Town Hall FeedbackMany of you went the distance and participated in Town Hall events during the Congressional August Break. We are very anxious to hear about your experiences and feedback that you have about the events, Congressmen's positions, etc. Obviously, Health Care Reform has been the predominate topic, but there have been some discussions on other crucial topics such as Cap and Trade, Economic Stimulus, Forclosures, etc. We want to hear from you on any of these topics! You can leave a comment on this blog post by clicking here, or by sending us an email at [email protected]. Your thoughts, experiences, positions, or general opinions would be great! We will put together a montage of these comments in the next week.
Cash for ClunkersBy all accounts, the cash for clunkers program has been a huge success. Never mind the fact that auto dealerships want nothing to do with the bureaucratic red tape and if at all possible will steer a customer toward conventional financing. The fact of the matter is that it has been a real boost to the economy. So who really has benefited from this program?
- Some consumers, who traded up from old gas guzzlers to spiffy new fuel-efficient models,
- Auto dealers, who were able to dump inventory and pay their financiers,
- Banks, who all of a sudden, had some new auto loan volume, with up to $4,500 down-payments,
- Auto companies, especially Ford, Toyota, Honda and Nissan, who led the pack in sales. Conspicuously absent from the list were the beneficiaries of the government's bailout program, General Motors and Chrysler. The car companies were also able to unload a bunch of inventory,
- Unions, who conceivably will be called back to work to replace all of that sold inventory,
- Steel manufacturers, such as Nucor, who will be able to buy cheap scrap steel and turn it into something usable,
- The green movement, because these new cars will be spitting out fewer greenhouse gas emissions,
- And the biggest winner of all, the Obama Administration, who was able to satisfy a number of constuencies and supporters, namely, the unions, the green folks, and the car companies they now run (GM and Chrysler). In the process, the President will be able to boast how this will boost the nation's Gross Domestic Product and single-handedly pull us out of recession.
Dictators vs CoachesI was reading a book yesterday by John Maxwell called "Developing the Leaders Around You" (1995, Injoy, Inc.) On page 161, Rev. Maxwell describes the difference between dictators and "dream team coaches", or "facilitators". In Maxwell's words:
|Hoard decisions.||Push decisions down the line.|
|Make decisions alone or restrict them to an elite group.||Involve others as much as possible in key decisions and give people space to make those decisions [...]|
Enjoy Your Last TermOne of the more interesting developments surrounding the “health care” debate is the incredible inability of the left to read, understand and consider the mood of the general electorate. The town hall meetings being held across the country embody the...
How To Read A BillNot something you have to pay for (well, maybe), but legislative bills. Kim Lehman wrote a piece at Caffeinated Thoughts (Shane took a few days of well-deserved vacation). She provides some key valuable insights into how to understand a bill's content. Well worth the time! Kind of scary to think that more constituents are reading these bills than the Congressmen and Senators themselves. We'll add a link to this in TCR Tools as well. Reading Assignment:
HR 2454: Cap and Trade
Once Again, Congress Is ExemptedThere is a continuing theme in Congress and many of our State Legislatures that what's good for goose, is only good for the goose. Take a gander. Yes, you read that right. Congressmen can fly around in private jets, and can even buy brand-spanking new ones. Even though they criticize those in the business world who do the same (remember the CEOs of the Big Three Auto companies?). The best part is, Congress does it with money that they forcibly take from us (I am loathe to call it "theft", although the temptation to do so has grown in the past six months). Businesses do it with money they earn. Earn. I think I will start a new category: Congressional Exemptions. You see, Congress is of the opinion that they are, ahem, not always obliged to conform to the same set of laws or ideals that the rest of us are. Truly. And this is due in no small part to the Constitution of the United States. Yes that very document that we hold so dear as the last vestige of solace to those that would decry a tyrannical government.
Article I, Section 6 (The Legislative Branch - Compensation): ..."They shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during [...]
Obama DramaThe events of the last couple of weeks surrounding our nation's capitol in general, and the White House specifically, have been fun to watch. It has been my assertion that President Obama, despite his polished rhetoric, is in over his head, and, if given enough time, will prove it. We're finally beginning to see signs of his inexperience and, dare I say, incompetence. First, he tried to ram through Congress an incredibly toxic, poorly crafted, Socialized Health Care bill. For this administration, it wasn't enough to be able to spend $1.2 trillion in January without anyone having a chance to read, much less comment on, what was appropriated. President Obama's insistence that Congress pass something prior to breaking for the month of August, regardless of what the bill contained, was reckless, irresponsible, and incredibly arrogant. Here's a news flash, Mr. President: The havoc you are trying to wreak on the nation's health care system must not be irreparable. Whether you realize it or not, we, as citizens, and our elected representatives, have a right, if not an outright obligation, to be able to read the bills being debated in our elected assemblies. It's best if we proceed prudently and cautiously. If you had any administrative experience whatsoever, you would understand this. Then, apparently feeling left out from the daily mindlessness that is Joe Biden's thought processes, the President decided to assert himself in the Professor Gates controversy by declaring that the Boston PD acted "stupidly"
Dems uncomfortable when their own tactics used against themSo, this morning comes a note from "Think Progress".... a website which contributes to neither thought, nor progress... The article whines about a report from The Politico. Says the amazingly accurately initialed TP:
This morning, Politico reported that Democratic members of Congress are increasingly being harassed by â€œangry, sign-carrying mobs and disruptive behaviorâ€ at local town halls. For example, in one incident, right-wing protesters surrounded Rep. Tim Bishop (D-NY) and forced police officers to have to escort him to his car for safety. This growing phenomenon is often [...]
Health Care Reform: Abortion Funding and Mandates Still on the Table (Promoted From TCR:Iowa)(Originally posted on The Conservative Reader: Iowa) If you don't already know, we are thoroughly Pro Life here at the The Conservative Reader. From the moment of conception, the rights of every American should extend to even those that are still in the womb, despite the inconvenience they may pose to their mother. We are also opposed to the current effort in Congress to foist a complex, expensive, invasive and industry-busting piece of legislation in the name of saving lives and improving the health of Americans. We are not opposed to ensuring that all Americans have access to health-care, but this bill, in whatever form it has taken thus far, is not in the best interest America. More on that in the next few days. Worse yet, is that such a bill, in the name of saving lives, may end up funneling more and more money to take lives... innocent lives at that. The following is a piece provided by Jenifer Bowen (appeared in the Facebook group page for Iowa Right To Life):
There is a battle going on in the Congress over Health Care reform and they, meaning the U.S. Representatives and U.S. Senators, are under heavy pressure to strike a deal and get it done before the summer recess in August. Our concern is a "deal" that would allow for funding and mandates in the bill. There are millions of dollars at stake, and the abortion industry is working hard to get their hands on what they see as a gold mine of tax funding. Their goal includes mandating abortion as health care and having their mandates funded. The good news is that there are many leaders in congress with a conscience that want health care reform, but do not agree with mandating or funding abortion with taxpayer's money. However, the pressure from President Obama and the Democrat leadership is mounting, as they want abortion as part of Health Care Reform. This is bad news since it comes down to heavy political pressures on each representative. This is when your voice really counts. This [...]