Friday, November 23, 2007


If Hillary Clinton's time in the White House as First Lady gives her the experience necessary to supersede the somewhat comparable experiences of Edwards and Obama, what does that say about the possible involvement of Bill Clinton in another Clinton White House?

My Father specifically stated that he will be voting for Clinton with the hope that she will bring the same people and policies of the previous Clinton Administration back.

One would hope that the vast majority of people voting will have the same concern/hope in mind.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Friendly fire...

I am sure everyone has noticed (except the possible exception of CAIR) that the vast majority of Moslems killed in the war on Islam are the result of friendly fire.

At least when we kill our own because of friendly fire, it is almost always, accidental...

What is different...

I have made the argument that the current foreclosure ' crisis' is not that big a deal given the size of our economy. I am not even willing to concede that the 'credit crisis' is in fact something that will cause any significant economic problems.

Earlier in the year, when gas was surpassing $3 a gallon, we waited for the flow of bankruptcies to start. Nothing. Fully absorbed. Practically without a twitch.

Now gas is going back over $3 a gallon, and it's timing is bad. Holiday shopping. No, I don't think $3 gas is going to stop or even slow holiday shopping. Matter of fact, I think we might actually have a good holiday season. My problem is that people are looking at their house, the mortgage, the possible payment increase, the big truck or SUV with a payment of $400 or $500 a month and another $300 a month in gas, and thinking, next year, things are going to be bad. May as well have a good holiday.

Credit card balances are going up. They will continue to go up. Did you know that from the time people start having financial difficulties to the time they file bankruptcy is often 3 years? People will rob Peter to pay Paul for a long time, and if they have decent credit, that can be a couple of years - as long as nothing bad happens like illness, divorce or job loss.

Many people that argue the economy is fine are complaining that those of that point out problems are 'talking the economy down'. To an extent, that is true. Perception is important.

As long as the average person believes THEY will survive this 'crisis', the crisis is non-existent. The economy is going to be dealing with several bad things at one time, and it will have an impact on many people. What will cause the biggest problem is the average person believing THEY are going to be harmed. Such a mindset will do more damage to our economy than any CDO or SIV. Oh, and $3 a gallon pretty personal.

Saturday, November 17, 2007


In a comment I left elsewhere, I pointed out that I have only two real traditions in my life: my birthday plans and Thanksgiving with my parents.

Thanksgiving with my parents has been a tradition only interrupted by my living in California for 9 years and Montana for less than one. Victoria and CJ look forward to it as much as I do. My mother cooks: turkey, beef, ham, corn, green beans, mashed potatoes, stuffing, yams, cranberry sauce, biscuits (usually burned as is our family tradition - unintentionally I might add), and minced meat pie for dessert...with Cool Whip. It usually takes two plates of food to actually sample everything.

But it is not just a time to break bread with my parents. We visit several times a year, Easter, the 4th, Thanksgiving and we try at least one other time. It is a holiday. A rekindling of something that existed when I was a kid and we sat as a family. It is seldom that we are joined by anyone else, but both my sister and brother often stop by sometime during the day or evening. Dinner is early 4ish or so as it always has been. Leftovers and dessert are usually saved for later in the evening. Despite her best effort, Mom usually has more than enough leftovers for the several days of our visit.

I am often reminded of the fact that my parents are still here, and that my relationship with them, strained as it has been on occasion, is as good as any I know between parents and their adult children. Both my parents are in the mid 70's and generally, in good health. My father has had a heart condition that has always been dangerous and it will eventually take him. Still, Thanksgiving is precious time with them and I try not to waste it.

Every visit has an evening or two of discussion of the family and our history. My parents, my Dad especially, often hear things they did not know, or claim to know. Last year we talked about how we as kids knew we had the best parents in the neighborhood, it was obvious and most of the kids in the neighborhood agreed. I have told my father on a couple of occasions that my love of science fiction is directly the result of his taking me to see two movies when I was 10. My love of country is a directly result of the second movie of that double feature. The movies were 2001 and The Green Berets. My love for golf came about because he introduced me to the game and played with me well beyond the point that I could beat him.

My mother loves to read, and she made sure she encouraged my reading growing up. I received dozens of books for Christmas every year. Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys were staples. We also spent a lot of time cooking, and I still love the kitchen, especially with her in it with me.

We each take after one parent more than another. I take after my mother, but there are things that are unique about me that are no doubt from my father. Both of my parents have a wanderlust and a willingness to explore new things. It should be no surprise then to learn I am a first generation American. My parents, both born in Ireland, left their birthplace to raise a family here. They raised American children, not Irish-American children. I do not miss an Irish heritage, I have an American one, one that I am proud of and hope to pass on to our daughter.

My father is an only child. He and my mother attempted to visit Ireland once several years ago by my father's health did not allow it. My mother did get a chance to visit England a while back and saw her sisters for the first time in decades. My father's birthday is November 11th. My youngest sibling, Elizabeth, shares the same birthday. My dad served in the United States Army, part of his process towards becoming a citizen. I served in the Air Force, part of my process towards becoming a citizen. Yes, I was born here, but becoming a citizen is not about birthright, it is about a conscious decision to accept both the rights, and the responsibilities that are part of that title.

On Thanksgiving I am thankful for my parents. For their travel to this country, for raising us American. I am thankful for each time I get to spend with them, and for the time our daughter, their youngest grandchild, gets to spend with them. I am thankful for the example they set: willing to take risks, willing to work hard, willing to dream for their children an impossible dream.

None of their children grew up to be Senators, or CEOs. Only I have completed college, although several others have some college. My brother spent 24 years in the Air Force; his only son serves in Iraq today, his second tour there. We are middle America.

I have immense wealth, opportunities and access to resources incomprehensible to over 5 billion other people on the planet. I have a wonderful partner, an incredible child and the best parents I have ever met.

I may not think about it every day, but on Thanksgiving, I am reminded why we celebrate by sitting down with the two people that made it possible and important, for me, to be thankful.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Might is not right (at least the polls say so...)

Right is right. Having popular opinion either for you or against you is not the determining factor.

Whether Bush was right or wrong to go into Iraq is now beside the point, we have troops there and we need to stay til it is done. If every person outside the military and their families disagreed with Bush, it would be right to stay the course; polls don't matter.

Marriage has two components. There is the religious ritual and the legal union of two people. Religions can limit their blessing to only those acceptable to the religion - two Jews, two Muslims, a man and a woman... But the state controls the legal union and that should not be limited by a religious point of view. The state does not have the right to discriminate. State sanctioned unions are not marriages and marriages are not state sanctioned unions. While there may be considerable overlap, there is no reason to believe one MUST beget the other.

If Elliott Spitzer wants civil unions in NY to be gay-friendly, I think he is right. Claiming the polls oppose such unions does not make the opposition to them right.

Conservatives should stand for what is right, not popular. It is a lesson that conservatives wanted to teach Congress and Bush on immigration, it should be a lesson conservatives learn for themselves on civil unions and marriage.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


The calls for impeachment of the VP have increased in volume (if not in quality) and I think we should have impeachment hearings. As a matter of fact, I DEMAND impeachment hearings.

I think every Republican and conservative should strongly state that we support impeachment hearings. Victoria doesn't like me calling for impeachment because she says that I don't believe the VP (nor the President) has done anything wrong. I demand that if the left wants impeachment they should have to put on a set of hearings to PROVE their claims.

Republicans and conservatives should not be afraid of such a set of hearings. As a matter of fact, I can't think of a single thing Congress should spend its time on that is more important. And if it takes all of next year to get through those hearings, well, time well spent.

Pass it around. Time for impeachment hearings.

A more certain method of insuring Republican control of Congress and the Presidency in 2009 and beyond I can't think of....

UPDATE: Welcome Daily Pundit readers and thanks for the comment Bill...

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Are we in trouble?

Bumped and updated:

Is the economy in trouble? Oil is almost $100 a barrel. Foreclosures are sky high. What is the truth? Here is my opinion:

Go to Starbucks and buy a latte. Pay $3 for 16 oz. That is $24 a gallon for coffee.
Go to the convenience store, buy a bottle of water. Pay $1.49 for a liter. That is $5.60 a gallon.

I drive about 35 miles a day on average, my car gets 26mpg. That is about $4.02 (@2.99/gal) for gas a day. And I don't drink bottled water or lattes.

There are over 118 million households. 68% own their own homes, so 80 million homes. Foreclosure filings do not always result in the loss of a home (50% in this area), figure this is a bad season and 68% lose their homes, 4 mill foreclosures * 68% = 2,720,000 homes lost, or about 3.4%. But those people are not going to be homeless, they will drive up demand for rentals, especially in harder hit areas.

This is not to suggest that high gas prices and foreclosures are not problems. They will create issues in the economy. Higher gas prices will cause fewer miles to be driven and reduce some discretionary spending, but not tons. Foreclosures will cause lower home prices, which will make moving happen less....If my home didn't appreciate in value, I might stay longer in it and add the features I wanted in a new home to my existing home.

Chaos theory in economic systems suggest that while the larger economy continues to chug along, certain segments will occasionally feel pain.

Only a significant act (and 9/11 barely touched the economy) will have an economy wide impact....short of a disaster of BIBLICAL proportions, there is nothing even close....

UPDATE 9am 11/07:
I want to make clear that the implications of chaotic behavior on economic systems does not say that pain will be minor, it can be quite bad, but that in a 7 or 8 TRILLION dollar economy, we need a multiple hundreds of billions of dollars event to even get noticed. In regions, you can have a very bad time without the national economy even noticing. Case in point, I came across this little item this morning: suburbs in Phoenix are getting hammered with foreclosures/forced sales.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Who ME?

When the Pastor of our church called all white people racist, I pulled the plug on giving any serious thought to any future utterings from her mouth. I ended my relationship with her church but continued my relationship with many of the congregation. I am nominally still a member, but we are discussing leaving.

The University of Delaware has made a similar proclamation, that all us White People are racists.

Frankly, I am sick of the demented, pathetic, self-loathing liberals that hoist that crap. I demand that if you are going to point to me and yell racist, that you back up that SLANDER with some evidence.

Can't? Didn't think so. Assholes.