Surprise Solution To Deficit Reduction

I’m not going to weigh in on the spending cuts that the Republicans have identified.  It’s a lengthy list, which means I’m sure there are some things I agree with, and some that I disagree with.  But here’s one that stood out: Require collection of unpaid taxes by federal employees. $1 billion total savings.

Here are the facts, according to Richard Oppedisano, national secretary for the Federal Managers Association, who fears that proposed legislation in Congress goes to far attempting to collect delinquent tax bills:

“… [I]n 2008, federal employees, retirees, and active-duty and retired members of the armed services owed $3 billion in back taxes, former members of the military owed the largest portion of that amount — $1.3 billion. That year, 97,000 federal employees owed $962 million in unpaid taxes, Oppedisano said; that figure was down from 171,000 federal workers in 2007. He noted that almost 700 congressional staffers currently owe back taxes…”

Even well-paid Capitol Hill staffers felt that you should pay taxes, but they needn’t bother.

Obviously, these people got their tax advice from either Tom Daschle, Hilda Solis, Nancy Killefer, Ron Kirk or Tim Geithner.

— uo

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Published in: on January 22, 2011 at 9:56 am  Leave a Comment  

OOPS!

OOPS is an understatement.  From The New York Times:

In an unintended consequence of the new health care law, drug companies have begun notifying children’s hospitals around the country that they no longer qualify for large discounts on drugs used to treat rare medical conditions.

I think my favorite line in the article is from a House member who worked on the bill who said, “No one intended to take away any of the drug discounts that children’s hospitals already had.”

Maybe this is why Nancy Pelosi said, “But we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.”  Hey Nancy, maybe you and your law writer comrades  should have thought about what you legislation would really do before you passed it!

Don’t ever forget, the politicians in Washington pretend to be smarter than you.  But they’re not.  They’re just better credentialed.

— uo

Published in: on December 9, 2010 at 11:26 pm  Leave a Comment  

Your Tax Dollars At Work: WWII — It Was All Our Fault

If you pay U.S. Federal Income Tax, some of your money goes to funding the study of “humanities”.  The tax-supported National Endowment for the Humanities sponsored a conference in Hawaii on the Pacific War (World War II in the Pacific).

Here’s what was taught: Pearl Harbor was all our fault, due to U.S. imperialism; veterans are delusional now, they were war criminals then; anybody who appreciates the liberation provided by the U.S. is actually a victim of U.S., blinded by our propaganda.

Here’s what you need to know: The conference was taxpayer supported.  The faculty teaching at the conference were primarily from public universities that are tax payer supported.  The purpose of the conference was to spread this information to taxpayer supported community college educators across the country.

And yet, the politicians in Washington can’t seem to figure out why taxpayers are fed up with wasteful spending.

— uo

Published in: on November 1, 2010 at 10:50 am  Leave a Comment  

Undisputed Champ

New research proves it.  The revered Chairman Mao is the undisputed champ.

45 million in 4 years.

Next time you see some idiot wearing a Mao T-shirt, congratulate them for their superior intellect in wearing apparel emblazoned with a pic of the “greatest of all time”.

— uo

Published in: on September 21, 2010 at 9:14 pm  Comments (1)  

GM: “Repayment of the Bailout, which we paid back in full, could take years”

What the hell does that mean?

In April, GM famously declared that they had paid back the bailout “in full”.  Here’s the lead paragraph that the GM CEO Big Ed Whitacre wrote in his own words:

Today, General Motors is announcing that it has made a payment of $5.8 billion to the U.S. Treasury and Export Development Canada. We’re paying back—in full, with interest, years ahead of schedule—loans made to help fund the new GM.

Good for them … or perhaps not.  Lots of people smelled a rat, and they were right.  Because it seems as if Ed left out a few important facts when he said “in full” just before he retired.  Here’s what GM said today:

It will take a couple of years for taxpayers to get back the billions they spent bailing out General Motors, but the company has a goal of returning the money, GM’s new CEO said Thursday.  CEO Daniel Akerson told reporters that the government won’t be repaid with the company’s initial public stock offering, which could happen later this year…”

It’s blatant lies about all the bailouts and the stimulus like this gem Whitacre blared in April that fuels movements like the tea party.

— uo

Published in: on September 16, 2010 at 2:36 pm  Leave a Comment  

“No good dead goes unpunished”

This is exactly what Claire Boothe Luce had in mind when she wrote that famous aphorism:

Raft guide arrested after helping stranded rafter

— uo

Published in: on June 12, 2010 at 8:57 am  Leave a Comment  

From The Marketing Geniuses at Government Motors

I am not making this up.  In one of the greatest brain farts since New Coke, the folks at GM have instructed everyone at the central planning HQ to stop using the name Chevy.  SERIOUSLY!!  From today’s New York Times:

On Tuesday, G.M. sent a memo to Chevrolet employees at its Detroit headquarters, promoting the importance of “consistency” for the brand, which was the nation’s best-selling line of cars and trucks for more than half a century after World War II.

And one way to present a consistent brand message, the memo suggested, is to stop saying “Chevy,” though the word is one of the world’s best-known, longest-lived product nicknames.

“We’d ask that whether you’re talking to a dealer, reviewing dealer advertising, or speaking with friends and family, that you communicate our brand as Chevrolet moving forward,” said the memo, which was signed by Alan Batey, vice president for Chevrolet sales and service, and Jim Campbell, the G.M. division’s vice president for marketing.

Apparently, the folks who run chevrolet.com didn’t get the memo yet, or they’re too busy.  Because there are literally hundreds, if not thousands of references to “Chevy” on the website and on the websites of partners.

You know, it was just a month ago that Peter De Lorenzo was unloading yet again on the marketers at GM, only that time his ire was directed at Cadillac.  I can’t wait to see what he thinks of the change at Chevy … I mean Chevrolet.

— uo

Update – I categorized this as funny because sometimes stupidity is laughable.  But I also categorized it as not funny because it’s taxpayer money that kept this kind of idiocy at GM afloat!  And on that note:



Published in: on June 10, 2010 at 3:39 pm  Leave a Comment  

This A**hole Is Lucky He Doesn’t Live In China

This retraction really isn’t any new earth-shattering news.  Just another chapter in a terrible saga.

Medical journal retracts study linking autism to vaccine

(CNN) — The medical journal The Lancet on Tuesday retracted a controversial 1998 paper that linked the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine to autism.

The 12-year-old study linked autism with the MMR vaccine. The research subsequently had been discredited.

Last week, the study’s lead author, Dr. Andrew Wakefield, was found to have acted unethically in conducting the research.

The General Medical Council, which oversees doctors in Britain, said that “there was a biased selection of patients in The Lancet paper” and that his “conduct in this regard was dishonest and irresponsible.”

A September 2008 study replicated key parts of Wakefield’s original paper and found no evidence that the vaccine had a connection to either autism or GI disorders. The study, conducted at Columbia University, Massachusetts General Hospital and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, also found no relationship between the timing of the vaccine and children getting GI disorders or autism.

The Wakefield study also became part of the evidence that parents cited who did not vaccinate their children.

“The story became credible because it was published in The Lancet,” Alison Singer, president of the Autism Science Foundation, said Tuesday. “It was in The Lancet, and we really rely on these medical journals.”

Singer, the mother of a child with autism, added, “That study did a lot of harm. People became afraid of vaccinations — this is the Wakefield legacy — this unscientifically grounded fear of vaccinations that result in children dying from vaccine preventable diseases.

Retractions are rare in medical journals and usually occur as a result of fraud or plagiarism, said Marcia Angell, a former editor of The New England Journal of Medicine.

So kids got measles, mumps and rubella and some may have died because they didn’t take the vaccine based on a study that was so rife with errors that a medical journal had to pull the article.

My question is, why would a doctor fabricate a study like this?  Brian Deer finds out:

ANDREW WAKEFIELD, the former surgeon whose campaign linking the MMR vaccine with autism caused a collapse in immunisation rates, was paid more than £400,000 by lawyers trying to prove that the vaccine was unsafe.

Yowza!  So it was all about the money!!  By the way, it wasn’t just Wakefield.  He had all his cronies feeding from the trough too.

Meanwhile, China shows how to properly deal with the kind of person that would put his own personal gain above the health of society.

China executes ex-head of food and drug agency: Zheng sentenced to death in May for taking bribes to OK substandard drugs

I mean, what’s the difference?  Taking bribes to approve substandard drugs that would have kept people from dying had the drugs been real?  Or taking bribes from plaintiffs’ lawyers to proclaim a life-saving drug is unsafe, causing patients to get sick and perhaps die unnecessarily?

Andrew, you’re lucky you don’t live in China.

— uo

P.S. – The CNN article at the top of this post sure is a heck of a lot better than that earlier one.

Published in: on February 2, 2010 at 10:49 pm  Comments (1)  

A Breathtaking Level of Stupidity

I usually don’t like to directly call a person stupid.  I do think that certain people believe they’re far smarter than they really are.  But in this instance, the level of idiocy is simply mind-blowing.  Sarah E. Mendelson of the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, who despite having studied the issue intensively, has this to say:

“It’s obviously proven a lot more difficult than a lot of us expected to close Guantánamo.”

Hey you idiot who has studied this issue intensively and are still too stupid to know that this was a dumb idea, leave the “us” out of it.  Only an imbecile like yourself would have thought that closing Guantánamo would be easy.  The reason it would be so difficult is this concept called UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES.  Have you ever heard of that you freakin’ moron?

You can’t just shut that prison down.  You either have to release the prisoners, move them, or try them.  There are no other choices.

If you move them, where are you going to put them?  The U.S.?  Not a chance.  Mayor Bloomberg finally figured how stupid that was.  Move them to another country?  Are you kidding?  Nobody else wants them.  So moving them is out.

How about releasing them?  I think the release of those Yemeni prisoners who returned to jihad to fight again put an end to that.  So you can’t release them.

So now what?  That leaves only two choices.  Try them or hold them without trial.  You can’t do the latter, so you have to try them.  But where?  And when?

More important, why?  No al-Qaeda member is going to get a fair trial.  After all, the president’s own press secretary Robert Gibbs has already told us what the outcome of the trial is going to be.  Not only that, he has told us what the sentence will be (which means he knows the verdict will be guilty).  Talk about jury tampering!!

I’m telling you, these people advising the president, especially Eric Holder, are morons.  President Obama is making horrible decisions.  He’s dropping in the polls is because everybody now knows how bad those decisions are.

— uo

Published in: on January 31, 2010 at 1:07 pm  Comments (1)  

Obama Targets Tax Cheats

President Obama is cracking down on tax cheats.  Believe it or not, the president had to use his executive authority to bar deadbeat companies from doing business with the government.  Apparently, stiffing the government did not disqualify you from getting money from the taxpayer!

You know, only in government does something like this actually have to be spelled out for the people who dispense our money!

Despite the fact that it’s ridiculous that he even has to tell people not to deal with deadbeats, I’m glad he’s doing it.  My only question is, what about these guys?

  1. Tim Geithner
  2. Tom Daschle (with comment)
  3. Nancy Killefer
  4. Hilda Solis
  5. Rahm Emanuel (disputed)
  6. Ron Kirk
  7. Kathleen Sebelius

Every single one of them a tax “cheat”.  If you ever needed any evidence as to why people are mad at government and voting out incumbents, this is it.  Politicians pass rules for you and me, but they don’t follow the rules themselves.

And believe me, this is just the list from the administration.  If I were to put together the list of tax cheaters in Congress, I’d be  days.

— uo

Published in: on January 20, 2010 at 10:50 pm  Comments (1)