Thursday, November 30, 2006

Democrats are considering breaking campaign promise already...

Please read this article:
<http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/11/29/AR2006112901317_pf.html>

I will be extremely angry at The Democratic Party if they break their MOST REPEATED campaign promise. The Democrats promised to implement all of the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission. They promised this OVER and OVER.

Please read these quotes from Pelosi and Reid:
<http://releases.usnewswire.com/GetRelease.asp?id=67432>
<http://www.lasvegassun.com/sunbin/stories/lv-other/2006/oct/09/566615247.html>

Nothing has been done yet and this is just talk and so I do not put much stock in it.

If The Democrats break this promise and do not implement all of the recomendations of the 9/11 commission in the first "100 hours" they will pay a political price for it.

What do Robert Rouse, John Good, and Jeff Pruitt think?

Mike Sylvester

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Karen Goldner, Fort Wayne City Council

I went to the "kick-off" party for Karen Goldner's campaign for Fort Wayne's 2nd City Council District this evening.

It was a well-attended event and I thought it was a good start for Karen's campaign.

Karen gave a short speech and said she had five priorities:
Jobs, Jobs, Neighborhoods, Downtown, and Jobs.

So she and I agree on four of the five; we obviously do not agree on "downtown."

I only knew a few people at the event:
Tina Taviano, Democratic candidate for sheriff in 2006
Glenn Hines, Democrat on Fort Wayne City Council
Tim Pape, Democrat on Fort Wayne City Council

Don Willis was at the event as expected. Don Willis is the founder and Chairman of FourthWave LLC. Karen Goldner works for FourthWave LLC. If Don Willis gets on board with Karen's campaign, as I expect, Karen will be able to run a well funded campaign!

This will be interesting to watch. I am looking forward to it.

As many of you know I attended several meeting of the Fort Wayne City Council group that helped re-district Fort Wayne due to the Aboite annexation. The new City Council Districts on the north side of town were changed based on my recommendations. The changes moved both Karen Goldner and myself into the 2nd City Council District.

This should be an interesting race to watch.

Mike Sylvester

Clarification of military opt-out

Several people mis-understood my previous post so I am going to clarify it and add to it.

My previous post talks about how scary to me it is that about 2/3 of the total kids who opted-out of being "recruited" in Allen County are from Homestead high school.

The point of the post was not about the opt-out program; it was supposed to be about how strange it is that 2/3 of the kids who opted-out attend Homestead high school.

Many of you thought I was against the opt-out procedure. I will clarify my position on that. One of the worst laws passed in recent years is "The No Child Left Behind Act." I have posted a lot about this "Act" and how I am against the Federal government getting more involved in education... One of the provisions of that "Act" was the opt-out procedure.

I am not against the opt-out procedure. Choice is good. I do not see anything wrong with being taken off the "recruiters list" so that the military is not contacting people who are not interested in the military.

I am not sure who I think should be the ones to determine if the student should opt-out. Should it be the parent or the student? In my opinion I think the form should have to be signed by BOTH the parent AND the student.

The area served by Homestead high school has the families with the highest median income in Allen County. That area is considered very Republican according to the Allen County voter database. Most of the student population opted-out.

The area served by Carroll high school serves the families with the next highest median income in Allen County. That area is considered very Republican according to the Allen County voter database. About 3% of the student population opted-out.

I find the above two paragraphs amazing.

How about you?

Mike Sylvester

Monday, November 27, 2006

Scary Allen County statistic

Please read the article:
<http://www.fortwayne.com/mld/journalgazette/news/16102184.htm>

The article discusses the number of kids (or their parents) who opt-out of being on a list of potential recruits for the US military in high school.

This is a scary statistic.

Homestead High School has about 2/3 of the kids who opted-out. Carroll has 2% of the kids who opted-out...

How is this possible?

Most scary to me; only a total of 30 Homestead juniors and seniors did NOT opt-out...

Are they having peace rallies every day at Homestead?

I thought "Aboite" was full of Republicans?

What is the scoop AWB and John Good?

Mike Sylvester

Friday, November 24, 2006

CPA Exam, FAR

As many of you know I took the FAR (Financial) portion of the CPA Exam on October 3rd. I just got my score online today and I got at 82. So I passed! You need to get a 75...

After I took the exam I thought I had a raw score of about 75...

So I have passed two portions and have two to go.

I took REG on October 30th and it did NOT go well. Interestingly enough that is the one that I felt best about out of the four before taking it...

I take the fourth section on November 30th... It is auditing...

Mike Sylvester

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Democratic "talking point" is a lie

I like to read John Good's blog, <http://leftinaboite.blogspot.com/>. He does a great job with his blog and he does a fairly good job of illustrating The Democratic point of view. That being said he posted a piece entitled "Hunger has been eliminated" that is one of the least accurate pieces I have read in a long time.

Please go and read the article entitled "Hunger has been eliminated" at <http://leftinaboite.blogspot.com/> and then come back here and we can discuss it.

I have copied the post here for ease:

Hunger has been eliminated!

Paging George Carlin. . .Mr.Carlin, your country needs you. . .

Claiming that the term "hungry" is "not a scientifically accurate term for the specific phenomenon being measured in their food security survey, and stating that "we don't have a measure of that condition", the US government has decided to drop the word "hunger" from its vocabulary. The condition formerly known as hunger shall henceforth be referred to as "very low food security". Statistically speaking, hunger will no longer exist in America.

The government report follows five straight years of increases in the number of Americans unable to afford the food they need. While the USDA may feel comfortable saying there is no hunger in America, simply because they can't find a precise scientific measure to describe it. It is not so difficult. In fact, it's so easy a child could do it. A young boy at a San Francisco food pantry knows exactly how to describe hunger. He says, "My stomach is touching my back.

"If the government stops using the word "hunger," people may begin to believe that hunger has gone away. It hasn't. Just ask that little boy whose stomach is touching his back. However, by any name, the statistics are grim: 35 million people in America are living in "food-insecure" households. Seniors and children are especially at risk. Hunger is especially devastating for our most vulnerable citizens: children and seniors.

Yet for the past six years, the Bush administration has been cutting food-assistance programs, and in some cases, proposing to eliminate them. The continued unraveling of our nation's food safety net, will mean that more elderly Americans will go to bed hungry, more working poor parents will have to choose between paying the rent or putting food on the table, and more children will perform poorly in school and be unprepared for productive work lives.

The new Democratic-led Congress has an important opportunity to reverse these policies. They can take the lead in combating hunger by restoring and increasing funding for the government food-assistance programs that provide vital nutrition to low-income Americans. And they should never be afraid to call hunger by its name.


My comment I left on his blog is below:

I am NOT sure where to start with this post...

The fact that the Feds want to stop using the word "hunger" helps to show how silly these large Government programs really are...

The rest of this post is quite possibly one of the least accurate posts I HAVE EVER SEEN on this blog.

John, I respectfully suggest you do some research on this topic! This is a Democratic talking point and it is an OUTRIGHT LIE.

The line item on the actual Federal Budget is "Food and Nutritional Assistance." Spending on this item has SKYROCKETED since 1962. All of my figures are taken directly from the US Budget and are rounded to the nearest million or billion dollars for simplicity.

1962. 275 Million dollar spent.
1970. 960 Million dollars spent.
1980. 13 Billion dollar spent.
1990. 21 Billion dollars spent.
2000. 28 Billion dollars spent.
2001. 29 Billion dollars spent.
2002. 33 Billion dollars spent.
2003. 37 Billion dollars spent.
2004. 41 Billion dollars spent.
2005. 48 Billion dollars spent.
2006. 51 Billion dollars spent.

The largest annual increase in the programs long history occurred from 2004 to 2005; when Republicans were in control... The program grew by 17% that year...

The 2001 - 2006 Budgets are directly attributable to a Republican President, a Republican House, and a Republican Senate...

From 2001 - 2006 "Federal Food and Nutritional Assistance" grew by 76%!

How is this causing people to starve? We are spending more then ever before and The Republicans are growing the program faster then Bill Clinton did...

Please take a few minutes and go look at the actual budget of The United States. It is easy to check my numbers...

Look at it this way:
About 13% of Americans live below The Federal poverty line. If HALF of them are on food assistance then this would be 19.5 million people. This would mean that last year The Federal government spent $2615 PER PERSON in 2006 to help feed them.

Note this does NOT count any Federal programs that give these same people income that can be spent on food nor does it include State programs nor does it include private charities nor does it include the Earned Income Tax Credit...
There are MANY different Federal food assistance programs. Each program has their own mission, administrators, staff, and agenda. It is one of the most inefficient setups you could imagine.

President Bush is proposing that we ELIMINATE the ones that do the least good and take the money that they would have received and give it to the food assistance programs that perform better. This would eliminate some of the waste, fraud, abuse, and unneeded overhead...

It is a GOOD idea.

I have ranted long enough...

I hope that everyone who read this learned something...

John Good, sorry for the rant. I imagine you just copied this from some left leaning sight without looking into it yourself!

I hate it when I see "talking points" that are this inaccurate.

Mike Sylvester

With Republicans like Mitch Daniels who needs Democrats?

Mitch Daniels is at it again...

In his first year he wanted to levy a "temporary" 1% additional income tax on Hoosier families making over $100,000 per year. He failed.

In his second year he levied a new tax on the sale of fireworks.

In his second year he TRIED to raise cigarette taxes; but, failed.

In his third year he is going to try to raise cigarette taxes again. He wants to raise them by 25 or 50 cents a pack...

Did you know that Indiana is projected to receive 457.7 million dollars in revenue this year from cigarette taxes and from the tobacco companies for the settlement of the lawsuit the States brought against the tobacco companies?

Indiana will spend a total of 10.8 million dollars in that same period on efforts to get Hoosiers to stop smoking! Indiana will SAVE zero dollars of this revenue to pay for the future healthcare costs of smokers...

The CDC (Center for Disease Control) recommends Indiana spend between 34.8 and 95.8 million dollars in that same period to get Hoosiers to stop smoking...

You can read the full report at:
<http://www.tobaccofreekids.org/reports/settlements/>

For many years Indiana has been taxing cigarettes and taking the money it has received from the tobacco companies and using that money to fund various programs all over Indiana that have nothing to do with health...

So Governor Mitch Daniels (Republican) wants to raise the cigarette tax and use that money for various things. If he gets a 50 cent per pack increase he wants to:
1. Fund health insurance for 200,000 low income Hoosiers.
2. Spend an additional 24 million per year to get Hoosiers to stop smoking.
3. Earmark 11 million dollars to expand access to vaccinations for children under age 2.

What is Mitch Daniels smoking in his spare time in the Governors office?

I would have NO PROBLEM if he raised the cigarette tax and put 100% of the money from that tax into a fund to help Indiana pay for the future health costs of those who smoke. That makes sense...

It makes sense to me that those who smoke should be the ones to pay for the health effects of their own habit...

Taking money from smokers and using it to support programs that have NOTHING to do with smoking makes no sense and is just another income redistribution plan...

I bet AWB, Andrew Kaduk, and Tim Zank are all proud that they voted for Mitch Daniels...

Good grief...

It looks like Mitch Daniels is going to create an Indiana health insurance plan for low income Hoosiers AND push for all day Kindergarten... Is he a Republican or a Socialist?

Mike Sylvester

Sunday, November 19, 2006

LPAC Meeting

The next meeting of the Libertarian Party of Allen County will be held at:

Munchie's Emporium & Mad Anthony Brewery ( back room) 1109 Taylor and Broadway

The usiness meeting starts at 8 PM on Monday, November 20th!

I will see you there!

Mike Sylvester

Colts go down in game 10

Another ugly game and this time the Colts do not come out on top...

I really disliked the Colts play calling in the 4th Quarter...

Mike Sylvester

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Poll about the next two years

Please vote in my new poll. You may vote ONCE per day!

The Republicans and Democrats have not got off to a very good start since the election.

On the Democratic side Nancy Pelosi tried to convince Democrats to vote for a John Murtha for the #2 position in The House. Nancy Pelosi promised to "Drain the swamp in Washington" and to "run the most ethical Congress in history." John Murtha:
Was involved in the ABSCAM scandal in the 1980's
Has been in office far too long
Is ranked as being one of the 25 most corrupt elected officials by a DEMOCRATIC watchdog
group (This group lists 21 Reps and 4 Dems)
Steered millions of dollars to companies that his brother is a lobbyist for
Is proud of his penchant for wasteful earmarks
Recently said that the "ethics reform bill" the Democrats are considering is "crap."

Luckily the crook was defeated soundly by the Democrats. Not a good start for Nancy Pelosi.

Not to be outdone The Republican Senate had its own leadership election. The crooked candidate in that election was Trent Lott. Trent Lott is VERY similar to John Murtha.
Has been in office for 33 years
He has been implicated in corruption and scandals
Is proud of his penchant for wasteful earmarks
Is against ethics reforms.

Unfortunately for The Republicans Trent Lott won by one vote. This is a strong indication that The Republicans still do not understand why they lost this election. Republican corruption was a large part of the reason why The Democrats won... This seems to have escaped The Republicans.

Then the Republicans had a leadership election in the House. The House has been Republican for 12 years. The Republicans had two reformers (Mike Pence and John Shadegg) running against the incumbents. Both reformers have great pasts, are against wasteful spending, and are strong, small government conservatives. Unfortunately for small government Republicans the reformers were crushed and the Republicans re-elected their old leaders.

I know that this has Republican Tim Zank VERY discouraged. It is OBVIOUS that The Republicans learned nothing from their defeat...

I think it is time for small government Republicans to become Libertarians...

Mike Sylvester

Friday, November 17, 2006

Steve Shine in the spotlight, again...

Steve Shine and The Allen County GOP held a large "ethics seminar" this year to help ensure that our local elected officials behave in an "ethical" manner.

It seems that The Indiana State Police are investigating a 911 call from Steve Shine's house last week.

I have NO IDEA what is going on with this...

You can learn more at:
<http://allencountydemocrats.typepad.com/>

A lot of people have asked me what I think about corruption in the Republican Party in the last few months. Many are surprised by my answer.

There are corrupt Republicans, Democrats, Libertarians, Evangelicals, Priests, Nuns, lawyers, accountants, police officers, etc. There are extremely honest Republicans, Democrats, Libertarians, Evangelicals, Priests, Nuns, lawyers, accountants, police officers, etc.

I think that power corrupts. The Republican Party has had a lot of power recently and some of their members have behaved in a very corrupt manner.

The 2006 Election removed many of them from power. That is what is supposed to happen.

The ONLY way to fix this is to make government as transparent as possible. Democrats and Republicans have fought this for years and years. Citizens need to do EVERYTHING they can to ensure our government is transparent.

In the past Reporters could be counted on to dig for corruption and to reveal corruption to the voters. Reporters as a whole are doing less of this in the last few years and that is too bad. Bloggers have taken a very active role in this function in the last couple of years.

I think that the rampant Republican corruption in the last few years has hurt The Republican Party and that you will see fewer and fewer Republicans claim to be part of a Party that has more morals and values then those members of other political Parties.

I think EVERY corrupt official should be "booted" out of office.

I also think that we need term limits!

Mike Sylvester

A great Fort Wayne service provided by the St Joe Fire Department

I grew up over by Georgetown Square. The St. Joseph Fire Department has always been an outstanding Fire Department that performs their job very well. The St. Joseph Fire Department is mostly volunteer and gets nowhere near the funding of The Fort Wayne Fire Department.

The St. Joseph Fire Department installs child safety seats in cars and they adjust car seats that are already installed in cars so that they properly fit children. They do this for free.

This is a great service and I commend the St. Joseph Fire Department for offering this service. They are the only local Fire Department to offer this service.

I have used this service a couple of times and I am impressed with it.

It often seems to me like I always discuss the negative on this blog. I would like to discuss more positive items!

Mike Sylvester

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Democrats dodge a bullet today

The Democratic House elected new leaders today.

Nancy Pelosi was elected as their Speaker; no one ran against her.

Nancy Pelosi broke with common practice and common sense and tried to get her friend John Murtha elected (This sounds almost Bush-like).

Murtha would have been a terrible choice due to his:
Corrupt background (ABSCAM and directing pork to his brother)
Penchant for earmarks and pork barrel spending

Note the Democrats promised to clean up Washington... This would have been a terrible decision...

Luckily for Democrats everywhere common sense won out and The Dems elected Moderate Steny Hoyer by a resounding vote of 149 to 86.

Nancy Pelosi should have known better and this is a discouraging sign for those who were hoping she would work to clean Washington up...

Mike Sylvester

Belmont California takes away private property rights

Belmont Claifornia has banned smoking in their entire town with ONE exception. You are allowed to smoke on your own property if you own a single, detached house. Otherwise no smoking.

You cannot smoke outside.

You cannot smoke in a duplex that you own...

This is absurd and is a sign of things to come...

Big government is on the move...

Vote Libertarian...

Mike Sylvester

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

25 of 49 Senate Republicans are some of the dumbest Republicans in the United States

This is depressing to me on MANY levels.

The Republican Senate has elected Trent Lott to be the #2 Republican in the Senate.

According to the exit polls in the election last week the number one issue on voters minds was CORRUPTION.

Another important issue was out of control Federal spending and earmarks.

So the Republicans elect Trent Lott...

This proves to me that The Republican Party is lost.

Here are some interesting facts about Trent Lott:

He is entering his 33rd year in The Senate

He is widely considered to be one of the most corrupt elected officials in Washington DC

He thinks that earmarks are important and he defends them as being necessary.

Read more about Trent Lott from Conservative Bloggers:

NationalReviewOnline
<http://corner.nationalreview.com/post/?q=MzE5YmM0OTBkMWRhNzRmY2Y1ZDRlYTJkMGQ1NTg5NTY=>

Hugh Hewitt, a blog at Townhall.com
<http://hughhewitt.townhall.com/g/01ff462c-e694-4a1a-907d-572e61833298>

Local blogger Tim Zank has an inspired post about this over at Just for the Record:
<http://just4therecordbooks.blogspot.com/2006/11/stupidity-knows-no-party-affiliation.html>

It is obvious that Senate Republicans have learned NOTHING from the last election.

It is ANOTHER sad day for The Republican Party

Mike Sylvester



Libertarians on Fort Wayne Public Access Thursday night!

Mike Sylvester will be tomorrow night's guest. Please watch on Cable Channel #57 from 7PM - 8PM.

The telephone number to call in is 422 - 8708.

Please call in and lets talk!

Mike Sylvester

Jeff Pruitt and his thought on my 22 Campaign predictions

Jeff sent in his comments last week and I am just now getting around to posting them. I want to thank Jeff for taking the time to send me his input.

I will be posting Andrew kaduk and Tim Zank's comments tomorrow.

I will at some point combine them all into one neatly written post so you can see all of our predictions...

Jeff Pruitt thinks:

1.
I don’t think the Fairness Doctrine is fair and I don’t think it has enough support on a party level to be reintroduced. Media is changing rapidly and although traditional media consolidation is a problem in my opinion, the Fairness Doctrine would only apply to radio. I think the FCC already has plans in place to promote more low power FM radio and it has bipartisan support from liberals to evangelical republicans.

2.
There will most certainly be hearings on a number of issues as there should be. I just don’t see impeachment getting any real traction unless the investigations lead to something so devastating that they have no choice. I do not think this will happen.

3.
I think the Democrats will support President Bush’s comprehensive immigration reform. I’m not sure what will happen to the millions of illegal aliens already here. The big sticking point I see is a guest-worker program. I don’t support this and I don’t believe a majority of Democrats do either – look to Germany and its permanent underclass of Turkish guest workers if you want to see what a failure this could become.

4.
There will be a major shift in our Iraq policy. That war ends in 2008 because no future president will want anything to do w/ it. In the meantime the question is – can the place be salvaged in the next two years? I think the answer is no and I would expect to see the Baker commission release a plan that will ultimately be acceptable to the Democrats. It will include bringing Iran and Syria into diplomatic talks, moving our troops into more friendly areas (Kurdistan) and advisory roles. It will also put more pressure on the local Iraqi government to deal w/ Al Sadr and the militias.

5. John Bolton is toast. He’s a terrible diplomat and he doesn’t believe in the effectiveness of the UN in the first place. I believe the voters most certainly wanted change in our foreign policy – this includes Bolton. If the President wanted to show a sign of bipartisanship then he could ask Dick Holbrooke to take the post. Holbrooke is just as fierce as Bolton but his is well-respected around the world – even by the President.

6.
First off, running huge deficits is the same as raising taxes – it’s just deferred. I believe the Democrats will roll back some of the Bush tax cuts but not the ones that affect the middle class. I think they will keep the child tax credit (maybe increase it), raise the AMT level, and eliminate taxes on the poorest earners. My guess is that most people/families earning under $200k will not be affected and some will see their taxes decrease.

7.
I am pro-estate tax as is the majority of the Democratic party. Estate tax repeal is dead. They will not raise the threshold for this tax and they might not let it roll back to 0% in 2010. However, they might just sit on this one (i.e. not let it come to the floor for debate) until after the 2008 elections.

8.
They will most certainly raise the minimum wage and it will probably be the first piece of legislation passed.

9.
I think the debt will be significantly reduced from where it is today but probably not eliminated in 2 years.

10.
I’m hopeful that progress can be made in this area but I’m not willing to go out on that limb. I think the solutions are politically messy for everyone involved and that will continue to be the biggest stumbling block.

11.
I think Social Security reform can happen if the President ends the ridiculous idea of private accounts which even HE admits does absolutely nothing for the solvency problem. I think this one’s in the president’s court. I think he will eventually see this as a possible positive light on his legacy and a deal will be struck. How far this deal goes to solving the problem is another question.

12.
I’m not sure what will happen here either. I think they will put together some piecemeal things they may or may not help – small business pooling will be one of them. However, they cannot get anything major past this President and I think they know that. I just want the debate started again and I think they will most certainly accomplish that.

13.
They will do this immediately – probably right after the minimum wage hike.

14.
They will keep this promise

15.
I don’t understand the arbitrary value selected – one half. Why shouldn’t student loan interest rates float like all other loans? The Republicans set them arbitrarily high as a payback to their private student loan contractors and now the Democrats are doing the opposite. I had student loans and I was very appreciative of that opportunity. I think they should go back to how they were before the Republicans screwed them up.

16.
I think they WILL do this and they will also pass a bill allowing the reimportation of prescription drugs. These are both good ideas and it will lower prices on some drugs

17.
I believe they will now have the votes to override the president’s veto on this and it’s a great idea – some things are too important not to have unified federal effort for.

18.
They WILL reinstate the rule that forces pay-as-you-go budgeting.

19.
They will definitely end the oil companies’ subsidies or they will strike a deal to keep them but be used specifically for new energy research. I’m not sure which is more likely – probably the latter.

20.
They will do things to decrease our foreign oil dependence but we won’t be there in two years. More wind energy investment, clean coal, and raising of CAFÉ standards will all probably happen. I think the party could really leverage the president’s desire to drill in ANWAR in exchange for something big – I would not be against that.

21.
I believe they will end most of the parliamentary tricks that have been used by the Republicans although unfortunately there will still be a few. Also, Harry Reid has already agreed to allow the press into the conference committees between the House and Senate – something the republicans refused to do. I would expect many small things like this.

22.
Jefferson will lose his election bid. He will get zero support from the party establishment although they won’t actively campaign against him (they should).

United States Health Care system is failing a little more each year

I am focused on health care this week for several reasons...

My father died of cancer eight years ago. I helped my mother sort out his medical bills and it was terrible...

My mother fell down her stairs this year and we are dealing with her medical bills now. Between my mother and I we have spent 30 hours trying to sort out her medical bills and we are no where near done yet...

I am not sure how to fix our health care system. I do know that it is broken and that it is going to get much worse.

My main fear is that Democrats and Republicans will either ignore the problem or will try to make "minor adjustments" in an attempt to fix a system that is broken. Minor adjustments will NOT fix the problem.

Here are some more statistics for you:

Most sources say that between 25% and 31% of the total cost of health care is PAPERWORK.

According to Milliman Inc, in 2005 the average family on a PPO plan spent a total of $12,214 on health care. This includes out of pocket expenses. This does NOT count the amount of time spent dealing with bills, etc.

Health care spending amounted to:
1970 7% of the total economy
2006 16% of the total economy
2015 20% of the total economy

Here are some of the problems of this health care crisis:

The Government spends ABOUT 1/2 of the total cost and this will contribute to increasing the national debt to unacceptable levels.

About 47 million Americans do not have health insurance, and this will increase because more and more people cannot afford it.

More and more employers will drop health insurance for current employees and retirees. This is already happening and the 2003 Medicare Drug plan has only accelerated this trend. This will cause the government to pay for even more of the burgeoning health care burden. This will also cause more and more jobs to go overseas.

I see only two solutions and I am not real happy with either one.

Unfortunately for America; neither Reps nor Dems have the courage to adopt either method...

Mike Sylvester

Representative John Murtha would be a disaster for Democrats

Read this from the Wall Street Journal:
<http://opinionjournal.com/diary/?id=110009248>

Things AGAINST John Murtha:
ABSCAM. There seems to be little doubt that he is corrupt.
He is considered an Earmark King. He loves pork barrel spending.
He is in the back pocket of lobbyists.
He steered large amount of money towards his lobbyist brother.

The Democrats need to clean up Washington and "Drain the swamp." That is part of the platform they ran on.

Making John Murtha the #2 man in Congress is "putting the fox in charge of the hen house."

Pat White may have been right the other day and I may have been wrong.

I did agree with him that The Democrats would not get rid of the far left wing kooks and that those same far left wing kooks would in fact lead most of the committees in Congress... I never thought they might elect new kooks...

This would be a disaster for The Democratic Party.

Note that my reasons have NOTHING to do with the War in Iraq.

Mike Sylvester

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Healthcare crisis looms

Everyone in the US needs to remember that the first step in fixing a problem is to admit that you have a problem.

We have a large problem.

The title of this post says it all! Everyone knows that we have a huge problem in the cost of healthcare in The United States.

I hope this will put it into perspective for you:

Healthcare costs are rising 8 - 10% per year and are projected to rise at that rate through 2010.

For 2005 the cost of a comprehensive healthcare plan was $11,480 for a family of 4 for one year.

The United States spends 4 and 1/2 times as much on healthcare as on our military.

Since 2001 the Healthcare sector has added 1.7 million new employees. The rest of the private sector added a net of zero jobs.

Breakdown of healthcare spending by income:
The richest 5% of Americans account for 55% of the healthcare spending
The poorest 50% of Americans account for 3% of the healthcare spending

The United States currently spends 16% of the entire National GDP on healthcare. This will grow to 20% by 2015. The United States spends the HIGHEST percentage of GDP in the world on healthcare. 2nd and 3rd are Germany and Switzerland at 11% of GDP. In relative terms, we spend 1.5 times as much as the next most expensive country per capita on healthcare. Also please remember that EVERYONE in Germany and Switzerland have free healthcare of some sort.

Almost 47 million Americans do not have health insurance.

Disaster is approaching. This is another crisis that will harm my kids and grandkids because NO ONE is willing to fix the problem today.

Please remember the first step to fixing a problem is to realize that you have a problem; we have a problem...

Nothing that our government is currently considering will fix the massive and inefficient healthcare system in place in The US. I am not sure if the current system can ever be fixed.

I think there are a lot of problems with the current system and I am not sure how we can fix them. The problems I see include:

1. We added 1.7 million health care jobs. These people have to make a living and it comes from those of us getting healthcare. Healthcare jobs tend to be very high paying and have great benefits.

2. The insurance companies have helped create a system that is inefficient and makes consumers not pay attention to what they are charged since "my insurance is paying for it."

3. The government got into healthcare and added yet another layer of paperwork and waste to the entire system.

This problem is not going to go away.

It is going to get worse...

Stand by...

Mike Sylvester

Kevin Knuth, Allen County Democratic Chair, weighs in on my Post Election predictions

I want to thank Kevin for letting us know what he thinks of my 22 predictions!

Kevin sent them a few days ago, I just got around to posting them!

From Kevin Knuth:

1. I do not think that the Democrats will reinstitute the fairness doctrine- but I wish they would. I truly believe that the constant bombardment of right wing whackos has divided our country and prohibits us from having serious discussions about the issues.

2. The Dems will NOT impeach Bush. He is more valuable as a lame duck who is being investigated for several things.

3.Tossup- it depends on how you define Amnesty. I think they will make everyone go through some type of process, most likely make them pay for it themselves....that is not Amnesty.

4. We will be out of Iraq before the next Presidential election.

5. I think Bolton is safe.

6. Tax cuts for the wealthy will be gone- poor and middle class will still have them.

7. I think you will see estate taxes for estates worth $3 million or more.

8. Minimum wage will be increased.

9. Dems will not make progress on the National Debt- but I do suspect a balanced budget will happen next year.

10. I expect unfunded liabilities to decrease.

11. Social Security can be fixed- and you will hear Democrats talking about it a lot.

12. I think that Healthcare needs to be "fixed" but that again depends on your definition. I suspect you will see lower drug costs, as well as a chance to "pool" uninsured workers. I suspect it will have to be subsidized by the government, but will also require the end user to pay part of it.

13 through 20- These will happen- but I suspect that it will take more than 100 hours! I think she meant to say that they would introduce legislation or begin subcommittees to work on these matters within the first 100 hours.

Monday, November 13, 2006

More on Freedom of Speech and "discussing" Child Molesters

It looks like AWB is back in service at:
<http://www.turkette.com/>

He has a copy of an email he received from these people who want the released sexual predators to have more rights then parents.

One part of this email refers to me, imagine that...

According to the email: "And responders are also guilty of hate:"

The person gives two examples that concern comments I left on FortWayneNews.com:

"I think he should be given a speedy trial. I think if he is convicted of a second capital offense, by a second jury, then he should be sentenced to death. I think he should spend a maximum of one year on death row and be allowed ONE APPEAL. If this appeal fails he should be immediately killed.
Mike Sylvester
Gun toting Libertarian"

The portions of this that the person sending the email takes exception to are in bold.

Believe me, I 100% stand behind the above statement and it is not hate speech. I still feel that EVERYONE who is convicted of two separate capital crimes by two separate juries should be sentenced to death. They should spend a maximum of one year on death row. If this appeal fails they should be killed... That is my opinion and I am entitled to it!

Note I feel that way whether the crimes are sex crimes or any other crimes... I think this should apply to all capital crimes.

Yep, that is EXACTLY how I feel...

I do not think this is "hate speech." It is my opinion on how all people who convict two separate capital crimes should be handled...

My second comment is not left in context so I am not 100% sure what I was referring to:

"I still have a pistol and I still volunteer to help our failing legal system...
Mike Sylvester"

I certainly still stand by this comment as well. I do have a pistol and I am willing to help our failing legal system. Here are some ways I would be happy to help our failing legal system with my pistol:

1. If anyone breaks into my house and threatens anyone in my family I will put my pistol to
good use.
2. If a uniformed police officer is in my neighborhood and is in a physical confrontation with
criminals I will be happy to head on outside and help said police officer defend himself with
said pistol.
3. If my neighbors or innocent civilians are being threatened or harmed by criminals I will be
happy to put said pistol to good use.

If more Americans were willing to get involved and actively stop crimes as they occur America would be a much better place.

If anyone thinks that my comments are filled with "hate" or inappropriate please feel free to NOT COME BACK TO MY BLOG.

Mike Sylvester

Gun toting Libertarian



Chinese submarine stalks US warships

The Drudge Report linked to an article in the Washington Times entitled "China sub stalked U.S. fleet."

The article is here:
<http://www.washtimes.com/national/20061113-121539-3317r.htm>

This article demonstrates how little most journalists know about the military in general and the submarine fleet in particular.

The point of a submarine is to "sneak up" on enemy warships and sink them. It is not more complicated then that.

EVERY navy practices having their submarines "Sneak up" on their own warships, those of allies, and those of potential enemies.

I was stationed on the USS Pintado from the end of 1991 - early 1995. We spent a GREAT deal of time "sneaking up" on various ships...

We spent a lot of time "sneaking up" on other United States Navy ships. We practiced with the various countries that sent warships each year to Hawaii for large wargames, when on an exercise in South America we played wargames with British, French, Brazillian, Columbian, Peruvian, and Argentinean vessels. We of course played cat and mouse with Russian vessels.

That is how you practice and learn...

Duh...

There are some parts of the article that bring up good points about how we are allowing the Chinese to spy on us and not reciprocating; however, the ignorance about how submarines operate is appalling...

Mike Sylvester

AWB and the "nannies" trying to shut down his blog

I am sick and tired of legal groups trying to give convicted CRIMINALS who have served their sentences more rights then parents who want to protect their children...

I still cannot believe that AWB had his blog shut down because some convicted sex offenders took offense to his blog and thought he was threatening them. This is absurd and illustrates some of the things that have gone wrong with this country.

I am glad that Michael Reese had the courage to let us know who was responsible for this outrageous violation of freedom of speech. Michael Reese you should be 100% ashamed of your behavior.

Michael Reese claims that few sex offenders commit sex crimes after they are released from prison.

After I questioned this statistic he did the right thing and posted his source.

Please look for yourself:
http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/abstract/rsorp94.htm

If this report (From the US Dept of Justice) is accurate then the following was true when this study was conducted on prisoners released in 1994:
1. 43% of these released sex offenders were re-arrested within just three years for various
crimes.
2. 5.3% of the sex offenders that were released were arrested for committing more sex crimes.
3. 68% of non sex offenders released from prison were re-arrested within 3 years for various
crimes.
4. 1.3% of the non sexoffenders released from prison were arrested for committing sex crimes.
MOST DISTURBING TO ME
5. The average sex offender was sentenced to 8 years and served only 3 and 1/2 years.
6. The average CHILD MOLESTER was sentenced to 7 years and served only 3 years.

This helps illustrate some of the things wrong with America:
The recidivism rate is far too high.
Prisoners serve on average less then HALF of their sentence.

WE NEED TO BUILD MORE PRISONS AND WE NEED TO STOP PUTTING PEOPLE IN JAIL FOR NON VIOLENT CRIMES THAT HURT NO ONE OTHER THEN THE PERSON COMMITTING THE CRIME.

Realize that there are numerous studies out about this. Check this one out:
<http://www.csom.org/pubs/recidsexof.html>

According to this survey only 32% of sexual assaults against persons aged 12 years or odler are reported. This would make you think that a large number of sex offenders released from prison keep committing sex crimes and do not get caught. Do not let that bother you Michael Reese...

According to this survey the rate of arrests for convicted sex offenders is:
Within one year, 6%
Within 5 years, 19%
Within 10 years, 30%
Within 25 years, 52%
Do not let this bother you either Michael Reese.

More statistics from The Department of Justice:
<http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/crimoff.htm>

Look under "Sex Offenders"
The median age of sexual assault victims is less then 13 years old.
19% of those arrested for sexual assault were on probation or parole when they were arrested.
Do not let this bother you Michael Reese...

I could go on and on and on...

Mike Sylvester
Concerned parent of two wonderful children

P.S. Michael Reese please keep in mind that criminals do not have more rights then citizens on my personal property. If I ever see one of the "sex offenders" on AWB's blog in the house I own and in which my children reside and if I feel they are a danger to my children, my wife, or myself; I will use whatever force I think necessary to defend my family up to and including using my 40 caliber hand gun.

Freedom of Speech in Fort Wayne

AWB has a post about the shutdown of his Fort Wayne blog FortWayneNews.com.

<http://www.turkette.com/>

AWB says it well in his post and you should read it.

Mike Sylvester

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Freedom of Speech violated in Fort Wayne; again

AWB (His online alias) runs a blog in Fort Wayne known as FortWayneNews.com. AWB runs a very biased Republican blog that I read EVERY day.

I enjoy AWB's blog and he does a great job with his blog.

One of the things he does is highlight people who have past convictions as sexual predators. He copies information from various publicly accessible websites onto his blog.

This serves as a warning and is a public servers he provides for his readers...

His blog has been shut down because "SOMEONE" decided to contact his provider and his provider shot down his blog.

This is garbage.

This is a violation of his Freedom of Speech.

There are too many groups in this country who want criminals and past criminals to have more rights then the rest of us...

You can read a lot more about this violation of Free Speech at:
<http://type-that.blogspot.com/2006/11/holy-wow.html>

AWB posts information about people who have been convicted of a variety of crimes; often he posts about people who have been convicted of committing various sex crimes.

I have NO PITY for the criminals that AWB is posting about. I am sick and tired of criminals and past criminals having more rights then the rest of us. Give be a break. This is ridiculous...

I will have to see what happens with AWB. I think I may start posting information about local past sexual predators on my blog as a public service...

Mike Sylvester

We went to see the Colts play today

The wife and I went down and watched the game today and it was ugly.

The Colts won; but, both teams looked pretty mad.

Mike Sylvester

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Economics lesson about healthcare

My mother went to the Docter yesterday. She has been seeing this Docter for many years...

She had to wait for 90 minutes because her Doctor was running late.

She ended up spending 5 minutes with a nurse and then another 5 minutes with the Doctor. No tests were taken and nothing special happened.

The total bill was $120.

That is what is wrong with the medical system in this country.

This bill will end up being paid by Medicare and by my mother's supplemental insurance policy.

Consumers have been taken out of the loop. There is no incentive to argue about the bill or to shop around since Medicare and supplemental insurance will pay for it...

Economics 101...

Any questions?

Mike Sylvester

Friday, November 10, 2006

Stan Matuska weighs in on my Post 2006 Election Predictions!

Stan sent me his opinions on my 22 points! Thanks Stan. After reading your comments you are truly part Dem and part Libertarian!

Kevin Knuth, The Allen County Democratic chair has sent me his opinions and they will be posted soon!

I hope more of your send me your opinions on my 22 points; I am especially interested in some Republicans and Conservative views.

Several people have asked me what I think will happen in the next few months. I am going to give you my opinion on how I think things will go in the next couple of years.

First of all, I think a lot will get done. The Republicans are scared, Bush has surrendered, and The Republicans have already started the finger pointing.

Not everything that is accomplished will be good... I think the Republicans will become conservatives again. This would be a good thing overall... I hope Mike Pence becomes the Minority Leader in The House for obvious reasons...

The Democrats are going to have their own battles as well... If they are smart they will realize that they need to accomplish a lot if they want to win again in 2008. If they are smart they will also realize that they have to move to the right and get some of the "kooks" out of leadership positions... John Kerry and Ted Kennedy come to mind... I expect The Democrats to race towards the center starting today.

Mike Sylvester's comments are in black. Whether or not Mike Sylvester thinks that my prediction SHOULD occur is in red.

Stan Matuska's thoughts are in purple

1. Pat White and most conservative talk radio hosts seem to think the Democrats will kill talk radio. This is just right wing paranoia. It will not happen. If it does happen I will have to call in to Pat White and tell him I was wrong; he and I have argued this on the air several times... I would be VERY ANGRY if the Dems try to do this. I am against re-instituting The Fairness Doctrine; it would be a violation of Free Speech.

I don't see this happening, especially within the next two years.

2. Pat White and most conservative talk radio hosts seem to think that the Dems will try to impeach Bush. If the Dems try to do this they will regret it... I do not buy this either, the Democrats are not going to do this. I am against impeaching Bush.

I am not against impeaching Bush, but I don't think it will happen, and I don't think it will serve America best. He's out in 2 years, and there is too much work to be done to get bogged down with an impeachment process. The Democratic Congress will work with Bush instead of against him.

3. Amnesty to illegal aliens. This would be terrible for America and wrong. If the Dems make this mistake they will be made to regret it in 2008. There is little doubt in my mind that Bush and The Democrats will grant Amnesty and it will make me angry. I am against Amnesty.

I am against amnesty, but I believe that is exactly what is going to happen (no matter how they spin the name, it will still be amnesty). I want to stop paying for illegals, and I want people to go to jail if they hire illegals, and I want anybody who is allowed to stay to pay their fair share of taxes.

4. Pat White and many people think the Dems will immediately draw down troop levels in Iraq. They are wrong and this will be fun to watch. The left wing bloggers and peace wing of the Democratic party is about to get into a big fight with the mainstream Democrats and it will be an ugly fight. It will be an ugly fight because we are not going to do ANYTHING new in Iraq. Even with a new Defense Secretary our policy in Iraq will not significantly change. The media will cover the war differently; but, nothing will change. Not at all. This is really going to make a lot of Democrats like our own Robert Rouse VERY ANGRY at the Dems. We have 133,000 troops in Iraq right now; expect that to continue. We will still have at least 120,000 troops in Iraq in one year.

We will have no more than 60,000 troops in Iraq one year from now. I can't see us maintaining the current levels (or more) in the course of another year. Iraqi's will have to start policing one/few city(s) at a time without our soldiers to get the ball rolling. I don't believe we can be out of Iraq in a year. I do believe there will be some countries standing up to assist which may still be 133,000 troops, but not all ours.

5. Pat White and many others think the Dems will go after John Bolton in The United Nations. I am not as sure about this one. My guess is that there will be a half hearted effort to get rid of John Bolton. If Bush caves in John Bolton may go... I think he will stay. I think John Bolton should stay, he has done a good job. Overall The United Nations is a huge waste of taxpayer money...

I think John Bolton will stay. If he were a problem, we probably would have heard something by now. I think the UN needs to either disband or grow some balls.

6. I have heard a lot about The Dems repealing all of Bush's tax cuts. I do NOT think the Dems will repeal them all; however, they will allow some of them to retire via their sunset provisions. My guess is that those geared towards the middle class and the poor will remain and that those geared towards the wealthy will be allowed to expire. Unfortunately I think the Dems will make the tax code even more complicated. I think they will allow the tax cuts for the wealthy expire. I think the tax code should be scrapped and simplified.

I believe that taxes will go up for the wealthy, and the tax cuts for the middle class with time limits will not be extended beyond their predetermined expiration date; hence it will feel like a tax increase for the middle class.

7. I have heard a lot about the Dems allowing the estate taxes to come back. This is definitely not true. The Dems are not going to mess with the estate taxes too much. They MAY even raise the threshold to around 5 million dollars for an estate. I think that the Dems will basically leave The Estate tax alone. I think estate taxes are evil and should be eliminated entirely.

(Ditto).

8. The Dems will increase the minimum wage on the Federal level. This is a given and Bush will not Veto it. Bush babbled about making sure it would not effect small business in his Press Conference; so I am afraid this may become another overly complicated bill. The Dems will increase the minimum wage. I am against this because I understand economics and The Constitution. The Federal minimum wage should be abolished and each State should set their own.

I believe the minimum wage will be increased, and sooner, rather than later. I would prefer all states do this on their own, but that's not going to happen, so the government will have to do it.

9. The Dems will make no real progress on the Federal Debt no matter what they promise. The Federal Debt was about 8.5 trillion dollars in 2006 at the end of the fiscal year (End of September). Over the last six years the Federal Debt has increased ABOUT 400 billion dollars each year. I expect this to continue. My guess is the Federal Debt will be 8.9 trillion dollars at the end of Sep 2007. I expect it to be 9.3 trillion dollars at the end of Sep 2008. I will be watching this very carefully along with Jeff Pruitt. Nancy Pelosi has made promises that I think she will break. The Dems will talk about fiscal responsibility and will not follow through with them. I am in favor of balancing the Federal Budget TODAY, not in five years.

I predict the Dems will hack away at the debt, and it will be less in two years than it is today.

10. The Dems will create even more unfunded Federal liabilities then we have today. I have posted a lot of information on our unfunded Federal liabilities. They are about 75 trillion dollars today. This is criminal. I expect them to continue to increase. The Dems will not touch this issue at all. I am in favor of eliminating all of our unfunded liabilities.

(Ditto).

11. The Dems will talk about protecting Social Security a lot. As of May of 2006 the unfunded liability of Social Security was 13.4 trillion dollars. (<http://www.bc.edu/centers/crr/issues/ib_46.pdf>) In other words, if we had 13.4 trillion dollars invested in US Treasury's in May then Social Security would be solvent; unfortunately, you need to read #9 above. We have NOT saved ANY money for Social Security. What this means is future generations are going to have to pay for the current generation and past generations, which is wrong. The Dems will talk about protecting social security and they will do NOTHING. Social Security needs to be fixed now. It should never have been allowed to have ANY unfunded liability. Note that it had an unfunded liability the day it was created. Social Security has to be re-structured.

The existing plan should remain for the people who have invested in it most of their lives. Basically it should die a slow death through normal attrition. I have heard many times that the government "borrows" from the SSA to pay for other things. If this is true, has the money ever been paid back into the SSA? What happens with the rest of the population is up for debate. There are many different savings plans (401k, IRA etc.) that are now available today that were not available for most of the older generation. How much are we spending on the war in Iraq that could have ben used to help fund social security? How much is needed to fund the SSA until it dies a natural death? My prediction is there will be discussions, but nothing will actually get done.

12. The Dems will talk about healthcare a whole lot. One of the largest Democratic talking points was the fact that 50 million American are uninsured as far as healthcare. I have NO IDEA what The Dems will do. They DO NOT have a plan to fix healthcare. I think they will push for more government involvement and they will throw more money at the problem. This will not work and where will the money come from. I have to think the Dems will try to get health insurance for more people and I have to think they will want the government to pay for it. Obviously I want to kick the government out of health care entirely.

I think the government will implement an idea that has been discussed recently (Lieberman?). They will form a plan where smaller companies and individuals can join as a single entity, making it cost effective to join. The government will wind up funding a portion of the costs.

The following items Nancy Pelosi promised to do within the 1st 100 hours and The Dems MUST accomplish to maintain ANY credibility.

13. "Put new rules in place to break the link between lobbyists and legislators." I love this idea; however, The Dems will NOT do this. They will completely blow this promise. I am in favor of this Democratic promise.

I believe they will keep this promise as an "attempt", but it will fail in the long term and go nowhere.

14. "Enact all recommendations of the 9/11 Commission." I am not sure about this one but I tend to favor it. I fully expect The Dems to keep this promise. I think I am in favor of this promise.

I fully expect The Dems to keep this promise.

15. "Cut interest rates on student loans in half." I am against this for obvious reasons. The Federal government needs to get out of Education entirely. The more money you throw at something the more expensive it gets. It is simple economics. If the Federal government cuts the interest rates in half on student loans that means they will pay the difference out of tax payer dollars. This will get expensive and make it harder to balance the budget. I think the Dems will keep this promise. This promise is a bad idea, we need less government involvement in education not more.

I didn't hear about this, but if Nancy said it, then I believe she will do it. Trust me, what is lost in interest can be gained many times over just by reducing a few entitlements and several thousand $100.00 hammers. I truly believe Nancy Pelosi can both create new entitlements AND reduce expenditures at the same time.

16. "Allow government to negotiate directly with drug companies for lower drug prices for Medicare patients." I think this is a great idea. I think it is going to be much harder then The Dems think. The drug companies are very powerful and control a lot of Republicans AND Democrats. This issue will be very important to The Dems and they need to keep this promise. I think the Dems will make a feeble effort to do this; however, they will NOT significantly lower drug prices. This promise is a GREAT idea.

(Ditto).

17. "Broaden the types of stem cell research allowed with Federal Funds." I have no problem with stem cell research; however, The Federal government is spending too much of my money as it is. The last thing we need is more government money being spent on a new program. I think the Dems will keep this promise. I have no problem with stem cell research, it should be funded privately or with money from the fifty states; it is not something The Federal government should be involved in.

As much as I am against yet another government funded project, I believe Federal funding for stem cell research would be money well spent. Again, we don't have to spend more, we have to spend smarter.

18. The Dems promised to "pay as you go." I do not understand why we EVER got away from "pay as you go." It makes sense and is most likely my largest problem with both Dems and Reps. They have mortgaged America. The Dems will NOT abide by "pay as you go." Obviously "pay as you go" should be the way it is.

How can the government "pay as you go" until you "pay as you went?" This isn't gonna happen.

19. "Eliminating corporate subsidies for oil companies." I am in favor of eliminating all Federal subsidies. The Dems will find this more complicated then they think; however, I think they will get this done. Federal subsidies should be eliminated...

Federal subsidies should be eliminated..., but without knowing the details behind each subsidy, I can't say with 100% confidence that they all should go away. I believe they will eliminate the subsidies for oil companies - and why are we subsidising them in the first place???

20. "We will energize America by achieving energy independence." I am in favor of this. It cannot happen in 100 hours and she should NEVER have said this. We are too reliant on foreign oil and we will be just as dependent in two years as we are today. The Dems will fail on this 100%. We need to work on energy dependence; however, neither Party has a plan that will work.

(Ditto).

The 2006 election was yesterday; Nancy Pelosi has already made some promises that we will look at.

21. "Nancy Pelosi promised to run the most ethical and honest administration in history." This is a promise I hope that she keeps; however, I do not think it is possible. This one will have to be graded over the next two years. I expect The Dems to keep using all of the legislative "tricks" both Parties have used for the last 50 years to continue. This promise will be broken, possibly by #20 below. This promise SHOULD be kept; but, they will not.

This promise will be kept. Notice she said "most ethical and honest" and not "totally ethical and honest". The Democrats may have won the House and Senate because of, among other things, ethical violations commited by the Republicans. I think the Democrats are vary wary not to cause any/many "ethical and honesty" violations.

22. "Nancy Pelosi made the promise in 19 above." Each and every Republican involved in a corruption scandal was defeated in the 2006 Election. Amazingly enough Democratic Congressman William J. Jefferson has not yet been defeated. In Louisiana you have to get at least 50% of the vote or participate in a run off election. Jefferson is still alive and will face off with a Democrat next month in the run off election. Jefferson is accused of accepting $400,000 in bribes by the FBI. The FBI took $90,000 from his freezer and has bribes on videotape. There is really no doubt that Jefferson is guilty. This will be one of The Democrats first tests. Nancy Pelosi promised to clean up Washington and Jefferson is where she needs to start. If she is serious about cleaning up Washington she should travel to Louisiana and back Jefferson's opponent. The National Democratic Party should pitch in a lot of money and destroy Jefferson in his election next month. I expect Jefferson to be defeated in December; however, I do not expect The National Democrats to ensure his defeat. Jefferson is scum and should have resigned...

(Ditto).

Mike Sylvester

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Predictions update

Yesterday I posted 22 predictions I have for the next couple of years. MANY of these will not be able to be graded for at least a few months.

A couple are shaping up already.

#2 on my list was my feeling that The Dems will NOT try to impeach Bush, at least not seriously... Howard Dean has again said that Bush will not be impeached... I am looking good on this one...

#5 on my list was about John Bolton. I said that I was not sure what would happen; but, I thought he would stay. This is looking unlikely. This is too bad because Bolton has done a good job.

#22 on my list concerned disgraced Democrat William Jefferson. I predicted that Jefferson will be defeated in his run-off election in December. I do not expect the natioanal Democrats to ensure his defeat like they should. That being said "Daily Kos" has setup a campaign to defeat Jefferson and is helping his opponent raise money. This is a big deal and Kos is doing the right thing...

Mike Sylvester

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Post 2006 Election Predictions

Several people have asked me what I think will happen in the next few months. I am going to give you my opinion on how I think things will go in the next couple of years.

Please send me your comments on each section and I will add them into the main post. I would like at least one Dem and one Rep to tell me what they think about each item. I will give each person a different color and we can revisit this in six months and see who was right.

In fact we could make it into a bet... Anyone who wants to bet a nice dinner on who is right please let me know. I will CRUSH you!

First of all, I think a lot will get done. The Republicans are scared, Bush has surrendered, and The Republicans have already started the finger pointing. Not everything that is accomplished will be good...

I think the Republicans will become conservatives again. This would be a good thing overall... I hope Mike Pence becomes the Minority Leader in The House for obvious reasons...

The Democrats are going to have their own battles as well... If they are smart they will realize that they need to accomplish a lot if they want to win again in 2008. If they are smart they will also realize that they have to move to the right and get some of the "kooks" out of leadership positions... John Kerry and Ted Kennedy come to mind... I expect The Democrats to race towards the center starting today.

1. Pat White and most conservative talk radio hosts seem to think the Democrats will kill talk radio. This is just right wing paranoia. It will not happen. If it does happen I will have to call in to Pat White and tell him I was wrong; he and I have argued this on the air several times... I would be VERY ANGRY if the Dems try to do this. I am against re-instituting The Fairness Doctrine; it would be a violation of Free Speech.

2. Pat White and most conservative talk radio hosts seem to think that the Dems will try to impeach Bush. If the Dems try to do this they will regret it... I do not buy this either, the Democrats are not going to do this. I am against impeaching Bush.

3. Amnesty to illegal aliens. This would be terrible for America and wrong. If the Dems make this mistake they will be made to regret it in 2008. There is little doubt in my mind that Bush and The Democrats will grant Amnesty and it will make me angry. I am against Amnesty.

4. Pat White and many people think the Dems will immediately draw down troop levels in Iraq. They are wrong and this will be fun to watch. The left wing bloggers and peace wing of the Democratic party is about to get into a big fight with the mainstream Democrats and it will be an ugly fight. It will be an ugly fight because we are not going to do ANYTHING new in Iraq. Even with a new Defense Secretary our policy in Iraq will not significantly change. The media will cover the war differently; but, nothing will change. Not at all. This is really going to make a lot of Democrats like our own Robert Rouse VERY ANGRY at the Dems. We have 133,000 troops in Iraq right now; expect that to continue. We will still have at least 120,000 troops in Iraq in one year.

5. Pat White and many others think the Dems will go after John Bolton in The United Nations. I am not as sure about this one. My guess is that there will be a half hearted effort to get rid of John Bolton. If Bush caves in John Bolton may go... I think he will stay. I think John Bolton should stay, he has done a good job. Overall The United Nations is a huge waste of taxpayer money...

6. I have heard a lot about The Dems repealing all of Bush's tax cuts. I do NOT think the Dems will repeal them all; however, they will allow some of them to retire via their sunset provisions. My guess is that those geared towards the middle class and the poor will remain and that those geared towards the wealthy will be allowed to expire. Unfortunately I think the Dems will make the tax code even more complicated. I think they will allow the tax cuts for the wealthy expire. I think the tax code should be scrapped and simplified.

7. I have heard a lot about the Dems allowing the estate taxes to come back. This is definitely not true. The Dems are not going to mess with the estate taxes too much. They MAY even raise the threshold to around 5 million dollars for an estate. I think that the Dems will basically leave The Estate tax alone. I think estate taxes are evil and should be eliminated entirely.

8. The Dems will increase the minimum wage on the Federal level. This is a given and Bush will not Veto it. Bush babbled about making sure it would not effect small business in his Press Conference; so I am afraid this may become another overly complicated bill The Dems will increase the minimum wage. I am against this because I understand economics and The Constitution. The Federal minimum wage should be abolished and each State should set their own.

9. The Dems will make no real progress on the Federal Debt no matter what they promise. The Federal Debt was about 8.5 trillion dollars in 2006 at the end of the fiscal year (End of September). Over the last six years the Federal Debt has increased ABOUT 400 billion dollars each year. I expect this to continue. My guess is the Federal Debt will be 8.9 trillion dollars at the end of Sep 2007. I expect it to be 9.3 trillion dollars at the end of Sep 2008. I will be watching this very carefully along with Jeff Pruitt. Nancy Pelosi has made promises that I think she will break. The Dems will talk about fiscal responsibility and will not follow through with them. I am in favor of balancing the Federal Budget TODAY, not in five years.

10. The Dems will create even more unfunded Federal liabilities then we have today. I have posted a lot of information on our unfunded Federal liabilities. They are about 75 trillion dollars today. This is criminal. I expect them to continue to increase. The Dems will not touch this issue at all. I am in favor of eliminating all of our unfunded liabilities.

11. The Dems will talk about protecting Social Security a lot. As of May of 2006 the unfunded liability of Social Security was 13.4 trillion dollars. (<http://www.bc.edu/centers/crr/issues/ib_46.pdf>) In other words, if we had 13.4 trillion dollars invested in US Treasury's in May then Social Security would be solvent; unfortunately, you need to read #9 above. We have NOT saved ANY money for Social Security. What this means is future generations are going to have to pay for the current generation and past generations, which is wrong. The Dems will talk about protecting social security and they will do NOTHING. Social Security needs to be fixed now. It should never have been allowed to have ANY unfunded liability. Note that it had an unfunded liability the day it was created.

12. The Dems will talk about healthcare a whole lot. One of the largest Democratic talking points was the fact that 50 million American are uninsured as far as healthcare. I have NO IDEA what The Dems will do. They DO NOT have a plan to fix healthcare. I think they will push for more government involvement and they will throw more money at the problem. This will not work and where will the money come from. I have to think the Dems will try to get health insurance for more people and I have to think they will want the government to pay for it. Obviously I want to kick the government out of health care entirely.

The following items Nancy Pelosi promised to do within the 1st 100 hours and The Dems MUST accomplish to maintain ANY credibility.

13. "Put new rules in place to break the link between lobbyists and legislators." I love this idea; however, The Dems will NOT do this. They will completely blow this promise. I am in favor of this Democratic promise.

14. "Enact all recommendations of the 9/11 Commission." I am not sure about this one but I tend to favor it. I fully expect The Dems to keep this promise. I think I am in favor of this promise.

15. "Cut interest rates on student loans in half." I am against this for obvious reasons. The Federal government needs to get out of Education entirely. The more money you throw at something the more expensive it gets. It is simple economics. If the Federal government cuts the interest rates in half on student loans that means they will pay the difference out of tax payer dollars. This will get expensive and make it harder to balance the budget. I think the Dems will keep this promise. This promise is a bad idea, we need less government involvement in education not more.

16. "Allow government to negotiate directly with drug companies for lower drug prices for Medicare patients." I think this is a great idea. I think it is going to be much harder then The Dems think. The drug companies are very powerful and control a lot of Republicans AND Democrats. This issue will be very important to The Dems and they need to keep this promise. I think the Dems will make a feeble effort to do this; however, they will NOT significantly lower drug prices. This promise is a GREAT idea.

17. "Broaden the types of stem cell research allowed with Federal Funds." I have no problem with stem cell research; however, The Federal government is spending too much of my money as it is. The last thing we need is more government money being spent on a new program. I think the Dems will keep this promise. I have no problem with stem cell research, it should be funded privately or with money from the fifty states; it is not something The Federal government should be involved in.

18. The Dems promised to "pay as you go." I do not understand why we EVER got away from "pay as you go." It makes sense and is most likely my largest problem with both Dems and Reps. They have mortgaged America. The Dems will NOT abide by "pay as you go." Obviously "pay as you go" should be the way it is.

19. "Eliminating corporate subsidies for oil companies." I am in favor of eliminating all Federal subsidies. The Dems will find this more complicated then they think; however, I think they will get this done. Federal subsidies should be eliminated...

20. "We will energize America by achieving energy independence." I am in favor of this. It cannot happen in 100 hours and she should NEVER have said this. We are too reliant on foreign oil and we will be just as dependent in two years as we are today. The Dems will fail on this 100%. We need to work on energy dependence; however, neither Party has a plan that will work.

The 2006 election was yesterday; Nancy Pelosi has already made some promises that we will look at.

21. "Nancy Pelosi promised to run the most ethical and honest administration in history." This is a promise I hope that she keeps; however, I do not think it is possible. This one will have to be graded over the next two years. I expect The Dems to keep using all of the legislative "tricks" both Parties have used for the last 50 years to continue. This promise will be broken, possibly by #20 below. This promise SHOULD be kept; but, they will not.

22. "Nancy Pelosi made the promise in 19 above." Each and every Republican involved in a corruption scandal was defeated in the 2006 Election. Amazingly enough Democratic Congressman William J. Jefferson has not yet been defeated. In Louisiana you have to get at least 50% of the vote or participate in a run off election. Jefferson is still alive and will face off with a Democrat next month in the run off election. Jefferson is accused of accepting $400,000 in bribes by the FBI. The FBI took $90,000 from his freezer and has bribes on videotape. There is really no doubt that Jefferson is guilty. This will be one of The Democrats first tests. Nancy Pelosi promised to clean up Washington and Jefferson is where she needs to start. If she is serious about cleaning up Washington she should travel to Louisiana and back Jefferson's opponent. The National Democratic Party should pitch in a lot of money and destroy Jefferson in his election next month. I expect Jefferson to be defeated in December; however, I do not expect The National Democrats to ensure his defeat. Jefferson is scum and should have resigned...

Please comment on this post.

We will revisit this after the first 100 hours and as the next two years progress!

Mike Sylvester

Rush Limbaugh admits he was tired of shilling for RINO's

Rush Limbaugh said several times today that he was tired of "carrying the water for Republicans when they pass bills that are not conservative and do not promote smaller government."

Rush also said that many Republicans have a hard time speaking and making their points clearly.

He called Republicans "cowardly as far as being conservatives."

Rush said he was tired of "Covering for The Republican Party."

Rush also said "It is not my job to make elected Republicans look good."

Rush says he feels "Liberated."

Wow...

This all started on the air right after President Bush "allowed" Donald Rumsfeld to resign and right after President Bush surrendered to the Democrats on many issues in a concession speech...

I have been mad at Rush Limbaugh for a long time. He has been a Republican for at least six years rather then a conservative. Rush Limbaugh has been defending President Bush and any number of RINO's (Republicans in Name Only) in the last few years including:
Making the Federal tax code nine million words long
Expanding the reach of Federal government into Education
Prescription drug entitlement for seniors
Sarbanes Oxley, this is the largest expansion of regulation in recent history
And the list goes on and on and on.

It is obvious that President Bush surrendering to The Democrats has really made Limbaugh angry...

This will be interesting to watch...

He also said he will NOT defend Republicans unless they are conservatives from now on...

Rush also said that "President Bush now wants to go back to Crawford Texas with a 68% approval rating rather then be conservative."

Rush next quoted an exit poll and stated that "by an 11% margin voters associated Republicans with large Government more then Democrats." Rush went on to explain this is due to the Prescription drug benefit and out of control Federal spending.

Rush then made somewhat of a pitch for Mike Pence as Speaker... Kind of...

In other words, Rush Limbaugh sounded AN AWFUL LOT LIKE MIKE SYLVESTER TODAY. In fact, it was a little disturbing. It has been MANY YEARS since I have agreed with Rush Limbaugh as much as I did today. A LONG TIME...

Actually I do not agree with Rush on this, he agrees with me...

Mike Sylvester

President Bush surrenders to Democrats and Rumsfeld resigns as Secretary of Defense

I am stunned.

I cannot believe what Bush just did...

For those of you who think Bush will stick with his principles no matter what, think again. He just let Rumsfeld resign and I am not sure what else to expect in the future.

President Bush basically said that since the Democrats won the election he is going to do what they want in many cases. This is a BAD thing. This reinforces my thoughts that he will not use his veto...

President Bush looks like he is concerned about poll numbers... It reminds me of Clinton to a point...

President Bush said the following:
1. He thinks he can find middle ground on the minimum wage. I would guess that he will NOT
veto the coming increase in the Federal minimum wage, which is BAD.
2. He thinks he can get comprehensive immigration reform with The Dems. I am sure he can.
Expect amnesty to be granted and for an open border to continue.

This Press Conference enforces one thing to me. President Bush does NOT know why The Republican party lost. They lost because they have become a large government Party who supports:
Expanding entitlement Programs (Prescription Drugs for seniors)
Expanding Government Regulations on Business (Sarbanes Oxley)
Expanding the role of The Federal Government in Education

Expect President Bush to expand government and regulation even more in his last two years then he did in the first six years...

The era of big government will continue because President Bush is not a conservative on domestic issues...

Mike Sylvester

Indiana Election Results, what they mean

The Indiana Election results have definitely sent shivers down the spines of the Republican Party and has invigorated the Democratic Party.

Indiana is a purple State. We are neither Dem or Rep. This should really scare Reps...

We have one Senator from each Party.

We have FIVE Democratic Congressmen and four Republicans.

The Reps hold all statewide offices by a small margin.

The Indiana Senate is Republican.

The Indiana House is Democratic.

Neither The Dems nor the Reps really control Indiana...

The next Indiana legislative session will be very interesting. Here is my prediction:

1. The number one priority should be making the approximately 300 million dollars of back payments that The State owes various groups. This will NOT happen. Neither Party is interested in paying our debts, they would rather waste our money.

2. All day Kindergarten is coming. We will spend all of the surplus and then some on this project. We will spend more and more on education and this will NOT fix our education system.

3. There is no doubt in my mind that the State will pass a bill that will allow local government to raise their own taxes. This will be a nightmare. It will allow local government to raise new taxes and believe me, they will...

4. Property taxes will be discussed; but, not fixed again...

Mike Sylvester

Indiana Election Results

As expected The Democrats took the Indiana House. Prior to the election it was 52 Reps to 48 Dems. Today it looks like it is now 52 Dems and 48 Reps. This chamber changes hands frequently and most of us expected the Dems to take it this time around.

The Reps won all of the State offices; but, by a small margin.

Third parties and Libertarians always have a tough road in our political system and this year was no excpetion. Most people continue to vote for the "lesser of two evils" rather then smaller government and change.

The Libertarian Party ran some very strong candidates this year and those candidates worked very hard and I am proud to know each and every one of them.

Mike Kole maintained ballot access for the Libertarian Party. He received 3.3% of the vote statewide. I am disappointed that we did not do better in Allen County then we did. We will have to work on this over the next couple of years...

Three of our candidate got more votes then the margin of difference between the Dem and Rep...

Eric Schansberg ran for the 9th Congressional District. He won 4.5% of the vote. This race was won by 2.8% of the vote.

Greg Kelver ran for the 20th State House District and got 7.8% of the vote. This race was won by 6% of the vote.

Rex Bell ran for the 54th State House District and got 14.4% of the vote. This race was won by 6.5% of the vote.

Mike Sylvester

Allen County and Fort Wayne Election Results

The results are in and there are few surprises locally.

The big race locally was Republican Mark Souder vs Democrat Tom Hayhurst. Mark Souder won with 54.37% of the vote. Mark Souder won his 7th term (After pledging to only serve 6) in a close re-election bid. This is very disappointing to me; but, teaches me something about our political system.

The next biggest local race was for sheriff. As expected Republican Ken Fries won. Ken Fries got 55.6% of the vote, Democrat Tina Taviano got 38.8% of the vote, and Independent PJ Smith got 5.6% of the vote. The polls on this race were VERY wrong.

We only had one Libertarian on the ballot locally. Robert Enders did A GREAT JOB I am very proud of him. We need more Libertarians to step up and run for local office. I cannot thank Robert Enders enough!

The Republicans won most races locally as they always seem to. They did lose several including:

1. The biggest surprise for me was Democrat Maye Johnson is now on the County Council. She won fairly easily.

2. The Dems won the assessors office and township board in Adams Township.

3. The Dems won the assessor's office, trustee position, and all three seats on the Wayne Township Board.

4. Phil GiaQuinta took the seat his father last held in the 80th House District.

Mike Sylvester