Had Enough?

Me, too. I've been watching my Thrift Savings Plan (the federal version of a 401(k) plan) account dwindling over the past 14 months. It's down more than 25% from what it was in January 2008, and that's not including the money that I put into it since then. I've had enough. I was in the Lifecycle 2020 fund, which has a variety of investments of varying risk, set up for someone planning to retire around 2020, growing more risk-averse as time passes and retirement gets closer.

I had been thinking that Dow 7000 was going to be my floor, where I decided to get the hell out of the market, but as I watched the market continue to tank today, I realized that things aren't going to get better any time soon. With Obama and the drunk-on-power Democrats running things, the financial markets are only going to get worse. The left-wing soak-the-rich policies they are advocating are only going to make things worse, not better. There is no light at the end of the tunnel, and if there was, it would be an oncoming train.

So today, I took all of my remaining money out of that fund and put it all into the G fund, which is invested in low-interest government bonds and is the only fund guaranteed not to lose money. I also changed all of my future allocations to the G fund. I'm voting "no confidence" on Obama and his motley crew. I'm not going to even think about getting into any other fund until the Dow goes back over 9000. Sure, I'm not going to be able to make the money back when the market eventually starts going back up, but I won't lose any more money either if the market falls to 6000 or 5000 or God only knows how low. Screw it. I've lost enough, and it was money I worked damn hard for. My only regret is that I didn't do this on November 5th.


Wanna See Something REALLY Scary?

It was in a post I saw over the weekend at Gateway Pundit. Seems that President Obama is planning on getting the ball rolling this week on his cap-and-trade carbon plan to fight "global warming." It will, among other things, put punitive taxes on coal, which is used by many power plants to generate electricity. A Department of Energy study shows that the cost of coal for power generation could go up by between 161% and 413%. This would not only cause up to 4 million people to lose their jobs, increasing unemployment by 2.7%, but also would cause the electric bills of most Americans to skyrocket: They could double, triple, quadruple or even quintuple! Businesses would also be affected and would have to pass on the additional costs to their customers. Inflation would skyrocket as well. You think the economy is bad now? Watch what happens if this cap-and-trade plan is implemented. The economy took a major hit when gasoline went from $2.00 to $4.00 per gallon over a couple of years. What do you think will happen if electricity costs increase to something between two and five times their current rates, virtually overnight?

A lot of people are all in favor of "saving the planet," but how are they going to feel about it when their electric bill is almost as much as their mortgage or rent? Are they going to care about "saving the polar bears" when old folks on fixed incomes start dying because their power is cut off when they can't pay their bills, like that old codger in Michigan who froze to death a few weeks back? If Obama pushes this abomination through, I predict a run on tar, feathers and pitchforks among the citizenry.


Clyde Explains It All

It seems that two nuclear submarines have collided in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, one British, one French. The BBC story about the accident notes that "HMS Vanguard and Le Triomphant were badly damaged in the crash in heavy seas earlier this month."

This is what happens when you have people who drive on the wrong side of the ocean.

Presidents Day

Happy Presidents Day! (I'm assuming that there wasn't anything in the Democrats' stimulus bill changing the name of the holiday to Il Duce's Day.)

Well, it's been a couple of days since the Democrats in Congress passed their $787 billion stimulus bill, which none of them had actually read all of the way through. It would have been impossible for them to actually read it, since it was over 1100 pages long and only was completed late Thursday night; there wasn't sufficient time for ANYONE to actually read it. But no, they had to vote on it immediately, so that Nancy Pelosi could catch her plane to Italy for her vacation trip. The Founding Fathers must be spinning in their graves at such irresponsibility by Congress.

And Italy is a very, very appropriate destination for Pelosi, considering the path that our nation is on now. It is, after all, the original home of fascism, and as our government continues to bail out and buy out banks and businesses, it looks more and more fascistic all the time. If you haven't read Jonah Goldberg's Liberal Fascism yet, now might be a good time to do so. Well, actually, it would have been better if everyone had read it before November 4th, but that's water under the bridge.

Despite the Democrats in Congress ramming the bill through so quickly, President Obama wasn't around to sign the bill; he'll sign it on Tuesday when he returns from his weekend trip to Chicago. This tells you exactly how urgent the bill was, if it could wait three days to be signed, after there was less than a day for Congress to go over the pork-stuffed monstrosity. It wasn't a stimulus package with some pork in it, it was a pork package with some stimulus in it. Most of the money being spent won't create jobs; it's going for every Democrat wish list program under the sun.

What's in the bill? We don't know yet. There are bound to be any number of nasty surprises in it for those who are not feeding at the Democrat trough, things that will funnel money to questionable and partisan purposes, things that will advance the growth of the power of the federal government over the lives of the American people. They, after all, are wiser than you: Why shouldn't they take more of your money and decide how it should be spent? You'd just waste it, after all, and spend it irresponsibly pursuing happiness. Congress and government bureacrats, however, will be fully accountable for how they spend your...

Sorry, I just couldn't keep a straight face any longer. You have to laugh or else you'd cry.

We're all liberal fascists now. God Save the United States of America.


Happy 200th Birthday, Abraham Lincoln!

You're looking good, big guy!

You know, when I was a kid, this was a holiday...

Thoughts on Tuesday's Presidential Visit

I've been letting some thoughts percolate for a while regarding President Obama's visit to Fort Myers.

First of all, when the President comes to your town, it's a big deal, whether you voted for him or not. Roads will be closed, security will be tight, and the President won't see a whole lot of your town other than what he can see through the tinted windows of the Presidential Limousine. I doubt if President Obama spent more than ten minutes outside in Fort Myers in the entire time he was here, which was too bad. It was a beautiful day, but he was whisked from Air Force One to the limo, with a few minutes of meet-and-greet for local bigwigs, then he was off to the venue, where the limo went into an underground parking garage and inside the building. Afterwards, it was reversed.

One nice touch was that the motorcade went right down Martin Luther King Boulevard, which was Anderson Avenue up until several years ago when the main street running through the historically black neighborhood of Dunbar was renamed. When it became evident that the law enforcement presence was concentrated along that route, many people correctly divined that the President would be coming their way. There were probably a couple of thousand people along the road, cheering as the limo whizzed past them. It wasn't much, but it was deeply symbolic for many Dunbar residents. I'm sure that President Obama is the first president to ever go down that street, and those who saw him were thrilled about it.

For the President, of course, it becomes routine. He doesn't see any moving vehicles other than his own motorcade, because all nearby traffic is blocked off for security reasons. He doesn't see a red light, and won't for the entire four year term of his presidency. He is not just a VIP, he is the Most Important Person, as far as the Secret Service and local law enforcement are concerned.

It all comes with a downside, of course: The President's day is tightly scripted, and his time is not his own. He has some input into his schedule, of course, but many things are obligatory. Every word he speaks and every action he takes will be under the microscope. And wherever he goes, it is an EVENT, with prior coordination with the locals and scheduling down to the minute. He can't just say, "Hey, what's down that road? Let's go take a look." Security concerns won't allow it.

And no matter where he goes, he will have a Secret Service escort with him. That doesn't end when he leaves office, either; former presidents also have Secret Service details. For the rest of his life, the President will never be able to live a "normal" life; the loss of spontaneity is one of the costs of winning the highest office in the land.


An Ironic Twist

I saw in the L.A. Times that federal judges may force California to cut their prison population by up to 40%, leading to the release of up to 57,000 inmates. It seems that some of the inmates had filed suit, claiming that prison overcrowding was preventing them from getting proper health care and mental health treatment.

Now, if it was up to me, the first thing I would do would be to release every single non-violent drug offender. That would probably come pretty close to cutting the inmate population down to what the Feds want. Locking up non-violent drug offenders is, to put it mildly, stupid. People who have harmed no one but themselves are being branded as felons, and the taxpayers have to pay for the cost of their incarceration. It's a waste of money.

The ironic twist is that if California has to release 57,000 inmates, where will they then get their health care and mental health treatment? Considering that they will be ex-cons going into a tough job market, they'll have a hard time finding employment. Sure, it's all skittles and beer for the inmates remaining behind in their less-crowded cells, but the ex-cons suddenly on the street may find themselves even worse off than they were in prison.


Obama Coming Tuesday

I just saw on the White House press conference that President Obama will be coming to Fort Myers on Tuesday for some kind of town hall meeting to plug the stimulus package. White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs noted that a year ago, the unemployment rate here was 7%, but that it is now up to 10%.

During the housing boom, this area had one of the lowest unemployment rates in the nation, because everyone was building houses. With the crash of the housing market a couple of years ago, the people who used to work in construction were thrown out of work. This area had been overbuilt for the population, but everyone thought that they were going to get rich from real estate, buying properties and turning around and flipping them for big profits. It worked during the housing bubble, but when the bubble burst, the speculators were ruined. And because they had built so many new houses that nobody could afford to buy, many of them stood empty. Even more were abandoned half-completed.

I hope that Obama's people do their homework and understand the sort of questions they are likely to field at the town hall meeting. While both Vice-President Biden and Governor Palin made appearances here during the campaign, this will be Obama's first visit to Fort Myers. The good news for him is that that he should get some nice weather, much nicer than Washington. The bad news is that he won't have much time here to enjoy it.

Page One... (Updated and Bumped)

Of the new Obama administration job application:
1. Have you paid your taxes?

2. ALL of them?

3. Are you SURE?

4. Has your spouse paid all of his/her taxes?

5. Has everyone else in your immediate family paid all of their taxes?

(If you answered 'YES' to all five questions, continue on to Page 2.)


Hopes Daschled

It wasn't a good day for President Obama yesterday, as two of his nominees bit the dust due to tax problems. Former Sen. Tom Daschle, who had been tapped to become Secretary of Health and Human Services, and Nancy Killefer, who was supposed to become the newly-created Chief Performance Officer, both withdrew their names from consideration after their tax problems came to light. This was after Timothy Geithner survived his tax scandal to become the new Secretary of the Treasury (which oversees the Internal Revenue Service). As many people have asked on the internet in recent days, "Don't ANY of these people pay their taxes?" Or is tax-paying just for "the little people" like you and me? All I can say is that if Leona Helmsley was still alive, she'd probably have been nominated for a cabinet post!

Pity poor President Obama! He announced upon taking office that he would have the most ethical administration in history, but alas, all he had to work with to create an ethical administration were Democrat politicians and apparatchiks. You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear. Not that the Republicans are much better; if Diogenes were to come back to Earth seeking an honest man, he might as well just skip Washington.


Visualizing Michael Phelps' Next Commercial

When I saw this picture of Olympic gold medal-winning swimmer Michael Phelps:

All I could say was, "Dude! I hope that's a water-pipe, man!"

Now, some people worry that this faux pas could cause him to lose some commercial endorsements. However, as I see it, this broadens his appeal to a whole new audience: All of those people who were too stoned to watch him during the Olympics. I foresee something like this:

"Dude! It's Michael Phelps, man! When 4:20 rolls around at my house, I usually get chronically hungry. When I do, I like to break out a big bowl of Orville Redenbacher's Gourmet Popcorn. Then, I like to hit Burger King for a Whopper with cheese and some onion rings. Super size it, dude! Then I like to have a big bag of Doritos, original cheese flavor, and for dessert... Dude, you gotta try these Oreo Cakesters! They rock! So for now, hang loose, and I'll catch you on the flip flop..."