Joe on August 5th, 2013

Since the re-election of the President the Tea Party has been on the ropes, reeling from the disbelief that this may have been the first “thrown” election in US history.  This fundamental concern has served to weaken the trust in our government. Revelations about the IRS (domestically the most feared arm of our government), the NSA snooping, and let’s not forget, as many seem to have done, the Benghazi coverup, further corrode the trust of the American People in those governing.

From the discussions I have had with Tea Party members, from all over, the prevailing expression is that they are in disbelief.  Disbelief that the election went the way it did, and that the Republicans on Capitol Hill seem to have converted to the Democratic ticket.  To put it simply, the Tea Party members still seem to be reeling from the loss of the election.  On one hand, you have to consider that everyone put a great amount of energy and emotion into the election, and afterward they just had no energy, and needed to concentrate on making a living under the Obama Administration for the next four years.

Now is the time for us to all pick ourselves up by our bootstraps and get back into the fight.  The coming months will determine the course of the United States for the next twenty years, or more.  The damage the President will do to our freedoms will take a generation to repair.

In the next few months we have the last good opportunity to defund Obamacare.  The Benghazi coverup cannot slip from our view, or it will be the greatest scandal never addressed.  The IRS coercion and harassment of conservative groups during an election cycle will slowly fade from the light, if we allow it.  And, if we do not act swiftly, the NSA will continue unabated in its collection of our phone and Internet records, and will compile an extensive dossier on every citizen.  These are only three of the most prominent issues.

Over the course of the next few months Congress will vote on some life changing issues, and the Tea Party must be there to influence our lawmakers.  Conservatism hangs in the balance, there is no other place on earth where this delicate balance of freedom and restraint favors the people.  It is up to us to preserve freedom and prosperity for our children, and our children’s children.  The option is serfdom, and submission to a tyrannical ruler.

Conservatives from every group need to band together to battle the onslaught of the “progressive” movement.  The Tea Party is the perfect tent for Conservatives to come under.  The infrastructure is there, and good headway has been made to elect a few strong conservatives.  The Tea Party will have to work doubly hard to overcome the pressure that will be placed by the Republican Party.  The past couple of years has served to show us that the Republican Establishment is no better than the Democratic Party’s Progressive movement.  But, it can, and must, be done.  The Tea Party has to regain control of both houses of Congress, and eventually the White House.  The Founding Fathers of our Republic faced no less of a dilemma, and they overcame, as we will.

Joe on April 16th, 2011

We the People must begin working diligently, NOW, to defeat Obama in 2012. Our country depends on it.

Joe on September 3rd, 2010

This year we have a single shot at recovering our Republic, we can get it right or loose everything. The Liberals fully recognize this as well.

This November the ballots will list several conservative candidates, and some look-a-likes. All summer long the Liberals have been infiltrating the Tea Party movement hoping to dilute the conservative message and cause confusion. I have seen several come and go. The Liberals see their opportunity to ruin our Constitutional basis now that the White House has the most liberal, even socialist, President in power. Mr. Obama has proven his reckless disregard for what the American people want and shown how far he is willing to go to deliver his ideologic agenda. These are sobering times for conservatives.

If conservatives are to succeed in this election we must discern the wolves who are being dressed up in the costume of a sheep. We must recognize who is doing the dressing for these wolves and be willing to act with determination to pull our support from the candidates and those who prop them up.

One such case has come to the forefront: Harry Reid and the NRA, yes the NRA. The National Rifle Association has announced that they are not going to endorse Harry Reid (to do so would be far too liberal a move for the mostly conservative association), neither will the NRA endorse Reid’s conservative opponent, Sharon Angle, even though Angle has scored 100% on the NRA pro-gun questionnaire. The NRA has donated close to the legal limit to the Reid campaign and has published a lauding article about Reid in the association’s publication, The American Rifleman.

The NRA has chosen not to endorse either candidate, while propping up the outrageously liberal Harry Reid. Dressing Reid in sheep’s clothing does not make him any more gun-friendly or conservative. The NRA’s actions have revealed a lot about the association’s moral fiber and their ethics when it comes to politics. I recommend you contact the NRA and let them know you do not appreciate their duplicitousness.

This cartoon published by  nationalgunrights.org tells it like it really is:

Cartoon of a NRA and Harry Reid Reality Check

Beware of the wolves in sheep’s clothing.

TEA Party HCR Protest 3-20-10

Tens of thousands protest Health Care Reform Bill the day before the vote, why did Congress not hear their cries

Pelosi and the rest of her socialist ilk pulled it off tonight, they got health care passed. By a vote of 219 to 212 the Democrats defied the clear and unmistakable will of the People of the United States. Since the Scott Brown election it has been obvious to even the blindest of politicians that Americans did not want Obamacare. God only knows what kind of deals were made behind those closed Democrat doors, what kind of appointments were promised to sway the timid Democrats who really did want to get reelected this year. Whatever the deal is, you can bet We the People will pay the price.

We the People need to have some sort of response to these socialist ideologues, who in flagrant disregard to the will of the people, rammed this socialist bill through. From the President to the lowest staffer working in the offices of the Congressmen and Congresswomen who voted for this bill, there needs to be a resounding reply for their willful disregard of the people. Voting in November is too far off and too much damage can be done before then. We need to get these people out of office or somehow tie their hands until November.

Unfortunately, the Republican Party has become ineffective in virtually every respect, they have become the Party of Has Beens. It took an old socialist passing away to break the undaunted run on power in the Congress, Republicans only lucked out that Scott Brown was elected. From now to November the Republicans need to prove their worth to get reelected.

What to do with these socialists? I don’t know. Obvoiusly, it needs to be legal and moral, whatever it is, but something needs to be done. I have already sent an email telling my Congressman not to bother coming home, because he is no longer welcomed. Perhaps sending condolence cards or picketing their office when they return. Surely, at the next town hall meeting your “yes” voting Congressman/woman holds there needs to be a massive protest.

We the People need to have a response. if your Representative voted “yes,” it is on your shoulders to follow through with a stiff rebuke.

The list of who voted what can be found here.

Here is the list of “yes” voters:

Ackerman

Andrews

Baca

Baird

Baldwin

Bean

Becerra

Berkley

Berman

Bishop (GA)

Bishop (NY)

Blumenauer

Boccieri

Boswell

Boyd

Brady (PA)

Braley (IA)

Brown, Corrine

Butterfield

Capps

Capuano

Cardoza

Carnahan

Carney

Carson (IN)

Castor (FL)

Chu

Clarke

Clay

Cleaver

Clyburn

Cohen

Connolly (VA)

Conyers

Cooper

Costa

Costello

Courtney

Crowley

Cuellar

Cummings

Dahlkemper

Davis (CA)

Davis (IL)

DeFazio

DeGette

Delahunt

DeLauro

Dicks

Dingell

Doggett

Donnelly (IN)

Doyle

Driehaus

Edwards (MD)

Ellison

Ellsworth

Engel

Eshoo

Etheridge

Farr

Fattah

Filner

Foster

Frank (MA)

Fudge

Garamendi

Giffords

Gonzalez

Gordon (TN)

Grayson

Green, Al

Green, Gene

Grijalva

Gutierrez

Hall (NY)

Halvorson

Hare

Harman

Hastings (FL)

Heinrich

Higgins

Hill

Himes

Hinchey

Hinojosa

Hirono

Hodes

Holt

Honda

Hoyer

Inslee

Israel

Jackson (IL)

Jackson Lee (TX)

Johnson (GA)

Johnson, E. B.

Kagen

Kanjorski

Kaptur

Kennedy

Kildee

Kilpatrick (MI)

Kilroy

Kind

Kirkpatrick (AZ)

Klein (FL)

Kosmas

Kucinich

Langevin

Larsen (WA)

Larson (CT)

Lee (CA)

Levin

Lewis (GA)

Loebsack

Lofgren, Zoe

Lowey

Luján

Maffei

Maloney

Markey (CO)

Markey (MA)

Matsui

McCarthy (NY)

McCollum

McDermott

McGovern

McNerney

Meek (FL)

Meeks (NY)

Michaud

Miller (NC)

Miller, George

Mitchell

Mollohan

Moore (KS)

Moore (WI)

Moran (VA)

Murphy (CT)

Murphy (NY)

Murphy, Patrick

Nadler (NY)

Napolitano

Neal (MA)

Oberstar

Obey

Olver

Ortiz

Owens

Pallone

Pascrell

Pastor (AZ)

Payne

Pelosi

Perlmutter

Perriello

Peters

Pingree (ME)

Polis (CO)

Pomeroy

Price (NC)

Quigley

Rahall

Rangel

Reyes

Richardson

Rodriguez

Rothman (NJ)

Roybal-Allard

Ruppersberger

Rush

Ryan (OH)

Salazar

Sánchez, Linda T.

Sanchez, Loretta

Sarbanes

Schakowsky

Schauer

Schiff

Schrader

Schwartz

Scott (GA)

Scott (VA)

Serrano

Sestak

Shea-Porter

Sherman

Sires

Slaughter

Smith (WA)

Snyder

Speier

Spratt

Stark

Stupak

Sutton

Thompson (CA)

Thompson (MS)

Tierney

Titus

Tonko

Towns

Tsongas

Van Hollen

Velázquez

Visclosky

Walz

Wasserman Schultz

Waters

Watson

Watt

Waxman

Weiner

Welch

Wilson (OH)

Woolsey

Wu

Yarmuth

Joe on March 18th, 2010

Obamacare Suppository

Joe on March 6th, 2010

This past week President Obama and his Congressional Cronies have been posturing for the big finale, the nuclear option. President Obama has pushed the nuclear launch button, asking Congress to schedule what he continues to label “an up or down vote” on the Health Care Reform (HCR) Bill.

Up or down? How about Democrat or Republican. Just who does Obama think he is fooling? This vote will be accomplished via the process of reconciliation, a process never intended for this sort of legislation. The hoops that have to be jumped through to allow this bill to be voted on by reconciliation are enormous. The smoke and mirrors that will need to be utilized in order to get HCR to fit into reconciliation is mind boggling, just as the Democrats want it to be. President Obama and the Democratic leadership are hoping to confuse the American public so they will not realize the massive shift to socialism they are forcing on the United States. The Democrats realize that this is the only time they will ever have this sort of opportunity to begin the process toward socialized medicine, they will sacrifice their own political lives in order to pass this bill. It is going to take drastic measures to prevent this from happening.

Mr. Obama presents to Americans that he was big hearted enough to allow the Republican lawmakers seven whole hours to discus HCR. What inclusion! King Obama granted an audience to his Republican underlings, for seven grievous hours the liberal messiah allowed his rivals to voice their opposition to his darling HCR. How sickening! How utterly sickening! After the horse is out of the barn Obama allowed Republicans to chase the wild and untamed stallion around in circles for seven hours. Then when the messiah had tired of being so good-willed he slammed the door shut to any real debate declaring that the other side just is not interested in cooperating. In reality, the Republicans committed to pursuing a new bill based on the 70% of common ground, an offer roundly rejected by Mr. Obama.

In all his arrogance the President has slandered the Republicans by saying that they just want to delay reform from reaching Americans, claiming that America just cannot wait. It is the liberals that just do not want to wait, they would miss their chance at socialism. Keep in mind, if it were not for the election of Scott Brown we would have a finished bill already. Obama has further said that the Republicans are more interested in helping the insurance companies than the American people, why then did they offer to build a new bill that would defeat them. In his usual “divide and conquer” mentality Obama is attempting to drive a philosophical wedge between the Republicans and the vast majority of Americans who do not want his bill. Obama, reportedly a Marxist in his college days, is hoping to finally realize the biggest move to Marxism in our lifetimes, in fact, the lifetime of the Republic. This man does not care what he has to do to get this socialist victory. I believe he would knowingly push this country to civil war again if he had to to get this bill passed.

Ignoring the voice of We the People, Americans across this great land, Obama and his liberal friends are poised to go nuclear as soon as possible. If Americans do not protest in the loudest possible means against this bill it will become a harsh reality. Patriots throughout the U.S. need to quickly band together in unison to make their voice deafening to every politician in D.C. today. While we are concentrating our time and effort toward campaigning for conservative newcomers the left hopes to split our attention and dilute our ability to focus on fighting this ominous legislation. We will have to work overtime to accomplish both, and succeed we must.

Today the GOP released a video address by Dr. Parker Griffith (R-AL) who, until December, was a Democrat. Rep. Griffith defected the liberal party because they were determined, in opposition to the will of We the People, to ram HCR through Congress. Mr. Griffith is a medical doctor and knows the pandemonium this bill will cause for health care in the United States.

Dr. Griffith has taken the tremendous step of standing on principle, warning America to come out to fight this monster we face. The biggest opportunity the GOP had to turn the tide on Obama and Pelosi has been missed. The Republicans should have immediately introduced a “new” bill to begin working on after the “Health Care Summit.” After making the clear case that there was 70% of material to agree upon, a new bill would have begun at that point and would have allowed genuine debate and  interaction between the parties to develop a bill America could live with. Sadly, the opportunity, like so many before, was missed and now the Republican Party is playing defense again.

I realize the difficulty the TEA Party movement has with the Republican Party calling the shots, and rightfully so, but this is one case where we need to rally together to defeat this socialist agenda. We the People need to rise up and let Washington know, in no uncertain terms, that there will be hell to pay for allowing this bill to go through the process of reconciliation. Obama has set his course, the Republicans are out, and the progressives are trudging forward to their perceived victory. The only thing that can possibly stand in the way of Obama’s HCR becoming a deadly reality is we the People.

The misinformation campaign is in full swing and the liberals are pulling out all their media and internet magic to persuade the less discerning of American society to get out and fight to get their socialism through Congress. If the conservatives do not fight even harder they will loose this battle, lets face it, we are in a deficit and have to come up from behind to make anywhere near the splash that the libs will. During his campaign  Obama depended on the youth who do not have as great a history and therefore a memory of the dangers of socialism to go out and vote for him. All that was needed was a few nice sounding catch phrases, like “yes we can,” and “change,” or “hope” to package his misinformation propaganda in and the campuses were abuzz. These spiffy sound bites mean absolutely nothing in the realm of reality, as we have all learned since the inauguration. There has been no “change” and there is no “hope of any coming, and “yes we can” has transformed into yes we will, ram this down your throat. The youth of America was duped and they are realizing it, and they do not like having been used in such a terrible way.

The conservatives in this country are going to have to come up with a tremendous movement to defeat this socialist medicine from being implemented. Patriots across the United States will have to rise up, and often, during the process about to unfold and shout louder than ever before if we hope to defeat Obama’s cronies in Congress. They have the numbers and if they are willing to fall on their own swords to get this bill through, they can do it.

Politico has published a list of ten Congressional leaders that would be key to defeating HCR, the article can be found here. For easy reference this is the list in the order they present them:

Pennsylvana Rep. Kathleen Dahlkemper

Indiana Rep. Brad Ellsworth

West Virginia Sen. Robert Byrd

North Carolina Rep. Larry Kissell

New York Rep. Michael Arcuri

Vice president Joe Biden

Washington State Rep. Brian Baird

Arizona Rep. Raul Grijalva

Florida Rep. Allen Boyd

Virginia Dem. Sen. Jim Webb

Vice President Biden is vital in the operation of both houses of Congress and could sway the votes either way, not to mention that he is a bit of a loose cannon and could very well derail Obama’s train if he so chose. If you live any the districts of any of these leaders you may want to work extra hard on them to sway their votes and influence. If you do not live in their districts you can call their offices and apply pressure, they most likely will not receive email or postal mail from any address other than from their home district.

We the People can make a difference, if we get out like our lives depend on it. Indeed, our children’s future does depend on our involvement. Call the White House every day and call your representatives every day until this bill is absolutely dead.

Joe on February 25th, 2010

While we are glued to the “Health Care Reform Summit” today I saw this video from PajamasTV about Obama’s use of his personal logo. The health care debate is pretty much going as we all figured it would. Republicans are getting one minute for every two the Dems are taking. When a Republican finally does get to talk he is cut off by the President and told that is the wrong topic, they don’t want to hear a list of what the public does not like bout the bill. “?” WTH, what the heck, what are they there for?

Barack Obama's Web Background Image

Background image from the BarackObama.com website

Any way, here is a little something to break up the redundancy of the day for you. This video is a serious discussion on the powerful icon that Obama is using. The points are all gems and you may want to view the video several times to let the seriousness of the message sink in. Obama has usurped the historical and meaningful icons of the Presidency. You have heard the saying “words matter,” even more so pictures matter. Icons speak with out uttering a word and leave an indelible impression on the brain.

Please view this video and after doing so leave a comment about what you think of the message. Like so many other things Obama has uprooted and trashed, our sovereignty, our stance as a Christian Nation and subjugating his office to the King of Islam this issue about our Presidential Seal and Obama’s logo is important.

Joe on February 14th, 2010

Glynn Urban, a name you may not have heard before, but a voice you should hear. In Glynn’s “Freedom” the soulful songwriter/singer speaks for America, give it a listen, you will be glad you did.

If you can download “Freedom” at http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/ronmason

Joe on February 12th, 2010

I received an inspiration for this article when I saw this little tidbit on a blog called “Kibitzette” (http://kibitzette.com):

“SHOULD BE ON EVERY BALLOT!!!

A Nevada primary election in 1986:

On the ballot voters voting for Democrat for state treasurer had quite a choice.

Any of five candidates.

List of five candidates – OR – A space marked “None of the above”

“None of the above” FINISHED FIRST!!”

When I saw this story recounted, I did not verify the story because it just exemplifies our situation today. The reason Barack Husein Obama got elected is because there was no place to vote for “None of the Above.” Our political climate in the United States is in a sorry state, in the conservative side of the aisle there just wasn’t a good enough candidate to win the Presidency.

Obama refers to the Republican Party as the “party of no,” wrong as he may be there is some value to those words. The Republican Party is the party of no good candidates and no good platform. The Republican Party no longer represents the conservative grassroots American.

The every-day conservative today is frustrated by the party of no, disappointed by the vacuum of values that has set in at the right side of the aisle. Let down and despondent many people voted for “change,” hoping that there was some truth in the promises of Obama. The McCain/Palin ticket failed to pursue the enemy with vigor and determination. McCain did not loose because he was not competent, he lost because he lost the will to fight. Quiet determination is not appropriate in a presidential campaign, what McCain needed was to listen to the little known jewel he selected for his running mate, Sarah Palin. Palin wanted to go after the fight with the same vigor she approaches sports with, the attitude to win, to fight with everything you have.

Now, don’t think this is a patent endorsement of Sarah Palin, it is not. Palin lacks some qualities I feel are required for a president, needing to write your main ideals on your hand before an interview does not speak to how much these things are burning in her heart. When our president is dealing with world leaders I would hope that he or she does not need to look at the notes on their palm to answer questions in the heat of the negotiations.

What I am looking for is the spirited patriot who has a burning desire to lead this country. I am sick of the teleprompter-addicted speech giver who cannot speak from his belly. If there is a message in your heart you don’t need a script to deliver it. Plain spoken, to the point delivery of simple truths, constitutional and fundamental realities are what our founding fathers campaigned on. Nowadays our politicians run on a platform of giving whatever handout a given group wants to give their vote.

Our country is in poor shape. The liberals have been working to overthrow this republic for a long time, they are focused and well funded. The conservatives who believe in what the Union was built upon are splintered, divided over so many smaller issues. I know these “smaller issues” are not small at all to the individual who feels strongly about them. I do not mean to demean these issues, I just want to point out that we are loosing our republic because we cannot come together to accomplish the greater good. Christians want a Christian president, those in the center want a centrist in office, we are loosing the battle because we are fighting ourselves while the leftist liberals sit back sipping their late.

We need leaders that support a constitutional republic. It is within this framework that all our individual pursuits are able to be realized. If we preserve our freedoms we will have an environment in which to debate and argue our points until we resolve our differences. In order to have a “union” it is necessary to put don some of the lesser things that divide us. Unity does not just happen on its own, it is fought for and struggled over.

As the TEA Party movement goes forth let us all come together in a spirit of unity with the purpose of preserving our Union. Look for issues we can pull together for and agree to disagree if we must over the rest. If, as a nation, we get back to the fundamental basics our forefathers strove for and handed down to our generation we will prevail. To coin a phrase, “Yes We Can.” We can return to American values, state sovereignty, Federal minimization, and individual freedoms. None of the above is not where we need to be, see you at the next TEA Party.

Earmark Pork DiagramSome things never “change,” since President Obama took office we have only gotten more of the old way of doing things in Washington. There is no “change” coming from the man who, on the campaign trail, was all about the new and “transparent” way of lawmaking he was going to demand once elected to our nation’s highest office. Today, earmarks are still the bread and butter for Congressmen (and women), Republican and Democrat, who use the little add-ons to pay back their campaign contributors and keep the home town voter-machine well oiled. Adding an earmark to a larger bill that no one could possibly vote against has long been the way our lawmakers have procured funding for all sorts of things that, if they had to pass a vote on their own merit, would otherwise fail — hands down. In other words, earmarks are used to fund something that other congressional leaders would never accept and the public would be outraged over.

Earmarks may only make up about 14 percent of our national discretionary spending, but with huge portions of our nation unemployed and 401K’s being sucked dry by a plummeting economy $3 Billion here and $4 Billion there adds up fast. The practice of slipping inappropriate funding into bills so they escape the notice of most citizens of the United States is, to be kind, dishonest and despicable. In the FY10 Omnibus spending bill signed by Mr. “no-earmark” Obama this past December earmarks accounted for $3.9 BILLION. The $3.9 BILLION is only the earmarks disclosed by Congress when they passed the bill. Not all these little pieces of “pork” are disclosed, some are laying in the shadows in the text of the bill. The earmarks that do get disclosed often times do not disclose who placed the fat little pork chop on the plate.

The omnibus spending bill for FY10 had enough earmark money to make the average citizen outraged, but, in the separate Defense Appropriations bill for FY10 totaling $636 BILLION was loaded with $4.2 BILLION in earmarks. The following is a list of disclosed earmarks included in the defense appropriations bill:

$800,000 prostate cancer research for minorities
$1.6 million for computerization of hospital records in Oakland, CA
$2.4 million handicap access and a fire sprinkler system at a community club in New York
$3.6 million to eradicate marijuana in Kentucky
$3.9 million energy-efficient solar film for buildings development grant
$5 million San Francisco visitors center
$18 million Edward Kennedy Policy Institute in Massachusetts
$20 million World War II Museum in Louisiana
$23 million indigent health care for Hawaii
$47 million anti-drug training centers throughout the U.S.

These projects have nothing to do with prosecuting two wars or maintaining the readiness of our troops. Not listed above are further additions to the bill for defense spending that the DOD did not ask for and does not want. Lawmakers added $5 BILLION for two destroyers, 10 C-17 cargo planes, and money towards development of a new jet engine that the Pentagon neither wants nor needs.

As far back as October, 2009, government agencies were warning that these earmarks were going to take funds from our troops, reducing the amount of fuel they would have to move around safely and other mission critical items. Those armored vehicles use a lot of fuel, I would hate to begin hearing that our troops are not advancing because they don’t have enough gasoline or diesel to get them to the battle field and back. Our men and women in uniform deserve better. Our nation deserves better. While our president mouths how much he is supporting our troops his actions speak much louder to anyone listening. Obama has been running around the globe coddling Islamic heads of State as if they were to be revered, giving speeches of appeasement to “the Muslim world” (the very ones we are at war with) and now cutting our troops funding off at the ankle, not my idea of meaningful “support.”

As President Obama has stated, the ultimate responsibility for what takes place in our government lies with him, he does have the ability to veto these bills. While Obama can veto a bill it would require some degree of interest on his part to do so. Our President promised a group of Veterans of Foreign Wars in Phoenix that “if Congress sends me a defense bill loaded with that kind of pork, I will veto it.” The veto was forgotten as Obama picked up his pen and signed the bill this past December.

The President has made many promises to cut the pork out of the diet of Congress; to date, he has failed to honor any of these commitments. Not surprising when you consider a comment made by Mr. Obama’s campaign manager during a television interview a month after the inauguration. The interviewer was asking how he justified the numerous campaign promises that had already been broken after only thirty days, when asked if Obama lied during the campaign the answer given was astonishingly honest; he said it was a political campaign and people do not really expect you to tell the truth. Stop! Let that one sink in before continuing.

Oh, and that promise to list online all bills and any earmarks included for the Nation to review before any bill is signed by our president and made law — another campaign lie, and only to have been expected — right?

Our lawmakers are equally to blame for the pork earmarks, this is one area where there is full bipartisan cooperation. Both sides of the aisle are guilty of stuffing these large appropriation bills with pet-project funding. Congress knows all to well that if you want a project funded that would otherwise be impossible to get votes for you include it in a defense appropriations bill, nobody would dare vote down money to keep our troops funded.

It is time for “We the People’ to make a stand and demand that earmarks stop completely. If a bill cannot get support for a “light of day” vote, it should never be proposed. All funding bills should be voted on individually, on their own merit, or not at all. Like addicts addicted to illicit substances our political leaders are not going to stop themselves from using earmarks, it will take intervention from others — We the People.

This November we have an opportunity to put an end to this wild spending in Washington. It is time to begin the Earmark addict’s intervention program. Our country needs honest and reputable citizens, not career politicians, to run for and take office. America was once lead by true patriots who bled and died to give birth to our republic. Once again we need to find the patriots among us to rise up and save our country from the tyrannical form of socialism that is creeping into our system. These should also be people who know what it is like to run a business with limited funding and a balanced budget.

Consider the length of the Constitution of the United States, only four pages — including signatures. Nowadays Congress does not seem to be able to pass a bill with less than 1,000 pages and there is never enough time allotted for all the lawmakers to read them. This has to change as well. We need to get back to down to earth with how we run our country.

American patriots must demand that this president prove his qualifications for holding our most revered office by first providing for public scrutiny a valid and verifiable birth certificate. If he is able to prove his right to citizenship and his natural-born status then we need to demand he honor all his campaign promises to total transparency. All Congressional bills should be posted for several days online for everyone to read before they are signed into law. Earmarks should be vanquished from our land, completely.

Joe on February 5th, 2010
Scene of the signing of the Constitution of the United States

Scene at the signing of the Constitution of the United States

Aesop penned the phrase long ago, but, it is still just as true today as when it was first put to print. “United We Stand, Divided We Fall” contains a lesson for us in this modern setting no less important today than it has been in every conflict over the millennia.

There has been much discussion among TEA Party movement patriots about not allowing anyone to force the movement into another political party. The National Tea Party Convention being held in Nashville this weekend has been the target of some of the meanest denunciations, almost as bad as has been made toward the Obama Administration. There are legitimate claims on both sides of the argument about this convention.
1-800-FLOWERS.COM
We need to be careful of wolves in shepherd’s clothing. The TEA Party movement, a force comprised of patriots who have finally had enough of the bureaucracy that has been stealing our freedoms and our money has but one chance to get it right. If the movement fails to win back the Congress in a substantial way the momentum will likely diminish and the TEA Party groups may dissolve. Allowing the WRONG leadership to band the movement together could be tragic. Unfortunately, we do not have long to maximize the effectiveness of the TEA Parties, November 2 is it. While we do need to be careful, we cannot wait forever for a charismatic “somebody” to rise up from the masses.

Then there is the danger of  the Republican Party trying to corral the TEA Party participants into their organization. The Republican Party is only slightly better than the Democratic Party, both are to blame for getting our nation into the condition we find ourselves in. To let the TEA Party evolve into some kind of right side of the Republican Party would be a disaster and would perpetuate the same-old problems in D.C, not fixing anything.

The dilemma we face is that if we do not unite in some fashion we will not be able to make the impression on the Washington gridlock that our nation needs. United we stand, but, divided we fall. In order for the TEA Party groups to successfully place their candidates into Congress they will have to band together as a unified force, at least on a state wide level or congressional district level. These days it takes more than a district to pay for advertising and fund a good campaign that will win. You can be sure the Democratic Party will be behind their candidates on a national level providing funding where they feel it is needed most. Judging from Obama’s treasure chest during his campaign their funding will be a force to be reckoned with.

The bottom line is this, the TEA Party cannot be successful without unifying under some organizational structure. If the National Tea Party Convention is successful at training people to help organize the movement it may be a good thing. I do not profess to have an answer to just who it is that needs to take center stage in the movement, but, we do not have much time to figure it out. We should all be open to suggestions right about now.

For us to take the White House in 2012 there will have to be a national cohesion for that election. Such a national platform will require that we either reform the Republican Party (not likely to happen in reality) or develop a new party of some sort. For a new party to be formed it will take time to do it properly, but we do not have that luxury. The movement needs leaders now.

Joe on February 4th, 2010

I found this on a Twitter “tweet” from “duchess_rebecca” and thought it was a good representation of what the founding fathers were experiencing when they penned the Declaration of Independence. I also thought of how the frustration level has, once again, reached fever pitch.

I do believe we may just accomplish ousting a good portion of “career politicians” in this next election. And yes, Mr. President and Mrs. Pelozi, it is too late to apologize.

11-2 is our rally point in this year, every event of the TEA Party movement this year should be focused on finding, energizing and electing good, honest citizens to lead this country into the next decade. We must do a better job of getting young, old, middle-aged, people out to vote than the liberals did this past election. If you have a child in college, sit them down and give them a good lesson on civics and the Constitution. Teach the youth about the struggle to free this soil from a burdensome and tyrannical government. We the People can.

Joe on January 28th, 2010

Complete text of the State of the Union Address as provided by the White House:

OBAMA: Madam Speaker, Vice President Biden, members of Congress, distinguished guests, and fellow Americans:

Our Constitution declares that from time to time, the president shall give to Congress information about the state of our union. For 220 years, our leaders have fulfilled this duty. They’ve done so during periods of prosperity and tranquility. And they’ve done so in the midst of war and depression, at moments of great strife and great struggle.

It’s tempting to look back on these moments and assume that our progress was inevitable — that America was always destined to succeed. But when the Union was turned back at Bull Run, and the Allies first landed at Omaha Beach, victory was very much in doubt. When the market crashed on Black Tuesday, and civil rights marchers were beaten on Bloody Sunday, the future was anything but certain. These were the times that tested the courage of our convictions and the strength of our union. And despite all our divisions and disagreements, our hesitations and our fears, America prevailed because we chose to move forward as one nation, as one people.

Again, we are tested. And again, we must answer history’s call.

One year ago, I took office amid two wars, an economy rocked by a severe recession, a financial system on the verge of collapse and a government deeply in debt. Experts from across the political spectrum warned that if we did not act, we might face a second depression. So we acted — immediately and aggressively. And one year later, the worst of the storm has passed.

But the devastation remains. One in 10 Americans still cannot find work. Many businesses have shuttered. Home values have declined. Small towns and rural communities have been hit especially hard. And for those who’d already known poverty, life has become that much harder.

This recession has also compounded the burdens that America’s families have been dealing with for decades — the burden of working harder and longer for less, of being unable to save enough to retire or help kids with college.

So I know the anxieties that are out there right now. They’re not new. These struggles are the reason I ran for president. These struggles are what I’ve witnessed for years in places like Elkhart, Ind., Galesburg, Ill. I hear about them in the letters that I read each night. The toughest to read are those written by children — asking why they have to move from their home, asking when their mom or dad will be able to go back to work.

For these Americans and so many others, change has not come fast enough. Some are frustrated; some are angry. They don’t understand why it seems like bad behavior on Wall Street is rewarded, but hard work on Main Street isn’t; or why Washington has been unable or unwilling to solve any of our problems. They’re tired of the partisanship and the shouting and the pettiness. They know we can’t afford it. Not now.

So we face big and difficult challenges. And what the American people hope — what they deserve — is for all of us, Democrats and Republicans, to work through our differences, to overcome the numbing weight of our politics. For while the people who sent us here have different backgrounds, different stories, different beliefs, the anxieties they face are the same. The aspirations they hold are shared: a job that pays the bills, a chance to get ahead, most of all, the ability to give their children a better life.

You know what else they share? They share a stubborn resilience in the face of adversity. After one of the most difficult years in our history, they remain busy building cars and teaching kids, starting businesses and going back to school. They’re coaching Little League and helping their neighbors. One woman wrote to me and said, ”We are strained but hopeful, struggling but encouraged.”

It’s because of this spirit — this great decency and great strength — that I have never been more hopeful about America’s future than I am tonight. Despite our hardships, our union is strong. We do not give up. We do not quit. We do not allow fear or division to break our spirit. In this new decade, it’s time the American people get a government that matches their decency, that embodies their strength.

And tonight, tonight I’d like to talk about how together we can deliver on that promise.

It begins with our economy.

Our most urgent task upon taking office was to shore up the same banks that helped cause this crisis. It was not easy to do. And if there’s one thing that has unified Democrats and Republicans, and everybody in between, it’s that we all hated the bank bailout. I hated it. I hated it. You hated it. It was about as popular as a root canal.

But when I ran for president, I promised I wouldn’t just do what was popular — I would do what was necessary. And if we had allowed the meltdown of the financial system, unemployment might be double what it is today. More businesses would certainly have closed. More homes would have surely been lost.

So I supported the last administration’s efforts to create the financial rescue program. And when we took that program over, we made it more transparent and more accountable. And as a result, the markets are now stabilized, and we’ve recovered most of the money we spent on the banks. Most but not all.

To recover the rest, I’ve proposed a fee on the biggest banks. Now, I know Wall Street isn’t keen on this idea. But if these firms can afford to hand out big bonuses again, they can afford a modest fee to pay back the taxpayers who rescued them in their time of need.

Now, as we stabilized the financial system, we also took steps to get our economy growing again, save as many jobs as possible and help Americans who had become unemployed.

That’s why we extended or increased unemployment benefits for more than 18 million Americans, made health insurance 65 percent cheaper for families who get their coverage through COBRA and passed 25 different tax cuts.

Now, let me repeat: We cut taxes. We cut taxes for 95 percent of working families. We cut taxes for small businesses. We cut taxes for first-time homebuyers. We cut taxes for parents trying to care for their children. We cut taxes for 8 million Americans paying for college.

I thought I’d get some applause on that one.

As a result, millions of Americans had more to spend on gas and food and other necessities, all of which helped businesses keep more workers. And we haven’t raised income taxes by a single dime on a single person. Not a single dime.

Because of the steps we took, there are about 2 million Americans working right now who would otherwise be unemployed. Two hundred thousand work in construction and clean energy, 300,000 are teachers and other education workers. Tens of thousands are cops, firefighters, correctional officers, first responders. And we’re on track to add another one-and-a-half-million jobs to this total by the end of the year.

The plan that has made all of this possible, from the tax cuts to the jobs, is the Recovery Act. That’s right — the Recovery Act, also known as the stimulus bill. Economists on the left and the right say this bill has helped save jobs and avert disaster. But you don’t have to take their word for it. Talk to the small business in Phoenix that will triple its work force because of the Recovery Act. Talk to the window manufacturer in Philadelphia who said he used to be skeptical about the Recovery Act, until he had to add two more work shifts just because of the business it created. Talk to the single teacher raising two kids who was told by her principal in the last week of school that because of the Recovery Act, she wouldn’t be laid off after all.

There are stories like this all across America. And after two years of recession, the economy is growing again. Retirement funds have started to gain back some of their value. Businesses are beginning to invest again, and slowly some are starting to hire again.

But I realize that for every success story, there are other stories, of men and women who wake up with the anguish of not knowing where their next paycheck will come from, who send out resumes week after week and hear nothing in response. That is why jobs must be our No. 1 focus in 2010, and that’s why I’m calling for a new jobs bill tonight.

Now, the true engine of job creation in this country will always be America’s businesses. But government can create the conditions necessary for businesses to expand and hire more workers.

We should start where most new jobs do — in small businesses, companies that begin when — companies that begin when an entrepreneur — when an entrepreneur takes a chance on a dream, or a worker decides it’s time she became her own boss. Through sheer grit and determination, these companies have weathered the recession, and they’re ready to grow. But when you talk to small business owners in places like Allentown, Pa., or Elyria, Ohio, you find out that even though banks on Wall Street are lending again, they’re mostly lending to bigger companies. Financing remains difficult for small business owners across the country, even those that are making a profit.

So tonight, I’m proposing that we take $30 billion of the money Wall Street banks have repaid and use it to help community banks give small businesses the credit they need to stay afloat. I’m also proposing a new small business tax credit — one that will go to over 1 million small businesses who hire new workers or raise wages. While we’re at it, let’s also eliminate all capital gains taxes on small business investment, and provide a tax incentive for all large businesses and all small businesses to invest in new plants and equipment.

Next, we can put Americans to work today building the infrastructure of tomorrow. From the first railroads to the interstate highway system, our nation has always been built to compete. There’s no reason Europe or China should have the fastest trains, or the new factories that manufacture clean energy products.

Tomorrow, I’ll visit Tampa, Fla., where workers will soon break ground on a new high-speed railroad funded by the Recovery Act. There are projects like that all across this country that will create jobs and help move our nation’s goods, services and information.

We should put more Americans to work building clean energy facilities — and give rebates to Americans who make their homes more energy-efficient, which supports clean energy jobs. And to encourage these and other businesses to stay within our borders, it is time to finally slash the tax breaks for companies that ship our jobs overseas, and give those tax breaks to companies that create jobs right here in the United States of America.

Now, the House has passed a jobs bill that includes some of these steps. As the first order of business this year, I urge the Senate to do the same, and I know they will. They will. People are out of work. They’re hurting. They need our help. And I want a jobs bill on my desk without delay.

But the truth is, these steps won’t make up for the seven million jobs that we’ve lost over the last two years. The only way to move to full employment is to lay a new foundation for long-term economic growth, and finally address the problems that America’s families have confronted for years.

We can’t afford another so-called economic ”expansion” like the one from the last decade — what some call the ”lost decade” — where jobs grew more slowly than during any prior expansion, where the income of the average American household declined while the cost of health care and tuition reached record highs, where prosperity was built on a housing bubble and financial speculation.

From the day I took office, I’ve been told that addressing our larger challenges is too ambitious, such an effort would be too contentious. I’ve been told that our political system is too gridlocked, and that we should just put things on hold for a while.

For those who make these claims, I have one simple question: How long should we wait? How long should America put its future on hold?

You see, Washington has been telling us to wait for decades, even as the problems have grown worse. Meanwhile, China is not waiting to revamp its economy. Germany is not waiting. India is not waiting. These nations — they’re not standing still. These nations aren’t playing for second place. They’re putting more emphasis on math and science. They’re rebuilding their infrastructure. They’re making serious investments in clean energy because they want those jobs. Well, I do not accept second place for the United States of America.

As hard as it may be, as uncomfortable and contentious as the debates may become, it’s time to get serious about fixing the problems that are hampering our growth.

Now, one place to start is serious financial reform. Look, I am not interested in punishing banks. I’m interested in protecting our economy. A strong, healthy financial market makes it possible for businesses to access credit and create new jobs. It channels the savings of families into investments that raise incomes. But that can only happen if we guard against the same recklessness that nearly brought down our entire economy.

We need to make sure consumers and middle-class families have the information they need to make financial decisions. We can’t allow financial institutions, including those that take your deposits, to take risks that threaten the whole economy.

Now, the House has already passed financial reform with many of these changes. And the lobbyists are trying to kill it. But we cannot let them win this fight. And if the bill that ends up on my desk does not meet the test of real reform, I will send it back until we get it right. We’ve got to get it right.

Next, we need to encourage American innovation. Last year, we made the largest investment in basic research funding in history — an investment that could lead to the world’s cheapest solar cells or treatment that kills cancer cells but leaves healthy ones untouched. And no area is more ripe for such innovation than energy. You can see the results of last year’s investments in clean energy — in the North Carolina company that will create 1,200 jobs nationwide helping to make advanced batteries, or in the California business that will put a thousand people to work making solar panels.

But to create more of these clean energy jobs, we need more production, more efficiency, more incentives. And that means building a new generation of safe, clean nuclear power plants in this country. It means making tough decisions about opening new offshore areas for oil and gas development. It means continued investment in advanced biofuels and clean coal technologies. And, yes, it means passing a comprehensive energy and climate bill with incentives that will finally make clean energy the profitable kind of energy in America.

I am grateful to the House for passing such a bill last year. And this year I’m eager to help advance the bipartisan effort in the Senate.

I know there have been questions about whether we can afford such changes in a tough economy. I know that there are those who disagree with the overwhelming scientific evidence on climate change. But here’s the thing — even if you doubt the evidence, providing incentives for energy-efficiency and clean energy are the right thing to do for our future — because the nation that leads the clean energy economy will be the nation that leads the global economy. And America must be that nation.

Third, we need to export more of our goods. Because the more products we make and sell to other countries, the more jobs we support right here in America. So tonight, we set a new goal: We will double our exports over the next five years, an increase that will support 2 million jobs in America. To help meet this goal, we’re launching a national export initiative that will help farmers and small businesses increase their exports, and reform export controls consistent with national security.

We have to seek new markets aggressively, just as our competitors are. If America sits on the sidelines while other nations sign trade deals, we will lose the chance to create jobs on our shores. But realizing those benefits also means enforcing those agreements so our trading partners play by the rules. And that’s why we’ll continue to shape a Doha trade agreement that opens global markets, and why we will strengthen our trade relations in Asia and with key partners like South Korea and Panama and Colombia.

Fourth, we need to invest in the skills and education of our people.

Now, this year, we’ve broken through the stalemate between left and right by launching a national competition to improve our schools. And the idea here is simple: Instead of rewarding failure, we only reward success. Instead of funding the status quo, we only invest in reform — reform that raises student achievement, inspires students to excel in math and science, and turns around failing schools that steal the future of too many young Americans, from rural communities to the inner city. In the 21st century, the best anti-poverty program around is a world-class education. And in this country, the success of our children cannot depend more on where they live than on their potential.

When we renew the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, we will work with Congress to expand these reforms to all 50 states. Still, in this economy, a high school diploma no longer guarantees a good job. That’s why I urge the Senate to follow the House and pass a bill that will revitalize our community colleges, which are a career pathway to the children of so many working families.

To make college more affordable, this bill will finally end the unwarranted taxpayer subsidies that go to banks for student loans. Instead, let’s take that money and give families a $10,000 tax credit for four years of college and increase Pell Grants. And let’s tell another 1 million students that when they graduate, they will be required to pay only 10 percent of their income on student loans, and all of their debt will be forgiven after 20 years — and forgiven after 10 years if they choose a career in public service, because in the United States of America, no one should go broke because they chose to go to college.

And by the way, it’s time for colleges and universities to get serious about cutting their own costs — because they, too, have a responsibility to help solve this problem.

Now, the price of college tuition is just one of the burdens facing the middle class. That’s why last year I asked Vice President Biden to chair a task force on middle-class families. That’s why we’re nearly doubling the child-care tax credit, and making it easier to save for retirement by giving access to every worker a retirement account and expanding the tax credit for those who start a nest egg. That’s why we’re working to lift the value of a family’s single largest investment — their home. The steps we took last year to shore up the housing market have allowed millions of Americans to take out new loans and save an average of $1,500 on mortgage payments.

This year, we will step up refinancing so that homeowners can move into more affordable mortgages. And it is precisely to relieve the burden on middle-class families that we still need health insurance reform. Yes, we do.

Now, let’s clear a few things up. I didn’t choose to tackle this issue to get some legislative victory under my belt. And by now it should be fairly obvious that I didn’t take on health care because it was good politics. I took on health care because of the stories I’ve heard from Americans with pre-existing conditions whose lives depend on getting coverage, patients who’ve been denied coverage, families — even those with insurance — who are just one illness away from financial ruin.

After nearly a century of trying — Democratic administrations, Republican administrations — we are closer than ever to bringing more security to the lives of so many Americans. The approach we’ve taken would protect every American from the worst practices of the insurance industry. It would give small businesses and uninsured Americans a chance to choose an affordable health care plan in a competitive market. It would require every insurance plan to cover preventive care.

And by the way, I want to acknowledge our first lady, Michelle Obama, who this year is creating a national movement to tackle the epidemic of childhood obesity and make kids healthier. Thank you. She gets embarrassed.

Our approach would preserve the right of Americans who have insurance to keep their doctor and their plan. It would reduce costs and premiums for millions of families and businesses. And according to the Congressional Budget Office — the independent organization that both parties have cited as the official scorekeeper for Congress — our approach would bring down the deficit by as much as $1 trillion over the next two decades.

Still, this is a complex issue, and the longer it was debated, the more skeptical people became. I take my share of the blame for not explaining it more clearly to the American people. And I know that with all the lobbying and horse-trading, the process left most Americans wondering, ”What’s in it for me?”

But I also know this problem is not going away. By the time I’m finished speaking tonight, more Americans will have lost their health insurance. Millions will lose it this year. Our deficit will grow. Premiums will go up. Patients will be denied the care they need. Small business owners will continue to drop coverage altogether. I will not walk away from these Americans and neither should the people in this chamber.

So, as temperatures cool, I want everyone to take another look at the plan we’ve proposed. There’s a reason why many doctors, nurses and health care experts who know our system best consider this approach a vast improvement over the status quo. But if anyone from either party has a better approach that will bring down premiums, bring down the deficit, cover the uninsured, strengthen Medicare for seniors and stop insurance company abuses, let me know. Let me know. Let me know. I’m eager to see it.

Here’s what I ask Congress, though: Don’t walk away from reform. Not now. Not when we are so close. Let us find a way to come together and finish the job for the American people. Let’s get it done. Let’s get it done.

Now, even as health care reform would reduce our deficit, it’s not enough to dig us out of a massive fiscal hole in which we find ourselves. It’s a challenge that makes all others that much harder to solve, and one that’s been subject to a lot of political posturing. So let me start the discussion of government spending by setting the record straight.

At the beginning of the last decade, the year 2000, America had a budget surplus of over $200 billion. By the time I took office, we had a one-year deficit of over $1 trillion and projected deficits of $8 trillion over the next decade. Most of this was the result of not paying for two wars, two tax cuts and an expensive prescription drug program. On top of that, the effects of the recession put a $3 trillion hole in our budget. All this was before I walked in the door.

Now — just stating the facts. Now, if we had taken office in ordinary times, I would have liked nothing more than to start bringing down the deficit. But we took office amid a crisis. And our efforts to prevent a second depression have added another $1 trillion to our national debt. That, too, is a fact.

I’m absolutely convinced that was the right thing to do. But families across the country are tightening their belts and making tough decisions. The federal government should do the same. So tonight, I’m proposing specific steps to pay for the trillion dollars that it took to rescue the economy last year.

Starting in 2011, we are prepared to freeze government spending for three years. Spending related to our national security, Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security will not be affected. But all other discretionary government programs will. Like any cash-strapped family, we will work within a budget to invest in what we need and sacrifice what we don’t. And if I have to enforce this discipline by veto, I will.

We will continue to go through the budget, line by line, page by page, to eliminate programs that we can’t afford and don’t work. We’ve already identified $20 billion in savings for next year. To help working families, we’ll extend our middle-class tax cuts. But at a time of record deficits, we will not continue tax cuts for oil companies, for investment fund managers and for those making over $250,000 a year. We just can’t afford it.

Now, even after paying for what we spent on my watch, we’ll still face the massive deficit we had when I took office. More importantly, the cost of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security will continue to skyrocket. That’s why I’ve called for a bipartisan fiscal commission, modeled on a proposal by Republican Judd Gregg and Democrat Kent Conrad. This can’t be one of those Washington gimmicks that lets us pretend we solved a problem. The commission will have to provide a specific set of solutions by a certain deadline.

Now, yesterday, the Senate blocked a bill that would have created this commission. So I’ll issue an executive order that will allow us to go forward, because I refuse to pass this problem on to another generation of Americans. And when the vote comes tomorrow, the Senate should restore the pay-as-you-go law that was a big reason for why we had record surpluses in the 1990s.

Now, I know that some in my own party will argue that we can’t address the deficit or freeze government spending when so many are still hurting. And I agree — which is why this freeze won’t take effect until next year — when the economy is stronger. That’s how budgeting works. But understand — understand if we don’t take meaningful steps to rein in our debt, it could damage our markets, increase the cost of borrowing and jeopardize our recovery — all of which would have an even worse effect on our job growth and family incomes.

From some on the right, I expect we’ll hear a different argument — that if we just make fewer investments in our people, extend tax cuts including those for the wealthier Americans, eliminate more regulations, maintain the status quo on health care, our deficits will go away. The problem is that’s what we did for eight years. That’s what helped us into this crisis. It’s what helped lead to these deficits. We can’t do it again.

Rather than fight the same tired battles that have dominated Washington for decades, it’s time to try something new. Let’s invest in our people without leaving them a mountain of debt. Let’s meet our responsibility to the citizens who sent us here. Let’s try common sense. A novel concept.

To do that, we have to recognize that we face more than a deficit of dollars right now. We face a deficit of trust — deep and corrosive doubts about how Washington works that have been growing for years. To close that credibility gap we have to take action on both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue — to end the outsized influence of lobbyists, to do our work openly, to give our people the government they deserve.

That’s what I came to Washington to do. That’s why — for the first time in history — my administration posts on our White House visitors online. That’s why we’ve excluded lobbyists from policymaking jobs, or seats on federal boards and commissions.

But we can’t stop there. It’s time to require lobbyists to disclose each contact they make on behalf of a client with my administration or with Congress. It’s time to put strict limits on the contributions that lobbyists give to candidates for federal office.

With all due deference to separation of powers, last week the Supreme Court reversed a century of law that I believe will open the floodgates for special interests — including foreign corporations — to spend without limit in our elections. I don’t think American elections should be bankrolled by America’s most powerful interests, or worse, by foreign entities. They should be decided by the American people. And I’d urge Democrats and Republicans to pass a bill that helps to correct some of these problems.

I’m also calling on Congress to continue down the path of earmark reform. Democrats and Republicans. Democrats and Republicans. You’ve trimmed some of this spending, you’ve embraced some meaningful change. But restoring the public trust demands more. For example, some members of Congress post some earmark requests online. Tonight, I’m calling on Congress to publish all earmark requests on a single Web site before there’s a vote, so that the American people can see how their money is being spent.

Of course, none of these reforms will even happen if we don’t also reform how we work with one another. Now, I’m not naive. I never thought that the mere fact of my election would usher in peace and harmony — and some post-partisan era. I knew that both parties have fed divisions that are deeply entrenched. And on some issues, there are simply philosophical differences that will always cause us to part ways. These disagreements, about the role of government in our lives, about our national priorities and our national security, they’ve been taking place for over 200 years. They’re the very essence of our democracy.

But what frustrates the American people is a Washington where every day is Election Day. We can’t wage a perpetual campaign where the only goal is to see who can get the most embarrassing headlines about the other side — a belief that if you lose, I win. Neither party should delay or obstruct every single bill just because they can. The confirmation of — I’m speaking to both parties now. The confirmation of well-qualified public servants shouldn’t be held hostage to the pet projects or grudges of a few individual senators.

Washington may think that saying anything about the other side, no matter how false, no matter how malicious, is just part of the game. But it’s precisely such politics that has stopped either party from helping the American people. Worse yet, it’s sowing further division among our citizens, further distrust in our government.

So, no, I will not give up on trying to change the tone of our politics. I know it’s an election year. And after last week, it’s clear that campaign fever has come even earlier than usual. But we still need to govern.

To Democrats, I would remind you that we still have the largest majority in decades, and the people expect us to solve problems, not run for the hills. And if the Republican leadership is going to insist that 60 votes in the Senate are required to do any business at all in this town — a supermajority — then the responsibility to govern is now yours as well. Just saying no to everything may be good short-term politics, but it’s not leadership. We were sent here to serve our citizens, not our ambitions. So let’s show the American people that we can do it together.

This week, I’ll be addressing a meeting of the House Republicans. I’d like to begin monthly meetings with both Democratic and Republican leadership. I know you can’t wait.

Throughout our history, no issue has united this country more than our security. Sadly, some of the unity we felt after 9/11 has dissipated. We can argue all we want about who’s to blame for this, but I’m not interested in relitigating the past. I know that all of us love this country. All of us are committed to its defense. So let’s put aside the schoolyard taunts about who’s tough. Let’s reject the false choice between protecting our people and upholding our values. Let’s leave behind the fear and division, and do what it takes to defend our nation and forge a more hopeful future — for America and for the world.

That’s the work we began last year. Since the day I took office, we’ve renewed our focus on the terrorists who threaten our nation. We’ve made substantial investments in our homeland security and disrupted plots that threatened to take American lives. We are filling unacceptable gaps revealed by the failed Christmas attack, with better airline security and swifter action on our intelligence. We’ve prohibited torture and strengthened partnerships from the Pacific to South Asia to the Arabian Peninsula. And in the last year, hundreds of al-Qaida’s fighters and affiliates, including many senior leaders, have been captured or killed — far more than in 2008.

And in Afghanistan, we’re increasing our troops and training Afghan security forces so they can begin to take the lead in July of 2011, and our troops can begin to come home. We will reward good governance, work to reduce corruption and support the rights of all Afghans — men and women alike. We’re joined by allies and partners who have increased their own commitments, and who will come together tomorrow in London to reaffirm our common purpose. There will be difficult days ahead. But I am absolutely confident we will succeed.

As we take the fight to al-Qaida, we are responsibly leaving Iraq to its people. As a candidate, I promised that I would end this war, and that is what I am doing as president. We will have all of our combat troops out of Iraq by the end of this August. We will support the Iraqi government — we will support the Iraqi government as they hold elections, and we will continue to partner with the Iraqi people to promote regional peace and prosperity. But make no mistake: This war is ending, and all of our troops are coming home.

Tonight, all of our men and women in uniform — in Iraq, in Afghanistan and around the world — they have to know that we — that they have our respect, our gratitude, our full support. And just as they must have the resources they need in war, we all have a responsibility to support them when they come home. That’s why we made the largest increase in investments for veterans in decades — last year. That’s why we’re building a 21st century VA. And that’s why Michelle has joined with Jill Biden to forge a national commitment to support military families.

Now, even as we prosecute two wars, we’re also confronting perhaps the greatest danger to the American people — the threat of nuclear weapons. I’ve embraced the vision of John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan through a strategy that reverses the spread of these weapons and seeks a world without them. To reduce our stockpiles and launchers, while ensuring our deterrent, the United States and Russia are completing negotiations on the farthest-reaching arms control treaty in nearly two decades. And at April’s nuclear security summit, we will bring 44 nations together here in Washington, D.C., behind a clear goal: securing all vulnerable nuclear materials around the world in four years, so that they never fall into the hands of terrorists.

Now, these diplomatic efforts have also strengthened our hand in dealing with those nations that insist on violating international agreements in pursuit of nuclear weapons. That’s why North Korea now faces increased isolation and stronger sanctions — sanctions that are being vigorously enforced. That’s why the international community is more united, and the Islamic Republic of Iran is more isolated. And as Iran’s leaders continue to ignore their obligations, there should be no doubt: They, too, will face growing consequences. That is a promise.

That’s the leadership that we are providing — engagement that advances the common security and prosperity of all people. We’re working through the G-20 to sustain a lasting global recovery. We’re working with Muslim communities around the world to promote science and education and innovation. We have gone from a bystander to a leader in the fight against climate change. We’re helping developing countries to feed themselves and continuing the fight against HIV/AIDS. And we are launching a new initiative that will give us the capacity to respond faster and more effectively to bioterrorism or an infectious disease — a plan that will counter threats at home and strengthen public health abroad.

As we have for over 60 years, America takes these actions because our destiny is connected to those beyond our shores. But we also do it because it is right. That’s why, as we meet here tonight, over 10,000 Americans are working with many nations to help the people of Haiti recover and rebuild. That’s why we stand with the girl who yearns to go to school in Afghanistan, why we support the human rights of the women marching through the streets of Iran, why we advocate for the young man denied a job by corruption in Guinea. For America must always stand on the side of freedom and human dignity. Always.

Abroad, America’s greatest source of strength has always been our ideals. The same is true at home. We find unity in our incredible diversity, drawing on the promise enshrined in our Constitution: the notion that we’re all created equal, that no matter who you are or what you look like, if you abide by the law you should be protected by it, if you adhere to our common values you should be treated no different than anyone else.

We must continually renew this promise. My administration has a civil rights division that is once again prosecuting civil rights violations and employment discrimination. We finally strengthened our laws to protect against crimes driven by hate. This year, I will work with Congress and our military to finally repeal the law that denies gay Americans the right to serve the country they love because of who they are. It’s the right thing to do.

We’re going to crack down on violations of equal pay laws — so that women get equal pay for an equal day’s work. And we should continue the work of fixing our broken immigration system — to secure our borders and enforce our laws and ensure that everyone who plays by the rules can contribute to our economy and enrich our nation.

In the end, it’s our ideals, our values that built America — values that allowed us to forge a nation made up of immigrants from every corner of the globe, values that drive our citizens still. Every day, Americans meet their responsibilities to their families and their employers. Time and again, they lend a hand to their neighbors and give back to their country. They take pride in their labor and are generous in spirit. These aren’t Republican values or Democratic values that they’re living by, business values or labor values. They’re American values.

Unfortunately, too many of our citizens have lost faith that our biggest institutions — our corporations, our media, and, yes, our government — still reflect these same values. Each of these institutions are full of honorable men and women doing important work that helps our country prosper. But each time a CEO rewards himself for failure, or a banker puts the rest of us at risk for his own selfish gain, people’s doubts grow. Each time lobbyists game the system or politicians tear each other down instead of lifting this country up, we lose faith. The more that TV pundits reduce serious debates to silly arguments, big issues into sound bites, our citizens turn away.

No wonder there’s so much cynicism out there. No wonder there’s so much disappointment.

I campaigned on the promise of change — change we can believe in, the slogan went. And right now, I know there are many Americans who aren’t sure if they still believe we can change — or that I can deliver it.

But remember this — I never suggested that change would be easy, or that I could do it alone. Democracy in a nation of 300 million people can be noisy and messy and complicated. And when you try to do big things and make big changes, it stirs passions and controversy. That’s just how it is.

Those of us in public office can respond to this reality by playing it safe and avoid telling hard truths and pointing fingers. We can do what’s necessary to keep our poll numbers high and get through the next election instead of doing what’s best for the next generation.

But I also know this: If people had made that decision 50 years ago or 100 years ago or 200 years ago, we wouldn’t be here tonight. The only reason we are here is because generations of Americans were unafraid to do what was hard, to do what was needed even when success was uncertain, to do what it took to keep the dream of this nation alive for their children and their grandchildren.

Our administration has had some political setbacks this year and some of them were deserved. But I wake up every day knowing that they are nothing compared to the setbacks that families all across this country have faced this year. And what keeps me going — what keeps me fighting — is that despite all these setbacks, that spirit of determination and optimism, that fundamental decency that has always been at the core of the American people, that lives on.

It lives on in the struggling small business owner who wrote to me of his company, ”None of us,” he said, ”… are willing to consider, even slightly, that we might fail.”

It lives on in the woman who said that even though she and her neighbors have felt the pain of recession, ”We are strong. We are resilient. We are American.”

It lives on in the 8-year-old boy in Louisiana, who just sent me his allowance and asked if I would give it to the people of Haiti.

And it lives on in all the Americans who’ve dropped everything to go someplace they’ve never been and pull people they’ve never known from the rubble, prompting chants of ”USA! USA! USA!” when another life was saved.

The spirit that has sustained this nation for more than two centuries lives on in you, its people. We have finished a difficult year. We have come through a difficult decade. But a new year has come. A new decade stretches before us. We don’t quit. I don’t quit. Let’s seize this moment — to start anew, to carry the dream forward and to strengthen our union once more.

Thank you. God bless you. And God bless the United States of America.

Joe on January 28th, 2010

National unemployment figures soared at an alarming rate during the past year. This map shows the progression on a county by county basis. Sometimes, pictures do speak louder than words.

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Joe on January 27th, 2010

truck

Joe on January 21st, 2010

In the wake of the election where Scott Brown was voted into office on the wings of a national outcry to halt Health Care Reform President Obama seems to have heard the people loud and clear. The question yet to be answered is: Does he get the message? Indications are that the President is pulling back, distancing himself, from the Health Care Reform debate — for now.

Ominous signals are being sent from Washington, Nancy Pelosi came out the day after the Massachusetts special election and proclaimed that Congress does not have the votes to pass the bill in it’s current form. Apparently, Mrs. Pelosi did not get the message from the groundswell surrounding the Massachusetts vote. After such a resounding declaration that the American public is against the Health Care Reform in its current form one would think all parties would step back and announce that there will be a new direction taken henceforth. It seems that Madam Speaker is yet determined to ram some version of the current legislation through no matter what Americans want. We, the people, need to understand that pushing this bill through was still being discussed among Democrats. These liberal Democrats have no concern for what the citizens of this country want.

President Obama has been doing the two-step around the question of what to do next with Health Care Reform in light of the referendum in Massachusetts. In his interview with George Stephanopoulos Wednesday morning Mr. Obama was asked to elaborate on his plans for Health Care Reform and the president, if you listen to what he said, sidestepped the issue and reasserted that he intends to pursue a reform bill very much like its present form. When George asked the President to clarify whether he was advocating that the House just push through the Senate bill Mr. Obama responded: “I think it is very important for the House to make its determinations. I think, right now, they’re feeling obviously unsettled and there were a bunch of provisions in the Senate bill that they didn’t like, and so I can’t force them to do that. Now I will tell you, and I’ve said this before, that the House and the Senate bill overlap about 90 percent.” Obama cannot force the House to push the package through, the two bills overlap 90 percent. Apparently, our President did not get the message from Massachusetts. What the President was saying is, if he could force the House to push the Senate bill through, he would, after all, as he sees it, they overlap 90 percent.

Earlier in the interview Obama said “I would advise that we try to move quickly to coalesce around those elements of the package that people agree on.” As usual, our president is being duplicitous in his dealings with the American people. Mr. Obama has a smooth way of presenting his case and making it sound as if he is on your side, all the while, he fully intends to follow his original plan no matter what the consequences. In the President’s mind, Congress still needs to ram a bill through, without due diligence and bipartisan support. The only difference between Monday and Thursday — is three days.

What the Patriots of America need to realize is that this president is as dangerous with or without his supermajority in Congress. Nancy Pelosi is just a crazed today as she was on Monday, before the Massachusetts election on Tuesday. The socialists in our country have spent many years positioning themselves to be able to overturn our constitution, they do not intend to allow one Republican Senator getting elected to stop them.

Mr. Obama had the audacity to express that his opinion of the American citizenry is that they are simple minded. In trying to explain away the anger and frustration among voters the president said in his interview that people are frustrated because of what had happened “not just because of what’s happened in the last two years, but what’s happened over the last eight years.” He went on to say “from their perspective — the only thing that happens [in Washington] is that we bail out the banks.” We are expected to believe that Americans are frustrated only because of what George Bush did during his terms as president, not because of anything Mr. Obama might have done.To further insult the intelligence of the citizens of this fine country the president stated his opinion that Americans think the only thing that our politicians have done to attempt to revive our economy is to bail out the banks.

Again, our President is not hearing what is being said throughout the country today. Americans realize that there is more going on in Washington than banks getting a handout with no accountability. There has been plenty going on in our halls of Congress and the White House; infrastructure jobs were dolled out to large highway construction companies — with little to no effect on the overall economy; there was much talk about transparency, mostly from behind closed doors; our only ally in he Middle East, Israel, has been treated as a puppet state; a second round of infrastructure construction projects was proposed by the President, since it was realized that the first did little to stimulate our economy; the President has apologized to the whole world for all that the U.S. does, to the point that they are sick of hearing it; we have gone from fighting wars to having “contingency operations,” and the war on terror has faded away all together;  trillions of dollars have been spent with many more being proposed. Yes, there has been a lot going on in Washington, and no, Americans are not angry and frustrated over just one issue, and no matter how much you explain things to conservatives they still think for themselves.

What is obvious after the past two days is that President Obama does hear what America is saying, he simply does not care — he does not get the message. The Democratic Party, with it’s President, is bent on following their socialist agenda and they do not care if we, the people, like it or not. One new Senator is not going to stop the Obama-Pelosi ramrod. Chicago-style arm twisting and back-room dealings will continue to be the “change” we get from Washington. Our best recourse is to vote out enough of the liberal power base and vote in God-fearing constitution-loving Americans. Then it will not matter so much if he gets the message or not, the President will have been contained and the damage he can do to our constitution will be minimized.

Joe on January 20th, 2010

Today we have seen a victory for consevativism with the election in Massachusetts. Not only did Scott Brown win the Senate seat for the great people of his state, but, the seat that was previously a strong support for liberalism is now in the hands of conservatives. We all hope Mr. Brown will be true to his commitments during his campaign to be the vote in our Senate for the people, not for interest groups.

The TEA Party movement must now take advantage of the heightened interest in the political process and in conservativism in general. We can take back our country, if we do not allow the movement to become railroaded by the Republican Party. Conservatives across this great country are waking up to the reality that their very way of life is at stake. The Obama Administration has scared the pants off of most fence-sitters, causing them to stand on the side of the conservative TEA PArty movement. For too long our government has been run by the two party system of Democrats and Republicans. Now is the time to change this, what is needed is a new party, a party of constitutionally based conservatives.

Now is the time to begin defining what this party will look like. We have a few short months remaining until the November elections when Congressional seats will be decided, either liberal or conservative. Democrats will be pouring all their resources to attempt to regain control of Congress, we cannot allow this to happen. Our children’s future depends on this next election. Today is the day to begin to win the November elections.


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Joe on January 19th, 2010

Scott Brown is now Senator Brown, the latest addition to the Republican side of the Senate. Around 9:30 p.m. Martha Coakley called Brown to concede the race. I am sure jaws were dropping in the Obama residence about that same time.

Now the question of how the Democrats will handle this news, will they pass the Senate bill as-is to keep from having to vote on a compromise bill? Mr. Obama originally stated emphatically that he would not accept anything short of a bipartisan health care bill, but, when the bill ran into trouble in the Congress one Republican vote was all that was required to call the bill bipartisan. In the Senate the bill passed had no Republican support, not one vote, Obama did not say he would not accept it because it was not bipartisan. How the scale slides when the resistance mounts.

Now, barring any untimely deaths or defection from the Republican block the health reform bill is as good as dead. Be sure to encourage your Republican Congressional leaders to maintain their health.

Welcome to D.C. Senator Brown.

Joe on January 16th, 2010

About this time it is proper to voice a warning about keeping our guard up in relation to the Obama Administration. The Earthquake in Haiti is nothing short of a national disaster of epic proportions for that poor and underdeveloped nation. The plight of the Haitians is heartbreaking and rightfully so.

The news outlets have been clogged with reports showing the devastation and suffering of the masses in Haiti. With the thirst among Americans for coverage on the Haitian crisis there has been little time for any other news stories. Don’t think for a moment that President Obama is not keenly aware of this fact. Don’t think for that same moment that President Obama will not capitalize on this opportunity wherein the cameras are turned toward Haiti.

Just after the earthquake in Haiti Mr. Obama had a working session on the developing health care bill with congressional leaders — eight hours long. This extremely long meeting, one that should have set off alarm bells across this country, received only a mention to describe where our president was for the day. No discussion was heard about the topics discussed or results coming forth from this meeting or just who was present — and who may not have been invited.

Tomorrow, Sunday, President Obama will spend the day campaigning for the loosing Democratic Senate candidate in the Massachusetts race. With such a daunting humanitarian crisis that, by default on behalf of the Hatian government, has become the responsibility of the United States is it appropriate for our Commander in Chief to be out kissing babies? Will the cameras of the national media pick up on this taxpayer-provided campaign effort, not likely.

The Sunday morning political shows are scheduled to cover the Haitian crisis in detail, not much time will be left to cover our president who will be traveling, along with his expensive security detail, to make a few speeches for a faltering Senate hopeful. We certainly need to watch this administration like a hawk for the next few weeks, until the Haiti crisis looses news appeal. I can’t wait until we discover what is now going on in the White House while our attention as a nation is turned.