Monday, December 29, 2008

The 2009 resolution I wish would happen

What do you hope for in 2009?

A simple question. Some are making resolutions to lose weight, or quit smoking. Some hope for world peace, a less polluted planet, or just a few less guns on the streets. Some pray for fame, other wish to have their work recognized. And in these troubled times more than a few just want to be able to make ends meet for one more year for their family, friends, and themselves.

All are good things, and I hope each one comes true. But for myself I would like to see honesty.

Right now the nation is preparing to peaceful switch power from President Bush to President-elect Obama. IT will be the first time a Black man has ever held so high an office in this nation. Some fear that, as if the national sport will become basketball or fried chicken will replace hamburgers - and I have heard such drivel. Some believe that this will end all forms of racism left in the nation, as if the declared movies and television shows of 2009 will magically be infused with African Americans, Hispanics, Asians and other cultures at the stroke of midnight.

Neither is going to happen. Both are dreams based in a dishonest expectation of America. And that's why I hope for honesty.

I would love to hear the hypocrits in Hollywood admit that they are one of the last bastions of discrimination. In front of and behind the camera. Because there is no other reason for the abysmal diversity in that industry, even though they love to present stories of diversity and change via their medium.

I would love to hear the extreme left and right tell us that they are promoting some laws and issues just because they want to piss-off the other side. Why else would they not compromise and enact legislation that benefits more people than their bickering and inaction prevents being helped.

I would love to hear racists or whatever race publicly discuss their rationale for their hate. Not with anger or threats but actual debate, so all of us can see the folly in every conclusion. And at least then we all would know what we are actually dealing with.

I would love to have various industries explain why products created today, with superior technology, cannot endure half as long as decades older products made with inferior products still in use.

I would love to hear the radicals that believe in global warming, or global freezing, sit back and admit that there is nothing to prove what they believe, even though it can't hurt us to improve the planet. I would enjoy hearing them state the fact that the Earth changes over time, whether we like it or not, in ways we cannot predict any better than an earthquake and that adapting to the changes is smarter than trying to stop them.

It's all about honesty. Because there is honesty in what I have said, but not what we read and hear everyday. Because some need to be right, even when they are partially wrong. Because some have just a bit more greed than is good for anyone. Because some want power at all costs. And because many people fear any type of change at all.

If 2009 can be a year of honesty, real truth, it will be a year of great changes. Not all of those changes will be pleasant, comfortable, or good for everyone. In fact I would expect everyone to be upset with various aspects of knowing, or acknowledging, the truth. But once that discomfort is over, once the change is past imagine what the world could be like.

Some things will still be unfair, some things will still be harder than they need to be. Some wrongs will go unpunished and everyone won't have everything they want or need. But most things will be better. Closer to equitable. Just that much more balanced. Just that much more improved.

Life is never without struggle. Living is a daily challenge that we all lose at some point. But if we could be just that much more honest, it would be one less thing to have to strive against. One less hurdle to muster strength for. One more thing we all could pat ourselves on the back for having achieved.

Am I asking for too much? Probably is the honest answer. We are all very ingrained with the lifestyles we lead right now. To be honest would be akin to being brutal at this point. There is just too much vested in the continuation of what is happening right now.

So Hollywood will remain biased, politics will continue to be ineffective. Business will take advantage, and the planets resources will dwindle. Things will slowly, at least part of the time, get worse. And we will all get a little deeper into the vortex.

But I can still imagine it different, and as long as some of us can do that we have the potential to change.

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Monday, December 22, 2008

The ghost of Christmas past invades the credit crisis

Oh the horror. Now you have your choice of what the horror is. The $188 billion spent on the mortgage/bank bailout so far, the latest news from AP stating that in 2007 banks paid $1.6 billion on salaries and compensation, or the fact that Barney Frank dares to question anyones work ethic.

"Most of us sign on to do jobs, and we do them best we can," said Frank. "We're told that some of the most highly paid people in executive positions are different. They need extra money to be motivated!"

Frank is head if the Banking Committee in Congress and failed to do his job all year long. He thought the sale of Bear Sterns would end the crisis. Then he thought that Freddie and Fannie Mae were fine. Then he thought AIG would end the mess. And so on. He either needs new batteries in his calculator, or we need a new head of the Banking Committee - you can guess which I suggest.

But back to the point at hand.

I don't care that last year the banking industry spent way too much money. That has nothing to do with the current problem. That's the thing these days in politics. You need ratings or you want to get positive results, polispeak on the past and you look like a genius. Too bad that hides the fact you don't know your ass from your elbow right now.

Have many executives gotten paid too much? Hell yes. I have no problem with the thought that an executive that comes to a company and improves it such that the jobs are secure and profits are up, getting a bonus, that is the concept after all. But being paid exceptional amounts for piss poor work and endangering the company makes no sense. I mean it's not like an executive can't survive on the tens of millions they get paid as salary in the top companies.

But this is an issue going forward. It really doesn't matter if the CEO gets a driver, or financial planning advice as a perk. That isn't enough money to matter. In total that is maybe 3 employees of the company saved, and nothing else. It wouldn't even show up on the companies liabilites sheet.

Though seeing where the company valued it's mortgages, and when, makes a big difference. Looking at what debt instruments the company is still using makes a difference. Looking to see if the bank is loading every bad debt and problem asset into the bailout money is worth knowing. The other stuff is a trifle meant only to gain readers and sell newspapers.

Executive pay is in all the headlines these days, driving the mantra of Democrats that regulation is good. But all this bluster hides a couple of simple things. You can't legislate good or bad business decisions. Oversight means nothing if the person in Congress is not smart enough to understand what they are reviewing. And the most important, the more the Government is involved with private business the more screwed up and like the Post Office it becomes.

So when you think of the horros of 2008, perhaps that last thought is the only one that really matter.

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Caroline Kennedy - a name with no place in politics

I've waited for a while now, just waiting for something from Caroline Kennedy to justify or remove her from consideration in replacing Senator Hillary Clinton. Mind you that I am not sorry to see Senator Clinton gone from office, as I am tired of her excuses on the broken promises that mark her time in New York. Though I am greatly saddened to see her working anywhere near the Executive Branch. But long-term readers know that, and this is about Kennedy.

Up til now there can be no question that Caroline Kennedy has zero qualifications for the Senate. She is a lawyer, like much of Congress. She is a Democrat, which at the moment gives her a boost. And she is the daughter of a revered dead President. Because if we are honest, that is the only reason any of us know her name.

Since she has never been politically active, which is a problem for me with anyone that would be Senator, we need to look at other aspects of this woman. She is part of the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, which I personally like but is not enough. She has worked for 2 years, 2002-4, and rose $65 million in private funds for schools in New York which is great. The job was only 3 days a week though and one must wonder how much money she could have raised if she worked a full 5 days, the schools in NY could have used the extra effort.

Still none of this is a qualification. Yes she helps people, and is a committed Democrat. But what can she do? And what does she plan to do to help the state in this very critical time? The New York Times and other news media had the same question and asked her just that on several issues. The answers reveal quite a bit.

Mrs. Schlossberg is shrewd, having given a total of $7300 to Clinton before she switched to Obama in September of that year and gave him $2300. At the same time she has not voted in numerous Primaries since 1988. So we can understand she is willing to let her money vote for her.

In addition we now know that she supports same-sex marriage, which 68% of the nation opposes - even in California and New York. Something that neither Clinton nor Obama support. Which makes me believe she is even more liberal than the former most liberal member of Congress - President Obama.

It also seems that she opposes any restriction on abortion. This is another far-left Democrat policy stance. It includes, and Kennedy defered to not answer about, partial birth abortions. Even those in favor of abortion have issues with that. But seemingly not Kennedy, though she prefers to avoid having to make polispeak about such a position.

And in a hat tip to the Pelosi led Congress, she supports the mandating of public vote at unions. Thus taking away the normal right of secret ballots, and forcing workers to deal with peer pressure and criticism for co-workers and management. How kind.

And of course she is in favor of the auto bailout. Something that all Democrats are pushing to advance, though none have answered a simple question. When the auto industry came back to Congress after using up $25 billion in bailout money in one month, they stated that they HAD to have $50 billion or they would fail. Congress is trying to provide $15-35 billion instead, with a "car czar" (otherwise known as more government interference resulting in another Barney Frank). Since this is not $50 billion, and thus means the auto industry will fail and/or come back for more money, why does she support the lesser amount? No Democrat has a good answer for that, though they have been very good at avoiding the question.

And we know that Kennedy is anti-gun, which places her at odds with most of the state - except New York City. And it is the City that NY politicians proffer to.

Speaking of which, surprisingly she backs her uncles plan to make illegal immigrants (otherwise known as undocumented workers - the missing document is a greencard and reason to be in the U.S.) citizens. Pay a fine and swear in. We might as well make citizenship available on eBay.

But in a question that hits the pockets of the people in the state Kennedy is mum about capping property taxes. Or on taxing the higher income brackets more (which still would not make up the shortfall that the new spending creates).

So all in all what can we surmise? Kennedy is a liberal the likes of which we have not had in this state as far back as I can remember. She is more liberal than Clinton, and Obama. And if you wonder why might that be a bad thing recall this. Senator Clinton PROMISED to bring 200,000 jobs to New York State if upstate New York voted her in. We have lost over 30,000 jobs as of 2007, long before the current crisis hit.

Do you believe a more liberal, pro-illegal immigrant, anti-second ammendment, spend and tax, lawyer with no experience in politics would be a good Senator? Without the last name, the answer can only be no. But what Gov. Patterson decides will happen. Sadly.

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Saturday, December 20, 2008

Introducing the 2009 calendar model for M V Consulting - Ashley France

Just wanted to take a moment to make my readers aware of our latest photo shoot which features Ms. Ashley France. The shoot covers most of the custom designed women's clothing available at our online store including the Wanna Ride, Respect My Mind, You'll do, and Nothing Sexier clothing lines among many others.

Every clothing item in the video, and 1500 more, are available. There are clothes for men and women, Black, White, Hispanic/Latino, virtually every person that is a reader of the sites of M V Consulting, Inc.

Watch the video then check out the calendar and clothes. Let us know what you think.

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Thursday, December 18, 2008

When the Clinton ledger hits daylight

$492 million in 11 years. That is a heft sum of money, just under $45 million a year. Talk about an annual pay that dwarfs the imagination. And almost all of it comes from overseas. And some think that the world has stopped investing in America.

Of course this is not investments in America as in the stock market. This was not money put into real estate or any other investment. Unless you call the Presidency and top level American politics an investment. Which obviously more than a few do.

All of this has been revealed now that former President Bill Clinton has divulged the 205,000 names of those that donated to the William J. Clinton Foundation (it only took 10 years to be told). And when I say donated I mean a lot of money.The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia gave $10 million to $25 million, Amar Singh, Suzlon Energy Ltd. of Amsterdam, Nasser Al-Rashid, Lakshmi Mittal, Harold Snyder, Sheikh Mohammed H. Al-Amoudi, Mala Gaonkar Haarman, Lukas Lundin, Victor Pinchuk, all gave gave $1 million to $5 million. And of course there is also Denise Rich, who gave the foundation at least $450,000. She just happens to be the wife of Marc Rich - recipient of a President Clinton pardon.

Some other names that bring up questions include Frank Giustra who gave $31.3 million following a 2-day visit by Bill Clinton to Kazakhstan that resulted in his gaining control of uranium mining in a astounding move in the mining industry.

Amar Singh is an Indian politician that has spoken with Senator Hillary Clinton recently about nuclear arms on behalf of his nation.

Suzlon Energy makes it's money in creating wind turbines, the number one energy initiative of Democrats, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (who owns stock in that industry).

China Overseas Real Estate Development - which gave between $250,000 and $500,000 is interesting. Especially for those focused on how much China has bought into the U.S.

Perhaps one of the oddest donations to me is that of COPRESIDA-Secretariado Tecnico for some $10 to $25 million dollars. COPRESIDA was created by the Dominican Republic government to fight AIDS. Considering the relatively poor nation's funds, why would they donate so much of their budget to a foundation instead of to AIDS drugs, researchers, or promotions focused on awareness and prevention?

In a similar vein a question would be the $10 to $25 million from Children's Investment Fund Foundation - a group that is dedicated to helping children, primarily in Africa and India. Would that same money not be better spent in Africa and India on food, clothing, building secure homes, clean water and so on directly?

But looking at all the major donors, and looking back on the timing of many of the investments - excuse me, donations - the question quickly becomes if Hillary Clinton can be an objective Secretary of State. Her long term involvement in the gains of her husband, and the governments he has 'worked' with cause pause. Like how will Pakistan trust her neutrality when Indian interests provide her and Bill Clinton so much money. Or when thinking about Marc Rich the question of whether she can be bought arises.

The Secretary of State is supposed to be without agenda, beyond the message of the President. Somehow this does not appear to be within the capabilities of Senator Clinton. Something that was apparent to me throughout the Democratic Primaries.

But a Democrat-led Congress, with a President that is as liberal as the Party has, and a Democratic Party still looking to smooth the ruffled feathers of 18 million of their voters, is likely to overlook almost anything. Not that this in any way is to the benefit of the nation.

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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Gay Marriage - Jon Stewart and Mike Huckabee debate

Another interesting thing that occurred on the Daily Show, when Mike Huckabee appeared is the conversation covering gay marriage. Jon Stewart and Mike Huckabee debated the conservative and liberal view on this controversial topic. And it was very clear than neither man would ever budge from the position they held.

From the Huckabee perspective is a view that I do agree with. Marriage is a union for the primary purpose of procreation and the growth of a family. That has been it's constant purpose in all recorded time. Thus any union that does not match this purpose is not a marriage, though it can be a union, loving, and positive.

From the Stewart perspective is the thought that to deny gay marriage is akin to promoting segregation. That a union of any 2 people must be recognized by the name of marriage. And in that perspective is the subtle thought that in not receiving this title other privileges of marriage are also not conferred.

Note the difference. There is an inference that is never stated. And it is not valid, since the Huckabee view does not preclude or block unions receiving the same privileges as marriage. The stumbling block is the word. Many liberals demand this word, and in doing so want to rewrite laws such that there is no limit.

Under the Liberal view (perhaps the most liberal) unions between polygamists must be recognized as legal marriages too. And underage marriages. And any other form of union that today is excluded by law. Because each of these can be described by the same loving union descriptor used to justify gay marriage.

Now Stewart uses the argument used by many liberals, this is the same as segregation or the ban on interracial marriage. Which is both a lie and using racial injustice as a crutch. And it annoys me when I hear such comments.

Racially based bias and unjust laws are focused on the color of skin of a person. There is no changing, no hiding, no misunderstanding of what color skin you have. When you walk down a street and glance at people passing you cannot tell if they are gay or straight, Jewish or Muslim or Christian, a Harvard graduate or a high school dropout - unless that person makes a clear and distinctive decision to make such apparent. But at that exact same time and moment you can always know if they are Asian, Black, or White.

In addition, an interracial marriage between a man and woman is exactly the same as a marriage of any man and woman. It will result in the same ultimate outcome (the potential progeny of the human race). So the bias on that was unjust as it had no basis other than skin color. Gay marriage by definition cannot say the same thing and therefore such an argument for it falls flat.

But really the shame of all this is a word. One word that is causing a problem. And in that quest of one word the ability of people on any side to understand the other becomes akin to crossing a chasm.

Is there a difference between gay marriage and a civil union? No. The function is the same, the ceremony is the same. The meaning and purpose is not the same though. Yet legally, to my knowledge, they are the same.

And if I am incorrect shouldn't all this energy, money, and time be better spent ensuring the equality of a civil union rather than gaining a word? Because if an inequality exists under the law, a new name will not remove that imbalance.

And that is why 30 States have failed to pass a gay marriage law. That is why 68% of the nation is against gay marriage. Not out of a hate of gays, nor a discrimination, but a meaning and an ultimate purpose of that meaning. Jokes, jibes, and smooth talking cannot change that. Not even when pointing at the obvious failure of Britney Spears and Kevin Federline. Even for Jon Stewart.

And before everyone starts screaming about the fundamental right of marriage, let's get this straight. It is a privilege. It is not a right. You have the right to live with whom you wish in this nation. Marriage, or civil unions, are separate of that.

As Huckabee stated

"There is a difference between the equality of each individual and the equality of what we do and the sameness of what we do."

There is nothing wrong with that thought. There is no hidden evil in it. And there is none in a civil union. So before a Liberal bashes me for stating something I believe, on my own blog, in a nation that gives me the right to say such things without retribution, I remind them to think about that quote and the importance of 1 word whose meaning and purpose cannot be attained.

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Mike Huckabee v. Jon Stewart - fiscal policy that's not funny

So I saw an interesting thing the other day on the Jon Stewart . It was a discussion between Stewart and Mike Huckabee. As you might imagine it was confrontational, but not to the degree of say Bill O'Reilly and Rep. Barney Frank.

The crux of the first part of the conversation was on their differences on fiscal conservatism versus liberal policies. Stewart advocates larger Government. By that he means larger influence of Government in the daily affairs of the citizenry. He wants a Government that mandates what cars are made, what profits are allowed and who is lent to. He wants a Government that spends more to provide a mandated healthcare and smaller military.

Huckabee is the opposite of all these things.

But Stewart makes good points in his argument, tinged with sarcasm and humor. Which is great for a parody, but fails to deal with the issues at hand on a more serious level.

Take what Huckabee points out. This Democrat-led Congress failed on every level, and in each Party, to deal with the mortgage crisis which led to the credit crunch. In fact several members of this Congress either lied or have no idea what the hell is going on when they stated the economy was fine. That major financial institutions were secure - which was said at several points in the year - just prior to several major meltdowns. How can we expect a Congress that inept to resolve issues in the stock market, or anywhere for that matter.

And Stewart makes a common misconception as well. He makes the assumption that regulation prevents bad policy. The 2 are not the same.

It was bad policy decisions that made the U.S. auto industry focus on SUV's when hybrid and smaller cars were more logical decisions. Regulation would not change that. And it was the bad regulations, mandating unqualified lenders get home loans, that caused the mortgage crisis in the first place. And bad regulation practices let lead-coated toys into the nation. And it was lack of action by these same oversight groups that failed to prevent or even anticipate the meltdown of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac as examples.

And one thing I want to directly point out that Jon Stewart said.

"Conservatives would say 'I want a big military'. Well that's Government... The fact that you would trust the Government with tanks and nuclear weapons but not to pass out cheese to poor people. You know, you've got to figure, so...I don't get it!"

Get this. In New Orleans the Government with some 15 agencies failed to provide water to people in the Dome for 3 days during Hurricane Katrina. But there has never been a nuclear weapon that has gone off accidentally or been lost. Nor has a tank been lost. The Government has proven in multiple actions that it is quite good at protecting this nation, when allowed to do so, and engaging in war or military actions.

But in terms of helping the citizenry it is far less efficient. Part of the reason why is the fact that the Government is so big concerning domestic issues that its right hand does not know where is or what is being done by the left. Big Government hurts the people, smaller Government does so less.

Liberals seem to want a Government that is involved with all aspects of daily life. They want Government to make decisions for them, or to assist in that decision process. Yet we see that the more Government there is, the less that is done or done efficiently. So why do Liberals expect that a Government-run healthcare system will be more efficient or helpful than FEMA or the VA or the Post Office, as an example.

And that is no joke at all.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

New York State budget problem

So I have been listening to the argument that New York State needs to increase it's taxes to make the budget. It is expected that the State will miss by some $15 billion, and thus something needs to be done.

The current plan will increase taxes on everything from State college tuition to Gatorade. Literally. Expect higher prices for gas, and tax back on clothing under $110 dollars. Costs of Driver's liscences will go up, as will hair cuts, and your cable/satellite tv/radio bill. Internet downloads will also now have a cost, no matter what you download. Higher prices will also be found at the golf courses, parks, and camping areas (so every income level can feel the bite).

But don't fret because with these increased costs there comes increased spending. Yes I said spending. Like $350 million in new student loans (yes I realize that the new 14.5% increase in State tuition costs will absorb some of this) for 45,000 students. Increase welfare payments for 200,000 families. A $1 million dollar anti-obesity program (obviously not more than one television commercial run once across the State at 30 seconds). Increase pay for 1,200 state judges.

Other increases, which sound reasonable will include:

  • Increase funding in programs to prevent lead poisoning in children - $2.5 million
  • Increased funds for food banks, pantries, soup kitchens and shelters
  • Returning military veterans and their families get the government services to which they are entitled - $1.1 million

Obviously there is an imbalance here. There is far more spending than money coming in. And that is before all the new spending. So cuts in spending are needed. Yes, some spending will be cut, imagine that.

Where will the cuts go? Cutting income tax loopholes. Because we all use them to rake over the State, right? And reduced funding for hospitals, clinics and nursing homes. And 3.3 percent cut in school aid spending - roughly $600 million dollars (almost 2x the amount of new loans).

One of the biggest things will be cutting the Empire Zone program in half. You know that program. It's the one where companies get a break for staying in New York State instead of going to a cheaper State like most companies have done in the last decade. So cut that in half and increase corporate taxes, and personal, and increase taxes on all goods. That will keep a company in state and make more people employed.

But there is still a shortfall in this nightmare pipedream. So Gov. Patterson will add video slot machines at Belmont in case anyone who has some money left can lose it there.

This is a bad budget. It's based on a dumb premise. That companies will want to spend the extra money to say they are in New York State. The place already with the highest taxes in the nation. And thus their employees will be able to survive on less money after all these new taxes. And children will get better educations since their school will have less funding, meaning better jobs in the future.


Why don't we cut unessential spending, not create new spending, and maybe lower taxes on a few essential items like gas. Maybe lowering the State sales tax by half a percent. Maybe keeping the internet free. You think that maybe these things might stimulate growth. Maybe get more people spending here than in other states?

Hey here is a big idea. Modify the state no smoking law such that private businesses have the option to be a smoking or non-smoking establishment. With proper signage in the front of the business so patrons know what their choices are. Restaurants and bars might recover some of the 30% loss in revenues they have taken and never recovered when the state law was enacted. Add a drop in the tax on cigarettes so people might not travel to, or buy from people that travel to, other states (NJ, PENN) to buy their cigarettes.

I bet just those simple things will bring in more money than raising the taxes on everything as people lose money to the stock market, increased (it will happen sooner or later) energy costs, and fewer jobs (due to credit crisis or the fact that being in any other state is cheaper).

My ideas definitely can't be worse than what is being proposed now. And I bet no one has checked the benefit of what I just said.

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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Just wait 45 days for President Obama please

In general Presidents have their scandals some time after they have taken the Oath of Office, but I find it odd the number of things being thrown at President Obama before we have even gotten into the new year. I can't recall another President that has ever been faced with so many issues, before day 1.

Part of these problems are issues that come from the departing Administration. President Bush has left a minefield of economic missteps that need to be hurdled on day 1 running. The continuing requests of bailouts from various industries, and Congress' far to eager shoveling of public funds to them adds to that burden. And lest we forget, there are people out in the world that just want to see America burn, regardless of who is at the helm.

But there are a great many other issues that stem directly from President Obama, his Administration selection, and/or his past. Conflicts with Vice President Biden are anticipated, as is head-butting with Secretary of State Clinton. Rahm Emanuel is about as partisan as a skunk smells sweet, and I won't even get into the Mark Rich pardon fiasco.

Bill Ayers is regurgitating his old books that dote on a revised version of history that makes him and other terrorists seem nicer in retrospect. And he is starting to churn out more books to capitalize on the favor he provided President Obama by introducing him to politics in Chicago.

Now Gov. Rod Blagojevich is causing his own stink. So far it does not track back to President Obama, and if he is to be effective at all it must not. It's one thing to have Gov. Blagojevich sell the open Senate seat to the highest bidder, but if Tony Rezco is connected to the shadier dealings the Governor has made in the past, President Obama is sure to be dragged through that mud.

And long-time supporter Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. is about to learn the harshness of the media and Illinois politics under the bright national lights. I believe he may be innocent, as everything revealed so far shows no direct connection. But noting politicians of both Party's these days I wouldn't go to Las Vegas and make a bet on it.

In the past the media at least waited a little while before sniffing at the heels of a President. And it was the media's major help (or lack of investigation if you prefer) that fueled the win President Obama enjoyed. You would think they would give him the same kind of leeway they gave President Clinton and Hillary with Whitewater and the numerous other allegations (women) that dogged his Presidency [at least at first].

President Obama was elected under the banner of change. A change of entrenched politicians that do politics in the old-fashioned way - which has led to an Administration that is comprised of the people he rallied against. A change in the policies that we have followed for some time - to which we have proposals to increase the direct ownership and intervention of Government in private business at unprecedented levels. A change in taxation, leaning on the undefined rich more and bashing the oil industry - none of which will change at all. And most of all a change from a President that is seen as having interests opposed to the public at large - and we have gotten a look to the past and political influences of President Obama that could be far darker than what we have had before.

We have all this, and the Oath of Office is still over a month away. Somebody needs to give the man a little slack. Because he never championed, nor wanted, the media to change the way it attacks the President. He deserves the chance to prove himself, either the dream some believe him to be or the mistake others are stuck with.

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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Ted Turner shows the porgressive path to Bill O'Reilly

So Ted Turner showed up on Bill O'Reilly's show on Fox News. This might be something that you would expect lots of sparks from. But in fact it was quite civil and perhaps a bit mundane.

One of the things I love to hear is the constant call that Fox News is a far-right network. Given that Sean Hannity is far-right, the network and the bulk of the programs are not. And in this instance, as I have often found, Turner barely if ever watches the network he compares to the Nazi's.

It just cements the concept of most liberals/left-wing these days. You can say anything you want, just as long as it agrees with whatever they believe. Everything else is a horrible right-wing conspiracy to remove freedom and thought. Even if they have no clue what any other thought might comprise.

And Turner was honest that his real motivation was the fact that he knew that all the major media focuses to the left (or far-left depending on your level of honesty) and thus anything neutral or to the right would draw attention beyond anything his network or the others could match. Because try as hard as they do, the nation leans right even with massive media bias.

Of course Turner could not avoid his belief that America is an exploitative nation. Funny how he says that, yet he has no problem accumulating his wealth in and from this nation. Or has he been donating the bulk of his wealth to the Government to lower the deficit, save defaulted mortgage owners, and the poor in general? Has he somehow managed to make donations to programs and organizations of size without Forbes or anyone else noticing? In fact the answer, like with most wealthy liberals/progressives - including Warren Buffett and George Soros - is no.

And the best part is the most stupid statement that the educated and experienced Ted Turner makes.

"If we stop bombing people and sent doctors, scientists, and engineers around the world that we make a lot more progress and wouldn't have near as much terrorism in the world as we do." - minute 3:09 - 3:22

That is a stupid statement in every sense of it. First America has nothing to do with bombings in India based on the differences of religion in that nation and Pakistan. We have nothing to do with bombings in France, England, Southeast Asia and nearly 2/3 of the world. And virtually all of these places have been getting bombed for over 3 decades or more. That has nothing to do with us.

Israel is one place that an argument might be made. And of course Iraq and Afghanistan are clearly a result of our actions recently. Not that anyone could say any Middle East nation was peaceful and calm over the last 5 decades let alone the last 10.

But Turner makes a dumb argument because on top of these facts we spend more money on medical and agricultural aid to various nations than many nations make as GDP. Or has he forgotten the Peace Corps and the various debts owed to America from these nations we have helped. And then there is AIDS.

America has done more about AIDS in Africa than most every other nation combined. That is still far from what I think is adequate or within our abilities, but it is far from the implied thought of Turner that we do nothing. And our work in Darfur is horrendous. But that does not erase all the other good work we have done for many nations in Africa. Still we are losing the edge in helping African nations develop better technology to China, but that is a problem of a different sort than what Turner suggests.

Again this is left-wing polispeak to make things sound worse than they are. Like somehow denouncing our actions makes their even lesser actions look better. I've never known anyone to be motivated after hard work for a good cause by being told what they have done was useless and negligible, and then asked to do more.

In part 2 it gets personal. Hanoi Jane Fonda is in the picture. But first we see what "progressives" like Turner calls himself think. Turner admires Fidel Castro. I think there are a lot of people in Florida that would love to have him explain why.

The argument that Turner makes, and I have heard before is that Castro has done good things in his time so he is a good guy. He built hospitals and makes sure people have nationalized healthcare.

So the fact that Cuba is stuck in the 1950's in virtually every aspect doesn't matter to Turner. The fact that the people have no voice in their Government is meaningless. The fact that dissenters are (or at least were) routinely jailed, beaten and/or killed is ok. The fact that their economy is horrendous is all good. Because the people get free healthcare.

So taking that logic, a nation that builds schools, allows free elections, builds hospitals, creates clean water, improves electricity, invigorates an economy and makes the nation stable is a great nation. Wake up "progressives", I just described what America is doing in Iraq.

But I think Turner would stumble on that realization. He, and "progressives" as he described himself, don't want to see America like that. For whatever reason.

Perhaps the best part of this whole interview was when Ted Turner was asked about his inaction after the Viet Nam protests. He with Hanoi Jane protested the actions of America and supported (her moreso to traitorous levels) the North Vietnamese. When America left Viet Nam due to the political pressure, 3 million Vietnamese were slaughtered. And the "progressives" said nothing.

They in fact did what some say America did to Afghanistan after the Russians were defeated. They forgot about the whole thing. They could care less. If they did care they hid it well with their complete and utter silence for decades.

Hanoi Jane, and Ted Turner, had every opportunity to speak out nationally about the atrocities. They could have brought media attention to the situation at any point they desired. Even to this day they could say something. Yet all you will hear is more silence. How "progressive".

Now considering that track record I have to ask a simple question. If we follow the guidance of "progressives" like Turner, and far-left nuts like Hanoi Jane, and leave Iraq as we did Viet Nam, what would they do if things went bad in that nation? Their actions tell us they would turn a blind eye and deaf ear, which is the absolutely best environment for groups like Al Quida to grow in. And that means we would have future attacks on our soil within 5 - 15 years, en masse.

Can America afford to have "progressives" and the far-left say

"You got me. I really didn't think about it." - minute 3:06 - 3:10

as civilians are killed?

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Monday, December 08, 2008

auto bailout lesson - a czar in every industry and a check from Congress

So you want shock and awe? How about the fact that Congress is about to give the major automakers $15 billion more in bailout money. Yeah, what I thought. A yawn.

It's not a surprise to anyone that the auto industry is getting the bailout money. A loan from us to them as Congress likes to put it. And it will be paid back as soon as February. Or so Congress wants to polispeak the spin.

But the real facts are simple. Congress is pulling out any stops on spending money. They are giving money away to basically every big business that walks up to them. I expect that airlines should be next.

So far we have given more than a trillion dollars in this year alone. Forget about the combination of nations that it would take to equal the amount that has been spent. The thing is that none of this is helpful, though Congress keeps saying they think this will do it.

Our money has been poured hand over fist to the financial industry, and we got fewer loans being made, more ownership and intervention from the Government, and a promise that in some far off day we will get paid back. Of course you have not heard a single word on how we will get paid anything back, or what will that money be used for since it won't be in our pockets. But the taxes to pay for it until we do one-day get repaid will come out of our pockets.

And we gave $25 billion to the automakers about a month ago. So the current $15 billion might make it to the end of the month. Then they will ask for more, blaming Congress for being stingy and not helping enough for them to get to do what they need to. But don't fear Congress will appoint a Governmental agent to watch over the auto industry.

I expect that will be someone like Treasury Secretary Paulson, or Fed chairman Bernanke, or maybe like Congressman Barney Frank. And you know all of them were right on the job, wide awake, making sure things couldn't get any worse. Oh damn, we are seriously in the crapper aren't we?

The worst part of this is the fact that a Government agent overseeing private industry, with the ability to mandate changes in their business practices that is solely motivated by politics, is a far cry from capitalism. It is yet another desperate attempt to avoid the pain needed to innovate and become more efficient. Which means it is ultimately a failure of massive proportions that will be passed down the line a bit for someone else to deal with. Hopefully not the politicians in office currently.

For all the bluster, and there were loads of it especially from the financial oversight genius Barney Frank, the fact is this is the worst case scenario and we all knew it was going to happen. From the moment that Congress sat to listen to the auto makers we knew it. The only questions were how much and when. Now we know.

The fact that our politicians lack courage is bad. The fact that they are protecting their political supporters (the UAW as one example) above helping the nation is worse. But the fact that our elected officials have no clue what is going on is the most troubling of all.

So there goes another $15 billion. Compared to the $500 billion+ stimulus plan for 2009, or what has already been spent in 2008 it's not a big deal. Until the snowball of what Congress is doing moves just a bit closer, faster, larger. And then they won't be able to print the money fast enough.

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President-elect Obama has freedom restricted

Recently I saw a headline that I just could not help but stop to read. It stated Obama says he won't be smoking in White House

Why does that matter? Because President Obama is a smoker. Just like millions of other Americans. And it was kept so quiet you would have thought it was a national secret. You would be amazed by the number of people I have spoken to during the Democratic Primaries and since that have no idea President Obama smokes.

Not that it should be a big deal. He is in good health, exercises, eats well and is relatively young. He has been smoking for 20 years now. And it's political ramifications are really meaningless.

Yet it seems to be a big deal somehow. And I feel that is because these days smokers are treated as if they are second-class citizens.

We have all heard the horror story figures and stats that are proclaimed by anti-smoking groups. Some might even know that many of these stats are made up or based on false figures from the Government. That does not make smoking something worth doing, but it makes it far from the plague some would like others to think.

President Obama smoking does not mean the nation will fail to operate properly. He would not be the first, and very likely not the last, President that smokes.

But think about this. The White house is the home of the President. And in his own home, the President is not free to make a decision on how to live his own life. He can have a bowling alley installed, or a movie theater. he could get a pool or virtually anything he wishes in the White House, but he can't have a cigarette without breaking the law.

The President is not free enough to do as he pleases behind his own closed doors. Some in California love that though. Notably those that would ban smoking in your own home, as was attempted earlier this year. But I find it a terrible insult to personal freedom.

Just as smoking has been banned in bars and other public places across the nation, it is banned in the private residence of the symbol of American freedom. That's not a positive statement. Nor is the fact that he has had to hide his smoking from the public.

Smoking is not the healthiest habit. Neither is eating McDonald's every day. But as adults and consumers we have the freedom to make that choice. And nothing should prevent anyone from such a choice in their own home. To do so is tantamount to restricting the television you can see, the movies that are made, the books that can be in a library and so on.

Freedom is only free if it allows choice, not Government mandate. If President Obama chooses to quit smoking it should not be a political mandate, nor based on public polling and political gain. And if he chooses not to quit, he should be free to do that as well. A restriction on his personal freedom, in an act that is legal and enjoyed by tens of millions of Americans, is a restriction on freedom in America.

Health nuts may not like that, but that is their freedom to express that thought. But if we can restrict the symbol of freedom personified in the Office of the President, the act of freedom can be restricted on anyone. It's just a thought you might want to consider.

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Thursday, December 04, 2008

A merry Christmas for whom? U.S. economic outlook by Fred Thompson

So it seems that Fred Thompson and I have been reading the same tea leaves on the economy. You have heard what he has had to say about the current status of the bailouts, the impending 2nd stimulus plan, and President-elect Obama's economic policies for 2009?

If you have not, here are his own words as they can be found at his informative site

Oh I bet the kids are just drooling with anticipation of what will be under the tree. I bet that if you follow the Government's plans it won't be a college tuition.

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Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Rewards and penalties for American politics

Ok, so is it just me or has anyone else noticed the way the Democrats are rewarding each other? President-elect Obama took the Democratic Primaries, and to reward Senator Hillary Clinton for not fighting out the DNC he gave her the Secretary of State position.

In doing so he swallowed all of the comments of former President Bill Clinton - most regarding President Obama as secondary and racially questionable. He has effectively ignored all the attempts of the Clinton campaign to paint him as a Muslim, and drug dealer. And he has taken the most ambitious and willing -to-do-anything political viper into his cabinet.

All Senator Clinton had to do was make a complete political 180-degree turn around on what she had spent months and millions of dollars stating. Not that such actions are unusual for her.

And the public got a Secretary of State that derives part of her income from monies donated to charities she and her husband run, from countries what have dubious at best relations with the U.S. We received a Secretary of State that was willing to have a major fundraiser that was a known fugitive from the law, and tried to keep the money he provided, which was known to be stolen.

President-elect Obama has just rewarded Gov. Richardson with a Secretary of Commerce position. Gov. Richardson was the first to back Obama and run from the Clinton campaign. For such political shrewedness it was expected he would get the State position. But Latinos are not as important as donor money, 18 million supporters, and a backdoor deal (made just after Hillary conceded).

One of the things that has really gone unmentioned is Representative Charles Rangel. He was the key Democrat that push Senator Clinton into conceding the Democratic Primary. He is known as a staunch Clintonite, so his doing so made him a visible example.

Shortly after blasting Hillary (politically) it was found that Representative Rangel had homes in the Dominican Republic that he paid no tax on, that he had several rent-subsidized apartments in new York City though he claims Washington DC as his residence. Add to that the fact he is now also being investigated for receiving $1 million in donations to his Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Service from the CEO of Nabors Industries after he got them a tax break.

Most of his tax and residence issues all existed for years. And not a single person in Congress ever made not of this. The IRS never questioned it. Everyone in politics were completely fine with his actions, until he pissed of Hillary Clinton.

So what are we seeing in the Obama Administration?

Old politics in the embodiment of past figures from the Clinton Administration. Partisan politics in the number and degree of down-the-line Democrat political figures. People (Like Rahm Emanuel and Hillary Clinton) that are known for their spiteful actions to those that oppose their views. People that are willing to accept funds and favors from anyone that can advance their political goals. People that will seemingly say anything, and reverse their publicly stated opinions at the drop of a hat, for political favor.

And we have an Administration that is filled with crossed political agendas. Vice President-elect Biden opposed President-elect Obama on several foreign policy and economic views - which he reportedly believes in and wants to support. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton opposes President Obama on Iraq, the economy, healthcare, and a number of goals that she has sworn repeatedly to uphold for her 18 million voters. And Secretary of Commerce Richardson is not without his disputes and objectives.

This is an Administration that was primarily loyal to the Clinton's, hates any policy that is not left-wing liberal, blindly pro-Democrat, with little to no positive experience with economic issues. Several of the key figures all have opposing and partisan agendas - none of which match the stated goals of President Obama.

The in-fighting that will occur will be unmatched by any Administration I can recall in my lifetime. And we the people will get the rewarding opportunity to watch this all unfold via television and blogs. The only price of admission will be the economy at large and the national debt. Not too big a price some might say.

And for those that oppose any part of this, this Administration has enough venom to kill a African Black Mamba. Just ask Rep. Rangel. Too bad Iran, Al Quida, Indian extremists, Russian expansionists, OPEC, the stock market, NATO and many others could give a damn less about American internal political oneupmanship.

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Tuesday, December 02, 2008

M V Consulting, Inc. Announces Milestone at Black Entertainment USA

New York (PRWEB) December 2, 2008 -- M V Consulting, Inc. announced today the achievement of a major milestone breakthrough within its Black Entertainment USA blog (BEB). The BEB blog, which is focused on entertainment news, sports, movie previews and reviews, television shows, and race relations issues in the media has been in existence for 3 years. In that time it has grown to be in the top .1% of blogs (out of the estimated 100 million+ in the world) with visitors from 125 nations every month.

Black Entertainment USA has now published its 1000th post. This milestone places the entertainment blog alongside some of the largest blogs, many national newspapers, and beyond most magazines in terms of publication rates. In 3 years the blog has gone from an unknown to maintaining readership that exceeds many mid-sized city periodicals.

In achieving 1000 posts, BEB has solidified its position as a leading internet destination for entertainment news commentary. Visitors read about all aspects of entertainment and interact with commentary as only the blogosphere allows. Hundreds have shared their thoughts, confirming the stature of the blog.

Michael Vass, President of M V Consulting, Inc., stated,
"Having crossed the 1000th post threshold at Black Entertainment USA, and nearly clearing 2000 posts when you include our political blog, I must admit my pleasure. The most important thing though has been the input and readership of tens of thousands of visitors each month." Mr. Vass went on to say, "From across the globe, representing every walk of life and growing each month, the visitors to the blogs of the Company make it all worthwhile. And now advertisers are recognizing these achievements. It's a great feeling."

In addition to this major milestone there are several milestones in the other divisions at M V Consulting's sites. These include:

  • 1. Over 600 posts at the political orientated blog - VASS
  • 2. The selection of VASS as 1 of 2 blogs that covered the entire Presidential election cycle for TV One's online website
  • 3. Exponential growth in key demographics of visitors such as 19 - 49 year olds, African Americans and Hispanics/Latinos, the college and post-college educated, and those earning $30,000 - $100,000 and above
  • 4. The continued expansion of the clothing lines featured at the Company's online store
  • 5. Increased visitors to the Company's online store
  • 6. Success in gaining initial advertisers
  • 7. Donations to charitable organizations and events growth
  • 8. The purchase of new office spaces for the Company

Another milestone that has been achieved is the recognition of M V Consulting, Inc. President and primary author Michael Vass in the blogosphere. Mr. Vass has grown from obscurity to writing for the Company's blogs to currently being the primary and/or contributing author at over 100 blogs besides those of the Company.

Additional growth of the Company will be detailed in the annual announcement.

About M V Consulting, Inc. and Michael Vass:
Mr. Michael Vass is a former securities industry account executive of good standing; and currently works as a consultant on the internet and investor relations, and social/political blog writing. He has served in the US Marine Corps Reserves, as well as worked and studied in such diverse fields as entertainment, communications, philosophy and chemistry. He has lived abroad, in Moscow and Tbilisi, as well as in various cities throughout the United States.

Mr. Vass is President of M V Consulting, Inc. a diversified private company that maintains divisions in search engine optimization, an online store, political and entertainment/celebrity blogs, and website/blog maintenence.

It is the combinations of these unique experiences that have led Mr. Vass to the creation of M V Consulting, Inc. The Company owns Black Entertainment USA (, VASS (, a corporate website (, and an online store (

About Black Entertainment USA
The blog focuses on the world of entertainment, celebrities and entertainers from the African American/Hispanic viewpoint of primary author Michael Vass. Trends in movies, commercials, and all other media in regard to race relations is another focal point of the website.

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