(Act No.  80, Public Acts of 2014)

In yet another round of shell game playing, our esteemed leadership in Lansing has just about outdone themselves with the transparent sophistry on display with this new tax hike scheme called Proposal 1 that is being portrayed as the sheep’s skin, when in fact it is the proverbial wolf acting as a fox in the hen house (see, we liberty lovers can play word games too).

Of course, as is typical, this Senate Bill (No. 822) is not a standalone bill that might make it easier to follow, interpret, understand and agree to, if one were so inclined to do so.  It is part of a package made up of ten bills:  Senate Bills 821, 822, 823, 824, 826, 827, 828, 829 and 830. And it is an amendment to 1937 PA 94 Sections 3, 19 and 21 as amended by 2007 PA 103, section 19 as added by 2004 PA 172, and Section 21 as amended by 2010 PA 37, and by adding Sections 2c and 10a.

Are you sufficiently confused yet or are you ready to raise your right hand, place your left hand on the Holy Bible and swear that you have read, tracked, collated, connected and otherwise comprehended all of the amendments and the original legislation regarding the issue of levying, assessing and collection of specific excise taxes on the storage, use or consumption in this state of tangible personal property and certain services? Neither have I, nor do I suspect that our elected officials can or will swear to an understanding of all of this either. That’s just not the way big government works.

Instead they insert well thought out sentences into excessively wordy legislation that they can then cherry pick and insert in a general summary that is then presented to the public for review, reaction and acceptance, such as: Section 3 (7) final sentence reads “The authority shall not increase any tax or tax rate, but is authorized to and shall levy the local community stabilization share at the rate provided in subsection (5).”

I would believe that this particular sentence was used to create the bullet point 4 that is shown on the ballot language which reads:  (4) Prohibit Authority from increasing taxes.  This (4) bullet point conveniently leaves the clause “but is authorized to and shall levy the local community stabilization share at the rate provided in subsection (5)” completely out of the general summary.

A thorough reading of subsection (5) informs the reader that the specific tax levied at the carefully delineated rates in each of the following fiscal years increases this new revenue source from $96,100,000.00 in the fiscal year 2015-2016 to an astonishing $572,600,000.00 in revenue for the fiscal year 2028-2029.  Will our children and grandchildren ever forgive us?

But then in the next breath or rather in the next subsection (6) the act continues by stating that, “The state share includes the portion of the use tax imposed at the additional rate of 2% approved by the electors of this state on March 15, 1994” … but continues by stating that “The local community stabilization share does not include the portion of the use tax imposed at the additional rate of 2% approved by the electors of this state on March 15, 1994”.  So does it or doesn’t it, and what exactly does this mean? Is the newly requested 6% in addition to the 2% that was added to the 4% in 1994?  Who really knows?

There’s more.  This Section (3) of PA 80 called Proposal 1 is revealing, albeit confusing.  Subsection (1) can be explained with excerpts as follows: “There is levied upon and there shall be collected from every person in this state a specific tax” … “for the privilege of using, storing, or consuming tangible personal property in this state at a total combined rate equal to 6% of the price of the property or services specific in Section 3a or 3b.”

Okay, before we get to an analysis of Section 3a or 3b, we discover that our elected officials believe that it is a “privilege,” beholden to the state to own personal property.  I actually thought it was something of an honor to work hard, earn a paycheck and choose to purchase personal property to add to the pursuit of happiness protected in our constitution.  Oh, I forgot, big government lovers don’t feel compelled to follow the constitution; but that is a subject for another day.

Back to Section 3, subsection (1) section 3a and 3b, for which it is claimed that they have been written “For the purpose of the proper administration of this act and to prevent the evasion of the tax.”

Section 3a indicates that this new tax levy applies to tangible personal property that is purchased “if brought into this state within 90 days of the purchase date and is considered as acquired for storage, use, or other consumption in this state”. Okay, that seems to cover just about everything purchased by everyone for every reason.

But Section 3b gives us some exemptions by stating that property used “solely for personal, non business purposes that is purchased outside of this state and is not an aircraft is exempt” but only if a couple of conditions are satisfied.  What are the conditions, you ask? They are if “The property is purchased by a person who is not a resident of this state at the time of purchase and is brought into this state more than 90 days after the date of the purchase” or if “The property is purchased by a person who is a resident of this state at the time of purchase and is brought into this state more than 360 days after the date of purchase.”

Who in the world dreams up these types of word trick pieces of legislation?  Who in the world is benefitting from these types of unenforceable exemptions? And how many new bureaucrats are going to get paid excessive compensation packages in an effort to try to enforce these unenforceable exemptions; let alone the number of new bureaucrats with excessive compensation packages who would have to be hired to set up and manage the intrusive regulatory spider web that will be required if this act passes?

Oh, but just think, all of these new regulators will increase the employment numbers, so the big government lovers will be happy and their lap-dog media will have something to wag their tails about.  See how it all works at our expense?

Even though I do not like the current confiscatory tax scheme on business’ personal property (which is double and triple taxing the most productive members of society), I urge you to VOTE NO on Proposal 1 on August 5, 2014 and force our elected officials to do better than this piece of political sophistry.




In addition to all of the headline news crises swirling around America, there is quiet movement underway to bring back some of the most destructive mortgage lending policies (such as lowered minimum credit scores, 100 percent financing options and expanded gift money sources) which could potentially bring about Housing Crisis II.

In fact, it might already be too late to stop this madness, but if we don’t gain an understanding of just what brought about Housing Crisis I, and hopefully awaken the masses to the insanity of the present system of government manipulation of money and means, they are going to literally Cloward-Piven us into certain economic destruction.

Therefore as a public service, the following is a housing-crisis event line in layman terms.

It all starts when Joe Average Borrower goes to Local Mortgage Broker asking for a loan to purchase a new home or to refinance an existing loan so that he could lower the interest rate on his current mortgage.  This cozy and convenient opportunity is made possible because mortgage interest rates are artificially made extremely favorable through big government interventionist policies (which in and of itself is a recipe for economic disaster).

In an effort to help Joe Average Borrower (and to put food on his own table), Local Mortgage Broker goes to Larger Bank to finance the new mortgage (for discussion purposes we will call this entity “Larger Bank” rather than Fifth Third Bank, Wells Fargo, Flagstaff or any of the other more recognizable mid-sized financial institutions located throughout our country).

Larger Bank goes to the formerly government-sponsored (now government owned) enterprises known as Fannie Mae (FNMA) or Freddie Mae (FMAC) and uses FNMA/FMAC guidelines to approve desired mortgage requested by Joe Average Borrower through Local Mortgage Broker. FNMA/FMAC guidelines are constructed, constrained and made almost unrecognizable by an alphabet soup of government regulatory agencies, all supposedly with “the people’s best interest” in their minds and hearts (yeah, sure).

In the previous decade, Local Mortgage Broker gave lots of Joe Average Borrowers an appealing new mortgage in the name of Larger Bank because (through vastly manipulated government regulatory intervention) FNMA and FMAC reduced the minimum credit-eligibility requirements so that they could offer programs and products that seem too good to be true, such as No Income/No Asset (NINA) loans or 100 percent financed home purchases (all done in the nebulous but oh so politically correct name of “fair housing”).  Note, in layman’s terms:  Anything that seems too good to be true generally is.

On another side note, in layman’s terms, rather than our government promoting success in the form of a Sunday chicken for every pot, and/or using their vast taxpayer funded resources to protect us from enemies both foreign and domestic, our government had suddenly deemed that success could only be a defined as home ownership for every Tom, Dick or Harry, whether they could afford the home or not.

So, Joe Average Borrower pays Larger Bank over the life of the loan or Larger Bank transfers or sells the loan to Another Lending Institution which results in Joe Average Borrower sending the same payment to a different address, while Larger Bank continues to get cash for future investments and everybody is happy.

These steps seem simple enough in layman’s terms, but in reality they underlie a carefully constructed maze of confusing wealth distribution tactics that resulted in nothing short of the masses being made economically anemic while the movers and shakers padded their own pockets with a healthy dose of inestimable wealth.

Now back to the details.  In the abnormal … I mean normal … course of government sponsored manipulation, Fannie Mae or Freddie Mae then purchased the new mortgages from Larger Bank using money gained from selling stocks to an honest array of investors, both large and small, who had great faith in these government sponsored (now owned) behemothans (didn’t most of us sort of trust our government at one point in time or another)?

Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac then bundled newly purchased mortgages into what was called MBS (mortgage-backed securities) through REMICs (real estate mortgage investment conduits) [are you confused yet?] which held the mortgages in trust (now there’s that wonderful word again – trust).

Then Fannie and Freddie issued what was called “securities” and sold them to Wall Street (“Wall Street” collectively refers to huge investment firms like JPMorgan Chase or Goldman Sachs, for example.  Let’s call these firms the Largest Banks).  Oh, yes, please note that Goldman Sachs, for one, has a long and storied relationship with big government power players.

So, in layman’s terms, our government gave tax exempt status to REMICs so that FNMA/FMAC didn’t have to pay taxes on the income that they earn from “selling securities” to the Largest Banks on Wall Street. Isn’t that convenient?

In layman terms, our benevolent government sponsored (now owns) these two behemoth financial institutions that benefited from the backing of the U.S. government with their securities earning a premium over Treasuries even though they were not considered to be direct obligations of the government.  How very quaint.

The black and white of it is that Fannie and Freddie are behind-the-scenes recipients of taxpayer funded entitlements known as “corporate welfare” with little or no recognizable government culpability that can only be benefiting the big government power players and their revolving door buddies at the Largest Banks.  And the story continues.

Various Wall Street power players (who move with ease and very little guilt in and out of bed with the big government power players) then divided these securities into risk classes and sold them to pension fund holders (for example) along with selling credit default insurance which they could not cover. If this all seems too circular, let’s willingly suspend disbelief and go on for purposes of discussion. Please remember at this point that the shaky mortgages held by Joe Average Borowers all over this country were being sold to Joe Average Pension Accounts as “securities.” Are you feeling secure yet?

Of course pensions are funded using employee (private sector) or taxpayer (public sector) streams of cash which are then compounded in value by the pension holders making investments, in the Largest Banks on Wall Street, for example.  The pension contracts for many of these large groups of people were set in stone when times were very good.  The private sector was making a ton of money because we were a manufacturing country that produced goods that consumers wanted to buy and so we were very generous in our agreements with the public sector and unions in general and we seemingly didn’t, and still don’t, have the wherewithal to tie these lifetime pension payouts to current market (which would, for example, alleviate the burden placed on tax payers to support government workers until death do us part, even when we are not earning enough money to put bread on our own tables).

Okay so everyone was still happy prior to Housing Crisis I.  Many people owned homes that were beyond their wildest dreams, the Local Brokers paid their employees well, Larger Banks paid their employees even better, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac paid their employees extremely well (some with bonuses that were thought to be through-the-proverbial-roof by many tax payers standards of living – but that has come to be expected when “the government” is the sponsor/owner), the Largest Banks paid their employees lavishly.  Pension funds funded their obligations (or at least used various creative accounting practices to make it appear as though they had fully funded pension accounts), and government workers retired with compensation packages that outpace anything that most Joe Average private sector workers will ever see in their lifetimes.

But the Joe Average Borrowers liked their homes so much that they didn’t and don’t complain and we all looked the other way because we were so busy being happy.

Then reality struck.  By the mid 2000s we were seeing our good union jobs being NAFTA’d  and GATTed right out of our country and our speculative loans based upon shaky ground to begin with, became wildly unmanageable.  And when Joe Average Borrower didn’t have any skin in the game because he purchased his home without down payment or risk, he simply walked away from the home and the mortgage, and the American Dream became a nightmare for a wide swath of society. Guess what happened then … the Banks owned the homes (Oh, great)!  Pension funds were raided and big government bailouts were passed out like candy to the very same people who benefited the most from the big government intervention tactics that caused this crying shame to begin with.

And so, what did the big government power players do when our entire economy collapsed and the curtain was finally pulled back on a scheme so convoluted as to be unrecognizable?  It increased regulations!   Made new rules!  Glossed over the old scheme with a new scheme and continued to take it out on the very people who work so hard to give “the government” such a cozy cover in the first place.

Once that perfect government sponsored storm began in 2008, our government initiated a congressionally approved stimulus package called TARP whereby Joe Average Borrower literally funded Largest Bank to the tune of somewhere between $400 and $700 billion tax payer dollars.  And as if that wasn’t enough the government shortly thereafter started pumping printed, fiat money into our system with what was called QE (quantitative easing – or increased government monetary theft … I mean increased government intervention, in laymen terms) which has continued to keep mortgage interest rates artificially low.  Just a note, in layman’s terms, this fake money is surely destroying our children’s inheritance.

Now, as a result of a laundry list of government interventions gone bad, we have a crushing new level of government regulatory oversight of our private mortgage industry where hard working citizens are being treated as if they are most certainly guilty of something until the regulators prove them innocent of everything.

We have the government takeover of our financial markets with the printing of fiat money that is being handed out to invisible recipients for unsustainable causes.

We have the government takeover of our health insurance industry with no known health “care” improvements.

Our auto industries are being literally destroyed with recalls and regulations; plant closings and layoffs. We have been assured that our jobs will “never come back.”

We have the seemingly permanent loss of home equity, personal savings and lowered earnings for a large percentage of the productive segment of the United States, and yet we still don’t have enough Joe Average Borrowers who are willing to put the brakes on the big government power players who continue to line their pockets with our redistributed wealth.

Even in layman’s terms; it doesn’t make a lick of sense.

And now we have new people (future homeowners with zero “skin in the game”) streaming across our borders willy nilly? God help us.

If we don’t get off our couches and actually do something to stop this madness, in layman’s terms, we are all screwed.


The Disgrace In The White House


Call me old-fashioned if you will but it seems to me that there should be certain minimum standards of behavior for a President of the United States, and this man barrack hussein obama is sliding headlong into depths of disgraceful behavior that wouldn’t even qualify for the minimum standards required for an entry level customer service representative in a local fast food restaurant.

How many behind-the-counter “food ambassadors” would long get away with telling their bosses, their customers or their co-workers to “sue me for doing my job,” (that is, if in fact, they were “doing their job” miserably)?  Quite frankly, even if they were doing their job well, that kind of taunting, disrespectful attitude could be grounds for serious reprimand if not outright dismissal.  But from our President, it’s disgraceful.

And for that matter, he is NOT “doing his job.”  In the big picture, his “job” is to enforce the laws of the land (which he regularly flaunts); his “job” is to faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States (he appears to have zero interest in our constitution other than to shred it). His “job” is to be a respectful ambassador of these United States of America; showing allegiance to our friends and strength in opposing our enemies (the world is on fire and we seem to have little control over any of it); and to be an effective Commander in Chief to our armed services (he is firing our military leaders, leaving our Marine in a Mexican jail, releasing the world’s most dangerous enemies back on to the battlefield and weakening our core defenses at every turn). As if this disgraceful big picture isn’t bad enough, even in the little things, this man is a disgrace.

Having grown up in a home with a pool table in the basement, I actually can and like to shoot a game of pool once in a while, and when the opportunity affords itself, I have been known to put a few quarters in a table at a local tavern, but I’m nowhere near being responsible for managing the national crises of the day.  For barrack hussein obama to have allowed himself to be seen, let alone photographed shooting pool in Colorado while our southern border is under massive foreign invasion might be almost as outrageous as his use of a pen and a phone to destroy the constitutional checks and balances of power.  For this so-called Commander In Chief not to consider this invasion an actual act of war is disgraceful.

As unfortunate as all this is disgraceful, I guess “it’s just another power thing! x” … but America deserves better, much better than this.



Will the Real Domestic Terrorists Please Stand Up?


In a Guest Opinion column published in The Oakland Press on August 23, 2009, entitled “Domestic Terrorist Comes Clean,” I opined that I am a domestic terrorist according to the United States Department of Homeland Security. I even gave myself a mob name:  JGangsta.

My commentary was, at the time, a naïve, tongue-in-cheek look at what I have since discovered is a truly serious problem that the American citizens need to be made aware of in the context of the ever evolving regulatory spider’s web that is being woven by the people whom I contend are the real domestic terrorists.

Back in 2009, I listed my love of our God-given rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as the lynch pins that made me a suspected terrorist.  There was even a government website that you could go to and report people whom you suspected might be domestic terrorists (I don’t want to give out that website address in case it is still active and you feel compelled to turn me in).

But now it seems that the evidentiary bar has been set even lower; all that is now needed is for “someone” to deem my “behavior” as “belligerent” and I could be in big trouble (have I said anything belligerent yet)?

You see a couple of years ago, while we were busy celebrating one of our numerous federally protected holidays, U.S. President Barack Hussein Obama signed into law the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 (NDAA) on New Year’s Eve, December 31, 2011.  This law was subsequently also passed in both houses of Congress, so trust me neither the executive branch nor either house in the legislative branch seem to appreciate the fundamental protections that legal American citizens are guaranteed in the United States Constitution.

These rights, as you probably know (even though our government officials don’t seem to know), include freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom to petition our government for a redress of grievances, freedom to be secure in our persons and belongings, freedom of due process when charged with a crime, the right of a trial by jury and possibly most importantly the bedrock fact that all powers that are not enumerated as belonging to the federal government are reserved to the State or to the people.

Now before you roll your eyes and think that this is just another conspiracy theory being ranted about by the far right political activist that you know me to be, please read the ACLU’s opinion of this very dangerous piece of legislation:

In the above linked article, Anthony D. Romero, ACLU executive director said, “President Obama’s action today is a blight on his legacy because he will forever be known as the president who signed indefinite detention without charge or trial into law. The statute is particularly dangerous because it has no temporal or geographic limitations, and can be used by this and future presidents to militarily detain people captured far from any battlefield.  The ACLU will fight worldwide detention authority wherever we can, be it in court, in Congress, or internationally.”

So even the ACLU agrees that the National Defense Authorization Act gives the law enforcement arm of the federal government legal standing to incarcerate United States citizens without recourse to any form of judicial process. And of course, it is the federal government who gets to define which person is “covered” and they get to define what is considered a “belligerent act.”

Nowhere in our constitution is such unrestrained power delegated to any government official at any level under any circumstances, and the good people all across the political spectrum must stop looking the other way and pretending that this type of tyranny isn’t fast approaching critical mass in this country.

Let me ask you, “Am I being belligerent by questioning this overreach of federal enumerated power?”  Without protection from the State, our county and our local legislative bodies, individuals like me or, quite frankly like you, could potentially be whisked away in the middle of the night never to be seen again.

Now although you might savor that in my case, is this the type of government action that you want to sanction for your children?

After all, it truly is tomorrow’s liberty that we must protect today.

If you want to protect your children’s liberty, I would recommend that you go to the website to get an understanding of the NDAA, outside of what the spin doctors in the mainstream media want you to believe, and then demand a stop to this perverse misapplication of federal power by the people in our government who are legitimately behaving like real domestic terrorists.



The Life of Arkansas Attorney Hillary Clinton


Let’s start with a couple of premises.  First, with all due respect to the hundreds of thousands of attorneys who take their job of representation seriously, it cannot be overlooked that an attorney’s primary purpose is to advocate for a price.  In other words if you pay an attorney enough money or offer them a lucrative enough position they will work at building a believable case around any story no matter how far-fetched that story might be.

My second premise is that attorneys are rarely reckless.  They know better than most that their every word “can and will be used against them in the court of law” or at the very least in the court of public opinion.  So, a couple of pat answers you can expect to hear from good attorneys who find themselves on the proverbial hot seat are, “I don’t remember,” or “I can’t comment because this issue is part of an ongoing investigation,” or “that depends upon what the definition of is is,” or “what difference does it make?”

Unless of course there is an unknown “hot mike” nearby or a “whistleblower” who makes private comments public, then attorneys might have to destroy records and discredit credible witnesses or discredit records and destroy credible witnesses, whatever fits the case and so, I think, certain historical comments deserve independent investigation.

For example, it was on Sept 14, 2011 at Andrews Air Force Base, when the then Secretary-of-State Arkansas Attorney Hillary Clinton said “we’ve seen the heavy assault on our post in Benghazi that took the lives of those brave men.  We’ve seen rage and violence directed at American embassies over an awful internet video that we had nothing do to with.” These were the words used by Hillary Clinton to a group of bereaved attendees when the bodies of four Americans killed in Benghazi were returned to their families for proper burial.  Those were specific words, prepared in advance, made when the still active Benghazi investigation was as fresh as the grief that gripped our Nation for what was immediately known to be a well-planned terrorist attack that occurred on the anniversary of the second American “date that will live in infamy” – the September 11, 2001 destruction of the two towers of the New York World Trade Center.

If dissected properly those remarks become three separate attorney comments: 1) a specific reference to “the heavy assault on our post in Benghazi” 2) the statement “rage and violence directed at American embassies [generally speaking] … over a video” and 3) “we had nothing to do with it.”  How very impressive that Arkansas Attorney Hillary Clinton moved from a specific event to a general reference to a claim of innocence in one breath with specificity and generality masked as one.  Of course the media let her get away with it.

Can it be said that where there are trends there are truths?  Well, we could study the detailed accounts of real life murders that rival the brilliant fictional work of Agatha Christie but who has the time?

Or we could contemplate the words of Sander Hicks a self proclaimed “lifelong independent media activist” (with a decidedly leftist tinge) in an article published on February 8, 2008 entitled Hillary’s Secrets where he states that, “Whether it’s her background at the Rose Law Firm, her role in the Clinton White House pardons, her little-known testimony at the Iran/Contra hearings, or her silence about the suspicious death of friend Vince Foster, Hillary’s ability to keep secrets from the public has been her political currency. Secrets are the source of her power.”

He continues by saying that, “Bill Clinton was so enthusiastic about pardoning, the Clintons transformed the standard process into a maddening frenzy of get-out-of-jail-free passes for their friends.

According to Barbara Olson’s book The Final Days, “Phones rang constantly, as if the White House was conducting some kind of pardon telethon… The mounting cases led to friction with pardon attorneys at the Justice Department. The White House resolved this by simply bypassing the Department of Justice altogether.” Hmm, it seems that big government power players still enjoy bypassing powerful constitutional government entities when the mood strikes them.

Oh by the way that is the same Barbara Olson, author of the well-documented book called, “Hell to Pay: The unfolding story of Hillary Rodham Clinton” who tragically died in the aforementioned terrorist attack on September 11, 2001.

If we had the time or inclination we could go back even further to the shady shores of Whitewater, Arkansas to see that shady is as shady does, but suffice it to say that on June 18, 1996 a Senate Special Whitewater Committee issues an 800-page majority report that spoke of the Clinton Administration as “an American presidency [that] misused its power, circumvented the limits on its authority and attempted to manipulate the truth” and the committee report identified then First Lady Arkansas Attorney Hillary Clinton as “ … “the central figure” in all aspects of the alleged wrongdoings.”

Oh, and remember the May of 1994 federal grand jury subpoena for Rose Law Firm Madison Guaranty records that were not found until January of 1996 at the Clinton’s private residence with Hillary’s and Vince Foster’s fingerprints on them – yep, that’s Hillary’s partner Vince Foster, who had “committed suicide” in 1993?

Whatever you wish to think about the now long ago death of Vince Foster, then Clinton buddy and Assistant Attorney General Webster Hubbell had this to say on July 20, 1993:  “Don’t believe a word you hear. It was not suicide. It couldn’t have been.”

It was just a couple of months ago when interviewed on ABC News (December 18, 2013) that Arkansas Attorney Hillary Clinton said to Barbara Walters, “… I could go on and on (but) I think we ought to pay attention to what’s happening right now…”

Yes, I could go on and on too (but) I think we ought to pay attention to what happened in history.