Monday, August 31, 2009

Judge says ‘gay’ isn’t defamatory

Does this mean we can say "that is so gay" again?
A companion of late Playboy model Anna Nicole Smith can sue an author for defamation but not over gay sex claims because homosexuality is no longer viewed as contemptible, a U.S. judge said on Wednesday.

Stern claimed the book, which was published six months after Smith's death, contained 19 libelous statements, including that he had engaged in oral sex at a Los Angeles party with Larry Birkhead, the father of Smith's child, and that Smith had later called Stern gay.

U.S. District Judge Denny Chin ruled the defamation case could proceed on 11 of the statements.

Chin dismissed Stern's claims that statements implying he was homosexual were defamatory

Friday, August 28, 2009

There is no untaxed lunch

Forget free lunches, there is no untaxed lunch.
But many of those cashing in on the clunkers program are surprised when they get to the treasurer's office windows. That's because the government's rebate of up to $4500 dollars for every clunker is taxable.

Before and After Obamacare

Had the White House not taken down their informant email ( tip line, they might have received these before and after flowcharts.

Flowchart of Obamacare

This flowchart is from the U.S. House Republican Conference

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Dem Congressman Calls Blue Dogs "Braindead"

Apparently this is what some people think about Gene Taylor.
A key House liberal suggested Thursday that party moderates who've pushed for changes in health care legislation are "brain dead" and out for insurance company campaign donations.

Moderate Blue Dog Democrats "just want to cause trouble," said Rep. Pete Stark, D-Calif., who heads the health subcommittee on the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee.

"They're for the most part, I hate to say, brain dead, but they're just looking to raise money from insurance companies and promote a right-wing agenda that is not really very useful in this whole process," Stark told reporters on a conference call.
Right, Gene Taylor loves insurance companies. I'm sure people believe that. It could be, just maybe, that most Americans oppose this health care plan. Most Republicans, yes. Most independents, yes. Many Democrats, including some like Gene Taylor. For liberals, you must be either "brain dead" or profiting from insurance companies if you oppose them. That shows how out of the mainstream they are.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Gene Taylor Rejects ObamaCare; Suggests He Will Not Again Vote for Nancy Pelosi

Gene Taylor faced off close to a thousand people at his town hall last night, with more unable to get in the door.

A line the length of a football field had formed by 4:30 p.m. Monday as people waited for Pelican Landing to open for Rep. Gene Taylor’s 6 p.m. town hall meeting, deputies said.

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office dispatched more than two dozen units to handle crowd and traffic control as hundreds of people either waited outside or in the lobby for a chance to get in.

Others left after being turned away.

Capacity for the building is 1,000, and a sheriff’s reserve officer estimated that between 1,500 to 2,000 came.

Even though deputies took signs from people who entered and kept them at the door, “everything was peaceful,” said Cliff Miller, chief of the Sheriff’s Reserves.

Miller said there was no room for signs and the seating was too close. It was a safety issue.

“There were no arguments,” he said.

Civic leader Harry McDonald left early because it got too hot inside the packed building.

He described the atmosphere inside as tense at times.

“Nothing he says comforts you,” McDonald said. “Most of the people are over 65 and are in turmoil.”

--Sun Herald "Hundreds turned away from meeting"
Taylor is opposed to ObamaCare.
“The health care bill is projected that even with the changes that are coming out, if they are able to get them out of it, it is costing us maybe $900 billion tax dollars more, $900 billion of new debt,” Taylor said. “We just don’t have that kind of money.”

“I thought it went about as good as it could, given the passion of the (health care) issue,” Taylor said.

--Sun Herald "Overflow Crowd Grills Taylor"
And he believes health care reform will not pass this September.
"If I'm going to be there, I like a big crowd, and I thought they asked some great questions and I thought it went really well," Taylor said about the meeting.

Taylor opposes the President's plan, including the "public option" idea for insurance. Instead, Taylor wants to see more competition among the insurance companies.

He said several times Monday night he will stick to his position and vote against health care reform in September.

Taylor assured him and others that no change in the plan will convince him to vote in favor of it.

Taylor said he understands the frustration people are feeling about the possible reform.

"When it comes to the healthcare of a loved one, there is no budget," Taylor said. "It's that intense of an issue, say emotional issue."

Although plenty of people spoke out at the meeting, Taylor said he believes it went well.

"I thought it was fine," he said. "There was some intensity on people who were for it, people who were against it. People had the opportunity to ask good questions. I'm glad they came out, we had good discussions."

Taylor said in the meeting he does not believe health care reform will be voted into law this September. President Obama's deadline for reform is September 15th.

--WLOX "Taylor's town hall meeting draws big crowd in Moss Point"

(Photo from Sun Herald, for this and more: OVERFLOW CROWD GRILLS TAYLOR)

The town hall has gotten a lot of responses. Andy Taggart posted the difference in two Mississippi Blue Dogs.
Last night, Democratic Congressman Gene Taylor rolled up his sleeves during a tough, public and open town hall meeting in Moss Point and discussed issues with a contentious crowd that at least one reporter estimated at 1,000 folks. Upon announcing his opposition to ObamaCare, Taylor got a standing ovation from the crowd.

Tonight, on the other hand, Democratic Congressman Travis Childers is having a "tele-town hall meeting", which, I guess, means, you can call in if you want to, but your congressman will be in an office with a speaker phone.
Really, Childers? A phone call? If this is how government does democracy, wait until they do your health care. Really?

But Y'all Politics has the real scoop in sharing that Gene Taylor indiciated he would not again vote for Nancy Pelosi for Speaker of the House.
Then he opened the question and answer period by saying:" Under no circumstances will I vote for any Health Care Bill". That brought down the house with applause, cheers and whistles.

His comments about being adamantly opposed to National Health Care was quite a change from his town hall meeting three weeks ago in Waynesboro or on previous appearance on WLOX TV News shows when he said he would not vote for Nationalized Health Care unless he could be assured it would not increase the deficit!

He also said he would not support Cap and Trade legislation calling it a Ponzi Scheme!

It was obvious that the anti-Obama people outnumbered the Democrats 5 or 6 to 1 and Taylor, when confronted with remarks from the local head of the NAACP, Curley Clark who wanted to know what Taylor would do for
The "hard-working Mississippians who don't have health care, Taylor responded: " We have only agreed to guarantee health care for our Veterans and that's all."

Taylor was questioned about his vote to install Pelosi as Speaker of the House and said she had promised him she would support his efforts on catastrophic insurance coverage, which he said she did not. He strongly suggested he would not vote for her again as Speaker of the House.
Sun Herald Video: Overflow crowd at Taylor meeting

Sun Herald Video: Gene Taylor town hall meeting (Go to the 1:13 mark to see Taylor say he will not vote for the health care plan to cheers and get a standing ovation)

WLOX: Congressman Gene Taylor is in Moss Point to talk about healthcare

Monday, August 17, 2009

Obama Lowers The Flag

Apparently, the White House has scrapped which means no more reporting Respond Mississippi to the Obama Administration.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Two Views of Evil: Bush, Reid

Along the lines of Tuesday's post regarding comes these two views of evil.
"Tomorrow, when you get back to work, work hard like you always have. But we've been warned. We've been warned there are evil people in this world. We've been warned so vividly. And we'll be alert. Your government is alert. The governors and mayors are alert that evil folks still lurk out there. As I said yesterday, people have declared war on America and they have made a terrible mistake. My administration has a job to do and we're going to do it. We will rid the world of the evil-doers." - President George W. Bush, September 16, 2001

People who are disrupting town halls with "lies, innuendo and rumor," and not letting others speak are "evil-mongers" said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada)
For Bush, evil is flying airplanes into the World Trade Center. For Reid, evil is opposing Obama and the Democrats.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Tobacco Taxes miss estimates

The National Center for Policy Analysis took a look at the new federal excise tax on cigarettes for the S-CHIP program. (You'll remember this as being one of the early broken promises by the Obama Administration. During the campaign, Barack Obama and Joe Biden repeated time and again that if you make less than $250,000 a year, your taxes would not increase. They lied.)

The conclusion:
Using tobacco tax increases to fund health care for low-income children is a bad idea. As the taxes imposed on tobacco products increase, revenues are likely to fall - requiring increases in other taxes. In addition, small businesses and their employees are likely to suffer, and the impact on public health is likely to be negligible, or even negative.
Mississippi was smart not to tie the tobacco tax to health care. But the cigarette tax was sold to off-set another tax, the new car sales tax, which is used to off-set the car tag tax that is too high for people. Legislators incrased taxes to off-set low tax revenues directed at hiding the pain of another tax that is too high.

That was the fight earlier this year. Now it is clear what will happen next. Last May, in its opposition to the cigarette tax increase, Citizens Against Government Waste predicted: "When the expected tobacco tax revenue fails to materialize, the politicians in Jackson will end up increasing yet more of your taxes to make up the shortfall!"

Sure enough, the Mississippi Tax Commission's July 2009 revenue numbers released earlier this month show the tobacco tax income failed to hit projections by 17.99%. Overall, tax revenue came in at almost 10% under projections. That means two things: massive cuts and legislators itching to raise taxes. Their answer will be that they didn't get the revenue they expected last year, so they have to raise more. Here are some of the biggest misses of projections versus reality in July 2009.

Sales Tax: -10.81%
Individual Income Tax: -17.66%
Tobacco Tax: -17.99%
Oil Severance Tax: -33.51%
Natural Gas Serverance Tax: -63.42%
Installment Loan Tax: -35.98%
Title Fees: -30.77%

Mississippi can not tax itself into prosperity. The answer is not higher taxes. The answer is cutting government. So as legislators begin looking at the next budget, remind them: don't raise taxes, cut spending.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Sid Salter gets it right on his blog.
When protesters from the left — environmentalists, labor unions, the pro-choice lobby, civil rights advocates, health care reform advocates, anti-war activists, you name it — take to the streets, disrupt speeches or public meetings or shout down speakers, it's hailed as political activism and noble expressions of dissent. Most of the time, those protests are cloaked in the most noble of terms: "Speaking truth to power."

But when protesters from the right — TEA party organizers, the pro-life lobby, gun owners, veterans groups, fiscal conservatives, capitalists, free marketers and anti-immigration groups — take to the streets, disrupt speeches, or shout down speakers, they are tarred by the federal government as right-wing extremists and it is suggested that their ideas are subversive in nature. is billed as "Democracy in action."

But the National Taxpayers Union and similar organizations are part of the "vast right-wing conspiracy."

It's disingenuous in the extreme for the Obama administration to complain about organized opposition to some of his initiatives — not while the administration itself is a well-oiled public relations machine churning out an electronic torrent of e-mails, tweets and other digital information designed to sway the public toward supporting its goals or opposing those who questions them.
We have the leaders of the U.S. House of Representatives - the Speaker of the House and the Democratic Majority Leader - calling dissent "Un-American" in a guest column in a national newspaper.

We have the White House Deputy Chief of Staff calling on Democrats that get "hit" by dissent to "punch back twice as hard.”

We have the White House asking citizens to forward to the Obama Administration emails that conflict with their message on health care, "If you get an email or see something on the web about health insurance reform that seems fishy, send it to" I'm not sure if the "flag" references Old Glory or whether it references our new patriotic duty to identify dissent and inform the government, or maybe both.

The Obama Administration might be violating the law with, not that most media outlets are reporting it. Can you imagine the outrage if the Bush Administration had asked citizens to forward "fishy" emails of dissent against the war in Iraq? There would have been talk of impeachment.
"The White House is in bit of a conundrum because of this privacy statute that prohibits the White House from collecting data and storing it on people who disagree with it," Judge Andrew Napolitano, a FOX News analyst, said Friday.

"There's also a statute that requires the White House to retain all communications that it receives. It can't try to rewrite history by pretending it didn't receive anything," he said.

"If the White House deletes anything, it violates one statute. If the White House collects data on the free speech, it violates another statute."

Napolitano was referring to the Privacy Act of 1974, which was passed after the Nixon administration used federal agencies to illegally investigate individuals for political purposes. Enacted after Richard Nixon's resignation in the Watergate scandal, the statute generally prohibits any federal agency from maintaining records on individuals exercising their right to free speech.
What would our Founding Fathers think?
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Presley Lashes Out when PSC Modifies His Campaign Promise

Northern District Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley ran on a campaign in 2007 to enact "Presley's Plan" which included a ratepayers bill of rights that would "punish scam artists" and "make utility bills easy to read" and require live people to answer the phones when you call with a question. Here is his campaign commercial.

Last week, the other members of the Public Service Commission decided to study a ratepayers bill of rights, but it wasn't Presley's prepared one. The Jackson Free Press said, "Presley lashed out at fellow commissioners Lynn Posey and Leonard Bentz" and grew furious when he discovered that his fellow commissioners refused to give his bill an up or down vote."

There are three members on the commission. Two of them had a different idea in mind. So when Presley made his motion, there was no one there to second it. No motion is in order without a second. But Presley flipped out. As the Jackson Free Press reports Presley whines:
"So if a commissioner makes a motion to vote and somebody doesn't want to do it then we don't have to vote on it, because you don't want to take a vote on it? Is that really how this works?" he demanded. "We've spent all this time putting this proposal together and nobody wants to take a vote on it? If you're against it, just vote on it. What are you afraid of?...If you want to vote against this ratepayer's bill of rights, if you want to vote against people who can have their power cut off in the winter time or the summer time, then let's do it, but this is not fair. I circulated this proposition four months ago and nobody's said a word against it until today, and now today we've take this little shift and say we're going to ask the companies to tell us what they think we ought to do to protect ratepayers? I don't understand it."
Then came the press releases. Presley's statement described the PSC as making a "curious move" and said "Honestly, I am stunned." Presley wants to write the document but the other commissioners want input from the utilities. Presley called this "asking the fox to protect the hen house." Later he appeared "On Deadline with Sid Salter to say, "I'm just stunned and disappointed...It makes me sick that we set on this for six months...The key comes down to who is leading on this issue, we were elected to lead...that's our job and its just a minor little bit of a disagreement."

The other commissioners were more conciliatory and even praised Presley.

Central District Public Service Commissioner Lynn Posey said in his press release:
Today, the Mississippi Public Service Commission declared its intent to consider the adoption of additional and/or amended rules under their jurisdiction, more specifically a “Ratepayers’ Bill of Rights.” The proposed rule would affect the existing “Rules and Regulations Governing Public Utility Service.” Commissioner Posey stated that, “It has always been this Commission’s intent to adopt a “Ratepayers Bill of Rights” since the idea was first offered by Commissioner Presley, but the majority of the Commission felt that this was the appropriate way to handle this matter.” Additionally Posey stated that, “Commissioner Presley and his staff are to be commended for their efforts in this matter,” and that he “looked forward to their continued input as the Commission moves forward with this project.”
Southern District Public Service Commissioner Leonard Bentz said in his press release that the current proposed bill of rights just needs "tweaking":
“We have been looking closely at a way to adopt a Ratepayers’ Bill of Rights that will be beneficial to each and every Mississippian. The current Ratepayers’ Bill of Rights that has been proposed still needs some tweaking. We have a good outline for a Ratepayers’ Bill of Rights in front of us, but we need to make sure that if it is adopted, that the items that are in it work to protect all ratepayers. For example, we need to look more closely at the protections for Senior Citizens, and some of the guidelines for termination of services.”
Later, Bentz appeared on Sid Salter's radio show after Presley and said:
"We're not that far apart on this deal...The commission is united and we're working towards the goal of protecting the ratepayer and you know we've also got to keep the lights on in the state of Mississippi and we're going to continue that goal."
Regarding Presley's "fox guarding the hen house" allegation Bentz told Salter:
"But we do need input. We need to know how many cutoffs they've had. We need to know who's paying their bills, who's not paying their bills. We need inputs from them. We need inputs from the ratepayers."
And regarding the appearance of animosity from Presley, Bentz said:
"Brandon Presley is my friend. Lynn Posey is my friend. Commissioner or not. And we're going continue to be friends. we're going to have differences of opinions. We're not going to fight about it. We're going to cast our vote and move on. You've seen that at the Commission. There has not been a lot of rancor at the commission. We've tried to move forward in a good positive direction and hopefully we'll continue to move in that direction in the future."
Y'all Politics asked, "Are PSC Commissioners Lynn Posey and Leonard Bentz distancing themselves from Brandon Presley?" It appears it might be the other way around. Posey and Bentz want to get input from all parties on a regulation while Presley wants the input to come just from him. He would take his ball and go home if this wasn't his only playground in town. Stay tuned for what happens next.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Nugent and the Right to Bare Arms

Ted Nugent speaks on the Second Amendment to KRLU - Public Television, Austin, Texas.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Free AK47 with Truck Purchase; Car Dealer Bests CNN

The CNN reporter is unable to shake this car dealer from Missouri who is giving away a free AK47 with the purchase of a truck.


President Barack Obama's Health Care Plan: Reforma