Monthly Archives: April 2011

Senator Pryor asks for Spending Cut Suggestions! Here are a few!(Brummett questions Pryor’s pledge to cut spending)(Part 30)(Royal Wedding Part 17)

A car lies overturns and buildings destroyed ...

Car lies overturns and buildings destroyed

A car lies overturns and buildings destroyed in Tuscaloosa, Ala., Wednesday, April 27, 2011. A wave of severe storms laced with tornadoes strafed the South on Wednesday; buildings across swaths of the university town were damaged or destroyed

The Associated Press reported:

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The death toll from severe storms that punished five Southern U.S. states jumped to a staggering 178 Thursday after Alabama canvassed its hard-hit counties for a new tally of lives lost.

Alabama’s state emergency management agency said it had confirmed 128 deaths, up from at least 61 earlier.

“We expect that toll, unfortunately, to rise,” Gov. Robert Bentley told ABC’s “Good Morning America.”

Mississippi officials reported 32 dead in that state and Tennessee raised its report to six from one. Another 11 have been killed in Georgia and one in Virginia.

The fierce storms Wednesday spawned tornadoes and winds that wiped out homes and businesses, forced a nuclear power plant to use backup generators and prompted the evacuation of a National Weather Service office.

The National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Okla., said it received 137 tornado reports around the regions, including 66 in Alabama and 38 in Mississippi.

One of the hardest-hit areas was Tuscaloosa, a city of more than 83,000 and home to the University of Alabama. The city’s police and other emergency services were devastated, the mayor said, and at least 15 people were killed and about 100 were in a single hospital.

April 27, 2011 Close Range Mississippi Tornado!

Senator Mark Pryor wants our ideas on how to cut federal spending. Take a look at this video clip below:

Senator Pryor has asked us to send our ideas to him at cutspending@pryor.senate.gov and I have done so in the past and will continue to do so in the future. Here are a few more I just emailed to him myself at 7:26 am CST on April 28, 2011.

Is Mark Pryor sincere in his pledge to cut wasteful spending? John Brummett suggests he is not. I am hopeful that he is.

John Brummett in his article “Pryor’s words drift in gentle breeze,” Arkansas News Bureau, April 24, 2011 asserted:

By offering the momentary illusion of substance, U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor gave a vintage performance the other day at the Political Animals Club.

The first report I came across declared that Pryor had said he would not vote to raise the federal government’s debt ceiling unless that action was accompanied by real and significant spending cuts.

That sounded like the senator only to a limited extent, that being the extent to which he often propounds as much like a Republican as a Democrat and can be flat wrong…

But this pronouncement didn’t sound like the senator in another respect, that being the one by which he appeared to be making a boldly declarative statement (even if wrong). Pryor’s style is the aforementioned momentary illusion of substance, meaning a statement that sounds real as the sound waves reach your ears, only then to drift away with the gentle breeze.

Indeed, the next report I came across clarified the matter. Pryor had not declared that he would insist on real and meaningful spending cuts before he voted to raise the debt ceiling. He had declared only that he would insist on a real and meaningful “commitment” to debt reduction.

Commitment is not an empirical thing. It is of the heart, mind and soul, thus not visible to the naked eye. Pryor was not making his debt-limit vote contingent on actual reductions in spending. He was making the vote contingent on reading the minds of his colleagues.

In my past posts I could have been accused of giving just general ideas of where to cut. Now I am starting in with specifics that are taken from the article “Federal Spending by the numbers, Heritage Foundation, June 1, 2010 by Brian Riedl. He notes:

  • Washington spends $60,000 per hour shooting Air Force One photo-ops in front of national landmarks.
  • Congress has ignored efficiency recommendations from the Department of Health and Human Services that would save $9 billion annually.
  • Taxpayers are funding paintings of high-ranking government officials at a cost of up to $50,000 apiece.
  • The state of Washington sent $1 food stamp checks to 250,000 households in order to raise state caseload figures and trigger $43 million in additional federal funds.
  • Suburban families are receiving large farm subsidies for the grass in their backyards—subsidies that many of these families never requested and do not want.
  • Homeland Security employee purchases include 63-inch plasma TVs, iPods, and $230 for a beer brewing kit.
  • The National Institutes of Health spends $1.3 million per month to rent a lab that it cannot use.
  • Congress recently spent $2.4 billion on 10 new jets that the Pentagon insists it does not need and will not use.
  • __________________________________________
  • 2010

    With glossy waves and a rosy glow, Middleton announced her engagement to Prince William._______________________________________________________tvnewsblog.tkPrince William has spoken of his and fiancee Kate Middleton’s happiness, as the newly-engaged couple faced the cameras for the first time.The couple, both 28, will marry next spring or summer after he proposed while on holiday in Kenya in October.

    In: Joss Stone

    Joss Stone also made the cut—the English soul singer and songwriter performed at a memorial concert held at London’s Wembley Stadium on July 1, 2007, in honor of what would have been the late Princess of Wales’ 46th birthday. “We wanted to have this big concert full of energy, full of the sort of fun and happiness which I know she would have wanted,” said Prince William, who organized the event with his brother, Harry. The memorial concert was followed by a church service on August 31, the 10th anniversary of Diana’s death.

    __________________________________________

    Kate Middleton during a visit to Witton Country Park in Darwen, northwest England, on April 11, 2011.

    CBS News’ royal contributor Victoria Arbiter gave Russ Mitchell a look into Prince William and Kate Middleton’s to do list as their royal wedding approaches.

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Balanced Budget Amendment the answer? Boozman says yes, Pryor no (Part 18, Milton Friedman’s view is yes)(Royal Wedding Part 16)

Deadly Tornadoes Slam Into Alabama

Storm death toll jumps to 178 in the South
Concrete steps lead to remains of a tornado demolished mobile home in Preston, Miss., Wednesday, April 27, 2011. The home and one next to it were blown about 100 feet away into a cow pasture. Three related women died at the site. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
Slow Motion Footage of tornado hitting a building 4 27 11 – Tuscaloosa AL

 

The Associated Press reported this morning:

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — The death toll from severe storms that punished five Southern U.S. states has jumped to 178 after Alabama sharply raised its tally of lives lost.

Alabama’s state emergency management agency said early Thursday it had confirmed 128 deaths, up from at least 61 earlier.

Mississippi officials reported 32 dead in that state and Tennessee raised its report to six from one.

Another 11 have been killed in Georgia and one in Virginia.

The fierce storms Wednesday spawned tornadoes and winds that wiped out homes and businesses, forced a nuclear power plant to use backup generators and even prompted the evacuation of a National Weather Service office.

 Milton Friedman on Phil Donahue Show in 1980 provides a direct and to-the-point defense of capitalism and free trade. He explains how governmental regulations, no matter how well-intended, are inevitably infiltrated by business interests which use governmental power to stifle competition

Photo detail

Steve Brawner in his article “Safer roads and balanced budgets,” Arkansas News Bureau, April 13, 2011, noted:

The disagreement is over the solutions — on what spending to cut; what taxes to raise (basically none ever, according to Boozman); whether or not to enact a balanced budget amendment (Boozman says yes; Pryor no); and on what policies would promote the kind of economic growth that would make this a little easier.

In Feb of 1983 Milton Friedman wrote the article “Washington:Less Red Ink (An argument that the balanced-budget amendent would be a rare merging of public and private interests),” and here is a portion of that article:

Here, for their consideration, are my answers to the principal objections to the proposed amendment that I have come across, other than those that arise from a desire to have a still-bigger government: 

**4. The amendment is unduly rigid because it requires an annually balanced budget.** 

This is a misconception. Section 1 of the amendment prohibits a planned budget deficit unless it is explicitly approved by three fifths of the members of the House and Senate. It further requires the Congress and the President to “ensure that actual outlays do not exceed the outlays set forth in [the budget] statement.” But it does not require that actual receipts equal or exceed statement receipts. A deficit that emerged because a recession produced a reduction in tax receipts would not be in violation of the amendment, provided that outlays were no greater than statement outlays. This is a sensible arrangement: outlays can be controlled more readily over short periods than receipts. 

I have never been willing to support an amendment calling for an annually balanced budget. I do support this one, because it has the necessary flexibility.

__________________________________

Kate Middleton awards a medal to a young athlete during a visit to Witton Country Park in Darwen, northwest England, on April 11, 2011.

 

[ A report by Paul Harrison, royal correspondent Sky Television UK]

Two official photographs of Prince William together with Kate Middleton have been released to mark the couple’s engagement.

The two portraits – one formal, the other informal – were taken by celebrity photographer Mario Testino just days after their engagement was announced.

Testino, a favourite with Royals including the late Diana, Princess of Wales, has described how happy he found the couple to be.

“I am very happy to have been asked to cover this historic moment that the whole world was waiting for,” he said.

“They are in their prime and brimming with happiness – I have never felt so much joy as when I see them together.”

William asked Mario Testino to take these photographs because he loved the way he was able to bring out the exuberance and warmth of Diana in the photos he took just weeks before she died

The photographs – both taken at St James’ Palace – show the two sides of the soon-to-wed future King and Queen.

The formal shot, taken against a backdrop of paintings of former monarchs in the Palace’s Council Chamber, sees the couple in a half-embrace.

The Prince’s fiancee rests her hand on her husband-to-be’s arm, showing off her engagement ring, which once belonged to William’s mother, Diana.

The sapphire is given maximum exposure in the relaxed pose too, taken in the Palace’s Cornwall room.

Clearly at ease, heads touching, a casually dressed Prince William envelopes his future bride in his arms – while her hand rests on his chest.

It is a photo which will become one of the iconic images of the 21 century, chosen from several sent to Clarence house by the famous photographer.

Royal writer and photographer Ian Lloyd believes the couple chose Mario Testino because of his ability to make his subjects come alive, as he did with Diana.

“William asked Mario Testino to take these photographs because he loved the way he was able to bring out the exuberance and warmth of Diana in the photos he took just weeks before she died,” Mr Lloyd explained.

“And you can see he’s managed to bring that out in the Prince and his financee too.”

In both photos Kate is wearing items bought from high street stores: A white dress from Reiss and a cream blouse from Whistles.

Just as her blue dress sold old within days of wearing it on the day their engagement was announced, observers expect little different from her latest choices.

But the item people really want to know about is the dress she’ll be wearing on April 29th.

___________________________________

Kate Middleton arrives with fiance Prince William (not pictured) at the official opening of Darwen Aldridge Community Academy on April 11, 2011, in Darwen, northwest England.

 

As the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton nears, Mark Phillips reports on some of the chosen few who will attend the royal ceremony at Westminster Abbey.

Senator Pryor asks for Spending Cut Suggestions! Here are a few!(Part 29)(Royal Wedding Part 15)

Senator Mark Pryor wants our ideas on how to cut federal spending. Take a look at this video clip below:

Bradley R. Gitz wrote an excellent article about lawmakers that are not taking the debt serious. Here is a portion of the article “Heads in the sand,” Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, April 24, 2011:

    With those grand hopes now crushed by hard budget realities, the embittered response to our budget crisis on the left is to deny that it even exists, or to claim that it is of such modest nature that it can be taken care of by raising taxes on “the rich” only—a proposition which no reputable economist agrees with. 
    There is simply no serious discussion taking place at present on the left about how to prevent a looming national financial collapse. There is nodebate because there are no conceptual categories or even terminology in such quarters for dealing with such problems, only a mindset that says government must always do and spend more (which is, of course, precisely the mindset that brought us to our current impasse). 
    Liberals cannot work in a bipartisan manner with Republicans to cut spending because it would mean abandoning their rationale for political existence. There are no takers for the Founders’ idea of “limited government” any longer among Democrats, only a powerful addiction that requires fixes in the form of new government programs and functions.
    The problem isn’t just that Democrats aren’t serious about the budget deficit. It is that they refuse to allow anyone else to be. Those proposing even modest budget cuts are said to be waging “war” on (take your pick) the poor, women, minorities, children, homosexuals, and the elderly, not to mention the environment and education and whatever else can be added to enhance the hysteria level. 
    The real issue here, then, isn’t liberal demagoguery. That can always be expected. Rather, it is whether, as Democrats are betting, the American people are so dumb it will work. 
    —–––––
•–––––— 
    Free-lance columnist Bradley R. Gitz, who lives and teaches in Batesville, received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Illinois.

Senator Pryor has asked us to send our ideas to him at cutspending@pryor.senate.gov and I have done so in the past and will continue to do so in the future. Here are a few more I just emailed to him myself at 8pm CST on April 27, 2011. 

In my past posts I could have been accused of giving just general ideas of where to cut. Now I am starting in with specifics that are taken from the article “Federal Spending by the numbers, Heritage Foundation, June 1, 2010 by Brian Riedl. He notes:

  • Congress recently gave Alaska Airlines $500,000 to paint a Chinook salmon on a Boeing 737.
  • The Transportation Department will subsidize up to $2,000 per flight for direct flights between Washington, D.C., and the small hometown of Congressman Hal Rogers (R–KY)—but only on Monday mornings and Friday evenings, when lawmakers, staff, and lobbyists usually fly. Rogers is a member of the Appropriations Committee, which writes the Transportation Department’s budget.
  • Washington has spent $3 billion re-sanding beaches—even as this new sand washes back into the ocean.
  • The Defense Department wasted $100 million on unused flight tickets and never bothered to collect refunds even though the tickets were refundable.
  • _____________________________________

  •  Kate Middleton shakes hands with well-wishers following a visit with fiance Prince William to Darwen Aldridge Community Academy in Darwen, northwest England, April 11, 2011.

    Kate Middleton

    Kate Middleton was filmed doing some pre-wedding shopping at bargain stores in London. Royal watcher Victoria Arbiter dishes on the latest wedding details.

John Fund’s talk in Little Rock 4-27-11(Part 1):Carter, Clinton and Obama all governed from left when first elected (Royal Wedding Part 14)

Today I got to attend the first ever “Conservative Lunch Series” presented by  KARN and Americans for Prosperity Foundation at the Little Rock Hilton on University Avenue. This monthly luncheon will be held the fourth Wednesday of every month. The speaker for today’s luncheon was John Fund.
John Fund writes the weekly “On the Trail” column for OpinionJournal.com. He is author of “Stealing Elections: How Voter Fraud Threatens Our Democracy” (Encounter, 2004).

He joined The Wall Street Journal as a deputy editorial features editor in 1984 and was a member of the editorial board from 1995 through 2001. The articles he has written have appeared in Esquire, Reader’s Digest, Reason, The New Republic, and National Review. He became an editorial page writer specializing in politics and government in October 1986 and was a member of the Journal’s editorial board from 1995 through 2001. Next month’s guest speaker will be Andrew Breitbart.

First, we got to hear from Dave Elswick of KARN   who came up with the idea of this luncheon, and then from Teresa Crossland of Americans for Prosperity. After listening to their inspiring short talks I had determined in my heart that I was going to get the word out about these luncheons to all my conservative friends who want to know what is going on politically in Washington and in our beloved Arkansas.

John Fund touched on several subjects but the one that caught my interest the most is the observation that he made about the behavior of three Democrat Presidents: Jimmy Carter (elected in 1976), Bill Clinton (elected 1992) and Barack Obama (elected 2008).

Fund mentioned a meeting that Ronald Reagan had with his former campaign advisors shortly after Jimmy Carter was elected in 1976. In that speech Reagan told them that Democrats can’t get their way unless a couple of things happen. First, Republicans forsake their values and join them. Unfortunately, Richard Nixon had done that just a few years earlier. Second, liberals have to be smart enough to run a candidate that will appear to govern from the middle. However, Reagan told his campaign workers that sure enough the only problem for that Democrat that gets elected President is that he will be required by the liberals in Congress to govern from the left and that is a prescription for disaster every time. Whenever and wherever liberalism has been tried, it has always failed.

Fund said sure enough 3 years later President Carter had brought on the USA 21% interest rates, 12% inflation and 10% unemployment and Reagan’s slogan was:

“Recession is when your neighbor loses his job. Depression is when you lose yours. And recovery is when Jimmy Carter loses his.”

Fund went down the events surrounding Presidents Carter, Clinton and Obama and drew comparisons. It was amazing to listen to the insights that Reagan had in 1976 and how these events happened over and over.

Not only did Jimmy Carter scare the public with his liberal policies, but the first thing Bill Clinton did when he was elected was scare the public with his “Hillarycare” healthcare bill and the result was the landslide victory for Republicans in 1994. The same could be said for President Obama in 2010!!!!

Fund noted that the Republicans have a refreshing group of candidates  that will be running in the Republican Primary this time around. He did call Donald Trump an entertainer that will drop out and not run. He also said that Romney, Tim Pawlenty, Mitch Daniels (Tolbert says Daniels will decide shortly if he will run) and several other candidates had a good chance to win. I was wondering if he would give more names and possibly comment on former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, but he didn”t.

Today Jason Tolbert reported:

Someone a lot more in the know than me floats another theory. According to the scuttlebutt, Barbour’s exit yesterday has begun to tip the scales in favor of Huckabee pulling the trigger on jumping into the race but it has also changed his way of thinking.

Max Brantley of the Arkansas Times thinks Huckabee will run while Steve Brawner in his most article thinks Huckabee will not run. 

Fund noted that this year will be different than the past because we will have fresh blood in the race. Fund observed, “Republicans have had a Bush, Nixon, or Dole on the ticket every election since 1948 except one (1964).”

How do the Republicans and Democrats go about picking their presidential candidates. Fund asserted,The republicans have a shallow gene pool, but the democrats are like kids on blind dates that keep falling in love. They fell in love with Carter, Kerry, Dukakis, and now Obama.”

Last month Fund spoke to the Texas Tea Party Patriots Pac and there he also talked about how the Democrats and Republicans choose their candidates. The website “Texas for 56” reported:

The Democrats use a “Blind date” method of selecting the Presidential candidate.   Who is popular?  Who has the charisma?   They look at everyone, find someone interesting, and decide to “try them out”.  After they are elected, everyone gets to know  who they are and what they stand for as a President.  There were a lot of chuckles when this theory was disclosed.  Mr. Fund went on to prove his point by a brief review of some candidates in the last century.  There did seem to be a preponderance of evidence to prove the point.

What about the Republicans?   Who is next in line? There is a definite pattern of behavior from 1948 through 2008.  They tend to nominate whoever has been around a while. 

Mr Fund did take time to sign copies of his book and I briefly got to visit with him when I was getting a copy signed. I told him that I blogged about him this week (yesterday and the day before ) and he asked my site. Instead of telling him to type in www.HaltingArkansasLiberalswithTruth.com , I told him to google “Milton Friedman Arkansas” and my website would come up a lot since I have a lot of Friedman video clips and quotes on my blog.

Next month’s guest is Andrew Breitbart and the luncheon will be held on Wednesday May 25th. This is the first in a series of posts that I will be making over the next few days on the things that I learned at today’s luncheon. I want to encourage everyone to check out next month’s luncheon.

Andrew Breitbart

Andrew Breitbart is publisher of the news portals Breitbart.com and Breitbart.tv, and BigHollywood.com. Andrew co-wrote the best-selling attack on celebrity culture, Hollywood, Interrupted and was the primary developer for The Huffington Post.

John Fund

John Fund is a columnist for The Wall Street Journal and its OpinionJournal.com and an on-air contributor to 24-hour cable news networks CNBC and MSNBC. He is the author of several best selling books.

David Boaz of CATO joins John to discuss the massive impact of Milton Friedman on America and the world.

___________________________________________

He was interviewed by Alice, a ten year old cancer patient
Kate Middleton visits the Youth Action Northern Ireland center in Belfast, Northern Ireland, on March 8, 2011.
_______________________________________________
Kate Middleton arrives with fiance Prince William (not pictured) at the official opening of Darwen Aldridge Community Academy on April 11, 2011, in Darwen, northwest England.
KATE MIDDLETON The Girl Who Would Be Paparazzi Queen

Out: Barack and Michelle Obama

The queen sent gold-embossed invitations to 40 heads of state, but not to President Obama or first lady Michelle. The Obamas will get an official state visit in May, however, the first of its kind since 2003. It was suggested that the state visit is compensation for the missing wedding invitation—all because of the extra security costs involved with protecting the president.

Senator Pryor asks for Spending Cut Suggestions! Here are a few!(Part 28)(Royal Wedding Part 13)

Senator Mark Pryor wants our ideas on how to cut federal spending. Take a look at this video clip below:

Bradley R. Gitz wrote an excellent article about lawmakers that are not taking the debt serious. Here is a portion of the article “Heads in the sand,” Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, April 24, 2011:

____________________________________
    When Ryan put forth his long-term budget proposals, there was still some hope that the other side would join the conversation by offering its own plan. What the president offered instead in his recent speech at George Washington University was a shameless campaign document accusing the GOP of wanting to throw granny into the snow and starve little kids. 
    Ryan and Republicans had to have known this was coming. After all, by presenting a clear plan to reduce our gaping deficit and reform our unsustainable entitlement programs, they were striking at the heart of the Democratic empire. Democrats don’t do budget cuts and they don’t do tax reform, even if both have become necessary for the very survival of the welfare state they cherish. 
    Apart from the inherent ideological revulsion on the left to any reform that entails government spending less than before are also the consequences of dashed expectations. When Barack Obama was elected president, the assumption was that he would dramatically expand the role and size of government by creating a third installment of the New Deal (LBJ’s Great Society in the 1960s having been the second). There was no talk of reforming entitlements or of the structural insolvency of already existing social programs; rather, the focus was almost entirely upon all those new “investments” that would flesh out a new progressive era of American governance. 

•–––––— 
    Free-lance columnist Bradley R. Gitz, who lives and teaches in Batesville, received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Illinois.

Senator Pryor has asked us to send our ideas to him at cutspending@pryor.senate.gov and I have done so in the past and will continue to do so in the future. Here are a few more I just emailed to him myself at 9:16 am CST on April 27, 2011.

In my past posts I could have been accused of giving just general ideas of where to cut. Now I am starting in with specifics that are taken from the article “Federal Spending by the numbers, Heritage Foundation, June 1, 2010 by Brian Riedl. He notes:

  • A GAO audit found that 95 Pentagon weapons systems suffered from a combined $295 billion in cost overruns.
  • The refusal of many federal employees to fly coach costs taxpayers $146 million annually in flight upgrades.
  • Washington spent $126 million in 2009 on projects associated with the Kennedy family legacy in Massachusetts. Additionally, Senator John Kerry (D–MA) diverted $20 million from the 2010 defense budget to subsidize a new Edward M. Kennedy Institute.
  • The federal government owns more than 50,000 vacant homes.
  • The Federal Communications Commission spent $350,000 to sponsor NASCAR driver David Gilliland.
  • Members of Congress have spent hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars supplying their offices with popcorn machines, plasma televisions, DVD equipment, ionic air fresheners, camcorders, and signature machines—plus $24,730 leasing a Lexus, $1,434 on a digital camera, and $84,000 on personalized calendars.
  • More than $13 billion in Iraq aid has been classified as wasted or stolen. Another $7.8 billion cannot be accounted for.
  • ___________________________________
  • Britain’s Prince William and Prince Harry talked about their potential future roles in the Royal Air Force. (June 18)
     
    Kate Middleton arrives at City Hall on March 8, 2011, in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

     
    __________________________________________________
     
    Prince William gives a rare interview. Prince William of Wales (William Arthur Philip Louis; born 21st June 1982), KG, is the elder son of Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, and the late Diana, Princess of Wales, and grandson of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. As such, he is second in the line of succession to 16 independent states, although he is resident and most directly involved with the United Kingdom, the oldest realm. PUBLIC COMAIN News item
     
    Britain’s Prince William watches, as Kate Middleton flips a pancake at a display by the charity Northern Ireland Cancer Fund for Children, outside the City Hall in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Tuesday, March 8, 2011.

    __________________________________________
    He was interviewed by Alice, a ten year old cancer patient
    Kate Middleton, fiancee of Britain’s Prince William, meets the public after a visit to Belfast City Hall in Belfast, Northern Ireland, on March 8, 2011.

     
    ___________________________________________

Balanced Budget Amendment the answer? Boozman says yes, Pryor no (Part 17, Milton Friedman’s view is yes)(Royal Wedding Part 12)

Milton Friedman on Phil Donahue Show in 1980 provides a direct and to-the-point defense of capitalism and free trade. He explains how governmental regulations, no matter how well-intended, are inevitably infiltrated by business interests which use governmental power to stifle competition.

Photo detail

Steve Brawner in his article “Safer roads and balanced budgets,” Arkansas News Bureau, April 13, 2011, noted:

The disagreement is over the solutions — on what spending to cut; what taxes to raise (basically none ever, according to Boozman); whether or not to enact a balanced budget amendment (Boozman says yes; Pryor no); and on what policies would promote the kind of economic growth that would make this a little easier.

In Feb of 1983 Milton Friedman wrote the article “Washington:Less Red Ink (An argument that the balanced-budget amendent would be a rare merging of public and private interests),” and here is a portion of that article:

Here, for their consideration, are my answers to the principal objections to the proposed amendment that I have come across, other than those that arise from a desire to have a still-bigger government: 

**3. The amendment is substantive, not procedural and the Constitution should be limited to procedural matters. The fate of the Prohibition amendment is a cautionary tale that should give us pause in enacting substantive amendments.** 

If this amendment is substantive, so is the income-tax (sixteenth) amendment and so are many specific provisions of the Constitution. The income-tax amendment does not specify the rate of tax. It leaves that to Congress. Similarly, this amendment does not specify the size of the budget. It simply outlines a procedure for approving it: the same as now exists if total legislated outlays do not exceed an amount determined by prior events (the prior budget and the prior growth in national income); and by a majority of 60 percent if total legislated outlays do exceed that amount. The requirement of a supernormal majority is neither substantive nor undemocratic nor unprecedented. Witness the two-thirds majority necessary to override a presidential veto or to approve a treaty. 

The prohibition amendment was incompatible with the basic aim of the Constitution, because it was not directed at limiting government. On the contrary, it limited the people and freed government to control them. The balanced-budget-tax-limitation amendment is thoroughly compatible with the basic role of the Constitution, because it seeks to improve the ability of the public to limit government.

____________________________________

 

At a Fashion Show

The Princess of Wales arrives at the Guildhall in London for a fashion show, November 1982. She is wearing a blue dress by Bruce Oldfield. She is accompanied by her lady-in-waiting Anne Beckwith-Smith. (Photo by Jayne Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images)

 

Lady Diana and Prince Charles.

JULY 26, 1981: The glass coach of Lady Diana Spencer's bridal procession is seen during the "outside rehearsal" of the Royal wedding in London.

 

Associated Press

JULY 26, 1981: The glass coach of Lady Diana Spencer’s bridal procession is seen during the “outside rehearsal” of the Royal wedding in London.

 

Prince William speaks of his mother
 
 
Kate Middleton and Britain’s Prince William smile as they visit Trearddur Bay Lifeboat Station on the island of Anglesey, Wales, Feb. 24, 2011.

 
_________________________________________________
 
Find out how William pays tribute to his mother during an interview with Ben Fogle in Africa for Sky One.
Kate Middleton, fiancee to Britain’s Prince William, is seen as they visit Trearddur Bay Lifeboat Station for a Naming ceremony and Service dedication for the Royal National Lifeboat Instution’s (RNLI) new Atlantic 85 Lifeboat, “Hereford Endeavour,” on the island of Anglesey, Wales, Feb. 24, 2011.

____________________________

Senator Pryor asks for Spending Cut Suggestions! Here are a few!(Part 27)(Royal Wedding Part 11)

Another tough night of storms and tornadoes but no one was killed. On Monday night in Arkansas eight people were killed. I did hear that three 18 wheeler trucks were turned over by the wind though.

Senator Mark Pryor wants our ideas on how to cut federal spending. Take a look at this video clip below:

Senator Pryor has asked us to send our ideas to him at cutspending@pryor.senate.gov and I have done so in the past and will continue to do so in the future. Here are a few more I just emailed to him myself at 6:59 am CST on April 27, 2011.

Bradley R. Gitz wrote an excellent article about lawmakers that are not taking the debt serious. Here is a portion of the article “Heads in the sand,” Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, April 24, 2011:

The American public seems to have finally become alert to the fact that the nation’s finances are slipping over the edge. 
    Paul Ryan’s “roadmap” has performed a useful public service in this regard. Taken together with the recommendations of the Simpson-Bowles Commission, we now have, at least on paper, a vision of how we can get out of the mess we’re in. Along these lines, the columnist Charles Krauthammer has suggested a “grand compromise” which essentially merges the ideas of Wisconsin Congressman Ryan with Simpson-Bowles by combining Ryan’s $6 trillion in cuts over the next 10 years with a nudge of the top marginal rate to 28 percent, producing a closing of the deficit gap with a federal budget at about the average post-World War II level of 20 percent of GDP. 
    Except that liberals aren’t interested, at least not in the part about cutting spending and reforming entitlements and cleaning up the tax code (which are all of a piece). What they are interested in, and displaying plenty of, beginning with President Obama himself, is demagogy. 


    Free-lance columnist Bradley R. Gitz, who lives and teaches in Batesville, received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Illinois.

In my past posts I could have been accused of giving just general ideas of where to cut. Now I am starting in with specifics that are taken from the article “Federal Spending by the numbers, Heritage Foundation, June 1, 2010 by Brian Riedl. He notes:

  • The State Department will spend $450,000 on art shows in Venice, Italy.
  • During a recent three-day conference, NASA spent $62,611 on “light refreshments” for its 317 attendees—$66 per day per person. NASA officials said such expensive snacks were needed to keep its officials from wandering away from the conference.
  • NASA spent $500 million constructing a 355-foot steel tower to launch a rocket that is now unlikely to ever be built.
  • The Congressional Research Service has confirmed that the new health care law may subsidize Viagra and other sexual performance drugs for convicted rapists and sex offenders.
  • Federal agencies are delinquent on nearly 20 percent of employee travel charge cards, costing taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars annually.
  • The Securities and Exchange Commission spent $3.9 million rearranging desks and offices at its Washington, D.C., headquarters.
  • Over half of all farm subsidies go to commercial farms, which report average household incomes of $200,000.
  • ___________________________________
  • Light Blue Dress

    The Princess of Wales arrives at St David’s Hall in Cardiff, for a charity concert, October 1982. She wears a gown by the Emmanuels. (Photo by Jayne Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images)

    Part 8

    JULY 29, 1981: Prince Charles looks at his beaming bride, the Princess of Wales, at the top of St. Paul's Cathedral steps after their marriage in London July 29, 1981.
    Associated Press

    JULY 29, 1981: Prince Charles looks at his beaming bride, the Princess of Wales, at the top of St. Paul’s Cathedral steps after their marriage in London July 29, 1981.

Ronald Wilson Reagan (Part 79) ( 1981 Orsini McArthur murder case Part 4)


Above: The Reagans at the White House in 1985. Photo taken by Harry Benson

Second Reagan-Mondale presidential debate 1984 #2

Oct 21, 1984 Debate between President Reagan v Walter Mondale

MS. GEYER: Mr. President, in the last few months it has seemed more and more that your policies in Central America were beginning to work. Yet, just at this moment, we are confronted with the extraordinary story of a CIA guerrilla manual for the anti-Sandinista contras whom we are backing, which advocates not only assassinations of Sandinistas but the hiring of criminals to assassinate the guerrillas we are supporting in order to create martyrs. Is this not, in effect, our own state-supported terrorism?

THE PRESIDENT: No, but I’m glad you asked that question, because I know it’s on many peoples’ minds. I have ordered an investigation. I know that the CIA is already going forward with one. We have a gentleman down in Nicaragua who is on contract to the CIA, advising — supposedly on military tactics — the contras. And he drew up this manual. It was turned over to the agency head of the CIA in Nicaragua to be printed. And a number of pages were excised by that agency head there, the man in charge, and he sent it on up here to CIA, where more pages were excised before it was printed. But some way or other, there were 12 of the original copies that got out down there and were not submitted for this printing process by the CIA.

Now, those are the details as we have them. And as soon as we have an investigation and find out where any blame lies for the few that did not get excised or changed, we certainly are going to do something about that. We’ll take the proper action at the proper time.

I was very interested to hear about Central America and our process down there, and I thought for a moment that instead of a debate I was going to find Mr. Mondale in complete agreement with what we’re doing, because the plan that he has outlined is the one we’ve been following for quite some time, including diplomatic processes throughout Central America and working closely with the Contadora group.

So, I can only tell you about the manual — that we’re not in the habit of assigning guilt before there has been proper evidence produced and proof of that guilt. But if guilt is established, whoever is guilty we will treat with that situation then, and they will be removed.

MS. GEYER: Well, Mr. President, you are implying then that the CIA in Nicaragua is directing the contras there. I’d also like to ask whether having the CIA investigate its own manual in such a sensitive area is not sort of like sending the fox into the chicken coop a second time?

THE PRESIDENT: I’m afraid I misspoke when I said a CIA head in Nicaragua. There’s not someone there directing all of this activity. There are, as you know, CIA men stationed in other countries in the world and, certainly, in Central America. And so it was a man down there in that area that this was delivered to, and he recognized that what was in that manual was in direct contravention of my own Executive order, in December of 1981, that we would have nothing to do with regard to political assassinations.

MR. NEWMAN: Mr. Mondale, your rebuttal.

MR. MONDALE: What is a President charged with doing when he takes his oath of office? He raises his right hand and takes an oath of office to take care to faithfully execute the laws of the land. A President can’t know everything, but a President has to know those things that are essential to his leadership and the enforcement of our laws.

This manual — several thousands of which were produced — was distributed, ordering political assassinations, hiring of criminals, and other forms of terrorism. Some of it was excised, but the part dealing with political terrorism was continued. How can this happen? How can something this serious occur in an administration and have a President of the United States in a situation like this say he didn’t know? A President must know these things. I don’t know which is worse, not knowing or knowing and not stopping it.

And what about the mining of the harbors in Nicaragua which violated international law? This has hurt this country, and a President’s supposed to command.

MR. NEWMAN: Mr. President, your rebuttal.

THE PRESIDENT: Yes. I have so many things there to respond to, I’m going to pick out something you said earlier. You’ve been all over the country repeating something that, I will admit, the press has also been repeating — that I believed that nuclear missiles could be fired and then called back. I never, ever conceived of such a thing. I never said any such thing.

In a discussion of our strategic arms negotiations, I said that submarines carrying missiles and airplanes carrying missiles were more conventional-type weapons, not as destabilizing as the land-based missiles, and that they were also weapons that — or carriers — that if they were sent out and there was a change, you could call them back before they had launched their missiles.

But I hope that from here on you will no longer be saying that particular thing, which is absolutely false. How anyone could think that any sane person would believe you could call back a nuclear missile, I think is as ridiculous as the whole concept has been. So, thank you for giving me a chance to straighten the record. I’m sure that you appreciate that. [Laughter]

It has been 150 years since the beginning of the Civil War that started in April of 1861 at Ft Sumter.

https://i0.wp.com/www.bourlandcivilwar.com/erathc1.gif

Civil War Veterans’ 1924 Reunion

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Stephenville, Erath County, Texas

This July 11, 1924 photo of Civil War veterans taken at the north entrance to the Erath County Courthouse by Stephenville’s famous photographer, Baxley.    Please send the military unit/s in which each of the following soldiers served, along with their vital data, i.e. full name, birth and death years and counties, and marriage data.
Numbered men in photograph:   (1) Dr. J.B. McGauhy;   (2) J.C. Wright;   (3) J.A. Cherry;   (4) F.M. Marrs;   (5) W.H. Pate; (6) G.W. Ledia;   (7) W.P. Orr;   (8) John Martin;   (9) W.P. Chapman;   (10) Mac D. Reid;   (11) G.L. McIlhany;   (12) N. McLaughlin;   (13) James Collins;   (14) W.R. Wolverton;  (15) J.L. Bird;  (16) T.B. Tudor;   (17) A.L. Murphy;   (18) A.C. McAlister;   (19) J.F. Henderson;   (20) J J. Marrs;   (21) J.A. Buntin;   (22) — Bassett;   (23) Mack Wilson;   ***(24) J.A. Shelton; (25) J. Matt Roberson; (26) __.    This 1924 listing is alphabetized below the photo that can be enlarged by clicking on photo then clicking on the 2nd photo’s arrows in the lower right corner.

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Widow’s Web by Gene Lyons (August 1993)

By

Kim Cantrell

June 2, 2010Posted in: Books, Reviews

Widows Web by Gene Lyons
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Oh, What A Tangled Web She Weaved
Review by Kim Cantrell

On March 12, 1982, Ron Orsini was murdered in his home while he lay sleeping in his bed.

His widow, Mary Lee, and her 13-year-old daughter swore they never heard anyone inside the home or the sound of gunfire.

Although it was suspected and despite intense investigations, police were unable to prove that Mary Lee had murdered Ron.

And that should have been the end of the story.

But it wasn’t.

For the next two years, Mary Lee Orsini made wild claims about shadowy figures breaking into her home, chasing her in rural parts of North Little Rock, and of an underworld conspiracy that included many members of law enforcement.

And then Mary Lee’s attorney – who had represented her during the grand jury hearing in the matter of Ron’s death – came home to find his wife had been fatally shot.

Mary Lee’s claim was that it was part of a conspiracy.

But this time even the Pulaski County’s Sheriff’s testimony in her favor couldn’t save her.

Author Gene Lyons manages to relay the in a clear, comprehensive manner a story that if described as complicated would be an understatement.

Full of twist and turns, ups and downs, Widow’s Web is a most definitely edge-of-seat thriller; a real-life, honest-to-God story.

Heard that old saying, “You can’t make this stuff up?” That definitely applies to Mary Lee Orsini.

If you haven’t yet read Widow’s Web, you must put this one you list. You’re missing one heck of a story if you don’t!

Other Books About Mary Lee Orsini: Murder In Little Rock by Jan Meins.

Movies: Seduction In Travis County, a made-for-television movie which aired in 1991 on CBS (USA). Sold on VHS only under the title Blind Judgement

Updates on Mary Lee Orsini and Others:

On August 11, 2003, Mary Lee Orsini died of a heart attack at Newport, Arkansas, hopsital near the McPherson Unit where she was serving her life sentence. She was 55-years-old.

Just three weeks before her death, Mary Lee confessed to investigators that she had killed Ron. She also told them that she was involved in an affair with Bill McArthur but he had no knowledge of her plans to kill his wife, Alice.

Euguene “Yankee” Hall continues to serve a life sentence at the Cummins Unit in Grady, Arkansas.

On October 2, 2009, Bill McArthur died at the age of 71.

Sheriff Tommy Robinson served one term as a U.S. Congressman. Following the end of his political career, Robinson has piddled as owner of a couple of businesses; eventually winding in bankruptcy. Refusing to comply with bankruptcy proceedings, Robinson was ordered to jail in 2008 for contempt.

Updates on Tiffany Orsini, who would now be 41-years-old, could not be located.

Senator Pryor asks for Spending Cut Suggestions! Here are a few!(Part 26)(Royal Wedding Part 10)

Another bad group of tornadoes heading to Central Arkansas tonight. Yesterday eight people were killed in Arkansas.

Senator Mark Pryor wants our ideas on how to cut federal spending. Take a look at this video clip below:

Spendthrift politicians and runaway spending. Is a balanced budget amendment the answer? Professor Williams looks at the situation. (He argues for law banning spending over certain limit of GDP, not for the balanced budget amendment.)

Wall Street Journal columnist and FOX News contributor John Fund talks to the Mackinac Center for Public Policy about the 2010 elections and their implications in Michigan as well as the evolution and impact of Alternative/New Media on the political landscape in Michigan and beyond.

Mark Pryor may have seen the light concerning cutting federal spending, but I still have my doubts because I know he is still very close to all those liberal Democrats. Sometime I wonder why the Democrats can not see the light concerning the need to cut spending and attack the huge federal debt. Below is a portion of an article by John Fund of the Wall Street Journal that was published on April 20, 2011:

About That Speech

Mr. Obama’s budget speech makes more sense when one realizes that his sinking poll numbers indicate an erosion in support with his liberal base.

 At first glance, President Obama’s partisan speech last week attacking GOP budget proposals was precisely what an incumbent running for re-election shouldn’t do. It was not a speech designed to appeal to independent voters, a group Mr. Obama has suffered serious erosion with.

But Mr. Obama’s tone makes more sense when one realizes that his sinking poll numbers also indicate an erosion in support with his liberal base. 

The more that Mr. Obama feels he has to haul out class-warfare rhetoric and avoid offering serious proposals to stave off a fiscal crisis, the more he is endangering his standing with independent voters who remain unsettled by a sluggish recovery. The latest Gallup Poll pegs Mr. Obama’s support among independents at just 35%. Right now, Mr. Obama is more concerned with shoring up his liberal base than with wooing independents. That’s a sign of weakness.

Wall Street Journal columnist John Fund speaks to Americans for Prosperity Illinois, Part 3


Senator Pryor has asked us to send our ideas to him at cutspending@pryor.senate.gov and I have done so in the past and will continue to do so in the future. Here are a few more I just emailed to him myself at 3:57 pm CST on April 26, 2011.

In my past posts I could have been accused of giving just general ideas of where to cut. Now I am starting in with specifics that are taken from the article “Federal Spending by the numbers, Heritage Foundation, June 1, 2010 by Brian Riedl. He notes:

  • The Legal Services Corporation, which is supposed to provide legal services to the poor, has repeatedly ignored warnings to stop spending its money on alcohol. It also funds limousines, first-class airfare, and “death by Chocolate” pastries for its executives.
  • The Department of Energy spent nine years and $153 million on an obsolete cyber-security project that was supposed to safeguard America’s nuclear weapons information.
  • The stimulus set aside $350 million for a national broadband coverage map—even though one private firm stated it could create one for $3.5 million.
  • Fannie Mae—now backed up by taxpayers—paid $6.3 million in legal defense costs for ousted executives such as Franklin Raines. An additional $16.8 million was spent defending Fannie Mae’s regulators in litigation against the former executives.
  • The Census Bureau spent $2.5 million on Super Bowl ads, and on-air mentions by sportscasters.
  • New documents reveal that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) lost 1,000 computers in 2008. Not to be outdone, Homeland Security officers lost nearly 200 guns in places like restaurant restrooms, convenience stores, and bowling alleys. Several of the guns ended up in the hands of criminals.
  • ______________________________________
  •  

    Attending a Wedding

    Princess Diana wearing a pink outfit at the wedding of her former flatmate Carolyn Pride and William Bartholomew, London, September 1982. (Photo by Jayne Fincher/Getty Images)

    Part 7

    JULY 29, 1981: Prince Charles kisses his bride's hand on the balcony of Buckingham Palace in London July 29, 1981.

    Associated Press

    JULY 29, 1981: Prince Charles kisses his bride’s hand on the balcony of Buckingham Palace in London July 29, 1981.

    __________________________________________

Balanced Budget Amendment the answer? Boozman says yes, Pryor no (Part 16, Milton Friedman’s view is yes)(Royal Wedding Part 9)

Last night here in Arkansas we had tornadoes.

Take a look at this video from last week in the St. Louis Airport:

Milton Friedman on Phil Donahue Show in 1980 provides a direct and to-the-point defense of capitalism and free trade. He explains how governmental regulations, no matter how well-intended, are inevitably infiltrated by business interests which use governmental power to stifle competition.

Photo detail

Steve Brawner in his article “Safer roads and balanced budgets,” Arkansas News Bureau, April 13, 2011, noted:

The disagreement is over the solutions — on what spending to cut; what taxes to raise (basically none ever, according to Boozman); whether or not to enact a balanced budget amendment (Boozman says yes; Pryor no); and on what policies would promote the kind of economic growth that would make this a little easier.

Senator Pryor and  Congressman Mike Ross are the only surviving Democrats in  Washington from Arkansas. Mike Ross supports the Balanced Budget Amendment. Human Events reported:

The House passed a Balanced Budget Amendment in 1995 as part of the “Contract for America.”  As mentioned, the BBA failed in the Senate in 1997 by one vote.

Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R.-Va.) reintroduced that same BBA from 1995 at the beginning of this year as HJ Res 2, which was referred to the Judiciary Committee.  The bill has 215 co-sponsors, including 13 Democrats: Jason Altmire (Pa.), Sanford Bishop (Ga.), Dan Boren (Okla.), Leonard Boswell (Iowa), Jim Cooper (Tenn.), Henry Cuellar (Tex.), Peter DeFazio (Ore.), Jane Harman (Calif.), Jim Matheson (Utah), Mike McIntyre (N.C.), Collin Peterson (Minn.), Mike Ross (Ark.), and David Scott (Ga.).

There is no doubt that Ross is more conservative than Pryor, but he is also has been targeted by the Republicans. Jason Tolbert reported today:

The National Republican Congressional Committee has a radio ad out today hitting Congressman Mike Ross for his votes against all five budget proposals.

In Feb of 1983 Milton Friedman wrote the article “Washington:Less Red Ink (An argument that the balanced-budget amendent would be a rare merging of public and private interests),” and here is a portion of that article:

Here, for their consideration, are my answers to the principal objections to the proposed amendment that I have come across, other than those that arise from a desire to have a still-bigger government: 

**2. The President and Congress are guilty of hypocrisy in voting simultaneously for a large current deficit and for a constitutional amendment to prevent future deficits.** 

Of course, I have long believed that congressional hypocrisy and shortsightedness are the only reasons there is a ghost of a chance of getting Congress to pass an amendment limiting itself. Most members of Congress will do anything to postpone the problems they face by a couple of years–only Wall Street has a shorter perspective. If the hypocrisy did not exist, if Congress behaved “responsibly,” there would be no need for the amendment. Congress’s irresponsibility is the reason we need an amendment and at the same time the reason that there is a chance of getting one. 

Hypocrisy may eventually lead to the passing of the amendment. But hypocrisy will not prevent the amendment from having important effects three or four years down the line–and from casting its shadow on events even earlier. Congress will not violate the Constitution lightly. Members of Congress will wriggle and squirm; they will seek, and no doubt find, subterfuges and evasions. But their actions will be significantly affected by the existence of the amendment. The experience of several states that have passed similar tax-limitation amendments provides ample evidence of that.

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Gala Recital Dress

The Princess of Wales attends a gala recital evening at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, November 1981. She is wearing a dress by Bellville Sassoon. (Photo by Jayne Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images)

 

Part 6

JULY 29, 1981: Prince Charles and his bride Diana, the new Princess of Wales, are cheered by the crowd thronging the Royal Processional route back to Buckingham Palace after their marriage in St. Paul's Cathedral.

 

Associated Press

JULY 29, 1981: Prince Charles and his bride Diana, the new Princess of Wales, are cheered by the crowd thronging the Royal Processional route back to Buckingham Palace after their marriage in St. Paul’s Cathedral.