Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Yes, my friends, there has been a movement for a number of years for the politic elite to rule the world. Many of the elite think their time is now. And they think their candidate is ready.
Many of you have been blindly led into the beliefs you now hold because you have trusted the same media that your parents and grandparents trusted. And yet, that very same media has been working diligently to gain your trust even though they had to lie to attain it. And, and you believed those lies; although unknowingly.
A few of us believe in an ideology that is pure American; neither Democrat nor Republican but truly conservative. For those of you old enough to remember President John F. Kennedy he was a Democrat but in today's world he would be a Republican Conservative...it's the ideology and not the party - remember that!
As we get closer to election day you should think very hard about your choice; it may be your last.
Remember too, from whence we came. Hard working, independent, capitalists that for the most part were very conservative. Liberalism did not a country make!
With that said, I would make this last request of you. A good friend and solid American friend by the cyber space name of Snooper has written a very thoughtful commentary What Do You Tell The Demons at the link provided below. Please read without your political party looking over your shoulder.
Thank you. Norman E. Hooben
And let this be a reminder...
The day socialism comes to America
Posted: February 17, 2008
1:00 am Eastern
Norman Thomas, American socialist
- "The American people will never knowingly adopt socialism, but under the name of liberalism they will adopt every fragment of the socialist program until one day America will be a socialist nation without ever knowing how it happened."
– Norman Thomas, American socialist
I've been thinking deeply about those famously prophetic words spoken by America's premier socialist thinker and leader.
They didn't resonate in the 1940s when Franklin Roosevelt, in the name of ending the Depression, exceeded all constitutional authority by approving new federal assistance programs.
They seemed a bit far-fetched to most of us in the 1960s when Lyndon Johnson vastly expanded the welfare state in his failed bid to end poverty in America.
They still didn't connect in the 1970s when Richard Nixon, in a bid to ingratiate himself with Democrats in Congress and stave off an impeachment, greatly increased spending on wealth-redistribution schemes.
And by the 1980s, with Ronald Reagan in power, it seemed this 40-year trend had finally been reversed.
But with the initiatives being proposed by Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in the 2008 presidential campaign, it appears Norman Thomas was right all along. Americans will, indeed, embrace every fragment of the socialist program in the name of liberalism.
Both of the leading Democrats call for nationalized health care – for a power grab by Washington in which the federal government will seize full control of another one-seventh of the U.S. economy.
This would, of course, be the most dramatic and irreversible step toward U.S. socialism in the nation's history.
Even today, however, the architects of these plans conceal from the public the centralized, command-and-control nature of the new system they devise.
They are not asked by the press to show the American people even one successful program government has run. Yet the American people seem ready to put the lives of their children and grandchildren in the hands of Washington bureaucrats.
Now comes an even grander proposal by Barack Obama. It's called the Global Poverty Act, that would, in the next decade, transfer at least $845 billion of U.S. taxpayer money overseas. Think of Johnson's failed war on poverty going international – directed not by Americans but by the United Nations.
How we could even be debating ideas like this in the 21st century, after all of the climactic failures of socialism around the world, is amazing to me. But we're not really debating them. It seems we're not even capable as a people of debating them, reasoning over them, using our brains to consider them.
Americans may simply be too far gone spiritually, morally and intellectually to reject the temptations of socialism.
Socialism is antithetical to human nature, yet it has great appeal to the human mind.
It's one of the great lies of all time – similar to the one told by the deceiver in the Garden of Eden. You can be like God! You can have it all right here on Earth. You can live in utopia, and you don't have to obey the laws of the universe to achieve it.
That's the essence of socialism. And it is finally seducing America as it has seduced much of the rest of the world over the last century.
Unfortunately, Americans don't even have a party representing clear, unequivocal opposition to socialism. The Republicans dare not even speak its name. John McCain admits publicly he doesn't know much or care much about economics.
And so, Americans don't even have a reason or a mechanism to say no to the socialism that is coming to their country under the guise of liberalism – just the way Norman Thomas predicted it would come.
Money-grabbing Michelle claims Obama's "message is one of inclusion"; charges FIVE HUNDRED BUCKS for a photo with her
Delivering her husband's message of change, Michelle Obama starred Thursday at what's thought to be Southwest Florida's largest Democratic event in modern times.
Almost 600 people jammed the Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre to hear Michelle Obama, wife of presumptive Democratic nominee Barack, deliver a 21-minute speech, preceded by breakfast, and a photo session with each of about 100 major donors.
Organizers said the event raised about $200,000, not only from admission that started at $100 - a $500 check got the donor a photo with Michelle Obama and a chance to say a few words as the picture was taken - but from those who wrote additional checks after hearing her speech.
"She's so eloquent, and you can tell she speaks from the heart," said Dena Geraghty of Fort Myers. "She has that gift of making you feel like an old friend, like she is truly interested in what you have to say. And of course, what she has to say is so important for the whole country."
At the start of her speech, Michelle Obama acknowledged the death of Fort Myers policeman Andrew Widman, saying she and her husband "honor his service and commitment to protect this community. ... Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends," she said.
She then spoke about her own family, how thankful she is for her mother's help while she does limited traveling, always planning to be home in Chicago by late afternoon when their daughters come home from school or summer camp.
Most of Michelle Obama's appearances are one-day trips, campaign staff said, although on this visit, she was in Orlando and Miami on Wednesday other fundraisers. She stayed overnight in Miami Beach, then flew to Fort Myers, and flew home immediately after her speech.
She talked about her first date with Obama, when he wooed her by taking her to see his work with a lower-income community, organizing for better schools and better jobs.
And she talked about her initial refusal when her husband first approached her with his plans to run for president.
"I was afraid," she said, saying she was concerned about the effect on the family. "But then I thought about the world I want to leave for our children. This race isn't about us. It's about them."
Barack Obama is working for a vision of "America as it should be," she repeated throughout her speech. It's as country "where any American who's willing to work hard can earn a decent living for their family; where folks won't go bankrupt just because someone gets sick; where all of our children have access to world-class public education .... That's the world Barack Obama is fighting for."...
Southwest Florida's voter rolls are dominated by Republicans - 137,018 to 87,692 Democrats in Lee - and for years Democratic candidates have generally ceded this part of Florida to the GOP. But the Obama campaign - aided by record-breaking fundraising success - is reaching out to such areas far more than campaigns of the past, said Adrianne Marsh, a spokeswoman for Obama's Florida campaign.
"You're going to see Obama in a lot of places where you may not have seen many Democratic candidates in the past," she said. "His message is one of inclusion, and his policies resonate with people. So we're taking that message to some nontraditional" campaign locations.
Fort Myers Mayor Jim Humphrey, another prominent Republican, gave Michelle Obama the key to the city. She thanked Humphrey from the stage for his warm welcome.
While there was no mingling other than the interaction during photos - which subjects were told would be posted on the Internet - and no question-and-answer session, no one in the crowd seemed to complain.
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
By Henry Lamb
July 29, 2008
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told CNN that she would block any vote to allow offshore drilling. This remarkable stance comes in the face of the latest poll that says 73 percent of Americans favor offshore drilling, while only 27 percent oppose it. Nancy Pelosi again displays her contempt for her employer, the American people. Her arrogance and wrong-headed philosophy have led Congress to an approval rating of a staggering 14 percent, the lowest ever.
The arguments she advances in defense of her position are, at best, silly, and at worst, devious. She says she will not allow additional reserves to be drilled because oil companies already hold leases on 68 million acres of federal land that are not being drilled. She ignores the testimony of oil company representatives who tell her that had they found oil under these lands, they would be pumping it. The oil companies need to drill where the oil is.
There is plenty of oil to drill. Known reserves offshore, in Alaska, the Bakken fields of North Dakota and Montana, and elsewhere, can meet the energy demand for at least 100 years. But Pelosi and her colleagues don't want this oil produced. Pelosi says that it will take 10 years for this new oil supply to reach the pump, and then, it would reduce the price by only two-cents per gallon. This price projection is pure fiction.
As an alternative, she says the president should release 70 million barrels of oil from the strategic reserves, which would provide immediate price relief. Is this silly, stupid, or just more of Pelosi's political doublespeak? This alternative would supply less than four days of the U.S. demand, which would not likely even be noticed at the pump. It would do nothing to solve the underlying problem of too little supply.
Pelosi, like Al Gore, wants to end America's reliance on oil, and switch to new, exotic, yet-to-be-developed energy sources such as wind, solar, hydrogen, and in particular, electric cars. America has been investing heavily in research in all these areas for years. Some significant progress has been made. No one in their right mind -- which includes Al Gore -- can think this new technology can be available within the next ten years, with enough distribution to make hydrogen filling stations and recharging for electric cars viable options. It is certain, however, that by developing known oil reserves, the U.S. energy demand can be met in 10 years, or less.
There is a big disconnect between the rush to convert automobiles to batteries, and the reality that the electricity to recharge those batteries would require a massive new generating capacity. The same flawed excuse of "protecting the environment," has also blocked the expansion of electricity generating capacity. If the self-appointed gods of environmental protection won't allow the expansion of electricity generation, how are the batteries of all these new electric vehicles going to be recharged every night?
Another major disconnect between the rush to replace oil with renewable sources such as wind and solar is the negative environmental impact of these renewable technologies. For example, to replace a single 50-megawatt coal-fired generating plant, which may occupy as much as 20 acres of land, approximately 3,000 acres of land would have to be occupied by wind turbines. To produce 50-megawatts of electricity from solar panels would virtually cover even more land. How can these protectors of the environment justify blanketing the land with whirling bird-killers and solar panels that block the sun from all forms of life beneath them?
Some environmental purists genuinely want America and the world to return to the stone-age. Nancy Pelosi is no environmental purist. She is a political creature, which is a person so intoxicated by power that the instinct to retain and expand it overwhelms common sense, logic, ethics, morality, or anything else that might get in the way.
By her refusal to even allow debate on proposals to expand oil development -- where oil is known to exist -- she stands like a barricade between thirsty consumers and a new mountain stream. She apparently sees herself as a self-appointed savior; she is, in truth, acting as judge and jury, condemning a nation desperate for more energy to spiraling energy costs for possibly another generation.
This is not a new posture for Democrat leadership. Democrats in the House, the Senate, and the White House have blocked expansion of oil supplies for more than a decade. Had Bill Clinton not vetoed the bill that would have opened the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge more than a decade ago, gas prices would not be as high as they are today. Millions of jobs would have been created, and every American could have saved the money needlessly paid to foreign sources for oil, simply because one man played God and defied the express will of the people.
Nancy Pelosi is now playing God, standing where Bill Clinton stood more than a decade ago, defying the expressed will of the people by blocking access to the known oil reserves that are so desperately needed by the entire nation.
You had us fooled with sub-prime mortgages and now the ole slight of hand trick...aah, let's see...we'll just rename it a big fat CDO. Now that doesn't sound too bad, now does it? Doesn't have that ring of DEBT sound to it. Oh, now how did we get here in the first place? Was it by offering such nifty financing? Twenty-two cents on the dollar! What's in your wallet?
Will the last sucker out of Merrill Lynch please shut off the light. Thank you. - Storm'n Norm'n
Merrill to sell $8.5 bln stock after big write-down
By Christian Plumb and Jonathan Stempel
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Merrill Lynch & Co said on Monday it will take a $5.7 billion third-quarter write-down as it unloads huge amounts of risky debt, and will raise $8.5 billion by selling new stock.
The Wall Street investment bank and brokerage announced its plans less than two weeks after posting a $4.9 billion second- quarter loss, hit by $9 billion of write-downs in that period.
In a sign of how toxic Merrill's debt holdings have become, it has agreed to sell $30.6 billion of collateralized debt obligations (CDOs), a kind of repackaged debt, to an affiliate of private equity fund Lone Star Funds, for just $6.7 billion, or about 22 cents on the dollar.
The fire sale nature of that deal will add to concerns that the global credit crisis, which has already led to more than $400 billion of write-downs and losses at major banks, still has a long way to run.
"What is happening to Merrill and others is death by a thousand cuts. It's painful to see it happen over and over again," said Daniel Alpert, managing director at investment bank Westwood Capital.
Merrill said its stock sale, which includes a $3.4 billion purchase by Singapore's state-run Temasek Holdings, may grow to $9.8 billion. Management also plans to buy 750,000 shares, it said.
Monday's write-down and plans to raise capital may raise further questions about the ability of John Thain, who only became Merrill's CEO in December following the ouster of Stanley O'Neal, to turn around the firm.
The company has lost $19.2 billion in the past year and suffered more than $40 billion of write-downs from subprime mortgages and other risky debt. Its shares sank 11.6 percent in New York Stock Exchange trading ahead of the announcement and are now less than a third of their value a year ago.
The stock was little changed at $24.35 in after-hours electronic trading after dropping $3.19 to $24.33 in regular trading.
Analysts were quick to cut forecasts for Merrill, with Banc of America lowering its price target to $40 a share from $47, and Credit Suisse widening its loss per share estimate to $12.70 from a former view of a loss of $7.
"Are things that much worse than we were led to believe?" said James Ellman, president of Seacliff Capital in San Francisco. "If people were going to believe Thain when he said Merrill raised more capital than it needed to and had taken conservative marks on its securities book, I'm not sure they're going to believe him tomorrow morning."
On a July 17 conference call, Thain said: "Right now we believe we are in a very comfortable spot in terms of our capital." He has made a series of similar comments over the past seven months.
The most recent round of capital raising was particularly bruising because of provisions Merrill agreed to when it raised money in December and January. Essentially, the investment bank said it would give the investors in those raisings extra compensation if it later issued equity at a lower price.
That meant that in this offering, more than half the shares or share proceeds will go to prior investors, with $2.5 billion paid to compensate Temasek, and another $2.4 billion paid as additional dividends to investors in convertible securities.
Temasek agreed to invest the $2.5 billion in the new offering, as a large part of its purchase of $3.4 billion of common stock in this deal.
The Lone Star deal will result in a $4.4 billion write-down for Merrill and it will finance about 75 percent of the purchase price, Merrill said.
Merrill also said it agreed to help bail out bond insurer Security Capital Assurance Ltd by agreeing to accept a $500 million cash payment in exchange for canceling some credit default swaps and ending related litigation.
Merrill said the settlement, together with the potential settlement of other CDO hedges, will result in a $1.3 billion write-down.
Earlier this month, Merrill completed the sale of its 20 percent stake in Bloomberg LP, the news and financial data company, to Bloomberg Inc for $4.43 billion. Merrill also said then it was in talks to sell a controlling interest in a unit that provides services to mutual funds, in a deal that values the entire unit at $3.5 billion.
Assuming Merrill sells shares at its Monday closing price in the new offering, Temasek would have about 140 million new shares in Merrill. When combined with its prior holdings, it would have 226.645 million Merrill shares.
If this new offering leaves Merrill with about 1.528 billion shares, Temasek would own about 15 percent of Merrill, which may raise some concerns among U.S. politicians about the level of foreign ownership at one of the nation's best-known banks.
Temasek previously informally agreed to refrain from owning more than 10 percent of Merrill, according to a source familiar with the fund. A Temasek spokeswoman said on Tuesday that a portion of the deal is subject to regulatory approval.
Merrill declined to comment on specifics of the stock offering, such as the price. The company's market value was about $24 billion as of Monday's close, based on reported shares outstanding.
Given that Merrill's retail brokerage business has been estimated by analysts to be worth at least $25 billion, while its near-50 percent stake in asset management company BlackRock Inc is worth about $13 billion, its investment banking business has an implied negative value.
Merrill Lynch agreed in January to sell about $6.6 billion of mandatory convertible preferred securities. Investors in about $5.4 billion of those convertibles have agreed to exchange their securities for about 195 million shares of preferred shares, Merrill announced on Monday. The other investors agreed to exchange their securities into a new mandatory convertible preferred security.
In Seoul, Korea Investment Corp (KIC) said it converted $2 billion worth of preferred Merrill shares into common stock.
Despite the latest write-downs, Merrill still has wide exposure to mortgage debt.
As of June 27, it said it had exposures of $33.7 billion to U.S. prime mortgages, $1.01 billion to U.S. subprime mortgages, $1.54 billion to "Alt-A" mortgages and $7.45 billion to non- U.S. residential mortgages.
William Smith, president of Smith Asset Management Inc in New York, said Merrill fetched a "horrendous" price for the CDOs in the sale announced on Monday.
"The problem here is with Thain. You can throw him into the credibility problem camp now," Smith said. "It's tough to call the bottom on these things because it seems like it's never ending, but this could be viewed as the watershed."
(Additional reporting by Doris Frankel in CHICAGO; Jonathan Spicer, Dan Wilchins and Lilla Zuill in NEW YORK; Kevin Lim and Louise Heavens in SINGAPORE and Kim Yeon-hee in SEOUL; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe, Andre Grenon & Ian Geoghegan)
Now make the connection to this: (see story below...I'm testing your worldly knowledge) Storm'n Norm'n
Monday, July 28, 2008
Obama and ACORN:
Black Voters Caught in Voter Registration Fraud In Virginia
Posted by admin July 28, 2008
Sunday, July 27, 2008
"We hope our brother will take pride in his Muslim faith."