Archive for December, 2012


Monday December 17th, 2012   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 10:00am PDT   •   4 Comments

Jaime Avila Jr., who purchased guns illegally as part of a government sting operation, has been sentenced to 57 months in prison. That prompts a meditation on Operation Fast and Furious and the federal bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms. Fast and Furious began with the belief of U.S. President Barack Obama and Felipe…
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Spending Is the Problem

Friday December 14th, 2012   •   Posted by Craig Eyermann at 5:52am PDT   •   3 Comments

Just in case there was any doubt that excessive spending is the federal government’s real problem in running up the national debt, former vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan tweeted the following graphic projections: The revenue projections for President Obama’s desired higher tax rates on top income earners look pretty optimistic, so there should be a…
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Opaque Feds Back Snitch Surge

Thursday December 13th, 2012   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 12:02pm PDT   •   2 Comments

The federal National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) seeks new regulations requiring all automobile manufacturers to include “black box” data recorders in all new cars and light trucks. Federal Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said the regulations will “make our vehicles and our roadways even safer,” but that may well be doubted. The data recorders do…
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Make Your Own Deficit Reduction Plan

Tuesday December 11th, 2012   •   Posted by Craig Eyermann at 4:43am PDT   •   3 Comments

How would you change today’s federal government spending and taxes to balance the budget? The Wall Street Journal has come out with an online tool where you can do just that, selecting from a menu of prepared options that have been discussed in the public debate. There are three screens of options to consider….
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Spies and Leviathan

Monday December 10th, 2012   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 11:01am PDT   •   1 Comment

The Pentagon plans to add the Defense Clandestine Service to the nation’s Intelligence Community (IC). This is being billed as an advance in national security but it shapes up as a costly bureaucratic turf war that could leave the nation less secure. The current IC boasts 17 member agencies: Air Force Intelligence Army Intelligence…
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Power Play is Feds’ Oyster

Thursday December 6th, 2012   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 8:19am PDT   •   5 Comments

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar is allowing the lease of the Drakes Bay Oyster Company to expire. This will eliminate an oyster farm from the Point Reyes National Seashore and supposedly create a pristine marine wilderness. The Sierra Club, the National Wildlife Federation, the National Parks Conservation Association, and California Senator Barbara Boxer applauded Salazar’s…
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What Will Your Paycheck Look Like After the Fiscal Cliff?

Wednesday December 5th, 2012   •   Posted by Craig Eyermann at 5:14am PDT   •   2 Comments

Timely Political Calculations: Assuming that President Obama continues his policy of not negotiating in good faith with U.S. congressional leaders on federal budget matters, what might your paycheck look like in 2013 after President Bush’s 2003 income tax rate cuts expire? That matters to you because if you earn either wages or a salary…
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When Shrinkage Means Expansion

Monday December 3rd, 2012   •   Posted by K. Lloyd Billingsley at 9:33am PDT   •   0 Comments

The election is over and as the nation advances toward the “fiscal cliff” many assume that the mortgage and financial crises are over. Some review is clearly in order. In September 2008 the federal government took over the mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. During the 2012 election campaign, the U.S. Treasury Department…
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Bring Back the Bowles-Simpson Debt Plan?

Saturday December 1st, 2012   •   Posted by Craig Eyermann at 6:10am PDT   •   1 Comment

In late 2010, Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson, the chairmen of President Obama’s bipartisan National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, introduced a plan to reform both taxes and spending in Washington D.C. that would put the nation onto a path of balanced budgets and a falling national debt. At the time, the plan…
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