Friday, January 30, 2009

New Jersey Strikers to Get Unemployment Benefits

Today, New Jersey's Supreme Court ruled that strikers will receive unemployment benefits... Unbelievable. Can I go on strike now?

The results is that even more unionized businesses will leave New Jersey. So far, gubernatorial hopeful Steve Lonegan protested it.

New York Times Mocking Obama's Inauguration?

I usually don't read this kind of publications, but I came across the New York Times and some articles related to the recent presidential inauguration:

The American public is bemused by the tasteless show-biz extravaganza surrounding [the] inauguration today.

There is something to be said for some showiness in an inauguration. But one felt discomfited all the same.

This is an inauguration, not a coronation.

Is there a parallel between [the first lady's] jewel-toned outfit and somebody else's glass slippers? Why limousines and not shank's mare?

It is still unclear whether we are supposed to shout "Whoopee!" or "Shame!" about the new elegance the [couple is] bringing to Washington.

Quite shocking, after such a wonderful onauguration!
But wait! I forgot to check the date! Ooops. That's the New York Times from Jan. 21, 1981, and it's about Reagan's inauguration, still the most watched in history.

(Courtesy of Ann Coulter)

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Obama and His Giant Ponzi Scheme

I keep wondering how is Obama's "stimulus" (or rather "porkulus") scheme any different from a Ponzi scheme? A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent operation that gives the beneficiaries money paid by subsequent investors rather than from profit. It's exactly what all these bailout and government spending plans are. They pay you know based on the assumption that it will get money later... then pay those contributors again, expecting even more investments.

First they give out 350 billions, then another 350, then 890 billions, "knowing" like any Ponzi schemers that they'll keep getting money in the system to pay out the "investors". Bernie Madoff and other pyramid scheme scammers did it until they didn't get any more money to pay off the earlier investors. What will happen when Obama runs out of money? Well, who cares, these schemes usually run for more than 4 years, so it won't be his problem anymore. Nobody will take him to jail for it, because you know... if the President does it, then it's not illegal.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Contract with New Jersey

Matt Rooney at SaveJersey drafted a "Contract with New Jersey" made of these very common sense issues:

1 - Abolish COAH
2 - Institute School Voucher Program
3 - End Abbott Funding
4 - Eliminate Department of Community Affairs
5 - Limit the use of toll revenues to maintenance of roads
6 - Limit eminent domain to instances of public use only
7 - Permit offshore oil drilling
8 - Eliminate taxpayer-funded pensions for part-time government employees
9 - Establish public database of where and how all tax dollars are spent
10 - Reduce state spending
11 - Reduce corporate tax rate
12- Eliminate property tax rebate system
13 - Reform DYFS

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Top Democrats Discussing Social Reengineering and Wealth Redistribution

Please watch this shocking video featuring prominent Democrats talking about how they're gonna force social reengineering and wealth redistribution down our throats:

Robert Reich, Obama's economic advisor, on 1/7/2009: new jobs shouldn't go to "high skilled people who are already professionals or to WHITE MALE construction workers". Further, the money should go to "others, the long term unemployed minorities, women".

You'd probably think that the new roads and bridges should be built by skilled construction workers regardless of the color of their skin. But the Obama administration doesn't think so.

You have to watch the whole video. And hear Charlie Rangel admitting that the middle class is too busy working hard to notice that they're being cheated. There's something about Rangel's obsession with cheating, remembering how he also cheated on his taxes.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Comments on Tim Geithner

Let me get back to the Tim Geithner story so I can discuss two comments I heard today.

First, Obama said it was an "innocent mistake". Mistake? Come on. That goes is not stupid. He's a smart guy and a financial industry expert. He received lots of documentation on how to report and pay those Social Security and Medicare taxes from his employer, IMF. He also signed to acknowledge receiving them. And again... "mistake"?? He was savvy enough to claim the child and independent care credit on his return, but forgot about Social Security? Well, here's the conundrum: Either Geithner intended not to pay taxes, and in this case it's called tax evasion and he should be tried and could end up in prison. And if it was indeed a mistake (which I doubt), then is this the person you want to oversee IRS??

Second, that pathetic loser Lindsey Graham (yeah, the good friend of you know who), said the we should "play gotcha on this". Is this what it is?? Playing GOTCHA? You gotta be freakin kidding me!! What does he mean? Maybe next time I get pulled over for speeding I should tell the cop "come on officer, let's not play gotcha, I'm busy". Is Graham nuts? It's like catching a sheriff stealing from a store and saying "well, let's not play gotcha, let him do his work".

Bottom line, for the reasons I showed earlier, Tim Geithner is NOT QUALIFIED for the Treasury job. He's either guilty of criminal tax evasion, or he's too stupid to be in charge of the IRS.

Christie leading Corzine 42% - 40% according to Rasmussen

This got to be the best news of the week.
In the first polling since Chris Christie officially announced he's running for Governor, Rasmussen Reports shows him leading Corzine by 42% - 40%.

Freedom of sports now in danger from Obama?

It looks like under the Obama administration, the Government will interfere more and more to restrict our freedoms. His latest plan: to interfere in the College Bowl system according to Doug Bandow's "Sportsman in Chief" article. This morning on ESPN radio, The One said

"I'll have my attorney general investigate the possibility of instituting a college football playoff system through executive order. I'm tired of this nonsense at the end of every college football season."

So here you have it folks. Whatever The One doesn't like, he'll have an executive order to change it. Being a private entity pretty much won't matter anymore, if it doesn't make the Annointed One happy.

I have to thank my friend Michael for pointing me to this information.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Who will Christie pick as Lt Governor?

PolitickerNJ offers some suggestions about Chris Christie's possible picks for Lt. Governor (assuming he wins the nomination). Their odds are:

2-1: Bergen County Clerk Kathleen Donovan
3-1: Senator Jennifer Beck
3-1: Assemblyman Jon Bramnick
6-1: Senator Joe Kyrillos
8-1: Assemblywoman Alison McHose
9-1: Former Assemblyman Jose Sosa
10-1: Senator Diane Allen
10-1: John Crowley
12-1: Senator Tom Kean Jr.
14-1: Senator Bill Baroni

Personally I'm leaning towards Jennifer Beck, especially since she's like me a local triathlete, or Joe Kyrillos who's from my district. Or Alison McHose or Bill Baroni who are my Facebook friends.

Obama's Treasury Secretary is a tax evader

Should I be surprised?
AP reported that Timothy Geithner, Obama's pick for the Treasury, failed to pay $34,000 in taxes between 2001 and 2004. He paid most of these past-due taxes a few days before Obama announced his upcoming appointment.

Seems to become a pattern. Obama's first choice for this position, Bill Richardson, withdrew because he was under federal investigation. If Geitner withdraws, I think the next logical choice would be Charlie Rangel, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, who's also a tax evader.

New Jersey - A victim to forced unionism

Prof. Mark Perry's blog pointed me to look at some reports about interstate migration. As you can see in this NRWTC newsletter, 7 of the top 8 population gainers are Right to Work states, while 7 of the top 8 population losers have forced unionism laws. Thus, between 2000-2008, New Jersey lost 438,617 people, ranking 5th in the nation.

In another report from United Van Lines, which tracks interstate moves performed by that company, in 2007-2008 New Jersey rank third in outbound migration, 58.7% of the moves being outbound.

Now I wonder if anybody on Obama's team is aware of the effects of forced unionism and if they know that their national forced unionism plans will result in more jobs being sent outside of the US. Any economist knows that forced unions and job creation are incompatible notions.

Monday, January 12, 2009

About Stimulus Multipliers

Greg Mankiw has spend a lot of time in the past few days examining the multiplier factors in the upcoming stimulus package. You can read a summary in this Sunday's NY Times article, Is Government Spending Too Easy an Answer?

What I find interesting is that Obama's economic team released a paper which claims the multiplier is 1.57 for Government purchases and 0.99 for taxes. The report is authored by Christina Romer and Jared Bernstein. This is in line with Keynesian expectations which predict that the effect of Government spending has to be higher than that of tax cuts.

But reality is different, and Mr. Mankiw shows that research on past trends point to a spending multipler of about 1.4 and a tax multiplier of around 3. (What this means is that increasing spending by 1% will result in a GDP increase of 1.4%. Same way, cutting taxes by 1% as a share of GDP will boost the GDP by 3%). I think this difference is explained by the Laffer curve and the research was conducted when taxes were way much to the right of the curve.

Anyway, the interesting point here is that one of the papers that claim the 3.0 multiplier for tax cuts comes from David and Christina Romer, the same Christina Romer on Obama's team who now attributes only 0.99 to tax cuts. Mr. Mankiw thinks that Mrs. Romer's position as an adviser is the reason for an increased focus on tax cuts in Obama's plan, but it looks like she caved to the demands of his liberal base. The hope is that somehow the voices of reason will prevail and eocnomic decisions will be based on economists' suggestion, not on politicians'. From my discussions with one of Obama's advisors (although not on the economic team), the president-elect admits he has no clue about economy and will listen to what the experts say as long as it doesn't conflict too much with his extreme-left socialist cohorts. (well, those were not exactly his words, but that was the general idea).

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Democrat smears in Monmouth County

I have to thank Art for this news. In his piece Politics affects appointments he offers a good response to the attack in Asbury Park Press (the official newspaper of Jersey shore Democrats) on Monmouth Co Republican Chairman, Joe Oxley. APP claims his company's appointment as a township attorney in Wall is solely politically motivated.

Now I've worked in Government contracting and I know Government entities usually award contracts to the lowest bidder. And Mr. Oxley's firm actually bid lower than the competitors. Even lower than the previous attorney. Oh, maybe that's what ticked off the Dems. They can't grasp the concept of cutting Government spending. After all, a Government position for them is a way to financially rewarding their cronies.

In APP's editorial there was no mention of Mr. Oxley's qualifications. And no mention of him losing the Highlands attorney job after Democrats took over that council. And I don't recall any outrage when Vic Scudiery, the Monmouth Democrats boss, got a DMV location into his own Airport Plaza in Hazlet, even more naming one of his associates as office chief, with a pretty good salary despite a total lack of experience.

So let me finish with Art's words:
Oxley is a former mayor of Middletown and has been designated a Diplomate in New Jersey Municipal Law. He is qualified and his firm was apparently the lowest bidder for the job. You would think the APP would like that.

The blog has moved

I've relocated my blog (known as Blogging Chris) to the Blogger Network and renamed it Right in Jersey. I live in Jersey, I'm always right, and there's a slight right-wing bias in my postings, so that should explain the name. Plus other options were already taken :-)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

It's Official: Chris Christie Enters NJ Gubernatorial Race

Just announced. Remember the ABC of 2009: Anything But Corzine.
From Chris Christie:

Dear Friend,

This morning I am filing papers to begin the process to become a candidate for the Republican nomination for Governor of New Jersey.

I did not take this step lightly. It was only after careful consideration and consultation with my family that I decided to become a candidate.

New Jersey is broken. New Jersey’s taxes have become so unaffordable that more families are leaving our state than moving here. Our state's business tax climate is ranked 50th in the nation and has become so unattractive to employers that only government jobs are growing in New Jersey . Yet nothing in Trenton gets done to fix these problems.

We can change this. We can solve these problems if we're willing to make the tough decisions.

In my seven years as your United States Attorney, I didn't shy away from any of the tough decisions. I took on corporate greed, political corruption, terrorism and environmental polluters. Public officials from both parties were prosecuted for corruption – more than 130 were convicted, and not one was acquitted. Corporate executives who cheated their companies and hurt their workers were successfully prosecuted. Terrorist plots were disrupted; polluters punished.

Many didn’t believe we could win these battles. We did, and with strong leadership we will win the fight for Governor and change this state for the better.

My formal announcement for Governor will come in the first week in February and I hope you will join us (I will email you the details). With strong leadership now, we can fix our broken state and make it more affordable for all New Jersey families.

Chris Christie

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Global Sea Ice at Same Levels as in 1979

Despite 29 years of development, increased global GDP and raising CO2 emissions, sea ice levels ended 2008 at the same level as in 1979.
Should the polar bear's inclusion on the threatened species (dues to the danger of disappearing sea ice) be revised? I mean, the bear is no more in danger than 29 years ago. (Well, the answer is obvious, considering the new administration).

Monday, January 5, 2009

Al Franken and the Funny Business of Minnesota

An article in today's Wall Street Journal details all the tricks comedian Al Franken used to steal the Senate election in Minnesota.
Among them:
  • once he claimed a 225-vote lead, the man who was insisting on "counting every vote" wants to shut the process down
  • more than 25 precincts now have more ballots than voters who signed in to vote. By some estimates this double counting has yielded Franken an additional 80 to 100 votes
  • Franken's campaign charged that one Hennepin County precinct had "lost" 133 votes, since the hand recount showed fewer ballots than machine votes recorded on Election Night. Though there is no proof to this missing vote charge, the Canvassing Board chose to go with the Election Night total, rather than the actual number of ballots in the recount. That decision gave Franken a gain of 46 votes
  • a Ramsey County precinct ended up with 177 more ballots than there were recorded votes on Election Night. In that case, the board decided to go with the extra ballots, rather than the Election Night total. This gave Franken a net gain of 37 votes, which means he's benefited both ways from the board's inconsistency
If the Canvassing Board certifies Franken as the winner based on the current count, it will be anointing a tainted and undeserving Senator.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Obama to Ban Plastic, Makup, Asphalt and more

You probably heard that Obama wants to get us off the oil in 10 years. In his well-known, utter ignorance, he probably thinks oil only fuels our cars. He could find it interesting to learn that oil is also used for:
- everything plastic
- rubber and vinyls (used in clothing or carpetting)
- fertilizers, pesticides
- asphalt
- paints, glues, polishes
- some pharmaceutical products, including aspirin and antihistamines
- air flight (while we had alternative-power cars, like hybrids or electrics, so far no plane has flown on alternative energy)
- cosmetics

The last item suggest a solution: Ban makeup! This will surely get Nancy Pelosi to change her mind on drilling.

Friday, January 2, 2009

The Recycling Nonsense

Although most people refuse to admit it, it's widely recognized (by economists, not by politicians) that for most items, recycling costs more than producing them from raw materials. Now that some raw materials got a little bit more expensive, there are more items where recycling can be profitable, especially if you ignore the hidden costs.

Tim Worstall has an article in the Times, The Hidden Cost of Recycling.

And there's always the NY Times classic article, Recyling is Garbage.

Obama the Gaffe Machine

Since Inauguration gets closer, I'm looking back at Michelle Malkin's Best Of collection of Obama gems. Some of them deserve to be on YouTube next to that Miss America or Kellie Pickler:

"In case you missed it, this week, there was a tragedy in Kansas. Ten thousand people died -- an entire town destroyed." (The actual death toll: 12)

"Over the last 15 months, we've traveled to every corner of the United States. I've now been in 57 states? I think one left to go."

"Thank you, Sioux City. ... I said it wrong. I've been in Iowa for too long. I'm sorry." (in Sioux Falls, S.D.)

"There was something stirring across the country because of what happened in Selma, Ala., because some folks are willing to march across a bridge. So they got together and Barack Obama Jr. was born." (the Selma march was in 1965. Obama was born in 1961)

"We only have a certain number of them, and if they are all in Iraq, then it's harder for us to use them in Afghanistan." (Speaking about translators. Iraqis and Afghanis speak totally different languages)