Saturday, December 06, 2008

November 26, 2008
Laura Mszar and Jonna Fitzgerald

ECONOMIC FIX: NO 2008 INCOME TAX, says US Congressman

WASHINGTON, D.C. - On seeing that the Administration is in the process of obligating up to $7.7 trillion between Sec. Paulson and Chairman Bernanke's bailout promises, a U.S. Congressman was shocked. Compare that with the $1.2 trillion that the U.S. Treasury is estimated to receive for the 2008 tax year. That is what one Congressman did and the cheaper, better road to recovery was clear.

"Secretary Paulson continues his unfettered spending spree and is driving our country further from the core capitalist principles on which it was founded. His and the Fed’s bailouts in the past few months have set a dangerous and unmistakable precedent to nationalize or socialize banking, insurance, and investment firms; and now car companies and other industries, states and cities are also lined up with hands out. I am proposing that we end the giveaway power of Sec. Paulson and the Fed immediately and declare that taxpayers will pay no 2008 income taxes. We should then return all amounts individuals have already paid this year," said the concerned Texas Congressman.

"Can you get your head around the idea of each taxpayer receiving back in the next few months every dime they have paid in income taxes for 2008? Can you imagine the incredible surge in the economy - the cars that will be bought, the houses bought and built, the mortgages paid up, the credit cards paid off, and Christmas presents bought? There are great values on some stocks that could then be grabbed by middle class people who otherwise can not take advantage of the deals in the market. The stimulative effects of having to pay NO federal income tax this year would also provide a tax boon to states and cities that desperately need money to repair and build infrastructure and are already seeking bailouts of their own. The federal government has no business picking winners and losers. Let’s let hardworking American taxpayers make that decision."

Rep. Louie Gohmert continued, "Not only would this be a fantastically powerful economic stimulus, it would save trillions of dollars that we simply don't have. You do the math. There are many in and out of Washington who are comfortable with the subliminal message that we are ignorant, helpless minions who need an all-knowing, omniscient Treasury Secretary and Fed Chair to spend all our money for which our grandchildren will one day pay. It doesn't have to be that way! The Treasury Secretary continues to reverse course on what our economy needs to rebound, and the market continues to suffer." 

Congressman Gohmert was also upset to hear disconcerting reports that some of the banks receiving bailout money will not use it to make more loans or shore up "troubled assets." Instead the bailout money will be used to buy their smaller competition, basically using tax dollars to monopolize banking which will also provide fewer sources of credit and loans. This is why direct government intervention on such a massive scale cannot and will not work. Gohmert proposes allowing the people earning the money, the taxpayers, to decide who gets bailed out by buying the products and utilizing the companies that are best meeting their needs. The market will then be able to correct itself and actually work again.

"My idea may sound unconventional, but it is trillions of dollars cheaper than our current course. My proposal actually relies on our nation's founding democratic principles that made us the greatest nation in the world before anyone ever heard of Mr. Henry Paulson!"

Congressman Louie Gohmert represents the First District of Texas in the U.S. House of Representatives. For more information, please contact Laura Mszar at 202.374.3359.
It is Christmas in the heart that puts Christmas in the air.

~W.T. Ellis

Friday, December 05, 2008

Stop Income Tax For Two Months
by Newt Gingrich
Posted 12/04/2008 ET

Rep. Louie Gohmert (R.-Tex.) has proposed a very important tax-cut alternative to the Pelosi-Paulson big-government bailout plan.

Where the Pelosi-Paulson plan takes the taxpayers’ money and puts it under the government’s thumb so that predatory politicians and micromanaging bureaucrats have more and more control over the American economy, Congressman Gohmert’s plan puts the money back into the pockets of the American people and allows them to choose.

In the Pelosi-Obama model, Washington politicians and Washington bureaucrats decide which auto companies to save and with how much money in huge taxpayer-funded checks (bringing with them politician oversight and bureaucratic micromanagement in a manner guaranteed to kill entrepreneurial innovation and market-oriented flexibility).

In the Gohmert model of empowering the American people, you -- not some bureaucrat -- decide which auto companies ought to prosper by your decision about which cars you want to buy. If Washington wants to develop a better energy-environment strategy by having a tax credit for buying electric cars or hybrids or flex fuel cars, that changes the incentives for both customers and manufacturers but keeps the playing field fair and market oriented by letting you decide which product you want to buy.

In this citizen-empowerment model, you the customer pick the winners and losers and you have the power to decide where to spend your money and which innovations fit your values the most.

And there’s more: Under Gohmert’s idea, you don’t have to buy a car. If you need the money for your mortgage, a child’s college tuition or maybe even to save for a rainy day you can do it.

Rep. Gohmert figured out that the volume of money being thrown around by the U.S. Treasury, Congress and the Federal Reserve is so massive that it would finance a tax holiday for every working American.

Think of the scale of spending we are facing.

For the $350 billion second bailout installment Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson is going to request, every American taxpayer could have a two-month tax holiday from both income tax and the Social Security-Medicare (FICA) tax.

That means that for all of January and all of February you would pay no federal income tax and no FICA tax, which -- for most Americans -- amounts to about 33 percent of your gross income.

Furthermore, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has proposed an additional $700 billion as a stimulus package.

That would pay for an additional four months of a tax holiday.

Thus, if you combined the Pelosi and Paulson proposals, you could create a tax holiday through June.

That would mean no working American would pay a penny in income tax or a penny in FICA tax for the first six months of the year.

And that would mean no business would pay a penny in matching FICA tax for the first six months of the year.

As a pro-small business, pro-jobs creation, pro-market stimulation measure, imagine the power of that much extra money in the hands of the American workers and the American entrepreneur.

Imagine how many more people could afford to keep their homes, how many people could pay down some of their debt, how many will be able to rebuild some of their retirement funds, how many people might find the extra resources to start a new business or expand their existing business.

Now that would be a stimulus plan that stimulates the American people. That is quite a change from the big business, big bureaucracy, big politician model we have seen in Washington recently.

Where Pelosi and Paulson would stimulate bureaucrats and politicians, Gohmert would stimulate American workers, American businesses and American productivity.

In the long run, we will get more economic growth and more revenue for federal, state and local governments from a growing economy with more creative businesses, more productive private markets, and more incentivized workers.

The Gohmert plan is a plan to get America growing again. It is not a bailout plan. It is an economic growth plan.

As speaker of the House, I helped balance the federal budget for four consecutive years and to pay off $405 billion in federal debt.

That was the first time since the later 1920s (70 years) that the federal government had four consecutive years of a balanced budget.

We balanced the budget by controlling spending, reforming welfare and trimming bureaucracies while cutting taxes for the first time in 16 years to increase economic growth and therefore increase government revenues from a bigger economy with lower taxes rather than weakening growth by trying to get more revenues through higher taxes in a smaller economy.

As a fiscal conservative committed to balancing the federal budget, I would not normally recommend a tax holiday on this scale.

However, when the alternative is a Pelosi-Paulson spending increase that is Washington-centered, politician-controlled, and bureaucratically micromanaged, the Gohmert plan is a dramatically better approach that will produce far more freedom, much less corruption, and return power and control back to the American worker.

Call your congressman and senators (202-224-3121) and urge them to sign on to the Gohmert plan for economic growth, smaller government, and greater freedom. You can also sign this petition in support of Gohmert's plan.

Mr. Gingrich is the former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives and author of "Winning the Future" (published by Regnery, a HUMAN EVENTS sister company). Click here to get his free Winning the Future e-mail newsletter.


An excellent beginning to the Fair Tax! Let wage earners get used to keeping the money they earned and they'll like the idea so much, they'll want to continue it!
Two to six months of no income tax deductions would be a wonderful start to getting a lot of people on their feet. I'd be willing to bet that some people would be able to get their mortgages back on track so that they could get out from under without going through a foreclosure action.

Personally, I'm not in trouble financially, but such a plan would go far to paying off my credit cards and putting me into an even better position financially. And, if I didn't choose to pay off my credit cards, I could get substantially ahead on my mortgage, or my car loan, or, better yet, do the repairs around my house that I want to make before hurricane season next year. Or, I could put the money into an investment account and put the principle to work for my future retirement.

As I've said before, unless you cash the check and put the cash in a mayonnaise jar and bury in your backyard, the money, no matter how you use it, goes into the economy. Washington is rather upset that the vast majority of the recipients of the last stimulus package didn't spend it on "stuff" and instead used it to pay bills, or buy groceries, or gas for the car.

They don't understand that when you pay a bill, the money is used by the recipient to pay bills or wages to their employees. Or if you just "bank" it, the bank uses that money to loan to your neighbor to buy a car or a home, or to pay college tuition for their high-school graduate.

I like it! This is one bill I can get behind.
Instead of being a time of unusual behavior, Christmas is perhaps the only time in the year when people can obey their natural impulses and express their true sentiments without feeling self-conscious and, perhaps, foolish. Christmas, in short, is about the only chance a man has to be himself.
~Francis C. Farley

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Sen. Mel Martinez of Fla. won't seek re-election
Associated Press
December 3, 2008

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- U.S. Sen. Mel Martinez of Florida, who has struggled to boost public support because of his close ties to President George W. Bush, announced Tuesday he will not seek a second term in 2010, saying he wants to spend more time with his family.

The Republican pushed an immigration reform bill that was unpopular with many in his party, and his seat was widely seen as vulnerable in two years. However, Martinez rejected suggestions he faced difficult re-election prospects in a state won last month by Democrat Barack Obama.

"I've faced much tougher obstacles in my life," Martinez said. "My decision is not based on re-election prospects, but on what I want to do with the next eight years of my life."

Martinez, 62, was elected in 2004 after serving as the U.S. secretary for Housing and Urban Development during the Bush administration. He served as general chairman of the Republican National Committee for 10 months, resigning in October 2007.

Martinez was born in Cuba. At the age of 15, he fled to America as part of a Catholic humanitarian effort called Operation Pedro Pan. Catholic charitable groups provided Martinez, who was alone and spoke virtually no English, a temporary home at two youth facilities. He then lived with two foster families, with whom he remains close. He was reunited with his family in Orlando in 1966.

In appointing Martinez in 2001, Bush said he was "the embodiment of the American Dream," a sentiment he echoed in a statement Tuesday.

Martinez "has been a source of inspiration to people all across our country" by becoming the first Cuban-American cabinet member and U.S. senator, Bush said in the statement.

"In addition, he has been a passionate voice for freedom in his native country," Bush said.

Martinez said during his announcement that he wants to continue to encourage the hopes and dreams of other Hispanics.

"I always tried very much to be a mentor and role model, particularly to young people," Martinez said.

Martinez played a big role in getting Congress to pass a bill attempting to save Terri Schiavo, the brain-damaged woman at the center of a bitter right-to-die battle.

He also worked to protect oil drilling off Florida's coast, helped secure the release of a Florida woman being held prisoner in Vietnam for political activism and added language to a health care bill the Senate passed that would double Medicare fraud penalties.

A Quinnipiac University poll taken last month showed only 36 percent said Martinez should be re-elected, and 38 percent said he wasn't deserving.

Also, as of Sept. 30, Martinez reported only $1.2 million in cash on hand for his possible re-election bid, meaning he would have faced raising millions more to be competitive in Florida's expensive media markets. Earlier this year, Martinez agreed to pay $99,000 in fines for his 2004 campaign's violations of election laws, including accepting more than $313,000 that exceeded legal contribution limits.

Speculation about who would run for Martinez' seat began immediately after his announcement.

Former Gov. Jeb Bush is seriously considering a run and has received e-mails of encouragement from many party and elected officials, according to a former political adviser close to Bush who spoke on condition of anonymity because the former governor is not ready to publicly discuss his plans.

Several Florida congressman also are considered potential candidates, including Democratic Reps. Kendrick Meek and Allen Boyd and Republican Reps. Vern Buchanan, along with about a half dozen other former or current state officials.


Associated Press Writer Brendan Farrington reported from Tallahassee, Fla. Associated Press writers Tamara Lush and Curt Anderson in Miami contributed to this report.


My intention was to forget about politics until sometime after Christmas but I couldn't pass this up. Martinez says he wants to spend more time with his family. That could very well be true. I think it's interesting that "spending more time with the family" seems to be the number 1 reason for not running for re-election among those whose job may be in jeopardy.

I don't care why Martinez is giving up his seat, but I don't think it's because of his ties to Bush. In 2010, Bush will be the distant past and two years into Obama's presidency. More importantly, and I believe more to the point, it will be six years into Martinez' senatorship.

I personally feel that Martinez has been a huge disappointment. My disappointment began, and is lodged in the perception that no one in his office actually read the email that was sent to his office. I sent several emails to his office, both before and after he was elected.

Now, to be honest, I did get actual answers to emails before he was elected. My first email simply asked if Mr-then-campaigning-to-be-Senator Martinez was familiar with the Fair Tax and if so, did he support it or not. I didn't even care why he didn't support it; at that point, I just wanted to know where he stood. I got a response from an underling saying that the candidate wasn't familiar with it. I asked if someone could advise him on the FairTax, then let me know if Martinez was for or against. This person and I corresponded for a few months during the election. I never got an answer to my question, but at least a live person responded.

After he was elected, canned responses became the norm. It wasn't just the Fair Tax; I sent questions on other topics. I finally decided an experiment was in order. I sent an email, got the expected response and forwarded back to his office. And got the same email from him that he sent to my first email, that I sent back to his office.

You see, in order to send the email, you have to specify the topic of the email. The very non-committal response was tailored to that topic, said nothing, and sent automatically.

I finally sent one last email, figuring I knew the response I'd get. I asked my question and advised in the last paragraph that if I got a canned response he could forget about my vote in the next election. Can you guess what happened?

Now, I'm not so full of myself to think that my email swayed his opinion of running again in any way, shape, or form. But, I wonder if he got the message that enough Florida voters were hacked off at Republicans in general that he thought he might have some trouble in 2010.

I don't expect any better from whoever replaces him.

But, I am ever the optimist.


I'll bet Christine Jennings hopes that Vern Buchanan will run for Martinez' seat. She might actually have a chance to get elected in the 13th District.
Obama: Islamic Speech in First 100 Days
Thursday, December 4, 2008 5:14 PM
By: Jim Meyers

Barack Obama is considering making a major foreign policy speech in an Islamic capital during his first 100 days as president in an effort to mend rifts between the U.S. and the Muslim world.

Helene Cooper of The New York Times spoke to several sources, including diplomats, about which Islamic capital Obama might choose, and the consensus was Cairo, Egypt.

The reason: Process of elimination.

A speech in Baghdad would appear to validate the Iraq war, which Obama opposed. A visit to Damascus, the Syrian capital, “would look as if he was rewarding the Syrians and it’s too soon for that,” Ziad Asali, president of the American Task Force on Palestine, told Cooper.

Asali also ruled out:

Ramallah on the West Bank, noting that “Palestinians seek Jerusalem as their capital.”

Tehran in Iran. “Too soon for that.” Amman, Jordan. “Been there, done that.”

Islamabad, Pakistan. “Too dangerous.”

Ankara, Turkey. “Too safe.”

As for Jakarta, Indonesia, where Obama spent part of his youth, “people would yawn about that,” said Asali.

One of Obama’s foreign policy advisers ruled out Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and other capitals around the Persian Gulf.

Cooper concluded: “It’s got to be Cairo. Egypt is perfect. It’s certainly Muslim enough, populous enough and relevant enough. It’s an American ally, but there are enough tensions in the relationship that the choice will feel bold.”

Whatever capital Obama might choose, press reports don’t explain why the new president feels it necessary to give a speech so early in his new administration.

During the presidential campaign Obama indicated U.S. foreign policy was too skewed in favor of Israel and that he would seek to balance that approach in his administration.

He was also dogged with claims that he was a secret Muslim, an accusation he denied.

In fact, Obama had been raised a Muslim and converted to Christianity after meeting the Rev. Jeremiah Wright in his 20s after he moved to Chicago.

Obama was born to a Kenyan father who was a Muslim. His mother divorced this man and later remarried an Indonesian muslim who became Obama’s stepfather.

The couple moved to Indonesia with the young Obama. There he was registered at two schools as a Muslim student.

Earlier this year, Obama spokesman Robert Gibbs claimed: "Senator Obama has never been a Muslim, was not raised a Muslim, and is a committed Christian."

But in his autobiography, "Dreams From My Father," Obama mentions studying the Koran and describes the public school as "a Muslim school." Obama’s campaign web site later removed the claim made by Gibbs that Obama was never a Muslim.

© 2008 Newsmax. All rights reserved
Isn't it funny that at Christmas something in you gets so lonely for - I don't know what exactly, but it's something that you don't mind so much not having at other times.

~Kate L. Bosher

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Never worry about the size of your Christmas tree.
In the eyes of children, they are all 30 feet tall.

~Larry Wilde, The Merry Book of Christmas

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Our hearts grow tender with childhood memories and love of kindred, and we are better throughout the year for having, in spirit, become a child again at Christmas-time.
~Laura Ingalls Wilder

Monday, December 01, 2008

A Christmas gambol oft could cheer
The poor man's heart through half the year.

~Walter Scott
Truck Stop Angels

September 1960, I woke up one morning with six hungry babies and just 75 cents in my pocket. Their father was gone. The boys ranged from three months to seven years; their sister was two. Their Dad had never been much more than a presence they feared. Whenever they heard his tires crunch on the gravel driveway they would scramble to hide under their beds. He did manage to leave 15 dollars a week to buy groceries. Now that he had decided to leave, there would be no more beatings, but no food either.

If there was a welfare system in effect in southern Indiana at that time, I certainly knew nothing about it. I scrubbed the kids until they looked brand new and then put on my best homemade dress. I loaded them into the rusty old 51 Chevy and drove off to find a job. The seven of us went to every factory, store and restaurant in our small town. No luck. The kids stayed, crammed into the car and tried to be quiet while I tried to convince whomever would listen that I was willing to learn or do anything. I had to have a job. Still no luck. The last place we went to, just a few miles out of town, was an old Root Beer Barrel drive-in that had been converted to a truck stop. It was called the Big Wheel.

An old lady named Granny owned the place and she peeked out of the window from time to time at all those kids. She needed someone on the graveyard shift, 11 at night until seven in the morning. She paid 65 cents an hour and I could start that night. I raced home and called the teenager down the street that baby-sat for people. I bargained with her to come and sleep on my sofa for a dollar a night. She could arrive with her pajamas on and the kids would already be asleep. This seemed like a good arrangement to her, so we made a deal. That night when the little ones and I knelt to say our prayers we all thanked God for finding Mommy a job.

And so I started at the Big Wheel. When I got home in the mornings I woke the baby-sitter up and sent her home with one dollar of my tip money-fully half of what I averaged every night. As the weeks went by, heating bills added another strain to my meager wage.

The tires on the old Chevy had the consistency of penny balloons and began to leak. I had to fill them with air on the way to work and again every morning before I could go home. One bleak fall morning, I dragged myself to the car to go home and found four tires in the back seat. New tires! There was no note, no nothing, just those beautiful brand new tires. Had angels taken up residence in Indiana? I wondered.

I made a deal with the owner of the local service station. In exchange for his mounting the new tires, I would clean up his office. I remember it took me a lot longer to scrub his floor than it did for him to do the tires. I was now working six nights instead of five and it still wasn't enough. Christmas was coming and I knew there would be no money for toys for the kids. I found a can of red paint and started repairing and painting some old toys. Then I hid them in the basement so there would be something for Santa to deliver on Christmas morning.

Clothes were a worry too. I was sewing patches on top of patches on the boys pants and soon they would be too far gone to repair. On Christmas Eve the usual customers were drinking coffee in the Big Wheel. These were the truckers, Les, Frank, and Jim, and a state trooper named Joe. A few musicians were hanging around after a gig at the Legion and were dropping nickels in the pinball machine. The regulars all just sat around and talked through the wee hours of the morning and then left to get home before the sun came up.

When it was time for me to go home at seven o'clock on Christmas morning I hurried to the car. I was hoping the kids wouldn't wake up before I managed to get home and get the presents from the basement and place them under the tree (we had cut down a small cedar tree by the side of the road down by the dump).

It was still dark and I couldn't see much, but there appeared to be some dark shadows in the car or was that just a trick of the night? Something certainly looked different, but it was hard to tell what. When I reached the car I peered warily into one of the side windows. Then my jaw dropped in amazement. My old battered Chevy was full - full to the top with boxes of all shapes and sizes.

I quickly opened the driver's side door, scrambled inside and kneeled in the front facing the back seat. Reaching back, I pulled off the lid of the top box. Inside was a whole case of little blue jeans, sizes 2-10! I looked inside another box: It was full of shirts to go with the jeans. Then I peeked inside some of the other boxes: There were candy and nuts and bananas and bags of groceries. There was an enormous ham for baking, and canned vegetables and potatoes. There was pudding and Jell-O and cookies, pie filling and flour.

There was a whole bag of laundry supplies and cleaning items. And there were five toy trucks and one beautiful little doll. As I drove back through empty streets as the sun slowly rose on the most amazing Christmas Day of my life, I was sobbing with gratitude. And I will never forget the joy on the faces of my little ones that precious morning. Yes, there were angels in Indiana that long-ago December. And they all hung out at the Big Wheel truck stop.

I believe in angels! They live next door, around the corner, work in your office, patrol your neighborhood, call you at midnight to hear you laugh and listen to you cry, teach your children, and you see them everyday without even knowing it!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Live your life in such a way......

....that when your feet hit the floor in the morning,
Satan shudders and says......

"Oh, S**t!.... she's awake!!"