The Nacilbupera Guzzle

Whoever examines with attention the history of the dearths and famines … will find, I believe, that a dearth never has arisen from any combination among the inland dealers in corn, nor from any other cause but a real scarcity, occasioned sometimes perhaps, and in some particular places, by the waste of war, but in by far the greatest number of cases by the fault of the seasons; and that a famine has never arisen from any other cause but the violence of government attempting, by improper means, to remedy the inconveniences of a dearth. (Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations IV.5.44)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Provo City Council Meeting 12/6

Here are my thoughts on last nights Provo City Council meeting:

(1) A private non-profit group called the Utah Valley Earth Forum was allowed nearly 10 minutes to promote their environmental extremism agenda under the guise of given a Stewardship Award to Mayor Curtis.  The speaker touted the opt-out recycling program and the Switch-It program.  The group likes Curtis so much they even promote him on their front page.  Pretty disgusting stuff especially when considering citizens are only allowed 3 minutes.

(2) Pork-barrel parks scored big last night at the expense of citizen's pocketbooks.  Council approved 7-0 expansion of 3850N Timpview Park taking an understandable $170K from Park Impact Fees and an unacceptable expense of $170K from the general fund.  Also approved about half of a $90K appropriation for a pocket park 300W Center St.  Finally they took $0.5M from the savings in the Lakeview Park and instead of returning it to the citizens in from of Iprovo tax relief threw the money at the a Slate Canyon Trailhead project.

(3) Mayor got his rebranding pork approved 7-0 to the tune of a quarter million.  Mayor and some council have stated they had to spend the money in part because they felt a multicolored bar on the flag promoted the LGBT agenda.  Funny, to me a rainbow has always meant God's promise to Noah.  The logo update was sold as a "good investment" and the mayor commented on how all steamed he was just having visited all these major cities promoting Provo but couldn't announce his new $250K pet logo.  What a waste!  Take the citizen's money and flush it down the johns at city hall.  Additional note:  notice (left) the lack of communication in an attempt to abscond the dollar amount on the mayor's blog:  I posted a comment on 10/6 asking for this information and never got it.  I can post private subsequent private emails between me and the mayor in which I repeatedly asked for these dollar amounts and never got it either.

(4) Council Hall-Everett got one of the issues she has been advocating since back when the property tax hike was being discussed last summer:  $250K for wayfinding signage.  The amount is exorbitant and with a parking map available online a totally unnecessary expense for a city which just had to raise taxes in order to avoid bankruptcy from the Iprovo debt which fell back in its lap.  (Funny how those 20yr bonds come back to haunt you.  Good thing the city practices the teachings of the LDS church to "get out of debt and stay out of debt" NOT!!!)

(5) Mayor Curtis tried to pull a fast one by touting the fiscal responsibility of the city because of the poor condition of the carpet in council chambers.  In my comments I mentioned that this was not fair because the council has already appropriated the money for a huge upgrade to the council chambers.  Other members of council got fed up with public comment and either directly or indirectly insulted the citizenry for not having facts to back up their comments or for not attending all the budget meetings that they had (of course they're paid to do so, we're not).  One council member did apologize privately afterwards.  No one including new council Garrett showed any spine for taking a fiscally conservative approach to government; every single appropriation passed unanimously.

It's a sad day when the city government in Provo is as liberal as New York City.  Maybe it will help when we elect a new mayor who doesn't promote the agenda of his former Party:  big government, big spending, and massive tax increases.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Values Voter Summit Picks a New Presidential Staw Poll Winner

Ron Paul gave an amazing speech (transcript) at the Values Voter Summit, an organization of social conservatives.  It was unique among speeches I have heard from Rep. Paul, being structured around 1 Samuel 8 and how the people of Israel were admonished to not choose a king because they would lose their personal liberties.  Rep. Paul related that chapter to the king we currently have in Washington.  Rep Paul talked repeatedly about protection of the family as well as other social themes such as respect for life and avoidance of both personal and national debt.

As a social conservative and a defender of liberty, the speech resonated with me; I felt like I was listening to a good Sunday sermon by a noble preacher or an LDS Conference talk.  Apparently the voters at the Summit felt the same way giving Dr. Paul a first place finish with 37% of the vote, an amazing comeback from his dismal 16th place finish last year.

So what was the headline from the leftist media on the straw poll winner?  Unbelievably it's "GOP Values Voters say they’d back Mitt Romney".  Gov. Romney finished a dismal 6th place out of 8 with less than 5% of the vote.  Go figure.

Unrelated to the Summit but a recent speech which outlines Rep. Paul's core constitutional principles which I enjoyed was that to the National Press Club:

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Provo City's Unconstitutional Citation Fees

Not long ago, I received a parking violation for parking I what I thought was my own driveway with my Geo Metro on a Sunday night.  The '95 Metro hatchback--belonging to the shortest of classes of cars--was covering the thoroughfare of the sidewalk on our cul-de-sac in a quiet suburban Provo neighborhood.  The next morning to my astonishment, I discovered that even though passageway around the car had been left, a ticket had been issued at 2am at a time when no one walks the neighborhood.  The police officer issuing the citation did not attempt to notify me of the violation (I was home) nor was I aware of the Provo City code 9.31.010 (1) prohibiting such behavior.

Rather incensed, I decided I would protest the ticket in person but couldn't do so because my work schedule had me commuting out of the county for a couple of weeks.  When I took my ticket in to protest I discovered that my $30 parking violation had morphed into a $90 bill!  You see, according to Provo City, parking violations are designed to double after 5 days (days, not even business days mind you) and triple in 11 (see: Penalty Schedule). 

In the 8th Amendment of our Constitution we are protected against "excessive fines".  I would assert that Provo's doubling and tripling of a fine so quickly is the very thing against which the Constitution was written for to provide us protection.

In essence, fines should be commensurate to the crime.  By doubling any fine, the city is de facto arguing that the crime committed by not paying a citation in 5 days is equal to the crime itself.  By tripling the fine in 11 days, the city takes the stance that it is twice as bad not to pay the citation in 11 days than the original crime.  The stances Provo city is forced into by such an unconstitutional position is absurd.

Let's contrast the city's unconstitutional practice with other city practices of late fees which do not seem excessive (see Provo City Consolidated Fee Schedule):
  • Items checked out at the Provo library are not due for 3 weeks.  After that a 10-cent per diem charge incurs.
  • A Provo City Business license is obtained for $150-$475.  The late fee is $25.
  • Provo youth sports vary in cost but $30 is typical.  The late fee is $5.
In all the above cases, the resident has ample time to respond to the original charge whereas a traffic citation is due in 5 days.  What would be reasonable and indeed constitutional is to allow a citizen 30 days to pay a citation and then to impose a collection fee to cover the city's costs of sending out a collection notice. 

Other than other localities which abuse their citizens with similar unconstitutional excessive citation fees, there is no other example of any late fee doubling after 5 days.  Could one imagine doubling your income tax bill after 5 days?  Your property tax bill?  How about tripling your credit card late fee on the 11th day?  What if softball cost $90 because you were 11 days late?  Your triple your utility bill or the late fee on your rent?  These are so repulsive and intrusive into the freedoms we cherish.

Why then do we allow Provo City to shame the 8th Amendment to the Constitution and unecessarily place us in bondage through unconstitutional law?

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Paul Schools Santorum on Iran in GOP Debates

During Thursday's Ames, Iowa GOP debates, Rep. Ron Paul was questioned about his views on Iran.  He advocated lifting sanctions and letting Iran defend its borders instead of fighting endless wars and provoking through our actions other countries to war with us.  It was a classic noninterventionist, conservative argument, one our Founding Fathers would surely endorse.

But that wasn't good enough for Rick Santorum who verbally jumped out of turn in front of Herman Cain to defend his anti-Iran policy.  During Santorum's defense he claimed we had been at war with Iran since 1979; in turn Ron Paul corrected him claiming 1953.


As a student of history, I found it appropriate to share with you the truth in Dr. Paul's words.  For the vast majority of adulthood, the history lesson we remember and are told begins with the violent overthrow of a pro-American Iranian leader, the Shah, with the subsequent hostage taking of Americans at our embassy.  I remember those days well.  Yet most of us aren't quite old enough to remember a complex story of American interventionism gone awry.  Nor were the secret events of 1953 fully elucidated to the American public as they have been in more recent times.  Lets examine some history together and learn how events all across the globe impacted our relations with Iran.

During WWII, Venezuela passed the Hydrocarbons Act of 1943 which asserted that profits made from foreign oil companies had to be shared 50/50 with the state.  This precursor to oil nationalization was copied in 1950 by Saudia Arabia in its dealings with Aramco as King Ibn Saud achieved a similar agreement under the threat of nationalization.  Seeing successful profit-sharing results in other oil producing nations, the idea of nationalization grew wildly popular in Iran with regards to Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (AIOC, whom we know today as British Petroleum or BP) and its Abadan refinery at the time responsible for 20% of the world supply (Abadan is my sweetheart's birthplace so there is personal familiarity).  While the British slowly reacted to the profit-sharing demands, a group of radical Iranians terrorists lead by Navvab Safari and his secret society Fada'iyan-e Islam with a history of assassinations since 1946, assassinated the Prime Minister Haj Ali Razmara while praying in a mosque on March 7, 1951--just days after Razmara had spoken out against AOIC nationalization.  Razmara's assassination vaulted the issue into the Iranian parliament which days later voted for nationalization and a new pro-nationalization Prime Minister, Mohammad Mosaddegh.

This expropriation naturally resulted in an outcry from the British who blocked the Persian Gulf and succeed in dropping Iranian oil production by 95%.  After a period of time realizing that Mosaddegh would offer no recourse to the stolen assets, the British planned a coup using MI6.  As historian John W. Limbert points out in Chapter 3 of his work Negotiating with Iran: Wrestling the Ghosts of History (2009) with the UK under Socialist Party rule they hardly held the moral high ground:
Prime Minister Clement Attlee's socialist government, which had nationalized much of British heavy industry, could not well oppose the Iranian oil nationalization on principle. (p.72)
During 1951-2 both the UK and the US would change the party in control of leadership, first the UK choosing Prime Minister Winston Churchill and followed by US Churchill's wartime ally, Dwight Eisenhower.  Churchill began to lobby the US to assist in the coup playing on American fears that the UK might withdraw from the Korean War:
"Britain was supporting the Americans in Korea, [Churchill] reminded Truman, and had a right to expect Anglo-American unity on Iran." (Wikipedia, 1953 Iranian Coup D'├ętat quoting Stephen Kinzer: All the Shah's Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East Terror, John Wiley and Sons, 2003, p.145)
With the election of Eisenhower and installation in January of 1953, the new president authorized using the CIA to cosponsor the coup codenamed "Operation Ajax".  The coup then occurred on August 19, 1953.  Whereas pro-American Mosaddegh had been democratically elected, the result of the coup was to install a king, the Shah, who ruled with tyranny as an American puppet over the nation.  The Sharia-law loving Islamic fundamentalists, angered both by the coup and the secularism of the Shah, staged their own revolution in 1979.  The CIA created the word "blowback" specifically to mean the unintended consequences of this anti-democratic American imperialism.

Quite simply, Americans were fighting their first war--the Korean War--under the banner of the United Nations and leaving behind the notions of both non-interventionism and with Truman declaring the it a "police action" circumventing the constitutional requirement for a congressional declaration of war.  Because Truman had illegally intervened into Korea, the pressure was augmented for the US to support its longtime ally.  Additionally, the Korean War removed the moral high ground of non-interventionism and may have help signal to Churchill that such actions by the US were now acceptable leaving the door open for Churchill to petition the US into a second instance of interventionism when clearly this was a dispute between--at that time two friends of the US:  Iran and the UK.  Ron Paul obviously knows his history and were we all to study Iran would learn of a classic case of interventionism gone awry and a warning echoed by Paul for us not to intervene.

Additional reading:  TotallyFreePress, Iran’s History, the CIA / MI6 & Operation Ajax

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Five Tiers of 2012 Presidential Picks

As we get close to next week's August 11 Washington Examiner/Fox News Iowa debates, now the 3rd round of GOP Presidential debates, and having observed the behavior of the various candidates over the jejune debt ceiling compromise fiasco, I am better formulating whom I would vote for in an abundant choice of Presidential candidates.  I remain uncommitted as to whom I would vote for, but instead grouped the candidates into tiers by preference as of this moment as follows:

(Tier 1) Ron Paul, Gary Johnson
(Tier 2) Michele Bachmann, Sarah Palin, Chris Christie, Donald Trump
(Tier 3) Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, Herman Cain
(Tier 4) Newt Gingrich, Tim Pawlenty
(Tier 5) Thaddeus McCotter, Mitt Romney, Jon Huntsman, John Bolton

Tier 1 candidates are stone-sober debt cutters.  I don't worry about them being neo-cons who are willing to cut everything but the military industrial complex.  They have great track records of providing leadership in dealing with our economy.  They read the Constitution and abide by it.  They represent my preferred candidates.

Tier 2 candidates have much truth in their positions.  They tend to be aggressive fighters who will get things done in getting our economy back on course.  This group has extraordinary charisma and enthusiasm that will lend them towards success.

Tier 3 are candidates who have the potential to do a fine job.  I'm sure they would do much good and they strike me as having a high degree of personal integrity which we could sure use in a POTUS.

Tier 4 and Tier 5 candidates would really need to couple a person like a Tier 1 or Tier 2 in a presidential ticket to really get me enthused about their POTUS prospects.  To be clear, I'd strongly take any of the five tiers over a Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton; I am after all talking about a presidential GOP primary. 

What are your thoughts?

Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Upcoming New Face of the Provo City Council

Top Row L to R:  Kay Van Buren (Dist 4), Yancee Hardy (Citywide), Jim Pettersson (Dist 4)
Middle:  Gary Winterton (Dist 1), Howard Stone (Dist 4)
Bottom:  Bonnie Morrow (Dist 1), Gary Garrett (Citywide), Lindsay Wiblin (Dist 4)
Note:  Six Candidates for District 3 not pictured; Collage arranged in artistic manner not to favor any candidate
Friday marked the end day of filing season for four Provo City Council seat vacancies from a total of seven council seats including Districts 1, 3, 4, and a citywide seat.  We had a remarkable number of filings despite the recent stiffening of filing requirements by the current council.  Perhaps the remarkable number was due to all four council incumbents up for reelection chose not to run again.  Whatever the case may be, because the outcome of the Nov 8th elections will determine a majority of council seats, there is perhaps not better time than to get involved with city elections.  (See official Candidate List)
  • District 1 voters will choose between Bonnie Morrow and Gary Winterton on November 8.
  • District 3 voters will have a primary on Sept 13 to chose from the list of six candidates:
Tom Jarman
James E. Kallbacka
Jeff Marvell
Hal Miller
Glen K. Thurston
Richard E. Wood
  • District 4 voters will have a primary on Sept 13 to chose from the list of four candidates:
Jim Pettersson
Howard Stone
Kay Van Buren
Lindsay Wiblin
  • All voters will vote on Nov 8 between the two citywide candidates, Yancee Hardy and Gary Garrett.  (Note:  Find which district you're in on the Provo District Map)
In looking at the group as a whole, it is going to be an exciting election.  Some of the candidates have run before, while others are first-time-ever candidates for office.  I really appreciate the willingness of all the candidates to step forward and to provide us with differing options for change as we try and promote liberty among our citizenry.  I also salute the lame duck members of the council for their service with one final plea:  do not raise our property taxes up to 16% as you are now considering (Daily Herald, Jun 16) in contradiction to Mayor Curtis' proposed budget.
 
Many Provoans are finding themselves frustrated with their city government on a plethora of issues ranging from attempts to impose a daytime curfew, incessant tax hikes and fee increases, backyard pavement regulations, and building unnecessary roads and bridges on the west side. Yesterday, I sent out the following questionnaire to my District 4 candidates to find out where they stood on these many issues.  I expect to have a similar one developed shortly for city-wide candidates.  The questions cover a number of different hot-button topics.  There is also a movement within our district to get a forum scheduled for the candidates before the primary to increase voter awareness of the candidates.  Here is the questionnaire:
 
Did you support Prop 1 (Rec. Center bond)?

Do you support Opt-In or Opt-Out for curbside recycling?


Do you support the implementation of a RAP tax?


Should city property tax be eliminated, lowered, held, or raised?


Do you support the building of the Northwest Connector?


Do you support the council’s recent changes to campaign filing requirements?


Do you believe that a council member should resign if called to active military duty?


Do you support the current ticket policy whereby a fine doubles in 6 days and triples in 11?


What ideas will you bring to balancing the budget?


What has been your political party affiliation(s) for the past 10 years?


What future projects should the city fund?


Do you support tax increases and bond issuances being subject to a 2/3rds supermajority of voters?


What are your ideas for increasing revenue through growing the sales tax base?


What percentage of a backyard should a landowner be allowed to pave?


Do you support a daytime curfew for minors?


Do you support the redistricting of the city as to eliminate city-wide council positions?

Do you support the creation of a third interstate interchange for Provo?


Sunday, July 10, 2011

Great Men Pray: Is The LDS Church Advocating POTUS Candidates?

Imagine as a Mormon going to church this week and finding the image on the right, poster-sized on the framed, ward display case bulletin board.  George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and Barack Obama--all US Presidents--are seen with their heads bowed, eyes closed, hovering angel-esque above a LDS ward congregation also intent on prayer.  To the immediate right of the presidential portraits proclaims the caption:  "Great Men Pray."  In the youth classes, each youth is given a wallet-sized "Pass-along Card" with the same depiction as well.

Would such a poster cause you pause to think about the neutrality of the political position of the church?  Would you wonder why a poster of a sitting President who was actively campaigning for re-election decorated the same hallways as Jesus kneeling in Gethsemane or healing a leaper?  Would you ponder the singularity of such an event when no such other depictions of US Presidents adorned the hallowed passageways?

Although the LDS church created no such poster and the image is a photoshop of my own hand, it is however based on a similar 1956 poster depicted then with President Eisenhower instead of President Obama.  As in the case today with Obama, Eisenhower was running for re-election in 1956.

Elder Ezra T. Benson of the Quorum of the Twelve who was concurrently serving as Secretary of the Agriculture under President Eisenhower had this to say about the actual "Great Men Pray" poster (below) in the Sunday Morning (largest audience) Session of the October 1956 General Conference:


I was pleased, my brethren and sisters, as I read the report of the April conference and the remarks by Elder Mark E. Petersen, speaking as directed by the First Presidency, in announcing the series of new Church posters and cards for the benefit particularly of our young people, to note that one of them was going to be devoted to prayer. I wish there were time this morning to read the account of this particular card and poster on prayer. One will show the picture of George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and President Eisenhower in the background, and then in the foreground a family group. At the top we will read: "Great Men Pray," and again at the bottom: "Be Honest with Yourself." (scriptures.byu.edu)
Mormon-themed Blogger Keepapitchinin puts into perspective the distribution and church emphasis on distribution of the original posters and wallet sized cards from the series of BHWY advertising directed at the youth: "Be Honest With Yourself: The Background."  In fairness, at least the wallet cards attempted on the reverse side to explain the Presidential depiction of then current President Eisenhower by alluding to his time as a General in WWII:
Washington at Valley Forge — Lincoln before Gettysburg — Eisenhower on D Day — Joseph Smith in the Sacred Grove — Jesus at Gethsemane and at Golgotha — all these have prayed (full text available h/t tinypineapple.com)
By announcing the poster before the body of the church just a month before elections, could the poster have served as an over-zealous attempt by the church to influence its membership while staying technically neutral?  Furthermore, the governorship for the state of Utah was in chaos in a tight three-way race with incumbent Gov. Lee running as a Republican-turned-independent against strong Democrat and Republican contenders.  Both Lee and Republican Clyde both sought Eisenhower's endorsement, with Clyde (who would win) receiving a more current endorsement than Lee.  The issue of Eisenhower appearing in the LDS "Great Men Pray" distributions was addressed in Chapter 17 of Gov. Lee's biography "Let Em Holler" (Digital version avail at Utah State History) where the author was apparently unawares of the October announcement, instead crediting a post-election December date.  This raises the further question of did the "Great Men Pray" poster influence the outcome of a Utah gubernatorial election?

Bringing us to 2011, the issue of the involvement of the LDS into the political arena remains a poignant one for dedicated members such as myself.  We are currently dealing with a church who wants to influence immigration bills and to even formally lobby and praise the state legislature when it passes bills it likes.

Now the question before us is how much will the church want to promote or influence its two Mormon Presidential candidates:  Romney and Huntsman.  Although I don't worry about the church overtly supporting either candidate, as it has recently and repeatedly reiterated its neutrality stance (The Blaze, June 29, 2011), I do worry about the more subtle--yet potentially equally as powerful "Great Men Pray" types of support or advocacy the church may want to exert both pre- and post-election.

Mormons as a group are in the tank for Romney and to a lesser extent Huntsman.  Just today the Daily Herald revealed that Romney had secured support from 57 out of 80 Utah legislators, including 13 from Utah County.  Mormons will support the Mormon POTUS candidates just like blacks supported Obama in 2010, if for no other reason than their perceived political advancement of their minority.  For me I have a hard time supporting Romney who backed now ex-Sen. Bob Bennett in our grassroots push to replace him; and Huntsman is hard to swallow because he lied to his Democrat contender three years ago about his commitment to serve as Governor for his full 4-year term (Nacilbupera, May 2009).  While I'd take either Mormon over Obama in a wink and am glad they are both in the race, I am more appreciative of the multiple better-principled contenders for the Republican nomination I have to choose from.

P.S.:  For the die-hard Obama haters that can't imagine President Obama being a man of prayer, I derived the photoshop of Obama praying from this actual photo (White House Blog, Feb 2011) of Obama at the National Prayer Breakfast.  I don't hate Obama; I just hate his policies, lies, and lack of leadership.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Provo City Council Raises Garbage Fees 57%, Forces Opt-Out Tax

Congratulations, Provo, your taxes went up again.  And it's worse than you think.

Last month the city council voted 4-2 (5/3 Minutes, Item #7) to raise the fees on garbage collection from $11.00 a month to $14.50 for a single black can.  Councils Turley and Healey were the two who voted against the proposal.

Wayne Parker, Provo's CAO, claimed that the fee needed to be raised to $12.50 to cover costs.  But the liberals and environmentalists on the council then took the opportunity to pursue their own progressive agenda and voted to further hike the cost of black can collection by $2 more to penalize those residents who would not sign up for curbside recycling.  In other words, more than half the increase in cost of black can recycling will go to subsidize the curbside recycling.  Congratulations, Provo, you are now subsiding curbside recycling with tax dollars!

But it gets worse.  After raising the fee by 33% the council also decided to force its citizenry into "purchasing" a product:  no longer will trash collection be opt-in, it's now going to be opt out.  That means you have to submit the form available online at BY AUGUST 7, 2011 or call 801-852-6000 to not have to pay for the curbside can.  Otherwise you're stuck paying for an ugly blue recycling can in addition to your black one.  As Chair Healey pointed out, if you don't opt out, you will end up paying $17.50 for the two cans--an increase of 57% over the $11.00 you were paying!  Sounds to me like a redo of the Obamacare health insurance mandate.

While many longer term residents who are aware of the change and will read through the form mailed to them in with their monthly bill, many students preoccupied with studies will not.  When those not fortunate enough to catch the opt-out tax will be stuck (literally) in the cold with a huge surprise November bill.

The perpetrators of this curbside tax know that they can get unwatchful Provoans to pay the tax.  Currently only 24% of residents have the blue recycling can in addition to their black one.  With the opt-out the city expects to draft 65% of residents into recycling.  They further plan to use the revenues from recycling to propagandize the program (excuse me, "market" they termed it) the program instead of using the funds to subsidize the cost of the curbside recycling.  Just what we need: a government-subsidized "Re-use It Man".

In all, the liberal, environmentalist ambitions of the council were summed by the big-government phrase coined by Council Sterling Beck: "We need to incentivize people to recycle."

Rephrasing Beck's ideology: "Government needs tax its citizens and then use those funds to incentivize people to behave in a manner the government wants them to."  This ideology is nothing but pure socialism and breaks the trust put forth in the Declaration of Independence which gives citizens the right to pursue "life, liberty, and happiness [determination of one's own property]."

Mayor Curtis who as a candidate talked favorably about privatizing garbage pickup, has flip-flopped and now seems more interested in spreading falsehoods and spin about the program on his blog.

Consider the following by Curtis:
  • "No one is required to participate." (False.  I am required to take action or else on August 7th I am forced into participation.) 
  • "No sorting is required"  (False.  You need to review the Recycling Do's and Don'ts on our city's website.)
  • "You'll find you have much more room in your trash can for trash since so much goes into the recycling can." (Pure opinion.  When I had the blue can, it was nearly empty each week.  It probably cost more in labor for the refuse worker to empty the can than in the materials I recycled each week.)
Any entrepreneur who wants to pick up my trash for less than $14.50 a month, please contact me at:  nacilbupera@gmail.com to get my business.  If I can't get a taker, maybe I'll just completely opt-out and take the trash myself to the dump:  at SUVSWD it's $4 per covered truckload.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Skokos for Governor of Utah?

Having been highly disappointed with several of the signatures of Gov. Herbert (HB477, HB166, etc), I am looking for a replacement Gov in 2012.  One of the emerging potential candidates is William Skokos, CEO of American Resource Petroleum.  I am currently reading his book "Return to Common Sense" which I downloaded from Tate Publishing (PDF format works great on my Droid and even moreso with the 99-cent app "ezPDF Reader"; the book is also available on Amazon.)

I met Mr. Skokos at a Buy Back America gathering of an amazing lot of patriots a few weeks ago and was enthralled by his remarks.  More recently, Mr. Skokos has been a guest on the Rod Arquette Show.
Today on facebook a video was released about his views on domestic energy entitled "Utah Economics 101."  Enjoy:

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Gov. Johnson's Plan to Balance the Budget Tomorrow

To his credit, one of the few fair Fox News interviews with GOP Presidential Candidate Gov. Gary Johnson on was broadcast last night on the Sean Hannity Show:


Gov. Johnson hit a nerve with me by focusing on the most important issue facing our nation:  the boldest plan I have heard from any Presidential candidate to balance the budget:
I'm under the belief that we're on the verge of a financial collapse...that's in lieu of the fact that we have $14 Trillion dollars in debt and we have no ability to repay $14 Trillion dollars in debt if we're racking up $1.6 Trillion dollars in deficit spending this year, the year prior, two years prior, and the years looking ahead.  Look, we're not going to pay back $14 Trillion dollars in debt.  So what we have to do is embark on balancing the federal budget tomorrow.
Gov. Johnson next puts forth his common-sense plan on how to balance the budget including entitlement reductions.  The plan was credible given Gov. Johnson's recap earlier in the interview of his competent financial stewardship in balancing the budget in the 2-1 registered Democrat state of New Mexico.

The latter part of the interview focuses on the drug issue Hannity and some other Republicans might take issue with.  Legalizing drugs is such a small ripple compared of the tsunami of debt threatening to destroy the entire nation, I don't worry about Gov. Johnson's views.  Besides, if some Mormon members close to me can overlook Obama's views on abortion despite their belief system that abortion is wrong--because they mistakenly believed that then Sen. Obama (with no fiscal track record) would keep our nation's fiscal house in order--then I certainly could support someone with a controversial issue that has little to do with balancing the budget.  Simply put, there is no candidate I completely agree with on every issue.

And yet as an ardent defender of the 10th Amendment, I find it impossible to justify the federal government's unwarranted regulation of drugs at a national level and feel legalization is an issue left to the states.

My prima donna issue for 2012 is to find the candidate most likely not only to balancing the budget, but in paying down the debt and if you agree, then I would assert you need to consider adding, as I have, Gov. Johnson to your list of preferred Presidential candidates.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Dick Morris' Propaganda Poll Hides Ron Paul Vote

Tonight on the Fox News' O'Reilly Factor Show, Commentator Dick Morris offered up a "Dick Morris/GMRS" poll which Mr. Morris touted as showing presidential candidate Mitt Romney up in the lead over other candidates as follows (Palin was excluded from the survey which was done after the exit of Huckabee and Trump):

Romney = 30%
Gingrich = 15%
Bachmann = 7%
Cain = 7%
Pawlenty = 5%
Santorum = 3%
Huntsman = 1%

I find a couple of problems with this poll which was uncontested by host Bill O'Reilly:

(1) The numbers don't add up; in fact they add up to just 68%.  That means almost a third of the votes were "thrown out".  There simply aren't enough missing candidates (people like Ron Paul, Chris Christie, Bobby Jindal, Gary Johnson) that would fit underneath Huntsman's 1% which means that at least one of the missing candidates got higher, and in all probability in the double digits.  I wonder who this missing candidate could be?  Perhaps this video on the "last of seven candidates for president" by Morris just might shed some light:


Morris, a former Clinton advisor and now Republican cheerleader, defames fellow Republican Ron Paul as someone who "would be a total disaster as president" citing two policy disagreements with Paul: drug war and foreign intervention.  How Ron Paul who appears to be the most fiscally conservative and anti-debt candidate of anyone running is in Mr. Morris' mind a "total disaster as president" serves no purpose but to slam Conservatives who are stone-cold-sober about reducing our debt and saving our country.

How interesting it is on Bill O'Reilly Factor Fox News website this very candidate--Dr. Ron Paul--missing from Mr. Morris poll is the leading candidate by far on the current O'Reilly Factor "No Spin Poll":

(2) The Morris poll is closed to outside review.  The complete findings of the poll are not available for review including such important things as if the candidate order presented was randomized, the rankings of ALL candidates, and the number of votes received.  Nor can you make comments on Morris site unless you pay him money.  Furthermore, information about what "GMRS" is is totally blocked from view.  A Google search of "GMRS survey" returns nothing of use.  In all, this poll serves nothing but to further the Morris propaganda that he hates Ron Paul and will distort the truth to further Morris' dogma.

I believe if you are going to have a "No Spin Zone" then abide by a policy of no spin and call out Mr. Morris for putting a huge amount of anti-Ron Paul spin on the show.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Engaged In Any Sexual Solicitation Lately?

READER DISCRETION:  THIS POST NOT FOR KIDS!!!

If you live in Utah, you've probably already committed multiple acts that could be considered sexual solicitation under Utah's newly passed, two-page, broadly-worded HB121 which sailed through the legislature and governor's desk without opposition from either party.  As background, consider the May 20th Tribune article "Escorts: Utah law makes acting sexy illegal".  The article, while commendable, stops short of analyzing the full repercussions of the new law.

The broadness of HB121 originates from lines 46-8 which reads:
(2) An intent to engage in sexual activity for a fee may be inferred from a person's engaging in, offering or agreeing to engage in, or requesting or directing another to engage in  any of the acts described in Subsection (1)(c) under the totality of the existing circumstances.
That is to say if one as much as "engages in" any of the activities in Subsection (1)(c), they may have their behavior inferred to mean "an intent to engage in sexual activity for a fee" subject only to a vague, undefined, open-to-interpretation-by-a-judge phrase "under the totality of existing circumstances."

The activity in Subsection (1)(c) is defined as:
(i) exposure of a person's genitals, the buttocks, the anus, the pubic area, or the female breast below the top of the areola;
(ii) masturbation;
(iii) touching of a person's genitals, the buttocks, the anus, the pubic area, or the female breast; or (iv) any act of lewdness.
Thus in theory, if you have touched or exposed your genitals, buttocks, anus, pubic area, or female areolas, (and thus "engaged in" sexual activity by definition of lines 46-8) your actions may be inferred to constitute an "intent to engage in sexual activity for a fee" and thus sexual solicitation subject to interpretation by a judge.

The absurd broadness of this law could lead the following actions to be considered sexual solicitation (even if done in private):
  • Going to the bathroom (exposing and/or touching one's genitals)
  • Bathing, taking a shower or undressing (lewdness, exposure)
  • A physician who requests you to remove clothing (exposure, lewdness)
  • A TSA agent looking at your nudy backscatter image or giving you an aggressive patdown
  • Breastfeeding (exposure of the female areola)
  • Consensual intercourse (exposure of genitalia)
  • Applying sunscreen on your buttocks or other areas (touching prohibited here)
  • Scratching of the groin or other areas due to jock itch, etc (again, no touching)
  • Dozens of other possibilities
I predict this one won't make it through the courts, but until lawmakers come to their senses or judges rule, keep your clothes on and don't touch.  And just maybe blogger Connor Boyack isn't so off target in his Invitation to Repeal bad and excessive legislation.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Honor Armed Forces Day Today by Bringing Home the Troops

Although not even published as a holiday on my credit union's wall calendar, today marks the 63rd celebration of our nation's Armed Forces Day.  We have the best, most noble Armed Forces in the world:  a military of paid volunteers defending our Constitution and protecting our country and performing one of the few Constitutionally-mandated responsibilities of the Federal Government.  Their service and sacrifice make me proud to be an American!

Yet on this rightfully celebratory day, I reflect upon the many lives which are lost in far away lands on expensive missions authorized by presidential edicts.  It seems our American President (including but by no means limited to President Obama) lacks the courage to bring the troops home when our mission is accomplished. 

According to the latest available Department of Defense statistics (Dec 31, 2010) we have tens of thousands of troops in other lands fighting or preparing to fight other nations' conflicts, and I'm not just talking about Iraq and Afghanistan. 

Consider the Korean War which ended some 58 years ago:  over these many years we have provided our close ally, the Republic of Korea, with an average of 40,000 troops (Heritage Foundation) arising from a mutual 1953 defense treaty.  Isn't it about time to bring these troops home?  Yet in 2008, then ROK Defense Minister Lee outlined the Korean expectation for "the U.S. [to] continue to provide bridging capabilities until Korea acquires sufficient defense capabilities." (America.gov)  All this despite Korea's  own military force of 680,000 to defend its borders! (US Dept of State, 2010)

Maybe the Koreans are right:  58 years is just way too soon for these feeble, namby-pamby Korean troop allies to defend their own homeland.  For example, in Europe we boast 55,000 troops in Germany and 10,000 troops each in Italy and the UK left over 66 years ago from WWII!  And the debilitated Japanese force home to the once mighty Samurai gets only 35,000 American troops.  So just when will these countries be mighty enough to bring troops home?  Well if enough politicians feel the way McCain does, it could be 100 years! (Youtube)

And then there's the pointed question of just how in the world does a fiscal conservative justify the expenditure of troops in foreign countries for decades with no exit strategy when our own economy is ready to tumble under $14T of debt?


We do have an war going on our southern border:  human and narcotic trafficking are out of control.  If any asset or ally should be defended right now, it is our own neglected border.  Let's honor our armed forces today by having them fight for American soil and American blood.  After being attacked on 9/11, we were right to fight Al-Qaeda the Taliban, but it is now past time for the troops to come home from Afghanistan...and many other places from around the world.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Invasion of the Body Scanners

It appears for now Dr. Bennell has stopped the Pod People from reproducing nudy body scanners at our airports.  In an Andrew Taylor AP article (Daily Herald), the House Appropriations Homeland Security Subcomittee denied this week the Obama administration request of $76M for 275 additional nudy scanners to the existing 500.  (See also "Appropriations Committee Releases Fiscal Year 2012 Homeland Security Appropriations Bill") 

While this is a victory, the fight must be waged until all the Rapiscan scanners are removed from our airports and we stop giving innocent men, women, and children a choice between public nudity coupled with radiation exposure and public molestation.  With this choice facing flyers, there leaves little doubt that KSM and Mohamed Atta come out victors and have through their actions put the American people into bondage to their own progressive government.

These nudy scanners at our airports represent three gross negatives: 
  • A pork barrel waste of precious tax dollars.  The AP article above cites Homeland Security spokesman Adam Fletcher as boasting "nearly 210 prohibited, illegal or dangerous items" discovered since the body scanner invasion last year.  This statistic is simply saying that with an $8B annual budget, it is costing the American taxpayer an amazing $37 Million dollars per contraband item discovered by the scanners.  And not a single one of these 210 items was an explosive device nor a thwarted terrorist attack, but in all probability small things like a penknife left in someone's pocket.  We don't have that kind of money to waste.
  • An intrusive and immoral scan of our private bodies.  I am among those who has chosen to avoid flying whenever reasonably possible due primarily to the belief that it violates tenants of my religion to keep my body covered.  I am further bewildered by a church who readily lobbies in the area of illegal immigrant, but won't speak up to protect the denuding and molestation of its members, let alone its missionaries who must fly in order to complete their voluntary service.
  • A clear violation of the of the 4th Amendment by a government agency (TSA):
"The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized. (Full text of 4th Amendment, US Constitution)
Just remember the warning:  the scanners are here already! You're next! You're next!

Utah's Little Tent Party

I don't profess to be an expert on fellow Utah Republican Mike Ridgway's history with the Party, but I have met him briefly and highly esteem his work.  That's not to say I agree with Mike's every position; yet part of his important mission is to try and keep our Party free from corruption, something important to me as a Republican--for when corruption is eventually exposed (as all evil eventually is) it results in a diminishing of our Party.  Mike has been through so many trials it amazes me his dedication to Party and principle.  Just one of many examples:  while running for the 1st Congressional seat in Utah, Ridgway amazingly was denied the opportunity to speak at the Salt Lake County GOP Convention despite other candidates having the opportunity (Youtube)

Blogger Right View Mirror revealed today that at Saturday's State Central Committee meeting in a closed door meeting (meaning no votes recorded by person) voted to ban Mike from virtually all GOP activity:
The SCC also voted to retreat into an executive session in order to consider a resolution (submitted by Thomas Clay) which would banish Republican Mike Ridgway from “attending, participating in, or running for URP office in any meeting of the URP, including URP Conventions, URP State Central Committee meetings, URP Executive Committee meetings, URP gatherings or events sponsored or hosted by the same.”  The resolution was originally submitted in January and debated for a while before being sent back to committee; it reappeared at Saturday’s meeting, where it passed.
What a small tent day it was indeed for a party so threatened by a fellow party activist that they had to in secret ban one of their own.  We've had elected Republicans in Utah skinny dip with minors in a hot tub and get thrown in jail for DUI's but they've never received equal punishment.  We've had RINOs who pay little attention to the platform they are to uphold not receive such banishment.  Why pick on a self-funded, lowly activist and patriot named Mike?  This resolution just makes me groan in disgust.

These secret actions Saturday by Utah's GOP leadership have the reverse effect of what they intend: in their excessive castigation they prove Mike's hypothesis that the party is indeed corrupt: for the state GOP central committee cannot tolerate the voice of a sole whistleblower anywhere remotely associated with them.  I do pray for a bigger tent Republican Party.

Monday, May 16, 2011

New EPA Regulations Proving More Costly

By Guest Journalist Ryan Halston

A new set of EPA regulations could prove again to be costly for American industry leaders. The March act slated to cut toxic air emission by 91 percent could end up causing a major burden for the economy.

The EPA toxic air rule has had shown an estimated $11 billion cost to industry, as well as hurt around 3 percent of American coal generation. The power industry is starting to feel a bit of unease with regards to the regulations, as testing is taking place on the amount of hit that business leaders could take.

The timeline of the recent regulations has also been called into question. The chairman of American Electric Power has openly criticized the timeline of the regulation as a “train wreck” primarily because the swiftness would hurt the economy. An estimated difference of $5 billion in economic hit could ensue as a result of a swift timeline, as opposed to something that’s more drawn out. Without a change in the actual law, there would be no legal way to affect the timeline as well. Power industry leaders are in favor of a 2020 deadline, while the regulations currently call for an end time of 2015.

The toxic air regulations are just another in what seems to be a long line of initiatives from the EPA in 2010 and 2011 that are rubbing many the wrong way. A common complaint involving the EPA’s work in the past year has been the view that the agency is becoming a power hungry organization. With the levy of constant costly regulations and lack of responses from the EPA, this connotation could be proving true.

The EPA has somewhat gone off track from some of its major goals in recent years. The constant barrage from the GOP has possibly forced the agency into constantly defending greenhouse gas emission regulations, possibly taking some their own focus away from other areas. When you look at it, the EPA just seems to be a bit off course. They have taken some of their resources away from programs like the fight on water contamination and work against asbestos exposure in exchange for more time devoted defending and levying regulations that work to cost companies major money.

Perhaps the most unfortunate thing about this battle is that the EPA may end up causing major hits to itself in the end. If the agency continues to defend costly regulations that have little to no effect on health, business leaders and GOP officials will most likely continue doing what is necessary to right the ship. This could include further EPA budget cuts and more legislation firing back at the environmental agency.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Republican Political Courage in Partial Obamacare Repeal

According to a Pete Kasperowicz The Hill article on Wednesday, the House voted 235-191 (roll call vote) to pass HR1214 (full text), a small Obamacare repeal of $100M in grant money for construction of School-Based Health Centers (SBHC).  While the dominant mood of the Republicans voting for HR 1214 was to turn around the out-of-control spending binge by the Democrats, liberal-leaning The Hill failed to present the controversial nature of SBHCs as ensurers of teenage access to contraceptives and abortion services providers (read more about SBHC's at Human Life International).  HR1214 is a simple, three-paragraph, easy to understand repeal of irresponsible SBHC spending backed by all but four Republicans and supported by three Democrats.

A Disappointing Vote:  Rep. West
Today, in a Russell Berman The Hill article, Mr. Berman pointed out the irony in the Allen West (R-FL22) vote.  Rep. West, a tea party favorite, had voted along with all the other Republicans in favor of a different partial Obamacare bill the day prior (HR1213) but cited the importance of focus on international issues including Libya as a reason for his "no" vote.  The Hill went further and pointed out that two SBHC applicants were within Rep. West's district, implying and perhaps rightly so, West's vote was influenced by the two applicants.  While I respect Rep. West's natural leadership and his voting record to date, this particular one I cannot accept.

True Political Courage:  Rep. Dold
While The Hill wasted no time in bagging a tea party member, they failed to present a true hero in the HR1214 vote:  Rep. Robert Dold (R-IL10).  Rep. Dold, a fiscal-conservative social-moderate freshman congressman who replaced Mark Kirk (Sen. Kirk won the Senate seat previously held by Obama), sits in "the most Democratic district of any Republican in the country" (National Journal) with redistricting controlled by Democrats.  Add to that, according to a Democrat-complied list of all applicants for the SBHC grant a whopping 13 applicants were within Dold's district--nearly double the number of applicants in any other congressional district!  To vote to deny the pork within one's own district takes a huge amount a political courage and Dold earned my admiration.  Too bad Mr. Berman at The Hill could only make a case against an aberrant Republican Congressman and not balance it with the Congressman who demonstrated true political courage.

Utah's Take
Utah's three Congressmen all voted party-line.  By his vote, liberal Matheson demonstrated his continued support for outrageous spending and Planned Parenthood referrals.  It was, however, nice to see on the SBHC grant list that Utah was devoid of applicants for the pork-barrel federal spending.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Obama's Ultimate Insult to Government Transparency (Update)

In the past legislative session in Utah, HB477 aka "GRAMA bill" sparked a bipartisan outrage at the proposed modifications to government transparency which led to its repeal.  From day one of passage, I spoke out against HB477 and more recently set personal example by running an extremely transparent GOP leadership campaign (which I did not win.)

Yet President Obama's lack of transparency concerning the death of Osama bin Laden pales in comparison to the issues presented above.  First, despite $625K in annual speechwriting fees and up to $100K in teleprompter assistance (Washington Times, h/t American Thinker) Obama provided scarce details in announcing the death of Osama.  No mention of the four helicopters including a downed one, the number of people killed or captured, the ritual cleansing of the body, the Islamic funeral mocking the death of those who died in 9/11, nor the burial at sea.  These things had to be sorted out by the media over the course of the past few days and was entirely inappropriate for the Commander in Chief not to mention.

Now we are told that we are not going to have any opportunity to review video or pictures of the event.  Indeed we haven't heard from a single eyewitness of the event, nor have we been privy to the DNA test results or the facial recognition results.  In other words, Obama has simply said "trust me."  For a government accountable to "We the People" this is unacceptable. 

We paid for these operations from our tax money and we have a right to witness ALL the evidence of Osama's death.  It's not that we necessarily disbelieve what we are told, we just want to exercise our constitutionally-guaranteed right to information.  Indeed Monday the AP filed a FOIA request to get access to the information owed the American People (CBS).

The reason given by the Obama administration for not releasing the information was that it "could" incite Muslim fanatics to violence.  In this arrogant decision the President is neglecting his duty to We the People and the Constitution.  We owe no allegiance to Muslim terrorists, but the President is to work for us, the American people. 

This insult is just the latest in a series of events marking Obama as perhaps the most un-transparent President ever to take office.  One of the things I will be looking for in a new President in 2012 is someone who will commit release all the Osama death images, video, and evidence to the People.

++++ Update 9:30pm

After watching the first presidential debates tonight on Fox News, four (Paul, Pawlenty, Johnson, Santorum) of the five raised their hand in support of releasing the OBL pictures.  Having been impressed with Cain, I was highly disappointed he alone did not support releasing the pictures. (National Journal)

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Eagle Mountain: #1 In Forced Recycling

On the front page of its "Our Towns" section in today's Daily Herald (DH) Utah County's Eagle Mountain is heralded as "#1 In Recycling."  The article heaps praise on the issue of opt-out curbside recycling as it lauds the 84% participation rate as "the most successful voluntary recycling program in the county."  The DH hardly presents a balanced side of the issue.

While personally I am a conservationist and believe it recycling materials, I reject government mandates to force me to do so.  Having a program where you must do an action (opt out) to prevent from incurring a tax in the form of a $48 annual fee for curbside recycling (Eagle Mtn city website) seems mean-spirited at best.  How the Founding Fathers would have envisioned its constituency to be burdened with an opt-out to avoid taxation seems to me to be one of a severe infringement of liberty.  Furthermore, nowhere in the DH article does it mention the burden of this onerous $48 fee--let alone calling it by its true name:  taxation.

But Eagle Mountain's opt out is even worse:  you can only opt out once per year and the DH article comes just a week after the close of this year's opt-out option.  While promoting so-called "voluntary" recycling (try telling any EM resident who wants out now that they are part of a "voluntary" program!), the DH did not do equal justice in putting a front-section-page reminder to residents that their small window of opportunity would soon be upon them.

Defenders of liberty would do well to change all forms of government opt-out taxation to opt-in.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

The Treasured Story of My Candidacy

Thursday a friend inquired of me about my running for a GOP leadership position for our convention at month's end here in Utah County.  The thought rather caught me off guard.  I think if you had asked me my personal political priorities prior to the inquiry I might have responded to try and keep up with my blog, finish reading Altas Shrugged before the movie release, help get HB116 repealed, and get to know better the candidates to be running for GOP leadership.

But my friend's inquiry changed that paradigm:  for I consider myself a passionate patriot committed to principle and one of my principles says you can't sit around on your behind and hope that others will carry the torch of liberty when you can.  Being on my first go-around as a county delegate, I felt I was pretty much doing my duty (and enjoying it!) and had no desire to carry another torch.  Yet when I began to seriously examine the race, I began to feel compelled to do so.

You see, I think I overdid it a bit for a typical county delegate.  In my pursuit of knowledge for party workings, I attended a few Central Committee meetings--not required of a "ordinary" delegate that I am--as an observer and watched, listened, and took notes about how people acted, how people treated others, and who stood for principle and who stood for power.  I began to become concerned about the operations of the party.  It seemed like their were people in power who were trying to use their power to manipulating things as to extinguish the flame of liberty. 

Knowing that the organizing convention was quickly approaching in April, I attended the March CC meeting and saw still the politics of power in my party trump the politics of principle.  To make matters worse, there was this "9 for 5" bundling together of candidates campaigning for the convention around a platform so broad as to make the platform meaningless (IE:  "elect good Republicans").  Rather than focus on the strengths of their individual candidates with strong, unique personalities and passions they collectivized their platform-within-a-platform.  The more I reflected on this the more it turned me off and I felt like I would be unable to vote for someone that stood on a fluff platform of honestly, nonsensical incontrovertible (like a delegate would want to elect a bad Republican?)

In examining the candidates for Treasurer on the day before filing deadline, I saw a sole candidate and that this candidate had signed on to the "9 for 5" agenda.  This was unacceptable to me and precluded me from voting for this person.  In deeper introspection of my own life I realized it has been a life full of managing people and money both professionally and in voluntary organizations.  There was no doubt that I had more than adequate skills with which to properly serve my party as Treasurer.  What an awesome combination:  someone who is principled yet who has a professional track record of managing power and money?  Being blessed with a wife who is fully supportive of my political endeavors there remained but one thing to do as with all important decisions:  clear it with the Almighty Maker.  My friend's simple inquiry had morphed into an action that I knew I must do, a torch I must seek to bear.

This may all seem a bit strange to the reader:  I have generally tried to separate my political bloggings from what I considered more my quiet, behind-the-scenes observations and comments within the party.  And while I think it appropriate still to have some sort of separation, I deem I shall have to be much more vocal about my concerns and ideas for my party.  Thus the announcement of a separate blog regarding my campaign for Utah County Treasurer:  SteveReid4Treasurer.blogspot.com which I intend to be my primary source of communication to the 1300 delegates whose vote I'll be seeking over the next few weeks.
To this exciting adventure, I'll need help and lots of it.  Specifically, I'll need help from any Utah County Republican willing to assist me with the practical matters of campaigning.  Secondly, I'll need lots of input:  my listening, note taking, and observing haven't stopped; they're just coupled now with the responsibility to communicate.  Please contact me (nacilbupera@gmail.com) if you can lend a hand or a voice.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Gov Walker Withstands Violent Rehetoric, Fake Caller, Questionable Doctors Notes, and Fleebaggers During Wisconsin Budget Battle

Observations and analysis on the $3B Wisconsin state budget crisis:
  • The genesis of a new political term: "fleebagger" (Twitter hashtag #fleebagger sometimes #fleabagger; blogoshere example Michelle Malkin who also uses the term "Party of Truancy") to describe those who abdicate duty for protest and flee to a fleabag motel. Note that the right's use of this term provides a high road contrast to the sexually-explicit left's term of "teabagger." (see Urban Dictionary; reader discretion advisory)
  • Gov. Scott Walker is a strong leader. He's calm and doesn't deviate from the basic task of government of fiscal functionality. Reminds me of Chris Christie.
  • Where is Obama's condemnation of the union protester's uncivil comparisons (see example photos at Doug Ross At Journal) using crosshairs over Walker's face and Hitler comparisons, when just a few weeks ago at the AZ shootings memorial service he took a supposed strong stance for civility? Obama is weak and his lack of prior executive experience continues to glare--even now halfway through his presidency.
  • And where is the condemnation by Obama of his own party's Democratic member of the U.S. House, Michael Capuano (MA-08) urging union supporters to "get a little bloody" with their protests in the streets? (New American including video)
  • Wouldn't it be nice if the Democrats in the U.S. Senate were to go into hiding, too? In 2012 America has the opportunity to send 23 of these Democrats and Progressive Independents out of the public eye. (Nacilbupera, Nov 2012)
  • Many of the Wisconsin union protesters are paid while tea party protesters pay their own expenses. Tea party rallies are more often on weekends so that tea party patriots can work and contribute to society and family. Many a Wisconsin state employee including teachers used questionable doctors' notes issued at the union protest rally (MacIver Institute, Feb 19) and illegally abused sick pay to protest, putting children and classrooms behind protest and pay. (politics.gather.com)
  • Union dues help fund the election of Democrats and are unfair to those who contribute but do not support different candidates than those to whom the union decides to give their due money to.
  • These union dues are no small change as Commentator Charles Krauthammer points out: "[Unions] are worried to death if you give teachers and others a choice to pay $1,000 a year in union dues or not, some of them may actually say, 'I think I can use that thousand dollars.'" (O'Reilly Factor transcript, Feb 22).

Concerning leftist blogger Ian Murphy who posed as David Koch in a phone interview this week with Wisconsin Gov. Walker ("Koch Whore" to use Murphy's disparaging term), seeking to entrap the Governor (coverage including full audio at FireAndreaMitchell.com):

  • Murphy fails reader in the title his supposed expose "Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker answers his master’s call." That Koch is the supposed "master" makes no sense because Walker fails to recognize the so-called "master's" voice. David Koch's real voice can be heard here: (Youtube). Walker also fails to question impostor-Koch's offer of "flying to Cali" when Koch is a longtime resident and philanthropist of NYC (Wikipedia).
  • Walker plays along friendly with the call, calming asserting his position while not falling for the foul language or attempts at dirty play. Walker responds exactly how he should have, exactly like how one would respond to any media with exception of detailing appropriate GOP strategy.
  • The Left thinks conspiratorially: many of their writings reflect their belief that the Koch brothers are the financial seed-planters of the tea party. As a self-described tea party member, I had never heard of the Koch brothers until now as the tea party is devoid of centralized leadership and formal membership.
  • The Left are preoccupied with right-wing conspiracy such because they have their own financial seed-planter George Soros and unprecedented access to President Obama by SEIU's Andy Stern, Goldman Sach's Lloyd Blankfein, and AFL-CIO's Richard Trumpka (see articles WashingtonExaminer.com and above-referenced O'Reilly Factor transcript).
  • Murphy could (and should) face criminal identity theft charges. The Freedom Fighter's Journal does a thumbs up job in examining Wisconsin state law and makes a strong case for such charges. I wonder whether Wisconsin law would apply, New York law, the state of origin of Murphy's call, or any of the above depending on who wanted to run with it.
  • In addition to or instead of criminal charges, Mr. Murphy could face a civil defamation of character or related lawsuit by David Koch.
  • Murphy has written offensively in the past including "F*ck the Troops" and "Let There Be Retards" (The Daily Caller)

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Mike Lee's Praiseworthy Plans to Filibuster Raising the Debt Ceiling

Nacilbupera regulars know I had a knotty dilemma choosing between GOP primary candidates for US Senator for Utah in 2010. Though in the end I voted for Lee I remained critical, less on issues and more so on conduct. My vexation held merit: I believe a healthy dose of critical examination and accountability of our officials by our citizenry is vital to maintaining our republic; of little import, even destructive consequence lies rote adulation (Mmm mmm, mmm) of our pols. In counter to our probing, commendation is essential when politicians do right. Bible study today highlighted this to me:
A false balance is abomination to the Lord: but a just weight is his delight. (Proverbs 11:1)
When I watched Lee on liberal MSNBC (below), I was very impressed with his performance regarding a filibustering of raising the debt ceiling to focus our attention on cutting spending. Lee has it 100% correct: pending something huge like a tough Balanced Budget Amendment, we should not be raising the ceiling. Unlike O'Donnell, I have enough faith in Lee that when he says he's going to attempt a filibuster of raising the debt ceiling, I believe him.


Related articles: The Hill, KSL, CNN
Related topic: Mike Lee's Balanced Budget Amendment contrasted to Hatch's (25 minute blogger interview audio h/t Liberty Pundits); Acutal text (S. J. RES. 5) of Mike Lee's BBA

Monday, February 14, 2011

Ron Paul: Twice Victor at CPAC Makes Him Credible

Rep. Ron Paul won the CPAC Presidential straw poll a second year in a row, outpacing over 14 other candidates with a whopping 30% of the first place votes (see CPAC 2011 Straw Poll official results). After having personally previously written off Rep. Paul as an insignificant aberration, I knew after winning CPAC twice consecutively I had to give him another chance and devoted myself to listening to his CPAC speech.

I was stunned. Literally, I cannot remember a more inspirational speech by a national-level politician since my youth listening to Ronald Reagan. Rep. Paul tackled the GOP sacred cow of defense spending, of ending the Federal Reserve, of protecting the Constitution by protecting our natural civil and fiscal liberties. After all my studying and devotion to politics, he at a national level unabashedly set forth exactly what needs to be done. And the fact that he was willing to tackle the difficult issues vaulted him in my mind as the biggest principled debt- and government-shrinking zealot out there: and that is precisely what we need right now as a country to save us from ourselves and our $14T debt tsunami.

So then I started to compare other CPAC presidential hopeful speeches. Second-place Romney came across as an Obama-attack dog. That's a good thing. Yet what Paul did was better: to provide specific principles and solutions to an ever power-massing federal government. Tonight I watched Hannity's show on Fox News and he played a CPAC excerpt of Donald Trump saying Paul couldn't win while completely neglecting any excerpt from Paul, the huge victor. (Presidential straw poll votes for Trump were lumped in the "other" category.) Hannity's actions tonight were blatantly anti-Paul.

As for myself, I have yet to commit to any candidate. I like Cain, Palin, Christie, Bachmann, and now Paul a whole lot and like a whole lot less Huntsman, Gingrich, and Trump. Kind of between the two groups of like and like a lot less lie Romney, Huckabee, Santorum, Barbour, Thune, and Jindal. Pawlenty and Daniels I don't know well enough to put into any category yet.

Here's some of the great guzzles I extracted from Paul's speech; full vid follows:

"We need to do a lot less a lot sooner not only in Egypt, but around the world."

"It used to be Conservatives were against foreign aid. I'm still against foreign aid for everybody."

"Foreign aid is taking money from the poor people of a rich country and giving it to the rich people of a poor country...and there can't be a be example of that than what we did with Egypt."

"People don't like us propping up their dictators no more than we would like it if a foreign country came in here an propped up a dictator in our country."

"We've had troops in Japan since WWII and Germany: why are we paying for their defense?"

"The bill to audit the Fed is the first step to ending the Federal Reserve."

"[The Fed] eliminated 98% of the value of 1913 the dollar."

"The purpose of all political activity is to promote Liberty."

"Liberty comes from our Creator. It doesn't come from our government."

"When government takes over the role of making us virtuous, in making us excellent, and redistributing the wealth, they only do it at the expense of liberty: and that's why we're in such terrible shape today."


Saturday, February 12, 2011

Provo's $100,000 "Switch It Man"

Provoans may not be able to afford a 6 Million Dollar Man, but we've now got our $100,000 "Switch It Man" to save the day from our wasteful energy selves. How fitting...we're wasting money on Switch It Man for the objective of wasting less energy.

Switch It ManTM (yeah, he's actually trademarked) has hit Provo hard in February. He's in banners across streets, in the newspaper, home mailers, on twitter, facebook, and even has his own blog. Rumor has it he'll even get to be the grand marshal of the Freedom Festival this year, (the feral cat came in second place). Switch It ManTM even has his own controversial commercial on youtube which--incredibly--urges wives to dump energy-lazy husbands in favor of owning a dog (watch ending):




Switch It Man: Rooted in the Federal Government

Switch It Man became a funded possibility two years ago as part of the "shovel-ready" projects of the failed Obama Stimulus plan or American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, passed in haste now two years ago to create jobs and stimulate the economy. A little over a year earlier in late 2007, Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) had been passed and included a Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program (EECBG) which became funded under this failed Obama Stimulus (U.S. Dept of Energy). Cities, including Provo, from across Utah and indeed the country applied for these "grants" (list of recipients) which amounts to nothing more than a redistribution of taxpayer dollars back to communities in the form of a bribe for certain behavior--in this case, spending monies on things deemed by the Federal Government to curb energy usage.

Provo City's Thirst for Federal Funds

In June 2009, Provo City completed its EECBG application and was consequently awarded a $1.14M grant from the Federal Government. Last year's January 5th Municipal Council Study Meeting (minutes) provide details in how our taxpayer $1.14M will be spent:
  • Energy Audits $235,000
  • Weatherization Program $225,000
  • Appliance Rebates $175,000
  • Energy Services Marketing $100,000
  • City Building Energy Audit and Upgrade $125,000
  • Street Light Efficiency $50,500
  • Traffic Signal Efficiency $84,000
  • Bike Lanes and Trails $150,000
The "Energy Services Marketing" line was the amount Provo City budgeted in order to create Switch It ManTM to inform the citizenry about all the "goodies" Provo City had secured from the U.S. Taxpayers. Perhaps the Feds required a certain percentage to be spent on marketing; otherwise it counts as a frivolous waste on top of million dollar federal pork project. You can't tell me that by using its powerful array of free or extremely low-cost advertising that the city couldn't get the word out about "free" government goodies. The city even got a December write-up article in the Salt Lake Tribune!

My View as a Provoan

Other than the ridiculous man-trashing Switch It ManTM, these budget items are all aimed at the worthy goal of conserving energy which I support and try to incorporate in my personal life. Yet when considering dire situation of the Federal Government, now bankrupt at $14T in the hole and desperate to borrow more money, I must condemn spending like this and insist that our leaders do not spend or seek to spend borrowed money. This unspent money did not stimulate the economy during the past two years and will have to be paid back with interest. Our local leaders must catch the vision of keeping federal monies strictly for federal projects, not for rebates for Provoans to insulate their homes at the expense of all U.S. taxpayers.

But don't let Switch It ManTM get you in the blues too bad, it's Valentine's Day weekend. As soon as the first-come-first-serve Stimulus funds run out, like a lovefraud con man Switch It ManTM will only be a bad memory except the debt he leaves you with. So go to SwitchItProvo.com and get rid of the old fridge and the old husband and kiss your new lover Switch It ManTM. Oh, and hey...turn the lights off!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Hatch's Record: A FCINO "Demon Sheep" Responsible For The Debt Threat

Responsibility Placed For Our National Debt Threat

With the Federal Reserve now monetizing our $14T debt, it is clear we are on the morning of a major economic downtown with high probabilities of hyperinflation, a downgraded of our bond rating, and/or removal of the dollar as being the world's reserve currency. Any one of these three threats would cause a greater financial disaster than the current recession we have; all three are well on their way to becoming reality. This crisis was caused by individual members and leaders of both parties in Congress over decades of undisciplined spending and earmarks, and of recent note includes signatures on bills from both Presidents Bush and Obama.

Spending Cuts: The Only Solution to Our Debt Crisis

No longer is terrorism my foremost concern for the defense of our country: it is instead the defense of our economic system which can ONLY be resolved through massive spending reduction. Democrats might agree on principles that the debt is a threat, but more often than not their solution is to raise taxes. My counter is that the population is already overtaxed and historically governments have been overthrown for less taxation than we are already suffering. Additionally, both Republicans and Democrats have proved time after time that increased taxation is a "green light" for them to increase spending. This would only exacerbate the problem.

So we must cut. We have to cut everything if we are to have any chance late in this fourth quarter of avoiding looming economic disaster. Entitlements including Social Security and Medicare, defense spending, earmarks, and even petty things like Obama's staff and innumerable czars have to take net hits. Fresh-faced Republicans in the 112th Congress get it and have proposed $2.5T in cuts over 10 years. This is a superb start and so much better than the spending spree of the Democrats, yet hardly enough to balance the budget or avert financialgeddon. I support these cuts, but demand more--much more. We must balance the budget within four years like McCain promised during the 2008 debates (NY Times transcript).

While the House is on to the gig, the Senate is way behind. And the finger must be pointed at fiscal liberals who have helped create this disaster--and that includes our current Senator Orrin Hatch. I have already documented that Hatch has contributed to the problem through his prolific earmarking (see "Hatch Opposes His Own Earmarks", "Hatch Proposes UTOPIA Bailout", Dec 2010).

Hatch's FCINO Record

When Hatch was sworn into office in January 1977, our entire national debt was a mere $0.6T (publicdebt.treas.gov, Wikipedia)--less that the widely-unsuccessful spending aka "stimulus" bill passed in 2009 to defibrillate our economy. Currently the national debt stands over 20 times greater at $14T. By no means is Hatch singlehandedly responsible for this debt, yet the impression of many a Republican in Utah is that Hatch has tried to stem the inevitable tide of Democratic Big Government. If that were true, I'd argue that given 34 years, Hatch has been pretty ineffective in averting economic disaster and we should pass the reigns to another.

Instead of being the chief scissors-operator some GOP Utahns believe he his, Hatch has been hiding his spending ways to his constituency behind his FCINO Demon Sheep clothing (Campaign Ad, Carly Fiorina 2010). Take as evidence the Political Courage Test sponsored by the non-partisan, non-profit Project Vote Smart (PVS): Hatch refuses to participate to let us know where he stands.

"Senator Orrin G. Hatch repeatedly refused to provide any responses to citizens on issues through the 2006 National Political Awareness Test." (PVS, Issues Positions)

If Hatch were a fiscal conservative, then to a Utah electorate he should be unafraid to tout his fiscal conservancy and ideas for cutting the budget to reduce the deficit. Hatch's problem is that he's a fiscal liberal who won't find major areas of the budget to cut. This is evidenced by Hatch's response to the PVS "Presidential Election 2000 National Political Awareness Test" where he did reveal his fiscal preferences.

The 2000 PVS Test1 questioned candidates on 13 areas of the budget asking them to identify on a five-point scale from "greatly decrease" to "greatly increase" where they stood with funding. Hatch's revealing answers to this test precluded a single area of the budget for cuts. (Orrin Hatch, 2000 PVS Test Responses) Indeed, coupled with areas of desired fiscal expansion, Hatch's responses would be indicative of an expansion of the budget, not a retraction. In further support of this claim, the PVS Test gave Hatch an opportunity to list "Other" areas of the budget he could elaborate on response and Hatch declined to do so, thus leaving the foregone conclusion that Hatch wanted to increase the budget, a tenant of fiscal liberalism.

The Balanced Budget Amendment: Hatch's Signature Sheep's Cloth

Hatch's signature sheep's cloth is his longstanding support for a Balanced Budget Amendment. While such is a commendable good start and one I support, as evidenced above Hatch has long ignored his own constitutional budget duties to walk the talk and pass responsible budgets within the current scope of the constitution. If the answer to Congressional spending relies uniquely upon a Balanced Budget Amendment as Hatch's record points to, I predict fiscal failure for our country before we get around to it. Hatch has been trying fairly unabatedly for the past three decades to get it through Congress--including a time when Republicans held majorities in both houses. Were even Congressional passage to occur, 3/4 of the states would still have to pass--a process historically taking years at best.

Hatch's support for the Amendment provides what he thinks is cover for his well-documented spending spree and fiscal liberalism. I believe Hatch's sheepskin is rapidly falling off revealing a FCINO to his Utah constituency rightfully panicked by an inescapable debt.



1 As background, in 2000 our national debt stood at a breathtaking $5T: to any professed fiscal conservative this is a massive, multi-bell alarm to cut spending, a firestorm out of control.