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Practically Speaking

Kyle and her husband moved to Brookfield in 1986. She became active in local politics and started blogging in 2004. Her focus is primarily on local issues but often includes state and national topics, too. Kyle looks at things from the taxpayers' perspective in a creative, yet down to earth way, addressing them from a practical point of view.

Blog articles and links: budget, free speech,samesex benies,embyonic stem,gaymarriage

Blogging, Conservatives, Creation Science / Intelligent Design, Culture, Health care, Homosexual agenda, Media/ Talk radio, President Obama, Pro Life / Pro Abortion, TAXES, Truth, Veterans

 Heritage foundation: Accelerating us off a cliff

http://mail.google.com/mail/?shva=1#all/12014af38cb402dc (direct link availbale just click title when on page)

Speaking to House Democrats at their Kingsmill Resort & Spa retreat last month, President Barack Obama defended his economic stimulus plan, claiming: “[We] are not going to get relief by turning back to the same policies that for the last eight years doubled the national debt and threw our economy into a tailspin. … If you’re headed for a cliff, you’ve got to change direction.” Our public policy definitely needs a change in direction. But the Obama Administration’s budget is not a change in direction. Instead, it is a foot on the accelerator taking us off that cliff. Consider:

 

Recent Entries

Obama Should Look to Sweden for Education, Not Banks
 
Employee “No” Choice Act: Increasing the Fed’s Role, Again
 
AIG, Bonuses and Bankruptcy
 
Wasting Homeland Security Dollars
 
Cost and Consequences of Government Health-Care Decision Making
  • President Bush expanded the federal budget by a historic $700 billion through 2008. President Obama would add another $1 trillion.

  • President Bush began a string of expensive finan­cial bailouts. President Obama is accelerating that course.

  • President Bush created a Medicare drug entitle­ment that will cost an estimated $800 billion in its first decade. President Obama has proposed a $634 billion down payment on a new govern­ment health care fund.

  • President Bush increased federal education spending 58 percent faster than inflation. Presi­dent Obama would double it.

  • President Bush became the first President to spend 3 percent of GDP on federal antipoverty programs. President Obama has already in­creased this spending by 20 percent.

  • President Bush tilted the income tax burden more toward upper-income taxpayers. President Obama would continue that trend.

  • President Bush presided over a $2.5 trillion increase in the public debt through 2008. Setting aside 2009 (for which Presidents Bush and Obama share responsibility for an additional $2.6 trillion in public debt), President Obama’s budget would add $4.9 trillion in public debt from the beginning of 2010 through 2016.

    The only sharp break President Obama takes away from President Bush is the amount of money he takes from the American people. President Bush reduced taxes by approximately $2 trillion; President Obama has proposed raising taxes by $1.4 trillion. Yet even after taking $1.4 trillion more out of the private sector, Obama’s budget still would double the public debt level to $15.4 trillion. Between 2008 and 2013, the budget will add $5.7 trillion ($48,000 per U.S. household) in new government debt. The annual interest on this debt would nearly equal the entire U.S. defense budget by 2019.

    How does the Obama budget raise taxes by $1.4 trillion yet still double the national debt? By exploding government spending. Domestic discretionary spend­ing (including stimulus funds) has been hiked over 80 percent over 2008 levels. Even if we set aside the stimulus spending, and take the Obama Administration’s word that all of that spending will be temporary, the expansion of government under Obama’s budget is historic. In 2007, before the recession, Washington spent $24,172 per household. By 2019, the President’s budget would spend $32,463 per household—an inflation-adjusted $8,000 per household expansion of gov­ernment.

    Summarizing his findings Heritage Foundation Senior Policy Analyst Brian Riedl writes: “President Obama has framed his budget as a break from the “failed policies” of the Bush Admin­istration. Actually, his budget doubles down on President George W. Bush’s borrow, spend, and bail­out policies.”

  • http://blog.heritage.org/2009/03/16/morning-bell-the-durbin-doctrine-assault-on-free-speech/

     

    Following a premeditated White House campaign to demonize Rush Limbaugh, Newsweek aided the left’s “Hush Rush” campaign with a cover story pushing for Rush to be silenced. Now Rush can handle criticism from the White House and Newsweek just fine. But there was also a little noticed vote in the Senate late last month that could enable the left to accomplish by government regulation what they could never accomplish with actual debate.

    During the debate over the unconstitutional bill that would give the District of Columbia a vote in the House of Representatives, Sens. Jim DeMint (R-SC) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) each sponsored amendments with major implications for the First Amendment. DeMint’s amendment banned the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) from reinstituting the Fairness Doctrine which, prior to 1987, was used by the government to stifle free speech on our nation’s airwaves. DeMint’s amendment passed 87-11. Score one for free speech.

    However, Durbin’s amendment also passed, although by a much narrower 57-41 margin. And what does Durbin’s amendment do? It forces the FCC to “take actions to encourage and promote diversity in communication media ownership and to ensure that broadcast station licenses are used in the public interest.” In other words, Durbin wants to bring the wonders of government enforced affirmative action to our nation’s airwaves. Sen. James Inhofe warns: “The revocation of broadcaster licenses [under the Durbin Doctrine] is a real possibility, which at the very least will threaten the willingness of broadcasters to appeal to conservative listeners.”

    The true intention of the Durbin Doctrine could not be more clear. Its language is modeled after a Center for American Progress report that aims to fix “The Structural Imbalance of Political Talk Radio.” And just two years ago, Durbin told The Hill: “It’s time to reinstitute the Fairness Doctrine. I have this old-fashioned attitude that when Americans hear both sides of the story, they’re in a better position to make a decision.”

    Durbin’s commitment to squelching free speech has not diminished at all since that 2007 statement. But Durbin has gotten smarter. He knows that reinstating the old Fairness Doctrine is a non-starter so he has come up with a new but equally pernicious law that will accomplish the exact same thing. Conservatives need to wise up in the fight for free speech. The Fairness Doctrine is dead. The real threat is the Durbin Doctrine.

    Quick Hits:

     http://www.cnsnews.com/public/content/article.aspx?RsrcID=45068 Obama Backs Health Benefits for Same-Sex Partners of Federal Employees
    Monday, March 16, 2009
    By Susan Jones, Senior Editor
    (CNSNews.com) - The recently passed $676-billion omnibus spending bill includes language urging the federal government’s Office of Personnel Management to "consider" federal health benefits for same-sex domestic partners of federal employees.
     
    On Friday, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs was asked about that recommendation, something the Obama administration supports, he indicated.
     
    Gibbs said President Obama’s position on benefits for same-sex couples “remains the same” as it was during the campaign. “The president would work with Congress in order to…institute what he promised he’d do in the campaign,” Gibbs said at the Friday press briefing.
     
    During the presidential campaign, Obama said that while he does not support same-sex marriage, he does support repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act, which defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman in federal law.
     
    In an Aug. 1, 2008 letter to a Boston-based homosexual advocacy group, the Family Equality Council, Obama specifically pledged to use the presidency to overturn DOMA – and pledged his support for homosexual “families” and efforts to totally redefine marriage.
     
    Under DOMA, the federal government may provide health benefits only to opposite-sex partners of married employees.
     
    In December 2007, Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.) introduced a bill that would have provided a federal employee and his or her domestic partner with the same benefits available to a married federal employee and his or her spouse. Barack Obama, a U.S. senator at the time, was a co-sponsor of Lieberman’s bill, which died without coming to a vote.
     
    Lieberman and Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) reportedly plan to introduce similar bills in the current Congress.
     
    Under Lieberman’s 2007 legislation, same-sex domestic partners of federal employees would have been eligible to participate in health benefits, long-term care, Family and Medical Leave, and federal retirement benefits.

    Federal employees and their domestic partners also would have been subject to the same responsibilities that apply to married employees and their spouses, such as anti-nepotism rules and financial disclosure requirements.
     
    The Office of Personnel Management has estimated that the cost of health benefits for domestic partners of federal employees would be $670 million over ten years.
     
    Earlier this month, President Obama named John Berry as his choice for OPM director. According to the Web site GayPolitics.com, Berry “would be the first openly gay director of OPM and one of the highest-ranking openly gay presidential appointees in history.”

    http://www.icr.org/article/4566/ Obama orders the destruction of Human Embyos

    Obama Orders the Destruction of Human Embryos

    In a significant move to distance himself from the moral conservatives of the country, President Barack Obama on March 9 ordered that federal money (taxpayer money) be used to promote medical research using harvested embryonic stem cells from humans.

    Dr. Randy Guliuzza, a medical doctor and National Representative at the Institute for Creation Research, commented this week on the Obama decision:

    The consequences of the president’s decision are two-fold. First, government is now more empowered to destroy human life for “scientific” progress. Will research on human embryos result in advances in medicine? Possibly, but the fruit of stem cell research using cells safely harvested from umbilical cords or adults is already being used to save lives. Destroying the unborn is both unnecessary and morally reprehensible.

    In short, President Obama’s reversal of the embryonic stem cell ban sentences these embryos to the category of disposable life, a clear indicator that the president values the free exercise of science over the life of the unborn.

    But there is much more to the president’s decision. Dr. Guliuzza continued:

    Second, this announcement is very likely designed to be a sideshow, a distraction to draw attention away from a much larger agenda he is pushing on the American people: empowering an atheist scientific elite who conduct research by consensus. Studies have shown that a tiny minority of scientists profess belief in God, only 7 percent among members of the National Academy of Sciences. The president clearly knows that his emphasis on “scientific integrity” will be governed by atheists.

    Of course, this is in contrast to the approximately 80 percent of Americans who profess belief in God, and the 66 percent who believe God created the world in 6 days about 10,000 years ago.1

    The consequences of the president’s decision are staggering. Dr. Guliuzza concluded:

    With that kind of power, death to embryos is just the first step and who knows where it will end?

    Reference

    1. Gallup Poll: Two Thirds of Americans Believe God Created Them. ICR News. Posted on icr.org June 12, 2007.

    * Mr. Ford is Executive Editor at the Institute for Creation Research.

    > http://blog.heritage.org/2009/03/06/top-5-most-audacious-health-care-statements/

     

    President Barack Obama’s speech at yesterday’s White House Health Care Forum included a number of statements that are either false or highly misleading. Unfortunately yesterday was not the first time we heard these statements from the White House. Some fact checking is in order:

    1. President Obama said: “The cost of health care now causes a bankruptcy in America every 30 seconds. By the end of the year, it could cause 1.5 million Americans to lose their homes.

    ABC News reports:

    The figure comes from a 2005 Harvard University study saying that 54 percent of bankruptcies in 2001 were caused by health expenses. We reviewed it internally and knocked it down at the time; an academic reviewer did the same in 2006. Recalculating Harvard’s own data, he came up with a far lower figure – 17 percent.

    The extrapolation of Harvard’s data to “a bankruptcy every 30 seconds,” which Obama also mentioned in his address to a joint session of Congress last month, comes, per the White House, from a 2005 Washington Post op-ed by Prof. Elizabeth Warren, a co-author of the Harvard paper. Fact-check.org has noted that even using Harvard’s numbers, it’s more like a bankruptcy every minute; indeed if you add up all bankrputcies in a year you barely get one every 30 seconds. (I’ve e-mailed Warren for comment.) But more to the point is that the Harvard data are clearly inflated, or at best, mischaracterized.

    2. President Obama said: “Medicare costs are consuming our federal budget; I don’t have to tell members of Congress this. Medicaid is overwhelming our state budgets; I don’t need to tell governors and state legislatures that.”

    This statement is true, but since being sworn in President Obama has only made the problem worse by expanding Medicaid eligibility. In fact Obama’s health care plan includes a Medicare for all option that will explode government health care costs.

    3. President Obama said: “I know that more will be required, but this is a significant down payment that’s fully paid for, does not add one penny to our deficit.”

    We’re confused … is his health care plan “fully paid for” and “does not add one penny to our deficit” or “will more be required.” And if “more” is required, will that also be “fully paid for” or will pennies be added to our deficit? And if not deficit spending, where will the money come from?

    4. President Obama said: “So if somebody has insurance they like, they should be able to keep that insurance. If they have a doctor that they like, they should be able to keep their doctor. They should just pay less for the care that they receive.”

    We agree with these goals 100%. Problem is the government run health plan in Obama’s larger health care scheme will force people out of their current private plans and into government programs that many doctor’s refuse to participate in.

    5. President Obama said: “That’s why we asked concerned citizens like the folks on this stage to organize open meetings across America where people could air their views. As Travis said, more than 3,000 meetings were held in all 50 states and D.C.; more than 30,000 people attended.”

    These “open meetings” where held in the dead of winter, many of them in the week between Christmas and New Years. Only the most devoted the most ardent supporters of Obama’s plan showed up. The 30,000 people that attended are not representative of the American people in anyway, and the information the received at the forums was riddled with false facts.

     http://www.frc.org/washingtonupdate/eminent-domain

    Family Research Council

     Eminent DOMAin?

     
    March 13, 2009 - Friday

    Eminent DOMAin?

    In 2004, a younger Barack Obama sat down with a reporter from the Windy City Times and made no secret of his disgust over laws that protect traditional marriage. "When Members of Congress passed the Defense of Marriage Act, they were not interested in strengthening family values or protecting civil liberties. They were only interested in perpetuating division... Despite my own feelings about an abhorrent law, the realities of modern politics persist."

    If the latest reports are any indication, those "realities" are about to face their biggest test yet. Two federal appeals court judges in California have launched a fierce strike on DOMA, ordering the federal government in two separate cases to disregard its own law and provide health benefits for the same-sex partners of federal employees. The rulings, which smack of judicial activism, are a direct challenge to the Defense of Marriage Act which defines the word "spouse" as a person of the opposite sex. Initially, Uncle Sam's HR department--the federal Office of Personnel Management (OPM)--fired back, directing insurers not to comply with the court orders because they violate federal law. Now, the decision to act may have fallen in President Obama's lap, leaving him to choose between ignoring the court and implementing his extreme social policy.

    Although the President's tone may have drastically changed since 2004, his agenda has not. Even the White House website hints at where the administration will lean. "Obama also believes we need to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act and enact legislation that would ensure that the 1,100+ federal legal rights and benefits currently provided on the basis of marital status..."

    With John Berry, the first openly homosexual Director of OPM, on one side and dipping approval ratings on the other, Obama will have to decide if he's willing to make such a high-stakes gamble with the public's goodwill. Of course, there are plenty of reasons not to tamper with DOMA. Apart from being morally challenged, the idea is bad on economic grounds. Estimates put the cost of federal same-sex partner benefits at roughly $670 million over the next decade.

    If the President wants to avoid a messy political battle and steer clear of violating the grassroots' trust, the White House has plenty of precedent to lean on in refusing the order. In 2007, the Department of Labor withstood a similar assault and won the right to refuse these same benefits on the grounds that DOMA bars the government from recognizing same-sex "marriage." At its heart, the debate over what constitutes marriage should be a matter of congressional and voter review-not judicial fiat. Laws like DOMA cannot be subject to the whims of two liberal judges, else--like marriage--those laws would soon hold no meaning.

    To voice your concerns, call the White House switchboard at 202-456-1111 and ask President Obama to respect the values of mainstream America. For more on this subject, tune in to my interview on CNN's "AC 360" with Anderson Cooper, tonight at 10:00 p.m. EST.

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