Thursday, May 31, 2012

Ed Robinson: The Gift That Just Keeps Giving to Us

Wait, Don't Tell Us, Let Us Guess.... Is It Another Story of Ed Robinson Getting Thrown In Jail???   YESSSSSSSSSSS !!!!!!!!


     Now we know how the National Enquirer felt every time Elizabeth Taylor got married again..  Yes, Florence's favorite city councilman (if by 'favorite' you mean the one who can't stay out of trouble) did it again..  According to a news report in yesterday's SCNow.com, Ed Robinson was arrested and briefly detained this past April 10th 400PM at a Myrtle Beach Food Lion after a confrontation with the manager, when he refused to produce ID to purchase alcohol, or for the police who arrived later.  For those of you without a calendar in front of you, April 10th was a Tuesday - but we'll just assume he and his wife were on vacation...




     Yeah, we're beating a dead horse, and we're sure most of you have heard this story already, so we won't go too much into it, except to say as usual, Ed Robinson took an everyday situation, and turned into a gigantic incident.  In other words, it was just like ant Florence City Council meeting he attends, except at the City-County Complex, no one gets arrested.  Once he steps off of N. Irby Street, it seems that Ed always get arrested - and he always does it to himself... Need proof? In the article, Robinson claims HE called the cops, not Food Lion, because they were insulting his wife.  That does make a lot of sense, because a retail establishment's main goal is to give justifiable cause for it's patrons to leave without buying anything...


     We've personally dealt with Ed in situations like this, and we can attest, he is not a rational person.  We had to verify his car insurance for a rental once, and there was a small problem, and he just about lost it before we told him we'd work it out, it would just take a minute. That's Ed Robinson in a nutshell: He looks for reasons to get pissed off.   A shrink would call it paranoia, but our degree is in the mail right now, so we'll avoid judging officially...


     No, this incident is yet another small potato in the bushel basket of minor arrests Ed's had.  Does he deserve to go to jail for this mess? Of course not, but it's further proof that District Two in Florence City surely could find someone else to represent them.  As far as being Mayor? Give us a f**king break.... 


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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Smile Mr. Candidate, You're on Candid Camera! Keeping Up With the Political Paparazzi ....

Rest Assured, No Matter Where You Are, There Is Always a 19 Year Old Wannabe Douche Around, Taping Everything You Say....


    Campaigning is no picnic.  We've done our share, and honestly we were never good at the retail politicking. Knocking on someone's door like a Jehovah's Witness or a vacuum cleaner salesman wasn't our favorite.  We always preferred the bigger aspects of running for office: mailers, robocalls, media interviews, and meeting people at every non-political event we could find...


    Of course, we were never bigtime, so exposure was never a problem for us.  The major candidates are always under a microscope. We might have said something stupid once or twice on the trail, but the media were never around to catch it - plus it was just before Facebook, Twitter or even YouTube took off.  But in today's viral age, assholes with a recorder or camera are EVERYWHERE.  



    Yes, a bad moment at a 'partisan' event can ruin any campaign... Ask former Virginia Senator George Allen.  His 'Macaca' moment is forever engrained as the classic Oops Moment on camera in recent political history.   The rule of thumb is if something works once, do it over and over again, because lightning often does strike twice in politics...


   It's pretty simple.  Campaigns or parties find a college intern who generally doesn't know jack shit about politics, and make him follow an opponent wherever they go on the campaign trail.  Like we said, they're usually kids, so most don't even know what they're looking for, much less what they're taping.  So, the campaign gives them a list of key words to look for, and try to mark when it was said.  Armed with this, the intern goes out on the trail, and tapes endless hours of junk - trying to find the ten second snippet that will submarine their opponent.  Call it the political needle in the haystack..


   No, any paid political staffer would never waste hours of their time taping and going through this crap for probably nothing - but that's precisely what interns are for. They're just so jacked to be there, they'll do anything... I guess it beats making coffee or stuffing envelopes, but if it were us, our answer would be 'You're kidding, right?' .  Then again, we never were good soldiers....


    However, much like the Wildcat Offense, eventually the surprise is gone, and the candidates get hip to the trick.  Even George Allen, who despite being taped at EVERY event he has in this year's run for Senator against Tim Kaine, has yet to be caught on tape doing anything stupid again...  Hey, maybe that envelope stuffing job is more useful after all!


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Presume No More, Republicans - Mitt Romney Is Your Guy

Guy Smiley Clinches the GOP Nomination After Texas Win....


      And now for the most anticlimatic post of the Month - Mitt Romney wins the Republican nomination.  Yep, he got the 88 delegates needed to reach the magic 1144 to secure his name at the top of the Republican ticket.  That's about it...


      Not much else to say, is there?  It's been a foregone conclusion since February, but with any process, it takes time to become official - especially with the new format that parsed out delegates based on vote totals, rather than winner take all.  In hindsight, we did like it better this way. In 2008, we were all clinched by March.  ZZZZZZZZZZ!!  At least we got an extra month or so out of this cycle.  Now what do we talk about?   Nevermind, we always find something stupid going on in DC, Columbia or Florence..


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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Mitt, Please - Avoid Donald Trump Like The Clap ..



      We always got a good laugh from an old MTV clipback in the 80's.  It was an interview with the German Heavy Metal band, The Scorpions - or as we called them Das Scorpions.  It was one of those mid-tour interviews, and they were talking about doing videos.  Matthias Jabs said something that always stayed with me: 'There are things in the videos that you can see..... and other things that, uh - you SHOULD NOT see.'   That's our two cents of political advice for Mitt Romney today...


   Different people have different skill sets, and in politics, it's no different.  However, there are people who you go out on stumps with, in front of 50,000 people - like Chris Christie, John McCain, and to a lesser degree, smaller people who get you press, like Nikki Haley.  Then, there the others.  That is, those who probably have very good advice to give you on certain matters, but whom you should NEVER be seen in public with.  We should know - we ARE one of those people!   We give advice all the time, and most of them follow it - and those who don't usually regret it afterwards. But, will we ever be seen behind them at a podium? Hell no... Who would admit they listen to us?


    That is the lesson Mitt Romney will likely learn after being seen with Donald Trump this weekend.. While we will rarely doubt The Donald's business sense, that is about all he knows.  In politics, you meet with the smart businesspeople in private, locked away offices, clubs or charity events.  You don't get on stage with them.  Why? Because on just about all other issues, Trump doesn't know his ass from his elbow.  However, his inability to get off the damned Birther Issue kills Romney by association - and that's all it takes.  It doesn't matter how smart overall you are. In politics, you are only as smart as your dumbest stance, and Donald Trump looks like a total moron on it...


    Of course, there are other reasons as well... Mainly that Donald Trump is an egomaniac.  First, he considers running for President.  Then after, he tried to 'moderate' a debate between the GOP candidates earlier this year.  Why? So he could get all his opinions in, and try to look smarter than the legitimate candidates.  Trump doesn't do things to put himself on an even level with you - he does it to make himself look better than you.  The reason is simple: Donald Trump thinks he is the smartest guy in the world...


    Most people like Trump shouldn't and don't run for President.  By that, I mean people who go straight from CEO's to President.  Why? Because as CEO, you are the RULER.  The President may be the Big Cheese, but that is a huge block of cheese, and lots of others control parts of that block...  People like Romney do: they run a company, then they get into politics at smaller levels than President and work their way up.. Trump's ego is too big to run for Governor or Senator.  Now if America had a King, Trump would go right for it...


   There's no doubt that Donald Trump wants Mitt Romney to beat Barack Obama in November, and he'd be willing to do anything to achieve it.  Unfortunately, sometimes you do more for a guy by NOT doing certain things.  In this case, Romney needs to confer on occasion with Trump, and have The Donald raise as much cash as possible for him.  As far as going on the road with him, our answer is no f**king way.....  If Romney reads any papers or watches any TV, he just learned that lesson.


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Guess Chicago Can Call It the Memorial Weekend Massacre..

It Was Just Like the Good Old Days....... Except Even Al Capone Didn't Shoot 40 People in a Weekend !


      Yeah, we all had a lot of fun this weekend, didn't we?  This is what is wrong with America sometimes.  While you, me and the rest of normal America are taking a couple days off, enjoying the beginning of Summer and barbecueing, the gangs in Chicago spent the whole weekend shooting at each other - and hurting dozens of innocent people in the process.  Not that shooting kids should bother them...


     All totalled, 40 people were shot and 10 killed in the Windy City (guess they call it that for all the bullets whizzing by) over the Memorial Day weekend.  Our undertstatement of the week goes to Chicago Police Chief Garry McCarthy:  'Clearly we have a gang problem in the city of Chicago'.   Uhh, no shit, Chief..... However, that's not even the dumbest thing going around Chi-Town over this.  Mayor and former Obama Chief of Staff Rahm Enamuel is blaming this on - wait for it - the overabundance of liquor stores!  So far they've shut down four, so by 2257 they should have the problem resolved.  The town I went to college had a higher bar per capita rate than Chicago, and I don't remember anyone being shot....


    Still, others are noting the warm weather, and just like the early start to job hiring, crime isn't waiting til Summer either.  Call it crazy from the heat...  We'd like to find another bad excuse and blame it on Derrick Rose blowing his knee out and getting the Bulls an early exit from the NBA Playoffs.  Hey, if they riot over winning, you think they wouldn't start shooting when they lost?


    But fear not, my scared Americans.  First off, Chicagoans rarely leaving town, so unless you have a trip planned, you should be safe.  Thank God for deep dish pizza - it always keeps 'em home!  Also, the cops are on the case. How you ask?  Well.... by monitoring Facebook, Twitter, and other forms of social media, which gangs like to use.  Someone tell Mark Zuckerberg that his Utopian ideal   of social media has been perverted.  Forget about your parents on Facebook - the day Pookie and Slice start using it, it's time to get off.  Then again, that may make it even more appealing...


    No my friends, it's not that gangs left and suddenly came back - they never left.  Not in Chicago, LA or New York - and not in Florence, South Carolina either.  They just had a busy enough week to make the news... Then again, organized crime is nothing new in Chicago - you some of a batching corksuckers !!


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Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day 2012 ...


      Like we do every year, we're noting our annual observance of Memorial Day... We're not going to give any heavyhanded trump on your head to remember what Memorial Day is really all about.  We've done that enough previously, others are doing it enough for us this year, and it seems that most people we know have an idea why we mark (celebrate seems an incorrect word ) the day...


    I always note my Uncle Pete, who died in WWII, and my cousin Chris, who is in the 82nd Airborne, every year, but I often forget my Dad and his other brothers all were drafted in The Big One, as they called it.  Pops never went overseas, and stayed at Fort Lewis most of his hitch, and my Uncle Mike was in Alaska, I think.  My Uncle Tom and Sam I have no idea, but I well remember my Uncle Jimmy had a horrendous hitch in Burma.  Nowadays, they call it PTSD, but I guess back then, it was Shell Shock.  He lived past 90, and it never seemed to get away from him. 


    We're going to have a lot of guys like that well after we finish in Afghanistan - and hopefully, that will be soon.  That's what we ask from you today: If you see a Vet, thank him/her for their service, and try to do something for them.  If you work in retail, give them a little discount. If you're at a bar, buy them a drink out of respect.. It's pretty easy to tink of someway to say it, but if you can't, say thanks to them anyway!  And thanks for reading when we're sure you had better things to do today...

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Sunday, May 27, 2012

Jim Clyburn May Have Obama's Ear, But Stephen Wukela Seems To Have Clyburn's....

Jim Clyburn's Impending Endorsement of Preston Brittain Leads Us To Only One Conclusion - That Mayor Stephen Wukela Is Secretly Running the United States From Florence...


    So much for the hubbub that Jim Clyburn was secretly financing and backing Gloria Bromell-Tinibu for the 7th Congressional seat.  Even we bought into it initially, but after a while, we started wondering why he wasn't doing anything if the race would be so tight.  Now we have our answer.  After numerous mis-endorsements (remember Dick Gephardt in 2004?), The Whipper has learned to be coy and wait until everything plays out.  He's lucky he did, because he was pretty close to endorsing Ted Vick for Congress, having attended a Vick fundraiser in DC in March.


    According to SCNow.com, Clyburn will instead endorse Myrtle Beach attorney Preston Brittain for the primary instead on Tuesday.  More interesting than the endorsement itself is who, more than likely, talked Clyburn into it - Florence Mayor Stephen Wukela.  No, we didn't ask P-Luv about it.  But, Wukela's ability to wrap our soon to be former Congressman around his itty-bitty pinkie is intriguing.. What makes us think that Wukela pulled this off? Rather than go to Myrtle Beach and endorse Brittain, where he can catch a round or two of golf, Clyburn is instead going to WUKELA'S OFFICE in Flotown to announce it.  Maybe he'll get in 18 holes at Trace or The Crossings instead - I doubt FCC or CCSC will let him in!


    Give Clyburn a little credit.... As much as he will never listen to any Republican that is smarter than him, he has a knack for heeding the advice of Democrats who have more brains than him.  Given this now-confirmed knowledge, we can only draw one conclusion: since Barack Obama supposedly looks to Jim Clyburn for advice, and Clyburn is now controlled by Stephen Wukela, it's obvious to us that Barack Obama is Stephen Wukela's puppet.  Is Wukela using this power yet? We doubt it, but if we were him, we would....  Whatever Clyburn and Obama have been coming up with together sure isn't working.






Hey, if it's good enough for Jeff Dunham, why not?







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Today's Kooky Not-Facebook Pic..



Like we always say, give a woman anything, and she'll make a handbag out of it.  I'm embarrassed to say it, but for a single guy, I know WAY TOO MUCH about handbags.... Yes, I actually know the difference between a Louis Vuitton, a Michael Kors, a Gucci,a Prada and a Dooneybag - although I likely wouldn't know a knockoff from an original.



Of all of them, I have to say this is my favorite.. You're not seeing things - it's a handbag Sarah made from Capri Sun juice bags!  Why is my favorite?  First off, it only cost about $4 for the juice, which was about $300 less than it cost me to buy her Mom's bag.  But mainly, because it's cute, it involves ingenuity, and she did it herself. Best of all, it's actually functional, because those those Capri Sun pouches are pretty sturdy.  Have you ever tried to get the straw through one of those suckers?  Good luck..  No, it has nothing to do with politics, although I suppose I could go on a tangent about self-reliance and today's excess - but we'll just settle for something being cute.


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Cartoons of the Week ..




The good news is the political cartoons were on holiday special this week, so we got a bargain on a couple of them before they went bad over the weekend.. The tough part is they're OK, nothing special this week.  In politics, Barack Obama and his team are still owrking on what didn't work for Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich - attacking Venture Capitalism.  Luckily, this frightened kid is too young to vote...



One story that we meant to write on, but forgot (which is why we usually write these things down) is the survey that found that for the first time ever in 2011, Non-White births outnumbered White births at 50.4%... While some see it as the eventual death of the Republican Party, eventually everyone likes lower taxes and smaller government.  We'll see.  However, if you're White, and you're upset with these numbers, we suggest you get to work and start making babies of your own!




Lastly, and just like we warned you, Facebook's IPO stock is beginning to tank - down 16% since it was put out there.  Hopefully, you weren't like this guy. Drop those books, kids - and get back on the internet!  While these kids are at it, they should check out SC6!



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Friday, May 25, 2012

Au Revoir, Ted Vick.....

The World's Oldest Looking 39 Year Old Calls It Quits...


    And then there were four... Ted Vick, the possible frontrunner for the Democratic nomination in the 7th Congressional District race, has decided to suspend (re: end) his campaign for the seat, and will focus on retaining his current gig as State Representative in Chesterfield.  Good call...  Speeding, DUI, and illegal weapons possession - all with a 21 year old girl in your car - are not good things for a man who is also a pastor in his church to do.  Does it make one a good Congressman?  Maybe not, but it probably would help him find a few 'kindred spirits' in DC..


    Like the GOP race, the Democratic race was pretty muddled, although Vick had by far the most cash on hand - about $300k - so he did have an advantage.  Now that he is gone, the focus turns to attorney Preston Brittain and G'town carpetbagger with a hole in the back that EXACTLY fits Jim Clyburn's hand, Gloria Tinibu..  The White Guy- African American woman battles in the Democratic Party often get testy, so we'll see how it goes in the next few weeks. 


     For us though, we are glad to see Vick get out - if only for his own benefit.  We're not the only ones who noticed, but politics has not been kind to Ted Vick - for he is by far the OLDEST looking 39 year old we've ever seen!  We're sure his wife is tired of being asked 'Do you always kiss your father like that?'...  We took various photos of Vick, had them analyzed, and were able to project what Vick would look like after a first tortuous term in Washington - and this is what we came up with...






It's a good thing he's out, because we don't think he'd make it through a second term!











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SC6 Civil War Rewind, Part Sixteen: 160 Acres, But No Mule

Lincoln Signs the Homestead Act, But It Doesn't Work Until Decades Later, When Tom Cruise Stars in 'Far and Away'....


     Welcome back to our Civil War Rewind Series, where we note significant events from The War Between the States in chronological order - exactly 150 years after they occurred.. Today, we talk about Land.  Land, lotsa Land under sunny skies above!  Particularly the Homestead Act.  Like most you, we had heard of the Homestead Act, but weren't really sure what it was - and especially what it had to do with the Civil War. Well, we did a little reading, and we'll pass that learning onto you guys...


     By the Summer of 1862, things for the North weren't exactly going according to plan.  The war wasn't over in six weeks, and what battles had ensued, particularly in the East, were going badly.  To defeat an enemy, you have two choices: either pound them into submission, or you give them an incentive to quit.  Since the first wasn't happening yet, Abraham Lincoln tried to spice it up a bit with the second.


    Keep in mind, in 1862, very little west of Texas and Kansas had been settled.  In the Great Plains and Rocky Mountains lie millions of acres of open territory not settled.  Yeah, it was mostly inhabited by Indians, but we never really counted them, did we?  Anyway, homesteading had been a part of the Republican platform in 1860, but it obviously took a back seat to the War.  Now, Lincoln decided that it might be a pretty good way to turn the tide in the War..


    The Homestead Act basically gave 160 acres of free land to anyone (and here is the important part) who had never taken up arms against the United States.  Quite a carrot there, right?  Not only was the plan to settle the West, but to settle them all as Free States, even if they were with former residents of the South.  All they had to do was build a home on it, farm it, and keep it for five years, and it was theirs for a small registration fee.  Call it organized bribery, but it was a pretty good deal for anyone who took advantage of it..



    The bad news was, like most things that come out of Washington DC, it wasn't executed as planned.. You see, the land was cheap, but to build a home and equip it with tools, cattle and everything else cost a lot of money - much more than your Average Joe in 1862 had - especially if they'd been choked off economically by the North for over a year.  Few if any in the South took advantage, and the North didn't use it much more initially. Those who did usually moved only slightly more West, like Iowa to Nebraska, or Minnesota to  North Dakota. The bill was so ambiguous, the wealthy mostly took advantage of it. Of the 500 million acres given out in the 19th Century, only 80 million went to true homesteaders.  Most of the land went to speculators, mining companies, railroads and cattlemen.


     On the surface, the Homestead Act was a total bust during the Civil War, because it didn't do it's intended purpose.  Southerners didn't leave their homes for free land, and the war dragged on.  However, it was a staple program for well into the 20th Century.  In fact, more land was granted in the 20th Century through the Homestead Act than in the 19th Century.  Like in the Tom Cruise movie, Far and Away, that takes place in 1893 in Oklahoma.  No, it wasn't as good as Mission Impossible, but at least we learned something..So, even though off the bat, it didn't achieve it's intended purpose, eventually it opened the West to millions of citizens.


     That's our latest installment, but don't worry... We'll be back in about a week with our next chapter!  Thanks for reading our posts on this. We hope you enjoy them as much as we like writing them for you!


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Thursday, May 24, 2012

And There Goes Ted Vick's Campaign... Maybe.

'Hi, Very Nice to Meet You... I'm Ted Vick and I'm Running For Congress... Is This Where I'm Supposed to Post Bail?'


     And........ POOF!  There goes Ted Vick's chances for the Democratic Party nomination for the 7th District Congressional seat of South Carolina.  At least we think so.  Hey, this is South Carolina after all - you never know what will be regarded as a positive trait in a candidate.  If the must have's on your list are:

1. Likes to Speed
2. While Intoxicated and
3. While Having an Illegal Firearm in You Possession

then we have just found you your man!!!!



    Now, we don't know whether Ted Vick was the frontrunner some had claimed he was for the Democratic nod.  Many claim he is actually a Republican, that he is too far from the 7th power base to be seriously considered, and that he has little support from the Democratic Establishment.  That will all be found out soon, and we'd love to hear his explanation (if any) for what happened between Delaney's and Devine Street... But we have an idea it went something like THIS.... Just subsitute 'Dewey' with 'Representative Vick'.


    All of that is conjecture, and if he gets a real good DWI attorney, he'll probably get off.  I can think of one, but he's backing Preston Brittain from what I understand.  We have only two real thoughts on this one: First, we are SOOOOO glad to see some other candidate's mug shot in the paper besides ours and Ed Robinson's.  Personally, we think all politicians should make it fair, and rotate their hi-jinx's so that everyone has some fun...


   Our second regret is that it is real disappointing to see that a guy was speeding, drunk and illegally armed..... and nothing exciting happened!  Seriously, those guys from Chesterfield County know how to raise some hell, and to see Vick just take the cuffs and go to jail was... disappointing.  We were picturing something like the end of 'Thelma and Louise' - where he magically flies his car into the Congaree, hailing bullets all the way.  Then again, we DO like our share of drama.... Good Luck with the Mea Culpa - and the Primary!

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Hey, This Isn't the Pool in The Brochure ...

It's a Good Thing This Resort Is Free, Otherwise We'd Be Pissed !


     Time for us to lay down a little wisdom for the younger readers today.  One very important thing in life to learn is that events rarely, if ever, play out you way you plan them...  Your job, who you marry, where you live, how much you earn - these things rarely are as we expect.  Not everyone can be President or NBA MVP..


    However, the important part to remember is that even the smallest things are not given, and can be sidetracked very easily.  According to a commercial on Cable TV, we make an average of 35,000 decisions every day.  Most of them are easy, but we don't even realize we do it: The car is out of gas. Which biscuit should I have today (I know - none!). There is an accident on the route to work. All of these things are simple A or B decisions me unknowingly make every day. No two days are the same, and it's those unforeseen events that keep life from beign dull.


    Take our trip up here.  Road work everywhere. Instead of the usual 11 hrs, it took us 12 1/2 hours, and we were here so late, everybody else was drunk!  Then the next surprise.  We love swimming.  It's about the onyl exercise we can do in the Summer without dying. So,when the opportunity to swim comes, we take full advantage of it.  Carol had said the pool was ready.... but it turns out the tiles were starting to fall off, so they decided to fix it now, before real pool season starts.  So, instead of blogging poolside, we are doing it from the old guest room - and the pool is empty. 


    Well, sort of empty.... The repairmen were here all week, and just finished yesterday, so right after I took this picture, I put the hose in the pool, and it's SLOWLY filling up with ice cold water.  Our guess is it'll be on for another three or four days, but it's only 70 degrees, and the sun hasn't been out since we got here - but it's coming.  Right now, we're planning on jumpin in next week - but that's always subject to change!

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Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The Brilliance of Corey Flood ...



    It's been a long time since we did a New Music Pick on the blog.   The sad part is there hasn't been much new music around that's floated our boat. That, and we've been listening to POTUS so much, everything's kinda gone right past us....


    In that absence, we watched 'Say Anything' on cable last week for the first time in a while.  While all the girls were dreaming of John Cusack (or even any guy) standing at their driveway, blasting Peter Gabriel's 'In Your Eyes' on his boombox, we admired a much larger musical genius - Lili Taylor's character, Corey Flood.  For anyone who's seen the movie, you know that Corey is in love with Joe, who had been sleeping with her while dating another girl - and that Corey has written 65 songs, all about Joe!  Truly, she is a dedicated artist...


    We swore someone would have a YouTube compilation clip of Corey doing some of the 65 songs, but all we found was this crappy 1:09 segment, taped off of a TV set.  It's poor, but at least it gives you an idea of her angst.  After all, this WAS filmed in Seattle..


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It Looked Like Good News, But ......

Initial Numbers Show Used Home Sale Prices Rise a Robust 11%, But You Gotta Look Inside the Numbers. Meanwhile, Ours Is Still For Sale ..


     Like the always say, the Devil is in the details.... Yes, you could look at just about any statistic, and pound it into a way that makes your point look right.  Politicians do it all the time.  Doing it with Real Estate numbers is pretty easy too. Take the sales numbers for sales of pre-existing homes (used houses for those of you in Allendale).  Yesterday's stat that the median price of a used house went up 11% from 2011 must look like great news right? It's the end of the housing bubble.  We all can start getting Home Equity Loans again (remember them?) and go on vacation!  Uhh, not so fast...


    The problem when you look at numbers from just a previous year, is it all depends on what it was like that year - and the problem was, the housing market was in a free fall in April, 2011.  Remember those little things called foreclosures?  We try to forget also.  Well, when a house goes into foreclosure, it still goes on the market, in what is know as a 'short-sell' house, as in the owner is short on cash, and needs to sell it.  The problem with a short sell house is that if the owners don't have enough money to pay the mortgage, they sure as hell aren't able to maintain them... So generally, these houses are in disrepair, and need lots of basic work. On average, they go at prices 1/3 lower than the same house not being foreclosed on.


    So, what does this have to do with anything?  Well, we are currently in a foreclosure moratorium.  That is, banks have been blocked from foreclosing on anyone for months, until the Government settled with them on their Robo-Banking argument.  So, there are less short-sell houses on the market today than last year... A lot less.


   In 2011, about 36% of all used houses on the market were short-sells.  Today, it is only 27%, and it's not because Americans are catching up financially - it's because they have been protected .  For now.  If we do the math, a 25% reduction in homes that sell 33% less on average means - that you pretty much have that 11% difference.  So, in real terms, housing prices aren't going up - they're flat as a pancake.  If they were rising, would we be getting 30 year mortgages at 3.75%?? Hell no.


     So, once again, we are here to take some semblance of good news for you, and smash your dreams that America is on it's way back.  Until Americans get back to work, the housing market will NEVER recover.  It goes this way: Get Job, Pay Overdue Bills, Save a Couple Dollars, Pay Credit Cards, Buy Car, Save More Money, Buy House.  Housing prices won't go up on their own.  This was a fluke, and until they reopen foreclosures, which isn't far away, more flukes are sure to follow.  Don't thank us for ruining your day - it's our pleasure!


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SC Supreme Court Backs Florence GOP Into a Corner

The Florence County GOP Has Quite a Balancing Act Ahead of Them, As State Supreme Court Puts the Screws to Their Candidate Filing Claim..


    Put up or shut up.  That's in effect what the State Supreme Court has told the Florence County GOP in a complaint filed by Florence Democrats over claims that all of their candidates properly filed for office during the registration period.  In a 6-1 decision handed down yesterday, the SC Supreme Court has requested that the Florence GOP state under oath that the paper copies of the SEI form from the challenging candidates were made and handed in with the other paperwork.  The gauntlet has been dropped....


   In effect, the Supreme Court is putting a gun to the heads of the local party officers, and saying they have one last shot at being honest with them.  Picture the scene in 'Platoon' where they raid the village, and Tom Berenger is yelling 'Ai Kako Dao!!!' over and over. Tom is essentially the Supreme Court, and the FCGOP is the little Vietnamese guy.  Remember, Berenger ended up shooting his wife.... 


    Yes, we will use the pun - Bill Pickle and the FCGOP are in.... yeah - quite a pickle.  Anyone who has been watching the whole filing mess unfold knows that the FCGOP put on it's Facebook page that it did exactly what it was told by the SCGOP and SC Election Commission - a process that we all know was wrong.  Pickle even reiterated this on his radio show before the statement was released.  When the list of accepted challengers and disqualified ones came out, we had our suspicions, because the list by county looked like pointed shotgun blasts:  some counties were blown to bits (Horry, Pickens and Lexington for example), and others were crystalline. Florence seemed odd to us, because we had been hearing what happened for days - from them.  Yes, the whole ruling is unfair, but it's unfair to both parties, and it sure seems like the FCGOP played the Florence Dems. The problem is, it appears to have been illegal...


    The deadline for the FCGOP to take that oath , according to sources, was 12:00 today. Whether they met that deadline,we don't know.  After all, we ARE 700 miles away today.  The big question is what if they don't swear under oath?  Or what if they do?  If they do, there are a whole list of options - the worst of which could be getting charged with perjury to the SC Supreme Court.  There are lesser options, and like we say, we are not legal experts, so who knows what will happen.  The real drama of this is first will the FCGOP fess up and say they went by their own interpretation, or will they stick to their guns and possibly get their heads handed to them?  The evidence to us does not look in their favor.  Definite sources from two different forms of media are pretty solid evidence, but legal aptitude has never been a strong suit in Florence.  They like to see the way things ought to be,  and we can appreciate that.  However, the law is the law, and the law is how things ARE .  



    How it turns out is anyone's guess, but if I were a challenger in Florence County, I'd be getting my petitions ready... Stay tuned. In the meanwhile, we'll spare you the sappy Boy Band version, and give you the John Michael Montgomery version.  Don't ask what's up with with the Japanese subtitles - we have no idea....


As a follow-up, we got another call that the FCGOP has received a June 4th hearing date in front of the Supreme Court on this matter. According to what we are hearing, the key is an interpretation of the law, which FCGOP says includes a blurry interpretation of whether a candidate intending to file is considered a 'public official' before it.  Sort of like if you can no longer consider yourself a virgin if both you and a girl are naked and intending to have sex, but can't because her Mom walked in the room.......... The bigger question is that FCGOP reportedly didn't air this grievance in previous hearings.  All interesting stuff indeed.
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Today's Kooky Facebook Pic ...


    No wonder taxes are so high in Massachusetts!  They have police patrols solely looking for sandwiches????!!!!  No, of course not.  This is a cop car in Sandwich, Massachusetts.  We suppose the joke has gotten old to the locals by now, but to out of towners like my buddy John, it's pretty funny.  Makes us wonder if they have cop cars in Booby, Arizona?  As far as we know, they do the same job cops anywhere else do - although we heard there is a statute mandating every meal be served with chips and a pickle on the side!


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Jim Clyburn Learns You're Only As Smart As the Last Stupid Thing You Say to the Press..

The Ex-Whipper May View Himself As a Democratic Superhero, But the Obama Team's Rebuke of His Comment Is Leaving Him Green...


    Ahh, the long, slow precipitous decline of our Congressman continues.  Once the third ranking member of the US House of Representatives, Jim Clyburn's decline into Cable TV 30 second analyst rolls on.  Slowly, painfully, we watch the man who was known a couple years ago as 'The Sage' - the man who had Barack Obama's ear - drift of into obscurity.  These things happen when yu give bad advice like taking over 1/6's of the US Economy, with no way to pay for it.


   Of course, those are the big things Jim Clyburn has done to become the odd man out in the White House.  Add to that, his getting nothing accompished at last summer's Super Committee Budget gaffe.  Then, there are the little things he says that just eventually add up.. Like everytime he talks about an issue of today, he goes back to 1960 and inherently race-baits on every subject, like on Voter ID.  No one is trying to keep blacks away from the polls - just the people who aren't registered or voting under dead people's names.  Even he said ID at voting is fine, but we're sorry - college ID's are easy to fake, and same day registartion and voting is asking for trouble, because there is no time to verify any of that, and it could throw a close election into chaos if the votes are held until verified.


   Then, there is just the flat-out dumb thing he said this week about Mitt Romney... Let me ask you a question: what do Ann Romney and Jim Clyburn have in common?  Neither has worked in the private sector a single day in the last 40 years.  For those of you who have watch The Whipper in action on fiscal matters, you know he has NO CLUE what he is talking about.  But his overblown 'sense of justice' compels him to say things to point out what he sees as the inequities.  And he's usually wrong, due to his inability to grasp the concept of the Economy.


    This week, it sounds like if Clyburn had his way, Mitt Romney should be charged with 700 counts of sexual assault for what happened to the Steel Plant that went under during Bain Capital's ownership.  That IS what saying that you 'raped the workers' of that plant, right?  Even Obama's staff quickly put out a solid rebuke of the statement - along with a half-hearted question of Romney's activity at Bain during the period.  The truth is, Bain dropped $100 million into that plant, during a time when the steel industry was overglutted with excess product (again - supply and demand).  Where was Mitt Romney? In Salt Lake City, getting the 2002 Winter Olympics back in order.  The steel industry lost $3 billion the year bain took over GST. Lots of them went out of business. It happens in lots of industries all over the world.  Remember Oldsmobile and Saturn?  Think GM would still be around if they hadn't dropped those lines...


    No, Mitt Romney did not stick his dick into every single employee at GST's vagina or ass.  GST fucked themselves, and even Bain couldn't save them.  Employees doing a good job just don't understand how these things work a lot, so they blame the last guy at the controls as the ship sank.  It happens.  Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose.  It's Business.  When you have no experience in it at all, how can you comprehend it?  But, at least you should keep you're mouth shut.


    Still, we're enjoying seeing Jim's slow, painful descent into nonexistence.  It reminds us of a line John Coffey said in The Green Mile - 'It's like thousands of bees stinging me, Boss'.. With each little sting, Jim gets more and more numb with Uselessness.  Now you know how we feel!


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Sunday, May 20, 2012

Cartoons of the Week...


   We're heading to New York in less than an hour, so we're keeping posts to our Sunday minimum.  When we'll be back, we're not sure, but we'll be keeping an eye on it from above.  The political cartoons had a few winners this week. We'll give top prize to Obama's all-inclusive new logo..



As many of you know, the US sucks as far as Science and Math scores (17th and 25th respectively)....  Why? Because the technically advanced products made it too easy to shortcut problem solving, without actually knowing HOW it works!  Fixing our schools are easy - kids have to study. No, it's not fun, but it works...




Lastly, with the Greek citizens voting down austerity measures by their government, the fall of the Greek Empire (sarcasm) may be eminent - and the cartoon here may not be too far off. Let the runs begin!


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Today's Founders Quote: Governing Oneself and Others

"Sometimes it is said that man can not be trusted with government of himself. Can he, then, be trusted with the government of others? Or have we found angels in the forms of kings to govern him? Let history answer this question."

- Thomas Jefferson, 1801.


     Again, a very perninent observation from our third President.  Many people , including some in DC, can't seem to keep their own shit straight.  If that's the case, it makes it nearly impossible for them to take care of others.  How do we know who to believe.  Sometimes, you can't.. It's a crapshoot.  If you're lucky, there will be candidates who have proven themselves previously.  If not, cross your fingers and wish.


     Speaking of wishing, having Tracey McCall (no relation to Glenn) govern our affairs would be sweet.  Dark hair and blue eyes - sweet!

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Saturday, May 19, 2012

Lin Bennett Gets It From All Sides This Week ...

Chucktown Chair and SCGOP First Vice-Chair Tries to Save Candidates From Themselves, To No Avail.  Like June Cleaver Said In Airplane, 'Chump Don't Want No Help, Chump Don't Get No Help'....


     My friends in New York - the ones who don't care about politics - always ask me why I do this for no money. Or worse - at a loss.. It's because I try to make things better, and I care.  Luckily for us, we never held much of a position that would get us blame for anything.  We're sure Lin Bennett does it for the saem reason, but when you work for both the County and State GOP, you're bound to get blamed for everything.


   Not that it's all merited, but it's part of the job... Like we have often said, there are county parties that battle things out - and then there is Charleston County.  When you have a group that large, there are bound to be subset groups that disagree on how things are run.  Of course, our belief is still that if they served food first, they'd all be more agreeable... Maybe not - they'd still probably fight about what to eat!   There is always a section of the GOP that thinks our own party is the problem - that we are overtaxed and government is too big.  My advice is for them to come up to New York sometime.  No, South Carolina is not perfect, but comparatively, it's heaven.   Still, good is still not good enough for some, and they will push as hard as they can, even if they're misguided...


   The first push on Bennett and the local party was the limiting of administrators on the Charleston County GOP's Facebook page.  It's a common occurance, as Florence County has done the same thing.  Media control is part of the party's plan, particularly during Primary time.  While most commenters can be trusted, many engage in mudslinging and conduct not exactly constructive to the party.  Chucktown actually put their decision up to a vote in Executive Committee, where Bennett broke a tie to avoid total freedom of comments.  No, we'd like all to be able to post, but if some can't play nice, others will get punished.  We've only had the Four Horsemen page up a few weeks, and there's been comments that I wished weren't on there.  However, if it ended in a tie, Lin Bennett surely isn't the one to blame.



     The real brouhaha this week came from a few new candidates in the area.  John Steinberger and Peter von Lehe Ruegner have decided to challenge House Speaker Bobby Harrell and District 110 Rep. Chip Limehouse... Steinberger originally planned on running for Glenn McConnell's old Senate seat, but he apparently had a change of plans.  Both are part of a few anti-establishment groups, such as RINO-Hunt, and FairTax advocates.  That's enough for us to think they really don't what the hell they're talking about.  Now of course, does that mean they can't run? Of course not.  They can do whatever they wnat if they're qualified.  Even von Lehe Ruegner, who is all of 22, and just graduated College of Charleston, can theoretically run. 


    Now, here is the problem, but one that is natural.  As County Chair and State Vice-Chair, part of Bennett's job is to get as many good candidates in available spots as possible.  Apparently, she felt that von Lehe Ruegner running against Limehouse - an incumbent that's been in office nearly as long as Peter's been alive - was a waste of a candidate, and she wanted to meet with him to help guide his decision(re: talk sense into him).  This is something we are very familiar with. In 2004, Katon Dawson himself called me to reconsider my Congressional run, and go against John Land instead.  Luckily for me, I didn't live in the District, so my decision was easy.  Like kids, first time candidates are headstrong - there's no telling them anything. von Lehe Ruegner had his mind made up as well, but he decided to up the ante on Bennett....


    At filing time, Peter brought a camera with him to tape the entire process.  Basically, he punked Lin Bennett to show that she might do what she did before - to try to save him from himself.  They all do it.  It's part of their job, and somewhere on the GOP ballot, there is a spot where von Lehe Ruegner's name could have been on it.  It's like going to Wild Wings and ordering a dozen 5-Pepper rated Nuclear Wings.  The waitress asks you five times, 'are you SURE you want that many?'  You do it anyway, because you won't learn until you eat that wing, and burn the shit out of tongue...


     Steinberger and von Lehe Ruegner will perhaps get some pats on the back for taking on The Establishment - much like we speak of the valor of the soldiers from Pickett's Charge. The funny part is that they're attacking Lin Bennett for being in that establishment, but she has lead the charge against Jakie Knotts... Guess they forgot that. It only matters if you support them, not everyone. But soon, when both get waxed and all that's left is the memory, they might look back, realize that Bennett was trying to them a favor, and they'll get it.  Maybe they'll even apologize, but we doubt it...


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Friday, May 18, 2012

It's May 18th, So It's That Time to Review and Reflect



      Ahhh, May 18th... While most of you have no idea what the significance of the date is - other than Memorial Day is right around the corner - for us, it is very important.  You see, May 18, 1991 was the day we graduated college... Yes, 21 years ago, we walked down that runway at the State University of New York, College at Oswego, took our diploma, and moved that little dangly thing on our mortarboard from left to right.  Or was it right to left??? It's been a while...


   Anyway, we remember feeling like walking off that stage was like walking off the gangplank into an ocean of great unknowns.  By the end of that first year, we wished that right after we got the diploma, someone shot us in the head - it was THAT bad.  Not having any guidance certainly didn't help, and not being trained in particularly anything, we were lost.  In a way, we still are.  About six years or so ago, we decided that May 18th was a good marker to review annually about where we are, and what we need to do to to improve.  The way I looked at it, as long as things kept improving things would be alright.  Five years ago was a low point, but we rebounded.  Three years ago was another rough patch, but we had some good friends, and the move to New York went a long way to righting that ship. 


     This time last year, we thought we were pretty content.  For the most part, it was good.  The money was coming in pretty well, even though we spent 11 years in a job that we generally did not like doing, so we just rolled with it.  Personally, I couldn't complain, although I was spending time with someone that was unavailable.  In short, on paper, it looked good, but it was as thin as the paper it wasn't written on - and it caved in.


    Whereas previously, I would get bummed and feel bad for myself, then go right back into the job I hated, this time was different.  I realized that I constantly was quitting or getting axed at work because I didn't like the job, and no amount of money would change that.  It was time for a career move.  For decades, I told kids in school not to get a degree, but a usefull skill - something tat told employers that 'I can do this', and that would make you valuable.  Too many college grads don't realize this until it's too late.  The funny part is that I never took my own advice - I did the same thing over and over.  At last, I realized that going back into the car business was like reuniting with the ex you divorced five times, because you think she's changed.  The car business isn't going to change, so I needed to..


   I decided I too needed to stop being afraid of failing at something, and pick up a skilled trade that would be in demand.  One where I could learn it, get a job, and be valued as someone who was able to do things no one else out there could. To be valuable and needed, and to be able to have my bosses by the balls, instead of the other way.  In a few weeks, I'll be studying Industrial Electrician for the next six months.  When that's done, I'll find a job somewhere, where I'll be the go to guy at the plant. If something breaks , I fix it.  Value...


   As far as personally, just being out of the car biz seems to have put me in a better mood... I notice I laugh a bit more, especially at stuff that used to get me pissed.  I'm actually pretty attractive when I smile - or so I've been told.  Finding someone at almost 44 isn't easy, but there's someone out there.  One step at a time, right...


     Yeah, another May 18th has come, and on the surface it looks like we took a step back this year... But, what we see is that we took a big shovel, dug out all of the shit that was burying our long-term satisfaction, and are starting out on a solid, clean base.  For once, we have a plan...How will it all work out? Check back in next May 18th...


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All Eyes Are On Wall Street Today....

For $38 a Share, You Can Be Part Owner Of The Last Next Big Thing..


     After months of speculation, it's finally here.  Facebook is giving it's initial stock offering - and it keeps going up. It was first estimated to go at about $24 a share, but it's ended up at $38.  Keep in mind, for every $2 increase in share price, Mark Zuckerberg's net worth will rise approximately $1 Billion.  Over 414 million shares are up for grabs, so a lot of ordinary people are going to be millionaires overnight.  The big question is - should YOU be buying stock in Facebook.. Our money says probably not, unless you can get in and out fast.


    Here's our thought process... Companies that are private and eventually go public do so because they need capital.  That is, to expand in the marketplace, they need to be able to produce and market more.  For companies like GE, McDonalds and Apple, increasing market share means being able to expand the means of production - and that takes money.  Here is our question with Facebook's IPO: you already have 900 million subscribers in almost every country on Earth, nearly 1 in 6 worldwide.  Also, your service/product doesn't require much capital to expand... So, why do you need the big influx of cash?


     Nope, we have the feeling that Facebook is seeing the top of the curve coming, and they are getting ready to cash out a bit. Are we predicting that Facebook will soon be a thing of the past - a bubble?  Nope.  For many of us, it's become part of our everyday lives.  I wouldn't be able to have reunited or communicated with thousands of people that I do now.  Facebook is here to stay, but it's not for everyone, and where it used to double and triple it's members annually, it's down to 10-15% per year.  It's near it's peak... And when that happens, you cash out.


    Where the stock will go is anyone's guess.  The $38 per share price for a company that makes billions a year is actually cheap, so it will likely skyrocket quickly.  It's after the initial excitement, it's going to be like every other stock.  Also, there are going to be a lot of ordinary people at Facebook who are going to look at the price, figure out what their net worth suddenly is, and sell their shares off like madmen... Once the sellers equal the buyers, the price stops rising - and eventually, it drops.


    To give you an idea of how crazy the Facebook IPO is, here's a stat.  With the IPO, Facebook's net worth is now higher than General Motors and Ford.... COMBINED.   But there is nothing tangible to it, and unless they figure out how to branch out into more tangible things, the stock will drop.  Today's going to be very interesting.  We have experts predicting it will explode to $70 a share soon, other say it will not move at all.  We'll see....


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Thursday, May 17, 2012

And the Winner of the 7th District Poll Is... Undecided ?

FMU-SC Now Poll Tells Us We ALL Have a Lot of Work To Do ...


    When it comes to polls, there's a pretty good rule: the smaller the area you're working, the more likely it is to be wrong.  There have been plenty of internal polls from the campaigns, but today was the first independent poll of the 7th Congressional District GOP Primary on June 12th.  From what we see, we have a few questions, but there is one thing that we totally agree with - a ton of people haven't made up their minds.


   The poll conducted by Crantford and Associates for FMU and SC Now.com, showed that the candidates finished in the following order:

Andre Bauer           22%
Tom Rice                21%
Chad Prosser            8%
Jay Jordan                5%
Katherine Jenerette  4%
Dick Withington        2%
Randal Wallace         1%
Renee Culler             1%
Jim Mader                 1%


   Now, we know what you're probably doing right now.... You're adding up the numbers, and you're noticing that it only adds up to 65%.  So, where are the other 35%?   Just like in the South Carolina GOP Primary back in January, over one-third of those polled are undecided.  Why depends either of three different reasons: they're keeping their decision lose to the vest, they don't know all of the candidates yet, or they just flat out aren't thinking about it yet...


   We doubt the first reason plays much into it right now.  Why? Because the second is much more logical.  We can personally attest to it.  We've been involved in South Carolina politics for 8 years, and we didn't know seven of the nine candidates.  That's a lot of learning to do for anyone, but what if you're not a political junkie like us?  That leaves reason number three....


   Since most of you are very interested in politics like us, you're going to have a hard time believing this, but most people do not live or die with politics.  As little as I knew a couple months ago, that was light years ahead of 95% of the voters, particularly in the Pee Dee.  Some of these guys are total unknowns.  If you think having money doesn't matter to voters, think about this: who are the top three in polls?  OK, now who are the three guys who have TV ads running?  A small correlation there, is there? 


   Now, as far as the reliability of the poll besides that, we do have a question of two.  Crantford weighted the polls by area. Horry County got 54% of the respondents, and Georgetown had 15%, with Florence just barely ahead of it at 16%.  So, amongst the other 5 counties, they gave them 15% of the polling.  If you go by the delegate totals, which were based on the Presidential Primary totals, Horry was a bit over weighted, which is bad for Tom Rice. He only got 10% of the remaining vote, and 28% in Horry.  So, his 21% could be slightly overstated, while Andre Bauer's 22% could be a tad low.  Jay Jordan needs to make a move.  He's second to Bauer in Florence at 19%, but is nearly non-existent at the beach.  He's supposed to have raised money, so he better start spending some of it at the Beach.  Thus far, we haven't seen him on TV...


   The real stunner to us is the invisibility of Randal Wallace... Wallace has been reviewed well by party people, and has connections in both the Pee Dee and Grand Strand, but polled lower than Katherine Jenerette and Dick Withington??  Something doesn't seem kosher there, but it could be right.  In 2004, I had every GOP insider and party official locked up, but on Primary Day, I got 22%, and even only 29% in Florence County.  As much as it hurts, we 'party faithful' just don't have the influence that we think we do..


    And that is our challenge to you.  June 12th is getting closer and closer, and time is running out for you to get disenfranchised voters to do two things - to get them to care, and to get them to vote!  The first is the hard part.  Once they do that, they'll do the homework. Maybe they'll cram like Final Exams at the last minute, but it's better than nothing... We're likely to see another poll or two, and it wouldn't surprise us to see totally different results.  Til then, this is all we have to go by...


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Unintended Consequences: SuperPAC's Go Rogue, But the Candidates Are the Ones Who Pay..

Mitt Romney Runs - Not Walks Like an Egyptian - Away From a PAC's Plan to Try and Repeat the 2008 Tie-In Between Obama and Wright...


    One of our top read posts was our 'SuperPAC's Are Superbad' story from January... The Supreme Court case that allowed these groups that aren't supposed to have any ties to the campaigns opened a Pandora's Box of unintended consequences. Why? Today was a great example of it, when a Chicago-area PAC was preparing to buy approximately $10 million in ads to be aired around the Democratic Convention.  The aim of the ad buy was to basically rehash the Jeremiah Wright tie-in to Barack Obama, which likely would air Wright's famous 'God Damn America' speech... This is the same strategy that John McCain nixed during the 2008 campaign.  


     This is truly the most dangerous part of SuperPAC's - when they decide that the campaign isn't going about things the right way - aka, how they'd do it - and they go Rogue.  The sad truth about this problem is that even though there may be the group's name in teeny, tiny print at the bottom of the ads, the voting public thinks that the candidate put it out.  So, even though Mitt Romney didn't concieve, make or pay for the ad, he would be the one paying for it...


   Hell, he already is... When the NY Times article came out about TD Ameritrade head and Chicago Cubs owner Joe Ricketts (hmm, a Cubs fan who works on Wall Street - how could he NOT be against Obama?) entertaining plans on the ads, Obama hacks David Axelrod and Jim Messina went straight to work.  Even after Romney repudiated the PAC, Messina thought that a statement wasn't enough..


   The good news for Romney is that the story came out, and he quickly criticized it.  Hopefully, this will die, like many non-stories that aren't the fault of the campaigns.  However, it's another problem with SuperPAC's.... They're not allowed to co-ordinate or have any contact with the official campaigns.  Do they keep to that rule? We doubt it happens 100% of the time.  It being that way, a runaway SuperPAC could ultimately damage a campaign when it goes on it's own.  Will this one? It doesn't appear to, but somewhere, someone will pull off something that will hurt Romney at some point..


    How the Court ruled for this insanity is beyond us.  Big, unlimited money ruins what is a system that is already on the verge of being out of control.  By November, I guarantee we ALL will be begging for the end of SuperPAC's .  We're there now - some just take longer to get there..

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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Say A Little Prayer For Brad Richardson Today ....

 
Hopefully, There Won't Be Any Kryptonite In the Doctor's Instruments, As The King Of Johnsonville Undergoes the Knife Today....


      Just a quick note to wish Brad Richardson well during his surgery today.. Actually, it may be over already, but we haven't heard how he's doing, but it can't hurt, right?  The former Johnsonville councilman, 7th District Vice-Chairman candidate, and FCGOP Energizer Bunny has had a terrible month or so physically.  But, it appears that the doctors at Carolinas Hospital may have finally pegged his problem down, as they're removing his lymph nodes..


     It's pretty obvious now that when he was rolling around the convention in a wheelchair last month, he wasn't kidding... It takes a lot to keep Brad off his feet, or at a GOP event. We're just hoping this is the end of it all, and he'll be bothering Dean Fowler at the Treasurer's Office very soon...


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We Fix What Congress Can't: Step One - A Tax Plan

Like Handy Manny, We Bust Out the Tool Box, And Start Working On America's Home Improvement Projects....


     We've said before that one thing we admire about Paul Ryan is that he isn't afraid to put a plan out there.  Maybe they're not all the greatest plans, but the important thing is they are a starting point.  Without putting something out there, Congress doesn't have that starting point.  Taxation is something we have spent years working on, trying to figure an equitable, fair and most importantly, realistic plan.  I've listened to all the voices, and taken those things into consideration, which seems to be more than Congress has.  While there is no magic bullet, here are my opinions of taxes, and what I think is the best plan forward for America - it's businesses and ALL of it's citizens...


What Works and What Doesn't
     First, you always have to start off with what is currently being used.  If our current system were good, we wouldn't be trying to fix it , would we?  That is the primary problem - every year, we add more and more to the tax code. It's great for accountants and tax attorneys, but when a system gets to be over 1600 pages long, it's a mess.  Congress IS picking winners and loser with every change and addition.  Milllionaires paying less than me is rdiiculous - and that did happen this year..Meanwhile, close to half of all Americans pay NO taxes at all.  A system filled with inequities essentially squeezes the Middle Class, and is a mjor cause of why the economy hasn't picked up faster. Say what you want - but the truth is the econ omy picks up when more products are sold, not when a millionaire has more cash in the bank..


    I won't go too much into the FairTax again, because anyone who's ever read this blog knows that we are NOT proponents of it.  It's inequitable, and it's based on consumption, not on the true ability of a person to pay taxes - their income.  We've been listening to them for years, and it's still constantly under revision.  We've given up on the FairTax people trying to pound a square peg through a round hole, while making assinine proposals like 'Prebates'.  The FairTax was undoubtedly the brainchild of some millionaire who managed to bullshit people who weren't fully listening...


    Now, we had started out with the thought of a Flat Income Tax.  Of the three, it is the most fair, because everyone pays the same rate based on their income. On the surface, it sounds great, but the problem with a Flat Tax is the rate is virtually impossible to set.  Why? For example, lets say you put the rate at 14%, like Steve Forbes wanted when he ran in 1996... It's not terrible for middle or lower class, but it's a bonanza for the wealthy.  Taxing the rich at 14% will not sufficiently fund the government.  Put the rate higher, and the lower and middle class get slaughtered.  


   Deductions 
    Deductions are just like the rest of the tax code - they pick winners and losers.  The incorrect part is that few people do these certain actions in order for a deduction.  Why? Because it's not worth it.. Do we buy a house for the mortgage deduction, or a Prius for the credit, or send our kids to college to get a 15% credit on it? Absolutely not.  It's sad to say, but the only thing that people do for a tax deduction is donate to charity.  We're not up for bankrupting every good charity in America (although if we weren't taxed to death, we'd have more money to donate), so it'd be a good idea to leave a little room for them.  To us, there is only one good exemption - the single standard exemption.


So, that's all of our problems with the Tax Code... But, at SC6, we don't just bitch about everything - we try to fix them.  So, without further adieu, we give you the SC6 Tax Plan...


The Proposal:
    Four Tier Income Tax
      Rather than a Flat Tax, we're proposing four levels to accomodate the four levels of society: Lower Class, Middle Class, Upper Middle Class and Upper Class. Here are the four rates:

12% Rate up to $50,000 annually
17% Rate from  $50001-100000 annually
22% Rate from  $100001-250,000 annually.
30% Rate above $250,001

22% for Capital Gains Tax
0%   For Estate Taxes

     


     Deductions
       Standard deduction of $10,000 per filer, including capital gains.
       Charitable deductions allowed, capped at 5% of total income.


That's it.  What we were shooting for was setting a plan where everyone contributes even a little bit.  The exception to that would be the $10,000 exemption. Why? A couple reasons.. First, if you're pulling in less than $200 per week, you need every penny you can!  After that, you're paying something, but not a ton.  Another winner from the deductions is the two earner family.. By filing separately - because there is no incentive to file together - they earn two exemptions. So the college , mortgage , EITC and other bullshit is incorporated into it, without  making rules to pay favorites.

    The rates for all are lower, but with the loss of exemptions, it should counteract that.  The Upper Rate is dropped from 35% to 30%, which is higher than the lower level, but each group can drop it by 5 points with charitable donations...  Capital Gains are treated similarly to income, with exempting the first $10,000 for ordinary people cashing in 401k's and stock...


  The main focus of it is to make a Tax Plan that is simpler, fair and realistic, and we think we are very close.  I know the one complaint is I've heard from FairTax people is it makes illegal workers pay tax too.   True, but I'm not in favor of screwing 180 million taxpayers to catch 11 million in the net too.  It's like ObamaCare - lots of bad things happen when you try too hard to make the net catch everybody..


    Feed back would be nice, as with any proposal we make.  We are compromisers, and the worst that could happen is we get a good suggestion.  Our track record on things like this is pretty solid.  In 2004,we pitched tax credits for new hires, and soon after we passed it to him, Mark Sanford sent it to Columbia.  Barack Obama is now proposign a similar plan, so we must have been on the right track.  We think we're on another one here as well.  All over the place, I hear Democrats say they are not opposed at all to a Flat Income Tax.  If they like that, they should love this.  All it needs is the CBO to confirm f the rates are correct, or if it needs tweaking to be on target...


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