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Friday, November 28, 2008

Winter Weather Has Arrived

Flashing on an electrified portable, and towable highway sign sitting on the shoulder of highway 70, heading west, in Western Pennsylvania, read, "Winter Weather Exists." I am so glad that the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation made us aware that "Winter Weather Exists", otherwise, we all would likely not have known!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Crime of the Century!

The crime of the century continues. It is like no other crime because it involves not the typical T.V. style crooks seen by genius masterminds planning to steal the most valuable and priceless items, such as the Hope diamond, or precious original U.S. documents stored under glass, lock, key, and armed guards. But, an even greater crime performed by the President of the United States. This is a crime executed by the Bush Crime Family, yet planned and designed by the richest 400 or so (Forbes list) persons in the United States and around the world.

It is hard to believe there are such criminals, but they do exist. The crime is to take taxpayer’s money straight out of the Treasury and have it infuse the top 9 to 20 banks, not only in the United States, but around the world, in the form of a bail-out.

These very wealthy banksters and top-tier stakeholders, such as those controlling the most powerful hedge funds, have their hands deep inside the President of the United States making him move on their behalf. Bush, then, has his hands deep inside Paulson and Bernanke operating their every move on behalf of the “puppeteers”, or, one might call them “financial raptors”.

These raptors have instructed the government to purchase “toothless” shares in their financial institutions without public transparency or open exposure to the actual collateral exchanged, or held, for the bail-out packages. It is all secretive. No transparency. No identification of the collateral or of its true value. It is all done by design because the collateral is worth-less garbage securities, and uncollectable credit default swaps.

These financial institutions are floating in the liquidity made available through the hard work of taxpayers, as they toss off from their balance sheets toxic derivatives and securities into the sinking lifeboats of the U.S. government. Their reason for all of this is their ultimate crime-a crime by government design.

The purpose is to become even richer at the expense of mounting foreclosures and unemployment, as working Americans become victims of a mounting recession, or likely, a depression. The plan for these ultra-rich financial raptors is to take the paper wealth they are receiving and build fatter, and more solvent balance sheets, even though they greedily gambled bets mounting to massive losses while raking in huge salaries, and benefits as their stockholders took nose dives in portfolio loss-pits.

Also, they have taken $250 billion of bail-out money to pay themselves bonuses, salary increases, and payouts to primary stockholders. The Federal Reserve has handed out another $2 trillion in emergency loans in the form of secretive give-aways to banks and financial institutions, and are not willing to reveal who the recipients are of such extraordinary sums of OUR money. This sounds like Tony Soprano standing in a dark, out-of-the-way warehouse waving in a van filled with cash to be distributed to his loyal "friends" working on behalf of his cause. This is how the Bush Crime Family works. Bush is giving a bail-out pardon to all those loyal to his "cause". 

The financial institution’s bankers, then create new securitized investment vehicles through their hedge funds filled with ultra-rich greedsters and fraudsters that have been burning down the economic house we all live in, in order to buy up the remaining hard assets still standing in the country during a time when our own paper wealth smolders in the ashes of a chard economy.

They will buy up bankrupt or near bankrupt companies, corporations, service enterprises, and community infrastructure facilities unable to fund their own operations because their local communities are teetering on insolvency, such as water treatment plants, toll roads, and electric generation facilities, and much, much more in order to actually own and control the industrial and service sectors, turning public into private infrastructure, while transforming what is left standing into their own wealth-generating engines!

It all began 30 years ago, and was minted into a finely crafted machine when the Future Commodities Modernization Act of 1999 was casted for them. This allowed banks to become financial investment institutions, and, in reverse, financial investment institutions to become banks. They morphed into full-service lending operations specializing in debt creation. Debt all of a sudden became the new wealth. It is called a “fiat currency” system. Also, private financial institutions were exempted from regulatory supervision. It was actually made illegal to do so. This put into play the rise of the laizzez-faire, greedy free-marketeering made available by Alan Greenspan through his power at the Federal Reserve and influence at the Treasury to make cheap money available to his neo-liberal, banksta pals. A money-making, unregulated, super-leveraged, fraudulently rated, casino-like frenzy was given a go-ahead.

The financial bubble broke and spilled all over us throughout these last 8 years. There was the tech bubble, then the housing bubble, and ending with the financial bubble. The Bubble Boy President and His Bubble Making Machine. Whatever has not been out-sourced and moved off-shore, will be bought up through taxpayer (and foreign borrowed) dollars, reinforced by cheap government interest rates, yet not earned the old fashioned way through hard work, but by sitting at a computer terminal or around a nicely polished mahogany conference desk for mere pennies on the dollar.

This is the crime of the century. President-elect Obama has been quiet about any outrage about this. He has been silent regarding this deliberately planned theft upon the nation. His game-board-pieces include Jim Leach, involved in the deregulation legislation, and other capitulators to this crime. Obama MUST fix this raging wild fire of a disaster the right way, otherwise, a depression will sweep over us.

He needs to very quickly act once he takes office to blockade this theft upon the nation.

First, he must stop the economic bleeding in order to have capital for quickly improving the economy. This is a code red emergency! Many have said he must close the 600 or so military bases around the world. Obama MUST end the $12 billion per month being pumped into the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan on January 21, 2009, and not 16 or so months later. That will be too late for US. Then, in order to allow Americans to feel they can move between jobs, and create start-ups, would be to end health care insurance company predatory practices, and put America on a universal health care system.

Also, he must drastically reduce the enormous (1/3 of our yearly government budget) Pentagon-war machine spending; raise taxes on the top-tier income earners; penalized corporations that have moved off-shore for cheap labor and practices, and reward those who return those jobs to OUR own workers; penalize nation-states and countries that value their currencies artificially low in order to sell their stuff cheap to us when they are actually showing trade surpluses, budget surpluses, and a growing GDP.

If Obama does not move immediately to implement these fast-acting initiatives and policies, then kiss a visible recovery within the next 16-24 months, if not longer, good-bye, and, very likely watch a depression sweep over this nation, while the ultra-rich financial raptors prey upon the hard assets of the country for themselves, whereby they will, ultimately, control wages, benefits, and employment rates for generations to come.

We have to ask, did these financial raptors know all along that the financial bubble would result in the crash of the nation’s assets? Did they know that their issuance of free-flowing cheap credit, in various configurations, accompanied by compounded interest payments that took the form of home loans, car loans, municipal loans, student loans, and business loans through credit lines, consumer paper, and long term debt would, eventually, collapse leaving a pile of distressed hard assets to pick through and carry to their nest of winnings? The signs were there: zero savings rate, the world’s biggest debtor nation with no surpluses having to borrow from the world’s surplus nations to feed our consumption habits, and speculation occurring everywhere, from homes, to toxic derivatives molded out of mortgage and other instruments of debt, to commodities, to leveraged buy-outs.

Did they stack the deck knowing that the house of cards would fall, and they, the raptors, with billions and billions of dollars in their personal portfolios, would eventually, fly off with cheap prizes? If so, they could
not do it without the government handing them the rule book to re-write and the Treasury’s cash register open to pilfer, as well as the doormen to make it all accessible. So far, this has been the crime of the century. Now the question to ask is, “Is Obama on their side or our side of this crime scene?”

Thanks for reading,  jerry

Watch the link below:

Friday, November 14, 2008

The US Depression

Christopher Laird had written an article called, “Tough Sledding Ahead, Surviving a Coming US Dollar Collapse”, on his site It was posted on the blogspot -- Mr. Laird says that there are only 2-4 years before the US dollar collapses. He presented reasons why the dollar has been rallying, which were flight to cash during market liquidations, the hoarding of cash because businesses cannot roll over the short term credit they used for payrolls and ongoing operations, the usual end of the year cash surge for businesses and financial institutions, the flight to the US dollar for safety, and then finally, other national currencies adjusting to the slowing world economy, and the cooling of the once hot foreign markets. And, in addition, there has been a lot of money moving out of the “emerging” markets to the U.S.

He goes on to say that we are about to face two significant problems never seen before. The world is going to see a severe recession bordering on an economic depression, and the collapse of the US dollar. He says that what is holding the US dollar up in spite of the worsening US trade and budget deficits, which add up to around $1 trillion, is that the US economy was an exporter's dream customer-come-true. As long as we kept buying stuff, a lot of stuff, our trade partners would buy our debt, as well as buy up our assets.

Now that the consumer is tapped out, and in debt so much that they have to cut back on their own consumer purchases and binge buying addictions, foreign investors of the US dollar, and US Treasuries are likely rethinking if the dollar and Treasuries are good investments, or if they should be reconsidered as such. Mr. Laird states that, at that point, the US dollar will rapidly fall into a devaluation crisis. He predicts that the first crisis will be an economic depression, and the second will be the demise of the dollar, or at the very least, a severe devaluation likely around 70% or more (at first).

He claims that this depression would last 5 years, with unemployment reaching 20%.

He also discusses the crisis in China, and once their economy severely slows, to what he claims to be 8% growth, the country will experience political unrest and massive unemployment. The China Daily newspaper, dated October 20, 2008 read as follows:

“China's economy, one of the fastest-growing economies in the world and the biggest contributor to global growth, grew 9.9 percent year-on-year in the first three quarters of this year, according to official figures released on Monday, showing a trend of a slowdown amid the current global financial crisis.

In the third quarter, the gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate slowed down to 9 percent, the lowest in five years, from 10.6 percent in the first quarter, 10.1 percent for the second quarter and 10.4 percent in the first half of 2008.”

Mr. Laird says that China must add 15 million jobs per year merely to keep up with the population growth, since it has a total population of 1.3 billion. China continues to have 800 million poor, rural citizens trying to vet for the limited city jobs.

He does not feel that the economy will stop contracting. Without credit the world economies will continue to contract. Everything is credit based. The only other option is a pay-as-you-go system and businesses are not structured to operate in that way. Businesses are accustom to credit and if this way of doing business does not return quickly, a world economic depression will come. Mr. Laird does not feel that credit will becoming back.

This spells doom for the dollar. Lower interest rates, and the Bush economic stimulus package handed to the citizens did not work.

There are two critical problems leading to an economic depression, as explained by Mr. Laird. The first is deleveraging. It cannot be stopped. The financial bubble beginning in 1945 and, which has now ended in 2008 has been broken. He estimates that there is, at least, a $1000 trillion worth of world financial markets in the process of deleveraging. The biggest deleveraging comes from derivatives, which were basically bets. He writes that the Bank of International Settlements states that world derivatives amount to over $1000 trillion or $1 quadrillion in value!!!!!!

What has been handed out to slow the banking crisis is nothing when it has not opened up credit. And then, who will borrow under such uncertain conditions?

Mr. Laird has solutions. His first is to repeal Social Security and Medicare obligations. The second is debt forgiveness. By doing this, the world would recover, but he realistically sees this as never happening for many reasons. He foresees the two entitlements going bankrupt in 30 years, but in my opinion, 30 years is a long way away. A great deal of change will likely occur over that period of time to correct the weaknesses in these entitlement obligations.
I agree with Mr. Laird’s predictions, at some level, but I feel that if the Obama administration does not directly inject this economy with the right fixes, then what Mr. Laird predicts might actually happen! I have stated my fixes in previous posts, but will repeat them along with others.

The economy needs a major works and services Marshall Plan type of intervention. Many of our roads, bridges, schools, sewers, water delivery systems, public transportation network, airports and public buildings need repair and renovation. A priority list of the most needy projects must begin on January 21, 2009. Fallow agricultural lands, both in rural and urban areas need to be planted with “green” and healthy crops for people instead of livestock. Local planting and distribution needs to occur to help reduce fuel and shipping costs during in-season growing periods. Public transportation subsidies must go out to communities to increase ridership and reduce costs as a lure to commuters to ride public transportation to and from work.

The federal government needs to give grants and rent the roofs of homeowners, business owners, corporate owners, and public buildings to install solar panels that can connect into the existing energy grids all across the nation. When available, more wind generators should be built to also tap into the grid. A new and more efficient electric grid should be created.
The government, if they are to subsidize the auto industry, should mandate that any cash infusions would come at a cost. All corporations willing to take government tax dollars must allow for worker ownership stake in the companies. In addition, the downsizing of brands would likely be necessary, and merging all three American car companies into one reasonably sized auto manufacturer makes the most sense. The building of electric hybrids and full electric vehicles must be a requirement. Also, grants should be made available for individuals to convert their own gas vehicles into full electric cars. Also, force the oil and gas companies that hold land leases to either explore those sites, or give them up. It is believed that wind power generation machines could go up very quickly and hooked into the grid with little down time. 
(See our video library for electric conversions.) (Read Peter Morici.)

Dr. Peter Morici has written that the Chinese Yuan has been valued too low in relation to that nation's productivity. The Chinese have tried to keep their currency pegged close to the Dollar in order to keep their exports to the U.S. cheap. He feels that must be changed. That change would positively effect the U.S. trade deficit imbalance. 

Robert Kuttner supports some of these interventions, as well as “professionalizing” many jobs, which are not considered so, but are necessary for a society to function properly. By making training certificate programs mandatory for day care providers, nursing aides, nursing home care providers, and others it would increase their pay and level of competence.

And finally,there is a need to address a national type of health care program for all Americans, with the government taking ownership of all drug research and development, which would also include the patents on drugs. By doing so, the drug companies no longer can claim that the high price of drugs is due to research and develop. Drug companies would only be responsible for the manufacturing of the drugs. (Dr. Dean Baker explains this idea in further detail.)

All these interventions would reduce the trade deficit, put people back to work, allow for small businesses to blossom without the worry of family health care costs, and would create a new export market for new and advanced Green technology products. We would, once again, increase our industrialization from 17% of GDP, to higher percentages.

In addition, significant tax rate hikes would have to be raised on the top-tier income earners, just as it had been done during other times throughout the 20th century. For example, between 1936-1982 the rates ranged between 70 to 92%. Suspension of capital gains and inheritance taxes on the top-tier might also have to considered.  (Read Larry Beinhart.)

Another very important initiative required, which would improve our energy usage would be to develop greater energy efficiency and conservation technologies. This would allow us to use energy in a smarter way. Efficiency and conservation technologies would make the delivery and use of energy more effective. It could be looked at its lower end level, such as turning down the thermostat and turning off of lights, but at the higher end, it would be better engines, motors, switches, controls, electrical grids, etc.

I feel that the future would see a more stable, prosperous and secure nation with these initiatives. The debt would increase, of course, but the alternative would be much worse. There is no question that without these interventions, the nation would be destined for a long lasting depression. A recession cannot be avoided, but hopefully, it would be short-lived with interventions discussed here.

Thank you for reading,  jerry

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Privatization of Retirement Accounts

The latest fear stirred by Republicans is the implementation of Guaranteed Retirement Accounts. What has been discussed by Democratic House congressional members was to take personal retirement accounts, including 401Ks and IRAs, and convert them to accounts managed by the Social Security Administration and create what would be called a Guaranteed Retirement Account (GRE). GREs would guarantee a fixed 3% annual rate of return. In place of tax breaks workers now receive for contributions and thus a lower tax rate, they would receive $600 annually from the government, inflation-adjusted, as outlined by Teresa Ghilarducci, a professor of economic policy analysis at the New School for Social Research in New York, while testifying before the House Committee on Education and Labor, on October 7, 2008.

It has sure roused more finger pointing at those socialized Democrats. The Republicans are afraid of a part of this proposal that would limit anyone inheriting the GSA savings of a loved one, who would die before retirement, to only half of the account balance. If that loved one were to die after retirement, they would only be allowed to pass on the part of the GSE that they paid into, as well as the interest acquired, but not the employer’s part of the contribution.
Here are some facts about retirement ages. The average white male American will live to 5.7 years past the retirement of 65, which is 70.7 years. Another statistic showed that the average white male will live to 74.8 years. The average black male American will not live to that age, but to 68.2 years. 88% currently received their retirement income only from Social Security. 19% currently received income from private pensions and annuities, as well. 29% received income from assets, too. This example showed that black Americans do not benefit as much as white Americans from retirement benefits of any sort. Older African Americans, on average, received more than 44 percent of their total income from Social Security. African American women over the age of 65, on average, relied on Social Security for 56.8 percent of their income. Social Security has been the only source of income for one in three African Americans over the age of 65.

Today, most retiring Americans will not have enough money to actually retire. Most equity-based accounts have lost nearly 45% of their un-guaranteed value. People have been pulling their investments out of 401K accounts with penalties, and suffering the losses further crushing the stock market and their savings. People are justly afraid of losing their life savings.
As many have debated, the stock market could see a DOW of 6000, which would be another 25%, totaling a projected loss of a whopping 65% loss in the portfolio of many hardworking Americans. By having a GSA program, it might keep top-tier taxpayers from taking their 401K accounts outside the country reducing America’s budget deficit and national debt because it would encourage foreign investors to buy US bonds and Treasuries boosting the value of the dollar. America would grow overall because such accounts could be used as investment instruments for technology for the 21st century and, once again, help America become more of an exporter of finished goods, and improve our nation's self-sufficiency.

Yet, there are red-flag wavers throughout the Republican regressive movement warning against such a move. We have the Heritage Foundation warning Congress against raising taxes on their wealthy constituents, or increasing regulations, which the lack-thereof was the cause of much of our economic problems. I guess, they like what their regressive philosophy has done to the nation. For most, the Heritage Foundation is a dinosaur, and regressive to the national security of the nation.

None of what the Heritage Foundation warned the Congress against doing did not work over the last 30 years to sustain this economy, jobs, retirement accounts, control of the debt, stimulate the economy for sustainability and improve wages for workers. Corporations already pay the lowest taxes due to right-offs, and loopholes. In addition, Bush’s tax cuts did not stimulate the economy at all.

Now, we get this great piece of advice from Jerry Bramlett, president and CEO of BenefitStreet, Inc, and independent 401K plan administrator, which was found in Karen McMahan’s, Carolina Journal article, “Democratic Leaders in the U.S. House Discuss Confiscating 401(K)s, IRAs.” He said, “one of the best ways to ensure retirement security would be to have the U.S. Department of Labor develop educational materials for workers so they could make better investment decisions, not exchange equity investments in retirement accounts for Treasury bills, as proposed in the GSAs.” What is this guy talking about? Does he mean they he, and others, do not provide such handouts to their clients, nor outline for them good and sound invest advice strategies before taking their money? That is what it sounded like to me. Is he saying that does not want to see investors, who have been losing their 401ks, which are being managed by investment firms that are still taking out management fees from dwindling uninsured retirement funds, transferred to insured investments? Maybe Mr. Bramlett should have warned his colleagues that they needed to have been warning their clients about the signs of a market collapse, instead of scolding the investors who were afraid of losing their life savings when they pulled out and ran to safer ground.

These supporters of investment companies who have been managers of investment plans, taking fees and commissions, but not acting on behalf of their clients swiftly enough, or at all, while the retirement plans of hardworking Americans swirled down into the disappearing stock market sink hole, should wake up and take responsibility. These retirement/investment managers, and their companies still made their fees and commissions even as the portfolios went down the drain. Now these guys (and gals) who were supposed to be the stewards of our investment-retirement portfolios are crying and whining about a newly considered Guaranteed Retirement Account program, which might actually protect retirement accounts from disappearing, since they would have every American contributing into this guaranteed powerful investment account.

Hey 401K administrators in the private financial sector, where were you when we needed you the most? Where were you when we needed you to act swiftly, and with precision to save falling accounts? Were you asleep, or dilly-dallying around? So much for your keen professional judgment and skills. The reason you are paid is not when everything is moving smoothly, but when it appears that there is a brick wall ahead and your client is about to crash into it.

GSAs would be a boom for the country, and retirees. It would not prevent anyone to take their after-tax incomes and invest in un-insured and riskier investment vehicles of their choice. There would no restrictions on inheritance, for most, or where one would choose to invest. Minority retirees, and whites who might not live to appreciate a long retired life might benefit from such a program. Also, middle Americans, who are spending most of their incomes on everyday essentials, such as rent/mortgage, insurance, utilities, health care, food, gas, clothing, taking care of elderly or sick family members, and have a difficult time saving would greatly benefit from a government directed guaranteed retirement account, too.

Thanks for reading, jerry

Friday, November 7, 2008

Barack Obama's Challenge

A gloomy, gray, and thunderous economic cloud hangs over the first movement, as the curtain falls over what could be a Barack Obama symphony. What matters most now is how he conducts his newly formulating orchestra.

He has a grand undertaking before him. He must take command, immediately, over what is his FDR moment left to him to clean up after an over-inflated, egotistical, Texas-swaggering buffoon and his "leprosetic" political regressive comrades made a dastardly mess.

Barack's challenge is unprecedented for our time and is colossal in scope. This new president has to prioritize the initiatives he will determine to be of the greatest importance.

For many of us the most critical concerns are as follows: the economy, the growing unemployment rate, and the housing meltdown. All three of these crises are intertwined. Later can come a fix to the health care debacle. But that is not the priority as is the economy and those pieces related to it.

The economy is losing jobs because consumers are spending less because they have lost their job or their home, or are in significant debt, or have lost their life savings because the financial industry has the credit market frozen up resulting from its own economic implosion. Or, all of the above!

20% of all mortgagees owe more than their home is currently worth. 7 million homeowners are behind in their payments. 18% are underwater. 5-8 million homeowners can no longer pay their mortgage obligations. There has been a $5 trillion loss in homeowner wealth due to the bursting housing bubble, which is like having around $700 billion pulled out of circulation, ie. spending.

Consumer spending dropped 0.3% in September. The U.S. economy shrank by 0.3% in Q3. Consumer confidence, in October, fell to 38 points the lowest reading on record--EVER, as reported by Wachovia. This was the biggest one-month drop since 1978. The collapse has delivered the biggest fall in spending by consumers in the past 24 years.

October stock market paper losses amounted to $2.3 trillion. Since September, the global equities market lost $16 trillion. 

Just since January, 2008, the U.S. has lost 750,000 jobs, and the numbers keep rising. The U.S. may see close to 1,200,000 jobs lost for the year alone. Currently, there has been 10.2 million jobs lost, thus far under this president!

While all of this unraveling is going on, Bush delivered a Banksta Gangsta Pardon to all his financial devotees on Wall Street. This president has formulated a method to deliver "no-risk capitalism." (Naomi Klein, "Bailout=Bush's Final Pillage". 11-3-08, He has told Paulson to create the opportunity for the biggest banks to consolidate their wealth and power through mergers with one another. This occurred  in 1929-1931 as J.P. Morgan consolidated his financial power and wealth. And, look at J.P. Morgan-Chase today!

Naomi Klein says that this bailout's purpose is to protect the wealthy, yet skittish investors by tying these private companies to the taxpayer by offering a no-risk, and safe investment the public would cover, yet without any investment stake, with a voice or vote. "It was always about turning the state into a giant insurance agency for Wall Street--a safety net for the people who need it least, subsidized by the people who need it most."

President-elect Obama should immediately call for a freeze on the issuance of the bailout funds in order to re-write the rules of delivery, ownership stake and purpose.

A plan for these funds should be established to stabilize the housing collapse. This would be a challenge because of the complicated bundling of mortgages. No one really knows who actually owns the originally written mortgages. Nevertheless, this must be done, otherwise we will likely see $12 trillion in housing bubble wealth disappear and empty houses littering our neighborhoods.

Obama needs to propose a bill that re-writes the tax codes, at least, to collect on the $300-600 billion in off-shore tax dodges used by the top-tier wealth accumulators.

As FDR did, we need to use the debt to finance a Ground-Up works program. If this isn't done immediately then a depression might not be diverted!

By using the government to direct massive public works and service programs, through rebuilding and repairing the nation's infrastructure and schools, to institute a Green Energy works program, such as contracting with homeowners, commercial property owners, etc. to erect solar panel systems on those roofs that could immediately tap into the existing power grids.  The same goes for wind generators. Also, to give grants to convert cars to electric power, and subsidize public transit riders with tax credits or vouchers. Offer grants to local communities to put empty land back into agricultural use by making it worthwhile for local farmers to grow more vegetables instead of feed corn and livestock feed grains, which could be sold locally. 

Also, create initiatives for innovative Greener public transportation systems wherever it would be efficient and highly used. 

By seriously and drastically reforming the financial and tax systems, and begin a government funded and directed Trickle-Up public works and services initiative, and a homeowner's stabilization plan, the nation would get back moving in the right direction.

Those who say we cannot afford it; my answer is that we cannot afford NOT to do it, otherwise this economic crash could later become a depression lasting a very long time. At that point, out of desperation the ideas mentioned above would have to implemented. But so much time would be wasted, and so much damage would have been made worse.

Our debt to GDP cannot be our biggest concern right now. If we get real reforms implemented, along with public works initiatives that can stimulate new industries, our debt to GDP would improve and the trade deficit would decline because we would be using less foreign oil, auto parts and purchasing fewer foreign cars.  By retrofitting existing cars to electric power, the trade deficit would decline.

I have proposed an outline, which is not unlike what many others have proposed who have the same vision for Obama as I do. This must be put into place now. It cannot wait. It is time to push the Congress to move on these reforms and initiatives even if Bush is not on board with it.

Thanks for reading,  jerry

Morning Brew as Promised

On the video show, which you can view on the screen to the right of the blog page, I spoke about my morning brew. We were talking about Starbucks and how they, too, are cutting back stores because of the economic crisis. I said that I was reducing my purchases there because I have begun to brew my own concoction at home. Carl had a sip of it and raved about it. He told one of our viewers of the show, who comes on live and blogs to us, that I would post the recipe on the blog. So here it is:

Take a 1/2 gallon pitcher and fill it with the following approximate amounts. Obviously, portion it out based upon your taste.
  • Fill pitcher with 1/3 amount, or so, or less of chocolate soymilk.
  • Fill pitcher with 1/3 amount, or so or less of Pacific brand oat milk.
  • Fill pitcher with an amount of Oregon Chai tea. 
  • Make 1.5 C of hot cocoa mix in a sauce pan. I used 1.5 Tbls. of quality real chocolate cocoa.
  • In a French press (I use the smallest type of press), take 1.5 Tbls. of coffee and place at the bottom of the press. Fill it with the hot cocoa, and press it. Pour blend into pitcher.
  • Top off the pitcher with any, or all of the top three liquids.
  • Drink up!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

An Obama Victory!

We here at Eye-on-Washington's command central have projected a Barack Obama win! This election has become a mandate for change, as well as a clear and resounding declaration of a failed Republican agenda.

Barack's grandmother, may she rest in peace, can smile down upon her grandson with pride and admiration that he ran a clean and upstanding campaign against a truly dirty, incompetent and embarrassing opponent.

As Keith Olbermann said in his election-eve commentary, what if it was Obama who presented himself, both in words and actions, the way McCain did during these weeks following the election primaries? Obama would have been seriously criticized. But that was not the case with McCain, expect for MSNBC's starring line-up of pundits. You can see Olbermann's commentary on our video blog page, at the bottom of the page. McCain was given an incredible pass!

What Barack Obama must do tomorrow is to declare himself the President of the United States and that his vision for America will begin immediately, in spite of how George Bush would feel about it. We do not have any time to waste. Time is of the essence.

Congratulations, Barack Obama!! Yes WE Did!

"One small step for man; one giant step for mankind."

POSTSCRIPT:  It is 11:37 P.M. in Pittsburgh, PA, and John McCain conceded the race to Barack Obama. The United States of America has turned a new, and brighter corner in its history. A monumental time as been ushered in. Here is a toast to Barack Obama! May your presidency bring a new dawning for all of us. I would say this is a mandate for change.

Obama electoral votes=349. Popular vote= 52%

McCain electoral votes=163. Popular vote= 46%