"Torture" edited for bias style

Here are the headlines…

Washington Post: Interrogation Details Emerge
CNN: Bush-era interrogation memo: No torture without ‘severe pain’ intent
New York Times: Interrogation Memos Detail Harsh Tactics by the C.I.A.
LA Times: Memos reveal CIA interrogation methods
Wall Street Journal: CIA Memos Released; Immunity for Harsh Tactics
[note headline on home page differs No Prosecution for Waterboarding ]
Fox News: Administration: No Charges Against Waterboarders

Scoring on the bias scale; I would commend the Washington Post and LA Times headliners. New York Times [shock] is the most liberally biased headline. CNN is not bad but adds a bit of detail to the headline. WSJ is interesting… the front page is taking a completely different angle then the headline of the article itself… [different folks with different philosophies?]. Fox loses on the the conservative end of the scale for missing the whole release of the documents and jumping to the end story.

On to the content…[in progress]

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"Torture" edited for bias style

Here are the headlines…

Washington Post: Interrogation Details Emerge
CNN: Bush-era interrogation memo: No torture without ‘severe pain’ intent
New York Times: Interrogation Memos Detail Harsh Tactics by the C.I.A.
LA Times: Memos reveal CIA interrogation methods
Wall Street Journal: CIA Memos Released; Immunity for Harsh Tactics
[note headline on home page differs No Prosecution for Waterboarding ]
Fox News: Administration: No Charges Against Waterboarders

Scoring on the bias scale; I would commend the Washington Post and LA Times headliners. New York Times [shock] is the most liberally biased headline. CNN is not bad but adds a bit of detail to the headline. WSJ is interesting… the front page is taking a completely different angle then the headline of the article itself… [different folks with different philosophies?]. Fox loses on the the conservative end of the scale for missing the whole release of the documents and jumping to the end story.

Tea Party Atlanta Biggest and Best

I was there, I was proud and I was surprised. I had hoped for 5,000 people and a ratio 9 to 1 (90% normal people and 10% nut jobs). I was surprised on both counts.

The counts coming in are north of 10,000 and may be as high as 20,000 people. I could not tell because I was up close and surrounded on all sides by 1000s. The fact is that it was filling the street sidewalk to sidewalk for at least four city blocks. How many people is that? Do we allow 4 sq feet per person? Personal space be damned… Putting this to the reasonably test [2 lane road (20ft wide), side walk and curb (5 ft: assuming only one side), four city blocks (.4 miles or 2112 ft) = 52800 sq.ft. / 4sq.ft. per person == 13200 people]. Sounds reasonable on the low side. Add in the grass area, wider streets or longer blocks or less personal space and north of 15,000 is likely. In any case, a mass of humanity that far exceeded our expectations.

As far as the ratio goes, might be about right on the high side, from my point of view. This counts FairTax folks, smaller government, Bush bashers in the normal Obama bashers in the extremist. I counted 12 signs (and people) that I felt were over the top and 100s that I would like to drink a beer with and talk again. To give you a flavor of the crowd there was a group (of two) people behind us that tried to start an “Impeach Obama” chant (maybe 7-10 times). Each time is was them and them alone. The fist couple were immediately drowned out by “USA USA” or “FAIR TAX NOW”. After that they were met with shaking heads and laughter. One guy (in the AJC video [:35]…in front of me… oh yes EFB got air time…and on FOX [2:00]) had his sign taken away. This caused a few around me to get a bit upset about free speech and a few chants of “Give it back.” But the dominant conversation around me was about not letting that ruin the night or become the news item. In the end, cooler heads prevailed [on both sides] and they did give him his sign back; with an apology from the local police. They told him they were only doing as they were told before and they were now told to give it back. Much friendly conversations after that. All in all a decent time and Ms. Napolitano now knows where I am.

I will say that the AJC article was pretty well done and the photos there are a better representation then the video.

Most of the people I talked to were participating in their first political rally (as was I). I would like to thank Sean Hannity for organizing this event… oh wait that was Neal Boortz for.. Dick Army… no .. Newt Gingrich. Well, whoever it was on the vast right-wing for flying around the country and training all these organizers in local towns these past 6 weeks. I think they all earned their union wages this week. [tongue firmly implanted in cheek] I know the local folks here personally and I know that they like many of us that attended are doing this for the first time. The volume of people and the expansion of events pooping up these past few weeks has been nothing but astounding.

There are a few signs I felt were worth mentioning:
What’s in your wallet? HEY that’s MY wallet!

To my God and my guns I cling, I will never bow to a Saudi King.
Spread my work ethic, not my wealth.
Big [GOP logo] BIGGER [DNC logo] BIGGEST [Obama]
Oh and one more… That would be mine signed by John Rich.

Appetite for our debt is waning.

The small stock market rally was stopped cold today due to a upward movement in the sale of five year notes. For those that have been warning us about these days, this article is the beginning of the proof points on deficit spending. The market saw this news and dropped almost 250 points from 1:00pm until 3:00pm.

Here are the basics as I understand them. The increase in the interest rate on the 5-year notes sold by the US means that we had to raise the rate of return to attract buyers to our debt. Nested in this article is the fact that the UK has had issues that did not even sell out. So we raised the rate and sold the notes, why did the market react to this? Having to increase the rates means that there are less buyers for our debt. The rates can continue to climb to attract buyers but that interest expands the cost of all of the deficit spending programs. Should we hit the point as the UK has that sometimes there just are not enough buyers, what then?

Then we have three options.

Don’t spend (ha ha ha ha … sorry that was President Obama butting in) as much money. Which would limit the government’s ability to fulfill all of the promises to the banks and in the stimulus package. Many will say this is good, but for those dependant on every word and action from Washington this is not good news.

So another option is to tax and tax heavily to get the money from the US economy instead of elsewhere. This is not good and will likely lengthen and deepen the recession. This would counter all of the good news this week that the economy may be stabilizing.

Or we can simply print money that does not exist and pretend. But that devalues all of the outstanding notes and is likely to make the current problem worse, causing us to raise the rates anyway to attract buyers.

So this action in the 5-years notes is bad news… very bad news. The end of our deficit spending may be at hand or at least far more limited. And we have not even approached the 2009 budget and the 10Trillion in debt it demands.

Death on the slopes! But something is missed.

I have heard all the tragic stories surrounding Natasha Richardson’s death but one thing is missing from every story I found.

As would be expected, the left is all about taking away freedom, demanding helmet laws and ignoring personal responsibility and risk. They will compare this freak accident to other head traumas and add it to the statistics of 50,000 deaths. But most of those are car accidents or blunt trauma to the head. If you look at skiing accidents and death, you drop to 50 or 60 a year (out of 8million+ skiers). Of those most are risk takers on black diamond runs or collisions [and they will equate this to those]. Most [I dare say no others] are a simple fall on a beginner slope. It is like comparing jumping off a swingset to jumping out of an airplane. Where are the calls for helmets and parachutes on playgrounds? Helmets and five point harnesses for all passengers in cars? There are degrees of risk and adults accept those risks when the undertake actions. It is called personal responsibility [dare I use the word Freedom or Liberty] and this country was founded on it. I hope the her family can come to grips with this freak accident and find peace in their lives without joining the media in trying to take freedom from others.

But what part of the story is missing? Let’s take a look at the timeline. Richardson had a skiing accident at a resort 80 miles outside of Montreal, Canada. Thinking nothing was wrong she was accompanied to her hotel by the instructor and a member of the ski patrol. An hour later she said she didn’t feel well. She had a headache, so we sent her to the hospital. An ambulance was called and Richardson eventually was transferred to Sacre-Coeur hospital in Montreal. Richardson was then flown to New York.

This is what I noticed. She was in Canada where heath care is the envy of the American left and she flew to New York. She did not stay in Montreal where her husband was filming. She did not fly to England, the country of her birth. She flew to New York. The capitalist home of expensive health care [Not to mention the best heath care with the best facilities and most researched doctors in the world].

This accident is truly a time to reflect and learn. Not about helmet laws but about the quality of health care in the world and the choices people make in a time of need.

What could you do with $9,000 dollars a year for three years?

+$1.15T being injected into the Financial market. Washington has now put in $9T to “fix” the economy. This is 89,000+ per household in the US. I am trying to find the statistics but I would think we could have just paid up the mortgages on everyone at risk for far less. But like many of these plans that too would have been rewarding failure by taking from the shrinking majority that pay taxes. So what to do.

I would expect that most people do not have a mortgage over $1500 a month. I looked it up. Based on all homes the number is $927. Yeah… always forget when you live in a big city or suburb. This number is also lowered by folks that have $0 cost for housing (paid off home mortgage). There is a number for homes less than four years old ($1,371). If you remove the 112,000 of these folks that have no mortgage the average rises to $1,392. These numbers are from 2007. So a gut check of $1500 a month works.

So for a cost of 9,000 a household the US government could have covered 6 months of payments on the average house for every person in the country. For nearly 44% of homeowners this would cover 100% of their housing costs. [Because of this cost discrepancy this would actually cost less than the price tag]. Allow this exemption for 5 years at a total of 45,000 per family. That would be about $4.5T.

Wouldn’t this have stopped the rash of foreclosures? That would have stabilized the securities market at created a floor on the price of securities. This would have, in turn, stabilized the banks. It would have also [not sure I like this] allowed people to buy houses off of the open market knowing that the first 5 years of mortgage was covered. This would have stabalized housing prices. With a bit of diligence to manage the out years, this could be constrained so that it does not simply defer the problems. For those without a “mortgage crisis” [93% of all homeowners] this would have created spendable income that would likely be used to pay off debt and/or buy things [stimulus].

In summary, for half of the current cost this could have been solved. I would have been content with 3 years (or 1/3 the cost). If some are worried about non-homeowners being left out, don’t fret. I set you up. These numbers include housing costs by households, which includes renters. I checked and there are actually less households (105mill) then homeowners (123mill – owners of multiple homes). Since we don’t want to reward on both homes, we can assume it will cost even less. So for three years every household would get $9,000…. Question..wouldn’t this in effect be an “across-the-board tax cut” [ewwww… I know those are evil]. And this one would be far bigger then the Bush tax cuts. It is important to note that some suggested this (and for only 2009) and were lambasted for not having a Government-centric solution.
..and so we spend.

The economy continues to worsen and the costs to taxpayers keeps rising. Once again proof that “government experts” spend more time reading books and talking to each other about how much smarter they are then the rest of us; no time living life like the rest of us. They look at macro-economic issues and forget that those numbers are driven by the hard work of every American, every day. They all need a new line of work. One that actually produces something for the country. I believe that will help the economy. We have a chance in 2010 to help that along.

"Barack Obama is the smartest President"?

Have you heard it before? We have all heard how “dumb” George Bush is/was. I think it is about time to reveal that there is a big difference between book-smart and street-smart; Obama being the former and in no way the latter. The media being much of the former as well, has little to no respect for the latter. I guess, for the sake of honesty, I would be the reverse. I respect more what people have done and how the interact with people then I do what their grades were and where they went to school.

Obama can’t find the door.
1. Might have seen this one. Yes that is a window. Dear Sir, Please note that there are no hinges or a handle. I am sure you have seen this one (again and again). But note it has handles and hinges and is simply locked. Even when it is covered, Bush must be mentioned and bashed. Mr. Obama simply “hasn’t gotten acquainted” with his surroundings. That was not an excuse for Mr. Bush who was in CHINA. The Bush gaff was often labelled “Bush has no Exit Strategy”; including by the network news (see below). Is also became a top ten list on Letterman.

In the opening tease at 7:00am, co-host Charlie Gibson announced over video of Bush trying to open the locked doors: “No way out. President Bush tries the wrong door on his trip to Asia and has fun for the cameras. But the big question now: Does he have an exit strategy for Iraq?”

Not the same “oops, ha ha” coverage Obama got is it?

Gifts for our UK “friends”.
2. Anyone can make a silly honest mistake…but it take a special person to insult a respected ally. Have you heard about the gift exchange between President Obama and Gordon Brown (UK Prime Minister)? Probably not. This article covered it but missed one of the gifts given to our President; The framed commission from the ship that was used to make his desk. How thoughtful and personal. And from the US 25 pack of DVDs. I hope they were not Region 1 (US) encoded. I am sure their were personalized by making sure they were Region 2. Like school on the weekend… no class.

Obama the stock advisor.
3. The confidence his policies give the stock market has been pretty obvious. Maybe one of those books he reads should have include the definition of P/E Ratio (Price to Earnings). Of course, his definition may explain a lot of his policies. I am so glad we have someone so smart now running our economy. No sense in leaving it in the hands of those Bankers and Finance folks. By the way Price to Earnings only matters when there are Earnings! Otherwise, it is called speculation .. a practice that helped us all so much in the Internet boom.

More brilliance to come, I am sure.