Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Liberty Is Coming To CT!



We are so excited!!

Liberty is coming to CT!

For the first time in CT's recent history, people are gathering to map out a plan to save our Constitutional rights. Not since the 1700's, when the colonists gathered together in taverns to discuss the formation and ratification of the Constitution, have citizens felt the need to gather together once again to discuss Constitutional issues. This time, they are gathering to discuss how to stop the destruction of the Constitution.

On September 27 and 28, 2008, some of the most pre-eminent people in their field, leaders in the fight against erosion of our Constitutional rights from all across the country, will be gathering at the Bristol Clarion Hotel for Connecticut's First Annual Liberty Forum. They will be holding workshops addressing every aspect of our Constitution, including but not limited to erosion in the areas of freedom of speech, eminent domain, U.S. sovereignty, and parental rights.

The purpose of the forum is to promote liberty, to increase education concerning our Constitutional rights, and to create a call to action to protect those rights.

The CT Liberty Forum Registration and other information is now available online!

Feel free to post this event on your listserv's - egroups - blogs - and other group emails.

Listed is the schedule of events, speakers and speaker bios, hotel information and exhibitor information. We have a great line-up of speakers, and we have a wonderful schedule of events.

We will be presenting the first ever CT Freedom Fighter Award to Susette Kelo and Michael Cristofaro for their heroic efforts to combat eminent domain abuse here in CT and across the land, and while they have lost their homes to developers in New London, they have spurred on a movement across this country that has resounded from sea to shining sea. Come hear Mr. Cristofaro's story at our Saturday luncheon.

Our Saturday evening Keynote Speaker is Jim Gilchrist, Founder of the Minuteman Project will speak about his efforts to protect our borders.

On Sunday morning our keynote breakfast will feature Robert Levy of the Cato Institute who will talk about Supreme Court Rulings that have damaged our liberties.

There will be many other outstanding speakers and this event promises to be exciting and informative.

We will even be broadcasting live on Saturday morning on WDRC Radio - on The Talk of Connecticut with Brad Davis.

People can register online and use a credit card to pay through PayPal or Google Checkout, or they can register through the mail with payment by check.

Anyone wishing to have their liberty minded company be an exhibitor, or purchase ad space in our program guide can also participate in this event.

I hope you'll circle the date on your calendar and register today to catch the Early Bird special pricing ! This is an event you will not want to miss!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Parody Music For Saturday



This healthcare ditty by Barry Levy is so amusing (and probably true)
and the original was of course "There's No Business Like Show Business" - here is one version sung by Ethel Merman as well as from the 1950's production of "Annie Get Your Gun"

Friday, July 25, 2008

Obama Campaign Not Unlike Adolf Hitler's?


You might not agree, but some people have already been making the comparisons, and they are a bit eerie. Check out this post. It does have some interesting observations, not all are valid, but many seem worth thinking about ... And while no one is suggesting that Obama seeks to exterminate people... his message of "change and unity" is the same, his methods (and marketing) are the same, his delivery is the same, and his audience reacts the same.

The problem is we don't really know WHAT Obama really stands for. He expertly crafts his message for the particular audience he is addressing at any particular time; For example: telling AIPAC what they want to hear about an undivided Jerusalem and then telling others something else.

That blogger pointed out some things, and I have also added a few comments:
The economic conditions in Germany after World War I were horrible.
Well, our economy is fraught with mortgage bailouts, recession, inflation, a deteriorating dollar and lost jobs.

Adolf Hitler honed his oratory skills and became a superb speaker.
Obama is a superb speaker with the ability to mesmerize his followers.

Adolf Hitler surrounded himself with thugs and Jew haters.
Reverand Wright (black nationalist), Louis Farrakan (who claims Judaism is a "gutter religion"), Bill Ayers (a confessed terrorist), and Tony Rezko to name a few. Jeremiah Wright, Louis Farrakhan, and others have blamed white people and Jews for their problems.

Adolf Hitler had many people fooled (including many Jews that never thought all of that evil could happen in their country)
Obama fits his message to his audience. Is anyone really sure what Obama stands for? (example: Against FISA, For FISA, For a united Jerusalem, For a negotiated settlement including a divided Jerusalem - etc.)

Adolf Hitler spoke of change and a new Germany.
Obama's message is all about Change and Hope.

The people of Germany got caught up in the euphoria of the changes that Hitler promised.
Obama supporters swoon and faint.

The Nazis were elitists with talk of the Arayan Race.
Obama is an elitist who fancies himself a Global citizen. Obama showed his elitist attitude during his speech in San Francisco. His arrogance parallels Hitler’s Aryan race comments in regard to Obama’s God Like omnipotence in regard to having the answers to problems.

Another similarity between Obama and Hitler. Their campaigns have especially targeted young people.

Hitler and Obama both shot from obscurity to stardom in a relatively short time.
And another blogger says this:
Gun control, socialized healthcare, compulsory national service, an anti-market economic position, all on top of a creepy, cult-like leader worship by supporters. Thats five too many similarities.
The parallels are clear and they are worth examining!
Particularly if people are blindly following along
What is the lesson to be learned?

The German people blindly followed Hitler with his promises of change. Hitler and his cohorts were not scrutinized by enough people. Barack Obama is promising change and many are blindly following in a similar euphoric state. All candidates for the presidency must be questioned and carefully scrutinized.

Here is also an interesting piece Obama's Politics of Collective Redemption from the American Thinker.

This comment was left on a You Tube video about Obama:
"Like Hitler, Obama uses simple messages to win over people.
Like Hitler, Obama seeks to disband freedoms.
Like Hitler, Obama supporters faint and cry when he speaks.
Like Hitler, Obama campaigns on hope.
Like Hitler, Obama speaks of change.
Like Hitler, Obama campaigns on unity.
Like Hitler, Obama is popular in a time of economic weakness.
Like Hitler, Obama has an emblem/seal.
Like Hitler, Obama targets youth."

Perhaps Obama doesn't seek to exterminate anyone - but who is he really? What does he really believe? Should we be concerned about the company he has kept in the past 20 year or so?
It is said, "Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it!"

Think too of the meaning and symbolism of the places he has chosen to speak - the Temple of Hercules in Jordan ... The Victory Column (“The Siegessäule in Berlin was moved from the Reichstag to its current position by Adolf Hitler," he told the Bild am Sonntag. "It was a symbol for German supremacy and victorious wars against Denmark, Austria and France.”)

I am sure you can appreciate the metaphors.

Where exactly will we be heading with this man in office? Who IS Barack Hussein Obama? Why are people so mesmerized? This phenomenon must be analyzed completely before anyone chooses this man to be the "Leader of the Free World".

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Don't Name Your Baby Talula Does The Hula


What is it with some people? They give their kids crazy names and expect them to have a normal life?

This story came out today about a New Zealand Judge that thankfully allowed this 9 year old kid from Hawaii to change her name.

Judge Rob Murfitt made the 9-year-old girl a ward of the court so that her name could be changed, he said in a ruling made public Thursday. The girl was involved in a custody battle, he said. The new name was not made public to protect the girl's privacy.

"The court is profoundly concerned about the very poor judgment which this child's parents have shown in choosing this name," he wrote. "It makes a fool of the child and sets her up with a social disability and handicap, unnecessarily."

The girl had been so embarrassed at the name that she had never told her closest friends what it was. She told people to call her "K" instead, the girl's lawyer, Colleen MacLeod, told the court.

In his ruling, Murfitt cited a list of the unfortunate names.

Registration officials blocked some names, including Fish and Chips, Yeah Detroit, Keenan Got Lucy and Sex Fruit, he said. But others were allowed, including Number 16 Bus Shelter "and tragically, Violence," he said.

New Zealand law does not allow names that would cause offense to a reasonable person, among other conditions, said Brian Clarke, the registrar general of Births, Deaths and Marriages.

Clarke said officials usually talked to parents who proposed unusual names to convince them about the potential for embarrassment.

Honestly, anyone wanting to name their kid Fish and Chips or Sex Fruit is sadly disturbed. I am all for raising your kids the way you want to, but really unconventional names for any child can probably border on child abuse.

I am sure you recall Johnny Cash's song "A Boy Named Sue"

I have to admit I have known some people which provided smirks among friends and taunts from others.

One girl I knew was Candy Kane.
Another guy I knew was Dusty Rhoades.
Then there were the twin girls Katherine and Kathleen so her mom could just say Kathy and get it right (they were identical twins)
Of course I also knew an April May June

sigh... I am sure you've known some interesting names yourself.

You have to admit though that Tulula Does The Hula takes the cake.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Day Care Babies Are Fatter


Reuters Health News came out with this piece today that touts a study (Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, July 2008.) that claims that infants cared for by someone other than mom or dad are more apt to be exposed to "unfavorable" feeding practices and to gain more weight during their first year of life.

An excerpt from the article says:
Dr. Juhee Kim of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and co-investigator Dr. Karen E. Peterson of Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, analyzed data on child care arrangements, feeding practices, and weight gain collected for 8,150 infants who were 9 months old. More than half of these children received regular child care from someone other than a parent. They found that roughly 40 percent of infants placed in child care when they were younger than 3 months of age were less likely to have been breastfed and were more likely to begin to eat solid foods earlier than infants cared for by their parents.
Chalk up another study which illustrates the benefits of breastfeeding and stay at home moms (and dads) who care for their kids directly. The study gave yet more credence to other studies that suggest that breastfeeding may lower a child's risk of becoming overweight and that the early introduction of solid foods may increase the risk of obesity.
"Overwhelming and consistent data support the notion that early weight gain during infancy is a strong risk factor for (becoming) overweight in childhood and adulthood," Kim and Peterson note.

They also point out that the number of working moms of young children has more than doubled in the U.S., from 24 percent in 1970 to 57 percent in 2000. A recent study estimated that 72 percent of infants were in some form of child care during their first year of life. During this same time, the prevalence of overweight children ages 6 to 23 months increased from 7 percent to 12 percent.

"This study is the first to report the potential influence of infant child care on infant nutrition and growth," Kim added.
The results of this study garnered some pretty interesting statistics. I find it incredibly interesting that the increase in working moms correlates with childhood obesity. Of course, I am sure many other factors should be included - like genetics and the increase in corn syrup in our food supply, and that kids get less exercise in general these days; but the correlation is pretty startling.

While not all moms (and dads) can or want to stay at home and care for their children, it would seem that the data suggests that that it may be in fact the optimal model in child care. So all you "stay at home moms (and dads)" out there who feel somehow "less than" your professional and earning counterparts who have kids in daycare, take heart in the fact that you may be doing the best for your kids and family in the long run. (Yeah - I know that can be disputed... the debate has been with us since the women's liberation movement began...working and earning moms make some tough decisions and sacrifices too, and I commend them because I was once in their shoes up until I left corporate America after my 2nd child was born)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Are We Entering A New Age Called Post-Materialism?


It could very well be that with higher energy prices and other costs of things skyrocketing that everyday people are finally beginning to take a good look at how they spend their money. It is even becoming trendy to be frugal and to enter the world of "simple living".

This article in the Hartford Courant caught my interest. Aside from the "going green" aspect, my thoughts on this article is just that people are yearning for a simpler life, with less "stuff". They can certainly blame their desire for frugality on a noble cause as "saving the Earth", but I think one doesn't need an excuse to be frugal.

I know lots of people who live very well on limited means. One does not have to lower their standard of living because they choose to spend less money on things. Some people I know brew their own beer, they make their own bread, they do a lot of things for themselves and the products of their hands are many time better than anything commercially made. Of course one cannot dispute or discount that in lots of instances having someone else produce an item for you is convenient and even preferable. The point is, that many people are turning to being more conservative in their spending habits and finding ways to still maintain the good things in their life.

The article said:
As the economy worsens, one group of Americans is turning to an Earth-friendly way of life as a hard-line strategy for saving....

It seems what's good for the Earth is good for the wallet.

"You don't just go out and needlessly shop as a hobby. It's really kind of an eye opener," said Julia Park Tracey, a mother of five in Alameda, Calif., who swears she isn't a "crunchy granola hippie."...

"All that was money out the window. We could not keep going like that and make ends meet," said Tracey, whose budget is being stretched thin by escalating food and gas prices....

Cutting out dry-cleaning and Starbucks alone is saving Tracey's family $250 a month. Biking and walking conserve not just oil, but piles of gas money.

Gone too are the mindless drugstore sprees where Tracey would blow $100 or more on cosmetics and snacks.
One group that has formed in California is called "the Compact", which started a few years ago in San Francisco. The group which shuns consumerism has now grown to about 9,000 members. Apparently you won't be ostracized from the group if you do own a Louis Vuitton bag, but their aim is to get people to examine their spending and economize in different ways. Some of their members vow to do away with "scented lotions, flavored lattes, iPod accessories. Now they no longer dry clean their clothes and even make their own cat food." The Compact promotes ideas such as borrowing, bartering or buying second hand on many different items that we use. They eschew people buying the latest in gadgets and upgrades especially if they aren't needed items. Making do with what one has, seems to be the message. Its a message about living a simple life in general, and that saves money in the long and short run.

This conservation movement is certainly growing and appealing to many as economic times become more challenging.

Some people say that this move to conservation can hurt business in this country.
Critics say that the U.S. economy would cave in if enough people radically pulled back on spending. But even in a downturn, the ranks of The Compact likely won't grow large enough to pose any threat to the nation's manufacturers.
I think businesses will just capitalize on this - they'd be stupid if they didn't. Just as we have seen a shift to "organically produced" foods and promotion of healthier food options, we will see businesses begin to sell conservation items or products which promote frugality, or items to help you be more frugal.

You don't have to be living like "Little House on the Prairie" - but you can economize and live quite well.

Want to start saving and joining the post-materialism and/or the conservation movement? Check out these frugal websites - some are just tips on spending less, and others offer a view into living a simpler more "organic" life:

Frugal Village dot Com

Frugal Village dot Net

Frugal Living

Finally Frugal

Organic Living

Living A Better Life

All Things Frugal

Totally Frugal - Great budgeting and finance tips

Freecycle - Reuse, recycle

Frugal Fashionista - Look like Cameron Diaz without breaking the bank. (you can probably get lots of clothing at the Salvation Army store too)

Being frugal dot net

Frugal dad

Zenhabits offers these ideas for saving money

No Impact Man - A radical Post-Consumerist Liberal - but he may have some good ideas even if he is an Al Gore devotee.

You can also visit the Festival of Frugality as they host frugal carnivals.

Monday, July 21, 2008

CT CMT Scores - Results And Issues

Here are this year's Connecticut Mastery Test Scores:

The scores are listed with percent that met State Goal and State established Proficiency levels. A state proficiency level was established and baseline data were collected for the 2001-2002 school year, according to information on the State's website.

"Goal" basically is CT's standards which are higher than those deemed "Proficient". The measurement of "Proficient" is used towards determining the Annual Yearly Progress for purposes of the No Child Left Behind legislation and Title 1 funding. Annual Yearly Progress measurements are raised every year because at some point 100% of all children in CT public schools will have to show that they are 100% proficient in each of the subjects. That was the point of NCLB, to put measurements in place and continue to raise the bar of how many kids can meet the proficiency levels. As that bar is raised, more and more schools may struggle to stay off the failing schools list. As it is, based on proficiency percentages alone, CT may look like we are doing fairly decently. Based on State goals which are higher standards, we clearly have more work to do in educating CT children.

You can find out more about what the difference is between what is meant by meeting Statewide "goal" and "proficiency by reading the "Performance Level Literals" in each category tested.

For example in Mathematics - The difference between meeting Goal and meeting Proficiency is
expressed as such (page 20 of the 2007 Interpretive Guide for the CMT):

Score of 242 – 287 Goal
Generally, third-grade students who perform at this level demonstrate extensive knowledge of grade-level content. These students demonstrate well-developed conceptual understanding, computational skills and problem-solving skills, as well as an ability to solve complex and abstract mathematical problems. Typically, the solutions these students provide to math problems are organized and include clear and concise explanations.

Score of 210 – 241 Proficient
Generally, third-grade students who perform at this level demonstrate adequate knowledge of grade-level content. These students demonstrate adequate conceptual understanding, computational skills and problem-solving skills, as well as an ability to solve complex and abstract mathematical problems. Typically, the solutions these students provide to math problems are adequate and include sufficient explanations.

Here were last year's Goal scores:


In comparison, scores for meeting "Goal" have pretty much remained the same from 2007-2008, hovering in the mid 60%. Some scores have gone up a tick or two and some have gone down a tick or two. Nothing startling, but what can be drawn from this is that even though CT has pumped more money into education, the results seem to be negligible based on State Goal percentages.

Studies have shown that you can throw more money at the problem but that will not necessarily translate into better performance.
"Raising student achievement levels and improving our schools is not a matter of spending more money doing the same things as before but rather using the resources we have available in better and more innovative ways," said ALEC Education Task Force Chairman Rep. Jane Cunningham from Missouri.
So what we ought to be looking at before we raise taxes even higher here in CT is to see what we are doing with the education funding already in place. People are already debating the issue of the need for more parental involvement (although when they choose to homeschool and really get involved, it's not a good idea - wink, wink) and the impact of the deterioration of home life as it affects kids' learning abilities.

You can't just throw money at social problems either. Either parents are going to involved in their kids' education or they are not. It has also already been seen that poor parents can be just as involved in their kids' education as more affluent parents. And while poor parents may have more of a struggle to juggle their work and life circumstances to deal with their kids' education, that's an issue that can and has been overcome by many caring parents without the help of state funding or legislation. You cannot legislate or fund desire and commitment.

Despite the fact that we have neglect laws, I still find it incredible that we solve the problem of kids not coming to school fed properly, by feeding them when they come to school. We somehow don't punish the parent who sends their kid to school without being properly fed or clothed. We tend to end up enabling the problem to continue. And for those parents who don't have the money for food or clothing for their kids, you cannot tell me that we do not have enough social programs in place to address that in the government and in the faith-based sector.

The State and schools can, and should, only do so much. Aside from making physical abuse illegal, they cannot dictate how people raise their kids or legislate the amount of interest their kids must have in educating their kids. Most parents have already abrogated their responsibility regarding educating their kids to the school systems. The social implication of that has already been felt as well. Parents have become lax in teaching their kids anything because they feel the school will cover it, and that goes from everything from sex education to manners, to instilling a sense of self-esteem to teaching right from wrong. If the school doesn't teach those things, then the media does. Therein certainly lays one problem.

Perhaps if CT wasn't so highly taxed that families need to spend more time at work to pay the bills and pay taxes, we might have more time for parents to be involved in their kids education. Perhaps if CT were more friendly to all choices in education there would be more opportunity for kids to find programs that work for them better, rather than being shoe-horned into traditional models that may no longer work well. Perhaps if we used our resources more wisely in the process of educating our kids, instead of just using resources to create and perpetuate jobs, they might do better. Perhaps if we took a closer look at what our curriculum contains and toss out the non-academic and social engineering aspects, then our kids would be better able to read and calculate and reason. There are so many ways that we can and should be looking to improve.

Getting back to teaching the basics is one way to improve. The tougher problem is to somehow bring accountability back into parenting, because many parents are just not doing their part. And I have news for you; that happens no matter what the family income level is.

One thing is for certain: we should be doing better and throwing more money at our education problems will certainly not guarantee any improvements.

Further reading: CT Education Cost Sharing Entitlements

Friday, July 18, 2008

It's Time For Some Campaignin'

This was sent to me by a friend... and thought I'd share it

Send a JibJab Sendables® eCard Today!


With the media out in full force to travel with "The Anointed One", to Europe and the Middle East,
Senator John McCain's trip to Iraq last spring was a low-key affair: With his ordinary retinue of reporters following him abroad, the NBC News anchor Brian Williams reported on his arrival in Baghdad from New York, with just two sentences tacked onto the "in other political news" portion of his newscast.

But when Obama heads for Iraq and other locations overseas this summer, Williams is planning to catch up with him in person, as are the other two evening news anchors, Charles Gibson of ABC and Katie Couric of CBS, who, like Williams, are far along in discussions to interview Obama on successive nights.

And while the anchors are jockeying for interviews with Obama at stops along his route, the regulars on the Obama campaign plane will have new seat mates: star political reporters from the major newspapers and magazines who are flocking to catch Obama's first overseas trip since becoming the presumptive nominee of his party.
And exactly how much fuel and energy will these Liberals be using to traipse around the world for photo-ops and to rub elbows with other leaders?

And of course John McCain is screaming media bias, which is a hoot all together after what was done to previous presidential candidates, as well as still being done to current third party candidates.

The public need not bother to vote for President in November - the media has already chosen Obama and now they are just going along for this coming out party ... it's the debutante ball when he will be formally introduced to the world. All that is missing is Obama flying on Air Force One.

This presidential race is such a sad joke. The American people really have little choice as they are herded into picking from either of these two. Most won't ever even know there are other candidates running for office who have other ideas.

So do you think Heath Ledger will win a posthumous Oscar for playing the Joker in Batman Dark Knight? Some say yes.

Where Does Our Imported Oil Come From?

We keep hearing about how we are heavily dependent on Middle Eastern Oil, and we are funding the terrorists etc, etc, etc. I did some poking around to find out just what we import and export. Here is what I found:

Here is the data from the Energy Information Administration (US Government site)

Crude Oil Imports (Top 15 Countries)
(Thousand Barrels per Day)
Country May-08




CANADA
SAUDI ARABIA
MEXICO
VENEZUELA
NIGERIA
IRAQ
ANGOLA
ALGERIA
BRAZIL
KUWAIT
COLOMBIA
ECUADOR
RUSSIA
LIBYA
EQUATORIAL GUINEA

Total Imports of Petroleum (Top 15 Countries)
(Thousand Barrels per Day)
Country May-08




CANADA
SAUDI ARABIA
MEXICO
VENEZUELA
NIGERIA
ALGERIA
IRAQ
ANGOLA
RUSSIA
VIRGIN ISLANDS
BRAZIL
COLOMBIA
KUWAIT
UNITED KINGDOM
NORWAY

From the chart above, it looks like about 30% of our crude oil comes from the Middle East with only 17% coming from the Saudis and only 6% coming from Iraq.

But here are the members of OPEC: The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is a group of twelve states made up of Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Libya, Algeria, Nigeria, Angola, Venezuela and Ecuador. Based on the chart above, we get about 60% of our oil from OPEC producers.

And here is another chart showing our exports by OPEC and Non-OPEC countries.

The US also happens to export oil and here is where it goes.

According to this webpage(on the right side of the page) - the US is the third highest producer of oil and the largest consumer and importer of oil.

Top World Oil Consumers, 2006
(thousand barrels per day)



It's interesting information to say the least.
The forecasts are also pretty fascinating reading.

U.S. Energy Consumption by Fuel (1980-2030)
(quadrillion Btu)
U. S. Energy Consumption by Fuel (1980-2030).  Need help, contact the National Energy Information Center at 202-586-8800.

One thing is clear - we should shift our sources of energy and continue to develop new technologies.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Denver And Beijing - Putting People Out of Sight


Well, it was to be expected for Beijing to send their dissidents and other undesirable people packing in order to put a rosy face on their city for the Olympic games, but so is our own Denver, Colorado, seemingly following in the footsteps of Communist China.

With the Democratic National Convention coming to town, the homeless and transients are being given movie and museum tickets to get them off the streets. The Rocky Mountain News reports this:
The Colorado Coalition for the Homeless plans to get 500 movie tickets as well as passes to the Denver Zoo, Denver Museum of Nature and Science and other cultural facilities for the people it helps.

Bus tickets will be provided for events beyond walking distance, said John Parvensky, the non-profit's president.

Many day shelters will have expanded hours during the convention, and big screen TVs are being donated to some shelters so patrons can watch convention goings-on without being caught up in the mayhem.

My goodness... they might even have a name for this: "Humane Displacement". The Colorado Coalition for the Homeless claim that they are just trying to help these people from being harassed. Most people aren't buying it though, and compare it to the Communists in China who are shipping people off on "vacations in the country", and have built jails to keep protesters away from the games just so people won't see a problem while visiting for the Olympic Games. The people in those jails are being called "Olympic Prisoners". Communist dissidents are being warned not to interfere with the games.

There are a bunch of articles that have been written about this,
The Olympic Games are being held in Beijing, China, Aug 8th to Aug 24th 2008
The rules for foreign visitors are here in this article.

But back to Denver.....
I know we want to put a nice face on things - get out the best dishes and tidy up the place and all, but honestly it's really such a shame that they have to mask their homeless problem like this.
Among the many great comments to the article in the Rocky Mountain News was this one:
Ah yes, let's hide the homeless so the politicians won't see them. How typically Liberal of you.

The Colorado Coalition for the Homeless probably got paid off by those wonderful "caring" Liberals in the DNC to hide the homeless. That way, nobody at the convention would have to see reality and face up to the fact that the Liberal "war on poverty" accomplished absolutely nothing except wasting money on an ineffective government bureaucracy.
and another:
In 1968, Boss Richard J. Daley, the Democratic Party strongman of Chicago, erected large plywood fences along the routes from the airport to the convention center so that the Democrats wouldn't have to see the black squalor in his Democrat-run city.

If this isn't history repeating itself, I don't know what is.

So the Democrats in Denver, rather than build Potemkin Villages to hide the failure of their social programs, just shuttle the unsightly homeless off to museums or movies or some other -- out of sight -- out of mind -- place.

How benevolent these liberal Democrats.
And while this convention will be pumping millions of dollars into the local economy, it would perhaps be more beneficial to help get these people jobs and help them really get back on their feet rather than sending them off to an art gallery for a few days.

It's shameful that we have homeless, but perhaps even more shameful that we should try to hide them and pretend they don't exist - especially if it might put a gray cloud over the DNC convention.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Best Cartoon Of The Week


For those of you upset over the cover of the New Yorker Magazine by Barry Blitt entitled "Politics of Fear" - here is a rebuttal cartoon by Horsey.

Gotta love it. The Constitution in the fireplace is a nice touch, don'tcha think?

Seeing as I don't like either candidate, this gave me a hearty laugh.

Ah, what would we do without satire.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Bank Panic In California


Oh this doesn't sound good at all.
The Online International Herald Tribune reports that people stood in line for hours yesterday in California seeking to get their money out of some troubled banks. The banking sector is taking a real beating even as politicians and banking leaders are seeking to quell the stormy waters with calming words and emergency financial rescue measures.

Some people aren't buying it though. They want to be sure their money is safe.
Investors are worried, and banks are on Wall Street's lists for closure or even seizure by the government. The financial triage has begun, as the word is that the smaller banks will be allowed to fail and the bigger guys will get help.
"We have seen a 'too big, too important to fail' instance," said William Gross, the chief investment officer of the bond fund Pimco. "The market wonders: which institution is too small to bail out? Where is the dividing line? They seem to have picked on the regional banks as potential candidates to be the ones too small to bail out." ...

"It's about to start getting real bad," said Christopher Whalen, managing director at Institutional Risk Analytics. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, he said, should just move on with the process and "close not just one but a half dozen institutions at the same time."
FDIC insures accounts of $100,000 or less but that's not stopping people from trying to get their money out of troubled banks. The thing is, that for the most part, this list of troubled banks is being kept secret. Word is that "Banks in Colorado, Maryland, Georgia and California top privately-prepared lists of troubled banks being circulated on Wall Street and in Washington."

Foreign investors are probably a bit concerned as well, since they have been buying up large stakes in these US banks and helping to bail them out.

Then their are other foreigners who are trying to get their money out of US banks and into something else as confidence in the US dollar is getting more and more shaky.

Some reports say we are on the precipice of a global economic crisis. With so much tied into the American economy it's no surprise. As far as I am concerned, the Federal Reserve and our monetary policies have been disastrous. They allowed our dollar to sink and crash. They allowed easy credit to people who shouldn't have received it and they let the government bail out companies that should have failed because of their poor practices. This did not happen over night either. To top it all off, our current crop of presidential candidates are clueless and certainly bring no solutions to the problems, because they defer to the people like Fed Chair Bernanke, who is driving this bus. I'll say it again: Congressman Ron Paul was right regarding the US dollar and monetary policy. Unfortunately no one was listening.

One commenter on one of the banking articles that I perused today struck me as an interesting and wry spin on this whole banking mess: "most people aren't worried - they are already poor".

Looks like they may get a lot poorer.

But let's get to something that is more on the minds of most Americans....
What is Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt going to name the twins?

Monday, July 14, 2008

Freddie And Fannie - Another Government House Of Cards


People should have listened to Ron Paul even as late as last year (Nov 2007). He knew what was coming. Oh yeah, but he's the "nutjob".
The collapse of the housing market has served as a catalyst for the economy's latest bust. For years the federal government has made it one of its prime aims to encourage homeownership among people who otherwise would not be able to afford homes. Various federal mortgage programs through the FHA, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac have distorted the normal workings of the housing market.

The implicit government backing of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac provides investors an incentive to provide funds to Fannie and Freddie that otherwise would have been put to use in other sectors of the economy. It was this flood of investor capital that helped to fuel the housing bubble.

Legislation such as the Zero Downpayment Act and the misnamed American Dream Downpayment Act made it possible for people who could not afford down payments on houses to receive assistance from the federal government, or even to pay no down payment at all, courtesy of the taxpayers. The requirement of a down payment has always helped to ascertain the ability of a buyer to pay off a mortgage. It requires the buyer to show hard work and thrift, the ability to delay present consumption in order to make a larger acquisition in the future.

When this requirement is minimized or eliminated, you introduce a new class of homebuyers, people who are unable to budget and save for the purchase of a home, or who should wait for a few years until they have saved enough to purchase a home. Federal policies have encouraged investors, lenders, and brokers to cater to these people, so it is no surprise that market actors came up with ever more sophisticated means of bringing these people into the real estate market.
I hope you'll read the rest of his analysis, as well as what he had to say back in 2003. He has always said that the Federal Reserve would cause this train wreck. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, back more than $4 trillion dollars in mortgages, and if they go under then we will see an unprecedented taxpayer-funded bailout the likes of which will make the Bear Stearns et al., bailout look like chump change.



Fannie Mae backs $2.6 trillion worth of single-family home loans, and yet the company has only $42 billion of capital (according to their SEC filing). Freddie Mac has $2.1 trillion in mortgages, and their capital to cover that is a similar $40 billion. If those loans fail, and many of them are risky loans, both company's capital could be decimated. Since they are guaranteed by the US government, guess who foots the bill. You and I will be covering all of that red ink, because again....They are too big to fail. Both are swimming in losses and foreclosures just like some of the other banking firms that started this house of cards to tumble down.

This is a very bad omen for this economy, and even though Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson is coming to the rescue with some dough, there is much damage that has already been done. His $15 billion dollar injection of capital into Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is hoped to head this avalanche off at the pass, but Citigroup is expected to reveal further writedowns of about $8 billion with its second-quarter results, and Merrill Lynch is forecast to report writedowns of some $4 billion. It doesn't look good at all. No doubt we'll be bailing them out as well.

The problem is that houses were allowed to be purchased by people who just couldn't afford them. Higher energy prices, taxes, and food prices were the straws breaking this camel's back, and now these mortgage companies are swimming in red ink.

So now we have the potential for runs on banks, skittish foreign investment and all the financial mischief that comes with it all. It's going to affect everything.

Ron Paul has been preaching sound monetary policy for years and no one has listened, because he's the nutjob.

Maybe Ron Paul needs that Verizon guy...."Can you hear me now"? or how about this new ad: "Got Gold?"



OT:
The media pretty much ignored the R3volution march in Washington DC this weekend ... and by the way, speaking of revolutions: Happy Bastille Day

Friday, July 11, 2008

Obama Says "Learn Spanish"


Mark Whittington wrote in Associated Content:
Barack Obama recently confirmed why many people find him off-putting when he admonished Americans to learn Spanish as a second language. At the same time he dismissed the idea that there was a problem with immigrants not learning English.

"Instead of worrying about whether immigrants can learn English -- they'll learn English -- you need to make sure your child can speak Spanish," Obama said at a recent campaign event in Georgia, according to a CNN clip posted on YouTube. Then he went on to scold Americans for their alleged lack of multi lingual skills. "It's embarrassing when Europeans come over here, they all speak English, they speak French, they speak German. And then we go over to Europe and all we can say is merci beaucoup."
Sounds like Barack is demeaning Americans again. He must be rereading his copy of "The Ugly American".

Here's the video:



Will Barack be speaking German when he visits Germany? What's he doing campaigning in Germany anyway? I just hope he won't be telling everyone he's a jelly doughnut like JFK did ("Ich bin ein Berliner" - Kennedy should have said "Ich bin Berliner" to mean "I am a person from Berlin." By adding the indefinite article ein, his statement implied he was a non-human Berliner, thus "I am a jelly doughnut")

Pocket translators and other communication aides are always good when you travel and then you can say more than just "merci beaucoups". People appreciate when you make an effort to speak the local language no matter where you go - even to Canada "aay".

I agree that in the pursuit of being a more well rounded individual that people ought to be able to communicate in one or more different languages... but it is silly to say we should all learn to speak one specific one over another. Chinese is becoming a useful language to know and so is Arabic. So what's the deal with pushing Spanish? Sounds like a move by Barack Obama to pander to the Hispanic voters in this country.

As for why Europeans learn to speak English...it's maybe because the European Union (EU) is composed of 27 member states and the total English speaking population of the combined territories is 229,850,000 including 61,850,000 native speakers and 168,000,000 non-native speakers. They have to communicate with their own members. Plus if anyone wants to transact business with the financial and business powerhouses of the UK, Canada, the USA or Australia, then English is primarily the way to do it. (Checkout the world's English speakers on Wiki)

Spanish is no doubt a popular language as well.
Castilian, usually known as Spanish, which is spoken in all the national territory, Equatorial Guinea, the Sahara, Central and South America ,except Brazil and the Guyanas, and parts of the United States and the Philippines, is the fourth language in the world in terms of the numbers of speakers; over 330 million.
Other studies about language usage and popularity show that Chinese, English and Spanish and Hindi are the top languages used in the world...

So yes, your child should learn another language... but not necessarily Spanish.

Then of course then there's Esperanto.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

WALL-E : Not Really A Children's Film


Beware - it's not a cute little ET type film... it's environmentalist, anticapitalist, and antitechnological propaganda. It's aimed at brainwashing our kids too.

This brilliant critique by Gennady Stolyarov II, on the Mises website really hit the nail on the head.

If you don't read anything else this week - you have to read this article.

Here's an excerpt:
Virtually no one today who romanticizes the "good old days" of traditional agriculture recognizes how nasty, brutish, and short life under such conditions had been for millennia. Once the first industrial factories opened — with their long hours, dangerous equipment, and meager pay — people flocked to them in droves, because the factory conditions (including the sanitation provided and wages paid) were greatly preferable to those of toiling virtually all day on the traditional farm.

The creators of WALL-E, sitting in their comfortable Hollywood studios, did a tremendous disservice to the civilization that made their work and high standards of living possible. They glorified a lifestyle that would likely have killed them — and countless others — had it actually been revived.
Yes you see, there is a movement afoot to vilify big business, big oil, and any big money making corporations. Never mind that businessmen keep people working and earning - and produce goods and services that have made American standard of living so incredibly wonderful. Many of the people we call impoverished in this country still have cell phones and cable TV. Compare that to the real poverty in 3rd world countries... there is no comparison. We live quite well here. We even demand to live quite well here. Living well has become possible because of technology, because of businessmen who took risks to bring goods to market and because of investment.

Are some businesses ruthless and not very good corporate citizens? Sure. Are some businesses greedy? Sure. But you'd better believe that people would still be driving buggies and doing everything the hard way if there weren't money to be made by making improvements. But the market deals with bad businesses and bad businessmen as well. People have a choice to patronize businesses that they feel treat their workers better or give back to the community or don't test on animals. We see it everyday, and businesses are marketing those attributes as well as their product. We also see the market forcing adjustments on businesses like McDonalds... for example, people are demanding healthier foods and if companies like McDonalds want to stay in business they will respond to those consumer demands. That's how it works. We are seeing more organic and "healthy foods" now than ever before in the market place. It's when there is no competition or when government intervenes and the market is manipulated that we fall into trouble. Businesses can be punished for not doing the right things. That's what boycotting their goods and services is all about. That's how the market works.

Capitalism has contributed to the greatness of this country. Making money is a good thing. Tapping into a market - bringing something that people want to the market is what it is all about. That's why Socialism and Communism don't work - it takes away incentives. It gives people less choices. It makes the government your parent. Even China has begun to embrace capitalism and investment because they know that without incentive and profit an economy stagnates. A planned economy creates slavery and sameness and stagnation. Capitalism creates ingenuity and the incentives to solve problems. Technology is created that fulfills a need. A case in point is the emergence of all sorts of technologies to tackle our energy problems.

The Global warming Al Gore crowd seeks to punish people who employ technology and make advances in our culture. They'd have us weeding the fields by hand and reading by candlelight. Oh correction... they would have everyone who isn't elite living like 18th century peasants with tiny carbon footprints, while they enjoy their own jets and mansions.

WALL-E is not a child's film - it's social commentary and meant very much to influence developing minds into thinking technology and big business is bad.

Just thought you should know.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

FISA Bill To Be Voted On In US Senate Today - Can You See What Is Before Us?


Today, July 8th, the Senate will consider an unconstitutional FISA bill that will let lawbreaking phone companies off the hook. These companies handed over huge amounts of information to the government, representing potentially millions of emails and phone calls and more, without getting a warrant. This bill would prevent any telecom company from being prosecuted against the trampling of our 4th amendment rights. Sure, the average person doesn't have anything to hide, but that does not mean we should give the ability of the government to listen in on our conversations and read our mail! Private information can and will be misused, you can take that to the bank!

Without enough public outcry, the Senate will let these telecommunication companies get away with this and allow our government and future presidents and their administrations to keep spying on Americans without getting a warrant.

Warrantless wiretapping is illegal and should remain illegal. They also represent nothing more than government sanctioned fishing expeditions.

How did your House representative vote on this bill back in June?

Now the bill is up for a vote in the US Senate today...
Please know that Senator Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, will be introducing an amendment to H.R. 6304, that will put at least some constitutionally protective provisions back into the FISA process. Specter is well acquainted with the Constitution and has spent many years as an influential member of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Please call Senator Arlen Specter's Office at 202-224-4254 and thank him for offering his announced constitutionally oriented amendment to H.R. 6304 and then Please call your Senator today and ask that they support Spector's Constitutionally oriented amendment to H.R. 6304, or vote against this FISA bill.



For the record: John McCain supports this bill and Barack Obama pretty much said he will support this bill for warrantless wiretaps as well (which for Obama is a clear flip-flop of his previous position on this bill)

There are some interesting comments made by the Philadelphia Independent Media
Perhaps Rep. Jay Inslee says it best, “This bill says if the telecommunication companies violated America’s privacy, willfully, knowingly, knowing it was illegal, we are giving them immunity. Where is the excuse for that?” This piece of legislation seems to set another dangerous precedent; does every company that knowingly commits a crime get retroactive immunity? And what about We-the-people? Do we get retroactive immunity from our wrongdoing?

This law virtually neuters the legislative and judicial branches of our government, giving almost dictatorial powers to the Executive branch, chipping away even more of our longstanding checks and balances. When will it stop? When will the people understand that much more of this will leave us with NO rights at all? I must ask the question, for whom is this administration, and Congress, setting up a dictatorship?

As if HR 6304 was not bad enough, it is actually just the last bill in a long line of abusive governmental rhetoric aimed at forcing US Citizens into giving up something that cannot be given, our unalienable rights! The newly released film, Washington, You’re Fired, provides a summary of the past seven years of heinous legislation handed to an out-of-control Administration by a Congress that cannot abide by its Oath of Office. This documentary is creating a revolution in the legislation information arena by proving to be an excellent tool for a quick non-partisan political education.

November is coming and not only do we elect a new President, but ALL the seats in the House of Representatives are up for re-election. All of them. It is time to send a clear message to our Representatives that we will no longer take their rabid abuse. It is time, as Senator Obama has stated, for change. I am quite sure, however, that the change of which I am thinking has NOTHING to do with his idea. We need to take a good, hard look of the members of the House of Representatives. Those found lacking should be shown the door, post haste! We have no more time to wait for someone to take a stand there. While we wait, the current administration is getting away with murder, literally and figuratively. It is time for this travesty to stop!
In this upcoming election in November - vote for people who will uphold our Constitutional rights. The two main party labels are virtually meaningless. And in fact in this so-called Two-Party system you now have a choice between a Progressive/Socialist Democrat (Obama) and a Republican In Name Only (McCain). McCain has been more liberal than Conservative, stood for amnesty for illegal aliens (McCain Kennedy), global warming legislation (McCain Lieberman), and loss of freedom of speech (McCain Feingold) as well as other horrible bills. These two men are awful choices for this country! One will move us much much closer to Socialism and levels of taxation that will be destructive to this nation, and the other will continue to meddle in foreign affairs and continue previous policies which have been failures. Both do not address monetary policy at all, which has been the crux of a falling dollar and higher prices on everything. You also cannot believe anything Obama says as he tries to come to "the Center" as a move to appeal to moderate voters. Hope and Change has really become the usual Smoke and Mirrors.

People in this country are all under the illusion that you have to vote for a Democrat or a Republican in order for your vote "to count" - the problem is that neither party has done anything to protect our rights - instead they have passed numerous bills which have eroded our rights in the name of "safety" . Think about it:
"The USA PATRIOT Act, the Military Commissions Act, and the John Warner Defense Act have been an assault on the U.S. Constitution and have weakened the liberties that Americans once thought they could never lose. The loss of Habeas Corpus and Posse Comitatus, coupled with a new definition of “torture” are just the tip of the Orwellian iceberg. If enacted, HR 1955 (S. 1959) will for the first time put “thought crime” laws on the books, robbing citizens of their right to freedom of conscience thought. " - Washington You're Fired
Perhaps we need to start looking to third party candidates and stop voting for the "lesser of two evils"... because the lesser of two evils is still evil. More importantly, we also really need to elect people to Congress who are committed to restoring the Constitution and our rights.

Monday, July 7, 2008

David Aron 2008



David Aron 2008 has a website now. Actually, it's been a work in progress for a couple of weeks. The campaign has started and a great fundraiser is planned for this weekend: BBQ in the Park.

Sunday, July 13, 2008
Noon - 3 PM
Brooksvale Park, Hamden, CT

At the Picnic Pavilion, Rain or Shine
$15 per Adult, Children eat FREE!

- Fun Activities!
- Loads of Prizes!
- Great Food and Friends!

If you are interested in attending this great event you can print out this form and send it in

David Aron also has a video up on his website explaining why he isn't taking State funds to finance his campaign.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy Independence Day!

ca. 1786-1819 --- by John Trumbull


This from a Declaration of Independence website:
Drafted by Thomas Jefferson between June 11 and June 28, 1776, the Declaration of Independence is at once the nation's most cherished symbol of liberty and Jefferson's most enduring monument. Here, in exalted and unforgettable phrases, Jefferson expressed the convictions in the minds and hearts of the American people. The political philosophy of the Declaration was not new; its ideals of individual liberty had already been expressed by John Locke and the Continental philosophers. What Jefferson did was to summarize this philosophy in "self-evident truths" and set forth a list of grievances against the King in order to justify before the world the breaking of ties between the colonies and the mother country.
“Under the law of nature, all men are born free, every one comes into the world with a right to his own person, which includes the liberty of moving and using it at his own will. This is what is called personal liberty, and is given him by the Author” - Thomas Jefferson

There are some more great quotes about Jefferson's thoughts regarding liberty at the Mises website.

Make it a tradition and read the Declaration of Independence to your family today:

IN CONGRESS, JULY 4, 1776
The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:

For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:

For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies

For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.

— John Hancock

New Hampshire:
Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton

Massachusetts:
John Hancock, Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry

Rhode Island:
Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery

Connecticut:
Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott

New York:
William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris

New Jersey:
Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark

Pennsylvania:
Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross

Delaware:
Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean

Maryland:
Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton

Virginia:
George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton

North Carolina:
William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn

South Carolina:
Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton

Georgia:
Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Here are some facts from ushistory.org

Finally - From last year's post - Would YOU have signed the Declaration of Independence?

Enjoy the day, and dedicate yourself this year to help in efforts aimed at protecting our liberty and freedom which seem to be slipping away. It is just too important for us to allow the Congress, the Courts, and the Executive Branch to usurp our rights. Consider joining efforts like the Campaign For Liberty, or similar movements that support the Constitution and our Constitutional rights.