Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Orson Swindle: Featured Blogger

Remember the tale about the Pied Piper?

In 1284, the town of Hamelin is suffering from a terrible plague of rats. The town council tries everything to get rid of them -- without success. At last, the Mayor promises 1000 florins to the one who can put an end to the plague.

A stranger dressed in bright red and yellow clothes shows up and says he can rid Hamelin of the rats. At night, the stranger starts to play a soft tune on a flute, luring all the rats out of the houses and barns towards the river Weser, where they drown.

The Mayor refuses to pay the piper: "Playing a tune on a flute is not worth 1000 florins. Get out of Hamelin!"

But the piper returns on a Sunday morning, when all the grown-ups are at church. Again he starts to play a tune on his flute. This time, all the children follow him, as he walks out of the gate to the mountains. Suddenly, a cave opens in the mountain. The piper walks into the mountain, still followed by the children, and the cave closes again.

The children were never seen again in Hamelin. Read here:( )

In the Robert Browning poem, to which many of us were introduced, the Pied Piper is selling his talents to the Hamelin city council,

``Please your honours,'' said he, ``I'm able, ``By means of a secret charm, to draw ``All creatures living beneath the sun, ``That creep or swim or fly or run, ``After me so as you never saw! ``And I chiefly use my charm …”

Beware of charmers!

Combine difficult times, a sense among many (stoked by the President and the media) of impending doom, an incredibly effective orator, a swooning press and deceit and you have a formula for the disaster with which we are being threatened. Ever the charming Pied Piper, Obama lied to the Country last night. Just a few examples:

No pork in the stimulus package --- click here and draw your own conclusion --- he lied.

(A friend of mine, a financial businessman in NY, offered this upon seeing one piece of the largess granted to NY --

"An ‘earmark’ requires a member of congress to make a specific request for funds. So, this plan to bail out a developer's failing plan to build a new arena to house the New Jersey Nets isn't technically an "earmark" because the funds will be directed by Democrat Governor Patterson and Democrat Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz. (There might be more pork than (at) a South Carolina BBQ, but don't you DARE call it an earmark!) Doesn't it give you a nice feeling to know that "yes we can" uses eminent domain and government debt to deprive citizens of their private property so that "we" can advance the private interests of the politically connected? After all, that's what "change" was all about, wasn't it."

Worst economic situation since the Great Depression -- I guess Obama has forgotten the Carter Administration conditions of inflation over 12%, 21% interest rates and unemployment topping 11% -- he lied.

No willingness by Republicans to work with Dems on a consensus bill -- he lied.

Bush policies led to the mess we are in -- We know there is plenty of blame to go around to the greedy, arrogant and deceitful operatives of the banking, investment and finance crowd; to the Congress for failing to enforce regulations; and to consumers and lenders for abandoning prudent home purchase and mortgage decisions -- he lied.

4 million new or saved jobs --- there is not a person living who can detail how or predict whether that will be accomplished --- he lied.

Most economist support his economic stimulus plan -- many, many do not (read here) -- he lied.

But, he does it so smoothly. Hope you heard MSNBC's Chris Mathews and his expressions of ecstasy over last night's performance by Obama. America, we are in deep trouble.

Elections have consequences and like the children of Hamelin, many are hearing the Siren's Song, that enticing and deceptively alluring plea from The One.

This “economic stimulus” package of the Democrats (and only three Republicans) is loaded with ineffective spending to accomplish the stated goal of jump starting the economy and creating (or saving) 3-4 million jobs

The Senate Republicans offered an alternative for half the price with tax cuts and spending mechanisms far more likely to stimulate the economy right now. But, so much for negotiations with those hell bent for socializing our government and economy.

Consider the list below of one attempt to put the details on the table -- an updated list of wasteful and non-stimulative spending contained in the text of the Nelson-Collins (amendment to the Senate Bill) “stimulus” compromise.

The list contains more than $15 billion worth of spending that would exclusively benefit federal employees, such as renovations for new offices, hybrid cars and workplace safety.
One of the more egregious provisions in the bill would be a $1,500 tax credit to anyone that purchases “neighborhood electric vehicles,” which are actually golf carts. Additional benefits are available for motorcycles and three-wheeler purchases. (Section 1151 of the Nelson-Collins amendment) hybrid cars

$3 million for purchasing “neighborhood electric vehicles” (golf carts)
$5.5 billion for making federal buildings "green" (including $448 million for DHS HQ)
$650 million for the Digital Television (DTV) transition coupon program
$1.2 billion for summer jobs for youth
$200 million for workplace safety in USDA facilities
$200 million for public computer centers at community colleges and libraries
$75 million for the Smithsonian Institution
$750 earmark for the National Computer Center in MD
$224 million for International Boundary and Water Commission – U.S. and Mexico
$198 million to design and furnish the DHS headquarters
$10 million to fight Mexican gunrunners
$850 million for Amtrak
$100 million for lead paint hazard reduction
$39 billion slush fund for "state fiscal stabilization" bailout
$275 million for flood prevention
$65 million for watershed rehabilitation
$255 million for "priority procurements" at Coast Guard (polar ice breaker)$650 million for abandoned mine sites
$1.3 billion for NASA (including $450 million for "science" at NASA)
$100 million to clean up sites used in early U.S. atomic energy program
$10 million for urban canals
$1.5 billion for carbon capture projects under sec. 703 of P.L. 110-140 (though the original section only authorizes $1 billion for five years)
$300 million for hybrid and electric cars for federal employees
$500 million for State and local fire stations
$180 million for construction of Bureau of Land Management facilities
$500 million for wild land fire management
$110 million for construction for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
$522 million for construction for the Bureau of Indian Affairs
$412 million for CDC headquarters
$500 million earmark for NIH facilities in Bethesda, MD
$100 million for constructing U.S. Marshalls office buildings
$300 million for constructing Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) office buildings
$800 million for constructing Federal Prison System buildings and facilities
$307 million for constructing National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) office buildings
$1 billion for administrative costs and construction of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) office buildings
$160 million for "volunteers" at the Corp. for National and Community Service

Submitted by ASO member: Orson Swindle

Orson Swindle served for eight years with the Reagan Administration, the last four as Assistant Secretary of Commerce, and recently, over seven years as a Commissioner at the Federal Trade Commission. A career Marine Corps officer and fighter pilot, he was a prisoner of war in Hanoi, Vietnam for over six years.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Tons of great information in this entry...can we do anything other than hope the President is right though? I mean the elections are over; the Dems won. Now, we as a Nation have to deal with the consequences. I am rooting for this to work, but I am with you in that I am not very confident.

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