial of America’s global role, a return to petty, small-minded parochialism.

–Ignorance of world affairs — a repudiation of the need to repair America’s image abroad.

–Family values — a code for walling out anybody who makes a claim for social justice. Such strangers, being outside the family, don’t need to be heeded.

–Rigid stands on guns and abortion — a scornful repudiation that these issues can be negotiated with those who disagree.

–Patriotism — the usual fallback in a failed war.

–”Reform” — an italicized term, since in addition to cleaning out corruption and excessive spending, one also throws out anyone who doesn’t fit your ideology.

Palin reinforces the overall message of the reactionary right, which has been in play since 1980, that social justice is liberal-radical, that minorities and immigrants, being different from “us” pure American types, can be ignored, that progressivism takes too much effort and globalism is a foreign threat. The radical right marches under the banners of “I’m all right, Jack,” and “Why change? Everything’s OK as it is.” The irony, of course, is that Gov. Palin is a woman and a reactionary at the same time.
She can add mom to apple pie on her resume, while blithely reversing forty years of feminist progress. The irony is superficial; there are millions of women who stand on the side of conservatism, however obviously they are voting against their own good. The Republicans have won multiple national elections by raising shadow issues based on fear, rejection, hostility to change, and narrow-mindedness.

Obama’s call for higher ideals in politics can’t be seen in a vacuum. The shadow is real; it was bound to respond. Not just conservatives possess a shadow — we all do. So what comes next is a contest between the two forces of progress and inertia. Will the shadow win again, or has its furtive appeal become exhausted? No one can predict. The best thing about Gov. Palin is that she brought this conflict to light, which makes the upcoming debate honest. It would be a shame to elect another Reagan, whose smiling persona was a stalking horse for the reactionary forces that have brought us to the demoralized state we are in. We deserve to see what we are getting, without disguise.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Pam Anderson: Sarah Palin

Normally I don't give a rat's ass what Pam Anderson thinks, but I think she said it best here about Sarah Palin.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Contact Gov. Manchin ASAP

Repost from WVaBlue

Paging Gov. Manchin: stop Blankenship's shenanigans

by: Carnacki

Tue Sep 09, 2008 at 13:55:14 PM EDT

From an email:
Help us ask WV Governor Manchin for "stay of execution" for Coal River Mountain
Hey Folks,
The residents of the Coal River Valley in West Virginia urgently need your help.  While we thought we had months to stop the proposed Mountaintop Removal coal mining operation for Coal River Mountain, the coal company - Massey Energy - circumvented the law and altered their permits, and are set to begin blasting the mountain for coal TOMORROW, September 10th.  If they are allowed to proceed, the blasting will eliminate some of the potential for the production of clean wind energy and creation of good, green jobs on Coal River Mountain, and it will be harder for local residents to stop the continuation of the mining once it has started.  So, we need your help.
Could you call Governor Manchin, today, and ask him to issue a "stay of execution" for Coal River Mountain?  He already knows that there is a real alternative to Mountaintop Removal here, and he knows it is the better option, now he needs to hear it from you!  He needs to know that the state and the nation are watching him, and that you know that the decision is HIS to make.  The Coal River Mountain Wind Project is such a great alternative that it was awarded Co-Op America's "Building Economic Alternatives" Award, and is also being highlighted for the national Green Jobs Now! Day of Action on September 27th.  But without your help, all of this will be lost for short-term, destructive coal mining.

Please pass this around to your friends, family, colleagues and email lists.  The louder the voice, the better the chance of stopping the blasting.  YOU can help by:
Watching the Online video to see what's is at stake.  This home page and the rest of the website will also give you more information about the campaign, and presents a comparison between the benefits of Wind Power versus Mountaintop Removal coal mining. 
Sign the Petition!

Pass Around the Press Release to your local media -  Available on our media page.

Come to the Rally on September 16th -  Information about the rally is available on the website.  Please come support the residents of the Coal River Valley, and the creation of a new, clean economy and Green Jobs for West Virginia and the nation.

Calling Governor Manchin Today!!  His phone number is 1-888-438-2731, and an example call message is available below.

Email Governor Manchin!  It's easy.   Just go to www.CoalRiverWind.org and let him know how you feel
Governor Manchin, I am asking you to support the Coal River Wind Farm and halt blasting until you can look into this opportunity further. Massey Energy has issued notice for blasting at the site to begin tomorrow (Wednesday, September 10). Community members have requested for weeks that you put a freeze on the mountaintop removal mine and give citizens of West Virginia a chance to save Coal River Mountain.
Many people across southern West Virginia and across the United States were excited to learn recently that you are planning to make your case for renewable energy development in your upcoming "State of the State" speech, and that you have been publicly supporting the development of renewable energy in West Virginia in various speeches. During your 2008 State of the State address you pointed out "that the main ingredient to a successful energy future is sustainability" and encouraged the development of renewable energy like wind and solar. For this reason we hope you will be supportive of this landmark opportunity to put West Virginia on the renewable energy map.
Coal River Mountain in West Virginia has enough wind potential to provide electricity for over 150,000 homes and create 50 well-paying, good jobs, forever.   The proposed wind farm would  also help diversify the local economy in an area historically dependent upon sparse, temporary coal mining jobs. This opportunity depends upon the mountain being left intact.
We feel you could do no better than to highlight Coal River Mountain, and to lend your full support for the development of a utility-scale wind farm as an economically viable alternative to Massey's proposed 6,000+ acre mountaintop removal operation that is currently planned for the mountain.
By supporting this project, you will show both the state and the nation that you are truly committed to diversifying West Virginia's energy portfolio, and that you are willing to make tough choices in order to ensure the future of energy production and strong economy for the state and nation.
Citizens everywhere are concerned about the state of our economy and rising energy prices. Recent estimates produced by the U.S. Geologic Survey show that West Virginia has only 20-30 more years at which current levels of coal production in West Virginia can be maintained, so the time to begin developing these alternative energy sources is now, for as remaining coal runs out, the price of electricity will skyrocket.
However, we have a new and better option, and we are asking that you lend your full support for this project based on its long-term economic, social and environmental benefits, especially as they compare positively to the short-term benefits and long-term costs that will result from proposed strip-mining operations.
Governor Manchin, the choice is yours, and we hope that you make the right one - for the residents of Coal River Mountain, for West Virginia, and for the nation.
Sincerely,
[Your Name]
[Your Hometown, State]
Thank you for all of your help and support,
With Great Appreciation,
Lorelei Scarbro, Rory McIlmoil and the rest of the Coal River Mountain Wind Team

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Mark it with a K (and P) for Kira, Piper, and me!

I made a blueberry pie a few weeks ago. We had amazing blueberries this year. Though the crust burned a little on the edges, the K & P was a thing of beauty. Tasted great too, if I do say so myself!