Archive for December 26th, 2011

December 26, 2011

Sen. Harry Reid’s Unicorns: Fact Checking A Whopper

There are 236,883 tax filers with incomes of a million dollars or more. By Harry Reid’s count, only one percent, or 2,361 of them, are business owners, and a tiny fraction of them create jobs. I do not know what Harry means when he says “a tiny fraction of a tiny fraction.” If we let 5 percent represent Harry’s “tiny fraction,” we are left with 118 businesses owners who earn a million or more and create jobs. Yes, they are only slightly less rare than unicorns, if Harry is to be believed.

This leaves 236,765 million-dollar-plus tax payers, most of whom are “hedge fund managers and wealthy lawyers” who “don’t create jobs and don’t need tax breaks.”

My Google search for Harry Reid’s quarter million hedge fund managers and wealthy lawyers came up empty handed. I could identify at most sixteen thousand “wealthy lawyers and hedge fund managers,” not Harry Reid’s quarter million.

Well, Harry Reid’s numbers leave much to be desired, but maybe he is right that millionaire business owners do not create jobs.

What does the IRS have to say about this? Millionaire tax filers earn a total taxable income of $623 billion, on which they pay the highest average rate (30 percent) of any tax bracket. (Either Warren Buffet’s secretary has an incompetent tax accountant or Buffet has some pretty juicy tax breaks. I think the latter is more likely). A 1.9 percent tax surcharge on million-dollar-earners would yield $11 billion, assuming those shifty millionaires take no evasive action to avoid the tax.

via Sen. Harry Reid’s Unicorns: Fact Checking A Whopper – Forbes.

December 26, 2011

The “Let’s Brainwash American Children Club” Has a New Member

Venerable Scholastic has joined progressive educators and teachers unions in an effort to indoctrinate and radicalize American school children.

President California Teachers Empowerment Network

Scholastic, a student magazine that has been in business for over 90 years, has caught the progressive fever. (H/T Mary Grabar.) This malady affects common sense and good judgment and leads the afflicted to report news from a biased, progressive viewpoint.

In its December issue, Scholastic, which purports to “believe that all sides of the issues of our times should be fairly discussed — with deep respect for facts and logical thinking,” gets all gooey-eyed about the Occupy Wall Street phenomenon, mentioning that OWS concerns itself with “protesters,” “voicing concerns,” “Americans wanting more opportunity to share in company’s prosperity,” and “workers that they feel that they can never get ahead.” To be sure, some of these types are present at OWS events.

But, Scholastic omits a few inconvenient details, like the fact that the OWS camps have been a magnet for Communists, anarchists, street hustlers, and common criminals and have been breeding grounds for murder, rape, vandalism, robbery and anti-Jewish sentiment. The filth left by many of these criminals — I mean protesters — has taxed municipal sanitation systems at great cost to taxpayers. As of December 9th, there were 417 incidents in all. You would think that Scholastic could have managed to mention that all is not sweetness and light in OWSland.

How did Scholastic treat the Tea Partiers? Not so well. Tina Korbe at Hot Air quotes from the October 2010 Scholastic,

“Tea Party candidates also had some surprise wins in primary elections, which determine who will represent their political parties on the November ballot. Christine O’Donnell, a candidate for Vice President Joseph Biden’s Senate seat in Delaware, was backed by the Tea Party. She has since become known as the candidate who has had to declare publicly that she is ‘not a witch.’

“In Nevada, Sharron Angle, a Tea Party-backed Republican candidate, has become a real threat to U.S. Senator Harry Reid, who currently serves as the Senate Majority Leader. Reid called out the big guns to go up against his opponent. Former President Bill Clinton was recently in Nevada campaigning for him and warning voters against casting their ballots in anger.

“’If any time in your life you make an important decision when you’re mad, there’s an 80 per cent chance you’re going to make a mistake,’ Clinton said at a rally for Reid. ‘I don’t want people to abandon their anger. I want them to channel it so they can think clearly.’”

So, the OWSers have “concerns” but the Tea Partiers are “angry.” Christine O’Donnell is reduced to her unfortunate “Not a witch” comment, but Harry “Taxes are voluntary” Reed gets only positive words. (Just a personal note – I have been to many Tea Parties and have spoken at a couple and never saw or heard about any rapes robberies, assaults, vandalism or Jew hatred. And the area the Tea Party was held was in pristine condition after those involved held their event and went home.)

We would be lucky if it were just a student magazine like Scholastic that is spreading the bowdlerized OWS message to kids, but this is just not the case. Just a few examples of other offenders are the people behind the Facebook page Teach • Occupy Wall Street which claims,

“Teach Occupy Wall Street is for educators to share ideas, lesson plans, resources, website, youtubes, classroom practice etc. as we teach about the Occupy Wall Street movement. It is important for teachers to model civic courage to their students — the notion that we should act as if we live in a real democracy. One way to do that is to engage students in deep thinking about what is going on in the world around them. Spread the word. Teach OWS!”

Where to begin? “…we should act as if we live in a real democracy.” Don’t these “educators” know that our founders gave us not a democracy but a republic? Benjamin Franklin put the reason for this succinctly, “Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.”

Then there are the teachers unions that have done their best to take advantage of the class warfare sentiment inherent in the OWS movement, whose motto could very well be “I’m poor because you’re rich.” As I wrote back in October,

“A couple of weeks ago, United Federation of Teachers President Michael Mulgrew and American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten made sympathetic statements about the Occupy Wall Street movement. Now the California Teachers Association has jumped in with a full endorsement and suggestions on its website as to how teachers and others can get involved in OWS activities.

“Stunning in its mendacity, CTA issued a press release (H/T Mike Antonucci) which announced its “support of the nationwide ‘Occupy Wall Street’ movement for tax fairness and against corporate greed.” It goes on to say, ‘…a stable tax structure begins with everyone paying their fair share.’”

Additionally, when OWS fever was peaking last month, teachers actually called in sick and encouraged their students to join them in solidarity with other protesters on the frontlines.

At the end of the day, school children are being manipulated, lied to and taught a one-sided, distorted view of the world. From the mainstream media, many of their teachers and their unions and “educational” magazines, kids are getting hit foursquare with highly politicized, progressive propaganda. Its purveyors have no interest in education or the truth, only presenting the “facts” that fit their worldview. It’s disgusting and everyone involved in this enterprise should be ashamed of themselves.

Larry Sand, a former classroom teacher, is the president of the non-profit California Teachers Empowerment Network – a non-partisan, non-political group dedicated to providing teachers with reliable and balanced information about professional affiliations and positions on educational issues.

December 26, 2011

A Message from the California Republican Party Chairman: Redistricing Bombshell & 3 Things You Can Do Before New Years

Total vindication.

That’s the only reasonable response to the bombshell report released today by ProPublica, a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalism website, titled “How Democrats Fooled California’s Redistricting Commission.” The report systematically lays out the corrupt manipulation of what should have been an open and transparent process.

Once you’ve read through the report, I want you to do three things:

  1. Pat yourself on the back for knowing you helped do the right thing by supporting the CRP’s referendum efforts.
  2. Call your local talk radio station and/or write your local newspaper and demand an immediate investigation.
  3. Forward this report to your friends and followers on Facebook and Twitter ASAP.

Here’s what the San Jose Mercury News reported about the redistricting scandal today:

“California’s congressional Democrats ran a secret effort earlier this year to manipulate the work of the independent citizen’s panel that drew the state’s new political districts, foiling the intent of reformers who sought to remove the redistricting process from the control of party bosses.

“Democrats met behind closed doors at the party’s Washington, D.C. headquarters, hired consultants, drew their ideal districts and presented maps to the panel through proxies who never disclosed their party ties or “public interest” groups created specifically for the purpose. In many cases, the panel responded by doing just what the Democrats wanted.”

You can read the entire article HERE. Here’s my official response:

“The ProPublica report vindicates my repeated contention that the redistricting process was hijacked. That report, however, is just the tip of the iceberg. The corruption of the process went far beyond what was disclosed in that report. No fair minded person can now say the process or the result was fair.  I am calling for an immediate and thorough investigation, by Congressional and State authorities, to get to the bottom of this obviously corrupted process.  Beyond that, the Congressional and Senate lines as drawn by the Commission should not be used in any way for the upcoming elections.”

Once again. “That report…is just the tip of the iceberg.”

You know that I’ve been petitioning the Redistricting Commission, from the very beginning, to conduct itself with openness and fairness, just like California voters asked when they voted in favor of Prop 11 and 20. In March, I recommended that the commission hire bi-partisan line drawing experts and Voting Rights Act counsel to assist them with re-drawing legislative lines to avoid the commission being cast as a partisan one. Instead, they chose to ignore my advice and hired Q2 Data and Research, a firm widely known for its ties to Democrats. Please read the letter I sent to the commissioners regarding this decision.

I also chronicled the Commission proceedings with pieces on Flash Report and Fox and Hounds Daily, which points out the high level of partisanship involved with the selection of Q2 Data and Research.

Shortly thereafter, it was revealed by Cal Watch Dog that one of the commissioners, Dr. Gabianno T. Aguirre, had made multiple political campaign contributions to Democratic candidates and has a special “web of connections” with a special interest group that submitted its own redistricting proposals to the commission. Again, a clear violation of the Redistricting Commission’s rules.

I called for him to step down as his involvement compromised the commission’s integrity. Those calls fell on deaf ears, and Dr. Aguirre was allowed to maintain his position on the Commission.

In the Sacramento Bee, I stated that the Citizens Redistricting Commission ‘failed to consistently apply the criteria mandated by law when drawing the Assembly, Senate, congressional, and Board of Equalization maps.

Now it’s time for you to step up and let your voice be heard. Once again, we need to work together to demand accountability in all phases of government, even from non-partisan commissions who got fooled by the Democrats. Make calls, write letters, let your network know about this bombshell report.  Thanks again for all your hard work and service!

Tom Del Beccaro

CRP Chairman

via Redistricing Bombshell & 3 Things You Can Do Before New Years.

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