Friday, December 12, 2008

Defense Cuts? In a Time of War?

The Party is showing its true colors. The far left is demanding their pound of flesh for hiding those colors long enough to get The Party elected.

The left leaning Center for American Progress released a blueprint for defense policy and force plans for the incoming Obama administration. The report calls defense spending "out of control" and calls for big cuts in weapons programs.

And Reprehensible Murtha is leading the way:

Powerful Pennsylvania congressman Jack Murtha, chairman of the House Appropriations defense subcommittee, said the Pentagon must prepare for smaller budgets and that potential spending cuts will likely come from the personnel side.

We need a strong Representative to stand up to these far left members of The Party. The DNC has been taken over by the extreme; the Idealists of California, the Elitists of New York, and the Corrupt of Chicago. Murtha has demonstrated his disdain for small town America and for the Military, while clinging to his veteran status. He has forgotten whatever values the Marines managed to teach him.

But he is not the first of The Party to call for cuts to the Military in a Time of War. Reprehensible Frank led the charge before him, before the elections, before we sent him the support he needs to push it through, back to Congress.

" NEW BEDFORDAfter the November election, Democrats will push for a second economic stimulus package that includes money for the states' stalled
infrastructure projects, along with help paying for healthcare expenses, food stamps and extended unemployment benefits, U.S. Rep. Barney Frank said Thursday.

In a meeting with the editorial board of The Standard-Times, Rep. Frank, D-Mass., also called for a 25 percent cut in military spending, saying the Pentagon has to start choosing from its many weapons programs, and that upper-income taxpayers are going to see an increase in what they are asked to pay."

But these members of the extreme left wing cannot push through these measures without the support of The Party members, such as the Blue Dog Democrats, like Rep. Gordon.

I served in the Military during the Clinton years and I entered while there were still significant Veterans serving from the Carter years. I know how bad things were during those times. I, at times, spent my paycheck to buy equipment needed but not available because of budget cuts. Rucksacks and, even camouflage face paint, were simply unavailable. Training was cut back significantly. I fear the next four years will be worse, if we don't have a Representative willing to stand up to the extremes of The Party.

Clinton and Carter presided over a different time though. It was the perception of the Nation that we were not at war. It was perceived that the world was a safer place and we could make cuts in Defense. They cut it too far and they forced the Military to spend the money they did give on the wrong things. So, when Clinton called on the Military, they didn't have the tools they needed.

And when 9/11 was thrust upon us, when we finally no longer had the option of ignoring terrorism, Our Military did not have body armor, did not have armored HumVees, and faced an uphill battle. It took years to recover to the level of readiness required to win.

But we are at war now. We are spending less of our GDP on the Military now than we did when we won the Cold War. We have a smaller military, doing everything that is asked of them, no matter how stretched they are, no matter how great the sacrifice asked of them. This is not the time to cut personnel and equipment for the Military to do that job.

If there is one thing that the Federal Government is tasked to do, it is to provide for the United Defense of the States.

Representative Gordon: as a Veteran, as an American, as a Citizen, you must oppose this movement from within The Party. Our Congress can not return to pre-9/11 head in the sand mentalities. We are watching. The Common Sense Citizens of Middle Tennessee will not stand for putting Our Troops in the Unemployment lines while you try to salvage UAW salaries. We can not allow Our Military to be cut at the very time they are stretched thin, while they defend our freedoms in the deserts of Afghanistan and Iraq, while Murtha and Frank attack the good people of the small towns and the Marines that defend them.

Tennessee Taylor©2008, TNT, all rights reserved.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

UAW Bailout - Technological Glitch

Rep. Gordon has a stellar record of being present for and active in votes. Hence it was a surprise that he was recorded absent for last night's vote (see the entry below this one). He has clarified the issue:

Rep. Bart Gordon, D-Murfreesboro, intended to vote for the bill but said his
vote was not recorded because of a technical glitch.

He seems to be confused about who Our Citizens work for. The Common Sense Citizens of Middle Tennessee have regularly rejected the UAW. We do not work for that Employment Corporation, because we understand that it strangles the industries that pay us.

He seems to believe that the Taxpayers of Tennessee should contribute to the $70k/year wages of the UAW in Michigan.

Here's an idea: If the UAW wants to salvage jobs, accept a pay and benefits package that allows the Big Three to compete. Before the UAW begs for money from the Good People of Gainsboro making on average, less than $40k/year, how about they share that $30k more a year they make with their fellow workers that would otherwise be laid off.

And what of the last bailout bill? We are now hearing the news: Banks that were forced to take Our Taxdollars (by the vote of Rep Gordon) are buying banks in China.

The UAW and Big 3 have already told us this is only their first round of begging for the Tax Dollars of Smyrna to prop up their wages and 95% Unemployment Benefits. They've already told us they'll be back to beg for more of Our Money.

State Governments are already getting in line to beg for loans from the loans of Congress that we must pay back with interest to China. Congress is implying that the Federal Government is better able to manage money than Corporations at the very time they are setting record deficits and record debts.

It is time to end this madness. It is time for Our Representatives to say NO to out of control spending, but it isn't their money. They don't mind borrowing more and spending more to keep their campaign dollars rolling in.

TNTaylor©2008, TNT, all rights reserved.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Recent Votes

I can't blame him for being absent on this vote. The Chicago and Detroit Politicians demand a vote for the UAW from their membership. The People of Petersburg want more of their taxdollars spent in better ways. The UAW is threatening trickle down economics if their $70k/year paychecks are cut. Even the waitresses of Tennessee are targeted by the UAW ads.

Below are Barton Gordon’s most recent votes.

Go to the votes page for a complete list and vote feed/tracker.
Vote Description

Dec 10, 2008 8:46 PM
Gordon: Absent
On Passage - House - H.R. 7321 Auto Industry Financing and Restructuring Act
Passed 237-170, 27 not voting

Dec 10, 2008 8:27 PM
Gordon: Absent
Amendment 1 to H.R. 7321
Agreed to 403-0, 30 not voting

Dec 10, 2008 6:12 PM
Gordon: Aye
On Passage - H.Res. 1534 Providing for consideration of H.R. 7321, to authorize financial assistance to eligible automobile manufacturers, and for other purposes
Passed 225-179, 29 not voting

Dec 10, 2008 5:53 PM
Gordon: Aye
On Ordering the Previous Question: H.Res. 1534 Providing for consideration of H.R. 7321, to authorize financial assistance to eligible automobile manufacturers, and for other purposes
Passed 225-180, 28 not voting

Dec 10, 2008 4:11 PM
Gordon: Aye
On Approving the Journal
Passed 215-170, 48 not voting

Nevertheless, the UAW Bailout Bill, aka Big 3 Bridge Loan, passed the House, in part because he didn't vote against it. Neither did he work with The Party to oppose it.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

The Unrepentant UAW

The UAW was back on Capital Hill today, again telling of their terrible woes, how they can barely live on $70,000+/year and how they needed money from the Good people of Gainesboro to survive the economic hard times.

They attempted to be repentant. They promised to give up their $65,000+ unemployment checks if the Members of Murfreesboro will give up their tax dollars to support their lavish incomes.

They even said they'd let their employers pay their benefits checks late to their bloated Employment Corporation, the UAW, if the Taxpayers of Tennessee would simply donate more of our paychecks. They complained it was unfair for us to look at their bloated paychecks and benefits packages as a source of the problem, that their wages alone only caused 10% of the prices we pay on trucks we love.

Sorry, Detroit, I don't buy your new found sacrifices. I don't buy into your impoverished 70k/year pity party. No, I will not let you bend the taxpayers over the barrel as you have the American Consumer for decades. I know it's a bad economy up there. The UAW and your politicians have strangled it.

Your example is what we need to avoid, Detroit. We need a Common Sense Citizen, not a party loyalist as Our Representative. We need someone that represents Our People, not their Corporate Constituencies. Our Representative must say no to this nonsense. Our Citizens should not prop up the paychecks of overpaid workers in Detroit, even if their executives are smart enough to drive hybrids the second time round of their begging.

TNTaylor©2008, Tennessee Taylor, all rights reserved.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Whose Money is it Anyway?

The fact is that the eyes of the Citizens of Cannon County glaze over when Congress talks about Billions and Trillions of dollars. It's hard for us to conceptualize that amount of money and numbers can be boring to all but IRS agents and Accountants.

It's boring talk but necessary. I apologize that I delve into the numbers as often as I do. We're not talking about Monopoly Money, no matter how casually our Politicians through it around, no matter how easily they choose to spend another few billion dollars.

But whose money is it? It is Ours! It is collected from us by the IRS. It does not belong to politicians. It is not taken solely from the people of Belle Meade. It is paid for with your purchases at the Gas Station, the Home Furnishings Store, and the Corner Store, even when you don't see it.

It is not just what you see taken out of your paycheck, but also the part your employer pays the Government rather than you before you see your paycheck. It is what you pay for your groceries so Kroger can pay their corporate taxes. It is what you pay for milk that is paid to the IRS rather than the dairy farmer.

Of course the government requires money to operate. We elect Representatives to responsibly decide how to spend our money. Instead, the California Idealists and the New York Elitists have chosen to earmark our money to reward their supporters. They do so with the backscratching support of Tennessee Politicians.

They've created a perception that this money belongs to someone else. They've marketed federal spending as free money, but the real goal is to create dependency and buy votes and finances for their campaigns.

Our government needs to get out of the business of non-profits, real estate ventures, and bad investments. The role of the government is not to act as United Way but to provide for a united defense. There is not an unlimited supply of money, not in our paychecks and not from our paychecks. The authorized debt of the taxpayer, i.e. the Federal Debt, cannot continue to be raised with the vote of our politician in support of his Chicago taskmasters.

TNTaylor©2008, Tennesse Taylor, all rights reserved.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Big 3 Bailout?

International Automakers continue to flock to the South even as the Big 3 sit before Congress asking for Southern Lawmakers to prop up their unprofitable practices. Having seen how successful the banking CEO's were in their "urgent" demands for cash, GM, Ford, & Chrysler figured they could sell their lemon with tales of doom and gloom as well.

They are asking that the Workers of White Co give their tax dollars to maintain the exorbitant benefits and wages attained by the UAW. Consider this from the UAW:

The tentative agreement, reached at 3:05 a.m. Sept. 26[2007], delivers solid economic gains for active and retired members, despite repeated attempts by
GM to impose harsh takeaways
The agreement will deliver more than $13,000 in economic gains for a typical UAW member, including a $3,000 signing bonus, two 3 percent lump sums and a 4 percent lump sum.
GM has 252,000 Employees and the top 5 executives earn $7.68 Million alone. The 3 Automakers combine for 564,409 of the highest paid factory workers in the Nation. Two of them were recently on the news downplaying their salary, noting that they barely made more than $70,000 in their best year, before their additional benefits. There are college graduates and engineers making less money.

In the end, it is the American Consumer paying those salaries. Now they are asking the People of Petersburg to prop up those making twice as much as they are.

I am very much opposed to Politicians, Bureacrats, and Government dictating internal business practices unnecesarily, but before Lee Iacocca came begging for a Loan, he reduced his own salary to $1/year. When business asks for a loan, they must open the books, explain their plan for success, and demonstrate they know how to pay back that money. In a case like this, they must demonstrate that they've identified the means to cut back on costs.

The Big 3 still have not figured out the primary cause of their declining sales: products which cost twice as much without delivering greater quality. Before they can pay back the loans they're asking for, they have to return to profitability. Before they can make money, they must sell their cars for more than it costs to make them. They have continously asked us to pay more for their products, believing our loyalty to American business superceded our good financial sense.

The Big 3 are a story of personal greed at every level. They are like a rich uncle asking for a loan from a College Student working at McDonalds's to pay his own way through school.

If Congress wishes to create the Taxpayer Savings & Loan Corporation, Bad Debt Inc., then they need to be as discriminating as the Loan Officers of the Banks they bailed out. It was bad debt and rampant greed that got us into this mess. Changing the lien holder from private business to the US Taxpayer does not improve the situation.

General Motors Employees donated more than $232,000 to Political Campaigns in the 2008 election cycle. The GM Political Action Committee paid out more than $712,000 in political campaigns/donations, including to Representative Bart Gordan.

And the UAW PAC collected more than $8 Million and developed a war chest of $10 Million to influence our politicians: Again we find Representative Bart Gordon on their list.

Will the investment made by the CEO's and Unions of Detroit in our Congressman pay off in a vote to prop up the exorbinant wages that strangle our ability to buy the cars we want with the hard work of our autoworkers in Smyrna? Or will our Representative resist the urge to serve his Corporate Constituency in Detroit in favor of the Taxpayers of Tennessee?

I want the Big 3 to survive and thrive as much as anyone, but I realize that in order for that to happen, they must cut their wasteful spending and tighten their own belt before they ask us to take on more debt to cover theirs. I don't want Congress mandating the wages paid and the means of transportation of private business, but the market, i.e. the consumers, have told them they're charging too much.

But that credit card we gave Congress is burning a hole in their pocket and they have more in common with the Big 3, Bankers, and Jet Set CEO's and their spending beyond their means than they do with the average worker of Woodbury.

TNTaylor©2008, Tennessee Taylor, all rights reserved.