Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Monday, December 27, 2010
I'm going to submit that question here. If you've got your own questions, go here, and submit!!
There are some great questions posted already.
Why does it matter? Well, this is the person who is the "face" of Party most conservatives vote for most of the time. What do you want our "face" to look like?
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Tuesday Evenings-beginning Jan. 11 thur Mar. 29 7:00 pm until no later than 8:30pm.
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Why should we attend the Consent of the Governed Rally at the State Capitol on the first day of session (Jan. 5 at 10am)?
Sure, speeches that are longer than about 2 minutes boring and many times, even good speakers, use empty, worn-out sound bites more than than needed.
Yet we we rally because it's a celebration of common beliefs and victories to affirm our common goal: a return to freedom and prosperity.
The sponsors of this rally, the Missouri Leadership Project, is collaboration of independent groups who want to make sure all the incoming and veteran lawmakers know that we* haven't lost interest yet.
Remember, as I always tell myself, solutions don't come from rallies, but the rallies provide the place for connections and for the real leaders to stand out--either in the speeches they give or their organization skills (and what our movement lacks are leaders we can elect to office).
Now of course, sprinkled in-between a few outstanding speakers, there are lots people who could good speakers giving bad speeches simply because can. They get so used to public speaking, and we're so desperate to hear some sanity come from the pulpit, we tolerate the ramblers (and yes, the just bad speakers...)
We keep participating because it's moving the ball forward. Our country didn't get here over night, and it takes lots of solidifying the troops (figuratively speaking) before solid action can be taken.
Even more, rallies are about showing up in big numbers, so even if you have a contrary outlook on rallying, protesting, and anything else that basically boosts egos (like I do), you still should go to rallies, protests, and speeches--especially the the rally at the state capitol in Jeff. City on Jan. 5 where legislators need to see our faces.
Really, this is an excuse to go the Capitol and reminder our lawmakers: the people who elected you are watching.
note to audience: "we" refers to citizens who are concerned that our nation is both financial and morally bankrupt
note to self: re-read tomorrow and fix typos
Thursday, December 16, 2010
America's problems stem not from an inability to elect Republicans into office; history shows America can do that. (Note: we just did with Steele in charge of the RNC...)
The real question is: can we get the *right* kind of Republicans in Congress?
Has anyone noticed that Ann Wagner’s agenda doesn’t mention what *kinds* of Republicans the RNC, under her leadership, would help elect and raise money for?
Is Ann’s goal to get the *right* kind of Republicans in?
Now, I suppose it's unfair to pick on Ann Wagner because she is probably no different than the other candidates, including Steele. However, Saul Anuzis from MI, who is also running, is endorsed by Tea Party nation (last point). But like Ann Wagner, his "Why Support Saul" page does not mention the kinds of candidates he would support. At the same time, Ann Wagner has a history of supporting candidates like Rep. Roy Blunt, who led the way for using taxpayer money to bailout the "too big to fail" via TARP while Saul Anuzis has connections to Reps like Rep. McCotter (MI-R), who was one of the few disenting Republicans who voted not once, but twice against the big bill authorizing lots of stuff including TARP.
Thus, maybe it's not politically savvy to mention that you want to support the outsiders who will do the right thing on your website. Maybe it's up to conservatives to connect the dots to know which candidate is more likely to support truly conservative candidates.
Even more, the entire purpose of the RNC should be in question but those who have spent time fighting to end out-of-control government spending. The best candidate to support is one that can articulate why supporting Republicans who can win is not a legitimate long-term strategy for saving our country.
The goal should be limiting government not electing Republicans (without definition). I call this “sticking fingers in the leaks of the dam” to hold off the inevitable. But maybe this is the best we can do. Yet something inside of me says “give me liberty or give me death”!!!!
This post is already too long, but...
At an RNC meeting in Hawaii last January, conservative members united to try to pass a resolution prohibiting RNC funding for candidates who don't support eight of ten key conservative issues, a proposal that Steele opposed. A compromise resolution was passed that was similar, but didn't really affect the types of candidates that the RNC supported, as there are plenty of examples of the RNC supporting incumbents who voted for deficit spending and earmarks. You would think this would go against the Republican National Platform, but the platform really isn't that great; no where can one link to principles the TEA Parties have spent over 1.5 years articulating. But then, that's why people people are TEA Partying.
What should be obvious is that while the RNC chair will say he or she is neutral and should support all Republican candidates; this isn't true. The RNC supports incumbents first, and follows what it is typical of politics: financial support is linked to how likely it is that you will win and able to raise money for the RNC in the future. The RNC is about it's own survival--not yours.
Friday, December 10, 2010
In the Law of Solid Ground in his book 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, Maxwell says that trust is the foundation of leadership, and I'd expand on that to say, it's the foundation of all of our relationships.
The way this plays out in the business world is finding ways to build trust. And here's an example of Walgreens doing that after someone hacked into their email database:
As a company, we absolutely believe that all customer relationships must be built on trust. That is why we believe it is important to inform you of this incident. Online security experts have reported an increase in attacks on email systems, and therefore we have voluntarily contacted the appropriate authorities and are working with them regarding this incident.
The email also included tips on not sharing personal information through email links and that no other information beyond the email addresses were stolen.
“To be trusted is a greater compliment than to be loved.”
Wednesday, December 08, 2010
Capitol Legislative Academy
Tuesday, January 4, 2011
10:00 a.m. - 3:0 p.m.
Jefferson City, Missouri Capitol
House Hearing Room 7
Find your way through the Legislative maze and PROMOTE YOUR ISSUE.
Learn the most effective way to approach your legislature.
Gain knowledge from a mock hearing.
Become skilled on how to present your subject matter.
NETWORK with other like-minded Missourians.
Lunch and materials included.
RSVP by December 20th to 314-983-0680, email@example.com or online
Money must be received in advance to be assured of lunch.
$12 per person; children under 12 - $5
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
While I was only able to video tape the last 15 minutes of his speech, I can say two things about Van Jones:
1. He's an inspiring speaker who is motivated by a deep moral conviction that it's important for the strong to stand up for the weak.
2. He believes the best way to stand up for the weak is through government programs that implicitly require the redistribution of wealth using a 21st-century code word for it: green jobs.
Watch Van Jones describe the three pay checks (from who?? YOU minus money to pay politicians and bureaucrats) that "Red-State farmers" would get if his plan was enacted. Note: he is about real equality; he's not just giving taxpayer money to the inner city communities, he wants to give it to the rural communities too!
1. Farmers would get paid by the government via subsidies needed to support windfarms and turbine technology that requires huge capital investments
2. Farmers would get paid to grow "energy crops" via substidies given to business that can't support themselves without help because their energy costs MORE than coal, gas or nuclear energy
3. Farmers could sell carbon from the ground to companies who need carbon credits if "Cap and Tax" passes!
Yes, there might be "Green Jobs" out there, but my question for Van Jones is: where's the pay check coming from?
Monday, November 01, 2010
Why is Amendment 3 on the ballot?
Ed Emery has part of the answer:
To the Citizens of Missouri,
Numerous conservative organizations across the state have asked whether or not Amendment 3 will hurt efforts to end the state income tax. Ed Emery, sponsor of MO Jobs and Prosperity Act 2010, responded to that question and to a charge of deception concerning his position. Mr. Emery is urging a ‘no’ vote on Amendment 3 for the following reasons:
“I have not tried to be deceptive but informative. I have fully supported (I think even co-sponsored) Missouri Association of Realtors efforts to ensure that transfer fees are not imposed, but for whatever reason we have not been able to pass that legislation. MAR can probably fill in the blanks on who has been responsible for killing the anti-fee proposals. I also have not opposed their efforts to accomplish the same thing via Missouri's petition process because I was told by their representatives that the petition was confined to their fee issue and did not impact efforts to eliminate the income tax in Missouri.
Once I took time to read the ballot language, it was clear I had been misled.
Amendment 3 imposes a special industry-specific exemption from the provisions of SJR 29 (or its legislative successor). It invokes a serious flaw into meaningful tax reform. Not only will passage of Amendment 3 increase the consumption tax rate needed to eliminate the income tax and remain revenue-neutral, but it will be followed by a long line of similarly "important" exemptions. Missouri will be thrown right back into the process of government picking winners and losers by tax code. That's the taxation model that always favors the powerful elite over small business, punishes economic success, and ultimately penalizes the consumer.
The consumption tax model (SJR 29) is not a tweak or even major modification of the income tax model. It represents a step-function transformation: a paradigm shift. MAR, with Amendment 3, is threatening this strategic transformation in the economic climate and prosperity of Missouri for a tactical victory that is trivial in comparison and that benefits only a few Missourians. True tax reform benefits all Missourians.
That is my view and why I am passionately opposed to Amendment 3. I am happy to do whatever I can to help ensure that the transfer fee issue is fixed, but not at the cost of meaningful tax reform. Whatever the people choose on Nov. 2nd, my goal is that they be fully informed on both the surface and the strategic impacts before they vote.
I would say fully informed on the "secondary effects," but after reading the Amendment 3 language, I don't think the confrontation with SJR 29 is a secondary effect, but the primary purpose. I think the proposed special treatment of one industry relative to SJR 29's proposed tax reforms is MAR's primary purpose even though they have told membership the primary purpose is the threat of new fees.
As always - frequently mistaken, but seldom without an opinion,
I remain sincerely yours,
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Friday, October 01, 2010
2. I got an email from State Sen. Steve Rupp that I'd like to share with you one the beginning stages of the redistricting process in Missouri:
Households...have filled out and returned their forms...for the 2010 U.S. Census....Data collected from these forms will help determine the number of seats our state occupies in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Currently, Missouri has nine Congressional districts....
According to a 2010 Census map representing mail participation rate by counties in our state, Lincoln County had a 73-78 percent participation rate and St. Charles County had a participation rate of 79-84 percent. However, even with these high percentage rates reported out of our district, news forecasts have Missouri losing one of our nine Congressional seats. According to a Boston Globe article, Missouri is one of eight states projected to lose a seat as a result of a shifting population base throughout the country.
A St. Louis Post-Dispatch article reports that Missouri’s 72 percent return rate matched the nation’s overall number; however, our state’s growth rate (about 7 percent since 2000) has not kept pace with the nation’s 9 percent increase.
...couple of months before the Census Bureau releases its report....The first data released from the 2010 Census will be the official national and state population count, which will be used to apportion seats in the U.S. House. As mandated by the U.S. Constitution, this data must be delivered to the President of the United States by the U.S. Census Bureau on or before Dec. 31, 2010.
The work then falls on each state to draw new congressional districts in time for the 2013 elections. In Missouri, Congressional redistricting is the responsibility of the State Legislature. As chair of the Senate Select Committee on Redistricting, created in 2009, it is my job to help prepare the General Assembly for its role in redrawing Congressional districts in 2011. The task of redrawing the state’s 34 Senatorial districts and 163 House districts is assigned to two bipartisan commissions appointed by the governor. The Legislature must draw and approve new Congressional districts during the 2011 regular session, or face a special session, to ensure proper filing in February 2012 for Congressional District candidates.
As work progresses on this issue, I will keep you informed on any changes regarding how the boundary lines are drawn for your legislative districts. If you have any questions regarding this matter or any other issues within state government, please visit my website at www.senate.mo.gov/rupp. You can also e-mail me or call my office toll-free at (866) 271-2844.Emphasis mine.
The point: to follow this issue means following what's going on in both the Senate and House versions of the Select Committee on Redistricting.
Thursday, September 30, 2010
A select group of the "intellectual elite," who don't believe dogs showed be owned, are behind Prop. B.
Prop. B will lead many dog breeders to close their doors⎯or worse⎯choose bankruptcy. Prop. B does not provide additional protection for dogs over and above laws already on the books. Instead, it requires changes that are artificial, not helpful, and costly, which will put dog breeders out of business
Prop. B is more about controlling private businesses based on a false view that the elite "no better" than the "the People."
Missouri Department of Agriculture has been criticized for lax enforcement, and the recent dog rescues show that even without Prop. B dogs properly are being properly rescued (stltoday.com). Prop. B is a phony puppy mill protection bill.
Since our culture is more likely to make choices based on emotion instead thoughtful research, showing puppies on commercials makes volunteering or donating money to oppose Prop. B seem like a losing proposition. However, the only way to change our culture is too engage it by starting with our friends in simply conversations about emotional charged images, confusing names ("Human Society"), and role of government.
But you still might be thinking?
Will Prop B improve conditions in our kennels?
Invite your friends and find out the answers at these events:
Oct. 4th at 7 pm in Washington, MO at the Senior Center at 1459 5th street, Guest speaker will be Kelly Smith with the Missouri Farm Bureau.
Oct. 16th at 2:30 pm at Pillar In The Valley, Chesterfield, Guest speaker will be Chris Chin, 6th generation hog farmer.
Events sponsored by the CWA of MO, I Heard the People Say, and Show Me Patriots.
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Information below is from: http://www.yestosavehomes.com/
What would Amendment 3 do?
It would amend the Missouri Constitution to prevent double taxation on homes and other properties by barring transfer taxes on real estate transactions.
What is a real estate transfer tax?
It’s a tax imposed by state or local governments, or both, that is collected when you transfer ownership of your home, land or other real estate. Typically, once the tax is on the books, the rate can be increased by the state, city or county without a vote of the people.
What is the specific language of Amendment 3?
Amendment 3 is simple and straightforward: “Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to prevent the state, counties, and other political subdivisions from imposing any new tax, including a sales tax, on the sale or transfer of homes or any other real estate?”
Do Missouri or its local governments now impose real estate transfer taxes?
These unfair taxes are currently allowed under the Missouri Constitution. Even though these unfair taxes are not now being collected in Missouri, 37 states and the District of Columbia are imposing some variation of a real estate transfer tax. Missouri needs to head off this temptation to politicians that amounts to unfair double taxation.
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
The last day to register to vote in Missouri is days away on Oct. 6. Those not registered to vote by October 6 will not be able to vote in November.
Find out how here: http://www.sos.mo.gov/elections/s_default.asp?id=voter
I try to get an announcement in my church bulletin, along with instructions available to hand out, the Sunday before the deadline.
Will you be in Missouri on Nov 2? Will you be working a poll?
You can vote absentee by going in person to the Board of Election Commissioners in your county or by requesting an absentee ballot.
Check out Kerry Messer's ballot measures guide before you go: http://missourifamilynetwork.net/
Saturday, September 25, 2010
Here's a contrast between how Russ handle tough questions and how Ed responded:
Ed Martin established a very comfortable demeanor during the debate while Rep. Russ Carnahan seemed overly focused on his notes at times. Here is Ed's closing statement:
Here are statements by Ed Martin and Russ Carnahan on how the government should protect human life or support taxpayer funding to end it.
Saturday, August 21, 2010
Courageous Missouri Senators - Protecting the Invisible People Who Want Affordable Medical Insurance
Here is a review of how Missouri Senators voted.
Twenty-fifth Day–Thursday, February 18, 2010 - Official Record page 1505
Barnitz Bray Callahan Champion Clemens Crowell Days Dempsey
Engler Goodman Green Griesheimer Justus Keaveny Lager Lembke
Mayer McKenna Nodler Pearce Rupp Schaefer Schmitt Shields
Shoemyer Stouffer Vogel Wilson Wright-Jones—29
Bartle Cunningham Purgason Scott—4 Friends of Liberty!!
Absent with leave—Senators—None
Representative Emery offered an objection to CCS SCS HCS HBs 1311 & 1341, which was
appended to the bill.
LETTER OF OBJECTION
Jeremiah W. (Jay) Nixon
State Capitol, Room 216
105 West Capitol Avenue
Jefferson City, MO 65101
RE: CCS SCS HCS HBs 1311 and 1341 Establishes provisions regarding health insurance coverage for individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders and the licensure of applied behavior analysts.
Dear Governor Nixon:
I submit this objection to the signing of CCS SCS HCS HBs 1311 and 1341 pursuant to article III, section 30 of the Constitution of Missouri.
This bill violates the fundamental and natural right to life of all Missouri citizens by inhibiting the freedom to choose and acquire health care that is necessary to preserve one's life and health from any source capable of providing medically efficacious health care. Any state mandate to provide coverage increases the cost of health care thereby making it less affordable. Furthermore, House Bill No. 1311 prohibits the sale of health insurance to Missouri residents by out-of-state providers unless they conform to Missouri law. This violates the right of Missouri citizens to acquire medically efficacious health care from any source.
In general term, the distinction between Missouri residents and non-residents with regard to the availability and choice of health care lacks any rational basis whatsoever and is a violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the federal constitution. The restriction on the sale of health insurance to Missouri residents violates the fundamental rights to life and acts medical self defense by Missouri residents preserved by both the federal and state constitutions. The restriction on the sale of health insurance policies to Missouri residents by out-of-state health carriers violates the Supremacy Clause of the federal Constitution because the state of Missouri lacks jurisdiction to impose any extraterritorial restriction on the activities of Missouri residents and out-of-state health insurance carriers conducting transactions substantially outside of the state of Missouri.
The proposed legislation also violates the Commerce Clause of the federal constitution by inhibiting the sale of interstate goods and services to residents of Missouri. Missouri has unconstitutionally exempted its own health care plan, Missouri Health Net, as well as numerous small, in-state businesses from its mandate. These waivers and exemptions are unavailable to out-of-state companies thereby creating a competitive advantage for the state of Missouri and certain in- state businesses at the expense of a national free market in health care services.
Because of these numerous constitutional violations, I ask the Governor to act for the good of the people of Missouri and to veto House Bill No. 1311.
/s/ [State Rep.] Ed Emery
Sixty-ninth Day–Wednesday, May 12, 2010 1493
On motion of Representative Scharnhorst, CCS SCS HCS HBs 1311 & 1314 was read the
third time and passed by the following vote:
Allen Atkins Aull Ayres Biermann
Bivins Brandom Bringer Brown 30 Brown 50
Brown 149 Bruns Burnett Calloway Carter
Casey Chappelle-Nadal Colona Conway Cooper
Corcoran Cunningham Curls Deeken Denison
Dieckhaus Diehl Dixon Dougherty Dusenberg
Englund Faith Fallert Fischer 107 Fisher 125
Flanigan Flook Frame Franz Funderburk
Gatschenberger Grill Grisamore Harris Hobbs
Hodges Holsman Hoskins 80 Hoskins 121 Hughes
Hummel Icet Jones 63 Jones 117 Kander
Keeney Kelly Kingery Kirkton Komo
Kratky Kraus Kuessner Lair Lampe
Largent Leara LeBlanc LeVota Liese
Lipke Loehner Low McClanahan McDonald
McGhee McNary McNeil Meadows Meiners
Molendorp Morris Munzlinger Nance Nasheed
Newman Nieves Nolte Norr Oxford
Pace Parkinson Pratt Quinn Riddle
Roorda Rucker Ruestman Ruzicka Salva
Sander Scavuzzo Schaaf Schad Scharnhorst
Schieffer Schlottach Schoemehl Schupp Shively
Silvey Skaggs Smith 14 Smith 150 Spreng
Still Storch Stream Sutherland Swinger
Talboy Thomson Tilley Todd Tracy
Viebrock Vogt Wallace Walsh Walton Gray
Wasson Webb Webber Wells Weter
Whitehead Wilson 119 Wilson 130 Witte Wright
Yaeger Zerr Zimmerman Mr Speaker
Burlison Cox Davis Day Dethrow
Dugger Emery Ervin Guernsey Guest
Jones 89 Koenig Parson Sater Schoeller
ABSENT WITH LEAVE: 002
Speaker Pro Tem Pratt declared the bill passed.
Monday, May 10, 2010
The talk of "change" in Washington, D.C. is, as you know, a sham.
Nothing proves this more than the current debate on Senator Dodd's Restoring American Financial Stability Act, which you and I know should be called the Fed Empowerment Act. Senate leadership is hoping to cram more big government down our throats to cover up for the economic problems caused by – you guessed it – big government.
Our nation faces major challenges for which the freedom movement has the solutions, and this is no time to back down. While the Sanders amendment takes important steps toward more transparency, the thorough audit language we fought to pass in the House last year is no longer present.
But there is good news. Senator David Vitter will offer a strong Audit the Fed amendment to restore that language, but it needs all the help we can give it to pass.
Bond: (202) 224-5721
McCaskill: Phone 202-224-6154
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
The last question from the audience at the Holden Public Policy Forum at Webster University to DESE Commissioner Chris Nicastro was basically this: if you the commissioner had stable, and even increasing money flow (which is certainly not the case at the present time), what would she do with it?
Without hesitation, she answered: "early childhood education."
Now, why would that bother me over and above many other issues including Race to the Top funding?
Don't I think children should be educated, and certainly as early as possible?
I'm bothered because parents are responsible for "educating" their children by reading with them and doing other basic learning activities. It's called "parenting."
To Commissionor Nicastro credit, she seems to understand the notion that "school" should not be narrowly defined as only time in the "classroom," but rather, "school" is much more broader in scope and includes all educational activities. Homeschool parents understand this concept well.
To me, it seems, that will all the talk about the need for "educational reform," what we need is a revolution in returning to the basics (no I'm not very creative in my proposed solutions), and not fads and continually defining and redefining "standards."
Learning how to read, write, and add as well as many other tasks are not group activities. Why are we trying to make them group activities? Maybe because our society has tried to make them group activities, some children fall behind?
More over, the pre-kindergarten push is based on false assumptions that beg the question: is there research showing that a structured (or possibility out-of-control) classroom is better "early child education" than parents can provide their children at home or no classroom instruction at all?
Ok, now, I'm sure some of you are thinking, "Ruth, it's great that well-to-do parents might have the intuition and resources to "educate" their children at home before Kindergarten, but what about the 'poor'?"
Let's look at how well Head Start, a program focused on early childhood education for lower-income children, has preformed. Head Start serves approximately 900,000 low-income children at a cost of $9 billion per year. An experimental evaluation by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services found that
"Head Start has had little to no effect on cognitive, socio-emotional, health, and parenting outcomes of participating children. For the four-year-old cohort, access to Head Start had a beneficial effect on only two outcomes (1.8 percent) out of 112 measures. For the three-year-old cohort, access to Head Start had one harmful impact (0.9 percent) and five (4.5 percent) beneficial impacts out of 112 measures," according to by David B. Muhlhausen, Ph.D. and Dan Lips.To sound like a progressive, in part, the solution is more discussion on what is "early childhood education." And to sound like a conservative, I don't think the main problem is not enough publicly funded structured (or not so structured) classroom snacks, naps, and diversity training.
Sunday, April 11, 2010
Love, by definition, is something that can't be forced. We have to want to love.
What do we do if we don't love God from the inside out, wholly and totally, with our all of our hearts and minds?
A. W. Tozer, in his book The Pursuit of God, writes that "if we cooperate with Him in loving obedience, God will manifest Himself to us, and that manifestation will be the difference between a nominal Christian life and a life radiant with the light of His face."
I wonder: Where does the "loving obedience" come from?
Tozer asks: "Why do some persons 'find' God in a way that others do not?"
Tozer defines "finding God" as "becoming more closely united in mind and heart" with God. And those who exercise and not neglect the longing within to know God in the deepest ways possible this side of Heaven will develop "spiritual receptivity."
This "spiritual receptivity" is a gift from God and requires a "determined heart" and "courage to wrench ourselves loose from the grip of our times."
"Let any man turn to God in earnest, let him begin to exercise himself unto godliness, let him seek to develop his powers of spiritual receptivity by trust and obedience and humility, and the results will exceed anything he may have hoped in his leaner and weaker days," writes Tozer.
I pray Tozer's words:
O God and Father, I repent of my sinful preoccupation with visible things. The world has been too much with me. Thou hast been here and I knew it not. I have been blind to Thy presence. Open my eyes that I may behold Thee in and around me. For Christ's sake, Amen.
Hillsong's From the Inside Out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-afZJ9_TIM
Re-posted from l0-6-09
Thursday, March 25, 2010
This week your Missouri Senate pushed back again working for the passage of “The Health Care Freedom Act” (SJR 25). This important legislation would allow the people of Missouri an opportunity to vote for a constitutional amendment that would block mandatory participation in Washington’s total government-run health care proposal.
This measure, if passed by the voters, would not allow fines or penalties to be levied against employers and individuals who opt out of government-run care and pay for their own health care. I believe we should protect our individual freedom and not let government bureaucrats gain more control over our lives. I think it is very unfortunate that the states are put into this position. I wish our congress would have addressed some of these issues before it got to the point that it is today, but those opportunities have passed us by.
The Senate Appropriations Committee continued its work this week with discussions on spending priorities and spending cuts to the Governor’s recommendations for the state’s Fiscal Year 2011 budget which begins July 1. It is no secret that deeper spending cuts will have to be made for next year’s budget, but thus far we are just trimming around the edges and rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.
At some point in the budget process, the politicians will have to accept the facts, make the spending cuts and balance the budget. However, I expect it may take a little longer than the regular legislative session for the Governor and the General Assembly to come to an agreement on difficult budget cuts. It looks like I may need to contact my landlord and extend the lease on my apartment.
I cannot stress to you enough the severity of the budget this year and even greater problems next year. With that in mind, the Senate this week broke from tradition on floor debate and split up into groups of four to study reforms to our state government. The group to which I was assigned dealt with tax credits and economic development. The department put forth a plan to rearrange our 61 tax credit programs into six more easily managed tax credit departments.
. . . .The only jobs we [government] create are ones that produce more red tape and bureaucracies. The private sector is the area that creates jobs --- our small business owners across the state. 92% of the jobs created in this state are created by small businesses, but we spend millions of dollars per year dangling out tax credits and incentives to lure 8% of the businesses to the state at the expense of the ones that are already here.
. . . . Given the current job situation, apparently what we have been doing in economic development is not proving to be successful. Sometimes simple answers for complex problems are better because we as a government have allowed simple problems to become so complex.
As always, I appreciate hearing your comments, opinions and concerns. I can be reached in Jefferson City at (573)751-1882, e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or write to me at 201 West Capitol Avenue, Room 420, Jefferson City, MO 65101.
Sunday, March 21, 2010
I could not "live blog" because I couldn't catch a connection strong enough or long enough to upload this from the Forum. I've only included the first three questions in this post because including all of the responses to all 9 questions would result in a extraordinary long post.
Only 7 of the 9 candidates running for U.S. Senate showed up at the MO Decides. On the outset, it was clear the Rep. Roy Blunt would be unlikely to attend, but since the so-called Health Care Reform vote is today, he did have a legitimate reason for not attending. Mike Vontz also did not attend because he traveled to DC to rally against the bill.
Question #1 : The U.S. Senate is one of the most powerful legislative bodies in these United States. Please explain why youʼre qualified to be a U.S. Senator. Please include if you have run for a political ofﬁce, and which public offices you have held.
I really wasn't impressed with most the answers I heard and didn't start logging my thoughts until Sen. Chuck Purgason gave the response:
"because I've helped balanced the budget in Missouri for the last 8 years."
"Basically my qualifications are the Constitution."
He did not say what it was, but I'm assuming he means that Art. 1 Sec. 2 sets a standard that he fits: he is a U.S. Citizen and has obtained the age of at least 25 years.
He's never run for office.
Question #2 : What would be your solution to solving the immigration crisis in America?
Sen. Purgason says...follow Art. 1, Section 8: Closed the border. He's a "proponent of a real fence."
#1 thing for our security; supports aggressive immigration enforcement policy. "If you come across illegally, we should send you back."
He's like to see campaign promises fulfilled campaign promises to build a fence.
Believes "we" [Republican Party] need to reach out to people of minority races.
She then reads direction from Christianity Today - America should grant legal status for illegal aliens.
[Each candidate could give two :30 second rebuttals; Solomon took an opportunity after a few other candidates answered to add:]
She agrees with encouraging businesses to use E-verify; "people should come to America if they want to be of help"; favor of English in all the schools because it "unties us all"; "many Hispanic people have made great contributions to our society
He became a nationalized Citizen in 1995; his Dad used visa to be migrant field worker starting in 1955. The same program my Dad used to come here doesn't make now.
He does not support "overnight" amnesty; but seems to support gradually granting amnesty with the caveat: "citizenship to those who want it." He seemed to imply that some illegal aliens don't deserve amnesty but some do but didn't give clear distinction here.
He later gave a rebuttal with some clarity: He's for strong borders, and national defense, but not for giving amnesty to those violating the liberties of other people; but honestly, hardworking illegals should be allowed to live the American dream.
Said: Illegal immigration is illegal. There is a process to come into this country...we pay $30,000 per year for keeping illegal aliens in our prisons.
Wants more usage of E-verify.
Supports building a wall.
Sends a strong message: "I'm not for any kind of amnesty."
James H. Schmidt:
"we don't have a physical border"; we need to put up fences or physical borders; we need to remove the incentives for coming here; we need to prosecute illegal aliens
policy changes aren't going to help; we need to enforce current policies
1. secure borders
2. enforce current policies
sending people back? 100 million? It would be difficult to send illegals back.
Question #3: According to the United States Constitution, under what circumstances may the federal government authorize military action?
peace through strength
pay fair wages for military (they did not get a pay increase in the last military budget appropriations bill apparently)
we need to build "strong friendships and relationships" with the international community [but later she did say she would vote for the U.S. to pull out of the U.N.]
work with the international community
we cannot be isolationists
He quoted from Article 2; the Constitution gives the president the right to declare war with consent of Congress. He said the president can do whatever he finds necessary in the first 100 days, but then Congress must declare war.
Kristi Nichol is for strong defense, diplomacy is a good tool. Mr. Obama propose a Cap & Trade tax greater than our national defense budget. We can't stand around all day without taking action.
Founders wisely gave the President the ability to respond to immediate threats.
All wars should be declared by Congress.
Keep military well funded to show our strength
We've spread ourselves all around the world that maybe we could bring home.
Congress has the right to declare war.
Belief: finish what we start and always protect ourselves
global camaraderie is nice but the US is where we live and its what we need to protect; protect swiftly
Situation where we are not allowed to "win" wars anymore. We refused to have an energy policy that allows America to be energy independent.
500,000 people died in a 3rd-world country because but we didn't go into defend them; we didn't go because that country doesn't produce oil
need to be aggressive countries developing Nuclear weapons
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Why can't I hear anything?
"I got no service in the club..."Yes, God, I'm just too busy right now. I doing so many things at the moment that I'm just unavailable.
"Wha-Wha-Waht did you say, huh?"I'm not sure what you want from me at the moment, God.
"Your're breaking up on me; I can't hear you."You see, "I'm kinda busy.
K-kinda busyCould you hold on, God? I just need a moment to catch my breath.
Sorry, I cannot hear you, I'm kinda busy.
Just a second,Yes, I'm doing too much right now to slow down and spend time with you. I might drop something, and I need time to relax.
It's my favorite song they're gonna play
And I cannot text you with
A drink in my hand, eh?
"You shoulda made some plans with me,God, I'm doing all the things you've called me to do and I just time for anything more...
You knew that I was free.
And now you won't stop calling me;
I'm kinda busy."
"Stop callin', stop callin',I'm feeling very worn out...
I don't wanna think anymore!"
"I left my head and my heart on the dance floor.God, I'm just too wrapped up in other things and just don't have any more of myself to give.
Stop callin'', stop callin,"
"I don't wanna talk anymore!God, I don't want to be too busy for you anymore but my flesh is weak is being draw to other things. It's not that I don't want to talk, I've just got so many others things on my mind. I've got big plans, you see...
I left my head and my heart on the dance floor."
Lord, please, awaken my soul to your calling. Give me a desire to want you above anything in this world.
John Piper, in his book God is the Gospel, includes a section from a sermon by J.C. Ryle called “Christ Is All” based on Colossians 3:11. In it he said:
"But alas, how little fit for heaven are many who talk of ‘going to heaven’ when they die, while they manifestly have no saving faith, and no real acquaintance with Christ. You give Christ no honor here. You have no communion with Him. You do not love Him. Alas! what could you do in heaven? It would be no place for you. Its joys would be no joys for you. Its happiness would be a happiness into which you could not enter. Its employments would be a weariness and burden to your heart. Oh, repent and change before it be too late!"John Piper then expounds that
"Nothing fits a person to be more useful on earth than to be more ready for heaven. This is true because readiness for heaven means taking pleasure in beholding the Lord Jesus, and beholding the glory of the Lord means being changed into his likeness (2 Cor. 3:18). Nothing would bless this world more than more people who are more like Christ. For in likeness to Christ the world might see Christ."Oh Lord, draw me to you. Awaken in my heart a passion to know you and treasure you above all things on this earth. Open my eyes to behold your goodness and embrace you above your great gifts. In Jesus name, Amen.