Open Forum, Dec. 5 - 11

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Most read stories on Columbian.com last week:

No. 1) Fatal collision between C-Tran bus, pedestrian

No. 2) Boldt balks: Baseball proposal dies at county's hands

No. 3) Police shoot bank robbery suspect near mall

No. 4) Bus accident victim identified

No. 5) Crash causes long I-5 backup into Vancouver

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149 comments

Comments

GOOD MORNING SOUTHWEST CLARK COUNTY!!!!

Don't forget your coats, it's cold out there.

hawkeye — December 5, 2011 at 9:19 a.m. ( | suggest removal


31 F on the shack's back porch (4th plain and Grand vicinity). The frozen leaves, in the street, are quite slick.

Drift — December 5, 2011 at 9:35 a.m. ( | suggest removal


**Strong**if this guy is right, Black Friday was truly black-for all of us.

Aaron Krowne, of the must-read ML-implode.com website, looked closely at the claim that sales were up 30 per cent:

Could the situation possibly be 30 per cent better than last year?

Well, let's go down the checklist of how such massively-increased spending might be possible:

A) consumers have 30 per cent more money?

B) consumers simply borrowed the difference (via credit cards)?

C) consumers simply moved their holiday spending forward to the "Black Friday" weekend and will spend less later?

(A) is most assuredly not the answer. Tax withholding numbers for this year have been anaemic and do not show any meaningful increase. Remember that people are simply not earning more if their withholdings tax payments are not going up; so this data point pretty much precludes an increase in income.

As far as explanation (B), increased use of credit cards, the data we have so far suggests "no". Consumer credit has actually been meaningfully down this year. Now, it could have spiked up massively since the last release of the Fed's consumer debt data, but I doubt this accounts for a majority of the 30 per cent, given the secular trend here.

That leaves (C) - consumers simply moving their spending to the "Black Friday weekend" in a panicked rush to pick up as many deals as possible. By process of elimination, this is most likely. It also makes intuitive sense given the long-run reality of consumers whose wages are decreasing (the withholdings taxes show the overall amount; whereas the median is actually falling) and who are borrowing less on an ongoing basis.

Thus, the massive Black Friday Weekend spending rush is actually more of a negative sign; consumers are more desperate than ever for the deals and will pepper-spray each other in a Walmart to get them.

So there you go: **Another case study of how news is turned inside out, and a big economic story in which millions take part is distorted by superficial reporting intended to encourage more shopping**, with many in our media looking for every silver lining in our economic misery that they can find.

mrd — December 5, 2011 at 9:59 a.m. ( | suggest removal


mrd — December 5, 2011 at 9:59 a.m.

Sounds about right to me. I didn't get a raise this year and I have all my shopping done. Actually, I didn't buy anything on "black" Friday, it was done before that.

And yes, I did purchase at LOCALLY owned shops and stores.

hawkeye — December 5, 2011 at 10:24 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Good morning all, we are still thawing out here in east county. All was white with frost.
mrd-I am with you. I shopped on Black Friday-hit Target for some cleaning supplies. LOL. Obviously not buying into that frenzy, and I shopped in late afternoon. Store was not full. I think people decided to snap up bargains and the rest of the season will be anemic. In my opinion, shopping for unneeded holiday stuff cannot sustain an economy. If stocks rise because media tells we increased sales on one day by 30%, then we are in even worse shape than I thought. Are we that stupid of a nation that we think this can get us out of the slump? And why are we doing this anyway? Nah, don't answer, I know the answer anyway. I said it before: the collective IQ has dropped significantly.

luvithere — December 5, 2011 at 11:08 a.m. ( | suggest removal


I don't look for any economic improvement even though next year is an election year. It seems DC is in a do-no-wrong mode on the economy rather than trying to do something that's right. The folks that control the politicians and the economy are more interested in profits derived from shuffling paper. Now that these big banks, fewer and larger than they were when they were already supposedly "too big to fail", can take excessive risks because the government they own will use taxpayers' money as a backstop (socialize the losses), they have no incentive to do anything to help the economy. High risk=big returns=huge bonuses-all focused on the short term. With nothing going long term to create a growing system, we're screwed.

Now that home values have plummeted, there is no re-fi money available to mask how stagnant the US economy has become. Had anyone one given a rip, ten years ago would have been a good time to address the stagnant economy, but, oh well. Gonna be a long, cold winter for us all.

mrd — December 5, 2011 at 11:54 a.m. ( | suggest removal


summing it up nicely there, mrd. Depressing to think how DC really works and that we are nothing but pawns in their game,

luvithere — December 5, 2011 at 11:59 a.m. ( | suggest removal


MRD,

I think the same NEWS AGENCY produced the news of how the unemployment rate dropped under 9%...Oh thats right 300K folks just quit looking for work so they threw those numbers out.. They said it was closer to 18%..
Here is a link http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/31510813/#45528793
The administration added 120K while 300K just quit looking so they don't count anymore.. I wonder if they are recieving UE benefits still?? Either way the economy still sucks.. Buy local and stay on this side of the bridge...

vanwadreamer — December 5, 2011 at 12:04 p.m. ( | suggest removal


You do not receive UE benefits if you stop looking for a job. They probably also counted those who just simply ran out of benefits in their lower count. Easy to manipulate those numbers when you think about it. And then add in a few of those lowly paid holiday temp jobs-voila. Jobs figures appear better. All a game.

luvithere — December 5, 2011 at 12:11 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Luvithere,

how about those folks who could get a job but it doesn't pay near what they were making or it's about what there getting on UE money?? That to me is like stealing...

vanwadreamer — December 5, 2011 at 12:38 p.m. ( | suggest removal


I see that on 'the latest poll' that the people think that nicknaming Vancouver is wrong. Using the word whippersnapper gives one to believe that it is the older people who said leave it alone. 51% may be older readers who feel that way about our city.

The couv/couve sounds like you're talking about an area of some podunk town not a city with a BIG history in this area of the country.

Hey, I only had to refresh that damn captcha 3 times. Wow, a new record.

JohnCasey — December 5, 2011 at 12:57 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Vanwa-I think cheaters are everywhere. And the vast majority of people on UE are really looking for a job. Let's not assume the worst here. I have not yet met one who does this, but I have met many who are seriously looking for a job.

luvithere — December 5, 2011 at 1:05 p.m. ( | suggest removal


My neighbor found out unemployment compensation ain't what it's cracked up to be about 2 weeks ago. Although he qualified for the max, about $590/week(?), with some new method of determination he receives 2/3 that. A helluva cut in income-if that's the right word. I can't imagine anyone wanting to not work, but preferring 1/2 their usual income.

And I would not-and I doubt if many would-take a burger flipping job when unemployment compensation is higher, doesn't make financial sense. If the big boys can go for the most money with no regards, damn right I would.

With well over half the jobs created in the retail and service sectors, rest assured they were close to the minimum wage. Minimum wage jobs, as long as they are the predominate ones available, will kill any recovery. People scraping by on such jobs don't have the money to spend to heat up a depressed economy. If they have more money to spend drawing unemployment, they're apt to be spending and circulating more money-a good thing.

mrd — December 5, 2011 at 1:53 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Thanks mrd. Well said!!! Seems many jobs available are minimum wage, so I also do not see the point of taking that over UE benefits if they are higher. Are we all supposed to live on minimum wage these days? Race to the bottom not fast enough? I stirred clear of pointing that out earlier as I only answered the cheater question. I was on UE earlier this year, then I made more on contract work and then I decided to get off UE even though I was still entitled. Felt if I made more on a few contracts here and there then in UE benefits all year (at highest level), then I should not draw more benefits. I "cheated" myself out of benefits but felt it was the ethical thing to do. But I did refuse to go for a minimum age job. Not that you actually qualify for one. Employers will not hire you if you are overqualified. Now THAT I can attest to.

luvithere — December 5, 2011 at 2:37 p.m. ( | suggest removal


According to 2010 figures 14 Million dollars were paid out fraudulently to over 7000 people in our state. You are right, cheaters are everywhere, but when were talking about unemployment numbers and such, so many more people could be working but don't for a variety of reasons, Much of it is why take a job for less than what I'm getting on unemployment, like it's just a gift.. same as welfare fraud in our state..I guess listening to a couple people this morning whine over it got me a bit bothered...On top of our president saying what a good job he is doing brining down the dam unemplyment numbers.. I doubt many are giving up the droids and blackberries if you watched them at the UE office...

vanwadreamer — December 5, 2011 at 2:39 p.m. ( | suggest removal


*Much of it is why take a job for less than what I'm getting on unemployment, like it's just a gift.. same as welfare fraud in our state*

How is unemployment a gift? It is paid as a percent of an employer's payroll, based on experience rate for that industry. One has to have worked enough hours and earned enough in wages to get unemployment. The weekly benefit is derived by splitting the amount in one's account over 26 weeks, I think. Does refusing a lower paying job, as compared to unemployment benefits, constitute fraud? I don't know if that's against the rules or not, but as I said before, doing so makes no financial sense at all.

Not that I give a rip-I'm self-employed and can't collect it anyway.

luvithere-How can you draw it? If you do contract work as I do, you can't pay in unless you hire yourself as an employee somehow and pay in to the fund. If you've got a scam going or I'm not aware of something, clue me in. I'm all ears and could use a few extra $$$$.

mrd — December 5, 2011 at 3:49 p.m. ( | suggest removal


mrd-absolutely NO scam going on whatsoever. The opposite actually; was still eligible but did not ask for it. I was an employee for many years. When I became unemployed, I drew benefits. In some weeks, I made money as a contractor and I dutifully reported it, therefore of course NOT receiving any benefits for that week. Then I decided not to go for the next tier of UE as I felt that was not right. So, when I made nothing, I got benefits. When I made some money, I did not. All totally above board, discussed with the UE office, following rules, sending in required paperwork, discussing on phone for many hours. Scamming them is against my ethics, that would be morally wrong. But I can tell all those people who scoff at those of us who drew EU benefits: they were needed to pay the bills. Kept us afloat.

Refusing a lower paying job that pays less than the weekly benefits is actually legal and you can still collect benefits. I never saw UE as a gift, paid for that for many years. As much a gift as Soc Sec in my opinion (NOT).

luvithere — December 5, 2011 at 4:22 p.m. ( | suggest removal


by the way. I just had occasion to be at Cascade Station shopping center. Empty....as suspected, the blitz on Black Friday was just that.

luvithere — December 5, 2011 at 4:30 p.m. ( | suggest removal


karma,

Just read your post from last night - about the All Politics is Local article discussing Mayor Leavitt's committee.

http://www.columbian.com/weblogs/loca...

"Last week, Mayor Tim Leavitt sent an email to the city council, letting them know he's started an advisory group on next year's C-Tran vote on a light rail and bus rapid transit sales tax increase. The group will meet several times before and after the Dec. 9 C-Tran retreat, where this tax is sure to come up. "The group is not intended to be a political action or campaign committee," he wrote, but among the goals would be to "raise (the group's) level of understanding of what the (light rail operations and maintenance) costs are, and what alternatives there may be to funding LRT O&M.;"

That's a great question you asked! Why does the Vancouver Mayor need his own "advisory group" outside the City Council? C-Tran should have this info already, and should be making it available to the County, City, and whoever else might be an interested party.

There may be a good reason for this - it would have been nice if Ms. Damewood had gone there, instead of sidetracking to document the usual bickering between Ms. Stewart and the rest of the council. Frankly, this "smells" like the CRC project on a smaller scale - a few community "important people" types providing input (or direction?) to the ones who are accountable to the voters. And Mayor Leavitt's track record of "No Tolls - oh, wait a minute, I didn't know what I was talking about." makes this all the more suspicious.

It would be nice if The Columbian would pursue this further.

roger — December 5, 2011 at 4:36 p.m. ( | suggest removal


*mrd-absolutely NO scam going on whatsoever*

Bummer, I thought I might get some "free" money.

mrd — December 5, 2011 at 4:43 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Yea sorry. I don't scam, period. Only thing I did is not get money I was entitled to. Drad darn dumb self-imposed ethics and morals-always in the way. Otherwise I would be a wealthy 1%er.

luvithere — December 5, 2011 at 4:49 p.m. ( | suggest removal


luvithere and vandreamer,

Great conversation! I especially liked luvithere's comment "But I did refuse to go for a minimum age job. Not that you actually qualify for one. Employers will not hire you if you are overqualified. Now THAT I can attest to." I know other people who've said the same thing - they were desperate enough, did apply for part time jobs at convenience stores and fast food places, and were told "Sorry, we want someone who isn't going to be looking for another job." The whole idea that people are milking unemployment is an insult to the great majority who have to fall back on this.

roger — December 5, 2011 at 4:49 p.m. ( | suggest removal


For the most part, I only buy groceries on the Washington side of the river. Nearly everything else is from Oregon. For those with a short memory, back in the nineties, when the developers and politicians from Clark county were sleeping together, they were selling S.W. Washington anyway they could. Pollard wanted Vancouver to be bigger and better than Portland and would do anything to lure people over here. One of the biggest selling points, which was advertized, was the short drive to Oregon where there was no sales tax. Therefore, I am only doing what these jerks want me to do. Spend as much out of Clark county as possible, and I don't and never will feel guilty because of it.

cranky — December 5, 2011 at 4:51 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Oh - mrd should have been included in the address to my last post.

roger — December 5, 2011 at 4:51 p.m. ( | suggest removal


did I really type minimum AGE job? LOL. But thanks Roger -I was often quite offended by reading that I was milking the system. That hurts when you rely on UE to pay your mortgage and wonder how long it lasts.
As to fraud in the system-we got that also for Medicare, Soc Sec, and everything else. I find that despicable. We need more investigators to handle that- o wait, we like to get rid of such people (like for food inspectors)as we must, of course, get rid of pesky public workers.

luvithere — December 5, 2011 at 5:16 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Thanks Roger, I just shake my head at that reporter and would like to ask where she took her government class from? It appears that the C reporters don't go out or research any further than the scanner or emails?

Luvithere, when you get my age they look at you really strange if you apply for min wage and are way over qualified. I just love it when the employer states they want a younger worker, heck the last job I had the twenty somethings couldn't keep up and I ended up doing their jobs too.

karma — December 5, 2011 at 5:27 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Hey Karma, yep, they want the young ones. I really enjoyed reading that older workers MUST color their hair, lose weight, get in shape, etc, must hide their age in order to find a job. Stating they want a younger worker of course is discriminatory but they sure do it.

luvithere — December 5, 2011 at 5:52 p.m. ( | suggest removal


the city is considering a 5% increase in water rates at the same time as considering a $585,000 freebie to Frito-Lay? Frito-Lay needs what amounts to about 3% of a construction budget in oreder to expand? Of course, they promise more jobs, but geez, doesn't corporate welfare/greed know any bounds? To think FritoLay, a subsidary of Pepsi, can't come up with $585,000 is ludicrous.

mrd — December 6, 2011 at 7:44 a.m. ( | suggest removal


"The rate increases would also tangentially put money into Vancouver’s ailing general fund. Some of the 20 percent utility tax — collected on gross receipts — goes to the city’s general fund, which pays for police, fire, parks and other general services. City Chief Financial Officer Lloyd Tyler said Monday afternoon he did not have information available on how much the general fund would benefit from the increased revenue."

mrd, the key here is that they are robbing Peter to pay for Paul and putting stuff in the general fund, besides raising property taxes. I totally agree when they are giving out way to many freebies with the promise of we will add to the company and just maybe add more jobs? The Public would faint at all the freebies companies get to keep their companies in that given area. It's just passed onto the backs of the property owners in the line of higher taxes, those that do work there get stuck with the bill?

luvithere, being an older worker sucks!! I have watched some younger workers turn up their noses at the harder work jobs or companies hire the temps to find they move on faster than they can keep them, all the while they loose money due to they can't keep good help. I did many years as a temp and I hate to say it, they are the worst workers in the world. Many of them kept telling me to slow down, why work you tail off??

karma — December 6, 2011 at 8:26 a.m. ( | suggest removal


**Donald Trump, Chuck Todd Clash On MSNBC (VIDEO)**

"I'm not interested in debating you," Todd said. "You have to tell the truth, Chuck!" Trump shot back. The interview continued its downward trend from there.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/05/donald-trump-chuck-todd-msnbc_n_1129368.html

nailingit — December 6, 2011 at 8:50 a.m. ( | suggest removal


**Chris Myers, New Jersey Mayor, Resigns After Alleged Encounter With Male Escort**

The anonymous allegation against Republican Chris Myers, a father of two, included a photo of a man who appeared to be him in his underwear.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/06/chris-myers-medford-new-jersey-escort-sex-scandal_n_1131381.html

nailingit — December 6, 2011 at 8:57 a.m. ( | suggest removal


**Tammy Baldwin Delivers Passionate Defense Of Progressivism**

Baldwin delivered an unapologetic defense of progressivism and its contribution to America.

*"It's not that we've forgotten how to create wealth in this country. It's that we have allowed that wealth to be concentrated in fewer and fewer hands. And as the distance between top and bottom has widened, the bonds between us have stretched -- and broken," she said according to her prepared remarks, which were provided to The Huffington Post. "Progressives want to restore those bonds.*

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/06/tammy-baldwin-wisconsin-senate_n_1130544.html

nailingit — December 6, 2011 at 9:02 a.m. ( | suggest removal



**MSNBC's Scarborough: "Fox News Has Changed The Way Campaigns Are Run On The Republican Side"**

http://mediamatters.org/mmtv/201112060003?frontpage

nailingit — December 6, 2011 at 9:44 a.m. ( | suggest removal


This short story is exactly what Christmas is about, what giving from the heart is about, what caring for mankind more than yourself is about..

http://www.columbian.com/news/2011/de...

What have YOU done...

ELISI — December 6, 2011 at 10:49 a.m. ( | suggest removal


THE MARSHALL CENTER does NOT GIVE DISCOUNTS to Veterans and some disabled..? - VANCOUVER Yer City is FILLED with Veterans and disabled... The Lady on the phone says " DUE TO BUDGET CUTS " - OK Then I Say DO NOT JOIN THE MARSHAL CENTER or the Van Clark Parks.org--

KarmaRadioNetwork — December 6, 2011 at 10:54 a.m. ( | suggest removal


KRN, my health care is provided for through the V.A. My home loan was V.A. When I was first separated from the military I started school at the community college, with help from the V.A.

Those benefits were all part and parcel of the contract I signed with the navy.

I don't recall signing a contract with a park's department.

Oh, AND I'm disabled, too. Is there a contract somewhere I can sign for that?

Your use of capitalization is interesting.

Drift — December 6, 2011 at 11:47 a.m. ( | suggest removal


So, a few days ago I wrote a letter to Senator Murray. It was prompted by an article in the C dated Dec. 1, _Senators tell VA to speed up...._. It had to do with psychiatric assistance, suicide rates, etc.

Now, I know Patty has been a hard-charger for vets. I laud her for her efforts. But something...

See, I also know she's anti-cannabis -- medicinal or otherwise. I'm also aware of anecdotal evidence and lab studies that indicate phytocannabinoids (or synthetic analogs) show promise in the treatment of PTSD.

That seems conflicted to me. She helps out the vets, but if hitting a joint would prevent one from sucking the muzzle of a weapon, well...

I dropped her a line asking how *she* resolved that conflict.

The response I received was canned.

She didn't come close to resolving my question. The cut and paste email I recieved didn't have the word cannabis, phytocannabinoid or, even, marijuana anywhere within it. It simply extrolled her efforts on behalf of veterans.

I'm not bummed.

To be bummed about receiving a canned letter from a Senator...I mean, what? I think I'm special?!

http://capndrift.wordpress.com/

Drift — December 6, 2011 at 1:38 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Drift,

DITTO on both posts..... Nice to see common sense once in a while..

vanwadreamer — December 6, 2011 at 2:38 p.m. ( | suggest removal


***Why the hell can't we work together?***

On private call, Republicans say attacking Obama personally is too dangerous: Yahoo News exclusive

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/yahoo-exclusive-republicans-disclose-private-call-too-dangerous-175828684.html

hawkeye — December 6, 2011 at 2:55 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Anyone hear of a man named Foster Gamble? Think Proctor and.
He is an heir to this fortune and a member of the elite 1 percent who is rallying against his own kind.

When I was in NYC last week, someone gave me a copy of his new movie called, "Thrive." Fascinating stuff.

I would love to hear what some of you think of his ideas. You can find some short video clips on YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ydzL3p...

His website is: www.thrivemovement.com

manthou — December 6, 2011 at 8:36 p.m. ( | suggest removal


What have you guys done with the Nail?* I've been looking forward to a friendly dope debate ;^)
Drift — December 4, 2011 at 11:35 a.m. ( permalink | suggest removal | Ignore User l chillify )

*There were several of them. Their eyes were dark, cold...empty. I know they are coming again.

I checked out your blog and I think I signed in. Always up for debating, or is it the other way around? :)

nailingit — December 6, 2011 at 8:36 p.m. ( | suggest removal


**Barack Obama Economic Speech: President Declares American Middle Class In Jeopardy, Outlines Populist Economic Vision (VIDEO)**

In small-town Osawatomie, in a high school gym where patriotic bunting lined the bleachers, Obama presented himself as the one fighting for shared sacrifice and success against those who would gut government and let people fend for themselves. He did so knowing the nation is riven over the question of whether economic opportunity for all is evaporating.

"Throughout the country, it's sparked protests and political movements, from the tea party to the people who've been occupying the streets of New York and other cities," Obama said.

"This is the defining issue of our time," he said in echoing President Theodore Roosevelt's famous speech here in 1910.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/06/barack-obama-payroll-tax-cuts_n_1132050.html

nailingit — December 6, 2011 at 8:48 p.m. ( | suggest removal


nailingit: Looky see again: we posted at the exact same time above. I hear the Twilight Zone theme song hauntingly in the distance........

manthou — December 6, 2011 at 8:49 p.m. ( | suggest removal


I loved the President's speech today. I loved Hillary's even better.

Maybe it was the change of scenery. Maybe it was hanging out with passionate advocates. Maybe it was the food and water, but hey, I am feeling hopey and changey again.

If it only lasts one more minute, I will take it.

manthou — December 6, 2011 at 8:52 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Welcome back manthou...our 8:36 posts are eerily timed! Thanks for updating us a few days ago. Did you stay out of jail?

nailingit — December 6, 2011 at 8:52 p.m. ( | suggest removal


AAAAAHHHH!

nailingit — December 6, 2011 at 8:53 p.m. ( | suggest removal


It happened again! The Presidents speech was great. I would love to hear something concrete.

nailingit — December 6, 2011 at 8:54 p.m. ( | suggest removal


I stayed out of jail and out of trouble, nailingit. But I have to say, this Foster Gamble movie has me fascinated. I watched it there and took home a copy.

Here are his ideas for the top 10 things we need to do to see real change:

1.Get Informed, Speak Up & Connect with Others
2.Bank Locally
3.Buy and Invest Responsibly
4.Join the Movement to Audit and End the Federal Reserve
5.Keep the Internet Fair & Open
6.Support Independent Media
7.Support Organic, Non-GMO Farming
8.Require Election & Campaign Finance Reform
9.Advocate for Renewable and "Free" Energy
10.Take Part in Critical Mass Actions

manthou — December 6, 2011 at 9:06 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Obama's speech was a beauty, I'm sure. He's very intelligent and articulate. I did't watch it, but read a report on it.

It seems he's now wanting to tax the rich more, shortly after the Bush cuts became his own. Must've seen some poll numbers and done a 180? For all his ranting at Wall St and Wall St execs, what has changed? Damn little if anything, it seems to be business as usual-if not worse. He's looking like a toothless tiger to me.

The R's with their Nordquist pledge (I pledge allegiance to the lobbyists, their money, and my party) and control of the House insure any such tax increases are unlikely, even with Obama screaming all the way from the White House.

The R's will fight increases in taxes-it's an election year-and any improvement in the deficit or economy between now and the election would aid Obama's re-election, and the R's would MUCH rather see more economic misery for us all than 4 more years of Obama, as they're on the record saying removing him is job #1.

mrd — December 7, 2011 at 7:48 a.m. ( | suggest removal


manthou- I watched the intro to 'Thrive' and looks intriguing! Definitely will check it out. It appears you were right with previous supposition regarding tainted energy. :(

nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 8:27 a.m. ( | suggest removal


**House Republicans Pushing Bill To Shift Regulation Authority To Congress**

WASHINGTON -- Congress would gain major new power over government regulations under legislation set for approval by the Republican-run House.

Republicans say the major shift in power, from unelected regulators to elected lawmakers, is needed to kill the most costly regulations – with an economic impact of more than $100 million. Republicans call those rules job killers.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/07/house-gop-regulation-bill_n_1133501.html

nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 8:37 a.m. ( | suggest removal


nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 8:37 a.m.

Unelected regulators have no authority under the constitution. This authority is given only to those that are accountable to the voters for a reason.

frobert — December 7, 2011 at 8:59 a.m. ( | suggest removal


GO ahead and blur the lines people. Buy into the cheap conspiracy theories that line the Carnival Barker's pockets. lol. Some love to bring anarchy to stir the pot of discontent. These same carnival barkers and their easily led followers influenced the 2010 elections, and are scrambling to lend credence to their failed ideas that are breaking this country, while discrediting the people that are demanding a fair change to our system..

mrd- "I did't watch it, but read a report on it." Better to trust our own eyes...

**Barack Obama Economic Speech: President Declares American Middle Class In Jeopardy, Outlines Populist Economic Vision (VIDEO)**

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/06/barack-obama-payroll-tax-cuts_n_1132050.html

nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 9:01 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Great speech and hopefully sets the tone for 2012.

nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 9:02 a.m. ( | suggest removal


I checked out your blog and I think I signed in. Always up for debating, or is it the other way around? :)

nailingit — December 6, 2011 at 8:36 p.m.

I have it set up so that I must approve a person's first comment. Thereafter a person can comment at will. I've heard that Wordpress puts a time limit on it. That is, I don't know that a person can go waaaay back and comment. *shrug*

It'll ask for your email address. No one sees that, but me.

If you've "signed-up" then any of my future posts, or readers comments (all three of them ;^), will go to your email. I think. Pretty sure...

http://capndrift.wordpress.com/

Drift — December 7, 2011 at 9:08 a.m. ( | suggest removal


fro @ 8:59- Good morning. I'm glad Grover doesn't have any "authority" to "regulate" tax/increases or tax reform. :)

Are you still pulling for Paul? What do you think of the "true conservative" in the race in the form of Newt Leroy Gingrich? :))

Do you think there will be a rise in how many babies are named Newt Leroy? :)))

Do you think the formerly disgraced speaker's fine of $$$300,000 DOLLARS was excessive? :))))

nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 9:14 a.m. ( | suggest removal


nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 9:14 a.m

Newt is a neocon NOT a conservative. If Newt receives the nomination, I think Obama will have a pretty easy time getting reelected.

frobert — December 7, 2011 at 9:24 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Drift! I haven't checked out your entire blog yet, but what I have is most excellent! My schedule is weird as of late.

On the subject of legalizing all drugs, do you think it would lower the crime rate? If and when, (it's a matter of time you can only suppress people for so long imo.) should we free people that are currently incarcerated for sales, possession, manufacturing/intent? Don't mean to get the cart before the horse. Sometimes I wonder about this land of the free thing.

nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 9:28 a.m. ( | suggest removal


fro- I am as amazed as Newt that he is the strong favorite at this point. I think Dems should lay off the hit jobs on Newt until he is locked in. Man, this is going to be a fun election! After enduring last years incredible low-info voter turnout and the results that followed, the 2012 election could achieve the level of..an almost......religious experience. :) Numbers combined with knowledge combined with purpose, all rolled into one at the ballot box!

The Republican tea party members are the ones calling Newt "the true conservative".

nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 9:36 a.m. ( | suggest removal


nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 9:36 a.m

I'll wait for some votes to be cast before I believe the media's proclamation that Newt is the nominee.

frobert — December 7, 2011 at 9:42 a.m. ( | suggest removal


fro- You might find this article of interest.

"The exclusion of Paul, who pushes an isolationist foreign policy that would distance the United States from Israel, has caused some controversy, but not much (“He’s just so far outside of the mainstream of the Republican Party and this organization … [it would be like] inviting Barack Obama to speak,” quipped RJC head Matthew Brooks)."

http://www.tabletmag.com/scroll/85418/republican-jew-not-invited-to-republican-jewish-forum/

nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 10:04 a.m. ( | suggest removal


There are "heroin maintenance" programs in both Britain and Switzerland. Those along with decriminalization of possession of small amounts of drugs in Potugal have resulted in less crime.

Junkies can get their fix for pennies on the dollar, or even free. That sort of takes the need to rob someone to get high out of the equation. It also stifles the peddling. Why buy a bag of junk cut with who knows what when a person can go to a clinic. Not to mention overdoses and HIV plummeting.

Thanks for the kind comment on the blog, Nail. I do go off on rants now and again, but I try to keep it from going clear off'a the rails ;^)

Drift — December 7, 2011 at 10:09 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Oops, I forgot to address the incarceration thing.

Yes, if dope became legal then releasing nonviolent drug offenders would be a foregone conclusion.

Drift — December 7, 2011 at 10:13 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Sometimes I need to get derailed!

Totally agree on your points. We would save billions annually not locking people up for "victimless" crimes. Take a portion of the money currently used to jail, prosecute and house non-violent drug offenders, and channel said funds into rehab and real drug education. There would be less of a demand from those who use purely for rec purposes, at the same time cutting down incidents of disease like AIDS and Hep C. Education about smoking cigs and the problems it can cause has brought down the smoking rate dramatically. I'm a former tar and nicotine smoker myself. it was 5 years this November since quitting.

fro can chime in if I'm wrong, but I believe Libertarians believe along the same vein. Except I believe the Fed should have the power to de-criminalize, and it should not be left up to the states, where laws would dramatically vary from state to state.

nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 10:26 a.m. ( | suggest removal


It's my understanding that while addictive, heroin's physical hardship that it brings too many, would in part be minimized by decriminalization. It's the unnecessary additives that are used by illegal drug dealers to enhance it's profitability for the black market that causes many heath concerns. Using heroin that is FDA approved, as some do now, would be a safer alternative, as well as being less of a drain on healthcare.

nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 10:38 a.m. ( | suggest removal


From what I understand (no citations here) heroin isn't all that rough on human biology.

I recall when I was a teen some junk they called China White came to the market in the Southwest. Junkies were dropping like flies. It wasn't cut. A person would do the usual dose and O.D. Well, I suppose supression of the respiratory system could be characterized as "rough on human biology," but you get my Drift?

Incarceration was mentioned previously. Are you aware that the penalty for crack cocaine possession has recently changed? It was pretty hard to hide the fact that the disparity between crack and powder coke wasn't (isn't) driven by racism. I believe the previous penalty was called the thousand to one law, or something similar.

Those people sentenced under the old guidelines will begin to be released (they still must petition) at the beginning of the year.

As of today, this year, this country has spent in the neighborhood of 38 billion on the WoD. 1 1/2 million have been arrested on drug charges (a little more than 1/2 for cannabis) and we have incarcerated 10,000 people.

40,000 along the Mexican border have been killed.

Why?

Drift — December 7, 2011 at 11:40 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Drift- "Why?" rhetorical? I'll put my 2 cents in anyway. :) In part to increase the budgets of law enforcement to include our military. In part to bend over for a hypocritical conservative agenda. In part to segregate a portion of our population and put them behind bars. In part to enslave the powerless, and at the end of the day, given history, aren't Americans using just as much as any other country? Or...much much more?

nailingit — December 7, 2011 at 1:22 p.m. ( | suggest removal


i was talking to a gold investor yesterday. i mentioned geithner and how he's in europe. the scuttlebut is he's there to talk about the us propping up the euro. i asked my friend what he thought. 'hell yeah' was the answer. there are many billions at stake if the euro fails, and it's not the have-not's. i was told he was was going to prop it up with our credit, because the REAL powers in the world are going to keep their wealth. i said the people of america wouldn't allow that to happen, and he'd be gone, along with the entire obama regime. to which my friend said, 'yep'.

anybody ready for a military style government?

DeeLittle — December 7, 2011 at 1:40 p.m. ( | suggest removal


I like to pose "Why?" to prohibitionists. I suppose it's more bait than rhetorical. Yeah, shame on me, *blush*. Thing is, when one attempts to justify the "why" it sets up a situation where I can rebut -- line by line.

We are the drug trades' consumers. I believe use is pretty high in England as well. I'd have to do some looking to get the numbers. Those numbers (whatever the heck they are) haven't changed much since they were first tracked (again, no citation). It's all available with a quick search should someone care to check my memory.

Drift — December 7, 2011 at 1:55 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Hey, Dee, your *are* hip to recent defense spending bill that passed the Senate, right?

Drift — December 7, 2011 at 2:01 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Newt hasn't got a chance. I think the only way obama can lose is if he doesn't run. Between the two, voting will be for the lesser of two evils, and even though I detest obama and his puppets, it is a tossup as to who I like the least. At this point in time, I wouldn't want the job, but, when you have egos like politicians and visions of glory and riches, your mind doesn't always work properly. Besides, I'd rather have obama as president and the Republicans in control of both the house and senate. We'll see how smug obama is then.

cranky — December 7, 2011 at 4:53 p.m. ( | suggest removal


dee-

*anybody ready for a military style government?*

the government is. read and weep.

http://dprogram.net/2008/05/31/bush-replaced-rex84-with-new-martial-law-executiveorder/

mrd — December 8, 2011 at 7:20 a.m. ( | suggest removal


dee-

anybody ready for a military style government?

the government is. read and weep.

http://dprogram.net/2008/05/31/bush-replaced-rex84-with-new-martial-law-executiveorder/

mrd — December 8, 2011 at 7:24 a.m. ( | suggest removal


mrd- Just thought I would list today's "dprogramming". This is just more Glenn Beck/Alex Jones crap. "Reading material" such as this gives the National Enquirer a good name.

**Exclusive: Government Activating FEMA Camps Across U.S.
FEMA RED / BLUE LIST - Marked For TERMINATION
#OccupyWallStreet Officially Classified As Terrorist Group Along With Al-Qaeda
The Federal Reserve Cartel: Part I: The Eight Families
What Is The Best Country In The World For Americans To Relocate To In Order To Avoid The Coming Economic Collapse?
Rex 84 - Your Internment Camp Awaits You
The Alex Jones Show - December 6-7th, 2011**

nailingit — December 8, 2011 at 8 a.m. ( | suggest removal


**Dems warn: McConnell will regret these filibusters**

White House Counsel Kathy Ruemmler said the filibuster blocking a vote on D.C. Circuit Court nominee Caitlin Halligan amounted to a “new era of obstructionism.

Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1211/70047.html#ixzz1fxacSdXY

nailingit — December 8, 2011 at 8:11 a.m. ( | suggest removal


I know the kool-aid is strong people. But there are real issues...real problems...real elected officials that we can vote out, or vote in.

**The Evidence: Debunking FEMA Camp Myths**

Earlier this week, PM editor-in-chief James Meigs appeared on Glenn Beck's FOX news program twice to debunk conspiracy theories regarding supposed "concentration camps" being built by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. You can read transcripts from those appearances here and here. But PM's research went beyond what could fit in the short segments. Below are more details regarding some of the most prevalent claims, and facts, uncovered through PM's independent investigation.

Read more: FEMA Camps - Debunking FEMA Camp Myths - Popular Mechanics

http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/military/news/4312850

nailingit — December 8, 2011 at 8:20 a.m. ( | suggest removal


**Apocalypse Now – Glenn Beck and Food Insurance**
OCTOBER 19, 2010 BY MARIO PIPERNI

While Foodinsurance speaks of natural disasters as a reason to sign up to their program (not an illogical thought), Beck has a much different reason he wants you to store up on food.
“I want to talk to you about the changing world that we live in. I want to talk to you about a company that I found called Food Insurance,” Beck says in a segment of his radio show featured on Food Insurance’s website. “We have health insurance, this is real food insurance.”
“I finished my food storage, and I couldn’t believe how relieved I was,” Beck continues. “I remember sitting down on the stairs of the basement and looking at it, and thinking ‘I could lose my job, and my family will eat.’ Sometimes guys don’t realize how much pressure is on them.”
“Do the easy stuff now,” Beck says, in conclusion. “Prepare yourself for what we all hope won’t happen, but probably will, if you’re not prepared. Thanks.”
Got that? It’s a “changing world” – a changing world that in Beck’s devious mind began on January 20, 2009, the day a black, Marxist, liberal, socialist, Nazi, hater of white people became President of the United States. The day when Beck and his cronies figured out that if you can scare the hell out of them, then getting the suckers to buy gold, hybrid seeds and food insurance would be easy pickings.

http://mariopiperni.com/conservative-media/apocalypse-now-glenn-beck-and-food-insurance.php
___

nailingit — December 8, 2011 at 10:01 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Elections have consequences. An overused term no doubt. But all to applicable for this ridiculously absurd 2010 congress. Amazing.

**Imaginary Farm Dust Regulation Banned By House**

"We have spent an entire day debating about a bill that does not address an existing problem," said Rep. Diana DeGette (D-Colo.).

"This entire session of Congress has felt to many of us like a trip into Alice's Wonderland," said DeGette. "To paraphrase the Cheshire Cat, 'We're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad. ... You must be mad or you wouldn't have come here.' Sadly for the American people, H.R. 1633 simply underscores the 'madness' of this body right now."

Republicans countered that although no rule was proposed, they worried that someone might file a lawsuit someday to to regulate farm dust.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/08/house-votes-to-ban-imagin_n_1137332.html

nailingit — December 8, 2011 at 4:10 p.m. ( | suggest removal


**Heather Daughdrill Arrested: Louisiana Cops Say Bible Camp Teacher Had Sex With Boy**

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/07/heather-daughdrill-bible-camp-sex-scandal_n_1133851.html

nailingit — December 8, 2011 at 4:29 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Not much to laugh about in the news, is there? Time to pay a visit to The Daily 'Couve, boyz and gurlz! My favorite: Tim Leavitt joining forces with Dr. Gabriel to bring "bras for Haiti" to the forefront (literally).

Enjoy: http://dailycouve.blogspot.com/

manthou — December 8, 2011 at 8:01 p.m. ( | suggest removal


manthou- Too funny! Great pic of Perry! I didn't realize our Gov was so open minded. :)

nailingit — December 9, 2011 at 7:36 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Looks like DM is running for office as most folks thought. It seems almost everything this conservative has to say, as well as his ardent followers, revolves around a belief they are being victimized. This seemingly hypocritical elitist California millionaire who shouts at election time to vote down measures that provide support for the education of Vancouver's children, first responder services, medical care for our disabled and aging, needs to be taken to task much more than he is. I wonder if this paper will support his efforts to "help" Vancouver.

nailingit — December 9, 2011 at 7:50 a.m. ( | suggest removal


**GOP Presidential Candidates Woo Evangelicals**

Christian conservatives who typically hold powerful sway in GOP primaries haven't united behind any one candidate this year, though **they have generally been skeptical of Mitt Romney's Mormon faith.** Thus, their support is up for grabs in the extraordinarily fluid race. And neither Gingrich, who has recently pushed past Romney in some polls, nor Perry is being shy about seeking it.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/09/gop-presidential-candidates-evangelicals-iowa-caucus_n_1138666.html

nailingit — December 9, 2011 at 7:56 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Religious conservative Republicans who embrace Gingrich (properly pronounced Gingrik) are wonderful examples of today's conservative movement. The heart and soul of the GOP are prominently on display!

nailingit — December 9, 2011 at 8:06 a.m. ( | suggest removal


crazytrain — December 9, 2011 at 8:41 a.m

I wish you a happy birthday as well, my friend. Travel safe and we will be looking forward to your return.

Thanks to you and I miss Goldenoldie as well.

hawkeye — December 9, 2011 at 8:48 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Nicely put, Crazy Train. enjoy the holidays and the trip! I am sure we will still be nutty here when you return.

Happy B-day to both you and Hawk.

Nailingit-where did you see that DM is running for office?

luvithere — December 9, 2011 at 8:50 a.m. ( | suggest removal


nailingit — December 9, 2011 at 7:50 a.m.

Did I miss something? Has he actually declared his candidacy? It must be for a County job because he isn't a City resident.

hawkeye — December 9, 2011 at 8:53 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Sure sounds like it. And the responses that follow seem to indicate as such. Lou B had a good column this week on the baseball deal. It's too bad people like DM have such an influence. The sheep need someone to follow I suppose.

http://www.columbian.com/news/2011/de...

nailingit — December 9, 2011 at 9:07 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Nail, Lou's ( badly written) press talk and the comments do not sound to me as if DM is running. More likely we will see another one of his chosen few put up into a position to run.

luvithere — December 9, 2011 at 9:13 a.m. ( | suggest removal


luvithere- I think DM would have denied the inference that was obviously made. I hope you are right though!

nailingit — December 9, 2011 at 9:23 a.m. ( | suggest removal


crazytrain- A merry Christmas to you. You've undergone quite the personality transformation this year in your posts! Good luck to you and may your days be .. golden. ;)

nailingit — December 9, 2011 at 9:27 a.m. ( | suggest removal


That or he will announce at last possible moment. A guy like that just makes me wonder....if you are so into politics and your community, run already but stop putting up your puppets.

luvithere — December 9, 2011 at 9:28 a.m. ( | suggest removal


I think DM is ALWAYS running for something. If it isn't the "voice of the conservative party" in Vancouver, it's supporting someone that represents his views or that can be paid to represent his views.

As far as I'm concerned, he's a bored person with lots of money that needs something to fulfill his life and he thinks politics fits his needs.

hawkeye — December 9, 2011 at 9:38 a.m. ( | suggest removal


...it's too bad he idolizes dubya and shouts down community improvement. Unfortunately he seems to only endorse policies that speak to self interests, and not the community he lives in. Incredible but true. Conservatives will glom onto anyone that preaches their gospel of isolationism and elitism.

Look how they love Newt. :))

If a "judgement day" exists, it will be a very, very, and one more very, interesting day indeed!

nailingit — December 9, 2011 at 9:48 a.m. ( | suggest removal


**Ann Coulter Sounds Off On Marcus Bachmann's Sexuality, Says He's Straight But Seems 'Kind Of Gay'**

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/09/ann-coulter-marcus-bachmann-sexuality_n_1138784.html?ir=Politics

nailingit — December 9, 2011 at 9:56 a.m. ( | suggest removal


**Ron Paul: 9/11 Caused 'Glee In The Administration'**

GOP presidential candidate launched a harsh charge against the Bush administration Thursday night, alleging that it responded to the 9/11 attacks with "glee."

"Think of what happened after 9/11, the minute before there was any assessment, there was glee in the administration because now we can invade Iraq, and so the war drums beat," Paul told a gathering of students in Ames, Iowa, according to Politico. "That's exactly what they’re doing now with Iran."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/09/ron-paul-911-bush-administration_n_1139003.html

nailingit — December 9, 2011 at 10:25 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Is there anyone that can explain the myth that Republicans are for small government?

**GOP Jobs Bill Slashes Benefits, Allows States To Drug-Test The Unemployed**

Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.) cited a local business this week when he introduced a stand-alone drug testing proposal. "I had an employer tell me of an overwhelming response for job openings," said Kingston. "There was just one problem: Half the people who applied could not even pass a drug test."

But Kingston's office declined to name the employer or provide any information supporting the claim. When Gov. Nikki Haley (R-S.C.) made a nearly identical claim earlier this year, it **turned out to be completely untrue.**

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/09/gop-jobs-bill-unemployment-benefits-drug-test_n_1139325.html

nailingit — December 9, 2011 at 1:29 p.m. ( | suggest removal


WASHINGTON (AP) -- Congressional negotiators have tentatively settled on a **$5 billion increase** for the Pentagon's non-war budget as a mammoth spending bill is taking shape **behind closed doors** on Capitol Hill.

I guess I missed the memo. Evidently these a$$clowns solved the budget woes and can now spend more money. Happy days are here again.

I also read where 76% of registered voters don't believe the folks in Congress deserve their jobs. Maybe this election 85% of them won't get re-elected, har, har.

Same ol', same ol'. When will I ever learn?

mrd — December 9, 2011 at 2:26 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Neat lunar eclipse going on - guess Nature still provides some of the best entertainment!

roger — December 10, 2011 at 6:15 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Newt Gingrich says the Palestinians are an invented people.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/dec/10/palestinians-invented-people-newt-gingrich

Newt is out hustling support to try to maintain his front runner status into the Repub primaries. This comment was made during an interview on the Jewish Channel; he says the Palestinians are in fact nomadic Arabs with no legitimate claim to the territory Israel currently occupies - that this area was subjugated by the Ottoman empire centuries ago.

Question - Applying Newt's reasoning, how can we legitimize the Israeli state? Seems to me that the history of the Jewish people is one of their homeland being almost continually controlled by other empires; hence their "nomadic" presence throughout the Western world.

Per Balfour, when proposing the Zionist state that became Israel - "The Four Great Powers are committed to Zionism. And Zionism, be it right or wrong, good or bad, is rooted in age-long traditions, in present needs, and future hopes, of far profounder import than the desires and prejudices of the 700,000 Arabs who now inhabit that ancient land. In my opinion that is right."

Perhaps this rather cavalier dismissal of the Arabic peoples who were living there explains their hatred of both Israel and the Western world nations.

Newt is supposed to be a historian and a statesman. I'd say both are lacking here.

roger — December 10, 2011 at 6:48 a.m. ( | suggest removal


I totally agree roger, it's better than Lou's scanner news by far!

karma — December 10, 2011 at 6:48 a.m. ( | suggest removal


The Keystone pipeline project (briefly discussed here by Allen, Mr. Basil and me a couple of months ago) has suddenly become hot news - do we protect the environment and water supplies, or do we create jobs and decrease our dependency on Middle Eastern oil?

What I'm not hearing in the discussion is assurance that the oil will in fact be sold in this country. The pipeline's terminus is to be in the Texas refineries in Nederland, Beaumont and Port Arthur. These are some of the largest port cities in this country! What we need to hear is that the oil companies (Chevron owns Conoco; no idea who owns Sunoco) will not be allowed to export to the highest bidder (currently China?).

One of the smart things the Bush White House did was to stop Chinese acquisition of Conoco a few years ago - they cited national security. So instead they were taken over and made a subsidiary of Chevron. And what I'm having difficulty finding is how much they export.

roger — December 10, 2011 at 7:14 a.m. ( | suggest removal


The Obama administration wants legislation to make credit cards simpler to understand.

http://www.columbian.com/news/2011/de...

Might I suggest that if you don't understand how they work, you probably shouldn't get them? It's really quite simple - I really really want something that I don't have the money saved for, so I buy it on time. This is going to cost me more than the price of what I bought - money lenders aren't in business to be nice to me!!

Let's see.
- Get cards with the lowest interest rate. (If it's too low, or 0%, it'll probably jump to an extremely high rate after a period of time. Know the time for the jump, and use these cards only when you can pay off before that time comes.)
- Pay more than the minimum amount due so you can get your balance down. They make their money off of people who pay the minimum.
- Store credit cards will probably have the highest rates - especially after whatever their intro offer is expires. See above comments.
- If you belong to a credit union - see what they offer. Credit unions tend to be more concerned about the people who belong to them than the big banks are with their customers. Which often means better interest rates. (And if you're military, check out USAA - currently 6% APR.)
- Pay on time! Late charges are an abomination. This is one area where I can see a need for legislation - many of your large banks are slow with processing mailed payments; you can mail a payment days before the due date, and get hit with late charges because the payment wasn't processed on time. (Or maybe this has been fixed already? This happened to us about 10 years ago, and we quit using USBank, Citi, et.al., after that.)
- Above all - KEEP A BUDGET! If you can't afford to pay cash today, will you be able to handle payments without hurting yourself?

I suppose I left something out, but my point is that we don't need legislation - we need educated consumers.

roger — December 10, 2011 at 7:54 a.m. ( | suggest removal


sorry Roger but we're already screwed-pipeline or not. With a glut of gasoline now, the US actually is exporting more and more. But, due to total lack of competition and regulation of these industries, the price stays up. Next time someone says our "free markets" are affected by supply and demand, you might chuckle. The term "free market" is a lie. Markets are controlled by the big players, from the stock market on down. Mega-corporations exist for one reason alone, to enrich stockholders. They don't give a damn about you, me, or anything else.

"*The United States began exporting gas in late 2008. For decades prior, starting in 1960, the country used all the gas it produced here plus had to import gas from places in Europe.
But demand for gas has dropped nearly 10% in recent years. It went from a peak of 9.6 million barrels a day in 2007 to 8.8 million barrels today, according to the EIA.*
*Due to high prices and a weak job market, internal demand for gasoline in the US is down, this seems to be resulting in excess refining capacity and increased gasoline exports instead of lower prices.*"

mrd — December 10, 2011 at 8:07 a.m. ( | suggest removal


http://www.columbian.com/news/2011/de...

Here's an area where I agree with Jaime. She wants to hear from ALL the voters who'll be paying for this project, and she isn't sold on the value added vs. cost of light rail. Leavitt and Stuart represent the CRC, Identity Clark County, and others who stand to benefit from the currently proposed bridge plan.

roger — December 10, 2011 at 8:10 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Nice knowing ya all but I got my pink slip from Lou this am.

karma — December 10, 2011 at 11:47 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Leavitt works for PBS Engineering, a firm that has been awarded many Tir-Met contracts. How that's not a conflict of interest makes me wonder. I wonder how he'd explain to his employer why he dumped light rail?

But, as an elected official, we know he'll do the right thing completely above board, right?

mrd — December 10, 2011 at 11:47 a.m. ( | suggest removal


karma — December 10, 2011 at 11:47 a.m.

Say what?

hawkeye — December 10, 2011 at 6:03 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Of course obama wants credit cards simpler to understand. Most of his voters need simple. Don't forget how he won the election. He went after the young voters who have come through the public school system and are nearly illiterate. Along with them he signed up the ghetto dwellers who didn't care who he was as long as he promised to take care of them. Both of these groups probably sign their names with an X. It's for sure neither had a working brain when it came to the election. I'm not sure it can be made simple enough for most of these people, but, I'm sure obama will come up with a promise to bail them out if they vote for him.

cranky — December 10, 2011 at 7:03 p.m. ( | suggest removal



karma — December 10, 2011 at 11:47 a.m.
Say what?
hawkeye — December 10, 6:03 p.m

She said a few things in Lou's column that he called her on. I don't think he has banned her - yet. Close though; we can't have dissent in the ranks.

Cranky: I resent all that stuff you spouted there. Last time I looked, I do hold a doctorate. I consider myself to be very literate. I am also well read when it comes to the issues and politics. And no, I am also not a product of your public K12 schools that you dislike so much. Guess what? A house full of Obama supporters. See? I shot down your hypothesis of who voted for the guy right there.
Have a good night-I prefer to stick to the holiday spirit today.

luvithere — December 10, 2011 at 8:50 p.m. ( | suggest removal


cranky — December 10, 2011 at 7:03 p.m

Wow, crankster, I really resent your last statement. I don't think of myself as illiterate or a ghetto dweller and I think I have proven that here. However, I question your intelligence since you seem unable to understand that we still capitalize people's names. And yes, I am a product of the public school system, so what. I voted for President Obama as did the majority of the country (otherwise he wouldn't be President) and will again since the Republican'ts can't find anyone worthy.

I think it's a great idea to make credit card contracts easier to understand. Not everyone that is qualified to have a credit card it as smart as you think you are and I'd bet that even you would have trouble understanding everything in one of those contracts. If it takes a lawyer to write them, you can bet they write them to be understood only by another lawyer. Actually, I think it would be great if all contracts were written to be understood by most everyone without the services of a lawyer.

hawkeye — December 10, 2011 at 9:51 p.m. ( | suggest removal


From the other day-

dee-

anybody ready for a military style government?

local law enforcement agencies are using Predator drones to arrest Americans on US soil.

http://usnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2011/12/11/9360170-report-us-drones-helping-local-police-agencies

Who'da thunk it would come to this?

mrd — December 11, 2011 at 7:47 a.m. ( | suggest removal


I'm not sure why folks are getting their panties in a bunch over drones. Piloted aircraft are used quite often for sureillance. A simple example, "Highway Patrolled by Aircraft." How many times have you seen that?

During the summer months there's a small aircraft that routinely flies over Vancouver. The plane has a device attached to the starboard side and another built into the top of the vertical fin. No, I don't wear a tin hat. Look up this summer when you here a constant, uh, drone.

Piloted, or not, what's the difference?

Drift — December 11, 2011 at 8:05 a.m. ( | suggest removal


drift-

the difference is the drones are property of and operated by the US military. Congress didn't allow for or disallow their use on civilians in the US, but apparently someone decided it was OK. I don't wear a tin hat either, but since 9/11, I've seen many things that appear troublesome. From executive orders allowing the president to declare martial law, suspend elections, the over-reaching Patriot Act, bills being introduced to allow the US military to be used on American soil against American citizens, etc. I dunno, but a lot of things have changed lately. I might get a tin hat, but I won't wear it, not yet anyway as I trust our government would never resort to such tactics as, oh Syria, for example. After all, we're all about freedom and democracy, right? Even if it has to come from the end of a gunbarrel.

mrd — December 11, 2011 at 8:23 a.m. ( | suggest removal


http://www.abqjournal.com/main/2011/12/08/news/faa-tackles-new-drone-regulations.html

The defense budget legislation has *me* concerned.

Drift — December 11, 2011 at 8:37 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Oops. When I accessed the article by way of a search engine a subscription wasn't required.

Basically, it talks about the FAA and drone regulations as well as other uses for the aircraft (besides the military).

Drift — December 11, 2011 at 8:40 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Drift — December 11, 2011 at 8:40 a.m.

I read that article and the one thing, the most important thing, I took from it was a response from another reader that stated that drones and UAVs are totally different. Drones are unmanned and uncontrollable, UAVs are actually flown from the ground by a pilot.

hawkeye — December 11, 2011 at 10:15 a.m. ( | suggest removal


A good reminder from The Columbian this morning:

http://www.columbian.com/news/2011/de...

An idea the C shared last year that has become a new ritual with my family: www.tisbest.org

Want help in turning off the consumer machine? Pick up two of Martin Lindstrom's books, "Buyology" and "Brandwashed." You will never look at an ad or a shopping experience the same way again.

manthou — December 11, 2011 at 11 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Let's post this link and see if it works this time:

http://www.tisbest.org/

manthou — December 11, 2011 at 11:02 a.m. ( | suggest removal


Good point on drones and UAV's Hawk. Back when I was in the service drones were targets. Today, UAV's look for targets.

I'll go back to my original question about surveillance being performed with remote aircraft vs. piloted. Piloted, being blatantly performed since hot air balloons.

Other than possible safety concerns, what's the beef?

Drift — December 11, 2011 at 11:13 a.m. ( | suggest removal


I'd say the real concern is not the equipment but who's operating it. Current budget proposals have the Active force being downsized, with some fields being transferred to the Reserve Components. Buried in some of the articles, and voiced mainly as conjecture, is that the Reserves could be employed for law enforcement support in this country. If they mean the Nat'l Guard being called up by State Governors to support disaster relief - no problem. But if they mean the Reserves (federal under Title 10), then we need to be paying close attention.

roger — December 11, 2011 at 12:31 p.m. ( | suggest removal


luvithere,

I don't know whether to agree that Lynn Carman is Karma, but that definitely was an interesting exchange between her and Editor Lou. He slammed her for calling him a hater - and may have gone a bit far by saying he doesn't expect any better from her. Anyhow, seeing as her posts are still up, she hasn't been banned.

Also in his editorial is a post from Allen Anderson, who notes Lou should give more support to this side - Allen feels our discussions are much more informative than what passes for discussion on the facebook side. And Allen laments the departure of Goldenoldie and others, noting that troll attacks are driving people off.

This particular Allen is very conservative, while our recently departed Allen was somewhat liberal. On the other hand, Penny Schinke is now writing in the same style that Goldenoldie used....

roger — December 11, 2011 at 12:59 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Manthou,

The article notes that while times are tough and donations down, volunteering is up. That's good, at least. I checked the website you posted, and saw there are very few local charities listed. We have the Combined Federal Campaign at my work, and there are easily a couple of hundred local ones needing support. I wonder if there's any other resources to get the word out about these groups?

Some of our local chain stores - Safeway and PetCo come to mind - help make contributing easier on a year round basis with their round-ups and other small donations. ARC calls.

A problem I'm having is knowing which charities are good and which are bogus. For example, I'm not thrilled with the officious sounding guys who call saying they represent police and firefighters....

roger — December 11, 2011 at 1:20 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Roger, Karma is Lynn, but Penny is definitely not Goldie. Trust me on that one. Golden would never rant abotu Obama like Penny does, she gives blame to both sides (which we all should).
Allan A used to post here and most of the time he is reasonable. I do miss our Allan though, he sure added lots to the basement. In my opinion, they are trying to get rid of as many as possible here, make sure it becomes soft and boring in the cellar, then shut it down softly. But again-just my opinion. I might be wrong here.

luvithere — December 11, 2011 at 2:44 p.m. ( | suggest removal


luvithere — December 11, 2011 at 2:44 p.m.

I'm pretty sure penny is pen who used to post on here.

frobert — December 11, 2011 at 3:05 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Fro-agreed.

luvithere — December 11, 2011 at 3:11 p.m. ( | suggest removal


She holds the distinction of being the only person EVER to call me a p.c. leftie.

frobert — December 11, 2011 at 3:14 p.m. ( | suggest removal


LOL-you? Leftie? Riiiiight. That's Penny alright, I noticed her moving to the right more and more over time. And not much room left fro any disagreement either.

luvithere — December 11, 2011 at 4:03 p.m. ( | suggest removal


No doubt Lynn is Karma-Karma is golden oldie and also crazytrain and elisi, goldensminion and imo fiscaltiger was created by this person in order to dominate the threads...possibly a couple of others. (I'm sure I'll get yelled at!) The jigs up! About a year ago this place was trolled to death by the attention seeking person behind these postings/avatars. I believe we are seeing a health issue blossom, I'm afraid it is spiraling out of control. It is sad in one respect because there aren't that many "people" posting. On the other hand it's good that this is in the open. As to so many avatars, I'm not sure how it works. I suppose a trip to the library or whatever it takes to create so many could have happened.

Yes. Pen took her hate to FB. :)

manthou- Thanks for the reminder of how good many of us have it. And how easily we can lose it. Good charities need donations like never before.

nailingit — December 11, 2011 at 4:07 p.m. ( | suggest removal


*I'd say the real concern is not the equipment but who's operating it.*-roger

that's what I was trying to say-you said it better. also, I guess I didn't know the difference between a drone & a UAV. To me, unmanned was a drone.

mrd — December 11, 2011 at 4:47 p.m. ( | suggest removal


I didn't realize what tax cuts they were arguing about until I went back and reread this article. From the Democrat point of view, it's the Social Security reduction we got last year - NOT the so-called Bush tax cuts from about 10 or so years ago like I thought.

http://www.columbian.com/news/2011/de...

"Without congressional action by Dec. 31, the Social Security payroll tax will climb from 4.2 percent this year to 6.2 percent next year. Under that scenario, about 160 million middle-income American families, including 3.5 million in Washington, would see their take-home earnings decline by about $1,000 per year, Murray has said. Clark County residents earning the median income of $56,351 per year would lose $1,127 in take-home earnings next year, according to an estimate by Murray’s office."

This is a complete joke. I make a bit above the Clark County median (job and military retirement). When the cut was instituted, my SSN deduction went down one pay period. The next one, my federal tax went up. The following one, Oregon tax went up. My net gain was something like $5-10 per two week pay period. Hardly the $1100+ Sen Murray claims. And I had to increase my federal withholding to cover this "tax cut."

Also, I asked then and will repeat myself now. If Social Security is hurting, then why are the Dems wanting to take from that fund? Aren't they fighting to save these social programs?

As usual, THAT place (Wash DC) is stinking the whole country up.

roger — December 11, 2011 at 5:27 p.m. ( | suggest removal


nailingit at 4:07 PM: Sockpuppets have been a real problem on these anonymous forums for sure and most, I believe, came from a couple of commenters hungry for attention and control. Your list brings back post-traumatic memories of multiple personalities who would commandeer a thread for days from the likes of noworries, beams_my_way3, sokpop and yes, goldensminion and the dear departed fiscaltiger. I must chime in about Lynn Carman: not GO.

The best part of participating in these online discussions is their unpredictability, from my perspective. Throw something out there and see where it goes. Hope someone finds it and expands, carrying it deeper. However, trying to control the outcome of these online discussions is like trying to keep puppies corralled in a box. It is a surefire way to be disappointed and frustrated if you get invested in one outcome! :)

manthou — December 11, 2011 at 5:37 p.m. ( | suggest removal


roger — December 11, 2011 at 5:27 p.m

You could get a bigger raise if your job wasn't in Oregon, not to mention the traffic and travel costs.

manthou — December 11, 2011 at 5:37 p.m

I know what you mean, I have been me forever, and have had my share of ups and downs. I don't miss fiscaltiger though, too much stress there and high frustration level. However, I do miss Goldenoldie and as far as I can tell, she isn't on the FB side. By the way, who doesn't like puppies in a box?

hawkeye — December 11, 2011 at 7:34 p.m. ( | suggest removal


Hey, there hawkeye! Oh, the image of squirming, soft, cuddly puppies crawling all over each other in a box makes me smile. It was the concept of trying to keep them IN the box as they crawl and tumble out that is a hopeless cause...... :)

manthou — December 12, 2011 at 7:02 a.m. ( | suggest removal


manthou- I didn't mean to bring on PTSD! :) Control & win is the mantra for the personality described. Game over! was a common expression for this...entity, rather than conducting an honest exchange of ideas. I'm sure this troubled soul will return at some point, hopefully with a renewed outlook and a healthier mind.

nailingit — December 12, 2011 at 7:09 a.m. ( | suggest removal


...almost the same time! I'd started writing before you posted. Strange!

nailingit — December 12, 2011 at 7:11 a.m. ( | suggest removal


roger- Isn't it amazing the tax cuts for the rich pay for themselves, while tax cuts for the middle class require cuts in spending!

nailingit — December 12, 2011 at 7:17 a.m. ( | suggest removal


**Chris Matthews: Newt Gingrich's Fox News Appearances Helping Him In 2012 Race (VIDEO)**

Matthews, who has reveled in rather extreme characterizations of Gingrich, confined himself to a more restrained analysis of the man's relationship to Fox News viewers. After playing a clip of Gingrich on the network, he said, "he doesn't have to fight with anybody in particular, just speak his intellectual firepower there."

Matthews theorized that "hard-working guys and women come home in Iowa and places like that after they go to work, they don't watch entertainment shows, 'American Idol,' they watch the hard-nosed, right-wing stuff. Newt's on as one of their advisors. That's pretty intimate."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/12/chris-matthews-newt-gingrich-fox-news_n_1142954.html

We see what effect propaganda delivered by F news has on retired people who watch it 24/7. From Beck to Hannity to O'Righty to GINGRICH, the "news" becomes a right wing fantasy driven agenda.

And given the average age of the Fox news viewer is 65, one can only hope this "reporting" will die off, by attrition if not for any other reason.

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/blogs/live-feed/fox-news-oldest-cable-audience-54230

nailingit — December 12, 2011 at 8:02 a.m. ( | suggest removal


**Fraud Target: Senior Citizens**

Our Common Fraud Schemes webpage provides tips on how you can protect you and your family from fraud. Senior Citizens especially should be aware of fraud schemes for the following reasons:

Some good advice given on the FBI's website concerning fraud. Fox news isn't on there yet, but it's a matter of time. :) It explains in part, senior's receptiveness to different forms of fraud.

http://www.fbi.gov/scams-safety/fraud/seniors

nailingit — December 12, 2011 at 8:12 a.m. ( | suggest removal


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