The Long Version

Retired broadcast journalist. Blogging helps scratch the itch. Recovering exRepublican – Sober and still Conservative.

Posts Tagged ‘Government

An Open Letter to the U.S. House of Representatives

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By Jeff Minick

Dear Members of the House of Representatives,

I hope this letter finds you in fine fettle.

This is a first for me. I’ve never written an open letter. Usually celebrities, politicians, and academics compose and deliver these missives, often brickbats of denunciation and self-defense, to be printed in the media. For an ordinary guy like me, writing an “open letter” seems a bit pretentious. It makes me want to slip into a silk bathrobe, pop an American Spirit Light into a long-stemmed holder, dandle a glass of Korbel Brut in the other hand, and stroll about a rose garden dictating my words to a secretary who looks like Juliette Binoche.

Instead, here I sit in a McDonald’s six hours from home, sipping coffee, listening to tunes on the sound system from the fifties and sixties, and glancing now and then at a table of five old-timers nibbling their Egg McMuffins and discussing aircraft and the Wright Brothers.

Well, enough about me. Let’s talk about you.

Since Donald Trump’s election to the presidency, a number of you, some Democrats, some Republicans, some socialists, some independents, have talked and talked about impeaching the president. I can certainly understand why. His election was a stunner, wasn’t it? I’ve heard some folks were so upset they actually entered therapy. Others are still so unhappy they light themselves on fire or stab themselves. (When my candidates lose, I just toss back an extra gin-and-tonic, hit the sack, and go to work in the morning. Different strokes for different folks.)

The Mueller Report, two years in the making, exonerated President Trump of any collusion with Russia. That our president didn’t conspire with Boris and Natasha to subvert the United States is surely cause to break out the champagne, yet it brought sackcloth and ashes in certain quarters.

Now some of you are demanding that Attorney General William Barr break the law by giving you an unredacted copy of the report. Others accuse President Trump of mental illness. (The Soviets notoriously used this tactic as a way to put dissidents behind bars.) Some of you call for impeachment for no reason other than to appease your more rabid constituents.

You’ve stuck to this subject like a tick on a dog, but polls reveal most Americans are tired of the circus. You seem to forget that many of them voted for Trump and will be more than a little unhappy if you impeach him. Others, even many who didn’t vote for him, believe you are engaged in a vendetta, not a quest for justice.

Anyway, I have a suggestion for you.

Why not try solving some of our nation’s problems?

Let’s look at just two issues.

Our nation is 22 trillion dollars in debt. (I can’t even imagine how a million dollars stacks up, much less a trillion.) The Washington Post reports we are on track to a trillion dollar deficit in the 2020 budget alone. I have four children and a platoon of grandchildren, and don’t really like to imagine them living as paupers because our Congress lacked the guts to look a few years into the future and slash the budget.

And yet you seem to have your personal finances in order. Your current annual salary is $174,000. (The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the salary of the average American is about $45,000.) You are, as I write, considering giving yourselves a raise. (How many employees anywhere get to vote to give themselves a raise? And yes, ladies and gentlemen, you are employees, something you tend to forget.) In fact, some of you leave Congress as millionaires. How about performing this same magic on the federal deficit?

You see, what’s frustrating to those of us outside the Beltway is that so many of you seem irresponsible with everyone else’s money other than your own.

Then there’s illegal immigration. The New York Times, CNN, and other media have recently acknowledged a crisis on our southern border. The place is falling apart. Hundreds of thousands of people are entering our country, some slipping across the border, others being caught and then released inside the United States. Most recently, we have reports that hundreds of illegal immigrants from the Ebola-stricken Congo – the Congo, for heaven’s sake! – were caught wading across the Rio Grande.

Were they turned back? Nope. They were dumped in the streets of San Antonio.

So what are you doing about this invasion? Any plans?

In the last twenty years or so, Congress has had a hand in our failing education system, a health care program that baffles many and brings ever greater costs, a military second to none but with boatloads of wasted dollars, and a government with lots of “non-essential” jobs.

Were you not elected to represent your constituents and to defend American interests?

How about giving it a shot? How about doing your job?

As for impeachment, which will likely backfire big-time if you go through with it, let me conclude with the words of the young woman pressed to get an abortion by her companion in Ernest Hemingway’s short story “Hills Like White Elephants”:

“Would you please please please please please please please stop talking?”

Encouraging you to do so, and to do your duty to the rest of us,

Jeff Minick

[Image Credit: Architect of the Capitol, Public Domain]

This post An Open Letter to the U.S. House of Representatives was originally published on Intellectual Takeout by Jeff Minick. Reposted by permission.

https://www.intellectualtakeout.org/sites/all/themes/ito/js/ito-repub.js

Sensibility and Nonsense

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Sensibility says the overthrow of the government in Egypt was a military coup – Nonsense says it was democracy at work.

Sensibility says the attack at Fort Hood was perpetrated by a terrorist – Nonsense says it was workplace violence.

Sensibility says the attack on the consulate in Benghazi was a terrorist attack – Nonsense says it was random violence sparked by a video.

Sensibility says terminating a pregnancy after the 20th week is too late – Nonsense says it’s never to late.

Sensibility says a government collecting mass amounts of data on its citizens including personal communications without cause can’t be trusted – Nonsense says it’s no big deal because I’m not doing anything wrong.

Sensibility says the IRS singling out individuals and groups based on religious, political, or ideological views for scrutiny and ill-favored treatment is abuse of power – Nonsense says it’s a conspiracy theory.

Sensibility says the rash of scandals in recent months coming out of this administration is a symptom of a much bigger problem – Nonsense says it’s all phony.

I don’t know about you but all this nonsense is offending my sensibilities.

Understanding Liberty, Freedom, and Government’s Place

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Becky Gerritson of the Wetumpka Tea Party testified before the House Ways and Means committee regarding her group’s treatment by the IRS with an emotional plea to her government to rein in its overreach and at times tearfully explaining the experience she and her husband had personally with IRS representatives.

Mrs. Gerritson eloquently and forcefully expresses her concern of what is being lost in this country and how our elected representatives are chipping away at the liberties the constitution was created to provide and protect.

If her response does not stir something inside the people of this nation, they have lost their understanding of why this country was founded, the principles upon which it was founded, and the uniqueness of this great experiment.

When Will the Sh*t Hit the Fan?

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There is a division in America and it appears to be broken down along the following  lines.  See if you can follow along.

Free Sh*tPoor* folks getting free sh*t and rich* folks paying for it.

The poor* folks who are getting free sh*t, don’t seem to care much for the rich* folks who are paying for the free sh*t these days perhaps because the rich* folks who are paying for the free sh*t are saying they can no longer afford to pay for both the free sh*t and their own sh*t.

Furthermore, The folks who are paying for all the free sh*t want the free sh*t to stop and the folks who are getting the free sh*t want even MORE free sh*t on top of the free sh*t they’re already getting!

Now, the people who are forcing the (rich) people to PAY for the free sh*t have told the (poor) people who are RECEIVING the free sh*t that the people who are PAYING for the free sh*t are being mean, prejudiced, and racist for saying they can’t continuing paying for free sh*t for everyone else.

So… the people who are GETTING the free sh*t have now been convinced they should HATE the people who are PAYING for the free sh*t, BY the very people who are forcing the (rich) people to pay for the free sh*t and GIVING the free sh*t lovin people the free sh*t in the first place!

If you can’t follow that, you’re not paying attention to sh*t.

*The use of the terms rich and poor in this monologue are extremely subjective and in today’s political environment may best be described as:
Poor – A household with 2 big screen TV’s, 1 XBox, 1 car, and no employed inhabitants.
Rich – A household with 2 big screen TV’s, 1 XBox, 1 car, and 1 employed inhabitant.

Written by DCL

February 7, 2013 at 1:34 pm

Business Owners Share Concern for Economy With Employees, Seen as Threats by the Left.

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Recently some business owners have shared their concerns with the economy and its effect on their business with employees.  Included in those company-wide emails are their concerns and personal opinions about President Obama’s chances for a second term and what, in their opinion, that could mean for their companies and their ability to operate at current levels.

Some on the left have pounced on these emails as evidence of a heartless group of business people in corporate America who could care less about the people who work for them and only focus on how many dollars they can stuff in their own pockets.

I’ve posted two emails that have been made public of two business owners who sent them to their employees.

I encourage you to read them entirely before making any judgement.  I believe you will see concern not only for their companies but also for their employees, especially those who have worked for them for many years.  The spin coming out from the left on these letters is at best dishonest and worst malicious.

You read. You decide.

David Segal owner Westgate Resorts

Subject: Message from David Siegel
Date:Mon, 08 Oct 2012 13:58:05 -0400 (EDT)
From: [David Siegel]
To: [All employees]

To All My Valued Employees,

As most of you know our company, Westgate Resorts, has continued to succeed in spite of a very dismal economy. There is no question that the economy has changed for the worse and we have not seen any improvement over the past four years. In spite of all of the challenges we have faced, the good news is this: The economy doesn’t currently pose a threat to your job. What does threaten your job however, is another 4 years of the same Presidential administration. Of course, as your employer, I can’t tell you whom to vote for, and I certainly wouldn’t interfere with your right to vote for whomever you choose. In fact, I encourage you to vote for whomever you think will serve your interests the best.

However, let me share a few facts that might help you decide what is in your best interest.The current administration and members of the press have perpetuated an environment that casts employers against employees. They want you to believe that we live in a class system where the rich get richer, the poor get poorer. They label us the “1%” and imply that we are somehow immune to the challenges that face our country. This could not be further from the truth. Sure, you may have heard about the big home that I’m building. I’m sure many people think that I live a privileged life. However, what you don’t see or hear is the true story behind any success that I have achieved.

I started this company over 42 years ago. At that time, I lived in a very modest home. I converted my garage into an office so I could put forth 100% effort into building a company, which by the way, would eventually employ you. We didn’t eat in fancy restaurants or take expensive vacations because every dollar I made went back into this company. I drove an old used car, and often times, I stayed home on weekends, while my friends went out drinking and partying. In fact, I was married to my business — hard work, discipline, and sacrifice. Meanwhile, many of my friends got regular jobs. They worked 40 hours a week and made a nice income, and they spent every dime they earned. They drove flashy cars and lived in expensive homes and wore fancy designer clothes. My friends refinanced their mortgages and lived a life of luxury. I, however, did not. I put my time, my money, and my life into this business —-with a vision that eventually, some day, I too, will be able to afford to buy whatever I wanted. Even to this day, every dime I earn goes back into this company. Over the past four years I have had to stop building my dream house, cut back on all of my expenses, and take my kids out of private schools simply to keep this company strong and to keep you employed.

Just think about this – most of you arrive at work in the morning and leave that afternoon and the rest of your time is yours to do as you please. But not me- there is no “off” button for me. When you leave the office, you are done and you have a weekend all to yourself. I unfortunately do not have that freedom. I eat, live, and breathe this company every minute of the day, every day of the week. There is no rest. There is no weekend. There is no happy hour. I know many of you work hard and do a great job, but I’m the one who has to sign every check, pay every expense, and make sure that this company continues to succeed. Unfortunately, what most people see is the nice house and the lavish lifestyle. What the press certainly does not want you to see, is the true story of the hard work and sacrifices I’ve made.

Now, the economy is falling apart and people like me who made all the right decisions and invested in themselves are being forced to bail out all the people who didn’t. The people that overspent their paychecks suddenly feel entitled to the same luxuries that I earned and sacrificed 42 years of my life for. Yes, business ownership has its benefits, but the price I’ve paid is steep and not without wounds. Unfortunately, the costs of running a business have gotten out of control, and let me tell you why: We are being taxed to death and the government thinks we don’t pay enough. We pay state taxes, federal taxes, property taxes, sales and use taxes, payroll taxes, workers compensation taxes and unemployment taxes. I even have to hire an entire department to manage all these taxes. The question I have is this: Who is really stimulating the economy? Is it the Government that wants to take money from those who have earned it and give it to those who have not, or is it people like me who built a company out of his garage and directly employs over 7000 people and hosts over 3 million people per year with a great vacation?

Obviously, our present government believes that taking my money is the right economic stimulus for this country. The fact is, if I deducted 50% of your paycheck you’d quit and you wouldn’t work here. I mean, why should you? Who wants to get rewarded only 50% of their hard work? Well, that’s what happens to me.

Here is what most people don’t understand and the press and our Government has chosen to ignore – to stimulate the economy you need to stimulate what runs the economy. Instead of raising my taxes and depositing that money into the Washington black-hole, let me spend it on growing the company, hire more employees, and generate substantial economic growth. My employees will enjoy the wealth of that tax cut in the form of promotions and better salaries. But that is not what our current Government wants you to believe. They want you to believe that it somehow makes sense to take more from those who create wealth and give it to those who do not, and somehow our economy will improve. They don’t want you to know that the “1%”, as they like to label us, pay more than 31% of all the taxes in this country. Thomas Jefferson, the author of our great Constitution, once said, “democracy” will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.”

Business is at the heart of America and always has been. To restart it, you must stimulate business, not kill it. However, the power brokers in Washington believe redistributing wealth is the essential driver of the American economic engine. Nothing could be further from the truth and this is the type of change they want.

So where am I going with all this? It’s quite simple. If any new taxes are levied on me, or my company, as our current President plans, I will have no choice but to reduce the size of this company. Rather than grow this company I will be forced to cut back. This means fewer jobs, less benefits and certainly less opportunity for everyone.

So, when you make your decision to vote, ask yourself, which candidate understands the economics of business ownership and who doesn’t? Whose policies will endanger your job? Answer those questions and you should know who might be the one capable of protecting and saving your job. While the media wants to tell you to believe the “1 percenters” are bad, I’m telling you they are not. They create most of the jobs. If you lose your job, it won’t be at the hands of the “1%”; it will be at the hands of a political hurricane that swept through this country.

You see, I can no longer support a system that penalizes the productive and gives to the unproductive. My motivation to work and to provide jobs will be destroyed, and with it, so will your opportunities. If that happens, you can find me in the Caribbean sitting on the beach, under a palm tree, retired, and with no employees to worry about.

Signed, your boss,

David Siegel

E-mail from Arthur Allen to ASG Software employees

Subject: Will the US Presidential election directly impact your future jobs at ASG?  Please read below.

To all ASG employees,

We have been stuck in an extremely sick global economy, but as we should all know by now, the global economy largely depends on the US economy. This sick global economy has been negatively influencing ASG since December 2008. No one could have ever have dreamed that the US economy would still be sick 4 years later, but it is. We have a chance, as individuals, to help turn the sick US economy into a healthy economy, and positively influence the global economy as well. This chance comes on November 6th, when we elect a new President and administration. The US and the world need to elect individuals who have business experience. Neither the world nor the US can stand to elect politicians any longer. In my view, and in the view of most business leaders, if you give politicians 100 questions, they will give you back 100 wrong answers simply because they have no basis for making those decisions. Would you hire a person with no experience to do brain surgery? Of course not, but that’s what the US voters did in 2009. Why does the world keep hiring politicians to run our global economies when they have no experience? It just makes no sense, and yet the world keeps doing it over and over again. Let’s take the lead on November 6th and show the world how it should and can be done.

Many of you have been with ASG for over 5, 10, 15, and even 20 years. As you know, together, we have been able to keep ASG an independent company while still growing our revenues and customers. But I can tell you, if the US re-elects President Obama, our chances of staying independent are slim to none. I am already heavily involved in considering options that make our independence go away, and with that all of our lives would change forever. I believe that a new President and administration would give US citizens and the world the renewed confidence and optimism we all need to get the global economies started again, and give ASG a chance to stay independent. If we fail as a nation to make the right choice on November 6th, and we lose our independence as a company, I don’t want to hear any complaints regarding the fallout that will most likely come. Remember, in the world of business, companies are consolidators or they get consolidated; so far ASG has been a consolidator, completing over 60 acquisitions in our 26 year history. When we buy a company, we eliminate about 60 percent of the salaries of the employees of that company. If we lose our independence and get consolidated, the same thing would happen to ASG’s employees.

I am asking you to give us one more chance to stay independent by voting in a new President and administration on November 6th. Even then, we still might not be able to remain independent, but it will at least give us a chance. If we don’t, that chance goes away.

I apologize for writing such a blunt email, but for those of you who have known me for years and years, you know that this must be serious, and it is. I am going to follow this email with an email to All Sales, offering all of our help to assist them in making Q4 the best quarter in ASG history. Business is hard to find, but it is out there if Sales just goes and gets it.

Mr. Allen

Written by DCL

October 15, 2012 at 2:41 pm

Who Needs a Birth Certificate?

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Illinois Senator Dick Durbin seems to have a small problem understanding the most basic requirements for becoming President of the United States. Mr. Durbin completely overlooks the part about candidates needing to be BORN IN THE USA!

Yes Senator they can become our doctors, our teachers, our nurses, our engineers, our scientists, and our soldiers, but they cannot become our Presidents…not until your party abolishes the US Constitution anyway….