Monday, January 19, 2009

Bush Got It Half Right Today!

Today as one of Presidents George W Bush's last acts, he commuted the prison sentences of former US Border Patrol Agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean for the shooting of a illegal alien who in addition to his border crimes was also a drug runner and all around "SCUMBAG". What I meant by half right is that if President Bush wanted to do this right, he should have given them full pardons or better yet stopped the over zealous Assistant US Attorney that put them there. I'm not so mad about this that I can't see that there is true and clear evidence that they screwed up, but lets be realistic, they probably should have been suspended without pay or even outright termination of position, but 10 yrs in prison? Law Enforcement officers at the Federal, State, and Local levels, all have a few things in common such as they are rarely if ever paid what there worth, they often work longer hrs than scheduled, they are outgunned and some cases out equipped, and frequently work in environmental circumstances that most people would avoid at all costs, the latter especially true in the case of the Border Agents. In addition to the previously mentioned items, the stress and danger levels that these brave people face every day is beyond what most could ever understand. I guess the part that really irritates me about this whole mess is that Law Enforcement officers and EMS employees in general have to make spilt second judgement calls in horrific circumstances. Then to be second guessed by some federal prosecutor who took months at his pace to evaluate the information and whose closest experience to the kind of stress Border Patrol Agents deal with everyday was the paper cut he received while looking through US Code books on how to best screw the two agents.
The treatment of these two Agents was so bad that it created a bi-partisan effort to get them out of prison and was a campaign issue for CA Congressman Duncan Hunter who stated that if he won the Presidency, his first official act would be to give both Agents full pardons.

I'm not saying that these men or anyone else regardless of position is above the law, however the standard must be fair and in this case I don't believe that it was.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Poll question response

The response to the most recent poll question was so poor, I'm not even going to state the results. I guess none of you liked the question, so I will try to come up with a better one.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Internet Web Tax Police

I get my TV from Dish Network (no local channels), the only newspaper I read is Human events, and I listen to Sirus Satellite radio, so needless to say I don't get a lot of local news and for the most part, I'm fine with that as when I do read the local papers, I'm usually unimpressed. Yankee Philip recently told me about something he read in the News Leader paper about Internet tax for VA. He provided me the page with the story on it and yes folks there it was in black and white. The story states that all purchasers are required by law to pay tax on non-food purchases in VA and to report and pay at tax time for those purchases where tax was not collected at the time of the transaction which largely means Internet sales. Needless to say most people don't report these purchases to their accountants or report them on their annual tax returns.

If this is a new concept to you or you've wondered how this is determined, here it is in a nutshell. I'll use examples because I think it's easier to explain it that way. Ex. 1: you buy a cordless DeWalt drill at Home Depot one online and another via their web site, do you pay tax on these purchases? YES on both, because Home Depot has "brick & mortar" locations within VA. Ex 2: You purchase the same DeWalt drill from, do you pay taxes? Currently the answer is NO, (Amazon won't collect taxes, but technically your supposed to remit the sales tax on your state tax return) because does not have a "brick & mortar" location within VA (or any other state as far as I know excepting their corporate HQ). State Senator Emmett Hanger says he'll push in this years General Assembly session to level the playing field between online and traditional retail. This should come as no surprise to those of you who have followed Sen Hangers career and know that he is pro tax and has been for quite some time in fact it's the reason he had to fight for and nearly lost the Republican nomination for State Senate in his last race. Well Senator, here are a few questions that I would like answered on this issue:
1.) What part of the already bloated and over spent state infrastructure would be responsible for collecting this money? 2.) How would you force other states to handle this and get the money from them? 3.) What do you do about the 5 states that have no sales tax; Alaska, Delaware, Montana, New Hampshire, and Oregon, are you going to somehow force them to create a tax bureau to do VA's bidding? 4.) How do you handle a purchase made on an Internet capable smart phone where the service provider is based in the VA, the physical purchase is made by a VA resident while on vacation in California from a company based in Michigan, and shipped to an address in Florida?

This is just plain STUPID, once again were punishing the guy who built a better mouse trap and getting further and further away from capitalism and closer and closer to socialism. I don't see any effective way to bring this forward short of a brand new government bureaucracy or throwing money into and already failing one. The way I see it, either way this will cost Virginians more than it makes in the short term and probably the long as well since government will run it and there track record of running pretty much anything isn't real positive.

Valley Family Forum Challenge Answers

OK, by now you've had enough time to either take the challenge or ignore it and think that I've lost my mind (entirely possible, but not yet). For those of you who took the challenge, you'll soon see how much you actually know about these issues and for those who didn't take the challenge you'll have you eyes opened. Enough jib jab, here are the answers:

1.) C- 50%
2.) D- 50%
3.) A- 10%
4.) B- Massachusetts
5.) C- 37%
6.) D- 90%
7.) D- 33%
8.) D- 5
9.) D- 70%
10.) D- 50,000,000
11.) B- 22%
12.) B- Abortion clinic health and safety standards, D- fetal pain relief for babies who are about to be aborted, and E- Right to Life Act
13.) D- 14,000,000,000
14.) B- 25%
15.) D- 30,000,000
16.) D- 25%
17.) D- 98%
18.) A- Valley Family Forum & C- The Family foundation
19.) B- Roy Moore (If you got this one wrong, then here is some free advise, watch something on tv other than American Idol)
20.) C- Gay and Straight Alliance

Ok, now you have the answers, so how did you do? I would consider myself to be reasonably aware of these issues and some are why I'm politically active, however I wasn't aware of the severity of some of these issues and was frightened at the scope of these problems. In the coming weeks I will have additional postings on these issues and how you can help to put an end to some of these atrocities that are tearing our country apart.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Valley Family Forum Challenge

I just tonight attended the Capstone program at my church and wanted to pass some things on. I wouldn't consider myself to be an expert on family or marriage issues, after all I'm no Dr. Dobson, but I would consider myself aware of Christian Conservative issues. I was given the opportunity to take a test or quiz of sorts and thought some of my readers may also want to test their knowledge on these issues. Below are the twenty questions and the possible responses for each one. Good luck, and no Googling the answers.

1.) In 1960, America's divorce rate was under 10%. It is now the highest in the Western world. What percent of all American marriages now end in divorce?
A. 15%
B. 33%
C. 50 %
D. 75 %

2.) What percent of marriages are proceeded by cohabitation?
A. 15%
B. 25%
C. 40%
D. 50%

3.) What percentage of cohabitation couples are still together after 5 years?
A. 10%
B. 20%
C. 30%
D. 40%

4.) The Supreme Judicial Court of what state ordered the state legislature to pass a law to legalize same-sex marriages?
A. California
B. Massachusetts
C. Vermont
D. Oregon

5.) In 1915 fewer than 2% of live births were to single mothers. The rate rose to 4% in 1960, and by 1996 had risen to?
A. 25%
B. 30%
C. 45%
D. 51%

6.) In 15 of the largest U.S. cities, what what percent of babies born to teen mothers are born to unmarried parents?
A. 60%
B. 70%
C. 80%
D. 90%

7.) What percent of U.S. Children are raised in single-parent homes?
A. 10%
B. 20%
C. 33%
D. 66%

8.) The poverty rate of children raised in fatherless homes is how many times that of children who are raised in two-parent homes?
A. 2
B. 3
C. 4
D. 5

9.) What percent of America's teen murderers and long-term prisoners come from fatherless homes?
A. 40%
B. 50%
C. 60%
D. 70

10.) How many babies have been aborted in the US since the Supreme Court's decision on Roe v Wade in 1973?
A. 4,000
B. 850,000
C. 6,000,000
D. 50,000,000

11.) What percent of all pregnancies end in abortion?
A. 15%
B. 22%
C. 35%
D. 45%

12.) The Virginia General Assembly has not yet approved which three bills?
A. ban on partial birth abortions
B. abortion clinic health and safety standards
C. parental consent for abortions involving minor age girls
D. fetal pain relief for babies who are about to be aborted
E. Right to life act

13.) Pornography sales generate about how much every year (in billions of dollars)?
A. 1
B. 5
C. 9
D. 14

14.) Pornography contributes to what percentage of failed marriages?
A. 10%
B. 25%
C. 50%
D. 75%

15.) Sexually-oriented web sites comprise 60% of all web sites and attract how many Americans every day?
A. 1,000,000
B. 10,000,000
C. 20,000,000
D. 30,000,000

16.) Of those web sites, what percent involve children?
A. 10%
B. 15%
C. 20%
D. 25%

17.) According to one study, of the 12,000 cases of sexual assaults against minor age girls nationwide, what percentage had pornography associated with them?
A. 50%
B. 60%
C. 80%
D. 98%

18.) What two groups supported putting filters on library computers to help protect children from pornography?
A. Valley Family Forum
C. The Family Foundation
D. American Library Association

19.) What former State Supreme Court Justice was fired for displaying the Ten Commandments in their court?
A. Judge Judy
B. Roy Moore
C. Jesse Jackson
D. Clarence Thomas

20.) GSA stands for?
A. Golfing Student Association
B. Golden Seniors Affiliation
C. Gay and Straight Alliance
D. Geographic Surveyors Administration

So how do you think you did? I will post the answers in a few days so you will know. I must admit I was not as knowledgeable about these topics as I thought I was.