MAXINE

"Aim at Heaven ... you get Earth thrown in - Aim at Earth and you get neither" - C.S. Lewis

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Department Of Transportation Adds To Fear Mongering Campaign

A trio of Republicans accused the Obama Administration of “creating alarm” in a quest to ramp up political pressure to deal with the sequester and suggested late Friday there were other areas of “fat” that could be cut by the FAA. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) and Reps. Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) and Frank LoBiondo (R-N.J.) said the dire warnings were not backed up by financial data and suggested the FAA could instead cut the $500 million it spends each year on consultants or the $200 million it spends on supplies and travel. Image Credit: The Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (EEE), Hong Kong

Department Of Transportation Adds To Fear Mongering Campaign

The Obama Administration's bureaucratic fear mongering campaign starts (after President Barack Obama's presentation) with Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood:

The Obama administration is heightening its warnings about looming budget cuts by emphasizing an area the traveling public already dreads - gridlock in the skies.

The White House trotted out former Republican, Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood on Friday to warn that sequestration would bring “calamity” to air travel by forcing the FAA to close dozens of control towers and eliminate overnight shifts at others, in turn prompting airlines to cancel or delay flights. Delays would be as much as 90 minutes, he said.

The FAA soon backed up his words with the release of further details about where towers could close ... from Opa-Locka, Fla., to Snohomish County, Wash.

It was further reported the cuts would also slow airport maintenance because of the thousands of furlough days that would hit the Transportation Department’s workforce of 55,000, thousands of whom are responsible for keeping the skies safe, the former Illinois congressman told reporters.

The fact of the matter is that there are NO CUTS to the amount of funding that this, and other functions of the federal government had in 2012 at $3,700 Billion dollars - the budgets will actually increase $15 Billion dollars (as opposed to about $100 Billion dollars that the "baseline budgeting" would be calling for).

What? Ray LaHood can not find any desk jockeys or paper-pushers in Washington D.C. to layoff?

Riiiiight!

We understand the fear mongering game - we just do not know which appointed Bureaucratic Secretary is next to launch its fear mongering litany of horror.

----

Labels: , , , , , , ,

Friday, February 22, 2013

Sequester And The Shameful Fear Mongering Campaign

If the heads of 20 federal agencies are to be believed, disastrous consequences await if President Obama and Congress fail to reach a budget deal, triggering the automatic, across-the-board cuts known as “sequestration.” Image Credit: David McNew/Getty Images


Sequester And The Shameful Fear Mongering Campaign

For the first time in my adult life, I am ashamed that I am a citizen of a country that is led by the political and media forces that exist today. The political leadership and the media that supports them think that WE ARE STUPID and lack the capability to resist FEAR MONGERING.

EXAMPLE: The country, if the Sequester is allowed to go forward, ... the Federal Government will only be allowed to spend fifteen billion dollars MORE that it did last year ($15, 000,000,000). This means that they could do exactly everything they did last year!

So one has to ask - WHY? … do all of these Obama and Media predicted catastrophic happenings have to happen at all?

The following article produced and published by ABC News is absolutely SHAMEFUL and I really am embarrassed to say I am a citizen of a nation that has this level of BS produced without any perspective or push-back.

Just ugly …

This excerpted and edited from ABC News (just the first 10) – 

57 Terrible Consequences of the Sequester
By CHRIS GOOD ABC News (@c_good) – Feb. 21, 2013

In separate letters to Committee Chairwoman Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., they warned of terrible things: Greater risk of wildfires, fewer OSHA inspections and a risk of more workplace deaths, 125,000 people risking homelessness with cuts to shelters and housing vouchers, neglect for mentally ill and homeless Americans who would lose services, Native Americans getting turned away from hospitals, cuts to schools on reservations and prison lockdowns. There’s also a higher risk of terrorism with surveillance limited and the FBI potentially unable to disrupt plots, closed housing projects, and 600,000 women and children thrown off WIC.

In short: Unless a budget deal is cut, the country will be in deep trouble, according to the Obama administration’s highest-ranking agency officials.
—-
With the House in recess and with Obama playing golf over the weekend, a deal does not appear imminent. More likely, sequestration will kick in for a few weeks, a deal will get done later, and the cuts will be undone, rearranged, or replaced by revenue from higher taxes. But if no deal happens, here’s what the agency heads warned will occur under a full year of budget sequestration: 

1. Air Travel Disruption

After a $600 million Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) funding cut, furloughs would mean fewer air-traffic controllers and fewer flights.

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood: “[A] vast majority of the FAA’s nearly 47,000 employees will be furloughed for approximately one day per pay period until the end of the fiscal year in September, with a maximum of two days per pay period. …

“The furlough of a large number of air traffic controllers and technicians will require a reduction in air traffic to a level that can be safely managed by the remaining staff. The result will be felt across the country, as the volume of travel must be decreased. Sequestration could slow air traffic levels in major cities, which will result in delays and disruptions across the country during the critical summer travel season. Aviation safety employees also would experience significant furloughs that will affect airlines, aviation manufacturers, and individual pilots, all of which need FAA safety approvals and certifications.”

2. Longer Security Lines at Airports

Even the Travel Security Administration (TSA) is not exempt from sequestration, and fewer workers would mean longer lines. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano: “Funding and staffing reductions will increase wait times at airports, affect security between land ports of entry, affect CBP’s [Customs and Border Patrol] ability to collect revenue owed to the Federal Government, and slow screening and entry programs for those traveling into the United States. … The Transportation Security Administration would reduce its frontline workforce, which would substantially increase passenger wait times at airport security checkpoints.”

3. Slower Extreme-Weather Forecasts

Government weathermen would feel the sequester, too. Cuts to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), which runs the National Hurricane Center and handles large-scale weather forecasting for the federal government, would mean 2,6000 furloughed employees, 2,700 unfilled positions, and 1,400 fewer contractors.

That could mean less reliable predictions of major storms, warned Deputy Commerce Secretary Rebecca M. Blank: “The government runs the risk of significantly increasing forecast error and, the government’s ability to warn Americans across the country about high impact weather events, such as hurricanes and tornadoes, will be compromised. … Significant and costly impacts to NOAA’s satellites and other observational programs are also certain. For example, sequestration will result in a 2-3 year launch delay for the first two next-generation geostationary weather satellites (currently planned to launch in 2015 and 2017), which track severe weather events such as hurricanes and tornadoes.

“This delay would increase the risk of a gap in satellite coverage and diminish the quality of weather forecasts and warnings. Sequestration will also reduce the number of flight hours for NOAA aircraft, which serve important missions such as hurricane reconnaissance and coastal surveying. NOAA will also need to curtail maintenance and operations of weather systems such as NEXRAD (the national radar network) and the Advanced Weather Interactive Processing System (used by local weather forecast offices to process and monitor weather data), which could lead to longer service outages or reduced data availability for forecasters.”

4. Greater Risk of Wildfires

Cuts to the Department of Agriculture would mean less wildfire prevention and greater risk, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack warned: “Increased risk to communities from wildfires with as much as 200,000 fewer acres treated for hazardous fuels” were among the consequences he listed in his letter to the Senate Appropriations Committee.

5. Pest-Infested Crops

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack wrote that the sequester would mean “a reduction in assistance to States for pest and disease prevention, surveillance, and response, potentially leading to more extensive outbreaks and economic losses to farmers and ranchers.”

6. Nationwide Meat and Poultry Shortage

After furloughs to the Food Safety and Inspection Service, meat and poultry plants will have to shut down, as no one will be around to inspect their products. Agriculture Secretary Vilsack warned of “a nationwide shutdown of meat and poultry plants during a furlough of inspection personnel.

The furlough could result in as much as 15 days of lost production, costing roughly over $10 billion in production losses, and industry workers would experience over $400 million in lost wages. Consumers would experience limited meat and poultry supplies, and potentially higher prices, and food safety could be compromise.”

7. Prison Lockdowns

A furlough of nearly 36,700 Bureau of Prisons staff for an average of 12 days could “endanger the safety of staff and over 218,00 inmates,” Attorney General Eric Holder wrote to the Senate Appropriations Committee on Feb. 1.

“As a consequence, BOP would need to implement full or partial lockdowns and significantly reduce inmate reentry and training programs. … This would leave inmates idle, increasing the likelihood of inmate misconduct, violence, and other risks to correctional workers and inmates. Further, eliminating inmate programs such as drug treatment and vocational education would, in fact, lead to higher cost to taxpayers in the long run.” Holder said he is “acutely concerned about staff and inmate safety should cuts of the sequestration’s magnitude hit BOP” and called it a “dangerous situation.”

8. Slower Gun Background Checks

FBI Director Robert Mueller warned in a letter to the Senate Appropriations Committee: “Timely processing and searching of National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) requests for purchases of firearms would be affected by sequestration. On average, approximately 43,500 NICS searches are performed daily. The Brady Act requires the NICS checks to be completed in three business days or the Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL) can legally transfer the firearm to a purchaser—without a final NICS determination.

“The FBI is also mandated to provide an immediate determination no less than 90 percent of the time. Delays in processing and adjudicating NICS requests increases the risk of firearms being transferred to a convicted felon or other prohibited person which, in turn, would have a significant detrimental effect on public and law enforcement safety at a time when the NICS workload is expanding.”
9. Fewer FBI Agents

FBI would furlough personnel for up to 14 days, Attorney General Eric Holder wrote: “This would have the equivalent effect of cutting approximately 2,285 onboard employees, including 775 special agents.”

10. Immigration Backlog

Unable to hire immigration judges, the federal government would see immigration applications pile up.

Holder wrote: “The sequestration would cut over $15 million from [the Executive Office for Immigration Review] EOIR’s current budget. EOIR would be forced to cease all hiring of key critical positions for EOIR’s immigration courts, including Immigration Judges, likely increasing pending caseloads to well over 350,000 (an increase of 6 percent over September 2012 levels.” EOIR would also cut contracts for interpreters, legal support, and I.T. staff.”
[Read More Here]

Again, this government will have to do with the same level of spending as last year PLUS $15, 000,000,000 added to an approximate $3,700,000,000,000 extended budget.

----

Labels: , , , , ,

Friday, February 01, 2013

Environmental Wacko NFL Super Bowl XLVII Pick

Baltimore Ravens QB Joe Flacco, shown here during the AFC Championship game on Jan. 20, will lead his team on a game-winning drive in the final two minutes of Super Bowl XLVII. Well, according to the Madden 13 simulation of the game, which has the Ravens winning by three. Image Credit: Al Bello/Getty Images

Environmental Wacko NFL Super Bowl XLVII Pick

In the time honored tradition of Rush Limbaugh and his Friday show segment that features the picking of winners in the weekend's NFL games, here is a treatment of the Super Bowl environmental wacko pick for this weekend between the NFC San Francisco 49ers versus the AFC Baltimore Ravens.

The environmental wacko picking system first looks at the team mascot or name, not the athletic prowess of each team. The next item for judgement or parsing would be location and type of same category of mascot given a progressive or liberal perception of the nature of the mascot.


This excerpted and edited from a Rush Limbaugh show transcript for Super Bowl 2009 -

The Environmentalist Wacko Pick Method Returns for the Super Bowl
 
Rush Limbaugh - January 30, 2009

"Okay, how can I combine the issues with my game picks, and ingeniously I came up with the environmentalist wacko method which would look at the games and the teams that were competing against one another that weekend from the standpoint of the wacko animal rights movement, the environmental wackos, the entire left-fringe politically correct movement. How would they choose winners? So I'm going to use the environmentalist wacko method to pick the upcoming Super Bowl on Sunday afternoon.

What do we have here? We have the Steelers versus the Cardinals. What are the Steelers? The Steelers are a huge, big, polluting business that destroyed things with filth. Their tactics have led to lung disease, global warming, and general filth, the pollution of rivers; slave labor jobs, 24/7 working in insufferable conditions at the steel mills; polluting the skies so that people had to take three shirts to work every day if the shirt was white because by noon the shirt would be gray with soot! The byproduct of the work of the Steelers, the industrialists who cared not about the environment, cared not for their city, cared not a whit for the animal life surrounding the mills.

On the other hand, who are the Cardinals? The Cardinals, they're birds! Innocent beasts of nature struggling to survive as man encroaches upon their habitat. So, if you just stop there, you would say, as the environmentalist wackos look at things in the interests of fairness, that the Cardinals -- the innocent beasts of the air -- will finally exact revenge against these polluting industrialists who destroyed lives and things! However, ladies and gentlemen, it's not exactly that way anymore, because the Steelers were also union workers! The Steelers were Big Labor, ladies and gentlemen.

Just this morning at the White House, Big Labor was rewarded by President Obama and Vice President Biden. Also, these birds are no longer just innocent beasts of the sky. These birds can fly into the engines of jet aircraft, as to so happened recently with a US Air flight. They were geese, admittedly, but a bird is a bird. An innocent beast of the sky is an innocent beast of the sky. Who flies these magnificent jetliners and staffs them? Why, Big Labor! Unionized pilots, unionized flight attendants -- and we now know that the federal government, along with the states and the cities where there are airports, have begun implementing programs to kill the birds.

Why? Because the birds threaten Big Labor: the pilot, the copilot, and the flight attendants who are flying the jets. We're going to kill the birds to protect Big Labor, since they were just rewarded in the White House this morning. Therefore, the game is not to be viewed as the polluting industrialist pigs versus the innocent beasts of the air. This game is viewed as these innocent beasts of the air being killers, flying themselves into the jets being flown by union people: the pilot, the copilot, and the flight attendants. (No, the passengers don't matter.) 


Therefore, ladies and gentlemen, the Steelers will kill the birds to further the Obama policy of protecting the union pilots and flight attendants. 

It's 27-10. Steelers cover."
[Reference Here]

Right off the top, wild animals have to given a nod over any human being based mascot. So, in the case of this Sunday's Super Bowl, the Ravens (also an object of poetry) have to be given the go ahead as the pick for the 2012 champion over the 49ers (those evil, land disrupting, polluting, money grubbing, never to be unionized, gold miners) ... even though the team is based in one of the most progressive cities (represented by Nancy Pelosi - by God) in the United States.

Personally, I'm all for hard work and self improvement, so I pick the San Francisco 49ers (the line right now is, 'Frisco' is favored by 3.5 points over the 'Marylanders' & the over/under on total points is 47.5) to take home the hardware, leaving the over-sized, scavenging, black birds flapping wounded on the field, quoting Edgar Allen Poe ... "Nevermore"!!

Teams: 49ers (home) vs. Ravens (away)

TV Schedule: CBS national broadcast

Announcers: Jim Nantz (play-by-play), Phil Simms (color)

Date: Feb. 3, 2013

Time: 6:30 p.m. ET / 3:30 p.m. PT

Location: The Superdome, New Orleans

Weather: 72 degrees, controlled

<a href="http://www.sodahead.com/united-states/who-is-your-environmental-wacko-pick-for-the-super-bowl-win/question-3499099/" title="Who is your Environmental Wacko pick for the Super Bowl win?">Who is your Environmental Wacko pick for the Super Bowl win?</a>


----

Hats off to the victors - Baltimore Ravens squander a 22 point lead early in the 3rd Quarter to win in the final minutes with taking a Safety penalty in the endzone that chewed up precious seconds on the clock to eventually win by three points.

----

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , ,