Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Good morning world...

Woke up early, early this morning and flipped on Fox News as I was getting ready. Usually I go straight to the computer and don't watch Fox until later in the day -- at the earliest I  see Fox and Friends, never earlier. Today was different. I had to be up at 5-ish (yawn).

I was brushing my teeth, doing the norm and swore I was on the wrong channel. Everyone speaking had a British accent. I walked in, took a glance and saw the Fox logo on the bottom. OK, I thought, must be something special going on and they have a British guest or they're just doing a short bit on, what else, the Royal Wedding (yes, it is now a capped event ;-).

I heard nothing  about the wedding (oops, excuse me the Royal Wedding). If not for the accents I could have been listening to one of our financial debates here in the states. It was fascinating. The two financial pundits were talking about Greece, the Euro, and the British economy. One was advocating a fix of  their version of tax and spend, the other was saying cut the spending. They talked about the price of gas, and pretty much all the same things we're talking about here.

I don't pay as much attention to the world outside of the U.S. like I should. I used to get updates from news media in Europe and Great Britain. I stopped at some point. I've decided that I better start looking at a bigger picture than the one provided by U.S. news outlets.

Anyone have any good suggestions for news outlets that give 'fair and balanced' outside of the U.S. I was listening to Sky news this morning, a Fox affiliate. They'll be on my list.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Matt's comment on passage of HB 87 / Immigration

Rep. Matt Ramsey Comments on Passage of Common Sense Immigration Reform

State Representative Matt Ramsey (R-Peachtree City) released the following statement today in response to the passage of House Bill 87:

“Today members of the General Assembly came together and firmly resolved to uphold the laws of our society. This legislation closes gaping loopholes that have allowed illegal aliens to flood into our country and state, where they unlawfully take advantage of taxpayer funded services. Current economic conditions have made it painfully obvious that the state of Georgia literally cannot afford to continue this broken system. Our classrooms are more crowded, our healthcare system is at its limits, our transportation infrastructure is overburdened and our law enforcement community is pushed to the brink. Georgians have demanded action, and their state legislature has complied. We continue to welcome and encourage legal immigration, and this legislation helps those individuals, as well as all other legal Georgia residents, by ensuring that employment opportunities are filled by legal residents.”

Georgia HB 87, Immigration Bill PASSED!

Representative Matt Ramsey crafted a stellar immigration bill, which has, of course, created a lot of controversy. I'm not going to delve into it right now, it's late and I have an early morning. However, I just wanted to say I'm proud of Matt, pleased the Bill made it through. It's now headed to Georgia Governor Nathan Deal's desk for his signature.

We all know it's not over after watching Arizona, but Georgia has added its name to the list of states going in the right direction.

For all those who choose to write nasty comments or argue, please don't. All comments are screened and I'm not going to argue or post them.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Special interest groups gearing up to stop budget...

Interesting this morning as I was doing my scan of news, checking Facebook, Twitter, etc., etc. Saw the following on a FB account:
Urgent! The White House announced that in a big speech tomorrow, President Obama will do what no Republican President has been able to do: Put Medicare and Medicaid on the table for potential cuts. Tell President Obama that if he cuts benefits, he'll lose your grassroots donations and volunteering i...

(note, that's a Facebook link, not sure if it'll work if you're not logged in. Try this if it doesn't: URGENT PLEDGE: Tell Obama no cuts to Medicare/Medicaid benefits.

Earlier I received an email from a group called Welfare Watch which included an "Action Alert" urging everyone to call their Representatives to 'urge them to oppose the Ryan Budget Plan". Why? They say his plan goes too far as it proposes steep cuts to Medicaid and other social safety net programs, and that it would 'eliminate the Medicaid expansion included in the Affordable Care Act."
They go on to say that 2/3's of the cuts in his budget would be made to programs that "serve low-income children and families". 

In my life I've hit some real lows. I remember a time when things were so tight I took restaurant ketchup packets, mixed them with water, heated and ate over spaghetti at home. Yep, that was as disgusting as it sounds. It never, ever crossed my mind to go on the dole with the government. I was definitely eligible. However, I took on part time jobs, typed resumes, did whatever I could (legally) to make sure I survived. 

If I had taken advantage of food stamps, welfare or whatever programs were available to me, I might not be typing this now. My son might have grown up thinking life was all about how to con the system and get more money out of Uncle Sam. I can't imagine taking the help, so I can't really imagine that I'd have succumbed to the enticement of the system.

End result of my choice though is that we survived that rough time way back when and now we're productive, happy, balanced individuals paying our own way.

I was probably the kind of person that the programs were designed to help. Someone who would use the system for a short time, then get back on the saddle. Instead what we have in our country is an entire culture of people dependent on others. People who could be taking care of themselves. 

I know it's a huge problem. How to get people who've never know anything different, who are mired in the culture of dependence to change the way they look at the world, to get off their duffs and work. I also know there are a lot of people who are truly not capable, who only survive in this world because of the system I'm railing against.

I wonder where all the money we dump into government programs goes. I also wonder what good all the money we donate to charities is doing. Where is all the money going that we tithe to our churches going each month? 

I used to go downtown regularly and feed the homeless. As part of our mission we would cook, serve, then serve ourselves and go sit with the homeless to eat. I have to say that most days I wasn't able to do more than go through the motions of eating, but it did open my eyes to the plight of many. There were many though who chose the lifestyle. There were many who, with a little bit of real help, could have gotten back out into the working and self-supporting world. 

I started this blog to write about how the Left was gearing up to attack any changes to the system. They truly believe that just dumping money into taking care of people is compassionate. I wish we had a system of honesty, where people couldn't "work" the system. I wish we could ferret out those who abuse or take advantage of the system without true need. I wish the system trained people, had a true end time frame and that it worked more as a step program with measurable goals.

True compassion pulls people up, it doesn't keep them locked into a cycle of dependency. If there's never an end, why bother trying to rise up? 

Seeing how all the powers are amassing to thwart any fixes to our woeful monetary problems, I am concerned more than ever that our weak politicians won't be able to make any real changes. Paul Ryan's plan has a lot of good things in it. I'm hearing all kinds of things that are said to be included in President Obama's plan. I will be surprised if we get anything more than watered down gruel when they get through stirring the pot in Washington.

I'm watching them all carefully. Based on what I'm seeing thus far, with few exception, I suspect in 2012 I'll be voting for an infusion of new blood in D.C.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Shocker! On his own, judge demands homeschool student IDs

Issues order for attendance officers to provide names, addresses

By Bob Unruh
(c) 2011 WorldNetDaily

A Mississippi state judge has issued an order to public school attendance officers in his judicial district to provide the names of all homeschoolers there, prompting alarm at the Home School Legal Defense Association, which fights for the rights of homeschooling worldwide.

The order apparently is because the judge himself wants the information, as there appeared to be no case, motion or dispute prompting the request.

The HSLDA, which was alerted by its members in the 13th Chancery Court district in Mississippi, where Judge Joe Dale Walker issued the order, immediately sought and obtained a stay of the order from the state Supreme Court.

The judge's order noted that the "cause" for the order "came on for hearing on the court's own motion," but the HSLDA said apparently no hearing ever was held - and the order is the only document in the court file.

It also has no case number, the organization said.

Spokeswoman Beverly Kraft of the state court system told WND that the issue as it was presented to the state Supreme Court was a "confidential" case about which no documents, no information and no explanation was available.

The HSLDA said the order is highly unusual and could provide a "chilling" effect on not only homeschoolers but any group whose members' names may at some point be demanded by a judge.

The organization said the state Supreme Court ordered a stay in all proceedings in the case in which Walker demanded the names of all homeschoolers in his district. The order instructed Walker to explain to the higher court by April 18 exactly what's going on.

There was no explanation for why the judge issued the original demand for homeschoolers' information.

"At this time it is uncertain how the Supreme Court will proceed after receiving Judge Walker's response," the organization said. "It may simply issue an order disposing of the case or may require legal briefs and/or oral arguments before issuing a final decision.

"In any event, we will keep members advised of the status of the case."

An attorney for the group, James Mason, told WND that in the years he has worked with homeschool issues, he never before has seen such an order.

"It's a very chilling prospect," he said. "The plain fact is if judges start behaving this way - [targeted could be] people who attend churches or synagogues [or other groups]."

"That would have a chilling effect on freedom of association, and the exercise of other freedoms," he said.

A judge in a similar order could demand the names of patriot organizations, tea party groups, Democrat groups, GOP groups or even labor, teacher or parent groups.

HSLDA said that after attendance officers at the schools got the order, they notified homeschoolers, enclosing a copy of the judge's order.

"The letters cited the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act and asked the families to notify the attendance officer by April 8, 2011, if they intended to initiate legal action to prevent release of the protected information sought by Judge Walker," HSLDA said.

The notice from the HSLDA to its members said the judge also wanted the addresses of all homeschoolers in Smith, Lawrence, Covington, Simpson and Jefferson Davis counties.

Walker's order listed no parties but only said "RE: HOMESCHOOL."

"We believe that Judge Walker's order is an inappropriate use of judicial power," said Michael Farris, chairman of HSLDA.

The state's court website says chancery courts "have jurisdiction over disputes in matters involving equity; domestic matters including adoptions, custody disputes and divorces; guardianships; sanity hearings; wills; and challenges to constitutionality of state laws. Land records are filed in Chancery Court."

The chancery courts also are given jurisdiction in juvenile matters in counties that have no county court.

Read more: Shocker! On his own, judge demands homeschool student IDs

Shared with permission of author.