Friday, October 2, 2009

Support Our Military

The American public needs to remember that we have military troops all over the world providing service to our country. It is easy to forget this fact while we live in our own little worlds concentrating on our lives and the pursuit of our dreams. We may not agree with certain military operations, but we all need to remember the sacrifices made by these volunteer service members. If you are dissatisfied with certain military operations, you should voice those concerns to members of Congress. Maybe some day Congress will listen to the people. In the meantime, all Americans should remember our military troops and show support whenever and wherever possible. This can be simple things such as walking up to someone in uniform and expressing thanks to him or her for their service to our country.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Social Security & Medicare

Recent news articles indicate both of these programs are in very serious trouble. Social Security will pay out more than it takes in by 2016 and Medicare will be insolvent by 2017. Government has known this, but apparently nothing is being done to fix the situation. The President and Congress are doing nothing to protect the welfare of average citizens while dumping trillions of taxpayer’s dollars down the drain on bailouts without adequate knowledge that it will help the economy or adequate controls. Wake up America and demand action by your representatives! The time for action is now, not years from now. If your representative is not willing to take action, maybe they should be booted out of office. The same goes for the President. The members of Congress need to change their self-serving attitudes and represent the American public. This is just another example of government being overpaid with no worries about their own retirement while ignoring their constituents. What does it take for the public to demand action?

Friday, May 8, 2009


I read numerous articles related to veterans and their troubles in various areas. Recently there were two letters in a newspaper regarding two different aspects of the military. One was related to a man in uniform and his effort to assist a female by chasing her car down to return her wallet that was dropped in a store parking lot. The other was regarding problems related to the VA Medical Centers. One individual stated he had to sit in the emergency room for hours before even having his vitals taken, much less see a doctor. He stated that the excuse was they were understaffed and had only one nurse. He stated the personnel were rude, uncaring, and acted like they were only interested in finishing the shift and their paycheck. Emergency rooms are certainly a problem across the nation in all hospitals and there is a nurse shortage, but I have seen salary information for VA hospital staff and they are certainly well paid, if not overpaid. This is an area that should be reviewed by government and action taken to solve the problem. Change the rules and start firing people and replacing them with people that will get the job done. The public deserves better medical care and veterans certainly deserve excellent medical care.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Teachers Pay

A recent article about bonus money (in addition to salaries) being paid to school principals, assistant principals, and teachers is a disturbing aspect of the current public education system. Don’t get me wrong, I believe teachers should receive a reasonable salary for the important work they are or should be doing to prepare students for the world. This is related to my dissatisfaction with the Federal Teachers Incentive Fund and the process of providing a merit-pay system for the biggest gains in attendance and test scores. This involves amounts from $2,500 to $10,000 depending on position. I am sure there are plenty of excellent teachers that are doing excellent jobs, but what happened to doing the job you are hired to do at the salary provided for the position. If you are not performing or doing the job properly then you should be fired, as it should be in any business or industry. The public school system has many problems and this is evident by the number of students that manage to graduate without being able to speak properly or have a reasonable knowledge of math or history. The public school system has deteriorated over the years. The problem would appear to be related to teaching ability and I don’t feel using money in such a manner is the proper way to solve the problem. There is the additional problem related to a lot of parents not taking a strong enough interest in their children and school, but the answer to that problem is evasive. Teachers should not have to be enticed with bonus money in order to fulfill their responsibilities. They should be replaced with individuals interested in preparing students for the difficult world they are about to enter. Salaries that I have seen published for principals and assistant principals appear to be very reasonable amounts and it should be automatic to replace those individuals if their schools are not performing.

Saturday, February 21, 2009


The government is not capable of handling the stimulus package with the necessary controls in place to assure that the American taxpayer’s money is directed to the proper place and utilized properly. There is too much of an opportunity for massive fraud by government employees and vendors with billions or trillions of dollars at risk. Bailing out ignorance in business management and in personal decisions should not be done at the expense of taxpayers who have managed their affairs properly. There is also no real guarantee that the stimulus will actually work or that is was really necessary. The recovery would have eventually taken care of itself over time. Weak business models always fail at some point and the weak ones will fail during this process. Individuals will always make bad financial decisions and should not be bailed out at the expense of others.
Fraud and greed seem to be synonymous with American business and American government. This is evident as we move further into the economic situation or crisis currently facing the country. Greed is always involved in these type situations to some extent and played a large roll this time. Fraud has also raised its ugly head as individuals take advantage of the trusting public. We were informed to a certain extent about the specifics related to the financial meltdown on Wall Street, but you have to do your own research to obtain a better understanding of what actually occurred. Banks have stock prices not seen in many years, unemployment has reached levels not seen in years, and individuals along with businesses have difficulty obtaining loans. In my opinion, the loan problem may not be such a bad deal because people and businesses have been creating too much debt. A large percentage of individuals and businesses have been attempting to live beyond their means. The recovery will be slow. There is also a psychological factor involved that will have to be conquered by the public and business. We have witnessed the rollover effect throughout the financial services industry and into all segments of American society and throughout the world. Securities/investments, banking, real estate, auto manufacturing, dealerships, and all associated industries have been touched in this crisis. There is one area that I feel is waiting in the wings and will at some point make the news. That is the medical/healthcare/drug industry. I will not be surprised if massive fraud and corruption in this industry makes the front page of the news. There is still a great deal that will have to be accomplished by government to assure the public that their money is being spent wisely and not wasted. Future generations will certainly judge the wisdom of decisions being made by the so-called leaders in Washington.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Congress & Salary

The salaries of the members of Congress are out of line when you consider what they actually do and what they have accomplished as a governmental body. The current economic conditions facing the citizens and the country at this time also make it evident that they are overpaid. The history of their salary increases is something to behold. They are currently at a whopping $169,300 a year, with an increase already in progress that will give them a $174,000 annual amount. When you consider what they have actually accomplished, this is an outrageous figure. The fact that they give themselves raises is another outrageous matter. I am sure people surviving on only social security checks would agree with this analysis. Do we get our money’s worth? I don’t think so! Back in 1815 their salary was $6 a day, then in 1968 the amount was $30,000, 1979 has them at $60,000, 1991 shows $125,100, and now $169,300. I believe the time is now for members to decrease that salary and place it more in line with reality. The average individual income in America is around $45,000 to $50,000 (with millions below that level). Even if they doubled it to $90,000, that would provide a livable income and would not include their other sources of income. It is time to remove our politicians from the royalty view they have of themselves and place them back in a position of serving the public. Write your members of Congress and demand that they take action to correct this situation and do it now! In fact, a large percentage of city, county, state, and federal employees (especially appointed positions) have salaries that have reached out of line levels and need to be reduced, especially in today’s economic situation. Businesses are reducing salary levels and government should follow those steps and operate in a realistic business manner!

Recycle America

There is a growing need for more recycling in America and the world in general. It is a shame and a disgrace that more is not being done by the do-nothing Congress. There is so much waste in America and the landfills are growing by the tons every day with no end in sight. The waste of plastic and paper alone is staggering when this could be recycled and put to good use! This does not even consider the nightmare of hazardous waste that continues to be dumped daily. There is really nothing being done from a federal level to solve this nightmare of a problem that grows by the minute. Where are the so-called great minds in this country? There are some recycling operations taking place, but the number is so small that it is ridiculous. I am positive that the public in general would support a good program, but it takes a well thought out plan and for that plan to be placed in operation. The coming generations will be faced with massive problems if something is not done and soon. The government and public is too involved in the live for today and make as much money as possible syndrome that everyone forgets that the planet should at the very least be considered while conducting their lives in that manner. Wake up America and demand action!

Monday, January 5, 2009

American Judicial System

The American judicial system is broken and it is past time for a complete overhaul. There are too many criminals using a revolving door when it comes to punishment. This goes for criminals guilty of robbery or home burglary and criminals guilty of more serious crimes. Judges appear to be entirely too lax in their punishment. They commit crimes, go in for a short period of time and are back out doing the same crimes. White-collar criminals are receiving light prison terms and when there is a fine involved, the amount is small compared to the crimes they committed and the amount involved in their crime. The federal prison system appears to provide incarceration and not any real punishment. Rehabilitation would appear to be non-existent. I recently read about an inmate attending a professional basketball game and he was out of prison while serving an 18-month sentence that does not expire for 8 months. He was not out on parole since there is no parole in federal prison, but there is the next best thing, a furlough. Inmates who meet specific security standards are considered for furloughs of up to 30 days that typically occur during their final year of confinement. This is intended to help reestablish family and community ties. This is outrageous! They can adjust after they serve their time for the crimes they committed against society! What has America come to when criminals are treated in such a manner? Politicians are committing fraud against the public they are supposed to be serving and when found guilty of their crimes they receive very light sentences. The public deserves better and the judicial system deserves a makeover.