Friday, March 12, 2010
Rep. Bart Stupak, a pro-life Democrat, is chagrined. "They're ignoring me," he says, in a phone interview with National Review Online. "That's their strategy now. The House Democratic leaders think they have the votes to pass the Senate's health-care bill without us. At this point, there is no doubt that they've been able to peel off one or two of my twelve. And even if they don't have the votes, it's been made clear to us that they won't insert our language on the abortion issue."
According to Stupak, that group of twelve pro-life House Democrats -- the "Stupak dozen" -- has privately agreed for months to vote 'no' on the Senate's health-care bill if federal funding for abortion is included in the final legislative language. Now, in the debate's final hours, Stupak says the other eleven are coming under "enormous" political pressure from both the White House and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.). "I am a definite 'no' vote," he says. "I didn't cave. The others are having both of their arms twisted, and we're all getting pounded by our traditional Democratic supporters, like unions."
Stupad also laments the mindset of Democratic leaders:
What are Democratic leaders saying? "If you pass the Stupak amendment, more children will be born, and therefore it will cost us millions more. That's one of the arguments I've been hearing," Stupak says. "Money is their hang-up. Is this how we now value life in America? If money is the issue -- come on, we can find room in the budget. This is life we're talking about."
Since reporting the questionable past of runaway Toyota Prius driver James Sikes there's been a deluge of tips coming in about his character, including the following from a former business partner who alleges Sikes stole from their company.
William Sweet says he went into business with Sikes, together opening up a paralegal services company called "AAA California Aid" in 1997. Sweet operated the main office and Sikes ran one in Los Banos, California. Sweet alleges numerous incidents of fraud and theft involving Sikes led him to dissolve their partnership, including an incident in which Sikes sent an employee to break into the main office to steal payment records.
They found for all cancers combined, death rates (per 100,000) in men increased from 249.3 in 1970 to 279.8 in 1990, and then decreased to 221.1 in 2006, yielding a relative decline of 21% from 1990 (peak year) and a drop of 11% since 1970 (baseline year). Similarly, the death rate from all-cancers combined in women increased from 163.0 in 1970 to 175.3 in 1991, and then decreased to 153.7 in 2006, a relative decline of 12% and 6% from the 1991 (peak year) and 1970 rates, respectively.
Senator John Kyl is skeptical of Attorney General Eric Holder's claim that forgetfulness explains his failure to inform the Senate of his role in a brief supporting the position of terrorist Jose Padilla. Kyl asks: "Are we expected to believe that then-nominee Holder, with only a handful of Supreme Court briefs to his name, forgot about his role in one of this country's most publicized terrorism cases?"
Man who became the face of Toyota's gas pedal scandal in runaway Prius incident has troubled financial past leading some to ask whether story is wholly truthful.
We reported in May that after passing a millionaire surtax nearly one-third of Maryland's millionaires had gone missing, thus contributing to a decline in state revenues. The politicians in Annapolis had said they'd collect $106 million by raising its income tax rate on millionaire households to 6.25% from 4.75%. In cities like Baltimore and Bethesda, which apply add-on income taxes, the top tax rate with the surcharge now reaches as high as 9.3%—fifth highest in the nation. Liberals said this was based on incomplete data and that rich Marylanders hadn't fled the state.
Well, the state comptroller's office now has the final tax return data for 2008, the first year that the higher tax rates applied. The number of millionaire tax returns fell sharply to 5,529 from 7,898 in 2007, a 30% tumble. The taxes paid by rich filers fell by 22%, and instead of their payments increasing by $106 million, they fell by some $257 million.
I might put the Supreme Court and the Arm Forces a bit higher, but I do give the IRS huge points for keeping tax info private, not allowing politics to enter and keeping more documents than anyone else.
”It remains true that the IRS is an agency that has been saddled with extraordinarily difficult work, and exposed to public scorn and ridicule (and worse), and yet it efficiently carries out an impressively broad range of the policy choices that emerge from our political system.”
They will hound you to the grave, but for Them there is a different rule. After all, all the IRS would have to do is grab their pay check, but they don’t.
GOING AFTER FEDERAL EMPLOYEES who don’t pay their taxes. “Remember when a passel of Obama appointees didn’t pay their taxes either, but then a bunch of them got to hold really important jobs anyway?
New Study Debunks Myths About Vulnerability of Amazon Rain Forests to Drought
ScienceDaily (Mar. 12, 2010) — A new NASA-funded study has concluded that Amazon rain forests were remarkably unaffected in the face of once-in-a-century drought in 2005, neither dying nor thriving, contrary to a previously published report and claims by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
The IPCC is under scrutiny for various data inaccuracies, including its claim -- based on a flawed World Wildlife Fund study -- that up to 40% of the Amazonian forests could react drastically and be replaced by savannas from even a slight reduction in rainfall.
The Swiss study, romantically entitled "Optimizing the marriage market: An application of the linear assignment model," offers solutions to life's biggest problem.
The highlights are, indeed, a joy to behold, squeeze tightly, and never, ever let go. The perfect wife is five years younger than her husband. She is from the same cultural background. And, please stare at this very carefully: she is at least 27 percent smarter than her husband. Yes, 35 percent smarter seems to be tolerable. But 12 percent smarter seems unacceptable. In an ideal world--which is the goal of every scientist--your wife should have a college degree, and you should not. At least that's what these scientists believe.