16 December 2010

Estate Taxes! Estate Taxes!!

Are you kidding me!!!

Paraphrasing Coach Jim Mora about his team’s chances for the playoffs

After years of struggle we finally got the Estate Tax to zero for 2010, where it should have always been, and the fools in Congress put it back in place as a condition to keep them from raising our Income Tax rates.

Anyone who falls for this kind of extortion is an idiot. If they were caught doing this on the street they would arrested. If you don’t give me money (Estate Taxes) I’ll break your legs (increase income tax rates). How unbelievably pathetic! At least street thugs try it while you’re alive. These grave robbing cowards wait until we’re dead.

There is no way to rationally justify stealing from the dead and their grieving heirs.

Whatever people have managed to accumulate after the massively oppressive Federal, state and local taxes, permits and fees have been paid for decades, and the government waits like a flock of vultures to rob them in their grave; it is hideous. If you did it, you would be scorned by all of humanity.

Citizens who followed most all the overly complicated, oppressive tax laws, worked hard, saved and invested wisely managing to accumulate a little something to pass on to children and grandchildren, and now, the government snatches a huge chuck of it while you and your heirs are the least able to prevent them, it’s shameful.

You’ve already paid income tax, sales tax, excise tax, and years of property taxes and in spite of their oppression you managed to succeed at growing a little nest egg, now by some twisted perverted logic the government thinks its entitled to another big chunk of what’s yours, having done nothing but try to prevent you and your family from becoming self-reliant at every turn. At 35% Estate Tax, in less than three generations it will have confiscated everything you and your family ever owned.

The government already robbed our children and our grandchildren before they were born by massively excessive over spending. They robbed us while we were alive for projects and programs the majority of us never asked for and didn’t want. And it apparently wasn’t enough, once again they’ve come back to rob us and our families from our graves.

It’s sickening, and should not be allowed happen in the land of the free.

13 December 2010

Non-Discretionary Spending

Baloney

There’s no such thing as non-discretionary spending, all spending is a discretionary act.

Congresses, Presidents, and the courts have made these laws, they can change them.

I want all entitlements cut starting March 2011. I want tax revenue for these programs cut, the outlays actually cut, until they match contributions and revenues.

One percent (1%) per year for the next 10 years would be a good start.

I mean all entitlements; Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, unemployment, Veterans benefits, food stamp allotments, school meals, all the various welfare payments, except for the disabled, orphans and widows and medical aid directly to children, disabled and not, under 18 years of age.

I mean all pensions and benefits paid to any kind of former government employee; elected, appointed or volunteer.

If it gets Federal tax money, I want it cut.

All non-contributing recipients that are receiving very lavish payments, except for children, widows and the truly unable.

All contributing benefit recipients are not contributing enough for their benefit.

Lavish entitlement and benefit payments, even those co-contributed to by the eventual recipient, have long been extremely excessive.

Politicians are clearly weak and unable to say no to the ridicules demands of their contributors and constituents.

If benefit recipients want more, they should have the option to contribute more. I doubt many will. Most will choose to save more or buy annuities or invest from their own discretionary income. If not, they get the same absolute minimum benefit as everyone else.

Just offer them less or nothing. It will motivate them to take care of themselves or endure the consequences. Our excessive aid actually harms the character and self-esteem of those we intend to help.

Helping the unable is the work of churches, non-profit organization, and well-meaning philanthropic contributors. That’s why they are tax-exempt. Our citizens willing contributions to deserving causes is exemplary, legendary and unique in the whole world.

Taxpayers should not be compelled by confiscatory taxes to attempt to eliminate the suffering of the ignorant.

The Wealthy

Should not be compelled to pay more income tax as a percentage than anyone else

They can and should contribute more and they can. They can make any contribution to the US Treasury anytime they want. Nothing is preventing them from donating whatever they feel is their just and honorable additional contribution. Nothing should prevent them. I would suggest they willingly contribute an additional 200 percent, but not be compel to contribute anything above the percentage EQUAL to all other individuals.

Progressive income tax rates should be eliminated. They are unjust. All individual income must be taxed at the same rate. No individual’s income should be treated differently under tax law. Every citizen should be treated equally by all laws of the United States.

If an individual earns income benefiting from this countries opportunity and wealth, but only some are obligated to pay income tax; but even the lowest income earners should pay something for the privilege of working in this great country.

Those who earn more will pay much more in dollars at equal rates, if income is properly and justly defined.

Every citizen should pay the same tax rate on their income, regardless of their wealth.  A simple, clear, easily understood, equitable definition of income, without any adjustments, is necessary for tax equity and justice.  A ten percent income tax on a billion dollars is $100 million per year.  A 10% tax on $20,000 income would be $2 thousand, and on a $1,000 income it should be $100, just like everyone else, so the burden of the cost of government is shared equally by all.

Exemptions, credits, subsidies, transfer payments, deductions, should be eliminated. Tax free giving, having children, buying a home, and all other deductions should be eliminated.

Any governments tax department should have only purpose; that should be revenue collection.

Transfer payments should be the exclusive activity of Health and Human Services, not the Internal Revenue Service. IRS should be exclusively focused on fair, equal and just revenue collection.

Equal taxation for all

08 December 2010

IDC

I Don’t Care:

What your religion is or where you’re from.  How old you are, if you are rich or poor, or don’t have health insurance.

If you’re here legally, I don’t care what your ethnicity is. I don’t care what your parents or your grandparents or other ancestors did or didn’t do, or had done to them, or didn’t have done for them.

I care if you’re disabled or stupid. I don’t care if you’re just ignorant.

I don’t care if you smoke, overeat, or do drugs; as long as I’m not paying for them or health care for you.

I don’t care if your children are hungry. Feeding them is your job. I don’t care if you are hungry, that’s also your job. Unless you are disabled, which may mean I’ll choose with others to provide you some minor conditional aid.

I don’t care who or what you have sex with, with consent.

I don’t care if you abuse yourself, just don’t abuse me or others, and don’t ask for my help.

Don’t think I’m willing to pay for anything for you. I don’t owe you anything. I don’t want anything for you or from you, and I don’t expect anything of you.

Your misery or success isn’t any of my business. If I don’t know you, I probably don’t want to. If I don’t notice you, it’s not disrespect, I just don’t care to.

I don’t care who you are or what you are about, my life is complicated and dramatic enough. If you think you’re smart you’re probably one of the 94 % who thinks they are smarter than average, but 47% of you aren’t.

If you are incompetent, I realize you can’t know it.

I don’t care what you believe, just tell me what you know; it will take much less time and I’ll assume you will believe nearly anything else.

You see, I truly don’t care who you think you are, what your problem is, why you are here, or if you think you are owed something. I earned what I have and I don’t owe you anything and I’m not interested in buying anything for you; not Social Security, not Medicare, not food, not housing, not health care, not dignity, not respect, not education, not honor, not even pity.

You have to earn them all yourself.

I care about my citizen rights and yours’ as written in the Constitution and Bill of Rights, and as decided by the Supreme Court, and the size and power of governments; not much else.

I'm for individual responsibility.

31 October 2010

Political Parties,

Stop Saying “Back”

There are a few nasty four letter words that should never be used in any way in a political campaign, “Back” is one of them. Whether it’s “Take Back America” or “taking us back to the bad old days” of the previous administration, no one wanting to vote wisely wants to go back to anything. We all want to go to something better.

Even if “Back” didn’t have mostly negative connotations, wiser political operatives should talk about what they want to lead the electorate to. Toward something is completely different than back. No one wants to revisit any mistakes from our pasts.

Instead of saying, “We want to go back to the founding principles that made America great” the pitch should be “We want to lead America to a principled, responsible future.” The idea should be “to” something honest, appropriate, new and better; not back to anything. Never use the word “back.”

The current administration would be wise to not refer to the past, especially with people still alive that remember their failed Socialist Progressive past. When they say the previous administration they mean a very recent one, but it could also mean revisiting their tired old failed policies from 75 years ago being attempted again virtually unchanged.

Do us all a favor, talk about to where you want to lead this great nation and how to get there. Don’t even mention “going back” or “taking back” anything.

I want to hear your vision of the future and the plan of how together we will get to a more effective, less intrusive, less complex, smaller and more responsive, less expensive, constitutionally compliant Federal government.

I want all programs and entitlements cut.

I want the Federal government doing only the smallest possible number of most necessary and important functions allowed it by the constitution. If you are a candidate, just tell me how you’re going to get that done. Don’t tell me anything about what the other guy has done or might do. If you even mention the word “back” regarding you or your opponent, I won’t be voting for you.

If you have no vision of equal opportunity, not equal outcomes; and equal justice, swift, ethnicity-blind and sure for any offenders; you’re not a leader.

I want smarter, better, smaller Federal government.

04 October 2010

More Failed Flood Control

How Could This Be?

After more than a hundred years of storm water and flood control projects funded by Federal taxpayers of all the States, even the ones who don’t have annual flooding, and the poor beleaguered taxpayers of the bankrupt and improvised states of the eastern seaboard, are under water once again from late season Atlantic storms that made it ashore.

It doesn’t matter why the expensive and so called “professionally designed, modern” storm water systems never seem to work. It could be poor design, poor construction, lack of maintenance, or improper trash disposal, all of which are probably true.

This year it’s being blamed on tree leaves and a late tropical storm. I shouldn’t dignify that ignorance with any further comment, but I must. Leaves have fallen from trees before winter each year since I’ve been alive. I’m informed from historical records and science they probably have since deciduous trees evolved several hundred million years ago.

Late summer storms have come ashore from the Atlantic ever since I can recall. Every time with disastrous results for the poor, ignorant, and incompetent people of the northeast at unfair expense to the rest of us, while the charlatans and buffoons of the Army Corps of Engineers, various Flood Control Agencies, unprofessional Engineering companies, and corrupt and incompetent cities and states continue to order and pay billions of dollars on fraudulent projects and have for many decades.

It’s not fair to the rest of this country’s taxpayers to continue to bail out these idiots.

You get more of what you pay for and less of what you tax.

Stop buying projects that don’t control flooding.

Stop declaring disasters for regular occurring natural events.

Stop subsidizing flood insurance for areas that flood nearly every time there’s a storm.

Stop tolerating and rewarding corruption and incompetence.

Stop penalizing taxpayers from other regions who routinely solve their own flooding problems without help from the unaffected.

I oppose the casual levying of taxes, but maybe they should tax rain. I know it sounds silly, but if you tax the land and people enough to pay for proper flood controls where flooding is a problem, maybe those who live and work there will leave and use the area for something consistent with annual flooding, like growing food, conserving wildlife, or purifying water.

27 September 2010

No New Taxes,

Like the Value Added Tax

Don’t get me wrong, I like the idea of a consumption tax. I just don’t like the current European like version of it. I like the idea of, if you don’t buy anything you don’t pay anything. I don’t think it’s noticeably regressive on poor people. If they are truly poor, they’re not buying hardly anything and that’s how it should be. This tax should have no product or personal circumstance exceptions, in fact, no exceptions of any kind.

If you grow something, trade something for anything, or make something from raw materials you own; you pay nothing.

I want taxes simplified and reduced, or eliminated. I’m not interested in a better tax idea, like the so called Flat Tax, until Federal spending has been substantially cut and the current tax burden simplified and reduced for all current taxpayers and changes that require all working people to pay some income tax. Currently more than half of working people pay no income taxes.

Term limits is another idea I’m not interested in; what a ridiculous idea. I’m not interested in any more restrictions to my right to vote for the candidates of my choice.  I don't like the current crop of morons we've elected, but if we get someone good, I'd like to be able to vote for them as long as they are useful.

I am against the further erosion or confiscation of any of my constitutional rights, especially my right to have and use arms and ammunition, free speech, free association, and protection from state imposed religion, property ownership, due process, protection from unreasonable search and seizure, a speedy, impartial, public trial prohibiting double jeopardy, and the rest of the Bill of Rights, Constitutional Amendments, and the rest of my individual rights not enumerated.

If the corrupt, mealy-mouthed, backstabbing cowards that have been elected could be trusted to establish a “fair tax” then I would support a better, simpler taxation scheme.

I doubt I will live that long.

Cut Federal Government,

Too Large, Too Intrusive

I want the Federal government, discretionary and non-discretionary spending to be 30 to 40% less than fiscal year 2008.

I would ask incumbents one simple two part question. What have done during your political career to cut federal government spending?

I would ask incumbents and new candidates the second part; what will you do during your brief time in office to cut the cost of Federal government?

Not trim, not slow the rate of growth, but reduce the total cost of Federal government year to year until it’s 35% less, adjusted for inflation, than in FY 2008.

Their meaningful answer would need to be short and uncomplicated, not the typical obscure, complex, convoluted, caveat and nuanced filled politically correct answer.

Non-answers and meaningless answers will definitely not get my vote. Poorly contrived non-specific yes answers will not get my vote.

Yes answers that include specific programs and monetary reduction targets with a strategy for success and a plan that starts the day they arrive in DC will definitely get my vote and the votes of millions of hard working money making tax payers.

They will definitely get my vote if they list ineffective programs, offices, agencies, commissions, and departments they would eliminate. It would show me they have actually thought about it seriously.  And if they have a plan, objectives, and measurable targets to restructure and reduce entitlement benefits (i.e. Social Security, Medicare, Welfare, etc.) until they can be afforded on substantially reduced Federal revenues.

That would be a candidate I could enthusiastically support.

16 September 2010

Unemployed,

How many are there, really?

My estimates before any research are, 104 million people are working, 216 million are not, counting mothers, children, retired people, students, prisoners, and entitlement recipients; seems like more like 67% unemployment. I know that’s not how the government reports unemployment. We’ll examine that below.

How many of the 67% are employable and how many are unemployable? How to count mothers that chose to raise children? How are the incompetent, severely handicapped, and mentally ill counted? How do we count the deliberately ignorant, and handicapped workers, and the partially employable? How the under-employed are counted? And how to count mothers that choose to work; or single parents, biological or non-biological? How are foreigners, legally here and not, counted?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics says at http://www.bls.gov/cps/cps_htgm.htm

Who is not in the labor force?

Labor force measures are based on the civilian non-institutional population 16 years old and over. Excluded are persons under 16 years of age, all persons confined to institutions such as nursing homes and prisons, and persons on active duty in the Armed Forces. As mentioned previously, the labor force is made up of the employed and the unemployed. The remainder—those who have no job and are not looking for one—are counted as "not in the labor force." Many who are not in the labor force are going to school or are retired. Family responsibilities keep others out of the labor force.

Who is counted as employed?

Not all of the wide range of job situations in the American economy fit neatly into a given category. For example, people are considered employed if they did any work at all for pay or profit during the survey week. This includes all part-time and temporary work, as well as regular full-time, year-round employment. Persons also are counted as employed if they have a job at which they did not work during the survey week, whether they were paid or not, because they were:

On vacation, Ill, Experiencing child-care problems, Taking care of some other family or personal obligation, On maternity or paternity leave, Involved in an industrial dispute, Prevented from working by bad weather

Who is counted as unemployed?

Persons are classified as unemployed if they do not have a job, have actively looked for work in the prior 4 weeks, and are currently available for work. Actively looking for work may consist of any of the following activities:

Contacting: An employer directly or having a job interview, A public or private employment agency, Friends or relatives, A school or university employment center, Sending out resumes or filling out applications, Placing or answering advertisements, Checking union or professional registers, Some other means of active job search

Are undocumented immigrants counted in the surveys?

Neither the establishment nor household survey is designed to identify the legal status of workers. Thus, while it is likely that both surveys include at least some undocumented immigrants, it is not possible to determine how many are counted in either survey. The household survey does include questions about whether respondents were born outside the United States. Data from these questions show that foreign-born workers accounted for about 15 percent of the labor force in 2006 and about 47 percent of the net increase in the labor force from 2000 to 2006.

Here’s what I think:

1. If you are unable to work, for whatever sensible reasons, you are not counted.

Some prisoners do work and are compensated and should be counted. Military personnel are working and compensated and should be counted. Some students are partially compensated for being a student and should be counted. If you are an uncompensated student and not working, you are unemployed.

2. If you are able to work and are not, you are unemployed. If you are unwilling to work you should be counted as unemployed.

3. If you are working, or excused from work for some sensible reason, but still considered an employee, you are employed. If you are compensated or earning future or deferred compensation of any kind, you are employed.

4. Child care is work. Unpaid family care, child or elderly, is work. Unpaid care workers should be counted as employed.

5. Those working for free now for some future consideration should be counted as employed, like Congressional aids, interns, volunteers, apprentices, etc.

6. Some number of people are employed in illegal activities (prostitutes, drug dealers, extortionists, gambling, etc.) and some work “under the table” for unreported cash, and some are in “swap-meet” and “tailgate” commerce, and some trade goods and services instead of money. These people are currently counted as unemployed, about 10 million people.  They should be counted as employed.

My estimates now are:

Not available to work: 170 million

Employed: 154 million

Unemployed: 20 million (13.9%)

It totals 344 million, more than the official population because:

Foreign nationals and illegal immigrates aren’t part of the official population estimate.

And, entitlement recipients working illegally and those in criminal and black market enterprises are supposedly not available to work but are and are double counted.

So what?

124 million people are employed. 24 million are legal and illegal foreigners, and black market cash workers.

200 million people are not working, or taking entitlements and working secretly.

30 million non-working foreigners are living here, many illegally, many receiving the entitlements and benefits of citizenship, which they have not earned.

Non-citizens, not here legally, must be returned to their native countries, then apply for acceptance into the United States. If accepted they must obey our laws and work to become citizens. If not, they and their offspring must be returned to their native homeland, no matter what a repressive, corrupt, disease infested, ignorant, crime laden, poverty ridden sewer it is.

31 August 2010

Ignorance;

World’s Most Dangerous Weapon.

Poverty, diseases, corruption, crime, injustice, maladies and most human miseries originate in ignorance. Accessible knowledge and inspired life-long learning are the solutions.

It is part of human nature for some to take advantage of the weak and ignorant. Those with ill gotten and unearned gains fear competition from those who know more, are more capable and more powerful than they, and understand things they do not.

Human perception is severely limited by ignorance. Humans see, hear and understand very little and imagine even less. Without knowledge, access to information, and the skill to evaluate it, and a thirst for it, people cannot hope to imagine the future based upon current causes, or imagine how the future might be different based upon new choices

Many are incompetent due to mental deficiencies and illnesses and cannot see or understand that they themselves are incompetent.

Cultural ignorance and false cultural. Pregnant women eating river clay to nourish their unborn child, or that fertility spirits determine the yield of your crops, or demons make people do bad things, or that gods decide which women will bear children, or that an erupting volcano can be stopped by human sacrifice are cultural ignorance that still exists. Claiming that perpetual unemployment, theft, drug abuse, child molestation, mindless violence, gratuitous sex, irresponsibility and ignorance are cherished elements of your special ethnic culture is ridiculous.

Logic, reason, cause and effect errors; if you cannot determine with near certainty what causes what, or from this action what is the likely outcome, if you do this, this will certainly happen, if you cannot see probable events in advance by foresight, then you are truly ignorant. If you cannot choose correctly that this is likely, this is not, you have poor logic. If you cannot imagine the likely future results from current events, you are ignorant. If you do not think ahead, if you have not collected knowledge and some wisdom from experiences where you were paying attention, then you are truly ignorant and perhaps stupid. It’s important to figure out which one, ignorant you can fix.

Facts and beliefs, that’s all there is. Facts are known, provable, repeatedly demonstrated to be true within our perception and understanding throughout recorded history. Beliefs are structured guesses, feelings, improvable, not demonstrable, believed by groups of followers throughout recorded history and about the future. Beliefs are shrouded with magic, miracles, and mysticism, and writings and teachings by charismatic leaders believed by some to have special affinity with the spirit world, gods, or God. Much opportunity exists in the realm of beliefs for trickery, illusion, delusions, curses, possessions, mystic forces, paranormal, mental distractions and spiritual mumbo-jumbo; and therefore the perpetuation of myths, lies and ignorance by charlatans, psychotics, and the charismatically deficient of all kinds.  Human decisions are mostly or more often based upon beliefs

Encouraging ignorance and dependency has expanded rapidly the past 50 years. Government entitlement programs, required safety equipment, warning labels, blaming inanimate objects and third persons, allowing frivolous suits, not grading student academic performance and behavior, not keeping score in athletic games; if people are not compared to the most competent among us, how are they to learn what things they need to study and improve, and for what things have they become an acceptable person, and what things must be accomplished to become a human in good standing.

Louis D Brandeis said, “The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in the insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well meaning but without understanding.”

I dislike nearly every view point and achievement of this intelligent and influential progressive Supreme Court Justice, except the most excellent insightful quote above. I doubt he ever understood the massive damage to human liberty his masterful persuasion brought.

Most programs and social systems in place today were ill conceived and hastily enacted without much, if any, thought as to their unintended consequences. Virtually none have been revisited since created to evaluate their effectiveness or eliminate harm.

These programs and systems, safety nets, like Social Security, Medicare, criminal rehabilitation, Food Stamps, Welfare, Affirmative Action, the Drug War, Extended Unemployment benefits that gift or grant people excessive, perpetual, unearned benefits are promoting dependency, enshrining ignorance, and destroying self esteem.

You will get more of what you reward, and less of what you tax.

Achievement, forethought, conservation, responsibility, and self reliance are discouraged, taxed, and penalized.

Ignorance, incapability, carelessness, thoughtlessness, irresponsibility and dependency are encouraged, subsidized and rewarded.

If you:

Tax jobs and reward unemployment;

Tax family life and reward out of wedlock child birth;

Punish achievement, and reward birthrights;

Punish conservation, and reward wastefulness;

Discourage savings, encourage over-spending;

Criminalize rights, celebrate crime;

Demean citizenship, idolize the corrupt;

Then you are truly ignorant and corrupt, and likely stupid!

29 August 2010

Keep Your God

In your heart, in your home, and in your church.

Your beliefs are not mine. Our beliefs may not be like anyone else’s.

I don’t want your God or mine in our government, or in our schools, or using public resources; religions do not pay taxes, and even if they did, the constitution prohibits it. Your God or mine has no place on public property, using public money or acting officially for non-believers, or acting exclusively in official ceremonies conducting religious utterances that impose upon and compel others out of politeness stand quietly conscripted appearing to respect our beliefs.

I don’t want your God in my home, not on my mind, not mandated or made official, not with any of my money or using government resources.

Follow your religion, speak out courageously and use your resources and those of your church.

Don’t use my money, our government, our property, our schools, or my appearance falsely portraying it as my consent to foist your beliefs on anyone else.

Stop using history, celebrity beliefs or numbers of followers to try to compel anyone else to believe as you do.  Try using principles, concepts and good works.

Stop seeking official recognition for your beliefs.

Stay out of government meetings, out of taxpayer funded school, and off public property; and stop trying to use our public resources to market your religion.

If your beliefs are good and useful, those wishing to believe as you do will come to your door.  You should not go to theirs.

Use your and your churches tax-exempt resources to put your religious beliefs into the contest of ideas. You don’t need the cloak of official recognition or the popularity of politicians or celebrities; unless your religion is weak and has little merit, or needs to apologize for something, and you are trying to force your beliefs upon others.

If it has merit, willing followers will find it.

16 August 2010

Unskilled and Unaware

"In 1995, McArthur Wheeler walked into two Pittsburgh banks and robbed them in broad daylight, with no visible attempt at disguise.  He was arrested later that night, less than an hour after videotapes of him taken from surveillance cameras were broadcast on the 11 o'clock news. When police later showed him the surveillance tapes, Mr. Wheeler stared in incredulity. "But I wore the juice," he mumbled. Apparently, Mr. Wheeler was under the impression that rubbing one's face with lemon juice rendered it invisible to videotape cameras (Fuocco, 1996).

We bring up the unfortunate affairs of Mr. Wheeler to make three points.  The first two are noncontroversial.  First, in many domains in life, success and satisfaction depend on knowledge, wisdom, or savvy in knowing which rules to follow and which strategies to pursue.  This is true not only for committing crimes, but also for many tasks in the social and intellectual domains, such as promoting effective leadership, raising children, constructing a solid logical argument, or designing a rigorous psychological study.

Second, people differ widely in the knowledge and strategies they apply in these domains (Dunning, Meyerowitz, & Holzberg, 1989; Dunning, Perie, & Story, 1991; Story & Dunning, 1998), with varying levels of success.  Some of the knowledge and theories that people apply to their actions are sound and meet with favorable results. Others, like the lemon juice hypothesis of McArthur Wheeler, are imperfect at best and wrong-headed, incompetent, or dysfunctional at worst.

Perhaps more controversial is the third point, the one that is the focus of this article.  We argue that when people are incompetent in the strategies they adopt to achieve success and satisfaction, they
suffer a dual burden: Not only do they reach erroneous conclusions and make unfortunate choices, but their incompetence robs them of the ability to realize it.  Instead, like Mr. Wheeler, they are left with the mistaken impression that they are doing just fine.  As Miller (1993) perceptively observed in the quote that opens this article, and as Charles Darwin (1871) sagely noted over a century ago,
"ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge"
 
Note this quoted text taken in its entirety from;
 
Unskilled and Unaware of It: How Difficulties in Recognizing One's Own
             Incompetence Lead to Inflated Self-Assessments

                    Justin Kruger and David Dunning
                             Cornell University
 
            Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
                     1999, Vol. 77, No. 6. ] 121-1134

06 August 2010

Stop Ignorant Unreliable Government

And Cut Programs That Endanger Sustainability.

Don’t start initiatives that can’t succeed. Recently there’s been talk of stopping economic fluctuations, avoiding recessions and depressions, eliminating risk, or squelching booms.

Are they nuts? They probably think they can predict the weather weeks in advance or change world-wide temperatures! Huh! Oh that’s right, they do.

We do not want to interfere in natural fluctuations. We don’t need economic fluctuation stopped; we need them anticipated.

I want preparation for economic inevitability's. Deposits set aside to pay unemployment during downturns, to spend to encourage economic activity from savings, not from a tax income stream we won't have. No amount of planning, or government programming, regulation or law will ever control the billions of individual purchasing and saving decisions made by people everyday, nor should they affect commercial activities of a free people.

I want preparations for global warming and ice ages, they will come. They have many times with little warning. Conserve some food, some things of value, some resources needed to sustain human life for as long a possible.

Conservation, preparation, and preservation require forethought and wisdom, something in short supply today.

If we do not prepare for bad times during good times, then no resources will be available to sustain us. There may be no way to secure funds that have accumulated, but as a country, as a society we must preserve surpluses and resist temptations to use them, to have resources available to survive inevitable hard times.

Trusting this vital task to ignorant, greedy, power mad, corrupt politicians clearly isn’t the best answer. A new, much more reliable system is necessary. preserving surpluses is so important that it may exceed the priority of all other human tasks, rights or authorities of governments, religions or peoples.

Nothing, no one, no business, or no government program is too big, or too important to fail, to stop, to modify, or to be eliminated if a free people chooses to use forethought and action to preserve their future well-being.

25 June 2010

No Illegal Immigrants

Enough Criminals Already.

I favor allowing some useful immigrants from all nations. My great, great grandfather was an immigrant from Norway and spoke only Norwegian. He quickly learned English. He insisted that all his offspring learn English and become Americans. My American ancestors quickly abandoned the language, habits and culture of their forefathers becoming Americans with reverence for their past.

No nation needs millions of people that cannot read or write in any language or that are fleeing prosecution for crimes committed there or here. No nation needs a large, ignorant, underclass to be taken advantage of by criminals, charlatans, politicians, and other unscrupulous takers.

Why would America want to become Haiti, Bangladesh, or Mexico; ignorance just breeds misery, corruption, disease, despair, poverty and crime. If you can’t learn American habits, and to read, write, and speak in English in a year or two; you should immediately return to whatever corrupt, malignant, ignorant culture you came from.

We don’t need you here if you can’t learn to contribute legally.

If you make more than you take, if you can imagine a new future for yourself and your family, if you can learn a new language and culture while respecting your old one, and learn to obey our laws, then you could become a proud American citizen.

If not, please go somewhere else.

02 June 2010

Smart President

"The people of these United States are the rightful masters of both Congress and courts not to overthrow the constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert that constitution."

Abraham Lincoln

31 May 2010

Sounds Right

'In the first place, we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the person's becoming in every facet an American, and nothing but an American...There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn't an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag... We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language.. And we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people.'

Theodore Roosevelt 1907

17 May 2010

Survey the American People

Ask Them What They Want

Mr. President, ask the American citizens which of the hundreds of major things the government thinks its doing, do they want cut and which ones they want eliminated, and which they may want delivered more efficiently.

It can easily be done on the internet via your website and by mail. It’s just a large survey. Use social security numbers to avoid duplicates and fraud. Then do carefully and intelligently, consistent with the constitution, what the majority wants.

It can easily be done with existing staff, budgets and computer resources, for much less than the National Census.

I believe you have the right to survey the people directly. The necessity for representatives to speak for citizens is long gone. House Representatives have never surveyed all the roughly 900,000 people they each represent, let alone Senators who represent millions of people in some states.

You will be amazed what you learn, if you’re not already too dazzled with yourself to learn.

You will be surprised how wildly popular you become.

16 May 2010

Stop Finding and Exaggerating Crises

Start Finding Efficient Solutions

Mr. President, you are no longer a community organizer. There are well known problems all around you. Your recent solutions are making more problems than they solve. Stop demonizing people, organizations and businesses.

Find efficient solutions that are effective. Do you know what efficient means? That’s when the solution saves more money than it costs.

Blaming and demonizing don’t create solutions. Neither does consensus. Leadership finds, develops and presents solutions. Make small efficient changes that cut the size and scope of Federal government. Consolidate tasks, functions and scopes. Condense offices, bureaus, and commissions back into their parent departments. Pare their staffs and scopes to the bare minimum.

Cut all their budgets, grants and subsidies. Cut everyone’s entitlements.

The American people want small national government that costs much less, and interferes much less in the affairs of its citizens.

Stop reforming and get busy cutting programs and simplifying policies and tax law. The only reform we’re interested in is cuts, reductions, and consolidations. After fifty years of government growing faster than the population and their ability to pay, we’ve had enough. We want the federal government to shrink and cost less.

Complicated laws, policies and taxes are just thinly disguised attempts to hide politics, favoritism and corruption.

Stop government interference in market transaction. Stop exemptions, stop credits, stop subsidies.

Cut all business taxes and most personal taxes, cut benefits, cut everything until government operates within its revenue.

You’ve already made a travesty of your first and only term as president. You’ve accomplished absolutely nothing of value for citizens and taxpayers, so far. Your childish manipulation of real life events is appalling.

Get new staff. The ones you have are destroying your presidency. They may know how to get inexperienced unknowns elected, but they know nothing of how to govern; ideologues for sure, statesman, not hardly.

Incidentally, I’m sick of seeing you on TV everyday. Propose efficient solutions or shut up. Oh! Also find your veto pen and use it.

10 May 2010

Chose Poorly

A beautiful fairy appeared one day to a destitute Mexican refugee outside an Arizona immigration office.

"Good man," the fairy said, "I've been sent here by President Obama and told to grant you three wishes, since you just arrived in the United States with your wife and eight children."

The man told the fairy, "Well, where I come from we don't have good teeth, so I want new teeth, maybe a lot of gold in them."

The fairy looked at the man's almost toothless grin and;

PING! He had a brand new shining set of gold teeth in his mouth!

"What else?" asked the fairy, "Two more to go?"

The refugee claimant now got bolder. "I need a big house with a three car garage in Annapolis on the water with eight bedrooms for my family and the rest of my relatives who still live in my country. I want to bring them all over here" --- and;

PING! In the distance there could be seen a beautiful mansion with a three car garage, a long driveway, a walkout patio with a BBQ in an upscale neighborhood overlooking the bay.

"One more wish," said the fairy, waving her wand.

"Yes, one more wish; I want to be like an American with American clothes instead of these torn clothes, and a baseball cap instead of this sombrero. And I want to have white skin like Americans" ---and

PING! The man was transformed - wearing worn out jeans, a Baltimore Orioles T-shirt and a baseball cap. He had his bad teeth back and the mansion had disappeared from the horizon.

"What happened to my new teeth?" he wailed, "Where is my new house?"

The fairy said:

"Tough shit, Amigo, you are a White American now, you'll have to fend for yourself," and she disappeared.

26 April 2010

Housing Bust

Who Didn’t Know It Was Coming

Most everyone that was paying attention or whoever said to anyone or thought to themselves, “Can you believe how much our neighbor’s house just sold for!” should have realized the housing boom was unsustainable.

Some smart people took advantage of it by selling extra housing assets on the way up, or avoided it by not borrowing to buy more house than they could afford to pay for when things turned down, which non-delusional people knew would happen.

A few really smart investors and politicians knew to “sell short” derivatives based on artificial housing values and bad loans, because they must surely go down.

Smart money managers, like Goldman Sachs, knew to balance their “long” and “short” positions with more “shorts” in housing derivatives as the bust became evident to those thinking and looking ahead.

Now the very politicians who created it are looking to persecute and crucify those who protected their investors from this normal market adjustment. It’s true the ignorant masses never like it when someone gains from their stupidity making money while they loose. They especially hate anyone bets or invests against them winning, and is proven right, and makes lots of money while they lose their home. There's something somehow un-american about betting something will fail while the inattentive suffer.

Some of the hypocrites that are publicly persecuting Goldman Sachs money mangers are Senators, House Banking and Finance Committee members, Media Moguls, Union Officials and Political Strategists whose retirement accounts benefited enormously by their money managers playing the housing market to fail, and are now taking advantage of the terrible losses of foolish people by buying up valuable real estate at the lowest prices in many decades, using low interest taxpayer funded bailout money to do it.

Shame on those who encouraged and permitted the pillaging of the ignorant and mentally deficient during this latest artificial and politically manipulated housing boom and bust, especially those we elected and pay to safeguard us, who deliberately profited on the way up and the way down using insider knowledge by virtue of their elected or appointed positions, especially Chris Dowd, Barney Frank, David Axelrod, and Rahm Emanuel.

Throw these manipulative, hypocritical, blood sucking leeches and tyrants out.

Racist, Anti-government violence

Incited by You, Mr. President

Arizona’s law to enforce Federal and State law passed by an overwhelming veto proof majority of duly elected representatives, and signed into law by Arizona’s duly elected Governor.

The President of the United States criticized in a public address yesterday the lawful order of the Chief Executive of one of the Nation’s finest most sensible states. Deliberately raising suspicions that it was racially motivated, and that enforcing Federal and state law is somehow unconstitutional and destructive to community policing.

Immediately after he questioned the lawful order of a duly elected Chief Executive of a sovereign state, violence broke out in the streets and at its Capitol in Phoenix.

Mr. President, inciting violence and speech bordering on sedition is not your job. You are no longer a community agitator.  Nor is it proper or lawful for you to engage in hate speech, or to publicly assert racism where none has yet occurred.

These behaviors by you, Mr. President are totally and completely wrong, very unprofessional, unethical and outright violations of Federal law.

You sir, have disgraced this nations people and should immediately resign.

22 April 2010

US Departments and Agencies

Hundreds of Them

Today I downloaded the index listing of US Departments and Agencies from USA.org. It was eleven pages in normal size print.  It included some state web pages I’ve edited out. It is my intent to review all of them to refresh my familiarity with what they think they are doing that citizens may want. Frankly, I’ve already seen many I would de-fund or cut substantially. What I’m going to do in future postings is summarize their mission and describe why I believe they should be cut severely or eliminated, and there are some that I’m suspicious of their value and constitutionally that may get in depth research. I’ve already discovered some I’ve never heard of and can’t imagine from their title what it is they could do for citizen-taxpayers.

It looks like about 250 of them, but it doesn’t seem to include many commissions, panels, boards and other activities I’ve heard of, but they may be within an agency or Department that is listed, like National Public Radio and Public Broadcasting System. Or they have changed their name to hide. I’m sure they are in there; I just haven’t found them yet.

What follows are those I would immediately un-fund and disband, and perhaps absorb a few of their functions into other Departments or Agencies where they might be useful. In this posting I’ll try to pick one from each lettered section of the index for outright abolishment, gone, history, you’re out of there.

 Agricultural Marketing Service

5000 employees’ nation wide selling farmers products.

 Broadcasting Board of Governors (Voice of America, Radio
TV Marti and more)

 Commission of Fine Arts

 Department of Education (ED)

 Elementary and Secondary Education

 Farm Credit Administration

 Global Affairs (State Department)

Isn’t this the State Department’s whole purpose?

 Helsinki Commission (Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe)

 Institute of Peace

 John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts

 No K

 Lead Hazard Control (Housing and Urban Development Department)

 Millennium Challenge Corporation

 National Endowment for the Arts

 Office of Government Ethics

They’ve got to be kidding, they’ve heard of ethics?

 Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration

 No Q

 Risk Management Agency (Agriculture Department)

 Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation

 Transportation Statistics, Bureau of

 U.S. Mission to the United Nations

This should be the State Department.

 Vietnam Educational Foundation

 Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars

 No X, Y or Z

I’m sure the people who work at these organizations and their sponsors are just positive their functions and services are important and even essential. If they are asked I would bet they would provide an elaborate, convoluted, important sounding and way too long of an explanation of why they are necessary.

I say, “If you can’t explain the need for it in two simple sentences or less, close it, it isn’t necessary!”

13 April 2010

Coldwater

John went to visit his 90 year old grandfather in a very secluded, rural area of Saskatchewan, Canada.

After spending a great evening chatting the night away, the next morning John's grandfather prepared breakfast of bacon, eggs and toast.

However, John noticed a film like substance on his plate, and questioned his grandfather asking,

'Are these plates clean?'

His grandfather replied,

'They're as clean as cold water can get them. Just you go ahead and finish your meal, Sonny!'

For lunch the old man made hamburgers. Again, John was concerned about the plates, as his appeared to have tiny specks around the edge that looked like dried egg and asked,

'Are you sure these plates are clean?'

Without looking up the old man said,

'I told you before, Sonny, those dishes are as clean as cold water can get them. Now don't you fret, I don't want to hear another word about it!'

Later that afternoon, John was on his way to a nearby town and as he was leaving, his grandfather's dog started to growl, and wouldn't let him pass.

John yelled and said, 'Grandfather, your dog won't let me get to my car'.

Without diverting his attention from the football game he was watching on TV, the old man shouted!

'Coldwater, go lay down now, yah hear me!'

Sanctions and Embargos

And Smugglers, Bandits and Pirates

Those who think sanctions will work to influence the cultures of the Middle East are ignorant of thousands of years of pure commerce as practiced in the real world.

I can’t recall a single episode of successful embargo anywhere in the world especially the Middle East. These ancient cultures have found and used every possible type of trade, commerce, bribery, extortion, piracy, smuggling, robbery and many other crimes for profit. Nomads and ancient city states used every trick and gimmick at their disposal to survive, prosper, build and destroy nations, cultures, enemies, families, friends and rulers since the time before Mesopotamian clay tablets.

Iraq traded “oil for food” for US currency, munitions, weapons, and many other prohibited products and services while under increasing scrutiny of more than a dozen UN sanctions. They may have moved “Weapons of Mass Destruction” to neighbors while under intense surveillance by the US in preparations for attacks.

Nomadic tribes have trafficked in every imaginable commodity across vast deserts by camel caravans in broad daylight and through raging sand storms on moonless nights finding willing customers hundreds of miles away for thousands of years.

Iran built and destroyed dozens of empires by conquering and controlling trade routes for thousands of years some still in use today.

It is highly unlikely that a non trading partner like the US can thwart the movement of anything, especially in concert with two or three of Iran’s current trading partners (Russia, China, Japan, India, Italy, turkey, South Korea, France) regardless what they may promise. Not to mention numerous other neighbors who will act as an intermediary with anyone to supply their needy neighbor for a massive profit. It has long been the regions way of life.

Keeping suppliers and customers apart is a lot like keeping rabbits from mating; futile.

Extreme efforts and precious resource will be required for marginal, if any, results. Any real success will require military interdictions at key locations with likely violence and international condemnation, leading most likely to an all out war with Iran and a few neighbors.

Don’t waste our time and money on silly sanctions and embargos. The US can’t even control prohibited commodities in its own country.

Stop Iran dead in their tracks now, or police them closely from now on.

Religion, Politics and Government

Few people irritate me more than politicians that attempt to legitimize themselves by invoking the blessings of God upon themselves and their political endeavors or trying to sanctify government events, processes or programs.

These horrifyingly corrupt, underhanded, manipulative, backstabbing, conniving, and often illegal and illegitimate activities should not have pleadings to God even mentioned during conducted ceremony or presentation any place or any time.

I’m not opposed to personal prayers by individual believers of any religious belief for guidance and strength to make the best possible decisions on behalf of all the people, including non-believers. Some of them could certainly use the extra help; many of their individual motives and behaviors could be improved by any divine influence.

But, their collective activities and unholy behaviors, their processes and programs cannot and should not be dignified by being self-blessed by someones appeal for spiritual intervention. It’s just a very thinly veiled attempt to insinuate that somehow God is involved or approves. It is hideous and probably unconstitutional to conduct any kind of prayer at taxpayer expense on taxpayer property. It is a thinly disguised attempt to portray the proceedings and themselves as somehow officially ordained by that religious idea. Publicly appearing to officially ask their God to cloak their ill-conceived and misguided self-serving behavior in any holiness is surely blasphemous, and clearly unconstitutional.

The business of government could not possibly be ordained nor even consented to by any true God. If Christ could see what the moneychangers and thieves (congress and lobbyists) are doing he would certainly throw them from the temple.

They don’t need Gods help to do what is right for our citizens. We just need honorable statesman and women to do the job for which we elected them and pay them.

If they can’t do that, then we’ve chosen poorly and need to repair that mistake at the very next opportunity.

Throw the moneychangers and thieves out.

14 March 2010

New School

In Order to form a More Valuable School

Purpose and Principles:

Inspire and enthuse students by thorough examinations of ethical values, wisdom and knowledge with instruction in discovery and analysis techniques exposing them to the expanse and diversity of human knowledge.

This is non-compulsory education. Enthusiastic participation and civil behavior are demanded. Superior achievement, ethics and morality are expected. Formal warnings for non-achievement or misbehavior will be issued once. Recurrence will result in removal and permanent ineligibility.

This is not public education; your eligibility and continued participation are a privilege, not a right. Tuition will be refunded on the percentage of the term remaining at removal.

Staffing:

This is a professional teaching opportunity. Chosen teachers will receive a one year contract. Upon completion of a successful one year contract, a successive one year contract maybe offered. No one at this school will have a contract term longer than one year. There are no rights or protections beyond those in the contract. You must have credentials and specialty certificates in advance. There are no unions or associations with official capacity at this school. You are a contracted professional.

Your job is to inspire your students with enthusiasm for learning. You will cover the curriculum with attention compelling techniques using a mix of modern experimental and proven methods; while teaching them to learn, to analyze, and to think independently. You will not tell them what to think. You will ask them what they think and then listen as part of the effort to determine if they are thinking independently. You will not volunteer you opinions and beliefs except when asked or as a useful example.

Use of real life experiences and visits to off sight activities and example events are encouraged. Curriculum relevant displays, demonstrations and visits by citizens, professionals, workers, community leaders and parents, and very sparingly even politicians, are encouraged using the widest variety of techniques from lecture to involvement, immersion, and organized student performances.

Teachers must be currently competent with modern electronic hardware, software, and Internet use for all facets of instruction, presentation, record-keeping, reporting and communication; and use Internet social media and other software to dramatically increasing efficiency of presentation, work assignment, and interaction with students, parents and colleagues. All students will have immediate individual access to fully functional computers with high speed Internet access at their work area and be capable of receiving and submitting assignments electronically.

Homework is entirely voluntary. You are the teacher, if they could be self-taught or their parents could teach them, you would not be necessary. Unassigned extra-curricular discovery is encouraged, and extra credit is acceptable for individually undertaken and submitted work.

Students will be given repeated chances to demonstrate behavior changes that result in achievement. Non achievers will receive addition encouragement. Parents of persistent non-achievers will be request to remove their children. Students will be advanced, retained or expelled solely upon the recommendation of the teacher.

Teach them useful fundamentals. Help them organize and use their memories. Teach them forms of logic and reasoning, organized analytical thought, and problem solving. Show them problem types and solution methods used in the entire variety of forms of intelligence. You are preparing these students for the future, not the past. Focus on likely future methods and needs. Show them how to find, evaluate and use newer informational forms, like electronic data, optical memory media, video and audio presentations.

Keep parents or guardians fully informed. Use modern Internet tools; they are. Do not require or expect much of parents. If they had the time or inclination to teach they wouldn’t pay us. Do not assume that they are anything beyond biological contributors. There maybe one or no parents in their household, if there is a home; there may not even be actual relatives or anyone who actually cares or is even semi conscious where they live, regardless of appearances or apparent means.

If public knowledge of your immoral, unethical, or illegal behavior cheats your students and their parents, or brings discredit to yourself, your colleagues or the school; you will be fired and your contract terminated immediately without recourse.

Facilities may be of any type or place that facilitates learning.

Instruction:

The following curricula should be touched daily, adjusted to be grade appropriate. Some should receive considerable attention at preschool and be increasing indirect or inferred as grade levels increases, but included none the less:

Intensely lead activities intended to socialize and motivate; familiarizing children with the structure and decorum of schooling.

Demonstrate simple behaviors courtesy, respect, consideration, tolerance, participation, sharing, contribution, respect, quiet, activity, and organized play

Expose students to sights, sounds, feelings and activities using language, art, music and games requiring courtesy, patience and respect of and for others. Appropriate level student exposure to planned activities, organized thought, reasoning, cause and effect logic, and early word, sound and symbol recognition lead by an instructor.

Teach them to listen carefully, speak logically, and read comprehensibly.

Teach them simple mathematics, using practical real life examples. Work through the widest possible variety of meaningful problems derived from written statements. Associate theorems and postulates after demonstrating how to use formula to get the answer to grade appropriate, practical, easily imaginable problems.

Teach them to see, feel, hear, and understand the world around them. Introduce honesty, dignity and basic respectfulness. Expose them to increase levels of anxiety, frustration, and disappointment with the purpose of teaching them to cope and tolerate.

Organize and exercise memory. Examine life lessons, values, morality and ethics. Explore human history, human events, and human organizations and enterprises. Money and managing it, credit and property, earning, saving and investing, economics, contracting and finance; and health, medicine, sanitation, and nutrition. Thorough instruction with numbers and arithmetic, and frequent practice, understanding fractions, other number systems.

Lead them in the discovery of imagination. Teach them forethought. Construct exercises that help them imagine a new and different future. Present problems and sub-optimum outcomes and examine causes and affects, and explore what choices would have produced less than optimum outcomes. Humans don’t create events and things they don’t first imagine.

Use gender appropriate games to encourage physical activity. Testing coping skills, socialization, and the strategy of games sedentary and physical to test forethought, concentration, conceptualization, and cooperation. Expose winners to the joy of success and losers to the disappointment of failure. Use the opportunity for real life object lessons.

Language, writing and speaking, reading, vocabulary and grammar, modern uses of speech and text, modern research, reporting, recording, storing, finding and retrieving written or spoken language, exposure to the sounds and origins of other languages.

Teach national history, US constitutional government, law, culture, society, human rights, business and markets forms, philanthropy and non-profit enterprises, forms of commerce, survey of world religions, nations and governments and geography

Survey of all the sciences, scientific logic, methods, language, history, scientific data, and theory, proof and revisions; exploration of higher mathematics. Teach deductive reasoning.

Explore modern and ancient devices and processes. Explain how they work and how they are used constructively. Explore the evolution of antiquities, and how common everyday things were made then and today; like a sharp knife, cheese, beer, bricks, soap; where foods comes from, how they are processed and preserved; how cell phones, memory chips, the Internet, etc. work. Have them choose from a list and find the answer by computer research, presenting their findings in a submitted paper and aloud to the class.

Explore world history and myths, US history and myths, current events US and world, survey politics, survey world religions, world governments, world cultures, US law, crime and punishment. Everyday will include a grade appropriate presentation and discussion of meaningful current events, not necessarily media news, but recent past or impending community, school, social or cultural events.

Teach them to double check all facts and calculations.  Use multiple sources.  Verify information from a trusted source with data from another creditable source.  Especially verify official government sources and prominent commercial sources.

Testing:

Testing should do more than provide indications of achievement, capabilities, or practice recall under stress. Practicing performance on demand, tolerating frustration, overcoming anxiety, refocusing instruction, experiencing achievement and failure, and cultivating determination should all be part of testing, as well as meeting statutory requirements.

Discussion

I hired and managed hundreds of employees during my 45 year career in science and technology management. Many of the people I did not select had one or more of the following deficiencies:

1. They did not write their knowledge, skill, experience and achievement concisely, relating them to meaningful work accomplishment objectives.

2. They did not read or listen carefully.

3. They did not speak logically and grammatically, or answer questions simply and concisely.

4. They did not have a well developed sense of perspective, time, breath, or depth of interest in the past, in current events, in the future, or in non-work activities or hobbies needed to be a well adjusted human.

5. They lacked ethics, morality, or values common to most of this planet’s major cultures, or any apparent knowledge of American values or other world cultures.

6. They lacked humility, toleration, consideration, cooperation, true compassion or empathy, real understanding of the human predicament, or any interest in the plight of others or a willingness to truly help anyone else participate.

7. They lacked enthusiasm, courage, conviction, determination, true grit, and were too quickly willing to say “I know” when they did not. They were truly mystified by cause and effect and often puzzled by repeatedly bad results from repeatedly poor choices.

I often hired those with letters of reprimand or disciplinary events (plus good knowledge and experience) that were based upon inequitable treatment or disputes about values they felt had been violated; because they at least had values they had thought about and truly believed something specifically improper had taken place. Many of them could easily explain their reasoning and became good leaders, with exemplary records and willing followers who knew they would be treated equitably. A few were just cleaver malcontents who did not understand people or work place requirements and frustrations. It was after all “work.” If it was all “fun” they would have been paying me instead of getting paid.

Summary

If you are not teaching children to be friendly, thoughtful, considerate, interesting, constructive, participating, full functioning human beings with a zest to understand the people and things of this world, then what are you doing and why? You should perhaps ask yourself, “What is the purpose of school and am I truly a teacher?”

09 March 2010

The Haircut

One day a florist went to a barber for a haircut.

After the cut, he asked about his bill, and the barber replied, 'I cannot accept money from you, I'm doing community service this week.' The florist was pleased and left the shop.

When the barber went to open his shop the next morning, there was a 'thank you' card and a dozen roses waiting for him at his door.

Later, a cop comes in for a haircut, and when he tries to pay his bill, the barber again replied, 'I cannot accept money from you, I'm doing community service this week.' The cop was happy and left the shop.

The next morning when the barber went to open up, there was a 'thank you' card and a dozen donuts waiting for him at his door.

Then a Congressman came in for a haircut, and when he went to pay his bill, the barber again replied, 'I can not accept money from you. I'm doing community service this week.' The Congressman was very happy and left the shop.

The next morning, when the barber went to open up, there were a dozen Congressmen lined up waiting for a free haircut.

And that, my friends, illustrates the fundamental difference between the citizens of our country and the politicians who run it.
 
Unknown

01 March 2010

Price Controls

Limit Supply, Increase Costs

The government must stop manipulating the health care market. Its policies and practices are artificially driving up costs and restricting supply. Get out and stay out of patient health choices, price control schemes, over regulation and massive new government programs this nation can’t afford.

This is the wrong plan. Health care is expensive for everyone else in part because government Medicare/Medicaid only reimburse for sixty percent 60% of costs. Non-government patients, insurance companies, and your Doctor must pay the other forty percent 40% or transfer the unpaid costs to other procedures artificially raising the costs paid by all patients.

There is already a shortage of primary care physicians, emergency services, and rural, small town and intercity clinics, especially in areas where most patients are Medicare or Medicaid users. If they can’t recover their costs, they will quit those services and places.

Want lower costs? Get government and their mandates out of health care, and encourage increases in health personnel, training, facilities and services; increase supply!

Stop providing health care to adults who do not pay. Continue to provide health care to any child that needs it. These are mostly people not eligible for Medicaid, why? They are here illegally. If they are citizens and poor, they can get Medicaid.

Stop mandating government’s experimental solutions; instead turn to freely chosen, private, open market based solutions. A constructive solution could be very minimal nationwide health insurance; provided by competitive insurers at very low premiums, not subsidized by taxpayers. An insurance voucher or credit card only good for health insurance could be issued to the poor giving them the opportunity to buy insurance for their children, and themselves, but nothing else.

The government could make changes that encourage more health care and medical service diversity like out-patient clinics, mobile diagnostics, non doctor medical practitioners, or convert more drugs to non-prescription and encourage location to underserved communities.

If government health care services or insurance are so valuable, let them be offered to all in a fair and open marketplace. Let’s see if Native Americans, Veterans, inmates, the elderly (Medicare), the poor (Medicaid), unemployed (COBRA) and the 270 million insured and the 30 million uninsured choose it freely with their voucher or their own resources over competitive private insurance and medical services of their own choice.

Stop demonizing health care providers, health insurance companies, and citizens who take care of their own health care needs, and don’t penalize them for taking care of themselves. If the government wants to provide health care access to those who haven’t earned it or are ineligible, cut many non-health government programs and send them health care credits, vouchers or health credit cards.

I doubt that government health services would be chosen freely by anyone, either currently conscripted or new users. All those currently provided health care by the government should immediately be allowed to take their benefit to any provider they wish, let see if they stay with government services. I doubt many would.

We all want a wide variety of possible choices, not mandates and compulsory conscription.

26 February 2010

Human Spaceflight Exploration

We've lost valuable time

From 1965 until 1971 my wife and I were privileged to work at Cape Canaveral landing men on the moon in the Apollo-Saturn program. Recently my friend Mike Cox expressed disappointment regarding the impacts and implications of cutbacks in future manned space exploration and suggested a blog posting.

So Mike, this one’s for you.

We are huge fans of space science research and the technology advancements that accompany it. The Manned Space programs in the late 60’s and early 70’s brought amazing advancements in materials, communication, chemistry, aeronautics, medicine, mechanics, guidance, sensors, robotics, energy collection, circuitry, computer memory and programming; and many of them have found their way into everyday improvements in our lives. Those kinds of things and much unimaginable advancement would most certainly spin off from a wisely undertaken, innovatively managed and efficiently executed human spaceflight exploration program.

An affordable level of human spaceflight exploration should never have been stopped.

I am doubtful that NASA’s Constellation program is wise, innovative or efficient.

The national pride contest between the US and some sinister menace probably won’t work again to redirect national resources or effort, like it did in the 1960’s.

Maybe the most innovative way to achieve human space exploration objectives is international prizes, money or commercial franchises, to entice private enterprises and non-governmental organizations to risk their profit and their reputations; coupled with a much smaller NASA with reduced roles in mission planning, development and decision-making, and launch and mission execution.

The mission objectives could be linked to prizes and franchise rights like;

Objective: Demonstrate human spaceflight capability to go to and beyond the moon; land, deliver payload, and launch from the lunar surface and return safely to Spaceport USA.

Prize: $50 million dollars and concession rights for launch operations and commerce at Spaceport USA.

Objective: Establish and people a continuously occupied Spaceport Luna.

Prize: $100 million dollars and ninety nine year lunar concession for all commercial transport, habitation, commerce, natural resource, and tourism on the moon for all spaceflights originating and terminating in the continental USA.

Objective: Execute a human spaceflight to Mars, land, collect geophysical samples, launch and return people and samples safely to Spaceport USA.

Prize: A billion dollars and a ninety nine year interplanetary transport concession with exclusive Mars habitation and natural resource rights.

Objective: Establish and people a continuously occupied Spaceport Mars.

Prize: $100 billion dollars and a ninety nine year concession for transport, commerce and tourism to, from, around, and on Mars originating from Spaceports Luna or USA.

I think this fundamental idea and process would yield significantly faster progress in planetary space exploration and colonization, significantly speed up useful scientific discoveries and technology developments.

The idea of the government rewarding businesses and organizations for demonstrated capability, or faster development and completion of objectives is not at all unusual in our history. Intercontinental railways, canals, pony express, telegraph, undersea cable, radio and TV broadcast, electrical distribution, communication, orbital satellites, etc; all have had awards, rewards, franchises or concessions, many that still exist; making possible well known companies still operating today.

NASA is not without well deserved credit for many outstanding achievements, but at what costs in resources and lost opportunities. Their very poor management is bureaucratic, shortsighted and uninspiring. It is disappointing what they might have accomplished with the resources and time they have wasted. Have scientists, engineers or government officials do things, don’t let them manage things.

Just like the military is best at running things when our lives, liberty or pride are at stake; business organizations and individuals are best at getting it done when their money and their reputations are at stake.

Choose objectives, establish, guarantee, and advertise big prizes, impose only minimum restrictions and requirements, and get out of the way except to verify achievement before awarding the prize. Don’t exclude foreign enterprises and people or any reasonably qualified contestants.

Let’s hurry up and get restarted, we’re way behind where we should have been.

10 February 2010

Kit Carson

His Life and Times
















American Frontiersman, Soldier, Western Guide, and Indian Agent

Born: December 24, 1809
Madison County, Kentucky
Died: May 23, 1868, Fort Lyon, Colorado
Buried: Taos, New Mexico

Kit Carson first gained fame as a distinguished guide for explorers in the frontier west of the Mississippi River; Carson soon became legend.

Before he became a legend

Christopher "Kit" Carson was born in Madison County, Kentucky, on December 24, 1809. His father, Lindsey Carson, married Rebecca Robinson in 1796. Kit was the sixth of ten children. The Carson family soon settled in Howard County, Missouri. When Kit was just nine years old, his father was killed in a tragic accident.

It is doubtful that Carson received much of a formal education. Although he spoke several languages, he remained unable to read and write his entire life. At the age of fourteen he became an apprentice to a saddlemaker. Carson left after a year joining a group of traders heading to Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Life on the western frontier

Carson's career in the West spanned the years from 1825 to 1868, a period of rapid national expansion, exploration, and settlement. From 1827 to 1829 young Carson spent time working as a cook, driving a wagon, interpreting Spanish, and mining copper. In August 1829 he gained valuable experience trapping animals along the streams of Arizona and southern California.

In 1831 Carson returned to New Mexico, where he joined up with the experienced trapper, Thomas “Broken Hand” Fitzpatrick (1799–1854). With Fitzpatrick's men, Carson headed north into the rugged central Rocky Mountains. For the next ten years, Carson worked as a trapper in what is today Utah, Colorado, Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana. Carson learned what he needed, becoming a respected guide.

In 1836 Carson married an Arapaho Indian woman, Waa-Nibe, “Singing Grass.” The couple had two children, only a daughter survived. After his first wife died, Carson married a Cheyenne woman, “Making-Our-Road”. The marriage did not last, and Carson took his daughter to St. Louis, Missouri, for her education. For the next eight years, Carson split his time between his daughter in St. Louis and his trapping duties around Taos, New Mexico.

By 1842 Carson met and became engaged to the daughter of a prominent Taos family; Josefa Jaramillo. After receiving instruction, he was baptized into the Catholic Church. At 34 Carson married his third wife, 14-year-old Josefa, on February 6, 1843. They had eight children together.

A turning point

In 1842 explorer John C. Fremont landed in St. Louis. Fremont came looking to hire the well-known guide Andrew Drips to lead his expedition to the Wind River in Wyoming. Unable to find Drips, Fremont chose Carson. From June until September, Carson guided Fremont’s party west through South Pass to the Wind River Mountains and back to Missouri.

Over the next several years, Carson and Fitzpatrick worked as guides for Fremont on three expeditions through Oregon and California. The timing could not have been better for Fremont or Carson. The American public was fascinated with life in the West and the tales of hostile Indian tribes and unsettled land found on the western frontier. Fremont’s published reports on his expeditions soon became famous, as did Kit Carson. Although many of Carson's adventures became wildly exaggerated, no one denied his contributions to settling the American West. Many of Carson's accomplishments were popularized in Dr. De Witt C. Peters's 1858 book, The Life and Adventure of Kit Carson, the Nestor of the Rocky Mountains. (By referring to Carson as a nestor, Dr. Peters meant that Carson was a leader in his field.)

In his journal entry for April 18, 1844, Fremont wrote “We struck the great object of our search—The Spanish Trail—which here was running directly north.” He had reached the Old Spanish Trail above Cajon Pass at the edge of California’s South Coast Basin, just before the trail began its bend to the east, descending into the Mojave River Valley.

As the party worked its way across the Mojave Desert, it encountered two New Mexican refugees, a middle-aged man, Andrés Fuentes, and a boy, Pablo Hernández, who were the only survivors of a small party from Santa Fe, New Mexico that had been massacred by Indians who had killed two men, staked two women to the ground and mutilated them, and stolen 30 horses. The two had been out herding and escaped among the loose animals. They left the horses at Bitter Spring and continued west until their chance meeting with the Americans. The expedition reached Bitter Spring, the stock had been driven off by the Indians. Carson and Godey promptly volunteered to go in pursuit and attempt a recovery. They tracked the Native band, locating them, rushed into their encampment. They killed two, scattered the rest, and returned with the horses. Upon their return Fremont wrote dramatically in his journal, “This expedition of Carson and Godey may be considered among the boldest…in the annals of western adventure. Two men, in a savage desert, pursue day and night an unknown body of Indians…attack them on sight—defeat them in an instant—and for what? To punish the robbers of the desert and to avenge the wrongs to Mexicans whom they did not know, I repeat: it was Carson and Godey who did this.” This incident from Fremont’s second expedition report is probably where Kit Carson’s legend was born.

Other Mojave Incidents

On the Muddy River in Nevada, the party was surrounded and threatened by 300 hostile Indians. They may have been Southern Paiutes or possibly Utes on their way to coastal California to rustle livestock. Through sheer bravado, Carson dispersed the Indians when they refused his order to withdraw. Carson often surprised natives by threatening with bravado to kill their leaders first, in their native language.

Many episodes in his early career were linked to the Old Spanish Trail and the Mojave Desert. After delivering dispatches in Los Angeles he reported for military duty, since he was now a lieutenant. The governor assigned him to spend the winter in command of a detachment guarding Cajon Pass on the Old Spanish Trail. His instructions were to intercept thieves, Indians, or others who might be fleeing eastward with stolen animals.

A soldier's career

In 1846 Carson served in California with Fremont at the outbreak of the Mexican War 1846 - 1848 that resulted in U.S. ownership of much of what is now the American Southwest. His duties were quite dangerous, as he carried messages between command posts in enemy territory. When Carson was sent to Washington with dispatches, he was stopped by General Stephen W. Kearny (1794–1848) in New Mexico and ordered to lead his troops west to California. At the battle of San Pascual (1846) near San Diego, with Kearny's tired men losing the battle, Carson and two others slipped through enemy lines to go for reinforcements. Although Kearny's men were unable to take San Pascual, they soon captured San Diego, San Gabriel, and Los Angeles in rapid succession. Later, President James K. Polk (1795–1849) called Carson a hero and appointed him lieutenant in the mounted rifle regiment. However, the Senate rejected this appointment, and Carson returned to Taos.

Career as an Indian agent

By 1849 Carson had settled near Taos to farm and occasionally scouted for army units fighting hostile tribes. Carson also served in the Office of Indian Affairs, first as an agent and then as a superintendent of Indian affairs for the Colorado Territory. In 1854 he became the agent for several southwestern tribes. Carson worked for years to keep peace and ensure fair treatment of Native Americans.

While working for the Office of Indian Affairs, Carson often clashed with his superior, Territorial Governor David Meriwether. Carson disagreed with many of Meriwether's policies and thought that Native Americans were being treated unfairly. In 1856 their conflicts boiled over. Meriwether suspended Carson and later arrested, charging him with disobedience and cowardice. Carson soon apologized and got his job back as agent.

Back in the army

With the outbreak of the Civil War (1861–65), Carson left his position with Indian Affairs and was soon appointed a lieutenant colonel commanding the First New Mexico Volunteer Regiment. During the war, Carson fought against invading Confederates at the battle of Val Verde, NM. Carson also directed successful campaigns against the Apache and Navajo from 1862 until 1864, with final battles against the Kiowa, Comanche, and Apache in the Texas panhandle. In 1865 he was appointed as brigadier general of volunteers and for the next two years held assignments in the West, leaving the army in 1867.

Conflicts with the Navajo

Army contact was prompted by a Navajo raid on Socorro, New Mexico near the end of September, 1846. General Kearny, passing nearby on his way to California learned of the raid and directed Col. William Doniphan to send a regiment of soldiers into Navajo country to secure a peace treaty.

At a winter meeting Col. Doniphan informed the Navajo that all their land now belonged to the United States, and the Navajo and New Mexicans were now the "children of the United States." In spite of this insult, the Navajo signed the Bear Spring treaty, on November 21, 1846. The treaty forbade the Navajo to raid or make war on the New Mexicans, but allowed the New Mexicans to make war on the Navajo, if they saw fit. Despite the treaty, the Navajo continued raids, as did the Apache, Ute, Comanche, and Kiowa.

On August 16, 1849 the U.S. Army began an expedition into the heart of Navajo country led by Col. John Washington, the military governor of New Mexico. The expedition included nearly a thousand infantry, hundreds of horses and mules, a supply train, 55 native Pueblo scouts, and four artillery guns.

On August 29–30, 1849, Washington's expedition needed water and food, and began pillaging Navajo cornfields. It was clear the Navajo intended to resist. Washington was still able to communicate that the Navajo and the whites could "still be friends, if the Navajo came with their chiefs the next day and signed a treaty."

The next day Chief Narbona came once again to "talk peace," along with several other headmen. An accord was reached on nearly every matter. When a New Mexican thought he saw his stolen horse and the Navajo protested its return, a scuffle broke out. The Navajo position was that the horse had passed through several other owners and now belonged to its Navajo owner. Col. Washington sided with the New Mexican. The Navajo owner took his horse and fled. Washington told the New Mexican to go pick out any Navajo horse he wanted. The Navajo figured out what was happening, and turned and fled. At this, Col. Washington ordered his soldiers to fire.

Seven Navajo were killed; the rest ran and could not be caught. One of the dying was Chief Narbona, who was scalped as he lay dying by a New Mexican souvenir hunter. This massacre prompted the warlike Navajo leaders such as Manuelito to gain influence over those who had advocated peace.

Carson's Navajo campaign

Raids by Native Americans had been constant up through 1862, and New Mexicans were demanding that something be done. Col. Canby devised a plan to remove Navajo to a distant reservation, but Canby was promoted to general and recalled east. His replacement as Commander of the Federal District of New Mexico was Brigadier General James H. Carleton.

Carleton believed that the Navajo conflict was the reason for New Mexico's "depressing backwardness." He turned to Kit Carson to help him fulfill his plans for upgrading New Mexico and his own career; Carson was nationally known and had helped boost the careers of several military commanders.

Carleton used the anxieties stirred up by the Confederate invasion and that the Texans might return. The territory was already on a war footing. The whole society was alert and inflamed; why not direct this energy toward something useful? Carleton immediately declared a state of martial law with curfews and mandatory passports for travel, then, brought all his authority to bear on cleaning up the Navajo mess.

Furthermore, Carleton believed there was gold in the Navajo's country and they should be driven out to allow development. Before Carleton's Navajo campaign he would force the Mescalero Apache to Bosque Redondo. Carleton ordered Carson to kill all the men of that tribe, and say that he had been sent to "punish them for their treachery and crimes."

Carson was appalled by this brutal order and refused to obey it. He accepted the surrender of more than a hundred Mescalero warriors who sought refuge with him, and relocated them within a month.

When Carson learned that Carleton intended for him to pursue the Navajo he sent a resignation letter dated February 3, 1863. Carleton refused to accept it and used his personal persuasion to maintain Carson's cooperation. Using language similar to that used on the Mescalero Apache, Carleton ordered Carson to lead an expedition against the Navajo, and to say to them, "You have deceived us too often, and robbed and murdered our people too long, to trust you again at large in your own country. This war shall be pursued against you if it takes years, now that we have begun, until you cease to exist or move. There can be no other talk on the subject."

Under Carleton's direction, Carson instituted a scorched earth policy, which eventually coerced the Navajo to surrender. He was aided by long-standing enemies of the Navajos, chiefly the Utes. Carson was pleased with the Utes, but they went home early when they could not keep what they took from the Navajo.

Carson also had difficulty with his New Mexico volunteers. Troopers deserted and officers resigned. Carson accepted resignations saying, "As I do not wish to have any officer in my command that is not contented or willing to put up with as much inconvenience and privations for the success of the expedition as I undergo myself."

There were no pitched battles, only a few skirmishes in the Navajo campaign. Carson rounded up and took prisoner every Navajo he could find. In January 1864, Carson sent a company into Canyon de Chelly to investigate the last Navajo stronghold. The Navajo surrendered because of lack of food supplies.

In the spring of 1864, 8,000 Navajo men, women and children were marched or rode in wagons 300 miles to Fort Sumner. Navajos call this “The Long Walk.” Although Carson had returned home to Taos before the march began, he is held responsible by some Navajo for breaking his word that they would not be harmed. Perhaps 300 died along the way and many more during the next four years on the reservation. In 1868, after signing a treaty with the U.S. government, these Navajos and thousands of non-reservation Navajo were allowed to return to their homeland, where a large Navajo Reservation exists around Canyon de Chelly today.

In 1868 Carson was appointed superintendent of Indian affairs for the Colorado Territory, but he never worked in this position. He died May 23, 1868, at Fort Lyon, Colorado.

Although Carson's later career in the army and his work with Native Americans was very impressive, the name Kit Carson will forever be linked to tales of the wild frontier and westward expansion.

For More Information

Abbott, J.S.C., LIFE OF KIT CARSON.

Burdett, Charles, LIFE OF KIT CARSON.

Carson, Kit. Kit Carson's Autobiography. Edited by Milo Milton Quaife. Chicago: R. R. Donnelley & Sons Co., 1935. Reprint, Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1966.

Carter, Harvey L. Dear Old Kit: The Historical Christopher Carson. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1968.

Ellis, Edward Sylvester. The Life of Kit Carson. Lake Wales, FL: Lost Classics Book Co., 1998.

24 January 2010

Haiti

What’s Wrong?

After decades of international effort and billions of dollars from the US and around the world, Haiti remains a starving, diseased, corrupt, ignorant, impoverished semi-nation, perhaps the worst place in the western hemisphere before the earthquake.

It is said that more faith-based organizations operate there than any place on earth, except India. It is often repeated that the average Haitian survives on 2 dollars per day. I’m unable to confirm if that is accurate, but according to the CIA World Fact Book, Haiti as a French colony was once the wealthiest nation in the Caribbean. Independent since 1804, it has been plagued by lawlessness, disease, corruption and political violence for most of its history, finally inaugurating a democratically elected president and parliament in May of 2006.

Its population is 9,035,536, and its area is 27,750 sq km, ranking 153rd, about the size of Massachusetts. Its literacy rate is 52.9% of age 15 and over that can read and write in any language. Its ethnic makeup is 95%, black, 5% mulatto and white. Claimed religions - Roman Catholic 80%, Protestant 16% (Baptist 10%, Pentecostal 4%, Adventist 1%, other 1%), none 1%, other 3%, but roughly half of the population practices voodoo. The official languages are French and Creole. People living with aids - 120,000 (2007 est.), 43rd in the world. With1.4% of GDP (1991) spent on education, its 175th in the world.

Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere with 80% of the population living under the poverty line and 54% in abject poverty. Two-thirds of all Haitians depend on the agricultural sector, mainly small-scale subsistence farming, and are vulnerable to frequent natural disasters, made worse by the country's widespread deforestation. While the economy has recovered in recent years, registering positive growth since 2005, four tropical storms in 2008 severely damaged the transportation infrastructure and agricultural sector. US economic engagement under the Haitian Hemispheric Opportunity through Partnership Encouragement (HOPE) Act, passed in December 2006, has boosted apparel exports and investment by providing tariff-free access to US markets. HOPE II, passed in October 2008, further improved the apparel export sector extending preferences to 2018; the apparel sector accounts for two-thirds of Haitian exports and barely one-tenth of GDP. Remittances are the primary source of foreign exchange, equaling nearly a quarter of GDP and more than twice the earnings from exports. Haiti suffers from high inflation, a lack of investment, and a severe trade deficit.

Since 2004, about 8,000 peacekeepers from the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) maintain civil order; despite efforts to control illegal migration, Haitians cross into the Dominican Republic and sail to neighboring countries. Haiti claims US-administered Navassa Island. Haiti is a primary Caribbean transshipment point for cocaine en route to the US and Europe, and a center for substantial bulk cash smuggling activity. Colombian narcotics traffickers favor Haiti for illicit financial transactions, pervasive corruption and significant cannabis use.

There have been frequent unofficial and official US interventions in Haiti for over the past 200 years. Below are a few examples.

Haiti Show of Force 1888

On 20 December 1888 a display of force persuaded the Haitian Government to give up an American steamer which had been seized. Rebellion, intrigue, and conspiracy continued to be commonplace.

Navassa Island Incident 1889-1891

Uninhabited Navassa Island was claimed by the US in 1857 for its guano (organic phosphate fertilizer), and mining took place between 1865 and 1898. In 1889 the island's operation passed to the Navassa Phosphate Company of Baltimore, Maryland which mined with African-American laborers

Abusive conditions soon provoked a race riot and the workers hacked off the arms, legs and heads of some of the whites. At the end of the battle five white supervisors were dead and others injured. US warships gathered up the people and bodies and took them to Baltimore. October 1889 the USS Galena took nine ring-leaders to the United States Marshal on 25 October 1889. A total of eighteen of the workers were returned to Baltimore for trials.

Intervention in Haiti (1914)

The country's most productive president, Cincinnatus Leconte, had died in a freak explosion in the National Palace in August 1912. Five contenders claimed the country's leadership over the next three years.

During 1914, US naval forces intermittently protected American nationals from rioting and revolution in Haiti. The United States periodically considered annexing the whole Island of Hispaniola, but the divisive issue of slavery kept the nation from acting. Until 1862 the United States refused to recognize Haiti's independence because the free, black, island nation symbolized opposition to slavery.

Occupation of Haiti (1915-34)

Civil disturbances and lack of a friendly stable government caused the United States to occupy and rule Haiti by military government between 1915 and 1934. During the occupation infrastructure development made material improvements to the country and the peoples lives. Port-au-Prince as the major city and trading center is largely the result of the changes made during the occupation. Resentment of the foreign occupation led to protests and several notorious episodes in which many Haitian civilians were killed by the US Army and Marines. When U.S. service members left in 1934, Haiti reverted to their typical dictatorial style.

A former governor general of the Philippines, W. Cameron Forbes, headed the Forbes Commission that praised improvements made by United States, but criticized the exclusion of Haitians from positions of real authority in the government or constabulary. The commission further asserted that "the social forces that created [instability] still remain--poverty, ignorance, and the lack of a tradition or desire for orderly free government."

Operation Uphold Democracy

In December 1990 Jean-Bertrand Aristide won 67% of the vote in an election deemed free and fair by international observers. He was overthrown by elements of the army and forced to leave the country in September 1991.

From October 1991 to June 1992, President Joseph Nerette led an unconstitutional de facto regime and governed with a parliamentary majority and the armed forces. In June 1992, he resigned and Parliament approved Marc Bazin as prime minister with no president. In June 1993, Bazin resigned and the UN imposed an oil and arms embargo, bringing the Haitian military to the negotiating table.

President Aristide and Gen. Raoul Cedras, head of the Haitian armed forces, signed the UN-brokered Governors Island Agreement on July 3, 1993, establishing a 10-step process to restore constitutional government and return President Aristide by October 30, 1993. The military derailed the process and the UN re-imposed economic sanctions. The military and the de facto government sanctioned repression, assassination, torture, and rape in open defiance of the international community's condemnation.

In May 1994, the military selected Supreme Court Justice Emile Jonassaint to be provisional president of its third de facto regime. The UN and the U.S. reacted by tightening economic sanctions. On July 31, 1994, UN Resolution 940 authorized member states “to use all necessary means” to facilitate the departure of Haiti's military leadership and restore constitutional rule and Aristide's presidency.

The United States formed a multinational force (MNF) to carry out the UN's mandate by military intervention. US objectives were foster democratic institutions and reduce the flow of illegal immigrants. The Military-backed regime did not relinquish authority becoming increasingly repressive. Deteriorating conditions resulted in tens of thousands of impoverished Haitians fleeing the country, many attempting to enter the United States.

Operation Secure Tomorrow.

After President Jean-Bertrand Aristide's party swept legislative elections in 2000 they were widely dismissed as flawed and international donors froze millions of dollars in aid. Unfortunately, there were irregularities that occurred in the election and the vote count. Aristide's party claimed an overall victory in disputed legislative and municipal elections. In November 2000, the opposition boycotted the presidential election and Aristide won unopposed.

By 2001, external support for Aristide had receded. President Clinton had restored Aristide to power, an action that Republicans opposed.

On 04 February 2004 the international community, made up of United States, Canada, France, the OAS, CARICOM, and the United Nations, presented a tough peace plan. The plan called for three persons from the international community to select a council of seven wise persons, who would then choose who would end up being a prime minister. The President accepted, but the opposition rejected the peace plan, and the rebels could not be controlled.

On 29 February 2004 Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide fled the country, and the country's Supreme Court chief justice assumed leadership as hundreds of loyal armed militants protested outside the national palace. In the neighborhood surrounding the national palace, gangs loyal to the president patrolled the streets cars and shot randomly at local residents. Elsewhere in Haiti rebels took over Haiti's third largest city, Les Cayes and controlled much of northern Haiti advancing to within 60 kilometers of the capital.

Immediately after his departure President Aristide said he had been "kidnapped" and taken by force to the Central African Republic.” Congress member Maxine Waters said Aristide told her that he had been threatened by US diplomats, who told him that if he did not leave Haiti, that they would withdraw Aristide's security and would allow paramilitary leader Guy Philippe to storm the palace and kill him. Randall Robinson, founder of TransAfrica said that Aristide emphatically denied that he had resigned, and said "He was abducted by the United States in the commission of a coup."

On Sunday 29 February 2004, the UN Security Council adopted Resolution 1529 endorsing the deployment of a Multinational Interim Force to Haiti.

Operation New Horizons.

In a region of scarce resources, New Horizons engineering and medical exercises have significantly benefited the people of the Caribbean, while enhancing the capabilities of US Armed Forces to deploy and train in foreign environments. During 2001, Southern Command conducted three New Horizons exercises in the Caribbean area -- Bahamas, St. Vincent, and St. Lucia. Fiscal year 2002 saw three more New Horizons exercises in Barbados, Dominica, and Jamaica.

Operation Unified Response.

The magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck Haiti on Tuesday 12 January 2010 collapsed the presidential palace, monuments, and the city's largest hospital. Shoddily built schools and houses lay in ruins across the densely populated city. Haitian Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive told (CNN) Wednesday, he believes more than 100,000 people may be dead. Working hospitals were overflowing, and bodies lined the roadways. The International Red Cross said up to 3 million people have been affected. Development efforts have suffered severe setbacks because of political violence, lawlessness, corruption and natural disasters.

President Barack Obama directed a swift, coordinated effort from the U.S., saying "the people of Haiti will have the full support of the United States in the urgent effort to rescue those trapped beneath the rubble and to deliver the humanitarian relief of food, water and medicine that Haitians will need in the coming days." The United States has launched a major civilian and military response led by U.S. Agency for International Development Administrator Rajiv Shah, who says the immediate objective is to save lives.

Here’s what I Think.

Aid, not money, should be sent to help the Haitian people recover, to the extent their corrupt repressive government will allow from this current disaster.

I will not be voluntarily contributing any more money to Haiti or Haitians. Our voluntary tax-exempt donations and involuntary redirected tax payments and Federal aid contributions over our working lives appears to total about $15,000 dollars in today’s money, and I believe that’s much more than our fair share.

It will be a shame if any more of my hard earned overly taxed, money finds its way to Haiti, especially after the injuries, suffering, and disease from this terrible disaster have been relieved.

It is a mistake to keep giving the repressive government and wealthy elites of Haiti more money and resources to continue pillaging and abusing the ignorant people of Haiti.

If we keep shielding them from the penalties for their mistakes, or allowing them to escape their poor decisions, they will continue to make those same mistakes. If they are to improve themselves they must be allowed to understand the true and complete costs of their ignorant, destructive behaviors.

Ignorance, poverty, corruption, drug abuse, sexual abuse, and crime is what we have encouraged, and it’s what we tolerated, so that is what we have taught them that we will allow. And no matter how badly they act, the well-meaning will always shield them from their fate.

Let them suffer the pain and penalty of their bad choices and foolish behavior; perhaps they will eventually learn to save themselves, if not, they should never again be aided.